The Plastic Hippo

April 5, 2013

Opportunity knocks

Filed under: Education,Health,History,Law,Media,Politics,Rights,Society,World — theplastichippo @ 1:46 am
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Former senior advisor to Bill Clinton and former Chief of Staff in Obama`s White House, current Mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel once let slip an insight into the mindset of politicians; bad news, it seems, is always good news.

With unusual candour, the Democrat spin doctor turned Chicago boss man confirmed the motivation of power when he said:

“You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that (is that) it`s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”

The logical conclusion of this established Machiavellian approach is to maintain control by inventing a crisis when no crisis actually exists.

Never one to shy away from shifting responsibility and never one to miss an opportunity from some bogus tub-thumping, Thursday saw our action man Prime Minister aboard a submarine armed with nuclear weapons. Watching the carefully arranged news footage, an overwhelming instinct to scream; “for God`s sake don`t let him touch anything” was replaced by the chilling realisation that he has the launch codes anyway. Later, he told Scottish manufacturers of weapons we sell to tyrants to kill people that they would not have a job if they voted for independence. To seal the double whammy crisis manufacture, Cameron said:

“North Korea does now have missile technology that is able to reach, as they put it, the whole of the United States, so if they`re able to reach the whole of the US, they can reach Europe too. They can reach us too.”

The rather poor use of English in this statement, but more importantly the breathtaking ignorance of science and geography, suggests that Michael Gove might be correct after all in asserting that standards in education are falling.

But, Michael Gove has his own crisis to engineer. After reducing funding for schools, changing the curriculum, inflating examination pass marks, cancelling new building programmes and ripping up staff terms and conditions, he has taken the opportunity to impose “much needed reforms” on the state education system. Michael Gove says that the crisis was caused by “Marxist teachers” and not by Michael Gove.

Inventing bogus statistics to justify ideological dogma is not just the prerogative of Michael Gove. Another Murdoch poodle, Jeremy Hunt and before him Andrew Lansley, used the George Osborne Great Big Book of Great Big Lies to destabilise, demonise and eventually flog off the National Health Service. To make the most of this opportunity to make profits for private health care companies they have “interests” in, it was important to guarantee that the disaster at Mid-Staffordshire NHS was kept on the front pages and in every BBC news broadcast and ensure that underfunding, staff shortages and a scorched earth management strategy were not allowed to distract from the crisis opportunity. For good measure, throw in a crisis at Leeds General heart unit for children when children win a high court ruling for a heart unit for children at Leeds General and the opportunity for closure remains “a good thing”.

A crisis in the banking industry offers the opportunity to reward bankers with bonuses and give the wealthy a tax cut. A crisis in the justice system, particularly regarding “known terrorists” who face no actual charges, offers the opportunity to do away with human rights legislation and legal aid with the added bonus of the introduction of secret courts to protect “national security”. A crisis in the regulation of a feral press offers the opportunity to ignore Leveson and appoint Paul Dacre as the Chair of the Press Complaints Commission. Paul Dacre is the Managing Editor of the Daily Mail.

The Daily Mail have led the coalition government`s crisis management agenda in branding the poor, the ill, the young, the old, people with disabilities, the low paid, union members, migrants, the fat, the thin, the bad and the ugly as “evil”. The latest shrill “scrounger” rhetoric reached a new low with the suggestion that being a benefit claimant has a causal link to the deaths of six children with the implication that having a “something-for-nothing” welfare dependency leads directly to infanticide. Any outrage at this overtly hate-mongering propaganda should be directed at the regulatory authority; in this case the Press Complaints Commission. The best advice on offer is that people should keep calm and continue to breathe in and out.

It is, of course, easy to dismiss the unctuous bile being peddled by the Daily Mail as increasing desperation faced with falling profits in a dying industry, but when a senior minister of the crown endorses the hateful sentiments of bigotry and intolerance, it is clear that logic, humanity and suitability to govern have gone out of the window. George Osborne, when questioned about Iain Duncan Smith`s ability to live on £53 a week, said that “it is not sensible to reduce debate to one individual`s set of circumstances.” Just 48 hours later, the Chancellor named a particularly nasty individual who is guilty of the manslaughter of his own children and suggested that the deaths of six young children justifies the government`s persecution of people in need. He said:

“I think there is a question for government and for society about the welfare state – and the taxpayers who pay for the welfare state – subsidising lifestyles like that, and I think that debate needs to be had.”

That debate is certainly worth having, but only if we avoid discussing parking a taxpayer funded Land Rover Discovery in a disabled bay to buy a Big Mac, a taxpayer funded farmhouse and horse paddock, tax avoidance on daddy`s trust fund and directorships of some rather unpleasant private companies. If we are faced with a crisis of state sponsored scroungers prepared to kill their own children for child benefit, then the opportunity to punish the poor and those in need of support becomes simply irresistible. Benefits, it seems, equates to homicidal tendencies. It might be best not to mention Harold Shipman in case all GPs end up at Her Majesty`s pleasure or Jeremy Bamber or, more recently, Stephen Seddon. Bamber and Seddon both, relatively well off as they say, murdered their parents with the intent of claiming an inheritance. Clearly, this “something-for-nothing” culture has to stop in order for George Osborne to continue not paying tax and for Iain Duncan Smith to continue claiming £32 of taxpayers` money for a single breakfast. Quite how he will survive the rest of the week on just £21 in anybody`s guess.

Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel has been compared to the foul-mouthed Scottish spin-doctor in “The Thick of It” and to the character Josh Lyman in the West Wing. Indeed, it has been suggested that when Tony Blair was about to give a speech supporting Bill Clinton during the sordid Monica Lewinski scandal, Emanuel shouted “Don`t f**k this up” at the then British Prime Minister.
Opportunity is knocking for Mr Emanuel. With Hillary out of the way, he is being tipped as the Democrat candidate in the 2016 Presidential Election. Crisis…what crisis?

Heart surgery for children at Leeds General is set to resume after the data used to justify the closure of the unit proved to be a complete crock of guano. The boot boy that caused stress, anxiety and fear in doctors, nurses, parents and children in need of heart surgery, a specimen called Sir Bruce Keogh, continues to draw a considerable salary. So too does Sir David Nicholson, who after presiding over the Mid-Staffordshire disaster was promoted to be boss man of the now privatised NHS. Health Secretary and habitual liar Jeremy Hunt has express his full support for Keogh and Nicholson and continues to be employed by News International. What is difficult to comprehend is why it is taking so long to arrest these men.

After playing with a submarine, Cameron joined his Chancellor in using the deaths of ten children for sordid political advantage and when asked to comment on the HBOS financial scandal trotted out the usual bowel movement of blame. He has, apparently “swept away” the “failed banking system introduced by Gordon Brown”. Sadly, when a pride of paper tigers like the Banking Standards Commission recommend that certain bankers should be bankers no more, it`s fairly clear that the crooks are bang to rights guilty. So, Sir James Crosby, Andy Hornby and my Lord Stevenson will have more time to spend in their numerous residences counting their money. Having stripped HBOS and Lloyds of pots and pots of money, Sir James Crosby has been told to resign from the investment firm he now “advises”. Bridgepoint, a rather shady gang of profiteers with more than an interest in private health care post NHS sell-off, are also “advised” by Sir Chris Patten, former Tory minister and now Chairman of the BBC. What is difficult to comprehend is why the BBC are only now reporting the death of the NHS when the corpse in safely on the slab; or maybe not.

Paul Dacre is still at large even as his Daily Mail incites hatred with inaccurate reporting and stomach churning bigotry. One day, the chickens in this pox filled rag will come home to roost, but until then we will have to be content simply reading the Daily Mail reporting of a growing measles epidemic in South Wales. It was the Daily Mail, you may remember, that took the lead in promoting the crazy babblings of a known quack who said that MMR vaccinations “damaged” children. This resulted in some parents not allowing their children protection against measles. Many of the victims in Wales are teenagers who would normally have been vaccinated at the time Dacre`s arse wipe was spreading fear.

An aside:
This morning in Walsall town centre Morrisons (buying fags and a Guardian, since you ask), someone had turned every copy of the Daily Mail face down and the wrong way up. I lifted one to confirm that it was the Daily Mail and a well-dress woman in her 60`s said to me with a refined accent: “You shouldn`t buy disgusting rubbish like that.”

I was simply thrilled.



  1. Another nail well and truly smacked on the head!

    As far as I know, there is no proven connection between benefit payments and psycopathic behaviour. Dave, Gideon, Gove, Duncan Smith and the rest of the ghastly crew that purport to govern us demonstrate this perfectly.

    The Realist

    Comment by The Realist — April 5, 2013 @ 1:14 pm | Reply

  2. just a point on the Daily Mail, they obviously believe and a poll today supports their view that a large number of people believe this. People on the internet are trying to dispell these myths but what can any one body or one party do when the mass media will not report the truth.

    The truth that says more people now than in 2010 claim sickness benefit, all scroungers when we have ATOS, I doubt it

    Comment by ianrobo — April 5, 2013 @ 8:08 pm | Reply

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