Conchita Farage - just think of the potential
The people have spoken.
Eurovision victory is awarded not to the best song, but to the symbolic embodiment of a quest for personal liberty and identity difference.
So much of the ordinary life is surrounded by prohibitions and obligations which impose a stifling conformity on human society. We live by social rules, where the norms of social interchange are marked by the aspiration to certain objectives, such as equality without regard to rank or sex, autonomy of individuals, solidarity. The goodness and wisdom of God are shown in the interlocking order, and our disengaged reason as our way of participating in God's purpose.
But this picture of disengaged reason is linked to the conception of human dignity. In particular, it incorporates a sense of self-responsible autonomy, a freedom from the demands of authority. There is rebellion against the institutions of state, the patriarchal family and community commitment. The stress is on expressions of individuation against the demands of ascriptive authority.
As with Eurovision, so it is with our fragmented culture, relative morality, and our increasingly atomised politics. We are moving to the prizing of autonomy above all; to the primacy of self-exploration and the exaltation of self-expression, in particular of feeling. In our political language, we rail against disciplinary structures and reject the established orders in favour alternative formulations and expressions. Nigel Farage may be a loathsome opportunist and hypocrite, but he is one of modernity's epoch-making political philosophers, railing against the entrenched natural order and traditional conceptions of the common good.
It is not that Nigel Farage necessarily does philosophy; it is simply that he has one while the unsatisfactory others do not. He expresses a vision, while the others flail about and perish. Like Conchita Wurst, Nigel Farage stands for personal liberty and a different identity, and, for the moment, the people seem to like that.
Imagine Ukip led by a bearded singing transvestite.