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Dragged off the wokewagon.


A CROWD OF angry early morning commuters at an East End tube station drag two Extinction Rebellion protestors off the top of the train and rough them up. They also turn on two of the group’s media teams on the platform.

Clips of the event flash immediately through millions of social media apps and a nation cheers.

After a fortnight of having to put up with demonstrations, delays, bad drumming and even worse performance art in central London, the populace finally had the chance to take advantage of the absence of police to enact their own justice on the righteous rabble messing up their lives.

Extinction Rebellion claim the two men who staged their failed intervention had acted independently of the group, which had decided not to protest on the underground. Too bad. That’s what you get when you authorise members to act autonomously if they wish. One of the major mistakes these renegade ecowarriors made was their failure to understand that a mob of angry passengers would not have treated a couple of female protestors in the same way. Next time they want to try this trick they should give it to the girls.

The behaviour of these useful idiots is a marvellous education in human psychology and political manipulation. It’s all there…

The behaviour of these useful idiots is a marvellous education in human psychology and political manipulation. It’s all there: mass hysteria, millenarianism, indoctrination, misinformation, sanctimoniousness, class snobbery, narcissism and exhibitionism,and  colossal lack of self-awareness. Beneath all that I also suspect there’s a playing out of a Jungian drama of archetypes, some primitive paganism expressing itself through the semi-ritualistic performances and wearing of ridiculous garb whose style is cribbed from popular feminist tv series.

Perhaps they’re responding to the promptings of the great Earth Mother herself (whatever happened to Gaia?) but unwittingly to her darker and more destructive side, that smothering, over-protective side that results in her devouring her own spawn. For all their spoutings about “the planet” they’re desperately devoid of understanding how any of this relates to everyday realities. Nothing is more certain than that any society following their demands will eventually find itself adrift in the kind of poverty and misery none of these Maenads and their male eunuchs could imagine.

But at least interventions of this kind allow the kids to emote publicly and garner virtue brownie points with their friends and tutors. The majority of protestors both during the school strikes and in the demonstrations seem to be female, so no wonder they like the drama and dressing up. Expressing your feelings and being “passionate” about things is an essential part of the modern way, isn’t it? Plus you get to share your right-on passionateness with celebs who suddenly come out in favour of environmental action and turning the world vegan even if they’ve stuffed their bank accounts with cash from advertising Heathrow or air-polluting cars and don’t seem to know the difference between vegan and vegetarian.

Professional ecowarriors and media whores can also get in on the act. Thus George (“Squirrel Eater”) Monbiot grinned his way into arrest and greenie martyrdom on the tarmac alongside Jonathan Bartley, co-leader of the Green Party. What japes, eh? Saving the planet one arrest at a time. All we need now is for Chris Packham and Sir David Attenborough to turn up and glue themselves together on the railings outside parliament.

Politicians, of course, have no immunity to this kind of propaganda, presumably because they want to be in with whatever the in-crowd happens to be into, especially if the kids are down with it. Lincoln City Council fell for it, deciding to declare a “Climate Emergency”: no surprise since the council is controlled by a gaggle of Labour apparatchiks and they’re suckers for anything that smacks of rebellious anti-capitalism. No such excuse, though, for North Kesteven District Council (mine own) which did the same despite being controlled by Independents — who ought to know better.

That about sums up the current state of British political life — people who should know better but who clearly don’t, bending to the whims of intolerant, noisy minorities. When it’s left to the majority who are the Great Ignored there’s no such phoney posturing. They know what’s best, and that includes dragging arrogant authoritarians off the top of tube trains and roughing them up. More of it, please.

suxcoverCurrente Calamo columnist, poet and writer Michael Blackburn lives in Lincolnshire. A Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Lincoln University (2005 – 2008), his poetry has appeared in numerous publications and anthologies over the years, including Being Alive (Bloodaxe) and Something Happens, Sometimes Here (Five Leaves Press). His most recent book is Albion Days (perennisperegrinator press). Sucks to Your Revolution is a collection of his Fortnightly columns.

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