Tag Archives: radio

Distraction tactics: why pay attention to all this right-wing fiddling while your country burns?

Jeremy Corbyn: it’s nice that a Twitter poll has rated him the best prime minister the UK never had, but the PM that we’ve got is turning the UK into a major disaster and this stuff is nothing more than an attempt to distract you. Did it work?

We all know bank holiday Mondays are where the news goes to die but August 2020 was particularly bad.

Judging by Twitter, the event that caught everybody’s imagination was a poll by right-wing Times Radio that resulted in a nobody presenter – This Writer has never heard of him – having to declare that Jeremy Corbyn is the best prime minister the UK never had.

(It means he would have been a better choice, not only than Boris Johnson or Theresa May, but better than many others as well – according to those who took part in the poll.)

Certain right-whingers immediately took it upon themselves to alleged – without any factual basis – that Corbynista Twitter users had ganged up to rig the poll.

Who cares?

It doesn’t matter. We didn’t get Corbyn. We got Theresa May in 2017 and Boris Johnson now – partly because Labour apparatchiks conspired to bugger up Corbyn’s campaigns on one or both occasions, if you believe a certain report (I do).

And it diverts attention from the failures of the government we have – especially at a time when Parliament is about to resume sitting after the summer recess.

The Guardian‘s editorial has identified a few of the political crises from which the poll has diverted our attention. For example:

Rishi Sunak is determined to end his Job Retention Scheme – the furlough to you and me – at the end of October, triggering a huge wave of unemployment. That’s right, even more people are about to learn what Universal Credit is all about – and they’re not going to like it.

He’s facing an annual national deficit that will have grown to twice the amount faced by Gordon Brown’s Labour government during the so-called “great recession” of 2008 or thereabouts. His party made a lot of mileage out of criticising Labour’s handling of that recession, slithering back into office by claiming it would end deficit spending and cut the national debt as well (instead the Tories more than doubled the debt to £2 trillion).

And in November Sunak has to produce a budget that will boost the economy and return the national finances to some semblance of balance (fat chance! He’s already facing a backbench rebellion on his mooted plans for tax rises).

Nobody’s going back to work because they don’t trust the government’s proclamations that it is safe from Covid-19. Nobody is likely to go back to universities for the same reason. The only people likely to want to go back to school are the kids – and that’s because they’re probably a bit bored by now and want to see their buddies again.

The Johnson government’s determination to push through Brexit as planned by December 31 means the party that pledged to end the scourge of “red tape” is more likely to throttle us with it, as businesses have to deal with an avalanche of pointless bureaucracy.

These are all problems that the Tories have created for the rest of us, either by incompetence or by design, since they first came back into power in 2010 – and most particularly since Boris Johnson became prime minister last year.

You need to be thinking about that, but instead you’re being seduced into thinking about a dopey Twitter poll that doesn’t mean anything at all.

You’re watching the right-wingers fiddling around while your country burns around you.

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Bad Times-ing: new radio channel announces Windrush Home Secretary will host show – in the middle of George Floyd racism riots

Amber Rudd: what a symbol of white privilege.

How tactless. How Murdoch.

Times Radio is a Rupert Murdoch venture – it’s run by his firm News UK – and will start broadcasting on June 29. So the organisation put out a press release today (June 2) announcing its initial line-up.

Fair enough? Not really.

You see, among the presenters is Amber Rudd, the former Tory Home Secretary who had to quit her job over her appallingly bad handling of the racist Windrush scandal.

She was the one who misled Parliament over a memo showing that the Home Office had a target number of people to deport from the UK, if you remember.

Now, after a week of violence in the United States over the killing by police of unarmed George Floyd, on the same day the Conservative governent here in the UK refused to release a report on the way black and minority ethnic people have been disproportionately harmed in the Covid-19 crisis… Times Radio announces this danger to black people will be hosting a happy-go-lucky radio talk show.

The message is clear: This privileged white woman persecuted vulnerable black people so we’re rewarding her.

The channel’s press release refers to “former Conservative Home Secretary Amber Rudd with her journalist daughter Flora Gill, talking about their different takes on the world, picking up on their popular social media interactions”.

And it quotes Rudd as saying: “It will be a great platform for me to put Flora in her place.” Will she be deporting her daughter, then?

If this Murdoch channel wanted to throw away listeners, it could not have done a better job than by starting with this. The reaction on social media has been poisonous:

https://twitter.com/JosieLong/status/1267774510339629058

Source: News UK announces Times Radio launch date: new national DAB station begins broadcasting on Monday 29th June | News UK

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Terrified Tories are running from media scrutiny

If the people of Peterborough return a Conservative to Parliament after this display, I would be very surprised.

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Arch-Brexiteer Nigel Farage is pranked on-air during radio show

This is for everybody who’s sick and tired of the fuss over Brexit:

I’m not saying you have to suffer the same fate as the caller claimed, in order to support Brexit – but I have no doubt at all that many people across the country can sympathise with the sentiment.

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Theresa May’s ‘crying wolf’ lie is exposed, and it’s only a matter of time until the same happens with Brexit

Theresa May: Liar liar.

It’s hard to believe someone who’s trying so hard to present herself as trustworthy over Brexit when she can’t even come clean on a matter which has video proof.

Theresa May trolled off to LBC radio on November 16, where she expected to get an easy time over her Brexit deal from Nick Ferrari. Readers of This Site will remember him from the time he got his knickers properly knotted interviewing me about the fake “anti-Semitism” claims against me, back in February.

Instead, she found herself lying about an incident in which she accused the police of “crying wolf”.

See for yourself:

I wrote about this incident myself, back in 2015.

In a speech to the Police Federation, she addressed claims that her decision to slash the number of officers nationally (by more than 20,000 so far) would mean they would no longer be able to do their job properly. Events since then have proved that their concerns were well-founded.

But Mrs May, who was Home Secretary at the time, accused officers of “scaremongering”.

She said: “This crying wolf has got to stop.”

Now let’s get back to Brexit.

Based on what she told the police then, and events since, it seems entirely appropriate to ask what her words are worth.

She wants you to trust her with her plan to take us all out of the European.

All things considered, do you?

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This Tory’s lie shows exactly why their Brexit deal must be rejected

Lying Tory: Rory Stewart.

Tory blabbermouth Rory Stewart was caught in a blatant lie on the radio last week.

He claimed Theresa May’s Brexit deal had the support of 80 per cent of the British people.

This is a nonsense; no research has been carried out and it seems unlikely that any deal would carry such overwhelming support when only half of those who voted in the 2016 EU referendum supported Brexit in any way at all (all right, pedants – slightly more than half).

Hear it for yourself:

As a government minister, the matter is worse than a mistake or a slip of the tongue.

Mr Stewart broke the ministerial code on the use of statistics, and one of the “seven principles of public life” – honesty; it simply requires ministers to be truthful.

His blunder – on the day Theresa May was pleading with Parliament to trust her with Brexit – was catastrophic as it showed in no uncertain terms that nobody in the Conservative government can be trusted even to get their facts right, let alone strike a deal to leave the EU that will be good for the people of the UK:

There’s too much of this going on.

Liars whose faces fit are getting to do anything they like when they should be expelled from public office and, in extreme cases, prosecuted and imprisoned.

Meanwhile, those who aren’t members of the Westminster clique are vilified and libelled for presenting genuine facts.

When will this corruption be removed?

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Anti-Semitism debate: ‘The political right have sunk us into the Abyss’

The late Hajo Meyer – and his most well-documented words.

Here’s an excellent thread on the anti-Semitism debate and the mass attempt to trash the reputation of a deceased Jewish Holocaust survivor who was at Auschwitz, Hajo Meyer.

It’s written by the pseudonymous Kanjin Tor, who has long been a voice of reason on the social media.

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320580235583494

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320582919938048

https://twitter.com/xugla/status/1025320585671262209

In fact, 17 million human beings were exterminated in the Nazi Holocaust – six million of them Jewish.

The attack on Hajo Meyer by trash-talking media personalities (if they can be dignified with the title) diminishes not only what happened to the Jews, but belittles the persecution that befell all the groups that the Nazis victimised.

“Anti-Semitism” is just the first offence of which they should be accused. They deserve to be tarred and feathered.

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James O’Brien should lose his job over anti-Semitic description of Holocaust survivor

James O’Brien (left) questioned the credentials of a deceased Jewish Holocaust survivor in order to make a specious political point about Jeremy Corbyn (right).

I used to think LBC radio host James O’Brien was one of the good guys but his disrespect for a deceased Jewish survivor of the Nazi Holocaust is utterly unacceptable.

O’Brien was referring to the 2010 Holocaust Memorial Day event at which Hajo Meyer, a Jewish Holocaust victim who survived the Auschwitz concentration camp, attacked Israeli government behaviour towards Gaza, comparing it with that of the Nazis.

It seems the presenter considered such a comparison, by somebody who should know, to be unacceptable and he claimed Mr Meyer made his speech behind the “camouflage” of being a Holocaust survivor.

How utterly despicable.

For O’Brien to attack a man who is not only dead, and therefore unable to respond, is bad enough.

But to diminish the suffering Mr Meyer endured in life by claiming he was under “camouflage” is beyond the pale.

It is also, quite clearly, anti-Semitic: Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of Nazi Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).

Has Mr O’Brien ever been forced to endure persecution because of his race, religion, skin colour, ethnic group or any other such distinguishing feature?

Has he ever been forced into a concentration camp, worked like an animal and starved nearly to death?

Has he ever had to live in fear of being murdered alongside a multitude of people like him?

No. He hasn’t.

But he took it on himself to insult the memory of a man who had, in order to score a cheap political point against Jeremy Corbyn, who has apologised for appearing at the event in which Mr Meyer made his speech, even though he was not responsible for its content.

And what did Mr O’Brien do, when he was challenged over his behaviour by a listener? Did he apologise?

Not a bit of it. See for yourself:

James said: “Get lost, seriously. You honestly think when you’ve got the leader of the Labour Party sharing a platform with people who compare Jews to Nazis, you think my vocabulary is the most interesting and important element of this story?

“You, pal, are the problem.You’re the reason why this country is on its knees. You are the reason why the nastiest, most vindictive Tory administration we’ve seen in decades is still hanging on to power.

“You are the reason why, because you’ve got a party led by a man who has the moral integrity of a Kit Kat and yet somehow has managed to persuade significant swathes of decent people that he speaks for decency.

“No he doesn’t, he’s a disgrace. And if the Labour Party was led by anybody else it would be 20 points ahead in the polls.”

Can you see any solid evidence to support his vile claims about Mr Meyer in that vicious rant?

Neither can I.

All I can see are ad hominem attacks and insults on a listener who is perfectly entitled to their opinion, and on the leader of the Labour Party.

This is behaviour that falls well below the standard expected of people in public life.

O’Brien should resign. Or he should be sacked.

You can contact LBC to complain here.

Source: James O’Brien’s Passionate Response When Listener Denies Labour Anti-Semitism – LBC

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Nick Ferrari Panics When Mike Not Holocaust Denier, Demands Respect | Beastrabban\’s Weblog

I know the Beast is my brother, but it’s always good to get another person’s perspective on something you’ve been in.

The point that Nick Ferrari had pre-judged me as a Holocaust denier is a good one. Like the newspapers that claimed the same of me, he clearly hadn’t done his homework.

That’s quite surprising, as I had been contacted by his producer via Twitter on Sunday, where I had been spending most of the day defending myself. This gentleman must have seen what I was saying and therefore he must have known what I was likely to say – don’t you think?

Here are a few of the Beast’s observations. Visit his site for the rest.

Mike spoke calmly and politely throughout. But what he said clearly rattled Ferrari, who obviously neither expected it nor wanted it.

In fact, it’s clear that Ferrari had already decided that Mike was guilty. He introduced Mike as ‘Mike Sivier, the Holocaust denier’. That should have stopped the conversation right there, as Mike could have jumped in immediately and stated very firmly that he isn’t. Mike says on his account that several times at the beginning of the programme he said something wasn’t true, but this was either drowned out or not broadcast.

Ferrari asked him how many Jews he thought died in the Holocaust. Mike replied ‘Six million’. A slight pause from Ferrari, presumably while the hack tried to get his head round the fact that Mike wasn’t the Holocaust denier he’d introduced him as, and he’d given him the opportunity to show that he wasn’t.

[Ferrari would] ask a question, and then go on to ask another one, talking over Mike. Mike was giving him very full, comprehensive answers, and Ferrari clearly didn’t like it. G. Milward, one of the great commenters on Mike’s site, noticed this, and compared it to the tactic of Dimblebore on Question Time. When Mike carried on speaking, answering the question he’d first been asked, Ferrari got flustered and said that Mike ‘should respect him, as I’ve only got a few minutes’. I heard no disrespect in anything Mike said. He did not insult Ferrari, condescend to him or sneer at him. He just carried on politely putting his point across. But this was obviously too much for the hack’s fragile ego, and so Ferrari panicked.

it’s very clear that Ferrari was expecting Mike to be a real anti-Semite and Holocaust denier. That was how he introduced Mike, and it shows that he’d already made up his mind from the very start. Then Mike came on to show comprehensively that he wasn’t. I think Ferrari really wanted to hold a media show trial, in which he could show up this Corbynite Nazi, for the benefit of his baying right-wing audience.

It looks to me like he was frightened when he found out that Mike wasn’t a Nazi, and that he had just given him a platform on his show to prove that he wasn’t. Hence the panicked demands for ‘respect’. Like a petulant teenager having a row with their parents.

In fact, Mike has said that far from deliberately trying to ‘dis’ Ferrari, the simple fact was that he couldn’t hear him. Mike came down with a cold, and all he could hear of Ferrari was a low rumble. It was only listening to the clip that he was fully aware of the hatchet job Ferrari had tried on him.

Source: Nick Ferrari Panics When Mike Not Holocaust Denier, Demands Respect | Beastrabban\’s Weblog


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Did I have a ‘fiery row’ with LBC’s Nick Ferrari? I could hardly hear a word he said

Was it that bad-tempered an exchange?

I don’t remember much of it, to be honest. I had a list of things I wanted to mention:

  • That I’m not a Holocaust denier, obviously. The first I knew of this was when I bought the Sunday Times yesterday (February 4) and saw the headline. “Hang on – is that me?”
  • That the accusation comes from a comment in an article from 2016, that was off-topic – meaning the person making it was trying to entrap me into some kind of anti-Semitic remark not related to the subject under discussion.
  • That the claim that I said I “don’t know” whether the Holocaust happened was a mangling of my response to that comment. I had been asked why the SWP had referred to “thousands” instead of “millions” of deaths in a pamphlet, and why it had not mentioned Jews at all. I didn’t know the answers to any of those questions because I’m not in the SWP; it’s not my party.
  • That the claim that I said Tony Blair had been influenced by a “Jewish cabal” was a similar mangling of my words. I had been presented it as a claim by Tam Dalyell (I noticed Mr Ferrari trying to suggest I shouldn’t mention other people, which shows his understanding of the context!) and replied that anybody hearing such a claim without evidence might have cause to be concerned. But of course, the person making the claim should produce evidence to back up the claim. Without that, it is meaningless.
  • I also wanted to acknowledge something put to me on Twitter yesterday, that the language used is an anti-Semitic trope, as they’re described. That’s as may be, but that was the language that was put to me, and I notice nobody has taken the commenter to task. If I had changed the words, I would have been changing the meaning of what was being put to me, and that would not have been acceptable.
  • I wanted to mention my defence of Ken Livingstone, and the fact that he was unfairly attacked in 2016 when he discussed anti-Semitism claims. Note that I don’t defend his 2017 comments as I have not seen evidence to support them.
  • I wanted to take issue with Labour’s dispute resolution system, which squeezes defendants out of their own cases and makes it almost impossible to defend against a negative report from party officers.
  • And I wanted to point out that the attack on me is not only libel but an act of violence, intended to persuade people that I can’t be trused and put me off reading This Site, thereby cutting off an important source of income and impoverishing me.

How well did I do? I’m afraid you’ll have to visit the LBC page and listen to the interview to find out. I did, and was surprised to hear some of Nick Ferrari’s comments for the first time. He must have been trying to interrupt me but I couldn’t hear him very well.

Notice that my voice is removed from the beginning of the clip, when Mr Ferrari is listing things I’m supposed to have said. For the authentic experience, insert my voice saying, “No I didn’t!” after every assertion – you can hear my voice fading in after the third.

Oh, and a welcome by-product of the exchange seems to be that people are donating to the site. Gratitude goes out to everyone who has donated so far; if you haven’t, and want to, the “Donate” button is below the article text.

(When listening to the interview, please bear in mind that I’ve got quite a bad cold at the moment, so my voice sounds strange and you may hear me breathing in an odd way. Normally I have the voice of an angel, of course.)

Nick Ferrari was involved in a heated row with a Labour activist who had been accused of denying the Holocaust.

The Sunday Times reported that Mike Sivier was being re-admitted to the party, provided he attends a workshop about anti-Semitism.

However, during a testy exchange with Nick, Mr Sivier revealed he had turned down the option as he is innocent of the accusations against him.

However, the Labour activist did admit that the party has a problem with anti-Semitism.

Source: Nick Ferrari’s Fiery Row With Labour Activist Accused Of Holocaust Denial


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