Sunday, 1 October 2017

European Outlook # 46 October 2017

All articles are by Bill Baillie unless otherwise stated. The opinions of guest writers are entirely their own. This blog is protected by the UN Declaration of Human Rights, Article 19: "We all have the right to make up our own minds, to think what we like, to say what we think, and to share our ideas with other people."

A Vision of the Future

The Nazis were as divided over Europe as the politicians of today. Regrettably, nationalist sentiments and ingrained prejudices afflicted the Third Reich. Alfred Rosenberg, the humourless Minister for the Occupied Territories, believed in a Nordic Master Race sprung from the lost continent of Atlantis but Joseph Goebells, the down-to-earth Minister of Propaganda, saw the Second World War as a battle between ideas rather than tribes. In his remarkable speech 'Europe in the year 2000', he said:

"Europeans are more and more realizing that our differences are only family squabbles when measured against the vast problems that the continent must solve. I am convinced that just as we look back with some amusement on the narrow-minded conflicts between German provinces in the 1840s and 1850s, our posterity in fifty years will look back with similar amusement on what is going on today in Europe. They will see the "dramatic battles between nations" of small European states as family squabbles. I am convinced that in fifty years we will no longer think in terms of nations, but of continents and that the entirely different, and perhaps much larger, problems will concern Europe."

In order to realise Joseph Goebells' vision of the future, we must embrace all of Europe. Political systems do not last forever. The Soviet Union defeated the armed might of Nazi Germany but it collapsed, almost without a struggle, in 1990. The current European Union is a work in progress. The UK has voted to quit the EU but we are still Europeans and our future is inextricably linked to the mainland. Few of our politicians can visualise the future. Most of them are incapable of seeing beyond the next five years. But Europe will continue to develop and Brexit will be but a footnote to history; a temporary aberration. 

Jan Lamprecht

Jan Lamprecht is a South African author who runs the website.

His articles and videos show South Africa descending into chaos under a corrupt government. Robert Mugabe the dictator of Zimbabwe recently complained to a South African minister that the Whites have got too much power. He replied, "that's the fault of your friend Nelson Mandela." 

South Africa is rich in natural resources and self-sufficient in food but the country is beset by crime and corruption. The Blacks are no better off than they were under apartheid and those Whites that do not live in gated compounds are desperately poor and vulnerable. So much for the promise of the 'Rainbow Nation'.

Jan Lamprecht believes that the five million remaining Whites in Southern Africa can regain control. He maintains that the Black regimes in power are so corrupt and inefficient that they can be overthrown.

The Whites are less than ten percent of the South African population but the Afrikaners faced similar odds at the Battle of Blood River in 1838. A force of 470 Voortrekkers (pioneers) defeated a Zulu army estimated at 80,000 men. The Afrikaners had three men wounded; the Zulus had 3,000 killed. But fate did not always favour the Whiteman. Forty years later a Zulu army of 80,000 warriors defeated a British column of 1,800 men at the Battle of Isandlwana 

In the Battle of Omdurman in 1898 Lord Herbert Kitchener led an Anglo-Egyptian army of 25,000 men against a Sudanese Mahdist army more than twice his size. At the end of the day the Anglo-Egyptians suffered 48 dead and 382 wounded. The Mahdi's army had 12,000 killed, 13,000 wounded, and 5,000 captured. Battles are won with equipment and organisation as well as bravery.

We are unlikely to see the restoration of white rule in South Africa because the international companies that control the gold and diamond industries don't care if the country is run by Whites or Blacks, so long as they have got the mineral rights. Jan Lamprecht blames the Jews for the fare of the Afrikaners but the British Empire was responsible for stealing the gold and diamonds and the nationalistic policies of the Afrikaners discouraged European migrants who went instead to Australia.

The Housing Crisis Gets Worse

The lack of affordable housing, particularly in London, is critical, and the North Kensington tower block disaster has made things even worse. The thousands of apartments that line both banks of the Thames from east to west do little to solve the problem. Most of them are built for investment rather than accommodation. They are bought and sold by foreign investors and remain empty most of the time.

The policy of selling off council houses and flats has reduced the housing stock and construction is hampered by planning permission and the availability of mortgages.

Demands for rent controls are opposed by the Tories who say that landlords would be frightened to rent, but the system works in New York where the courts fix fair rents and tenants' rights are guaranteed.

London now has a majority of private rented properties and house building is not keeping up with the increase in population. People have moved further and further out of the capital in search of affordable housing, but essential workers such as doctors, nurses, police, and fire fighters must be housed locally.

Instead of wasting money on aircraft carriers without planes, and nuclear missiles that will never be used, we should build enough houses and flats for our people to live in. Poor housing breeds desperation and desperate people have no incentive to work hard. Our productivity continues to lag behind our competitors. France produces in four days what we do in five. We must deal with the housing crisis as a matter of urgency and restore the morale of the people.

Those who argue that immigration is to blame for the housing crisis should remember that we had a housing shortage after the war when we had virtually no immigrants. As a temporary measure returning servicemen and their families were housed in prefabricated dwellings.

             Peter Rachman (photo credit

In the fifties, the pimp and rent racketeer Peter Rachman terrorised his Notting Hill tenants with impunity. He was the landlord to Christine Keeler and Mandy Rice Davies, and well connected to the establishment, but he was such a violent criminal that the authorities were forced to act. A lot of people were relieved when Peter Rachman died of a heart attack in 1962 at the early age of 43. He is buried in the Jewish cemetery at Bushey.

The 1965 Rent Act gave some protection to tenants but we need a new Rent Act to stop the current rackets. The trouble is that so many leading politicians are landlords. According to the Daily Mirror Chancellor Philip Hammond gets £10,000 a month for his rented townhouse. 

Ten Miles From Anywhere

John Bean was editor of 'The Wickhambrook Scene' parish magazine from 1975 to 1993. Wickhambrook is the West Suffolk village that he 'escaped' to from Croydon in 1973. It is not a political work but an important social history and a record of a way of life that was threatened when he wrote this book, in 1995, and has all but disappeared since then.

June 1975. Fifty years ago life in Wickhambrook obviously had its charms. But if for some it was the 'good old days', it was also 'very hard old days' compared with today. At least that is the impression we gained when your editor talked to Mrs Edith Claydon.

Mrs Claydon, who was born in Dalham and came to live in Wickhambrook in 1920, states that one of the main differences compared with today is the state of the roads. All the minor roads and what we now call 'B' roads were merely dressed with stones, and road menders could be seen trundling their wheelbarrows to fill in the numerous holes with stones. The main Bury to Haverhill road had superior treatment, however, for here a steamroller was used to bed the stones down more firmly. There were very few cars about until the Thirties arrived. One of the first people in the village to possess a car was Dr Wilkin, which replaced his pony and trap.

At this point, Mrs Claydon added that the late Dr Wilkin was the only doctor and that in those days you went to see him if you were really sick and 'not just for a cut finger'.

If you wanted to go shopping in Bury St Edmunds or Newmarket you went by bicycle or pony and trap, if you were fortunate enough to have either. If not, you could either go on Mr Ernie Hurrell's old bus on market days or with the late Mr Charlie Cook of the Duddery, who had a horse-drawn van fitted with seats and some sort of shelter if it rained. Eastern Counties did not start their bus service until the Thirties.

In those days Wickhambrook was served with five pubs. In addition to The Cloak, the Greyhound and the Plumber's Arms (still with us today as your editor is pleased to say), there was also The White Horse, which closed down about 1926 and is now where Dr Batt lives, and The Walnut Tree at Attleton Green, now the home of Mr & Mrs Crysell. The Walnut Tree was also known as the 'Sizzle'. This was because of the landlord, the son of a butcher, invariably had either some sausages or chops cooking in a pan on an open fire for the customers. The Walnut Tree only closed down some ten years ago.

The Cloak was an independent pub - the others all being Greene King - where the landlord, Mr Ted Mills, brewed his own beer for sale to the customers. It was bought out by Greene King when Mr Mills died in the Thirties.

Opening times would be around 9.00 am right through to 10.00 pm. There were no saloon bars or bars as we know them, just a tap room, and they were, of course, lit by oil lamps. Mrs Claydon stated that with Friday being pay day some - certainly not all - of wives waited hoping there would be some money left to buy food at the shop - which stayed open to 9.00 pm for this purpose. Less timorous wives would go into the pub and pull their spouses out if it seemed to be getting late.

In the homes, everybody relied on wells or pumps, and some even ponds, for their water supplies. Mains water, as with electricity, did not come to Wickhambrook until the mid-Fifties. Only the large houses had indoor sanitation.

The use of slates was still common at Wickhambrook School in the Twenties, and there were no school dinners or free transport for the children. Those children who could not get home to their dinner would bring what their parents could afford, often a piece of bread and dripping, and would wash this down with a drink of water from an old enamelled mug which used to hang on the side of the school pump. The toilets were primitive and heating was provided by coke stoves. School leaving age was thirteen. 

All of John Bean's books; 'Ten Miles From Anywhere', 'Many Shades of Black', 'Blood in the Square', and 'The Trail of the Viking Finger' are available from Amazon.

Reds Under The Bed

                Arthur Scargill (photo credit Wikipedia)

An Aims of Industry booklet from the mid-seventies entitled 'Reds under the Bed' reminds us of the chaos caused by strikes and industrial disputes. There is no doubt that Communists were behind most of the trouble in those days. The Communist Party was controlled by Moscow and its aim was to damage the British economy in order to bring about a Communist Revolution.

"Every politician, every industrial relation specialist, every labour correspondent had been well aware all through the summer and autumn that there were 11 men on the miners' 27-strong executive determined to make trouble for the nation if they possibly could. The Government knew it. Far from seeking a confrontation they specially tailored Stage 3 so that the miners could have a much larger rise than any other group of workers.

The 11 consist of six communists and five members of the 'Labour Left'. The undisputed leader of this dedicated band is Michael McGahey, vice-president and Scottish president of the union, a member of the Communist Party national executive and of its inner cabinet, the political committee. The other Communists are Bill McLean, from Scotland, Joe Whelan from Nottinghamshire, Jack Collins from the Kent coalfield, Peter Tait from Yorkshire, and Dai Francis, from South Wales. Lawrence Daly, the union general secretary, is an ex-communist and usually regarded as a 'hardliner'.

Since 1971 five Marxists of the Labour Left have been elected to the national executive. Their leader is Arthur Scargill from Barnsley, who achieved fame, or maybe notoriety, by leading the violent attack on the Saltley coke depot during the 1972 miners' strike. The other four are Owen Briscoe, from Doncaster, Peter Heathfield, from North Derbyshire, Emlyn Williams, from South Wales, and Eric Clarke, from Scotland." 

The Russian Federation is a parliamentary democracy with a market economy and no interest in British industrial relations. Despite Boris Johnson's enthusiastic backing of American sanctions against the Russians, we do very little trade with them. Russia is virtually self-sufficient and American economic warfare does more harm to countries like Poland that used to export agricultural products to Russia.

In the seventies, when disrupting our industry was part of the Soviet strategy, Aims of Industry were right to expose communist subversion but today there is no foreign involvement. British workers are right to be angry after ten years of cutbacks and wage freezes, especially when MPs get huge increases and BBC 'personalities' take home millions of pounds.

World Trade 

Most trade is internal, and most crops are grown in the country that eats them. In the UK we grow about 60% of our food. We could do better but we import Danish bacon, New Zealand lamb, French wine, Irish stout, and Belgian beer because we like them. We both import and export motor vehicles and machine tools. We could make optical equipment to rival the Germans and they could make jet engines to rival Rolls Royce but we prefer to specialise. Most economies are dominated by services. Instead of making things we earn a living by cleaning windows, flipping burgers, pouring pints, fixing boilers, servicing computers, driving vans, and selling insurance. Even Germany, the world's greatest exporter, is mainly a service economy. 

Our trade deficit is
manageable inside of the European Union with its guaranteed market of half a billion souls, but outside of the EU we will have to export more than we import in order to save our precious dollars. It was easy to be a great exporting nation just after the war when Germany, Italy and Japan were in ruins, but it's not so easy now. We will have to accept a smaller economy with a lower standard of living. 

The World Trade Organisation is under American rules. Scotch whisky will have to compete with Jim Beam and Jack Daniels. We will have to accept chlorine-washed chicken, hormone-fed beef, and genetically modified crops. And our environmental laws might not suit the American motor industry. America uses trade as a weapon of war. States perceived to be hostile, like Russia, Iran and North Korea are punished but Japan and South Korea are rewarded, Britain would have to earn her place by supporting American foreign policy.

Nation Revisited
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