From Karachi to Caracas 914

I am finding Karachi an interesting place from which to view the world. Four US Presidents have visited Pakistan – Eisenhower, Nixon, Clinton and Bush Jr. Each of them visited a military dictator, in the friendliest of terms. No American President has ever visited a civilian government of Pakistan. The Americans have always been far too busy plotting the next coup.

More recent neo-con practice has of course been to eschew open espousal of military dictatorship and to present CIA-organised coups as democratic revolutions. I was of course aware of their hand behind Juan Guaido in Venezuela, but I had not fully taken on board the extent to which Guaido is purely their creature. If you have not seen this superb article on Guaido’s history in Consortium News, please do read it. Guaido has been US-funded since 2005 specifically to undermine the socialist government of Venezuela. Notably the US sponsorship of this far right puppet started at a time when Chavez’ democratic and human rights credentials were impeccable, which rather undermines the current excuse for Guaido’s elevation.

In Caracas we are seeing an attempt at a colour revolution – quite literally. Here, from a US government propaganda website (not Bellingcat, another one), we have a photograph of the overwhelmingly white opposition group in the Venezuelan National Assembly.

And here, we have from the BBC a shot of Maduro’s new pro-Government citizens’ assembly – overwhelmingly of different ethnicity.

I should be plain, that I did not accept Maduro’s ruse to set up the Constituent Assembly. But neither do I accept the CIA’s ruse to overthrow the elected President. These photographs are helpful because they crystallise the fundamental issue – what is at stake is the West’s attempt to reimpose economic apartheid on the people of Venezuela.

Here in Pakistan, I am anxious to avoid the journalists’ disease of claiming expertise on a country after a few days. But it has been very instructive, and I am impressed by the start Imran Khan has made to addressing the complex and intractable problems that have hamstrung this state of 200 million talented people. Every Pakistani government has claimed to be making efforts to tackle corruption, and the colossal misapplication of state funds, and pretty well every government has been lying about that. But Imran Khan does seem to be fighting the hydra, and with an extraordinary level of application – I heard yesterday direct and separately from a Federal Minister and a Provincial Governor examples of how remarkably closely Khan is following their work.

Internationally, the move to open dialogue with the Taliban appears, coupled with Trump’s determination to pull out, to point the way to some hope of a settlement in Kabul which must inevitably include an element of power-sharing. The conundrum of accessing funds from Saudi Arabia and China without becoming a client is very well understood. Those funds help ward off over-dependence on the World Bank and IMF, whose vultures are already hovering around the usual demands for privatisations and vast hikes in utility prices to poor people. At the same time, a relationship with those institutions is unavoidable. It is an unenviable path to tread.

Attempts to reform Pakistan always encounter massively wealthy entrenched interests. If you are trying desperately hard to do good for your country, against opposition that is often viciously self-interested, it can be hard to remember that freedom of speech must also extend to the ill-intentioned and malign. Equally, while the government may feel this is hardly the time for fissiparous forces to be given play, those with secessionist views should be allowed to express them. Where there is terrorism and political violence, it can be easy for the line to be blurred between when force is and is not legitimate, and between violent extremists and peaceful dissenters advocating similar end goals. It is particularly not easy to tackle these questions where intelligence and military have enjoyed and abused excessive long term autonomy. Getting a grip on fundamental human rights is not easy, but it has to be done.

So the government faces massive challenges in making progress in areas where Pakistan has rightly been criticised in the past, but I feel much more confident they will make progress than I did before I came. I should also say that the overwhelming kindness and hospitality I have received from people at all levels has been very touching. It is a fascinating country to visit and in the next few days I shall be seeing a large number of historical sites, following in the footsteps of Alexander Burnes.


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914 thoughts on “From Karachi to Caracas

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  • FranzB

    CM – “I was of course aware of their hand behind Juan Guaido in Venezuela, but I had not fully taken on board the extent to which Guaido is purely their creature.”

    Makes you wonder if Trump is going to ring Farage up and tell him that he’s the prime minister of the UK now. He could claim that as the UK election wasn’t based on an electoral college (which is what got Trump elected) then the last UK elections were invalid. He could I suppose claim that as there appears to be nobody in charge in the UK, it may as well be Farage. Could be worse though, he might ring Britain First up instead or perhaps even Yaxley-Lennon.

    • Loony

      Maybe the vandalism of Marx’s grave is a logical extension of your own vandalism of his works and legacy.

      In the immediate past you have claimed that I am wrong when I broadly defined communism as being encapsulated in the slogan “From each according to his ability to each according to his means”

      Maybe this is wrong, but if so the error is not mine but that of Marx himself. Presumably your passion is informed by knowledge and hence you must know that the slogan was popularized in the mid 1800’s by August Becker and Louis Blanc and seized upon by Marx himself in order to succinctly encapsulate his broad ideas.

      So you appear to be in favor of socialism whilst simultaneously dismissing as “wrong” the words and thoughts of all the main intellectual thinking underpinning the doctrine.

      Is it possible that you simply have no clue what you are talking about and are incapable of expressing ideas in a cogent and logically consistent manner? Or is there some other explanation for a prima facia case of crass inanity.

      • Hmmm

        According to his needs, as I recall it and that makes more sense to me.
        And you seem a great example of Marxism : you dish out your wonderful wisdom to all of us sadly lacking it ( irony is the solution to creasey)

        • Loony

          Well your recollection is incorrect.

          I do not dish out any “wonderful wisdom” I merely know how to write in a logically coherent manner. Like all sane people I allow for the possibility that my views may be incorrect. I guess that sets me apart from a good number of those who would paint me as the “literal” reincarnation of Adolf Hitler. It is hardly my fault that those who purport to support Marxism simultaneously refute the words of Marx.

          The incoherent views of others are of no interest to me whatsoever – but they may be of interest to anyone wondering whether or not to lend their support to such ideas. Obviously they will have no effect on committed ideologues – after all they have the capacity to completely ignore the upward of 100 million deaths caused directly by adherence to the Communist doctrine.

          • Garth Carthy

            “100 million deaths caused directly by adherence to the Communist doctrine.”

            Capitalism has caused even more deaths than Communism according to Mark Curtis so it is pretty silly to criticise Communism without also criticising Capitalism. A plague on both their houses, I say.

          • pretzelattack

            got a link for that 100 million caused directly by adherence to communist doctrine? you’re not going to include russias ww2 casualties, surely? and in any case capitalism with global warming bids fair to far outstrip that. a pox on both sounds fair at this point.

          • N

            No, @Loony.

            @Hmmm’s recollection is correct. Of course it is from each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

            The fact that you insist otherwise even when your “error” has been brought to your attention, and then you tell us how clever you are, and how you don’t care a jot for anyone else (what a horrible person you must be), shows not only what a bunch of trolls the trolls in your army are (who would have guessed?), but further, what a bunch of psychos they are.

            “Truth” and “logic” only come into your propaganda effort as weapons, along with lies and illogic. It’s not the meaning of what they say that matters to combatants in troll armies. It’s the practical use of what they say in the war effort only.

          • N_

            @Hmmm “Can you provide the link to the exact quote?

            Of course he can’t. He’s a troll.

            You are completely right in how you remember this saying. @Loony is wrong. A large part of trolling is about wasting opponents’ time.

  • Sharp Ears

    Dates for the showing of John Furse’s film. Groundswell -the grass roots battle for the NHS and democracy’.
    I am told it is excellent. (£1.95 for a week)

    For more reviews, info on the making of the film, the issues it raises, the NHS campaign, and how to become involved, see director John Furse’s blog:
    For info on cinema and TV director John Furse see his website:
    Facebook page:

  • Loony

    It seems to be quite the season for the holding and promoting of mutually exclusive views. Here we can find committed Marxists who are busy disavowing the actual words of Marx and elsewhere we have the example of Jeremy Corbyn – a man who seems to be simultaneously both for and against the EU.

    It is of course possible that he has changed his mind – although one of his great selling points is that he has held unswerving and unchanged positions on most major issues for the duration of his adult life.

    Still not to worry as it will remain possible to be a rabid supporter of Corbyn whilst disagreeing with all of his words. Perhaps he never said any of these things, perhaps it is all a CIA plot, perhaps he became momentarily possessed by demons. The possibilities are endless.

    • Hmmm

      Perhaps you need to take a chill tablet. Corbyn has to navigate a tricky path. We’re all grown up enough to understand that. He voted leave, of that I’m certain. If you have a problem with duplicitous politicians there’s a whole list you can go through. If you have a problem with voters believing politicians there’s an even longer list!

      • Loony

        Here is a Jeremy Corbyn interview in which he explicitly states that he voted remain the EU referendum.

        Of course he may be telling an outright lie. If so this would go far beyond any normal definition of duplicitous. Alternatively he is telling the truth and you feel a need to disregard the truth for your own ideological reasons. Absent any evidence beyond the actual words of Jeremy Corbyn it is difficult to see any alternative route to the conclusion you reach.

        So what we have for entertainment are people that support Jeremy Corbyn based on their own belief that Corbyn is a liar. Presumably these same people would urge other people to also support Jeremy Corbyn on the basis that he is an outright liar.

        Sure politicians lie. Obama promised to close Guantanamo Bay but did not do so. However his campaign for a second term did not involve saying to the people “Hey look at Guantanamo Bay – my failure to close it proves I am a great liar. Vote for me. My lies are the best lies” None of Obama’s supporters sought to play up his capacity to say untrue things.

        Now suddenly people in the UK think that suggesting Corbyn is an outright liar is a vote winning strategy. Hmmm indeed!

        • michael norton

          It was always my understand that Jeremy Corbyn was for years against the E.U.
          I thought he held this view because he thought a Labour Government would not want to be hide-bound by E.U. rules.
          Labour should be free to Nationalize
          free to give State Aid,
          free to assist other countries which the E.U. have sanctioned
          and so on.

          • michael norton

            Perhaps Jeremy Corbyn has been listening to his members of parliament, who seem to be very pro remain, perhaps they have persueded Jeremy to change his mind-set?
            However I would not expect Jeremy has actually changed his mind-set but rather for political considerations ( being pragmatic) he is letting it be thought he has changed his mind-set?

        • SA

          I am not sure what your aim is. Is it to prove that Jeremy Corbyn must have a fixed rigid unchanging view of the EU despite changing context and circumstances or otherwise he will be accused of either being a liar or of being inconsistent.
          You always take an issue and reduce it to a binary choice.
          Let me tell you what I think JC stance is according to my observations.
          He has voted remain and said so. During the campaign he clearly stated that he was two thirds for remain and one third for leave because of certain practices in the EU. He on balance stated that he would, if elected, work within the EU to reverse some of these practices. After the referendum, being a democrat, he said he respects the wish of the people and sought to explore some of the advantages of Brexit for implementing some of the nationalisation policies.
          He has also always emphasised his democratic approach in that the Labour Party policy is that which is chosen through a democratic process.

        • Hmmm

          Again, what is your point? Stop flailing around the edges. Politicians lie ALL THE TIME. I can live with his lies because his truths are far better than the neoliberal con they’ve been ramming down our throats. Now. Some grown up comments please.

        • Loony

          I believe he saying is “an apple a day will keep the Dr. away.” It is not “a smear a day will keep the truth away”

          It was not me that suggested Jeremy Corbyn is a liar.. It is interesting to note that according to you NOT calling Jeremy Corbyn a liar is a form of poison. With friends like you who needs enemies?

          • Ian

            Your obsession with Corbyn, and whatever the Mail or Sun are frothing about, is really not that interesting, other than what it tells us about you.

          • Loony

            Unlike you I have no obsession with Corbyn.

            I am interested in why he tells Irish people and Venezuelan people one thing about the EU and tells British people the opposite.

            Just for your own reference I think you will find that the program Contacto Con Maduro (where you can find Corbyn talking about the evils of the EU) has no association whatsoever with the Mail or the Sun.

          • Hmmm

            If you’re genuinely interested then you ought to read blogs by people like Craig Murray. He’ll point out the hypocrisy in politics.
            You’re genuinely flustered here because you know that any politicians you’ve ever voted for have lied. You want all Corbyn voters to be cultists, to fit your narrative. The truth is, as you’ve seen in this discussion, we’re all different. We’re all realists.
            If you cannot understand something please feel free to ask me.

          • Hmmm

            You didn’t suggest Corbyn was a liar? So questioning how he holds one view but airs a different one is what exactly?

        • Hmmm

          If he’s a fan of Trump then he has to explain why he’s fussing over a few minor porkies from Corbyn.
          Whenever Trump opens his gob a lie comes out ffs. If I had a penny for every lie from Trump I’d be able to build his wall for him!

    • sc

      To quote Ben Goldacre, ‘I think you’ll find it’s more complicated than that.’

      Marxism is not a religion with a holy unquestionable scripture, Marx wrote about economics and can be partially agreed with. ‘The actual words of Marx’ don’t matter in themselves.

      Situations change and people can change their minds, with new information. You could very reasonably feel that there are serious problems with the structure and behaviour of the EU, but still decide that leaving is not the best option.

      Finding something someone said and complaining if they say something different at another time or in another context is common internet behaviour, but is basically silly. You could say ‘have you changed your mind over this?’ If so, why? Not OMG caught you out lying!

      I’d disagree on Loony’s ‘selling point’ as well. I think Corbyn comes across as someone with sincerely held views and this is refreshing after years of what seems like a ‘marketing’ approach to politics, full of soundbites, manipulation and focus groups.

  • Republicofscotland

    Wow! Russophobia surely must have reached saturation point in the US, as the well known US government mouthpiece the New York Times, reports, the latest open-ed says. “Corruption is in Russia’s DNA”

    There doesn’t seem to be much of an outcry over this in the media or around the globe.

    So imagine if the word Russian was replaced with say the word J**ish. Just think about the rage that would produce around the globe. There would be calls for imprisonment, sackings etc, but because its Russian DNA, the NYT thinks its okay to smear a whole nation of people.

    Meanwhile the head of one of the most corruption nations on the planet, Trump said in his State of the Nation speech, “Great nations do not fight endless wars.”

    I nearly fell off my chair laughing at that hypocrite say that.

    • michael norton

      RoS I hope you did not hurt yourself, almost falling off your chair?
      Donald Trump is going to Vietnam to meet Dictator Kim, for their second summit.
      I hope we can agree this is a good thing?

    • Ort

      The New York Times op-ed expresses a popular world-wide sentiment.

      After all, it’s not for nothing that Russia has historically earned the sobriquet “The Perfidious Bear”!

      Oh, wait…

    • Jo1

      He also claimed that the US had cleared ISIS out of Syria, RoS. The lies are astonishing. Along with the UK, the US armed, trained and funded rebel groups affiliated to ISIS and al Qaeda.

  • Garth Carthy

    February 6, 2019 at 08:53.

    “Still not to worry as it will remain possible to be a rabid supporter of Corbyn whilst disagreeing with all of his words. Perhaps he never said any of these things, perhaps it is all a CIA plot, perhaps he became momentarily possessed by demons. The possibilities are endless.”

    Perhaps you are just an attention seeking bore. The possibilities are endless.

    • nevermind

      Well said Garth, and to the point. He is merely trying to persuade readers of this blog that Venezuela is the new antisemitism for JC and his reverence to Hitler shows in almost any useless post he’s proffering here.

      • Loony

        Well you know how to take mendacity and baseless smears to a new low. How amazed I was to read the latest smear that I show reverence for Hitler to be completely lacking in any supporting evidence whatsoever.

        Maybe you missed your calling in life – perhaps you should have been an adviser to Pol Pot – you know recommending who to kill next on an evidence free basis.

        • nevermind

          You just did it again, why mention the unmentionable unless you want to stir resemblance, get a shrink why don’t you.

  • Sharp Ears

    Her Maj succeeded to the ‘throne’ 67 years ago today. Fillip is taking her down to the pub in the new Range Rover for a celebratory G&T. Trust he avoids other vehicles on the way.

    • GFL

      I do hope that nasty old Nazi does drive her Maj to the pub tonight, and he drives in his usual manner, no seat belts etc. You never know might be able to get the champagne out to morrow!

    • Rod

      The rumour was he has it up for sale at twice the normal purchase price (presumably because of the vehicle’s provenance) and it being a one-owner with low mileage. Any other road users will probably be more at risk when he’s on the way back especially if the sun’s low in the sky.

      I seem to remember that his last Range Rover was not the only vehicle he put in a ditch, didn’t he land a Heron of the Queen’s Flight off the end of a runway in Scotland somewhere back in the days they used to let him loose on such modes of transport and then blamed his co-pilot ? What a guy !!

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    There has been remarkably little attention given to Nicola Sturgeon’s interview with the US, Public Broadcasting System at the start of this week.

    Allowing that her comments are being interpreted by Severin Carrell, Nicola appears to have wellied the can labelled IndyRef II down the road and over the horizon.

    “I think it’s in the interest of allowing an informed decision to be taken about independence that we allow some of that clarity (re. Brexit) to emerge.”

    Any future referendum should based on an “informed decision about all the implications and consequences (of Brexit).”

    The likely direction of her imminent announcement is further telegraphed by fulsome praise of Angus Robertson’s launch of the Progress Scotland think tank. The mission statement of Progress Scotland is sound enough but why is a scientific exploration of the mechanisms that sway No voters towards Yes, only being launched now? With all the membership subs., donations and bequeathments available to the SNP, surely there should be a small army of political researchers already on the case? If they ain’t targeted at furthering the cause of independence, then what are they doing? Optimising the functions of a glorified county council at Holyrood? Gradualism to the core!

  • Sharp Ears

    I was born in Lyndhurst in the New Forest and some of my childhood was spent in New Milton which is near the coast. The New Milton Advertiser was the local paper, printed on letterpress on broadsheet paper. It contained hardly any ads except for local ones and it was widely read. The editor has just died in his 99th year. The paper and its sister, the Lymington Times, are still going and are independent as far as I know unlike most others nowadays.

    You have to admire Charles Curry. As the obit written by his son reads:

    ‘“We are sad to announce the death of our much-loved proprietor Charles Starr Curry MBE at the age of 98. He became editor of the New Milton Advertiser and Lymington Times on the death of his father in 1966 and remained at the helm for nearly 50 years. He was made an MBE in 1997.”

    His son Eddie Curry, who took over from him as A&T managing director, said: “My father was a great newspaper man and was always determined to print the truth. He was never happier than when fighting authority and standing up for the ordinary person. He never allowed anyone to tell him what to publish – indeed threats of legal action of any other kind of intimidation virtually guaranteed a story would be published just to show he wasn’t going to be pushed around. He established an enormously popular local paper that reported on issues in the community, which will continue into the future.”

    They don’t make them like that any more especially not in the mainstream. RIP old Charles.

  • N_

    Donald Tusk says there is a place in hell for Brexiters who didn’t plan. That will go down well in the DUP.

    • N_

      Just to clarify: Donald Tusk aimed his remark at promoters of Brexit who had no plan, not at all Leave voters and not at all British people.

      And…I was right about the effect of his remark in the DUP. One, the DUP MP Sammy Wilson, a man who has a record of involvement with Protestant-supremacist paramilitaries, hasn’t restricted his response to what he says in private rooms or wearing a balaclava. He has picked at his phone (what a brave guy) and enlisted the aid of a US advertising company called Twitter to distribute his message in which he calls Donald Tusk satanic. His actual words are that Donald Tusk is a “devilish, trident wielding, euro maniac”. He means Catholic. Why doesn’t he say the word “Anti-Christ” and be done with it?

      Will someone tell these insane Calvinist “God smiles on the rich” bastards where they can shove their rabid bigotry? You wonder whether half of them have ever actually crossed the Irish border.

    • Ort

      Ah, I see that knowing references to Hell are not limited to US politicians!

      During the 2016 primaries, the odious Madeleine Albright pontificated that there was “a special place in Hell” for women who didn’t vote for Empress-in-Waiting Clinton.

      To be fair and balanced, a while back a Trump advisor had to apologize for stating that there was a special place in Hell for Canadian PM Justin Trudeau; I disremember why, exactly, and it’s not worth looking up.

      As I commented at the time, it can’t be mere coincidence that distinguished career politicians seem to know an awful lot about the attributes and operations of Hell, down to its admission criteria.

  • Adrian Parsons

    Having just had yet another account deleted by the Guardian for having the sheer bad taste to raise the topic of their “Manafort visited Assange” and March for Life libels, this video gives an insight into the semi-literate scum that populate the corridors of the MSM:

    And here’s the full list of the “news” organisations/individuals getting sued for their “coverage” of the March for Life.

    The Washington Post
    The New York Times
    Cable News Network, Inc. (CNN)
    The Guardian
    National Public Radio
    Atlantic Media Inc.
    Capitol Hill Publishing Corp.
    Diocese of Covington
    Diocese of Lexington
    Archdiocese of Louisville
    Diocese of Baltimore
    Ana Cabrera
    Sara Sidner
    Erin Burnett
    S.E. Cupp
    Elliot C. McLaughlin
    Amanda Watts
    Emanuella Grinberg
    Michelle Boorstein
    Cleve R. Wootson Jr.
    Antonio Olivo
    Joe Heim
    Michael E. Miller
    Eli Rosenberg
    Isaac Stanley-Becker
    Kristine Phillips
    Sarah Mervosh
    Emily S. Rueb
    Maggie Haberman
    David Brooks
    Shannon Doyne
    Kurt Eichenwald
    Andrea Mitchell
    Savannah Guthrie
    Joy Reid
    Chuck Todd
    Noah Berlatsky
    Elisha Fieldstadt
    Eun Kyung Kim
    Bill Maher
    Warner Media
    Conde Nast
    The Hill
    The Atlantic
    Ilhan Omar
    Elizabeth Warren
    Kathy Griffin
    Alyssa Milano
    Jim Carrey

    Karma’s a real bitch, ain’t it!

    • J

      Jimmy Dore is doing a brilliant job conveying to the mass of us just how poorly served we are by the ‘public’ discourse.

      • bj

        Yes, he’s absolutely brilliant in his zest to reveal the day-to-day disinformation, and very entertaining, in the broad sense of the word, in doing so.

    • pretzelattack

      they absolutely hate bringing up the luke harding story, mentioning it got me an apparently permanent premoderation. they’re useless when it comes to politics or economics, still go there for a few articles on other subjects.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    The DUP’s Brexit spokesman, Sammy Wilson lets rip at Donald Tusk. Tusk is a “devilish euro maniac” he represents a “Trident wielding cabal”. Seems the EU is in thrall to the anti-Christ in the Vatican after all.

    For the record, Tusk is a Kashubian and his odd first name is a family tradition dating back to the meeting between a distant female relation and a Scotsman that particularly impressed her.

    Wilson is a barely sentient thug. In 2016 when a constituent stated that he wanted to leave the EU to “get the ethnics out”, Wilson replied “absolutely right”.

    • N_

      Sorry, I didn’t see your post before I posted as above.
      Sammy Wilson is indeed a thug, and the notion of “Anti-Christ” is indeed what this is all about.
      As for the Scottish ancestor with the horn, any idea whether he was from Glasgow or Edinburgh? 🙂

      • N_

        If he was from Edinburgh, perhaps there’s a record of him telling ladies when he was tired out that “You’ll have had your tusk”.

      • Vivian O'Blivion

        I understand that the female ancestor of Tusk was on her travels. The identity of the Scotsman remains a mystery. Scottish visitors to the Baltic coast around that time had an unsavoury reputation as either tinkers or mercenaries.

    • Deb O'Nair

      “Trident wielding cabal”

      Perfectly describes the Tories running the UK, it was after all May’s first act in parliament when she became PM; putting the UK taxpayer on the hook for £10’s billions for a redundant weapons system that regularly fails under ideal test conditions.

  • Republicofscotland

    Finally the real reason for the Venezuelan coup, the US and its compliant minions don’t give a toss about human rights and democracy in the country.

    “Venezuela’s government-in-waiting will allow foreign private oil companies a greater stake in joint ventures with its state-owned oil giant, Juan Guaido’s envoy to the US has said.”

    “Currently, Venezuela’s socialist government has requirements that Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) keep a controlling stake in any joint ventures with other energy companies. ”

    • Deb O'Nair

      The Tories seem to be hell bent on making the country ungovernable so that the corporations and money men can clean up unopposed.

  • giyane

    Tks tsk why didn’t the EU mods vaporise Tusk’s using his position as a soapbox to millions of listeners, referring to Hell in public.

    The pro-Semites are apoplectic at this metaphor for democratic oblivion, punishment by the electorate. Hang on, pro-Semites should be pro-religion, shouldn’t they?

    Tories don’t like the use of religious metaphor being used in political debate. Why?

    It reminds them that the entire UK is fed up and ready to sling the Tory party and its f*****ng brexit into political oblivion

  • Republicofscotland

    As some have already commented on Tusk’s “Sprcial place in hell” remark.

    “The Irish Taoiseach was caught on a mic saying “they will give you terrible trouble in the British press for that” after the European Council president said said he wonders what the “special place in hell looks like for those who promoted Brexit” without a plan.”

    • N_

      Sammy Wilson’s rabid maniacal Calvinist reply to Donald Tusk is worth reading in full.

      Not only does he call Donald Tusk a rosary fiddling condom shunning Papist a “devilish euro maniac” with a “trident” (nothing like amplifying the image); he also says Tusk is seeking to keep her majesty’s glorious “UK” “bound” by “chains”, and that Tusk has “fanned the flames”…

      …but (Calvin be blessed!) “all he will succeed in doing is stiffening the resolve” of the defenders of Derry those who have chosen “to be clear of Tusk and the Antichrist in Rome his Trident wielding cabal”.

      In short, it’s Calvinist crazies with a big stiff “resolve” standing up to the Antichrist and his Tusk.

      I can laugh, but I hope the real DUP appears even more clearly in its true colours, to the point of totally kooking out in public for everyone to observe.

  • Republicofscotland

    With its reputation now lying in tatters, can AI ever be trusted again, on human rights?

    “Amnesty International has a “toxic” working environment, with widespread bullying, public humiliation, discrimination and other abuses of power, a report has found.”

    “A review into workplace culture, commissioned after two staff members killed themselves last year, found a dangerous “us versus them” dynamic, and a severe lack of trust in senior management, which threatened Amnesty’s credibility as a human rights champion.”

    “It added: “As organisational rifts and evidence of nepotism and hypocrisy become public knowledge they will be used by government and other opponents of Amnesty’s work to undercut or dismiss Amnesty’s advocacy around the world, fundamentally jeopardising the organisation’s mission.” ”

    • Dave

      It was an excellent speech, but I had to laugh at the congratulations to the man on the moon and hero of Pennsylvania and suspect they were linked.

      How can a heavy space ship land and take off in a gravity free environment and Trump knows there is widespread doubt.

      He then introduced the hero “who had been shot 7 times”. The hero was at the back next to a door, handy for a quick exit before any questions asked, and after standing, sat down again as quickly as he could. He was a tall and large man, and didn’t look like he had been shot even once.

      • Dungroanin

        Got a 70% viewer approval apparently!
        He had the legislators yelling the absurd USA chant.
        Some democrat women dressed up and managed to be potrayed as socialist medical staff at a abortion clinic!
        Pelosi genuflected with a stretched arms applause as she played her part in the pantomime, as did Hills in the election. The Graun spins it as ‘ironic’ what a gal!

        70. Percent.

    • Charles Bostock

      That’s George’s problem really – he’s all eloquence but is found wanting in the factual and truth department.

      • John A

        Any chance of you substantiating the nonsense you write Bostick. No, thought not. Just keep cashing the cheques from Integrity Initiative and carry on.

        • Ken Kenn

          No cheques will be forthcoming to anyone for a while.

          Integrity Initiative’s website has been taken offline.

          Could be the fault of Anonymous but no-one knows who they are obviously.

          If II had have been doing their job they would have known who they are by now.

          On the other hand II know who the Russians are but it’s not them.

  • Sharp Ears

    The big carriage guns are out in force today – Tusk, Varadkar, Juncker, – with 51 days to go until Brexit. They don’t like it up ’em.

      • Wikikettle

        Peter Hitchens has made a historical documentary about about UK and the EU. “This Sceptic Isle”. Its on youtube. He also has a lecturer “The EU is the Continuation of Germany By Other Means”. His historic view of Ukraine and Russia is also very informative.

      • freddy

        Somehow I am reminded of Monty Python’s Philosopher’s Song.

        “Donald Tusk had a boozy musk
        and was rarely very stable
        Herr Juncker was a bit a of a dunker
        But it’s probably just a fable.
        Ol’ Leo you’d love to know
        Used kar under the table”

        You could easily do the reverse of course – and probably far funnier.

    • Sharp Ears

      Don’t assume I go along with Tusk or the others. Considering he is the President of the European Council and a negotiator, his choice of words was completely out of order and totally inappropriate.

      I wish Cameron had not arranged the referendum especially as he slid off immediately afterwards. I am getting old and will not be around when the younger generations here are having to cope with the fallout from the vote and deal with the consequences.

  • Jack

    Tusk’s comment should be condemned by any sane democrat.
    How anyone want to be ruled by this dictator = himself, not elected – is not comprehensible.

  • Isa

    Together we can at least fight desinformation about Venezuela :

    Vídeo being passed and retweeted as January 2019 was actually posted online in 2016 ( no guarantees as if it was really from 2016 or of a real protest )

    False pictures from other countries being propagated online as being in Venezuela :

    Twitter automated bots in support of guaido linked to Miami account :

    share these and if you see people using these , call them out on it . The more people that know that manipulation is happening the better chances of preventing this absolute perversion that USA , EU and Canada are doing to Venezuela and its people .

    • Ken Kenn

      The giveaway was that the Guardian has been receiving VHS tapes of the protests.

      Out now on VHS box sets.

  • Ingwe

    So BBC’s John Humphries is finally going ‘sometime’ in 2019. The BBC, in a truly awful self-referential puff, that took over 10 minutes of the World at One today, had the equally awful Sarah Montague drooling over her former colleague’s decision to quit.
    He is apparently continuing his column with the Daily Heil, with their intellectually enfeebled scribblers, not yet trusted with anything other than crayons. Oh lack a day.
    What an opportunity to bring into Radio 4’s ‘Toady’ another ‘Nick Robinson’ government communique-reading “journalist”.
    When extolling his supposed brilliant credentials as a “journalist” Sarah Montague, who herself struggles with anything more complex than the sports news, said he “asked the questions of those in power, that the listeners at home wanted asking”. Yeah right, not in my 32 years of hearing him interrupting speakers with silly trivial points and never questioning any of the assumptions that needed questioning.
    Being chairman of Mastermind is the limit of his ability.

  • freddy

    Watching parts of the SOTU, even all the women in white seemed to be applauding. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (bit of a mouthful) was an exception.

    • Garth Carthy

      I think the women were probably, quite rightly, applauding themselves – not Trump, Freddy.

      • freddy

        I agree we all have the right to applaud ourselves. I do it all the time. Everyone loves it.

        But seriously that was my (your) impression too. But I think the mood changed? If you watch NP behind him, thought it was curious given Trump’s comments.

        And I hate to go all Sargon here (don’t get triggered anyone), but I saw some sense in Benjamin’s take –

        Did you see the whole thing? I’m cool if your interpretation was different.

        • Garth Carthy

          “Did you see the whole thing? I’m cool if your interpretation was different.”
          No, Freddy. I only saw some of it on Channel 4 News.
          Let’s face it, it’s difficult to interpret anything in Trump’s world but at least he’s entertaining. I think he’s just a showman – a performer with a gigantic ego.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Candidate for the Democratic, Presidential primaries, Tulsi Gabbard repeatedly gets hell on NBC for refusing to declare President Assad as an enemy of the United States.

    Unfortunately, she’ll be burned when the big, corporate friendly candidates apply their Billion $ warchests. I liked Richard Ojeda as a candidate but he has withdrawn already in the face of no platforming from the MSM.

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