The news that the US Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade has divided opinion. Here is our first debate piece on the issue: we have two different views from two different young women about the issue.
Olivia Lever is the director of Blue Beyond. You can follow her at @liv_lever on Twitter:
‘I feel very annoyed and frustrated. A woman should have the right to choose in the 2022, and the state should never have interference over a woman’s body – it is very similar to the vaccine debate, the state should have no say in what you do with your body. In a practical sense, sex education and social infrastructure in the States is very poor.
On a post note, there is no mention of social infrastructure being made better to help those that have to have babies not be struck down by the financial burden or making sure that these children don’t have less of a life than they should. The whole thing is so poorly thought out, plus the US is supposed to be secular. It’s the constitutional principle. We could lose same-sex marriage and gay marriage. It’s stupid to lose contraception seeing as it prevents abortion.’
@BeatriceSEM takes the opposite view:
‘Absolutely delighted and feeling pretty emotional. The number of babies who will now be given a chance at life is massive! I hope very much other countries follow suit!’
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The Moment of DecisionBy Oscar Edwards — 5 months ago
In the throes of the culture wars, it’s easy to get acclimated to the situation after some time has passed. It feels like a lifetime ago that the battlefield that has become of the issue of transgenderism was little more than a few videos on YouTube imploring viewers to cringe at ‘Die Cis Scum’, and if anything demonstrates the futility of the adage ‘twitter is not real life’, it would be the recent admission from Jamie Wallis that he considers himself a woman.
There is almost certainly some kind of meaning to the fact that Jamie’s desire to be a woman emerged after he was raped, as though he psychologically associates a lack of autonomy to womanhood. But I am not a psychologist, and Jamie’s warped feelings about his identity are irrelevant in and of themselves. What this turn of events creates however, is a moment of decision for the Conservatives.
For a long time, the Conservatives have enjoyed playing both sides of the culture wars. At conference, they can laud Maggie Thatcher as the first female Prime Minister and reap the benefits of appearing to be progressive – knowing that opposition can be quickly labelled sexist, and something that even the Conservative party has outgrown. Simultaneously, they can point to the Labour party and remind us of what happens if we abandon them. A few cringeworthy remarks about supporting women into politics is certainly a preferable alternative to those same “women in politics” sporting a five-o’clock shadow and suspiciously broad shoulders.
Governments, political parties, and states, like individuals, can hold simultaneously contradictory beliefs. Those who do not act are fortunate enough to never have to confront these contradictions – for they never implement them. But it is through existential participation in life that these contradictions make themselves plain, and a moment of decision must occur. Constitutional monarchies justified themselves with recourse to the people – but what happens when the monarch and the people (or at least, the institutions representing the people) are at odds over a decision? Who decides? The logic of constitutional monarchy legitimises the king with recourse to the people, and so those institutions closer to the people in the mind of the populace ultimately set the laws. It’s these moments of decision that move history – a constitutional monarchy may retain the state form of monarchy but rest atop the principle of democracy, but the moment of decision reveals the incoherence of this state form and opens up a state of exception to alter it.
Equally, the Conservatives present themselves as being opposed to wokeism, but like the constitutional monarch – justify themselves on the principles of equality, and the moment of decision reveals the incoherence of their rule. Whilst the party had no skin in the game, and whilst it had no existential participation, it could ignore the incoherence because it never actually had to make any decision based on these two contradictory principles. But the moment of decision has arrived, and what is in store for us as members of the party?
Jamie Wallis has been supported by Boris and Oliver Dowden, the CEO of the party. It is clear the Conservatives have no intention of removing this person from the party or even coming close to asserting that transgenderism is in no way conservative. Jamie Wallis will most certainly be in attendance at Conference and all Conservative events in the future. The Conservative party will now have to decide:
- How will it refer to Jamie, should he ask to be referred to by female pronouns?
- What will they do if Jamie Wallis decides he wants to use the female bathrooms?
- If they wish to affirm Jamie’s wishes, how will they then define what a woman is, since it clearly no longer conforms to a simple definition?
Once again, the failure of Conservatives to engage in philosophy rears its ugly head. When you don’t attempt to delve into your beliefs, when you rest everything on ‘Common Sense’, you actually rest your political order upon the principles of those who do wish to assert and articulate their beliefs. Then, when you inevitably go to implement your beliefs: you’re struck with the inability to implement them in accordance with the principles you’ve justified your beliefs on. It’s simply not enough to have a political philosophy which resolves political (read: economic, technical, bureaucratic, etc.) problems. Your political philosophy must blend, gel, mesh, and harmonise with your ontological beliefs about the very essence of what it means to be anything at all. The idea that culture, economics, and philosophy are distinct and separate spheres is an optical illusion brought about by extended periods of peace. Any of these things, driven to a sufficient extreme become political, and our only tool to navigate these new political realities is philosophy. Those who don’t use it will find themselves lost, both politically and spiritually.
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In a Pandemic, Anarcho-Tyranny Reigns SupremeBy William Yarwood — 5 months ago
Towards the end of February, the general public were graced with a brand spanking new billboard from the Merseyside Police Department. Was this new billboard highlighting the good work the police department was doing? Was it highlighting new Coronavirus guidelines? Was it alerting people to a new potential criminal threat that existed inside of the county? No. The new billboard brandished an LGBT rainbow flag and superimposed beside it lay, in large bold capital lettering, “Being Offensive is an Offence”.
To no one’s surprise, this turned out to be part of a new campaign by Merseyside Police to combat ‘hate crime’ in the area and invite people to report it to the department. This was met with outrage with many calling it out as a chilling and horrible act by the Merseyside Police; illuminating how authoritarianism, identity politics and ‘wokery’ had seeped into the uniforms of our police service. The department did retract somewhat and apologised for stating that being ‘offensive’ was a crime – which they admitted it wasn’t – but they doubled down on the need for the public to report so-called ‘hate speech’ and ‘hate crime’, all the while stressing the need to show ‘solidarity’ with the LGBT community. Truly stunning and brave.
The issue no one seems to be addressing is why on earth is Merseyside Police putting efforts into combating ‘hate crime’ when violent crime, the county’s main source of crime, has increased by 5% in the last year alone? Surely their time, money and efforts would be better spent dealing with rising violence in their county rather than unsettling the people of Merseyside with an authoritarian and inaccurate billboard? Perhaps not. After all, catching criminals is hard; controlling ordinary citizens is easy.
The efflorescence of outrage over this event provides me an opportunity to bring back into the fold one of my favourite concepts – anarcho-tyranny.
For those not aware, anarcho-tyranny is a concept which seeks to describe and explain how a state controls ordinary citizens in their behaviour but ultimately fails to enforce the protective rule of law; enabling crime and disorder to flourish while innocent citizens become ever more restricted and regulated. If you wish to learn about the origins and core examples of this concept, I recommend you read the first article I ever wrote for this publication entitled ‘Anarcho-Tyranny Reigns Supreme’. While the Merseyside Police billboard can be seen as a more traditional example of anarcho-tyranny, it enables an analysis into something more interesting, especially if one considers the context. The context that this billboard was erected in was the Coronavirus pandemic i.e. the largest national crisis that this country has faced for many years. So, while the actions of Merseyside Police may seem inappropriate considering the current climate, it does highlight two things. Firstly, that the real priorities of the state and its allied elites to control ordinary citizens remains the same; secondly, and most importantly, this pandemic has given a blank check to anarcho-tyrants whose only concern is regulation and control.
Take for example the infamous Coronavirus Act 2020. This act has facilitated a growth in the size and remit of the state that seemed impossible to most just a little over a year ago. While the British state has, in the past, taxed you, spied on you and regulated what you do with your own body, it now explicitly tells you how, when and where you are able to live your life. Except for the odd occasions when you need to go outside for shopping or exercise (or to virtuously bang your pots and pans together for our Lord and Saviour the NHS) you remain essentially under house arrest – unable to enjoy life as we normally understand it. This drastic expansion of the state into regulating every minute detail of people’s lives is a core tenant of the ‘tyranny’ part of anarcho-tyranny. As Samuel T. Francis, the originator of the term, writes, anarcho-tyranny extends and entrenches ‘the power of the state, its allies and internal elites’, so the more things that become offences – such as meeting up with others outside or going for one too many daily runs – the more power the state and its allied elites have over the citizenry. Thus the Coronavirus Act can be seen as a new zenith of British anarcho-tyranny, as it has given the state an unprecedented ability to not just regulate large aspects of an average citizen’s behaviour but effectively plan their lives. If you would like some to read some more in-depth analysis of the Coronavirus Act and its consequences for civil liberties, I’d highly recommend going through Big Brother Watch’s collection of ‘Emergency Powers & Civil Liberties Reports’ which highlight the extensive and draconian nature of the Coronavirus Act.
Another core pillar of anarcho-tyranny is that the rules only apply to the innocent and not to the ruling elites or criminals, and what has been seen during this pandemic highlights that the Coronavirus restrictions have only really applied to ordinary citizens and not to state elites and their allies. When journalists, celebrities and politicians were caught breaking lockdown rules they did not pay the same costs that ordinary citizens who broke the rules did. Many of the chief architects of these lockdowns were also caught breaking the rules and while, at worst, they had to resign their posts, it wasn’t surprising to watch government officials run to their defence. If one sees “anarcho-tyrants are the real hegemonic class in contemporary society”, as Francis did, this makes complete sense as those in power would seek to protect those that have made this pandemic such a shining example of anarcho-tyranny. The state always protects its own – especially those who enable its power.
While the anarcho-tyrants have been busy protecting their own during this pandemic, they continue to absolve the innocent of genuine protection against actual crime. While many celebrate the fall in crime overall in the nation, it is often ignored that this is not the trend for all forms of crime. On the contrary, violent crimes such as domestic abuse and homicides have risen dramatically with drug offences going through the roof also. During the first lockdown (March – June 2020) domestic abuse ended up accounting for one in five crimes during that period while drug offences climbed by 30%. The rise in drug crime is especially worrying, as lockdown has caused a litany of turf wars to break out in the country between competing drug gangs who – since being cut off from their international smugglers due to travel restrictions – have now turned to recruiting locally for dealers, smugglers and muscle; bringing ever more people into the dangerous narcotics black market. While police are busy breaking into people’s houses, arresting old ladies for protesting and shouting abuse at people simply for going for a walk, innocent people are being terrorised by violent husbands and drug gangs. As David Matthews points out, the neighbourhood drug dealer has essentially gone about his normal business during lockdown while the rest of us remain under house arrest. Currently, drug dealers are more of an essential worker than you are.
One might accuse me of sensationalism and claim, with a degree of optimism, about this all being ‘solved’ when restrictions begin to ease. But considering the last time restrictions were eased, police inevitably found themselves stuck between dealing with rapidly rising post-lockdown crime or regulating what Coronavirus rules are still in place. And if one considers the recent history of the British police, I wouldn’t advise putting any money on them dealing with the former. After all, many of the police have shown great enthusiasm in enforcing the laws of the Coronavirus Act and, in turn, have revealed themselves to be as horrible and unreasonable as some of our leftist adversaries have proclaimed them to be.
The Scottish Police stand out to me to be particularly despicable anarcho-tyrants, with one now infamous and harrowing incident standing out amongst the rest; where police officers broke into a family home and arrested those inside because there were ‘too many people’ in the house. Even though many were outraged at the event – with various civil liberties organisations running to the defence of the family – the police got off without so much as a smack on the wrists, while the adults in the family got fined for ‘abuse’ and ‘assault’. To make matters worse, this event only occurred because a fellow anarcho-tyrant, this time from amongst the ordinary population, snitched to the police despite having no grounds to or evidence that this family was breaking lockdown rules. This pandemic has not just revealed the true nature of our state, our elites and our police but the true nature of our fellow Britons also; their authoritarian streak becoming finely tuned during this pandemic.
Worse still is the Sarah Everard vigil which quickly descended into a violent mess of arrests, fighting and screaming thanks to the Metropolitan Police; with Assistant Commissioner Helen Ball giving a contemptible statement claiming that the police “absolutely did not want to be in a position where enforcement action was necessary” and that they broke up the vigil “because of the overriding need to protect people’s safety.” Large sections of the right-wing commentariat are lambasting the Met for hypocritical policing but this criticism rings on deaf ears and fundamentally misses the point. The Met engages in hypocritical policing because that is the system we currently live under – anarcho-tyranny. The police refuse to deal with genuine threats to the public like BLM pulling down statues and terrorising London for weeks on end because it is hard to control; a peaceful vigil predominately attended by young women, on the other hand, is very easy to control. It is that simple. Furthermore, the politicians and journalists crying about this event need to shut their mouths as they are the reason this tragedy was even able to happen in the first place. Politicians don’t get to simultaneously vote for continuing lockdown – which inevitably curbs our civil liberties – and then cry about the police enforcing the rules they voted for; the same goes for lockdown fanatic commentators and journalists who have helped the state construct this atmosphere where fear and hypocrisy rule. Many in these camps seem to be rapidly developing amnesia; forgetting that they are the reason all this misery, abuse of power and statism is taking place. Do not let these anarcho-tyrants forget what they supported.
Regarding the police, they remain the greatest paradox of modern Britain as they are both terrifying and pathetic. One minute they’re forcefully breaking into your house, harassing your grandparents and confiscating all of your kitchenware; the next minute they’re off to twerk in a rainbow patterned skirt in the middle of their nearest cosmopolitan hellscape. While many relish in hilarity at the current state of the British police it is no laughing matter; especially for the ordinary citizen who is the one who suffers the most under the anarcho-tyranny state. In all honesty, in their current form, the police are not our friends nor are they worthy of our support as it seems increasingly impossible that the rot of anarcho-tyranny will ever be decontaminated from the uniforms of our police. If the last year of draconianism, abuse of power, hypocrisy and out and out brutality from our police hasn’t changed your views on them even a tiny bit, then I am certain that nothing ever will. And while this may be difficult for conservatives to hear – it is ultimately true.
This pandemic has only exacerbated this rot in our country because, like during all crises, the state and its allied elites have been allowed to expand, enrich and entrench their power. Worse still, the public seem to be none the wiser about it, our media none the smarter to understand it and our politicians none the braver to address it. Woe betide what elements of Coronavirus draconianism will remain with us post-pandemic. But while this pandemic continues, one fact remains abundantly clear – anarcho-tyranny reigns supreme.
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To be Anti-Refugee is Un-BritishBy Mike Bevan — 4 months ago
Compassion for asylum seekers is a traditional British value – a real British value, not a Quango-invented value like ‘tolerance’ that wouldn’t be out of place in any Western European country.
Britain’s reputation as a friendly haven for the oppressed is wholly based in historical fact – and I don’t mean “we found the skeleton of a 15th century black man in Cornwall, and that’s why unfettered channel boat crossings are a good thing”.
Now to be clear: a refugee is not a migrant. Most channel crossers are economic migrants looking for wealth, which I am not here to defend nor discourage. When this article says “refugee”, I am referring to those fleeing war or persecution, such as Ukrainian civilians, Iranian political opposition, or Uyghur Muslims from China. And while I do not advocate handing out visas to all 21 million stateless refugees in the world today, it is my opinion that we should take in many more than we currently do – regardless of any policy towards other forms of migration – and make the United Kingdom the best and most welcoming place in the world to be a refugee. Not just for altruistic reasons either – we can greatly benefit from this arrangement.
From 1828 to 1905, at the height of her imperial power, the number of immigration restrictions the British Isles had was zero. The borders were completely flung open, allowing anyone who was downtrodden, oppressed, or impoverished the chance to live a life of freedom and security behind the protection of the Royal Navy.
This was a point of pride to the Victorians – the Times newspaper wrote in 1858;
“Every civilised people on the face of the earth must be fully aware that this country is the asylum of nations. We are a nation of refugees. There is nothing on which we are prouder and more resolute.
All Europe knows and respects the asylum of these isles.”
The first wave of refugees from the continent – since the Huguenots – were the French clergy and nobility fleeing the Reign of Terror. Around 4,000 arrived in 1792, settling mostly in Soho and other affluent areas of London. They were forced to undertake manual labour for the first time in their lives, working as tailors or publishers. Due to a lack of Catholic churches in London at the time, Anglican churches such as Saint Pancras welcomed their brothers in Christ and offered church facilities for Catholic masses and burials. No fewer than eight former French bishops are interred at the church.
The Duchess of Gontaut wrote of her arrival to England;
“Arriving at Harwich…made my heart beat faster in the hope of a better future. It was a happy premonition because from that moment we experienced the good and loyal hospitality of the English.”
Successful integration of refugees is surprisingly easy – give them the chance to work, and access to resources. Economic deprivation is the number one predictor for whether or not an ethnically diverse neighbourhood is socially coherent, but current policies make this nearly impossible; Refugees in Britain must wait 12 months after arrival before they have the right to employment.
Labour is the world’s most valuable commodity—yet for 12 months, a refugee is forced to relax in a four-star hotel and eat free chef-prepared meals, all paid for by taxpayers. The faster a refugee can obtain a job, the faster they can be turfed out of hotels and become productive members of society.
The Victorians were so committed to the policy of free asylum that they were even willing to create diplomatic scuffles to uphold it.
In the mid-century came the socialists. Marx, Engels, Kropotkin and co. all escaped harassment from tyrannical European governments by making the free and prosperous shores of Britain as their home.
In 1858, a collection of these continental anarchists based in a London lodging house plotted a failed assassination of Napoleon III. One man who stood trial for this conspiracy was French exile Simon François Bernard. The French government demanded he be punished – but the British press were steadfast in their opposition to a conviction. Partly because it would undermine the policy of open borders (some things never change), but also because anything that frustrated our eternal rivals was surely a good thing.
While I don’t suggest we invite any Islamic terrorist groups to set up an embassy in Fitzrovia, we can learn from this example to forge our modern-day policy on political refugees.
I and many readers of The Mallard yearn for a restoration of Britain’s prestige on the world stage, a way for our now Empireless nation to regain that global reach. So what could be more of a leverage over our enemies than aiding those who are consistently a thorn in their side?
Several Hong Kong dissidents such as Nathan Law have already fled here and continue to campaign for a free Hong Kong from the safety of the UK. We could extend this to other Chinese, Iranian, or Russian political dissidents, and be the first port of call for Governments-In-Exile. Provided that they do not actively harm British or Western interests, we can only gain geopolitically by being the prime destination for exiled activists the world over.
The open borders policy came to an end at the start of the 20th century. The last wave of refugees were impoverished Poles and Jews escaping persecution from the Russian Empire. One such refugee named Israel Lipski was hanged in 1887 for the murder of a woman in Whitechapel, and the story gave rise to the notion of “pauper aliens” committing crimes, stealing jobs, and pushing up rents.
The Conservative government of the day proposed the first restrictions on immigration in 1902. But they weren’t completely without opposition – it was none other than Winston Churchill who said these new rules were;
“a loathsome system of police interference and arbitrary power that would harass the simple immigrant, the political refugee, the helpless and the poor…This country has so greatly gained from the old, tolerant, and generous practice of free entry and asylum. This law is expected to appeal to insular prejudice against foreigners and racial prejudice against Jews.”
And Churchill was right. Even today (despite eye-catching headlines) the effect refugees have on the crime rate is low. During the 2015 European migrant crisis, Germany took in over 1.4 million refugees – yet by 2019, their crime levels had fallen to the lowest in thirty years.
And if a refugee does commit a crime, surely the only person who should be punished is the guilty refugee – not the thousands of other innocent, law-abiding evacuees with whom they arrived alongside.
Nonetheless, the Aliens Act introduced the first restrictions in 1906; immigrants were required to prove they could support themselves financially, not be “liable to become a charge upon the public rates” (i.e. disabled), and have a clean criminal record.
But this was not the end for Britain’s role as an international safe haven for the oppressed. During the Great War, almost 250,000 Belgian refugees were given shelter on these isles, all housed and fed for the duration of the war despite the hardships and food shortages suffered by the nation. The generosity displayed by the British is illustrated in the 1916 Fredo Franzoni painting “Landing of the Belgium Refugees”, showing dozens of boats carrying huddled masses landing in Kent. They are being welcomed by a large crowd led by the mayor of Folkestone. To the side, a nurse stands ready to tend to the sick, while two children bear welcoming gifts. A British ensign flies prominently from one of the ships.
Many of the Belgians were housed by individuals volunteering a spare room. Others were housed in purpose-built villages ran by the Belgian government-in-exile, where inhabitants used Belgian currency and spoke Flemish. Despite some local objections to these ethnic enclaves, within a year of the war being over, 90% of refugees had returned to Belgium. Their only lasting impact being a few memorial plaques, and Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot – who was based on a Belgian that Christie had housed during the war.
If we could do it in 1914 during total war, we can certainly do it today.
Granted, the cultural differences between a Brit and Belgian are smaller than a Brit and a Syrian, or an Iranian, or a Venezuelan. But those of you who are worried about the social and ethnic composition of Britain needn’t worry about refugees – like the Belgians, the average refugee spends less than ten years in exile before returning to their native country, and only the most protracted conflicts such as in Afghanistan or Vietnam produce refugees who stay longer than 20 years. Those who choose to stay permanently are clearly integrated Anglophiles who prefer British society over the land most of their compatriots have since returned to.
Overall, while you and I may disagree on general high or low skill migration into Britain, it’s quite clear that compassion for asylum seekers is a long-forgotten tradition that we should reclaim. We can learn from the 19th century to build an asylum system that is both economically and geopolitically a benefit to us – as well as, of course, being the moral thing to do.
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