Friday, July 21, 2017

You wouldn't recognise the working class if you fell over it

I find it laughable that left-wing commentators still insist that they speak on behalf of the 'working class'. Their rhetoric is filled with disparaging references to the 'upper class' and the 'bosses' as if they are quoting from one of Karl Marx's works and as if they themselves weren't part of the groups they are maligning. The reality is they don't speak on behalf on the working class at all and wouldn't recognise members of that group if they fell over them. The popularity of Brexit and Donald Trump, so despised by the left, with lower-income working people should be ample proof that the left-wing is completely out of touch with what such people really think.

The left-wing does not represent working people any longer. The biggest supporters of so-called progressive ideals today come from the highest income earners rather than those at the other end of the scale. They are the politicians, public servants, academics and those in the private sector that are most dependent on the government for their incomes, who typically earn far above average incomes and who have little exposure to the working class on whose behalf they purport to speak. Welfare beneficiaries support big-government left-wing parties for obvious reasons, but genuine working class people - those who continue to provide for themselves in spite of the disincentives to work of the welfare state - are now as likely to support right-of-centre parties and candidates. This is because it is the latter that speaks to their disaffection with the loss of high-paid blue collar jobs, the rising cost of living, and the perceived economic threat from immigration.

The problem for left-wingers is they have no self-awareness so they tend to believe their own propaganda. They claim their political interests are aligned with those of the underclass but for this to be believable they have to convince us, and themselves, that there is still a traditional class system. It is true that there is an elite in Western countries today but it does not comprise the same people who dominated the upper echelons of government and other institutions up until the middle of the 20th Century. Today's elite is technocratic and bureaucratic rather than aristocratic and largely comprises the left-wingers themselves. Like the elite of yesteryear, they arrogantly assume they know what is best for their subjects and speak disparagingly of those over whom they believe they should rule. The modern version of Marie Antoinette's apocryphal, "Let them eat cake", is surely Hillary Clinton's "deplorables" comment. And the consequences for the utterer were similar.

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