The icons of multiculturalism continue to shatter. Here's BBC Radio Four commissioning a documentary on the cricketing loyalties of British-born Pakistanis. Well, well. Maybe the old racist had a point after all.
Not so long ago raising the issue in polite society was the equivalent of wandering about in jackboots or talking about blood and honour. Now it's hastily being put back on the mainstream shelf. Similarly Enoch Powell was persona non cheesegrater in the 1970s Conservative Party for fearing 'rivers of blood'. Trevor Phillips warns of 'the fire next time' and everyone says what a sensible chap he is. (Except someone who correctly points out the hypocrisy of saying "the real crisis is our failure to adjust to change in our society" - i.e. it's up to the natives to change, not the incomers, then follows it with "of eastern Europeans bringing pre-1960s attitudes from countries pervaded by deep racism" - i.e. it's up to the incomers to change, not the natives. Some incomers seem to be more equal than others.)
On now - you can hear it here for a week. Despite the obligatory liberal genuflections (let's have anti-English Guardiansta Mike Marquesee for some impartial comment, shall we ?) there's some interesting stuff there.
And some depressing stuff. The young people who say 'we're Pakistani and we'll always be Pakistani' seem to take the Duke of Wellington's wiew of nationality. I can't find it in my heart to blame those who consider any English defeat as 'revenge for colonialism', though. That's what they've been taught in school and college, by white teachers and lecturers. But we'll only have true integration when young British Asians who read of the 57 Mutiny, or Clive at Plassey, can think of the British troops as "us". Way to go. Not getting there will have - and has already had - consequences.
UPDATE - the R4 "listen again" link gives you ageing liberal Charles Wheeler examining looted art. Ho hum.
"And bad mistakes, I've made a few..."
1 hour ago