There’s some reportage in the UK about the organisers of the Glastonbury festival banning the screening of a film--Oh Jeremy Corbyn the Big Lie—which regurgitates claims that Corbyn was stitched up. Apparently the organisers were threatened with the big anti-Semitism stick, and folded. This, despite Corbyn’s huge welcome by the crowd at a previous festival. Well, Glastonbury is just another big business, isn’t it—let’s not expect any actual lefty backbone there. A comment in the film has interested me, and it is something picked up by onetime Corbyn supporter, now wannabe Starmer MP, the journo Paul Mason. This is that Starmer ’worked with the CIA.’ This, according to Mason amounts to one of those silly conspiracy theories, totally devoid of evidence. As a conspiracy theory I don’t think it stands up, but as a nexus theory it’s got legs. By this I mean Starmer sits atop a conflation of establishment interests, so, e.g. when he was DPP he did what he could to facilitate the appalling judicial treatment of Julian Assange which continues to this day. Whether the CIA had anything to pass on to Starmer about Assange—who knows? It’s not inconceivable, is it? But it wouldn’t amount to a ’conspiracy,’ if it happened it would simply be a systemic routine. So in this regard the film doesn’t quite live up to Mason’s condemnation. He simply misses the point.
Perhaps of more interest to those who are wary of the Starmeroid clan is the story in today’s Financial Times about Peter (‘petie’) Mandelson’s links with the late paedophile Jeffrey Epstein. It is clear from the article that ’petie’ (as Epstein called Mandelson) and Mandy were good friends (a reproduced picture of a birthday celebration speaks a thousand words). Even when Epstein was in jail, Mandy (even as a serving minister of the Crown) enjoyed his hospitality, staying in Epstein’s house in New York. Does this explain why Mandy was so accommodating of the ‘filthy rich?’ Mandy stayed at Epstein’s house in June, 2009. Their relationship had already lasted several years, and judging by the FT article, Epstein had worked Mandy for a number of favours (that I have to say is my reading of the article). So I thought I would check out the index of Mandy’s book The Third Man (first published in 2010) for a mention of Epstein. Nothing, of course, despite the paperback edition suggesting it ‘Includes revealing new chapter.’ Well, not revealing at all then.
Both of the above stories in their own way give a contemporary gloss to Adam Smith’s great insight ‘People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.’ That word again, conspiracy. The ‘trade’ in today’s cases is the maintenance of the elite.
The FT article can be read here: