The BNP say goodbye to Lee John Barnes

Lee John Barnes, the subject of much fun for many anti-fascist bloggers, will no longer act as legal director for the British National Party.

In his resignation letter (which you can read on his website, you know where it is, no links from here) he despairs at the “avoidable court cases” the BNP have become involved in under the orders of “Nick Griffin and Jim Dowson [who] have repeatedly chosen to break the most obvious of laws”.

Those cases, LJB cites as:

LJB has accused Griffin of ignoring his advice, then later referring to him in an Employment Tribunal as a ‘crank’.

During the conclusion of his rambling resignation (3000 words in length), LJB admits that he:

cannot remain as the Legal Officer of a party that acts unlawfully towards its own members, that rewards years of party loyalty with unlawful suspensions and expulsions, that covers up serious allegations of sexual abuse by senior officers, that expels long standing members who ask for financial transparency within the party and that refuses to act to protect its own officers when they are threatened with violence by other senior officers.

He finishes up by saying: “[s]uch a political party cannot be trusted with political power in our society.”

On his blog, LJB accuses BNP officers such as Griffin, Andrew Brons, Simon Darby and Andrew Moffat, of “going around telling people [he] was ‘expelled’ and that [he] did not resign.” He goes on to explain how “[t]hey are paid to lie – to the members and the public” and that he does “so despise liars and idiots” and who he calls “the Griffinite idiot squad.”

Clues of an unsteady relationship between LBJ and other members of the BNP hierarchy had been present for some time. Griffin, notably uncomfortable talking about LJB, told Iain Dale during an interview for Total Politics, that he is “a very strange and complex character”.

Dale wondered why Griffin continues to employ “someone obsessed by Jewish issues to hold national office in the BNP” to which Griffin replied:

As I say, if you look at his blogs and his arguments with people in the round, you will see that he’s one of the people who’s taken the obsession with Jews out of the BNP. It was there. But he’s one of the ones who’ve taken it out by putting it in context.

Reading what LJB has said before about Jewish conspiracies, it is difficult to place what “context” Griffin is talking of here; but then this is a man who thinks the English Defence League are run by Zionists and who has authored a book called Who are the Mindbenders? about the Jewish dominated media – perhaps not the greatest authority on the subject.

We all have our favourite LJB moments, whether here or here, and now that he has stopped pulling his hair out over the stupid BNP, no doubt he will have more time to appeal to his Norse Gods and troll websites seeking out undercover Jewish plots – though he will not be welcomed.

Peter Tatchell, Nick Griffin, and foul mouth called Tony Gladwin

Human rights activist and campaigner Peter Tatchell threw himself in front of BNP leader Nick Griffin today at the Westminster BBC studios, while Griffin spoke to the press about his letter of invitation to the Queen’s garden party – which had today been withdrawn.

Tatchell called Griffin “a gutless coward” and pressured him to apologise for the BNP’s history of anti-semitism, homophobia and Islamophobic views, before Griffin left the site and two of his bodyguards pulled Tatchell away.

Tatchell, as he was being dragged by two guards down the stairs, bellowed: “this is the BNP in action, look at them, look at them, thugs” – before a voice requested they leave Tatchell alone, and follow Griffin away from the scene.

One of Griffin’s entourage may seem familiar to the eagle eyed: Tony Gladwin (wearing blue) was once the British National Party Parliamentary candidate for Southend West.

The website councilbust profile him as:

a single 26 year old builder, [who] lives in Billericay with his mother. He is known to have worked as security for BNP leader Nick Griffin, and stood as an Essex County Councillor in the last round of elections.

The website also mentions his Facebook messages on the night of Griffin’s Question Time, where he said:

CANT WAIT TILL 2MORRA! LOOK 4 ME ON THE NEWS STOMPIN SUM PATHETIC RED SCUMBAG’S HEAD IN!

but coz of the old bill doin der job 4 once in der traitorous lives, i might not b able 2 play with dem.”

He has fully admitted the messages now.

Hope not Hate have reported on Gladwin posting “offensive jokes on his Facebook page ridiculing victims of the thalidomide tragedy, who suffered severe birth defects as a result of the drug.”

Regarding the threat to march through the streets of Wooton Bassett by disgraceful group Islam4UK, Gladwin posted on his Facebook page:

just tink this is the only country in the world dat allows foreigners 2 shit on the graves of our war heroes in public (with a police escort!) and get away with it but if u shout out naughty words dat offends them u get banged up!

u gota laugh or u’ll cry or become a serial killer lol”

People Griffin considers trustworthy enough to be his heavies are little more than violent, offensive, racist thugs.

What is Nick Griffin’s invitation withdrawal symbolic of?

re the decision to withdraw Nick Griffin’s invitation from Buckingham palace, many comments have been made, supporting the decision and opposing it. See the following:

Unite Against Fascism said the decision to bar the far right leader was “fantastic”” and “Events like this help to make Nick Griffin and the BNP seem legitimate in the eyes of racist voters”

Fraser Nelson, editor of the spectator, has said: The Palace was wrong to ban Griffin. He’s an odious racist, but won his seat fair and square. He’s a hideous reminder of abandoned voters.

As a leftie anti-fascist which view do I think is the more responsible? The latter of course.

Banning him is another way in which the battle to beat the fascists has been delegated to simply trying to forget they are there – ignoring the cause of their rise as if it weren’t important.

Though Andrew Brons, also a BNP MEP, has kept his invitation – I dare say if his profile was bigger it’d be his fate too.

These are terrible characters, but trying to hide them will not work – unless only as a way of getting out of taking the BNP on properly and curbing their appeal.

Don’t vote for the BNP

According to a recent Guardian/ICM poll around 1% of the electorate are planning to vote for the British National Party on the May 6th 2010, which to say I think is a bad decision, is an understatement of epic proportions. Though not all of those people are going to be racists with criminal pasts, unlike many of the high ranking members of that party – which would suggest that much of this vote will be a product of disaffection with the existing system, the feeling of being ignored by the three main parties, or that the BNP vote grows in areas that have declining industries.

Take Barking and Dagenham, a place that since 1931 has been home to the Ford Motor Company. Since the 1980s there has been a decline in jobs from the large manufacturing industry and a growth in service industry jobs and smaller manufacturing units, that has attracted low-skill jobs from native and immigrant workers, to add to the existing workforce, much of which is composed of families of immigrants from the second world war period.

In spite of the fact that the white British and white other population make up around 80% in B&D, with Indian being the next ethnic category – of around 2.8% based on calculations made in 2005, and, from my own guesstimation, based on other immigration trends, that particular ethnicity would only have gone up according to offspring in the last five years, therefore not by a great deal – worry that a “flooding” has taken place is not uncommon, spoken even by well-meaning, and unracist, groups of people.

Though if I can dispel these myths, what is wrong with housing in B&D is not immigration, but rather speed. A regeneration has taken place in Barking since 2007 called the Regeneration and Renewal project in response to, among other things, growing unrest about council housing lists. It promises to deliver more housing and create more jobs.

This move can also be seen as a response both to the decline in industries such as Ford, and the premature undercutting of the manufacturing sector, most notably organised by Margaret Thatcher in a bid to cripple workers’ unions and be a service and financial sector power in Europe, as is the main task in the post-industrial West.

Thatcher was heavily influenced by Empire Prime Ministers and aspired to the dominance and posterity that they had; though the sun had set on the Empire, so Thatcher sought her dominance and posterity in market power and the rise of the so-called McJob – which, ironically, necessitated low-skilled immigrant work, in a time when Thatcher’s own government were waxing lyrical about the “rivers of blood” – sacrificing large areas dependent on the industry services. Of course, it would be one thing to move the economy on with the times, but what Thatcher created was a mass dependency on welfare for well abled workers by not having a post-industrial plan of any description (left-wingers defecting to the liberal democrats this election will do well to remember that Nick Clegg praised Thatcher’s legacy recently – and unless Clegg had a moment of madness before saying it, puts him in a way more whackier stead than his fellow Orange Book comrades).

The BNP’s, and Nick Griffin’s – their leader – promise to make B&D unattractive to foreigners really highlights their political immaturity. During his campaign for a parliamentary seat we can expect more lies about foreigner queue jumping for housing – but for those who are convinced by such statements should stop and ask why! Why would anyone feel the need to allow migrating families to jump the housing queue, it simply doesn’t make sense to do that (on this subject the BNP have had their fingers burnt before; who remembers the lie, contained in a notorious BNP leaflet called ‘Africans for Essex’, where they reported that the Government had paid African immigrants up to £50,000 to move to Barking to ensure ‘safe Labour majorities in the future’ – which is curiously the same amount the BNP plan to pay non-white people to go back to the ‘land of their ancestors‘ – when in fact the cash incentive was offered to everyone, not just immigrants, to buy houses and free up the council housing lists).

Britain faces many problems, some of which have yet to be realised yet before we’ve reached that worrying period of austerity and cutbacks, but the British National Party are not the solution, they are the problem, and are demonstrably too politically immature to understand the state of the problems in this country, let alone be trusted to solve them.

Do this country a favour, don’t vote for the BNP.

Other reasons for not voting the BNP, from other wesbites, are:

Update: why do “proud nationalist” trolls always choose to hide under a disguise – as can be seen by the comments below. But “ders” has been commented on before by other blogs if I recall (I won’t repeat the email address that this person left, but it won’t be hard to work out by these pictures below of proof that this person has made a name for themselves before on the subject of the BNP)

the site that this very popular blog links to is this one – and the comment that this person makes about “ders” can be seen below

The only Sadie in the BNP I can recall is Sadie Graham (actually no longer a member, was allegedly kicked out when her then fiancee Matt Single was kicked out)

Brentwood newspaper cozies up to BNP

Last year I was horrified to see on my local newspaper website an advert by the BNP. This year things are a little more serious for one Essex newspaper.

Martin McNeill, the editorial director for Newsquest, who own Basildon Echo among others, on which website the advert appeared, made the excuse to Jon Slattery that:

We are accepting paid-for advertising from any political parties or candidates standing in the current elections. I appreciate how strongly many people feel about the BNP, but it would be undemocratic and against the principle of free speech to refuse to accept any party’s advertising provided it falls within our guidelines.

It might explain this Essex newspaper having its hands tied – though I think the excuse is rather a lame kop-out. But this article in Brentwood will not be able to carry the same excuse off.

It reads:

“The party operates under a veil of secrecy to protect members from those who oppose their beliefs and did not reveal the location of the meeting until just minutes before it was due to start. With the pub set to become a regular meeting place for the new group, they have asked us not to reveal where it is.

“Christine Mitchell, a 68-year-old grandmother from Chelmsford, will be running the branch from here on in. Mrs Mitchell, who is contesting the newly created Saffron Walden seat in the general election on May 6, said: ‘We are fighting for British jobs for British workers, that is the start but we are standing for other reasons – crime rates, the state of the education system and the fact MPs have stolen from the public.’

The former Conservative leader of Westminster Council, Peter Strudwick, spoke for more than an hour during the meeting, rallying support for what he called “ideologies” for the future…

“Searching faces scoured the room until a man who had until then sat quietly in the corner, put his hand up to pledge £100. Others then thrust crisp £50 notes in the pot before the less well-off handed over their screwed up £10 and £20 notes. There was much applause and hand shaking as the money came flooding in, uniting the room in the campaign to bring about radical change.”

The last line is of course the most disturbing; this isn’t just an account of the meeting, it ends in a partisan way, not challenging the notion that the BNP are “radical change” – which of course might be true, but not in any way to be celebrated or uncontested.

As just a brief conclusion, I will point out that this is Essex is part of the Essex Chronicle, which in turn is owned by the Daily Mail and General Trust, which of course owns the Daily Mail. Not that that means anything of course.

(H/T left foot forward)

The BNP and US Eco-Fascists

The surprising thing for me that the British National Party’s website is linked to the website of an American party called the Libertarian Nationalist Socialist Green Party – which is described as having ‘the National Socialist German Workers Party as its primary ideological inspiration, while also incorporating elements of Libertarianism and the Green movement’, aims for environmental improvement, and is influenced by things as varied as racial supremacy, anarchism and European Pagan movements – is not that the LNSGP are avowedly Nazi (their logo depicts a swastika on a green background to symbolise its so-called Eco-Fascism) which the BNP claim they are not.

What surprises me is that they are linked in spite of the differences of opinion on green policy. I was under the impression that Griffin felt debate on climate change showed the gulf between the “political elite” and “the little people who have to pay the bills” and that “nationalists” could end this so-called gulf.

For the BNP to be linked online to more Nazi’s is no surprise (examples here and here). For them to be linked to a green party (of some description), well there is a surprise.

It would seem the LNSGP are “nationalists” (though I can think of better words for them). Perhaps Griffin is just not pagan enough.

Nick Griffin not alone in QT audience

It has been a week now since the BNP’s Nick Griffin made his disastrous debut on Question Time, and even his own members are calling for him to leave owing to his shit performance, but he was not the only member of the far-right party in that studio who instead of opening his mouth, should have burrowed down a hole, set up home, and veiled himself away from public speaking forever.

The other party cohort who made his BBCQT debut was one John Clarke.

John Clarke

You may remember that his question was cut short, due to his lack of conviction, allowing another more eloquent member of the audience to wax lyrical about how difficult it can be for asylum seekers to integrate and find work in this country, though many manage to do it against all odds.

I remember thinking, oh what a wally this guy is, hasn’t even the bollocks to carry out his cut and paste facts, at a time when, scarily, the BNP could’ve made a significant name for themselves. Imagine my surprise when, by chance, I realise he is a fairly high ranking member of the BNP. His profile on the BNP website reads:

John is 41 years of age, currently single and has lived in London all his life, mainly in the Croydon area.

He attended Croydon College where he obtained City and Guilds qualifications in mechanical engineering and is now working as a mechanical engineer, setting and operating CNC machines (computer numerical control).

John has many interests and hobbies including reading, music, chess and watching cricket. As a younger man John enjoyed boxing, Kung Fu, football and cricket.

Imagine my further amusement when I find out the controversy that surrounds his homeplace as ‘mainly in the Croydon area’. Many BNP members have criminal backgrounds, but not so many as trivial as Clarke’s. The Standard ran a piece that tells us of Clarke’s amusing home story:

Mr Clarke sought election as a BNP candidate in Merton in 2006 but used a false address on his nomination papers to get round the rule that council candidates must live or work in the borough. As his current biography on the BNP website confirms, he actually lives in Croydon.

After the Standard exposed the front address used by Mr Clarke, as well as another BNP candidate and the BNP supporter who actually lived there, Merton council called the police. Asked why the BNP was claiming three men and their families lived in the twobedroom maisonette, a party spokesman said: “People live in all sorts of ways these days.”

The photo attached to the Standard article was this one (Clarke stands third from the left):

06a_15_BNP-line_415x275Here he is with the rest of the BNP’s candidates for London Assembly (including, most prominently in that familiar suit, Richard Barnbrook, who is still on his ban from City Hall for making up a murder story as backup for the nonsense he peddles for the BNP in Barking and Dagenham), shortly before standing for the BNP in the 2009 European Elections for London.

Today is of course Thursday, meaning another episode of Question Time will be showing tonight, which also means that we will no longer be able to watch last Thursday’s episode again on iplayer, but just as a memento for remembrance, here are the stills that show Mr John Clarke in those moments he’ll probably wish never happened, timelining the moment he asked the question, to the point where he quite literally died on his arse:

John Clarke 2Happy as Larry here

John Clarke 3

Mid-sentence, dreaming he was anywhere else but asking a stupid question, on the set of Question Time

John Clarke 4

Seeming to either say ‘fuck’, or vomiting in his mouth (at this point, the crowd were shouting, laughing, booing, quiping, skitting etc)

John Clarke 5

Melancholy and despair, the realisation that all who know him, all the BNP London Assembly members hoping for a ray of hope from their man in White City, are now cursing him, raising their eyebrows, sticking pins in dolls or vomiting blood over cut outs of his image.

And we laughed…

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