European Jobs For British Fascists

The poster demands “British jobs for British workers” and it shows three smiling men in hard-hats urging people to vote BNP. But the “building workers” in the ad – which is being driven up and down the country on a BNP vehicle called the “Truth Truck” – are not even British. They are American models who posed for a general photo agency shoot in Portland, Oregon, in the United States. Another shot in the same set shows a black man working alongside white colleagues – but the racist BNP didn’t use that one… ~ Exclusive: BNP poster campaign for British workers uses American actors, Gary Anderson, Mirror, May 16, 2009 [Tip of the hard-hat to Sina]

‘British Jobs For British Workers’ (Gordon Brown) is soon expected to become ‘European Jobs For British Fascists’ following the June 2009 elections to the European Parliament. Elections will be held in the 27 member states of the European Union (EU) between June 4–7; 736 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) will be elected by proportional representation to represent some 500,000,000 Europeans — “making these the biggest trans-national elections in history”.

Shazam!

If the British National Party can gain at least four seats at the talking shop in Brussels, the European far right would also likely be in a position to initiate a formal voting bloc in the Parliament — a situation briefly realised in early 2007, before it disintegrated (BNP could be at heart of far-right EU group: “Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National Party, is poised to become a key figure in the creation of a new far-right group in the European Parliament”, Bruno Waterfield, Telegraph, May 15, 2009).

Searchlight zine has launched a campaign against the BNP called ‘Hope Not Hate’. As part of this campaign, a video has been released:

The video resurrects Griffin’s polemics from the mid-90s, and prior to efforts to mainstream his and the BNP’s message (Griffin became leader in 1999).

Antifa England has responded to the Hope Not Hate campaign by pointing out the perils of electoralism, and rejecting ‘New Labour’ as an alternative to the BNP. Both the BNP and New Labour are accused of using racism and xenophobia to attract support — the attraction of the BNP among working class whites a product of New Labour’s record of anti-working class policies, corruption, and pandering to xenophobia. In summary:

Antifa are not calling on people to vote Labour or ‘Respect’ to stop the BNP, we are calling on people to boycott the whole election charade, and to get out onto the streets and combat the rise of the BNP in the only way that matters – by Direct Action.

We can understand the contempt people rightly have for the mainstream political parties. We can understand why white working-class communities feel abandoned and alienated. But a vote for the BNP is NOT a so-called ‘protest vote’, it is a vote for FASCISM.

Don’t believe ANY of their lies.
Don’t play the politicians’ games.
Don’t vote – Organize!

Independent Working Class Association

In some respects, this debate recalls that of an earlier era, and one which accompanied the dissolution of ‘Anti-Fascist Action’ (AFA: 1985–2001). In fact, this ‘debate’ had further precedents among anti-fascists in the UK: see ‘Filling the Vacuum’, Fighting Talk, No.12, November 1995; ‘The Acid Test’, Fighting Talk, No.10, January 1995; and elsewhere in the pages of FT.

One of the principal contributors to AFA was ‘Red Action’, a small Marxist party segments of which evolved into the International Wing Chun Academy International Window Cleaning Association International Writing Centers Association ‘Independent Working Class Association’ (IWCA), initially formed in October 1995 and registered with the state in September 2001.

Some years ago I started blogging about RA… actually: “Trawling the web for information on the split in Workers Power — yes, I’m a Trainspotter; how many members did they have in Australia? 4? 5? 6? — I somehow or other stumbled onto Red Action. Their site declares that it was suspended in 2004 — but gives little explanation”:

As of Friday 24th 2004 this forum (as part of [a] general site re-vamp) will no longer be updated.

In due course, it is intended that a substantial amount of fresh material will be added to the site and a search-friendly archive will be created containing some of the more informative and memorable threads.

I found the following on a blog: Working class?!, Mike’s Little Red Page, July 25, 2005:

I’m posting rather a lot about the Oxford branch of the Independent Working Class Association at the moment, but they seem to want to force themselves on the public’s attention. Their latest smart idea is to sue Labour Councillor Bill Baker for defamation for suggesting they are associated with extremists…

In reality:

Leaflet slur costs £15,000, thisisoxfordshire, January 5, 2006:

…Part of an apology to the IWCA said: “In this article Bill Baker wrongly alleged the Independent Working Class Association has links to extremist anarchist groups and violent Irish nationalist groups, and that the organisation has tried to hide those links behind legitimate political activities.

“The Labour Party and Bill Baker accept that these statements are incorrect and without foundation and would like to apologise for the distress and embarrassment which the article has caused.”

After some initial success, at least in electoral terms — successes which no doubt worried Labour — the IWCA’s star has dimmed somewhat. In its place — that is, in part, competing for the same working class political loyalties — arose first the ‘Socialist Alliance’ (1992/2001/2005), then ‘Respect’ (2004).

The short-lived socialist electoral ‘alliance’ underwent various splits, with the role of the Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP) being key, just as it was in the SA’s replacement Respect. Respect too split, with one branch continuing to campaign under that brand, while the other — dominated by the SWP — became first the ‘Left List’ and now the ‘Left Alternative’. A sense of the fortunes of this last in the series of the SWP’s front groups may be gained by a quick glance at its empty website. LA’s last hurrah — see Victory for Dick in Londinium, May 4, 2008 — appears to have been failing miserably at council elections last year; a failure which may be usefully contrasted by the BNP’s (relative) success.

Respect has decided not to compete with the BNP in the North West, directing its support to the Greens candidate (Euro Elections: Respect in the North West says unite red and green to stop the BNP, Dr Kay Phillips, National Chair, Respect, May 4, 2009). On a spotters’ note, other parties standing candidates include No2EU and the Socialist Labour Party.

With Labour having more or less purged the ‘left’ / the ‘left’ having abandoned Labour (while at the same time Labour has embraced neo-liberal / neo-conservative policies deeply injurious to working class interests), in the absence of a clear working class alternative the BNP looks set to make hay in Europe. See : A ‘perfect storm’ for the BNP to make gains in the European elections?, Nigel Farndale, Telegraph, May 17, 2009:

…There are no protesters today, thanks presumably to the secrecy. Councillor Robert Bailey, an ex-Royal Marine, is the BNP candidate for London. “Most of us are ex-Labour,” he tells me. “The Labour Party used to stand for what we believe in. Now, no way. It’s not just immigration that has changed; it’s our way of life. We’re becoming a Third World country in Europe with no influence, no power and the people not knowing anything about their own history.”

…It is predicted that the BNP may win not only its first seat in the European Parliament but, because of the proportional representation system of voting, as many as seven. To win in the North-West it needs just 8 per cent of the vote, barely 1.5 per cent more than it got in 2004. Griffin is calling it a “perfect storm”. He believes that the combined effects of the credit crunch, the perceived lack of control over immigration and, most significantly, the perception that all of the mainstream parties are corrupt – thanks to the MPs’ expenses scandal – will mean a big turn-out for the BNP. “Journalists are going to say it was a protest vote: well, that is fine with us,” he tells me later in the day. “The British public have a lot to protest about.”

…[The BNP] is also, fundamentally, Old Labour. It would take the railways back into public ownership. It rejects globalisation. It believes in strong trade unions and that as much of industry as possible should be owned by those who work in it. In these respects it reminds you that Oswald Mosley left the Labour Party in 1931 to form the party that ultimately became the British Union of Fascists because Labour had rejected his plan to defeat mass unemployment with a programme of public investment. It is no coincidence that campaign leaflets in white working-class areas describe the BNP as “the Labour Party your grandfathers voted for”.

…I’ve been trying to work out how the BNP is different from the National Front of the Seventies and the British Union of Fascists in the Thirties and the answer is that it is now playing the victim. The white working class it represents felt superior before. Now they feel inferior and victimised…

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2021 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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20 Responses to European Jobs For British Fascists

  1. Darrin Hodges says:

    OMG! STOP THE PRESS! BNP USES STOCK PHOTO! END OF THE WORLD IS NIGH!

  2. @ndy says:

    Yeah. A party that constantly craps on about the moral imperative of being and buying and celebrating and employing British uses Yanks and Italians in its advertising — whatever happened to ‘British Jobs For British Workers’? Brings to mind the party selling muzak featuring songs by Bobby Sands and other Republican anthems; or…

    In any case, you’ve missed the point.

  3. Denise says:

    Any updates on how Darrin’s drive to create a mass movement for Australian whites is coming along @ndy?

  4. uni twat says:

    It’s pretty easy to understand why neither the BNP nor Darrin Hodges see a problem in using such stock images in their propaganda. If they were to take photos of themselves and use them in such campaigns, the public would be repulsed before they even realised how disgusting the ideas of such groups are. Both Darrin Hodges and Nick Griffin are as ugly as their putrid ideologies.

  5. Tony says:

    I think the BNP have it correct in this instance. Just sit there and think about it: a foreign force of migrants, voluntarily, settle in to a suburb and lowers the living standards – there by making life more difficult for the locals. In this case, the locals identify themselves as White European’s; therefore, acknowledge the problems faced by the White working class – a class who have been rejected by leftists – calling for a united coherence between the fellow Whites. To make things straight, Andy, the Left have ignored the White Workers for so long, I know this through a simple conversation. If the Left are ever going to win back the support of White workers, they need to start meeting their needs.

  6. Ana says:

    Postal Workers Refuse to Deliver BNP Leaflets

    “Postal worker stood firm against management intimidation at the Bridgwater Sorting Office, Somerset this week as bosses attempted to force them to deliver British National Party (BNP) leaflets in the run up to the forthcoming Euro elections”

    http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/05/430417.html

  7. Darrin Hodges says:

    Perhaps they used the stock photos to avoid having British models hunted down and attacked by antifa?

  8. Henry says:

    What you anti-BNP idiots fail to realise is the BNP dont dislike foreigners they dislike immigrants so using American actors is not even an issue its just another anti-BNP smear campaign before the EU elections.
    And if you think that story about foreign actors thats been in the papers will stop the BNP geting MEPs you are deluded.

  9. Paul Justo says:

    Some builiding workers! Has anyone ever seen a hard hat that tightens up at the front like the bloke on the left is wearing?

  10. Ana says:

    You are full of shit Darrin

    http://www.stopthebnp.org.uk/uncovered/uncovered.htm

    Several BNP members have put this racism into practice:

    Former National Organiser Richard Edmonds was convicted for his part in a vicious bottle attack on a mixed race couple in a pub in East London 1993

    BNP supporter Stuart Kerr was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for firebombing an Asian shop in Chichester, Sussex

    BNP leader Nick Griffin was convicted of incitement to racial hatred in April 1998

    London nail bomber: David Copeland The BNP organiser for Waltham Forest, Alan Gould, was convicted of racially abusing people in a pub in 2000

    Former BNP member David Copeland was sentenced to six life sentences after planting bombs in London. He wanted to start a race war.

    On other occasions, the BNP has glorified racist attacks. In 1991, the BNP newspaper gloated after several BNP supporters stabbed an African immigrant at London Bridge station. The victim had his “kidney surgically removed”, the paper boasted. In the same year, the BNP leadership whipped up a racist riot in Bermondsey, London, and led an attack on an anti-racist meeting that was protesting against the BNP headquaters in Welling. Thirteen people needed hospital treatment.

    A BNP presence has almost always culminated in “race hate”. When Derek Beackon was elected as a BNP councillor in Millwall, racist attacks in the area soared by 300%

  11. Liam says:

    Tony: migrants do not lower standards of living – unscrupulous (in the most case; probably white!) bosses do. There is no essential difference between the “white” working class and the working class, and to suggest that “whites” have been neglected by “the left” is such a huge generalisation, and a grossly inaccurate one at that.

    Ana; Thanks for that bit of news, very inspiring.

  12. Darrin Hodges says:

    Ana, what has that got to do with the truthful assertion that antifa would hunt down any British based models the BNP would use?

  13. Ana says:

    don’t try & come across as a victim clown, when your mates have a penchant for racist violence

  14. Darrin Hodges says:

    Dodge, duck & weave, you’d make a fine Establishment politician Ana. Nobody is playing the victim here Ana, you just cannot admit that the antifa would hunt down a British model and harass them, can you?

  15. @ndy says:

    I suspect that antifa are the least of a British model’s worries.

  16. Ana says:

    Music of Resistance – Race to fight racism

  17. Pingback: Fascists, Ferrets and How To Stop The Far Right. « ModernityBlog

  18. RockStar says:

    Well, I am a member of the BNP and I am half Italien [sic]. The party embraced me and they will help this country out of the hole it[‘]s going to fall in if we don[‘]t sort it all out. Nationalism is the oldest form of religion, just read [H]omer[‘]s references to the wars of [T]roy and you will see that heros [sic] will die to protect the rights of their country. That is all I ask, to protect my country, my state. [T]he land from [sic] which I was born. Many have forgotten the simple fact that we have a right to protect and without that right the lion looses [sic] its teeth…

  19. @ndy says:

    Which half RockStar?

    The bottom or the top?

    The Iliad, however, resists simple-minded conversionary efforts by Hollywood. Its political and social complexities have made it a text that consistently has attracted progressive critics of culture. Simone Weil wrote in L’Iliade ou le poème de la force (1939) that the Iliad was a poem of power, an observation that sheds political light on how it lends itself to re-interpretation as a film of force with the matrix of Bush culture. In Vision of Tragedy, Richard B. Sewall interpreted: “Simone Weil, whose essay on the Iliad is unsurpassed in its insight into the tragic aspect of Homer, shows the world of that epic as dominated by force, blind and mechanical, which reduces men to things and destroys them indiscriminately. . .”

    Like a Donald Rumsfeld press conference, in the Iliadic world authority does not suffer contradiction lightly: no Homeric hero asks Job’s radical, rebellious questions. “We men are wretched things,” a submissive Achilles says wearily to Priam, “and the gods who have no cares themselves have woven sorrow into the very pattern of our lives.” [Iliad, Book 24] Weil argues that, although the question of justice “enlightens” the Iliad, it never “directly intervenes in it.” “In the end,” writes Weil, “the very idea of wanting to escape the role fate has allotted one — the business of killing and dying — disappears from the mind.” In Weil’s interpretation, the Iliad is the picture of the triumph of liberal democracy, a false neo-Hegelian conceit concerning progress towards the end of history.

    Horkheimer and Adorno took up Homeric narrative in The Dialectic of Enlightenment (1947) to argue that while cultural fascists might give nominal honor to its stories, “They scent out a democratic spirit, characterize the work as redolent of seafarers and traders, and condemn the Ionian epic as all-too-rational expository narrative and a mere communication of conventions.” They contend “The fashionable ideology which is deeply concerned to liquidate enlightenment, unwittingly reveres it, and is compelled to recognize enlightened thought even in the most distant past.” In their reading, Homer provides a basic text of European civilization that attests to the inter-linkage of myth and enlightenment, contrary to post-Renaissance strong-arm political philosophies that employ classical mythology to rationalize hierarchies of greater and lesser beings, of physical strength over weakness. And it was Hannah Arendt who suggested in The Human Condition (1958) that the genius of the Iliad lays in its celebrating winners and losers alike. Unlike Arendt’s reading, Troy and Bush culture entirely reject the Iliadic tradition towards any purpose of social reconciliation.

    With a rich range of re-interpretive possibilities for the Iliad and social readings available for Troy, Wolfgang Petersen chooses to leave them all vacant, translating the epic into a bourgeois melodrama and cash bonanza.

    ~ Troy, The Chronicles of Riddick, and Bush Culture, Tomasz Kitlinski and Joe Lockard, Bad Subjects, 2004

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