While the media are concentrated on Tory shenanigans, Labour Party members must seize the chance to turn Corbyn’s insurgency into a decisive force, says Craig Murray.
By Craig Murray
Sometimes we do not know when small actions could have the most momentous effects. The Archduke Franz Ferdinand loved his wife, which was most unusual for a Hapsburg. She was not of royal blood and strict protocol meant she could not appear in public ceremonies with him in Vienna. Which is why he chose to undertake a royal visit to the obscure Serbian provincial city of Sarajevo for her birthday. The rest, as they say, is history.
The historian AJP Taylor liked to list Franz Ferdinand’s love for his wife as a cause of the First World War, a reminder that history is the study of human beings. Of course, the massive arms race between the imperial powers, and the nationalist and democratic forces acting on old heterogenous dynastic empires, lay at the root of the First World War. But Taylor’s absolutely correct point is that even the greatest store of paraffin will not ignite without a spark, and perhaps the spark may never come. I am with Taylor on this, against the rigid determinists.
Current Collapse of Party Structures
The vast transfer of wealth from everybody else to the bankers in the great banking collapse, and the huge growth in wealth inequality and obscene concentrations of wealth in a tiny number of private hands, are the underlying causes of the collapse in old political party structures across the Western democracies and the rise of insurgent politics in all its various forms, mostly under the careful control of the elite using all their media control to misdirect popular blame for mass poverty against immigrants.
There are however genuine examples of insurgent politics seeking to craft a fairer society in the U.K., of which the SNP (Scottish National Party) and Yes Movement in Scotland, and Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters in England and Wales, are the most important examples.
Unusually for me, this article is addressed primarily to Corbyn supporters down in England and Wales. You don’t have to be an Austrian archduke to stand at the moment when your own small actions can have profound, indeed historical ramifications. If just somewhat fewer ordinary people in 18thcentury France had acted on Camille Desmoulins’ great speech as the revolutionary impulse teetered, the world might have been very different. Corbyn supporters are at that moment of historic decision right now – and mostly do not realize it.
Jeremy Corbyn represents the only realistic chance the people of England and Wales have been given in decades, to escape from the neoliberal economics that have impoverished vast swathes of the population. But he leads a parliamentary party which is almost entirely comprised of hardline neoliberal adherents.
Record of Labour MPs
The majority of the parliamentary Labour Party are the people who brought in academy schools, high student tuition fees, introduced more privatization into the health service than the Tories have, and who brought you the Iraq and Afghan wars. They abstained on the Tory austerity benefit cuts and on Prime Minister Theresa May’s “hostile environment” immigration legislation. They support Trident nuclear missiles. Many hanker after bombing Syria, and most are members of Labour Friends of Israel.
Even before the current disintegration of U.K. political structures, there was no way that these Labour MPs were ever going to support Corbyn in seeking to return the U.K. towards the mainstream of European social democracy. They have spent the last four years in undermining Corbyn at every turn and attempting to return Labour to the right-wing political establishment agenda. In the current fluid state of U.K. politics, with sections of Labour MPs already having split off and others threatening to, it is even more important that the very large majority of Labour MPs are replaced by people who genuinely support the views and principles for which Jeremy Corbyn stands.
Regrettably Labour MPs do not automatically have to run for re-selection against other potential party candidates, but under one of those hideous compromises so beloved of Labour Party conferences, they have to notify their intention to again be the party’s candidate for the constituency, and there is then a very brief window of a couple of weeks in which local branches and trade union branches can register a contest and force a challenge.
Chance to Bring a Challenge
That process has now been triggered and it is essential that every Labour Party acts NOW to try to get rid of those dreadful Blairite MPs. If you do not act, the historic moment will be missed and the chance to move England and Wales away from neoliberalism may be permanently surrendered.
The right-wing forces have the massive advantage of inertia. The local MP is very likely a crony of the chairs of the relevant local branch institutions and of the appropriate local trade union officials (and there is insufficient public understanding of the fact that historically the unions are very much a right-wing force in Labour politics). I am willing to bet that in the vast number of constituencies local officials and MPs are pretty confident of getting through this without the large majority of their members – especially the vast new Corbyn supporting membership – even noticing that anything is happening.
Which is why you need to act. Phone the chair of your local constituency today and demand that they tell you how to go about forcing a re-selection battle. Make sure that they give you the phone numbers for any local branches or institutions you have to go through. If you do not know the phone number for your local constituency chair, phone Labour HQ and get them to tell you. If you are a member of an affiliated trade union or organization, take action there too
Do not be put off. Do not follow any instruction from anyone, not even Momentum, about MPs who ought not to be challenged. Politics is a dirty game and full of dirty deals. Use your own judgement. Certainly any of the Labour MPs who abstained on Tory welfare cuts, failed to oppose the “hostile environment” immigration policy or voted to bomb Syria must be subject to challenge. I would recommend that you challenge any Friend of Israel, given that Israel is now openly an apartheid state. Remember, you may be able to influence two constituencies — that where you live, and through your trade union branch that where you work.
Whether or not you are a Labour Party member (and remember I am not), please bring this article to the attention of any and every Labour Party member you know. Progress reports in the comments section would be extremely welcome, as would anyone willing to take the time to draw up “hit lists” based on the kind of criteria I outline above.
While the media are concentrated on the Tory shenanigans, it is the Labour Party members who have the chance to make choices which could have in the long term much more important effects upon society; if people act as I recommend, this could be a historic turning point. Otherwise it will just be one of those moments that passed, and the Corbyn insurgency a small footnote of might have been.
Craig Murray is an author, broadcaster and human rights activist. He was British ambassador to Uzbekistan from August 2002 to October 2004 and rector of the University of Dundee from 2007 to 2010.
This article is from CraigMurray.org.uk.
No BS, JC will not save us. His pledges amount to nothing more than another spin on the reformist misery-go-round. They include expanding wage slavery and a million new homes being built over five years. Yet no Labour government has ever left office with unemployment lower than when it started and after World War II (Labour has supported all wars since WWI – bang goes the peaceful foreign policy pledge!) Bevan promised to solve the housing problem. Other pious pledges include ‘security at work’ (recall the use of troops as strike breakers against the dockworkers) and a secure NHS. Labour Minister Bevan felt more secure with his own private physician, and with the introduction of charges for dental and optical services he resigned, failing to say ‘that’s capitalism folks!’ Tuition fees? That was Labour too. Do not bank on the pledge for them to be reversed! The climate change pledge? That’s likely to be just hot air. Free transport? No, nothing more than the possibility of an expanded publically-controlled bus network. Apparently, FTSE 100 CEOs are now paid 183 times the wage of the average UK worker. Expect a redistribution of crumbs, nothing more. Emphasis on human rights? Your right to be exploited is guaranteed under Labour!
High time for a change.
Hello Craig Murray and Everyone, This is the same path of destruction that the US has also travelled. More and more right wing goons will take over once democratic countries and the world will destroy itself due to the inherent insanity of the right wing/conservative mind! Will the last real human please turn of the last light!
DW, the reply tab of your last post is missing on my Steve Jobs display. with as many points you make maybe i should switch to the desktop. my easy chair and coffee is too difficult to escape from, though.
first off, from time to time something i run across somehow sticks inside my overburdened cranium. i actually never have read anything by the guy from baltimore but his one liners were spot on.
i would suggest in the strongest terms for you to read Pillsbury’s “ The Hundred Year Marathon “.
it is impossible to over recommend that book. they had it at our library system. i’m lucky, the whole county’s libraries are tied together. if one of them has it, they run deliveries and drop it to the branch nearby.
additionally, Mancur Olsen’s “ The Rise And Decline Of Nations “. PhD Economist, Yale University press 1982. that one i had to buy, paperback. unlike Keynes, he didn’t write gibberish.
after awhile i started wondering how and why a nation like ours could flush itself down the toilet. Olsen’s thesis was Distributional Coalitions. it is quite common sense. perhaps that is why i think highly of his book. much of what he wrote about unfortunately describes human nature. like big company disease, it’s likely inevitable.
i am not the only one who figures one world government is the objective. my guess is the power elite across the globe are quite on board with the idea. the question then becomes, who gets to run the show ?
in the mean time, how does the process go from where we were, to the desired goal ? the descendants of the frankfurt school are quite useful to apply a method used for over 45 years i am personally aware of. you don’t need a conspiracy. it is very simple. even a moron can do it. morons do it better, since they don’t over think it. a vast majority of the people doing it aren’t even aware ( woke ) that they are being used to accomplish the underlying objective.
given any issue the left in America will always choose the path that will make our country weaker. the more issues the better.
questions about me, hmmm. for some reason i remember my Mom calling me her “ little John Bircher “ when i was 9 or 10. i was born this way.
going to your comments,
sending work overseas, etc. there were strategic reasons explained in Pillsbury’s book. it started in the Nixon administration and was very bi partisan ever since. slick willie did his part, Reagan, bushies were obviously on board all the way through to my half brother. about that time though it was obvious the strategy had failed. china will not become a western style democracy. however, they do seem to work effectively to make their country great again, for now.
modular buildings ? for people ? i think they already exist and are the generally the least aesthetic commercially available. architecturally pleasing modulars … sounds likes a good idea. i have become aware of a cabinet shop in florida that competes with the chinese on volume, successfully. a possible market opportunity ? we’re not young men anymore. my guess it would require a lot of talent. those guys don’t work cheap. maybe the sili con valley guys would invest. they have more money than they know what to do with.
yeah, you need some good chemical and civil engineers to design systems to clean up the leftovers from modern production. it has been noted we also exported our pollution problems to china with our jobs.
the wikiguys say the first American nuke to go on line to the grid was in Virginia in ‘57. i just read TMI will shut down in Sept. 22 years from ‘57 to ‘79. 79 to 19 is 40 years. it would seem the engineering lessons were well learned, no ? from what i remember hearing way back then was someone had the idea to start training the reactor controllers with simulators. just like pilots. as an aside, do you know what TMI, Chernobyl and the Exxon Valdez had in common ? they all happened on graveyard shift. machine shop guys know about off shift work. there’s a reason they call it graveyard.
it is obvious the universities are saturated with peepul who are quite ready to collect their paycheck while doing the frankfurt dance. many of their graduates get a government job, can’t get fired and have a fabulous pension.
i’m above ground because of a couple of very skilled doctors. if the lunatics on tv last night have their way, those doctors will become government employees. i wonder how many of those Atlas’s will Shrug.
the swamp, Olsen’s book covers it historically. he used the chinese dynasty’s as examples. later on i ran across a chinese phrase, “ The Mandate Of Heaven “. i wonder how accurate that was. i know i shouldn’t believe everything i read. i have a hard time figuring which half is correct.
yup, the guys who built the hardware that won the cold war figured i was worth giving it a try to see how i would do. there were a lot of patriots. and some guys who were there just for the paycheck. i remember a conversation with one old timer hot shot, not there just for the paycheck, in St Louis who worked on the Mercury program among others. he said in retrospect we really didn’t need to do the moon shots. he thought the cash should have been spent elsewhere to help out the poor. i was nine when Neil and Buzz took their stroll. i told him i respected the opinion coming from him especially, but i disagreed.
you talk to politicians ? there’s a reason i don’t. San Diego Naval Hospital is where i was born. currently 21 statute miles just a little north of magnetic west from where i grew up under the approach path to Moffett NAS … now google int’l. Larry and Sergei’s Gulfstreams and Boeings are quite the nice planes. i did my machinist training less than a half mile from where they are parked at NASA Ames.
no, i have a very difficult time watching any national politician talk. but i do enjoy DJT getting all the right peepuls heads exploding at least weekly. similar to Willem DaFoe in Flight Of The Intruder, court martial scene.
i understand about the opposition to wars. good people want nothing to do with it. good people are not ruthless. so how do we here keep psychopaths there from taking us down ? what happens when psychopaths run countries ? ( and please don’t tell me orange man bad is a psychopath. he hasn’t done any more than JFK, while he was president. )
the stunningly beautiful ( a favorite phrase of mine ) Svetlanas and sweet grandma Maries need to be protected.
worker directed manufacturing … hmm … depends on the workers.
i’ve seen more than a few types. but i have been out of that realm for two decades now. way back in the day if you called it a quality circle, you were johnny on the spot. say six sigma from time to time and you were a guy on the go. when it was actually applied diligently it worked. the interesting thing is the people who were already diligent were always trying to do better anyway. there’s a lot of apathy out there.
somehow the … worker directed … jumped out of sequence. i concluded with protection.
The agenda is too specific and does not address what people care about. Yes, the Zionist have too much power, yes Labor Party members of Parliament shouldn’t have supported bombing Syria. I doubt very much the Labor Party electorate are pro immigration. The poodle approach is nauseating when Britain plays America’s poodle. Maybe just saying the present Labor Party members of parliament are bought and paid would be enough to trigger something meaningful. The idea of giving people the chance to determine who runs is extremely important, perhaps the most important part of the process. Same applies in America.
Either way, Labour is a waste of space.
Britain needs to remove the factions that have inserted themselves between the electorate and the legislature and restore the Commons with the purity of independent MPs. Those factions have consistently sold themselves to whoever pays regardless of the wishes and hopes of the people. End them.
The duty of an MP is to represent his electors. That’s who he gets his instructions from and that’s who he has to convince of any ideas of his own. He represents and has no authority except as a representative. His job when matters come before the House for deliberation is to mull the case and provide his best opinion. That’s it.
Lets wait and see if the Tories actually anoint The Boris. Then it gets interesting quick. The other guy is no winner either, Where do they find these people? We should all remember that Gordon Brown was a Scot and Labor was strong in Scotland . It wasn’t that long ago. Tony Blair is a long hangover. A long shadow. Only he does not regret his staying on too long. He thinks he should still be Prime Minister. A Majority of One. SNP is comprised of people that before were associated with Labour. They will be associated with Labour after the next election as well they should be.
Hodge and Ellman were spewing out their lies and hate today, demanding the purging of Chris Williamson.
100 Labour MPs and peers signed up to the Zionist agenda demanding he be sacked.
Williamson is one of the very few remaining decent Labour MPs.
This makes a mockery of CM placing any hope whatsoever in the PLP.
Labour is a lost cause.
Labour is a dead end.
It has been hijacked by the Board of Deputies and the Mossad office down the Israeli embassy.
The delusion shared by those on the outer reaches of both the right and the left in UK politics is that the further they move in their desired direction of travel, the more support they will attract from the voters. In fact the opposite is the case, as has been demonstrated in election after election. In UK general elections the party which wins is the party which captures the centre ground. Therein lies the weakness of Craig Murray’s analysis. Labour Party activists selecting pro-Corbyn candidates will not lead to change, because the electorate will not support a party which it perceives as having moved too far to the left. Ironically, Corbyn’s best chance of success lies in the self-destruction of the Conservative Party over Brexit. And in the mirror image of Labour’s problem, a major element of that self-destruction derives from the belief amongst some Conservatives that their route to success lies in pushing further to the right.
A short question for Caveman: during all of the times centrists won, have their been any real efforts to overturn the Thatcherite consensus?
Voting records for British MPs are well published here https://www.theyworkforyou.com/mps/
Most labour party members will know whether their MP is Blairite, Conservative-lite or joined one of the coup attempts agaist Corbyn. Will they push for deselection as they perhaps would have a few years ago?. Remember that members were asked at the last election to campaign for sitting MPs no matter what because the priority was a good result for Corbyn – that bitter pill will be swallowed again in most cases. Members have also seen how easily long standing and admired anti racist campaigners and even Jewish anti Israel campaigners were kicked out of the party. Members have seen how the charismatic Corbyn supporter and advocate for compulsory reselection, MP Chris Williamson was taken down by antisemitism allegations – although reinstated this week much weakened and under fire. What chance for an ordinary member who speaks out to deselect a MP who happens to be a labour friend of Israel MP? Many will keep their powder dry so they can be there when Corbyn needs their vote at the next coup.
The list of labour party MPs who are members of Labour Friends of Israel can be found here https://www.lfi.org.uk/in-parliament/
Ah, Mr. Murray, you don’t take a large enough view of history. The likes of the neo-Liberals will lose. The question isn’t if but rather when. And the further away the when is, the more violent the denouement will be.
Ahhh a cynic. Enjoy your hopelessness.
Murray, the SNP, and Corbyn all claim to be pro-EU and opposed to neoliberalism. I admit my ignorance, but I find those positions incompatible. The EU appears (to me and to others) to be fundamentally a neoliberal project. In addition, how can you fight neoliberalism without sovereignty?
Yes, mbob there is a striking (and often ignored) dissonance in being, or claiming to be, against neo-liberalism (neo-conservatism with w progressive face) while also being pro-EU. If ever there was, outside the USA, a neo-liberal political institution, one that loves austerity (for the lower orders only and especially in the “lesser” member states) and answers only to its paymasters, the trans-Atlantic corporate-capitalist-imperialists and the apartheid state.
Socialism does not exist in the EU. Period.
People presumably knew this brief window when Labor MPs can be challenged within the party for the right to run again in their constituencies was coming at some point, if not exactly now.
It’s easy for me to say, but Corbyn-supporting Labor activists should already long ago have laid the groundwork for exactly what Craig Murray here says has to happen, and done so on an organized and national basis.
I appreciate the information here as an outside observer, but I hope this piece isn’t actually as crucial as Craig is making it out to be: that’d imply a dismally apathetic Labor left.
Hopefully, Craig is overdramatizing the need for this clarion call, and what he is prescribing is already well underway.
I have a great deal of respect for CM and Corbyn. They are individuals of transparent decency and integrity, and I always listen to what they say with interest.
But with respect, CM is deluding himself in expecting anything positive to come of Labour under Corbyn.
In this he is not alone. A great many people have invested their hopes in Labour under Corbyn, but they will be disappointed.
85% of the PLP are Blairite Backstabbers. People like the loathsome Tom “I Am A Proud Zionist” Watson, Benn, Bradshaw, Bryant, Phillips, Ellman, and so many others of their ilk. This applies to the equally vile Shadow Cabinet. There have been two assassination attempts against him so far. They are more terrified of a Labour victory under Corbyn (as many of them have openly stated) than the Deep State, the Spooks, the City, the MSM, and the ruling class combined.
Labour is a dead end. It is a waste of time, a waste of energy, a distraction and a diversion. It is going nowhere.
The self de-selection of Berger, Umuna, Austin and a few other pieces of human sewage was a welcome development, for what it is.
But you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. The only way of making something worthwhile of the Labour Party would be to take out a minimum of 200 Labour MPs. There are at most 30 decent Labour MPs like Chris Williamson, and they are being relentlessly smeared by the Zionist Mafia of the Friends of Israel, Board of Deputies, and Mossad Office.
Labour was destroyed by Blair. Not even Jezza can put Humpty Dumpty back together again.
Voting Labour just gives legitimacy to the dead wood like Watson. If Labour ever was elected, Jezza would be removed immediately afterwards and replaced by a “safe pair of hands” like Watson or Thornberry. This would be done by a Lula/ Bolsonaro style constitutional coup, an expanded smear campaign, or an actual assassination organised by our spook friends.
We have already had the “Jezza is a communist spy/ Jezza is a terrorist/ Jezza is an anti semite” smears, 14 pages of them in one edition of the Daily Mail before the election.
There is no point trying to resuscitate the Labour corpse, Baron Frankenstein style.
So what is the answer? I don’t know, I only know it’s not voting Labour.
Why not abandon the dead wood and form a new party? Farage did it. It worked for him. There may be other answers other people have thought of.
Corbyn supported the U.S. in trying to overthrow Assad, which meant supporting “moderate rebels”, aka terrorists, who taunted and beheaded a 12-year-old boy amongst other crimes, and may have led to ISIS and Al Qaida types in control of a country; supported the Snooper’s Charter – which, as Edward Snowden pointed out, goes further than many autocracies – he didn’t put up any obstacles in its way, but the EU did! – and that brings me to Brexit: lied that “the country decided to leave” in a fair and democratic vote, and supports a damaging exit from the EU against the wishes of Labour Party supporters- and flat-out lied about Julian Assange having to go to Sweden to face sexual assault charges. THE GUY IS A FRAUD!
” They are more terrified of a Labour victory under Corbyn (as many of them have openly stated) than the Deep State, the Spooks, the City, the MSM, and the ruling class combined.”
“Labour is a dead end.”
To me these two statements do not compute.
From the “enemy of my enemy is my friend” pov, there is every reason to support Corbyn.
The very fact that Pompeo and Co. are so desperate to interfere in UK politics to get rid of him says to me that he is the best thing available.
No one is perfect, certainly no politician, but Corbyn deserves to get the “hold your nose” vote.
I am not happy at seemingly poor decisions that Corbyn has made in Syria and elsewhere, but I don’t know the internal pressures.
We know the neoliberal Long Knives are out to get him.
As far as I can see he is the best hope for the UK at the current time.
And not just to thwart the Long Knives.
You can’t vote for Corbyn. You are just voting for the Blairite backstabbers who surround him. That’s the point and the problem.
This is excellent advice from Murray, a lifelong Liberal and a Scottish Nationalist.
Opportunities such as that offered by Corbyn do not come up very often, all the weight of the Establishment is against them, so anyone in the UK with the opportunity to do so ought to think very carefully before failing to throw everything behind Corbyn. Starting, as Murray says, by joining the local Labour Party and helping to get rid of the Blairite cuckoos who have been feasting themselves in the people’s nest for decades.
I would simply add to Craig’s advice that the choice between supporting Corbyn and socialism or continuing to support the Scottish neoliberal National Party should be a very easy one for genuine nationalists in the tradition of Kier Hardie, and John Maclean. And Labour needs a few dozen Scots socialists for the battles ahead. Battles which will only really begin-as Pompeo pointed out recently- when Labour wins the election.
Bevin – as you know well – Liberals are not Socialists. They occupy a space between Socialism and Tory-ism. Sort of “social democrats” I suppose.
Historically they have supported “laissez faire” economics – i.e. “free trade” (typically of the imperialist variety still existent today) and very small government. Later they softened their position to *include* minimal levels of welfare and they introduced the beginnings of the welfare state in the early 1900s.
I recall the days of Jo Grimond’s Liberal Party… he seemed a nice enough bloke. He was an MP for the Orkney Islands. (Only a couple of places in England had remained Liberal strongholds by the 1960s, if I recall right; they remained strong in Scotland and Wales.) The Liberals were gung-ho for the UK joining what was then the European Economic Community (EEC), which later morphed into the EU.
The Liberals had a renaissance during the 1960s-80s, sort of, appealing as they did to the growing bourgeoisie across the UK. At heart they are a solidly bourgeois party. Their difference with the Blairite-Thatcherite neo-liberal-neo-cons may lie in their being somewhat more inclined (at least on an individual basis) to end austerity, increase welfare for the poorer sections of society, but at the same time be on board with capitalism (Social Democracy).
Thus it is not surprising that a Liberal supporter would also be an EU supporter. (The well-educated, well-employed can move around the EU countries with ease, find work there; but what of the brickies? the farm workers? the stone-yard employees? the hotel-cleaners? wait-staff? and the like – just how easy is it for English or Welsh working class people to cross the Channel for decent work and good pay? Not that, I would suggest.)
I like Corbyn a lot.
A thoroughly decent and fair-minded politician. Such a rare thing.
But he has mortal and dedicated enemies in Britain’s Israel lobby.
They have conducted an unprecedented series of attacks on him over the last couple of years.
And now the American Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has promised to join the battle. talk about interfering in other people’s elections.
Pompeo, a Neocon, of course is under strong American Israel Lobby influence, hence Pompeo’s viciousness towards Iran.
If you are interested in background for Corbyn, you’ll find some here:
FYI, Pompeo is what I believe is called a Dominionist. That is, a “believer” that only and especially a catastrophe like world-wide thermonuclear war which would leave the planet in ruins with most of us dead, will herald the second coming of Jesus. This is what they work for. And pray for. (Not a few Generals are into this too.) Not a neocon. A maniac.
but if the nice man jeremy colluded with the russians, would it be a threat to british democracy ?
Ah, old geezer, what is your problem with Russian human beings?
What do you worry that Corbyn and the Russians would “collude” on, about, it around? Something specific.
I thought you liked Trump, and you must be a bit annoyed that he had been accused of “collusion”, without ANY specific, actual evidence.
Do you perceive any parallel issues here?
Any attempts to create suspicion, to malign someone without actual reason, beyond political gain or malicious intent?
What are you issues with Corbyn?
Do you think him a commie?
I know that is a serious concern for you.
Again, if you really wish to engage discussion, then elaborate, otherwise, you merely toss stink bombs.
Well, Corbyn had his chance to hide is Russophilia when he was taped while visiting a preschool. And what did he do? He chose matryoshkas to play with the innocent impressionable tykes!
What is less funny is that there were actually news stories about this “transgression”.
That said, there are insinuation that Brexit was caused by Russia and Brexit Party is a den of Russian influence. Tory party is beguiled by both. So, for the first time in history, every party with a sliver of chance to win next elections is “colluding with Russians”. British independence (or quiet dependence form USA) seems fading…
i grew up with a ukrainian from kindergarten to high school. ( disclosure, i am a closet kulak ) he never went into details and said very little, but if the subject was raised his rage was unmistakable, for such an easy going soul. he would get up and walk away. after awhile no one ever mentioned it again.
a young man i trained as a machinist with a guy who was of russian jewish descent. his grandfather attempted escape with 2 friends, when they were a little younger than we were. 2 of the 3 made it. we had some good times after learning to program CNC machines, knocking off a few heinekens.
it would seem the ruskies have progressed quite a bit after giving up on trying to invent the new soviet man.
it is fascinating to me to see these replies. it would seem the, as you call them, stink bombs are somewhat effective, no ?
Well, old geezer, agree with you or not, your enhanced comments are actually appreciated, not only for the expanded perspective but for your personal history.
Actually, there are more areas of agreement than the “Russia did it!” BS.
I sent you a reply comment on that other thread, however, the ether dog, apparently, ate it.
I am still curious about why you turn your back on your neighbor(s).
I do think we old white male Boomers have enough shared experience, that we have more than a familiarity with Mencken in common.
An another civil(?) war IS a most idiotic notion.
Claiming to be “woke” is self-indulgent virtue signaling, and violence just begets more violence.
When I was young, the general message was that all Russians hated us, that they despised us, wanted us dead, simply because they were “Godless commies”.
Then, when I was about eight years old, a favorite grad-student of my father, married a Russian woman.
When I met her, I was blown away. Even at eight years of age, I realized that she was an amazing person. She was stunningly beautiful. She was also incredibly intelligent, she spoke eight languages, fluently, had degrees in literature and science, was a gifted artist and musician and, best of all, she was willing to talk to me, to answer my questions, to make clear to me that she, her family, and everyone they knew, were not different from the people I knew, did not, in fact, hate us at all (I sure did not want her to hate me, as I quickly realized that, were I ever to find a woman like her, I would be more than lucky, I suspect you may know what I mean). In fact, she said that Russian children were told that we hated THEM!
That got me thinking that maybe the problems between nations had more to do with what people were told was so than with what actually was so.
I think of the handful of Iranians I have known.
I liked each and every one of them.
Fundamentally, people are really much more alike than different. And such difference as there is, is really to be appreciated.
Frankly, I would find it boring if everyone were the same, thought the same, liked the same things, didn’t like the same things, again I’m pretty certain, old geezer, that you know what I mean.
So, the issue ain’t people.
It is policy, politics, and the behavior, threats, ambition, of “leaders” and the militant insistence of “leaders” that other people do what those “leaders” want, in the name of whatever “philosophy” of power, whatever it’s name, that intends to dominate, however brutally, people who see things differently.
Mencken once wrote:
“The whole point of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”
That seems to sum up the history of the most nations, although Mencken was talking about ours.
I think he tossed a pretty substantial stink bomb with that one.
What do you think?
Thank you, DW BARTO!
Yours is a very beautiful comment which supports all my own experiences with Russian human beings, with Iranians and everyone else.
Our leaders try to use all of us so that they can follow up their ugly war mongering business. Just compare the russian leaders, f. e. Putin and Lawrow with their western opponents. They seem to be much more humane, fair and wise.
Further, old geezer, as a machinist you are very aware that the U$ was the manufacturing envy of the world BECAUSE people, like yourself, were not merely competent, many were masters, knew how to do things, could innovate and solve problems – without a management “team” telling them what to do. I have known people who worked in the steel mills of Bethlehem, Johnstown, and Pittsburgh Pennsylvania whose knowledge base, now lost, of metallurgy was not just profound but, in my opinion, inspired.
I watched all that be “off-shored” to China. Friends had to go to China and teach people to do jobs they once had done.
The Chinese are now doing what once we did, and it is making them wealthy, as it once made us. They will surpass us because we no longer make much of what we need.
I do not blame the Chinese, the workers or the corporations. I hold the U$ corporations and their owners, the ones who had no loyalty to their workers or to their communities, now known as “fly-over”, “rust-belt”, country. Or, more properly, as “sacrifice zones”.
I do not know how you feel about that, but I think it a travesty, a screw over.
I would like to know what you think about it.
As a person who appreciates practical skills, as you, I am certain, do, what do you think about that hollowing out of capacity, even as people, many as intelligent as any of the elite, and far more capable of genuine contribution, were told that what they knew, what they could do, were not worth anything anymore?
yeah, i got a similar effect with the awaiting moderation stall
may i humbly state i try not to put people in a basket … unless that is where they can be classified by their demonstrated behavior.
my polish grandmother was overly sweet. it drove my mom nuts. my polish uncles were sly guys. i remember them smiling a lot.
your review of american manufacturing sounds quite familiar. i believe we have found common ground with you and DJT. the question then becomes, if DJT is for it are you against it.
douglas aircraft stated sending work to the chinese about the time i graduated engineering school. at the time i thought it was nuts. i was told i didn’t see the big picture. that factory no longer exists. only recently have i learned this crap was directed from the very top of the “ decision makers “ in this country. re Michael Pillsbury “ The Hundred Year Marathon “.
building commercial aircraft aint easy. the chinese have their second stringers working on it and can’t quite get there … yet. the first stringers are doing fine with stealth fighters and i don’t know what else. got any idea where those guys went to school ?
yeah, i agree one hundred percent with the people who say the leadership of this country have their heads in a very stinky place. so where was anyone, left or right, to stop the hemorrhaging of jobs off shore. the only one i remember was Ross Perot. he was eviscerated for stating the obvious.
what i find fascinating is how it is not allowed to say make america great again. would it help income inequality if it were ?
bottom line, if the electoral decision is to follow where the peepul on tv last night want to go,
well, it’s all been done before and the result will be einsteinian.
those peepul are from some damn lunatic asylum …
my neighbors are degreed PhD technical geniuses, and such caricatures. she accused me, very seriously, of cutting her roses.
what happens when a leftist is wrong ? she never once considered it.
i can give a glaring eff off look. but they are next door so i don’t say it, and i now keep my back turned.
( a mall nearby was torn down and rebuilt. the rats scattered and were hungry. i shot a few with a pellet gun. if i were smart i would have thrown one over the fence. but like i said before, my knuckles drag )
Well, old geezer, If Trump says to the U$(?)
corporations, “Look, this globalization shit is really about you arseholes taking over governments, everywhere, as you did in the U$, and then screwing the people who actually built the U$, actually built some of the best products that the world ever saw, while you pricks figured your profit margins were not lucrative enough, so you just left, left the people, left the towns and cities, left the country, then your banker buddies really screwed the pooch AND got bailed out by that pusillanimous little shit, Obama.
Here is the deal. IF you want to be U$ corporations then you will have your products MADE IN the U$, you WILL pay wages commensurate with the skills and talents necessary to build the best things to rebuild the infrastructure OF the U$, rebuild the rail system, including high speed rail systems which are a shit-load more efficient than air travel, and so on (to be filled in, in great and specific detail).
Your ripped off “capital” will be clawed back.
It will be invested in worker directed manufacturing based on recommendations by old geezer and others like him, who will sit down with each other, determine where the most highly skilled people you shafted might be and bring them into the rebuilding effort, because too many young people have not been taught the practical skills necessary to a society, which for its own TRUE security MUST be able to make what IT needs, from medicine to vehicles not premised on planned obsolescence and failure, to efficient modular building systems flexible enough so that we no longer have a coast to coast sprawl of ugly, inefficient structures that all look depressingly the same.”
That’s for starters.
Either you, personally, help rebuild the rust belt, even trimming roses for difficult old ladies, removing all the toxic waste you walked away from, the fly ash, and heavy metals, the asbestos and so on, we’ll even let you wear protective gear your lobbyists considered “adequate”.
Where are you supposed to put this stuff you clean up?
How about YOUR backyard, you know, like was done at Love Canal, up there by Niagrs Falls.
Then you can swing by Three Mile Island and clean up all that shit, maybe even all that shit the winds blew Southwest.
That’s for starters.”
Sure, old geezer, I would sign off on that, provided you were involved in having a hand(?) in the decision process.
Wadda ya think?
See, I don’t want a bunch of people who went to Harvard or Yale, or places like that who have no practical ability, have never worked in a dangerous job, never ran a lathe, tied rebar, built houses, wrenched on an engine, solved problems on the fly, or even invented something that was not just an electronic circuit, unless they can wire three-phase and can walk through a forest without getting lost.
Now, I am not just talking about men, here, I am talking about women, about everybody, frankly I often have more respect for nurses than doctors,
I think those who can communicate well, can write, not to manipulate, to confuse, to trick, to deceive, but to share real ideas, that is worthwhile work. I happen to know you agree or you would not appreciate Mencken.
Trump talked about draining the swamp.
That is not merely individual people, it is a whole attitude of corruption, of lying, cheating, and stealing, to such a degree that civil society is undermined,
The “off-shoring” was just one symptom.
Another has been the destruction of trust because clever shits turn people against one another.
You may recall that Mencken talked specifically about that, several times.
That’s for starters (as Trump might say).
The details have to be worked out, but it’s a start.
What do YOU say?
Did you work on the aircraft industry, old geezer?
If so, where?
Yes, Perot was the only one.
And those of us listening heard that “great sucking sound”.
I talked to a number of politicians , in the late middle nineties, (one of whom came up with that “magic bullet” theory), about the housing industry, which clearly was a big pumped up bubble, based on nothing but speculation, just waiting to burst (l was in the carpentry side, high-end finish work, by that time), but they did not want to hear anything about it, said that I hadn’t a clue and that everything was hunky dory. We know how that turned out.
So, you’ve a very interesting Russian heritage?
When did your Russian forebears come to the U$.
You said you grew up in California.
Do you still live on the Left Coast?
Did you actually watch that “debate”?
Surely you don’t think that I consider the Democrats capable of much besides sucking up to money and wanting more wars.
Now, we disagree about that war business, as I agree with old General Smedley Butler, who said that war is a racket. And has been about corporate interests since Hawaii was “annexed”.
So, I was pleased (and, frankly, surprised) to see that Gabbard did as well as she did.
Beyond that it was poor grade kabuki, I have no doubt.
If I recall, correctly, Mencken was not a fan of war and opposed U$ involvement in both World Wars.
Don’t be bloody silly.
Advice aimed at Old Geezer
First question: What democracy? As in the US, albeit that the structures are rather different, the vox populi has *very* little or *no* say in what their government actually does, enacts, puts into motion. The slow, deliberate Thatcherite-Blairite destruction of the NHS is the shining example of that (couldn’t be a full on frontal take down because most of the ordinary Tory party supporters were also supporters of the NHS, so it had to be effected through underhanded methods that slowly but surely undermined its ability to function well).
Second: Have you been reading/watching/listening to a lot of MSM propaganda or summat? *What* Russian interference/collusion/meddling – whatever?
WHY aren’t you concerned about the real interference, meddling, collusion of the USA and Israel in UK politics and policies????
my wife was initially quite worked up about russian interference in our democracy. i smiled and replied, “ yup, the russians made facebook make me make you vote for DJT, and that is why he won “. she calmed down a little.
the reason the “intellectual” left got all worked up about russian influence in our democracy was this was the first time the left got screwed because of it. the russians have been interfering in western democracies for close to 90 years.
hmmm….. now we need to worry about the descendants of egyptian slaves. they’re the real danger, aren’t they ?
dear dreamboat annie, ( that was such a beautiful song, wasn’t it ? )
my guess is you would be even more dangerous if 6 million or so of your relatives got cooked overdone.
Is this any worse than the American CIA overthrowing democratically-elected governments, such as Allende’s Chile in 1973?
Also, various articles at ConsortiumNews have been saying again and again that Russia did not interfere in the US elections in 2016. One does not need to be a Russophile to see that it’s the other way around (i.e. that the US has been interfering in other countries’ governments).
Much appreciated article, Craig Murray.
One hopes your stellar advice and accompanying wee educational enlightenment might be taken to heart and then on to action.
Just this morning, I had been wondering if Corbyn’s critical moment might be frittered away.
You reassure me that all is not yet lost.
However, Corbyn’s position on Brexit, at least based on such information as is available to me, still seems to be, a do-over vote, to see what folks REALLY think they want.
Genuine change from more of the same old crap you have just catalogued, it would appear, is the desire and, after all this wasted Tory-time, with Boris about to be annoited and almost certain to make even more of a muck of things, the actions you call for are critical. However, why does not Corbyn speak, more directly, by some means, to the people instead of jousting with outgoing Theresa May?
Your political system appears, to me, quite as stultified as ours, in many ways, and that may explain why Corbyn does not address the needs of the people more directly, yet your system seems more likely to provide, in Corbyn, an actual way out of the morass of corruption and toward a sustainable civil society benefitting the many than our tired old Legacy Duopoly may ever permit, yet your media continue the slander of Corbyn as anti-Semitic even as Boris apparently has much of the Jewish vote of London in his back pocket, or so I have read.
When might actual new elections be called? What is required for such elections to take place?
It could well be that I simply do not grasp nuanced aspects of what looks like a dance macabre on this side of the pond.
There is no particular reason to call for the new elections, but a passing possibility that whoever will become a new Tory leader will fail to get a “better exit agreement”, declare “exit now, figure details later” that so far seems to have a guaranteed opposition of a section of Conservatives, and THAT could lead to a parliamentary vote for new elections.
Corbyn decisive? Ha ha ha!