Wednesday 23rd November
Not all revolutions come from the Left, in fact History teaches us that the rise of National Socialism in Germany was Protectionist and anti-foreigner (in this case Jewish people) backed by several rich industrialists but appealing to an impoverished working class. Even the American Revolution was led by rich Colonists not ordinary farmers. And now the almost-revolution of 2016 is also coming from the Right, both UKIP and the Tea Party (which has now overtaken the GOP) have captured large sections of the population who feel dis-empowered and neglected by both major parties, and by using an instinctive dislike of both change and an influx of people they perceive as different, many who have never been really interested in Politics before voted for them, and they have gained Power on the backs of a backlash against the Modern World. And have no doubt about it; those leading this almost-revolution have no real plans to improve the lot of ordinary people, they are the very ones who have created the Modern World.
And we have all had to accommodate an accelerating pace of change over the years; I can remember seeing signs in windows “Room to Let, No Blacks or Irish”. And Computers and Globalisation and International Trade are not going to go away, the best we can hope for is a strong International regime of Democratic Control to ameliorate the worst aspects and to protect the weak and vulnerable. The Right hate International Agreements and will try to take us back to Protectionism and Nationalism.
And now being reasonable, plying the quiet Centre Ground arguments, is not enough. Jeremy Corbyn tried that in the Brexit debate and got blamed for the vote to Leave; Hilary presented herself as the Continuity Candidate, all reasonableness and sense. But reason went out of the window. Maybe the Left and the Centre will have to fight fire with fire, take the gloves off and really hit back at the ultra Right.
This Revolution may not have run its course; Marine Le Pen in France and elections in Holland and Germany may throw up more surprises. But…..
Most Revolutions fail, the enthusiasm of the mob, once so easily whipped up can wane just as quickly, and even turn on those who drove them down that particular road. Let us hope so, before too much damage is done.