A virtue-signaller …
It is not often that one reads such a fulminant denouncement of our ‘elites’ as that by Allister Heath in the DT. The title, “Our woke elite would rather signal their virtue than fight actual injustice” (paywalled link) seems mild – we all know that virtue signalling is one of the preferred pastimes of our self-appointed elites, but then Mr Heath sets the scene in the introductory paragraphs with these questions:
“What is wrong with our modern, holier-than thou establishment? Why is it so hypocritical, so superficial and yet so self-satisfied? It considers itself to be the most caring, moral and progressive generation ever, committed to combating injustice, stamping out racism and saving the planet, and yet it is unwilling to fight the truly difficult battles.
I’m not just referring to film stars who rail against climate change from their private jets. The insincerity and cowardice are endemic: the activists and the luvvies, the woke “thought-leaders” and charity bosses, the church authorities and public sector managers, the Left-wing lawyers and on-trend bankers, the bien-pensant crowd and their millions of followers are in too many cases living a lie. Time and again, either explicitly or implicitly, those with cultural power end up backing the powerful against the dispossessed, the elites against ordinary people, their self-interest dressed up as altruism, all the while congratulating themselves for being so, so good.” (paywalled link)
His ‘diagnosis’ in the next paragraphs is devastating.:
“The reality is that, unlike previous cohorts of reformers, they only care about taking on a small set of injustices: those that make them look virtuous, that don’t require any real effort or sacrifice. As for everything else, no need to worry: they have already earned their moral credits for the year by “calling out” a few heretics.
What is most galling about today’s “social justice warriors” is their delusional narcissism, their belief that they are achieving more than previous generations – including those who took on the horrific evils of apartheid or who fought for civil and equal rights, actually and truly improving the world against all the odds.” (paywalled link)
After asking where the luvvies’ protests are in support of the Hong Kong demonstrators, Allister Heath states:
“Once upon a time, young, Left-wing politically-active Westerners would have taken a stand. But today’s social media generation aren’t interested. The Hong Kongers want democracy, free speech and self-determination: these are not values that the Western upper classes care about anymore.
In fact, many of the most politically engaged in our universities actively campaign against such beliefs, endorsing instead a brutish, post-enlightenment form of authoritarian technocracy. Far from seeking to liberate people, to fight for individual freedom, all of the focus is on trying to restrain other humans, to prevent them from “hurting” others by expressing forbidden ideas.
The same moral blindness applies to the repression of the independence movement in Catalonia. This sort of outrage was meant to be inconceivable in the West. The problem is that it’s taking place in the EU, which in the elite’s hierarchy of values is beyond reproach; and it’s all too reminiscent of Brexit. The ruling class’s fury at the 2016 referendum, its anger at the public’s decision to revolt, its attempts to reverse the result: Brexit Derangement Syndrome has led many otherwise intelligent people to no longer support other independence movements around the world.” (paywalled link)
Just so – and the fact that we hardly ever hear in our MSM about the ongoing protest of the Gilets Jaunes which started over a year ago is another indication for this moral blindness. The next paragraphs are on the ‘choice’ these ‘elites’ will probably make in the forthcoming GE:
“Perhaps most distressingly of all, many self-styled progressives will still vote for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party in three weeks’ time: their dirty little secret is that they don’t really care about Jew-hate. There are QCs, economists and activists on Twitter who wear their anti-racism on their sleeve but who still back Labour. How can it possibly be right to put a party into power that has helped trigger a rebirth of the world’s oldest hatred? Does nothing mean anything any longer?
The terrible reality is that in many (though of course not all) cases, the loud, in your face moralising, the endless preaching and lecturing and sermoning is all for show. Far from being genuinely moral, many of “the great and the good” treat political discourse as a fashion accessory, as a means of obtaining a higher social status, as the key membership requirement of the priesthood of the cultural upper-echelon.” (paywalled link)
Ouch! That verdict is spot on, it is simply irrefutable. One only needs to listen to these ‘elites’ talk on ‘political’ TV shows to realise that their opinions are being pushed by the other ‘elite’, that in the MSM, who think that only they themselves possess true insight.
Allister Heath’s concluding remarks are sharp, to the point, and explain why fewer and fewer of us oaks are prepared to take our opinion from those se;f-proclaimed ‘elites’:
“Publicly espousing the approved views legitimises everything else: it allows one to be selfish, mean, angry, greedy, ignorant, irrational, hyper-emotional and even sexist and anti-Semitic. In some cases, the double-standards are as extreme as in Victorian times: a commitment to gender equality or diversity in public, the most disgusting homophobia or racism in private.
In the 1930s, the upper classes kept out the oiks by dressing and speaking in a certain way and by mastering complex other rituals; today, they do so by broadcasting Left-authoritarian soundbites and attacking anybody who deviates. But at least the patrician rulers of the 1930s-1960s actually felt an obligation towards society: this self-centred bunch says what it does purely to feel better about itself, to legitimise its lifestyle.
It values virtue-signalling more highly than action, and is prepared to turn a blind eye to genuine injustices. There is a glaring moral vacuum at the heart of our new establishment, and it explains why so many ordinary voters hold Britain’s entire ruling class in such contempt.” (paywalled link)
This outstanding article is the best indictment of what is wrong in our society where we’re presented with ‘truths’ which we’re meant to accept because ‘celebrities’, the self-proclaimed elite, are uttering them with no fear of any repercussions. We’ve long since recognised their threadbare ‘do as we say, not as we do’ posturings. Now we must make sure that family, colleagues and acquaintances don’t fall into the trap set by the mutual recognition society of ‘elites’ and MSM who are going to tell us whom to vote for.
Who do they think they are? Emperors without clothes, that’s who!