Ever Further Right 155

Well over 70% of migrants arriving in small boats are eventually found by the British state to be genuine refugees seeking asylum. I know this from a quite remarkable speech by Lord Kerr.

John Kerr is something of a mystery to me. I came across a video of this simply superb speech he made in the House of Lords last November (I missed it as I was in jail). It is well worth reading:

It really is not a pleasure to follow the noble Lord, Lord Desai, because he raises the bar far too high. I am grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Hoey, for this appallingly well-timed debate, to which I would just like to contribute three sets of facts. First, overall refugee numbers are currently running at about half of where they were 20 years ago. We are not the preferred destination in Europe. We are, as the noble Baroness, Lady Hamwee, said, well down the list of preferred destinations.

Secondly, yes, small boat numbers are up, partly for the reason the noble Lord, Lord Berkeley, adduced — the fences, patrols and heat sensors around the train tracks and marshalling yards mean that people are now driven to the even more dangerous sea route. But the principal reason clandestine numbers are up is that official resettlement routes are shut. Our schemes, in practice, no longer exist. We have closed the Syrian scheme, we have scrapped the Dubs scheme, we have left Dublin III and we have not got an Afghan scheme up and running. The largest group crossing the channel in the last 18 months, by nationality, were Iranians. In the last 18 months, 3,187 Iranians came. In the same period, one got in by the official route. How many came from Yemen in these 18 months? Yemen is riven by civil war and famine. None came by the official route — not one.

My third set of facts is as in the point made by the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett. The Home Secretary says that 70% of channel crossers are

“economic migrants … not genuine asylum seekers”.

That is plainly not true. Her own department’s data show that, of the top 10 nationalities arriving in small boats, virtually all seek asylum—61% are granted it at the initial stage and 59% of the rest on appeal. The facts suggest that well over 70% of asylum seekers coming across the channel in small boats are genuine asylum seekers, not economic migrants.

That is hardly surprising because the top four countries they come from are Iran, Iraq, Sudan and Syria — not Ghana, I say to the noble Lord, Lord Lilley. These people are fleeing persecution and destitution, and the sea route from France is the only one open to many of them. Why not have a humanitarian visa, as the noble Baroness, Lady Hamwee, said? The noble Viscount, Lord Waverley, gave the answer to the objection of the noble Lord, Lord Lilley. Those who had a valid claim for asylum would not be at peril on the sea.

Unless we provide a safe route, we are complicit with the people smugglers. Yes, we can condemn their case and we mourn yesterday’s dead, but that does not seem to stop us planning to break with the refugee convention. Our compassion is well controlled because it does not stop us planning, in the borders Bill, to criminalise those who survive the peril of the seas and those at Dover who try to help them. Of course, we can go down that road. But if we do, let us at least be honest enough to admit that what drives us down that road is sheer political prejudice, not the facts, because the facts do not support the case for cruelty.

That is a great speech and I applaud the humanitarianism behind it.

John Kerr is ostensibly a pillar of the Establishment – the former head of the British diplomatic service. To those people who believe in shadowy world governments and the great reset, John Kerr would appear to be right at the heart of darkness. He was for 12 years secretary of the Bilderberg Group and is a member of the executive committee of the Trilateral Commission. He was for 13 years a trustee of the Rhodes Trust. He was a key architect of the merger that created Royal Dutch Shell plc of which he was Deputy Chairman. I could go on and on.

He is a crossbench member of the House of Lords, meaning not party affiliated.

You do not expect somebody of that background to be making such a strong, unqualified attack on the government in parliament from the liberal left, openly calling Priti Patel a liar:

The Home Secretary says that 70% of channel crossers are “economic migrants … not genuine asylum seekers”. That is plainly not true.

I first dealt with John Kerr in the Foreign Office which he then headed when embroiled in the “Arms to Africa” affair. I must say I liked him immediately – fiercely intelligent, very much to the point, but with a constant twinkle in his eye. I make no claim the liking was mutual. But I also sensed, as you do when discussing policy issues, that the political direction he came from was not that different to my own.

Five years later I was quitting the FCO as a whistleblower, John Kerr having retired in the interim (for what it’s worth, I have always felt that had he still been in post, matters would have been resolved internally and my life have been very different). My split with the FCO over torture and extraordinary rendition was then front page news, and Angus Robertson, then one of the tiny SNP group in Westminster, asked to see me (this was 2004).

I briefed Robertson in Portcullis House on my whistleblowing (having at that time no suspicions of the man). I also spoke to him about Scotland’s maritime boundaries and the international law route to achieving independence, offering any assistance I could to the SNP. He more or less told me that I wasn’t needed, explaining in a conspiratorial whisper “we’ve got John Kerr”. That was much more surprising of Salmond’s more radical SNP than it would be of the corporatist SNP now.

Liz Truss was referring to the FCDO when she said the civil service was “woke” and had “creeping antisemitism”. She was specifically referring to Foreign Office officials minuting Israeli human rights violations.

Truss was also annoyed by Foreign Office officials pointing out Rwanda’s very bad human rights record in relation to the plan to deport asylum seekers there. She has tried to suppress some of these minutes from FCDO officials by public interest immunity certificates, which are today being challenged in the courts.

The political culture of the FCDO is not left wing at all, I can assure you – particularly not after twelve years of Tory governments controlling the top appointments. There does remain, however, a certain level of commitment to honesty which plainly Truss found highly inconvenient. When the government has moved so far right that it cannot work with civil servants who are just carrying out their job, when as conventional a figure as John Kerr is appalled by government cruelty, our society has very plainly moved towards fascism.

The drift to the right has become a surge.


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155 thoughts on “Ever Further Right

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  • Mist001

    “These people are fleeing persecution and destitution”

    So refugees and asylum seekers are coming to a country where for example, people on ‘benefits’ are experiencing persecution and destitution too. One of the attractions for refugees and asylum seekers is that they are less likely to be killed by a missile or bomb in the UK.

    The other attraction is that English is very widely spoken throughout the world. Refugees and asylum seekers are more likely to have a basic grasp of English rather than French, for example. This is obviously going to make it a bit easier when navigating the forms, applications and general bureaucracy that they’re going to encounter.

    You can’t blame refugees and asylum seekers for going to Britain. If I were a refugee, I’d be trying to get to Britain too.

    • MrShigemitsu

      Language familiarity apart, many refugees also choose a particular country to move to for the very important reason that they have family members who are already settled there. The support this can offer is immense.

      That was certainly the case in my family’s history.

  • Dom

    “The drift to the right has become a surge”

    That’s because official opposition is no longer led by a humanitarian socialist but by an arch-authoritarian racist neoliberal who is always trying to outflank the Tories from the right. Expect things to get progressively worse.

    • Bayard

      I am reminded of Sir Humphrey explaining that the “Opposition” isn’t the opposition, they are merely the government in waiting and that the true opposition is the civil service.

    • Bramble

      Humanitarian socialists are not electable and are uniformly hated from the centre-left rightwards. Democracy prefers flag-waving warmongers who are rude, ruthless and contemptuous of the vulnerable. Also have finely tuned receivers when it comes to discerning whose side to be on.

      • Bayard

        “Humanitarian socialists are not electable”

        That’s the message the right would have you believe, but the amount of effort they have to put in to make sure that it is the case shows that it is not the natural order of things.

        • FranzB

          Corbyn got 40% in 2017, with the right wing of the Labour party working against him. True, if elected he would have been couped a la Harry Perkins in Chris Mullin’s book.

          • Bramble

            Though this would have been so unexpected, such a reversal of the trend ever rightwards, such a vindication of the tens of thousands of people who saw in Corbyn’s Labour Party a chance for better things, that perhaps the momentum gained would have been enough to overwhelm the malign forces of the centrists (and shut up, at least for a whle, those who criticised Mr Corbyn from the left). We were denied that moment. I prefer to see Mullin’s book as a warning rather than a prophecy – something to guard against, so it doesn’t happen. Instead it has just cemented in the defeatism that seems to have confounded the genuine left.

          • Squeeth

            Your fantasies founder on the rock of Corbyn’s moral cowardice and ruthlessness towards his allies that could only be dreamt of by his enemies.

          • Bayard

            Cowardice, perhaps, but Corbyn’s problem was a lack of ruthlessness. If he had been ruthless, he would have got all the Blairites deselected at the first GE he faced as leader by getting the constituencies to choose their own candidates.

          • Bayard

            I disagree. If you are ruthless, you are ruthless to everyone. His lack of support for his allies was simply weakness, was it not? That was the problem with Corbyn, there was no steel in him. Not being a bit of a bastard makes you attractive, but it doesn’t make you a good leader of a political party.

          • Squeeth

            Remind me what he did to Ken Livingstone and how in the report he claimed that he’d tried to purge him quicker but been obstructed by the fascist pigs at head office.

          • Bayard

            “how in the report he claimed that he’d tried to purge him quicker “

            Which report would that be? there were so many.

          • Squeeth

            Forde? I can’t be bothered to remember but Corbyn’s apologia was that his attempts to purge his allies was sabotaged by central office.

          • Bayard

            I doubt the authors of the report were very sympathetic to Corbyn, so the Mandy Rice-Davies Rule applies.

        • Allan Howard

          The posters here accusing Jeremy Corbyn of being a coward are either ignorant of the reality OR deliberately smearing him. I challenge any and all of them to explain what he could have done – ie what he could have said – to refute the accusations of antisemitism. The following article in the Mail – published the day Ken Livingstone was suspended – exemplifies what happens when he refutes and denies such claims – ie how his enemies respond and are given a ‘voice’ by the hostile MSM. And bear in mind that THIS was at the point when the A/S smear campaign kicked off really big time:

          Labour in crisis over ‘anti-semitic’ scandal: MPs demand Corbyn gets his ‘head out of the sand’ after Red Ken is SUSPENDED for claiming Hitler backed moving the Jews to Israel…..
          Daily Mail, 28 April 2016

          Jeremy Corbyn tonight denied Labour was facing an anti-Semitism crisis despite being forced to suspend his old friend Ken Livingstone for claiming Hitler was a ‘Zionist’.

          Senior Labour MPs tonight expressed horror at the attempt to play down the explosive row, which has rocked the party just a week before crucial elections.

          Former minister Ian Austin told MailOnline: ‘Just seven days from polling day and instead of knocking on doors like the rest of us, Ken Livingstone is treating us to his weird views on Adolf Hitler and his offensive views on Jewish people.

          ‘The media are talking about nothing else, the party is having to suspend people on almost a daily basis and Jeremy thinks there’s no problem?’

          Mr Austin continued: ‘It looks like a pretty big problem to everyone else. Labour’s reputation is being destroyed and instead of pretending there’s no problem Jeremy needs to act and he needs to act now.’

          John Woodcock, a senior backbencher, told MailOnline: ‘Many thousands of Labour members will be bewildered by the hideous remarks of Ken Livingstone and are looking to Jeremy Corbyn to swipe the moment and tackle Labour’s anti-Semitism problem.

          ‘He must not bury his head in the sand in the face of this madness.’

          And as you will see if you read the article, the DM repeats the falsehood three times that Ken had said Hitler was a Zionist, and then AGAIN at the beginning of an article that follows on from the first one. When your enemies own and/or control the media and, as such, the narrative, then you are in a no-win situation.

          NB As I’m sure everyone who follows Craig knows, Ken was alluding to The Haavara Agreement when he said – in passing, and in response to something Vanessa Feltz said – that Hitler was supporting Zionism. As did all those who falsely vilified him of course, AND the MSM who played along with their faux outrage!

          • Allan Howard

            And as for being ruthless:

            List of MPs who ‘undermined’ Jeremy Corbyn sparks furore in Labour Party leadership race
            International Business Times, 15 September 2016

            The Labour Party’s leadership race has taken a bitter turn after it emerged that MPs who oppose leader Jeremy Corbyn could be targeted and face deselection.

            A list by Corbyn’s campaign team was issued on Wednesday (15 September) singling out 14 Labour MPs it claims abused the leader and his allies.

            The list, obtained by the Press Association, highlighted Labour MPs such as Jess Phillips for telling Corbyn’s ally Diane Abbott to “f**k off”, John Woodcock for dismissing the party leader as a “f***ing disaster” and Tristram Hunt for describing Labour as “in the s**t”.


            Hmm, I wonder how the PA ‘obtained’ the list! As I said, when the MSM is owned and/or controlled by your enemies…. Whatever Jeremy did it was ALWAYS painted in such a way as to paint him in a negative light and demonise him and smear him.

          • Allan Howard

            And just one last point, in relation to what Craig said about John Kerr – ie

            ‘John Kerr is ostensibly a pillar of the Establishment – the former head of the British diplomatic service. To those people who believe in shadowy world governments……’

            During his term as leader there were some 13,000 plus articles in the MSM like the two I posted above about A/S (let alone the other smears), and if one includes the Jewish newspapers and the regional newspapers etc, it was WELL over 20.000. And if one includes TV and radio news bulletins…..!

            Funnily enough, earlier on today I was watching TRT World and there was a guy on one program called Aaron Good, and in a caption at the bottom of the page giving his name, it said Author of: American Exception: Empire and the Deep State, whereby I checked out the book and the reviews on Amazon……

          • Allan Howard

            Apologies, but I just want to post the following bit from a MediaLens piece:

            Our ProQuest database search of newspaper articles for ‘Corbyn’ and ‘anti-semitism’ shows how intensively the issue has been used to attack Corbyn prior to the looming election on December 12 [2019]:

            • September = 337 hits
            • October = 222 hits
            • November = 1,620 hits

            While opinions in effect declaring Corbyn a Nazi are widely reported, opinions defending Corbyn by the likes of John Bercow, Gideon Levy, Norman Finkelstein, Glenn Greenwald, Noam Chomsky, Jonathan Cook, Michael Rosen and others reach a comparatively small audience on social media but are simply ignored by the establishment press reaching millions.


  • Vivian O’Blivion

    Can’t fault his intellect but his arithmetic isn’t great.
    While his statement is accurate, “ well over 70%”, the exact figure (derived from his information) is 84%.

    • elkern

      Pretty sure he used “well over 70%” because he was rebutting Patel’s claim that “70% of channel-crosses are economic migrants”. Kerr’s point is that Patel’s has the numbers upside-down and backwards; using “well over 70” drives that point home best.

      • Robert

        Possibly. But since others will quote the 70% without the context (as CM has), Kerr would have better saying something like “not just 70%, but 84%…”

  • Natasha

    Honesty being “inconvenient” for psychopaths like Truss as evidence of “government cruelty” is simply a symptom of the global rush towards fascism, which in turn is a symptom of ‘peak oil’ i.e. ‘Energy Returned On Energy Invested’ becoming too uneconomic for extractors to invest in future supply demand i.e. fuel is too expensive to carry on running civilization.


    Truss and all the other political / corporate / military psychopaths know this at least at some basic emotional level, i.e. that modern civilisations’ primary energy – FOSSIL FUEL – supply is fast running out and CAN’T BE REPLACED by wind or solar (since they require high energy density fossil fuels to build).


    When (medium energy density) coal took off in the early 1800’s (replacing low energy density water, wind & wood) globally only 1 billion people were alive. Burning coal for about 120 years enabled global population to double to 2 billion in 1927 when oil was beginning to take off. Over the next 50 years it doubled again to 4 billion in 1974. And over the last 50 years its doubled again to nearly 8 billion today.

    Without cheap plentiful fossil fuels human civilization is collapsing already : expect global population numbers to shrink at a much faster rate than the historic population growth outline above i.e. complexity cannot be sustained and elites like Truss will do all they can to cheat others everywhere out of fair shares of diminishing resources.

    Chris Hedges is recently beginning to understand this inevitability too.


    • Lapsed Agnostic

      As I may have mentioned before, Natasha, fossil fuels aren’t running out and they CAN BE REPLACED by wind and solar energy because you don’t need fossil fuels to build wind turbines and photo-voltaic panels since you can use biofuels instead. Biofuels are already being used on an immense scale, such as bio-ethanol from corn / maize making up around 10% of US petrol – or ‘gas’ as they call it over there.

      • Bayard

        “fossil fuels aren’t running out and they CAN BE REPLACED by wind and solar energy”

        No they can’t, NOT EVEN IF YOU SAY IT LOUDLY. There are two main problems with wind and solar, 1, that they are intermittent and can be absent for weeks at a time and 2, lack of energy density means that storage will always be a problem, whether such storage uses batteries (scarcity of naturally occurring elements needed to make them) or gravity (inefficiency in converting energy from one form to another). The same problem with energy density limits electricity’s use for motive power. The future lies in making synthetic hydrocarbon-based fuels.

        • Steve Hayes

          There’s also hydrogen, electrolysed from intermittent renewables, stored at large scale, then used directly as a fuel. There looks to be a lot of work happening on that. Various flow battery possibilities exist too but details are scarce. What’s ironic is seeing nuclear lobbyists touting nuclear/hydrogen without noticing that once you have the hydrogen storage to handle varying demand, you can use much cheaper intermittent renewables almost as easily as nuclear.

          • Bayard

            Hydrogen shares with electricity the same problems as a source of motive power, apart from in airships.

          • Natasha

            Steve Hayes offers faulty (this time it’s hydrogen) logic claiming it can be “electrolysed from intermittent renewables” – but:

            1. Hydrogen is an energy carrier NOT a fuel source.
            2. Hydrogen’s energy density is far too low to power the economy even when pressurised.
            3. Hydrogen thus needs very HEAVY storage containers & transport pipes, further reducing its net energy density.
            4. Hydrogen ALWAYS LEAKS. Always. It is the smallest of all molecules.
            5. Hydrogen explodes very EASILY.
            6. Intermittent renewables are ALREADY net liquid hydrocarbon sinks so using such expensive and fossil fuel hungry resources to build hardware for electrolysing hydrogen is impossible to scale beyond investor story-time one-off plants here and there – for details see my post here.
            7. etc….

            The proposed Green Hydrogen economy does not make sense. The amount of sustainable electricity required for heating buildings and powering lorries – and its considerable cost – makes Green Hydrogen a complete non-starter. Green hydrogen doesn’t make sense as a storage mechanism either – because the round-trip efficiency is so low that it could never compete on price with alternatives.


            Pursuing the hydrogen economy as a climate solution will be a big mistake. What is clear is that hydrogen-powered e-cars will increasingly become more expensive to drive than battery-powered vehicles, not only in terms of purchase, but above also in terms of operation. The double primary energy requirement of hydrogen-powered vehicles compared to battery-powered vehicles will be reflected in consumer prices.


            The Hydrogen Hoax: Confessions of a Former Hydrogenist. The “hydrogen economy” is like a zombie: no matter how many times it is slain, it keeps coming at you. Like a Hollywood zombie movie, hydrogen seems to exert a tremendous fascination because it is being sold to people as a way to keep doing everything we have been doing without any need for sacrifices or for changing our ways. Unfortunately, reality is not a movie, and the reverse is also true. Hydrogen is a pie-in-the-sky that delays the real innovation that would make it possible to phase out fossil fuels from the world’s energy mix.


            Hydrogen: The dumbest & most impossible renewable. The laws of physics mean the hydrogen economy will always be an energy sink. Hydrogen’s properties require you to spend more energy than you can earn, because in order to do so you must overcome water’s hydrogen-oxygen bond, move heavy cars, prevent leaks and brittle metals, and transport hydrogen to the destination. It doesn’t matter if all of these problems are solved, or how much money is spent. You will use more energy to create, store, and transport hydrogen than you will ever get out of it. Any diversion of declining fossil fuels to a hydrogen economy subtracts that energy from other possible uses, such as planting, harvesting, delivering, and cooking food, heating homes, and other essential activities.


          • Bayard

            Natasha, more than 50% of the gas that was supplied through the gas mains in the UK before the introduction of methane was hydrogen. Thus we can see that:

            1. It was an energy source,
            2. It powered, to some extent, the economy. It could be burnt at a higher temperature than the methane that replaced it.
            3. It used the same storage facilities and pipes as its replacement, methane, so nothing out of the ordinary,
            4. There were no appreciable problems with leaks,
            5. So does methane and any other gaseous fuel. That’s why they are fuels.
            6. Repeating something doesn’t make it true.

            We can easily replace methane with hydrogen, because that is what we used before, and it worked. Since most of the rest of the old “town gas” was methane anyway, it makes much more sense simply to use hydrogen to extend the supplies of methane.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Completely correct on all points Bayard. Switching to hydrogen instead of natural gas will probably require people to have new boilers (as well as burners for their gas cookers), but that should work out a lot cheaper than installing ground-based heat pumps in most properties.

          • Bayard

            “Having said that, the land area suitable for biofuel crops could possibly be a constraint on this.”

            I’d say definitely. Much better to have mirror arrays in sunny places generating electricity, thus avoiding all the problems of shortage of rare materials that face wind and solar PV.

          • Dan Gleeballs

            Bayard is a bit confused when he claims 50% gas supplied through gas mains, prior to methane, was hydrogen. It wasn’t, it was ‘coal gas’. Coal gas, literally a by product of coke manufacture, comprises hydrogen, methane, carbon monoxide and sulphur, it wasn’t simply hydrogen. Town gas is just another name for coal gas, there was never any 50% supply of hydrogen.

          • Dawg

            Dan Gleeballs, I don’t think Bayard was suggesting “50% supply of hydrogen”: i.e. that pure hydrogen was supplied 50% of the time, or to 50% of the consumers. Before 1967, virtually all the gas supplied in the UK was coal gas (or “town gas”), and the typical composition of coal gas is 50% hydrogen. That’s the most obvious interpretation of the claim.

            The feasibility of adapting the home gas network for hydrogen was explored in a 2013 study: Conversion of the UK gas system to transport hydrogen, by Paul Dodds and Stéphanie Demoullin. They concluded that considerable investment would be needed on the part of the UK government for certain adaptations (e.g. ensuring the joints between polyethylene pipes are strengthened, and replacing high-strength steel with softer steel). Blending hydrogen with methane in similar proportions to coal gas, as Bayard suggested, could lower the financial barrier – so it seems quite sensible to me.

        • Lapsed Agnostic

          Thanks for your reply Bayard. Presumably these synthetic hydrocarbon-based fuels that constitute the future can be made from carbon dioxide in the air and green hydrogen that’s been produced from water by electrolysis using electricity from renewable sources – in which case you CAN say that fossil fuels can be replaced by wind and solar energy.

          • Bayard

            That’s one way. I believe the pilot plant is being powered by hydroelectricity. I don’t know if making hydrogen is the first step.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Bayard. Surely it would be easier to make these synthetic fuels from biofuels such as biodiesel, as the plants from which you obtain them will have done most of the work required in reducing carbon dioxide to hydrocarbons for you? Having said that, the land area suitable for biofuel crops could possibly be a constraint on this.

      • Natasha

        At last! Finally Lapsed Agnostic agrees that low energy density solar and wind energy flow harvesting machines NEED high energy density liquid hydrocarbons to power machinery to mine and refine (i.e. process heat that electricity CAN’T provide) ALL the raw materials, and heavy transport (not battery powered skate boards but 20 ton trucks and earth movers) to build, connect to the grid, maintain and replace wind & solar farms every 25 years! Hurray 🙂

        [ — SNIP– ]

        [ Mod: This branch of the conversation has been veering off-topic and was distracting from the main political issues identified in the article. It has been moved to the discussion forum, under the title ‘The Decline of Fossil Fuels and Limits of Renewable Energy‘. ]

  • DunGroanin

    Hansard starts with ‘Motion to take Note’ and ends with ‘Motion Agreed’.

    What was achieved by that debate?

    Kerr sounds like one of the usual high functioning psychopaths of the sort that are recruited at an early age to be the CEO/COO of the now daily dying Imperium. Just like Rhodes was. He is a creature of the City not of the Nation. Such people are supra-nationalist and can occupy any number of high offices in any nation state they choose.
    They lurk in the Lords as backstops to protect the City’s rights.
    They will ensure that it becomes a ‘Freeport’ and be independent of any oversight by Parliament.

    As for these claiming to come from whichever country, is there any proof that they actually do come from there? Do we just accept they are Iranian for example?
    I don’t doubt they are in need of asylum.
    Anyway, most migrants arrive not by boat or train illegally risking their lives. Most do with a passport and a airline ticket as tourists no doubt. Are numbers even collected of how many such visitors come and whether they return a week or two later as they are supposed to?
    It’s these unlucky enough not to be able to get any such passports who are risking it all to get here and make a life. What kind of life?

    Since BrexShit got rid of many Eastern Europeans our NHS and home care workers companies have struggled , I see many more migrants who obviously are recent arrivals because of their lack of language fluency who are now trying to look after these in the care homes in my neighbourhood. They work for private companies so I expect there is very little actual oversight. Mostly being trained on the job by someone else who has also not long arrived.

    We are just importing more low paid arse wipers because the Tory government has still not delivered the Social Care package promised in the Bozo December stitch-up general election, never mind any of the 40 new hospitals.
    It’s is now a lot worse – the Stroke ward at a local hospital which was of the highest quality a dozen years ago when my father was in need has disappeared – the aged GP who we all loved and trusted recently had a stroke was left at the same hospital unattended for 7 hours and then put on a general ward without any of the quick stroke assessments and interventions, dehydrated because there are not enough nurses and doctors.

    What a total disaster of the NHS and these who gave their whole lives working in it. As we lockstep into the Medical Industrial Complex that is bigger than the Military one – $10 trillion a year looking to double with all sorts of dubious treatments for children throughout their lives … it is diabolical.

    What’s the Great Knight Dope’s response to all of the above? He admits he is a LIAR, as he confirmed a few days ago when asked about his promise to nationalise – claiming he was being ‘pragmatic’ when he fooled the Labour membership into voting for him.

    It’s as simple as that. We are living in a coup state, which is fully a fascist one, along with the Collective Waste against the rest of the world, whilst our overlords create whole new divisive pseudo beliefs for us and instigate wars and chaos in places that causes more migrants to take risks with their lives to come here.

    Yup we really need these migrants and Ukrainians to come wipe our arses too, because they have no choice but to work for very low pay, but only if we pay through the nose to the Kaiser Permanantes subsidiaries with medical insurance premiums or end up bankrupting ourselves as we are Reset.

    Liz ‘effing’ Truss, Sunak or Starmzy makes no difference we might as well have ‘elensky!

    • Bayard

      “claiming he was being ‘pragmatic’ when he fooled the Labour membership into voting for him.”

      These days, lying is “being pragmatic”: “Can I fool them with a lie? Yes. Do I care about lying? Hell no, I’m a politician and before that I was a lawyer. Does anyone else care? No-one who matters. What’s not to like?”

  • Laguerre

    “the top four countries they come from are Iran, Iraq, Sudan and Syria”

    Apart from the Sudanese – who are mainly from South Sudan, that hellhole of a country created by the West just in order to destroy yet another Arab power – the other three (Iran, Iraq and Syria) are very specific populations, i.e. the Kurds of those countries. I have to say that I am not very clear why those Kurds are fleeing. In Iraq, they are not being persecuted, and they have a lovely autonomous region to live in where the Baghdad government has a very minimal role. In Iran, there’s no persecution of Kurds that I know of. In Syria, they’re under the protection of the good ol’ US of A, are they not? I am really stumped as to why it is that they are fleeing in such numbers. It is a major question that should be investigated, if it is in fact the case that those are three of the four top countries.

    • Jimmeh

      > the other three (Iran, Iraq and Syria) are very specific populations, i.e. the Kurds of those countries.

      The Kurds have several claims on the UK specifically. In dividing the Middle East, Churchill decided that the land of the Kurds should be divided between Turkey, Iran, Syria and Iraq. Each of those countries has a consistent history of persecuting Kurds. NATO betrayed the Kurdish armed forces in Syria when Turkey attacked them from behind. We owe the Kurds a break.

      • Laguerre

        “NATO betrayed the Kurdish armed forces in Syria when Turkey attacked them from behind.”

        That’s a nonsense interpretation. The Americans imposed themselves on the Syrian Kurds, when their leadership was ready to make a deal with Asad, supposedly with the intention of defending them against Da’ish, but actually in pursuit of the same policy as followed in Iraq, of attempting to divide and conquer an Arab power. The refugees are the consequence of that American policy, which as usual with anything from Washington, was poorly thought out. The Kurds have their “freedom”, though not as a sovereign state, have been treated very well, but are still unsatisfied. The question is why. Nobody else in the region has it better.

        • Jimmeh

          > The Americans imposed themselves on the Syrian Kurds

          The USA (and the Brits) took advantage of the Syrian Kurds when it suited them. But the Kurds are one people, divided by borders drawn by the British; the Turks have treated the Kurds as a rebellious foreign entity, since long before the Syrian conflict. They are treated as an enemy by everyone – Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

          It’s unsurprising that a lot of Kurds have become refugees.

          • Laguerre

            “But the Kurds are one people, “

            The Kurds are like one another to the extent that the two main Kurdish dialects, Kurmanji and Sorani, are mutually completely incomprehensible, let alone the territory the Kurds claim in Kirghizstan (yes really. Even I was shocked by that claim). But in any case, the main point is that the Kurds in Syria and Iraq have been extremely well treated in the recent wars – far, far, better than their immediate regional neighbours. And from Iran there is no news of persecution. So it’s hard to understand what this is all about. Of course I quite understand you only read one-sided propaganda telling you about poor suffering Kurds, when in fact, apart from Turkey, they’re doing just fine. Nobody has a right to be treated better than the others around them, but that’s what the Kurds want.
            I do agree about Turkey, though. Erdogan is obsessed with the “danger” of the Kurds. I had a student from Turkey who was thrown out of her post for being Kurdish, and was 6 years unemployed, until she just got a new post a couple of months ago. I’m crossing my fingers for her.

  • Republicofscotland

    “He more or less told me that I wasn’t needed, explaining in a conspiratorial whisper “we’ve got John Kerr”.”

    Both Kerr and Robertson are/were Konigswinter speakers, that’s probably where the contact began.

  • dearieme

    “found by the British state to be genuine refugees seeking asylum”: Then the British State is lying.

    They are in France so they’ve already found asylum. They are now shopping around among welfare states. In their shoes I’d do the same but that wouldn’t make me a genuine asylum-seeker.

    • Nigel Quinn


      Craig Murray, why are you ignoring this obvious fact?

      The current government is bad, but that doesn’t mean that all its positions are wrong.

      • craig Post author

        Because I see no need to pander to racists, and because there is nothing in the Refugee Convention that states refugees must seek asylum in the first safe country they transit. It’s a myth beloved of racists.

        • yesindyref2

          Indeed, but there’s also nothing in A31 that says the country they want to transit to has to take them without prior agreement, which the original country should help them to try to get.

          Basically speaking it’s a sad game of pass the parcel.

        • Nigel Quinn

          Calling dearieme a “racist” has no justification whatsoever, and therefore damages your reputation rather than dearieme’s.

          • Tatyana

            Mr. Murray’s signature style is to express his ideas in a provocative way. It would probably be more accurate to say that his convictions are manifested at moments that may surprise his readers.
            I’d like to see his reflections on racism presented in the form of a lecture, with theses, arguments and analysis of the current state. This would certainly be the most enlightening read on the subject, because Mr. Murray has enough breadth of mind to not reduce racism to white-black relations in the US (as Robin DiAngelo did), just as he does not reduce Nazism to anti-Semitism (that is practiced and peddled now by the defenders of the Ukrainian regime).

    • Mighty Drunken

      “They are in France so they’ve already found asylum”

      Incorrect, if they had found asylum with France they could not seek it elsewhere. (Unless they are using the Dublin Regulation to seek asylum in the EU; the UK is no longer in the EU).

      “They are now shopping around among welfare states”

      If that were the case they would stay in France and seek out Germany.


      “wouldn’t make me a genuine asylum-seeker”

      Please read the article.

      Just maybe, Syria, Sudan, Iran and Iraq persecute some populations and the asylum seekers think the UK is a good place to go. Despite being a smallish country we are well known. We have influenced all 4 countries and we speak English, unlike most of Europe.

      • Bayard

        ““They are in France so they’ve already found asylum”

        Incorrect, if they had found asylum with France they could not seek it elsewhere. (Unless they are using the Dublin Regulation to seek asylum in the EU; the UK is no longer in the EU).”

        Yes, technically, they have not found asylum in France unless they have sought asylum in France. However, speaking more generally, the purpose of asylum seekers is to flee persecution in their home country. This they have achieved as soon as they have left the persecuting country. As far as safety from persecution is concerned, all EU countries are pretty well equal, therefore the only thing that militates against asylum-seekers seeking asylum in the first country they come to is that it would be an unfair burden on that country. That is why there should be international cooperation in such matters.

        “Just maybe, Syria, Sudan, Iran and Iraq persecute some populations and the asylum seekers think the UK is a good place to go.”

        Obviously, genuine asylum seekers have to end up somewhere and, obviously, it would be good if they ended up in a country of their own choice, but their purpose is to escape persecution and they have achieved that wherever they end up that isn’t going to persecute them.

        • Jimmeh

          > However, speaking more generally, the purpose of asylum seekers is to flee persecution in their home country. This they have achieved as soon as they have left the persecuting country.

          Speaking generally, the purpose of asylum seekers is to seek asylum. You have *not* achieved anything remotely like asylum, if you have reached e.g. Lesbos and wound up interred in a barbed-wire encampment.

          It’s a matter for the asylum seeker to decide when they have found a place where they feel able to seek asylum. It’s not for you to define their goals for them.

          Of course, I appreciate that you’d prefer that they not seek it *here*. So you’re keen on the idea that they must seek asylum in the first country they arrive in. But that is bogus; there’s no such rule. It’s a convenient notion however, for those who would like to “send them back”. And of course, if you want to seek asylum in the UK without passing through any other country, you need a private yacht (we’re landlocked, and we hardly ever grant asylum to applicants in other countries – hostile environment and all that).

          • Bayard

            “Speaking generally, the purpose of asylum seekers is to seek asylum. “

            That ignores the reason why they are seeking asylum.

            “It’s a matter for the asylum seeker to decide when they have found a place where they feel able to seek asylum.”

            Are you suggesting that everyone is entitled to wander round the world until they find somewhere that they like? If not, what make asylum seekers superior to everyone else? Someone is an asylum seeker because they are fleeing persecution in their home country. Asylum is anywhere where they are no longer persecuted. Yes, the asylum seeker might prefer to seek asylum in the UK and common justice says that the UK should take a share of those seeking asylum, but that preference has nothing to do with the reasons why they left their home, what qualified them to be classed as asylum seekers in the first place, in exactly the same way as it shouldn’t disqualify them. “You can only be classed as an asylum seeker if you are prepared to seek asylum in Ireland” – how wrong does that sound?

            “Of course, I appreciate that you’d prefer that they not seek it *here*.”

            Well, you appreciate wrong because I don’t. Try rereading my comment without your preconceived ideas.

            “So you’re keen on the idea that they must seek asylum in the first country they arrive in. “

            Where did I say that?

            “So you’re keen on the idea that they must seek asylum in the first country they arrive in.”


            “And of course, if you want to seek asylum in the UK without passing through any other country, you need a private yacht (we’re landlocked, and we hardly ever grant asylum to applicants in other countries – hostile environment and all that).”

            As Craig points out, that’s a fault with the system. The answer is to make it unnecessary to pass through other countries in order to seek asylum in the UK, rather than have a system of trial by ordeal, which is what we have now. We should be granting asylum on the basis that asylum is needed, not on the basis that the asylum seekers are here and so we have to do something with them.

  • np

    I’m afraid I don’t have any time for these lords and ladies. The time has long passed for polite disagreement.

    We are ruled by gangsters. They are killing people, at home and around the world.

    In a rational universe, it would be a criminal offence to belong to a group like the UK Conservative party.

  • yesindyref2

    John Kerr was OK around the time of the first ref, in that he believed in sensible negotiation, helping Scotland stay / re-enter the EU in as short a time as possible and, by implication, fostering good relations. It’s a stance he took after the Ref when he said the Lords should send a note of congratulations to Sturgeon for instance.

    The Lords are actually more interesting and, dare I say, more wise and mature, than the Commons. Even Lang isn’t the Langer he used to be.

  • Mighty Drunken

    The right has ditched the idea of using facts, preferring psychology. Unfortunately facts are still facts and will bite you later, especially climate change. So I am not surprised that someone like Lord Kerr would disagree with the government. Also the Establishment probably quite likes immigration considering the UK’s demographics.
    With an ageing population we have 3 choices.

    1. Accept a decline in living standards.
    2. Invite younger workers into the country.
    3. Improve automation and efficiency to make up for the extra dependents.

    Our neo-liberal based politics, doesn’t have the mechanisms to invest in the future to achieve 3.

    • PhilM

      You forgot:
      4. Make everyone work until they drop dead from exhaustion.
      5. Encourage the vulnerable to kill themselves by stopping any social support and making their lives unbearable.

    • Bayard

      “With an ageing population we have 3 choices.
      1. Accept a decline in living standards.”

      I think that should be “Impose a decline of living standards”, so that the rich stay rich and the poor become poorer. The mass of the population don’t have the choice whether to accept it or not, short of rioting.

    • Squeeth

      Oh that old (geddit?) canard, there are more retired people (working class retired people) than in 1945 but modern workers are about three times as productive as 1945 workers. The burden of paying the older generation’s costs (as they paid ours when they were working) has lessened.

      • MrShigemitsu

        The burden is not one of “paying” the older generations’ costs; taxes don’t fund spending, and the U.K. govt is not financially constrained, it’s resource constrained.
        So the financial cost isn’t the burden.

        The burden, as ever, is on the working generations who not only have to produce the goods and services that they need for themselves, but also those for the younger and older, non-working generations’ requirements.

        Of course investment in automation to improve productivity by the working generations would be the sensible answer, but that requires long-term thinking and financial commitment to the greater public good on the part of government and business – so not much chance of that.

        • Squeeth

          It is working well to keep rich bastards like pigs in shite. The financial problems in this country are ones of distribution not quantity.

          • MrShigemitsu

            Yes ofc, but money *alone* won’t help.

            The issue is that the middle 18 > 66/68 generation always has to work to produce and supply *all* the real goods and services not only for themselves, but for the under 18s and over 66/68s as well.

            You can give everyone as much or as little money as you like, or tax them as much or as little as you like, but it’s *real resources* that is always the constraint, and we and other nations in a similar predicament will need to think smart about how to maximise the availability of them. Constant austerity does the opposite; it minimises the potential for non-inflationary public spending.

            Money is most definitely necessary, but is not sufficient. There needs to be longterm thought and planning put into how to maximise our real resources, and increase the capacity and productivity of the real economy so that it can absorb additional spending without inflation, but that’s been absent for decades.

  • Sam

    The difference between Lord Kerr and Truss/Patel etc., is not just their political bent but a matter of intelligence and basic education.

    For instance, I’m quite confident Kerr could find Lithuania on a map and knows exactly where Rostov and Voronezh are.

      • Tatyana

        The original conversation was about the Voronezh and Rostov regions. Since only Rostov-on-Don is the regional center, the answer to your question is obvious.
        Another Russian city, Rostov, belongs to the Yaroslavl region. This is an ancient city with an original name, and therefore, as you may have noticed, it does not contain specifying words of geographical location ‘on the Don River’.
        The same principle of formation of new names for new objects, as in the case of the Crimean Tatars. The original Tatars in the name of the nation do not have any clarifying words. They are simply Tatars and live in Tatarstan.

  • Tatyana

    Thank you, Mr. Murray.
    An excellent speech by Lord Kerr. Formulated neutrally at first glance, but nevertheless the author’s attitude to what is happening is easy to catch.

    When referring to people, he uses the titles Noble Lord / Lady, as if hinting that a high title implies a prosperous, secure existence. This emotionally contrasts very much with the words:
    refugee, migrant, asylum seekers, patrol, danger, peril on the sea, people smugglers, mourn yesterday’s dead, cruelty.
    Interesting that among emotionally appealing words, Ms Patel is not honored with one, not even a mention of her name, only the function she performs for society.

    If it occurred to me to artistically depict such a speech by Lord Kerr, then perhaps I would depict Prometheus speaking before the gods of Olympus in defense of mankind.

    • MrShigemitsu

      These are simply conventions at Westminster.

      They are addressed, or referred to, as ‘Noble Lords’ etc in the House of Lords; but they’re called my Honourable Friend, the Honourable Member/Lady/Gentleman , my Right Honourable Friend, etc (depending on which side you’re addressing, or if they have Privy Council membership) in the House of Commons.

      In would not have been possible for Lord Kerr to have elevated Home Secretary Priti Patel to equal status with his noble Peers, because she sits in the House of Commons.

      Of course the reality is not a single last one of them are either honourable, or noble, but that’s another story!

      • Tatyana

        I know these are conventions, nevertheless, in this “speech picture” the contrast remains palpable and absolutely clearly shows the place for each person mentioned in the speech. The mere fact that inequality is enshrined in traditional speech does not make it any better.

        We here adopted the appeal “comrade”, which made it ridiculous when addressing a woman 🙂
        Then someone introduced the age-old address господин and I still can’t get used to it, it literally means ‘master’. It seems to me that in civilian areas there is no need for words implying inequality. I think that this would only be suitable for hierarchical structures such as the army. Or, maybe, for class societies, if they want to keep the distance between classes for as long as possible.

        • Bayard

          “We here adopted the appeal “comrade”, which made it ridiculous when addressing a woman”

          I think that loses something in translation. In English “comrade” doesn’t imply a person of either sex.

          • Tatyana

            Hehehe, ? proper linguistic word is ‘gender’, grammar category to reflect if we are talking about smth. feminine, smth. masculine or inanimate.
            Russian for ‘comrade’ has only masculine form, no feminitives.
            The sense of the word is the same as in English, and I dare say it does not wholly describe the spectrum of possible male-female interactions. Comrade can be compared to Sister used in monastery.

          • Bayard

            “Hehehe, ? proper linguistic word is ‘gender’, grammar category to reflect if we are talking about smth. feminine, smth. masculine or inanimate.”

            This may be getting a bit OT, but strictly speaking, persons have a sex and words have a gender. Yes I know that the mealy-mouthed Americans have promoted the use of the word “gender” where they mean the word “sex” and English is how she is spoke, so it is hard to say which is the correct usage. The problem of using “gender” for “sex” comes in languages where the two are separate, like in French where a person who is a sentinel can be of the male sex, but the noun referring to them is of the female gender, “la sentinelle”.

    • Jimmeh

      > When referring to people, he uses the titles Noble Lord


      That’s how people conduct themselves in the Lords. I favour abolition of the HoL, but I appreciate the civilised way the Lords conducts its business.

      These conventions on how MPs should address one-another are meant to take the sting out of discussions that would otherwise risk becoming angry and fractious. Similar rules apply in the HoC, but are honoured more in the breach; the Speaker of the Commons is always telling people off for disrespecting the rules. The Speaker of the Lords, much less so.

      • Tatyana

        Well, yes, human beings are very sensitive to the fact that they are personally treated with due respect. It would be good to recruit only those who are not easy to offend in important state bodies. As Herr Scholz, he is an excellent example of strong nerves. The Ukrainian ambassador to Germany called him “offended liver sausage” and Mr. Scholz simply pretended that this was normal in diplomatic practice. Isn’t it wonderful? I believe that the people of Germany have chosen an excellent chancellor. Offended sausage in a steel casing.

  • john

    His Lordship’s Bilderberg membership is PRECISELY the background of the globalists who are promoting uncontrolled immigration of Africans and Asians into Europe and the US. I have to ask why Craig does not see this?
    Based on my experiences living in Tunisia and Senegal, the young men and women are not trying to escape tyranny, they have a fervent desire to improve their standard of living.
    And in Norway I have met young men from Sudan, whose parents funded their journey to the human traffickers in Libyan ports, again, trying to give their kids possibilities for a more prosperous life in Europe.
    As the Hungarian Foreign Minister queries in this interview with Amanpour of the CNN, how many safe countries have these illegal immigrants crossed before they reach our borders?

    • MrShigemitsu

      So it’s all right for you to go and live and work in other countries, such as Tunisia and Senegal, to further your career and life opportunities, but not the other way around?

      Got it.

      • john

        I worked in those countries as a contract engineer where none of the locals were qualified to do my job. Believe me the authorities wouldn’t have allowed me in otherwise.
        The illegal immigrants who come into Europe by contrast are competing with unqualified locals, thereby eroding their bargaining power.

    • Bayard

      Although we prefer the organisations we dislike to be monolithic (every one in them is evil) and consistent (no-one in them ever does good), as it saves an awful lot of mental effort (four legs good, two legs bad), life, unfortunately, is not like that.

      • john

        Bayard, perhaps you could illustrate your statement with a real life example in the context of illegal immigration into Europe/US?

        • Bayard

          Sorry, I couldn’t, because my comment is not about immigration, it’s about Lord Kerr and your own comment is the illustration that you seek.

  • Crispa

    I remember seeing the video of Kerr’s speech at the time and thought it was a candle in the night, but which would easily burn itself out not least because it was was delivered in the arcane turgidity of that elephants’ graveyard for politicians the House of Lords.
    I do not think the debate taken as a whole, which was based on the narrow motion of boat crossings and by coincidence the day after a Channel tragedy, could be seen as evidence of the drift to the right becoming a surge, though it does show a totally Anglo-centric, unipolar world perspective, on issues of immigration, whether they come from left, centre or right of the UK political spectrum.
    I noted that the few peers who attended the debate – the usual suspects for this kind if thing – congratulated themselves on the opportunity to have it. But if that arch Labour Brexiteer (Baroness) Kate Hoey, who had tabled it thought in her summing up that in having it she was showing we the public how seriously the worthy peers were taking our concerns about immigration, she was just reminding us how anachronistic the House of Lords is.

  • mark golding

    Britain is tellingly a one party system bordering on or effectively a total autocracy. where human commandants like Lord Lilley outline plans to “close down the something for nothing society” in a land of “chattering classes.” Thus it is a prayer to pick up the scorn by John Kerr to this Nazi henchman far right climate change reviler.

  • Jay

    ‘Liz Truss … said the civil service was “woke” and had “creeping antisemitism”‘

    If full-blown 30s-style fascism were to consume Britain I’d love to know whether Jewish people genuinely believe, in their heart of hearts, that they would be protected by people like Liz Truss and other RW / ‘centrist’ antisemitism witchfinders of today.

  • gregor

    When will the public wake-up…

    Nicola Sturgeon (17/08/2022):

    “Hurling abuse at journalists is never acceptable. Their job is vital to our democracy & it is to report & scrutinise, not support any viewpoint…”


    World Economic Forum: Forum Members:

    “Forum Members are fully integrated into the World Economic Forum vision…”:


    World Economic Forum: People: Nicola Sturgeon:


    World Economic Forum: People: Liz Truss:


    World Economic Forum: People: Rishi Sunak:


    World Economic Forum: Organizations: Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom:


    World Economic Forum: Agenda Contributor: Frederick Kempe: President and CEO, Atlantic Council:


    World Economic Forum: Partners: Royal Dutch Shell:


    World Economic Forum: People: Danny Cohen: Head of Television, BBC News:


    World Economic Forum: People: Tim Davie: Director-General, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC):


    World Economic Forum: People: Melanie Dawes: Chief Executive, Office of Communications (Ofcom):


    • john

      A propos…I see Herr Schwab, having failed to cut the mustard with “COVID 19 – The Great Reset”, has released a sequel called “The Great Narrative”. With contributors which include Niall Ferguson. Seriously.

      Presumably Ms Krankie will ensure that journalists are empowered “to report & scrutinise” said narrative, like she did with the COVID 19 fiasco.

      • Jane Morrison

        The single greatest threat to democratic institutions which has been nibbling away for decades and now it’s all crashing down and people are unable to comprehend the magnitude and complexity and so decide to turn a blind eye and comply.. The farmers in Holland are taking a mighty stand as did the trucker convoy in Canada… The media blackout is revealing… It’s the big story that very few are writing about intelligently.

  • Jane Morrison

    [ MOD: Thank you. Replies do veer off topic, but we do encourage initial replies to be on point.

    You are entitled to write on any subject of your choosing (within reason!) in the forums, or participate in existing topics like this one:


    If you don’t like that forum topic, please start another ]

    Ok.. I understand your point, but many posts appear which aren’t directly related to the topic which you post about… Perhaps you can write an article about this very serious threat to our democratic institutions.. As terrible as they are, it’ll be worse when an unelected centralised government is in total control.

  • Fred Dagg

    As someone who fearlessly documents racism wherever it occurs, I am worried that you may have overlooked a case closer to home in an example of failing to see the trees for the wood. I refer of course to the fact that examples of “racist” trees have been found in America and urge that the specimens (primarily cypress by the look of it) in your garden be “audited” for their “political correctness”. One can never be too careful.

    • Courtenay Francis Raymond Barnett


      ” in your garden be “audited” for their “political correctness”. One can never be too careful.”

      Does racism exist – or doesn’t it – or is it only in existence in the cypress trees?

      ” (primarily cypress by the look of it) in your garden”

      • Dom

        Fred’s decided racism is all made up or else is something it’s too ridiculous for its victims to even mention. He believes he’s out-thought Craig Murray on the issue.

    • Dawg

      The anti-woke story of the “racist trees” did the rounds of rabid right-wing blogs in 2017, and also appeared in the Daily Mail. The city council in Palm Springs, California, decided to remove a line of trees that were, according to lore, planted to shield a golf course from a residential area mostly occupied by black Americans. Those were Tamarisk trees, which are deceptively similar to Cypress in appearance, though they aren’t in the same genus.

      Fred seems to have surveilled the trees in Craig’s garden, which he believes to be Cypress, and he ends with “One can never be too careful”. Does anyone detect some sinister overtones there?

  • john

    Sweden has had loosely regulated immigration from Asia and Africa for the past 10-15 years, due to liberal ideologues in the government, and proponents such as Barbara Lerner Spectre and her movement.


    Now with elections looming in September, all three parties are neck and neck, with all three favouring draconian policing of the immigrant communities, including warrantless searches by police, (i.e. without demonstrating suspicion of criminality), of people, their cars and their homes. Public support for such tyrannical measures has developed due to the orgies of violence perpetrated by the immigrants.


  • Shatnersrug

    The establishment is split into two groups, the liberal Globalists and the Conservative protectionists, the battle at the heart of these powers has been there since the beginnings of capitalism.

    I don’t think the support of immigration is in anyway leftwing in the sense that it’s in support of the people against the establishment; I do think it’s at the heart of liberalism, which reached its zenith at the end of the 20th century and is very much in decline at the moment.

    Yes, this country is heading towards fascism at an alarming rate, the hyperinflation were facing is yet another indicator of what might come.

    Today I find myself with knowledge I’d rather not have, two questions used to bother me about the Weimar: 1) How did they let Hitler happen?
    And 2) more technically, how did hyperinflation get so out of hand?

    Well, now I know the answers to both these questions and neither have much to do with Keynesianism or the profligate printing of money.

    This country stands on the brink of something very dark. I know I’ve been saying this on this blog since George Osbourne started his foolish austerity drive, but all the way down the line I’ve been proved right; I hope to god my predictions don’t continue to be proved right, but I suspect now there is little chance that they won’t be. Britain was once a ‘great’ empire. Its decline into authoritarianism and ultimate collapse are, it would seem, unavoidable.

    • Courtenay Francis Raymond Barnett


      “Well, now I know the answers to both these questions and neither have much to do with Keynesianism or the profligate printing of money.”

      Well, if there is no Keynesian solution (or even – delay strategy available). Please specify your solutions as regards:-

      1. The level of inflation – a solution?
      2. The need for the challenge of an ageing population which does not have the younger generation with the right skill sets to continue and advance to the next economic level? A solution?
      3. The acceptance for the need of more skilled immigration ( a la Canada) into the UK to propel and revitalise the UK economy. A solution?

      But – who the hell am I to pose these practical questions?

      • Shatnersrug

        Courtney, I’m sorry maybe I didn’t make myself clear, what I meant is that the printing of money is always blamed for the hyperinflation and rise of fascism.

        I’ve always strongly doubted it was so simple as that, and the suppression of MMT that started in the 70s was more about control than ‘sensible’ monetary policy

        Money printing did not cause the hyperinflation of the 1970s nor did it create the hyperinflation of the Weimar, in both cases it was a response to.

        I’m an awful old socialist that doesn’t believe in national borders of any type I believe every person has the right to live wherever they choose.

        I do not know how to solve the problems of the free market, however MMT and regulation seem to be the best shot.

        True socialism would not involve any type of money; however the mindset needed to sustain that type of existence is well beyond most people’s (even my) conception

        My point was that in my view Hitler and fascism in general is a product of the free market: it suits the financial powers much more than democracy or dare I say communism, because it isolates and contains the anger generated in a country that has been the victim of the speculative markets.

        • Bayard

          “I do not know how to solve the problems of the free market, however MMT and regulation seem to be the best shot.”

          Most of what are put forward as the problems of the free market aren’t, because the market isn’t free. Nobody wants a free market, everyone wants a market rigged in their favour. What is called the “free market” in the West is a market rigged in favour of the rich and powerful. It’s the rigging that causes the problems, that and the decline of moral standards, which is a completely separate problem from those of capitalism, socialism or any other ism you might care to name.. Regulation is not the answer, because the regulators themselves are drawn from the same humanity, of whose crooked timber nothing straight was ever made, as the regulated.

          • Shatnersrug

            There’s no such thing as a free market, it’s a stupid childish idea that doesn’t even support itself ideologically. If a market is left truly free, unregulated – that means no laws then the biggest players will rig the market in their favour, if there are no laws then they can do this whichever way they see fit, even murdering the competition. To quote Orwell “…the problem with competition is that ultimately someone wins the damned thing” then you end up with monopoly, a corporate monopoly is a type of fascist government with its own summary laws, ie no free market.

            Anyone that claims that the free market is the answer to any of the world’s problems is either incapable of thinking things through or a person “whose salary is dependent on them not understanding it” to quote some other dead guy.

          • Bayard

            “If a market is left truly free, unregulated – that means no laws”

            No it doesn’t. Not having regulation of the market doesn’t mean that there would be no law against murder, as you claim. The problem with your point of view, and that of many others when talking about free markets, is that it fails to distinguish between economics and ethics.. The ten commandments have nothing to say about market regulation, but they are pretty definite on the subject of murder. Indeed the Bible as a whole is pretty scanty on market regulation, but very strong on morals and ethics.

            “Anyone that claims that the free market is the answer to any of the world’s problems is either incapable of thinking things through”

            It’s more the case that anyone that claims that regulation is the answer to any of the world’s problems is incapable of thinking things through. The biggest players will always try to rig the market in their favour, and one of the easiest ways to do this is to get the regulators on their side. In any case, the free market will always be a theoretical construct because the forces to rig it are so strong that you never actually have one.

          • Carl

            Virtually everything needs to be regulated — housing, health, employment, wages, education, public utilities, banking .. Otherwise societies degenerate into neoliberal Thatcherite dystopias like 21st century Britain.

          • Bayard

            “Virtually everything needs to be regulated”

            and from which race of superhumans are you going to recruit the regulators, or are you going to pick them from the same common mass of humanity that has allowed us to degenerate into neoliberal Thatcherite dystopias like 21st century Britain? Who is going to do the recruiting, the same leaders who have led us into that dystopia?
            Regulation only works when you have moral principles amongst the general population from which they are drawn, and if you have those moral principles, you don’t need regulation.

    • Johnny Conspiranoid

      “How did they let Hitler happen?”

      Perhaps Hitler was promoted by western capital, particularly US capital, to march on Moscow and remove the communist government.

      • Shatnersrug

        I don’t think there was any perhaps about it: Hitler was thought by the money markets to be a sensible and much needed firm hand after the follies of the Weimar. He suppressed Union power and prevented the country from becoming allied with the world communism (at least in the early stages).

        Now we know MI6 funded Mussolini’s fascist newspaper, the chances of Hitler not receiving some kind of blessing through the British establishment (not least the king and Oswald Mosley) are extremely unlikely.

        • Squeeth

          Hitler became necessary in Germany because it was a democracy, unlike the western slave empires of Britain, France and the USA. Not being democracies they didn’t need to overcome a democratic legislature which kept refusing to pass laws and support governments sticking the working class with the bill for the Wall St Crash.

      • Bayard

        A few months ago, Craig illustrated how the UK and Germany together supported the Finns against the Russians before there was an Orwellian about turn when we went to war with the Germans.

  • Johnny Conspiranoid

    People are fleeing poor countries where they are persecuted. It suits the purpose of the western empire to keep these places poor, and to do that the population needs to be persecuted.

  • Paul Greenwood

    It matters not.
    Trust in this political system of interrelated insiders has collapsed totally.
    Voters simply do not believe they are represented……….they see themselves as farmyard animals corralled and hectored by wranglers taking orders from oligarchs

    The 1970s look like the last time British Governments were response to British voters – just as Neville Chamberlain was the last British Prime Minister not beholden to the United States, his successor having delivered the country, its overseas assets, technological base, and foreign policy to a nation which created the amazing feat of being the first Colony to colonise its mother country

  • Allan Howard

    I’m not familiar with John Kerr, but one thing’s for certain….. there are dark, shadowy fascist forces at work at the heart of the British Establishment. The following piece by Matt Kennard on Declassified UK is from December 2019:

    How the UK military and intelligence establishment is working to stop Jeremy Corbyn becoming prime minister
    by Matt Kennard, Daily Maverick, 4 Dec 2019

    Officials in the UK military and intelligence establishment have been sources for at least 34 major national media stories that cast Jeremy Corbyn as a danger to British security, new research shows.

    The stories — which quote former or current members of the army, navy and special forces, as well as MI5, MI6 and an ex-senior civil servant — have averaged one every six weeks since Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of the Labour Party in September 2015. There have, however, been significant spikes in frequency during the 2017 and 2019 general election campaigns.

    There is a strong suggestion that, for some stories, intelligence officials have themselves provided secret documents to journalists as part of what appears to be a campaign.

    Every story has been picked up across national print media, often setting the news agenda and chiming with statements from Conservative government ministers. Nearly every story appeared in four papers — The Daily Telegraph, The Times, the Daily Mail, or The Sun.

    Our research also found 440 articles in the UK press since September 2015 specifically mentioning Corbyn as a “threat to national security”.


    PS: And he was of course a threat to British Jews, and a threat to our way of life and all we love and cherish…….. He was in fact a threat to everyone and everything!

    • Goose

      More pertinent and pernicious is the daily interaction and social media manipulation agencies and NATO are increasingly getting involved in. It seems to contravene our professed western values and boasts about being ‘free and open’ societies,’ including free speech and expression and the various conventions and human rights obligations that enshrine all this. But the attitude seems to be: if China and Russia can do this, well, stuff our values, so can we.

      A former Twitter executive turned whistleblower, Peiter “Mudge” Zatko – a former security chief no less – has come forward in the last few days alleging intel agency operatives are employed at the insistence of various countries. With the full knowledge of the company’s board. maybe these previously hidden obligations plus numerous bot accounts are what spooked Elon Musk so much, idk? I don’t even use twitter to post, I merely read posts, but even with my limited interaction, the bot accounts are fairly obvious. I’m surprised any of these revelations, often highlighted by Craig and Jonathan Cook, have come as a shock to our MSM given stories like this:

      Twitter executive for Middle East is British Army ‘psyops’ soldier:


      Also, in related social media news; Priti Patel is once again threatening action over Meta’s roll out of end-to-end encryption across its entire platform of services. She doesn’t seem to understand how if you break encryption for one country you break it for everyone, due to the nature of end-to-end’s implementation and use of ephemeral protocols. It also suggests authorities are currently storing all encrypted traffic using a kind of ‘dragnet approach,’ maybe the concern is all that expensive storage capacity, processing capability will be underutilized as ephemeral protocols make mass decryption of bulk data impossible(?) – i.e. so you’ve got bulk collection for the sake of bulk collection – surveillance for the sake of surveillance?

      • Bayard

        “But the attitude seems to be: if China and Russia can do this, well, stuff our values, so can we.”

        Isn’t it equally likely that Russia and China have the same attitude? I don’t think there would be any prizes awarded for guessing which country started the process.

        • Goose

          The difference is, we make a virtue out of our society’s supposed open debate / discourse, rather than demanding total conformity with various official narratives.

          The fact that some in the west are urging the same sort of authoritarian controls China and Russia impose, suggests they’d be happier if the west looked a lot more like China and Russia? They seem to have lost sight of what they are supposed to be defending, and what makes the west different.

          • Bayard

            “The difference is, we make a virtue out of our society’s supposed open debate / discourse, rather than demanding total conformity with various official narratives.”

            Have you not noticed that it is the same people who are limiting the extent of open debate here in the West that are telling us that Russia and China have “authoritarian controls”? You wouldn’t trust these people to give you the correct time of day, not if you are sensible, so why should they be any more trustworthy about foreign countries, especially the enemies they designate for us? Our blog host is a good example of what happens to people who don’t conform to the official narrative here.

          • Goose

            This new Grayzone article illustrates the problem:


            The concerning thing in the US/UK is how the DoD and MoD are getting involved in policing dissent online, as if both countries have reached a point of democratic perfection and any and ALL threats to that system must be countered. Who voted for that, whose manifesto?

            How can our countries evolve politically – become better democracies – if these people are enforcing and locking in the status quo? Look at Google’s involvement with the DoD, use of AI and overly wide national security threat assessments, the US has always been national security obsessed, but now it’s just paranoid. Look how anti-imperialists and anti-capitalist voices are being silenced online, by various overreaching govt officials and Depts.

          • Bayard

            “How can our countries evolve politically – become better democracies”

            I think the word “better” could be usefully omitted there.

    • Carl

      The wholesale agreement among politicians and journalists that Britain’s most anti-racist politician is actually its most racist shows this is one of the most degenerate nations on the planet.

      • Goose

        They didn’t trust Corbyn with the ‘special relationship’ – The US would have simply refused to cooperate with a Corbyn administration; sharing of intel and defence related cooperation would have ceased. And that shows how the UK being beholden to the US has effectively nullified our democracy,… or certainly constrained the available choices on offer.

        Related: The Grayzone’s Aaron Maté claimed in a recent podcast that the CIA and MI6 seem to have found a novel way of avoiding democratic scrutiny in both countries, simply by cooperating – think of a Venn diagram and the intersection CIA MI6, both can cite the other’s need for operational secrecy according to Maté. Maté highlighted how the otherwise thorough United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence can be kept entirely in the dark eg. CIA/MI6 Syrian activities and operations relegated to special classified annex and thus not available to the oversight body.

        • Carl

          No fundamentally it is because they are all centrists or rightwingers. And it was another foreign country that inspired their smears and debasing of the public culture — their beloved little apartheid state, the one they are all proud friends of.

          The politicians and journalists themselves try and ennoble their actions by pretending they were concerned about the special relationship, national security or some other faux-patriotic nonsense. What they were actually concerned about were policies that threatened the whole neoliberal political-media consensus and their individual careers and interests, because they know they have no alternative policies remotely as popular.

          • mark golding

            These selfish neoliberal followers have no concern. no care, no TLC. no thought for the victims of social or political injustice, the ‘just expendables’ that can be socially exploited and deemed most susceptible to political influence and a disinformation that frames scandalous, untruths, heinous and shameful acts as ‘business as usual’ now ubiquitous in the USA and here in Britain where hear, see and speak rooted in Confucianism has come mute blind even forfeiting the ‘do’ [no evil].

            The fight for greater democratic accountability and more equitable distribution of power is nearly insurmountable, virtually overwhelming lest we take up arms.


        • Bramble

          I think plans for this current proxy war on Russia have been in place for years. It is obvious that Ukrainian defences were being built with NATO money and the Ukrainian army trained by NATO personnel etc. It just needed Biden as POTUS to get the go-ahead. They knew that Mr Corbyn would not back it (whatever his views on Mr Putin) and that therefore the Atlanticist elite would never allow him to be PM, or even a voice for making peace as leader of the Opposition.

          • Goose

            In talking, I’ve found many in the UK who sympathise with and indeed support Ukraine, also believe it was wrong and provocative to expand NATO all the way up to Russia’s borders. A sovereign decision solely for prospective members, the US, UK and Stoltenberg claim. But the US didn’t feel the same way about Cuba’s involvement with the then Soviet Union, over the stationing of missiles on Cuban soil.

            Mikhail Gorbachev was once feted in western capitals as a sensible voice, however, he’s now totally ignored in his belief that there should be at least one ‘neutral’ buffer country between Russia and NATO. The US could have easily offered Russia security guarantees and affirmed Ukraine won’t be joining NATO. But Biden and his administration seem to have had other plans with no desire to placate; indeed everything prior to the invasion was set to maximum provocation. As for Zelensky, little more than a puppet, moving as those offstage pull his strings.

          • Goose

            Also, as I’ve stated before, given this anecdotal evidence, I don’t think Europeans would have voted to expand NATO that far east had each country debated each accession, then voted in referendums. It was done over our heads, on the judgement of easily corruptible politicians. European voters would never have endorsed it.

            And no, current polling support for NATO membership isn’t the same as historic approval for its expansion, which we never got a say on.

          • Peter

            “I think plans for this current proxy war on Russia have been in place for years.”

            100%. It’s as plain as the nose on your face.

            One of the very best commentators on the US’s hegemonic, aggressive ‘adventurism’ in my view is Brian Berletic of ‘The New Atlas’ Youtube channel.

            He was live on The Duran’s channel earlier today explaining exactly that. Watch from 1.03.30:


  • nevermind

    I shall be standong outside Mary and Rishi’s hustings here in Norwich tonight, asking for a stop to Tory environmental fascism here in Norfolk. They are meeting at the Holiday Inn at the airport at 7pm and hopefully there’ll be a couple of hundred of us.
    I agree with Mark, waiting for Godot to act is a waste of time. Action now is the message.

    • Goose

      Even the media are becoming concerned. This from the Independent’s Blairite columnist, Sean O’Grady, on the would-be PM:

      Asked how she’d feel about pushing the [nuclear weapon] button, Liz Truss answered as if in a job interview for head of sales.

      UK politics is littered with these Swinson-esque lightweights. The only good thing about ‘dizzy Liz’ is the fact she’ll likely be a prayer answered for those in favour of Scottish independence.

      • tom welsh

        If Liz Truss is ever about to “press the nuclear button” (of course, there is no such thing) I suspect that she will be preempted by a visit from Mr Kindzhal or one of his relatives.

        To update the saying, “a conventional missile in time saves nine thermonuclear ones”.

  • Carl

    “Ever Further Right”

    It’s okay, “the fightback has begun” by all accounts because Emily Maitliss has accused the BBC of bias against centrists.

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