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The Sun Sets on the Union Jack
Hugh McInnish

Hugh The sun never sets on the Union Jack! This was the frequently-heard saying in the 19th and, up to World War II, the 20th century alluding to the reality that the British flag flew in an empire stretched around the globe. After 1918 a war-weary Britain preached, and practiced, disarmament, while Hitler came to power, rearmed Germany to the hilt, and began his aggressive moves.

Hitler saw Britain's pacifism under Chamberlain as "decadence," and this view entered into his calculations and helped tip his decision toward war. He anticipated an easy victory over his enemies and looked forward to dividing the British Empire among himself and his allies. But Hitler miscued.

When finally the English awoke to the danger they replaced Chamberlain with Churchill and, after taking a lot of punishment, during which they thought their island might be invaded by the Germans any day, they reversed the tide and with our help finally won the war. Hitler was entirely wrong in his assessment of the mettle of the British. Or so it seemed at the time.

In fact post war developments give material to any who may want to argue that his only mistake was in foreseeing the future and mistaking it for the present. As the war ended the British population couldn't wait–they just could not wait–to move toward socialism. Having won the war and not needing the warrior Churchill any more, they dismissed him and plunged in. Now the long term results are in and have been sketched for us by the columnist Paul Craig Roberts.

As he puts it, "One hundred years ago Great Britain was the world's only superpower. Today, even its culture is disappearing. The nation that stood up to Napoleon and Hitler has been overcome by the welfare state." Marriage, once the cornerstone of British society is dwindling and illegitimacy is soaring. The London Times reports that "What were once conventional norms of behavior are being overturned across the board, and [the government] is more concerned with gay issues than the collapse of the traditional family structure."

It gets worse, if that's possible. Roberts reports Tony Blair's Labour (i. e. socialist) government plans to give the same estate tax exemptions to gay couples that are given to legitimate couples. And then there is the proposed treatment of those people called "travelers." These are roving bands who have no fixed address. They will be permitted to vote in just whatever district at which they may whimsically show up on election day. Never mind that they just came to town for the first time in their lives the night before and know nothing about the history, culture, or problems of the district and its people. They may vote then and there.

Under this rule a Gypsy caravan could, of its own volition or under the pay of some politician not necessarily benevolent, target a local district, wheel in and spread their tents the night before, and take over with the coordinated pull of the requisite number of levers on election day. Blair also wants to empower prisoners to vote, according to Roberts. Does this mean, could it possibly mean, that prisoners could take over a small district in which there was located a large prison? Surely the Mother Country, while possibly verging on insanity, still has enough wit to reject such an absurd idea.

Roberts concludes that "British culture has disappeared because the British government can tell no difference between those who carry the burdens of society and those who burden society."

Herr Hitler was wrong in his assay of the British people of 1940. He thought that England would not fight but they did. But if his opinion were taken as a prediction for the future rather than as a conclusion applicable to his war plans of that day, he may not have been entirely wrong. The British have sunk into the decadence of socialism, and today when the sun goes down over London it sets on the Union Jack.


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