Sunday 8 March 2020

Bringing people together

If you saw this on Politics Live a few days ago, you might not have seen the comments that appeared below the Tweet featuring it on the BBC News politics Twitter feed.

Sadly, vitriolic commentary is not unusual nowadays, but the comment: 
“Horrible woman.i (sic) don't want to see her on our tv screens.” 
kind of epitomises the noxious nature of some of the discourse on social media.  Firstly, demanding the ‘no-platforming’ of people with whom one disagrees is intolerant enough, but the trend for scatter-gunning vile insults without feeling any need to explain, or offer any reasoning at all is nothing more than reverse virtue-signalling. Call it ‘iniquity-signalling’.

If there was an actual reason behind that Tweet, what could it be? Bile-spouting Tweeters displaying smiling selfies on their timelines seem absurdly oxymoronic to me. I bet a grinning selfie adorns the timeline of whoever wrote “the genocide in Gaza” on some godforsaken thread somewhere.

As Melanie Phillips said, the rise in antisemitism in Europe, the US and the UK is not something to ignore or take lightly.
I thought it was quite remarkable that Rachel Sylvester’s in-depth article about Lisa Nandy in The Times and Nandy’s interview with Laura Kuenssberg on the Beeb glossed over both irreconcilable anomalies in Nandy’s campaign for leadership of the Labour Party concerning two pledges she was, let’s be kind and call it ‘dragooned into’ signing her name to. The first was the issue of trans rights versus women’s right to privacy and single-sex spaces. Two incompatible positions.

The second was about her support for the Palestinians’ “Right of Return” (She’s chair of Labour Friends of Palestine)  - that’s the ‘rights’ of about five million people, refugees and their descendants from the1948 war (of the intended annihilation of Israel) to return to their former ‘homes,’ while at the same time insisting she supports Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. Computer says no.
"When an irresistible force such as you/Meets an old immovable object like me/You can bet just as sure as you live/Something's gotta give/Something’s gotta give/Something's gotta give."
Neither Sylvester nor Kuenssberg showed any interest in what happens when an immovable force meets an intractable problem, and despite Nandy’s (very possibly sincerely meant) promises of ‘bringing people together’ , the fact is, sometimes there’s just no room for mister in-between.


  1. Nandy's been given an incredibly easy ride by the Blairite media. Nandy is no more a moderate than Jess Phillips (wants the Electoral Commission to vet all Parliamentary candidates) or Stella Creasy (wants to open our borders to all comers). Like the Milibands she is the scion of a foreign Marxist who had no love for this country and I don't think we know the half of it.

    So Melanie didn't mention Islam?

    Starmer, far from being a good guy, has been at the forefront of building up anti-Semitism in the UK, through his attitude to migration (which hasn't changed - he wants more of it, with no quality control and his human rights racket only makes that outcome more certain) and his refusal to address the reality of Islam.

  2. The BBC can believe six impossible things before breakfast...and it can believe that it can, with a straight face, maintain that the following are consistent one with another:

    1. Islam is good.

    2. You should not criticise Islam for fear of what its followers will do to you.

    3. Israel has the right to exist.

    4. The Palestinians should have the right to return.

    5. Anti-semitism is bad.

    6. Socialism is good.

    7. Anti-semitism is a problem of the Far Right.

    8. Democracy is good.

    9. Free speech is bad.

    10. All politicians should be PC.

    I would maintain those 10 propositions are all orthodoxy within BBC News and Current Affairs, indeed throughout the BBC, despite the manifest contradictions.

    1. Actually I don't believe that no.8 is the orthodoxy we simple folk thought it was.
      Brexit has opened our eyes to the BBC's disbelief in democracy.
      Evidence is all the disparaging references to "populists", uneducated, old racist voters. Also specifically Matlis questioning whether economics should trump democracy in a Newsnight interview.

    2. I agree that's the underlying reality (and yes, I do recall that gobsmack moment from Maitlis)but in terms of what the BBC narrative is telling us, democracy is still held to be a good. But they want democracy without free speech and with identikit PC politicians. Their happiest time was probably the Cameronian period when it seemed they could remake the Conservative Party in their own image.


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