Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Mainstream British journalist in cheerfulness outbreak shock

I know it’s not what middle aged men are supposed to do but Chris and I, in our bantering breaks from work, often agree how much better life is now than when we were Very Young (in the 1950s and early 60s if you must know). Perhaps it’s the Cheltenham air because, following his trip down here to be part of our Literature Festival, former Tory advisor Daniel Finkelstein has penned this cheery piece for the Times (who are the festival’s main sponsor again this year).

"And in our country? Well obviously we’re richer here too and live longer and all that stuff. But even the things we complain about tell us that things are getting better. ... We are so lucky to be living when we do, so blessed. It’s a crime to waste it moaning about what’s going wrong. As someone once said, we’ve never had it so good."

Back in the mists of time, when this blog was Very Young, the banner at the top read something like ‘a Panglossian view of politics, life and suchlike’ but I’ve changed it a few times since then. If Mr Finkelstein’s notion catches on, as perhaps it should, maybe I’ll need to change it back.

It’s probably just as well that John sometimes pops into the office to remind us that all change is bad, every silver lining has a cloud and that we’re all doomed. We wouldn’t want optimism to become commonplace in Britain now would we?

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