Welcome To Zelo Street!

This is a blog of liberal stance and independent mind

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Corbyn Smears - Lawyers Are Called

At long last, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn realised that the tsunami of potentially seriously defamatory claims about what he didn’t tell the Czech security agencies in the late 1980s would not abate, and called the lawyers in. It was not enough to stem the flow of Fake News pouring from the right-leaning part of the Fourth Estate, but perhaps someone out there will get the message, and remember what happened last time this happened.
It was back in 1995 that the Murdoch Sunday Times libelled former Labour leader Michael Foot, claiming that he had been a paid Soviet agent. The late and not at all lamented Screws followed up with its own claims. Both papers settled with Foot, the Screws almost immediately, the Sunday Times after giving the impression it would tough it out. The prospect of Rupert Murdoch being summoned to court may have hastened settlement.
No man is of perfect courage

Perhaps someone mentioned this to Tory MP Ben “splat the chavs” Bradley, who made a flagrantly libellous Twitter claim about Jezza and the Eastern Bloc yesterday afternoon. Soon after, Corbyn let it be known that he had instructed lawyers to lean on the terminally clueless MP for Mansfield, and the Tweet was hurriedly deleted.
As Mid Norfolk MP George Freeman effectively repeated the libel when he Tweeted “Corbyn was a paid Communist spy? IF true, this is surely the moment Corbyn will face a challenge from Labour MPs who know that not to act would be electoral suicide. Watch Lady Nugee, Emily Thornberry, busily pretending not to prepare to be ready”, perhaps Jezza’s legal team might want a word with him too.
Also potentially on the legal radar should be Ben Wallace, representing Wyre and Preston North and a junior minister, likening the Labour leader to one of the infamous “Cambridge Four” when he snarked “‘Jeremy has been interested in Foreign Policy issues his entire political career’ - Labour MP Louis Haigh , BBC Daily Politics - yup so was Kim Philby”.
And when the legal eagles have finished with those two specimens of opportunist idiocy, there is the continuing appetite of the Tories’ press pals to consider, with a fresh batch of unsubstantiated claims being pitched as if they were true this morning.
The increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph ventured “Corbyn urged to reveal his Stasi file [not easy if he isn’t in possession of it] … May puts Labour leader under pressure to authorise release of East German records”. Did Theresa May even mention the former East Germany? No she didn’t, so that may interest the lawyers twice over.
Over at the Northcliffe House bunker, the obedient hackery of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre have been similarly adventurous with “As file reveals Czech spy called Labour leader ‘the right man to give information’, PM says it’s … TIME TO BE OPEN, COMRADE CORBYN”. Did she call Jezza “Comrade” or refer to him by name? Nope.
What press insiders really think about the story

And there just had to be another swipe from the Murdoch goons at the Super Soaraway Currant Bun, who have told readers of “JEZ’S ‘COMMIE SUPPLY LINE’”. Once again, they rely on a single discredited source, and the heavy use of quote marks shows some serious hedging to be in progress. But the defamatory intent is all too clear.

Never mind one foolish MP. Forget IPSO. Take the SOBs to the cleaners, and now.

Cadbury Halal Stupidity

Christmas has come and gone, and so has Valentines Day. So shops are gearing up for Easter, the next excuse to flog chocolate to the unsuspecting masses. That mainly means Easter eggs. It also means ranting at Cadbury’s because, well, that’s one of those new-fangled Easter traditions, dontcha know? Last year there was a faux ruckus about the alleged removal of the word Easter from their publicity (not true), and this year?
Spot the Muslim. Allegedly

This year it’s all about Scary Muslims (tm). No, seriously. The row, which seems to have started life in Australia, has built and seamlessly crossed over to the UK, both locations playing host to the paranoid and ignorant who get paranoid at the mention of Halal.
As chocolate does not involve the slaughter of animals, there is no question of whether it is  Halal (or, indeed, Kosher). It just is. But for some out there on the wacko fringe, it’s the hill on which their credibility has come to die. “Cadbury is ‘certified halal’ and has removed the word ‘Easter’ from their wrapping. Let’s remove them from our shopping lists” told one member of the brains trust. Another added “How will you eat yours? I won’t, Halal certified Cadbury  bloody no Easter eggs, boycott these gesture eggs”.
But that was only a sighting shot. “Will not be buying Cadbury again. Anything halal is barbaric”. Yes, well. Resisting Hate tried reason. No, that didn’t work, either: “I suggest you google ‘is Cadbury chocolate halal’ then tweet”. And it gets worse.
Cadbury have been doing this for a while now, I boycotted them around 3 years ago for that reason. The halal certification was one thing but they’ve been removing references to Christian holidays slowly but steadily”. Paranoid, much? “I love chocolate but if it is halal you can shove it. From my research cadbury says it is not so please feel free to apply”. That’s the Manchester branch of the For Britain party. I’ll just leave that one there.
There was more. Rather a lot more. “Not supporting Cadbury who support halal certification #ChocCraving”. Will be craving for a long time if you want chocs that are not Halal, but hey ho. “Halal chocolate? No thanks. I'll buy Lindt rather than be paid to eat Cadbury”. I put Stupidity in the post title, because there was Stupidity.
On it went: “You are a Halal company and I refuse to condone torture and suffering in killing of animals, so no Cadbury for me”. Er, hello? Chocolate doesn’t involve … oh, forget it. On to the next wacko: “Stopped buying Cadbury products ever since they chose to make their products  Halal certified. Only to terrorists”. Can it get even worse?
Don’t ask. “Do not buy anti Christian, anti Australian products. Cadbury is supporting halal and Islamic interests, by collecting a levy from YOU. The Easter has been removed, some eggs are now ‘hunting eggs’ and crunchie bunnies, very offensive, please share, Buy Lindt non halal, it is”. No it isn’t. Oh, look out … “Cadbury’s gloating over their new halal certificates.. this Traitorous company needs to learn a harsh lesson.. share and boycott Cadbury’s this Easter peeps.. hit them hard in their greedy traitorous pockets”.

As in Australia, so in the UK. Once one paranoid and ignorant wacko kicks off, the idiocy knows no bounds. Just say “Halal”, sit back, and watch the screaming stupidity unravel.

Monday, 19 February 2018

Two Tory MPs Applaud Homophobia

James Cleverly, now Tory MP for Braintree, a constituency which, as the General Elections of 1997 and 2001 showed, is not as safe a seat as may be imagined, is one of the new breed of Conservatives. He is held up as an example of how his party has changed, and is prepared to welcome BAME candidates, even to seats out in the Home Counties commuter belt. This garnered much credibility for him.
Hang on a minute, did I mean to say that?

Sadly, Cleverly has, in his desire to court attention, developed a habit of bandwagon-jumping which has occasionally meant not looking too closely before leaping. This, along with the poorly judged remarks of one Tory fan and the idiocy of one of Cleverly’s colleagues, has dropped him in the kind of hot water that he should be avoiding.
Here's the rep from Sterilisations'R'Us

The exchanges began when the deeply unpleasant Ben “splat the chav” Bradley Tweeted to Tory campaigns officer Chloe Wilson “You're famous @ChloeSWilson !! Congrats!” What he did not mention was why she should suddenly have achieved this status. But Labour-backing journalist Owen Jones knew very well why.
Owen Jones

Ben Bradley, best known for calling for ‘unemployed wasters’ to be sterilised, congratulates prominent Tory activist laughing at her followers calling a gay man ‘a little fag’”. The offending Tweet has disappeared, but the adverse comment passed on Bradley’s congratulatory note shows that many others saw it.
All we saw from Ms Wilson was the magnificently slanted “Owen Jones has accused Ben of ‘representing the people at the top of society.’ Owen Jones went to Oxford, worked in Parliament and then became a journalist. Ben has worked in Aldi, and his wife is still the manager of a local store. The left have lost it”. Ho yus. Jones went from the local Comprehensive to Oxford. Bradley went from an independent school to Bath and Salford Universities, flunked both, and ended up at Nottingham Trent.
Still, minor detail, eh? Meanwhile, Jones had moved on to Cleverly: “James Cleverly is yet another privately educated Tory MP who backs slashing taxes on the rich, hammering benefits and privatising services, but thinks I'm a hypocrite because I went from a Northern comp to Oxford and support social justice”. This was when The Great Man lost it.
It’s clear that @ChloeSWilson struck a nerve. It’s also clear that lots on the Left think @bbradleymp is a ‘class traitor’ for having the audacity to be a @Conservatives … Owen would like to keep working class lads like Ben ‘in their place’”. Bradley is not “working class”. Jones has no such imperative. But Cleverly had now endorsed homophobia, as had Bradley. For which we will not be seeing an apology any time soon.
Nor will the voters of Mansfield and Braintree be finding out why their elected representatives have time on their hands not to serve their interests, but indulge in a social media pile-on which had the homophobic term “fag” as its Genesis.
You want to know why the Tories are so desperate to paint Labour, and indeed any other party, as the really nasty ones? Hello Ben Bradley and James Cleverly.

Corbyn Smear - Call A Lawyer NOW

Yesterday, it was the Sunday edition of the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph pushing the Fake News smear that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn had passed information to a Czech diplomat in the late 1980s - in exchange for money. Today it is the obedient hackery of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre at the Daily Mail who have taken up the baton and waddled right along with it.
New claim as calls for official probe grow … LABOUR MPs ‘WERE PAID £10,000 TO MEET SPIES” thunders the headline, with the supporting article claiming “MPs were paid up to £10,000 to meet Eastern Bloc agents during the Cold War, an ex-spy claimed last night … Jan Sarkocy said at least 15 senior Labour figures had shared information with him in the late 1980s. Some pocketed between £1,000 and £10,000 per meeting but still wanted more, he alleged”. Jan Sarkocy once more.
No use just sitting there ...

The same Jan Sarkocy who claimedI’ll tell you this. I knew what Thatcher would have for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and what she would wear next day”. The one who said that the Czech rĂ©gime paid for either Live Aid or the 1988 Free Nelson Mandela concert. The one who is rather obviously saying what the right-leaning press wants him to say.
... get yourselves pointed at a lawyer

As I said yesterday, this is libellous and the Labour leadership should be consulting lawyers: that the Mail is prepared to repeat the libel shows that Dacre and his lawyers have decided they won’t get taken to the cleaners for it. Now, we have the Mail telling “The Mail understands MPs are urging the Commons foreign affairs committee to consider the claims in its probe into the influence of foreign powers on elections”.
We also have the sight of the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog, the sub-boot boy division of the Murdoch press, duly emboldened as they crow “The Tories are calling for Jeremy Corbyn to be hauled before the Foreign Affairs select committee to face questions over his links to a Czech spymaster. David Morris has written to FASC chairman Tom Tugendhat”, and order the BBC to cover the non-story.
And while Jan Sarkocy claims there is more evidence in the Czech secret service archives, Mark Seddon has once again shown that the former diplomat is talking out of the back of his neck “The Czech Central Archive for the StB acknowledges that they have no such documentation. This is a carbon copy of the failed smear campaign against former Czech Minister and Charter 77 activist, Jan Kavan”.
Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell and all the others being gratuitously smeared, and indeed now libelled, on the “evidence” of a single discredited source should pay heed to that name. Kavan was wrongly accused of collaborating with the Czech secret service in the late 1960s. It took him FIVE YEARS to clear his name. If Corbyn and his team allow the mud to be thrown, and to stick, it will be at least as bad for him.

The Labour leader has no alternative but to call in the lawyers. The fact that he has already been vetted for the Privy Council, which shows the accusations coming out of the right-leaning press are bunk, will count for nothing if the tide of Fake News is allowed to continue washing over the Westminster bubble. He must sue, and sue now. End of story.

UKIP’s Wacko New Leader

So farewell then Henry Bolton. Leader of the motley convocation of saloon bar propper-uppers at UKIP for less than five months, he has been summarily dumped after being caught in possession of an explicitly racist girlfriend and succeeded by Gerard Batten, who is, er, not quite as explicitly racist. The problem for all those Kippers claiming that he isn’t an unreconstructed racist is that he isn’t known as Adolf von Batten for nothing.
I am not a racialist, BUT, und zis is a big but ...

Batten is already well known for his rabid Islamophobia, which reached its nadir following the London Bridge attack last year. Ranting about “Saturday night’s latest Mohammedan attack”, he continuedSaturday night’s victims were just the latest in a long line of fourteen hundred years of bloodshed … How we defend ourselves against this cult is going to be one the biggest political issues facing us in the decades to come”.

There was more. “It is a literalist interpretation of Islam! The sickos read the bits about ‘kill infidels, make war on infidels’ and ‘strike terror into the hearts of infidels’ and take them literally … True, it’s a mish-mash of contradictory nonsense.  You can take the ‘peace and love’ bits or the ‘kill infidels’ bit and take your choice”. Whether Batten has ever read the Bible from cover to cover is not known. It contains similar contradictions.
After all, Judaism, Christianity and Islam are not known as the Abrahamic Religions for nothing: they all share the same starting point, the story of Abraham (or Ibrahim, if you’re reading the Qur’an). But to concede the bloodshed covering the Old Testament would be inconvenient for Adolf von Batten, so he does not.

No, he “claimed many Muslim migrants to the UK believed in a literal interpretation of the Koran … He claimed new arrivals to Britain should be obliged to sign an agreement rejecting this view”. Real freedom of opinion bloke, isn’t he? Nor is Batten too hot on Jews, although here he prefers to operate in code, that code being “Soros”. Soros is told where to get off. Soros is the kind of billionaire who likes the hated EU.
But the other lot are Nazis: Batten smeared Walter Hallstein, the first President of the European Commission by claiming he “worked for the Nazi Govnt. This was his second go at working for ‘European integration’”. Hallstein had worked in academia, was conscripted into the Wehrmacht during World War 2, and later became a prisoner of war. But for Adolf von Batten, he is a convenient target for smearing and projection.

Can it get worse? Rather a lot worse, in fact: it’s now been revealed by the Mirror that Batten, like Jacob Rees Mogg, spoke at a gathering the Traditional Britain Group, the domain of snooty and intolerant bigot Gregory Lauder Frost. As the Mirror told, “It was presided over by vice-chairman Gregory Lauder-Frost - who we revealed last month was secretly filmed by a Hope Not Hate activist calling Vanessa Feltz a ‘fat Jewish s**g’ and Baroness Lawrence a ’n*****’ … In a speech from the 2011 dinner posted on YouTube, Mr Batten said he was “honoured” to be invited”.

He keeps predictable company, too

Plus he’s backed by the likes of Bill “Viagra Golliwog” Etheridge, who’s given his support to the group who wanted to lynch Sadiq Khan. Anyone still wondering why he’s known as Adolf von Batten? Thought not. He’s a total wacko. And now he’s leading the Kippers.

So that’s another nail in the UKIP coffin. Just rejoice at that news.

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Corbyn Smear - Enter A Useful Idiot

More than one so-called historian has already seen their credibility extinguished by endorsing the fantasy claims made by a former Czech diplomat against not just Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, but other Labour figures. Dominic Sandbrook, now an asset of the Rothermere press, has made himself look even more foolish by backing the smears, as has the impeccably right-leaning Niall Ferguson.
Giles Udy. In a remainder bin near you very soon

And willingly joining them this weekend is one Giles Udy, whose research into the Soviet Gulags will have seen its value plummet as a result. Udy has been enthusiastically Retweeting CapX, the Spectator, Dan, Dan The Oratory Man, the odious flannelled fool Master Harry Cole, and Ross Kempsell of the Guido Fawkes blog - all on the Corbyn smears which have now well and truly unravelled. And it gets worse.
Corbyn and Diane Abbott took a holiday together in the DDR. Given their admiration for the Communist dictatorship it is inconceivable that they did not meet party officials. Those meetings would have been extensively written up and now be in Stasi archives” he claims, on no evidence at all. Then he enthuses “thread thread thread thread” at the further smears dreamed up by Robert Colville of the CPS (which isn’t biased, honestly).
He tells of “A new account to follow”, this being a piss-poor parody pretending Corbyn is guilty as smeared, before returning to the allegedly serious stuff. “I doubt Corbyn did take money from Communist spies but others did: eg the 1970s trade union leader whose wife had been a Soviet spy since the 30s. One key Labour figure even met intelligence officers in the Soviet embassy to discuss taking Labour further Left” he muses solemnly.
But the Corbyn smears are a single and unreliable source. That does not deter Udy: “Corbyns [sic] behaviour was reprehensible but not unique. Labour ranks have included many deluded fans of Socialist totalitarianism over the years. The much derided Blair revolution nearly saw them off for good but his successors carelessly squandered that part of his legacy … Now they are back with a vengeance. For more see my article in the Sunday papers tomorrow. Details to follow”. Who had commissioned him? Have a guess.
Yes, it was the Telegraph, and after pausing long enough to endorse yet another of Jan Sarkocy’s flights of fancy, off he goes on the sales pitch. “My article in today's @Telegraph: Labour collusion with the Soviets has a long history - from the union leader taking KGB money to the Lab Gen Sec meeting intelligence officers in the Soviet Embassy to engineer a 'genuine Socialist govt' in the UK”. All of whom are now dead and therefore won’t sue.
Who is he fingering? “In the troubled 1970s union barons controlled Labour (& the country). Jack Jones, leader of the Transport and General Workers Union (Unite today) was one of the most powerful men in the country. He took Kremlin cash and his wife had been a Soviet agent since the 1930s … In other words, this has been going on a long time”. Yeah, right. Udy’s source is Oleg Gordievsky - the same source used by the Sunday Times to smear Michael Foot. That ended up in a whopping libel bill - as it wasn’t true.
His targets are dead, his sources discredited. Yet out there on the right, Giles Udy is feted for his insights into Labour and the Soviet Union. As they say in God’s Own County - on the basis of what he has shown here, I wouldn’t pay the silly bugger in washers.