Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Please Speak Up


A main piece of news over here in the UK this past week has been the appearance (last Thursday evening) of the head of the British National Party - widely labeled as fascistic; the modern-day equivalent of Mosley's Blackshirts of the '30s - on a major current events programme on the (national carrier) BBC called Question Time. Nick Griffin was invited on because his party (a) is a legal one, and (b) won a couple of seats in the recent EU elections.* I'm sure you could hear the uproar even over in your part of the world. How could they give the fascists/racists/anti-Semitics the oxygen of publicity, etc etc. The Media section of the Guardian - the UK's foremost liberal broadsheet - had a feature article leading up to it headlined 'The right to be heard?'; ie, questioning such a 'right'. Right on its heels, columnist Ian Bell in The (Glasgow) Herald fumed about it in a column headed 'We cannot grant the BNP the rights it would not grant us'. (But that sort of thing is precisely the difference between 'us' and such authoritarians as Bell was ringing his tocsin in warning about...??)

In the event, Griffin got well shot down, both by the panel (including the nominal moderator) and the studio audience, and in the newspaper coverage afterwards (that I know of; plus I don't access TV much, to know how that media dealt with it). And perhaps too well shot down; eliciting no small amount of sympathy for his treatment, as the equivalent of a set-up. So, at least: everybody had their say. And isn't there a fair amount of value in that? Instead of 'polite society' having been able to rule the day, and keeping Griffin 'and his ilk' in the dark, where they belong?...

Two things.

One is a copy of a letter of mine that I happened to come across today, when I was looking to put a newspaper clipping into one of my files (read, more accurately: piles). I thumbed quickly through one such folder, trying to ascertain if it was the right file I was looking for, and noticed the letter amongst the main body of newspaper cuttings. Quickly scanning it, I ascertained that it was pertinent to this time and place, and prominent subject. Dating back to 2004, it was to a columnist in The Herald. I can't find the offending article itself right at this moment in time in that 'file' (insert smiley face here), but from my responding letter it is obvious what it was about in general. Reading my letter, my first thought was: Gee; did I write that? Not bad...anyway: herewith, for the sake of this blog's subject, and my contribution to the 'debate':

"Dear Ms McAlpine,

"As much as I normally appreciate your contributions in The Herald, I must admit I was a bit taken aback by your last column, of Thurs, 29 April [my letter is dated 3 May]. I didn't get off to a very good start with it from even before turning to the page it appeared on, when on the front page it was heralded, under your picture, with the notion: Should free speech be extended to Nazis?

"My first thought was, What is she on about? It is precisely like asking, Should free speech be extended to Communists? After all, they advocated the elimination of those who disagreed with them - and in the event, were responsible for more deaths in the 20th Century than the Nazis. So I turned to your article to find out what, precisely, your argument was.

"I must say I was disappointed in your thinking. For what they are worth, the following are some of my thoughts in response.

"(1) It is very dangerous when a society begins to be selective about what it will and will not allow to be expressed. That approach to the fundamental matter of free speech plays right into the hands of those authoritarians who would use the 'not in the national interest' rationale for shutting the citizenry up, ie, steps onto the slippery slope of censorship.

"(2) If people use terms like 'vermin' to describe immigrants - illegal immigrants or otherwise - then they will be turned down at the polling booth. That is the democratic way to go about such things. Know who and what you're dealing with, and it's out in the open, more easily capable of being dealt with.**

"As to this point of 'the democratic way' of going about this sort of thing: Free speech is not properly defined as being about the opportunity to talk about motherhood and apple pie. Surely a truly healthy, robust democracy can handle more than safe issues. What, exactly, is it that you are afraid of? I would support the notion that it is legitimate for the state to support parents in protecting their children from, say, images of vile depravity. But surely adults can be left free to sample the wares in the realm of ideas, and make their choices, not to be so coddled as to have their choices constricted for them by the state. I would far more trust the people than the state in these matters.

"If '(f)ree speech has its limits,' those limits would better be set well beyond where you have set them, Ms McAlpine. For the sake of a true democracy.

"It is the same thing with so-called hate speech laws, where the definition of 'incitement' is so loose that it could be used to drive a coach and horses through, and, eg, criticism of the state of Israel for its policies vis-a-vis the Palestinian issue could be (and already is) manipulated to be declared anti-Semitic, and because of such laws, be a chilling factor to the legitimate exercise of free speech. No. Give me a robust free speech any day, to the cowing of the citizenry by a too heavy-handed state, no matter how well-intentioned such cowing could appear to be - and to be sold as - on its surface.

"Have a little more trust in the democratic process, Ms McAlpine. For all our sakes.

"Yours sincerely, [etc]


"** Which is my answer, by the way, also to the point you raised to support your position; to wit: 'What about freedom of speech? Well, as Ken Livingstone has pointed out, we don't allow people to demonstrate in favour of paedophilia.' But we should. if they engage in the act, they will break the law. But words are not things. (If they were, a lot of things wouldn't be allowed to be said. And the world would be the poorer, for the ineffectual exercise in the sanitizing of living.) Until the law has been broken, democratic freedoms - civil rights - should prevail.

"If a cleric in this country clearly preaches jihad - clearing advocates death to the infidels, and unambiguously incites to violence - then he fairly comes under condemnation, and, depending on the wording of the law, under that as well. But I will get to a danger in all this in a moment; the danger of laws drawn too loosely, so that they are used beyond their legitimate application."

The other thing has to do with the simplistic 'take' on, widespread impression of, fascism. One of the writers of Letters to The Herald in the wake of the TV programme opined as to how, in balance, it was good that they had had Griffin on, because he hurt his position, by being "inarticulate", and like a hulking bully, and so forth. Well, let's take a closer look at these 'bullies'.

And that closer look came to me, in timely fashion, this week, in the pages of a magazine that I subscribe to out of the U.S.. Titled The New American, it is the journalistic arm of the John Birch Society; itself often castigated as being 'fascist', but which only shows how ill-defined words can be, because it is anything but - is a fierce opponent of both fascism and socialism/communism. (It has a particular 'conservative' perspective, particularly on economic and social issues; but it does not believe in using the state to impose those perspectives on the citizenry. At least, not true blue Birchers.) This particular issue was a back one, which just came this week with a number of others, the original mailings of which somehow fell foul of the postal system between the U.S. and me. (Interestingly enough, it's not the first time this has happened with this particular journal. I make no other observation than that.) I decided to glance through this particular issue last night (as my bedtime reading, after my usual wade through all my emails, and their internet links) as it was the oldest of the lot (April 13), and because it had an interesting cover, that story being about 'Creating ''Wealth"'. Before getting to that story ('The Federal Reserve's ability to create money out of thin air and to manipulate the value of the dollar gives it ultimate control over the purse strings of every American household'), I glanced at the 'Inside Track' section, bullet points of main stories of the period. How fitting to the subject of this blog, starting to form in my head. One of those headers:

'Public-private Partnerships Based on Fascist Economic Model'

It likens what is going on in our day and age to what various players tried on in the '30s and '40s.***

This, coupled with a video-tape I listened to last evening, from Brasscheck TV (of a few days ago, that I was just getting around to); a radio interview with an economist from Canada, one Prof. Michel Chossudovsky, who outlined the scam going on in America, whereby the banks receiving bailout money from the federal government (read: the taxpayers) were not using it to lend to capital-starved businesses, were rather using it to buy the very same businesses they'd helped bankrupt - or forced down the stock price of - by turning off their credit lines, in a circular process of diabolical initiative. Which includes driving the American government into bankruptcy as well, in order for the power elite behind the whole scenario to privatize the whole shebang. In order to create private toll highways, for example. (My extrapolation from here:) So that they can move truckloads of goods from Mexico to Canada on private highway corridors - a feature of the mooted North American Union; with its single currency, the Amero - without having to deal with the pesky matter of democracy, in the form of state and federal policies, from the days of the former United States of America.

The People. Getting in the way of The Plan.

My point with all this? Briefly put: We seem to prefer our thugs looking all smart and nice, in their expensive suits, to thugs we might meet in the street.

Men - and women - in The City, rather than in the cities.

Sweet. And ugly. And time to take back our destiny in our own hands. Out of those of our erstwhile keepers. Keeping us as long as we behave ourselves. Like nice little sheeple. Whose every move - in our cars, on the internet, in purchases - is being monitored. As the potential 'domestic extremists' that we all are.

The former presumption of innocence having been tossed aside like the product of an earlier day. Pre 1984, as it were.

As I say: Sweet. And ugly. As ugly as the image of a boot stamping on humanity's face.

Before the inevitable rising up.

People being what they are.

And what is that?

It has been well expressed in the words of a modern 'motivational speaker' thusly: as 'spiritual beings having a human experience".

Who are not going to take kindly to erstwhile masters treating them like anything less.

For much longer.

P.S. As for the positions, and character assassination, of Nick Griffin: A number of commentators have been willing to cede him a point on the issue of immigration, in that it has not been handled sensitively enough. But they all gang up on him on his purported anti-Semitism. For example, an interviewer for something called 5 Live and BBC1's Sunday morning debate show The Big Question, was quoted in the Guardian's Media article thusly: "If a mainstream politician had described the holocaust as the 'holocon' or listed the Jews in the media...they would be hammered." The Big Question, indeed...

On this subject, of such as censorship, and Things You Can't Say, I append a recent letter of mine to the Guardian; whose Letters editor chose not to print it, but I think the point is pertinent to this 'discussion':

"Dear Editor,

"Jonathan Freedland voices an admirable sentiment in his column on the Holocaust: "Surely, by any moral standard, we cannot let this assault on historical truth stand" (I knew the day of Holocaust 'debate' would come. Just not in my lifetime, Comment, 21 October). And that is precisely why the meme of The Six Million must not be allowed to continue to stand.

" Even some honest israeli historians have admitted that that is a grossly inflated number, dating from the early 1900s when the Zionists were trying to generate support in Europe for a homeland for the Jews (Madagascar was a mooted site, for a time), and resorted to making their case with a little fudging of the facts; and whereby emigration was treated as the equivalent of extermination. That precise figure was used on the cover of a particular publication at the time (1916).

"Were Jews as a class of persons targeted for elimination by the Nazis? That would appear to be the case. But we're really never going to make substantial headway in the Israeli-Palestinian standoff that is threatening the world with its nastiness until both sides will give way to a more sober assessment of the matter, based on truth. Not propaganda.

"If that means questioning the sacred cow of 'six million' and putting it aside, then that's what it means. Let's get that matter over with, so that we can get to more substantive issues. Precisely in the spirit of what Rabbi Michael Lerner asks for, in the same Comments section, regarding the Goldstone report to the UN. And precisely in the spirit of what Jonathan Freedland invokes in his column.

"Time's a'wasting, for solid progress to be made towards resolution of this conflict. And that requires movement - heartfelt, authentic movement - on both sides.

"Yours sincerely, [etc.]

I am saying that it's not good enough simply to smear people like Nick Griffin for using the term 'holocon' when he has a point (just as he has with poorly integrated 'immigration'). Not Holocaust denial; but Holocaust revisionism. And so too do the Muslims who question particular facts about it that have come down to us all as if written in stone; to beat us over the head with, over and over. Until the Zionists have managed to squeeze millions of reparations dollars out of it.

'It': the Holocaust. A very big business. And shame, for those who are using so much actual suffering to build a mountain on. To further their ends.

The same way that tyrants have acted, down through the ages.

Means and ends.

As people are used, over and over, as mere means, to further the ends of powerful elites.

Like using the people's tax monies against them, and THEIR interests.

And getting the people to point to people like Nick Griffin as the culprits in their lives...

Clever, scheming, venal hypocrites.

Who will be the death of us yet.

Unless we awaken from the slumber they have imposed on us - with bread and circuses.

And demolish the matrix.

Which means, in essence: the money system.

As it is.

And substitute it with a simple system of credits and debits.

As we go about creating community on the planet.

The whole planet.

As One.

Just not the one that the Bilderbergers, and Council on Foreign Relations, and that whole crowd of movers and shakers are intending. And intending to rule. Their way.

Which doesn't happen to be the Way of The People.

And the Spirit with which we are infused.

All of us.

Including them.

Lost souls that they are.

For a time.

To serve a purpose.

A personal purpose, to them, and their pilgrim's progress.

And to us.

To give us choices.

May we choose well, in this special time.

This time of Ascension.

Or not.

Your choice.


* So is and has 'my' party, UKIP - United Kingdom Independence Party; but it doesn't have the same notoriety as the BNP, is not newsworthy enough. More's the pity. It is the only political party - save some gesturing by the Conservatives - that is clearly, unequivocally against British immersion into the EU Superstate aborning, whereby the REAL fascists will gain control over all aspects of the former independent nations of Europe. All for a worthy cause, of course. The purported cause of peace in Europe, after centuries of nationalistic conflict. But by the means of the peace of servitude. But not to get too far off onto a tangent...

*** Another article in the section dealt with: 'CFR Corporate Members Get Lion's Share of Bailout Funds'. That's as in the Council of Foreign Relations. You will have heard of that organization. David Rockefeller; the New World Order, and so forth. The Establishment, wanting to rule the world their way. Which is not The People's way, I can assure you.


Brasscheck TV audio: Kpfa, Bonnie Faulkner. "Grand theft in broad daylight: The great banking scam.'


Paul said...

Racism begins with our families, parents, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, grandparents, people we admire, respect and love.

However, as we grow and mature we come to the realization that what we were told by our family when we were children were slanted lies base on their prejudices. We realize that most people are like ourselves and not so different and want the same things, like a home, steady work, a Medicare plan and schools for our children (if you travel you will see this). We realize that most people are of good hearts and goodwill.

This reminds me of a parable from the good book where a Levite and Priest come upon a man who fell among thieves and they both individually passed by and didn’t stop to help him.

Finally a man of another race came by, he got down from his beast, decided not to be compassionate by proxy and got down with the injured man, administered first aid, and helped the man in need.

Jesus ended up saying, this was the good man, this was the great man, because he had the capacity to project the “I” into the “thou,” and to be concerned about his fellow man.

You see, the Levite and the Priest were afraid, they asked themselves, “If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?”

But then the Good Samaritan came by. And he reversed the question: “If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”

That’s the question before us. The question is not, “If I stop to help our fellow man (immigrant) in need, what will happen to me?” The question is, “If I do not stop to help our fellow man, what will happen to him or her?” That’s the question.

This current climate of blaming others for our woes is not new. We have had this before and we have conquered it.

Remember “Evil flourishes when good men (and women) do nothing”. Raise your voices with those of us who believe we are equal and we can win this battle again.

Stan said...

Well put, Paul.

Thanks for speaking up.