Festival of Drivel!


By PETER HITCHENS (edited)

Daily Mail  columnist Peter Hitchens visited the ‘OCCUPY’ protest camp outside St Paul’s and concluded it is a ‘chaotic, self-righteous festival of drivel’

Every crank, dingbat and fanatic in Southern England has found his or her way to the camp by the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral. Whatever your cause, it has a pavilion here, especially if it is a lost cause.

There’s a Buddhist shrine next to an arrow marking the direction of Mecca. Che Guevara, that old mass murderer, has his image on display. There’s propaganda against the  ‘persecution of sex workers’. The Socialist Workers Party, those latchers on to every passing procession, have a stall that looks a little too neat and tidy for the occasion. Bolshevik discipline doesn’t really mesh with the world of Twitter and dope.

There really are signs against ‘capitalism’, a word used only by people who still think you can change human nature, which you sort-of can if you have concentration camps and an effective secret police.

And there are other placards enquiring rather aggressively: ‘What would Jesus do?’ People who ask this question always assume that Jesus would agree with them. Well, I suppose it’s possible. But what would He agree with, exactly?

Stand here long enough and you will be pinned to the wall, or to a pillar, by lots and lots of nice but rather silly people.

  • There’s the man who thinks we invaded Iraq to punish it for not having a central bank.
  • There’s the man who thinks the clue to the greed of the City somehow lies in the Channel Islands.
  • And there are dozens of recently fledged experts on the wickedness of the City itself, though it is clear that this is a new concern for them. They are thrilled to have discovered that the City of London Corporation is so fantastically undemocratic. They had no idea that such wickedness still survived, and that they can be against it.
  • There’s the slender public schoolboy with the looks of a tragic Thirties poet who, handed a megaphone, emits five minutes of the higher drivel about nothing in particular. ‘We are the people,’ he claims, adding: ‘We have forgotten what and who we are.’  Speak for yourself, sonny!
  • And in these less religious times, battiness takes new forms. A dreadlocked man in a Rastafarian hat and glowing red trousers rages about world citizenship to an audience of perhaps 12, including me.
  • In the mighty porch of the cathedral, a group of furry people are listening to a man play the guitar. I am reminded of Tom Lehrer’s song: ‘We are the Folk Song Army. Every one of us cares. We all hate poverty, war, and injustice .  .  . unlike the rest of you squares.’

I’m sure that if I had waited long enough, I would have been taken to one side by enthusiasts for flatulent diets, speakers of Esperanto, or persons who think that The Key To Everything is to be found in the measurements of the Great Pyramid.

My nostalgic side hoped to run into advocates of opening Joanna Southcott’s box, which was supposed to be unsealed at a time of grave national crisis, in the presence of all the bishops (it was eventually found to contain an old lottery ticket and a horse pistol). But such enthusiasts are scarce nowadays.

The “Teach-In”

Later, as darkness and drizzle fall, and a general meeting of stupendous, award-winning tedium gets under way, I am reminded of that forgotten horror of the Sixties, the ‘teach-in’.

The people’s representatives (if that is what they are, as they don’t represent me) take an unbelievable amount of time to approve a bland statement about Egypt. They are, it turns out, in favour of democracy and against repression.

When I ask one – who has lectured me lengthily about the wickedness of the banks – what his qualifications are in economics, he concedes with a self-mocking smile that he doesn’t have any.

Where do they come from? It’s hard to tell, though a lot are obviously students with vague timetables. One says he works with autistic children, a rather noble calling. Wouldn’t he be doing more good if he went back to that? He doesn’t think so. To him, this is more important.

It’s impossible to dislike most of them, though I have to admit I carefully avoided the squad of four gaunt men with hollow heroin-abusers’ faces, dressed in war-surplus fatigues and kicking a football around.

And I tried not to meet the stern gaze of the astonishing bearded preacher, who strides backwards and forwards across the cathedral steps, expounding his own version of the Gospels, for hours and hours and hours.

If haranguing were an Olympic event, he could harangue for Britain. The only trouble is that – because he is always on the move – you would have to follow him backwards and forwards for several miles to follow his argument. As it is, you get a snatch of it and then it fades away, and then it starts again.

The camp is scruffy, ugly and dispiriting. The last time I saw so many of these bubble tents was in Mogadishu in the middle of a horrible famine, when many of them contained dying babies.

Now you can’t tell what or who is in them because they’re mostly zipped up tightly. Not having my own thermal-imaging device, I cannot be sure, but in several hours at the camp I saw little sign of life among the tents. (Photo actually taken with thermal imaging camera showing 90% of tents unoccupied at night.)

There’s a lot of sensitivity over the heat-sensitive pictures which seemed to show that most of them were empty by night. ‘They falsified it,’ a determined young man tells me, in between thrusting pamphlets at me and giving me a forbidding reading list.

Cannabis

Nobody made any great efforts to deny that a  lot of cannabis was being smoked. If there really was a war on drugs, I suspect the police could devastate the camp by simply enforcing the Misuse Of Drugs Act 1971. But of course there is no such ‘war’, and the police aren’t interested.

There’s quite a lot of smoking of ordinary cigarettes going on, an interesting reflection on a generation that prides itself on not being fooled by corporate greed and consumerism. So why did they fall for that bit of it?

It was time to go into St Paul’s itself. I had hoped for Evensong, the most beautiful and potent service of the Church of England.

It would have done the campers good to listen to the haunting, 2,000-year-old words of the Magnificat: ‘He hath shewed strength with his arm. He hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seat: and hath exalted the humble and meek. He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away.’

Someone might then have explained to them that this was a promise of eternal justice, not a programme for government. Alas, it was some other modern service, its bare, plastic language weirdly out of tune with the clouds of medieval incense and the gorgeous feudal robes of the clergy. And the sermon, like so much of the Church of England, was infected with modern Leftwingery and talk about ‘equality’, which sounds nice in theory but always ends up very nasty in practice.

From outside the giant doors, you could just hear the bearded preacher roaring distantly, like the sea.

And I contrasted the great classical majesty of the cathedral, one of man’s most successful attempts to combine reason, science and hope, with the chaotic, self-righteous festival of drivel outside. Yet there’s no doubt which of the two is closer to the mood of the modern world, more’s the pity.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2058102/Occupy-London-Everyones-terribly-sweet–festival-drivel.html#ixzz1cw1iN08p

Vatican Calls for Global Bank


Vatican Calls for ‘Central World Bank’ to Be Set Up

Monday, 24 Oct 2011 | 6:54 AM ETBy: Reuters

The Vatican called on Monday for the establishment of a “global public authority” and a “central world bank” to rule over financial institutions that have become outdated and often ineffective in dealing fairly with crises.

A major document from the Vatican’s Justice and Peace department should be music to the ears of the “Occupy Wall Street” demonstrators and similar movements around the world who have protested against the economic downturn. [Actually many of these people are well-heeled university students and seasoned protesters; their intention is to set off a “people’s revolution” that will overthrow conventional government and replace it with a form of Marxism.]

A major document from the Vatican’s The 18-page document, “Towards Reforming the International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of a Global Public Authority,” was at times very specific, calling, for example, for taxation measures on financial transactions.

“The economic and financial crisis which the world is going through calls everyone, individuals and peoples, to examine in depth the principles and the cultural and moral values at the basis of social coexistence,” it said.

It condemned what it called “the idolatry of the market” as well as a “neo-liberal thinking” that it said looked exclusively at technical solutions to economic problems.

It called for the establishment of “a supranational authority” with worldwide scope and “universal jurisdiction” to guide economic policies and decisions.

Such an authority should start with the United Nations as its reference point but later become independent and be endowed with the power to see to it that developed countries were not allowed to wield “excessive power over the weaker countries.”

Effective Structures

In a section explaining why the Vatican felt the reform of the global economy was necessary, the document said:

“In economic and financial matters, the most significant difficulties come from the lack of an effective set of structures that can guarantee, in addition to a system of governance, a system of government for the economy and international finance.” [Does this sound like control to you? It does to me. What exactly is an “effective set of structures” and how can they “guarantee” changes in financial affairs worldwide?]

It said the International Monetary Fund (IMF) no longer had the power or ability to stabilize world finance by regulating overall money supply and it was no longer able to watch “over the amount of credit risk taken on by the system.”

The world needed a “minimum shared body of rules to manage the global financial market” and “some form of global monetary management.”

“In fact, one can see an emerging requirement for a body that will carry out the functions of a kind of ‘central world bank’ that regulates the flow and system of monetary exchanges similar to the national central banks,” it said.

The document, which was being presented at a news conference later on Monday, acknowledged that such change would take years to put into place and was bound to encounter resistance.

[Please consider this final statement very carefully…]

“Of course, this transformation will be made at the cost of a gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world authority and to regional authorities, but this is necessary at a time when the dynamism of human society and the economy and the progress of technology are transcending borders, which are in fact already very eroded in a globalized world.”

[The only two options here are a GRADUAL move toward a Global Bank or a SWIFT one that is now needed and apparently possible.]

We in the UK are already incensed that our Government is surrendering again and again to the demands of the Eurozone countries, not taking this opportunity to pull BACK from the “greater integration” that is being called for, but actually demanding MORE centralised control. What lunacy!

The Euro has been doomed as a currency ever since it began, and now that weaker countries are defaulting on their debts they are pulling everyone else down with them. But at least the UK is not in the Euro.

However, with ONE centralised global banking system (doubtless working towards one global currency) what protection will the well-managed economies have from profligate, defaulting, corrupt and badly-run economies? We’ll all be in the same (sinking) boat!!

The cry of “unity” can sound glorious on paper. It did so in the churches, until we realised that unity came with a price: centralised control, hence corruption and heresy. The only safety-net from the apostasy has been independence, and that is as true for the political world as it is for the Church.

Unity and oneness is all well and good when it’s wisely and fairly led, and when common concerns democratically overrule personal self-interest and the lust for power.

But since human nature is greedy and selfish the righteous go to the wall. We have learned that the hard way ever since we joined the supposed “common market” now turning into a behemoth called the United States of Europe. We are now more enslaved to the EU than we would have been if we’d lost the Second World War, and it’s been OUR foolish choice!!

I am writing this on the same day that our spineless lackey of a Prime Minister has gone out of his way to defeat a Commons Motion to have a referendum on Europe. This is the same Prime Minister who is bending over to do the bidding of his EU buddies, and pledging yet more billions to their doomed currency.