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The sentimentality and infantilisation of Britain Watch

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    I think Gerald Warner has hit the nail on the head with the changes that have happened in our society here:

    "Debo Devonshire reminds us of a Britain with backbone and purpose"

    The comments by Deborah, Duchess of Devonshire in Tatler, regarding the abandonment of the stiff upper lip in British society, are a welcome reminder of the days when this country still had purpose, backbone and self-control. The Duchess condemns the present “sloppy sentimental” culture in modern Britain and observes that money, illness and sex were not talked about in the old days, whereas now they are the only things people talk about.
    “Self-pity and self-esteem, which are now the key things in schools, were not allowed,” she recalls. She is right. The modish cult of self-expression and self-indulgence in British schools, combined with a nanny-state culture of health and safety, is filleting all character out of the next generation. Discipline is non-existent: louts who self-evidently need a good birching are given counselling instead. Youngsters’ “experiences” and “feelings” are awarded spurious significance when what is required is enforced hard work in fields of genuine academic importance, coupled with rigid discipline.
    A startling consequence of the cult of “yoof” has been the infantilisation of undergraduates. Fifty years ago, undergraduates were adults, with a wide range of grown-up interests. Their dress, manners and topics of conversation were largely identical to those of men 10 or 40 years their seniors. Today, outside the very narrow field of their academic subject (and even that may nowadays be trivial or charlatan), their conduct, clothes and interests are indistinguishable from those of teenagers working in supermarkets.
    A vile culture of immature incivility, Philistinism and ignorance of adult life has ghettoised “students” so that they remain frozen within adolescence – as do their contemporaries outside higher education – subsidised by taxpayers. Time was, the conversation in a Junior Common Room was almost as mature as in a London club: today undergraduate discourse is largely the babble of overgrown teenagers.
    The ultimate condemnation is to describe something as not being “fair”. An infatuated notion of “equality”, “non-discrimination” and other politically correct humbug have displaced rational or original thought. The masses are drugged with “reality” television shows – than which nothing could be more unreal – and obsessed with the squalid, cataleptically boring couplings and uncouplings of cretins termed “celebrities”. Where once the great virtue of reticence ruled, a vulgar, gutless, let-it-all-hang-out mentality has turned Britain into a sewer.
    It was America, with its spill-your-guts-to-Oprah attitude and Bill Clinton feeling people’s pain all the way to the bank that initiated this decline. Its apostle in Britain was the Great Charlatan, Tony Blair, with his “People’s Princess” guff and his calculated, Bambi-eyed sentimentality. The post-Diana emotional spasm was Britain’s most shameful moment. Perhaps a recession will engender a degree of stoicism, as people confront real problems instead of agonising over those of celebrities personally unknown to them. Perhaps… But don’t bet the farm on it.
    Let's see what everyone thinks...

    Now of course people are going to say "well I'm an undergraduate and I'm not like that and neither are my friends" but, it is hard to deny that that changes Gerald Warner refers to have occurred.
    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/ge...e-and-purpose/
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    Mmm K.
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    Would this help?

    http://britainsdestruction.wordpress.com/
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    Well put. I completely agree with what Warner says in his article. Such a shame how much this country has changed and this underclass of people has formed. These people wouldn't give a damn if there was a nuclear holocaust, as long as they didn't miss the X-Factor.
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    p.s. I do not support BNP or any party for that matter.
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    (Original post by JakePearson)
    Well put. I completely agree with what Warner says in his article. Such a shame how much this country has changed and this underclass of people has formed. These people wouldn't give a damn if there was a nuclear holocaust, as long as they didn't miss the X-Factor.
    Who formed this underclass of people? The media? The government? The Elite?
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    A startling consequence of the cult of “yoof” has been the infantilisation of undergraduates. Fifty years ago, undergraduates were adults, with a wide range of grown-up interests. Their dress, manners and topics of conversation were largely identical to those of men 10 or 40 years their seniors. Today, outside the very narrow field of their academic subject (and even that may nowadays be trivial or charlatan), their conduct, clothes and interests are indistinguishable from those of teenagers working in supermarkets.
    A vile culture of immature incivility, Philistinism and ignorance of adult life has ghettoised “students” so that they remain frozen within adolescence – as do their contemporaries outside higher education – subsidised by taxpayers. Time was, the conversation in a Junior Common Room was almost as mature as in a London club: today undergraduate discourse is largely the babble of overgrown teenagers.

    I wish this was still the case, tbh.
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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    Who formed this underclass of people? The media? The government? The Elite?
    It formed itself - through substandard education, the welfare state and to an extent, although not to a tin-foil hat wearing extent, the media.
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    (Original post by JakePearson)
    It formed itself - through substandard education, the welfare state and to an extent, although not to a tin-foil hat wearing extent, the media.
    Aren't these just "instruments" that were used to bring about the desired (if it be desired) change? I want to know who implimented them; who designed and put forward into action these "instruments" to bring about the change?
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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    Aren't these just "instruments" that were used to bring about the desired (if it be desired) change? I want to know who implimented them; who designed and put forward into action these "instruments" to bring about the change?
    As the government has the power to do so, and have used this power, I'd place the blame on them.
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    And people have been complaining about "the youth of today" for thousands of years.
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    (Original post by JakePearson)
    Well put. I completely agree with what Warner says in his article. Such a shame how much this country has changed and this underclass of people has formed. These people wouldn't give a damn if there was a nuclear holocaust, as long as they didn't miss the X-Factor.
    Sadly, you're not wrong.
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    I think the same kind of argument was put forward by Cato. :holmes: Not to say they don't have a point. But these arguments are raised by each successive generation. Coincidently i have one right in front of me which dates back to 1794, an Admiral is complaining about the attitudes of the young midshipmen who enter the service, as well as the youth in general.
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    (Original post by JakePearson)
    As the government has the power to do so, and have used this power, I'd place the blame on them.
    If the media is one of those "instruments" by which one can bring about certain desireable or undesireable changes in society; how can we blame the government for such changes?

    The media (i.e. the news corporations) is not run by the government.

    Or am I missing something?
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    (Original post by Aeolus)
    I think the same kind of argument was put forward by Cato. :holmes: Not to say they don't have a point. But these arguments are raised by each successive generation. Coincidently i have one right in front of me which dates back to 1794, an Admiral is complaining about the attitudes of the young midshipmen who enter the service, as well as the youth in general.
    Makes you wonder what it'll be like in 100 years, doesn't it?
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    (Original post by Aeolus)
    I think the same kind of argument was put forward by Cato. :holmes: Not to say they don't have a point. But these arguments are raised by each successive generation. Coincidently i have one right in front of me which dates back to 1794, an Admiral is complaining about the attitudes of the young midshipmen who enter the service, as well as the youth in general.
    Right - yes people are always going to complain about young people. But that's not the only point he is making - he is talking about changes across the whole of society. Moreover in the article Warner identifies several concrete changes that have occurred, the question is whether they are open to dispute.

    There's another nice take on the sentimentality and look at me culture here:

    In the ten years since (the death of Diana) the country has become used to regular bouts of emotional incontinence – over Louise Woodward, the Soham murders - and good luck to anybody who tries to stem the flow. Only recently, with the debacle over the Iran naval hostages, has there been the slightest suggestion that their might be a few qualms making themselves felt over quite what we have become. Seaman Fay Turney’s claim that her story had to be told – which she then did, with an apparent lack of self-consciousness as to its total self-centredness – helped provoke a backlash, although normal service was resumed shortly afterwards with the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. These headline cases might of course be led by the media, but it would be unfair to say that they are their sole creations, for in many respects there are simply reflecting what has changed ‘on the street.’

    Grief has become another way of putting on a show. As I write this, there are no less than three flowery shrines within walking distance in my part of South East London, bedecked with fluffy toys and photographs. It is hard not to be made uncomfortable by the extravagant claims made for the deceased – in each case, young people in traffic accidents – and by the odd way in which the whole display intrudes on one’s own private thoughts. Doubtless there is sincerity there, but one battles against the uncharitable thought that these shrines, with their child-like sense of drama, provide perfect opportunities, for those for whom private grief is no grief at all, to show off to the outside world.

    The determination of others, possibly complete strangers, to add their all-important two-penny’s worth can also lead to embarrassing situations: one correspondent to the satirical magazine Private Eye wrote of how he placed a wrongly delivered bouquet of flowers next to a nearby lamppost in the hope that it would be claimed, only to find when he returned home later that it had been joined by four more bunches. Another related an incident in Liverpool where someone found what appeared to be an aborted foetus in a back street. Soon the site was covered in flowers, teddy bears and maudlin messages – until the Merseyside Police announced that the remains were in fact those of a chicken.

    ...more and more of us are not, apparently, leaving to chance the weird and wonderful ways in which we want to be remembered. At the turn of the millennium a report by the Co-operative Funeral Service found there was a growing demand for personal, custom-made ceremonies in which religion, and with it the implied sense of the deceased in some sort of context, would play less and less of a part. ‘Whether it is a particular version of a pop song or a horse-drawn hearse, we want to have the last word in how we are remembered and personalise our funeral by exercising the wide number of options available to us’, said a Co-operative spokesman, as a new service devoted to carrying out all your detailed demands, the Funeral Pledge, was launched. The use of chart-topping ‘power ballads’ are increasingly taking over from traditional hymns, with Bette Midler’s Wind Beneath My Wings, and Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On amongst the most consistently popular choices.'
    http://www.standpointmag.co.uk/node/2666
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    "Duchess of Devonshire in Tatler" says it all really.
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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    If the media is one of those "instruments" by which one can bring about certain desireable or undesireable changes in society; how can we blame the government for such changes?

    The media (i.e. the news corporations) is not run by the government.

    Or am I missing something?
    It's the same kind of corruption and bribery that often go together with media and government. So much of a government's policies influence the media, and so much of the media's views influence the government, that it is impossible to separate them.
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    (Original post by JakePearson)
    Makes you wonder what it'll be like in 100 years, doesn't it?

    I don't doubt our generation will be revered as champions of stoicism by those who pine over a rose tinted view of the past.
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    But..youth is the only thing worth having, why take it away from us? That old wrinkly ***** is just jealous.
 
 
 
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