Monthly Archives: August 2013

Telegraph Comment of the Week (#5)

Another difficult choice with at least five comments in the race.

This isn’t a single comment, it’s a conversation of sorts between a pair of numpties and an interloper who’s trying to talk sense. This was found on Damian Thompson’s blog, which usually tends to attract a fair number of weirdos and cranks.

Convo between numpties

It’s the one whose username is a series of asterisks who writes…

and an awful lot of money could be returned to the UK treasury by selling the BBC to the Arabs, since it is already their principal propaganda outlet in the UK.

…that gets me.

“*****” presumes the BBC is part of some New World Order Eurabian conspiracy to force Sharia law onto us. The BBC isn’t “pro-Arab” at all – unless you’re watching a Bizarro World version of the Beeb.

“Fred Scuttle” makes a sensible point but then “binliedto” comes along and wishes he would “set [himself] on fire” Charming. Are the moderators actually doing their job?

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Filed under Media, Telegraph Comment of the Week, Tory press

Selling War

Is your economy in the khazi? Are you poll ratings low? Have no policies? Well, why not start a war? It worked for others, now it can work for you.

Just look at some of our testimonials!

“War makes me go all gooey inside” – Tony Blair.

“Think of the money” – George W Bush.

“I live for the deaths of others” – Henry Kissinger

“Thanks to my Falklands campaign, I won a landslide election. I highly recommend it to others” – Margaret Thatcher

Remember, all you have to do is tell the public that so-and-so is “killing his own people” with weapons of mass destruction and Bob’s your uncle.

Worried about what the UN might say? Well, there’s no need. Who pays much attention to them anyway? Go ahead and make war. Remember that JP Morgan, Raytheon, Blackwater and Bechtel are there to support you.

If the public don’t believe you or pick holes in your argument, you can always call them “appeasers” and use the example of Hitler as your defence.

War: helping greedy psychopaths to make lots of money for centuries.

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Telegraph Comment of the Week (#4)

The competition for Telegraph Comment of the Week has been fierce with as many as four contenders. These right-wingers really know how to produce the laughs.

This comment from “Spirit_of_Godfrey_of_Bouillon” is the best of the bunch. Hat tip Suusi M-B for this one, which was found on this Telegraph article by Iain Martin.

Godfrey of Bullshit

In case you were wondering, “Godfrey of Bouillon” was one of the Frankish leaders of the disastrous First Crusade. It is highly likely that “Godfrey of Bullshit”, as I prefer to call him, is a nutty nationalist and an idiot Islamophobe.

What I find amusing about this comment, apart from its glaring medical inaccuracy, is its tick box list of right-wing pet hates.

Godfrey of Bullshit, you’re a winner!

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Racism : Rife, Rewarded, Routinely Denied.

I’m reposting this blog, which sort of extends what I was saying about the racist van and those who defend this and the anti-immigration rhetoric of the government and who cite right-wing think tanks like Migration Watch UK as unassailable founts of truth and wisdom.

Neo-Feudal News

Anyone thinking racism, and a fetish for racism, are far from the surface of mainstream politics or media is shown horribly wrong by a series of recent events and coverage.
Make no mistake – the “Go Home” vans, supposedly targeting illegal migrants, were actually aimed at voters who don’t like immigrants (One can’t tell legal status without some investigation, so we’re often talking about dislike of immigrants / immigration generally.)

The chance of an illegal immigrant, having presumably had a difficult, expensive and risky time getting here, thinking “Ok, games up – I’ll turn myself in…” on reading a notice whizzing by that  probably isn’t in their first language…well it’s about as large as the credibility of a “recovery” fuelled by another artificial housing boom.

Yet the Home Office declared the vans were working within a few short days – scant time for collection of even initial data on how…

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Telegraph Comment of the Week (#3)

This one comes from Janet Daley’s blog about the Centre for Policy Studies’ (CPS) evidence-free and non-peer reviewed report that claims the BBC has a “left-wing bias”. Only in your dreams, Janet.

Here’s Daley’s appraisal:

The Centre for Policy Studies has published an impeccably researched report which offers objective statistical evidence of the BBC’s persistent habit of describing (which is to say, effectively dismissing) the proposals of think tanks such as the IEA, the Centre for Social Justice, the Taxpayers’ Alliance, and the CPS itself as emanating from “Rightwing” organisations, while offering up material from Leftwing or Labour-supporting groups without any such health-warning. The effect, needless to say, is to cast political suspicion on the published claims or policy suggestions of the outfits labelled “Rightwing”, even when the material they contain is factual and empirically indisputable.

Yes, but Janet, the CPS is right-wing. It was founded in 1974 by Thatcher, Sir Keith Joseph and Sir Alfred Sherman. You can’t get more right-wing than the CPS. But “factually and empirically indisputable” is something the CPS’s reports are not. Right-wing think tanks don’t think they need to bother with such trivial things as evidence as I pointed out in this blog.

Enter sage and nationalist wit, offaofmercia or “Offal of Mercia” as I prefer to call him (it has to be a him) with this week’s Telegraph Comment of the Week.

Offal of Mercia (cropped)

Let’s have a look at his points.

1. It “hates British history”… which is why there are tons of programmes about various aspects of British history on BBC Television at the moment. David Starkey is currently presenting a programme about the Tudors and Music.  Offal has also missed (some might say deliberately) the She-Wolves documentary presented by Helen Castor on BBC4 and Michael Wood’s series King Alfred and the Anglo-Saxons on the same channel. Massive FAIL.

2. Not sure where Offal gets his ideas that the BBC “hates that Britain was once the greatest power” drivel from. I guess he keeps missing those nationalistic programmes fronted by Dan Snow and others. FAIL.

3. It “hates Christianity and Christians”, which is why the dreary Songs of Praise is still running after 52 years. FAIL.

4. It “protects and promotes Islam”. I can’t see how that’s the case and like the CPS report, Offal’s assertion lacks evidence. FAIL.

5. It “promotes the welfare state which is destroying Britain”. In which case, it must be doing a pretty poor job of it. Offal hasn’t seen Saints and Scroungers or that shitty John Humphrys’  Future of Welfare that was recently slapped down by the BBC Trust. In the latter’s case, the right-wing press went into overdrive with claims of BBC’s ‘left-wing bias’. FAIL.

6. It “promotes the NHS which is killing women left, right and centre”. The BBC has said nothing about the NHS privatization plans and has actually danced to the government’s tune.  The BBC has actually failed to offer a voice that is against the government’s plans. As for “killing women”. How has the NHS done this? Offal offers no examples.  So that’s a FAIL.

7. It “promotes the EU and continental orgs/entities that want to destroy British sovereignty”. The BBC only promotes the BBC and the words of government ministers. FAIL.

8. It “promotes pc culture which has the entire nation walking on eggshells at all times”. What is a “pc culture” and how is it “promoted” by the BBC? Is it because The Black and White Minstrel Show was axed over 30 years ago? That must be it. In which case it is a FAIL.

9. It “despises anything to the right of the Labour party”, which is why it invites government ministers to appear without a dissenting point of view being put to them. Besides, the Labour leadership is right-wing and has been that way for years. Another FAIL.

10. It “promotes depriving a citizen of his/her freedom  because of his/her thoughts and words”. Truly silly stuff from Offal. I can’t see how the BBC does this. It probably says more about Offal’s paranoia than it does the BBC’s allegedly magical ability to control people’s thoughts and actions. I mean, that’s what the remote control is for: if you don’t like what you see or hear, turn it off or change the channel. Tin Foil Hat City. FAIL.

11. It “forces people to give to it through ‘voluntary fees’ though it has NO TOLERANCE for views on the Right”.  First, the license fee isn’t “voluntary” it’s compulsory if you own a television. The Right’s views are given much more airtime on BBC News than any other views. So again, it’s a FAIL.

So Offal of Mercia thinks the BBC controls our minds and never has any right-wingers in their studios.  Yes and I’m King Cnut.

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Filed under allegations of bias, Media, Telegraph Comment of the Week, Tory press

Another Reason to Hate Virgin Media

Usain Bolt should be ashamed of himself.

Not only does Virgin Media make loads of money through a variety of hidden charges (late payment charge, non- Direct Debit charge and so on), they also don’t recognize unions.

I remember reading how Virgin Media had derecognized the Communication Workers Union (CWU) last year.

Since Virgin Media made the outrageous declaration before Christmas, the union and its reps at the company have been out all over the country, despite the snow and ice, distributing leaflets, explaining the situation and encouraging staff to join the union. CWU has also launched a special offer for new members at a discounted rate of £4.99 a month for their first year.

This has resulted in a boost in membership as staff at Virgin Media increasingly realise the benefit of an independent, democratically accountable trade union over a staff forum set up by the company.

Union Home reported that:

Virgin Media bombarded its staff with company propaganda in letters, emails and website messages, at compulsory briefings with company directors and even phonecalls from managers to employees who had not yet voted. How did they know? Was this not an anonymous process? And if managers knew who had voted, did they also know which way they voted? These were some of the concerns being passed to us by employees. The company did allow us a short statement on their intranet (described as ‘very difficult to find’ by one employee). We’re told that managers are receiving a break-down of the voting results to see who got the ‘right’ result for the company. What they will do with the information is anyone’s guess.

This is the modus operandi of a union-busting company. They disseminate anti-union propaganda among the workforce and coerce them into accepting inferior pay and working conditions through a combination of lies, smears, bullying and intimidation.  They even held a referendum… it was rigged.

For years, Richard Branson has cultivated a media image as a cuddly capitalist who looks after his workers.  But capitalists rarely care for their workers and Branson, who throws a strop when people refuse to bend over for him, has been employing union-busters for years.

Here’s Branson pleading with workers to throw away their rights. Note the easy smarm. Note the oily charm.

This article from The Daily Mirror shows just how ruthless and grasping Virgin Media is.

A broadband bill has gone viral online after a man was charged an extra £10 – for being DEAD.

Furious Jim Boyden posted a photograph of his late father-in-law’s Virgin Media bill on Facebook after the company added a fine for late payment.

The image was accompanied by a message to Virgin which apologised for his father-in-law having “the unheard of nerve to be dead and therefore being unable to pay you.”

The picture, posted on Monday, has now been shared by more than 84,000 times.

The bill breakdown shows “D.D Denied-Payer deceased” next to a charge of £63.89, referring to the fact that the dead man’s bank had declined the payment.

As a result, Virgin Media added a “late payment charge” of £10 to the bill.

This blog from Nicholas Shaxson tells us that Virgin Enterprises, the company that sells the Virgin brand to other companies, so they can pose as fully-fledged Virgin companies, moved its operations from London to Geneva.

How important is this kind of abusive tax practice to the Virgin empire? Well, it’s hard to know exactly, but in 2002 Branson was quoted in this way:

“Virgin’s offshore status has been crucial to its development: it allowed money to move from business to business without massive tax liabilities. “If we had not done it the way that we did, Virgin would be half the size that it is today,” argues Branson.”

So overall the rich get richer, the poor get poorer markets get distorted, and there is no net benefit to the world of any kind. Quite the opposite.

People like Branson get awards all the time. No doubt he’s a good businessman in some ways. But this stuff counts as a serious, serious black mark against his name, during these times of national strife.

What is interesting about this is the comments under the Telegraph story – readers are generally a right-wing bunch, but most of the ones, at least at the top, are unremittingly hostile to Branson’s move. Perhaps that comes more from feelings of patriotism than anything else, but still, it’s interesting.

Even if they’ve relocated to Geneva, isn’t it time Virgin’s offices were occupied?

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Filed under Society & culture, Trade Unions, workers rights

Eyes Down For A Full House!

Let’s play extreme right-wing bingo!

Hat tip, Another Angry Voice.

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Filed under Comedy, satire, Society & culture