Posts Tagged ‘The Times’

Lobster’s Robin Ramsey Explains Why Thatcherism Didn’t Work as Claimed and Why Truss Will Fail

October 2, 2022

In my last piece I said that Lobster’s editor, Robin Ramsey, has a background in economics and that he said in one of his pieces for the magazine that the Tories recognised long ago that trickled down economics didn’t work. They still wanted to cut spending and punish the poor for being poor while giving lots of more money to the rich. They just had to find a better pretext for it. So they started arguing for their wretched policies on grounds of morality. Now Truss has gone back to the old trickle down argument. In the recent issue of Lobster, 84, Ramsey has a piece in his ‘View from the Bridge’ column, ‘All Trussed Up’ explaining why Thatcher’s economics policies didn’t work in the way she thought they did, and even despite her best efforts, and why this means Truss’ policies will fail. He writes

‘On the day that Prime Minister Truss made her announcement about dealing with the energy crisis here, The Times (8 September) briefly mentioned (on p. 39) that the Chancellor of the Exchequer was off to the City to discuss ‘Big Bang 2’ – further deregulation of the financial services sector. Centrally, I would guess, will be a change to the rules introduced after the financial crisis of 2007-9 which increased the amount of capital the banks had to keep in reserve. In other words, financial gambling is going to be encouraged again. The central question with this new government is this: do they really believe that this warmed-over Thatcherism will work? My guess is that they do; that they have spent too long in a free marketeer intellectual ghetto to understand even the Thatcher years. They have failed to grasp that Thatcherism didn’t work on its own terms: it did not ‘cure’ inflation and did not produce more economic growth than its predecessors. Mrs Thatcher’s ‘reforms’ were possible because her government had North Sea oil revenues to pay for mass unemployment; could sell off chunks of the public sector; and, despite her best efforts to kill it, had a manufacturing base three times as big as it is now. The new government has little oil revenue; a much diminished manufacturing base; and not much of the public sector left to be sold. It will be interesting to see how long it takes them to grasp that the horse they are enthusiastically flogging is dead.’

For further information, go to https://www.lobster-magazine.co.uk/article/issue/84/the-view-from-the-bridge-47/

38 Degrees Internet Petition Calling for Scrapping of Mini-Budget

October 2, 2022

I also got this email and petition through from internet democracy organisation calling for ‘Cheeselab’ Truss and ‘Queasy’ Kwarteng to scrap their wretched mini-budget. I’ve had absolutely no problems about signing it. Please feel free to do the same if it frightens and appals you as much as it did me.

‘They’ve driven us off a cliff, David.

Markets in panic, pensions on the brink of bankruptcy, rising interest rates, the pound crashing. [1] It’s taken Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng just 6 days to tank the economy with their ‘mini-budget’ – and put OUR livelihoods on the line. [2] Mini-budget, maximum chaos.

This is about the money left in our pockets at the end of the month. Rising interest rates send mortgages skyrocketing. [3] A weaker pound makes clothes and food more expensive. [4] This budget has plunged us into even more chaos, just when we needed urgent help to get through the cost of living crisis.

Millions of us across the country are enraged by their decision to borrow billions to give to the rich – and tank the economy in the process. [5] International financial institutions, the Bank of England and even Tory MPs have savaged the plan. [6] There’s only one option: rip up the budget.

We need to show where the British public stand today. So, David, will you add your name right now to the open letter calling on Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng to RIP UP this disastrous mini-budget? Clicking the button below will add your name automatically.

ADD MY NAME

NO, I DISAGREE

Here’s the open letter:

To Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng,

RIP UP your “mini-budget” and replace it with an urgent rescue plan to save our economy, save families during this cost of living crisis and save our public services already on the brink.
Signed,Thousands of members of the public 

ADD MY NAME

NO, I DISAGREE

Thank you for being involved,

Angus, Mike, Ellie, Tom and the 38 Degrees team

Notes:
[1] BBC News: Treasury rejects U-turn on mini-budget despite turmoil
[2] The Guardian: Kwarteng scraps top 45% rate of income tax and cuts stamp duty
The Daily Mirror: Mini-Budget 2022 summary: £45bn tax cut announcements at a glance and how they hit you
[3] The Guardian: Homeowners warned of ‘significant’ rise in UK interest rates
The Times: Prove you can afford 7% mortgage, borrowers to be told
[4] The Telegraph: How the tumbling pound is pushing up prices
Metro: Why is the pound falling and how does it affect me in the UK?
[5] The Guardian: ‘A budget for the 1%’: government accused of huge tax cut for super-wealthy
[6] BBC News: IMF openly criticises UK government tax plans
Reuters: Bank of England moves to calm bond market rout after tax cut storm
The i: All the Tory MPs who’ve publicly objected to Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget

Giorgia Meloni – Conservative or Fascist?

September 27, 2022

I’ve been watching some of the videos posted by members of the British and America right about the new Italian prime minister, Giorgia Meloni. Meloni is head of the right-wing Brothers of Italy party, or to give them their Italian name, Fratelli d’Italia. I think ‘Fratelli’ means ‘little brothers’, but if so, then someone decided that it’s not impressive enough for the English translation of their name. She and they have been accused of being Fascists, and arch-conservatives like Matt Walsh, Simon Webb, the Lotus Eaters and Piers Morgan have rushed to defend her. Part of the controversy about her concerns her party’s slogan ‘God, family and nation’. She is proudly Christian and determined to defend the faith. She also stands for the traditional nuclear family and is against adoption and surrogacy for gays. She also rejects the modern ideology she believes is threatening motherhood as an identity, along with national identity, in order, so she says, to reduce people to anonymous consumers. And she is also anti-immigration. For the above pundits, these are all Conservative policies, not Fascist. The problem is that they were also Fascist policies. Her slogan ‘God, family and nation’ sounds like a reworked version of the old Fascist slogan, ‘Family, Faith and Fatherland’. Mussolini was anti-clerical atheist, but he made a deal with the Catholic church that allowed Roman Catholic religious education in schools in return for papacy recognising Italy as a nation, something the church had refused to do following Garibaldi’s forcible incorporation of the Papal states into the new Italy during the Risorgimento. The Italian Fascists were also determined to protect the traditional family against attack from Marxism. Marx and Engels had made it clear in the Communist Manifesto that Communism sought to abolish the family. This attitude was shared by some of the sociologists and ideologues that denounced marriage in favour of cohabitation and free love in the 1960s and 1970s and it continues in the programme of Black Lives Matter, which seeks to replace the nuclear family with a communal raising of children. There was also a huge uproar in Italy a few years ago when an Italian minister, a Black African woman, declared that she wanted polygamy legalised.

Her party’s flag has also been cited as further evidence of fascism. It contains a flame, which is supposed to refer back to the flame on Mussolini’s tomb. From what I saw, the party’s flag was the tricolour of Italy with the flame in the middle. It reminded me very much of the Tricolour Flame, the name of a ‘post-Fascist’ party which emerged after the break-up of the Missimi, or Moviemento Socialie Italiano, the Italian Social Movement, the main neo-Fascist party after World War II. Another party right-wing descended from the MSI was the Alleanzo Nazionali, led by Pierluigi Fini, which claimed to be centre right rather than far right. From this you could conclude that Meloni and the Brothers of Italy were Conservatives, albeit descendants of fascism and just a little further right of the majority of contemporary European Conservative parties. Their defence of the traditional nuclear family and rejection of some gay rights certainly contrasts with the socially liberal wing of the Tories and Dave Cameron’s introduction of gay marriage.

But some of her rhetoric certainly had my alarm bells ringing. In one of her speeches, she’s supposed to have referred to the Great Replacement, the belief that non-White immigration has been deliberately encouraged in order to replace the traditional White European population. And she’s also denounced financial speculators trying to destroy the nation state. Superficially, this sounds innocuous enough with an element of truth in it. Britain, Ireland, America and many of the European countries were hit hard by the banking crash of 2008, a crash that was caused by rampant, unregulated speculation of the type Liz Truss would like to return. As for the hatred of the EU, I was told by an Italian lady while I was at Bristol uni that when her country joined the single market, prices shot up. This caused massive anger to an extent that when she went back there, she didn’t feel safe. And after Italy’s economy collapsed, the European ‘troika’ took control and dictated the country’s economic policy. But it also sounds like the coded rightist nonsense about George Soros, whose various pro-democracy organisations in Hungary and elsewhere have been accused by Viktor Orban and others like him of seeking the destruction of traditional society. More sinisterly, it recalls the vicious, blatantly anti-Semitic conspiracies about international Jewish bankers.

Her rhetoric denouncing the reduction of people to consumers also needs analysis. At one level it recalls the left-wing concerns about the rise of consumerism and the destruction of traditional values that were voiced during the emergence of the affluent society in the ’60s and ’70s. But it could also reflect another aspect of fascist ideology – the celebration of humans as producers. After Mussolini broke with the Italian socialists he gave his paper, the Popolo d’Italia, the subheading ‘the paper of workers and producers’ to reflect the corporatist ideology which promoted both workers, management and proprietors.

As she stands, it looks very much like she is a centre-right conservative with elements of Fascist ideology. I haven’t yet seen anything about her followers marching about in black shirts and jackboots, nor about the proscription of other parties and a rigid control of the media. But then she’s in coalition with Berlusconi and his Forza Italia party. Much the same was said of him when he had Italy under his libidinous rule. There was evening a book written about it describing it as a form of fascism, written not by someone from the liberal media, but by a Times journo, as I recall. Talking about his book on Radio 4 one Saturday morning, he said that the reason Berlusconi didn’t have the authoritarian, paramilitary trappings of fascism was because he didn’t need it. For example, Berlusconi owned much of the private Italian media, and dictated the direction of the state-owned broadcaster so that all of the Italian media was practically in his hands.

Meloni may not be an overt fascist, but there’s enough fascist ideology in her conservatism to be of real concern.

Talk Radio Viewers Vote that Wokeness Prevents Proper Policing

September 2, 2022

As right-wing and terrible as it is, Talk TV appears even more dire and right-wing than GB News. GB News is the station that had Neil Oliver platform Peter Sweden, a Holocaust denier who has, according to an article by Zelo Street, also said nice, admiring things about Hitler and the Nazis, and thinks LGBTQ people should be put in concentration camps. He also believes that the Nazi camps contained theatres, swimming pools and cinemas.

I think Sweden, real name Imanuelsen, has been taken in by Nazi propaganda. During the War the Nazis masked the Holocaust by declaring that the Jews were merely being evacuated to the east. The lie was that the Jews were being given homes and land away from the rest of the German population. The Nazis even made a propaganda movie showing the happy, contented, well-fed evacuees were shown working on the allotments in the village the Nazis had so generously given them. When the camera had stopped, however, the troops moved in and forced them off to the death camps. That was the reality. But Goebbels and the rest of the horrors had manufactured these propaganda films, and their post-War successors have embroidered them with malicious lies about cinemas and so on, and pratts like Sweden have been taken in and are repeating them. And no-one should invite someone who believes and spreads such malignant nonsense on to their programme.

But most of GB News’ presenters at least make an attempt not to appear that malign and bonkers. They also seem to have a variety of presenters and panellists, even if their top one is Nigel Farage. Talk TV has Julia Hartley-Brewer, Times columnist and, if memory serves me right, former editor of the Depress. She’s another one who presents herself as immensely well-informed, especially on the subject of the EU, which she is firmly against. The reality is that she’s profoundly ignorant. Mike’s put up several articles pointing out how little she actually knows about the European Union on his site after she’s appeared on various programmes spouting her nonsense.

This week one of the major issues taxing her mighty intellect, and those of so many other right-wingers, was the breakdown of law ‘n’ order in Britain and the cops’ failure to deal with it. last week a gang of Black youths broke into an American candy store in London with nary a cop to be seen. Then there was the disturbances at the Notting Hill Carnival. A Bristol rapper had been stabbed, 209 people arrested for various crimes, including assault and theft, and 74 policemen had been injured. A policewoman had also been sexually assaulted with a gang of men grinding themselves against her. There was also footage of a group of young people dancing on the roof of a bus stop, which promptly crashes down, bring them down on top of the people underneath. On top of this were statistics showing that the police weren’t actually solving ordinary crimes like robberies.

This was contrasted with the woke attitude of the cops. Instead of going out and protecting people and their property, Britain’s finest were joining in with Pride parades. There was footage of a group of four cops doing the macarena at Lincoln Pride, to the dismay and disgust of various right-wing YouTube pundits. This was in addition to previous Pride and pro-gay events the cops had attended. As the Conservative critics showed footage of the Lincolnshire cops doing the macarena, they also shared the strange gay bumblebee costume one copper had worn at another event to stress the force’s pro-gay credentials, various policewomen waving the LGBTQ flag, a police car painted with the gay rainbow. There was also a very odd picture of a police dog handler posing with two gay fetishists dressed in leather dog masks, sitting at the coppers’ feet and wearing leashes. This was an example of the kind of kink seen at Pride events which make some people believe, not unreasonably, that it’s no longer suitable for children.

Talk TV, and to be fair, a number of other right-wingers, including, I think, GB News, showed these pictures as an example of the cops being ‘woke’ and therefore unable to do their jobs properly. Talk TV followed this up with a short questionnaire. Were the police prevented from properly doing their job due to ‘wokeness’ ? Or was it because of the cut to their numbers of 20,000 officers?

Now I don’t think that ‘wokeness’ has helped improve policing, though I well understand the cops’ desire to show the gay community that they’re on their side. As for the Notting Hill carnival, for as long as I can remember there have been murders and other crimes there. Some of it is, I think, simply because of the huge size of the crowd. There were about 2 million people there, or so I heard, and part of the problem was that gangs turned up from other parts of London in the hope of settling scores. There was footage from someone’s window shown, and it looked like a scene from the massively overpopulated future in the Charlton Heston SF flick, Soylent Green, based on the novel Make Room, Make Room by Harry Harrison. I would imagine that a crowd of that size and density would be difficult to police anywhere.

But to me the real problem is simply the shortage of cops and the budget needed to support them. And so I voted in Talk TV’s wretched poll. I appear to have been in the minority: only about 4 per cent or so of the people who responded thought as I did. The other 96 per cent thought it was down to ‘wokeness’.

Which shows you exactly how right-wing Talk TV’s viewers are, how they’re refusing to accept the fact that cuts in manpower and budget have affected policing, even before the cops made such obvious gestures of solidarity with minority groups.

And so they’ll accept and applaud even more cuts to the force, just so long as the remaining cops don’t go to Pride in uniform.

We Own It Petition for the Nationalisation of Failed Energy Company Bulb

August 13, 2022

I got this email this morning from pro-nationalisation organisation We Own It:

‘Dear David,

Privatisation has failed.

The Guardian is saying water should be nationalised. Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown is saying we need to bring energy into public ownership temporarily. Even the Telegraph and the Times are questioning privatisation.

Meanwhile, 100,000 people have pledged to stop paying their energy bills.

YOU can put a solution on the table – sign our new petition for the government to turn Bulb into a new public energy supplier which can cut people’s bills.

Nationalise Bulb

Private energy company Bulb collapsed in November 2021 and the government is planning on spending £2.2 billion to prop it up.

Right now the government is considering giving a further £1 billion to private company Octopus to take over the company.

This makes no sense. Other countries like France, Germany, Italy and the US all have public suppliers of energy. France has used publicly owned EDF to limit energy bill rises to 4% while our bills have gone up by 54% and that increase will go up to 119%!

The government could take Bulb’s 1.7 million customers as the basis of a new publicly owned energy supply company.

Sign the petition now

The situation is desperate and politicians know it. You can highlight this huge opportunity to politicians and the public. You can push for public ownership that can cut everyone’s bills by spreading the word.

Please sign and share now – before the government hands Bulb back to the private sector.

THANK YOU for your support.

Cat, Alice, Johnbosco, Matthew, Jack and Kate – the We Own It team’

I’ve had absolutely no reservations about signing the petition. It makes sense, far more sense than successive right-wing government spaffing public money against the wall trying to prop up failing private companies from a doctrinaire, inflexible belief in the superiority of private enterprise and in order to shove more public money into their friends’ pockets as management and shareholders. And this is an important first step to the nationalisation of the energy sector as a whole.

When even Gordon Brown, Blair’s right-hand man, the Torygraph and the Times are having second thoughts about the privatisation of the utilities, it’s clear that something is profoundly wrong with privatisation.

Thatcherism has failed.

Nationalisation is the solution.

Tories out!

To go directly to the petition if the above links aren’t work, it’s address is at: https://weownit.org.uk/act-now/nationalise-bulb

The Asian Religious Groups Who Defended Sarah Champion’s Remarks about the Grooming Gangs

July 19, 2022

Sarah Champion was the Labour MP for Rochdale, who was forced to resign from the front bench after writing a piece in the Scum stating that the grooming gangs were made up of Pakistani men. Which they largely have been, though not exclusively. Champion was, however, defended by Sara Rowbotham, the council whistleblower who exposed the gangs and there was a letter in the Times by members of the Sikh, Hindu and British Pakistani communities defending her and applauding a female Muslim councillor, who also worked to bring these scumbags to justice. I found this report from the Huffington Post UK by Owen Bennett from the 5th September 2017. It begins

Religious Groups Defend Sarah Champion For Claim UK Has A ‘Problem’ With Pakistani Rapists

‘Victims are being sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.’

A number of Sikh, Hindu and British Parkistani groups have come to the defence of a Labour MP who claimed “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls.”

In a letter to The Times today, representatives of the groups – including Lord Singh of Wimbledon – praised Sarah Champion for taking a “courageous stand” in highlighting “a clear trend in criminality.”

The letter also accused the Labour leadership of having a “weak response” to the issue of grooming gangs.

Champion was sacked from Labour’s Shadow Cabinet after making the comments in an article for The Sun, but in an interview last weekend she defended her words, saying the “floppy left” in her party were too scared of being accused of racism to tackle child sexual exploitation carried out by grooming gangs.

In a letter today, representatives of groups including the Network of Sikh Organisations, the British Pakistani Christian Association and Hindu Council UK, said: “We commend Sarah Champion and the Muslim councillor Amina Lone for speaking up on a clear trend in criminality: the conviction of men of largely Pakistani Muslim heritage in sexual grooming cases.

“Despite being sacked from the shadow cabinet, Champion continues to make a courageous stand.”

The letter argues that it’s not just “white girls who fall victim” to grooming gangs, but youngsters from their respective communities.

“The common denominator is that victims almost always tend to be non-Muslim girls,” the letter reads , adding: “We are dismayed by the Labour leadership’s weak response.

“We are not willing to see the betrayal of victims, who are being sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.

“It’s not racist or Islamophobic to raise a matter of significant public concern. Smearing those speaking an inconvenient truth is unacceptable.”’

For more information, see https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sarah-champion-grooming-gangs_uk_59ae77c2e4b0dfaafcf255ef

This does indicate that there’s a religious component to the grooming gangs predations. Nevertheless, it should not be forgotten either that whatever Tommy Robinson, Britain First or whoever else says, these men were definitely not practicing Muslims. Not when they were into drugs and alcohol, which are definitely forbidden to Muslims, and their crimes have nothing to do with Muslim sex slavery. They were just evil men, preying on the vulnerable, as rapists and child abusers among all races and religions do.

And despite the Tories’ divide and rule strategy, it was Labour MPs who stood up for these girls and who had the backing of a wide section of the Asian community.

Sarah Champion, the Labour MP, Who Warned About the Asian Grooming Gangs

July 19, 2022

As I’ve said in the previous article, the Tories and the populist right are trying to present the grooming gangs scandal as the fault of the Labour party, as the gangs were allowed to get away with their monstrous crimes in towns with Labour-run councils. This is part of a wider strategy of divide and rule to alienate the White working class from the Black and Asian community and the Labour party. But Mark Pattie, one of the many great commenters on this blog, has pointed out that it was the Labour MPs Simon Danczuk and Sarah Champion who worked to bring the gangs to justice. Champion, however, was forced to resign from the Labour front bench after writing a piece in the Scum stating that the gangs were Pakistani. This is largely true, though they also included scumbags of other ethnicities. She was accused of racism, but also had the support of Sara Rowbotham, the whistleblower on the council who exposed the gangs, as well as members of the Sikh, Hindu and Pakistani communities. Rowbotham was also played by the actress Maxine Peake in a BBC drama about the gangs, Three Girls. I found a piece by Rachel Wearmouth in the Huffington Post from 17th September 2017 in which Rowbotham defended Champion. It begins

Rochdale Grooming Scandal Whistleblower Defends Sarah Champion And Slams Austerity

Council worker played by Maxine Peake said the Labour Party has to encourage debate after race row.

The hero whistleblower of the Rochdale abuse scandal has said Sarah Champion should not have lost her job over controversial race comments she made in The Sun.

Champion was sacked as Labour’s shadow women and equalities minister after saying “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men” raping white girls in a column in the newspaper in the wake of fresh grooming prosecutions in Newcastle.

But Sara Rowbotham, the woman lauded for exposing a criminal gang who abused young girls in Rochdale, has defended the Rotherham MP.

Rowbotham, now a Labour councillor, said Champion should not have made “sweeping statements” but told HuffPost UK: “We should be exploring all the issues, not just shutting people down because we don’t like what they are saying.

“Sarah Champion has been a real champion for young people in Rotherham and she has worked hard, but she disappointed me by some of the things that she said, and that she said them in The Sun.”

Corbyn said the Labour Party was “not going to blame any particular group, or demonise any particular group.”

Champion was branded “racist” by many Labour supporters but a number of Sikh, Hindu and British Pakistani groups came to her defence, saying in a letter to The Times she had taken a “courageous stand” in highlighting “a clear trend in criminality.”

Asked if Champion should have kept her job, Rowbotham said “yes,” before adding: “We have to encourage debate.

“If the Labour Party is a broad church then those views should be allowed to be heard but also be heard with something substantial that argues back against it, or that encourages the debate further.”

Rowbotham, who was portrayed by Maxine Peake in the BBC docudrama Three Girls, added: ”[Champion] is a knowledgeable, articulate woman. We benefit from having that debate with her.”’

For further information, please go to https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sara-rowbotham-sarah-champion_uk_59bbad52e4b02da0e14106d5.

I have the greatest respect for Danczuk, Rowbotham and Champion for acting against the gangs, even if some of Champion’s comments were tactless at best. And kudos too to the Asians who supported her. Their support graphically demonstrates that the grooming gangs are not some kind of intrinsic problem within the Asian community or Islam. The gangs were anti-White racists, but they were also just evil men preying on the vulnerable.

We need to bear this in mind and come together to oppose the grooming gangs, along with all other kinds of racism. And very definitely not let the Tories distort this to divide this country’s hard-pressed working people from each other to their benefit and that of an exploitative privileged elite.

A Detransitioner and Two Scientists Refuting the Trans Craze

July 13, 2022

But not, I hasten to add, attacking genuinely trans people. The first of these videos is a panel presentation and discussion put on by the Center for Bioethics and Culture, entitled ‘Questioning the “Science” of the Gender Industry’. The speakers include an evolutionary biologist, an endocrinologist and, especially, a female detransitioner. The blurb for the video on YouTube runs

Moderated by Jennifer Lahl, President of the Center for Bioethics and Culture. Lahl is a filmmaker whose films document the stories of exploitation of women and children caused by #BigFertility and #BigPharma @JenniferLahl on Twitter.

Helena Kerschner, is a 23 year old detransitioned woman who identified as transgender during her teenage years and eventually was presrcibed testosterone shortly after her 18th birthday. After being on testosterone for a year and a half, she realized that transitioning was a misguided way of dealing with her social and emotional struggles. Now, years later, she is interested in exploring the cultural and psychological factors that contribute to the sharp rise in adolescents identifying as transgender and choosing to medically transition with hormones and surgeries. @lacroisz on Twitter

Colin Wright, is an evolutionary biologist, Senior Editor at the Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism (FAIR), and Contributing Editor at Quillette. His writings have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Quillette, The Times, and more. He also writes articles and a weekly newsletter for his website, Reality’s Last Stand, dedicated to keeping the public informed on the sex and gender debate. @swipewright on Twitter

Michael Laidlaw, is an Endocrinologist in Rocklin, CA. He has been specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of gland and hormone disorders for over 16 years. His writings on the topic of medical harms relating to gender dysphoria treatment have been published in medical journals and lay publications. He has spoken on the topic of medical harms and surgical procedures in a number of venues including state legislatures, Washington D.C., and the UK Parliament. He maintains his YouTube channel at “M Laidlaw” and is back on Twitter @@gendersanity’.

The two scientists detail and refute the flawed science used to support the transgender ideology, with Wright also describing how the medical establishment has been captured by younger scientists who are primarily activists. These doctors believe absolutely and unquestioningly in the affirmative care model, even though it is inappropriate for many young people, particularly girls and women, who are experiencing difficulty and confusion with their biological gender. At the same time a very aggressive trans lobby is actively silencing dissenting scientists and medical practitioners by attacking them as prejudice transphobes, using tactics that range from shouting them down to getting them to lose their jobs if they persist.

Helena Kerschner is the first and probably the most important speaker, as she describes the experience of falsely believing that one is trans from her own perspective as someone who has suffered this. And her experience fits exactly the social contagion model of the expansion of girls and young women, who sucker themselves into believing that they’re really boys. She was a lonely child, who didn’t make friends well at school and there was tension with her parents at home, particularly her mother. She was especially unusual in that she had different musical tastes that the other kids around her. Instead of contemporary pop and rock, she was into Elvis. Well, he was the King of rock’n’roll! She found a community of other young Elvis fans on Tumblr, but had a problem fitting in there as it’s very ‘woke’. If you’re White and not trans, you’re one of the racial and gender oppressors. In order to fit in and keep her new friends, she declared herself nonbinary and adopted he/him pronouns. This then led to her wondering whether she really was trans, and set her on the road to medical treatment. She started taking testosterone, but stopped and abandoned the treatment after she realised that she wasn’t actually trans, but simply a mixed up kid with mental problems, partly caused by her home situation.

It’s a long video at 1hr 37mins, but worth watching. If you can’t watch all of it, but are interested in hearing the other side of this issue, please view Helena Kerschner’s talk. It’s from a personal point of view that you won’t hear from the lamestream media or the official gay organisations like Stonewall.

Professional Therapist Stephanie Winn Interviewed by Trans-Critical Author Helen Joyce about the Myth of Gender Conversion Therapy

July 4, 2022

On Saturday I posted a piece about the email I received from the chair of LGBTQ+ Labour and Anneliese Dodds about the Labour party’s proposed policies for gay and trans people and their intention to give them greater protection under the Equality legislation. I have no problem with gay equality. What does concern me is the pair’s proposals to ban trans conversion therapy alongside gay conversion therapy. Gay conversion was a brutal form of what can only be described as medicalised torture. Clive Simpson, a gay YouTuber, has described its horrors in one of the videos I put up yesterday to support some of the points I made in my reply to the Labour party. Gay conversion therapy used aversion therapy to try to ‘cure’ gay men of their sexual attraction to other men. They were given electric shocks while being shown pictures of naked men. Alternatively, they were given drugs that made them sick. They were also locked in their rooms for three days at a time, not allowed out even to go to the toilet. They were also deprived of food and water as this was also believed to make the process more effective. I have absolutely no hesitation in describing this treatment as hell, and that the people inflicting it on their patients were sadists. Such procedures have, however, been mercifully illegal since the 1970s.

There is a profound difference between gay conversion therapy and supposed trans conversion therapy. The activists demanding a ban on trans conversion therapy do not say what they consider trans conversion therapy to be. There’s thus a real fear that any such ban will mean that the only legally permitted form of treatment for gender-confused and trouble children and adults will be the affirmative model. This form of states mandates the therapist to agree with the patient that they really are of a different gender than their biological body, and must set them on the path for medical transition. This may be appropriate for some, but not all, as many sufferers who believed they were trans had underlying mental health or emotional issues which were the real sources of their confusion, and which should have received treatment instead. There is a growing community of detransitioners who believed they were trans, underwent clinical transition, but now believe they were wrong and are trying to get back, as far as possible, to their birth gender. There is an online community of 20,000 of them and its seems some of them are considering legal action against the therapists who put them on the trans pathway.

Stephanie Winn is a licensed therapist and councillor in Oregon in the US. She is also the host of this, the ‘You Must Be Some Kind of Therapist’ podcast. In this edition of the podcast, she’s interviewed by former Economist journo and anti-trans author Helen Joyce about how she came to be opposed to the affirmation-only model while treating confused teens. She speaks about the dangers of the laws in America as enacted in individual states, which seek to outlaw gender conversion therapy, as a result of which she stopped treating children and moved instead to setting up help groups for adults with children experiencing these problems. Because of this and her social media presence, she was targeted by trans rights activists and a former member of one these support groups, who complained to the board about her. She describes her struggle to combat these false allegations and her eventual success. She also goes through the specific Oregon legislation banning gay and trans conversion therapy, showing that it’s unnecessary and actually harmful in the case of trans people. She also foresees a time when the ban on trans conversion therapy will be seen in its way as savage and barbarous as lobotomy and other discredited and deeply unethical medical practices.

The blurb for the podcast reads

’11. ”Helen Joyce: Debunking the Myth of Conversion Therapy’, I recently emerged victorious from a harrowing battle and successfully defended myself against false allegations of “conversion therapy.” Part of how I got through the stress of it all was envisioning that some day I would be able to use my story to encourage and inspire others. But what I couldn’t have imagined was that I’d share it with the illustrious Helen Joyce. Under any other circumstances I would have loved to interview Helen. But in this conversation, she actually interviewed me, in the hopes that my story could help her organization demonstrate to UK officials how including “gender identity change efforts” in its “conversion therapy bans” could backfire. So today, this is my story: where I started off; my experiences as a gender-affirming therapist; what brought me around to seeing matters differently; why I decided to take a stand against gender ideology and medicalization; how I found the courage to share my views publicly; who targeted me, and why; how I defeated them; and what I want lawmakers around the world to understand about these proposed “conversion therapy bans” (hint: they’re not what they seem.) This is a very timely conversation, so I bumped it to the front of the queue and am publishing it right away. I hope to have Helen back another time to discuss her own ideas. But for now, I really appreciate this opportunity to share my story with Helen, and the world. If I do say so myself, this is an important conversation for therapists, governing bodies, lawmakers, those seeking therapy, and anyone who cares about the treatment of gender issues in today’s society. Helen Joyce is author of “TRANS: When Ideology Meets Reality”, published in July 2021 by OneWorld and in paperback since May 2022. A Times of London and Spectator book of the year, it is a UK and Amazon top ten bestseller. It received rave reviews in publications ranging from the Telegraph to the New York Times, and endorsements from, among others, Daniel Dennett (“A sane, humane book”), Lionel Shriver (“Utterly unintimidated by extremist orthodoxy”) and Richard Dawkins (“Thoroughly researched, passionate and very brave”). Helen now works as Director of Advocacy for Sex Matters, a human-rights organization that campaigns for sex-based rights. Her journalism can be found on her website: thehelenjoyce.com’.

In the podcast, Winn makes the point that the barbarous methods of gay conversion therapy are now illegal. Sexual orientation is fixed, and these methods were absolutely failures. They could not prevent gay men from still being attracted to other men, and certainly couldn’t make them attracted to women. All they could do is destroy their self-esteem. Gender-identity, on the other hand, is, in her words, incredibly mercurial. She makes the point that there are underlying mental issues with many of the teenagers experiencing difficulties with their birth gender. Sometimes these are mental health problems or mental conditions like autism, which can give some of the symptoms that may be interpreted as trans. Sometimes they’re internalised misogyny or homophobia. She talks about instances where the sufferer or their families believe it’s preferable to have a live daughter than a dead gay son. She also saw many lesbian girls, who seemed to want to transition partly out of loneliness. As lesbians they were in a narrower pool of potential romantic and sexual partners than if they were men. Part of the process of treating them involved reconciling them to the fact that as lesbians, they would have more difficulty finding partners, but that it was all right to be gay.

She makes it very clear that she’s opposed to gay conversion therapy, and that there’s nothing wrong with being gay. It doesn’t hurt anyone, except where there’s homophobia, and doesn’t cost anything. The affirmative-only model, however, sets gender confused people on a long medical process of puberty blocking drugs, cross-sex hormones and finally surgery. This has profoundly detrimental effects on the patients’ lives and health. The drugs and hormones actually shorten their lives and the treatment as whole sterilises them and leads them unable to experience orgasm, an important part of sexual relationships. She is afraid that the poor health many trans people therefore suffer will leave them vulnerable to suicide.

She also believes very strongly that the contemporary explosion of Rapid Onset Dysmorphia amongst girls is a social contagion. Previously there was only a small number of people seeking treatment as trans, and they were mostly boys. Now its a large number of girls. It looks very much to her like a social contagion, passed on by teenagers and young people reading about it on the internet. She is also concerned about children using the threat of committing suicide to force their parents and therapists into accepting that they are really of the desired opposite gender. This is another tactic kids have picked up from the Net. She talks about how she set up her support group for the parents of trans-identifying kids to reassure them that they were right and not the bigots their children and trans activists accused them of being. This, however, allowed one woman, who only attended the group once, to accuse her of malpractice. She was able to seek very capable legal advice, and the case was eventually dismissed. She also pre-empted the trans activists attack on her for what she was posting about on the Net by informing the ethics board first, resulting in their accusations also being dismissed.

She states very clearly that the affirmative-only model is not the sole method of treatment. For the majority of gender confused kids it is only a phase they go through before emerging as gay adults. And that’s fine by her. There are also plenty of other therapies and forms of counselling that can effectively treat the condition so that the sufferers do not have to transition. What therapists should not be doing is giving in to children who insist they are of different gender. These are teenagers, and no-one makes sensible decisions or knows what’s really best for them as a teenager. Many of them are uncomfortable going through puberty, and Winn asks if anyone was ever comfortable with this period in their lives. Unfortunately, the law has given these children a terrible weapon to use against those therapists who disagree with them and believe it is more appropriate to use alternative forms of therapy. She also states that if all the therapists were like her and stood up against the affirmation model, then the laws banning gender conversion would be struck down. But they’re not. Many are afraid of their patients suing them if they don’t agree with them. She concludes by saying that people must stand up as the responsible adults to this oppressive, harmful attitude. She compares it to an incident when her 13 year old son accidentally drilled into his hand. This caused a lot of pain and distress, but the injury wasn’t serious. And so, she says, into gender confusion. But she is very critical of the passage in Oregonian legislation that states that gender confusion is not a mental disorder. She states that according to the accepted medical definitions, a mental disorder is a condition that causes distress so extreme that the person experiencing it is unable to get on with their lives properly. And most trans people do indeed spend their time consumed with this problem to their great distress. She also observes that there has been a mental change in young people generally. While previous generations were more outward-oriented, geared towards others, this one has become more inward-oriented, obsessed with how they present and what others will think of them. She states that when she started off, she believed that most of the issues she would experience with girls would be about crushes. But it isn’t. She therefore spent her time treating girls by telling them that not everyone would like them, and some would even actively dislike them, but that this was normal and natural.

The pair discuss what the proposed legislation about banning gender conversion therapy may mean in England. Winn tries to answer the question by citing her experience as a therapist in Oregon. Winn states that gay conversion therapy is already banned, and all trans conversion therapy means is that someone questioned whether the patient really was a member of the opposite sex to that of their birth. She is also expresses the same scepticism towards the statistics cited in the Oregon legislation, though she accepts that some of the people cited as having experienced gay conversion therapy are probably older men, who really did go through such horrific maltreatment. When it comes to England, the pair hope that such legislation banning gender conversion will be rejected by MPs and voted down.

This is a fascinating video, as a proper, licensed therapist Winn is well worth listening to for her criticisms of the trans ideology, the affirmative-care model of treatment, and the misguided laws that mandate and support this. The podcast is, however, 2 hours and four minutes long, so if you listen to it, you may wish to do so in sections.

A Liberal Muslim’s Journey through Islamic Britain and the Dangers of Muslim Separatism

June 30, 2022

Ed Hussain, Among the Mosques: A Journey Across Muslim Britain (London: Bloomsbury 2021)

Ed Hussain is a journalist and the author of two previous books on Islam, the House of Islam, which came out in 2018, and The Islamist of 2007. He’s also written for a series of newspapers and magazines, including the Spectator, the Telegraph, the Times, the New York Times and the Guardian. He’s also appeared on the Beeb and CNN. He’s an adjunct professor at Georgetown University and has been a member of various think tanks, including the Council on Foreign Relations. The House of Islam is an introduction to Islamic history and culture from Mohammed onwards. According to the blurb, it argues that Islam isn’t necessarily a threat to the West but a peaceful ally. The Islamist was his account of his time in Hizb ut-Tahrir, a militant Islamic organisation dedicated to restoring the caliphate. This was quoted in Private Eye, where a passage in the book revealed that the various leaders Tony Blair appealed to as part of his campaign against militant, extremist Islam weren’t the moderates they claimed to be, but the exact type of people Blair was trying to combat. Among the Mosques continues this examination and critical scrutiny of caliphism, the term he uses to describe the militant to set up the caliphate. This is an absolute Islamic state, governed by a caliph, a theocratic ruler, who is advised by a shura, or council. This, however, would not be like parliament as only the caliph would have the power to promulgate legislation. Hussain is alarmed at how far this anti-democratic ideology has penetrated British Islam. To find out, he travelled to mosques across Britain – Dewsbury, Manchester, Blackburn, Bradford, Birmingham and London in England, Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland, the Welsh capital Cardiff, and Belfast in Northern Ireland. Once there, he goes to the local mosques unannounced, observes the worshippers, and talks to them, the imams and other local people. And he’s alarmed by what he sees.

Caliphism Present in Mosques of Different Sects

The mosques he attends belong to a variety of Islamic organisations and denominations. Dewsbury is the centre of the Deobandi movement, a Muslim denomination set up in Pakistan in opposition to British imperialism. Debandis worship is austere, rejecting music, dance and art. The Barelwi mosque he attends in Manchester, on the hand, is far more joyful. The Barelwis are based on an Indian Sufi preacher, who attempted to spread Islam through music and dance. Still other mosques are Salafi, following the fundamentalist brand of Islam that seeks to revive the Islam of the salaf, the Prophet’s companions, and rejects anything after the first three generations of Muslims as bid’a, innovations. But across these mosques, with a few exceptions, there is a common strand of caliphism. The Deobandi order are concerned with the moral reform and revival of Muslim life and observance, but not political activism, in order to hasten the emergence of the caliphate. Similar desires are found within the Tableegh-e Jama’at, another Muslim revivalist organisation founded in Pakistan. This is comparable to the Jehovah’s Witnesses in Christianity, in that its method of dawa, Muslim evangelism, is to knock on lax Muslims’ doors and appealing to them become more religious. It’s a male-only organisation, whose members frequently go off on trips abroad. While the preaching in Manchester Central Mosque is about peace, love and tolerance as exemplified in the Prophet’s life, the Barelwis themselves can also be intolerant. Mumtaz Qadri, the assassin of Salman Taseer, the governor of the Punjab, was a member of the Barelwi Dawat-e-Islami. He murdered Taseer, whose bodyguard he was, because Taseer has dared to defend Pakistani Christians accused of blasphemy. Under strict Islamic law, they were gustakh-e Rasool, a pejorative term for ‘insulter of the Prophet’. The penalty for such blasphemy was wajib-e qatl, a mandatory death. Despite being tried and executed, Qadri is regarded by many of the Pakistani faithful as a martyr, and a massive mosque complex has grown up to commemorate him. In his meetings with various imams and ordinary Muslims, Hussain asks if they agree with the killing of blasphemers like Taseer, and the author Salman Rushdie, who had a fatwa and bounty placed on his life by the Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran for his book, The Satanic Reverses. Some of them give evasive replies. One imam even defends it, claiming that Rushdie deserved death because he insulted love, as represented by Mohammed and Islam. A Muslim female friend dodges answering by telling him she’s have to ask her husband.

In the mosques’ libraries he finds books promoting the Caliphist ideology, denouncing democracy, immodest dress and behaviour in women, who are commanded to be available for their husband’s sexual pleasure, even when their bodies are running with pus. Some are explicitly Islamist, written by Sayyid Qutb and his brother, the founders of modern militant Islamism. These mosques can be extremely large, serving 500 and more worshippers, and Hussain is alarmed by the extremely conservative, if not reactionary attitudes in many of them. In many, women are strictly segregated and must wear proper Islamic dress – the chador, covering their hair and bodies. The men also follow the model of Mohammed himself in their clothing, wearing long beards and the thawb, the long Arab shirt. But Hussain makes the point that in Mohammed’s day, there was no distinctive Muslim dress: the Prophet wore what everyone in 7th century Arabia wore, including Jews, Christians and pagans. He has a look around various Muslim schools, and is alarmed by their demand for prepubescent girls to wear the hijab, which he views as sexualising them. Some of these, such as the Darul Ulooms, concentrate almost exclusively on religious education. He meets a group of former pupils who are angry at their former school’s indoctrination of them with ancient, but fabricated hadiths about the Prophet which sanction slavery, the inferior status of women, and the forced removal of Jews and Christians from the Arabian peninsula. They’re also bitter at the way these schools did not teach them secular subjects, like science, literature and art, and so prepare them for entering mainstream society. This criticism has also been levelled Muslim organisations who have attacked the Darul Uloom’s narrow focus on religion. The worshippers and students at these mosques and their schools reject the dunya, the secular world, and its fitna, temptations. One Spanish Muslim has immigrated to England to get away from the nudist beaches in his home country. And the Muslim sections of the towns he goes to definitely do not raise the Pride flag for the LGBTQ community.

Hussain Worried by Exclusively Muslim Areas with No White Residents

Hussain is also alarmed at the way the Muslim districts in many of the towns he visits have become exclusively Muslim quarters. All the businesses are run by Muslims, and are geared to their needs and tastes, selling Muslim food, clothing, perfume and literature. Whites are absent, living in their own districts. When he does see them, quite often they’re simply passing through. In a pub outside Burnley he talks to a couple of White men, who tell him how their children have been bullied and beaten for being goras, the pejorative Asian term for Whites. Other Whites talk about how the local council is keen to build more mosques, but applications by White residents to put up flagpoles have been turned down because the council deems them racist. Hussain objects to these monocultures. Instead, he praises areas like the section of Edinburgh, where the Muslim community coexists with Whites and other ethnicities. There’s similar physical mixture of Muslim and non-Muslim in the Bute area of Cardiff, formerly Tiger Bay, which has historically been a multicultural cultural area. In the mosque, however, he finds yet again the ideology of cultural and religious separatism.

The Treatment of Women

He is also very much concerned about the treatment of women, and especially their vulnerability before the sharia courts that have sprung up. A few years ago there were fears of a parallel system of justice emerging, but the courts deal with domestic issues, including divorce. They have been presented as informal systems of marriage reconciliation. This would all be fine if that was all they were. But the majority of the mosques Hussain visits solely perform nikah, Muslim weddings. Under British law, all weddings, except those in an Anglican church, must also be registered with the civil authorities. These mosques don’t. As a result, wives are left at the mercy of Islamic law. These give the husband, but not the wife, the power of divorce., and custody of the children if they do. Hussain meets a battered Muslim woman, whose controlling husband nearly killed her. The case was brought before the local sharia court. The woman had to give evidence from another room, and her husband was able to defeat her request for a divorce by citing another hadith maintaining that husbands could beat their wives.

London Shias and the Procession Commemorating the Deaths of Ali, Hassan and Hussain

Hussain’s a Sunni, and most of the mosques he attends are also of that orthodox branch of Islam. In London, he attends a Shia mosque, and is shocked and horrified by the self-inflicted violence performed during their commemoration of the Battle of Karbala. Shias believe that Ali, the Prophet’s son-in-law, was the true successor to Mohammed as the leader of the early Muslim community. He was passed over, and made a bid for the caliphate, along with his two sons, Hasan and Hussain, who were finally defeated by the Sunnis at the above battle. This is commemorated by Shias during the month of Moharram, when there are special services at the mosque and the jaloos, a commemorative procession. During the services and the processions, Shias express their grief over their founders’ martyrdom by beating their chests, matam, faces and whipping themselves. They also slash themselves with swords. All this appears to go on at the London mosque, to Hussain’s horror. He is particularly disturbed by young children beating their chests and faces in the worship the night before, and wonders how this isn’t child abuse.

Separatist Attitudes and Political Activism in Mosques

He is also concerned about the political separatism and activism he sees in some of the mosques. They don’t pray for the Queen, as Christians and Jews do, but there are prayers for the Muslim community throughout the world and funeral prayers for Morsi, the former Islamist president of Egypt. He finds mosques and Islamic charities working for Muslims abroad, and activists campaigning on behalf on Palestine, Kashmir and other embattled Muslim countries and regions, but not for wider British society. Some of the worshippers and Imams share his concern. One Muslim tells him that the problem isn’t the Syrian refugees. They are medical men and women, doctors, nurses and technicians. The problem is those asylum seekers from areas and countries which have experienced nothing but war and carnage. These immigrants have trouble adapting to peace in Britain. This leads to activism against the regimes in the countries they have fled. Afghan and Kurdish refugees are also mentioned as donning masks looking for fights. Some of the worshippers in the mosques Hussain attends had connections to ISIS. In London he recalls meeting a glum man at a mosque in 2016. The man had toured the Middle East and Muslim Britain asking for signatures in a petition against ISIS. The Middle Eastern countries had willingly given theirs. But an academic, a White convert who taught at British university, had refused. Why? He objected to the paragraph in the petition denouncing ISIS’ enslavement of Yazidi and other women. This was in the Quran, he said, and so he wouldn’t contradict it. This attitude from a British convert shocked the man, as usually objections to banning slavery come from Mauretania and Nigeria, where they are resented as western interference. And in another mosque in Bradford, he is told by the imam that he won’t allow the police to come in and talk about the grooming gangs. The gangs used drugs and alcohol, which are forbidden in Islam and so are not connected to the town’s mosques.

Islamophobia against Northern Irish Muslims

But Islam isn’t a monolith and many Muslims are far more liberal and engaged with modern western society. Going into an LGBTQ+ help centre, he’s met by a Muslim woman on the desk. This lady’s straight and married, but does not believes there’s any conflict between her faith and working for a gay organisation. And in reply to his question, she tells him that her family most certainly do know about it. He meets two female Muslim friends, who have given up wearing the hijab. One did so after travelling to Syria to study. This convinced her that it was a pre-Islamic custom, and she couldn’t find any support for it in the Quran. She also rejected it after she was told at university that it was feminist, when it wasn’t. In Belfast he visits a mosque, which, contrary to Islamic custom, is run by two women. The worship appears tolerant, with members of different Muslims sects coming peacefully together, and the values are modern. But this is an embattled community. There is considerable islamophobia in Northern Ireland, with Muslims sufferings abuse and sometimes physical assault. One Protestant preacher stirred up hate with a particularly islamophobic sermon. Many of the mosque’s congregation are converts, and they have been threatened at gun point for converting as they are seen as leaving their communities. Travelling through Protestant and Roman Catholic Belfast, Hussain notices the two communities’ support for different countries. On the Nationalist side of the peace walls are murals supporting India and Palestine. The Loyalists, on the other hand, support Israel. But back in London he encounters more, very modern liberal attitudes during a conversation with the two daughters of a Muslim women friends. They are very definitely feminists, who tell him that the problem with Islam, is, no offence, his sex. They then talk about how toxic masculinity has been a bad influence on British Islam.

Liberal Islam and the Support of the British Constitution

In his travels oop north, Hussain takes rides with Muslim taxi drivers, who are also upset at these all-Muslim communities. One driver laments how the riots of 2011 trashed White businesses, so the Whites left. In Scotland, another Muslim cabbie, a technician at the local uni, complains about Anas Sarwar, the first Muslim MP for Scotland. After he left parliament, Sarwar left to become governor of the Punjab in Pakistan. The cabbie objects to this. In his view, the man was serving just Muslims, not Scotland and all of its people. During ablutions at a mosque in Edinburgh, he meets a British army officer. The man is proud to serve with Her Majesty’s forces and the army has tried to recruit in the area. But despite their best efforts and wishes, Muslims don’t wish to join.

In London, on the other hand, he talks to a modern, liberal mullah, Imam Jalal. Jalal has studied all over the world, but came back to Britain because he was impressed with the British constitution’s enshrinement of personal liberty and free speech. He believes that the British constitution expresses the maqasid, the higher objectives Muslim scholars identified as the root of the sharia as far back al-Juwaini in the 11th century. Jalal also tells him about al-shart, a doctrine in one of the Muslim law schools that permits women to divorce their husbands. The marriage law should be reformed so that the nikah becomes legal, thus protecting Muslim wives with the force of British law. And yes, there would be an uproar if prayers for the Queen were introduced in the mosques, but it could be done. Both he and Hussain talk about how their father came to Britain in the late 50s and early 60s. They wore three-piece suits, despite the decline of the empire, were proud to be British. There was time in this country when Muslims were respected. In one factory, when a dispute broke out, the foreman would look for a Muslim because they had a reputation for honesty. The Muslim community in these years would have found the race riots and the terrorist bombings of 7/7 and the Ariana Grande concert simply unbelievable. Had someone told them that this would happen, they would have said he’d been watching too much science fiction.

Muslim Separatism and the Threat of White British Fascism

Hanging over this book is the spectre of demographic change. The Muslim population is expected to shoot up to 18 million later in the century and there is the real prospect of Britain becoming a Muslim majority country. In fact, as one of the great commenters here has pointed out, this won’t happen looking at the available data. If Scotland goes its own way, however, the proportion of Muslims in England will rise to 12 per cent, the same as France and Belgium. For Hussain, it’s not a question of how influential Islam will be in the future, but the type of Islam we will have. He is afraid of Muslim majority towns passing laws against everything the Muslim community considers forbidden. And as politicians, particularly Jeremy Corbyn and the Muslim politicos in the Labour party treat Muslims as a solid block, rather than individuals, he’s afraid that Muslim communalism and its sense of a separate identity will increase. This may also produce a corresponding response in the White, Christian-origin English and Brits. We could see the rise of nationalist, anti-Islam parties. At one point he foresees three possible futures. One is that the mosques will close the doors and Muslims will become a separate community. Another is mass deportations, including self-deportations. But there are also reasons to be optimistic. A new, British Islam is arising through all the ordinary Muslims finding ways to accommodate themselves within liberal, western society. They’re doing it quietly, unobtrusively in ordinary everyday matters, underneath all the loud shouting of the Islamists.

The Long Historical Connections between Britain and Islam

In his conclusion, Hussain points out that Islam and Britain have a long history together. Queen Elizabeth I, after her excommunication by the Pope, attempted to forge alliance with the Ottoman Sultan. She succeeded in getting a trading agreement with the Turkish empire. In the 17th century, the coffee shop was introduced to Britain by a Greek-Turk. And in the 8th century Offa, the Anglo-Saxon king of Mercia, used Muslim dirhams as the basis for his coinage. This had the Muslim creed in Arabic, with his head stamped in the middle of the coin. Warren Hastings, who began the British conquest of India, opened a madrassa, sitting on its governing board and setting up its syllabus. This is the same syllabus used in the narrowly religious Muslim schools, so he’s partly to blame for them. During the First World War 2.5 million Muslims from India willingly fought for Britain. Muslim countries also sheltered Jews from the horrors of Nazi persecution. He’s also impressed with the immense contribution Muslims gave to the rise of science, lamenting the superstition he sees in some Muslim communities. He really isn’t impressed by one book on sale in a Muslim bookshop by a modern author claiming to have refuted the theory that the Earth goes round the sun.

To Combat Separatism and Caliphism, Celebrate British Values of Freedom and the Rule of Law

But combatting the Muslims separatism is only one half of the solution. Muslims must have something positive in wider mainstream society that will attract them to join. For Hussain, this is patriotism. He quotes the late, right-wing philosopher Roger Scruton and the 14th century Muslim historian ibn Khaldun on patriotism and group solidarity as an inclusive force. He cites polls showing that 89 per cent of Brits are happy with their children marrying someone of a different ethnicity. And 94 per cent of Brits don’t believe British nationality is linked to whiteness. He maintains that Brits should stop apologising for the empire, as Britain hasn’t done anything worse than Russia or Turkey. He and Imam Jalal also point out that the Turkish empire also committed atrocities, but Muslims do not decry them. Rather, the case of a Turkish TV show celebrating the founder of the Turkish empire, have toured Britain and received a warm welcome at packed mosques. He points out that he and other Muslims are accepted as fellow Brits here. This is not so in other countries, like Nigeria and Turkey, where he could live for decades but wouldn’t not be accepted as a Nigerian or Turk. And we should maintain our country’s Christian, Protestant heritage because this is ultimately the source of the values that underlie British secular, liberal society.

He also identifies six key values which Britain should defend and celebrate. These are:

  1. The Rule of Law. This is based on Henry II’s synthesis of Norman law and Anglo-Saxon common law, to produce the English common law tradition, including Magna Carta. This law covers everyone, as against the sharia courts, which are the thin end of an Islamist wedge.
  2. Individual liberty. The law is the protector of individual liberty. Edward Coke, the 17th century jurist, coined the phrase ‘an Englishman’s home is his castle’. He also said that ‘Magna Carta is such a fellow he will have no sovereign’ It was this tradition of liberty that the Protestant emigrants took with them when they founded America.
  3. Gender equality – here he talks about a series of strong British women, including Boadicea, the suffragettes, Queen Elizabeth and, in Johnson’s opinion, Maggie Thatcher. He contrasts this with the Turkish and other Muslim empires, which have never had a female ruler.
  4. Openness and tolerance – here he talks about how Britain has sheltered refugees and important political thinkers, who’ve defended political freedoms like the Austrians Wittgenstein and Karl Popper.
  5. Uniqueness. Britain is unique. He describes how, when he was at the Council for Foreign Relations, he and his fellows saw the Arab Spring as like Britain and America. The revolutionaries were fighting for liberty and secularism. There was talk amongst the Americans of 1776. But the revolutionaries didn’t hold western liberal values.
  6. Racial Parity. Britain is not the same nation that support racists like Enoch Powell. He points to the German roots of the royal family, and that Johnson is part Turkish while members of his cabinet also come from ethnic minorities. Britain is not like France and Germany, where Muslims are seen very much as outsiders.

Whatever your party political opinions, I believe that these really are fundamental British values worth preserving. Indeed, they’re vital to our free society. On the other hand, he also celebrates Adam Smith and his theories of free trade as a great British contribution, because it allowed ordinary people and not just the mercantilist elite to get wealthy. Er, no, it doesn’t. But in a book like this you can’t expect everything.

Criticisms of Hussain’s Book

Hussain’s book caused something of a storm on the internet when it was released. The peeps on Twitter were particularly upset by the claims of Muslims bullying and violence towards Whites. There was a series of posts saying that he’d got the location wrong, and that the area in question was posh White area. In fact the book makes it clear he’s talking about a Muslim enclave. What evidently upset people was the idea that Muslims could also be racist. But some Muslims are. Way back c. 1997 Yasmin Alibhai-Brown wrote a report for the Committee for Racial Equality as it was then on anti-White Asian and Black hatred and violence. Racism can be found amongst people of all colours and religions, including Muslims.

People were also offended by his statement that in the future there could be mass deportations of Muslims. From the discussion about this on Twitter, you could be misled into thinking he was advocating it. But he doesn’t. He’s not Tommy Robinson or any other member of the far right. He’s horrified by this as a possibility, a terrible one he wishes to avoid. But these criticism also show he’s right about another issue: people don’t have a common language to talk about the issues and problems facing Britain and its Muslim communities. These need to be faced up to, despite the danger of accusations of racism and islamophobia. Tanjir Rashid, reviewing it for the Financial Times in July 2021, objected to the book on the grounds that Hussain’s methodology meant that he ignored other Muslim networks and had only spoken to out-of-touch mullahs. He pointed instead to an Ipsos-Mori poll showing that 88 per cent of Muslims strong identified with Britain, seven out of ten believed Islam and modern British society were compatible and only one per cent wanted separate, autonomous Muslim communities. It’s possible that if Hussain had also travelled to other towns where the Muslim population was smaller and more integrated with the non-Muslim population, he would have seen a very different Islam.

Intolerant Preaching Revealed by Channel 4 Documentary

On the other hand, the 2007 Channel 4 documentary, Undercover Mosque, found a venomous intolerance against Christians, Jews and gays being preached in a hundred mosques. A teacher was effectively chased out of his position at a school in Batley because he dared to show his pupils the Charlie Hebdo cartoons in a class on tolerance. He is still in hiding, fearing for his life. Hussain cites government statistics that 43,000 people are under police surveillance because political extremism, 90 per cent of whom are Muslims.

These are vital questions and issues, and do need to be tackled. When I studied Islam in the 90s, I came across demands in the Muslim literature I was reading for separate Muslim communities governed by Islamic law. This was accompanied by the complaint that if this wasn’t granted, then Britain wasn’t truly multicultural. More recently I saw the same plea in a book in one of Bristol’s secondhand and remaindered bookshops, which based its argument on the British colonisation of America, in which peoples from different nationalities were encouraged to settle in English territories, keeping their languages and law. It might be that the mullahs are preaching separatism, but that hardly anybody in the Muslim community is really listening or actually want the caliphate or a hard line separate Muslim religious identity.

Conclusion

I do believe, however, that it is an important discussion of these issues and that the sections of the book, in which liberal Muslims, including Hussain himself, refute the vicious intolerance preached by the militants, are potentially very helpful. Not only could they help modern Muslims worried by such intolerant preaching and attitudes, and help them to reject and refute them, but they also show that a modern, liberal, western Islam is very possible and emerging, in contradiction to Fascists and Islamophobes like Tommy Robinson.