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Rob McMeekin
Habitual line stepper.
Habitual line stepper.

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I don't want to know about the incident that spawned this warning sign.

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So I got in a bit of a Twitter ding-dong last week. Nothing new there, it happens every now and then.
This time it was about Bob Crow and investment bankers. For those of you outside the UK, Bob Crow is the leader of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers Union in the UK, better known as the RMT.
You only have to mention Bob Crow in this country and every Daily Mail reading, middle class Rugby fan is immediately incensed.
I was flooded with tweets about the fact that he earns around £100,000 a year and he lives in a council house. This really upsets a lot of people, he’s rich, and he lives in public housing. Surely he should rent privately and allow poorer people a chance to live in the house.
I can’t argue with that. I'm no fan of Mr Crow, however, as a Union leader he has been rather successful. The membership of the RMT has gone up and he’s really annoyed the Daily Mail, so it’s hard not to smile a bit.
But in the league of the really evil and stupid, I feel Mr Crow has a long way to go.
Last night I watched ‘Inside Job’ as I mentioned here earlier, and it’s stayed with me.
These pudding faced men in their expensive suits are the focus of the documentary, failing to answer questions in Senate hearings, attempting to justify the absurdity of their actions, lying to the camera then realizing they’ve been caught out and clamming up.
After multiple examples of their despicable behaviour Bob Crow would have to get a bonus of £6 million a year for bringing about a perpetual rail strike, then once the union was bankrupt he’d have to get it bailed out by the tax payer and then get another enormous bonus before he had a hope in hell of being more of an ass than the average executive of Morgan Stanley, Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup etc etc.
As the ever increasing numbers of people demonstrating against corporate short sighted greed in the #occupywallstreet events are indicating, our disgust and anger should be focussed on the investment banking classes, never forgetting that our governments were bribed, fooled and duped into letting them run wild.
Banks weren’t always so badly behaved. From the depression of the 1930’s until the mid 1970’s, banks were as they should be. Very heavily regulated. They were dull, boring, small c conservative, careful, nervous and unglamorous organisations.
That’s how I want my banks to be. I want the most boring, unadventurous, cautious and careful people running the banks. The twats who’ve been doing it for the last 25 years should be in double-glazing sales, they should have adverts in the yellow pages for dodgy cavity wall insulation services.
The 1980’s deregulation of the banking sector by Reagan in America and Thatcher in the UK meant banking suddenly became ‘sexy’ and ‘cool’ and all manner of badly informed, overly confident wide boys moved in. Basically, they were borderline criminals, let’s not be shy. Actual, measurable criminals who steal actual money. Not with a mask and a gun, but with fraud, obfuscation and deception.
The hell unleashed resulted in brutal divisions in the US and UK, the gap between the richest and poorest is now the greatest it has ever been, and most shockingly that includes the era of slavery.
Do I resent the wealth of multi billionaire investment bankers out of jealousy? I have often been accused of such a motive by low-brow middle class Daily Mail absorbing gentlemen.
Jealous of a dough faced wazzock in an expensive suit? I don’t think so.
Jealous of a man who doesn’t have a creative gram in his soul. And I say man because 99.9% of the vile tribe involved in the greed and macho posturing about their pathetic wealth are white men.
No, I regret my stupidity, we believed if they had a big office building, private jets, fleets of limos, 6 houses and a yacht, they must by default be really clever.
They became folk hero’s, they were interviewed on the telly, they ‘invested’ in Universities that taught economics, their mantras about ‘free markets’ became the truth. They bribed governments, they lied about their wealth, they wriggled out of the tax they should pay by getting supine governments to change the law to ‘encourage financial growth.’ Nice one.
But Bob Crow lives in a council house and earns £100k. He should be publicly flogged. How dare he demand a decent wage for the members of his union. What do they do for goodness sake. Drive bloody trains. How hard can that be? Blimey, it’s not as if they’re investing in Credit Default Swaps, now that takes real skill which is why the people who do that are paid at about 4,000 times the national average.
I never bought into the ‘free market’ myth. I knew, possibly from having a very basic understanding of physics, that there is a finite amount of stuff on the planet. When one man is so screamingly rich it makes your eyes run, that wealth represents energy and that energy has come from somewhere. As we now know, it came from the rest of us. The 99%.
Those basic laws were destroyed by the twisted logic, that’s a polite way of saying deliberate lie, that investment bankers, hedge funds and asset management groups ‘created wealth.’ That is the lie we are all now becoming shockingly aware of. We have great wealth on this planet, it has been taken, gambled, wasted and lost by a very small number of white men,
We should demand that our politicians sever all ties with bank executives, they should be forced to sell off their assets to pay back the money they owe all of us. They should pay their share of tax rather than using undemocratic leverage to change legislation so they don’t have to pay anything.
There was a time when a rant like this would be a lone voice in the wilderness, when accusations of ‘socialist!’ and ‘luddite’ would have been hurled without a second thought. But I sniff change, not from left or right, but from across the board. Capitalism is better than communism, I’m with that, but rabid, growth obsessed free market capitalism clearly does not work. I’m not the only one who is looking for an alternative, a sustainable capitalism that allows people to be creative, competitive and innovative, but doesn’t require such pointless greed and corruption in order to survive for the next 7 year cycle.

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The problem is, I know her. I met her in a feminist squat in 1975 near Regents Park. I didn't like her, even though I liked and supported feminists at the time and made tea for them when they visited, Melanie Phillips was a vicious, critical, inhumane Stalinist feminist, a sexist bully, a ranter and a right old pain in the arse even then. I know many women who knew her then and didn't like her very much either, and this was at a time when criticising a 'sister' to a man was almost criminal.
But today, fool that I am I had to do it. Sit on my chair, grip the seat and read through Melanie Philips turgid dross on the Daily Fail. I won't post a link, if you want to you can find it. She harps on and on about the 'liberal intelligentsia' being the direct cause of the recent riots. It's because of hate filled feminists like Harriet Harman who deliberately set about destroying the nuclear family etc etc. According to the repugnant harridan that scrawled this reactionary dross, kids are rioting because they don't have fathers, because the labour party forced people to be single parents, she then uses a bit of half baked Freudian analysis about male rage. Every single broken window, stolen telly and burnt out car/shop/house is directly the result of the Labour party.
This hate filled, twisted nightmare of a woman has an enormous readership and all around the suburbs of this country today people will be absorbing this distorted gobbledegook and nodding wisely. It's not us at fault they will say, it's those wretched lefty liberals and their absurd notion that the very normal, level headed society we live in is to blame.
Strangely she doesn't quote her own paper which, in March last year, ran with the story that the gap between the rich and poor in the UK is bigger now than it was during the era of slavery 200 years ago. The gap started to widen in the late 1970's, I know, I was there. This gap was levered in by, strangely, not the liberal intelligentsia, but by right wing moralists and the uber capitalist bullies who funded them discreetly, people like, um, like Melanie Philips.
The de-regulation of the banking industry under the Thatcher government resulted in the mind numbingly short sighted foolery of the last 25 years, where terms like 'fiscal growth' and 'free market economy' leached into our every day lives. Where 'the city' became the focal point of our culture, where the dullest people on earth, the least creative, most stupid and greedy morons we have ever spawned because totems of our respect. Bankers. Ghastly men who drive stupid cars and pontificate about the economy, and all they did was screw it up for the rest of us, and then we, the poor, stupid, dumb tax payers gave them a load more money.
I wonder why young people are so stupid, short sighted and greedy. Oh wait, it's the 'liberal intelligentsia' telling them to be like that.
The moral lead they've been fed for the past 30 years, as exemplified by endless streams of financial specialists, banking pundits and free marketeers is 'you can fiddle, steal and lie your way to wealth like we do.'
Well, they have, and none of us like it.
The Daily Mail also ran a story last year about the growing 'underclass' of disenfranchised kids who had sod all to look forward to, who didn't fit into the very narrow avenues of 'opportunity' that are supposed to exist, who are marginalised, harassed and pushed aside by the law breaking, non tax paying, phone hacking, spray tanned super rich.
We are all responsible for the riots, me, you, Thatcher, Major, Blair, Brown and the Cameron bloke, the Labour party, the Tory party, the Lib Dems, right wing bigots and left wing whiners. We have allowed our society to be ruled by a super elite who live offshore, don't pay tax, have the power and money to lobby governments and 'adjust' legislation to suit their goals.
But two faced Phillips, an old lefty feminist blames it all on the 'liberal intelligentsia' of whom she was once a prime member. As we all know, there is no greater anti smoker than someone who is an ex-smoker. Who the hell is the 'liberal intelligentsia' anyway? Stephen Fry? Definitely not me, I'm thick.

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Make Google+ actually useful to read - filter circles from your Stream.

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