This Christmas send the gift of understanding to your nearest and dearest by exposing the vilest of our political establishment. This Christmas card, created by Cold War Steve, casts the likes of Farage, Rees-Mogg and my own MP, Mark Jenkinson in their true, narrow-minded and mean-spirited colours. Even better, 100% of the profits from sale of the cards goes to the charity ‘Refugee action’ whose work supports those desperate individuals who so many of our politicians would abandon despite our international commitments and legal obligations.
I’ll be off to pop one in the post to my local constituency tory club shortly. I’m sure many of them will enjoy the joke just as much as the rest of us will.
After the end of World War 1, as countries across the globe took stock of the calamity that had befallen them, nation after nation made a commitment to honour the dream that so many serving soldiers, sailors and airmen had given their lives for.
As the reasons for the conflict became clearer to ordinary people the phrase ‘Lest we forget’ came to signify not only the millions of lives cut short but also the motivations and political ambitions of those who brought them to war in the first place. Nationalistic pride, a belief in our own mythical, almost mystical superiority and contempt for ‘Johnny foreigner’ bred an arrogance that was at once both isolationist and entitled.
Coupled with the unbridled political ambition of a few key players both in and out of government, the stage was (is) set for a conflict of gargantuan, of epic proportions.
Such was the situation in the run up to August 1914.
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.
British Islamophobes love to point out that since Islam isn’t a race, they can’t be accused of racism when they persecute Muslims.
Congratulations – you’ve stated the obvious. Well done!
However… it’s not quite as simple as that.
The United Nations has defined anti-Islamic sentiment as racism in the same way that it defines anti-Jewish feelings as racism. Both are different forms of anti-Semitism and both are viewed technically as racism in international law.
So yes – you’ve stated the obvious in one sense but missed the point in another.
Then there’s the dog-whistle code used by many European racists, including British racists to equate Muslim with ‘brown people’. They can’t legally criticize black or brown people on the grounds of colour so they use religious adherence and criticise religious practices instead. Quite inconsistently, as it happens.
For example, depending upon their particular prejudices they might criticise Muslim Halal but have no opinion on Jewish Kosher.
They’ll complain about Muslim Hijabs but not Christian head coverings found in Christian cultures across the world – including among European Nuns.
They’ll criticize Sharia councils but ignore Jewish Beth-Din or Christian Fundamentalist ‘courts’ which perform exactly the same function and have just as little weight in public law.
And what does all this amount to? Oh yes – religious discrimination which, by the way is also illegal.
You see it’s OK to criticise ideas, including religious ideas, but people have rights. When you start to persecute the people you’re breaking the law – whether you personally define it as racism or not. You’re also displaying your own mean-spirited, small-minded stupidity for all to see. Now why on earth would you want to show your arse like that?
I’m a British citizen. I’m also an atheist. I used to be a Christian but I changed my mind in 1993 and have never been tempted to return to Christianity or indeed any religion whatsoever. Does that mean I’m no longer British?
Let’s just think this through, shall we?
I was a Christian because I was brought up to be a Christian. It wasn’t my idea – my parents chose my religion and the Church of England claimed me as a member of their congregation long before I had a chance to think it through for myself. I was a Christian because of somebody else’s choice: Because of somebody else’s rules.
That’s what it means to claim that Britain is a Christian country. Other people used to be Christian and they decided in advance that the rest of us would be Christian too. Some people accepted that label and even fewer accepted the lifestyle and beliefs associated with it but the vast majority did not.
I do not know a single right-winger, let alone far-right winger who follows the religion based upon Jesus Christ. Not a single right-winger that I’ve ever met demonstrates compassion for the poor or concern for those who are disadvantaged. I’ve never come across a single racist who understands empathy or would follow the instructions of the Nazarene to sell all that they own and give the money to the poor.
So far as I can see, those who claim this is a Christian country do so only to justify their hatred of those who follow other beliefs. They show no understanding nor consideration for Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, Hindus or anyone else. Theirs is a Christianity of convenience behind which they conceal their hatred and mean-spirited, even murderous stupidity.
As it happens, I do know some perfectly nice, reasonable, charitable and compassionate Christians but none of them are far right. Actually none of them are even just ‘right wing’ in its moderate sense. They may vote tory occasionally but not because they agree with tory policies so much as because they don’t really take an interest in politics and don’t quite understand what conservative ideology is. But I don’t know a single Racist, fascist, neoliberal or neoNazi who has any legitimate claim on the writings of the New Testament.
I’ve come across neo-Nazis who want to machine gun desperate refugees from the whilte cliffs of Dover. I’ve debated with Fascists who want to deny trade to Muslims, thus destroying their livelihoods and forcing them out of UK. I’ve argued with far right thugs who think it’s appropriate to assault hijabi women on the streets or even to throw petrol bombs at shops owned by brown people but I’ve never met a single one of them who knows how to forgive or to turn the other cheek.
So let’s give the far right their way. Let’s give them their entire argument right now.
Let’s say that this really is a Christian country.
And then we can watch them all take their anti-Christian barbarity somewhere else.
If Britain is a Christian country then there’s no room for you here. Off you go – make some space for the real Christians to house more refugees.
One of the biggest ironies to come out of the modern far right is their claim to support the principles of freedom of speech. Of course, these modern incarnations of Nazi and fascist bully boys have no interest in freedom of speech at all. They only want freedom for their own speech. This is a far cry from the lofty ideal attributed to Voltaire (but never actually written by him)…
“I disagree with what you have to say but I will fight to the death to defend your right to say it.”
On the contrary these snowflakes are so frightened of other peoples’ words they’re actually prepared to fight to the death to remove their right to say it. That’s not freedom of speech – that’s the key stepping stone on the way to authoritarianism, totalitarianism and dictatorship.
It’s no coincidence that in George Orwell’s fictional, fascist Britain, ‘1984’ control of the people began with control of the language and with the topics that could be discussed. That’s how fascism progresses.
If you really care about Freedom of speech, stop clamouring for the death penalty for those who disagree with you and who dare to say so out loud. Have a look at the short video linked to this post. Then you might understand why so many of us on the left are so tired of your snowflakery and your constant attempt to turn UK into a giant ‘safe-space’ where nobody disagrees with you.
It seems ridiculous to me for anyone on then right wing of politics to claim to represent the working class. The right has always been about exploitation, about keeping us, the riff raff in our place and about squeezing every last drop of profit from us that they can get away with. That’s why the working class has always opposed the right – because it’s the right that uses our hard work to enrich others. This was obvious once but over the years the inequalities of life have become so normalised, so expected that many people think they’re inevitable. But they’re not.
Why should it be inevitable, for example that business owners can earn hundreds of thousands a year whilst their employees survive on subsistence wages?
Why should it be inevitable that these same business owners pay so little tax whilst their employees cannot access the public services they need because the country hasn’t the funds to provide for them?
Why is it that the people who do the hard work, put in the long hours for minimum wage, aren’t the ones who see the rewards from their labours?
These are the questions that the left want addressed and that’s why socialist parties insist upon better wages for working people. Thast’s why we demand proper taxation strategies to ensure that those at the top of the income ladder pay something toward helping those at the bottom. After all – they’re not the only people who invest in businesses.
As the late, great, Tony Benn once remarked…
“Your people invest their money… My people invest their lives.”
When the right wingers oppose the left they’re not doing so on behalf of the working class – they’re undermining us.
When the right wing oppose brown people or Muslims, Poles or LBQT citizens they’re not supporting the working class – they’re dividing it. This is the strategy of the cynical ‘man’ at the top of the tree. He knows that a united working class could easily force him to accept a fairer system so he works hard to keep us at each-others’ throats. And the stupid little neoNazi with his EDL tattoo or his Britain First mug spreading hatred between working people of different races or creeds is part of that machinery of oppression.
The real enemy of the working class is the wealthy tax avoider with his offshore account who leeches funds earned by our labour out of the only economy that could help improve our situations.
When you give tax relief to working people they spend it – that money goes back into the economy and other businesses prosper, local traders and local employees start to feel more confident and their money circulates. Everyone gets wealthier. When you give it to the rich banker he just puts it with the rest of his unnecessary pile in the Cayman Islands and forgets about it.
The far right claim to represent the working class whilst supporting right-wing policies and policy-makers such as our present government whose ministers gorge themselves whilst ordinary people are forced into destitution. Our conservative ‘masters’ vote to reduce benefits payments for the most needy and yet give themselves a ten grand bonus just for staying at home. When you support these nest-featherers you do not represent the working class.
The right wing has normalised its abuses so much that many of our own people think it’s inevitable that working peoples’ children should go hungry over Christmas and that a 10% tax cut for millionaires is just how it ought to be. Even the most obviously weak excuses don’t demonstrate just how badly they’re being played by a cynical financial elite.
And they call us ‘cucks’!
These people don’t represent the working class – they undermine it by falling for the divide and conquer politics of those who purport to be our ‘betters’. And in doing so they maintain the very system that treated them so unfairly and made them so very angry in the first place.
They’re on the wrong side and they don’t even know it!
The fash don’t often say this so blatantly but it’s very clearly what they mean when they offer violence to get their political way. When they talk about what they want to do to those who oppose them they clearly are drawing upon the mindset that tells them their entitlement comes from their physical strength. When gangs of swastika clad thugs terrorize the streets of UK, Europe and America they’re not inviting people to discuss policies, they’re threatening to crush all opposition.
And they have the cheek to call themselves democratic. It’s always worth pointing that out.
The usual retort is that lefties won’t talk to them. They’ll witter on about freedom of speech which is covered later in the series. A fun response is often to explain that you’re willing to talk it through with them right now… and then see if they can.
The sad fact is that most of them don’t understand the first thing about the ideology they espouse, the development of fascism and neoNazism or the manipulation of information that brought them to accept the current lies of the far right. You won’t win any contests here because the fash will almost certainly just insult you and move on but you will have demonstrated to them just how ill-equipped they are to defend their views and that’s a good start.
For those that suggest that might really is right ask them what they think about Stalin using the mighty soviet machine to kill millions of his own citizens. Then ask what they think of Hitler doing the same to millions of his own, German citizens. They’ll claim that Hitler’s targets weren’t ‘his own’ people which gives you two responses…
Why does that matter?
Did the socialists, trade unionists, Jews and disabled people he persecuted before the war began not have German citizenship, then?
Once again, the aim is to get them to understand that there are holes in their arguments. Many fash won’t have looked into their ideology enough to see those holes in the first place and exposing them to that fact may be the beginning of their road away from hatred.
Okay, let’s begin with a few home truths, shall we?
First of all, they’re not ‘your’ jobs. It’s a global market. If Bexit has taught anything at all over the last few years it’s that. People with the appropriate skills come to this country, just as everyone in the land has wanted (especially the 52%). So unless you’re a trained doctor you really can’t complain that ‘your’ job is being done by that well-respected and highly trained man or woman from another country. It’s not your job, it’s the employer’s job and the employer gives it to the candidate best suited for the aims of the business or organisation.
It may be that this decision is made cynically to save money by paying below minimum standards but if that’s the case then the way to combat it is to join together with the immigrants in a trade union and press for fairness and parity. You won’t solve the problem by turning against your exploited brothers and sisters. They’re not the ones paying low wages – they’re just people, like you trying to make ends meet.
Benefits, eh? I thought it was jobs. That does seem a tad contradictory, especially since most immigrants actually contribute more to the government coffers than they take out. The majority come here to build a better life. Many were gainfully employed until the bombs we sold fell from the sky on to their homes and workplaces. That’s what drove them away – British made weaponry. Weaponry we profited from and continue to profit from.
So no – most immigrants into UK, be they refugee or not, come here to build a better life for themselves by working hard to earn enough to fulfil their responsibilities to their families either here or abroad. Funnily enough it’s what many British emmigrants do only we don’t call them immigrants – we call them ex-pats and nobody seems to complain about them taking jobs or benefits in the Costa del sol. It’s interesting to note just how many Brits have chosen to retire in Spain, Italy or Southern France where they contribute nothing to the local economy but take full advantage of the local healthcare facilities. That’s also part of the global outlook this country appears to be adopting, or do you think that should just be one-way?
What do you mean, ‘Our women’?
When did you gain the right to dictate to women of any race, creed or colour who they should fall in love with? Since when do British women need to gain your consent to have the right to have children?
Get over yourself, you misogynistic piece of shit!
If, like me you’re fed up of listening to the nonsense spouted by racists, neoNazis and other assorted fash then this is for you. I started the project on Sunday October 4th 2020, the 84th anniversary of the Battle of Cable St. It’s my little acknowledgement of the day Mosley and his Blackshirts were beaten back by decent Brits.
I’ve taken some of the more common (and most ridiculous) ‘arguments’ used by far right numpties and turned them into a bingo card. But this is a card with a difference.
Over the next few weeks I’ll be taking each square on the card in turn and providing easy (and generally fairly obvious) counter-arguments that you can use to stop them in their tracks.
Once it’s finished the whole series will be made into a PDF and left in the resources section here at www.lefteyeview.com as a free download.