The Sky Has Not Fallen 830


The shocking death of Lee Rigby quite naturally appals us all. The intention of the crazed little group who conceived this killing was to make it as horrible as possible in order to scare people.

Horrible, sociopathic violence happens to people from time to time. They have done since Cain killed Abel, metaphorically or literally as you choose. Here is another headline today, just as horrific:

A British soldier has been jailed for stabbing a 10-year-old boy after getting drunk on vodka while serving in Afghanistan.

Both that obscene attack and Michael Adebolajo’s appalling actions are borne out of the same conflict. But it is reasonable to suppose that both these incidents involved people with, for whatever reason, a pre-disposition to murderous violence.

Such people have always been with us and will always be with us, but fortunately they are very, very few. In a nation of 60 million, involvement in violent crime is very low. If you are the victim of criminal violence, the odds over the last decade are about one in twenty thousand that the violence inflicted on you will have any linkage to political or terrorist causation. And the odds that you will suffer any kind of violent attack are thankfully pretty remote.

We should not panic from theatrical violence, just deplore and take sober stock. Sadly if a lunatic on the bus decides to strangle you tomorrow, there are no pre-emptive laws that can stop that. We should stop pretending that the state can always prevent.


830 thoughts on “The Sky Has Not Fallen

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  • doug scorgie

    Fedup
    23 May, 2013 – 9:11 pm

    I said to Fedup:

    “Everything you said in this post confirms you to be an establishment troll.”

    I take that statement back and apologise to Fedup.

    I was under the influence of liquid refreshments when I read his original comment.

  • Jesuit Atheist

    “Pretty inefficient conspiracy, I’d say, if the murderers have to hang around for 20 minutes for the AR squad to come and shoot them. Even with blanks, if your conspiracy theory wanders that far.”

    I have no ‘conspiracy thoeory’, I am pointing out anomalies and factual errors in the reporting of a murder because, for some reason, the journalists in this country can’t seem to manage the most basic duties of their chosen career.

  • Komodo

    No, you just stand around casually filming them giving an after event interview? Get a grip man, it’s utter bollocks. No machete, no decapitation, but the Islamic terrorist bit is true right?

    If the want to talk instead of having a go at me I encourage them to talk, friend. No machete, sure. Meat cleaver, knife, gun but no machete. No decapitation? Disappointed by that, are you? Not enough for you that the soldier’s dead? And if the guy says to camera that he is avenging the deaths of Muslims, then I have to incline to the view that he’s got something going for Islam.

    That said, it is arguable that no definition of terrorism that includes the Woolwich murder can conceivably exclude drone strikes. I give you that much, readily. And so does Glenn Greenwald:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/may/23/woolwich-attack-terrorism-blowback

  • MJones

    Habbabkuk

    So two men just murder a soldier, hang around to be arrested and that doesn’t seem a little odd to you. Conspiracy theorist seems to mean person with common sense these days. The main stream media has shown itself to be little more than a government spokesman, they do very little investigation and just repeat what they have been told by the authorities. If that doesn’t encourage you to have a more critical view of what they try and sell you as the truth don’t criticise me for being more than a little reluctant to.

  • Jesuit Atheist

    “Pretty inefficient conspiracy, I’d say, if the murderers have to hang around for 20 minutes for the AR squad to come and shoot them.”

    If they had run off or been shot by one of the hundreds of armed soldiers stationed just yards away in the barracks (yes, where were they?) we would never have known that they were “Muslim terrorists” would we?

    In fact if it wasn’t for the hanging around and the interview we wouldn’t even “know” they were “Muslim terrorists” would we? They could have just been some drug crazed scumbags. So, in fact, the hanging around works in favour of this being a staged event.

  • Sofia Zabolotna-Habbercake

    Oops! I must not write in haste!

    Sorry, a freudian slip there, “How many civilians get billed……”

    Well we all pay for damned killing don’t we? But I think even the most trollish understood what I was really asking.

    So Dad, Mr Kempe and RD, I’m still waiting for an answer for my “stupid question”.

  • Jesuit Atheist

    Also, there is no doubt that journalists were being briefed by ‘officials’ throughout the event, using phrases like “said to be” and “reported to have said” etc.

    This is how journalists interject their source’s material into their reports. And what was mostly the subject of these “said to be”‘s and “reported to have said”‘s? Their links to Islamic terrorism and the internet… basically some government/police spokesperson is whispering in the journalists ear ‘moslem terrorists radicalised on the internet’ and Nick Robinson and co. dutifully repeat verbatim.

  • Jesuit Atheist

    “No machete, sure. Meat cleaver, knife, gun but no machete. No decapitation? Disappointed by that, are you?”

    Disappointed with the level or journalism mate, and to be honest disappointed that people swallow it so willingly.

    A young man was murdered in the most brutal fashion and I believe that he was murdered to further a political agenda that has absolutely nothing to do with Islam or the stated motives of the killers.

    Why do you have a problem with me holding this view?

  • doug scorgie

    MJones
    24 May, 2013 – 11:14 am

    “This attack was as fake as the Boston bombings.”

    MJones, don’t be silly.

  • resident dissident

    Sofia

    I think you missed my point that conflicts are not always about a numbers game – I don’t really want to go through the whole argument about Western Intervention and Islamism as my guess is that it would only generate heat rather than light here. But perhaps you should just consider a little something in Lindsey German’s statement yesterday – where she pointed to the recent increase in sectarian violence in Iraq. THis has happened – but what she failed to point out that the level has reduced very substantially in recent years – but rather than trying to identify steps to try and get things back on course (and reduce the level of killing which results) she wanted to try and link this to what is pretty clearly a sectarian assault on our streets in London. Do you really think this is the behaviour of those who want to reduce violence or killings in the future – or is it perhaps the behaviour of those trying to justify an histroic political position and indulging in point scoring.

    MJones

    Of course it was a conspiracy – nearly all criminal acts are – it is just not the one that you and others are now trying to fashion in order to fit your political preferences.

  • MJones

    resident dissident

    I don’t have a political preference I just prefer to be told the truth and there doesn’t seem to be a lot out there in media land.

  • Dreoilin

    “Enough inverted commas there I trust for the pedantic Dreoilin?
    Synonyms Pedantic – punctilious – donnish – priggish – meticulous”

    Mary/April, it has feck-all to do with all that crap. It’s so your posts can be easier read and understood. And so we know what’s quoted and what’s not.

    And no, you have not adequately distinguished copy and paste from your own words, above, either. Can you not put inverted commas at the beginning and end of copy and paste?

    I’ve been intending to say that to you for months. Habbabkuk simply served as a reminder.

  • April Showers

    Did the Lt Col mean to imply that the deceased soldier was a talented and experienced machine gunner. Should he have used different adjectives for the musical and the military professions?

    Lieutenant Colonel Jim Taylor MBE, Commanding Officer Second Fusiliers, described Rigby as “an experienced and talented side drummer and machine gunner, he was a true warrior and served with distinction in Afghanistan, Germany and Cyprus.”

  • Kempe

    “Ignore the bit after the ranting madman and the comments on the pages but look at this, no blood on his hands”

    Look at the other red objects in the picture, the red lines on the road and the triangle on the road sign behind him, neither are the right colour. The red lines look pink and the triangle barely shows up at all. The blood isn’t very obvious because the colour balance of the device used to record the scene is incorrect. It isn’t registering the reds very well. that’s all. No conspiracy, no false flag, nothing, just a defective camera sensor.

  • Clark

    I wonder how much of the pro-corporate media support that we see here is motivated by the simple fact that people like their newspapers? I remember the luxury of physical newspapers, printed in (the cheapest possible) ink on (an excuse for) paper. Having had considerable experience with illegal drugs, I can state that newspapers are addictive in a very similar way; the regular user craves, not the substance of addiction, but the feelings that the substance evokes.

    No matter the name on the rag, the corporate media is a one-trick pony – it makes the consumer feel morally superior. It matters not to what or whom; the reader is tricked into feeling superior to certain politicians, certain criminals, carefully selected celebrities, people of other religions or of no religion – whatever; the apparent target is irrelevant, because the real target is the reader’s thoughts and feelings, which are being rendered addicted, and vulnerable to further manipulation: “You are an informed person (so long as you continue to buy, read, consume). We show you the depravity of them (take comfort in the righteousness of us)”.

    Just as an addict will defend from criticism both the drug and the people who supply it, so too addicts of the corporate media. Who are you to argue against something that makes me feel better about myself? I object to your campaign against my paper, which daily reassures me that most evil is external to myself, and to the nations and societies I’m embedded within. Life is good, so shut up!

    An old friend of mine was an old-school copper, your stereotypical racist, sexist low-order Mason (really, he was!). He was a brilliant bloke; clever, industrious, generous, with a strong sense of fairness and right and wrong, which was utterly at odds with his prejudice when discussing “current affairs” and other output from the media. He treated people fairly in real life, but unquestioningly accepted unfair and untrue prejudice about people he’d never met, so long as he’d read it in the paper.

    He was a Daily Mail reader, and he often complained about his high blood pressure. I occasionally advised him to cancel his paper because it was written in a manner deliberately contrived to raise its readers’ blood pressure, but he never failed to slog through it, getting outraged about this and that, but especially about them.

  • Dreoilin

    “Ignore the bit after the ranting madman and the comments on the pages but look at this, no blood on his hands”

    There was clearly blood on his hands. His hands were covered in it. But both their clothes (and the other guy had a beige coat on) had singularly little blood for two guys who had purportedly just cut someone’s carotid arteries. Their coats should have been plastered with it! It is odd.

    Anyway, apparently they didn’t behead him. So that explains that?

  • Sofia Zabolotna-Habbercake

    RD.
    “…..conflicts are not always about a numbers game………”
    You put words in my mouth.

    I’ve been frustrated that none of you are willing to give a simple answer to a simple question and I’m beginning to get angry now. You wouldn’t want me to get angry. Last time that happened was in Home Economics and Catriona Eusliss-Fekker fainted and there’s still cake-mix on the ceiling of 4b. Miss Trunchball made me stand at the far end of the hockey field all afternoon to cool off and I scorched all the grass.

    Please give an answer in numerals this time.

    1. Dead at the hands of Muslim terrorists.
    Insert numeral here _____

    2. Dead at the hands of fighters of Muslim Terrorists.
    Insert numeral here_____

    And Dreoilin and April. Will you ever stop squabbling and get back to your usual useful selves or I’ll have to come and sort you both out too! Don’t we know what April was driving at, and yes I’d vote a few more inverted commas her way so I don’t have to overheat my brain changing the voices.

  • Catriona Eusliss-Fekker

    That’s a lie. I was just hiding under my desk.

    RD, Mr Hubblekoop and Kempe. Please just give her a proper answer and make it stop.

    1.____

    2.____

  • Kempe

    “But both their clothes (and the other guy had a beige coat on) had singularly little blood for two guys who had purportedly just cut someone’s carotid arteries.”

    Well if the poor devil was already dead and his heart no longer pumping there wouldn’t be.

  • nevermind

    During the May month of our war in Afghanistan a soldier who served in Helmand as a machine gunner was killed on the streets of London, by two disturbed crack ( is this true) users, using knifes and meat cleavers of sorts.

    Its tough in a war, but to be expected and there is more to come with our increasing meddling in others affairs.

    This action was designed to hit the public perception, like being thrown into a cold pool after the sauna, but such random acts of calculated violence will not deter people from their normal life’s. Still, those in power are frightened that it will make people think more about the realities of our Foreign policy and engagements abroad and question it. Some might take up other actions, large scale civil disobedience that might be construed and reported as terrorism of sorts.

    Should Syria be actively engaged, Iraq could easily erupt into full blown civil war, not to speak of Iran’s clammy situation visa vie Bahrain’s Shia’s and the amassed military might surrounding it, all of them fodder to the arms dealers pulling the strings.

    These two calculated men murdered a soldier, not any civilian as they appeared in front of them, they could discriminate and differentiate in their actions and hence are not mad.

    They did not run away, but favoured engaging the police, they wanted to be held accountable for their distinct action.

    Whatever it turns out to be, its propaganda value is being milked for all its worth. If it was staged, whatever will they come up next with to sell papers?
    ‘Murderous zombie escaping Westminster croft kills lollypop lady’?

    Off the bickering topic…..

    A rainbow coalition deciding and voting on issue by issue have voted in a Labour leader to Norfolk county council. Never in the history of the Tory’s on NCC have they ever had more exercise. In trying to stifle everything and anything they have to indicate their desire to have a recorded vote, by standing up, which they duly did all morning long.
    They also decided to look at forms of committee systems and to ditch the cabinet system in a years time.

  • April Showers

    The sky has not fallen but it will soon be tanks at Heathrow, again, in Blunkett style.

    One aircraft to Oslo with 75 onboard returns to Heathrow with an engine fire and the cowling missing on the other. A bird strike we hear. It flew back to Heathrow from the Essex direction over London??? Can that be right?

    Then a Pakistan Airways plane with >300 on board incoming to Manchester has just been diverted to Stansted due to a security alert received at Manchester. It has landed safely and is parked away from the terminal buildings.

    Situation Jumpy.

    PS I have not asked for style lessons nor need any additional ones from the resident troll. I will continue in my own fashion so tough.

  • April Showers

    PS The style thing is a total irrelevance in the scheme of the terrible things that are going on around us. And I didn’t start it! I resent the resident troll being fed too.

    PPS Two men from the Pakistan flight have been arrested.

  • Sofia Zabolotna-Habbercake

    April.

    You are quite right, “The style thing is a total irrelevance in the scheme of the terrible things that are going on around us.”

    I’m sorry if you feel I’m feeding the resident troll. I just can’t resist. The narrative that he peddles and the frequent nastiness of his style invites ridicule. I know much of his venom is directed at you personally. That must be truly unpleasant for you.

    Please scroll past my posts if they distract you at all from the job you do so well.

    I don’t think you have anything to gain by engaging with him. I would agree that that only feeds his habit but I also feel he should be challenged to explain himself. How to square the circle? It beats me.

    Please regard my interventions as a rather oblique encouragement to yourself and all those others who truly contribute on this blog.

  • resident dissident

    April Showers

    I don’t really care about your style but I do have something of a problem with you trying to enlist Dennis Potter to your cause. I am pretty certain that someone who said this about religion:

    BRAGG : You said earlier that it wasn’t to do with believing that life was eternal, but have you any feeling from the position you’re in, that it might be? You’ve said that you’ve never quite thrown off the idea of believing in God, and it features in a lot of your work.

    POTTER : Well, I don’t know. God’s a rumor, if you like. Christianity or indeed any other religion that is a religion because of fear of death or hope that there is something beyond death does not interest me. What kind of cruel old bugger is God if it’s terror that is the ruling edifice, the structure of religion? And too often, for too many people, it is. Now that to me isn’t religion.

    Religion has always been — I’ve said it before, but it doesn’t matter, I won’t get many more chances to repeat myself — thank God, religion to me has always been the wound, not the bandage. I don’t see the point of not acknowledging the pain and the misery and the grief of the world, and if you say, “Ah, but God understands” or through that you come to a greater appreciation, I then think, “That’s not God, that’s not my God, that’s not how I see God.”

    I see God in us or with us, if I see God at all, as shreds and particles and rumors, some knowledge that we have, some feeling why we sing and dance and act, why we paint, why we love, why make art.

    All the things that separate us from the purely animal in us are palpably there, and you can call them what you like, and you can theologize about them, and you can build great structures of belief about them. The fact is they are there and I have no means of knowing whether that thereness in some sense doesn’t cling to what I call me.

    http://www.nytimes.com/1994/06/12/arts/dennis-potter-s-last-interview-on-nowness-and-his-work.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

    or who was quoted as saying the following:

    “I believe everybody is responsible for what they do themselves.”

    http://www.searchquotes.com/quotation/I_believe_everybody_is_responsible_for_what_they_do_themselves./163688/

    Would have a rather different perspective on what happened In Woolwich than you and the other warped apologists. You owe an apology to Dennis Potter, Lee Rigby and their relatives.

  • Komodo

    A young man was murdered in the most brutal fashion and I believe that he was murdered to further a political agenda that has absolutely nothing to do with Islam or the stated motives of the killers.

    Why do you have a problem with me holding this view?

    Hold any view you want – that’s your privilege. But I think to draw the conclusion your view requires – that a serving soldier was intentionally murdered by fake terrorists working for The Establishment (or whoever) who were then shot by the same Establishment(or whoever) after a public clusterfuck, is a portrait of unreality too far. And that’s my view. Problem?

    Certainly it feeds the WoT agenda. It is likely to further reduce civil liberties in its wake. Which is exactly what any terrorist is aiming for. But the Establishment has no need to create incidents: they’ll happen naturally. And the Establishment will obligingly widen the panic that the terrorist hopes to spread. Occam’s Razor applies here somewhere.

    Ideally, this would have got no more specialised attention than any other spectacularly ugly crime, and been dealt with accordingly, by the criminal law. The terrorists (whoever they are) won some time ago, when Western governments agreed to put their activities into a special category (under which almost any serious crime may be prosecuted on the say-so of intelligence agencies and the police). Much better to prosecut ‘terrorist crimes’ under the perfectly adequate common law, which is based on open procedures and defined penalties, and to deny the terrorists a status distinct from other murderers, money launderers and preachers of internecine hatred.

  • Sofia Zabolotna-Habbercake

    Hi RD.

    It’s clear to me now that nneither you or the other resident trolls will answer my question. Not even with simple numerals. I can only conclude that you know there is no way to interpret those figures that could possibly fit with the false narratives that you peddle.

    Now you are off about God and talking to Mary as if she, and other contributers here are “…warped apologists…” for whatever happened in Woolwich. WTF?

    Can you give just one example of April, or any any other contributer here for that matter, posting anything that seeks to justify rather than understand and find rational causes for that event?

    If you think that trying to understand an incident and examine the inconsistencies in the information being released through the official channels, makes a person an apologist for the attack, then you are even more willfully deluded than I thought.

    Why am I even bothering to write this to someone who puts faith in their leaders’ (most of them proven serial liars) stories before common sense?

  • Komodo

    ‘In fact if it wasn’t for the hanging around and the interview we wouldn’t even “know” they were “Muslim terrorists” would we? They could have just been some drug crazed scumbags. So, in fact, the hanging around works in favour of this being a staged event.’

    Or in favour of said scumbags wanting it to be known why they did it. Before giving themselves the best possible chance of being shot by the police, in the best tradition of deluded wannabe martyrs. Terrorism is nothing without publicity.

    Otherwise, they’d have just been some drug-crazed scumbags, and would have spent the next couple of decades locked up.

    Still, 9/11 was personally ordered by George Bush and WW2 was started by George Formby on behalf of the Rothschilds. Sure.

  • Dreoilin

    More likely that evil Dick Cheney, Komodo. And most likely not ordered, but allowed to happen.

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