I see Eric Pickles is trying to keep the old war on Christmas meme alive. What a pillock.
First off, he should have some self-respect and not import political slogans from right wing nutjobs in America. The whole “war on Christmas” nonsense started over there as part of the whole “why can’t we live in the 50s anymore?” thing that many white people are going through. I do have a degree of sympathy for people not quite coping with the changes happening around them. But not the people that exploit them writing books like The War on Christmas: How the Liberal Plot to Ban the Sacred Christian Holiday Is Worse Than You Thought, which was high on the list when I googled for the origins of the phrase. That author follows it up with the no doubt equally magnificent How the Left Swiftboated America: The Liberal Media Conspiracy to Make You Think George Bush Was the Worst President in History.
He also references the Grinch, also part of the American right wing playbook on using religion as a political weapon. Note the irony of using a secular character to get a religious message across. Does Pickles realise how much he demeans the Christian faith by reducing it to fancy lights and pretty pictures?
Eric Pickles doesn’t strike me as savvy enough to realise that the current right wing in America is generally seen as one of the most destructive forces on the planet. He may not even realise where the origin of lines that he is probably only repeating, parrot-like. But it shouldn’t be too hard to realise that if you have a problem with political correctness – which essentially involves being told what the right thing to say and do is – then you shouldn’t be telling people what the right thing to say and do is.
Methinks by the next general election, the best thing Eric Pickles will have done is give the Lib Dems a long list of examples of how the Tories just don’t understand what “localism” means.