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The “trickle-down” theory: The principle that the poor, who must subsist on table scraps dropped by the rich, can best be served by giving the rich bigger meals.
( William Blum )

A Spell In The Army ..
A spell in the army might teach the louts, the bullies, and the knife-wielding low-life some things about the sanctity of life.

Unfortunately it won’t happen.
There’s no room in our Armed Forces for cowards and gutless wimps.

Undoubtedly the war with Iraq was a tragedy.
I think it was also a crime.
( Tony Benn )

The United States is not actually against terrorism per se, only those terrorists who are not allies of the empire. 
( William Blum )

The United States is an equal-opportunity bomber.
The only qualifications for a country to become a target are: (a) It poses an obstacle – could be anything – to a particular desire of the American Empire; (b) It is virtually defenceless against aerial attack; (c) It does not possess nuclear weapons. 

( William Blum )

I’ve Never Witnessed Another MP Behave Like That ..
Twice before he came “out” as gay I witnessed Tory Nigel Evans fondling young men.
The first was in St Stephen’s Tavern, a pub in the shadow of Big Ben.
The second occasion was in Strangers’ Bar in Parliament itself.
I’ve never witnessed another MP, heterosexual or gay, male or female, behave like that.
( Kevin Maguire, 14.04.2014 )

I did quite enjoy the days when one went for a beer at one’s local in Paris and woke up in Corsica.
( Peter O’Toole )

Trapped In Their Own Homes ..
Hell tends to appear in the midst of societies which don’t believe that hell exists.

The fate of ever-expanding numbers of people, trapped in their own homes at nightfall as the cowardly, mindless ferals come out and play, is hell.
It is a life of fear, anxiety, sleeplessness, torture, loss and danger.
With no prospect of help coming, ever.

Dare to defend yourself and you will either get your head kicked in, in front of your weeping family, or be arrested for ‘taking the law into your own hands’ by the most useless police force in the solar system.
( Peter Hitchens, December 2009 )

No matter how paranoid or conspiracy-minded you are, what the government is actually doing is worse than you imagine.
( William Blum )

After World War II, the United States, triumphant abroad and undamaged at home, saw a door wide open for world supremacy.
Only the thing called ‘communism’ stood in the way, politically, militarily, economically, and ideologically. 

( William Blum )

It’s Funny How Everyone Wants To Go To Heaven ..
It’s funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the bible says.
It’s funny how everyone wants to go to heaven provided they do not have to believe, think, say, or do anything the bible says.
It’s funny how some people can go to church for Christ on Sunday, but be an invisible Christian the rest of the week.
It’s funny how someone can say, ”I believe in God”, but still follow Satan (who, by the way, also believes in God).
It’s funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

I would like perhaps to have been more at peace with myself at an earlier age, but then I wouldn’t say I’m at peace with myself now.
I’m just at peace with not being at peace.
Does that make sense?
( Bono )

Propaganda is to a democracy what violence is to a dictatorship. 
( William Blum )

Maybe It Will Happen Again ..
I believe in the Great Flood.
Every religious text talks about it.
You can see the marks of it in the Grand Canyon.
You can see the marks of the flood everywhere.
Aboriginal tribes have a flood mythology.
It happened.
Maybe it will happen again.
( Russell Crowe )

The House of Lords is the British Outer Mongolia for retired politicians.
( Tony Benn )

I have always said this of Tony Benn.
He immatures with age.

( Harold Wilson, 1981 )

When will the dropping of bombs on innocent civilians by the United States, and invading and occupying their country, without their country attacking or threatening the US, become completely discredited?
( William Blum )

Booming House Prices ..
The average house outside London is worth £254,000 or about 10 times what a nurse earns.
In London the average is £458,000 or around 18 times the earnings of a nurse.
Maggie Thatcher must be turning in her urn.
And the number renting privately is 18%, the highest since records started in 1980.
That’s four million people living in the clutches of private landlords who can increase rents and boot them out on a whim.
Booming house prices rippling out of London are a genuine battleground in the ConDem coalition.
Lib Dem Business Secretary Vince Cable thinks, I’m reliably informed, that Osborne is mad to subsidise even higher prices with a Help to Vote Tory mortgage subsidy.
The 109,370 homes built last year under the ConDems was the lowest since the 1920s.
( Kevin Maguire, 14.04.2014 )

Bob Crow was admired by his members and feared by employers, which is exactly how he liked it.
( Manuel Cortes, Rail Union Boss )

The United States is not concerned with this thing called ‘democracy’, no matter how many times every American president uses the word each time he opens his mouth.
Since 1945 the U.S. has attempted to overthrow more than fifty governments, most of which were democratically elected, and grossly interfered in democratic elections in at least thirty countries.

( William Blum )

We get ourselves into our own little spiral.
We end up inventing problems to pretend we are relevant, and then try to fix the problems we have just invented.
( Sarah Teather, Former Lib Dem Minister )

Nobody Learns From It ..
Half a century of liberal crime policies under all parties have utterly failed.
As I write, the prisons of England and Wales (I expect Scotland is much the same) are full almost to bursting.
I am not sure why this isn’t a major story.

Some figures:  In 1960, the England and Wales prison population was 27,000.
By 1990, it had hit almost 45,000.
Last week it stood at 85,338, with room for only 568 more.
It won’t take long to find them.
Remember, this has happened despite the watering down of all penalties and the repeated slashing of sentences.
Yet nobody learns from it.

It will be ‘solved’ by letting more prisoners out, and sending fewer criminals to prison.
( Peter Hitchens, 23.03.2014 )

We are built to be athletes.
We wouldn’t have this body otherwise.

We would just be a blob on a chair.
( Darcey Bussell )

Every one of the many wars the United States has engaged in since the end of World War II has been presented to the American people, explicitly or implicitly, as a war of necessity, not a war of choice; a war urgently needed to protect American citizens, American allies, vital American ‘interests,’ freedom and/or democracy, or kill dangerous anti-American terrorists and various other bad guys.
( William Blum )

I’ve had a very full life and I’ve enjoyed it very much.
I’ve learned a great deal and feel indebted to all the people who have worked so hard.
When you reach my age, you have to remember to be very careful about your bladder on marches.
You can’t drink any tea for about 24 hours beforehand.

( Tony Benn )

Is The Weather Worse Than It Used To Be?..
Is the weather so much worse than it used to be?
Or are we just getting worse at coping with it?
In the days before privatised trains, didn’t they cut the trees back next to railway lines?
Did state-run electricity boards take as long as privatised ones to fix fallen power lines?
When rivers were patrolled and kept in order by fine old bodies such as the lamented Thames Conservancy, weren’t they better managed than by the grandiose quango called the Environment Agency?
The Agency’s great at issuing statements, but does it do much dredging of ditches and streams?

And, as the last generation of grammar-school educated engineers and boffins retires, are their comprehensive-trained successors as skilled and competent as their fore-runners?
This seems to me to be a better explanation of the mess we’re in than ‘climate change’.

( Peter Hitchens, 05.01.2014 )

Why should it just be the bankers, politicians and the idle rich who get all the best things?
As a militant trade union we demand a standard of living for our members that enables them to share in the fine wines and fine times that the likes of David Cameron and his Old Etonian mates take for granted.

( Bob Crow )

The National Endowment for Democracy, an agency created by the Reagan administration in 1983 to promote political action and psychological warfare against states not in love with US foreign policy, is Washington’s foremost non-military tool for effecting regime change.
( William Blum )

If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people.
( Tony Benn )

Economy Recovery Propaganda ..
Our supposed economic recovery is shown to be a lie by the fact that more than one million emergency food parcels have been handed out to needy families.
Remember the people being helped by the Trussell Trust when you next hear ministers claiming we are all better off.
We are not.
It’s spin, propaganda shamelessly pumped out to secure a Conservative election victory.

Most of us will have lower living standards in 2015 than in 2010 because Cameron’s coalition will be leaving families worse off after five years.
Plunging some into poverty, surviving on hand-outs because wages are so low and welfare cuts – when millionaires are awarded tax cuts – is compassionless Conservatism.

There are two Britains.
Cameron’s fantasy world and the austere land inhabited by the majority of voters.
( Daily Mirror, 16.04.2014 )

To the American power elite one of the longest lasting and most essential foreign policy goals has been preventing the rise of any society that might serve as a good example of an alternative to the capitalist model.
This was the essence of the Cold War.
Cuba and Chile were two examples of several such societies in the socialist camp which the United States did its best to crush.
( William Blum )

A Different Set Of Rules For The Rich, The Poor And The Well-Known ..
A rich banker fiddled Southeastern trains out of his daily fare for five years, got caught, and because he’s minted, stumped up £43,000 straight away.
He wasn’t prosecuted and his privacy has been protected.
So, are we really to believe that the same would be true if a skint person got caught jumping trains because he had to?
We know the answer to that.

And I’m sure Jim Davidson and Jimmy Tarbuck both named by police in connection with sex offences, are wondering why their reputations were thrown to the wind, despite not even being charged.
It seems there’s one set of rules for the rich, another for the poor and an entirely different agenda for the well-known.
Each one utterly stinks.

( Fiona Phillips, 19.04.2014 )

The Biggest Decline In Living Standards Since The 1920s ..
The Government is delighted and George Osborne says it’s “compelling evidence” his austerity plan has been worthwhile.
Because, as anyone who understands statistics knows, if your living standards get worse every week for four years, then improve for one week, you are now much better off than you were.

Obviously you have to not include the first four years, but that’s being picky.
The figures also show we’ve been through the biggest decline in average living standards since the 1920s.
This means things have to improve a bit more before we can celebrate doing as well now as in the affluent 1930s.

There’s even more good news, because it was also announced that the amount lost to corporate tax avoidance last year was down £2.5billion to £18.8billion.
And this is the reduced figure that we should be pleased with.
The tax office says the £18.8billion they think is being avoided is “under consideration”.
It sounds as if they’re stressing too much, doing all that “considering”.
I suppose they wait until it gets back up by another billion, then they “contemplate” it as well.

Others that might be relieved wages are finally rising include the board at Barclays.
Last year it paid £2.4billion in bonuses, including £8.8million to one of its bosses.
Barclays then cut 7,000 jobs in Britain.
Of course it’s vital we pay these sums, otherwise these bankers might leave the country and cut 7,000 jobs somewhere else, and then wouldn’t we feel silly.
In any case, these bonuses should delight us all, because they account for a large chunk of the increase in wages that show the Government’s strategy is working.
If you exclude bonuses, wage rises are still below inflation.
So we’re not yet doing quite as well as the 1920s, but there is compelling evidence we’re not far off the 1760s.
( Mark Steel, 19.04.2014 )

Far and away the most important lesson to impart to the American mind and soul, regardless of our lifetime of education to the contrary, US foreign policy does not mean well.
( William Blum )

A Warning To The World From The United States ..
In summing up the affair in his memoirs, president Eisenhower seemed to settle upon one rationale in particular, and this is probably the closest to the truth of the matter.
This was to put the world, and specifically the Soviet Union and Nasser, on notice that the United States had virtually unlimited power, that this power could be transported to any corner of the world with great speed, that it could and would be used to deal decisively with any situation with which the United States was dissatisfied, for whatever reason.

( William Blum )

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