+ I had the pleasure of a brief escape from the English Madness this week on a ‘mini break’ in Bruges. I’d recommend it. It is uplifting to spend a day or two not understanding what people are talking about, especially when, of course, their only topic of conversation must be the English Madness. What else could possibly be going on in their lives, these Europeans?
+ But what goes up must come down, and back in blighted Blighty the Guardian continues its anti-Corbyn campaign. Yesterday its main headline was “Dozens more will testify about Labour anti-semitism”. Now if I told you that, for example my apple tree had grown dozens of apples, what kind of impression would you have of the actual quantity? Unspecified ‘dozens’ might mean more than 30, might it not, especially if my apple tree is shall we say measured in a metric of 500,000. But a Guardian headline merely blaring out about 30 new complaints (the actual number buried in the text) doesn’t sound as shocking does it? Given the threefold sources for this story included a) unnamed b) the now discredited Jewish Labour Movement and c) the now utterly discredited Tom Watson MP the whole piece smells of vendetta. You don't need to wear a deerstalker to deduce that one.
+ I was away when the BBC’s Panorama aired its ‘exposé’ of Labour ‘anti-Semitism’ problem, and what I’ve read about it since easily shows it up to be part of this persistent attempt to destroy Corbyn’s leadership. Jonathan Cook has written an excellent piece about this here, so I won’t go into it. Except to say that the Guardian’s Chief Anti-Corbyn Cheerleader Jonathan Freedland had a comment piece today which referenced the Panorama programme as if it were gospel. In doing so he discredits his own cause but also comes up with a set of specious arguments, similarly (as ever) not grounded in evidence. He attacks the line that if Labour is representative of British society as whole, it is bound to contain a number of anti-semites. He suggests that any organisation that draws its membership from society ‘as a whole’ might also claim the same defence as fallacious, for example, given that carnivores are well represented in society as a whole, why aren’t there carnivores in the Vegetarian Society? This curious analogy doesn’t stand up of course—except one might wonder if there actually were carnivores in the Vegetarian Society, what might their motive be? It doesn’t seem to cross Freedland’s mind whether organisations could be infiltrated by its enemies. To think of another example, haven’t we heard about UKIP members infiltrating the Tory Party to try to get remain Tory MPs deselected? Suggesting this possibility doesn’t make me a conspiracy theorist. It’s a recognition that duplicitous shit goes on in the real world, as well as the virtual reality of the anonymous unsocial media.
+ I wonder if there’s a campaign by Native Americans to gain their own statehood? One of the most persecuted groups in humanity’s history (if not the most persecuted) surely have as much claim on statehood as Israel has (and I support the right of Israel to exist). Perhaps the whole of e.g. the Dakotas should be described as a Native American country, and maybe that would lead to the dispossession of land of some existing residents—but wouldn’t that simply be a recognition of the huge injustice suffered by the original occupants of that land? I’m not suggesting North and South Dakota is where Native Americans would choose to set up a new country, since practically any of the 50 states would do. This thought is partially inspired by the fact that the U.S. government continues its practice of treating the original Americans with disdain, as they try to push through the Dakota Access oil pipeline against the wishes of those whose historic lands it traverses.