Category Archives: society

24 Jan

The privileged elite and the freedom of the press

I’m not starry-eyed about the British newspapers. How could I be when I’ve read them and written for them all my working life? If ever I harboured any illusions, these were quickly dispelled back in the late 1980s when I was lucky enough to land myself a proper job in Fleet Street. Sir David English gave me a freelance contract on the Daily Mail to write op-ed pieces, travel articles and book reviews. And it really was Fleet Street in those days: the Daily Mail building was two minutes’ walk from St Bride’s, the wedding cake church so named after its unusual tower. I had a grand old time. I joined Scribes’ journalists’ drinking club and spent hours in The Cheshire Cheese,once a favourite watering-hole of Dr Johnson,  where I talked Old Leeds with Keith Waterhouse and cricket with Ian Wooldridge. I interviewed Daniel Barenboim in Munich and John Arlott in Alderney and I had dinner with Anthony Burgess and his wife in the West End. The first feature I was asked to write was about the Lockerbie disaster.

I learned all – well, at least some – of the tricks of the trade. I saw the glamour and the dark side. There was that scintillated feeling when you got the centre pages spread – though I managed that only once in three years. I saw corners cut and I saw dirty tricks, brilliant inventiveness and quite astonishing stupidity and ignorance. For example, I had to work with a particular editor who was so conscious of her status that, on the occasions she took me out to lunch, she would book a limo to take us a hundred yards round the corner. And here’s what I mean by ignorance. It was my job to suggest topics for stories and one day in 1990, the fiftieth anniversary of Dunkirk, I phoned another editor and said, “I’d like to go to the beaches at Dunkirk and interview British and German veterans of the battle.” The editor replied: “Great idea Pete…” (I hate being called Pete) “…Just refresh my memory – what was Dunkirk?”

Old hacks like me have no illusions when it comes to the world of newspapers. The papers are capable of all manner of skulduggery from phone-tapping to making up stories. But for all its faults – and they are myriad – we need the press. If it hadn’t been for the newspapers’ nagging perseverance, we would have never got the truth about the first Iraq war. And the MPs’ massive expenses fraud would have gone uncovered. And this morning there is news of another initiative that makes me proud to have been involved at close quarters with the national press.  

The UK’s two biggest selling newspapers have threatened legal action unless the reasons for the decision to free sex attacker John Worboys are revealed.

The Sun and the Daily Mail have jointly written to the Parole Board and the Justice Secretary to say that unless the reasons behind the decision to recommend the rapist’s release from prison are published within seven days, the papers’ lawyers will apply for a full judicial review to have that decision overturned.

Their letter says the report is a “matter of profound public interest” and keeping it secret is a breach of open justice.

Black cab driver Worboys was jailed indefinitely in 2009 for drugging and sexually assaulting women passengers. Although convicted of “only” nineteen offences relating to twelve victims, he is suspected to have committed more than a hundred sexual assaults. And now a new allegation of historical sexual assault has been made against the 60-year-old Worboys.

The incident, which was reported to the police earlier this month, is reported to have taken place in 1997. The controversial Parole Board decision to approve his release later this month, following his minimum eight-year term, has led to a moral outcry – with lawyers for his victims describing the move as “extremely distressing.”

And distressing it is. Many would say that to release Worboys ever would be a scandalous breach of natural justice. How could the Parole Board come to the decision that a man proven to be guilty of all those violent crimes should be set free, with the possibility of his re-offending?

I’ll tell you why: because the sorts of people who operate the Parole Board – like the sorts of people who get appointed to the Supreme Court or those members of the House of Lords who, only a fortnight ago, voted further to restrict press freedom – are not as other men. They don’t think and act as we think and act. They are a privileged elite and they consider themselves to be in possession of finer moral sentiments than we ordinary mortals.

Shockingly, you and I can do nothing to oblige these tribunes of the people who are really the enemies of the people to come to their senses and change their minds and their policies.

But the newspapers can. And that’s why newspapers – warts and all – should be celebrated. Let’s hear it then for that secular sacrament, the freedom of the press.  

05 Jan

It’s not the economy, stupid!

The heart is always gladdened when someone in authority makes a definite and determined statement. So congratulations are in order for Sadiq Khan, mayor of London, who stated in his election manifesto of 2016:

“I shall challenge gang culture and knife crime head on.”

Well said, Sir! So how’s he doing at the end of his first year in office?

Homicides in London rose by 27.1%. Youth homicides increased by 70%. Serious youth violence is up 19%. Robbery up 33.4%, while home burglaries rose by 18.7%.

That’s a remarkable increase in serious offences of all sorts. But there’s more…

Thefts increased by over 10,000 incidents in a year, up 33.9%, Alarmingly, there were more than 4000 additional knife crime incidents, a rise of 31.3%.

Rape in the capital rose by 18.3% and there were 2,551 incidents of gun crime, a rise of 16.3% on the previous year.

Meanwhile, we have seen new and ingenious forms of sociopathic behaviour, such as the epidemic of acid attacks.

First the mayoral authorities crack down on the possession of firearms: then incidents of gun crime increase to surpass those in New York.

Secondly, these same authorities “challenge knife crime head on”: then we get those 4000 “additional knife crime incidents.”

Can we expect a ban on sales of Domestos end to the terror of acid attacks?

Mr Khan continuously blames central government’s “police cuts” for this shocking increase. Is he right? There has been a small reduction in the number of police officers but there are still 30,379 of them in the Metropolitan Police. The Met has an annual budget of £2billion and £240million of reserves.

The mayor says it’s all a result of central government’s economic policies as people are impoverished and deprived of adequate social infrastructure by the Tories in Westminster. But London is booming and there are more people in employment than ever.

So instead of subscribing to the prevailing Marxist explanation that increases in criminal behaviour – and just about everything else, actually – are the result of immutable economic forces, let’s try looking somewhere else to find answers. If economic depression leads inexorably to an increase in crime, why is it that – as Christie Davies pointed out in his book The Strange Death of Moral Britain – “Crime persistently decreased in the long economic depression at the end of the 19th century and crime has increased terrifically during the long period of economic expansion since the Second World War. The only people who believe the opposite to be the case are sociologists and left wing politicians.”

Oh, and Mr Khan of course.  

For him and for all those sociologists and lefties, I have a question: “What if virtue and vice, law-abidingness and criminal behaviour are not mere functions of economic forces, as Karl Marx vainly believed, but have actually to do with the individual freedom which makes possible personal and public morality?

13 Dec

Our world of lying truths

Matt Hancock, a government minister, has just felt obliged to declare formally, ”Objective reality exists.” To his credit, he confessed to a certain shamefacedness about this but he added that he believes he had a duty to reassure us.

I find it hard to understand what Mr Hancock’s statement means. By “objective reality” does he mean truth? If so, then the proposition “There is such a thing as truth” is self-evident – a necessary proposition – because if someone attempts to refute it and says, “There is no such thing as truth,” then either that proposition is true or the one who states it is wrong. In either case, there is something that is true.

Actually, Mr Hancock’s laudable and public-spirited aim is to reassure us that in our new world of virtual reality, filled as it is with fake news, Bitcoins,  the dissembling worlds of Facebook and Twitter and computer games of such startling verisimilitude that so called “real life” pales by comparison, there yet remains something real, something we can trust.

I think our problem is not epistemological or metaphysical, but psychological and above all moral and spiritual. In our new electronic phantasmagoria, people have become indifferent to the notions of truth and reality. And this disposition has not been forced upon them: they have chosen it quite willingly. The interest of many is not truth and objective reality but images and sensations, and the rapid advance of technology enables us to create images and sensations of astonishing power.

Any “reality” is as good as any other. You choose! Seems? Nay, ‘tis.

Unfortunately, this world of willed illusion becomes also, by the operation of political correctness, a world of willed delusion. People don’t merely choose what to look at; they choose what to believe. Postmodern philosophers and theologians deny Mr Hancock’s (or God’s) truth and objective reality: they speak approvingly of things being” true for you” or “true for me.” And of course this just means we can’t talk about truth at all. The philosophers and theologians have been guided by the politicians who tell them not to insist that there is such a thing as the objective truth – because to do so might “offend” someone who holds to “a different truth.”

Welcome to the world of “equality” and “diversity.”

We have replaced the gospel of St John with the gospel of Pontius Pilate.

This is not going to end well. If we are no longer concerned to inhabit reality but instead we evaluate any image, any sensation, only insofar as it appeals to us, then we have no escape from a world of ubiquitous delusion. Jesus Christ referred to this activity as blasphemy against the Holy Spirit – which he declared to be the only unforgiveable sin. Unforgiveable because it is impossible to repent of it. If you say, “Lies be my truth” and “Delusion be my reality,” then you have chosen paranoid psychosis, madness – hell.

Allow me a personal recollection, please. In 1988 I began to write a novel about Tom and Lucy. These two young creatures of flesh and blood were increasingly drawn into a world which was all images and appearances. I found it intolerable and had to stop writing the damn thing: first, because some of the things that began to happen to Tom and Lucy were so horrific that they turned my stomach; and secondly, because it all sounded too far-fetched.

Well now, thirty years on, is it still so far-fetched?

If you are seeking a definition of the world we now inhabit, look no further than Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus where Mephistopheles, the Father of Lies, exclaims in terror and despair, “Why, this is hell; nor am I out of it!”

06 Dec

They’re pulling our leg again, aren’t they?

All sing along with me: ‘Tis the season to be hyperbolic…

Last night at a fastidiously pretentious “ceremony” in the Ferens Art Gallery, Hull, the African artist Lubaina Himid was awarded the Turner Prize. What more can be said when the whole damn thing is beyond satire? Compared with Ms Himid’s stuff, the act of throwing a pot of paint in the public’s face represents high cultural achievement. What’s it like then? There’s a fair chance that anything I might write would be a bit on the biased side. so let one of her supporters describe it:   

“Himid’s work has long been concerned with black creativity, history and identity and this animated throng represents the Africans who were brought to Europe as slave servants. There are drummers, dog trainers, dancers, potters, cobblers, gardeners and players of the viola da gamba, all decked out in vivid versions of 17th century costume. Labels on their backs identify each individual, giving both their original African names and occupations as well those imposed by their new European owners, and these poignant texts also form part of an evocative soundtrack, interspersed with snatches of Cuban, Irish, Jewish and African music.”

Much of her output looks like a gaudy collage produced by a mildly psychotic six-year-old with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

But don’t take my word for it. Listen instead to the singer Goldie who appeared at last night’s shindig to praise Ms Himid’s work for “Digging deep and challenging people’s perceptions.” Gliding over the surface and massaging familiar prejudices, more like. Another enthusiastic commentator said that Ms Himid’s agenda is “Black identity and the slave industry” And he reminded us that Ms Himid was awarded the MBE for services to “black women’s art.” All of which sounds rather racist to me and it doesn’t say anything about her art.

She produces some of her work on old copies of The Guardian and includes photographs of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher clipped out from that newspaper. In other words Ms Himid is not about art but about trendy-lefty racial “activism” and, instead of throwing pots of paint in our faces, she is, by her own admission, busy “reclaiming identities.”

Well, it’s trash isn’t it? if works awarded the Turner Prize were not trash, we would all come away disappointed.

Fair enough that it’s trash. But it’s not fair enough that it’s lying trash. Ms Himid claims to be about “correcting false impressions.” Yes, we are all going to have the scales removed from our eyes and see the world as it really is – that is the world portrayed by “the black women’s art movement.”

So why does she peddle palpable untruths? Here’s one: “In the 1980s black people were totally invisible.”

I suppose she means as invisible as Courtney Pine, Sir Bill Morris, Sir Trevor McDonald, Chris Eubank, Cleo Laine, Shirley Bassey, Martin Offiah, Frank Bruno, Ben Okri, Floella Benjamin, Bernie Grant, Diane Abbott, Lenny Henry, Benjamin Zephaniah, Lennox Lewis, Linford Christie, Paul Ince and Ian Wright?

At the time I was living in Bolton – not far from Professor Himid’s hideout at the University of Central Lancashire. I numbered many black people among my friends and acquaintance there  and, so far as I can recall, none of them was invisible.

I must not protest too much and we should be grateful for the crap because it makes us return and repose again in things of quality.

All may be forgiven. Except that the name of the great J.M.W Turner is contaminated with this slime.


06 Nov

Taxation: Institutionalised Theft Disguised as a Virtue

Anything to have a go at the Queen.

Her Majesty is accused of being among those who invest some of their money in countries and institutions where tax rates are lower.

The word used all over the press is precisely that one “accused.” But accusations are only in respect of actions deemed to be wrong. The Queen and others who seek to avoid tax have done nothing wrong: they are merely acting prudently.

Tax evasion is a crime but tax avoidance is not.

Naturally, all lefties, Guardianistas and the BBC endemic are appalled that people should – though it be within the law – decide to pay as little tax as possible. For example Dame Margaret Hodge adorned The Today Programme this morning with her efflorescent platitudes and excoriated all tax-avoiders. She said, “We have a social contract in which we all come together and, according to our means, contribute to the common pot.”

No we don’t. If that is anyone’s idea of how politics and economics works, then it’s bunkum. The whole notion of the social contract from Rousseau to John Rawls is the mythological framework, masquerading as moral rectitude, by which governments  persuade, coerce and bully the people into paying…paying for what? For the government, of course. And for the institutionalised profligacy which spends our money on things we don’t want.

The government doesn’t know best. We know best how to spend our own money.

For example, I’m not at all happy that the government should use my money to provide, free of charge, homosexuals with prophylactic pills which enable them to go forth and fornicate profusely without the danger of catching AIDs

Among the other wastages I resent paying for is the state education system which is so dysfunctional that it should be described as child abuse. What other words are there to describe such a system  which, according to the Education department’s own figures, leaves 43% of our children – after eleven years of full time, compulsory and hideously expensive schooling – unable to read, write and count efficiently?

We have lived a long time under Labour and Conservative governments  based on a lie. This lie is the article of socialist faith which declares that what unreconstructed political reactionaries like me describe as “my money” really belongs to the government to control, disperse or with-hold according to its own whim.

This sort of government – the only sort of government seen in Britain for decades – is not about good management of the nation’s resources: it is about political control.

Taxation is the government’s method by which it seeks – and in which it succeeds spectacularly – to control us.

All socialism is inherently unjust. And it has never worked anywhere. When it is practised moderately, it inhibits the people’s freedom. When it is practised thoroughly, it leads to Stalin and the gulag or presently in Venezuela – so admired by our leader-in-waiting Jeremy Corbyn – people rummaging in dustbins for food.

Down with the Exchequer! God save the Queen!  

05 Nov

If thy ‘ead offend thee, cut it off

The country is terribly short of shrinks.

One in ten consultant psychiatrist posts in England are currently unfilled in the NHS,according to a report by the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCP) and the number of unfilled posts has doubled in the past four years.

Wales is also struggling to fill posts, with vacancies of 9%, while Scotland and Northern Ireland have vacancy rates of 6% and 2% respectively.

The college called the vacancies “frankly alarming”  Prof Wendy Burn of the RCP, said the shortage means patients might be waiting months to see a psychiatrist, during which time they could be getting worse.

Professor Burn did not consider the distinct possibility that sufferers might get worse if they did see a psychiatrist. If you want to be a plumber, it helps if you’re a practical sort. Priests need to be religious. By the same token, many psychiatrists are more than a little mad.

I read the snooker champion Ronnie O’ Sullivan’s account of how, some years ago, he turned to a Freudian psychiatrist to help him overcome his depressions. Ronnie’s father was doing time for murdering Charlie Kray’s driver. The psychiatrist, having noted that Ronnie sometimes cued left-handed, asked him if his father had stabbed his victim with his left hand.  Ronnie’s comment on the psychiatrist’s question was: “It did me ‘ead in.”

There is a century old tradition of Freudian – or, as we say in English, Fraudian – psychiatry. And then between the wars there arose a fashion for Behaviourism. This is a science of the mind which does not think there is such a thing as a mind. So psychiatrists should study our behaviour which is defined exclusively in terms of stimulus and response – the famous S-R relation which the renowned Behaviourist B.F. Skinner (1904-1990) employed to teach rats the way out of mazes and pigeons to play table tennis.

(By the way, the “B.F.” stands for Burrhus Frederic – and not what you were thinking).

On this subject, Arthur Koestler commented: “Now that we have lost our souls, gone out of our minds and seem about to lose all consciousness, what is there left for psychologists to study? Professor Skinner’s answer is ‘Rats!’”

Similarly, the philosopher Peter Geach said, mockingly, “A Behaviourist knows he’s hungry when he observes himself running home for his lunch.” 

From phenobarbitone  – which I once heard mispronounced as “female baritone” – to Prozac, psychiatry has come up with a succession of wonder drugs. We were assured back in the 1960s that the new benzodiazepams such as Librium, Ativan and Valium – “mother’s little helpers” – so you see, it was the women who got to swallow the lion’s share – were without side effects and non-addictive. We now know that millions worldwide have been on these drugs for generations and can’t kick the habit. 

Scientific psychiatry brought forth many blessings. There was electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) – very popular in the 1950s and 1960s – which works by giving patients electric shocks to produce seizures which, it was hoped, might relieve the conditions of depression and mania. The treatment was typically administered to a patient three times a week for several weeks, very commonly to pregnant women and those going through the menopause. 71% of all patients treated with ECT are women. It is still being administered in NHS hospitals. Rosemary, sister to JFK, received this treatment and was incapacitated for the rest of her life. The distinguished New Zealand novelist Janet Frame was among countless others who suffered greatly owing to this procedure.

I suppose the mother and father of all treatments for mental disturbances is the frontal lobe lobotomy, named from two Greek words meaning “brain” and “slice.” The ultimate method, as Ronnie might say, of doin’ yer ‘ead in. Surgeons cut out part of the cortex. Again this is more often performed on women. Its inventor Antonio Muniz was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1949 for coming up with this little beauty. There is a vigorous campaign to have his award annulled.

Jesus famously quipped, “if thy hand offend thee, cut it off. If thine eye offend thee, pluck it out.” – Mark 9:43ff. The lobotomists have gone one better than the Lord: “If thy head offend thee, cut it off.” 

You know, I’m only an uninstructed layman in these matters, but I just wonder if, rather than seek ever more ingenious ways to treat mentally deranged people, it might be better to try to create a saner world? 

06 Oct

Rotherham: The Social Workers’ Mecca

The National Federation of Butchers have been awarded this year’s prize for services to vegetarianism. Praising the butchers, the Chair of the Vegetarian Alliance, Ms Flora Vegan-Nutter, said, “We know that butchers are not usually the strictest vegetarians, but the other day I watched a video of a butcher with two sprouts by the side of his T-bone steak. So the VA wants to build on this encouraging start and that’s why we have awarded the NFB this year’s prize.”

Only kidding.

But if you thought that was fake news, here’s something which unfortunately isn’t. I quote from Rotherham Council’s website:

“Rotherham Council has been shortlisted for the Best Social Work Employer of the Year prize in the acclaimed Social Worker of the Year Awards 2017 as a result of their outstanding work with vulnerable children. The Council has been singled out following its successful social work recruitment drive – which has led to more social workers than ever before wanting to come and work in Rotherham. And we have been told by Ofsted in recent monitoring visits that we are have a positive organisational culture.”

Now isn’t that nice for them?

Rotherham has been in the prize-winning frame before. It is only one among so many towns which might have won the accolade for having the most underage girls raped or otherwise sexually-abused by Muslims: 1400 – and these were only the girls definitely identified. In all probability 1400 is a massive underestimation of the scale of this outrage.

The habitual practice of Rotherham social workers – again as with those in a great many other places – was to turn a blind eye to the rape and sexual abuse of children for fear of giving “offence” to “communities” and for being found guilty of the imaginary crime of “Islamophobia.”

It was the Jay Report, under the chairmanship of Mark Greenburg, which exposed these many violent offences.

Mr Greenburg said the Rotherham Social Work Department was guilty of “Multiple and systemic failures.” And then, in what must be the year’s most unfortunate choice of words, he added, “It was more cock-up than conspiracy.”

Too many cocks up, eh Mr Greenburg?

The Jay Report was not the first investigation into the Rotherham scandal and it was earlier revealed that there have been untold thousands of rapes since the 1980s.

And the result? In all those almost forty years, there have been only twenty convictions.

Moreover, the abuse is still going on.

And that’s not fake news either.

04 Oct

Britain’s Apartheid

At the Conservative conference, Theresa May urged the party to value “our communities.”

Wrong from the start. Doubly wrong coming from someone who claims to be a Conservative. For at the root of conservatism is the notion of all the people as being one community. This was splendidly expressed by Samuel Johnson in his dictionary where he derided Whiggery as “a faction.”

Conservatism had its origins in the Elizabethan Settlement in which church and state were seen as the one realm in two different aspects – with the monarch as head of state and supreme governor of the Church of England. No doubt this is the origin too of the saying that the Church of England is “the Tory party at prayer.” Toryism in the 18th century – Johnson’s Toryism – was concerned above all with strengthening this belief in the oneness of the realm. The people of that time remembered the civil war and rabid sectarianism which tore the country apart in the previous century and they vowed that this must not happen a second time.

So they built on the Elizabethan Settlement a polity which was concerned above all with national unity. In order for this to succeed it must be a unity that did not make extreme demands on the people. Indeed, this had been at the centre of the original Settlement. Nothing too onerous. Yes, people should go to church, but not every week as if they were enthusiasts or fanatics but, according to The Book of Common Prayer, “three times a year of which Easter should be one.”  Only a conformity which did not demand anything excessive could possibly work as the bedrock of peace and stability.

And this is what that other Settlement under the Restoration in 1660 aimed to achieve.

These are things of which we should all be proud because they demonstrated generosity when, with the passing of the Test and Corporation Act of 1828 and the Catholic Emancipation Act of 1829. Protestant Dissenters and Roman Catholics were incorporated as full members of the nation.

This worked remarkably well until the mass immigrations of the 20th century. Those arriving on our shores were not enjoined to adopt our way of life but allowed – even encouraged – to separate off into what the multiculturalists – and now Mars May – refer to as “communities.”

What they actually are, of course, is ghettos. When such separate development  was practised in South Africa, British politicians condemned it as Apartheid. When precisely the same thing happens over here, it is regarded as wholesome “diversity.”

This, Mrs May, is not the route to social cohesion: it is the way back to the murderous sectarianism of the English Civil War.

22 Sep

Spare a thought for the BBC

I sympathise with the writers and performers of W1A, the BBC comedy drama which has just begun its third series. W1A is advertised as a satire on the BBC itself

This is an impossibility, for the BBC is beyond satire. How would you go about satirising a Corporation…

Whose economics and political presenters constantly bash the bankers and other fat cats but then pay some of the trashiest of their own staff hundreds of thousands of pounds?

Whose charter obliges it to “inform and educate” but which bans all discussion – a necessary part of informing and educating – of important subjects such as climate change?

Which is charged to be impartial but which blatantly and relentlessly takes sides on key issues – for example, its editors’ and presenters’ opposition to Brexit? (It was a BBC man himself who, on the morning after the referendum result, said he couldn’t find a single member of staff in Broadcasting House or the Television Centre in favour of Leave).

Which earns £billions from the worldwide commercial sales of its programmes and yet demands a massive annual subsidy through the universal tax misleadingly described as a “licence”?

Which announced the channel BBC Four with the slogan “a place to think” – and yet fills every Friday evening/night with six hours of rock music?

Which is staffed by illiterate presenters who say such as “I’m sat…I’m stood”; “Deteriate”; “Mitigate against”; “refute” (for “repudiate”) etc ad nauseam.

Whose same presenters are emotionally incontinent and whose standard question is about feeling – for instance, “How did you feel when your mother died in that house fire?”

Besides, why is the BBC presenting yet another satirical show, W1A, when it already broadcasts so many other programmes which can only be described as satires, such as Strictly Come Dancing; Mrs Brown’s Boys;  Woman’s Hour; Songs of Praise; Celebrity Money for Nothing; The Andrew Marr Show; The Today Programme and anything fronted by Lucy Worsley?

09 Sep

Preposterous and shameful

“Chief Constable defends his decision to take evidence which helped to convict a paedophile gang from a man convicted of raping children.”

That was the newspaper headline. But Chief Constable Steve Ashman should not be required to defend his actions

Northumbria Police’s decision to pay the unnamed convict almost £10,000 came to light when details of the case were revealed last month.

The seventeen rapists were sentenced for their crime of recruiting mainly underage girls, giving them drugs and then persuading or forcing them into sex,  Steve Ashman described the “outpouring of public support” for his force’s decisions.

Mr Ashman said: “When reflecting upon the morality of the decision, I think it’s important to take account of public opinion. If the moral compass was spinning when it was first made public a few weeks ago, when the verdicts were handed out, it’s absolutely fixed now in our favour. If I had any doubt, and I didn’t personally, but if I had any doubt whether it was the right thing to do, then I’m absolutely determined now that it was right.”

Of course it was right. The only consideration in this matter is not the pedigree of the witness but that of whether his evidence was reliable: in a word, whether it could be certified that what he told the police was the truth. It was. And without it the seventeen men and one woman who constituted that gang of child molesters would still be at large. The fact that these wicked people are now behind bars is a tribute to Steve Ashman’s courage and a cause for small rejoicings.

Regrettably, mind you, only for small rejoicings.

The conviction in Northumbria was a rare event. For the systematic rape and sexual abuse has been going on for decades in a score of British towns and cities.  The perpetrators get away with it because they are all Muslims and they operate in ghettoes into which the police rarely venture. If they do so venture and make accusations, the cry goes up, “Islamophobia!” And the police, fearful they will be charged with “racism” and lose their livelihood, back off.

If these rapists were white men, they would be behind bars before you could say “Allahu Akbar – drug that girl!”

The most shocking aspect of this sordid affair is that, in all those towns and cities, the systematic rapes are still happening and the perpetrators remain free to do as they like.

There was one word missing from that newspaper report I read this morning. The word is “Muslim.” It is the correct word. For all the rapists were Muslims. There was not a Methodist among them, nor a Seventh Day Adventist, nor a Guardian-reading freethinker. The rapists’ defining characteristic is their adherence to Islam.

Two different systems of criminal justice are operating in this country today: one for Muslims and the other for indigenous whites. This is shameful and utterly preposterous. And the matter is further compounded by the fact that hardly anyone dares mention the fact.