Morons of Fandom: The anti Captain Marvel crowd

Captain Marvel is the next film from Marvel’s sausage factory of film production starring Brie Larson as Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel which is out in a few weeks. It will make Marvel/Disney gazillions and looks to be as much fun as your average Marvel film.

In terms of a character in the comics, Carol Danvers has, well, a complex history which I’ll skim over as it’s’ distracting, often horrible and anyhow, the writer Chris Claremont redeemed her by making her one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe way back in Uncanny X Men #164 and now she’s one of Marvel’s main characters with Thor, Spidey, Iron Man or the Hulk.

But there’s a big film coming out and it FEATURES A WOMAN! So the Comicsgate crowd peels themselves like one vast interconnected slug to try to sabotage the film by throwing up fake negative reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, which they tried with Black Panther last year. As a reminder Black Panther was one of the best films of 2018, made several gazillions and was nominated for actual awards in the Oscars outwith of the usual things like special effects. So that shows you how dim these folk are as the tactic which didn’t work last year, won’t this year, and will probably be done again when a superhero film not starring a white male is released.

Now I won’t link to videos or pages spouting this pish as after all, it’s easily done but there’s only one reason this is being done and that’s good old-fashioned sexism of the kind designed to keep women in their place away from billion dollar film franchises unless they fulfil whatever arbitrary set of rules they pull out their arse. It is intolerable  that women have to put up with this shit all the time, and one has to think the men doing this would be be spending a better life  if they actually spoke to women instead of hating them.

But that’s too hard it seems.

 

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A quick word about sectarianism in Scotland

This week saw Kilmarnock manager Steve Clarke rightfully despair about the sectarian abuse that comes from some Rangers fans, as well as the wider problem of religious bigotry in the West of Scotland.

This prompted not the widespread soul searching one would hope, but instead people started digging in, including sadly Steven Gerrard who decided instead of condemning what he clearly hears behind him since becoming manager of Rangers, decided to bring up the abuse of Kris Boyd. For the record Boyd sat with Clarke in a press conference to discuss the problem.

There is a feeling rife in Scotland that this ‘is just how it is‘ and that trying to change it would just be too hard, which of course is incredible nonsense. IF certain institutions and people wanted to change they would so we have to deal with the fact some people don’t just enjoy wallowing in this hatred, but they thrive from it. Ruth Davidson for example has helped get where she is today through pandering to Orange tinted bigots, while Labour have been hand in glove with the Orange Order for too long with Jeremy Corbyn being the latest leader happy to turn a blind eye.

Essentially large parts of Scotland’s establishment have strong links to sectarianism, or are themselves, sectarians happy to push that agenda with Murdo Fraser of the Tories being the most blatant example. As for the media, many wring their hands in faux outrage, but are only happy to cash in on sectarianism for clicks like the Daily Record is. Then there’s people like James Kelly MSP, who fought to get the ‘football act’ repealed which as flawed a bit of legislation as it was, it happened to be the only bit of legislation passed which targeted this specific problem. Kelly promised after the repeal that he and Labour would present ideas around the idea that education and other approaches would work. Over a year on we see there’s no educating some people and we still await Kelly,not to mention the Scottish media establishment’s ideas of ‘other approaches’ but Kelly wrings his hands in faux outrage while still celebrating his victory to let bigots realise there’s no punitive outcome for singing about ‘bathing in fenian blood’ or  IRA terrorists every week.

The SNP don’t get off the hook either. If they’d tightened up the law and made it more focused, while backing it up with some much needed reforms that Scotland desperately needs, they might not have presented people like Kelly and Fraser such an open goal. They’re now stuck in an impasse where they’re too scared to bring something into power, so we now have this situation where everyone (bar the extremists) want something to be done, but nobody is actually doing anything.

Fans of Rangers, and of Celtic, need to step up but the ongoing failure that is the SFA, fails the game at the most basic of levels has allowed this to fester for generations. Want it to stop? Next game where there’s something being chanted, the game after is played behind closed doors.. Still happens after that? Take away points. Fining clubs and slapping their wrists is pointless but nothing that will stop clubs quietly letting this carry on will happen and the Scottish establishment will wring their hands saying ‘och, it’s awful’ next time it happens, and the next time and the next time.

It is a fucking shame on all of us in the country to claim we’re tolerant, and different to the rest of the UK when we let this happen and we do let it happen because it isn’t challenged enough. If Scotland wants to live up to the potential we have, this archaic fucking monstrosity that blights us all has to go and if it means breaking down old institutions then fine. Nothing lasts forever and generations to come deserve better.

The ongoing death of the Labour Party

After the split of seven Labour MP’s there is a never-ending supply of people overjoyed as ‘having something to vote for’ but the group of MP’s, who include Chuka Umunna, Luciana Berger and a bunch of MP’s most people won’t have heard of, are calling themselves The Independent Group. They propose to give voters a path away from the Corbyn led Labour Party by offering such policies as opposing Brexit and that’s pretty much it. There’s no policies beyond this and indeed, it looks as if they’re looking to see what ideas are popular then try to adopt them as ideas. This is something used by politicians with not a lot of actual principles which makes it unsurprising that they dabbled with the idea of asking Ruth Davidson to lead them. If you think Davidson is ”centrist” then you don’t know fuck all about Scottish politics.

In short there’s a real Harold Saxon vibe about the whole thing.

Even though there’s a clear opportunism on display, and even though barring a united opposition to Brexit there’s nothing these people stand for there’s some sympathy to be extended to some of them. Mike Gapes for example made some good points about Labour’s failure to deal with antisemitism, but it’d take a lot not to feel for Berger, a Jewish woman, heavily pregnant talking about how the party she’s given her life to has in some case, turned on her because she’s Jewish.

Yet the smart, brave thing to do would have to resign, fight by-elections and let the people decide instead of this abject cowardice to show they’re not just trying to stay in a job. In the meantime Labour make a bad day worse by readmitting Derek Hatton. The way this looks is simply awful as to many, Labour look less of a viable government or opposition but a party of protest. Just as they are here in Scotland where they’ve not been a viable party of government for a decade and won’t be for as long as I can see.

And yet all of this is self-inflicted by Labour. All of this could have been avoided. Had the leadership, and those in the media close to it, not been aiming for the sort of political purity of sixth form political groups, they’d now either be a viable opposition or even sitting in power but thanks to Brexit, we have a situation where the loose coalition that has been Labour is coming to an end and even though I wouldn’t ever vote for them again it is a sad time. I invested a number of years into the party as one would being from the north of Glasgow, but to see it shambling around spitting abuse at Jews, Catholics (Scotland only) or cheer on Brexit, a far right project, because they’d rather people lose jobs than put up an alternative, is galling.

But before Tories cheer, there’s talk of several of their MP’s joining this shapeless group as it too sees its loose internal coalitions crumble as Westminster politics starts to fall after centuries. For Scotland, the future lies elsewhere with allies in Europe as well as in some time in the future a sane whatever remains of the UK but it’s clear now that one of the things Brexit is doing is rewriting the system, & that would normally be a good thing, but at a time when extremist and populism is so rife, this is also horribly dangerous.

Life is Golden

The other week during an especially tedious corporate team building/training exercise we did a thing where you”re to give away one of six things that mean the most to you. Everyone else picked ‘friends’ or’ family’. I picked time because if you don’t have, or indeed, make the time, then you can’t appreciate that which you hold the closest to you because you don’t realise as you live life that you don’t actually have much time. In an ideal world it should be down to oneself to decide what time they decide to waste, but the mundaneness of modern life enforces one to devalue time to the point where you never consider it, or worse, wish it away, to simply exist.

I say this as a friends back in Bristol passed away this weekend from cancer. I’ll not go into to much details as I’m unsure how much he’d, or his family, would like details splashed on the face of the internet, but needless to say it takes something reminding one of their mortality to appreciate time because for him his time is done, and we can only remember the times we all had drinking while watching the football, or talking bollocks in drunken nights down the Cat and Wheel, the local where a small community grew organically over the years.

Now that community which has been scattered over the last few years comes together to mourn and remember as we take the time to give one of our own their dues. It’s sad it takes an untimely death to remember how precious time is but while people remember you by taking the time to do so then there’s a part of you that never really dies. Instead you live on in the fractured bits of memory we all have of people never to fully fade out of existence.

In the end, once time has ran out for us all, this remembrance is all that’ll remain of us and that’s good because if you can get through life having an impact for the better on one person at least then you’ve lived a decent life and that’s all we want to do at the end of the day.

Morons of Brexit part 216

As the UK stumbles drunkenly towards a no-deal Brexit and total and utter carnage, the grim reality of what people have done is dawning upon the morons who lapped up what the bastards like Boris Johnson or Nigel Farage spouted in a vote which was endemically corrupt and xenophobic.

Today’s morons are those UK immigrants, sorry, ‘‘ex-pats”,  who voted to leave the EU and thought it’d never apply to them because they ain’t foreign innit. As an example of this utter fuckwittery look no further than this article here on the BBC and this wee gem.

Yvonne Stone, 62, is one of the younger members of the club and tells me she voted for Brexit: “I’ve been here for three years and have no plans to go back to the UK – but it will depend on what happens.

“When I voted to leave I didn’t think it would change anything for my rights to live here. We like it here and we don’t want to go back but if I don’t get my pension we might not have a choice.”

We face a situation where hundreds of thousands of immigrants come flooding back, many with long-term health conditions into a country where thanks to their votes the NHS across the UK will have depleted of staff because they weren’t like them. A ripple effect will mean housing becomes scarce as they rush to buy properties in the UK, and we hit a point where things break.

But hey, they get to have blue passports. That’ll make up for having fuck all food or drugs.

Lexit and the ongoing failure of the English left

One of the things about the fact the BBC’s Question Time had the same former UKIP candidate on for at least a fourth time to repeat pretty much the same speech he’s clearly reeled off millions of times in newspaper comments sections wasn’t the fact that Question Time is a big fat fix, but the reaction of some of the English left. To be precise the more Corbynist you were the more likely you were to see an ally in the rantings of an Orangeman. For example;

Which is clear nonsense for anyone actually paying attention to Scottish politics. No such claims have been made and the very idea of independence breaks the status quo clean in half; a fact Bastani ignores because it doesn’t fit his narrative or the idea that’s popped into his head.

And by narrative, I mean this;

There’s an idea among the English left that we in Scotland just need to pay heed to Jeremy Corbyn, fall into line with them and vote Labour yet polls show the Corbyn bounce Labour enjoyed in the 2017 general election is well and truly gone with Labour now firmly third in the polls and slipping. That’s not just down to the simply appalling leadership of Richard Leonard, a right hand man of Corbyn’s and someone who doesn’t even know what is or isn’t devolved. The fact is Labour are tanking partly because of Leonard & the fact the party can’t come up with one workable idea, but also because they’re a party of Brexit, or Lexit, the left wing version if you believe such a thing possible.Labour in effect have put themselves in the position of supporting removing our rights as Europeans, but also thanks to them aping Tory immigration policy, they’ve shown little opposition to the increasing deportations which are happening. This is all because of Lexit and the idea Corbyn is playing ‘a long game’.

Lexit is the idea that it’s possible to have a left wing Brexit. In effect from the ashes of leaving the EU, a new socialist utopia can be built which relies upon one major point; that things for people become so intolerable that they feel the only way out is voting Labour at an election, but polls clearly show Labour lagging, or such such a small lead that it falls within statistical error. So for people to be pushed to Labour they have to essentially suffer and for me, that’s the exact opposite of socialism and I find those advocating such a policy tend to be well off and able to survive when right now, people are losing jobs, or being hurt by Tory policies, or being pushed to take their own lives because they can’t take it anymore. Then of course there’s the fact Lexit throws EU27 migrants under the bus, and it risks the Good Friday Agreement.

So for me, if you support Lexit you’re in the same bracket as Brexiters who don’t care about the effects of what’s happening now, let alone what will happen come April, let alone what is to come longer term when all those folk let down by both main Westminster parties look to further extremes (with sections of both parties endorsing the worst of conspiracy theory led bigotry) out there for answers. With Nigel Farage rearing his ugly head, and talk of a ‘centrist’ party with Tony Blair’s cold, bloody hands at the helm, both Labour and the Tories look ready to tear themselves apart now that the contradictions of what are loose coalitions are being torn apart.

In effect we have the left, like the right, having an aspect who are rushing headlong into the destruction of people, their lives and relationships because they feel their version of political purity is worth a try. For people like myself whose life relies upon just in time distribution the idea that my life hangs on a thread because I’m threatened by zealots from the right, and the left, is deeply depressing. We are insulated in Scotland to a degree, but Brexit will rip that insulation aside, and without the protections of the EU and our European allies, we’ll be left to the whims of people who think in conspiracy theory, idiocy and xenophobia.

Basically we’re fucked. Like the Iraq War though, there will be Brexiter and Lexiter in a few short months desperately recanting as the people who have been ignored throughout all of this kick back and take their anger out on the cheerleaders of what is the single more insane act a nation has done to itself in peacetime.

Good luck to us. We’re going to need it.