Enough is Enough

Another week another media stooshie – hyped and sent viral by social media. Should we participate? Are we culpable?

The woman on Question Time – (in case you missed it) – spewed forth such a barrage of confused racist ramblings that everyone shuddered. Correction – autocorrect to my Metropolitan Elite bubble – some people cheered her forthright Salt of the Earth Post Liberation honesty.

She was – it turns out Sherri Bothwell – a former NATIONAL FRONT candidate in Leyton. There’s no way Mentorn didn’t know who she was.

It was like a sort of Racist Bingo card of clichés and misinformation (“flooded” – check – “sinking” – check – weird unverifiable anecdotes – check – our education and health services are collapsing under the strain of uncontrolled immigration – check).

Her answer to these imaginary stories that had been whispered in her ear was to “close the borders completely”. This was Trumpism come to land. This was your public broadcaster giving the National Front a platform.

“We should close the borders… completely. It’s enough! We are sinking! Enough is enough” she railed incoherently.

It was like decades of bigotry and Brexit delivered as a sort of emetic.

I tweeted at the time “Enough is indeed enough. This didn’t appear out of nowhere. We are tethered to a country where this has been normalised and apologised for. This is Dystopian England” – only to be schooled on Scottish exceptionalism and reminded of our own racism, bigotry and sectarianism. Of which of course we need to hold our hands up to. This is no nirvana. Racism exists in Scotland like a stain, no doubt. And our confused pride doesn’t stand up to much examination. Nor have we had the experience of genuine multiculturalism and immigration that England has. We have no way of knowing how we would have responded under different historical conditions and under different social experiences.

All this is true. But we are not talking about hypotheticals we are watching as an individual rants on live television – under the passive gaze of the host.

We are told she represents nothing – we cannot – we should not generalise from the particular. We cannot project from the unhinged individual to the wider nation. And this is right.

But how to respond to her post-fact analysis? “68 million people live in England and it’s going up”.

We need not to map her voice against a greater England – rich and diverse and tolerant and outward looking and anti-racist – but equally we need to map where this has come from. Because, just as she doesn’t represent the whole of England, she represents a significant part, and she doesn’t exist in isolation – floating free from the world in a bubble of her own bile.

She exists – and the context in which her views have been legitimised exists – because the right and the far right have exploited ruthlessly peoples fears and vulnerability about their precarious lives, their precarious health and their precarious homes.

But it’s more than that.

She has been cultivated and curated and groomed. She is not just the product of undermined services and vulnerable social structure. She is an ideological construct by dangerous people, and we can name them and observe them over time.

It is not enough to constantly say that people have “legitimate concerns” or to explain away peoples racism. Of course there are social conditions behind Brexit and behind fear.

But I am sick of making excuses for these people.

It is just lies and gibberish and it needs to be called out, not broadcast.

As the writer Moya Lothian-McLean explained, unpicking her tirade of nonsense:

“As previously outlined, there’s no great “flood” of migrants coming into the country. It’s not even a trickle. As for her claims about migrants being unable to speak English, in 2018, Sajid Javid said that the government estimated around 770,000 people in England were unable to speak the national language. These figures were taken from data collected by the 2011 census – conducted nine years ago. The non-English speakers are disproportionately older individuals; 59 per cent of non-English speakers arrived here after the age of 50.

Meanwhile, one in three people across the globe study English as a non-native language. And people from Poland, the country with the highest rates of migration to the UK, have a 62 per cent rate of proficiency in English.”

Migrants in the UK: An Overview – Migration Observatory

This briefing provides an overview of the number, population share, geographic distribution and nationalities of…

When people repeat myths that have been cultivated in the petri-dish of toxic Brexitland they need to be challenged not patted on the back.

Other questions hang like strange fruit. Should the BBC have aired this? Should we (mea culpa) have re-broadcast this?

Difficult questions.

Zelo Street reported: “As Sam Bright of Scram News has told, “So I used to run the social media accounts of a BBC political debate programme. This post blatantly violates BBC editorial guidelines”. Do go on. “If run properly, Question Time should inform people and (in theory) contribute to healthy, democratic debate. At the minute it’s built like an entertainment programme. It’s about clipping up extreme views and getting viral hits. The BBC need to rethink”.

When someone spouts heartfelt views, they are entitled to their opinion (however repellent you might find it). This is a bedrock of free speech.

But when someone is reproducing hate-speech the issue is different.

How should we respond to deliberate disinformation and ideological attacks?

This is not context-free. She is not a Citizen of Nowhere. She is the citizen of a particular state and a particular society at a particular time.

We can and should point this out – not to celebrate some pristine Scottish purity – but to stand in solidarity with people under attack – not by this woman – but by the government she probably helped elect.

He problem is not some random on BBCQT – the problem is that she is reflecting and channelling her governments words and stories about how Great England has been brought so low by “floodings” and “sinkings”.

Boris Johnson and Priti Patel and their coterie of racists are to blame. Farage and Fox and Widdecome are to blame. Decades of accommodation and equivocation are to blame, Gordon Brown and “that bloody woman” are to blame. But also the failure to create an alternative narrative is to blame. The abject failure to refute the story that immigrants are to blame for the failure of public services is to blame, and yes, the platforming of rank racists is to blame.

We can and should carve a different narrative in Scotland, not based on our own exceptionalism (and owning our own historic and contemporary failures) but based on a new and urgent sense of solidarity as Brexit Britain slides further into the mire of racism, populism and xenophobia.

Comments (43)

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  1. Dougie Blackwood says:

    All too true. All too many of our organs of Main Stream Media are cheerleaders for right wing xenophobia. Unfortunately the supposed balanced and moderating influence of the BBC has been corrupted by this same infection. Westminster holds the whip hand of charter renewal and the BBC know where their bread is buttered.

  2. Charles L. Gallagher says:

    Hi Mike,

    An obnoxious woman, as is Mentorn. But, hey Mike she is correct on one point, geologically England IS SINKING but this is not the way she meant.

    1. Wul says:

      This particular, racist, British mindset mirrors the behaviour of siblings in a family where there is not enough love to go round or child abuse.

      Rather than blame the ACTUAL person in charge ( the government of the day/parent) for the fact that the family (country) exists in a loveless, barren, starvation-ration household, the child hits out at siblings and those weaker than himself, becoming an obnoxious, irrational, self-destructive bully.

      The truth that the parent/government doesn’t care, or is incapable of caring, is too frightening and challenging to contemplate.

      We do love our paternalism in this country, as demonstrated by recent concerns about “The Poor Queen”, when the younger royals packed in the charade. We are an infantilised population, and there is a well funded, powerful structure keeping us that way.

      After the 2014 referendum, there were working-class Glaswegians writing the words” “OBEY YOUR QUEEN” on the paving stones on George Square, Glasgow. A Queen who, I am convinced, would have had nothing but disdain for those particular, northern “subjects”.

      1. Wul says:

        This wasn’t intended to be attached to your comment Charles. Sorry.

      2. EASYJOCK says:

        Well said Sir…..such obsequiousness towardsan unelected Head of State…a post held IN PERPETUITY….inside a given family is frankly nauseating.
        Such ‘ leaders’ are not required to have any particular qualities for the said post…not even down to education, moral compass, sectarian-bias etc etc etc but we are expected to be supplicant to them…..even though the family in question do not even accord the hoi polloi the rank of ” citizen” …preferring instead the soubriquet ‘ subjects”…..and all this, in the 21st century, beyond held as the natural order of things by morally bereft individuals , barely even able to spell such inane and nonsensical scribblings.
        If the brits are not a laughing stock, they sure as hell DESERVE to be !

  3. Bill says:

    Mike – you were right to call this out. This was shades of the Thirties. This woman is representative of the attitudes and approach of the Mosleyites. Will it only be a matter of time before we see the blackshirts marching and the books being burned? I am not sure. The activities of some of the pro-unionist faction will find much encouragement from that broadcast. It was also worrying that she got an enthusiastic response from some other audience members and no condemnation from any official source. As a chairperson of this programme Fiona Bruce leaves much to be desired and in fact seems to espouse some of those right wing values.

    1. Alasdair Macdonald says:

      Bill, It is not just of the Thirties. The Fifties saw race riots in Nottingham and Notting Hill and ‘No Blacks and Irish’ notices on rented accommodation were common. The 60s, despite the social reforms of the Wilson Government, saw an increase in anti-Irish sentiment. The 70s saw the London Dockers marching in support of Enoch Powell and Mr James Callaghan’s government putting racist legislation on the statute book. The 80s saw the xenophobia against ‘The Argies’ and the horrendous personal behaviour from the Fleet St media when BAME people marched across the Thames from Lewisham following the New Cross fire. Mrs Thatcher used the word ‘swamped’ In the 90s and 00s there were concerns about ‘eastern Europeans’ from Romania and Bulgaria. And, Bodger Broon spoke of “British jobs for British workers”.

      So a strong current of xenophobia, racism, English/British jingoistic exceptionalism has always existed in England and, despite the brave work done by many activists, within the Labour Party, too. Some of the recent comments of Ms Lisa Nandy and Ms Jess Phillips show this unself-aware colonialist mindset, although I am sure they would deny it with indignation were it to be said to them.

      PS We are not without these attitudes in some groups in Scotland and similar exist in Wales and Northern Ireland. In Scotland and NI, for some similar and some different reasons, I think more of the population are aware of the issue and more sympathetic to immigration, partly because we have had to deal with the sectarian issues. In Scotland, I think that the sectarian issue is hugely reduced as demonstrated by Professor Tom Devine, but, it is also my anecdotal feeling comparing the Anderston of my youth in Glasgow during the 1950s and 60s with the Glasgow we have today.

      1. Bill says:

        Alasdair, I agree wholeheartedly with your analysis. At least in the 60s 70s and 80s there were people to challenge the xenophobia. My feeling now is that the hatred and vitriol is accepted and no-one seems to care. The pro-union element to which I referred are those(few who have seen the inside of a church) who perceive themselves as defenders of the faith and followers of the murderous King William – they have also forgotten Glencoe.
        When I left Glasgow in 1966 iI found England to be a much more tolerant and relaxed society. Well that was in Cambridge and then Newcastle. Scotland had also mellowed on my return in 1978. My anecdotal evidence(from visiting friends) is that the England I knew then is long gone and a general rise in antipathy to all other than native English is extant. It may be too extreme to suggest that as in the Thirties fascism is on the rise in Europe and the virus has infected Britain

      2. Charles L. Gallagher says:

        Alasdair, I had a friend who lived in the North of England and when I visited we used to go along to the local Working Men’s Club where you were guaranteed a good cheap pint but the so-called ‘comedians’ were vile racists homing-in on whoever was the poor unfortunates of the day, yes racism was rife but they could never see or acknowledge it. It is still the same, they quickly forget about the Irish or Jamaican et al who nursed their sick parents/grandparents or the Poles that came to the Battle for Britain at the eleventh hour and turned the tide in the air battle.

  4. Mark Bevis says:

    Maybe it will take doing what that thing said, and actually shut the borders down for a month. We can use Coronavirus as an excuse. Once half the population has starved to death the remaining half might get the message, plus there’ll be plenty of room that the dead bigots wanted. Though of course, they’ll blame the immigrants for the empty food shelves and collapsed economy, even from their deathbeds.

    Sigh. Humans are weird. Even weirder is that the Tory party has managed to find black people that are racist against black people. For an evolved species some humans are downright stupid. Many are an insult to the biosphere. It’s one of those moments that you hope Guy McPherson is right. Hohum.

    Not that this is anything new. Am just reading about Stilicho, a Roman general in c400AD. The Senates in Rome and Constantinople and people didn’t want “barbarians” defending Rome, and certainly didn’t want them in the heirarchy as officers or generals – but the rich aristocracy didn’t want to provide soldiers conscripted off their estates to defend their wealth, because in doing so it would reduce their wealth. Nor would they serve as generals because, er, that’s actually quite dangerous. So the generals were put in an impossible position as assorted “barbarians” kept crossing into the empire fleeing greater catastrophe (the Huns) further east.

    It all sounds, quite familiar in a way. Replace the Huns with climate catastrophe and replace Roman Italy with England, and it pretty much matches. Apparently it didn’t end well for the Roman empire….

  5. Jack collatin says:

    It may be assumed that the producer of QT ensured that this sad woman was placed in the front row, centre, and that Madam Arched Eyebrow was aware that this was going to be another ‘Orange Fleece Man ‘ rant.
    Bruce never shies away from slapping down SNP MPs when they are making the case for independence, ably abetted by the Unionist panel members, every time.
    It was deliberate, obscene, and created the stooshie intended.
    To suggest that Scotland has an element of racism in our society is beyond doubt., but that it would have reached this level of fascist ‘normalcy’, if we had been ‘flooded’ with immigrants wot like the English experienced, is pure speculation, and rather disappointing.
    There is absolutely no evidence to support this rather alarming straw man.

    There is a cancer running though England now.
    It is getting very ominous indeed.

  6. Hamish100 says:

    Immigration from the EU to the UK was always lower than immigration from the Rest of the world. Simple fact, intentionally ignored.

    The Home Secretary and foreign secretary of the day like May , Patel, Johnson and that shower know this. They could have reduced RoW immigration but chose not too. Why? Scared of Farage and co or more likely the eu haters and racists within their own party. EU was an easier target.

    “Scots” tories will do whatever racist policies come from 10 Downing Street.

  7. Rob McClair says:

    Another point not yet discussed by anyone post those evil spewings by that quite disgusting woman is that she clearly considers that ‘ England’ is the more appropriate nom de plume for what some still laughingly call, the ” UNITED”(?)KINGDOM, by her reference to a ‘ 68million’ population……a phrase that comes all too easily to union supporters, and even at its kindest interpretation is an insult that scots and others in these islands endure on a daily basis.
    …..and yet they squeal when large and increasing numbers of the ’68million’ want out !
    Why DO we still pretend that in large measure, the various peoples in these islands …despite great economic and family ties…even LIKE each other ?…..and if you are in any doubt of the veracity of that statement, just log into the readers comments pages of the likes of the Telegraph, or the Daily Mail, in order to see just how much ‘ esteem’ the non-english numbers on these islands are held !
    “UNITED”(?)KINGDOM?…..where no country is to be allowed to leave without the approval of the representatives of the 85% majority ?
    Are they ‘ avin’ a larf ?

    1. Alan Reid says:

      Hi Rob,

      On the subject of “evil spewings”, I did note the sectarian language you flung in the direction of Jo during 20th February (see TV Times) – something she clearly found unjustified and offensive.
      Perhaps a little bit more self-awareness on this subject might also be appropriate?

      Kind regards

      1. Rob McClair says:

        If you consider a reference to the Orange Order as being a ‘ sectarian reference’ , then I could not agree more fully…..indeed, I fully DESPISE anyone who sees such organisation in any other light……three hundred years of history show that to be true…..and that DESPITE there being, some generations back, and to my family embarrassment today, members of my own family who back then indulged with such madness
        I make no apology whatsoever for THAT stance, and it’s time more of us…and the civic and legal authorities did precisely the same thing !
        I see that as YOU having the problem, not me !

        1. Alan Reid says:

          Hi Rob

          Well, that is very good to read – and, if possible, perhaps you can find time to clarify your original comments to Jo on the specific thread.
          In her post, I saw no evidence to suggest she was a member of the organisation you attributed to her!

          Kind regards

          1. Rob McClair says:

            IN truth, I could find no post from ” Jo” of any kind when I scrolled back….my only memory that fitted the use of the subject of sectarianism, was one in respect of the OO….hence my reply in that vein.
            Who/What is ” Jo’ ?….and why is he/she ‘ hiding’ comments from me?
            ( I jest…but I genuinely have neither record of memory of such interchange )
            Needless to say…It’s an Orange plot !

  8. SleepingDog says:

    I don’t watch Question Time regularly, but I gather it has long been something of a rant platform. From recent occasional viewings, I gather that audience members often only promote a view rather than ask a question, a practice which should be quickly closed down by the chair as out of order, unless an actual question is speedily offered.

    When I watched the clip, not having seen the original programme, and at least the woman asked a question (more than one; after the first question you should really be cut off unless a second is a genuine follow-up immediately following the first). However, she made an immediate challengeably-false assertion about the population of England being 68 million (Google says 56 million). Why not make audience members submit to real-time fact checks and abort on fail? Even the most shoddy online article might be expected to provide a hyperlink.

    Her descent in anecdote is a general problem with our level of political discourse that rarely rises to level of systems thinking. Incidentally, her questions about the cost of printing guides in various languages were unlikely to be answerable without a specialist with database access on the panel, therefore could be discounted as rhetorical and also out of order.

    The problem, in essence, is one of format. If you want to use discussion to enlighten, there are tried and tested ways. The most shiningly obvious is to train interlecutors in an updated form of the Socractic method, also known as elenchus. Rather than the willy-waving style of Westminster politics that Question Time is based upon, the Socratic method is more like midwifery, consensual drawing out and giving birth to ideas:

    You have to think in real time about what questions need to be asked. Obviously, in this case, the interviewer could have quickly asked if the woman had ever been a candidate for the National Front. Socrates was especially interested in probing people’s sense of their own authority.

  9. Daniel Raphael says:

    Balanced while pointed, never failing to make and keep clearly to the sharply defined point. Tweeted to as many as I could include.

  10. Josef Ó Luain says:

    The poverty and vacuity of debate inherent to Question Time has always been there – there never was a golden-age. Endless panels of predominantly Right leaning think-tankers, journalists, entrepreneurs and Tory politicians has ensured this state-of-affairs over the years. That said, for the sociologically-minded viewer, at least, the programme remains as an invaluable indicator of how “ordinary” people throughout these islands, view their society.

    That we have NF, O O and sundry other agenda-pushing activists spouting their views, largely unchallenged, on Question Time is to be expected – that’s what activists do when they’ve identified an “easy” and accommodating platform. The constant interruption of Johanna Cherry by F Bruce on the recent Question Time from Dundee was pretty much to be expected, as was the uninterrupted and sympathetic hearing given by Bruce to the quite ‘lost’ Tory MP flown North, no doubt, to reflect the political makeup of the ‘country’. Marginally better than Toby Young, I suppose, but not by much.

    Whether or not the BBC is irredeemably class-ridden, incompetent, unreliable and less than impartial, thus unworthy of its hallowed ranking within British culture and society, is a question that can only be decided and remedied by those with power over their remote-control buttons.

    1. EASYJOCK says:

      I certainly couldn’t have put it better…….but, the even bigger problem is….IT’S GETTING WORSE.
      Just have a look at the kind of ‘ review’ the Daily Express ( spit) gives to such contributions.
      ‘”UNITED” (?)KINGDOM ?……a genuine democracy?…….Where?……On Alpha Centauri perhaps ?

    2. SleepingDog says:

      @Josef Ó Luain when you wrote “at least, the programme remains as an invaluable indicator of how ‘ordinary’ people throughout these islands, view their society”
      I wondered how serious you were considering that the audience selection is not random, and neither is the time and opportunity given to the chosen few of the audience permitted to speak. As Michel-Rolph Trouillot would say, look to the silences, and the way that voices and sources are silenced at various stages before an opinion reaches the threshold of public awareness.

      My off-the-cuff impression of the audience-woman in the clip was that she was not only well-prepared but possibly well-trained as well. That population error was suspiciously helpful in immediately identifying her as a ‘nutter’ without having to do too much acting. I am sure that the political police have their agents amongst the National-Front-type organisations as well as infiltrating animal rights and anti-capitalist groups.

      1. JOCKEASY says:

        Again….I couldn’t agree more…..and it seems no time at all since yon ignorant, loud-mouthed, multiple-failed UKIP candidate appeared again as if by magic on the QT ‘ episode’ from Motherwell, …having PREVIOUSLY spouted HIS hate in earlier editions….AND BEEN ASKED BACK !
        “Brexit Britain”……the new name for what was ONCE called ‘ the UNITED kingdom”….before the ‘ methinks-they-doth-protest- too-much” English nationalists/fascists won in straight sense against the shell that once housed the Labour party ( RIP).

    3. Alan Reid says:

      Your comments did make me look again on the I-Player at the recent BBC Question Time from Dundee.

      There’s always “gripe and grievance” from nationalists that they don’t get a fair hearing on the BBC, and yet on the night, the redoubtable Joanna Cherry seemed perfectly able to make her case – and indeed appeared the dominant personality on the panel, closely followed by journalist Alex Massie.

      The core section of the programme was about Brexit – and the question of a second Scottish independence referendum – and it’s absolutely true that Fiona Bruce interrupted Ms Cherry nine times (by my count) – and Ian Murray only twice.
      It’s also true that the SNP MP got by far the biggest opportunity to speak on the topic –

      Joanna Cherry: 7 minutes
      Val McDermid: 2 minutes
      Alex Massie: 3 minutes
      Ian Murray: 3 minutes
      Tom Tugendhat: 3 minutes

      Through the efforts of Cherry – and independence supporting Ms McDermid – the separatist perspective seemed to be well aired.
      Furthermore, far from being a “lost Tory” – Tugendhat’s comments appeared well received by the Dundee audience.

      Rather than being an “unreliable and less than impartial” programme, Question Time seemed to be briskly managed by Ms Bruce, an obviously experienced broadcaster, who allowed all points of views to be expressed in a fair manner.

      Although not “scientific”, I believe I’ve fairly described the debate, and perhaps people need to start testing these nationalist assertions of BBC bias a little more rigorously than they have in the past. On the basis of Question Time, they do seem somewhat bogus.

      Kind regards

      1. Rob McClair says:

        ……..and your last sentence gives the game away since…….even if you WERE right about the scrupulous fairness of Auntie…and I DEFINITELY BELIEVE YOU ARE NOT….it surely should be taken as precisely as we would ANY conclusion, from a sample of ONE.

        1. Alan Reid says:

          Thanks Rob

          …….. and in the case of BBC Question Time that’s one simple example of evidence collation more than I’ve ever seen from my nationalist friends.
          And you will note that I tried to be fair, and confirmed Fiona Bruce interrupted Ms Cherry more often than Ian Murray – although gave her longer to state the separatist position.

          You should be happy that, admittedly on the basis of limited sampling, BBC Question Time appeared fair and balanced.

          Kind regards

          1. Rob McClair says:

            Sorry itsa brief riposte, but perhaps you could talk us through…or direct us to….the UN report highlighting how well Ireland ( the nearest comparable free nation to Scotland) has done on a whole swathe of fronts , and on a publication produced annually by an organisation with no dog in the fight re the independence issue here.
            Have YOU found any BBC ” news” educating their audience….be they scots or other brits.

        2. Alan Reid says:

          Hi Rob,

          The UN HD 2019 report? I think we did cover that in a previous post.
          The report shows that both Ireland and Scotland (UK) are doing well, relative to other countries, based on the criteria set – with Ireland 3rd in the table.

          I know the 2019 report was big news in the McClair household – and you were disappointed over the apparent lack of coverage on the BBC.
          The United Nations HD report has been published for 30 years. Here’s a thought: rather than a conspiracy of silence, is it simply possible the current report wasn’t greatly newsworthy to a British audience?

          In comparison with 2017, the UK was down 0.002 points in the overall index, and dropped from 14th to 15th position.

          Understandably, a marginal drop of 0.002 points in an annual UN report is hardly front-page (or even middle page) news.
          However, as the report placed Britain above Japan and France in its league table, I agree – perhaps it should have been?

          But if you really must castigate the BBC for alleged bias, surely you can find something a bit more convincing?

          1. Rob McClair says:

            Good grief…I ask you if you can show me where the Beeb ( or any other of the british media) informed the public ( as per their own charter) about the UN tabulation….and you come up with what?…….MORE TAT……..vascillating, utter tat !
            ……Is that REALLY as good as you can do?
            Far less from never seeing these ( I think) significant stats concerning a neighbour in these very islands ( regardless of any one persons view re the scottish position)…and a continuing UK decline in the ‘ rankings’ …..I put it to you that the overwhelmingly pro-union MSM are doing every last one of you as disservice.
            It would seem however that some are much too dim to see that !

        3. Alan Reid says:

          Hmmm …… I can certainly see a lot of “attitude” in your reply, Rob, but I can’t discern much in the way of substance.
          When you have a more credible example of BBC bias, I’d appreciate if you can share it with me.

          Very kind regards

  11. florian albert says:

    ‘Boris Johnson and Priti Patel and their coterie of racists’

    In a short time as PM, Johnson has given the three top jobs in government to a Jewish MP and to three others from an ethnic minority background. (He has also

    established the Tories as Scotland’s second party.)

    The number of immigrant coming in is ‘not even a trickle.’

    The Sunday Times today gives figures for London’s population; 2998,000 out of 8,174,000 were born outwith the UK.

    Mike Small, like so many on the left, use words like racist so casually that they devalue them. They fail to notice that they are failing to take the vast majority of

    people along with them.

    1. EasyJock says:

      Gawd,,, we see lotsa daft, ignorant posts on these threads, from a whole swathe of nutjobs at times and then, just when we think that someday, SOME sanity will return, up you pop….fresh from that medically-diagnosed Alzheimers reverse, …or was it a heavy head first fall down several flights of stairs…..maybe you’ve just had a stroke then,…Eh?
      The symptoms are there for all to see, with the spewing of that utter pap about yon de pfeffel fcukwit…..that ammoral, proven multiple liar of long standing…and the more than a tad amusing claim that the man who has been sacked several times for lying…EVEN OTHER JOURNALISTS THOUGHT HE WAS BEYOND THE PALE…then showing how he despised the people of Liverpool, talked of ‘ picanninnies with watermelon smiles’, refererred to ethnic dress as ‘ letter boxes’, and edited a publication that described us ourselves as ” verminous people”……and we COULD go on and on and on, were it not obvious that we’re replying to the drivel and foam from the pen of a halfwit.
      Look under your bed on that locked, secure ward they keep you on…maybe one of the OTHER inmates/patients will find you in a rare moment of lucidity, and report you to the lady with the medication trolley , …for a double-dose on her next rounds.
      What a fcukwit….even for a four-year old !

    2. SleepingDog says:

      @florian albert, you have a point, so how would you describe the in-group of in-groups that coalesce around Johnson and Patel?

      1. florian albert says:

        I would describe Johnson and Patel – though I know little of the latter – as political opportunists; very successful opportunists as the voting last December demonstrated.

    3. I really dint use them casually and its a amazing thing when I can publish (as others have) calling the Prime Minister a racist liar in the full knowledge that no action will or can be taken.

      1. florian albert says:

        Johnson won’t sue you because it would give YOU publicity. You know that as well as I know that.

        Do you really believe that the level of immigration into the UK is ‘less than a trickle’ ?

    4. Wul says:

      “The Sunday Times today gives figures for London’s population; 2998,000 out of 8,174,000 were born outwith the UK.”

      That’s interesting florian a. So, 2.9m out of 8.1m, (35% ) Londoners were born abroad? If this “influx” is a London “problem”, why are the reactions to it forming policy for the whole UK?

      It is as if London now IS the UK and the rest of us get dragged along in whichever direction appeases Londoners, either in the suburbs or The City.

      1. florian albert says:

        London is the most extreme case in the UK. Its influence affects much of the rest of the country. People in other parts of England have been attracted to the Great Wen for centuries. Now they have to compete with non-UK citizens who are often (understandably) willing to work for less money and endure bad housing; think Grenville Towers.
        Also, people across England see what is happening in London as the future for their city/town/region. Many, many of them do not like it.

        However, I do agree that the political class think that London is England or even that London is the UK.

        1. Rob McClair says:

          It’s also worth remembering that great numbers of indiginous ‘ Londoners’ are leaving the capital, some to live abroad, but mostly to live in other parts of the UK where they percieve a better quality of life and/ or life/ work balance….so the ‘incomer rate’ gets skewed.
          The availability of AirBNB and short term lets etc also sucks people in , who ultimately move on/out …..but London isn’t actually any ‘ worse’ than many other cities , both inside and outside Europe………..but it’s true that even the english population increasingly think of London as a kind of ‘ City State’ that often has little to do with….or be part of…the rest of the nation.

        2. Arboreal Agenda says:

          The figures are not difficult to come by:

          ‘Around 36% of people living in the UK who were born abroad live in the capital city. Similarly, around 38% of people living in London were born outside the UK, compared with 16% for the UK as a whole.

          After London, the English regions with the highest proportions of their population born abroad were the West Midlands (13.8%), the South East (13.4%), the East (12.7%), and the East Midlands (12.7%). In each of these regions the proportion of people born abroad was lower than for England as a whole (15.4%), which is skewed by London.

          Of all the nations and regions of the UK, the North East had the lowest proportion of its population born abroad (5.8%), followed by Wales (6.1%), Northern Ireland (7.9%), and Scotland (8.8%).’


          In no way can this be described as less than a trickle even if one disregards London (though there is little logic in doing that) and Scotland clearly has a noticeably lower percentage overall.

          When it comes to bigotry it is worth noting that in 2016 research showed that Ayrshire was worst for online hate speech though overall what the stats shows is that with the exception of certain pockets across the UK (Northamptonshire of all places), such bigotry is fairly evenly distributed.


          I would not advise anyone to try and gauge the tenor of a country by looking at below the line comments in the Daily Express and Mail, unless of course they were looking for what they wanted to find.

          1. Rob McClair says:

            So….we IMAGINE the views of typical readers taking the time to write such hate against other britons in these ‘ british’ newspapers then , do we?
            Such folks would rightly be pilloried for expressing such opinions re blacks, muslims etc etc….but , while no one is claiming these are the views of a majority in England, they are clearly a loud and significant voice….and yet, the media is perfectly happy to hang the ‘ antienglish’ tag as being the norm for supporters of self determination….and all the while failing to point to any statement…ever…by any SNP official ( I know of none now, or in the past) whose expressed views on our neighbours would be seen by the man on the Clapham Omnibus as being other than fair comment…..an area where I put it to you, ( and as I deplore it on ALL sides) we are more sinned against than sinning.

  12. Iain Scott says:

    Often it’s interesting to look at who owns a company like Mentorn and indeed their accounts. This wiki link is an interesting start.
    This is a big business and therefore the more online traffic the more they view their output as a success.
    The problem lies with the commissioning body the BBC . They feed the beast.

  13. Amanda says:

    Does it matter who is a member of what as long as they speak the truth ? Noticed how they try to dog anyone i they go agaisnt the narrative of the world leaders and their puppets, Especially when they fear them

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