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Author Topic: A party political broadcast on behalf of the BNP
Taylor
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Yes, it was superb.
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Tubby Isaacs
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Hope he doesn't mind me flagging it up.
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Super Sharp Shooter
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Just watched the Powell programme. Interesting, and complex, but ultimately very very flawed. Certainly, there are some howlingly badly advanced positions in it. To be clear, I don't mean from the people being talked about or to, though obviously, there's much of that; I mean from the programme-makers themselves.

The first thing that niggled me was that it kept heavily telegraphing, all the way through, that "there are THOSE who are starting to wonDER if Powell was RIGHT", with suitably portentous music in background. This line was trotted out a good half a dozen times, with no-one who came even close to describing him as anything other than a deranged racist appearing. Then, finally, when it got to the money shot, they pulled out... Powell's biographer.

They also drew some appallingly weak links to bolster the flimsy "did Powell have a point?" corner they'd painted themselves into. The one that rankled me the most deeply was the assertion that the London bombers had been brought up in "multi-cultural Britain", which was used to feed into a "failure of multi-culturalism" argument.

Now, for what it's worth, that's an argument that's worth exploring in a detailed way, and it's certainly not, to me, a verboten line of enquiry. But whoa nelly... the bombers mostly grew up in and around the Dewsbury area, which is by some long margin the most segregated, racially tense place I have ever set foot (I worked there for about a year, and in that entire period, no moves were made by the council to clean up the massive piece of of graffiti that greeted all visitors as they left the railway station: "PAKI GO HOME". This was in 2003, to be clear, not 1965 or anything. For all I know, it's still there.

So the programme's sleight of hand on this: "Hey, look, we've had all these cool ethnic initiatives, and it's not worked" was very dodgy I though. There are no cool ethnic initiatives in towns like Dewsbury.

A missed opportunity, in the end. The programme makers were plainly a bit too eager to play bits of the Clockwork Orange soundtrack over lingering shots of urban decay in the sunset to actually do the hard journalism they falsely promised in the intro, where they claimed the programme would be a detailed analysis of Powell's argument for! the! first! time! on! TV!

Well, it wasn't that, didn't even attempt to be that.

On the upside, it's always very interesting to see old-stagers like Hattersley and Heseltine talking about this stuff, in the way it's always interesting to listen to smart older people who actually lived through the stuff they're talking about and have an insider's take. Also, the palpable loathing for Powell from his contemporaries on both the left and the right was, ultimately, encouraging stuff. (footnote: Old Toryism is interesting in that regard, I've always thought; there's a strand of intellectual liberalism to it that makes your Heseltines into "the enemy you can work with" in a way that Thatcherite Tories and their descendents simply never will be.)

Still though, very thought provoking, and oddly moving in some ways. I'm not sure we've won, yet, but we're definitely winning. Shocking to see how popular Powell was, and Heseltine's chilling (and appalled) assertion that Powell would have won an election by a landslide if he could have forced one on the week of his speech is horrifyingly believable, and encouragingly unbelievable about his wretched offspring like Griffin and Kilroy-Silk.

[ 12.03.2008, 00:29: Message edited by: Super Sharp Shooter ]

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Croute au fromage et oeuf au plat
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Judging by the comments you can read all across the internet, I'm not sure we have won anything SSS, there is a simmering anger which I find quite scary.

Tonight documentary, about (mainly) Polish immigrants in Peterborough was depressing. The incoherent, ranting comments of the people living in the district with the most immigration coupled with the youth at the Job Centre whose casual mixture of xenophobia and benefit culture (the reactions when they were told that they could start a job at once earning 7 quid and hour with excellent overtime pay was very sad to hear) certainly will not reflect very well on the people that series of programme was supposed to portray. The presenter could barely contain his sarcasm at their reaction.

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Super Sharp Shooter
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quote:
Judging by the comments you can read all across the internet, I'm not sure we have won anything SSS, there is a simmering anger which I find quite scary.
Empty vessels. In reality, how much influence over society do these people have? Racists are still utterly disorganised and getting nowhere, and opposition to racism is organised and effective. The post Powell NF years were their high water-mark, and that's getting on for 30 years ago now. The conservatives flirted, under Howard, with trying to pursue an anti immigration agenda, and the mainstream electorate gave them a drubbing for it. This is where it matters, not in comments on the internet.

[ 11.03.2008, 23:44: Message edited by: Super Sharp Shooter ]

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Hieronymus Bosch
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Ah man, that Wingco piece is a laugh and a half. The Terry-Thomas stuff about white men being "not to be trusted with your daughters" . . . brilliant.
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Taylor
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quote:
The first thing that niggled me was that it kept heavily telegraphing, all the way through, that "there are THOSE who are starting to wonDER if Powell was RIGHT", with suitably portentous music in background
Indeed. I almost switched off after thirty seconds, as I was informed that "The LIBERAL ESTABLISHMENT had a very different vision for the country - multiculturalism", illustrated with footage of the Brixton riots and the bus bomb at Tavistock Square.
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Super Sharp Shooter
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Yeah, that was all bullshit that stuff. It horribly overindulged Powell's self-image as The Only Honest Man In Town.
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ursus arctos
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Thanks to Tubbs for linking the Wingco piece.

I may have been on the side of those who claimed to "get" the Stuff that White People Like blog, but Wingco makes that guy look like Paddy Vieira c. 2008.

Bravo, sir.

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E10Rifle
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Missed the prog, being out at the O's, but from guessing I'd say that almost no one involved in the actual making of such programmes would be from a white or black working-class background should probably be factored in. Too often, there's a horrible human-zoo 'look in the microscope' distanced element to these sorts of programmes.

Croute, you're far too politically pessimistic about stuff you know.

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Croute au fromage et oeuf au plat
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I know E10 but I'm a bit worried about the vibe I feel around me at the moment. I have been very much in the SSS camp that the racist cunts are just a bunch of losers and the political setup is not there to give them a strong voice but there is a creeping anger at play, the media are giving it a huge representation and the mainstream political parties are also toying with those fears. When I hear people from backgrounds that should prevent them for sounding out the anti-immigration line (like the Asian lady in Peterborough), I feel worried.
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Super Sharp Shooter
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Well, it is, of course, important not to be complacent about this stuff. But the fact remains that anti immigration is not actually proving to a populist rallying cry. Look at how well Cameron's doing having more or less jettisoned all that rhetoric.
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Croute au fromage et oeuf au plat
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An outright anti-immigration policy is seen as dangerous for the main parties but there is a growing rhetoric of thoughening up immigration laws, Brown "British jobs for British workers" was something that did not sound right coming from the Labour leader for example.

Of course, being an immigrant myself, I might be a tad over-sensitive on the issue.

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Super Sharp Shooter
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Well, yes, I agree. Politicians are always cynically testing the water with that stuff. But my point remains the same: it's still not chiming with majority opinion, and we should be glad about that.
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Croute au fromage et oeuf au plat
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I think we mainly disagree on one point SSS, the amount of people attracted by the anti-immigration rhetoric. One good thing is that those moaning about foreigners generally are not very good at organising themselves nor present a coherent argumentation but I'm wary of a pissed-off lumpenproletariat, if only to avoid having my head kicked in by some bloke in the pub who blames me for his problems.
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