Monday, June 27, 2005

Britain as a Nation

We often hear that the EU won't work, because Europeans lack a sense of common nationality. Recent squabbles over the budget might appear to confirm this view. But the more general claim that any effective state needs a robust sense of shared nationality is probably false. Doubtless, a state needs some minimum form of solidarity. Absent that, you get an Iraq: a place that can be held together only by a despot. But Britain shows that a state can survive and flourish while riven by all manner of petty national rivalries.

Anyone who still thinks that the British share a robust "we-feeling" should take a look at the discussions going on amongst Britain's exasperated rugby fans. Talk about sticking together in the face of adversity, I give you the unedited Molly Bloom-like thoughts of one Dylan Morris:

Why We Lost:

--1. we lost due to picking to many english players who have been playing poorly since the world cup. 2 wilkinson cant run or pass he is just a no go shame it was not him that got speared 3 typical english dirty play danny "hannibal" grewcock, what is the point 4 everyone knows if we play like england we are bound to loose the game has moved up a few levels since the 2003 world cup the style of game has changed someone tell stupid clive woodward. 5 all the players that are being called up for injuries should all have been there in the first place. 6 clive was not happy about not being approached to be the lions manager of 2001 in australia, im glad he never had it and i wish henry was our manager now, henry is a much better coach than woodward and henry and hansen know how they can be beaten and that is playing a WELSH game. Stuff all the english i have had a guts full of them we are in this state because of them, all the welsh , scottish and irish boys should pack their bags and leave if woody had his way he would have 45 english guys over there.

A Fellow Celt replies:

--spot on dylan, but I don't think the celts should pack up and go home. celts have never been quitters and they shouldn't be now. I'd like to see the celtic lads take it upon themselves to play expansive rugby when the opportunity arises. obviously that won't happen all that often considering how slow neil back gets the ball. but Peel can take quick tap penalties when he can and get the team going forward. this is when the quick running and passing of the celtic players can overcome the slow bovine plodding of the english.

An Englishman responds:

--didn't know they were installing internet in council houses these days.

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