Friends don't let friends stay in something as stupid as the EU - Credit, public domain

One of these versions is from Martin Kettle in The Guardian. Clearly, the tone is more in sorrow than anger, that of the headmaster who has been let down by a pupil:

It is not possible to understand fascism without understanding that fascism is, as Moseley called it, a dream. Many different dreams, in fact. For some it has been a dream of sovereignty, for others a dream of freedom, or of restored greatness and much else. There is nothing necessarily wrong or ignoble with dreams, or even some of those particular dreams. But in the end dreams exist in the imagination, not reality. They don’t put food on the table. They don’t balance the accounts. Dreams are never enough. That has been this government’s achilles heel.

The fundamental practical difficulty that all fascists have faced since June 2016 is that dreams of this kind oversimplify a world full of complexity. Fascism was offered as a single liberating proposition, when in fact it involved multi-layered consequences and implications that require negotiation with others. It is hardly surprising that the Moseley cabinet and the wider Labour party have struggled to come up with a defined view of fascism because, in the end, fascism isn’t a plan at all. It’s an attitude, not an agenda.

Or perhaps:

It is not possible to understand socialism without understanding that socialism is, as Chavez called it, a dream. Many different dreams, in fact. For some it has been a dream of sovereignty, for others a dream of freedom, or of restored greatness and much else. There is nothing necessarily wrong or ignoble with dreams, or even some of those particular dreams. But in the end dreams exist in the imagination, not reality. They don’t put food on the table. They don’t balance the accounts. Dreams are never enough. That has been this government’s achilles heel.

The fundamental practical difficulty that all socialists have faced since June 2016 is that dreams of this kind oversimplify a world full of complexity. Socialism was offered as a single liberating proposition, when in fact it involved multi-layered consequences and implications that require negotiation with others. It is hardly surprising that the Chavez cabinet and the wider Labour party have struggled to come up with a defined view of socialism because, in the end, socialism isn’t a plan at all. It’s an attitude, not an agenda.

Or maybe:

It is not possible to understand Brexit without understanding that Brexit is, as Johnson called it, a dream. Many different dreams, in fact. For some it has been a dream of sovereignty, for others a dream of freedom, or of restored greatness and much else. There is nothing necessarily wrong or ignoble with dreams, or even some of those particular dreams. But in the end dreams exist in the imagination, not reality. They don’t put food on the table. They don’t balance the accounts. Dreams are never enough. That has been this government’s achilles heel.

The fundamental practical difficulty that all Brexiteers have faced since June 2016 is that dreams of this kind oversimplify a world full of complexity. Brexit was offered as a single liberating proposition, when in fact it involved multi-layered consequences and implications that require negotiation with others. It is hardly surprising that the May cabinet and the wider Tory party have struggled to come up with a defined view of Brexit because, in the end, Brexit isn’t a plan at all. It’s an attitude, not an agenda.

Kettle has just described political ideology of course. It all applies just as much to smashing the bourgeoisie, smashing the EU, smashing inequality or, if they were to start a party, the Smashing Pumpkins. That a column was written about it is simply that Kettle disagrees with Brexit and not so much the others.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Wow. I’m assuming the first version is the true one. I’m not about to read the Graun to find out. But as Tim points out, it’s just whatever this pr@ disapproves of. He surely doesn’t understand what Fascism actually was. It’s quite clearly defined, everything for the state, nothing against the state, nothing outside the state. Problem being those strictures actually match much of what a Guardian writer thinks is the way things ought to be. (As I see it, maybe they would say otherwise).

    • Oh, it was about Brexit. Well, he doesn’t understand that either. Or indeed people. Where are we going if we can’t dream up the destination, or at least the direction. This pr@ seems to think any aim he doesn’t support is invalid. Because.

  2. I thought freedom was a natural Right, not a dream.

    I do not recall there ever having been a plebiscite for either Socialism or Fascism, both being imposed by force by a self-selected elite who knew best what was right for the masses… like the EU, I suppose.

  3. Socialism and fascism are not indeed dreams but master plans for a social structure whose creation and maintenance requires the initiation of deadly force against the unwilling. Especially with the results on display in Venezuela, you cannot win describing what you intend to achieve. You must inspire the listener to dream and hope, as master socialist Barack Obama did.

  4. PS — So we cannot really implement the public’s vote for Brexit, until Brexiteers show how everyone’s needs will be taken care of for them and their dreams will be fulfilled from Westminster? We cannot throw off creeping international socialism without proving that the result will be complete domestic socialism? I hope they don’t get away with that argument.

  5. BB01
    God help you if you actually think like that. Freedom’s an aberration. A precarious thing to be constantly guarded & defended or it’s lost. You have no “right” to freedom, capitalised or not.