Sorry For the Silence 445

I am working on two big pieces: one on the Skripals and one on the Chagos Islands judgement. The Skripal piece in particular is occasioning a great deal of thought, so apologies for the delay. Nadira is away working so I am single parenting, which means very little Lagavulin, without which my brain synapses don’t connect properly. I hope however to get enough sparks flying and get the Skripal piece up today.

Sorry For the Silence

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445 thoughts on “Sorry For the Silence

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  • N_

    What is it proposed that the army might do against urban citizens of a gangster knife crime persuasion knife crime?

    Two jobs that come to mind are enforcing curfews and manning checkpoints at places such as entertainment venues and entrances to shopping malls. Supporting the police in anti-gang raids seems unlikely. The gangs aren’t at war against the police.

    Cressida Dick’s reference to middle class cocaine users having blood on their hands would be amusing if we didn’t realise that it’s meant to distract from forceful measures that may soon be taken in poor areas. The result of those measures will not be to weaken gang structures but to strengthen them. The measures may also prove useful during food and fuel shortages, which even without a military involvement would similarly strengthen gangs. And they may yet involve the British army getting stuck into a race (and class) war that so many of its soldiers are itching to fight.

    • N_

      Defence secretary Gavin Williamson says the army is ready to go in to British cities to, er, battle the knife crime crisis.

      White hoods at the ready?

      Got to recall how effective the Bloody Sunday operation was, how it changed things exactly the way the British elite wanted.

      Who will the “knife crime tsar” be, I wonder? Could they allow themselves the bellylaugh they’d have if they appointed Boris Johnson? I don’t think it will be him, but I can’t get the idea out of my head.

      • Iain Stewart

        Unfortunately, judging by the recent attack in Condé-sur-Sarthe prison, there is a problem with detecting ceramic knives.

    • craig Post author

      No, it’s ripening. I don’t belong to the “I just visited somewhere so now I am an expert” school of journalism.

      • Antonym

        Ok, the Archives/ Categories on this site show 0 articles on Pakistan till now, and 0 too on Israel.
        They do show 57 articles on Afghanistan and 62 on Palestine, so do readers have to presume now that you spend a lot of time in (and studying) those last two countries?

          • Deb O'Nair

            An essay is a short piece of writing on a particular subject, often providing an argument to a particular opinion. ‘Essays’ is the plural of essay. What’s your problem (apart from not understanding basic words of the English language and repeatedly misusing punctuation)?

        • Antonym

          My penny finally dropped when I read that the blog author here has his in-law family living in Uzbekistan: limits your freedom of expression considerably.
          I do know that Kazakhstan is considerable more secular thanks to Soviet education etc.; their religion now is the common $$$$.
          The Islamic State has operated 57 camps (30 in Iraq, 27 in Syria). The Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, has operated 23 camps inside Syria. Allied jihadist groups have run 37 other camps (35 in Syria and two in Iraq); 11 of those camps are run by jihadist groups from the Caucasus, four by Uzbek jihadist groups, two by ethnic Uighurs, and jihadists from Gaza, Morocco, and Kazakhstan each run one camp.

  • Sharp Ears

    Good for Corbyn. I heard that on the BBC ( so it must be true 😉 ). He is fighting back against La Hodge. She spent all day yesterday being interviewed and filmed. There should be warnings when she is coming up. Hope she’s having a lie down today.

    He has a link to this on his Twitter, comparing it to the appalling Tory funding of state education.

    Charterhouse, one of the schools where school fees are being funded via tax havens, is the alma mater of Jeremy Hunt and the Dimblebores.

    Elite UK school fees paid via tax haven firms, leak reveals
    Charterhouse one of 50 private education providers to have received funds via Baltic bank
    Tue 5 Mar 2019

    • Ian

      that’s funny. The same story, about the troika laundromat, which you were so keen to disparage and sneer at yesterday as ‘anti Russian’ propaganda. Now, it’s useful to your purposes because St Jeremy has approved of it. lol, make up your mind.

    • N_

      It’s interesting, the connection between top private schools and Troika money.

      Those schools have been receiving Russian and Chinese money for a long time. The organisation called “Gabbitas Thring” is key in how places are arranged at such schools for the offspring of MI6’s most influential “friends” around the world. Those shitty and perverted institutions have long been an important part of the British brand for the more elite sections of MI6’s recruitment market. A top official in Berlin or Caracas doesn’t sign up with MI6 because he wants his grandchildren to attend British comprehensive schools and then to study at a rebranded polytechnic while developing a lifelong taste for munching chips and Morris dancing.

      It is really hard to exaggerate the importance of such schools to the British elite. Everything about them says exclusivism. That is what they are about. Everything they say to the contrary is a lie.

      So anyway … we have the Troika link with the British royal family including Prince Charles.

      And we have the Troika link with top private schools.

      And we also have the involvement of Prince Charles with private schools through “GEMS”. GEMS is a global “education” racket featuring billionaire Sunny Varkey and in which James Sabben-Clare, the former headmaster of elite school Winchester College, was also involved.

      As for the word “troika”, OK it’s the standard Russian word for a “trio” but in the context of banking it makes me think of Triodos Bank (a Steinerite outfit which has tentacles in many things “alternative”, “green” and “lefty”), and of social “threefolding” and other Steinerite concerns. Any time you hear “people, profit, planet” – the mystified propagandistic idea that the population deserve respect so long as they don’t rise up, the operators in the “business world” need respect because they are such darlings who help everyone so much, and the planet needs respect because it’s what we live on – the Steinerites are involved.

      Watch out for bullsh*t about “epochs” too.

      You can bet the Steinerites will also be well involved in the “natural history” push in British schools that is currently being fronted by a green politician. It sounds great, doesn’t it, encouraging children to respect and commune with nature, to plant vegetables, to enjoy parks and the countryside, to have wooden toys, and so on? Indeed it is great. Doing something about capitalism wrecking the planet is great too. But you have to look at who is putting these ideas out and why, and what they are trying to slip down your gullet inside the tasty coating. And the picture is not at all pretty. It is ex卐eedingly unpretty.

    • Jo1

      Peston just on. Have switched off. He’s interviewing David Miliband on “whether the Party he loves can be saved”.

      • Herbie

        The framing of the fake narrative.

        I mean, if Dave’s mates stopped fuckin about, then the party would be saved, win the election and govern for a generation.

        There’s your answer, Pestie.

        • Jo1

          It was the, “party he loves” bit that got me. Miliband loved the Party so much he threw a wobbler when his brother beat him in the leadership contest and then packed in being an MP. (Which isn’t to say he won’t have been right in the loop as the assault on Corbyn’s position has accelerated.)

          • Dungroanin

            And became the puppet he always was Condee as leader of International Rescue! For a zillion bucks payoff for his share of the loot from war and terror.

            Peston is the smiley faced Psycho version of themedia whores, just like Mair. Their jocular urbanity developed at the beeb deployed in the commercial broadcasting arena – same old shit, different platform.

            Sad lonely people end up soaking it up and voting accordingly.

            The parachuted candidates (mp’s) failed to transmute into yo-yo’s last night with their broadcast from Hell – so send for International Rescue dummy.

          • Jo1

            As I said, Daviband has never been out of the loop since he went. He’s entered the dialogue now. I think he is the person Watson and his mob want back to lead the Labour Party if they bring Corbyn down.

  • Dennis Revell


    Wink, wink.

    With reference to possible deleterious impact on your fund raising, might not have been such a great idea dropping Lagavulin as your favourite go-to imbibe. 😉 Next time lie and make it Johnny Walker, or Glenfiddich if you must.

    Wink, wink.


  • Hamish McGlumpha

    “Cressida Dick’s reference to middle class cocaine users having blood on their hands” says the woman who oversaw the Mets execution of poor Jean Charles de Menezes

    • N_

      What most cops really think is that most knife crime is scum on scum crime.

      The cops make an effort to reduce white-collar crime? You gotta be joking!

      It’s all right “Dick,Head of the London Police”, saying what she said, but let’s not expect her to bust any top journalists or politicians when they’re taking delivery of their cocaine or using it.

      Bust a few household names in a week, and with good video coverage – perhaps a cabinet minister, a former mayor of London, a top civil servant, and two or three very well-known BBC news journalists – and things could change a lot. They couldn’t all run to rehab with stories about “my cocaine hell”.

      Ain’t going to happen. Dick knows who she works for. Mustn’t upset the pyramid. The whole point of what she said about middle class people (and most middle class people aren’t drugheads – it’s only in some sectors) was to put some spin on the war that looks as though it may soon be declared in Third World areas in some British cities.

      I’ve noticed too that the mothers of “people who live in knife crime areas” keep getting mentioned. That plays to the Tory idea that working class people are not only dirty but also shag like rabbits, and that you’ve only got to look at a streetful of proles and sooner or later new ones start popping out of the bodies of existing ones. It’s really about time that leftwing people got some understanding of the Tory mentality.

      There’s also the idea that people who carry knives for defensive reasons should be encouraged not to.

      There’s no mention of what it’s really like, living in a gang-controlled area and being scared every time you go in and out that you might get stabbed. In some circumstances basically you’ve got to carry a weapon.

      No mention either of the role of videogames in ramping up the inhuman insanity of the psychokiller vibe and of relating to other people as though they were objects. If you’ve wasted 500 imaginary people in videogames, it doesn’t seem much of a step to stab someone on the street.

      • Charles Bostock

        ” It’s really about time that left-wing people got some understanding of the Tory mentality.”

        The sort of understanding which is only vouchsafed to the few of superior knowledge and insight of whom you obviously believe you are part?

        I think that most people – whether they are Conservatives, Labour, LibDem, abstainers, the non-political – would, if they came into contact with your superior “understanding” of matters would waste no time tossing it into their mental waste paper basket.

        BTW you’re fond of the word “scum” aren’t you – you use it quite often to describe others (often accompanied by another four letter word or two).

        • N_

          Yes, I do use emotive words. I also put up substantive comment and information. Your comment on my post here is largely a scoff, akin to sticking your tongue out. I suspect you know damned well that I’m right in what I say about the hate-filled Tory mentality, and that that’s what got your back up. Most people don’t know it very well. It’s shocking. It shocks even me sometimes.

          • Herbie

            They’re embarrassed because they know deep down that they were simply born to their success in life.

            The poor remind them that everything they desire to think about themselves, their whole being, is a complete fraud.

  • michael norton

    Mrs. Theresa May now realizes she made a huge mistake bring back Amber Rudd.
    Rudd is now on sanctions.

    Mrs. May has started a “black ops campaign” against Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd as the Remainer is now no longer allowed to give live broadcast interviews

    • michael norton

      As Amber Rudd is now on “suicide watch”
      and that this has been made public, this is a threat to other ministers, My Deal or No Deal or you are out.

  • Dungroanin

    Hi ho hi ho its off to vote we go? Or is it the beginning of the coup… i mean a emergency coalition.

    The stabbings, the bombs, Stephen Yaxley Lennon … omens!

    The AS allegations against the most innocuous and unprejudiced opposition leadership by the dark art phantoms of Blairism and the raising from the dead of the putrid SDP1 by these ghouls and has beens!

    The turd bombers here who never sleep.

    The omens…

    • Vivian O'Blivion

      Odds being offered on date of the next General Election. 2019 @ 7/4, 2020 @ 5/1, 2022 (Fixed term Parliament act) @ 2/1. My gut tells me that’s about right. Prepare for an Autumn GE. Theresa’s Withdrawal Agreement will limp over the finishing line and she will “retire” with all the dignity she can muster (expressed in picograms). Tory leadership contest over the Summer with the winner graciously granting the plebs the opportunity to “endorse” their appointment in the Autumn.

      • giyane

        Viv o bliv

        She’s got as.much chance of getting her withdrawal bill through parliament as a.mummified pharaohnic cat getting to hell.

        Just because somebody does something to you doesn’t mean you are responsible for it. The EU understands our predicament with the Tories and will only deal with a different government after the Tories go.

        The stupid Tories have played the populist racist card that Trump has played. A card which is as completely unacceptable here as anywhere else.
        A card that will destroy them as surely as proxy terror has destroyed their dreams of empire2..

      • N_

        The likelihood of an EU election being held in Britain in May is very low (neither main party would want one) but as far as I know there isn’t a market for that. An EU election would function like a “one and a half”-th referendumm, and that is not a serious option. But if Britain is still a member the elections would have to be held. Conclusion: the country is likely to leave the EU on 29 March, whether it’s with a deal, with no deal, or with a semi-deal. Arguments over Britain’s relations with the EU will then continue within another framework than the run-up to exit.

        The Brexit Statutory Instruments Dashboard, althought unfortunately it’s only updated every several days, is a good source on progress with the tabling and processing of Brexit-related legislation.

        • giyane


          Imho in reality it doesn’t matter what the political analysts say No Deal and May ‘s deal are dead ducks. May is running down the clock to certain electoral defeat.

          The savages that want May ‘s racist brexit with no political discussion or negotiation will work out that if there’s enough money subsidise trade tariffs for the racist cause, there must be enough money to ban all immigrants.

          If they want civil war, that would delight the immigrants. Home grown jihad. Whoopee!

          • N_

            A semi-deal could create a combination of a crashout with some agreed elements of transition.

      • Dungroanin

        1. A no-deal is not off the table.
        That is the default at the end of A50 if there is no WA. The EU legally will be obliged to have a chaotic exit against their desires, because WE failed to approve Mays dogs dinner based only on HER redlines.

        That was always the brexiteers plan A, with their Henry VIII extra powers to steamroll all legislation.

        2. A GE is not subject to the bs agreement that Cameron and Clegg imposed on themselves, to enable the austerity project to be implemented and Student fees and Royal Mail, without rebellion by the LibDem bleeding hearts.

        The last election is not due until next year!

        3. The pattern of donations to the tories is the same as when they are going into an election year.

        4. Parliament is dysfunctional with no effective government majority. Traditionally we have always been asked to rethriw the dice in such parliaments.

        The unwritten constitution is being broken by not having a GE – people notice and will vote accordingly out of instinctive historical Britishness.

        • N_

          Yes – the Henry VIII powers make a nonsense of the “there’s insufficient time to legislate” argument – as also do other considerations.

          What’s an “unwritten constitution”?

          • Dungroanin

            It’s what we are told to believe we have – it involves nonsensical harrumphing non sequiters like Magna Carta; Englishman’s home is his castle; right to trial by peers; Habeas Corpus…etc.

            To be clear we do not have a constitution.

            We do not have a democracy.

            We have a constitutional monarchy – pretending to be both of these but is neither.

  • DiggerUK

    I’m not sorry ladies and gentlemen if this David Icke article has been previously posted, in fact I am not in the least bit embarrassed to link to The UK King of Conpiracy Theories. But I have to admit it is one of the most readable articles explaining how three children, and god knows how many ducks, survived contact with one of the deadliest military grade poisons developed in the last few decades…_

    • Michael McNulty

      David Icke often talks sense. He said drugs companies claim some drugs have side-effects when they are not side-effects, they are effects.

      Someone once said he thought David comes out with some outlandish stuff so the elite can more easily discredit him as some kind of kook, saying if he only stuck to the truth they’d probably have bumped him off.

    • wonky

      Hats off to Mr Icke. Shame on the Australian government and those who lobbied for his ban.

      • Blunderbuss

        Last time I met David Icke he made an interesting comment: “If you think I’m mad, look at the things that supposedly sane people do”.

  • Republicofscotland

    If implemented this will cost jobs.

    “The Department for International Trade (DIT) intends to cut 80-90% of all tariffs imposed on goods imported into Britain, according to Whitehall sources.”

    “The cuts, which will be outlined in documents published if the prime minister fails to get parliamentary backing for her EU withdrawal bill next week, represent a bombshell for many manufacturers and farmers in the UK.”

    “Since tariffs are a charge on thousands of types of goods entering the country, they protect domestic producers from overseas competitors.”

    • Martinned

      For the last few weeks and months, this has been the subject of a turf war between Treasury on the one side and DIT, BEIS, and DEFRA on the other side. Treasury wants no import tariffs, because otherwise you get inflation, and the other departments want some import tariffs, because (as you say) a unilateral disarmament would cost jobs. As far as I can tell, they’re ending up somewhere in the middle, but I haven’t paid very close attention to the issue.

    • Martinned

      Meanwhile, according to MLex:

      UK importers in limbo as ministers split over publishing no-deal tariffs

      UK importers face continuing uncertainty as ministers are split over when the government should release proposed tariff schedules to take effect in the event of a no-deal Brexit. International Trade Secretary Liam Fox today said businesses ought to see the schedules, which set out the tariffs applied to imports, sooner rather than later. But Business Secretary Greg Clark said they should only be released if a no-deal Brexit appears inevitable.

      • giyane

        Why would Tories publish their stupid plans before being kicked out of office ?

        There is a special place in he’ll for the completely clueless who pretend to be managing our affairs. May cannot survive the second vote against her withdrawal bill.

      • Blunderbuss

        Why has nobody noticed that the lack of tariffs on imports from the EU also costs jobs?

    • Charles Bostock


      You probably don’t know this, but tariff cuts have been on the international agenda ever since WW2 and the founding of the GATT (the clue’s in the name…). That’s why there have been been many “rounds” of tariff cuts under the auspices of the GATT and then the WTO. Dillon, Round, Uruguay Round, Doha……check them out.

      Secondly, free trade was the UK dogma for almost one and a half centuries until the Great Depression if the 1930s (when all countries including the UK went in for beggar-thy-neighbour tariff policies). To be noted that for those almost one and a half centuries the UK did not apply tariffs eveb when its trading partners were….

      To return to the immediate future, you’ll of course be aware that there are Brexiteer economists (most notably perhaps Professor Patrick Minford – I’m sure your magpie mind has come across him?) who positively insist that the UK should unilaterally allow the tariff-free entry of goods ( raw materials, semi-manufactures and manufactures) irrespectice of whether its trading partners do or don’t. The good professor opines that apart from all the well-known benefits of no tariffs (you will be cognisant of the arguments here, so I shan’t insult you by repeating them), tariff -free entry into the UK would lead to a drop in prices.

      • giyane

        Milford is an original Thatcher slaverer.
        The man has rabies . One flick of Minford alt right dogma saliva would keep the M6 motorway verges weed-fee for 30 years.

        • Charles Bostock

          Thank you for that interesting and substanbtial contribution to the debate.

    • FranzB

      I assume this threat leaked to Sky is to up the pressure on MPs to vote for May’s deal, i.e. vote for my deal or what’s left of industry and some farming gets it. If followed through then it could lead to job losses. But note that Greg Clark on BBC radio 4 said:-

      “”We have been consulting with different industry sectors on this. It has big implications for different sectors. Ceramics is an industry that I know very well. It has been subject to very unfair competition, to dumping of very cheap ceramic exports from the Far East, from China.”

  • Tony Little

    Take what time you need Craig, all the better for the wait.

    You know the old saying, I didn’t have time to send you a short letter, so I sent you a long one.

  • Geoffrey

    There is a whisky sale going on at Bonhams in Edinburgh now if anyone is feeling flush.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Hope you don’t overlook the possibility of Dr. David Kelly having been fed novichok which didn’t kill him fast enough, resulting in the Mossad kidon having to smother him. and the TVP having to move his body to Harrowdown Hill to claim it was suicide. Would it be found in the normal autopsy, and why was his body secretly exhumed years later, and cremated?

    Was MI6 afraid that the truth would finally come out?

    • michael norton

      I expect a big strong person put their hand over Dr.David Kelley’s mouth and nostrils untill he stopped breathing, then he was moved to the position in which he was found.

      • Blunderbuss

        No, it must have been Novichok and the Russians must have done it. What other explanation could there be?

        • Trowbridge H. Ford

          That the four people who spent the night of the murder on the Thames, apparently a Mossad kidon, must have done it, escaping after Louise Holmes was on the way dpwn the river to discover Kelly’s corpse.

  • ZigZag Wanderer

    I was only part way through my CNP ( citizen normalisation program ) when the Integrity Initiative website crashed due to overwhelming demand.
    I find Antonym’s worthless drivel to be extremely helpful to me in my quest to achieve PVS by the summer.

    • Blunderbuss

      Oh dear, does the citizen normalisation program put people in a Persistent Vegetative State?

  • Sharp Ears

    For information –

    UK Sells $445m Of Arms To Israel, Including Sniper Rifles
    Value of sales increase tenfold after 2014 Gaza war amid warnings UK weapons, including gear for snipers, could be used to kill Palestinians
    By Jamie Merrill

    March 05, 2019 – LONDON

    Britain has approved the sale of arms to Israel worth $445m since the 2014 Gaza war, including components for drones, combat aircraft and helicopters along with spare parts for sniper rifles, according to figures seen by Middle East Eye.

    The government data will raise fresh concerns that British-made weapons are being used by the Israeli military in the Occupied Territories, amid fears that components in sniper rifles used to kill scores of Palestinian civilians in recent weeks could have been made in the UK.

    What evil.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Kejjy’s killers had pried his mouth open, and stuffed stuff down his gulett after he was ambushed. including medication he was taking. What else was there”

    He wasn’t finally found in the position that Louise Holmes originally found him.

    • Trowbridge H. Ford

      Misspelling Kelly’s name got me thinking about other Kellys.

      Famous jjournalist Michael Hastings who was murdered six ears ago, was looking unto all those dodgy American generals. having ruined McCrystal’s career with famous article in Rolling Stone,. and pissing off Powell, Patreaus. et al., and getting into their girl friends, was allegedly onto Jill Kelley which Hastings’ wife denied after he was killed in that famous fireball in LA.

      It was all similar to what happened but differently to British hacker Gareth Williams, and the FBI was onto to him, forcing Hastings to tell Wikileaks that he was under threat, and dropping a big story he was looking into. He was murdered within hours.

      Was Hastings onto what happened to Dr, David Kelly? Assange and Wikileaks must have some ideas about our Anglo-American Murder Inc. in this matter,

  • Republicofscotland

    The criminally convicted US Special envoy to Venezuela Elliot Abrams, has hinted that nations that don’t back the USA’s stance on Venezuela might find themselves facing sanctions.

    Currently around only 50 odd countries back the Great Satan’s illegal coup against the democratically elected president of Venezuela, which means around 140 odd UN member countries have not signed up to the illegal overthrowing of Venezuela’s legitimate president.

  • Republicofscotland

    As the USA’s military budget decision is to soon to be decided, we have warhawk General Curtis Scaparrotti, who as the head of EUCOM is also the supreme NATO commander in Europe, screams that Russia is a danger to Europe, and that Europe needs more US hardware deployed within, possibly in Rota Spain.

    Of course its all nonsense, if any nations a threat to Europe it’s the USA, its aggressive foreign policies could see Europe become a battlefield to further US ambitions.

    We should be attempting to loosen ties with the US not strengthen them, to the detriment of relations with other nations that the Great Satan sees as asset rich, or no compliant trade wise.

    • Jack

      The brainwashing of america in europe is so strong it is ridiculous.
      It seems alot of europeans simply do not care to understand that US nor Russia for that matter, cares about us here in the middle one bit – they simply care about theselves and thier interest,
      alot europeans seems to swallow any threat propaganda coming from the US as “facts”.

  • N_

    Google, the BBC, the Guardian, the Heil, etc. are directing people’s attention to a video of a three-year-old boy having sulphuric acid thrown over him. That is no exaggeration.

    That is how sick the social conditions are that we live in.

    Distribution of such disgusting videos of children being abused – of anybody being abused in that way – should be criminalised, with especially long prison sentences for the directors and senior managers of Google who encourage tens of millions of people to watch them, and the directors of companies that own or operate internet pipelines along which the material is distributed.

    Twenty years ago, practically everyone would have agreed with what I wrote in the previous paragraph.

    What kind of videos will Google, the BBC and the Heil be distributing in 10 years’ time or even five?

    • jake

      People who, off topic, gratuitously point it out on blogs shouldn’t be immune from criticism either. Maybe long prison sentences for them too…what do you think, N. ?

      • Mighty Drunken

        So if people criticise X they are guilty of X? Might cause some problems. Though I guess it is similar to if you deny X then you are guilty of X. See Labour party!

  • Garth Carthy

    @Michael McNulty
    “Someone once said he thought David comes out with some outlandish stuff so the elite can more easily discredit him as some kind of kook, saying if he only stuck to the truth they’d probably have bumped him off.”

    Yes, I think most of us would agree that David Icke’s stuff is way out and ridiculous. However, I have to say that if you take some of his statements metaphorically, there does seem to be an essence of truth there sometimes. For example, he talks about a secretive Illuminati of shift-shaping lizards controlling the world. Well, if you think about it, the Neo-cons, the Rosthchilds, the Deep State – they all have the cold blood of lizards and ‘shape shift’ like actors on the world stage, speaking with many tongues – whatever it takes to get the masses to follow their agenda. I don’t think Teresa May is really a shape shifting lizard but I always have this feeling that I’m looking at a lizard when I see her. I’m not simply making a derogatory comment – I genuinely see a resemblance to a lizard when I see photos of her. And of course, she IS cold blooded…or of course I might need counselling!

    • MJ

      If you stuck a large carapace on Prince Philip’s back I swear he’d be indistinguishable from a giant tortoise.

      • Mighty Drunken

        Many philosophers have contemplated that reality is carried on the back of a turtle and it’s turtles all the way down. Which may explain why Prince Philip looks so old.

    • DiggerUK

      “or of course I might need counselling!”
      Well do not take Mr. Murray’s medicine. Let me assure you that supermarkets basic buy malt has just the same effect. His malt snobbery is down to an index linked civil service pension of course…_

    • Herbie

      Suzanne Moore, of The Guardian, did a piece on her dinner beside the PM;

      It could be argued she’s describing in more colloquial terms what Icke is trying to get across about those at the top.

      The thing is, when you know the secrets of how the world really works, how can you ever again make small-talk with one who does not.

      Apologies for linking to a conspiracy site, but this is an insight worth noting.

      • Herbie

        This is the F. Scott Fitzgerald quote on the rich and their dynasties.:Their deservedness. Their entitlement.

        ““Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me. They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand. They think, deep in their hearts, that they are better than we are because we had to discover the compensations and refuges of life for ourselves. Even when they enter deep into our world or sink below us, they still think that they are better than we are. They are different. ””

        In the next lesson we’ll look at how they got so rich and so so much better than the rest of us.

        • Charles Bostock

          To which pearl of wisdom (“the rich are different”)his friend Hemingway apparently replied “Yes, they are richer”.

          Which was a rather good riposte to an egregious bit of pocket philosophy.

  • michael norton

    Looks like the very most likely outcome will be No Deal.

    If there is to be another Referendum, Leave will win with a larger majority.
    If there is to be a delay, the U.K. will vote more Eurosceptically than before.

    Things are narrowing down to two choices.
    May’s Deal
    No Deal

    on time, as our law lays down.

  • Sharp Ears

    News to most?

    ‘The New Enclosure’

    ‘In her memoirs the late Margaret Thatcher wrote that privatisation must be “at the centre of any programme of reclaiming territory for freedom”. Since 1979 British prime ministers have been true to her word. Thatcher used territory in a metaphorical sense, but it was also true literally: the privatisation of land is the biggest, and least well-known, sell-off of the state’s assets.

    As Brett Christophers, a professor of economic geography, points out in our pages, almost 10% of land has been transferred from public into private ownership since Thatcher came to power. In his book, The New Enclosure, Prof Christophers calculates that approximately 2 million hectares of land – or 10 % of Britain – has disappeared from public hands, the bulk of which has entered corporate, as opposed to charity or community, ownership. This is a privatisation of half of the state’s estate, worth about £400bn, and dwarfs any other transfer of public wealth to private hands.’

  • Sharp Ears

    Sara Thornton, now of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, and speaking to the media currently on knife crime, was previously at ‘Thames Valley Police as the Assistant Chief Constable for Specialist Operations in November 2000 and was appointed Deputy Chief Constable in August 2003, where her responsibilities included performance and developing the strategic direction for the Force.’

    The death of Dr Kelly who died in July 2003 came within Thames Valley Police’s remit.

    I think I preferred the sound of the Association of Chief Police Officers which it has replaced.

  • Sharp Ears

    Reminder of Hodge’s beef with Corbyn from 1995

    From Private Eye at the time:

    “MILLIONAIRE newcomer to the House of Commons Margeret Hodge has had a tricky time with some of her fellow Labour MPs … A former leader of Islington Council and now a devoted Blairite member for Barking, Hodge agreed to debate Clause 4 with hard left MP Jeremy Corbyn in front of an earnest crowd at the Red Rose Centre in Islington”.

    “Corbyn argued to retain the public ownership clause while Hodge said electoral victory must come first. Corbyn won the crowd over completely – at which point Hodge turned from cool pragmatist into fuming maniac.

    She rose to reply and completely blew her gasket: she called the astonished crowd stupid and accused them of loving being in opposition and of having their heads in the sand.” And the conclusion of this encounter?

    “Of the hundred or so present, only two voted in favour of Hodge, one of them being Stephen Twigg, ex-president of the NUS (and now Hodge’s researcher).”

    From this article from last year:

    h/t TLN

    • michael norton

      Hodge and Corbyn are virtually contemporaries, with Corbyn, being five years her Junior and a couple of billion pounds poorer.
      Hodge was born in Egypt.
      It would have been better for the U.K. if she had stayed put.

  • Republicofscotland

    Being an old cynic, I find the devices with Irish stamps on them sent to various locations in London, and now one sent to Glasgow, (BBC news news claims a link between both) as suspicious in itself.

    Could MI5 be stirring pot as they say, afterall Brexit has left a bad taste in the mouth at Whitehall with regards to Ireland standing its ground.

      • Blunderbuss

        Warning, satire!

        “two of the devices had return Irish postal addresses”.

        Were they genuine addresses? To be that incompetent, the bombers would have to be Russian GRU agents.

        • Blunderbuss

          Warning, satire!

          Sorry, my mistake, the sender was Bus Éireann. Well, bus companies often try to blow up their rivals, don’t they?

      • Republicofscotland

        Add in “Suspicious package” found outside Westminster three hours ago, in my opinion they’re attempting to plant a seed of doubt and fear. What next a explosive device with the words backstop on it.

        • N_

          They are ramping up the fear of violent death to a higher level than I can ever remember, and government ministers are talking right now of putting the army on the streets of mainland Britain. Xenophobia is practically playing the part of the grim reaper.

    • Isa

      And insufficient postage . 2 euros in a packet that would cost at least 5.5 euros in standard post . It wouldn’t even make it out of the sorting centre . Someone playing dangerous games but not very proficiently .

    • Deb O'Nair

      It is in the interest of a post-Brexit UK to do away with the GFA as it contains within it the mechanism to begin the systematic breakup of the UK, i.e. a NI referendum on Irish reunification which does not require Westminster approval. I have repeatedly pointed this out starting with the incident were Gerry Adams house was attacked followed by a ‘retribution’ attack from some unheard of group called the “New IRA”, which coincided with an article in the Sunday Observer stating the GFA has not been good for the people of NI. Then there was the recent bomb at a court house, again by the “New IRA”. And now this recent episode. There has also been an uptick in media reporting that Brexit will reignite the troubles (always talking about Republicans being responsible) whereas the reality is that Republicans see their long held ambition to reunite Ireland being in the GFA and Brexit gives the Republican movement their first real chance of becoming the major party in the NIA. In cases like this it really is cui bono? I would hazard a guess that it is the UK security services running some former loyalist paramilitaries from, oh I dunno, the DUP perhaps, creating a false flag outfit for their own benefit.

      • IrishU

        Deb O’Nair,

        1. You are incorrect when you state the GFA permits ‘a NI referendum on Irish reunification which does not require Westminster approval.’ What the GFA actually states is, ‘the Secretary of State should call a referendum ‘if at any time it appears likely to him that a majority of those voting would express a wish that Northern Ireland should cease to be part of the United Kingdom and form part of a united Ireland.’ This would be accomplished by the introduction of legislation at Westminster.

        2. The New IRA was not an ‘unheard’ of group to many in Northern Ireland, it was yet another banding together of dissident republicans from the previous Continuity IRA, Real IRA and Óglaigh na hÉireann. The formation of the New IRA and the actions they were taking against rival drug dealers was widely covered in the NI media.

        3. The reason that there has been heavy media speculation (wrongly in my opinion) regarding an upsurge in republican violence post-Brexit is that any hard Border or weakening of Strand 2 of the GFA would affect Republican political aims / the aims of Sinn Fein.

        4. Brexit is being played for Sinn Fein gains but the DUP are also using it to bolster their base – clinging to a hard border as opposed to a customs border in the Irish Sea. Furthermore, after the results of the 2017 Assembly Election, the DUP will be using the spectre of SF majority at Stormont to increase unionist turnout.

        5. Your use of cui bono is misjudged. What does the British state have to gain from a destabilised NI? It is far more likely, and credible that dissident republicans sought to capitalise on the careless words uttered by SF, DUP and British politicians. Not everything is a false flag or the responsibility of Western Security Services.

  • Sharp Ears

    Sky News knock the BBC into a cocked hat on their factual reporting.

    Revealed: The areas of the UK where knife crime is rising the fastest
    The number of offences involving knives or sharp instruments has increased by 30% since 2011.
    6 March 2019 15:37, UK
    Home Office figures revealed there were 285 murders in the year 2017-18

    There is a National Audit Office chart within this long report showing the
    cuts in police funding and the rise in crime rates. By county for England and Wales.

    • Charles Bostock

      Hard lefties are leading the cry against the government in the matter of this stabbings epidemic; the line is that this epodemoc is due to the reduction in police numbers. In other words, the “power” of the police has been diminished.

      But was it not the same lefties who brought about another diminishment of police powers by being at the forefront of the move to restrict the police’s powers of stop and search?

      The previous stop and search powers would be pretty useful right now, wouldn’t they?

      But the hard lefties are not only the most incompetent bunch you’re ever likely to meet, they’re also the most hypocritical.

        • Contrary

          All Scotland gets in the news is ‘britain’s knife crime epidemic’, with the news failing, repeatedly, to mention that Scotland has made leaps and bounds in resolving the knife crime problem:

          Joanna Cherry MP asked the question of the Home Secretary, in the House of Commons, about rising knife crime in England, detailing how knife crime has reduced in Scotland since 2007 (by 64% I think ) due to the Scottish government taking a holistic approach and treating it as a public health matter, using prevention in society and keeping young people out of the justice system. There is a lot of info, clearly detailed, in her question, and the Home Secretary, a bit reluctantly, agrees that they will be looking at Scotland’s strategy (the met has already been up getting some hot tips, and others too apparently). It’s a short video on her Twitter and well worth a watch.

      • D_Majestic

        A pathetic attempt at transferring blame, Charles. Shortly after May became PM I found out that her cuts to police numbers, including firearms officers, (!) were reaching clearly idiotic levels. She and fellow Tories can protest all they like. Cardboard-cutout police officers are no help at all. And May is provably culpable.

        • Charles Bostock

          Do you not think that the previous stop and search powers would have been useful in countering the current knife crime epidemic? After all, the perps don’t carry them openly, they tend to hide them on their persons.

          • Mighty Drunken

            If the knives are hidden, by what means do police choose the people who are likely to possess knives? As only a tiny proportion of people carry knives, any type of stop and search will prove infective. Well unless we stop and search a lot of people.
            If police reduce knife crime it is likely through other reasons. Like their presence and stopping antisocial behaviour before it escalates. Another reason for the rise in knife crime is probably that the families these people are coming from are more stressed through economic reasons. This government has also reduced support for the poor and mentally ill.

          • Charles Bostock

            “If the knives are hidden, by what means do police choose the people who are likely to possess knives?”

            By common sense and a judicious application of common sense.

            “As only a tiny proportion of people carry knives, any type of stop and search will prove infective. ”

            Illogical : the more stopping and searching, the greater the chances of finding knives. As you yourself admot in your very next sentence, which says : “Well unless we stop and search a lot of people.”. If that’s what it takes, shouldn’t it be done? Doesn’t take long to frisk someone, as I’m sure you know.

            “Like their presence and stopping antisocial behaviour before it escalates. ”

            Ah, their “presence”. Yes, a copper on every park bench and on every street corner. But are you sure that we wouldn’t have the hard Lefties bleating on about a “police state” and a waste of money which could better be spent on {…enter your favorite cause…}?

            ” Another reason for the rise in knife crime is probably that the families these people are coming from are more stressed through economic reasons. ”

            If the reason is economic, would that not have led to an increase in the number of what you might call “economic” crimes, eg burglary, muggings, shoplifting, etc? But that hasn’t been the case as far as I’m aware.


            No. I think this wave of knife crime is just one of these manias which suddenly appear out of nowhere and for which people can find no real reason. The imitation effect, the madness of crowds. Like the wave of muggings people were alarmed about a couple of decades ago. The only good thing is that these manias subside (thankfully) as quickly and mysteriously as they appear.

            It is very shitty to try and make political capital out of it, but that’s another discussion.

          • Charles Bostock

            “By common sense and a judicious application of common sense” should of course have read :

            “By profiling and a judicious application of common sense”.

          • Anon1

            “If the knives are hidden, by what means do police choose the people who are likely to possess knives?”

            Young, black, male, looks/talks/dresses like a gang member.

  • michael norton

    Carlos Ghosn has left prison in Japan on bail,
    he has been striped of his three jobs, head of Nissan, head of Mitsubishi, head of Renault.

    I heard on the news tonight, 98% of people charged in Japan are found guilty.
    It is a feudal system.

    This was almost entirely political.
    Partly it was Brexit, partly it is the slow down in sales of new cars, partly the rise of India and China but mainly it was to rest the control away from The French State.

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