Richard North, 10/06/2020  

It's just as well that I don't play chess very often these days. I think I might have difficulty getting used to the new rules. When black pieces cannot be taken, because 'black lives matter', and the white queen can only move one square to reduce 'white privilege', the game looks a little one-sided to me – especially when only blacks can play with black pieces.

As you might imagine, though, these rules are an invention of mine. It could not possibly happen that people could be so stupid as to mess around with a centuries-old game, just to support some notional idea of racial equality, any more than one might expect the mob to be demanding the removal of public statues because of links with slavery. Things like that simply don't happen in England.

But then neither is this a country where the BBC loses all sense of proportion and airs on its main evening TV news a full fifteen minutes of coverage of the funeral in America of a small-time criminal murdered by the police. Things like that simply don't happen in England.

And this is most definitely a country where we have National Health Services, free at the point of use. In could never be the case that the government shuts down the service, to convert it into an inadequate Covid-19 treatment service, leaving upwards of ten million people untreated, many of them condemned to death for lack of medical care. Things like that simply don't happen in England.

Nor is it even conceivable that we should see schools throughout the land closed, only for the government completely to miscalculate what it takes to get them opened up again, with 'a lost generation' at risk of losing an entire year's schooling, despite some scientists saying that lightning is a bigger risk to pupils than Covid-19. Things like that simply don't happen in England.

It is also completely unimaginable that police forces up and down the country give up enforcing the law, and instead engage in tendentious virtue signalling, 'taking the knee' in dangerously partisan displays, while applauding lawbreakers who meet with their approval. Things like that simply don't happen in England.

Who then could possibly believe that a prime minister could stand up and tell the police that they can decide whether to enforce the law, turning the police into law-makers while parliament stands idle? Things like that simply don't happen in England.

The politicians, the police and our institutions have lost their moral authority and are bowing to the mob. They are displaying a core weakness which will be seized upon and exploited. This cannot end well. When the centre rots, the edges start to crumble.

Not ever could we have imagined these things in England, from which one can only conclude that this isn't England any more. The thieves came in the night and stole it away. 

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