Wednesday, 30 June 2021

What's on the wireless?

When I was growing up in the sixties and seventies the number of radio stations was as limited as the number of TV channels we were able to watch. I'm old enough to remember the launch of Radio One in 1967 but didn't really take much notice of it util secondary school days when I finally got my very own transistor radio or "tranny" as we called them in those days but has developed a completely different meaning these days I'm told.

Much of what I listened to was this huge old Bush radio that my parents had. It even took time to warm up and generally was only used to listen to comedy programmes like The Navy Lark, The Clitoroe Kid and one that I only really appreciated in later life Around The Horne.

But other than the BBC Home Service (Radio 4), BBC Light Programme and Radio 3 there was limted scope for music lovers, even when Radio One was launched it was the main station as the pirate radio stations were virtually impossible to get where I lived and Radio Luxembourg only broadcast in the evenings and had that annoying habit of fading out.

Even the launch of commercial radio wasn't that exiting as all we really got were commercial versions of Radio One like Capitol Radio in London which I did listen to but not for some years now. It wasn't until the launch of Digital Radio that we really got choice in what we could listen to.

One of the earliest stations I latched onto was Planet Rock which has changed over the years but still a great station and one that kept me entertained whilst paralysed in a hospital bed for several months. Alice Cooper you were a life saver after lights out!

Of course DAB has expanded somewhat and in addition to Planet Rock I've added the revamped and relaunched Radio Caroline to my list of recommended channels. Heck I've even reached the age where I quite happily tune into Boom Radio which is reminiscent in many ways of the old BBC Light service when the mood takes me. Almost a complete circle in listening tastes since childhood!

Point is there are so many, too many radio channels these days and I do tend to only tune in to just a few that now includes Times Radio which has replaced Radio 4 as my main source of news. There is however one radio station that I have dipped in and out of over the year that remains a worthwhile plug and that is the BBC World Service. Excellent station for foreign news and in depth reports.

Now I'm told that there is a new service DAB Plus with many more stations but I will need new equipment to listen to these. At the moment I just cannot afford or be bothered with investing in yet another DAB Radio (I already have two one which also plays CDs) I suppose I can never say never....

Monday, 28 June 2021

Labour's ill-advised leaflet in Batley & Spen results in protests from Indian members


Over the last couple of days the Labour candidate Kim Leadbeater has attracted a lot of sympathy after the appalling bullying she has been putting up with that finally surfaced in a video showing her being pursued by a homophobic gang of Islamists with Iranian Press TV and the Five Pillars group conveniently being around for the opportunity. 

Add to that the attacks on Labour canvassers by "youths" and it's clear that with all the deliberate stirring going on to turn the Muslim community against Starmer's party you'd think that Labour would have the moral high ground to avoid going down the dirty tricks road.

At the same time leaflets pretending from the Labour Party stirring trouble over "taking the knee" have been inn circulation. The origin of these leaflets is unknown and has further poisoned the atmosphere in Batley & Spen

Sadly the above leaflet which uses the divisive Kashmir issue to appeal to Muslim voters turned out to be real and has resulted in a protest from Labour Friends Of India. Kashmir, like the I/P conflict is a complex issue, however crass opportunism in trying to compete with Galloway has put this leaflet on the wrong side of the fence.

Further info:

Stand up against political intimidation and violence in Batley


The by-election is Batley and Spen was always going to attract some level of controversy due to the fact it was where a teacher had to go into hiding after death threats from Islamic extremists. The entry of George Galloway into the fray with a stated agenda of bringing down Keir Starmer as leader of the Labour Party and playing his false championship of Muslims to the large local community was going to cause divisions.

However the situation has got out of hand. First of all the Labour candidate was targeted for being a Lesbian by local activists from  the Muslim community and an extremist who was already well known for protesting against LGB rights outside a Birmingham school at which he had no children. 

The fact that the Iranian Clerics Press TV happened to be in toe at the time suggests this was not co-incidental. Also present were the extremists of the Five Pillars website/group which is currently ru by an ex-employee of guess what TV station?!

The twitter storm that arose around the issue showed that conservative elements in the local Muslim community were doing their best to undermine Labour with straightforward homophobia and religious instruction.

Five Pillars had the nerve to say the return of a Labour MP would make the local Muslim community look foolish. Frankly the only people taking the piss out of the local Muslim community were charlatans like George Galloway, Five Pillars and Press TV. 

The physical attacks on Labour Canvassers by "youths" shows how low that the Islamist extremists and opportunistic outsiders have dragged local politics between them. When they go they will bewteen them leave a very divided constituency having wrecked community relations and stirred up more trouble than any visit by Tommy Robinson could ever have achieved.

I was and am critical of the local Labour candidate and her campaign but regardless of that if I lived in Batley and Spen I would not only vote for her but campaign for the Labour Party in order to fight back against both the Islamists and the odious Galloway who should be exposed for the deceiver he is.

Further Info:

Vote Labour. Vote Kim Leadbeater on Thursday

Sunday, 27 June 2021

Banquet: Underground Sounds of 1969 (Cherry Red Records)

The latest compilation from Cherry Red Records covers the year 1969 and acts as a kind of "prequel" to the coming or defining of Prog Rock the genre of music that so many of us grew up with in the seventies. Many of the groups featured on this album will be familiar such as Yes, Genesis, Barclay James harvest and Family. 

Deep Purple, Free and Jack Bruce also put in an appearance but a usual it is the bands that were unknown or long forgotten that were the most interesting as this track Billy The Monster from The Deviants helps illustrate.

Alongside these are other well known outfits such as Fleetwood Mac, Procol Harem, the Moody Blues and that long forgotten band Fat Mattress. No me neither but for the record here's All Night Drinker:

However there was one band I was quite overjoyed to see on this compilation, Colosseum whose album Valentyne Suite was amongst the first albums I ever had. Sadly no longer in my possession but here's Kettle to give you a taste of this great band.

This is a three CD set with a total of 52 tracks that compliments the Prog Rock compilations for 1970, 71 & 72 that have previously been released, not forgetting a couple of other sets which cover seventies rock and "Bubble gum pop". These are worth collecting as they cover a lot of historic ground during that very creative period in British music..

Lets end with one more sample track Theme From An Imaginary Western by Jack Bruce:

Banquet is available from:

Saturday, 26 June 2021

Beyond Batley - Missing Post

Due to a technical error on my part, that is to say I wasn't paying enough attention to what I was doing late at night the post "Beyond Batley" from Friday was accidentally deleted. 

I have been unable to restore the article and apologise to any readers that may have clicked on the links from Facebook or twitter looking for it.

Given continuing controversies in the run up to Thursdays voting I have no doubt I will return to the subject either before or certainly after the result is declared.


Monday, 21 June 2021

Stand with us and say NO to Beijing 2022


Join our Global Day of Action in London as we say NO to Beijing 2022.

Beijing is due to host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games next February, despite the appalling human rights record of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which includes religious repression and genocide. Horrifying human rights abuses are being directed from Beijing against Tibetans, Uyghurs, Hongkongers and Chinese citizens.

We are gathering in London on 23 June, Olympic Day, to say loud and clear: Enough is enough.

When: 23 June 5pm - 7pm

Where: Downing Street, London

Speakers: Representatives from the Tibetan Community in Britain, World Uyghur Congress, Power to Hongkongers and Hong Kong Watch

You: Bring your flags, placards and voices and be ready to tell the UK government that you will not stay silent.

Join us to tell the British government to say NO to genocide, NO to repression and NO to the CCP's Olympics. If not now…when?

Sunday, 20 June 2021

Briefing: Galloway's "Workers Party" opportunism and his Maoist backers


"The establishment of the Workers Party, with the anti-imperialist and socialist politician George Galloway at its head, can provide inspiration to those who, like himself, find themselves politically homeless or desire to put their talents, creativity and energies at the service of the working class."

Introduction to The Workers Party

The parliamentary carpetbagger George Galloway is standing as the "Workers Party" in Batley and Spen by-election where his entire strategy is designed to undermine the Labour Party. Friend of Jeremy Corbyn and someone who falsely presents themselves as champion of all things Muslim this opportunist also works for the Putin controlled RT (Russian TV).

Labour canvassers who have been in the constituency allege his supporters have been raising the "orientation" of the Labour candidate which may explain his rather odd tweet about gays in the BBC Radio drama The Archers.  What the candidates sexuality has to do with anything except to religious and other bigots is best known to those who use as a weapon against her. 

It's not the only allegation that Labour members have made. According to reports the fact Starmer has a Jewish wife has also been made an issue though the origins of this nasty piece of hate may have more local origins in the quite conservative Muslim community which is believed to hold around 8,000 votes which could be crucial in the election. 

Remember this is the area where a school teacher remains in hiding because of the intervention of extremists whipping up discord amongst some local Muslim parents.

The Workers Party was formed in December 2019 with comrade George Galloway as it's Great Leader and a deputy by the name of Joti Brar. It is the latter whose involvement shows the duplicity of this so-called "Workers Party."

Joti Brar also happens to be Vice-Chair of the Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist Leninist) which was founded by her father Harpal Brar when he split with Arthur Scargill over support for North Korea and left the Socialist Labour Party.

The CPGB(M-L) has been in existence since 2004 and is committed to the traditions of just Lenin, Stalin and Mao but also Albanian dictator Enver Hoxher the dead but still "eternal President of the Republic" Kim-Il Sung, father of the murderous Kim Jong-un who has just told his people (in the perfect "socialist republic") to expect the worst as  North Korea faces yet another famine.

Like Galloway the CPGB(M-L) also supports the regimes in Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and the murderous Clerics of Iran on the grounds these are upposedly "anti-imperialist regimes. Like Galloway they plug the Palestinian issue because they see the destruction of Israel as a necessary part of the process in overthrowing "international capitalism. The Jews  Zionists are simply an inconvenience.

There are other similarities between Galloway and his Stalinist allies in that both are opposed to identity politics on the grounds that these are a "reactionary nightmare" imposed by the bourgeoisie. The rest of us of course recognise that "identity politics" is in fact an imposition from the left rather than the right as the "culture wars" demonstrate.

Galloway of course will always be remembered for his "will you be my pussycat" moment in Big Brother but they also allowed him to get a copy of his favourite book "The Communist Manifesto by Marx & Engles in as a "luxury" which shows what a pretentious boring old sod he really is but there's plenty of reading to be had from his mates at their Bookshop!

Besides the usual stuff from Marx & Lenin these include several tomes by mass murderer one Joseph Stalin. If you are so inclined you can join their Stalin Society and worship the long dead gangster as well as support the world's living dictators.

George Galloway keeps such wonderful company but let's not forget one of his more famous speeches....

Saturday, 19 June 2021

Blackpink -The Album

In a bit of departure from the normal fare I picked up this album from "K-Pop" band Blackpink which is not a new release but reached number two in the UK album charts last year. Until now I've only listened to K-Pop on You Tube as the performances which are highly professionally choreographed really enhance the experience.

The first band I came across was AOA who I understand are no longer around but there's plenty of girl groups to choose from for us boys anyway. Being yer average heterosexual male of a certain age who has never had problems with his gender or identity I do find I'm only interested in the ladies. I'm sure that the boy groups have their followers from the opposite sex.

K-Pop of course originates in South Korea and faces the ire of young rabid old murderous commie Kim Yong-un who describes this music as a " vicious cancer" but then you are talking about a man who had his uncle executed using an anti-aircraft gun. Right charmer.

Photo: By @K_POP

However I digress. This album is worth a spin (old fashioned term for this digital age) and does show the good vocal ranges of the girls in the group. One word of warning. It's not very long, just 24 minutes in fact which is roughly what I would expect on one side of a vinyl album. 

Blackpink are Jisso, Jennie, Rose and Lisa.


Friday, 18 June 2021

Beckett withdraws from Unite General Secretary election contest


Despite foot stamping and all the shouting Howard Beckett has withdrawn from the General Secretary election contest in favour of Steve Turner the left's preferred candidate. 

This shows how afraid of the threat Gerard Coyne the mainstream candidate is to the hard left's hegemony in. Unite.  With Sharon Graham still in the running the fight is far from over and Coyne gave McCluskey a fright last time. 

If you are a member of Unite please support Gerard Coyne for General Secretary not just because he is the best man for the job and will put members before political posturing but would help tip the balance in favour of Keir Starmer inside the Labour Party at this difficult time.

Go to: for further information.


The following statement was issued by Steve Turner & Howard Beckett:

Monday, 14 June 2021

Labour panders to communalism in Batley & Spen


When Kim Leadbeater was pictured with a group of extremists sporting t-shirts with maps that wiped out Israel out of existence I gave her the benefit of the doubt. After all this a woman whose sister had been murdered by a racially inspired extremist and she had been endorsed by the Starmer leadership by being parachuted into the after just 4 months  membership really couldn't be anything but naive surely?

Her initial leaflets showed she was going to take an interest in primarily local issues as can be seen in her tweet below.

Yet the entry of George Galloway has the local party panicking. There is a large Muslim community in Batley which according to figures provided by the Muslim Council of Britain have up to and around 9,000 potential votes. There have also been interventions by extremist groups locally as seen in the deliberately provoked demonstrations and threats against a local teacher who dared to teach his students about the world around them which would include things they might not necessarily like.

Unfortunately for him he was forced into hiding after threats and the cowardly actions of the Head teacher not backing him. The fundamentalists managed to achieve the intimidation of others as is their way.

This factor no doubt encouraged political carpetbagger and charlatan George Galloway who earns a buck or two by pandering to the politically and religiously backward  with the anti-imperialism of fools. His avowed intent was to damage the Labour Party by attracting the Muslim vote by pandering to the communities prejudices over the Middle East with his fawning support for the Palestinians. 

As one can see from the leaflet now in circulation from Leadbeater the Labour Party despite everything also panders to the perceived prejudices of one section of the community about Palestine and adds Kashmir to the mix. The Islamist agenda taken on board.

It comes at a time when the "Labour Muslim Network" led by the Corbynites has been undermining Keir Starmer as Labour List reports:

Momentum’s Mish Rahman, who sits on Labour’s ruling national executive committee, said the polling “reflects a disastrous failure of Starmer’s leadership to represent millions of Muslim voters, who are a key bedrock of Labour’s support”.

He added: “I was canvassing in Batley and Spen this weekend, and over and over again voters wanted to talk to me about Palestine. They were justifiably angry at the Labour leadership’s failure to take a clear moral and practical stance in support of the Palestinian people.”

Comments like this show why the hard left is so keen to ignore antisemitism and the genocidal aims of groups like Hamas and their Iranian allies.

Of course the problem for Labour is that the bulk of the constituency is unlikely to be impressed by this leaflet and may find it backfiring badly. The betrayal of not just the Jewish community it tried to woo back after being thrown to the wolves by Corbyn but also the Indians will not be forgotten by either group.

I don't have a vote in the constituency and the liklihood of what I say having any influence in the by-election with a small blog being non-existent makes any view of mine irrelevant but for those who are listening I would not now vote for Leadbeater, Labour candidate or not.

The people of this country deserve an opposition party that seeks compromise and peace when it comes to complex conflicts. Pandering to communalism as does Galloway is a dangerous and thoroughly reactionary road to take.

Friday, 11 June 2021

Garbage: No Gods No Masters (New Album)

The long awaited new studio album from Garbage was released today and well worth the wait as the band continue to deliver the sounds they are famous for with an edge. There is much more of a political content in the songs which reflects the times we live in I suppose.

However regardless the album contains 11 strong songs with a high level of musiaship from the band and solid vocals from the ever talented Shirley Mason.

Official website:

Act Now! Brazil: End the anti-union attacks on health workers

Eric Lee writes: 

It is no secret that the Brazilian government's response to the COVID-19 crisis has been one of the worst in the world. A lethal combination of denial, public violation of the basic practices of social distancing recommended by the World Health Organization, and active sabotage of efforts to acquire vaccines.

Health authorities in the state of São Paulo did not prepare the health system despite knowing that Covid-19 was on the way. In March 2020, the Health Workers’ Union Sindsaúde-SP had to go to Court just to get the State Health Secretariat to agree to sit down together and talk about pandemic responses including the lack of Personal Protective Equipment – PPE and Covid 19 testing for health workers.

Several complaints about lack of PPE and terrible working conditions were published in the press. Union leaders Edson Fedelino and Marilurdes Silva de Faria were interviewed and quoted. Instead of talking to the workers and their union to resolve these problems, their employer decided to suspend them for 30 days without pay.

Please support these union leaders by demanding the immediate reversal of Edson and Marilurdes' suspensions.

Support the PSI campaign on LabourStart here.

Sunday, 6 June 2021

A question of religion


Alistair Campbell once famously said "we don't do god" when questioned about religion. Over the years religion has come to be less important in British political affairs as illustrated by the complete lack of concern that our Prime Minister is now "outed" as being a Catholic.

Nobody cares except a few people who went on social media pronouncing on the rights and wrongs of him being married in a Catholic Church whilst the majority of people didn't give a damn. That was something unthinkable given the militant Protestantism and anti-catholic prejudice that founded modern Britain.

Even as late as 1978 Enoch Powell was a warning against the Papery and went on to become a Unionist MP. Northern Ireland (along with parts of Scotland and Liverpool) are exceptions to the declining role of religion in politics. However there one other area where religion has grown in influence.

When the Rushdie Affair broke out about his novel The Satanic Verses the reaction from large sections of the British Muslim community caught everybody by surprise. Until then like most people in this country Islam was not something I really thought about and just associated the religion with Arabs and not much else before then.

Even the left didn't know how how to react to the the death threats which were manipulated by the Iranian clerical dictator Khomeini as part of what turned out to be part of their attempt to increase their influence in the Muslim world. 

One of the more influential far-left groups in this country the International Marxist Group had found itself with not one but two co-thinking groups in Iran as a result of an ideological split over the question of the Fourth International's approach to to supporting the "Iranian Revolution". One group supported the wearing of the hijab, the other opposed it.

Both groups ended up suppressed and broken in exile as the Clerics cracked down on on all opposition illustrating the dangers of backing reactionary movements not that the far-left or even a lot of the mainstream and liberal establishment is much better in it's approach.

The Batley and Spen by-election comes at the same time Ed Husain a reformed Islamic extremist and former adviser to Tony Blair publishes his new book . The Times reported:

...mosques are stocking books that call members of al-Queda bretheren and refuse to acknowledge their role in the September 11 attacks. In some conservative areas Muslim parents have forbidden their children to take part in drama because it is seen as corrupting.

Husain said that women were being alienated and left unprotected because of the rise of the Sharia court.

The paralell legal system in which they were married is not recognised under British law and meant women were at risk because their husbands could unilaterally divorce them. They do not have recourse to legal protection in terms of financial support and are not able to divorce a potentially abusive or controlling husband as only he can grant permission Husain said.

In his review of Husain's book, Jawad Iqbal wites in the Saturday Review:

The troubling relaity is that Islam in Britain is dominated by an ultra-orthodox version of the faith by a sect known as the Deobandis. They control almost half of Britains mosques. This is a group that gave birth to the Taliban in Afghanistan. A flavour of their ideas come in edicts that womwn should not leave the home unless necessary, music is frowned upon.

Both Husain and Iqbal talk of very real segregation and near apartheid in some areas around the country which should be of concern but raising these issues leads to cries of "Islamophobia" from the hard left, let alone the very real extremists in the Muslim community itself.  Even the "liberal" establishment and some women's rights activists talk as if treading on eggshells when it comes to these issue.

There are some like Maryam Namazie and groups like the One Law For All Campaign and the Council of Ex Muslims who do speak out but are themselves attacked by white liberals and leftists who conflate atheism and secularist demands with supposed Islamophobia.

It is in this environment that allows the right like Anne Marie Waters to write about why she is standing in the forthcoming by-election:

According to the Times, Batley and Spen is one of the top 15 constituencies where Muslim voters are “most influential”. The sharia-advocating Muslim Council of Britain believes around 8,000 Muslims will vote. This is good news for one of the candidates George Galloway, whose history of sucking up to Muslims is well known. His presence will mean that Labour cannot be guaranteed the Muslim vote, something it will be less able to rely on in the future when Islamic parties promising sharia begin to form and win.

The Muslim population of the constituency is around 20% and it shows. The town of Batley hit international headlines recently in a show of just the kind of muscle we can expect in a town with a large Muslim population, and it is this that prompted me to stand.....

....The bullying and intimidation of non-Muslims – mostly white – across Yorkshire and throughout Britain is so utterly toxic. If it were happening to anyone besides white people, it would be an international scandal. It has been going on for decades as Muslim immigrants congregated and wanted to make areas their own

Every action has a counter reaction and the self-imposed segregation of some communities has led to the inevitable backlash. Not one anyone would like to see continued by either extreme.

I recall bemoaning the end of children shouting "penny for guy" that I grew up with and was a feature in all those comics we used to read. Most of us knew about but didn't really care about he origins of fireworks night and it's decline and seeming replacement by the more "secular" Halloween (though not all witches are evil as Pagans might point out) is a sign that is possible to move away from hundreds of years of hate.

How we tackle the conflict that has arisen in some areas and end the mutually exclusive prejudice which has arisen since the Rushdie Affair will be a long and difficult one. The nation has become accepting of a Catholic Prime Minister but the schism arising around fundamentalist Islam and the difficulties of integration shown in the recent cartoon affair in Batley shows there is a long way to go.

Friday, 4 June 2021

More fringe candidates for Batley & Spen By-election

Photo: By Kuolem a - Own work, CC

The number of candidates for the Batley & Spen By-election due July 1st is attracting a lot of attention following the resignation of the sitting MP.  Following the loss of Hartlepool, Labour are concerned they might lose a second seat which will trigger a renewed civil war inside their party. If the Tories score another victory it will strengthen Boris Johnson's government.

Already there are fears that parliamentary carpetbagger George Galloway will attract sufficient votes from the large Muslim community with his pretentious rhetoric about Palestine. Just a thousand or so could seriously undermine an already struggling Labour candidate who has already caused internal controversy by being pictured with pro-Palestinian wearing t-shirts illustrating the genocide of Israel. 

The hard left raised objections to Kim Leadbeaters candidacy after she was fast tracked after just four month's membership. Labour had been planning to capitalise on the fact she was the murdered local MP's sister. 

Already the far-right organisation Britain First has announced it will stand Jayda Fransen for the constituency which will cause controversy as Jo Cox's murderer shouted Britain First during the attack. Fransen has denied any connection wit the killer.

Finally in addition to all the normal fringe parties another right wing organisation For Britain led by Anne Marie Waters who began political life as a campaigner for secular rights and was in the running to be a Labour candidate before being accused of "Islamophobia" and former contestant for leadership of UKIP will be standing for the relatively new For Britain Party.

For Britain is backed by the controversial singer Morrissey and a recent video showed Anne Marie in conversation with Tommy Robinson about her candidature and the need for security during he campaign as she announces her candidature for the seat.


With so many political parties expected to contest this seat and the challenges that may face Keir Starmer and the Labour Party should their candidate fail to retain the seat will make this a very interesting by-election to stay up and watch.

Wednesday, 2 June 2021

In the news today....

When I was working I had a set routine to get the news. First thing in the morning it would generally be the Today Programme on Radio 4 as I got ready to leave and then would pick up a newspaper, usually The Times at lunchtime (as there was no newsagents on my morning journey) and would generally pick up the Ten O'Clock news on either channel depending on what I had been watching.

Sometimes I would watch either the BBC, ITN or Sky News channels as Freeview arrived but still like dipping into the BBC World Service for international news. At the weekend I would generally pick up papers on both Saturday and Sunday.

Come retirement and all that has gone out the window. Unfortunately ill health means I have disrupted sleeping patterns and no longer go out every day so how I see the news has changed with it. I've stopped listening to the Today programme and given the different hours I potter about tend to choose Times Radio since it launched. Made sense given I was more or less a lifetime reader!

Whilst I still read The Times and make sure I pick up a copy when I do go out and make an effort to get the Saturday edition I have more or less given up on the Sunday papers unless there's an election or something really interesting to read about. I will admit to missing the News of the World a scandal sheet that bemused my girlfriend and I for all the wrong reasons......

As for television broadcasts now that we have a smart TV which gives me access to extra channels such as CNN, Reuters News & Euro News in addition to the extra channels Freeview provides these are worthwhile dipping into occasionally. However no channel has my full attention as they tend to be very repetitive. 

The news that Andrew Neil a journalist and broadcaster I admire is launching a new channel that wil include more than just rolling news and include shows that will give differing opinions and viewpoints does attract my interest. 

I will be watching the channel when it's launched and hope it is what it promises to be in which case I will become a regular viewer. What makes me even more determined to give this project support is the reaction of the so-called left who on Corbyn's mis-titled "Peace and Justice" Facebook Page calling for GB News to be banned as "biased" before it's actually broadcast a word. 

The hypocrisy of these people amazes me since Corbyn and his crew including the leaders of the anti-Western democracy Stop the War Coalition regularly appear on and get paid by press TV the now banned channel which broadcast an interview with a man who was under the supervision of hsi torturers  exposes the bankrupt politics these self-righteous types are.

And don't mention RT, the Russian propaganda channel with the George Galloway show ranting about anything that will gain him attention. Now that's like Fox News!

Thankfully we are lucky to live in the Free World and can get news from a variety of souces and make our our own minds up something the people of Iran and Russia have difficulty in obtaining let alone countries like China and North Korea.

GB News starts broadcasting on Sunday June 13th at 8pm with a special programme. I'll be there with an open mind and will be giving it a fair hearing over the coming weeks. I wish it success.

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Beyond The Pale Horizon: The British Progressive Pop Sounds of 1972 (Cherry Red Records)

Cherry Red Records have just released their third collection of Progressive Pop sounds this time covering 1972. The 3 CD set contains 65 tracks from the year including not just well known entries such as Silver Machine from Hawkwind, Virginia Plain by Roxy Music and America by Yes but also lesser known songs from well known bands and a lot of stuff that you might not remember or heard of at the time given the limited outlets to listen to music back in the day.

The set kicks off with Theme One from Van Der Graaf Generator and one of the two songs that got me into Prog Rock Hold Your Head Up from Argent albeit the single version. I went out and purchased my first ever LP, All Together Now to get their extended version with church organ solo!

Family are another band who peaked my interest the Prog Rock Genre and the first ever single I ever got was from them but this collection includes Burlesque from their Bandstand album another early purchase for me as a schoolboy!

There are a couple of surprising entries in this collection which I like but would not have included as "Prog" including Wonderin' Y from Slade and Paper Plane by Status Quo. Minor point though really.

There's a lot of the usual suspects like Nazareth with Fool About You and Uriah Heap's song Traveller In Time. The latter were always an "album" band who I regret never having the opportunity to see in concert. Whoever chose the songs added one of my favourite groups the highly under-rated Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band with King Of Scurf. Always thought they deserved better commercial success than they did.

Sixties band The Troggs make an appearance as do Medicine Head, Caravan and The Moody Blues.

There's plenty of bands I'm not familiar with which is always interesting even if a couple of tracks are't that great but it's always worth exploring their output on You Tube or Amazon Music. Also featured are The Move and there's a Roy Wood "solo" track Wake Up.

Did I mention Lindisfarne, Ralph McTell, Rare Bird and Bombadil? There's also another Tolkein inspired outfit Hobbit.  

This like the previous albums in this series (see below) is a worth while purchase. 

Available from:

Editorial: Retaining an independent voice


Photo: By Google

When I moved to opening a new blog I decided to very much focus of the internal conflict within the Labour to fight back against the remaining Corbyn supporting elements and the other entryists that had wrecked the party. Combined with separate and additional posts through Facebook I hoped this would help push back the far/hard left and although I wasn't ready or willing to join the party directly I did take the step of joining an affiliate, the Jewish Labour Movement.

It's clear to me that the fight is far from over and that whilst I am prepared to lend support to those standing with Keir Starmer I am not prepared to so either unconditionally or uncritically. Where I disagree with Starmer or his supporters I will say so. There can be no return to the kind of cultism that came into being with Corbyn.

It's clear to me that even amongst the moderates there is a long way to go. Some of the reactions to the prime Ministers reactions amongst Labour members and supporters I thought I had some common ground with smacks of the same attitudes that I would expect from the not so "kinder, gentler politics" that Corbyn's supporters held.

The abuse and venom that I have seen shows that Labour has a long way to returning to decency and shows why not just the supposed "red wall" fell but why Hartlepool and probably the forthcoming Batley and Spen by-elections proved unfavourable to Labour. despite everything Labour remains behind in the polls.

Some of the comments I have seen range from the hateful tot he ridiculous. One "comrade on a Starmer supporting Facebook page remarked:

"They didn’t need to get married now, it’s disrespectful to the families of the ones we now know didn’t need to die. It’s theatre"

Another mused insanely:

It is so she cannot now be called under oath to go evidence against her husband.

These are from so-called moderate to mainstream Labour supporters and their comments are far from unique or unsupported. Just yet another reason why I can't see the Labour Party even under Starmer as a place for me.

The need to build a modern social democratic party built around realistic politics that can restore at least some decency to British politics has never been greater but although there are some good people in the Labour Party I remain unconvinced that this current generation of members is entirely up to the task. I had high hopes but these as usual remain dashed against by the hate that motivates so many in the party today.

The time has come for me to make my own way in politics or at least political comment. Whilst I will retain my membership of the JLM as one can never say never I have no intention of limiting my views based on any misplaced faith or loyalty to any political tendency. I remain as always a freethinker. 

It's also time for some change this blog once more. I have continued to post about music and have prepared one for later tonight. I will also continue to support campaigns run by LabourStart  for free trade unionism around the world along with those run by Free Tibet, Free West Papua & We Believe In Israel. The fight against antisemitism, religious fundamentalism and the gender-fascists will continue.

Additionally I will from time to time just comment on other wider, more general issues that concern me plus more as I see fit. I hope you will join me.


Note: I have added a number of Radio, Record Company and News websites to the sidebar