This follows Will Yong's respond to my "BBC" post yesterday, specifically in reference to the press in the UK:
I have yet to find a left-wing paper in the UK. The Guardian is a joke, strident with spelling errors and condescending editorials and made for apathetic "bo-bo" (that stands for BOurgeois-Boheme in French referring to rich people with a pity for left wing cause).
The definition of what constitutes the "Left" necessitate clear definition. My standard of what is left and what is right is pretty much the general consensus in France, which I know is not the standard definition. There isn't one as far as I know. Having travelled around a fair bit, I think the French's Gauche (left) is the more rational of whilst still maintaining certain hard-core values of what is Left.
Upon the use of this definition, the New Labour is far from being "left", it is left as in the "gauche" (which in French can also mean "clumsy" and in Italian, I believe it can mean "sinister").
Historical reasons made it impossible for French style socialism/left politics to be fostered in the UK. The British sense of pragmatism, common-sense, and pride over winning the great wars do not render the task easy to convince people that there is actually a better way of governing in the world than their current system of survival of the richest.
Furthermore, both France and England (I avoid dragging the Welsh and Scots in this) have always defined themselves by the opposing whatever the other is doing. You removed your monarchy, we will maintain ours even though it is costing us millions of pounds; you use metric, we use imperial; you propose Euro, we try our best to annoy you by not joining; you propose the EU constitution, we chose to annoy you by not ratifying it; etc etc.
However, one cannot exist without the other, as how the English define England will only make sense if France was there. And this form of banter between FR and ENG actually provides a check for each other to move forward and progress. I think they need each other more than they care to admit. Comme dit Gainsbourg, je t'aime, moi non plus. The elegance of this short phrase summarises well the relationship between FR and ENG, I think.
So, I personally feel that it is almost impossible to establish a more humanistic approach of governing in the UK, if humanism is defined à la française.