Christopher Booker died today – the original Brexiteer.

His last piece in The Telegraph reads –

One of the first examples I uncovered in the early days of my column, soon with the aid of thousands of letters from Telegraph readers, was the hidden revolution then taking place in the way Britain was governed, evident in the sudden, immensely damaging impact on every kind of business of a newly officious type of bureaucracy.

This was notably but not exclusively due to the avalanche of directives now coming from the EU with the advent of the single market. But what it reflected was an unprecedented shift of power from our own elected politicians to an anonymously unaccountable new system of law-making, which I soon discovered from discussions with ministers even they did not begin to understand.

Thus in the Nineties, among countless other examples, I was gradually able to expose the disaster being imposed on our fishermen by the Common Fisheries Policy. Another was the Government’s ruthless cover-up of the terrifying damage being inflicted on the health of thousands of sheep farmers and many others by forcing them to be unwittingly exposed to highly toxic nerve-agent organophosphate (OP) pesticides.

By 1996, based largely on what I had written in The Sunday Telegraph, my expert colleague Dr Richard North and I were able to co-author a book The Castle of Lies, subtitled “Why Britain Must Get Out of Europe”, at a time when this was still scorned as just a ridiculously eccentric thing to suggest. By 2003 we were able to follow this up with The Great Deception, an exhaustively researched history of “the European project” which for the first time revealed the true story of how the attempt to create a “United States of Europe” had come about, much of which had never been brought to light before.

In more recent years, as we have watched our entire system of government – both in “Europe” and Britain – becoming ever more dysfunctional, ever more out of touch with reality and those it rules over, I fear the tone of my column has become ever more apocalyptic.

I have found even grander themes to write about, such as our suicidal national energy policy, based on the “decarbonising” of our economy, which can only end in our lights going out and much else; and the even greater self-deception which lies behind it: the West’s obsession with catastrophic global warming, at a time when the rest of the world, led by China and India, is taking not the slightest notice, as it continues to build thousands more coal-fired power stations.

This is only one symptom of the way in which the societies of the West, spoiled by decades of the greatest material prosperity the world has ever known, fuelled by a mounting sea of debt, have been showing all the signs of what, in another age, would have been seen as “decadence”.

Another symptom has been the unprecedented unleashing of every kind of individual and collective egotism, expressed not just in the anger and exhibitionism of the “anti-social media” but in the astonishing pressure to conform with the intolerant puritanical groupthink behind every kind of “political correctness”.

We have seen not only the wholesale disintegration of traditional family life but also that horrifying scandal which for nine years was another theme of my column, as I tried to expose the dehumanising way in which our ultra-secretive state “child protection” system has gone so tragically off the rails.

And now, to add to all this, we watch aghast at how our infantilised politicians are sleepwalking us towards disaster over Brexit. It was way back in the Nineties, long before it was fashionable, that I first began using the term “the Westminster bubble” to describe how our political class had begun to cut itself off from the real world into a self-regarding little world of its own.

We are told we should try to leave the world in slightly better shape than we found it. But as I prepare to leave it, I have too long felt that I was no longer trying to change it and was only writing its epitaph.

Nevertheless I cannot forget all the thousands of admirable people I have come across through my years writing for the Telegraph. To them and all my loyal readers I am profoundly grateful.


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