, this is well worth the reading, https://www.fadedpage.com/showbook.php?pid=20180531 David Starkey mentioned it in his Golf Club address,
his view being, that it was written when Orwell still saw a way forward for an “English Socialism” which was a view he repudiated in “1984” some 7 years, or so, later. Regardless of the Starkey analysis The Whole piece bears reading in its own historical context, but also in our own as we are basically looking at the Choices between Totalitarianism and Democracy, both being much broader terms than can have any sense without a context.
Orwell gives his context in what it means to be of the lower orders of English society, His portrait, and portrait it is rather than caricature is very recognisable to me. “The English working class are outstanding in their abhorrence of foreign habits. Even when they are obliged to live abroad for years they refuse either to accustom themselves to foreign food or to learn foreign languages. Nearly every Englishman of working-class origin considers it effeminate to pronounce a foreign word correctly” thats at the beginning and then at the end ” The question is not, ‘Can you make out a debating-society “case” in favour of Hitler?’ The question is, ‘Do you genuinely accept that case? Are you willing to submit to Hitler’s rule? Do you want to see England conquered, or don’t you?'” Lord Halifax, and all his tribe, believe that when the war is over things will be exactly as they were before. Back to the crazy pavement of Versailles, back to ‘democracy’, i.e. capitalism, back to dole queues and the Rolls-Royce cars, back to the grey top hats and the sponge-bag trousers, in saecula saeculorum. It is of course obvious that nothing of the kind is going to happen. A feeble imitation of it might just possibly happen in the case of a negotiated peace, but only for a short while. Laissez-faire capitalism is dead.
It is interesting to notice that Mr Kennedy, U.S.A. Ambassador in London, remarked on his return to New York in October 1940 that as a result of the war ‘democracy is finished’. By ‘democracy’, of course, he meant private capitalism. [Author’s footnote.] The sins of the father anyone?