Mary Poppins and Newt Gingrich 87

Being in Africa appears to make me more whimsical that when I am in my book-lined study at home. One of the joys of having small children is that you can get to do childish things, with an excuse. I took Cameron to the Hornby model centre in Broadstairs a few weeks ago. I never tire of watching Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. And recently I re-watched Mary Poppins. I never much liked this, and still am not a great fan, but I had never before realised that the entire thing is an attack on materialism and the banks, particularly the City of London.

There is a moment when Banks finally rebels and turns on the big banker and says: “It turns out, with due respect, when all is said and done, that there’s no such thing as you!” The world of bankers has become even more of a fantasy since, of meaningless “wealth” unrelated to production, and casino speculation.

But the phrase sent my mind flitting to Newt Gingrich. The Palestinians are very real indeed – I used to have a Palestinian girlfriend, and she definitely existed. Palestine is mentioned in Herodotus, and if the bible bashing Gingrich can’t see that “Palestine” and “Philistine” are the same word, he is a greater fool than I supposed. Or does he believe in etymological creationism, that all words were formed by God on the same day in precisely their current form?

The misery of the Palestinian people, squeezed into ever shrinking bantustans, is very very real. What Gingrich is doing is indicating his acquiescence in the genocidal policy of Israel towards the Palestinians. Given what is already happening, it is not a great leap from declaring someone does not exist, to seeking to make that a reality.

Gingrich appears an evil, corrupt, debased manifestation of the real agenda of the United States. He is the picture in America’s attic, with all its evil shown up-front. The man is a walking caricature of seething hatreds. Surely it is Newt Gingrich who does not really exist?

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87 thoughts on “Mary Poppins and Newt Gingrich

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  • Njegos

    Sadly Newt does exist and is enjoying a fair bit of support right now. In fact, he is repeating Golda Meir’s old propaganda about the non-existence of the Palestinian people.

    The good news is that he will be knocked off his perch at some point. The bad news is that it is likely to be by someone even more extreme than him. I despise the Democrats but the Republican Party is the original bottomless well of stupidity and ignorance.

  • Tony

    If Gingrich wins the nomination from the contest of the grotesques, he intends to have John Bolton as his running mate. Not kidding.

  • glenn

    An illustrated dictionary would have a picture of Gingrich next to the word “Chutzpah”. As Leader of the House, he led the prosecution of Clinton over his affair with Monika Lewinsky, while all the same time himself having an adulterous affair with another intern. He’s now on his third wife, each being phased in on top of the previous one (with god knows how many interns etc. in the meanwhile).
    Gingrich tried to serve divorce papers on his first wife as she was waking up from breast surgery. But after all, as he said, “She’s not pretty enough and too old to be the wife of the United States president, and anyway – she’s got cancer.”
    Stepping down as Leader of the House in the face of a record number of “ethics violations”, paying a $300K fine to avoid prosecution and possibly jail, Gingrich tried to dismiss the loss of his position on mean-spirited bigots (somehow!) going after his daughter for being a lesbian.
    Bragging that he gets $60K for a lecture, he explained that he didn’t need to be a lobbyist, and the near $2M he got from the mortgage agency Freddie Mac/ Fannie Mae (privitised government agencies to provide banks with federal money for mortgages) was for giving them a history lesson. That lesson was basically, he later explained, “Don’t give mortgages to people who can’t afford them”. Nice work if you can get it!
    As Leader of the House, Gingrich forced a shutdown of the federal government back in the 1990s, in a fit of pique at having to sit at the back of Air Force One during a trip. “It’s petty, but I think it’s human”, he admitted.
    It’s possible to write a volume of books of the corruption and hypocrisy of this man, without even mentioning his utter lack of personal morality. He’s achieved the distinction of being _the_ most corrupt politician the US has seen in some time, if ever, while he still passes himself off as an intellectual and of the highest integrity. Perhaps he truly does belong in the White House.

  • Komodo

    It looks as if Newt is struggling to find the money to continue his campaign. His opaque funding body, American Solutions, Inc has achieved its primary purpose, to get him up and running, but Gingrich has left it and without him it has been obliged to shut down…apparently without sending its donors in his direction. It’s a tangled tale. But where does an aspirant right (or left)winger go these days in the hope of meeting people who will point friendly businessmen with money to burn in your direction?
    That’s right. AIPAC. And Newt has friends there.
    AIPAC’s current executive director, Howard Kohr, is a conservative Republican who was hired largely because of his personal and political closeness to Newt Gingrich,
    All Newt has to do is make the right noises. And that is what he is doing.
    There is no other lobby in Washington, not one, that has that kind of power. That was obvious when Prime Minister Netanyahu, a consistent opponent of U.S. policies, received a congressional reception worthy of the Second Coming. …. Woe to the senator or Senate aide who even imagines such a thing today.

  • Jon

    I think the Newt illustrates very well that, on issues you don’t personally care about, one can transition from understanding a strong opinion from your political base (that the whole of Israel and Palestine belongs just to Israel) to actually believing that one believes it. But he doesn’t believe it, of course, yet may not actually be possessed of the necessary self-awareness to know that he is “required” to.
    Hopefully this is too much for some of the moderates on the right wing. I think they do exist!

  • Njegos


    Absolutely right. People are told what to want by the fawning corporate media, as Ray McGovern rightly calls it (eg. more ridiculous airport security, more FBI sting operations against terrorists, fewer namby-pamby civil rights). The Repugnants or Demagogues duke it out with promises of infinitely large budgets for this continual destruction of real democracy. The sheep are herded into voting pens after which they fall back into their deep media-inspired lobby-driven coma for another 4 years. Great system. Just what the Founding Fathers had in mind, no doubt.


    I saw that item about Bolton. Talk about evil.


    What does it say for the state of American democracy that someone like this has got even this far?

  • Eddie-G

    The irony of all this is that the modern Israeli identity is at least as much of a contrivance as the modern Palestinian identity, if you want to use the Gingrich formulation.
    (And no, I am not saying that either identity is invented. I’m just saying what would happen if the Gingrich standard was applied consistently.)

  • Arsalan

    People not existing, and making them not exist is exactly what Zionism is all about.

    They sang about a land without a people for a people without a land.
    When in fact the land had a people, and the people had a land.
    The land of Palestine had the Palestinians. The true descendants of the Children of Israel. These people had deeds to the land and keys their houses and many also had documented family trees stretching right back the the Children of Israel.

    It was a lie to say the land didn’t have a people. So the white Zionists started exterminating the people. And have carried on exterminating them to this very day.

    It was also a lie to say the Jewish people didn’t have a land, because they all had citizenship in various European countries and America. To make it a fact, Zionist Bankers helped the Nazis take power.
    And Zionists continue to aid Nazis such as the BNP and EDL to this very day.

  • Herbie

    I’m not sure why anyone cares who gets elected in the US, or anywhere else for that matter. We cheered when Clinton was elected. We cheered when Obama was elected.
    Much better to elect a much more obviously despicable scumbag, and at least have a laugh in the meantime. We’re gonna get fucked anyway.
    Fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice uh eh uh….

  • Azra

    Palestine flag was raised at UNESCO, as we Middle Eastern say “that is spitting in his eyes”.

    If we are talking about invention, then “American” is the biggest invention of all.. Americans are collections of immagrants who slaughtered the Indigeous Indian and stole their lands. No wonder that they identify with Zionists.

  • boindub

    Were the palestinian Jesus and His Mother terrorists or inventions .
    I think I am the first to wish you the Joy and Peace of Christmas. Keep strong and rest in confidence.
    We will work unbroken together to be strong enough to eventually stop the rot.
    Faltering is human but picking yourself up again is heroic. Your dreams will come true.

  • Tom Welsh

    Unfortunately, Craig, Gingrich probably knows his Old Testament well enough to feel that the world would be a better place *without* the Philistines. They don’t get a very good press in the Bible, strangely enough.

    I have never understood why anyone thinks it’s OK for a few million Europeans and Americans to go and settle on some land they happen to fancy in the Near East, casually ejecting the inhabitants and then killing them if they protest. But that’s so similar to the way the Americans came by their own country that they refuse to see any objection.

  • lwtc247

    I’ve always thought it rather apt that USans thought a Newt was appropriate to represent them in the corridors of (publicly visible) power.

  • Herbie

    Edward Said made an interesting film for the BBC about his return home to Palestine in 1998, a few years before his death:
    This was before the BBC became the totally useless outfit it is today. Even then though the BBC were unable to get the programme broadcast in the US. It’s doubtful it would be made by the BBC today.

  • ingo

    Newt is making sure that he has the jewish votes, not Obama and what better than to paraphrase Golda meir and her racialist attitudes. To choose Bolton as his running mate will be fun, gaffs galore. To see them win would mean that Armageddon Inc. is on the throne. More war and more economic crimes by bankers who so seemingly get away with it. How come that nobody of RBS was found guilty of anything?

    How come that not a single journalists will get their arse singed for hacking our phones? Too powerfull to touch, my god, accolade they do not deserve for licking boots.

  • Jack

    Njegos – ‘they have created a “democracy” where people “choose” from what they are offered not from what they want.’
    I’m not aware we’ve ever had any other kind of ‘democracy’, in the USA or UK. Politics is the art of spurious binary choices – and on a mass scale it works every time.

  • larry Levin

    I am not “under some rock” 7 wars have been planned about 8 years ago in the US, wesley clark has said this. the project for greater Israel requires slum clearance, move the cattle to another field.

  • Jack

    I’ve just finished “Palestine – a Personal History” by Karl Sabbagh.
    The start of Chapter 7 is fascinating – “Palestinian Arabs might have ended up governing their own country if a Russian Jew living in Manchester had not developed a chemical process for extracting nail-varnish remover from horse-chestnuts.”…
    Apparently the efficient production of acetone for production of explosives in WW1 was so crucial that the inventor could name his price. His price was (if the book is to be believed) to have a major effect on the Balfour Declaration.
    …”Lloyd George later quipped to a meeting of the Jewish Historical Society: ‘Acetone converted me to Zionism.'”

  • havantaclu

    Tom Welsh, you have put your finger on the problem.

    ‘I have never understood why anyone thinks it’s OK for a few million Europeans and Americans to go and settle on some land they happen to fancy in the Near East, casually ejecting the inhabitants and then killing them if they protest. But that’s so similar to the way the Americans came by their own country that they refuse to see any objection.’

    And it isn’t so long ago either.

    But it was ‘us’, wasn’t it, and the Israelis were, and are, ‘us’ – so of course they can’t be doing anything wrong in following ‘our’ great example.

  • Mary

    It makes no difference who is in the White House (s/be Red House for all the blood it has spilt). All support Israel including Obomber who has just lit the Menorah for Hannukah. Such ‘a jolly holiday’ as Julie and Dick sang. Three years ago, Israel was planning to launch its greater Shoah on Gaza, Cast Lead, named after the Hanukah toy, the dreidel.
    On the other side of the Atlantic ocean and at the Eastern end of the Mediterranean, the mayor of Nazareth doesn’t like Christmas trees going up. They are ‘provocative’.

  • Mary

    Some hope here?

    A new political party has entered the fray as an alternative to Democrats and Republicans ahead of the 2012 elections. On Monday, former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson announced will run for president with the newly formed Justice Party. Although hailing from a solidly Red state, Anderson has been known as one of the most progressive mayors of any major U.S. city in recent years. During his two mayoral terms from 2000 to 2008, Anderson was an outspoken champion of LGBT rights, environmental sustainability, and the antiwar movement in opposition to the Iraq War. Vowing to fight the influence of money over politics, Anderson kicked off his campaign on Monday with a pledge to limit individual donations to $100 a person. Anderson and the Justice Party say they hope to build a grassroots movement heading into the November 2012 elections. “We launched the Justice Party because the entire system is so corrupt,” Anderson says. “It’s so diseased that we know that the public interest is not being served by anyone in the system right now, particularly, [by] the two dominant parties who have sustained this corrupt system and who are sustained by it.”

  • DonnyDarko

    I like one of Shlomo Sand’s hypotheses, that is, the palestinians were the Jews that stayed behind and were converted to Islam as the religion swept across the Middle East. This in turn means that the Israeli’s are defacto committing fratricide.Tragic but possible.The land was definitely inhabited before 1947, because my Aunt and Uncle were with the British Army there.They loved it until the Jewish terrorist groups began their campaigns of terror and ethnic cleansing.They talked about how the arabs could make the desert green… a phrase I heard used about the Israeli’s many years later.
    Ron Paul is being quite aggressive for once in his campaigning and here is his vid on Newt

  • Yonatan

    Just in case you were feeling there was not enough insanity in the ME.

    “Last night, three days after the killing of Mustafa Tamimi – who was killed by a 40mm grenade to the face by a soldier sitting in a protected vehicle – several young settler hoodlums tried to forcibly cross the border to Jordan, in order to create an outpost there. Ha’Kol Hayehudi, Israel’s equivalent of the Rwanda Radio, claimed their purpose was to remind us all that Jordan, too, is a part of Israel.”

  • Abe Rene

    Gingrich’s statements are no doubt motivated by his fight for the American Republican nomination. But so extreme is his position that even the Israeli government doesn’t agree with him. For their own survival, in the long term Israelis are going to have to treat Palestinians justly and seek harmony with them, otherwise Israel will find it increasingly difficult to maintain support even from so staunch an ally as the United States.

  • John Goss

    Donny Darko, Ron Paul has consistently talked of how costly in financial terms are US wars all over the world, and how the US should concentrate on home policies. Despite being a tea-party Republican if he was to keep to his word he is worthy of being president. Quite clearly if he got in he would be surrounded by advisors telling him that things are so bad at home unless we get to steal this Middle Eastern oil, we will have no economy. I think they use the same trick as the Masons, that is, swear them in, compromise them in some way, and then they’re ‘one of us’.
    Unfortunately I listened to Obama’s inaugural speech and thought there was hope for the world yet, bringing the troops home, closing Guantanamo, and so on, and what did we get? That’s right. Some more of the same, the Uncle Same.

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