The awful rise of 'virtue signalling'

Want to be virtuous? Saying the right things violently on Twitter is much easier than real kindness

18 April 2015

9:00 AM

18 April 2015

9:00 AM

Go to a branch of Whole Foods, the American-owned grocery shop, and you will see huge posters advertising Whole Foods, of course, but — more precisely — advertising how virtuous Whole Foods is. A big sign in the window shows a mother with a little child on her shoulders (aaaah!) and declares: ‘values matter.’

The poster goes on to assert: ‘We are part of a growing consciousness that is bigger than food — one that champions what’s good.’ This a particularly blatant example of the increasingly common phenomenon of what might be called ‘virtue signalling’ — indicating that you are kind, decent and virtuous.

We British do it, too. But we are more sophisticated, or underhand. Mishal Husain was particularly aggressive to Nigel Farage on the Today programme recently, interrupting him mid-sentence, insinuating that he is racist or that, even if he isn’t, his membership is. She would doubtless like to believe that she was being tough but fair. But another force within her was stronger. Mishal was ‘virtue signalling’ indirectly — indicating that she has the right, approved, liberal media-elite opinions, one of which is despising Ukip and thus, most importantly, advertising that she is not racist. When she later goes to a dinner party attended by other members of the media elite, she will be welcomed and approved for having displayed the approved, virtuous views.

There are many ways to advertise your virtue. You can say ‘I hate the Daily Mail!’ to suggest that you care about people who are poor and on welfare benefits. You are saying that you respect them, care about them and do them the honour of believing the vast majority to be honest and in need.

You can declare ‘Page 3 of the Sun was degrading and embarrassing’ if you are a man: this indicates your great respect for women. If, on the other hand, you are a woman, you can say ‘Isn’t Mary Beard marvellous!’ to show that you are way above the shallowness of mere physical appearance.

Virtue signalling crosses the political divide. When David Cameron defends maintaining spending 0.7 per cent of GDP on foreign aid, he is telling us that the Tory party, or at least he himself — as a rather wonderful, non-toxic part of it — cares about the poor in the developing world. The actual effectiveness or otherwise of foreign aid in achieving this aim is irrelevant.

When Osborne says he wants a higher minimum wage, he is saying, ‘I am a good guy who cares about the low-paid and wants them to be better off.’ Never mind the unintended consequences. Just feel the good intentions.

‘I hate 4x4s!’ you declare. This is an assertion that, unlike others, you care about the environment.

It’s noticeable how often virtue signalling consists of saying you hate things. It is camouflage. The emphasis on hate distracts from the fact you are really saying how good you are. If you were frank and said, ‘I care about the environment more than most people do’ or ‘I care about the poor more than others’, your vanity and self-aggrandisement would be obvious, as it is with Whole Foods. Anger and outrage disguise your boastfulness.

One of the occasions when expressions of hate are not used is when people say they are passionate believers in the NHS. Note the use of the word ‘belief’. This is to shift the issue away from evidence about which healthcare system results in the greatest benefit for the greatest number of people. The speaker does not want to get into facts or evidence. He or she wishes to demonstrate kindness — the desire that all people, notably the poor, should have access to ‘the best’ healthcare. The virtue lies in the wish. But hatred waits in reserve even with the NHS. ‘The Tories want to privatise the NHS!’ you assert angrily. Gosh, you must be virtuous to be so cross!

Comedians make use of virtue signalling of the vituperative kind. With the right audience they can get laughs scorning the usual suspects: Ukip, the Daily Mail, Eton, bankers and the rest. The audience enjoys the caricaturing of all of these, sneering at them and, in the process, joining together as a congregation of the righteously contemptuous. What a delight to display your virtue, feel confirmed in your views, enjoy a sense of community, let off some anger and have a laugh all at the same time! It is so easy, too!

No one actually has to do anything. Virtue comes from mere words or even from silently held beliefs. There was a time in the distant past when people thought you could only be virtuous by doing things: by helping the blind man across the road; looking after your elderly parents instead of dumping them in a home; staying in a not-wholly-perfect marriage for the sake of the children. These things involve effort and self-sacrifice. That sounds hard! Much more convenient to achieve virtue by expressing hatred of those who think the health service could be improved by introducing competition.

In the jargon of economics, the assertion of moral superiority is a ‘positional good’ — a way of differentiating yourself from others. It is worth something to you. But as Kristian Niemietz of the Institute of Economic Affairs has observed, one difficulty about positional goods is that others may encroach on your ‘position’. If George Osborne says he wants a higher minimum wage, then to keep your ‘positional good’ as a person who cares more about the low-paid than others, you have to demand a higher minimum wage. So there is a bidding war. If he wants £7, you want £8. If he wants £8, then you up the stakes to £8.50 or — to hell with it! — £10! You will not be outbid when it comes to your kindness.

Virtue-signalling battles can soon take leave of any genuine concern for the low-paid or suffering. Indeed they can become highly damaging. The low-skilled whose abilities simply cannot command an absurdly high minimum wage become unemployable.

Mild forms of virtue bidding wars have entered daily life. People now sometimes say to each other, ‘Have a great evening!’ These people are effortlessly showing themselves more generous and warm-hearted than those who only wish us a ‘good’ evening. I recently got an email wishing me a ‘fantastic’ evening. What next? ‘Ecstatic’? ‘Orgasmic’?

There was a time when Britain had a form of Christianity in which pride was considered a sin. Maybe that is part of why some of us find all this virtue signalling obnoxious. It’s just showing off. For some of us it is both ridiculous and irritating that people who say that they hate Ukip actually believe they are being more virtuous than others who visit the sick, give money to charity or are kind to someone lonely. But the widespread way in which people now proudly boast suggests there is no shame, no reflection. And because of this lack of awareness, it is more common. Twitter lends itself very well to virtue signalling, since it is much easier to express anger and scorn in 140 characters than to make a reasoned argument. Russell Brand is perhaps the ultimate incarnation of modern virtue signalling. He is bursting with anger and outrage. My goodness he must be good!

Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

James Bartholomew’s latest book is The Welfare of Nations. He writes about easy ways to feel good about yourself on p. 18.

You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first 10 weeks for just $10

Show comments
  • bashstreetplug

    And so the main page, piece title reveals the true agenda as the mask slips.

  • 1664averygoodyear

    Great article Mr. Bartholemew.

    Me and my friend have for a long time outlined a similar schema of motivation for why people on the left hold

  • 1664averygoodyear

    Great article. This question of why people on the modern left hold the views they do is one that I’ve pondered for while. Like you, I agree that it has as its basis the desire to assert oneself and ones value over and above our peers (as I’d argue a great deal of human behaviour does both historically and today), using ‘moral superiority’ as a ‘positional good’ as you term it.

    However it is the motivation you cite at the beginning of the article that is in my view most significant, namely the desire to ‘belong’. Through the assertion of bein-pensant morality people are able to integrate easier into the prevailing moral tone of the country, and bond with other people who share their views (part of which involves bonding through mutual dislike of non-PC entities or views). It’s a pet theory of mine that many today’s most ardent exponents of this new morality would have happily been supporters of Hitler in Nazi Germany (sorry Godwin!). Why? Because they’re simply going along with the prevailing cultural and intellectual climate, as opposed to using a logical analysis of data based around a coherent worldview to inform their opinion.

    Indeed, this is why people often miss the point and ask, why is the modern left is so riddled with inconsistencies? To do so mistakes it as representing an attempt to fashion an intellectually coherent worldview, when actually it’s not about articulating a coherent world view, so much as simply latching onto whatever victim group you can identify (using a notion of privelege that identifies victimhood in degrees of divergence from the ‘straight white christian male’)

    • rtj1211

      I’m afraid those on the Right do exactly the same. The DT and The Spectator are never-ending champions of claiming the Right is morally superior to the Left. Never-ending. They have the rights to do so, but it’s absolute insanity to suggest that it doesn’t happen.

      The Christian Church does likewise. It has used blackmail, be that emotional, financial or societal over millennia to try and assert control, be that of sexual preference, roles of women in society, imposition of its beliefs through war and crusade. Islam is somewhat worse in those regards currently.

      We’ll start from the thesis that right wing journaiists aren’t hacking computers to plagiarise, shall we?? Then we’ll ask whether they trash someone whilst filching their ideas and views, regurgitating them in articles a few days/weeks/months later??

      Then we’ll move onto the ‘this is the way you ought to respond growing up’ dogmas, instead of realising that human beings are as diverse as the plant kingdom and respond in equally diverse ways. You respond in ways dependent upon how your parents treat you, your schoolmates treat you, your teachers treat you, whether you find enjoyable activities early or not etc etc. Pretty much the only things all children should be capable of at 18 are feeding themselves healthily on a budget, being fluent readers and communicators through writing and sufficiently aware of how the two sexes think to be capable of respectful relations with both, in their own generation and in others. Everything else is pretty much up for grabs in my book.

      Sport is not the only way to learn human values: it’s just a suitable one for sporty types. I don’t value an Oxford Blue above someone who played the Beethoven violin concerto with a professional orchestra in public. The skill levels required are the same, the lessons learned getting there the same. It’s just that one involves heart, lungs and muscles; the other involves precision, touch and immersion of the human spirit.

      Shakespeare is not the only way to learn history. You can do it any number of ways and you certainly don’t learn history reciting lists of wars that the British Empire engaged in. All that is is British propaganda regurgitated.

      You don’t respect people because of their position unless they show they are worthy of it. If someone trashes your sexuality, tries to control every decision of your life past the age of 18 and behaves like a dictatorial patriach, it doesn’t matter one iota if they were Prime Minister, Archbishop of Canterbury or Heir to the Throne. They deserve a good whipping and a public dressing down.

      All you are saying is that your formulation of life is more preferable to you.

      Your formulation is that there are no rules in how you make your money, but once there you have the absolute right to decide what to do with it, especially with regard to charitable giving.

      Those who have been trashed by that attitude tend to prefer the concept that people like that did rather less charity and behaved rather better at work.

      All that has been decided is who you crush to a pulp and who you spare.

      Nothing uniquely superior about that, is there????

      • Lina R

        The Spectator doesn’t convey a moral superiority – it merely highlights the hypocrisy and inaccuracy of the Left.

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          Yes ,usually by way of utterly feeble and ill informed journalism of the lowest order. The Spectator is in danger of becoming a laughing stock like the Daily Mail.

    • magi83

      It’s a form of childishness, much in the same way that a teenager may rebel against his or her parents irrespective of the fact that they do in fact know what’s best, the leftist rails against existing institutions and conventions as oppressive. And ironically they do this while espousing a worldview that seeks to enforce their own views on everyone else.

    • Nkaplan

      “Why? Because they’re simply going along with the prevailing cultural and intellectual climate, as opposed to using a logical analysis of data based around a coherent worldview to inform their opinions. ”

      This is a completely accurate diagnosis of the bovine mob-mentality of much of what passes for mainstream ‘thought’ and morality today. The one thing that the left has managed to achieve which is truly incredible is, at the same time as making their sentimental nonsense utterly all-pervasive, they’ve managed to retain the belief that they are still somehow counter-cultural or anti-establishment. This makes them utterly immune to the kind of analysis outlined in the article or your own post, because they retain the satisfying notion that their opinions are original, hard fought for and held at some cost to themselves – they are completely incapable of realizing they are walking, talking cliches.

      • 1664averygoodyear

        Very true. It never fails to amaze me that Owen Jones can so endlessly bleat on about ‘the establishment’ without realising that he embodies the new establishment.

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        Ah ,but we will win and all the old Tories are dieing off.

  • MikeF

    So ‘left-liberals’ can ‘hate’? Well yes they are rather good at that actually.

  • Sue Sims

    This may help to explain why, in US studies, ‘conservatives’ are invariably found to give more money to charity and spend more of their own time in charitable activities than ‘liberals’.

    One very minor, nit-picking point: is there any form of Christianity where pride is not considered a great evil? It’s traditionally one of the seven deadly sins.

    • rtj1211

      It’s a fine balance between doing yourself down and feeling inadequate and having a healthy self-esteem and bigging yourself up a bit too much.

      It’s also the case that many ‘conservatives’ are more than capable of destroying people’s lives at work, which usually makes them in no mood to be doing charity themselves, whether they are liberal, conservative or of no fixed opinion. I know this from personal experience and will brook zero resistance to this truth. It is not saying all conservatives are like it, it is saying that enough are…….

      • Sue Sims

        Of course, ‘conservatives’ can be be horrible people! You’ve rather missed the point here, as you seem to have done in later posts as well. The issue is not whether conservatives are nicer or nastier than liberals – actually, in my experience, liberals are often more fun to be with – but who, statistically, takes more trouble to help others and spends more of their own net income on charity. That, in fact, is conservatives.

        This has, of course, very little to do with whether any one person is more or less generous with time and money – statistics are a very dangerous guide to individuals. There’s a correlation between height and intelligence (100 years ago it was very noticeable; now much less so, but still statistically significant); however, if anyone assumed from that correlation that I (five foot nothing) was less intelligent than my husband (six foot eight – stop sniggering in the back row), they’d be mistaken, since our IQ measurement is identical.

        • Mr B J Mann

          Well, I bet he only told you he had the same IQ after you accepted his claim about the 8″!

  • milford

    Excellent article. Quality journalism.

    • mr_nicely

      Fully agree. A rare, educational piece indeed. I cannot remember the last time I read an article by a UK journo which was not a party political broadcast.

    • To be honest it’s all crushingly obvious; however an article like this is a rarity precisely because of the grip the Lefty Blob now has.

  • Bonzo

    Excellent article. Combine virtue signalling with its sinister twin the pitch fork/flaming torch wielding twitter mob and it presents rather a depressing summary of the state of democracy.

  • Peter Stroud

    A very well thought out article. Thanks.

  • Ivan Ewan

    It’s very good, very well-written. It describes the kind of moral narcissism which is, inadvertantly or not, running people like me into the ground, by making everything more costly and, in the long run, more deadly.

    And speaking of Christianity, what was it that Jesus said about an impoverished old lady silently giving up her last penny, compared to rich men bragging about their charities?

    • Damaris Tighe

      Very sorry – made my own point about narcissism before seeing yours! Your second paragraph is spot on. True virtue doesn’t announce itself.

      • Ivan Ewan

        🙂 That’s OK, I don’t own the trademark on that word.

  • Teacher

    This is so true. My friends are ‘nice’, middle class people and when I find myself among them I notice that there is always a period of announcing one’s virtue by denouncing the ‘baddies’:- UKIP, the ‘Daily Mail’, racists, etc. followed by a period of trumpeting one’s own merits on the do-gooder scale:- ‘I’m running for charity’, ‘I volunteered for so and so’, ‘I gave such and such’, ‘I vote Labour/Green/Lib-Dem’. None of it is rational or based on any sound evidence as it is merely for show.

    It is, as the article suggests, easier to announce than to do – and it is easier to sneer than announce or do.

    • rtj1211

      Quite the worst kinds do all you say whilst spending half their life trying to destroy the freedoms of others to pursue their own lives in ways that they deem fit.

      If you aren’t mature enough to embrace others’ freedoms, you certainly aren’t mature enough to be doing good……..

    • Infidelissima

      change friends

    • Damaris Tighe

      But as James points out, all these ways of announcing ‘virtue’ cost your friends very little or nothing. It’s a form of narcissism which elicits approval from their peers.

      • Teacher

        It’s true but what shocks me is how vehement they are in their condemnation of ‘the other’. They are quite as bigoted in my view as those they depict as ‘racist’ or ‘nasty’ or ‘Kippers’. It’s quite horrible to listen to, not least because they are often absurd or just plain wrong and I wonder to myself what they would say or do if they knew what I was thinking.

        • Brimstone52

          Can I suggest, when these people say they hate “X”, pose the simple question “Why?” and await a spluttering,garbled reaction or a deathly hush.

          Either is a win.

          • Andy M

            What I find is that they will give a reason why, but it will be puerile and based on media hype/myth/stereotype rather than actual reality, which is ironic as they are usually the first to point out when things are a stereotype or myth if it goes against the Left wing agenda. Classic example is to ask why they are so against UKIP policies. The reply comes, predictable as always: they are bigots and racists. Nobody actually bothers to say what’s wrong with their policies.

          • Brimstone52


          • Nkaplan

            Nor can they offer a shred of evidence that they are bigoted or racist, they hold these ‘beliefs’ entirely without evidence, like free floating entities that have entered their minds as if by a kind of malevolent osmosis. Our political culture has become so saturated with sentimental and cliched banalities there’s nowhere else for them to go to except into the minds of your average, ill educated, middle class do-gooder.

          • Very few know what UKIP’s policies are,other than what the sneering media tell them.

          • Tynam

            Then I’ll bother: they’re economically illiterate, even compared to the economically ignorant Conservative policies they’re based on. They’re based – even more than Cameron – on the known-false assumption that if we suck up to the hyper-rich enough, that somehow creates an economy by itself. They’re a trojan horse, made of Tory MPs and backed by Tory donors, led by Tories, to get votes from people fed up with the actual Conservatives.

            But “bigoted and racist” IS ALSO what’s wrong with UKIP’s policies. They’re all based on the silly assumption that foreigners are responsible for EU policies that UKIP hate (wrong, and in at least one case it’s actually Farage personally that was responsible). They also trade heavily on the lie that immigration is bad for our jobs (false) and the economy (utterly false).

          • Andy M

            You haven’t bothered. You’ve done exactly what everyone here expects, which is to use some buzzwords from the Little Book of Left Wing Smears and Jibes. You’ve claimed their policies are economically illiterate, without actually explaining which ones and why. You’ve then compared them to the Conservatives and said they are worse, like that in any way makes them look bad (here’s a Protip for you: between UKIP and the Tories votes in the recent GE, more people voted for them than Labour and the SNP put together, so they are more credible than your Left wing options).

            You then go on to make the boring, tired and entirely false old claim that they blame immigrants for EU policy, when we all know, you included (if you care to be honest) that they want out of the EU because EU is causing the problems.

            So what you have come out with is more of the same old cliched attacks, and yet again, predictably, no substance.

          • Tynam

            Anybody who describes Labour as a “Left wing option” is so utterly removed from political reality that they’re not really qualified to complain about anyone else’s comments.

            But I’ll pretend that was just a slip of your keyboard and respond.

            Yes, *of course* I was summarising without substance. I have better things to do with my lunch break than type a five page essay on the many ways in which UKIP is lying to its voters, and anything less than that doesn’t begin to cover it. If you’re actually interested, the reasons that UKIP is actually a party of loot-the-public-to-prop-up-the-1% are extremely well-documented in many places, and two seconds with Google will get your answers.

            (I’m particularly pleased by your implication that UKIP doesn’t blame immigrants, though. I must have missed the speech where Farage stood up to May’s Conservative fearmongering and proudly announced that immigrants contribute positively to our economy and were welcome on our shores. Please direct me to this UKIP policy, as I’m eager to rectify my ignorance.)

            So here’s a protip for you: Cameron’s “victory” consists of 67% of voters voting against him, and less than 25% of the electorate in favour. It’s not exactly the Thatcher years. It’s not even the Major years, and certainly not the Blair years. It’s a just-barely-hated-less-than-the-other-guy endorsement from an apathetic nation, achieved by the skin of his teeth against an opponent that left the goal wide, wide open.

            But here’s a more important protip for you: credibility has nothing to do with electoral support. Faking one to win the other is what politicians are *for*.

          • Andy M

            They are the Left-wing option. It doesn’t mean to say they are particularly Left wing, just that they are the main option. You once again fail in your attempts to make any form of ground in this discussion.

            You labeled your comments as “I’ll bother then” which directly confirms that you apparently felt you were in a position to bother to give the detail. You then went off on the usual Left-wing diatribe and failed miserably, meaning that you not only was it the same old hot air as always, it wasn’t even doing what you purported to have decided to do.

            “I have better things to do with my lunch break than type a five page essay”

            This is probably the most hilarious thing I’ve read in a while. Someone who interjects themselves into a discussion of people agreeing how nobody ever makes any actual fact-based critique of UKIP or their manifesto policies, to make the statement like you are some form of Left-wing hero here to battle on behalf of your comrades: “I’ll bother then”!!! At which point you do exactly what we’ve just described, proving our point and then making the most feeble of excuses that you have better things to do with your time! Truly, truly sad and pathetic, even by Left wing troll standards.

            Yet more nothingness, yet more lack of substance and critique. Predictable and rather embarrassing that this is the best you have to offer.

          • Tynam

            Glad I made your day funnier. You’re right, too – I shouldn’t have jumped in unless I had time to do the job properly.

            But you’re also wrong. Being “the main option” doesn’t make Labour the left-wing option. There is no magic politics fairy which guarantees that there is always a left-wing option. Voting is multiple-choice, and right now, the two major political parties are both right-wing. Being slightly-less-right-wing is not the same as being left-wing, and it damages our political discourse to conflate the two.

            This election we had a choice of two different right-wing options (in the mainstream) or a wide variety from left-wing to extreme right (on the fringe).

            I find it interesting, but depressing, that the closer our two main parties have got to each other, the *more* divisively entrenched our opinions have become. It points us on the road to the US model of politics, which is a scary and sickening thought.

            For your arguments had this flaw: they were no more backed up by facts, references or information than mine.

            So I propose a deal: I, personally, shall refrain from summarising my contempt for UKIP, unless I plan to analyse policy in meaningful detail, addressing actual claims using countering facts with references.

            And you, personally, shall refrain from using phrases like “usual Left-wing diatribe” and “Little Book of Left Wing Smears and Jibes”, unless you plan to counter-argue in meaningful detail, addressing actual claims using countering facts with references.

            Just because we disagree shouldn’t stop us debating meaningfully, and if it does then in the long run we’re both lost.

          • Grace Ironwood

            Guys, Andy.
            The present incarnation of the Labour Party widely is acknowledged to be VERY left wing.

            Tynan is just signalling he stands on the Pure (or as we would say “extreme”) Left spectrum.

            As such, he is offering you gnosis.

          • Why, the ultimate question.

          • Sam Caws

            Can I suggest you Google ‘false dichotomy’? There exists the possibility “these people” can give you a coherent explanation of why they hate “X”.
            Also, I hate The Spectator. And you.

          • Brimstone52

            No dichotomy, false or otherwise.

            I did not exclude the possibility you mention. I was indicating that the likelihood of a rational reason was extremely rare. Since most reason will not be rational they will be easy to counter.

            Enjoy loathing about. You obviously have a talent for it.

          • Coconutdog

            I hate you too Sam. Have a great evening.

          • milford

            Thanks for the chuckle that was funny 😉

        • ButcombeMan

          The vehemence of Sturgeon as she spits out “Tories” is something to behold.

          She is too young, too ignorant and too economically illiterate to understand how, repeatedly, the Tories and especially the Thatcher years, saved Britain.

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Surgeon is a fine woman. Sturgeon is the enemy of the Thatcher years. Sturgeon will drag the Labour party well to the left. Sturgeon will soon be a heroine as we spit on Thatchers legacy.

          • Grace Ironwood

            Stay classy.

          • Brimstone52

            The Tories, including Thatcher, have signed the majority of the EEC/EU treaties. Far from saving Britain, they have sold us out.

            For the avoidance of doubt, Labour have done also.

          • Tynam

            And by “saved” here we mean “condemned”, as anyone who’s *actually* studied economics – instead of just parroting a party line that they’re good for the economy – can tell you.

            Indeed, there isn’t a single major crisis we face now that *doesn’t* have it’s roots in the Thatcher years.

            Massive increase in wealth inequality, crippling economic recovery because businesses suffer when no customers can afford to shop?

            (Sounds familiar from somewhere… oh, yes, the late 80s.)

            Disastrous recession caused by the recklessness of an utterly deregulated financial sector?

            (Thatcher’s dream at it’s finest, as implemented by Blair, Brown and Cameron.)

            Massive housing crisis? Gee, wonder how that happened.

          • Albert Ross

            Massive housing crisis is due to uncontrolled immigration.

        • Miss Floribunda Rose

          The other should always be vehemently condemned.

        • Svenski

          They are the first people who will look down on you and judge you if you aren’t wearing the right clothes, or don’t go Polo.

      • Kennybhoy

        “…It’s a form of narcissism…”

        Spot on.

    • Planet Vague

      “I get out more” is the worst of insults. Who do these cosmopolitans think they are?

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        Hating UKIP is a moral duty for all right thinking people.
        Once Scotty land is gone and we are no longer a United Kingdom, what will UKIP call its shabby little outfit?
        The Kingdom of England, Principality of Wales and Northern Ireland Independce party does not trip off the tongue. KEPWNI. Kep whiney.

        • global city

          but your lot of ‘independent aspirants’ are busy handing all of that power to brussels on a plate, you complacent little haggis

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Indeed, that is exactly what we want.Power in Brussels and taken away form the evil CoLC, Jersey and the Caymans.

        • Brimstone52

          Thinking people do so, they look at the options and support the one party that wants to do the best thing for all the people of the UK. That’s UKIP.

          • Cosmo

            He/she obviously have no time for any of that “thinking” nonsense. Far too busy signalling their virtue (posturing).

          • Richard Baranov

            Quite so, the above troll along with Telemachus, sounds off constantly contributing nothing of any substance. It is symptomatic of the time we live in that fact and reality become a moral crime and sound bites without substance become a virtue.

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Of course we wait with baited breathe for Baranov to utter a fact.

          • milford

            How very well put Richard.

          • Guest

            Classic virtue signalling there.
            Delta minus types will not get it, ever.

          • Tynam

            Where, by “all the people of the UK”, you mean “Nigel Farage the embezzler, personally, and his hyper-rich friends”.

            If you look at their actual policies – as opposed to the pretty speeches – UKIP has openly announced it’s intention to profit the rich, and only the rich, and screw the rest of us.

          • Brimstone52

            How does taking people on the minimum wage out of tax benefit the rich?

          • Tynam

            By benefitting the entire economy. But that’s not actually the policy I was referring to.

            UKIP is pro-corporate-ownership, pro-TTIP (suddenly all the rhetoric about “defending our sovereignty” goes away when it’s a foreign *corporation* that gets to ignore our laws), pro wealth redistribution (upward only), and – let’s not forget – led by a man who openly defrauded taxpayers by not even bothering to show up to his job.

            UKIP represents utterly corrupt, utterly corporate-owned political business as usual. Same conservatives, purpler tie.

          • Brimstone52

            Show me where UKIP is pro-TTIP?

            I’m not, never have been and never will be a Tory. I used to vote Labour and was a TU branch officer.

          • Tynam

            UKIP’s official policy on TTIP is “pass the treaty, fight to leave the NHS out”. This is the same weak cop-out pushed by Labour: be pro-TTIP, while vaguely pretending an unlikely exemption for one tiny area of life makes it somehow better that it trashes all the others.

            I said nothing about you, your background, or your voting. I neither know nor care; it’s not relevant to the discussion. I said UKIP represented corporate-owned conservative policy. They do. Their backers are ex-conservative backers, their policies are conservative, their talking points are conservative.

            (There’s nothing Farage personally is likely to do for anyone but the hyper-rich, because he’s a classic politician – a venal fraud who exists to suck money from the public while doing as little actual work as possible. But that’s just one man; it says nothing about UKIP.)

          • Brimstone52

            I pointed out my background to disprove your contention that all UKIP supporters are former conservatives.

            The rest is your opinion, just one of many that can be safely disregarded.

          • Tynam

            That would have been a useful counter-argument… if I had made any such contention.

            UKIP’s supporters are from a broad and wide-ranging set of backgrounds.

            Unfortunately, UKIPs MPs are overwhelmingly ex-Conservative. UKIPs management are overwhelmingly conservative. And most importantly, UKIPs big donors are overwhelmingly conservative.

            So if you’re expecting anything other than pure conservatism from them, whatever your background, you’re in for a nasty shock.

            As for the rest – UKIP’s policy on TTIP is public record. I fail to see how it’s “my opinion”.

        • Cosmo

          Did you bother to read the article? Did it make you feel a little uncomfortable? It should have.

          • Richard Baranov

            You are all missing the point. Stuart-Hargraves is a troll who will say anything to provoke in order to bend a topic toward attention on himself. He has nothing to say or contribute to the general good because he lives in a world of solipsism as do most psychopaths. And, believe me, he displays all the classical symptoms. I suggest you simply don’t play with him, nothing will annoy him more.

        • The Bogle

          ‘Scotty land’ is patronising: hardly the expression of a right-on PC person. And why do you assume that our United Kingdom will sunder?

          Of course, within a fully federal EU superstate the UK will be divided into 12 EU regions and a balkanised England will comprise nine of them. Now that would be a shabby end of a once-great nation!

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Personally I tnink that is the right way forward. I have little affinity to England and none at all to Britain, but a strong regional identity and pride in being European.We don’t need petty nationalism and all the football hooligan bile that comes with it.

        • Muttley

          I have a feeling that advocating “hating” as a “moral duty” disqualifies you from being a “right thinking” person.

        • Andrew Smith

          That is a very tendentious (and self-serving) definition of “right-thinking”

        • mr_nicely

          It seems the majority of Scots want the UK to remain united. Thanks for reminding everyone of that. Your devisive thinking has been soundly rejected – its time to move on.

        • John Andrews

          Was this written as a parody of virtue signalling.

        • No left thinking actually,the right tend to support UKIP,anyway keep on dancing dahlings.

        • Dogsnob

          And so, as suggested above, can you give us the main reasons WHY you view UKIP with such pre-emptive hatred?

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            UKIP is the greatest threat to civilisation that has reared its head in Britain since the National Front in 1977 and Mosley’s Blackshirts. They are an insidious group of sneering haters and the timid backward looking uneducated. They pander to ill thought through gut reactions , they prey on poverty, they seek to divide people.In short, they are scum and we do have a duty to stop them .They have the potential to do untold damage to progress and to enlightened thought.They will jeopardise our great chance to bring the World forward. They are neat evil.

          • Dogsnob

            Thank you.

            I am looking forward as well as backwards. I hate only those who strive to do me and my people harm.

            I am educated sufficiently, to be able to resist calls to unthinkingly accept easy short-term fixes when I see the need for long-term solutions.

            I am barely above poverty and would not ever prey on those who are in a worse position. I hate divisiveness whilst realising that the bonds which hold society must weaken with every further stretch, and there is a snapping point.

            Progress and enlightened thought are indeed worthy as aims and possessions. They have been sadly depleted by successive waves from both Labour and Tory.

            Large parts of the world are bringing themselves forward. The idea that this tiny, degraded nation can do much for the others is fantasy.

            I’ve asked a few people and my kids, and they assure me I am not evil. I am quite relieved to hear this.

            I will be voting UKIP.

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            Then you are wrong. The World looks to Britain as a civilising influence. That is why so many come here. Poor to be bettered and rich to protect their assets. You would abnegate this reponsibility in favour of narrow minded greed.

          • Dogsnob

            What greed were you thinking of?
            Are you saying that Britain has a responsibility to see to it that the world’s poor can better themselves and we can protect the assets of all its wealthy? My little struggling nation has all of this heaped on its shoulders?

        • pp22pp

          Thank you for reminding me why I vote UKIP. People with your views have failed miserably and remain as defiantly ignorant as ever. Your nose is so firmly stuck in the air that you cannot see what is in front of you. If you want to understand the UKIP minset, read this article.


          It deals with relatities not platitudes. You and your friends need to shape up or step aside. Real inspiration is required if we are to deal with the social catastrophe and rampant indebtedness that you and your ilk have left in your wake.

          What is especially galling is that you and your ilk expect to be paid six-figure salaries for standing by and letting every other child in Rotherham by raped and the same time as telling the rest of us how good and competent you are.

          You don’t think at all – right or otherwise.

        • davidshort10

          It will still be called the United Kingdom, and I know the logic of the kingdom of Scotland not being in it. Possibly the full official name that we only ever see on passports will change to the United Kingdom of Britain and Northern Ireland. It has never mattered that Wales is never mentioned in the title when it is only a principality. Other countries will not bother to change the name so we’ll still have to scroll down through umpteen countries to find Grande-Bretagne, Royaume-Uni or Angleterre. We’ll probably have to change the flag though but that’s happened in the past, too. We’ll get over it. When 45pc of a country want to get out of a union, and when they lose a referendum and the nationalist party gets more members, it is time for them to leave. They asked to join; they can ask to leave. The British won’t care one way or another. They didn’t during the referendum; only the politicians did. Tories because they held power and they are Unionist and no PM wants to preside over a loss of territory and Labour because it had lots of seats there. But no longer.

        • milford

          What do you call your shabby little outfit?

    • Man is a very “moral animal”, which is how the state has always controlled society, in the past via a religious ideology, now by a secular one: http://philosopherkin.blogspot.co.uk/2015/03/method-to-madness-of-post-racial.html

      • magi83

        True. Mr. Dawkins, Mr. Harris and the late Mr. Hitchens have all rather missed the point in their crusade against theism.

      • Richard Baranov

        I am not sure I would say that, “man is a very moral animal…” and I do recognize that you are qualifying that remark via the quotation marks. Morality is something imposed. However in psychology it has long been recognized that, as a species, even at a very young age, we display acts of spontaneous altruism. A fact that is heartening and leads me to believe that man is innately good.
        I know I part ways with many people on here when I say that societies built on such concepts as “original sin”, categorical distinctions of right and wrong, the dualism of mind and body, etc. probably corrupt human nature, not contribute to man being a more noble creature.

        • There is, I think, an imposed morality, which the state (its ruling elite) uses as means of socio-political intimidation and control (making us feel guilty about our sexuality, racial prejudices, or whatever), but also a natural, endogenous morality which inclines us to put the interests of our tribe (others) before our own personal interests, because it was the survival of the tribe, rather than the individual, which evolution favoured.

          The state conflates and confounds very different aspects of the original tribal environment in which human nature evolved, long before the advent of civilisation and the state, which now deceitfully poses as our tribe or nation (our intra- and inter-tribal environment) itself, while at the same time facilitating society’s self-exploitation (as an extra-tribal environment) to the personal advantage of members of its ruling elite and their favoured clients.

          This has profound implications, which I elaborate on in this blog: http://philosopherkin.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/civilisation-evolutionary-cul-de-sac.html

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          High sounding nothings again. But if man is innately good, nobody will vote UKIP.

    • Roger Hudson

      The Brits are peerless in claiming the moral high ground.

    • Mc

      Are you talking about friends or “friends” 😉

    • Miss Floribunda Rose

      There is no such thing as a nice middle class person.

    • Tynam

      Um… how are giving to charity, volunteering to assist charitable organisations, or voting not actual actions that actually imrove the world?

      What’s irrational and not based on any evidence is your despite for that.

      It is, indeed, easier to sneer than to do. So, what did you do, in response?

    • Svenski

      Quite. Chelsea is full of this. Chins in the air.

  • Nick

    Excellent article and the reasoning in it,is another reason why I will vote UKIP.

    • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

      Easily led and wrong.

      • Brimstone52

        The easily led are those who continue to vote for the same donkeys that deride the people of the UK who are not like them.

      • Nick

        Who is?

      • William_Brown

        Well, that’s an opinion.

        • alfredo

          I don’t think it was intended as an opinion; more of an ex cathedra pronouncement – like others by the Hargreaves pantomime horse.

          • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

            I do fact and evidence, not opinion.

          • alfredo

            As I said …

  • Lakenvelder

    Many – possibly most – human beings are cowards and intrinsically lazy when it comes to working things out for themselves. It’s just a case of the blind leading the blind. That’s why those humans are easily manipulated – unfortunately their X on the ballot paper holds equal weight. Looking into their world from the outside I can see the insanity of it all; the lunatics, aided by social media, have definitely taken over the asylum.

    • Tom M

      That first sentence is oh so true. I’ve lost count of the number of people
      I’ve seen on the television when asked about elections, general or North of the border, who claim that no-one has told them what the facts are. This in an age where you could be buried in information at the touch of a key.

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        You must work very hard to find facts and have a retentive memory rather than a retentive back end like Cameron.

        • Tom M

          Being capable of writing an objectionable comment like that from someone who claims to be well read and in spite of the fact we were agreeing upon the subject in question is quite quite remarkable.

    • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

      Very good point.Hence I have read 900 books to try and inform my opinions and refuse to be led by blind idiots. Bit more advice .NEVER read a newspaper.

      • William_Brown

        Interesting that you actually count the number of (self affirming?) books that you have read…

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          It is a rough calculation. I read 26 a year ( one every two weeks) and have done since I was 17.

    • Jackthesmilingblack

      Also known as taking refuge in the majority.

  • James

    I have been amused to see social media wars – friends are unfriending because, one supports another political party. Leftists are borderline-fascists and I would be frightened to say my politics is not left – just in case I got mugged, kidnapped or trafficked into eastern europe.

    The Guardian is HQ for labeling and slandering, often creating tensions with poorly researched articles with willful misrepresentation that are disguised by blaming The Daily Mail. As someone who is researching nueroscience and psychiatry, I would consider leftism to be a sign of mental illness.

    • Farage’s Fried Chicken

      I preferred the hating Ukip headline. That made even less f e c k i n sense.

      • James

        My last sentence case and point.

    • porcelaincheekbones
      • James

        Brilliant blog! I may send some additional research to the authors.

        • porcelaincheekbones

          spread the r/K theory, liberals hate it!

          • Ill-Liberal

            I’ve not got on to that boom yet but it looks amazing. The Blog seems too nuts to be true but everything makes a lot of sense. As with this debating things. Must read ASAP and then try and blow some fuses in my Lefty mates heads.

          • porcelaincheekbones

            r-types have a High Time Preference, quantity of offspring
            K-types have Low, quality parental investment
            humans have this dual mating strategy, and it is genetic (brain differences)

    • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

      I am always very modest. Never put forward my opinion uninvited, never big myself up as any sort of do-gooder, ( that is one reason to stay anonymous on here). But so many do and it is so sad to see.
      My advice is no mobile phone, no satnav’, no facebook, no twitter, no reason to seek to glorify what I do . Tempered with some beer, some car racing and some slagging off of toffs and UKIPs online.

      • James

        When I was younger, every Saturday i’d go down the high street to Woolworths. I remember they used to put the baskets outside, full of goodies going cheap – whether the latest no1 single or a new gadget – my rubix cube was purchased for less than £1 that was well earned cleaning my dads car. Then I’d invite my friends round to share my treasures and socialise with real humans making genuine connections. Today, I feel sorry for kids – its not safe on the streets in most places and they have no bright future – social media has become a distraction from human development. Nowadays, children as young as 5 years old can be classified with mental illness for simply being boisterous, restlessness or being too active. Put simply, if your child is being a child, authorities can label them with ‘Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder’ with a lifetime stigma coupled with a life of medication prescriptions, paid for by the British tax payers why the political class reap the profits. That’s real social media.

      • alfredo

        Why don’t you tell us a bit more about YOURSELF? We’re all dying to know.

        • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

          I am modest, anonymous and a tenacious enemy of UKIP.

          • alfredo

            That hardly distinguishes you from the mob. Giving reasons (preferably recognisable as sane) for this hostility might – though I’m not banking on it.

      • And you win first prize for imaginative trolling :^D

    • That made me laugh in a wry kind of way, James. I’m normally a WYSIWYG person but felt myself cowering not commentating after some of the lefty bile I’ve read. Am now trying not to be such a wimp – on Twitter at least. I guess none of us likes being unfriended even if the unfriender is a dork ;^)

      • James

        You are better having 1 friend in real life than 1000 on social media. I’ve got serial lefties on my social feeds and they hate it every time I elaborate with real facts when they spin codswallop.

    • Ill-Liberal

      Always seems to be mega dull lefties are like propaganda units of social media. I’ve considering deleting a few bt decided it’s the sort of thing they’d do .

      The anonymous conservative stuff recommended below seems to make a lot of sense.

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        90% of the press is run by and for the Tories you twit.

  • Dan O’Connor

    My compliments .
    What you have described and psycho-analysed so astutely is the collective psychosis that has spread like a self-replicating cancer throughout the Western cultural psyche.since the 60’s . A failed evolutionary experimental off-shoot of the human race who is bound for the Darwinian junk pile of history and extinction .
    –Homo-Hystericus Egalitarius . Unfotunately they intend to take the rest of us with them over the edge of the demographic abyss
    The international White nationalist / identitarian movement I adhere to and its blogosphere have of course produced a mountain of fine literature over the last 30 years which has been devoted to exploring the historical roots and the mental processess behind White ethno-masochism. and the White middle upper class Social Justice Fraudster cult , which has now taken on the properties of a secular religion and has also investigated the international corporate,, govermental, cultural ideological and masonic forces and interest groups and organisations that have funded it , cultivated it perpetuated it and exploited it over the last 100 years .
    Multiculturalism, Leftism , Cultural Marxism . Poltiical Correctness , or whatever one wishes to call it … … goes hand in hand with Goldman Sachs

    • Shoogle

      Hi Dan – is the solution not to get into mainstream culture – like pop music, funny videos etc cos most folk wont read interesting political blogs – the internet now means folk can bypass the mainstream media. Is anyone doing this? Cheers

      • Dan O’Connor

        It is not possible for the Nationalist / Identitarian movement to enter the mainstream cultural sphere because the anti-Whites control all of the cultural and media choke points and they become hysterical at the slighest flicker of Whites attempting to organise to prevent our demographic destruction .
        Whites have become so indoctrinated and intiimdated that I don’t believe the nationlist movement can do a reverse culture wars like the Left did over the last 50 years
        But as you can see , the anti-EU , anti-immigration parties in Europe are gaining influence and power, so the ” Overton Window ” is slowly shifting
        Whites have become so morally emasculated that I believe that only massive social instabilty , and mayhem and chaos will wake them up out of their state of passivity .

        • Shoogle

          Cheers for reply. Does the internet and such things as Youtube not mean the chokers can be bypassed though. Put up a funny video or even a well made documentary a la Vice and it could be seen by millions of folk.

  • Johnny Foreigner

    Apart from a bit of bloat speak, this piece goes some way to explaining part of today’s accepted social conversation and group think. I have to assume he doesn’t do much drinking with Isabel Hardman or Subassteeon Pain. People such as Mr Bartholomew bung up this type of social observation every now and again, but never submit a solution to counter such group thinking. Rather when reading such pieces and nodding in agreement or tut tutting over a Rich Tea and a cuppa, I’d like to get on board with some sort of push back, no matter how small my input, I just don’t know how or where to start.

    • Dan O’Connor

      Millennial Woes ( UK ) videos
      Western Spring ( UK )
      LibertyGB ( UK ) articles / videoes
      Tradtional Britain Group , ( UK youtube/ videos )
      Alternative Right ( US and International )
      Radix Journal ( US and International )
      American Renaissance ( US and International )
      National Policy Institute ( US and International –speeches , conferences
      Counter Currents ( US and International )
      Red Ice Creations ( Swedish / International radio podcast interviews

      Check them out

      • Johnny Foreigner

        Blimey, thanks, I will. Cheers.

      • TrueNorthFree

        It was Red Ice radio that began to nibble away at my own deeply entrenched white liberal guilt but it was the Rotherham rapes of white English girls that finally washed away decades of multi-culti mind programming for me. I am awake now and I am determined to help other whites awake.

  • porcelaincheekbones

    it’s called status signalling

    • Planet Vague

      What car do you drive?
      I don’t have a car.

      Status signalling inverted.

      • porcelaincheekbones
        • Planet Vague

          You do not understand the difference between sarcasm and status signalling? Weird.

          • porcelaincheekbones

            just because someone uses a tone does not make it sarcasm nor does it make them funny

          • porcelaincheekbones

            You do not know what status signalling is. Period.

  • Tanya Gold

    I don’t dislike Ukip because I wish to affect virtue at dinner parties. It is because I am the grandchild of immigrants and I think they have helped to create an environment in which – as you may have read – an immigrant man was burnt to death last year. They have made this country feel like a more unpleasant place.

    • akrasia

      Who created the environment where 1400 indigenous females (many underage) were gang raped by Pak*stani immigrants in Rotherham?
      Then there’s Rochdale, Oxford, Sheffield…ad nauseam.
      Who created the environment that allowed a soldier to be killed on the streets of London by you know who?
      I could go on but you know there are many other examples of why Britain is feeling like a more unpleasant place.

      Get a sense of proportion for crying out loud.

      • Tanya Gold

        So all immigrants are rapists and potential murderers eh? What about those who are not?

        • wudyermucuss

          So all anti mass enforced immigrationists are immigrant burners eh?
          What about those that are not,(ie all of them)?

          A link to your story would be helpful too?

          • Kennybhoy


          • Leftyliesrefuted

            If she’s the Tanya Gold who’s a Guardian “writer”, you’re unlikely to get a link. Lefties don’t tend to do evidence.

        • akrasia

          It does not say ALL, it simply references facts, something you fail to provide. Agree with wudyermucuss, a link to the immigrant burnt last year as you state is required.

          Keep your reductive abstraction for a more relevant comment.

        • Jack Smith

          It doesn’t matter whether most immigrants are outright criminals or not. It only matters that the indigenous population gains absolutely nothing worthwhile from mass immigration at all, so there’s no incentive for us to try to separate the terrorist from the non terrorist and the rapist from the non rapist. Immigration just isn’t worth the risk.

    • Pioneer1

      It is the lefty obsession with race and identity politics that causes division and strife.

    • Chingford Man

      What a stupid smear.

    • wudyermucuss

      I think the sudden arrival of 5,000,000 + foreigners has made this country a more unpleasant place.

      • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

        50 years is the new UKIP definition of sudden.Twits.

        • wudyermucuss

          The last 10 years has seen deliberate and unprecedented mass immigration which has drastically altered a stable and previously cohesive society.
          And for what?
          Cheap labour to drive down the masses wages,and some kind of smug ideological guilt tripping about being English.

    • Speedy

      Sorry about the man who got burnt.
      You may have heard about the several thousand English children raped by immigrants recently. I think this has made the country an even more unpleasant place. Although more diverse, which is really all that counts isn’t it?

    • lindzen4pm

      What utter rubbish, and the most wrong-headed smear I have read this election.

    • Kennybhoy

      “… – as you may have read – an immigrant man was burnt to death last year.”

      Link please. The only ones I can up with refer to an incident in Italy…?

    • Tanya – UKIP is NOT against immigration. It is against *UNcontrolled* immigration. It wants immigration on a points-based system so Indians and Chinese and whoever – with the right skills – can come in. Not hordes of low-skilled workers with EU freedom of movement (multiple) rights. And I guess I am the child of immigrants (Dad RAF 30+ years; Mother ex-Indian Army in WW2.)

      I would imagine that ISIS-type atrocities may well have had a part in that death. And that more to do with ignorance of race and faith.

      • Seem to have so annoyed Ms Gold she’s blocked me on Twitter though all I was trying to do was add her to my journolists, not tweet her. Can’t recall having tweeted to her in the past so I guess it must be to do with this post.

    • PS I have only a vague recall of an immigrant being burnt to death and thought he was a Sikh (hence my earlier comment re ISIS, but cannot find any links to it.) Perhaps you could help there?

  • Dan O’Connor

    The main enemy of the Left, is as we all know, to the Right of them

    The main enemy of mainstream Conservatism Inc , or what we know as the Tory party and the Republican party , is not as the Left desperatlely wants us to think , to the Left of them , it is to the Right of them .

    Yes, that’s right . The common enemy of the Globalist/ Internationalist Left and the Globalist Internationlist Conservatism Inc…..is to the right of them .
    They both know that , it is only from that direction that any real threat to their regime exists

    This is why apart from comparitively trivial disagreements and differences , it is not possible to squeeze a Rizla paper between the Left and mainstream Conservatism Inc
    Western universities align perfectly with the people in power .
    Fortune 500 coporations, the 1% ers , donate to all the Left’s favourite causes

    Both the Left and Conservatism Inc pursue social polcies that when put into practice are sociopathically hostile and destructive to their own historical majority populations
    The New Left are an emerging new Techocratic aristocracy that acts as the Left wing of the Capitalist plutocracy.

  • Chingford Man

    I hate the Daily Mail because it is a rancid pile of p**, not to advertise my virtue.

    • wudyermucuss

      Not very inclusive of you.
      Nor diverse.
      But you sound like you may be quivering a bit,if not actually vibrant.

    • Yvon & Barry Stuart-Hargreaves

      I think you may be on to something, but I fear it is much worse than you say. It is an utterly disgusting heap of piss poor journalism, twisting of facts and downright evil ever to be spewed from a media outlet.

    • William_Brown

      The Daily Mail and the Guardian are two sides of the same coin – partial to the point of ridicule.

  • Ken

    I would rather they displayed their virtue with their own money, not ours.

    • Lina R

      They’re always very tight with their own money.

  • lindzen4pm

    Hating UKIP and ‘fighting climate change’ are de rigueur statements for the wankerati.
    Especially so, when their skivvy from Vanuatu emerges from their living space under the stairs to serve the petit fours at £0.75p an hour, and is in earshot.

  • Blakenburg

    My virtue signalling is to ask people to stop pretending and use their head and heart at the same time and see the real world for what it is, and not go for wishful thinking. Reality goes a long way if you stop dreaming !

  • Terry Field

    It is always funny to see people attach themselves to bleeding heart causes and associate with politically correct pink-left politics to get brownie points with their neighbours, and hopefully get off with the naive large-breatsed over-serious labour voting next door 20 year old neighbour. Facebook is chock full with this guff.

  • This article doesn’t go far enough.

    You rightly point out that these virtue-signallers as you call them use signals of intent as a substitute for actually doing good, but what you don’t mention is that very often, they’re actually not good people at all, because they have allowed this hate to twist them until hate is their overriding emotion. Most of the ones I’ve met have actually been thoroughly awful human beings.

  • Jean de Valette

    How interesting that the headline for this story elsewhere on the site reads “Hating UKIP” rather than “Hating the Daily Mail”. What parity, exactly, do you see between the Daily Mail and UKIP? After all, there is none.
    However the same cannot be said when one compares the Spectator to the Daily Mail: both support staying in the corrupt, crippling EU, voting the non-conservative ‘conservatives’ back in, and indeed, unfairly slating UKIP – with made-up stories when necessary – at every opportunity.

  • There is nothing wrong with wanting to be moral. On the contrary, it is what makes us human. It is also human to want to be seen to be moral.

    The problem arises when wanting to be seen to be moral is MORE important to us than actually being moral, especially when the motivation for it is personal, professional and/or political advantage, as it invariably is when politicians demonstrate their “anti-fascist” and “anti-racist” credentials at the expense of native white Britons, i.e. their OWN people, who have had the madness of mass poor-world immigration imposed on them, along with an Orwellian ideology which expects us to “celebrate our own ethnic displacement (white flight), replacement (we have already been reduced to an ethnic minority in large swathes of our major cities) and ultimate demise.

    Post-racial multicultural society and ideology, I have come to realise, serve the state’s (our ruling elite’s) age-old strategy of “divide and rule”, dividing society into a morally superior, i.e. “colour-blind”, elite and the morally inferior, i.e. less colour-blind, masses, who must submit to their ruling elite’s moral authority.

    No one is really “colour-blind” (indifferent to ethnic difference), of course, but can only feign it, humans being the inherently and intensely tribal animal that we are.

  • Anthorny

    Great article. I’ve made a similar comment previously on the media hatred of UKIP, but I can now see that individual virtue signalling manifests itself collectively in the liberal media elite hatred of UKIP.. For example there would never be a mockumentary made imagining The Greens had won the election. The Green future reality would be a barren land with mass unemployment, next to no transport, starvation and millions more stationary windmills to match the immigrant doubling of the population. There would be rioting for food and other unavailable essentials under a leader who would get everything wrong when addressing the populace.

    But that wouldn’t get made. Neither would “Meet The Greens”.

    So as well as “virtue signalling”, I can only conclude that the media and their political associates fear the UKIP vote more than anything else imaginable. I guess it threatens to destabilise the status quo and the identikit alternatives.

  • Siobhan De Bheal

    I love Daily Mail- and constantly extol the virtues of this wonderful institution.Is it for this reason that i never get invited to dinner parties?

  • William_Brown

    It’s all about political correctness, which has seeped like cyanide into every part of human life in the west. It’s about being afraid of speaking your mind, in case your peers judge you negatively.

    Perhaps we will see, to an extent, how much virtual ‘signalling’ is translated into the reality of what some people genuinely think, via the privacy of the voting booths across the country on May 7th.

    I wouldn’t be too hopeful of a ‘candid avalanche’ though, as there are many who think the ‘wrong’ things, who feel so politically disenfranchised, that they simply won’t bother to vote. The tipping point is coming closer, though it has yet to be reached.

  • mr_nicely

    Greate article. Thanks for this. You enunciated what I know is happening but could put my finger on.

  • karen

    In order to ‘virtue signal,’ surely you must believe what you are chanting. People have become hysterical, irrational, ‘dumbed’ down, and believe whatever blatant lies are printed in our left-wing rags, they are sheep-like. Unfortunately, those who are not as easily fooled, the intelligent, open-minded British people who might actually for example, read the UKIP manifesto, are out numbered. Even my children have been verbally attacked by other children because they have expressed an interest in UKIP.

    • Cedders_B

      It depends what you mean by ‘believe’. It is very easy to state belief in something without knowing or understanding what it is; at the same time, those who have investigated, thought and reached rational conclusions are likely to be derided.

  • Jackthesmilingblack

    Notice the way the DM is continuously plugging the paedopaki issue, laying culpability on Labour, the paedophile protection party.
    So not all bad.
    Jack, the Japan Alps Brit

  • Jackthesmilingblack

    Good astrophysics articles. Pictures too.

  • John Andrews

    Cruel people used to go to church to signal their virtue.

  • Annie

    Virtue signalling is a real phenomenon of course but I don’t think your examples are awfully good ones.

    Mishal Husain, probably genuinely feels aggressive towards Farage, given that she knows her family would be in his sight lines.
    Believe it or not many women really do like Mary Beard and it doesn’t occur to us to judge her on her appearance, and besides what on earth is wrong with her appearance? She’s an older woman with grey hair – the horror!
    I hope some men do recognise Page 3 as the demeaning anachronism of the handsy 70s that it so obviously is. I’d be more inclined to think that the men with the opposite point of view are virtue signalling to “the lads”.

  • Annie

    I don’t like the Daily Mail because it is so obviously the worst example of cynical tabloid exploitative media that stokes the worst characteristics in humans.

    The way its photographers stalk women waiting for them to fall over or for a gust of wind to blow up their skirt and show us their pants so the DM can spread them over the front page while feigning concern for them is utterly sickening.

  • Patently E(uropean)

    Psychologically speaking, it’s to a large degree overcompensation for what one truly feels. Why would anyone fee the need to brandish ones sense of compassion or lack of prejudice? People communicate insight and opinion not compassion.

  • Mrs Crewe

    Any friends you have voting Green are announcing they are either really dumb, very deluded or far left anti-Semites.

  • Ill-Liberal

    I can recommend Jon Ronsons book about public shaming for an inside view of when this sort of stuff goes on in a big way. The ‘Twittermob’ is an example of this behaviour when a fair few of these minds get together to ‘do good’. Scary.

  • Marlis frederiksen

    The english elite hates UKIP. Here in Denmark they love to hate the Peoples Party without ever having read their programme or bothered to actually listen to what they are saying. I guess it is the same with Pegida in Germany. If they actually told their friends that they felt sympathetic towards these parties their friends would probably exclude them. They would not be worth knowing. If you are good person you can pass any judgement without bother about facts.That is where political correctness has brought us. It is extremely important for these people to show the world how good they are by telling everybody how much they hate these parties and how racist and bad they are. To me they are like sheep following everybody else without having the guts to have an individual thought. Then we have politicians who are “good” but only with other peoples money. I was brought up to do good things without a single person having to know about it. How oldfashioned.

    • Lina R

      I agree with your analysis. If you ever say immigration is too high, immediately a Leftie will denounce you as racist and the discussion ends there. The Left band round terms like racist and sexism where it is not applicable and show no tolerance for views not akin to their own. And yet, if they would allow the immigration debate to happen, they would find it far more nuanced and sympathetic.

  • Roger James Michael Sutherland

    The far-left doesn’t hate the Daily Mail as much as the Daily Mail hates the far-right and anyone else with a solution to the Malaise.

  • Alienwoman

    Nothing tops the way the Guardian hate Israel, thereby supporting the poor Palestinians.
    When Palestinians are abused by Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, or Jordan, or beheaded by ISIS… well that’s just sad, but nobody seems to froth at the mouth about that..

  • Dogsnob

    These people are temporarily denied one of their favourites. The staple dig at whatever incumbent US President, is strangely out of bounds these days for some reason?

  • mrsjosephinehydehartley

    The idea of a ” virtue signal” is a really poor expression, obviously more to do with some burgeoning new trend. Better to adopt a simple habit I think, which are always free and never overblown.

  • Lina R

    So true. Whenever Ukip is mentioned amongst lefty people I know – the usual jargon about them being racists, fascists, the BNP in blazers is always the default position. When I respond with – what’s wrong with Britain governing itself, they agree. When I then say – what’s wrong with having a controlled immigration system like Australia, they initially respond with Australia is racist, but within minutes, they’re agreeing we can’t have cities the size of Birmingham arriving every year… People just want to hate Ukip.

  • ButcombeMan

    One of the most successful efforts by Alistair Campbell (apart from getting us into the Iraq war on a false pretext) was his campaign against the Mail.

    The Mail used to frighten Blair.

    Hence the smears.

    Much of the media is now adopting the same approach with UKIP, it happens here, smear after smear and gross misrepresentation.

    I am voting UKIP regardless, I have had enough.

    I think the pollsters are going to be surprised by the UK vote, if not the number of seats.

  • ned

    you can have dislike for the hatred that the daily mail spreads and do some good things as well…

  • Marc

    Yeah this article is right. Poor people are stupid and lazy and all they do is moan without getting up off their lazy, poor arses and doing something about it. They should all just pipe down and shut up and realise that their leftie whingeing will get them nowhere.

  • DaHitman

    The fascist left do hate the DM but loads troll it which tells you something about their mentality

  • Karl Montague

    Good to know you’re better than us virtue signalling lefties!

    Glad you could communicate it so effectively with the use of examples of how we signal our virtues all over the place.

    Definitely not hypocritical and a little weird. 🙂

  • Peter George Stewart

    This article nails it. I’m 56, more to the Left/liberal side of the spectrum (except re. economics), but this syndrome has been bugging me more and more for years, and it’s been heightened by the internet.

    The Left really needs to get into some serious self-examination. I think part of the problem is that, in the long view, the Left has suffered a number of serious hits to its ideological pride over the years (going way back to Khruschev’s revelations in 1956), and cognitive dissonance has resulted in an unwillingness to admit that, on some important issues (not all, but some) it has been, just simply … wrong. This is dissonant because the Left’s self-image is that it’s super-smart. The result has been a descent into ideological triviality, coincindent with ascendance in the media, academia and opinion-forming fields, resulting in this virtue signalling business being more or less the hollow core of whatever’s left.

    The Left “tribe” needs to take courage and re-think. The heart of the Left is caring for the poor and disadvantaged, and trying, in some way, to ameliorate the “unfair” effects of natural advantage, etc. That is a great thing – and even the sensible Right will admit that it’s an absolutely necessary function in a democracy. But since most of the ideology from Marxism on has proved to be bad at facilitating this core goal, and even bad at predicting what will happen on the basis of its theories, there needs to be some new thought, new analysis, and a re-thinking from first principles.

    I believe that, given this kind of return to first principles, people on the Left will eventually realize that they are really liberals at heart, and that liberalism made a huge mistake when it took that Marxist, or pseudo-Marxist turn from the cusp of the 19th and 20th centuries onwards. That turn has led, ultimately, to a cul de sac.

    A re-tracing of steps back to Locke, the Scottish Enlightenment philosophers and J.S. Mill, and then some forward thinking bringing liberal ideas up to the present would, I think, relieve people who have this feeling, this instinct to stand up for those whom nature has given a raw deal, from a century and a half of error, and make liberalism intellectually and morally respectable – and a force to be reckoned with, a force that will always win against the narrow-minded, privilege-supporting aspect of the Right – again.

    (The Right proper has its own job to do, in standing up for ideas and ways of life that are time-tested – there always has to be that balance, that to and fro, between conservatism and progressivism; and properly understood, neither “side” should feel ashamed of itself, or view the other as anything more than an “enemy” in a necessary game.)

  • Tynam

    The fundamental problem with this article is that’s it’s too busy indulging in it’s own positional signalling to actually complete its analysis.

    The author conveniently pretends to ignore the possibility of any human being actually believing in or accomplishing anything – ever – in order to dismiss all opposition (never his allies) as posturing, by painting left-wing positions – and only the left-wing ones – as mere signalling.

    This is most telling when discussing Cameron – even when talking about the Conservatives, he picks a supposedly left issue – foreign aid – as an example.


    It’s not as if there’s any shortage of right-wing examples in line with major Conservative policy.

    When Cameron campaigns against minimum wage rises, he is signalling “I care about the economy as a whole and I’m a good neo-liberal who ignores all the economists telling him that won’t work.”

    When Smith says “scroungers” thirteen times per interview before giving another few hundred million to ATOS, he’s virtue-signalling “I am on the side of hard-working people like you”, before enacting policies that are exactly the opposite.

    When Cameron says “family values”, he’s signalling the way he wants to be seen, not actually planning any measures to strengthen families.

    When he brings up his dead son for the twentieth time just when he might have to answer an awkward question about the NHS, he’s signalling “I care about the NHS and how dare you suggest otherwise” – fraudulently, so he can avoid actually having to answer for it.

    And yet none of these examples crossed your pen.

    Why not? Surely they’re much more important to Conservative policy than the foreign aid budget!

    But you couldn’t use them, because the key subtext of this entire article is that left-wingers are “virtue signalling”, but right-wingers are actually virtuous.

    In other words, this whole article is indulging, in the worst way, the sin it purports
    to complain of – *positioning* itself as caring about the quality of our
    discourse, but actually just *signalling* an interest in the quality of discourse, while undermining it. It’s chock-full of signals of “I’m a heartland Conservative” and “all my political opponents have no real belief”.

    Cheap rhetoric, disguised under skilled debate.

    I utterly defy this knowingly false characterisation. It’s intended to stifle debate, by painting all opposition statements as “virtue signals”.

    Screw that.

    I support an increase in minimum wage because economists say it would improve the entire economy for all of us, and they’re the experts. I don’t need to outbid anyone to show how much I care, since what I care about most are the facts.

    I declare the Sun degrading and embarrassing *because I think it’s degrading and embarrassing*. If I want to “go indicate my respect for women”, I’ll do that with my behaviour – say, by actually treating women like human beings.

    But this possibility is, apparently, to be excluded from our discourse. Nobody shall ever be allowed to stand up for any ideal, because they’d just be “positioning” themselves.

    It’s smoothly-argued, but still meretricious nonsense.

  • sfin

    “You can declare ‘Page 3 of the Sun was degrading and embarrassing’ if you are a man: this indicates your great respect for women.”

    It also marks you out as a limp d*cked beta male, in my view!

    The page 3 girls are not forced to do this, they choose to make the most of their assets, and I (and my nether regions) are fully upstanding in supporting them.

  • fahrhb

    Matthew 6:1-4

  • Lokki

    The TV Show Southpark did an episode a few years back where the virtuous people of the city began, as you elegantly put it, virtue signaling through buying hybrid electric cars, creating a tremendous ‘Smug’ problem.

    • Mike Davies

      They have an episode in the new season (released last week) thats all about wholefoods and virtue signalling.

  • BadBruceLorraine

    Whole Foods is so vituous they sell halal products promoting the Islamic way of life. I wonder if Whole Foods cares if they are also promoting the core beliefs of islam as well, to convert, subjucate making them feel subdued or kill every non-believer on the planet? Whole Foods is so virtuous I refuse to shop there.

  • Don’s Johnson

    Someone should send this to Gawker. It literally sums up the site and everyone on it. Bunch of sanctimonious… Can I curse?

    • BadBruceLorraine

      With the handle of ‘Don’s Johnson’ you’re asking if you can curse? Hysterical, you got my heart pumping vigorously this morning. Thank You, Good LOL post.

    • BadBruceLorraine

      With the handle of ‘Don’s Johnson’ you’re asking if you can curse? Hysterical, you got my heart pumping vigorously this morning. Thank You, Good LOL post.

  • jzlondon

    I hate UKIP. I also give money to charity. My real name is not “jzlondon” or, indeed, anything close to that. Am I virtue signalling here? And, if so, to whom?

  • Smithereens

    “liberal media-elite opinions” – No, sorry. You can’t do that. That simply doesn’t work in this country when only two out the twelve national newspapers we now have are in any sense left-leaning – and all the others are government supporting. Even the big regionals. Then there’s the Murdoch owned Sky News (or “Fox Lite” as we might call it), ITV News, MADE BY SKY – the statistically and academically proven right-leaning BBC (Google the study), leaving Channel 4 the only news station with any sense of social justice.

    • Bertie

      Really – only two? What do you classify as a newspaper. Also helps that the state broadcaster is Left which evens the field considerably.

      Lefty papers – Guardian, Mirror, Daily Star, Independent, Observer
      In middle – The Times, Financial Times
      Righty – Telegraph, Daily Mail, The Sun

      Looks more Left to me. Times certainly isnt Right wing.Nor FT.
      Am missing 2 papers –

      And there is no way in a month of sundays that the BEEB is right wing. What kind of revisionism is that. Google which study? By whom?

      • Smithereens

        You counted the Guardian twice (The Observer is The Guardian on Sunday), missed out the Daily Express and categorised the right wing Times and Financial Times as “in the middle”. If we are on the level of anecdotal incredulity, then I invoke that in your assertion that the “Times certainly isnt Right wing.Nor FT.”

        Neither attacks the left with the vinegar of the Mail, Sun or Express – but The Times and FT supported the Tories in the last two elections (only backing Blair during the Murdoch, New Labour blip).

        The Independent backed the coalition in the last election – so, no, it’s not really “on the left” either. Neither is the Star (which I didn’t count at all – it barely has any circulation or qualifies as a “newspaper”). The Daily Star is – at best – politically neutral (because it contains no political news). It backed no political party in 2010 (though there were some anti-Labour stories in the run up to election) and it supported the coalition in 2015. Beyond that, it is reactionary and aspirational in content (and, therefore, tacitly right wing).

        As for the BBC, in research conducted by the BBC Trust in 2012 (and subsequently updated in 2014) – the BBC was found to favour viewpoints shown by right wing politicians, empirically (not qualitatively or anecdotally, as your confirmation bias allows).

        So, those are the facts. Choose to believe them or not – dismiss whichever ones you can to selectively support your opinion. Doesn’t stop ’em being true.

        • Bertie

          Given I don’t even read the Observer(nor the Guardian I wasn’t aware the latter owned it)

          Yes, mea cupla , completely missed out the Daily Express but easy to do when you don’t read the tabloids.

          The Times is definitely Left/Centre left on social/lifestyle.
          Ft is similarly Left/Centre Left on all things controversial – Global Warming, Immigration, EU etc etc

          So yes they are both Left/Centre and not Right wing.

          With regard to your comments pertaining to neither Times/FT attacking the Left with same ferocity as Mail,Sun – yes, that’s because they are not Right wing papers but Centre/Centre Left ones.

          so what if Times/FT supported the Tories – the Sun,that bastion of Right Wingery supported Labour for how many elections?

          The Indie clearly is on the Left – you just have to persuade its contributions pertaining to Global Warming, Immigration, EU. It shares similar with Guardian,the FT and all those other lefty inclined publications I pigeon holed correctly.

          “As for the BBC, in research conducted by the BBC Trust in 2012 (and
          subsequently updated in 2014) – the BBC was found to favour viewpoints
          shown by right wing politicians, empirically (not qualitatively or
          anecdotally, as your confirmation bias allows).”

          That’s just revisionist tosh – even the BBC admitted they were biased. I thought I’d heard it all but you really take the biscuit with that claim.

          “Yes, we are biased on religion and politics, admit BBC executives”

          We are biased, admit the stars of BBC News

          BBC has deep liberal bias, executive admits

          So no, those aren’t the facts as you so disingenuously claim.In fact, they are anything but the facts as a series of links has evidenced.

          I can dismiss them all because you’ve shown no evidence to the contrary.

          Is the BBC biased about Israel? YES
          Is the BBC biased about Global Warming?Yes
          Is the BBC biased about Immigration? Yes

          Nick Robinson confirms what we knew already: BBC is biased

          Is the BBC biased about EU? Yes.

          Criticism of the BBC – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_the_BBCJump to Pro-Muslim bias – [edit]. Hindu and Sikh leaders in the United Kingdom have accused the BBC of pandering to Britain’s Muslim community by .

          Is there anything the BBC isn’t biased about???

          You clearly haven’t a scooby

          • Smithereens

            I give you links to university research – you offer links to the Daily Mail and Ukip. Says it all, really.

          • Bertie

            I gave you links to the telegraph and Wikipedia as well FYI!
            Fact you claim erroneously as you do says it all.

          • Smithereens

            Just digging the hole deeper.

          • Bertie

            How’s proving you are lying in your last statement digging the hole deeper then Einstein.

            Why are my sources(Telegraph, Wiki,Mail ,UKIP) any less worthy than your biased University research!

            Didn’t see any of your “Uni research links either in the last two or so replies of yours!)

            You just make it up as you go along don’t you.

          • Smithereens

            Because the Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail are right wing newspapers, with a clear agenda. Wikipedia is crowd edited and notoriously susceptible to user bias. As for the Ukip website… do I really need to say that it’s in their interest to present a particular view?

            You “proved” nothing.

            University research, on the other hand, has a series of checks and balances in place to ensure neutrality, from ethical clearance of methodology through to peer review.

            But the main reason I know that I’m right is that you keep insulting me personally – because, ultimately – that’s all you have.

          • Bertie

            And the Uni research isn’t produced on the basis of an underlying left wing bent?

            Checks and balances – pull the other one. It’s as susceptible to inbuilt biases and the conclusions being sought as any media source is.

            I’ve proved as much as you have, and you know it. I’ve given you 4 different sources, yet you are seemingly only able to provide one. Says it all.

            The main reason you claim that convinces you are right is that I keep insulting you? Really? Where did I do that?

            Questioning your impartiality, and your conclusions is not insulting you – it’s called disagreeing with your underlying premise and subsequent conclusions!

            In fact one could go as far as to say the one who has engaged in said insulting is actually YOU!

          • Smithereens

            “And the Uni research isn’t produced on the basis of an underlying left wing bent?”


            “Checks and balances – pull the other one. It’s as susceptible to inbuilt biases and the conclusions being sought as any media source is.”

            If you had any sort of higher education, you would know that wasn’t true.

            “I’ve proved as much as you have, and you know it. I’ve given you 4 different sources, yet you are seemingly only able to provide one. Says it all.”

            Four untenable sources with zero credibility.

            “I’ve proved as much as you have, and you know it.”

            You haven’t and I don’t.

            “Questioning your impartiality, and your conclusions is not insulting you – it’s called disagreeing with your underlying premise and subsequent conclusions!”

            No – but this is: “You clearly haven’t a scooby” “You just make it up as you go along don’t you.”

            “In fact one could go as far as to say the one who has engaged in said insulting is actually YOU!”

            Your Mum.

          • Bertie

            I’ve plenty of higher education thanks so am fully aware of manipulations that take place in such establishments(topic dependent of course) and that such publications are not bias free,as you disingenuously claim..So no, your source is not superior to the four I provided – they are all beset with the same integrity issues as they all are biased, in some way.

            My four sources are not without zero credibility in as much as your Uni source is not without zero credibility. The fact you claim so says it all..as does your whole “Looking down your nose at people that disagree with you” tone

            You were incorrect with your initial premise that the media is predominantly right wing orientated – it isnt. (Unless of course you’re an advocate of Jeremy Corbyn,in which case such a suggestion might hold some water.)

            As to your sign off – puerile.

            Bet you’re fun to be around.

          • Smithereens

            I love it when I can just reuse material:

            Because the Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail are right wing newspapers, with a clear agenda. Wikipedia is crowd edited and notoriously susceptible to user bias. As for the Ukip website… do I really need to say that it’s in their interest to present a particular view?

            You “proved” nothing.

            University research, on the other hand, has a series of checks and balances in place to ensure neutrality, from ethical clearance of methodology through to peer review.

            But the main reason I know that I’m right is that you keep insulting me personally – because, ultimately – that’s all you have.

          • The_greyhound

            “University research, on the other hand, has a series of checks and
            balances in place to ensure neutrality, from ethical clearance of
            methodology through to peer review.”

            It purports to.

            In reality anything coming out of any Social “Sciences” department is going to be completely tainted by leftwing bias, and therefore worthless. Most Universities are merely technical colleges, masquerading; and academics F.E. lecturers under another name. Only a booby would be overawed by such unprepossessing credentials.

      • Purple phoenix

        They’re all Establishment controlled. That’s your first hurdle, if you really want to know how the world turns.

        The ‘journalists’ all drink in the same bars and work for the same boss.


        • Bertie

          Agree completely.
          I cant believe Smithereens has the gall to claim only 2 out of 12 are left wing
          leaning. We know which side he is batting from..

  • Donnie Vortex

    Sounds like a load of tosh to me. Furthermore, isn’t this whole article in itself ‘Virtual Signalling’ as you define it, hinting to others that you are so virtuous you won’t even mention all the good stuff your doing, just letting us imagine all the 20 quid notes you clandestinely slip into tramps pockets when no-ones looking. There are serious problems with this pseudo-scientific, faux psychological term and the non-philosophy it is based on.

    • Bill Benson

      I’ve think we’ve found a live one.

      • janjansen

        yes yes yes!
        my thoughts exactly!

      • The_greyhound

        But is it sentient?

  • Callipygian


  • Grant Melville

    As ever, the word of God has an answer for the societal evils of any time in the history of mankind.

    “When therefore thou doest alms, sound not a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may have glory from men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand does; so that thine alms may be in secret, and thy Father who sees in secret will render it to thee.” – Matthew 6:2-4

    Naturally, it’s very difficult us to hide our virtue. Very few of us want our giving to be in secret – we feel that if we’ve done something selfless that’s it’s only fair we should be rewarded with a bit of recognition. But that’s man’s thinking, and God’s thinking is the total opposite of that.

  • Whitehall

    “Pride goeth before Destruction and a haughty spirit before the Fall.”
    An eternal verity if there ever was one.
    Just try and engage a Signaler in a discussion of the pros and cons of their prideful topic. It can’t be done, at least not on a rational basis. A least someone who doubles their own grocery bill by shopping at Whole Foods is using their own money. Most other forms involve OPM.

  • virtue signalling: “I’m better than those horrible people over there because I have pointed out that they are signalling their virtue by having an opinion on something (but no, not I, because I would never)” sorry friend, but this cuts both way, dunnit?

    • Simon Jenkins

      It’s funny how this entire article is an attempt to virtue-signal how the author is a much better person than those mean insincere lefties.

    • int_9

      Nope, because he’s not pointing out that he’s above such a behaviour, merely the signalling and its expression which occurs within the space of the left.

  • Mac

    virtue signalling – the new dog whistle word for anti-pc dullards

    • DQ

      That’s not very PC of you! My feelings got hurt. And at the end of the day, all that
      matters is placating others feelings with soothing platitudes. Now soothe and placate me Macy Boy!