I do try in these pieces to avoid ending the day on a sour note. In this case, I fear a merciless piss-take is the only option open to me….but the bitterness will still peek through.
If you were trying to find a group to defend, I doubt if many people would choose the UK’s ragtag community known (for some reason) as Travellers. But if you were were hell-bent on such a lost cause, I’d be staggered if you then chose Vanessa Redgrave as your cheerleader. One could call such a plan the incomprehensible being hired to defend the indefensible.
Let’s take each element in turn.
Gypsy communities have been making a nuisance of themselves for decades in Britain. I’ve come into contact with them three times, and in each case burglary, theft from oil tanks, and varietal friction with the indigenous community have been the result. Having rebranded themselves as ‘Travellers’, the choice of collective noun is itself steeped in ironic hypocrisy: far from wanting to travel, most of these people appear to be determined to settle…and become leeches upon those unfortunate enough to find them as neighbours.
The most recent media event Travellers have created concerns the dispute with Basildon Council about a post-build planning permission. Being very naughty indeed, Basildon refuses to recognise an illegal build clearly designed to take advantage of mad New Labour pc ideas about the rainbow of multiculturalism…aka, owning land – and then using a hastily built khazi to steal building rights on it from the community. I recognise this tactic only too well: as I do the tales of local people being threatened into silence.
Once upon a time, real gypsies worked in fairgrounds and became travelling entertainers. I remember fairs employing such people when I was a kid. They had a mysterious, curly-haired, earring-sporting exotic air to them – but little in the way of a threatening nature. All that changed when the fairs and circuses lost out to cinema and the telly during the 1960s. Since then, soi-disant travellers have become adept at exploiting the insanity of extreme multiculturalism….and the increasingly stretched tolerance of the British.
This morning I watched a BBCNews channel slot about the case. Invited to explain why Basildon’s final decision to evict the gypsies was a heinous crime against human rights and worthy of a war crimes tribunal in the the Hague, a central-casting agitprop pillock spent ten minutes of precious airtime answering searching questions with unconnected answers.
So, the anchor asked, given that 99.9% of the local community would like these Travellers to travel elsewhere, what did they have to complain about? Travellers have been given a raw deal by local authorities through the centuries, the calm dissembler answered.
So, the anchor asked in turn, what do you say to the evidence given of nakedly ignoring planning rules, casual crime, and threats that have accompanied the gypsies’ stay in Basildon? All such cases involving bona fide travellers can be traced back to bigotry and the sort of racial prejudice this country is supposed to oppose, the propagandist snided.
What, one wonders, is a bona fide traveller?
Anyway, enter the adorable Vanessa Redgrave. A luvvie, a rich upper middle class woman who – aside from the carefully negotiated luxury caravan on set – has never seen the inside of the travelling life.
Let me relate a brief anecdote about Ms Redgrave. Returning home to West London seven years ago, I walked past Vanessa shaking hands and saying goodbye to a group of dumpy left-wing Wimmin who were clearly in awe of her. Turning over quietly at the kerbside was an enormous grey Bentley, and as I passed the group, Vanessa Redgrave said to this adoring knot of activists, “Can I give any of you a lift home?”
I laughed out loud, my mirth attracting a glance of pure vitriol from the famous actress. But the episode sort of sums up what she is about: interference in the lives of those she cannot really help, doesn’t understand, but nevertheless wants to use as an example of why the life that has been of such benefit to her is appallingly evil, and must be wiped from history.
Today I also watched as Redgrave wittered on to hordes of scribblers and snappers about how Basildon Council had behaved disgracefully from start to finish. So disgracefully, in fact, that it had served the needs and wishes of its constituents against those of interlopers with no loyalty to the community beyond what it could scrounge off the inhabitants.
The Redgrave dynasty is similar to that of Harriet Harman’s forebears, the Longfords: always on the wrong side, always unable to analyse the facts in a balanced manner, and forever convinced that they are right – while the rest of us poor pygmies are deluded by vicious media determined to do down anyone out of the ordinary.
No motive for that media persecution is ever produced. But one thing really is for sure: only Heaven can help anyone in a Socialist State who dares to be out of the ordinary.