Why is the UK so self-obsessed?
In September, Jacob Rees-Mogg was photographed almost lying down in parliament and it became a symbol of the embodiment of British arrogance (or a nicer way to put it is: Inbegriff von der Überheblichkeit der Großbritannien) and it is this topic that I will cover today.
DISCLAIMER: This article is based upon my own opinions. Additionally, I am British and I can quote and use examples I have seen, hear, experienced etc from my life there. I will try and cover some of the MANY reasons for this, but doing all and in detail would take too long.
The easiest way to start is by understanding UK history and out of the many many (ad nauseum) examples I can use; I’ll start with the easiest: the British empire. I know the following quote was concerning other things by the following quote fits too perfectly:
The important thing is not what they think of me, but what I
think of them.
There have been many reasons given for the UK forming an empire, but at its core, the main idea was to improve the homeland. The UK has committed many heinous acts through its’ history (1), some committed before and after the Victorian era and the ones who committed them have always been celebrated back in the UK. Such examples are soldiers who fought the Zulu- the Victoria cross (a very prostitutions award was created to commemorate the fallen), the designers of the bouncing bomb were also celebrated. These and further examples highlighted the importance of the UK both to citizens and internationally, showing its’ worth, which is reason 1: ‘proven’ past importance.
Additionally, to add to historical traditions we travel quickly back to 1066 and the battle of Hastings. At the end of this battle (spoilers?!?) William slain Harrold and the old royal bloodline was ended. William became king of a divided country and established a monarchy- which was the bases of following systems that still can be seen today. This system created the upper-, middle-, and working classes which created a tier system to allow anyone to know where they stand. As a quick breakdown:
- Upper: Royalty and those who are ennobled (have a title)
- Middle: Skilled and well educated (teachers, doctors etc)
- Working: the grafters and anyone else
While my description is extremely general- it gives a good oversite into a tradition what should have ended in the 1950’s. This is where reason 2 comes into its’ own: especially concerning the honourable gentleman’s actions in parliament: expectation. The UK expects to remain important, because it has been so for so very long. People expect the EU to graciously allow a perfect Brexit to occur because are we not but too important for anything else?
At time of writing on the 18th of October, the EU has agreed upon a potential Brexit deal but one of the main right-winged politicians (whom has campaigned for Brexit for the best part of 20 years) has stated that they would rather further delay it, than get it on “unjust” terms.
This self-importance has been a trait going back to Tudor Britain- not even the Scottish have been innocent of this. Any internal conflict in the UK has always used the argument of a “God-given right” to rule, wage war etc. It is an unfortunate trait the Americans also picked up (sorry about that).
So we have: expectation, proven importance and expectation- not a nice combination. But is there anything else to add?
At the end of the day, the main concern for the UK government is not just the UK but their own perceived position, and more often than not, self-gain at all levels. Shall I mention that politicians vote on their own pay rises, or campaigns (like the anti-fracking) which are defeated by a local government and at a local government level have been overturned by the government for the promise of economic growth, or shall I mention UK politicians expenses scandals, banker bonuses in failing banks, Thomas cook executives getting major bonuses even though the company has gone into administration etc etc etc.
While there are many who are tying to do good in the UK, there are many more working for an agenda and being part of a system that has some control over the UK government was never going to last. This is the last and final reason: a cultural reason- a selfish culture. If you would like a good example of this, read Harry Potter. There are many Mrs Dursley’s in the UK afterall.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this article. What do you think- love it or hate it?
Thank you for reading and as always, happy exploring,
Next: BACK TO JAPAN!!!!!