Saturday, July 30, 2011

Daily Mail readers with guns

Years ago, there was an Anti-Fascist Action leaflet that spoke to working class voters of the realities of the BNP. With a montage showing the then Tory leader John Major superimposed onto the booted physique of a Nazi skinhead, the title said 'BNP: Tories in flight jackets'. I also remember seeing a news item on a commemorative rally in Madrid for fascist leader Franco just a few years ago. The crowd was a curious mixture of wealthy Castillians and nazi boneheads. I wonder who called the shots there? With Norwegian uniform freak and self-confessed "Christian conservative" having apparently name-dropped Gr8 Brittish right-wing blawhards like the Daily Mail's Melanie Phillips and even Jeremy Clarkson in his manifesto, should M15 switch its attention away from Islamic extremists to Daily Mail readers?

Of course, the nice blue rinsed middle-English readership of the Daily Mail and Express would not condone such an action. However, the constant drip, drip of prejudice that emanates from their pages is unquestionably designed to stir up hatred against anyone they don't like, be it Muslims, single-mothers, gays or Gaelic speakers.

And that's the strange thing. Conservatives by definition should seek to 'conserve' their local environment. It's obvious that they baulk at the influx of dark-skinned foreigners while welcoming white-skinned foreigners, such as Rupert Murdoch. However, the British isles have always been multi-cultural or in a state of cultural flux.

There have always been significant numbers of people who followed other gods or none. Or who spoke different languages, such as Scottish, Irish, Norn or Welsh or even the Latin of the church and the French of the royal families. There has always been homosexuality. There have always been 'illegitimate' children. There have always been asylum seekers or just migrants. There have always been people seeking to help others in their communities and communities seeking to help individuals. I'm thinking here of those who were too old or physically unable to work being given a share of the seabirds on St Kilda or the guga in Ness. Or even remote islanders giving food and shelter to shipwrecked Spanish Armada sailors washed up on Hebridean beaches. Or even the Asian travelling salesmen of the 1930s who learned Gaelic to ply their trade in the Scottish Gaidhealtachd and were given a warm welcome - see Iain Crichton Smith's An Duine Dubh.

Call it socialism maybe.

I don't live in hope but perhaps the day will come when conservatives accept the diversity of their local environment. It is ironic, but kneejerk xenophobic warmongering moralistic conservatism - in all its guises from New Labour to the Tories to UKIP to the EDL to Anders Breivik to the Roman Catholic Church and Orange Order or Islamic militants- is more of a threat to society than any of their usual bugbears. Norway for example has been a mainly progressive nation since winning its independence in 1905. However since then the most significant assaults on Norwegian life and society have come from the Nazis and Breivik.

We used to hear much here of Sinn Féin's 'ballot box and the armalite' strategy. Perhaps an unofficial and unmentioned strategy links the likes of the Daily Mail, Daily Express and even Jeremy Clarkson to Breivik and those in the EDL? Some talk, others act?

Whatever, I tend to agree with AFA's old maxim that there should be 'no platform for fascists'. Fascism doesn't start with concentration camps - or gun massacres, that's where it ends.

For more topical reading, check out:

Interesting piece on the proposed EDL march in London and how it should be dealt with. Its interesting too to read in one of the comment links that the EDL are now trying to distance themselves from former members who may have had contact with Breivik. I guess it's not good PR for an organisation that claims to have 'Christian European' values at heart to be exposed as being not only a mentor for but complicit with someone who massacred innocent 'Christian Europeans'. The fact remains that the EDL and militant Islamists are just different cheeks on the same arse.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Murdoch: London Calling

What better way to get your head around the enormity of  Wappinggate, Rebekahgate, Tapgate, Filthgate etc than by kicking back with the Clash on loud and a large dram of Bunnahabhain. Coming hot on the heals of 'Duckhousegate' and the MPs' expenses scandal then it's little wonder that an increasing number of Scots are seeking independence from a London that seems to be sinking in corruption. Certainly, after watching Michael Portillo on Newsnight last week, I fail to see a 'sense of fair play' as one of the constituent parts of the 'British' identity.

This latest episode in shame stems from the megalomania of an Australian though. Not only were child murder victims, dead soldiers' families and other people, famous or not, deemed worthy of having their phones bugged but the ordinary staff on News of the World are being shat on too. Murdoch senior and Murdoch junior are at this point, standing by their hypocrite of a former editor.

Upon receiving a lengthy communique from James Murdoch last week, ordinary staff thought that is was to announce the resignation/ sacking of Rebekah Brooks. But no... somewhere down in the 18th paragraph, ordinary staff were told that it was they who were losing their jobs.

Murdoch's middle finger as seen on Twitter.

News International are bloodied but unbowed. They see the whole mess as being the fault of the Guardian or the chinless and unconvincing millionaire leader of the Labour Party. There has been no apology. Worse of all, there seems to be a determination to rub salt into the wounds by establishing a 'Sun on Sunday'.

Joe Strummer would have loved it...
The ice age is coming, the sun's zooming in
Meltdown expected, the wheat is growing thin
Engines stop running, but I have no fear
'Cause London is drowning, and I live by the river

Seeing Rebekah Brooks hounded by packs of journos and angry protesters has brought some light relief though. After all, the Sun and News of the World has whipped up more than enough hate of others over the decades: from glorifying the deaths of hundreds of Argentinians with their 'Gotcha' headline to slandering the dead and injured at the Hillsborough tragedy to inciting mobs of morons to attack paediatricians in a campaign to 'out' paedophiles.
Those British boots go kick Bengali in the head
Police sit watchin'
The newspapers been read
Who cares to protest
After the attacker fled
Out came the batons and
The British warned themselves

Poor Rebekah, like the harassed youth in the 'Guns of Brixton'...
The money feels good
And your life you like it well
But surely your time will come
As in heaven, as in hell

Capitalism is dog eat dog, a constant cycle of boom and bust. Murdoch's support for Thatcher indirectly lead to death of much of our industry. Let's hope his empire starts to crumble as well.
If you can play on the fiddle
How's about a British jig and reel?
Speaking King's English in quotation
As railhead towns feel the steel mills rust water froze
In the generation
Clear as winter ice
This is your paradise

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Moral compass meltdown

Poor Tommy Sheridan. He may or may not have fucked up. He may or may not have fucked a woman or two outside of precious wedlock. Whatever, he felt the wrath and vengeance of Rupert Murdoch's News of the World - that beacon of morality, shining its light out over a dark sea of filth where only the likes of sodomites, single-mothers and asylum seekers sail.

Its a bad news day for the guardians of morality.

First, we find out that the newspaper that was so outraged by claims that Sheridan took part in '3 in-a-bed' romps was bugging the mobile phone of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler while she still remained 'missing'. The News International stable is infamous for tasteless or outright offensive practises - remember the Hillsborough tragedy anyone? - but surely its sister paper, the NoTW, takes the biscuit for lowlifery. Is it any wonder that tabloid journalists usually occupy the same rung on the ladder of shame as do child molesters and Margaret Thatcher?

Then we find out that Sheridan may have been spared prison. It seems as if some vital emails in the possession of News International went 'missing in Mumbai' prior to the trial which saw Sheridan's former socialist comrades cosy up in bed with dirty Murdoch's organ.

AC Grayling thinks that tabloid journalism in the UK is a major impediment to a more informed and progressive society. Its hard to argue with him.
From the point of view of culture, and in particular from the point of view of British culture, a lot of visitors to the United Kingdom say how surprised they are by the unpleasant, rather raw nature, rather degraded and superficial nature of popular culture in the United Kingdom. The tabloid newspapers, the popular magazines, which are all about “celebrities”, which are all about a certain kind of voyeurism — they hunt in packs, the tabloid press, chasing after people, first to extol them and then to tear them down when they're up. And that there's a presumption that if a nail sticks up, it's got to be hammered down, so anybody who's a bit special in society or sticks out in a certain way is likely to get a hammering by the tabloid press. AC Grayling
If this is all rather depressing then news from the last tribal outpost in Western Europe might cheer you up. The deeply religious people of Northern Ireland are so hungry for flesh that 'houses of ill repute' are doing a roaring trade. This, despite the likes of blawhard bigot Doctor Reverend Iain Paisley preaching to his flock that if they want to be 'loyal' to God and Ulster then they first need to stop sex before marriage, oppose sodomy and spend each Sunday in church. His Roman Catholic 'counterparts in the magic arts' preach the same except they're not too bothered about the Sabbatarian bit as long as you shake your rosaries every once in a while.

This comes not long after Peter Robinson's clean-living, family values campaigner and homo-hating wife Iris was found to be indulging in a bit of sodomy herself with a younger man that was not her husband.