Monday, 11 December 2006

Up the chimney with you, sonny

The shadow Attorney General’s pronouncements about the success of our Victorian forbears in changing public attitudes to moral codes, together with a lot of stuff (in a report on social justice prepared by Iain Duncan Smith and published today) about fathers—particularly Afro-Caribbean ones—shirking their responsibilities and unmarried parents damaging society may not mean that his party actually wants to put the clock back a hundred and fifty years.
But the suggestion first voiced in 1983 by Margaret Thatcher that we could learn much from Victorian mores remains alive in the Tory mind, and some of them will not regret that a front-page headline in one of yesterday’s papers was:
Bring back Victorian values, says key Tory.

There cannot be many, even among aged Yahoos of the right, who believe that our modern ills stem from the abandonment of the values of 1850, and that—for example—giving women the vote, letting them into universities and allowing them to own property even when married were the first steps along the slippery downward slope which has led in modern times to a widespread lack of moral fibre and a general decline in such matters as the ability to wage a decent war against lesser breeds.

I suppose there must be some, though, in the higher echelons of the party, who sincerely believe this.

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