I have been prodded into this post on the subject of George Orwell by two recent events. Needless to say, I know virtually nothing about the man but, hey, when did that ever stop me tapping away? The first event was reported in the MSM when, and I'm hazy on the details, some 'Pecksniff' in a local council decided that a statue to Orwell could not be erected because he was - too Tory! Blimey, I thought, that sounds like subtle thinking from a 'Pecksniff' because Orwell is generally known as a Leftie. The second event, however, confirmed the 'Pecksniff'; it was an article on Orwell in The Weekly Standard by John P. Rossi and the title was The Tory Anarchist.
Now I had better 'fess up and tell you that my ignorance of George Orwell is yet another of those pebbles in the shoes of my conscience (there are so many I wonder why I bother giving my conscience shoes to wear!) which niggles away at me. The very little I do know, or think I know, of George Orwell makes me suspect that he was a very great Englishman. He was one of those rarities, it seems to me, who was able to combine great passion, enough anyway to make him volunteer for someone else's war, with calm detachment which allowed him to see through the fakery of the great 'religions' of his time, like the British Empire, and Communism. To tell truth and shame these devils took considerable physical and moral courage.
So, there is my mea culpa, but now I need some of you swots to recommend a good biography, or even, just a good assessment of his life and works. I am now, and always have been, much given to hero-worship and I sense that George Orwell was one of life's real heroes.