Setting the Record Straight on Another Churchill Myth

Churchill’s Headmaster: The ‘Sadist’ who Nearly Saved the British Empire
By Edward Dutton
Melbourne: Manticore Press, 2019

There will never be enough men of outstanding virtue to satisfy the human need for heroes, and one fertile source of the counterfeits necessary to make up the difference, as Ed Dutton points out, is wartime leaders:

There is a tendency to make sense of a devastated world by hero-worshipping the leader and also by finding some means of justifying all of the suffering, meaning that it was essential that the prosecutor of the war was beyond reproach. It has been found that the more people invest in something, the more they need to convince themselves that they have done the right thing. This is why people can react in such an irrational way if it is demonstrated to them that someone whom they admire — who is central, to some degree, to the way in which they structure the world — is simply not who they thought they were. They cannot cope with the fact that they have been duped.

In my youth, Winston Churchill regularly alternated with Jesus Christ as winner of an annual poll concerning the ‘greatest man who ever lived.’ We had a bust of him in our home. He is England’s national hero, and as Ed Dutton writes, many of the countless biographies of him ‘are nothing more than hagiographies that rehash and exaggerate the adulation for him in earlier hagiographies.’

Yet for those willing to listen, it is not hard to collect damning evidence against Churchill. As First Lord of the Admiralty during World War I, he was in charge of the disastrous Gallipoli Campaign, which led to 140,000 unnecessary allied deaths. As Chancellor of the Exchequer, he kept Britain on the Gold Standard, making industry uncompetitive and prolonging the Depression. Most seriously, he did not ‘stand up to Nazi aggression’ in 1940 as the usual story goes, but did all he could to force Hitler into a war with Britain that Hitler wished to avoid. It was Churchill who ordered the bombing of nonmilitary targets in Germany—including Dresden—merely to kill as many German civilians as possible and demoralize the survivors. At war’s end, he agreed not only to hand Eastern Europe over to Stalin but also to the forcible repatriation of all Soviet citizens who managed to escape to the West: the shameful episode known as ‘Operation Keelhaul.’

Much of Churchill’s voluminous writing amounted to attempts to justify or downplay his mistakes, something he acknowledged himself with the famous quip: ‘History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it.’ His personal shortcomings were also considerable, including alcoholism, chronic gambling and a constant tendency to live beyond his means and scrounge off others. Dutton writes of Churchill as having

a fantastic sense of entitlement, dishonesty, untrustworthiness, and not caring about the suffering of others. [He] took his country into an avoidable war, bankrupted it, and so lost that country its Empire and left it too exhausted to defend itself. This commenced the process of mass immigration from developing countries which … led to many difficulties, such as rising distrust, Islamic terrorism, and the destruction of other traditions vital to holding the country together.

In the present work, Dutton focuses on one relatively minor biographical myth about Churchill, but the result is a useful illustration of how such myths begin, spread, and are gradually embellished until they entirely overwhelm the historical reality.

Between the ages of seven and nine, Winston Churchill attended St. George’s School, Ascot, a preparatory school for children going on to England’s prestigious ‘public’ (i.e., private and exclusive) schools. In his 1930 autobiography My Life: A Roving Commission, Churchill left a highly negative account of his time there, exclaiming: ‘How I hated this school….’

As Churchill recounts it, on the day he arrived he was handed a page with the declension of the Latin word mensa, meaning table, and commanded to memorize it. He did so, but unluckily asked the teacher about the meaning of the vocative case. The teacher explained that it would be used when ‘speaking to a table.’ The seven-year-old Churchill protested: ‘But I never do!’ The humorless teacher then warned him: ‘If you are impertinent you will be punished, and punished, let me tell you, very severely.’ Millions are familiar with this little incident from its inclusion in Richard Attenborough’s film Young Winston (1972).

Churchill recalls that the teacher’s warning was very much to the point:

Flogging with the birch, in the Eton-fashion, was a great feature of the curriculum. But I am sure no Eton boy, and certainly no Harrow boy in my day, ever received such a cruel flogging as this headmaster was accustomed to inflict on little boys who were in his care and power. They exceeded in severity anything that would be tolerated in any of the Reformatories under the Home Office. Two or three times a month the whole school was marshalled into the Library and one or more delinquents was hauled off to an adjoining apartment by the two head boys, and there flogged until they bled freely, while the rest of us sat quaking, listening to their screams.

Churchill disliked the frequent High Church religious services in the chapel, but recalls that ‘I experienced the fullest applications of the secular arm’—in other words, was frequently subjected to flogging himself.

After two years, he relates, he was withdrawn from St. George’s due to poor health, but he does not connect this with the birchings he received.

Dutton gives a fascinating account of how this basic story has been embroidered by Churchill’s worshipful biographers. The floggings which Churchill himself describes as having been administered to ‘one or more delinquents…two or three times a month’ become daily ordeals meted out to all pupils for the slightest infraction. The headmaster who administered the punishment, the Rev. Herbert William Sneyd-Kynnersley, gets turned into a sadistic pederast who beat the boys merely for his own sexual gratification. Churchill is said to have been removed from St. George’s because his nanny discovered horrifying wounds on his backside. There even exist entirely fanciful accounts of Churchill returning to Aston as a young adult to seek revenge on his tormenter.

As Dutton explains, the glorification of Churchill as a national hero has involved the demonizing of his enemies. The bulk of his book is concerned with setting the record straight—both on the Rev. Sneyd-Kinnersly and on the young Churchill himself.

Churchill’s school reports from St. George’s make clear that he was—in spite of natural gifts which his teachers recognized—a disgracefully behaved pupil. One summer term,

Churchill managed to be late for class 19 times and his report stated that he ‘Does not understand the meaning of hard work.’ In autumn 1883, H. Martin Cooke wrote on Churchill’s report card that Churchill ‘began well but latterly has been very naughty.’

There was a slight improvement in the first half term of 1884, when it became clear that Churchill was very good at Mathematics and other subjects which interested him. However, the headmaster remarked, ‘He is rather greedy at meals.’ In the second half term of 1884, Cooke wrote on Churchill’s report, under ‘Diligence’: ‘Conduct has been exceedingly bad. He is not to be trusted to do any one thing. He has however notwithstanding made decided progress.’ He had been late 20 times with Cooke noting it was ‘Very disgraceful’ and the headmaster interjecting to add ‘Very bad.’ Under ‘General Conduct,’ [Sneyd-Kynnersley adds] that Churchill is ‘a constant trouble to somebody and is always in some scrape or other.’ Under headmaster’s remarks, he has written: ‘He cannot be trusted to behave himself anywhere. He has very good abilities.’ By the summer term, things had slightly improved, his conduct being ‘Fair on the whole but he still gives a great deal of trouble.’

Churchill excelled in history and geography as well as mathematics, but, as Dutton notes, ‘seems to have lacked the impulse control and future orientation to bother with subjects that didn’t interest him.’ There exists testimony that he started fights with other boys and stole food from them. His language has been described as ‘appalling . . . straight out of the stables of Blenheim Palace’—shocking to the fastidious Victorians.

One former classmate described him as a ‘quarrelsome’ boy who ‘got on everyone’s nerves.’ Churchill himself recalled the other boys’ ridiculing him, beating him and pelting him with cricket balls. There even exists some testimony regarding him from pupils who came to St. George after he had left: his misbehavior had become part of school lore. The distinguished scholar and writer Sir Maurice Baring, e.g., recalled:

Dreadful legends were told about Churchill, who had been taken away from the school. His naughtiness seemed to surpass anything. He had been flogged for taking sugar from the pantry and, so far from being penitent, he had taken the Headmaster’s sacred straw hat from where it hung over the door and kicked it to pieces. His sojourn at the school had been one long feud with authority. The boys did not seem to sympathize with him.

Dutton is skeptical of the straw hat episode, which might have been grounds for expulsion had it really occurred, but it is clear Churchill was the sort of pupil around whom such legends were woven. Dutton concludes that Churchill was ‘high on the psychopathic personality spectrum,’ involving such traits as

inability to sustain consistent work behavior, non-conformity, irritability and aggressiveness, failure to honour financial obligations, frequent lying, failure to plan ahead, and impulsivity, including addiction-proneness, reckless behavior, [and] lack of remorse.

Punishment by birching may be shocking to a generation which has even banned spanking from most European countries. It was, however, normal in the Victorian age, and there existed a rational for it:

It was understood at the time that schools such as Sneyd-Kynnersley’s aimed, as did public schools, to do more than simply teach children to read, write and do sums. Part of their purpose was to mould extremely privileged boys, who had materially never really wanted for anything, into suitable men to run the British Empire. In many respects, the schools were akin to the brutal rites of passage into adulthood that are undergone by boys as they turn into men in many tribal societies. These boys, like boys in such tribes, were their societies’ future warriors and had to be made into warriors: people who would obey authority, keep their emotions under control, endure physical pain, be mentally resilient, live for the future, make sacrifices for others and empathise with them, but have the ability to act lethally towards the enemy at the precisely appropriate moment.

St. George School’s motto, in fact, was Vincent Qui Se Vincunt – ‘They will conquer who conquer themselves.’ The gifted but lazy and impulsive Churchill—grandson of a Duke, son of an MP and raised amid luxury—was ‘precisely the kind of person which the public school system was developed to tame.’ Dutton surmises that it may well have been beneficial for both Churchill and the twentieth-century world he helped shape had he spent rather more time under a strict disciplinary regime like that of St. George’s.

Dutton devotes most of his book to a study of the alleged ‘perverted sadist’ Herbert William Sneyd-Kinnersley, founder and headmaster of St. George’s School. He demonstrates that much of the man’s fearsome reputation comes from the least reliable sources of information about him, and is contradicted by more reliable testimony.

Sneyd-Kynnersley was born in 1848 of an aristocratic family like Churchill’s own. His father was a successful barrister. As a boy he did not attend any prep school himself, being privately tutored in the home of an Oxford-educated Scottish clergyman, the Ven. William Macdonald. He later married one of the Ven. MacDonald’s daughters.

At the age of 13, Sneyd-Kinnersley enrolled at Rugby, one of England’s most famous public schools. Unlike Churchill, he did quite well academically, winning a number of prizes. The headmaster of Rugby during his time there was the Rev. Frederick Temple, a future Archbishop of Canterbury. A biographer recounts of him:

Dr Temple hated flogging. There was very little of it in his day. When he did flog, he did, but there would not infrequently be tears in his eyes…. Mr Hart Davis writes: “…I was one of the Sixth Form boys on duty to see fair play. The Headmaster seemed to feel his position more acutely than the culprit. But in spite of the tears coursing down his cheeks, Temple inflicted on the boy a good sound licking”

Undoubtedly, those ‘good sound lickings’ were the original model for Sneyd-Kinnersley’s own.

He matriculated at Trinity College, Cambridge in July 1867, at the age of 19, reading for a Law degree. There was vehement conflict within the Church of England at this time, and Sneyd-Kinnersley was an active partisan of High Church Conservatism. Dutton notes that in 1868, he was

one of three Trinity undergraduates to put his name to what might seem to us like a rather obscure petition to the master of the college. But this was a formal petition; something relatively rare and noteworthy. It demanded that communion should be celebrated every Sunday, as well as on Ascension Day, before the usual service in the college chapel. It further insisted that communicants should receive communion kneeling at the altar rail. In the context of 1868, Sneyd-Kynnersley was espousing what might be called ‘radical conservatism.’

Upon graduating from Trinity in 1871, Sneyd-Kynnersley took the post of assistant master at St Michael’s School, Slough, where he remained for six years. In 1877 he and another assistant master at St. Michael’s School decided to establish their own institution. They advertised for it in the Saturday Review and the Pall Mall Gazette, describing it as

a ‘high class prep school’ which would be opening on 19th September for children aged between 8 and 15. The advertisement described the luxurious facilities, the system of individual cubicles, and how it aimed to prepare boys for major public schools—listing Eton, Harrow, Winchester, Rugby and Charterhouse—as well as for Naval College.

Tuition was expensive: £150 per year, all inclusive. The list of referees, in the advert, prepared to vouch for Sneyd-Kynnerseley was very impressive; a veritable roll call of the great and the good in the late 1870s. The school was initially called Sunninghill House, but in 1880 the name was changed to St George’s, Ascot. Churchill recalled that:

It was supposed to be the very last thing in schools. Only ten boys in a class; electric light (then a wonder); a swimming pond; spacious football and cricket grounds, two or three school treats, or ‘expeditions’ every term; the masters all M.A.’s in gowns and mortar boards; a chapel of its own; everything provided by the authorities.

The small school was composed of the headmaster and three assistant masters. The swimming pond was fed by a waterfall and there was a forest and a garden in which boys could grow their own vegetables. St. George’s gardener, George Richards, actually won awards for his horticultural skills. Beyond the garden was ‘the Wilderness’ in which, according to Aubrey Jay, the boys ‘used to spend many happy hours helping the Head construct rockeries, tunnels, grottoes and other fascinating things.’ The food was said to be excellent.

In politics, Sneyd-Kinnersley was strongly conservative, and he made no attempt to hide this from his pupils. Dutton writes:

The degree to which Sneyd-Kynnersley attempted to inculcate his pupils to support the Conservative Party is almost amusing. [Maurice] Baring remembers that on Guy Fawkes Night they would burn Liberal Prime Minister William Gladstone in effigy.

One day there was a parliamentary byelection in Ascot, so Sneyd-Kynnersley organised a school trip into town so that the boys — all wearing Tory rosettes — could campaign for the Conservative candidate. The 7 boys who had previously made it clear that they were Liberals had to stay behind and work! On another Bonfire Night, the pupils burnt Liberal politician Joseph Chamberlain (1836–1914) in effigy, because the Head regarded him as a radical.

Sneyd-Kinnersley’s floggings were, indeed, severe. One student recalls that they were ‘given with the master’s full strength and it took only two or three strokes for drops of blood to form everywhere and it continued for 15 or 20 strokes when the wretched boy’s bottom was a mass of blood.’ Around that time, birchings were giving way to canings, which drew less blood, but Sneyd-Kinnersley was decidedly ‘old school.’ His floggings were certainly within the law of the time, however, and there is no evidence that he sexually abused any of his students, which is more than can be said for some other Victorian schoolmasters.

Sneyd-Kynnersley was also fair and consistent in his discipline. He had ‘favourites,’ but when one of them did something for which other pupils would be flogged, he got flogged. Dutton comments:

It has been demonstrated empirically that children have a particularly strong sense of justice. Research has found that where corporal punishment, such as spanking, is the norm and children have transgressed the rules they often accept that they deserve the punishment and regard it as just. However, they find unjust punishment, or unjust absence of punishment, acutely intolerable.

Even as headmaster of St. George’s, Sneyd-Kinnersley continued his own education. He was ordained an Anglican priest in 1879 and made a Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1885: ‘This would have been awarded,’ writes Dutton, ‘upon the presentation of an acceptable portfolio of advanced research in English Law.’ He also published three educational books in the field of Classical languages: Greek Verbs for Beginners, A Parallel Syntax: Greek and Latin for Beginners, and Latin Prose Composition. In November 1886, only a couple years after Churchill was withdrawn from St. George’s, Sneyd-Kinnersley unexpectedly died of a heart attack at the age of 38. He left no children of his own.

Dutton, an anthropologist of religion, sees in Sneyd-Kinnersley’s High Church Toryism an important clue to his character. During their most vigorous historical phases, he writes,

societies are characterised by a form of religiousness which binds the society together and is highly ritualistic in nature. This form of religiousness promotes positive and negative ethnocentrism; these qualities themselves being central to societies which triumph over other societies. Ritual is, therefore, vital for such a society. Engaging in a religious ritual shows that whatever you might believe, you want to be part of the community; you are prepared to be in ‘communion’ with it. This is why, for example, Elizabeth I made clear that she had no interest in what people actually believed, so long as they attended Anglican communion on Sundays.

The Victorian evangelicals whom Sneyd-Kynnersley opposed stood in opposition to the Cult which was so central to the British Empire. They were latter-day Puritans, mainly middle-class people playing for social status through virtue-signaling behaviour such as not swearing, shunning alcohol, maintaining sexual constancy, dressing modestly, [and] expressing moral outrage when people deviated from this code.

Modern liberalism has managed to retain all the sanctimony of nineteenth-century liberalism while dispensing with its devotion to clean living. But then as now, liberal sanctimony was tied to

the political advocacy of equality: better prison conditions, fairer labour laws, extension of the voting franchise to working class men, the promotion of contraception, and the restriction of the influence of the Cult, with non-members being permitted to enter Oxford, Cambridge and Durham Universities by law as of 1871. This led to the usual arms race, with the result that by the end of the Victorian Era society was immensely puritanical. Evangelical influence had pushed the so-called ‘Overton Window’ — the range of opinions that are acceptable in public — further and further away from the traditions that were normal during the summer of civilization.

Sneyd-Kinnersley attempted to preserve civilization from degeneration by reviving earlier traditions, which he regarded as vital and which were already on the wane. At a time when schools were beginning to embrace science, Sneyd-Kynnersley wrote a number of books on how best to teach Latin and Ancient Greek. At a time when public schools were moving towards using the cane, Sneyd-Kynnersley used the birch. At a time when evangelicalism had strongly permeated society, Sneyd-Kynnersley’s religious services were firmly High Church, and his pupils—the potential future leaders of the country—were inculcated with a deep loathing for the Liberal Party, a party which pushed acceptable opinion ever-leftwards, further and further away from the opinions held when English civilization had borne fruit.

The public school system was supposed to turn ‘barbarous young men’ into responsible ‘gentlemen’—capable of running the Empire—through a system of pronounced but controlled violence and other forms of discipline. A high functioning psychopath, like Churchill, with little natural care for the feelings of others and a low desire to follow the rules, would have required a particularly harsh and constant regime in order to be ‘broken’ into an English gentleman. The headmaster got the balance slightly wrong, with incalculable consequences for the British Empire and its motherland.

Had Sneyd-Kynnersley’s birchings been slightly less severe, Dutton speculates, perhaps Churchill

could have been fully broken down; reducing his psychopathic tendencies to the minimum and likely sparing Britain World War II and all that has followed on from that. Never in the history of human civilization has so much rested on what one headmaster did or didn’t do to one boy’s arse.

27 replies
  1. Barkingmad
    Barkingmad says:

    Much discussion of physical punishment (birchings) here. The rationale for this was to undo the effects of a spoiled, over-comfortable upbringing, thereby producing great leaders. What ghastly nonsense. I’d suggest that the way to develop character, proper behavior, health, and good judgment would be to give these pampered, spoonfed boys useful, productive, rewarding, necessary physical labor, within their constitutional capacity in addition to their regular studies. Every day. It would work today and it would have worked then. Boys and girls were not designed to sit at a desk all day and then try to release pent up energy by playing silly sports. Sports are okay as far as it goes, but not enough.

    There may have been no evidence of sexual abuse but the reality is that there are nerves in the buttocks that lead to the sex organs. (Look it up, as they say.) Administer enough pain to the arse and you are headed for a population of sexually addled aristocratic toffs, the result of the mingling of pain and pleasure also to be found in the practice of early circumcision.

    • Pierre de Craon
      Pierre de Craon says:

      As usual, everything you write strikes a chord in me. I can’t quite resist the temptation, however, to think that almost any means would have been justifiable had they shown promise of leading to the reform of Winston’s evil and destructive nature.

      Sixty-plus years before the Reverend Sneyd-Kinnersley was born, the then young Robert Southey was expelled from the Westminster School for writing that the invention of flogging was attributable to the devil. As Southey, whatever his later poetic fame, was the son of a tradesman (to wit, a draper), the Rev. S-K would doubtless have regarded his views as infra dig.

      I wonder what S-K thought of Thomas Arnold, who died in 1842. The elder man was also famously indifferent to instructing young students in the sciences, but in religion he was anything but High Church. Indeed, Arnold was an ardent supporter of the very “reforms” that S-K deplored. In that same vein, I wonder too whether Professor Dutton’s book relates S-K to the Oxford Movement, even if only peripherally. Granted, there is certainly no suggestion in the review essay that S-K would have been interested in following Newman and the others who went to Rome!

      • Barkingmad
        Barkingmad says:

        Tks for your comments! Anyway, I am not sure that anything would have cured W.C. I think he was a bad seed, like most of those who “lead” us. Harsh methods only intensify their twisted minds. There’s no cure.

        Thanks for mentioning Southey; we don’t hear much about him, it seems. His heart was in the right place re flogging. How is it that people such as he might have been considered as similar to the progressives of today. The human species (western version) don’t seem to have any sense of proportion. If avoidance of flogging is good, then, for gosh sakes, transsexualizing of youngsters even better.

        • pterodactyl
          pterodactyl says:

          “If avoidance of flogging is good, then, for gosh sakes, transsexualizing of youngsters even better.”

          This is a good point. Those most keen on removing punishments (and they seek to remove ALL significant punishments) are the same type of teacher/education establishment types who also want to teach young children all about sex including ‘alternative lifestyles’ in schools, as you say. They are also the teacher type who tells us all the time how caring they are, and at the same time preside over schools where the removal of discipline under their watch causes high levels of bullying and disruption of education, which, when the bullying is physical, is far worse than anything physical that went on in those Victorian schools.

          So the motive of those who oppose punishments in schools is never the noble one they claim, of being caring for the children. They do not really care about the well-being of children, all they care about is changing the society so the old order is replaced by a new one, one in which their type runs our schools and other institutions in place of the previous type.

          A small proportion of children in a ‘caring’ modern Western school are FORCED to receive persistent punches to the face and kicks to the head once fallen, sometimes from two or more assailants at a time or gangs, and other similar persistent bullying that never occurred in the schools of 100 years ago, as 100 years ago if there was a fight it was boxing match, conducted with rules, and once one boy was defeated, the fight ended and the circle of boys around the combatants would be like referees and never tolerate kicks to the head after the loser had fallen. Obviously I cannot say the exact proportion of schools in which this was enforced, but in my opinion it was far more common in those times than today. Boys were allowed to have pocket knives and there were no stabbings like there are today leading to knives being banned.

          Compare this with fights in modern schools where there are no rules enforced and no ‘referees’. So a child in a modern ‘caring’ school cannot escape severe bullying and assault.

          Meanwhile in these strict boarding school a pupil did not even have to submit to a caning, but would be expelled if he did not. (Once again I have no knowledge about how this varied with age/school)

          Psychological bullying is different and has likely always gone in all times, with most teachers not empathetic enough to spot it or bother too much about it, and in my opinion the current lot of teachers today are much lower on the empathy scale than in times past, due to the way schools are run today on the basis of ‘caring for the bad ones’ and therefore putting their ‘needs’ first, and this approach tends to drive away the normal teachers and attract those who are more ‘mini-criminal friendly’.

  2. James O'Meara
    James O'Meara says:

    ” During their most vigorous historical phases, he writes,

    societies are characterised by a form of religiousness which binds the society together and is highly ritualistic in nature. This form of religiousness promotes positive and negative ethnocentrism; these qualities themselves being central to societies which triumph over other societies. Ritual is, therefore, vital for such a society. Engaging in a religious ritual shows that whatever you might believe, you want to be part of the community; you are prepared to be in ‘communion’ with it. This is why, for example, Elizabeth I made clear that she had no interest in what people actually believed, so long as they attended Anglican communion on Sundays.”

    I must admit that if you put it that way, one does feel some sympathy for the Puritan insistence that one actually BELIEVE something instead of being a whited sepulcher. I am reminded of Fred. Rolfe (aka Baron Corvo) who was a Catholic convert; his seminary mates recalled he had “the Protestant hatred of the lie” which struck them as odd, since they agreed he was “the biggest liar they had ever seen.”

    I must also point out that Israel Shahak observes that this kind of “orthopraxy” is characteristically Jewish; his Elizabeth I example is to say that a Orthodox Jew (as American’s confusingly refer to Traditional Jews) will stand at prayer with a Hasid because the Hasid says the prayers in Hebrew (while believing that they help YHVH impregnate the Shekinah) but not with a Reform Jew, who prays in English.

  3. Hadding
    Hadding says:

    “Had Sneyd-Kynnersley’s birchings been slightly less severe, Dutton speculates, perhaps Churchill ‘could have been fully broken down’….”

    This sentence is bizarre. I have listened to Dutton talk about Sneyd-Kinnersley, whom he clearly does not think was overly severe. Dutton emphasizes that the behavior had to be quite bad before that headmaster would administer a birching.

    In fact, Dutton says that Sneyd-Kinnersley’s discipline had a good effect on Churchill:

    “And it seems to me that, had he had more time with Churchill — Churchill was withdrawn from his school after two years — he would have succeeded in reducing Churchill’s narcissism to more manageable levels, because he was working! I mean the school reports from 1882 were appalling, and they simply get better, and better, and better, as this supposedly sadistic regime works.” (E. Dutton, Churchill’s Headmaster: An Inspiration Wronged By History)

  4. Onlooker
    Onlooker says:

    We really can do without heroes. We do need leaders, though. The question is how to temporarily authorize the latter without resorting to hero worship. The only answer that I know is to have the correct proportion of intelligent people in a population who know how to follow and to do so provisionally and without fickleness. Sadly, I fear that we have already suffered a slow decapitation in this regard. But the loss can be undone with effort. The problem is that king makers try to second guess what others will like and, thus, short circuit the process. If the king makers also have a bad eye, the whole polity is worse than blind in that, not only blind, they think they see.

    • Pierre de Craon
      Pierre de Craon says:

      I see what you mean, but I’d say the opposite. I think that we need heroes, genuine heroes in thought and action, whereas leaders we can do without—or more accurately, we don’t need to search for leaders because aspirants to the title thrust themselves upon us willy-nilly.

      That is to say, once those who are conventionally called leaders are given their true name, would-be rulers, it becomes plain that any good they may intend or do us is ancillary or incidental to their true aims and motivations.

      • Barkingmad
        Barkingmad says:

        Hi, Pierre. I am hoping that after the collapse of everything, we will enter an Age of Behaving Ourselves without leaders and certainly without asswhackings. We’ll just know how to be human – the hand of God at work, the only being who can restore us. I don’t know about you but I am having a hard time with this chaos.

        • Pierre de Craon
          Pierre de Craon says:

          Yes, dear friend, I am having a very hard time, too. It might be wise for us to fear for—or perhaps just fear—those who are taking all of this in stride.

          I told someone just days ago that I was oscillating between despair and disgust at the Establishment’s full-bore embrace of degeneracy in all its sordid manifestations. These words were prompted by hearing a local radio station’s “public-service” announcement that the entirety of this month of June would be dedicated to uplifting reminders of the glorious and inspirational aftermath of the Stonewall “rebellion”!

          What’s to come next, I wonder. Gramscian transposition of Independence Day to the fourth Monday in June, perhaps, with appropriate changes to the designated festivities? That would certainly solve one of this country’s most nagging problems: the midweek Fourth of July.
          I seldom look at online videos, and what I saw in the informative but shocking one you linked to confirms me in my inclination. The film that is being marketed looks to be pretty appalling all by itself, but what could possibly be said in defense of the people who induced the little boy to play the “transgender” role? We have it on very high authority that the retribution awaiting those who corrupt the young is such that they would be better off if a great millstone were fastened around their neck and they were drowned in the depths of the sea. I trust that that poor boy’s parents won’t escape their own eternity in hell either.

  5. Carolyn Yeager
    Carolyn Yeager says:

    This article is a disappointment from what it seemed to start out as. It turned into just one more example of ‘apologetics’ for Winston Churchill and Britain’s role in WWII.

    When I began reading it, I thought I would write a comment that said, “It’s about time you published something like this,” in a congratulatory style. But alas, I’m still waiting for an opportunity to write that comment.

    • Le Hunt
      Le Hunt says:

      Churchill was one of the most vile humans to ever infest the planet, a totally corrupt and degenerate psychopath.

  6. Pierre de Craon
    Pierre de Craon says:

    Is it possible that TOO has published a review written by Ed Dutton of Ed Dutton’s book? The smart money says “no way!” I have twenty bucks on Andrew Joyce to win, with a hedging ten on Tobias Langdon as a long shot.

    If the book under review is even a third as good as the excerpted paragraphs lead me to think, the guardians of the Churchill Reputation Crypt will surely have put out a contract on Dutton, his publisher, and their respective families. All concerned would be well advised to think twice before opening any brown-paper-covered parcels that arrive in the post.

    • Pierre de Craon
      Pierre de Craon says:

      Dear Dr. Joyce,

      Thank you for shedding light. I fully accept your denial of authorship responsibility, of course, and in future I shall take care to hedge any reference to a wager with “virtual” or a similar qualifier!

    • F. Roger Devlin
      F. Roger Devlin says:

      Just for the record, Ed Dutton and I are different people.
      Perhaps a case of “great minds thinking alike?”

      • Pierre de Craon
        Pierre de Craon says:

        Congratulations and thanks to Roger Devlin, revealed at last as the author of this review essay. And thanks to KM’s Moderator for the corrected byline.

      • Hadding
        Hadding says:

        I am sure that Dutton would not say that you and he think alike.

        You should try reading his book next time, before writing about it.

  7. J. Eric Smith
    J. Eric Smith says:

    What a bizarre piece of writing. The final line is absolutely indefensible, disgusting and confirms the not so quite whisperings about the upper crust British and my suspicions of some sick perversion. William lll and Calvinism seem to be possible suspects in the rise of this malformed culture. Again, just sickening. This whole culture should be exposed for what it truly is though I’m not sure exactly WHAT it is. But we should figure it out as it seems to have caused much evil to befall our world.

  8. Edward Harris
    Edward Harris says:

    JJ was a a satanist who tortured children to death. W’s biological father was George Smith, a gardener. Hence W S in 1984.
    Jack ,fathered by Ld R, is obviously W’s half brother, that is why he was kept out of sight.
    JJ and Ld R were married in Parizfranz because no one would attend the wedding in the UK.
    W has at least one mulatto grandchild through his daughter S. She lived with a negro in the Windies.

  9. RonaldB
    RonaldB says:

    It’s kind of surprising that Dutton expresses the opinion here that actions by Sneyd-Kinnersley would affect a functioning psychopath to be less psychopathic. Dutton himself does much work on the heritability of traits, although character traits such as agreeableness and psychopathy are less heritable than intelligence.

    Churchill seems to have many of the traits Dutton and Charlton describe as being affiliated with genius: low agreeableness, high intelligence, unwillingness to focus on anything which doesn’t interest them, very low concern with the opinion or well-being of others. Churchill’s disorganization is a counter-feature, but may have manifest itself mainly in areas in which Churchill had no interest. In other words, Churchill did brilliantly when he was interested, but came across as lazy and disorganized when he was not. Churchill was extremely intelligent, but probably not intelligent enough to become an epoch-changing genius. But, and here is the point, a position of political leadership was decidedly not a good fit for him. It is fanciful to imagine more, or fewer, or less severe or whatever, beatings would have changed his basic personality structure.

    The fact that Churchill washed out of St. Georges might, in a more rigidly conservative society, have made him ineligible for political leadership of a traditional British government, which is probably the best disposition by far that could have happened. In this respect, Sneyd-Kinnersley seems right on the mark in opposing what we would see as a loosening of cultural bindings often associated with liberalism.

    • F. Roger Devlin
      F. Roger Devlin says:

      Dutton writes on p. 192 of this book: “intelligence is about 80% genetic in adults and personality may be as much as 70% genetic, so there is space, though not a large space, for environmental factors to make a difference.”

  10. John Ford
    John Ford says:

    Having been a pupil at one of these institutions – I can say from first hand experience that the majority of pupils do not come from excessively luxurious backgrounds. There are a minority with wealth beyond the comprehension of the average man – but – that does not mean they are over-comfortable or spoiled. Many times – their parents worked extremely hard to achieve their privileged status & the cost of such productive output – is often family life & comfort itself!

    There are of course – some spoiled children – but – for the most part – to survive these schools – you have to work sufficiently hard to maintain your place or they ask you to leave. Please also bear in mind that the selection process is rigorous & most of the children who do go to these institutions – are in the top 1% of children in the country. They are from successful backgrounds & successful lineage – hence why they are in the top 1%. They are born with genetic potential and are fortunate enough to have the opportunities to express this potential. These institutions guide you according to your potential. Some go on to lead the country – most do not go on to lead the country. Nonetheless – they are a net benefit to the progress of society. We all want more intelligent people running the world.

    As for Churchill, he was the son of a very successful man. This is a heavy burden for any son. Upon whom much is given – much is expected. Some are able to shoulder the pressure – some are not able to shoulder the pressure. It is easier to come from nothing – because – you have nothing to lose – but – to be successful – you have to have a degree of sociopathy. I do not think corporal punishment from his headmaster would have inspired his perceived psychopathy. He may have had psychopathic tendencies but he was simply an Englishman of his time – of his status – of his lineage. His actions were designed to send a message. Some good & some bad. Just like any other person acting during times of conflict. He just managed to win the war & orchestrate the subsequent narrative in his favour. If he had lost the war – the narrative would have been the inverse – with the same hyberbole – if not more.

  11. pterodactyl
    pterodactyl says:

    The British people have convinced themselves that they were complete heroes in the War and the ‘goodies’, faultless, saintly even, sacrificing so much ‘for freedom’ and ‘to fight evil’ and they firmly believe these were the reasons we went to War.

    This state of affairs came about as the Allies’ side comprised races that, due to their genes, attach importance to moral values, so if they join in a War, they have to justify it morally at the time. Their rulers knew this and so provided a set of short phrases (lies) about the War to prove we were on the goodies’ side, and the people were very eager to accept them during and after the War, so that they could cling to the notion that it was a noble War, and worthwhile – good versus evil.

    The reason the good versus evil narrative for the War can be maintained with such a high level of diligence, even to the extent of justifying burning civilians (‘gassing’ is evil, burning civilians in Dresden is justified) and justifying helping communism to expand, the reason such actions can be justified and presented as arising from virtue, the reason is that THE LEFT APPROVES and endorses them, and it is the left who set the agenda through their control of the media.

    The people in Britain were and still are very willing to accept the left’s version of the War as one of good versus evil, so that they do not have to admit that the War was a huge mistake. Proof that the British people approved of the War at the time is that just before the War, the anti-War Oswald Mosley became very unpopular, and after the War he was completely rejected in election votes, and in another vote for some university post.

    The outcome of the War was to kill off their best men, thus lowering the gene pool, make us all have fewer relatives today, ruin the economy, create a generation of widows, get their heritage bombed, and help communism expand. Being on the wrong side in a War and destroying your own country in the process are difficult things to admit, and being virtuous is a preferable analysis. So the people of Britain readily accepted the version the elites gave them and they continue to believe it sincerely.

    It is clear why the elites push this agenda, as it enables them to vilify white people who seek self-interest (Germans). It is also clear why the Jews love this agenda, as it vilifies white people and also makes the Jews the victims and gives them the stick of the holocaust to beat us all with forevermore.

    It is also clear why the patriots love the narrative, as it enables them to honour their dead soldiers and to believe that they died for something noble and worthwhile, and not just so that their psychopathic War leader, Churchill, can win his games of solders. They would not like to admit that they were just switched into ‘war mode’ and this caused them to foolishly cause so much destruction to their own country and others.

    So there is an alliance of several groups who all have an interest in keeping the narrative of ‘good verses evil’ for the war:

    1) The left use it to vilify those white people who defend white interests.
    2) The Jews use it to keep the H industry going and ‘1’ above
    3) The patriots like it to make themselves feel the sacrifice was a noble one and worthwhile, rather than admit that they fought on the wrong side.

    Note that the reluctance to admit error does not in itself prevent the War from being reassessed, as in other areas the white people are prepared (willing even) to self-flagellate and self-berate (unlike all other races, including Russians, none of whom self-flagellate and none of the others are capable of gong into self-hate mode). It is just a question of the elites choosing for the people which events they should regret and be guilty about, and which they should be proud of, and the people comply with the elite’s wishes.

    The elites have decreed:

    – be guilty about colonialism
    – be guilty about slavery
    – be guilty about being rich
    but also
    – be proud that you fought a cousin-cousin war to defeat other whites (Germans) for being ‘white supremacists’.

    All the above in the list are the narratives that the elite chooses for the people, and the people accept them all.

    The very idea that the white race is superior is the trigger for the left that drives everything the left does, and everything they do can be explained in terms of their deep rooted and never-changing and never-ending hostility towards the superior. This is the basis for ALL their thinking, much more significant than money or power as a motive. Evidence for this is that even the word ‘superior’ is now a derogatory term, and to suggest that white people are superior will immediately ruin a carer or get you sacked in any mainstream job or position in the West.

    Churchill was an unusual combination – a true patriot, an intellectual, not a lefty or a communist sympathiser, and such types do not normally want to lead their own country to disaster, but in his case he also had the character flaw of being a sociopath who did not care what price his people paid for him to win at soldiers. So he could rally the patriots and get them to follow him and they recognised that he genuinely loved his country and wanted it to be a winner, but what they dd not realise is that he was willing to destroy his own country in the process of ‘winning’.

    The behaviour of Churchill in the Boer War shows a lack of stress in danger and war, and this is how he was able to take his country to war (and destroy it) just in order to win his games of soldiers – no cost was too great for him and I doubt he ever lost sleep over soldier deaths. A few circumstances came together – he was genuinely patriotic and could attract the loyalty of patriots, and his aims (of winning at soldiers) coincided with globalist elites’ aims of a cousin-cousin War to help the Soviets and destroy superior white people, so they happily formed an alliance. So the patriots and the enemy-within left became allies regarding the War.

    So the left & Jews permit/tell the people to self-congratulate over WWII as being a War to ‘defeat evil whites’ and tell them to also self-hate over colonialism and slavery, and the people comply, duly feeling guilty about colonialism and feeling proud of their war against whites who sought white interests. This begs the question: if we had a patriotic media that was on our side and not run by the enemy-within, would we now have an alternative scenario in which the people would be self-congratulating over colonialism and regretting WWII just as much as they regret WWI?

    But a word of defence for sociopaths being used as military leaders – which types does a military nation promote to lead its men? Sensitive types or those who in WWI can send 20,000 men to their deaths, then sleep soundly that night and the next day order another 20,000 over the top? It was society as a whole promoting ‘military winners’ to be our military leaders. We were happy for the sociopaths to lead us – in fact we chose them and promoted them. Remember that WWI trenches Christmas football match – if there were just 10% fewer sociopaths in the top positions, WWI perhaps could have ended at that point. The NATURAL way for wars to end in previous centuries was for one side to back down (and stay intact) and pay a penalty, with all ranks mingling closely with each other on the battlefield, but when War became large scale, the option to ‘run away’ ended, due to the sheer scale of the exercise, and the option of the men to ‘send feedback’ up the ranks that they had had enough, this ended, as the leader was not even on the battlefield.

    In the future when civil conflict becomes widespread in the West, and ‘racism’/white interest starts to become respectable again, people will reassess whether the Germans were the villains after all.

  12. alan
    alan says:

    Me thinks ‘hindsight historians’ give too much credit to ‘Winnie’ for manufacturing war with Germany. Granted, Hitler was trying to release Germany, as well as Europe, from the satanic clutches of the jew money machine, the Synagogue of Satan, but not even Churchill, as flawed and corrupt as he was, could have persuaded all of parliament and the crown to go along with his war appetite. Churchill was on the payroll of The Focus, and he would do, for the rest of his natural life, what The Focus paid him to do. Why, then, did all of parliament and the crown go along with this insanity and suicide we now refer to as WW2? Are there any, today, that believe that parliament, the crown, congress, the courts, The White House and all other arenas of bribed governance is not under the direct obedience, persuasion and servitude of the jew manufactured fiat currency of Europe and the Americas? Who among you believe that the decadence of the past couple of centuries has happened just because the non-jew populace has become so distorted and perverted that it is actually embracing and accepting of the jew mind and culture? Never forget this quote from Nathan Rothschild (Red Shield): “I care not who writes the laws as long as I control the money”. The Focus (jew money cabal) cared not for the laws of ‘merry ole’ England’, as long as they were in control of the cash flow. Winston demonstrated that ‘truth’ without wavering. He was willingly corruptible, but a stern and no-nonsense ‘head master’ didn’t make him that way. For ‘Winnie’ it was all about the money.

  13. Charles Frey
    Charles Frey says:

    Who, but the most abject inmate in an asylum would SIMULTANEOUSLY oversee OPRATION KEELHAUL and OPERATION UNTHINKABLE ???

    The first to placate Stalin by forcibly repatriating half of his escaped opponents [ ca. 2.5 million of a total 5 million ]; the second to wipe Stalin out: augmenting Allied troops by using 100,000 ex-Wehrmacht personnel yet, who thought that to be their job-description in the first place.

    Have a good look at Churchill’s photograph at the top of Irving’s Action Report !!! Would you buy a used car from a salesman with those eyes ???

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