Press Barons and other dictators

British justice reached its lowest ebb in the 21st century. At this moment in time there are people in prison for eating a biscuit and some who used their right to free speech on Facebook are also serving years behind bars. So is it possible for an ordinary person to use his right of freedom of speech to express his own opinion? Or is it only the rich, powerful and privileged who are allowed to say what they like on the front pages of their newspapers regardless of the consequencies? Newspaper barons pay lipservice to freedom of the people. The only freedoms that interest them are the freedoms of power and privilege that crush the people and fill their pockets with ill gotten gains.

The real murderers of Stephen Lawrence will probably never be caught, which is more than just a pity. Racism is rife on Britain’s streets and punishing the guilty is more important than satisfying someone’s hidden political agenda. As ordinary people know to their cost newspapers have more lies than truth but knowing which is which can be difficult. For example back in 1997 the Daily Mail wanted to show that Britain was not racist so a scapegoat or scapegoats would have to be found to whitewash an unpleasant truth. Finally on the 2nd February, 1997, the Mail picked on five men to name as murderers on their front page. The Mail also wrote that if the victims felt that this was wrong, they could sue Lord Rothermere’s publication! This was not a brave challenge but a cynical ploy. The Mail’s legal team knew that the five were vulnerable, not rich, were pro-white and therefore would find their reputations hard to defend, as is required in a libel case. Some had records and came from notorious criminal families so they stood no chance of fighting someone who sits in the House of Lords. Using journalistic spin the Mail would also over the next 15 years paint these victims as unsavoury white trash, a witch hunt that has never been repeated even in Murdoch’s Sun or News of the World.

Using well-paid lawyers Rothermere had that arrogant confidence that comes from inherited wealth and hand-me-down titles. If it went to court, the Mail with such legal eagles behind it would be able to undermine anything these British citizens could do, also since it would be a civil case, the Mail would only have to prove that there was a case (no matter how flimsy) to answer, which it was sure could easily be fixed. So the Mail went ahead and accused five men of being ‘Murderers’ in a front page headline. Remember they can do this to anyone that does not have wealth, power and privilege. People like Elton John or Sally Morgan can fight back but ordinary people just have to suffer in silence. Another problem was that having accused five innocent men of being murderers the Mail had prejudiced any chance of a fair trial if evidence was ever found. Any future jury would need eyeball to eyeball witnesses that could actually identify the murderer or murderers. To reach a valid verdict the judge and jury would have to hear a witness in court saying that they had seen the actual knife being driven in, a weapon which had actually killed the young black man. Showing that these men were racists would not be evidence as many people in Britain are racist but a hundred thousand people didn’t kill Stephen. Hauling members of the BNP or EDL off the street and putting them on the Mail’s front page would also be prejudicial in the extreme! Any future trial would have to have massive forensic having not a shadow of doubt attached to it and absolute positive identification. Surely only foreign countries have such show trials? Not so.

Many people felt that the gutter press had sunk to new depths with this, which was mostly to boost  circulation figures, into which other publications were making inroads. The former Master of the Rolls, Lord Donaldson accused the Mail and its editor, Paul Dacre, of contempt of court. But there were a few wealthy lawyers who supported the Mail’s hypocritical stance, perhaps they sensed a chance of easy money? Having a right-wing unpopular government at the time helped enormously as the Conservatives wanted to make it look as if they were not against the black community. The general election was only weeks away and the tories were desperate for any votes, black or white. After hesitating for days John Major finally caved in and supported the Mail – he had no option!!

The Rothermeres and their lackeys such as Paul Dacre and extremists like Melanie Phillips actively promote the capitalist chaos that we all have to exist in. They deny any responsibility, just standing on the sidelines like bankers raking in the wealth. When the rich man’s system falls apart it is the victims that are vilified by the Daily Mail. The Daily Mail has a powerful circulated voice, we have twitter and Facebook! So there is no effective way to counter newspaper terrorists. Apart from the BBC the media is owned and controlled by very rich men. Over the years they have used propaganda to enable THEIR governments to be elected and trash governments that did not praise and promote the rich man’s system. Nothing has really changed in Britain since 1066 when William and his foreigners crushed the English people – it’s been them and us ever since.


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Poetry: Worthwhile poetry is never manufactured in minutes. Outstanding poetry takes years of experience and study, which then, sometimes(!) culminates in a work of art. It is true that many if not most of the great poems written by masters of poetry would have come from a single idea or even one word. Yes, the first line would have been written down quickly but then worked on as a first draft. However, later the original would be revised several times over a period of days – and sometimes years. Dylan Thomas wished that he had had the time to go back over his poetry to revise and improve it further but he was too busy writing newer and what would turn out to be even better creations! Poetry is like any other artform, totally artificial – perhaps a better word would be synthetic. There is nothing wrong with that. Poetry does not grow naturally on trees like autumn leaves (which can evoke a very poetic vision) and without the human race on this planet would never evolve from the handful of letters and thousands of words or symbols that make up each language into a poem. It’s like going into a field day after day with a skip full of bricks and tipping them onto the grass – in a million years they will not form a house. A dictionary will never become a poem without a wordsmith concentrating with single-minded purpose on shepherding these lonely words into a concise image or flock of images. Poetry, painting, sculpture, architecture, music and the playwright’s stage are all synthetic; architecture, the theatre and orchestral works being not only fabrications but are (as someone has observed) art by committee – the architect, scriptwriter and composer depending on others to transform the original idea into a finished work. Poetry (and to a lesser extent, sculpture and painting) on the other hand is the product of one person’s imagination that has been fired up by an experience or the actions of another person. Inspiration, there is no other word for it, turns the act of creating a poem into a war, a battle with words that are sometimes the poet’s friend yet very often turn against the writer and become the enemy resulting in deep disappointment. To turn these twenty-six little soldiers of lead (harking back to the days of the hand compositor) into words that are then arranged like an army bent on only one mission is not easy. Expressing a human emotion or feeling into something that can be read by another person in a concise yet poetic form is a challenge. The difference between poetry and prose is that even poetic novels are too long to have sudden impact, whereas the poem, especially the sonnet and other short verse forms, can hit the reader’s mind like an axe. Yet some poets are so subtle that the meaning is sometimes lost; others write what appears to be simple verse, which holds complicated ideas. A poet who sometimes writes plain poems, which have complex concepts, is Robert Frost. Also his approach to poetry is intense though quite straightforward. Frost thought that the aim of good verse was to ‘break the doggerel, that is to stop the monotony of the regularity of the metrical norm. Rhythm gives metre life and energy; meter gives the rhythm shape and focus. Frost was sceptical of the vers-libristes. He felt that they talk about rhythm but have nothing to interrupt the rhythm because perhaps like Ezra Pound they try to get all the metre out of the poetry! Frost is also fiercely critical of comparing syllables with musical notes as syllables vary with the tone and the content of the poem – syllables are not of a measurable length, they do not have fixed quantity. This aside on Frost only skims the surface of what this outstanding American poet thought about his art but these brief notes give some idea of his commitment to poetry. To sum up, poets have a responsibility to the past, the present and the future. We are merely handing on Greek and Persian traditions – maybe even fragments of the ancient Hittite culture – while at the same time remaining true to the present age and being conscious of how the future will judge us. Before writing the first word of a poem it would be a nice gesture to think about the thousands and millions of writers that have gone before us. To respect them is to respect yourself and your own mind as you forge one smaller link in a very long chain.


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Hello world!

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I’ve written a database of Norse myth and this is the introduction


Myth, pre-history and history tend to merge yet the difference between a myth and an actual event is the way a particular hero performs. The action of the Iliad takes about seven weeks but the feats of Achilles in that narrative would have taken months to complete as well as needing the strength of a hundred men. So although the Iliad is based on history – the sacking of Troy – the players in this story take on superhuman roles and we become aware that the tragedy of Troy was real but leading actors have gone over the top in portraying the horror (but not the heroism) of battle and the disaster and emotions surrounding a siege. Similarly Moses, David and Joshua as well as Prometheus, Perseus and Odysseus are mythical characters in legends handed down by word of mouth and then at some time in history written down in a more permanent form. Vlad the Impaler is an historical figure yet the legend of thousands of prisoners being impaled as Vlad and his army marched through a traumatised nation have continued to grow. Impalement consisted of thrusting a long stake into the anus or vagina, through the intestines to the diaphragm muscle. The naked victim was then hoisted upward and the pole fixed in the ground. Subsequent writhing eventually forced the stake upward destroying the heart. What is impossible to believe is that Vlad and his army between battles had the time to find scores of straight branches, cut them, and then torture to death hundreds of people. However, that is the myth but reality was obviously different. Maybe some of his victims suffered this method of execution but they would have numbered dozens rather than hundreds – probably just one or two leaders would have been chosen by Vlad to be despatched in this way.

Fimbulvetr separates myth and history but did these myths shape the historical Vikings or was it the austere post ice age landscape that gave rise to the myths as well as the Northmen themselves? Like the hard glaciation itself these Scandinavian seamen were awesome and unyielding as they covered oceans and took possession of each new land – establishing colonies only after, chillingly invading, terrifying and subjugating indigenous populations. The study of legends and folklore teaches that kings, presidents and other dictators pale to insignificance against the vast backdrop of countless millennia. Religious adherents find belief in a particular god gives them a purpose and even a promise of eternal life. A mythologist also has faith but it is in the unstoppable evolution of Earth and the cosmos, an acceptance of a universe that has existed before “life” began and will still be here when all life has vanished. However, mythologists are human and think that they know what life is – in the Norse myths life exists in rock and metal as well as vegetation and animals. At the death of Balder everything weeps including stones, trees, iron, fire and birds. This is the marked difference between ancient (Pagan) beliefs and capitalist (Christian) materialism. Modern man has lost respect for metal, rock, oceans, sky and soil, poisoning the Earth on which he depends for his own life, and also destroying the habitats of countless other creatures. Sooner than it expects Homo sapiens will find Earth shrugging off this parasite that fills its own belly, and its wallets, without regard for its impoverished brethren and also uses animals, fish and birds as if they were worthless. Profit before people plumbed new and obscene depths in the last two decades of the 20th century. Putting massive individual wealth before the immense riches of Earth has signalled the end for the powerful, privileged and greedy – it will unfortunately also eventually lead to the decimation of ordinary innocent families. Can we hope that after Ragnarok there will be a rebirth of respect; a race of beings in awe of the Earth Goddess and her domain?                                                      DG 2004

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