Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Good King Wenceslas, York Minster 1995

A very merry Christmas to every reader of this blog.

Good King Wenceslas looked out

On the feast of Stephen

When the snow lay round about

Deep and crisp and even

Brightly shone the moon that night

Though the frost was cruel

When a poor man came in sight

Gath'ring winter fuel

"Hither, page, and stand by me

If thou know'st it, telling

Yonder peasant, who is he?

Where and what his dwelling?"

"Sire, he lives a good league hence

Underneath the mountain

Right against the forest fence

By Saint Agnes' fountain."

"Bring me flesh and bring me wine

Bring me pine logs hither

Thou and I will see him dine

When we bear them thither."

Page and monarch forth they went

Forth they went together

Through the rude wind's wild lament

And the bitter weather

"Sire, the night is darker now

And the wind blows stronger

Fails my heart, I know not how,

I can go no longer."

"Mark my footsteps, good my page

Tread thou in them boldly

Thou shalt find the winter's rage

Freeze thy blood less coldly."

In his master's steps he trod

Where the snow lay dinted

Heat was in the very sod

Which the Saint had printed

Therefore, Christian men, be sure

Wealth or rank possessing

Ye who now will bless the poor

Shall yourselves find blessing

It's a Wonderful Life (1946)

Monday, 19 December 2011

Our money, safe in their hands?

Acknowledgements to the Telegraph.co.uk web site

EU hands out holidays paid for by taxpayer

Tens of thousands of political activists, including hundreds from the BNP, have been given free or subsidised holidays by British and European taxpayers.

By Andrew Gilligan

18 Dec 2011

Even as it grapples with the financial crisis, the European Union is paying almost £25 million this year to subsidise the trips, arranged through MEPs.

The BNP, which has two Euro-MPs, has made heavy use of the scheme to thank some of its most prominent members at taxpayers’ expense. One BNP official boasted that it was “a good way of rewarding our activists” that “didn’t cost the party a penny”.

The trips are ostensibly “study visits” to the European Parliament buildings in Brussels or Strasbourg, but the holidaymakers need spend only a fraction of their time at the parliament to claim the full subsidy, which can be collected in cash without the need for receipts.

One subsidised trip to Strasbourg last week, promoted by the Labour MEP Peter Skinner, lasted six days, with only a few hours spent at the parliament.

The rest of the visit, according to a programme seen by The Sunday Telegraph, included a river cruise, a tour of the cathedral, a visit to the city’s Christmas market, champagne tasting, a battlefield tour in Ypres and sightseeing in Reims. Like most MEPs, Mr Skinner did not join the party, but hosted a free dinner for the participants.

Just under 30 people went on the tour, according to Mr Skinner’s office, staying in £100-a-night hotels in Ypres, Reims and the German spa town of Baden-Baden, near Strasbourg.

“After a buffet breakfast in the sunny Great Room, take your coffee on to the terrace to enjoy views of the picturesque Black Forest,” the Baden-Baden hotel’s website says.

"Stroll beside the meandering River Oos and admire the Belle-Epoque mansions on Lichtentaler Allee. Play for high stakes at the glamorous Spielbank casino, and unwind in the soothing waters of Caracalla Spa.”

The cost of the six-day trip, including some meals, all accommodation, tours, coach and ferry, was £272. If booked directly, the hotels alone would have cost about £500 at this time of year.

One of those who went on the trip, Juan Leahy, who works for Mr Skinner, declined to comment when asked if it was mostly a “holiday”.

A spokesman for the European Parliamentary Labour Party said: “We believe the public should have the opportunity to see their elected officials at work, and we do not want this opportunity restricted to the rich who can afford travel.”

Stephen Booth, of the reform group Open Europe, said: “Spending taxpayers’ money on what are effectively subsidised holidays can only further erode public trust in the EU institutions.

"The European Parliament seems to exist in a parallel universe, completely ignorant of economic realities.”

Politicians of all parties help to arrange the trips. Hornchurch and Upminster Conservative Association advertised a break to Brussels, including return travel by Eurostar and a night in a city centre hotel, for £80.

“We have almost a whole day to sight-see, wander around the Christmas market and pick up inspiration for gifts,” said the association’s website.

Bill Newton-Dunn, the Liberal Democrat MEP, promoted a three-day weekend break in Brussels this month for £205, advertising it on his website as a “Christmas shopping” trip.

The visit to the European Parliament lasted two hours on the Monday morning, just before the guests left for home.

The BNP has made extensive use of the subsidies to reward donors to its Trafalgar Club, who last year were hosted on a three-day visit to Bruges at EU expense by Nick Griffin, the party’s leader and an MEP. Ninety-two Trafalgar Club and life members took part.

Mr Griffin said: “Everyone really enjoyed the opportunity to meet and socialise with like-minded people who care about our country.”

Other BNP outings include trips to the First World War battlefields and Waterloo. Pictures on the website of Eddy Butler, a BNP [MEP's] staff member, show the party enjoying their “second breakfast of the day” at a Brussels café.

In the evening, the group enjoyed a taxpayer-subsidised dinner, at what another participant, Chris Beverley, called “the wonderfully atmospheric Bivouac de l’Empereur restaurant”.

“Everyone knew they could let their hair down and relax, safe in the knowledge that they were among good nationalists, men and women of honour,” he added.

One BNP trip, in March last year, cost taxpayers €10,791 (£9,775) for 44 participants, an average of £220 a head. It was free for those who took part, according to the organiser, Mr Butler, and even made the BNP a profit.

“The subsidy is for a set amount,” said Mr Butler. “There is no provision to pay back what you don’t use. The organiser of the trip can use any residue for whatever he sees fit: this is quite legitimate.”

Mr Butler said he had donated the profits to the BNP.

In a report last month, the Court of Auditors, Europe’s spending watchdog, criticised this aspect of the scheme, warning that “the procedures in place do not require groups to provide evidence of travel costs, resulting in a risk of overpayment as most groups use cheaper collective transport”.

The subsidy for the journey from London to Brussels amounts to £85 a head, but Eurostar offers a return ticket for £69, and travelling in a privately hired coach can cost as little as £25.

From Edinburgh to Brussels the travel subsidy would be £225, but a return flight with Ryanair costs as little as £49.

The meal subsidy is set at £30 a person, but since no receipts are required visitors can buy cheaper meals and pocket the difference.

According to the Court of Auditors, 78 per cent of the payments to trip organisers last year were made in cash. This “limited the possibility of applying internal control procedures”, the watchdog warned.

Mr Butler defended the visits, saying: “Everyone had fun and it didn’t cost the party a penny. The trips are a good way of rewarding our activists for their hard work and dedication. Should we feel guilty for the Euro taxpayer? Certainly not.”

Each of the 736 MEPs is allowed to sponsor up to 110 visitors a year, although not all use their full quota. The visitors must travel in groups of at least 10. The trips are promoted to supporters on email lists and websites.

Some are advertised on the MEPs’ websites and are not confined to sympathisers, although in practice most of the holidaymakers are political activists.

The European Parliament declined to give the number of British participants in the trips, but figures for the last available year, 2007, show that British visitors claimed €938,000 (£600,000) in subsidies.

The cost of the schemes for all 27 EU nations this year is €29.7 million (£24.9 million), a 40 per cent rise since 2007. As Britain’s share of the EU budget this year is 12 per cent, taxpayers are contributing £3 million to the programme.

A spokesman for the European Parliament said: “It is essential to the exercise of democratic rights within the European Union for members of the public to be granted access to the parliament’s proceedings and premises.”

The parliament said that better controls on the payments would be too “complex and time-consuming”.

A German joke is no laughing matter

Acknowledgements to the telegraph.co.uk web site

Fiddling as the euro burns

It is, said the foreign minister whose country holds the EU presidency, "the edge of a precipice the scariest moment of my ministerial life."

By Andrew Gilligan

03 Dec 2011

The chief executives of Shell, Unilever and Phillips called it "one minute to midnight." Even the EU's own financial affairs commissioner, Olli Rehn, says Europe only has ten days to stop the euro falling apart.

By this coming Friday, the ninth of those ten days, the continent's leaders are supposed to have agreed a plan that satisfies the markets and gives their tottering currency a future. They have tried, and failed, three times this year already. A fourth failure would probably be the end. But in the Brussels corridors, with the sands fast running out, you really wouldn't know that these are perhaps the most dangerous times in Europe since the Second World War.

At the Berlaymont, the Commission HQ, on Thursday, they were proudly launching their "better airports package." "There is no Commission proposal for the auctioning of new airport capacity," explained an official. "The decision was to go ahead with liberalising the secondary trading of existing slots." Across the road the European Council, the ministerial decision making body, was busy on a resolution deciding that member states must "combat negative stereotypes regarding older persons" and demanding that "optimism has to prevail in the EU." The week before, the Commission announced a new drive to "protect our sharks," proclaiming it a "very good day, not just for European sharks, but for sharks worldwide." The sharks in question were the finned, not the financial, variety.

The European Parliament was doing a little better. Mario Draghi, the new head of the European Central Bank, addressed MEPs on ways out of the crisis. His speech was easily the most important thing said in this particular building for years. Amazingly, however, he made it to an almost empty chamber. Of the 736 MEPs, about 700 – or 95 per cent – were elsewhere. Still, never mind. They had a key meeting later on the subject of "online gambling at a policy crossroads: towards an EU regulatory approach or increased member states' co-operation?"

Parliament still teemed with people discussing the EU unitary patent and the Euro-Ukraine association deal. MEPs and their staff could still have their hair done at the "Guy Alexandre" salon. In the members' restaurant, there was honey – or rather filet de poulet avec sauce chasseur – still for tea. But as the world's most expensive ship, with its glittering passenger load of ex-social workers from Brighton and lecturers from Lower Saxony, sailed closer to the iceberg, you could hear the distinct sound of deckchair rearrangement.

It is because the EU, at all levels, has consistently failed to rise to the occasion that it now finds itself in a position where it might never pass another "better airports package" or online gambling policy crossroad; where its currency, the euro, might not reach adolescence, let alone old age; where merely declaring your support for something – optimism, say, or economic and monetary union – is no longer enough to make it succeed.

"I don't know whether we will have an EU in six months' time," says Sharon Bowles, the British Lib Dem MEP who chairs the parliament's economic and monetary affairs committee. Asked whether she meant the EU or the euro, she said: "I don't think we'll have either it's game over." Ms Bowles and the Commission's president, José Manuel Barroso, are among those pushing one of the only things which can halt the slide – the creation of "eurobonds," mutual debt instruments backed by all the euro states collectively, with the strongest standing behind the weaker ones. But both eurobonds, and any use of the European Central Bank as lender of last resort, have been blocked in the place that would have to pay for most of them, and which really makes the decisions these days: Berlin.

Along the EU's 24 miles of neutrally-carpeted corridors, in all its airport-style bars with their little high tables and chairs, there is a feeling of powerlessness and denial. Asked to sketch out what would happen if the euro went down, one top official said: "I am trying not to think about it." There are reports, including in the Economist, that commission staff have been scrabbling around for ways to protect their savings, though local banks told The Sunday Telegraph that they had seen no increase in withdrawals. The shark protection initiatives and the rest are not just the bureaucracy grinding on as usual; they are important displacement activity to take people's minds off catastrophe.

One staff member for a pro-European British MEP laughed as she played me the latest YouTube video from the European Central Bank on her smartphone: a new six-minute PR film to "celebrate" the tenth anniversary, next month, of the introduction of the euro. "Europe is more than just a place on the map," purred the commentary. "With its shared values and achievements, Europe builds bridges and inspires hope." "It's surreal, isn't it?" she said. "At a time when Europe is going back to being just a place on the map, they do this." The Germans' solution, as their chancellor, Angela Merkel, announced on Friday, is essentially to make the whole of Europe more like Germany: a fiscal Euro-superstate or, more unkindly, a financial semi-dictatorship. Euro countries' taxation and spending would be placed under much tighter control from Brussels to stop the kind of "misbehaviour" that has got Greece and Italy into trouble. The French support the idea too, though they want it to be done inter-governmentally rather than through the EU.

The EU is perhaps not the ideal organisation to enforce fiscal discipline. It is, of course, a body whose auditors have for the last 17 years running refused to sign off its own budget because of "material errors" amounting, last year, to 3.7 per cent of all its expenditure. The EU's financial control systems were, the auditors said, "only partially effective." Nearly 40 per cent of its agro-environmental aid budget, they found, went to farms on which there were no environmental problems on site or within a seven-mile radius. And the EU budget is a mere £105 billion, a minute fraction of the sums it is supposed to be supervising under the German plan.

But there are bigger problems with Berlin's idea than that. First, it will need time to take effect: time that the euro may not have. It will have to be agreed, probably with a treaty amendment, then implemented successfully, perhaps in the face of significant opposition from electorates. And even more importantly, it might be the wrong answer anyway, on its own.

The Germans believe that "the structure of the eurozone is fine, all you need to do is cure errant behaviour within it," says Philip Whyte, senior research fellow at the pro-EU Centre for European Reform (CER).

"To me, that doesn't cut it. The structure itself is badly flawed, and to compensate for those flaws they are imposing the policies of the 1930s. The only way the likes of Italy can repay their debts is to grow, but austerity is killing growth and making the problems worse." In Greece, the country furthest along the road, austerity and discipline is clearly not working; the cuts have hammered domestic demand and driven Greece even further into debt. It is hard to see how Greece can realistically stay in the euro. A Greek exit would put further pressure on Italy.

"My hunch is that [next week's] plan will fail. It is not going to be enough," says Whyte, who says there is now a "fifty-fifty" chance of the euro's collapse. "We already have a slow-motion run on the banking system in certain countries. If that starts gathering pace, and we start having TV pictures like Northern Rock, it could spread very quickly to Italy or Spain." By the end of last week, the panic had subsided a bit: Italian bond yields fell back to about 6.5 per cent. Senior figures in Brussels were sounding a bit more hopeful. "In return for her fiscal union, we are hopeful that Mrs Merkel will, at this week's summit, make some kind of movement towards allowing shorter-term fiscal relief," said one high official. "She is under pressure from a lot of countries and she does not want to be held responsible for the collapse of the euro." There is talk of essentially laundering extra bail-out money through the IMF, or turning the bail-out fund itself into a bank. Even eurobonds are hovering somewhere in the background.

Mrs Merkel is moving. For some, the key question is whether she will move far or fast enough to save the euro. But as the currency tries to couple together fundamentally divergent economies, the more important question is whether anything can save it.

Opposite the Euro-Parliament, with spectacularly bad timing, a new visitors' centre has just opened extolling the "fascinating world" of the EU. In classic fashion, it is three years late and 50 per cent over budget (a bargain £15.5 million.) There's even a souvenir shop, where you can buy euro note tissues and a wall-clock in the likeness of a one-euro coin. Sales, alas, have been slow.

Desperate-looking teenagers, dragged along by their schools, pass a long montage of pictures intended to depict Europe's journey from nationalist darkness into the EU light. The Fifties, quite a prosperous time for most, are shown as a decade of poverty and gloom, but once the EU gets going the pictures cheer up. The ones showing scapegrace Britain are mainly of riots, protests and derelict factories throughout.

"National sovereignty is the root cause of the most crying evils of our time," says a quote, in English, on one wall of the exhibition.

"The only final remedy for this supreme and catastrophic evil is a federal union of the peoples." But right by this inspiring statement, a group of Italian tourists is struggling with their state-of-the-art audioguides to get it translated into their own language: as good a demonstration as you could want of the essential fantasy of a federal union, and the enduring nature of national difference.

MEP = My Expenses' Profit?

Saturday, 17 December 2011

What was the motive for this murder?

Teenager killed outside his mother's house 'had throat slashed by [black] gang'

By Daily Mail Reporter

4th December 2011

A teenager has been viciously stabbed to death as he tried to flee a gang of [black] youths.

The victim, named locally as Danny O'Shea, was chased and had his throat slashed outside his mother's front door in Newham, east London last night.

Paramedics fought for 30 minutes to save the 18-year-old's life, but he was pronounced dead at the scene in front of horrified neighbours at 6.50pm.

Police have yet to establish whether the teen's mother was in at the time when her son was chased 300 yards before the attack outside the house.

Tributes have already started pouring in to a memorial group on Facebook, which has attracted over 500 people.

Friends of Danny O'Shea today said the 18-year-old 'wouldn't hurt a fly'.

Danny's family were said to be too 'devastated' to speak about his death.

However a friend, speaking outside the family home, said: 'Danny wouldn't hurt a fly, he was completely harmless. 'His family are devastated.'

A large patch of dried blood was still clearly visible opposite the groundfloor flat. A door of a neighbour's home had been taken off for forensic testing and replaced.

Paramedics tried to revive Danny at the scene, but he was pronounced dead shortly after. There have been no arrests and police are appealing for witnesses to come forward.

Piles of flowers covered the drive of the family home, with balloons, a single candle and pictures with tributes including one from his sister reading 'to my darling bro, we love you so much.

'Dan you're one in 1000's millions RIP. Angel forever, love Jessie, Georgie, James, Lauren, Isabella and Phoebe.'

A steady stream of family and friends visited the family home, many in tears and some carrying flowers.

The teen's grandfather, Michael O'Shea, told The Sunday Mirror: 'He was a wonderful lad. We're all in shock.'

A police spokesman said earlier that next of kin had been informed but formal identification had not yet taken place.

There have been no arrests.

John MacDonald, detective chief inspector of the Homicide and Serious Crime Command, said: 'We believe that the victim may have been chased from Butchers Road at the junction of Hooper Road down into Boreham Avenue, E16.

'The people chasing him comprised of a group of black males.' [Emphasis mine].

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2069572/Murder-hunt-teenager-chased-gang-youths-stabbed-death-street.html#ixzz1gnOt9ULv

Friday, 16 December 2011

UKIP push BNP into fifth place

These are the voting figures for the Feltham and Heston parliamentary by-election which was held yesterday.

Congratulations to British National Party candidate Dave Furness and his campaign team on beating both the Greens and the English Democrats.

The failure to beat the UKIP candidate and the sharp decline in the BNP's share of the vote since the general election are attributable, in equal measure, to Mr Griffin's profound personal unpopularity with voters and to the consequences of his unintelligent leadership of the party.

Seema Malhotra, Labour - 12,639 (54.42%, +10.79%)

Mark Bowen, Conservative - 6,436 (27.71%, -6.32%)

Roger Crouch, Liberal Democrats - 1,364 (5.87%, -7.87%)

Andrew Charalambous, UKIP - 1,276 (5.49%, +3.45%)

David Furness, BNP - 540 (2.33%, -1.21%)

Daniel Goldsmith, Green - 426 (1.83%, +0.74%)

Roger Cooper, English Democrats - 322 (1.39%)

George Hallam, London People Before Profit - 128 (0.55%)

David Bishop, Bus-Pass Elvis Party - 93 (0.40%)

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

European 'parliament' a poison chalice

"Drink hearty, Friend"
Back in the summer of 2009 there was an understandable elation within the upper echelon of the British National Party.

Nick Griffin addressed a victory rally not long after his and Andrew Brons' election as MEPs and wiped a tear from his eye, as he thanked the assembled activists for all their hard work in helping to get him elected to the European 'parliament'.

Why do I put that word parliament in inverted commas?  Because the European 'parliament' is not a real, not a proper parliament at all.  It cannot initiate its own legislation for one thing.  Virtually all it can do is to say 'yea' or 'nay' to proposals emanating from the European Commission, which is an international bureaucracy of unelected civil servants that actually drafts proposed legislation.

In fact we, as nationalists, should be glad that the European 'parliament' has as little power as it has.  The more like a genuine parliament it becomes, or is allowed to become, the more like a state in its own right becomes the confederation of the European Union (EU).

Now, there is a great deal of ignorance and apathy amongst the electorate regarding the European Union.  This can be evidenced by looking at the average turn out in European 'parliament' elections and comparing it with the average turn out in a general election.  It's roughly half the general election turn out (which itself is only about two-thirds of the electorate) and similar to that in most local elections.

It's not that the electorate are happy with Britain's membership of the European Union.  They're not, as opinion polls and surveys regularly demonstrate.  No, it's that, uneducated as they may be about the minutiae of the structure and procedures of the European Union, they do at least understand that electing MEPs to its 'parliament' cannot have any direct influence on whether Britain remains a part of the EU or not.

To put matters bluntly: we cannot leave the EU by winning greater representation within its 'parliament'.  When you're in a hole you stop digging.  You don't, if you have any sense, try to dig your way to Australia.  We can leave the EU only by winning significant representation at Westminster and securing a majority vote of MPs (not MEPs) for the repeal of the European Communities Act 1972, which took us into that association.

It follows from this that British parliamentary elections and by-elections, rather than European 'parliament' elections, should be the main focus of our party's electoral efforts and that local elections should come a close second.  Local election campaigns, with the aim of ultimately winning control of local authorities, are the best stepping-stone to winning seats at Westminster.  It is no accident that the voting system for elections to the European 'parliament' (viz, proportional representation and party list) has been made easier for small parties than that for elections to either local councils or the national parliament (viz, first past the post).

The vastness of Euro constituencies, the party list and multi-member mode of representation, as well as the fact that the European 'parliament' is rightly perceived by the electorate to be nothing more than a gilded talking shop, all militate against a high rate of voter participation in Euro elections. The same factors also militate against the transferability of a political party's success in Euro elections to success in the more traditional and in the final analysis much more important, council elections and parliamentary elections.

The example of UKIP and its baker's dozen of MEPs should be a warning to us.  Has UKIP been able to build on its success in accumulating so many MEPs?  Has it been able to transfer that success to council and Westminster elections?  It has not.

The European 'parliament' is a political dead end, the graveyard of political careers and of small parties alike.  It is surely no accident that the emoluments and allowances of MEPs are so much more lavish than those of MPs, who do at least have something more closely approximating a proper job of work to do, while the regulatory oversight of MEPs' expense claims is so much more lax than the regime for MPs.

Why should MEPs receive, as they do, a much larger allowance for employing staff than MPs receive, when MPs have a much greater workload than MEPs?

I suggest that the answer lies in the latent function of the European 'parliament', as envisaged by those foreign 'statesmen' and senior civil servants who first established it and have overseen its subsequent development.

The European 'parliament' is, in effect, an enormous honey trap.  A five star Siberia, it assimilates those who were elected on a platform of secession with practised ease, insidiously encouraging them to 'go native' and to dissipate their precious time and energy where their activity can do least harm to the status quo.  The same applies to the MEP's staff.  An MEP does not only withdraw himself for much of the time, both physically and mentally, from the scene of the main action, when he is elected 'to Brussels.  He also withdraws and preoccupies a number of his closest political allies, when he appoints them to his staff.  We have seen the adverse effect of this in the marked decline in the quality of leadership our party has received since the summer of 2009.

All of this is well understood by the Establishment and the enormous salaries and allowances of MEPs are regarded as money well spent, in order to neutralize effective political opposition.  The Eurocrats pre-empt real opposition by diverting MEPs from their key national concerns and the problems of their constituents, towards, inter alia, foreign 'fact-finding' junkets, international conferences, overseas speaking engagements and the forging of 'useful' European links.

This process of 'house-training' MEPs obviously takes longer with some individuals than with others.  Some take to the life-style more readily than others.  But it must surely exercise its influence on every MEP.  Its influence is not conducive to the furtherance of the nationalist cause.

I should like to propose that in future, post-Griffin, that is, the European 'parliament' be put back in its box.  It has been played with enough.  If European 'parliament' elections are to be contested at all, it should be clear to everyone that such an effort takes second place, or rather third place, in our party's order of priorities, behind the effort to elect councillors and MPs and the maintenance of a proper system of support and training for those who are elected.

Furthermore, in the event of MEPs being elected, I suggest that consideration be given to a principled policy of abstentionism.  The Euro election having been contested, perhaps in only our two strongest regions, primarily for the purpose of promulgating the party's message, any nationalist candidate elected could choose to boycott sittings of the European 'parliament', as a remonstrance against Britain's continuing membership of the EU.  Nationalist MEPs should appreciate that simply by attending sessions of the European 'parliament' and its committees they are, unavoidably, helping to lend the institution and hence the EU as a whole, a credibility and a legitimacy to which it has no right.

A consistent policy of abstentionism would not only make a bold political statement in its own right, but would also enable MEPs and their staff to use their time more productively, in their own country and in their own region.

I do not necessarily expect this analysis and these proposals to be well received by either of our MEPs, or for that matter by their respective staff.  But then telling people only what they want to hear has never been my forte.

Forget Trinity - there can be only three

Acknowledgements to the web site of TheJournal.ie

BNP’s Nick Griffin set to address UCC society on free speech

BRITISH NATIONAL PARTY leader and MEP Nick Griffin is expected to attend a UCC [University College Cork] debate in the New Year, just months after a Trinity College student society withdrew its invitation for the controversial politician to visit.

The UCC Government and Politics Society says Griffin has accepted its invitation to speak in a debate on the importance of free speech in modern society.

The society’s chairperson Ben English told TheJournal.ie that its invitation to Griffin “is by no means a defence of what he has to say, rather it is a defence of his right to say it”.

English said Griffin will face an as-yet-unnamed second speaker in a chaired debate on free speech before taking questions from the floor.

The society decided to invite him after his invitation to address a student group at Trinity College was withdrawn recently. English said that the student group wanted to stand up in support of free speech, adding that free speech is not objective: “We can’t decide who gets freedom of speech [sic].”

In these kinds of situations, and in Trinity’s case, college groups should not cave to outside pressures, English said.

“You need to make tough decisions and bring in people who are going to cause a bit of controversy; in the long-run it’s an event that needs to be held. People need to see something new. Our society is trying to move away from the discourse and get people talking,” [sic] he said. “The society’s main goal is to encourage students who are generally politically apathetic to engage in debate.”

English said the society has met with college staff to notify them of the event and to put “strict plans in place” to ensure the safety of staff, students and Griffin. The college has indicated it will facilitate the event, he added.

The BNP confirmed to TheJournal.ie today that Griffin is interested in participating in the debate and has accepted the invitation. A spokesperson for the party said the MEP would answer any questions put to him by the debate participants or audience.


The BNP leader was due to participate in a debate on immigration at Trinity’s Philosophical Society in October, but the society withdrew its invitation after the college said it could not guarantee the safety of the event’s attendees.

The society said that while it supports Griffin’s right to speak on the issue of immigration, it felt it had “no other responsible choice” but to cancel the debate over safety concerns.

Griffin accused people protesting his Trinity appearance of using “fascist methods” to disrupt the event. He also said he complained to gardaí about the protests which disrupted a separate society event and led to the cancellation of the one he was to attend.

A date for the UCC events has not been confirmed, but it is expected to take place in late February 2012.

Not a colossus, more of a pygmy really

A few years ago a former British ambassador to the United States published a memoir which was very damning of his erstwhile political masters.  One of the epithets he used was the word pygmies.

It may well be that numerous pygmies were deeply offended at having been compared with the like of Jack Straw, Geoff Hoon and John Prescott. 

As John Prescott once said when addressing a Labour Party conference and indeed as Nick Griffin might be saying to himself right now, "With a team like this behind me, how can I not lose?"

Acknowledgements to the news.bbc.co.uk web site

Political hot water

On Sunday, 13 November, 2005, Andrew Marr interviewed Sir Christopher Meyer, the former British ambassador to the USA, on the BBC Sunday AM show.

ANDREW MARR: Now, the publication on Thursday of Sir Christopher Meyer's memoirs has delighted everyone who enjoys top level gossip and dismayed those who think that diplomats have a lifelong duty to be very diplomatic.

Sir Christopher was our man in Washington in the run up to the Iraq War and before that served as official spokesman and confidant to the Prime Minister John Major.

In the book Meyer writes of his time as ambassador and a succession of Labour ministerial visitors - pygmies, in his words - Jack Straw was tongue-tied, stumbling, with an uncertain touch; John Prescott insisted on discussing the full range of foreign policy issues but never appeared sufficiently up on them and got into a terrible tangle.

Tony Blair is described as failing to use his leverage on Bush and asks at the height of the Lewinsky affair "What exactly is Clinton supposed to have done?"

Sir Christopher is also charged with disclosing secret briefings to key allies, "At my lunch with Wolfowitz I empathised with the PM's commitment to regime change but the Foreign Office legal expert's advice was that the regime change would not alone justify going to war."

Well, Sir Christopher is with me now. You've had a fair amount of ordure of one kind or another flung at you over the last few days. Let's put to one side what the politicians have said, because perhaps that's predictable - you were disobliging about them and they were disobliging about you. What about those former and serving diplomats who say the problem is this: next time we're in a room with the Americans or whoever it's going to be, they're going to be thinking that guy is going to publish what I'm saying and the, the honesty of that inner conversation is going to be compromised fatally?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Two answers to that. First of all, from those who have read the whole book as opposed to some of the exerts in the newspapers, you will see that I am extremely careful to protect sources in Washington - people are not named. Where they are named, as you said in the introduction, Paul Wolfowitz, I was able to do that because the account of my conversation with Paul was leaked to a national newspaper in this country last year. So it was already all out there. So in that instance, as indeed in two other instances where I have used conversations, the contents had already been revealed.

ANDREW MARR: But diplomats, Foreign Office people and, as I say, civil servants, not about politicians, are very, very worried about this. They do feel that you may have been cleared to publish this but somehow you've crossed a line that makes their life harder afterwards.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well you, I mean you go to a very good point here - cleared to publish. I mean what actually is going on here. I write a book and make a judgement between what I think it is right to keep confidential and what it is right to bring out into the public gaze. The book goes into the Cabinet Office, it pops out a couple of weeks later and I'm told they wish to make no changes to the text, and then we publish.

ANDREW MARR: And if they'd told you "I'm really sorry but we don't think you should say this or that," would you have listened to them?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well it depends what they would have said, it depends what they would have focused on. I can't answer that hypothetically - I have to say that my instinct is publish and be damned, because I do think that there are areas of activity in foreign policy and in government where it is right to shine the light of day.

ANDREW MARR: Does that go for civil servants as well ..

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well, let me put this point. I think the terms of trade have changed enormously over the last six or seven years - actually in the lifetime of this government - and what we have seen since 1997, while the government is in power, there is a succession of ministers who have either just left office, in one case while still in office, publishing really quite extensive memoirs of what they did in government, which of course embraces exchanges with civil servants. Now I think, against the background of a kind of spew of books, by former ministers, special advisors, that the civil servants are now put in a position of disadvantage. I would like to see a new dispensation with clarity and, above all, consistency across the board on these issues.

ANDREW MARR: Because the special advisors, for instance Lance Price, always say that they keep the civil servants names out of their - and the civil servants - well they say - out of their memoirs, but of course when you are publishing you can't possibly keep the politicians out of yours because they're the core thing.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: No and I think, and I don't think that's a fair analogy really, because the politicians are elected officials, they're chosen by us in elections. I think it is legitimate and reasonable to be able to describe, in some detail, not in total detail, how they perform their job when they go abroad.

ANDREW MARR: Do you think New Labour just didn't like you?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: I have no idea, ask New Labour. I liked an awful lot of them, I have to say.

ANDREW MARR: Well yes - up to a point - Lord ...

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: I mean, yeah, well there's an awful lot of them, there's an awful lot of them - and I would say that for the most part there were very, very few that I disliked.

ANDREW MARR: But you were pretty rude about most of the key ones, weren't you? I mean Tony Blair - useless on the detail?


ANDREW MARR: ... pygmies

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: - you're going to say this is a cheap commercial plug and I'm trying to exploit this programme - but actually if you read the whole book -

ANDREW MARR: I have read the whole book.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well you've got - congratulations - a man of taste and discernment.

ANDREW MARR: I have read the whole book. It's pretty rude.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: What it shows - what it shows - well who am I to say, every reader's got to make his or her own judgement - it does show what complex characters and what complex problems politicians have to face. And above all I think Tony Blair comes out in all that complexity. So it is, I hope, not a cartoon portrait of him - nor of anybody else.

ANDREW MARR: The reason I asked you about what they thought of you was there were a couple of moments where you can really sense your anger in this book about the way that you were treated. There was a key dinner where the new Labour apparatchik, I think it's fair to say, tried to keep you out of the dinner with the Bushes. That kind of thing rankles, this is your revenge.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Yeah, no, that's completely unfair because the kind of people who are responsible for that situation were way down the food chain - I do not blame the Prime Minister, I do not blame the big beasts around him and I don't even mention whom I think was responsible. So the -


CHRISTOPHER MEYER: You're welcome if you'd like to. It's not worth it - it's too trivial. So I wouldn't transfer that to the senior members of the Downing Street party that day. That's not true.

ANDREW MARR: Let's turn to precisely what you do say about the key players. The accusation against Tony Blair is not that he was, in your view, dishonest or actually dishonourable in going to war on Iraq, but that he simply wasn't across the crucial details and that he did not have the leverage - he had much more leverage with George Bush than he perhaps understood and certainly was prepared to use.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well I think that, in a nutshell, is perfectly fair. I think that is the assessment in the book, although I make a very - I hope - rigorous attempt to separate what I thought at the time and what I think now two and a half years later.

ANDREW MARR: Of course.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Which is why you have a hindsight chapter towards the end. And it is, this is particularly, I think, a hindsight judgement. Sitting here now, looking back at those years, I think to myself by God we did have an awful lot of leverage and we could have used it more. And above all we could have used it to think about post Saddam.

ANDREW MARR: But even without hindsight, at the time there were moments where you hoped he would speak up and he did not speak up. Had he spoken up, had he used that leverage, what do you think we could have achieved?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well I come from a very particular position on this. I was in support of the war, I thought Saddam ought to be removed, I haven't changed my opinion, what is clear to me now - a lot of people disagree with me, I have already said this much - is not that we should not have gone to war but that we should have gone to war in better order. And better order would have meant not starting the campaign until the autumn of 2003.

ANDREW MARR: What would that have meant to what's happened in Iraq after the war and to that appalling sort of swirl of argument, bitterness and so on before the war?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well what happens -

ANDREW MARR: What would have been different?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well what could have been different was - I mean there are a number of things that could have been different and I set these out in the book - but one of the key things that would have been different - could have been different - was time properly to plan for what you were going to do after Saddam Hussein was deposed.

ANDREW MARR: But that means, if I may say so, that there are many people now dead in Iraq who would have been living had that been done properly. That many of the appalling things that have happened in Iraq, the atrocious numbers of civilian casualties, the British dead as well, that might have been avoidable, some of it, had the proper planning gone in beforehand.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well proper planning, obviously, would have made it a better situation.

ANDREW MARR: So this is not an abstract criticism, this is quite serious stuff.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well, of course it's not an abstract criticism but it is a criticism made from hindsight, because I can now see, and I hope I explain well in the book, that had we given ourselves another six months to get these things sorted out, we should have been, we should have been if we took that extra time properly, better equipped to handle Iraq after Saddam was removed, and to do a lot of other stuff in the diplomatic and political field which proved impossible on a spring timetable. That is the judgement.

ANDREW MARR: And we would have a better Iraq now if we'd been able to do that.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well we could have had a better - I mean I'm not going to sit here and say, you know, I guarantee certainty that it would have been all milk and honey if we had gone in the autumn instead of the spring. What I am saying is it would have given us more time to put in place the kind of mechanisms, allowances, arrangements that might have avoided all that bloodshed which we have had to suffer since then.

ANDREW MARR: You make the point in the book that the Prime Minister is in some modes a remarkable politician but the problem, you say, is that he doesn't go deep; he doesn't really understand the briefing; he doesn't go into the details.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: I wouldn't say he didn't understand the briefing, I mean he -

ANDREW MARR: Or he didn't read the briefing -

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: - I mean he is an extraordinarily impressive man and his ability to encapsulate what was at stake when the time came to, to deal with Saddam, and indeed after 9/11 -

ANDREW MARR: Do you think he was just a bit intimidated by George Bush ... ?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: No I never saw any evidence of that at all.

ANDREW MARR: Why did he fall silent then at those crucial moments?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well I don't know - you'll have to ask him, one of these days when you have him on your programme. But I think, it's not so much that he didn't grasp the details, he's a different kind of political animal from the two prime ministers I knew something about -Margaret Thatcher and, even more so, John Major - and both of those prime ministers were, apart from their other virtues, sticklers for detail. They worked for detail and if you didn't know the detail you got yourself into trouble with them. I never felt that Tony Blair was that kind of prime minister.

ANDREW MARR: And Jack - and below that level - Jack Straw, Geoff Hoon, John Prescott -frankly not up to it really.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well I didn't have, I mean I didn't have an awful lot to deal with them.

ANDREW MARR: That's the impression that you give.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well, read the book and draw your own conclusions.

ANDREW MARR: Well I'm putting to you the conclusions I've drawn.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: No I'm not going to para - I'm not going to paraphrase my own book but, again, these are not actually cartoon characterisations. I mean some of the quotes that have been pulled out and used incessantly.

ANDREW MARR: As you know, that's what the newspapers do.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well they do indeed and one attempts to write vividly in order to draw the reader's attention -

ANDREW MARR: And it's a very, very vivid book.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: - and you want to draw the reader's attention but actually underneath it all you're trying to make some very serious points about foreign policy, the importance of the diplomatic service, the importance of embassies and posts abroad, that you can't do everything from ...

ANDREW MARR: What do you say to those who have said this week that this is the kind of operation where X or Y would like to complain to the PCC, but you're the boss of the PCC, actually there is an obvious conflict of interests, even putting the money to one side, you should step down?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well I refute that entirely and I think I have the support of the industry on that. There's a very straightforward answer: if somebody wants to complain about the serialisation or whatever may be written in the newspapers, which is attributed to me or involves me in any way at all, there is a very clear procedure for dealing with this at the PCC. I would recluse [sic] myself, I would stand back from any procedure at the PCC, any adjudication - I've done this already, actually, two or three times.

ANDREW MARR: So there's no chance - you've got no plans whatever to stand down.

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Absolutely no plans whatsoever.

ANDREW MARR: And do you have any - I mean looking back at the serialisation, looking back at what's happened over the last week - looking back at some of the things former colleagues and friends have said about all of this - do you have any regrets at all?

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: Well of course I don't like disagreeing with former friends and colleagues and, but I think you just have to take it. I knew what I had written would not go down well with everybody, so you expect to be criticised, and you just have to ride it out.

As I say, a lot of people who have, who have criticised, particularly former members of the diplomatic and civil service, I'm not sure they entirely understand how things have changed in the last six or seven years. We can't go back, I don't think, to a 19th century view of all this. We're at the beginning of the 21st century and I really look forward to discussing these points with the public administration committee of the House of Commons

ANDREW MARR: We shall -

CHRISTOPHER MEYER: - who are going to have a hearing on this.

ANDREW MARR: All right. Sir Christopher Meyer, thank you very much indeed for joining us.


NB: this transcript was typed from a recording and not copied from an original script.

Because of the possibility of mis-hearing and the difficulty, in some cases, of identifying individual speakers, the BBC cannot vouch for its accuracy.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Climatological Alarmism: a new religion

I'm from Missouri: show me

Acknowledgements to the Spectator's Coffee House blog

Good news! Sea levels aren't rising dangerously

Thursday, 1st December 2011

By James Delingpole 

This week's Spectator cover star Nils-Axel Mörner brings some good news to a world otherwise mired in misery: sea levels are not rising dangerously – and haven't been for at least 300 years. To many readers this may come as a surprise. After all, are not rising sea levels – caused, we are given to understand, by melting glaciers and shrinking polar ice – one of the main planks of the IPCC's argument that we need to act now to 'combat climate change'?

But where the IPCC's sea level figures are based on computer 'projections', questionable measurements and arbitrary adjustments, Mörner's are based on extensive field observations. His most recent trip to Goa in India last month – just like his previous expeditions to Bangladesh and the Maldives – has only served to confirm his long-held view that reports of the world's imminent inundation have been greatly exaggerated for ends that have more to do with political activism than science.

Mörner's views have not endeared him to environmental campaigners or the IPCC establishment. A few years ago, when I mentioned his name in a public debate with George Monbiot, I vividly remember an audible hissing from sections of the audience as if I'd invoked the equivalent of Lord Voldemort.

The problem for Mörner's detractors is that, eccentric and outspoken Swedish count though he no doubt is, he also happens to be the world's pre-eminent expert on sea levels. Besides being responsible for dozens of peer-reviewed papers on the subject, he was also chairman of INQUA Commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution. This means that his findings can not easily be dismissed as those of a raving 'climate change denier'.

I have heard Mörner speak many times and his position is not nearly as controversial as it is sometimes made out to be by his detractors. His view is simple: 'If sea levels really are rising and islands like Tuvalu and the Maldives are in imminent danger of drowning, where is the physical evidence to support it?' So far there is none. It is those who claim otherwise who are the true 'deniers'.

You can read Nils-Axel Mörner's full cover story in this week's Spectator, on sale today.

Catastrophic anthropogenic global warming theory confuted

Acknowledgements to the web site of the Spectator.

Meet the man who has exposed the great climate change con trick

James Delingpole, 8 July 2009

James Delingpole talks to Professor Ian Plimer, the Australian geologist, whose new book shows that ‘anthropogenic global warming’ is a dangerous, ruinously expensive fiction, a ‘first-world luxury’ with no basis in scientific fact. Shame on the publishers who rejected the book

Imagine how wonderful the world would be if man-made global warming were just a figment of Al Gore’s imagination. No more ugly wind farms to darken our sunlit uplands. No more whopping electricity bills, artificially inflated by EU-imposed carbon taxes. No longer any need to treat each warm, sunny day as though it were some terrible harbinger of ecological doom. And definitely no need for the $7.4 trillion cap and trade (carbon-trading) bill — the largest tax in American history — which President Obama and his cohorts are so assiduously trying to impose on the US economy.

Imagine no more, for your fairy godmother is here. His name is Ian Plimer, Professor of Mining Geology at Adelaide University, and he has recently published the landmark book Heaven And Earth, which is going to change forever the way we think about climate change.

‘The hypothesis that human activity can create global warming is extraordinary because it is contrary to validated knowledge from solar physics, astronomy, history, archaeology and geology,’ says Plimer, and while his thesis is not new, you’re unlikely to have heard it expressed with quite such vigour, certitude or wide-ranging scientific authority. Where fellow sceptics like Bjorn Lomborg or Lord Lawson of Blaby are prepared cautiously to endorse the International Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) more modest predictions, Plimer will cede no ground whatsoever. Anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory, he argues, is the biggest, most dangerous and ruinously expensive con trick in history.

To find out why, let’s meet the good professor. He’s a tanned, rugged, white-haired sixtysomething — courteous and jolly but combative when he needs to be — glowing with the health of a man who spends half his life on field expeditions to Iran, Turkey and his beloved Outback. And he’s sitting in my garden drinking tea on exactly the kind of day the likes of the Guardian’s George Monbiot would probably like to ban. A lovely warm sunny one.

So go on then, Prof. What makes you sure that you’re right and all those scientists out there saying the opposite are wrong? ‘I’m a geologist. We geologists have always recognised that climate changes over time. Where we differ from a lot of people pushing AGW is in our understanding of scale. They’re only interested in the last 150 years. Our time frame is 4,567 million years. So what they’re doing is the equivalent of trying to extrapolate the plot of Casablanca from one tiny bit of the love scene. And you can’t. It doesn’t work.’

What Heaven And Earth sets out to do is restore a sense of scientific perspective to a debate which has been hijacked by ‘politicians, environmental activists and opportunists’. It points out, for example, that polar ice has been present on earth for less than 20 per cent of geological time; that extinctions of life are normal; that climate changes are cyclical and random; that the CO2 in the atmosphere — to which human activity contributes the tiniest fraction — is only 0.001 per cent of the total CO2 held in the oceans, surface rocks, air, soils and life; that CO2 is not a pollutant but a plant food; that the earth’s warmer periods — such as when the Romans grew grapes and citrus trees as far north as Hadrian’s Wall — were times of wealth and plenty.

All this is scientific fact — which is more than you can say for any of the computer models turning out doomsday scenarios about inexorably rising temperatures, sinking islands and collapsing ice shelves. Plimer doesn’t trust them because they seem to have little if any basis in observed reality.

‘I’m a natural scientist. I’m out there every day, buried up to my neck in sh**, collecting raw data. And that’s why I’m so sceptical of these models, which have nothing to do with science or empiricism but are about torturing the data till it finally confesses. None of them predicted this current period we’re in of global cooling. There is no problem with global warming. It stopped in 1998. The last two years of global cooling have erased nearly 30 years of temperature increase.’

Plimer’s uncompromising position has not made him popular. ‘They say I rape cows, eat babies, that I know nothing about anything. My favourite letter was the one that said: “Dear sir, drop dead”. I’ve also had a demo in Sydney outside one of my book launches, and I’ve had mothers coming up to me with two-year-old children in their arms saying: “Don’t you have any kind of morality? This child’s future is being destroyed.’’’ Plimer’s response to the last one is typically robust. ‘If you’re so concerned, why did you breed?’

This no-nonsense approach may owe something to the young Ian’s straitened Sydney upbringing. His father was crippled with MS, leaving his mother to raise three children on a schoolteacher’s wage. ‘We couldn’t afford a TV — not that TV even arrived in Australia till 1956. We’d use the same brown paper bag over and over again for our school lunches, always turn off the lights, not because of some moral imperative but out of sheer bloody necessity.’

One of the things that so irks him about modern environmentalism is that it is driven by people who are ‘too wealthy’. ‘When I try explaining “global warming” to people in Iran or Turkey they have no idea what I’m talking about. Their life is about getting through to the next day, finding their next meal. Eco-guilt is a first-world luxury. It’s the new religion for urban populations which have lost their faith in Christianity. The IPCC report is their Bible. Al Gore and Lord Stern are their prophets.’

Heaven And Earth is the offspring of a pop science book Plimer published in 2001 called A Short History of Planet Earth. It was based on ten years’ worth of broadcasts for ABC radio aimed mainly at people in rural areas. Though the book was a bestseller and won a Eureka prize, ABC refused to publish the follow-up; so did all the other major publishers he approached: ‘There’s a lot of fear out there. No one wants to go against the popular paradigm.’

Then someone put him in touch with a tiny publishing outfit in the middle of the bush — ‘husband, wife, three kids, so poor they didn’t even have curtains’ — and they said yes. Plimer couldn’t bring himself to accept an advance they clearly couldn’t afford. But then something remarkable happened. In just two days, the book sold out its 5,000 print run. Five further editions followed in swift succession. It has now sold 26,500 copies in Australia alone — with similarly exciting prospects in Britain and the US. There’s even an edition coming out in ultra-green Germany.

But surely Aussies of all people, with their bushfires and prolonged droughts, ought to be the last to buy into his message? ‘Ah, but the average punter is not a fool. I get sometimes as many as 1,000 letters and emails a day from people who feel helpless and disenfranchised and just bloody sick of all the nonsense they hear about global warming from metropolitan liberals who don’t even know where meat or milk comes from.’

Besides which, Australia’s economy is peculiarly vulnerable to the effects of climate change alarmism. ‘Though we have 40 per cent of the world’s uranium, we don’t have nuclear energy. We’re reliant mainly on bucketloads of cheap coal. Eighty per cent of our electricity is coal-generated and clustered around our coalfields are our aluminium producers. The very last thing the Australian economy needs is the cap and trade legislation being proposed by Kevin Rudd. If it gets passed, the country will go broke.’

Not for one second does Plimer believe it will get passed. As with its US equivalent the Waxman-Markey cap and trade bill, Kevin Rudd’s Emission Trading Scheme legislation narrowly squeaked its way through the House of Representatives. But again as in America, the real challenge lies with the upper house, the Senate. Thanks in good measure to the influence of Plimer and his book — ‘I have politicians ringing me all the time’ — the Senate looks likely to reject the bill. If it does so twice, then the Australian government will collapse, a ‘double dissolution’ will be forced and a general election called. ‘Australia is at a very interesting point in the climate change debate,’ says Plimer.

The potential repercussions outside Oz, of course, are even greater. Until this year, environmental legislation has enjoyed a pretty easy ride through the parliaments of the Anglosphere and the Eurosphere, with greener-than-thou politicians (from Dave ‘Windmill’ Cameron to Dave ‘climate change deniers are the flat-earthers of the 21st century’ Miliband) queuing up to impose ever more stringent carbon emissions targets and taxes on their hapless electorates.

In the days when most people felt rich enough to absorb these extra costs and guilty enough to think they probably deserved them, the politicians could get away with it. But the global economic meltdown has changed all that. As countless opinion surveys have shown, the poorer people feel, the lower down their list of priorities ecological righteousness sinks. ‘It’s one of the few good things to come out of this recession,’ says Plimer. ‘People are starting to ask themselves: “Can we really afford this green legislation?”’

Reading Plimer’s Heaven And Earth is at once an enlightening and terrifying experience. Enlightening because, after 500 pages of heavily annotated prose (the fruit of five years’ research), you are left in no doubt that man’s contribution to the thing they now call ‘climate change’ was, is and probably always will be negligible. Terrifying, because you cannot but be appalled by how much money has been wasted, how much unnecessary regulation drafted because of a ‘problem’ that doesn’t actually exist. (South Park, as so often, was probably the first to point this out in a memorable episode where Al Gore turns up to warn the school kids about a terrible beast, looking a bit like the Gruffalo, known as ManBearPig.)

Has it come in time to save the day, though? If there’s any justice, Heaven And Earth will do for the cause of climate change realism what Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth did for climate change alarmism. But as Plimer well knows, there is now a powerful and very extensive body of vested interests up against him: governments like President Obama’s, which intend to use ‘global warming’ as an excuse for greater taxation, regulation and protectionism; energy companies and investors who stand to make a fortune from scams like carbon trading; charitable bodies like Greenpeace which depend for their funding on public anxiety; environmental correspondents who need constantly to talk up the threat to justify their jobs.

Does he really believe his message will ever get through? Plimer smiles. ‘If you’d asked any scientist or doctor 30 years ago where stomach ulcers come from, they would all have given the same answer: obviously it comes from the acid brought on by too much stress. All of them apart from two scientists who were pilloried for their crazy, whacko theory that it was caused by a bacteria. In 2005 they won the Nobel prize. The “consensus” was wrong.’

Ian Plimer’s Heaven And Earth: Global Warming — the Missing Science is published by Quartet (£25).

Sunday, 11 December 2011

End racial discrimination against the English!

Here is a piece of pious hand-wringing of the kind with which regular readers of a certain section of the press will be only too familiar.

Establishment journalists such as its author imply that they will the ends of social justice for the English (and it is the English who suffer much more from the effects of mass immigration of ethnic aliens and racial discrimination in the aliens' favour, than the other indigenous peoples of the United Kingdom) but baulk at willing the most practicable means to those ends: voting for British National Party candidates in elections for public office. 

McKinstry and his ilk cannot even bring themselves to use the word English, to refer to the English, for fear of the very same accusation of 'racism' they rightly accuse the authorities of fearing.  Instead they use the non-specific (since it may also denote Eastern European immigrants, for example) term, white.

Acknowledgements to the web site of the Daily Express.


Dogma of political correctness is dangerously weakening Britain’s traditional concept of justice

Thursday, December 8, 2011

By Leo McKinstry

THE dogma of political correctness is dangerously weakening Britain’s traditional concept of justice.

Our ruling elite are so deluded by the ideology of cultural diversity that they have lost the ability to protect the innocent and punish the guilty.

That is the only conclusion to be drawn from the outrageous leniency shown by a court this week towards a gang of Somalian Muslim women who savagely beat up a white woman in Leicester city centre. In a brutal, unprovoked assault, the thugs knocked Rhea Page to the ground, then repeatedly kicked her in the head while calling her a “white bitch” and “white slag”.

Ms Page, who was so traumatised by the incident that she has lost her job as a carer for people with learning disabilities, later said: “I thought they were going to kill me.”

Incredibly, despite the ferocity of the attack, the judge gave the girls only suspended sentences, even though he could have jailed them for up to five years.

His bizarre decision came after the defence told him that the Muslim assailants had been drinking and were “not used to being drunk” because of their religion.

As a cause for mitigation, this is absurd. Why on earth should Muslims be treated any differently to other offenders, simply on the grounds of their faith?

If they are so pious, so respectful of Islamic rituals, why were they drinking in the first place? And shouldn’t their drunkenness in public, an offence in itself, have added to the seriousness of their crime rather than lessened it?

Just as troubling was the failure of the authorities to charge the gang with racially-aggravated assault. For nothing could be more racially abusive than their barbaric cry of “kill the white bitch”.

We can be pretty sure that if a Somalian Muslim girl had been kicked to the ground by a group of white brutes, the Crown Prosecution Service and the Police would have taken a tougher approach.

The disgraceful message of this episode is that Muslims can get drunk and maim almost with impunity because the state is so craven about their creed.

The case makes a mockery of the idea of equality before the law - one of the cornerstones of liberal democracy.

The reluctance to imprison Ms Page’s attackers is so indicative of the supine, guilt-ridden mindset of our modern ruling class, where cowardice is dressed up as cultural sensitivity and self-loathing masquerades as tolerance.

This mentality, which is tearing apart the moral bonds of our civilisation, can be seen all around us. A classic recent example was the police’s initial paralysing feebleness towards the rioters last August because of fears about accusations of racism.

The same is true of the hesitancy in tackling so-called “honour” attacks on women in Muslim communities.

Only last week, it was revealed that the total of these appalling incidents, some of them fatal, is approaching 3,000 a year.

In a similar vein, the police and social services have long been terrified of talking openly about the growing problem of Pakistani gangs preying on white girls [if you mean English then say English] in northern towns.

As Detective Inspector Alan Edwards, an expert in the field, has said, “Everyone’s been too scared to address the ethnicity factor.”

In the twisted world of our civic institutions, minorities are always seen as victims.

Even the worst behaviour of some in their communities is excused by references to poverty or racism or social exclusion.

That certainly applies to the Somalian community in Britain, who are constantly presented one of the most oppressed groups in the country.

But, in truth, the oppression can work the other way. Too many Somalians have become a burden on the British taxpayer, thanks to their welfare dependency.

Over 80 per cent of them, for instance, live in taxpayer-funded homes. Moreover Somalian gangs, most of them peddling drugs, have helped to create a climate of fear in parts of our cities through their enthusiasm for violence and contempt for the law.

As one Somalian youth from the notorious Woolwich Boys says, “We’ve come over here with one thing on our mind – money. We don’t care how we get it. The Government doesn’t stand a chance.”

Tremendous double standards are at work over race crime. Racial killings of whites are frequently downplayed or forgotten.

The name of Kriss Donald is almost unknown today, yet the circumstances of his death could hardly have been more horrific. [The worst racially motivated murder ever committed in Britain].

In March 2004, while walking through Glasgow, the 15-year-old schoolboy was kidnapped by a Pakistani gang, [driven around in a car for some hours,] dragged to open land, tortured, stabbed 13 times and set on fire while he was still alive.

Fortunately the gang was caught and convicted, but this monstrous crime provoked no great outpouring of moral anguish. [It was barely reported in England].

Peter Fahy, one of Britain’s leading chief constables, once said that political correctness means it is “harder to get the media interested” when the victims are “young white men”.

The British establishment is guilty of nothing less than reverse racism. Their members, from judges to politicians, think they are enlightened and compassionate. But in truth they are filled with prejudice.

For often they refuse to expect the same standards of civilised behaviour from certain minorities that they demand of the indigenous population.

Such a perverted outlook is the opposite of equality. In the name of anti-racism, they have ended up in the bizarre position of promoting discrimination.

That is no way to achieve the integration and cohesion that our society so badly needs.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

There exists a yet higher court

Our English Joan of Arc, Emma West, was yesterday unjustly refused bail by Croydon Magistrates Court.  Emma remains in prison and separated from her two young children (who have been 'taken into care'), allegedly for her own protection. 

But in reality this is only a hypocritical pretext.  It is a cynical ploy on the part of the scheming authorities.  It has been designed to disguise their oppressive attempt to break brave Emma's spirit, by unnecessarily imprisoning her against her will and separating her from her children over the Christmas period.

If, against her conscience, Emma had entered a plea of Guilty, as the magistrates had no doubt hoped, almost certainly, she would have been discharged and been re-united with her children for Christmas.  It is greatly to Emma's credit that, up to now, she has resisted the bullying and secret police tactics of the authorities.

Around-the-clock police protection in one's own home is unfortunately only vouchsafed to Islamist preachers of hate and other such enrichers of our vibrant multiracial utopia, such as certain homicides, rapists and paedophiles.  Emma, being English and her alleged crime being neither one of violence, nor incitement to violence, was regarded as ineligible for such favoured treatment.

It seems to me that this might well be a case of procedurally invalid incarceration, for which that famous old English remedy of a Writ of Habeas Corpus might usefully be applied.  An experienced lawyer would no doubt be a better judge of its appropriateness than I, but the terms wrongful arrest, malicious prosecution and false imprisonment certainly come to mind.

Emma is due to appear on 3 January before Croydon Crown Court, (read the Inquisition), on a politically-motivated charge of having committed a 'racially aggravated' public order offence, (read speaking heresy against the odious Establishment's anti-English, 'open door', immigration policy).

This patriotic young Englishwoman has clearly been singled out by the Establishment in order to be made an example of.  Remember, not only has the truth shamefully been made no defence in law, but speaking it in public is likely to lead to your arrest and imprisonment, if any ethnic alien claims that their feelings have been hurt by what you have said. 

It is not Emma West alone that is to stand trial in the new year.  The very right of free speech itself will be standing with her in the dock.  That right for which generations of our English forefathers worked, fought and died, progressively to increase, but which means relatively little to anyone not of European descent, is being surrendered by our decadent generation far more quickly than our ancestors were able to win it.

I rather admire King Alfred the Great's way of dealing with corrupt judges.  He had forty-four of them hanged in the course of a single year, so Andrew Horne informs us in his Miroir des Justices.  Of course, the judiciary was much smaller in those days.

As the festive season approaches, patriotic Englishmen and Englishwomen should spare a thought for the torment being inflicted on Emma and her children, by the hateful double standards of this bigoted and oppressive anti-English Establishment.

Christmas cards and letters of support should be sent to:

Emma West
C/o HMP Bronzefield
Woodthorpe Road
TW15 3JZ

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Athanasius against the world

Acknowledgements to the Touchstone web site for the following article about one Christian leader's lifelong struggle to win general acceptance for a particular ideology in the market-place of ideas.  In Athanasius' day organized religion was intimately connected to politics.  Come to think of it, our own time is not so very different in this respect.  Perhaps we may learn quite as much, if not more, from the good example of Athanasius' selfless devotion to his cause, as we may from the theological content of that cause itself.

Contra Mundum Redux

Mark Tooley on St. Athanasius

I am a United Methodist, but one of my greatest heroes in Christian history comes from the ancient church of Egypt. Athanasius lived 1,300 years before the founding of Methodism, but he was well known to Methodism’s founder. When the aged John Wesley​ wrote one of his final letters to William Wilberforce​, he likened that crusader against slavery to an “Athanasius contra mundum.”

“Athanasius against the world.” For most of his almost 50 years as bishop of Alexandria, he truly was arrayed against the full breadth of the Roman Empire, defiantly defending the Nicene doctrine of the Trinity against pagans and Arian heretics. Parker Williamson of The Presbyterian Layman several years ago wrote a wonderful book, Standing Firm, describing the issues between the orthodox and heterodox at the Council of Nicaea, where the full and eternal deity of Christ was debated and ultimately affirmed.

Arius, an often admirable church leader, denied that Christ was eternally co-existent with the Father. For him, Christ was a creature, not the Creator. As the Arian slogan went, “There was a time when he was not.” Not unfairly, Williamson likened some of Arius’s supporters to modern church leaders who advocate theological “diversity.”

In contrast, Athanasius, a young priest and protégé of the orthodox Bishop Alexander of Alexandria, stubbornly resisted Arius’s theological innovations. Of course, Athanasius, who would soon succeed his mentor to the bishopric, prevailed at the Council of Nicaea in 325, which insisted in its creed that Jesus of Nazareth​ was “God from God, light from light, true God from true God” and the one “through whom all things were made.” It was a crushing victory, the bishops closing their creed with the declaration that “those who say, there was when he was not, and, before being born he was not . . . these the Catholic Church anathematizes.”

But though he prevailed at the council, Athanasius still faced a half-century of theological combat, as the Arians attempted to gain by practice what they could not gain in a council.

The Force of a Single Mind

One of my favorite descriptions of Athanasius comes from Edward Gibbon​’s History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire​, which devoted several chapters to the Arian controversy. No fan of Christianity, Gibbon nonetheless lavished his admiration on the zealous bishop of Alexandria who nearly single-handedly championed theological orthodoxy when it seemed all of Christendom was succumbing to Arius’s alternative brand of religion. Gibbon’s introduction of the heroic prelate captures the remarkable magnetism and forcefulness of Athanasius:

"We have seldom an opportunity of observing, either in active or speculative life, what effect may be produced, or what obstacles may be surmounted, by the force of a single mind, when it is inflexibly applied to the pursuit of a single object. The immortal name of Athanasius will never be separated from the Catholic doctrine of the Trinity, to whose defence he consecrated every moment and every faculty of his being.

"Educated in the family of Alexander, he had vigorously opposed the early progress of the Arian heresy: he exercised the important functions of secretary under the aged prelate; and the fathers of the Nicene council beheld with surprise and respect, the rising virtues of the young deacon. In a time of public danger, the dull claims of age and of rank are sometimes superseded; and within five months after his return from Nice [Nicaea], the deacon Athanasius was seated on the archiepiscopal throne of Egypt. He filled that eminent station above forty-six years, and his long administration was spent in a perpetual combat against the powers of Arianism."

Athanasius was expelled from his throne five times and spent 20 years as an exile or a fugitive. Yet almost every province of the Roman empire was “successively witness to his merit, and his sufferings in the cause of the Homoousion [the doctrine of Christ’s co-substantiality with the Father], which he considered as the sole pleasure and business, as the duty, and as the glory, of his life.”

Although Gibbon thought Athanasius tainted by “fanaticism,” he acclaimed the archbishop of Alexandria as “patient of labour, jealous of fame, careless of safety.” And although not the greatest of orators or writers, Athanasius’s “unpremeditated style, either of speaking or writing, was clear, forcible, and persuasive.” For the Egyptian church leader, who interacted with every order of men from monk to emperor, the knowledge of human nature was his first and most important science. According to Gibbon, his political acumen and sense of timing were superb:

"The archbishop of Alexandria was capable of distinguishing how far he might boldly command, and where he must dexterously insinuate; how long he might contend with power, and when he must withdraw from persecution; and while he directed the thunders of the church against heresy and rebellion, he could assume, in the bosom of his own party, the flexible and indulgent temper of a prudent leader."

Gibbon chronicled how Athanasius contended with successive Roman emperors, who usually sided against the quarrelsome archbishop of Alexandria. The monarchs either supported Arianism or preferred political compromise over fidelity to the creed of Nicaea. That list of Roman princes against whom Athanasius contended ran from the great Constantine, through Constantine’s three “degenerate” sons, to Julian the Apostate, who recognized that orthodoxy and not Arianism represented the chief threat to his pagan revival, to Jovian, whose benign and brief reign offered Athanasius a brief respite, and finally to the cruel Valentinian and his brother Valens, an Arian who finally yielded to the more forceful Athanasius, who died peacefully while still occupying his archbishopric.

No less vexing were most of the empire’s bishops, almost none of whom, at least outside Athanasius’s own native Egypt, were willing to share in the persecutions the orthodox endured. Bishops in both East and West joined in synods and councils that denounced the archbishop of Egypt, hurled accusations against his theology and his character, and attempted to replace him, imprison him, and even kill him. They often had at their disposal the armies of the emperor, which occupied Egypt’s cathedrals and churches but never managed to apprehend the elusive bishop, who found refuge in the desert, in the monasteries, or in the homes of faithful supporters during his nearly 20 years of intermittent exile.

Whether from his bishop’s throne or from an obscure hiding place, Athanasius never compromised on the essentials or fell silent, his writings penetrating the far reaches of the empire even when the bishop himself was elusive. Although Arianism would endure beyond the life of Athanasius, its ultimate defeat within Christendom was achieved only because of his witness and exertions, operating under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, whose full deity, along with that of the Son and of the Father, was the unfailing guidepost to the ostracized but never despairing bishop.

Athanasius’s Crusade

Athanasius’s crusade for orthodox renewal gives us plenty of examples to follow for our own work within modern and no less troubled churches. As I review his life, thirteen attributes come to mind that are relevant to our own time:

1. Discernment and focus. He devoted himself entirely to the most important issue of his era, a struggle for which he was uniquely qualified. He applied his energies where they would have the most effect. Although there were other heresies and threats to Christendom beyond the Arian challenge, Athanasius knew that the subtle attack upon Christ’s identity was the most insidious and therefore demanded the whole force of his personality and life.

2. Courage. Deficient in neither moral nor physical courage, Athanasius on more than one occasion risked his physical life when imperial troops were literally ramming the doors of his Alexandrine cathedral, and when he threw himself before the Emperor Constantine​ in a direct confrontation. Yet threats to his life were, though real, only periodic. In more demand was his moral courage, upon which he drew for nearly five decades of spiritual battle. He realized that the gospel is inherently controversial, incurring the resistance of both temporal and spiritual powers.

3. Persistence. Athanasius was not persuaded to change course, even by often overwhelming failure. His long exiles and persecutions he perceived as only roadblocks, not insurmountable obstacles. He realized that his campaign for orthodoxy would consume decades, and its results perhaps would not be realizable within his lifetime. Yet he persevered.

4. Confidence. For Athanasius, doubt is not of faith. He was not intimidated or discouraged for long because he was certain of the final outcome. The identity and power of the godhead as realized in the Trinity would more than survive the assaults of bishops and emperors beholden to the fashions of Arianism.

5. Inflexibility in principle and pragmatism in technique. Athanasius never compromised on core doctrine. He shunned offers that would end persecution if only Arianism were allowed equal time. He worshipped a jealous God. But he was flexible in the techniques by which doctrine would be defended, and he was open to new terminology to describe and explain the doctrine. “Homoousion,” a new term to explain that Christ is of one substance with the Father, was not a directly scriptural word and initially caused him misgivings. But the accuracy of the explanation persuaded him to adopt it.

6. Demand for reforming the entire church. Athanasius could have avoided much turmoil and distress had he simply governed his own Egyptian see with his own brand of orthodoxy without insisting on its application throughout the Church universal. But he knew he was a bishop responsible to the whole Church, not just to Egypt, and that apostasy anywhere ultimately affects all members of the Body of Christ.

Athanasius’s Strategy

7. Widespread appeal. Athanasius spoke to the whole church, not just to bishops, councils, synods, or emperors. He delivered his message, in person or by writing, to every province of the empire and nearly every branch of the Church, to both laity and clergy, in doctrinally specific but still plainspoken language.

8. Dependence on laity. For much of Athanasius’s ecclesiastical career, most bishops and probably most clergy were hostile to his message of orthodoxy. He relied on and provided spiritual leadership to laity, including many lay monks, who instinctively responded to his affirmation of orthodoxy. Athanasius did not believe that because the shepherds had failed, that the flock must be abandoned.

9. Boldness in public. Athanasius had a flair for the dramatic. And he was self-consciously polarizing, knowing that polarization could lead to clarity. The Emperor Julian the Apostate​ called him the “enemy of the gods,” an insult Athanasius no doubt relished. He liked surprise, when well orchestrated. He knew that the Christian life could not be lived successfully in tepid tones and that a large and active following can only be excited by bold colors. The trumpet sound must be certain.

10. Defense of character. He always rebutted the numerous assaults upon his personal integrity, knowing that fairly or not, in the minds of his contemporaries the orthodox cause was inextricably bound up with the archbishop of Egypt. When standing before a synod summoned to examine a charge that he had exterminated an ecclesiastical rival, he dramatically produced the supposedly murdered priest at the trial. When a church tribunal failed to clear his name, he even more dramatically traveled incognito to Constantinople, throwing himself before the horse of the surprised emperor, stating his defense in the street, rudely but persuasively.

11. Reliance upon the Scriptures. Athanasius did not have 2,000 years of Christian tradition upon which to rely. The Council of Nicaea had not yet been cloaked with the luster and deference of history. He pointed to Scripture as the final and fully reliable guide for the Christian faith.

12. Recognition of the importance and weakness of resolutions. There was no greater champion of the Nicene Creed​ than Athanasius. But he knew the creed by itself was ineffectual against apostate church leadership. For the creed to have feet, it must have faithful bearers.

13. Total war. Athanasius knew that orthodoxy and heresy could not peacefully co-exist within the Church. One would triumph. He employed every honorable tool within his reach to ensure that the right side would prevail.

A Fourteenth Lesson

It should be recalled that Athanasius waged his empire-wide spiritual combat against heresy while still performing the routine duties of a bishop: preaching, administering the sacraments, visiting his people from the mouth of the Nile to Ethiopia, conversing with equal comfort with both royalty and desert hermits. As Gibbon wrote, “In the various turns of his prosperous and adverse fortune, he never lost the confidence of his friends, or the esteem of his enemies.” Perhaps there should be a fourteenth lesson from Athanasius: Devotion to the cause of theological orthodoxy should not distract us from the mundane details of local ministry.

Of course, few of us who contend for the faith within our troubled churches have the advantages of Athanasius’s education, position, talents, providential placement in history, and courage. Yet the God who gave him guidance is also available to us. The attributes of persistence and confidence that bolstered the Egyptian bishop are not outside our reach.

The results of our actions within the Church may be nearly as consequential for the church’s future as were Athanasius’s. Like him, we may not live to fully witness the fruits of our work. But we can know with confidence that God will employ our labors for renewal to the benefit of his people and to his glory.

Mark Tooley directs the United Methodist committee of the Institute on Religion and Democracy (www.ird-renew.org) in Washington, D.C.

Read more: http://www.touchstonemag.com/archives/article.php?id=14-03-018-v#ixzz1fWOK4xhE

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Nice and sleazy does it every time

Acknowledgements to the web site of the British Democracy Forum for the following carefully researched and excellent article by Mafeking.

The Solidarity 400

I note with great interest that according to its recently submitted accounts, the parasite's "trade union", despite persistent claims that this tiny organisation was "growing" and "gaining members" both before and since the general election, is claiming that at the end of 2010 it had exactly the same number of members, and in precisely the same proportions as it had at the end of 2009, viz:


Male members: 335

Male members in Northern Ireland: 5

Female members: 60

Female members in Northern Ireland: 0

Total: 400


Male members: 335

Male members in Northern Ireland: 5

Female members: 60

Female members in Northern Ireland: 0

Total: 400

This is most curious. Either nobody joined and nobody left during 2010, or those that left were replaced in exactly the same number and proportion by those who joined - a most remarkable feat of coincidence.

Most of us will recall the degree of "hype" attendant upon this "trade union" in BNP circles prior to the 2010 general election, when some very astonishing claims were made for it. One could have been forgiven for believing that it would soon be challenging the likes of Unison or Unite for supremacy.

Doubt is immediately cast upon this claim to 400 hundred members by the fact of the organisation's 2011 annual general meeting attracting an attendance comparable to that of a poorly attended dinner party - the actual number escapes me (less than fifteen, I believe).

Now those with a long and intact memory of the parasite will be aware that in the matter of figures of any kind, most remarkable feats of coincidence are in fact regular and normal occurrences, and not remarkable at all. They may always - and will be - explained away by some sleazy long-winded confection of tortured words designed to bamboozle and weary those who make legitimate inquiry.

I do not for one moment believe this proffered figure of 400 persons, almost all of them belonging to the BNP, paying a subscription to this "trade union" at the end of 2010, can be anything like the truth. The fortunes of this organisation are directly tied to those of the larger host organisation, and as we are very well aware, this was in a parlous condition as 2010 closed, and the parasite himself (along with his "trade union") had by then been the beneficiaries of months of negative internal and external publicity.

The most remarkable thing would be that so many as 200 persons continued to subscribe to this parasitical organism for reasons other than political or physical blindness.

I hear the parasite (or his friends on this forum) coming back at me with the cry that Silver and Company have signed off the accounts without demur, and that these accounts have been accepted by the Certification Officer. In this way were questions regarding the "trade union's" 2009 accounts parried, with nothing like an answer to the specific questions asked being given, that exercise in avoidance still existing on the website of the organisation in question.

It is a fact, of course, that neither the accountants employed nor the Certification Officer has access to the membership lists nor the details of the payments these individuals make. It is because of this, to place an example before you, that the Unite trade union was not taken to task for claiming more than half a million members more than it had - this was something that came to light only when an aggressive internal audit took place as the union's leaders questioned the disparity between income and the numbers of members it notionally had. As a consequence, Unite could no longer claim to be Britain's largest trade union.

I note also in the sparse accounts of "our" "nationalist trade union" other odd anomalies, which include surprising and unexplained (number of?) donations of £9477, which I leave it to others to examine.
Last edited by Mafeking; Today at 02:00 PM.