Waiting for the Etonians : Reports from the Sickbed of Liberal England
Selected writings from one of the most important commentators of our generation covering the wreckage of Labour's 10 year love affair with the RightBY THE SUMMER of 2007, Britain was close to crashing. A few onlookers realised the danger, but Britain's political leaders were not among them. Politicians and civil servants boasted that the City's economy was booming because of their 'light-touch regulation' of workers in financial services whose number included potential frauds. Curiously, they never argued that the inner-city economy might boom if there was 'light touch regulation' of workers in the ghettos whose number included potential drug dealers.And artists produced works to match the times. On the same day that Lehman Brothers went bankrupt, the genial Damien Hirst auctioned at Sotheby's pieces he admitted had been mass produced in his studios and buyers still gave him GBP100 million. Even the critics did not pretend to be interested in what message, if any, Hirst had for his audience, but reported the sale like business reporters covering a soaring stock.For 10 years New Labour stood cross-eyed in admiration as London was turned into the centre of the financial universe. From the sand bags Nick Cohen has watched as they turned their back on the working class, once the object of Utopian hopes on the Left and unreasonable fears on the Right, and lovingly embraced the upper class, once the object of surly contempt on the Left. In Waiting for the Etonians are gathered his selected writings that cover the span of Labour's love affair with the Right and the moral hazard that it has culminated in. It is a romance which has not only broken its traditional bond with the working classes and undermined the very values on which the party was founded, but has now left it with little more to do than warm the seat for the next Conservative Prime Minister.
- Paperback | 400 pages
- 148 x 224 x 36mm | 439.99g
- 01 Apr 2009
- HarperCollins Publishers
- FOURTH ESTATE LTD
- London, United Kingdom
About Nick Cohen
Nick Cohen is a journalist and commentator for the Observer and Evening Standard. He is also the author of What's Left? the most important and provocative commentaries on how the Left lost its way.
'A roaring polemic of outrage against the moral and political crisis of the liberal tradition. It is already one of the most discussed current affairs books of the new year...At the very least it forces anyone on the left to think carefully about where their movement has ended up in the modern world.' The Guardian`The book is a superbly sustained polemic.' Sunday Times`Exceptional and necessary...Do not feel you have to be a leftist or liberal to read it, because it engages with an argument that it crucial for all of us, and for our time.' Christopher Hitchens, Sunday Times`This is a brave, honest and brilliant book. Every page has a provocative insight that makes you want to shake the author's hand or collar him for an argument. Who could ask for more?' The Observer'(He writes with) a genuine passion and human sympathy about people who have experienced appalling suffering.' Michael Burleigh, The Evening Standard`Undoubtedly controversial and provocative "What's Left?" is, as its title suggests, a bleakly witty but perhaps dimly hopeful examination of what it means to be liberal in an age where the lines that have been drawn in the sand are in danger of being washed away.' Waterstones Books Quarterly`One of the most powerful denunciations of the manner in which the Left has lost its way...Cohen's is a brave voice.'Michael Gove, The Spectator'Nick Cohen explains how contemporary liberals have lost their way with his usual polemical brio.' The Observer'An essay of wide reference and great brilliance.' John Lloyd, Financial Times