The Trident Test 310

The Rochester By-Election further destroys the intellectual case for the BBC’s decision that only male party leaders who support Trident can debate on TV before the UK general election.

The Greens got five times as many votes as the Lib Dems in Rochester, and are ahead of them in several recent national opinion polls. I do not posit the support of Trident as the criterion for inclusion, in any sense as a joke. Support of Trident stands as a good marker for adhesion to the neo-con establishment consensus. The establishment is simply not prepared for more radical views to be put before the public as a serious choice. UKIP is the chosen right wing vehicle into which disillusion with politicians should be channelled.

The BBC justification for including UKIP is that they have shown a “substantial increase in electoral support”, and the BBC argue that the Greens have not done so. There are two major problems with this argument.

The first is that UKIP’s “massive increase in electoral support” has been massively boosted by a huge amount of publicity given to UKIP for the last two years, especially by the BBC. The BBC is citing the effect of its own propaganda as justification for continuing that propaganda. If the Greens had been given as much publicity as UKIP, the electoral climate would be very different.

The second is that this appears to be a one way argument. If UKIP’s massive increase in electoral support can get them included, surely the Lib Dems total collapse in electoral support should get them excluded? The injustice of including the Lib Dems and not the Greens, when the Greens are beating them not just in opinion polls but in real polls, cannot simply be brushed aside.

We then have the SNP. There is a very real possibility that the SNP will have more MPs than the Lib Dems after the next election. Indeed, one recent opinion poll put them ahead of the Lib Dems in polling across the entire UK, even though all those SNP voters were just in Scotland. For the BBC to push so hard the line that we are “Better Together”, and then exclude the party supported by the plurality of Scots from UK debate, is an irony only the BBC cannot see. That some viewers of a UK debate would have no opportunity to vote SNP, would not remove their very real interest in understanding and questioning the views of what will be a major component of the parliament which governs them.

The Greens, Plaid Cymru and the SNP have female leaders and are anti-Trident, a symbol of their broad radicalism. All are, to use that crude measure, to the left of the parties which will be included. To be in, you have to be led by an identikit posh male and support Trident. That is the BBC test.

310 thoughts on “The Trident Test

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  • Ben the Inquisitor

    “I think Dickens should have written a book about your expectations.” lol

    ‘May I have some more, sir?’

  • John Goss

    N_ sensible comment. Thanks. Sorry to hear you voted No because it was a good opportunity for Scotland to get control of its own economy. Nevertheless I respect your honesty. Perhaps next time you might change your mind. As Craig has said anybody thinking they were going to get any meaningful concessions from Westminster are totally out of touch. I guess others might have deduced this: capping councils (or countries in your case) by Westminster is not about frivolous spending from local authorities. It is about getting any superfluous tax into the pockets of central government. It’s easy maths. Fight for your rights.

  • Sod off above your weight

    Yes, by all means let’s put that referendum behind us – that absurd stilted ritual – and get on with a real referendum about the Scottish people’s rights to peace and self-determination. The next referendum won’t about threatening Granny’s pension. It will be about the torture and aggression and rights derogation of the City of London regime, and what an independent Scotland can do to curb it. It will be about all the rights that Britain shits on: your right to housing, education, health, free expression of the will of the electors, and free disposition of Scottish national wealth.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    I don’t have to photograph my angel..cos she does it for Free…well O.K. she occasionally appears in the local press…with all her mates..Growing Food…at the Local Community allotments…

    If You Ever Watched Bill & Ben…The Flowerpot Men..Well There was a Sunflower There Too…She was called Little Weed – on The BBC..

    Well That Sunflower is My Wife.


  • Sofia

    Another long night of terror for the children of the Donbas. Another tragedy we won’t see on the BBC.

    How many more months will this go on in our name?

    “From a war that does not exist actually, if you would believe the western and German media. A war in Europe that no one sees. Because it does not take place in the media. Because it is hidden and hushed up. And though it exists here in Donetsk in southeastern Ukraine, where I live since over 2 months. In the middle of a metropolis that is heavily bombarded daily by the Ukrainian army.

    The war is here among us, it is in the midst between us, between me and these three girls – Paulina, Nastya and Katya. It is in their eyes, their voices, burned into their souls.”

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Mark,,I thought I got myself banned again…cos I have been rather critical. Its lovely to read what you write…but I think I already know most of what you are writing..from the first couple of paragraphs..The thing is we Have Got To Write The TRUTH…as close as we can…sure we are all going to make mistakes..and sometimes perhaps look very silly and pathetic..and even maybe almost emotionally destroyed on the ground…like you have lost everything…But there were no holes in reality I was symbolically deep underground..I had fallen into a well..and I thought I would never climb out..but there was this girl on the ground far above me…and she reached down her hand..and pulled me back up to the ground…

    I looked at her…cos she really did…and I asked her…

    Hey…Lets Make Babies…Lets Get Married..I want to Spend The Rest of My Life With You…

    What Could The Girl Say???


  • ------------·´`·.¸¸.¸¸.··.¸¸Node

    Resident Dissident 23 Nov, 2014 – 10:39 pm :“I would also expect the mods to remove the link because of its clear racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic content.”

    While you’re at it, Mods, please also remove the deeply offensive link to the racist JTA website (The Global Jewish News Source) which Resident Dissident has posted at 4:36 pm. It encourages discrimination against Arabs, incites violence against other races, showcases people taking pride in so-called racial superiority, and other disgusting examples of sick and depraved ideology.

    To give just one example, there is a long article relating the racist rantings of Rabbi Steven Pruzansky. It’s called “Dealing with Savages.” The JTA begins by supplying a link to a cached copy (because the original was deleted due to its extreme racism) and then goes on to quote the rabbi extensively:

    “Pruzansky refers to “the Arab-Muslim animals that span the globe chopping, hacking and merrily decapitating,” and then writes, “At a certain point, the unrestrained behavior of unruly animals becomes the fault of the zookeeper, not the animals.”

    So what should Israel do? According to Pruzansky, essentially end civil and human rights for many Arab Israelis and Palestinians. Beyond killing all terrorists and demolishing their extended families’ homes, Pruzansky says Israel should destroy entire Arab villages if more than one terrorist comes from them. All the residents of those villages, he writes, should be expelled.

    He also writes that rioters and stone-throwers should be shot with live ammunition, and that reporters should be barred from these scenes and have their cameras confiscated.”

    Resident Dissident clearly identifies with some of the sentiments expressed on this website, but that does not necessarily make him a racist too. It would be petty, vindictive and unfair to hold him responsible for all the content of every website he links to. Let’s all use a bit of common sense.

  • jivss


    Shall i save you the trouble and just pre-moderate myself for daring to ask what the fuck the policies actually are on this blog?

  • Macky

    Resident Dissident; “Macky yet again fails the test of providing evidence to support his ridiculous assertions”

    What would be really ridiculous would be you denying that you;

    “care enough for the ordinary Syrians” to advocate Western action again the “Evil Assad”

    “care enough for the ordinary Russians” to advocate Western action again the “Evil Putin”

    “cared enough for the ordinary Libyans” to have advocated for Western action against the “Evil Gaddafi”


    Not cared enough for the ordinary Israelis, &/or the ordinary Palestinians, to have ever advocated Western acition against the War Criminals that run the Rouge State of Israel.

    Instead you consistently deflected criticism against Israeli actions on the flimsiest pretext for slandering people as anti-Semitic.

    As already stated, your long track record here condemns you by providing all the evidence you have left in abundance for all to judge.

  • ------------·´`·.¸¸.¸¸.··.¸¸Node

    @Jives & Ben The policy is ‘Use Your Common Sense‘. If we have detailed rules, many posters will skirt as close to the edge as possible then demand an explanation if their judgement differs from the mod’s. The more rules you have, the more rules you need.

    I sometime visit another forum – The Magic Café. After a few spats, some posting guidelines were issued. They immediately needed clarification, then additional rules, then a code of etiquette, more clarifications, adjudication procedures, hints, ……. here, see for yourself. That’s just one page from a 7-item menu which is itself just one of 8 choices on a ‘welcome to New Posters’ menu.’ I doubt if anyone has ever read all the ‘read this before you post’ instructions.

     So if that’s what you want, keep demanding to have everything spelled out for you. If not, use your common sense.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    You’ve got to work for it if you want to create a thing of beauty..sure you maybe a great artist at the age of 5 and 7…and a Brilliant photographer..ever since…if you just put your eye to it..

    She just got the moments…instinctively..for her “A” Level in Photography…she tried to fake it with her friends…but it all just looked like she skipped school and went up to London Dressed as a Press Photographer..looking all of 15..maybe 17

    and it is my little girl spinning around at the G20 protests..between the Peaceful Protesters and The Riot Police…and she was photographing them with this big SLR I had bought her..and they thought..well we can’t have a riot or a ruck now…look at her..she might get it your sister??

    Why Not???

    You Girl..are The Best Photographer I have ever met..and I am your Dad…

    Tony xx

  • Resident Dissident

    A node

    I linked to that particular JTA page because it quoted a newsarticle regarding reports on how the Stalinist authorities had treated Jewish emmigrants – I was not even aware of the JTA’s other activities, which if as you say they are I most definitely do not approve and I apologise if any offence was caused. On the other hand John Goss’s link was to a page which clearly included offensive and racist content for which he is unable to apologise to myself at who it was aimed or even the readers here as a whole.

  • Resident Dissident


    Yes I do recommend action against dictators and despots – as to what action I recommend that does vary with the particular circumstances, but I somehow doubt you have the reading skills to appreciate that I see plently of alternatives other than outright war. You on the other hand would do nothing – so since you are doing nothing you might wish to try and support your original accusations.

  • Mary

    On the day when NHS staff are staging a 4 hour walk out, Jack Monroe is spot on. Only recently at PMQs Cameron said he needed no lessons.

    Outrage at Left-wing blogger’s sick tweet saying Cameron should resign for using his ‘dead son’ as a front to privatise NHS
    Jack Monroe writes for The Guardian on cookery and poverty issues
    Said PM ‘uses stories about his dead son as misty-eyed rhetoric’ on NHS
    His son Ivan, who suffered from cerebral palsy and epilepsy, died in 2009
    Tory backbenchers express disgust at ‘distasteful’ and ‘sick’ comments

    What a hypocrite.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Spot on, Mary. As Alex, the blogger says –

    I am no fan of Gordon Brown, but credit ought to go where it is due. The man is partly blind, he and his wife lost a child only days after she was born, then had another diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. There was no denial; no attempt to hide away the facts; no shame. But there was also no feeding the media in order to boost likeability – and, heaven knows, Brown needed it. There was stoicism. There was dignity.

    The comments are enlightening, too. Most recognise that this is a legitimate criticism, not least on account of Cameron’s bland hypocrisy.

    He has presided over an unprecedented, concerted campaign against the NHS. So much so, that the very unit in which his child died is threatened with closure. To do this while citing his personal experiences to silence his critics, is unspeakably wicked.

    Fortunately the Imperial College Healthcare Trust’s plan to flog St Mary’s (2012 -BZ) to developers hasn’t been realised. But, like many other trusts, they’ve been severely hampered by the Tories:

    Presumably with Cameron’s approval…

    To stand there, at the dispatch box, and invoke his plight as the parent of a disabled child, then minutes later announce the closure of 36 Remploy factories (not via a statement by the relevant minister, but by placing a letter in the library)(2012 – BZ) is utterly cowardly.

    (July 2014:)

    Strangely absent from the MSM- who bought Remploy Automotive? But Arlington Industries Group was happy.

    Sounds great. But is it?

    Lorra lorra liability there….

    If not the un-remployed –

    (October 2014:)

  • nevermind

    “Is Der Spiegel Mainstream Media? ”

    Indeed Tim they are, establishment media and all knowing Government information base. Der Spiegel has changed though, its become more mouthpiece than its used to be.
    For example, an article such as this one about the Starfighter affair and Franz Josef Strauss machinations around buying that crappy fighter jet, would not be written by der Spiegel today.

    this from 1982

  • Macky

    Resident Fantasist @ 7.11 am

    Sorry to break into your comforting make-believe world, but the only person you are fooling with your self righteous fairy tales, is yourself.

  • Mary

    May is about to speak CH 132. Removing more of our freedoms….expect beheadings in shopping malls… Etc etc

  • John Goss

    Apologies Mods for linking to that awful site, encyclopedia dramatica based in Sweden. I was busy with a bottle of Californian red (Paul Masson) which is not bad for a blend, and cheap as chips. I was also trying to do some work. Consequently I did not check the content and genuinely had no idea what it was a about. I just Googled rationalwiki looking for dissent and did not really study the page. My comment was praise for Global Research which Resident Dissident had dissed using his heavily biased and disreputable link, which he often uses as a source of contradiction to facts, twice last night indeed. Let me say clearly encyclopedia dramatica is no more a reliable source than and a lot more racist, sexist and homophobic. I will not get sucked into responding to RD again.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    My bad. Tony’s been talking again. In Egypt. About Palestine. Egypt wants a single state solution throughout Israel – at least that’s what it looks like. And will send Egyptian troops to “help stabilise it”

    Doesn’t look a lot like the two-state solution Tony has never stopped pretending he wants, in defiance of the facts on the ground. Looks more like the bantustan option. Especially as …..

    “What is problematic about the law in its current form is that if it does get passed, and is enshrined in Israel’s legal system, it would effectively mean that those who do not self-identify themselves as Jews become second class citizens,”

  • lysias

    Thus illustrating that it is possible, after you have found through a search a page that supports a point you want to make, that it is possible to link to a site that also has objectionable content, on other pages. Why is that an offense, if the page you linked to is unobjectionable? Does it also become an offense to link to a site that happens to have linked to an objectionable site? Are you supposed to check everything said on a site, on every page? Are you supposed to follow all its links? What’s the reason for all this censorship?

  • nevermind

    And just in time for the festive season a new board game designed by Ba’al, for the up and coming careerist politicians who likes to know what their model idiot does
    Its called ‘where is Tony our middle east peace monger?’ and charts all his travails through the world, you can play the one year version or the much longer five year version, with lots of coward bunga bunga and high flying jinks.

    He meets with important people like the pope, many leaders of influence and sometimes, his wife and children, but mostly he lives a Gypsy lifestyle flying around that lovely planet of ours trying his best to wreck it for his own interests.

    There is also much shorter game available called ‘where is Werritty’

  • Resident Dissident

    “Thus illustrating that it is possible, after you have found through a search a page that supports a point you want to make, that it is possible to link to a site that also has objectionable content, on other pages.”

    The content I highlighted was on the page Mr Goss linked to not elsewhere on the site – and still no apology despite his admitted drunkeness.

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