[James C.] Bennett calls the English-speaking network civilisation "the Anglosphere". […] Its academic foundations are rooted in work demonstrating that England always had a more individualist culture than continental Europe, that the "civil society" tools of this culture were transmitted to the colonies settled from England, and that those countries have since not only prospered unusually, but also established a world civilisation rooted in liberalism. Bennett in The Anglosphere Challenge makes unmistakably clear that it is English cultural traits – individualism, rule of law, honouring contracts, and the elevation of freedom – rather than English genes that explain this success. […]
That raises a painful question. If Australians, Indians, Canadians, and even Americans can recognise the Anglosphere as a new factor in world politics, why is it something from which the Brits themselves shy? To the best of my knowledge, the only politician to have embraced the idea is Lord Crickhowell, formerly David Howell, who held several ministries under Margaret Thatcher and who, from his City experience, knows that Britain's prosperity lies with the growing markets of Asia and North America.
Our fading Anglosphere ties give us an advantage over Europeans and other competitors there. If we were to pursue a deliberate strategy of strengthening such ties, we would discover a better "grand strategy" than the present muddled shuttling back and forth between Washington and Brussels, feeling a "poodle" to both.
Is our reluctance because we fear to touch anything that smacks of the empire? […] Are we nervous that anything "English-speaking" might be thought incompatible with multiculturalism? Well, the first multicultural identity was the British one; today the Anglosphere spans every continent.
Is it politically dangerous as an alternative to Europe? That would only be true insofar as "Europe" failed to meet our needs – in which case we would need an alternative.
Or is it, as I suspect, that the Anglosphere offers us the prospect of national adventure that in our cultural funk we find too exciting – preferring to go back to the sleep of the subsidised?