The Guardian's Tim Dowling looks at Blair's speech saying this is a blessed country and comes up with a load of reasons why 'tis so.
American-born writer Tim Dowling on what makes Britain great | The Guardian | Guardian Unlimited
Some hit the nail right on the head, to whit:
Your amusing national hypochondria
Despite its comparative cosiness, Britain has an unshakable view of itself as a nation that is forever falling to pieces. If you watch the television you see a crumbling health service, falling educational standards, rampant gun crime, infrastructural chaos, economic meltdown and a fractured civilisation well beyond repair. Look out the window, and you see someone throwing a stick for a dog. This might not seem like such a great advertisement for a country, unless you have lived some place where it's the other way round.
Lovely to have the opportunity to write 'to whit' again...