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article imageOp-Ed: Yet more SWP nonsense on the riots

By Alexander Baron     Aug 17, 2011 in Politics
The lunacy of the Socialist Workers Party knows no bounds, nor do the limits to which it and its fellow travellers will go to excuse criminal damage, plunder, arson, and even murder.
Since the riots, the SWP website has been working overtime churning out a constant stream of babble. It would be pointless to attempt to read much less analyse it all, but a feel for its general silliness can be gleaned from the contributions of Darcus Howe, A Sivanandan, and an uncredited editorial-type piece that claims Call Me Dave is on the rampage.
This latter article kicks off with some righteous indignation about the shooting of Mark Duggan. Whether or not the police lied about it, it is unwise at this stage for anyone – including the SWP – to say too much about this tragic incident. One suspects the very last thing either they or the Duggan family want is to prejudice any future trial of any police officer(s) in connection with Mark Duggan’s death, and possibly jeopardise the proceedings.
Having said that, we are told not only that the victim’s family are embittered but that “The riots spread because so many young people shared that deep bitterness.”
It remains to be seen how precisely any bitterness young people anywhere may feel towards the shooting of one man most of them didn’t know can be connected to the vandalising and looting of local businesses, many of them owned by small shopkeepers, of whom a considerable number are Asian. If whites had done this, it would have been considered racism, but because it is a hodge podge of youth from all backgrounds, that makes it all right?
The real problems we are told are poverty and – bore, bore – racism. Let’s focus on the poverty. If these communities are so poor, how does burning them to the ground improve the quality of life of the people living there? How did torching a Croydon shop that has been run by the same family for five generations improve the lot of the people of Croydon? How did burning down the Clapham branch of Duncan Mundell’s fancy dress supplier combat poverty in either South London or South East Asia where this apparently so wicked capitalist has been working to alleviate poverty among kids who don’t log onto Facebook to organise riots or film their friends rampaging and attacking strangers on their mobile phones?
How does burning down a carpet store, destroying the homes and threatening the lives of the people who live above it combat either poverty or racism?
Then there is the wisdom of Darcus Howe. Howe came to Britain from Trinidad via the USA as a young man, and hated it so much that he stayed for the next five decades. The white, liberal establishment has been surprisingly benevolent towards him, and he has made a comfortable living as a journalist and broadcaster preaching about how the wicked racist system is so unkind to blacks, if not to him personally.
In his Socialist Worker article, Howe is contemptuous of what he calls the small black elite, and his response to them is “F**k you” – fill in the asterisks yourself. One of the people he attacks is the Tottenham MP David Lammy, although he stops short of calling him an Uncle Tom. Lammy’s predecessor was Bernie Grant, who was cut from the same cloth as Howe, and no stranger to controversy. Lammy on the other hand is no firebrand, and prefers actions to triple-decibel rhetoric; having said that, he has spoken out forcefully against the wanton criminality of the rioters in no uncertain terms, and for that, Howe tells him “F**k you”?
Howe goes on to compare the riots with what he calls the insurrections in Syria, Libya and Egypt; sadly he is not the first and won’t be the last person to use that flawed analogy.
Our third contributor is another veteran race agitator; born in Sri Lanka, A Sivanandan has spent the best part of five decades with the Institute of Race Relations, an organisation that has produced some of the most pernicious and factually inaccurate “anti-racist” propaganda ever seen anywhere.
Of the riots he says “I have been asked if this has happened because multiculturalism has failed. On the contrary, multiculturalism has succeeded at the point of riot: the rioters came from all communities.”
So there you have it, because there are gangs of blacks, gangs of whites, and gangs of both attacking the police, trashing businesses, beating pensioners to death, mowing down young (Asian) men in stolen cars, and in one disgraceful incident captured on video, violently assaulting and then robbing a young Malaysian tourist, this constitutes success. How do we account for this sort of nonsense?
For the ultra-left, ideology comes first, always, and when there is a conflict with evidence, logic or common sense, they must all be sacrificed to it. Capitalism is always evil; racism – however nebulously defined – is a product of capitalism rather than of biology or indeed anything else. Ditto sexism and homophobia. Although violently opposed to anti-Semitism, as far as the Middle East is concerned the Palestinians can do no wrong, ever, Zionism being the last form of white Imperialism, which is why some of these idiots like the poet Tom Paulin can denounce racial bigotry on the one hand and calmly call for the murders of settlers on the other. By the same logic, native-born white Britons could call for the murder of non-whites, but of course that would be both racism and fascism.
Curiously, however much the SWP et al may rail against capitalism, the one thing they never mention is banking reform. They will, it is true, denounce bankers and fat cats in general terms, but beyond calling for increased taxation – which destroys investment rather than redistributing income – they have absolutely nothing to say. Could it be that the conspiracy theorists are right after all?
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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