08 August 2010


Angkor Wat - uncredited

Charity sees the need, not the cause.
-German proverb  


  1. Morning all!

    Jen, sorry to hear about your crap day yesterday. Sounds fucking awful. :-(

  2. Morning All!

    a brief visit as I spent most of yesterday horizontal - wiped out from work this week and lots to do today. Glad to see that music was the answer yesterday and few ruffled feathers.

    This is my last word on the subject to Paul - after this, I will have to ignore you as I find it difficult to engage with a closed and angry mind.

    my contention is that your accusations of misogyny were fuelled by a miscandric attitude on your part

    Well, you 'contend' incorrectly. They were not 'accusations' they were observations, formulated on the conclusions of your many posts directed predominantly at female members of this group, which, if I am not mistaken reveal you to have at best, a confused and bitter attitude toward women in general.

    Misandric attitude? Come on Paul, this is just more childish, ill-thought-out deflection on your part.

    Unfortunately, you steadfastly refuse to engage with what I've written over the past 3 or 4 days, because you are unable to face the facts, as someone pointed out, this is an open board, anyone can engage with any subject - you're acting as if I have challenged your masculinity by offering an opinion on your spat with MF and Hank. An annoyance which found its outlet in deeply questionable views on Women and with patronising and downright offensive terminology being directed at myself and other women on here.

    But you justified it by hiding behind text book rad fem dogma

    Please, this is just more simplistic deflection yet again and about the 20th time you've labaelled me as a rad fem

    Like I said before, so what? I really don't give a fig for the 2-dimensional stereotype you are fixated on, but your repeated and innapproriate use of the label serves to reveal a great deal about you.

  3. Morning everyone

    Jen - crap day yesterday? I hope today will be better for you - chin up old bean!!

    Has anyone one read The Spirit Level yet that Nick Cohen is eulogising about today? Is it a "call to arms" as he suggests and are we, at last beginning to see some resistance building up?

    Beautiful quiet morning here - am off for a trudge in the Peak when my ex old man drags himself out of his pit. Laters.

  4. Sheff:

    Haven't read the Spirit Level yet, but have read another book re: Inequality by Wilkinson.

  5. Mornin' all. I hope today's Sherlock is better than last weeks, for those who missed it here's an excerpt from the denoument...

    Sherlock; And I see you are a clever man, too, you have hidden in plain view.

    Taxi Driver; Yes, I see all, like you, I observe and deduce. I saw that BBC drama, you know, with the black guy, Idriss something, well any way it had the same plot as this, surpriseed you hadn't seen it on the i-player Mr Holmes? You'd have had me bang to rights just after the credits eh?

  6. Morning :)

    Whoah 11 o clock now that is what I call a sleep in, especially considering I went to bed before midnight.

    One little night out and I am wiped out, the joys of getting old. ;)

    I am away to my sisters next week for a visit, she doesn't exactly live in a rural idyll (Rickmansworth) but it is a much nicer place than here, might even get a few nice walks in to recharge the batteries so I'm happy.

    Plus playing Auntie Jennifer to three small children will no doubt make me desperate for the solitude of my little flat after a week so it's a win win situation.

    Fingers crossed for some sunshine.

  7. Leni - thats the whole problem isn't it?

    Other people's ideas, however brilliant they seem can only be a guide, we have to relate those ideas to our experience and think for ourselves.

    We may stand on the shoulders of giants but we are obviously viewing the world from a different vantage point.

    Rules, ideas, blueprints are there for the guidance of the wise, sadly there are too many fools who turn those ideas into rigid dogma so much human misery has resulted from this and not just in religion either.

  8. Condems cut free milk for under 5's

    FFS no-one voted for that!

  9. Anne yeah I saw that earlier, it's like a nasty little insider joke isn't it.

  10. Anne

    As I see it we are also looking at a different world - and in many respects ar a different Earth too.

    Ideas - hower valid - evolve. That have to if they are to retain any value.

    Reading Cicero recently - it seemed apposite as we , like Rome at that time, are living in a transition period and need to examine our thinking - poltically and socially.

    At is simplest the challenge of Caesar - wanting personal absolute rule , to Cicero who wished to retain the Republic seems straighr forward.

    The huge flaw in that political debate , as today, was that the republic had lost all sense of politicl morality. The wealth was in very few hands, those of the Patricians, the religious, military and career politicians. The masses were starving and desperate.

    Neither C nor C addressed this. No redistributive ideas at all -just rigidity , fighting ovr power and an empty idea. Cicero was a conservative in the true sense - seeking to retain the existing order.Caesar was probably a sociopath , presenting himself as a populist. He made his fortune as Chief Priest and then as a militarist.

    The masses of the people (always referred to as the mob ) were for the most part worse off than favoured slaves in the rich households - although the majority of the slaves lived desperate lives too.

    Both C + C were murdered, civil war broke out, worse horrors followed.

    Rome was a sham democracy - the people were acted upon, used, bribed for their votes but were ultimately dispensable . The adoption of Christianity as te state religion changed very little in thefollowing centuries.

    Societies have evolved and changed in the intervening centuries, analyses and ideas have come and gone - inequality has remained.

    To continue thinking in an either/or way will fail us again. Politics is about survival , it is about the distribution of resources and wealth, security for the few or the many. It is about money and power and it is about the use of or the empowerment/repression of the majority.

    The blueprints we have are pointers only. Many have pointed towards and created failures and pushed millions into abject povety and misery. These we can reject. Others suggest possibilities and are worth reviewing.

    My own position is simple - but inadequate - my position is to oppose an immoral system, cruelty ad repression as and how I can and to extend a helping hand when I am able.

    I see no great positive political idea around which we can rally - which leaves me in the negative position of fighting against that which I deplore. We need a brdge towards change - we can reject the foundations on which the near side of the bidge stands - we need to understand and work toward the far side - what is at the other end of the bridge ? We all know what we would like to tear down but what do we want to construct?

  11. Milk stealers ride again. The foundations of health are laid in the first years of life.

    I can see the farming lobby fighting this one - tho milk prices are at an all time high as the Chinese are usg more of it as they climb from poverty.

  12. Afternoon all

    The front page of the STimes is leading with-

    'Cameron goes to war on welfare cheats.Lots about the estimated £5.2 billion per annum that is lost to benefit fraud and nothing about offsetting that against the billions of £,s per annum in unclaimed benefits-especially amongst the elderly.Plus the usual about workless households and how three generations of some families have never worked.And not a single word about the root causes of that phenomenon.Largely caused IMO by the deindustrialisation and deskilling of many working class communities across the country.And the failure of successive governments to deal with the consequences of that.

    Another interesting article about Britains growing ethnic fault lines.Something i,ve dsicussed here before and something IMO that isn,t addressed by the Left as much as it should be.

    Enjoy the rest of the day everyone.

  13. Afternoon all

    I have started reading the Spirit Level, Sheff, although I haven't finished it yet. I don't read very much these days, except when I am on holiday.

    It is a pretty good book so far, though.

    Paul re: Britain's growing ethnic fault lines - we have been hearing the same shite for 5 decades now. It takes a generation or two for immigrant peoples to integrate fully into the local society, and the Muslims are no different to anyone else in that respect.

    More shit-stirring on the part of the Times in the build-up to the planned Bradford riot by the EDL, no doubt.

  14. sheff

    Here's the <a href=http://www.equalitytrust.org.uk/whySpirit Level website</a - lots of stuff there, and it's free.

    Also recommend Danny Dorling's stuff (Prof in Geog at Sheff Uni), he also publishes a lot of his research for free.

  15. Oops, messed up me linky.

  16. I've read quite a bit about the Spirit Level - sounds like a very decent book. My reading tends to be in escapist mode, though, so I generally go for fiction.

    Jen, any chance you can make it up this way for BW's gig in November? I have a spare room.... Enjoy your visit to your sister's - it's always nice to get away for a few days.

  17. H BB


    Looked on line for ref to Johnstone - couldn't find anything so far - will try again later.

    Dogge wants a walk.

  18. And Cameron's backtracked - free milk is staying

  19. Just back from lovely walk in Lathkill Dale. One of the prettiest limestone valleys in the Peak. Follwed by huge bacon sandwiches and mugs of tea. Heaven.

    BB - I'll have a wander into town tomorrow and get a copy. About time I picked up something other than fiction and it sounds as though it might be worth it.

    BTW - Have just bought some Arabic trance which is absolutely fab. If someone can explain to me how to upload it to youtube I'd be greatful?

  20. BB

    ''Paul re: Britain's growing ethnic fault lines - we have been hearing the same shite for 5 decades now. It takes a generation or two for immigrant peoples to integrate fully into the local society, and the Muslims are no different to anyone else in that respect.''

    I think you,ve totally misrepresented what i said.Who said anything about Muslims?I certainly didn,t.I was referring to ethnic fault lines and not relgious ones.And the Sunday Times article was based on wide and growing variations in the ethnic breakdown of birth rates between different areas.So i,m not sure why you,ve concluded that the Sunday Times was shit-stirring.Or the relevance of your point to what you think may be a planned riot by the EDL(which also has Black members despite being a group of vile bigots) in Bradford.

  21. Thanks Thauma that's a really kind offer, I will do my best.


    I've just watched that Sherlock thing for the first time it's a horrible show, I've never liked Sherlock Holmes as a character though so I shouldn't be suprised I didn't like it.

    Is the Spirit Level the book that the think tank shill tried (and badly failed) to trash on Cif a few weeks ago?

  22. Leni

    Very interesting 14.36 post from you.I agree with you that we,re in a transition period and share your frustration and anxiety at what lies ahead.Plus the limits on what can be achieved NOW in a society that shows no sign of uniting to address the intolerable inequalites we have in this country.

    @sheff-if i don,t 'see' you beforehand good luck on tuesday.

  23. Milk thing seems to have been shelved...
    "Policy U-turn on milk for young children announced as minister was live on television defending measures "


  24. Just parking this in case I have to repost with less poultry-related language later...
    (from this, btw...
    "That is a ringing final verdict on same-sex love, and by extension, on the viability of women living full lives without men."

    Lesbians get by very nicely without cock? Stunned, I am.

    Because that's what this 'without men' crap is about. Cock. Not men. Every woman I know, straight, gay, bi, whatever, has important men in their lives. Their father, for example. Stepfather. Brothers. Sons. Friends, uncles, teachers, colleagues, etc etc.

    So, "do women need men?" is really as silly a question as "do people need other people?" Yes. yes, they probably do (unless you're a hermit ascetic living up a pole or something, in which case, well done, carry on). If any man is really threatened by two particular women managing to get by quite nicely without cock, then, frankly, he's an idiot. But they aren't really, are they? (chaps - are you? I'm imagining not...)

    But if anyone, man or woman, thinks that the theme of a summer movie is a microcosm of wider society and has something deep to say about the human condition, then, well...


  25. Hello Leni, I could have got the spelling wrong. I'll have a go at tracking it down myself and get back to you.

  26. Honestly Philippa where do they get these writers from?

    Your comment is great but as for the rest of it, as some people say *headdesk*

  27. Jen, would be lovely to see you up here.

    Sheff, have been searching in vain for a gorgeous Arabic piece from the Orlando soundtrack.

  28. jen - i was going with *facepalm*, it's less painful...

  29. U guys should check Anouar Brahem. At work so dont know if there's You tube available. Thimar & Madar are both great..

  30. I am actually sat on the settee Philippa so it is only a metaphorical desk. :)

  31. jen - i have actually done *headdesk* on an actual desk, and, in short, i wouldn't recommend it...

    just wondering - is 'little pea' the oddest sportsman's nickname ever?

  32. Turm

    Thanks for the heads up on Anouar Brahem - will def be getting some of his music

    Anouar Brahem and Jan Garbarak

  33. LaRit

    ''Well, you 'contend' incorrectly. They were not 'accusations' they were observations, formulated on the conclusions of your many posts directed predominantly at female members of this group, which, if I am not mistaken reveal you to have at best, a confused and bitter attitude toward women in general.''

    Trouble is LaRit you,re coming up with observations that have no basis in fact.And you,ve again failed to provide any proof.For whilst i freely admit i have had problems with you and one other female memeber of UT i simply haven,t directed many posts to predominately female members in the way you suggest.In fact most of the spats i,ve had here have been with other men.However a few women here have bought it to my attention that whilst i haven,t had spats with them directly they have nevertheless been offended by some of the language i,ve used and have perceived it to be sexist/misogynistic .And i,ve accepted their points and will endeavor to be more careful in future .

    I notice that at no point have you conceded that you have any responsibility whatsoever for the spat we,ve had.Which i feel shows a degree of immaturity on your part.So perhaps both of us could do with a bit more self-reflection.

  34. Turm

    have you heard of this Morrocan band Maghrebika

    Have just bought their album Neftakhir from itunes. Its gorgeous and has that incredibly brooding track, Al Insan that was used in Rendition.

  35. Leni: sorry, nowt to do with spelling,got the completely wrong. It's Keith not Tony Johnstone!

    If you check out the file I e-mailed you, there's a bibliography at the end with more details.

    Gerzy Grotowski and Augusto Boal would probably be of interest to you.

  36. Trampled under foot.

    is that how you're feeling Paul?

  37. Couldn't find the one you mention, Sheff, but found this one.

  38. Paul - I was just guessing what it was about. I won't pay for the Times so I just assumed it was in its normal vein.

    I still don't believe that this country is divided along ethnic lines any more than it has been in the past though. And they do tend to blur the facts when talking about the number of "foreigners" born in the UK.

  39. Paul, if you're feeling a bit trampled, maybe a trip to the seaside will sort you out.

  40. Thauma

    I found Tyran perdant - which is a pretty good example but not quite so brooding as Al Insan and much darker and bassier than you get over the net

  41. Leni Politics is about survival , it is about the distribution of resources and wealth, security for the few or the many.

    Thats it and it is why I'm a socialist. I believe that the key problem is persuading people that we CAN create a better world.

    I met a chap in a LP do the other day and discussed the lack of democracy in the party and the need for open debate at conference. He agreed with the more democracy thing but said that we can't have open debate because the press was too powerful!

    We ALLOW the press to be too powerful, we have to dare to call their bluff. Murdoch still rubbishes Labour even though we have a completely non-representative party with a spurious and rediculous attempt at a an undemocratic uniformity which speaks for no section of the working people of this country,

    We will never win that way. We win by showing our diversity by showing that the way forward is NOT everyone singing the same tune - we need the harmony of a choir. because that refects the diversity of life.

    Differences of opinion are not 'disunity' they are fundamental to democracy. In a democracy we loose some arguments and win others but the arguent can always be had later. There no longer seems to be any understanding of this.

    Bur we do need a greater consciousness of the way those who truly rule us manipulate us into thinking that a) we have no power and b) they have our best interests at heart.

    An example of the latter is that, apparently that 'nice' Mr Cameron has come out against cutting milk for under fives.

    So be relieved and thankful for that and ignore the rest? I don't think so!!!!!

  42. Like it, Sheff ... reminds me ... have you ever seen Ken Russell's Salome?

  43. Sheff

    No i,m not feeling trampled underfoot i,m actually

    Risin' To The Top .

    I was trrying to be sociable with the Led Zep number.I can see there,s a headbanging theme in de house tonite and sadly that,s the only one i know.

  44. @Turm

    Thanks for the reminder - I just dug out Madar, but thought I had others too. Now I find I haven't, I shall acquire some. It's great stuff.

  45. Damn. Also just found out from here that I missed Brahem in Brighton a couple of months back. Although Philippa has him turning up in Montpellier in November...

  46. thauma

    I found this site which appears to have the whole album - hope it works.


    OK, wasn't sure...thought i'd ask.

    Am totally locked into a Morrocan/Algerian, trip hop, trance, dub thing this evening...and this Bill Laswell character with his wicked bass is amazing.

  47. Thanks Sheff ... will check it out later - Top Gear is on in a moment, and I wouldn't want to miss my hero Jeremy Clarkson! ;-)

  48. and I wouldn't want to miss my hero Jeremy Clarkson! ;-)

    now that is sad as fuck Thauma!! - but I know what you mean....

  49. Anne

    My anger againstNuLab is that they failed o build on what was left of te welfare state - they continued to dismantle and to destroy.

    We socialists were left trying to resist the very people we should have been supporting and who should have been supporting us. They have put us back to a position where we are fighting a rearguard action to protect the little left to us.

    We are left - yet again , opposing and trying to undermine the gvt. in power rather than finding ways to reform the system and the society that sysem has created. We have to fight each proposed measure, each retrograde step to maintain a foothold.

    The plurality of ideas is needed - but the choir , as you say, must sing together on the night of the performance.

    It is nonsense to say we cannot have open debate - that's simply throwing in the towel. The debate is needed now - while we have a toehold - those politicians who stand in the way must be challenged. The power is not theirs to hang on to - they hold it on behalf of the people and need reminding of this.

    It will be too late for millions once these measure start to kick in - another generation will be lost to poverty.

    I just wish more could see this.

    As to 'nice'Mr. C there is no danger of his children going without anything. He doesn't give a Flying F*** about the majority in this country.

  50. Hehe - Mr Clarkson just had rather a good line: something like, 'This car sounds nearly as good as Peter Mandelson being attacked by a bear'.

  51. Leni The plurality of ideas is needed - but the choir , as you say, must sing together on the night of the performance

    Precisely but It will be too late for millions once these measure start to kick in - another generation will be lost to poverty This is true but we must not forget that there are more of us.

    We must get angry in a controlled directed way we cannot must not believe that all is lost - I truly believe that the future of this planet depends on us NOT doing so.

    The reasons we ended up with New Labour are, imho, twofold firstly the diversion of identity politics, secondly we were persuded that it was not possible to make socialism 'electable'. We bought into Murdoch's 'longest suicide note in history' nonsense and have feared the media ever since. Time to take the bastards on.

    Ironically I truly believe that many people thought that socialism was what they were going to get and actually longed for in 1997.

    We are in a sense back to the situation we were in 100 years ago with the old Labour Representation Committee. Its no accident that John McDonald's group is called that and has the old LP badge as its own.

    WE need a society that is run for and by 'The workers by Hand and by Brain' as that badge symolises. But it won't be given to us on a plate.

    The alternative is the end of 1984 - a boot stamping on a human face for ever.

    We simply have no choice.

  52. We simply have no choice.

    True Anne - but what the fuck to we actually do? I can't rejoin the LP - after all that they have done I simply can't bring myself to do it. The other 'socialist' parties are pissing in the wind. All I'm left with is the futility of kicking against the pricks.....

  53. Exactly, Sheff. I could not join a party whose senior members voted for the Iraq war and who are neo-libs. If the party dumps the bastards I would consider it.

  54. Thanks for the Ella, Paul. Can never get enough of her...

    Sublime sunset from my balcony tonight.

  55. "We simply have no choice.

    True Anne - but what the fuck to we actually do? I can't rejoin the LP - after all that they have done I simply can't bring myself to do it. The other 'socialist' parties are pissing in the wind. All I'm left with is the futility of kicking against the pricks..... "

    * nods and sighs *

  56. thanks for the tip PeterJ will check him out...

    (not many people swing by MTP, need to take every chance offered)

  57. Thauma: I loved the gag in last weeks Top Gear, where Clarkson was musing on the anagrams to be found in number plates as the camera cut to the one on the car he was driving: CTU 131N!

  58. Chekhov - fell asleep during that part but was informed later on!

  59. peh. have just had something of an upsetting conversation with DB.


    grrrr. am hopeless.

    liked the ella - anyone got anything upbeat, out there?

  60. FWIW i think the Labour Party is going to be a lost cause for the foreseeable future.And the current bunch of tossers in line for the leadership ain,t gonna make a jot of difference.

    The great reforming Labour govt of 1945-1951 was voted in on a landslide victory by a people who had suffered the trauma of both the 30,s depression and WW2.Yet still lost to a patrician style Tory Party which subsequently remained in power for 13 years.

    My view is that for the foreseeable future the best we can hope for is a piecemeal response to the government-issue by issue.But perversely if things get as bad as i fear they might the shared trauma may just draw the fractured working classes together.And hopefully some men and women will emerge as leaders to drive the labour movement forward again.But this will be a Labour movement that has the confidence of the people.

  61. MsC/Deano/Princess

    A great new resource Yorkshire film archive online now.

    YFA online is the Yorkshire Film Archive's interactive moving image website where you can watch hundreds of films reflecting Yorkshire life, landscape and culture from the 1890s to the present day

  62. philippa

    Donald Byrd ?

    Have no idea what music you like but this is upbeat.

  63. Hi Philippa,

    This always makes me feel better. Not exactly upbeat, but soothing.

    What does DB stand for? Initials of name?

  64. Right Sherlock time coming up. Laters.

  65. aw, bless you all - specially BB, hehehehehe.

    (love that comment "my favourite part is when they talk about fucking the shit" heheheheheh)

    am just wishing that some kind soul would put hooligan's progress up on youtube, as that's my happy song, but i've no idea how to do it and am clearly too aggravated / drunk to work the record player.

    (DB = dearly beloved, thauma. nothing if not a slave to my context....)

    paul - am deffo going to be sending that link to my funk-loving friend gareth, i think he needs to branch out beyond toots and the maytals and tower of power....

  66. "Hanged, yes." Ooh, I love a pedant sometimes.

  67. possibly a silly thing to be listening to right now but it was in the side bar of thauma's offering - melodrama-a-go-go

  68. Dearly Beloved - good god! (As it were.) :-)

    We are gathered here today....

  69. thaumaturge

    What about 'Bless me father for i have sinned....

  70. oh dear. the 80s weepies just keep coming.

  71. Dunno about that, Paul, have reached the end of my liturgy! Isn't that a Catholic thing?

  72. Be careful Philippa when it comes to arguing with dearly beloveds (as far as I can remember ;) ) drinking and listening to sad music is not generally a good thing.

  73. well, i don't know about sinning, but clearly I've done something wrong....


    anyway - I love playing youtube roulette with the right hand menu recomends. from black to black hole sun...

  74. This comment has been removed by the author.

  75. thaumaturge

    'fraid so along with a million and one thou shalt nots.....

  76. possibly going too far round about now...

  77. "we crucify the insincere, tonight..."

    new motto?


  78. Dunno, Jen, I think it's rather cathartic.

    Phil - black is black.

  79. may have to drag myself towards the record player as have just remembered how much i loved this when i was younger....jennifer's body

    (upside - given the less than virtuoso guitar stylings of ms love, can actually play most of this album...)

  80. ah.

    jen - don't be concerned, please.


    didn't really notice that before....

  81. Haven't heard that one before Philippa I was never a Courtney fan. ;)

  82. one thing am just noticing - how come all the 'official' vids have such bad buffering? that's three now that couldn't get more than 6 seconds out at a time....

    am sticking to the pirates. speaking of which, this woman thinks she's a reincarnated viking.

    mind, if you spent a couple of year's as Hole's bassist, you'd probably think so too....

  83. Something i,ve dug up for all you headbangers

  84. paul - I swear, I was just searching the Purple archive for the right song! nice going....

  85. ah, was in a slightly different blackmore period there...

    Bonnet looks a bit Eldrichy in the clip, that could be why i like it...

  86. can't remember what song bonnet did with MSG that i like, so here's a lovesong instead...

  87. The present leadership of the LP is not likely to last. People are re-joinng the LP, the ones I've met so far are not joining to support New Labour! It is the project that is dead in the water. Their pathetic insistance that they have discovered socialist principles again doesn't wash do they really think we are that stupid?

    Lets be clear, this can't be turned around overnight, I don't expect to see it myself (68 in 10 days! can't believe it, don't feel it!).

    The first task is to fight for greater democracy in the part so that people can once again see that the members are once again in charge of the party ordinary people will start to take notice.

    Yes there will be some opposition on the basis of this govt's disastrous policies, but single issue politics never really works axcept possibly to educate people politically.

    I expect the unions to be the first to change actually, people are already joining unions in expectation of fights to come. Union leaderships can change very quickly and in unions that are affiliated to the LP this can have an effect on the party.

    The most important task is convincing people that the powers that be are NOT invincible. Their power comes from our belief in it, in the end the capitalists can do nothing without us, whereas we can do it all without them. WE don't need them they need us.

    Thats the bottom line, I think thats the real meaning behind that line in the Internationale.

    Away with all your superstitions

    Belief in the power of the ruling class is the greatest superstition of all.

    Just given up on Sherlock beginning to irritate me! Going to bed! more packing tomorrow!


  88. Am way out of my depth with this style of music so dunno whether you will appreciate a bit of

  89. ooh, like that 'ides of march' one!

    (sucker for a good brass section, me)

  90. Anne

    So you will be in your new house in time for your birthday?

    I only watched half of an episode of Sherlock before the irritation became to great.

  91. yes - "more packing"? - how are we doing, anne?

    bit less shouty

  92. chekhov

    I have not rcd. your email.

  93. right. to bed.

    night all!

    (and ta)

  94. Leni: I was referring to one I sent a few months ago with a file attached on acting styles.
    Sorry I didn't make that clear.

  95. I guess everyone's gone and I'm just collecting the empty glasses again, but I'll sling a coin in the jukebox, while I do.

    "Dearly beloved
    We are gathered here today
    2 get through this thing called life

    Electric word life
    It means forever and that's a mighty long time
    But I'm here 2 tell u
    There's something else"

  96. annetan42
    "Yes there will be some opposition on the basis of this govt's disastrous policies, but single issue politics never really works axcept possibly to educate people politically."

    Beg to differ with you, there. The abolition of slavery, the expansion of enfranchisement, which resulted in the 1832 Reform Act, the repeal of the Corn Laws, the enfranchisement of women, the abolition of the Poll Tax - all single issue campaigns that succeeded.

    It's time to mount a campaign - no public sector cuts. If only Tony Benn was thirty years younger, we would have a figurehead.

  97. This comment has been removed by the author.

  98. Habib

    Agree with you that single issue politics can be highly suucceeful.And whilst many people-especially the young-are disengaged from mainstream politics it,s a different story when it comes to single issues politics.

    Also i feel people who think the Tony Benn Campaign will achieve anything are living in cloud cuckoo land.A bit like those people in France in 1940 who thought the octogenarian Petain would be their savior.Ain,t gonna happen.

    I may be wrong but i feel that what may kickstart a new effective grass roots movement is a coalition evolving from those currently involved in single issue politics.And forced 'into bed together' when the shit really hits the fan in this country.

  99. Bugger!

    suucceeful???? successful!

  100. Paul, you should have a read about Boulanger, in France a hundred years earlier - very funny and tragic.

    The thing about single issue campaigns, they work because they ignore divisions between the people involved in the campaign, the divisions that have been created and fostered by those who would hate to see us all fight for the same thing.

  101. I signed up for the resistance coaliion - said I was in S Wales - asked if we had email group for first local contact - no replies.

    If they are waiting until first conference in November they could leave it too late.

  102. Hi Leni! and a belated hi Paul! (where are my manners these days?)

  103. Paul

    I/m never sure about replying to you - often by the time Ido your post has gone.

    Ar you feeling better ?


    The tragedy is that people were willing to be divided.

  104. Hi Habib and Leni

    It,s just a quick visit.Hope you,re both well.I,ve been signed off for another week and to be honest i,m bored senseless.Not well enough to go out but not sick enough to be in bed.Ain,t anything too serious.Just a dose of sinusitus that turned into a full blown chest infection.Irony is that whilst i,m probably driving all you guys mad with my posts you,re actually helping me to stay sane.Anyway by this time next week i should be up and running again so won,t be posting so much.

    I,ll love you and leave you both

    Nite x

  105. Maybe, Leni, I tend to suspect that people were and are shown what divides them.

    Not a conspiracy theorist, but it's hard to see a plain and simple news story brought to the front page of many newspapers, without a byline screaming blue murder against one group, or another.

  106. @Montana

    Socialism is not about "compassion", nor can it be reduced to a pithy one-liner by drag queens.

    It's about social justice, and it has only ever been achieved when people have organised, got angry and demanded change. Social justice never got conceded on a whim just because Warren Buffett and his kind had a pang of conscience/compassion.

    FWIW, I apologise for calling habib a Paki. It was unforgivable. It's a word I've never used until then.

    But it's fucking typical of the misguided idiots on here that they took such offence at it, because they've bought into the bourgeois lie that the worst thing in the world you can do is to use a racist word.

    It's fucking typical of the idiocy that has made the Guardian the paper it is today, has made the Labour Party what it has become since the takeover of the party by Jack Straw and the rest of the 1968 Left, and has made this country, and indeed the whole world, one in which the only meaningful discrimination is between rich and poor.

    I've not seen a single post on here this past week which has actually addressed this issue, other than one by annetan.

    The rest of you live up to your role as useful idiots, wringing your hands about the poor oppressed minorities, as though those minorities were wholly composed of uniformly oppressed individuals, all of them deserving of your pity and your bourgeois concern, none of them venal, greedy, complicit or to be called to account.

    The groupthink on here the last week or so has been nauseating to behold.

  107. Habib

    Perhaps I am naive but I really believe that if all people were accorded respect then the different groups- be they ethnic, religious or whatever - would not feel the need to vie with each other for attention or supremacy.

    I agree that 'differnce' is forever being alluded to. In a recent edition of local paper iread 3 stories which began
    A Swansea man ...
    Local Woman...
    Young Muslim ...

    All three had appered in court - the 'man' and the 'woman' for quite serious offences - the 'Muslim' for a minor motoring offence.

    I assume man and woman were good God fearing Christians and had white skin to boot. This is subtle but lke a slow drip, drip it can be more damagng than a more blatant approach.

    Similarly I have never seen headline saying "Hetero man ..." but have seen "Gay man ..."

  108. Hello Hank

    sorry we are all so nauseating.

    How are you ?

  109. @Hank:

    "I've not seen a single post on here this past week which has actually addressed this issue, other than one by annetan."

    Quite right Hank but I'm buggered if any of us know what to do.

    We all know what is wrong and we all know we have been stitched up by this sham of a democracy and your analysis is pretty much spot on but what are we supposed to do when we are being held to ransom by a bunch of plutocrats?

    Annetan wants a debate and quite rightly so...the plutocrats don't want one ...ergo there won't be one!

    What's the alternative?..Start manufacturing Molatov cocktails?

  110. Hi Leni

    Feeling a bit queasy after reading your 1.10 post tbh.

    It's no wonder the working class lost interest in the victim mentality of "the Left", is it?

    At what point did the Left decide that the class war was over and that its efforts were better spent fighting the straw men on the other side?

    And at what point did it occur to the Left that all they were doing was creating a small cadre of middle class minorities who'd lost touch with all working class people, regardless of race, religion, sex or sexuality?

    When's it gonna occur to you, leni?

    Or the rest of you?

  111. @chekhov - "Quite right Hank but I'm buggered if any of us know what to do."


  112. @ hank: so do you know what we should be doing?
    You have identified all the problems, do you have the solutions?

    At least you know where you stand with the Mafia but politicians have the edge when it comes to a real "protection racket"!

  113. "Socialism is not about "compassion", nor can it be reduced to a pithy one-liner by drag queens."

    Ha ha ha ha ha

  114. @Hank:
    "And at what point did it occur to the Left that all they were doing was creating a small cadre of middle class minorities who'd lost touch with all working class people, regardless of race, religion, sex or sexuality?"

    I can't speak for Leni but from what I can gather from my converstions with her, she has been well aware of what concerns you for maybe a long time before you got concerned about the same issues.

  115. Hank

    It occured to me a long time ago.

    You are confusing what people (me at least ) are saying.

    The great division is between those with money and power and those with neither.This is obvious. It doesn't need saying. When I speak of discrmantion against minority groups dividing us and causing the dominance of identity poltics I recognise that in each of these groups there are rich and poor - the dominating and the dominated.

    I object to characterising people - anyone - by race , religion or gender. The reason for this is - as you might be aware - that the rich can and do rise above these divisions and make common cause each with the other. It suits *all* of them to encourage division and to divide the wc.

    The wc bear the brunt of these divisions - it is they who compete for jobs and affordable housing. For as long as one group can complain that another group is taking jbs and houses they are not gettng together to demand jobs and housing for all.

    They are kept busy blaming the poor who happen to be immigrants or folow another religion - this distracts them from the real cause of their distress. They are pointed towards the criminal in another group rather then looking for those in their own - it's classic.

    They are encouraged to attack each other and stay divided. While they are busy fighting over the carcass of what is left after the rich man has had his fill the rich man gets on with taking more. Of course there are criminals and rotten employers in all groups. There are bankers, city traders and sweat shop owners across the globe.

    I assume you talk to lots of people. I assume youhave heard some say "if it wasn'tfor immigrants - or whoever - there would be enough jobs , housing etc" They have been taught to say this - to scapegoat - to stop them looking for the real cause.

    No, as I have said a dozen times, I don't know what to do either. Irepeat what I said earlier today - we are back fighting the gvt. of the day rather than addressing the core problem which is the distribuion of resources and wealth and building a more equal society. We need to challenge MPs and remind they hold power on our behalf - it is not theirs by right.

    In short - the country is a mess - we can fight among ourselves, keep our heads down or at least have a go at doing something.

  116. Leni: what are we supposed to do? Resort to armed insurgency?
    Isn't the "neo-liberal" stitch up" part of a plan to make "insurgency" redundant?

  117. Hank

    i/m of to bed now but I want to ask you something.

    I accept that you like to take a swing at people every so often - we can all look after ourselves and either ignore or swing back.

    What I don't understand is why you keep on telling us what we already know. We know the difference between rich and poor, we recognise the imbalance of power . We understand the concept of class. A medieval peasant knew these things - he like us lived with them and bore the yoke.

    In short why are you so patronising ?

  118. @Leni:
    Yeah, I was wondering about that too!
    Hank is quite right in his analysis but that's only half of the equation.........what's the answer Hank?

  119. chekhov

    What to do ? There will be no armed uprising - that's pretty certain at least.

    Are the unions gearing up for strikes ?Are there demonstrations planned ?

    We can't even withold our tax - taken at source.

    I would suggest something like millions of us taking to the streets one day a wek - just clogging up the commercial centres of every town - barricade the City - hem them in. Bring it all to a stand still.

    Those on the periphery of the crowds would get their heads broken.We could not guarantee that all would be peaceful - always the rabble rousers fire up the few to destroy property etc bringing retaliation down on the crowd - for which noone is ever held accountable.

    We could threaten to stop using the banks - return to a cash economy - but too many people in hock to the banks and I think most benefits and pensions are paid through BACS.

    There are moves afoot to organise oppositon - we will see what is proposed. Too few joining and demonstrating will be ineffectual - will just be ignored and over ridden.

    I suspectthere will be no real action until early summer next ear. Maybe some strikes over the winter. Too much apathy. When people start to experience the effects of the proposed cuts, when jobs go and benefits are reduced and people can't get hospital treatment they may be moved to act. I doubt if many really understand what is about to happen.

    I am interested in where exactly we are going - just opposing or tearing down is no solution. There has to be a planned alternative - a goal. Angry people don't build bridges, they simply lash out and destroy. Who and where are the alternative leaders and what is their vision ?

  120. "What I don't understand is why you keep telling us what we already know...

    ...In short, why are you so patronising?"

    Hi Leni - a response to your post from 3 or 4 days ago.

    Frankly, I think that the things I say on here bear repeating, and often, because it's not at all clear that the message has got across.

    If you think that I'm being patronising, maybe that's because I don't dig your hippy shit, as exemplified by the 1.10 post of yours that I found so laughable.

    Meanwhile, Montana has been posting nonsense recently about how hormonalgangrene has more to say about socialism in one line than those who used to be montana's pets.

    Hormonal has been a vocal fan of the neo-liberal cutters.

    Hormonal might be queen of the tart one-liners, but she sure as hell isn't a socialist. Even by the standards of bitchy gossip hounds stranded in the mid-West.