I suppose it’s the first 4 letters which generate in my mind a sort of carrot up the arse, stiff upper lip, holier than thou image .
I think maybe it was a desirable trait in the days of Queen Victoria, when it denoted a moral, conservative stance. Nowadays, it is a trait of the progressives who are awake to any opportunity to denounce.
It is also the armour of the petty bureaucrat, who will follow the letter of the law despite great injustice being the consequence. e.g.:your visa renewal is refused because you paid the wrong fee; you must quit your job and leave the country.
These thoughts have been kindled by a recent article on Celebrity Slavery*:
The fashionable pursuit of reparations from celebrities, who might shell out rather than run the risk of ‘cancellation’ and humiliation, smacks of extortion.
Certainly the latter suggests a commercial morality: a skeleton of a rich man’s ancestors is far more valuable and attracts greater media attention.
Much easier to apply leverage to an individual than governments of former colonies where there aremany of the estimated 40 million people still in slavery.
Researching rectitude, I came across this graphic of virtues:
They seem pretty wet to me, grounded as I am in the more traditional cardinal virtues of prudence, fortitude , justice and temperance.
Be careful, be brave, be fair and moderate in all that you do.
If you practise those virtues you don’t need to be woke, righteous, progressive or vociferous.
*Article by Peter Kurti, The Spectator, 21 January 2023,
The world is dominated by the big 3 from last year: Ukraine, China and Covid.
The latter two are intertwined: I fear Covid will generate even more desperate measures in China, now that imprisoning those affected has failed.
The lack of data from China leads to speculation, which is the breeding ground for conspiracy theories, so I will try not to conspire.
Apparently huge numbers of Chinese people have been stricken by the virus since movement restrictions lifted with hospitals unable to cope. It is said that millions are likely to die in a very short space of time.
Most of these people are likely to be the elderly, people over 65.
That will greatly impact the ability of families to work, as grandparents were the main child carers – so widespread adjustments will be needed in highly emotive areas.
It seems possible that there will be greater discontent with the government who are likely to seen as the source of the misery and mortality.
The Chinese economy is likely to take a huge hit. International markets have all been rattled by their dependency on China and will have made significant moves to reduce that dependency.
So, will the CCP decide to distract the population and stimulate its military industrial complex with a war – the invasion of Taiwan has clearly long been planned…?
Frighteningly, the same could be said of North Korea!!!
Let us pray that they will not do so.
(Maybe western governments should cut China a break on Covid testing?)
I hesitate because I am aware of the commentator’s curse, but I think we will see peace between Russia and Ukraine and maybe the end of Putin (no tears here)
Covid outside China is a dead duck as an issue, being treated like we handle ‘flu.
Of course there will be alarums, rumbles and recriminations, but it has been moved into a boring conversation status.
The disruptions to the global economy will reverberate well into next year.
So what else?
Having become a conservative liberal as I age, I see the greatest challenge to the world as the Woke movement. Because this is a well entrenched movement based on emotion, it defies objective argument. Indeed part of its campaign is the cancellation of opponents.
I believe it was born in USA in the 1950’s with the Civil Rights movement legitimising radical opposition to goverment policies. It has always been fashionable for students to be left wing and radical. Che Guevarra spawned generations of revolutionaries and became the ubiquitous countercultural symbol of rebellion and global insignia in popular culture.
American imperialism in Korea, Vietnam, the Middle East, Afghanistan has alienated many people , who regard America and capitalism as the Great Satan.
Many attacks on western institutions such as democracy, freedom of speech, the rule of law and criticisms and protests have been levelled through universities, which have become the home not only of intelligensia, but the idle rich too. They also have become fertile grounds for agents provocateurs who know the untrammeled reverence the western world has for Freedom.
Social media has become the bludgeon of the wokesters, but seems largely disdained by conservatives.
The people of the US, which is a supposed torchbearer of democracy and the free world, have become deeply divided to the extent that further insurrection is quite feasible.
Maybe the world woke war will be fought there? I am repulsed by the idea that Trump may be the leader of anti-Wokesters, but that seems somehow to be how the narrative is shaping up.
In Australia, the battle of Woke will be the the referendum for a Voice.
Africa will definitely be Woke as they see new sources of money in reparations for slavery and colonial conquests. Notwithstanding the endemic corruption, nepotism, discrimination, xenophobia, female subjugation and genital mutilation, which are ignored and if mentioned attract immediate cancellation of the mentioner . (Oh dear…maybe I’ll be canceled too!)
Cultural values have changed and now appear to be totally under the influence of prevailing media.
I think 2023 will see clarification of the division between Woke and the Tories
The huge gaps in wealth between the very rich and the rest is eroding capitalism’s credibility.
The antics and influence of corporate billionaires appear to proceed unchecked and we should pray that they remain philanthropic and benevolent.
In Europe, right wing factions will grow in direct proportion to the waves of Third World refugees flooding over their borders.
If you do not like something speak out, do not avoid the issue
de l’audace, encore de l’audace, et toujours de l’audace is what is needed.