Ugly Competition 103

My detestation of the urban sub-culture which spawned the recent crime wave is longstanding. It is ugly, self-centred, materialistic and vicious, and in large part imported from the United States. Those who disliked my views on the looting, if surprised have not been paying attention in the past.

But the House of Commons debate is managing to look like a manifestation of a still uglier sub-culture. Fat-jowled smug men who look like that caricature of the yeomanry at Peterloo, and shrill unpleasant lean-faced women.

So far they want the revocation of the human rights act, powers to close down Twitter, censorship on the internet, tax allowances for married couples (sic), and have suggested that the killing of Ian Tomlinson was a good example to follow.

By comparison Cameron is coming over as almost sane. But he himself has said that convicted looters should lose their social housing. This is crazed populism. I am in favour of custodial sentences for looters. But the custodial sentence should be aimed at better equipping for participation in society. How on earth can you achieve rehabilitation if you deliberately force homelessness? Putting criminals homeless on the streets will reduce crime? Does anyone really believe that?

Presumably he does not intend to throw family dependants on the street too, or does he?

103 thoughts on “Ugly Competition

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  • John Goss

    Thanks Bridget, Mary, MJ et al for opening the PC Yvonne Fletcher debate again. Just how many are there of these dubious killings?

  • writeon

    Whilst I’m not particularly enamoured with certain aspects of US, black, urban ‘culture’ or behaviour… it is, I would contend, a perfectly rational and normal response to the economic and social context the ‘underclass’ find themselves mired in.

    It’s also clear that if one ‘imports’ the same, or similar, economic dogmas from the US and imposes them on the UK, not surprisingly, the results will be remarkably similar, as are the ‘cultural’ expressions.

    For example, longterm unemployment has a massively negative effect on the family unit. It undermines the social structure of entire communities and classes. What replaces, what functions as the ‘economy’ when employment vanishes? Illegal drugs become a substitute and alternative to the real economy, and a logical career alternative for many, many, people. When people are structurally excluded from the normal and legal economy, for a variety of reasons, they ‘naturally’ attempt to create an alternative economy and crime becomes an integral part of the culture of the underclass. What, after all, are the disposssed and disenfranchised supposed to do?

    There’s also the concept of ‘respect’ which is central to gang culture and the conflicts over ‘territory’ and minor infringements of rival gangs. One can argue that the obsession with ‘respect’ is a direct response to the ‘disrespect’ that society leaps on the underclass.

  • Cide Hamete Benengeli

    @John Goss
    I don’t know about all the statements in that video, but the basic facts are not in dispute. The topic is related to Craig’s recent post on reserve currencies. Robert Newman has a brilliant account in his History of Oil (just google) where he calls it the Magic Cheque Book.

  • John Goss

    Cide Hamete Benengeli. Thanks for that. I know it’s off topic, and I apologise.

    On the BBC News Channel I just caught the end of an item, not repeated on the 10 o’clock news. If I understood correctly,it appears that a special fund has been set up for victims of vandalism in the riots. It amounts to £1 million. What surprises me, if I understood correctly, is that people affected need to apply to the police. I find that incredible! What does it mean? Do they ask how content victims of vandalism were with police actions in determining who is eligible? And to what extent? I realise application forms will not be quite phrased like that, but I wouldn’t mind seeing one. Why is this fund being administered by the police?

  • mary

    Question Time special tonight at 10.30 for an hour. BBC1
    David Davis, Archbishop of York, Prescott, Paddick, Camila Batmanthingy and Frazer Nelson
    Great enlightenment will flow. NOT

  • mary

    John Some ancient Riot Act provides for compensation from the Police who have a special fund I heard. We have such an closed society that nobody knows any detail. I wanted to know what extra powers Cameron has given to the police today and cannot find out. I had heard that they can now demand that someone uncovers their face. Can the law be changed by a Prime Minister without Parliament voting? All we have are questions and no answers.

  • John Goss

    Another off topic. Skip if you’re not interested.
    If I ever get a broadcasting job in the United States I’m going to send a letter from America about the amazing batting performance of Alastair Cook – only eighteen short of a double century in an outstanding performance at the new Edgbaston Stadium. Sorry, my Indian friends, and I know it’s not over till the fat lady sings. But “Summer time, and the living is easy . . .”

  • John Goss

    Mary. That’s interesting. If you find out anything more can you let us know please? My stepson had his moped stolen recently, saw it in the street, locked it with a bike-lock, and called the police. They confiscated it and put it into storage and I had to pay £170 to recover it. Where are the funds to compensate me for that?
    These riot funds, new laws (masks) without a mandate from parliament, a telephone-tapping station without parliamentary sanction! What kind of a democracy do we live in?

  • John Goss

    Thanks. And did you notice, Mary, that insurance companies under this act are able to claim too? What left for individuals?
    Give them more money Mabel! Come on, you can’t remember that! Unfortunately I can.

  • Joe

    Craig, let your conspiratorial mind loose for a moment and consider that, if these riots end up ushering in the revocation of the human rights act, powers to close down Twitter, censorship on the internet and a consensus that the killing of Ian Tomlinson was a good example to follow, maybe, just maybe it was all by design (at some level)?

  • John Goss

    Wilfred Pickles:
    “Give them the money, Barney”.
    “Lay it on the table, Mabel”.

    I digress

  • Jaded.

    So where would we be without a good bit of internet censorship to help us pass the tiWhat a complete load of rubbish!me then? They are going to knock out SMS’s too are they?
    Mod Jon, can I please have access to the mod gun? I really want to play with it and I promise i’ll only use it on Lamby and his alter ego Stupid. It will be for his own good I assure you. Zap!

  • John Goss

    Getting back to the serious issues, there is no government by consensus or by referendum, or by public opinion, if there ever has been. Tony Blair proved that. Major and Thatcher before him. We were never asked if we wanted our money spent on futile and puerile wars. We never are. It is time to ask people.
    One of the great things about AVAAZ, and similar sites, is they put the willies up politicians. They don’t want our opinions to disagree with their own, but if they do, significantly, it worries them. We need to keep the pressure on.

  • OldMark

    ‘But these riots or putting it in more simple words looting and arsons have been mostly done by those petty criminals who were and in large are still free instead of being placed to jail. ‘

    Spot on Uzbek in the UK.

    This is also, of course,(Yugo/Larry please note) one of the reasons why riots on the scale seen in England this week haven’t occurred in the US recently. Here the prison population is around 80,000- in the US it is close to 2 million.

    A multicultural, multiracial state can in the end only function if state authorities have, and at times apply, repressive powers, be it thru armed police, high rates of incarceration or (in the case of India) strict censorship (as in the banning of Rushdie’s Satanic Verses). In relatively monoracial/monocultural states,such as Iceland & Japan, you get ‘policing by consent’ low rates of incarceration, and relatively little censorship.

    Take your pick.

  • Methuselah Now


    Here’s some mirrors:

    Libya regime: UK premier must go

    The Libyan regime of Muammar Gaddafi has called on British Prime Minister David Cameron to step down, saying he has “lost all legitimacy.”

    Libya’s Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled Kaaim said, “Cameron and his government must leave after the popular uprising against them and the violent repression of peaceful demonstrations by police.”

    “Cameron and his government have lost all legitimacy. These demonstrations show that the British people reject this government which is trying to impose itself through force,” he added.

    Kaaim asked the UN Security Council and the international community not to stay with their “arms crossed” in the face of the flagrant violation of the rights of the British people.

    Cameron announced that a “fight back is under way” and that he would not let “phony concerns about human rights get in the way” of silencing the protesters.

    He has ordered the British police to deploy 16,000 officers in London streets and authorized them to use rubber bullets and water cannon in order to regain the control of the crisis-hit cities across the country.

    “Whatever resources the police need, they will get. Whatever tactics the police feel they need to employ, they will have legal backing to do so,” Cameron stated.

    “We will do whatever is necessary to restore law and order on our streets. Every contingency is being looked at. Nothing is off the table,” he also said.


    UK PM: Human rights concerns “phoney”

    British Prime Minister, David Cameron, has authorised the use of rubber bullets and water cannon by the Metropolitan Police to suppress the widespread protests.

    As the fourth night of angry protests shook the northwestern cities of Manchester and Liverpool, as well as Nottingham, Birmingham, West Bromwich, and Wolverhapton, Cameron announced “a fight back is under way” and “phoney” human rights issues cannot prevent the British government from silencing the angry protesters.

    Cameron lectured the Chinese authorities, in November 2010, on the importance of human rights and claimed that the British government raises the human rights issues “because the British people expect us to and because we have sincere and deeply-held concerns.”

    Within just months from his lecture, Cameron describes concerns about human rights “phoney” as he orders the British police to deploy 16,000 officers only in London streets authrosing them to use rubber bullets and water cannon.

    Britain has a bad track record on using rubber bullets against unarmed civilians which has created great concerns among human rights activists and organizations. Numerous groups, from European Parliament to Human Rights Watch, have called for a ban on rubber bullets.

    These bullets are supposed to be shot at lower parts of the body; however there is evidence that about 19 people have been killed in Northern Ireland mostly because of rubber bullet injuries to their heads.

    Moreover, the Independent Police Complaints Commission’s revelation that no evidence of a handgun was found at the scene where Mark Duggan, the 29-year-old black, was shot by armed police officers was another setback in Britain’s efforts to pose as a supporter of human rights.

    All these come as Britain tries to present itself to the international community as a human rights defender taking the lead on setting a no fly zone on Libya or pushing for sanctions against Syria to end what it calls crackdown on protesters.


    Syria Accuses Cameron Of Hypocrisy Over Riots

    The country’s envoy Bashar Ja’afari spoke out after months of condemnation of Syria’s regime over the crushing of its own domestic uprising.

    He said: “To hear the Prime Minister of England describing the riots and the rioters in England by using the term ‘gangs’, while they don’t allow us to use the same term for the armed groups and the terrorist groups in my country – this is hypocrisy. This is arrogance.”

    Britain’s deputy UN ambassador described the comment as “absurd”. Officials at the Foreign Office in London told Sky News they were not going to dignify the comments with a response.

    Kind regards,


  • mary

    Crikey John. You must be old as me?
    This brought a smile. A timely reminder of the Bullingdon boys, rich boys looting and pillaging but OK yah, because Daddy was there to pay up for the damage, and another piece about Cleggover’s school days.
    Clegg was educated at two independent schools: at Caldicott School in Farnham Royal in South Buckinghamshire, and later at Westminster School in Central London. As a 16-year-old exchange student in Munich, he and a friend drunkenly set fire to what he called “the leading collection of cacti in Germany”. When news of the incident was reported during his time as Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman, Clegg said he had behaved “appallingly, irresponsibly, criminally”[15] and that he was “not proud” of it.He was not formally charged, but performed a kind of community service.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    “In relatively monoracial/monocultural states,such as Iceland & Japan, you get ‘policing by consent’ low rates of incarceration, and relatively little censorship.

    Take your pick.” Old Mark.
    So, what’s your answer, Old Mark? Do you believe in the ‘repatriation’ of all coloured people and all non-Christian people? Or do you just want to put all of these people in jail?
    Or do you prefer the politics of Yukio Mishima, perhaps?
    I really would prefer that you were open and frank. Instead of banging the same old drum, again and again and again.
    ‘Iceland and Japan’ – nothing to do with more egalitarian societies, a fairer distribution of wealth, I suppose? Sweden and Norway too. Ah! But the ‘caped crusader’ went and messed-up Norway, didn’t he? Ah! This proves it must be the fault of coloured people in Europe. Yes! Here we go again: ‘Kick out the darkies!’ Colin Jordan was much more intellectually honest.
    If you’re so unhappy in Britain, Why don’t you go and live in Iceland or Japan, then? Oh, but then you’d be the ‘invader’, and there would be lots more crime and riots because of you, Old Mark. Yes, what logic! What intellect!

    You, Old Mark, constantly advocate the key ideologies and distortions of the Far Right, in which everything is distilled down to a single issue – race (oh, and its new sibling, religion, which in your contextual framework is simply a cipher for race) – and attempt to propagandise on the basis of this severely flawed rubric.
    This seems to be your major function on this website.

  • mary

    Methusalah Now The Palestinians and some foreigners who visit there are expert witnesses on the effect of being shot by rubber bullets. It has been death on many occasions and other times permanent brain damage.

  • Andy

    ”urban sub-culture which spawned the recent crime wave”.
    What is this ”urban sub-culture”? Couldn’t the ‘Westminster Village’ that journos inhabit also be called an ”urban sub-culture”?
    Even Parliament it’s self. Or the Met.

  • ingo

    The police wil have to pay for the riots, which means we are paying for these deliberate policy failures under consequetive Governments.
    Thanks for the execellent links mary and john G., Stefans peice had a neat timeline and socially cohessive explanation for one section of society and their remoteness to lief as we experience it.
    I also agree with John Goss. Avaazz should indeed get active in advance of the next election and wittle out some policy goals, constituency by constituency and see whether their percentage of support is higher than the percentage of those who voted for a politicians with his own dogmatic agenda’s.
    Politics is being forced on an apathetic minority who can’t be fazed, but who, when the riots spread out of London, can’t be fast enough to scream blue murder and for more policing.

    The police knows this and has become a state within a state, it is trying tomanipulate pubklic opinion with ‘slow coach’ policing. The officer who gave the order to wait on day one, has given rioters a leg up, in insurance terms, this order and delaying the use of ready contingents will cost us millions.

    The riots should be paid for from the police pension fund, it will sharpen their act, further the insipience within the force, smarting at political decisions and acting up as a private ACPO to the state, is untennable, we cannot have civil servants press, a nice word for it, the Government as to their personal staff policies.

    Without a coherent look at how the benefit system works, how it loosens bonds within the family rather than supports and furthers them, is a vital lesson that should have been learned by these riots.
    Absentee fathers who do not take an interest in their childrens up bringing, out of fear of having their ex partner cut off from benefits, is just example. Then there is help available to have mothers go back to work, early, leaving their children with strangers when they should be with mum, in a throw back to the war when children were shipped out of poor London homes, away from the bombing, to stay with strangers, somthing that would most likely not happen today.

  • mary

    Ingo I expect you know that an e-petition, signed by over 130,000 calling for benefits to be withdrawn from those convicted of rioting and loooting, closed down the website yesterday.
    Just look at what hateful ‘thinking’ lies behind these petitions. These are just those addressing the Department of Work and Pensions.
    That was page 4. There are 11 pages so far.

  • dreoilin

    Apologies if someone has already posted this. I thought it was hilarious:
    (Reuters) – Libyan state television on Thursday said Prime Minister David Cameron was using “Irish and Scottish mercenaries” to tame riots in England.
    “The rebels of Britain approach Liverpool in hit-and-run battles with Cameron’s brigades and mercenaries from Ireland and Scotland. God is Greatest,” said a breaking news caption on Libyan TV’s morning program.
    I’m beginning to think he has a sense of humour. Maybe he’s been reading Craig.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Dreoilin, there appears to be a subset of dictators whose regimes utilise humour as propaganda; think of those of Amin, Mugabe and Qaddafi (and also some of the leaders of Iran). Stalin, too.
    Some of the jokes are actually quite apt – if, that is one separates the man/the regime/the broken bodies from the chuckle.
    Not sure though about Hitler (?jokes about dogs, vegetables or Austrian mitochondria, possibly?), Mao, Bokassa, Pinochet or Pol Pot.
    I’m sure there’s a series of slim volumes, one for each dictator, with illustrations to match: A kind of ‘Edinburgh Fringe For the Mad, Bad and Bloody’.
    Blair’s jokes don’t match-up. He was just a wannabee. Though, as we know from recent events in Norway, wannabees can still kill a lot of people.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    The whole world is very mixed, is multi-everything – as Alan Campbell illustrated some time ago with his excellent and sensual vignette from Colombia. Would you agree, Alan? The world has always been that way. So, the people who are looking to hermetically ‘ethnically cleanse’ (what a dreadful, Nazi-style phrase! And look at its effects on the former Yugoslavia in relation to which the phrase was coined, or at least became widely-known; I prefer the word, ‘pogrom’ or ‘genocide’ – the latter, in its proper usage) places on the basis of some fallacious concept of ‘race’ or ‘religion’ or ‘whatever’ are searching for lost Atlantises that never existed. Does this remind one of something? Indeed it does. In essence, such people are looking to set up an racialist English Caliphate.
    Personally, I would set the Morris (originally, ‘Moorish’) Dancers on them!

  • OldMark

    ‘You, Old Mark, constantly advocate the key ideologies and distortions of the Far Right, in which everything is distilled down to a single issue – race (oh, and its new sibling, religion, which in your contextual framework is simply a cipher for race) – and attempt to propagandise on the basis of this severely flawed rubric.

    This seems to be your major function on this website’

    Suhayl- I’ve rebutted your smear that I’m some sort of neo Nazi on another thread, and won’t bother repeating it here.

    You really do like to play the gatekeeper/political commissar, don’t you ? As Dalrymple/Daniels pithly pointed out elsewhere- ‘Hell hath no fury like a multiculturalist contradicted’.

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