Tag Archives: youth

Supporters of the Israeli government: did you know you also support this? [DISTRESSING CONTENT]

The following speaks for itself.

Supporters of the current government of Israel also support the murder of children.

No matter whether the Palestinian youth who was killed had committed any crime of his own – and there’s no proof shown here – he should have received medical attention but was instead shot and allowed to bleed to death.

If that is the culture of Israel, then Israel is barbaric.


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Hey, kids! Oldies in suits just made everything you want more expensive!

Rishi Sunak: the richest man in the UK is the UK’s prime minister. He isn’t affected by inflation or interest rate rises – but he, his government, the Bank of England and businesses are all determined to make sure that you are. How long are you going to sit there and let them mess with you, because you’re “not interested in politics”?

Now do you get why politics should matter to you?

Today (June 21, 2023), we’re all being told that inflation has remained high despite promises from the rich old folk in suits that it would plummet down to more manageable levels.

The reason for this is being touted as high food prices, according to mainstream news outlets like the BBC (UK inflation shock as food costs keep cost of living high) – but this isn’t true. The real reasons are corporate greed and Brexit.

(I know it doesn’t help that the mainstream media keep misleading you. Their job is to distract you away from what’s really happening, of course.)

So the utility firms (energy and water) and the supermarkets are fleecing you by charging whatever they want for goods that they’re actually buying far more cheaply, and this is offsetting the increased costs of importing goods that was caused by Brexit (and the war in Ukraine, although that is a secondary issue now).

The response from the government and the Bank of England is to make everything even more expensive by increasing the cost of money. If you don’t understand how they do this, it’s by raising interest rates on borrowing.

Businesses borrow habitually – for investment, or to finance temporary deficits during hard times, or (as we have learned about the privatised water firms recently) because they are diverting all the money they make into dividends for their shareholders and top executives.

Raising interest rates means the amount they will have to pay back to their lender of choice increases, meaning they have less spending money. Normally this creates a knock-on effect in which they stop buying the goods they need (because they can’t afford them), forcing the suppliers to reduce their prices in order to make sales. As inflation is all about price rises, this means inflation falls.

But that’s not happening at the moment because businesses are simply factoring the interest rate hikes into their pricing structures – they’re passing those rises on to you, the customer.

The result is that prices continue to rise, so inflation remains high.

The economist Richard Murphy explains what has happened in a useful Twitter thread. First, he tells us that the reasons we are being given for inflation are not true:

So inflation is not being caused by influences outside the control of the UK’s politicians and businesspeople. Mr Murphy continues:

Trade unionist Howard Beckett agrees with this, and adds to it usefully:

They’re allowed to do this because our politicians let them. The government could cap prices, but doesn’t want to. Is it because our MPs and their political parties are receiving weighty donations from the businesspeople?

Here’s Mr Murphy again:

So he agrees with This Writer (or more accurately, I agree with him – he’s the expert).

If you’re asking how this has anything to do with you, here comes the bombshell:

But…

The bottom line is that not only have you been deprived of the cash to buy the things that make life worth living (due to cuts that mean your pay is at 2005 – or even 2000 – levels while prices have surged) but you are also now expected to cover the increased prices demanded by the profiteers and the interest rate-setting banks from what is left.

Those are political choices.

Politicians whose own salaries (plus the afore-mentioned corporate donations) mean they aren’t affected by these decisions have used high inflation to take your money away from you.

The reason is simple:

They don’t want you to have any money.

Money provides security, and the lack of it means the lack of security. And an insecure person is controllable; you’ll do whatever you think you must, in order to survive. Right?

The ultimate aim – as This Site and others warned more than 10 years ago – is to put you in a permanent cycle of debt. This provides the fatcats with a population who will work like dogs for peanuts while they reap massive profits. Happy days – for them. Misery for you.

The only way to prevent this is to get rid of the people who are inflicting it on you – and that means using your vote to shift the rot out of Parliament.

Ah, but you don’t vote, do you? You can’t be bothered with politics because it doesn’t affect you.

Take a look in your wallet. Take a look at your bank account. Do you have as much in either as you did last year?

No?

Then politics does affect you. It doesn’t matter if you’re not interested in them; the oldies in the suits are definitely interested in you.

How badly are you going to let them mess up your life before you actually do something about it?


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Politics needs to give young people HOPE

I made a video clip:

I want to do a series about this so if you have any suggestions about how young people could get involved – and get what they want – please leave a comment!


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Legal challenge launched after Dominic Raab refuses public inquiry into youth detention centre abuses

Dominic Raab: he has spoken pretty words about human rights in the past, but apparently the human rights of young boys who were sexually abused in youth detention centres mean nothing to him.

Thousands of men say they were sexually abused at youth detention centres when they were young boys but Dominic Raab has refused to launch a public inquiry. Why?

That is the purpose of a judicial review demand that has been launched in the courts.

Raab has avoided commenting on the reasons for his decision – because the judicial review claim is taking place. Justice minister Damian Hinds, responding to a Parliamentary question, said it would be inappropriate to comment while legal proceedings are ongoing.

He did say the government has “the deepest sympathy for the men who suffered sexual or physical abuse while detained at Medomsley Detention Centre”.

But Medomsley is not the only place where these abuses are said to have happened.

It is true that more than 2,000 victims have come forward from Medomsley, but others have reported mistreatment at centres across England between the 1960s and the 1980s.

Several were raped and sexually abused by guards as children, and although several men have been prosecuted, survivors say the full extent of the horrors they suffered has not been properly investigated.

Lawyer David Greenwood said he had personally received reports of abuse at “every youth detention centre in the country” in the 1970s and 1980s.

Mr Greenwood, the head of child abuse at Switalskis Solicitors, said he had been contacted by 160 people held at the former Eastwood Park youth detention centre in Gloucestershire, but believes the true number of victims there will be more than 1,000.

Claimants argue that Mr Raab’s decision was legally “irrational” and violates obligations under human rights laws, including the freedom from torture and inhuman or degrading treatment.

A judicial review may overturn Raab’s decision and get an inquiry launched – and obviously this would be good for justice.

But will it tell us why Dominic Raab decided not to launch one in the first place?

For me, that is the important question.

We already know of many abuses that have taken place in these detention centres and it is clearly in the interests of justice to know how far the rot extended.

Raab – as the Secretary of State for Justice – has obstructed this.

I think we should be told the Justice Secretary’s reasons for wanting to hinder the course of justice.

Source: Dominic Raab refuses public inquiry into abuse of thousands of boys in youth detention centres | The Independent


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How is ÂŁ5 million in sports funding supposed to stop the youth crime epidemic?

Knife crime is rampant in the UK, much of it involving young people. How is ÂŁ5 million of sports funding supposed to turn it around?

Here’s the story. Discussion below:

I was talking about this only last night, with a 19-year-old friend of mine.

He told me that stunts like this from Dominic Raab are pointless.

Young people are surrounded by a culture of knife crime, he said – in the music they hear, the social media they visit, and in the people they meet in their daily lives (including, often, family members).

In the year ending March 2022, there were around 45,000 offences involving a knife or sharp instrument in England and Wales (excluding Greater Manchester Police Force), according to the Office for National Statistics. This was nine per cent higher than in 2020/21 and a massive 34 per cent higher than in 2010/11.

Home Office data shows there were 261 homicides (also known as murders) (currently recorded) using a sharp instrument, including knives and broken bottles. This meant sharp instruments were used in 40 per cent of the 594 homicides that occurred in 2021/22.

Data from NHS Digital shows there were 4,171 “hospital episodes” recorded in English hospitals in 2021/22 due to assault by a sharp object. This was two per cent higher than in 2020/21 and 14 per cent higher than in 2014/15.

How is a pittance of cash spread across the UK to fund sport supposed to help turn that tide?

Not only is it not enough, it will not be interesting to many of the youngsters who may have been involved in creating the statistics quoted above.

I wonder who provided the advice on which this was based, and on what information it was based.

And I wonder who knows how much it will cost to effect real change.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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#DonaldTrump accused of launching US version of #HitlerYouth

It seems the UK’s Johnson government isn’t the only political organisation copying whole chapters from the Nazi playbook.

US President Donald Trump has announced a plan to set up what critics have already dubbed his own version of the Hitler Youth – the scheme that was used to indoctrinate millions of German youngsters into Nazism in the 1930s and 40s.

The plan was announced in a Constitution Day speech at the White House Conference on American History at the National Archives Museum. Here’s CNN:

“We must clear away the web of twisted lies in our schools and classrooms and teach our children the magnificent truth about our country. We want our sons and daughters to know that they are the citizens of the most exceptional nation in the history of the world,” Trump said.

The President also called The New York Times’ 1619 Project, a Pulitzer Prize-winning project aimed at teaching American students about slavery, “toxic propaganda.”

In an apparent countering of the project’s narrative, Trump announced that he would be establishing a “national commission to promote patriotic education” called the 1776 Commission.

Apparently he said he wanted to counter “the liberal indoctrination” – mark that word – “of America’s youth”. But isn’t “indoctrination” exactly what he’s planning to do to them?

That’s another classic ploy of the Johnson government – doing something questionable but accusing somebody else of the crime.

It didn’t work – as these tweets demonstrate:

It seems Trump wants to create a new generation of stormtroopers for his far-right ideology.

Hitler’s version of that was nicknamed the Brown Shirts.

Perhaps we could call anyone who signs up to this the “Brown Shorts”?

In all seriousness, though, this is a terrifying development.

It shows that the most powerful nation on the planet is on the brink of totalitarianism. Will its citizens choose sanity in the election this November?

Source: Trump rails against the ‘liberal indoctrination of America’s youth’ in latest culture war salvo – CNNPolitics

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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This teacher set the record straight on who is responsible for rising youth crime: TORIES

The Mentorn TV executive who chooses Question Time audience members may be reviewing the company’s policy after this truth bomb dropped on the April 4 edition of the programme (there is a connection with the Conservative Party, as I understand it):

She was referring to the attempt by Home Secretary Sajid Javid – and by prime minister Theresa May, let’s not forget – to palm off responsibility for knife crime among young people onto teachers like herself.

As I wrote last week, she wants teachers to have a “public health duty” to identify warning signs that a young person could be in danger, such as worrying behaviour at school, issues at home, or “presenting at A&E with a suspicious injury”. For real?

There is an existing duty requiring teachers and police to work together to safeguard children. As a former Home Secretary, Theresa May should know that.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the teachers’ union the NASUWT, delivered the reality check to Mrs May when he said: “All professionals involved with children and young people are well aware of their responsibilities for safeguarding their health and welfare.

“Violent crime involving young people, of course, needs to be taken seriously and appropriate strategies considered. However, this is a complex issue which will not be resolved by putting additional pressures and responsibilities on teachers and head teachers or indeed others.”

No it will not.

But the very rich are looking for their next tax cut, aren’t they, Mrs May? And what’s a bit of extra crime among the plebs anyway? That’s just culling the stock. Am I right, Mrs May?

What do you think?


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Considering her choice of representatives, is Theresa May having a laugh at young people’s expense?

Theresa May is laughing at us all.

I think this tweet makes a lot of sense.

What do you reckon?


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G4S suspends detention centre employees – but why does this firm still get government contracts?

Brook House is operated privately by G4S on behalf of the Home Office [Image: BBC].

The only question here is why G4S was given a contract to run an immigration centre in the first place.

Shall we consider some of the firms other recent disasters?

The biggie that everyone remembers was the Olympic security debacle in 2012.

There was the fraud investigation over tagging contracts.

G4S has been fined more than 100 times since 2010 for breaching contracts for prisons it runs.

Labour dropped G4S from providing security at its annual conference over human rights concerns.

G4S was stripped of its contract to run a scandal-hit youth prison.

The company even has a cheesy sub-Bon Jovi theme song.

Now this:

G4S has suspended nine members of staff from an immigration removal centre near Gatwick Airport, following a BBC Panorama undercover investigation.

The programme says it has covert footage recorded at Brook House showing officers “mocking, abusing and assaulting” people being held there.

It says it has seen “widespread self-harm and attempted suicides” in the centre, and that drug use is “rife”.

G4S said it is aware of the claims and “immediately” began an investigation.

Read more: Detainees ‘mocked and abused’ at immigration centre – BBC News


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You can peacefully combat extremism – Michelle Thomasson

Labour MP Rushanara Ali sponsored the discussion.

Labour MP Rushanara Ali sponsored the discussion.

A guest blog by Michelle Thomasson.

Last week at the House of Commons in London there was a discussion on ‘Youth, Alienation and Radicalisation’ – terms that can equally encompass young Muslims as well as white working class people.

Rushanara Ali MP had agreed to sponsor the meeting and she was joined by Fiyaz Mughal OBE, director of Faith Matters, an interfaith and anti-extremist organisation and Professor Matthew Feldman, an expert on fascist ideology and the contemporary far-right in Europe and the USA.

There were comments from the discussion that can prompt us all to do our part to peacefully combat extremism and as one of the attendees I was keenly listening for anything that may shed light on the root causes of this disenchantment and how it could be addressed.

Here are some of my notes:

Fiyaz opened the meeting by acknowledging that the Paris incident would result in new legislation and information-gathering amongst the North African community that would have consequences on free speech, but the right to publish is a right we should protect.

He also stressed that even though people from a lower socio-economic group were more vulnerable to radicalisation, evidence was only cursory. Social exclusion could have many causes such as mental health issues, a lack of trust in the system, a perceived discrimination, ideology or theology. ‘Stop and search’ practices along with anti-Muslim rhetoric in the media and our UK foreign policy in relation to the Israeli/Palestinian crisis should also be considered. The Koachi brothers had been described as normal boys but they became politicised after a journey to Yemen and had stated that the images from the Abu Ghraib prison in 2004 were a source of grievance, while Kahn – a UK extremist – had cited the Iraq war as one of the driving forces behind his actions, so the online world can radicalise young people.

There is also vulnerability after converting from one faith to another (as well as changes in the individual, familiar external supports also fall away) leaving the young person susceptible to gang-like pressures, thereby allowing an extreme group to exert greater influence. Extreme groups often have a gang mentality; they are against state structures and have a nihilistic mindset. Fiyaz also mentioned that radicalisation did not occur in the Mosques; it was actually taking place in common public spaces such as the gym.

Matthew highlighted radicalisation as an accumulative process, created from a series of events. However, since 9/11, this was the first time France had suffered home-grown terrorism. He stated that terrorism is a tactic that is not just linked to one group; extremists, though diametrically opposed, rely upon each other’s narratives.

A member of the audience asked the unanswerable question, “Why do people move from non-violence to violence?” Matthew replied that, currently, there are no definitive explanations – only indications as to the causes, with less than one per cent of extremists actually moving to violence. At this point he made it clear that far-right groups may not agree on the use of violence or have similar views on the electoral system, but they do have a common denominator: Anti-Muslim prejudice now prevails (Anti-Semitism used to be the common factor). Approximately half of the attacks on Muslims in the UK are carried out by a hardened core of far right individuals who use prejudicial logic and tit-for-tat extremism. For example, there was a 373 per cent increase in reported anti-Muslim incidents (the contagion effect) in the week after the Lee Rigby tragedy and up to three months later a massive rise in Mosque attacks had been maintained.

Note that collecting detailed statistics is not easy because hate crimes are not disaggregated into their specific types and five out of six hate crimes are not usually reported to the police. Hate crimes are often opportunistic and only 25 per cent of them are tried, resulting in a significant lack of confidence.

New faces of the far right include ‘National Action’, a small group of “proud” neo-Nazis who are targeting campuses, and ‘Britain First.’

Rushanara gave her opinion on why young people turned from politics to radicalisation. She said that, politically, we live in a difficult international environment, the interdependence between countries is profound, while technology and the Internet can be a negative or positive force. On the positive side, she thought young people wanted interactive politics and that they were interested in issues such as the environment and poverty.

Nevertheless, the events of 9/11 and 7/7 were uniquely different for those of young Muslim identity; other groups had not suffered the same effects. She felt that Britain leads in dealing with youth alienation but extreme narratives have to be constantly challenged; we have to be thick-skinned and be able to explain our stance contrary to those holding extreme views:

  • How can we use our collective intelligence to prevent such extremism?
  • How can we use our personal sphere of influence in our everyday contact with young people and can we empower ourselves to confront these issues?
  • We have to ensure that young people are not made to feel defensive if blamed, incorrectly, for the acts of others who conveniently use the term ‘religion’ for their terrorism.

Matthew at this point reminded the audience that liberalism requires everyone’s participation; we all have a responsibility for the society we inhabit.

Far right groups are aware that The Racial and Religious Hatred Act in the UK does not offer Muslims protection (as an ethnic group) and are therefore, for example, not given the same legal protection as Jews or Sikhs. Britain has strong equality legislation but funds have been slashed, so the Equality and Human Rights Commission cannot enforce the legislation well.

Rushanara stated that neighbourliness in the UK overall was in decline, therefore charging immigrants with all the responsibility for non-integration ie that they were the ones who were at fault for non-integration only served “to do immigrants down”.

Fiyaz reiterated the role of the media and that the Murdochs of this world, who carry on as normal, are not being held to account for their sensationalist, negative reporting; the media needs to develop a responsible approach. He emphasised that far-right propaganda can be extremely slick and difficult to combat and that we, as citizens, need to build a shared sense of community ownership that creates more opportunities to mix and care for one another.

Were all the important issues covered? Did we get to the bottom of youth disenchantment in this short discussion? No. The role of UK foreign policy and the militaristic agenda was only briefly mentioned; after all, extreme far-right views are not only the territory of the young and disenfranchised!

One statement from the audience aptly described the difficulty many of us have in expressing our citizenship: The majority can feel disempowered in a society driven by rampant neoliberal capitalism.

We can all suffer from alienation – can we do our bit to help each other? Can we especially reach out to young people, to combat this inhuman milieu? A small act of kindness may go much further than we think.

Let’s give it a try.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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