Tag Archives: Owen Jones

France has public ownership of energy. Why can’t the UK have that too?

The problem: energy prices are set to have quadrupled within a year and the Tory government is doing nothing about it.

Controversial as he may be in many respects, Owen Jones makes a lot of good points in this short clip from an appearance on Jeremy Vine’s show.

Firstly, because the energy firms are private companies, their shareholders have received £200 billion in dividends since 2010 – money that could have been used to reduce bills instead, or to free the UK from dependence on fossil fuels provided by foreign suppliers (this would have eliminated the price shock that has sent our bills skyrocketing today).

We’ve been told profits have increased fourfold because of the price increases – and very little of that is likely to go into energy independence; 60 per cent of these new profits will go to shareholders.

The energy industry is a natural monopoly which should never have been privatised. The solution to the price problem is to re-nationalise the industry and impose stern pricing controls on bills sent to the public. Windfall taxes on the companies are not enough.

See/hear for yourself:

Sadly, nobody in any position to affect the energy crisis is even thinking of re-nationalisation, despite the example of France, where price increases are pinned at an affordable four per cent.

Even Labour leader Keir Starmer thinks the energy firms should remain in the hands of billionaires – a position that sets him against the vast majority of his party’s members.

But then, who cares about that? Starmer’s party “reforms” have ensured that the opinions of Labour members won’t have any impact on party policy in the future. The membership exists to service the desires of the party’s elite MPs, candidates and other high-level representatives.

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Man assaulted Owen Jones out of hatred for his political views and homophobia, court rules

Abuse: Owen Jones has experience of dealing with abuse from the far right. This shot shows him being pursued by James Goddard in January last year.

This Site reported the assault shortly after it happened. It’s good to see justice done and know that the far-right crazies can’t get away with anything they like, just because another far-right crazy is in Downing Street.

I don’t agree with Mr Jones about everything he says but he certainly should not be threatened with violence over the opinions he expresses.

A man has been found guilty of aggravated assault against the Guardian columnist Owen Jones because of hostility to his leftwing political views and homophobia, following a two-day trial at Snaresbrook crown court.

Anne Studd QC, the presiding judge, concluded at the end of the hearing that Jones was the victim of a “wholly unprovoked assault” outside a central London pub last August because of “his LGBT and his leftwing beliefs”.

The defendant, James Healy, 40, had “far-right” views, Studd added, as evidenced by a collection of memorabilia found at his Portsmouth home, including items with logos or mottos from far right group Combat 18, white supremacist groups and hooligan groups associated with Chelsea football club.

Healy had already pleaded guilty to assaulting Jones last August outside the Lexington pub in King’s Cross, north London, at about 2am. But he was on trial to determine whether his actions were motivated by homophobia and hostility to Jones’s leftwing views.

Healy is one of three men who have admitted being involved in the incident. He and Liam Tracey, 34, from Camden, north London, and Charlie Ambrose, 29, from Brighton, all pleaded guilty to affray last month. Healy also admitted a further charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Sentencing for all three men is due to take place next month at the earliest. Healy will receive a greater than normal sentence because of the aggravating factors.

Source: Man found guilty of aggravated assault against Owen Jones | UK news | The Guardian

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Lefty journo Owen Jones beaten in ‘blatant premeditated’ assault

Abuse: Here’s James Goddard doing his best to rile Owen Jones.

Left-wing journalist Owen Jones has suffered injuries to his head and back after a “blatant premeditated assault” as he was celebrating his birthday with friends.

Mr Jones, who has reported the incident to the police, tweeted that he was “in no doubt as to what this is”, pointing out that members of the political far right had tried to intimidate him in the past.

Here’s his account:

How cowardly of the attackers – to approach from behind and hit their victim in the back.

He later added: “What happened – to be clear – is they spotted me in the pub, waited for us to leave, and then launched their attack when we were away from the pub – it was planned, not a random attack.”

This attack is symptomatic of a terrifying trend in the UK – possibly provoked by successive Conservative governments that have weakened our police while stoking hatred with divisive rhetoric.

We’ve seen Mr Jones and Anna Soubry (and possibly others) threatened by right-wing demonstrators on College Green, outside Parliament.

We have also seen a rise in intimidating behaviour from groups claiming to represent British Jews; consider the treatment of venues in Brighton that considered hosting Chris Williamson’s recent speech there and remember that Mr Williamson has not been found to have committed any anti-Semitic acts.

Jewish Voice for Labour has called on the Board of Deputies of British Jews to condemn this behaviour but that organisation – which sent representatives to Brighton to protest while Mr Williamson was making his speech (were they responsible for the filming of attendees?) – had not responded at the time of writing.

Who else will be emboldened to threaten the rest of us?

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Gobby Brextremist Goddard arrested again – for threatening photographer

Gobby James Goddard: His tendency to let his mouth run away with him keeps getting him arrested.

Remember James Goddard, the pro-Brexit fanatic who got arrested after intimidating incidents involving Anna Soubry, Owen Jones and others on College Green, Westminster, last month?

No?

Well, it’s hardly surprising.

It’s even less surprising that he has been arrested again – this time for threatening a press photographer.

It seems a recording exists of him telling Joel Goodman, “I swear to god when there’s no police around here, I’m going to take your head off your shoulders, and all the football lads will as well, your card is marked … Trust me, next time you’re in London mate, you’re finished.”

The full details are available on Zelo Street.

As intimidation attempts go, it’s not very convincing. As a propagandist, this guy doesn’t hold a candle to Lord Haw Haw. Or even Lord Snooty.

Perhaps we might call him Lord Snotty?

Or perhaps we should refuse to give him and his ilk the time of day.


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Tory double standards: Abuse them and the police are called – but they can abuse anyone freely

Pointing the finger: A Conservative MP shouts at Commons Speaker John Bercow during discussion of the Grieve Amendment.

Conservative MPs have been at their abusive worst in Parliament – heckling Speaker John Bercow over his decision to allow a vote on the so-called Grieve Amendment, and hurling insults at Jeremy Corbyn, ironically as he called for a “safe space” from such behaviour during Prime Minister’s Questions.

The hypocrisy comes into sharp focus when one recalls that only two days before, Conservative MPs wrote to Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, demanding stronger policing of the area outside the Palace of Westminster to prevent abuse of the kind directed at Conservative MP Anna Soubry by (right-wing pro-Brexit) protesters on Monday.

Note that I put “right wing pro-Brexit” in parentheses because there seems to be a concerted effort to airbrush this fact out of the record, along with the abuse of left-wing journalist Owen Jones by the same people. We’ll come to that shortly.

First, let’s consider yesterday’s Parliamentary antics, starting with the Grieve Amendment. Tory backbencher and former Attorney General Dominic Grieve had proposed an amendment to legislation that gives the government 21 days to say what happens next if its Brexit deal is voted down, and a further seven sitting days (days in which Parliament is in session) in which to hold a vote.

The amendment reduces the time allowed before a statement is made to just three days. It isn’t binding, but it would be extremely damaging to Theresa May if she failed to do so.

MPs objected because they claimed the original legislation was unamendable. Mr Bercow held a different view:

Let’s see if I can dig out some examples of the behaviour he had to endure. Here’s Arj Singh:

That’s mild. Try this:

Mr Clarke’s reference was to the right-wingers who abused Ms Soubry and Mr Jones, and hints as to the attitudes he saw being expressed around him.

Then we had the hypocrisy of the Leader of the House, Andrea Leadsom:

Here’s the icing on this particularly rotten cake – the moment when Tory MP Adam Holloway accused Mr Bercow of trying to sabotage Brexit, claiming as evidence that the Speaker has a pro-Remain sticker on his car. The slapdown was brilliant:

https://twitter.com/SidUnite/status/1083002551493189637

It seems clear that the behaviour of these Conservatives lowered the tone of debate in the Commons and arguably harmed the reputation of Parliament itself – although some would say that this cannot happen as they have already damaged it irreparably:

The arguments over the Amendment were – sadly – only a sequel to a similar unseemly display during Prime Minister’s Questions.

Both Mrs May and Mr Corbyn mentioned the intimidation of Ms Soubry and Mr Jones on Monday. The prime minister said politicians and the media should be able to go about their work without harassment and intimidation.

Sadly, her backbenchers did not pay any attention to her (perhaps cementing our opinion that she is no leader) and poured abuse at Mr Corbyn while he agreed with her. He said: “We also have to be clear that intimidation is wrong outside this building as it is wrong in any other aspect of life in this country, and we have to create a safe space for political debate.”

By this point, the level of heckling had reached a point beyond which he could not continue, so he pointed it out: “You see what I mean, Mr Speaker; I am calling for a safe space for political debate.”

The Tory perpetrators may have enjoyed themselves but the public drew the appropriate conclusions, as the following comments bear out:

https://twitter.com/Wirral_In_It/status/1082976660322955264

And of course, that is what they have been trying to do.

Possibly worse than the habitually abusive behaviour of Tory MPs is the apparent attempt to pretend that the only person suffering abuse on College Green on Monday was Ms Soubry.

I myself was so surprised to see her mentioned on the BBC’s lunchtime Politics Live show – and not Owen Jones, who is a frequent panellist there – that I actually raised the matter with editor Rob Burley. Here’s the dialogue:

What do you think of that?

More concerning still were the efforts to mitigate the effect of Mr Burley’s choice – which was to play up the effect on Ms Soubry and play down that on Mr Jones – by members of the public. Here’s one such comment:

Owen Jones himself put that comment in its place, in a response to information from Channel 4 News reporter Michael Crick that – as with the BBC – attempted to excise the abuse of Mr Jones from the record:

Left-wing members of the public have made it clear that they are not going to accept this kind of misreporting from the mainstream media:

If you are confused as to the reason television news reporters have tried to play down the targeting of people who represent the Left by people who are for all intents and purposes fascists, I refer you to this perceptive comment by Mr Jones, that makes it clear that the mainstream media have legitimised it:

The attitudes we have seen are sickening: Right-wing MPs have shown they are happy to abuse others before TV cameras in the Palace of Westminster, while decrying the same behaviour against their own by members of the public who were filmed on mobile phones, as their cronies in the mass media do their best to make it seem that they are the victims – when in fact they have stoked the extreme attitudes that lead to such abuse, threatening behaviour and, ultimately, violence.

These are our elected representatives but if this is how they conduct themselves, they do not represent me. We must demand better.

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Lefty journo and Tory MP confronted by wall of gammon. Guess who gets Establishment support

For the record: Owen Jones, pursued by James Goddard – both recording the encounter on their mobile phones, while a policeman watches. The behaviour of these right-wingers is like that of cartoon villains, so I’ve cartoonised this scene.

Some of what follows is very ugly indeed.

The left-wing journalist Owen Jones, together with Conservative MP Anna Soubry and who knows how many others were targeted by right-wing pro-Brexit protesters outside Parliament yesterday (Monday, January 7).

They were wearing yellow vests because they have styled themselves after France’s gilets jaunes, protesters against rising fuel prices and taxes who blocked roads wearing yellow high-vis jackets on November 18 last year, sparking a pan-European movement.

Think about that for a moment. These anti-EU protesters were aping people who are citizens of the very bloc they hate. That should give you an inkling as to their twisted thinking. But it gets worse.

Here’s Mr Jones’s tweeted video clip of his treatment at their hands:

I’ll be honest – sometimes I disagree with Mr Jones’s opinions, but always in the most cordial way and always with reason. Calling him a “tampon”, a “traitor”, and a writer of “fake news” is neither cordial nor reasonable. And take note of the way the chief bully in the crowd called Mr Jones a bully; it’s a classic tactic, accusing a victim of one’s own behaviour.

The principle antagonist in the clip appears to be one James Goddard. You can witness more of his behaviour here:

It seems astonishing that this man retained his liberty after the behaviour in the clip tweeted by Another Angry Voice. If you’ve seen any of the many reality documentaries showing the police on duty, you’ll know that they usually issue a stern warning to members of the public who start exhibiting loud and threatening behaviour to desist, and arrest them if they don’t comply. The racist claim that the officer in the clip isn’t even British would be a chargeable offence, I believe.

There may be a reason he hasn’t been arrested, but it isn’t a very good one. We’ll come to it shortly.

(If I may interject a note of personal pride here, I seem to recall coining the term “Brextremist” on This Site. I am delighted to see that it has fallen into general usage.)

In a further tweet, Mr Jones added: “By the way, the things they’re yelling at me – traitor, terrorism supporter – are all legitimised by the right wing press and politicians. If anything happens to one of us on the left at the hands of these fascists, they will share the blame. Hope that’s clear.”

There’s just one issue with that comment, as Hazel Nolan makes clear:

Have we become so normalised to right-wing rhetoric that this loathsome language, and the behaviour it encourages, is now deemed normal?

The experience of Anna Soubry would suggest otherwise.

The Remain-supporting Tory ventured outside the Palace of Westminster to give an interview on College Green, only to be interrupted by chants of “Soubry is a Nazi”:

Afterwards, Twitter commentator Femi found her surrounded by the same people who had accosted Mr Jones:

Note the way they mistook him for Labour MP David Lammy. Was it because they are both of Afro-Caribbean descent?

Mr Goddard, it seems, followed up these incidents by crowing about them on the social media:

The displays against Ms Soubry and Mr Jones, attracted widespread denunciation from both members of the public and the political classes.

Aislinn M-D, a doctor, tweeted: “Now im no fan of Soubry but the accusation of being a ‘Nazi’ seems to be one of the most flippantly overused and totally disconnected insult from reality. It disgracefully undermines what the Nazis actually did and makes those using it demonstrate total ignorance of history.”

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon stated, “This is appalling – as is footage today of Owen Jones facing a similar experience. We all have a duty to stand against this kind of behaviour. Robust debate is the hallmark of any democracy – but so too is decency, civility and respect for those holding different opinions.”

So why weren’t the perpetrators arrested?

“Citizen of Everywhere”, responding to a similar question from the Mail opinion hack Dan Hodges (with whom, for once, I found myself in agreement), suggested: “They’re trying to provoke an overreaction from the police so they can paint themselves as victims fighting the good fight against an oppressive regime. It’s usually better to mock them than arrest them, but I agree that changes when they cross the line into individual harassment.”

Nick Church also suggested: “The MPs who have legitimized this level of racism and xenophobia and allowed it to become mainstream should be utterly ashamed.”

Sadly, it seems Parliamentarians were only interested in protecting their own when the issue was raised as a point of order in the House of Commons.

Tory Nick Boles asked Speaker John Bercow, “Will you consult the Serjeant at Arms to see whether the Metropolitan police are doing everything they can to protect the public’s right to protest but also to ensure that Members are able to go about their business in total safety?”

Here’s the answer: “The House authorities are not technically responsible for the safety of Members off the estate—that is and remains a matter for the Metropolitan police—but naturally, I take this issue very seriously and so, I am sure, do the police, who have been made well aware of our concerns.

“Reflecting and reinforcing what the hon. Gentleman said about peaceful protest, let me say this. Peaceful protest is a vital democratic freedom, but so is the right of elected Members to go about their business without being threatened or abused, and that includes access to and from the media stands in Abingdon Green. I say no more than that I am concerned at this stage about what seems to be a pattern of protests targeted in particular—I do not say exclusively—at women. Female Members and, I am advised, in a number of cases, female journalists, have been subjected to aggressive protest and what many would regard as harassment.”

It took a further intervention from Labour MP Pat McFadden, asking Mr Bercow “to do everything possible to ensure that journalists and broadcasters can do their job and that Members of this House are free to speak their minds” before the Speaker included all members of the press, including Mr Jones, in his considerations.

Following on from this exchange, more than 50 MPs wrote to Metropolitan police commissioner Cressida Dick, demanding stronger action to protect people who work in Westminster from aggressive far-right protesters.

The letter stated: “After months of peaceful and calm protests by groups representing a range of political views on Brexit, an ugly element of individuals with strong far right and extreme right connections – which your officers are well aware of – have increasingly engaged in intimidatory and potentially criminal acts targeting Members of Parliament, journalists, activists and members of the public.

“We understand there are ongoing investigations but there appears to be an ongoing lack of coordination in the response from the police and appropriate authorities including with Westminster borough policing – and despite clear assurances this would be dealt with following incidents before Christmas – there have been a number of further serious and well publicised incidents today.

“It is… utterly unacceptable for members of parliament, journalists, activists and members of the public to be subject to abuse, intimidation and threatening behaviour and indeed potentially serious offences while they go about their work.”

Would they have taken this step if only Mr Jones had been targeted? I have doubts about that.

He is a divisive figure, and often cannot count on other members of the media for support in matters such as this. Consider his clash with BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Tony Livesay. Mr Jones tweeted: “I went on earlier and the presenter said that by describing these fascists as “knuckle-dragging Tommy Robinson supporters” I was comparable to them. This is what we are dealing with in the British media.”

Mr Livesay responded: “Did I equate it @OwenJones84 ? Or did I say some people might say you’re not elevating the debate.”

In return, Mr Jones stated: “There is no debate to be elevated with fascists screaming abuse. This is beyond a joke.”

It is. I had intended to present an example of the abuse tweeted to Mr Jones by someone using the handle “MidNightLion1”, threatening extreme violence. It has been deleted, but it read: “You will get smashed one day Owen. Someone will beat the life out of you and it will be brilliant to see.”

Mr Jones responded: “Whatever happens to me, we crushed fascism before and we’ll crush fascism all over again.”

“Whatever happens to me”? Nobody should have to contemplate the possibility of serious harm coming to them, simply for expressing opinions – which, in contrast with those of the so-called yellow vest protesters, do not threaten harm to anybody.

As Grace Petrie tweeted: “It is gravely strange that not three years ago an MP was murdered in an act of far-right terrorism and it had no meaningful effect on this country’s discourse.”

That MP was Jo Cox. Her widower Brendan added: “The problem isn’t (just) extremists like this but mainstream commentators who spur them on with talk of traitors, enemies & betrayal. We should be able to debate difficult issues without making out the other side is evil.”

I hope I am not overstepping the mark if I include politicians among the “mainstream commentators who spur them on”, because, as “Red ’til I’m Dead” points out…

Yet when they start threatening people, the Establishment ranks rally around the Tory MP, while the lefty journalist is left to contemplate the possibility of serious physical harm.

Does that seem acceptable to you?

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Dorries and Jones are wrong – a breakaway party of Labour ‘moderates’ won’t change anything

Nadine Dorries: Wrong.

This is fun – Nadine Dorries and Owen Jones being completely mistaken on Jeremy Vine’s new TV show:

They are wrong because the so-called Labour ‘moderates’ (in reality far right-wing MPs who joined the Labour Party out of opportunism during the Blair-Brown years) have besmirched their names far too much to do any damage to the party as a whole if they split away.

The ‘no confidence’ votes against Joan Ryan and Gavin Shuker are evidence of this. Those MPs will not be allowed to stand for Labour in the future and if they stand as independents – or even as part of a breakaway attempt at forming a party, like the SDP in the 1980s – they will sink without a trace.

The voting public can’t stand them.

But they are running out of choices. Labour members will not accept vipers in their midst and will remove them as soon as possible.

They could pin their hopes on the Conservatives calling another ‘snap’ general election that takes away the opportunity for Labour members to choose their own candidates – but it is unlikely the membership will put up with that fudge a second time in less than two years.

So they find themselves with their backs to the metaphorical wall.

It won’t be any surprise to me if they sink without a trace.

But it will be fun to see Ms Dorries (and to a certain extent, Mr Jones) react when that happens.

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The danger of idle words: Willsman receives death threat after opponents’ anti-Semitism lie

This should be a matter of serious concern to everybody with an interest in free speech and democracy.

The faked-up claims of anti-Semitism against Peter Willsman have led to him receiving death threats.

Don’t forget that This Writer has been falsely accused of anti-Semitism. I have to raise money to take my accusers to court. Please help by visiting my JustGiving page and pledging a contribution.

I would like to hear how Mr Willsman’s accusers justify what they have done, in the light of this threat.

What does Marie van der Zyl, president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, have to say for herself?

How about Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle, who published the vile allegations without paying a scrap of attention to proper journalistic procedures like fact-checking?

Come to that, the recording was said to have been made by a member of Labour’s National Executive Committee who ‘phoned in’ their participation. How does this person feel about having possibly endangered Mr Willsman’s life for a lie?

Karen Pollock, chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust? How does a person whose career is about educating people against behaviour that leads to mass murder feel about her own involvement in the potential endangerment of a single life?

And what about Labour MPs Tom Watson and Luciana Berger, who also passed censorious opinions? They are both right-wingers while Mr Willsman is a lefty – is retaking control of the party so important to them that they are willing to run a risk to life and limb?

Even fellow lefty Owen Jones has questions to answer, having accepted the allegation without question and then passing a prejudicial opinion about it on Twitter.

Careless talk still costs lives. The murder of Labour MP Jo Cox is still a recent memory, yet these ambitious political operators are perfectly happy to risk repeating that tragedy. They must be made to answer for their words.

Labour National Executive Committee (NEC) member Peter Willsman was at the centre of controversy after a recording of his comments during an NEC meeting was leaked to the media.

The comments were presented as antisemitic, but a proper examination of what was actually said, rather than the framing by media and ‘centrist’ MPs, showed that while crass they were not racist.

Such facts appear not to have troubled some, however – as Willsman has today received a death threat as a recorded message on his voicemail, saying:

You racist c**t. We know where you are. We’re coming to get you and spread your blood all over the pavement.

It’s to be hoped that this is a sick attempt to frighten, but the incident lays out very clearly the risks involved when one faction targets an opponent for political gain.

Source: Willsman receiving death threats after misrepresented NEC comments | The SKWAWKBOX

Visit our JustGiving page to help Vox Political’s Mike Sivier fight anti-Semitism libels in court


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After Adonis: Never mind the naysayers – we can still stop Brexit

This Writer was alarmed to read posts on Twitter by Owen Jones, attacking Lord Adonis’s comments on Theresa May’s Brexit because Lord Adonis is one of the most privileged citizens of the United Kingdom.

Brexit will affect us all, of course. Some of the most privileged citizens of the UK will benefit hugely; most of the least privileged will suffer terribly.

From my point of view, as a member of the privileged class, it was honourable of Lord Adonis to take a stand against Brexit.

Mr Jones’s argument, that Lord Adonis was unlikely to sway the opinion of the majority because he does not represent them in his social position or lifestyle, won’t wash with me because it’s not about that. It’s about the effect on all of us.

That being said, it would be an easy label for Brextremists to apply, in order to sway the gullible. And we know that ‘Leave’ won by influencing the gullible.

So how do we move forward?

Mr Jones seems determined that the Remain cause needs a figurehead. He’s right that Lord Adonis isn’t it – but for the wrong reasons. For one, Lord Adonis hasn’t asked to be one.

Looking at the article Mr Jones has written on the subject, he names several other high-profile people who have spoken up in the Remain cause, and dismissed them for varying reasons.

Tony Blair is “one of the most unpopular individuals — let alone politicians — in Britain, partly because of the small matter of a war sold on a false pretext which ended up an even worse calamity that many of those who opposed it predicted, and who then got paid millions to work for murdering torturing dictators”.

Nick Clegg, “by undermining faith in democracy and implementing austerity, helped pave the way to Brexit… The messenger does matter in politics, whether you like that fact or not, and no, Clegg is not going to achieve anything other than reinforce the negative image the Remain cause has”. That would be a negative image among Leave supporters, one supposes.

Mr Jones neglects the most important reason of all, despite it being the main pillar of his opposition to Lord Adonis: They represent the 1% – not the vast majority of the people.

Because of that, none of the politicians who might be candidates to lead a revived Remain campaign can possibly hold our trust. Brexit will benefit the few, not the many, and they are members of the few.

Look at all the prominent Brexiters: Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, Theresa May, those three Tory MPs who head up the 1922 committee, and any of the Labour MPs who want out of the EU – one per centers, all of them, This Writer is willing to bet. It’s in their job description.

Gina Miller, the woman who challenged the government over Brexit in the courts, is out for the same reason. She is a member of the moneyed class, not a woman of the people.

For a Remain argument to be persuasive – by Mr Jones’s own criteria – it needs a spokesperson who represents us. And there’s a real problem with that.

If there is such a person to be found among the working people, or even the unemployed, of the United Kingdom, then they simply cannot spare the time to go off campaigning. Their employer wouldn’t let them go; the DWP would sanction them.

Any serious campaign to stop Brexit would need to find such a person and then provide an incentive for them to hit the road, campaigning – a financial incentive. And that opens them up to criticisms about doing it for mercenary reasons. To be convincing to a Brextremist, such a person would have to starve for their belief.

If an answer can be found to this, we can move on to some of Mr Jones’s ideas that are actually worth repeating:

“I would tour Leave areas as part of a new grassroots national campaign, emphasising my background, that I know what hardship and insecurity is like from my own lived experience, and directly appeal to Leave supporters.”

To that, I would add an admission that both the Leave and Remain campaign told untruths. The referendum was intended to be advisory, but the leaflet put out by the Conservative government promised flat that the result would be honoured. It perverted the intention. That was wrong.

Obviously, Leave campaigners splattered a lie about the UK giving £350 million a week to the EU all over the side of a bus and persuaded far too many people that this nonexistent money could be given to the National Health Service instead, if only they voted ‘Leave’.

There was a huge campaign to pretend that “unelected bureaucrats” in the EU force their laws on the UK; in fact, all EU laws must be ratified by the governments of member states. That’s why there has been such a huge battle between the UK and the EU over whether prisoners should have the vote. Remember that?

The list is probably very long; any competent Remain campaign would have to address everything on it, to explain why Remain failed in the first place.

And of course there is the issue of illegal interference in the referendum, that should – in This Writer’s opinion – render that vote null and void.

So, come on. It’s not right to run down Lord Adonis for doing what he could to point out that Brexit is wrong for the United Kingdom – not without having something better to offer instead.

It’s time for Remain to offer something better. Let’s have it, before Brexit becomes irreversible (and no, Brextremists, that hasn’t happened yet).


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Remember the ESA deaths when you are voting

Zdwpdeaths

The Disability News Service has reported Vox Political‘s victory over the DWP, whose officers have less than a month to report the total number of deaths involving people claiming Employment and Support Allowance between November 2011 and May 2014.

The article quotes John McArdle, co-founder of campaigning organisation Black Triangle, who said the updated statistics would be vital: “When the truth comes out about the devastation that this has caused, the whole of society will be absolutely appalled.”

Rick Burgess, co-founder of New Approach, which campaigns to scrap the fitness for work test, said: “People should know the cost of policies they are voting upon, especially when they are causing mass deaths.”

There is much more, and you are encouraged to visit the Disability News Service‘s website to read the full article.

If the Conservative Party forms the next government, the deaths will undoubtedly continue – no matter what the figures prove to be, or the public response to them.

Can you bear to have that on your conscience?

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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