"In totalitarian regimes, everything is considered political" (TP)

The joke goes, it is either illegal or compulsory. You do not have to look far to see this happening in the UK; "Diversity Awareness Training", for example. My argument with such illiberal constructs is not that they are necessary, but that they are compulsory and they do not work, anymore than danger signs on cliff tops work. Either a person is aware and conduct themselves accordingly, or they do not. You can't legislate for either stupidity or internal prejudice. And don't be too sure about birdwatching, sex and optometry - I am sure somebody is working on it.

Expand full comment

Another helpful angle, inspiring me amidst writing a piece that reflects on the peculiar belligerence of liberal-minded people in my own world. Particularly your speculation that their dominant status incentivises conflict extension. Thank you very much for that pearl.

Expand full comment

This is all absolutely right and spot on, except this sentence:

"Admittedly, sport is socially embedded and concessions to (non-partisan) politics must be made – for example, certain campaigns against racism have their place – but this should not extend to partisan comments from analysts."

That's not consistent. "Campaigns against [systemic] racism" is just modern left wing politics, which a huge proportion of the population rejects. If you allow that, you have no basis to complain about anything else. You have to accept it all or reject it all.

Expand full comment