I like being British.
I like Doctor Who and rolling fields and quirky old bookshops. I like the BBC and the NHS.
But this country is currently embroiled in what the internet has christened the omnishambles. Sure, Britain has seen scandal and controversy before, but boy oh boy, this last few months has been the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to the systematic dismantling of public trust in… Well, in anything really. Because frankly, this country is now run by moral invertebrates, so parasitically enmeshed into ‘the System’ that removing them seems impossible. The next election has never seemed so far away.
I mean, the phone hacking scandal was bad enough in and of itself, but then the Leveson enquiry started uncovering the connections between the media hacks behind this and the Government. And it’s all very chummy, all garden parties and supportive text messages between high-ranking politicians and the Murdochistas. Meanwhile hundreds of people have had their phones hacked, and for what? Cheap, unimportant tabloid gossip that the general public lapped up without asking how some of these stories were obtained.
We can vote against some of these people, of course, but then they just get into bed with each other and form a coalition. I never thought voting for the Lib Dems would lead to the sneaking privatisation of the NHS and a rise in student fees. But that’s what we’re getting.
But hey, we’re all in it together, right? We’re all in it together as millionaires close our libraries, cut benefits to our most vulnerable, cut a swath through the public services we rely on.
I don’t have a problem with millionaires. I have a problem with millionaires saying “we’re all in it together” as they progressively turn the screws on people, as they fuel the demonisation of the disabled. Add to this riots, in which communities burned while MPs went on holiday, and the fabric of British society is feeling very fragile and vulnerable indeed. And we fight, like rats in a sack, which bankers threaten to screw the economy again (and make money when they get caught), while the festering sores of things like police corruption (check out the Daniel Morgan case for a truly horrifying example of this) continue to poison the country.
And those responsible are still there, still smug, still displaying a complete lack of contrition or regret over what’s happening.
And I have no real idea what we can do about it.