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50 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emphatic and authoritative demolition of the Blair-Brown years, 3 Mar. 2009
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This review is from: The Rotten State of Britain: Who Is Causing the Crisis and How to Solve It (Paperback)
Dr Butler has written an book whose passion does nothing to take away from its cool-headed analysis. His demolition of the Blair/Brown years embraces not merely New Labour's well-known failings: spin over substance, the nanny and surveillance state, stealth taxes and wasted money, but illustrates the emptiness of its proudest boasts: "no return to boom and bust", "education, education, education", "tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime".

He makes no bones that Blair and Brown built on weaknesses already present, in particular Britain's chronic over-centralisation, but also points to New Labour's doleful record of undermining checks on executive power in the civil service, parliament and elsewhere.

He concludes with a well-judged call for central government to retreat from responsibilities which it cannot discharge. His book is far better qualified to set a pre-election agenda (and far more moral) than Will Hutton's 1996 diatribe, from which it takes its name.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 31 May 2009 13:23:46 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Aug 2012 19:40:40 BDT
I am in total agreement with the author as to the deteriorating condition of our country, and others throughout the Western World; but feel that the root of the problem goes far deeper than the mistakes/incompetence of the Blair/Brown years. If one seeks for historic parrallels with the modern age, the declining years of the Roman Empire come unbidden to mind.

Then as now, an immense and apparently powerful world civilization seemed only to have lost it's way. Then as now a tiny group of financial racketeers profited unbelievably by obscene methods, slavery/importation and exploitation of low paid immigrants. Blatant corruption in the Senate/Parliament went not only unpunished, but was protected by an equally corrupt Praetorian Guard/Police Force.

Then as now the once invincible Legions/Western armed forces, struggled even to deal with minor conflicts on the empires frontiers Germania & Parthia/Iraq & Afganistan, Vietnam & Korea. As the Roman Empire weakened they gave tribute, the West gives 'foreign aid'. Then as now the slave/immigrant based economy stalled, producing a situation with both unviably low wages and mass unemployment; which in turn led to a collapse in the indigenous birthrate, ethnic conflict and the social chaos of mass family breakdown, along with the associated crime, ignorance, drunkeness etc....

Then as now, while Rome floundered, by comparison the rival powers grew ever stronger in real terms:-
Europe's population 1910:- 380millions, industrial growth 2-3% Europe 2010 :-400millions, industrial growth rate 3% (Nil since 2008!).
Chinese population 1910:- 400millions, industrial growth nil China 2010:- 1,200millions industrial growth rate of 10%+ per year!
Indian population 1910:- 360million, industrial growth nil India 2010:- 1,100millions industrial growth rate reaching 8% per year.

In ancient Rome, the inevitable discontent that came with the economic and social chaos was 'controlled' by a huge army of state spies, paid a paltry wage to protect property, watch/inform on their neighbours and spead stories of how successful recent Government actions had been; highly reminicent of our security, surveillance camera, phone tapping and mass media industries?

We all know how Rome's once great Empire finally ended; the Rhine froze and waves of starving heavily armed Germanic barbarians surged into Roman Gaul; neither the ineffective, poorly equipped legions or the disarmed 'citizenry' could resist the tide; the wealthy fled with what loot they could carry and the Empire was gone.
The word's of Patrick J Buchanan, senior adviser to three American presidents and twice runner for the Republican presidential nomination provide an ominous but accurate conclusion to this comment. I quote:-

All about us we can see clearly now that the West is passing away....Not one European nation, save Muslim Albania, has a birthrate that will enable it to survive through the century. As a share of world population, people of European ancestry have been shrinking for three generations. The character of every Western nation is being irremediably altered as each undergoes an unresisted invasion from the third world. We are slowly disappearing from the Earth. Having lost the will to rule, Western man seems to be losing the will to live.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Oct 2010 13:43:31 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 6 Jul 2011 08:17:52 BDT]
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