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.

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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.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22506493

“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.”