More on the Persecution of the BNP

More on the Persecution of the BNP
by Sean Gabb
(3rd January 2007)

One of my duties as Director of the Libertarian Alliance is to defend the right to free expression of people whose views I do not share. I do not perform this duty as often or as effectively as I might wish. But I begin the new year with another of my comments on the persecution of the British National Party.

Just before last Christmas, a journalist called Ian Cobain published a series of articles in The Guardian newspaper, revealing how he had joined the BNP and been made its Central London Organiser. In this capacity, he got hold of the Party’s membership list. His articles were essentially a listing of names of middle class members. Further news reports in the same newspaper and in others detailed the actual and suggested persecution of these members.

The most widely discussed member has been Simone Clarke, a leading dancer at the English National Ballet. She was quoted by Mr Cobain as saying that immigration “has really got out of hand”. The ENB is a body funded by the taxpayers, and it has a duty under the Race Relations Act 2000 to “promote good race relations”. The funding body, Arts Council England, insists that funded “organisations have to make sure that they promote cultural diversity as a clear and central part of all their work”.

Not surprisingly, there have been calls for her to be sacked. Lee Jasper, Equalities Director for the Mayor of London and Chairman of the National Assembly Against Racism, said:

The ENB must seriously consider whether having such a vociferous member of an avowedly racist party in such a prominent role is compatible with the ethics of its organisation. I seriously doubt that it is and that should lead to her position being immediately reviewed. I think she should be sacked.

He called on funders and David Lammy, the Arts Minister, to intervene.

Inayat Bunglawala, of the Muslim Council of Britain, said people had a right to their private political views but added:

This will taint the ENB in the eyes of many minority communities. Questions need to be asked about how someone in that position can be allowed to abuse that position to promote the BNP.”

I could move to my analysis of the agenda behind Mr Cobain’s articles. But I cannot resist a brief digression on Mr Bunglawala. He is treated in the coverage of this story as if he were a political moderate, righteously shocked at the “political extremism” of the BNP. In fact, his own opinions appear quite as alarming as anything alleged against the BNP.

Take his statement that people have a right to their private political views. That may be the case in some benevolent oriental despotism. In England, it has long been accepted that we have a right to express our political views in public. Such, at least, has always been my understanding.

Turning to his comments on the ENB, it is worth asking what possible further taint he thinks the organisation can receive through its association with Miss Clarke. He appears to believe that western classical music is a sinful indulgence, and that listening to it is inconsistent with Islam. He makes a point of rejecting the more purist Islamic position, that

Listening to music and singing is a sin and cause for the sickening and weakening of the heart. The majority of the scholars of the Salaf are unanimous that listening to music and singing and using musical instruments is Haram (prohibited).

He says instead that:

We accept music but would frown on disco-going, or concerts where alcohol is served or where there is unrestricted mixing of the sexes. That would be opposed by Islamic scholars.

But where is the difference? While in Bratislava last month, I attended a performance of La Traviata. The plot centres on the relationship between an unmarried man and a high class prostitute. There was shameless mingling of the sexes in the audience. There was alcohol served in the intervals. During Act 2, Scene 2, the ballerinas showed their legs most immodestly and contorted their bodies in ways that might have given Mr Bungawala a seizure.

He says he accepts music. Has he ever seen The Rite of Spring? Is he aware of the double orgasm portrayed in the Overture to Don Giovanni? Does he know the score of Tristan und Isolde? Would he recommend Moslems to attend any of these works? So long as she refrains from lecturing the audience between pirouettes, does it add to the infamy of a performance if Miss Clarke holds opinions of which he disapproves?

But enough of Mr Bunglawala. I turn to the main agenda.

We have in this country a ruling class committed to political, economic and social globalisation. While some parts of this are consistent with libertarianism, others are not. Much of the consequent association of peoples takes place in a market systematically rigged by taxes and regulations. Much is nakedly coerced through equal opportunity laws and censorship. But whatever libertarians might think of what is going on, large and increasing numbers of people dislike it all.

Since both main political parties are agreed, opponents have a choice between not voting at all and voting for one of the smaller parties. Many are voting for the BNP. There is a chance that many who do not vote will also vote BNP once it can prove that it is a credible political force. Therefore, the BNP must be destroyed.

The gentler forms of destruction involve lies. Undoubtedly, the BNP grew out of a national socialist movement. But it does not appear now to be a national socialist organisation. So far as I can tell from its website, the BNP believes in a mixed economy welfare state, with some regard for traditional civil liberties. It also believes that the alleged benefits of this should be largely reserved for English-speaking white people. This is not something that I find particularly attractive. Nor however is it the same as wanting a totalitarian police state plus gas chambers.

Since lying about the BNP does not work very well in the age of the Internet, the gentler forms of destruction are being supplemented by stronger. Its leader has just been acquitted after a trial for speech crimes that did not exist when I was a boy. Its known members are losing their jobs in public bodies up and down the country. It has trouble getting its material printed. Banks are being persuaded to close its accounts. The legal machinery is in place to deny it access to the ballot in elections.

Mr Cobain’s articles must be seen as part of this attempted destruction of a political party. Let it become known that middle class supporters will be named and have their careers destroyed, and party membership will not proceed far beyond the working classes. Let it be made effectively impossible for any middle class person to stand as a BNP candidate, and the only candidates will be criminals and fools, who can then be held up as a reason not to vote BNP.

Much of this would be happening if there were a Conservative Government. But the intensity of the persecution faced by the BNP is peculiar to Labour. There has been a strain of antinomianism in our politics since 1997 not seen in centuries. From Tony Blair down, the Ministers believe passionately that they can and therefore must turn England into some kind of multicultural love feast. Their vision of a transformed England is not very clear. But, as with an impressionist painting, vagueness of detail is compensated by vividness of colour.

These people cannot imagine that anyone of good will could fail to believe as they do. Therefore, all opposition is evil, and may rightly be put down without regard for traditional norms of right and justice and common decency. See, as an example of this, how Peter Hain defends as a Minister police state measures that he used to condemn when used by the South African Government. To the Saints of New Labour, all things are lawful.

It helps that most of these people used to be Marxists. They no longer seem to believe in the positive doctrines of Marxism, but they retain its assumption that the traditional norms are mere “bourgeois legality”.

We can, therefore, look forward to much more of this. Sooner or later, our ruling class will shut down all electoral dissent. The only possible opposition will then be on the streets.

Now, I am able to say this from a position of safety. Neither I nor the Libertarian Alliance expect to suffer in any measurable degree from this shutting down of debate. We live in a potemkin democracy, where only limited diversity of opinion is tolerated. But even so, there must be some opposition.

I am fortunate enough to find myself in the licensed opposition. I face no official discrimination that I can see. I am allowed to work in state universities. I am allowed regular appearances in the media. I am not obviously under surveillance. This may be because our ruling class does not regard libertarians as much of a threat. It may be because someone outside the ruling class has to be tolerated, for the sake of keeping up the pretence of liberal democracy. Whatever the reason, we do not operate under any of the disadvantages that the real dissidents of the BNP must take as facts of life.

This imposes a duty on me and my friends to speak up in defence of the dissidents. Unlike the other “rights” organisations, we believe in freedom of speech with no exceptions. We do not enquire into the substance of a person’s views before defending his right to express them.

We denounce the persecution of the BNP. Though I do not expect them to pay any attention, I call on Liberty and the Conservative Party to do likewise.

13 responses to “More on the Persecution of the BNP

  1. Pingback: M Rebman » Blog Archive » - Libertarian Alliance: Blog

  2. Quite so Dr Gabb.

    As for those who say “it is only the B.N.P. – why should we care about those swine?”. what is done to B.N.P. members can be done to other people.

    After all even opposition to British membership of the European Union is sometimes described as “xenophobia” – why should “xenophobic” people be allowed to work for the government, or for organizations who bid for govenment grants, or have bank accounts with institutions that depend on the Bank of England (and so on and so on).

  3. >So far as I can tell from its website, the BNP believes in a mixed economy welfare state, with some regard for traditional civil liberties. It also believes that the alleged benefits of this should be largely reserved for English-speaking white people.

    Well, a welfare state ‘restricted’ to a national group sounds exactly like nationalism and socialism put together. And leftists always claim to support civil liberties. It is pollitically correct to do so.

    >Whatever the reason, we[libertarians] do not operate under any of the disadvantages that the real dissidents of the BNP must take as facts of life.

    The reason the current establishmente is so strongly opposed to the BNP is that forces of the same sign REPEL each other. In a word, the establishment agrees 100% with the platform of the BNP but would never admit it!

    In reality there’s no such thing as inter-national socialism. Socialism is simply the most savage form of statism and statism is, by definition, a local phenomenon. Socialism in only possible under the dictatorship of a ‘nation-state’.

    So, the ‘problem’ with the BNP is that they are directly competing with the nazi party of Mr. Blair!

  4. Nice Comments peeps: In the end it’s all to do with power and control.
    After being in the wilderness for nearly 20 years, the NuLabour of 1997 is keen to make up for lost time!
    Their proposals in dealing with partys they don’t like is only the thin end of the wedge, and given another election mandate in a few years time could entail much greater repression of personal freedom.
    Watch out, they are in for the long haul…at all costs.

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    Порно грузинских девушек Хорошие сайты с порнухой

  6. Wow, marvelous weblog structure! How lengthy have you ever been running a blog for?
    you make blogging look easy. The total glance of your site is magnificent, let alone the
    content material!

  7. Important point the BNP do not speak for the English People, they have
    no manadate to do so, firstly their rediclous proposals to give £15,000 to
    every miggrant to leave england would bankrupt the state. There will never
    be a BNP government in England, such a debate is not worthy of pen!

  8. The other day, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iPad and tested
    to see if it can survive a thirty foot drop, just
    so she can be a youtube sensation. My apple ipad is now destroyed
    and she has 83 views. I know this is entirely
    off topic but I had to share it with someone!

  9. Mr Harry Pricel

    Lucky you, she sounds an interesting girl, conducting experiments for the
    benefit of makind, thanks for sharing. 83 she has done well.

  10. Mr Justin P Fox.

    Great, she done everyone a favour, I’ll make sure I don’t drop mine from
    30ft now. Thank her so much she’s done everyone a favour.

  11. Jenny Doreen Pipkin

    Well let immigration continie, we are all ready seeing benefits cuts, proposed
    cuts to wealthy pensioners this will just go on and on until there is nothing
    left, when the pensions stop in 2018, someone might wish they had been
    control over immigration policy.

  12. Reblogged this on oogenhand and commented:
    People with unwanted views get sacked. Sacked people need welfare.