Tag Archives: Dachau

Diary Blog, 16 January 2023

Morning music

On this day a year ago

From the newspapers

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/us-news/twins-separated-birth-find-each-28960150?int_source=nba.

Amazing story.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11638389/Half-universities-peddle-woke-agenda-students.html.

UK universities need a chistka (purge).

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/crime/shepherds-bush-pub-assault-james-stephenson-leg-broken-b1052834.html

Another example of how public services in the UK just do not work any more. The victim of a bad assault, a woman, had to lie under blankets outside a pub for 2 hours, waiting for an ambulance that never turned up. Eventually, she had to take an Uber minicab to hospital.

Adding insult to injury, the police, until pressed, did not bother to gather easily-available cctv evidence.

Finally, the defendant (finally caught after the police had been pressured to actually do their job) was let off with a suspended sentence (albeit with a stiff financial penalty by way of compensation for the victim).

There was reasonable mitigation, yes, but the crime was both violent and unpleasant in itself and, also, the victim was left with continuing —and quite possibly permanent— disabilities and pain caused directly or proximately by the actions of the defendant.

If this continues, UK society will become a jungle.

Jack Monroe

Those who follow the “Jack Monroe” saga have noticed that she never, or at least rarely, admits to having bought expensive items for herself out of the monies she has available to her from several sources; she always either “finds” them, remarkably, or buys them for a song (for a tenth or less of the normal price), or is “given” them by friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, or strangers, or has acquired them via “exchange” for unspecified “services“.

As for her having been “in full time work for the best part of 2 decades“, that seems unlikely, but is a question of definition.

“Two decades” brings us back to early 2003. At that time, “Jack Monroe was 14 years old. She left school at 16 (~2005), working in a chip shop and a Starbucks before joining the fire brigade in Essex in 2007 as a call handler. She left in 2011, and was thereafter, for ~18 months, “on the dole”.

“Jack Monroe” worked for her local newspaper in 2012-2013, and also blogged, after which she got a book deal worth, I read, £25,000, with Penguin: see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Monroe.

So there we have 7-8 years of intermittent paid work, not quite the 10+ years she claims.

Since 2013, “Jack Monroe” has been (it seems) mostly or completely self-employed, as scribbler, blogger, TV talking head etc. To what extent that counts as “full-time work” is an open question; if yes, then the total is about 17 years; if not, about 7 or so, as said.

As previously noted, Jack Monroe both claims poverty, and so asks for the public to send her money, but also says sometimes that she was in poverty (while on State benefits for 1-2 years), but not now.

Since about 2013, “Jack Monroe” has been in receipt of monies from a number of sources: TV and radio appearances, Press interviews, about £100,000 royalties from her several books (most still in print, I think), deals with ASDA and other supermarkets, and substantial donations (eg from 634 —at time of writing— very misguided people sending her £3.50-£44 each, monthly, via Patreon),

It is claimed by some on Twitter that “Jack Monroe” is “downsizing” (as she puts it) not because she cannot afford the c.£4,000 a month rent and other expenses of her present home but because she is buying a new but possibly smaller home; some say paying the full price in cash. I have no idea whether that be so.

At what point do the 634 mugs still subsidizing her via Patreon start to think why they are still funnelling cash to this very unreliable “grifter” and fantasist, who has recently been in the Guardian laughing about how, when drunk or drugged, she would buy four large pieces of furniture in a few days “for a laugh” or some such.

Is all that is required, for “Jack Monroe” to receive donations from naive mugs, for her to snarl occasionally on Twitter about “cost of living” or “wicked Tories“? Even if they are (and no argument from me on that), how does that either seriously oppose “Conservative” policies or “help the poor“?

“Jack Monroe” has claimed to have been working on a measure of how “the poor” are disproportionately affected by inflation, something she calls (from one of the Discworld books of Terry Pratchett) the “Vimes Boots Index“, but it seems that that might be just another fantasy; in short, another lie.

See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boots_theory.

Other tweets seen

A truth unacknowledged by those born with a silver spoon…

(((Simon Harris))) has to live, after all (I suppose) (whoever he is).

May be useful to people; I do not know.

An ethnic minority carpetbagger in Government will be protected, as far as possible. Others, English, less connected, poorer, would face sterner measures. I recall a colleague at the Bar, in 2007, telling me about a Devonian fishing captain that he had defended, and who (along with his few crew) had decided to evade tax on profits of fish caught. The man was apparently a heroin addict. They all pleaded guilty, the crew got off with suspended sentences, but the captain received a sentence of, if I recall aright, two years’ imprisonment. The amount was tens of thousands (perhaps about £20,000), not the millions of the Zahawi case.

Historical revisionism

Ostalgie-musik

[Grenzpolizei DDR (East German border guards). Maybe we in the UK need something similar in order to stem the migration-invasion]

It often seems that the UK now has effectively no border security. Untermenschen from various countries invade our territory without difficulty, and when “intercepted” (ferried to the UK, or met at the beach), taken to a 3* or 4* hotel, thenceforth battening off the British people for the rest of their lives.

The very best that can be expected of 99% of the migrant-invaders is that they will be totally useless; more likely, most of them are criminal and even murderous.

Late tweets seen

No Western news agencies or TV stations seem interested in finding out how the Kiev regime is treating captured Russian soldiers.

Late music

Taking the Whole Package

This evening, I watched a show called something like “The Real Marigold Hotel”, in which four elderly once-“celebrities” went to a country (in this case, Cuba) in order to see what facilities might be available for retired people. As such, as a “documentary”, it was very superficial and lacking depth, though entertaining. What interested me was the society in general.

The Cuba –actually just Havana– shown (and I have never been there, though I am quite well acquainted with its history of the past century and, in the manner of Sarah Palin, have glimpsed it from the air and from the sea) was in fact largely the stereotype: old American cars in pastel pink and blue, decrepit but charming colonial mansions, palm trees etc.

The old people went to cultural classes and talked to Cubans in parks. It struck me anew that any society is a package: Cuba has some culture (both European and its own mixture incorporating the Caribbean and African, as well as that of the USA.

The Havana shown was one where the parks were (on the face of it) safe to visit, the people well-educated (one or two Cubans carefully making the point that their good education had been free, as were the classes available to the elderly).

Most people know that the Cuban healthcare system is also very good, both in relative and absolute terms. On the other hand, and as the TV programme noted, the Internet is tightly controlled, requires a card (no doubt traceable..) and is mostly only available in “wi-fi” areas such as certain parks; not so many have home Internet connection.

It is perhaps pointless to reiterate what most of us know in terms of the Cuban police state (which –in all the documentary films I have ever seen– is so pervasive that it is invisible: you never see the hand of the State in plain sight, though it is there all right).

So there you have the Cuban package: low crime rate (supposedly), no obvious disorder, at least some rather polite, cultured citizens, good education and healthcare etc (one Cuban did say that it was better before the supportive Soviet Union collapsed), as well as a certain charm.

As against that, a socialist state which controls the news and Internet tightly, imprisons dissidents for years (not to mention the large number who, in the late 1950s and 1960s, were just shot); a socialized economy which (leaving aside the effect of American embargo) was and largely is hopelessly inefficient at providing consumer goods. Travel restrictions, too.

Let us take a different case. The German Reich in the 1930s was intolerant of dissidents too, though it was far more tolerant than was the Soviet Union under Stalin or, indeed, Cuba under Fidel.

The National Socialist state imprisoned some dissidents or placed them in concentration camps such as Dachau (though few now know that many served short sentences, such as 3 months, there, and were not there indefinitely). Others were encouraged or more or less forced out of the country. There was a generally militarized ethos. How could a state both German and quasi-socialist be anything else?

In the Reich, there was state interference in culture (though, again, far less than, say, in the Soviet Union). Consumer production was given a lower priority than rearmament (“Guns Before Butter”), though large projects for the benefit of the people were also pushed into the foreground: the Autobahnen; the VW “people’s car”; the 1936 Olympics; a huge programme of educational and cultural events; the Kraft durch Freude [“Strength through Joy”] programme of Canary Islands cruises and Baltic beach holidays for the people (at a time when, in the UK, most people who had a holiday at all were corralled into poky Blackpool guest houses…); better nutrition for young people, too.

The National Socialist Reich was hugely beneficial for most Germans, certainly compared to what existed in the Weimar period. The Reich solved the inflation problem, the unemployment problem, the decadence problem and, yes, what it termed “the Jewish question”.

In the UK at the same time, there was greater ostensible “freedom”: elections every 5 years, the freedom to eat daily at the Ritz or at the Savoy Grill (if one had the funds..), no obvious book censorship (though, behind the scenes, there was much, not least via the Jewish element, even then). There was official theatre and cinema censorship (via the Lord Chamberlain’s office) and there was also, of course, grinding poverty (especially outside the South East), and a very repressive justice and prison system; not to mention the pervasive class system and its inequities.

No state, no political system is “perfect”. All have flaws, and all (most, at least) have benefits (though what might be the benefits of living in, say, North Korea or the Congo might be disputed). The aim can only be to do the best with what is available at the material time. We take everything as a package, as a whole.