Mainstream Media Pro-Johnson Propaganda Gets Into Full Swing 479


We are now under election broadcasting rules.

Ian Austin left the Labour Party nine months ago. He was then appointed by the Tories as Prime Ministerial Trade Envoy to Israel. As of yesterday, he is neither a MP nor a candidate for election. He is a minor politician who achieved only the most junior ministerial rank, PUSS, and for only seven months. He is best known for heckling Jeremy Corbyn while Jeremy Corbyn was delivering the official Labour response to the Chilcot Report on the illegal invasion of Iraq, shouting “Sit down and shut up” and “You stupid disgrace” at Corbyn for criticising the war.

STRANGELY THE BBC FORGOT TO MENTION THIS

We are now under election broadcasting rules. How and why was Ian Austin invited onto the BBC Radio 4 Today programme today? He left the Labour Party six months ago, and has been a huge critic of Corbyn. It is hardly a surprise that the Tory’s Trade Envoy to Israel advises people to vote Tory. So who initiated Ian Austin’s appearance on the BBC Today programme, and why? It is obvious that the BBC knew he was going to urge people to vote Tory – or why invite a non-MP and non-candidate, to say exactly the same things he has been saying since Corbyn became leader?

That the Today programme at the BBC is produced by a Tory, under a Tory BBC Head of News, and hosted by a Tory is established fact and beyond dispute. The facts we need to know are these. Did Austin first contact the BBC or did the BBC first contact Austin? Who took the editorial decision to include this item in the programme? Was any organisation involved at any stage in any of the discussions, or did Austin at all times represent himself purely as an individual?

Following Austin’s vitriolic attack on Corbyn as a racist and anti-semite on BBC Today, he was given eleven full minutes unanswered on BBC Breakfast from 8.56 to 9.07. The presenter stated that they had no official response from the Labour Party.

Yet we are in an election, and under election broadcast rules. The BBC must have known what Austin was going to say – otherwise why invite him on? Why was not another guest invited at the same time Austin was invited, to give balance?

Austin’s appointment as Trade Envoy to Israel is not a Civil Service appointment, it is a political appointment. He is a Tory appointee urging people to vote Tory. Under election broadcasting rules, the massive broadcasting time he is being given must count as Tory time, and be balanced out by broadcast time given to the Labour, SNP, Brexit, Lib Dem and Green parties. I strongly suspect that the BBC is intending to avoid this and claim Austin is Independent so the barrage of “Vote for Boris Johnson” time he is being given does not, they will claim, count as Tory time.

That the state broadcaster connives actively to launch a fierce character assassination of the opposition leader as a racist, and urge everyone to vote for the Government, is a disgrace. That they have not mentioned he is Tory Trade Envoy to Israel is a disgrace. This is not how media behaves in a real democracy. It shows the ferocity with which the UK Establishment will resist the current real threats to its continuing hegemony.

This is very dirty. It is going to get worse.

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479 thoughts on “Mainstream Media Pro-Johnson Propaganda Gets Into Full Swing

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  • N_

    The way the Tory party and its media are talking about how Jeremy Corbyn “was present at a wreath-laying ceremony” at graveyard where anti-fascist martyrs from the Black September organisation are buried who gave their lives fighting against the fascist Israeli machine (and also of course, against Arab interests that fought against the Palestinian dispossessed – just look at the name “Black September”)!! This, apparently, is “honouring those who kill Jews”. Emotive language, huh?

    Well every time a person proclaims their acceptance of the legitimacy of the existence of Israel, for example Tony Blair lighting a candle who marked the 50th anniversary of the proclamation of that fascist entity, what are they doing other than honouring those who kill Arabs? (And in Tory Blair’s case, what is he himself other than a man who kills Arabs?)

    And listen, about the Munich Olympics which were held 5 years after the Six Day War there is a very important point. The said fascist entity called Israel had a team there for propaganda reasons. Think of it rather like Julius Streicher. Streicher wasn’t a member of the SS, involved in running concentration or extermination camps, or in the military. Streicher was a newspaper editor, a propagandist. He was a propagandist who served a genocidal effort. That was the view of the prosecution and judges at Nuremburg. That’s how Streicher came to be convicted of crimes against humanity.

    Then seven years after the Munich Olympics, Israel won the Eurovision song contest with the ever-so peaceful song “Hallelujah”. Ever so peaceful, spreading the message that Israel is all about peace. Too bad if you were stuck in a refugee camp with many hundreds of thousands of others at that time, several members of your family killed, chased out of your home and home region by an army of fanatical extreme-racist thugs, including many wielding their religion as nothing but a tool to intensify their murderous racial hatred. Imagine then hearing that Israel is all about peace … or peaceful non-violent sporting competitions in the “community of nations”.

    • Hmmm

      Let’s not forget the terrorists who killed British soldiers whilst fighting for the creation of Israel…or is it anti semitism to mention them…

  • N_

    I wonder how the Tory “economic experts at think tanks” who will “independently analyse” the parties’ manifestos when they come out will deal with the fact that both major parties are promising large increases in public spending at a time when Moody’s has just cut Britain’s credit rating to “negative”.

    • different frank

      Corbyn did indeed attend a wreath-lying ceremony in 2014 where victims of the 1985 Israeli airstrike against the headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organisation in Tunis were remembered – an attack that had been condemned at the time by the UN and by Margaret Thatcher. The attack killed around 50 people, mostly Palestinians, and injured many more.

      While wreaths may also have been laid at other graves, Corbyn did not participate in these ceremonies. Nor are any of the graves those of Munich perpetrators, who are mostly buried in Libya. None is buried in Tunis.

      • N_

        Thanks for this. Well, except for the word “perpetrators” which sounds negative. Is it not the case that Atef Bseiso was unconnected with the heroic Munich operation but Salah Khalaf did play a recruitment role? Which is not to say that Corbyn attended any ceremony for either of these martyrs. He didn’t.

        Jeremy Corbyn has been prominent in the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and this is very much to his credit. He has promised that if Labour is elected Britain will recognise the State of Palestine. Comparison: when Theresa May became leader of the Tory party she went to dine with the Chief Rabbi before she saw the monarch to be appointed prime minister (source: Jewish Chronicle); and Boris Johnson’s stepmother’s family runs Marks and Spencer.

        What would happen at the time of another Gaza massacre? Corbyn would probably kick out Israeli diplomats, as Venezuela and Bolivia did on a previous occasion. Britain would have an “ethical foreign policy” on something for once! Corbyn would not stand alongside lickspittle western leaders who jump for joy exclaiming “Israel has the right to defend itself” whenever the Israelis blow Arab children apart in Gaza.

        • Alex Westlake

          What you appear to be saying is that the athletes murdered at the Munich Olympics were a legitimate target because they were Israeli, and you’re criticising Theresa May for meeting with the Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom, and Boris Johnson for having a Jewish stepmother. Thank you demonstrating that “anti Zionists” are basically antisemites.

  • philipat

    So the BBC is Tory? I find that very difficult to believe. The BBC has been consistently anti-Brexit, anti-Trump and anti-anything which doesn’t conform to the ‘progressive” globalist agenda. If for once they, belatedly, introduce a little balance, perhaps that is overdue?

    • Dave

      As metaphors, the Anglo-Zionist Alliance between the House of Windsor and House of Rothschild based on power and privileges of the City of London and Aristocracy aka the Deep State aka 1% defend their position by attacking the Right as Racist and the Left as anti-Semitic, hence why both Trump and Corbyn are equally reviled by the MSM and ironically shows these political opposites are de facto populist allies against Globalism.

    • Herbie

      You’re right.

      It’s a laziness to call the BBC, right or left.

      They are, as you say, supporters of the ‘progressive” globalist agenda, and will support anyone and any thing from any party or no party who support more and greater financialisation of human life, to the detriment of humanity itself. They’ll even make things up to that agenda.

      We need a whole new management of the BBC, before they completely destroy all that is good in life.

      A complete sacking of the whole shower,

      We can do it bit by bit, the way Thatcher did it in the late 80s. You know, like pretending the change isn’t happening.

      I mean, there’s peeps on utube, with little funds, doing far far better analysis of events than even the best of BBC output.

      It’s very very poor product.

      Who’d pay for it, had they a choice.

      No one.

      You have to be forced under pain of legal sanction to support the ridiculous thing.

      • Ken Kenn

        No .

        The BBC is Cameronite.

        Socially Libetarian but economically Neo liberal.

        Johnson would claimr to be a Libertarian Centre right politician.

        His writings re: Muslim women is in that vein.

        That is: they have the right to wear the Hijab and Burqua but I ( as a Libertarian reserve the right to take the piss out of it ).

        It’s called ‘ Freedom of speech ‘ but typical of the right they don’t like this freedom if it is critical of Israels’ assassinations of Palestinians.

        Bannon cried in his Miller Lite when criticised by LBC.

        The vain people can’t stand criticism.

        I tried listening ( genuinely ) to a Jordan Peterson video and all I could think about was the song Walk Tall and Look the world Right in the eye.

        Not terrible sentiments but cliche nl

        In actuality Peterson bores me whereas I have always had a soft spot for the Eyore of politics Peter Hitchens – I can’t stand his brother but Peter I like.

        I just think he’s more honest.

        Johnson is dishonest because he wants to be liked.

        That is a terrible flaw for my money.

        Say what you think like Bill Cash.

        Fool people like Swinson – she is deluded and a downright liar like Johnson.

        • Herbie

          “No .

          The BBC is Cameronite.

          Socially Libetarian but economically Neo liberal.”

          Yes, but that is what Internationalism is today.

          “Johnson would claimr to be a Libertarian Centre right politician.”

          He’s critical of the social elements of Internationalism, but then so was Trump.

          “I tried listening ( genuinely ) to a Jordan Peterson video and all I could think about was the song Walk Tall and Look the world Right in the eye.

          Not terrible sentiments but cliche nl”

          Peterson has plenty of critics on utube and his run is really at an end. There are many bright people on utube and to succeed your arguments have to cohere. Peterson’s did not.

          Anyway, the really important people are not the best known.

          “In actuality Peterson bores me whereas I have always had a soft spot for the Eyore of politics Peter Hitchens – I can’t stand his brother but Peter I like.

          I just think he’s more honest.”

          Yes, he’s one of the few one nation Conservatives left and much too intelligent for the times we’re living through.

          Having said that, his voice isn’t big enough to make a difference, easily tolerated, and gives an impression of diverse opinion on mainstream media.

    • Hmmm

      Anti Corbyn rather than pro Bozo. BBC will plump for the latter though. Old school tie, what what

    • Tom Welsh

      You can only worry about the BBC having a “Tory” bias if you mistakenly believe that the “Conservative Party” is conservative.

      It isn’t. In fact all the three largest parties have essentially the same mindset – I wouldn’t dignify it with the name of philosophy – which one might call opportunistic materialist pragmatism. Very roughly, this boils down to “what’s in it for me?”

    • N_

      BBC presenters on Radio 4 practically spit the acronym “EU” every time they say it. At least to my ears.

      But I would love to see someone make a case for there being an “establishment” “plot” to Remain, and even more so if they map out some scenarios for how that would be achieved. Because whichever we look at it, a general election campaign is ongoing and surely a Tory majority wouldn’t be on these “establishment plotters'” agenda. Yet…look at the right wing private-sector media – they are ramping up the Tories like nobody’s business, even more ferociously than they usually do. (One could even think they were scared.) So what have we got? Is it ideology versus bureaucracy, as in China in 1966? Is the aim a hung parliament that passes a bill for another referendum? A shortlived Labour government even? What actually happens? How might it play out? Over to you, Philipat!

  • SA

    The comments made by Scottish nationalist politicians and bloggers here seem to indicate that they will effectively be hugely influential in the UK having a tory government. There is no question about it. If this was someone who is subverting Corbyn for the cause of a foreign country, they would be screaming foul before but now they seem to be using the same tactics as anyone else. Shame.

    • Hatuey

      SA, I think you have your wires crossed. Scotland hasn’t voted Tory in significant numbers for about 100 years. England has been systematically voting the most vile right-wing bastards for decades.

      • SA

        The SNP are learning fast the art of extortion and blackmail from the DUP. Here is what the BBC reported
        “Nicola Sturgeon has told Jeremy Corbyn not to “bother picking up the phone” to ask the SNP to put him in government unless he backs an independence vote.
        The Scottish first minister said she was in favour of removing Boris Johnson from office and holding an election.
        But she said her backing for a future “progressive alliance” government relied on a deal to hold a referendum.
        Ms Sturgeon also said she would seek UK government consent this year to hold a new independence vote.”
        The self contradictory statement would like to get rid of Boris Johnson as a priority but not if Corbyn does not yield to the blackmail of agreeing a referendum.

        • Mrs Pau!

          Ah the art of the political shakedown. These days it seems it is everywhere, and shameless.

        • giyane.

          S.A.

          Millions of British voters will not vote Labour if they think it will break up the UK. Nicola Surgeon is assuming that Corbyn is brain dead, the same mistake No Swindon made. At 65 I can understand how what I like about Jeremy Corbyn , his intellect honesty, patience and integrity , might be be detested by young , female political ninjas.

          Question is, do Labour voters think like them, or like me? God knows.

      • SA

        And Hatuey earlier confirmed that he thinks Labour is anti-Semitic because that suits the SNP to denigrate Labour.

        • Wikikettle

          I think everyone is “Anti- Semitic”, as now we are told it means ” Anti- Squatters”

          • Tom Welsh

            “Treason doth never prosper: what’s the reason?
            Why, if it prosper, none dare call it treason”.

            – Sir John Harrington (1561-1612) (Epigrams, Book iv. Ep. 5).

            The same applies to cynical murderous robbery in the case of Israel.

          • giyane.

            Zionists believe that the great period of their history was just before Jesus pbuh.
            Business across their tract of land was booming between East and west with a new Temple recently built where Al Aqsa is now and new Mediterranean harbours.

            Global trade spans the civilisations and spurns the spiritual. Tories rah rahing about the excellent shape of the British economy while driving the disabled to suicide is exactly the same mentality as the pre- christian zionists.

            And yet Jesus pbuh prophecies that not one stone would stand upon another of that mercantile totem. Instead the people were starved at Masada and fled the homeland.

            The BBC is complacency personified. Defeat by Russia in Syria. Total collapse of Thatcherite policy in 2007. Total inaffordability of housing..
            The unviability of the young.
            Climate change total denial.

            The only solution to these massive problems is the promotion of an Oaf, blonde buffoon, a venal liar and an unrepentant philanderer.

            We are supposed to conclude that if this oaf is the answer maybe these problems don’t exist.
            We are lambs to the gas chambers. Every single one of us is mortgaged to these bastards to the tune of hundreds of thousands of pounds. We are owned.

          • Herbie

            Wow. Excellent geopolitical stuff in that short piece.

            Had you mentioned the BRI it would have been 11/10

        • Hatuey

          It isn’t even dissonance. It’s pure junk. The chances of the SNP being in a position to make such a deal with Corbyn are over 40,000 to 1, according to my calculations (bearing in mind that Boris would get first dibs if it’s a hung Parliament).

          The SNP are playing tricks with their own supporters by pretending this is a possibility, thus “if only we’d all vote SNP and give Scotland as many voices in WM as possible…”

          The problem is we did that and having 54 SNP MPs in Westminster counted for nothing. I’d actually prefer that they boycotted the paedo-crack den like Sinn Fein but that would require people started seeing things for what they are, which takes some balls.

          • SA

            The dissonance in this case is as follows:
            Foreign state 1 not liked by many here tries to influence British elections by getting its friends to denounce labour for being racist of the worst kind (because as you know there are some racists that are worse than others, depending as to whom your racism is directed against).
            Aspiring foreign state 2 and its followers like to denigrate Labour and use same tactic plus more in order to achieve aim of independence through the backdoor.
            Get my drift?

        • Hatuey

          “Hatuey earlier confirmed that he thinks Labour is anti-Semitic because that suits the SNP to denigrate Labour.”

          I didn’t but I don’t mind you lying.

          • SA

            Hatuey
            November 7, 2019 at 19:40
            I have zero sympathy for the Labour Party and its supporters. The independence movement in Scotland has been subjected to BBC disinformation of this type for about 6 years. Not only has the Labour Party and its supporters done nothing to help, they’ve actively encouraged the attacks and often taken part.
            Just last week in the Commons Labour effectively voted against giving the “regions” (Scotland, Wales, and NI) any role or say in the Brexit negotiations.
            So, I’m sorry but to hell with Labour — there is no place for anti-semitism in British politics. And if you think I’m stooping to low levels with that, maybe now you’ll realise how Scottish people feel when they are being called scroungers (often by Labour supporters), etc., and the BBC directs its propaganda at us.

          • Hatuey

            Okay, thanks for posting and confirming that I didn’t say that. As everyone can see, I did t mention the SNP.

            And now you should retract and apologise.

          • SA

            Hatuey
            I am really very ready to apologise if I hurt your feelings, but apologise for what exactly? I quoted what you said, which is quite clearly stated in your post, that Labour is anti-Semitic did you not? I did say that that is because it suited the SNP but that is based on your clearly being pro independence in all your posts which indicates your support of the SNP, That I have to admit is an assumption on my side but it is not a wild one. If that is your bone of contention I apologise profusely and sincerely.

          • Hatuey

            “based on your clearly being pro independence in all your posts which indicates your support of the SNP”

            I’ve never praised or said anything to support the SNP on here. In actual fact, I’d say about 30% of my comments are extremely critical of the SNP.

            As for Labour and anti-semitism, John McDonnell insists that it isn’t just a smear campaign, that it’s real, serious, very nasty, and he’s seen the evidence, and that labour needs to face up to it.

            I posted the video link where you can see him say exactly that.

          • giyane.

            Hatuey

            John MacDonnell believes in antisemitism because simple psychology tells you that someone is on your case and pissing you off, just give them what they want and they will go away.

            Just keep saying yes to the shrinks until they let you out.
            If you can, give the nuggets the mobile numbrrbof the man who blew up the twin towers. Arseholes get paid on results. Give em some tripe to justify their wages.

      • N_

        Scotland hasn’t voted Tory in significant numbers for about 100 years.
        Wrong. The Conservatives won 50.1% of the vote in Scotland in the 1951 British general election. There’s a lot of conservatism in Scotland, just as there is in many countries.

        Is there anything that isn’t Scotland versus England for you?

          • N_

            Survey shows Scottish racism

            The most recent Scottish Social Attitudes survey reveals that more than half would be concerned if a family member married a Muslim. The survey of 1,500 Scots also found that one in three felt that Muslims living in Scotland were depriving Scots of jobs, homes and healthcare provision. Some 55% said that Muslims had ‘not done a great deal to condemn terrorism’.

            The survey also found that Pakistanis and English people living in Scotland felt ‘urrounded by nationalist distrust’.

            Attitudes to racism in Scotland ‘rolling backwards,’ experts warn

            Racism in schools: Get back to Africa’ among racist abuse revealed by Scots pupils

            Survey finds a third of black and ethnic minority Scots experience discrimination

            Scotland’s tolerance reputation ‘a myth’

            The authors of No Problem Here: Understanding Racism in Scotland claim black and minority ethnic (BAME) applicants for large public sector organisations had a 1.1% chance of being appointed, compared to 8.1% for their white counterparts.

            One eighth as likely!!

            And they said Scotland had a higher rate of murders that were known or suspected to have a racist element than the rest of the UK, at 1.8 murders per million people compared to 1.3 between 2000 and the 2013.

            Clearly those racially prejudiced propagandists from the “fascist nation” of England must have been putting in a lot of work smearing the super-tolerant foreigner-welcomers north of the border!

            Glasgow toy shop under fire for selling ‘racist’ golliwog dolls

            Golliwog dolls on display in the front window of a shop in Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow

            When was the last time any shop in London sold a golliwog doll?

            I was racially abused – then my school tried to suspend me

            A 17-year-old pupil in Edinburgh says she was called the “N” word and told to hang herself by fellow students.

            She said: ‘They called me the N word and said things against my skin. It was really bad. I was shocked. They all launched at me. After that the teachers got involved. A teacher took me home. The next day they said I would be suspended.’

            Britney says the reason the school gave for her suspension was that she was new to the school. It was only when her mother, Blessing, showed teachers a video of the incident which had been shared on social media that the suspension was removed.

            But let’s not listen to real Pakistani, English and black people living in Scotland…

          • Hatuey

            Sorry to confound your small mind once again, N, but if it was your intention here to give a damning account of racism in Scotland, you might have mentioned anti-Irish Catholic racism which many would agree remains the most serious race issue in Scotland today.

            I’m guessing you didn’t because the perpetrators in that category are very much of the typical English/British Union Jack waving variety and you want to attack and smear Scottish people, not British people.

            It’s a stupid goal, though. I myself have never argued that Scottish people are in any way exceptional when it comes to social problems like that. If anyone else on here suggested we were, I’d most like take issue with them. I’m pretty sure I’ve done that on here actually.

            Another common argument is that Scottish people are more caring and sharing, as evinced by their tendency to vote for left leaning parties rather than vile Tories. Whilst it’s true that Scottish people are different from English people in this regard, I’ve never believed that it was down to our angelic or socialistic qualities. I think it’s more down to the poverty imposed on us by England in this God forsaken Union — poor people tend to lean to the left.

            One of the reasons I want independence — from people like you — is so that we can address all of those problems and become a more prosperous and civilised country. Far from denying or hiding from those issues, they are central to my political outlook and I am happy to discuss them.

          • giyane.

            N_

            Yes , in Glasgow teachers pick on the victim’s of racism and suspend them from school for reacting adversely to racism

            The same thing happens in Birmingham. We are a selfish intolerant race, whether we live in England ScotlandFrance Germany Turkey or anywhere else.

        • Wikikettle

          N_. I wouldn’t want Scotland to leave the union. I do wonder who constructed the questions in the survey you mention. Would they have dared to ask the same question about Muslims including Black or Jewish people. Years of Islamophobia has done its job.

    • glenn_uk

      Perhaps that’s what the Scottish nationalists are all about. Enable a really bad, way far-right Tory government in, and let the Brexit damage commence. That should make enough Scots ticked off, so rally support for another great push for independence. Labour under Corbyn might be a bit too comfortable for the Scots to get all riled up, and they don’t want that.

      So push on with every slur, pretend Labour hates Jews, pretend Labour don’t hold Labour values enough, whatever.

  • Goose

    More absolute bollocks from the guardian today; accusing an MP of antisemitism based on the recollection of a journalist on a coach trip. The MPs behaviour was so appalling it took BuzzFeed all of 20 months to bring it to anyone’s attention.

    Also, columnist Jonathan Freedland, what a disgrace. He’s raising the spectre of 1930s Germany and the rise of Hitler and drawing comparisons to the UK and the Labour party. This isn’t just offensive to Corbyn- an anti-fascist to his core. It’s offensive to the UK people to claim ‘it could happen here’. The UK played a big role in liberating Europe, and saved the Jews from extinction, at huge cost in terms of UK lives, and Freedland thinks it fine to insinuate the UK is capable of allowing a holocaust here? He’s despicable. I don’t even think he believes the shit he writes.

    Sorry for the rant y’all.

    • Willie

      Don’t think it’s a rant. England is a belligerent facist nation on the slide.

      It’s superiority is an inbuilt belief and it will only be a matter of time till it comes to some form of conflict. You cannot deal with a bully convinced of its greatness when it’s on the way down.

      The hostile state is headed for trouble and Moodys have just marked the U.K. down to Aa2 which will only antagonise superior state as it’s power declines against the European AAA’s such as Germany, Netherlands, Finland, Norway and ex colonies like Singapore.

      A sour stinking nation with an impoverished underbelly singing Rule Britannia.

      • Goose

        The level of press hysteria around Labour helped them last time, because it was so OTT. The right-wing press can go only so far with the vitriol before even for their own readers call it BS.

        The BBC is the most amusing; a publicly funded organisation that wouldn’t last two minutes in a competitive environment against streaming services, an organisation that Labour for some misguided reason defends. Like the anti-Labour intel people and the army. All they risk from a Labour govt is improved living conditions and support (army) and a pay rise.

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Willie, Whilst you have portrayed yourself extremely accurately, in your view of us English (one of the most multi-cultural, densely populated and tolerant countries in the world – with one of the lowest crime rates), your quoting of Moodys (assuming you are Scottish) does nothing to enhance your argument.

        If you are an American, then fine. “Moody’s, is an American business and financial services company. It is the holding company for Moody’s Investors Service (MIS), an American credit rating agency, and Moody’s Analytics (MA), an American provider of financial analysis software and services.”

        This is what Moodys stated about Scotland’s quest for Independence

        ” Scotland could see its credit status downgraded to ‘junk’ if it votes to leave the UK, according to Moody’s, as a result of the pressures falling oil prices have placed on its public finances.

        Last week, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon called for a second independence referendum to take place before Britain leaves the European Union, saying the country must be offered a choice between a ‘hard’ Brexit and becoming an independent country.”

        Tony

      • Kempe

        The UK’s status was downgraded to Aa2in 2017, Moody’s are warning that Brexit and the associated uncertainty could see it go down further. Hardly rocket science.

        Aa2 is the third highest rating but the loss of AAA hasn’t led to borrowing being much more expensive.

      • Tom Welsh

        Yes. It took me several decades to realize that everything I was told at school – about how colonialism was so 19th century and had been given up by 1945 – was false.

        In the 1960s and 1970s all the great and the good piled on to the South African “apartheid” regime; but to this day the selfsame people loyally support Israel, whose apartheid practices are substantially worse.

        By 1960 the British government had given up the Empire and even given India and Pakistan their independence. Yet today they are trying to dictate to and bully countries like China, Russia, Iran and venezuela (among dozens of others).

      • N_

        A whole nation is fascist (at the same time as being “stinking”) and yet it doesn’t have a “national party” that gets even 1% of the vote! What an unusual state of affairs. Are you sure you’re not a prejudiced bigot?

    • George McI

      The Labour/anti-Semitism “crisis” is the most pathetic fake news story of all time. It seems to me to be a trap even to respond to this gassy nothing. Corbyn has joined what Gore Vidal referred to as the “Hitler of the month” club. The cockroach Blairites and Tories – themselves just fellators of corporate bosses – are desperately pushing the biggest Pavlovian button of them all. Why? Because economically and politically they have no arguments that will stand up. Thus they are putting on the scary masks and shouting “BOO!”

      • Republicofscotland

        There’s a room somwhere jam-packed with Hasbara online snoopers combing every single political parties candidates comments back to the beginning of time. Any less than perfect woke comment on any social platform is quickly passed onto the media, where a character assassinate report is opened.

      • N_

        I shudder to think what coup of at least 1924 Zinoviev letter magnitude may explode during the last week of the election campaign. What might Tory campaign chief Isaac Levido have in store for us?

        If the one-on-one debate between Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson goes ahead, Corbyn is going to wipe the floor with sneering blustering cokehead Johnson. On the issue of racism, Johnson, a filthy racist who calls black people “piccaninnies”, will be annihilated by Corbyn, a man who has stood against racism all his life. Nor is there any way the Tories or their bosom buddies in the Brexit Party will win the hearts and minds of many of the youth, of many people under 30. Same goes for the Tories’ other chums in the LibDems and the Greens. Labour may even be ahead in the polls as we go into the final week. See first paragraph.

    • Hatuey

      Goose, rants are fine but I’m not offended by it. Neither is John McDonnell who insists it isn’t simply a smear, it’s real problem, he says, he’s seen the evidence apparently, and wants to tackle it head on and face up to it.

  • Dungroanin

    Huzzah! Here’s a Lawyer for our times.

    Sidney Powell.

    I bet SHE doesn’t pronounce it as ‘Poll’…

    https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2019/11/understanding-what-sidney-powell-is-doing-to-kill-the-case-against-michael-flynn-by-larry-c-johnson.html

    There really was ‘no there,there’.

    The conspiracy revealed and who was in the room the day before Flynn was interviewed and false records presented. BANG.

    They are toast.

    The next link up the chain won’t be far behind.

    Just as with the Epstein case and Miami Heralds lawyers role, I once again think the US system has more ‘leverage’. Maybe JA may get a fairer trial and representation there?

    • Robyn

      Agree, Dungroanin, Sidney Powell certainly knows what’s what and so would everyone else if the MSM reported it (which they won’t). I, too, think the next link up the chain isn’t far behind and I suspect the link will be to the Skripal story. Fingers crossed.

  • Tarla

    The big Goebbels lies about ‘Labour and anti semitism, ‘Corbyn and anti semitism’, ‘Corbyn is an anti Semite’ etc., etc is going to continue to come thick and fast. Courtesy of Johnson’s advisers, they have nothing to offer so can only resort to dirty Goebbels tricks. They’ll get more and more more desperate and as the Dan Garden lies show they’ll make things up as they see fit. It’s the latter days Tories Zinoviev letter and it will continue to be headlines because the Tories have willing accomplices in the MAN and anti Corbyn hater wannabees.

    This attack is an attempt to drain the Labour party so they’ll say, ‘we’ll only stand a chance if Corbyn steps aside’ which has already been spouted by the Blairites crowd that hangs around with the likes of Jess Phillips.

    The Labour party needs to go on the attack and report anyone who is peddling the anti-Semitic lies to Ofcom. The Labour party should not just rely on an apology because it’s not meant. They should demand to know why they are prepared to attack Labour people without doing any research. They need to drag their names through mud. There will be plenty of dirt to dig on those anti Corbyn haters.

    • SA

      Tarla
      I agree with you, The Labour party stance has been to continue to apologise instead of defending and attacking.

      • michael norton

        There is almost no reason for the Labour Party to apologise, they need to get up on their hind legs and start spouting.

        • Republicofscotland

          “they need to get up on their hind legs and start spouting.”

          It will never happen, Corbyn is not one for using the political tool of debasing opponents or the bias media, which is commendable, but foolish.

          Politics is a dirty game and mud sticks.

      • glenn_uk

        Agreed fully. That tacit admission, by expelling people who had the audacity to criticise the government of a murderous apartheid state, was a mistake.

        The answer should always have been to point out that the Tories, Alt-Right, BNP, English Defence League and most of the ‘Kippers are where you’ll find the racists, with their rabidly xenophobic mates in the popular press, so they should stop trying to throw the scent and be serious for a moment. There are overwhelmingly more examples of racism on the right and among nationalists than you’ll ever find among socialists.

        • Loony

          It is interesting to learn that the UK is full of racists. All that is lacking is actual evidence of this racism. According to The Guardian some 33% of British schoolchildren are black or other ethnic minority. With figures like these then surely you would expect a truly racist society to be literally on fire. The absence of such fires acts as a demonstrable counterweight to your evidence free claims.

          • Iain Stewart

            There are overwhelmingly more examples of racism on the right and among nationalists than you’ll ever find among socialists.
            That would seem to be what Loony made his straw man from. Saying ‘than you’ll ever find’ was unfortunate, as it suggests greater skill in dissimulation. So his skewed interpretation of your phrase might be ‘that the left is racist, but apparently much less than the right’ (assuming that by ‘nationalists’ you were excluding nationalists of emancipation like the SNP).

          • glenn_uk

            Very possibly, Iain. I definitely was not referring to dissimulation! In fact, I only used the phrase on the off-chance that some socialist was actually a bit racist. Never known one personally, but I don’t rule out the possibility.

            Loony was being disingenuous as usual, anyway, and willfully misinterpreting. I would have some sympathy because he hasn’t got much material to work with, if he was not in such fawning adulation of that out-and-out racist and all round bigot Trump. Trump’s fans – Alt-Right/ “Proud Boys”/ White Supremacists, Clansmen and sundry Nazis – are in no doubt at all of this racism, which is why this rancid selection of the worst white people (*) in the world form Trump’s “base”.


            * Before Loony gets too excited again, I put “white people” in that sentence for clarity. It fully applies if the word “white” was omitted. Venn Diagram components of the worst people in the world and the worst white people in the world has a huge overlap.

          • Loony

            Glenn The question is not who said that the UK is full of racists, but who insinuated that the UK is full of racists. The answer to that question is you. Indeed both you and your erstwhile defender acknowledges your insinuation.

            Insinuation and smears are not admirable characteristics. I have little doubt that you object to the barrage of smearing and insinuation that has been directed at such public figures as Julian Assange and Jeremy Corbyn. When you deploy the exact same tactics against your ideological enemies (in this instance the vast bulk of the British population) then you can hardly complain when those same tactics are ruthlessly deployed against people you claim sympathy for.

            On a related issue how do you think that, in end, a manifest contempt for an entire population is likely to work out? Do you think that ultimately it will heal divisions and foster peace, love and mutual respect or do you think that it likely to contribute to burning the whole place down?

          • Iain Stewart

            “Looks like rain, Loony.”
            “So you think government spending on meteorology is a complete waste of money, since we can rely on your unscientific intuition instead!”
            “Maybe you should calm down, Loony.”
            “I see, the entire medical profession should be sacked, since you are here to give an instant psychiatric diagnosis!”
            “It’s just you look very pale, Loony.”
            “Racist!”

          • George McI

            “It is interesting to learn that the UK is full of racists. All that is lacking is actual evidence of this racism.”

            So “it is interesting to learn” something for which there is no “actual evidence”?

    • glenn_uk

      Having nothing specific with which they could slander Corbyn, a BBC Radio-4 programme tried another tactic this morning, while speculating about the election, to keep that old anti-Semitic bandwagon rolling.

      Contributors tut-tutted about how Labour were suffering badly from the anti-Semitism concerns that people “on the doorstep” were voicing. Quite whose doorsteps, and voiced to whom exactly about what, they didn’t actually say.

      It was simply left hanging – the clear implication that there _is_ concern and mistrust because Corbyn is a known hater of Jews, as are many people in his party. A party, it is worth repeating, hates Jews so much it elected one for its leader between 2010-2015. The decision finally came down to one particular Jew – Ed Miliband – over his brother.

      • Hatuey

        Regrettably you don’t say why you think it is unlikely that people on the doorsteps are concerned about Labour’s anti-semitism problem. Do you really expect the BBC to name names and provide addresses?

        It would be surprising if people were not concerned when one Labour Party politician after the other is on TV admitting there’s a problem and that it could have and should have been dealt with better.

        Here’s John McDonnell rebuking a caller on LBC who alleges that the anti-semitism problem is simply a smear campaign; https://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/iain-dale/john-mcdonnell-rebukes-labour-anti-semitism-smears/

        To paraphrase, “it isn’t a smear campaign, I’ve seen the evidence and the threats on social media… to our Jewish members… we have to face up to it…”

        • Richard Ian Crawford

          No, the antisemitism thing is absolute bullshit. Thoe claiming to be vicitms are either mischief making unreconstructed Blairites worrying about losing their safe, parachuted seat to a real socialist, or simply Tories. It is fascinating for me that as a life long supporter of the PSC, who has ahd a myriad Socialist Jewish mates, and with now a Muslim wife and a deepseated hatred of Hamas, I get called a zionist in the Middle East and an Antisemite in London.

          It would be funny were it not so obviously a ruse to go back to the good, old, Iraq-invading, military industrial deep state ass-licking days of Wee Tony Bliar.

          • Hatuey

            And now you need to explain John McDonnell insisting otherwise just a few days ago.

            This should be fun.

    • Loony

      Either you or I must be in fundamental error regarding the meaning of the word “balance”

      This guy does not want to leave the EU. This places him in exact alignment with the BBC, the Labour Party, effective government policy, the Liberal Party, the Green Party, the SNP, Plaid Cymru and Sinn Fein.

      Perhaps when you wrote the word “balance” you really intended to write “re-enforcement”

  • Peter

    For anyone seeking a little light relief you might find it here in the most surprising of places – a conversation between John Bercow and (yikes) Alistair Campbell.

    At 57:20 in the video below Bercow professes that he does not believe that Jeremy Corbyn is antisemitic and in his 22 years of knowing him he has never sensed a whiff of antisemitism from him.

    In the same video at 29:15 he does a very amusing, and I have to say not bad, impression of Tony Benn reciting the Socialist ABC.

    Enjoy. (Or not, depending on your views.)

    • Tom Welsh

      You mean to say you watched (and presumably listened to) an hour of conversation between Bercow and Campbell?

      What brand of anti-emetic do you use? I couldn’t stomach five seconds of that. I’d rather eat cow pats.

      • Peter

        No, I don’t mean to say any such thing.

        I’d already read somewhere above about the Corbyn quote, so I scrolled through to find it, spotting the Tony Benn piece (plus his five questions which were always good) along the way – glad I did.

        It’s useful to have the Bercow/Corbyn quote on your phone when dealing with those who have been sold the AS lie.

        Bercow was, of course, a Tory before becoming Speaker.

        • Herbie

          Great to have Bercow saying that.

          I think the main complaint against Corbyn was that he hadn’t managed the problem well, not that he himself was a-s.

          But I suppose the way all this stuff has been reported many will be unable to make the distinction.

        • Hatuey

          Nothing wrong with watching that and if I had more time I’d watch it myself. Better than gladiators or whatever you deem worthy, I’m sure.

          • Herbie

            “Better than gladiators or whatever you deem worthy, I’m sure.”

            Eh!

            You don’t want to watch Campbell for an hour and that means you’re a lowbrow.

            That’s ridiculous.

            Aren’t there other possibilities here.

  • Denton Scratch

    ‘This is very dirty. It is going to get worse.’

    Damned right. These are vicious, nasty times.

    I carry no flag for Corbyn. I know he’s no antisemite – I was his constituent for 30 years. He’s a decent man. I just don’t think he’s up to it. McDonnel, on the other hand, is very impressive, and I like his politics. He’s also loyal to a fault, and there’s no chance of him pushing Corbyn aside, unfortunately. And I’m not OK with the way the Labour NEC is carrying on.

    The libdems are going nowhere, so I think Boris has it. I will vote green, simply to increase their count – they won’t win in this constituency. My parents encouraged me to vote in elections, and I won’t abstain. I live in a Labour neighbourhood.

    But I’d rather be here than in the USA. If you want nasty, that is a truly nasty place.

    • Herbie

      Yeah, remarkable isn’t it.

      Post-war, they had the whole world in their hands, and most of its wealth.

      The highest standard of living for the masses the world has ever seen.

      Where did it all go.

      What happened.

      Can we, like, see the books?

      • michael norton

        What happened Herbie
        was globalisation, we moved away from making stuff, such as making steel, building ships, digging coal, making town gas,
        we now are just a giant supermarket,
        so we can consume the products from abroad.
        Hence the hoards of poor people unable to climb up and out of the debt they are shackled too.
        This is one of the reasons people voted Brexit in 2016.

        • portside

          Deindustrialization was a deliberate policy of the British Conservative party — and its ideological doppelganger New Labour. Both also championed neoliberal globalization and the financialization of the British economy. If you support the British Conservative party you support the permanent continuation of the neoliberal project you complain about.

          • Doghouse

            Brain over brawn cause horses to pull carriages rather than ride. In fairness such policies were – still are – ubiquitous across much of the developed world. They are generated by a greater wit than one mere political leader or another hence why they are party followed not party led.

          • portside

            Sure, all just a mysterious natural occurrence. Certainly not a deliberate ideological project, pioneered in the UK and US, on behalf of the richest.

          • Doghouse

            Yup, what I’m saying. Ultimately in this regard though, terms like UK and US have only marginally more value than Tory and Labour. Instruments in the orchestra, lot of players, one tune.

        • michael norton

          So,
          if you are only moderately intelligent, not university material but would have been factory material, what are you current choices in Global Britain, dock work, mostly gone, shop work, they are shutting shops, office work, they are shutting offices, mine work, almost all mines now closed, factory work, days are numbered, that might lead you to get a job on a market stall or on the dodgems or deck chairs at Margate but you will almost certainly never be able to buy a home.
          Although factory pay was usually modest, people in the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s + 80’s could still aspire to get a home with mortgage,
          this is now only possible if you have no children and a joint income of £80,000/annum,.

          • michael norton

            Bank jobs down the pan
            https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/nov/10/tsb-may-close-up-to-100-branches-and-put-400-jobs-at-risk
            TSB are considering closing up to 100 branches,
            according to a trade union source, in a move that could put 400 jobs at risk.
            The challenger bank has been working to repair its reputation following its IT meltdown last year but is looking for around £100m in cost savings, with its 544-strong branch network under scrutiny.
            Perhaps agriculture?
            This is now so mechanised, the only people needed are fruit and veg pickers, who mostly come from overseas on a temporary basis.
            Perhaps work for Mike Ashley with zero job security?
            There is very little future for the young, mostly due to exporting the work abroad.

            This lack of decent paid work should be first and foremost in the upcoming General Election.

          • Alyson

            TSB was sold to Sabadell, I think, which is a Spanish Bank, so in the light of Brexit it might be weighing up different political influences likely to affect its viability in the U.K. Migrating TSB computer processes to Sabadell was not as smooth as hoped. Banks have however been closing branches in small towns across the country, making it very difficult for shops and businesses to cash up at the end of the day, with nowhere to pay in their takings, and nowhere to obtain a float for the next day

      • Hatuey

        The US is still the richest and most powerful country in the world, by a long shot. You could get into a debate about per capita this and that, but in terms of GDP they are the biggest by miles.

        Interestingly, the mighty Russians whom we are all supposed to fear and fret over, have an economy that’s about the same size as South Korea’s.

        If you included offshore banking in calculations, the US would be even bigger relative to all other countries except Britain (Britain is the dominant player globally when it comes to offshore, with the US coming in second).

        As for the trend away from manufacturing, good evidence suggests Britain was moving in that direction in the mid 19th century. And the smart money had started moving out of India towards Africa (primarily) but elsewhere too well before Indian Independence.

        Access to cheap Chinese labour through the special economic zones — orchestrated by Nixon and pepsi cola 😉 — sucked in US manufacturers.

        There’s nothing sinister or conspiratorial about any of this; it’s all understandable in good old fashioned ‘supply and demand’ terms. It’s natural that businesses want to cut the costs of production just as you and I want to pay less for TVs and other junk. You could actually argue that consumers are the driving force behind all of this, or that they’re certainly one of the big driving forces.

        If it’s in any way at odds with classical economics, it’s in the way that capital has mobility where labour is more or less static. There was an assumption in classical economics that it would be the other way around. Nation states and racists have basically made it impossible for the markets to function as they should by blocking the free movement of labour.

        For what it’s worth, I think it’s worth considering the re-distributive effects of all this on living standards in places like India and China. I employ one or two Indians regularly and they can make in a few hours what the average in Indian would make in 3 months. I feel good about that, it isn’t exploitative — I’d pay the same rates to someone who did it in this country.

        It isn’t, then, a neo-liberal conspiracy. it isn’t Bilderberg or Skull & Bones, the masons, shape-shifting lizards, or anything that anyone should worry about. It’s just people trying to cut costs and make a living. Sorry to burst your bubbles. And it’s been good for some whilst not so good for others. I kinda like it myself.

        • SA

          Excellent way of saying: I am alright Jack.
          What you write is true but not sustainable in the long term. The US may be the richest and most powerful but its richness now is based on exploitative practices. The US is the only country which can print money in such a way that it can accumulate debts way beyond its means. The national debt is currently over 23 trillion and is constantly rising.
          https://tradingeconomics.com/united-states/government-debt
          You have to admit that any other nation would be under IMF and World Bank sanctions and its currency trashed. The US can meanwhile sanction any nation illegally and impose their own tariffs and force their exports on others even if toxic
          https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/10/thailand-pesticides-dow-monsanto-syngenta-trump
          You must also add a tinge of sadness to your smugness and delight at offering these poor Indians the same wage as you other workers, after all they are earning many times what they would back home, how generous. But they are also spending more. And moreover their presence here constitute a drain on their countries because it is those with some means and education, probably at the expense of their country’s tax payer, that makes them able to come over here and compete with our workers. Win all round! Not.
          It is this attitude of contented orientalism that characterizes many of the post colonial ‘enlightened’ individual that truly irks. At least people like Rees-Mogg and Johnson do not hide their disdain for lesser beings.
          There is simply nothing to defend or to be happy about the rampant capitalism that is based on exploitation, cartel domination and monopolies that characterize our corporate dominated world. The fact is that this also enforced through Imperial means is no cause for contentment.

          • Iain Stewart

            It is this attitude of contented orientalism that characterizes many of the post colonial ‘enlightened’ individual that truly irks. At least people like Rees-Mogg and Johnson do not hide their disdain for lesser beings.

            Nice bit of Loony style footwork there 🙂
            Has anyone else read Thomas Piketty’s ‘Capitalism in the twenty-first century’? Tough going, 800 pages only lightened by abundant graphs, but a fascinating history of wealth inequality, based on pretty firm data over the centuries, explaining where the current over concentration of capital is most likely leading (ie general doom) unless heavy taxation is brought back fast.

          • SA

            “Nice bit of Loony style footwork there ”
            Rather a superficial comment. The context is everything, what I have said has nothing to do with Loony’s politics.

          • Hatuey

            SA, you could define any relationship as exploitative.

            As for this nonsense: “their presence here constitute a drain on their countries because it is those with some means and education, probably at the expense of their country’s tax payer, that makes them able to come over here and compete with our workers…”

            They aren’t over here. I deal with them over the interweb.

            I’m sure you find some new basis for moaning. You’re clearly an analogue guy in a digital world.

            You say capitalism — by which you really mean what we call capitalism — is unsustainable but its future has never looked so bright in many ways. There is no serious threat from other ideologies or systems.

            I don’t see anyone queuing to replace it with anything, not really; they maybe want to tinker with it at the edges but nobody is proposing throwing the baby out with the bath water and certainly nobody is serious about getting rid of the bath altogether.

            It’s the end of history.

          • SA

            Hatuey
            And the dinosaur once dominated the earth without having an ideology.
            The system may appear to be working fine but is unsustainable because it is destroying the planet. That is some great success.
            BTW I apologise for assuming that you employ the ‘Indians’ here but that was not clear from your post.

          • Hatuey

            I looked into that guy, Iain. I don’t fancy his book. I don’t know enough about the subject to comment but I must assume that his focus is on economic relations and disparities in wealth within states rather than between them.

            I’m a technologist. Technology has confounded a few economists over the years, Malthus, Marx, etc.

            There’s a revolution going on right now and it’s driven by technology. It’s pushing us all towards meritocracy. In Britain we call it the gig economy but it’s really a meritocracy. More and more people with skills are selling their skills directly to those who require them, on a job y job basis, without bosses and middle men.

            On a certain level it’s a sort of syndicalism and if you hate authority and have some skills you will fit right in. It suits me.

            The problem with wealth concentration right now, as I see it, is that too many people and companies have stopped investing. Most of the wealth is sitting doing very little, gathering hardly any interest. Computers have more or less ruined the stock market too. There’s an underlying fear of risk everywhere and people are playing too safe.

            It’ll change when new technologies are better accommodated in societies and markets. Look at the potential of electric & driverless cars, drones delivering goods, solar power, wind power, etc. I like Labour’s plans to embrace all that stuff. I’d have an electric car in a jiffy if the infrastructure was in place to charge them, for example, but right now it isn’t.

            There’s a sort of lull with technology right now but you can see all this new stuff is about to roll out and change everything.

          • Hatuey

            SA “The system may appear to be working fine but is unsustainable because it is destroying the planet.”

            I agree. But I don’t think you’ll fix it unless you make life fairer for all. If everybody in China had the sort of material wealth we had in the west, you’d need about 40 planets. That’s not a viable or very appealing proposition.

            But who are we to say to those Chinese people can’t have this or that because it will impact negatively on the planet? That’s equally unappealing.

            So, what we need is a fairer system that gives everybody a chance, regardless of skin colour, nationality, etc. And we need new technologies that improve living standards without damaging the environment.

            Neo-Liberalism / “capitalism” is working on those things right now. The only thing that’s stopping the roll out is stupidity.

          • N_

            In Britain we call it the gig economy but it’s really a meritocracy. More and more people with skills are selling their skills directly to those who require them, on a job y job basis, without bosses and middle men.
            That second sentence is no support for the first. Dog eat dog in the labour force is everyone getting what they deserve?

            On a certain level it’s a sort of syndicalism and if you hate authority and have some skills you will fit right in. It suits me.
            The way you use terms, Hatuey! Scotland for you is a nation which has a strong national party that is not in the slightest bit nationalist, and an increasingly atomised labour force is “a sort of syndicalism”. Syndicalism is a form of collectively organised labour and it’s nothing like that.

            You’re a capitalist, and your idea that you’re not exploiting your workers because you’re only participating with them in the lovely marketplace, in which everyone at the end of the day gets what they deserve, is nonsense.

            It’ll change when new technologies are better accommodated in societies and markets. Look at the potential of electric & driverless cars, drones delivering goods, solar power, wind power, etc. I like Labour’s plans to embrace all that stuff. I’d have an electric car in a jiffy if the infrastructure was in place to charge them, for example, but right now it isn’t.

            Driverless cars? People are going to be laughing at that idea in a few years’ time. Mind you, since many are forgetting how to read and write it is possible that many will also forget how to drive a car, but that’s not in itself so relevant when the economic dynamic is towards one almighty CRASH, which could come at any time.

            There’s a sort of lull with technology right now but you can see all this new stuff is about to roll out and change everything.
            Technofascism is the word. This is a good article by Ian Tillium from 25 years ago.

            A note on “technology”: computer programs are NOT technology. They appeal, however, to those with a von Neumann-ist attitude of treating people like objects, and that is to put it mildly. Think of what “friend” has come to mean nowadays, or “like”, or “share”. The term “information technology” is a bullsh*t confusionist term.

          • N_

            Computer programs are NOT technology.” For those who baulk at that statement, let’s consider a very simple case. There are 100 people in a room. The snakehead who wants to feed them so that they can sell sexual services in back rooms in “health shops” and make money for him (let’s call it the “gig meritocracy”, eh?) decides he’s going to use facial recognition technology so he can pick out those who turned most tricks in the last week and give them the most food. Those who consistently only turn few tricks he will eventually dump in a refrigerated lorry in Tilbury because he thinks they’re more trouble than they’re “worth”. (How we all love market freedom, eh?) He installs gadgets on their arms which give them electric shocks if they queue out of place and which also alert his goons so they can be meted out a good kicking.

            The surveillance cameras are technology.
            The electric shock gadgets are technology.

            The computer program that handles the information is not technology. It’s a list of instructions.

        • Doghouse

          So agreed then, external forces driving what is essentially global policy, not our old friends the politicos, who as usual simply act as service to those forces. Not sure where conspiracy came in or that it is the kind of inane word you seem to imply, if that is not the case and I have interpreted incorrectly apologies in advance. It is in fact an offence contrary to Common Law whereby people are charged with conspiracy after the police cease theorising whether or not they were actually conspiring. …

          • Hatuey

            Doghouse, there’s a faction on here who openly talk about this stuff in terms of a neo-liberal conspiracy. They’ve been lurking online since about 2001, talking about bilderberg and 911 being an inside job, etc.

            Brexit has brought them out In huge numbers. It’s no coincidence that tend to be uneducated and are opting for these simplistic explanations of things.

            And its no coincidence that they’re angry right now either, since being uneducated today, when you need to compete with sharp people from all over the world, leaves you at a huge disadvantage.

            The system we call capitalism, thanks to liberalism and new technologies, is moving towards meritocracy. Those without merit naturally find that threatening. If they had any sense, they’d shut up — only opening their mouths to feed (on the fruits of capitalism) and to say “thanks”.

            Btw, those manufacturing jobs were all crap. And only an idiot would want to go down a coal mine every day to make a living. If I resent the way Thatcher destroyed Scotland’s industrial base, it’s only because she deprived us of the privilege of doing it ourselves.

          • portside

            You just betray your own political leanings if you think neoliberalism is a natural and satisfactory state of human affairs. There is a sole purpose to all neoliberal policies: to benefit a society’s richest interests at the expense of everybody else. Any other effects are purely incidental to that goal.

            And it is all perfectly open, in plain sight. Nothing whatever to do with bilderberg or lizards. (Although there was certainly a conspiratorial spect to its beginnings in America with the Powell Memorandum 9f the early 79s). I understand why Tories like yourself, Doghouse and Michael Norton want to pretend today’s hegemonic ideology is just a state of nature or consequence of technological advance, but you are really golling nobody but yourselves.

          • Hatuey

            portside, I never used the word “natural” and frankly I have no idea what it means in the context of human behaviour.

            The system we call capitalism today, which is no more capitalism than the Soviet system was socialism, has many serious problems. That’s why I want to change it and I think a real capitalist system with more stringent enforcement of rules, etc. managed democratically, is the obvious solution.

            I don’t see what people in the west have going for them that entitles them to a higher standard of living than the rest. I think a meritocracy that gave people in the second and third world an equal chance in business and industry would be a major improvement over what we have. It looks to me like racists and nation states, managed by nationalist governments, are an obstacle to that sort of progress.

            Protectionism and other obstacles to things like migration aimed at protecting the living standards of people in the west (or anywhere), all pivot on a sort of racism in my opinion, an assumption of superiority. But I have no reason to believe that Europeans or Americans are superior to people from say Africa, Asia, or South America. On one hand we rig the deck with this all stuff whilst on the other we bomb countries that stray too far to the left, as defined by us.

            Western “Socialist” governments are the worst hypocrites when it comes to all of the above and so much else.

          • N_

            @Hatuey – “The system we call capitalism, thanks to liberalism and new technologies, is moving towards meritocracy. Those without merit naturally find that threatening.

            You’re a tartan Tory.

          • wonky

            @hatuey
            You wear your calvinist blinkers with pride, ey?
            Don’t be a fool. Embrace Jesus and The Truth before Mt Pelerin bites you in the gonads, too.

          • Doghouse

            Portside – Genuine question – are you a maniac or have you never read anything I have posted??
            If you think I am a tory you are about as far off the mark as it gets. The same would apply if you labelled me to any political party, any country, any race, any religion any affiliation with anything other than humanity and existence in general, and a hope that one day, some distant day, there will be a well being for all. I am a pacifist through and through and there isn’t a political leader or a politician of any influence that can say the same. Do your damned homework before you label people on a whim. I accept people at face value, you prove yourself to be a slanderer who fools himself into believing he is smarter than he demonstrably is.

          • portside

            Doghouse, okay you’re a pacifist.
            But the subject under discussion is not war but the political ideology of neoliberalism. I assumed you must be a Tory because you deny the British Conservative party played any significant role in first putting the ideology into practise. Instead you suggest neoliberalism’s prevalence today has no political origins and imy it has no explanation at all. If you are not a Tory then I apologize but these are the only comments of yours I have ever seen.

          • portside

            Hatuey, the neoliberal project was not put into action by anti racists hoping to raise up the developing world. You were closer to the truth in a previous comment when you said the motive was to chase cheap labour to the furthest reaches of the globe. In any case the much vaunted claim that corporate neoliberalism has taken billions out of extreme poverty in the developing world in recent decades is quite erroneous. About 3/4 of those raised from extreme poverty have been in China, whilw most of the rest have been raised from poverty by accessing cheap products from that decidedly heterodox, state-directed and protected economy.

          • Hatuey

            Portsied: “the neoliberal project was not put into action by anti racists hoping to raise up the developing world”

            And I didn’t say it was. If you’re simply going to invent things, couldn’t you at least make them interesting?

          • Hatuey

            N: “You’re a tartan Tory.”

            Just sowing seeds… some grow, some don’t.

            If you want to be serious about it though, I’m happy to admit that there are aspects of liberalism and what we call capitalism that I like. To disregard it all as worthless would be idiotic.

            I also like some aspects of socialist doctrine; my big problem with the left is the leftists themselves, not the ideology per se. I think the left played a big part in us losing the 2014 referendum too, but that’s another story.

      • Paul Barbara

        @ Herbie November 10, 2019 at 01:01
        You could start with the never-ever-audited ‘Federal Reserve’, but you would come to a sticky end, like everyone else who has suggested it.

  • J Arther Nast

    Boris Johnson is a loser, either he loses to Corbyn or he will go down in Tory history as the man who lost Scotland.

  • Alyson

    Just watched the Cenotaph. What the F is Priti Patel doing, laying a wreath on behalf of MI5, MI6, and the Intelligence communities??? She is utterly corrupt, and clearly has a lot more power than is healthy for Britain…..

    • Alyson

      But then again, the government is sitting on a report about Russian involvement, in British politics, which allegedly shows how the largest donors to the Conservative Party are Russian oligarchs. This perhaps puts a different light on the events in Salisbury?

    • N_

      What the F is Priti Patel doing, laying a wreath on behalf of MI5, MI6, and the Intelligence communities???

      In the case of MI5, her job. As for MI6 and GCHQ, was Dominic Raab busy?

  • N_

    It’s interesting that there has been a constant feature ALL THREE TIMES that Boris Johnson has run for major office (London mayoralty, 2008 and 2012) or led a party in an election campaign that, if successful, would lead to his gaining or retaining major office (prime ministership, 2019).

    Can anyone guess what it is?

    Every time, the Zionist lobby has helped him to the max by smearing his opponent as an “anti-Semite”.

    I refer to Ken Livingstone (2008, 2012) and Jeremy Corbyn (2019), two lifelong anti-racist Labour politicians on the party’s left wing.

    Johnson is the man whose stepmother, a member of the rabidly Zionist Sieff family that owns Marks and Spencer, cooperated with an Israeli former ambassador to help him during his stay in Israel as a young man.

    Just what are this man’s connections with the Lobby?

    • Hatuey

      Isn’t it possible that like so many other politicians he has a range of connections and people who support him and you are singling out the Jewish ones to suit some preconceived theory you have conjured up?

      I’d be willing to bet, for example, that people who aren’t Jewish have helped him too. I’d be willing to also bet that he has occasionally fallen out with Jewish people throughout his career. But none of that can have a place in your theory, can it?

      • portside

        Oh look who’s acting as Boris’s human shield it’s the “neoliberalism is nature” guy..

        • Doghouse

          Monumental arrogance. Before you stick labels willy nilly to all and sundry there’s a reply to you at 12.32. Try to display some civility and respect for others from behind your little anonymous keyboard..

      • Alex Westlake

        A simpler explanation would be that both of the opponents in question are actually antisemites, and there’s plenty of evidence to back this up. No one ever suggested that Jeremy Hunt was an antisemite during the Party leadership election

      • N_

        @Hatuey

        Isn’t it possible that like so many other politicians he has a range of connections and people who support him and you are singling out the Jewish ones to suit some preconceived theory you have conjured up?

        I’d be willing to bet, for example, that people who aren’t Jewish have helped him too. I’d be willing to also bet that he has occasionally fallen out with Jewish people throughout his career. But none of that can have a place in your theory, can it?

        You think you are so clever, @Hatuey, but your logic there is appalling. (I sometimes recommend a reading of Mill’s methods.) To my knowledge there are three times in recent British history when the Jewish lobby has OPENLY and FEROCIOUSLY worked against a politician in a big election. The first two times were against Ken Livingstone in London mayoral elections, and the third time is right now, against Jeremy Corbyn. Every time the candidate who would win if the campaign against the hate target was successful has been the same man, Boris Johnson. That man is now prime minister. Of course he has had some non-Jews who have supported him, and he may have fallen out with some Jews too. So what? The organised Jewish lobby (which is an organisation) doesn’t mean the same as “the collection of all Jews”. Some Jews support Jeremy Corbyn. Some support Hamas. Some vomit on all the faces of international and national capitalism.

        • Alex Westlake

          We were pointing out Corbyn’s antisemitism before Boris Johnson became Prime Minister. It was an issue in the 2017 General Election campaign, and in the 2018 Barnet Council election

        • Hatuey

          I’ve studied JS Mill — and his father — in detail. There’s very little in anything he has written that i’d say was worth repeating. And since he played such an important role in administering British India, I’d say he was a lousy example of hypocrite. And his sentences are simply too long.

          Now, N, you seem to have clumsily jumped from attacking zionists to attacking the jewish lobby which you try to reassure us by saying it doesn’t mean “the collection of all Jews”. Thank God for that eh.

          I don’t have a unified view on jews, muslims, christians, hindus, or any other religious group. I’m atheist in actual fact but not in any sort of aggressive way — I wish I believed in something and I like bits of all religions. I think if they merged into one it would be much more fun and I’d maybe be persuaded.

          As for Jews in particular which you seem to have an unhealthy obsession with in my opinion, I honestly don’t judge them on the basis of their religion or even their zionism. I’m not trying to be clever either. People are good and bad, some more good than others, some more bad. I judge people on what they say and do.

          I think what Israel is doing in Palestine is disgraceful but many Jewish people I know agree and feel more strongly than I do about that. Some of the best work done in exposing israeli crimes in the occupied territories stems from jewish groups, like b’tselem. I’m profoundly grateful to those groups and the people involved.

          I even know people who believe in the cause of zionism whom I would describe as extremely reasonable and well-meaning, even if I can’t agree with the central premises or practices of zionism.

          This stuff isn’t as simple as some think and if you go into it with preconceived ideas about right and wrong, Jews, zionists, etc., you’ll achieve nothing. I’m not criticising you when i say that. I have more experience in this area than I’d care to mention.

          Zionism isn’t what people think it is. It’s a fairly simple if fundamentally bad idea which appealed to a group of people who had suffered some of the worst persecution in all history. By persecution I don’t just mean at the hands of the nazis. It goes back centuries. In tsarist Russia it was taken to new depths.

          I think the problem would be resolved in a few weeks if the west and the US in particular didn’t provide Israel with such high level support.

      • Paul Barbara

        @ Hatuey November 11, 2019 at 00:06
        N_ doesn’t need to ‘conjure up preconceived theories’, just revisit Al Jazeera’s ‘The Lobby’.
        I suggest that is just the tip of the iceberg; most of the ‘influencing’ will take place much more subtly and securely.

        • Hatuey

          Nobody who comments on here is more sympathetic towards the Palestinians than I am. My problem with N is that I think there is a difference between anti-zionism and antisemitism and I think that he sails pretty close to the wind on that.

          • glenn_uk

            Nobody who comments on here is more sympathetic towards the Palestinians than I am.

            And your proof of that is…?

            This is the sort of hyperbole that shows you’re not anything like as clever as you so obviously consider yourself to be, and demonstrates the arrogance which brings about your insufferable condescending attitude.

            For instance, you like to pretend Corbyn is an anti-Semite. He’s the only candidate who gives a stuff about the Palestinians. But you want to take cheap shots at him like that – absolute lies and you know it. Nobody who will replace him – and certainly not his opponents in other parties – will ever even pretend to care about Palestinians again.

            Of course, this will give you no pause for thought whatsoever, because one would have to be capable of self reflection to achieve that.

          • Hatuey

            My understanding of Labour’s anti-semitism problems are based on a couple of things;

            1) what leading Labour politicians themselves have said. I have given a link to John McDonnell recently stating in the bluntest terms that he doesn’t believe it’s a smear, that it’s a real issue, and that they should face up to it.

            2) why should I care or make allowances for smears against Labour, if this is a smear, when not only has the Labour party done nothing towards addressing the smears deployed against the Scottish Independence movement but have actively taken part in and fomented many of the smears?

            To be absolutely clear, though, I have no interest in the labour party and couldn’t care less if they have an anti-semitism problem or not. If I gave the impression that I did care, I should apologise.

            Labour don’t really have a role in Scottish politics — outside of occasionally trying to throw the boot in at Scottish Independence supporters and the SNP — and since I regard England as a foreign country, we have no reason to pretend we are at odds with one another.

  • No to mass murder

    One of the most twisted interviews I’ve ever heard this morning on Today, Radio 4 (ended at about 0823). Corbyn being criticised for being against wars… very poorly defended by Emily Thornberry. Wars apparently are good and anyone who doesn’t want one has something wrong with them.

    The BBC should be calling to account the people like Johnson who voting for the invasion of Iraq… something I’ve yet to hear. Hundreds of thousands of deaths on a pack of lies and they carry on their career crawls as if nothing happening. No question who made the right call – but its Corbyn who gets criticised.

    • Peter

      Simply put, someone needs to go in to the Today studio and take Robinson apart – I mean on argument grounds of course – it really wouldn’t be that hard and it would set fire to social media.

      For instance, you can be sure Robinson won’t be asking Johnson why he voted for the Iraq war, the bombing of Libya, a regime change military assault on Syria or Saudi’s continuing atrocities in Yemen – each and every one leading to death and destruction on a grand scale and contributing nothing but the appalling worsening of the situation on the ground – not to mention his documented lies about the Skripal case.

      There is no question but that the safety of the country, our ‘defence’ forces and, indeed, the rest of the world would be safer and better protected in the hands of Corbyn than those of Johnson.

      It’s high time the tables were turned, literally, on our publicly funded Tory Broadcasting Corporation.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    The talk o’ the steamie on character restricted social media is the BBC running two year old footage of Johnson placing a wreath at the Cenotaph rather than footage from yesterday when he slightly messed it up.

    Home Office supported, third sector outfit Faith Matters found out trashing Jeremy Corbyn.
    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/faith-matters-jeremy-corbyn-twitter-home-office

    A reasonably decent piece on BBC Radio Scotland’s, John Beattie show today on the Scottish Charity Commissioner taking the Intergrity Initiative / IoS down a peg or two (but not striking it off). This was covered last week on MoA.

  • Yr Hen Gof

    Can the BBC plumb further depths?
    This morning in BBC Breakfast’s coverage of yesterday’s service at the Cenotaph, they chose not the show the video of Boris Johnson dressed perhaps with a little less care than he might have taken (a criticism normally reserved for the Leader of the Opposition) and laying his wreath upside down but instead chose a video taken from the 2016 ceremony, where he performed somewhat better.
    Quite apart from him being dressed differently and it being a different wreath, it was rather obvious that the leader of the Lib Dems in 2016 was of course Tim Farron, not Jo Swinson.
    Their excuse: “a production error”.
    Must have been really tricky finding yesterday’s video, shot and broadcast live, when the 2016 one somewhere in their back catalogue just fell to hand.
    Reminds me of their efforts at Orgreave in 1984.

  • Paul Barbara

    To those counselling or threatening not to vote Labour, I believe one more 5-year stretch of Tory’s and their US ‘deals’ will do for the UK good and proper.
    GMO’s, widespread Fracking, decimation of the NHS and 5G are not things that can be reversed next time round. Lose this chance to get a true Labour Government (with warts) and welcome in the 51st (Banana) State.
    And as the MSM is mostly derided and detested on this Blog, with good reason, learn another reason it behaves as it does. Udo Ulfkottes’ book is now available in English under the title ‘Presstitutes Embedded in the Pay of the CIA: A Confession from the Profession’.

  • ity

    Mr Murray, I’ve just posted on the Guardian under a Martin Rowson cartoon, in which I mentioned this article, and gave a summary of the excellent points that you have made. My post was moderated in less than 15 minutes. The only Guardian rule that could have been breached, as far as I can see, would be the one concerning copyright.

    So I’m just hoping for reassurance that it wasn’t you who’s objected to being mentioned and paraphrased BTL in the Guardian? I wouldn’t have thought this to be the case, but would just like to know for sure, before I throw a hissy fit at the Guardian.

    And love your work, many thanks.

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