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Friday 23 October 2009

Sarah McDermott | 12:43 UK time, Friday, 23 October 2009

"Buddy can you spare a dime", "Dancing in the dark", "Life is just a bowl of cherries", all phrases that were coined during the Great Depression and have remained in the American lexicon.

As fixed as the haunting images of migrant families captured by Dorothea Lange's unparalleled photographs.

The Great Depression shaped modern America, literally in the great skyscrapers, and metaphorically as the Depression gave way to World War II, the Cold War, and ultimately the greed of the Gordon Gecko years.

But has it taken this new crash to bring America to its senses?

In a special edition of Newsnight and Newsnight Review tonight live from New York, we explore the economic and cultural landscape that was created out of the Wall Street crash 80 years ago tomorrow, and ask if our present travails are anything approaching the same scale.

We have a stellar guest list. In the studio historian Simon Schama, queen of the internet and Republican-turned-Democrat Arianna Huffington, banker Liaquat Ahamed (whose book Lords of Finance points to the actions of four bankers in the 20s as central to the crash), and the novelist Hari Kunzru.

Already in the can, Jay McInerney, who has some extraordinary observations of his own, which he is working into a new book. Get this - he says people on the Upper East Side are pretending to have lost money through the Madoff scandal.

Meanwhile, Philip Roth speaks of this as just another dark time in a series of dark times in America.

Paul Mason has made two archive-rich films to kick off discussions.

First, he asks if the 1929 crash taught Ben Bernanke and others a lesson that helped avoid a depression this time.

And second a film on the cultural response to 1929 - the literature of Steinbeck and Henry Roth, the "talkies" which portrayed the underbelly of American life, and the state-induced saccharine of screwball comedies like Bringing up Baby.

Then we'll look at the cultural response this time around.

TV sitcoms now focus on family life again. In Hank, Kelsey Grammer is an entrepreneur who loses his job and moves to small town America. In the explicit Hung a teacher who is struggling to make ends meet becomes a male prostitute. Oliver Stone (who only last year said he couldn?t imagine revisiting Wall Street) is currently making Wall Street II, with Michael Douglas reprising the role of Gordon Gecko.

And, of course, like Banquo's ghost, Michael Moore has turned up with his own trumpet blast at the bankers with Capitalism, A Love Story.

The sparks will fly, so do join us live from New York at 10.30pm on BBC Two.



Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    after watching the non event on question time wherea befuddled Jack Straw was made to look stupid as the hate mongers vented their spleen on Griffin and as loathed as the man is he is the recepient of failed policies pursued by Straw and his ilk in that he has allowed inner city neglect, hopelessness and all the other failed policies of NuLabour. Only a truly socialist agenda will rescue Labour from the failure of these Thatcherite mavericks that have infiltrated this once proud party. Straw may have nine lives but every one of them has been a failure.

  • Comment number 2.

    Sounds like a fascinating take on a fascinating subject. Cultural and economic responses are intertwined in both time and consequence of each other.

    This crisis will be different to the last for sure but humans are broadly the same so the same drivers to human responses will be there, just different outcomes and timescales more in tune with our times.

    Sounds like a fascinating subject worthy of what I understand to be Newsnights place in the broascasting spectrum.

    Please dont ruin it all though by asking any politicians or leveraged think tanks to contribute. I honestly dont know how you can sit at the same table as some of these people without slapping them!

  • Comment number 3.

    "Get this - he says people on the Upper East Side are pretending to have lost money through the Madoff scandal."

    Some of us got that months ago ;-)

  • Comment number 4.

    'Dorothea Lange's unparalleled photographs'

    Oh come on Kirsty try Walker Evans :

    And you should look at why someone like Lewis Hine didn't get on with Roy Striker :

    'The main photography project during the New Deal Administration that has received so much popular attention is clearly Roy Stryker's collection. However, there was potential competition to Stryker's project from Lewis Hine. By the mid 1930s, Hine was seeking work and approached Stryker to join the FSA project but was rebuffed several times. One possible reason Stryker refused to hire Hine was the basic issue of control. Stryker had ongoing problems with his photographers who sought greater personal control over their work. After various struggles with Lange and Mary Wolcott Post, he turned to hiring young, inexperienced photographers who would closely follow his direction. Hine clearly did not fit these criteria -- in fact Lori Oden points out that he was not willing to relinquish rights to his negatives. Realizing that the FSA project was not possible, Hine sought another government job taking photographs and found a place within the WPA National Research Program.17

    As part of this project, Hine documented a fleeting moment in the unemployed workers movement in Scott's Run, West Virginia. This view of the Workers Alliance that Hine captured in late 1936 is very different than the FSA photographs of the organization. He went far beyond a few photographs of the unemployed workers meeting to document conditions for the unemployed miners. His emotionally sensitivity towards his subjects is unsurpassed. One must question why Stryker was so critical and claimed that Hine was beyond his peak. One possible conclusion is that Stryker was concerned about Hine's reputation usurping the attention that the FSA photography project received. This is a speculative conclusion, since none of the historical information gives a clear answer as to why Stryker was dismissive of Hine's work.'

    Ref :

    Could it be that Striker wanted to control the 'type' of images and used the fact that getting work as a photographer was tough, to leverage photographers into his vision? Just a thought.

  • Comment number 5.

    Griffin: "I am not a Nazi and never have been," he said, adding: "I am the most loathed man in Britain in the eyes of Britain's Nazis."

    He thinks everybody else loves him!

    More importantly does he actually reject the Jaded_Jean National Socialist tosh or is he being legalistic. "I am not a Nazi ... I am a National Socialist"?

  • Comment number 6.

    #3 jaded_Jean

    "Some of us got that months ago"

    Some got that there was a Holocaust at the Nuremburg trials - referred to in glowing terms by Griffin who is "not a Nazi".

    But then you have claimed variously not to be a Nazi or the BNP - you are just a National Socialist who reveres Hitler and wants to see more BNP coverage. But the whining BNP now complain that sob, sob, sob they get too MUCH coverage.

    I don't know you revere one of the most evil ideologies in history that left some seventy five million dead and people seem to be set against you.

    Go figure huh!

  • Comment number 7.

    I assume that the programme tonight will nail the Labour spin of the current economic catastrophe as a "unique global event" hold sway.

    It would be peachy too if you could get across how the Nazi SA murdered political opponents - who were often leftist "statists" - and that most Old Labour "statists" queued up to fight the Nazis in WWII and some in Spain.

    But then I am being particular as there are some who are incapable of grasping simple historical facts and instead tend to "hysterical facts" like the BNP Barnbrook and his non-existent murders.

    "The bells, the bells ...." and dyslexia made him do it.

    I have known dyslexic people and they never had the same problem.

  • Comment number 8.

    Poor old Griffin - will his "Kristallnacht" experience push him into the hands of the Nazis and away from the democratic process?

    Who cares as I don't think he will be doubling the BNP ratings and there will now be a much greater focus and cooperation between the parties to expose the lies of the BNP.

    Cameron should maybe start thinking about a new tradition where we have a National Holiday to mark the first day of a general election and we celebrate democracy and those like the media, armed forces and the police that preserve it and reject those undemocratic forces that seek to replace it via lies and subterfuge.

    Then of course we should get down to the full blooded political contest and scrutiny of policies and personalities.

  • Comment number 9.

    I would much like someone to explain why its necessary to break the link to Walker Evans photograph of Allie Mae Burroughs - its considered one of the most important photographic portraits ever made .

  • Comment number 10.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 11.

    The link hasn't been deliberately stopped. The coding for the blog comments just doesn't like the colon in the web address. It thinks the path stops at the colon.

  • Comment number 12.

    #9 Streetphotobeing

    Don't think it is deliberate. More the way the code is split up esp with Wiki. Notice it broke at the :

    In the past I've posted links from Wiki and they've done the same. JJ likes posting specific to an 'internal' Wiki and occasionally they break at a division.

    If you copy and paste your link into the browser it does take you straight there.

    Don't know the exact reason, but it's not just you when using these sorts of Wiki links.

    Celtic Lion

  • Comment number 13.

    I don't have an opinion on the matter.

  • Comment number 14.

    Nos 11 and 12

    Thanks for that, I see what you mean now.

  • Comment number 15.

    Nos 4

    Having said that, for me Dorothea Lange was every bit equal to the best male photographers on the planet :

  • Comment number 16.

    KCL (#12) Do you mean the one which induces us all to become anarchists in the interest of markets? My efforts at counter-conditioning will probably go over most folks' heads I suspect?

  • Comment number 17.


    We are still the animals we always were. Animals are programmed to eat and reach puberty - then to fight and reproduce. Does that resonate with you?

    Once upright, mobile, continent and verbal (temporarily de-animalised) Humans do quite well in the 'higher brain' arena (subject to JJ's constraints). But puberty puts a massive spoke in the wheel - THE ANIMAL IS BACK, AND THIS TIME IT'S SERIOUS!. One way to handle this shambles it heavy taboos and penalties. Perversely, WE have made a 'Church' of aberration and deviance, it has massive attendance figures, yielding steady decline in overall human (humane)competence. Overpopulation, abuse of money, violence as entertainment, wars to solve problems, multifaceted coupling - the list is endless. We just can't hack it.

    Anyone think Messiah Blair has the answer? Yet he is prancing the globe at our expense. Does that not confirm OUR ineptitude? Blair is the over-ornate, obscenely expensive, alcove-icon of the Church of A and D; the Church of OUR ABERRANCE AND DEVIANCE!

  • Comment number 18.

    Nos 16

    'Don't flatter yourself'


    Do hope your ok and not nodded off in some cinema
    after all the Griffin excitement.

  • Comment number 19.

    iplayer still not showing thurs NN.

  • Comment number 20.

    streetphotobeing (#18) So you consider yourself counter-conditioned? We can look forward to some sensible, appropropiate, socially/politically astute, posts, in future then?

  • Comment number 21.

    why is thurs NN not available?

  • Comment number 22.

    last year british gas sent out a chart showing the july high spike in price and saying this was the reason the bills have to go up. Well gas came down to 7 years lows and we got a miserly and grudingly price reduction. This year british gas sent out data explaining the bill is only 60% related to the wholesale price and the rest is govt tax and stuff.

    something about cake and eating it? Heads they win tails we lose?

    the extortion played upon the british people by energy companies is legal. there is no regulator who can control prices.

    the govt still believe in market fundamentalism as the best organiser of a nations resources [see adam smith]. why? where is the evidence for it? ALL the evidence is that it leads to extortion and bad practice and greed.

  • Comment number 23.

    A woman in the audience seethed because Mr Straw had been using the term Afro Caribeans, she wanted him to use the description African Caribean.

    And that epitomises the problem .......

    Whom runs the Agenda?

    What is the Agenda?

    And where is the Agenda going?

    ( Why did she not - should she have - ask to be described as British?)

  • Comment number 24.

    The most famous photo from Lange of Florence Owens Thompson :

    " Florence was quoted as saying "I wish she [Lange] hadn't taken my picture. I can't get a penny out of it. She didn't ask my name. She said she wouldn't sell the pictures. She said she'd send me a copy. She never did."

  • Comment number 25.

    Nos 24

    "a print of the photograph with Lange's handwritten notes and signature sold in 1998 for $244,500 at Sotheby's New York."

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 28.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 29.

    I'm trying very hard to stick with this interesting discussion about the crash, but just as a speaker is coming to the end of making their point, somebody buts in and ruins it......usually Kirsty. For heaven's sake STOP IT!

  • Comment number 30.

    Sounds like Kirsty hasn't been well and still isn't. Hope you get well soon.

  • Comment number 31.


    There is no escaping the truth of 'Cult of the Individual' in broadcasting, when we send 'the talent' across the world to do a job that many already there are informed in and skilled at. Still living within the lie.

  • Comment number 32.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 33.

    One of the best blogs on the BBC - with subsequent sensible varied discussion as posts - I have seen in a long time is that of Mark Easton’s today.

    It is now closed for further comment.

    If it were possible to precis what the blog, and posts, were saying I would suggest .....

    Let’s have a sensible discussion.

    As said .....

    It is now closed for further comment.

    26. At 10:10pm on 23 Oct 2009, JadedJean wrote

    Sadly JadedJean .......

    Some people see no personal gain in getting the message!

    How sad!

  • Comment number 34.

    Most excellent program for the anniversary of the Wall Street Crash. Bravo and thank you.

  • Comment number 35.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 36.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 37.

    #18 from mimpromptu
    Oh, yes, I did, Streetphotobeing. I had a wonderful snooze to Tarantino's 'Inglorious Basterds'. On the way to one of the World Cinemas I stopped off in what I call a Blue Moon pub and had half a pint of bitter. It was quite crowded with no place on the terrace so I sat on the side and listened to Leonard Cohen's 'On that Day, The Day They Wounded New York' and again to his 'Villanelle For Our Time'. The two authors are just not in the same league with Tarantino going for flashy trashy show off of violence while Leonard for truthful humane questioning of man's cruelty, emotions and fragile faith and hope of mankind coming eventually to its senses . He just seems to hit it with me each time I listen to him and I repeat 'he is my kind of man'.

    What happened on ice today I'll leave for tomorrow perhaps or maybe not, we'll see. One thing for sure, I went for it and hope it did look expressive and even perhaps exciting. Nobody said anything, I'm just going by how I felt.

    Have a good night, Streetphotobeing.

    P.S. Do you know what Mr Singleton is on about when he talks about 'the animal'? Is it anything to do with Madam Mim? Why don't they have a bonk with some bitch then?

  • Comment number 38.

    from mimpromptu
    From my own perspective, Streetphotobeing, I don't think things are moving fast enough. I hope it makes some sense to you.

  • Comment number 39.

    from mimpromptu
    Streetphotobeing re: jj
    Have you heard of a hyena making desperate noises
    Looking for an outlet to his animal foibles?
    Why not find a nice bitch and have then a go
    There are many around, it's not for him, this glow.

  • Comment number 40.

    from mimpromptu
    Earlier today, as mentioned on the previous page, I sent Obama a message but it looks like he is just another political sell-out so sadly I'll have to ignore him from now. I do have much more important things to do rather than supporting ignorant politicians. Their problem, not mine.

  • Comment number 41.

    Enjoyed tonights special. Paul Mason looked like an Englisman in New York' Kirsty looked good under American studio lights and Schama, he who made History cool again, always gets my attention.

    Anyhow, the alternative news and research media pumps out another documentary:

    Alex Jones this week released 'Fall of the Republic'. Wall ST, Obama, world Goverment and all the bits in between ( my synops on account I ain't watched it..other than the first 10 mins but its already causing a storm) Its on You Tube and its in 14 parts.

    Failing that, You can always watch BBCs newsround...and be spoon fed your news. 6pm and 9pm weekdays and 10pm weekends.

  • Comment number 42.

    Another world-beater of a BBC programme... and again- from over here in North America, and particularly from 'american-media-saturated British Columbia, Canada- some of the BBC's best programmes such as Newsnight are no longer available through the Internet... without going trough some legally dodgy strategies...

    This, as the BBC iplayer is currently set up so that BBC video/TV offerings- such as Newsnight- are not playable outside of the UK....

    Although a condensed 'summary of each week's best Newsnight programmes' is available each weekend to persons residing in North America- from their cable/Satellite TV service providers->> through the excellent "BBC World News" TV channel- most of the BBC's best programmes (and especially those that have constructive social/societal themes) such as: Newsnight, Panorama, Earth Report, HardTalk, FastTrack, Dateline London, World Debate, Click and many others) ARE NOT REVIEWED IN LOCAL HARD-COPY NEWSPAPERS, MAGAZINES & SIMILAR PUBLICATIONS PREVIOUS TO THE RESPECTIVE PROGRAMME'S BROADCAST...

    Consequently, many potential viewers over here are not aware of these programmes being broadcast and end up with the usual crappy fare from 'entertainment without redeeming qualities' media networks for their 'TV fix'...

    The BBC iPlayer ought to be re-programmed so that it works outside of the UK- but with SHORT, TASTEFUL advertisements played ONLY ONCE OR TWICE per hour of use to 'outside of the UK iplayer users...

    The BBC's public-relations/international marketing dept ought to make an effort to get the BBC's world-beating TV/video AND radio/audio programmes reviewed in outside-of-the-UK hard-copy publications- in advance of broadcast- on at least a weekly basis, per market area....

    Surely this would constructive for the country marketing itself- and its industries generally, and also would be a method of raising financial revenues for the BBC through to-be-expected increased numbers of people worldwide viewing/listening to BBC TV/video and Radio/audio programmes...

    Roderick V. Louis,
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

  • Comment number 43.

    So are the BNP wrong to have a photo of Churchill on their home page?

    And remember this is a guardian report, so must be true.

  • Comment number 44.

    From the Telegraph

    In a vindication of the BBC’s stance, however, the poll showed that nearly three quarters of the public supported the decision to invite Mr Griffin to appear, compared with 63 per cent when the same question was asked last week.

    "Labour encouraged mass immigration to help socially engineer a “multicultural” country and to try to “rub the Right’s nose in diversity”, according to Andrew Neather, a former adviser to Tony Blair."

    In my ignorance I've never heard of this man Neather before. Read this in the Telegraph, is this man right? Why have I never heard this quote before!

  • Comment number 45.

    It's a shame Mark's blog was closed. I think it must have been deemed 'too near-legislation'.

    Language is important - language carries ideology, memes, and memes drive cultural evolution. So if we want a hand in our cultural evolution it would be worth sorting out a shared lexicon.

    Despite Shakespeare's shrewd approach to romance, if we all called a rose something different, ultimately we would end up saying 'you know that flower with the well-prickly stems, great smell, and a large head of soft petals, that work remarkably well as a decoration when strewn on a white tableclothed table?'.

    The story is not so much about 'race' as identity, which has a biological element that we call ethnicity, and a cultural component or belief system(s) stemming from terroir/nationality on the one hand and creeds/doctrines on the other.

    English culture is demonstrably multi-racial because many immigrants integrated before multi-culturalism began in the 1980s. But for those who still bemoan the fact that immigration is changing British culture - it isn't. British cultureS include English, Welsh, Scottish, Asian, African, African-Caribbean, Chinese, Muslim, Christian, Atheist, Humanist etc. British culture (singular) refers to this mix of overlapping groups. Most of these cultures are multi-racial - Asian culture is multi-racial, Muslim culture is multi-racial etc.

    Larger categories are used in monitoring but these larger categories have gradually been and are still being deconstructed. One day I may put on the form Ethnic Group 67 and those collating the data will know what that means. Many countries went through this transition years ago

    James Lovelock says that it is not only inevitable but necessary for much much more immigration to occur before the world ecosytem stabilises again and he acknowledges that it will be harsh but says it will produce new forms of creativity.

  • Comment number 46.

    Live TV is not good for the immune system. NN location stuff is almost always technically terrible - last night Kirsty had to contend with a mike going dead and then for a second it seemed like Schama's had gone dead and maybe the whole lot. I hope you lot at NN, her PA, Jeremy and who ever look after Kirsty a bit, its not good .

    I'm off for a while mim look after you.

  • Comment number 47.

    Plums shall not rot!!

  • Comment number 48.

    from mimpromptu

    Haven’t we had a beautiful autumn, Streetphotobeing?
    With all its colours history's in the making
    Though not the way cookieducker's pretending.
    Ah, the 2 fingers his people are showing!?

    Methinks they don't know what they are doing.
    The whole thing is simply far too debasing
    For Madam Mim to carry on watching
    She much prefers gliding and twirling.

    Be it on ice or be it with rhymes
    Plus snapping away momentous times.
    Both the ephemeral and the eternal
    Knitted together with those of the carnal.

    I hope you find it pleasurable what you're planning to do, Streetphotobeing.

  • Comment number 49.

    #45 wappaho

    James Lovelock says that it is not only inevitable but necessary for much much more immigration to occur before the world ecosytem stabilises again and he acknowledges that it will be harsh but says it will produce new forms of creativity.

    Do you think it will lead to the eventual dumbing down of western societies as suggested by JJ? I hadn't noticed England become particularly brighter, in fact the total opposite. And creativity seems to have vanished, I can't say I'm ever impressed with the Turner Prize candidates, with the exception of Grayson Perry. I regard him in the mold of the great english eccentric! ; )

    As an example of changing ecosysems. Do you think this means that eventually Bangladesh which is almost below sea level and has around 17 million people will have to move into India?

  • Comment number 50.

    Hhhmmm looks as though other people have caught up with my quote above!

  • Comment number 51.

    And an open door for Romanian Romanys

    Aren't our judges wonderful! : ) They don't live in the real world as the rest of us do, they are so well paid, they live in a luxuary world. Or have an alterior motive to force us into what they personally want.

  • Comment number 52.


    Well posted Ecolizzie. Personally, all I want to address is head-in-the-sand NONTHINK. If I am into oppression and deportation, again, I will apply it exclusively to NONTHINK. I tried to address one part of this time-bomb (#35/6) but, clearly, I stated my question far too unambiguously.

    I have personal experience - in the sphere of human behaviour - that is relevant and telling, but 1984 is upon us . . .

    I don't think either Churchill or Lovelock was/is a better guesser than I am. Knowing the future is difficult - knowing the madness of PC in the present is all-too-easy (except, perhaps, for the Blogdog?)

  • Comment number 53.


    They just keep coming out of the (rotten) woodwork Lizzie. They say Blair was lazy and shallow. Do read Mullin diaries if you have time. In a very ingenuous way (or was he the ultimate Machiavellian?) they tell all, and though I say it myself, confirm much that I had deduced about the Westminster GAME.

  • Comment number 54.


    Cooking with Gas Lizzie (there goes your footprint - unless it's bio).

    As said before, my observation is that DIFFERENCE destabilises AT AN ANIMAL LEVEL. When some cerebrally-based judgment declares such mixing 'OK', mayhem follows. Most (possibly all) crime is animal-based but law/'justice' is - broadly speaking - cerebrally applied. Until we acknowledge our true nature (we could start with my #35/6!) misery will increase and endure.

  • Comment number 55.

    #49 & #51 from mimpromptu
    Interesting that you quote James Lovelock talking of the hope for the mankind resting on multiculteral future. When I was still living surrounded by intellectual artists, I remember a then friend of mine (Turkish) talking exactly along similar lines.
    With regard to Lord Justice Stadlen's decision, whatever the pros and cons of having travellers living close by, it shows his humanity, considering that one traveller was pregnant and that there was a very sick person amongst them. So not all is lost on the human front, thank the Lord.

  • Comment number 56.

    #52 & #53 from mimpromptu
    Mr Barrie Singleton
    The 1984 problem is not all due to politicians, is it? It is maddening to think that so many politicians, intellectuals, director generals and journalists have been allowing themselves to succumb to delusions of grandure to a shallow schizophrenic but the ultimate responsibility rests on his shoulders and on those of 2 of his 'colleagues'.

  • Comment number 57.

    44 ..Why have I never heard this quote before! ..

    its an old idea. If a nation is formed out of a common feeling among a group of people then one of the ways to effect change in that nation is to affect the common feeling by changing the make up of that group of people.

    so in the 70's i remember reading a socialist plan to flood the uk with migrants to change that common feeling that would break the unity of the prevailing consensus [which they wanted to change for their own revolutionary ends].

    given much of nulabour are old marxists and what not they would have been aware of this plan of mass migration as a means to effect change in uk society. making it ripe for socialist internationalist thinking.

    and its worked. in the uk there is now no longer any common feeling and there is a fracturing of the consensus. we are now a nation at war with itself. we spend billions a year on internal security to protect us from 'british citizens', we have a rise of neofascist parties as 'mainstream' and society is split into a hundred different 'common feeling groups' who do not talk nor understand each other. Govt polices have encouraged people not to integrate but to remain in their ghettos.

    unlimited migration is just as an extremist [and dangerous to the state] policy as no migration. The socialists were lucky. The EU has this extremist unlimited migration policy so they could say all they are doing is abiding by uk law. The merchant class want migrants as cheap flexible labour so through greed they were also doing the socialist bidding to create the conditions that will break the common feeling and so the common consensus.

    so 30 years ago this policy of mass migration as a catalyst to change the common feeling from which a state grows by changing the composition of that group was well known among those who wanted to break the british state establishment consensus and so effect change.

  • Comment number 58.

    curious thurs NN with emily is not available? is there some contractual copyright that prevents it?

  • Comment number 59.

    #57 bookhimdano Thanks very much for that explanation, it was very clearly written, and makes sense to me. Most of us are too busy getting on with our lives, and trying to have a carer, or bring up a family, we don't notice what governance is doing to us until it is too late. Now I think about it, I can see how this was done! : ( And yes social cohesion has completely disappeared here, look how every immigrant thinks we must adhere to their view of the world, and their religion and politics. HHhmmm methinks the BNP have hit some very raw nerves amongst the english, might be an idea to change their name, ENP, after all we have the SNP. ; )

  • Comment number 60.

    Barrie you write so very well, and are so witty! (I presume I will always have your support now! ;o) )

    Yes I think we forget we are all animal really, I don't think there are any wise people left in England.

    I've never, until recently, realised how much we are censored and controlled, so have I become wise, or just very very cynical.

  • Comment number 61.

    bookemdano (#57) "given much of nulabour are old marxists and what not they would have been aware of this plan of mass migration as a means to effect change in uk society. making it ripe for socialist internationalist thinking."

    Nothing to challenge in the thrust of your posts, except to urge you to note that Trotskyites were also 'Marxists' but they were/are anti-statists. Think of them as the Militant Tendency who undermined Labour. Think of them as New left, New Labour, Neo-Conservatives. Think of all Western 'Marxists' as Trotskyites or Neo-conservatives (anarchists) and you will see the true nature of 'anarchism in the UK' since at least the 70s. What was being taken down? Anarchism was promoted in the 70s by the music business, controlled by whom? To what end? Individualism is anarchism. It is at odds with social duty to one another.

    In recent times we have witnessed an assault on state education via the salami technique used everywhere else to undermine the state aka Public Services. It's as insidious as it is relentless. By abandoning Key Stage SATs, many schools stopped 'teaching to the test' in what used to be good 'teaching to the test', i.e they used to teach the National Curriculum....When KS3 SATs went many stopped teaching parts of the National Curriculum! National Socialism is quite innocent. It is just standardization of practice across a large group, for the benefit of the group. Sniping at bits of that in the NHS, education, Royal Mail, utilities etc via Permanent Revolution has one clear agenda, namely privatization - i.e Balkanization, the destruction of the 'greater family' of the UK. This is Trotskyist Anarchism at work. It is why Naked Capitalism and Jewish International Bolshevism (Trotsky-Zinoviev Comintern) are in fact two sides of the same, individualistic/narcissistic, coin. This has nothing in common with socialism or Stalinism (the PRC today or Old Labour). The latter has its roots in British, not Jewish socialism. Even the original Marxists were in London after all!

    [fortune cookie on]

    We are seeing not too bright immigrant BME groups being abused like children in order to Balkanize Britain. They want their identity, but at the expense of being British.... They are just not bright enough, as a body, to see what they are doing, it is anarchistic. Lowish IQ is like being infantile/adolescent - hence narcissism is an 'infantile disorder', and as we know, one can't put an old (wiser) head on young shoulders...

    [fortune cookie off]

  • Comment number 62.

    ecolizy (#60) "so have I become wise, or just very very cynical."

    I suspect you have always been 'wise' ecolizzy. Don't become very cynicial, just continue being very active. This requires group effort - a critical mass - albeit a self-critical one ;-)

  • Comment number 63.

    Have Your Say (But BBC will have its way)

    Most posters here seem to agree that attempts to demonise BNP achieved an own goal. We are indeed fortunate that NN moderation is reasonably tolerant: perhaps a benefit of outsourcing?

    For a broader view I also look to BBC's Have Your Say, which has the advantage of having a 'Recommend' button to indicate level of support, but disadvanteges of a limit of 500 keytaps, plus lengthy and (apparently) manipulative monitoring, by limiting choice of topics available for Have Your Say, and delaying posts to distort support.

    The most 'recommended' posts, now approaching 1000 each were:

    "Nick Griffin stands up and says what a lot of people in the UK think on subjects like immigrations, Muslims and homosexuality, but they are too frightened to say it because of political correctness. He's to be applauded for his openness and honesty - unlike the rest of our mainstream parties."

    "People in Britain are too scared to say what they really feel. I want our country to be our country regardless of colour. If you live in Britain you should live by our rules. I don't want to have to not say things because it may offend another religion or not say a poem with the words "black sheep" in it because it may offend. This is our country. I want it back!!! This debate has brougfht it to light and the BBC were right to allow it". and

    "How laughable that Jack Straw accused Nick Griffin of not answering a question! Griffin critiqued Islam, rightly pointing out that it is at odds with democracy and women's equality, and it is reported as 'Griffin attacks Islam!' Do not take the public for fools BBC. We saw who the anti-democracy, anti-free speech thugs were, they were rioting outside Television Centre. I would not be surprised to see this blatant left wing bias drive many thousands to vote BNP".

    My comment is still 'Awaiting Moderation'(?)although some 25 pages of others were posted later than mine, for which I am awaiting explanation. Perhaps the NN blogdog will accept it:-

    "Early in the 'show' I thought BNP would be wiped out by the interrogation treatment; but it became so obviously set up to stifle serious debate on current issues that it backfired.
    An Own Goal by the 'lynch mob'?
    BBC was right to resist pressure to drop Griffin;
    The 'anti's' wrong to distort the true purpose of Question Time;
    Reaction: proof that the public are not being treated to 'openness and transparency';
    Result: more support for BNP and other 'English first' parties."
    COMMENT STATUS: Awaiting moderation

    Despite several e-mails I have never received an explanation from BBC as to why their newsreaders read out 'random'(?) e-mails rather than quote those most recommended by their viewers and listeners, surely a better indication of Public Opinion, and a less questionable practice?

  • Comment number 64.

    #59 from mimpromptu
    Although originally I was an immigrant and to some degree still am, it is a few English people who for years have been trying to impose their views on me rather than the other way.
    Having realised that others seem to be listening to what I have to say and watching what I am up to, I thought I might as well share my musings and arm waving the way I really feel and not to the dictats of anybody else.
    My position has always been clear, take it or leave it. I'm not into imposing any views on anybody but I seem to be paying a very, very harsh price for simply what I am and how I am despite all the attention given to me. I have no access to any other buttons than on my blouses, trousers, Philips laptop and iphone.
    It's not my fault that I seem to be stirring people's emotions and am not ready to give up being authentic. Well, that's how I think I am at least.
    You're right about Mr Barrie Singleton, he can be supportive but personally I don't rely on any of his help or anything like that. It's just sometimes interesting to read his posts.
    I sincerely hope things will look better for you in the future, Lizzy, and that you'll sort out your domestic problems and find interesting things to occupy yourself with. There are so many fine and worthwhile things one can do with and for others.

  • Comment number 65.


    You, of all posters Lizzie, know you will get my support for just as long as you adhere to rational, self-enquiring, cogent posts. (How's that for reciprocation?) Fortunately, you cannot appeal to my animal, as I have my fantasy-life well under control, and a good grounding in human behaviour (affording considerable diversion when reading this blog/forum!) Of course, if we met in the supermarket, and shared a 'family face' - Oh no - not again!

    Standing back - objectively: HomSap has used his big brain to take a series of steps unconducive to sustainable, quiescence. Whether from fear or ignorance, the dumb consensus is that this is progress - forward motion. No other animal does this, to my knowledge. If you are a group of Galapagos finch, blown to another island, the new habitat will shape you up or 'ship you out'. Clearly such an approach to change, works. We Humans are all, now, thoroughly out of shape and (ironically) 'shipping in' otherness, like there is 'no tomorrow'. Taking that objective view - I doubt there is, at least, not in the current configuration.

    With 'worldly things' as the are - I'll be a Cynic (but eschewing the OCD extremes).

    PS My guess is that the dumb Greek masses saw unattainable worth in the Cynic stance, so applied their designation as a term of abuse. 'Twas ever thus.'

  • Comment number 66.


    Hi IDG2! Just had a thought. When the Blogdog has a long nap before opening his canines to release a post, he should RE-POST IT IN THE CURRENT SLOT. Don't hold your breath.

  • Comment number 67.

    #59 ecolizzy "HHhmmm methinks the BNP have hit some very raw nerves amongst the english, might be an idea to change their name, ENP, after all we have the SNP. ; )"

    That's why I have welcomed the recent growth of parties and organisation with 'English' or 'England' in their title. e.g English Democratic Party.

    We are neither a race nor a religion, yet we all know what defines us, and nobody can masquerade as English simply by attending a 'welcome ceremony'. This would avoid the racism slur and the challenge of 'there are no indigenous people in Britain'.

    As any discrimination by race or religion has now been denied us by law, the party could change name as you suggest and build on the boost it has obviously received. They or other newer parties could perhaps also apply membership criteria such as requiring evidence of contibutions to UK taxes for a minimum number of years, unless the new Equalities legislation plans to stamp out all distinguishing characteristics in its multicultural melting pot.

  • Comment number 68.


    A lot of recent brain-scanning seems to indicate much is revealed when you get past the devious human exterior. NOT SUGGESTING INFALLIBLE!

    When it comes to bogus tolerance of 'this and that', I would put Jack Straw (for a start) in a scanner, and test his lovely, 'all-embracing' credentials.

    So much more I could add but Blogdog is too close to Pavlovdog these days.

  • Comment number 69.

    Hhhhmm everyone seems on top form this morning, interesting posts. And some funny ones. Yes Indi I've been reading that Have Your Say, nothing wrong with your post, but I've given up there, they are very strict. And I love how you're moderated pages and pages later, so why bother posting. This is a very good description of the situation Indi...

    We are neither a race nor a religion, yet we all know what defines us, and nobody can masquerade as English simply by attending a 'welcome ceremony'. This would avoid the racism slur and the challenge of 'there are no indigenous people in Britain'.

  • Comment number 70.

    Mim the twirler, much as I love you, you are typical of all immigrants. I've no objection to you living here, and I like the Polish, they've had a hard time. The problem is you all think you are far more important than the indigenous population, yes I welcome your views, but you don't read properly what the rest of us write. You must try to understand the idiom of the sentence, not just the words, and now I'm sounding like JJ! oops ; )

    Just to set you straight, my children are grown up and all have professional jobs, and I'm an elderly person as the delightful Ms Bakewell would say.

  • Comment number 71.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 72.

    #61 JJ Hhhmmm and as I had the best years of my life in the '60s I think I now see where it all went wrong. It was us, the me,me,me, generation, who had money and only thought of enjoying ourselves, bugger society we all said, it's all about freedom, free love, drink, drugs and sex. I don't think the British have got over it yet. Is this when are selfishness started? I also remember the serious '50s and shortages, and Cuban missile crisis, I thought the world was going to end, did everybody, so it's live now and don't worry about tomorrow.

  • Comment number 73.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 74.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 75.

    #67 indignantindegene

    !"That's why I have welcomed the recent growth of parties and organisation with 'English' or 'England' in their title. e.g English Democratic Party.

    We are neither a race nor a religion, yet we all know what defines us, and nobody can masquerade as English simply by attending a 'welcome ceremony'. This would avoid the racism slur and the challenge of 'there are no indigenous people in Britain'."

    So the English Defence League shown with their faces covered with their balaclavas are right up your street? Thats what the country needs - maybe they could start patrolling the streets like the SA?

    The race issue would still be there as you imply that those people of race born in this country are not full citizens and that people could not be invited to this country on the basis that they are equal due to their race. A white Australian would be OK and a refugee from Darfur would not?

    I could get into the whole fact that Griffin is not a Nazi; the BNP is not a Nazi; the Jaded_Jean cohorts are not Nazi's or the BNP yet on this page you get an almost daily dose of the virtues of National Socialism and the virtues of Hitlers policies.

    The far right dream is of a race war and National Socialism replacing democracy.

    Clearly if a civil war did kick off it would be exceptionally violent and ruthless as democrats know exactly what the Nazis are about and what they would do given the chance. The BNP obviously knows that they know.

    The interesting thing will be to see whether the far right hysteria at their success creates tensions within the cult that leads to its destruction from within.

  • Comment number 76.

    #63 indignantindegene

    "Most posters here seem to agree that attempts to demonise BNP achieved an own goal. "

    Other posters blessed with healthy cynicism would suggest the latter group are the BNP as they daily promote National Socialism, a racial view of politics consistent with the Nazis and admire Hitler. Holocaust "agnosticism" and portrayal of Jews as an "internal political and economic enemy" really are signals as to what these people are like.

    Some share characteristics in common with Nick Griffin. For instance one Holocaust "agnostic" had an RAF grandfather in WWII. Tail gunner I believe.

  • Comment number 77.


    An animal is said to be empowered when in its own territory, and an invader disempowered. Strength of ownership, I would presume, increases with length of tenure and successful defence (also excreta deposited and, for human animals: dead interred).

    Clearly an animal 'knows' when it is indigenous. As we are animals, this will also apply, fundamentally, to us. BUT - as I am at pains to point out: we are The Ape Confused by Language and further confused by cleverness leading to the means of massive influx by 'others' and confounding PC invention. I suggest, that while IDG2 and I KNOW we are indigenous (not denying all you others) there are many among us carrying degrees of uncertainty, that can come to the fore when society is stressed (as is coming?) There are, of course, ways of disguising uncertainty though, paradoxically, animal-instinct can often see through such.

    As I said above: we need to admit to our animal/cerebral mismatch if angst is to be reduced.

  • Comment number 78.

    #65/68 Barrie


    "Fortunately, you cannot appeal to my animal, as I have my fantasy-life well under control, and a good grounding in human behaviour"

    Come on, lighten up, resistance can cause a fuse to blow, better to liberate the libido; it can be very illuminating.

    "Standing back - objectively:....No other animal does this, to my knowledge"

    Teilhard de Chardin (in The Phenomenon of Man) believed that when humankind began living in the state of REFLECTIVENESS, our progress was inevitable; we would enjoy ‘not only survival, but super-life’.

    Hence my Transcendental Meditation, in which I can and frequently do, reflect on what a fantastic super-life I (and Western Society generally) have to enjoy. That includes revelling in the animal within, deciding that I will continue (as all of nature) to choose which breeds I will associate with, which individuals I decide are superior or inferior, and even which man-made laws I consider as an ass, and ignore.

    On reflection, I'll supress any further details, lest the blogdog clamps his jaws on my bone of contention. I'll join the queue patiently waiting for him to release my gems awaiting moderation: after you with yours.

  • Comment number 79.

    #32 jaded_Jean

    "Studio guests who really don't know what they're talking about any more than the wo/man in the street, all talking absolute nonsense, with no shame at all...."

    Hmm, you would be the same Jaded_Jean who thinks the Holocaust was made up to put people off statists and that any violence was not carried out by the Nazis (statists) but by the Russians who were Stalinists and therefore "statists" in your view.

    Meanwhile Old Labour ("statists") were at war with Nazi Germany.

    You feel the BNP - who aren't a Nazi Party and therefore in your view not "statist" - are a natural home for these "statist" voters.

    Many of them would not understand that you would replace democracy with National Socialism and hence their votes would be their last acts in a democracy.

    But you yourself are not a Nazi and you aren't the BNP.

    I refer back to the post some time ago where you called me an "anarchist and Trotskyite" who "paints Hitler as darkly as possible for party political reasons".

    Talking nonsense with no shame at all .... it does sound so very familiar.

  • Comment number 80.

    I YIELD IDG2 (#78)

    I wish I had thought of the 'bone of contention'. Nice!

    Wouldn't it be great if we could throw the Blogdog a diverting bone and then slip a contentious post past, while he is chewing.

    Not sure you caught my drift. Also suspect T de Ch (by my reading) was not entirely free from religious tenets and constraints, when making his judgements.

    6 billion + on the planet - most moving away from 'reflectiveness' hmmmm.

  • Comment number 81.

    #75/76 Gangof1(you really are!) No comment; I've said it all before - and so have you.

  • Comment number 82.

    thegangofone (#79) "Talking nonsense with no shame at all .... it does sound so very familiar."

    Yup! :-(

  • Comment number 83.

    The National Socialists who post on here often try to stress how close the "statist" Stalinists and National Socialists were - probably in an attempt to dupe disillusioned Labour voters.

    The tyrant Stalin at the Seventeenth Party Congress in January 1934 said:

    "Of course we are far from enthusiastic about the fascist regime in Germany. But fascism is not the issue, if only for the reason that fascism in Italy, for example, has not prevented the Soviet Union from establishing the best relations with that country."

    So there was no ideological agreement - just practical statecraft.

    Some may also consider that the Spanish Civil War 1936-1939 (perhaps a precursor to the far right dream of a British race war leading to National Socialism?) further dampened that enthusiasm as the Nazis and Soviets were on different sides.

    Still more may say that Hitler invading the Soviet Union and killing some twenty five million "sub-human Slavs" may have dented that enthusiasm still further and may explain why Germany was divided for many decades.

    The Old Labour elements of the WWII government were not known to be "enthusiastic" about the "statist" Nazis that they were at war with curiously.

    Still the National Socialists who post on this page aren't Nazis - they just revere Hitler.

    The BNP are not Nazi's and there seems little evidence that they are "statists".

  • Comment number 84.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 85.

    #60 Ecolizzy

    You are correct I moved to Scotland

    #78 Indy2

    Teilhard de Chardin (in The Phenomenon of Man)
    Important influence on me. Amazing how he invented the internet all those years ago, he just called it noosphere.

    Celtic Lion

    eltic Lion

  • Comment number 86.


    The Internet: Not so much a noosphere more a nihilosphere, Celtic. I don't see any sign of the Omega Point on the horizon. I think all 6+ billion are going to end up on the 'Wrong Side of History' - even Magic Obama.

  • Comment number 87.

    thegangofone (83) Read Sidney and Beatrice Webb's 'Soviet Communism: A New Civilization' and look up Clause IV of The Labour Party. Read this too.

    You have to remember that there was a power struggle in the USSR after Lenin's death, that the original Bolshevikswerre jut anarchists sent in t o get Russia out of WWI, and that this struggle between the original Jewish Bolsheviks and those wanting to establish 'Socialism in One Country', i.e the Russian socialists, continued throughout the 1930s. Sometimes countries which have the same ideology do go to war with each other. As far as I am concerend, it is still not entirely clear to all historians (or intelligence services) what exactly happened between Germany and the USSR from June 1941 onwards and why. I suggest you give this some thought, instead of being so abusive.

    In the end, perhaps you should be focusing on what's happening in Britain today? Are Public Services being built up, or is there an anarchistic process of privatisation being promulgated by all three liberal-democractic parties? If the latter is the case, why is it being done? Why do parties trying to thwart it elicit such hissy-fits?

  • Comment number 88.

    I can buy a green light bulb for thirty quid, someones making a fortune on our guilt of killing the planet. The next time Newsnight does a global warming slot I'm gonna be outside the studios protesting this bogus science - can i say 'bogus' as I've heard that's an illegal word now. If you can't spot that the fat sweating fraudulent bum Al Gore as a con man, your without doubt doomed to believe that Aunty beeb is an impartiality driven corporation. I see the Griffin experience has left the BBC with a nasty rash and no amount of ointment applied is gonna clear it up. More worryingly the Beeb has shown clear signs of that serious illness akin to that dreadful disease alzheimer's. Maybe aunty Beeb needs to spend its final days in a care home away from the rest of us, we could sell off her assets and spend the cash on some carbon footprint offsetting light bulbs.

    Out of control Immigration was Govt engineered as reported today - a Govt surprises with that. All Labour has achieved is put a far right political party on the map. Not many bright lights in this Labour Govt...I mean, look at Jack the hack.

    Is Obama just another puppet president and dancing to the banksters tune in Wall St? is your mind manipulated by dark hidden forces; machinations from the banking cartels making you except willingly their global governance agenda? Stuff Paul Mason won't go near in reporting is in the following link. Sadly no mention of Blair becoming president of Europe in this documentary - something that should send a chill down your spine but since we are too busy watching xfactor on ice...

    The fall of the republic:

  • Comment number 89.

    GO1: someone helped themselves to my Gibson sunburst 83 and am deeply upset - am missing her but now that I've read your post...i can finally raise a smile...thanks buddie..the clouds have lifted:)

  • Comment number 90.


    Right Idea Wrong Implementation

    Have to agree with you Barrie. This little planet did OK for billions of years without a noosphere. Then one came along, which was still not much of a problem.

    Still find it hard to get across to the greens, climate changers etc al that what they are addressing is not the problem. The problem and cause is the poisoning and contamination of the noosphere with lies, false ideas, mistaken beliefs and the rest of the tat many wrongly think is reality-these propagated to even greater concentration by an unquestioning and even irresponsible media.

    The Omega Point being a universal concept doesn't necessarily mean it will have to happen on our planet. We could just be one of the failed experiments in progress to achieve it.

    Perhaps somewhere else, not looking too good for achieving it here though. Shame really.

    None achievement of Omega Point at a planetary level automatically relates to extinction of higher life on the planet. An inescapable law of cosmic evolution. In the leap of evolution, if you don't grab the trapeze, you crash to the circus floor.

    Celtic Lion

  • Comment number 91.

    Newsnight, Friday 23 October 2009 was bloody amazing. I can only marvel at the amount of work it must have taken to put that together, and how well it came out on the night. Glad to see Hari Kunzru on too.

    Many thanks to all involved, truly the BBC at it's best. For anyone who's at all interested in economics, current events, history or the arts, this is must see TV.

  • Comment number 92.


    Thanks for the link Cookie. I am part way in. I know nothing of world finance but politicians are just impoverished people - Lego figures. Easy to deconstruct.

  • Comment number 93.

    41 cookie

    on the whole the film had some good points [if a bit cabin in the woods at times].

    carbon trading is a racket. climate change is a religion and as we all have a 'carbon footprint' we are all 'sinners' which means taxing a person's very existence. I thought the banning of hydrogen monoxide [H2O] would actually get lots of signatures!!!

    if they could get rid of some of the more flakey bits there would be a good film in there.

  • Comment number 94.


    If 9/11 had not been an 'inside job' these guys would be going ape, and demanding to know why such a superb opportunity was missed!

  • Comment number 95.

    #90 Addition

    Barrie and others with knowledge of DeChardin and Omega Point synthesis and trajectory determination.

    This has been posted here before from No 10s website. In reality it was a critical mass Omega Point generator.

    Though posted in 2006 you can infer the accuracy of the project had the Government decided to implement it. From the calculation of figures £250bn divided by 5 years = £50bn per year.

    Exactly the amount of the contraction of the UK in the present recession. Had the UK Government gone for the Omega Point generation project at the Dome the UK economy would not have gone in to recession, as the trajectory would have put the UK and the world on a path to Omega Point attainment.

    Despite NN parading their Black Swans and the rest of the acceptable media prophets. Things like economic crash were known for years from deviation from effective Omega Point generation trajectories.

    Celtic Lion

  • Comment number 96.


    Oh how things have changed. What do you think thegagofone? Is it anti-semitic persecution, or just persectution?

  • Comment number 97.

    i can understand why americans are worried about the FED. It would be like the british bankers association setting interest rates and handing out bailouts.

  • Comment number 98.

    from mimpromptu
    When dud U say that I knew everything? I keep learning new things about the world, the others and about myself evry day. I have been learning from people like Jeremy Paxman & Streetphotobeing, for example. An enormous amount! And they never try to force it down my throat. I hope that, perhaps, they've learned something from me as well though I fully admit to not having their breadth of knowledge.

  • Comment number 99.

    from mimpromptu
    I meant to say 'When did I say, etc

  • Comment number 100.

    thecookieducker (#88) I fear Alex Jones is an evangelical, right-wing, aka anarchistic, libertarian, 'nutter', mainly because he seems to get just a tad too excited and bcause there is a kind of web business these days which incites excitement primarily to sell ... advertising space and thwart regulation.

    Just an opinion.


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