Sunday, May 24, 2009

Stoke the Vile

This is why I was doing all that driving and why I can never return to Stoke-on-Trent.

10 comments:

  1. good article. though I hope your opinion of their home town hasn't nudged the people of Stoke a little further into the path of the BNP.

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  3. Eh?

    "Small parties such as the BNP are on the rise. In 1998 they took 7% of the vote in local elections; last year that figure had risen to 15%. Recent opinion polls suggest they will receive about 40% of votes in the European elections next month. Old tribal loyalties are melting away to be replaced by new, more disturbing ones."

    BNP on 40%? The largest party?

    What?

    Opinion polls show them anywhere from 1% to 4%.

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  4. If you'd said "the smoke from burning trees" in your first line, i think you'd have given an epigraph to what has happened to England. I see one huge metaphor playing out: The island was originally all forest; it was cut down until the islanders had to become sailors and go elsewhere to get what they needed. They did not husband what they had, not thinking of the future. But they became the rulers of the world despite that. Now the consequences are coming thick and fast; the future is here, the trees are gone forever, someone has to pay.

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  5. "Epitaph" works well too.

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  6. Maybe the "who are we?" stuff is overdone. People are just as much what they do and have done to them. So, er, what do we do?

    Also, I'd imagine that there are one or more Stokes in every large town. That estate, call it what you will, which is used as a people dump for those who don't fit in. As a country we don't appear to treat each other all that well, starting with these places. They are almost the modern equivalent of the old transportation colonies.

    Nige had a very good post recently on the quieter England, the silent majority of fond memory (though he didn't use that term). I suspect they are more radical and pragmatic than is supposed but they aren't taken in either by the East End bugger boys of the BNP or by the dottier end of the Greens and conservationists. We'll soon find out what they think.

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  7. Talking of epis, "I can never return to Stoke-on-Trent" is a good epigraph, and "He has returned to Stoke-on-Trent" an excellent 'taph.

    Stoke has officially the loudest football fans in the country. Is that relevant do you think?

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  8. Maybe a country like Britain needs to see parties like the BNP and UKIP given power for a while. Then, when they make an even bigger mess of things than the career politicians and show themselves up to be the utter incompetents they surely are, people will finally learn that they really do get the politicians they deserve.

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  9. Are you sure that Stoke wants you to return?

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