Monthly Archives: December 2007

Let Them Eat Soap

Homeless charity St Mungo’s launched their annual attempt to trash Christmas for the homeless by once again urging people not to give to beggars and give money to them instead.

Mungo’s are also urging people to send unwanted Christmas toiletries to them to distribute amongst the unwashed hordes. At least they can drink the aftershave if they get desperate.

In their Christmas newsletter they discuss begging:

“we would rather not tell you what you should or should not do. What we can do is help you make an informed decision. Obviously this is easier said than done when confronted by someone in such desperate need. The pertinent question to ask yourself in this situation is: In desperate need of what?”

They then go on to warn the hard working families and decent folk that the money will be spent on DRUGS! St Mungos don’t like people getting high at Christmas, unless it’s their staff on the piss at one of the many homeless industry parties that happen over the festive season (clients are not invited, homeless people aren’t allowed booze either).

Much like Thamesreach, another charity who are campaigning to raise the price of Special Brew, Mungo’s think that life should be made as hard as possible for folk on the street. This Leninist thinking assumes that people are on the street out of choice … they can’t quite believe that anyone would be forced to sleep rough, not with all the counsellors, support workers and employment training schemes they offer.

The shortage of hostel beds and council housing, as well as the inherent danger and discomfort of many of the hostels they themselves operate, is a matter that is rarely raised in Mungo’s boardrooms.

Fact is Thamesreach and Mungo’s are so dependent on the state and local councils for funding that they are effectively an arm of government these days. Targets, staff salaries and flashy ad campaigns are way more important than giving homeless people what they need – houses and … wait for it … more money.

It also completely by-passes the minds of the middle management types running these organisations that on a wider level homelessness is an economic problem and one born out of the political system we live under.

Yes folks, capitalism’s the problem, a system that puts profit before life and the needs of the bosses above the needs of the people.

Capitalism depends on a mass labour force, prepared to do shite jobs for peanuts to keep the business owners in their life of luxury. But some people will refuse or be unable to work in a McJob for a minimum wage.

These troublesome individuals won’t or can’t play the game, and they must be punished and placated at the same time.

So they get bribed off with meagre benefit payments, not enough to live on, but enough to stop the mob getting too troublesome. Those out there who whinge about dole scroungers should remember one thing, the benefit system is there to protect the rich not the poor, ‘cos without our giros we’d be coming for yer homes.

But the benefit system is also a trap, forcing people to beg, steal, hustle or cheat for a few extra pounds to make life bearable. That’s when the state gets to come down hard and spend some real tax payer’s cash on prisons, courts, coppers, social workers and fucking stupid and spiteful campaigns like the one mentioned above.

So for all Mungo’s bleeding hearts and tough love until they learn one fundamental truth they will continue to flounder in the dark and make crass pronouncements on how vulnerable people should be helped (controlled).

And that fact is that you cannot reform capitalism and turn it into some fluffy fucking utopia where the needs of all are met. Capitalism depends on exploitation, those who refuse to be exploited will be condemned to have shit lives, at least if the state get their way.

This creates both a warning to the rest and an excuse for authoritarian controls, not to mention a niche industry for charities and increasingly profit driven social enterprises.

So we say give a beggar a quid or two in the New Year or join us on the barricades until we overthrow these bastards, because you won’t find an ethical solution to this problem with the like of St Mungo’s.

and that folks is a rare political rant from the void to usher in the New Year, which we hope is a happy one … for most of you.

Kid’s Army

The 4 year old has an unlikely ally in his quest to get a plastic semi-automatic from Woollies with the news that the Department for Children, Schools and Families are telling teachers that kids should have guns.

New guidance being sent out to schools claims:

“Sometimes practitioners find the chosen play of boys more difficult to understand and value than that of girls.

“Images and ideas gleaned from the media are common starting points in boys’ play and may involve characters with special powers or weapons.”

Lovin’ the gender stereotyping, apparantly the document also claims that little girls are made of sugar and spice and all things nice.

The Department goes on to say that boys playing with guns is natural and should not be discouraged, although they should be taught that it’s wrong to hurt others, unless of course they are baddies.

Only the most conspiracy minded nutjob would specualte that with the current policy of endless war it might be well worth the state encouraging kids to get a taste for heavy artillery nice and young.

Then it’s onto war games on Playstation when they’re a bit older, followed by a brief stint in National Service fthen onto a free one way trip to which ever godforsaken combat zone the British Army has managed to get mired up in by the time the kids 18.

All very neat.

But that’s just cynical, me, I’m off to get a tin foil hat … the four year old’s getting an RPG.

Squaring up to the New Year

Well, we’re back from a fun and snowy Kristmas in the West Country and things are hotting up already for January.

First up is a demonstration to support four men who were in Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre during a spontaneous protest last November. They’re in Southwark Crown Court on the 7th Jan and a demo has been called outside from 9am. More details on indymedia.

Then on the 12th Jan ‘We Own The Streets’ with a day of action for freedom of assembly.

On the 19th Jan our friends in the North will be holding an Anti-Racist March with the National Climate Camp meeting also taking place in the North, in Leeds on Jan 26/27th.

And finally Class War have called for an anti-police action to disrupt their demo on 23rd Jan with the plan being to ‘occupy a vantage point right next to the greedy rozzers and stick it to ‘em throughout the march’ … which sounds like a giggle.

So shake off the hangovers or just stay drunk ‘cos January’s full.

Tory Toff Takes to the Streets


Well we’ve been dragged back to keyboard one last time to mention that Tory posh boy Grant Shapps (pictured above)is set to spend a night on the streets tomorrow.

In an offensive and crass publicity stunt he claims it will help him to ‘gain a better idea of what life is like for homeless people’.

Yes the chinless cosy tories are fluffying up again for Crimbo. Forgetting that it was Thatcher’s policy of flogging off council houses that let to 133,000 childten living in temporary accommodation Shapps is going to be bedding down near Victoria Station with, what the tories are calling, a ‘real life rough sleeper’.

Here’s hoping that some ‘real life rough sleepers’ bump into the Tory poshboy and give him a real taste of the streets, or even the pavement.

And on that festive note it’s time to get pissed, we’ll be back and sober soon(ish).

RampART – the end.

In a spiteful, seasonal move long-running London social centre RampARTs is finally set to be evicted in the New Year.

“The whole out of the blue eviction threat smacks of a vindictive punitive reaction to the campaign of objection against the proposed demolition of the houses next to the social center. It turns out that the so-called new owners of the houses are in fact a wholly owned subsidiary of the ‘previous owner’, the Rampart Trust Co Ltd that still owns the warehouse which the social center occupies. Even though there is no planning permission in place or applied for in relation to the social centre, they claim that they intend to start demolition in Jan/Feb 2008. Obviously this is impossible and they know it, so their attempt to have us evicted is not really because of any impending work in the new year.”

RampARTs have put out a call for support.

The New Year’s Eve party will still go ahead.

And for all yer other London New Year’s Eve parties go to http://www.accessallareas.org/

and that’s probably it folks ’til after Winterval .. have a good un’

Top 25 Censored Stories of 2008

Project Censored have just released their annual list of censored News Stories so here’s the top five:

#1 No Habeas Corpus for “Any Person”
#2 Bush Moves Toward Martial Law
#3 AFRICOM: US Military Control of Africa’s Resources
#4 Frenzy of Increasingly Destructive Trade Agreements
#5 Human Traffic Builds US Embassy in Iraq

Read the full stories and the rest of the list at http://www.projectcensored.org

Santa Freed!

The man recently released from Guatanamo Bay may have been freed because of his likeness to Father Christmas CIA sources have told the void today.

A top ranking CIA officer told us that George Bush recently carried out a tour of the prison camp and spotted Mr El-Banna’s likeness to Santa immediately. According to Whitehouse officials Bush has been extra good all year and didn’t want to risk incarcerating Santa and not getting any presents.

Santa is said to be George Bush’s third favourite person after Elvis and God. Bush recently re-affirmed his Christian faith telling journalists:

“If it ain’t God’s voice in ma head telling me what to do then whose the hell is it?”

Whilst some suspect that Mr El-Banna is not Santa, Bush wasn’t taking any chances. Our source said:

“Bush was disappointed with his presents last year, he’d been hoping for Bagdhad but only got a bit of it. After not invading Iran and pretending to care about global warming, Bush is making sure that this year he gets the presents he deserves.”

Mr El-Banna may be wanted in Spain for looking Islamic, however US diplomats have urged that extradition not take place until Boxing Day, just to be on the safe side.

The US have warned Mr El-Banna that he may well be re-renditioned if Bush doesn’t get a Wii this Christmas. He’d also like the new Spice Girls single and Tehran.

Mr El-Banna said:

“I would have been happier if everybody in Guantanamo were released and that ugly, bad place was closed down if not demolished.”

Close Guantánamo

not scab, just acab

We’re amused at the government plot to give Community Support Officers a decent pay rise. It must be tough telling off teenagers and hanging around in groups with real coppers looking confused all day.

Best of all it narks off the real criminals, who are currently whinging about not being paid enough for turning class traitor. We’ve never seen much in the way of solidarity to other workers from the old bill, so we don’t feel too inclined to offer any support, even though the prospect of the police on strike is intriguing.

The rises for the CSOs is curious, are the Home Office attempting to ante up the police. Perhaps Brown really is a red after all and has got a bunch of ex-miners and travellers ready to give the pigs a taste of real community justice if they go ahead with their threatened demonstration … and maybe these pigs can fly.

On a side note, if the cops want to demonstrate in the SOCPA zone do they have to ask themselves for permission? I smell a conflict of interest.

Two old bill who have got no reason to be sulking about pay are Ian Johnston and Andy Trotter are Chief Constable and Deputy Chief Constable respectively with the British Transport Police (BTP). Much like the CSOs they ain’t really proper coppers, paid as they are, by the train companies, to catch fare dodgers and harrass buskers.

This doesn’t stop them from being two of the highest paid cops in the country.

The scam works like this. You resign from the Met and pick up a full pension, £70,000 in the case of Johnston. You then come out of retirement and pick up a job with BTP, keeping the pension and picking up a big fat new salary to go with it.

In Johnston case he earns £195,000, taking his annual earnings to over quarter of a million pounds. Trotter is not far behind with a deal worth well over two hundred grand per annum.

Johnston pick up £6,964.40 in expenses in the last year on top of that.

Nice work if you can get it.

acab

Summer Time … and the living is easy.

It’s fucking cold outside and the Christmas mob have taken to the streets in an blur of tinsel and brightly coloured pieces of plastic. But it’s not all bad, the four year old’s getting his Tardis and it’s Solstice Eve which means things can only get better from here on in.

So a here’s timely reminder of the Summer which was sent to us in June and we have shamefully let sit in our inbox all this time … there you go, read Comment is Free if you wanna stay topical.

Hree’s the story of an incident which occured after the Stoke Newington Festival last Summer:

YOU AREN’T SUPPOSED TO GET AWAY WITH STREET PARTIES ANYMORE

A street party spontaneously broke out in North London’s Highbury New Park on 10th June. As crowds left the nearby Stokefest festival in Clissold Park, a truck parked nearby fired up their soundsystem, and after some ineffectual-looking arm-waving from yellow-jacket community cops, it started off down Highbury New Park, with a crowd of party people (between 60-200, according to various reports) bouncing after them, some on bikes. They partied down Highbury New Park, with some punters dancing on top of garden walls. Some punters, wineglasses in hand, appeared to have come out of parties in local back gardens.

Half way down the road, after the truck attempted to turn, punters lay down in front of the truck in the road and demanded “More music!” as the sound system crew pleaded, “We’ve got to be back in Brighton tonight!” A man with a megaphone wearing a tall black top hat with a peacock feather in it, eventually talked the crowd into letting them drive off at speed (without the sound system on) in the Brighton direction after about half an hour or partying.

Street parties like this are the sort of thing we’re not supposed to be allowed to get away with anymore. But it happened.

Home Office Closed!


“On Tuesday 18/12/07. activists from the No Borders Network, marked UN International Migrant’s Day by blockading immigration reporting centres in Glasgow, Bristol, Newcastle and Portsmouth.”

In London activists blockaded the Home Office from 10am yesterday. Many more actions have been held over the last couple of days, check indymedia uk for the full round up.