24 May 2009

Daily Chat 24/05/09

On this day in 1626, Peter Minuit bought the island of Manhattan from the Lanape for 60 guilders (about $1000 in today's terms).  In 1738, John Wesley comes over all warm and fuzzy at a Moravian church meeting in Aldersgate, leading to Methodism.  In 1956, the first Eurovision Song Contest is held in Lugano, Switzerland.  Lys Assia takes the title for the host country with the song "Refrain".  Lots of birthdays today:  the pride of Hibbing, Minnesota, Robert Zimmerman; Patti LaBelle, Jim Broadbent; Alfred Molina; Rosanne Cash; Kristin Scott-Thomas; and Eric Cantona.  It's Independence Day in Eritrea.  Here's some of Mr. Zimmerman's work:


  1. OK then, I'm in premod again as 3wisefish for questioning the Guardian's judgement in letting Beatrix Campbell write about child abuse. Anyone unfamiliar with the story can catch it here...


    and although I'm uneasy about linking to the Mail...since 'radical Marxist feminist', Campbell, was happy enough to take the Express's shilling for long enough, I'm not too bothered.

    The woman is a fuckin disgrace.

    Personally, I'm not sure that Marxist feminist isn't an oxymoron. Shouldn't a proper Marxist shun any other identity tag in the cause of unity and solidarity? Maybe not...anyhow,be that as it may, flaky Marxist or no..there's never any excuse for joining a line-dancing club.

    Here's what I wrote...

    ###I see my post has been deleted. It described Beatrix Campell as totally unsuited to comment on child abuse and thoroughly discredited on this topic. I'm not sure that this view is even contentious. She bought the whole satanic abuse fiasco hook line and sinker, possibly influenced by her idiotic partner who then went on to further embarrass herself in various other misdiagnoses of abuse. If the Guardian is to continue to allow this woman to comment on child abuse, then they are dreaming if they think this sort of criticism can be censored out of existence.

    Her pronouncements and interventions on child abuse have proved repeatedly to be biased, misguided and harmful. Why do you continue to allow her to comment on this topic? It would be no less ridiculous if you commissioned Nick Griffin to opine on improving race relations or Richard Dawkins on ecumenical matters. I really think you need to explain this.

    I can only think that there's someone on the Guardian staff who was once a would-be radical student feminist and regards her as some sort of Svengali figure worthy of attention. Frankly, she's a fuckin joke. A predictable one trick pony with only one circus ring left available to her: CIF. By all means publish her views, but if you do, you must appreciate that criticism of her past record on this topic and her degree of authority will always take precedence over the contents of the article, just as it would with Griffin or Dawkins.

    When you finally get in touch with Daffy Duck to commit his thoughts on the MPs' expenses scandal, will you regard it as off topic or vexatious if I say, "hang on a minute...you're a cartoon duck with a record of notable stupidity, why are you on here?".###

    And this gets me pre-modded?

    CIF is worse than ever. The various statements which seemed to offer a conciliatory gesture or two and hinted at a shift in policy were a complete sham. They remain just as censorious and jealous of their 'authority' as before.

    Criticism of ATL writers seems virtually impossible which leads to a wholly indefensible situation whereby we're offered admission to a parallel universe in which, for instance, Toynbee hasn't spent the past year or so flipping about like a beached dolphin, Campbell is regarded as sane and Harry Phibbs's past record as a racist loon is expunged from the record.

    Instead, we can only engage with their present outpourings of delusion. As football pundits everywhere will tell you: "You're only as good as your last game." At CIF, they take it a stage further. "You're only as good as your last game and any reference to previous performances is irrelevant and unwelcomed."

  2. monkeyfish
    Mate. You outflank people like you're George Best, then show them their failings, then demand that they raise their game, then tell them what a shower of shit they are. Good. Fuck the arrogant lighweights. But look. It's a paper that was worth buying once, because of world class reporters like Ed Vulliamy, and even in the present, because they still have pockets of great journalism, e.g. their Saturday Review section.

    What they should do is sack 99% of their CiF writers. They could easily have if they chose, the calibre of writer they can provenly hire at the Review, or some of the freelancers writing for TLS, or LRB. And they should then publish about 95% feweer articles than they do.

    FFS we've seen how well this formula can work at B&W - with one writer - Ophelia Benson.

    And maybe the trouble is, perhaps, rather than being a diletante like me, who pretty much gave up on politics about ten years ago, is you have only one mode: jugular. The finishing remark - Daffy Duck - was absolute fucking genius. Have you considrered writing ? Seriously ? Jesus you've got a talent mate; perhaps you don't realise how much you embody the terms "withering" and "fisking".

    And if it's any use, I hope you stuff Chelsea buy the way.

  3. Morning, monkeyfish - yep, ATL criticism is a pre-mod offence. See my post over at the other place...

    Do you know how to edit your comments on here btw? I want to remove a couple of posts from last night...

  4. No, there is a new policy in place, Seaton jumps in to have a go at those who disagree with ATL authors/the party line or to cozy up with the resident toady.

    Otherwise things remain much as they have always been:

    you're free to say, pretty much, what you want if you agree with the certain favoured views, but will get modded into oblivion if you don't (it's such a joke that I often wonder if some of the more fanatical fringe commments are actually commissioned by the Cif editors, so as to generate as many responses as possible);

    ATL writers are allowed to carry on citing the same discredited statistics & reports, over & over again, despite the Graun having issued corrections, on more than one occasion & pointing this out is still deemed to be inappropriate or off topic;

    ATL pieces that disagree with the general consensus, amongst the Cif in crowd (above & below the line) tend to get shoved off into limbo, so that you can only read them if you know nwere to look & the debate is effectively killed;

    In every case where the ATL follow the party line, & the author is savaged by the majority of posters in the BTL debate; it will only be from amongst those comments that support the author that the Cif will select "the best of the comments"; even when the "best" are nothing of the sort, never from a dissenting poster (see Jay's football analogy post in the porn threads, over 1200 recommendations & not only ignored, but deleted by the mods).

    Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose, as the old addage goes.

  5. sartrecastic24 May, 2009 11:34

    As I learneded in my AS Sociology class (blame bad careers advice), Marxist-feminists aren't Marxists, they're feminists.

    That should clear it up.

  6. Hiya Monkeyfish,
    Fuck em all at Cif. They probably sussed you anyway.
    I haven't read her piece but am slightly surprised at your venom against B Campbell- I used to be a bit of a fan but not really read her lately.
    What's her back story- who's her partner- Duncan?
    Of course they're not going to sack their writers cos they do as they're told and don't rock The Guardian's boat.
    Let's face it- we're in the minority as far as that paper's concerned.
    Cheers- enjoy your Sunday and forget the fuckers...

  7. Hank, contact the website owner if it's that important. But it's not, usually.

  8. Actually, there's a dustbin icon next to the date/time our own posts (not others'). Use that if you want to ditch anything.

  9. Campbell is a commissioner for the 'Women's National Commission'. This organisation's website states
    'Our work is valued and welcomed by the UK Government and our status allows us to present findings and reports directly to Ministers and senior officials.'

    Apparently her involvement in the Cleveland fiasco has not harmed her standing in certain circles.

  10. Thanks, BW, but the dustbin icon only appears if you post using a URL. I didn't, so no dustbin.

    Any ideas scherf?

  11. Hank, is it comments here or the phonebooth?

  12. The comments at 20.56 and 21.23 on last night's Untrusted thread, scherf..

  13. Do you want them deleted now, Hank?

  14. Yes please mate.

  15. Cheers scherfig.

    Right, I'm off to enjoy the sunshine. Have a good day, all, and

    C'mon Villa!!

  16. Heard about the lesbian dinosaur ?




  17. Bitterweed!
    Mouth! Soap!
    Goodness me!

  18. C'mon Villa!!

    Yep, second that one. I remember going to St James' Park (they still can't use apostrophes properly- strangely enough Exeter play at St James's Park)in the early eighties and there were about 5000 people there. Big Club, 'Toon Army' my arse...they're delusional.If they go down, that place will be deserted. Hopefully,they're due a good ol' reality check today.

    Actually, I've nothing against Geordies, it's just the last two occasions I've been up there, some little twat has ripped off my wing mirror. Musta been through 6 or 7 in the last five years.

    Thanks for the review BW. You've probably got a point re. the jugular comment but sometimes they ask for it, sometimes I'm hung over, sometimes pissed and the rest of the time it just comes out that way anyway.

    Taking the kids down the woods in a minute for a game of Hansel and Gretel. They've been grating on me all morning, woke me at at half six to adjudicate on a remote control dispute. They better hope the birds leave the breadcrumbs alone or they're walking home.

  19. :)
    See you lot later, off to see me mum

  20. Crafty Geezer24 May, 2009 13:33

    Oops, - I'd better be off then, Mrs Bitterweed.

  21. Hank if you're logged in to t'other place you are automatically logged in here and get a dustbin!

  22. Bitterweed! really!!!!

    Actually really funny! :-D

  23. LordSummerisle24 May, 2009 15:49

    On the subject of moderation, I've just received an email from one of the moderators about the removal of my post on the George Galloway thread (mentioned on an earlier daily thread here) ... I asked what was wrong with it and the reply was essentially "Nothing that I can see. I'll get it reinstated."

    Result! The system works ... sometimes ;-)

  24. Bloody hell, Lord S! They must have substitute staff in for the bank holiday weekend.

  25. Happened to me too LordS, not very long ago.. It was on the Bindel/Burchill thread. I popped off a quick email querying the deletion of one of my posts. It took em about 12 hrs to reply... but they did, and the post was reinstated...

  26. Hi Everybody

    I’ve been keeping my nose out of CiF and The Untrusted recently, concentrating on getting my college work done, and thankfully making some progress.

    So I thought I deserved a little “me time”, this afternoon, and what do I find – I’ve almost missed Bob Dylan’s birthday! I’m sure it’s too late to send him a card now.

    As I occasionally mention, I was born to the sound of Dylan going electric, and he’s got to be one of my all time heroes.

    For anyone who’s forgotten what he sounded (and looked) like back then, check this out:


    That’s what it’s all about...

  27. monkeyfish: your pasting of Beatrix Campbell was spot on; well argued etc as we would by now expect. I guess that, in part, is why it’s been deleted.

    Not saying they’re jealous that some BTL contributors can actually write better than many ATLiners, but you’ve got to wonder.

    Something you didn’t mention was Campbell’s fawning over Diana fucking Spencer, and her being well up for beatifying her. That’s feminist/Marxism that is, unless it’s Marxist/feminism. Or maybe it’s just nonsense...

    Hope you and your kids enjoyed your walk in the woods. It’s a lovely sunny Sunday in London. Where are you and what’s it like with you?

    Bitterweed: liked the joke, but, extending Lenny Bruce’s point that a cocksucker doesn’t have to be a gay man, someone who licks pussy doesn’t have to be a lesbian, do they?

    If so, I’m obviously REALLY confused about my sexuality and I’ll have to rethink my attitude to Julie Bindel. Don’t know if I could cope.

  28. As I see it a Marxist feminist is one that sees men as the ruling class.

    So yes Marxist feminists are - feminists.

    The proposition is a ludicrous distortion of Marxism.

    It leads to the sort of policies Nulab are churning out. Apart from maternity services i can't think of a single issue that does not effect men as much as women. I do label myself as a feminist in the context of issues that effect working class women but feel its important to engage men as well as we are stronger united as a class than divided.

    The old slogan "an injury to one is an injury to all" works for all members of the working class men, women, black, white, asian.

    As to multiculturalism it has failed because it was implemented in a highly divisive way celebrating differences should mean no discrimination because of differences but it should also have celebrated our common humanity and discouraged the formation of separate communities.

    The task of the leftseems to me is to start building real class unity across the racial, religious and gender divide,

    Its not going to happen overnight and its not a project the guardian is really interested in is it?

    Traditionally it was always a liberal newspaper anyway so its hardly surprising.

    Remember those CND badges 'cat lovers against the bomb' vegetarians against the bomb' etc. There was one called 'Well meaning guardian readers against the bomb'! That was in the 60's why are we surprised!

    Having been overtaken by Nulab ideas I'm not sure if 'well meaning' is appropriate any more.

  29. Ha ha, Diana a Marxist heroine! Am not really familiar with Beatrix Campbell (for a second I got confused and thought she was Beatrix Potter).

    The Ruth Sunderland thread has got me all steamed up - self-hating misogynist that she seems to be!

    But nothing can upset me too much today: weather is absolutely beautiful and LEINSTER DID IT - WELL DONE, LADS!

    (Few nice shots or Horgan's arse didn't hurt either.)

  30. Bloody vile over on Cohen's BNP thread, folks -

    24 May 09, 7:12pm
    Racist pooroldchicken and similar fascist jokers just don't dare articulate their racist views anymore as openly as they used to.

    Not so. By all contemporary liberal interpretations of Racism, I am most certainly racist. In fact I'd be highly offended if you didn't consider me so. It's a badge of honour to me".

  31. mschin

    I'm doing my best! That guy is so full of it, though. "Weasel words" doesn't even begin to describe his style.

    I wonder if he's Simon Darby? He is certainly too bright to be Lee Barnes.

  32. Yikes. I haven't looked at Cohen since last night. Some scary people in this world, aren't there?

  33. And now we have chickenshit defining his racism as exploitative:
    "... wanting my govt to import only as much of the World's over-spill populations which are of direct economic or social benefit to this country ..."

  34. BB

    I'd leave him to it. The way cif's been acting lately, becoming a repository of semi-human crypto-fascists seems a fitting denouement.


    As far as I can see, multiculturalism / identity politics has got it all the wrong way around. The left used to subscribe (in theory) to a universalism which equated to an equality of opportunity, treatment and entitlement. Equality of outcome is not an ideal which can be achieved through planning or legislation.

    Equality of outcome is a fatuous notion. The idea that you can look at the consequences of various policies for different racial, religious or cultural groupings and then in turn devise strategies for their equalisation is just not viable.

    As much as anything, it is unworkable and unpredictable due to the vagaries of fate and the unintended consequence. Also, it leads to a de facto inequity of treatment and opportunity which runs counter to traditional left wing (and indeed liberal) tradition.

    So as well as breeding resentment, providing succour to a otherwise moribund far right and creating divisions within society which militate against the creation of organised and unified working class movement political, it lacks any coherent, self consistent philosophy.

    In as far as it has support, it is from the beneficiaries alone: individual groups who might gain in the short term, their (often self-appointed leaders and the largely middle-class administrators and overseers of the system. It can never aspire to mass support.

    The only option is a return to the traditional left wing notion where parity of opportunity and treatment on an individual basis is the benchmark and entitlement is a function of individual need. Multiculturalism should be dead in the water, it's kept alive by vested interest groups: many of whom, of course, read the Guardian.

  35. I don't subscribe to equality of outcome its just that when I first heard about it multiculturalism meant respect all cultures but above all respect our common humanity. The last(and most important!) bit got lost somehow.But yes fundamentally the concept that all men are brothers.

    It is no surprise that multiculturalism became the monster it is. It has evolved into a very effective version of the divide and rule. Back in the 60's, whatit meant to me was things like not treating someone as stupid because they had a working class or a foreign accent and not forcing white middle class standards of everyone.

    But yes the monster it has become needs to be stuffed into the dustbin of history!

    Equality of outcome is risible its a bit 'Fahrenheit 451' isn't it? Of course "The only option is a return to the traditional left wing notion where parity of opportunity and treatment on an individual basis is the benchmark and entitlement is a function of individual need."

    The guardian is a paper of middle class liberals who like to think they are left wing so of course the will support asinine policies like multiculturism and equality of outcome and and 'positive discrimination'.

    We shouldn't really be surprised by this because that is where the middle class lefties are at the moment.

    WE used to call them 'trendies' in the 70's!

  36. Funny that Anne. Came across many of the same type, "trendy lefties", in the 80's.

    I know precisely what you mean, middle class chatterers going on about positive action for this or that group whiilst at the same time as discussing their investment portfolios & the second home in the south of France.

    Funny thing is that they all had their private health plans & had mapped out how their kids would be going to the best private schools.

    Personally, I always thought that the whole idea of a truly equal society was that we should create a world in which you judge a person on their personal merits & not on the basis of their background, gender, race, job, etc., but, hell, what do I know?

  37. kizbot is the new subject on charlie brookers thread,,your adoring public calls,,

    oh right its sunday,,never on a sunday

  38. GP01 yes exactly - except they didn't have investment portfo;ios in the 70's!