"Freedom and Reality" - Enoch Powell


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Freedom & Reality
John Cavalier
Written by John

2 min read

This fortnight on the Pipe Stream we featured Enoch Powell's Freedom & Reality and, in a slight change of format from the previous Pipe Streams, we will continue to read Freedom & Reality from cover to cover over the next few months until complete. You can watch pages 1-24 on the embedded Youtube link below:

Why am I breaking with the established format and reading the whole book? I believe Enoch Powell is wrongly remembered by many for only a single speech; the Birmingham speech (perhaps slightly better known as 'Rivers of Blood'). Because of this he is falsely accused as being a racist or a fascist or any number of other, derisory, 'ists'. Unfortunately all of his works, and there are many, are long out of print. Though some can be picked up second hand at relatively modest prices, as time goes on and copies fall into disrepair the price is only likely to increase and the words within will become inaccessible to many.

Powell's writings and speeches extend far beyond the topic of immigration and much of it is still relevant today. I have a theory that the reason that the left are so keen to tar Powell, unfairly, with their bitter brush is because he, like Margaret Thatcher (who in many ways was a student of his), represented one of the most significant threats to the post-war consensus and the socialist state.

It is convenient to the left that, due to the passing of time, his legacy is able to be distilled in to a few slang terms, commonly used to silence debate or shut out dissent (the very same strategy used to obfuscate Thatcher's economic legacy) as it also makes any discussion of his economic policy, a policy diametrically opposed to their own, impossible. By source quibbling they are able to avoid answering the tough topic of economics in particular. I make no bones about being a shameless apologist for his broader legacy and in making some of his works available to all, as I hope to do here, we can remember his lifetime of service to the United Kingdom as a professor, a soldier, a statesman, a poet, a philologist and a philosopher in an appropriate light and begin to do so without fear of cancellation for the veneration of one of the 20th centuries most remarkable politicians.

In Freedom & Reality Powell concentrates on the importance of the freedom, or rights, of the individual but also the reality in which those rights reside. Topics he considers include:

  • The nature of capitalism and its relevance to the free society
  • The fallacy and failures of central planning
  • The harms of interventionism
  • The detrimental impact of price controls
  • How socialism is obtained through inflation
  • Thoughts on defence and the Commonwealth
  • Immigration

Join me over the coming months as we explore the political and social thought of Enoch Powell and consider the real world impact that implementing this thought would have today. If you'd like to be involved please reach out to me on twitter or in my discord.

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