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1,942 thoughts on “Craig is in Jacobabad

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    • able

      There was a suicide attack against Shi’ites that left at least 22 dead. It is also a centre of “honour” killings.

      Sounds like a lovely place.

    • Laguerre

      I had some doubts about the Wiki etymology of Jacobabad as derived from John Jacob. Arabic/Persian/Urdu would be Yaqubabad. I suspect that many of the locals, never having heard of some obscure Scottish 19th century officer, probably pronounce it like that anyway.

      But I thought the most interesting point of the Wiki article was that it is the site of one of the three most important US airbases for bombing Afghanistan back into the Stone Age, just coincidentally located at the local airport. Knowing Craig though, he’ll be interested more in the obscure Scottish officer of the East India Company.

        • Kay

          Seriously, though, Clark, the time’s very long since passed when this – otherwise indispensable – blog needed a mute button in the comments section.

          Something cookie-based would be ideal for the unregistered, mods, if you’re of a mind to indulge the suggestion.

          • michael norton

            The cost of extending Edinburgh’s controversial tram scheme has jumped by 25% to £207m.

            Edinburgh City Council is considering lengthening the tram line by 2.8 miles

            that’s almost a hundred million a mile?

          • able

            There was “Habbabreak” but nobody used it and it was a failure. In the end people had to face up to criticism rather than sticking their fingers in their ears and ignoring it.

          • pete

            Greasemonkey is still around but the habbabreak script available for it has been removed from greasyfork.org, which is sad as it would have been useful to remove those useless comments some would prefer not to see.

          • Blunderbuss

            “4 x Cheaper than HS2 then, pro rata”

            OK, lets build a tramway from London to Birmingham. Running at 25 mph is a lot more fuel-efficient than running at 250 mph.

            I think the relationship is logarithmic, so a tenfold reduction in speed should give a 100-fold reduction in fuel consumption.

          • Bayard

            “OK, lets build a tramway from London to Birmingham. Running at 25 mph is a lot more fuel-efficient than running at 250 mph.”
            That wouldn’t achieve what HS2 is intended to achieve, though.

          • Clark

            Deb O’Nair, you’re right, but I’ve been highly critical of various comments from others, which didn’t seem fair when there such stuff being posted. Also I’d ignored it a lot and just lost patience.

          • Clark

            Blunderbuss, the power dissipated to air resistance is proportional to velocity cubed. But journey time is inversely proportional to velocity, so total energy dissipated to air resistance over a given distance is proportional to velocity squared.

            Friction (or for a train, “rolling resistance”) doesn’t vary with velocity, so neither does the energy dissipated over a given distance.

            Trains have very low rolling resistance, and a small front surface area compared with their capacity, so they’re very efficient.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ michael norton February 8, 2019 at 22:44
            That’s some weird maths. More like approx. £14.8m a mile.

          • michael norton

            The extension of the Edinburgh Tram works out close to seventy four million per extra mile.
            £74,000,000 / extra mile

          • Kay

            There are arguments for and against a selective btl mute but there’s far too much tawdry, playbook-driven blackguarding, here, which is itself a kind of deliberately bad faith echo chamber and, at times, a real crapflood.

            How about mute with an auto-expire time limit?

  • Brenda Steele

    First time I have really looked at a map of Pakistan and surrounding countries. Queried the journey from Karachi to Jacobabad to get a sense of scale.

    Very interesting. I shall look on News from Pakistan with new eyes from now on.

  • N_

    Brief note on Brexit

    Many are saying that it boils down to Noel Edmonds’s “Deal or No Deal” and that “Deal” might be “May’s” or “Something Else”, and then there’s also “Extend” (pending whatever) and “Revoke”.

    Actually this isn’t true.

    There’s going to be a transition period anyway, and lots more negotiations, and “Backstop” is proposed as what will happen if those further negotiations don’t result in something else. Amid all the talk and the buzzphrases (“backstop”, “alternative arrangements”, “meaningful vote”, blah blah), this is often forgotten.

    So they could have an arrangement where they go into a transition period, even one with a fixed end, and they leave the agreement on what comes afterwards for later, without a backstop. Is that a “Deal” or is it a “No Deal”? Depends how you look at it. It would be a fudge. It’s half Deal, half No Deal. The Noel Edmonds optic breaks down! Something like this is likely. And exit on 29 March is very likely.

    Just saying. Sometimes the “conversation” is quite interesting. Sometimes it gets totally bogged down and as far as the “conversation” goes, people are just throwing words around. That is what is largely happening now

    So…hot tip: exit will happen on 29 March.

    • N_

      I should amend that to say that of course if there is a “No Deal” crashout then there won’t be a “transition period” in the same sense. But even then, with a crashout the exact lines along which it breaks will be determined partly by how much money can be made by what route within about 24 hours by a few multibillionaires…

      “Transition” or “no transition” is probably a more sensible optic than “deal or no deal”. In any event, there will be negotiations after 29 March. Underneath the surface, the question is “How much will be planned, and how much will be the operation of the rulers’ old friend, the ‘invisible hand’ of the financial markets?”

  • Laguerre

    Extremely violent demonstrators as usual. On the telly it looks like a thousand or two, max. We’ll have to see how many really, later on. Would any national leader step down for that? Brexiters who think that’s a threat are out of their minds.

    • N_

      Recent demonstrations in France have not been “extremely violent”. How many people have been killed? I think it’s about 10, including some in road crashes and also including an 80-year-old lady in Marseilles called Zineb Romdhane whom the police killed by firing a tear gas canister that hit her in the head when she was in her home closing her shutters. If you don’t want to get out on the street and fight the state after that’s happened, there’s something wrong with you.

      I’m not wholly sure what’s going on with those road crashes.

      I believe most of the people killed have been demonstrators. In any case, I have not heard of a single cop or other combatant on the side of the regime being killed yet.

  • Laguerre

    Well, I’m not very impressed by your support for far right violent thugs. It was the thugs who attacked the parliament building this morning. If you attack, then there can be injuries. You can’t blame them on someone else. But you have some bizarre idealised notions which have no relationship to anything but your head. The gilets jaunes started off as populism, apolitical, but quickly acquired violent thuggery, and have now veered towards the far right, hand in hand with the near fascists in Italy. Faragism at its best. I was present at one event, and I can tell you they were very violent, though others I have seen personally were not.

    • Jack

      Rightwing? Jesus, soon you will tell us that there are russians doing the violence (as Macron earlier this week did!).
      You want to propagate rather than adressing the facts that civilian people are injured for 3 months due a dictatorlike president.
      Anyone should read Laguerre’s comments and understand how people justify violent oppression.

    • able

      You mean they are not clamouring for more taxation or more Europe, or even for turning France into Africa, so you have deemed them to be far-right?

    • N_

      I was present at one event, and I can tell you they were very violent

      Very violent demonstrations cause deaths. They literally leave blood on the streets. So do very violent state responses to demonstrations. Usually it’s the latter that precedes the former, unless you believe the Daily f***ing Heil. How many people did you see carrying firearms or gas grenades and which side were they on?

    • N_


      some bizarre idealised notions

      Like your notion of “violence”? Just look at your chosen handle. Do you think war is cool?

    • Brian c

      I”ll assume you have been misinformed rather than being cynically dishonest. The French yellow vest movement is not far right and has no association with neo fascists in Italy. Some yellow vests were recently invited to meet with the Italian deputy PM Luigi do Maio. He is leader of the anti austerity 5 star movement. He invited them because the yellow vests are a movement of the hard pressed working class whose raison detre is fighting the austerity regime of the former banker Emmanuel Macron. Their protests are about economic policies. If they were a movement of the far right the focus of their protests would be immigration, Muslims and so on.

      • N_

        For Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s take on the gilets jaunes, click here.

        He denounces the state brutality against the gilets jaunes. He predicts convergence between the gilets jaunes’ movement and trade union militancy, in a push to “block the economy”. Or if I can put it in more traditional terms: a general strike.

        He calls the gilets jaunes’ movement a “citizens’ revolution”.

        Can people please stop saying it’s wholly far right and anti-immigrant.

          • able

            Neil is just trying to make the events fit with his ideology. He actually supports violent overthrow of the state and the implementation of a communist system and wants desperately to see in Paris the beginnings of a world revolution 🙂

          • N_

            What do you mean “Mélenchon got it wrong”? We are talking about the leader of France’s largest current left wing movement which, as you can see, is supportive of the gilets jaunes.

          • Jack


            True and that is what makes these claims so bizarre.
            It is the propaganda that fool some people that are at work.

            Macron: dont support Yellow vests, they are right-wing, they are russians!

          • Laguerre

            Jack, great, you managed to find one flic not in uniform but carrying a shield. Perhaps he was cold, and had brought his civilian padded jacket, over his uniform.

          • Jack


            (Note what I said, “in the beginning of the video”) I am talking about the 15 or so so called police in the very start of the clip.
            The more you defend Macron the more desperate you get. Take it easy, we dont talk about “you” here, we dislike Macron. You dont have to be here defending him and his regime.

          • Laguerre

            Jack, frankly who cares if some of them are wearing jeans, as I now see you are right over the jean-wearing? You’re making a big thing out of nothing.

          • Jack


            If you are going to insult me, please write in proper english so I could atleast comprenhend your slurs.
            From what I could understand from your post, is that you are fine with civilian clothed “police” running with batons and other guns.

      • Laguerre

        Brian c

        You evidently don’t know the current situation. The gilets jaunes have slid from mainly apolitical to mainly Ukip-like, but with more violence, and people from outside dependent on media claiming to know better than people in actual contact has the value of a mouse’s fart, frankly.

        • Brian c

          UKIP are PRO austerity PRO banker Thatcherites obsessed by Muslims.
          So forgive me but I dont think i will place much stock by your reportage. It is transparently unreliable and will need to improve massively if you are to generate support for Macron.

          • Laguerre

            Why should I want to generate support for Macron? I’m just a commentator.

            Anyway, just to wrap up, according to BFM TV and LCI, the official figures for today were 4000 in Paris and 28K round the country. The guy who was supposed to have lost his hand, actually lost four fingers when he was taking part in a forceful attempt to get into the Assemblée Nationale. No doubt someone slammed a gate on his fingers, even if that is different from what the gilets jaunes claim. You don’t lose four fingers from a plastic bullet, but you do from having an iron gate slammed on them.

            Excuse me for saying so, but this is far from what is necessary to overturn a government, and less than last week, though not much.

            What people need to understand is that the mentality of the gilets jaunes and of the poor end of Brexiters is pretty much identical – people feeling abandoned and left behind by globalisation. I’ve got a list of demands from the département of Vésoul, which one of my colleagues sent out, it covers absolutely everything in sight, 25 demands or more, including Frexit but also exit from NATO. I have a lot of sympathy for people’s suffering, but it’s a systemic problem of Western capitalism. The basic problem is that people need income to buy the products the capitalists are making. The capitalists haven’t bothered with this part – they think you can just beat people down, and put them on the dole, and still continue to make the profits (with extra cream off from the hedge fund managers). A long term change in capitalist mentality is required. Getting rid of Macron won’t achieve it, as neither will Brexit. The difference between the two is that the gilets jaunes are a minority movement, but the Brexiters are in power in Westminster, and can destroy Britain by their antics.

          • Laguerre

            Norton, I dealt with this question in my 18:44. The claim was not a grenade, but a form of plastic bullet.

          • Jack

            michael norton

            Silly, he only lost “four fingers”, not a grenade, just a soft “rubber bullet.”

            You cannot make this violent justification against demonstrators up…

          • Laguerre

            Jack, the guy wouldn’t have lost his fingers if he hadn’t been involved in a violent attempt to invade the parliament. Just think how that would have played out in Westminster square. The guy would have been shot dead before he got near.

          • Jack


            Blaming the victim now? You have lost it completely now with this justification of maiming civilian protesters. Vile.

          • N

            I thought it was a rubber pellet grenade that exploded when he courageously tried to defend himself and other demonstrators by picking it up and throwing it back at the police. If you do that, you’ve got to be fast.

          • michael norton

            Why would Macron have anti terror people fighting and maiming French citoyens on the streets of Paris?

            Does this mean Macron considers the demonstrators terror people?

          • Laguerre

            I am not a defeatist, I just prefer address to the real problems, as in my 18:44, not wasting time on pointless protests. We’re not even close to addressing the real problems in the West. On MoA, I always address the problems of the peoples of the Middle East, not supporting US/UK meddling, which last is done for entirely capricious reasons. That’s easier to tackle.

          • Laguerre

            Actually something useful might come out of Macron’s reaction to the gilets jaunes protests. He’s a reactive sort of guy, not a fossilised dinosaur like May. And in France you’re forced to react in a way that you aren’t in UK. I don’t agree with the characterisation earlier of Macron as a Rothschild president. He only worked for them for two years (as opposed to May’s 13 years at the BoE). He’s much more a traditional product of the ENA (Ecole Nationale d’Administration), where he must have spent more time (7 years?), the traditional upbringing of French leaders. Though I don’t suppose the classes included how to deal with a revolution, though it’s always out there in France.

            Macron has certainly had a set-back with the gilets jaunes. Better someone who reacts, rather than the dictates of a dinosaur like May.

          • Jack

            Theresa May act upon a referendum, something Macron would ever dare having in France on any issue that threatens his regime. Also, Theresa May’s support is still higher than the Rotschild one in France but I guess “democracy” doesnt mean anything in Elysée Palace and its supporters these days.

          • Laguerre

            Jack, May insists upon a referendum of dubious value, of majority slight, but refuses the democracy of a new vote, now we know more. Evidently, you’re opposed to democratic expression, cos you might lose. Only the sacred referendum is of value, any other expression of popular opinion can be thrown in the bin.

          • Jack


            Apparently you dont understand how democracy works. You want to have another referendum because you dont respect the outcome of the referendum that was.

        • N_

          @Laguerre – You accuse others of ignorance while calling the gilets jaunes “UKIP-like”.

          Well let’s look at what UKIP’s politics are.

          UKIP wants to withdraw benefits from non-British citizens until they have worked here for 5 years. They support British membership of NATO. They support Trident. They want a Commonwealth Free Trade Agreement. They wants to abolish stamp duty. They want to abolish inheritance tax. They want to increase military spending.

          Do the gilets jaunes want to withdraw benefits from non-French citizens?
          Do they support French NATO membership?
          Do they support French nuclear weapons?
          Do they want a free trade agreement between France and former colonies such as Algeria once France has left the EU?
          Do they want to abolish the huge taxes that are paid when buying a house in France?
          Do they want to abolish inheritance tax?
          Do they want to increase French military spending?

  • Republicofscotland

    The front, I mean company (Seaborne Freight) that has no ferries, no experience and no port has had its contract revoked.

    It’s rumoured that Failing Grayling has approached Captain Pugwash, with the intent on hiring out his vessel. 😀

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Isa February 9, 2019 at 13:49
      Moreno is a snake-in-the-grass traitor – he pretended to support the PAIS Alliance of Rafael Correa, but had obviously been bought out by the Yanks, and filled his cabinet with the opposition.
      The ‘Evil Empire’ up north is pulling all the stops out – Argentina, Ecuador, Brazil (and of course Haiti and Honduras earlier), with Venezuela and Nicaragua in the cross-hairs. Thinks do not look at all good.

      • pretzelattack

        yeah, and assange will be more “collateral damage”. fucking elliot abrams is back, that slimy killer. should have been sent to prison at the least, a long time ago.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    The BBC Scotland, Menthorn Media scandal has not run its course. BBC Scotland Digital (propaganda) channel has its own Question Time knock off called Debate Night. The person responsible (Alison Fuller-Pedley, Audience Producer, Menthorn Media) for booking audience members on Question Time is performing the same role for Debate Night. Fuller-Pedley was exposed as supporter of Britain First (see murder of Jo Cox) some time ago.


    The pilot for Debate Night was recorded on 6th February and according to reports on social media Billy Mitchell was in the audience. Expect the pilot to be quietly scrubbed.

    This story has legs. Is Billy getting “expenses”? I feels it in my waters.

  • Isa

    There’s a massive demonstration in Spain tomorrow by Rajoy’s Party ( PP) against Sanchez because of the Catalan issue that Sanchez was trying to moderate . There seems to be a concerted action by Spain’s PP to get rid of Sanchez and this is linked to Venezuela . It serves Sanchez right as he took the measures he took re Venezuela to appease the right wing opposition in the country . What bizarre days we live through .

    • Republicofscotland

      So the Spanish kangaroo trials begin on February 12th. As the EU and the UN, pillars of democracy, prepare to sit back and watch held for over a year in prison and uncharged political prisoners. Their henious crime to organise a democratic vote.

      If this vote had taken place in say Venezuela or Iran, there would be a massive outcry for military intervention, and a call, for the restoration of democracy and the right to vote.

      But it happened in Spain in a region where a unique culture and language exists to allow a democratic independence vote. However the EU and the UN see no gain in aiding the Catalan people, on this occasion freedom and democracy are superceded by international interests.

      • Isa

        I don’t understand why they don’t allow the referendum . It’s beyond me . I understand their fear that the Basque Country would then follow and possibly others , but this is not the way . Allow the referendum and let people decide would be the right decision .

        • defo

          It would Isa, but that would mean Madrid giving up the revenue from prosperous Catalonia.

          Similar story here in Scotland. Referendum = Giving up the theft of our natural resources, their claim to maritime boundaries and almost worse, needing to (and being unable to) find somewhere else to park their phallic replacement WMD’s.
          “Now is not the time”, and as far as the London Establishment is concerned, it never will be.
          Too great a loss.
          Unlike the 51st at St. Valerie, the last time they were ejected from Europe 🙂

    • able

      John Jacob founded the town. Turned the desert into arable farmland, brought irrigation where there was no water, built a vast road network and a city from scratch and drove away the hostile brigands that plagued the area. A man of biblical achievements.

    • BrianFujisan

      February 9, 2019 at 20:06
      Fake Fucking News..as Usual from you…Prove We are the only one’s Talking about it..Cos I know we are NOT.. And Don’t think I missed your Racist Bullshit against Scots.

  • able

    According to David Lammy in an emotional speech to Parliament, the BBC is not diverse enough (yes he actually believes that). Therefore the BBC has pledged that one in six of all its on-screen employees must be gay, lesbian, transgender or disabled by 2020 (I must admit I thought the number of gay staff alone was higher than that already). The BBC, of course, relishes this sort of criticism as it would rather have an entirely “diverse” (non-white, non-straight) workforce anyway.

    • Andrew Ingram

      Diversity is to be welcomed. If the ratio of one in six is the the one we’ve got to work with so be it. One in two might be more fitting when it comes to male female representation in Parliament. How many poor people get to set the minimum wage?

    • MaryPau!

      The problem surely is that while some areas in the uk loke inner cities, have very large numbers of minority groups, other more rural areas have very few. David Lammy is MP for an inner london borough with many immigrant groups and social problems. If you lived there you might well think the locals were under represented on television. If on the other hand like me , you spent some time at the Bury St Edmonds christmas fair last year, ( attendance over 120,000), where you could count the number of ethnic minorities on the fingers of one hand, you might wonder at the apparent obsession of figures like David Lammy with the under representation of minorities?

      Attempts to shoe horn quotas into tv shows can lead to some strange outcomes. I used to be a fan of the TV show Vera ( not on the BBC) which is set in Northumberland. The county has the lowest ethnic population of any English county. Yet to watch recent episodes of Vera, around 50% of the locals at all levels of society are from ethnic minorities. This gives a completely false picture of the inhabitants of Northumberland in the name of political correctness. Do we really need to pretend Northumberland is widely multi racial when it isn’t? The attempt to impose quotas misrepresents life in parts of Britain.

        • Clark

          There’s film of a Command/Service module and a Lunar Module operating in low Earth orbit. You can see it’s a LEM, you can see it’s Earth below, and you can see it was film not video. Yeah, the LEMs looked pretty odd and nothing like what Hollywood would have dreamed up, but as a LEM can be seen operating in orbit it must have actually been a spacecraft.

          It’s really quite easy to see spacecraft in low Earth orbit, so I expect people watched it at the very time that it was televised – I watch the ISS sometimes and I used to watch the Shuttle. Amateur astronomers and assorted geeks certainly would have watched, and you can be sure they’d have kicked up a stink if what they saw hadn’t matched the coverage, especially non-US observers. Some radio hams love listening to transmissions from spacecraft too.

          Expecting your comment to be deleted is just excess suspicion; Craig really does control this site, and there’s no shadowy oversight. Your comment doesn’t break moderation rules – though it would on comments under a new post, or in the middle of well focussed discussion.

          [ Mod: ‘NASAlies’ also posted on this thread as ‘SpicyFingers’ (now deleted, for sockpuppetry). In recent months he has used multiple aliases, one of which was ‘Moocho’.

          Craig recently advised that comments from all sockpuppet aliases should be deleted, including comments under the original name – so the comment above is indeed eligible for deletion. ]

          • Clark

            Mods: – Please nag at Craig to have the moderation rules posted as a page in their own right with a prominent link, including this important alteration. Commenters can’t be expected to know the rules when they’re “posted prominently” in a filing cabinet in the basement.

          • Clark

            Addendum: – There should also be exceptions for changes of screen name that are announced by the commenter, and non-deceptive changes of e-mail address in case someone dislikes their Identicon for instance.

          • Clark

            I sympathise re. Akismet and hope it clears soon.

            Well done for not deleting NASAlies comment above under the extension of the sock puppetry rule, as it would have reinforced his/her suspicion.

          • Tom

            But the module probably never left low earth orbit, did it? Had man set foot on the moon we would have been back within 50 years, given the huge advances in technology since, surely.

          • Clark

            Tom, no one’s been back simply because there’s no money to be made from it. What you have to remember about the Space Race is that it was just the PR front for missile development.

            Getting through the atmosphere is the hardest part – there’s nothing in the way for the rest of the journey. Yeah, they almost certainly went, because the USSR and China would have howled blue murder if they’d faked it. Plus there’s now a satellite orbiting the Moon that has sent back pictures of the landing sites; you can see the tracks left by the Lunar Rovers. Plus they set up reflectors, and universities have been bouncing laser beams off them ever since.

  • freddy

    Laguerre, are you in contact with what is actually happening? That’s sounds like you’re either being beaten up by the YVs or beating them up. What insider knowledge do you claim? Souris.

    • freddy

      I seem to have lost the thread – February 9, 2019 at 14:27
      Brian c

      You evidently don’t know the current situation. The gilets jaunes have slid from mainly apolitical to mainly Ukip-like, but with more violence, and people from outside dependent on media claiming to know better than people in actual contact has the value of a mouse’s fart, frankly.

    • Laguerre

      Freddy, I live in the Paris suburbs, but my friend lives in the centre, where I go most weekends. Today I’ve got la grippe, so didn’t go. Yes I’ve seen quite a bit.

      Today’s demonstration showed that they’re not all far right thugs. There was a limited number of violents who attacked the Assemblée Nationale, but the rest passed quite peacefully in the boulevard St Germain.

      BFM TV which I was watching called the violent lot ‘black bloc’ of the extreme left, without evidence. BFM TV is popular right-wing, much like the Express in the UK – You find their papers in your seat if you take a British Midland flight.

      I have no doubt in classifying the violent lot as far right. There’s not the slightest sign they are left-wing. The rest, the peaceable lot, we have yet to see. It needs some analysis of the videos: are there many women, for example?

      • Clark

        Laguerre, I suspect this is similar to what we have seen elsewhere, eg. UK, US. “Centre” is the term the mainstream media have adopted to mean neoliberal, and it is being rejected widely, but in rejecting it some have moved Right while others have moved Left. So in the UK we have seen increased support for both UKIP and Corbyn. In the US we see increased support for both Sanders and Trump.

        Probably the protesters are a mix, but they’re all ordinary people with little connection to politics or the mainstream media; they also have no leader or organisational structure, so the mainstream media are partly guessing, partly blaming their favourite scapegoat, partly parroting what their favourite politicians have said. There are probably agents provocateurs among the protesters too, who could be working for a whole range of governments or corporations.

      • SA

        Have you spoken to any GJ? They are from my own limited experience normal people and yes many women. They were, at least the ones I met, non-violent and had no politically aligned views except for being anti-austerity. It has certainly started as a provincial movement in so much as it was an issue that affected communities outside Paris and big metropolitan areas where dependence on road travel made the hikes in car fuel prices intolerable. I suspect that there may be a tendency for a more politicised approach in Paris, which is understandable and also for being highjacked by the violence. In fact in some communications from the GJ they claim that their is an attempt at infiltration by a group of People in brown attire which are right wing agents provocateurs.
        Of course middle class people in Paris will find the GJ inconvenient and tend to be very quickly swayed by the establishment who is willing to demonise any protest movement. If you are not to side with the aggrieved I suggest you review your stance about the GJ.
        By the way regarding the earlier discussion of four fingers versus a hand, there is footage published by Ruptley on RT which claims to show this episode and the man was not participating in any violence. I admit I have not watched it.

      • N_

        I have no doubt in classifying the violent lot as far right. There’s not the slightest sign they are left-wing.

        Is there any sign they aren’t? What would you expect violent leftwing radicals to do – sing the Internationale?

        Both the left and the far right are out there on the street. That’s no surprise. It was like that in the 6 Feb 1934 “Stavisky” trouble too, which was a lot more violent than current troubles are. Paris is not at that stage…..yet.

  • anon1

    Just to settle this debate for once and for all.

    Photographs show the protesters in Paris are almost entirely white. Therefore they are right wing. 😉

    • SA

      I am glad that you have now been reunited with your old handle which settles that matter. Where are the moderators when we need them to combat sock puppetry?

      [ Mod: Always on hand, SA. The equivalence of the handles ‘anon1’ and ‘able’ was noted in an earlier thread, and the comment above will be preserved as evidence. Thank you. ]

      • Clark

        Able did not actually break the moderation rules:

        Sockpuppetry. It is in practice impossible to outlaw sockpuppetry without a formal registration system, which I do not want. But the adoption of multiple identities within the same thread is not to be allowed, nor the creation of identities of which the purpose is to ridicule, attack or insult another contributor.” [emphasis in original]


        Of course, it is better netiquette if a commenter announces it when he changes his screen name, but the rules do not require it.

        • SA

          Thanks Clark
          I have now read your comment now and I am in total agreement with what you write and with Ben Goldacre. I sometimes get frustrated because conspiracy theorists lump all the profession or all scientists as collaborating in the great deception and become non-discriminating and oversuspicious of professionals to everybody’s detriment. An example is some of our local vaccine skeptics.
          I very well know the tactics of Big Pharma including resuscitating old drugs for new use and then through some technicalities acquiring some copyright and getting 6 times the price of the drug elsewhere. The licensing authorities then collude with the manufacturers to allow this to happen.
          Anyway I know we are on the same side.

          • Clark

            I get frustrated too. People’s suspicion is justified, but when they resort to a Grand Unifying Conspiracy Theory their objections are discredited and wasted. Worse, it causes the scientific and medical communities to dismiss their complaints, when it is the scientific and medical communities who most need to be influenced and are the only bodies in a position to see what needs to be done and whose representatives can pressure governments to do it. Plus of course it turns people against science and undermines their understanding of it.

          • Clark

            Or to quote Goldacre again:

            “Big pharma is evil: I would agree with that premise. But because people don’t understand exactly how big pharma is evil, their anger and indignation get diverted away from valid criticisms – its role in distorting data, for example, or withholding life-saving AIDS drugs from the developing world – and channelled into infantile fantasies. ‘Big pharma is evil,’ goes the line of reasoning, ‘therefore homeopathy works and the MMR vaccine causes autism.’ This is probably not helpful.”

          • Herbie

            “‘Big pharma is evil,’ goes the line of reasoning, ‘therefore homeopathy works and the MMR vaccine causes autism.’ ”

            This is a strawman.

            The argument is that big pharma is evil. There is no “therefore homeopathy works”.

            There is no “therefore the MMR vaccine causes autism”

            There is only what evil does.

          • Clark

            Oh come on Herbie, don’t act naive. There are commenters who think exactly that way, right here on this blog! They defend each other by accusing anyone who challenges their conspiracy theories of being sheeple and “supporters of the official narrative”. If you call their conspiracy theory a conspiracy theory they insist that there is no such thing, it’s just a term weaponised by the CIA to discredit the TRUTH and you must be some sort of agent.

          • Herbie

            We’ve agreed that Big Pharma is evil.

            But, clearly that doesn’t mean that everything not-Big Pharma is good. That’s basic logic.

            No one would claim that. It’s a strawman invented by those who wish to defend corporate rule whilst giving aspects of it a ticking-off for malfeasance.

            For public consumption.

            Point is. malfeasance is not a bug in the system.

            It’s a feature.

          • Clark

            Herbie, you seem to have made a simple error, that people who have got rich have done so by being highly intelligent, and thus they know all the effects that their commercial shenanigans produce.

            Actually, when commercial forces corrupt medical trial data, the ‘elite’ deprive themselves and their offspring of the best knowledge and treatments along with everyone else. In terms of self interest, it’s a dumb thing to do.

            Can I assume you’re a climate science denying conspiracy theorist too? After all, they wouldn’t be driving CO2 emissions unless they knew it wasn’t really doing any harm, would they?

  • Monster

    Jeremy Corbyn special in the Sunday Heil. Tom Bower eviscerates Corbyn. His bowels are open to public inspection. Message; don’t vote for Corbyn, vote for er… somebody else.

    • Ingwe

      Shouldn’t think many Daily Mail readers are prospective Labour voters, so they’re preaching to the converted. Waiting for the Grauniad to give the book pride of place in its reviews.

  • Sharp Ears

    Jeremy Corbyn is under attack – again. My word ‘they’ are getting really worried. This time it’s Bower, in the Heil on Sunday, of course. I won’t give a link to the slime or its heading. Diane Abbott’s name is included.

    Wikipedia – ‘Bower’s parents were Jcwish refugees who fled Prague after the German occupation of Czechoslovakia in March 1939 and arrived in London later that same year. After attending the William Ellis School in Hampstead, Bower studied law at the London School of Economics, before working as a barrister for the National Council of Civil Liberties. In 1970, Bower joined the BBC as a researcher on the programme 24 Hours before becoming a reporter on Panorama. He was a producer on Panorama from 1975 until 1987. He left the BBC in 1995. Bower is married to Veronica Wadley, former editor of the London Evening Standard, and has four children.’

    He produced a biography on Blair – ‘Broken Vows. Tony Blair, The Tragedy of Power.’ Any mention there on the tragedy for the Iraqi people?

    He compared Blair and the dodgy dossier to Nixon and Watergate here. One difference. Nobody was murdered in the Nixon case unlike Dr Kelly in this country.

    The deceit over the dossier will be Blair’s Watergate

    **PS Harriet Harman and Patricia Hewitt (both still in the HoC) worked for the NCCL. Harman’s husband, Jack Dromey, is also in the HoC.

    What a nest.

  • Sharp Ears

    Miss Dick on Desert Island Discs –

    ‘ ”An awful time’
    She described the mistaken killing of Brazilian electrician Jean Charles de Menezes – which happened during an counter-terrorism operation that she commanded – as “an awful time”.
    Mr de Menezes, 27, was shot in the head at London’s Stockwell Tube in 2005 by police who mistook him for a terror suspect.
    “I think about it quite often,” said Ms Dick, who was ultimately absolved of any blame.
    “I wish, wish, wish it hadn’t happened, of course, but if anything it has made me a better leader, a better police officer and it has made me more resilient.”
    Ms Dick picked tracks including In Private by Dusty Springfield and the hymn Lord Of All Hopefulness among the tunes to take to the desert island with her, and her book choice was the complete works of Thomas Hardy.’

    Yes Ms Dick. It was ‘awful’ for Jean Charles, RIP, and so was the cover up inquest.

    Jean Charles de Menezes inquest records open verdict
    • Jury rejects police claim that Brazilian was lawfully killed
    • Relatives accuse coroner of presiding over ‘whitewash’
    12 Dec 2008

    • Charles Bostock

      Actually I heard part of that programme and thought that Cressida Dick came across rather well. But I admit that I’m prejudiced (within reason) in favour of women who succeed in male-dominated areas of activitiy, have nothing against people who were educated at Oxbridge and am no Old Testament prophet type fundamentalist who believe that one mistake damns someone forever.

          • Clark

            I didn’t. Did she express regret for doggedly attempting to blame the victim, over the course of months? Did she even admit to it? Apologies can be insincere, especially from the ambitious. Do please post the most relevant quote.

          • Clark

            “I wish, wish, wish it hadn’t happened”


            “It was utterly evil of me to try and cover it up by blaming the victim”

            But do prove me wrong, Charles.

          • Charles Bostock

            “I didn’t. ”

            Thought not. Perhaps you shoud have done before putting in the boot, Clark.

          • Clark

            You seem to have missed my point. For which of the two “mistakes” do you not damn her? Or is covering up by blaming the victim the sort of solution you’d attempt yourself?

          • Deb O'Nair

            Both her and then commissioner Ian Blair repeatedly lied to the public, on camera, about the incident. It was only when reports from eyewitnesses started making into the press that they backtracked. There was a deliberate effort by both to mislead which resulted in them being caught blatantly lying in public. The consequences; He got made a Lord and she gets his old job. The Met under Dick has become travesty of policing.

  • Colin Alexander

    We could stop Scotland’s exit from the EU if the will was there from Scotland’s politicians.

    The sovereign people of Scotland voted Remain. The SNP’s made no attempt to defend our sovereignty or democracy in court. Their priority was to defend their role as administrators of devolution – and they lost both times in the Gina Miller and Continuity Bill cases. Never any attempt to uphold Scotland’s people’s sovereignty, only Scotland’s devolution.

    Scotland’s people need to assert our sovereignty. We were promised maximum home rule and EU membership. We were promised a devolution settlement that respected devolved and reserved. More importantly, people gave them a democratic mandate. ( As they did for indyref2).

    We didn’t get maximum home rule. The opposite happened: Devolution powers have been robbed by the unelected Lords, as the UK Govt didn’t think Scottish democracy was worthy of Commons’ debate.

    It’s time our politicians held a National Convention and declared Holyrood the supreme parliament for Scotland and implemented maximum home rule and continued EU membership for Scotland. Deliver what the people voted for.

    Whether independent or not, Scotland’s people are sovereign. Whether we voted Yes or No in 2014, we should support a Scottish Parliament that implements maximum home rule and respects the vote to remain in the EU, as this is what the people voted for in 2014 and 2016 respectively. We need a parliament and politicians that respect the sovereignty of the people.

    Maximum home rule as part of the Union and EU membership have already been decided on and these should be delivered first. UK Parliament didn’t deliver, the Scottish Parliament should.

    There is also a democratic mandate for indyref2, so it should also be respected, even though the SNP are clearly reluctant to hold one until Scotland is already out of the EU, so clearly breaching their manifesto mandate which stated indyref if being dragged, not AFTER, having left the EU.

    • Charles Bostock

      Colin Alexander

      Unfortunately, your argument breaks down in the very second line when you write “The sovereign people of Scotland voted Remain.”.

      There is no such thing as the sovereign people of Scotland.

      There is only the sovereign people of the United Kingdom.

      Which voted Leave.

        • Sharp Ears

          Is May running down the clock (for a no deal)? Brokenshire (CFoI member as are Theresa May of course and 80% of the Tory MPs) is delegated to speak.

          ‘Brexit: MPs may not get vote on May’s deal this month
          11 minutes ago

          MPs may not be given a vote on a revised version of Theresa May’s Brexit deal this month, a minister has said.
          James Brokenshire said there might be another series of non-binding votes on possible Brexit alternatives instead.
          The prime minister has to get an agreement with the EU passed by MPs by 29 March to avoid a no-deal Brexit.
          She will ask MPs for more time to get changes to the deal in talks with Brussels – but Labour has accused her of “cynically” running down the clock.’


          • Republicofscotland

            “Is May running down the clock (for a no deal)?”


            I think you could be correct.

        • Charles Bostock


          It’s not a question of context actually, it’s rather a question of whether you’re using the word “sovereign” in a legally correct manner or merely colloquially.

          • Charles Bostock

            With pleasure, RoS. Delighted to help you understand properly.

            My position – using the word “sovereignty” with its proper legal meaning – is as follows:

            There is no such thing as the sovereign people of Scotland.

            There is only the sovereign people of the United Kingdom.

          • Herbie

            “There is no such thing as the sovereign people of Scotland.”

            What about this then?

            “Standing order number 36 was agreed and resolved without contention late last night in the House of Commons. This was a motion proposed for debate by Ian Blackford the SNP MP for Ross, Skye and Lochaber and leader of the SNP group at Westminster.”

            “This House endorses the principles of the Claim of Right for Scotland, agreed by the Scottish Constitutional Convention in 1989 and by the Scottish Parliament in 2012, and therefore acknowledges the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of government best suited to their needs.”


    • Anon1

      I don’t know how many times we’ve been through this on this blog. Scotland voted to remain inside the United Kingdom. The EU referendum was a UK-wide decision.

      • Republicofscotland

        “Scotland voted to remain inside the United Kingdom. ”

        Indeed it did, however, circumstances have changed, and not for the better I might add. Another indy vote is required.

          • Republicofscotland

            “No they haven’t.”

            Dragged out of Europe, after voting to stay in UK on the premise of remaining in the EU for one.

          • Anon1

            There was no “premise”. You voted to stay in the UK and the people of the UK voted to leave the EU. It wasn’t a government decision to leave the EU.

          • Republicofscotland

            By that very fact, it’s clear that a second indy vote is required. Scotland is at the whim of the British governments, the Brexit farce being a prime example.

  • Anon1

    “Married to a Joyless Fanatic” – a 10-page demolition of Corbyn in today’s Mail by Tom Bower is a tour de force. I’ve never seen anything quite like it. It’s a sort of souvenir pull-out edition, page after page obliterating the last vestiges of the man’s reputation by those who know him best.

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