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Bi-polar Britain

We will stand "shoulder to shoulder" with America in the fight against terror, but Britain cannot be a bridge across the Atlantic

By John Stevens   October 2001

For two generations Britain has been in the grip of an identity crisis. Are we Europeans or not? Are we closer to the US and the rest of the English speaking world, the “Anglosphere,” or to our continental neighbours? This rift underpins most of the contradictions in our politics. We seek European levels of public provision, with US levels of tax. We aspire to US-style flexible labour markets, but our attitudes to risk and mobility are far closer to European practice. We talk of Britain as a multicultural society like the US, but we are still attached to European notions…

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