British Democracy is Dysfunctional 918


A significant proportion of Labour MPs are actively seeking to cause their own party to do badly in forthcoming local elections, with the aim of damaging the leader of that party. To that end they have attacked Jeremy Corbyn relentlessly in a six week crescendo, in parliament and in the entirely neo-liberal owned corporate media, over the Skripal case, over Syria, and over crazy allegations of anti-semitism, again and again and again.

I recall reporting on an Uzbek Presidential election where the “opposition” candidate advised voters to vote for President Karimov. When you have senior Labour MPs including John Woodcock, Jess Phillips, John Mann, Luciana Berger, Mike Gapes, Wes Streeting and Ruth Smeeth carrying on a barrage of attacks on their own leader during a campaign, and openly supporting Government positions, British democracy has become completely dysfunctional. No amount of posing with leaflets in their constituencies will disguise what they are doing, and every Labour activist and trade unionist knows it.

British democracy cannot become functional again until Labour voters have a chance to vote for candidates of their party who are not supporters of the neo-liberal establishment. This can only happen by the removal as Labour candidates of a very large number of Labour MPs.

That it is “undemocratic” for party members to select their candidates freely at each election, and it is “democratic” for MP’s to have the guaranteed candidacy for forty years irrespective of their behaviour, is a nonsensical argument, but one to which the neo-liberal media fiercely clings as axiomatic. Meanwhile in the SNP, all MPs have to put themselves forward to party members equally with other candidates for selection at every election. This seems perfectly normal. Indeed every serious democratic system elects people for a fixed term. Labour members do not elect their constituency chairman for life, so why should they elect their parliamentary candidate for life? Why do we keep having general elections rather than voters elect the MP for life?

Election of parliamentary candidates for life is in fact a perfectly ludicrous proposition, but as it is currently vital to attempts to retain undisputed neo-liberal hegemony, anybody who dissents from the idea that candidacy is for life is reviled in the corporate and state media as anti-democratic, whereas the truth is of course the precise opposite.

The election of Jeremy Corbyn to the Labour leadership was a fundamental change in the UK. Previously the choice offered to electors in England and Wales was between two parties with barely distinguishable neo-liberal domestic policies, and barely distinguishable neo-conservative foreign policies. Jeremy Corbyn then erupted onto centre stage from the deepest backbenches, and suddenly democracy appeared to offer people an actual choice. Except that at the centre of power Jeremy did not in fact command his own party, as its MPs were largely from the carefully vetted Progress camp and deeply wedded to neo-conservative foreign policy, including a deep-seated devotion to the interests of the state of Israel as defined by the Israeli settlers and nationalist wing, and almost as strongly wedded to the economic shibboleths of neo-liberalism.

These Labour MPs were, in general, prepared grudgingly to go along with a slightly more social democratic economic policy, but drew the line absolutely at abandoning the neo-conservative foreign policy of their hero Tony Blair. So pro-USA policy, support for bombings and missiles as “liberal intervention” in a Middle Eastern policy firmly aligned to the interests of Israel and against the Palestinians, and support for nuclear weapons and the promotion of arms industry interests through a new cold war against Russia, are the grounds on which they stand the most firmly against their own party leadership – and members. Over these issues, these Labour MPs will support, including with voting in parliament, the Tories any day.

I have never voted Labour. I come from a philosophical viewpoint of the liberal individualist rather than of working class solidarity. Labour support for nuclear weapons and other WMD, in the blinkered interest of the members of the General Municipal and Boilermakers’ Union, is one reason that I could not vote Labour. The other is of course that in many cases, if you vote Labour you are very likely to be sending to parliament an individual who will vote with the Tories to escalate the arms race and conduct dangerous and destructive proxy wars in the Middle East.

There is an excellent article on Another Angry Voice which lists the only 18 MPs who were brave enough to vote against Theresa May’s 2014 Immigration Act, which enshrined dogwhistle racism and the hostile environment policy.

Diane Abbott (Labour)
Jeremy Corbyn (Labour)
Jonathan Edwards (Plaid Cymru)
Mark Lazarowicz (Labour)
John Leech (Liberal Democrat)
Elfyn Llwyd (Plaid Cymru)
Caroline Lucas (Green)
Angus MacNeil (SNP)
Fiona Mactaggart (Labour)
John McDonnell (Labour)
Angus Robertson (SNP)
Dennis Skinner (Labour)
Sarah Teather (Liberal Democrat)
David Ward (Liberal Democrat)
Mike Weir (SNP)
Eilidh Whiteford (SNP)
Hywel Williams (Plaid Cymru)
Pete Wishart (SNP)

5 of the 6 SNP MPs stood against this racism (the sixth was absent) and the current leadership of the Labour Party stood alone against the Blairites and Tories in doing so. The Windrush shame should inspire Labour members to deselect every single one of the Red Tories who failed to vote against that Immigration Act. It is also a measure of the appalling shame of the Liberal Democrats, of whom only three of their sixty odd MPs opposed it, and who consigned themselves to the dustbin of history through Nick Clegg’s gross careerism and right wing principles.

There is more to say though. This vote is testament to the great deal in common which the SNP have with the current Labour leadership (who also personally consistently opposed Trident), as opposed to with the bulk of Labour MPs. Put another way, Corbyn, Abbot and McDonnell have more in common with the SNP than the Blairites. It is also a roll-call of those MPs who have most consistently stood against the appalling slow genocide of the Palestinians. It is astonishing how often that issue is a reliable touchstone of where people stand in modern British politics.

Corbyn’s supporters have slowly gained control of major institutions within the Labour Party. The essential next move is for compulsory re-selection of parliamentary candidates at every election and an organised purge of the Blairites. If the Labour Party does not take that step, I could not in conscience urge anyone to vote for it, even in England, but rather to look very carefully at the actual individual candidates standing and decide who deserves your support.


918 thoughts on “British Democracy is Dysfunctional

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  • mIKE

    DISP[ATCHES FROM DAMASCUS

    PART ONE Mike Raddie April 15th 2018 https://bsnews.info/dispatches-from-damascus-part-one/

    PART TWO Alison Banville April 16th 2018 https://bsnews.info/dispatches-from-damascus-part-two/

    PART THREE Alison Banville April 19th 2018 https://bsnews.info/dispatches-from-damascus-part-three/

    BS News = Hello and welcome to BSNews

    ‘A declaration of intellectual war on the corporate media’
    ‘BS’ (short for ‘bullshit’) is the ironic title we have chosen to express our frustration with the corporate and political bias in the mainstream media (MSM).

    This systemic bias is summed up by the ‘Propaganda Model’ advanced by Noam Chomksy and Edward Herman in their must-read book, ‘Manufacturing Consent’ which describes how the very structure of our mainstream news media (corporate owned, run for profit, government appointed boards in the case of the BBC) creates a fundamental conflict between independence and serving the elite interests that control these news outlets. Why is it so important to draw attention to this? Because the consequences of such distortion can be measured in the suffering and deaths of millions of people who become the victims of our wars waged on the back of fabricated public assent . An assent only made possible by journalists unwilling to question their elite sources who then obediently base their reports on these lies and deceits. Thoreau said, we ‘must do justice, cost what it may’. If then, by unrelentingly insisting on honesty and humanity above profit and power, our familiar and cherished news institutions cease to be, if we have to admit that as citizens we have been blind and deaf and dumb, then so be it! Let’s breathe.

    /..
    https://bsnews.info/about-us-2/

    • Sharp Ears

      Sorry to confuse. I entered Mike’s name in the ‘name’ box by mistake.
      BBC cont’d

      The BBC was a Trust. It is now a board of place persons and stooges, chaired by David Clementi.

      •David Clementi. Chairman.
      •Tony Hall. Director-General.
      •Anne Bulford. Deputy Director-General.
      •Simon Burke. Senior Independent Director.
      •Elan Closs Stephens. Member for Wales.
      •Tim Davie. CEO, BBC Worldwide.
      •Tanni Grey-Thompson. Non-executive Director.
      •Ian Hargreaves. Non-executive Director.

      Clementi – Here’s a place person. A stooge if ever there was one.

      Sir David Clementi was appointed as Chairman of the BBC in February 2017

      David was Chairman of Virgin Money from 2011-2015, Chairman of Prudential plc. from 2002-2008, and Deputy Governor of the Bank of England from 1997-2002 where, in addition to his membership of the Monetary Policy Committee, he was responsible for the day-to-day management of the Bank. Prior to this, he worked at Kleinwort Benson for 22 years, including as Chief Executive.

      David’s experience of governance issues covers both commercial and not-for-profit organisations. He has served on the Board of the Financial Reporting Council, responsible for the Combined Code of Corporate Governance. He has also chaired the Audit Committee of Rio Tinto, and acted as Senior Independent Director and Chairman of the Finance and Audit Committee at the Royal Opera House.

      From 2003-2004, David carried out a review for the Ministry of Justice of the regulatory framework for legal services in England and Wales – the main recommendations of which formed the basis of the Legal Services Act 2007. In 2015 he was asked by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport to review the governance and regulatory arrangements for the BBC, reporting in March 2016.

      In addition to his role at the BBC, David is Chairman of King’s Cross Central Partnership. He is an Honorary Fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford, and an Honorary Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

      He was appointed Knight Bachelor in 2004.’
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/corporate2/insidethebbc/managementstructure/biographies/clementi_david#heading-biography-

      To them that hath…Clementi is given £100k pa from the licence fee payers. I should imagine he is well padded out with sponduliks already. The non executive directors each receive £33k pa. The BBC crowd are detailed on http://www.bbc.co.uk/corporate2/insidethebbc/managementstructure/biographies#
      Hall is paid £450k.

      Tim Davie BBC Worldwide receives £640,000 Eyewatering? Plus a bonus of +£240k YCNMIU

      There is also an executive committee http://www.bbc.co.uk/corporate2/insidethebbc/managementstructure/seniormanagement
      which includes Purnell, ex BLiar minister, LFoI and Zionist supporter..
      See https://electronicintifada.net/content/apologists-israel-take-top-posts-bbc/12395

      • Sharp Ears

        King’s Cross Central Partnership Ltd
        Here’s Clementi at work in 2013. He looks rather gormless but he is obviously a smooth operator. The privatisation of publicly owned land and buildings at Kings Cross. The Guardian at Kings Place is across the road.
        https://www.kingscross.co.uk/press/2013/01/14/press-release-2013-01-11

        Look at the crowd who have all benefitted from the pillage.

        King’s Cross is being developed by the King’s Cross Central Limited Partnership
        The partnership is the single land owner at King’s Cross, making development and delivery easier. Many of the people working on the project have been involved from the beginning. This brings an unusual level of continuity and commitment. The partnership brings together two groups:
        1. Argent King’s Cross Limited Partnership
        Backed by Argent, one of the UK’s best respected property developers, and Hermes Investment Management on behalf of the BT Pension Scheme. Argent is the asset manager for King’s Cross. Argent has developed Brindleyplace in Birmingham and Manchester’s Piccadilly

        2. AustralianSuper
        Australia’s biggest superannuation/pension funds run only to profit members. The Fund manages more than $AUD91 billion of members’ assets on behalf of more than two million members from across 210,000 businesses. One in 10 working Australians is a member of AustralianSuper. King’s Cross is its first direct London investment and only its second in the UK

        There is a long list of architects, planners, designers, construction firms etc.

        All thanks to Cameron and Osborne.

        No names. No pack drill. Kings Cross Central Partnership Ltd
        Not on Company Check.
        No details on Bloomberg. – Company Overview of King’s Cross Central Limited Partnership https://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?

      • Ultraviolet

        David Clementi. Oh Christ almighty, that explains a great deal.

        Clementi was the man who destroyed self-regulation of the legal professions. They are now regulated by “independent” bodies overseen by the Government-appointed Legal Services Board.

        http://www.avocatsparis.org/Presence_Internationale/Droit_homme/PDF/Rapport_Clementi.pdf

        We are pretty much unique in the developed world in allowing external regulation of lawyers, who have such a vital role in holding the Government to account.

        His report also brought in the concept of “Alternative Business Structures” – law businesses owned by non-lawyers. So, unless you can prove that somebody is not a fit and proper person to own their own legal business, they can do so. Maxwell Law would have been an option. Media barons and Russian oligarchs are free to do so. And of course, there would be nothing to stop them using unfair competition to drive out independent lawyers.

        Again, we are almost alone in permitting such a concept.

        • Sharp Ears

          Thanks for that Ukltraviolet. I knew none of that.

          Clementi is indeed a placeperson.

  • Skyblaze

    In terms ofor democracy we really need to ditch the first past the post system and have proportional representation. In some areas it’s pointless voting if you oppose the dominant party there so it leads to marginal swing areas determining power. Plus it leads to more accurate and diverse opinionso and ideas in government

  • certa certi

    ‘Guardian allows satire on a CHOGAM/Skripal mashup’

    Doorknobs. When we were kids we used to put jam on them at school. 6 cuts on each hand if Father Cronin had ever found out whodunnit. Sort of thing Richmal Crompton’s William would do. Anyone know if the William books been translated to Russian? If Novichok and jam, perhaps marmalade, had been applied to the doorknob perhaps the cat licked it then licked the Skripals. Works for me.

    • Sharp Ears

      Who’s paying you certa certi? Rather than ‘some certain’ how about ‘Very uncertain’ for your handle?

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Ophelia Ball April 21, 2018 at 09:32
      ‘…”Moreover, searching by the key word “Novichok” on the digital source google.patents.com you can find over 140 patents issued by the United States, related to the use and protection from exposure to the “Novichok” toxic agent,” he stressed….’

      So perhaps the OPCW, May and cronies should have said: ‘..of a kind patented by the US’.

      • Ivan

        But not the creation of a Novichok agent as such. The Russians should be accurate with their words, in order to hold up their case. All the patents, and patent claims fished up by ‘bj’ below relate to the prevention or administration of nerve agents. Nowhere is there a patent for a Novichok-type of nerve agent. And it would be shocking if the US allowed a patent on it.

        • SA

          Ivan
          To study antidotes to an agent you have to be able to produce it, though I agree with you that the patent is not for the substance itself. However this still negates the rubbish statement that only Russia could have produced novichok.

    • Tatyana

      “explosive” 🙂 🙂 🙂
      Russians can’t present information in that way which western public is tamed to. Here is the link to illustrate my point
      from 00:22 till 02:54
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t915p97iRVg
      The 1st herald is like russian news, the 2nd (aka Geoffrey Chaucer) is like western media.

      p.s. Mind the 1st said all the truth, the 2nd just suck his story from finger.
      p.p.s The movie is “A Knights Tale”, worth watching ayway.

    • King of Welsh Noir

      Ophelia – amazing. Remember how in the first Cold War we looked up to the BBC as the voice of truth and mocked Pravda and Tass? It’s the other way round now.

      • Blissex

        The rule has always been: read foreign sources for the interesting news about your country, and viceversa.
        RT/Sputnik etc. are fairly honest about russian matters too, but of course they skip gently over the more embarrassing bits.

        • bj

          From the above mentioned list (that I haven’t scanned exhaustively yet), esp. http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-bool.html&r=13&f=G&l=50&co1=AND&d=PTXT&s1=novichok&OS=novichok&RS=novichok elaborates on ‘novichok’.

          A quote:


          The Novichok agents are organophosphorus compounds with an attached dihaloformaldoxime group, with the general formula shown below, where R=alkyl, alkoxy, alkylamino or fluorine and X=halogen (F, Cl, Br) or pseudohalogen such as C.ident.N. (Kruglyak Yu et al., Phosphorylated oximes. XII. Reactions of 2-halophospholanes with dichlorofluoronitrosomethane, Zhumal Obshchei Khimii. 1972; 42(4):811-14; Raevskii O A, et al., Effect of Alkyl Substituents in Phosphorylated Oximes, Zhumal Obshchei Khimii. 1987; 57(12):2720-2723; Raevskii O A, et al., Electron-Donor Functions of Ethyl Methylchloroformimino Methylphosphonate, Zhumal Obshchei Khimii. 1987; 57(9):2073-2078; Makhaeva G F, et al., Comparative studies of O,O-dialkyl-O-chloromethylchloroformimino phosphates: interaction with neuropathy target esterase and acetylcholinesterase, Neurotoxicology, 1998 August-October; 19(4-5):623-8. PMID 9745921; Malygin V V, et al., Quantitative structure-activity relationships predict the delayed neurotoxicity potential of a series of O-alkyl-O-methylchloroformimino phenylphosphonates, Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health Part A. 2003 Apr. 11; 66(7):611-25, PMID 12746136; and Steven L. Hoenig, Compendium of Chemical Warfare Agents, Springer N.Y., 2007, ISBN 978-O-387-34626-7, incorporated herein by reference).

          ##STR00001##

          The most potent compounds from this family, Novichok-5 and Novichok-7, are supposedly around 5-8 times more potent than VX; however, the exact structures of these compounds are not publicly available. Some examples of Novichok compounds reported in the literature are shown below.

          end quote

          • Ophelia Ball

            well, there you have it in black and white:

            “Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health Part A. 2003 Apr. 11; 66(7):611-25, PMID 12746136; and Steven L. Hoenig, Compendium of Chemical Warfare Agents, Springer N.Y., 2007, ISBN 978-O-387-34626-7,”

            are obviously Russian fake news publications

            case dismissed

        • bj

          And also interesting, from http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=50&p=1&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=novichok&OS=novichok&RS=novichok

          Quote:

          [0171] A third class of highly reactive organophosphoryl compounds that are nerve gases includes the Novichok (Russian for “newcomer”) agents. These extremely potent third-generation chemical weapons have been developed in the Soviet Union and Russia in 1970s to 1990s. A description of Novichok agents is provided by Mirzayanov (1995) (see page 31, in particular) and include the unitary agents Substance 33, A-230, A-232 and binary agents Novichok-5, Novichok-#? (no established name-based on substance 33) and Novichok-7. A third-generation unitary nerve agent, A-234, is also known and is reported to be derived from acrylonitrile and a common organophosphoryl pesticide precursor. A-234 is dispersible as an ultra-fine powder as opposed to a gas or a vapor, and therefore has unique qualities. It can bypass much of the chemical protective gear used by most modern armies where it can be absorbed directly through the skin. A binary agent based upon A-234 that would mimic these same properties, has also been manufactured using materials legal under the Chemical Weapons Treaty or undetectable by treaty regime inspections.

          End quote

    • Republicofscotland

      I think it has been said that quite a few state actors and non state actors are quite capable of producing Novichoks. It has been the PM’s and FS’s wording, “of a Russian type” that has cast unfounded aspersion on Moscow.

        • Republicofscotland

          No.

          It was Benjamin Disraeli who said.

          “The Conservative party is an organised hypocrisy.”

  • Paul Barbara

    @ Mochyn69 April 21, 2018 at 07:45
    ‘Thanks for that Paul, truly enlightening.
    For what it’s worth, confirms very much what I’ve been told by the only Syrian citizen I know personally, a highly educated, globalised professional who loves his family, his country and his lawfully elected president.
    Just saying.’

    Thanks. And I should add that it is how the Nicaraguan army was viewed like most Syrians view their army now when I was in Nicaragua for three and a half months in 1984 during the US-backed, paid, controlled and trained ‘Contra’ terrorist attacks against the country – they also committed atrocities like the West’s current ‘proxies of choice’, the headchoppers.
    The main difference with between the ‘Contras’ and the present proxy horde of headchoppers is the Contras never got to hold large tracts of Nicaragua, but like them they had safe R&R and bases in neighbouring countries, in their case Honduras and Costa Rica.

    As with the Gladio atrocities in Europe and elsewhere (also controlled by the CIA) it was an integral part of their training to spread terror amongst ordinary citizens. The Yanks have been pulling these stunts for decades, yet still the majority of the Sheeple don’t see through them. And they are doing the same in Venezuela, with the same ‘killing their own people’ lies (snipers and paid yobs killing both sides, committing major arson and terrorism, while the Western governments and MSM blame the Venezuelan government forces for the deaths).

    • giyane

      ” a highly educated, globalised professional who loves his family, his country and his lawfully elected president.”

      As much as we can’t do anything about USUKIS brain-washed head-choppers, we can’t do anything about USUKIS brain-washed globalised professionals who love Assad. In Islam it is compulsory to get rid of oppressor/ dictators, as compulsory for Abdullah bin Salman as for Assad. Especially when those oppressor /dictators are funded and controlled by bigger oppressor/ dictators USUKISFR etc. What’s not allowed is for the Muslims to make a confederation/ military alliance with the bigger oppressor/dictators to get rid of the smaller ones, because the big oppressor/ dictators will always utilise the fight to harm the Muslims .

      the way the USUKISFR etc has harmed the Muslims through the war against Assad, is by chemically brain-washing the Islamist by torture to be more callous, more vindictive and more corrupt than the original oppressor/ dictator, Assad. If the opposition to Assad had been law-abiding, just and not seeking worldly gain , all the Muslims of the world, including myself would have rushed to git rid of him. But the reality always was , from the beginning, that anybody placing themselves under the command of the Syrian opposition would have been kidnapped, or tortured or both at the same time.

      • Paul Barbara

        @ giyane April 21, 2018 at 12:31
        But the joy of the people from the liberated areas is not faked. How ever much your ideas of what ‘every Muslim in the world’ would do are really of little importance – Muslims are as capable of corruption and lust for power as anyone else. What was the Shia/Sunni split about, way back in the 7th century?
        Mohammed was no sooner dead, than a successor feud occurred.
        And how is it that the three countries’ leaders which genuinely opposed I*raeli abominations in Palestine are so odious to you?
        Assad kept together Muslims of all persuasions, Christians of most persuasions, and others, much like Tito kept the various religions and peoples of Yugoslavia together.
        That Assad is not a saint, who would disagree? Tell me which country on earth is ruled by Saints?
        So the ‘brain-washed globalised professionals who love Assad’ are scorned, for supporting their elected leader?
        Which oppressive leader did you vote for (I am aware some Muslums believe it is wrong to vote, so maybe you didn’t vote at all)?

        Many Brits loved Churchill during and after WWII – he was most assuredly not a saint. He even tried to get the States to nuke the Soviet Union immediately after the war.

        • giyane

          Paul Barbara

          I hope I’ve made it clear before that I object to either a dictator punishing me for not voting for him or a member of a particular sect punishing me for not obeying them. The Middle East, having been run by force for many hundreds of years, needs a political enlightenment by which nutters stop trying to force other people to do what they want.

          After your Syrian friend escaped from Assad, he was no longer under duress from Assad. After the people were released from jihadist control they were no longer under duress. It is entirely hypocritical of any country or federation that purports to hate duress for themselves to then impose it on others. As I understand it, it was William Hague who first conceived of a UK foreign policy that unashamedly used Islamist nutters on a civilian population. yes they had used nutters but at least they had the decency to oppose these nutters in public.

          To promote and fund evil for others is the opposite of English values, which are based largely on the Christian concept of doing to others as you would be done by yourself. Most people would imagine that what goes around comes around. Deliberately damaging others would eventually lead to some kind of blowback. Conservative policy appears to be to extradite anyone who might possibly threaten blowback, even if that is projected onto the goldfish in its bowl by the warped minds of the warmongering class. Not so 99% of ordinary human beings who believe to a certain extent that behaving badly risks, or even guarantees, blowback.

          I think Assad’s terrible crimes have earned him terrible blowback but I also think the neo-conservatives terrible crimes have earned them terrible blowback. I’m prepared to be patient for these two events.

          • Hatuey

            “The Middle East, having been run by force for many hundreds of years, needs a political enlightenment by which nutters stop trying to force other people to do what they want…”

            I’m sort of hard wired to say something cynical when people get positive about these things but in this case I think there is some room to be positive. It will take time to unfold, but the world will probably move away from dependency on oil, plastics, and combustion engines, and such, in the next few decades.

            When that happens you might have your enlightenment.

            It’s quite harrowing to imagine how the Middle East and so many other regions might have developed if it wasn’t for western interference. We tend to get caught up in the human tragedies, as we should, and neglect the wider developmental impact of our meddling.

            In 1700 India accounted for around 35% of world economic output, bearing in mind that GDP as a measure didn’t exist back then. In 1947, India’s share of global GDP was 2%. In 1900, at the height of Empire, the average baby Indian could expect to die by the age of 20. And that’s the gargantuan impact of western interference to this day. Death, misery, poverty, and, of course, taxes.

            As for the meddling, I’m very sick of sanctimonious people in the west talking scathingly about THEIR governments as if they themselves are blameless. This is a recurring theme for me. The animals who do these things are the same animals that people on this forum have voted for and will vote for in future.

            I’ve heard the arguments and excuses, faced with the better of two evils, etc., but I reject them out of hand. If you vote for a scumbag, regardless of the other options, you are part of the problem. When a 5 year old understands a basic principle and adults don’t, it’s the adults who are wrong and confused.

          • giyane

            Hatuey

            Well there’s a fine piece of wonkey logic. If I accept the social contract between myself and the society I live in to accept majority government, I vote for the opposition Party and remain at peace in spite of the stupid, dangerous, unfair and unpleasant actions of the ruling administration.

            As an Englishman, based on an agreement that dates back to 1640 or thereabouts I am still entitled to practice any religion of my own choice and present my opinions freely and publicly so long as they conform to common decency. There may be occasions when there are no other metaphors for the incumbent arseholes stupidity other than comparing them to things normally considered indecent in polite conversation.

            There is a vast cavern of difference between losing a vote and condoning the actions of the winner. I verbally oppose the winner at every opportunity in order to remind them that I do not condone their stupidity nor their stupidity’s catastrophic results.

          • Hatuey

            Giyane, social contract theory is pure fantasy invented by the 17th and 18th century equivalent of virgin nerds. It’s no coincidence that people more or less stopped coming up with new variants after Dungeons & Dragons hit the market and when Internet porn came along it vanished completely.

            But even if we were to take the basic premises of social contract their seriously, it doesn’t in any way account for the stuff done beyond your borders to third, no-contracted, parties.

            I insist that it’s morally wrong to vote for any party or person that carriies out crimes abroad, regardless of how relatively bad you might consider alternative parties and politicians to be.

            Not that anyone ever thinks like that in the west. Most think selfishly about how policy will impact on tax & income etc. In actual fact, looking at the last 25 years of elections in the UK, foreign policy and affairs are usually sort of kept out of it; and that suits everybody because invariably the primary consideration is “what’s in it for me?”

            The same is true in the US. Only when the cost of Vietnam impacted on the spending power of voters and the health of the economy did the peace movement appear.

          • giyane

            Hatuey

            I agree with you that there are many who do not see the social contract which Mrs Thatcher tried to crack by breaking the economic power of working people. Talking of Virgin nerds, I did mention that in 1640 we dispensed with papal infallibility even though the jihadists would like to bring it back in the form of Islamist hierocracy. In Islam we revere the mother of Jesus, peace be upon them both, but we don’t think statues talk or hang gold cloths onto plastic statues on a cross. We do’nt believe the imam or even the caliph is infallibly correct. We respect his authority until he contradicts the authority of the religious texts.

            That doesn’t mean that the social contractdoesn’t exist. We have a kinda unwritten rule here that you don’t skip the red lights, because it’s kinda dangerous. Yesterday I got beeped by a couple of Asian ladies who wanted to go 50 in a 20 mph zone. The ladies creep through the red lights onto the pedestrian crossing zone so that they can be first to take off and the chaps crack on through the red lights after they’ve been red for seconds. It’s an entirely new form of Islamic dating. Since they both died in the same instant, they may as well get shacked up.

            You already said you liked winding people up. The definition of a troll is someone who likes winding people up but who does not understand their own intentions. That’s called psychosis. Yes most Tory MPs and Zionist media presenters are nutters and trolls but I’m not sure if you can call them liars if they are suffering from delusional psychosis. They are simply nuts. If they choose to drive through the red lights or ignore the social contract they will inevitably either crash or be seen as shills and idiots. None of this applies to you of course because you have mentioned that you like testing your sparrees on the blog.

    • Morton Subotnick

      “…during the US-backed, paid, controlled and trained ‘Contra’ terrorist attacks against the country…”

      Trained by Israelis, from the country that also shared their nuclear technology with apartheid South Africa.

    • Canexpat

      Excellent comment Paul. Webster Tarpley was one of the first Western journalists in Syria back in 2011 when the disturbances in Homs were beginning. His reports essentially led to my awakening. Following on the series of Iraq and Libya, even my dense brain managed to comprehend that a man who was the darling of Buck Hice and a UK-trained opthamologist was unlikely to have turned into a blood-thirsty tyrant overnight and that some other agenda must be at play. Tarpley maintained that the ‘anti-government revolt’ was in reality a series of protests about the escalating cost of (previously government subsidised) cooking oil. These protests were then disrupted by mysterious snipers who shot people in the crowd. The locals begged the Syrian army to protect them from these terrorists who appeared to be infiltrating across the border from Jordan. The Western MSM then spun the entire episode as Assad oppression, despite the evidence of those of the ground including Christian nuns such as Mother Miriam de la Croix. I’m sure that the fact that Negroponte’s protege, Robert Ford was installed as US ambassador to Syria in late January 2011 was a ‘happy’ coincidence, Negroponte of course was the father of the Honduran death squads and orchestrated the U.S. support of the Contra terrorists in Nicaragua. He later helped to forment the sectarian violence in Iraq where he was joined by Ford.

      A few years later, exactly the same script was followed during the Maidan protests in Kiev.

      I have family and friends who were extremely active in the seventies in opposing US actions in Central and South America and who were experts in the CIA and State Department tactics against ‘leftist’ governments throughout the Americas and yet who refuse to recognise exactly the same playbook being used in the ME and Ukraine. I wonder if the BBC and Guardian have been instrumental in their selective blindness.

        • Paul Barbara

          @ Canexpat April 21, 2018 at 13:11
          Webster Tarpley spoke at a number of our 9/11 Truth meetings around 2004/2006.
          He was convinced back then that the US was manoeuvring for a war against Russia.

          Re the original infiltrators from Jordan, a number of early sources pointed out that the US set up a ‘secret’ base in Jordan to train ‘Syrian Rebels’ in 2009, including I believe Sibel Edmonds and Cynthia McKinney, who also spoke at a number of our 9/11 group. If I remember correctly she first heard about the Jordan base from her hairdresser, who’s brother was being sent there from Iraq. The sickening thing is that although there is so much information out there, the PTB still keep rolling out their Luciferian NWO – ‘One World Gulag’ agenda.

      • Bayleaf

        That shooting into the crowd of demonstrators seems to be similar to the technique used in the Ukrainian coup, though it looks like the people in Syria realised it was agents provocateurs. They’d clearly refined their technique by the time they used it again in Ukraine – probably because the plotters had better control of the media.

  • Republicofscotland

    “Hundreds of thousands of the poorest families in Britain are going without basic necessities, according to two separate surveys.
    Citizens Advice said as many as 140,000 households are going without power, as they cannot afford to top up their prepayment meters.”

    “And the Living Wage Foundation – which campaigns for fair pay – said many of the poorest parents are skipping meals.”

    As I’ve already said, they eat well and feel no cold in the undemocratic unelected House of Lords.

    The conclusion of Brexit will see a sharp increase in the total of households unable to heat or eat, as the economy will take a steeper nosedive.

  • Sharp Ears

    I’m with Jeremy on this.
    Commonwealth should get to vote on leader – Corbyn
    16/04/2018
    Jacinda Ardern says New Zealand will inevitably become a republic. Credits: Video – Newshub; Images – Getty
    The man who could be the next Prime Minister of the UK doesn’t think Prince Charles should assume he’ll take over the Commonwealth when his mum dies. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says the 53 countries of the Commonwealth should choose their next leader, rather than just let Prince Charles have the job when he takes the throne.

    The ‘inevitable’ republic: Part one
    New Zealand’s ‘inevitable’ republic: Part two

    “The Queen clearly is personally very committed to the Commonwealth, but after her I think maybe it’s a time to say well actually the Commonwealth should decide who its own President is on a rotational basis,” Mr Corbyn told the BBC.

    Queen Elizabeth II is the official head of state in 16 of the 53 countries. Prince Charles is next in line, followed by Prince William, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Harry.

    New Zealand, Australia, the UK and 13 other countries have never had a head of state that wasn’t also Head of the Commonwealth.
    Monarchists not amused by poll backing republic

    Royals still relevant, claims Monarchy NZ

    Elizabeth took the role when she assumed the throne in 1952, but the role technically isn’t a hereditary one and there aren’t any clear rules on how it should be transferred, UK media reports.

    /..
    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2018/04/commonwealth-should-get-to-vote-on-leader-corbyn.html

    P Charles has put his foot in it. Andrew Pierce of the Heil says Ms Sethi is overreacting!

    Dear Prince Charles, do you think my brown skin makes me unBritish?
    Anita Sethi
    The Prince of Wales told me I don’t look like I’m from Manchester. If this is how he thinks, he shouldn’t be the next head of the Commonwealth
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/commentisfree/2018/apr/19/prince-charles-brown-skin-british-people-head-of-commonwealth

    Pierce and all the other right wing commentators are now voicing sympathy for the ‘Windrush generation’ and deplore the way they have been treated by the Home Office. They are on the HEW MAN I TEE bandwagon. At other times, they could not give a fig for the brown skinned people the Empire has had killed nor worry about the resources we have ripped out of the so called Commonwealth countries and continue to do so.

    PS Don’t May and Rudd have the brains to work out that there would be records in the National Archive?
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5640647/Arrival-records-tens-thousands-Windrush-generation-found.html

    • giyane

      The head of the commonwealth is IMHO exactly the kind of matriarchal role as head of a family where Prince Charles would be wholly inappropriate. If the right wing are jumping on the Windrush bandwagon, it’s likely they see it as a way of getting rid of Mrs May and putting in one of their own nobheads like Fox or Rees-Mawg.
      Those ultra-opportunistic colleagues of hers that watched her racism guide her to Hard Brexit should have advised her against a racist treatment of the Polish in the UK, and they could have advised earlier about Windrush.. They can’t say ” Oh that wasn’t our department we knew nothing about it ” Rees Mawg is son of a newspaper editor. He by definition is a poly math of UK life. Brexit is just legal brief for them, a game to play. A rung in the political gravy train.

      • Rhys Jaggar

        Rees-Mawg, as you call him, actually ploughed his own furrow in the City, setting up Somerset Capital Partners as an investment vehicle. He was reputed to have been a financial nerd as a child. Be that as it may, he was born to whom he was born to, and made his own money.

        The questions he should be asked about Brexit concern prospects for financial services vs prospects for everyone else.

        Not whether he went to Eton and Oxford or not…..

  • David Collins

    In the absence of truly independent news I now view Craig’s Blog as one of my few trusted sources of news comment along with others such as Le Monde Diplomatique, Robert Fisk, Jonathan Cook, John Pilger, Greg Palast, Caroline Lucas and others. Thanks very much Craig.

      • Grace M S-W

        Yes – me too. The blog, and its usually very informed comments, are getting a bit of an addiction – so very many fascinating contributions and links it is almost a full-time job keeping up.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      David Collins,

      I have been following this blog for about 10 years. I have never actually met any of the people involved, though came close a couple of times. This blog is very different from most others, and the moderation policy, highly strange and unpredictable. The differing politics and emotions, can be really strong, and sometimes over the years, the blog has turned into an emotional battlefield of totally contrasting views. Some highly intelligent posters leave, because they are exceedingly offended, when their totally rational explanation of a current event is deleted, perhaps by some moderator, who has misunderstood either the written content or Craig’s moderation rules. But I feel really sorry for the moderators too. Sometimes it must feel like being piggy in the middle, with aggressive opposing lunatics on several sides. I wouldn’t do the job, if paid to do it, and so far as I am aware, thr moderators do it for free

      Also check out

      https://hat4uk.wordpress.com/

      http://www.moonofalabama.org/

      https://off-guardian.org/

      http://thesaker.is/latest-articles/

      http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/

      https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/

      http://www.voltairenet.org/en

      https://alethonews.wordpress.com/

      http://cluborlov.com/

      No one gets it right all the time. Everyone makes mistakes, but so far as I am aware, none of the above blogs and websites, are run by people compromised by The CIA or Western or Russian Governments.

      Many are just highly motivated individuals, running on a shoestring, who occasionaly ask for donations or ask people to buy their books.

      Tony

      • Rhys Jaggar

        Just from personal experience, I have never been moderated out here, but have several times at John Ward’s site. I have done no analysis on it, but some of Mr Ward’s censorship is of robust criticism of a few matters dear to his heart……

  • reel guid

    How can someone who has lived in the UK for 62 years since the age of four be considered an immigrant by the authorities? Unless, as you say Ros, those authorities are more than a bit fascisti.

      • reel guid

        Yes Labour’s Yvette Cooper quoted in that is just a Tory with a red rosette. Of course the Tories claimed back then that their immigration bill was not designed for mass deportations. A false promise. Just as their promise that they only want the Holyrood and Senedd powers temporarily is false.

        • Republicofscotland

          Yes they said they would amend certain aspects of it, I wonder did that come to fruition.

          As the Herald newspaper and Colonel Rape Clause Ruth Davidson both desperately try to link the SNP to Cambridge Analytica.

          It has come to light that the Tories definitely met with one of the heads dubious company.

          It was an undisclosed meeting..hmmm?

          https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2018/03/boris-johnsons-undisclosed-meeting-with-alexander-nix-of-cambridge-analytica/

        • reel guid

          While the BBC still have the non-story “SNP met Cambridge Analytica” story on their web pages after several days.

          Send a rep to hear CA’s sales pitch. Decide CA are desperados. Decide to never hire them. That somehow according to the BBC and the Tory Party is evidence of wrongdoing by the SNP. They know it isn’t. But the charade goes on all the same.

  • reel guid

    The behaviour of the BBC’s Stephen Sackur in interviewing Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov.
    Embarrassing. Sackur isn’t a real journalist.

    • reel guid

      Ruth Davidson, the most influential colonel in the world, will want to sign him up for the Orange Uncle Jock Tories.

    • Ingwe

      I don’t know why anyone raises their blood pressure by listening to the bilge that is BBC’s ‘Hard Talk’. Stephen Sackur is a known supporter of Israel and his supposedly ‘difficult’ questions usually amount to no more than ignoring the answer he’s been given and reiterating assertions, mostly without supporting evidence, he’s made earlier. He’s marginally less embarrassing (and ignorant) than Sarah Montague when she does Hard Talk. Moving her from ‘Today’ to ‘World at One’ shows how limited the choice is of so called “journalists”. And Martha Kearney, her swap partner now on ‘Today’ has taken no time at all to follow the putrid Nick Robinson in failing to ask any real questions and putting forward the Goverment’s communique as “news”. When a interviewee gets awkward both Kearney and Robinson simply talk over the interviewee. Or else they run out of time having spent 10 minutes earlier talking about the skateboarding duck or other ‘human interest’bollocks, passing as news.
      Forget the BBC and now, sadly the Guardian too, now that it’s in thrall to the editorial policy of Jonathan Freedland.

  • Sharp Ears

    Further collapse of the private sector being used by the government to carry out its responsibilities.

    One of the biggest providers of UK home care is in financial difficulty.
    Allied Healthcare, which employs 8,700 people to look after elderly and vulnerable patients, is set to file for protection from its creditors due to a “highly challenging environment”.

    The company, which also offers learning disabilities support services, said it will continue to provide care and there will be no redundancies. The government said it was “working closely” with Allied.

    Allied, ++owned by a private equity firm++, cares for 13,500 people across the UK. The home care visits it arranges help people live independently and can include cooking and cleaning, managing medication and overnight stays.

    Allied has 150 contracts with local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales.
    Care sector: ‘Short of nurses and other key staff’
    The cost of care
    Overnight carer back pay scheme ‘unaffordable’

    “As with many independent providers in the UK health and social care sector, Allied Healthcare has been operating in a highly challenging environment for a sustained period of time, which has placed pressure on the company,” a company spokesperson said.

    “As a result of these challenges, Allied Healthcare has taken the decision to pursue a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA).” Allied said there will be no redundancies or branch closures as a result of the CVA plan being implemented.

    BBC business correspondent Joe Lynam said the CVA would allow the company to pause repaying some creditors – including its pensions contributions – while the future of the business is sorted out. It will “shield them from some of their debts while they get their house in order financially”, he explained.

    Last year, HMRC ruled carers sleeping overnight should be be paid the national minimum wage for all hours, as opposed to a flat rate, and that social care providers will be required to make back-dated payments for these stays. At the time the charity Mencap warned about the “devastating” financial impact of the changes, claiming the total bill to social care providers for back pay – in some cases dating back six years – could be £400m. It is understood Allied’s bill could amount to £11m.

    A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said the government would “continue to monitor the financial stability” of Allied and other adult social care providers.” The Local Government Association, which represents local authorities, said it was working alongside the Care Quality Commission and government to support Allied, where possible.

    “The absolute priority for councils affected is to protect the vital care and support that older and disabled people rely on and ensure it is able to continue without interruption. Councils have robust contingency plans in place to manage the care of individuals if necessary,” a spokesperson added.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-43850046

    It was care on the cheap, exploiting the carers. Now they can’t pay the bill. Why are the BBC so coy in concealing the name of the ‘private equity’ lot who are Aurelius. They bought Allied Healthcare from Saga.
    http://aureliusinvest.com/en/press/press-releases/aurelius-erwirbt-allied-healthcare-von-saga-plc/
    http://aureliusinvest.com/en/companies/
    ‘Pan European and listed in Germany’. http://aureliusinvest.co.uk/

    Wonder if the carers ever found out who their employers were?

    Ref Saga. It’s like a mad board game. ‘Saga was acquired by staff (20%) backed by the private equity firm Charterhouse in October 2004. Saga merged with The AA (owned by CVC and Permira) to form Acromas Holdings.

    In July 2011, Saga acquired Allied Healthcare. On 31 January 2015, it wrote it down to zero, and then sold it, at a small net profit, to Aurelius Group in December 2015. In May 2014, it was announced that Lance Batchelor, formerly head of Domino’s Pizza, would be taking the role of CEO of the Saga Group ahead of a possible initial public offering (IPO). In May 2014, Saga Group was successfully listed on the London Stock Exchange as Saga PLC.

    Also in 2014, Saga acquired Bolton based luxury holiday company, Destinology

    • giyane

      Sharp Ears

      It doesn’t sound like a collapse, more like a misunderstanding. My sister works as a carer, having retired from being a Blind persons Mobility Officer.. Relatives of the people she cares for sometimes expect carers to take responsibility for the underlying problems that necessitate care. You can delegate care but you can’t delegate responsibility. I heard a Mental Health worker today on the local radio saying ” We are all community parents ” Carers can parent a member of a family and can parent the wider family. But sometimes that takes a lot longer than the contracted hours of work allocated. Especially if the family doesn’t want to be parented, they want to tell the carer what to do.

      Curious that the business was once part of the AA. One of their engineers recently completely dismantled and serviced my front brake caliper. He got me to agree I would do the other wheels soon. Human beings are not quite so easy. It’s a long time since I cared for anything other than electrics, so I don’t know too much about it.

    • Madeira

      Here is the relevant part of the OPCW press release – it does indeed seem that it is not worth their time interviewing witnesses at the hospital.

      “THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 21 April 2018 —The Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) team of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) visited one of the sites in Douma, Syrian Arab Republic today to collect samples for analysis in connection with allegations of chemical weapons use on 7 April 2018. The OPCW will evaluate the situation and consider future steps including another possible visit to Douma.

      The samples collected will be transported to the OPCW Laboratory in Rijswijk and then dispatched for analysis to the OPCW’s designated labs. Based on the analysis of the sample results as well other information and materials collected by the team, the FFM will compile their report for submission to the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention for their consideration.”

      https://www.opcw.org/news/article/opcw-fact-finding-mission-team-visits-douma-syria/

    • Ophelia Ball

      in fairness, I think there was some talk of the OPCW having interviewed some of the people from Douma in Damascus on the Sunday after they arrived, before they got the go ahead from their Australian UN minder

      More cynically, who in this World – OPCW, Yulia Skripal or anyone you can think of – would be immune to the kind of ‘incentives’ on offer:

      – Play nicely with the other children, and you can write your own pay check. Don’t believe us? – we own the printing press, and it’s ll just numbers to us https://www.theguardian.com/world/2007/feb/08/usa.iraq1

      – Want your own opinions? – ooh, I wouldn’t do that! We can start with the hookers, drugs and trumped-up rape allegations (DSK and Mr Assange) and if you really start to play hardball, well, we know where your kids go to school, and you can ask Dr Kelly what might happen next. Oops, no you can’t, and that’s the point

      So, which is it: Red Pill or Blue Pill?

      • Den Lille Abe

        How very true. And it goes for ordinary citizens too. If the “eye” sees you, you are already, halfway in trouble. I f you then carry on on your fight against the windmills, you will wake the dragon and we know how that ends (re Dr. Kelly).
        It is awkward that Cervantes wrote a novel in 1585, that still can be used to reflect on the evil machinations of our society.

    • Tatyana

      I wonder, will OPCW take blood or urine samples from that syrian boy from video? It is a ‘must to do’, he is a real survivor, we all have video by the White Helmets with that boy, he is found, we have his name, his father is ready to cooperate!

  • Hagar

    What you all don’t seem to understand is; you have been lied to, fooled, cheated, exploited, used and abused since the day you were born, until now, and this will continue until you die, unless you put a stop to it.
    Nothing can get at you unless you bring it into your life. Newspapers and TV can’t influence your perception unless you buy it and take it home with you. You are paying for your own downfall.

    Those who have it ALL and want MORE are totally dependent on Russia, China and Iran to be able to keep what they have, as are the rest of us.
    Yet they provoke and denigrate all of these countries while trying to impoverish them with sanctions. Sooner or later these countries will say, “enough we will not take any more”.
    Those with it all are ruled by their EGO, very dangerous for them and us.
    When these three countries fight back the EGOS will not back down, which means total nuclear extinction for the human race.

    We are all dependent on one and other, however, we don’t realise this fact. If the mechanic does not repair your car, you can’t get to work. If your doctor does not attend to your sickness you could die. Do you get the picture?
    You are dependent on me and I am dependent on you. Now tell me what your EGO thinks. I bet it says, “I am Independent”.

    We pay all the bills for war against others who have no interest in us until we start to kill them, for what? To make huge profits for companies that manufacture weapons of war and jobs for a few people. Why not build houses? Every country seems to be short of houses. Why not pay people a proper wage and let them prosper? The people will then have respect for their government instead of hatred.

    Okay brainwashed what do you think, is what England, America, France and Israel doing to the defenseless right?

    • Hatuey

      I think if you build houses it will devalue my already existing house and that’s more important to me than war and human suffering. Idealism is all well and good when you don’t have much to lose…

        • Hagar

          As long as the war is not on your doorstep and you are not the one suffering.

          Does your house Insurance cover acts of war?

          • Hagar

            Does housing for the homeless bring down the price of houses?. Does chemical attacks bring down the price of houses? It might put people out of business and therefore make them homeless.

          • Hagar

            The more you have to lose, the more you should not be doing anything to make another angry enough to destroy you and your possessions.

          • Bayard

            “Does housing for the homeless bring down the price of houses?”
            The government wants you to think it does. That fact should give us all a clue as to whether it does or not.

          • Jo Dominich

            Hagar, False flag chemical attacks and resulting action in a country with oil and destabilising the middle east makes the arms industry in the USA billions of dollars and raises the price of petrol!

        • Hatuey

          It’s perfectly rational, and indeed is defined as the ‘rational choice model’. Maybe if you were more prosperous you’d better understand the views of other people.

      • Leonard Young

        Hatuey: If the value of your house is your only measure of, or reliance upon, your wealth, then you are a property gambler like all the others. I’ve been a witness to this blog for many years and never have I seen such a blatantly selfish post – ever. What use is your valuable house if it is part of a nation in which you have to live in a siege economy, and in which there is gross inequality and the only perceived yardstick of wealth is your rotten little house. How about WORKING for a living as a measure of wealth?

        It’s comments like yours which indicate precisely why this country is becoming the NIMBY capital of Europe. Shame on you.

        • Hatuey

          Lol okay, Leonard.It seems you care more about people who can’t afford property than those of us who can. But I can’t imagine a socio-economic system with an abundance of houses that doesn’t have a flat housing market. It’s the relative scarcity that makes houses valuable and drives prices up.

          I think we need solutions that are more creative than simply building more houses.

          In japan they have very cheap places to stay, like beds inside big tubes with TVs on the ceiling and charging docks for phones, communal showers etc., they are also underground which makes land less of an issue, and I think it would make more sense to come up with creative ideas like that.

          I don’t see why we couldn’t make better use marquee tents, for example. And I don’t think we should be queasy about letting workers sleep in their actual workplace, especially in big cities. I actually think a lot of people would enjoy that. They could use the time they saved by not having to travel to pay towards the costs of putting them up so that the employers would actually make a profit from it too.

          • Dave Price

            Hmm yeah, Hatuey – for irony to work in written form you have to leave some clues that the opinions expressed aren’t to be taken at face value. The simple fact that no human being with healthy emotional response would hold the views you espouse (sorry, ‘espouse’) is not enough: it might just be that you really are a sociopath.

            I bet you got some bewildered, not to say terrified, looks from your pupils whenever you tried this on in the classroom. Though better than bored yawns I guess.

          • Hatuey

            Dave Price: “you have to leave some clues that the opinions expressed aren’t to be taken at face value.”

            Hmmmmmmmm

            Where’s the fun in that?

          • Bayard

            “It’s the relative scarcity that makes houses valuable and drives prices up.”
            Have you ever stopped to think, 1. who wants me to believe this? and 2. what evidence is there for this?
            C’mon, it’s exactly the same process as most people on this blog have been applying to the Skripal/Syria story.

          • Leonard Young

            Hatuey: No, it’s not about caring more for one or the other. It’s about your extraordinarily narcissistic entiltlement attitude. By the way, you do realise I hope that those who rent actually pay in their lifetime a much higher rate for shelter than property owners do. In fact within a given salary range, those who rent pay on average twice in a lifetime than those who get to “own”. The point is, you seem to think that protecting your serendipitous inflated property value is more important than almost anything else.

            This identifies you as someone who fundamentally subscribes to making money out of simply sitting on property as the ultimate goal. This is a very unhealthy goal, not just for you, but for entire nations. The exclusive reliance on property by itself as the yardstick of perceived wealth is the very reason why almost every northern European state is in dire economic and social trouble. Because diverting capital away from productive activity into solely property-based investment starves cash from much more productive endeavors. It swipes billions away from investment that would improve infrastructure, health, education, agriculture, research, science and many other beneficial activity.

            It locks up countless billions in static assets whose perceived value takes up to and beyond half of everyone’s disposable income. In that regard it is spectacularly wasteful, and all for the sake of people like you who appear to believe it gives you a better life. It doesn’t. It just gives you the ILLUSION that you’re alright jack. But you are increasingly surrounded by others who didn’t have the luck you had in playing the market. They are just as (perhaps more) valid than you are.

            I suggest you look at housing policy in Germany and Holland up to about ten years ago. These are two countries which have until recently achieve much greater sophistication in infrastructure and economic equality than we have, but sadly they are now adopting the UK model of shoving every penny into property assets which add precisely zero to any improvement in actual wealth.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      Hagar,

      It wasn’t always like this, even in my lifetime. I had almost every childhood disease going since birth…whooping cough, bronchitus, mumps, measles, german measles, scarlet fever, tonsillitis, appendicitis, and also I decided to eat a very large bumble bee when I was two, and the bee wasn’t impressed and stung me on my tongue. Most of my family were mad, and One of my older brothers decided to swing me around very fast, until he managed to dislocate my arm from my shoulder.

      Yet, my Mum and The NHS were completely brilliant, solved all these little problems, and I also received an extremely high quality of education for free. I have been almost completely healthy since the age of 8, well except the mad bit, but even for that, they did not succeed in admitting me. I wasn’t causing anyone any problems, and simply kept quiet, when they were asking me, the most bizarre questions, I didn’t react with fury and rage, I just gave them an exceedingly puzzled look. Well of course I argued with the Psychiatrist a bit, but mainly to suggest to him, that he was the one that was mad. Eventually he agreed with me, and said I was now fit for work. He signed me off as normal, and my employer not only accepted his diagnosis, but then promoted me again.

      But all that was a very long time ago. I don’t think I could cope with these mad people in control now.

      How the hell can you have a high level project meeting, trying to resolve complex problems, when on the other side of the table are the likes of Theresa May, Boris Johnson, (“Shut up and Go Away” Gavin Williamson) and all the imbeciles who are in control of The Media?

      It seems to me, that they actually believe, their own lies and propaganda. They don’t even realise they are mad. I am not surprised the Russians quote Alice-in-Wonderland too them, trying to calm them down, and suggest a cup of very strong coffee instead.

      Tony

      • Ophelia Ball

        “It wasn’t always like this, even in my lifetime”

        <BINGO!

        what he said….

      • Hagar

        Now you have to pay for your education, Tony. And your health, to a certain degree (prescriptions England).

        The main point is, you were dependent on others to save you, feed you, nurse you, house you, and love you, the magic ingredient to restore you to be able to do all that you have done. And to all accounts you have been very successful. Well done you!
        We all contributed to your situation. Do you realise that?

        I know a man who is “not the full shilling”, yet, he has saved the lives of others, how? He has a very rare blood type. One day he was working away on a farm when the Police called for him, “come on Alex you are needed at the hospital a woman with your blood type is having a baby and she needs a blood transfusion.
        “They put me in a bed beside her and let the blood flow from me to her. When she had enough blood they offered me a cup of tea, he said, I don’t have time for tea I need to get back to the farm to milk the cows”.

        You see the cows were dependent on Alex to milk them, the shop was dependent on the milk to sell, and the customer was dependent on the milk to feed her family, and your milkman was dependent on the milk to put into bottles to deliver to you Tony.

        Got it yet?

        Or, are you more concerned with the value of your house staying high, as opposed to having somewhere to live while you drink milk with your cereals? Plus all the other things you eat and wear but don’t produce yourself.

        • Hatuey

          “You see the cows were dependent on Alex to milk them”

          If that’s true it’s only because he stole the cows’ children.

          • Hagar

            All the cows “children” as you described calves, cannot be allowed to grow to be mated and produce more “children” (calves) or the country would be overrun with cattle. The “children” (calves) need to be allowed to grow for meat.
            Also, some of the milk is needed to make powdered milk to feed babies (children) for mothers who will not breast feed their own children. Some women have inverted nipples, and some just do not like breast feeding, so, where are they going to get milk from? Steal it from cows!

          • Hatuey

            Hagar: “The “children” (calves) need to be allowed to grow for meat..“

            Try explaining that to their mothers as an act of altruism. Or Hindus for that matter.

            Anyway, I think your circle of interdependent love is now officially broken.

        • Hagar

          Furthermore, Craig Murray was dependent on me, you, and many more, to stave off the Law Suit he was subjected to.
          I would contribute again if needed.
          How about you?

          • Hatuey

            I like Craig Murray but I wouldn’t give him a penny unless he proved to me that he was poorer than I was. By all means invite him to send me bank statements and details of any property and shares he owns.

          • Hagar

            Why don’t you prove to us you are prosperous enough to be more understanding than me. Show us your bank statements and titles to property and your share portfolio if you have one, and your tax code. Or, UB40.

            I don’t speak Hindi or any other language of India.

            Love conquers all! That is official. And it can’t be broken. Why would you want it to be broken? Let me guess, you don’t have any love in your life. Maybe you don’t have any money to give to CM, or anyone else, for that matter.
            One can only give when one has. Do you need a sub?

          • Hagar

            The people of India are smaller than first generation Indians living in America. Maybe they would benefit from eating their cattle.
            Religion does all kinds of things to those who adhere to it.

            Maybe religion should be banned???

          • Hatuey

            Hagar, you came on here like David Koresh talking about interdependence and the meaning of life. Now you are boasting about being rich, killing baby cows, and your generosity, whilst mocking poor people.

            You’re like a political meerkat, looking this way and then that, wondering which hole to jump into if a predator appears. The good news is you have many to choose from, having dug so many for yourself.

          • Hagar

            You could make a great politician. You turn everything to suit your self, regardless of the facts.

            This war baby is off to bed without hot milk or any other drink.

            Even at my advanced age I can still suck, Tony.

        • Hagar

          The Human Race is the only animal to drink another animals milk, after the baby stage. Conditioned you see.

        • Hagar

          Tony, buy a water alkaliser and ioniser and some glass containers with a seal to store the water, not in the fridge. Drink it at room temperature.
          Ditch the milk.

  • Ultraviolet

    Interesting observation borrowed from a poster on the Independent:

    The website for Wiltshire Police has photos of its officers in the links off of the following URL:

    https://www.wiltshire.police.uk/article/610/About-Us

    They do not appear to have a Nick Bailey.

    Searching the site for “Bailey” turns up just 2 results, both statements by Chief Constable Kier Pritchard.

    More evidence that Nick Bailey does not exist.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Ultraviolet April 21, 2018 at 17:56
      Interesting link. As there has been speculating that the Skripals, who were reportedly gesticulating into the air, May have been poisoned from a drone.
      From the above link: ‘Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)’:
      https://www.wiltshire.police.uk/article/795/Unmanned-Aerial-Vehicles-UAVs-
      ‘…Home About Us Who we are and what we do
      Wiltshire Police uses Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), commonly known as drones, to provide air support to officers on the ground.
      Drones are becoming more common in policing but they will not replace the police helicopter which is provided by the National Police Air Service (NPAS).

      What kind of drones do Wiltshire Police use?
      We have two DJI Inspire 1 drones…..’

        • Paul Barbara

          @ bj April 21, 2018 at 19:57
          It’s just one of the possibilities that has been suggested – I think it is doubtful myself. But giving the speculation, it seemed a good idea to point out that Salisbury police do have, and use, drones. It is the first time I have heard of the use of police drones in the UK. It seems they started to roll them out last year: ‘Police drone unit joins the beat in the UK’:
          https://newatlas.com/uk-drone-police/50507/

    • Bayleaf

      If DS Bailey had recently been taken on from another force, that would be a bit suspicious. If it were from the Met, that would be extremely suspicious, indeed.

    • Fundamentalist Skeptic

      Interesting. The princes of darkness and their minions like to play word games sometimes. “Nick Bailey” means “prison castle wall”. I wonder what it means, a reference to the imprisonment of the Skripals perhaps?

      • Mochyn69

        I know exactly what you mean.

        Both words mean jail, prison.

        Nick = chiefly British Slang A prison or police station.

        Bailey = the outer wall of a castle.

        And Skripal’ is Ukrainian for “Fiddler” = BRITISH informal
        a person who cheats or swindles, especially one indulging in petty theft.

        QED. It’s all just a piece of theatre. The question is Why???

        >

    • Gideon Blackmarsh

      I’ve done a bit more rooting around since I posted the Wiltshire Police link on The Independent.

      Sgt Louis McCoy (https://twitter.com/WiltspoliceLM) tweeted on March 8th:
      This is Nick, he’s my friend, he’s trending on twitter right now, big shout out to you mate. Let’s get you fit and back! Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey #PoliceFamily #JobLikeNoOther @wiltshirepolice

      Unless his Twitter feed is an elaborate hoax, Sgt McCoy does appear to exist, but there is very little mention of him on the Wiltshire Police site either. So far all I’ve found relating to him is a story about a WW2 grenade being found in Jubilee Lake, coincidentally(?) also on March 8th. In fact, Sgt McCoy tweeted about that immediately before his “This is Nick” tweet.

      The Huffington Post (again on March 8th) gave a little info on why Bailey was awarded the Certificate of Excellence in 2016 (as shown in that ubiquitous photo of him). Apparently it was for his work for over two years to bring a case against a multiple rapist who was active from the early 1970s until 2014:
      https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/police-officer-russia-poison_uk_5aa1662be4b0d4f5b66e9318

      I don’t know what to make of it all. It seems bizarre that a much loved member of the Wiltshire Police who has been with them since 2002 would not have a single mention on their website were it not for his involvement in the Skripal saga.

      Interestingly, whilst nosing around the Twitter feeds of various members of the Wiltshire Police Force, I did come across a number of tweets from them complaining about the journalists camped outside the Baileys’ house. Perhaps some members of the press have been attempting to investigate this story after all, despite all appearances to the contrary.

      • Ultraviolet

        Hi Gideon, good to see you here. Hope you don’t mind me nicking your work!

        The mass censorship on the Indie comments threats is getting really sinister.

        • Gideon Blackmarsh

          Hi Ultraviolet. No, I don’t mind at all. Many of the people on this blog are much better at the detective work than I am, so if it prompts any of them to continue investigating, that’s fine by me. The only thing I know for certain in this whole affair is that the Government’s position started with an outright lie (that it must have been the work of Russia because only Russia had the motive and means) and they’ve added to that with further lies, contradictions and absurdities. Whatever the truth is, the chance of us hearing it from the British Government is zero.

          I agree about The Independent and wish they’d do something to improve their comment flagging so it can’t be abused to censor awkward questions or viewpoints. It can be a real chore trying to comment there at times.

  • Ophelia Ball

    The BBC clowns are so effin’ biased, it beggars belief

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-43850979

    next thing you know there will be a photo of a poor innocent child being cradled in the heroic arms of a noble White Helmet ‘volunteer’ embossed on out TV licences!

    “Western officials fear that evidence of the alleged double chemical attack may have been tampered with. However, important traces of toxic chemicals would probably still be present in the environment and in the remains of victims, Alastair Hay, professor of environmental toxicology at the University of Leeds, told AFP news agency.

    “Nerve agents like sarin can be present in the environment for many weeks after use and particularly if you look near the site where a weapon has exploded,” he said.”

    Unless no traces of nerve agents or chemical weapons are found, in which case the headline will read “Russia destroyed the evidence!”

    Anyhow, Assad is an Animal!, forget about about Yulia, forget about Dr Stephen Davies, forget about Grenfell Towers and whatever you do don’t ask any silly questions about Brexit and the Irish Border

    • Silvio

      The BBC can go have sexual congress with itself (IMHO).

      Former FBI translator and now whistleblower Sibel Edmonds: They Lied About Iraq, They Lied About Libya, They’re Lying About Syria! in a short and to the point video:
      https://youtu.be/Cku8yc6NBEc

        • glenn_nl

          Another possibility you overlooked is that she was always flaky and hopelessly unprepared, but you failed to notice that fact. Far less dramatic I know, but vastly more likely.

    • Kerch'ee Kerch'ee Coup

      We are clearly not supposed to distinguish between Bashar and ,his father,Hafez.Although the Baathist state apparatus has been retained, Bashar had been opening up the country and restraing the excesses of the Alaouite -led security services, evolving a crony-capitalist model.Certainly ,there is widespread support across much of the country for him and his wife at least as symbols of the popular will for Syria to remain one country. Many political exiles left in the 70s and 80s and are out of touch with the progress being made before 2011. The proposals for more democratic elections have been ignored by the MSM.
      I am only surprised no fellow ophthalmologist has come forward from the London hospital where he did his residency to tell us how ‘the monster’ experimented with eyeballs under pressure until explosion or injecting irritating color dyes
      I for one long to return to a Damascus without shellfire from the Ghouta enclave, a rebuilt Aleppo,restored Palmyra and the Krak des Chevaliers without sniper fire targetting passers -by, and believe that is likeliest to happen provided he continues in his elected office.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Ophelia Ball April 21, 2018 at 18:21
      Well, we may never know, because the ‘unbiased’ OPCW refuse to visit and test the so-called CW facilities that were destroyed with the West’s cruise missiles, or even to hear the testimonies of the ‘survivors’ of the alleged CW attack.

  • APOL

    Yes, ‘Animal Assad’ s an awkward phrase to English ears.
    It sticks out like the proverbial thumb.
    But in so far as Assad means lion, the noblest of animals, the phrase
    takes a very different colour to Syrians.
    Curious.
    Was it done on purpose…message in a bottle?

    • Ophelia Ball

      APOL – yes, upon second thoughts I like your context-sensitive approach to the interpretation of adjectives. It is indeed the case that Assad would be associated with a Lion in contemporary Syrian culture, and the same may in fact hold true in Great Britain and the USA too:

      – Theresa May – Reptile
      – That prat Williamson – Worm
      – Boris Johnson – poisonous jellyfish
      – Donald Trump – Orang Utan
      – Nikki Haley – loud mouthed cretin

      I think this line of semantic reasoning warrants further exploration

      • Paul Barbara

        @ Ophelia Ball April 21, 2018 at 19:03
        Careful! You may get accused of anti-semanticism.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      APOL, His wife is sweet, and “Animal Assad” did work for several British Eye Hospitals as an Eye Surgeon where he was trained.

      At about the same time (possibly exactly the same time), it was him that examined my eyes, and said there is nothing wrong with them – except you are shortsighted, and you have been wearing these brand newly developed soft contact lenses. They are not safe, and the chemicals in them are reacting to your eyes.

      Go back to your doctor (who also said there was nothing wrong with me), and your optician , and ask her to prescribe you hard contact lenses.

      So I did. I didn’t think he was an animal, and I know a lot of lies have been written about him and his goverment, even by the CIA infiltrated and funded Amnesty International.

      He seems a nice man to me, and I am totally convinced he has the vast support of most of The Syrian People who just want to return to peace.

      Just look at what The Americans and us British Did?

      Why did we do that? Who’s idea was it? What was the purpose? What has it achieved?

      Why won’t even The Guardian tell the truth? or even The BBC? – Have all you journalists been brainwashed? I know some of your parents.

      https://www.moonofalabama.org/images6/dresdenraqqa.jpg

      Tony

        • Paul Barbara

          @ Tony_0pmoc April 21, 2018 at 20:22
          That’s why it is always a good idea to post the exact headline of the article, as well as the link. The headline in the search engine will almost invariably come up with the article/video.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Summary of what I think happenned on Friday 13th April 2018 (this may not be completely correct)

    Americans to Russians – We are about to attack Syria with over 300 missiles, but will wait until Saturday 14th, cos of all these stupid numerology conspiracy theories,making most people think we are mad.

    Russians to Americans – If you kill one Russian – and here are the locations, where we are…We will repond, and we will sink your Battleships, shoot down your aircraft, and try and bomb your submarines (we know where they are)

    Americans to Russians – O.K. – we will try our best to miss all Russians, but please don’t shoot back or we will nuke you.

    The Russians think about nuking them first, but think the Americans may get a bit upset.

    Early hours of Saturday 14th

    Over 100 misilles are launched either 103 or 105, if you count The French ones that missfired

    The Russians watched and didn’t do anything. The Syrians shot down over 70 of their missiles, but some were targetted at The Civilian Damascus Airport (all of which were shot down)

    After an hour or so of not doing anything, The Russians were now seriously annoyed (the agreement was that you would just shoot your missiles into The Desert, and just hit two deserted buildings that are not in use. We have told you all the safe targets to hit, and you try and bomb Damascus Airport…??? wtf is wrong with you?

    Then all The Russian Aircraft were launched, and they were under distinct intructions to shoot back if attacked, and also if they shoot at you – drop bombs on the Battleships and the submarines.

    The Americans still had 200 missiles to shoot, but decided against. They apologised to The Russians on the hotline and said please don’t bomb our ships.

    Russians to Americans – O.K. we will call our fighter aircraft back, and not attack you, if you promise Never to do it again.

    Tony

  • Ken Burch

    Excellent analysis. The treatment of Jeremy Corbyn by some of his party’s MPs is comparable only to the treachery the Labour Right visited on Michael Foot in the early Eighties, when they actually formed a new party to stand against Labour candidates even though they KNEW that all this new party could achieve was to make it impossible to remove the Tories from office until Labour had moved so far to the right that the change of government in name was all but meaningless.

    The stupidest thing in all of this is that there is no anti-Corbynite MP who has even the potential to lead Labour to a better showing than they would make under Corbyn. They have no one to offer with any personal popularity, with any capacity of generating enthusiasm among the electorate, with any ideas that could possibly help anyone.

  • giyane

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/6106793/defence-chief-theresa-may-british-troops-syria-bloodbath/

    ” BRITAIN’S former defence chief today calls on Theresa May to send British troops into Syria to halt the Assad regime’s final massacre. The nation’s ex-top warrior Lord Richards warns hundreds of thousands are trapped and face impending fresh slaughter in the next few weeks.”

    Theresa May’s government funded, diplomatically and militarily assisted these brutal jihadist. She also did sleazy WMD deals with Saudi Arabia and others to turn a blind eye to the jihadists war crimes in order to finance her failing economy, which has never recovered from Thatcherite policies of the 1980s.

    Two Tory women , Thatcher and May, with not a single working brain-cell between them, have got us into this mess. If the UK refuses to protect its very own darling Al Queenida regiments of Islamists, they will turn against the West and its false promises. If Mrs May sends in troops to defend the Islamists they will be kidnapped and used to blackmail the USUKIS governments. Honestly both of them would have been better off staying at home and doing the dishes. Not my opinion, the opinion of the fascist jihadists.

    • Rhys Jaggar

      I remain to be convinced that David Richards is a top ‘warrior’. I am also yet to be convinced that genes for warriors co-segregate wth genes for wisdom and discernment.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ giyane April 21, 2018 at 19:47
      Where was ‘Lord’ Richards when Fallujah was under siege? Or Sana? Or Gaza? Or East Timor under brutal Indonesian occupation?

  • extremebuilder

    Just watched Roger Waters saying his bit at Barcelona, well done him. I ask where are all those other heroes of mine who seem to have taken the money and run? I bought your LP`s and went to your concerts and bought into your `anti-establishment` mantra. I helped to give you that `rock star` lifestyle you`ve had for 50 years. Get up of your arses and speak out as you used to.

    • Sharp Ears

      Roger Waters is such a threat to the liars and warmongers that Jonathan Freedland has gone in like an attack dog on him. Extremely poisonous stuff.

      ‘The more egregious example is also the more serious. At a concert in Barcelona, the former Pink Floyd star Roger Waters accused the Syria Civil Defence, or White Helmets – the volunteers who pull survivors from the rubble of bomb attacks, and are widely credited with saving thousands of civilian lives – of being “a fake organisation that exists only to create propaganda for the jihadists and terrorists”.

      That claim, which has been repeatedly debunked, was instantly applauded and spread by the same crowd of pro-Russia voices on the far left and far right who have served so dutifully as Assad’s online cheerleaders. To them, Waters was a hero for daring to speak an unpopular truth. For everyone else, a once admired musician had joined the ranks of conspiracist cranks and apologists for a murderous dictator.’

      There is much more of the same.

      The great divide of our times is not left v right, but true v false
      The denigration of Robert Mueller and the White Helmets shows the extent to which provable facts are now under siege
      Sat 21 Apr 2018
      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/20/trump-us-syria-truth-tribal-robert-mueller-white-helmets-factse

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Sharp Ears,

        Roger Water’s apparently supported by that very rich pretty Israeli girl Natalie Portman, who said what she said, but then was forced to back down and retract. What on earth do they have on her? She seems a nice girl to me. Did they say – you may be rich, but we will blow your head off, if you don’t retract?

        https://sputniknews.com/viral/201804211063780659-natalie-portman-netanyahu-israel-boycott/

        Does she still get her $2 Million Dollar Prize, even though she refuses to go to Israel to collect it?

        Tony

        • Ultraviolet

          I think Natalie is simply struggling with the fact that she does not want to be a political figure, but she is repulsed by the current political leadership of Israel. The award of the Genesis prize put her on the spot, because she could have been seen to be endorsing Netanyahu, whom she strongly opposes. But she never chose to make herself a political figures, and I don’t blame her for wanting to focus on what she does – being a talent in the film world.

  • Sharp Ears

    Nick Robinson replscess Marr tomorrow BBC2 9am
    https://mobile.twitter.com/bbcnickrobinson/status/987756497303232513/photo/1

    Justice Secretary David Gauke (his 5th job since 2010 -DWP and Treasury jobs before)
    Shadow Foreign Sec Emily Thornberry
    Poet Benjamin Zephaniah,
    Diver Tom Daley
    Actor Nicola Walker

    Note Cleverly has a go at Emily Thornberry in the comments that follow.

    Theresa’s discarded SPAD Katie Perrior reviews the ‘papers’ with Kayla Moran MP, LD Oxford W and Abingdon.

  • wisedupearly

    Simply put, payment for services rendered.
    PM May provides the casus belli for the America missile attack on Syria to advance Israeli interests, mainly war with Iran, and suddenly the Israeli 5th column in UK starts attacking Corbyn, PM May’s main rival.

  • giyane

    We call it ” fitna ” when everyone goes barmy. In Islam you’re allowed to take yourself to the jungle in times of fitna, to protect your life and your sanity. Right now, because it’s soon going to be Ramadhan the fitna in the Muslim community from supporters of the Jihadists in Syria is cooling down. For one month they will stop posing as Rambo, and do their duty to Allah and allow others to attend the mosque peacefully.

    But is it a good idea to sail to places where the fitna is at a very high intensity, like Libya, Somalia, Gaza or Turkey, Yemen, or Tunisia? There are so many issues about refugees.

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