Morrissey’s most current “tail”: nationalists and vigilantes

In light of recent Morrissey events, this was today posted on Facebook by a person who is close to Morrissey:

I have obfuscated the pictured person’s face along with other identifying details, but otherwise, the post is verbatim.

There is no mention of this incident having been reported to the local authorities, which is a shame; even if a suspected offender is, in fact, a police officer, the local authorities should be more than interested in knowing about it.

However, will justice take place if one hangs a person out to dry on the Internet, allowing that person—guilty or not, of some purported crime—to become subject to highly questionable critique from persons who cannot know whether the purported incident has actually has taken place? Not likely.

Did the person who wrote the post experience this first hand or hear it from another person? Has anybody vetted the contents somehow? I could not see any Facebook comments questioning what had actually happened.

Is this not a bit akin to Donald Trump posting belligerent stuff on Twitter, proffering abuse while spawning hatred? Morrissey and those close to him do have quite a platform to shout from, with many followers. Imagine what could happen if this person is identified. Most likely, any Google search for his name will display the above. Just imagine what it would feel like if you were him and applied for a job, knowing your possible employer would very likely search for your name on the Internet to see what that generated. Would it not be correct to report this person to the authorities, instead of subjecting everybody to this?

Naturally, any police that does wrong should be subjected to criticism, and they should just as naturally be reported to the authorities if they do anything wrong (for which they should be reported).

As I started reading the comments on this Facebook thread, I saw some distinguishing comments that merely a few years ago would rarely, if ever, have been commonplace among fans of Morrissey or The Smiths, for example, these:

Also, someone had linked to this image:


Vile, racistic, and nationalistic trash, displayed for the world to see. Without any kind of vetting or questioning so far, I may add.

When individuals start posting personal information like this to the Internet and seemingly do not even spend a single thought about what would happen if they themselves would be hung out like this, we are in a drab place.

And by the way, whatever happened to “it takes guts to be gentle and kind”?

Educated criminals…are cowards, if they slander people on the Internet. We can be better than this, people. Stand up tall.

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Movies I've watched recently:

  • Manchester by the Sea (2016) - IMDb 3/10

    2017-04-16 15:28
    * * *

    Just because the film naturally carries a containment of sorrow and gloom, it does not explain its complete dreariness. It's got bits of chronological experimentation and nice views of the sea, but otherwise, this is forgettable. See Ang Lee's "The Ice Storm" instead.

  • Fifty Shades Darker (2017) - IMDb 1/10

    2017-04-15 18:28

    I actually thought this film would not be as bad as the first one, but obviously, I was wrong. This is overwrought in no sense of the word, and if it were human, it would be incarcerated indefinitely. This film actually violates basic human rights in ways the first one didn't, so I guess that's what this new version brings to viewers. In no way is this erotic, interesting, or entertaining. The people involved in this should look themselves in the mirror and not make a third film, which _will_ be made.

  • T2 Trainspotting (2017) - IMDb 6/10

    2017-02-22 22:58
    * * * * * *

    This is more a film, I think, which is about aging and repeating your past than anything else. Sure, the characters are older, but I cringe a lot as Boyle has chosen to have them repeat some of their "fave lines" from the first film, 21 years later, for no apparent reason. The slow parts move best, for example, where Renton visits his father, despite that one being sappy. The "new girl", basically a Renton, doesn't bring much to the table. However, Robbie Carlyle steals the show; where Ewen Bremner's "Spud" previously did, by being a comedic maestro with his movements and druggy cadence, he is now converted into a caricature of himself - and yes, I am aware that druggies who have been on dope for more than two decades tend to turn into caricatures in more ways than one - while Begbie offers more. A lot more. Carlyle's acting is so strong that even Begbie's most obvious characteristics - e.g. as displayed where his son stands up against him by wanting to go to college to learn hotel management instead of joining his dad in a life of crime - turn interesting. He's a tour de force. Still, while this film is interesting and entertaining, it is too much of a parody of itself to become a truly interesting introspective. And the plot turn at the end was really a bit too tell-tale and boring to me.

  • Medicinen (2014) - IMDb 1/10

    2016-12-12 19:00

    A car crash where your newborn child dies would be a less hurtful experience than watching this film. I'm kidding, but there is some truth lodged in that statement. This film is very "inspired" by "The Devil Wears Prada". By this I mean Nutley and his writer cohorts have concocted a story about an abhorrent person - played by Bergström, despite many doubts on my site as to what "playing" could be, according to herself - who starts ingesting a medicine that seems to change her life. Naturally, this medicine is a sugar pill. The medicine is also the only thing which is sweet about this film. The script is so poorly written that any, and I repeat, _any_ breathing thing - or dead - could easily excrete something which would improve and best this depressing piece of scatological experience, which all should avoid at all costs. Actually, I could go on forever about how bad everything from the direction to casting, acting, the soundtrack and segues are, but I will not. I refuse to. This is on par with Nutley-Bergström's "Angel", which also marked a new milestone in the string of eulogies to Swedish cinema that seems to be their goal. I'm angry to know the couple seem to use films as an excuse to a) go abroad and senselessly film scenes that have none or very little function for a film and b) have Bergström cry and copulate. Don't see this, even for "fun", which was why I saw it. I will never, ever see this film again, and I hope Bergström-Nutley never, ever make another film, write one nor act in one for the sake of humanity.

  • Yakuza Apocalypse (2015) - IMDb 4/10

    2016-11-26 17:10
    * * * *

    This film stretches beyond a regular action film and even really dips into the true meaning of the word apocalypse, but that's the most positive thing about it. Miike has been taking some major leads from Shakespeare, considering he lived a few hundred years ago, this film is truly not very original. Having said that, it's missing in atmosphere. It doesn't pace well and lost me a bit after 30 minutes and did not win the loss back. Having been Shakespearian before that, this film segues into being laughable and filled with fight (as most films by Miike are). Not recommendable to anyone who doesn't want to dabble in martial arts action-cum-half-assed weird dreaming, having fallen asleep with "Macbeth" on your face.


It’s wrong to think Trump acted well when he got rid of TTP

Naomi Klein‘s brand-new book named “No Is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics” has recently been released, and costs a measly 12 US dollars. That price even gets you the e-book version for free! I got the e-book for $9.

Here’s an excerpt from the book, where Klein writes about how one should not think Trump represents some good values just because he got rid of the TPP:

That same day, shortly before meeting with the union delegation, he signed an executive order withdrawing the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the eleven-country trade deal that he’d railed against on the campaign trail as the “rape of our country.” At the signing ceremony where the US officially left the TPP, Trump announced, “It’s a great thing for the American worker.” Subsequently, a few people wrote to me to ask if this might be the silver lining in Trump’s presidency. Wasn’t it a good thing that trade deals that many progressives had been criticizing for decades were now on the chopping block or, like the North American Free Trade Agreement, set to be reopened and renegotiated to “bring the jobs back”? I understand the desire to find bright sides to the daily chaos unfolding in the White House. But Trump’s trade plans are not one of them.

The whole thing reminds me of all the liberal hawks who backed George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq because the war coincided with their desire to liberate Iraqis from Saddam Hussein—the “humanitarian intervention” argument. There was nothing in the Bush—Cheney track record or worldview to suggest there would be anything democratic or humanitarian about their invasion and occupation of Iraq—and, sure enough, the occupation rapidly became the site of killing fields and torture committed by the US military and its contractors, as well as out-of-control war profiteering. So what is there in Trump’s track record, in his treatment of his own workers, in the appointments he has made, in the pro-corporate policies he has already pushed through, that should cause anyone to believe that the way he will renegotiate trade deals, or “bring back the jobs,” will in any way be in the interests of workers or the environment? Rather than hope that Trump is going to magically transform into Bernie Sanders, and choose this one arena in which to be a genuine advocate for anyone who isn’t related to him, we would do far better to ask some tough questions about how it’s been possible for a gang of unapologetic plutocrats, with open disdain for democratic norms, to hijack an issue like corporate free trade in the first place.

What we are witnessing is not a silver lining of any sort. It’s the push to the finish line in the “race to the bottom” that opponents of these corporate trade deals always feared.

As Lori Wallach, director of Global Trade Watch, put it, “for those who trusted Trump’s pledge to make NAFTA ‘much better’ for working people, it’s a punch in the face.”

A 2017 study from the Center for Economic and Policy Research found that Mexico’s poverty rate has risen since the 1994 implementation of NAFTA, with 20 million additional people now living in poverty—a major factor pushing Mexican migration to the United States. Meanwhile, in North America and Europe, white workers grew progressively more pissed off at having their voices ignored. This opened the space for demagogues like Trump to step in and direct workers’ rage away from plutocrats like him, who had profited so lavishly from the outsourcing opportunities enabled by these deals, and at Mexican migrants instead, victims of the same policies that were hollowing out their communities, the very same bad deals.

This is the space the Brexit campaign usurped, under its slogan “Take back control!” And it is the same rage that France’s Marine Le Pen of the far-right Front National speaks to when she tells crowds that globalization has meant “manufacturing by slaves for selling to the unemployed.” Around the world, far-right forces are gaining ground by harnessing the power of nostalgic nationalism and anger directed at remote economic bureaucracies—whether Washington, NAFTA, the WTO, or the EU—and mixing it with racism and xenophobia, offering an illusion of control through bashing immigrants, vilifying Muslims, and degrading women.

It’s a toxic combination, and it was an avoidable one. Confronting the cruelties of a system designed by and for the wealthiest interests on earth is terrain that rightly belongs to the Left. But the hard truth is that after September 11, large parts of the progressive side of the political spectrum got spooked, and that left the economic-populist space open to abuse. Politics hates a vacuum; if it isn’t filled with hope, someone will fill it with fear.

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Neoliberal love: an excerpt from Naomi Klein’s “No Is Not Enough”

Naomi Klein‘s brand-new book named “No Is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics” has recently been released, and costs a measly 12 US dollars. What a way to celebrate July 4th, right? Go get! That price even gets you the e-book version for free! I got the e-book for $9. Brilliantly written, researched, and Klein’s style is excellent.

Here’s an excerpt from the book, where Klein writes about how neoliberalism works, and of how it’s the opposite of giving love. I’ll be posting a bit more about it soon:

In truth, nothing has done more to help build our present corporate dystopia than the persistent and systematic pitting of working-class whites against Blacks, citizens against migrants, and men against women. White supremacy, misogyny, homophobia, and transphobia have been the elite’s most potent defenses against genuine democracy. A divide-and-terrorize strategy, alongside ever more creative regulations that make it harder for many minorities to vote, is the only way to carry out a political and economic agenda that benefits such a narrow portion of the population.

We also know from history that white supremacist and fascist movements—though they may always burn in the background—are far more likely to turn into wildfires during periods of sustained economic hardship and national decline. That is the lesson of Weimar Germany, which—ravaged by war and humiliated by punishing economic sanctions—became ripe for Nazism. That warning was supposed to have echoed through the ages. After the Holocaust, the world came together to try to create conditions that would prevent genocidal logic from ever again taking hold. It was this, combined with significant pressure from below, that formed the rationale for generous social programs throughout Europe. Western powers embraced the principle that market economies needed to guarantee enough basic dignity that disillusioned citizens would not go looking for scapegoats or extreme ideologies.

But all that has been discarded, and we are allowing conditions eerily similar to those in the 1930s to be re-created today. Since the 2008 financial crisis, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Commission, and the European Central Bank (known as the “troika”) have forced country after country to accept “shock therapy”–style reforms in exchange for desperately needed bailout funds. To countries such as Greece, Italy, Portugal, and even France, they said: “Sure, we’ll bail you out, but only in exchange for your abject humiliation. Only in exchange for you giving up control over your economic affairs, only if you delegate all key decisions to us, only if you privatize large parts of your economy, including parts of your economy that are seen as central to your identity, like your mineral wealth. Only if you accept cuts to salaries and pensions and health care.” There is a bitter irony here, because the IMF was created after World War II with the express mandate of preventing the kinds of economic punishment that fueled so much resentment in Germany after World War I. And yet it was an active part of the process that helped create the conditions for neo-fascist parties to gain ground in Greece, Belgium, France, Hungary, Slovakia, and so many other countries. Our current financial system is spreading economic humiliation all over the world—and it’s having the precise effects that the economist and diplomat John Maynard Keynes warned of a century ago, when he wrote that if the world imposed punishing economic sanctions on Germany, “vengeance, I dare predict, will not limp.”

I understand the urge to boil Trump’s election down to just one or two causes. To say it is all simply an expression of the ugliest forces in the United States, which never went away and roared to the foreground when a demagogue emerged who tore off the mask. To say it is all about race, a blind rage at the loss of white privilege. Or to say that it’s all attributable to women-hatred, since the very fact that Hillary Clinton could have been defeated by so vile and ignorant a figure as Trump is a wound that, for a great many women, refuses to heal. But the reduction of the current crisis to just one or two factors at the exclusion of all else won’t get us any closer to understanding how to defeat these forces now or the next time out. If we cannot become just a little bit curious about how all these elements—race, gender, class, economics, history, culture—have intersected with one another to produce the current crisis, we will, at best, be stuck where we were before Trump won. And that was not a safe place. Because already, before Trump, we had a culture that treats both people and planet like so much garbage. A system that extracts lifetimes of labor from workers and then discards them without protection. That treats millions of people, excluded from economic opportunity, as refuse to be thrown away inside prisons. That treats government as a resource to be mined for private wealth, leaving wreckage behind. That treats the land, water, and air that sustain all of life as little more than a bottomless sewer.

The author and intellectual Cornel West has said that “justice is what love looks like in public.” I often think that neoliberalism is what lovelessness looks like as policy. It looks like generations of children, overwhelmingly Black and brown, raised amidst an uncaring landscape. It looks like the rat-infested schools of Detroit. It looks like water pipes leaking lead and poisoning young minds in Flint. It looks like foreclosed mortgages on homes that were built to collapse. It looks like famished hospitals that feel more like jails—and overstuffed jails that are humanity’s best approximation of hell. It looks like trashing the beauty of the planet as if it had no value at all. It is, much like Trump himself, greed and carelessness incarnate.

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Review: Eddie Izzard – “Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens”

Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens by Eddie Izzard
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

OUR MUM DIED on the fourth of March 1968.
Martin Luther King Jr. died on the fourth of April 1968.
Bobby Kennedy died on the sixth of June 1968.
But Apollo 8 orbited the moon on the twenty-fourth of December 1968.
So that was better.

This autobiography succeeds and fails just on the same basis that Izzard’s stand-up comedy does; it works very well within the constraints that his world of stand-up comedy provides, but on the whole, it fails somewhat and gives off a very fragmented feel. Like life is, I suppose, however, that’s not my cup of tea.

There are a lot of footnotes throughout this book, of which some are hilarious, like this one:

But stinging nettles: They just love existing, don’t they? They’re bastards. Stinging nettles are the Nazis of the weed world. If stinging nettles didn’t sting, then they’d be fine, they’d just be stuff. But in fact, they sting and they sting children, and they make them cry, and then you can’t get the sting away, and then you have to get a dock leaf, which is some other weed that grows near the stinging nettles, and then you rub it on the stinging bit on your body, and then nothing actually happens. The dock leaf doesn’t work—but I was told that it did work—all kids were told this. So yes, stinging nettles. They were there. Death by stinging nettles was our fear.

Brilliant, this line: “And I remember the very small third of a pint of milk they would give you at break time.”—followed by this footnote: “Mrs. Thatcher eventually got rid of those little third-pints of school milk because she hated children.”

Aah. Makes me think of Izzard’s stand-up comedy at its best.

By the way, Izzard spent a little time in Gothenburg, and likes to write of it:

The people in Gothenburg call their city “Ye-ter-bor-i,” which seems wildly different from the word Gothenburg, especially since the Swedes call Stockholm “Stockholm,” but that’s what they call it, so there’s nothing to be done about it.

I also like how the book is riddled with anti-God sentiments such as this one:

If there is a god they need to come down to Earth and explain WWII, Hitler, bowel cancer, and Croc shoes. But no god has ever come to Earth.

There’s quite a lot of writing on the importance of making things happen. It’s nicely written, where Izzard points out the powers of positive thinking, e.g. the following:

Later, when I was working in a restaurant, first as a barman and then as a waiter, I told someone that I wanted to be an actor, that my dream was to perform. “Yeah, yeah,” this guy said. “That never happens.” And I thought, I can’t be here. These people don’t believe that you can do what you want to do, so I cannot hang out with these non–dream believers. I quit within a week.

This bit, on being “emotionally dead” and getting out of it, was beauteous:

Starting to cry, falling in love, and feeling sick in cars are three things that, once you start doing, can’t be switched off. If there were a god he’d surely give us controls for all of them. As I mentioned earlier, from ages eleven to nineteen I didn’t cry. Just paint all those years in using a non-crying paintbrush.

I would get pissed off, I would get angry, but I would not allow myself to cry. Interestingly, I don’t think I allowed myself to be homesick after that point, either. In the early years of my life, in boarding school, I used to cry on the first day back. I always felt very sad. It reminded me of my mum being dead, not being able to see my father for weeks—and so I was sad—and so I cried. I know after the age of eleven I didn’t cry, so not crying was a safer way to exist in the “jungle” of boarding school. It is easier to survive in a tough emotional situation with no emotions. I worry that most kids who go to boarding school, like I did, have to switch off their emotions and become emotionally dead people as adults.

I started to cry again when I was nineteen, at Sheffield University. One day I saw a cat trying to cross the road rather too slowly for the cars that were bearing down on it. I made a noise to try to scare the cat out of the road and get it to safety. But I quickly realized it wasn’t going to get out of the way fast enough from the cars that were traveling very fast and it was run over.

The cat dragged itself off the road and through the little gate of a walkway leading up to somebody’s house. It lay there, dying. I remember I tried to comfort it. But I don’t know if he ever had a chance. The cat died and I picked it up but I felt absolutely nothing. And I realized then that I was emotionally dead. Maybe I had blocked all the connections to feeling anything. It was a safety mechanism and it had served me quite well. It’s what happens in extreme circumstances like accidents, but in that moment I thought, This is wrong. I need to be able to feel things. I need to be able to empathize again. So I forced myself to cry. Not in a fake way of crying as if I didn’t care for the cat but because I did like animals and I wanted to cry and I’d just forgotten how.

So I took the cat back to my room in the Sorby annex and called a vet. “I don’t know what to do,” I said. “I have a cat who has died.” They told me to bring the cat down to them and they would take care of him, which, in part of my mind, I hoped meant they would save it, even though I really knew they couldn’t, because the cat was already dead. Since then, I feel my emotions have reacted more like a real human being’s. It is sad that it took a cat’s death to get through to me.

There are a lot of thoughts involving the social stigmas that come with anything that differs from the binary way of gender thinking that spoils society, e.g. this:

You can say, “Masculine is strong and determined and brave and physically tough.” But then, many women are also strong and determined and brave and physically tough. If you say, “Men have bigger muscles,” is that it? That’s the whole bloody thing? That is masculinity? Just bigger muscles in your arms, your legs?

By the way, “tv” is “transvestite”, abbreviated:

I WENT TO THE TV/TS Help Group regularly for a number of weeks, maybe even a number of months. Eventually I was working on the phone help line, encouraging people who called to come down and visit the group. The first time I went, I just hung out. The second time I went I brought a dress, heels, and makeup for me to wear. Back then, I bought my first dress from a catalog, not from a shop, because you have to have a lot of guts to go into a regular shop and say, “I will try this dress on in this changing room now.” And most trans people won’t have that kind of confidence at the beginning. In fact, we are, understandably, at the bottom of the confidence mountain.

To come out takes a lot of guts and determination, but at the beginning it’s very difficult to have confidence. Because the fear of coming out and getting negative reactions in the streets is so unbelievably high. Which is why I say the defining moment of my life was walking out the door in a dress and heels from 37 Calabria Road, Islington, in 1985. It took me twenty-three years to develop the guts to do that. Anyone who’s ever done it knows that it is just so fucking hard that anything else you do after that seems almost easy. You think, If I can do something that hard, but positive—maybe I can do anything. And maybe you can.

In 2016 I reported someone to the police for shouting homophobic abuse at me near my home in London, and a case was made and passed on to the Crown Prosecution Service. It went to a magistrate’s court and the man in question was found guilty on two counts. So one always has to be wary, and standing up in court and putting over your side of the story can often be a tough thing to do. I’d rather not do this. I’d rather we all just have respect for each other on the streets, but some people just don’t.

On meeting and speaking with Robin Williams:

I’d met Robin Williams previously between the stand-up shows I was doing in London, when we were both shooting the film The Secret Agent. I knew he was filming in London in a scene that I wasn’t in, so I decided to go and visit him and say hello. I walked up to him and said, “Mr. Robin Williams.” And he looked back at me and said, “Mr. Eddie Izzard.” And that really did blow me away.

Robin’s material had been discussed at the stand-up workshop at the Jacksons Lane Community Centre back in the winter of 1987–88, and just to be working with him about seven years later was amazing. Later I handed him a copy of my first video, Live at the Ambassadors, and said, “Would you look at my video?” It was such a crappy thing to do, but I couldn’t help myself. He went and watched some of it straightaway. I knew this because about an hour later I was watching him act on set and, between takes, he made a joke to me that referenced my material. Again, this was all quite surreal to me. I asked him if he thought my comedy would work in America. He said, “Yeah. With the smart people.”

Altogether, he faintly runs towards some kind of better-lay-the-big-truth-on-thick moment at the end:

I’VE SAID THIS BEFORE, but I feel this maxim is true. When it comes to human beings, we are all totally different, but we are all exactly the same. Even if you’re visiting tribes in the rain forest of Cameroon in Central Africa, as I did for the BBC when tracking my DNA back two hundred thousand years. There you will discover that even if you think they are totally alien to us, you’ll soon realize that they’re the same as we are, even if they’re doing things in slightly different ways.* I suppose this is obvious if you think about it: Two hundred thousand years ago we were ten thousand people and now we’re seven billion people. And that number is increasing at a fast rate. In fact, if you look at what makes us all similar instead of looking to find what makes us different, you’ll see that there is one thing that is the same for all of humanity: And that is love. Parental love, romantic love, familial love: love matches up wherever you are. If you’re a loving parent, a loving child, a loving partner with a partner who loves you back, then that is the same all around the world. And you know that if you went into a native tribe and you saw love there, you wouldn’t say, “Oh, your love is totally different.” It would be the same thing, and people would fight to defend the people who they loved.

All in all: an interesting read, but I’ll wager the video documentary with nearly the same name as this book is quite as noteworthy, and may even be a good replacement for the book.

View all my reviews

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Sexism år 1616 = sexism i dag

Det ovanstående är taget från Katarina Wennstams “Flickan och skammen“, en suveränt skriven bok om hur kvinnor och flickor historiskt och i dag smutskastas för sin sexualitet; med tanke på ovanstående lilla citat är dåtid med andra ord inte skilt från nutid.

Att män inte har styrt upp det här är vansinnigt.

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