A Woodworm Off the Old Block 230


I used to discuss foreign affairs with Tony Benn over tea in his kitchen in Holland Park when I lived a short walk away. I get a mention in his later published diaries in this regard. I was therefore saddened to hear his son, Hilary, at Labour Party Conference today align himself with the establishment in a way much more in tune with their aristocratic ancestors.

Benn was sending out neo-con friendly signals like there was no tomorrow. The first came from the very start, when he paid unnecessary and fulsome tribute to the really horrible wee Dougie Alexander who had “served his constituents extremely well”. That really was a pathetic lie. Wee Dougie paid no attention whatsoever to his constituents and took them entirely for granted. Labour’s lack in Scotland of any foundation in the people was what made it so easy for us to topple the Labour monolith.

Benn went on to advocate the “Responsibility to Protect”, the Blairite code for supporting United States military and especially bombing missions abroad. The thesis that Western bombing improves and stabilises countries appears tested well beyond destruction, but the neo-cons stick with it because of the corporate interests it does so much to boost.

Benn disgracefully then called in the body of little Alayn in argument for bombing Syria. He even noted that Alayn had fled Kobani, which “the BBC had reported as almost completely destroyed”, without mentioning – as the BBC did not mention – that some of that destruction had been caused by repeated American bombings of Kobani.

I am sorry that Tony’s son turned out to be a vicious, warmongering, lying, neo-con bastard.


230 thoughts on “A Woodworm Off the Old Block

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  • harry law

    “Benn went on to advocate the “Responsibility to Protect”, the Blairite code for supporting United States military and especially bombing missions abroad”. The whole purpose of R2P is that it is, or should be done through the UN. With all 5 veto wielding powers approving. The problem has been the US by-passing the UNSC with “Coalitions of the willing”.
    1. The State carries the primary responsibility for the protection of populations from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.

    2. The international community has a responsibility to assist States in fulfilling this responsibility.http://www.responsibilitytoprotect.org/index.php/about-rtop

    3. The international community should use appropriate diplomatic, humanitarian and other peaceful means to protect populations from these crimes. If a State fails to protect its populations or is in fact the perpetrator of crimes, the international community must be prepared to take stronger measures, including the collective use of force THROUGH THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL.[My Bold]

  • Fwl

    On the Public QE story there are rumors, and therefore potentially and probably rubbish self serving and untrue, that a certain rather big company in trouble of late and especially today, which has rather a lot of debt and a lot of derivative contracts could become a catalyst for helicopter money. Although given its not an American company I can’t see that being the case. Anyway, if something like that were to ever happen i.e. a bailout to help vested financial interests such as counterparts in complicated derivative trades what chance would Jeremy Corbyn have of redirecting the flow to socially more useful ends. None, unless a lot of economists (presumably these would be Keynesians or neo-keynesians or some new name or other)were allowed to pontificate on the benefits of such a scheme. I suppose starting with Japanese economic theory could be a start on the basis that QE there appears to have some public works aspect, although I hope that we don’t end up with concrete in parks.

    My compromise would be to announce that we use public funds to build schools, hospitals and national infrastructure, which are built to last with really good basic materials such as copper, copper, and more copper.

    Everyone happy then (save for hedgies short Glencore).

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Salford Lad

    “George Osborne has studied Politics at Oxford.”

    _____________________

    History, actually.

    ////////////////////

    And on a point of information, no post-War Chancellor after Sir Stafford Cripps studied economics at university or was qualified in economic (except in terms of on-the-job learning).

    The same comment applies to most of the Financial Secretaries to the Treasury.

    And to most of the Economic Secretaries to the Treasury.

    And even to most of the Permanent Secretaries at the Treasury.

    I shall not comment on the rest of your post.

  • Fwl

    Seriously, a national fund to buy up cheap core materials and sources of energy, which are likely to be in the national interest is a good idea.

    We can’t do that because we cleave to the market economy and probably some European laws.

    I would be surprised if China is not stockpiling. Maybe go short paper with one hand and long the real stuff with the other.

    Such a fund would be a better use of money printing than saving burnt out finance houses. We could sell it when the market picked up or use it to rebuild our own infrastructure.

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Ben

    “..but we appear to be flaccidly and flailingly flinging our cocks around…”

    ______________________

    Speak for yourself, laddie.

    I certainly don’t – after all, we only have one of them, eh what?

  • Anon1

    Macky writes of Benn:

    “One of the greatest politicians of our times.”

    So you’ll be able to tell us what he actually achieved?

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Glenn

    “But why do you [Ishmael] think -you- are being singled out for such high-priority, special treatment, so that the secret services would go to all this trouble?”

    _________________

    Because he’s paranoid?

  • glenn

    Anon1: “So you’ll be able to tell us what he actually achieved?

    He encouraged us. Which is a damn sight more than your motley collection of neo-fascist, Establishment operatives, money-grubbers, war-mongers, racists, lackeys, brown-shirts, false propagandists and sundry stooges like yourself ever achieved.

  • Anon1

    Fedup writes:

    “Hilary Benn seems to have not inherited the compassion gene from his father.”

    Perhaps not. But he did inherit a whole lot more money thanks to his father’s tax avoidance.

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Salford Lad

    “Bashir Assad has been elected twice by his own people in Democratic elections.”

    ____________________

    That is a mistaken view.

    Please name his opponent(s) in those two last two Presidential elections, or at least the party in whose name they were standing for election.

    You seem to have a novel view of “Democratic” elections.

    PS – I love the capital “D”

  • Anon1

    “He encouraged us. Which is a damn sight more than your motley collection of neo-fascist, Establishment operatives, money-grubbers, war-mongers, racists, lackeys, brown-shirts, false propagandists and sundry stooges like yourself ever achieved.”

    LOL.

    #Racistfascistnazi

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Eddie-g

    “I don’t agree with that – the move to Central Bank “independence” has been the way of the world for around 3 decades at least. The Bank of England got given it – specifically, interest rate setting powers – in 1997, something Ken Clarke and Gordon Brown both wanted.”
    ________________

    One should also note that, independently of what happened in the UK, national Central Bank independence was required by the Maastricht Treaty for the move to the single currency.

  • Ishmael

    Sure, I don’t know about the van…But i’m a million miles away from being otherwise convinced of anything else I said, it’s just too many things that don’t add up.

    “state of worry, poor chap. It rendered him quite harmless as far as anti-war activism was concerned, since he didn’t do any, and I’d wager he’d done nothing wrong.”

    Yes Glenn, Jon is very correct on this point I assume.^^^ But I now feel now my VFP support is going to skyrocket. I’m not going to cower in fear. But it’s only fair and reasonable to assume the best thing for me and my family is for me to leave…Join groups that get targeted less in an individual way. And maybe meet some who are not all spineless, dumbed down “just enjoy yourself” people.

    I’ll take in Jon that you have my interests at heart in the things you said…But you don’t know what or how I have experienced things lately…Because some things I noted are an insult to reason and intelligence not to regard with extreme seriousness. And they are being considered, and I have good friends on my side…. I feel ok atm.

  • Fwl

    Though before I finish one more thought, and actually potentially on topic:

    Who allowed the thousands of refugees to come into Europe?

    I thought it odd.

    Look into that and see what you find. I don’t know what you will find but it is the horrific fact of the size of the refugee crisis in Europe, which may make bombing plausible in Syria. And in war its winning the PR at the start that is essential. If the consensus says its okay then its okay. That seems to be a feature of public international law in practice.

    I feel a bit sad about this. I am somewhat cold and was not moved to offer up refuge, but was thinking what is going on here. Why so many now? why indeed?

  • nigel

    Corbyn wants to put labour into a position where they can win the next election and to do that he has to beat the SNP in Scotland.”

    Hahahahahahaha!

    Oh Fred, you ARE a hoot!

    Tell me, were you ALWAYS so naive?

  • Fwl

    of course it could be that the refugees who have come from Syria could read what might be coming…I would like to know how and why there came to be so many in such a short time. Maybe that will be for historians in 50 years.

  • nigel

    Never ever again, after their vicious, treacherous and spite-filled, and yes, traitorous to Scotland’s people -conduct, could any residue of those backstabbing weeds take root again, composting, putrefaction won’t kill them, but a bonfire will.”

    WONDERFUL piece, Tony!

    Agree with every word!

    Bravo!

  • Jives

    Glenn 6.30pm,

    That’s complete guff and patronising guff too.

    What do you think spooks get up to? Why are their vast and increasing budgets necessary?

    Uk has 25% of the world’s CCTV yet only 4% of the global population.

    Its generally accepted that GCHQ intercept all comms and have done so for many years.

    Didnt you read about those agents who infiltrated law abiding groups for years,even going as far as to impregnate some of the women in the group?

    Years Glenn,years of surveillance and illegality.

    If you think the spooks dont have the resources to do a job on anyone for years on end,for any reason at all,then youre either being deliberately disingenuous or are staggeringly naive.

  • Republicofscotland

    “And on a point of information, no post-War Chancellor after Sir Stafford Cripps studied economics at university or was qualified in economic (except in terms of on-the-job learning).

    The same comment applies to most of the Financial Secretaries to the Treasury.

    And to most of the Economic Secretaries to the Treasury.

    And even to most of the Permanent Secretaries at the Treasury.”
    _________________

    Thank you Habb for adding gravitas to my 5.34pm comment.

  • Clydebuilt

    18.00 news Radio Scotland …Lead story John MacDonald’s speech, no mentionof the 1700 jobs loss at Redcar during bulletin

    18.00 news Radio 2…….lead Story ….Redcar

    18.30 ITV news. Lead story Redcar.

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    Glenn

    “He encouraged us. Which is a damn sight more than your motley collection of neo-fascist, Establishment operatives, money-grubbers, war-mongers, racists, lackeys, brown-shirts, false propagandists and sundry stooges like yourself ever achieved.”
    _______________

    That is the sort of post I would have expected from Fedup, Macky or Giyane but not from you – and therefore it disappoints.

    But on Benn Senior himself.

    Do you not think that his “encouragement” – and the subsequent lack of much to show for it – might have contributed to the sense of disillusionment with Labour?

    It could be argued that Benn Senior was as destructive to the good name of socalism as Enoch Powell was to the cause of racism.

    Luckily in the second case (and with apologies to our Transatlantic Friend who’s a bit of a fan of Enoch’s theories – as evidenced on a previous thread).

  • Peter Beswick

    Jives

    We have someone unravelling on here, Glen sticking the boot in telling him he is too high on self importance and that he’s nuts, hadacockonce (but lost it) confirming it and you saying he has every right to worry.

    Not really helping are you?

  • Republicofscotland

    “Seriously, a national fund to buy up cheap core materials and sources of energy, which are likely to be in the national interest is a good idea.”
    ______________________

    FWL, here’s Gideon’s idea of cheap energy.

    The present Tory government (like the Labour one before it) is fixated not just on nuclear power but on subsidising foreign competitors to provide it, to the detriment of local industry.

    The daftest project is Hinkley Point C in Somerset, which is slated to cost an insane £24.5 billion. To induce the state-owned French EDF utility to build and operate Hinkley Point C, Mr Osborne is offering to guarantee the company a £92.50p per megawatt hour for 35 years – a staggering double the current wholesale price.

    Now here’s the truly crazy thing: even with this gargantuan subsidy, EDF won’t go ahead unless somebody else comes up with the capital investment.

    Hence George Osborne’s desperate trip to China to persuade Chinese banks to fund this crazy project. How did he manage this? By offering to lend those Chinese concerns some of the cash – £2bn to be exact.

    So why not just fund it ourselves? But there’s more. Osborne has offered to let the Chinese build a reactor of their own design in the UK, doubtless also subsidised to the hilt with taxpayers’ money.

    In other words, the UK Treasury has just helped kick-start China’s advance into the global energy market just as it is abolishing subsidies for UK renewables.

    This guys the Chancer of the Exchequer, yet he probably couldn’t find his own arse with both hands, nevermind plan and execute a multi-billion pound deal.

    You’ll note he’s offering a double the price deal on electricity produced to entice EDF, who do you think will absorb the extra costs?

    Bingo the consumer will be hit with a hike in energy prices.

  • lysias

    Funny that I am accused of being a fan of Enoch Powell’s theories (when I merely mentioned them without saying whether or not I believed them, and in answer to a challenge from my accuser to elaborate on what I meant by saying there are other theories (about the death of Airey Neave), when my accuser has himself appealed to Powell as an authority:

    Habbabkuk (La Vita È Bella)
    4 May, 2015 – 8:56 pm
    That classical scholar Enoch Powell (1st class Honours in Greats from Oxford) was very much opposed to referenda, believing that they were incompatible with the notion of the sovereignty of parliament.

    But it’s true that he didn’t hold any “higher degrees” in the subject 🙂

    Of course, that’s assuming that it’s always the same person who uses my accuser’s handle. If that’s not true, it’s quite natural that this particular accuser should be unaware of what another user of his handle has said.

  • Habbbabkuk (scourge of the Original Trolls)

    John Spencer-Davis

    Apologies – I hadn’t seen your splendid rubbishing of “Salford Lad’s” piece of bollocks on the “Democratic” credentials of Assad Junior when I decided I had to correct the laddie.

    I liked your post better than I liked mine (grrrr).

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