Thursday, May 04, 2017

A black contribution to British politics

How on earth did this dim bulb rise to a senior position in the British Labour party?  It's got to be one of the most contemptible examples of affirmative action at work

At last Labour’s critics have been silenced. Time and again the Tories have warned voters that, under Jeremy Corbyn, public spending would be out of control. This morning, though, all such scaremongering was put comprehensively to bed.

Diane Abbott, the shadow home secretary, was being interviewed on LBC radio about Labour’s pledge to recruit 10,000 new police officers. How much, asked presenter Nick Ferrari, would this cost?

“Well,” said Ms Abbott confidently. “If we recruit the 10,000 policemen and women over a four-year period, we believe it would be about £300,000.”

Mr Ferrari paused. “Three hundred thousand pounds?” he repeated. “For 10,000 police officers? How much are you paying them?”

The answer, according to Ms Abbott’s figures, would be £30 a year.

“Sorry,” replied Ms Abbott. “Ha ha. No. I mean… sorry.” She pondered. “They will cost…” she said. “They will, it will cost… Um… About…”...


Envy still thriving in Scotland

Scots are tremendous enviers, which is why Scots who want to get on have to leave Scotland, even if it is only for London.  And that envy translates to entrenched socialism

Nicola Sturgeon is set to resurrect her call to make top earners pay more income tax.

The SNP is expected to fight next month’s general election on a commitment to reintroduce a 50p top rate of tax — a policy the first minister backed before the last Westminster vote but abandoned for last year’s Scottish parliament poll.

The move reignited a row over tax policy, with Labour accusing Ms Sturgeon of performing a second U-turn over her stance in as many years. The Scottish Conservatives said Ms Sturgeon was “once again striving to tax Scots more” and claimed that raising taxes would harm the economy. The rate at present is 45p on any earnings over £150,000.


Belgian finance minister warns EU: change or die

Brexit has “shattered” the principle of ever closer union in the EU, according to the Belgian finance minister, who warned that the bloc had to transform itself to survive.

Johan Van Overtveldt said there was “clearly a problem” with the European Union, as he called for a quick, comprehensive trade deal with the UK and warned that punishing Britain would be counterproductive.

Mr Van Overtveldt said a “different” and “better” EU, that focused on key areas such as security, migration, jobs and trade instead of policing trivial policies would help to boost prosperity in the bloc and remove the discontent sweeping across the Continent.

“Sixty years after signing the Treaty of Rome, and 25 years after the Maastricht Treaty, the European Union is in trouble and is certainly in need of new inspiration and new directions. The EU cannot continue operating the way it does today,” he said at an event organised by the European Economics and Financial Centre in London.

He urged policymakers to take a different approach to integration and said the idea of an EU forged in crisis put forward by Jean Monnet - dubbed the father of Europe - was “dead”.

“This principle has now been shattered by the Brexit vote, and the fact that one of the largest and most prominent member states will be leaving the union means the so-called Monnet doctrine of continuous steps towards further European integration, most of the time through crisis, seems dead.

“One should not underestimate the psychological effect that the Brexit vote has had, not just in Britain but also in other European capitals,” he said.

Everything in my way of thinking argues to get a good deal for the British and not have as an ultimate objective to punish them
Johan Van Overtveldt
“Long time achievments of European integration such as free movement of people are being fundamentally called into question.”

He also called on the rest of the EU to be pragmatic about Brexit, adding that smaller states such as Belgium, Ireland and the Netherlands had much to lose from a so-called hard Brexit where the UK was forced to trade under World Trade Organisation rules.

“Everything in my way of thinking argues to get a good deal for the British and not have as an ultimate objective to punish them. This is democracy. We should respect that. We should strike a good deal and be reasonable people - on both sides - and then go on.”

Mr Van Overtveldt said securing a quick deal was also crucial.

“The sooner the better because the real danger of the Brexit process is that it will go on, and on, and on, and there will come a moment where that will start impacting expectations whether it be investments, producers or consumers which is of course bad for the economy overall.”

Asked to comment on reports that Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, believed Theresa May was “deluded” over Brexit talks, Mr Van Overtveldt suggested it was part of political game playing.

“It’s very common in Belgian politics to say you only have an agreement when you have an agreement on everything, so in that sense Theresa May sounded very much like a Belgian politician“ he said.

He said it would be “sad” if the only way the EU could remain attractive to its members was “by showing them you are able to punish the UK”.

He said making the EU single market work required better policing of “social security tourism” and enforcing a harder EU border. He said Brussels had to move away from meddling in all aspects of law while politicians had to stop blaming the EU for their domestic woes.

“If Europe focuses on how the pots in which olives are sold should be sized, then I think Europe is very wrong,” he said.

“If Europe starts to work in a clever way on migration and protecting the border I think that would be appreciated by the population."

He said the eurozone would need further integration if the single currency was to survive, as he urged policymakers to complete the monetary and banking union.

"The macroeconomic policies of the eurozone countries will need to be further integrated if we want the euro to survive successfully," he said.

“We need to focus on the things where Europe can give you an advantage and not lose ourselves in all kinds of details where quite often people know themselves what is best for them.”


Liberal Thought Police Getting Scarier

The totalitarian left is emboldened by its selective suppression of speech. Just as scary is the deluded thought process that inspires its Stalinism.

Recognizing its inability to compete in the marketplace of ideas, the left has been chipping away for years at the concept of free speech. You have to give leftists points for cleverness, not to mention persistence, because they don't openly advocate censoring conservative speech as such. They pretend to be protecting some greater good or preventing imminent harm to certain groups.

When they failed in talk radio, they resurrected the Fairness Doctrine, which is euphemistically disguised as a policy to ensure the presentation of all viewpoints but is actually a sinister ploy to dilute the power of conservative talk. They always have some excuse — and plausible deniability.

They protest conservative speakers or those easily demonized as conservatives on college campuses, arguing that conservative "hate speech" can lead to violence against certain groups. No one wants violence, so we must muzzle conservative political speech, right?

But it's patently absurd to contend that everyday conservative speech is "hate speech" and that it leads to violence. It is pernicious nonsense. What's worse is that these speech cops don't acknowledge their own hypocrisy in committing violence — the very harm they claim to be preventing — to prevent speech that allegedly could lead to violence. Let's just burn some buildings down and smash some skulls in to show just how adamant we are about preventing violence. I wish I were exaggerating.

But the thought control zealots are now coming up with even more bizarre rationalizations to curb competitive speech. In a recent New York Times op-ed, New York University provost Ulrich Baer argues: "The idea of freedom of speech does not mean a blanket permission to say anything anybody thinks. It means balancing the inherent value of a given view with the obligation to ensure that other members of a given community can participate in discourse as fully recognized members of that community. Free-speech protections — not only but especially in universities, which aim to educate students in how to belong to various communities — should not mean that someone's humanity, or their right to participate in political speech as political agents, can be freely attacked, demeaned or questioned."

You may consider that to be psychobabble. What would you expect from an academic who describes himself in the same piece as "a scholar of literature, history and politics"? But I digress.

Let's try to decipher what he's saying. To do so, we must understand that like so many leftists, Baer cannot avoid viewing these matters through the grid of identity politics; everything must be evaluated in terms of how it affects minorities or historically oppressed groups.

Even though one could define unfettered freedom of expression as "guaranteeing the robust debate from which the truth emerges," we shouldn't support it, Baer also says in the piece. Specifically, we shouldn't protect speech that insults whole groups in an effort to discredit and delegitimize them "as less worthy of participation in the public exchange of ideas." He seems to be saying that if you discredit groups of people with your speech, then you unlevel the playing field to the point that any speech these groups express will be less valuable and effective.

We must weigh the "inherent value" of ideas against the dangerous possibility that these ideas could discredit other groups and thereby effectively silence them, he says. Thus, a "pure model of free speech" presents a "clear and present" danger to our democracy.

So the republic is better-served if we allow certain ivory tower elites, with their worldly wisdom, to weigh the "inherent value" of speech to determine whether it should be protected. If it arguably demeans a certain group — and there are newly defined groups all the time in the left's world — it is not worthy of protection.

Thus, the liberal thought police can decree that because anything conservative firebrand Ann Coulter would say at Berkeley on immigration or other topics would diminish other groups, it should not be protected. She's a conservative, and conservative ideas don't have much inherent value to liberals and, in their distorted world, also discredit certain groups. Voila! Shut her down. The sophistry is astounding.

I urge you not to miss the most stunning aspect of Baer's specious analysis. The thrust of the left's message against conservatives across the board is that because of our toxic ideas, we should be discredited and delegitimized "as less worthy of participation in the public exchange of ideas."

Just as leftists support the commission of violence in the name of preventing speech that could arguably lead to it, they would muzzle us because through our speech, we would discredit and then effectively muzzle them. Insanity.

We don't want to muzzle liberals; we want to defeat them in the marketplace of ideas. We don't want to commit violence against them, but they often want to do so against us. Boy, how they project.

Let me ask you: In their world, who would decide whether certain speech has inherent value? The federal government, no doubt, provided Democrats are in control at the time. The true acid test of Baer's preposterous arguments would be to ask how liberals would feel if Republicans were allowed to make such decisions while in control of the federal government. How would they feel if a conservative had written this silly, scary op-ed?

It is precisely because we can't have certain self-appointed groups deciding what speech is worthy that we must vigorously protect "robust" political speech in this country. The Founding Fathers knew this, and everyone with common sense understands it. But the crazy modern left wants us to unlearn it — and leftists call us conservatives a danger to democracy.

Whatever you do, don't casually dismiss Baer's ideas as fringe. This is the way leftists think today — and they are the people teaching our university students, producing Hollywood movies and largely controlling the mainstream media. Wake up and be vigilant! And fight back!



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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