Tag Archives: hyperbole

Smears, Lies, Hyperbole And Doctored Videos. The Tory Election Campaign Starts As It Means To Go On

Let’s be brutally honest: the Tories have no policies, no ideas and no clue. They believe they have a divine right to rule (rather than govern). For them, the General Election is all about Brexit, or so they’d have you believe. Yesterday on Twitter, the Tories posted a video, which they had edited to make it appear as if Labour’s Shadow Brexit Secretary was stuck for words to a question posed to him by Piers Morgan on Good Morning Britain.

Johnny Mercer who, in spite of his expensive education, isn’t particularly bright, as his use of the word ‘inexplicably’ reliably informs us. There’s an explanation for this video, but it’s not one that he’d readily admit to. At the time of writing, the video clip is still up on Twitter and is being retweeted. On today’s edition of Good Morning Britain, Conservative Party chairman, James ‘Clown Shoes’ Cleverly, was asked about it. His reply is predictable.

‘We needed to shorten the video’ he says but he doesn’t offer a credible reason why he had to edit it. The real reason, and it’s not one that Cleverly would willingly admit to, is that he wanted to make Kier Starmer look stupid. He even tried to pass it off as ‘satire’, which is what Tories and alt-rightists do every time they’re caught out. Tories actually hate satire, because it punches up rather than down. The BBC’s cancellation of That Was The Week That Was in 1963 after pressure brought about by the Home government stands as a testament.

Today’s Daily Telegraph’s screaming front page reproduces part of Boris Johnson’s hyperbolic article contained within it pages, in which he compares Jeremy Corbyn to Joseph Stalin.

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Johnson’s article ignores such things as history and facts to push a pretty bad piece of hyperbole. If Corbyn was anything like Stalin, we’d all be dead now, Johnson included. What Johnson appears to be defending is greed and no doubt the article, which is hidden behind a paywall, repeats the dishonest phrase ‘wealth creators’ several times but to compare Britain’s greediest to the kulaks is beyond hyperbole: it’s risible melodrama worthy of Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard and, in typical Johnson fashion, it also plays fast and loose with the truth.

Yesterday on right-wing talk station, LBC, Jacob Rees Mogg told listeners that those who perished in the Grenfell Tower fire “lacked common sense” to leave the burning building. He was supported by Andrew Bridgen, who in an interview with Poll Tax architect, Evan Davis, on Radio 4’s PM, told listeners:

“But we want very clever people running the country, don’t we Evan?” “That’s a byproduct of what Jacob is and that’s why he is in a position of authority.” This is just another way of saying “bourgeois social conditioning produces children with superior intellects”. In this unguarded moment, Bridgen’s mask slipped to reveal the eugenicist underneath. This morning he tried to be contrite, but Twitter wasn’t having any of it.

Paul on Books had this to say:

James Felton told him:

Not wishing to be outdone by any of her colleagues, the terminally stupid, Nadine Dorries, went for the old “Corbyn is a threat to our national security” angle, while retweeting an article which purported to carry the words of former Foreign Secretary and warmonger, Jack Straw (also hidden behind a paywall). For Dorries, this was definitive proof that Corbyn was dangerous, despite having a security clearance and being a Privy Councillor. Of course, when it comes to lies, the Tories have a fatal attraction.

Jack Straw? Much respected? Not by this author and not by those who opposed the wasteful and catastrophic war in Iraq.

It’s officially the first day of the General Election campaign and already the Tories are making a mess of it – just like they did last time.

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Britain’s Right And Their Opposition To Protest

The British Right (the Tories and Kippers) will tell anyone who will listen that they’re democrats. One form of democracy which they don’t approve of is the protest. Since the general election, there have been a number of anti-austerity protests up and down the country. The Tories seem to believe that because they won 24.3% of the vote, that should be the end of the matter. People should just put up with austerity. The Tories have never been known to brook opposition. If anything, they despise it. That’s why Thatcher abolished the Greater London Council and the metropolitan county councils.

Yesterday’s anti-austerity protest on the day of the State Opening of Parliament is a case in point. UKIP’s sole MP, Douglas Carswell was caught up in the protests and like all good right-wingers, he lapsed into melodrama. He told The Guardian,

“It got extremely, extremely nasty. Their intentions were pretty murderous and I needed a lot of police officers to prevent them from attacking me,”

He had a bottle of water thrown over him. Wow. It’s not as though someone threw a bottle of warm piss over him. This has the feel of “Mummy, those beastly protesters gave me dirty looks! Make them stop!”. Carswell continues,

“I was stunned. I think MPs should be able to go about their business. It was incredibly intimidating. It was like a lynch mob on the streets of London. I thought this was a country where we had democracy and discussed the issues. “It just got incredibly ugly. It was an attempted lynching. I am in a state of shock. I do not want to have to worry about going about my business.”

The phrase “lynch mob” (which was also picked up by the Daily Mail) is typically hyperbolic, but that’s what Tories, Kippers and their supporters are like. I mean, why use reasoned arguments, when you can use melodrama and mendacity instead? Carswell told The [Notionally] Independent,

“If this is the way the extreme left behave now, I do not think it bodes well for the future.”

Carswell’s characterization of the protesters as “extreme left” chimes with the recent paranoid warnings of government ministers, because in the eyes of Tories and Kippers, anyone who protests against cuts is on the “extreme left”. If you look at the comments thread below The Guardian article, you will see a large number of right-wing keyboard warriors all spouting the same nonsense. “Why aren’t they working” and “soap-dodgers” being the most clichéd refrains, thus showing us the Right’s glaring lack of originality when it comes to hurling insults at their enemies.

The political right never protests because it doesn’t have to, and even when it’s not in power, it’s still pulling the strings from behind the scenes. Even during the Nu Labour years, Britain’s political right stayed indoors and let their lackeys in the ‘free press’ get on with the job of printing lies. Not one of them protested (unless you count The Countryside Alliance protest in 2002 in which a few hundred thousand braying toffs and their hangers-on demonstrated against the Hunting Act). This tells us something about Britain’s political right and those who support them: they are deferential, spineless whingers and they’ll touch their forelocks to anyone in authority. Their idea of resistance is to make the occasional joke about students and those horrible “loony lefties”. It’s so terribly English. Yah?

Finally, The Cat would like to remind readers that Carswell is a fan of Ayn Rand, who once characterized the poor and dispossessed as “moochers”. Protesters were also regarded in a similarly disparaging light. That’s the kind of world Dougie inhabits and it’s a frightening one.

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Filed under Conservative Party, Government & politics, Media, Yellow journalism

The Weasel Words and Faulty Logic of Michael Heaver

UKIP’s bright young thing or just another tool?

I was looking at Telegraph blogs this morning when I spotted this blog by Michael Heaver.

Heaver describes himself as:

… a political commentator who campaigns for Ukip.

His Facebook page tells us:

Michael Heaver is standing to be UKIP MEP in Eastern England. He blogs for The Telegraph and was Young Independence’s first elected Chairman.

Heaver’s blog has the deliberately provocative title “Britain is massively in debt with major youth unemployment. What do we do? Throw open our borders”. This is enough to get the racists, fascists and closet weirdos out in force.

Scientific racist, Roger Hicks, can’t resist an opportunity to plug his book and repeat his usual spiel about the need to preserve the purity of the British ‘race’ (sic).

rogerhicks 
We are seeking to provide for too many, both our own and those from abroad.The underlying problem is that we don’t really distinguish between the two. To me, native Britons are my OWN. For the government it is ANYONE they choose to give British citizenship to.

When the numbers were small, handing out British citizenship to a few people of different race and culture to our own wasn’t an issue, like adding a few drops of colour to a very large pot of white paint: you are still left with a pot of white paint.

But this is not what has happened. Colour has been added by the cupful, providing a temporary “rainbow” (or “kaleidoscope”! as John Bercow would call it) of colour, but so much that if we stir it in (which we are constantly being encouraged to do), we will no longer have a pot of white paint, i.e. will destroy the ethnic identity of Britain’s ancient native (white) population . . .

It is high time we faced up to this reality, instead of dismissing any reference to it as “racist”, or ridiculing the importance of skin colour as an indicator of ethnic identity (fine for black people to acknowledge as such, but a mortal sin for white people to do the same . . Why? Because of state racial ideology).

State ideology (and IDEOLOGY, with its spurious claim to moral authority, which anyone in public life needs to be associated with, is what this is really all about) insists that “race doesn’t matter”, or even exist, is just a “social construct”, of importance only to evil “racists” like myself.

Only race and ethnic origins clearly DO matter. Not in the way that genuine racists believe they do, but because central to any deep and meaningful sense of both personal, and group, i.e. national, identity. Which is why the state, which legitimises itself and its political elite by deceitfully posing as our nation, need to demonise and suppress this truth as “racist”.

My bold. This guy is clearly a fascist fruitloop. Paranoid, delusional, hysterical and prone to hyperbolic flights of fancy, he always attempts to link skin colour to culture. Notice also how he attacks the idea of ‘race’ as a social construct. This is one who believes that ‘race’ is ‘biologically determined’ but if that’s the case, so are congenital diseases like Huntington’s  Disease. And eye and hair colour? They’re biologically determined too. Yet he wouldn’t demand that we keep the purity of our ‘natural’ British hair colour (whatever that is). Say NO to dying/colouring your hair!

If time travel were possible, I’d like to send Hicks back to Roman Britain just to see how he reacts. Better still, perhaps he should be made to take a DNA test to determine what his ‘racial’ origins are. We’d probably find that his ancestors are a mix of Arabs, Jews and Africans.

Anyway, back to Heaver. Here’s his opening gambit:

Vast swathes of the British political establishment now seem to have their heads buried so deep in the sand I’m surprised they know whether it’s day or night. We stand as a country buried in hundreds of billions of pounds of debt, with a government still spending vast amounts more than it raises, and yet the inevitable pressures are set to continue. Pressures which will be of our own government’s making.

For someone who wants to stand as a UKIP candidate for the European Parliament, Heaver is remarkably clueless about state finances. All governments borrow money and even if the present government says it’s “reducing the debt”, they’re lying and lying badly. Of course, the majority of people are clueless when it comes to state finances and will believe anything that someone with a posh accent tells them to believe. “We’re reducing the national debt”, they’ll say.  Yeah? Prove it, then. “Er, I meant the deficit”. Oh? Show me, then. “Look over there! Migrants are coming to take our jobs”! Yes, that really is the best they can do.

Here Heaver repeats his party’s scare story about the UK being ‘flooded’ with immigrants from Romania and Bulgaria in January. He tries to sidestep this in the opening sentence of the following paragraph:

Talking about mass migration is a silly game of scaremongering, say many of those in Westminster. Yet today we find out that once again, they are wrong. No fewer than 200,000 Roma are already in Britain and that’s before the doors open to Romania and Bulgaria next year.

Realising someone may come along an accuse him and his dreadful party of anti-Roma prejudice, he offers this insincere disclaimer:

I don’t want to demonise the Roma. These are often vulnerable people – who inevitably require resources that we simply haven’t got. Healthcare, schooling, social services – there was even talk on a Channel 4 News report last night of advice on jobseeker’s allowance.

“I don’t want to demonise the Roma”, he tells us but he’s going to anyway.

His next paragraph opens with an appeal to ‘common sense’ in which he cites the ubiquitous but somewhat anonymous ‘man-on-the-street’:

The man on the street can see it how it is: we are a country with one million young people unemployed. Half of our young black males are out of work. Our resources are not stretching far enough for those already here. Committing ourselves to providing for many of those who chose to come is madness. The numbers don’t stack up and nor does the moral argument.

He ends the paragraph with an appeal to moral authority. These people love their logical fallacies.

Instead of proposing sensible solutions, like a reduction in the working week or providing real jobs and training, Heaver – like any Kipper – resorts to the easy solution of scapegoating. Just join the dots and feel the hate.

As I write this, I’ve noticed that Hicks has posted another massive comment that repeats what he said in the first comment. He’s desperate to sell his book. Don’t buy it! Heaver is just as desperate, but in his case he wants get elected, take EU money and spend all his time doing nothing like the rest of his party’s MEPs.

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Filed under Anti-Ziganism, Ideologies, National Identity, Political parties, Society & culture, UKIP

Alec Shelbrooke: hypocrisy, lies and smears

Shelbrooke: he gorges himself stupid at the taxpayer’s expense.

I completely missed the story of Alec Shelbrooke’s withdrawal of his hated benefits cash card bill last month. Shelbrooke, whose waistline grows bigger each day he sits in the Commons, is no friend of benefit claimants or trade unionists.

The idea behind the cash card was to limit the kind of items that benefit claimants could spend their welfare payments on. This is from the BBC website:

Mr Shelbrooke told me he has widespread support from ordinary people and has been unfairly portrayed as a right-wing Tory who believes idle scroungers should be stopped from living a life of unearned luxury.

His view is that benefit claimants will be far better off if they are unable to buy what he calls “NEDD items”- things that were, in his words, “non-essential, desirable but often damaging”.

Perhaps he should take his own advice and spend less time gorging himself with the subsidized food and drink that is paid for with our taxes? Just a thought.

He also feels that there has been a lot of deliberate misinterpretation of his proposals particularly by benefits campaign groups and Labour politicians.

“I made it clear this would apply to all claimants in work and out of work, and would cover all benefits other than disability payments and the basic state pension,” he told me.

“Yet time and again I have seen criticism based on how this will degrade the lifestyles of groups that I specifically exclude from my proposal.”

No, there has been no “deliberate misinterpretation” and it’s fanciful and delusional to think that opposition to the tax is based on wilful misinterpretation. This bill was predicated on Shelbrooke’s and his fellow Tories’ class disgust. He also claims that “most of the public” supports his idea.  Of course, he would deny that consent for cuts and the Bedroom Tax was manufactured by the Tory press, the BBC and ITV in the first place.

I took a look at his blog. Here he says:

Primarily there are two critical points to the bill.  The first is that all benefits paid by the government, whether people are working or not, should be on a debit card (that would also allow cheaper energy deals to be used) would remove any stigma.  The second is to stop people buying cigarettes, alcohol, gambling and satellite TV with the card.  Indeed, I describe the essentials it should be used on as food, energy, transport, clothing and housing. In all of the abuse I have received from people opposed to the idea I still haven’t had one person tell me how smoking, drinking and gambling help to raise someone out of poverty.

My bold. The trouble is, his government is not committed to raising anyone out of poverty. Their rationale is to force people into working for nothing and castigating the working poor for claiming benefits.

Further down his blog, I found this.

Raising the debate itself led to death threats to my office and a torrent of foul language and  statements being levelled at me from the Left.  How do I know they are from the Left?  Primarily because they did it on twitter and their profile name gave them away as to their political leanings.  But is it acceptable in our so called mature society to call me a fascist, a hater of the poor and most offensively of all eluding to Nazism though making the suggestion that I should get “all benefits claimants to wear yellow stars”?  I can take as many insults as you throw at me, but how dare people use the murder of six million people as their insult simply because they’re incapable of constructing a plausible argument, which can stand up to debate on their so-called ‘holy grail of the country’. Quite frankly, it’s base, contemptible and disgraceful.

There’s something inside me that says Shelbrooke is being over-dramatic. “Death threats”? Really? Funny how the press has never once mentioned it.  He also complains that he has been attacked on Twitter by “the Left” but why would anyone on the Left support his proposals? They wouldn’t. But suggesting that the Left should say nothing and support his crazy plan is nothing short of delusional.  Indeed, in making his dubious moral points, Shelbrooke displays the lack of critical thinking that is endemic in today’s Britain.

Here, he defends the wrongheaded and hated Bedroom Tax.

I cannot tell you how many private home owners have asked me why they should pay tax on their empty rooms.  Of course they will not.  The use of the word tax is misleading for a start, as tax is money taking by the government from what you earn, not reduce the amount of money they give you in the fist place.  I have heard countless examples in the House of Labour MPs describing parents of service personnel in social housing, keeping a room free for them when they are at home, and loosing £14 a week.  Our service men and women do a fantastic job and no one disputes that, but they do a job for which they are paid and I don’t consider it unreasonable to suggest they use £14 of their salary to pay for a room in the home of their parents, who are on State benefits. Remember these are benefits paid by the government because it is deemed people cannot afford the cost on their own.

He really isn’t as smart as he likes to think. This is a tax and no matter what Shelbrooke or his fellow Tories say to allay our fears, nothing will change that. The intention behind this tax has always been transparent: it’s an attack on those people who live in social housing and the class disgust that underpins the now dead bill is palpable.

This scaremongering, playing to the most vulnerable in society, lowers the level of debate so low that disgusting language and insults are now deemed to be acceptable by the Left.

Here, he pretty much hoists himself by his own petard. He inadvertently acknowledges that those who are a most likely to be affected by the Bedroom Tax are the vulnerable. It is right that those on the Left articulate the concerns of those who will be affected by the tax.  As for “scaremongering” that’s what his party does so well.

The last sentence of his blog is unintentionally hilarious.

The left should be ashamed of the way they have dragged down the democracy of our country, although that assumes they ever really valued it in the first place.

He loves assuming the moral high ground. I saw him do it in the Benefits Uprating Bill.  But this sentence also assumes that we live in a democracy. The Tories didn’t win the 2010 General Election and they have no real mandate. In other words, their welfare ‘reforms’ are undemocratic. Shelbrooke can’t see that because, like his fellow Conservatives, he lacks the capacity for self-reflexivity and believes he, like them, is born to rule.

Essentially the cash card scheme was another plan to carve up slices of public services and sell them off to the highest bidder. Mastercard and Allpay were lining up for a piece of the action in case Shelbrooke’s bill became law. Indeed, the report into these cards was financed by Mastercard. The Cat asks if the report was financed by Mastercard, then what else have they financed?

For all their whining about the “nanny state”, Tory MPs like Shelbrooke are more than happy to force the “nanny state”  on to the most vulnerable and those whom they hold in disgust.

The Cat thinks Shelbrooke needs to take a long hard look at himself in the mirror… if he can find one big enough, that is.

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