Thursday, 8 April 2021

Kindness is political III

Kindness is political III


Kindness is small. Kindness is big. Kindness makes us human. Kindness is ancient. Kindness makes us humane. Humane is a thing. Humane is the biggest thing. I cannot be fully human if I am not humane. We use the word Humanity. "Show some Humanity!"

And yet there are those who think Humanity is the problem.  'Humanity is destroying the environment' they will say. Whereas the truth is that it is a particular culture that is destroying the environment, rather than Humanity per se. I have written about this before. The species is fine, it is the culture that is the problem.

Kindness is bigger than Gross Domestic Product growth. Kindness is more, so much more than national pride. Kindness is older than any religious creed. Kindness is more beautiful than sending a rocket to Mars. Kindness makes us human. Kindness is prehistoric. Kindness is in our genetic disposition. Our default state is trust.

Jacinda Ardern is kind. Kindness is political.

Boris Johnson is unkind. Kindness is political.  

Obama was charming. His political action was unkind. Not as unkind as the political action of some others, but only by small degree. Not much of a difference, really if you were one of the many innocent people harmed by US Foreign Policy during his 8 year stint as President and Chief of Staff. Poverty also expanded, as did the wealth of billionaires, under his 'leadership'. 

Kindness never hides behind a flag, a uniform, a monument or a temple the way patriarchy rooted power and cruelty does. Boris Johnson is unkind. Cressida Dick is unkind. Kindness is political.

Evolution and Kindness.

In terms of our long evolution as a co-operative animal, a social species, one of the key elements in the development of the social brain and all the social complexity, diversity and beauty that flows from that is the shift from the single parenting typical of most primates, to what we call alloparenting. 

That is to say that the evolution of our bigger brains dealing with more complex relationships over longer time frames is inextricable from the evolution of shared parenting, multiple bonded relationships, among hominids. Kindness again. Group kindness is a thrivivalist behaviour. One needs a much more complex brain to live well through shared mutually nurturant relationships as a social group, a social species. Kindness is evolutionary!

Some would say that, politically, kindness has the potential to be revolutionary. Jacinda Ardern is revoluntionary and not a guillotine or AK47 in sight.

Thriving Children.

For all mammals and for all primates the mother is the primary carer of her children. There are some species that share the care, to varying degrees - the majority do not. 

In all species of primate the infant stays close to the mother for extended periods of time, physically close, attached, in touch, body to body. Mammalian and primate infants are vulnerable and they need that constant care and protection while they are growing. Human infants are among the most totally vulnerable, and our vulnerability lasts for a long time. 

Mothering is expensive.

Every mother knows how much resources, effort and time is needed to adequately care for, nurture and protect a baby, an infant, a toddler and a young child. It takes the meaning of full time job into the realm of 24/7/365. How many hours are there in a week? Parenting requires all of them. 

Single parenting is so much more difficult than alloparenting. Still, single parenting is, within industrial culture,  somewhat easier than shared parenting with a partner who is abusive, negligent, distant or disinterested. If only because such partners need caring for as well, and in effect the mother is caring for two - an infant and an immature adult, or worse a dysfunctional and possibly dangerous 'partner'. Stress levels way above any normal healthy background level.

Shared child care is evolutionary economics.

Egalitarian and peasant cultures of all kinds are rooted in extended families. Industrial culture has atomised the community, and the presence of extended family care is becoming rarer. Double and Single parenting is a lot more difficult than living with an extended family to share the care

For humans, in evolutionary terms, shared parenting is the bio-logical norm. Children are cared for and nurtured by the community. In egalitarian cultures this is a very well documented dynamic. The evidence base for this is immense. Egalitarian relationships are loving relationships. The children in egalitarian communities form deep bonds with many adults, as much as with each other. The community cares for and nurtures all the children. Children form many healthy attachments.

Attachment Theory

In looking at the relationships that are formed between mother and child in the 1960s, at a time when the nuclear family was very much the majority structure in industrialised cultures, some interested scientists carried out experiments with monkeys, where, unfortunately for the subjects, they mistreated baby monkeys to varying degrees  - by separating them from the mother, and then providing a range of fake mothers in the form of a structure (wire cage, wooden body, furry body, furry body that rocked, warm furry body that rocked and so on and a feeding method, a bottle with a teat) designed to mimic the presence of a mother.

What they found was that the baby monkeys would vary in their behaviour as sociable animals, with the least mothered presenting with the most anti-social behaviours.  The less warmth with which they were raised, the more defensive their behaviour, the weaker their self regulation, the greater their aggression. These awful experiments were not accurate, in as much as animals in zoos and laboratories are not going to present behaviour that they do in the wild. They were in fact torture. Luckily these experiments were not frequent, and not repeated. 

Nonetheless, those experiments and the evidence of disruption of child-mother bonding formed the germ of the idea of that became Attachment Theory. The theory stated that the degree of  nurturance or disruption of child-mother bonding in infancy - that vulnerable stage - determined the sociability and adult behaviour of the adult to be. One aspect of the theory looked at the setting within which mothering occurs, and took note of external stressors that might impact attachment bonding. A stressed mother can undermine healthy attachment, through no personal fault of her own, simply because she has to endure stresses imposed by external events and actions of others.

Attachment Theory was lauded for a brief period, and then fell into relative obscurity, not least because some of it's proponents were suggesting that the troubles of civilisation are behavioural in origin - violence, hierarchies of power, war fare, misogyny, addiction - and have their roots in disrupted child-mother bonding. 

This was a bridge too far for the existing psychology and psychiatry industry. Such an assertion, without substantive evidence,  challenged the  establishment (and everyone else, truth be told) in ways that patriarchy minded authorities rejected, quite forcibly. It questioned their claims on certain universalities of Human Nature and The Human Condition. That was a challenge too far.

Attachment Theory 2.0

50 years on, and Attachment Theory has been subjected to and informed by a lot more detailed research. Neuroscience, endocrinology, developmental studies, bio-chemistry, trauma studies, anthropology and other scientific disciplines have gathered a lot of new evidence, using ever more precise technological developments, allowing better measurement, observation and statistical analysis. 

Science can describe with ever greater detail and intimacy the processes of brain development from within the womb, through birth and infancy, toddlerhood and onwards. Science can describe with great accuracy how experience and environmental factors have effects that are invisible, that happen beneath the skin and within the skull, yet which lead to outcomes in behaviours that are all too visible and easy to misconstrue. 

Current scientific understanding can describe the biology, the bio-chemistry of what is happening within the brain and the body during the development of the emotional self. 

https://www.developmentalscience.com/blog/2017/3/31/what-is-a-secure-attachmentand-why-doesnt-attachment-parenting-get-you-there

The Extended Family Brain

Allan Schore describes the biology of affective state self regulation within the context of the carer-brain to infant-brain relationship, and as body to body embodied minds relating to one another, as a dynamic of carer to cared-for, irrespective of gender or biological relationship.  Both brains are altered by the experience. Brains are designed to build through experience and as organs our brains are the least constrained by genetics.

“The brain is heavily influenced by genes. But from birth through young adulthood, the part of the human brain that most defines us (frontal cortex) is less a product of the genes with which you started life than of what life has thrown at you. 

Because it is the least constrained by genes and most sculpted by experience. 

This must be so, to be the supremely complex social species that we are. Ironically, it seems that the genetic program of human brain development has evolved to, as much as possible, free the frontal cortext from genes.”

Whilst there are key dynamics between every mother and her infant child, the development of healthy self regulation is modulated by all carers and the more loving carers a child has, the better it is for that child and consequently the adult the child will become. 

Extend that across a population and we can suggest a way to prevent distress emerging in future populations by nurturing the earliest relationships that extended families can provide.  Kindness in policy is indeed political.

What is now well established is that the development of affective state emotional self regulation is key to sociability and to competence in learning, and that it is, in healthy conditions, a matter of right brain maturation which is largely complete by age two.

That bears repeating - affective state self regulation is largely matured by age two, in all healthy human children. The 'terrible twos' is a cultural symptom of distress, not a biological marker.

As I understand it, this is when the infant becomes a walker, and is capable of independent exploration of the new world she or he is in, and the last thing the new explorer needs is a shortened fuse. The care and kindness that earliest empathic parenting is delivered with sets the child up for life and equips the child with affective state self regulation that is necessary for adult life.

Kindness shapes the brain

I know I am repeating myself and Sapolsky, but it bears repeating - it is absolutely critical that readers understand that this is what the evidence asserts : Robert Sapolsky writes : "“The brain is heavily influenced by genes. But from birth through young adulthood, the part of the human brain that most defines us (frontal cortex) is less a product of the genes with which you started life than of what life has thrown at you. 

Because it is the least constrained by genes and most sculpted by experience. 

This must be so, to be the supremely complex social species that we are. Ironically, it seems that the genetic program of human brain development has evolved to, as much as possible, free the frontal cortext from genes.”

― Robert M. Sapolsky, Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst

Families and culture.

In a typical human extended family, child care is shared. That is the norm for all studied egalitarian cultures. That is also the norm in most older pre-industrial sedentary cultures. In peasant families, siblings care for younger sibling;, babies and infants are held by mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles and grand parents. This care is typically loving, replete with those little kindnesses that inform life long bonds of friendship and support. 

The Nuclear Family and The Factory

In the development of the Industrial Factory and the creation of a worker culture The Protestant Calvinist Religious ideology - the work ethic - was used as a tool of social engineering, and it was deployed to reshape entire communities, to integrate the nuclear family as a universal human characteristic. Christianity does not speak of the relatives of Jesus. The model of the nuclear family suited the factory owners. 

In addition because contraception was not used, serial pregnancies were normal outcomes, infant mortality was high, and child care was shared by siblings, aunts and grandparents, and so they all lived within easy reach. This helped build resilient factory system communities out of the destruction of the older peasant communities. The men went to work, and the women collectively cared for the children and the men.

Schools were invented to indoctrinate and train future factory workers. Personal development was ignored.

Poverty was and remains a standard status for a large part of the population within inequitable hierarchy of power social systems, as is the concentration of wealth and power in a smaller class who dominate all others. The children born into either do not chose that situation. We call this accident of birth.

In the large families typical of impoverished people's child care is to a degree shared by siblings. The existence of poverty is unkind, it is a structural and cultural unkindness. It absolutely imposes chronic stress on the families of the poor. The life expectancy of the poorer is always shorter than those of the wealthier.  The impact of structural unkindness is meaningful. Thus social solidarity and kindness among impoverished people's and their families is a matter of survival and provides some of the resilience necessary for survival.

Nannies and others.

In wealthier families child care is often handed to employed nannies and tutors.  Being too busy being rich and powerful to parent, they devolve care for their children to others. Private boarding schools are an expression of class. Nannies are an expression of power. The devolved authoritarian who must deliver the well rounded adolescent who will inherit the dynastic mantle.

In wealthy industrialised countries, where the nuclear family is common, where the tradition of men as bread winners rooted is in the factory system, the bulk of the work of caring falls upon the mother - this is true even in households where both parents are workers earning a wage. In those households, child care is farmed out. And we see the outcome of that in the greater incidence of anxiety and distress among every class within industrialised cultures. A population that is overworked, underpaid, that is working to build economies and working to service debt and neglecting the familial nurturing space is profoundly impacted.  Kindness needs people, kindness needs time and space. Kindness is large brained. Unkindness is small minded.

Kindness is political. 

Right now, as the pandemic of SARSCOV2 and it's disease CODIV19 rolls out across the Earth's countries,  we are seeing the impact of lack of kindness across the developed world, were some nations have rejected zero community transmission strategies for dealing with an epidemic, with intolerable human costs and associated economic costs, all of which is met with continued denial of shared responsibility. That is unkind. That is an institutionalised lack of kindness at scale.

Other countries have adopted zero community transmission, and have avoided all the costs and harms, and that represents a form of institutional kindness. Indeed, Jacinda Ardern is explicit about this, and has been since before her first election into office as New Zealand's Prime Minister.

Kindness is political. If we want a healthier future for all our children, and for all their children, then we had better start acting with political kindness in mind at every part of our culture. The bullying is lethal, toxic nonsense and in evolutionary terms utterly irrational. We must bring it to an end, with kindness as our primary ethic.




Kindest regards 

Corneilius 

"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Saturday, 3 April 2021

Sexual Abuse, Power and Men - young girls, women, grandmothers: generations of affliction and endurance, the time for change is now.


I have been writing about abuse behaviour dynamics for two decades, from the perspective of a Survivor, a child, a young boy and a teen routinely abused by adults in boarding schools, an adult suffering from and enduring cPTSD, understanding that my story is just one of millions upon millions of cases, looking at the culture within which all that happened. First let me start by making it really clear where I am coming from. I feel really, really sick to my core that there is so much abuse, violence, corruption on-going in within this culture. That so much of it is for profit makes matters ever worse. As a man, a male, a person and a parent I am appalled at the willingness of governments, corporations and others to extract power and profit at the expense of so many others. War, Air Pollution, Environmental Degradations, Externalised Costs, Imposed Poverty and concentration of wealth as power to dominate are all costs we all are forced to bear - and they are all wholly avoidable. There is nothing inevitable about these problems. Together the speak to a culture that is problematic, and the need for a holistic view to address the problems at their very root. I have addressed that elsewhere in a number of postings. For now let's talk about sex. When it comes to sexuality and power, I am horrified by the status quo. I am a human being with an acute sense of sexuality, and as I see it, as I experience sexuality to introduce or inject power into such an intimate space, to taint pleasure with power in any way is an abomination, akin to child beating.

Any abuse of power to sexually harass another - irrespective of gender- is a dehumanised behaviour, and it is a dehumanising behaviour. Anyone who says that there's no problem at the cultural level regarding sexual abuse is in denial. Every woman I know has multiple stories to tell of personal experience of sexual harassment, misogyny. There are more survivors dealing with the aftermath of sexual abuse than there are abusers facing the consequences in terms of confronting them with their behaviour, justice and incarceration and, by a vast margin. The majority of abusers walk free. Society is failing the survivors, and is failing in prevention. The abusers thrive as a result.

The Guardian headline and report is inadequate. 'Finally'? School girls and young women have been voicing their concerns for decades and decades. When one submits "sexual harassment in schools" as a google scholar search term, it brings up 204,000 plus articles and papers in half a second. It's not like the subject is an unknown area. It is remarkably well studied. From a 1994 paper 'Walking Through Walls' J Larkin - Gender and Education, 1994 - Taylor & Francis "For most females, crude language and other forms of sexually harassing behaviour are part of the fabric of our daily lives. To date, however, our focus on sexual harassment has been limited primarily to the experiences of adult women in academic and work place settings. What has not been explored is the prevalence of sexual harassment in schools and the way it interferes with young women's education.

Equal opportunity programmes are of limited use if, for example, we urge female students into traditional male courses but we neglect to consider the hostile climate they encounter there. In this study I explored young women's experiences of sexual harassment in the setting lauded as their gateway to opportunity: school. 

Based on their testimonies I make recommendations for educators who are committed to making high school a more equitable place for female students." 

A search on JSTOR using the term ""sexual harassment" brings up 29,085 results. Papers on this subject date from the 1970s. Women and their advocates have been speaking out for many decades. A lot of study has been carried out on this. 

The first American Rape Crisis Centers were formed in several states throughout the USA in the early 1970s, largely by women associated with the 
second-wave feminist movement. Central to second-wave feminism was the practice of consciousness raising, which allowed groups of women to speak openly about their experiences with sexual violence and the shortcomings of law enforcement, health care providers, and the criminal justice system to effectively and constructively respond to survivors.

In every country that has efficient data gathering and statistics, we see many, many sexual crimes perpetrated against women, men and children. The majority of the perpetrators are men. The majority of those victimised are women and children, and we know too that some women also abuse men and children, that there are some women who participate in the abuse with men, and on their own. This is a culture wide issue.  A culture that harbours so much abuse.

#metoo

The phrase "Me Too" was initially used in this context on social media in 2006, on Myspace, by sexual harassment survivor and activist Tarana Burke. Since then there have been successive waves of #metoo attention. The waves pass, the behaviour does not change. The systems of Education, health, policing and justice do not change substantively. Why? Here's the thing - I know that the culture I was born into is rooted, historically, psychologically and materially in hierarchies of violence and power, patriarchy and property. Women as property.  I did not create this culture, and I do not wish to perpetuate it. At all. The idea of perpetuating this pre-existing culture of hierarchy, power and violence appals me to my very core.

The '
stronger' prey upon the vulnerable. 

I use the parentheses because as I see things, to leverage power over another human being for personal gain is not a marker of strength of character - to abuse leveraged power of any kind is in fact a weakness of character. It is a dehumanised thing to dehumanise another.

It is also a matter of self regulating one's behaviour, or not. There is interesting research that indicates that stressy cultures undermine healthy self regulation at the earliest ages - the terrible twos is not a biological episode, it is a chronic stress or trauma episode.

If in any given culture the situation of motherhood is subjected to multiple external stressors, then what flows from that is disruption and distortion of key experiential and learning dynamics. Across a population that can lead to a variation in self regulation capabilities.

The kind of people who engage in leveraging power over others clearly lack that ability - healthy self regulation of affective states -  or it may be that they choose to neglect it. Either way they are damaged, dysfunctional, distorted. Men who claim the 'urge' overtook them are saying they lack self regulation skills. They are damaged. They need help. Where any person, many or woman, has caused harm, he or she has chosen to act and for that, and the outcome, must be held accountable. At the same time, we now that patterns of reaction, of trigger and reaction operate faster than the mind can think. Some people are out of control.

Out of Control controlling behavioural characterist
ics.

Those who dominate and operate institutional power systems for personal gain lack the moral strength of mature healthy adults. To exploit others is both immature and inhumane. To rationalise abuse of power as if it were a 'natural' evolutionary alpha male behaviour is projection. It's an example of non-thinking. 
This society, this culture, this power system and its institutions are clearly not listening. The News Media is reporting, but it is not really listening. Survivors voices and insights are rarely given the space they deserve. Governments and Education Authorities are not listening carefully enough. Religions are not mute, they are not listening for or hearing the cries of women.

Men (I am a man) are not listening, are we? We are not hearing and we are not understanding the fullness of this story. We are downplaying the pain all around us by allowing 'not all men' to gain traction in ways that distract from the hearing that is necessary. My response to 'not all men' is "we know this! So shhssssh, listen, try to hear and understand what the women are trying to communicate!" Distraction Some people will point at women whose behaviour plays into or enables misogynistic behaviour and say 'it's not only men' - look at those women!' They will also point out that women are abusers too. Which is deliberately missing the point. The point is that no girl or woman should ever need to learn that set of behaviours as a way of coping with or surviving life long misogyny and sexism. At least not within a healthy culture. This is not a healthy culture, is it?

The point is that no boy or man should ever need to learn that set of behaviours as a way of being, or of coping with or surviving within a healthy culture. For these reasons, this is a problem of men, and the behaviour that we (I write as a man) allow our peers to get away with inevitably becomes a problem for women, children and all vulnerable people. Misogyny is political. Men as activists I get that this is challenging, and I am not seeking to scapegoat or blame. It is confronting to confront anyone who is bullying another person. It is confronting to challenge 'alpha male behaviour' that men are led to adopt and internalise as 'normal red blooded', competitive, hierarchic archetypes. It's scary.
It is a different kind of scary to that of a woman who feels she must be on guard amongst most men. Throughout her life. The 'democracy of fear'. Men, healthy, decent, morally clear men need to become the drivers of confronting sexual assault of women. Men, healthy, decent, morally clear men need to become the drivers of confronting alpha male violence in general. Speaking truthfully. In June 2020, Soma Sara the founder of Everyone's Invited, began sharing her personal experience of rape culture via Instagram. She wanted to speak the truth, and to create a space for truth to be spoken. Immediately, she received a number of messages from not only those who felt that her experiences strongly resonated with their own, but also those who detailed their own stories of misogyny, harassment, abuse and assault. Within a week she received and shared over 300 anonymous responses, reaching over 10,000 people. She was intent on creating a space where women felt safe enough to speak, where they were assured they would be heard and understood - they shared the same experience, after all. 2021

The disappearance, abduction and murder of Sarah Everard, in early March 2021 in London followed by the discovery that her murderer was a serving police officer who had committed a sexual offence just days before he assaulted and kill Sarah Everard, became a major news story. It led to a surge of expressions of grief, rage and anger shared by many, many women. It led to a public campaign to hold Vigils for Sarah, organised by women's group, Reclaim These Streets, as a collective mark of respect and a dedication to confronting the issue of women's safety. Since then Everyone's Invited has received thousands of testimonies from women and young girls.

It was as if yet another flood gate was opened. By the time this too became a news story, (see the image at the top of this article) more than 11,000 people had submitted testimonies to EI. No individuals were identified, and some schools were. Some News media reports focused on a few fee paying schools identified in these testimonies, although EI says that totality of testimonies received covers all kinds of schools and universities, private and state funded. This behaviour - sexual harassment, assault and a culture of misogyny - is happening in every setting where boys and girls, men and women share a common space. Soma Sara points out that some of the testimonies are from women writing as grand parents who themselves were subjected to such behaviour, who saw their daughters and then their grand daughters endure it too. The problem is multi-generational. My position is this is a cultural problem larger than a subculture called 'rape culture': it is a problem of the larger culture and it is for the larger culture to confront, honestly. EI is seeking to encourage a non-judgemental open and honest discussion and bring to public awareness the scope and nature of misogynistic sexual harassment in order to generate positive moves across the main culture - their approach is not about crime and punishment, naming and shaming as much as it is about achieving behavioural change. Prevention is key here. Punishment is always too late for those who have been harmed punishment of offenders does not undo that harm caused.

Can we get to a place where no more women are being harassed and sexually assaulted? - That is the question they are posing. Meaningful and lasting change can only be achieved through honesty, through recognising the problem of sexual violence, through understanding the many ways in which misogyny manifests, through understanding it's roots in wider culture and through direct action amongst men and women of all ages, in schools and universities, at home and elsewhere to confront, challenge, reduce and in due course eliminate this behavioural dynamic of sexualised abuse of power from all our lives. It is not healthy, it is not 'natural' and it must cease. Education EI believes this is a matter for education, education, education. A good education opens both mind and heart, and develops the focused mind informed by a strengthened heart. A good education is a process of discovery and learning. A good education is not indoctrination.
Education through conversation between young boys as peers and young men as peers talking to each other. Education by parents, by schools, by universities, news media and all other relevant layers of society participating in shifting the cultural behavioural values away from leveraging power and control towards participation and co-operation.

The children of the 21st Century cry out for a humanising ethic, for real social material change to end this dynamic behaviour of abuse.

It is not a pleasant state to be an abusive person. Everyone involved in the sexual abuse dynamic suffers. Everyone is dehumanised by this behaviour. To be the kind of person that sexually harasses another is a dehumanised state of being. It's not good. This is not being judgemental. It is being factual.

There is a profound compassion in the ethical stance of Everyone's Invited.
Here Soma Sara speaks on the issue with a reporter from the London Standard.



Power

In order to understand the role of power in sexual harassment, we do need to consider the level of power, the sources of power, the context of the harassing situation, and the reactions of those subjected to sexual harassment and to what extent their relative power position in society determines what outcomes are deemed possible, what actions are deemed viable, what outcomes are delivered.

Does lack of power influence a persons choices to report and prosecute cases of bullying, sexual harassment or rape?

When some media claimed that the Rotherham Grooming Gang was able to escape investigation due to fears that such an investigation might appear racist, was that the case? Or was it that in general, the witness testimony of the groomed and the vulnerable, the distressed and the broken is treated with less respect and consideration than it should be, across under resourced, under trained, under staffed police forces nationally?  

The victimised young girls are way down the power ladder, at the very bottom. Those young girls were, and are, in practical terms totally powerless. It was not concerns about Race that dismissed their their need. They were deemed not important enough to warrant the kind of attention they needed. They were considered unworthy. 

Narrative, Optics, Stories

Who turned what should have been a story about criminal organised child abuse as a cultural problem of England, into a story about Race, Immigration and Nativism?

Who did not immediately rebut that false narrative of distraction with available evidence that shows the the vast majority of 'grooming gangs' exploiting minors for sexual abuse are Caucasian, that indeed the prevalence of such abuse reflects the demographic realities?  How could such an obvious misrepresentation have stood in the news media for so long, unchallenged?

What did that do for the girls who were victimised? Who was thinking of those young people in all of this? How much more powerless were these young women rendered by this misrepresentation? Media was talking about Race and not about the lives of these young girls. 

The truth is that criminal grooming is common, far too common, across this society. It other words it is a cultural or societal behavioural problem at every level of this culture, such that it is almost characteristic. we cannot afford to look away from this.

Who has the power to exercise such systemic reluctance to address this problem honestly, and why would they do that? 

Power, Protest and Abuse

Power and the right to protest were yet again highlighted in the statements, directions and interactions of Priti Patel, Cressida Dick, The London Metropolitan Police and the Reclaim These Streets women's group who wanted to host a vigil on Clapham Common for Sarah Everard - as I already mentioned - a young woman abducted and murdered by a serving police officer in March, in London.  

In truth the fact that the man was a police officer is besides the point - sexual predators and murderers abide in every profession. That said, the tragic and catastrophic irony of a women's safety put at risk by a man paid to 'protect the peace' is inescapable. It certainly led to more concern and focus among women aware already that the justice system is not very good at delivering justice in regards to sexual harassment and rape cases.

Therefore a public vigil, an act of mourning, grief and respect, made a lot of sense and that is what RTS called for, as representatives of women's voice, as a public ritual and a demand for justice.

This includes the voice of men too, all those men who are listening to and hearing the women, who understand the cultural dynamic, who also demand we approach this matter with justice and prevention in mind.

Official Stance is defensive

"Reclaim These Streets is organised by a group of women who wanted to channel the collective grief, outrage and sadness in our community over the events of the past week. Our plan was to hold a short gathering on Clapham Common, centred around a minute of silence to remember Sarah Everard and all women lost to violence. In light of the lack of constructive engagement from the Metropolitan Police, we were forced to cancel this event."

That the official police response to the desire of the RTS women to hold a vigil was oppositional is a measure of an institutional inability to hear, and an unwillingness to listen to and empathise with women's sense of this that speaks to their insecurity as being understandable. The police have done nothing to secure women's concerns. Quite the opposite.

The High Court Judges asserted that COVID19 legislation could not be used to ban protest, even as the Police tried to misuse the legislation. The police withdrew from the court case to avoid a ruling forcing them to accept the right of RTS to protest thus legally placing the Police in a position where they had to facilitate the vigil. 

Following on from the court case, the Police denied support for the vigil, because they could not ban it. 

They chose to not facilitate a covid secure vigil, out of spite, and following the orders of the Home Secretary.

The Police asked RTS to use all their publicity channels to call off the vigil. RTS did so.

RTS informed the police that they could not prevent people from gathering informally. The police clearly understood this. 

Priti Patel as Home Secretary,  a coward and a bully.

Priti Patel ordered the Police to break up the informal vigil, partly on the basis that she promised the Police she would deliver a public briefing instructing the public not to attend an informal vigil, to give the police the cover to take action to break-up the vigil. She did not do that, and left the order in place. People gathered, in much larger numbers than would have had the police worked with RTS.

I call Priti Patel a coward because she did not follow through with her promise, and because  she refused to acknowledge her own bad behaviour,  an act of personal cowardice which led to a £340,000 out of court settlement. She used tax payers funds to save face, in a very dehumanised manner. Not being able to put your hand up, when you have done wrong, is moral cowardice, it is the triumph of a damaged, abusive ego. It is a sign of weakness, not of strength.

A Respectful Vigil

The vigil was very well self organised, respectful, disciplined. The women gathered expresses their grief, their anger and sorrow, their outrage. The women spoke of the need for justice, the need for change. Candles, flowers, prayers, songs, silences. Women holding space for public emotion, public feeling, public solidarity when in the middle of an epidemic we are all more isolated, de-publicised than ever. A precious moment in time.

The Police waited until darkness had fallen, and then removed some of the vigil holders from the bandstand where some women were speaking from - using 'reasonable force' and thus providing a media story that did them no favours at all.

The response of the women at the vigil was disciplined. A riot did not break out. Police violence was not meet with escalation. The women maintained their dignity as indignity was laid upon them. The women showed true strength. They stood their ground, and stood as witnesses to the women who were being forcibly removed.

All of this, when one of their own, a serving officer, had abducted and murdered an innocent woman, having previously flashed at a female employee in late February. 

The insensitivity is breath taking.

Power and the right to protest were also at the heart of the Bristol sit-down protests against the Crime and Policing Bill that is going through Parliament, a proposed legislation that criminalises protests of single individuals, that uses vague noise and nuisance clauses to give police the discretion to arrest and charge protesters on whim, a piece of legislation that criminalises sleeping in a vehicle over night which is aimed at Traveller folk,  a bill that is acknowledged to be a direct attempt to pre-empt protest against the policies of a Climate and Environmentally reckless Government, and pushing this through in the midst of an epidemic that the same government is deliberately mismanaging with lethal consequences.

Power and honesty (the lack of it) were also highlighted by the release this week of the Sewel Report on Racism in England which claimed there is no evidence of institutional Racism in England, and that where there is Racism prevalent in the population. The report claimed that other factors, such as economic deprivation, family breakdown and geography were more important factors in discrimination as it occurs in England. This is gaslighting - this is trying to convince us that the evidence of our own experience, what we have seen with our own eyes, is not real.

Rape Culture is a dynamic within a larger culture of abuse of power, gross dishonesty, imposed hierarchy, state violence, patriarchy, misogyny, maintained through political grooming and manipulative persuasion. I think it is not possible to separate the two themes.

Power, Honesty, Justice

Everyone's Invited and #metoo, and the thousands of organisations of women globally are asking us all to do the right thing. The women who are speaking out, who are speaking truth to power, are asking us to be honest about this, to do the right thing. The school girls who are 'finally finding their voices' are asking us all to do the right thing. Stop it. It's not complicated. You do have the power to stop this behaviour. Just do it.

Honesty is speaking truth to power, justice is power changing as a result.

I think that unless the two meet, and are reconciled, then we will be caught in the crossfire of what I can only describe as a toxic cult. 

Just do it

I think that social change can be achieved when the majority of the population are united in understanding, action and solidarity to confront, challenge and dismantle these behavioural structures and dynamics, the systems and methods of maintaining power and control. Sexual harassment and abuse is all about power and control. It is not about sexuality.

I think that means we must understand those structures accurately.

I think that means we must understand what we have internalised as values given to us by those structures.

I think that means we must understand how the structures influence so many people and thus enable the behavioural dynamic of control to mitigate and ultimately ignore the voices of women who speak out.

I think that  means we must find ways to build bridges of human understanding across our different groups, identities, beliefs and positions so that  those internalised values no longer impede us. 

I think that at the very least just being consistently honest, decent, kind, loving humane beings is enough of a challenge under the current circumstances, and worthy in its own right. That's where we start with this.

From there, activism can flow.

That is what Everyone's Invited presents. An end to the war, a start to and continuation of the conversation that heals the behaviour. That is what #metoo really means.

That is what Soma Sara and many others represent.

We have had enough, already.

I think.








Kindest regards 
 
Corneilius 

"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Late Elizabethan Holocausts


How can wealth persuade poverty to use its political power to keep wealth in power? Here lies the whole art of Conservative politics in the twentieth century.” ~ Aneurin Bevan
One way of understanding history is to seek out the stories of those most harmed by the attitudes, behaviour and actions of those who hold and exercise the most social material power. The lives of the most vulnerable are meaningful in that they reveal so much about the attitudes of the powerful. "
I argued then that the study of psychological trauma is an inherently political enterprise because it calls attention to the experience of oppressed people. I predicted that our field would continue to be beset by controversy, no matter how solid its empirical foundation, because the same historical forces that in the past have consigned major discoveries to oblivion continue to operate in the world. I argued, finally, that only an ongoing connection with a global political movement for human rights could ultimately sustain our ability to speak about unspeakable things." ~ Judith Herman in Trauma and Recovery
The narrative of historical celebrity is by definition and intent a serial hagiography. Undue reverence to those who officiate the violent hierarchies rides roughshod over compassion, empathy and genuine concern for the lived experience - the lives of those who endure the worst outcomes of the decisions of the powerful who benefit most from the hierarchy systems are more footnote than headline.


Late Victorian Holocausts (follow the link)


Late Elizabethan Holocausts. (see below)


I want to make it very, very clear that I do not hold either of these Queens personally liable, culpable or responsible for any of the harms caused by the English Establishment during their tenures as Queen -as the Crown in person - they are persons trapped by birth and circumstance more than anything else. The accident of birth is as it is. This is in part about the Monarchy as a device exploited by the Establishment which dates back to The Restoration. The Establishment are the Oligarchy. The descendants and inheritors of the Barons, The Merchants, the Colonists and the Industrialists,

Since 1960s the English Government has participated in a range of actions that have caused immense harm to entire populations, actions that were entirely avoidable and thus deliberately chosen.  Aden was abandoned in 1967. One could go back earlier in the historical record and include the Colonial abuses across Africa, India and elsewhere in the 19th Century. Apartheid in South Africa  from 1948 onwards was wholly supported by the English Establishment.  The brutal suppression of Mau Mau political activism in Kenya in the 1950s.

Let me just include these, for now, as pre-cursors to the what I will call The Late Elizabethan Era.

Northern Ireland, 1968, where the oppression of civil rights marches degenerated into a faux Civil War in which the English State colluded with violent militia, that lasted for 30 years.

The destruction of the Trade Union movement, during the 1970s, and the offshoring of the bulk of English manufacturing jobs to gouge greater profits through production with cheap labour, which devastated communities in Wales, the midlands and the North, deliberately impoverishing millions of British citizens. Deprivation visited upon millions of English citizens by the English Establishment. 

The Thatcher Government provided ample support to Iraq in the Iraq-Iran War, 1980 - 1988. That support certainly prolonged that war.

The Gulf War, in 1991 to repel the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait (itself a miscalculation by the US Ally, Hussein) and the decade of bombing with Depleted Uranium munitions, in order to maintain a 'no fly zone', which when combined with the destruction of civil infrastructure and the embargo of foods and medicines imposed by the US and UK let to the early deaths of 500,000 children.

The Invasion of Afghanistan,  in 2002 and all that ensued - 157,000 violent deaths, more maimings, displacement of people, more trauma and poverty.

The Invasion of Iraq, 2003 and all that followed as a consequence - 600,000 deaths, more maimings, displacement of people, more trauma and poverty.

Support for illegal Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine, where we know that 263,000 Palestinian people have been displaced.

Support for Israeli War actions against Gaza, 6,000 deaths, where due to embargos and bombing of civil infrastructure, 1 million are forced to live abject poverty, and the UN deems it an act of collective punishment.

Austerity, 2010  which followed on from bailing out fraudulent mortgage selling and insurance practices which caused crashes in banking, for which no bankers were indicted. Austerity built on lies, which led to increased poverty across England, and the excess deaths of 150,000 disabled, vulnerable and low income people. The rich were given socialism, the poor were punished.

The destruction of Libya, 2011 - 2014, a functioning Civil state, reduced to rubble, which led to it being split and controlled by competing violent militia, where the rule of Law vanished and the rule of the wat lord still thrives.

The funding of violent militia in a proxy war against the Syrian State, 2011 - 2021 which has displaced millions, destroyed cities, towns and villages, caused immense trauma and poverty, where now food shortages exacerbated by trade sanctions are creating the possibility of famine, in the midst of a global pandemic.

The military and political support for the Saudi war against Yemen, 2015 - 2021, where 5 million people are facing famine, on top of all the associated harms of war. UK sells warplanes and munitions, and the ancillary staff to operate a fleet of aircraft to bomb peasants.

And in the last year:

The deliberate mismanagement of the covid19 epidemic locally,  140,000 deaths, 300,000 long covid cases, massive economic damage to working folks livelihoods, massive damage to small and medium businesses, tourism, live entertainment industries.

The policy that has exacerbated the pandemic globally, via the spread of variants that emerged within the UK and were spread due to keeping borders open, airports active, for non-essential travel.

These are all actions of the English Government that have caused millions of deaths, millions of people have been forced to flee, to be 'displaced', millions of people have been traumatised and these actions by the English Government have increased poverty and inequity across all nations afflicted.

At the same time, the English Establishment has increased it's global wealth and increased it's own power.

Late Elizabethan Holocausts. I didn't mention Brexit, because, as of this moment it is not clear that it will cause death and mayhem at anything like the scale all these other actions have caused. But there is no doubt that it will. Brexit is a move against climate action.

People cry that the Conservatives are most foul. 

They are wrong.  It's not just the Conservative and Unionist Party, the rot is wider than that.

The English speaking global Oligarchy Establishment is dominant in all political parties in England, and America, and Australia and Canada - and they are a venal, brutish clan short on humanity, long on greed and the desire for more power. Brexit was their operation to 'take back control' from a humanist Europe that is starting to regulate extractive industries, off shore banking, tax evasion, air and water pollution, environmental degradation and other abusive industrial practices that are the source of the wealth of the Global English speaking Establishment.

That is a large part of why Scotland is seeking independence.

Boris Johnson's veil slipped when he claimed yesterday that “The reason we have the vaccine success is because of capitalism, because of greed my friends.”

This resonates with his speech in Greenwich, February 3rd 2020 which I detail in a recent blog posting.

The gaming of the epidemic as an exercise in profit gouging - £37 billion budget for a process to suppress transmission of the virus that is designed to fail at every turn, whilst pretending to help.  £57 billion wasted on contracts for PPE and other healthcare equipment, which ignored existing suppliers within the UK and handed contracts to small companies with no prior experience - creating hundreds of newly minted millionaires who raked off commissions at average 10%.   The filler accounting of the abuses of power are greater than the scope of this article.

This is Capitalism as a bullying dynamic, where the powerful exploit emerging vulnerabilities across a population and cause harm to that population whilst gaslighting that population through public briefing, news media co-ordination and online political conspiracy theory grooming dominance.

The English people need to seek independence from this Establishment, to save further lives and prevent further harms - indeed, the English people needed to do that back in 2003, when it was obvious that a War of Aggression was being initiated and prosecuted using tax payers funds. When the English grass roots failed to indict Tony Blair, a proven liar and War criminal,  they opened the flood gates to where we are today.

Queen Elizabeth is on the Throne, binding the nation. She is a person trapped by birth circumstances.  None of this is her fault. Her position is exploited by the English Establishment. Flags are waved, and people die.

Late Elizabethan Holocausts.

Now you know why.

Save the Queen, eject the Establishment, the English speaking global extractive oligarchy.


Kindest regards 

Corneilius 

"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Monday, 22 March 2021

Rejecting Zero Community Transmission Strategy is causing Irrational Economic and Health Harms

"In non zero community transmission strategy States the COVID19 policy choice is a false position between the health of the people and health of the economy. They do not say this, yet that is what it means to not pursue ZCT. It is, of course, a false dichotomy. A good policy protects both. 23% of global population and their economies are currently being protected by ZCT. Bad policy harms both. Just look at the deaths and economic harms in the differing countries. Go on. Compare Vietnam or New Zealand's outcomes with USA or England's outcomes. Use yer google and compare the outcomes."




A global pandemic demands a global coherent response to minimise harms, no question.


Compare New Zealand's Zero Community Transmission strategy with UK Herd Immunity slow spread tactical approach that has become a war of attrition that the most vulnerable lose.

1. 1.8 billion people (23% of global population) and their economies being protected by Governments and populations deploying proven Zero Community Transmission strategies right now across East Asia and Oceania, Europe, South America and elsewhere. Stopping the spread of the virus is possible and it works. It could be a global strategy to avoid causing vast harms.  It should be the global strategy. Stopping the Spread is spreading the Love.

2. The English Government have rejected Zero Community Transmission strategy from the outset. They have rejected Science and Epidemiology best practice out of hand. They cited 'data modelling' and 'behavioural science' as the basis for their policy choice. The never cite epidemiology or virology as the basis of their policy choices.

3. The English Government deliberately allowed the virus to be imported and to be  spread in January, February and March and beyond in 2020. They refused to quarantine the borders. They had chosen a policy of allowing 'natural herd immunity' to take it's course. They denied this, even as on multiple occasions they and their chosen advisors urged Herd Immunity as the only resolution to the epidemic. Of course publicly they disavowed that policy, but the effects of policy choice has led to spread of the virus, time and time again. Slowing the spread is a herd immunity strategy. Stopping the spread would be an non-herd immunity policy.

4. The English Government scaled down NHS contact trace in February, March 2020 rather than scale it up. They deliberately allowed transmission of the virus to run out of control by claiming it was too late to stop the spread.

5. The English Government ignored WHO guidance and East Asian experience. 

6. The English Government bragged about this position. British  Exceptionalism.

7. Here is Johnson bragging about this position February 3rd 2020 

https://youtu.be/baWbWpOtJnc?t=536


Here are his words, read them, understand them.

"And in that context, we are starting to hear some bizarre autarkic rhetoric, when barriers are going up, and when there is a risk that new diseases such as coronavirus will trigger a panic

8. and a desire for market segregation that go beyond what is medically rational to the point of doing real and unnecessary economic damage..."

9. Here is the real and unnecessary economic damage the government's deliberate policy have caused

a. 130,000 and more HORRIFIC painful frightening deaths.
b. 300,000 and more Long Covid cases. 
c. Hundreds of thousands of of acute health care issues set aside as hospitals are repeatedly swamped by COVID19.
d. 75,000 pub jobs lost.
e. Live Entertainment Industry crushed, 170,000 jobs lost
f. Tourism crushed.
g. Hundreds of thousands of people in rent arrears, at risk of losing their homes.
h. 3 million self employed small business people excluded from support. 
i. Immense psychological stress.
j. Immense economic damage. 
k. GDP way down,

10. "beyond what is medically rational to the point of doing real and unnecessary economic damage"

All of this is absolutely irrational damage to the health of population, it is irrational damage to the people's economy and all of it was 100% avoidable. No question. and so let us look at the bragging - 

11. "then at that moment Humanity needs some government somewhere that is willing at least to make the case powerfully for freedom of exchange, some country ready to take off its Clark Kent spectacles and leap into the phone booth "

Johnson claims Humanity, the Global Population, needs a brave government like the UK Government! Blatantly not the case then, and certainty on that now.

12.  "and emerge with its cloak flowing as the supercharged champion, of the right of the populations of the earth to buy and sell freely among each other. And here in Greenwich in the first week of February 2020, I can tell you in all humility that the UK is ready for that role."

Humility is something alien to Boris Johnson and indeed alien to the English Government as an international State.
 
13. "We are ready for the great multi-dimensional game of chess in which we engage in more than one negotiation at once and we are limbering up to use nerves and muscles and instincts that this country has not had to use for half a century."

The Game of Chess - an institutional anti-human attribution that speaks of people as pawns, that speaks to Power rather than Humanity.

14. "Limbering up" : contact tracing FAIL, PPE procurement FAIL, Testing FAIL, Quarantine FAIL, Isolation Treatment FAIL, Care Homes FAIL


15. "Use Nerves" : blustering, hand shaking, pretending to care, clapping for heroes, eat out to spread it about, bullying teachers, offering to support school students with laptops and broadband and not delivering, bullying parents, making public claims they will 'beat' the virus. 

16. "And muscles" : gaslighting, misleading, lying, bullying and ignoring the evidence. co-ordinated misinformation and slander campaigns with News Media and on line political grooming operations. 

17. "And Instincts" : cronyism, blanking English suppliers of PPE and other equipment out to pass contracts (and cash) to friends who had no prior experience in such supply business, £250,000 on personal flat redecoration using crowdfunding to mask irregular donations, whilst prevaricating on school meals, refusing to offer immediate support for quarantine and isolation treatment.

Owen Jones TV : who is making a lot of money and profit out of the pandemic?

18. And there was no need for any of this. And Johnson claimed that Humanity needed his policy stance!

Well when it comes to the realities right now 23% of global population are protected by zero community transmission strategy and we in the UK could be getting that protection too. Humanity needs a global zero community transmission strategy.

http://Zerocovid.uk - UK web portal for zero community transmission support - check it out, get informed.

1.8 billion people and their economies being protected by zero community transmission strategy right now across East Asia and Oceania.

THAT IS EVIDENCE THAT CANNOT BE DENIED

19.  Thus Johnson lied in Parliament, when he said 'there is, therefore no credible route to a Zerocovid Britain, or indeed a Zerocovid World'.



20. Parliamentary privilege allows Johnson to pass that lie, and the co-ordination with Oligarchy owned News Mefia enables that lie, and so Johnson and the UK Government dismissed Zero Community Transmission strategy as 'impossible' and 'impractical' without ANY rational discussion of the strategy.

Then Johnson brazenly cites the harms caused by his policy when he says "we cannot persist indefinitely with restrictions that debilitate our economy, our physical and mental well being and the life chances of our children and that is why it is so crucial that this roadmap should be cautious but also irreversible." to push for worsening policy options of re-opening schools before they are safe, which is guaranteed to initiate a surge in community transmission. The first indications of that surge is the plateau of new cases of disease and deaths, and the rise in infections recorded by testing.

21. Johnson therefore dismissed the evidence out of hand without discussing any of it. Because he knows that if he opened that discussion, the position he and the Government have taken would collapse. That he uses his Parliamentary privilege to do so is bullying.

22. The harms I have cited were all avoidable. The position of the UK Gpvernment and various groups and lobbies and other agencies who are citing the harms caused by deliberate bad management to argue for worse management rather than better management is untenable.

23. Here's a short interview with an Australian doctor recounting their recent two cases, how they traced all contacts, quarantined each and every one of them and have suppressed the spread, with  some insight as to why they jump on every case - how one person can spread to 30, then to 150 and beyond really quite rapidly.



24. Australia's federal Government, ruled by The Liberal Party, wanted to reject zero community transmission strategy at the outset, back in 2020 and all the Australian State Governments said no. They all met up and agreed to follow zero community transmission strategies and to work together, using different strategies as they needed,  and they told the Federal Government which is ruled by The Liberal Party that they were implementing zero community spread strategy and they suggested very strongly that the Federal Government toe the line or else. The Murdoch press and broadcast tried to support the Liberal Party and keep the economy open, and they failed. The State Governments duty of care to the people prevailed.

25. Recent elections in Western Australia have decimated the ruling Liberal Parties candidates, as the population supported the ZCT promoting parties. It is likely to repeat across Australia in future elections. ZCT works. As it should.

26. In England there is a Government and News Mefia Taboo. Do not discuss the evidence that zero covid can work if and when it is correctly implemented. Dismiss it. Use all means, including psychological operations to undermine awareness of zero community transmission.

Authoritarianism. Lethal Authoritarianism.

27.  Evidence of malfeasance in public office is abundant. I wrote this blog article last May. Since then more evidence of malfeasance has emerged.


28. An 80 seat majority should not allow such anti Democratic inhumane harm causation by Government policy to persist.

That is an abuse of Power beyond reason, beyond bearing, beyond any claims of representation of constituents.

29. Johnson is inflicting upon the English people a similar degree of harm as Blair inflicted on the Afghani and Iraqi people 18 years ago, in 2002 and 2003 onwards, which is a continuation of the harms inflicted by Austerity in 2008 onwards, the support of violent overthrow of a legitimate Government in Libya in 2009, and an attempted overthrow of the legitimate government of Syria in 2011 and the continued Saudi war against Yemen.  All actions supported by the English Government. Abroad and at home,. they are causing harm to vulnerable citizens.

30. These are in effect Late Elizabethan Holocausts - where millions of lives have been shattered or adversely affected by wholly avoidable actions and policy choices made by UK Government policy. 

This cannot stand.

This cannot be allowed to continue.


Kindest regards

Corneilius 

"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Friday, 19 March 2021

The word 'woke', when used by bullies, as an insult. Which is a compliment.

The word 'woke' is used by bullies as an insult.


What they don't get is that it is a compliment.

I am woke.

Thank you! I know...

That said....

Bullies use the work as an insult. It is a way of dismissing the other person, as a put down and as a way to avoid the evidence. It is always used at the other person.

Being dismissed in the middle of a discussion or interaction can trigger a reaction, hacking the amygdala, shutting down cortex. 

The bullies know this.

That usage of insult is designed to trigger the target into insulting back.
That is a trap.

Never react with a counter strike.
Just point out the truth.

What ever it is, what ever the discussion.
Just place the evidence.

Don't worry about convincing or persuading.
Just place the evidence, calmly.

That way the bully has no traction.
That way the bully loses.

Which is why Piers Morgan walked off set. 



He lost, in public, to the truth, calmly told.

Some one asked on twitter : "what is the opposite of 'woke'?"

I wrote the following.

Bully.

Bully is the opposite of woke.

It is not asleep Being asleep is not the opposite of woke.

Being awake and a bully - that is the opposite of woke.

Racism is bullying.
Misogyny is bullying.
Xenophobia is bullying.
Nationalism is bullying.
Nativism is bullying.
Hating the vulnerable, the poor, the disabled is bullying.

Externalised Costs is bullying.
Profiteering is bullying.

Hierarchies of Power and Violence are bully cultures.

When an Oligarchy or Plutocracy is occupying democratic legislatures, excluding the people, and in co-ordination with those who mediate existing public discourse by controlling the bulk of public news media - that is bullying.

Online political grooming is bullying.

Free Speech is a responsibility to be honest, truthful. 

Free Speech is not a licence to be a bully.

Free Speech is not a right to groom, manipulate or exploit others through use of lies and various logical fallacies targeting vulnerabilities.

The bullies hide behind Free Speech - to do this they deliberately describe it inaccurately.

The origin of Free Speech is that a Government may not block a citizen from speaking truth. That is what it means. Nothing more than that. There's an element of Religious Freedom associated with it though that is the least part of the meaning. Religious truths vary, are relative to one another and often do not mirror social material reality. That is why Religion is less than useful when deliberating on policy that concerns the shared spaces between us, the commons. The care of the commons demands honesty and evidence above all else.

The meaning of Free speech is that those in Power cannot be allowed to sanction anyone for speaking truth to the community, in public, about the behaviour, actions and outcomes of those in Power.  That honesty is critical to any democratic system. 

Whistle-blowers are essential to any community's integrity and they must be protected. Transparency makes any system safer. Evidence matters.

When the British Prime Minister dismissed Zero Community Transmission strategy as impossible and impractical in spite of the evidence that it is protecting the lives and economies of 1.8 billion people across East Asia and Oceania, that was bullying. He was using the power of his position to make sure that no honest discussion of ZCT would be allowed in Parliament, thus undermining Free Speech.
 
Free Speech was never meant to suggest anyone can utter whatever lies, falsehoods or misinformation they like as manipulative tools in any public fora, as tools that exploit other people's vulnerabilities in order to secure any economic, ideological, political or religious advantage.

I think that kind of behaviour is criminal in intent. I know it is criminal behaviour.

Exploiting another human beings vulnerability in order to groom and then exploit that person is a criminal action. It is pure evil. In the sense of a lying nasty venal assault on the integrity of the psyche of the other person for personal gain. 

I do not subscribe to any concept of Evil as outside of human action - there is no Satan, no Santa Claus, no force of Evil outside of human behaviour and action.


my song, Bully, Bully, Bully



 

Kindest regards

Corneilius

"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."