Posts Tagged ‘North Carolina’

Americans Who Still Speak with a British Accent

August 30, 2017

This is a bit of regional interest. This is a clip from an American programme about different accents in America. It’s about the folk in the fishing communities in North Carolina, who speak with a very marked accent derived from their British and Irish ancestors. The blurb for it on YouTube says that they sound West Country – Cornish and Bristol. With ‘oi’ sound for the ‘i’ in standard English – they say ‘hoi toid’ instead of ‘high tide’, they actually sound more East Anglian to me. We were taught when we were studying American history at College that most of the British settlers of New England came from that side of the country, and the local dialect is similar in some ways to American English. For example, like Americans they call autumn ‘fall’, and as in other British and Scots dialects the ‘u’ sound is pronounced ‘oo’. So ‘dune’ is pronounced ‘doon’, and the man’s name ‘Hugh’ is pronounced ‘Hoo’.

However, very many people from the West Country and Bristol did emigrate to the nascent British colonies in the 17th and 18th centuries. I think there are 30 towns and cities called Bristol in the US. One of the local presses in Cornwall has also published a book on Cornish emigrants to the US.

TYT’s Jimmy Dore Talks to Outreach Head of US Anti-Corporate Corruption Movement

August 1, 2016

In my last piece, I discussed Mike article on the publication of Martin Williams’ book, Parliament Ltd: A Journey to the Dark Heart of British Politics, which reveals that British MPs currently hold 2,800 directorships in 2,450 or so companies, with a combined turnover of £220 billion and a workforce of £1.2m. Although there is no wrongdoing involved, 40 per cent of these directorships are not declared, 6 per cent only partially, and 3 per cent with major flaws. The potential for corruption is immense, leaving Mike to wonder what we can do about it.

In this video by The Young Turks’ Jimmy Dore, the comedian talks to David Cobb, a constitutional lawyer and outreach director of Move to Amend, a campaign group fighting the corporatist corruption of politics. They’re at the Free Speech Zone at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Corporate sponsorship of American politicians began in the 1970s, when a court judged that it constituted ‘free speech’, and so was protected by the US constitution. Since then it’s become a national scandal. Both the Republican and Democrat parties are dominated by corporate interests, particularly Shrillary Clinton, the Democrats’ candidate for the presidency. About a year or so ago, one Californian businessman was so revolted by the corruption, that he started the ‘California Is Not For Sale’ campaign to force politicians sponsored by companies to wear corporate logos on their jackets.

Cobb explains the difference between free speech, and the basis of the American Constitution in that the people govern themselves, and what they say cannot be dictated or affected by the state. But he also states that corporations are not ‘persons’ with the same rights as people under constitutional law. ‘Money’, he states firmly, ‘is property’, and that property can be used to purchase ‘microphones, amplifiers and distribution systems to drown out the rest of us’. He makes the point that for 150 years there was legislation banning corporate sponsorship because it was recognised that this would corrupt the democratic process. When Move to Amend introduced its motions – to remove the legal ruling that corporations are persons with constitutional rights, and remove corporate sponsorship from politics – in the last Congressional session it had three sponsors. This time, it had 22, including one Republican, from North Carolina.

Move to Amend was formed in 2010, it was 12 people in a living room. Now its 410,000 people and growing. 17 states have called for a constitutional amendment, and 600 communities have passed resolutions in their city councils supporting their resolutions. They’ve also been on 350 ballots by individuals, winning in each one. This is not just in liberal strongholds, but also in Conservative towns like Salt Lake City.

We badly need similar legislation like this in Britain to clean out the corporate corruption from our politics. Don’t expect it from the Blairites in the Labour party, though. As Peter Mandelson said, they were incredibly relaxed about getting rich, and notorious for the donations and sponsorships they received from business. And don’t expect it from the Tories either. Previous attempts to get business out of parliament has been shrugged off by the Tories on the grounds that the Conservative

    is

the party of business. David Cameron made a pretence of reforming lobbying, but it was designed to clean out lobbying by charities and other organisations, including trade unions, while leaving the big corporate lobbyists untouched.

RT on American Politicos Recommending Declassified of 9/11 Report to Allow Families to Sue Saudis

May 19, 2016

In this piece, RT interview two American politicos, Walter Jones, a Republican representing North Carolina and his opposite number in the Democrat Party, Rick Nolan, who both want to see the censored 28 pages in the official report on 9/11 declassified. This follows Obama’s decision yesterday to allow the families of the victims to sue the Saudis. Both congressmen also support this as well.

Both politicians have seen the report. Responding to official statements that the 28 pages should not be published, because they are inaccurate, Congressman Jones states that he has actually seen those 28 pages and read them. He states that security was so tight that you could not even make notes. Nevertheless, no one said that there was anything in their which you could not believe. He also denied that there was anything in the document that endangered national security. He believed that it should be published, because he felt that the American people had enough good sense to know what could be trusted, and what couldn’t.

Congressman Nolan states that those 28 pages contain details, such as the names of the people, who supplied the 15 Saudis, who took part in the attack. He also states that there were other people involved, whom he could not reveal, but advised the viewers to use their own imagination. When asked if it was right that people should use the information to launch lawsuits against the Saudis, he agreed that it was right to do so against ‘whoever was responsible’. He also made the point that the current wars in the Middle East America was involved in meant that the American people should know who was their enemy, in order to give their support to all those courageous young men and women, who have stepped up to serve their country in the forces out there.

I agree, but if those 28 pages are published, it will no doubt cause immense embarrassment in certain quarters. Those 28 pages are widely rumoured to lay the blame firmly on the Saudis and certain elements within the Saudi state and security services. The American people should know who it was, who committed this atrocity against their country. As should the people of the other nations, who have sent their young men and women into battle in the Middle East on America’s behalf.

If the Saudis were responsible, as seems almost certain, then this drives the final nail in the coffin of the Neo-Con/Likud lie that Saddam Hussein and Iraq were involved. Of course they weren’t, but the Neo-Cons in the Republican Party and Likud in Israel drew up a plan back in the 1990s for the invasion of Iraq. 9/11 and the lies about Saddam Hussein gave them the excuse they needed for a totally unprovoked invasion. As for George Dubya and Tony Bliar, well, to paraphrase the rhyme ‘They lied; people died’. And innocents have been dying ever since. This report needs to be published now, and the true culprits identified and made to pay. No matter who gets to look uncomfortable or venal.

Young Turks: Republican Admits Voter Registration Laws Intended to Stop Opposition, Discriminate against Poor

April 9, 2015

This is yet another video from The Young Turks commenting on American politics, which is nevertheless acutely relevant over here. I realise I’ve put up a lot of ’em, and some readers might be wondering what the point of them are. I’ve put them up because much of British politics is now deliberately modelled on the Americans. Thatcher’s Conservatives took over workfare from Reagan’s Republicans. And Tory policy is absolutely saturated with Republican ideas.

One of the reforms Cameron has introduced are changes to electoral registration that have wiped 7 million off the electoral rolls. That’s no accident, and it’s not intended to voter fraud. It’s intended to stop the poor, Blacks and other ethnic minorities voting, as these groups vote for Labour. Just as in the US, poor Whites and Blacks tend to vote Democrat.

In this video below, The Turks’ anchor, Cenk Uyghur, comments on an interview between one of the journos, Osif Monvie, on the Daily Show with Don Yelton, the Republican chairman for Buncombe County in North Carolina. Yelton is remarkably honest, to the point that he lost his post in the party. Yelton openly admitted that the voter laws were passed to discriminate against poor Whites, Blacks, and students, to stop them voting Democrat.

Monvie asked the question whether or not the law was racist and Yelton himself was racist.
Yelton replied ‘I’ve been called a bigot before.’ He did, however, sort of try to deny that he was actually racist by stating that one of his friends was Black.

Monvie questioned him about a statement on Yelton’s Facebook page, where he compared Obama to a witchdoctor. Yelton tried to excuse this by saying, ‘Yeah, but I was talking about his White half.’

He then apparently got a bit nostalgic for the days when White people call refer to Blacks as ‘N*ggers’, and asked why they could carry on doing it, when Whites couldn’t.

His response to the disenfranchisement of university students, poor Whites and Blacks was the following: ‘so be it’.
On students ‘Well, if a bunch of college kids can’t vote, so be it. Well, they should have gone down and got themselves a photo ID.’

‘If Whites don’t do it, so be it.’

If a bunch of lazy Blacks who want the government to give them everything won’t do it, so be it.

Monvie raised the point that the law discriminated against Blacks, college students and Democrats. Yelton’s response? ‘Gee’. Which pretty much means ‘Yes’, even before he frankly admitted it:

‘Well, the point of the law was to kick Democrats in the butt.’

And the precise number of voter fraud cases? ‘One or two’. In other words, it was insignificant.

Now I realise that this was an American politicians talking about America. But these policies have been imported over here by Cameron, and so Yelton’s comments similarly apply over this side of the Atlantic.

Don’t have any illusions. Despite Cameron’s purge of racists from the Tories, they still are a very racist party, and Cameron has absolutely no compassion or remorse for the suffering he has inflicted on the working class or university students by raising tuition fees. Yelton’s comments could come from just about anyone of the Tories, but they’d probably be too savvy to say them out loud.

Just about.

The Young Turks on Voter Suppression by Republicans in North Carolina

February 12, 2015

Screw Cameron Drawing

One of the dodges the Tories have passed in order to try to gain a majority at the next election is changes to the electoral registration law. Despite all their statements to the contrary, that their concerned at voter apathy and the decay of the democracy, these reforms have resulted in 7.5 million people now being left off the electoral registers.

That means that 7.5 million people in our country are disenfranchised in fact, not just in the choice of party to vote for. They can’t vote.

In this, the Conservatives over here seem to be following their Republican counterparts in the US. In this clip, The Young Turks discuss legislation introduced in North Carolina amending voter registration. These laws will – at the time the clip was made, they hadn’t been yet been passed – exclude large numbers of Blacks, the poor and the young from voting. These are the groups that traditionally vote Democrat. At the same time as ordinary voters are being marginalised and discarded, the new voting act appears designed to encourage and strengthen the influence of wealth, corporate donors.

I don’t pretend to understand the intricacies of American democracy and their laws of voter registration, which seem from this to be highly complex. What is clear is that there’s a movement by Conservatives on both sides of the Atlantic to deny the poor, the young and the underprivileged of their democratic freedoms. Cameron and Clegg ain’t doing this on their own.

We desperately need to challenge this, and take back democracy now.