Exposing the Decline and Fall of Britain: Elitism, Populism and Culture (2000)
Peter Jonathan Hitchens (born 28 October 1951) is an English journalist and author. About the book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/189355418X/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=189355418X&linkCode=as2&tag=doc06-20&linkId=7890656805726663e3e6ce881718a23b
He has published six books, including The Abolition of Britain, The Rage Against God, and The War We Never Fought. He is a frequent critic of political correctness, and describes himself as an Anglican Christian and Burkean conservative.
Hitchens writes for Britain’s The Mail on Sunday newspaper and is a former foreign correspondent in Moscow and Washington. He works as a foreign reporter and in 2010 was awarded the Orwell Prize. He is the younger brother of the late writer Christopher Hitchens.
Himself a former Trotskyist, Hitchens now says that he is “in character, puritanical, and glad of a reason to be so.” He describes his political philosophy as “a conservative position flowing directly and inevitably from a theist position. I’m not saying you can’t be a conservative without being a theist – it seems much more difficult, I’m not certain I can work out why you would want to be.”
Hitchens contends the modern Labour Party was formed by struggles in the 1980s and a programme of “social liberalism, egalitarian education and the sexual revolution” envisaged in the 1950s by figures such as Anthony Crosland and Roy Jenkins. He believes that the ideas of New Labour are based on Eurocommunism. Hitchens criticised New Labour for “attacks on the constitution”, such as reform of the House of Lords, devolution and membership of the European Union. He has described former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s constitutional reforms as a “slow-motion coup d’état.” Hitchens believes the most significant changes introduced by New Labour concentrated power in the hands of the executive, with Blair effectively chief executive, and Orders in Council installing Alastair Campbell and Jonathan Powell in Whitehall.
In his columns Hitchens mocked Blair’s public relations, calling him “Princess Tony” in reference to Blair’s calling Princess Diana “the people’s princess”, and latterly making a point of calling him “Anthony Blair.” Also, he has cast doubt on the accepted account of Blair’s early legal and political career. Hitchens described Blair’s successor, Gordon Brown, as a “dismal Marxoid”, but criticised what he saw as “prejudiced, shallow” attempts by the media to destroy Brown after he became Prime Minister in 2007, and praised Brown for, in his words, “saving the pound.”
At the same time, Peter Hitchens has been consistently dismissive of the modern Conservative Party, frequently deriding the party’s leadership as the “useless Tories” and David Cameron as “Mr Slippery.” He criticises the Conservative Party for calling itself “conservative”, since he believes it’s a “left-wing party” with a great deal in common with the Socialist Workers’ Party. Hitchens has listed actions done by the Conservative Party that he deems as “anti-British”, such as the bringing the United Kingdom into the European Economic Community (later European Union). Although initially a supporter of Thatcherism, Hitchens has criticised the Conservative Party for its free-market economic policies, calling it a “wild form of liberalism”, rather than conservatism. He once clashed with Iain Duncan Smith on Question Time over the privatisation of railways. On this issue, Hitchens has written “I have always believed that the electric power grid should be nationalised. I think it should be renationalised as a prelude to an enormous programme of nuclear power station building, without which we face an appalling energy crisis within 20 years.”
Hitchens has mixed views on the UK Independence Party. He has mocked UKIP as being “a fantasy and a Dad’s Army organisation” that is “without political importance”, a “rickety jalopy bolted together in a garden shed”, and he has criticised UKIP leader Nigel Farage, calling him a “charming charlatan”, and Farage’s personal support for drug decriminalisation, viewing UKIP itself also as “not a conservative formation, but Thatcherism in exile.” However, he also said of the 2015 general election, “If you feel for some odd reason that voting is a duty, vote for UKIP”, and he has defended UKIP from “smear” attempts and has called Nigel Farage “in fact England’s answer to Alex Salmond.” He has also said that “only a UKIP breakthrough offers the poor, betrayed British people any hope of real change. The [other parties] must lie, because they know their real aims are hateful to us.”