An Unholy Alliance – the BBC and the Tax Payer’s Alliance



True to the BBC’s entirely subjective editorial guidelines on impartiality, the corporation’s willingness to allow The TaxPayer’s Allowance a mainstream platform to air their obnoxious opinions only confirms the lie that ‘Aunty’ is ‘balanced, impartial and fair.’

Here are the BBC’s own guidelines on impartiality and the use of ‘contributions from other organisations.’

We should not automatically assume that contributors from other organisations (such as academics, journalists, researchers and representatives of charities) are unbiased and we may need to make it clear to the audience when contributors are associated with a particular viewpoint, if it is not apparent from their contribution or from the context in which their contribution is made.

And here’s an extract from the TaxPayer Alliance’s annual report regarding their links to TV.

Television is a highly trusted and impartial medium and over the years we have carefully built up a range of close contacts inside the industry. We’re close to 4 Millbank, the base for Westminster’s political broadcasters, so we have great relationships with the BBC, ITV and Sky News. It’s not just news; we also work with producers and researchers on longer programmes and documentaries. For example, Inside Out South West covered our non-jobs report.

We work with national and local radio stations too. According to the latest RAJAR (Radio Joint Audience Research) industry report, 91.6 per cent of the UK population now tune in to radio every week, making it a powerful medium for communicating our ideas. Over the last twelve months we’ve set our sights on new programmes in radio and television. We’ve also reached new audiences by targeting more chatty, lifestyle programmes such as Daybreak, Vanessa and The Alan Titchmarsh Show.



“So what?”  you may say but this so-called ‘Alliance’ of ‘Tax Payers’ is no such thing, it’s just a front for a bunch of ultra-right wing small government cranks masquerading as a ‘grassroots organisation.’ Their report crows about longstanding links to the media; the usual suspects in the press; The Mail, Express, Sun and  Telegraph who have no legal or moral obligation to be impartial and the TV and radio, who do.

The BBC more than any other broadcaster would like every licence fee payer to believe that their imposed licence tax is a guarantee of trust and fairness when it comes to news reporting but that lie is disproved with each and every news report screened each and every day. I pay my licence fee yet I never, ever see my opinions, extreme as they may seem to people who define themselves as ‘tax payers,’ represented on the BBC.

All BBC news follows a pre-ordained editorial narrative, whether that’s reporting on military or industrial conflict, economics, politics, social justice or the royal family.

Here is their get out clause :

Contributors expressing contentious views, either through an interview or other means, must be rigorously tested while being given a fair chance to set out their full response to questions. Minority views should be given appropriate space in our output; it is not for the BBC to suppress discussion.

Consequently, we will sometimes need to report on, or interview, people whose views may cause serious offence to many in our audiences. On such occasions, referral should be made to a senior editorial figure who may wish to consult Editorial Policy. The potential for offence must be weighed against the public interest and any risk to the BBC’s impartiality. Coverage should acknowledge the possibility of offence, and be appropriately robust, but it should also be fair and dispassionate. The public expression by staff and presenters of personal offence or indignation risks jeopardising the BBC’s impartiality.


What these mealy mouthed words amount to is this;  ‘We, The BBC, will decide who gets to speak and it is for US to decide whether the airing of views will cause offence or is not in the public interest.’ We are of course entirely impartial arbiters and it is not for us to suppress discussion as long as that discussion does not offend people like US.’

This patriarchal censorship has been a staple of BBC news since the corporation first began broadcasting. It is a state propagandist that spews a diet of sycophantic, elitist spin that maintains the political status quo and therefore guarantees its own survival in an era of digital  choice. The BBC, far from being ‘’fair and dispassionate’  is grossly biased and partisan.

Witness their reporting of two current issues; Syria and austerity. Not a single report goes on screen without some form of attack upon Assad’s regime and at least one interview with a ‘rebel’ spokesperson backed up by footage of usually ‘unconfirmed’ attacks on civilians and other atrocities. Now, these attacks may well have taken place but the narrative is clear; Assad is the ’baddy’ and the ‘rebels’ are the ‘goodies.’ The forces fighting Assad are ‘rebels’ whereas the forces fighting British troops in Afghanistan are ‘extremists’ ‘militants’ and ‘insurgents’

Likewise, Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Ireland.  The reporter will also add his or her own twopenneth to any report, almost always giving tacit approval, if not outright support for any military action taken by ‘OUR’ forces or the dominant political position.

With the current austerity policies, there is an unspoken yet obvious narrative to all reports. The demonisation of ‘benefits scroungers, welfare claimants, social undesirables, illegal immigrants, legal migrants and others deemed offensive to ‘the audience perception’ is relentless and disgusting.

This is where the TaxPayer’s Alliance comes in. The other day a report on house building initiatives and  the impact upon economic recovery was discussed by a government minister, a member of the Building Federation and someone from The Tax Payers’ Alliance. This gives the TPA an equal billing as elected politicians and business experts.  Today another TPA goon was the only person interviewed regarding the Patrick Mercer ‘cash for questions’ scandal. This gives the TPA the opportunity to present themselves as non-political, which is an outright lie. They may pour scorn on certain Tories but only from an ultra-right ‘low tax/small government’ perspective. Here’s what the BBC guidelines have to say about using such spokespeople.


Similarly, the BBC must remain independent and distanced from government initiatives, campaigners, charities and their agendas, no matter how apparently worthy the cause or how much their message appears to be accepted or uncontroversial.

Careful thought will be necessary to ensure perceptions of the BBC’s impartiality are maintained when content is scheduled topically and coincides with a third party’s campaign. It is advisable to contact Editorial Policy.


Well, there’s no denying that the TPA are a campaigning organisation, Their own website describes the organisation as ‘Britian’s independent grassroots campaign for lower taxes’ and claims to have ‘over 75,000 supporters nationwide.’

These figures are impossible to verify. On that basis I could argue that YKTD has over a billion supporters worldwide and therefore we should be interviewed just after Nick Clegg (or before).  Imagine the outcry from the right wing press if say, Len McCluskey, president of Unite was interviewed on an equal footing as the Prime Minister or even the former  CEO of Tesco, Sir Terry Gobshite. Unite has over three million members in the UK and Ireland and yet has to endure a barrage of negative reporting from the BBC and other ‘impartial’ news broadcasters. 

I wonder if indeed this ‘Editorial Policy’ department is contacted  each and every time a person from the TPA is interviewed by a lazy, prejudiced BBC reporter, managed by  a lazy, prejudiced BBC producer, overseen by a lazy, prejudiced BBC News bigwig in a lazy, prejudiced BBC structure that claims to be impartial and a byword for fair and trustworthy reporting but fails its own tests each and every day.

I therefore propose my own grassroots campaign group, the National Insurance Payers Institute (NIPI) who campaign for everyone paying National Insurance contributions and defends Big Government and the Nanny State. We believe that the government should own EVERYTHING,  including the banks and that NI should replace direct taxation as the only form of direct deduction from salaries and used to fund ALL  forms of government expenditure.

On the 8-10-08 those two noble socialists, Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling handed over £500 BILLION to ‘help restore confidence in British banks’ with one eye on their future earnings as touring economic ‘experts.’ Well, perhaps the TPA should be looking at how that fortune was siphoned away by the banks and how the rest of us, our kids and grandkids will be paying for that heinous act of treachery for decades, before they start spouting on about disability ‘scroungers.’

Extreme Prejudice


What is an ‘extremist?’ The word is entirely subjective and one person’s extremist is another’s freedom fighter. In my eyes Teresa May, David Cameron, George Osbourne, William Hague and Barack Obama are extremists. In my eyes Paul Dacre is a hate preacher, Rupert Murdoch and Richard Desmond are hate preachers, Peter Hitchens, Melanie Phillips and Richard Littlejohn are hate preachers.

Extremism cuts both ways Cuthbert.

What the political elite really mean by extremism is people who express opinions that are not part of any prescribed narrative whether that’s to to the left or the right, anarchist or islamist. The militant, terrorist, insurgent and extremist are those who do not view the world in terms of nationhood and borders but rather throught prism of class, ideology or faith. The demonisation of anyone who is prepared to voice these heretical views is set upon in an orchestrated media campaign of vilification.

OK, so most Daily Mail readers don’t read an editorial and go and and bomb a food bank or behead a Big Issue seller, nevertheless Dacre’s brand of hatred is far more widespread, relentless and in my opinion dangerous than any two-bit, self-proclaimed mullah. For all his bluster and bullshit, Abu Hamza’s trickle of hate is a mere piss in the ocean of terror perpetrated by people who have REAL power.

In the 1980s I was a trade union activist and would often be described as a ‘militant’ although I never belonged to that splinter group or indeed the Labour Party. I certainly wasn’t a Trotskyite because I didn’t even understand what that word meant. I was no academic but I was a socialist in my bones. My dad was a docker who was out on strike all through the 70s when I was growing up and then made redundant in the 80s.

Thatcherism was no glib hate figure for us, she was a true enemy and we HATED her, truly hated her and what she represented. Just as much as she and her puppet masters hated us. She was also a coward and a hypocrite talking tough on enemies without and within yet getting the police and the secret services to do her dirty work and then covering it up, decrying the something for nothing culture yet poncing juicy defence contracts for her idiotic son whilst sending young boys to die in the Falklands.

My so-called ‘militancy’ was based in my own experiences and shaped my belief that the only conspiracy at work in the world is to keep the rich, rich or make them even richer. Everything from warfare to invented notions of nationhood and identity flows from that one basic human instinct to retain power, wealth and influence. That’s how it’s always been ofcourse. Those noble Greeks and Romans who fought for their liberty and to spread ‘civilisation’ amongst the barbarians were doing it for the spoils of war more than any high falutin’ concept of democracy or republicanism.

Read Thuycidides or Tacitus and that truth becomes self -evident. Athens under Pericles or Rome under Caesar were only the Palmerston’s and Reagans of their day, presiding over vast empires who subjugated and enslaved other peoples under the pretext of democracy, yet built their temples and palaces with the proceeds.

If voicing views on Afghanistan or Iraq, Israel or Palestine, Ireland or El Salvador, Bangladesh or Bolton makes me an ‘extremist’ then I reserve the right to denounce those who bandy about such words in a similar manner. As austerity bites and its consequences become all too visible in our everyday lives, maybe we should ask why Iain Duncan-Smith and his wild eyed social engineering policies is classed as a ‘reformer’ instead of the fascist extremist that he truly is.

Let Them Eat Crack! TV & The Poor

Hot on the heels of ‘People Like Us,’ BBC3’s portrait of Manchester’s Harpurhey community, comes Channel 4’s ‘Skint’ a maggot on the carpet look at the residents of Scunthorpe’s Westcliff estate. Both programmes are snide, voyeuristic portrayals of what sociologists now term ‘the precariat’ (aka the ‘underclass’). Both pretend that they are offering an ‘insight’ into the lives of those caught in the so-called ‘benefit trap’ or who are struggling to make ends meet, by hook or by crack. Addicts, alcoholics, shoplifters, prostitutes, market traders, karaoke singers, cross-dressers, drug dealers, dancers, thieves. Y’know just like on ‘Shameless’ or ‘The Royle Family’ or ‘Jeremy Kyle.’ Laughing at poor people has a long and ignoble heritage dating all the way back to the beginning of TV itself.  Whereas once we had RP voiced toffs trawling around terraced back to backs pontificating on the sense of community spirit in the slums, now we have Finchy from The Office narrating scripts seemingly written by Daily Mail editors.

This isn’t a coincidence, the current fascination with ‘Chav-o-vision’ is a direct result of the Tory/New Labour abandonment of the inner cities and urban heartlands particularly in the north. Whilst Major and Blair, Brown and Cameron fought for the middle ground, those solid Labour constituencies were left to rot and fester with fewer and fewer people voting and a cycle of deprivation trapping generations into a ghetto of social stasis. Well, those chickens have come home to roost and now the shit’s beginning to stink the coup out.

Here’s how The Telegraph’s Chris Harvey saw ‘Skint.’

This was TV as a window into lives that most people in this country have no way of comprehending, and the makers had captured them in the raw. It wasn’t fun, but it was compelling and insightful.

Well, maybe Telegraph readers have no way of comprehending these lives, but perhaps  Guardian readers are a tad more ‘down wid da hood’ yah? Here’s what their TV critic, Sam Woolaston had to say :

It could have been awful – gawpy and patronising, or worthy and dull. It’s none of those things. It’s funny, fair, frank. And it still manages to highlight the very real issues of poverty in this country.

So, that’s OK then. We have a consensus on ‘Skint’ from both hard right and soft left. People Like THEM!!! You wouldn’t want to live in Harpurhey or Westcliff but atleast via the power of ‘Chav-O-Vision’ you can get to see how feral scallys smoke weed all day and heroin addicts ‘graft’ stolen goods in a frank and fair, non-gawpy and non-patronising, compelling and insightful way . This is NEWS to some people. Finchy’s doing the voice over, so it must be true.

Yet, ‘documentaries’ (if you can call these programmes as such) are only the tip of a very cold and slippery iceberg. Switch on breakfast tv and ‘Saints & Scroungers’ is showing on BBC2. Daytime’s got the Kyle Krew crawling from DNA test to DNA test and then of an evening you can settle down and enjoy ‘The Hoarder Next Door To The Extreme Hoarder’ and ‘The Filth Files Extreme Filth Extra’ where poverty and mental illness give viewers a two-for-the-price-of -one freakshow bonanza.

The commissioners and top brass will ofcourse excuse this type of garbage as ‘opening a debate on the issues’ or even ‘providing education and information’ – check those helplines folks if YOU’VE been affected by any of the issues featured. But it’s not just TV wallowing in poverty porn. The press, both tabloid and broadsheet as well as magazines and publishers delight in featuring extreme tales of lowlife  brutality and neglect. Most readers of this type of slime are ofcourse poor people themselves. Just as they’re more likely to buy scratch cards in an attempt to escape the reality of their situation, so the poor will devour slime to make themselves feel a bit better about their often terrible lives.

There is a deliberate attempt to demonise and marginalise the people featured in these programmes and in these papers, mags and books as ‘The Other’ as sub-human examples of a welfare system gone to rot, not an economic system that has failed them. They are the ‘undeserving poor’ as opposed to those who accept their poverty and beg for crumbs from ‘Secret Millionaires’ or temporary swaps with wealthy show offs to see ‘How The Other Half Live.’  Private philanthropy not government subsidies is the Victorian ideal.

‘Skint’ is the just the latest piece of state propaganda directed not at those who create the conditions that these people are forced to survive in but the often un-educated, inarticulate and naive people whose lives are being exploited.  ‘Cheap holidays in other people’s misery’ as Mr Rotten put it.  The ‘drip, drip’ effect of this constant stream of negativity and stigmatisation only provides ammunition for the rich kids who inherited their wealth, who have never worked in their lives or had to struggle for their education, or their jobs, or their position yet see fit to lecture others on self-discpline, hard work and morality.

‘Let them eat crack!’

Look, poor people!!

Look, poor people!!


Harry’s Games

I like getting legless too homeboy!

I like getting legless too homeboy!


Here’s the full transcript of Nicholas Witchell’s BBC news report on Prince Harry’s visit to the ‘Warrior Games’ as part of his seven day tour of the USA.

“He’s never been one to turn down a challenge, which is why Harry was to be found forming the base of a human pyramid. Why were they doing it and why was there a man dressed as a bird on top, those are questions to which there are no clear answer.

But the challenge that matters to Harry at the moment is to bring a sporting event such as this to Britain. The ‘Warrior Games’ has been an annual event in the United States for the past four years. As the name implies, these are games for wounded service men and women; they help rehabilitation, they’re good for morale. Harry’s plan is to create a British version.

This is far more than a whim on Harry’s part, the ambition is to have games such as this taking place in Britain within the next couple of years. That’s the aspiration, behind the scenes Harry and his officials are working to turn it into a reality. It means a lot to the athletes, it matters to Harry and he’s determined to see it happen. Nicholas Witchell, BBC News, Colorado Springs.”

That’s 1 minute and 21 seconds of BBC propaganda served up as a genuine news item. Here’s the real story.

“He’s never been one to turn down a freebie, which is why Harry was to be found feeling up pretty young American girls at the tax payer’s expense. Why they were doing it and why there was a man dressed as a bird on top are questions to which there is only one answer; such juvenile antics are supposed to show the fun-loving, cheeky side to one of the world’s foremost parasites.

But the challenge that matters to Harry at the moment is to engineer an image of himself as a brave, warrior prince. ‘The Mutilated Cannon Fodder Games’ has been an annual event in the United States for two centuries. As the name implies, these are PR opportunities for the armed services and the politicians who send them to war to protect their own economic interests. They help sell war to young kids, they’re good for mass, global propaganda. Harry’s plan is to pretend he puts his life in danger just like these poor bastards.

This is far more than just a banal photo opportunity on Harry’s part, the ambition is to patronise mutilated British squaddies in Britain within the next few years. That’s the cynical explanation, behind the scenes, Harry’s faceless strategists are pimping him out to turn it into a reality. It means fuck all to the Taliban, it matters not an iota to the city whiz kids who make billions from oil and weapons and they’re determined to use dim witted royals to front their cycle of perpetual conflict. Phil Thornton, MMAgot News, Liverpool.”

Good Evans?



More BBC balance and impartiality on display this morning on Radio 4. In an interview with the solicitor representing residents of a London block of flats seeking a court order to stop the MOD placing missiles on the roof of their building, Evans demonstrated that typical stock BBC response to the rights of ‘little people.’

His general tone was one of contempt and scorn for these residents and his line of questioning was contemptuous throughout. The MOD with great fanfare, announced these supposed Olympic ‘anti-terror’ procedures months ago yet Davies never once questioned the so-called military expert ‘and former infrantryman’ (ooh get you soldier boy) guest about proof of any plot to hijack a plane during the Olympics  and if this wasn’t just yet another piece of hysterical political posturing’  by the ‘keep em scared’ brigade.

No, Evans was far more interested in whether the residents had any right to complain seeing as the council owned the flats and could therefore do what it wanted with its own building. When the solicitor made his point about residents not being consulted and the infringement upon their daily lives, having armed police and soldiers in the building as well as living and sleeping in a building that housed heavy weaponry, Evans became almost angry ‘are you saying these people can’t go about their lives just because there are surface to air missiles on their roof?’ or words to that effect. Er, yes! How you would you like to kip in your fancy metrosexual mews house with a fucking exocet in the loft Evo?

Evans then asked soldier boy if shooting down a plane over London was in any way better than allowing it to reach its target? The ‘former infrantryman’ explained that ofcourse this would be a catastrophe but better killing Hackney scumbags than members of the political elite eh? No, he didn’t say this outright but that’s the general idea.

Evans then returned to the solicitor, ‘surely you can’t be questioning the MOD’s strategy?’ he asked as if such a thing was unthinkable. Amazingly he replied that he wasn’t yet asked why the missiles couldn’t be housed in another building. ‘Ah so it’s OK for other people to have these missiles?’ Evans went into sneery NIMBY mode. The solicitor replied that he meant army engineers could surely construct their own tower or maybe the MOD could house their SAMs in say an empty building rather than one housing hundreds of families, adding maybe they could be re-housed.

At this Evans exploded. “re-housed for 2 weeks?” the very thought it of it. Why couldn’t they just get on with it,  after all what’s a few weeks living with the fear of explosion and certain death when our brave athletes are taking on the cream of the world’s drugs cheats in a few weeks time? Have some Blitz spirit you moaning minnies! The solicitor explained that it wasn’t only 2 weeks but that they’d be there for 3 months and Evans seemed cowed for a split second ‘ah so longer than 2 weeks then.’

I don’t know whether we should expect any better from this over-rated ‘business’ reporter, the type of ‘diverse’ employee the BBC can parade as a token example of their inclusivity. Gay or not, Evans displays exactly the same kind of prejudice most BBC reporters of any racial, regional or sexual background display against the working class and the undercurrent of this report was evident. Many of these residents will be ‘blacks’ and they should be lucky to have a flat in what’s fast becoming one of the hottest gentrification areas in the capital. The olympics has done wonders for their shithole of a community and many of Evans’s mates in the BBC have even settled there which is why there are far more vegan delis in the area these days.

Then, it was back to Andy Murray, the REAL news with more regurgitated press headlines about Braveheart, Princess Teardrop, Posh & Becks and ‘our’ new national hero masquerading as ‘news’.



John Harris, Owen Jones & The Dinner Partisans

Have you ever cringed when some Radio 4 ponce has declaimed on behalf on behalf of the ‘working clars’? Despite their posh accents they will claim that their parents were definately ‘blue collar’ but worked hard to ‘improve’ themselves. They will say that that their parents really struggled, holding down three or four jobs to provide them with an opportunity to ‘better’ themselves via private education They will no doubt absolve themselves by claiming they ‘won’ a scholarship and that they found themselves adrift at Oxford or Cambridge amongst toffs who regarded them as prole scum.

John Harris is the Guardian’s token ‘soft leftie’, the son of a nuclear engineering lecturer and a nuclear chemist brought up in the very posh Cheshire town of Wilmslow. He went to a comprehensive, allbeit one in Wilmslow and then went on to Oxford. John went on to be a well known music hack during the 90s, wrote the book ‘The Last Party; Britpop, Blair and the Demise of English Rock’  and now writes for The Guardian.

Owen Jones is the Independent’s token soft leftie’, the son of a local authority worker and an IT lectuter. He was educated at Cheadle and Marple sixth form college, one of Cheshire’s wealthiest areas and went on to Oxford. He then went onto write the book ‘Chavs; the demonisation of the working class’ and now writes for The Independent.

The parallels between both writers, a generation removed, are obvious and yet illuminating. Neither seem to have ever had a ‘proper job’ other than journalism or political aparatchikery (sic). Owen Jones describes his ‘career’ as ‘a former dogsbody for Labour MPs and trade unions’ before moving onto writing books and becoming a broadsheet columnist. Harris’s career is just a series of titles he’s been published by, books he’s written and the odd spot of TV punditry.  They had it tuff!

I shared a panel with Jones as part of a Liverpool literary festival in May that explored attitudes towards working class culture and politics. He was a brilliant orator, a confident and inspiring speaker who articulated many of the familiar gripes that we all had about how working class voices are marginalised and ignored or patronised and misrepresented by the middle class media elite.

Yet, there seemed to be something a bit too rehearsed about Jones’s speil, as if he was proving that all those years spent studying Labour and Trade Union history had been well spent. He knew election percentages dating back 50 years, he channeled into concerns about media distortion and prejudice and he won a cynical audience, who’d heard it all many times before, over. People spoke of him as a future Labour Party leader as if this was something to be excited by. Compared to Miliband’s brand of middle-class patriotic Neo-New Labour posturing, Jones looks like Eric Heffer but really he’s just another product of ‘the system.’

Harris and Jones share many traits; they regard themselves as ‘radicals’ as voicing the opinions of ‘the working class’ and want to be seen as troublesome thorns in the establishment’s side but really they are pretty tame pet Jack Russells, snapping at the squire’s ankles and are patted on the head for displaying spunk and spirit. They have a career path mapped out and seem to desire acceptance by the very people they pretend to despise.

They are typical Guardianista/Indie dinner party partisans, claiming to speak on behalf of the marginalised, the downtrodden, the oppressed and whilst Jones places this in a wider cultural and economic context than Harris, they both seem to accept that work in itself is some kind of panacea, that all the working class want are jobs and houses to keep them happy. Their no doubt genuine concern for the lives of ordinary people at the receiving end of Austerity Britain is welcome and both writers touch on some very important issues but still, they are outsiders looking in. Harris lives in that exclusive literary ghetto, Hay On Wye whereas Jones lives in ‘London,’ no doubt one of the gentrified former ghettoes now popular with bike riding, Independent columnists.

Both Harris and Jones seem to resent the attitudes of their fellow Oxonians towards their middle class credentials and this has resulted in a desire to piss off the toffs who inhabit the upper echelons of both the political and media establishment. Yet their brand of mild left rhetoric only exists in a narrow and self-contained spectrum where such views are regarded as ‘extreme’ or ‘militant.’ The real voices of protest and dissent will never be heard whilst the likes of Harris and Jones act as mediators for the soft left media.

Well maybe we don’t need mediators or translators, maybe we don’t need people to speak on our behalf or articulate our  views to make them understood or contextualised. The media simply reinforces its own prejudices and stereotypes and by refusing even to admit that ‘the proles’ can speak for themselves, allows those who claim to speak on ‘our’ behalf to construct yet another layer of myth and misrepresentation.

As a wise man once said ‘socialism is born from the guts of experience not from the pages of books.’

Jews & Royalty

Panini’s ‘Rabbis Of The World’ collection failed to match the popularity of ‘Euros 2012’

What follows is the gut wrenching transcript of Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sack’s ‘Thought For The Day’ transmitted on Radio 4 in the run up to the Jubilee’s Nuremberg style propaganda exercise. Now, I’m not Jewish but I do have distant relatives from Cheetham Hill in the tailoring business. Maybe there are some Jews who believe that their ‘community’ exists as a seperate ethnic or ‘racial’ group rather than simply a religious preference. But then there are some people who believe in Aryans,  Nubians, Scousers and bigfoot. 

The descendants of Shem may lay claim to a land and a God that say is theirs by right or by origin but that’s their shtick. Yes, I know that Hitler and other racist nutters saw them as ‘other’ as ‘sub-human’ and killed Jews in their millions but they were self-deluded too and refused to believe that both the Germans and the Jews were descended from the same bunch of monkey fucking cavemen. 

What most ‘Jews’ if they call themselves such, should be offended by are people like the chief rabbi who claim to speak for all of them. Big Jews, small Jews, white Jews, black Jews, ginger Jews, gay Jews, Jews for Jesus and Jews for Palestine, orthodox and progressive, Zionist and Communist. In all the gallons of revisionist, sycophantic spew that we had wade through the other week, this struck as by far the most toe curlingly creepy.  

“Among my first memories, I was four at the time, was of Her Majesty becoming the Queen. My father went out to buy a television – a huge piece of furniture with a tiny screen – so that we could watch the coronation. In my first days at school we were taught the national anthem and I can remember thinking that the words “long to reign over us” were about the weather, which was why England was so wet.

Start with a joke, Johnny. Reign/Rain – you’re no Lenny Bruce but this’ll have em eating out of your hand.  

She reigned, I thought, exceptionally well, and so she has in the true sense for sixty years. Jews are intensely loyal to the Queen. Every week in synagogue we say a prayer for her and her family. Each time we see her in person we say a special blessing, and tomorrow we’ll be saying a special prayer for the diamond jubilee.

Well speak for yerself Sacksy. I’m sure there are plenty of jews (and gentiles of course) who despise the queen and the royal family. Ah but you’re one of the special people who see her in person. Oooh get you! Not that you’re in any way boastful, as that would be bad form for a humble chief rabbi. Why do you say a special blessing anyway? What has the queen ever done for you?

Two thousand years ago the rabbis said, pray for the welfare of the monarch for were it not for respect for him or her, people would eat one another alive.

Ah, so it’s all monarchs not just the protestant christian Anglican jew murdering monarchs of England. Gotta love them royals eh? King David himself was a King after all and Kings are really great people. If it wasn’t for kings and queens we’d all be cannibals and that’s a scientific fact dating way back to the time of the Pharoahs and the Caesars who were such nice people.

Strong words; but ones Jews and others feel in their very bones. My late father came here from Poland. My mother’s family came from Lithuania. Had Britain not let them in they would have died in the Holocaust, and I would never have been born. For us Britain’s tolerance and traditions of fairness aren’t something we take for granted. They are the very things that allow us to live without fear. And they are embodied, personified in her Majesty the Queen.

OK, they MAY have died in the holocaust and probably WOULD have but y’know Britain didn’t go to war to save the Jews or defend democracy, they went to war because they HAD to, because they had economic interests to defend. This British ‘tolerance’ also applies to other nations y’know and what’s so good about ‘tolerance’ anyway, is tolerance defined as not gassing someone? Yay for UK! And if ANYONE personifies tolerance it’s her majesty, that very tolerant woman who spends so much time tolerating her kids and grandkids and normal non-royal people.    

For most of us she’s the human face of national identity, the unifying presence at the heart of British life, to whom we feel loyalty whichever way we vote, and regardless of class, colour, culture or creed. It was intensely moving on Tuesday of this week in the House of Lords to hear Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Zoroastrian peers speak of how much she means to each of our communities, and we need that unifying presence all the more, the more diverse we become.

This is the WindsorPLC ‘communities of all faiths’ we’re all in it together strategy. Listen, we know there are some killjoy lefties out there and that by having the queen as head of the state church, it could maybe look as if all those horrid catholics and muslims and jews and darkies might not love her as much as every single right-thinking white person but that’s a lie because EVERYONE  Loves Raymond. Make sure you put that in your speech ‘Lord’ Sacks, that’s why we made you the nation’s Top Jew.   

For sixty years the Queen has spoken gently to the better angels of our nature. Hers has been the quiet heroism of service, the dignity of dedication to the common good, the good that’s so much bigger and nobler than self interest.

Bleeeeeurrrggggghhhhh! I’m 46 years of age the Queen has NEVER once spoken gently to the better angels of MY nature (no doubt because I don’t have any). Define ‘heroism.’ Define ‘dignity.’ Define ‘dedication.’ (that’s whay you need, if you want to be the best, if you want to beat the rest!). I’ll give you a thousand names from my own life who have displayed all these qualities more manifestly than the queen. As for self-interest. The queen’s not self-interested? No way, she gets out of bed because she loves YOU.   

She makes us a little better than we might otherwise have been.

Listen mate, she may have made YOU a little better than you might otherwise have been. I’d have been the same snarly, militant bastard with or without her lad.

A third century rabbi used to say: where you find greatness there you find humility, and that has been her Majesty’s greatness. May God bless her, for she has truly blessed us.

Another rabbi used to say ‘I am humble of heart, you can only get to God through me’ so let’s go easy on the humility eh? You can be great and humble, only if others say iit’s so, otherwise that would look like boastfulness and self-interest and we know her Majesty isn’t in it for the castles and the mansions and the holidays and the cars and the feasts and the servants and the adulation and the parades and the ribbon cutting and the millions and millions and millions hoarded away in offshore bank accounts. No way, only a cynic would say that. God may bless her but that’s His problem.

Maybe J-Sac’s just too assimilated to notice that the Windsors haven’t always been massive fans of his tribe and that far from being the embodiment of good old British tolerance and fair play, the royals and their paymasters in the city kind of enslaved millions of people and stole their land much as the Egyptians and the Babylonians and the Greeks and the Romans enslaved and exploited Judea way back in the day.

Martin Amis & The State of Islington

Even ‘chavs’ and rapists can win the lottery you know – that’s why it’s called a fucking lottery.

Martin Amis is a gifted writer. He knows loads of dead long words. He can string em together pretty well too. But he’s no James Kelman. Whereas Kelman is always described as a ‘working class Glaswegian’ writer, Amis never gets called an ‘upper class London writer’ and whilst Kelman gets plenty of stick from the critocracy for his depiction of ‘the proletariat,’ Amis is allowed free reign to vent his public school spleen on those he sneeringly portrays as slovenly, shallow, almost sub-human, as if Wayne and Waynetta Slob were real life ‘Walford’ characters. This is reality filtered through layer upon layer of media misrepresentation, class prejudice and wilful ignorance.

Kelman at his best ranks alongside other Celtic lyricists like James Joyce, Dylan Thomas and Sam Beckett whereas ‘Marty’ is a mere essayist with delusions to literature. Take two books, Kelman’s Booker winning ‘How Late it Was, How Late’ and Amis’s ‘ ‘Money’ and the gap in both talent and humanity becomes clear. Kelman is sneered at by the type of critic who worship at the Amish altar because he uses the word ‘cunt’ too much and is accused of writing in the Glasgow dialect as an anti-intellectual provocation. Amis’s own gimmicks such as using backwards dialogue and satirical character and brand names are simply the tell tale signs of a master. John Self. Will Self. How very Nee-chah!

His latest book, ‘Lionel Asbo (he’s ‘with it’ Mart, ASBO being such a 2012 phenomenon they’ve recently been replaced by SCUMBOs) is obviously based on ‘Super Chav’ Michael Carroll who won £9.7 million on the National Lottery much to the Daily Mail’s disgust. Amis’s character wins a larger amount, £139 million and the novel apparantly looks at the culture of  “surfaces, trivialities and vulgarities ” that surrounds the Rooneyesque ‘hero’ of the title.

Rooney ofcourse and his wife, Colleen come in for plenty of stick from the self-elected moral guardians of the ‘free press.’ How dare these two scouse guttersnipes dare to earn vast fortunes despite their lowly backgrounds, their vulgar displays of wealth and their lack of intellect. All these perceived ‘flaws’ could be levelled at the royal family ofcourse or anyone else who inherits wealth from their parents (Amis for example) and at least Wayne in particular can claim to be one of the very few truly gifted players this country has produced for a generation.  He is paid according to his skills whereas the royals are rewarded simply for being born into a series of ‘arranged/forced’ marriages that would shame the most conservative Pakistani patriarch. The type that Amis really hates and regards as the ‘enemy’ despite his own rather obnoxious views on women.

Amis desperately wants to be regarded as some kind of wise teller of truths, a man who can see the big picture but his most infamous essays on pornography and islamism have exposed him as just another narrow minded, upper middle class, frightened bigot who views the world in terms of ‘us’ and ‘we’ and ‘our’ rather than as individuals capable of existing beyond the confines of a subjective national identity. Amis tells fellow Oxbridge sneerer, Paxman On last night’s Newnight how proud he is to be English but his version of ‘Englishness’ is as selective and unrepresentative as Cameron’s or Miliband’s.

Like his great pal and fellow sneerer, Chris Hitchens,  Amis didn’t really get on with the type of upper class English gels he was supposed to breed with and once he gets goosed by an American groupie, it liberates him from the repressive sexlessness of the British. But the boys and girls of inner city Britain have always fucked and boozed and drugged themselves into oblivion so there’s nothing new about Lionel, as there was nothing novel about Hogarth’s despiction of Georgian gin wives 250 years ago. This may appal the ‘refined’ tastes of the middle classes but Binge Out Britain has a long and noble history dating right back to Stonehenge mushy sessions.

Amis, like Paul Dacre and others of their class and generation, have a puritanical and hypocritical disgust for young, working class women, the type who get their tits out in Spanish and Greek holidays resorts, stumble across city streets in high heels, vomitting onto the pavement and have the temerity to have sex and raise children without the safety net of a rich sugar daddy or professionally qualified husband to take care of them. It’s OK for debs and starlets to live lives of shallow sensualness as their brand of debauchery is socially acceptable to the wannabe aristos of Middle England. Amis and his elitist chums, the male, post-war, public school academics, writers and politicians  who now hold economic and cultural power fear female sexuality yet desire it too. This makes them feel insecure and unmanly and so they take it out on those who live ‘on the surface.’

Lionel Asbo is the anti-Amis, perhaps like John Self, the ‘anti-hero’ of ‘Money’ the kind of man that Marty secretly wants to be, living for immediate gratification, existing from hour to hour, day to day, spending, fucking, snorting; y’know enjoying himself without all the intellectual angst or moral hang ups of the chattering classes. Morality is a middle class concept ofcourse, something the ‘lower orders’ know nothing of. As Oscar put it;

“Really, if the lower orders don’t set us a good example, what on earth is the use of them? They seem, as a class, to have absolutely no sense of moral responsibility.”

Now Ozzy was speaking with his tongue firmly stuck up Bosey’s arse but he was reflecting the same sentiments that exist widely in the present political and cultural spheres of both the left and right. What ‘right’ do those like Carroll or Colleen, Wayne or Waynetta have to breed and spend and breathe and spoil this land; the state of England. Amis ofcourse lives in America and therefore has some neck moaning about the state of anywhere. Kelman’s lives are real lives, lived in real cities, whereas Amis’s lives are unreal, lived in a sensationalised and superficial tabloid distortion. Despite the vast amount of media space devoted to him and his ‘work’ Amis is little more than a ‘thinking man’s Jeffrey Archer’ for the Islington literati set.

Maybe we can discuss it over canapes at Hay eh?

The soft left and patriotism – the old lie pt 984

It’s Johnny English – super patriot!


Ed Milipede’s latest attempt to suck up to editors of the right wing press is yet another example of how the New Labour strategists continue to pitch their ideological tent in the shifting sands of the so-called middle ground. Never mind the Murdoch/News International scandal and the utter contempt felt by millions for the gutter press, ‘Red’ Ed is still terrified of being portrayed as an old skool, lefty rabble rouser and so his speeches now centre around what he considers vote winning core policies such as ‘English’ identity.

Here’s the first part of Ed Miliband’s speech on “Defending the Union in England” and my own notes in italics….


It is wonderful to be here in the Royal Festival Hall. Built for the Festival of Britain in 1951, just a year before Her Majesty the Queen ascended to the throne.

Ascended to the throne? Like Jesus ascended to heaven? I’ve heard of suceeding to the throne but not ascending unless the Queen really was chosen by God personally and is indeed not of mortal woman born.  

1951 and the Festival of Britain and the Coronation in 1953 were landmark events for our country. They helped to shape its modern identity. 2012 is a year when once again that identity is in the spotlight. This week we commemorated the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It was a fantastic celebration.

So the coronation helped shape ‘modern Britain’ did it? In what way did this feudal ritual map out Britain’s modernity? Well, he had to get his ‘I love the Queen’ credentials in I suppose, don’t let the Mail get him on that one. And less of the ‘our’ and ‘we’ lad.

I thought it spoke to so many qualities of our country: Our sense of community. Our gentle sense of patriotism. Our stoicism and sense of humour in the face of terrible weather. And the Union flag flying everywhere.

As James Naughties in an unusually prickly interview for such an establishment toady asked him on Radio4, why are these so-called ‘qualities’ English? Don’t other abstract nations have these abstract qualities too and are they true any way? Ah but do they have the union flag? Not the union jack, this is aimed at those unionists who want to keep the union of England and Scotland together because well, Labour relies on those Scottish MPs to get elected.  

In two days time things will be a bit different. The European Football Championship will start. England is there. But not Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. It won’t be about the Union flag so much any more. Here in England, the cross of St George will go up. It will fly from houses, cars, shops and pubs. Then, before we know it, the Olympics and Paralympics will be upon us. And we will be back to Team GB and the Union flag once more.

Tone it down a bit here, don’t wanna piss off the jocks, taffs and paddys, we’re all in it together, part of one big team GBPLC family after all.

This is an incredible year to live in this country. It is a once in a generation summer. But these multiple allegiances, the coming and going of flags, raise serious questions too. What does this summer say about the United Kingdom? What does it say about our identity as a people in 2012?

Er, it says that people who feel so desperate to celebrate mythical tribal identities are shallow and needy.

The irony is that in one part of the United Kingdom, Scotland, the debate about who we are is in full force. To stay in the United Kingdom or to leave? To be Scottish or British or both? But this debate about nationhood and identity should not simply be confined to one part of our country. Those of us who believe in the United Kingdom must make the case throughout our country. That’s why today, as we stand between the Jubilee, the European Championships and the Olympics, I want to reflect on who we are as a country, and where we should be trying to go.

This is typical reclaim the union jack bullshit – what about those of us who don’t recognise the artificial nation state as a form of phoney identity, who view economic ‘class’ as more unifying than bogus borders and invented ‘cultures.’ Where am I going Ed?

My case is this: First, we are stronger together as a United Kingdom and that essential strength comes from our ability to embrace multiple identities. The nationalist case, wherever we find it, is based on the fallacy that one identity necessarily erodes another. I believe we can all be proud of our country, the United Kingdom. And of the nations that comprise it.

Multiple identities? How come the muslims are always being told they must accept being British first and muslim second? How come those from other countries and former colonies are browbeaten into accepting a severe and selective form of Britishness that they must sign up to and why should this apply to ANYONE? Why should I be ‘proud of my country?’ it’s like being proud of being left handed, I had fuck all to do with it.  

Second, that means England too. And those on the left have not been clear enough about this in the recent past. We must be in the future. We should embrace a positive, outward looking version of English identity. Finally, we should also proudly talk the language of patriotism. It is part of celebrating what binds us together and what we project outwards to the world.

Here’s his ‘Paul Dacre please don’t hurt me!’ pitch *(the Mail ofcourse dismissed it as mere vote grabbing – see below). The left need to re-define themselves as patriots, English patriots, fly the cross of St George, support the monarchy, the armed forces and the political and economic power base because that wins votes in marginal seats.

Let me start with my own story. All my life I have had cause to be grateful to our country. Neither my Mum nor my Dad came from Britain. As I have said on other occasions, they arrived here as refugees from the Nazis. My Dad was 16 when he caught one of the last boats from Ostend to Britain. He was a Jew.

Play the holocaust card. Very grateful to the Brits, y’know the ones who pretended not to know what was going on in the death camps and sent boats back for jews to die rather than allow them into our Christian protestant country.

German soldiers were moving through Belgium. His very life under threat. Britain took him in. He joined the Royal Navy, trained for part of the time in Scotland, and then settled in London. My mother arrived in Britain having spent the war in hiding under a false name, sheltered by heroic people. Her father was murdered because he was Jewish. Britain took her in too. It offered them both not only refuge but a new home. And it gave them a place to raise a family. That was a wonderful gift. But Britain offered my mum and dad more than that. Our country allowed them to stay true to who they were. They did not have to hide their past. They did not have to pretend they were someone else. Jewish but not religious.

Yes, Ed’s arl fellar, Ralph was a well-known Commie writer who would no doubt shudder at the way in which his two sons have ditched any pretence of socialism (never mind communism) to live in this new left Utopia. What was so special or unique about this ‘British’ tolerance as if not gassing his parents and allowing them to declare their jewishness is somehow noble and virtuous? There’s a chasm between outright genocide and the ‘gentle patriotism’ so beloved of Miliband Jnr. They were ‘allowed’ to stay true to who they were. Big deal. What’s so ‘British’ about that? It’s a pity Miliband’s mates with their union jacks don’t want to allow others to be who they are.     

I am a Londoner by birth. I lived in Leeds during formative years growing up. And became a long-suffering Leeds United fan. I spent time in America and taught at Harvard for a while. Added the Boston Red Sox to my sports teams.

Hey, he’s a man of the people Ed, he likes soccer ball and baseball and taught at Harvard for a while. Harvard, that well known centre for meritocratic excellence. Good on yer, Ed, youz got some credentials lad.

I got elected as MP for Doncaster North. Fell in love with Justine, not Jewish, from Nottingham and we had our two boys. So you could say my family have not sat under the same oak tree for the last 500 years. This is who I am. The son of a Jewish refugee and Marxist academic. A Leeds supporter, from North London. A baseball fan. Somebody who looks a bit like Wallace from Wallace and Gromit.

Oh, he’s mentioned his dad and the ‘M’ word. But hey, Justine’s not Jewish so y’know he’s like totally open to gentiles yeah? And he’s an MP, just like that! No family have sat under the same oak tree for 500 years prick! We’re all monkey fucks from the jungle.

If spin doctors could design a politician, I suspect he wouldn’t look like me. But I know what I am proud of. I am proud to represent the people of Doncaster North. I am proud to lead the Labour Party. I am proud to be Jewish. I am proud to be English. And I am proud to be British too.

Look I know I get stick for my appearance but I’m the son of my father, not a GCI identikit smoothy like Blair, Cameron or Clegg, my nose is flat, my hair is shit, my voice is annoying but at least I’m not plastic like the others eh? Meet Mr. Ed, he walks like a geek, he talks like a geek, he grunts and squeeks and squarks like a geek, but he’s a human being too and he’s so very proud of his own ‘mulitple identities’ as a Leeds fan from North London,  an MP, a party leader, a Jew, an Englishman and a Briton. Bravo!!!

Now there’s much more of this hysterical and selective revisionism in Milibean’s speech and if you really want to, it’s worth reading just to see how Ed’s spin doctors are going to fight the next election, not by offering even a New Labour consensus vision of ‘Modern Britain’ but by capitulating to the ‘we’re all in it together’ myth of collective effort and mutual rewards.  Go get ’em Ed, the right wing press is gonna love this shit………………

Oh dear!

Y’know what Ed, no matter how much you suck up to these fuckers, they will always despise you with every fibre of their hollow husks. You are their enemy no matter how you cloak yourself, so let’s get this straight, those union members and leaders who you so despise and lecture fund your party and they don’t want another 13 years of Blair/Brownism after the chaos caused by their flexible market/no restrictions on the city policies. You better start looking after the interests of the millions of core Labour voters who have derserted the party over the past three elections rather than chasing the floaters of middle England or maybe they’ll donate their millions on someone who will.


Trading Places – The Daily Mail, race and class.

Type in the words ‘middle class’ into the Daily Heil’s on-line search engine and it’ll give you a staggering 38,608 results found. Now call me a typically bone idle, prole but I only went through a few pages and what a depressing experience it was. What the Mail feeds on is the irrational belief that its ‘middle class’ core readership are somehow being singled out and ripped off by illegal immigrants, benefit scroungers, sneering liberal metrosexuals, work-shy trade unionists and anyone else who doesn’t conform to their narrow, selective concept of national identity and ‘British’ values.

Here are some the links to various articles that the search threw up….

Middle class children have ‘better genes’ says former schools chief…and we just have to accept it.

It’s not just chavs  who cheat at benefits! Those looking to milk the system ARE NOT JUST THE SINGLE MOTHERS OF FIVE IN COUNCIL HOUSES EXPECTING THE STATE TO PICK UP THE BILL FOR THEIR IRRESPONSIBLE LIFESTYLES, even the middle classes are looking to claim benefits to which they have little entitlement.

BBC axed My Family for being too middle class says show’s star, Zoe Wanamaker.

Nanny state targets middle class drinkers with £10m campaign.

Middle class students punished by yhr great grant and fees squeeze.

Thousands of middle class students WILL lose out in university equlaity drive warns UCAS chief

Middle class youngsters barred from applying for internships at Whitehall and the police because they are white.

Middle class ‘foodies’ who forage for exotic mushrooms ‘could threaten our woodlands’

Why did middle class security guard turn into an islamic extremist who won’t be seen on TV with his mother if she’s not wearing a veil?

Want work experience at the Foreign Office? Not if you’re a middle class, white male!

‘There’s nothing wrong with being white and middle class’ Michael McIntyre hits back at his comedy critics.

Who does Homeland security think poses the greatest risk? Video portrays white middle class as the most likely terrorists.

On and on it goes, page after page of this whining drivel.  Yes, we all know the Mail’s an easy target and exists to stir up the  impotent rage of its suburban readership. These people, its beloved ‘white middle class’ (lower and middle-middle class ofcourse, not the Telegrpah and Times reading upper-middle) are the ones who cling most desperately to the 80s Tory tradition of Thatcherism yet want it both ways. They claim to represent the ‘hard working, law abiding, tax payers’ but also worship at the feet of lazy, idiotic aristocrats, corporate tax dodgers and  dumb celebrities.

They are truly terrified of being cast into the same economic pit as the plebs which feeds into this hysterical demonisation of the ‘other.’ This fear is exploited by the real money men (the publishers and owners)  who ratchet up the divide and rule rhetoric in a twisted attempt to cast this ‘silent majority’ as the ones who are being victimised and discriminated against.  Despite every branch of the establishment being populated and governed by middle class white people, THEY are the ones who are powerless and voiceless.

The Mail, Express, Telegraph, Times, Spectator, FT, Sun, Economist spew this cynical tide of bile day after day and then they the balls to moan about ‘far right yobboes’ and ‘racist killers.’ The Mail even tried to gain kudos for its ‘Murderers’ headline in the wake of the first Stephen Lawrence trial, as if their relentless anti-black reporting of the past 40 odd years hadn’t help to create a climate of distrust, fear and hate amongst those ‘white working class’ areas where black faces were viewed with hostility and suspicion. No, they don’t take any responsibility for those ‘working class’ types who might actually act on the twisted views spewed out by Littlejohn and his ilk of foaming-at-the-mouth hate preachers.

Type ‘black males’ or ‘black youth’ into the Mail’s search engine and reports such as this maybe contribute to such prejudices.

Black and male are bywords for failure says equality chief  – black maleness has become the definition of failure in society the lead of government race watchdog will claim today.

Black youths from broken homes ‘who turn to street crime’ – black teenagers commit high levels of street crime and carry guns because they come from broken homes and have little faith in the police it has been claimed.

More than half of young black men able to work in Britain are unemployed government reveals.

Don’t blame Oxford – the real racists are the hand-wringing liberals who expect black pupils to fail.

Perhaps the most telling of all these selectively headlined reports was this one however,

Black minority children watch 50% more TV per day than white children (and almost 90% have sets in their bedroom) study finds.

Researchers at Northwestern University (who?) CLAIM that minority youth astonishingly spend more than half their day consuming media content, a rate that’s four and a half hours greater than their white counterparts.

LINK :–study-finds.html

This report was an American study but is used to apply to all black children and the message it sends out is pretty clear; blacks are inherently lazy and feckless, preferring to wallow in their pits watching telly or the internet than studying hard like white kids to improve their lot in life. That’s the reason black kids are poor and why they turn to crime but don’t blame the economic system that enslaved their forebears and forced them into a cycle of deprivation. No, it’s the hand-wringing liberals with their ‘equality’ agenda who are really to blame.

In ‘Trading Places’ Eddie Murphy and Dan Ackroyd are used as pawns in a one dollar bet between two old money Wall Street stock brokers. The basis of the bet as that Ackroyd, with all his wealth, education, contacts and ‘breeding’ will succeed in life whatever’s thrown at him whereas Murphy is doomed to failure because (in the words of one of the rich, white patriarchs) ‘he’s a negro!’

As a parable on capitalism and social mobility, luck and intellect, prejudice and opportunity it has some fine moments but never once does it question the basic tenets of capitalism that creates the divide betwen the Ivy League tennis club types and the street beggars who share the same New York streets.

The lesson is simple; work hard enough and accept the system and you will succeed; it’s the lie that has sustained The American Dream for three hundred years and it’s the same lie spouted by the Mail and the right, these lucky beneficiaries of generations of wealth, mostly stolen or brutally exploited from the sweat of the enslaved and the poor, being handed down to them.

No wonder they’re scared, imagine who’d they’d cope if there really was a meritocracy and they couldn’t buy themselves and their kids a head-start in life.