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Showing posts with label David Starkey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label David Starkey. Show all posts

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Eejits out in force today–Herald Letters and Starkey

I mentioned in my last blog that among the most ridiculous suggestions by unionists as they tramped their sour grapes after the May election results –still advanced by a few eejits - was that the SNP didn’t have a mandate, despite the landslide vote, because of the turnout. Right on cue, we have in Herald Letters today one FG Hay from Largs, whose favourite word seems to be gullibility. And there’s a bit more name-calling, in best unionist speak from two others.

But they’re more than balanced out by the Rev. Archie Black, who offers some calm facts about the Union, the UK, independence and Europe.

Dr. David Starkey, the British Empire personified as spluttering indignation, was accused by some academics of politicising a debate on the teaching of history in schools. The Regius Professor of Modern History at Cambridge, Richard Evans suggested that Starkey and his enthusiastic fan Michael Gove were “advocating myth and memory rote learning … to feed children self-congratulatory narrow myths of history”.

Starkey also appears to believe that most of Britain is “mono-culture” and a lot of it, especially where he comes from, is “absolutely and unmitigatingly white”.

I can’t imagine you living anywhere else, Dr. Starkey, given your views. It’s a pity Niall Ferguson has gone back to America in the huff, and can’t help, but take heart – you still have Andrew Roberts

A valuable mind-cleanser after listening to Starkey, Roberts or Ferguson is always Norman Davies, historian and author of The Isles, and fortuitously his new book Vanished Kingdoms arrived today with a satisfying thud.

A quote from the early pages already says a great deal – I’m just getting into it now …

“ … the British risk falling into a state of self-delusion which tells them that their condition is still as fine, that their institutions are above compare, that their country is somehow eternal. The English, in particular are blissfully unaware that the disintegration of the United Kingdom began in 1922 and will probably continue; they are less aware of complex identities than are the Welsh, the Scots or the Irish. Hence, if the end does come, it will come as a surprise.”

But not to Dr. Starkey or Michael Gove – that’s what prompts them to ever greater flights of rhetoric. Rule Britannia – while you can …

Friday, 29 April 2011

The Royal Wedding - a Union symbolising a divided nation?

Celebrations across Britain? Technically true, but in fact concentrated on London and the Home Counties.

Anglesey and St. Andrews effectively had to stand for Wales and Scotland, for obvious reasons - the royal couple live in Anglesey, and went to St. Andrew's - a Scottish University that is predominantly the province of rich English students.

This was a wedding attended by the rich and privileged (plus a few brutal tyrants), the British Establishment and a few token peasants. It was almost exclusively white - apart from the dictators - and entirely unrepresentative of the United Kingdom. It was a huge expensive PR exercise for the British Establishment, militarism and organised religion, mainly Christian.

It was reported in either hushed reverential tones or a nauseatingly jolly jingoistic and patronising manner by the BBC and ITV both nationally and regionally, and grossly distorted the reality of the widespread indifference of Scotland, Wales and the Midlands and North of England.

Only Channel 4 offered any kind of realistic debate and critique. We expected little else, and it's over - till the next time.