In the words of a comment on an earlier post: "A lot of pieces in print and online saying that Hitch had no obvious successor. But he wouldn't have had, would he? There is a generational shift in play. People who were never Tankies or Trots in the aftermath of 1968 can never be neocons in middle age. The next wave is Red Tory/Blue Labour/Crunchy Con."
It is we who are the patriotic, morally and socially conservative, anti-Communist Left, who are the true heirs of the best of George Orwell. Orwell is good. He is important. But he is still overrated. Not least, his depiction of Wigan is still resented in the town to this day. His famous remark about the goosestep was just plain wrong, like many of his others.
However, Orwell's patriotism, his moral and social conservatism, and his anti-Communism are vitally important in reminding the British Left that those are indispensable, and indeed definitive, aspects of our own tradition. All three, though perhaps especially the last, make him a particularly significant figure when set alongside Christopher Hill and E P Thompson in rescuing demotic culture from what Thompson called "the enormous condescension of posterity", even though Orwell himself was not above condescension.