Sunday, 18 September 2011

Clampdown - postscript

The cargo cult of popular opinion.

Johnny Marbles agreed to take part in a BBC Radio phone-in last week. Almost all of the callers were furiously angry and chided him for bullying a helpless old man and/or interrupting the sacrosanct proceedings of the mother of all parliaments. Lots of callers insisted on treating him as if he'd carried a deadly weapon rather than a foam pie (because it could have been a gun, or bomb - a whole metaphysical maze there). "The security guards should have been armed, and they should have shot you". One caller began "Now, I don't agree with the things Rupert Murdoch did, whatever they were..."

After JM had left the programme, one last caller said that throwing a foam pie into Rupert Murdoch's face was disrespectful to the family of Milly Dowler.

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Some top-class 'comment'.

Inverted commas used there to imply chuckling dismissal of the notion that there was ever such a thing as a working class. Surely they were just a myth invented by governesses to frighten children?

As Daniel Barrow observed, "It probably seems fairly obvious to those involved in the riots that they exist in a particular relation to the means of production, e.g. having to sell their labour in an open market (& getting nowhere). The fact that the media don't seem to get that seems pretty symptomatic to me."

But, yeah, correcting the rioters on their social self-construction is absolutely the right move to make right now. Everything'll flow from the use of the correct nomenclature (handed down by approved media outlets, naturally).

Stupid Tyrone, though - if only he was proper working class (respectable, unionised, and employed in a production job), he'd be out of poverty in no time. He's only got himself to blame.