Thursday, 24 February 2011

Killing the Green Party

The weakest link

You’ve maybe heard the old saying “when elephants fight it’s best to stay well away, to avoid getting squashed.” Well this is something that the Green Party of England and Wales don’t seem to understand. Let’s hope they do get it before they are well and truly sunk.

Someone called Toby Greene has apparently resigned from the party, helpfully leaving a lengthy explanation for his action, which appears on Bob from Brockley’s blog, here. He starts off with this:

“The crisis in the party is caused by several factors. The first is that the active membership is really very small - definitely less than 1000 people. In this situation, it is very easy for a relatively small interest group to hijack it for its own ends. This is what has happened with GreenLeft.”

So entryists are at the root of the problems. No surprise there then. And so he progresses, via John Gray, Freud and the Christian - Jewish nexus.

There’s clearly a big push on to win over left-wing opinion. At Liberal Conspiracy Ben White, author of the provocatively titled 'Israeli Apartheid: A Beginner's Guide' has this to add:

“Over the last year, Tel Aviv-based think tank The Reut Institute has offered a lot of advice to supporters of Israel in the West on how to respond to “the erosion in Israel’s diplomatic status” (aka ‘deligitimization‘), including a focus “on engaging the hearts and minds of liberal progressive elites”.”

“A recent report looked specifically at London saying “liberal and progressive left” voices are the ones “most effective” in shielding Israel. Reut urged Israel’s defenders to “substantively engage liberal and progressive circles” by “responding to their concerns and building personal relationships”.”

No-one on the site has challenged these quotes, or called their veracity into question.

Which takes on to the painful Maoist self-criticism exercise held at Greens Engage some 15 months ago, where Mira Vogel leads the inquisition; “Can we please stick to talking about Rupert’s actions, and their effects?” and Rupert Read gamely plays along until he becomes exhausted by his abject failure even to grasp the nature of the crime he has committed - encouraging people to read a Glad Atzmon piece - eventually disappearing, having managed to rope in his friend Adrian to try to help him out.. Come on now, feel sorry for the poor guy, he’s only a professional, paid philosopher who, so say, specialises in one of the most abstruse thinkers in the known universe!

“Rupert … Please do the right thing and write a further self-appraisal in which you reflect upon how antipathy against Zionism (as opposed to lucid criticism) can prejudice anti-Zionists and corner them with antisemitic thinkers. We will make sure it is the last thing people see on this post. It will of course be subject to criticism (analysis, I mean), but if it’s good it will draw a line under this episode.”

“Antipathy to Israel leaches out and hurts Jews again and again and again. And we have been trying for a long time now to get this phenomenon addressed in the organisations of which we are members, but it has not been addressed.”

Food for thought indeed.

Live by the Dictator, Die by the Dictator

While the Establishment eagerly hope for a quick return to their Business-as-Usual model, doing their usual rounds of hob-nobbing with the international elite, luxury hotels and the attendant business jamborees, trade fairs and arms sales, others, like Humanist on Yahoo, are asking the obvious question: "Do Foreign evacuees from Libya remind you of rats leaving a sinking ship?"

Seems like some are happy to take stolen money and goods, but don't like the consequences of their actions when the people they've trodden over to get that wealth start objecting.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Hokey Kokey Brighton and Hove

You put your cycle-lane in,
You take your cycle-lane out,
In, out, in, out,
Shake £2 million around …

The latest in the all too familiar saga of “must be seen to be doing something no matter how crap” traffic management by Authorities. In this case, Brighton and Hove is the guilty party, where the Tories had the largest number of councillors when the offending cycle lane was built not mujch more than two years ago.

And the cycle lane in question is not just any old cycle lane, oh no. BikeNews tells us that it “was completed in 2008 as the centrepiece of Brighton and Hove's successful bid to become a Cycle Demonstration Town, with £3m in government funding provided by Cycling England in the glory days of 2005. It is part of the infrastructure that won the Transport Authority of the Year award only last year”

“CTC and Bricycles, the local campaign group, are opposed to the plans. Both were also opposed to the original poor design of the bike lane, which is not built to Dutch-standards and, for many cyclists, has made cycling on this stretch of road even more dangerous than prior to the bike lane.” BikeBiz.

"Tony Green of Bricycle told road cc: “When instated, less than three years ago, the city council described this scheme as a state of the art Cycling Freeway, but now they think it is a blot on the landscape. The administration seems to have lost the plot and is behaving like a headless chicken.”"

Sho-called Shycling Shitties - among which Bristol seems to come a very poor place behind York - take note!

As if.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Blowing Bubbles

Hmm, how to keep house prices artificially high and at the same time save the whole market from seizing up. Yes, it’s business as usual in the Economics of the Impossible world we inhabit. Matt Griffith from PricedOut uncannily sums up pretty much exactly what I was thinking while hearing the dialogue of the deaf on Radio 4’s You and Yours today. Lots of people phoned in with perfectly cogent analyses - that basically the market is overpriced - only to have the idiotic presenter ignore all that and keep asking “oh, but how is it for you personally”. After a while it became obvious that not only did she not want to hear what they were saying, but that she believes they couldn’t possibly have anything useful to say because they are not “experts” - those same experts who have a vested interest in inflating the bubble.

Let’s just hope that Shapps and Co don’t try the Aussie wheeze of what Steve Keen calls “First Home Vendors Boost” ie using taxpayers money to keep prices high.

Price of Gold

Why is the price of everything going up and up? Could it be that the modern economic fantasy of perpetual motion growth is climaxing in its inevitable failure?

So, while the end-game lasts, why not stave off that nagging sense of futility by piling your gold ever higher and higher and paying off security guards to chase away any poor people who might get hungry and try to get a few crumbs off you, the filthy scrounging bastards!

Check out your investment ...

Yes, this is how the 'libertarians' 'real world' operates. Their sickness can only be cured by gold.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Ravilious Country

                Oak on our way to Halsdon NR

Easily attained from either Exeter or Barnstaple courtesy of taking a seat on Stagecoach bus 315, Dolton is a friendly sort of a place. Quiet, picturesque, it's only twenty minutes’ stroll down the lane at the feet of ‘mighty great hedges', richly stocked with even mightier great trees, to Halsdon nature reserve in the Torridge valley, where you might yet see an otter if you keep very quiet. Even now the countryside round here can sometimes still have a living feel, with real people in it, walking or working, the kind of thing James Ravilious recorded more eloquently than I, some thirty years ago.


                                                           Beech on our way to Beaford

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Is the Boat Rocking - or Sinking?

Demonstrations in Muslim majority lands against secular leaders who are widely seen as puppets of the West rarely have a happy outcome from the modern, western, pluralist democratic point of view - no matter how enthusiastically the ever-optimistic liberals have taken part in them. No trouble, they can always be 'eliminated' afterwards. Iran, where demonstrations began a whole year before the final overthrow, should be a textbook case.

A survey which should give liberals pause for thought before cheering demonstrations on, was conducted by the Pew Research Centre's Global Attitudes Project as recently as December 2010 (PDF here), which found that:

"At least three-quarters of Muslims in Egypt and Pakistan say they would favor making each of the following the law in their countries: stoning people who commit adultery, whippings and cutting off of hands for crimes like theft and robbery and the death penalty for those who leave the Muslim religion. Majorities of Muslims in Jordan and Nigeria also favor these ... punishments."