Heroes, Villains and Establishment Hypocrisy 567


Trump and Johnson’s populism have shaken the old Establishment, and raised some very interesting questions about who is and who is not nowadays inside the Establishment and a beneficiary of the protection of the liberal elite. Yesterday two startling examples in the news coverage cast a very lurid light on this question, and I ask you to consider the curious cases of Hunter Biden and Brendan Cox, two of the most undeserving and unpleasant people that can be imagined.

The BBC news bulletins led on the move to impeach Donald Trump for, as they put it, his efforts to get the President of Ukraine to undermine a political opponent. To be plain, I think Trump was quite wrong to get personally involved in this, but please park the entire subject of Donald Trump to one side for the next ten minutes.

What I find deeply reprehensible in all the BBC coverage is their failure to report the facts of the case, and their utter lack of curiosity about why Joe Biden’s son Hunter was paid $60,000 a month by Burisma, Ukraine’s largest natural gas producer, as an entirely absent non-executive director, when he had no relevant experience in Ukraine or gas, and very little business experience, having just been dishonorably discharged from the Navy Reserve for use of crack cocaine? Is that question not just little bit interesting? That may be the thin end of it – in 2014-15 Hunter Biden received US $850,000 from the intermediary company channeling the payments. In reporting on Trump being potentially impeached for asking about it, might you not expect some analysis – or at least mention – of what he was asking about?

As far as I am aware, the BBC have not reported at all the other thing Trump was asking Zelensky about – Crowdstrike. Regular readers will recall that Crowdstrike are the Clinton linked “cyber-security” company which provided the “forensic data” to the FBI on the alleged Russian hack of the DNC servers – data which has been analysed by my friend Bill Binney, former Technical Director of the NSA, who characterises it as showing speeds of transfer impossible by internet and indicating a download to an attached drive. The FBI were never allowed access to the actual DNC server – and never tried, taking the DNC’s consultants word for the contents, which itself is sufficient proof of the bias of the “investigation”.

Crowdstrike also made the claim that the same Russia hackers – “Fancy Bear” – who hacked the DNC, hacked Ukrainian artillery software causing devastating losses of Ukrainian artillery. This made large headlines at the time. What did not make any MSM headlines was the subsequent discovery that all of this never happened and the artillery losses were entirely fictitious. As Crowdstrike had claimed that it was the use of the same coding in the DNC hack as in the preceding (non-existent) Ukraine artillery hack, that proved Russia hacked the DNC, this is pretty significant. Trump was questioning Zelensky about rumours the “hacked” DNC server was hidden in the Ukraine by Crowdstrike. The media has no interest in reporting any of that at all.

It is plain in that case that Trump is the media’s villain and the Bidens, father and son, are therefore heroes being protected by the Establishment media. Now let us look at the case of Brendan Cox.

Boris Johnson’s behaviour in the Commons two nights ago was reprehensible. Watching the unrepentant and aggressive braying of the Tory MPs, I was genuinely concerned about the consequences for democracy should these empowered right wingers ever get a majority. Johnson has removed the social restraint which used to cloak their atavistic instincts.

This Tory display also very much reinforced what I have been saying for years, that we will not gain Scottish Independence through a repeat of 2014. We were allowed a referendum with only moderate cheating by the British state purely because they believed there was no chance we could win. They have been disabused. There will never be a Section 30 order an an agreed referendum again. We will have to seize Independence by means which the British state will deem unlawful. Anybody not prepared to do that is not serious about Independence.

I digress. Johnson’s behaviour is appalling and he is at an interesting stage where the Establishment and its media is unsure whether to embrace or repudiate him, the calculation depending on whether they think he will win, and on the impact of Brexit on their personal financial interests. But as with Trump, I ask you to set aside your judgement on Johnson and not think of him for a moment.

Yesterday BBC news programmes brought us repeated appearances of Brendan Cox to comment on Boris Johnson and other MP’s parliamentary behaviour. This Brendan Cox:

One such allegation was that Cox pinned a co-worker to a wall by her throat while telling her ‘I want to fuck you’. Cox left the organisation before being subjected to scrutiny on this and other allegations. However, another woman, a senior US official who met him at a Harvard University event, made similar allegations against him, ‘of grabbing her by the hips, pulling her hair, and forcing his thumb into her mouth’ ‘in a sexual way’. In contrast to Assange’s treatment, and despite a social-media furore, for nearly three years there was largely a media blackout on the story. At last, in February 2018, a right-wing tabloid broke the embargo and reported the allegations, and other news organisations had to follow suit. Finally, ‘Cox apologised for the “hurt and offence” caused by his past behaviour’ and announced he was withdrawing from public life.

I strongly recommend you to read that last linked article. Cox is very much on the wavelength of the Establishment media, a full member of the New Labour neo-liberal elite who shuttled between jobs in the Labour Party and in high paying neo-liberal propaganda organisation Save the Children. Cox was personally pocketing £106,000 a year plus expenses from donations to the “charity”. A serial unfaithful sexual aggressor, his wife’s murder sees him recast by the media as the grieving survivor of a perfect marriage. Precisely his strongest political supporters – Jess Phillips, Stella Creasy etc – are Julian Assange’s bitterest opponents due to far flimsier, hotly denied and less attested sexual allegations than those against Cox. But neo-liberals get a free pass from the modern feminist movement (cf Bill Clinton).

Boris Johnson’s behaviour was a dsgrace. But that is no reason for the BBC rehabilitation of the “retired from public life” sexual predator.

The fascinating thing is the binary, good versus evil, narrative which is being pursued in the liberal media. Trump and Johnson are bad. Therefore Hunter Biden and Brendan Cox must be good. The truth, of course, is much more complex than that. I am afraid to say that if you want an excessive simplification, a more accurate one would be that the entire political elite on all sides are self-serving and venal.

There is a more interesting story inside that, where significant portions of the public have lost respect for the Establishment, due in large part to the vast and increasing wealth gap in society, but this disillusion has been battened on by populist charlatans, and particularly directed against immigrants. This feels like an extremely unstable phase in society and politics. But instability brings the possibility of radical change, which is indeed much needed. We must all work for good from it.

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567 thoughts on “Heroes, Villains and Establishment Hypocrisy

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  • Ralph

    Regarding biden, and what a nasty pile of murderous shit he is, consider this background article: https://www.stalkerzone.org/joe-biden-and-ukraine-a-quick-reminder/

    The warmongering, mass murdering USG’s involvement/interference goes way back, and nuland admitted that the USG had spent (at least) $5 billion on ukraine, and that amount of money goes very far in a poor country like ukraine, with its massive corruption, and pays for snipers to shoot both the police and civilians in yet another ‘color revolution’ called Maidan.

    obama had almost washed his hands of ukraine, leaving it to biden, who even joked that he spoke more to poroshitko (the former pres) than his wife. No problem for biden to also support neo-nazis if it achieves the USG’s aim of causing trouble for Russia, while civilians get murdered in the former Eastern part of ukraine.

    So the focus should be on more than biden and his corruption: he is responsible for the deaths of thousands in ukraine, like that other evil sick shit bliar being responsible for the many deaths of civilians in Iraq.

  • Yonatan

    Pot calling kettle black:

    In 1998 Biden Warns Of Impeaching A President Because Of Politics

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1b9faG2gHB0

    Biden states at a CFR meeting that he withheld a $1 billion loan to Ukraine until the Ukraine regime fired the Ukraine state prosecutor. The prosecutor was investigating Burisma Holdings, an energy company that Biden’s son was heavily invested in.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3116&v=WGJIXFqOqVQ

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCF9My1vBP4&t=75

  • Willie

    Treachery, treason, betrayal, surrender are the emotive words that Boris Jonson uses to evoke hatred against folks with a different political view.

    It is the language of an Adolf Hitler – and it is working. The right wing thugs are unleashed and on the streets. Jo Cox MP murdered by a right wing fanatic is dismissed by the PM as humbug – and we can honour her horrible death by delivering Johnson’s vision of Brexit.

    Hate, hate, hate is what this elite piece of shit inculcates, and hate he will deliver. Maybe the best way to honour Remainers would be for the IRA to put a bullet through his father Stanley’s forehead. It is the same logic as his son espouses in the honouring of Jo Cox and of course Stanley had no concerns when he said who cares if the Irish shoot each other.

    But don’t let me say it but I do think the time is coming when we will see some more slaughtered politicians. The system is now not toxic, it is murderous with people with murder on their minds. The hostile environment is here.

    Delivered to us by a right wing Conservative Party who have unleashed English fascism.

    Now you know why the Americans wrote into their constitution that it was civic right to be able to bear arms against a rogue government that turned against the people.

    • bill lazario

      willie (and craig) you nailed it. again.

      often i wondered how it was that an old red crayola lyric, ‘a letter bomb is an apt expression’ lingered so in my mind. when we are beyond toxic there are few directions to go in. even when i still lived in england i urged anyone i knew who mysteriously persisted with the bbc impartiality myth to check out their alex salmond fit up campaign during the scottish independence ‘coverage.’ now i only half-jokingly tell those same impenitente that if i ever check establishment media headlines it’s merely in the hope of assassination news.

      sherlock holmes once told watson how grateful he was (during a 3 day pea souper) that he did not live in the murky shadowlands of assassinations or else his life would be in grave peril. well, however climatically challenged we are, i for one yearn for that fog to hasten on in.

    • djm

      “The right wing thugs are unleashed and on the streets” Please do post an example of this.

      “Jo Cox MP murdered by a right wing fanatic” JokeOx activist was murdered by a societal misfit who felt himself marginalised by the actions of his parliamentary representative.

      “Her murder is dismissed by Boris as Humbug” Utter, Utter, Bollox. Boris quite rightly pointed out the faux outrage & triggered the usual suspects. Do these people think we are stupid ? We plainly saw them receiving messages on their phones in the Chamber at the HoC giving them the “line to take” Do come back when McDonnell/Lammy/Phillips see fit to apologise for their appallingly inflammatory language over the past 3+ years.

      • Caratacus

        @djm – Well said.

        Who was it, only a little while back, were singing, “though cowards flinch and traitors fear …” in the House of Commons? Oh – it’s only a song. That’s OK then.

      • kathy

        “Jo Cox MP murdered by a right wing fanatic JokeOx activist was murdered by a societal misfit who felt himself marginalised by the actions of his parliamentary representative.”

        He was a member if “Britain First” which is as nasty and racist as you get.

        I will refrain from commenting on your spelling of “Jo Cox” except to say that it is totally disgusting and I think you should be chucked off this forum.

    • Smokey Bear

      I’ve wondered if the people who oppose Boris and Donald understand that they may have to fight in the streets to defend their democracies? Both Boris and Donald are fond of threatening that they will unleash their modern brown-shirts if they don’t get their way. On the other hand, the biggest march I’ve seen in London in the last year was the Remainers.

      The proper reaction to an un-elected leader shutting down parliament and democracy at a critical time was to have millions of angry people marching to his door. We will see if things come to that, probably sooner in England but also quite possibly next year in America. And we’ll see if the Resistance is willing to show up when they have to, or if they leave the streets to the Brown-shirts?

      The most powerless people in America are the citizens of its colony of Puerto Rico. And yet, Puerto Rico just showed everyone how even the powerless can make their voices heard in largely non-violent protests. The protests were non-violent. The police were at time violent. Yet the protesters had the strength of spirit to protest every evening and never, never give up. And thus the most powerless people in America succeeded in forcing the removal of a Governor.

  • mark golding

    Stella Creasy is acutely aware of the present instability in society that Craig spot-lights in his keynote message that profound change towards ‘good’ is essential to stabiise society. War hawk Creasy has a doctorate in Social Psychology from the London School of Economics and her connections to the Peerage through family ties (to further her advancement in society) has resulted in her becoming antithetical towards the underclass, social cohesion and, social capital.

    For change to occur within our society, I believe, we must all fight to diminish the power of those corrupted or bribed by privileged and awfully aristocratic rulers who steer the Establishment’s invasion of our lifeworld.

    That violation of people’s lives has a genesis in eugenics and Creasy, I believe, is a disciple of that abomination, referring to the Palestinians as underdogs and terrorists and amplifying the plague of antisemitism within society.

      • mark golding

        Cummings indeed ‘nevermind’. Do not underestimate this ‘scorched earth’ practitioner – “Winter is Cummings”.and ‘New Conservatives’ is the populist genie in the bottle that Cummings will let out when parliamentary chaos is at peak and ‘political’ degrades to apathetic. Or has bravado masked a precarious future?

        • Shatnersrug

          Well everyone one of his plans has collapsed in farce. And his claims that he swung Brexit are highly dubious, given the slim margin it could have got 1% either way

          The guy is (literally) a big head and a farcical drunk.

    • Dungroanin

      It has become long clear that the Co-Operative Labour party is a host to many a Blairite clone.

      There is a (predictable?) thread there, that needs unraveling.

  • Tatyana

    It’s amazing how they manage to use the same motive all the time. Mrs. Clinton’s misdoings, Mr. Biden’s private interests, Snowden’s and Assange’s revelations of US govt misdoings – any crime of the power is explained by Russian intrigues, and the people eats it.
    btw, I know a good joke for this situation.

    We’ve got a saying “Если ты настолько умный, то почему ты тогда такой бедный?” *if you are so clever, so why so poor?*
    I live in an amazing country whose government can literally do anything, even to pick its own man for US President 🙂 Why is Russia still not the first economy in the world?

    • James Cook

      Interesting perspective. I have been ruminating over similar thoughts, but the most recent mess in the US is perplexing.

      The absolute loser is the Ukraine. They will be now be viewed as completely corrupt and untouchable. Who would benefit from this? NOT the EU, NOT the USA, but wait …….perhaps once everyone shuns the Ukraine, Russian will be there to clean things up?

      This most recent mess in the US, along with the never-ending-BREXIT and chaos in the Un-United Kingdom can only benefit other countries.

      CM is correct, if the Scots really want to have a go on their own, this would be the time to limit the damage from the ever expanding CHAOS the is engulfing the UK and the USA.

      Rot from the inside, will accomplish what frontal assaults could not?

      • Tatyana

        In Russia we have a good anti-corruption duo of Putin and Navalny. Putin is working on the oligarchs and high-officials, and Navalny controls Putin and his entourage 🙂 Ukraine could make the same, if they wanted to.

        As to Russia cleaning the things up for Ukraine – I don’t know who would want to deal with the country as it is today, totally indepted with IMF debts, with anti-russian population and pro-US powers. They ruined everything good between us. They are not reliable partners.
        I think most russians would say – Not at the cost of my labor. No discounts for gas. No credits. No help. Crimea didn’t approve the new ukrainian politics, neither Donbass, but the rest of Ukraine eagerly supported, so, let them go their way, alone.

          • Tatyana

            На здоровье! @Kempe 🙂
            Please open your mouth wider when you laugh, I’d propose as wide a smile that the gas cylinder could pass (*unlike in Douma, Syria*).
            Or at least, a passage for a small spray gas cartridge from the Russian police ?(* like the one we saw in the Moscow protests).
            Smile wide at me, and I’ll smile back to you 🙂

      • Piotr Berman

        Ukraine is indeed a looser, but not so much because it “will be seen as corrupt”, but because it is indeed corrupt AND because the least rational elements of its political spectrum are encouraged and enabled by “western allies”.

      • Wikikettle

        James Cook. Yes James, Ukraine is the example of what happens when you get the ‘$emocracy’ adding to the Azov brigade. After
        the Great Patriotic War, it must be galling for the Russians to see Neo Nazis back and being supported by $$, next door.

        • Tatyana

          it’s not galling, but scary.
          they’re completely crazy brutal over-testosteroned armed males, who dream to kill Russians.
          Look at the page of their ideologist Oleg Odnorozhenko, I understand you may don’t know russian language, but at least just have a look at pictures
          https://www.facebook.com/oleg.odnorozhenko1

          That is what he says:
          “All foreign ethno-racial groups will be subject to restriction and control, with their subsequent deportation to their historical homeland. Since we, the Ukrainian social-nationalists, consider the so-called “human races” as separate biological species, and consider only the White European to be Homo Sapiens in the biological sense, we consider it our direct duty to exclude any interracial (interspecies) contacts that lead to interracial (interspecies) mixing and, therefore, to the extinction of the White Man”
          *Speaking of “the White Europeans” they exclude southern types: Mediterranean, Caucasian, Pamir-Fergana etc.
          https://ukraina.ru/opinion/20190323/1023074650.html

          • Dungroanin

            Completely agree T. Fortunately the dumb indoctrinated dottards are fewer by the day.

            But Ukraine shouldn’t be abandoned. Chernobyl isn’t history. It will need ALL humans attention for many thousands of years constantly to keep it safe unless some superhuman means are found.( Also it can have a great future as a link between the Eurasia and the EU partnership.)

            ‘Everybody should be sent back to where they came from !’

            I’ll be surprised if they even understand that they are the ones who may want to be moved away.

            The mentality of killing Russians and white supremacy is also not restricted to the dotards of Ukraine – they are created, paid for and promoted by the same people across the world from the top of Canada to the bottom of Australasia. (Ukip, Afd…proud boys), But they are going no farther and are in retreat across the planet. So being virtual realists they are planning a escape to space!!!

            Meanwhile the marriage of Russian and Europe proceeds at pace – i do hope nordstream2 goes live before winter and we can remove the excuse for further fracking. What are the reports of it there?

  • lysias

    I remember thinking when Jo Cox was killed that this could be the Deep State acting to depress the Yes vote and increase the No vote in the Brexit referendum. At least here in the U.S., the security organs have a history of using the mentally ill. A lot of this sordid history is recounted in “Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties” by Tom O’Neill.

  • writeon

    I was listening to a short interview with an Amercian supporter of Donald Trump. I think he was from Republicans Abroad or something. Anyway, It was pretty clear what his ‘role’ in the BBC interview was. He was cast as the ‘fool’ for having the timerity to actually defend a man like Trump, who is simply Bad, beyond redemption and a threat to everything respectable ‘liberals’ pretend they stand for.

    He attempted to adress the Biden’s interests in Ukraine, but was interupted. He mentioned the removal of the Ukrainian prosecutor, but was interupted. He said that Joe Biden had boasted when VP that he had put the Ukrainians in their place and threatened them about holding back military aid, but was interupted. Then he valiantly brought up… ‘Crowdstrike’, but was interupted almost before he finished the word! And this kind of ‘censorship’ happens a lot.

    The journalists know the story they want to tell and the ‘roles’ they designagte the main ‘characters’ in this partisan and controlled narrative.

    Then there’s Boris Johnson, a railing, brutish, charlatan. A man who rightly believes the world is his oyster. He’s always been able to get away with stuff, through bluster, ‘charm’ and his family’s wealth and status. He represents the hooligan element of the ruling class.

    Think how he’s acting now, when he’s on the ropes and has no majority in parliament behind him; then imganine how he’ll behave if he wins the next election and does have a parliamentary majority!

  • Tatyana

    New commentary on Biden today in russian news:
    https://ria.ru/20190927/1559210907.html

    “Ukrainian investigators did not interrogate former us Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter in the investigation of the company Burisma Group, said Deputy Prosecutor General, the Head of the Specialized anti-corruption Prosecutor’s office (SAP) of Ukraine, Nazar Holodnitsky on radio “Novoye Vremya”.
    “… we act according to the law. When that case was closed (*August, 2017), the Prosecutor did the legal thing, because there were no investigative actions within nine months”

    Nice law 🙂 Makes it possible to sit relaxed in a cozy chair for 9 months, and then just close the case because no one did anything. Very convenient!

    • writeon

      People in the UK, politicians and journalists; know next to nothing about the Ukraine and the Americans know even less. What exactly was Hunter Biden doing in Ukraine and why was he being paid a fortune for doiing it? That question won’t be aksed by our journalists.

      What we’re seeing is an attempt by a section of the CIA, the Democrats and their media allies, to undermine the President of the United States and attempt to remove him from office undemocratically so he can’t win the next election and the American voters aren’t allowed to vote for him again.

      When I heard that Joe Biden was the likely Democratic persidential candidate I laughed out loud. He’s the perfect candidate if one wants to lose to Donald Trump, bigtime! Biden is an even worse candidate than Hilary Clinton. He’s the candidate of the Democratic Establishment and is their desparate attempt to cling onto power at any cost and resist the party’s move to the social democratic left and the coming to power of new and far younger people.

      • Tatyana

        It’s a pity the UK and the US people do not know russian language, which is spoken by the Russians and the Ukrainians. That is why the UK and the US people have to rely on their journalists.
        It is a pity that the UK and the US people believe that state propaganda exists only in evil undemocratic countries like Russia and there is freedome of speech in the UK and the US, and the media are making their news from the honest investigative journalists.

        • Tatyana

          Hunter Biden in a nutshell (seems like it is correct idiom, sorry if used wrong) :
          – graduated from Yale University
          – worked as a senior Vice President of MBNA America Bank
          – Bill Clinton appointed him the Director of e-Commerce at the U.S. Department of Commerce
          – 2002 left the civil service and became a lobbyist
          – 2009 vice-president of Amtrack
          – 2014 a member of the Board of Directors of ‘Burisma’ holding
          – 2015 the first energy security forum in Monte Carlo with the support of the Prince of Monaco and the Atlantic Council
          – worked for ‘Burisma’ up to April 2019 (*The Hill claimed that Burisma transferred to Rosemont Seneca Partners more than $160 thousand monthly. However, the investigation was never completed, and in 2016 Viktor Shokin (ukrainian prosecutor investigating the Burisma case) was fired (due to ultimatum of Joe Biden).
          – besides Biden, “Burisma” has two very famous Directors. One of them is former Polish President Alexander Kwasniewski and the other is the former head of the CIA’s counterterrorism center, Joseph Cofer Black.

          sources
          https://www.currenttime.tv/a/hunter-biden-ukraine/30183903.html
          https://www.rt.com/news/416888-biden-fire-ukrainian-prosecutor/

          • Donaldson

            Your use of the idiom is perfect, and thank you for that information regarding Cofer Black. I always appreciate your comments.

          • Tatyana

            Thank you, Donaldson.

            Ukrainian side of the Burisma Group is Nikolay Zlochevski, he is founder and owner.
            Former Head of the State Committee of natural resources (this state body distributes licenses for mineral rights, in russian it is “the right to develop subsoil”).
            Later he became the Minister of Environment Protection, and the licensing service was his subordinate.
            These two time periods Burisma got licenses for the main part of her fields.

            Convinient, eh? No one expects bees to vote against honey 🙂

            When he was accused of corruption he left the country. They always avoid investigations and leave the country, mostly for London, you know it is an old ex-USSR oligarchic tradition 🙂 I think Zlochevsky obeyed the ritual 🙂

  • Adrian Parsons

    1. Once again, CM wastes an ideal opportunity to clear up some of the confusion surrounding the DNC hack/leak by failing to expound on his “inside knowledge”. There is either a psychological or a substantiating problem.

    2. Once again, CM conflates the economic argument against unlimited immigration with “racism”. Ignorant, either by design or intellectual limitation.

    • Michael

      It’s ironic Brexiteers are called racists when one Remainer most desperate to defy democracy is Tony Blair, a dreadful authoritarian anti-democrat who’s killed more brown people than anybody else alive. He started his wars beside Clinton and had bombed Iraq at least twice before many of us had even heard of the idiot Bush Junior, so Remainers have perhaps the most right-wing evil man in their camp.

      • kathy

        “It’s ironic Brexiteers are called racists when one Remainer most desperate to defy democracy is Tony Blair”

        Well it only proves that the accusation by brexiters that remainers are anti-democratic is false, given the fact that we also hate him,

  • King of Welsh Noir

    At the risk of being deleted for being off-topic, I’ve heard that Craig is going to make a crowd-funded documentary on the Skripals. (Who of course are never off-topic on this blog.) Is this true and where do we send the moolah?

  • michael norton

    “Trump and Johnson’s populism have shaken the old Establishment”
    they have and the old Establishment fights back extremely hard.
    Trump seems to ever be at threat of being impeached, usually by the Democrats, who really despise his populism.
    Johnson’s opposition, including some Conservatives, detest his populism and do him down consistently.

    Yet Trump and Johnson remain very popular with the voters/public.
    It is being said that new people are signing up to the Conservative party.

    I think it is more that the oppostions are so unpopular, they are frighten of the electorate.
    They feel the voters no longer know their place, which should be, beneath the contempt of their betters.

  • Theophilus

    When the Spealker decided to intervene to give Remainers a helping hand notably with the ‘Surrender Act’ he made it inevitable that the Leave camp would start to play rough. Johnson is only doing what he has to do and he has to do it because it is now clear as Rees Mogg said the other day ‘ now they are going to throw everything they have at us because they know they only have a few weeks to stop Brexit.’ It is deeply disturbing that the Supreme Court looked at the question of the proroguing of parliament without any reference to the scandalous activities of the Speaker. Baronees Hales was suspiciously keen to restrict the scope of the case. The way the government’s case for prorogation and in court afterwards was way too timid. If the Supreme Court want to wade into politics as they have done then the hearings should reflect it with a bit less deference from the lawyers. Any idea that the decision was not political is overturned by the fact that they allowed the arch corrupt proroguer John Manor to intervene. Are they crazy or do they have no knowledge of British political history of the last 25 years. If so someone should have told them. The fact that the decision was unanimous but at the same time completely at variance with the Court of Appeal is highly suspicious. It is extremely rare for eleven lawyers to agree about anything.

    • remember kronstadt

      ‘It is extremely rare for eleven lawyers to agree about anything.’
      Using their wise judgement they would have been acutely aware that any ambiguity would be seized on by the anti-democratic Johnson faction. Totalitarianism has its place.

    • michael norton

      The Speaker has claimed he will go at the end of the session on Halloween.
      The fact that John choose this date tells a lot.
      He will make it his duty to stop Brexit, probably in any form.
      He is a despicable character, let’s hope the next speaker will be impartial.

      • giyane

        michael norton

        ” He will make it his duty to stop Brexit, probably in any form.”

        Is that a prophecy or a wish?
        is he more despicable than the despicable david cameron, the despicable rt hon theresa may, the despicable jeremy hunt who rolled his eyes at the despicable Oaf Johnson. or the despicable ERG who despicably voted against one form of brexit, or the despicable Jeremy Corbyn who introduced matters of important principle into the Tory abbattoir of our rights and priveleges enjoyed under the EU? the word is pretty meaningless in this context. Don’t you agree?

    • Dungroanin

      ” ‘ now they are going to throw everything they have at us because they know they only have a few weeks to stop Brexit.’ ”

      It is the ERG and the hard brexit rainmakers and their willing ‘foes’ in Parliament, who have thrown everything including the aged monarch. Because it is THEY who know they have just a few weeks of clock to rundown for that HARD Brexit. Or they are BUST.

      LOL. Can’t wait to see the meltdown on the 18th as that desperate gambit fails like everyone of Wylie Coyote’s did.

  • pete

    It is sometimes hard to get one’s head around exactly how deceitful the BBC news can be. To leave crucial details from a news report out because it does not fit easily into the main narrative you want to sell the public or because it exposes embarrassments to the government goes beyond ordinary lying into the dangerous world of manipulative propaganda.
    I get a broad sweep of the headline news stories from a variety of sources, not just the BBC, however I increasingly need to refer to alternative voices online to get fuller facts and a more credible narrative. The BBC has no excuse for misinforming people, given the size of its news operations worldwide, I simply cannot believe it was unaware of the important background to the stories Craig has revealed. I am sure some of the reporters will have known these facts and I blame the editorial team for leaving us clueless, they should be deeply ashamed.
    As for giving the reprehensible Mr Cox air time to express his views, that was a mistake too.
    Good for you Craig, more power to your elbow.

    • Deb O'Nair

      “The BBC has no excuse for misinforming people”

      There is no excuse, but there is a reason; Cameron stuffed the senior management with Tories and the senior reporting staff are all (quite literally) dyed-in-the-wool Tories. BBC News and Current Affairs has so veered off to the right in the last ten years that Sky News looks good in comparison.

    • Dungroanin

      Give them all up – all Msm news – after 6 weeks the head clears. Try it, it’s better tgen giving up smoking and drinking and running marathons!

      John Humphrey – SEVENTY SIX years old! Not even 67. Lets get them all out of their comfy tenures for life propagandising like so many Haw haw’s.

    • remember kronstadt

      Love Arthur but principles and noble aims didn’t bring a better future for the miners and neither will it for Brexiteers.

    • Ian

      Because he is entirely irrelevant to UK politics, and was a failure as a leader i.e. no hero. Your ignorance of the UK is risible. Desperate google acts of alt right fiction.

      • Loony

        The questions you were invited to address is whether or not Mr. Scargill can plausibly be described as a “right wing fascist” and whether the Morning Star forms part of the “rabid right wing fascist press”

        Unusually for you to decided to respond with an ad-hominem attack on both me and Mr. Scargill. How you think any of this contributes to the development of your own or anyone else’s understanding escapes me.

        Logically your responses would suggest either that you ignorant and determined to remain so as you consider ignorance a virtue or alternatively you believe that you already have a perfect understanding but are unwilling to share your perfect understanding with others as you believe your knowledge elevates you into some form of Priest class.

  • Arby

    “…I was genuinely concerned about the consequences for democracy…” If the people support Britain’s arms sales to Saudi Arabia, and other evils, I guess democracy isn’t such a good thing, Is it?

  • michael norton

    Scotland’s first minister Ms. Nicola Sturgeon has warned that Mr Johnson could force through a No-Deal Brexit unless the opposition acts.

    Yes that is Boris’s plan.

  • Arby

    Neoliberal refers to a system, not (directly) to politics. I’m surprised to see very knowledgeable people get this wrong. Neoconservatism is an ideology or philosophy. Neoliberalism, which, in my view very much depends of those with neocon mindsets, is about the liberalization of everything capitalist. Finance is freed from rules. Capitalists are freed from rules and so forth. To refer to that neoliberal Bill Clinton isn’t wrong, if you’re discussion free trade or something.

  • remember kronstadt

    One of my favourite reads was The World Turned Upside Down: Radical Ideas During the English Revolution by Christopher Hill which I recommend. However, today the media, which one can confidently say is a chorus of lies, presents universal events upside down. News presentation and presenters is combative, argumentative and enter discourse with ready formed opinions asserted as truths. Interviewees, too often simply happy to be in the news, are fodder. It’s come to this:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFbJIquSkj0

  • Goose

    The upper echelons of the DNC are probably only so outraged because the phone conversation involved their man Biden. If Trump had asked for dirt on say Sanders, the soon to be octogenarian Nancy Pelosi and other leading Dem Senator Chuck Schumer would’ve likely just shrugged it off?

    It’s amazing, how in the deeply uninspiring Biden, the corporate Democrats have managed to find the one person from the field of candidates, who could actually lose to Trump in 2020.

    • remember kronstadt

      Yes it’s amazing that the entitlement corporatist Democrats would have Biden on their candidate list just as it was with Hilary – age and biddability appear to be the main qualifications. Emptiness is a requisite and anyone with content is problematic. Vote Bernie!

    • Loony

      No-one is going to beat Trump. Not necessarily because Trump is so wonderful but because the Democrats are collectively insane.

      Here is Joe Biden boasting about how he had a Ukrainian prosecutor fired so as to prevent an investigation into Burisma. Burisma employed his son for around $50,000/month – something that Biden claimed to have no knowledge of.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXA–dj2-CY

      The candidate most likely to beat Trump would be Tulsi Gabbard. However the Democrats detest Gabbard far more than they detest Trump, and as such her candidacy will be nobbled.

      Both Trump and Gabbard are against endless foreign military interventions, something that makes them attractive to the general population. For the crime of not wanting to purposelessly kill foreign people Trump is perpetually hounded, Gabbard is ignored and the general population are smeared as being deplorable.

  • N_

    I wonder what event Boris Johnson will use for his first airing of the “OK” (aka the “WP”) hand signal? This looks like the way things are going:

    1. Calling an extension of the Brexit date a “surrender”, which you’d rather be “dead in a ditch” than request, “isn’t” inflammatory.

    2. Banning criticism of people’s reasons for using racist language “isn’t” racist.

    3. “It’s just an OK symbol. Honest!”

    • Yarkob

      it’s also the universal scuba diving signal for OK. It’s a hand gesture i used for about a decade when a diver. some knobbish undergrad assistant at a newspaper decided, much like the pepe the frog image, it could be co-opted into the collective gaslight “the fascists are coming” pearl-clutching fantasies.

      you’ve been had. have an OK hand sign from me, the notable fascist. sigh

      • Yarkob

        and just to mention, the HK protesters, the New Darlings of the intellectual left and Neocons both, are now using both the Pepe image and the Union flag as rallying emblems. The former pushed by the media as the “symbol” of the Alt-right (but actually a prank in 4chan); the latter the actual totem of centuries of a former occupying empire.

        the mind boggles.

        Black is white. Ignorance is strength etc.

  • Smokey Bear

    Why would anybody want to hide an old server? Destroying it would be simple. Anyone with a screwdriver and a large magnet could simply disassemble it and erase all data. For that matter, run it over with a truck or throw it into the ocean. Or all of the above combined. Lots of ways to make sure nobody could ever look closely at it.

    The only reason to hide it would be if one wanted to retrieve it later. And there is no likely reason why anyone would want to do that. Maybe if someone wanted to blackmail the Clintons so they hid it for such a future use? But these days, there’s no real reason to blackmail the Clintons, and the whole idea assumes that the server was in the hands of an enemy of the Clintons who would want to blackmail them. And if that was the case, Trump would be talking about paying to get it, not investigating whether its been hidden in the Ukraine.

    • Goose

      A server or PC is only its storage – hdds or if newer /richer ssds.

      You could zero-write those with a simple Windows command line or Linux terminal command. Data irretrievable

      • David

        or use a ‘commercial’ program , say BleachBit? BleachBit is a free and open-source disk space cleaner, privacy manager, and computer system optimizer however, I’m uncertain as to how effective Hillary’s favorite program would be against SSD overprovisioning algos, or magnetic domain remnance imaging of rotary….

        very careful very expensive forensic steps might just get through ‘standard’ overwrites, (hence my precautionary ‘privacy enhancing’ use of a bucket of seawater as a disk decay enhancer), not sure that I’d ship anything seriously to Kiev

        • Yarkob

          maybe it was already there. who said it was shipped there? a large part of the “Russiagate” hoax came out of Ukraine. not as much as the uk, but…

  • fwl

    People have been asking whether it is ever acceptable to act unlawfully.

    In courts Judges will say no it is not possible, but with a few exceptions from time to time for example where the party complaining about the wrong doing has acquiesced in the wrong doing, or just allowed it to continue for a long time typically 20 years. as with easement. Generally though when Judges get to do the deciding they will say you must obey the law. Quite right too.

    However, Judges don’t always make the decision and in the Crown Court in criminal trials the jury decides whether a defendant is guilty. Judges direct the jury that if the offence is made out, if they find that D did X Y and Z with a particular mental element then they must convict. But juries don’t give reasons and don’t have to convict. Juries have from time to time concluded that D has done something but they decide so what they don’t see it as wrong, or they consider the sentence too harsh, or that D was set up etc. and they stick up two fingers and find not guilty.

    In other words we are all familiar with the decision process where the decision makers are 12 ordinary people and they make the final decision not the judge and unlike the judge they can if they wish agree amongst themselves that it was okay for the defendant to have broken the law and find him or her not guilty.

    Although I agree with the Supreme Court decision and am pleased that Gina Miller brought her case I can’t help but note that there are similarities between referenda and jury decisions. They both take the decision away from the professional class / the political and judicial technocrats and give it to 12 ordinary people. Given that the electorate were informed that the decision would be implemented the referendum outcome should be treated as final, as if it were a jury decision.

    Anyway this is all by way of wondering what if the Supreme Court had been 11 ordinary men and women.

    Having heard the arguments as to the law and facts (there weren’t many facts) would they have found that the decision was unlawful?

    I would have said yes unlawful, but maybe I would have been in a minority. Jonathon Sumption has said law is just common sense with knobs on. In a way it was almost not a legal question (well it was but) because it asked in essence whether it was right that the PM should close down Parliament to drive through the referendum result in circumstances where Parliament is blocking it. It didn’t help that the Government gave an implausible explanation for prorogation; no-one believed it and that alone undermines trust. But maybe it is worth asking 11 ordinary people if the means justify the end on a particular instance – not to change the law but to decide if the law is so and so then is this is breach.

    Maybe if the Government seek to use Henry VIII powers / orders in counsel to subvert an Act that should go to 11 ordinary people.

    That’s my tuppence worth for this weekend.

  • michael norton

    A good question would be why are the vast majority of British members of parliament so in hock to the European Union, what hold does it have on them. They mostly know at the forthcoming General Election the unhappy voters will de-select them.
    Could it be these Remainer M.P.s see their own financial futures in Europe evaporating with Brexit,
    could it be their own future fortunes are more important to them, than the well being of the U.K.?

    • Yr Hen Gof

      One might also usefully ask why so many M.P.s are in hock to Israel and what hold does it have on them?
      88% of Tory M.P.s and 64% of Labour M.P.s describe themselves as Friends of Israel.
      By their behaviour, many people would consider them to be more than friends.

  • N_

    Boris Johnson gave his pole-dancer friend Jennifer Arcuri places on British trade missions, including two to Tel Aviv. She now specialises in cyber security. Bwahaha!

    This stepson of the woman whose family owns Marks and Spencer

    * has lost every vote he’s held in the Commons,
    * stopped the Commons sitting and got away with it until the judges told him he couldn’t,
    * has tried twice for a general election and failed to get one
    * keeps saying he’s going to get a deal with EU27 but hasn’t negotiated sh*t with them
    * has appointed a swivel-headed eugenics nutcase to run the government who called his task a “walk in the park” and then denied it a few hours later, and
    * he’s going to be summonsed to appear in front of the London Assembly because he got caught paying a poledancer lots of public money including funding her business trips to Israel.

    It can’t be long before he starts calling all his critics “losers”.

    He’s (metaphorically) dead standing up. He should be put out of his (political) misery.

    • J Galt

      The more you bang on about him N_ the more I like the guy – at least he’s a larf which is more than can be said about you.

      So he bunged a few grand to some floozy – so what? if I was in his position I might do the same – depends on the floozy.

    • N_

      Latest news: Jennifer Arcuri was invited to meet Prince Andrew at Buckingham Palace.

      I like this bit:

      Ms Arcuri’s other firm Hacker House is also under the spotlight as an investigation was launched into how it got £100,000 from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport last year. Culture minister Matt Warman told the House of Commons on Wednesday the company was awarded the money because it was registered in Britain.

      Ah, so that explains it then. Free 100K for every company registered in Britain!

      Got to wonder where she learnt about cyber security. Did the pole have a computer science textbook on it, printed in Braille?

  • giyane

    ” the entire political elite on all sides are self-serving and venal. ”

    Venality, self-interest and deception are virtues in modern consumer society. These were Mrs Thatcher’s replacements for Christian Faith Hope and Charity . If Mrs Thatcher were a prophetess { God Forbid } sent down to warn us her people, in her Thatcherian Gospel she’d have said Queen Elizabeth II Version :
    ” But now Venality, Self-interest and Deception remain–these three. The greatest of these is Deception.”

    And so it is that 40 years after the profitess started her ministry in 1979 half the civilised world who were previously Christian , trusting in Faith Hope and Charity , are now Thatcherian, including Blowjob the prime minister and Arch-bishop Dominic Cummings, and leading bishopricks of the privy wardrobe like Jo Swinson Ruth Davidson and Nicola Sturgeon.

    If there’s one thing that marks out the Thatcherian age against the Christian, it’s the staunch adherence to traditional values like Lying to the public, false flag terrorism and fake currency without which our society would be so much weaker, and our place in the world would be mere punching shadows and muttering expletives to ourselves like crazies. “take that , you two-timing , sanctions busting Iranian devil,” or ” Pick on someone your own size you houthi drone threatening the world economy.” ” No backstop ”

    And then obviously the world would pity us and regret our downward fall in the world.
    And people would pass us in the street crossing the road with a kind of nervousness that somehow we might be able to take their money contactless from their wallet of bankrupt creditcards.

    • Brianfujisan

      giyane

      You in the south are still seriously missing the mood in Scotland..

      ” are now Thatcherian, including Blowjob the prime minister and Arch-bishop Dominic Cummings, and leading bishopricks of the privy wardrobe like Jo Swinson Ruth Davidson and Nicola Sturgeon.”

      To put Nicola’s name to that Vile lot ..WOW.

  • CasualObserver

    I’d imagine that any journo at the BBC who wanted to probe the Biden affair and its implications regarding the Impeachment of the POTUS, in any way that failed to start from a position of Orange Man Bad, would have been sidelined by the bright young things who see their mission as influencing opinion rather than reporting facts ? Indeed its highly probable that any such reporters were pensioned off years ago. The Beeb seem to rely on Zurcher their US stringer, who by his past efforts is likely to be heavily biased against Trump ?

    There also exists the possibility that the Democrats have effectively conceded defeat in 2020, and want to run a losing race with Warren as candidate. Their attempts at impeachment will handily get rid of Biden as a front runner for selection to fight 2020, and hopefully buoy up their vote somewhat amongst their urban faithful.

    As regards Johnson, its rather bizzare that no MP’s have worked out that he thrives on being attacked, and that a far surer means of landing punches is by means of ridicule. Such is the lack of nous in our MP’s these days 🙂

  • daz nez

    oh God, another left-wing anti-democratic globalist, unable to see the wood for the trees and how hateful and vile their own side is being – also denying the people a general election so they can thwart the referendum result they have never ever accepted with anything approaching grace (more like screeching and opprobrium.)

    one wonders how there can even be any remainers left now – surely the advantages of being in any club must come into serious question when it appears impossible to actually leave it. but the penny won’t drop until we have actually left, and no great disaster befalls us (aside from the ones created to punish us of course.)

    • giyane

      Daz nez

      It’s not very subtle to accuse Labour of stuppornness when Theresa May poisoned Brexit by declaring from her Crystal ball that Brexit meant racist Brexit.

      Jeremy Corbyn’s interpretation of the entrails was Brexit meant simply leaving the EU club which was becoming more federalist.

      Corbyn is not a remainder as proved last week
      If you want to complain about the remainders opposing the referendum, looking at the tea leaves not happy, swill it round not happy, swill it round again not happy, fair criticism.

      The person who started ALL the problems was PM May in the way she interpreted Brexit.
      Maybe she didn’t see the Made In China label.

    • giyane

      .plenty of racist trolls complsing about Craig.
      It’s taken a millennium of Christianity to get European civilisation to unite, now it’s United they’ve lost their scapegoat to insult and project all their own human nastiness onto.

      There are certain political advantages to coming out of the federal EU bloc. But the logic of hate is the logic of war. Are you all bored with not being allowed to die in mud filled trenche?
      I’m sure someone can build a theme park filled up to the eyeballs in blood , slime and offal .Try Weston super Mare one weekend.

      Brace yourselves for the thrill of knowing that if you drown in Brown sludge your children will starve and nobody will pay your mortgage.
      Anything is better than hating your fellow human beings because they are minutely different from the concept you have if your nasty selves.

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