Tag Archive: Autonomous Mind

Irresponsible journalism

Autonomous Mind writes about what can only be termed irresponsible, misleading and thereby propagandist output by the media in regard to the demonstrations that recently took place in the Ukraine, reports that would have us believe said demonstrations were in protest at the failure of the Ukraine to join the European Union when in fact the real reason for the demonstrations was entirely different.

It is not just the example that Autonomous Mind highlights that leads one to believe our media is either incompetent or that there are other ‘forces’ which affect their output. To illustrate, take a look at this or this from FullFact; the former link being on the subject of whether the Scots face an additional £1,000 in taxation after independence; and the latter on the question of exactly how much smoking costs the NHS.

In both examples we find that the media has reproduced information from politicians and government sources with no apparent attempt at providing ‘the other side of the picture’. Just how are the electorate expected to understand the facts, or to form an opinion, when that which they receive is but propaganda?

If one works for a ‘news outlet’, does not one have a duty to present said ‘news’ in an impartial manner? Does that not demand that when presenting one view, that in fairness they have a duty to present an alternative view? When writing an article, do not journalists have an obligation to present a ’rounded’ report/article?

That journalists per se (there are notable exceptions: Booker) don’t, whether in the print, audio or visual media, can but lead one to surmise they are constrained by their employers. But that begs the question of where is journalistic principle; does not that principle require dissemination of not just news , but also different aspects/opinions of that news?

Of course, if journalists decided to uphold the principles of their profession, they would refuse to be constrained by conditions imposed by their employers – but then one has to ask whether just how many of them have a ‘common purpose’?

For ‘news’ to become that which it should – a means of ‘informing’ the public – is not just dependent on journalists rediscovering their principles. It also requires the public to realise that they are not being presented with ‘news’ – that they are being conditioned’. 

Utopia it may be, but what is needed is for the public to accept that they are being ‘conditioned’ (an ‘ask’ too far?) and once accepting that, to stop purchasing newspapers; to stop paying their tv licence fee and to watch tv  later on ‘catch-up’ via ‘iplayer’ (for which no licence fee is required) – thus denying those that rely on ‘conditioned’ revenue, their income – and an outlet for propaganda

Extrapolating this idea of ‘withdrawal’ of ‘conditioned behaviour’ further, it does not take that much imagination to realise that we, the people, have the ability to bring to a grinding halt the ability of the ‘state’ to function if we were so minded. We do not need to resort to ‘armed rebellion’ – much as I would like to see lamp posts ‘adorned’ – we can bring this situation of ‘state-slavery’ to a grinding halt by more peaceful means.

All the people need to do is ‘engage brain’.

Just an observation…….

 


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A sea of confusion

It would seem that the SS United Kingdom is adrift in a sea of confusion with, apparently, only clueless idiots in charge on the bridge.

Two posts, one by Richard North, the other by Autonomous Mind – together with an article in the Telegraph by Isabel Hardman – have appeared today. All three are ‘linked’ and worthy of further comment.

Richard North writes on the polling figures in respect of leaving the European Union, remarking on the fall of those who wish us to leave. Autonomous Mind, while acknowledging the small number of blogs attempting to educate the public, lays the blame for the falling numbers fairly and squarely at the door of Nigel Farage and his party. Isabel Hartman tackles a number of subjects in her article, from Cameron’s wish to ‘slim down the EU’, renegotiation, to the 2017 promised referendum.

Now either Isabel Hardman, Nigel Farage and all the supposed ‘eurosceptic’ Conservative MPs are totally clueless about ‘matters EU’, or they are deliberately choosing not to mention or discuss the intricacies of our membership of the EU – on both counts one has to ask: why? As Autonomous Mind asks: is it any wonder the numbers of those who would vote for ‘out’ are falling, when all they hear and read in the media is about renegotiation, a new deal and reclamation of powers?

Not one Conservative politician, nor Farage, nor come to that Hardman, will talk about what is the ‘nitty-gritty’; that powers cannot be reclaimed, that the 2017 referendum cannot and will not take place, that the EU never will be ‘slimmed down’; that treaty change and an IGC will be required; that it is not necessary to be a full member of the EU to trade with the EU,  thus retaining the statu quo that the business community is so hell-bent on. Where supposed eurosceptic Conservative MPs and Farage are concerned, all we get is: Ah, once we are out of the EU…. Witness Douglas Carswell (at 2:58) in response to a question about EU immigration – After we have left the EU…..

I have yet to hear one Conservative MP talk about all the diplomatic work that would be required were we to leave the EU, nor what type of free-trade agreement we should have – not one! This may be due a number of factors: the ‘payroll vote’ or fear of deselection, for example – or it may be due to the fact besides being afloat on a sea of confusion, there has been a deliberate attempt to create an accompanying fog of confusion and that, having taken Cameron’s plea on board, they are all in it together – including Farage and Ukip.

Readers will have noticed in Hartman’s piece that David Lidington, the Europe minister, has told Conservative colleagues that details of the renegotiation will only emerge after the European elections next year. What we are not told is how soon after the European elections we will be told, not that that is very important. All things considered, does it matter whether you get rebuffed now or later – and it should also be remembered that Barroso has already doomed to failure the repatriation meme.

The way the polls are heading means that if they continue on their present course Cameron faces coming into contact with something that will sink his ship in about 18 months time. Whether he can avoid his impending catastrophe is dependent on whether his radar is still working, which bearing in mind the defence cuts probably isn’t.

 

 


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STOR(ing) up a fortune

Ed Miliband vows in the Sun that his plans to shake up the Unions is a gamble but one he will take to give politics back to the people, at the same time promising to listen to the voice of British workers. Just how many times have we heard one of our politicians promising to listen to the people – and just how many times have they then continued to ignore the British people? Likewise his actions in regard to Labour’s links with the unions no more give politics back to the people than any decision I could make. At the end of his article Miliband has the nerve to criticise electricity companies that are, to quote him, ripping us off – a criticism that takes one’s breath away.

Autonomous Mind, in this post, links to a story in the Mail which in turn relies on articles written by Richard North here , here and here. As AM writes, to call this a scandal doesn’t come anywhere close to underlining the scale of this corrupt rip off or the extent of the carbon con that is being used by the government to enrich corporates at our expense. Of course, the question has to be asked under which political party’s watch did the STOR programme begin and who was Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change at that time? Yup, quite correct: the same man who now criticises electricity companies for ripping us off. Yet whose voice is missing from the condemnation that the STOR programme which was costing us £205million in 2010, is expected to rise to £945million by 2020?

This latest article by Miliband is nothing more than words – and as with most politicians, Miliband’s words are shown to be worth nothing. If Miliband really wants to give politics back to the people then he would immediately embrace, publicise and implement the 6 Demands.

When will politicians stop lying to us? When will politicians start acting like those they would have us believe they are: principled and honourable? When will the British people say enough is enough?

Just asking……………….

 


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Political prostitution

Both Richard North, EUReferendum, and Autonomous Mind have commented on the latest fiasco that has beset Ukip. Within the comments forum on Richard North’s article is one suggestion that Andreasen is but another career politician – yet another, I venture to suggest, who, to paraphrase Groucho Marx, has principles but also has others that can be wheeled out depending on which way the wind is blowing.

How this latest event will affect Ukip’s chances in the Eastleigh by-election is anyone’s guess, especially when considering Michael Deacon’s article in the Telegraph. If, as Deacon writes, politicians are generally held in contempt then it is logical to expect that the turnout will be fairly low. He hits the nail on the head when pointing out that it is not that people don’t want to vote, it is that they have no-one for whom to vote who commands their respect. It is also logical to assume, therefore, that at the 2010 General Election just over one third of the electorate felt the same way.

In talking to people I find that, while they consider today’s politicians to be liars and frauds, there is a universal view that the present system of democracy and politics has an inherent flaw. Exactly what that flaw is, they are unsure – until, through questioning, I find it is the remoteness of politicians; that they resent being told how they must behave, how they must speak; they resent the dictatorial attitude adopted by political parties on achieving government; they resent the change in the demographics of their country; and most of all they resent the fact they have no control over their politicians, save at election time – to name just a few of the opinions offered.

A recurring refrain among those to whom I talk is:  “There must be a better way

Cue a new movement to change things?


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That speech

“A liar begins with making falsehood appear like truth, and ends with making truth itself appear like falsehood.
William Shenstone

The only thing worse than a liar is a liar that’s also a hypocrite!
Tennessee Williams”

David Cameron’s speech began with a lie in that he stated he wanted to talk about the future of Europe when in fact he was talking about the future of our country. In speaking about the millions that lay dead across the world as a result of a battle for peace and liberty – and also mentioning that we should never forget their sacrifice – is it not odd that he supports a course of action which makes a mockery of the sacrifice paid to retain that liberty? I talk of his support for continued membership of the European Union providing he is able to repatriate certain powers, yet did not those who died fighting for this country fight because they were not prepared to relinquish one tiny aspect of their liberty to decide their own future?

As only a country can have people, I take exception to Cameron talking about the European Union and its peoples, the European Union is not a country therefore it has no people. I also take exception to him, or any other politician for that matter, talking about the defence of our sovereignty – the minute this country ceded the first power to decide something for itself and then action that decision regardless of what any other country thought, it no longer had sovereignty. It is disingenuous to couple the European Union with the words “prosperity, stability and being an anchor of freedom and democracy” when this country’s freedom to make its own decisions is no more and the European Union is most definitely not a democracy. It is indeed  hypocritical to maintain that Britain today is independent when it most assuredly is not, neither do we need to be reminded our country is open – one look at the immigration figures confirms that.

It is possible to lie by omission which Cameron does so well and doesn’t break what appears to be the habit of a lifetime when maintaining that membership of the European Union is necessary to have access to the Single Market. Richard North, EUReferendum; The Boiling Frog and Autonomous Mind have passed judgement on Cameron’s speech, with Richard North picking-up on what was probably Cameron’s biggest lie, namely that Norway has no say over EU legislation, a point also noted by The Boiling Frog. It is on the subject of lies that this entire question of the UK’s membership of the European Union hinges. Cameron is a liar, as has been demonstrated, so why should anyone trust anything he says now or in the future? As I write, I notice that Richard North has just posted on this matter of Cameron’s lies, making the point that The Great Deception continues.

Still on the subject of lies, one fears for the fairness of any referendum that is held and especially so when we can see that even now both sides of the debate are each telling lies. Where Cameron’s desire to renegotiate our membership of the European Union is concerned, I notice what appears at first sight to be conciliatory statements coming from political leaders and politicians of other Member States. As Autonomous Mind points out, if Cameron believes he can break-up the Acquis then he is being a tad delusional, despite what may be conciliatory statements and because of that, the fear must be that Cameron may return from his “negotiations” with changes that amount to no more than window-dressing and that – as in 1975 when Harold Wilson sold his country a pup – Cameron will repeat Wilson’s trick.

Of course, as in common with all liars Cameron is also devious so the questions which The Boiling Frog raises in his post are extremely pertinent. The really depressing factor in all this is that it matters not who inhabits No10, that inhabitant will do all that they can to skew the referendum to obtain an ‘In’ result, which means those of us fighting for ‘Out’ have the mother of all battles on our hands – and that last point is what one might term an even sad’m state of affairs.

 

 


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Changing opinions

In the comments section to a post by Autonomous Mind entitled “Snatching defeat from the jaws of a straightforward victory” – and in which he links to this post by Richard North, EUReferendum – one commenter writes:

“Personally, I don’t understand the levels of antipathy directed at UKIP on this blog, EU Referendum, boling [sic] frog, witterings from witney etc. EU Referendum seems to only want to leave the EU if some sort of perfect re-casting of our political and governmental system is enacted.”

When considering the current discussion about changing our relationship with the European Union – and I refer to Cameron’s wish to ‘renegotiate’ our terms of membership, coupled with the vacuous wordage that has poured forth from various people, such as Open Europe, it becomes obvious that very few brain cells, if any, have been used either collectively or individually. There are two sides to the discussion that is being held and they are, in effect, two sides of the same coin – namely the head: “exit” and the tail: “thereafter”.

The condemnation of antipathy directed at the four bloggers mentioned is, I would suggest, misplaced as their writing is but illustrating a deficit in all the discussion that is taking place in the media by journalists, business leaders and the political class. As the europhiles can be accused of relying on the “fear, uncertainty, doubt” meme – or Euro-FUD, a term bestowed by Richard North – should the UK exit the EU, thus misrepresenting and misleading the British public; so can the same accusation of misrepresenting and misleading be laid at the door of some in the Eurosceptic movement for not discussing that which they should – they need not be named as they know who they are.

On the subject of renegotiation, as has been shown here, what is it that Cameron thinks has changed, whereby he can break up the Acquis and cherry pick those pieces that he wants back? Those that seem to believe, as apparently does Tim Congdon, we can leave the EU and then negotiate a free trade agreement need, with the utmost respect, their heads examined.

Reverting to the fear factor, there are those that prophesy doom, that the sky will fall in, should we leave the EU. Once again as shown here unless there is the recasting so decried by that commentor, the sky may well fall in – at least the bits of metal flying around in the sky, that is. There really is no point in leaving one home for another unless you can be satisfied that the new home has been well constructed and has all the facilities that are needed – plus having a route-map of how to get there.

On that last point, namely a route-map, if Cameron is serious about wanting to redefine the UK’s relationship with the EU and bearing in mind any break-up of the Acquis is impossible, then there is only one course of action he can take – and that is to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and negotiate entry into EFTA/EEA.

Membership of EFTA then leads Europhiles to bleat about “fax democracy”, an argument which should be dead and buried after the Open Europe debacle. Unfortunately it is still being repeated and the latest example comes from one who is described asScotland’s most distinguished political commentator:

“The PM says he wants to remain in the single market but leave the EU increasingly behind, and this is a perfectly possible objective if he wants the UK to join Norway in the European Economic Area. Norway is in the single market but out of the EU,  But this means it is subject to the rules and regulations of the single market without having any say in shaping them.”

Perhaps when our MPs have procured their Idiots Guide to the EU, they could send one to Scotland’s distinguished political commentator.

Left to their own devices, if and when a referendum on EU membership does appear it is becoming obvious that which ever side wins will have done so by default, while utilising the black arts of censorship and propaganda. It beggars belief that both Europhiles and Eurosceptics treat this subject, one which will have the most profound effect on the future of this country, with such gay abandon. That the debate also appears to be being held among themselves, one could possibly add the words “and incestuous” twixt “gay” and “abandon”.

To turn to the “tail” side of the problem, the “thereafter”, this period of the operation must not only deal with resolving which laws we wish to retain and which we wish to reject; negotiating further trade agreements, etc, etc; it also needs to include a realignment of our own democracy, involving this idea, with a view to ensuring that never again can our political class – or anyone else – lead us down the road to hell.

 


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The cat is out of the bag

Deciding to visit my local hostelry for sunday lunch (and what a lunch!) I happened to pick up a copy of the Sunday Times in which there were two articles of interest, plus an editorial comment. On returning home to post on them, I find Autonomous Mind has “beaten me to the punch” and quotes from one of the articles.

While seconding the general thrust of AM’s piece, it is worth concentrating on the points that Steve Hilton makes where governance of our nation is concerned:

  • Bureaucracy masters the politicians;
  • Hilton was amazed to discover most government activity did not relate to measures “going through parliament”, but were matters of an administrative nature;
  • That 40% of government business related to implementation of EU legislation, 30% related to “random things”, with the remainder was actually related to implementation of government policy;
  • that Ministers have no time to read all the papers that they should, because;
  • that in one of his lectures, Hilton produced a one foot high stack of papers, which covered just four days, produced by government cabinet committees which were set up by David Cameron to deal with everyday government business;
  • In the editorial it was stated that Cameron is not a conviction politician but is one who is comfortable in power and perhaps too comfortable;
  • That not for the first time, Cameron finds himself one of those who are frustrated by the situation of being “in office” but not “in power”.

Is this any way to run a country? What is the point in electing people to guide our nation and manage it’s affairs when, leaving aside their lack of mental capability, those elected do not have the physical capability to spend the time required for the tasks that they should be undertaking? Come to that, what is the point electing people and paying them an inordinate amount of money when they are forced to spend nearly half their working day “rubber stamping” laws made elsewhere? What is the point, for a careerist politician, of being “in office” but not “in power”? Lets face it, admin managers are “two a penny” in commerce.

The accusation that Cameron is not a “conviction” politician; that he is comfortable in power and perhaps too comfortable; is one that can be laid at the door of every damn politician that the public currently elects. Digressing, as I usually do, just what the hell is a “conviction” politician – and if such an animal did exist, just what would be his/her purpose? Surely the only “conviction” any politician should have – and leaving aside those convictions of a judicial nature that most of our politicians should be subjected to – is one of serving those who elect them and enacting that which their people wish.

Such has become the system of democracy under which the political class force us to live that it is now shown to be ‘not fit for purpose’. It can no longer even be classed as “faux-democracy”, it having been emasculated beyond all understanding of the word “democracy”.

Ukip presents itself as an independence party, one wanting self-government – unfortunately the only self-government they want is the ability of Ukip to govern us without interference from Brussels and thus maintaining the grip that politicians have over us. Oh, for sure they include in their manifesto the ability of the electorate to call referendums but it is worth noting that they specify it would only be on certain matters, those matters, no doubt, being ones decided by them.

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose?

 

 


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2013
01/07

Category:
David's Musings

TAG:

COMMENTS:
Comments Closed

Congratulations…….

are due to Autonomous Mind as he has reached the ‘ripe old age’ of three today!


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On the wrong track – again

Every New Year we are regaled in the media with articles about the inexorable rise in rail fares and lo and behold Andrew Gimson, writing in the Guardian, does not disappoint. From this article:

“As if the tortuous ticketing arrangements weren’t enough, fares will on Wednesday rise by an average of 3.9%, or 4.2% for season tickets. This is not, however, something that can be blamed on the train companies. For year after year, ticket prices have risen by more than the rate of inflation because our politicians have decided that passengers should bear an increasing proportion of the cost of improving our railways.” (Emphasis mine)

Our politicians have decided squat-diddly – but those in Brussels most definitely have and the criticism that I made of Isabel Hardman yesterday also applies to Gimson. Once again we have a so-called journalist spreading misinformation because he is guilty of parroting that given to him by his contacts within the political class and because he has not carried out the necessary research.

To negate repeating myself, perhaps readers may care to refer to a post from August last year on this subject of rail fare increases, coupled with the principle of “user pays” and “polluter pays” – and do please follow the links contained therein. In this regard there is a a little-known principle of Community law known as the “occupied field”. What this means is that, once the EU has legislated in an area of its competence – as laid down by the treaties – even though the legislation may not be comprehensive, the area or “field” is deemed to be “occupied”. The significant of this is that member states are then specifically prohibited from making their own laws in that field, without the express permission of the European Commission. Transport, be that by air, rail, road or water is now an occupied field.

The United Kingdom was taken into what was then the Common Market, or EEC, on a lie and our continued membership is maintained on a lie. Christopher Booker, writing in the Mail, had an excellent article on that original deception. That we are still being lied to is illustrated by Booker’s comment:

“The real problem the British people have had with the ‘European project’, as its insiders call it, is that they have never really begun to understand its real nature, and what was always intended to be its ultimate goal. The chief reason for this is that our politicians have never properly explained it to us.”

Not only have our politicians never explained it properly to us, but neither have the media and while we are “blessed” with so-called journalists, of which Gimson and Hardman are examples. it falls on proper journalists like Christopher Booker and bloggers like Richard North, Autonomous Mind and the Boiling Frog (to name a few) to so do.

Afterthought: If readers would prefer a slightly more ‘tongue-in-cheek’ history of our relationship with the European Union, then perhaps this, from Caedmon’s Cat, may be of interest.


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The mind-control continues

Autonomous Mind posts on an article by Andrew Gilligan in the Telegraph. Who is Andrew Gilligan, I hear you ask. Come, come, you know Gilligan; the one who believes he is an investigative journalist.

As AM points out in his article, this one by Gilligan is but another attempt to implant in the British mind that leaving the European Union would leave us isolated and rudderless. I pointed out in an earlier post that where ‘matters EU’ are concerned, the Lib/Lab/Con rarely talk about that and that when they do it is invariably pro-EU, misleading or incorrect. AM picks up on this when he writes that truth is not an ally of Europhiles, but something to be concealed from the populace; that instead of matters of substance on the subject of EU membership what we receive are narratives of superfluous nonsense – and it is not just the Lib/LabCon that indulge in these practices – Ukip are just as guilty.

At the end of his post AM poses two questions that he believes should be posed to every europhile in the country, a suggestion which, needless to say, I second:

  • Why does it require the surrender of control of our country, identity, money and self determination to an unelected and unaccountable power overseas to realise any supposed benefits?
  • Why can’t benefits be achieved through cooperation and agreements, without rule from Brussels?

In addition to those two questions for politicians, there is perhaps one that can be asked of the public:

  • Who, but a nation of idiots would continually fund a venal, unprincipled and dishonourable group to lie to them when the people of that nation are perfectly capable of doing that to/among themselves – and also save themselves £millions?

 

 


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