Category Archives: Evil BBC

I think that few of us spotted this one coming. EU reintroduces death penalty via LISBON “in the case of war, riots, upheaval”


David Davis

http://www.archbishop-cranmer.blogspot.co.uk/2008/04/lisbon-treaty-introduces-eu-wide-death.html

I think it might be time to flag this one to The Faithful. Some of us may not have noticed it – I certainly didn’t. Do you read Eurotreaties? I do not, for I have not time.

And since it was in a footnote to a footnote to something that few if any normal people would be willing or able to spend the time reading through comprehensively, we all might be forgiven.

The entire notion now throws, into ever-sharper focus, this Nation’s relationship with the EU. I have nothing to add to that sentence for you may all have your own thoughts.

As we all know, I am not in favour of modern States being able to take life: this is because in all cases the right to do that to another human has been denied by the state’s law.

If I have not a right to end someone’s life who has wronged me and mine, and if my arms and guns and kitchen-knives and screwdrivers have been seized off me in that regard,  then I also have not the right to delegate that right to Continue reading

Thinking about witch-burning


David Davis

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10571089/DJ-Dave-Lee-Travis-an-opportunist-who-assaulted-vulnerable-young-women-court-hears.html

It does not usually fall to me, to comment on such matters: this is because of today’s PuritaNazi “guilt by association” meme, as in what used to happen to people that even just _/looked at/_ Witches that were on their way to being burned.

I’m not sure that I ought even to be opening my mouth here, as any sort of comment can be so dangerous, and taken the wrong way can lead to death.

I’m hoping that I shan’t get dragged by the happily-screaming-mob into the fire-tumbril merely by referring obliquely to the bound-and-gagged man, as he is drawn past me on a ground-hurdle, spat on, and pelted with dogshit.

Being alive and a young man in the 1950s, 60 and 70s meant this thing, amoong others. You _knew_ (we all knew, we weren’t stupid you know) that to simply _be_ a disk-jockey, and (specially) _on the radio and the telly!_ was to be able to _get_ all the girls that you could possibly handle. They literally _threw themselves_ at these people. Being Men Of The World, we’d advise our teenage female counterparts “not to go with that fella” (I’m not implying here that it would have been Continue reading

Minimum Alcohol Pricing Flops


by Dick Puddlecote
http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/DickPuddlecote/~3/c_hpsDdXrc0/minimum-alcohol-pricing-flops.html

Minimum Alcohol Pricing Flops I think I’m starting to feel a bit sorry for the automatons blindly advocating in favour of minimum alcohol pricing. Because you see, as campaigns go, it has been a bit of a comic failure.

Quite apart from the fact that it is illegal under EU precedent, the whole idea has been hampered from the start as if deliberately so by a higher being.

The Sheffield University report was, in itself, already policy-led rubbish, but when a BBC Panorama episode has to be pulled from iPlayer last year, the incompetence of the temperance lobby’s lead researchers was laid brutally open to ridicule. Continue reading

Turn off the Programming


by Euro Vigilante
http://theeurovigilante.com/2013/05/15/turn-off-the-programming/

A correspondent recently wrote that he was tired of watching mainstream media news programming.

Here was my reply:

My solution, a couple of years ago, was just to stop watching the news. It’s all just government propaganda, anyway, delivered by journalists terrified of losing their lobby correspondent passes, BBC sinecures, and other ‘government beat’ reporting privileges.

Most of their stories – except perhaps sex and sport, which provide us proles with relieving circuses – are just government press releases anyway. The government-licensed media franchises suck them in like manna from heaven and treat them as holy gospel (e.g. The plight of the ‘rebels’ in Syria, as written by a Foreign Office policy wonk).

All genuine news comes from the Internet now anyway (e.g. the horror of the Al Qaeda/MI6/CIA Western-government-supplied ‘rebels’ in Syria releasing Sarin gas on civilians and being appalling cannibals). That’s why the self-appointed ‘authorities’ (who failed to receive their ‘authority’ either from me, you, or God) want to wrap the Internet in chains. Continue reading

Everyone said “You can’t unseat the Political EnemyClass by voting them out. Well, I say: “it has never been tried before, and we shall have to see.”


David Davis

Clown or fruitcake?

(from Matt at the DT)

Today, for the first time a rather historically large number of British voters get to be able to elect, if they like, candidates for “Council Seats” (this to say in honest countries – “socialist Soviets”) from the United Kingdom Independence Party. Now, the Libertarian Alliance goes out of its way to be perennially nasty to all the parties extant in the UK, from time to time, and sometimes all at once. But it’s natural that a little more of our ire and frustration is reserved for those which are more truly socialist than others: for I at least can’t figure out how it might be possible to be what some people call themselves, which is “libertarian socialists” (yes I have heard that one) or even “left libertarians”, although that might just be possible.

This round of elections for regional soviets councils is notable for the frantic and public attempts by other parties, particularly the Tories, to make direct and sometimes ad-hominem attacks on the reputations and backgrounds of rather a lot of UKIP candidates. I’ve been watching British elections since 1959, more or less, and haven’t noticed any such thing on this scale ever before. If they occurred, such assaults tended to come from the socialist left.

The entire British political-class, ably egged on by the BBC, appears to have taken fright at the idea that, for once, letting people vote for who they’d like might actually change things, and not to that class’s liking. As I type, there are no results yet from vote-counting, but the morning may be interesting.

I want to continue by offering a libertarian-based policy position document for a party such as UKIP, were it to, let us say, win a majority in a regional soviet, or even a general election. But as rheumatoid arthritis is making my elbows increasingly non-functional tonight, typing is a little strenuous and exciting. So I’ll save that for a post in the next couple of days or so when the painkillers have kicked in.  Meanwhile, commenters might like to add their own suggestions.

 

(Incidentally, the headline owes a little credit to Air Marshall Arthur “Bomber” Harris”, who used a similar expression when someone suggested that “you can’t win a war by bombing the enemy alone”.)

The good is oft-interr-ed with their bones


David Davis

Since Margaret Thatcher is to be in-terr-ed tomorrow, I just thought we’d throw one last punch at her enemies and ours. I found this wonderful piece on The Last Ditch the other day, and one para deserves to be highlighted in our usual way:-

“If you want to know who freedom’s enemies are, mention her with approval. Mad eyes will light up all around you and foul sentiments will fill the air. Note their names and never leave them alone with anything you value; material, spiritual or ethical.”

Yes of course, I _know_ that we object to her having

(a) made the British State more efficient – as a recipe for disaster one would recommend this since the British-Political-Enemyclass is efficient already at making a powerful tyrannical state, and

(b) because she failed to absolutely destroy socialism at home and in the world, before members of that same EnemyClass destroyed her.

But I think that Tom Paine’s paragraph sums up who we are up against, whatever we as classical liberals think of Thatcher herself. I think we can lay her to rest now. May The Iron Lady Rust In Peace.

The Baron’s ‘B’ and the Beeb.


by Anna Raccoon
http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/AnnaRaccoon/~3/szcsS1eI3e8/

Note: The BBC should be shut down. Its people should be sacked without severance pay, and their pensions should be cancelled. The archives should be destroyed and its copyrights disclaimed. To have worked for it should become as great a badge of shame as having been an East German border guard. SIG Continue reading

Seven Myths About the Iraq War: How BBC Newsnight failed journalism on the 10 year anniversary of the invasion


by Nafeez Ahmed
http://nafeez.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/seven-myths-about-iraq-war-how-bbc.html

As a participant in BBC Newsnight special, “Iraq – 10 Years On”, I found myself feeling slightly miffed at the lack of real debate on the crucial issues.

On the one hand, Newsnight presented a number of narratives of the war and its aftermath as ‘fact’, which are deeply questionable. On the other, there were no serious, factually-grounded criticisms of the war, despite a diverse panel which included people who did not support it.

As author of a major book on the war and its historical context, Behind the War on Terror: Western Secret Strategy and the Struggle for Iraq, as well as co-author of a new report, Executive Decisions: How British Intelligence was Hijacked for the Iraq War, I consider myself to be reasonably informed. Yet BBC Newsnight failed almost entirely to bring any of these issues to light.

What follows is my Newsnight-inspired Iraq War Myth-Busting exercise, based on what was, and wasn’t, discussed on the show. Continue reading

Should David Cameron Apologise for Amritsar? by Sean Gabb


Should David Cameron Apologise for Amritsar?
By Sean Gabb

http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2013-02-20-apology-sig.mp3

On Wednesday the 20th February 2013, I was asked by the BBC to comment on David Cameron’s “apology” to the Indians for the events at Amritsar in April 1919. A few hours later, I found myself on air with Keith Vaz MP, who was a Minister in the Blair Government. Without transcribing my words from the recording, here is what I said:

“I do not expect the Prime Minister to apologise for what happened at Amritsar. No more do I expect the Indians to apologise for the Black Hole of Calcutta, or for the bestial atrocities committed by the sepoys against British woman and children during the Mutiny.

“However, while there are doubtless Indians who get a thrill from watching the grandchildren of the white sahib grovel in the dust, this apology or semi-apology is really about British politics. Whether Conservative or Liberal or Labour, we are ruled by a cartel of cultural Marxists. Part of what they are about involves rewriting British history as a catalogue of shame. That alone explains why our leaders keep going about the world, apologising to every group of foreigners who may think they have a grudge against us. I am proud of my country and of its history. I want no part of this.”

To put it mildly, this is not an opinion heard very often on the BBC. But I was then asked about the principle of historic apologies. Instead of discussing the principle more than in passing, I took the opportunity to say this: Continue reading

I think we need to say things about these fellows


David Davis

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A Mote in Brussels’ Eye


JUST PUBLISHED

A Mote in Brussels’ Eye
By Ashley Mote

The diary of a Member of the European Parliament

A full, frank and controversial account of five years fighting the EU from within the castle walls. Continue reading

Nigel Lawson Puts the Boot into the Greenslime Beeb


LETTER TO LORD HALL FROM GWPF TRUSTEES (The Global Warming Policy Foundation)

The Global Warming Policy Foundation – 14 December 2012

Dear Lord Hall,

As Trustees of the all-Party and non-Party Global Warming Policy Foundation, we would like to wish you every success in your new and important post of Director General of the BBC. It is clear that you have a number of urgent matters to attend to in your post. But when you have done that, we hope you will find time to turn your attention to a matter which, although not urgent, is of considerable importance: the BBC’s treatment of global warming and climate change issues. Continue reading

State-Regulation of the British Press: So What?


State-Regulation of the British Press: So What?
By Sean Gabb
Published in The Libertarian Enterprise
25th November 2012

At the moment in England, our masters and their clients are discussing censorship of the newspaper press. After months of submissions, a government inquiry into newspaper conduct has finished, and its report will almost certainly call for what is called “a rule-based framework of regulation.” The surface argument is between those who want controls backed by the law, and those who want “voluntary self-regulation.” No one who matters, though, disputes that something must be done. Continue reading

Letter to Roger Harrabin of the BBC


Dear Roger Harrabin,

Re-reading your memo below reminds me that there is now a considerable debate as to whether the BBC have been even handed, or not, regarding the all important issue of Climate Change, or more accurately the extent that CO2 emissions have on any such change.

In the interests of the impartiality that the BBC desperately wish to show, so as to be conforming with the Royal Charter that guarantees your independence, would you please give publicity to the following:- Continue reading

It’s the Demographics, Stupid.


by Anna Raccoon
http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/AnnaRaccoon/~3/_ehg31luzVo/
It’s the Demographics, Stupid.

It has been an interesting week for the Establishment. And a bad one for the Republicans.

The Republicans lost an election because there are too many Hispanic, black and female voters and too few white, working and lower middle class men. The so called Rainbow coalition will continue to grow. That is the nature of “the American Demographic” and it is irreversible. This is the nature of history. Continue reading

BBC news – Jimmy Savile, George Entwistle and the balance of probabilities


by Robert Henderson

http://livinginamadhouse.wordpress.com/2012/10/23/jimmy-savile-george-entwistle-and-the-balance-of-probabilities/

Jimmy Savile, George Entwistle and the balance of probabilities

Robert Henderson

George Entwistle gave as an abject a performance by a media experienced bigwig before the Culture, Media and Sport select committee(( http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2221520/Jimmy-Savile-Panorama-documentary-reveals-BBC-suspected-DJ-sexual-abuse-40-years-ago.html ) as you will ever see. He adopted the BBC equivalent of giving nothing but his name, rank and number. (How on Earth did this timid personality with all the authority of a jellyfish become Director-General?) Continue reading

BBC = ‘Bad Boys Club’ – a lamentation


by the Reverend Dr Alan C. Clifford
HOW ARE THE MIGHTY FALLEN!

The BBC is now exposed as a decadent institution. As both a victim and promoter of anarchic, sex-perverted secularism, it is the official media face of a corrupt culture. Continue reading

In Defence of English Civilisation, by Sean Gabb


http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2012-10-20-qrtb-sig.mp3
Flash Animation

On the 20th October 2012, the Traditional Britain Group- a traditional conservative organisation – in conjunction with The Quarterly Review- an historic Tory journal – hosted an all day conference at the East India Club in central London titled, “Another Country – is there a future for Tradition?”

The format involved a number of 30 to 40 minute talks, followed by questions and discussion. Speakers Included: Derek Turner, Lord Sudely, Richard Spencer, Andrew Fear, Pete Myers, Stephen Bush, Peter King, and Theodore Dalrymple.

Sean Gabb, Director of the Libertarian Alliance, spoke last. The title of his speech was “In Defence of English Civilisation.” Here is a summary of his speech. The speech was not written in advance, and was given without notes, and this summary is, in some respects, an amplification on and a clarification of what was said. It also incorporates into the main speech points that were raised in the questions and answers session. This text, however, can be checked against the recording, and can be seen to give a fair account of what was said.

The recording was made with a Samsung Galaxy S2 mobile telephone, and the quality is acceptable, though not outstanding.

Continue reading

What is “Wireless tele-Vision” for? Discuss.


David Davis

[late edit...] [ I have suddenly wondered to myself what it's for, given that the global % penetration of small handheld (or not much larger) devices that can access news, comment, blogs and the opinions of millions, is approaching a majority. ]

One the one hand, the British Political EnemyClass has created what it seems to be admitting is a monster - this says “ban television for the under-threes” (or words to that effect.) Yet on the other hand a modern repressive police state would be a more difficult one in which to manage thought-control, regulate the opinions of, and generally farm for eliciting the “correct public responses” without this machinery. I have drafted a few of my own thoughts, rather fast this morning, in response to a typical Daily Mail mob-hysteria-inducing breakfast-article.

Of course, an invented device can’t be uninvented. The Wireless Tele-vision [WT] (and quickly also with post-receive injected sound subcarrier) was a marvellous development of the pure Sound-wireless, but like all technologies it’s been stolen and corrupted, Morgoth-style, by governments for their own purposes.

In the British State’s case,  WT’s purpose was to anaesthatize and render uncurious “The Masses”, over decades so nobody would notice except Continue reading

Well, at least there wasn’t a six-foot dancing penis


Well,  at least there wasn’t a six-foot dancing penis
Robert Henderson

Prior to the  opening ceremony of the  London Olympics,  the last time Britain put on a taxpayer-funded  entertainment that was  meant  to project the country to the world was on 31 January 1999.  The event was broadcast   from the  Dome (now the O2 Arena)  to mark the new millennium.  True to the politically correct  dicta of the time, the Millennium show  said precisely nothing about British history or culture and was an exceptionally  trite mishmash of  the “we are all one happy global family” variety of painfully right on exhortation and posturing  (see http://wwp.millennium-dome.com/news/news-dome-990916show.htm).  The lowlight of the show was a six-foot dancing penis. Tawdry is the word which comes to mind. Continue reading

How states set bad examples of behaviour


David Davis

I don’t follow foot ball, and I have had to be told who John Terry is. But this keeps on cropping up on my screen.

It is not for a State to decide what people can or cannot say, or think. Even I, who’d like to muzzle GramscoFabiaNazis – because they are _objectively_ wrong, not just misguided – cannot justify doing it, even under the auspices of the War Secretariat.

People ought to be free to think or say, things that might be offensive to others. There are Natural Rights: but there is no right to not be offended if someone says or thinks something that offends you – or worse – “may offend” third parties not even present at the time. This is utterly ridiculous.

Oh, and YOU MUST NEVER use the phrase “political correctness gone mad”. Doing that legitimises “political correctness” as a credible way of dictating the terms of public discourse in a liberal civilisation. You must not do it. Ever. (I know that no readers of the Libertarian Alliance would ever do such a thing, but you must tell others. We’re wasting our breath and time otherwise.)

The poor bugger will probably go down for £2,500, and then we will be forced to watch the Continue reading

Any Questions: A View from the Studio


by Bill & Ann Woodhouse

Now we know it is set up! We had Any Questions in Sturminster Newton last night and it was interesting the ‘nuts and bolts’ of how they handle it. We had to book in well in advance and were given a postcard sized ticket, perforated in the middle, half of which had space for name and address and question to be asked. Continue reading

I wonder if they did it on purpose


David Davis

[Subsequent edit by author] Further to receiving one-star ( = very poor) I should just rectify my omission, which was clearly observed by the respondent. I forgot to mention the requirement, that will encumber any incoming Libertarian or Revolutionary-Liberalist administration, whether in England, or the UK, or elsewhere, to criminalize and proscribe the existence of any bodies calling themselves “Trade Unions”, which behave in ways shown by the 19th- , 20th-  and 21st-Century British models of same. These outfits have proved themselves, through the deliberate policies and actions of their “officers”, to be far far more insidiously dangerous to life and liberty than any “terrorist” organisation, even the IRA and “Al-Quaeda” (whatever that might be), both of whom might be thought responsible for the deaths of up to 10,000 people each. The deaths probably attributable to the prevalence of “Trade” “Union” and “Workers’ Council” actions within the past 120-odd years probably run into the millions, aside from the planned and avoidable destruction of the UK’s heavy industries, docks, mining industries, railways and shipyards. (None of this needed to happen: the ability to fire all redundant labour upon the advent of better technology, thus keeping wage rates and hours to JapoChindoBraMexican levels, was prevented.)

Roll on the custard pies and rotting tomatoes….but Libertarians ought to begin speaking for real people, not just metropolitan political intellectuals like ourselves.

The coagulation-government is getting stick and rotting-cabbages from various quarters, for seeming to allow Francis Maude (who is, I admit, a bit of a slimy toad at times) to suggest that people should stock up on motor fuels before any putative strike by tanker drivers.

But I wonder…there could be a subtext here. Perhaps some clever Tory strategist thought that by artificially creating a fuel shortage at the pumps before any strike took place, the mass of inchoate but not negligible public opinion could be turned angrily against “UNITE”, whatever sort of GramscoStaliNazi front-organization that might be. I mean to say, it describes itself as a “Trade Union”, although it’s f**k-all to do with trade, and isn’t a union in any meaningful sense with regard to its members’ welfare – only its “officers’ ” wefare, power and prosperity.

Some of this unfocussed but very public mob ire might then rub off against the “Labour Party”, which predictably has failed to come out condemning the “union” – only mouthed platitudes about “the way to solve the crisis is by the negotiations”, as if there was anything meaningful for the drivers’ employers to talk about.

I just wonder if it’s a “cunning plan”. Of course, the predictable mainstream-media-response has been to toast the coagulation for its incompetence and “dangerous advice” (I mean to say! We used to keep old Duckhams 1-gallon oil cans and keep petrol in them for year after year – I always had 6 gallons in the house at any time, when in London years ago – about two-thirds of a tankful). But them the MSM is not on the side of any administration that is not overtly and aggressively GramscoStaliNazi. Perhaps because it thinks that most people viscerally are that, inand to their very bones….and they may sadly be right. Hitler got in, after all, by not misreading the mood of the German general public.

Interview with Sean Gabb


Attack the System: Interview with Sean Gabb

February 9, 2012

Keith Preston interviews Dr. Sean Gabb.Topics include: Continue reading

The rot sets in, but be of good cheer, for it usually takes quite some time.


David Davis

The Last Ditch is worth visiting from time to time. Sadly, since Tom Paine’s (that’s his screen name, as it were) wife died, he’s been writing less. I hope he recovers his former zeal for intellectually-flogging the guts out of our enemies, the GramscoStaliNazis.

A recent one is good reading, about the awful slow-motion-descent of the USA into modern British-style post-socialist horror and unredemption.

The deaths of Richard Everitt and Stephen Lawrence: compare and contrast


Note: I am writing a detailed piece on the convictions in the Lawrence case. There is some rather interesting comments in the Macpherson report about the forensic examination of garments etc see http://www.chronicleworld.org/archive/lawrence/sli-25.htm. RH Continue reading

A triple betrayal


by Richard North
http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/2011/12/triple-betrayal.html

Out today is Christopher Booker’s report on the BBC and climate change, appropriately named The BBC and Climate Change: A Triple Betrayal. It has a foreword by Antony Jay and is available online from The Global Warming Policy Foundation.

Left to me, I would not have bothered. Anyone who does not already know that the BBC is about as impartial on climate change – and on many others issues – as Judge Jeffreys on a bad day is either an innocent abroad, or themselves so imbued in warmist propaganda that they are beyond redemption. Continue reading

Confirming our opinion of the BBC


by Richard North
http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/2011/11/confirming-our-opinion.html

Under strict orders to take things “easy”, so desperate have I become that I was even driven to watching the entire edition of the 6 o’clock BBC television news on Tuesday evening – an experience worth doing occasionally, just to check on how bad the hand-wavers have become. Continue reading

The law, the media and the release of information to the police


by Robert Henderson
http://livinginamadhouse.wordpress.com/?p=1093

Robert Henderson

“Untransmitted video from August’s riots in London has been handed to police by the BBC, ITN and Sky News after Scotland Yard obtained court orders against the media organisations. “(http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15024354) Continue reading

Dear me, the BBC at the anti-capitalist-sauce, again….


David Davis

I couldn’t just let this one go: the subliminal message just chimes in so well with today’s British-State GCSE/A-level “Geography” “syllabuses”. Everyone probably believed it wholeheartedly – it was said on the “Telly”… After all, the “educationists” who produce the syllabus-twaddle just love maundering on about TNCs based in MEDCs exploiting the Pull-Factor among MDPs in LEDCs.

You couldn’t make it up: the use of so many acronyms guarantees the unemployability of any British-State-geography student in any capacity other than a Soviet Metropolitan Council planning department.

Sean Gabb v Esther Rantzen – Tonight on BBC Radio 5


by Sean Gabb

I do intend to write a Director’s Bulletin in the next day or so. This will tell you about all our broadcasting and publishing and general  outreach of the past fortnight – and it has been a lot.

For the moment, though, I’m writing to say that I’m on BBC  Radio 5 his evening – Saturday 4th June at 22:00 BST – to discuss whether  there should be laws to stop children from dressing in provocative ways and  from watching certain kinds of music video. I’ll be up against Esther Rantzen and some Tory MP whose name is still unknown.

It will be a phone-in programme, with the ability to receive  text messages and e-mails. It’s also broadcast on the Web, so it can be heard  all over the world. I’d be most grateful if you could find the time to support  me tonight. If you call in, you will probably not get on air. But the weight of  texts and e-mails can be  impressive – especially if they come from abroad.

Here are the details:

Steve Nolan Show
10pm-Midnight BST, Saturday 4th June 2011
BBC Radio 5
909/693 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/5live/
Call 0500 909 693
Text 85058
Email 606@bbc.co.uk

Philip Foster to Paul Nurse


Sir Paul Nurse
The Royal Society
6-9 Carlton House Terrace
London SW1Y 5AG

29th January 2011

 Dear Sir Paul,

I understand that the Royal Society has changed its motto from ‘Nullius in Verba’ to ‘Respect the facts’. This is unfortunate.

In your factoid-riddled Horizon programme for BBC2 you allowed a NASA computer scientist to tell the audience, without a challenge, that temperatures have risen .7 deg. during the last 50 years. This was supposed to be a problem. Yet of course 50 years ago temperatures were at their lowest since 1922 (GISS figures) and therefore such a rise is not at all surprising, especially considering that temperatures have levelled off over the last fourteen years (Dr Phil Jones in a BBC interview 2010). By choosing a convenient starting point it can seem alarming, but it is not. You should, as a scientist, have challenged his assertions – ‘nullius in verba’. But if you merely ‘respect the facts’, you are at liberty, it seems, to ignore them.

The suggestion that a rise over 30-40 years will continue is like suggesting the following:

Since June 22nd last year a small but discernable daily reduction in daylight has been taking place such that by December 22nd daylight hours had nearly halved. If this trend continues (even though there has been a small increase in the last month), in about seven or eight months‘ time there will be no more daylight. We desperately need government funding to research and cure this dangerous trend.

Unfortunately that describes rather well current AGW thinking. In investigating all dubious activities the best thing to do is to follow the money‘. And, behold, billions of dollars, pounds and euros are being spent on “research” into AGW and in subsidies for idiotic “renewable” energy sources.* It has given NASA – already a rather corrupted bureaucracy – a new lease of life. As we know, in the UK, corruption of science has grown apace along with the foolish policies of mostly very gullible politicians. It is the poorest who now suffer the most – carbon taxed and bullied into expensive energy consumption (59p per litre of petrol is a carbon tax – the fuel escalator introduced by conservative chancellor Clarke as a designated green tax).

I am tempted to suggest you should stick to genetics. Climate is clearly outside your comfort zone.

 Yours sincerely,

Rev Philip Foster MA
1 Barnfield, Common Lane,
Hemingford Abbots,
Cambridgeshire PE28 9AX
01480 399098

* particularly idiotic as peak oil/gas is now hundreds of years away and peak coal not even on the horizon. Burning fossil fuels is wholly beneficial to the biosphere.

David Webb on the Managerial State


http://www.corkirish.com/wordpress/archives/1423

The basic question of politics is “who does what to whom?” This was put a little more succintly in Russian by Vladimir Lenin as “kto, kogo”, “who? whom?” He was a Marxist with a fondness for class analysis of society, but that does not reduce the force of his view that the fundamental facts behind any society are who the ruling class are and who the ruled.

It is quite false to believe that Britain is capitalist or bourgeois society. This is the most important theoretical point that needs to be grasped. Without an understanding of this, all other comment on British society will be superfluous. James Burnham, the former Trotskyist who became a conservative, and whose writings underpinned the views of the US conservative (now sadly deceased), Sam Francis, believed that bourgeois society had been replaced by “managerialism”. The more vulgar forms of Marxism had posited a linear progression, whereby slavery gave way to feudalism, feudalism to capitalism, and thus ultimately to socialism and communism. What else could there be after capitalism?

We have seen a greater expansion of the managerial state than in Burnham’s times, and are therefore in a position to agree with his thesis that after the bourgeoisie comes the managerial class. Note that I do not assert any linear progression: the managerial class has replaced the bourgeoisie, but it didn’t have to happen this way. However that may be, there are few genuine “bourgeois” running large businesses today. The nineteenth-century style owner-manager, whereby a rich individual owned his cotton factory and everything in it, does not exist today. Most businesses are joint-stock corporations. The owners are actually pension funds and private investors, and the operations of the company itself are controlled by a class of managers.

Now, it would be possible to argue that the greater complexity of big business today, the larger size of the enterprises and their greater number of employees mean that an owner, a single bourgeois, could never hope to manage his company singlehandedly today. Surely he would need chief financial officers, accountants, personnel managers and so forth. From that point of view, economic growth has led to a technocratic future, with the various managerial functions occupying various technocratic roles in business.

I am not one of those libertarians who would like to attack big business and replace it by smaller business units. But there is a certain amount of merit to the view that the greater complexity of business today has led to a proliferation of technocratic roles within businesses, and in particularly large businesses. Without a bureacratisation of the polity, however, such a managerial stratum would never have emerged as the ruling elite of society as a whole.

It was pointed out by Sam Francis that the same types of people–in fact a managerial elite–was running everything, both private- and public-sector, today. The technocratic style of the managerial roles allows managers to move seemlessly between the sectors. There is no reason why a personnel manager of, say, a drinks company, should not move over to the Church of England to perform the same role, and then into the civil service and then back into the private sector. The role–the technocratic function–is the same. Similarly, an accountant with an oil firm can get a job in the Salvation Army, and then the Ministry of Defence, and then maybe a EU institution. Whereas once all these organisations would have employed different types of

people, the managers are an identikit class.

This is partly a function of the education system, which is highly influenced by political priorities. Much of the university syllabus in many subjects is taken up with various forms of promotion of egalitarianism, producing a uniformity of view among the would-be managers. However, this in turn is also a function of the politicisation of culture. The larger state has been created, ostensibly in response to demands for greater government intervention to even up socioeconomic outcomes. However, the university-educated are well-placed to take advantage of such greater government spending, and more likely to speak the politically correct jargon of the managerial class.

Take, for example, multi-culturalism. This political obsession, once confined to “loony left” councils, is now preached in the universities and promoted by all state bodies and all private-sector companies. It seems extraordinary that private companies should take part in political campaigns, but all companies are required to have “equal opportunities” policies–which frequently do not amount to a promotion of “equal opportunities” at all–and have therefore staff members occupied with the administration of and promotion of this agenda. A cursory glance at well-paid job vacancies today shows that many of these are connected with the open promotion of this political agenda, creating a relatively large class of people who are doing the bidding of the political elite as a matter of course in their day-to-day work. It is important to realise that this agenda blurs the distinction between the public and private sectors, creating a class of people who move between both, using this political agenda as a vehicle for their career aims.

Multi-culturalism bring in its wake a slew of jobs in the police force, the prison service, the courts, insurance (because of higher crime), counter-terrorism, border controls and even translation services, all of which are either parasitical on the political agenda of multi-culturalism or justified as an attempt to address the social dislocations caused by having non-integrated ethnic communities in our country. While multi-culturalism is in many ways the most prominent of the elite’s obsessions, and important because the promotion of mass immigration threatens to dispossess the British of their homeland, it is, from the point of view of the elite, but one of many “causes” that justify public spending, well-heeled jobs in the public sector and equivalent jobs in the private sector.

First of all, there are other forms of egalitarianism, including feminism and the “gay rights” agenda. There are organisations public and private (and many of the private ones are funded or partly funded by the state) promoting this agenda, and jobs to be had in both public and private sector in connection with it. Often the egalitarian agenda is wrapped up in one department, with “human resource” staff charged with complying with legislation on racial, sexual and sexual orientation equality, as well as a number of other issues (such as disability) that are spawning public- and private-sector technocratic employment. However, feminism and “gay rights” produce their own spin-offs too. They justify intrusive government intervention in the form of family courts, social workers, employment tribunals–and even adoption agencies are reported in the press as being involved in an attempt to promote the “gay rights” agenda. Solicitors benefit financially from family break-up, and then there is the so-called Child Support Agency bureaucracy, with its own technocratic and financial interest in the breakdown of family values and the promotion of state intervention in the area.

So called environmentalism is another bureaucratic growth area. A large number of public-sector jobs result directly from claims that economic growth is fuelling “global warming”. Jobs in academia and the Metereological Office, both paid for from the public purse, are dependent on political interest in this area, and local councils are employing large phalanxes of “carbon change co-ordinators”. A number of charities, quangos and EU bodies are parasitical on the environmental agenda.

Health and safety has metamorphosised from an area characterised by common sense to one where common sense is not allowed to intervene, as it would threaten public-sector and private-sector jobs. The Health and Safety Executive is a gross example of technocratic employment in this area, but a large number of private-sector jobs are in this area, with fatuous business expenditure on “training” in this area, including trivial and absurd examples, such as “training” in the movement of a chair.

Public health is a growth area too. Despite the financial crisis, £4bn has been announced in spending to influence health prevention behaviour in the areas of obesity and smoking. There is little evidence that bureaucracies trying to influence personal health prevention behaviour work, but the jobs are well-paid, and the ideology behind them provides the sense of self-righteousness that motivates the people working for the state in this area. Jobs in academia also leech from the public purse in this area, invariably revolving around research showing a “link” between various types of behaviour and health outcomes, often of questionable logic. Publicly funded media, such as the BBC, also devote great space to these issues. Dyslexia, dyscalcula, hyperactivity and other obsessions are also essentially parasitic on the public purse and depend on publicly funded media and academic willingness to promote the various panics or concerns that lead to the opening of the public purse-strings. The number of people involved in the “AIDS establishment”, the number of people publicly funded to treat HIV/AIDS or promote a panic over the issue, exceeds the number of people with AIDS in the UK.

It is important to note that these areas of public concern have a large ideological component. Any ruling elite depends, not on physical force, but on cultural hegemony to support its rule. With great media, political and academic resources at their disposal to promote their points of view, invariably requiring government expenditure and bureaucratic positions to address alleged evils and often requiring private-sector participation in the campaigns, the managerial elite is in a position to influence a broader range of the population. People who are not conceivably part of the managerial elite espouse the managerial ideologies. One can cite, for example, schoolteachers who think it is appropriate to lock a primary schoolchild alone in a classroom while police are summoned to deal with a “racist” incident of the most utterly trivial kind or the local council staff who cite the health and safety ideology to justify an inability to remove household waste that cannot be pulled with two fingers alone. In addition to the elite or managerial-level jobs that are involved in promoting bureaucratic intervention of many kinds, there are numerous (millions?) of lower-level hangers-on, people who abuse their positions in schools, hospitals, companies or government offices, and justify their behaviour by reference to one or more of the managerial ideologies.

However, even this would not be enough to explain the dominance of the technocratic point of view in society. Why do so many business leaders spout these ideologies? It seems clear that a crisis of elite belief in the nation-state and British culture has led to a search for a new, more sustainable ideology in a globalised world. Democracy appears less meaningful once the national culture has been debunked and the population, once united by a common culture, reduced to a meaningless collection of people with little connection between themselves by means of multi-culturalism and immigration. The various managerial ideologies provide a way of looking at the world that is a replacement for Christianity, patriotism and the nation-state. The business class has therefore been ideologically captured by the new managerial elite, at least to the extent that they are prepared to mouth the managerial rhetoric. It makes no difference that many business leaders will not privately be sincere about anti-racism, egalitarianism, helping Third World development, environmentalism and all the rest; their sincerity need be no greater than their previous support a century ago for Britain’s traditional Christian culture.

As a consequence, the business and state-sector sections of the elite are able to unite behind an agenda in a way that few businesses can speak out against things like climate change levies and carbon taxes. The business leaders themselves are not personally majority owners of their companies, although they may own some shares. They are not the family-firm bourgeois of previous centuries, but in fact people who have risen up the managerial ranks, spouting the various managerial ideologies on their way up.

In addition to the various “causes”, huge government expenditure in health, education, housing and social security provides massive technocratic job opportunities, as well as giving political power to public-sector unions. Firstly, the large state is supported by many businesses, who are able to privatise profits and nationalise costs. One can cite big business support for cheap labour immigration, which involves huge costs for the taxpayer in the form of crime, the promotion of multi-culturalism and social anomie. Many businesses are directly dependent on state spending, as with solicitors (dependent on crime and family break-up), accountants (dependent on a state that levies high taxes), companies working in the health area, and any private-sector body or company getting any kind of grant from the local or British governments, or the EU. High fees charged by nursing homes or residential homes for the elderly, which frequently exceed the cost of staying in five-star hotels, depend directly on the government’s intervention in the area of “social protection”, and the willingness of the taxpayer to pay exorbitant fees. Lower down the food chain, landlords are able to charge absurd rents in poor areas owing to the housing benefit, adding a further layer of individuals who support the state technocracy and the levying of high taxes to support it.

The charities were once voluntary organisations, but are now mainly semi-quangoised and receive a good deal of their money from the state. The state funds them firstly by not levying tax on them; this is equivalent to a direct grant. But in addition to that, most of the large charities receive explicit state funding, and have halted much of their non-political work. Charities like Barnardo’s and the NSPCC have closed down most of their children’s homes and are spending most of their money on campaigns against Borstals for young offenders and campaigns in support of social workers and other forms of state intervention in the family. They do not campaign for policies to promote the traditional family, although this would achieve nearly all of their stated aims, as such a campaign would offend the political elite. The proliferation of quangos is another area where political campaigns are used to leech off the public purse. Quangos promoting health or environmentalism or egalitarianism abound, and the recent “cuts” by the Cameron government have shown that the Conservative Party will only close down the smallest quangos with the smallest budgets, rather than touch the employment opportunities of the technocratic elite.

Despite the fact, therefore, that we are told we operate a free market, it is clear that the state is spending nearly half of GDP (the figures are distorted by tax credits and the tax-exempt status of charities; were the beneficiaries of those schemes deemed first to have paid all their taxes and then received a grant, it would be seen the state is larger than official figures show), and that much of the private sector is also dependent on public policy, state spending or the managerial ideologies in various ways. And the private-sector part of the economy is not run by owner-managers, but by people who have worked their way up in the managerial elite. Consequently, it is not surprising that all the political parties are remarkably unanimous in their support for managerial ideologies, and that the UK is signed up to membership of a number of international bureaucracies that provide job opportunities for technocrats and aim to lay down public policy on an international basis. Our laws are mainly issued by a technocracy based in Brussels over which we have no proper control.

It is clear therefore that we are not in the same circumstance as nineteenth-century Britain, where the state spent 7% of GDP, most companies were controlled by the families or entrepreneurs that founded them, and there was little in the way of public-sector employment, whether domestic or international, and no pressure on private-sector companies to promote political agendas. If the laisser faire free market is at one end of the spectrum, where more than 90% of economic activity is private and not subject to much in the way of taxation or regulation, then communism lies at the other end of the spectrum, where more than 90% of economic activity is directed by the state. We clearly lie in the middle, with a “mixed” economy, but the nature of the mix is the primacy of public expenditure, and the united nature of the senior echelons of the elite who move between the public and private bodies with ease, speaking their politically correct jargon fluently, and noting that they mix with people of the same type as themselves, whether in the private sector or the public sector or in multilateral institutions, such as the EU.

It would be as wrong to characterise the UK as capitalist–”bourgeois”–as it would be to characterise it as “communist”. This is why the ruling class is not essentially based on the relatively small number of private-sector enterpreneurs as if this were still the nineteenth century, but on the managerial elite of people who support massive state intervention and speak a language of government control. It is important to note that the economy as a whole is run in the interests of these people. The “cuts” going ahead now have in the main been directly away from the managerial elite. Few quangos are affected. The core civil service is hardly touched. And wasteful state expenditure in the arena of managerial ideologies remains untouched. While propaganda by the BBC and others alleges that the point of the large state is to help the vulnerable, it seems clear that the real scroungers are the managerial elite themselves. They are not all working in the public sector, but it is reasonable to believe that a collapse of public-sector spending and an end to state intervention would lead to a reduction in job opportunities in the private sector too for such people. After all, race and diversity personnel are only needed because the state requires it.

It is interesting to see the argument that the government has to pay the market rate for its senior managers. Of course the market for senior managers is greatly distorted by the availability of so many positions in the public sector for such people. Just think, if Whitehall no longer paid salaries over £40K, how many of the highly paid state officials could find highly paid jobs in the private sector? Some could, but not all, as there is not the demand for so many of them in the private sector. For this reason, it is not private-sector salaries that are dragging up public-sector ones, but the other way round. Without so many high-salary public-sector posts available, it is likely that private-sector salaries for senior managers would be lower than they are now. In other words, the “egalitarians” have managed to create a socioeconomic setup that works to their financial advantage, and in fact fosters social inequality. If social inequality has risen over the decades, it is because of the size of the state sector, which is committed to providing salaries equal to those in the private sector, but which has effectively doubled the market for highly qualified personnel (or for utterly non-qualified personnel who speak managerial ideologies fluently), and thus driven up salaries throughout the upper echelons of the public and private sector.

It seems clear that in terms of “who? whom?”, our society is run for the benefit of the managerial elite. State spending is justified on the basis of helping the vulnerable, but the greatest beneficiaries are state employees themselves, as well as highly paid individuals throughout the economy who benefit from the general effect state spending has of promoting wage inequality. I am not arguing that we should intervene to prevent wage inequality: I am arguing that our intervention to prevent inequality is what underpins wage inequality, and that we should stop such intervention.

The “who? whom?” approach is important because it helps us identify who British society is run for. By contrast, we are constantly told we live in a democracy. But democracy is not a form of society in itself. If slave-owners were the beneficiaries or ruling class of slave societies, as the lords were in feudalism, and the bourgeoisie in capitalism, are we to believe that the ruling class of “democratic societies” are the broad mass of the people themselves? That the unemployed lout collecting his dole cheque is in fact part of the ruling stratum of society? Clearly, democracy is not, and cannot be, a form of organisation of society. There may be an electoral mechanism, but there are still class faultlines in society, and those who are in the driving seat socially are usually able to manipulate public opinion and democracy to their ends. Democracy is therefore just another form of oligarchy.

I am not denying that there must be a ruling elite, and so therefore democracy in its true sense is impossible. But we have becomes serfs to the managerial elite where we could be free people. A great deal of freedoms were allowed us under the former bourgeois elite, and British culture gave a structure of belonging to all those in society. Under the managerialists, we have lost our liberties and our social identity and end up supporting a vast superstructure of state hangers-on with our taxes. We would be better off without them.

I just came up with this on bookface


David Davis

“The greens know they will have to break us on this planet, or lose the war”….

http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=662052517&v=wall&story_fbid=118640131506476#!/profile.php?id=662052517&v=wall&story_fbid=149201721787089&ref=mf

The best thing on telly in 1983



Sean Gabb

Most other people seem to have hated it. But this is the only television I watched in 1983, and I loved every minute. I even feel a slight influence on the writings of Richard Blake.

David Robert Gibson Reviews Sean Gabb on Popular Culture


 http://www.vimeo.com/14131027

What a fine talk! – clear, persuasive, full of content and relevant asides, succinct but unhurried – I enjoyed it, belatedly alas, and conserved it upon several disk drives. My own hope is principally for a catastrophic collapse of this truly evil Champagne Socialistic-Corporatist Regime, but as you said it is a delight one cannot depend upon in short order. I take you point, strongly, that while we are waiting/a workable alternative task is *to dominate popular culture*, just as the fashionable Left have done so thoroughly this past 60 years. That Was The Week That Was and Till Death Us Do Part are early examples.

I found it instructive that you mentioned the abysmal, culturally blind failure of the apparently so dominant Thatcher 1980′s government to sponsor relatively conservative/libertarian folk like Hill, Williams, and Everett (I did not know that Bernard Bresslaw took an interest in Chris Tame’s bookshop!). They could also have brought Hughie Green out of a retirement enforced by proto-PC types at Thames Television. I do not consider that I have any outstanding talent as a scriptwriter or entertainer, so I will have to leave the public delegitimisation of this nasty Regime to others. I do so hope they can achieve it as, for examples, in the French and Czechoslovakian Revolutions that you described. The Champagne Corporatists have left open goals a plenty – the EU, variations on Quantitative Easing, hidden externalities of the consumerist system, the gross unfairness and growing fallout from mass immigration, inverted crime policies, uncontrolled profligate waste, the relentless demoralisation of decent people, and so on and on.

David Robert Gibson

Sean on the Beeb Tonight!


On the back of my earlier news release about price floors for alcohol, I’ve been booked for a debate on BBC Radio 5 Live tonight at 10pm BST (Friday 21st May 2010). The Presenter will be Stephen Nolan. I shall be up against a Professor Ian Gilmore, who is a liver specialist convinced that higher prices are the only path to saving us all from killing ourselves with drink. If you want to listen, Radio 5 is somewhere on the Medium Wave and on Freeview. Otherwise, you can go here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/5live/    

If you want to contribute to the discussion, here are all the contact details:

Call: 0500 909 693

SMS/MMS: 85058

Email: nolan@bbc.co.uk

Sean Gabb – BBC Interview on Compulsory Voting


http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2010-05-07-compulsoryvoting-sig.mp3

Libertarian Alliance Bulletin


Director’s Bulletin
26th March 2010

Greetings to all. Here are some of the latest doings of the Libertarian Alliance:

1. The third Annual Chris R. Tame Memorial Lecture and Drinks Reception

Date: Monday 10th May 2010 between 6.30pm and 9.00pm at the National Liberal Club, One Whitehall Place, London SW1 (nearest tube Embankment).
Subject: Public Goods and Private Action: How Voluntary Action Can Provide Law, Welfare and Infrastructure – and Build a Good Society
Speaker: Dr. Stephen Davies

The dress code for this event is lounge suit or smart casual.
To confirm your attendance please RSVP Dr. Helen Evans at hsevans@btinternet.com

Dr. Stephen Davies is Program Officer for the Institute of Humane Studies. He joined HIS from the UK where he was Senior Lecturer in the Department of History and Economic History at Manchester Metropolitan University. He has worked at IHS before, in 1991 and in 1992-93, as well as teaching at many Summer Seminars and events over the years. He has also been a Visiting Scholar at the Social Philosophy and Policy Center at Bowling Green. A historian, he graduated from St. Andrews University in Scotland in 1976 and grained his PhD from the same institution in 1984. He was co-editor with Dr. Nigel Ashford of The Dictionary of Conservative and Libertarian Thought (Routledge, 1991) and wrote several entries for The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism edited by Ronald Hamowy (Sage, 2008), including the general introduction. He is also the author of Empiricism and History (Palgrave Macmillan, 2003) and of several articles and essays on topics including the private provision of public goods and the history of crime and criminal justice. He has recently completed a book on the history of the world since 1250 and the origins of modernity. Among his other interests are science fiction and the fortunes of Manchester City. Dr. Davies works on many of the Institute’s educational programs, teaches at summer seminars, liaises with the HIS faculty network, and provides academic career advice and support to graduate students.

2.  Public CIB Meeting – Free Admission, Saturday 17th April 2010, 2.30pm to 4.30pm

CARRS LANE CHURCH CENTRE, Carrs Lane, Birmingham B4 7SX (10 minutes walk from city centre New Street station) See website www.carrslane.co.uk for directions

TIME FOR TRUTH: Who Speaks for the People of Britain?

In the Chair: GEORGE WEST – Chairman, Campaign for an Independent Britain

Speakers

Dr. SEAN GABB, Director The Libertarian Alliance
FIONA McEVOY, The Taxpayers Alliance, West Midlands
STUART NOTHOLT, Vice-Chairman Campaign for an Independent Britain & organiser of General Election “Candidate 2010”

Published by The Campaign for an Independent Britain www.eurosceptic.org.uk For 35 years, CIB has led efforts to safeguard our nation’s sovereignty. We are a democratic, independent and strictly remaining a non-party political pressure group, supported by membership subscriptions and donations from members of the public. Our objective is Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union whilst maintaining trading and friendly relations with other countries. Enquiries 07092 857684

3. Sean Gabb in The Daily Express

The front page headline in today’s issue of The Daily Express is “New EU Gestapo spies on Britons” (http://tinyurl.com/y85av9r). This is all about the latest outrage from the European Union, and carries a long quotation from the Thoughts of Director Gabb. He says: “It doesn’t surprise me that Europol has been handed these rather frightening powers,… We now live in a pan-European state so it was to be expected that it would have a federal police force with powers over us….There is a real danger that opposition to EU policies could make an individual liable to arrest…. For example, if Brussels adopts a hard-line stance on climate change, it’s conceivable that someone who broadcasts their scepticism of climate change may be accused of committing an environmental crime because they have undermined the EU’s efforts to save mankind.”

4. Sean Gabb in Vdare

I have written two articles this year for Peter Brimelow’s on-line journal VDare (http://vdare.com/gabb/index.htm). These are both about the persecution by the British State of the British National Party. I have had a few displeased comments on these. However, what is now being done to the BNP provides a good summary of how totalitarian England has become in the past few decades. It would all have been unthinkable back in the days when I used to amuse my friends with predictions of a police state. Another point worth making is that libertarians are allowed to defend the BNP, but only in this way: “I hate and deplore these evil men. I am myself Jewish/gay/transgendered/one-third-Tibetan. But, purely from a (possibly misguided) commitment to old-fashioned liberalism, I do beg you not to put them in prison.” To take this line is to concede moral hegemony to the left. You probably get away with defending the rights of the BNP in much the same way as camp entertainers like Liberace and Larry Grayson were seldom denounced as homosexuals. You do nothing to defend freedom of speech. A better defence is as follows: “Nick Griffin and his friends should have an absolute right to speak as they please on public issues. This was an unquestioned right in England before 1965. So far as it is no longer a right, we no longer live in a free country.”

5.Sean Gabb on Television

On the 7th March 2010, I went on the BBC1 television programme “The Big Questions”. My subject was whether voting should be made compulsory. The assumption behind the debate was that: voting is good, people are not voting in the right numbers, and so what should be done to raise the turnout? I disrupted proceedings by pointing out that people are not voting because the politicians are all scum. You can view my contribution here: http://www.vimeo.com/10010978

6. Speech on Libertarianism

On the 17th March 2010, I gave a speech to the Politics Society of The Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School on libertarianism. I only had twenty minutes for may own speech, followed by twenty of questions, and this had to be a basic introduction. But I think I covered the main points. You can find the speech here: http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2010-03-17-hbaske-sig.mp3

7. Libertarian Alliance Meetings

Our friends over at the other Libertarian Alliance continue with their monthly meetings. I can hardly ever get up to London to attend these. But they always look very interesting, and I receive endless reports of how interesting they have been. For details of the next meeting, contact David McDonagh for details: mcdonagh_d@yahoo.co.uk

8. Richard Blake Activities

Just before Christmas, my dear friend Mr Blake put the finishing touches to his masterpiece “Blood of Alexandria”. This is a sensitive account of land reform and mass-murder in late Byzantine Egypt. It will be published by Hodder & Stoughton in June 2010. You can pre-order copies from Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/yb4qvms He is now putting the last touches to his “Sword of Damascus”, which is a novel about Greek Fire and how the Arabs never laid hands on the secret. This will not be available until June 2011. But Mr Blake believes in having a long pipeline. Once “Sword of Damascus” is completed – probably in the next fortnight – he will settle properly to work on an as yet untitled thriller. It is set in the July of 2014. This is a world in which neither world wars happened. The map is still impressively red. The pound is worth a pound. The Triple Monarchy rules Central Europe with benign inefficiency. America, following the Second Civil War (1923-8), has become a nightmarish tyranny where a man can be shot on the spot for smoking. There is a serial sex killer on the prowl in London and Prague….

9. Sean Gabb on Facebook

I was nagged into joining this a few weeks ago. Unlike Linkedin, that was a complete waste of time, this has been most interesting. http://www.facebook.com/sean.gabb 

Best wishes to all.

Sean on Telly Yesterday


by Sean Gabb

Dear All,

I made a brief appearance yesterday on BBC1′s “The Big Question”, where I
argued that voting should not be made compulsory. Here is the relevant
footage: http://www.vimeo.com/10010978

On Saturday the 6th March 2010, I recorded a long interview with Al Gore’s
television station all about the decriminalisation of incest. Stand by for
news about where to find this.

Tomorrow morning, I shall be interviewed by BBC Radio Bristol about CCTV
cameras. I will upload the recording of this shortly after.

On the 17th March 2010, I shall be talking to Haberdashers’ Aske’s school
for boys all about libertarianism.

On the 24th April 2010, I shall be speaking at this event:

PUBLIC MEETING
FREE ADMISSION
Saturday 17th April 2010
2.30pm to 4.30pm

CARRS LANE CHURCH CENTRE
Carrs Lane, Birmingham B4 7SX
10 minutes walk from city centre New Street station.
See website http://www.carrslane.co.uk for directions

TIME FOR TRUTH
Who Speaks for the People of Britain?

In the Chair
GEORGE WEST
Chairman, Campaign for an Independent Britain

Speakers

Dr. SEAN GABB
Director The Libertarian Alliance

FIONA McEVOY
The Taxpayers Alliance, West Midlands

STUART NOTHOLT
Vice-Chairman Campaign for an Independent Britain & organiser of General
Election “Candidate 2010″

Published by The Campaign for an Independent Britain
http://www.eurosceptic.org.uk. For 35 years,CIB has led efforts to safeguard our
nation’s sovereignty. We are a democratic, independent and strictly
remaining a non-party political pressure group, supported by membership
subscriptions and donations from members of the public. Our objective is
Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union whilst maintaining trading
and friendly relations with other countries

. Enquiries 07092 857684

Biased BBC: BBC EDITOR IS CLIMATE CHANGE ACTIVIST


BBC EDITOR IS CLIMATE CHANGE ACTIVIST

Sean Gabb

>> Monday, December 28, 2009

I’ve become increasingly convinced that the BBC is part of an international conspiracy about ‘climate change’. It isn’t simply that the reporting is so biased; it’s also because there seems to be a concerted effort to make sure that whatever so-called sceptics discover, for example over Climategate, the warmists bounce straight back with a new set of warped theories or bent facts to support their arguments. The feed of material is relentless, as if it is coming from an organised source. Over the holidays, I’ve been doing some digging on this, and I wanted to share one of my first findings.
A BBC journalist called Peter Thomson is not a household name in this country, but he’s the environment editor of the BBC programme (made jointly with WGBH Boston and RPI) The World, which on a daily basis pushes out climate scare stories to millions of people. Mr Thomson, it turns out, is also the secretary of the Society of Environmental Journalists, a US organisation, the main purpose of which is to spread alarmism through a ‘guide’ about ‘climate change’(masked of course, under the cloak of ‘objectivity’). There can be no doubt that this is a campaigining organisation which wants to achieve political change because it believes that the world needs to reduce CO2 emissions.
Mr Thomson’s activism does not stop there. He’s also a member of the advisory board of the Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting, yet another international organisation with alarmist goals. It, too, publishes a guide to how journalists should cover ‘climate change’; in truly chilling McCarthyite terms, the introduction explains how anyone who disagrees with “the consensus” should be ignored and that journalists should frantically pester editors to publish ‘climate change’ scare stories.
So, to recap. One of the BBC’s most senior editors responsible for environmental reporting has formal roles at the epicentre of a worldwide coinspiracy among ‘climate change’ alarmists. Not only that, he is assisting in the international propagation of so-called science communication guides, the main purpose of which are to enlist other journalists to spread the same lies in which he also believes. I suspect there’s a whole phalanx of Peter Thomsons, all feeding the BBC’s insatiable appetite to feed us with moonshine.
Update: Richard North, of EU Referendum, has kindly provided further information about BBC propagandists. Nik Gowing, a prominent – and rather humourless – BBC World Service presenter, has a no-doubt lucrative sideline in chairing ‘climate change’ conferences convened by the alarmist-in-chief, IPCC head Dr Ravendra Pachauri.

Biased BBC: BBC EDITOR IS CLIMATE CHANGE ACTIVIST

Griffin and the BBC – The Alf Garnett factor


Robert Henderson

In the 1960s one of the most celebrated British sit-coms Till Death Us Do Part appeared. Its central character was an elderly working class Londoner Alf Garnett (For American readers his character inspired that of Archie Bunker).

Garnett’s most noted characteristic was what we would call these days being non-PC, especially about race and immigration. The author Johnny Speight swore blind that he had no sympathy with the character’s views and he had created him only to show how bigoted and unpalatable they were. (The suspicion grew as the character of Garnett became more and more dominant in the sit-com and ever more outrageous in his words that Speight was actually peddling his own secret views. Speight vehemently denied this but the accusation followed him to his grave.)

The effect of the Garnett character was the exact opposite of Speight’s stated intention because he became a character who, far from being treated universally as a figure of fun or despicable, was taken by many people as a conduit for their opinions, opinions which otherwise were even in those days severely censored by a liberal media and a political class (with the exception of Enoch Powell) which had already fallen under the liberal Omerta on honest discussion of race and immigration. (The first British Race Relations Act was passed in 1965).

Something similar to the Alf Garnett effect has taken place with the BNP. It did not really matter how well or badly Griffin did on Question Time. What counted was the fact he was on it saying, amongst a good deal of confused nonsense, what large numbers of Britons felt about mass immigration and the multi-cultural reign of terror which prevents people in any normal circumstances saying what they feel about its consequences. That Griffin was crude in his claims, lacking in examples to back up his claims even where examples were readily available, for example he failed to quote one of the many Churchill statements on race which would be considered unequivocally racist today by the liberal bigot definition, and palpably nervous was of little account. What mattered was that he was saying things which had not been said in such a forum for many a long year.

The BBC, hermetically wrapped in their liberal bigot cocoon, played into his hands. There was never going to be a detailed discussion of the issues and the choice of a panel which was not only universally hostile to Griffin and to any honest discussion of immigration, but also emblematic in its make up of the grip that politically correctness has got on this country with three members of ethnic minorities out of the five panel members – Jack Straw (Jewish), Sayeeda Warsi (Asian Muslim), Bonnie Greer (black American) – ensured that the viewer would see the programme as an exercise in liberal elite control. (Had I been Griffin, before I said anything else I would have pointed out the unrepresentative nature of the panel. Coincidentally, Greer is the woman I crossed swords with over Obama’s Nobel Prize on BBC Radio 5 a couple of weeks ago. List members will be delighted to hear that for Ms Greer the panel far from being an unrepresentative travesty “celebrated a racial mix. Sayeeda Wasi was amazing and I was very moved to hear about Jack Straw’s Jewish background. I had no idea. (Telegraph 24/9/2009″. Exactly how someone supposedly very well attuned to British politics could not know Straw is Jewish is a mystery only Ms Greer, a UK resident for 23 years, can explain. Equally difficult to explain is why the BBC think she, someone who has never been elected to public office in her life, deserves to be wheeled out to give her political opinions so often.)

Add in the chairman David Dimbleby’s grossly biased questioning of Griffin – “Is it fair that the BNP has hijacked Churchill as its own?” – and the choice of questioners (disproportionately ethnic) and universally hostile questions from the audience and none but the most dishonest liberal bigot could see the programme as anything other than hideously unbalanced and unfair.

The other mistakes Griffin made were:

(1) trying to ingratiate himself with other panel members especially Greer.

(2) Smiling too much.

(3) Getting into ridiculous discussions about whether the indigenous population had been in the islands 17,000 years or not – they haven’t and even if they had it would be irrelevant.

(4) Absurdly playing the pc game by claiming that the colour of skin does not matter, the determining factor of acceptability being how long a people have been in a country, absurd because the BNP’s position has been unequivocally that race matters right up to the present, including the banning of non-whites from membership.

The most interesting single response came from Straw when Griffin was being questioned by Dimbleby on the subject of the Holocaust. Griffin said that he could not explain his original position on the Holocaust because that would put him at risk of being extradited to places such as Germany on an European Arrest Warrant. Straw immediately jumped in and stated categorically that it could not happen. This is nonsense as Holocaust Denial is one of the categories of crimes extraditable under the warrant. As a one time Foreign Secretary, a lawyer and now Justice Minister, Straw must have known that what he said was untrue. (BTW his real name is John Straw. Whilst at university he changed it to Jack Straw, in imitation of the Peasant’s Revolt leader).

It wasn’t only Griffin who was nervous on that programme, it was also Jack Straw and Chris Huhne, both of whom were utterly terrified and incoherent when the question of immigration over the past 12 years was discussed. That is why they mainstream politicians fear the BNP: they force discussion on the ultimate treason which is mass immigration. – Griffin has given so many hostages to fortune in the past with the Holocaust denial and dalliance with the likes of the Klu Klux Klan that it tells you all you need to know about the utter failure of mainstream British parties to deal with immigration that they have had the success that they have had. Griffin and the BNP are catalysts to drive the major parties towards a more reasonable position of immigration. They are doing that regardless of the quality of the membership or leader.

Some idea of the extent to which the British people feel betrayed by their political elite can be seen from the facts that 8 million tuned in – a phenomenally high number for a UK politics programme – and over 500k of hits were made to the BNP website in the next 24 hours.

The Question Time programme is on the BBC IPlayer for another 4 days. Just go to the BBC website and type in Question time and the link will come up near the top of the page. RH

Sean Gabb on the Telly


Sean Gabb, “The Big Question”, 4th October 2009 from Sean Gabb on Vimeo.

Sean Gabb, “The Big Question”, 4th October 2009 from Sean Gabb on Vimeo.

Will the first libertarian State (minimalist) have to be armed to the teeth against foreing Statists? Discuss.


David Davis

I do worry about this, really I do: and I lie awake at night and I do not know what to suggest.

It does occur to one that in the event of a truly Libertarian “government” – if that’s not oxymoronic – arriving in power somewhere any time soon – and I don’t somehow think it will be here in the UK – what will we do about the following?  

By this I mean the inevitable ire, fulminations, threats, missiles such as the Shithead-3, the Gramsci-VII, the Fabian-V, the Skcidpan-flying-dustbin-Mark37,478-people’s-sword (based as always on the V-2 and about as effective as seen in 1991) sanctions (you name it, we didn’t invent it!) outright attempts at piracy of out trading-ships on the High Seas by the “people’s spontaneously-arising-revolutionary forces of the” states-most-threatened, and the like?

And what is all this sword-iconography about, that “people’s states” seem to affect strongly? Like this stuff?

I do not mean to be churlish about people who sell us things, but why do that when others do or did this?

 

Must like swords, then

Must like swords, then

I confess that I don’t see the point. I don’t think even the statist forces of the UK do swords much on their badges. Swords are old hat (bad pun.)

Perhaps they still use them as machinery to behead people. Well then, personally, I believe that to be repellent and disgusting and (even) very very pre-barbarian, and I would put a stop to it in Westminster now  __in__  all those “nations” (Ha!) who do it today, and I’d go after the f****rs on the High seas if needed. As you all know, this writer does not favour the death penalty under the present cicumstances here, for this reason:-

For we cannot delegate to the Agency at Westminster any rights that we do not ourselves posess.

But to get back to the point of this post, as I have to go out and do orange-diode-stuff to the meters on the Steel Beast for a bit, a Libertarian Admministration would have hard choices: I don’t think all of them will involve domestic policy decisions – which will be easy as we can just fire everybody on the State-payroll, raze the buildings, and mallet the hard-drives of the State departments that will need to be “let go”.

I think some decisions will involve what foreign powers think of us, and I don’t think they will be initially friendly.

Really, I was just looking at this stuff, and thinking strategically. Obviously battleships are a no-no, as they are noe deadmeat, but you get the point.#

Anna Bramwell (who he?), environmentalism, and fascism


David Davis

Scary, scary stuff.

It confirms all I have ever suspected about GreeNazis and environmentalists.

I am indebted to davidncl for pointing to it, somewhere else, I think on Mr Eugenides, somewhere on his comment thread for this piece here.

These mountebanks may have claimed when they didn’t need to (but what was allowed), but they’ve got more style than the new labour NKVD


David Davis

Here’s the link for what they had, for the “second homes” shown below. I can’t be arsed to type or copy-paste all the figures. Anyway, the takings by these clowns don’t appear to be worse than any other MPs’ claims, and certainly less shamelessly-vast than ZanuLieBorg.

But their houses are much more interesting, and quintessentially English –  almost like the sort I’d have loved to own, had I been luckier or more competent in my life. Oh well never mind.

And….

When they have “left Parliament”, they can always model for the Boden Catalogue. Or Hackett.

aduncanjohnroberts_1405501iahazelhurstuppadan_1405516iasteenapexrichardl_1405500idcameronjohnrobert_1405499idhamorytonyprimesw_1405495idhoggianjonesiil_1405493igeorgeosbornemikef_1405492ijarbuthnotjeffgilb_1405491ijmaplesgeoffpughjo_1405489imspicerpetermacdia_1405488ioletwin_1405523i

Paul Staines – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Sean Gabb

Paul Staines – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Guido Fawkes, never let it be forgotten, is one of us.

The video he linked to this morning, from some people called “don’t panic”, is humorous:-

If he showed it, he’d get poison-umbrella-tipped –  but we can put it up.

Well, who would have thought it!


David Davis

“Sources” sat that the Police “believe” that “an Al Quaeda cell” was “days away from“…doing something a bit down south from this type writer here. Better install a few weaponised dustbins inside the Trafford, to be on the safe side….

Maybe they were, maybe they weren’t. Who now can tell? 

I don’t watch the broadcast MSM “news” any more, finding it as I do rather sensationalised and unhelpful in discerning the truth of matters. But I expect this is all over it already. Gordon Brown and our MPs are sinking fast and need to be make to look big again, with some security-theatre: why? Because everybody slumped in front of their Idiots’ Lanterns has already totally forgotten whatever it was Carla Sarkozy and Michelle Obama were wearing at G20 – and how it was designed by Sarah Hobbsbawm on an inspiratory revelation from the Dear Leader Himself. (Her reward was to get to borrow a £9,000 bra, and only have to pay 10% of the price…)

._._._._.

Let us now play an informal little war game together:

Let’s pretend that there actually are (for there may be some) dudes out there, inflamed by certain pre-Rennaissance and amoral-barbarian beliefs, egged on by a number of “deeply-respected” mountebanks and pisstaking mysogynisticoNazi scumbags who stand to gain a lot out of the result, that the West is comprised of sub-human turds who have turned our faces from God, deliberately underdress their women and other sex-slaves, and thus surely deserve to die – as must be obvious to everyone.

Now are these dudes doing what they allegedly have just been doing  _because_  we have decided to assault the buggers in faraway countries who put them up to it? This is predicated upon the notion that the vast majority of adherents to these ideas want nothing at all to do with blood and gore and explosions – which is patently clear although none of them seem to want to come out and say so….

Or, would the said dude-droids be doing it anyway regardless,  _because_ certain “belief-systems” explicitly exhort that this is the right thing to do, and it’s fun to kill people you don’t know in very large numbers? I incline to the latter.

Thus, the “War on Terror” (a conflation of ideas substantively empty of meaning as we all agree) has been talked up as an excuse by the new ruling Enemy Class of the West, to introduce control of individuals’ lives more typical of those Police States which the detonating-buggers come from, than of a Classical liberal civilisation.

Look now. We here always, always get blown up by successive historical swarms of evil fat-heads, not because of what we have done to the afforesaid fat-heads at sometime or other, but  _because_ they are innately evil (“they just are”, as a British teenager would harrumph, inarticulately unable to acticulate exactly why) and can’t stand to be outshone by real civilisations: it happens to us all the time. It’s an occupational hazard of being right.

The fat-heads’ ultimate unimportance and actual destructiveness and negative value is threatening to them, for they would if made to operate as normal humans merely fade away and become sad meths-drinkers and hobos: deep down, in what passes for their hearts, they know fully that it is as I say. They are those who would be helped to a dignified death by concerned old ladies and retired, heavily-decorated wing-commanders.

We must just stop being so wimpish and accept the fact that if we want to be “The City Upon a Hill”, we shall continue to be attacked by those who still inhabit the cesspools.

Nightjack is shutting shop, but there’s still lots to say


David Davis

There are, some say, 130 million blogs. I have no idea, and it doesn’t matter really, for 129,900,000 are read by one person a day, and you can guess who. I don’t even bother with “David Davis” and “Ordure! Ordure!” – not yet anyway, for I write nothing there at this time, being busy enough with this one. (We do try to think about what to write, you know.)

But via The Landed Underclass, our primary eyes and ears in the foremast director position, for he spends much time there, and from whom we learned first I think about Nightjack. Nightjack states that he now has said everything he thinks he ought to, and has other plans, such as a book which is fair enough – he does have a job to hold down too.

Says Nightjack:-

It is still fun but  I have now written  down everything that I think is worth me writing. In some areas I am conscious that I am starting to repeat myself.  If I keep on going I believe that I will end up spending the next year or so attack blogging the government rather than blogging about policing.  I don’t want to be all about that. There are plenty of other people doing that better already.

But, attack-blogging the government will provide everyone who wants to, and more besides, with more than enough material, almost for ever….sadly. In an ideal world, none of us liberal blggers would need to do what we do: we could become rich instead by selling things people want to buy, such as electricity, burgers deep-fried in goose-fat, tungsten, cars, steel, space-rockets, cigarettes, and sex. Furthermore, if we do not attack-blog the government, stridently, enthusiastically and with relentless ferocity, then it and lookers-on will start to think that it is winning, and we are losing heart.

Governments know, with perfect clarity, what they are doing, and they are doing it all, without exception, on purpose. They are composed of GramscoFabiaNazis, which is the sort of person who wants to be a GoverNazi – and that’s it, just it.  And thus everything is pre-planned and pre-agreed by them, from the first places where they meet each other: for these are astonishingly bright people we are up against, and not only that, but they have been to the finest education establishments you can buy, and have met each other and have been Eagletonized, and vulcanised, to (jack)boot (sorry.).  

For example, there was no “mistake” or “oversight”, or “error”, on the part of the husband of “Jacqui” “Smith”, a “Bair Babe”,  in claiming for whatever passed as “pornography”: it was claimed for deliberately, to check if it would get through, so that other MPs would know thereafter that they could do it also, and that this sort of expense would pass. There is no other reason – as the bugger is the Home Secretary, and his wife the “Bair Babe” sits in Parliament and does his wishes, this must have been the plan.

Nightjack’s loss to us in The Line is sad: his perspective as a proper Serving Police Officer was useful and illuminating, but his ceasing to write will not be a disaster. Others will come. But if you have any favourite Nightjack posts, I guess you’d better copy-paste them down to your Type Writing Machine as soon as you can, for as he says, his blog will self-destruct in not many days, as they do.

Electronic search terms;

Babes; Blair; parliament; guy fawkes; police; right to roam; farming; common fisheries policy; silver iodide; rain; acid; road access; education;

Big Hollywood » Blog Archive » PBS’ Dickens Adaptation Politicizes, Vulgarizes Classic Novel


 

The latest PBS adaptation  of Charles Dickens’s classic novel Oliver Twist demonstrates the urgent need for reform of the taxpayer-supported broadcasting service–or an end to taxpayer funding for it.

The temptation to “improve” on classic works of culture seems all but irresistible, especially to the political radicals and social transformers who infest public broadcasting organizations in the United States and Europe. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting has long been known as a very aggressive practitioner of efforts at political and social transformation through its partially taxpayer-funded Public Broadcasting System (PBS) for television and its National Public Radio (NPR) network.

Of course, supporters of public broadcasting dismiss the claims of political bias, despite the abundance of evidence. Certainly the networks produce some good things that don’t seem to have as strong a transformative agenda, but on the whole the bias is strong. And the programming providers continue on their merry way, bolstered by taxpayer dollars.

For example, as the PBS series Masterpiece Classic (formerly Masterpiece Theater, one of the good things the network has done over the years) begins a new presentation this week–an adaptation of Charles Dickens’s classic novel Little Dorrit, viewers may well hope that the producers will be somewhat more faithful to the things that have kept people reading the book over the past century and a half, and not “improve” it as they did with their recent two-part presentation of Dickens’s Oliver Twist.

Unlike the network’s superb 2005 adaptation of Dickens’s Bleak House, the producers of the Oliver Twist adaptation (in concert with the UK-government-controlled British Broadcasting Corporation) have decided to update the classic novel to conform to current political shibboleths.

The visual presentation is quite effective, wisely following the lead of the Bleak House adaptation (and the 2005 theatrical film version of Pride and Prejudice and Roman Polanski’s 2005 film version of Oliver Twist) in employing a gritty, cluttered look that vividly evokes the brilliant liveliness of Dickens’s novels. In the Masterpiece Classics version of Oliver Twist the dirty streets of lower-class London are striking, crime ring leader Fagin’s wretched den of thieves is awful in its squalor, and the home of Oliver’s wealthy would-be benefactors is a refreshing contrast while looking plausibly lived-in.

The story and characterizations, unfortunately, don’t match the faithful and evocative visuals. One of the first and most jarring notes is the appearance of actress Sophie Okonedo as Nancy, Oliver’s protector in Fagin’s den of thieves. Okonedo was born of a Jewish mother and black father and looks very African in descent.

Now, it’s just plausible that Twist’s villain, the violent and vulgar Bill Sykes, would have an African-English girlfriend, but there’s not a hint of that in Dickens’s novel. Clearly the producers are imposing an ideal of a colorblind society on a story where it adds nothing, is unnecessary, and is quite a distraction for those who know the original novel. The character, however, is as complex and benevolent as in the original story, which is all to the good.

Thus, while being somewhat distracting, the transformation of Nancy into a black woman does no major damage to the story. Other changes, however, do, and some are really contemptible, all pushing in the same direction.

Among the less offensive changes are the transformation of wealthy benefactor Rose into a Victorian female version of Sam Spade, aided by her housekeeper, Mrs. Bedwin, in forays into the mean streets of London in search of Oliver. Clearly this is an attempt by the producers to create another heroic female figure in the story, and the presentation of Mr. Brownlow, another benefactor, as impatient and too willing to believe Oliver a thief makes the point that much more obvious: Men bad, women good.

Fagin, brilliantly portrayed by Timothy Spall, is a very obviously bad sort, although the producers seem intent on suggesting that what has driven him to crime is anti-Semitism, more than any choice of his own. They do, however, largely present him in his full, evil selfishness, lest the viewer fail to recognize the immense, consistent horribleness of the male sex.

The worst of the lot, of course, is Bill Sykes, brilliantly portrayed by Tom Hardy (Band of Brothers). His Sykes is a good deal less powerful and formidable than the character embodied by Oliver Reed’s excellent performance in the theatrical musical film version, Oliver!, but he’s a thoroughly rotten villain, as in the original novel.

Even here, though, the producers introduce elements that water down the power of the original story. The characterization of Sykes continually introduces a strong element of anxiety in the character, suggesting a more modern point of view in which, as with Fagin, people are driven to crime by poverty. This reaches a ridiculous peak when Sykes deliberately hangs himself in one of the film’s climactic moments.

In the Dickens original, of course, Sykes is accidentally hanged, not a deliberate suicide. Making his end a suicide destroys the original story’s presentation of a sense of cosmic justice, replacing it with a bathetic stab at evoking a measure of sympathy for a human devil.

Most revolting of all, however, is the producers’ addition of a new element to Fagin’s trial near the end of the story. In the original novel, Fagin is tried for his crimes and sentenced to death. It’s clearly the only sensible resolution to Fagin’s story, and even if we feel some sympathy for him and recognize that the conditions of his life have been far from ideal, it’s clear that his activities have earned him the rope according to the laws of the time.

The producers, however, are intent on blaming society for Fagin’s crimes, and they make this repugnant premise explicit in the trial scene. The judge looks at Fagin and asks him if he would like to obtain mercy. Fagin naturally says yes. The judge then tells Fagin to get down on his knees and ask Jesus Christ for mercy and acknowledge Christ as savior of mankind.

I should hope it needless to say that this is both historically absurd and an entirely false addition to Dickens’s story, and one which thoroughly undermines the author’s intelligent and nuanced view of social conditions and personal responsibility. Dickens was a powerful advocate of social reform while never denying that people should and indeed must be held responsible for their choices.

Thus the producers cap the adaptation with a slam against Christianity and a presentation of the standard leftist line that Christians are eager to impose their religious beliefs by force. This takes the adaptation explicitly away from everything Dickens’s novel was about and transforms it into a dreary purveyor of modern-day political shibboleths.

Unlike commercial television and radio, public broadcasting is notoriously insensitive to the needs of audiences beyond the upper-middle- and upper-class liberals whose political and economic power controls their purse strings. As this recent travesty of Oliver Twist vividly demonstrates, it’s high time the taxpayers rose up and made public television more responsive to the public and less able to indulge in a long-term scheme of political and social transformation.

–S. T. Karnick

Big Hollywood » Blog Archive » PBS’ Dickens Adaptation Politicizes, Vulgarizes Classic Novel