I mentioned the BBC having fitted up UKIP in their ‘Meet the Ukippers’ film in the last post and curiously the subject has come up again…the BBC being quite proud of that little film.
The Guardian tells us that ‘BBC2 controller Kim Shillinglaw calls for shows that ‘grab you by the balls’ for an audience she described as the “punk” generation. The channel, which has become synonymous with cookery and craft shows, has just seen the average age of its audience rise above 60 for the first time. Shillinglaw called for more presenters with edge and attitude, and appeared to call time on “straight cooking” shows despite the imminent return to the channel of Nigella Lawson.’
I don’t know about you but that is probably quite scary….what the BBC believes is grabbing you by the balls is undoubtedly being openly biased and over-dramatic about subjects such as immigration, Islam and climate change…the BBC going all out to grab hold of your misperceptions about these subjects, give you a good shaking and rigorously emphasise and press home the ‘real’ facts that you never knew you didn’t know but the BBC will gladly re-educate you about.
“We made a flawed but very interesting documentary called Meet the Ukippers which had some moments in it which just made your jaw drop.”
I’d be fascinated to know exactly which bits of the programme she thinks were ‘flawed’. Could one of them be the way the BBC set out to tar a completely innocent woman as a racist? Probably not as that is presumably the bit which made Shillingshaw’s ‘jaw drop’. Clearly she didn’t actually listen to what the woman, UKIP councillor Rozanne Duncan, said on the film and understood its actual meaning….we’ve looked at that film in a previous post….A Peculiar Kind Of Racism.….Duncan is in no way a racist…..and yet the BBC deliberately trailed the film, finally released in February, suspiciously close to the election, when it was already in the can in December, and ‘leaked’ that Duncan was making ‘racist’ comments.
The BBC crucified Duncan and hung her out to dry for their own political motives. In effect this was BBC ‘racism’…you’re in UKIP you must be bad and therefore we can abuse you at will, say anything we like about you however false, however slanderous, no matter if it destroys your life.
Hilariously Shillinglaw said ‘she wanted BBC2’s factual shows to be “a little bit more contemporary. Life isn’t just about bunting; we could do more to get closer to the national conversation”.’
Get closer to the ‘national conversation’? You’ve got to be kidding…Evan Davis just spent half an hour lambasting Nigel Farage for his ‘unacceptable’ tone, ie, that he opposes mass immigration, wants to get out of Europe and spoke openly about the difficulties caused by immigrants who refuse to integrate and instead form their own ghetto societies…..all things Evan and the BBC find taboo subjects and yet are all ones that the ‘national conversation’ has views on that are contrary to the BBC’s and wants represented in a more balanced, reasoned and less vitriolic way…not to mention truthful.
If the BBC wants to reflect the national conversation then it will have to change its tone and start telling the truth about immigration, Europe, climate change and the consequences of the Islamisation of parts of the UK and of the political sphere as politicians sell out the country to buy minority votes.
At the moment the ‘Punk Generation’, and everyone else, is being ‘Punk’d’…fooled, humiliated and lied to by the BBC… so I look forward to a new era of openness, reconciliation and a new vision for the future that means we can talk about immigration without being called racist, talk about Islam without being vilified as Islamophobic and criticise climate ‘science’ without being deliberately associated with Nazi ‘Holocaust Deniers’ by BBC presenters.
A Muslim Conservative council candidate has said she would never stoop so low as to vote for Ed Miliband…Al Yahud…The Jew.
I didn’t hear a thing on the news about this from the BBC….the first time I heard anything was a brief mention by Adrian Chiles and that was it.
The BBC has reported it....but has tucked it away on the ‘England’ page, so go to the Frontpage, then the UK page and then the England page to find it…you get the impression they don’t want you to see the story really….can you imagine the BBC’s reaction if this had been a white, non-Muslim Tory or, Allah forfend, a UKIP candidate? Well of course no need to imagine, the BBC set out to stitch up a UKIP councillor for saying she was scared of ‘negroes’….mark, not that she hated them, just scared of them.
The BBC fails to mention what may well be a crucial factor in Gulzabeen Afsar’s reaction to ‘Al Yahud’…she is Muslim.
The BBC of course always tries to avoid mentioning ‘Muslim’ in any of its reports….people arrested for possible terrorism and the BBC will mention their age, their gender, where they come from and the crimes allegedly committed but nowhere do they mention the crucial bit of information that might inform the audience of a possible motivating factor in the crime…such as having Islamic beliefs….ie being ‘Muslim’…surely the one single, most important fact that the audience needs to help them understand what is going on and why so many ‘British Youths’ are being radicalised……after all it is all Muslim youths that this is happening to.
So why is the BBC not making a big song and dance about her comments? Why are they not investigating the ‘issue’ of Muslim anti-semitism? Why are the BBC not speaking about a ‘warning from history’? Why does the BBC hide the truth?
Why such a low key reaction when only a few days ago we had this exclusive from the Muslim News…
A future Labour Government is committed to outlaw the scourge of Islamophobia by changing the law and making it an aggravated crime, according to the Party’s Leader Ed Miliband.
“We are going to make it an aggravated crime. We are going to make sure it is marked on people’s records with the police to make sure they root out Islamophobia as a hate crime,” Miliband told the Editor of The Muslim News, Ahmed J Versiin a wide ranging exclusive interview.
“We are going to change the law on this so we make it absolutely clear of our abhorrence of hate crime and Islamophobia. It will be the first time that the police will record Islamophobic attacks right across the country,” he said.
When a Muslim says she wouldn’t vote for ‘the Jew’ does that not raise quite a few questions, not least what is Miliband’s reaction to her statement considering his recent pandering to the Muslim community?
The BBC falling down on the job….but what’s new when it comes to hiding anything that brings Islam into disrepute.
BBC Trending tells us that ‘An easy way to find key tweets about the party leaders taking part in the UK general election is to type in their surnames. Searches for “Miliband”, “Clegg”, “Farage”, “Sturgeon” and others are sufficient to bring up their Twitter accounts or hashtags being promoted by party supporters.’
They should try it themselves because if you type in ‘Sturgeon’ you will find #dollgate is trending well. The BBC, and most shockingly BBC Trending, are resolutely ignoring this latest political scandal despite being the ones to have broken it originally in 2014.
For the record, I think my sister is misremembering. I’m sure it was a Sindy doll. #DollGate
Why are the BBC ignoring this important political story that illustrates the utter ruthlessness of the woman who will be running the country if Ed Miliband gets into No10?…Big, pressing questions come to mind…such as how will she dispose of Ed’s other puppet master, Len McCluskey?…should be an interesting fight! My money’s on the wee lassie.
Cameron had a bit of ‘brain fade’ and the BBC have relentlessly hounded him ever since….just this morning they trawled over this old story once again, even bringing in a psychiatrist….the presenter was a bit miffed as the psychiatrist ‘defended’ Cameron…apparently he was just doing what we all do occasionally….so not a sign of a man unfit for the highest office in the land with major responsibilities as I’m sure the presenter was hoping the conclusion would be.
In all seriousness it is unusual for the BBC, especially BBC Trending, to ignore something like this, especially as it gives them a chance to bash The Sun for its ‘tabloidesque’ reporting of the subject and ‘bullying’ of a female politician.
Anyway…..what will the future bring us? At least Ed can look forward to free haircuts when in office…. #owned….
The Spectator reports that one of Miliband’s closest aides justified the shameless use of dead migrants to attack Cameron in this way…
‘We got into the papers, didn’t we?’
Not just the papers of course….Miliband had the headline on the BBC frontpage for the whole day and dominated the news bulletins all day as well…why did the BBC allow itself to be used when it knew this was a cynical political stunt by Miliband in the most shameless and cowardly way possible…..briefing that Cameron was directly to blame for deaths of migrants and then the next day not actually daring to make that blatant claim, instead making an indirect link to the tragedies and then touring the newsrooms claiming this was the Tories ‘manufacturing a row’…or as Miliband put it ‘whipping up a storm’ when clearly this was a Labour plot to smear Cameron, to cast the Tories as ‘political plotters’ and to grab the headlines?
‘We got it [the dead migrants] in the papers’! Remind me why immigrants vote Labour when they are just ‘cannon fodder’ for Miliband’s political ambition to be PM and Labour’s wider ideological intrigues?
Miliband wants to forget Iraq and has ‘put it behind him’…I guess he wants to do the same with the crisis in Libya which he helped create.
Miliband is certainly getting his blood money’s worth out of migrants dying in the Med. The BBC has given him headlines all day and has hardly mentioned the large amount of criticism directed at him from so many quarters.
The BBC’s Chris Mason tried to blame the Tories for making this into an ‘incendiary story’ and deflecting the news agenda away from Labour’s ‘subtle, nuanced point’ about Libya and the failure to plan for the future….or as Mason put it…Labour’s subtle argument was ‘obliterated by the Tory attack’. That claim was made after he admitted Labour had sent him their press release the night before stating quite clearly that Cameron was directly to blame for deaths of migrants…how can Mason then blame the Tories for ‘turning this into an incendiary issue’? Labour deliberately set out to get the headlines with a highly inflammatory statement and the BBC has obliged all day.
We then had on ex-diplomat Sir Jeremy Greenstock…and you
have to ask how on earth does the UK get anything done in its own interest with the likes of Greenstock representing them?…a man more inclined to be an internationalist than a man who would press for the UK’s interests first. I always despair/laugh when I listen to diplomats….they seem to think their job is to get agreement regardless of the actual contents of the agreement.
Greenstock waffled on and essentially attacked Cameron. Tony Livesey seemed all too keen as he declared ‘So Ed Miliband was right!’
about the SNP…and no mention of the question about ‘trust’ and his having betrayed his brother…the questioner saying he and his friends probably wouldn’t vote Labour because of this trust issue…you might think that was a notable comment, especially considering the huge fuss about this recently….the BBC didn’t…they stuck with Libya…..
Ed Miliband has been questioned by 10 young voters in the Live Lounge.
Curiously no mention of Miliband’s betrayal of the Syrian people either.…how many have died after he abandoned them to their fate…and how many are those refugees drowning in the Med because of his failure to support them? Hope he asks that question of himself in the mirror each morning just as he denounces Cameron. The BBC certainly won’t be asking him such awkward questions.
Whilst the BBC give us their Live lounge interview one they don’t report is an encounter Miliband has had on LBC about the NHS…
A woman whose mother died in a hospital under Labour has told Ed Miliband that she find it ‘physically repulsive’ when he claims to lead the party of the NHS.
During a live radio phone-in, the woman challenged the Labour leader over the ‘totally avoidable’ and ‘horrific’ death.
The woman, who was identified as Claire from Manchester, said that there was a ‘total denial’ from the party about what went wrong in her mother’s case.
She said that her local Labour candidate had put the phone down on her when she rang him to speak about the treatment her mother received.
The exchange is one of the first unscripted moments of the election campaign, which has been tightly-controlled and stage-managed with the party leaders meeting very few regular voters.
As the Mail says this is one of the few unscripted moments of the campaign where ‘real’ members of the Public have got through to the politicians unchecked….the BBC itself was raising this issue about stage-management of ‘public appearances’…and yet they ignore this blistering attack on Miliband.
So two stories about Miliband being ‘mobbed’ and not one about severe criticism of Labour on the NHS…which of course is one of its central themes of its election campaign…..because we all know that ‘labour created the NHS’…except it didn’t…all it did was put into practise a plan devised by William Beveridge, a Liberal, under the authority of Tory PM Winston Churchill.
It looks very much like the BBC is acting like Miliband’s PR agency than a news outlet, only reporting the nice stuff and hiding the bad.
My friend Jon Gaunt was on Newsnight last night discussing immigration and he has made a very revealing and interesting podcast on the experience here. Having done so many BBC “Interviews” myself over the years, I totally relate to the points Jon makes. It’s the contrivance, the clear imbalance and the horror when you say something that resonates with normal people but not their elitist view. Jon frequently talks about the institutional bias of the BBC and I would commend that you subscribe to his podcast.
‘We could not stand by as Colonel Gaddafi murdered his own people..…That’s why I said to the Prime Minister that it was right to take part in this international action…backed by the UN mandate…not a mandate for regime change…and that is the basis on which we are acting’ Ed Miliband 2011
Just to back up David on Miliband’s comments on Libya blaming Cameron for deaths of migrants.
Miliband fully backed the UN mandated mission to bomb Libya which was intended to protect the civilians from Gaddafi’s attack…he talked of rebuilding Libya but only of a Libya that was peaceful…not as we find it now in a civil war where reconstruction is all but impossible…does he now back boots on the ground as the only real solution? If not what does he suggest? As he said “The [UN] resolution is about our responsibility to protect the Libyan people—no more, no less…. we cannot afford mission creep” I doubt very much that he backed further military action…in other words if Cameron had wanted to take further military action (and is that just the UK?…impossible) to stabilise Libya post Gaddafi Miliband wouldn’t have backed him….so his position now is hypocritical to say the least.
Guido has checked and Miliband has only mentioned Libya once in a press release since 2013….. ‘It is inconceivable that Miliband’s Blair-booing Labour Party would have voted to put the troops on the ground needed to bolster any post-conflict settlement and restore order. Vague empty words about planning are worthless and Miliband’s blocking of a decisive Western intervention (“standing up to Obama”) in Syria only added to the refugee crisis in the region. Labour’s lack of support for boots on the ground – as advocated by Tony Blair – added to the regional chaos.’
Curious here how there is little outrage from the Left about Miliband’s comments…surely on a scale much more offensive than Fallon’s comment that Miliband had stabbed his brother in the back…..despite everybody knowing and admitting he had.
Listening to the Today programme and the BBC’s Norman Smith gave us the benefit of his thoughts on the matter….rather than a critique of Miliband it turned out to be an attack on the Tories claiming they are opportunistically using this to attack Miliband!…I paraphrase…
This is not about policy but about character…Miliband’s….the Tories are saying this shows Miliband not fit to be Prime Minister.
Miliband’s comments were seized on by the Conservatives…a classic election row…maybe Labour should have worded the accusation more carefully to avoid the charge that Cameron bears some direct responsibility.
‘In Libya, Labour supported military action to avoid the slaughter Gaddafi threatened in Benghazi. But since the action, the failure of post conflict planning has become obvious. David Cameron was wrong to assume that Libya’s political culture and institutions could be left to evolve and transform on their own.
What we have seen in Libya is that when tensions over power and resource began to emerge, they simply reinforced deep seated ideological and ethnic fault lines in the country, meaning the hopes of the revolutionary uprisings quickly began to unravel. The tragedy is that this could have been anticipated.
It should have been avoided. And Britain could have played its part in ensuring the international community stood by the people of Libya in practice rather than standing behind the unfounded hopes of potential progress only in principle.’
At least Nick Robinson recognises it for what it is…a Labour smear…a manufactured row..
Ed Miliband is to accuse David Cameron and other world leaders of failing to “stand by” Libya, contributing in part to the crisis in the Mediterranean.
The Labour leader, who backed UK military action in Libya in 2011, will criticise “failures in post-conflict planning” and say the current refugee situation should have been anticipated.
Note that comment about Miliband backing military action in 2011 in Libya……so what did he then do to ensure Libya didn’t become a failed state? What were his ideas and input on ‘post conflict planning’? Remind me BBC. Why not ask him?
‘We could not stand by as Colonel Gaddafi murdered his own people..…That’s why I said to the PM that it was right to take part in this international action…backed by the UN mandate…not a mandate for regime change…and that is the basis on which we are acting’
“If we had not acted, we would have been spending recent months not talking about the progress of our action in Libya but wringing our hands over the slaughter in Benghazi, as we did after Bosnia,” he said.
This is what Cameron said at the time..
David Cameron told Parliament that the UK’s “full diplomatic presence” was moving back to the capital, but he also sounded a note of caution.
The prime minister said it was vital that Libya was re-constructed by its own people, rather than foreign governments and agencies taking charge.
Libya is “fully capable of paying for its own reconstruction”, Mr Cameron told the House of Commons.
“Of course there is a role for foreign advice, help and support. But we don’t want to see an army of foreign consultants driving around in 4x4s giving the impression this is something done to the Libyans, rather than done by them.”
Following the unfreezing of Libyan assets, he also confirmed that RAF aircraft had flown in “hundreds of millions of dinars of Libyan banknotes” to the country.
Last week, a summit in Paris agreed to release £9bn ($15bn) in withheld assets to help the country’s economy to function properly.
Edward Miliband: The right hon. and learned Gentleman has huge expertise in this area and he makes an important point. This is a very important moment for multilateralism because a UN resolution has been passed without opposition at the Security Council. This is a real test of the international community and its ability to carry through not just our intentions but the intentions and values of the United Nations. He is completely right about that.
I was talking about proportionality, which is the third test of the responsibility to protect. It is right to say that our targeting strategy and that of our allies—this is something that the Prime Minister and I have discussed.
It is hard to define success at this point, except to say that we have a clear UN resolution before us on the protection of the Libyan people, and that we must seek to implement that resolution. That is the best criterion for success that we have, for now. No doubt the Government will want to build on that as the campaign unfolds.
That takes me on to the third part of my speech, which is about not just defining the mission but ensuring that there is clarity as it moves forward. There are a number of questions and challenges that the Government must seek to answer in the days ahead. In particular, there are four areas that require clarity: clarity about the forces and command structure involved; clarity about the mandate; clarity about our role in it and the limits; and most difficult of all, clarity about the endgame.
We must be clear about the mandate of the UN resolution. We all want to see Colonel Gaddafi gone, and the Prime Minister repeated that today. None of us, however, should be under any illusions or in any doubt about the terms of what was agreed. The resolution is about our responsibility to protect the Libyan people—no more, no less.
The House should be clear about the degree of difficulty of what we are attempting in securing a coalition from beyond western powers to support intervention in another, north African, state, so we cannot afford mission creep, and that includes in our public pronouncements.
As the Prime Minister said, in principle it must be for the Libyan people to determine the shape of their future.
The resolution is clear that this is not about an army of occupation. The Prime Minister said on Friday that it was not about boots on the ground.
The argument that we do not know the precise sequence of events that will unfold is not a good argument for inaction.
It is essential that both we and multilateral institutions prepare for the peace, whatever form that might take. Indeed, alongside the responsibility to protect is the responsibility to rebuild. I am sure that is something that the Government will be urgently undertaking. It is imperative that they do.
So what since that speech in 2011 did Miliband do to ensure that the government helped to rebuild Libya after having backed so assiduously the bombing campaign and having said…’As the Prime Minister said, in principle it must be for the Libyan people to determine the shape of their future.’
Miliband of course had no idea that Libya would turn in on itself and make reconstruction almost impossible, and so why does he now insist Cameron should have been blessed with this particular insight?…so when he talks of rebuilding Libya it has to be seen in the context that he meant a ‘peaceful’ Libya….has he since made any statements about how to deal with the violence in Libya or how to rebuild Libya whilst it is going in? Does he support boots on the ground which is the only real solution?
Let’s hear it…let’s hear the BBC ask the question.
The reason so many hurl themselves recklessly at our rocky southern shores is because we are a haven of civilisation, where peace and law prevail, human rights are mostly observed, mercy is valued and murder punished.
Europe may lose that reputation if it becomes primarily a fortress, ignoring the age-old humanitarian lore of the sea that long predates human rights laws.
She seems to have no idea that those immigrants, coming in such vast numbers, and she of course doesn’t say when the tap should be turned off, will destroy what they value…..not just that ‘reputation’ but Europe’s very values and its ability to bring those values into being that created that reputation.
On Today (08:17) they are talking about one billion people in Africa now, and the likely prospect of rapid growth to 2 billion….and so many of them wanting to come here….things will get worse.
Such numbers will destroy Europe in its present democratic, liberal state that provides security, stability and welfare…none of which will be possible as vast numbers of people force their way into Europe and fail to integrate and achieve their dreams.
If Europe is that helicopter it can only rescue so many people, too many people loaded on board will bring the helicopter down.
The Today programme in BBC Radio 4 excels itself each morning, launching attack after attack on the Conservatives. In essence it is reduced to an echo chamber for Labour talking points. I listened earlier to the BBC talk up Miliband’s ludicrous assertion that David Cameron is “partly” to blame for the masses exiting from Libya to European shores. The sneering logic is that because Cameron played a role in removing Ghadaffi then he is responsible for people smuggling in North Africa. On that basis, given that Labour presided over the invasions that led to chaos in Afghanistan and Iraq, can we reasonable assert that they are “partly” responsible for the deaths of millions? Can’t wait for the BBC to bring up this point…
The other point is that not all illegal immigrants (or “migrants” as the BBC chooses to call them) departing Libyan shores HAIL from Libya. In fact it is documented that the come from a range of African countries. So why does the BBC never ask what the African Union is doing about this unfolding drama?
77% of the British population think that immigration is too high and should be controlled and reduced.
A small liberal, metropolitan elite think otherwise and are intent on importing as many immigrants as possible regardless of the consequences….and they are ready to denounce you as racist, xenophobic and Islamophobic in order to try and silence you and any criticism of them that you may have.
The pro-immigration lobby, of which the BBC is a prominent and powerful member, is fanatical and reckless in its abandonment of all reason as it presses for completely open borders to allow in unlimited numbers of people who have no loyalty to this country, no idea of its laws, its culture, its norms, and often have no intention of adhering to those anyway.
It is a quite extraordinary example of people who allow their ideology to over-rule common sense and a total and deliberate failure to address the issues that such a policy might result in, ultimately the total breakdown of the society this mass influx of immigrants profess they want to join and, we are told, will ‘improve’.
The UN’s special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants has said wealthy countries should agree to accept one million Syrian refugees over the next five years to help end the series of boat disasters.
Not sure millions of Muslims entering Europe would be good for social cohesion and stability.
The Times on Monday told us that 25% of Britons will be from an ethnic minority by 2051, double what the level is now….driven of course by immigration…the population rising to over 77 million.
This will have dramatic effects upon services, infrastructure and of course society itself especially if different groups fail to integrate and continue to segregate based on race or religion.
David Coleman, professor of demography at the the University of Oxford, said:
“Many of the consequences of large scale migration are damaging. We do not need up to 13 million more people by the mid century. Almost all that increase will be immigrants and their children. It will not make the UK a happier or richer place. Crowding and congestion will have entirely negative effects, increasing pressure on schools, hospitals and particulary housing.”
Simon Ross, director of Population Concern, said it was time people looked at the consequences migration had on quality of life.
“There’s a lot of people with vested interests in immigration, the universities and employers for instance….People talk about the taxes that migrants pay but that is a short term view. Migrants have children and get old and we need to take account of the services they will eventually use. We should not reduce migration simply to a taxation issue. We should talk about its effect on British society including the need for more housing which effects the green belt and transport infrastructure. These are quality of life issues.”
Such thoughts would be ‘ramping up the rhetoric’ and an unacceptable tone for Evan Davis and Co.
Is Britain becoming too diverse to sustain the mutual obligations behind a good society and the welfare state?
The nation state remains irreplaceable as the site for democratic participation and it is hard to imagine how else one can organise welfare states and redistribution except through national tax and public spending. Moreover, since the arrival of immigrant groups from non-liberal or illiberal cultures it has become clear that to remain liberal the state may have to prescribe a clearer hierarchy of values.
The gulf between conservative Islam and secular liberal Britain is larger than with any comparable large group….for those of us who value an open, liberal society it is time to explain why it is superior to the alternatives.
He told us that…
Some claim that if people understood Islam more everything would be fine, they would be more tolerant, I think quite the contrary….the more they understand about it the more alien they would find it…authoritarian, collectivist, patriarchal, misogynist…..all sorts of things that Britain might have been 100 years ago but isn’t now.
I believe in human equality and the unity of the human race, but I am sceptical about the economic benefits of large-scale immigration for the bottom half of British society, and worry about too much rapid change leading to segregation of communities and a withering of the kind of fellow-feeling needed to sustain welfare states.
There is nothing remarkable about those views and there are now plenty of others on the centre-Left who share them — Jon Cruddas gave my book a favourable review in the New Statesman — though official Labour remains somewhat uncertain of its position on this territory.
Like many metropolitan liberals I had very little direct experience of immigration yet I came to see it as beyond the normal trade-offs and interest calculations of political life. It was simple: good people were in favour of it, and bad, bigoted people were against it.
Alongside this belief was a twitchy ambivalence about my own country, no doubt reflecting a twitchy ambivalence about myself. Left-wing and liberal intellectual scepticism about the national was particularly strong in England because of its dominant imperial past.
I now, of course, believe this disdain for the national was immature and premature as well as loftily dismissive of majority opinion.
How did I come to change my mind about that and about large-scale immigration?
No doubt becoming a more grounded person and mixing with a wider spread of people knocked some of the undergraduate ideological gaucheness out of me as I entered my thirties. But what I like to think really changed my mind was good ideas, or openness to better ideas than I had been carrying around.
It was David Willetts, the leading Tory, who had first drawn my attention to the “progressive dilemma”. Speaking at a Prospect debate on the welfare state in 1998, he noted that if values and lifestyles become too diverse it becomes more difficult to sustain common norms and hence the legitimacy of a risk-pooling welfare state.
“This is America versus Sweden. You can have a Swedish welfare state provided you are a homogeneous society with intensely shared values. In the US you have a very diverse, individualistic society where people feel fewer obligations to fellow citizens. Progressives want diversity but they thereby undermine part of the moral consensus on which a large welfare state rests.”
That is to say, people are readier to share and co-operate with people whom they trust or with whom they believe they have significant attributes, and interests, in common.
Willetts’s dilemma seemed to me a true and powerful idea. I remember thinking when I first heard it: why is this issue not discussed more, particularly on the Left?
Having experienced the tribal irrationality of part of leftist Britain on the issue of diversity I found myself extending my critique to other aspects of the argument: the nature of community, the role of national identities in liberal societies and more.
The other idea that broke through my inchoate left-liberal instincts was even simpler than the progressive dilemma. It is this: embracing the idea of human equality does not mean we owe the same allegiance to everyone.
For most people commitments and allegiances ripple out from friends and family to neighbourhoods, towns and nations. This does not mean we should not care about the global poor. But we have a hierarchy of obligations that means we spend 30 times more every year on the NHS than we do on development aid. Is that wrong?
Immigration, at least on a significant scale, is hard for both incomer and receiver, especially when multi-generational poverty is being imported. People are not blank sheets, societies are not random collections of individuals, and objection to the arrival of a large number of outsiders in a community is not necessarily racist.
When middle-class social scientists like Michael Young in the 1950s and 1960s discovered what a high attachment people in working-class communities had to stability and continuity it was considered something to celebrate by left-wing sociologists. When people objected to that continuity being disrupted by the churn of mass immigration they were denounced.
From DCDC strategic trends document: Development Concepts and Doctrine Centre for the uk mod…a source document for uk defence policy: 2007-36
Mass Displacement. Conflict and crises will continue to trigger the displacement of large numbers of people, mainly into proximate regions, which may find themselves at risk of instability or exogenous shock.
Migration will increase in response to environmental pressures, deprivation and the perception of economic opportunities offered in towns and cities, as well as in wealthier regions and countries. Some 175m people, 3% of the world’s population, currently live outside their country of origin. That number is likely to grow to 230m by 2050
Identity & Interest – Potential Implications While citizenship and physical security will remain important, individual loyalty to the state and state institutions will become increasingly conditional, based on personal identity and interest. Nationhood and ethnicity in certain countries will continue to influence human behaviour and international relations. Diaspora communities and their networks will be dynamic and unpredictable features of the political, demographic and economic aspects of globalization. Physical and cultural origin will continue to be significant to identity, but will be employed increasingly selectively, based on their utility in context and in relation to personal interest. Communities will increasingly form around the pursuit of common interests.
Dynamic Diaspora. ICT developments and advanced mass-transit systems will facilitate and increase connectivity between ethnic/national diasporae and their communities of origin. This will tend to reduce incentives for integration and assimilation and allow self-contained ‘virtual’ communities to exist across continents in ways not always in step with the interest and aspirations of their host countries. Remittances from members of diasporae will remain an important source of capital transfer and redistribution, especially for developing countries. Less benignly, diaspora will remain a medium for the international transmission of social risk, including: inter-communal violence, terrorism and transnational crime, especially trafficking and illicit trade.
Changing Values. Secularism and materialism are likely to grow in significance in an increasingly competitive, inter-connected world, reflecting trends that are already well established in the more developed regions. Meanwhile, cultural mixing, the pace of change and a rapid confluence of modern ideas and traditional values are likely to increase the trend towards moral relativism and increasingly pragmatic values. These developments will trigger responses from complex, traditionally defined communities, as well as among significant minorities, which will seek the sanctuary provided by more rigid belief systems, including religious orthodoxy and doctrinaire political ideologies, such as popularism and Marxism.
States and Communities will be progressively challenged by the range and complexity of the national and transnational risks that are beginning to dominate the 21st century – and some will not cope.
The expansion of global media and Information Communications Technology (ICT) will heighten the sense of grievance and marginalization between ‘haves and have-nots’, nationally and internationally. This is likely to lead to populism, human crises and confrontations, typified by inter-communal and inter-ethnic conflicts at local level, but, when related to access to strategic resources necessary to sustain developed or developing economies, may increase the incidence and risk of international confrontation. Communicable disease will continue to be a feature of human life; while familiar diseases will be eradicated or mitigated through prophylaxis or cure, others will emerge, of varying intensity and impact, alongside the constant risk of low incidence, but potentially high impact, pandemics.
Evan Davis interviewed Nigel Farage and it went pretty much as you might expect, Davis not focussing on policy but instead intent on painting Farage as some sort of racist rabble rouser who uses unnecessarily inflammatory language.
The BBC website’s follow up was equally determined to paint a similar picture and uses a snearing tone to undermine and discredit Farage as incompetent or ‘angry’. The headline of their report itself is an indicator of what the BBC wants you to think…..they have decided what is important in the interview and highlighted it…but it was their question that set up the premise about Farage’s ‘tone’ and it was they who decided this was an issue, it is the BBC, Evan Davis, who insinuates that Farage’s ‘tone’ is somehow unacceptable….and that Farage used it cynically, not really meaning what he said about immigration, in order merely to ‘get noticed’….
Farage ‘used tone to get noticed’
The problem with that is what do they mean by ‘tone’? Judging by the way the interview went ‘tone’ is not tone of voice, it is not the way you say something, not the language you use, but in this case it is the content of what Farage says….that immigration must be controlled and that multiculturalism has led to various segregated communities that are unhealthy for society…..apparently that is the ‘tone’ that is unacceptable.
Davis only really began the interview (and this is where Newsnight decided to start their edit of the interview from) when he started to ask about UKIP’s polling numbers and linked it to ‘image’ saying that UKIP was polling less than support for its policies might suggest because…..‘there might be a whiff of meanness and divisiveness about the Party’.
Farage tried to answer but was constantly interrupted by Davis who then declared that he think’s this has something to do with your tone, the way you talk about immigration.
So that’s the usual Evan Davis Stalinist-like show trial technique in operation….label someone a racist, demand they prove themselves innocent, interrupt so they can’t explain themselves and then tell them they are racist ….and then declare ‘let’s move on’ before the victim has a chance to object.
So Davis has already set up Farage as somewhat sinister and possibly racist and then tries to ‘prove’ his own labelling of Farage by using the ‘proof’ of his own interpretation of how Farage talks about immigration…naturally Davis, an ardent pro-immigration extremist himself, thinks anyone who talks about controlling immigration is wrong.
But never mind that Davis not only labels Farage with a strawman argument and then goes on to ‘prove’ it with his own thoughts, is he right that UKIP is polling low because it looks ‘mean and divisive’ due to Farage’s ‘tone’?
One reason is that UKIP has been under sustained attack from nearly every news outlet with their own vested interests intent on discrediting and underming UKIP…but even that isn’t the major cause for the low poll ratings.
The real reason UKIP polls low is that people recognise the bigger picture…vote UKIP and you may well end up with Miliband….vote Tory you will at least get a vote on Europe, under Labour you definitely won’t….so one major issue for UKIP supporters has been hijacked by Cameron…..and they also know that UKIP will not, certainly in this election, become a party that can win a majority and fulfill its promise to take us out of Europe and cut immigration….so they vote tactically, and certainly many Tory voters who might vote UKIP will remain Tory although many disgruntled Labour voters may well decide UKIP is less disagreeable than voting Tory.
Davis’ interpretation is wrong and coloured entirely by his own issues with immigration and Europe, not to mention HIV and its associations with Gays in relation to Farage’s comments on HIV positive immigrants and the NHS.
The BBC website tells us….
[Farage] does plenty of interviews and he’s got two televised debates under his belt, but this was probably the toughest exchange so far.
During a half hour of intense scrutiny Nigel Farage was at times tetchy, even angry. “I’m not having this,” he said, when he accused his interrogator of misquoting him. “I don’t hate anything” he said when he thought words were being put in his mouth. “I couldn’t care less,” he said – twice – when pushed on one sensitive issue. He was combative and he stood his ground.
But the interview did emphasise one thing – numbers are not his strong point. On UKIP’s plan for big tax cuts and deficit reduction he was nonchalant in saying “dynamic growth” in the economy – more revenue from less tax – was the secret to it working.
Farage’s ‘toughest exchange yet’? Hardly think so….LBC’s James O’Brien’s kangaroo court was by far the ‘toughest’ if only for the continual stream of made up accusations and half-truths O’Brien attempted to lynch Farage with…and yet Farage kept his cool and showed O’Brien to be less than credible as an interviewer and distinctly dishonest. Evan Davis was less dramatic but had the same intent as O’Brien, to smear Farage with whatever trumped up charge came to hand.
At one point Davis played a clip from an interview Farage did on Fox News about the rise of radical Islam in the aftermath of Charlie Hebdo and claimed this was an example of an unacceptable tone. It was in fact Farage merely saying what many, many other people, from politicians, to journalists, to academics, have said.
Davis seems to be saying that any criticism of Islam is unacceptable and shouldn’t be voiced lest we ‘upset’ Muslims, making them feel ‘under siege’.…leading to radicalisation. The BBC seems to have no problem with a communtiy that says ‘If you criticise us we will turn nasty’….but does have a problem with anyone who suggest FGM, or polygamy, extreme intolerance, or indeed extremism based upon religion, is wrong.
Farage and Davis get sidetracked as to whether Farage in the clip is talking about Islam in the UK, he actually was in that BBC clip, but the interview as a whole was about radical Islam generally and was based upon events in Paris and so Farage, having done so many interviews, may be excused for not remembering the exact details of the clip…especially as it was edited to be very short and without context.
Cuious that Davis thinks this is ‘mean and divisive’……..
Davis dismisses the claim that the Archbishop of Canterbury said we should accept Sharia law in the UK by saying ‘He was misunderstood’.
No, no he wasn’t. He quite clearly ssaid that we should accept a parallel system of law based upon Sharia…because….if we don’t it will upset Muslims and there will be a ‘breakdown in cohesion’...what could he possibly mean by that?
“as a matter of fact certain provisions of sharia are already recognised in our society and under our law” ……. “the application of sharia in certain circumstances – if we want to achieve this cohesion and take seriously peoples’ religion – seems unavoidable?”
Dr Rowan Williams told Radio 4’s World at One that the UK has to “face up to the fact” that some of its citizens do not relate to the British legal system.
Dr Williams argues that adopting parts of Islamic Sharia law would help maintain social cohesion.
Dr Williams said an approach to law which simply said “there’s one law for everybody and that’s all there is to be said, and anything else that commands your loyalty or allegiance is completely irrelevant in the processes of the courts – I think that’s a bit of a danger”.
“There’s a place for finding what would be a constructive accommodation with some aspects of Muslim law, as we already do with some other aspects of religious law.”
So we must accept that Muslims do not want to be ruled by British law and must have their own legal system…and whatever else they want to keep them happy and quiet.
Farage was right, Davis wrong on that important point.
Things then got surreal with Davis suggesting the recent children’s film about Paddington Bear showed the wonders of immigration and multi-culturalism….‘a proclamation of the virtues of multiculturalism which I know you hate…’
Farage then objected to the word ‘hate’ as it was perjorative and seemingly designed to be a ‘ramping up of the rhetoric’ about him by Davis.
MANY Britons were raised on tales of Paddington, the second-best-known bear in fiction after Winnie-the-Pooh. A kind of ursine Jacques Tati, the well-meaning Paddington caused chaos wherever he went through a mixture of clumsiness and cultural misunderstanding; the best moments usually involved his clashes with pompous British officialdom.
A new film version, directed and written by Paul King, focuses on a quality for which the British once prided themselves—a welcoming attitude towards refugees. An archetypal British explorer called Montgomery Clyde (who travels with grand piano and grandfather clock) meets Paddington’s aunt and uncle, introduces them to the joys of marmalade, and tells them of the warm welcome they can expect in London. When an earthquake destroys their home in “darkest Peru”, Paddington is duly sent to London to seek shelter.
[Laughed at this bit..]
If this interpretation had been served up by the BBC, the publicly subsidised national broadcaster, the howls of protest from the Daily Mail and Nigel Farage, leader of the anti-immigrant UK Independence Party, would have been deafening.
It was a reminder that UKIP polls relatively poorly in multicultural London and that its national ratings are still in the mid-teens, well below the Front National in France.
Not everyone in Britain is a “little Englander”; a lot of people, if they met Mr Farage, would be tempted to follow Paddington’s example and give him “a particularly hard stare”.