For the moment we are trusting that we have won the anti EU fight, and that UK membership of that vile organisation will gradually recede into the past, although I am still worried that there may yet be backsliding. The treatment of Priti Patel is a case in point, as a politician who is very sound on the EU, and nearer to the ordinary persons' attitude to law and order than any of the Home Secretaries for decades, is under attack from a Civil Service ridden with Remainers, who think that they should determine policy, not just implement that for which the people have voted. If Boris should give in to demands to remove her it would be a very bad sign indeed.
However, for now, to turn to other matters, probably the most dangerous threat to our democracy is currently coming from the green fascists, and their promotion of climate change theories.
Incidentally we are told that these people have the support of the younger generation, as if that was a decisive factor, when in reality the latter have been poorly educated, and misled by ideologues for decades. A recent study of those aged between 16 and 29 has unearthed the following alarming facts: 12% think the Second World War ended in the 1960s, 26% thought that we fought the French, not the Germans, 21% thought that the USA was not involved at all, and 15% thought that the Battle of Waterloo took place during WW2.
Of course it is not their fault that they know so little, but is due to the so called liberal and progressive zealots in the education system, whose stupid ideas have so undermined the system we knew during the 1950s. Nevertheless, given the extent of their ignorance of basic facts, it is doubtful that we should pay any attention whatsoever to the opinions of these youngsters.
Intelligent people of 50 and over will remember Bernard Levin, who wrote many articles on a wide variety of subjects, which were published in The Times and elsewhere. In February 1990 he wrote on the subject of what he described as a new plague, the 'Single Issue Fanatic', in which he described such people as being dedicated to a 'Cause', which admits of no moderation or rational debate, and who are suffocating in self-righteousness, convinced that harassment, interference and bullying are indispensable features of their campaigns. Levin points out that such fanatics are quite incapable of accepting any counter arguments, however thoroughly researched, and however meticulously framed, that do not correspond entirely and exactly with their assertions and demands. If anyone dares to say that in their judgement the fanatics may be wrong this only inflames the latter's certainty, and strengthens their determination to call us all to heel. We saw the results of bowing the knee to such people when they forced through Probation in the USA, with the disastrous results we all know.
Can anyone doubt that Levin's description fits the extreme environmentalists who now seek to close down large parts of Western economies in their zeal for their cause. In order to promote their ideas they make absurd claims which much of the media, particularly the BBC, seems ready to accept uncritically. They assert that, unless we give in to their wishes billions will die, and even that millions are already dying. This is ridiculous, in that in 2019 some 11,000 died due to natural disasters, while in 1931 the figure was 3.7 million. The figures they give for sea level rises are just plucked out of the air, and inflated beyond belief, while assertions about changes in such matters as the number of polar bears in the Arctic are plainly untrue.
The greens claim that science is on their side, yet they ignore the fact that many eminent scientists do not agree with their theories, that there are very good reasons to question the idea that global warming is either permanent, or anthropological in origin, or that anything humans do will affect the dynamic nature of the world's climate.
They also oppose many of the solutions offered, such as nuclear power, as they clearly belong to that group who think that such plants are just the same as the nuclear bombs they hate so much, at least those in the hands of the democracies. If a more innocuous project, such as a tidal barrage is proposed, then they oppose that on the grounds of disturbing wildlife. They only seem to be happy with wind turbines, a very unreliable means of generating power. Judging by some of those interviewed on TV they expect us to walk and cycle everywhere, hardly an option for the elderly and infirm, and certainly useless when wanting to holiday in Europe and beyond, as they regard air travel as the work of the devil. It is clear that the more extreme greens will only be happy when we are back in the caves, rubbing two sticks together for warmth.
No doubt many people will be pleased by the court decision relating to a third runway at Heathrow. However those who are pleased might reflect on the fact the the vociferous pressure group pf extreme environmentalist, supported by a heavily politicised judiciary, has overturned a decision taken by our elected representatives. The precedent set means that, in future, should the inhabitants of a town who desire that a by-pass be built, or an inadequate road upgraded, and have convinced their representatives at a local and national level that this should be done, they might find that nevertheless the project is blocked by an unelected minority group. This can only be bad for democracy, as those who shout the loudest will override the wish of the silent majority.
These people are a mixture of those which we used to see wandering the streets, with their 'The End is Nigh' posters, and much more sinister illiberal, anti democratic, anarchists whose real intentions are to undermine the democracies of the West. It is noticeable that, while they constantly seek to disrupt everyday life in the UK, whether it be by digging up the lawn at Trinity College, Cambridge, or preventing working people reaching their jobs by interfering with trains, or blocking roads, they do not seem to think it appropriate to picket the Chinese Embassy, despite the fact that that country emits many times the amounts of greenhouse gases produced in Britain.
They are receiving the support of a great number of gullible, ill informed dupes, who know nothing about the scientific facts, but instead worship at the feet of a Scandinavian teenager, whom even her parents admit is suffering from mental problems. One commentator has said, she feels as if she had been asleep, and awoken in the Middle Ages, when child prophets were worshipped by superstitious peasants. The young girl is to be pitied, as she is being manipulated by malevolent groups, who are working to an anti capitalist agenda. The silly children indulging in school strikes should be made aware that, should their cause triumph, they would have to, as I did, walk, or use a bus to school (in my case a bus and a trolleybus), and give up their beloved mobile phones and tablets, as the energy used would no longer be available. I suspect their enthusiasm for green policies would disappear like the morning dew.
These extremists find support among the usual 'woke' suspects, intellectuals, broadcasters, politicians, and commentators, with a sprinkling of actors (and actresses) anxious to jump on the latest bandwagon, however ridiculous the cause. Unfortunately those who chose to break the law are also receiving tacit support from the senior levels of the police, who seem prepared to allow them to do as they please, rather than enforce the law.
Of course the idea that we should try to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels is a worthy one, given that the latter will eventually run out, and attempts to cut back enormously on the use of plastics are also praiseworthy. However we must not throw the baby out with the bathwater, as the greens would have us do. Humanity's greatest strength is the ability to adapt, and we have the capability to use our intelligence to find new ways of generating power through the means of scientific research. In the future fusion power, sun power broadcast from satellites, energy derived from temperature differences between the surface, and the depths of the earth, will all be possible in time, while, particularly in a coastal country such as the UK, tidal power, much more reliable than wind power, can be exploited.
If we wish to preserve our democracy, and the rule of law, it is time for sensible people to rise up and oppose the fanatics. I can do no better than paraphrase Bernard Levin when he drew his essay to a close. These people sow teeth and watch armed men spring up. Let us to resolve to arm ourselves in turn, and do battle.