It’s not UKIP we need fear, it’s fear itself

Just gone 9am, UKIP’s won 90 out of 1,533 council seats declared, about 5.87% of seats. Not much of very little is still fuck all, and they’ll remain a minority party – the real fear is the utter cravenness of the other party leaders who’ll clone themselves on UKIP’s racist demagoguery all the more. None of them actually believe in anything, all they believe is ‘principles without power’ are worthless. As Tony Blair said in one of his speeches of his swansong tour of 2006-2007, Labour’s electoral success had in no small part come from its ability to clone if not pre-empt the Tories. ‘Now,’ he continued, ‘there’s a rising threat to our electoral base from the BNP…’ and he left the thought hanging. Soon enough the likes of Margaret Hodge were demanding local homes for local people, ID cards were needed to sort us honest citizens from benefit-scrounging, NHS-piss-taking foreigners, foreign students were worthy of greater surveillance on campus, while the criteria non-EU students had to meet to come were raised.
I don’t know what the point of power is however if you’ve no principles. What kind of definition of power is it if you’re only ever trying to pre-empt your opponents? When Blair and Brown were in office, the Tories in opposition still got any number of their policies through thanks to Labour’s utterly cynical policy hijackings, the Tories’ frustration being only that Labour were taking the credit for their ideas.

The real danger comes not from UKIP but from these violently unprincipled wankers shitting bricks over the antics of a psychotic old drunk, and deciding that’s how they should also behave to remain popular.


Future of REAL PERSON in doubt

You know I can’t help but think the reporter’s somewhat missed where the real tragedy may be here…

The Future Of Wallace And Gromit In Doubt Nick Park, the creator and director of Wallace and Gromit, thinks his animated double act may never return to our screens. The frail health of actor Peter Sallis, who voices the enterprising inventor Wallace, casts a shadow over the future of the series.

Holy cow – the telly’s blown up!

We were watching a wonderful documentary about Alan Bennett, observations from a 1980s hotel, eee, ooo, all doilies and cake stands, perfect Sunday night TV and not the suicide kind, when the image on the TV screen suddenly contracted in size, as if the life within the thing were moving away from us and was exiting out the back of the telly … then the image folded in on itself into a grey line that disappeared, and the screen went black, and a very light haze of smoke came out the rear, smelling of burnt electrics and dust.

And that was it. This big bulbous cathode tube job dating from the middle of the John Major years had finally bought the farm. Or had it? Who could we call to come diagnose its ailment, and maybe restore it to full health? Time was when we would have a repair man round, there was a guy who lived in the next street from us in London, a radio fanatic called Gerald who looked like the professor off the Muppet Show and whose entire house was a radio museum, and who begrudgingly fixed TVs. He was regularly round, about once a month it seemed, in between power cuts, usually when the TV picture refused to stabilise and it just zipped diagonally along, and he’d come take the back off the TV, fiddle with this and that, and after a few minutes all was well and he’d get a large blue fiver for his trouble. Why we never cashed in on an ex-rental TV from OTV I don’t know, but we were doomed to miss that ship.

No such loving care for our 20″ Phillips jobby. No-one to call, not even to administer last rites. Its last phut would be its last anything, we decided, debating whether only to keep it inside or put it outside before dumping it the next day. Inside risked it spontaneously catching fire, outside meant certain death as it’d be rained on. But dead it was … dead it would be. Outside it went. Rained on it was. So good it did not look.

No more Channel Four news. No more Question Time. No more bleach-coloured ads with ukulele music, or Sue Perkins presenting The Great Gutter Unblock Off with plinky-plunk string music. No more Eastenders giving each other stress-induced cancer by virtue of being just epically miserable bastards. No more people crying because someone said they liked their cake. No more Goggle Box. Of course most of this I could yet subject myself to by way of iplayer etc, but I’d have to actively search these things out, not just allow myself to be barraged with total crap because that was all that was on when I turned on the telly. We were enjoying Alan Bennett, so that was sad to miss the end of that, but I suspect the death of the TV is something of which he’d approve.

Morals? Justice? MONEY

Veteran BBC DJ quits (was he forced to?) over inadvertently putting on song with the word ‘nigger’ in it.

Veteran BBC presenter Jeremy Clarkson kept on after knowingly, ‘humourously’ in his tiny mind, saying the word within a schoolyard ditty – before doing the take again. Oh but he ‘loathes’ the word – bullshit. Where in that recording is any sense of ‘OMG what have I did oh shit bloody hell oops I said it?’

We all know – the issue is simply that David Lowe isn’t worth millions of pounds to the Beeb. Clarkson is, and that’s where the justice lies, and that’s why the BBC is as venal an entity as any other corrupted institute these days in this fetid money-obsessed land where rules only apply to those who don’t earn shitloads of cash.

(Curiously enough Jimmy Saville apparently managed to stave off investigations into his BBC-enabled evil by way of citing the threat it’d pose to the millions he raised for ‘good works’ …).

And yet for decades now it’s the all-corrupting incentive of profit that we’ve been exhorted and forced to accept as the over-riding principle of governance for every facet of our lives.

And if you earn enough money for the right people, then indeed, you get to live on some elevated plane where nothing else, morals or laws, actually matter, and it’s the people who dwell in such a moral vacuum that make the decisions … ahhh… the pieces fall into place.

Free money for Cameron AND the NSA!

I thought the US intelligence agencies could track any Islamist and their children by their mobile phones and deliver missiles by drone-express upon them all, anywhere in the world? Surely they would do too, if slave trafficking is such a money spinner for Boko? Free money for the NSA in getting the public behind their surveillance if they applied it to situations like this, easily persuade the world that monitoring all social media and telephone traffic is a good thing?

It’s all very nice and good for Mrs Obama and Cameron to take up the fight against this with bits of A4 paper and hashtags, but … what does that gain, apart from ‘Hey – I care!’ points for them?

In Which We Serve

Just saw In Which We Serve on BBC4, a 1942 film that my grandparents would have seen at the cinema when they were already a few years younger than I am now. I remember seeing this film on telly some Sunday afternoon in my youth, taking it for what it was, some black and white bit of nostalgia with some nice footage of Spitfires like at an airshow, and no relevance to anyone. But my grandparents would have probably seen it at the Brixton ABC when it came out, when it was the film to go and see, if not the only thing on at the time. The lives of ordinary people in the film, young men who in civilian life worked as shop assistants or clerks or down the mines, finding themselves spending months on ships, 20 feet below the Atlantic waterline waiting for a torpedo to come through the wall, while their families were at home waiting for a bomb to come through the roof … this was all real. These were the people my grandparents knew, suffering the perils that my grandparents suffered. To them those Spitfires weren’t avionic sports cars, but were cutting edge weaponry, and were all that stood between Britain and Hitler. They’d have known what it meant when 36 crewmen are killed in a battle ultimately taken to be ‘a bad night’ for the ship, amid 10s of millions of people fighting and dying worldwide.

How would they have felt to leave the Woodbine haze of the cinema and step into the sooty sunlight of London, to walk the two miles home and be relieved to find the street hadn’t been flattened while they were out. Years of this they went through. Air raids that started out with Heinkel 111 bombers, and ended just a few years later with V2s, crewless missiles so fast you couldn’t hear them coming before they wiped out the Marks & Spencers on the high st, incidentally killing a line of schoolchildren at the bus-stop outside, in the name of advancing the Master Race.

Ordinary people, for whom the film reflected in black and white the realities they’d remember forever in violent colour. But I never heard them complain or go on about it.

Clarkson calling Clifford

Ron Atkinson was caught saying the word nigger, he said it, off-camera, but he said it, and got done nonetheless, losing punditry posts at the BBC and the Guardian. He himself couldn’t believe he’d said it. This was a man who’d done a great deal to advance black players in football, but … he crossed a line.

So the same punishment must befall Clarkson, who advances himself and himself alone with professional attention-seeking by sailing as close to the winds of racism as possible, be it calling Burmese ‘slopes’ or having a dig at Mexicans, now he’s stepped on his own landmine. Notwithstanding what evil shite Murdoch’s papers are prepared to brook, surely the BBC cannot tolerate this?

Or maybe they can, cos *titter* humourous ol’ farty Clarky’s Top Gear is worth £100s of millions as a franchise. Well, it was, but surely if you go around systematically alienating your audience you somewhat devalue the product? Maybe the Beeb should quit while it’s ahead and drop the Fat One before he ruins the global reputation of the Corporation.

It’s not like they’re going to be able to call Max Clifford to sort the publicity on this one. But I think Clifford is the other half of the problem of the BBC, he covers up for the monsters that the sycophants at the Corp helps create and foster as ‘talent’. From Jimmy Saville and Stuart Hall through Janet Street-Porter and Jonathan Ross’s dirty phone calls, they’re ‘talent’, to be spoilt and pampered and pandered to no matter how abusive they are, and how much worse this makes them.