Of England – without prejudice and without affection


What is “post-industrial society”?

Champions of “civil society” in Russia keep talking that they would love to build a “post-industrial” society in their country. They ordinarily omit to decode just what kind of society they are talking about, but as an example, they often point to countries of “the golden billion.” Curiously enough, in those very countries the expression in question is used extremely rarely, and then usually in some kind of critical context. For example, Stanley Hoffmann, an American scholar of international relations, wrote once: whenever you don’t know what to call some phenomenon, you use the word “post”, for example post-Cold-War World, post-liberalism or “post-industrial society.”

To Russian ideologues, this expression is a find, since it allows them to avoid using the word “capitalism” with all the negative connotations that are tied to it. In actual fact, all countries of “the golden billion” are capitalist states in essence, while in form they are indeed “post-industrial.” The latter means that the structure of the economy is changed: the share of manufacturing and agriculture has declined dramatically in favor of the so-called “tertiary” sector, i.e. the service industry which includes education, science, commerce, office work, banking. 70% to 80% of the working population in Western Europe and North America is employed in this sphere. This proportion is reflected also in the structure of the GDP, where the service sector’s weight is the same 70-80%. The calculation is pretty crude, since it is rather hard to determine the boundary between the production and the service spheres. The essence is clear nonetheless: the indicated states produce more in the way of services than in the way of physical goods. It is these societies that are called “post-industrial.”

Here are the figures for Russia, for the year 2003 (data from the Russian State Committee for Statistics): the sphere of physical goods production employed 48,7% of all labor resources, with the other 52,3% being employed in the services sphere; in the GDP, the goods sector accounted for 35,1%, and services – for 64,9%. The former figure in the first set may be evidence simply of Russia’s lower labor productivity in manufacturing and agriculture compared to Western countries. In the second set, the figures are not cardinally different from those in the West. In other words, the “post-industrial society,” that golden dream of Mr. Yavlinsky and his ilk, already exists in Russia. So what does it change? Suppose the country’s current leadership will succeed some time from now in reducing the share of manufacturing and agriculture even further, while the share of the services sphere grows to its current Western proportions. Will that mean that everything in Russia will be just like in the West? Well, no, of course not. All these “what-if-ists” must understand one simple thing: Russia will never be just like the West, no matter what version the society’s development follows, if only because the West never experiences 40-degree cold or 40-degree heat. Whenever these temperature extremes do occur (extremely rarely) anywhere in the West, the land is paralyzed.

Suppose, however, that through some miracle Russia does manage to build a civilized capitalism in accordance with the principles of civil society and the laws of market economics – like in the United Kingdom, for instance. That country is considered an etalon of sorts among all the states of Western Europe and North America, as its economy functions better than all others, and the democracy is as advanced as it gets. Let us see then what will Russia acquire if it ever manages to create a “post-industrial society” of the British type.

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I never researched England in particular. My attitude toward that country was formed by German literature, in particular the articles by Heinrich Heine who described the land and its inhabitants in a sarcastic manner. I never liked the United Kingdom’s foreign policy. Still, only a fool can fail to appreciate the works of Shakespeare – or rather the team who wrote under that name – as well as those of many other poets and writers of the foggy Albion. Neither could I help feeling respect for the constellation of English scientists whose discoveries helped accelerate the pace of mankind’s development. Nonetheless, England remained foreign to me in spirit and in temperament, and I had no desire to visit it.

Yet it so happened that I found myself in England and lived there for exactly four years. This proved to be more than enough for me, and I left the land with no sadness and no regrets.

Here is my home village… or, making acquaintances

Upon arriving in England I settled in one of the affluent “hamlets” of Oxford-shire, a ten-minute drive away from Oxford. To my surprise, I found myself among very pleasant neighbors who volunteered right away to help me become integrated into “the society.” My wife and I were surprised by this, for we had read and heard a lot about the coldness, aloofness, standoffishness of the English people. Subsequently I did meet a lot of Englishmen possessed of these qualities (especially among college instructors), but the people of our village were different from the book stereotypes. At the various local festivals held at the village Club (the Millennium Hall) they comported themselves quite emotionally. The attitude toward us “newcomers” was special: they introduced us personally to every resident of the neighborhood, invited us to house parties, looked after the house in our absence, expressed their willingness to help in every way. Still, friendship (in the Russian sense of the word) did not work out with any of them. The initial mutual visiting petered out eventually, the main reason being that we had no topics in common for conversation. My knowledge of gardening was only good for five minutes of talk at most. Whenever I touched on a topic outside the sphere of everyday life, the reply was the standard «really?» – which means, in the purely English interpretation, “this is of no interest to us.” It is “of no interest” because they practically don’t read anything and don’t know anything about other countries and even about their own country. One neighbor of ours did borrow one of the books I wrote, but later admitted that he couldn’t finish reading it. I want to stress that those locals’ incomes place them in the upper stratum of the “middle class,” which class is nothing other than ordinary average consumers. It is they who constitute the greater part of the “tertiary sector.” For the most part this consumer possesses extremely limited knowledge and devotes his entire life to “home and garden.” However, unlike the Russian counterpart who is ordinarily mean and envious, the English philistine is good-natured due to his rather high standard of living.

I did not become closely acquainted with any workers. However, I do know from newspapers that they live in horrid conditions, especially in the north of England; that they fall ill and die at a dramatically higher rate than the middle and upper classes of the land.

Non-scientific science, ideology and propaganda

In Oxford I got to socialize often with scholars, primarily with Russia specialists. Reading their works and communicating with them enabled me to realize as if physically the expressions “bourgeois scientists” and “bourgeois science” – phrases that were in use during the Soviet times. Within the framework of social disciplines (political science, sociology, international relations, etc.) there is indeed no science to be found there – if one understands this word to mean the search for truth. The matter is, they don’t even give any thought to the question of what is scientific truth. All their research is wound around ideological clichés, primarily two magical words: democracy and markets. Thus, one Oxford professor, an authority in Russia studies, wrote a thick volume on Gorbachev – giving the man high marks, naturally, for introducing democracy to the USSR. However, it did not occur to him to analyze what democracy did to the country. In general, all these professors are usually specialists in some narrow topic: one specializes in the work of the current parliament, another – in Chechnya, a third – in mass media. This applies not only to Russia scholars, but to all country scholars in general. They have practically no works of summarizing nature, which is easy to explain. Firstly, they have no scientists capable of grasping and analyzing the USSR/Russia as an integrity. They don’t operate with criteria for evaluating various events. Neither do they have any scientific method – unless, that is, one counts the occasional use of systemic or structural approaches, which are only good for solving a certain class of problems. Secondly, they are ideologically engaged to an extreme degree, which prevents them from evaluating events and facts objectively. Thirdly, most of them don’t know Russian, therefore for sources they use digests for the most part – that is, extracts from English-language newspapers; they also interview some scholars or others during their trips to Moscow. Those who do know the Russian language only make use of contemporary Russian bourgeois literature by authors who cast in their lots with the current regime. They deliberately avoid the critical left-wing literature. This approach is applied not only to Russia, but to China as well: their writings on China are equally nonsensical.

Against the backdrop of the social-studies books, the natural science works stand out. In this sphere science manifests itself in full measure, albeit there is a lot of waste paper to be found here as well.

In other words, my practice convinced me yet again that Lenin was correct in saying: bourgeois natural scientists can be trusted for as long as they stay on their science ground, while bourgeois social scientists cannot be trusted at all.

Censorship. The ideological engagement of the social-studies literature is also manifested in censorship. Formally it is not there, yet in fact it exists, and it functions very effectively. The matter is, the fact of a book’s publication has no importance whatsoever until it advertised on television or in nation-wide magazines and newspapers. No work – not even a tiny review – will ever be advertised if it attacks the “sacred” values of democracy and markets. For example, the magazines Foreign Affairs (the USA), The Economist (the UK) and several others were unwilling (exactly so!) to publish a review of one of my works, since it appeared to reveal the detrimental effect of “democracy” on Russia. Apparently, “freedom of speech” has long outlived its usefulness. At least it does not exist in the “post-industrial” society.

In general the British press creates the impression that no one works in the country – that there are no workers or farmers there. There are only the Queen with her family, bankers, footballers and musicians. The vast majority of materials is dedicated to scandals, savage murders, and recently to terrorists as well. Naturally, no one uncovers the social causes that disrupt the peaceful life of the British people. Various problems do get raised, of course, in some way or another in the newspaper pages, but they drown in the sea of advertisements, entertainments and scandalous stories. One has to admit that in the business of brainwashing, the British press did indeed achieve “shining heights.” Their ideological propaganda works flawlessly.

Religion and cheese

There is, however, one quality that I do like about the English people: it is their relaxed attitude toward religion. There is a well-known old French joke: “The French have one God and 300 varieties of cheese; the English have just one kind of cheese and 300 gods.” Jeremy Paxman, the author of a popular book about the English, reminds the reader that even in the middle of the 19th century two thirds of Londoners did not attend church. Indifference to religion was one of the main factors in the lead taken by England in its historical development. Religion was successfully replaced by science which reached its peak during the 19th and early 20th centuries. There is a reason why England produced the greatest number of scientists among those who had a revolutionary influence on the development of science and technology in the world.

In the 20th century the importance of religion declined in all advanced countries, but the pace of this process was apparently most intense in Britain, which fact British priests themselves are forced to admit with bitterness. Thus, The UK Christian Handbook: Religious Trends (2004) indicates that in the last 15 years the number of believers declined by more than a million, and by 2005 there will only be 5.6 million left. In that same period the number of church buildings decreased by 1,400, and the number of priests – by 1,000. The numbers of churchgoers are also falling. Only about 19% of English protestants go to church at least once a month.[1] In Catholic countries this percentage is much higher: in Spain and Austria – 35%, in Slovakia, Portugal and Italy – over 50%, in Ireland – 67%, in Poland – a whopping 78%. However, in Catholic France only about 12% of the French show piety, preferring the cafe to the church. One should keep in mind that to many people the church is less a place of worship than a place for socializing with acquaintances.

Many churchmen realize that the Bible can no longer satisfy modern thinking, which is oriented toward science by time itself. Therefore they seek to concentrate the attention of the “servants of God” on the moral aspects of the Biblical teaching, for example the teaching about family and the upbringing of children. This makes some amount of sense, although the English authors of a text on atheism point out that since many students don’t believe in God, they accordingly mistrust the moral values prescribed in the Bible as God’s commandments. Be that as it may, religious topics don’t get serious attention from the English people. Other kinds of problems cause them serious concern.

Problem-plagued Britannia

Education. This is one of the sore topics constantly discussed in the press. First of all, attention is drawn to the cardinal differences between public and private schools. The former graduate a large percentage of illiterate students. By the way, according to UN data, 21.8% of the United Kingdom’s population is considered “functionally illiterate” (The Guardian, January 11, 2005, p. 21).  Fairly recently it was discovered that suicides among students occur at a very high rate in public schools.

In higher schools, during 2003-2004 a wave of closures hit the natural sciences faculties (mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology). Universities are starved for cash. At the same time, tuition is increased annually, and at the same time employment is becoming harder to find for graduates. The press reports this phenomenon: due to lowered admission requirements and the departures of qualified faculty (due to law pay) many graduates emerge totally uneducated.

The example of the current state of education in the United Kingdom (which, by the way, is better in some aspects than that in other European states) convinces one yet again of the superiority of the systemic public mandatory free (!) education in the Soviet Union.

Health care is another sore topic; I experienced the British version of this problem myself. The so-called “general practitioner” (= “family doctor”) accords ten to fifteen minutes at most to each patient, with five minutes of that number spent on filling in forms and other paperwork, and if you did not get the needed treatment in those scant minutes, you have to book another visit for another day. The knowledge level of the public-sector physicians is infamous, as noted with alarm in the British press. There are, of course, different physicians and different hospitals. Moreover, their differ depending on the geographic location: worse in the North, better in the South. For example, Oxford-shire is considered one of the best places as health care is concerned. Nonetheless, I experienced the quality of that health care firsthand.

My osteochondrosis of the shoulder joint flared up. I went to a clinic and told the doctor of my malady. She replied by asking: “What is osteochondrosis?” I was in shock. They told me later, though, that this “physician” had only recently graduated, so she didn’t have experience yet. On the recommendation of a different physician, I went to a professional masseuse to get treatment for my “chondrosis.” A charming lady was indeed receiving patients in a beautifully appointed office, radiating calm with the whole look of her. She traced the causes of all illnesses to the spine, as evidenced by the set-up: spines of all degrees of curvature were on display in the reception room. This pro spent about a half-hour writing down the history of my ailments, starting from the date of birth; after that for about 15 minutes she proceeded to crack her fingers practically without touching me, as if pretending to straighten the spine. After the séance she warned me not to drive for a certain time, on account of possible dizziness (?). Naturally, I was feeling nothing except for the disappearance of ₤80 from my wallet in exchange for some shaking of the air; that fact really did make me somewhat dizzy.

My rounds of physicians continued. Now I needed an X-ray of the knee joint. I had to wait for two months (if my need had been for an ophthalmologist or an otolaryngologist, I would have had to wait three to four months.) Once they made the X-ray, the diagnosis was: bursitis. (By the way, in a elite pay clinic in Moscow the diagnosis was: osteochondrosis of the knee.) In actual fact it was a tear of the meniscus; I learned that later, from different physicians in a different country. That’s British free health care for you.

Private health care is different: the reception takes 20 to 30 minutes and costs about ₤200. I mean the initial reception in a private clinic that involves consultation only – not analyses or operations. Treatment means entirely different kind of money. However, they do offer excellent coffee for free! When you leave, they tell you “come again for sure if anything is unwell” with a sincerest smile from ear to ear. Next time will cost another ₤200.

I also had to deal with their dentistry and actual treatment: a tooth started hurting, and I was in need of fixing it. A dentist in London (a Russian, by the way) told me that in my case the treatment will cost between ₤3,000 and ₤10,000. I did not allow him to touch my tooth and flew to Canada, where I went to my old dentist who did everything much cheaper and faster – in just one visit.

Back to figures. In average life expectancy the United Kingdom ranks 29th in the world. This is not so bad, considering that Russia, for example, ranks 91st. This figure hides a certain twist, however: the average lifespan is very high in the south of the country and much lower in the north (in Scotland, in Ireland). Moreover, within London city limits life expectancy differs between districts – by as much as 10 to15 years.

I am compelled to state yet again: even under “the worst kind of socialism,” health care in the USSR was better than in today’s civilized United Kingdom by an order of magnitude. Suffice it to remind that in the Soviet Union every working person got two free medical checkups per year (the physicians came to people’s workplaces with all their equipment). Just one such checkup in the UK would cost me ₤10,000 at least.

The third sore issue in the UK (judging by the number of publications in four newspapers: The Times, The Guardian, The Independent, and The Daily Mirror) is transportation. Firstly, it is extremely expensive (compared to all other advanced countries); secondly, it is unreliable (arrivals are constantly late, departures are constantly delayed); thirdly, it is torturous (the routes are clogged, and the roads are always under repair – tax monies at work.) The only thing that gives one joy is the culture of driving; they are gentlefolk, after all.

Neither does the British “post-industrial society” manage to control the growth of crime. For example, in 2001-2002 the number of crimes reached 5,525,316; the following year, it was 5,899,450. The gravest crimes are the fastest growing categories – most notably murders. While murder rates are declining in Germany and France, in the UK the rate is going up. Some believe this is due to the fact that in the UK young men and women consume more hard liquor than in any other West European country. At any rate, the newspapers carry many stories of murders committed “for no apparent reason,” simply out of boredom.

Rather less is written on the problem of deformation of the traditional family, though the consequences thereof may prove more perilous than the problems mentioned above. British sources indicate a stable trend toward a lower proportion of marriages (including “cohabiting couples”) with children – from 92% in 1971 to 73% in 2002 – and a growing proportion of single parents – from 8% to 27% respectively. The proportion of single mothers who never married also grew dramatically – from 1% in 1971 to 12% in 2002. The proportion of divorced mothers grew in the same time period from 6% to 12%. (Living in Britain 2002, published 2004).

Another aspect of negative consequences, having to do in this case with the new model of family, i.e. the “co-habiting couple,” is evident in the social-economic sphere. In the United Kingdom, for example, such couples – accounting for almost 21% of all “families” in the land – have very low incomes. (Among traditional families, 7.8% subsist on such low incomes; among single mothers – 76,4%.) (The Sunday Times, April 18, 2005). This results in a phenomenon that is very embarrassing to wealthy Britain: child poverty, which affects over 20% of all children in  the United Kingdom, or 3.2 million children. (This topic is analyzed in detail in my book On Love, Family and the State (Moscow, 2006.)

“Service” in the services-based economy

To me personally, the main problem in the UK was British service.

You see, whenever one buys a more or less major item the product is delivered not at once, but some time later. This is quite understandable in the conditions of “post” societies: keeping products stored in warehouses is much cheaper than having them occupy floor space in stores. Some tiny store-offices make all their sales through catalogues. One salesperson takes orders and requests, another transmits the information to the warehouse, while the deliveries are made by drivers and loaders – people who have nothing to do with the selling. I simply must describe here my experience of purchasing a desk in Oxford town. Having formalized the purchase, made the payment and signed off on the delivery date (5 days later), we received the table… sans one leg. “Embarrassed” by this development, the delivery man promised to deliver the leg in 5 (!) days – for the whole procedure of ordering was to be repeated again. They delivered the leg right on time – only it belonged to a different table. We were told: “pardon us,” the leg will be delivered next week. Next week, nothing at all was delivered. So once again, the iterations were repeated: phone call –  order placed – apologies… To cut the story short, the table purchase took more than three weeks.

The funniest books can be written on the topic of buying, selling and repairing electronics in the UK. It is a topic ever so vital. My encounter with computer service in England was of rather unusual nature: I needed my English-writing apparatus Russified. We could have performed the installation ourselves on an amateurish level; however, we decided to spare our time and brought the computer over to a workshop that advertised precisely this kind of services. The “experts” promised to accomplish the task in a week (?), assuring us that it was no problem at all. “Just wait, we shall call you.” We decided to wait just so that all software is “adjusted” professionally. However, a week later the work was not done – and it still was not done another week later. When I made a wrathful phone call to inquire as to the reasons for the delay, I heard: “sorry, all is ready – do come over.” The invoice was made out, lying beside my computer that was covered with a thick layer of dust. Before paying, we asked them to switch the computer on so that we may check – and what do you know: it still was unable to read Russian script… I was indignant: what was I supposed to pay for? “Sorry, I won’t pay” is what I told them.

Capitalism – not just the British kind, but the universal kind, including its “post” variety – has one obvious specific trait: for as long as you are a potential buyer, you are desirable, and you receive smiles and top-quality coffee for absolutely free. However, as soon as the merchandise is transferred to the buyer’s hands and money has changed hands in the opposite direction, all smiles disappear, and the salespeople form ranks to make an invincible fortress. No kind of guarantee is capable of resolving the emerging problems effectively (that is, quickly and based on the consumer-protection law.) This isn’t because the people working in these “post”- and simply- capitalisms are so bad – on the contrary, they are nice, charming people; it’s just that the system forces them to follow the rules of business cruelty. Money – goods – people – services – connections – all this is merely products, meaning money – such is the sole idea of capitalism. I am not the first to write of this; I merely confirm what is well known, and I want to stress yet again that this is the road to degeneration of people and eventually of society itself. This process is particularly evident in culture and the arts.

Degeneration of culture as a symptom of the nation’s degeneration

Art and culture certainly do exist in the UK – as rare hearths against the backdrop of the so-called pop-culture for the masses. The “orthodox” who stick to the norms of human morals have become critically few. Thanks to the democratic freedom of choice, primitive instincts are ascending at a fearful pace to domination over education and human upbringing, over knowledge and morals. On television, the saturation with sex is off the scale (horny bimbos entice viewers from the screen, inviting to “get together”); fortune tellers and magicians of all stripes compete in the art of doing EVERYTHING (in this respect, Russia is just where a “post-industrial society” should be); crazed musicians, unacquainted with soap and shampoo, work themselves into copious sweat. Television channels invite viewers to join the grand parties of the swinging youth. Loose drunk babes (impossible to believe that this is happening in England) and blokes are happy in their choice to live like that. The freedom of choice also bore its fruit in the “modern” attitude toward same-sex marriage – a phenomenon that has become legalized and quite accepted in society. There is also support (no condemnation, at least) for the “philosophy” of naked old men and women who want to mow their lawns and play in their gardens in the buff. The President of the British Naturism Society claims that “when you go nude, you get the feeling of freedom.” Obviously, no one feels as free as animals, and these will soon be joined by large numbers of Britons.

The example of the British nation confirms the historical phenomenon: as soon as a nation – or the greater part of it – looses the ability to tell good from bad, ceases to understand what is in conformity with the laws of nature and society, and what is in opposition to them – this nation dooms itself to disintegration. One of the signs that the laws of morals and nature are violated is the bacchanalia of sex accompanied by all sorts of perversions. All this leads to the nation’s degeneration. Degeneration, however, is also underway in the literal sense.

Britons are now dying out physically. The white population is decreasing due to the disintegration of the traditional family and, as a consequence, a sharp drop in the birth rate. The surrogate same-sex families are simply a dead-end option of society. The total population figure is unchanged for many years now at about 61 million people; however, this is entirely due to the inflow of immigrants and their reproduction rates. White-skinned Anglo-Saxons will soon become a minority; the threat is very real. Whenever anyone complains about the immigrant Muslims’ desires to establish their ways of life on British soil, the palefaces protest loudly; yet it is precisely the laws of the democratic post-industrial state that are bringing the state down.

Democracy without borders

In the opinion of proponents of capitalism, one of the noteworthy qualities of the “post-industrial society” is advanced democracy. Democracy is one of the forms of political organization, one that emerged already in the slaver society. Democracy has many forms; bourgeois democracy is one of them. The latter, in turn, comes in many varieties. British democracy is considered to be the most perfect kind among all advanced capitalist countries. This may well be true, though some believe that democracy is even more advanced in the socialist countries of Scandinavia. That is beside the point, however; the point is that today’s version of democracy has become a mechanism that advances the destruction of the state. This is manifested in different spheres of social life.

On first glance, the practice of political correctness in language is its single most harmless manifestation. It is common knowledge that feminists have succeeded long ago in replacing “masculine” words such as “businessman” and “chairman” with the gender-neutral “businessperson” and “chairperson”; “postman” was replaced with “postal worker.” Now feminists are at a loss whether to write “he or she” or “she or he.” Frightened by the linguistic assault, the employees of the English National Opera expelled from their lexicon the word “darling,” since it may be construed by someone as sexual harassment. This for you is rights equality between men and women in an advanced democracy.

Now for the social sphere. In the 1980-ies the word “underprivileged” was introduced to designate the recipients of “benefits,” since the word “unemployed” supposedly affected negatively the mental state of the “underprivileged” persons. Another euphemism for unemployment became popular: “a person between jobs.”

In those same years, verbal changes were introduced to the sphere of international relations: the word “backward” was replaced with “under-developed,” then “under-developed” was replaced with “developing,” and then “developing” was replaced with “Third World.”

At present, the main thrust of attacks is directed against those words and idioms that may suggest negative connotations to ethnic minorities. For example, the use of the expression «good egg» (meaning: good lad) is discouraged, since it supposedly originated from the expression «egg and spoon», which rhymes with a derogatory word used to designate African-Americans (God forbid using the word “Negroes”.)

In actual fact, all these euphemisms are not harmless at all. So-called politically correct language conceals elementary lies intended to change reality. Back in his time, the well-known English commentator Bernard Levin wrote: “We change the names of things we dislike. Thus we attempt to convince ourselves that through this we changed the phenomena themselves. However, no man can change reality just by manipulating words. So why do we do this? It is because reality is often unhealthy.” (The Times, August 10, 2004, p. 16).

Levin underestimates the power of such manipulations. In actual fact this is a form of ideological treatment of mass consciousness in order to soften or iron out the contradictions of capitalism, to neutralize its most negative aspects with words. This is precisely why Russian liberals favor the expression “post-industrial society” in place of “capitalism” or “imperialism” – words that provoke the most negative emotions in many people. These word games are even more significant when used against socialism. For example, it is for a reason what the foes of socialism call the Great October Socialist Revolution a “coup.” They thus attempt to belittle a historical event that changed the course of world history in the 20th century and became the hope not only to the population of the newborn country, but also to many downtrodden in the West and in the East.

In the USA, where “political correctness of language” goes to absurd lengths, the Department of Education had the names of many of America’s great men banished from history texts. The “proscribed” list includes, for example, Samuel Adams, Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, the brothers Wright, and many others. The reason offered is that some of these men were slave owners, while others fought against Indians, and still others made unfavorable pronouncements about Negroes. Thus language is capable of distorting history – at least it can do that in the heads of the philistines who comprise the majority of the population in any country.

Now for some more serious matters. It is common knowledge that immigration is growing in advanced countries, including the UK, and most of the immigrants are Muslims. Their numbers are growing inexorably. They practically don’t assimilate at all, retaining their old customs, culture and religion. The problem is, they are not content with just reproducing their way of life; they are now attempting to impose it on the aboriginals, for example the Britons in the UK. Of course, the two cultures are incompatible in principle. However, instead of forcefully putting the immigrants in their place (they are guests, after all, and uninvited ones at that), the Britons started debating the forms of their actions in Parliament, trying not to violate any democratic principles. Since the Muslim immigrants absolutely fail to grasp the meaning of Western democratic values, they see the Britons’ mild response as a weakness, and that only serves to stimulate the newcomers to even more aggressive behavior. In view of the white population’s rapid decrease, one may surmise that soon enough the immigrants will outnumber the locals (today their share of the population is 5-6%, whereas in other countries of Western Europe the figure is 10-12%). Then all forms of democracy will come to an end, and it will be replaced with a Muslim regime based on the will of Allah and on other feudal norms.

Finally, today’s boundless democracy legitimized and accorded equal civil rights to gay and lesbian marriages. This anti-natural phenomenon – an appendix, a dead-end, ruinous branch of development in the history of biological life – serves the afore-mentioned trend, i.e. the decrease of the white population.

Thus, contemporary democracy turned into a political regime that can no longer contain the disintegration of the state. It has outlived its historic usefulness. A different form of political structure of power is needed, one that conforms to the new phenomena of the 21st century. Should the United Kingdom fail to develop a new type of regime, the “post-industrial society” is in danger of turning into a feudal society of the Middle Eastern type.

I did not touch in this article on social and economic problems; for the analysis thereof would have resulted in a substantially increased volume. I want only to make two points here in thesis form.

Today’s Britons owe their economic prosperity to their ancestors who managed to conquer nearly half the world in their time. Although the British colonial empire fell apart, the former colonies stayed in the orbit of the British economy, continuing to feed and clothe their master. The methods of pillaging changed, but the essence did not. The Third World continues to supply everything necessary (agricultural products, raw materials, metals, etc.) for the survival and relative prosperity of the “post-industrial society” in the UK. The flip side of this prosperity, however, is that the Britons themselves are no longer capable of reproducing themselves as a nation. The average Briton has lost the habit of working. When he needs to drive a nail into the wall or plug into the power supply, he calls for tradesmen (who are immigrants for the most part.) The “post-industrial society” resembles a man with a huge head but no arms or legs – and soon he will be without a trunk.

Moreover, potentially explosive hotbeds are now emerging within this society in the form of “Third World” enclaves. The proportion of the population existing below the absolute poverty line ($11 per day in advanced countries) is 15.7%. The wealthiest 10% “earn” 14 times the amount earned by the bottom 10% of the population. And so on, and so forth.

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So, we are now facing the “post-industrial society” with all its minuses and pluses. We may consider that the main plus is the rather vast middle class enjoying a rather high average standard of living. This plus is overlaid, however, with a lot of minuses in the spheres of education, health care, transportation, crime, terrible service, etc. The most important minus is the moral degradation and the political impotency in the face of new challenges. This whole set of problems is also characteristic of all other “post-industrial societies” of Western Europe, to greater or lesser degree. Evidently these societies have passed their peak of development and started tumbling downhill. This downfall usually starts with the crisis of morals and ends either with the destruction of the state – or its qualitative renewal through revolution. Since Britons are not fond of revolutions, they appear to be doomed to the former outcome.

Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer – the number two man in the Labour government – said at his party’s convention (in late September 2005): «Reflect for a moment: on the talent wasted…the great music never composed, the great art never created, the great science never invented, the great books never written.» (The Economist, October 1st, 2005, p.11). Reflect for even just a second: everything said above relates to the “post-industrial society” that is the dream of the liberal democrats in Russia. Does Russia need this kind of society? I doubt that; however, it is for Russians to decide.

Alex Battler

Paris, France

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