Friday, 28 December 2018

Queen and the Bish talk about "tribalism". The BBC's response is... erm... tribal.

Christmas Day was originally an ancient pagan festival of generally jovial equinox-related debauchery.  In later years, a bunch of extreme cultists - sometimes known as "Christian State", also known as the "Holy Roman Empire", apparently - culturally misappropriated said pagan festival by means of a Germanic Victorian ritual involving 12 sordid days of turkey sandwiches.  In more recent years, even the culturally misappropriated ex-pagan party got culturally re-misappropriated.  Corporates hijacked the ex-pagan, ex-Christian party converting it to a new, post-modern ritual of trashy consumerism - where success is measured by the number of transactions typed up into a spreadsheet - shallow celebrity, family rows over which social media channel to watch at the Christmas lunch table, and a politicised vulture-fest by the legacy mainstream media (largely feeding on itself).

The culturally misappropriated Christmas Day is a perfect opportunity for the Queen (the head of the British State and Church of England) and the Archbishop of Canterbury (the permanent secretary of the Church of England, with more political power than the Queen) to say something on the telly.  Although most of us ordinary taxpaying plebs were too busy having a blazing family row about what to return to to pay attention to either of them, some people would have watched them in their original broadcast.  Most of us would have caught the carefully re-spun headlines sensationalised by the legacy mainstream media.

Where is there a media performance to be re-spun, the legacy mainstream media will be there to re-spin it to meet the legacy mainstream media's own cynical agenda.  And, predictably, first past the line is the BBC.

From each media performance, two particular opportunities for some cynical re-spinning were:

"Perhaps part of that wisdom is to recognise some of life's baffling paradoxes, such as the way human beings have a huge propensity for good, and yet a capacity for evil. Even the power of faith, which frequently inspires great generosity and self-sacrifice, can fall victim to tribalism." (Queen)

"God’s language of love is exclusive. It requires us to forget other languages of hatred, tribalism, rivalry, political advantage and of materialism, pride, greed, and so many more." (Archbishop of Canterbury)
What each speaker intended is irrelevant.  The BBC took both media events, re-spinning each event to serve the BBC's long-preordained position of their beloved anti-Brexit agenda.

The BBC linked Queenie immediately to Brexit, cynically stating, "The monarch, 92, highlighted the importance of people with opposing views treating each other with respect.  It comes as Parliament remains divided over the PM's Brexit deal, as the UK prepares to leave the EU in March."  No reader/listener needed this spelling out to them, but in view of all other more important difficulties in the world, it is an extraordinarily tribal choice by the BBC editors to link Brexit unnecessarily to the Queen.  Thus the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism.

The BBC needed a bit of help from a Churchie stooge to link the Bish to Brexit.  The most confident unassisted spin of the BBC was the scribble, "While he [the Bish] did not specifically mention the UK's political future, he stressed the importance of the language of love replacing the language of conflict."  The BBC needed some helpful soundbitey gibberish techno-babble from another Bish, this one being the Bishop of London, Bishop Mullally. "Debates in politics around the EU referendum have created division," wrote the BBC as a terribly convenient quotation from the Bishop of London. "My belief is that diversity creates strong community; division weakens it."

From the two Bishs' words, the BBC thus promoted two narratives of its ideological agenda.  For the first narrative, the BBC allegedly managed to find somebody whose world view is allegedly soooo culturally Marxist that the speaker implied a series of re-bundled artificial distinctions between "diversity", "division" and "difference", loading the terms with unnecessary emotionalism.  Unbundle the artificial distinctions and the quotation is just plain nonsense (unless one takes the quotation as an advocacy of "divide-and-rule", a traditional position of the Church).  Allegedly.  Either the BBC correctly reported Bish Mullally's words, or made them up for her ('ere ya go, luv, read this aaaat").  Allegedly.  Howsoever justified, the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism, and even "found" another Bish to prop up the tribalism of the BBC's editorial policy.

For the second narrative, the BBC achieved a position of near-perfect cognitive dissonance.  Since before 2016, the BBC has always promoted the Remainiac cause, taking every opportunity to denigrate the fight for freedom from technocracy that the vote to leave ultimately represented, being careful to ensure that the denigration was done in the most "impartial" way possible, whilst blocking out any rational voices and non-metropolitan voices within the scope of the issue.  Again, the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism.

It looks like "taking back control" is going to be a much harder and longer job than any leave voter might have wanted to believe as at 23 June 2016.  Taxation without representation continues apace.  In the world of the legacy mainstream media, led by the taxpayer-funded BBC, tribalism lives on.

We can be confident that the BBC will continue to present all issues in a tribal, bi-polar way, to meet the BBC's own tribal requirements, for the foreseeable future.

Thursday, 27 December 2018

Open Skies agreements in place between UK and US? Is this even legal?

Mendacity continues.

If Sky is any credible yardstick, then in July 2017, some American airlines muttered something about the stark reality of the UK’s crashing out of the European Common Aviation Airspace (“ECAA”), and in November 2018, the UK & the US governments “agreed” an open skies deal between them.  Reuters has also reported the story, adding that the UK is engaged in serial bi-lateralism with other countries for air access.

It seems that Sky might be onto something.  Perhaps Sky fed from Reuters, or perhaps Sky read something from UK Gov itself, but on 28Nov2018, the UK government itself bragged about the US-UK Open Sky agreement.  Trade press (one example) jumped on the story on the same day (so no choreography there, then).

Has anybody told the UK government that, if it has indeed concluded trade deals with third countries before 29Mar2019, then UKGov has broken EU law?

TOFU Article 218 makes it very clear that only the EU may conclude commercial deals; the UK would have needed permission in an agreed Withdrawal Agreement to have opened negotiations for air access with third countries while the UK were still a member of the EU (until 29Mar2019).  The UK’s transgression in this respect will certainly have registered with European Commission and Remainiacs (such as Blair, Clegg, the litigious Miller et al): when (if?) Brexit comes closer to happening, we can be confident that Project Sabotage will be wheeled out once again to derail the UK’s new deals with third countries.

Could UKGov be so stupid?  Well, having invoked Article 50 without a viable plan to transition from EU member to EU non-member, the short answer is probably “yes”.  Or, as we can see with the currently proposed Withdrawal Agreement - and the cynical political engineering by the likes of May and Robbins to get to the proposed Withdrawal Agreement, including the scurrying back to Brussels to keep on negotiating even after the European Council approved the deal (in 30 minutes!) and closed the Commission’s mandate to negotiate - the longer answer is probably “no”, on the basis that an outcome must be seen to be impossible to justify an anti-democratic U-turn.  Hence why Project Sabotage is so important to Remainiacs.  It’s why Remainaics needed to exterminate EFTA/EEA as a means to implementing a sensible Brexit.  And, measured by their actions, May & Robbins are functionally Remainaics.

Meanwhile, on 19Dec2018, the European Commission published COM(2018) 890, “Preparing for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 30
March 2019: Implementing the Commission’s Contingency Action Plan.”  This correctly reminds its readers - and anybody else, for that matter - that a “no-deal” Brexit would have the UK leave the EU along with all subsidiary agreements, including the ECAA.  As a result, airlines based in the UK would be instantly denied access to ECAA airspace and landing rights 11pm UK time 29Mar2019.  COM(2018) 890 announced temporary, transitional rules, to give EU operators enough time to close their operations with the UK tidily (pages 6-7).  The two transitional rules are:
     To the extent also granted by the UK to EU operators, to grant UK operators over-fly access and to grant UK operators emergency (non-scheduled) landings in EU airports for a maximum period of 12 months.
     To propose a regulation that assigns validity to UK holders of ECAA certifications for up to nine months to allow for some time to avoid a catch-22 situation regarding air safety regulation.

This announcement, along with much else in COM(2018) 890, is a list of the key things for the EU and the EU27 to do to withdraw tidily their affairs from the UK.  The sole reason for any of the transitional periods set out in COM(2018) 890 appears to be towards implementing the EU external border around the UK in manageable chunks.  From the perspective of the European Commission, this is the job that needs to be done.  From the perspective of the EU27, there are likely to be some unpleasant surprises following the implementation of COM(2018) 890.  Nothing insurmountable, for sure, but subtleties which will lay the groundwork for the EU to extend further into the sovereignty of the EU27, beyond that which any of the EU27 would have agreed with the UK as one of the EU28.

More short-term, without impact on sovereignty, trade flow will be the nastiest surprise, especially for those EU27 who need to import from the UK in the short-term.  The four areas to watch are air transport, road haulage, financial services and import/export of goods.  COM(2018) 890 is particularly oblique on page 7, where it says, “If the Withdrawal Agreement is not ratified, all relevant EU legislation on imported goods and exported goods will apply as of the withdrawal date.”  This is an under-statement.  The EU27, not the EU, are responsible for Border Inspection Posts, so if the EU27 want to import - or need to import - from the UK, then they are already too late to build any useful mitigating measures to keep trade flowing.  This includes the EU’s external border in Eire with Northern Ireland.

COM(2018) 890 is unlikely to be the European Commission’s final word on the subject.  But it is nevertheless an interesting window into the mind of the EU.

Sunday, 23 December 2018

Common Purpose: the puppetmaster?

At first glance, others' analyses of Common Purpose smell right (see bibliography, below).

It is certainly feasible that one organisation can have pervasive, extra-system influence throughout an entire system of government, including its agencies.  Groupthink has no barriers.

The real concern is whether Agenda 21, now presumably replaced by Agenda 2030, is aiming to bring about long-term 0% growth, 0% interest rates and zero carbon emissions in an issue-illiterate way to bring about "sustainable development".  In the twisted mind of a Leftist, all economic activity is zero-sum, so 0% growth means no change, therefore is more likely to be "sustainable" than otherwise.

In others' analysis of Common Purpose, I find that the analyses describes what I observe.  So far, I cannot fault the analyses.  Common Purpose is an agent to bring about Agenda 2030.

As a useful by-product for the Leftists, the same 0% interest rates enables misappropriation of wealth from modestly wealthy savers (the poor-ish) via the wealthy reckless borrowers (the ├╝ber-rich) to the banks (the ultimate debtor).  Leftists reckon that this is equality-of-outcome; normal people see it as feudalism and serfdom.

A better by-product for the Leftists is that the agenda's policy choices also lead to taxation without representation, equality-of-outcome, the abolition of meritocracy and, consequently, the de facto redundancy of democracy.  The end-games resemble a heap of Daleks ruling over masses of "upgraded" Cybermen.

All of a sudden, the context of the European Union looks all too clear.

But is this fair criticism?

Common Purpose's own publications


Frustratingly, Common Purpose's website doesn't seem bothered about defending itself, or even selling itself!  Does it reckons that its "graduates" are so deeply embedded into governmental systems that it's work is substantially done?

CP's own website contains little of any substance that a normal charity would publicise to prove its existence, or to drum up membership/sponsorship.  CP sounds coy about its alumni, its impact, its achievements.  Its message is a seemingly all over the place, a mishmash of subtle socialisation, some incomplete tangible achievements, general nonsense, a bit of psycho-babble, comprehensive missing-the-point and inadvertent admission of wrongthink.

Impact report 2017

CP's impact report of 2017 also fails to hit the spot.  Where one would expect a series of concrete, measurable deliverables being disclosed (i.e. "We did X which made Y happen which benefited Z people by enabling them to do W at time T"), instead we get:

  • "The programme helped me reflect on how I could create better ecosystems for promoting innovation."
  • "I think I’m so open minded, I try to be politically correct."
  • "Common Purpose is the organization par excellence, with the mission to put diversity at the heart of the leadership debate. What it does in practice—and in terms of walking the talk—is bring people from different communities, different sectors, different generations together to address the challenge and opportunity of leadership."

The third example above is classic Leftist gibberish used as a tool of socialisation.  It hits the right sound-bites, gives the reader the impression that the reader understands what they've read, but, actually, it says nothing useful to the reader.  The reader will only agree with the comment if the reader is pre-disposed emotionally to want to believe it.  Completely airbrushed out of that warm, fuzzy feeling is the measurable damage that Leftist policies - issue-illiteracy, wrongthink, equality-of-outcome-at-all-costs, Malthusian philosophy, diversity over meritocracy, identity politics over tangible achievements - aim to wreak over communities, sectors and generations.

One testimonial is worth quoting at length, because, at first sniff, sounds very close to being convincing.  Charles Asiedu, MD of Ecobank, said:
"I engaged the government agency responsible for the food procurement and suggested a collaborative approach involving the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank, the agency and Ecobank to resolve the food crisis. We brought the partners together and, after sharing what role we each thought we could play, together we designed a solution. Now we are mobilizing $50 million to support the importation of maize to help feed eight million Malawians. Prior to CSCLeaders I wouldn’t have thought more broadly about bringing in other partners to handle the crisis."
This simply doesn't make sense!  How did simply talking to other people who arguably should have already cared make a difference?  What was in the business interest of the other partners to engage in such solution, merely on the say-so of one bod from Ecobank?  The more one thinks about this example, the more a smell of something odious arises.

CP's impact report of 2017 also claims to have worked with 1,182 organisations, listing the most prestigious and well-known (PDF page 12).  It is nowadays quite common for private sector organisations to brag about their social activities ("corporate social responsibility", which is another tool of the same agenda to which CP is aligned).  There are quite a lot of banks on the list.  And these are the same banks who are so signed up to Leftist social justice that they tend to accumulate wealth at their customers' expense (customers' deposits taken, 0% interest returned to depositors, cash used to hedge purchase of assets anyway, erosion of cash value places net burden on depositor) and then expect their own corruption to be bailed-out at the taxpayers' expense.  The brazen display of such cognitive dissonance is remarkable: here, the banks are practising stealthy confiscation of wealth by rigging the monetary system, yet publicly supporting a charity that espouses equality-of-outcome.  The only way in which this couldn't be cognitive dissonance is that the equality-of-outcome is "all equally poor and enslaved to a capitalist master".

Without irony, CP even names Deutsche Bank as one of the prestigious organisations with which CP has worked!  Is this the very same Deutsche Bank which, in 2016, the German government was planning to bail-out but which the same government realised it probably couldn't afford to do so?  Oops.  Puts the European Union's state-aid rules to the test, doesn't it?  By contrast, what's really going on - stripping out politico crap - is explained by the MoneyGPS (12 minute video, source Bloomberg).  It's difficult to say whether Deutsche Bank is a good advert for CP.  On the one hand, DB represents the very model of financial impropriety, to the extent that a government looks set to change its own rules to fudge the issue.  So much for the rule of law.  Not a good advert for CP.  On the other hand, DB represents such an elegant way to defraud the people - laundering the peoples' gains away from the via the official banking system - that it is perhaps the best advert for aggressive, goalpost-moving socialism that could ever have been invented.  Marx and Trotski would have been so proud.  So perhaps a brilliant advert for CP, after all.

Annual report 2017 - Common Purpose (disclosed by own website)

CP UK discloses - as it is lawfully obliged to do - its corporate status.  It also discloses its charitable status.  Its UK company number is 3556983.  Its UK charity number is 1023384.  It also has a Scottish charitable registration, SCO41166.

A search for "Common Purpose" at Companies House lists six entities with "common purpose" in the name, sharing the same registered address, Monmouth House, 38-40 Artillery Lane, London, E1 7LS. (As at 23Dec2018).

A search for "Common Purpose" at the UK Charity Commission lists three registrants with "common purpose" in the name that look related to CP.

According to the annual report of 2017, CP UK's turnover was £1.7m (2016: £1.9m), of which £1.2m was course fees (2016: £1.1m).

I'm not convinced that 2016's numbers actually cast.  1900673+1709358=3610031, but 1747658-1785260=-37602.  The use of brackets seems to be negligently inconsistent.  2016's annual report didn't appear on CP's website as at 23Dec2018.

The balance sheet as at 31Jul2017 was in net deficit, £100,624 (2016: £63,022).  In spite of this, the trustees believed that the entity was a going-concern.  One would the trustees to say where the money comes from, but the trustees don't reveal this.  Instead, the entity discloses its ultimate controlling entity as Common Purpose Charitable Trust ("CPCT").

Annual report 2017 - Common Purpose Charitable Trust

CPCT is a company limited by guarantee.  Its company number is 02832875 and it uses the same charity number as above, 1023384.

CPCT discloses no list of members, as befits a private company.  In its Persons of Significant Control 03Jul2016 in an annual confirmation statement of 08Jul2016, "The company knows or has reasonable cause to believe that there is no registrable person or registrable relevant legal entity in relation to the company."  However, the PSC legislation caught quite a few people out.  Julia Middleton was the Person of Significant Control with effect from the regulation's effective date of 06Apr2016 to 03Jul2016.  Middleton was a registered officer of the CPCT, no longer is, yet CP holds her out as the "founder and chief executive".  Normally, a chief executive would be a currently registered director of a company.  Middleton isn't a director of CP (company 3556983) either, but she is listed as one of three people of significant control for CP (company 3556983).  As at 23Dec2018, Middleton has a total of nine past and present directorships.

CPCT's turnover was £5m in the year ending 31Jul2017 (2016: £4.7m).  In both years, course fees represented the largest plurality of income, with "income from non-UK bodies" comprising the second largest plurality of income.  2017 saw a significant increase in "other trading activities" relative to 2016.

There is no segmental analysis by geography or by function to understand the "income from non-UK bodies".  This doesn't smell right, especially for a Leftist organisation whose soulmates include the Tax Justice Network.  Here is a report from the TJN lamenting the lack of global corporate transparency, co-funded by the European Union.  The difference between what the Leftist TJN preaches and what the Leftist CPCT practices is quite stark.

Again, I'm not convinced that 2016's numbers cast: 4740733-5321632=-580899, not -581971 as reported.

CPCT's balance sheet as at 31Jul2017 was £0.8m (2016: £0.5m).  Operating cash flow was £-0.8m (2016: £0.13m).  CPCT employed 68 people in both years.  The simple average salary is £33,793pa, but the disclosure of 9 highly-paid individuals means that the lowest salaries are considerably lower than the simple average salary.  Social justice in action?

CPCT discloses no ultimate controlling entity.

Charity Commission disclosures

The registered aim of CPCT is:
"CPCT oversees the activities of CPUK, CP International,CP Customised Ltd, CP Global Customised and CP Asia Pacific. It safeguards brands, intellectual property, web domain names and trademarks, holds the overall strategic plan and supports the alumni. Our educational courses give people the inspiration, skills and connections to become better leaders at work and in society."
This sounds much more corporate than a "real" charity that us ordinary plebs would recognise as a charity.  The last sentence is cynically vague.


No wonder democracy feels frayed and exploited.

There is a strong whiff of the Leftists' "old boys network" about Common Purpose, an ideal vehicle whereby the ideology of Cultural Marxism can be spread, to perpetuate issue-illiterate policy choices at government level, to lock in corporate corruption, to lock out democratic control, to achieve the perfect state of taxation-without-representation, the global Soviet.  Leadership and training for the parasites of any political system.

Common Purpose makes no attempt to debunk allegations of its ulterior motives.  On the contrary, Common Purpose continues to evangelise diversity over meritocracy, socialisation over rationality, emotionalism over empiricism.  The only possible consequence of this evangelism is the promotion issue-illiterate policies and related groupthink.

Given Leftists' dire hatred of Vladimir Putin, the nature of Common Purpose is enough to make a normal, ordinary pleb wonder whether Putin has a valid point after all.

Bibliography: (see also the annotation from clothcap on 04Oct2010)