Tuesday, November 24, 2015

To survive as leader, all Corbyn has to do is decide to survive

You know, it's on days like this that Mike "can't be arsed" Smithson utterly baffles me.  The title of his post on Stormfront Lite this morning was "You can get 11/8 on Corbyn being leader at general election. Why I’m not tempted."  For 11/8 to be a value bet, you merely have to think there is a better than 42% chance of Corbyn still being leader in May 2020.  So I was waiting with bated breath to hear why Smithson thinks the likelihood of that happening is in fact 42% or lower - but he didn't say anything at all. (Maybe he couldn't be arsed?)  The post simply consisted of four reposted tweets, two of which clearly support the idea that Corbyn is NOT likely to be deposed.  One is a link to a Stephen Bush article with the title "A new poll shows Jeremy Corbyn is going nowhere", and the other shows that Labour members questioned by YouGov think by a margin of 54% to 33% that it is more important for a party to put forward policies it really believes in than to make compromises that would allow it to win an election.

Bush is particularly worth listening to on this topic. He hasn't been right about absolutely everything this year, but he made a very confident call about the Labour leadership contest that proved to be spot-on, and he was much closer to being right about the general election than most people. There are two major question marks in my mind over whether Corbyn can cling on, and Bush deals with one of them very helpfully. He links to a post by a barrister offering a legal opinion on whether Corbyn would require to be nominated by 20% of the PLP to simply make the ballot paper if he is challenged for the leadership. Although it's conceded there is some ambiguity in the relevant part of the Labour rule-book, the answer is basically no. If that's correct, it removes any realistic chance of Corbyn being directly removed against his will, because any challenger would have to defeat him in a members' and supporters' ballot, and the latest polling evidence suggests that would be nigh-on impossible.

That still leaves the other question mark in my mind, though, which is to do with Corbyn's own commitment to the job. Would he, as Damian McBride implied recently, resign voluntarily at the first sign of a push against him? The fact that he never seemed to have any personal ambition to be leader or Prime Minister doesn't inspire huge confidence that he has the stomach to fight for his position. But the counter-argument is that he has shown plenty of ambition for his own wing of the party. He knows that what happened in September was a historic achievement for the left, and that it could be totally squandered if he walks away. For all the talk about him paving the way for a left-wing succession before the general election, he surely knows that it doesn't work like that. As soon as there is a vacancy, anything could happen. Even if the new leader was vaguely left-ish, who is to say it wouldn't be somebody from the soft left (such as Lisa Nandy) who would then "do a Kinnock"?

To survive as leader, all Corbyn really has to do is decide to survive. And if he's being rational (and receiving rational advice), that's the decision he'll take.

* * *

The SNP's motion calling for Trident not to be renewed was voted down in the House of Commons today by 330 votes to 64. There are 60 MPs from the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Greens, so assuming there was a high turnout among those three parties, the vast majority of Labour MPs -including Jeremy Corbyn himself - must have abstained on the question of whether Britain should retain its nuclear weapons. Surely Corbyn's position as the vice-president of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament is now untenable?

72 comments:

  1. Mike "stuff the jocks" Smithson's opinions are only useful for comedy purposes and as a précis of the current westminster bubble idiocy.

    I think you have it right James in that it basically all comes down to whether Corbyn gives in to the odious Blairites and with Corbyn displaying all the same kind of weakness towards them that little Ed did I'd say they'll get their way eventually.

    Corbyn was never leader material any more than little Ed was and that more than anything else finished little Ed and will finish Corbyn.

    It's not as if the Blairites and their hangers on have any sort of strategy or coherent platform after all. They still want to be Red Tory mini-me's and somehow haven't noticed that the inept Hameron has a tiny majority and can barely pass legislation precisely because his second rate Blair impersonation is so laughably incompetent.
    (see today's priceless 'ISIS have WMD's!' as all the proof you need that Hameron and the stupid party are back to their amusingly fuckwitted Blairite ways.)

    Nevertheless, the Labour careerists don't need a strategy or baggage like 'beliefs' and wouldn't know what to do with them even if they somehow found any. All they need are enough careerist MPs who despise Corbyn and their own members left-leaning stance on policy to make his tenure as LOTO untenable. Something which they started the moment he was elected and aren't about to stop any time soon.

    After all, if there's one thing the Blair Brown wars did it was to ensure that unprincipled liars and careerists would prosper in the PLP with the ability to undermine their own side and leader counted as a valued skill. Well now Corbyn has all of those sleazy and unprincipled Blarite and Brownite guns aimed directly at him undermining his every word and deed.

    They absolutely will not stop until he is made to look even more feeble, ineffectual and useless then little Ed. Only then will he agree to finally go knowing that he can't possibly win or advance any left leaning policies with almost all his own MPs actively undermining him and totally opposed to any shift away from the establishment/tory orthodoxies that keep the Blairites so well renumerated and rewarded.

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  2. With respect to the SNP's motion on Trident, it's always been a cheap trick to put forward a headline grabbing motion like this and try and back your rivals into a corner over it. The reason Corbyn told his MPs to avoid taking part in this is because he wanted to avoid the inevitable internal confrontation over it within Labour. It says nothing whatsoever about his own views on the issue and the idea that you have to back every motion the SNP come up with on Trident in parliament (or else you're presumed to support Trident by default) is low grade political spin at best - and, for that matter, one of the oldest political tricks going.

    I think people are intelligent enough to see through this kind of point-scoring charade and judge Corbyn on his own record in opposing nuclear weapons.

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    1. Sure, the electorate know fine well Labour are pro-trident but as a party feel awkward about holding that right-wing policy as they try to pretend to be left wing.

      It's one of the reasons Labour got thrashed in Scotland.

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    2. "because he wanted to avoid the inevitable internal confrontation over it within Labour"

      Precisely. Corbyn is a jellyfish as weak and ineffectual as little Ed was.

      Appeasing the odious Blairites will only ever end one way, with Corbyn eventually forced out.

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    3. Scottish_Skier: Most people know fine well that Labour are split on the issue and that Labour MPs were instructed directly to avoid taking part in this debate (which was only ever going to end in one way) as a result.

      To claim that this makes Corbyn's position as vice-president of the CND "untenable" is either woefully uninformed as to Corbyn's motivation, or a dubious bit of political spin on behalf of the SNP. Either way it's not serious political analysis - whatever you think of Corbyn.

      ----

      As an aside, the idea that supporting nuclear weapons makes you "right-wing" is a bit problematic at the best of times: or has history forgotten those great right-wingers Mao Zedong and Stalin?

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    4. "Precisely. Corbyn is a jellyfish as weak and ineffectual as little Ed was. Appeasing the odious Blairites will only ever end one way, with Corbyn eventually forced out."

      Anyone with an ounce of political awareness knows what the strategy from the SNP is here: Trident is a difficult issue for Labour so the vote offered a useful opportunity to stir up division among their opponents. Corbyn tried to head that off, as almost anyone in his position would, by simply ignoring the motion (which had no chance of passing anyway).

      It's fine as a piece of political point scoring, but I assume we're all reasonable adults and can call a spade a spade rather than parroting the party line. It says nothing about Corbyn's views on Trident hence any claim about his position at the CND being "untenable" is pretty limp to put it mildly.

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    5. Rosalind : This is not "spin". If you're the vice-president of CND, in my view your position is untenable if you decide not to vote for nuclear disarmament. There was nothing "tricksy" about the SNP motion - it was perfectly straightforward. Corbyn has previously voted for the same motion. Tactical party management considerations is not a good enough excuse for failing to vote in favour of your principles when you're the vice-president of CND, for pity's sake.

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  3. I agree with SS about this one, it's why I'm not sure that the Carmichael affair will have as much impact as might be expected.

    I can't see the Natalie McGarry thing having too much impact, if there's one thing you can say about Scots, we're very good at rationalising the behaviour of our own side, whichever side that may be. 'It's ok when we do it' might as well be the national motto.

    You need something like the sustained sleaze allegations that hit the Conservatives in the 90's to really have a big impact. So until the Glorious 56 (55, 54...) become the Glorious 48, we probably won't see much of a dent in the polls.

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    1. Doh. That was meant to be a reply to SS's 1.13pm thread on the previous blogpost. Apologies for the confusion on my end.

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    2. I don't think James would mind it here.

      But aye, parties lose support for things like being completely incompetent, for going back on manifesto promises in a big way, for pretending to be something they are not.

      Sleaze really needs to be big, widespread and, crucially, proven for it to have an effect, and even then it is probably the straw that breaks the camels back, i.e. comes on the back of incompetence or promise breaking.

      Man the Tories are sleazy as hell but they're still the UK government!

      Voters of course watch how a party reacts to corruption / sleaze. If it e.g. acts appropriately like the SNP have, then voters see that as a positive and it could even strengthen that party's support. In contrast, protect the MP in court (like the Lib Dems are doing with Carmichael) and that can hurt you.

      Voters can also tell quite well if something is being blown out of proportion (like the SNP cases right now) and react to that by being angry at those trying to make political capital from it by essentially lying. They are also aware of bias and right now the unionist press is once more doing itself serious damage by clearly not being remotely impartial or even minimally subjective.

      Treating the electorate like fools is something political parties - and newspapers - should seriously avoid. They electorate as a whole are not stupid and don't like being treated like the are.

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    3. Very true.

      In many ways one of the less welcome legacies of the referendum is that Scottish politics is becoming more like that in the USA.
      The body politic is now deeply entrenched, highly tribal and they have an almost visceral and immediate distrust of anything said by the others.

      Everything is either 'Nationalist Zealotry' or 'Unionist Lies', depending on who is listening. While comments that support are uncritically swallowed, no matter what the source or how unlikely they appear.

      Even the language echoes what's going on the U.S. We use words like Unionist and Cybernat the same way they use Liberal and Teabagger, and people huddle around demagogues who peddle the party line, nodding to each other about how right they are, and how dreadful the other side is.

      I would claim it's the legacy of the referendum campaign (although not the referendum itself), but it's not just us. We seem to be seeing it all over right Europe right now. Maybe it's just where we are these days.

      Sesame Street politics in the 21st century, brought to you by Twitter, and by a lack of nuance.

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    4. I can't say that reflects my personal relationship with No voters, some of whom I count as good friends, but that describes political parties they world over to varying extents.

      Party tribalism certainly isn't a legacy of the referendum. UK has always been like that in terms of e.g. Labour versus Tory. When e.g. thatcher was destroying the UK's industrial base it wasn't pretty. Riots on the streets of England over the poll tax for example.

      In fact the UK is far worse. Go visit some UK blogs and you'll meet proper Tories and Kippers for instance tearing the eyes out of those bloody lefties. Scotland is much more politically united, as seen in the recent elections and polling which has a majority for all but independence in the form of devo max (and maybe narrowly indy now).

      In England they are far more divided, with no party polling anything over 40% of the vote.

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  4. Politicians at Holyrood should debate and vote on Westminster's desire to escalate the uk's military involvement in Syria.

    "Not in our name" might be the result.

    The BritNat media will hate us for doing so of course and Westminster will bleat about non-devolved matters, but why should we take heed of these reactionary groups.

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  5. I think the Corbyn affairs are really starting to expose the mindset of the media North and South of the border. However, the traditional media are on their way to a slow death and desperate people do desperate things.

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    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 8:58 PM

      What border?

      Delete
    2. If you don't think there's a border, try launching a series of appeals against a criminal conviction, and see if your last port of call is in Edinburgh or London.

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  6. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 8:46 PM

    I am sure some in the Nat si party must support the deterrent but just followed the party line. Put 57 people in a room and they all agree, I think not.
    A sensible decision by the Commons. The USSR finally collapsed due to the will of NATO.
    And who was against NATO during the Cold War chaps. CP Of GB, CND and an array of hard lefties. The collapse of their wonderful utopian CCCP left them stunned and in
    shock instead of being happy WW3 did not happen.

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    1. Tell that to the millions of people who died as a result of the Cold War, which effectively WAS a slow-motion Third World War.

      If you think there are SNP MPs who are privately pro-Trident, by all means tell us who they are

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    2. "The collapse of their wonderful utopian [socialist] CCCP"

      Tartan Tory.

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    3. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 10:24 PM

      James, what millions and where? The only people who suffered were those in the Warsaw Pact countries. And as I said it is strange that if you put 57 people in a room they will all be in agreement. Although you Nat sis are a disciplined group. Disagree and Kim Jung Eck will issue a decree.
      So James what will you Nat sis do when Trident is renewed? Pull out of NATO!
      Risk no investment from NATO countries no chance of EU membership. Just live with your Nat si pride whilst the country goes down the tube.

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    4. The millions who died in Korea, Vietnam, Angola, Afghanistan and elsewhere. I take it you slept through those?

      Where is this "57" coming from? There were 56 SNP MPs elected in May. They all agree with each other on independence - presumably you think that's a highly implausible coincidence.

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    5. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 11:00 PM

      I slept through Korea.. however those were seperate wars. The Cold War was between NATO and the Warsaw Pact. Basically just military exercises and some spy's. The Soviets lost James does that bother you? Ok 56/57 Nat si spongers who really cares they are a shambles with nothing to offer the British people. Why do they not have the bottle and honesty to say to NATO we do not want you or Trident and will boot you out of Scotland if we gain independence.
      What you say James. And those British war ships being built on the Clyde James what ya say about that. Sack the workers James!

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    6. Oh, for heaven's sake. You'll struggle to find a single historian who agrees with your assessment that the Korean, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Angolan wars were not part of the Cold War. The overall death toll of the Cold War has been estimated to be as high as 9 million - and that excludes indirect "excess deaths".

      Could you please explain to me who this 57th person is, by the way?

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    7. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 12:41 AM

      Nah that was just other wars. I do not know any historians do you?

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    8. Nobody died in World War II. If anyone appeared to die as a result of armed conflict between 1939 and 1945, those were "other wars". The real World War II was just harmless spying, and a wee bit of argy-bargy at the lineout.

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    9. James, to back up your original point, an article entitled "Think Again: War" in the September/October 2011 issue of the much respected 'Foreign Policy' Magazine which was writen by Emeritus Professor Joshua S. Goldstein of School of International Service, American University referenced relevant research by the Peace Research Instute in Oslo. That body has apparently estimated that 180,000 battlefield related deaths per year occurred during the era of the Cold War (1950 to 1989).

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  7. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 10:45 PM

    Trident will be renewed so the Scottish Parliament should stop their moaning and facilitate this. They could of course state clearly that they want out of NATO. Now that would be honest as the membership were pressed into wanting to stay inspite of the views of the Nat si membership. The hypocricy in the the SNP is astounding.

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    1. What are you even talking about? How could the Scottish Parliament "facilitate" the renewal of Trident, even if it wanted to?

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    2. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 11:06 PM

      Eh! An indepedent Scotland would have a choice. They could say leave please!

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    3. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 11:28 PM

      So there are only 56 Nat si spongers in the Commons and 64 arseholes voted against Trident. That is a lot of smell in such a small workplace.

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    4. You constantly refer to the SNP and it's supporters as the Nat sis, which is an obvious attempt at accusing them of being Nazis. The Nazis most memorable feature was their responsibility for the deaths of millions of Jews. The comparison of the SNP to the Nazis must therefore be false as the SNP have not been responsible for the deaths of millions of Jews, unless you believe that either the death camps were fake, or the deaths of the Jews were insignificant.

      So, are you anti-semitic, a holocaust denier, or both?

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    5. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 12:00 AM

      Nothing is obvious and you are a fool. If you have a problem with Jews then state it clearly or stick to the subject in hand which is Trident and Nat si braindead.

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    6. Disgusting troll. Eat your cereal.

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    7. I don't have a problem with Jews at all.

      In fact, I am a Jew.

      You fucking disgust me.

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    8. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 26, 2015 at 8:52 PM

      Whit Mosque dae ye attend then?

      Delete
  8. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 24, 2015 at 11:09 PM

    So James why did the Nat sis change their minds and want to join NATO?

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  9. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 1:26 AM

    Och well Joke Nat sis lost the argument and away tae ther scratchers tae think again. What a waste of talent! Aye.

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    1. Eat your Daily Mail

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    2. A good, solid, patriotic, Christian newspaper. Standing up for moral values and instilling moral fibre!

      And it outsells "The National" 7 to 1.

      Aldo

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    3. Aye, it takes a lot of moral fibre to send the paparazzi round to hassle people. All the more so after the Wail swore it would stop using the paparazzi

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  10. Can you not block the troll. It's tiresome having to scroll past its posts

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  11. So Corbyn is basically locked in as Labour leader then? Wonderful.

    How dumb not to have a mechanism to remove crap leaders. But, hey, that's Labour for you! The one time they did get a bit regicidal, they forced out Blair - their most successful leader. You couldn't make it up.

    The tories with their flick of the dagger and swift removal of no hopers will always be able to run rings around them. And, for the foreseeable future, that is precisely what will happen.

    Aldo

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  12. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 12:23 PM

    You are righ Aldo. Labour are a party that walk themselves into the wilderness. They are like the various left fringe groups that are scared to have responsibility but prefer hurling abuse from the pavements.


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  13. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 12:40 PM

    James the Nat sis have all the economic and academic experts so perhaps they could answer the if the what if were to happen. Scotland goes independence and demands Trident is removed. NATO declines Scotlands request formembership. Britain votes to get out of the EU. Scotland has seperate immigration policies contrary to England. Could England place border controls and refuse the movement of goods and people between Scotland and England?

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    1. Yes, in theory, but that would destroy England's economy. The forecourts of petrol stations would for example run dry in a matter of days. Supermarkets would run out of food and riots would follow. Likewise, people's gas heating would stop working and the lights would start to go out in Northern England.

      You know this right? Scotland only uses 10% of the oil it produces, the UK relies on the rest. Similar case for gas. The new multi-billion dollar Laggan-Tormore development is to supply 20% of the UK's gas or 200% of Scotland's... Then we have e.g. the new Culzean field that's now going ahead to supply another 5% (or 50% of Scotland's gas).

      England is a very resource poor country highly dependent on imports for energy and food. Scotland is the opposite.

      England would struggle to 'survive alone' without open trade agreements.

      I suppose it could get more gas and oil from Russia. Putin would love that; his efforts in Syria are after all to try and ensure increasing European - including the UK - dependency on Russian and Iranian gas.

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    2. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 7:16 PM

      Good case fur ra Union then Skier. We are all Jock Tamsons Bairns and that includes all ra wurkin claas.

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 7:52 PM

      Skier, wee Geordie Osborne has let the Nat sis aff ra hook by drappin ra Tax Credit cuts. You will recall the Nat sis said they would make up the difference tae ra cuts. Now they need not tax the Jock well aff. Pheeew whit a relief fur ra Tartan Tories. Jocks need not put hand in ra pocket tae help ra poor but still keep oan moanin.

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    4. Eat your cereal.

      Delete
  14. As a regular reader of James' pieces and an academic with a social science background, as well as being disabled and frequently at home in recovery, unable to go out, I find myself turning to BTL comments for simple human interaction, I don't mind admitting. Quite often I find myself about to post here but delete my comments, even though I know they would contribute constructively to the conversation, because I am dissuaded by the grossly offensive terminology used by Glasgow Working Class in reference to all independence supporters who comment, I take it assuming them all to be part of some homogenous group, and likening them, the SNP and the same party as the Scottish Government, to Nazis, with the not too clever play on words of 'Nat sis'.

    The inference in the wording is clear and having just come past the point in the year when those who died at the hands of the actual Nazis may be foremost in many people's minds, I wonder if Glasgow Working Class, regardless of the political motivations, considers the level of offence this flippant use of terminology may cause? I noticed a post on a thread yesterday by Marcia to this effect; likewise I notice above the undaunted GWC brushes off the fairly accurate assessments and questions of Anonymous so I realise this is likely to be ignored too.

    Entering into unnecessarily heated, emotively charged argument contributes greatly to lowering my seizure threshold(I have refractory frontal lobe epilepsy and have around 80 seizures a day), so I don't post as a direct result of GWC's posturing; how many others are excluded in this fashion? Surely there is a case, given that the nature of offensiveness in the terminology used has been pointed out over and over, leaving aside the facile level argument often used in support of it by GWC, for a prosecution under the Malicious Communications Act 1988, which legislates against harassment defined in part as 'electronic communication which is...grossly offensive in nature.'. Under the Act it is an offence to 'cause distress or anxiety to...any person to whom he intends that it's (the communication's) contents or nature should be communicated.'. Given that the particular term is only meant to cause offence and can only have one correlative, and that an email address or IP could easily be found through the blog, how about giving it a rest with it GWC or maybe some of us will raise our concerns further. There is no room in civic debate for that kind of language, refrain or suffer the consequences surely should be the mantra. It is not an attempt to shut down debate or free speech, it is exactly the opposite when use of language like it causes the offence it does and alienates others from the conversation.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 7:27 PM

      THL. I am retired due to ill health and find it difficult getting out and about. My illness dictates my freedom of movement. No one is to blame. I do not moan or complain as there is no point. I have never lost my sense of humour. Being brought up in a Glesga tenement is recommended. Those Nat sis dae make me laugh with their moanin and hard tae stories.

      Delete
    2. Humour which denigrates the suffering of others isn't humour at all GWC; I wasn't complaining about my condition, I live with it, run a small business employing other epileptics and people with disabilities who are disadvantaged in the workplace, and contribute to research in changing how the condition is treated clinically and socially, I only mentioned it because today was a recovery day and yet again you were all over the thread with the same stuff, ignoring others pleas to stop, whilst your having a hoot to yourself how many other folk don't even bother contributing because they know the tiresome responses which will inevitably come. James often posts based on statistical data open to interpretation, I for one enjoy reading others thoughts on it but have begun avoiding BTL altogether because it's always full of the same stuff from you, guess I'll stick to that and leave you to laugh it up with the few who enjoy it!

      Delete
    3. WeSaidNoToYesMen :-)November 27, 2015 at 2:59 PM

      Calling someone a nazi sin't illegal tumshie. Were you thinking about grassing Salmond up for his BBC gauleiter chat

      Grossly offensive would be physical threats and illegal sexual references going by past prosecutions

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    4. I've outlined in my other posts why the term could be construed as 'grossly offensive or cause anxiety' within the terms of the Act, whilst using the term in itself may not be illegal the context could be construed as, there have been numerous prosecutions based on similar usage of other terms, it's the context of the offensiveness which applies not always precedent.

      Delete
  15. You are mental...it's a parody account....there are countless references within gwcs posts to show the person (he?) Is way more intelligemt than the unionist he is parodying. Vague threats like yours...ignore or sometimes engage....James who writes this blog does that...why are you bothered...makes it all the more colourful...a silly play on words like Nat sis....obviously just a joke...or are we not allowed to make such jokes? Grow a set

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    1. It's not a joke to those who had family killed in concentration camps; the parody wears thin and the joke gets old, the offence remains to the person and within the law, the threats weren't vague, I quoted the specifics of the Act being contravened.

      Grow a set? Did you read up on the nature of my condition before you threw that one out? Get informed or we will continue to live in the dark ages, ignorance is no excuse.

      Delete
    2. It's just as tedious having the same person saying the same thing over and over in a BTL discussion as it would be in real life, especially for those with little other interaction who would like to engage with the thread, I explain clearly why I'm bothered in my original post but you obviously prefer things being more 'colourful' than being inclusive and morally right, enjoy that.(incidentally, calling someone with a severe neurological condition 'mental' is just as offensive as anything else noted above Jam, or do you not think about others before you type, just think it will all add to the colour?)

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    3. I don't know what this blt thing you keep referring to is....doesn't bother me what gwc says...obviously not serious, people make jokes don't see what the problem is...I see the Nat sis as a parody of those who refer to the nationalists making allusions to the malign forms that have sprung up...there are a number of comic references in his posts that point to that.you might not see them...I accept such a tactic may be seen as controversial especially those that miss it but so what...it's a pish taker on a message board...the fact that he's called Glasgow working class should give you pointers..and his increasingly ridiculous Nazi Germany parallels....it's a parody of the ridiculous arguments that nawbags use...as to its usefulness, well I'll grant that, probably not that much, but no worth getting intae a stooshie aboot.

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    4. From my point of view it clearly is Jam; I avoided some of the reasons for personal offence taken because they are that, personal; a brief précis for you, my grandad was a pow in ww2 and never got over it, suffering what we'd now call ptsd until his dying day; my gran, who it seems I inherited my condition from, in her last days was not only addled by the clustering nature of seizures in the condition but also continually triggered by dementia led, highly upsetting and emotive obsession over what happened to my grandad, repeating the N name over and over...anecdotal and personal I know but when I am made emotive and clusters of seizures are partly triggered by flippant, unnecessary comparisons, whether made in parody or not, and can't respond due to that trigger, and all I wanted to do was read James blog and comments when already recovering from a seizure cluster, when I have had the capacity it has been wholly necessary to speak up. I shouldn't be put in that position and the potential for offence should be respected. That's the nature of free speech, you can say what you like if it doesn't stop others saying what they like; walking a mile in someone else's shoes doesn't just mean you'll be a mile away and have their shoes!

      It's taken a long time to develop a notion of civic nationalism and like you say the usefulness of a GWC type 'parody', if there is any at all, is wholly undermined by its negative consequences. It will take a careful navigation of the civic space to convince the necessary percentages of no voters to have confidence in independence based arguments, parodies of the most resolute among them and calling them 'nawbags' will convince them of nothing but the validity of their prior position, entrenching the debate further, surely.(BTL - below the line, the comments after an article or blog etc)

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    5. Apologies if the 'blt' ref was a joke and I was being too po-faced to respond in kind!

      Delete
    6. It's satirical...I know it can be offensive. I believe the author is writing with tongue firmly in cheek...it can't be too obvious as everyone then knows it's parody....the joke is made to look on gwc and by extension nawbags of his ilk....probably not too useful I agree...maybe challenge on that basis just a thought.
      .. Below the line thanks no I didn't know that. Sorry to hear of your personal tale by the way...on the nawbag front you're probably right but there is an argument for getting tore intae them....frustration based and no unlikely to be productive but I understand what motivates it..

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    7. Thank you for a bit of patience in trying to mediate my ire a little Jam, appreciated; I explained my position a bit more not for sympathy, just to show mine wasn't just a knee jerk reaction and that GWC's 'satire', if that's what is intended, may miss the mark widely more often than it hits and have repercussions which are difficult for those involved to see any humour in, just ask the people of Kazakhstan what they think of what Sacha Baron Cohen did for the world's perception of them and their culture, satire's a tricky one to pull off, especially in a covert context!

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  16. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 8:51 PM

    It was petty Nationalism in Germany and some surrounding countries that were ultimately responsible for the concentration camps. Nationalism always seeks a bogey man just like the Nat sis blame the English for their heamoroids. I noted from the Yes and NO campaign many Nat sis were supporters of Palestinian Islamic Fascists.

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    1. More recent example of concentration camps:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mau_Mau_Uprising#Human_rights_abuses_in_British_concentration_camps

      Human rights abuses in British concentration camps

      In order to fight the Mau Mau insurgency during the conflict, British troops suspended civil liberties in Kenya. In response to the rebellion, many Kikuyu were relocated. Between 320,000-450,000 of them were moved into concentration camps. Most of the remainder - more than a million - were held in "enclosed villages".

      Of course Hitler modelled his concentration camps on earlier ones. These:

      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/not-his-finest-hour-the-dark-side-of-winston-churchill-2118317.html

      The young Churchill charged through imperial atrocities, defending each in turn. When concentration camps were built in South Africa, for white Boers, he said they produced "the minimum of suffering". The death toll was almost 28,000, and when at least 115,000 black Africans were likewise swept into British camps, where 14,000 died, he wrote only of his "irritation that Kaffirs should be allowed to fire on white men". Later, he boasted of his experiences there: "That was before war degenerated. It was great fun galloping about."

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  17. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 25, 2015 at 10:02 PM

    Skier.How wrong of you and I am surprised. The Nazi camps were industrialised factories built deliberately to dispose of mainly Jews, trade unionists the elderly, disabled and weak. People that were considered unproductive.

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    1. Reductio ad lex Godwinium. (sigh)

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  18. Anyone else see McDonnell brandishing Mao's little red book? Unbelievable.

    Aldo

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassNovember 26, 2015 at 8:15 PM

      He forgot tae say that millions died fur ra wee red book. Surprised the Nat sis did not hiv a wee Tartan Book during the referendum debate.

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    2. I wonder what the SNP were thinking during that little debacle? Probably a combination of amusement, horror and guilt.

      A tartan book full of quotes from Alex Salmond - from Mao Zedong to Alex the Dong! We could do mass readings from it wearing our kilts.

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