Charles Dickens must be turning in his grave. We have a government that tells struggling families here at home to buck up and shell out to build wind farms in the developing world. How did this tragicomic state of affairs come to pass? The Tories (some of them at least) got not God but Green.
Here, there are mothers worrying about stretching a very limited budget to cover Christmas lunch, with turkey and trimmings, and presents that don’t all come from PoundLand; but the Coalition doesn’t worry about the hardships under its nose, concentrating instead on those who suffer in distant lands. Dickens would have recognised this instantly as Mrs Jellaby charity – the mother in Bleak House who is obsessed with charitable work for the missions, while her own brood is starving in her kitchen.
How did this tragicomic state of affairs come to pass? The Tories (some of them at least) got not God but Green.
Fanatical, self-righteous, and bent on evangelisation, the green religion stalks the land. Its priests preach apocalyptic visions of a future so bleak that ordinary mortals fear for our lives – even in the face of evidence to the contrary. Now, the green lobby want to spread the word to the Third World. Yes, let there be wind turbines across Africa, and low carbon farming across Colombia! And let it all happen with the British taxpayer footing the bill – to the tune of £2 billion!
You don’t need to be James Delingpole or Nigel Lawson to feel uncomfortable with the rise and rise of the green lobby. Climate change is a huge debate, and no one can afford to be partisan: our children, and our children’s children will suffer if we don’t get this right. But while some cautious experts are taking their time to sift through the evidence (much of it contradictory) the green lobby is imposing its mission on this Coalition. The Lib Dems are true believers, and have been from the outset; but so too are a surprising number of Tories.
The result is Dickensian. George Osborne today as he reads out his Autumn Statement will remind listeners of another of Dickens’s famous creations – Scrooge.