Author Archives: Robert Henderson

What  to do if you are accused of inciting racial hatred

Robert Henderson

There is a growing enthusiasm by the authorities in Britain  to  prosecute people who are judged to have  broken the law by  being  racist in speech or writing.   This enthusiasm is fuelled by  the adoption of political correctness as the elite ideology of the day.   Anyone in a position of power and influence is forced on pain of being cast from  such circles to at least pay lip service to the creed and the fear of being called racist has those without power or influence in a vice-like grip as they see people who have been accused of racism having  their lives turned upside down by  the media engaging in hate campaigns against them,  their jobs taken from  them and, in an increasing number of cases,  criminal records put upon them for simply saying what they think.

The police have become frantically keen on showing their politically correct credentials. Recently the  Home Secretary  Amber Rudd  found the police recording a complaint of racism  against her after she made a speech dealing with immigrants as a  “non-crime hate incident, a category without any statutory basis  that the police have invented.  In cases such as this the police cease to act as police and become political commissars.

The “non-crime hate incident”  will be logged on a police computer,  quite possibly the  central computer the  police have. It is unlikely to affect the likes of Rudd but anyone without power or influence could well find the police bringing such a record into play  if they end up, for whatever reason,   being questioned by the police. Even if it never happens it will hang heavy in the minds of the person to whom such a record  refers because  they  will have become “a person known to the police” despite  ever having been charged with an offence.  It might well come up on a criminal records check undertaken because of the nature of a job someone is applying for. Even if that never happens to you imagine  how your  employer  or your family  might  react if  becomes public knowledge in some other way such as a newspaper report    that  you are  a person deemed  to have been the perpetrator of a “hate non-crime incident”.

The police are rather less enthusiastic about one class of complaint of racism. Any complaint of a “non-crime hate incident ” to the police which falls outside what the politically correct deem to be a worthy case – basically any complaint involving racial incitement against whites –  will not be recorded. I have in the past tried out the police’s willingness to record such complaints, for example, I made a complaint of racial incitement against Greg Dyke when he was Chairman of the BBC following  his “hideously white” description of the Corporation.  The police refused to record the complaint let alone investigate it.

The great advantage you have

All that will seem daunting to anyone  accused of racism which reaches the police . Do not despair. People accused of this type of offence has one great advantage : those with power and influence in the UK  have a dread of the issue of free expression  being the subject of public debate in the courts. This is so for two reasons. First,  they know that prosecuting people for simply saying something  goes against the idea of a free society, something which the British elite  invariably  claim to believe in in the abstract.   Second,  the free speech that is being  suppressed is that which goes against  the politically correct version of what is permissible. The politically correct know in their heart of hearts that  political incorrectness is the natural order of things and that only by censoring  can the pretence that political correctness reflects reality  be maintained.

As a consequence  of these fears  the police and those in the  justice system do everything possible to persuade those charged with such offences to plead guilty.  This was graphically shown in the case of  Emma West who maintained her innocence for many months even though initially she was held on remand in the highest security women’s prison in the UK .  Her crime? To make  what was really no more than a public  protest about  the consequences of mass immigration. Eventually, she pleaded guilty to lesser charges after the stress got to her, not least the fear that  her young son would be taken from her.  The extraordinary efforts to  made to get  the woman to change her plea strongly suggests  that had she stuck by her original Not Guilty plea there was  a very good chance the case would never have come to court.

The lesson of all this is always get on the front foot if you are threatened  by those with power and influence.  Show that you are afraid and intimidated and the powers-that-be will simply ride all over you.  Let those who are harrying you know that you are coming out fighting. That is not only your best chance of neutralising the accusation of racism it is probably your only chance.  Try googling  cases of  people accused of pc “crimes” who tamely pleaded guilty. Despite assiduous researching  I cannot find one  case which ended  with a person pleading guilty  being left in their original position, either in their work  or  socially.  At best,  the  common outcome  is for people   to lose their job  and to find getting another one very difficult; at worst they can  end up in prison.  Pleading guilty to such charges is never a soft option.

Subject access requests

If the complaint which has led to criminal charges being brought  has been made by someone representing an organisation rather than just acting as an individual you may be able to get useful information  from your accusers  by using the Data Protection Act  to make a subject access request . This places the data holder (the organisation to whom you are directing the subject access request)  under a legal obligation to supply the person making the request  with copies of any information they hold about them.

It is also worthwhile to put in a subject access request to other organisations, for example

  1. the police force which is dealing with the complaint against you.
  2. Any media organisation such as a the BBC or a national newspaper if it has shown an interest in your case.

Such organisations  may  hold  data which will be at embarrassing at best  and at worst damaging to their accusation against you. For example, there may be data showing that there were  arguments against  making a complaint  by some members of  the organisation making or supporting the complaint;  details of the surveillance of you before any alleged crime has been acted upon by the police or attempts to entrap you which depending on circumstances could be illegal.

There is an exemption in the Act for legal  documents and information held for journalistic purposes, but  often  the recipient of a subject access request will have data which is not covered by the exceptions.

Apart from possibly gaining useful information, the effect of making a subject access request will be  to reinforce  the fact that  you are coming out  fighting for even if no useful  data is forthcoming  the sending of a subject access request will signal that you mean business.

How do you do make a subject access request?  Use the wording   below for the request, enclose £10 for the fee  and ask for the data they hold in paper form. The reason for asking for the material in paper form is that often paper documents have manuscript notes written on them.  These may carry important information.

Dear Sirs,

I am making a subject access request to the  Campaign Against Anti-Semitism  under section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA).  This data will include any qualifying information held on any type of media.

Please send to me copies of any data relating to me which your organisation holds within the 40 calendar days allowed by  the Act.

I want any qualifying  information you hold to be supplied to me  in paper form.

A cheque for £10 is enclosed to pay the fee.

Yours faithfully,

———————————————————————————————————————————

If the matter does go a trial

Base your defence on free expression  and the fact that political correctness requires the denial of  the reality  of  homo sapiens’  biology  and evolved social nature.

For free expression  make  these arguments:

  1. When it comes to censorship there is a simple binary choice: there is either free expression or a range of permitted opinion which may be altered at any time.  In present day  Britain there is only  a range of permitted opinion, the scope of which narrowing by the day.
  2. Free expression is an integral part of democracy. If people are not allowed to put forward their views there is no democracy.
  3. By definition any totalitarian ideology is incompatible with democracy because it excludes any viewpoint apart from its own.

Political correctness is a totalitarian ideology. It  both potentially covers every aspect of life because the non-discrimination test can be applied to any aspect of  life and   insists that the only correct and permissible view  of anything  where political correctness applies is the politically correct view.  The defining of antisemitism , especially in its present very broad  sense, is part of political correctness.

  1. Many in the West who want to censor also wish to also pretend  quite absurdly that they support free expression. It is important to  ensure that  their hypocrisy is made clear at every opportunity . The notes below provide a potent way of driving  those adopting this position into a corner.
  2. For a detailed examination of the issue of free expression see Free Expression or a range of permitted opinion . Use the details in that essay   to give chapter and verse on the  vast constraints on free expression in England today.  Simply  reciting in court   the long list   of ways in which free speech is discouraged today  should have the effect of knocking on the head any claim that free speech exists.

For the denial of  the reality  of  homo sapiens’  biology  and evolved social nature use these arguments:

Humans are social animals. Social animals only become social (what biologists call the development of sociality)  by setting limits to those within their group. This is because sociality can only develop where there is trust  and trust comes from triggers ranging from scent and chemical triggers  to, in the case of humans, a recognition of those who belong to a group through a mixture of biology –  basically does this person look like me? –   and acquired knowledge that an individual belongs to the  group through their cultural behaviour, for example, speaking the same language or having the same accent. That is the basis of group or tribal  belonging .  Tribal feeling is not  an optional extra. It is an essential  evolved behaviour which protects the group.

Political correctness denies  that humans have  an evolved social nature and insists against all the evidence that everything is down to cultural imprinting.  When presented with this argument simply point out  (1) that  wherever a society is racially/culturally  mixed there is always serious friction and (2) that  the universality  of racial and ethnic tension  in mixed societies can only be plausibly explained  by tribal feeling being innate .

Dealing with accusations of racism generally

Always  get those accusing you of racism to define the word. This will simply stump most people because they are rarely if ever called upon to explain what is meant by racism. That is particularly true of the politically correct who rely on their control of the positions of power and influence, including the media,  to censor out challenges to political correctness.  That this is done and accepted as legitimate by the politically correct tells us one thing: at some level they realise, as the religious do, that their beliefs cannot stand up to argument.

Asking for a definition of what is meant by racism is a tool which can be used to fluster and unsettle everyone involved in bringing and prosecuting a case against you. If  they are unable give a satisfactory definition  you are halfway to winning the case.  If they give a definition to which you can answer “I do not meet that definition” so much the better. Indeed, there is a good chance that asked for a definition of racism people are  likely to say  something along the lines of “Well, it  means you think some people are inferior to you because of their colour”. To that you can say, no, that does not  apply to me. I merely, like all human beings, naturally seek the company of those who resemble me because of my evolved nature.

The person to whom the question of a definition has been addressed  may well be unable to  meaningfully expand on their original offering.  If they do it will probably be by saying something like “It’s discriminating against people”.  This allows the defence to then bring out the fact that all humans have to discriminate all the time between people because  we have to make choices.

That is just a few  examples of how even in a court the prosecution and their witnesses can be exposed as having no firm grasp of what they mean by racism and that in turn will make it difficult in principle to say whether what you are accused of inciting actually  exists.

The effect of this type of defence is to keep the prosecution on the  back foot.

The special case of  Antisemitism

These  contrary arguments  will cover most of the  accusations of anti-Semitism:

  1. It is not anti-Semitic to apply the same test to Jews as should rationally be applied to any minority group, namely, is the group or  members of the group attempting to gain an advantage for their group which is achieved at the cost of disadvantaging the rest of the society  in which they live. That is simply rational self-preservation by the majority population.  The most potent  example of  unacceptable behaviour by a minority group  is  one which advocates free immigration to the country in which the group lives and whose members are  either immigrants themselves or  the descendants of immigrants.
  2. It is not anti-Semitic to be concerned if there are  a disproportionately large  number of Jews in positions of power and influence such as politics and the mainstream media.   The prime example of this is the Jewish lobby in the USA. Such positions  are gained most commonly not because the best person gets the job but because those occupying them are either born into a privileged position or the position is an appointment made  by patronage.  For example, a significant percentage of  those  employed in the media have relations who worked in the media before them.
  3. It is not anti-Semitic to refuse to treat the Holocaust as an event which is uniquely abominable and consequently something that must be placed before the world to be condemned ceaselessly. It is now 71 years since the ending of the Second World War . Even the youngest of the surviving   death camp survivors will be old.  Most will be dead or in their eighties and nineties.  Time has reduced to the Holocaust to  what everything  eventually becomes,  an historical event which can be viewed objectively.
  4. It is not anti-Semitic to point out that huge numbers of  non-Jewish  people  died in the Camps and that the  frequent portrayal of the mass killings as an essentially  Jewish event is wrong. That is not to deny  that  huge numbers of Jews died or to belittle their  suffering.  Rather, it is to provide an accurate account of what the death camps were  and to rebalance the emotional response to what occurred.
  5. It is not anti-Semitic to treat the six million figure for Jews  killed as uncertain.  That does not mean six  million did not die. Indeed, many more may well  have done so.  What matters here is that the  six  million figure is not an historical fact.   To give just a couple  of  examples of the difficulty in calculating the numbers  killed. Estimates of  the number of Jews in Europe before  1933 run into two primary problems: the definition of who is a Jew  (which covers a wide span of circumstances) and  the reliability  and lack of uniformity of methodology  of  census  records  compiled in different jurisdictions. Piled on top of that is the post-Holocaust dispersal of  European Jews outside of Europe which makes  comparison of the  pre-1933 Jewish  European population  with the post-1945 population of Jews in Europe very difficult even if the definition of who is Jew is ignored.
  6. It is not anti-Semitic to view the modern state of Israel as illegitimate in foundation and support for it to be against Western interests because it puts the West perpetually at odds with the Arab world in particular and the Muslim world in  general.

How to deal with the police

Do not be aggressive to or try to ingratiate yourself with the police. Be formally polite but reserved. Make it clear by your behaviour that you are not to be intimidated. I realise that is difficult for people who have no experience of the police but adopting  a  reserved manner will go a long way to achieving this. Always have at the front of your mind that  the police and the justice system are not geared up to deal with people who will not plead guilty to charges relating to racism.

If  you have been  arrested get your lawyer to  ask the police to justify the arrest – they must have reasonable grounds for suspecting that you have committed a crime or intend to commit a crime.

Always remain silent until you have  a lawyer present.

The police must caution you if they  are attempting to get evidence from you about a crime that you have committed or  are intending to commit  or are otherwise involved with, for example, fencing stolen goods.

If you have been cautioned without being arrested  you  must be told that you are free to leave at any time.

Be aware that if you accept the offer of a formal police caution (this can be with or without conditions) to avoid going to trial that  can be as damaging as having a criminal  record particularly if you work  in jobs requiring a criminal records check.  These cautions have nothing to do with the caution previously described

Be aware  that if you  accept an offer to plead guilty to a lesser charge  in the long run this can be as damaging to your life as fighting a more serious charge.

For my detailed advice on dealing with the police see https://englandcalling.wordpress.com/what-to-do-if-you-become-involved-with-the-criminal-law/

 

 

 

 

2016 and the future

Robert Henderson

What has changed over the past year?

The grip of the Western globalists is slipping.   They do not   realise it yet but their day is  almost done. Their ramshackle ideology,   a toxic blend of open borders politically correct internationalism  and what is crony capitalism but called by  those with a vested interest in it neo-liberal or laissez faire  economics , has wrought as it was certain to do,  rage and increasingly despair amongst  the majority of electors in Western states who are increasingly turning to  politicians that at least have some grasp of what is necessary to preserve  the viability of Western nation states.

The most  optimistic possibility for the West  is that  parties which do have some real attachment to what the great mass of people seek will be both elected and when in office carry through their pre-election promises.  But this is far from certain. It does not follow that what will replace globalism will be a politics which reflects the wants and needs of Western voters because the existing elites may drop all pretence of being anything other than an authoritarian clique and go in for wholehearted suppression of any dissent.  There are already signs that  this might happen with  the  growing willingness  amongst Western  elites  to  censor  political ideas, potent examples of which have been the  recent conviction of Gert Wilders in Holland for inciting racial hatred by saying there should be fewer Moroccans in  Holland , while in the UK  the  Prime Minister Theresa May has just sanctioned the putting into law of a definition of anti-Semitism so broad that any criticism Jews or Israel could be interpreted as anti-Semitic. Much will depend on how Donald Trump’s presidency develops.

In Britain the  EU referendum  has dominated everything both before and after the vote to leave in the political year .The anti-democratic mind-set of those who wanted to remain in the EU has been nakedly shown by colossal attempts to  sabotage the result of the referendum through legal  and political action and an incessant bleat about how they want a soft Brexit not a hard Brexit when only  Brexit  exists.

Something which the government calls Brexit will  eventually emerge,  but it could easily  be  a beast which is  directly at odds with what the British people voted on when they went to the polls on 23rd June, namely, for a clean break with the EU.  If this government, or conceivably its successor, concludes  a deal which stitches the UK back into the EU with  such things as free movement of EU citizens into the UK, the UK paying for the “privilege” of remaining in the Single Market and the UK being subject to the European Court of Justice, there  is surely a serious risk of political violence. But even if that  is  avoided British politics would be seriously curdled by such a betrayal.

The other  pressing political  need  is  for an  English parliament and government  to balance the devolution of powers to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. A procedure to have only  MPs sitting for  English seats  voting on English only legislation  (English votes for English laws  or EVEL for short)  began a trial in 2015,  but  it  has few teeth because  it is difficult to disentangle what is English only  legislation, not least  because  MPs  for seats outside of England argue  that any Bill dealing solely with English matters has financial implications for the rest of the UK and , consequently, is not an England only Bill. Nor does EVEL allow English MPs to initiate English only legislation. Most importantly  England , unlike Scotland,  Wales and Northern Ireland, is left without any national political representatives   to concentrate on purely English domestic matters.

The House of Lords review of its first year  in operation makes EVEL’s  limitations clear:

The EVEL procedures introduced by the Government address, to some extent, the West Lothian Question. They provide a double-veto, meaning that legislationor provisions in bills affecting only England (or in some cases, England and Wales, or England and Wales and Northern Ireland), can only be passed by the House of Commons with the support of both a majority of MPs overall, and of MPs from the nations directly affected by the legislation.

Yet English MPs’ ability to enact and amend legislation does not mirror their capacity, under EVEL, to resist legislative changes. The capacity of English MPs to pursue a distinct legislative agenda for England in respect of matters that are devolved elsewhere does not equate to the broader capacity of devolved legislatures to pursue a distinct agenda on matters that are devolved to them

The most dangerous general global threats are plausibly these in this order

  1. Mass immigration, the permitting of which by elites is the most fundamental treason because unlike an invasion by force, there is no identifiable concrete foreign enemy for the native population to resist. Yet the land is effectively colonised just the same.

2 Uncontrolled technology, which leaves the developed world in particular  but increasingly the  world generally,  very vulnerable  to suddenly being left without vital services if computer systems fail naturally or through cyber attacks.  Judged by the number of reports in the mainstream media the frequency of personal data being hacked and major computer systems  going down, most notably banks, is increasing. This is unsurprising because both state organisations and private business are remorselessly  forcing  customers and  clients to use web-based contact points rather than deal with a human being.  This in itself makes life unpleasant and for older people in particular most difficult.

In the  medium  term –  probably within ten years –  there is the existential  threat  to humans of general purpose robots being able to cause a catastrophic  drop in demand by taking over  so many jobs that demand collapses because huge numbers are rapidly made unemployed.  To that can be added the development of military robots which have the capacity to make autonomous judgements about killing humans.

The  general lack of political concern and a seemingly  universal inability of those with power and influence to see  how robotics and AI systems generally  are rapidly  developing is astonishing. Time and again when the subject of robots and AI systems is raised with such people they will bleat that new jobs will arise due to the new technology, as new technology has always created jobs, and these developments will provide the jobs for humans.

This is sheer “it’ll never replace the horse” ism .  Intelligent robots and AI systems will not only take existing jobs,  they will take most or even all of the new jobs that arise.  This is the potential catastrophe that humans face from robots and AI,  the rapid loss of such  huge amounts of employment  that the economic systems of both the developed and the developing world cannot function  because of the loss of demand,  not the SF style scare stories about intelligent robots making war on humans.  The other thing that  politicians do not seem to understand is that when there are  robots and AI systems sophisticated enough to do most of the jobs humans do, the loss of human jobs will occur at great speed. We can be certain of this for two reasons; our experience with digital technology  is of rapid advances and robots and AI systems will be able to design and build even more advanced  robots and AI systems, probably  very quickly.

Aside from digital technology,  advances in genetic engineering and ever more radical transplant surgery raise the question of what it is to be a human being if full face transplants are now available and the possibility of things such as a head being transplanted in the not too distant future.   We need to ask ourselves what it is to be human.

  1. Islam – serious unrest is found throughout the world wherever there are large numbers of Muslims.
  2. Ever increasing general instability. Contrary to Steven Pinker’s view that the world is becoming more peaceful, if civil conflict is included things are getting worse.  Formal war may be less easy to identify , but ethnic  (and often religious ) based strife plus repression by  rulers  is so widespread outside the West that it is best described as endemic. Globalisation =  destabilisation because by making the world’s economic system more complex , there is simply more to go wrong both economically and socially. Sweeping aside  traditional relationships and practices is a recipe for social discord.  All of economic history tells you one thing above all else: a strong domestic economy is essential for the stability of any country.   The ideology of laissez faire, is like all ideologies,  at odds with  human nature and reality generally and its application inevitably creates huge numbers of losers when applied to places such as China and India.

The most dangerous specific  threats to global peace and stability are:

–              The heightened tension between China and the rest of the Far East (especially Japan) as a consequence of China’s growing territorial ambitions.

–              China’s extraordinary expanding  shadow world empire which consists of both huge investment in the first world and de facto colonial control in the developing world.

–              The growing power of India which threatens Pakistan. An India/Pakistan nuclear exchange is  probably the most likely use of nuclear weapons I the next ten years.

–              The increasing authoritarianism of the EU due to both the natural impetus towards central control and the gross mistake of the Euro.   This will end either in a successful centralisation of  EU power after the UK has left the EU  or the attempt at centralisation will lead to a collapse of the EU.

The Eurofanatics  continue to play  with fire in their attempts to lure border states of Russia into the EU whilst applying seriously damaging sanctions to Russia. It is not in the West’s interest to have a Russia which feels threatened or denied its natural sphere of influence.

–   The ever more successful (at least in the short run) attempt of post-Soviet Russia to re-establish their suzerainty over the old Soviet Empire and Putin’s increasingly martial noises including substantial re-armament.  However, these ambitions will be likely to be mitigated by the plight of the Russian provinces of the Far East where there is unofficial Chinese infiltration of the sparsely populated and natural resource rich land there. Eventually China will wish to capture those territories.

Robert Henderson 17  12 2016

The Thomas Mair Affair

 

Robert Henderson

Thomas Mair has been convicted of the murder of the Labour MP Jo Cox (Batley and Spen) . His sentence was  a whole life tariff which makes it very unlikely  that he will ever be released.

There is something distinctly odd about this case for the reported facts of the case do not seem to hang comfortably together. That Mair killed Cox is clear  and  his ostensible  motive for committing the murder , namely,  that she was a supporter of the remain side in the EU referendum is established, but precious little is else is satisfactorily explained.

Mair  has no revealed previous history of violence , yet his attack on Cox was both sustained and involved not only the shooting of Cox but  multiple stabbings.  For a supposed first time killer Mair showed surprisingly little panic or squeamishness when confronted with the actuality of attacking someone in such a physically  intimate manner.   Instead , he  was remarkably self-possessed during the attack and afterwards according to media reports, so much so that when a man called Rashid Hussain tried to intervene  during the attack on Cox Mair coolly told him “ Move back, otherwise I’m going to stab you.”  He also reloaded his .22 gun twice, shot Cox three times and stabbed her 15 times.  Such determined and  unflustered behaviour is unusual to say the least  for someone who had never done anything like it before.  About the only thing  amateurish  about the attack was the fact that he did not kill the MP quickly.

After the attack, Mair made no meaningful  attempt to flee – he was arrested a mile away from the murder – and he  did not disguise himself either during or after the attack.  A number of people witnessed his attack As the killing was near Mair’s  home the odds against him not being rapidly identified were vanishingly small.

After being arrested  Mair refused to answer questions put to him by the police including questions about his political  leanings. Again he  appeared very self-possessed.  Photographs showing him in a custody booth  could have been taken of a man waiting quietly in a hospital  before he is  called for an examination.

During the act of killing he was reported to have shouted   “Britain first”, “this is for Britain”, “Britain always comes first” and “keep Britain independent”  and when  he made his first appearance in court he  gave his name as Death to Traitors, freedom for Britain”.  There is some dispute about the exact words but the discovery of  a good deal of  hard right literature  in his home makes such statements plausible. Mair’s behaviour to this point suggested  he   wanted to be caught and to use his trial as a platform to complain about the EU and the support MPs such as Cox gave to it.

At his trial everything changed. When called upon to plead he refused to do so and  pleas  of not guilty to the various charges  were entered on his behalf,  as is usual in English courts.  The refusal to plead could be interpreted as Mair  doing what many politically motivated people do when placed on trial, namely,  attempt to remove legitimacy from the court by refusing to acknowledge it.  However, people who take that course generally  make it crystal clear what they are doing. All that Mair offered was silence until he had been convicted for he did not give evidence in his own defence.  What his attitude or strategy was in behaving in this manner is debatable because he can have had no meaningful expectation that he would be found not guilty. Hence, he would have had no reason to fear cross examination because the fact that he killed Cox could not be reasonably said to be in dispute and prosecuting counsel  would have had little to get hold of or theme to develop. Mair would have been able to have his own barrister lead him through whatever Mair wanted to say without  much fear of the prosecution making him look silly in cross examination.

After conviction  Mair  did try to speak before sentence but was refused leave to do so by the judge Mr Justice Wilkie .  The ground for the refusal  was Mair’s failure to give evidence. This struck me as very rum so   I asked an experienced  lawyer whether such a refusal was sound judicial practice and their  answer was an unequivocal no. The refusal  seem  more than a little rather strange not least because little if any mitigation was presented by his barrister.   Nor as we shall see later  was Mair’s  sanity being brought into his defence.

After sentencing there was one last loose end put into the public arena. The police announced that they were  trying to find the person, if any,  who sold Mair the gun with which he shot Cox.   The gun was legally held by someone other than Mair before it was stolen in August 2015. The police  have had more than four months to do that and it is somewhat surprising that they have made no progress to date. It may even be that the police  have only just started looking because the Daily Telegraph on 23 November 2016  stated that “  A major manhunt was underway on Wednesday night for the person who handed the 53-year-old loner the modified bolt-action rifle, which was stolen almost a year before the murder.”

Mair’s silence

What are we to think about Mair’s failure to give evidence? If  the man  was driven by  his politics his natural course would surely have been to make a statement to police detailing his reasons for killing Cox.  Moreover, he was  distinctly bullish about his motives and politics during the killing and at  his first court appearance. He might have been overwhelmed with what he had done and the reality of the circumstances he found himself in.  But his calm demeanour  after arrest  and during  the trial itself  makes this unlikely and in any case he wanted to speak before sentence.

It is possible although  improbable that Mair  decided  he would  refuse  to acknowledge the legitimacy of the court by failing to either plead or give evidence  until he was convicted and then give whatever message he wanted to put before the public . If so he was thwarted by the judge. However, I can find no media report  which either carried details of a protest in court  by Mair at being denied an opportunity to speak   or of his barrister making representations on his behalf that he should be allowed to speak. It is conceivable that the media collectively decided not to carry details of Mair protesting or his barrister arguing that he should be allowed to speak,  but that would surely  be stretching credulity past breaking point.

The only really plausible  explanations for Mair’s  behaviour  would seem to be that  he  is  either mentally ill or that he was intimidated by the authorities into not giving evidence.

Mair’s history of mental illness

One of the most surprising things about the case  is that no psychiatric evidence was offered in court. This was noteworthy for two reasons. The first was the obvious one that Mair’s behaviour and the nature of the crime itself was such as to make  an assessmentof his state of mind  necessary if justice was to be seen to be done. The second was the fact that Mair had not only received psychiatric treatment in  the past for depression  but on the day before the killing he attempted unsuccessfully  to get help for that condition.

There is plenty of opportunity within the justice system for mental illness to be picked up. The police have powers to order a psychiatric examination of  someone they suspect  has a mental illness.   The question of fitness to plead may be raised before arraignment by the prosecution, defence or Judge.  Requesting psychiatric reports after conviction but before  sentencing is  often done. It is important to note that an accused cannot simply declare himself or herself as fit to plead.

Despite all these opportunities  there was no psychiatric evidence presented to the court. Of course if Mair instructed his lawyers not to bring his mental health issues in court as a defence or mitigation they could not do so if he was considered fit to plead which he was.  However, the court itself could have ordered psychiatric reports before sentencing took place and  apparently  did not do so.

But if Mair instructed  to his lawyers  not to use his medical history in the case that would make it  all the more extraordinary  that he failed to  either give evidence or to make a public protest when he was being  denied an opportunity to speak.

Had his  psychiatric history been used at his trial  it is possible it could have made a significant difference to the sentence Mair received . The charge could have been reduced  to manslaughter  if  Mears  was judged to have diminished  responsibility  or lead to a sentence of something less than a whole life term.

What the British state had to gain from Mair’s silence

The alternative explanation that  state  actors have  frightened Mair into keeping quiet  raises the question what did  they have  to gain?   The British elite are very twitchy about having trials in which those charged with breaches of the totalitarian ideology known as political correctness are unwilling to plead  guilty. Moreover, even those who do  plead not guilty very  rarely rest their defence on the right to free expression seeking instead to blame their behaviour on things such as the side effects of  prescription drugs.  Often those who start off with a not  guilty plea will be gradually worn down by officialdom until they agree to plead guilty.   A first rate example of this is the case of  Emma West who, after complaining on a tram about the level of immigration,  was first held in the UK’s nearest to a maximum security prison for women and  after being given bail was then harassed for  months simply because she would not plead guilty. Eventually worn down by the delay and fearing that her young son might be taken away from her, she pleaded guilty to some lesser charges than those originally laid.

The reason why our politically correct powers-that -be  fear a not guilty plea in such cases is they do not want their willingness to suppress free expression attacked or simply made starkly visible in a public forum or for those in the dock to challenge the politically correct view of the world.  Part of the politically correct narrative is that political correctness does not impinge on free expression. This is self-evidently absurd, but it is an essential  plank in the enforcement of political correctness.   For the politically correct  to say  otherwise would be to undermine political correctness  and show it nakedly for what it is, a totalitarian creed which insists the only acceptable view of anything which political correctness touches is the politically correct one. In  principle this means everything  important in human existence because the  concept of discrimination lays every aspect of life open to intrusion by the ideology.  No totalitarian ideology can survive if it is questioned  and political correctness is more vulnerable to intellectual demolition than most because  it is  series of injunctions  which conflict horribly with human nature .

It could have been this elite fear of having political correctness challenged which prompted the judge to refuse Mair leave to address the court.  Mair’s  case was of course very different from those prosecuted for non-pc speech  because of his undisputed crime of murder, but the threat of someone calling those with power who supported the  UK’s membership  traitors, as Mair  most probably would have done judged by his previous public statements during the killing and his first court appearance,  might have seemed a little too close to home for our politicians in particular to view with equanimity.  Treason is a unique crime. Whether it is on the statute book or not, whether it is formally defined one way or another, everyone knows in their heart  of hearts  what it is,  the most  heartrending of emotional blows, namely, betrayal.

There was also  the possibility of elite fear of what one might call  the Anders Breivik effect. If Mair had spoken in court and given a purely political motive for the killing and justified on the grounds that Cox was committing treason this would  almost certainly this would have  created an ambivalent response amongst the public.  The British experience with Irish terrorism are a good example of the tendency where Irish Republicans would often say after a bombing atrocity “I  don’t approve of their methods but….”   There would have been condemnation of the act of killing of course, but along with that in quite a few  minds there would  be a sense that Mair’s political reason for the attack, that he was killing  a traitor, somehow softened  the purely  criminal sharpness  of the deed. There will also be a hard core of those who  were unambiguously glad to see her dead .  A piece of research carried out by Birmingham City and  Nottingham Trent Universities on tweets about the murder of Cox found that  at least 25,000 out of 50,000 tweets studied celebrated her death.

A  silent or at least a Mair not allowed to speak publicly is a perfect  fit to fill  two roles for the  UK’s politically correct elite’s narrative.  First,  he could be  typified as the  type of person the remain side of the referendum said was the typical leave voter, someone who  was ignorant and potentially  violent;  second he  could be pointed at as a  “far right”  terrorist  to balance  against the many Muslim terrorists.  This has already happened : here are a few example  links  one, two, three .

There is also the possibility that  the security services  or the police knew about Mair and did not take any action because they  hoped  that he might do something which would promote the idea  of that those who wanted to leave the EU are  dangerous extreme rightwingers . It is conceivable  although very improbable , that in some way the security services surreptitiously encouraged Mair to  attack  Cox to feed into the general propaganda of the pro-EU side of the  Brexit referendum that portrayed leavers as racist far right know-nothings.  Much more plausibly  the security services  thought that Mair would not do anything more than engage in a public protest or perhaps a bit of criminal damage and they seriously misjudged the situation.  It  would be very damaging  if that was the case and they had been forced to admit such a thing in the witness box.

What is the chance of the British elite behaving badly. Well, consider the case of the Liberal MP Cyril Smith. Smith admitted to the then leader of the Liberal Party David Steel that when involved with the  Cambridge House boys hostel he had both spanked boys with their pants down and conducted what he euphemistically called medical examinations on the boys . Steel took no action and Smith remained within the Party and an MP.

One thing is certain about this case, we have not heard anything like the whole truth about it. We are being asked to believe that a politically motivated killer of his own volition  steadfastly failed to use his capture and trial to send a political message to the public. It makes no sense.

Postscript:

Some further information about the refusal to allow Mair to make an unsworn statement after conviction but before sentence.
The right to make an unsworn sentence before conviction was abolished in England in 1982 (by section 72 of the Criminal Justice Act. However, the Act gave a convicted defendant the right to speak in mitigation, viz:
“2 Abolition of right of accused to make unsworn statement.
(1)Subject to subsections (2) and (3) below, in any criminal proceedings the accused shall not be entitled to make a statement without being sworn, and accordingly, if he gives evidence, he shall do so [F1(subject to sections 55 and 56 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999)] on oath and be liable to cross-examination; but this section shall not affect the right of the accused, if not represented by counsel or a solicitor, to address the court or jury otherwise than on oath on any matter on which, if he were so represented, counsel or a solicitor could address the court or jury on his behalf.
(2)Nothing in subsection (1) above shall prevent the accused making a statement without being sworn—
(a)if it is one which he is required by law to make personally; or
(b)if he makes it by way of mitigation before the court passes sentence upon him.”
Plainly Mair could have been making a plea in mitigation and it would almost certainly have been a plea of mitigation in the sense that he wished to explain his actions which would whatever they were bear on mitigation even if he was to say he thought his action justified because Cox was a traitor for supporting the EU.
The refusal to allow him to speak should have been challenged by his barrister but appears to to have been.
Another oddity of the trial was the reading into evidence, ie, before Mair was convicted, of Stephen Kinnock’s statement about how praisworthy he thought she was. That was simply bizarre because it could have no bearing on Mair”s guilt or innocence. Again Mair’s brief appears to have made no protest.
 

 

The Archers: an  everyday story of feminist folk

Robert Henderson

The Archers is the world’s longest running radio soap opera,  having run continuously  from  1951 to the present day. It is  set in Ambridge, a fictional  farming  village in the English midlands .  In the real world such a place would  even these days be  very white,  very English and  decidedly traditional in its ways.  For most of the Archers’ existence  the fiction  generally corresponded with the reality, but two decades or so ago things changed when the producer and scriptwriters of the series decided that the programme  should  pay homage to the three gods of political correctness: race, gay rights and feminism.  Consequently,  Ambridge has had visited upon it sundry  black and Asian characters,  a raft of gays, a female engineer, a female vicar, a white English vicar married to a Hindu  and a steady flow of politically correct storylines .

This new politically correct regime introduced  rules  which the characters have to meet. Non-white characters  must  invariably be middleclass with professional jobs  such as schoolteachers or lawyers. They must never be shown behaving badly and any criticism of them or ethnic minorities generally  by white characters, a very rare event, must be done in a way to portray the  white character as being  utterly beyond the politically correct Pale. The men must be  generally stupid, feckless, weak  or  cruel, while  the women and girls must  be shown as either oppressed by their men or superior to them , for example, when school public examination results hit the Ambridge doormats  this year all  the boys in the cast  were depicted as being none too bright  academically while the girls all came through with honours and headed  for university.

All that is in a day’s politically correct  agitprop work for the writers and producer  of the programme. The politically correct issue which has been dominating the series lately is the  coercing and control  of women by their menfolk. This  is  a storyline  of a different  order to anything which has gone before in terms of  sustained  – it has lasted for a year or more –  and remarkably crude politically correct propaganda.

The central  character in this propaganda  is Helen Titchener (Louiza Patikas). She is  a member of the Archer clan and  has been  much put upon by the scriptwriters  over the years  who have used her as a vehicle for various feminist issues. She has been an anorexic who was hospitalised. More generally her life has been a  continual round of failed relationships  with men,  including  that of her live-in lover Greg the gamekeeper (I kid you not)  leaving their relationship in the most emphatic manner by blowing his brains out with a 12-bore.  In despair at not finding a man who hangs around for  long Helen has had a child (as you do in feminharpy world) by artificial insemination with sperm provided by an anonymous donor. The result is a son Henry who is now aged five.

In her mid-thirties the scriptwriters gave her  a married man Rob Titchener (Timothy Watson) as a lover and eventually he becomes her husband.    Rob is generally  depicted as what feminists fondly but mistakenly  imagine  constitutes the behaviour of an alpha male, namely, being a selfish one-dimensional  brute who simply wants to control and use women. He   is depicted as perpetually  controlling Helen but  this control includes   (in politically correct eyes)  such heinous things as not wanting her to work  too hard while she is pregnant and being concerned about  her driving whilst pregnant  after she has an accident. There are also episodes where rape is hinted at. More of that later.

The  plot also attempts to show the controlling behaviour is a matter of conditioning with Rob’s father being a blustering bully and his mother highly manipulative. This of course fits neatly with the politically correct view of humanity, whether male or female ,being nothing more than the product of their social environment.

Eventually,  whilst still pregnant with Rob’s child,  Helen tells him she is going  to leave him  and in a piece of ludicrously  clumsy plotting by the scriptwriters they make Rob  place a knife in her hands before  telling her that the only way she can leave him is by turning the knife on herself.  As Helen is well advanced in pregnancy the idea of her stabbing herself to death is particularly far fetched and it is clearly just a  device to get a knife into her hands without her picking one up herself and thus  potentially incriminating herself.

Soon after Helen has had the knife thrust into her hands her  son Henry comes into the room and Rob orders him back to bed. He has never hit Henry and does not hit him now.  At this point  Helen stabs  Rob three times and leaves him close to death. She makes no attempt to call for an ambulance. Subsequently  Helen is charged with attempted murder with an alternative charge of wounding with intent and is held on remand. Whilst in custody she gives birth to her second son whom she calls Jack and Rob calls Gideon.

After being charged Helen ends up with Anna Tregorran, the daughter of a regular Archers’ characte, Carol Tregorran , as her barrister. Not content to simply present Anna in her role as a lawyer the scriptwriters decide to both make her full of angst about her failure to win  past domestic abuse  cases and be in the midst of  the emotional upset of the recent breaking up of her marriage to  her husband Max.  But Max turns out to be Maxine, thus  breaking new ground for the Archers with its  first overt depiction of a lesbian relationship.  (Despite being very eager  to have homosexual relationships in the programme, the Archers has always been strangely  coy when it comes to girl on girl action. )

When Helen is appears in court  at her trial the scriptwriters are  seen at their most heavy handed. They  begin the trial scenes by pushing evidence which makes a conviction likely. Telling facts  are put before the courts such as Helen’s failure to ring for an ambulance after stabbing Rob,  Helen’s threat to kill Rob in front of witnesses shortly before the stabbing were and the evidence of her 5-year-old son  – the only witness to the stabbing – who does not say anything which suggests  Rob had  threatened him.

This scenario rapidly changes as the trial progresses not least because  the judge always comes up with a judgement  favourable to the defence whenever something happens which might well have caused evidence favourable to Helen to be excluded  or the trial to be abandoned. A juror tweets “Man hating lezzie. Gonna make sure she goes down.” The judge allows the case to continue with eleven jurors, without making any attempt to discover if the errant  juror  had made his views known to the rest of the jury. (If he had done so that would most probably have stopped the trial dead in its tracks.)   When Helen makes claims of repeated rape during her evidence , not having mentioned rape at all before she entered the witness box, the  prosecution unsurprisingly objects.  The judge allows the evidence to stand. Rob’s ex-wife Jess comes forward at the last moment to give evidence of Rob’s controlling behaviour towards her which includes rape. Again the judge comes down on Helen’s side by allowing Jess to give similar fact evidence.  When the jury send out a note to the judge after a few hours deliberation saying they cannot come to a unanimous verdict,  the judge makes no attempt to get the jury to press on for a while longer but at the first time of asking says he will accept a majority verdict of 10-1.

Obvious lines of questioning  were  ignored by the prosecution.  For example,  questions about what relationship  Helen had with Jess  leading to the question “When did you last meet or speak with Helen?”  As the pair of them had met at Helen’s request not long before the stabbing of Rob the prosecution could easily have left the jury with the firm belief that the pair of them had plotted against Rob.

Helen’s sudden claim from the witness box that she had been repeatedly raped by Rob because he wanted to have a child soon after they were married and Helen did not – hardly unreasonable on Rob’s part because Helen   is in her mid thirties –went virtually unexamined. An obvious line of question for the prosecution would have been to ask her about her sexual relations with Rob before they were married. Presumably Helen would have said they were normal because it is wildly improbable that a dominant male like Rob would have  gone ahead with a marriage if his intended was denying him regular sex.   At that point the prosecution would have been able to ask a simple but devastating question, viz:  If you had  regular sexual relations before marriage why weren’t you worried about getting pregnant then? Helen would either have had to say she had not worried about getting pregnant then or more plausibly that she used contraception. Either way her claim of rape would  have looked decidedly odd because if it was simply a case of getting pregnant all she would have needed to do was use some form of reliable contraception.

The height of this many stranded absurdity was reached in the hour-long jury room episode .  By the end of the trial on the evidence given it would have been reasonable to have looked for a guilty verdict on at least the lesser charge of wounding with intent, for there was no certain evidence that the stabbing had taken  place in response to a reasonable fear that either Helen or her son were under threat of assault by Rob.

The jury was a distinctly  starry one with some well known  names in British acting including  Dame Eileen Atkins, Nigel Havers and Catherine Tate . Just to make sure the jury passed the diversity test one of the jurors was a Muslim  woman Parveen and to make sure the listeners did not miss this fact the scriptwriters had one of the jurors  compliment Parveen on her “beautiful headscarf”.

The jurors made the jury in 12 Angry Men look like a model of conscientious and restrained citizens seeking the truth.  Dennis  (Graham Seed) , who was dead set on finding Helen guilty,  Catherine Tate’s Lisa  was  the working-class white woman who had little patience with the idea that Helen had acted reasonably,  while Nigel Havers’s Carl, who was the jury foreman,  railed against the injustice of excuses only being made for women in the course of recounting how the courts had given his children to his wife after they split and added insult to injury by banning him from the family home whilst requiring him to pay the mortgage.   Jury vetting is nowhere near as through or as comprehensive as it is in the USA but I really do wonder whether all of those on this fictional jury , especially Carl, would have made it through the vetting system as it now exists which includes a criminal records check.

Set against them was the terminally irritating Jackie (Eileen Atkins)  who in the hectoring tones of  what used to be called a “county”  voice kept on repeating  with excruciating condescension that the point which  mattered was whether Helen had thought she or her son were in danger.  In fact that is not all the jurors have to satisfy themselves when it comes to self-defence  under English law.  They also need to address the question of whether “ a reasonable person would regard the force used as reasonable or excessive”.  Stabbing someone three times and nearly killing them when no certain  evidence had been produced to show that Helen had reasonable grounds to fear that she or her son was in serious and imminent danger from Rob is clearly not what a reasonable person would regard  as reasonable force.  All the jury had to go on was Helen’s word that Rob had given her the knife and told her she should kill herself, a story which in itself sounded far fetched  to some of the jury –   Rob of course denied  giving Helen the knife and telling her that she should kill herself.

The end of the trial comes with ridiculous abruptness. One moment the jurors are still arguing sixteen to the dozen (with six of the eleven for conviction on one or other of the charges), the next we are back in the courtroom with the foreman of the jury giving not guilty verdicts.   No explanation is given for the sudden change of heart of the majority.  Simply  as a piece of drama  this plotting was ridiculous. It was  as if the scriptwriters   had either been told the trial had to be over by a certain date  and simply wrote implausible tosh to meet the deadline or they  could not think of a plausible way of extricating Helen from the weight of evidence against her and the attitudes they had given the jurors, both of which pointed to a guilty verdict on one or other of the charges,  and got to the verdicts of not guilty as soon as they could in the hope the vast majority of the  audience  would not  notice the implausibility of what was going on because they wanted Helen to be found not guilty.

Not content  with the criminal trial the scriptwriters then had  a custody hearing for Henry and Jack held a week or so after the end of the criminal trial. The scriptwriters have the judge who acting in  the criminal trial presiding over the custody adjudication.  At the beginning of the hearing the judge warns counsel for Rob that having heard the criminal case he is going to take a great deal of persuading if custody is  of either boy is to be given to Rob. Could this really have happened in the real world? The judge then  proceeds to give custody of both boys to Helen,  denies Rob any access to Henry and only a few hours a week of heavily supervised access to Jack/Gideon.  This is done on the grounds that Rob – who has never harmed Henry  and has been an exemplary stepfather to the boy – represents a danger to the boy, while  Helen, an unbalanced neurotic who has shown herself to be very violent indeed, is deemed to present no threat at all.

Since the trial Rob has been s portrayed as being given the cold shoulder by the residents of  Ambridge.   No one argues his case by, for example,  pointing out the seriousness of his injuries or the fact that Henry is missing him.  Instead the script writers are making him more and more angry and uncontrolled in his behaviour  to provide one suspects further justification for Helen’s acquittal and grounds for ostracism and vilification by the other characters  and there are already hints that the police may investigate the alleged rapes

This type of black and white characterisation and plotting is pure agitprop. The ideological points are made in  the most blatant way so even the dimmest listener cannot miss them and  the  villain of the piece is deliberately  left with nothing more than a handful of traits which delineate the particular  “incorrect “behaviour which must be both condemned without qualification and punished.  This despite the fact that the scriptwriters have with the characters of Rob’s parents tried to demonstrate that Rob’s behaviour is all down to his upbringing. The scriptwriters want to have their cake and eat it by both punishing  Rob and saying he not responsible . It is what Orwell called doublethink.

Doublethink also applies to the discord between the portrayal of Helen  and what she allows to happen to her. Helen  is presented as  passive being completely  lacking agency within a relationship,  despite the fact that  the scriptwriters throughout  kept on emphasising that the character  started as a confident woman very much in charge of her own life. Well, a confident and capable woman should have the  capacity to say no or to simply walk away from a bullying man. Moreover, Helen was not dependent on Rob for money as they both worked for the family business and Helen could have left Rob at any time knowing that she had a ready made refuge the family farm for both herself and her child.

Part of the purpose of the year-long storyline was to undoubtedly  attract more listeners (which it reportedly did in large numbers ), but even more it was intended as  a cautionary feminist tale. It was designed  to indoctrinate the audience  with the idea that men are often if not invariably ruthless exploiters and groomers of women, who are reduced to being sexual, emotional and psychological slaves, and that  women may  physically attack their men viciously and get away with it provided they say they are being controlled by their men and believed they were in danger.

This  propaganda has probably  been put out now because there is a recently passed piece of UK legislation – Section 76 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 – which makes the coercion of those in a close relationship, family members or a sexual partner,   a criminal offence carrying a maximum sentence of five years. The Crown Prosecution Service  guidance on behaviours which are included in coercive control  include “Repeatedly putting them down such as telling them they are worthless” and  “Reputational damage”.    Talk about dangerously broad and subjective .

There are two complaints to make of the BBC’s resources being used to make this type of material. The first is  the utterly inept scriptwriting which most importantly  made Helen’s acquittal unbelievable; the second, the use of the BBC as a propaganda  tool in the politically correct interest.  The BBC often does this,  but the Helen/Rob propaganda tool  was extraordinarily one-eyed in intent and astonishingly  crudely  executed.

When the BBC is challenged about bias in a programme their favourite justification is that they attain balance over the whole range of BBC programmes relating to a topic. The use of the Archers over more than a year to promote the “coercion of women”  line unquestioningly is  probably the best example one could find of the BBC not only not  achieving balance over various programmes dealing with a particular subject but making no effort whatsoever to do so.

The intentions of this new law  are made crystal  clear in the Crown Prosecution Service guidance that “The Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Strategy provides an overarching framework for crimes identified as being primarily committed, but not exclusively, by men against women within a context of power and control.” Do not hold your breath waiting for a woman to be prosecuted under this law.

The Archers originally  went out in 1951  with the tagline an everyday story of simple countryfolk. Today it should  have the tagline An  everyday story of paranoid feminist folk.

The Hateful  8 – A tale told by an idiot

Main cast

Samuel L. Jackson as Major Marquis Warren a.k.a. “The Bounty Hunter”

Kurt Russell as John Ruth a.k.a. “The Hangman”

Jennifer Jason Leigh as Daisy Domergue a.k.a. “The Prisoner”

Walton Goggins as Sheriff Chris Mannix a.k.a.”The Sheriff”

Demián Bichir as Bob (Marco the Mexican) a.k.a. “The Mexican”

Tim Roth as Oswaldo Mobray (English Pete Hicox) a.k.a. “The Little Man”

Michael Madsen as Joe Gage (Grouch Douglass) a.k.a. “The Cow Puncher”

Bruce Dern as General Sanford “Sandy” Smithers a.k.a. “The Confederate”

Director and narrator: Quentin Tarantino

Tarantino is a very annoying director, not least because he is still playing the enfant terrible at an age when the thrill of provoking  adults should be long past.  The Hateful Eight contains all  his filmic outraging  stigmata: a great deal of bad and very un-pc language including oodles of “nigger” from the white characters  and  a decent helping of “cracker”  from the sole black character;  much  gory slaughter plus  a new outraging element  in the  Tarantino canon, the frequent brutal treatment of a woman including heavy  punches to her face and her  eventual  death by hanging by suspension.  If his works were classified as torture porn  he could not complain.

The annoying thing is despite his adolescent  mentality and the predictability of the general content and  style of his films, Tarantino so  often makes films  which are insidiously  watchable. We know what to expect ; we know objectively  that we should not approve   of the amoral  world he creates, we know that there will probably be no character who enlists our sympathy or liking,  but he still entices us in and we end up being drawn  to what he produces as spectators are drawn to a motorway  multiple crash.. It is a bit like watching Stanley Matthews  taking on a left back: the left back knew exactly what Matthews would do – drop his right shoulder and go round him – yet it was odds on that Matthews would  sell him a dummy and send him the wrong way.

The plot of Hateful 8  is simple in principle but complex in portrayal because the full facts of the situation are only gradually revealed.   The time is not long after the end of the American Civil War.   John Ruth  (Kurt Russell) is a white  bounty hunter who  likes to take his captures alive to stand trial not because he has any concern for justice, dearie me no,  he simply  likes to see them hang. As a consequence he has earned  the nickname . “The Hangman”.   Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson) is a black bounty hunter who takes the rule “dead or alive” to be best observed  by  the “dead” part of the injunction.

Ruth and Warren  are bringing in wanted criminals with handsome bounties attached.  Their destination is  Red Rock, Wyoming.  Ruth  has  a live woman Daisy Domergue  (Jennifer Jason Leigh)  in his custody while  Warren is packing two decidedly dead bodies.  Domergue is part of a notorious criminal  gang headed by her brother, Jody.

The two bounty hunters meet when a stage coach with Ruth and Domergue in it   is stopped by Warren who  climbs aboard. Another passenger  Chris Mannix  (Walton Goggins) is picked up a little later on.  He claims to be the newly appointed sheriff of   Red Rock travelling to the town to take up his position.

The stagecoach stops at  a roadhouse called Minnie’s Haberdashery  to shelter from an ever worsening snowstorm.  Minnie isn’t there but Southern General Sandy Smithers (Bruce Dern), a seeming drifter  Joe Cage (Michael Madsen) who claims to be a cowboy  on his way to visit his mother, and an  English conman and  part-time hangman called Oswaldo Mowbray (Tim Roth) are in residence together  with  Bob “Marco the Mexican” (Demián Bichir, ) who  claims to be  in charge  of the place because  Minnie is visiting her mother.    From the time that the stage coach arrives the  action is set  in or just outside  the roadhouse.

So far so seemingly  simple. Tarantino has created the West’s equivalent of a country  house murder mystery, a cast of characters all neatly stacked in a  tightly confined physical setting.  He even   uses the device loved by the likes of Agatha Christie  whereby there is an examination of  the suspects to a murder (in this case several murders through poisoning with a particularly toxic elixir of death)  while all the suspects are  together. However, unlike a country house murder mystery this is eventually a very  bloody and violent film which can vie with Tarantino’s  Inglorious Basterds or Pulp Fiction for its unashamed delight in gruesome  killing and the infliction of pain..

But the seemingly simple is in reality anything but simple. Apart from General Smithers  none of those who are  at the roadhouse when Ruth and Warren arrive are  what they claim to be and even  General Smithers is acting under duress. Even  Warren shows himself to be  a fantasist at best  by falsely claiming to have a personal  letter written  to him by Abraham Lincoln.

The action in the roadhouse starts relatively quietly with the characters  verbally  fencing with one another, although from the start there is a heavy mist of mutual suspicion,  before  accelerating  into the type of general mayhem  Tarantino loves.   By the end of the film everyone is dead or dying.   Goodies and baddies do not come into it because all the characters are seriously flawed moral  beings.

With the snowstorm raging unabated outside , the story  evolves  with clever use of time shifting as the true nature and circumstances of  those in Minnie’s Haberdashery  when Ruth and Warren arrive  is revealed  through flashbacks. This gives  the action  a staccato quality, especially towards the last third of the film,  as the immediate moment is increasingly  interrupted by  scenes from the recent past .  But this does not matter because the film is not  primarily concerned, as is common with  Tarantino’s films, with a conventional plot. Rather, he is offering the audience a sequence of arresting scenes to constantly capture their attention and   from which  scenes the plot eventually emerges.

There is  a high quality  cast with Kurt Russell  excelling in particular as the  type of self-sufficient frontiersman  character with a  time-beaten face who used to be a staple in Hollywood Westerns. Jennifer Jason  Leigh is stoical but also inexplicably calm until the story unravels to show the true purpose of those already at Minnie’s when Ruth, Warren and Domergue  arrive.  It is true that the main characters  have an large element of  caricature but that is all part of  the Tarantino method , something  Samuel Jackson is especially honours at as he goes splendidly over the top with his character.

Is the film an empty vessel sounding loud?  Looked at rationally the answer is yes because in the end there is no characters who enlist the sympathy of the audience and as is common with Tarantino there seems very little overall point or meaning . He subscribes to MacBeth’s lament “It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury signifying nothing.”   But the thing is  cleverly done  and intriguing spectacle has its place in the cinema.  Worth seeing as a guilty pleasure.

 

White Lives Must Matter (to US politicians)

Robert Henderson

The Dallas police shootings by a black man Micah Johnson who before dying made it clear he wanted to kill whites, has opened up a new front in the unacknowledged  insurrection of blacks in the  USA.  Insurrection  a wild  exaggeration , you say?  Well, what else can one call a growing idea amongst American blacks that to kill whites and in particular white police officers  is justified because of an imagined or at the least greatly inflated  general oppression, both historical and contemporary,  of blacks by whites .

As the frequent Muslim terrorist attacks in the West  show all too vividly, the  Internet is a   most efficient instrument to radicalise people  to reject the very idea of the rule of law, politics practised within a democratic system  or the toleration  of any ideas but their own.  There are now unmistakable  signs that the Internet is  being seriously used  in the radicalisation of blacks to adopt  an anti-white  mentality and to incite attacks on whites, for example, The Black Lives Matter group  is being used as a vehicle for incitement to harm whites.

There are also already  nascent black  militias forming, for example,  the  Black Panthers, a group which is  threatening to parade in numbers  with guns around the Republican convention in Ohio.  They can do this legally in Ohio because the carrying of guns openly is permitted there, but it is one thing to carry guns legally as a single person or even as a small group without any intent to threaten; quite another to be doing so in force outside a political convention of a party they demonise  whilst claiming that white America is practising genocide against black America.

The idea that black America is  being persecuted by white America  falls on fertile black ground because of the  victimhood promoted in blacks by white liberals since the 1960s and the sense of entitlement created by positive discrimination/affirmative action.    The first provides blacks with  an excuse for black failure and misbehaviour generally and a  justification for black violence, especially black violence against whites. The second feeds into the victimhood where an individual has not benefited from positive discrimination/affirmative action, or worse, it has been applied to  a black individual to get them into a job or a university course only for them not to be able to seize the opportunity they were given.

The ostensible reason for the rising  black militancy is the killing of blacks by police officers. It is true that many blacks are killed by police officers in the USA but then so are large numbers of whites and ethnic minorities other than blacks.  Comprehensive official figures for police killings are not collected in the USA,  but it is clear from what statistics there are including research by private bodies such as the media that more whites are killed by police  than blacks in the USA.   The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has stats on “homicides by legal intervention”. These are killings  by deadly force by anyone authorised to use such force by the state,  in effect,  the police.  In the period 1999-2011” 2,151 whites died by being shot by police compared to 1,130 blacks”. Another more recent source is the Washington Post which found just under  50% of such killings were of whites.

The fact that so many whites are killed by the police suggests that the police kill not because of race but because of the behaviour  and circumstances of suspects and the state of mind  of police officers when they are in a situation which results in the killing of someone they have stopped either to arrest or question..

Why do black men get killed by police officers more often than whites or minorities other than blacks in proportion to their  proportion of the US population? The quick answer is that they  engage in far more crime and especially  violent crime than whites and other minorities so the likelihood of them coming across police taking an interest in what they are doing is increased.   They are also perceived, probably correctly, to be more likely to carry a weapon, especially a gun, and  more likely to resist arrest with violence. Black males  are also on average physically larger than other racial groups.  All of this inevitably makes police officers jumpy when they are dealing with blacks,  a nervousness that goes on top of the natural tension created by officers being armed.

On the black side of the equation, black men are very reluctant to accept any criticism from whites let alone the imposition of authority such as a police officer carries. This will  probably make black men less likely to obey a police officer’s commands. The individual police officer is aware of all this and more inclined to draw and use their weapon.    The Rodney King case is a good example of both this and the willingness of the media to censor video evidence to make the police look like violent hooligans by not showing what led up to their attack on King.    The full video evidence showed King, a young and powerfully built man,  refusing to  obey police orders and  charging an officer.

High rates of black delinquency also show up in the interracial violence statistics. Official US statistics for the 2012/13 period show 560,600 violent crimes against whites, whereas whites committed only 99,403 such crimes against blacks.

Apologists for black violence say that the   difference in the frequency of  violent crime by blacks on whites compared with whites on blacks is  because there are far fewer blacks than whites in the USA  and therefore a black person is much more likely to encounter a white person. This  will not stand up because  the argument works both ways. Because there are many more whites than blacks that will mean that many more whites will encounter blacks. If  the propensity to commit violent crime is the same in both white and black populations this should mean that blacks are subject to more assaults by whites because more whites meet them.  The fact that blacks commit so many more crimes of violence against whites can only mean that either/or blacks have a greater natural tendency to be violent generally or they are frequently choosing white victims simply because they are white,

There is also the question of how often blacks and whites meet. Much of the United States  is segregated by race and ethnicity.   This means that the likelihood of blacks meeting whites will be substantially below what a simple arithmetic calculation based on respective group population sizes gives. It could be that the crimes of violence committed against whites by blacks is even more dramatic because on average blacks encounter whites far less frequently than is thought because of the ghetto effect. .

Arrest rates of different races  will  depend on the type of crimes committed.  Those committing  very visible  crimes such as street dealing  and mugging  – crimes favoured by blacks – are probably more likely to be arrested and charged than those committing less visible crimes such as  burglary  or a mail order fraud  – crimes favoured by whites.

Finally, because blacks have a higher conviction rate than whites they will have a far larger proportion of their  population  who are known  to the police as convicted criminals.   This will make the likelihood of them becoming involved with the police much higher than it is for whites who commit fewer crimes.

Those who claim that the black experience in the USA  is unique  need to explain why other non-white groups in the USA  such as Asians  do not display the same antisocial and often violent behaviour  that blacks  in the e USA  frequently display.  The idea that it is all down to the legacy of  slavery becomes thinner as each  year passes.  Slavery in the US  was abolished 151 years ago. Taking a generation as 25 years that is six generations and two of those generations have seen the bestowing of privilege on blacks through affirmative action. Moreover, many of the blacks in the US today are not the  descendants of slaves but the immigrants from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa, many of whom are recent incomers. It is also telling that where blacks are in the majority in a country their  behaviour is  broadly  reminiscent of that of blacks in the USA and the West generally, that is,  prone to antisocial behaviour especially violence.

A more plausible explanation for the  fact that blacks commit so much more crime and especially violent crime is likely to be found in their biology.  Blacks have an inferior  IQ distribution compared with whites and Asians of the Chinese type.  American blacks have an average IQ of 85, whites 103 and Asians 106. It could be that Blacks as a group simply find it harder to cope in  a sophisticated first world society such as the USA and their frustration in not being able to cope leads to criminality and violence. See my A low IQ individual in a high IQ society.   The frustration of those who have benefitted from affirmative action and have failed to cope  would  probably  be unusually sharp.

Blacks also have substantially higher testosterone levels compared to white. If testosterone leads to greater aggression this could be a partial explanation for  the prevalence of black violence. Another partial explanation could be higher rates of  the gene MAOA-3R — the “original warrior gene” – in blacks than whites, although this research is still questionable not in the sense that the amount of the gene which blacks have in comparison with other races (substantially higher)  but in connecting the gene to violent behaviour..

Whatever the cause of black behaviour one thing is certain, the present radicalisation of blacks to in some cases  a red-hot hatred of whites can only lead to more and more violence, more and more disorder. Already the violent crimes committed by blacks on whites are at a level which  should have long ago brought US government action  to protect whites.  (Just imagine the elite uproar if  the propensity of  whites to  assault blacks  was the same as the actual current propensity of blacks to assault whites). Only political correctness has prevented this happening or a white grass roots really making waves in the US political mainstream.  But political dams are like real dams, sooner or later they burst. Indeed, the bursting may be close to hand with Donald Trump making a realistic run for the White House.

There is a crying need  for a  politicians in the USA to  breach to fantasy world of the politically correct clique which hold the reins of power and influence in the USA.  White politicians must stop making excuses for black misbehaviour  and give whites generally the confidence to complain when blacks behave badly, something which would require the dismantling of political correctness related to race including the ending affirmative action.  On the black side of the matter, blacks with a public profile need to stop playing the victim and make it clear that blacks going around killing white police,  far from dissuading the police from shooting black men  will almost certainly  increase the killing of black men not just out of revenge, although that  will come into it, but also because white police  officers will be ever more nervous when tackling a black suspect. In short, there needs to be a complete culture change in the USA’s attitude towards blacks.

Those with power and influence in the USA  need to get a grip on this now because if the killing of whites by blacks continues it is easy to see how vigilante wars will break out with blacks and whites regularly killing one another for no  reason other than  they are black and white.

 

The West is a sitting duck while Muslims are in our midst

Robert Henderson

The latest Muslim terrorist massacre has been particularly savage. A Tunisian with French citizenship Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel  deliberately drove a heavy articulated lorry along a crowded road full of people for more than a mile deliberately  killing 84 people  including ten children and injuring dozens more. The injuries to many of the dead were so severe that they  could not  be identified because their faces had been crushed as they went under the wheels of the lorry. The terrorist organisation ISIS  has claimed that the attack was in response to their urging of Muslims in the West to attack non-Muslims with any means they could find including motor vehicles.

What can be done to stop such outrages? The brutal truth is that while large numbers of Muslims are in the West nothing much can be done to stop this form of subcontracted terrorism which is of a  very different nature from  what might be called conventional terrorism. In a conventional terrorist war in a society with a substantial minority (or even an oppressed majority ) from which terrorists are drawn support for terrorism is pyramidal. The troubles in Northern Ireland  are a first rate  example of such a war. At the top are the planners and executive players. Below them are the bomb makers and armourers. Alongside them are the active terrorists carrying out bombings, shootings etc.   Below them come  those willing to provide safe houses for people and weapons. Below them come those who can be relied on to  demonstrate with a degree of violence at the drop of a hat. Below them come the mass of the minority many of whom say “I don’t approve of their methods but I agree with their ends”.  Members of this slyly complicit majority of the minority  are also most unlikely to give information to the police about terrorist activity, not least because they will fear  violent repercussions.  Their passivity and ambivalence provides in Mao’s words “The sea in which the terrorists swim”.

All this interlinking activity provides plenty of opportunity for the security services dealing with such an insurgency to gather intelligence which thwarts planned terrorist acts. Often the intelligence comes into their hands because of the inability of terrorists to keep their plans to themselves, either because they allow themselves to be infiltrated by agents of the state or simply out of vanity. ( Ask any police detective about identifying criminals and they will  tell you a large proportion of criminal convictions come from the inability of criminals to resist the temptation to boast about what they are up to). The need to source weapons and munitions is another weakness because that  brings in people from outside the terrorist organisation and the number of arms suppliers will be limited and more likely to be identified by security services.

Muslim terrorism in the West is something different. To begin with its practitioners are only too willing to commit suicide.  This is rare behaviour amongst conventional terrorists. Members of the Provisional IRA had no such appetite.  It is also a very effective form of terrorism and long recognised as such.  George IIII said  that anyone who was willing to lose their life in an attempt on his life would probably succeed because it was simply impossible to guard against such a determined assassin who would only have to get close enough to stab or shoot him.  The suicide attacker also deprives the attacked of any chance of punishing him or her, a substantial psychological benefit.

It is true that some  of  the circumstances of the conventional terrorist war exists in the war that is now being waged by  Islam against the West  (Islam is waging war over the globe but I shall not deal with that here, although the same basic problem exists everywhere ).  The providing of the “sea in which the terrorists swim”, the at best ambivalent  attitude of many Muslims in the West towards Western society and the sense of victimhood which readily excuses any action they take against Western societies are all active,  but because of its diffuse and laissez faire nature most  of the elements of conventional terrorist war is missing. There may be some outside direction and assistance from the likes of ISIS and Al Qaeda  but plainly it is possible, as the latest atrocity shows, to cause mayhem if the terrorist is simply an individual who uses  as his weapon  a motor vehicle.   Moreover,  even if a would-be terrorist wants to use a bomb or a gun it is not that difficult to find instructions on the Internet to make the first and in many parts of the West getting a gun and plenty of ammunition is not difficult. As to getting training in using weapons, if we believe the media reports and security warnings, there are thousands of radicalised Muslims who have come back to the West after receiving such training and battle experience  from places such as Syria, Afghanistan and Libya.  Lone wolf terrorists or terrorists working in small groups have a wide range of terrorist acts they can choose from and it is unrealistic to expect Western security forces to make much of a dent in the number of attacks by such people.

But even where a plot is more substantial and/or may include foreign direction and consequently leave more possible openings for the security forces to come across the plotters, things are not simple. Political correctness puts up  barriers to rigorous investigations. The ready formation of immigrant ghettos make infiltration difficult not least  because wannabe terrorists are  often of an ethnicity  alien to the country in which they are living. This  means that if their group is to be infiltrated it can only be by someone sharing their ethnicity and speaking their language. There is not  a huge number of such people willing to spy on their own community and even if such people are recruited there is a strong likelihood that a significant number will have joined to get information about the security services, that is,  to act as a mole for terrorists.

The last difficulty is the sheer numbers of potential terrorists. To take the UK as an example, there are an estimated 3 million Muslims here.  If one in a thousand was a serious terrorist that would be 3,000  serious terrorists; if one in a hundred there would be 30,000. But whatever the numbers of really serious terrorists to do their work meaningfully  the security services  would have to  investigate many more Muslims, perhaps hundreds of thousands, because polls and research often show, for example, alarming numbers of  Muslims in the West supporting suicide bombings.   These are numbers  which are utterly beyond Britain’s security resources (or those of any other country)  to identify and monitor.

Why  were these very  obvious fifth columns allowed to settle in the West? Because of  an  irrational belief in the potency of human rationality at best and a treasonous hatred of their own societies at worst  of the internationalist elites which have dominated in the West during the last 50 years.  These elites  imagine that human beings are interchangeable and  that claims of culture and  race count for nothing, that human beings can simply be “educated” into accepting mulgticulturalism. Some actively hated their own societies and wilfully encouraged  mass immigration to ensure that their societies were in their words “enriched” by becoming less homogeneous.

The madness is  going on with huge numbers of Muslims still being allowed into the West because Western elites cannot break themselves of their addiction to the internationalist fantasy or are terrified of what will happen now such large numbers of Muslims are in the West. In any sane society the permitting of the mass immigration of those who are antagonistic towards the values of the country which is receiving them would be seen for what it is, treason.  Sooner or later that is what it will be called.

The truth is the British are  against further mass immigration full stop

British Future report says 25% of British adults want all immigrants repatriated

Robert Henderson

The desperate attempts of the Remain  side to paint those who wish to leave the EU as,   at one and the same time,  racist and unrepresentative of the British as a whole are ludicrous. Both claims cannot be true because  polls  show  that the numbers  wanting to vote to leave are at worst on a  par  with those who wish to leave.

Polls and research on immigration to the UK invariably give a majority against future mass  immigration despite the strong incentive of those canvassed for their opinion to give either the politically correct answer  for fear of being called a racist or to look for what they consider is a safe proxy for saying they want an end to mass immigration or at least see  a severe reduction in numbers. The proxies they choose  are statements   made by mainstream politicians which are  deemed safe to repeat simply because  they have been sanctioned  by their use by politicians.  This leads  people to say things such as “It is alright provided they work and pay their way” or “We should have a points systems like Australia”. This of course does not address express the  real wishes  of most of the British public , but those making such statements  feel  they  dare not get  nearer  to the truth  of what they feel because that is the limit of what is permitted by the  politically correct elite.

What are the real feelings about immigration  of the British? They are far more antagonistic  to it than  politicians or the mainstream media allow.   In 2014 the think-tank British Future  published  the report How to talk about immigration based on research conducted by ICM, Ipsos MORI and YouGov. This  purports  to provide a blueprint for both the pros and antis in the immigration debate  to manage the subject  most effectively in public discussion.  This is not something which they achieve because they have bought into the internationalist agenda, viz: “Some three or four generations on from Windrush, it is now a settled and irreversible fact that we are a multi-ethnic society. Managing immigration effectively and fairly in the public interest  should and does matter to Britons from different ethnic backgrounds. We should be suspicious of approaches that sharply polarise British citizens along racial lines, in whatever direction”.

Nonetheless the research  does have much of interest.  One finding  is truly startling. Faced with the question  “The government should insist that all immigrants should return to the countries they came from, whether they’re here legally or illegally”  the result was Agree 25%, disagree 52% and neither 23%. (P17 of the report).  In addition, many of those who said no to forced repatriation were also firm supporters of strong border controls and restrictive  immigration policies.

The fact that 25% of the population have overcome their fear of  falling foul of the pc police and say that they do not merely want immigration stopped but sent into reverse is  stunning. Moreover, because political correctness has taken such an intimidating place in British society it is reasonable to assume that a substantial number of those who said they disagreed did so simply out of fear of being accused of racism.

The obverse of the immigration coin was shown by the question “In an increasingly borderless world, we should welcome anyone who wants to come to Britain and not deter them with border controls” (P16 of the report).  The results were 14% agree, 67% disagree and 19% don’t know.

That only 14% support such a policy compared to the 25% who  wished for forced repatriation is striking in itself, but  it is even better for the  opponents of immigration than it looks for two reasons. First, the 14%  of those who agreed with the question will be the honest figure because to say that you want open borders carries with it no penalties from the pc police  and will gain the person brownie points amongst the politically correct elite and their auxiliaries. Second,  as already mentioned, the 25% of those wanting forced repatriation of all immigrants will understate the true position because a significant proportion of those questioned with be lying out of fear.

The report also shows that older voters are more likely to be those who are most strongly opposed to immigration (P11 of the report).  That is important because older voters are the most likely to vote.

Taking all that into account  it is reasonable to assume that a referendum with the question “Do you wish to end mass immigration?”  would result in a solid probably an overwhelming YES vote.

These facts  should persuade politicians that they would risk nothing if they move much further to restrict  immigration than they have already done and in so doing  that they would  gain  considerable  extra electoral support.

This may well happen. Public rhetoric  about immigration is rapidly hardening There will come a tipping point where  the rhetoric  has departed so far from the politically correct position that serious  action to restrict immigration will occur because the stretch between rhetoric and action will  become too great to sustain in a society where governments are elected.

A party political  bidding process on the  subject of immigration is already taking place  and there will come a point where serious action has to follow  or there will be a very real chance that either one or more of the mainstream parties will become irrelevant and be superseded, or members of the mainstream parties will wrest control of these parties from their pc indoctrinated leadership  and adopt a policy on immigration  closer to what the public wants.

The other important effect of greater political honesty in political utterances about immigration is that it makes  it much easier for people generally to speak openly about their feelings on the subject and to lobby for radical action.   In  turn this will feed the desire of politicians to gain electoral credibility by being  ever former in their immigration policies.  Indeed, the only reason that the present immigration has been allowed to develop is because the subject has been effectively wiped off the public debate agenda since the1970s.

In the immediate context of the EU referendum those supporting the leave campaign should have no fear or embarrassment in making clear that after the question of sovereignty – from which all else flows – that the most important issue is immigration.  That is what will win the referendum  for the leave side.

 

 

Brexit: the movie

Director  and narrator Martin Durkin

Running time 71 minutes

As an instrument   to rally the leave vote  Brexit: the movie is severely flawed.  It starts promisingly by stressing the loss of sovereignty , the lack of democracy in the EU and the corrupt greed of its servants (my favourite abuse was a shopping mall for EU politicians and bureaucrats only – eat your heart out Soviet Union) and the ways in which  Brussels spends British taxpayers money and sabotages industries such as fishing.  Then  it all begins to go sour.

The film’s audience should have been the British electorate  as a whole.  That means making a film which appeals to all who might vote to leave using arguments which are not nakedly  politically  ideological. Sadly, that is precisely what has not  happened here because Brexit the movie  has as   director and narrator Martin Durkin, a card carrying disciple of the neo-liberal creed. Here are a couple of snatches from his website:

Capitalism is the free exchange of services voluntarily rendered and received. It is a relationship between people, characterized by freedom. Adding ‘global’ merely indicates that governments have been less than successful at hindering the free exchange of people’s services across national boundaries.

And

Well it’s time to think the unthinkable again, and to privatise the biggest State monopoly of all … the monopoly which is so ubiquitous it usually goes unnoticed, but which has impoverished us more than any other and is the cause of the current world banking and financial crisis.  It is time to privatise money.

Unsurprisingly Durkin has filled the film with people who with varying degrees of fervour share his ideological beliefs. These include John Redwood,  James Delingpole, Janet Daley, Matt Ridley, Mark Littlewood,  Daniel Hannon, Patrick Minford, Melanie Phillips Simon Heffer, Michael Howard and  Douglas Carswell , all supporting the leave side but doing so in a way which would alienate those who have not bought into the free market free trade ideology. The only people interviewed in the film who were from the left of the political spectrum are Labour’s biggest donor John Wells and Labour MPs  Kate Hoey and Steve Baker.

There is also a hefty segment of the film  (20.50 minutes – 30 minutes)  devoted to a risibly false  description of Britain’s economic history from the beginnings of the industrial revolution to the  position of Britain in the 1970s.  In it Durkin claims that the nineteenth century was a time of a very unregulated British economy, both domestically and  with regard to international trade, which allowed Britain to grow and flourish wondrously .  In fact, the first century and half or so of the Industrial Revolution  up to around 1860 was conducted under what was known as the Old Colonial System,   a very  wide-ranging form of protectionism. In addition, the nineteenth century saw the introduction of many Acts which regulated the employment of children and the conditions of work for employees in general and  for much of the century  the century  magistrates had much wider powers than they do today such as setting the price of basic foodstuffs and wages and enforcing apprenticeships.

Durkin then goes on to praise Britain’s continued economic expansion up until the Great War which he ascribes to Britain’s rejection of protectionism. The problem with this is that   Britain’s adherence to the nearest any country have ever gone  to free trade – the situation  is complicated by Britain’s huge Empire –  between 1860 and 1914 is a period of comparative industrial decline  with highly protectionist countries such as the USA and Germany making massive advances.

Next, Durkin paints a picture of a Britain regulated half to death in the Great War, regulation which often  continued into the peacetime inter-war years before a further dose of war in 1939  brought with it even more state control. Finally, the period of 1945 to the coming of Thatcher is represented as a time of a British economy over-regulated and protected economy falling headlong  into an abyss of uncompetitive economic failure before  Thatcher rescued the country.

The reality is that Britain came out of the Great Depression faster than any other large economy, aided by a mixture of removal from the Gold Bullion Standard, Keynsian pump priming and re-armament, all of these being state measures.  As for the period 1945 until the oil shock of 1973,   British economic growth was higher than it has been  overall in the forty years  since.

Even if the film had given a truthful account of Britain’s economic history over the past few centuries  there would have been a problem. Having speaker after speaker putting forward the laissez faire  position, saying that Britain would be so much more prosperous if they could trade more with the rest of the world by  having much less regulation, being open to unrestricted foreign investment   and, most devastatingly,  that it  would allow people to be recruited from around the world rather than just the EU or EEA (with the implication that it is racist to privilege Europeans over people from Africa and Asia) is not  the way  to win people to the leave side.

The legacy of Thatcher  is problematic.  Revered by true believers in  the neo-liberal  credo she is hated by many  more for there  are still millions in the country who detest what she stood for and  for whom people spouting the same kind of rhetoric she used in support of Brexit  is  a  turn off. To them can be  added  many others who instinctively feel that globalisation is wrong and threatening and talk of economics in which human beings are treated as pawns deeply repulsive.

There is also a  truly  astonishing  omission in the film. At the most modest assessment immigration is one of the major concerns of  British electors  (and probably the greatest concern  when the fear of being called a racist if one opposes immigration is factored in), yet the film avoids the subject. There is a point  towards the end of the film (go in at  61 minutes) when it briefly  looks as though it might be raised when the commentary poses the question “Ah, what if the  EU proposes a trade deal which forces upon us open borders and other stuff  we don’t like?   But that leads to no discussion  about immigration,  merely the  statement of  the pedantically  true claim that Britain  does not have to sign a treaty if its terms are not acceptable. This of course begs the question of who will decide what is acceptable. There a has been no suggestion that there are any lines in the sand which will not be crossed in negotiations with the EU and there is no promise of a second referendum after terms have been negotiated with the EU or, indeed,  with any other part of the world. Consequently,   electors can have no confidence those who conduct  negotiations will not give away vital things such as control of our borders.

As immigration is such a core part of  what  British voters worry about most ,both in the EU context and immigration generally,  it is difficult to come up with a an explanation for this startling omission  which  is not pejorative. It can only have been done for one of two reasons:  either the maker of the film  did not want the issue addressed or many of those appearing in the film  would  not have appeared if the  immigration drum had been beaten.  In view of both Durkin’s ideological position and the general tenor of the film,  the most plausible reason is that Durkin did not want the subject discussed because the idea of free movement of labour is a central part of the neo-liberal  ideology. He will see labour as simply a factor of production along with land and capital. Durkin  even managed to include interviews conducted in Switzerland (go in at 52 minutes )which  painted the country as a land of milk and honey without  mentioning that the Swiss had a citizen initiated referendum on restricting immigration in 2014 and are pushing for another.

The point at issue is not whether neo-liberalism is a good or a bad thing,  but the fact that an argument for leaving the EU which is primarily based on the ideology is bound to alienate many who do not think kindly of the EU, but who do not share the neo-liberal’s enthusiasm for an  unregulated or under-regulated  economy   and  a commitment to globalism, which frequently means  jobs are either off-shored or taken by immigrants who undercut wages and place a great strain on public services. This in practice results in mass immigration , which apart from competition for jobs, houses  and services,   fundamentally alters the  nature of the areas of  Britain in  which  immigrants settle and,  in the longer term, the  nature of Britain itself .

The excessive  concentration on economic matters is itself a major flaw, because  most of the electorate  will  variously not be able to understand , be bored by the detail  and turn off or  simply disregard the claims made as being  by their  nature  unknowable in reality. The difficulty of incomprehension and boredom is  compounded by there being  far  too many talking heads, often  speaking for a matter of seconds at a time.  I also found the use of Monty Python-style graphics irritatingly shallow and  a sequence lampooning European workers compared with the Chinese downright silly (go in at  37 minutes).

What the film should have done was rest  the arguments for leaving on the question of  sovereignty.  That is what this vote is all about: do you want Britain to be a sovereign nation ? Everything flows from the question of sovereignty : can we control our borders?; can we make our own laws?  Once sovereignty is seen as the only real question, then what we may or may not do after regaining our sovereignty is in our hands. If the British people wish to have a  more regulated market they can vote for it. If they want a neo-liberal economy they can vote for it. The point is that at present we cannot vote for either . As I mentioned in my introduction the sovereignty issue is raised many times in the film.  The problem is that it was so often  tied into the idea of free trade and unregulated markets that the sovereignty message raises the question in many minds of what will those with power – who overwhelmingly have bought into globalism and neo-liberal economics –  do with sovereignty rather than the value of sovereignty itself.

Will the film help the leave cause? I think it is the toss of a coin whether it will persuade more people to vote leave than or alienate more with  its neo-liberal message.

Brexiteers: hold your nerve

Robert Henderson

Recent polls are overall veering towards   but not decisively towards a remain  win in the referendum.  It is important that those wanting  leave the EU should not get downhearted. There are still the TV debates to come which will expose the often hypocritical and always vacuous positions those advocating  a vote to remain will of necessity have to put forward because  they have no hard facts to support their position and  can offer only a catalogue of ever more wondrously improbable disasters they claim will happen if Brexit occurs, everything from the collapse of the world economy to World War III  The only things they have  not predicted are a giant  meteorite hitting Earth and wiping out the  human race or, to entice the religious inclined vote, the coming of the end of days.

There are other signs which should hearten the leave camp. There appears little doubt that those who intend to vote to leave  will on average be more likely to turn out to vote than those who  want to remain.. This is partly because older voters  favour Brexit more than younger voters and older voters are much more likely to turn out and actually vote.  But there is also the question of what people are voting for.  Leaving  to become masters in our own house is a positive message. There is nothing  positive about the remain  side’s blandishments.  A positive message is always likely to energise people to act than a negative one. Moreover, what the remain side are saying directly or by implication is that at best they have no confidence in their own country and at worst they want Britain to be in the EU to ensure that it is emasculated as a nation state because they disapprove of nation states.  Such a stance will make even those tending towards voting to remain to perhaps either not vote or to switch to voting leave.

What should we make of the polls?

What should we make of the polls?  Leaving aside the question of how accurate they are, it is interesting that the polls which are showing strongest for a vote to remain are the telephone polls. Those conducted online tend to produce a close result, often half and half on either side.  Some have the Leave side ahead. On the face of things this is rather odd because traditional polling wisdom has it that online polls will tend to favour younger people for the obvious reason that the young are much more likely be comfortable living their lives online than  older people.  Even if online polls are chosen to represent a balanced sample including age composition the fact that older people are generally not so computer savvy means that any sample used with older people is unlikely to represent older generally whereas  the part of the polling audience which is young can be made to represent  the  younger part of the population  because  almost all of the young use digital technology without thinking.

It is likely that the older people who contribute to online polls are richer and  better educated on average than the old as a group. But that  brings its own problem for the remain side because another article of faith amongst pollsters is that the better educated and richer you are the more likely you are to vote to remain  in the EU.  Moreover, if the samples are properly selected for both online and  phone polls why should there be such a difference?   Frankly, I have my doubts about  samples being  properly selected because  there are severe practical problems when it comes to  identifying the people who will make a representative sample.  Polling companies also weight their  results which must at the least introduce an element of subjectivity. Then there is also the panel effect where pollsters use panels made up of people they have vetted and  decided are panel material.  Pollsters admit all these difficulties.  You can find the pollster YouGov’s  defence of such practices and how they supposedly overcome their  difficulties here.

The performance of pollsters in recent years has been underwhelming.  It could be that their polling on the referendum is  badly  wrong.  That could be down to the problems detailed in the previous paragraph, but it could also be how human beings respond to different forms of polling.  Pollsters have been caught out by the “silent Tory” phenomenon  whereby voters are unwilling to say they intend to vote Tory much more often than voters for other parties such  as Labour and the LibDems  are unwilling to admit they will be voting for those parties.   It could be that there  are “silent Brexiteer”  voters who  refuse to admit to wanting to vote  to leave the  EU,  while there are  no  or very few corresponding  “silent remain” voters.  This could explain why Internet polls show more Brexit voters than phone or face-to-face  polls.  If a voter is speaking to a pollster, especially if they are in the physical company of the pollster, the person will feel they are being judged by the person asking the questions.  If they think their way of voting is likely to be disapproved of by the questioner  because it is not the “right view”,   the person being questioned may well feel embarrassed if they say they are supporting  a view which goes against what  is promoted every day in the mainstream media as the “right view” .  The fact that the person asking the questions is also likely  to come from the same general class as those who dominate the mainstream media  heightens the likelihood of embarrassment on the part of those being questioned.

The “embarrassment factor”  is a phenomenon  which  can be seen in the polling on contentious subjects  generally. Take  immigration  as an example. People are terrified of being labelled as a racist. At the same time they are quite reasonably very anxious  about the effects of mass immigration.  They  try to square the circle of their real beliefs with their fear of being labelled a racist – and it takes precious little for the cry of racist to go up these days – by seizing  on reasons to object to mass immigration which they believe have been sanctioned as safe by those with power  and influence such  as saying that they are not  against immigrants but they  think that illegal immigrants should be sent home or that the numbers of immigrants should be much reduced because of the pressure on schools, jobs, hospitals and housing . What they dare not say is  that they object to immigration full stop because it changes the nature of their society.

There is an element of the fear of being called a racist  in Brexit because a main, probably the primary issue for  most of those wanting to vote to leave  in the referendum is the control of borders. This means that   saying you are for Brexit raises in the person’s mind a worry that this will be interpreted as racist at worst and “little Englanderish” at best.

There is a secondary reason why  those being interviewed are nervous. The poll they are contributing to will not be just a single question, such  as how do you intend to vote in the European referendum?  There will be  a range of questions which are designed to show things such as propensity to vote or which issues are the most important. Saying immigration control raises the problem of fear of being  classified as  racist, but there will be other issues which are nothing like as contentious on which the person being polled really does not have a coherent   opinion.  They will then feel a fear of being thought ignorant or stupid if they cannot explain lucidly why they feel this or that policy is important.

That leaves the question of why online polls show more for Brexit and phone or face-to-face-polls.  I suggest this. Answering a poll online is impersonal. There is no sense of being immediately judged by another.  The psychology is akin to going into a ballot booth  and voting.  This results in more honesty  about voting to leave.

The referendum  is just the beginning of the  war

Whatever the result of the referendum that will not be the end of matters. There is a gaping  hole in the referendum debate . There has been no commitment  by  any politician to what exactly  they would be asking for from  the EU if the vote is to leave and what they would definitely not accept.   Should that happen we must do our best ensure that those undertaking the negotiations on Britain’s behalf do not surreptitiously  attempt to subvert the vote by stitching Britain back into the EU by negotiating a treaty which obligates Britain to  such things as free movement of people  between Britain and the EU and a  hefty payment each year to the EU (a modern form of Danegeld).   A vote to leave must give Britain back her sovereignty  utterly  and that means Westminster being able to  pass any laws it wants  and that these   will supersede any  existing  obligations to foreign states and institutions, having absolute control of Britain’s borders, being able to protect strategic British  industries and giving preference to British companies where public contracts are offered to  private business.

It there is a  vote to remain  that does not mean the question of  Britain leaving is closed for a generation  any more than the vote of Scottish independence sealed the matter for twenty years or more.  For another referendum  to be ruled out for several decades would be both dangerous and profoundly undemocratic.

Imagine that Britain  having voted to remain the EU decides to push through legislation to bring about the United States of Europe which many of the most senior Eurocrats and pro-EU politicians have made no bones about wanting,  the EU  wants Turkey  to be given membership,  immigration from and via the EU continues to run out of hand  or  the EU adopts regulations for  financial services which gravely  damage the City of London.  Are we to honestly say that no future referendum cannot be held?

Of course on some issues such as the admission of new members  Britain still has a veto  but can we be certain that it would used to stop Turkey joining?  David Cameron has made it all too  clear that he supports  Turkey’s accession and the ongoing immigrant crisis in the Middle East has already wrung the considerable concession of visa-free travel in the Schengen Area from the EU without the Cameron government offering any complaint. Instead all that Cameron does is bleat that Britain still has border controls which allow Britain to refuse entry to and deport those from outside the EU and the European Economic Area.  However, this is the same government which has been reducing Britain’s border force and has deported by force very few people.

You may  think that if new members are admitted to the EU a referendum would automatically be held under the European Union Act of 2011. Not so, viz: .

4 Cases where treaty or Article 48(6) decision attracts a referendum

(4)A treaty or Article 48(6) decision does not fall within this section merely because it involves one or more of the following—

(a)the codification of practice under TEU or TFEU in relation to the previous exercise of an existing competence;

(b)the making of any provision that applies only to member States other than the United Kingdom;

(c)in the case of a treaty, the accession of a new member State.

In practice it would be up to the government of the day to decide whether a referendum should be held.  The  circumstances where the Act requires a referendum are to do with changes to the powers and duties of EU members. The simple  accession of a new member does not fall under those heads. Nor does the Act provide for a referendum where there is no change to existing EU treaties or massive changes are made  without a Treaty being involved, for example,  Britain has had no referendum on Turkey  being given visa free movement within  the Schengen Area. Make sure you vote

Regardless of what the Polls say make sure you vote The bigger the victory for the OUT side the less the Europhiles will be able to do to subvert what happens after the vote.   If the vote is to stay  the closer it is the less traction it gives the -Europhiles .  Either way, the vote on the 23 June is merely the first battle in a war, not the end of the war.

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