Tag Archives: Tom

Hypocrisy of UK MPs sanctioned for criticising China human rights abuses

Hypocrite: Iain Duncan Smith oversaw the deaths of thousands of unemployed, sick and disabled people who were victimised by his ‘reforms’ to the UK’s benefit system. How dare he criticise another country for doing the same to its people?

Shame on the Tory MPs who are whining because China has sanctioned them for highlighting that country’s abuses of the Uighurs!

Yes, you read that right. Shame on them, because they are hypocrites.

They seem to think it is perfectly reasonable to claim moral superiority over the government of another country for abusing its citizens’ human rights, while turning a blind eye to the fact that they are doing exactly the same to the people of the UK.

Tory MPs Iain Duncan Smith, Nusrat Ghani, Tim Loughton, Neil O’Brien and Tom Tugendhat all merrily voted in support of the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill that will strip many of us of our human rights – and remove from all of us the right to protest in any meaningful way against further Tory atrocities against us.

Duncan Smith is well-known as an advocate of harm against his fellow UK citizens, having presided over the deaths of many thousands of benefit claimants – that occurred for no documented reason – under the cruel regime he imposed at the Department for Work and Pensions. But now he’s saying

Those of us who live free lives under the rule of law must speak for those who have no voice.

He was quite happy to deprive benefit claimants of their voices – and to look the other way when his policies deprived them of their lives. In their thousands, remember – not just one or two mistakes.

Attacking human rights abuses anywhere else in the world must be, for these people, an act of abominable hypocrisy.

Note also the typical reaction of the bully: these are people who sneered at us for protesting against the Police Bill and then went right ahead and voted to strip us of our rights – but when the shoe is on the other foot and they’re being singled out by China, suddenly they’re whining about how unfair it is.

Boris Johnson is, of course, the worst of the lot.

Despite being omitted from the list of UK MPs selected for sanction by China, he had the cheek to say

Freedom to speak out in opposition to abuse is fundamental and I stand firmly with them.

Fine words from the prime minister whose sickeningly draconian Police Bill strips his own people of that very freedom.

I do not wish to defend China. It’s treatment of the Uighurs is vile and should be opposed by all those of good faith. But these Tories are not opposing China in good faith. They’re trying to steal undeserved good publicity by attacking a country whose human rights abuses are – currently – worse than their own.

But it doesn’t work that way – or at least it shouldn’t.

Any attack on anybody’s rights as a human being is an attack against all of us – everywhere.

Johnson and his other little Tories might think they can take what moral high ground there is to be gained because their abuses aren’t quite as bad. But we know where that thinking leads.

The abuses become worse.

The number of people being oppressed grows.

The UK’s Tory government already fits every description of a fascist state that is worth reading. If you’re not feeling Johnson’s jackboot on your face yet, it’s just a matter of time.

So don’t waste any sympathy on these liars. They don’t deserve it.

Source: Uighurs: China bans UK MPs after abuse sanctions – BBC News

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Revolutionary political campaigner is resurrected for modern times

This Writer is a big fan of comic books – or graphic novels, if you prefer. They have an immediacy that mere words on paper (or screen) sometimes fails to evoke.

When it comes to political ideology, I’m surprised that comics haven’t been employed to get the points across more often before now.

So I think writer/artist Paul Fitzgerald’s bid for funding to support Tom Paine’s Bones – his graphic retelling of the story of the radical human rights and political reform advocate whose work inspired the American Revolution and the formation of a democratic United States – is well worth supporting.

Here’s a quick description of the man and his career:

Through his strong and vocal stances on human rights and political reform he became a key figure in the American Revolution. His pamphlet Common Sense, which advocated for independence and an egalitarian government for the Thirteen Colonies, became the most widely read pamphlet during the American Revolutionary War (1775 – 1783).

His work reached an international audience and Paine’s The Rights of Man, which defended the French Revolution, so infuriated locals in Didsbury and Deangate, in 1793 that they carried out mock trials and executions, burning effigies of Paine in the process.

Even after his death in 1809, Thomas Paine continued to be a thorn in the side of those in power. His bones were unearthed from his grave in America by the radical William Cobbett and carried to the outskirts of Manchester and Salford, just after the Peterloo massacre had occurred in 1819. Fearing the presence of Paine’s remains would foment rebellion amongst a populace still raw from the massacre, troops prevented Cobbett from entering with the bones.

That’s an influential man; his power extended beyond the grave.

Paul Fitzgerald, an artist from Hulme in Manchester also known as Polyp, has been busily working to take Tom Paine out of stuffy lectures on politics and philosophy and onto the illustrated novel page. You can see an example of his excellent work above.

He has launched a Kickstarter campaign for £15,000 to get the project published and I would urge you to help out if you can. Just click on the link and make your donation.

Hopefully this could become part of a series exploring the origins of modern political thinking.

Source: Breathing life back into Tom Paine’s bones – graphic novel aims to resurrect neglected political reformer – The Meteor

Tom Moore and David Clapson: outrageous disparity in the way Tories treat veterans

Found on Facebook:

“Incredible how differently Britain treats its veterans, depending on their circumstances,” says the caption.

No, it isn’t really incredible at all. It’s more Tory divisiveness. The difference here is that the difference between the two subjects is so marked.

Captain Sir Tom Moore was “one of us”. He had been living, retired, in relative comfort – a former Army officer who, seeing the plight of the National Health Service after years of Tory underfunding and the dismantling of its equipment to fight pandemic infections, literally stepped in to do his bit, raising £33 million in funds by walking laps of his back garden.

(And what happened to that cash, by the way? Did it pay for vital treatment or was it frittered away on crony contracts for Conservative chums?)

Former Lance Corporal David Clapson was “one of them”. After serving as a member of the Royal Signal Corps for two years in Belfast at the height of the “Troubles” in the 1970s and then spending 16 years working for BT, he gave up his career to become a carer, looking after his mother.

After she became too ill to stay at home, he started looking for work and claimed Jobseeker’s Allowance – making him a scrounger from the state in the eyes of the Department for Work and Pensions, run at the time by Tory Iain Duncan Smith.

So when he missed an appointment with a Job Centre advisor, the DWP axed his benefit, leaving him with no means of support.

He died soon after – not of starvation, but of diabetic ketoacidosis. Mr Clapson, who suffered from diabetes, had been unable to afford the electricity needed to keep his fridge working, meaning that he could not keep his insulin at the required temperature, rendering it unusable.

When his body was found, his assets totalled £3.44, six tea bags, a tin of soup and an out-of-date can of sardines. He had no food in his stomach at all.

Captain Sir Tom Moore was lionised as a hero. Lance Corporal David Clapson was treated like scum.

In terms of character, they seem to have been very much the same. Both obviously cared very much about the well-being of others and did what they could to help.

The only difference seems to be that the former, being “one of us”, was given every opportunity to make the impact he wanted, while the latter, being “one of them”, was denied even the means of survival.

It’s the Tory way. If you’re “one of us”, you get the best. If you’re “one of them”, you get nothing. Which are you?

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Sickening hypocrisy: Johnson’s tribute to Captain Sir Tom Moore

The late Captain Sir Tom Moore: a better man than Boris Johnson.

I didn’t take part in the national hysteria over Captain Tom Moore’s NHS fundraising, extraordinary though it was.

The health service had been put in an impossible position by the Conservative government of the day, and it seemed to me that this act of criminal negligence (it has cost more than 100,000 lives so far, no matter how you fiddle the numbers) was being compounded by unusual cruelty in forcing a 99-year-old man to do laps of his garden in order to make up the shortfall.

And what has been done with the £33 million that he raised, by the way? Does anybody know?

The event as a whole seemed to be nothing but a distraction from the abominable mess that Boris Johnson and his forerunners had created.

It strikes me as a tragic irony that Captain Sir Tom Moore should now have passed away having contracted the disease against which he had raised so much money to protect people.

And then Boris Johnson, the incompetent poser whose deliberate inaction put this centenarian ex-serviceman to so much more trouble for his country, had the nerve to record a video paying tribute to him.

If the prime monkey had admitted that it was due to his own failures that Captain Sir Tom had been put to so much trouble; if he had agreed that his government had been forced to rely on a solitary member of the social group most threatened by the pandemic because of his short-sighted selfishness, then he might have vindicated himself, if only slightly.

But he didn’t. He tried to use a great man’s death for his own gain.

That isn’t a tribute.

It’s an insult.

Source: Captain Sir Tom Moore: ‘National inspiration’ dies with Covid-19 – BBC News

#ToryScum: MP whose inquiry into Tory Islamophobia never happened accuses left-wingers of racism

Sajid Javid: not only has he made himself look stupid, he has reminded us all that his political party is full of racists and reignited public fury at #ToryScum.

Conservatives who tried to claim on Twitter that left-wingers are racists have fallen foul of the facts – again.

Sajid Javid is the principle offender in this case – to judge by the number of responses to him, although James Cleverly was also involved, making it his second offence within the same day, along with a few other now-familiar Tory faces.

They were all responding to this clip, from the Twitter account @OneRuleForThem:

According to Javid, Cleverly, Tom Tugendhat, and the instigator of the #ToryScum controversy Christopher Clarkson, that advert is racist. Can you find anything in it that refers to Sunak’s ethnic origin at all, let alone in a negative way?

Neither can I.

But Javid responded thus:

Classic DARVO: “Deny, Attack, Reverse Victim and Offender”

Javid is saying there’s nothing dodgy about Sunak (despite the evidence in the clip). He’s attacking “The Left” (not just @OneRuleForThem, I notice) with a claim that they are racist. And he’s painting Sunak as a victim of that racism rather than the shady character his own history suggests he is.

Javid was joined by Cleverly, as this response shows:

Notice “The Left really” appears in both Javid’s and Cleverly’s tweets – because they were taken from the same source material?

At least the tweets from Clarkson and Tugendhat used different words – although that wasn’t enough to save them from public scorn:

Tugendhat’s tweet earned him a response from the clip’s creator – that made him look the fool he is:

The simple fact is that this particular organisation didn’t make a video about Hammond because it didn’t exist when he was Chancellor. It joined Twitter last month.

So let’s get back to the reaction to Javid. Here are a few examples:

That’s right – Javid did extract a promise from all the other then-Conservative leadership candidates that there would be an inquiry into Islamophobia into the Tory Party.

Once Boris Johnson was installed as leader (and new prime minister), the (also) newly-installed Tory chairman backpedalled on that promise. What was his name? Oh yes…

James Cleverly.

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By-election talk is all about tactics. What happened to policies?

Labour’s Tom Davies: He’s got the policies; the Lib Dems and Tories just have hot air.

Here in the centre of UK politics – Brecon and Radnorshire to the rest of you – all the talk is about the forthcoming by-election that we have just learned with be held on August 1.

But all the talk, it seems, is about tactical voting. Nobody wants to talk about policies!

Even Labour’s Tom Davies was induced to comment on the tactics of the constituency when he was quoted in the local rag (and my former employer) The Brecon and Radnor Express this week.

Commenting on the Liberal Democrat habit of positioning themselves as the only effective challengers to the Conservatives, and of demanding that Labour supporters lend their votes to them in order to defeat the Tories, he said: “I think they are reliant on our voters.

“But voting for the Lib Dems simply to try and keep the Tories from getting the seat doesn’t work. It has been proven not to have worked at the last two elections and in 2010 people voted Lib Dem to keep the Tories out and they made a pact and went into coalition with each other.”

This is true. Labour has been gaining ground steadily – across the constituency – since the great Lib Dem betrayal of 2010, and those who continued to vote tactically for the Liberal Democrats in 2015 and 2017 – only to see them lose to the Tory – are still stung by the experiences.

And the pain may be all the greater because Labour has policies that the majority of British people – let alone those in Brecon and Radnorshire – support.

Polling by the Tory-owned company YouGov in January this year has shown majority support for a large number of headline Labour policies – along with an admission that widespread support in foreign countries for the same plans means these are not far-left whimsy but mainstream political thinking.

A vote for Labour, therefore, would be a vote to:

  • Ensure that at least 60 per cent of the UK’s heat and electricity will come from low-carbon or renewable sources by 2030 (polling suggests this was supported by 79 per cent of the electorate);
  • Cap rents at the rate of inflation (74 per cent);
  • Increase income tax for the top five per cent of earners (68 per cent);
  • Require businesses to reserve a proportion of seats on their boards for workers (63 per cent);
  • Re-nationalise the railways (60 per cent);
  • Re-nationalise utility companies like the energy and water firms (57 per cent);
  • Provide free university tuition for all students (55 per cent);
  • Prevent the UK from participating in military interventions in other countries (52 per cent).

Those are pretty good policies!

Meanwhile, the Tories and Liberal Democrats are squabbling over who defaced their office frontages with yellow “B*ll*cks to Brexit” and “B*ll*cks to Boris” stickers. The Tory office also had an image of male genitalia painted onto the door and an EU flag hung from the handle.

Peter Weavers, chair of the constituency’s Conservative Association, tweeted: “@LibDems in Brecon and Radnorshire launch by election campaign by vandalising Conservative Association office in Brecon with ‘B******s to Brexit’ stickers – and genitalia drawings! Is that the level of intellect that deserves a vote? The people of B & R deserve respect.”

He was later forced to climb down, saying he did not mean to suggest the Liberal Democrat Party was directly involved.

Clearly, the Tories and Lib Dems are going to be a comedy gift – but if you want serious politics, it’s got to be Labour.

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