The KKK took my perspective away

Two recent articles from Crikey on the KKK and FDB!

The KKK took my perspective away
Cam Smith
Crikey
March 12, 2007

The news last week that a Ku Klux Klan group (The White Legion Knights of the KKK) was attempting to recruit in the Queensland city of Toowoomba via a leaflet campaign has been blown somewhat out of proportion and is just a little bit pathetic. Surely a proper Invisible Empire would never do anything as tacky as sticking propaganda (American propaganda! Very UnAustralian) under people’s windscreen wipers. It’s just not the done thing.

The Mayor (Dianne Thorley), the local members (Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane and Queensland Attorney-General Kerry Shine) and Premier Peter Beattie have all come out slamming the pamphlets. Just how worried should they actually be?

Let’s put this group into perspective. There’s already a KKK group operating in Australia — they’re called the Invisible Empire of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan of Australia and the organisation is run (Grand Wizarded) by a bloke called David Palmer, a retired electrician who divides his time between doing his bit for the incredibly beleaguered white race and sinking beer at his local RSL. Unlike these classless Toowoomba sheet-heads, he reportedly does much of his recruiting the old fashioned way: in mental institutions and jails.

The crowning achievement of the IEKKKKA has probably been the establishment of their 100% Aryan Breeding Program, wherein women wishing to ensure the racial integrity of their offspring can (for a small fee) do the “horizontal Austrian polka” with Dave or one of his kameraden. To date there have been no takers.

We are possibly not dealing with the cream of the crop of Australian society. The fact that Dave completely disavows any connection to this new group and disparagingly refers to them as “the Toowoomba Centrelink Mob” speaks volumes as to just how insignificant they are. If these losers can’t even organise themselves some jobs, how are they expected to organise a cross burning (it’s actually harder than you’d think).

The authorities should definitely keep an eye on them (in case they should grow beyond what we estimate are 5-10 members), but as Dr Mark Copland from the Catholic Social Justice Commission has pointed out, there are actually more important racial issues in Toowoomba for Di, Ian, Kez and Pete to be dealing with. Perhaps the shocking state of Aboriginal education and health should be prioritised above the activities of a few losers in bedsheets.

Cam Smith – poseur or van Tongeren?
Christian Kerr
Crikey
March 13, 2007

Crikey made an error of judgement granting space to the self-styled anti-racism campaigner Cam Smith yesterday, since Smith is either one of two things: a poseur or an advocate of violence.

Smith says he represents an organisation called “Fight Dem Back”. Fight Dem Back has a website, but like most groups on the political fringe there appears to be little more to the entity than some self-selected spokespeople and a message.

In Fight Dem Back’s case, that message is ambiguous.

The organisation’s homepage talks about its “opposition to all groups who would seek to propagate racial hate and division”.

It provides chapter and verse on some strikingly obnoxious groups and individuals who do this – people such as Jack van Tongeren, the white supremacist who served 12 years in prison from 1989-2001 in Western Australia for firebombing Asian businesses.

Nowhere, however, in all the detail on its site, does Fight Dem Back precisely spell out how it expresses its “opposition” to racism.

Violence plays no part in political decision making or debate in Australia. We recognise this. It is why we send people like van Tongeren to jail.

Yet Fight Dem Back explicitly meets violence with violence in its name. Does it also do so in its activities?

It might not have all that many. Smith and his confreres may do little more than run a website and occasionally offer opinions to hard-pressed, naïve or gullible journalists and editors.

If this is so, then they are nothing but… puerile political poseurs. Political poseurs who exploit decent minded people’s repugnance at racism to gain themselves media notoriety.

And if Fight Dem Back uses or condones violence, then Cam Smith is as offensive to our democracy as Jack van Tongeren.

Either way, Crikey should be embarrassed for giving him a platform.

Yes, how embarrassment…

It’s difficult to know precisely what Kerr was thinking when he wrote his rejoinder to Cam; perhaps he wasn’t doing anything else on Sunday afternoon. Or maybe he’d had a bit too much to drink. But who’s Christian Kerr anyway, and why has he bothered to produce such a grotesque caricature?

To begin with, it’s obvious that he’s a Christian: Christian is, after all, his name, and such a conclusion simply follows from Christian the Christian’s impeccable logic regarding the violent implications of the name Fight Dem Back!. Kerr is also, according to The Age, a former Tory party hack and corporate propagandist (Susan Brown, ‘Crikey! Name behind column comes clean on dishing dirt’, July 4, 2004), having been employed by “a string of federal Liberals and a premier”, including Senators Robert Hill and Amanda Vanstone and former South Australian premier John Olsen.

As for Kerr’s diatribe… more later.

However Crikey readers may respond to Kerr’s smears, its publication has certainly been warmly received on Scumfront Down Under. Thus David Innes (‘Baron von Hund’) exclaims “In your face Cam”, and extends a note of appreciation to the neo-Nazi New Right group for bringing the article to his meagre attention span. Note that, like most groups on the fringes of the far right, New Reich is little more than a platform for the articulation of bizarre racist conspiracy theories, in this (nut-)case, those produced by one Welf Herfurth: a former member of the German neo-Nazi NPD and One Nation, and current member of the Australia First Party and Blood & Honour Australia.

Responding to an enquiry by neo-Nazi Carl D. Thompson (‘Wodensvolk’) as to Cam’s identity, Canadian racist Frank! White! informs Thompson that Cam is “the loon who goes by the name Dr. Sexwithmeninheimer”: hurr hurr. Ever-helpful, convicted neo-Nazi criminal Ben Weerheym (‘Patriot Alliance Downunder’) points interested readers in the direction of his blog, where he has published a profile of Mr. Smith, further stating that “He is a deviant peice [sic] of slime that likes to joke about homosexual rape, illicit drug-taking and sodomy”, and requests further information on Cam “so that we can help parents that live in his vicinity know about this creep so they will be able to be vigiliant [sic] when letting their kids go to the local park in Collingwood”.

Hmmm, yes.

Luke Connors (‘young_soldier’) joins in the critical chorus, augmenting Kerr’s not-quite-accurate description of FDB! by further claiming that it’s composed of middle-aged men who “spend their time trying to rev up 16 [year old] kids who hate their parents and John Howard to attack people they don[‘]t like”; which is an odd remark coming from someone who, as ex-spokesperson for the now-defunct Patriotic Youth League, celebrated the racist pogrom in Cronulla in December 2005, claiming that “about 15 [PYL] members handed out literature to the Cronulla crowd, as well as buying drinks for some participants”, and who eagerly predicted further outbreaks of racial violence in the Melbourne suburbs of Heidelberg, Preston, Reservoir and Springvale.

Bonehead James Newman (‘JN’) — like Welf Herfurth, a member of both the Australia First Party and Blood & Honour Australia, and most notorious for uploading to Scumfront celebratory videos of the racist pogrom / ‘White uprising’ in Cronulla for the enjoyment of other racists and fascists around the globe — concludes that, while he and other racist schmucks have long-maintained that FDB! are “idiots”, “apparently mainstream people do too”. Well yeah… if Kerr can be considered ‘mainstream’, as well as representative. Time will tell who, if anyone, wishes to join Kerr and Scumfront in their condemnations. Indeed, perhaps Kerr would like to supplement his accusation of ‘violence’ — on the basis of the occurence of the word ‘Fight’ in the group’s name — by also highlighting the belief among the fine folks at Scumfront that FDB! is the product of a Jewish conspiracy to keep The White Man down?

By crikey, that would be interesting.

PS. Fear and loathing of Jews is “Official Stormfront Policy”, and those who question it are not welcome, no ifs, buts or maybes. “Chief of Staff” ‘jack_boot’ lays down the law:

Insofar as [Scumfront] has a policy, or platform, that platform consists of three major planks:

First, we share a racialist vision for the general prosperity, security, and betterment of our people.

From that commitment flows our most important message: we name the Jew as the deadliest, if not the only, threat to our existence as a race. Forge this message in titanium…

This is one of the reasons why neo-Nazis such as David Innes, his brother Paul Innes (‘Steelcap_Boot’), David’s partner and Scumfront Down Under moderator Lilith Petersen (‘Lilith’), Carl D. Thompson, Ben Weerheym, Dr. James Saleam (‘radnat’) and James Newman (Australia First Party), Luke Connors, and all the other racist losers find Scumfront to be such a happy home.

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 2020 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
This entry was posted in !nataS, Anti-fascism, Media. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to The KKK took my perspective away

  1. Dr. Cam says:

    My mum says I’m embarrassing too. She can\’t take me anywhere.

  2. Hahaha! Campbell Smith you [sexy] dickhead!

    Now even more people can laugh at you!

  3. KinkyBoy says:

    Dr Cam is Bad Boy Bubbie ?

  4. Dr. Cam says:

    It was pretty funny.

  5. @ndy says:

    When Cam gets mad, he puts it down on a pad; to give us something that we never had:

    ======

    March 14:

    ======

    Cam Smith, self-styled “Nazi-hunter superhero and debonair gent-about-town” from anti-racist group FightDemBack writes:

    Re. “Cam Smith – poseur or van Tongeren?” (yesterday, item 15). “Crikey made an error of judgement yesterday in publishing an incredibly poorly researched piece about FDB by self-styled “national affairs editor” Christian Kerr, since Kerr clearly had no clue what he was talking about. I’m not sure how things work in the high end of town, but in the real world it is actually possible to be successful as political activists without resorting to violence. Christian, let me set your mind at ease: Fight Dem Back! neither participates in or condones violence of any kind. I know we have the word ‘fight’ in our name (it comes from an anti-fascist dub poem by Linton Kwesi Johnson) but if you really find the word that disturbing in a political context you might want to have a whisper in John Hewson’s ear. FDB operates primarily as an information gathering and dispersal service. We monitor the activity of white supremacist/neo-Nazi groups online and via a network of infiltrators and informants and then pass that information on to interested parties: affected community groups and businesses, law enforcement, and where necessary, the media. We also conduct such nefarious activities as assisting young people who have gotten too deep into the far right with extricating themselves from that scene safely without suffering the brutal consequences one usually encounters when attempting to leave a gang. We do this because we believe that shining a light on political cockroaches curtails their activities, and that this makes the community a safer place. So far we have enjoyed a reasonable level of success in this endeavour. If all we were interested in was “media notoriety” I’m sure it wouldn’t be difficult to attain it in a manner which didn’t involve the slight annoyances of regular death threats and having our work and home addresses sent around to people with histories of violence. What’s the pay like as a Liberal spin doctor anyway? The question that needs to be asked is: Was Christian too lazy to find out the truth about the manner in which we conduct our affairs when he set off on his wee rant, or did he deliberately decide not to? We’re really not that difficult to get in touch with. Either way, Crikey should be embarrassed for giving a platform to such poorly researched bullsh-t.”

    ======

    The yuppie Kerr’s falsifications also prompted this response on Crikey:

    ======

    Darryl Rosin writes:

    Christian Kerr once again proves his inestimable worth with his remarkable analysis of a hitherto unknown aspect of the 1993 federal election. If I recall correctly, Christian was working for the Federal Liberal Party at the time they were explicitly mixing politics with violence in their “Fightback” policy platform. Did it also in its activities? When did Christian and the Liberals publicly apologise to the Australian people for their disgusting attempt to mix politics and violence? It may be that Kerr and his fellow travellers do little more than write on a website and occasionally offer opinions to hard-pressed, naïve or gullible editors. If this is so, then they are nothing but puerile political poseurs who exploit decent minded people’s interest in public affairs to gain themselves media notoriety. Should not Crikey also be embarrassed for giving people like him a platform?

    ======

    March 15:

    ======

    FightDemBack’s Brian Stokes writes:

    “Christian Kerr got it completely wrong on his criticism of FightDemBack! (Tuesday, item 15) – but far be it from Kerr to admit it. In reply to FDB founder Mat “Darp” Henderson’s letter of objection to Kerr and Crikey, in which Henderson made egregious error of admitting to being a student without simultaneously letting Kerr know that he’s a rather mature aged student, Kerr sends this little bit of uninformed personal abuse:

    “As I suspected. Student Trots who are either too young or or too dumb to know where the road to the gulag starts giving free publicity to scumbags. You poor, thick kids.”

    Wrong yet again, Christian. The more I read of Kerr, the more I think that Australia First’s Herr Doktor Jim Saleam’s fingerprints are on at least one of Kerr’s coffee cups. It’s Saleam who screams stuff at us like “TROTSKYITES!!” (and it’s really funny when he does, too). It’s Saleam who spreads defamatory libels about FDB being “criminal” or “violent”. It’s Saleam who can’t tell the difference between FDB and the youth group “Resistance”. Now we find Kerr parroting ALL of (racist website) Stormfront’s, Saleam’s and Australia First’s talking points about FDB. Just who is in Kerr’s bookmarks and dinner “A” list? Incidentally, while Mat “Darp” Henderson IS a student, he’s not 18. We ain’t kids… I’ve just turned 45, which makes me two years older than Kerr himself. In fact, the average age of the FDB core membership is a little closer to 35. We are not spring chickens as a rule – and a lot tougher to fry up than Kerr may think. What I find particularly amusing is that Kerr finds it convenient to personally abuse Mat, who identified himself as a student, from which Kerr took the notion that Mat must be a bit wet behind the ears (he’s not…), but the chickensh-t won’t take me on. I’m still waiting for Kerr to reply personally to my complaint. Kerr is just far too precious to be told he’s just flat wrong by someone who is clearly neither a student (of any age), a “Trot”, dumb, or in any way a “kid”. No matter how dead-to-rights you nail Kerr, he’ll never admit he blew it – and mother, did he ever stuff it up this time. Christian Kerr’s got no one to blame but Christian Kerr for failing to do any research on FDB whatsoever before spewing off about us – and not just once. We’re still waiting on an apology from Kerr for his patently false and defamatory insinuations that FDB is in any way “violent” in our anti-racist activism.”

    ======

    Iain Lygo (occasional researcher for FDB) writes:

    “After reading Kerr’s article about FightDemBack, it is seriously time for the powers-that -be at Crikey to consider his future. Kerr’s complete lack of research resulted in a jackbooted article full of “if”s, “but”s and “may”s. If Kerr has any evidence of violent activity by any member of FDB, then publish it without the weasel words to protect him from a defamation suit. Otherwise an apology is in order.”

    ======

    John Kotsopoulos writes:

    “Leave Christian alone. He has been through it all and knows what he is talking about, most of the time.”

    ======

    And finally, Christian Kerr fightsdemback and writes:

    “It was nice to hear from Cam Smith and the other two members of FightDemBack swearing that they’re gentler than Gandhi on a go-slow – particularly when you know the lyrics of the song they took their name from, Linton Kwesi Johnson’s ‘Fi[te] Dem Back’:

    “We gonna smash their brains in
    ‘Cause they ain’t got nufink in ’em…”

    Racists, pretty obviously, aren’t the only thick b-stards around.”

    ======

    Tee hee… tee hee hee.

    *sigh*

    Yuppies like Kerr invariably end up looking like the fools that they are when they allow their enormous arrogance to get in the way of discerning which ‘facts’ might best be used to malign whichever group happens to have appeared on their radar that morning. Thus, not only has Kerr demonstrated that he knows precisely nothing about FDB! — well, aside from the fact that Cam Smith occasionally writes on its behalf, and the lyrics to the song from which it took its name — he also obviously knows precisely nothing about LKJ, his role as a musician and writer in the anti-racist movement in the UK, or the social and political conditions which produced this movement and which inspired LKJ to write songs such as ‘Fite Dem Back’ (*Forces of Victory*, 1979). Or as another verse in the same song records:

    “Some a dem say dem a niggah haytah
    An´ some a dem say dem a black beatah
    Some a dem say dem a black stabbah
    An´ some a dem say dem a paki bashah”

    More to the point, in addition to racist members of the general public — and, of course, the police — not only did groups like the National Front and the British Movement *say* this shit, they *did it* too. Or as The Specials sang in another song, ‘Concrete Jungle’:

    “I have to carry a knife
    Because there’s people threatening my life
    I can’t dress just the way I want
    I’m being chased by the National Front”

    It would be pointless to provide any great detail regarding this period, or the numerous incidences of racist violence it witnessed, as Kerr obviously knows little and cares less. But something of the flavour of the times may be found in Alexis Petridis’ article ‘Ska for the madding crowd’, The Guardian, March 8, 2002, which looks at how another song by the band, ‘Ghost Town’, came to be a No.1 hit in 1981:

    ======

    “…The roots of Ghost Town go back further, to the Specials’ first major UK tour. In 1978, still a good time local reggae band, they had wangled a bottom-of-the bill support slot with the Clash. In Bracknell, however, the gig was disrupted by neo-Nazi skinheads allied to rabble-rousing street punks Sham 69. Losing out at the polling stations thanks to the rise of Margaret Thatcher, the National Front had instigated a programme of “direct action”, infiltrating football hooligans and skinheads: “bovver” at gigs and matches was the far right’s new route into the headlines. Earlier in the year, seig heiling skinheads had caused £7,500 worth of damage at a Sham 69 concert at the London School of Economics.

    “In Bracknell, the Sham Army turned up, got onstage and attacked the lead singer of Suicide, the other support band,” says Dammers. “That was the night the Specials concept was born. I idealistically thought, we have to get through to these people. It was obvious that a mod and skinhead revival was coming, and I was trying to find a way to make sure it didn’t go the way of the National Front and the British Movement. I saw punk as a piss-take of rock music, as rock music committing suicide, and it was great and it was really funny, but I couldn’t believe people took it as a serious musical genre which they then had to copy. It seemed to be a bit more healthy to have an integrated kind of British music, rather than white people playing rock and black people playing their music. Ska was an integration of the two.”

    A year after the Bracknell gig, the Specials’ eponymous debut album set out their stall. The cover featured the band in the mod uniform of tonic suits, loafers, pork pie hats. Inside, simplistic pleas for racial tolerance were set to the choppy beat of ska, popular with the skinhead cult in the 1960s. The album dealt in social realism. Despite their complaints that London was burning with boredom, most punk bands had retained a whiff of metropolitan glamour. Terry Hall’s vocals, however, described a grimly provincial world of shopping precincts and shabby ballrooms in a deadpan Coventry whine. The album also displayed the band’s ability to define the preoccupations of post-punk youth – the NF are on the march, teddy boys and punks punch it out, “boot boys” lurk in the shadows, waiting to strike. It was a talent that would come to its fullest fruition on Ghost Town.

    So would Dammers’ plan to create “a weird new music that was a Jamaican-British crossover”. He had begun experimenting with the band’s trademark ska sound on their second album, More Specials. Not every member was enthused by Dammers’ attempts to fuse reggae with easy listening. “He wanted to do this sort of muzak thing, put drum machines on everything,” says Byers. “He’d been right up to that point, but I started to think he was losing it a bit.” Rows erupted in the studio. “It was horrible,” says Lynval Golding, on the phone from his home outside Seattle. “Every day somebody left the band.”

    The acrimony spilled over into live performances. During one show, Byers smashed his guitar over Dammers’ keyboard. There were further pressures on the band. Golding was seriously injured in a racist attack in south London, an incident that inspired Ghost Town’s horrified B-side, Why? Dammers refuses to discuss the band’s drug use in depth, but admits there was “too much drink in the dressing room, too many drugs”. He also admits the Specials’ penchant for inviting their audience to invade the stage during concerts had got out of hand: “At first it started off, it was a great laugh: we’re all in this together, there’s no stars here. Then gradually, people were getting onstage two numbers into the set and it became tedious and dangerous. In the end, the whole audience wanted to be onstage, the PA stacks were swaying and it was dangerous, but you couldn’t stop it. We told the audience it was too dangerous and they wouldn’t have it and it ended up in a massive ruck with the bouncers…”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/friday_review/story/0,,663359,00.html

    ======

    Class dismissed.

  6. weez says:

    And finally, Christian Kerr fightsdemback and writes:

    “It was nice to hear from Cam Smith and the other two members of FightDemBack swearing that they’re gentler than Gandhi on a go-slow – particularly when you know the lyrics of the song they took their name from, Linton Kwesi Johnson’s ‘Fi[te] Dem Back’:

    “We gonna smash their brains in
    ‘Cause they ain’t got nufink in ‘em…”

    Racists, pretty obviously, aren’t the only thick b-stards around.”

    Well, that\’s us told. 🙄

    In his kkklever and snappy response, Kerr doesn\’t bother to offer any proof that FDB have ever been violent; all he does is repeat the same stupidity he\’s been gigged for and again does the \’thick\’ ad-hominem tapdance. Face it, Kerr got suckered by neo-nazi propaganda. Is MediaWatch still handing out that Jim Ball prize?

    When responsible journos get caught out publishing unreasearched, unsubstantiable bullshit, the honourable thing to do is apologise and hope the public will forgive and forget. No apology- no forgiveness, Mr Kerr.

    Indeed, like Lygo, I want to see Kerr cut the transparent and pusillanimous linguistic avoidance of prima facie defamation- and really have a proper go.

    Kerr leaves the issue- and himself- under a pile of bullshit, his credibility completely destroyed.

  7. @ndy says:

    A yuppie with access to a keyboard and a platform from which to spout is rarely a pretty sight… but often confused for a parody. If Kerr were a Christian — which he is; after all, it’s his name, right? — he’d turn the other cheek.

    Silly-billy.

  8. deadreds says:

    You have no right in commenting on […] Christianity you godless anarcho-communist wanker!

  9. dj says:

    I’m sure the Christian God will stop Andy if he deems it necessary.

  10. Luke says:

    I wonder if that means that deadred has no right in commenting on “godless anarcho-communism” too.

    Nice work, @ndy. I’m not sure what I find more satisfying; the thoroughness of your blogs – or the laughter gained from reading some of the replies.

  11. sparx says:

    “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”
    – Anne Lamott

    “You can safely assume that you’re anti-spam system is bullshit, @ndy.”
    – sparx

  12. sparx says:

    …that is, “your” anti-spam system. ahem.

  13. @ndy says:

    Ahem. I go talk person make computers-talk, maybe revolutionise system. ’til then, me say sorry.

  14. wally says:

    Looks like FDB is just another radical racist violent speaking Blog for people of a different view. The difference is FDB violently persues [sic] thier [sic] individual opponents rather than just enter the forum and place thier [sic] view, FDB appears to be a violent, vendettas [sic] driven, blood lust, vengence [sic] driven terrorist forum, which needs to be dealt with by the Government. The Duck is a wanker btw. I have never seen such a disgrace in Australia as FDB, well maybe the Green Left, Indymedia, Quadrant, oh ok there are many groups attempting to deform and fabricate Australian history, culture and tradition, these scumbags are just another one of the also rans who will be forgotten, when they grow up and realise how stupid they were in thier [sic] misguided youth. Try assimilation and intergration, it works m[u]ch better than threatening the life of opponenets [sic] who don[‘]t share you[r] stupid ignorant and wicked views. FDB are true perverts in every sense of the word.

  15. @ndy says:

    I couldn’t have said it better myself wally.

    Rahowa!

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