samedi 17 mars 2012

Post-Thatcher Britain: Corporatist Champion of Pathologies and the Soviet Union with Supermarkets

In April 2011, the Flemish think tank Libera! awarded its annual Prize for Liberty, or Liberty Award, to British conservative author and social critic Theodore Dalrymple. During the ceremony at the Catholic University of Louvain, the recipient delivered the traditional Gustave de Molinari Lecture. This is his acceptance speech.

(Sound for the first minute or so is a bit faint, it is much clearer afterwards)

"Let me disabuse you of the notion peddled by the French [Blog’s note: and Canadian] press, a notion that is the sign of its laziness, its intellectual torpor and incuriosity about economic, social and political realities outre-manche. […] Mainly, that Britain is some kind of neo-liberal state where economic freedom red in tooth and claw is quite unrestrained. To the contrary, Britain is increasingly a corporatist state which could easily be redirected into a fascist direction."

"Expenditure in Britain on education doubled between 2000 and 2007 alone, yet standards almost certainly fell. And they were already very low.

In the same years that the education expenditure was doubling, the proportion of British school children learning a foreign language never, let us be frank, one of the strong points of British pedagogy, declined by at least two thirds. This was because the government while it was doubling expenditures released schools from the obligation to teach foreign languages. Why did it do so? Because it wanted schools to be able to claim that the results were improving. And, since, even in our debased times, it is difficult to give a pass to a pupil in a French examination who does not know the meaning of “bonjour”, schools switched to subjects in which it was possible to pass examinations without no knowledge whatsoever.

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Soutenons les familles dans leurs combats juridiques (reçu fiscal pour tout don supérieur à 50 $)

1 commentaire:

Anonyme a dit…

« Strong public support for the welfare state, especially what Leys describes as the 'middle class sacred cows' of the NHS, tax relief on mortgage interest and maintenance grants for students, prevented any wide-ranging reforms in this crucial area. Taxation and spending at the end of. 1989 were not significantly below the 1979 levels. Social security increased in absolute terms, real terms and (for most of the period) as a proportion of GNP. This was a direct result of arguably the most visible change of all during the Thatcher years, the unintentional rise of unemployment. »