The Sad Death of Jo Cox, and What is Terrorism? 480

Obviously the human tragedy of the death of Jo Cox, a mother of young children, is rightly uppermost in our mind after today’s appalling murder. There has been much random killing lately that appears broadly “terrorist” in nature, including in Orlando and Tel Aviv, and the human stories are always tragic; every violent death carries a dreadful freight of grief and loss.

But the Jo Cox death has caused immediate and fierce debate as to whether it was “terrorism” or not. This follows closely a similar and interesting debate over the Orlando killings. The questions raised over Omar Mateen, who undoubtedly had mental health issues, and was himself perhaps gay, complicated the question of his motivation, beyond his own declaration of loyalty to ISIS. It is to the credit of the US political establishment that their reaction reflected this complexity, Trump aside.

There is however a stark contrast in the UK. On the one hand we have the treatment of the Leyton tube knife attack and of the murder of Lee Rigby, both of which were unequivocally presented as Islamic terrorist incidents despite the obvious mental health problems of the perpetrators. On the other we have the media treatment of the Jo Cox murder, which there is a reluctance to call out as right wing terrorism. That the man is reported as yelling “Britain First” is apparently much less relevant to terrorism than if he had shouted “Allahu Akbar”.

The investigation is not being led by the counter-terrorism police. Simply put, if Tommy Mair were a Muslim, it would be.

Similarly, when Gregoire Moutaux was arrested ten days ago returning from Ukraine to France for Euro 2016 armed with five Kalashnikovs, two anti-tank grenade launchers, 5,000 rounds of ammunition, 100 detonators, and twelve kilos of high explosive, the media storm would still not have abated today if he had been a Muslim. There was more publicity for the Muslim who owned some fertiliser in a garage, or the Islamic “liquid bomb” plot which owned no detonators, explosives or suspicious liquids, or the Islamic “ricin plot” which owned no ricin.

It is a fact that the only terrorist arrested in Britain in this century who actually possessed a viable bomb and intended to use it was named Ryan McGee. He was a soldier, had a swastika on his wall and intended to kill Muslims. He was convicted – but not of terrorism with which, not being a Muslim, he was never charged. Many Muslims on the other hand have been jailed for terrorism for internet fantasy or boasting which had nowhere near reached the stage of preparation McGee had attained.

Terrorism has not officially been redefined as a crime of violence committed by a Muslim, but it might as well be. Just as the “Prevent strategy” has not officially been redefined as the control of Muslims not fully signed up to neo-liberalism, but might as well be.

Nobody has more consistently opposed than me the appalling use of racism to divert the attention of ordinary people from the cause of their poverty, which simply put is the vast wealth gap to the burgeoning stinking rich. I abhor UKIP, I abhor right wing politics.

I hold that the fashionable slogan “it is not racist to be concerned about immigration” is a lie.

Yet I do not accept in the least the argument put forward by Alex Massie in the Spectator that it is the rhetoric of Johnson, Hannan and Farage that caused the climate in which Jo Cox was murdered. Massie’s article is being much applauded by the Remain camp across political parties. Yet the only place where emotions have been whipped into a frenzy by the referendum campaign is precisely in the right wing Conservative milieu that Massie inhabits. Indeed Massie’s article is precisely proof of that very fact; it is a vicious and underhand blow in the bitter internecine battle within the Tory party. However much I dislike Johnson, Gove et al, to claim they inspired the murder of Jo Cox is wrong. They couldn’t inspire a souffle to rise, let alone the masses. The referendum campaign is more likely to induce a catatonic state than rage. What Massie is doing is giving vent to the vile hatred of Conservatives for each other that is rending the Tory Party apart.

It should be applauded because it is good to see Tories tearing each other apart, but not because Massie is right.

In a move that shows the fuddy-duddies of the Spectator haven’t actually quite understood the internet yet, they have taken down Massie’s initial article and replaced it with a version in which the names of all the Tories he accuses are removed and the new article blames only Farage. The link I give above is to the original captured by

It is sad that Jo Cox’s tragic death becomes discussed by everybody – myself included – in political terms so quickly. That does not mean that I, or even Mr Massie or the many mainstream media journalists involved, do not genuinely feel for her family. It seems to me very probable that Tommy Mair was motivated by hatred of immigrants when he reportedly shouted “Britain First” and killed Jo Cox. But that hatred of immigrants has been fostered over many years by the right wing in the UK – including virtually the entire Conservative Party, not just the Brexiteers. Stoking of racist emotion has been a deliberate long term ploy to provide a focus of blame for the victims in society of the consequences of neo-liberalism.

As I have argued so often, terrorism is unfortunately easy. Even a misfit like Thomas Mair can carry out a successful terrorist attack if they really want to do it. Almost everybody reading this blog could kill somebody tomorrow if they really wanted and were careless of their own life. That is why I have never believed the official nonsense about the thousands of totally unproductive Islamic terrorists we are harbouring, and the scores of plots the security services have brilliantly and secretly foiled. There is not more political death because fortunately the impulse to such killing is an extremely rare pathology.

Horrible things happen in a complicated and unfair world. Unless we see a truly revolutionary social change which fundamentally addresses the distribution of work, reward and wealth and the ownership of enterprises, societal coherence is going to continue to deteriorate. One brand of Tory versus another and Brexiteer versus Remainer are fluff, and not relevant to the current tragedy.

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480 thoughts on “The Sad Death of Jo Cox, and What is Terrorism?

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  • Ba'al Zevul

    Two things:
    At present it doesn’t look as if Mair was a ‘misfit’ except with Press prompting. Reportedly, although he had had mental problems, he was quite unusually helpful to his neighbours and didn’t stand out in any way. If that’s being a misfit, count the misfits where you live.

    And, whether she was a Blairite or not, Jo Cox was a Labour Friend of Palestine, and supported BDS. Which some may be tempted to think adds another dimension to this, though personally I don’t.

    RIP in any case.

    • Resident Dissident

      She was also a staunch opponent of the Assad monarchy – which of course makes a lot of sense given that regime’s treatment of Palestinian refugees. A politician with consistent principles who will be sorely missed.

      • brian

        ‘which of course makes a lot of sense given that regime’s treatment of Palestinian refugees;

        it was syria alone that gave palestinans refuge and the same rights as syrians..youre as ignorant as jo was:

        ‘The political and social status of Palestinians in Syria is the highest of any Arab country but the Syrian government doesn’t grant them citizenship or let them vote because it doesn’t want to dilute their right under international law, reaffirmed by numerous resolutions of the United Nations, to return to their homes and farms in Palestine.

        The fact that the Syrian government has been so adamant about this principle, is one of the main causes of the foreign aggression against the country (and in support of the State of Israel.) So the Syrian government pays a heavy price for its strong support of the Palestinian people.

        In turn, the vast majority of Palestinian refugees in Syria strongly support their government, even though many have been made refugees a second time by the invasion into their neighbourhoods of the terrorist mercenaries from over 80 countries.’

        • Geoffrey

          Well put. So her support for the Palestinians on the one hand and opposition to Assad would appear contradictory. Though I have no idea why that is relevant.

          • Suhayl Saadi

            No, it’s not at all contradictory. Middle East politics is complex. The Syrian regime supports its own clients in the Palestinian movement but just as often has fought against the PLO and other groupings. Palestinians in Syria also are subjected to the oppression of an authoritarian regime. One of my Palestinian friends was tortured as a teenager by the Syrian regime. There is little love lost. Being opposed to the Baathist regime does not equate to being in favour of Saudi/NATO-supported clerical fascists.

        • Resident Dissident

          So you are denying that the Assad regime bombed and starved Palestinian refugee camps in Syria? Even George Galloway managed to find enough moral honesty to criticise Assad’s bombing of the Latakia refugee camp. You can search for the video yourself – consider it a penance for believing all that globalresearch shit.

      • Beth

        Where did you get that information? I think she actually voted with the Tories to bomb Syria.
        In any case this is unbearably tragic for her family. RIP Jo Cox.

    • John Spencer-Davis

      If he was no misfit, what was he doing with a gun and a knife all handy and ready for use?

      • Ba'al Zevul

        If he’d been wandering through Batley with his gun in the waistband of his trousers, like Hamilton at Dunblane, he’d have been a misfit, like Hamilton. If he’d buggered little boys out of sight, he’d have been a pillar of the establishment like…(name withheld for legal reasons). Up to the time of the shooting, he wasn’t identifiable as a misfit. What I am deploring is the blanket characterisation of people who (unlike Cox, and incidentally Philip Green) aren’t motivated, vivacious, energetic and with a wide circle of equally scintillating friends, as misfits. Probably they are in the majority. And there is nothing to distinguish the majority from the odd one who goes nuts until the event.

    • Martinned

      Wow, that didn’t take long. A post that has no tangible connection to the Middle East whatsoever and literally the very first comment changes the topic back to Israel. Wouldn’t it be easier to take all your exciting feelings about Israel to some corner of the Internet specially set aside for that?

      • Laguerre

        You’re a hypocrite. You immediately joined in by insisting that Asad is a monarch, whatever that is supposed to mean.

        • Martinned

          That he inherited his “office” from his father, after his older brother’s death interupted his quiet life as a ophthalmologist?

          • laguerre

            You picked up on the minor point, as I would expect of someone who can’t defend himself on the major one.

      • Macky

        A Post addressing “what is terrorism” has “no tangible connection to the Middle East” ?!!

        Very tempting to renamed you as Mindless Martin ! 😀

  • Paula Varley

    I agree that horrible things happen – but I don’t think how complicated and unfair the world is has much to do with it. Fatal accidents – which may be the fault of no-one – happen. This is not the case here, but I don’t believe that societal coherence as you have described it would necessarily have saved this poor woman. As you mention earlier in this post the mental instability of the perpetrators of such awful crimes is likely to be a major factor in their actions, and it makes no difference if they are exhorting God or some deranged sense of nationalism. Their perceptions are distorted. They are able to understand that murder is wrong, but feel absolutely certain that the killing of an innocent and unsuspecting victim is morally justified. You are certainly right however that had this man been Muslim, his actions would have quickly been denounced as terrorism. I’m surprised the Spectator published that piece too.

  • Loony

    When referencing Ryan McGee as being the only terrorist with a viable bomb to have been arrested this centurt you have presumably forgotten about one Pavlo Lapshyn.

    Sadly Mr. Lapshyn is not wholly dissimilar from a number of his fellow countrymen. The kind of people that when in government it is official EU/US policy to support.

    • Resident Dissident

      I suspect you would say the same for a common and garden traffic accident.

      • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

        But I never have said that about any garden traffic accident, just plots of a serious political nature like this one which assassinated Michael Hastings for trying to expose former DCI General David Betrayus.

        It’s you who have nothing to say about such incidents.

        • Trowbridge H. Ford aka The Biscuit

          Oh, there was then the Mossad plot which took out Austrian right winger Jorg Haider in that accident proof Audi on that late night, and on that deserted road when he was trying to make a comeback

          No garden variety accident here.

  • deepgreenpuddock

    ‘May you live in interesting times’ -the Chinese curse- seems finally to be coming to pass. I prefer not to be biblically inclined but still, we reap what we sow.
    Toxic ideologies abound. I used to think, even quite recently, that these events were traceable, with cause and effect more or less forming a recognisable human shape-these events might include all the worst elements of human potential-greed, anger,envy, hubris,vengefulness, cruelty, impoverishment,- but still, even with such a coming together of negativity, there was some means of regressing or reverting to some way of being that transcended all that and is discernibly a human process.
    At the moment I sense that the capacity to withdraw into a simpler condition, to allow recovery, has been closed off-and we are being sucked into a vortex of chaos of competing thinking-some ideological, but most of it just undifferentiable stuff. It is like the abandonment of shape.
    Early reports suggest an individual who is not a plotter, a schemer, a planner or an ideologue. An ideologue suggests some kind of purpose or considered response. This just seems like a shriek of anguish- a descent into some grim abyss of fury and reaction to pressures exerted all around us. There is some sense that what we have unleashed is permission to express our loathing and hatred. It is a regression of adults into the furies of the unmodified mind of child in a tantrum.
    That is what I meant at the start with the Chinese curse-it is as if it comes true and things become ‘interesting’ when chaos begins to emerge from the cacophony of influences.

  • Techno

    I wonder if it will have made a lot of her constituents aware that they voted for somebody who went to Cambridge and lived in a houseboat on the Thames? A long way from the true Labour tradition that they think they are voting for.

      • Techno

        Reading lots of complicated meaning into a random attack by a mentally ill person is pathetic. Holding candlelit vigils Lady Diana style is pathetic.

        • lysias

          You must also believe the story that John Kennedy was assassinated for no clear reason by the lone nut and misfit Oswald.

    • shelpot

      Are you aware of the fact Jo Cox was the first person in her family to attend university and spent her summers working in a toothpaste factory along with her father who was also employed there. You are insinuating she was born with a silver spoon and that is simply not true. She comes from a working class family, you do not automatically lose your right to be a member of the labour party because of wealth. After all, are the many Labour donors not wealthy??

      She came from a poor family and her high level of intellect allowed her to achieve things unimaginable to many but that doesn’t mean her core values weren’t “Labour”.

    • hairyman

      What the utter fuck? If you don’t have any empathy or decency at least try and pretend.

    • brian

      she was a friend of palestine but an enemy of syria..and thus had alligned with israel, which also hates syria…thus no real friend of palestine

      • Resident Dissident

        You might want to think about the logic of this. X was a supporter of Chelsea but hated Arsenal and therefore had aligned with Spurs fans who also hated Arsenal – and thus was not a real supporter of Chelsea. Complete garbage don’t you think!

  • Chris

    Of course people associate Islam with terrorism. Why wouldn’t they? Obviously most Muslims aren’t terrorists, but after 9/11, Madrid, 7/7, Mumbai, Paris (twice), Brussels etc etc it’s inevitable many people will associate them. That’ll only stop when the attacks stop.

    • michael norton

      Well, I do not know what the answer is, I’m not sure I know what the question is.

      It is ghastly that two young children will have to grow up without a mother.

      However, M.P.’s should not secrete themselves from their constituents.

    • Anony

      Just like the 1916 ‘plot’, by Alice Wheeldon to kill the Prime Minister Lloyd George, shaped public opinion at the time.

      80 years later it was revealed to have been cooked up by the security services of the day.

    • John Goss

      Typical MSM cant to drum up racism.

      Knowing how our media perpetually lie to us with tragedies probably started by them I am not out of sync with the comment by Anony. The security services are not here to keep us all safe. They are here to perpetuate the status quo. And they use whatever means they consider appropriate.

  • Pete Heywòod

    Racism is never far below the surface in any society and the referendum has descended into an ugly farce and we are in dangerous territory. In what other profession would people be able to lie and twist the truth and still be viewed as professional people? All politicians are not evil, but quite a few of them are at least close to the line. On what basis are the public voting and how can an outcome based on deceit and prejudice be legitimate? We have been taught from childhood that we British are somehow superior. That is the root of our institutionalised racism. We may be nice people but don’t be fooled into thinking that ‘it’ can’t happen here.

    A can of worms has been opened and the worms appear to be well fed.

  • Krief

    Something I’m missing here. My understanding is that neo-liberals LIKE lots of immigration because it makes for cheaper labour.

    And that’s why the bottom-end of the workforce in the UK DON’T like immigration, because theirs are the first jobs to be taken.

    I don’t see where the racism is in either of those positions.

    • craig Post author

      It lies in a number of things, not least the deliberate misrepresentation of an economy as a thing of fixed size.

      • Krief

        You’re going to fast for me there, I can’t join the dots between a fixed-size economy and racism.

        I’ll try though:
        – The economy isn’t fixed-size
        – Thus immigration doesn’t cause unemployment
        – Thus if you say immigration does cause unemployment, it’s because you’re racist?

        So why is there unemployment, if the economy isn’t fixed size? Because of neo-liberals? But neo-liberals doing what?

      • Loony

        There is no shortage of misrepresentations. One of the most bizarre being the conflation of racism with the laws of math.

        Whilst the economy is not of fixed size, it has ultimate limits. The late Professor Albert Bartlett was clear in his view: “The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function.”

        This led Bartlett to pose the question: “Can you think of any problem in any area of human endeavor on any scale, from microscopic to global, whose long-term solution is in any demonstrable way aided, assisted, or advanced by further increases in population, locally, nationally, or globally?”

        To my knowledge this question has never been satisfactorily answered. Absent a comprehensive answer to this question then concern regarding immigration is demonstrably not racist.

        Genuine racists are probably necessary for the continuation of current policy. Where they exist in too few numbers then it is necessary for the “liberal” to create them. It is only by developing a moral imperative to confront racists that the proponents of current policy are able to avoid addressing themselves to the problems set out by Professor Bartlett.

      • Krief

        PS: sorry if it seems like I’m trolling, but I genuinely want to understand your reasoning. I totally believe in your integrity, but in some of your posts, you do seem to paint ‘neo-liberals’ as the catch-all bogeyman. In a way that (from where I’m looking) doesn’t look much different to how you are accusing ‘racists’ of painting immigration.

        I think there are legitimate complaints from people who SEE their jobs being taken by cheaper imported labour (even whiter-than-white Eastern Europeans – is that racist too?). I also think there are legitimate fears of a mass influx of Muslims. Can you honestly say that Muslims would vote against Sharia law because it’s against their religion?

      • Ba'al Zevul

        I’m damned if I see racism in that. Enlightened self-interest is what I’d call it. And the perception that we – those already here, whatever their race or whatever – need to prioritise our own enormous problems over those of the rest of the world.

        The economy’s size is constrained, though. As we saw in 2008. Still and all, we’re not really talking about the UK economy, but the global one, aren’t we? If you buy that, you’re buying the progressive infiltration of local economies by practices designed to maximise profit (and ‘grow’ the ‘economy’) by any means possible. Cheap migrant labour is a given, as is automation – and both are beginning to affect middle-class employment prospects. Take care what you wish for.

        I think you may subscribe to the myth that the size of the economy determines the wellbeing of its citizens, too. Given the inequality of the distribution of wealth as it stands, that’s a very shaky assumption

          • fedup

            A day late and penny short mate, the robots are already doing that and moreover calling you to sell stuff too! That is in addition to screening your voice for various reasons included to determine if you are lying or not, when it comes to the insurance companies, as and when you wish to register a claim.

            You have no idea how far Artificial Intelligence and automation have been wreaking havoc without any oversight or legislation, the little nerds and their rich sponsors are running a riot in the labs. The fact that Pentagon now is contracting “self-aware” autonomous battlefield robots means these little gems will be killing the next lot of Muslims for years to come and without any witnesses to squeal or PT suffering zombies giving the game away.

            But, take heart because there are friendlier ones too as the “self-aware” autonomous riot control robots will only boil the sweat under skin of the standard issue demonstrator/malcontent/rioter/disobedient misfits or induce an involuntary muscle spasm to actuate loss of bowel and bladder control, along with carrying/being equipped the usual chemical stuff tear gas, pepper gas etc. and other “none lethal”* measures

            * None lethal means that up to seventeen percent fatalities are built in and acceptable tolerance.

      • Eric Smiff

        Big business, goverments and high earners love immigration. Poor workers don’t. Calling them racist is truly vile.

        Budget surplus hopes rely on ‘high level of net migration to UK’

        Office for Budget Responsibility analysis indicates chancellor’s hopes of achieving surplus appear at odds with policy of reducing net migration

        “Higher inward net migration is generally positive for the public finances,” Chote said, while presenting the OBR’s budget analysis “because inward migrants are more likely to be of working age than the native population … We estimate that the high migration variant would increase the budget surplus by about £4.5bn by 2019-20, while the low migration variant would reduce it by the same amount. This is not to suggest that we recommend any particular level of migration or that the government could not offset different outcomes with tax and benefit changes.” The assumption that high levels of net migration have a positive impact on the British economy rests on the basis that migrants of working-age pay more tax and receive fewer benefits.

      • Geoffrey

        Something should be done to stop Brits from going to Spain and Portugal,in particular, living in their own ghettos,making no attempt to assimilate or even learn the language,ruining the food,making a lot of noise and generally polluting the area.

      • Richard

        At this stage, I don’t accept that it is a lie to say that it isn’t racism to be anti-immigration. I would need to be convinced, but simply asserting it doesn’t cut much ice.

        I do suggest, however, that the pro-immigration lobby are disingenuous. Firstly they fail to discriminate between immigration, and mass, non-selective immigration preferring to lump the two together as if they are the same thing. They also lump it in with responsibility to refugees, whereas in fact, at least since Blair it hasn’t actually been a good time to be a genuine refugee. Just in case that wasn’t enough, they like to chuck in the term “blaming immigrants” whenever they can, when I’ve never heard anybody blame immigrants for anything.**

        Immigration has always happened. Mass, non-selective immigration is a government policy; it doesn’t happen unless the people in power create the conditions for it to occur. And like any other policy of the government it is open to legitimate criticism. Chucking about terms like ‘racism’, ‘blaming immigrants’ and ‘xenophobia’ is an attempt to shut down that legitimate criticism. That attempt has – bizarrely, since it is so grossly dishonest – been largely successful, but is becoming increasingly less so, especially among the most immediate victims of mass immigration who the Labour Party treats with contempt thinking, I assume, (as Blow-job Bill stated explicitly about Democratic voters) that they have nowhere else to go.

        Mass, non-selective immigration (partly, I suspect in order to gerrymander the electorate) isn’t just bad management, it is perverse management. Much of its justification is delivered in terms of the needs of an economic model which is predicated on massive over-consumption financed by debt. That might have been the future in 1830. Arguably it could have been the future in 1750 as the steam age was starting to get going. It isn’t the future now. It will collapse or largely shut down at some point and our descendants will discover that we have prepared them and the country for the wrong future.

        Mass, non-selective immigration is also an environmental disaster in the making and for that and other reasons it is quite surreal to see members of the Green Party supporting it.

        Mass immigration doesn’t cause unemployment, though it must help to perpetuate unemployment which is already present. The hard-working folk in South Wales aren’t being turfed out and replaced with cheaper immigrants. Their jobs are in danger of disappearing for reasons unconnected with mass immigration and many other peoples’ jobs have disappeared in the same way. However, running a policy of mass immigration concurrently with mass unemployment beggars belief. Would anybody – could anybody – who had just been parachuted into the place and who hadn’t been de-sensitised to logic over many years by constant exposure to Westminster’s P.R.-schooled parasites and their media lackeys possibly think that it made any sense at all?

        By the way, let’s take it as a given that I am totally obsessed with the colour of peoples’ skins or with the shape of their eyes. Let’s imagine that I’m reaching up with one hand to type while foaming at the mouth and chomping the carpet because I’m fearful of ‘the other’, terrified of difference, get a fit of the screaming ab-dabs at the sound of a non-British accent. It saves other people the trouble and were they able to provide constructive responses to the legitimate criticisms of mass immigration they would have done so from the start. They don’t and presumably that is because they can’t.

        ** Needless to say they keep getting away with it. It really is possible to fool some of the people all of the time. A few days ago I saw some duplicitous airhead on a panel say something about Brexit playing into the hands of Putin! Predictably a section of the audience applauded enthusiastically. Neither the duplicitous airhead nor her admirers had noticed that Hollande had said something about Brexit, Mutti has stuck her oar in and Obama got up on his hind legs and threatened us with economic warfare if we don’t do what we’re told. Putin hasn’t said anything. Truth – even obvious truth – means absolutely nothing to these people.

    • George

      The racism may be seen as a “helpful bonus” since it divides people i.e. divide and rule.

    • michael norton

      The ELITE want cheap gardeners, cheap people to look after their golden offspring, cheap window cleaners, cheap plumbers,
      cheap kitchen fitters and so on. They’d like there drives tarmacked/concreted cash-in-the-hand
      they do not want to pay much tax to support services for ordinary British hard working people, they want to live like lords,
      they are not concerned about the worries of the lower orders.
      They’d like us to stay in the hated E.U.
      it suits the rich.

      • Martinned

        It suits everybody. That’s the whole point of increasing the size of the pie/raising the tide to lift all ships/insert metaphor here.

    • tm

      No, neo-liberals like freedom of movement of capital. They like their serfs to stay still so that they can treat them however they please. Open borders for trade, closed borders for serfs. Easy.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        Sadly, no.
        (Comment by Alex Tabarrok, Professor of Economics, George Mason University)

        Restrictions on the free flow of people, however, are by far the costliest barrier to trade–far costlier than all the restrictions on trade in goods that we have today. A modest increase in immigration levels from low-income countries—just 5% of the people now living there—would expand the world economy by several trillion dollars every year. Yes, trillion

        • mog

          Although it moust be admitted that capital does and has long been much freer to move around the globe than people.

          If people genuinely were able to migrate as freely as capital (in the fullest sense, i.e. without having to face hatred or discrimination, with no barriers of language etc. in their destinations) then they would surely move to where most of the money and goods end up : in the West.

          I am one of those who have advocated a more equitable redistribution of capital rather than an obssession with excessive unnecessary free trade.
          It’s one world and all that.

          • fedup

            You are a namby pamby liberal mog!!!

            The simple fact is whence sex education becomes mandatory for the infants/juniors to be educated properly and not to be left to learn in the school of bicycle shed (oh the quint old days). However the same bunch of learned and sex educated future citizens then are left to be politically educated by Murdoch et al thorough the Sun/Express/Metro/Standard/Telegraph/…… you then get the utter moronic shite getting spewed without any conscious understanding of the implications of the unconscious drivel forwarded as the “thought out” own pontifications of the “contributors”!

            Fact that “Liberalisation of economies” is a shorthand for transference of the natural and god given wealth of the nations into the ownership of a few crooks and banksters based on their own self-devised Ponzi schemes. This in return leading to higher levels of unemployment, destitution, and hardship for the masses whom would then be willing to sell their grand mothers for pennies in the pound/dollar/dinar/etc. never mind their labour, toil and sweat.

            The inequality of the wealth then is made more tolerable by the introduction of the Poor law 1601, later the poor act of 1834 all in the way of getting the poor organised and exploiting the crap out of them even better and more efficiently.

            Needless to point out that ill educated, politically illiterate morons, whom have their “thoughts” already thought out for them by the Oligarch Owned Media, verily believe that “immigrants” shorthand for gypsies/Muslims/untermensch are queuing up in their hoards to invade our fair lands and rape and sully our fair English roses/German maidens/etc. *

            Although fact that for the last two decades the various countries in those far flung lands have been bomb the shit out of and the inhabitants thereof have been made into nomads and refugees, that are roaming the neighbouring countries that are in turn subject to “liberalisation” that is if these have supine governments, or sanctions; economic or political for the others that have a disagreeable and vociferously defiant governments, or pretty much the attacks covert or overt for those “regimes” are that are pencilled for change; we came we saw he died hahahahah**

            Now you see why we are swamped under the immigrants who are taking our jobs, women, and are given cars and mobile phones on the free and on benefits!!!!! (pathetic misanthropy disguised as politics).

            * there is a report no less 106 pages that has been investigating the roots of the Muslim hatred that is evidently the corner stone of the zionist policies as in the case of the “defence of the realm” policy that then became to be the de facto neoliberal policy as practised by the remaining untethered super bully the US that is currently engaged in its’ version of the hundred years war.

            ** dependent on the ease of sequestration of the said countries wealth directly and without much fuss, playing the footsie game and going through the dance of “economic liberalisation” lark.

          • Ba'al Zevul

            Yup, pretty well agree. Though the principle of free movement of labour, to find the least-unionised, cheapest workforce, has been fundamental to the US economy for decades, and the Schengen agreement in the EU also contradicts the notion of a general reluctance to adopt free labour movement. Outsourcing production may or may not contribute to this – it’s not without an effect. For instance China’s economic colonialisation of Africa has sent 3M Chinese to the continent in recent years.

        • Geoffrey

          And thereby bringing the extinction of the human race as we know it much nearer. (He forgot to add)

  • Simon

    Gregoire who ? Google turns up no results for Gregoire Murtaux. Craig are you breaking a story here?

  • Jay

    “I hold that the fashionable slogan “it is not racist to be concerned about immigration” is a lie.”

    As is- “it’s racist to be a nationalist” although concerns for national as well as international environmental issues hold little meme.
    So increase in growth and expenditure seem the current trend. Of which dissent from leaves no room for voice in a democratic society where majority opinion can be fair to idiotic due to cultural representation.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    I am minded to ask, is there a point at which being “concerned about immigration” ceases to be racist and begins to be a legitimate enquiry? There are millions of displaced persons and refugees in the Middle East and elsewhere, I understand, a situation for which the UK Government bears a considerable share of responsibility. Presumably we would be unable to take them all, by ourselves. So, as a matter of logic, there must inevitably be a point at which immigration exceeds emigration by so much that it becomes a legitimate problem. That point may be ten years off. I’ve no idea. But I assume that immigration cannot increase until we have standing room only, like a lot of penguins. I would be interested to hear where Craig would place that point, if that makes any sense.

  • Anon1

    One of the causes of wealth inequality is the import of cheap labour. Why pay a decent wage to a decorator with a family and mortgage to pay when you can use a gang of Eastern Europeans on £60 for a 12-hour day? Mass immigration of cheap labour drives down wages and increases pressure on public services. Elitist supporters of mass-immigration do not have to worry about that – it advantages them.

    So it is not racist to be concerned about mass-immigration, no matter how many times you keep saying it is. You cannot go on importing in net terms almost the equivalent of a city the size of Bristol every year and expect there to be no backlash against it from ordinary working people.

    That you characterize those people as “racist” once again shows you to be in line with establishment attitudes and part of what people are signalling their opposition to when they vote Leave next week is exactly the kind of sneering condescension of those such as yourself who have never done a day’s work in the real world in their lives.

    • John Goss

      “But that hatred of immigrants has been fostered over many years by the right wing in the UK . . .”

      On this blog too by people like you.

      • Anon1

        The immigrants are only doing what I would do in their situation. The responsibility for flooding the country with more than the entire population of the county of Northumberland every year lies with the political elites and corporate interests that you claim to be opposed to.

        • John Goss

          Another comment purporting to support immigration from someone with a record for opposing it with the emotive addendum “flooding the country with the entire population of the county of Northumberland every year”. I wonder where you got that from. Anyway it is a lie as usual designed to mislead and foster hatred for immigrants. You have as much chance of cleansing yourself from a reputation as impregnated with bigotry as Lady Macbeth had of cleansing her murderous past. Sorry, I write it as I see it.

          • Ba'al Zevul

            The responsibility for flooding the country with more than the entire population of the county of Northumberland every year lies with the political elites and corporate interests that you claim to be opposed to

            .Sorry, John. That was a valid point IMO, and I don’t often agree with Anon. Play the ball, not the man, please.

          • John Goss

            But it isn’t Ba’al. There is nothing to corroborate it. There are as many people leaving the UK as there are entering it. See anybody can make up something to suit their case. Anon1 knows what I think about his bigotry. He has been weighed in the balances and found wanting.

          • Anon1

            Net migration to the UK (2015) – 330,000 (2nd highest on record).

            Population of Northumberland (2011 Census) – 316,000.

          • Loony

            John Goss In this world there are estimated to be 2.8 billion people who live on less than $2/day, of these about 1 billion are illiterate.

            Take a look at the benefits that are provided by European welfare states and ask yourself how many of these 2.8 billion people would be economically advantaged by NOT seeking to move to Europe.

            Do you think that Europe should import 2.8 billion people? If so exactly how is Europe going to finance looking after these people? Given that 1 billion of them are illiterate they are not likely to be economically productive.

            If 2.8 billion is too many for your liking then on what basis are you going to determine who gets to come and who is forced to stay. Do you have in mind a rational system based on principles of fairness and equality of opportunity, and if so how is this system going to be administered?

          • glenn_uk

            John Goss: “There are as many people leaving the UK as there are entering it.”

            Would you mind saying where you got this “fact”? Because a quick search on “UK net migration” returned this:

            UK net migration hits record high – BBC News:

            Net migration soars over 200,000 despite David Cameron’s… :


            Et cetera.

          • Ba'al Zevul

            Thesis: Immigration (=’a flexible workforce’) is a deliberate means to maximise corporate profit .There’s plenty of supporting opinion (I’ve already cited one or two views here and elsewhere on the blog), it makes reasonable sense, and you can’t disprove it.

            Antithesis: It isn’t. You can’t disprove that, either. But given that it is cited as an economic necessity, we have to ask, qui bono?. Do we really employ Poles and Lithuanians because our people won’t do the work? Or because they won’t do it for the same money Or because the (probably offshore) agribusiness owning the cabbages can’t be arsed training an indigenous workforce? And who’s first on the phone to their MP/lobbyist if the subjects of living wages* and apprenticeships come up?

            *not even ‘fair’ wages, please note.

          • Martinned

            @Ba’al: don’t be silly. The Mike Ashleys of this world are very much the exception among the British billionaire-class these days. The vast majority of them made/make their money with things that don’t involve hiring cheap immigrant labour, like finance & banking. Companies that employ cheap immigrant labour in large numbers, like cleaning companies, are not that big/influential nor owned by anyone big or influential.

          • John Goss


            You should have read the sentence following the one you quoted. “There are as many people leaving the UK as there are entering it. See anybody can make up something to suit their case.” It was in response to Anon1’s unsubstantiated claim about the population of Northumberland.

          • glenn_uk

            John – I do apologise, that was extremely lazy of me, and I didn’t read what you said properly before responding. Thank you for your patient and gentle explanation of the error I made. You are a gentleman, sir.

    • nevermind

      far from it Anon, what you perceive as cheap labour is in effect working for the minimum wage. That you can’t get our little darlings out of bed in the morning is not the fault of the eastern European citizens.

      Britain first is obviously an organisation that should be investigated, is most likely already under observation. I don’t buy that this is another case of a ‘mad man’ murdering an innocent person. How come that people with ‘mental instabilities’ can lay their hands on arms?
      This is another indication that terror can be home grown if you let it fester, and Europe is infested with right wing organisations. I dare say that some of these enjoy the support of Government backed agencies and security services, again.

      The Nationalsocialist Underground in Germany has murdered ten people, and the authorities dragging their feet to prosecute, because they are involved in some way.
      In France Marie Le Pen enjoys the best of support and we are sleepwalking into a new awakening of the rabid right.

      @ Craig, did you see my link to the EDP article and Vicky Hayes, sorry for O/T, its on the previous thread linking to your article in the Indy? btw. well done .

      • John Goss

        I agree largely with your comment. Britain First, last time I looked at their Facebook page, contains a lot of extreme right-wing Tories including people in a high position. I tried leaving a comment but it vanished as soon as it appeared. They do not believe in free speech. They are racists through and through, pretending like Nigel Farage, to reflect public opinion.

        • John Goss

          Here is their facebook page. Full of speeches and comments by people like Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson.

          This assassination is going to kill the Brexit campaign (which is a good thing). The only argument I can think of for exiting is based on how Julian Assange has been let down by Europe with the diabolical and political issue of that EAW that enabled the Yanks to pressure Europe into persecuting Assange. My view is that we should stay and fight from within to change what is wrong with this integration of countries.

          Condolences to the Jo Cox family and friends who have lost someone dear to them in the most tragic of circumstances. I am concerned for Jeremy Corbyn and other decent MPs because some right-wing nutters will stop at nothing to make sure there is no opposition to their exploitation of the masses (who often do not know they are being exploited). Never forget how warmonger Blair set up the Hutton Inquiry (whitewash) to deal with Dr David Kelly’s deathn when by law it was the duty of a coroner. These evil people will stop at nothing.

          • glenn_uk

            With a layout as ambiguously threaded as posts are here, these days, you need to indicate to whom your reply was intended.

            If it was John Goss, I’d really like him to state where he got his “fact” from that net migration is actually zero in the UK.

          • John Goss


            You should have read the sentence following the one you quoted. “There are as many people leaving the UK as there are entering it. See anybody can make up something to suit their case.” It was in response to Anon1’s unsubstantiated claim about the population of Northumberland.

            Michael Norton appears to be a man of few words. If his statement above is anything to go by might I suggest he reduce them.

          • glenn_uk

            Yup, got it John – thank you again. Repeating it here for the record. You show true class in not crowing about the mistake of another, but instead just pointing it out with courtesy.

      • Anon1

        ‘Britain First’ is almost a non-entity, but it gives the little darlings of the left something to wet their beds over and something for the proponents of unlimited mass-immigration to point their fingers at.

        The simple truth is that this is a tolerant country that does not go for extremes at the ballot box. But if a largely unaccountable and unelected elite continues to flood the country with immigrants against the wishes of the people then there will be a backlash. This is not indicative of a rise in racism or the far-right. It is ordinary, tolerant people letting the established parties know that they have had enough.

        In any case I don’t think ‘Britain First’ can be held responsible for the actions of this schizophrenic man. It is not even clear what his motivations were, with only one witness claiming to have heard him shout ‘Britain First’. Whether you can safely attribute rational motivation to a man with schizophrenia is another matter.

        • John Goss

          Anon1, tolerant people are not bigots.

          “In any case I don’t think ‘Britain First’ can be held responsible for the actions of this schizophrenic man.”

          It seems you purport to have qualifications in psychiatry, schizophrenia in particular, by the tone of your comment. Or is this just another group of people you have lumped together that don’t fit your worldview of normal. It puzzles me that you might think you are normal, whatever normal is. Schizophrenia is an illness that affects sufferers in diverse ways. Twice in one paragraph you mention this illness, once as an adjective once as a noun. You must be an expert. Britain First, like you, is racist in nature. No wonder you defend it! Racism, to my mind, is one of the worst illnesses in society, a million times worse than schizophrenia.

      • Loony

        @nevermind. Maybe you should get out more. There is no shortage of people in the UK working for a lot less than the minimum wage. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence and there is also the evidence given to Parliament by Mike Ashley. Going back a bit further not even the media could avoid reporting on the deaths of Chinese cockle pickers in Morecombe Bay. These people were effectively working as slaves.

        Take a walk around any large English town and it will not take long to stumble across some ghetto where the native English spend their days filling their gardens with rubbish, drinking high strength alcohol and sending text message death threats to each other. Just walk on a while and you will find another ghetto but this time filled with immigrants who no-one wants anymore than they want the unwashed indigenous people. Go and look at these people, there are many of them and ask yourself what kind of work can these people possibly do. They have been force fed anti depressants, alcohol, drugs, religion and all the rest precisely so as to make them incapable of work.

        Just because they are incapable of work does not mean that they have no economic function. Rather they serve a dual economic function. They are used as a conduit through which to transfer public funds to a private elite. They also form a great mass of unwanted surplus labor which facilitates driving wage rates ever lower.

        Meanwhile the bourgeois clerks who bear no guilt deny their role in this and salve their consciences by retreating into a fantasy world of minimum wage legislation.

        • nevermind

          sorry loony I don’t share your pessimism, and I’m seeing it alright, those gang masters don’t wake you up, you have to be at a certain point, in time, not something many people understand, it will take a crash course of no benefit if they can’t hack it. If they do want to work they have to do the same work as those immigrants do, all day long.

          No vegetable crop waits for an advert in the job-centre to have success and finally come up with a couple of people who want to work, but can’t hack it.
          That’s the story from the Fenlands were farmers can’t do without them, regardless what happens in Lincoln, Peterborough or Kings Lynns DWP offices.
          I can’t see why immigration and emigration is such a great divider when our workforce is up to the same standards others are in Europe. If our education system is not up to it due to constant party political self aggrandisements, chopping and changing non stop until teachers had enough and pupils fail to get a proper education, at all levels.

          Most of the reasons why immigrants are wanted is because they are better educated in IT, or better agricultural workers than most, for example, I myself could not keep up with the speed of some Roma who started at the same time than me, but were some 20 yards ahead of me all day long, they could pick grapes faster than anyone.

          Who designed the policies that housed poor people in ghettos, who is monitoring Osborne’s wet dream of £8.80 minimum wage, or is that maximum?
          This country has been mismanaged by continued party political half wits and to say that there is anything to be gained preferring one fool before the other would be a lie. So, what will happen at the next GE? exactly the same, same as it ever was, of what masochistic pleasure to do it all again.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        That you can’t get our little darlings out of bed in the morning is not the fault of the eastern European citizens.
        Can’t disagree fundamentally with that, Nevermind. But is the cure to import labour, or to re-educate our own society? One way of going about which might be to recognise that getting up before dawn on a cold and wet morning in order to work in a field all day, producing a necessity, might just be worth a little more than selling electronic gimmicks in a heated store with agreeable working conditions?

  • Loony

    It is certainly true that “Unless we see a truly revolutionary social change which fundamentally addresses the distribution of work, reward and wealth and the ownership of enterprises, societal coherence is going to continue to deteriorate.”

    The leap of logic necessary to get from that statement to an instant dismissal of the relevance of the EU referendum is extraordinary. If “Logic leaping” were an Olympic sport you would be assured of a Gold Medal.

    Take the latest Bank of Greece report:

    Infant Mortality up by 50% since 2008
    24% Increase in chronic diseases since 2008
    100% increase in adult rates of diagnosed depression since 2008 – with a consequent increase in the suicide rate
    Percentage of low weight births (below 2,5kg) up by 19%

    There is more, much more, and for so long as Greece is held captive by the EU these problems can only get worse. It is not just Greece it is all of southern Europe. The policies of the EU are killing Europeans.

    For a variety of reasons those in Southern Europe are not currently able to extract themselves from their predicament. The British have an opportunity to act, and to act for the good of both themselves and for all of Europe.

    The decision shortly to be taken by the British is of central relevance to the current tragedy and is only tangentially connected to Tory party infighting.

    • michael norton

      Air pollution

      It has recently been said that air pollution in England is the direct or indirect cause of one third of stokes.
      We are being relentlessly told we need to expand Heathrow because it is good for the movement of people and good for the economy
      however it is not good for the environment nor is it good for our health.
      Surely our health, the right not to dies from air pollution should be of legitimate concern?

      How many more people can we fit into this island, another 25 million?
      Every extra person will increase the problems of air pollution.

      And do not think that it is only people shifting from one part of the Earth to another.
      If these people come from say Africa, another will straight away be born to take his place.
      For the benefit of all, mass movements of people have to be stopped, otherwise the population of the World will keep on rises relentlessly untill we kill each other to make room
      as happened a few years ago in Rwanda, is that what we want in Europe?

      • Martinned

        How many more people can we fit into this island, another 25 million?

        Why not. If the UK had the same population density as my country, it’d have 100 million inhabitants. The problem isn’t finding room for them, but building them houses, schools, etc. Since those things take time, immigration works better if it doesn’t occur too quickly. But that’s not the same thing as saying the UK is ever “full”.

        • Loony

          That is an interesting but irrelevant observation. The quantum of the problem is around 2.8 billion, of which 1 billion are illiterate.

          • Martinned

            That too could be handled by a combination of will, money, and European collaboration. But it would be a bumby ride, and in any event it would probably be better to help developing nations develop their own economies, rather than having their inhabitants move here. (Give a man a fishing pole, etc.)

          • Loony

            Martinned – Even in a world infected by trolls offering all kinds of inflammatory and diversionary remarks your comment stands alone in terms of its sheer idiocy infused with the arrogance of ignorance.

            Are you seriously suggesting that Europe is capable of importing 2.8 billion people without suffering fatal consequences. I do not normally favor compulsion, but you should be forced to undertake study of the exponential function. If, after that, your views remain the same, you should probably be locked safely away for the benefit of all humanity.

          • Martinned

            If, over something like a 50 year period, 2.8 billion people moved to Europe, there would be much unpleasantness, but we’d survive. Assuming – and that’s a big if, I realise – that the whole thing was vaguely well-managed. This assumes a high degree of planning and advance notice, but yes. From an economic point of view, it would be similar – though bigger – than post-war reconstruction. Lots of building to do, and lots of jobs created building, or working for people who build things, or making inputs for people who build things, etc. Yet more jobs feeding the new and old inhabitants of the continent, which would involve creating the trading infrastructure to annually (and indefinitely) import large quantities of food, teaching the immigrants so that they (and their children) would be able to participate fully in the economy and in society, and so on, and so forth.

          • glenn_uk

            Martinned: Just out of interest, what do you think the sustainable carrying capacity of this planet might be? Infinite?

          • Martinned

            We couldn’t put 2.8 billion people in Europe and then populate the rest of the planet at the same density, if that’s what you mean. Having Europe at city-state density means setting a side a big chunk of the rest of the planet for producing food. But I think we could grow a lot more food per area set aside for it than we currently do, if we were sufficiently motivated (i.e. willing to pay a sufficiently high price for the resulting food).

            At current levels of the world population, I don’t think it’s very useful to speculate about how many people fit on our world. Innovation has outpaced Malthus for the last 150 years, and I see no reason to assume that it won’t continue to do so until we reach any peak that follows from current trends. (E.g. 11 billion in 2050 is a lot, but I see no reason to believe it’s too much, at least not in the technical/engineering sense.)

          • glenn_uk

            OK, thanks for your answer – but do you think that would be a good thing? Should we turn the remainder of the planet over for food production for the 11 Billion you mention, or wouldn’t we be better off with a vastly smaller population?

            Bear in mind each of the 11 billion would be consuming energy and material resources, food, water, and generating vast amounts of waste.

    • Martinned

      This Greece thing continues to amaze me. If you don’t pay your mortgage the bank owns your house. How is that even remotely the same thing as some undemocratic overthrow of the government? No one made them borrow that money.

      • Loony

        With regard to infant mortality rates and the problems associated with low birth rates it is difficult to see how the individuals affected could have borrowed any money.

        So far as I am aware Goldman Sachs have yet to introduce a debt product for the unborn. I could be wrong of course

        • Martinned

          Greece, the country, borrowed money, and they had to cut the budget on pretty much everything, including health care, to keep up with the car payments. That may or may not be fair to the unborn, but it is hardly the creditor nations’ fault.

          • Macky

            Your expertise on Greece is about as impressive as your expertise on Law ! 😀

          • Loony

            That is an interesting comment and I have little doubt that many people will agree with you.

            Just for clarity: The Greek debt crisis is now so severe that infant mortality is rising as is the incidence of low weight births. You are not sure as to the degree of culpability that is to be attached to the unborn. You are however very certain that no responsibility should be borne by the lenders.

            General Franco once said he was prepared to kill half of Spain in order to gain control of the other half – pretty liberal compared to blaming infant mortality on the infants themselves. Still, looking on the bright side,at least they will not grow up to express a contrary view.

          • Martinned

            @Macky: I assume that was aimed at me?

            Anyway, as far as I can tell those blogs don’t so much seek to add to anyone’s understanding of anything, but rather to say “IT’S NOT FAIR” in a really slow, boring, and long-winded way. But just because they’re quite successful at obscuring that that is what they’re saying, doesn’t make it any more true. What they’re doing is equivalent to a relative of an MH370 victim blaming the disaster on gravity.

      • Matt

        You might want to consider reading up on modern monetary theory, Martin. Bill Mitchell’s blog is a good place to start.

        • Martinned

          O, there’s no question that being part of the Euro isn’t helping Greece at the moment. But that, too, is a decision that they themselves made. The fact that they are choosing to pay their debts rather than leaving the Euro and defaulting does not make anything that happened an undemocratic takeover of the country.

          • glenn_uk

            You are joking, right? The “they” that borrowed the money is a right-wing administration that has since cleared off. The debts are owed to banksters and their institutions, all of which had to be made good as a result of the Greek finance crises – not the people.

            When you make a loan, you take a risk that it’s not going to be paid back – that’s what the interest rate reflects. It’s not guaranteed by the social infrastructure and pensions of a country. You don’t know any of this, do you?

            The Greeks are hardly “choosing to pay their debts rather than leaving the Euro and defaulting” either – not when that “choice” was made when they (metaphorically speaking) had a gun to their head. “We will collapse your banks”, the Greeks were told by EU financiers, unless they “agreed” to punishing conditions designed to please the banksters.

            That’s when the EU truly died as a force for good, and it deserves to break up because of it.

          • Martinned

            The “they” that borrowed the money was the democratically elected government of Greece. (Who, incidentally, did what every other Greek government – including the current one – has also done: promise to spend money without specifying where the money would come from.)

          • Martinned

            “We will collapse your banks”, the Greeks were told by EU financiers, unless they “agreed” to punishing conditions designed to please the banksters.

            Yes, and what do you think happens when you don’t pay your mortgage?

          • glenn_uk

            It’s not a mortgage – it’s a loan. A loan that was taken out with the full understanding that it might not be paid back at all, or in full. The rate of interest on that loan reflects the risk. Your household analogy is ludicrously simplistic, with all due respect.

  • Manda

    Surely terrorism is committing destructive, threatening and life threatening acts for political gain and leverage or take revenge for perceived political injustice?

    “Horrible things happen in a complicated and unfair world. Unless we see a truly revolutionary social change which fundamentally addresses the distribution of work, reward and wealth and the ownership of enterprises, societal coherence is going to continue to deteriorate. One brand of Tory versus another and Brexiteer versus Remainer are fluff, and not relevant to the current tragedy. ”

    I agree with this 100%. As Richard D Wolff says “Democratize the enterprise”.

    I don’t feel we know enough about the tragic death of Jo Cox and the minutes and moments prior to the fatal attack on her. Speculation is surrounding the perpetrators background. which will have relevance but what actually prompted the attack on her is where we should start in my opinion.

  • Krief

    OK. Let’s assume that you are the government of a country, and you know there are lots of racists in the general population.

    What is the best way to maintain stability and avoid civil strife?

  • AliB

    I find your dislike of the Massie article hard to understand. He is saying it is the rhetoric around Brexit, that, led by UKIP for years, but most recently by Conservatives in the Brexit camp, which has sought to tell “people they are under threat, that their country has been stolen from them, that they have been betrayed and sold down the river, that their birthright has been pilfered, that their problem is they’re too slow to realise any of this is happening, that their problem is they’re not sufficiently mad as hell” leads to incitement of hatred with sometimes devastating results.

    I’ve not come across Massie before,so I don’t know if he has participated in this. And yes this rhetoric has been created by the rightwing press and the Spectator is right wing. Why does that make the article invalid?

  • RobG

    I would say that the Fourth Estate have had a large part to play in this tragedy. In my lifetime I’ve never seen such a constant stream of bile and hatred. In the UK violent attacks against homeless people are now commonplace, because we’re told that it’s the ‘welfare scroungers’ who have crashed the economy (whereas, of course, it’s the vermin who inhabit the City of London and Wall Street who are responsible). Here in France there’s a football tournament going on, and the UK media are deliberately downplaying the violence from British fans, fans who are all pumped-up to hate the French, the Russians and of course the immigrants.

    Then there’s the army of trolls who now infest internet comment threads, trolls who pump out the same message of hatred and promote British and American ‘exceptionalism’.

    In this climate it’s perhaps surprising that the murder of an MP hasn’t happened sooner. The unprecedented hate campaign against Jeremy Corbyn is a good example of this.

    The presstitutes should be in the dock, every bit as much as Tommy Mair.

    • D-Majestic

      Agree entirely. Wonder where the “Heavy Mob” are at present? Must be a damn long conference call.

  • Nuada

    No, Craig, being concerned about immigration is not racism, and when you claimed that it is, you became Trigglypuff.

  • michael norton

    I hope that vile bastard George Osborne knows how to fall on his sword,
    June 24 would be a good day to bury bad news.

  • glenn_uk

    I hold that the fashionable slogan “it is not racist to be concerned about immigration” is a lie.

    I fear that this attitude is what will ultimately heave us out of Europe.

    Many people are genuinely concerned about rising populations, a strain on already beset social services (housing, roads, health, education), cheap labour, and the changing of their culture. They need a proper discussion, not unpleasant labels.

    To dismiss ALL of these concerns as “racism”, and to imply anyone mentioning same is a stupid, ignorant racist, is to lose the argument to them. Worse than that, they have been insulted by what is perceived (with some justification!) as an arrogant elite.

    At the end of the day, these now angered, insulted and dismissed individual – many millions of them – are going to vote. Which way do you think they’re more likely to vote, as a result of such a “discussion”?

    • Ultraviolet

      “Many people are genuinely concerned about rising populations, a strain on already beset social services (housing, roads, health, education), cheap labour, and the changing of their culture. They need a proper discussion, not unpleasant labels.”

      Except what we have seen is outright dismissal of any facts about the beneficial impact of immigration, with a fallback on “Yes, but what about the transformation of where I live into a foreign country”. The problem with that is that the people who say that are not talking about Australian, American and European immigrants, but those from the south Asian continent. This a) has nothing to do with the EU and b) would not be changed by a Brexit anyway.

      Immigration is actually many different issues which need different considerations. The different groups include refugees; illegal entrants; visa overstayers; EU migration; immigration from outside the EU. The different issues include proper processing of applications, proper enforcement of visa rules, proper staffing of border agencies, proper rules to determine who can come here legally, proper programmes to determine where they can live and how to share the costs of hosting them fairly.

      There are all sorts of legitimate debates to be had here, not one of which would give rise to any concern that the discussion was about racism. But so long as people reduce it to wanting to keep foreigners out (and usually only the dark-skinned ones), they will be dismissed as racist, and rightly so.

      • glenn_uk

        Both sides are highly dismissive of each others’ claims – you must have noticed that.

        Your argument not very good, because it immediately assumes it’s all about racism – those of different colour, and the negative inferences you draw from your own assertion.

        It’s rather funny that you should complain about “outright dismissal”, and then assume those concerned about immigration are all racists and follow up that with an assertion that “they will be dismissed as racist, and rightly so.”

        A classic staw-man argument from you, if ever I saw one. Textbook example.

    • Anon1

      Can you expand a bit on what you find interesting in the Above Top Secret thread? I can’t open it in my browser.

      • MJ

        It concerns Jo Cox’s husband Brendan, who was once a highly paid director of Save the Children (the poster cites Craig as the source of this information). It goes on to point out that Mr Cox resigned from his position following accusations of “inappropriate behaviour” towards female staff. He denied the accusations and no evidence was ever presented but he nevertheless resigned.

    • hairyman

      One of the reasons I enjoy this blog so much but stray below the line so little is because there is a clear division between interesting, informed, and relevant commentary (above the line) and lizards-rule-the-world conspiracy theories and swivel eyed lunacy below the line. Linking to a post that insinuates a connection between this woman’s death and her widower only a day after her murder, which attacks his character as he attempts to grieve and look after his children, is in extremely bad taste, and a mile way from the usual standard of commentary you have provided over the years.

    • Bright Eyes

      New charity scandal as Save The Children executive quits after women’s complaints of ‘inappropriate behaviour’
      Chief strategist Brendan Cox denied the allegations but quit in September
      £160,000-a-year chief executive Justin Forsyth left for separate reasons
      Both men were senior advisers to former Prime Minister Gordon Brown
      The women threatened to ‘make a huge fuss’ when the charity did nothing
      By Simon Walters, Political Editor For The Mail On Sunday
      Published: 00:53, 1 November 2015

      Read more:

    • John Monro

      Not sure that this at all appropriate in this situation. It’s called muddying the waters, and they’re pretty full of sh-t already.

    • Nuada

      I’ve run across him before. Bit of a nutter but actually, quite interesting and stimulating.

  • Rob

    I understand the point Craig makes here about one definition of terrorism for Muslims and one for non-Muslims, however I am somewhat tired of the rush to label all killings as terrorism, regardless of who perpetrated it. It’s almost as though the liberal left want to see equality of definition, even if that definition is problematic in the first place.

    On a separate note, I have been appalled at The Guardian’s response to the awful events yesterday. Without any solid corroboration, The Guardian called out the killing as an attack against ‘idealism and democracy’; they presented no facts that the attack was ideologically driven, but did reference a disputed eyewitness statement which indicated the attacker may have shouted ‘Britain first’, although the eyewitness who stated this also sought to clarify that he did not know if he heard it correctly or in what context it was said. The Guardian also stated that Jo Cox had been ‘singled out’, despite earlier reports suggesting she had intervened in an argument between two other people.

    Polly Toynbee, possibly much like Alex Massie, seeks to lay the blame for the debasement of discourse at the feet of Farage and Johnson, yet has nothing to say about the lies and fear-mongering spread by the likes of Cameron and Osborne. She seeks to frame the entire Leave campaign around immigration, and states that the rest of the world will think Britain is “anti-foreigner” if the referendum result is for Leave; I find this as an insult to the millions of people who will vote to leave based on other legitimate reasons. In fact, I find Toynbee’s piece – and the Guardian’s repsonse as a whole – to be incredibly ironic and hypocritical; they appear to be calling out the toxicity of the referendum debate – but by focusing only on the foibles of the Leave side. It is, in fact, this complete lack of balance which has proved so divisive throughout the entire debate, and is as responsible for ill-feeling as any xenophobia or racism stoked up by Farage et al.

    • Nuada

      Being appalled at the Guardian’s use of a dead woman to make political capital is like being appalled at the sea because it’s wet. What do you expect from a pig but a grunt? The Guardian is a liberal organ, and all liberals (all lefties, in fact) share the Whig view of history. Moral progress is always inevitable, the liberal is always on the right side of history and the current crop of liberals, be it Polly Toynbee, Alex Massie or whoever is always the final, purest distillation of advanced humanity. But, we need hardly say, these “tomorrow people” (remember them?) are always surrounded by devolved, simian creatures driven by hate and rage whom the good liberal must always fight, and, regrettably, sometimes they have to fight dirty for the greater good. So, it’s not REALLY wrong when they use a murder to smear those who don’t see things their way, because if they don’t do things like that, then the world will not turn out as they want it to, and since they take themselves as the standard of good and right, by definition, whatever they do cannot be wrong. I mean, it would be a catastrophic situation for humanity if things didn’t turn out their way.

      • michael norton

        how excellently put.

        Which brings us to THE QUESTION.

        If the Voters of the United Kingdom vote to leave the European Union, will we be asked to think again?

  • Macky

    Apparently terrorism isn’t attacking an MP for his political views while wearing an IDF T-Shirt, as the attack on George Galloway showed, and it was not even considered as a religiously aggravated assault despite the fact that the attacker was a recent convert to Judaism; as Galloway said at the time;

    “I fail to see why that charge was dropped given that he was wearing an IDF T-shirt and screaming about Israel and me. If an Asian man wearing a Palestinian T-shirt had attacked a pro-Israeli MP would the sentence have been the same?”

    No George, the sentence would not have been the same, and forget the religiously aggravated assault charge, as it would have been terrorism charges

  • Martinned

    Unless we see a truly revolutionary social change which fundamentally addresses the distribution of work, reward and wealth and the ownership of enterprises, societal coherence is going to continue to deteriorate.

    I was more or less with you until I got to the end. Let me get this straight: The solution to all of these problems is found in the ideology you already adhered to anyway? That’s convenient! What else does it cure? The common cold? The consistent increase in the number of Kardashian spinoff shows? Death itself?

  • fedup


    Britain First recently held “knife defence” training courses during a “camping trip” in the Welsh mountains. They told supporters they will learn skills like ‘knife defence’ and ‘rough camping’.

    The attacker may have shouted “Britain First” but clearly it is not a terrorist attack, because;
    A- The attacker was not brown skinned!
    B- He was not a Muslim
    C- He may not have hid explosives in his house and garage, and that is why his neighbours were not ejected from their homes while the police went about investigating and safely disposing/getting rid of the stuff.

    However on the same day, a fifteen year old Muslim terrorist was rightly apprehended in an early morning raid on his house, which was subject to a thorough search, although his time the house is not to be dismantled and taken apart like the last time. Also the police did not attend raid with the accompaniment of thirty fire engines and seventy ambulances and a three hundred police officers armed to their teeth. This is clearly and indication of the measure of the success of our diligent boys in the GCHQ, and 764 other internal spy agencies.

    Meanwhile back at the ranch, our thoughts are turned onto the question of; should we stay or should we go?

    That is in addition to venting our frustrations and anger on the immigrants and homeless foreign nomads that we have helped to become homeless refugee nomads by bombing the crap out of their neighbourhoods in their former country of residence. It is nice to have the luxury of bombing them and killing them and then hating those who survived the bombings for not dying with all those expensive bombs and ordnance raining on them. Then having the temerity of turning up at our doorsteps for food and shelter, do they fucking think the pottery kiln rules apply to us? That is if you break it you own it, and must pay for it?

    • Loony

      He was most likely not a terrorist because he was mentally ill, and hence his crime was a product of mental illness.

      There is no evidence to suggest that he was in any way sponsored or encouraged by a group known as Britain First. Perhaps he supported Britain First – I do not know. I do know that Greville Janner supported the British Labour Party, and I do know that an extrapolation of that fact that seeks to make predatory pedophilia ineluctably associated with Labour Party policy would be both wrong and illogical.

      Seeking to link Britain First with this attack is simply designed to implant in the minds of people that to be against the EU is somehow to be in favor of murdering lawmakers. Should this tactic work then the bleeding heart smearing liberal classes will left free to continue their economically genocidal assault on the Greek population.

      It is the case that many problems in many parts of the world are a consequence of US/EU/NATO policy. A response that is confined to shedding crocodile tears for these crimes is no response. A real response is to hold those guilty of initiating these crimes accountable before the law, and to seek to dismantle the institutions that play a full role in permitting and encouraging the execution of such crimes.

      As always a meaningful response is not straightforward and requires application, persistence, determination, and most likely some degree of personal sacrifice. The population of the UK has an opportunity to begin to atone for the crimes committed in its name, and to begin to create the conditions necessary to limit the scope for the commissioning of further crimes.

      This initial opportunity requires very little actual effort – all it needs is for millions of people to tick a box and bring an end to the wholly destructive EU. Whether you like it or not the UK represents the best opportunity for the people of southern Europe to escape the economic straitjacket that so firmly ensnares them

      • fedup

        Rezwan Ferdaus, who had no weapons and no connections to international terrorists, and whose mental wellness had deteriorated so much that he was wearing adult diaper at the time of his arrest on terrorism charges. Is a threat to be dealt with a life sentence. But Tommy is mentally ill and is not a terrorist?

        Do the terrorist have a THRUSH* franchise, HQed in the caves of Afghanistan and perhaps the destroyed ruins of Palmyra in Syria? Ought terrorists be affiliate members of that secret organisation? Your definition of terrorism is the widely thought out memes propagated by the Oligarch Owned Media indeed.

        See the next reply for the back ground on the white supremacist Tommy that is being passed as an Apolitical mentally ill loner.

        So far as the rest; it conveys a feeling of foreboding that the leave campaign will lose. This of course is based on the first past the post mentality that is not taking into account the numbers of vote cast is an accurate and true reflection of the will of the people not suspecting any box stuffing or vote stealing endeavours, and has little to do with phony constructs of the first past the post that is entirely dependent on the undecided Kent and Essex middle class undecided party hoppers. Thus determining the future course of our quasi autocracy hat is foisted upon the electorate as the best democracy since sliced bread.

        You have little faith in our xenophobic, racist compatriots, who will be unanimously voting leave even if it is to stop the johnny foreigner from using the NHS, and getting benefits! Thus the fancy notions forwarded above are in fact too fancy to be applied to this referendum.

        Finally you seem to have not noticed the thrust of debate for more security for the MPs that is the next development to further protect the current mini monarchs** and restore order and calm with introduction of even more draconian surveillance laws and austerity*** measures for we the people.

        * Technological Hierarchy for the Removal of Undesirables and the Subjugation of Humanity
        ** there is the head king/queen in Buck palace, and then there are plenty of minor little royals with their own mini royal houses handing the accession to the relevant parliamentary seats from the elders to the younger generation of the same families.
        *** taxing the poor at source, and cutting the middleman out.

  • Fredi

    Jo Cox Killer Had ‘Mental Health Problems,’ Wasn’t Political, Didn’t Shout ‘Britain First’
    Chris Menahan

    These are the dirty tricks the establishment will pull not to lose power.

    The killer of Jo Cox was reportedly known to be mentally ill and taking meds, those who knew him said he was apolitical, and at least one witnesses quoted as saying the killer shouted “Britain First” says he said nothing of the sort.

    • fedup

      Tommy Mair is a white supremacist who subscribed to the ‘South Africa Patriot’ magazine until around 2006.
      is suffering from OCD. His brother is on record that he washes his hands with cleaning pads. He is far from Apolitical, stop covering up the extent of the Far right activities of miscreants that is going under the radar and unnoticed.

      That Witness never said that to begin with, he was late on the scene towards the end; as Tommy stabs another man and walks away coolly. Stop conflating witness statements.

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