The first one about the travails of Brown could have been rustled up on that 20 minute journey on the bus I was talking about earlier, the second one about the "Redwhiteandbluenecks" (the "Palin constituency" in Britain) is probably the worst piece of clichéd, bigoted (and that's from a regular reader of Brian Feeney's column), insulting journalism I’ve read in some time.
These people don’t plant national flags on their porches like their American counterparts, because they have no porches: they live on council estates or in terraces in ex-industrial towns. But they may fly flags on their cars when the English football team is playing. They are poorly educated; their children are outperformed by immigrants at school, and prone to early pregnancy. They eat too much heart-attack food (though no squirrel gumbo). They drink in working men’s clubs and pubs that don’t have chalkboard daily menus. They keep terrifying dogs. They are savagely parodied by comedians: they are known as “pikeys” or “chavs”— terms which, unlike “redneck”, have not been defiantly reclaimed by those they apply to—or as “white-van man”. Where the American redneck is immortalised in “The Dukes of Hazzard”, these lives are chronicled in “Auf Wiedersehen, Pet” and “Boys from the Blackstuff”, two iconic 1980s television series.
So there we go, a complete class stigmatised in one short paragraph; any English nationalists reading will be also delighted to see how the writer deals with the whole English/British identity question.
I think I’ll be soon switching to Mackenzie and The Sun for a more nuanced view of our political scene and society.