Brendan O’Neill is a knob

Brendan O’Neill is a knob.  A professional troll, his ‘edgy’ contrarian views are no more than Kevin the Teenager style outbursts at what he has decided in his little mind represents the British left.

Most Jeremy Clarkson wannabes like O’Neill are reduced to scrawling letters to their local council in green ink complaining about the communist conspiracy at their local swimming baths.  Occasionally they get given a column at the Daily Telegraph where their pub bore invective can be laid out in full view by cynical press barons, dragging them out like freak show performers in the hope of cashing in on that ever elusive click through internet ad revenue.

So we shouldn’t take the opinions of Brenden O’Neill too seriously when he attacks disability and welfare campaigners for caring about the growing number of suicides linked to welfare reform. 

In his latest spittle flecked rant for the Telegraph, O’Neill lectures us that campaigners discussing those suicides with a direct link to benefit cuts is ‘depravity’ and ‘low, apolitical, super-cynical emotional blackmail.’

With escalating pomposity O’Neill refers to the sad case of the family man who ended his life, blaming cuts to his Housing Benefit.  O’Neill tells us that this actually had nothing to do with his benefits being cut but was “the act of someone in a fevered, unstable state of mind. “

In fact the Coroner in the above case said quite the opposite, but then what does she know – unlike O’Neill, she’s got a proper job.  But O’Neill is correct that this was clearly a very desperate man.  And here lies a hole in his argument so wide the entire Top Gear team could drive through it.

If an obviously suicidal man was pushed into such drastic action by having a ‘fevered, unstable state of mind.‘ then what was he doing on Job Seekers Allowance in the first place?  Is this what ‘fit for work’ means to these scum?

The same applies to the man who set himself on fire outside a Jobcentre in Birmingham recently.  Right wing zealots like O’Neill can’t have it both ways.  If these tragic cases represent people with ‘serious mental-health issues’, as he alleges, then they should have been on the benefit for those with ‘serious mental health issues’, which is Employment Support Allowance, not the dole.

That they weren’t goes to the very heart at the brutal and inhumane flaws of this Government’s welfare reforms.  Both men appear to have been dumped on Job Seekers Allowance, the benefit for those unemployed, not unwell.  It has been suggested that the man in Birmingham was recently stripped of sickness benefits and found ‘fit for work’, a direct result of the DWP’s current hounding of sickness benefit claimants.

So whether these events were linked to benefit cuts or mental health (or even both), the safety net of the welfare state has failed both men.  And either way O’Neill is wrong.

O’Neill singles out Calum’s List for particular invective, a website which has chronicled the tragic losses of life that have been linked to the welfare cuts. In his deluded little world he has decided that this is all a conspiracy by the Guardian in an attempt to ‘approach working-class and less well-off communities through the politics of pity’.

Calum’s List have responded:“Calum’s List is written by the disabled, and by people who are bereft and Brendan O’Neill is too unprofessional or ignorant to approach the subscribers of this website for a point of view, or balance, and instead opts to stick his bully boy boot into a group of disabled people, widows, widowers, bereaved parents and orphans trying to find a voice for their anguish in the absence of mainstream media and all but a few politicians taking any interest in what is a subject that does concern most decent right minded people.”

It may surprise O’Neill to know that benefit claimants actually care about benefit cuts.  As do many of the working poor and the growing army of temporary and part time workers, most of whom rely on benefits some or all of the time.  In truth the Guardian have been dragged kicking and screaming into highlighting the very real human suffering which is taking place as a result of welfare reforms.  It has been sick, disabled and unemployed people along with parents, the low waged, casual workers and pensioners, who have been raising their collective voices.  And despite the tidal wave of abuse directed at claimants from all sections of the mainstream political establishment, they are starting to be heard.

As millions of people are pushed deeper into poverty by welfare reform – and it’s only barely begun – slowly but surely public opinion is changing as suddenly people realise it’s their mum, their brother, their friend, or even themselves that is being plunged into economic despair.

Brendan O’Neill is a political oddball who knows nothing of the people he claims to represent.   He edits the crank website ‘spiked’ which is little more than a mouthpiece for former members of the misnamed Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP). This strange 80s left wing sect managed to find themselves on the right and now preach extreme libertarian capitalism as the solutions to the problems created by inequality and class.  Only more capitalism can save us from capitalism.

Insulated as Brendan O’Neill is in his cosy world of pseudo-intellectual cultists and libertarian fantasisers, he has managed to convince himself that the views of him and his cult are shared by us normals.   It’s true they have loud voices and in some cases deep pockets.  But few are listening anymore to their cheers for the bankers and businessmen.

O’Neill’s faux outrage at the bereaved and disabled who are attempting to tell their own stories of the consequences of this Government’s actions is best ignored.  It is telling however that it is the supporters of these reforms that are really reduced to using emotive slurs to stop people telling the truth about what’s really taking place because of social security cuts.

According to O’Neill, tales of homelessness, poverty, suicide and ill health should be hushed up.  To even mention them means we’ve lost the argument.  And yet it is him evoking the ghosts of desperate events to mount a political attack on the people left coping with these Government created tragedies.  A more super-cynical attempt at emotional blackmail would be hard to find.

UPDATE 6/4/13 part 2: Brendan O’Neill Is Still A Knob

Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid

67 responses to “Brendan O’Neill is a knob

  1. Reblogged this on Diary of an SAH Stroke Survivor and commented:
    Well Worth A Read

  2. Pingback: ‘Brendan O’Neill is a Knob’ ~ by Johnny Void | Black Triangle Campaign

  3. So nice to hear the slimey lil troll ripped apart🙂

  4. As ever, very well said.

  5. Arbeitsscheu_UK

    An individual who fantasises over Anders Breivik during masturbation

  6. Would you believe that Spiked are the rump of of the Trotskist RCP Revolutionary Communist Party. They can usually be found defending freedom of speech for fascists.

  7. Read your articles before – another sparkling and accurate insight. Thanks, I was fuming when I read O’Neill’s toxic article!

  8. These fuckers, like him, WILL fucking care when the revolution in this country kicks off. It is one small step from a man being prepared to set himself alight, to being prepared to detonate a suicide bomb. Oppress a people ENOUGH and they WILL find a way to strike back. Mark my words, the riots of last summer were just the beginning. Civil war is coming to the UK.

  9. Brendan O’Neill is a complete and utter cunt. I’d like to see disease, destitution and death visit this odious little right-wing turd.

  10. Having been pointed towards O’Neill’s article in the Telegraph by my Partner who was seemingly spitting razor blades I’ve been interested to see what other web contributors have been saying about this guy. And do you know – people are right – he really is a dick!

    I’ve yet to hear an intelligent cohesive piece of commentary that doesn’t ascribe to this guy the social mores and compassion rating of a Siberian labour-camp commander. He writes well, but so do some graffiti artists in public toilets – and personally I feel that the lack of any real expressed sentiments or humanity by him for those in need places him very much in the same collective.

    How anyone could possibly imply by thought, narrative or otherwise that people attempting suicide out of desperation were enacting some sort of political fakiry is truly nauseating. I’ve become used to hearing such toilet sensibilities vomiting forth from the foaming mouths of some of America’s more putrid far-right commentators but I’ve not yet come across a seemingly literate one. That O’Neill is a clearly educated man puts the probity of his political positioning all that much more in need of scrutiny. He hasn’t got the excuse of sounding off like a Fox-News rabid ‘righter’ – all God, ‘Commies and ‘Queers. He is accountable if he writes in the Telegraph. Unless of course that organ of note would like to change that position?

  11. Arbeitsscheu_UK

    A knob? I thought he was a douchebag!

  12. Pingback: See No Evil, Hear No Evil – Talk Bollocks | DaveD's Blog

  13. The Drug Sniffing Dog

    Gower Street Hiv Week, the best bit of toilet grafitti I ever saw was:-

    How happy is the moron,
    He doesn’t give a damn,
    I wish I were a moron,
    My god, perhaps I am!

    Art imitating life methinks.

  14. Lol love it ty for the share

  15. Mikey civil war will not ever happen because unfortunately everyone in this country are too apathetic to do anything at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Up against the wall,motherfucker !

  17. …and on it goes. The media give yet more air time to these cunts and their poison. More crap to fuel the nightmares of these John Galt types that want to live in a ‘just world’.
    These cunts, turds like this Brendan character, have no care of the damage they do. Their writing is the equivalent of a maniac running into a school wielding a gun. They poison people becfause they and their editors know that their heightened shrieking will be believed and will cement an agenda shared by the paper.
    We need a fucking revolution. I’m sick of having to be silent. I’m sick of having to feel guilty and frightened because I do not share the toxic prevailing wisdom. I’m sick and tired of trying to chip away at the calcified effect of the effect of decades of anti-scrounger rhetoric; the same tired ‘we must reform welfare’ or ‘we must cut benefits to save their souls’.
    Fuck you Brendan O Neill, fuck you for you are an utter shameless cunt. Go live for a year on JSA, live with the stigma, the insecurity and the total lack of support on top of everything else that’s going on.

  18. Name any country in the world that spends more on welfare for the workless and ‘incapacitated’. Name one country that has more people who claim a disability related benefit. Relative to other countries, we are extremely generous.

    If the cuts=suicide thesis really were true then the German welfare cuts of a few years ago should have resulted in mass suicides. It did not.

    If lack of welfare=suicide thesis were right then in Europoe, where welfare provision for the disabled is far less, suicide rates should be higher.

    • @Epoguy Obviously you missed the recent Hartz IV debate in the German Parliament about suicides?

      • Hartz IV came into effect in 2005.

        Here’s the Eurobaraometer data for you on suicides per 100,000 in Germany:
        2002 – 11.7
        2005 – 10.4
        2008 – 9.4
        Hardly convincing evidence, I’d say. The truth is, welfare cuts are not a driver of suicide.

        • Arbeitsscheu_UK

          So the people in the UK who left suicide notes saying that benefits cuts and persecution were their reasons should in fact have studied German data and they would have realised that they were wrong. Is that what you are saying?

          • Eric Greenwood

            Germany is not the UK.. We have had so many years of both governments using the blame game, We has atos pushing those in real need to the edge of poverty and over.. Who set this up? Years and years of governments hating the sick and unemployed. Perhaps Epoguy, you like seeing the sick killing themselves.. Even 1 person killing themselves over the actions of this and previous governments is 1 person too many. How many sick and disabled people have vanished,, had “accidents” that benefits their family for insurance. We have useless worthless work programmes that according to the dwp own figures, doesnt work, in fact it has a negative effect.. A4e will have more people sanctioned than they got jobs for. How many of those sanctioned are sick and disabled and find it hard to get to the place.. How many have signed off and vanished..

            But perhaps you like the idea of people starving to death epoguy

        • Nice straw man argument.

          But the truth is that having your benefit stopped or interfered with by an increasingly callous state overseen by a government with a clear ideological anti-benefits agenda is.

    • Just do one, Epoguy, you cockwombling Tory Boy cuntmuppet.

    • Relative to other European countries our rates of benefits are actually in the bottom of the table. You have had your brain bleached.
      The majority of welfare spending is Pensions at 42% costing £77 billion.
      Jobseekers Allowance is 3% at £5 billion out of a total of £188 billion of total welfare spending. This is after the economic crisis hit and more people became unemployed through no fault of their own.

      In Germany, newly unemployed receive two thirds of their wage prior to unemployment. In the UK it is £71 from this April – that’s after the 5.1% uplift for inflation rate as of September 2011. For under 25’s it is £56.25.

      Here is a nice simple pie chart to explain it for you in pretty colours so you can understand it.

      http://www.leftfootforward.org/2012/03/budget-2012-breaking-down-the-benefits-bill/

    • Epoguy | July 5, 2012 at 10:00 am | Reply

      “Name any country in the world that spends more on welfare for the workless “.
      ……………………………….

      How about:

      Luxembourg €32,604 – €21,346
      Denmark €32,564 – €18,302
      Netherlands €32,363 – €15,758
      France €32,540 – €15,605
      Portugal €32,288 – €14,323
      Belgium €32,636 – €12,415
      Finland €32,577 – €12,339
      Austria €32,499 – €12,212
      Sweden €32,643 – €11,924
      Germany €32,631 – €11,821
      Italy €32,529 – €11,179
      Spain €32,625 – €10,522
      Ireland €32,747 – €9,662
      Greece €32,731 – €4,407
      UK €32,381 – €3,631

      Note: 1.00 EUR = 0.825498 GBP

      http://www.consent.me.uk/calculator/

      • Forgot to say:
        The first figure in the column represents the average wage . The second is the amount of unemployment benefit for a single person.

        figures as of 2007 but the disparity remains the same.

      • JSA is a Fucking Piss-Take

        Yeah, JSA in the UK is set at a miserly bottom-of-the-league €3,631. Even our Irish cousins can manage €9,962 whereas The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg pays out a generous €21,346. JSA is slave-state UKPlc is a fucking piss-take!

        • JSA is a Fucking Piss-Take

          Imagine that – €410.50 JSA a week, sure beats €71!

        • JSA is a Piss-Take

          Isn’t it funny how the average wage in Luxembourg is only slightly higher than in Slave State UK Plc yet the JSA level is almost 6 TIMES higher. Put that in your knob and smoke it Cameron you cunt! And we are expected to work for it to boot – get to fuck Cameron you cunt!

    • Epoguy
      What you fail or refuse to understand is that statistics are a blunt and maleable tool and used along with the tool of logic can result in inaccurate and damaging conclusions when applied to people. The way you use these statistics does not reveal the truth of what is actually happening to thousands of people, individuals here. Yes, people. It could happen to you, yes you, unless you have stacks of cash squirrled away.
      You fail to engage with individual’s experiences. You fail to face the pain. You fail to believe the lived misery, the deaths and you also fail to research this in an objective way- your research is full of holes. Why do you not consider the BMA’s recent vote to scrap the WCA with immediate effect?
      Interesting how you choose to ignore the professionals who actually deal with distraught people who have had fraudulent WCAs. Do you know what someone without empathy is classified as by psychiatrists? A psychopath.
      Think on this you lightweight.

  19. Brendan O-Neill is a Cunt

    Fuck this Nazi piece of shit!

  20. Arbeitsscheu_UK

    @Epoguy stick to writing in German you cockmongler your English doesn’t make sense.

  21. Arbeitsscheu:
    Play the ball, not the man.

  22. The reason the U.K. ‘spends so much on welfare’ in my opinion is successive government’s have failed to train and upskill the workforce- particularly the unskilled, poor Manuel workers- if instead of just paying JSA the claimant was offered training to become an electrician,plumber etc or go into further or higher education and still be able to keep their benefits- hardly anyone would want to sit at home- yes i know it would be expensive in the short term, but in the long term it would be cost effective- higher skilled workforce- maybe paid back over working life of the worker- similar way to student loans= this country is mad- rather pay companies to participate in workfare schemes – force people into low wage jobs- which are then subsidised by benefits (tax credits, housing benefit) – than make it easy and affordable to upskill- e.g open university had to raise it prices for part time courses (student loans) from approx £750-£2500- if that is not going to disincentivize people- it seems to me the uk tries to keep people poor

    • The bottom line is that at least half the welfare bill goes to the pensioners.

      But the government knows it’d be suciide to stigmatise them.

      • This is what is so peculiar, so much effort is being put into persecuting jobseekers and the disabled. If all the jobseekers and the disabled were to be wiped-out today it would have a negligible effect on the “welfare bill”; chicken feed compared to what is being funnelled into private hands via the “work programme, or a really minuscule compared to the billions upon billions being created through “quantitative easing” not to mention the “banker bail-outs”. All this while pensioners are apparently protected, their non-means tested “winter-fuel” allowances, free bus passes, not to mention the associated health costs etc.. So jobseekers and the disabled continue to be persecuted whilst pensioners sun themselves in Benidorm. What is going on here. From a Nazi perspective if you really wanted to make a dent in the welfare bill the “solution” would be to “exterminate” the pensioner population. The way things are going the current jobseekers and disabled are very unlikely to ever become pensioners. Are they ever going to “come” for the pensioners? What is really going on here?

        • In fact of all the jobseekers and disabled were excised from the welfare bill, these pimps running the Work Programme, and the like, would shit themselves. Without the unemployed (whom they treat like shit) these vampires would be forced into the sunshine.

  23. Greetings folks! I’m writing this while sat in a ‘job club’ run on behalf of A4e – WHAT A SHAMBLES! – The ‘trainer’ has left us alone and unsupervised in the computer room, but there are several people here with minimal computer skills. I’m helping them (doing somone elses job!), the trainer is on a mission with another claiment whom they have roped in to provide (free) translater services! Its a joke. Some folks here need dedicated help with computer skills and CV development but there is no help for them (except from fellow claiments like myself). I’m at Lewisham, being punished with a two day placement for having the nerve for being unemployed for a month! I have a degree and do not need help with CV or interview techniques. Update: The guy who provided the free translation service has negotiated a pay settlement of icecream for our group! Shocker – claiments working for ice cream.

    • Eric Greenwood

      Been there done that, I taught a class of 8 people how to go from not knowing how to turn on a computer to typing all because the computer tutor in the place.. couldnt be bothered..They showed the false carrot we could fund a pttls course in it.. of course they didnt..

  24. Turns out were not getting icecream!
    I have spent last hour assisting fellow claiments in the basics of internet searches etc. I love helping people BUT A4e are being paid millions to provide a rubbish service. Its a waste of everyones time and resources. Please come and picket this place tomorrow!

  25. This is an absolutely fantastic piece. I am so fed up of B o N’s snide dismissal of anyone standing up for anything, ever, on some tenuous grounds, because he thinks it make him seem interesting and intellectual. It is a classic way of trying to silence anyone standing up for themselves and good on you for writing such a sensible, calm and powerful rebuttal.

    I especially love the quote from Calum’s List.

  26. Reblogged this on Pondering Policy and commented:
    Well worth a read. An excellent post with some important points.

  27. Johhny,
    I wonder how this court case(below) relates to the situation re atos. The similarities re the govt continuation with the WCA despite warnings from all over and now doctors plus the psychological stress of having to meet impossible targets, seem to me to be so similar

    This guy is accused in France of bringing about the suicides of 30 workers at France Telecom on a charge of harrassement.
    He is accused of advocating management practices so tough they amounted to psychological harassment. People left notes saying that is why they committed suicide. They were given impossible performance targets.
    An outcry in France at the deaths led to him stepping down as CEO in 2010.
    It is said he had ignored warnings from doctors about the mental health of certain employees. The case was brought by trade unions. If found liable he faces prison.

    It is interesting that the CEO of atos, Thierry Breton was also CEO of France Telecom before this and is a lifetime honorary director of the company.

    If the French are outraged at the deaths of 30 employees and it is enough to bring a court case, how much more so when the same is being inflicted here on even more people than this by their own government?

    What do you think?

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2169260/Former-France-Telecom-chief-faces-probe-wave-suicides-company.html#ixzz1zrNVThYg

  28. “The exploitation of people who clearly have serious mental-health issues is shocking” – Brendan O’Neill. Yeah, you said it buddy.

  29. Agree, Brendan O’Neill is a complete cunt. And that’s being polite.

  30. Did you hear Brendan O’Neill is a paedophile!!!! I knew it when I first saw his weird face. You can just tell. Why not do a post about it?

  31. Pingback: Brendan O’Neill Is Still A Knob | the void

  32. Pingback: COMRADE Brendan O’Neill Is Still A KNOBEND | Black Triangle Campaign

  33. Nine weeks ago, my brother who had disabling back pain for eighteen months, and was sleeping in a chair because he couldn’t lay down, was told he was fit for work after a WCA by bloody Atos.
    Eight weeks ago he was diagnosed with end stage cancer, one week after being found “fit for work”.
    He died on the 8th April after enduring pain likened to “walking on two broken legs”.
    He was 55 years old, so much for the WCA, Atos and the bastard tory scum.
    ps; When my Sister-in-Law phoned the DWP to inform them of his death, two days later and to stop DLA, their only comment was, “Have you been to the Job Center to sign on”??????? Bunch of fucking robots.

  34. Pingback: Stephanie Bottrill Blamed The Government For Her Suicide And So Should The Rest Of Us | the void

  35. Pingback: Stephanie Bottrill Blamed The Government For Her Suicide And So Should The Rest Of Us

  36. Brendan O’Neill is too unprofessional or ignorant to approach the subscribers of this website for a point of view, or balance, and instead opts to stick his bully boy boot into a group of disabled people, widows, widowers, bereaved parents, and orphans trying to find a voice for their anguish.
    Absolutely agreed. May I ask: would it be terribly nasty of me to wish that O’Neill find himself in the same position as those he vilifies right before they realised that death was preferable to the unequal struggle they were suffering, or should I just curse him with empathy and insight instead?

  37. Pingback: Stephanie Bottrill Blamed The Government For Her Suicide And So Should The Rest Of Us | Street Democracy - where it should reach

  38. Pingback: Another Tragic Atos Death: RIP Jacqueline Harris | the void

  39. Reblogged this on Beastrabban’s Weblog and commented:
    I’ve decided to reblog this piece on Brendan O’Neill’s glib dismissal of suicides caused by benefit cuts as it illustrates the point The Void makes in the article on the suicide by a disabled Bristol lady. The Void sites his comments as showing that to the Right, only the middle class and rich properly feel things. Indeed, in my comments to that article, I pointed to Peter Hitchen’s comments in his Mail on Sunday column. Hitchens believes that prison is too soft due to campaigns against its conditions by members of the middle classes, who were imprisoned and were appalled by the experience. Hitchens states that this is wrong, because prison was not meant for them, but for the working class, who can cope better with such poor conditions and so need a tough deterrent. This presumably explains the deaths that occur in prison every year through suicide. But O’Neill’s comments also indicate something else: just how vile and right-wing much of the Telegraph is. In fact the Telegraph used to be so true-blue Tory that Private Eye called it ‘the Torygraph’. Some of its opinions are every bit as bigoted and nasty as the Daily Mail, yet while the Daily Mail is rightly criticised for its venomous opinions, the same are not denounced when expressed in the Telegraph. The wording in the articles may be milder, and the articles at least ostensibly more balanced, but I also wonder if part of the problem simply isn’t one of class. The Daily Mail is aimed at the lower middle class, while the Torygraph is on a much more elevated social level. It’s therefore easier to resent and attack the Daily Mail for its narrow-minded views, while ignoring the fact that the Torygraph has pretty much the same opinions, because it is couched in milder prose and read by middle class opinion-shapers. Well, stupid, bigoted, poisonous nonsense should be attacked wherever it occurs, and it should make no difference whether the rag spouting rubbish is read by the proles and tradesmen, or white collar financial whizzkids. Perhaps it is more pernicious when it is aimed at the financial elite. They, after all, will press for and organise these policies acceptance long before it is presented to the proles for their automatic adulation.

  40. Pingback: Brendan O'Neill is a knob | Welfare, Disability...

  41. Pingback: Brendan O'Neill is a knob | welfare benefits | ...

  42. I hope that knob gets hit with the world’s biggest blowjob by that one with no teeth that could suck a golfball through the length of a garden hose till his ears pop and his balls (if he has any) drop because he’s just a skinny-dick kind a guy who deserves a swift thwack round the ear with a wet mackerel. Fuck him and all who sail on him – the blubberbastic bastard:) X

  43. OH god another brainless tosser emerging from the government dung heap, just wonder which stone this reptile normally hides under. A good kicking normally sorts out these loudmouth ignorant slobs, make sure he knows he a empty shit bag……smelly and reprehensible.

  44. Just found this page.

    So this is where all the gibbering slime balls go when they’ve run out of lavatory walls to write on.

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