Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Paul Weller was Wrong: They Don't Always "Smell of Pubs and Wormwood Scrubs.."

A list of 13,500? Blimey, I thought: that's an awful lot. It's getting on for twice the membership of the Green Party.

& it remains an awful lot even when knowledgeable people tell me it is a vast over-estimate and maybe something closer to a contact list including ex-members. (Including one guy who left because he,"Objects to being told he shouldn't wear a bomber jacket."). But, still - doctors, teachers, police officers and prison officers. It ain't good, is it? We can laugh at them for losing the membership list and laugh even more - oh joy of joys -at them having to use the Data Protection Act to suppress it (which obviously won't work) but the real problem remains. Somehow or other, this bunch of creepy, neo-nazi losers have become the fourth party of the land.

I suspect they really are neo-nazis: whilst it is probably true Griffin still has quite enough, er, 'young men who prefer to wear bomber jackets' (sic) to hand, it is also true that he is cleverly playing a game to attempt to make the BNP the domestic functional equivalent of Haider's or even Fortuyn's parties. I tend to agree with the conclusions of this Europe wide survey from a Norwegian chap that the success of such parties is, in part at least, to do with the Left vacating the terrain of class identity. But only in part.

Nestling in that list is someone I 'm really curious about: a holistic therapist. S/he didn't join the BNP because New Labour 'abandoned the working class', I'm fairly certain. Perhaps her tarot reading told her to do it, or some inspiration came to her whilst sitting under a crystal. In any event, s/he - and the doctor, and police officers, and teachers - would seem to me to fit into the more traditional leftist expectation that it is the (jargon warning:old fashioned term coming up) petite bourgeoisie - who are most likely to form the base of fascist parties.

The trouble is, of course, that the class structure has changed; there are a lot more white collar workers who think of themselves as holding functional equivalents of 'traditional' petite bourgeois roles like shop keepers or junior managers than there were in the 1930s.

Update/cheap shot: Of course, in the 1930s, they did read the same newspapers ( thanks B&T)

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