Now all of these rights are at risk – which of them do you want to lose? Which do you want other people to lose?
Would you like suspected foreign criminals to be deported without conviction in court?
Would you like to go to prison for crimes you were merely suspected of without being found guilty?
If your answers to those questions are different you’re falling for the propaganda.
Home secretary Priti Patel even stands by a system of immigration that would have excluded her own parents who were kicked out of Uganda during Idi Amin’s purges and fled here for their own safety.
She’s also presiding over the mass deportation of EU and other immigrants, many of whom have lived their entire lives, or close to their entire lives here in the UK.
Those granted leave to remain will be forced to do so under new regulations effectively making them second class citizens in the land they have always called home. Swap the word Jew for Muslim and it’s a move that could have been taken straight from Adolf Hitler’s 25 point plan.
I’ve just made a pretty big claim, some might say an extraordinary claim and extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Just what makes me imagine that this society, this land of my birth is becoming the very thing we opposed not only in wartime but on British streets as well?
This is the land of Cable Street, of Brick Lane where thousands of anti-fasciststook to the streets to oppose Mosley’s Blackshirts and Griffin’s National Front.
It’s the land of the Levellers, the Chartists, of Magna Carta and the Battle of Peterloo where working class artesans gathered peacefully to hear speeches against an oppressive British government and were massacred, by order of that government and the king, at swordpoint by local yeomanry and cavalry soldiers.
So, before we get too smug about our anti-fascist national credentials we should also bear in mind that in each of those other famous conflicts the police, the establishment and the government sided with the fash.
The people in power followed the money, as they often do.
And in recent years that money has been in the hands of far right donors, think tanks and agitators from Breitbart to Cambridge Analytica, from Eugenicist Dominic Cummings to disaster capitalists like Arron Banks and Jacob Rees-Mogg.
How did Adolf Hitler and his small band of National Socialists manage to take a sophisticated, developed and educated nation and turn it into a fascist state ready to march roughshod over the rights, the lives and even the existence of others?
This short film aims to answer that question, not only from a historical perspective but from a current affairs point of view too.
For over a decade now I’ve been speaking to anyone who’s prepared to listen about the path we’re on in modern UK – and not just here – across the developed world.
This isn’t about Godwin’s law, the internet trope that claims every disagreement ends with the loser accusing everyone else of Nazism. There are Nazis in UK but they’re pretty few and far between.
This is about the way that ordinary people, people who are far from Nazi are being duped by cynical provocateurs, rabble rousers and even politicians into accepting Nazi principles without even realising it.
It’s an expose – not an accusation. It’s a heartfelt plea to the millions of decent people in my beloved United Kingdom to stop for a moment, to take stock and to see where we’re headed.
So here’s the thing. It’s New Year’s day 2020 and like many of us I struggle to think of much to be optimistic about for the year or even the decade ahead. Tory austerity will continue, most likely at an accelerated pace and even more people seem likely to fall into poverty with an ever shrinking social safety net to support them. I know I’m not the only one who worries about this today because I see my contacts on social media saying exactly the same. That’s the Facebook echo chamber at work, I imagine.
But let’s just take a breath. Pause for thought and see if we can’t make a little better use of our characteristic, socialist compassion.
I have long believed that the difference between the right and the left is this. The right looks after its own, be they defined through race, religion, nationality or social class whereas the left wants to make the world better and fairer for everyone. And that includes the people we might be angry with as the country embarks on another decade of Tory inequality.
Too many of us are promising never to befriend a Tory voter again. Too many of us are venting our anger, our sense of betrayal even on our working class neighbours who voted Tory, LibDem or worse. I understand that anger. I feel it too. But it’s not what we should be about and it certainly won’t help restore fairness and decency to the UK.
We’re all fallible, even us and so are our neighbours. In my view nothing demonstrates that fallibility more than the recent election result. Our friends and neighbours have just voted for austerity, privatisation of public services, greater inequality and the destruction it working class communities across the land. And we’re all going to suffer for it – including them.
If we are to survive the next few years with our rights intact and our people protected we have to come together. That’s not just an option, it’s a necessity. We need to heal our broken communities and quickly because the Tories aren’t hanging around. And we’ll never do that by ostracizing our neighbours because they made a mistake, a mistake fuelled by the concerted efforts of the mainstream media and a right wing network that wouldn’t know the truth if it came up and bit them!
Personally I’ve only ever disowned a single relative and that’s not because he’s a Tory. It’s because he wants to treat Muslims, refugees and asylum seekers as less than human. He even claimed to want to sit stop the white cliffs with a machine gun and execute desperate refugees. Him, I disowned years ago but I won’t be rejecting anyone for voting Tory, angry and disappointed that I am.
What a decade it’s been. We began 2010 in the throes of recession thanks to a global recession that began in 2008 with the American sub-prime mortgage and investment fiasco and quickly spread across the globe. By 2010 our economy here in UK had suffered massive damage but we had a working welfare state to protect our citizens from the worst of the crisis.
Then, in May of 2010 the real British catastrophe began, The ConDem government introduced austerity and so began a decade long process of starving our social safety net of funds while throwing massive tax cuts at the wealthy. Ten years on and our vital services are almost unrecognisable, they’re so depleted by years of Tory and LibDem cuts and back door privatisation. And now, in the closing weeks of 2019 a new disaster has begun to bite.
Boris Johnson has such a huge parliamentary majority that he can do whatever he wants and make no mistake, he will. He’s already made it clear that he plans to ‘review’ the relationship between the government, parliament and the judiciary in such a way that he and his ministers will be able to rewrite any law they choose without recourse to anyone – not even the law. Privatisation of the NHS is increasing quickly now and manifesto promises about minimum wage rises and working peoples’ rights are already being fudged. The new decade looks set to be a whole lot worse than the one we’ve just left.
If this nation is to survive the next ten years and still retain even a modicum of decency, if we are to maintain anything close to the social safety net we have taken for granted for so many years we need to come together as one. We need to put the differences of the last few years aside, forget the petty prejudices and paranoia centering around race, religion, country of origin or social status and work together for the good of the whole community.
Many of us are working hard to do just that. Join us – help keep UK society together until the storm of this far right government is over. It’s a storm we need to face together or few of us will survive it at all.
It’s a common phenomenon. Sick and tired of hearing far right tropes at work, in the pub, on social media and pretty much everywhere else, decent people, armed with only a sense of justice and the best of intentions eventually decide that is enough is enough and decide to give the Fash a piece of their mind. And then the trouble starts.
Like trench warfare but without the guns, like the German assault on Verdun or General Winter’s relentless destruction of Napoleon’s forces in Russia, the war of attrition begins. Anyone daring to suggest that desperate refugees might need some help or who has the temerity to suggest that Nigel Farage might not have the best interests of the working class at heart is instantly depicted as (tick as appropriate)
ÿA closet Muslim
ÿA race traitor
Such people are apparently deserving of (tick as appropriate)
ÿDeath by hanging
ÿLife imprisonment (without parole)
ÿDeath by firing squad
ÿDeath by various other creative but ultimately highly impractical alternative methods.
Understandably enough, when faced with these daily tirades from relatives and former friends, as well as complete strangers our intrepid heroes aren’t always as indefatigable as they might have hoped. It’s easy to become despondent in the face of so much undeserved abuse for the crime of showing a little compassion and understanding. The decent people grow tired. They develop Fash Fatigue.
But take heart. This little article is intended to help lift the spirits of the decent folk. The ordinary people who know intuitively that so much bitterness and hatred is the wrong way to go. Those who can see the need for a little compassion in the world, who aren’t frightened of the fact that not everyone enjoys Jellied eels and Melton Mowbray pork pies, who are quite able to walk past a Mosque or a Synagogue without feeling the need to set it alight.
If you don’t see brown people as the enemy. If you understand how ludicrous the idea of miscegenation and race replacement is. If you can’t stop laughing whenever anyone seriously suggests that white genocide is a thing then this is for you.
Keep your chin up, keep plodding on and have faith in the fact that British society, despite having lost its way for a brief moment in time, is better than all that.
We’ve come a long way in the last 100 years. Yes, it’s true that racism and fascism is rearing its ugly head again within these islands but it’s only a blip. It’s only ever a blip when this happens. Hold your nerve. Another few years will see the current batch of racist, fascist bully boys fade into the same insignificance their predecessors of the National Front, the British National Party, the English Defence League and the New British Union of Fascists currently ‘enjoy’.
Far right parties never last here. We gave Mosley and his Black-shirts short shrift in the 1930s, we laughed the NF and the BNP into obscurity in the 70s, 80s and 90s and we’ll ridicule UKIP and the Brexit Party into oblivion too.Not that this is a Brexit issue per se.
There are many non-racist, non-fascist Brits who want us to leave Europe and that’s OK. That’s democracy. But I have never met a single fash who didn’t want us out of Europe. I’ve never met a single UKIP or Brexit Party leader who cared about anyone but himself and I never heard of a UKIP or Brexit party leader whose political career isn’t smeared with the foul-smelling defecant of racism and far right bigotry.
So when you get despondent and exhausted by Fash fatigue, take heart. The journey is never as long as it seems and most of the ordinary Brits screaming abuse at you aren’t really the hard-core Fash they appear to be. They’re our brothers and sisters who, duped by a sustained and deceitful media campaign have come to believe that the only way to ‘save’ UK is to close our borders, to leave the EU and to vote tory. But they’re not the enemy. They’re ‘us’. They’re our friends and neighbours and they will come to their senses soon enough.
Even now, for the most part they genuinely want what’s best for everyone. They’re not usually racist and they’re not usually fascist. But they are for the moment sitting on a tiresome, abusive bandwagon because they haven’t yet sussed where it’s heading. They’ll jump back off it soon enough. When that happens it’ll be up to us to rebuild the bridges that are currently burning. It’ll be up to us to realise that only a small minority of the apparent Fash really are Fash. The rest are decent people who’ve been swept up in the storm. If the UK is ever to get beyond this conflict, this divisive, bloodthirsty civil cold war it’ll be up to us, the decent people to make the first move.
One day, in the not too distant future, we will need to reunite our nation or lose the rights our ancestors fought and died to win for us. The people of Britain, especially the working class cannot survive if we remain divided.
So don’t worry about your Fash fatigue. Take a break – do something enjoyable and calming. Read a book and then, when you can, come on back and keep on arguing for peace, for compassion and for good sense to prevail.
Dick Braine is the latest UKIP leader to feel his party’s paranoid wrath. Well, that’s hardly a surprise. When you head up a paranoid organisation, full of paranoid people you really shouldn’t be surprised when they become as paranoid about you as you are.
This is why far right nationalist and racist groups keep falling out with each other. They’re all paranoid fuckwits! If they weren’t paranoid they wouldn’t be nationalists or racists.