Wednesday, May 12, 2010

From Mod to Chav in Three Generations: Historical Footnote on the Death of the British Working Class

The traditional British Working Class came to be regarded by their masters as "redundant" for various economic and political reasons: the former role of imperial soldier was taken over by assets of the American Global Police Force, manufacturing was transferred off-shore, and the political obstacle to efficient social and economic management represented by the working class was widely recognized as an interrelated and compound problem. For these reasons (some would also emphasize "aesthetic considerations") an effort was mounted to mitigate and, eventually, remove this sector of the British population. Globalism afforded an opportunity to achieve these ends. A sector of the British working class, the hard-working lower-middle-class clerks (especially the highly-motivated class of self-styled “progressives”) would, as usual, play its functionary role; and popular media, itself enhanced by progress made early in the process by methods of cultural exploitation pioneered by the working class themselves, provided an useable instrument of control. Through Globalism, the means of production was moved to zones of enhanced profitability, and through the apparatus of the welfare system the workers were made dependent upon the state for their support and sustenance. Meanwhile, the entertainment industry provided workers with role models that valorized self-destructive behaviors. The project was successful, and within three generations the mass of the British working classes was weakened to a point where their political clout was thoroughly mitigated. Meanwhile, traditional Liberal forces--middle class traders and professionals—finding themselves discouraged by the behavior and the appearance of the working class, were alienated from it, and the traditional political, cultural and ideological ties which had previously strengthened both classes were cut. Systems of social support were now removed, and the working class, or rather the spectral shadow of the storied British Working Class, was purged.

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