Friday, 29 April 2016

When we say they are only animals we open the ways to the Gas Chambers ..Hitler was neither a Vegetarain nor a Socialist

"Oh, Sonichka, I had such a pang recently ... The soldier ... belaboured the poor [buffaloes] so savagely with the butt end of his whip ... the beasts, which were utterly exhausted, stood perfectly still. The one that was bleeding had an expression on its black face and in its soft black eyes like that of a weeping child ... I stood in front of the team: the beast looked at me, the tears welled from my own eyes ... The suffering of a dearly beloved brother could hardly have moved me more profoundly, than I was moved in my impotence in the face of this mute agony." (Rosa Luxemburg, "Letters from Prison," translated from the German by Eden and Cedar Paul, Berlin, 1923 )

"In relation to [animals], all people are Nazis; for the animals, it is an eternal Treblinka." Isaac Bashevis Singer

Yesterday I wa told that all you Greenies should be ashamed Hitler was a vegetarain and a Socialist so I decided to produce something for the blog First the Socialist bit ….. So I decide do write something. I noticed that a few weeks ago somone on Neath Voice for Everyone had made the claim that Htler was a Socialist. So I have to comment. I even remember a certain member of Swansea SWP making the Vegetarian claim..........

"Socialism" is a controverted term.  It's one that some people run toward and others run away from.  So how do you decide whether the NSDAP/ Nazi party was "socialist" when there's no universally agreed upon definition.  One reasonable course, it seems to me, is to ask what governments that call themselves socialist look like, and then ask whether Hitlerian Germany looked anything like them.
The two main wings of the socialist movement come out of the split among socialists occasioned by the Russian Revolution.  The pro-Bolsheviks and the anti-Bolsheviks alike continued to call themselves "socialists", although the former also called themselves "communists."  (It was the USSR, not the USCR, after all).
Ruling parties from the Bolshevik tendency defined the sine qua non of socialism as state control of the forces of production, typically guided through state command, although in some cases (Hungary and Yugoslavia, for example) markets also played a role.
Socialist parties that broke with the Bolsheviks continued in some cases to proclaim their commitment to collective ownership or control of the forces of production for decades.  (See, for example, the British Labour Party's Clause IV, which wasn't voted down until the 1990s).  In practice, though, all of these parties made their peace with capitalism, settling for a regulated version of capitalism with extensive social welfare provision and close identification with the labor movement.
Now, what about Hitler's Germany? You certainly did not find state ownership of the forces of production.  Those remained in private hands (including foreign corporations like Ford, GM, and IBM).  Far from close identification with the labor movement, you found harsh repression of labor unions.  Social welfare provision did not advance markedly beyond that which dated back to Bismarckian Germany.  And while there was state regulation of capitalism, it was the kind of wartime mobilization of capital that is found in all sorts of regimes.  Too, one must remember that the first inmates of the first concentration camp, Dachau, were members of Germany's leading socialist parties, the SPD and the KPD.
In sum, there is no good reason to regard the NSDAP's use of the terms"socialist" or "worker's party", or the anti-capitalist tone of some of the party's pronouncements, as anything other than cynically propagandistic.  If it doesn't walk like a duck, quack like a duck, swim like a duck, or fly like a duck, then calling it a duck doesn't make it a duck.
Before we see the evidence that Hitler wasn't a vegetarian, it's important to look at where the argument that he was comes from, because it's an argument that's rarely made honestly. People who insist that Hitler was a vegetarian usually just "heard it" somewhere, and immediately assumed it was true. And yet, if you tell them that Hitler wasn't actually a vegetarian, these same people who instantly believed in Hitler's vegetarianism without question, will suddenly demand all manner of proof that he was not.
Why do they require such a high standard of evidence that Hitler was not a vegetarian, when they require no evidence at all that he was?  Apparently many people want to believe that Hitler was a vegetarian. Perhaps they're threatened by vegetarianism because it implies that they're doing something wrong.  But armed with the (mistaken) idea that the infamous Hitler himself was a veggie, that allows them to easily dismiss the whole concept of vegetarianism in one fell swoop.  "Hitler was a vegetarian, therefore vegetarianism itself must be flawed!"  Of course, that's a patently retarded argument.  But the point is, many people are eager to believe it, which is why they require no proof at all when they hear that Hitler was a veggie, and then suddenly demand reams of supporting evidence when someone suggests he wasn't.
If you think I'm exaggerating about the importance that anti-veggies place on the idea that Hitler was a vegetarian, look at this letter that someone wrote to award-winning author John Robbins, who has written several books promoting a meatless way of eating:
You people who say that we would all be more peaceful if we ate a vegetarian diet always seem to forget that Adolph Hitler was a vegetarian. That pretty well destroys your belief system, doesn't it?  (
My god, take a look at that: It pretty well destroys your belief system?!  That's how important Hitler's alleged vegetarianism is to many non-veggies.  Their belief is that if Hitler were a vegetarian, then vegetarianism itself is completely invalidated.  Is it possible to be any more ridiculous than this?
Thinking people will realize that it wouldn't matter even if Hitler had been a vegetarian.  That is, it would not "pretty well destroy [our] belief system".  Bad people occasionally make good choices.  This shouldn't be so difficult to understand.  Had Hitler actually chosen to be a vegetarian, that would simply have been one of the better choices he made.  If Hitler were fond of chess, that wouldn't invalidate chess.  In fact, one of the best players in the history of the game, Bobby Fischer, was a raving anti-Semite, but nobody stops playing chess because of that.
And what if Hitler had been fond of chess?  Would non-chess players taunt those who do play the game about that?  No, because people who don't play chess generally don't give a flying flip about whether other people play it or not.  They don't feel threatened by someone being a chess-player.  But once the issue is vegetarianism, it's a different story.  This should lay bare the motivations of those who champion the idea that Hitler didn't eat meat.
And of course, even if Hitler had been vegetarian, likely every single other mass-murderer in history was not.  If you were keeping score, that would be, Vegetarian Mass Murderers: 1, and then Non-Vegetarian Mass Murderers: 100's.
And now we come to a curious battle: Hitler vs. Benjamin Franklin.  Franklin was a vegetarian only for about a year, from the ages of 16 to 17 (, but of course most people don't know that.  If a meat-eater is (mistakenly) told that Franklin was a vegetarian, they'll often demand to know whether he ever ate meat, and if it's admitted that he did, well, then that's their "Aha!" moment.  They'll triumphantly exclaim, "So Franklin wasn't really a vegetarian, was he?!"  I'm sad to have witnessed numerous conversations that actually went that way.
That's important because the same people have much softer criteria for Hitler. Franklin could have eaten meat once every four years and his vegetarianism would be dismissed as a fraud, but if Hitler ever ate a potato, then bang! He's vegetarian. This is important because there are numerous accounts of Hitler eating meat throughout his life, and incredibly this is just brushed off by those who say Hitler was a veggie. But the standard for Franklin is different: Franklin has to avoid meat 100% of the time, for his entire life, from the day he's born to the day he dies, unwaveingly, otherwise he's not really considered a vegetarian at all. It's like if Hitler ever had a meatless meal then he's a vegetarian while if Franklin ate fish once after sixty years meat-free then he's not.
(To be clear, as we said earlier, Franklin was a vegetarian only for about a year, but most people don't know that. I'm talking about how people have different standards for Hitler's vegetarianism vs. anyone else's.)
So what constitutes being a vegetarian? Most would agree that it's a deliberate decision to not eat meat, for whatever reason. By that criteria Franklin was a vegetarian for a about a year, and for the rest of the time he wasn't. For Hitler, there's no compelling evidence that he stuck with a real veggie diet for any appreciable length of time. Multiple sources document him as eating meat throughout the 1930's. (See below.) Shortly before his death (in 1941 and 1942) he claimed to be vegetarian, and "Hitler was a vegetarian!" proponents have latched all over this. Because, Hitler wouldn't ever lie, or even exaggerate, would he? I mean, this is Hitler we're talking about, and who on Earth would ever question Hitler's commitment to the truth? After all, if you can't trust Hitler, then whom can you trust? If you were going to pick one person in the whole world whose word you would definitely accept unquestioningly, that person would be Hitler, right? I mean, surely we can believe that every word that ever came out of Hitler's mouth can safely be believed to be the absolute truth without any doubt at all, right?
Rynn Berry adds, "To be sure, Hitler professed to be a vegetarian..., but the primary sources that I have cited in my book show that while he paid lip service to vegetarianism, he was not consistent in his practice of the diet." (source)
The fact is, many people use the word "vegetarian" to describe diets that aren't vegetarian at all, and Hitler's case is no exception. An article from May 30, 1937, 'At Home With The Fuhrer' says, "It is well known that Hitler is a vegetarian and does not drink or smoke. His lunch and dinner consist, therefore, for the most part of soup, eggs, vegetables and mineral water, although he occasionally relishes a slice of ham and relieves the tediousness of his diet with such delicacies as caviar ..." (source) So when Hitler says he's a vegetarian, he's almost certainly using it in this context: He's a "vegetarian" who eats meat. That's like someone saying, "I'm not a bank-robber! I only do it once a month."
Still, for those who insist that we take Hitler at his word literally about his claiming to be a vegetarian in the 1940's, we have this gem from The Hitler Book, about Hitler's daily routine in 1944: "After midnight [Eva] would direct that there should be another light snack of turtle soup, sandwiches, and sausages." (source)
If Hitler was really a vegetarian, he was a sausage-eating one.
Below are some articles which give the details about Hitler's true diet.
book, Hitler: The Life and Death of Adolph Hitler, Payne says that Hitler's "vegetarianism" was a "legend" and a "fiction" invented by Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi Minister of Propaganda. According to Payne:
"Hitler's asceticism played an important part in the image he projected over Germany. According to the widely believed legend, he neither smoked nor drank, nor did he eat meat or have anything to do with women. Only the first was true. He drank beer and diluted wine frequently, had a special fondness for Bavarian sausages and kept a mistress, Eva Braun… His asceticism was fiction invented by Goebbels to emphasize his total dedication, his self-control, the distance that separated him from other men. By this outward show of asceticism, he could claim that he was dedicated to the service of his people. In fact he was remarkably self-indulgent and possessed none of the instincts of the ascetic.
While it is true that Hitler's doctors put him on a vegetarian diet to cure him of flatulence and a chronic stomach disorder, his biographers such as Albert Speer, Robert Payne, John Toland, et al, have attested to his liking for ham sausages and other cured meats. Even Spencer says that Hitler was a vegetarian from only 1931 on: "It would be true to say that up to 1931, he preferred a vegetarian diet, but on some occasions would deviate from it." He committed suicide in the bunker when he was 56 in 1945; that would have given him 14 years as a vegetarian, but we have the testimony to the contrary of the woman chef who was his personal cook in Hamburg during the late 1930s - Dione Lucas. In her "Gourmet Cooking School Cookbook," she records that his favorite dish - the one that he customarily requested - was stuffed squab (pigeon). "I do not mean to spoil your appetite for stuffed squab, but you might be interested to know that it was a great favorite with Mr. Hitler, who dined in the hotel often."
In their efforts to discredit animal rights activists, supporters of animal research periodically proclaim to the media that Adolf Hitler was a vegetarian and that the Nazis did not engage in animal research.
The implication is that these 'revelations' suggest a sinister similarity between Nazis and animal rights 'zealots' and serve as a warning that animal advocates have an anti-human agenda.
But the real story about Hitler and the Nazis is miles from the myth. One legitimate response to such claims is that it doesn't matter whether Hitler was a vegetarian; as Peter Singer said, "The fact that Hitler had a nose doesn't mean we're going to cut our noses off."
Biographical material about Hitler suggests a contradictoriness in reports about his diet. He is often described as a vegetarian who nevertheless had a special fondness for sausages and caviar, and sometimes ham. One of his biographers, Robert Payne ("The Life and Death of Adolf Hitler) took exception to the view of Hitler as an ascetic, and said it was deliberately fostered by the Nazis to project an image of Hitler as pure and dedicated.
Wrote Payne: "Hitler's asceticism played an important part in the image he projected over Germany. According to the widely believed legend, he neither smoked nor drank, nor did he have anything to do with women.
"Only the first was true. He drank beer and diluted wine frequently, had a special fondness for Bavarian sausages, and kept a mistress... "His asceticism was a fiction invented by (Nazi propagandist Joseph) Goebbels to emphasize his total dedication, his self-control, the distance that separated him from other men..." Biographer John Toland ("Adolf Hitler"), describes Hitler's early student diet as consisting of "milk, sausage, and bread."
Moreover, Hitler never promoted vegetarianism as a public policy for either health or moral reasons. His lack of policies and public support for vegetarianism is significant in a leader who rigorously enforced other health policies, such as anti-smoking and anti-pollution legislation, and pregnancy and birthing measures for women.
The rumor that the Nazis passed an anti-vivisection law is also filled with contradictions. No such law was passed, although the Nazis reported that such a law existed. The Nazis allegedly passed an anti-vivisection bill in 1933.
"Lancet," the prestigious British medical journal, reviewed the Nazis' law in 1934 and warned anti-vivisectionists not to celebrate because the Nazis' law was no different, in effect, from the British law that had been passed in 1876, which restricted some animal research, but hardly eliminated it. An enormous amount of research on animals continued to be carried out by Nazi doctors.
The evidence of Nazi experiments on animals is overwhelming. In "The Dark Face of Science," author John Vyvyan summed it up correctly:
"The experiments made on prisoners were many and diverse, but they had one thing in common: all were in continuation of or complementary to, experiments on animals. "In every instance, this antecedent scientific literature is mentioned in the evidence, and at Buchenvald and Auschwitz concentration camps, human and animal experiments were carried out simultaneously as parts of a single programme."
It is important that the facts be known so that the myths about Hitler and the Nazis cannot be used against the animal rights and vegetarian movements.
Animal rights advocates should not let these false claims appear in the media unchallenged. The record must be set straight. Many have claimed that the slaughter house influenced the development of the concentration camps.

Several writers, including Jewish Nobel Prize laureate Isaac Bashevis Singer, and animal rights groups have drawn a comparison between the treatment of animals and the Holocaust. The comparison is regarded as controversial, and has been criticized by organizations that campaign against antisemitism, including the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

A character in one of Singer's stories described the treatment of animals by humans as "an eternal Treblinka". Similarly, the eponymous character in J. M. Coetzee's Elizabeth Costello compared the Nazis' treatment of Jews to methods used by the meat industry to herd and slaughter cattle.The comparison began immediately after the end of World War II, when Jewish writers recounted the lack of resistance by European Jewish victims of the Holocaust, who were led to their death as "sheep to slaughter" . When we say they are only animals we open the ways to the Gas Chambers

"It made me realise the slogan we'd been using, 'Never Again', was not really about what others shouldn't do to us."  

Thursday, 28 April 2016

The Ant, the Spider and the Honey Bee..reflections on the BBC Welsh Leader`s debate.

I watched the BBC Welsh Leaders debate last night. There were only two parties who were different.. One was the Green party the other UKIP. Both parties spoke outside the debate. The Greens spoke from a wider perspective, Alice Hooker-Stroud raised the bigger issues, she asked why could there not be alternative options for ownership of Port Talbot Steel, why could there not be ownership by the workers, why could we not nationalise? She asked wider questions about Health, about Education about how we live.

I saw growing incomprehension about these issues on the faces of the other 5. I was reminded of Francis Bacon's comments about the ant. The ant collects minute bits of information but never puts them together as a collective whole until told to do so.. Kirsty Williams must take the prize for being the busiest Ant with a vast range of leaves and berries but she never took them anywhere apart from saying she was sorry for what the Lib Dems had done and that she understood that they had learnt a great deal.

I should be fair to Leanne wood she was Francis Bacon's spider she constructed a a coherent policy that was interesting. Yet she did not take it further she merely constructed a rational arrangement of Plaids' policies and weaved together a garment that combined the outlook of the culturalists with a thin layer of the Ecosocialists. But it was a sadly thin gruel.

UKIP and Nathan Gill appals me, but I am afraid that will not stop people voting for them. Everything was down to the matter of immigration, of the EU. Gill was able to touch all the buttons to maximise his support. He was able to link all of the emotional points to achieve his ends. I loathe him, his simplicity and the hatred and fear he uses. But that will not be enough to stop UKIP bursting in to the Assembly. It will be only in the glare of publicity that they will be seen for what they are..but that will be after the election next Thursday.

Francis Bacon's last character was the Honey Bee it collects information, it analyses and it transforms what it discovers. Alice Hooker Stoud gave us the meta model of what must be done. Activists like Emma Knight a formidable campaigner in the Melin area of Neath and Lisa Rapado the Constituency Candidate for Neath will provide an active campaigning presence on the ground that will lead to a longer lasting, radical community based force. There may well be enough luck, opportunity and savvy knowledge to break through next Thursday. Alice raised the Regional vote Vote issue in her opening statement it may well be enough. However had we begun the Regional Vote argument earlier I would be more confident. Lisa Rapado`s leaflet begins “I'm Lisa, a working class, Welsh speaking mum of two. As a trade unionist and a seasoned campaigner campaigner I care deeply about the disadvantaged.” We have enough middle class ecosocialists like myself we need to spread out in the communities. We have won the Social media element of the debate, raised the big issues but we must work in the communities of Wales now.

Long after UKIP has been sent to the dustbin of History we will be here. The important future is to combine a meta critique of Society with a community campaigning base. But that base must be part of a clear Welsh Identity and an Independent Welsh Green party with the aim of an independent Wales.

Growth only from below.............

herefore the ancients said that after Adam had eaten the apple, the tree of paradise withered. Your life needs the dark. But if you know that it is evil, you can no longer accept it and you suffer anguish and you do not know why. Nor can you accept it as evil, else your good will reject you. Nor can you deny it since you know good and evil. Because of this the knowledge of good and evil was an insurmountable curse.
But if you return to primal chaos and if you feel and recognize that which hangs stretched between the two unbearable poles of fire, you will notice that you can no longer separate good and evil conclusively, neither through feeling nor through knowledge, but that you can discern the direction of growth only from below to above. You thus forget the distinction between good and evil, and you no longer know it as long as your tree grows from below to above. But as soon as growth stops, what was united in growth falls apart and once more you recognize good and evil.
Jung, C. G., The Red Book

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Support Alice Hooker-Stroud in tonights debate

[WGPC] Twitter support for TV debate this evening

As you know Alice is taking part in the BBC Leader's debate this 
evening. It would be great it you could show your support on Twitter 
with #BBCWalesDebate and tag @alicegreenparty. The debate will be 
broadcast at 8.30pm on BBC Wales and streamed here:

Twitter analysis is used by the political pundits so we really want to 
have as many positive tweets as possible between 9pm and 10pm. Here are 
some suggested tweets (but writing your own would be preferable): -

- Great #BBCWalesDebate performance from @AliceGreenParty showing that 
Greens have fair & environmental solutions for Wales. #ShakeUpTheSenedd

- #BBCWalesDebate shows that @AliceGreenParty @WalesGreenParty will 
provide strongest voice for social justice and environment in Wales

- Excellent #BBCWalesDebate from @AliceGreenParty proving breadth of 
Green policies for sustainable future for Wales #ShakeUpTheSenedd

Many thanks for your support!

How the Regional Vote Works..........

Urban Legends and the Migration debate

I was leafleting the Melin yesterday and I was talking to a fellow activist. They told me that a certain activist in another party told them that they were a supporter of Isis because they supported immigration and wanted to help the refugees who come here. In December I wrote this piece and I saw how thety were connected. What do you think?
There is a very unpleasant urban legend doing the rounds. I have heard it twice now. The story goes like this. A friend of someone notices that a man of Middle Eastern origin has dropped his wallet and not noticed it. The person who notices it points it out to him and is thanked. The man says “ I never thought anybody who is not of my people would bother to help someone like me. I will give you some advice “Do not go to the ST David's shopping centre over Christmas. The story is unpleasant it creates fear, It feeds into the collective paranoia. It may even be a story that someone has told you. Urban legends create a political climate, a moral climate that pushes us to one one end or another. It feeds into fear, anxiety and the tabloid press. It feeds into the arms of the of the military industrial complex and it causes distrust . It lays the foundation for blaming the other, the migrant
I have long had an interest in Urban legends and observed how they work. Please read the following observations and think about the issues I have raised. The term "urban legend," as used by folklorists, has appeared in print since at least 1968.Jan Harold Brunvand, professor of English at the University of Utah, introduced the term to the general public in a series of popular books published beginning in 1981. Brunvand used his collection of legends, The Vanishing Hitchhiker: American Urban Legends & Their Meanings(1981) to make two points: first, that legends and folklore do not occur exclusively in so-called primitive or traditional societies, and second, that one could learn much about urban and modern culture by studying such tales.
Many urban legends are framed as complete stories with plot and characters. The compelling appeal of a typical urban legend is its elements of mystery, horror, fear or humour. Often they serve as cautionary tales. Some urban legends are morality tales that depict someone, usually a child, acting in a disagreeable manner, only to wind up in trouble, hurt, or dead
As Jan Brunvand pointed out antecedent legends including some of the motifs, themes and symbolism of these urtexts can readily be identified. Cases in which there is some likelihood that at least a partial inspiration has been located include "The Death Car," by traced by Richar Dorson to Michigan,in the United States; "the Solid Cement Cadillac" and the possible origin of "The Hook" in the 1946 series of Lovers' Lane murders inTexarkana, jn Texas, The urban legend that Coca-Cola developed the drink Fanta to sell in Nazi Germany without public backlash originated as the actual tale of German Max Keith, who invented the drink and ran Coca-Cola's operations in Germany during World War II.
The teller of an urban legend may claim it happened to a friend, which serves to personalize, authenticate and enhance the power of the narrative.[10]Many urban legends depict horrific crimes, contaminated foods or other situations which would affect many people. Anyone believing such stories might feel compelled to warn loved ones. Not seldom, news organizations, school officials and even police departments have issued warnings concerning the latest threat. In the "Lights Out" rumour, street gang members would drive without headlights until a compassionate motorist responded with the traditional flashing of headlights, whereupon a new gang member would be required to murder the citizen as a requirement of initiation.12] A fax received at the Nassau County, Florida fire department was forwarded to police, and from there to all city departments. Even the Minister of Defence for Canada was taken in by the same legend; he forwarded an urgent security warning to all Ontario Members of Parliament.
Many urban legends are essentially extended oke or moral tales s, told as if they were true events. Urban legends typically include one or more common elements: the legend is retold on behalf of the original witness or participant; dire warnings are often given for those who might not heed the advice or lesson contained therein (this is a typical element of many e-mail phishing scams); and it is often touted as "something a friend told me," while the friend is identified by first name only or not identified at all. 

One of the classic hallmarks of false urban legends is a lack of specific information regarding the incident, such as names, dates, locations, or similar information.
Persistent urban legends, however unlikely, often maintain at least a degree of plausibility, for instance a serial killer deliberately hiding in the back seat of a car. One such example since the 1970s has been the recurring rumour that the Procter & Gamble Company was associated with Satan worshippers because of details within its nineteenth-century trademark. The legend interrupted the company's business to the point it stopped using the trademark.
The earliest term by which these narratives were known, "urban belief tales," highlights what was then thought to be a key property: they were held, by their tellers, to be true accounts, and the device of the FOAF (acronym for Friend Of A Friend invented by English writer and folklorist Rodney Dale) was a spurious but significant effort at authentication.
While at least one classic legend, the "Death Car", has been shown to have some basis in fact,folklorists as such are interested in debunking these narratives only to the degree that establishing non-factuality warrants the assumption that there must be some other reason why the tales are told and believed. As in the case of myth, these narratives are believed because they construct and reinforce the worldview of the group within which they are told, or "because they provide us with coherent and convincing explanations of complex events".
Recently, social scientists have started to draw on urban legends in order to help explain complex socio-psychological beliefs, such as attitudes to crime, childcare, fast food, SUVs and other "family" choices. Here the authors make an explicit connection between urban legends and popular folklore, such as Grimm's Fairy Tales where similar themes and motifs arise. For this reason, it is characteristic of groups within which a given narrative circulates to react very negatively to claims or demonstrations of non-factuality; an example would be the expressions of outrage by police officers who are told that adulteration of Halloween treats by strangers (the subject of periodic moral panics) is extremely rare, if it has occurred at all. Think it through and dont spread the fear ...please. Its bad enough already.

Justice for the 96..Hang your heads Sir Bernard Ingham and Boris is your time to go to Hell.

Hang your heads in shame Bernard Ingham and Boris Johnson over your comments on Hillsborough
A shockingly callous letter written by Margaret Thatcher's press secretary has come to light in the wake of an inquest jury's ruling that the 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster was caused by police failures.Thatcher and her aide Sir Bernard Ingham visited the stadium the day after the FA Cup semi-final in Sheffield, and were told by South Yorkshire police that "drunken Liverpool fans" had caused the crush that killed 96 people. The pain of families and survivors has been dragged out by several inquests and repeated attempts by the police to minimise their responsibility for the deaths by blaming Liverpool fans' behaviour.Much of the media and political establishment sided with the police as campaigners fought for decades for answers on what really happened on the day of the tragedy.Their protests fell on deaf ears in Thatcher's office, if this 1996 letter from Ingham to Liverpool fan Graham Skinner is anything to go by:
"Thank you for your letter of June 13. I am sorry you are disgusted with the uncomfortable truth about the real cause of the Hillsborough disaster. It is my unhappy experience to find that most reasonable people outside Merseyside recognise the truth of what I say.
All I get from Merseyside is abuse. I wonder why. You are at least right in believing that you will have to put up with my discomforting views. I cherish the hope that as time goes on you will come to recognise the truth of what I say. After all, who if not the tanked up yobs who turned up late determined to get into the ground caused the disaster? To blame the police, even though they may have made mistakes, is contemptible."
Boris Johnson wrote this equally appaling article on Hillsbourough in the Spectator.. He is not the cuddly, idiot you see before you.The real Boris Johnson is shown by his initial approval of this 2004 Simon Heffer article:
"The extreme reaction to Mr Bigley’s murder is fed by the fact that he was a Liverpudlian. Liverpool is a handsome city with a tribal sense of community. A combination of economic misfortune – its docks were, fundamentally, on the wrong side of England when Britain entered what is now the European Union – and an excessive predilection for welfarism have created a peculiar, and deeply unattractive, psyche among many Liverpudlians. They see themselves whenever possible as victims, and resent their victim status; yet at the same time they wallow in it. Part of this flawed psychological state is that they cannot accept that they might have made any contribution to their misfortunes, but seek rather to blame someone else for it, thereby deepening their sense of shared tribal grievance against the rest of society. The deaths of more than 50 Liverpool football supporters at Hillsborough in 1989 was undeniably a greater tragedy than the single death, however horrible, of Mr Bigley; but that is no excuse for Liverpool’s failure to acknowledge, even to this day, the part played in the disaster by drunken fans at the back of the crowd who mindlessly tried to fight their way into the ground that Saturday afternoon. The police became a convenient scapegoat, and the Sun newspaper a whipping-boy for daring, albeit in a tasteless fashion, to hint at the wider causes of the incident. “
The Establishment wished to blame the powerless, the working class, the "yobs" they used the forces of the state, the "Sun" newspaper and the higher ranks of the police force. Now it is your time to go to Hell...Bernard and Boris.......

Liverpool has taken on the Establishment and won. Now Boris Johnson and Bernard Ingham should hang their heads in shame over their comments.

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Fear and Loathing in Mid and West Wales...9 days to go

Blog readings are running at 4,000 per month must be doing something right. Perhaps thats why we had another attack on the blog this morning. Fortunately Neil Wagstaff was only a phone call away. Of course its nothing to do with the election next week. There have been some very unpleasant things going on. I found this forum very interesting

This story is very interesting too......Ballot paper error sinks party's campaign slogan

ONE political party has been forced to re-think its slogan after a ballot paper botch-up.
This week it was announced that a printing error on ballot papers sent out to postal voters the regional list elections for the Welsh Assembly meant new ballots had to be issued for Ceredigion and parts of Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire.
The grey Regional Ballot Paper contains a “small error in the instructions on how to vote”. The correct instructions should state that electors should vote only once by putting a cross in the box next to their choice. The incorrect version wrongly states that electors should vote for only one candidate by putting a cross in the box next to their choice.
The error, which has caused inconvenience to hundreds of voters, has also left the local Green party having to re-think its campaign strategy following the error.
The revised ballot paper being sent out is tan coloured and replaces the initial grey paper which formed the basis of the ‘Vote Green on Grey this May’ campaign.
Leaflets, videos and campaigns will now have to be thrown out and a new campaign launched for the Greens whose spokesperson admitted were “gutted” by the development.
A Green party source said the mid and west Wales region campaign to elect Alice Hooker-Stroud as regional AM had recently printed more leaflets and made a short film for social media which were now both “useless”.
Tom Marshall, Wales Green Party Campaign Manager for the Mid and West Wales region said: “We’ve been running a strong campaign, ‘Vote Green on Grey this May’, encouraging people to vote for Wales Green Party on the grey regional ballot paper to elect Alice Hooker-Stroud in the Mid and West Wales region, so we are extremely disappointed to hear of the error with the ballot papers.
“‘Vote Green on Tan’ just doesn’t have the same ring about it, though we hope voters will do just that to elect Wales’ first Green AM.”
Postal voters in the constituencies of Ceredigion, Preseli Pembrokeshire, and Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire are being advised to wait for new ballot papers to be sent to their home.

Berkeley’s Philosophy..the Imp of Perversity

 There is often a gap between the popular perception of a philosopher’s teaching and his own conception of his teaching. But the gap in Berkeley’s case is particularly wide.
On the one hand, there is his own professed plan to justify common sense and combat skepticism. He reiterates this intention in the first of his three dialogues between Hylas and Philonous. The latter, who represents Berkeley’s position, gets Hylas to agree that the opinion must be true that “upon examination shall appear most agreeable to common sense, and remote from scepticism.” Hylas agrees. Berkeley elsewhere claims to agree with “the Mob” that what he sees and feels and smells is real. He attacks skeptics, who divide sense impressions from the real thing, and thus make it impossible for us to ever be sure we know that we have experienced the thing itself. 
On the other hand, a large part of his philosophical output is an attack on the philosophical concept of matter. Berkeley insists that nothing exists “outside mind” and his fundamental thesis is summarized as “esse is percipi” (to be is to be perceived). This was understood by many to be not common-sensical but nonsensical.
What is he really up to?
Berkeley He states in the preface to the Principles of Human Knowledge that his aim is to answer those tainted with skepticism and who want a demonstration of the existence and immateriality of God. His aim is to make a philosophically compelling a case against materialism, and it will help us to see a couple of the errors that Berkeley thinks are produced by materialism. These are not the arguments he uses to justify his position or attack materialism. Although they anticipate the detailed arguments, they display Berkeley’s deeper motives. He is a God-intoxicated philosopher, wanting to formulate an ontology in which God plays the leading role. He sees his battle with materialists is atheological battle.
Regarding skepticism: Berkeley believes that the distinction betwen the intelligble existence of objects and their “real” and independent existence is the root of skepticism. If the real thing is something “behind” the sensible appearance of things, and if all we are able to perceive and experience is the sensible appearance, then we can never get to the “thing in itself.” We can never know whether our experience of the world is really experience of the world. Perhaps it’s just the experience of our minds. This skepticism arises if we believe we are always behind the “veil of perception.” Berkeley solves the problem by removing the “thing in itself” from his account of the world, and making the veil of perception reality itself. He thinks he has arrived at a non-skeptical system.
Just as important are the religious and theological consequences of materialism, but Berkeley's complaints are not obvious ones. Obviously, if someone is a materialist in the sense that he believes that there is nothing but material reality, then God is excluded. But God can be excluded from consideration, shoved to the edges of reality, in more subtle ways. 
The notion of material substance, he thinks, encourages atheism, and removing it from philosophy will undermine atheism. Doubt about creation has arisen because man cannot conceive of matter being produced from nothing, and so philosophers have posited an eternal and uncreated matter alongside God. But if there is no matter, there is no philosophical problem in the creation of matter. The issue simply evaporates, since we don’t have to puzzle how a spirit can produce matter, or how matter can be created from nothing.
This becomes clearer in subsequent arguments. Man complains that he cannot see God. On Berkeley’s terms, all we have to do is open our eyes to see God. All the sensations we have come from Him, all perceptions are product of the divine spirit. Thus, though we do not see God directly and immediately, everything we do see is an effect of God, or, as he puts it elsewhere, a sign or mark. “God’s visible language.”
For Berkeley, then, God is the most evident thing in the world, the most verifiable, the existence for which there is the most evidence. We miss this because we are too nattentive and stupid to see God when “such clear manifestations” are everywhere.
“Nature” is introduced by heathen philosophers who do not have proper notion of Providence. They don’t believe in a God who is ever active in the details of creation, and therefore attribute the effects they see to something distinct from God called nature. Scripture, however, talks about the effects as being produced by God. Men have an “aversion from believing that God concerns himself so nearly in our affairs.” Christians should have no such aversion.
In the Third Dialogue, he claims that the question between Berkeley and materialists is not the existence of something without the mind of this or that person, but whether anything has anabsolute, we might say “autonomous” existence, apart from the mind of God. This B strenuously denies. Esse is percipi is a theological statement.
In short, for Berkeley, materialism is an effort to remove God further and further from the world, to explain the world more and more without reference to Him, to suggest that, even if God did not exist and rule the world, the world would exist and continue pretty well on its own. This is appalling to his religious convictions, and he thinks he has a set of arguments that shows this to be philosophical nonsense. He wants to demonstrate the utter dependence of the world on God. Materialism, as he sees it, replaces God as the ground of all things with some immanent principle of order, with inert and senseless matter.
Philosophically, the crucial biblical text for Berkeley is “in Him we live and move and have our being.” He wants to take this as absolutely literal: Nothing has independent existence, nothing exists “absolutely,” i.e., apart from God’s perception of it. Berkeley's opposition to matter is only the negative side of his affirmation of the Pauline conviction that “in Him we live and move and have our being.”

30 Years from Chernobyl and there are Nuclear Cuckoos about........

Its the 26th of April, thirty years after the Chernobyl accident. Its the date I knew I was an Ecosocialist and that there was no alternative to that viewand the view of the Green Party. Its 9 days till the Assembly elections. WE must clearly remember that there is only one Green party that presents a clear anti Nuclear stance.

There are Green party candidates standing in North Wales where the lead candidates is Duncan Rees and in particular in Ynys Mon the Green party Candidate Gerry Wolff was quite clear “ For many years I have campaigned on environmental issues, predominantly focusing on climate change. I have long opposed nuclear power and am strongly against the proposed construction of Wylfa B on Anglesey. Renewable energy is a viable alternative and can create desperately needed jobs in the area.There is a pressing need, at all levels of government, to ensure that, in both policies and practice, the environment is protected for current and future generations.” 

              Gerry Wolff and Duncan Rees Wales Green Party                                                 Candidates

PLAID Cymru candidate for Ynys Mon Rhun ap Iorwerth has pledged to fight to ensure development of a new nuclear power plant at Wylfa B is in the interests of the people of Anglesey.

Rhun ap Iorwerth ....a Nuclear Cuckoo?
Rhun ap Iorwerth

Plaid Cymru has been forced to defend its Ynys Môn candidate Rhun ap Iorwerth some years ago after an influential Plaid blogger accused him of telling “blatant lies” and of being a “cuckoo in the nest”.
Michael Haggett, whose blog Syniadau (“ideas” in Welsh), is widely read by members of Plaid, claims the former BBC broadcaster gave dishonest answers when asked about his and the party’s attitude towards the building of a new nuclear power station on the island, known in English as Anglesey.
Many have seen Plaid’s approach to nuclear power as contradictory. While the party officially opposes nuclear power stations, its former leader Ieuan Wyn Jones – whose resignation from the Assembly prompted the election of Rhun Ap Ioerweth – supported the building of the proposed Wylfa B power station on the island.
On his blog, Mr Haggett reproduced a transcript of an exchange between Mr ap Iorwerth and Vaughan Roderick, the presenter of BBC Radio Wales’ Sunday Supplement programme.
Commenting on Mr ap Iorwerth’s assertion, Mr Haggett said on his blog: “If Rhun wants clarity, then we need to be absolutely clear that he is misleading people on this issue by telling blatant lies.
{While} it might or might not be true to say that Plaid used to have a policy of developing nuclear power stations on existing sites at some time in the past, it has most definitely not been Plaid Cymru’s policy for some years. The decision made at conference is that Plaid Cymru are totally opposed to the construction of any nuclear power station in Wales, including a new nuclear power station at Wylfa B and Rhun is deliberately misleading people by pretending otherwise.
He will be a liability to Plaid Cymru for years to come, because he clearly isn’t interested in Plaid’s policies for Wales. He is a cuckoo who has duped his way into our nest in order to follow a private agenda of his own, or the agenda of a narrow interest group within the party that refuses to accept democratic decisions made by the membership as a whole.”
In fact the Plaid conference in 2011 passed a resolution which said: “Plaid Cymru’s total opposition to the construction of any new nuclear power stations. If the Westminster Government gives the go-ahead for a new nuclear power station at Wylfa, we should make sure that the investment recognises the need to employ local people, invest in training to maximise local employment and make sure that indigenous companies benefit from supply chain opportunities.”
A Plaid spokeswoman responded: “We’re very proud of Rhun ap Iorwerth who is an excellent candidate who truly understands the economic realities facing the people of Anglesey and is passionate about building a brighter future for them.
Our positive messages on jobs and the economy are being well received across the island. As the strong local candidate, the people of Anglesey know that Rhun understands the issues they face on a daily basis and is best placed to fight on their behalf in the Assembly.
Rhun has been sincere and honest with regards to his support for securing local, well-paid jobs at Wylfa from the outset, and fully respects those who hold views to the contrary.”
Privately, leading figures in Plaid are seething about the unwelcome intervention by Mr Haggett. A party source said: “ it’s appalling that Michael Haggett has chosen to go public with his criticism.
Thirty years after the Chernobyl accident. For anyone who has a "Green" bone in his body, it is a time for mixed emotions.Sadness, Anger, Frustration, to mention a few. On t.v. and media we see horrific photos of when it happened to the present, where mother nature is trying her best to recover from the worst damage mankind has inflicted on her. Vegetation is a tough old bugger, but animal and human life will be affected indefinitely ? But the question to ask is, what is being done about it.? Simple they build a "shed" over it to hide it and hope that everybody will forget about it. Since Chernobyl we have another similar accident at Fukushima, so now you would think that we ALL would learn the lesson and say enough is enough ? Oh no, that would be to simple, people who have "lost their moral compass" would become normal human beings again, they would not be able to stand for office in public life and say they are representing "us", when in fact they are only representing themselves.? The visit last year of Mr Naoto Kan the former P. M. of Japan, and last week end's visit by the Rev. Nagase for the protest walk, are powerful tools for PAWB's ongoing campaign agains the "Nuclear Lie" but at yesterday's Gov. inquiry perhaps we were gifted with another closer to home.? I do love old proverbs, adages, etc. so here is another. "Give them enough rope and they will hang themselves". A statement by and on behalf of the people of Anglesey said that there are 10,000 unemployed people there. Statistics unearthed by Rhiannon Wolfseem to suggest that these are "spurious" to say the least. The figure being under 2,000. Another statement said that everybody that had been spoken to " couldn't " see the Wylfa Newydd project begin soon enough.

I came across this PAWB article during my daily trawl of events. It was somewhat of a synchronicity..particularly as it is five years from Fukushima and we must remember this. There are frequent debates on the scientific merits of nuclear power and while I am an opponent of it on a scientific level as well as a social and political one. Nuclear power by its very form, nature and structure does not fit into the green model of democracy or structure or accountability. Nuclear power by definition is centralised , risky, needs its own security and police force and belongs to the large powerful nation state.

Wales is a small country it needs to be committed to a decentralised model of politics. Renewable energy is the only way forward to an independent Ecosocialist Wales. It would give the people and communities of Wales direct control over its economy and power supply. I worry about the implications of Daffyd Wigleys comments for many of the excellent EcoSocialists within Plaid. I worry about a post May challenge to its leadership from Rhun ap Iorwerth and his pro nuclear leanings. The article from PAWB was a response to an article in November in the Daily Post. I fear that with the blotting out of the Lib Dems in May an Ap Iorweth Leadership following the style of the naked populism of Peter Black and Neil Macavoy will make Plaid the centralist of the Liberal Democrats. I hope that this will not be the case and many like myself look forward to working with Plaid after May. The dream of an independent, non nuclear non aligned Wales can only come from a cross fertilization between the two parties and those more subtle Corbynistas who do not follow the centralisation of the old Brit left. This is the article 

Sorry Mr Wigley – you’re very wrong

A number of inaccurate statements by Dafydd Wigley (Plaid Cymru) in his Daily Post article on nuclear power on November 5 need to be challenged. Firstly, he says that we need new nuclear power stations to meet “an electricty supply crisis by mid-century.” Demand for electricity has actually fallen in the British state in the past few years. Electricty storage is developing very quickly and note how the biggest economy in Europe, namely Germany is closing all its nuclear stations by 2022 and undertaking a renewable energy revolution. There is no reason why we cannot power our own renewable energy revolution with the best renewable resources in Europe at our disposal.
The massive amount of land bought for the Wylfa B project is a green field location and involves its extensive trashing. Would Dafydd like to comment on the need to store doubly hot and doubly radioactive waste from possible new Wylfa reactors on site for at least 160 years? Does he relish the destruction of the natural beauty of the bay at nearby Porth y Pistyll by building an industrial jetty across it to import building materials?
On the matter of the French EPR reactor proposed for Hinkley and Sizewell, those currently under construction in Finland, France and China are hopelessly over budget and behind schedule. Dafydd’s concerns about decommissioning costs for the EPR reactor apply equally to the ABWR reactor proposed by HitachiGE for Wylfa and Oldbury. He is therefore being inconsistent by welcoming Hitachi’e ABWR to Wylfa as “it is used successfully in four reactors at three different locations”.
What Dafydd fails to mention is that not a single ABWR in Japan is in operation since the triple meltdown of the Fukushima reactors. Even when they were in service they only managed a 56% load factor, well short of the 80% needed to pay their way. They obviously suffered numerous problems leading to shutdowns. Furthermore, a proposed ABWR project for the South Texas site in the USA was abandoned in spring 2011 because nobody wanted to invest in it.

There are still several Nuclear Cuckoos in the Green nest......Vote Green May 5

"A peaceful war, a sweet wound, a mild evil......"