News, Culture & Society

PETER HITCHENS: It doesn’t matter how you vote… the Greens always win

Vote Blue, get Green. Vote Red, get Green. Vote Yellow, get Green. Vote SNP, get Green. I wonder why they bother even having an actual Green Party.

So in yet another way, Britain is coming more and more to resemble the old East Germany. Really? Yes.

The East Berlin commissars would have applauded our frenzied desire to rip small children from the arms of their mothers and stuff them into nurseries while their parents marched off to work.

The wild plans embraced by Johnson last week will cost billions in subsidies, and so in taxes. They will endanger the power supply. They will also mean more children slaving for small change in the hellish mines of the Congo, to find the raw materials for the batteries on which this noble project relies

They would have smiled on our easy divorce, our comprehensive schools and on our crawling state broadcaster, regurgitating party propaganda and closing the airwaves to dissent.

But above all they would have recognised our fake Parliament – plenty of different parties but only one opinion.

Did you know that Communist East Germany had a Liberal Party and a nominally conservative allegedly Christian Democrat Party? They did. 

They even had general elections, at which you could vote for these fakes (voting against was trickier, and staying at home would also get you noticed).

I paid over the odds to travel abroad by train rather than plane, long before Greta Thunberg was even born. But none of this counts in my favour. Because the new Green Frenzy is a faith-based dogma, not a set of considered opinions

I paid over the odds to travel abroad by train rather than plane, long before Greta Thunberg was even born. But none of this counts in my favour. Because the new Green Frenzy is a faith-based dogma, not a set of considered opinions

But like ours, they were all the same. And like ours, they represented the elite to the people, rather than the other way round.

What does Green mean anyway? It doesn’t mean you love the planet. It means you love a slogan.

I have always been a defender of our natural heritage. I feel almost physical pain at the sight and sound of a tree being cut down. I mourned the destruction of the railways and the tyranny of the motor car which resulted. 

I have for 40 years endured the mockery of colleagues and the spite of drivers for riding a bicycle, alas for me in a Right-wing way. 

I paid over the odds to travel abroad by train rather than plane, long before Greta Thunberg was even born.

But none of this counts in my favour. Because the new Green Frenzy is a faith-based dogma, not a set of considered opinions.

As Labour leader Keir Starmer discovered in his Trotskyist 20s, a moralising, self-righteous alleged concern for the planet is the new Marxism.

It’s not a moral system. It is organised hypocrisy in which you show you are good by saying the right thing. Actions don’t matter. It’s your mind they care about.

If you’re a Hollywood star, you can fly first class and ride in a petrol-gulping car just so long as you swear allegiance to the Cult of Greta. But you may be sure that others will suffer for it, whether they like it or not.

The wild plans embraced by Johnson last week will cost billions in subsidies, and so in taxes. They will endanger the power supply. They will also mean more children slaving for small change in the hellish mines of the Congo, to find the raw materials for the batteries on which this noble project relies.

Life, you may be sure, will be poorer, darker, colder and generally glummer, again, quite a bit like East Germany. 

So it is probably a good thing that we are rapidly losing our freedom to object, that our new People’s Police get bossier every day, and most of us seem to quite enjoy being told what to do.

As Labour leader Keir Starmer discovered in his Trotskyist 20s, a moralising, self-righteous alleged concern for the planet is the new Marxism. It¿s not a moral system. It is organised hypocrisy in which you show you are good by saying the right thing

As Labour leader Keir Starmer discovered in his Trotskyist 20s, a moralising, self-righteous alleged concern for the planet is the new Marxism. It’s not a moral system. It is organised hypocrisy in which you show you are good by saying the right thing

A murky war… and a cruel sting in the tail

When the former British Army officer James Le Mesurier was found dead in an Istanbul street a year ago, many people feared foul play. Le Mesurier, by all accounts a brave and charming man, had made many sinister enemies through his involvement in the murky Syrian crisis.

Le Mesurier, by all accounts a brave and charming man, had made many sinister enemies through his involvement in the murky Syrian crisis. And now an utterly fascinating BBC Radio 4 series, Mayday, is trying to explain the affair

Le Mesurier, by all accounts a brave and charming man, had made many sinister enemies through his involvement in the murky Syrian crisis. And now an utterly fascinating BBC Radio 4 series, Mayday, is trying to explain the affair

And now an utterly fascinating BBC Radio 4 series, Mayday, is trying to explain the affair. It deals some pretty hefty blows to naive defenders of the cruel, torture-based Assad regime in Syria. I’d say the programme is pretty much on the side of Mr Le Mesurier, and of the long campaign to draw Britain into the Syrian civil war.

But can I urge caution on that? As the programme admits, the famous White Helmets, a brilliantly publicised rescue squad which Le Mesurier helped set up with lots of money from Britain and other major powers, have their problems.

What were their relations with the Islamist fanatics in the areas where they worked? And what happened to the Western money?

The BBC has carefully mentioned (among other failings) the appearance of one White Helmet in a jihadi recruitment video, and the presence of two White Helmets at an Islamist ‘execution’, ie murder (they carried away the body). It has also reported claims that the White Helmets shared a building in Aleppo with Al Qaeda sympathisers. 

I am not as reassured as the programme’s presenter seems to be by the organisation’s PR promises that these supposedly isolated incidents have been dealt with.

Then there’s the money problem. Mayday Rescue was the name of the organisation through which the cash (estimated at more than £80 million) was funnelled. There is some pretty devastating evidence of its finances being in a terrible mess. It was so bad the Dutch foreign ministry withdrew support.

Our own Foreign Office told me, when asked about this: ‘Upon being made aware of the allegations, the UK and other donors suspended further funding to Mayday Rescue and requested they commission an independent forensic investigation into the claims, which has since taken place.’ The official position is now that there were ‘gaps’ in the records (quite big ones, I think), but no evidence of fraud or misappropriation of funds.

No doubt it is best to leave Le Mesurier to rest in peace, and it is not my purpose to attack him. But I think intervention in Syria was a grave mistake, and almost bound to lead us into such swamps.

By backing fanatical Islamist forces against Assad, we took sides with a scorpion against a cobra. It was always only a question of whether we would get bitten or stung, or both.

I asked the BBC last week for viewing figures for the panel show Question Time, to see how they compared with the recent and distant past. The BBC refused to provide them.

Proof that the mask zealots can’t have it both ways 

Can a Covid virus move only one way through a mask? Or can it go both in and out? Because if it can go both ways, we now know that all this mask-wearing is an almost complete waste of time

Can a Covid virus move only one way through a mask? Or can it go both in and out? Because if it can go both ways, we now know that all this mask-wearing is an almost complete waste of time

Can a Covid virus move only one way through a mask? Or can it go both in and out? Because if it can go both ways, we now know that all this mask-wearing is an almost complete waste of time.

Barely noticed in any major media, a serious Danish trial of the effectiveness of masks finally reported its findings on Wednesday. Three major scientific journals (shame on them) had refused to publish it – one can only guess why.

The Danes did it properly. They recruited almost 5,000 people. Half wore masks, of rather better quality than the sort mainly worn in Britain. Half didn’t. 

All lived normal lives. They kept it up for a month. At the end, 1.8 per cent of mask wearers tested positive, and 2.1 per cent of the unmasked tested positive for Covid. In other words, there was almost no difference.

Everyone’s been very careful to say it didn’t measure whether wearing a mask protected others. Not directly. But I’d say that, unless masks and viruses are both one-directional, the answer is pretty clear. Yet with this kind of thin evidence for masks, our Government still threatens non-wearers with tyrannical, ruinous fines of up to £6,400.

What would they impose if they had any decent proof that the things worked? The death penalty?

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