Eton College timetable

A day of Eton College’s timetable for sixth-formers has been leaked.

8-30: Markets review: Pupils review yesterday’s stock exchange and discuss their investments.  The pupil who had the most lucrative day receives ten hectares of land stolen from an indigenous farmer in Africa, Asia or South America.

9-30: English literature: Uproarious laughter abounds as pupils recite their favourite passages from the novels of Charles Dickens.

10-10: Geography: Arable land in the Cayman Islands.

11-00: Psychology: As part of the Deception course guest speaker and alumnus David Cameron describes skills needed to evade, obfuscate and lie including a demonstration accompanied by alumnus Douglas Murray role-playing as a journalist.

12-15: Lunch, followed by a nap.

1-00: Business skills (tax): Practical lesson in which pupils, as owners of imaginary businesses in a mock scenario, use skills learnt earlier in the course to avoid as much tax as possible in a financial year.  Pupils who pay more than 1% tax have to wear the uniform of a public service employee for the remainder of the day, including the shoes.

2-45: History: From Benito Mussolini to Shanker Singham – Libertarianism’s greatest achievers.

3-45: Tea, followed by a nap.

4-15: Careers advice: Guidance on how to assume a lucrative role in politics, law, business or writing without the necessity of knowledge or hard work.

5-15: Laundry: Pupils assist the college’s finance team with book-keeping.

6-00: Nap.

Eton College timetable

Labour Future Candidates Programme

On Thursday 14th October 2021 successful applicants for Labour’s Future Candidates Programme (to be trained as potential Labour parliamentary candidates) were notified of their acceptance onto the programme.  They acknowledged their success with similarly worded and similarly structured social media messages that were sent at approximately the same time; each message included the same drawing (of a generic town hall frontage).  None of the messages included any political comments.

Successful candidates included serving councillors, a few longstanding Labour members and some who were not previously members of Labour.

According to Labour our aim is to have a trained cohort of individuals who reflect the full diversity of our society, who understand what it means to stand for the Labour Party and what is expected of a Labour Party Parliamentary candidate at the next General Election, and who understand the lives of those they are seeking to represent.” Why you can be a Future Candidate

Successful applicants included the following

David Taylor: On 29th September 2021, two weeks before his application to be part of Future Candidates programme was accepted, he said, referring to Keir Starmer,

what a difference it makes to have to have a leader of integrity in this country.” 

That comment was made a few days after Starmer abandoned all the pledges he made during the Labour leadership campaign in 2020. 

Taylor is a keen supporter of NATO military occupation of other countries.  On 15th August 2021, responding to Zarah Sultana’s accurate analysis that “permanent foreign military occupations can never be the basis for the development of democratic societies.  They are the negation of popular sovereignty, and by definition strangle democracy.  Anyone arguing otherwise is effectively defending colonial rule” he said

even if they [a government] were coming to power through elections, if that leads to massive persecution of minorities or entire genders, how can that be legitimate either?  This person [Sultana] should not be in the Labour Party let alone an MP.” 

That is, Taylor thinks anyone who opposes UK military occupation of another country should be barred from being a UK MP. 

He attacks Jeremy Corbyn relentlessly for the latter’s desire for peaceful solutions to conflicts; Taylor prefers the bomb and/or invade strategy, or “humanitarian intervention.”

His hatred of socialists encourages him to throw libellous accusations around, particularly at anyone who opposes British militarism.  On 13th December 2019 he called Labour’s front bench

this disgusting band of genocide deniers and anti-Semitism enablers.”

He supported Gerard Coyne in the Unite General Secretary election.  Responding to a comment on Cuba by outgoing General Secretary Len McCluskey Taylor said

the Cuban regime doesn’t allow free trade unions. Vote for Gerard Coyne.” 

He is aware that, as a communist country with state-run industries, Cuba has very strong trade unions but the “free” trade unions that Taylor said were absent would be “free” in the right-wing pro-capitalist sense. 

On August 9th 2015 he displayed his contempt for democracy.

I welcome growing calls to suspend Labour leadership contest.  Wrong to go ahead when Party has no idea who new voters are.” 

On 9th September 2020 he demanded that any Labour member who expresses support for Cuba or Venezuela should be expelled from the party. 

[New code of conduct for NEC members] should include expulsion for anyone tweeting in support of / appearing at events celebrating dictatorial regimes e.g. Iran, Cuba, Venezuela.

and on 18th March 2021 he claimed Venezuela is not a democracy.  He objected to the decision by the people of Bolivia to vote for the re-election of Evo Morales.

Phil Brickell: Brickell is a “convenor” for right-wing Labour To Win led by Luke Akehurst.  Akehurst is a keen supporter of Saudi carpet-bombing of Yemeni civilians and was an employee of BICOM. 

In The road to No 10 runs through Greater Manchester Brickell claimed

at Labour to Win, we will champion a welcoming, transparent party that supports our common goals,”

but Labour To Win said it “provides a space in which old members, new members, rejoiners and those let down by Jeremy Corbyn can find support and encouragement.”

In a reply on 17th November 2020 to Young Labour Chair Jess Barnard he complained that

your call for unity rings empty when your recently published Labour List article failed to once criticise the Tories but engaged in repeated attacks on the shadow front bench.  Take the fight to the government, not our own side.”

However, Brickell does not abide by his instruction himself and his public statements include a lot of criticism, denigration and haughty dismissal of Labour members and activists who do not share his political views.

When Labour MPs, councillors or activists express support for Jeremy Corbyn Brickell responds habitually by asking whether the person supports the ECHR report “in full.”

For example, 2nd November 2020 in reply to Labour MP Mary Kelly Foy,

do you accept the EHRC’s findings & recommendations in full?  If not, why?”

and 30th October 2020 in reply to former Labour MP Laura Pidcock,

why won’t Corbyn accept in full the findings & recommendations in the EHRC’s report?  And do you accept them?”

On 25th May 2021 he asked

when was it acceptable [for Jeremy Corbyn] to share a platform with Kerry-Anne Mendoza from the Canary?”

On 17th July 2021 he excused Labour’s failure to publish the Forde report and claimed legal reasons prevented its publication.

Forde inquiry is independent of the party & dependent on ongoing ICO investigations into the party from 2015-20.  Labour has no say over it.”

But, The Forde inquiry is not independent of Labour and ICO investigations began after the report could have been published.

He excused Labour’s decision to not vote against Tories’ Covert Human Intelligence Sources Bill.

The strategy on CHIS Bill was to abstain at 2nd reading, seek to amend at committee stage then vote against at 3rd reading.”

There is no logic to Brickell’s explanation.

On 18th November 2020 he dismissed Andrew Scattergood’s complaint that Labour party branches and CLPs are not being allowed to discuss motions about Corbyn’s suspension.

He [Scattergood] hasn’t digested the content in the EHRC report around the party’s liability for the actions of its agents ie. denying unlawful acts.”

On the same issue, on 24th of the same month, he said

unlawful acts, agents of the party, ongoing EHRC report response, pending litigation.  Young Labour’s Chair just doesn’t get it.  There’s no way an official party organ should be discussing & tweeting about Corbyn’s case.  Doing so could incur further legal liability for Labour.”

But, there are absolutely no legal implications for Labour if its members discuss Corbyn’s suspension.  The “party’s liability” is a political decision by Starmer and his colleagues.  No court judgement has occurred that imposed any “liability” on Labour in relation to the ECHR report.  There is no “pending litigation.”  Incoherent threats from complainants are not “pending litigation.”

On 20th June 2020, when discussing Labour Together’s report on Labour’s loss at 2019 general election, Brickell complained that the report did not mention

electoral concerns over foreign & defence policy positions associated with him [Corbyn].”

The report didn’t mention such concerns because there were none.  Most people are not bomb-loving imperialists like Labour To Win.  In the same statement he claimed voters yelled “IRA” and “Hamas” at him when he was campaigning for that election.  That invention was just a facet of Labour To Win’s keenness for war.

Despite being a “convenor” for Labour To Win he called himself a “grassroots member.”

He is opposed to Jewish Voice For Labour, that describes itself as “a network for Jewish members of the Labour Party.”  On 14th December 2020 he said

JVL – no thanks.”

Adam Thompson: Thompson has never stated whether or not he is a socialist.  In his blog he said

I am known locally for my ability to provide reason and measured debate; I am often able to facilitate consensus between people with differing opinions.”  

In On the general election and the Labour leadership he said

I’ve found myself backing the same candidate [Lisa Nandy] as friends with whom I never agree with on policy positions, representing all aspects of the Labour party.  I have staunch hardcore socialist friends backing Lisa, and I have proud centrist friends backing Lisa.” 

Nandy received 7% of the vote.

He said he voted for Jeremy Corbyn in the 2015 leadership election.

Abdi Duale: Duale displayed the narrowness of his preferred vision of Labour’s appeal on 30th September 2021 with an insult aimed at people who supported Jeremy Corbyn.

The irony of people who supported Jeremy Corbyn’s failed leadership for five years lecturing Keir on electability, will never cease to amaze me.  They clearly have the self awareness of a shellfish.”

His warped view of Corbyn’s leadership was a contrast to his delusional appreciation of Starmer.  The day before the above comment he said

this is an excellent speech by Keir Starmer, it oozes competence and confidence.  It’s also a clear change from five years of incompetence,”

he called people who heckled Starmer during his speech

absolutely rotten beings, the sooner we show them the door, the better,”

and he described Momentum as “a horrible bunch.”

Childlike remarks are all that Duale has and they are expressed with complete insincerity and accompanied by bland repetition of slogans.

He is very keen for socialists to be ejected from Labour.  On 17th July 2021 he was pleased that several groups in Labour, including Resist and Socialist Appeal, were to be proscribed by Starmer.

Great news, the first of many groups I hope.”

He added that he hoped socialist MPs would be ejected as well.

Kick out any Labour MPs who share a platform with them too.”

Socialist MP Zarah Sultana is a popular target for Labour’s right and Duale did not forget to include her among recipients of his witlessness.  On 12th October 2021 he demanded that she should no longer have the Labour whip because she offered support to socialist Irish novellist Sally Rooney.

Imagine supporting the boycott of the Hebrew language.  Completely bigoted and another reason the whip should be removed.”

There are several problems (lies) with Duale’s comment.  Rooney has not boycotted the Hebrew language and she is happy for her book to be translated into Hebrew.  He knows that.  He lied knowingly.  His description of Rooney as “bigoted” is libel.  He said Sultana’s support was “another reason” for action to be taken against her.  The other “reasons” could be any of her socialist comments or analyses.

On 14th August 2021 during the leadership election for Unite he said that right-wing candidate “Gerard [Coyne] has been nothing short of an inspiration.”

Vince Barry-Stanners: In December 2020 during the Labour leadership campaign he said

Starmerism is a return to a Labour Party which is proud to say it’s patriotic.  Britain is a ‘small c’ conservative country which favours gradual progress [rather] than system overhaul.” 

Reacting to Starmer’s 2021 conference speech Barry-Stanners said

I’m thoroughly impressed.  It’s clear that Labour is once again under patriotic, progressive leadership.” 

He didn’t explain why he thinks leadership needs to be “patriotic.”  

Speaking about the withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan he said

at a time when the west is facing an expansionist Russia and an emboldened China, it is crucial that we defend our values.” 

He did not give examples of any “expansionism” or “emboldenment” or why he thinks such behaviour by Russia or China, if true, is anything to do with the UK.  The phrase “our values,” expressed in combat to Russian or Chinese “values,” was a straightforward xenophobic remark. 

In 2017 he admitted he had personal friends who vote Conservative.”

Josh Tapper: After failing to achieve sufficient ‘A’ level grades for a university place Tapper became a reality TV “star” and used his resultant unearned fame to get a civil service apprenticeship with the Tory government in 2017 and later a job as Theresa May’s assistant campaign manager. 

He said of his time working for the Tories that

you feel you’re doing something that has a purpose to it, something that matters.  You feel like what you’re doing is going to make a difference to people’s lives.” 

Two years later he moved to think-tank Demos as Communications Officer. 

In June 2021 he was “elected” as Communications Officer for Hendon Constituency Labour Party (CLP) after Labour had suspended sitting socialist members of the CLP.

Joanne Harding: Since Jeremy Corbyn’s election as Labour leader in 2015 Harding’s pastime is petulant, snide comments directed at him and at his supporters.  None of the comments have facts, substance or analysis. 

For example, (14th July 2016)

Corbyn’s uselessness has lost its charm

and (30th October 2020)

He loves the adoration, he’s no leader just a petty man desperate for the ‘Oh, Jeremy Corbyn’.” 

On 20th May 2021 she mocked Corbyn’s opposition to antisemitic manipulation of the cover of a book by acclaimed childrens’ author Michael Rosen, a Corbyn supporter. 

On NHS, she said on 4th August 2016

I did suggest to Jeremy Corbyn as a National Policy Forum representative that we can’t be that purist and rule out 3rd sector [privateers].” 

She was a member of Progress and wrote an article for it on 23rd February 2017 in which she said

I was disappointed, to say the least, when Labour’s knee-jerk reaction was to describe Tory ‘sustainability and transformation plans’ as ‘a dagger pointed at the heart of the NHS’ to be resisted and opposed.” 

Ella Rose: Rose worked at a country’s embassy in London as Public Affairs Officer between September 2015 and August 2016.  She admitted in an interview that during her time at the embassy and afterward she worked with Shai Masot, an employee of the embassy, who was later expelled from UK for spying. 

In the same interview she issued an extreme threat of violence against Labour party member Jackie Walker.

I saw Jackie Walker on Saturday and thought, you know what, I could take her, she’s like 5’2 and tiny.  That’s why I can take Jackie Walker.  Krav Maga training (military hand-to-hand combat technique).  I’m not bad at it.  If it came to it I would win, that’s all I really care about.” 

Jackie Walker is a socialist and a campaigner against racism.

Keir Mather: Mather’s definition of “morals” appears to be awry.  In a response on 18th July 2016 to Dianne Abbott’s criticism of John Woodcock’s enthusiasm for Trident nuclear missiles Mather claimed Woodcock’s stance was a question of morals and shouldn’t be for political point scoring.”

Mather didn’t know that Woodcock would resign from Labour party in 2018 to avoid an investigation into an accusation of inappropriate sexual behaviour, that Woodcock would continue as an “independent” MP rather than call a by-election, thus stealing a parliamentary seat from voters, that Woodcock would abstain in a vote of confidence in prime minister Theresa May in 2019, that Woodcock would accept a job as “special envoy” for the Tory government before the next general election, that in that election (2019) Woodcock would campaign for the Tories, that Woodcock would accept a peerage from Boris Johnson in 2020, and that Woodcock would be appointed “independent adviser on political violence and disruption” by the Tories in 2021 to lead an investigation into the activities of Extinction Rebellion and Black Lives Matter.

On 11th April 2018 Mather called novellist and socialist Ken Loach a “bigoted white old man” and claimed Loach “supported racists” because he attended an event with Jackie Walker.

Jackie Walker is a socialist and a campaigner against racism.

On 24th April 2018 Mather said

God. I. Am. Sick. Of. Jeremy. Corbyn.”

Matt Ward: Ward heartily disapproved of people choosing to join Labour to support Jeremy Corbyn. 

On 26th June 2016 he said 

I hope when we have this leadership contest [2016 contest between Corbyn and Owen Smith], the £3 vote isn’t a bloody option

and added

they brought a vote.  Where were these new members come election time [2015 general election]?”

He seemed to fail to understand that new members joined Labour because Corbyn was leader; he was not the leader at the previous election.

Contradicting himself, a week later on 5th July Ward opined that

the truth is we don’t know how many [new members] are joining to support Jeremy or how many are joining to get rid of him.”

Ward was an active supporter of ice-cream salesman Owen Smith during the campaign for the pointless leadership contest in 2016.  His support for Smith consisted of factless, contentless, snide comments, punctuated by blatant lies including

Jeremy Corbyn is the Tories greatest asset, with him as leader we will take a serious beating,”
Corbyn talks like he’s already won this contest.  Every phone bank I have done he’s behind,”
people that voted for Corbyn last year are now backing Owen.  Not individuals but families!  Working class folk backing a leader for government,”
and “we now have a challenge that I am confident we will win.  Corbyn cannot be leader when he can’t hold the govt to account.”

On 8th September 2016 he claimed

I’ve not had one member of the public say they want or trust Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister.”

Corbyn won the contest comfortably despite a plethora of underhand tactics by Iain McNicol designed to disenfranchise voters.

Wards’ reaction to the appointment of Dianne Abbott as shadow Home Secretary was a photo of a celebrity with his head in his hand.

As a contrast, on 8th August 2016 he described Mike Gapes as a “dedicated Labour MP” in a published statement that he later deleted.  Gapes left Labour in 2019 to be one of the co-founders of Change UK but he did not stand for re-election in a by-election and, thus, stole his parliamentary seat from the voters.

Graham Whitham: Sarcasm is Trafford councillor Whitham’s favourite mode of communication and he never supports his sarcastic remarks with ideas, policies or proposals of his own.

He chose to blame the result of the 2016 EU referendum on Jeremy Corbyn and, afterward, he offered only terse dismissals of anything the latter said or did.  A comment by Whitham on 12th July 2016, a few weeks after the referendum, set the tone of his debating skills.

it saddens me that I already know that Corbyn & team have no strategy for overcoming it [Brexit] & won’t attempt to.

On the following day he said

I’ve not heard much in the way of policy from Corbyn to be honest.  Just rhetoric.”

On 20th January 2017 he agreed with former Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron who accused Corbyn of “lamely giving up over Brexit.”

Jasmin Beckett: In 2016 in an election for Young Labour representative on Labour’s NEC Beckett asked her supporters to post social media messages that repeated false allegations against another candidate.  She asked that, in any such messages, logos or “twibbons,” that identified the poster as a Beckett supporter, should not be included.  She won the election by a single vote.  She made accusations of irregularities in the election as a ruse to distract from what she and her supporters had done. 

Up to 2019 general election she made more accusations of a variety of wrongdoings by Labour against her and her political colleagues, both to denigrate socialists in Labour and to acquire media coverage for herself. 

On Sky News on 17th June 2018 she said she and some colleagues from centrist lobby group Our Future, Our Choice were physically ejected from a Labour Live event after they unfurled a banner and chanted slogans to disrupt a speech by Jeremy Corbyn.  Photographic, video and eye-witness accounts showed that her claim was a lie.  Included in her lie was a claim that journalist Kevin Schofield witnessed what happened; Schofield was not at the event. 

As a response to Emily Thornberry’s reasonable criticism of military action against protesters wherein Thornberry described “vicious and utterly avoidable slaughter” Beckett said

farcical and uninformed response to the deaths at the border.  Such a statement plays into the hands of Hamas.”

Ryan Wain: Wain is Political Director of Tony Blair Institute.  That is all you need to know about him.

Future parliamentary candidates
All the above are expected to become parliamentary candidates in the future.  The dual policy of ejecting socialists and promoting right-wingers is a key part of Starmer’s strategy.

Labour Future Candidates Programme

Katharine Birbalsingh, chair of Social Mobility Commission

Social mobility, the opportunity to succeed (financially or otherwise) regardless of inherited or family wealth, requires active assistance by governments.

In UK such assistance is absent and deliberately placed obstacles prevent people from attaining social mobility. 

For people in late teens/early twenties obstacles to social mobility include

  • Prohibitive cost of university education: Initial debt can be as high as £60,000 and the debt rises over time due to extortionate interest rates
  • Lack of financial support for ‘A’ level students
  • Paucity of useful apprenticeships
  • Low paid and insecure entry-level employment for school leavers
  • High rents preventing young people from moving out of parental home for work
  • Vicious regime of benefit-snatching by DWP adding to income insecurity

For people a little older their social mobility is hampered greatly by near impossibility of obtaining a mortgage to buy a house coupled with difficulty in saving money due to high cost of living, particularly cost of rent, and by a succession of employment law changes that made jobs and salaries much less secure.

The Tory government couldn’t care less about social mobility and it is ideologically bound to a philosophy of objecting to helping anyone except their wealthiest friends and business colleagues.  

EtonCollege
Eton College, Tories’ centre for social mobility

An oft-used tactic by free-racketeer governments is to pretend to want to do something as a ruse to swallow up genuine attempts by others to achieve it.  Such a government creates a quango or announces a project as a means of distracting supporters of the stated aims of the quango or project and wasting their time and energies so that they are inhibited in actually pursuing the aims. 

An example of the above is Tories’ alleged “levelling up” agenda.  This project occupies space in newspapers and on TV and radio and in debates in House Of Commons and elsewhere.  People who are genuinely committed to addressing disparity in levels of livelihoods or quality of life throughout Britain are unable to proceed without being dragged into spurious discussion of the government’s fictitious “levelling up” agenda.

Part of this agenda is the existence of Tories’ Social Mobility Commission.  It is absurd that the creators of obstacles to social mobility need a commission to explain to them what is needed to improve social mobility.  The commission is another ruse.

A new chair of Social Mobility Commission was announced on Sunday 10th October 2021.  Attributes needed by the Tories for the chair of their ruse included

  • Devout conservatism
  • Ingrained opposition to knowledge
  • Indifference to facts and to veracity
  • Sufficiently unintelligent to be bereft of self-awareness 
  • Haughty disdain for poor people
  • Demonstrable commitment to libertarian extremism
  • Reliable political connections

Katharine Birbalsingh
Tories chose Katharine Birbalsingh, founder (and self-appointed head teacher) of Michaela Community School, Wembley, London, as the new chair.  The school is a “free school” and so operates outside of elected administrative control despite being funded wholly publicly.

Birbalsingh’s public comments (see examples below), including a disgusting speech at 2010 Tory party conference that led to the end of her career as a teacher, and methods used at the school showed repeatedly her unfitness to hold any public position of control, power or decision-making.

Similarities between her and multi-disgraced grifting libertarian Toby Young extend beyond their detachment from reality and their dislike of people.  He was also appointed to a Tory government con quango, Office For Students, although he was removed quickly due to his previous comments on genetics, and he also stuck his destructive nose into education via an administrative position in a chain of “academies.” 

In 2012 Young claimed he encouraged Birbalsingh to start her own “free school.”  He said “I think that she’s an immensely capable person and she should be setting up a free school of her own.  It’s what she’s planning to do.  If I can give her any help I certainly will.  I am a huge fan.” Young in Evening Standard

Nine years later he declared “the appointment of Katharine Birbalsingh as Chair of the Social Mobility Commission is inspired.” Young comment

Professional grifting libertarian Calvin Robinson (GB News, Policy Exchange, British Monarchists Society, The Brexit Party parliamentary candidate, Defund The BBC, Vote Leave) was a governor at Michaela Community School.

After accepting the chair of Social Mobility Commission Birbalsingh admitted that “the new role is only a few days a month!” Birbalsingh comment.  That admission revealed several aspects of the job:

  1. Social Mobility Commission is not a serious endeavour
  2. Birbalsingh has neither the work ethic nor the skills to do the job
  3. Her appointment is a financial reward (at tax-payers’ expense) for her promotion of libertarian philosophy
  4. Her main duties are ill-informed media presentation of alleged Social Mobility Commission intent

Examples of Birbalsingh and Michaela Community School behaviour and remarks
On 10th November 2019 Birbalsingh published a statement, aimed at parents, that asserted “if child says teacher is being racist, back the teacher.  Whatever the child says, back the teacher.  If you don’t, you are letting the child down and allowing them to play you for a fool.  Always back the teacher in front of your child.  That’s my advice to parents.  You can take it or leave it.  Up to you.”

There are several obvious problems with her instruction above.  Racism in any school needs to be dealt with strongly.  To propagate a policy of disbelief in an accusation of racism, as Birbalsingh did, is deeply disturbing.  Her demand that parents shouldn’t believe their children because they “play you like a fool” revealed her mistrust of the pupils at the school and her low opinion of the parents.

On sexual assault Birbalsingh has a similar dismissive attitude.  As part of a response to a survey in Guardian on sexual assault in schools she said “this nonsense doesn’t happen with us.  Our boys would never treat our girls like that.  It just wouldn’t happen.” Guardian 4th April 2021

The day after the Guardian article she at first denied sexual assault could occur at Michaela, before backtracking slightly.

Our kids, boys and girls, cannot and would not do a million things other kids do elsewhere.”
A culture of absolute respect and teachers who are 100% supported.  It can’t happen.  Not at Michaela.  Outside the gates is another matter of course.”
Yes, anything is possible.  We could also have a terrorist attack at school.  But it is highly unlikely.  We had a fight once many years ago.  So yes, it is possible.  But it happens once every seven years.” 

The following day Birbalsingh’s composure dissipated.

Can we all drop this please?  It is such a silly conversation!  Just stop talking about it.  It is absurd, pedantic and silly.  They can think what they like!  Just leave it!”
[This conversation] has gone beyond silly.”
Pedantry.”

The final word “pedantry” responded to references to her switch from “it can’t happen” to “yes, it is possible.”

Glib denial and panicked attempts at shutdown, on an issue as serious as sexual assault in schools, should be a bright red flag regarding Birbalsingh’s suitability to be working in education.

Michaela’s rules are numerous and precise.  There exists a lunch scam whereby “all pupils attend family lunch daily.  There are no exceptions.  There are no packed lunches at MichaelaNo food or drink is to be brought on to the school site.  The school provides a morning snack for all pupils as well as a two course lunch.” Michaela general information

Parents are charged £2.90 per day for the “family lunch” and “morning snack” which has to be paid in advance in half-termly segments (almost £100 each).  Note that bringing in a packed lunch is not allowed.

If parents do not pay on time then their child is isolated physically from other pupils at lunchtime and fed only a sandwich and a piece of fruit for lunch.  One parent received this letter from the school:

The deadline for this term’s lunch payment was 1st June 2016.  You are currently £75 overdue.  If this full amount is not received within this week your child will be placed into Lunch isolation.  They will receive a sandwich and a piece of fruit only.  Only when the outstanding sum is paid in full will they be allowed to eat lunch with their classmates.”

It is pertinent to remember that the school is not a privately-funded school; its funding comes from the government.  Forcing parents to pay extortionate prices for school lunch while banning packed lunches is a straightforward scam.  Isolating children from their friends at lunchtime is straightforward cruelty.

There is a long paper on the school’s website on Whistle-Blowing Policy and Procedure that describes the processes the school uses to deter whistle-blowing by staff including the threat of disciplinary action if the school decides a complaint is invalid. 

A single sentence in the paper mentions the legal right of employees to use the assistance of a trades’ union.

Michaela Community School does not recognise trade unions.”

Not only is such a stance illegal, it was written in the context of a description of whistle-blowing procedure.  

Inculcation of low-thought nationalism is a dominant feature of the education that Birbalsingh’s school enforces.  It includes forced singing of God Save The Queen, a British Union flag flying permanently and forcing pupils to say “our country” rather than “this country” when talking about the UK.

Michaela teacher Mike Taylor said “we believe that if a pupil doesn’t see themselves as part of this country they will never truly succeed.”  His comment is in the context of the majority of Michaela’s pupils having at least one parent born outside the UK.  When he said “part of this country” he meant in agreement with a specific political perspective of the UK.

In an interview with Express on 13th April 2019 Birbalsingh said

we believe in Queen and country.  We sing God Save The Queen all together in assembly.  The reason for that is we believe in being British.  We believe, whatever colour you are, whatever class you are, we are all British and we’re all one big family.  I know how important it is for our children, especially children in the inner city, to feel like they belong.  Because if they don’t feel British we are all in trouble, they won’t succeed, they’re in trouble, but we are all in trouble because you can’t have a country that succeeds when half the people don’t feel they’re part of the country.” Express

She claimed the reason why “people don’t feel they’re part of the country” is because they are not blindly nationalistic enough rather than due to systemic division driven by government policy or due to financial management by the government that seeks to enhance wealth concentration.  “Whatever colour you are, whatever class you are, we are all British and we’re all one big family” is a statement that is entirely at odds with the ideology of the current Tory government. 

Birbalsingh knows her views are false and counter to reality.  She knows she is a liar.  She doesn’t want to change people’s outcomes; instead, she wants them to delude themselves with indoctrinated nationalistic garbage.

What permeates most from her words above is fear.  Staunch conservative Birbalsingh fears for the future of embedded multi-layered establishment control of Britain.  She fears that young people will see through the fog of parliament and media and observe the rottenness of how this country is managed, controlled and subjugated.  She fears that the sham democracy will be exposed, rejected and erased.

Michaela’s approach to teaching is to treat all children exactly the same regardless of their personal backgrounds or lives.  That is not equality.  Her expressed philosophy, elucidated (if that’s not too complimentary a word) in a blog for Conservative Education Society published on 4th March 2016 called Why conservative values are needed in our schools now more than ever, is a very stupid concept of education that, ultimately, favours survival of the fittest and sod everyone else.

Conservatives accept the necessity of inequality because they recognise people have different levels of talent and, most importantly, some people make more effort than others” was a mis-statement of “inequality.”  Inequality in UK is due to lack of social mobility not a lack of effort or lack of talent.  Everything about her philosophy is opposite to a desire to improve social mobility.

The blog was punctuated with assertive repetitions of unquestioned obedience.

I believe in duty and obligation.”
At Michaela, we believe in authority and in tradition.”
We expect obedience from the children.”
We believe in an objective right and wrong.”
Hierarchies are necessary for order.”
We are losing our country to a vampire squid of liberal values.”

Again, her fear shone.

(Five and half years later the Vice-President of Conservative Education Society John Bald welcomed Birbalsingh’s appointment as chair of Social Mobility Commission in Birbalsingh is the ideal choice to champion social mobility where he blamed graduates for their lack of good jobs and complained that Labour’s only comment on social mobility was to complain about “austerity.”  Bald understands why Tories appointed Birbalsingh.)

In an interview for Spiked! she made strange comments about Black Lives Matter

We are all British, whatever colour we are.  That is something that Black Lives Matter undermines, and it saddens me greatly.  Black Lives Matter has now got to the point where it will exacerbate racism in this country.”

Both opinions on Black Lives Matter above are ridiculous.  Black Lives Matter is a socialist organisation; that is why a conservative disapproves.

Birbalsingh delivered a prejudiced opinion of parents of her school’s pupils.

You will find some families who do not want to send their children into school in normal times [not just due to Covid].  They want them at home to look after the grandparents or their younger siblings.”

In a separate interview for BBC Sounds (listen from 13.22), broadcast on 19th May 2020, when asked about “BAME parents” she said

Your listeners won’t necessarily know the communities that we work with.  They [the communities] are not as informed and they might not listen to the news.  So, they don’t really know of the dangers that a more middle-class environment might [know].”

The interviewer, perhaps perturbed by blatant racist stereotypes, interrupted to say that “some of your parents might be highly informed” to which Birbalsingh responded with a couple of “I don’t knows” in the middle of several “ers” and some nervous laughter.

To be fair, her targetted disdain is shared between ethnicity and class.

Henry Jackson Society (HJS) is an unashamed purveyor of modern imperialism, a cheerleader for worldwide libertarian capitalist exploitation backed by military force.  Birbalsingh took part in a discussion hosted by HJS on 21st January 2021 entitled ‘Towards an Improved School System in England: Facing the Challenges of Inequality and Woke Culture.’ (Link to transcript: HJS talk)

Therein, answering her own question “what is the purpose of school?” she created two opposing philosophies in teaching: Her’s and “progressives’.”  The latter, she said,

think that schools should be making children into revolutionaries, and you will hear progressives, as I like to call them, wanting schools to teach children how to question everything and how to be creative.  The progressives have an idea in their head that there is an establishment which is evil.  And what we need to do is inspire children and get them to kind of fight the power as it were.”

Teachers are overwhelmingly on the left and then they some of them have certain ideas that are are perhaps not just on the left but more extreme left.”

Sadly, state schools are not full of Che Guevaras, Rosa Luxemburgs and James Connollys teaching the theory and practice of revolutionary communism.  Birbalsingh’s bizarre analysis was drawn from the same pool of imagination frequented by Steve Bannon, Lauren Boebert and Donald Trump jr.

She continued with an almost incoherent account of Black Lives Matter (in USA) where she claimed they objected to “being nice or kind” in political campaigning and said Black Lives Matter’s position was

we’re (BLM) inspiring them to go and overthrow the rich white man.  Or if you’re teaching them to be kind to be nice, well, then you’re sort of teaching them to just do what the white man says.”

She referred to Critical Race Theory and asked

what is the purpose of school?  Is it to turn them into revolutionaries?  Or is it to teach them to read and write?”

That binary choice doesn’t exist.  Reading and being a good writer are very useful skills for a revolutionary.  

Birbalsingh’s arguments in the HJS discussion were utterly laughable but she is a head teacher and the government has given her a chairing role at Social Mobility Commission.  Laughable yes, but it is no joke.

She conlcuded with an assertion that

we [Michaela Community School] think the way to end racism is to teach children [pupils at Michaela] to work hard and be kind.” 

That is, Birbalsingh thinks people of colour can “end racism” by being kind.  That belief is almost a justification for racism.  What did Birbalsingh imply results from a lack of kindness?

In a paper for HSJ – Black Lives Matter UK: An Anthology – she praised herself for instilling “[national] belonging” in her pupils leading to “empowerment” and “pride” and compared it to “socially devisive” Black Lives Matter methodology.

At Michaela Community School where I am headmistress, we sing ‘God Save the Queen’ and ‘Jerusalem’, and we regularly celebrate being British.  It means that our children are resilient, ambitious, and feel a strong sense of national belonging.  When our children walk past museums, memorials, cathedrals, and castles, they feel empowered because they know something about them, and feel they are theirs to take pride in.”

We must not succumb to the socially divisive demands of hard-Left movements such as BLM UK – especially when it comes to the education provided for our children in Britain.”

Once again, she spoke of her fear of children learning something that might challenge the exploitative status quo that conservatives love. 

It is interesting to learn about the history of the British monarchy, the history of castles, the history of Britain as a global power, as it used to be, but it is without sense to use that history as a tool to focus “belonging” on intangible and useless entities.  Instead of knowledge Birbalsingh wants pride in ephemeral trinkets.  

Tory intent
The common tactic of national pride is a tired old desperate conservative tactic borne of absence of substance in justification for their ideology.  The expression of national pride in anthems, royalty, castles, statues and historical figures shows how empty the tactic is.  It is an attack on intelligence, on the concept of acquiring knowledge and on the benefits of analytical thinking.

There are many conservatives outside of government who know a lucrative career can be enjoyed by being a willing conduit for promoting suffocation of knowledge and of inspection.  Newspapers are packed with suffocating columnists, radio stations (like talkRadio) and TV channels (like GB News) were created to be platforms for the enemies of intelligence and learning, and think-tanks devote their energies to endless assaults on reality.

Birbalsingh will do what Tories want and in the style they want.  Social mobility will remain elusive.

Recommended reading
Dr. Russ Jackson on Birbalsingh

Related blogs
Levelling up? Boris Johnson stamping down in favour of more exploitation
Oliver Dowden, culture war and selective history
Robert Jenrick, planning permission and statues

 

Katharine Birbalsingh, chair of Social Mobility Commission

Tory 2021 party conference marked time in destruction of society

This week (October 2021) Tory government stopped off in Manchester to eat, shit and leave.

Cabinet ministers, in speeches and in accompanying TV and radio interviews, spouted well-worn hard-right libertarian mendacious soundbites that displayed utter contempt for humanity and showed how deeply wedded are the Tories to ensuring greater and greater wealth concentration while everyone else is shafted and sent into penury.

Regurgitation of oft-vomited rancid tripe that began with Thatcher and Tebbit was the key theme of the speakers’ rhetoric.  This endless loop of chundering was set in motion by the actions of Tories in the 1980s and by think-tanks created or reactivated then. 

Several tax-avoiding, secretly-funded, professionally corrupt incestuous mobs were at this year’s conference including Institute Of Economic Affairs, Centre For Policy Studies, Tax-Payers’ Alliance, Centre For Social Justice, Policy Exchange and Adam Smith Institute.  These execrable institutions exist to construct as many tools as possible to concentrate wealth and to design necessary methods of deception and persuasion to encourage and aid government imposition of such tools.

Tory cabinet’s members are direct products of libertarian think-tanks.  MPs have contributed to their literature and to promotion of their ideology for many years.  Some think-tanks were created by current government ministers.  Some think-tank veterans are government advisers (Westley, Isaby) or in government departments (Hannan at Board Of Trade).  It is merely of question of semantics to consider whether think-tanks are expressions of the government’s philosophy or whether Tories are employees of think-tanks.  It is a symbiotic orgy.  Throughout the conference think-tanks held many events with MPs where instructions were issued and direction of government policies were agreed.  Think-tanks’ donors are the real government.

Rees-MoggColville
Conference buddies: Jacob Rees-Mogg (left) and Robert Colville (Centre For Policy Studies)

Some (non-Tory) analysts tried to dissect speeches and comments by senior Tories as if the latter were presenting genuine well-thought perspectives and policies.  Much of the analysts’ energies were used listing all the lies and explaining why certain declarations were contradictory or had been debunked earlier as factually or feasibly worthless. 

Too much respect was given by observers to motivation of the Tories even when observers were very critical.  The purpose of all expectoration by Johnson, Raab, Sunak, Truss, Patel, Javid, etc. at the conference was to restate old cliches of misdirection and misrepresentation in the form of dishonest soundbites, to gaslight opponents with displays of nefariousness, to assure their real employers that they were on track to ensure further wealth concentration, and to promote plans or programs that have no content or intent.

It was a performative party conference.  The speeches were not delivered to the public: Tories rely on compliant media to pick out hollow phrases that can be splashed on newspapers’ front pages or be an introductory remark in a TV report.  BBC was forced to have Tory soundbites as its backdrop for some of its broadcasting from the conference.

Style was also part of the performance: Sunak pretended to be analytical, Javid pretended to have a plan, Raab pretended to be serious and Johnson played the Etonian buffoon.

In isolation, the rhetoric from the conference should have embarrassed any government.  The relentless lying, the crass lack of knowledge, the woefully poor analysis, the extreme indifference to the real situations of people, the incompetence, the blindness to the consequences of Brexit, the absence of any policies or plans, and the casually cruel attitude to the effects of Covid pandemic should have shown the government to be the exact opposite of what a government needs to be.

But, Tories know they can rely on giddy support from the majority of newspapers, and they know that most of the rest of the media will give the government far too much respect (they deserve none at all) and will treat the government as if it is a real government with real interest in wanting to help people. 

The Tories know “opposition” parties will address Tory cabinet members’ statements as if they are grown-up remarks worthy of debate. 

2021’s Tory conference marked time in the sense that the few comments of note were restatements of commitment to annihilation of public services, destruction of NHS, further dilution of democratic accountability, censorship of opposition, and assurances that the poorest will pay over and over again for basic necessities and will be forced to keep feeding the wealthy.

Snippets from the speeches

Home Secretary Priti Patel displayed her disdain for the rule of law when talking about applications for asylum by refugees,

There is the legal process.  If an asylum claim is rejected, there is nearly always an automatic right to appeal.  No surprise that nearly everybody appeals.  Even if the decision to refuse asylum is upheld, there can be yet another appeal.  Right up until the possibility of further appeals at the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.  If that fails, the claimant and their lawyers can start a fresh claim.  And then, even when seated on the plane, their lawyers can still block their removal.”

and explained how she intends to bypass legal process and human rights.

For the first time, how somebody arrives in the United Kingdom will impact on how their asylum claim is processed.  Our new ‘one stop’ shop will tackle the multiple claims and appeals which frequently frustrate removal.”

She said military force will be used against families in boats on the English Channel.

The military [will] deliver operational solutions including new sea tactics, which we are working to implement, to turn back the boats.”

Immediately after the above comments Patel spoke about foreign criminals in a clear attempt to equate asylum seekers and criminals.

On political protests Patel said

I will also increase the maximum penalties for disrupting a motorway, criminalise interference with key infrastructure such as roads, railways and our free press, and give the police and courts new powers to deal with the small minority of offenders intent on travelling around the country.”

Criminalisation of political opposition is a key tenet of the government policy.

Health Secretary Sajiv Javid began by stating 

We know ‘government money’ is taxpayers’ money.”

He followed that with one of the most significant remarks at the conference where he absolved the government (the elected government) of responsibility for doing the basics of what a government should do.

Health – and social care – begins at home.  Family first, then community, then the state.”

The despicable comment erased the fact that people paid taxes and national insurance as payment for health and social care.  He also seemed not to know that an elected government is a servant of the people.  He appeared to view “the state” as a separate entity to a country’s inhabitants who fund it and voted for it.

Javid’s horrendous assertion was a product of his extremist libertarian political stance learnt from the most insidious right-wing think-tanks and was a loud pointer toward his support for privatisation of healthcare.

Ominously, he said

2022 will be a year of renewal and reform [for NHS].  [The review will] shine a light on the outstanding leaders who drive efficiency.”

When Tories say “reform” they always mean destruction.

Justice Secretary Dominc Raab said

We’re investing £4 billion to deliver 18,000 extra prison places.  We need the extra cells to restore some honesty in sentencing.”

If a government needs to increase the number of “prison places” it is an admittance of failure.  The “£4 billion” pounds could be spent on other public services, an investment that could reduce crime.  Raab knows that in USA prisons are very profitable for their “owners.”

Raab’s staunch opposition to rights (workers’ rights, legal rights, human rights) is longstanding.  In his speech he combined anti-immigrant rhetoric with his justification for removing human rights.

Too often they [the public] see dangerous criminals abusing human rights laws.  In one case, a man successfully claimed the right to family life to avoid deportation.  We’ve got to bring this nonsense to an end.  So, today I can tell you that, under this Prime Minister and before the next election,  we will overhaul the Human Rights Act to restore some common sense to our justice system.”

Raab’s opposition to Human Rights Act is not about criminals.  He wants to remove the rights of people so that government and corporations can behave however they want with no legal options for people to fight back to protect themselves and their livelihoods.

In an BBC interview Chancellor Of The Exchequer Rishi Sunak displayed his indifference to London being the tax-avoiders’ capital

I don’t think [London being called ‘tax avoidance capital’] is a source of shame, because actually our track record on this issue is very strong.”

but, in his conference speech he claimed that “we need to fix our public finances” (after eleven years of Tory mismanagement) and, therefore, the poorest people will need to suffer more.

Is the answer to their [Universal Credit claimants] hopes and dreams just to increase their benefits?”

That rhetorical question from Sunak was in the context of his “hopes and dreams” being realised via the wealth of his parents and, later, that of his wife.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss was keen to divide the world into goodies and baddies with UK in the former category.

Either we retreat and retrench in the face of malign actors or we club together and advance the cause of freedom.  My vision is to strengthen our economic and security ties in order to build a network of liberty around the world.  We want to trade with and invest in more countries to our mutual benefit which leads to freer and wealthier societies aligned to the cause of liberty, spreading the human rights and values we believe in.”

When Truss said “our” mutual benefit she meant the financial benefit of cross-border corporations and financial institutions.  She meant the ability of international businesses to exploit without being hampered by pesky government regulations.  Her “cause of liberty” is the cause of libertarianism, or corporate fascism, unhindered by democratic interference.

Truss listed her preferred trade partners in the “cause of liberty” including “the gulf states.”

She warned of “malign actors” and said

We are demonstrating this with the visible armed presence of our carrier strike group.  We are investing in our capability, spending more than 2% of GDP on defence, the biggest since the Cold War.  I want our allies from the Baltic to the Tasman to know that Britain stands with them and that together we will stand up to our adversaries and promote the cause of freedom.”

Truss didn’t say which “malign actors” were operational in either the Baltic Sea or the Tasman Sea.

She mentioned China only once but it was clear that, like her predecessor Dominic Raab in his Global Britain speech in March (2021), Truss wanted to cast China as the main enemy of “a successful, modern, liberal, free enterprise country that time and time again has stood up to despots and tyrants.”

Truss’ desperate desire to enemify China was not a fear of competition in an economic sense, because, clearly, it would make much more sense to form trade deals with China.  Her opposition was on behalf of the real malign actors who want to turn the whole world into a libertarian’s paradise of exploitation and China will not comply with that as the government there acts in the interests of its population.

In a darkly comedic episode she said

We will stand up for free speech [as Priti Patel clamps down on free speech and the government interferes in what can be said in schools and broadcast on BBC], we will stand up for a free press [in a country where almost all press is owned by far-right tax-dodging proprietors] and we will give everyone across the Britain the opportunity to succeed regardless of background [in the context of university education being prohibitively expensive].”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also gave a speech.

Evil clowns

Clowning, embarrassing lack of knowledge, cringeworthy faux optimism, snide comments and utter lack of self-awareness by Tory cabinet members throughout their respective speeches at the party conference were partly an act and partly unintentional.  Most of the words spoken were waffle akin to that spoken by a drunk spouting an incoherent opinion. 

However, within were clear brutal threats of intent and demonstrations of ideology that are extremely worrying for our freedom and our financial security.

This year’s Tory party conference was a succession of malodorous farts that stank of the demise of democratic accountability.

 

Tory 2021 party conference marked time in destruction of society

Liars

Pro-capitalism politicians lie to the public.

They lie about their intent; they lie about reasons for their actions and they lie about their actions’ likely consequences; they lie about costs of public services as a ruse to cut them and they lie about the necessity of tax rises as a ruse to raise them; they lie about the need for public spending on armaments.  Invention of non-existent actions is a popular lie, an extension of lying about intent.

They lie about ineluctability of “the market,” they lie about existence of government “debt,” they lie about value of government “deficit,” they lie about value of currency, they lie about necessity of interest rates, they lie about motivation for inflation, and they lie about effect of the stock exchange.  Their entire presentation of how “the economy” works or how it could work is a lie.

Their biggest lie is that they claim they cannot affect how capitalism exploits or how wealth is concentrated, while doing all they can to perpetuate wealth concentration.

The daily lies include lying about where they were, who they spoke to, who gave them money, what they said to whom and what others said to them.  They lie about their ownership or shareholding of private businesses.  To support such lies they erase public records of ownership, shareholdings and memberships, and delete details of meetings from websites and phone records.

Erasure, omission, obfuscation and misdirection are tactics of their lying.

Lying is so ingrained, imbued at expensive private schools and then at various think-tanks, that politicians are offended if they have to tell the truth or if they are forced to avoid obfuscation.

Checks and balances?

A democratic system of governance is supposed to have, by definition, many checks and balances to ensure that disreputable, dishonest and unlawful behaviour by a government is exposed, countered and prohibited. 

In UK, such checks and balances are ephemeral or, if they exist, they are not used effectively and are being removed.

Labour MP Dawn Butler was ejected from the House of Commons for observing correctly that Boris Johnson is a liar.  It is against parliamentary rules for an MP to accuse another of lying.  However, parliamentary rules also prohibit lies and inventions by MPs but there is no mechanism within the House of Commons for preventing lying or for demanding retractions of lies.  The imposition of the rule to stop MPs accusing others of lying combined with the lack of capability to impose the rule that prevents lying allows politicians to lie relentlessly whenever they speak there.  

Outside the House of Commons beyond the protection of parliamentary privilege, accusations (or observations) of lying can be met with fraudulent legal action coupled with threats of considerable financial costs.  Accurate analysis and revelations of behaviour are often self-censored due to fear of very expensive consequences of legal action taken by wrongdoers.  Libel law in UK enables the wealthiest and the powerful to censor criticism.  There is an industry of legal firms whose main focus is “Reputation Protection.”

According to Gov.uk The Ministerial Code sets out the standards of conduct expected of ministers and how they discharge their duties.”  Pro-capitalism politicians break the code’s rules and guidelines routinely and knowingly.  Lies, misrepresentation, misdirection and inventions by ministers, acts that are in breach of the code, receive little or no response within the terms of the code; there are no consequences and no prevention of repeated similar breaches of the code.  Serious breaches of the code, including multi-billion pound corruption, are covered with lies.  The Ministerial Code is worthless

The current UK government stated its intent via Judicial Review Bill (JRB) to stop legal challenges against the government.  Alongside the previous removal of legal aid JRB will, by design, greatly enhance politicians’ capability to lie without legal rebuttal.

Political opposition

Sometimes politicians remark upon other politicians’ lies but often as part of political combat and point-scoring.  Butler’s intervention mentioned above was a rare occurrence.

Opposition” pro-capitalism politicians are reluctant to highlight pro-capitalism government lies because they would do the same when in government – the same lies, and they do the same in opposition.  (Keir Starmer’s campaign for leadership of Labour was full of lies.)

Politicians, in both houses of parliament and in councils, assume that lying is merely a facet of being a politician.  Political combat is often a contest of crafted lying where the winner is whoever spouted the least easily debunked lie.  Politicians are proud of their adeptness at lying.

Challenges from news media?

Journalists, reporters and interviewers are reluctant to directly accuse politicians of lying.  BBC has a top-down policy of not calling politicians liars.  This reluctance fails the public.  The insistence on respectful diffidence toward politicians, particularly those in government, is a policy that is incompatible with democratic society.

Deceptive language is used by media to skirt around blatant lies of politicians.  Popular words include “inaccuracy,” “mistake” and “misspoke.” 

Often, a blatant lie by a politician is rebranded by a journalist as an “opinion.”  This tactic succeeds readily.  It allows a lie to be declared and broadcast, and any debunking of it is waved away as just a different opinion.  Equal airtime and equal respect is given to lies as to statements of fact; this is called erroneously “balance.”

Part of the reason why politicians can lie in interviews and press conferences without rebuttal or correction is the lack of good preparation by journalists and reporters.  Time is not aside for preparation.  Also, broadcasters prefer to use non-interviewers to conduct interviews who possess neither the skills nor the work-ethic to achieve an effective interview. 

Lack of democratic accountability allows politicians to dodge encounters with some newspapers or broadcasters.  This encourages all newspapers and broadcasters to tread carefully in interviews.

Lies are successful

Politicians’ lies succeed due to two different strands of behaviour by the public.  Both reactions exist with the knowledge that the public are being lied to.

  1. Public cynicism.  This is an understandable response to relentless lies by politicians and repeated failures to do or not do what they said they would do or not do.  People are worn down by an unremitting deluge of untruths, inventions and evasions.  Eventually, it is easier to accept that lying is just how governments operate.  Motivation to fight back is defeated by the relentlessness of the lies.
  2. Desperation to have hope.  Desperation can be lessened by hope and hope can be assuaged by belief.  Grinning clowns in government offering gold at the end of a rainbow, no matter how implausible and no matter how often it was shown to be false gold, can persuade people to believe in hope to banish despair.  Self-blinkered and willingly conned, the need to believe is enough for political charlatans to garner support.

Lying, as a tool of political persuasion, is a much bigger tactic used by governments and by politicians in election campaigns than anything else.  Political parties have moved beyond producing coherent election manifestos and presenting cohesive plans.  Now, it is just a scattergun of lies accompanied by meaningless soundbites and slogans.  Election campaigns are not about politics or the realities of life; they are psychological contests.

Countering the lies  

Due to public connectivity via social media, exposure of lies is done swiftly and concisely by independent news outlets and assiduous individuals.  There is a shadow industry of activists, including journalists and legal professionals alongside dedicated members of the public, who devote time and energy to collating, exposing and analysing politicians’ lies.  Some of the contributors are listed below.

The success of anti-lie activism can be measured by the fearful response from governments.  Many so-called democratic governments enacted, or stated their intent to, changes to the law to censor social media use with the single specific aim of restricting exposure of wrongdoing.  There is constant rhetoric from governments, political parties and think-tanks aimed at denigrating social media as a ruse to persuade the public that censorship thereof is positive.  Major social media businesses succumbed to political pressure and enforced their own censorship without the need for law changes.

The extent of governments’ commitment to silencing opponents of their lies includes jailing those who expose lies.   Julian Assange and Craig Murray are both incarcerated in UK.

It is important that activism against politicians’ lies does not treat the lies as aberrations or as isolated incidents.  The lies are a key intrinsic characteristic of modern political presentation by democratic pro-capitalism politicians.  Lies are their preferred mode of communication.

You’re in suspension,
You’re a liar.
John Lydon

Notes
Lie n.  A false statement deliberately presented as being true; a falsehood. 

Links to professional and citizen activism
Open Democracy
Byline
Declassified
Cage
Baker Street Herald
Lee Camp (Redacted Tonight)
Craig Murray
Richard Murphy (Tax Research)
Desmog
Counterpunch
Black Lives Matter (UK)
Gal-Dem
Ten Toads 4 Truth
Good Law Project
Rad Indie Media

Liars

Rishi Sunak at CPC21

A product of Winchester School, where “fees for 2021/2022 are £43,335 per annum” according to the school’s website, and married to a wealthy heiress whose estimated inherited fortune is £230,000,000, Rishi Sunak prepared for his role as Tory Chancellor For The Exchequer by training at an investment bank and two hedge fund management businesses whereat he learnt how to concentrate wealth in the hands of the wealthiest via whatever means could be gotten away with.

Today (Monday 4th October 2021), he delivered his first party conference speech as Chancellor.  Short and unsurprisingly absent of policy or of acceptance of Brexit effect reality, the speech’s main purpose was to display his intent to hammer down further on the least wealthy people in UK while excusing (of blame and of financial cost) the wealthiest.

His words were another rehash of old Tory lies about how “the economy” works and he used that as a ruse to pretend to justify more cuts to vital public services alongside more costs heaped onto the least able to afford extra costs.

As a response to rises in National Insurance contributions and expected rises in council tax – tax rises that hugely disproportionately affect people with the least wealth and do not affect the wealthiest – Sunak said

I want tax cuts but in order to do that our public finances must be put back on a sustainable footing.  There can be no prosperous future unless it is built on the foundation of strong public finances.  I have to be blunt with you, our recovery comes with a cost.  Our national debt is almost 100% of GDP.  So we need to fix our public finances, because strong public finances don’t happen by accident.  I believe in fiscal responsibility.”

In other words, the Tories will continue to allow multi-billion pound tax avoidance, they will continue to hand out billions to business colleagues for governments contracts, they will continue to do nothing to prevent the harmful financial effects of Brexit, they will continue to allow privately-owned public services to be a conduit for channelling public money into made-up businesses’ offshore accounts, and they will continue to pour billions into pointless “defence” spending as a means of supporting the welfare state for the arms industry but, in their invented depiction of how “the economy” works, the Tories will position the vital need for NHS and social care against the living costs and survivability of the people with the least wealth and income.

His speech was the day after a leak of data revealed (again) that the City Of London is the worldwide centre for tax avoidance.  As a response to the revelations Sunak said in a BBC interview prior to his speech

I don’t think [London being called ‘tax avoidance capital’] is a source of shame, because actually our track record on this issue is very strong.”

He lied: The Tory government has greatly enabled tax avoidance as a deliberate policy.

As justification for the devastating decision to slash Universal Credit payments, a decision that will lead directly to hunger, homelessness and death, Sunak said

Is the answer to their hopes and dreams just to increase their benefits?”

That rhetorical question from Sunak was in the context of his “hopes and dreams” being realised via the wealth of his parents and, later, that of his wife.

Brexit will continue to cause huge problems, particularly shortages of vital goods and higher costs but Sunak declared 

Despite the challenges, in the long term the agility, flexibility & freedom provided by Brexit would be more valuable than proximity to a market [the EU].”

He didn’t say how long the “long term” would be and he followed the comment with details of some further tax breaks businesses will receive.  There was nothing he mentioned (as alleged Brexit benefits) that could not have been done if UK was still in the EU.  The word “challenges” above was doing so much heavy lifting.

Sunak is typical.  He is a typical modern Tory.  Born of wealth, married to wealth, educated at an expensive indoctrination machine that inculcates the hegemony of the power of wealth and the eschewing of humanity, trained at hedge funds and investments banks to focus on concentration of wealth and mendacious presentation of aims and objectives, he has all the tools needed to be a lying, thieving conman with the morality of festering turd.  In other words, a Tory being a Tory.

 

Rishi Sunak at CPC21

Duplicitous centrists espouse joy at Starmer’s behaviour

The centrist gloop in broadcasting, newspapers and politics spent four and a half years (September 2015 to December 2019) attacking socialism.  Having played their roles successfully they switched to earning a grift via undemanding criticism of Johnson and the Tories, criticism that highlighted incompetence of the Tories rather than philosophy or ideology and that never described the causes of Tory policy or the intent.

With equal lack of sincerity, the same gloop indulged in an espousement of joy in response to Keir Starmer’s party conference speech and to words and actions associated with it.  Commentary on the speech included:

Former adviser to Tony Blair Alastair Campbell: “Rich in values and integrity.  Serious prime minister.”
Labour Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer Rachel Reeves: “Outstanding, outstanding speech.”
Deputy leader of Welsh Labour Carolyn Harris: “Absolutely electric.”
Chief political Commentator at ipaper Paul Waugh: “Labour leader seizes moment.  The punchiness of the big speech was matched by a broader self confidence Starmer has shown over the whole week in Brighton.”
Whitehall Editor at Financial Times Sebastian Payne: “Speech was impressive, well crafted and well delivered.”
Former Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron: “Just watched Keir Starmer’s speech.  Decent job.
Sky News reporter Beth Rigby: “Elected leader in April 2020 on a message of party unity and continuity and it was on Wednesday that he finally crystallised what that really means.”
Columnist Ian Dunt: “There was movement, genuine change, happening right in front of your eyes.”
Corporate influencer and ex-freelance mouthpiece Matthew Stadlen: “Starmer has emerged stronger and as a very credible Prime Minister-in-waiting.  He offers hope, decency, seriousness and a proper vision for the future.”
Guardian editor Katherine Viner: “Starmerism offers Britain a fresh approach to leadership and political culture.”
Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee: “Here begins the rebuilding of trust.  No-one can call Labour policy-free now.  By mysterious osmosis people will know Starmer better after this week, and they’ll be a step closer to envisaging an alternative prime minister.”

Rich,” “outstanding,” “electric” and “punchiness” were client adjectives [1] chosen in advance of the speech.  None was a fair assessment of a speech that was very light on policy and very mild in criticism of Tories.  It was a functional speech wherein the function was for Starmer to present himself and his colleagues as an alternative management team to the Tories but not with alternative politics. 

The ecstasy of his complimenters was performative.

As a throwback to their relentless and relentlessly dishonest assaults on the politics of Jeremy Corbyn and his team the gloop’s members were keen to claim that Starmer had erased socialism and they were unconcerned if such a removal was gained via undemocratic and underhand means. 

Former Labour adviser and current Evening Standard columnist Ayesha Hazarika admitted that Starmer’s extrememly undemocratic rule changes were concocted to stop members voting for a socialist.”

He won the respect of moderate members by getting significant rule changes through which mean MPs will no longer be at the mercy of the hard-Left and face deselection.  He has also stopped another Jeremy Corbyn becoming leader, providing MPs aren’t stupid enough to put a total pudding on the ballot paper.” – Ayesha Hazarika, 29th September 2021

Template centrist Ian Dunt used his own interpretation of the choice of topics in Starmer’s speech.

It was a full spectrum-attack on Corbynism: a commitment to tackling crime, celebrating patriotism, prioritising defence and embracing the record of New Labour.  All the things which had alienated voters from Labour were addressed in turn.  It was like we were watching Corbynism being buried.” – Ian Dunt, 29th September 2021

Dunt’s willful dishonesty and analytical fantasy was typical of him – see his analysis of Change UK’s creation [2].  Above, he dodged purposely the fact that the 2019 general election victory for the Tories was due to support for Brexit.  Note that when the likes of Dunt say “Corbynism” they mean socialism, and they always denigrate and misrepresent socialism.

New Statesman’s and Policy Exchange’s Stephen Bush echoed Dunt’s imaginative interpretation.

Starmer started well, with a couple of big and showy gestures to demonstrate that the party is changing under his leadership, and announcements on issues such as crime and defence, which also signal a new approach.” – Stephen Bush, 29th September 2021

There is a necessity for the gloop to adore “Starmerism.”  Having eschewed socialism with peremptory disdain (and continuing to do so) and having distanced themselves from Johnson’s brand of conservatism, they must have something to support in order to justify their self-appraised depiction as activists, analysts, influencers or politicians. 

The invented centre, or “centre-left” as its practitioners describe it, is, by definition, a vacuum; it has no foundation, no history, no aim, no ideology, no dialectics and no solutions.  To be one of its cheerleaders it is necessary to be performative, imaginative and, sometimes, giddy with excitement about nothing.  

A common feature of a cult is that its leader has charisma so that she or he is able to persuade followers to follow without inspection, doubt or pause.  If charisma is absent but the followers are desperate to be in a cult then they must imagine the charisma and must imagine that knowledge, intelligence and foresight are characteristics of the cult’s leader’s persona.

Starmer’s pitch is that he thinks he would be a better manager than Johnson.  That is it.  He does not oppose Johnson.  To believe in Starmer requires complete abandonment of critical thinking.  It requires an absence of interest in opposition to conservative libertarian destruction.

If Starmer persists as Labour leader than both Tory and Labour parties have leaders, and respective teams, that are driven by misrepresentation, falsehoods and sleight of hand and whose professional supporters (MPs, councillors, media, think-tankers, etc.) are comfortable in a pool of delusions.

The epoch of a single political option via a choice of different administrations, of a choice between right-wing media uncritically supporting one possible administration and centrist media uncritically supporting the other, is the epoch of no opposition. 

Destructive Capital’s gain is the public’s loss.  Democracy is dead.

Notes
[1] client adjective n. Adjective used to add supportive description to comment or act by a politician, or to describe the politician’s philosophical stance
[2] Ian Dunt, for Politics.co.uk 20th February 2019: “It was meaningful, in a way that went far beyond the events of today and spoke to something far deeper in our national character.  It stood against the poison of the age: the constant toxic tribalism that has infected our political debate.  It wasn’t just that they sat together.  This was a cultural moment as well as a political moment.  The signs are positive.  A YouGov poll for the Times today found extraordinary levels of support for the new group.  It is perfectly realistic to imagine that within a month or two, they could have 30 or so MPs.  Once they get past 35, they overtake the SNP as the third party and get a guaranteed place asking questions at PMQs.  The moment is primed for something to truly shake up the way this country does politics.  This could be it.” – Dunt on Independent Group

Related blog: Duplicitous centrists espouse despair at Tories’ behaviour

Duplicitous centrists espouse joy at Starmer’s behaviour