As far as I can see no one seems to be pointing out the essential cause of all these riots. Rioting is fun, exciting and you get to pick a prize at the end. Even young bloods at Oxford have been known to smash stuff up for the hell of it. It relieves the tedium of it all.
Talking about “the” essential cause is silly. I can think of about a dozen “essential causes” of these riots, as could you, each as “essential” as each other (this being one reason why there have been so many recent postings here on the subject (this being the ninth consecutive one)). Causes do not work alone; they combine, in clusters. For “the” read “an”. “The” Englishman, as he signs himself at the bottom of each posting (is there only one of those?), himself immediately proceeds to add some more “essential causes” of the rioting, like the fact that the penalties for rioting are now too small, along with the fun of it being fun.
Another essential cause of the rioting is that the rioters don’t think that rioting is wrong. They are, in short, scum. Why are they scum? Partly because so many of them have no live-in dads, which is another essential cause of all this.
Another essential cause of the rioting is, as was much discussed by me and the commenters here, that we, the non-rioting classes, are severely discouraged by our rulers from defending ourselves and counter-attacking against the rioters, which is one of many reasons why rioters now face too few penalties for their rioting. (Such defending and counter-attacking might also be fun. Different posting.)
Another cause of the rioting is that the rioters are stuck in a welfare trap. They are paid and consequently trained to do nothing, and have become incapable of doing anything more honestly lucrative. The Englishman alludes to all this by quoting at some length from a piece in the Guardian by Zoe Williams. Her description of what it’s like being stuck in a welfare trap is quite a good one, and should not be dismissed as mere “guff”, as the Englishman dismisses it, merely because Zoe Williams’s opinion about welfare is (I presume) that there should be more of it, and hence that more should be sucked into welfare traps. She describes the problem well.
Nevertheless, the Englishman has a good, big point here. Rioting is fun. This is not the only or “the essential” cause of the rioting, but it is definitely one of the causes of it.