Conflict 7 England


Published on

Photojournalist Neil Jackson looks at how power affects the media and the corruption of politicians in England, a section of Conflict

Published in: News & Politics, Education
  • Very interesting dear Neil ! Thank you for sharing. I referenced your excellent presentation in Slideshare group 'BANK OF KNOWLEDGE' : - to inform our members ...We would be honored by your support through your membership. You are invited to join us ! I wish you a nice day. Greetings from France. Bernard
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here
  • Hello Neil, I am grateful for started following me.. But I ask that you please choose my presentation as a Favorite, clicking where the heart that says ’Favorites’. I’ll be very very Thanked. Greetings from Venezuela Excuse my bad English
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here
  • Hello! I congratulate you for your excellent presentation. It’s really interesting. I add your presentation as a favorite, I hope you visit my presentation, and also add me to your favorites. Thanks, greetings from Venezuela
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here
  • Very interesting collection Neil!!Thanks for sharing.
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here
No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Conflict 7 England

  1. 1. CONFLICT SEVEN: England
  2. 3. ‘ The people of England, wearied and stunned by parties And alternatively deceived by each, had almost resigned the prerogative of thinking. Even curiosity had expired and a universal languor spread itself over the land. The Opposition was visible no more than as a contest for power, whilst the mass of the nation stood torpidly by as a prize.’ Tom Paine, author of The Rights of Man , writing in December 1792
  3. 4. . This frame: workers celebrate May Day in London England -the biggest lie is omission
  4. 5. ‘ This royal throne of kings, this sceptered isle, This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, This other Eden, demi-paradise, This fortress built by Nature for herself… this England.’ William Shakespeare, Richard II , 2.1, 40-51 What’s next indeed. Come walk with me into a majestic demi-paradise, a land of splendour and majesty… ‘ We make trifles of terrors, ensconcing ourselves into seeming knowledge when we should submit ourselves to an unknown fear.’ William Shakespeare, All’s Well That Ends Well
  5. 6. ‘ See when it happened yeah like boom, it was kinda like a quick ting like boom, went down the road, come back up, boom boom, finished, boom, ghost (we disappeared), you get what I’m saying?’ Michael Alleyne, 18, describes how he, Jade Braithwaite (20) and Juress Kika (19) stabbed to death 16-year-old A-grade student Ben Kinsella. The murderers were being secretly recorded in a police van
  6. 7. ‘ We paid $3 billion for these television stations. We will decide what the news is. The news is what we tell you it is.’ Fox station manager David Boylan orders two investigative reporters to quash a story ‘ Anarchy in the UK… it’s coming sometime…’ The Sex Pistols
  7. 9. ‘ Peaches weds 19-YEAR-OLD CELEBUTANTE TIES KNOT... BUT FORGETS TO TELL HER BOYFRIEND* Front page of The Mirror, August 13, 2008. A full inside page was then devoted to the marriage of Sir Bob Geldof’s daughter. The death of British soldier Signaller Wayne Bland, 21, in a suicide bombing in Afghanistan – and war between Russia and Georgia - was deemed of less importance than Peaches’ marriage, a story on jellyfish appearing on the British coast, US actress Tori Spelling refusing to appear in a Beverley Hills 90210 spin-off and singer Kerry Katona snapped making an advert for frozen-food retailer Iceland. The Mirror front page on July 5, 1945, featured a cartoon drawing of a badly wounded serviceman offering a wreath to the reader a with a card stating ‘Victory and Peace in Europe’. Underneath, the text said simply, ‘Here you are – don’t lose it again.’ During the Second World War, The Mirror had been the forces favourite. Later that August ’08 week, Russia threatened Poland with a nuclear strike after the Poles agreed to host a US anti-missile shield. The two top stories on MSN Today ? ‘Hilarious video of (football manager) Steve McLaren speaking with a daft foreign accent’, and ‘Discover how Kelly Brook allegedly ended her romance with Billy Zane.’
  8. 10. ‘ In a democracy the readers are the ultimate arbiters of the sort of news they want to read. If a newspaper’s news content is not right for them they don’t buy it. There is plenty of choice.’ Practical Newspaper Reporting (handbook for trainee journalists) Geoffrey Harris and David Spark ‘ A Day in the Life (of a fictitious trainee reporter): Debbie’s Day Debbie is the youngest reporter on the Express . She grew up in the town, did work experience on the newspaper during her schooldays, and discovered she liked it so much that after getting three reasonable A-levels she turned down the idea of university and enrolled on a six-month NCTJ course at a further education college in a nearby city… She has been there now for six months, and despite earning less than her best friend, a trainee hairdresser, is thoroughly enjoying it most of the time.’ Jon Smith, Essential Reporting, the NCTJ Guide to Essential Reporting (NCTJ: National Council for the Training of Journalists – the examining body for journalists) ‘ I feel like I am turning out a load of shit, so I expect them to notice. I’m due a review pretty soon, so I’ll find out then…’ Email from a graduate trainee reporter to her tutor, quoted in Nick Davies’ Flat Earth News
  9. 11. ‘ But now we are deep into a third age of falsehood and distortion, in which the primary obstacles to truth-telling lie inside the newsroom, with the internal mechanics of an industry which has been deeply damaged. The problem now is not merely at the point of publication but also at the earlier and even more important stage of gathering and testing raw information.’ Nick Davies, Flat Earth News This page: today’s news is tomorrow’s fish and chip wrappers (saying). A builder takes a break from using his mind
  10. 13. ‘ THE TRUTH… Some fans picked pockets of victims… some fans urinated on the brave cops… some fans beat up PC giving kiss of life… The Sun, April 19, 1989 ‘ The error staring them ( Sun reporters covering the 1989 Hillsborough Stadium disaster) in the face was too glaring… it obviously wasn’t a silly mistake; nor was it a simple oversight… It was a classic smear.’ Stick It Up Your Punter: The Rise and Fall of the Sun, Peter Chippendale and Chris Horrie ‘ The real cause of the Hillsborough disaster was overcrowding… the main reason for the disaster was the failure of police control.’ Lord Justice Taylor, who led an inquiry into the 96 deaths
  11. 14. This page: feeding time at the zoo. Paparazzi at the funeral of reality TV star Jade Goody. Preceding the coffin into the church was publicist Max Clifford, the ringmaster who Private Eye stated has made £200,000 from her demise. In the weeks leading up to and the week following her death, her story was rarely far from the front pages of the red tops – even her two sons, aged three and four, were splashed across the front pages of both The Sun and The Mirror a few days after her passing. More possible pics/interviews for the diary, chief? How about a Christmas interview with the father? ‘ Christmas without Mummy’ Front page of the Sunday Mirror , December 27, 2009. Kate Mansey’s article then detailed how the star’s children spent their Christmas, even managing to crowbar in a Michael Jackson link (‘she’s dancing up there with Jacko’) – they’ll like that. When are their birthdays, Kate? We can milk those for a good few years yet . Mansey was the winner of the 2008 British Press Awards ‘Young Journalist of the Year’. Either she is adept at this brand of ‘journalism’, or our brightest are redirected by an industry for the most part obsessed with sleazy drivel. Whatever the cause, the result is the same. Important stories dropped
  12. 15. ‘ Editors must not use the fame, notoriety or position of a parent or guardian as sole justification for publishing details of a child’s private life.’ Clause 6 of the Press Complaints Commission code of practice. The Press Complaints Commission is a toothless body run by the industry itself. Which is why they get away with such mawkish, intrusive rubber-necking. The purpose of which may be explained by Chomsky… ‘ The non-elite mass media are basically trying to divert people… Let them get interested in professional sports, for example. Let everybody be crazed about professional sports or sex scandals or the personalities and their problems or something like that. Anything, as long as it isn’t serious.’ Media observer Noam Chomsky, talk at the Z Media Institute, June 1997
  13. 17. But you don’t have to have celebrities or sports stars on your patch to blatantly divert people. Censorship – and that includes self-censorship – is thriving… ‘ Busy police chief tells it like it is! One of the things which concerns me, as the Divisional Commander, is so much of what we see on television or in the newspapers is about horror stories such as people being attacked in their own homes. We see or hear so little about many of the good things. Hopefully this column will concentrate on some of those good things… Something we’re finding more and more is young people with alcohol. It’s not a good thing when children are staggering around because they’ve got hold of some tinnies. As a parent, please be aware of the danger to your child if he or she gets hold of booze and remember the police are here to help if you have a problem.’ On the Beat with Chief Superintendent David Sykes Tameside Advertiser , Thursday 27 July, 2000. Page 21 The page lead article. The Tameside Advertiser is delivered to nearly 100,000 homes, covering the Hyde area of Manchester…
  14. 18. But you don’t have to have celebrities or sports stars on your patch to blatantly divert people… ‘ Busy police chief tells it like it is! One of the things which concerns me, as the Divisional Commander, is so much of what we see on television or in the newspapers is about horror stories such as people being attacked in their own homes. We see or hear so little about many of the good things. Hopefully this column will concentrate on some of those good things… Something we’re finding more and more is young people with alcohol. It’s not a good thing when children are staggering around because they’ve got hold of some tinnies. As a parent, please be aware of the danger to your child if he or she gets hold of booze and remember the police are here to help if you have a problem.’ On the Beat with Chief Superintendent David Sykes Tameside Advertiser , Thursday 27 July, 2000. Page 21 The page lead article. The Tameside Advertiser is delivered to nearly 100,000 homes, covering the Hyde area of Manchester ‘ Drugs claim two more young lives A man died after taking drugs in a public toilet. Anthony Greenwood, an unemployed fence maker, overdosed on a lethal dose of methadone and heroin on October 12, 1999. An inquest heard this week how he was found in a toilet cubicle in Greenfield Street, Hyde, by his friend Alan Bayley who had earlier given him £20 for drugs and arranged to meet him there… A 21-year-old overdosed in a shopping centre toilet cubicle four days before Christmas Day, an inquest heard. A security guard discovered Lee Stephen Walker sitting on a toilet facing the wall surrounded by drug paraphernalia on December 21, 1999.’ Tameside Advertiser , also on Thursday 27 July, 2000. Also on page 21. But considered not to be a page lead, even buried way back on page 21 ‘ Even where sleep is concerned, too much is a bad thing.’ Homer (circa 7 th Century BC). But was it sleep, ie inattention, this crazy ju x taposition? This skewed news value?
  15. 19. ‘ Everyone needs to be prepared to believe the unbelievable.’ John Humphries, reading out an appeal by Action on Elder Abuse. Tameside Advertiser Claire Mooney and Chief Superintendent Sykes focused on beer-swilling teenagers whilst, on their patch, young addicts were being pulled dead from public toilets. Perhaps those kind of stories don’t shift furniture and cars for advertisers. That wasn’t the only elephant in the room they missed between them as they connived to give people more of the ‘good things’. The world’s spotlight was shining on Hyde only five months before: Doctor Harold Shipman was convicted of the murder of 15 patients. He’d been arrested in 1998 after what is believed to have been a 27-year killing spree which cost the lives of at least 215 people, in and around Hyde. The youngest confirmed victim was 41, although high court judge Dame Janet Smith DBE, in her 2002 report, seriously suspects he murdered a four-year-old girl. ‘ In my view, the primary reasons why this investigation failed were that CS Sykes instructed DI Smith to undertake the investigation and kept to himself the responsibility for supervision. He was culpably wrong in both respects... I am critical of CS Sykes in other respects also. Once the investigation was under way, he failed to realise that DI Smith was out of his depth.’ Dame Janet Smith, The Shipman Inquiry
  16. 20. Dame Smith may have used clear, critical thinking in her summing up, but some things don’t change. ‘ Concentrating on the good things’, the area’s police chief maintained happy links with the chief hack of the local freesheet (not the boss – that’d be someone in the advertising department) even after the Shipman murders. And why not? His copy was free, didn’t rock the boat, and filled a space. To have slated him would have killed The Golden Goose of Page 21. The only alternative to that would have been stories reflecting the general sense of depression in the area, which was escaped from, by some, with drugs…
  17. 21. … And the car salesmen and conservatory company bosses don’t like their ads sat beside those kinds of stories. Let’s get things straight, Claire, before you print any more of these disturbing headlines. You’re just here to scribble copy. It’s the ad team that brings the hard cash in – we pay your wages. Upset that apple cart, and you’re down the road, understand? Now, Father Christmas is coming to the shopping centre next week. How about a big splash that we can use as a tie-in to the local traders? A front page one, please. Mock up on my desk by the afternoon, so that sales can start hawking spaces. Oh, and drop this plate off in the canteen, will you, there’s a good girl. Right, where were we?... Suppliers… these toilet rolls are too expensive for a start… ‘ In a well run society, you don’t say things you know. You say things that are required for service to power.’ Noam Chomsky, What We Say Goes
  18. 22. Shipman’s surgery
  19. 23. ‘ The new ethic is that journalism is a commodity, purely to generate money. This is the Murdoch effect. Wapping is a cultural Chernobyl, spewing its poison across the whole journalistic landscape.’ German newspaper Die Welt’s prize-winning foreign correspondent Reiner Luyken, interviewed by journalist John Pilger, in Hidden Agendas ‘ And now to our favourite topic – sleep.’ BBC Breakfast presenter Sian Williams introduces stage hypnotist Paul McKenna to the show, January 19, 2009. The BBC bills Breakfast as their ‘flagship early morning television news programme’. McKenna was plugging his new book, I Can Make You Sleep (out now in all good bookshops). Even Alastair Campbell, who had done so much damage to the BBC, was allowed to plug his debut novel All in the Mind on the BBC’s The Andrew Marr Show on October 26, 2008 Right: Murdoch’s Wapping headquarters
  20. 24. ‘ A lot of thought seems to be going into making (TV news) thoughtless… A flawed media, I suggest, leads to a flawed democracy. Ill-informed citizens cannot make proper judgments about their leaders' actions, about the actions that take place in their names, about the laws that govern them. The media matter.’ Former BBC Ten O’Clock News anchor Michael Buerk laments dumbing-down at a Ryerson University talk to journalism students in Toronto, Canada
  21. 25. ‘ What we are looking at here is a global collapse of information gathering and truth-telling. And that leaves us in a kind of knowledge chaos, where the very subject matter of global debate is shifted from the essential to the arbitrary; where government policy, cultural values, widespread assumptions, declarations of war and attempts at peace all turn out to be poisoned by distortion; where ignorance is accepted as knowledge and falsehood is accepted as truth.’ Nick Davies, Flat Earth News. To explain:
  22. 27. ‘ It's now a very good day to get out anything we want to bury. Councillors' expenses?’ As the Twin Towers were still burning, Labour spin doctor (and therefore public employee) Jo Moore decided the tragedy was a golden opportunity to sneak out any bad news on behalf of her political bosses, with the expectation that it would be buried in the media as world attention focused on the 9/11 tragedy in New York
  23. 28. ‘ The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the largest and most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world's population sees news from AP .’ Facts and Figures , AP website (My emphasis) ‘ Our customers know they can trust Press Association's reputation as a fast, fair and accurate source - the news as it happens, without spin … Press Association news wire service is taken by every major national and regional media organisation.’ Press Association website (My emphasis)
  24. 29. ‘ Brown took the Tube to the event, impressing at least one student, Rohini Simbodyal. ‘ We got on the Tube and people were looking at Gordon Brown,’ Simbodyal, 20, said. ‘People were amazed, saying: 'It's Gordon.' But everyone was very British, they looked and then looked away. A few people came up and shook his hand and said 'Good luck.' ‘ He was just like a normal guy,’ she said.’ Daily Mail website Mail Online May 12, 2007
  25. 30. Taken for a ride on the big spinning machine. Passing off Rohini Simbodyal, the black, minority and ethnic officer for Labour students as an ordinary passenger, Gordon Brown’s PR machine even suckered sworn enemy The Daily Mail into repeating their sugar-coated spin. Job done well, Rohini is now a Labour Councillor in the Jubliee ward of Enfield, North London. Cynical manipulation aside, this story serves to show how the media don’t check their facts, relying instead on wire copy and the PR machine to serve up their stories: this lie traveled the world, appearing in USA Today, and Australia’s The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. I found that out with a quick Google of Ms Simbodyal’s quote. How long would it have taken a journalist to do the same with: ‘Rohini+Simbodyal+labour’? Try it for yourself – in two seconds you’ll have pages and pages of stories relating to random passenger Rohini’s links with Labour. And that could have been done as easily in Sydney as in London ‘ Brown took the Tube to the event, impressing at least one student, Rohini Simbodyal. ‘ We got on the Tube and people were looking at Gordon Brown,’ Simbodyal, 20, said. ‘People were amazed, saying: 'It's Gordon.' But everyone was very British, they looked and then looked away. A few people came up and shook his hand and said 'Good luck.' ‘ He was just like a normal guy,’ she said.’ Daily Mail website Mail Online May 12, 2007
  26. 31. The problem was that the story had been served up by news agency Associated Press (AP). AP has clout – news editors believe AP copy. But AP, together with fellow wire services Reuters and the UK’s Press Association, has been battered into submission by bean-counting owners, suffering severe staff cuts. Something has to give, and that something is time for attention to detail. Therefore, when AP gets lied to by someone with an agenda –a spin doctor, say - that lie gets injected into minds around the world. So Rohini gets to be an average passenger, Gordon – or David Cameron – get to be men of the people – and we get manipulated. Now imagine that degree of manipulation and truth-bending constantly going on, story after story, day after day, media outlet after media outlet. On and on and on……. ‘ Brown took the Tube to the event, impressing at least one student, Rohini Simbodyal. ‘ We got on the Tube and people were looking at Gordon Brown,’ Simbodyal, 20, said. ‘People were amazed, saying: 'It's Gordon.' But everyone was very British, they looked and then looked away. A few people came up and shook his hand and said 'Good luck.' ‘ He was just like a normal guy,’ she said.’ Daily Mail website Mail Online May 12, 2007
  27. 32. indoctrinate /in dok trinayt/   • verb cause to accept a set of beliefs uncritically through repeated instruction.   — DERIVATIVES indoctrination noun indoctrinator noun.   — ORIGIN originally in the sense teach or instruct: from French endoctriner , from doctrine ‘doctrine’. Compact Oxford English Dictionary ‘ I run the paper purely for the purpose of making propaganda, and with no other motive.’ Press baron Lord Beaverbrook (1879-1964), speaking to the Royal Commission on the Press, 1947
  28. 33. In 1960, the News Chronicle was shut down, heralding the start of British journalism’s slide towards a corporate death-grip. The bean-counters took over Fleet Street, men interested only in the bottom line. Did this free journalists from propagandist proprietors? The first thing the new bosses did was slash jobs. Instead of meeting and developing contacts, the over-stretched (and often cheaper, trainee) reporters were reduced to manning telephones and re-writing press releases – side-stepping or toning down stories which might upset advertisers. The news desk became a news factory, churning out copy to fill space. Any copy, from anywhere; preferably light and risk-free. From the stripped down, over-stretched news rooms of the free weeklies and national dailies, a torrent of glossy public relations material is converted straight into printer’s ink, as proper scrutiny of the powerful goes undone
  29. 34. ‘ This cannot just be national anymore. We must have global supervision... The age of irresponsibility must be ended . We must now become that new global order founded on transparency, not opacity .’ My emphasis. Gordon Brown, speaking in the US about the Autumn 2008 financial meltdown
  30. 35. ‘ Multiplication is vexation, Division is as bad; The Rule of three doth puzzle me, And Practice drives me mad.’ Elizabethan nursery rhyme by mathematician John Napier, dated 1570 ‘ Gordon Brown has spent years cosying up to the bankers, and is now desperately trying to heap all the blame on to them. But the financial system he designed meant they weren’t properly supervised. They were allowed to let rip.’ Conservative MP Michael Fallon
  31. 37. Against Bank of England advice, 395 tons of gold bullion – more than half the British reserves - were sold off by Gordon Brown in a series of 17 auctions between 1999 and 2002, when the price was at a 20-year low. Since then the price has almost trebled, meaning the decision cost the British taxpayer over £4.7 billion (if sold in January 2009). By announcing the sale beforehand, Mr Brown single-handedly allowed the price to tumble. Treasury shadow secretary Philip Hammond said it was a ‘staggering display of economic incompetence’. The Government’s response to Sunday Times requests to disclose the advice given to the Treasury, when Mr Brown was at the helm: ‘ We have decided that it is not in the public interest to release further information .’ My emphasis, to be returned to later. Since 2003, China doubled its stocks of bullion to 1054 metric tonnes. Chinese leaders tend to have an engineering, rather than legal, background. One could say, hands on
  32. 38. Traditionally, gold is bought by the astute prior to an anticipated upheaval, such as war. If property and currency are devalued, gold and silver will retain their intrinsic worth
  33. 40. Following the 2009 bank bailouts, figures released by the independent Office for National Statistics revealed British debt stood at £2,000,000,000,000 (two trillion). According to the Daily Mail , £33,000 is owed for everyone in Britain. Despite years of prosperity, we were already in record debt prior to the crash - £67 billion. ‘ I did maths at school and for one year at university but I don't think I was ever very good at it - and some people would say it shows.’ Gordon Brown’s stumbling response to questioning by Jordan Beaumont, 13, on Chorlton High School’s pupil-run television station, CHTV, on April 24, 2007. One year of university level mathematics, and he was chosen to be Chancellor of the Exchequer. A stark demonstration of how slavish party politics and skillful maneuvering can shamefully eclipse our brightest and best
  34. 41. ‘ I have spoken to the chief executive of RBS, and made it quite clear - and he agrees - that no-one associated with these huge losses should be allowed to walk away with large cash bonuses.’ Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling, speaking on the Andrew Marr Show , February 8, 2009. The Royal Bank of Scotland is 68% owned by the public following their £20 billion bail-out. A proposed £1 billion of which is to be siphoned off in the form of bonuses, with some high-flyers expected to receive over £1 million each. That month, a British family was being evicted every seven minutes
  35. 42. ‘ There are no rewards for failure.’ Gordon Brown on the 2008 banking fiasco, February 9, 2009. Disgraced former Royal Bank of Scotland chief Sir Fred Goodwin has retired aged 50 and was allowed to pocket over £700,000 of taxpayers money annually. Faced with public disgust – his Edinburgh home was vandalised and he was vilified in the press as symbolic of the bankers greed - he declined some of the public money he’d been entitled to and has accepted £342,500 a year which he enjoys from his new home in the south of France. Despite the bluster, the Prime Minister had no say in the matter. Goodwin’s bank lost £24.1 billion, Britain’s biggest ever corporate loss
  36. 43. In Middle England, debt soon took effect as the recession bit hard. Still, there was an easy way out. ‘ Get a Secured Homeowner Loan for any purpose from £5,000 to £250,000. Choose to repay over anything from 3 to 25 years. This spreads the cost of your loan and makes the repayment easier to handle - a great way to get on top of those existing debts and provide your family with the things you need now. Simple to Apply, No Arrangement Fees, Consolidate your debts, Flexible Repayment Periods, Optional Payment Protection’ Secured Loan UK
  37. 44. ‘ Sorry we £$?! Up your Christmas, But really we don’t give a £$?! ‘ Cos we have made loadsa money, In fact we’re swimming in it.’ Lyrics by London bankers and stockbrokers the City Boyz ‘‘ Affordable’. ‘Low’. ‘Easy’. Such reassuring words. And there are others. If you go for a consolidated loan, your debt will be ‘secured’. Now, how reassuring is that? So much wiser than, say, ‘unsecured’, wouldn’t you think? Except that it means your debts are, for the first time, secured against your house. So if you don’t keep up the payments you could lose the roof over your head. And the payments are ‘easy’ only in the sense that you have to make one big one rather than several little ones. They are ‘affordable’ and ‘low’ only because you’re going to be paying for them very much longer… The number of personal bankruptcies (in the UK) was forecast to rise beyond 100,000 in a single year.’ John Humphrys, Beyond Words
  38. 46. ‘ I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around (the banks) will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.’ President Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826). Now for a quick bite to eat…
  39. 47. ‘ Have we said hello to the policeman, children?’ Ronald McDonald at Tower Gardens Play Scheme Centre, Tottenham, August 23, 1996. Ronald was invited to the annual ‘Fun Day.’ ‘ McDonald’s founder, Ray Kroc, believed that ‘A company only has the right to operate in a community when it is prepared to contribute to it.’ So in every country where we do business, we strive to make a valuable contribution at both a national and local level… So all our franchisees are encouraged to ‘put something back’ by involving themselves and their staff as much as possible in local events, schools, community groups and organisations and to raise funds for local charities.’ McDonald’s Franchising (brochure for potential franchisees)
  40. 48. ‘ It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from regard to their own interest. We address ourselves not to their humanity but their self-love.’ Wealth of Nations (1776) book 1, chapter 2 Scottish philosopher and economist Adam Smith ‘ We sold them a dream and then paid them as little as possible.’ Ray Kroc, founder of the McDonald’s empire Outside the damaged London McDonald’s restaurant on Whitehall during the May Day 2000 anti-capitalist riot…
  41. 50. anarchy   • noun 1 a state of disorder due to lack of government or control. 2 a society founded on the principles of anarchism.   — ORIGIN Greek anarkhia , from an- ‘without’ + arkhos ‘chief, ruler’. Compact Oxford English Dictionary
  42. 51. ‘ It is the death of the spirit we must fear. To believe only what one is taught and brought up to believe, to repeat what one has been told to say, to do only what one is expected to do, to live like a factory-made doll, to lose confidence in one's independence and the hope of better things - that is the death of the spirit.’ Tokutomi Roka (1868-1927), Japanese writer and philosopher (quoted in JL Carr’s The Harpole Report)
  43. 52. Spotlight on the first female Home Secretary Jacqui Smith. Remit when Home Secretary: policing, immigration, national security and matters of citizenship. Salary: £141,866. Claimed £116,000 in parliamentary expenses for her second home between 2001 and 2007, including an 88 pence bath plug and the proverbial kitchen sink. Husband Richard Timney, also on the government bandwagon, had a salary of £40,000 (as of Spring 2009) for running his wife’s constituency office. Enjoys pornography. Media commentators respond with scorn to any notion that there is anarchy on the streets. For the most part they are right, as the low turnout for demonstrations proves. This only serves to highlight their power, and that of the state education system. As our lives are degraded, homes repossessed and jobs cut, a great swathe of us - dumbed down, taught not to raise our voices, conditioned to obey and respect authority – complacently turn on the TV and immerse ourselves in the dream-world of celebrities and sports stars. Others, a handful, don’t
  44. 54. ‘ I stuffed their mouths with gold.’ Labour Health Minister Aneurin (Nye) Bevan, on securing the approval of the medical profession as the National Health Service was formed, itself part of post-war reforms dubbed the ‘Welfare State’. Among the few demonstrators who always turn out are the black clad young anarchists. It is ironic that the real anarchy in the UK is in the heart of the system; people in government and town halls and the banking industry a large portion of which is now in public ownership because the bankers can’t be trusted. The self-serving powerful are encouraged by our apathy
  45. 55. Public sector chiefs and MPs live in a protected bubble charachterised by massive consumption and sleaze. Beneath them in our caste-stratified society lies an idealogically-sound layer of apparatchiks, management bureaucrats also rummaging in the public purse. Bosses in education, health and social work spring to mind – riding comfortably along on the UK-PLC gravy train. Perhaps the most Orwellian example of double-standards is the case of Richard Laing. The boss of the government-owned agency tasked with eradicating world poverty (lofty ambitions, we British – or does it make a good sound-bite?), Mr Laing of CDC Group PLC pocketed nearly £1 million of our money in 2007
  46. 56. 'CDC has long abandoned any interest in poverty reduction. CDC is focused instead on wealth creation for the affluent, including its own chief. This is a travesty of its original mandate.’’ John Hilary, executive director of War on Want, points out the obvious But do these well-heeled managers do a good job? That depends on who asks the question. NHS managers, from the point of view of chief box-ticker, do a fantastic job. Praise must go to the bright young things when they re-classified hospital trolleys as beds after ordering the wheels removed (box ticked: provide more beds), switched treatment priorities from time-consuming serious ailments, such as cancer, to the trivial, such as bunions (box ticked: provide higher successful patient turnover) and re-defining corridors as wards (box ticked: provide more wards). The list goes on. In one extreme case a hospital manager had staff writing to patients asking when they would be going on holiday – and then promptly set that time for the operation, knowing the patient would be unable to attend (box ticked: waiting list cut)
  47. 57. Is it wrong that taxpayers fund these people to perform their devious tricks? Does it matter that the cliques get to choose their own replacements, thus oiling the machine ad infinitum? And does it matter that the pool from which they are drawn – the politicos, the managers - is so narrow? Middle-class with a university background, demonstrating an eagerness to conform? I would argue that it does. After the MP’s fiasco, nothing was learnt about openness and honesty at any level of politics…
  48. 58. ‘ Given the current climate we would like to be a little more circumspect about disseminating (councillors’ expenses) at this time.’ Summary findings of the Local Government Association’s survey of councillors’ allowances, released in the middle of the MPs expenses debacle. Thus the sleaze and omission had been studied by another taxpayer-funded fiefdom, this time the graspers in the Town Halls. And as the artillery barrage descended the message was sent out – stay bunkered down till it lifts. I’ll attempt to translate into plain English the bureaucratic jargon they use to hide truth from the public. Here goes: Change ‘Be a little more circumspect’ to: ‘ say nothing about our own, similarly outrageous activities.’ But staring at some small portion of the jigsaw without taking in the wider view is misleading. The question isn’t just whether these people are stealing from us, as they are bound to do given their aggrandising nature. I believe the real role of this swathe of unquestioning bureaucrats, the reason the government wants 50% of young people to go to university, is to help control society. A vast, loyal management party who’s mouths have been silenced with gold as the doctors were previously. One parting salute to an outgoing Prime Minister…
  49. 59. ‘ The age of irresponsibility must be ended… We must now become that new global order founded on transparency, not opacity.’ ‘… it is not in the public interest to release further information.’
  50. 60. ‘ Mr G Brown Monday 14 th May Invoice Work ending Friday 18 th May 2007 Dear Sir, For providing domestic services at the above address payment of £834.75 is now due. Comprising of
  51. 61. The new order founded on transparency was soon put to the test and found wanting. Across the political spectrum, grasping MPs had been exposed for what they were in an excellent exposé by the Daily Telegraph . The Establishment were quick to come to the defence of the crooked – the Archbishop of Canterbury urged a halt to the ‘systematic humiliation’ of MPs as the story ran and ran, saying that it could do irreparable damage to public confidence in democracy. In other words, he wanted secrecy to be maintained. A senior churchman, urging silence over seedy activities? Surely not. Brown promised ‘transparency’ when fellow-graspers the bankers were under the spotlight but after the Telegraph had gone into minute detail placing MP’s expenses in the public domain, the façade soon shattered. Politicians, it seems, are above scrutiny. MPs expenses were officially published in June 2009. And despite having nothing left to lose – all the information having been leaked by then – they still chose to censor embarrassing details in the official release of the information
  52. 62. Such contempt for the public was immediately reciprocated at grass roots level - the June 19, 2009 edition of The Sun ran the censorship story on pages 1, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8. Other news outlets treated the story with equal prominence. As the light streamed in through the window illuminating the moats, duck houses and such-like, at last people became angry. For once, the Fifth Estate, the media, was doing its job. Democracy swung into action, and the people spoke. The man from the church, trotted out to support his powerful friends, climbed back into his gilded little box (cut from the same cloth, he lives in a palace and enjoys the services of a chauffeur, gardener and various other flunkies). Democracy - and free speech – works when it isn’t choked by the self-interested. We would do well to be angry. We owe it to those who fought and died for our freedoms to scrutinise the corrupt and the powerful. And, often as not, those people are one and the same. And it is with this shabby crew at the helm that we steer into completely unchartered waters...
  53. 63. This has been an extract from Conflict . Click here to visit Conflict
  54. 64. Links