Crap phrases and sayings, No 1: We’re all in this together

we're all in this together
We’re all in this together. Of course we are, David.

Before 2010, if someone had ever told me that we were all in this together, I would have assumed he/she was referring to a challenge or issue that 1) affected ‘all of us’, whether that was society as a whole or just the members of a defined group of people, and that 2) those people would share both the sacrifices and rewards of overcoming that challenge.

Inherent in the sentence’s internal logic appears to be a sense of fairness; a reassuring notion that all our interests, welfare and aspirations – collectively and individually – will be balanced and melded into a glorious whole as we courageously strive for a brave new world for the common good; that, somehow, we all matter.


Fluffy white bunny rabbits

However, the experience of the last three years would suggest that this happy thought process is, in fact, complete bollocks; that the words as arranged in this sentence have a much darker and more complex meaning, at variance with any sense of equity; and that only a naïve fool, someone without self respect, powers of reasoning or, indeed, any functioning critical faculties at all could believe in such a thing.

No, believing that this sentence has anything whatsoever to do with the promotion of natural justice is akin to existing in a world of fluffy white bunny rabbits.

So, given the confusion that the continued use of this phrase by certain high-profile members of our society is causing, I would like to propose that it be deleted from common English usage henceforth, so that those sad, deluded people among us who believe we really are “in ‘it’ together” can be awoken from their trance and once again take their rightful place among the ranks of humanity.



Peter a journalist with 30 years experience of freelance writing, UK national newspaper and magazine production roles, and business development. In 2007, he developed and launched a mainstream-style green consumer magazine in the UK, called GreenerLiving, as a means of promoting sustainable change ‘within the system’. GreenerLiving closed during the post-crash recession, but Peter went on to become managing editor of the international ethical business title, Ethical Performance. However, Peter felt that the CSR sector has not succeeded in changing corporate priorities anywhere near fast enough, and so I decided to leave the treadmill of corporate employment and debt accumulation to focus on my own projects. Now poorer but a billion million times happier, he writes on political, economic and social issues – usually seriously, but sometimes as satire. He's currently writing Psychopath Economics, a book about the logic of social and economic power, belief systems, and the rise and fall of societies. Peter is convinced that ordinary people must educate themselves and exercise their economic leverage if we are to avoid social and environmental destruction.

peterbatt has 165 posts and counting.See all posts by peterbatt

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