Sunday, 31 May 2009

Business as Usual + The Biggest, Dirtiest Porker in the Sty

It is not often I have occasion to quote The Beatles; especially not the White Album, even though I'm fond of bits of it. But one song has popped into my mind recently:

Have you seen the little piggies
Crawling in the dirt
And for all the little piggies
Life is getting worse
Always having dirt to play around in.

Have you seen the bigger piggies
In their starched white shirts
You will find the bigger piggies
Stirring up the dirt
Always have clean shirts to play around in.

In their sties with all their backing
They don't care what goes on around
In their eyes there's something lacking
What they need's a damn good whacking.

Everywhere there's lots of piggies
Living piggy lives
You can see them out for dinner
With their piggy wives
Clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon

Because it just gets better for the MPs

EXTRA: It comes as no surprise to me to discover the biggest pig of the lot has broken the law to stop us discovering what he and his grifter wife claimed for.

Saturday, 30 May 2009

David Aaronovitch on Little Atoms...

...plugged on Harry's Place. I commented:

I hope his book is better than his weekly Times columns defending the Labour government, which break Guinness World Records in the field of sophistry. As an Orwell prizewinner he, along with Alibhai-Brown and Hari, brings that institution into disrepute. Why? Because in promulgating the case for the Iraq war he, along with his contacts in the Labour top brass and his old mucker Mandelson, entered into a de facto conspiracy to deceive the public. To my mind, an Orwell prizewinner would have fought very hard to expose a political gangster like Alistair Campbell, not do his bidding. May I propose that a subscription be raised to finance an Alternative Orwell Prize, to be announced each year as a corrective to the ‘real’ one?

Also at Harry's Place, I had occasion to quote Orwell in relation to this. People over at Harry's have played this as a trump card against those of us who feel that the British Muslim bloc and Muslims in general have done and said far too little about Islamic extremists. Yeah, great that this is going on; but you could easily look at those pictures and see them as the first skirmish in a long internecine struggle between the factions, such as we see fought out perpetually in the war zones of the middle east and elsewhere. All in all it made me think of Orwell's England Your England:

'The insularity of the English, their refusal to take foreigners seriously, is a folly that has to be paid for very heavily from time to time. But it plays its part in the English mystique, and the intellectuals who have tried to break it down have generally done more harm than good.’

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Well, where are they?

Where's Balls? Paging Edward Michael 'Charged my Armistice Day Wreath to the Taxpayer' Balls. Ain't saying much, is he? Where's Brown? Where's Miliband? Where are any of them? 'Dealing with issues' no doubt.

I'll tell you where they are; they're inside watching the telly and trying to calculate how much shit is going to stick to them personally. "Stay out of sight," says a spin doctor, "Anyone who appears on TV will be be dragged in, associated, and this will stick like shit to a blanket." The spin doctors will call it image management, or something similar. They'll have a theory about faces being associated with events, flashbulb memories. It's a well worn metaphor, but Adolf's bunker does provide the best analogy. Right now it's like the final weeks: who's going to get a bunk on that submarine to south America, and who's going to be left with half a bottle of schnapps and a luger. They know the British public have short memories and they are just hoping for a long-odds break.

Balls, like all the Labour front bench, will be anxious to get on the box and start bullshitting. Feeding a string on mollifying cliches to "The People": 'transparency', 'we have learned', 'hard-working families', 'you spoke, we listened' etc. This is what politicians are trained intensively to do. Bullshit on television. He'll struggle to believe that new Labour's trusty herald, the telescreen, is an instant electronic pillory for a politician right now. The spin doctors will say, just keep your heads down, right down. Where's Mandelson? Brown's beyond saving; and now the rest eye each other nervously outside his sanctum: how do we get rid of him? Who's next and the only serious question cabinet ministers are ever truly interested in: can I pull it off? Could it be me?

Well, where are they?

The Luton Kerfuffle

I left this comment at Harry's Place

What I thought was interesting was that The Sun hid the story at the top of page two and kept the front page for Breakdancing Grandad is on Incapacity Benefit. News International still protects this incompetent and destructive government by minimizing its mistakes and the consequences of its mistakes.

Both sides of the Left - the Galloway idiotistas and the Cohenite ‘I’ve got balls, yer know’ faction - will go to great lengths to demonstrate how appalled they are by this. Fair enough; I hate the yob-isation of Britain as much as anyone. But is anyone even slightly surprised? I’m only surprised that it hasn’t happened earlier. Instead of doing its purported job of making life fairer for the working class, the Labour Party had - and still has - a fetishistic idea: the remodelling of the demographic of British society. This suits the Blair/Mandelson Thatcho-socialist arm of the party which toadys to big business - mass immigration = a cheaper wage bill - and makes life easier for the middle classes: cheap domestic labour, lower cost of services. It also suits the lefties, whose main desire is to destroy England and create the Multicultural EU State No. 678679. Whether anyone thinks this a bad or good thing is immaterial; it is true and everyone with intelligence knows it.

Sooner or later the football-shirted moron, so long drugged by round-the-clock football coverage, easy credit and Stella Artois, would notice that this was going on and they would also notice the contempt for usual, ordinary modes of life which this government has and has concealed with great flair (its only compentency is in the propagation and management of lies). Then the anger would begin. Wise and thoughtful rulers would have seen this as inevitable and advised caution with the multicultural/mass immigration project. Foolish rulers would have headed off all criticism with blithe comments about such anger being a ‘moral failing’, while taking steps to stifle legitimate debate on the subject - easy peasy when you have a public broadcaster deeply committed to the same project. (As a friend pointed out to me, the BBC doesn’t call immigration immigration so much these days, they tend to call it *migration*).

When the plank-wielding yob calls the police fucking left wing cunts he isn’t so very wide of the mark, is he? The police have been doing the bidding of some foolish people who are politically leftfield. As, in the 80s, they did the bidding of some seriously crass people who were politically rightfield. The McPherson report was virtually insane and very definitely racist, yet conventional lefties swooned, largely because their little fetish (police hatred) had been gratified. The force was now a service. Our football-and-stella boys will have noticed that there is one kind of policing for truculent minorities, and one for everyone else. If this offends my reason, why shouldn’t they be offended? I don’t sanction their behaviour, but I understand the anger behind it.

The conventional left will have to be *very* careful to avoid hypocrisy over their judgement of this.

Someone called Alan Ji said that Britain has been in a Multicultural State since the year dot. I responded:

Your arguments about British history being ‘multicultural’ are specious and has been manufactured and propagated by academia, the BBC and the Labour Party. Multiculturalism is clearly a doctrinal policy not simply a state of affairs. When the Danes and the Jutes came to England they were not welcomed by diversity officers and signposts in Danish. There was no official culture encouraging them not to integrate while simultaneously engaged in the project of national self-abasement. Scale and circumstances are what counts. England has absorbed many newcomers and that has been a force for good, because their numbers were manageable and the social and political situation meant that they could and would integrate. This is the complete opposite of the 1997-2009 politically-driven wave of immigration. Islam in Britain, in its scale and its frank exploitation of a socialist government’s cowardice and pandering, is a very bad thing indeed.

Your list of Labour achievements made me chuckle. It brought in the minimum wage as a sop to the working classes whose lives were about to be made immeasurably harder by Labour’s immigration policies - wages would have risen naturally during the boom due to supply and demand. Labour’s policies kept wages in menial jobs down and drove up rents. Not the actions of a working class party, but the actions of a party of middle-class, pseudo-intellectuals.

The expansion of university education was not achieved through educational excellence but by rigging the examination system by lowering pass standards. This is why young grads are so ignorant and vapid. Judge a society on the culture it creates and consumes: five minutes of doing that shows we’ve created a generation of narcissistic, tasteless, cocky, ignorant consumers. Not really the outcome one would expect from Higher Education.

The EU is undemocratic. We should make our own laws, it’s that simple.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Mark Brentano on the BBC

'And so tough rides are guaranteed for Tories, those who don’t genuflect at the altar of climate change, and indeed anyone who strays from the strict orthodoxies outside of which is reserved for heresies the state broadcaster hunts with an almost Inquisitorial zeal. By the same token, NuLabour and their shills are mollycoddled and sympathised with, Palestinians are listened to in reverential earnest, climate change activists are frottered against, the BBC being continually in estrus about the climate and its Western globalist assassins. As for the self-elected leaders of various shouty minority quangos, they are almost made into five-minute-tenure associate editors...'

More here.

What is Under Our Noses

Sorry for radio silence. My old hand-me-down PC is riddled with Trojans and viruses and ‘worms’. This makes many simple tasks very difficult.

There seems little to point out at this probably highly historic juncture in British history except the bleedin’ obvious: that, as George Orwell said, it’s a constant struggle to see what is right under your nose.

The following are some points that we will do well to remember and which cannot be stated too many times in the coming year of parliamentary paralysis and the arms race of lying that will take us to the next general election.

1) This country is heading for very hard times. Its economy has been wrecked by 12 years of financial mismanagement and imprudence (the new Labour view, that it is all America's fault is specious; if Brown hadn't recklessly spent and borrowed the effect of the downturn would not have triggered the long-term problems we now face). Any ‘green shoots of recovery’ rhetoric is based on a financial activity triggered by massive government borrowing – a time bomb sent into a very uncertain future, where the West, sclerotic with debt and incompetent institutions, and with its increasingly non-educated youth, will struggle to compete with the economies of the far East. Think of a grand old luxury motor car that does 10 miles to the gallon, is very comfortable but cannot go anywhere; and compare it with a nippy little mass produced model that does 30 miles to the gallon and gets into the smallest parking spaces.

2) The Labour government, the purported friend of the working class, has in fact and in effect, made war on that class, through maintaining and encouraging a right-wing monetarist economy and marrying it with obstinate cultural Marxism across education, law and order, immigration and all public services. This is the reason the streets are full of unemployed English manual workers and building sites are full of eastern European workers (provoking, during the February ‘British jobs’ strike, Peter Mandelson’s awesomely crass ‘go and work in Poland’ retort. Had it been made by a Tory cabinet minister socialists would have called for his head).To take a recent news story as an example, the fanatical political correctness that flourished under Labour was the reason that Mohamed Sidique Khan’s jihadist bookshop in Beeston was funded by the taxpayer. It was also the reason that Brian Paddick, on the afternoon of the 7th July, 2005, stood up in a press conference and announced that ‘Terrorism and Islam are two words we don’t use together’. Five minutes thought about the effect mass immigration into an already overcrowded country has had on rents and property prices demontrates the foolhardiness of one of Labour's - and the EU's - flagship policies.

3) The Labour government’s large parliamentary majority has enabled them to indulge in a 12-year tsunami of legislative bullying and institution attacking, which would have been worthwhile if it had resulted in the quality of life for the many being raised. It hasn’t. The government’s social and law and order policies have been disastrous and have made life harder for the low-paid and those living in tough areas; correspondingly, those same policies have made life easier for those who would attack and destabilise the very communities that Labour waxes lyrical over. The governent's belief in the EU is also a disaster for British democracy, idependence and rule of law. Tony Blair's Human Rights Act has been the cause of far more injustice than it has ever prevented.

4) The Labour government has taken Britain into two ill-fated wars and misled and deceived the public on both occasions. There is no doubt about that. There has been no public inquiry about the Iraq invasion. Nor will there be.

5) The political class has behaved immorally and in some cases criminally in the matter of expenses; they fought hard to conceal their indulgence while sedulously legislating against personal liberty of the British people and lecturing the public with the utmost pomposity about various non-negotiable moral imperatives, from climate change through fortnightly rubbish collections to fox-hunting. At the same time, having learned how the government blew billions on failed public works, such as the NHS supercomputer project and various Public Private Finance fiascos, we learn that MI5 lacked the funding to prevent the above-mentioned Sidique Khan’s terrorist attack, even though the man had been on police files for 12 years.

6) Our Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, is an arrogant and foolish man, quite possibly mentally ill, who has mistaken power lust for moral certitude and is quite prepared to bankrupt his country and destroy his party in the pursuance of it. Like most lefties, he’s a hard-nosed right-winger when it comes to the crunch. Witness his comments, published on the front page of the Daily Telegraph on Wednesday, 20th May, regarding the criminal activities of MPs:
“Individuals are to blame. They have got to take personal responsibility for their own failings.”

But, Gord! Are they not victims of society! Blimey!

7) The Conservative Party, which will very likely form the next government, is as weak, divided and as wrongheaded in its way as the Labour Party. Stuffed with millionaires and the extremely privileged, they know as little of ordinary life and their morals are no better than the champagne socialists they scorn. When they finally achieve power they will be left with wrecked public finances and will have no choice but to begin public spending cuts that will make the early Thatcher years look benign. They will be violently hated, but – and this is important – we must all remember which administration created the problem.

8) The extreme Right is making ground in this country and is doing so as a direct result of the ill-considered policies mentioned above. We must defend ourselves from fascism but also never forget how and why we have come closer to empowering the far-Right than ever before, even in the 1930s. The centre-left media is already beginning to formulate a new mantra – sorry, we must persist in voting Labour to keep the BNP out. They have haven’t the sense to conclude that the longer Labour is in power, the more power the far-Right will accrue because of the indignation and sense of grievance Labour’s policies cause among the working class and poor.

As I say, this might not be the most original analysis, but it needs to be kept in mind.

Friday, 15 May 2009

All Change for the Old Bailey! + ***Intermission*** Hambletonian

Well, matters have come to a pretty pass in Parliament. Although I am sad at the implications, I am very glad - exhilarated even - by the latest events. The Daily Mail' campaign to prosecute various MPs for obtaining money by deception is a delightful prospect, as is Carswell's proposed vote of no confidence in the disgraceful Speaker Martin. I don't want to get too excited but I feel this is a very important moment in British political history - the collapse of the three-party consensus/stronghold might be on the cards. I hope this happens. Politics - the political class - in this country has been smug, out-of-touch, rancid and intellectually corrupt for a very long time. To speak plainly: it needs a terrific kick up the arse and now it may get one. Certainly, come the next general election we will be seeing less of certain long-term irritants - and a pack of new ones. As bus conductors used to say: 'All change, please!'

However, we all need a break and since I've done nicely on the Turf these last two weeks (big price winners and doubles and some nice wins at Newmarket) I thought I'd post this picture, which is late great Stubbs:

'...his last great masterpiece - regrettably absent from the National's show - Hambletonian, Rubbing Down (1800). In 1799, Hambletonian had contested one of the most famous match races of the era, four miles two furlongs at Newmarket against a horse called Diamond.

A vast crowd arrived for the race which, in a sense, did not disappoint. Hambletonian led until the final half mile, then Diamond began to close him down; it was head-to-head all the way to the post, when a final push gave Hambletonian victory by half a neck; but he finished the race half dead, blood streaming from the whip and spurs.

The horse's owner, Sir Harry Vane-Tempest, proudly proclaimed that there would be a painted record by "Mr Stubbs" of this victory. Yet Stubbs rendered Hambletonian not as a conqueror but as a magnificently bewildered victim: looming unsteadily into the foreground, supported by his impassive but sympathetic grooms, the pitiful brush of his tail standing aloft from his exertions.

Vane-Tempest rejected the painting. Why, it is not certain, although it may be that Stubbs's depiction of Hambletonian was a bit too damn womanish for a full-blooded sporting gentleman. Later, the painting appeared at the Royal Academy but, again, it was not well received. As Andrew Graham-Dixon has said, the realism of Stubbs was "a form of moral vision": 200 years ago, and indeed today, his love for his subject can still probe the soul to its depths.'

The rest is here.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Who Called Stephen Fry?

Luvviedom is Labourland. You'll have to walk an awful long way in theatre and the arts to find anyone who - publicly at any rate - isn't smugly pink or who is willing to criticise socialism's drawbacks, blindspots and mistakes. This is beginning to change in a small way, but not significantly. So it was no surprise to find Stephen Fry, the acceptable face of intellectualism for the dumbdown generation, defending MPs defrauding the taxpayer and political class fiddling in general. After all, the man is a convicted fraudster himself.

Stephen Fry is the kind of champagne socialist Fabian who has lots of opinions about everyday life but not much recent experience (by which I mean experience of average financial reality)of it - largely because he's a millionaire (I applauded Keith Richards years back when he said: "I don't comment on public afairs because I don't live in the real world" Quite so). Fry was a leading player in the noisily left-wing alternative comedy movement of the 80s - most members of which are now far richer, more powerful and more smug than the largely working class comics they hated so much 25 years ago (Fry does get some honourable exception here - he defended Bernard Manning and others) and are now firmly part of the Blairish British Establishment.

I'm very curious as to how Fry came to be asked on Newsnight on Monday about what he thought of the MPs expenses scandal. A television presenter and comedian is suddenly a political pundit for a night. Why didn't they ask Roy "Chubby" Brown as well? I'm not one for conspiracy theories but if there isn't some hidden connection between the interview and Labour's communications office I will be very surprised. Roughly speking, the BBC is an extension of Labour's arts and social policy and is the product of four generations of middle class Marxists; a sort of permanent socialist cultural government by television, radio and the net. The chances of Fry's consultation being 'accidental' are remote. I have put in a FoI request to the BBC asking who made the editorial decision to interview him and why. So should you.

Fry' comments, surprise surprise, had just the effect the Government would have liked - all of a sudden facebook comments started popping up applauding Fry's 'common sense' towards fiddling MPs. I can just imagine in the hours before Fry spoke on tv someone quite high up in the Labour media team saying, 'This is bad. We can't lose the Facebook generation over this. Isn't there anyone who can help us minimize this?...'

Friday, 8 May 2009

The Cat's Out of the Bag


NB: They've been trying to gag this legally for some time. Notice how the Commons authorities are calling the Old Bill - not to have the cabinet questioned for fiddling but to try and root out the whistleblower.

Follows-ups to the Hitchens/Dylan conversation

To Guy Reid-Brown:

Music + Theatre have always had lights and smoke and mirrors etc. Your aesthetic metaphysics, as it were, are all very well but would invalidate most music played outside of churches - and inside them, come to think of it - since the year dot.
I think rock and roll is theatre mostly, not much different to Music Hall. True enough it has become unpleasant and I find most of it aesthetically disgusting these days. The funny thing about rock and roll is that both the left and the right got it wrong - the left thought it was going to bring down civilisation and so did the right. In the end it just went legit and businessmen took over, as they always do. True, it's played its part in the coarsening of society but all aspects of popular culture have coarsened for many reasons and I don't think you can blame Elvis and the Beatles for that. The best of rock and roll balanced, so to speak, on conservative culture. By which I mean the major and minor acts of the rock and roll years had grown up listening in to a varied but accomplished musical culture. They knew they had to be 'good players' who knew their chops. This means *standards*. That is what has changed. Punk and knob-twiddling killed that off. An excess of democracy and equality if you will. Add that kind of relativism in with a culture where sub-groups of youngsters listen to one sort of music and you have a recipe for stagnation and a brinkmanship culture of 'shock value'.

G Whitfleld wrote: You might as well say "Tottenham Hotspur will outlast Peugeot" or "Boeing will outlast The Angling Times" for all the sense your remark makes.

My remark makes perfect sense: the people who took against things like Dylan are unlikely to be remembered, outside of History departments. Dylan is still a household name and will continue to be for many years. Let me repeat, I am not a Dylan fan, just someone who recognises Peter Hitchens psychological tactic: attempting to invalidate anything that falls outside his rather narrow vision of what constitutes conservative culture. I mean here's a man who doubtless would have supported the banning of 'When I'm Cleaning Windows' had he been middle-aged in the 40s. I'm calling for good critical judgement. Hitchen's attack on Dylan was lazy.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Hitchens and Dylan

Peter Hitchens has been slagging off Bob Dylan, here.

I felt moved to reply:

I note that Hitchens makes no mention of Dylan’s Damascene conversion to Old Time Religion (something, along with a mid-60s motorcycle crash, they both have in common). It isn’t mentioned because it doesn’t sit well with Hitchens’ thesis that Dylan is some kind of lefty. Well, of course he isn’t and I don’t think he ever was particularly. Joan Baez noted that she could rarely get him involved with her political campaigns. Dylan’s soul and imagination were matters of first importance to him, rather than fighting international capital and the Patriarchy.
I would love to have a recording of Noel Coward singing Subterranean Homesick Blues; but I would ALSO love to have a recording of Dylan singing Mad Dogs and Englishmen. Both would be good records that showed off each artist’s talents.
Peter Hitchens, like his vastly more intellectually capable fellow conservative Roger Scruton, is at his very weakest when dealing with rock and roll. Both men obviously have a vestigial regard for the music of their youth (Scruton admits to a great liking for Jailhouse Rock and Hitchens admits he can’t get Tambourine Man out of his mind) but it appears to clash with so much they have settled on believing in middle age (though Scruton’s conservatism started at school with a war on kitsch) that they snatch at weak arguments to invalidate it, even when the ordinary people they purport to speak for absolutely love it.
Vast stretches of Dylan’s work are lazy and rather rubbishy; he is also hellishly overrated. But in answer to ‘is any of it any good’: yes: the good sections are very good indeed, and this is why it lives on; it is memorable, musical and it touches people somewhere deep.
Had George Orwell lived on another twenty years I feel he might have written a rather good essay on the Dylan phenomenon. Starting from the default Orwell position of refusing to be impressed by what the ‘fruit-juice drinkers’ were raving about, I feel he might well have concluded that though a fair bit was pretentious humbug with a bit of canting, there was also a lot that retained what he would probably have called ‘a queer power to move’. Orwell would also have noted that something unusually complex and literary had proved so popular and commanded so much public interest. Hitchens laughs at Shelter From the Storm but lyrically it could almost be one of Kipling’s more eccentric works. Shelter from the Storm does nothing for me, but you can’t help thinking Hitchens’ laughter at it is the slightly hollow, trying-to-convince-oneself-it-is-rubbish laughter that must have rung through suburbia in the 60s.
The electric guitar changed the world, possibly not for the better but it changed it. As an instrument it can have an elemental power, despite sounding, as Scruton notes, like a machine singing, if a machine could sing. Dylan at his best has that power, as do other rock and roll acts, and this is why conservatives don’t like it. It cannot be dismissed as easily as television or drugs and the best of it – and I feel the best of it is now long behind us – was out of official control and conservatives, like socialists, have a secret horror of anything out of official control. It is one of the hidden contradictions of conservatism that they like liberty until it offends them. I dare say Mill has all this covered enough to satisfy Hitchens, but he really ought to ask himself WHY people find more solace in this stuff than in the Book of Common Prayer or Wagner. Benedict XVI recently lamented young people’s interest in rock and roll it but admitted they got something spiritual from it – he just wanted them getting their spiritual jollies from his organisation.
As for self-pity, what’s wrong with a little self-pity? I think it’s been the subject and motivation of some major art and furthermore I fully expect a scientific study to prove that a moderate amount of self-pity each month reduces one’s risk of heart disease, stroke and suicide by ten per cent – oily fish for the soul.
Hitchens seems a hair’s breadth away from yelling ‘DEVIL’S MUSIC’ at the top of his voice, like some Alabaman church worthy in 1955 – or maybe yet another conversion is on its way – to one of the more prominent eastern religions…?
The charge that Dylan has never grown up is also pretty silly: Hitchens should study Dylan’s last few albums, which have been refreshingly mature, lyrically and musically. What Hitchens is doing is a cheap bit of op-ed – use Dylan’s new album as a way of playing a well-worn rhetorical record one more time: 60s people never grew up. (Most people don’t grow up now because they literally cannot afford to – I would like to hear more from Hitchens on this subject)
I think Dylan will still be played in 100 years time. Of course, England then will be an Islamo-Rainbow-Pluralist state with climate change and nuclear fall-out problems, so Shelter from the Storm will be quite apposite for those times. I feel confident Dylan will outlast Hitchens – as he has outlasted Malcolm Muggeridge, Mary Whitehouse and Gerald Nabarro.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Who Will Unloose this Gordian Knot?

Two bits of news from the Gordian Knot (as I am now pleased to call this government and its travails) made me titter yesterday. One, Gordon has now enlisted his main sycophant, Balls, and Peter Mandelson to run a weekly strategy meeting to 'plan the government's response to future events'. Two, the Times reported that some Westminster insiders were saying that Hazel Blears was preparing for a leadership bid.

Blears has already been warned off by whoever is doing Gordon's enforcing work since McBride left the stage, but I wouldn't rule anything out. The whips and the spin doctors may have got everyone singing from the same hymn sheet for the month leading up to the council and EU elections, but once Labour has been savaged in them then open fighting will break out again and next time it won't go away so easily.

And to paraphrase Shakespeare, who will unloose this gordian knot? Brown's bunker meetings with Balls and Mandelson - identify the next shitstorm and think of mollifying cant upfront that can be disseminated to the front bench liabilities and the telly - will be funny. Balls will be supporting his mate and urging Gordon leftwards into more unaffordable divorced-from-reality ideas like electric car subsidies and moonshine rhetoric about education excellence and climate change; Mandelson will talk of nothing but media manipulation, the seminal fluid of modern politics. Mandy will have seen an opportunity here because if he knows nothing else he knows Brown is finished and was always box office poison anyway. That's why Mandy backed Blair all those years ago and pricked Brown off in the first place. Sooner or later Mandy will have to tell Gordon he's finished and if he doesn't come off the pool table he'll take the whole Labour Party over the cliff with him. Perhaps he will purr in Gordon's ear while massaging those heaving, stressed shoulders: '...come now, Gordon. Resign. You can't kill the party over this.' Mandy's voice will become sly. 'Think of...Keir Hardy'. This will cause the most monumental tantrum from Brown and Brown won't budge. Nothing in this universe will get him to budge but losing a general election. Once Brown's had his tantrum and hates Mandelson once again what will happen? Mandy goes for the leadership. As far as my odds compiling goes I'm putting Mandelson in as the favourite to do the Brutus and put himself up for the job. It's what he wants and he wants it bad. Watch that man.

Friday, 1 May 2009

Saeva Indignatio

I just want to drop back to the front page of The Times on Wednesday. The story concerned the three pals of Mohammad Sidique Khan - Sadeer Saleem, Waheed Ali and Mohammed Shakil - who were cleared of being part of his terrorist cell (Ali and Shakil have subsequently been imprisoned for attending a terrorist training camp). Security forces admitted that the two trials - cost: 100 million - were 'the last roll of the dice' to convict these men of helping Khan.
This par is worth remembering:
Detectives are certain that the bombers received help from within the Muslim community in Beeston, Leeds, which, they say, is reluctant to co-operate with police. Sources said that potential witnesses had been “actively dissuaded” from helping police. As many as ten sets of unidentified fingerprints were found in bomb factories used by Khan, 30, and the three other men who killed themselves in the attacks on three Tube trains and a London bus on July 7, 2005.

No justice for the victims (plenty of moolah for lawyers, though). That's becoming a regular feature of British life under Labour. But it isn't just the ancien regime political class at fault (though it probably would be quite easy to trace all sorts of official mistakes back to fears of contravening the leftist protocols which have been building up in English life for years), the police, as usual, have made their customary howlers too.
A request from MI5 to West Yorkshire Police for information on the men from Beeston was never followed up. Scotland Yard also failed to pass the surveillance pictures to the FBI to show to Mohammed Babar, an al-Qaeda supergrass who organised a terror training camp in Pakistan attended by Khan.

Even though the mobile telephone number of Khan had already appeared during an investigation into Q, a man from Luton who was using young British men to courier money to al-Qaeda in Pakistan, no further action was taken against him.

If the police or MI5 had not dismissed Khan as a peripheral figure they might have followed him and Tanweer to Pakistan in the following December. It was there that the pair received the orders from the al-Qaeda leadership to attack London.

At the same camp was Muktar Said Ibrahim, the leader of the cell that attempted an attack in London on July 21. Members of another British terror cell, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, were also present.

Perhaps the security services would also have made the link to Mohammed Hamid, who styled himself Osama bin London. Throughout 2004 he organised jihad training camps in Britain to radicalise young men and send them to fight in Afghanistan and East Africa. Among those whom he trained were Ibrahim and the other three men in the 21/7 gang, Yassin Omar, Hussain Osman and Ramzi Mohammed.

Perhaps they would also have noticed how the hair of Khan and his fellow bombers was bleached by the explosives being made at their two bomb factories, which led to neighbours complaining about the smell.

A senior anti-terrorism officer insisted that the decision not to arrest the July 7 bombers before the attack was down to human judgment and a lack of resources, and had been the right decision at the time.

As it has become fashionable to say: yeah, right. The authorities ballsed this up and I hope that the victims' relatives pursue the police and this incompetent, useless Government over it.

Further noted items: Although Sadeer Saleem complained after his acquittal that he would always be connected with the bombs, he seemed to have forgotten he was an 'associate of the bombers and shared their beliefs', as John McDowall, head of Counter Terrorism Command at Scotland Yard said. Even though I have come to expect jaw-dropping statements from fundamentalist Islamic fascists, this took the biscuit. Add to that this:
In a letter to his future wife, Mr Saleem hoped that they would have many children who could kill the “filthy kafir” (non-Muslims).

Now let's have a look at the situation in Beeston:
Detectives remain convinced that other people were involved in the preparation for the attacks on July 7.

The fingerprints of up to ten unidentified suspects were discovered at the bomb factories. They believe that accomplices are being shielded by the close-knit Muslim community in Beeston and said that they were frustrated by the lack of co-operation from residents.

Here I must balm my saeva indignatio with a little sarcasm: how vibrant and diverse that community must be! Doesn't it make you feel warm and fuzzy towards multiculturalism?* Doesn't it make you chest-swellingly proud of the wisdom and moral rectitude of the 60s and 70s leftist ideologues who worked sedulously to rid us of the guilt of Empire by building foreign enclaves all round Britain and stamping on English culture wherever they could? They were building a better world, don't ya know? And don't you dare complain, otherwise they'll call you Daily Mail.

Then there is the matter of the bookshop in Beeston of which Sidique Khan was a trustee. The report on this little hive of fascism and hatred is worth reading closely. Highlights:
Every room breathed the Salafi jihadist creed. It was shouted by the radical websites, argued in the literature and proclaimed in the store’s collection of graphic videos and DVDs. That it was every Muslim’s duty to wage jihad was as unquestionable as the certainty that martyrdom was an honour to be sought. The group dynamic, the hiking and climbing trips, potholing and white-water rafting, tightened the bonds.

And all the while, well-intentioned public bodies were throwing money at the Iqra gang, whose projects included a school, a youth access venue and a gym. Grants totalling hundreds of thousands of pounds were made by the regional development agency Yorkshire Forward and the local council, churches and charities.

And there it is. Modern, we-know-best-you-don't, social democracy at work: Cowardice, the cultural cringe and national self-loathing worked out on a national scale on the taxpayer's nickel with deadly results. When you think that a white fascist, Nick Griffin, only had to open his mouth about Islam in the back room of a pub in Yorkshire to be arrested on the personal order of David Blunkett (see Rod Liddle passim in the Spectator), it is brought home to you once again that for a very long time the only fascist a lefty could see was a white fascist. Brown ones were, presumably, victims of poverty and racism.
Now, look at the testimony of Martin Gilbertson, an IT consultant who worked at the bookshop for two years and innocently helped the group develop secure computer systems. Get this:
He left in 2004 and says that he tried to warn the police of the danger brewing, but was not interviewed by counter-terrorism detectives until 52 innocent people had been murdered in London. Mr Gilbertson told The Times that he had become sickened by the febrile atmosphere and the “racist rhetoric” about filthy kafirs (unbelievers), Jews and America and Britain.

He knows how an apparently humanitarian anti-war message can mutate into a jihadist call to arms because he unwittingly helped Iqra to produce propaganda videos for mass distribution at Stop the War marches.

Gilbertson 'tried to warn the police but wasn't interviewed until afterwards'. If Gilbertson being brushed off has nothing to do with diversity/'sensitivity' protocols and their roots in the moral relativism of the Left, I'll eat my hat. Better we risk mass slaughter than upset anyone.

I think I'll leave it there. As my friend Mark Brentano has taken to saying during the years we've been on terrorist alert: walk safely.

*Because of mass-ignorance these days - nowhere more so than in the officially educated - I feel duty-bound to add a footnote explaining that my hostility to multiculturalism is a hostility to the obstinate socialist policy of multiculturalism, rather than a hostility to a multiracial aspect to society. You have to explain everything these days, and very patiently.