PSSST

Pssst, wanna buy a service,
It’s all up for grabs today,
Don’t even have to tender,
We’re giving it all away.
Everything is on the list,
Meet us in committee room,
Or down the boozer, capiche?
Can’t make it? See you on Zoom.
Knock down prices, going cheap,
Now’s the time to flog it off,
Whilst it’s reeling on the rocks,
As it deals with virus cough.
Nobody will protest it,
Pass new laws to mask the stink,
Even let you keep the name,
National Health Service Inc.

Harry Rogers, In the Red Bedroom, 12th April 2021

NEW AUTUMN SHADE IN STOCK

Like lichen rampant on prunus hedges,
Union flags flutter from public poles.
Relentless theft of enemies clothing,
Plus non stop foment of fear and loathing,
Stream of consciousness policies spew forth,
Articulated from our leader’s cuff,
Bright blue passports for pints in British pubs,
Refugees stockaded in dank wormwood,
Children with prospects? Who the fuck are they?
Surely we should treat all kids just the same?
September, seemingly, so far away,
Pregnant with austere fiscal promises,
As next budget pushes non block chainers,
Over post furlough unfungible cliffs,
We’ll revel in long covid new normal,
Jabbed full of fake algorithmic dream memes.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 25th March 2021.

CLARITY IN DARKNESS

Recorded in my bed, used duvet as a percussion instrument.

Dial down the democracy dimmer switch,
Strange conundrum as the light fades away,
In the darkness clarity increases,
Horses, dogs, armour clad riot police,
Brought sharply into crystal clear focus,
Batons weilded against young activists,
Young non violent direct activists,
Clubbed as they sat, serried, outside cop shop,
Provoked beyond anger to protection,
Erupts into the mayhem of riot,
Such smooth precision duly delivered,
Gift wrapped to home secretary’s doorstep,
For her rehearsed despatch box diatribe,
Power of darkness now simply blinding.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 23rd March 2021

LIAR IN A WHITE GOWN

Hancock has his half hour in a lab gown,
War declared on obese covid victims,
Health workers slapped in face with one per cent,
After the claps, the rattles of the pans,
We expect heroes to be tret better.
Paltry sums for those who give us their all,
Hancock, white gowned, as faux as faux can be,
Trumpets his victory delivered by
Those workers he insults with every word.
Soon road map will lead through gate to “normal”,
Beaches will fill with holiday fakers,
Throughout summer freedom ramps up and up.
No places left for crap leaders to hide,
We know they’ll take health workers for a ride.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 5th March 2021.

BUDGET?

Level up, level down, red wall, blue wall,
Tax up, tax down, oi lend me half a crown,
Put a levy on, hoover up some crumbs,
See the CEOs twiddling their thumbs,
Extend the furloughs, varnish over cracks,
Bring back two for one, pork pies and Big Macs,
Keep Matts’ health contract, no-one has read it,
Deny his big lie, forget he said it,
Big up the vaccines, claim a victory,
Consign the mistakes into history,
Tell all the people first thing in your head,
Soon life starts again, don’t mention the dead.
But the truth is, none of this is over,
In fact we’ll find it’s only just begun.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 3rd March 2021.

STARMERVILLE

Welcome To Starmerville

There is no bliss in ignorance,
Not there in Starmerville,
Diktats reign down from up above,
That’s life in Starmerville,
Their world, filled with indifference,
Rules all in Starmerville,
They’ll never move from hate to love,
Not there in Starmerville
Rules we once made now count for nought,
Torn up in Starmerville,
Forget about democracy,
It died in Starmerville,
Imposed candidates without say,
Lord it in Starmerville,
Nobody listens to the left,
Today in Starmerville,
You can’t speak out, say how you feel,
Not there in Starmerville,
There’s only room for patriots,
Out there in Starmerville,
Wrap yourself up in union jacks,
That’s it in Starmerville,
All my comrades have had enough,
Pissed off in Starmerville,
Times can move on, our hope dies last,
Fuck you in Starmerville.

Harry Rogers in the Yellow Room, February 25th 2021

FACT OR FICTION?

These are dangerous days,
When it’s so fucking hard,
To distinguish the line,
Between ficticious truth
And new facticious lies.
Questions posed, never read,
Surveillance plutocrats
Reshape human demands,
Influence how we think,
When we think, what we think,
Soon to be where we think.
They rule us by knowing
Who we are, what we like,
What we do, where we go.
We happily tell them
Everything, every day,
Every time we log on.
But it is not the tech,
That fucks up all our lives,
It’s Capitalism
In the most vicious form.
Those who buy our data,
Who mine our very lives,
Undo democracy,
Destroy skills and knowledge,
Plough into the unknown,
Elevate the richest,
Denigrate the many,
Google server goldmines,
Rich veins keep on giving.
Fill our heads with nonsense,
Encourage Q-Anon,
Keep our minds occupied,
Whilst we stop watching balls.
This social media,
Filled with fact…. or fiction,
Will it last forever?
How will we ever know?

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 19th February, 2021

ACID REIGN

Shadow ministers tout final lockdown.
We climb up another steep learning curve,
All last year’s lessons junked, lost, forgotten.
False flags unfurled, run atop Tory poles,
Rabid ultra right calls for total freedom,
Open everything up asap,
Bring back good old British normality,
Let rip the remnants of economy,
Ignore the science now we’ve all been jabbed,
It’s over, we’re back, it’s tickety boo,
Johnson guffaws as he gives good news, but
There are no easy edges in the dark,
Acid reign corodes, slow, but constantly.
We fall, memoryless, into the void.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 15th February 2021

CANNON FODDER

Trumpite cannon fodder lost to reason,
Geed up by this joker without lipstick,
Await their fate in the criminal courts.
Dark full length crombie, tiny leather gloves,
Clenched in wild mid air gesticulations,
Urgently preaches his dark denouement.
Suitably wound up his rabble march off,
On Capitol Hill they do his bidding.
The Don watches Fox from the dark, white, house
As he polishes favourite driver,
He sees the futile maul come to a halt,
Where they soil the nest of democracy,
Before they return to their hotel lairs
Boldly exultant even as coup fails.
Who knows if this is the start, or the end?
At Mar-a-Lago Don”s golf cart awaits,
He waddles obscene from fairway to green,
He blames his poor chip shot on his caddy,
Seventy four million folk believe
That this orange pultroon is their daddy.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 13th February 2021

WISHLY THINK OF CHANGE

Scream as those bent politicians
Run everything into the ground.
Education reduced to CV ticks,
Wishly think of what we would change,
But it is not what we would do,
It’s more like, how can we do it?
Truth, hard to tell in these strange days,
Untruth, the enemy of truth,
Finds easy traction every where.
Plutocrat vampires suck life blood
From us whenever possible,
Deeply infect society
With overt acquisitiveness,
Before they cash in, whilst crashing
All long term hope, for short term gain.
The what, the where, the when, the why,
Important things to consider,
Above all this though comes the how,
It’s time for us to organise.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 12th February 2021.

IMAGINATION ABOVE FEAR

“We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable. So did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art, and very often in our art, the art of words.”

– Ursula Le Guin

Fear trumps depression and drives us into acceptance of a completely dystopian reality.

Everywhere we turn there are people who are weighed down by depression.
The Covid-19 pandemic means this state of being affects more people than usual.
There are many aspects/types of fear, currently the world is consumed by mass paranoia induced by the media and the politicians over the Covid-19 pandemic.
Twelve months of twenty four hour rolling news largely dedicated to spreading news that points up the failure of most Western capitalist governments to get a handle on what was a forewarned inevitability has ramped up serious levels of mental health problems.
There are different things to be frightened of as a result of this virus and the confusion that surrounds it.
Covid and death,
Poor Government,
Capitalist Greed,
Fake news,
Forced isolation,
Further destruction of certainty,
Social unrest,
Populist exploitation of fear of the other,
The fear of being alone,
Euphoria deliberately manufactured for political purposes leading to dashed hopes again and again.
How do we overcome the underlying fear?
Build in your mind the future you want,
Find others with similar interests,
Where ever possible work with those on the points where your interests cross.
Be ever aware that there is much to do to build a better world.
Envision that world as a place beyond war, inequality, Racism and Injustice.
The name of that place is civilisation.
The raison d’etre of civilisation is the emancipation of mankind beyond the shackles of false political ideologies and artificial religious prisons.
Many people talk of human civilisation as if we were already civilised. We’re clearly not.
How can we call ourselves civilised when, as a species, we continue to resolve disputes through primitive ritualised military means?
How can we claim to be civilised when there is such gross inequality between the richest and the poorest?
A world where multi millions of the population live a totally precarious existence, never knowing where their long term future lies, where their food will come from, where they will live, and where often it is dangerous to think for oneself and question the status quo, is not a civilised world.
A world where human rights are trampled on by rogue Randian states run by criminal power mad sociopaths is not a civilised world.
A world where capitalism is the dominant arbiter of power and economic exploitation is not a civilised world.
A world where the United Nations fails to ensure justice for the global oppressed is not a civilised world.
What we need to strive for is global emancipation for all, the utilisation of the common wealth of knowledge and skills for the betterment of all, only then can we claim to have achieved Civilisation.
To build for that dream of civilisation is one way to overcome state induced fear and depression.
There is a better world, if we can imagine it we can build it. Let’s go forward and build a socialist civilisation together.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 11th February 2021.

IT’S NOT AS IF NOBODY KNEW

It’s not as if nobody knew,
Brokers vaunted their shorts with glee,
They pimped profits stolen from you
In newspapers, and on TV
Decked in golden debauchery,
Luxury yacht marinas locked,
Gated to keep the people out,
Economy clock still Tik Toks,
As we have fun truth comes clearer,
Deflation dies, inflation rise,
Super crash moves ever nearer,
Once digital traders fall down,
The rich will all have fled your town,
Only crypto currency left,
Paper money gone up in smoke,
Pandemics come, but when they go,
That’s when start of darkness begins,
We stay in doors, take eyes off ball,
The biggest crooks have robbed us all,
Chickens struggle home to their roost,
There’s no economy to boost.
Nobody remembers too much,
About manufacture, and such.
Education is frowned upon,
Celebrities run marathons,
This ain’t no time to run in parks,
We won’t see much, when it’s too dark.
Who knew? Deep down all of us did.

Harry Rogers, In the Red Bedroom, 10th February 2021

HEY, VINCE, GET OFF MY RADIO…

Vince said some people have got to be rich,
It’s just part of the system we live in.
This then is one of the many ploblems,
The way in which millions accept this.
Schools don’t, on the whole, teach the history
Of how the landed gentry got their land.
Or rather how the gentry stole our land.
Tribal leaders through murder and pillage,
Through naked, homicidal, plundering,
Robbed common people of the common weal.
Later they fought badly amongst themselves,
Which led to creation of bandit kings,
Who in turn passed laws to enclose more land.
All this led wealthy landowners to trade,
In what they wanted, to make more money.
Slavery brought extremely high returns.
For two hundred years these faux aristo
Bullies plied their crass,miserable, trade.
Through countless generations a system
Built mainly on exploitation and fear
Made creation of inequality,
Pain, and misery inexorable.
This is a crime against humanity,
Kings and theives do not have a divine right
To plunder, kill, nor to emiserate.
This system, this capitalism stinks.
Vince and his neo Liberal cronies,
Spout Lockean bullshit all over town,
Whilst Leviathan thrives inside their heads.
Well Vince, people’s eyes have sprung open wide,
Some people don’t have to be rich at all,
Not if we don’t bloody want them to be.
So take your new book, stick it where it hurts,
Get the fuck off my morning radio.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 7th February 2021

CORRECT LINE?

Is there such a thing as the correct line?
I hear comrades everywhere debating.
Nothing seems to waste so much precious time,
As socialistic procrastinating,
Loudly in lecture halls and student bars,
Ideas clash about what is to be done,
Some come to blows over dead superstars,
A few look upon this as good clean fun.
Meanwhile transnationals laugh up their sleeves,
They plough on, hardly believing their luck,
Not caring what any “lefty” believes,
We fight each other. They love it. We’re stuck.
If we only, just once, joined together,
Perhaps we might win, once and forever.

Harry Rogers, Pencnwcau, Aberbanc, 15/09/17

THIRD MILLENNIUM

Tell me what happened to the world we knew.
We partied hard in nineteen ninety nine.
We thought the future would be better new,
That everything was gonna work out fine.

The man sold us rhetoric filled with hope,
We really thought a change was gonna come,
We sucked it in like it was real good dope,
Rose colouring the third millennium.

Lift those tinted glasses,
See the new world for real,
Three drones flew every hour.
Signed sealed and delivered,
DARPA kept on growing.
Man child Trump don’t change things.
Put America first?
He only made things worse.

As the tweet laden crisis sharpened up,
Propaganda mongers spouted their lies,
Worldwide politicians supped the same cup,
Whilst peddling their shared bent alibis.

So far don’t like the third millennium,
Can’t stand hand wringing armchair narcissists,
Nor the paranoid neo Nazi scum.
Who’ll help us all if nobody resists?

Hold on, what’s this we see?
Amongst the advertising,
Out on the streets a sea,
In flowering uprising,
Brave people, young and old
They march together, strong,
Their story will be told,
Peace, justice, love, belong.

Harri Rogers, Aberbanc, 23rd January, 2017 Revised 28th January 2021.

WALK BY THE ISIS….

Walk by the Isis,
On warm summer day,
Down to swimming hole,
Swing out on the rope,
Drop into the pool,
Nineteen eighty four,
Know that I’ll never,
Forget this moment,
Water grips so cool,
Exhilaration,
Swim upstream aways
Pull new goggles on,
Watch Perch fins flutter,
They hang suspended,
In exposed tree roots,
Beneath cut away,
River bank channels,
Where they wait for prey.
Friends frolic in pool,
Perch watch on, unmoved,
Meanwhile, in Orgreave,
BBC News team
Shoot famous footage,
Which they called battle,
After fake edits,
Where state violence,
Still waits for justice.
I remain mindful
Of events that day,
Seems sometimes these things,
Just don’t fade away.
D’you know what I mean?

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room, 24th January 2021.

OLD BILL PHILOSOPHY

Never a day did I understand why
In Hendon your average new copper
Was taught to refute Karl Marx and reply
With arguments put forward by Popper.
The state must have been really full of fear,
Afraid that they might come a cropper,
Paranoid about revolution near,
Injected philosophical stopper.
Still stirs strong wind of transformative change,
Pendulums swing, seeds fall from the hopper,
Sprout new shoots in far corners, green and strange,
Where plods on beat hear latest jaw dropper.
Someday the force will become a service,
For all the people, not just the churlish.

Harry Rogers In the Red Bedroom, 22nd January 2021

I BEG YOUR PARDON?

Two million dollars, it all goes away,
Crimes, misdemeanours, so long as you pay.
A message to Rudy, just give him a shout,
One of his goons can help you sort it out,
Rampant corruption, it is so obscene,
Give four five money, he’ll wipe your slate clean.
Like Nixon he’s gone, he had to conform,
Says he will be back, in some shape or form.
Proud boys and boogaloos strut on the street,
They threaten still in the teeth of defeat,
Yesterday Joe put hope above their hate,
Decency rises, it’s almost too late.
Starlings murmurate above confusion,
Have all the fakes gone? Was it illusion?

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 21st January 2021.

HOPE IS A’GLIMMER

Hope fills our lights a’glimmer
As we get up from our knees,
Darkness cannot get dimmer,
Something floats upon the breeze.
Comes a realisation,
To bring true socialism
All socialists have to do
Is behave as socialists
With each other, comradely.
It’s time to ditch lifelong scores,
Not to scratch old battle sores,
Randian fascists, outdoors,
Ignore all of our old laws,
Don’t give society figs,
Only individuals.

Harry Rogers, In the Yellow Room, 19th January 2021.

AUSTERITY DEJA VU

Austerity, default mechanism, Used by capitalism to maintain
Status quo, where the wealthy stay wealthy,
And the rest of us have to pay the bills.
Sharing concepts alien to the rich.
Neo-Liberal adage is writ large,
“What’s yours is mine and what’s mine is my own”.
Pandemic expenses rob one and all,
Reality shows who’s going to pay,
Austerity laws soon back now to stay.
We must prepare for the battle to come,
A harsh world awaits, we see it elsewhere,
Plutocrats aren’t philanthropic people,
The idea of welfare means nothing to them,
The law of the jungle where strong survive,
Randians and crooks are running our lives.
Get ready, new normal won’t be jolly,
We’ve got to struggle like never before!

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow room, 19th January 2021.

RIVERS FULL OF PIKE

Minnows keep dying, swallowed up by pike
Who believe freedom means do what you like.
Rivers are swollen with pike on the feed,
Predators strip hope from people in need.
Sickness is rampant, leeches feed off it,
Out of death rattles they make a profit.
From test, track and trace that does not exist,
To anti vaxxers who peddle scotch mist,
Lynch mob storm troopers on Capitol Hill,
Those venal racists, whose flags make us ill.
Twitler is happy now his days are done,
This monster pike will still shout out he won,
His rag bag army, the Trump lunatics,
Believe it’s seventeen seventy six.
As Joe sweeps by in his new armoured car,
Some say that this is a re- run Weimar.
Let’s hope it ain’t and sanity returns,
Don’t make us watch as America burns.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 18th January 2021

IMPEACH THE ORANGE

Impeach the orange,
Drag it through the courts,
Squeeze until pips squeek,
Get all juicy bits,
Peel open in dock,
Probe segments through pith,
Take the wrung out husk,
Remove zest for life.
Comb through plantation groves,
Weed out fungal fruits,
Clean democracy,
Replant justice roots.
Check all mandarins
For cross infection,
Hope lemons and limes
Solve citric questions.
Crush the tangerines,
Ice up mint Juleps,
Brand new cocktail hour
On Capitol steps.
Slowly reawake,
Struggle up off knees,
Drink no more cool aid,
Avoid fresh DT’s.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 14th January 2021

HARD FALLS THE RAIN

This dog in a manger “free world” leader,
Deranged as he orchestrates true chaos
Whilst he persistantly tells the same lies.
He cares not about how many will die,
Such collateral damage is to him
A price worth paying to avoid justice.
Misled people believe propaganda,
Attend organised rallies and demos
As if invited to Sunday picnics,
Like Eisenstein’s sheep they devour fake manna
By the shovelful, minds totally blown.
What they fail to realise is how
Completely they have been rooked and gulled,
Stitched up to provide artificial fronts
For the death of their democracy.
They send millions of campaign dollars,
To keep the demagoguery afloat,
Soon will be a time no-one has a vote,
The confidence trickery still will shine,
They’ll believe the dictatorship benign.
Amerika televised great again,
I cry as I watch, and hard falls the rain.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 13th January 2021.

INSURRECTION MIND MASSAGE

Coups and insurrections, all plotted up
Over years of greasy mind massages,
Tweeted to hungry, fevered, acolytes,
All eager to have their prejudices
Polished, and honed, by the demagogue.
Lies are tools in this faux relationship,
Poisonous slogans, memes and banners,
Disseminated by Potus four five,
Infected social media for years,
Encouraged growth of nazi militia,
Fanned the flames of vile racist terror groups,
Stormed the Capitol in fake show of strength.
How strong the constitution? Can it hold?
How much storytelling is left to be told?

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 13th January 2021.

JULIAN

Julian, unconvicted journalist,
Banged up on his own in Bellmarsh chokey,
Solitary confinement, no contact,
Twenty three hours a day all alone,
His fellow colleagues in the media,
At The Guardian and the BBC,
Are all still at work, protected in law,
No charges for use of information,
From the self same sources as Julian.
Justice is nowhere seen to be done,
An innocent man treated as guilty
For doing his job when he showed us truth.
Torture is illegal, so judges say,
Yet when they use it we all look away.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 11th January 2021

HIDDEN BY THE SUN

Reality is hard to see,
So difficult to comprehend,
Every truth is blotted out
By solar energy beating
A cosmic swathe through retinal
Pathways, that obscure ability
To focus sharply on reason.
Brilliant scintillas block off
Actual dark, dreadful, pictures
Of the world seen by aliens.
A nightmare, hidden by the sun,
Glimpsed darkly, once in a blue moon,
During total solar eclipse.
Doesn’t last, lying sun soon shines.

Pencnwcau, 9th April 2018.

THE GHOSTS OF CORONA

Remember how last Easter
Ministers dilly dallied.
On yachts in Estapona,
Ghouls plotted up giant scams,
They haggled over lease terms,
Stock markets dipped, then rallied,
Adopted fake personas,
Rules changed by spad epigrams,
Dodgy test track trace geezers
Ripped off, then cashed and carried,
As the ghosts of corona
Haunted through videograms.
Yet still it is not over,
No-one dances in clover,
Vaccines stream in from Dover,
Too late to curb corona,
Many ghosts of corona,
Mourn the ghosts of corona,
Brand new ghosts of corona,
Cry for ghosts of corona.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 2nd January 2021.

ROBINS DON’T EAT BIRDNUTS

Goodbye cruel year, I’m glad you’ve gone away.
Out of my bedroom I watch as sparrows,
And blue tits, hop about in top branches
Of the red berried cotoneaster.
They queue in turn for the nut dispenser.
Sometimes they wait whilst two fat woodpeckers
Eat their fill in a highfalutin way,
As if the birdnuts are their property,
Strong arming smaller birds out the picture.
It’s not cold enough for the birds to eat
Any cotoneaster berries yet,
Perhaps in mid January they will.
Meanwhile hundreds of people die each day,
We’ll all be vaccinated come Easter,
So news editors blare in their headlines.
By then we might bury forty thousand
More coronavirus nineteen victims.
The madness of twenty twenty goes on.
Meanwhile a nuthatch arrives, pluckily
Shoulders greedy woodpecker to one side.
If we could emulate nuthatches,
And shove bent politicians to one side
Perhaps new normal might just be better.
Robin Redbreast watches and sings alone,
Spring ain’t far off, he doesn’t like bird nuts.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, December 31st 2020.

DANCE ALONG….

Dance along edge of disaster
In hobnail boots whilst stupified
On heady fumes of Brexit deal.
People seriously question
Parliament’s ability
To make a correct decision
About health and safety issues.
Tens of thousands dead so far,
Spreaders are rife across the board,
Schools, full to brim, collapse each day,
Staff and pupils self isolate,
Again and again and again,
Hospitals pushed to the limit,
Rules that change on weekly basis,
Track and trace that will never work.
False hopes are raised about vaccines,
Cabinet goons claim victory
Against covid before it’s won.
The whole charade was bound to fail,
From herd immunity madness,
All the way through on off lockdowns.
This is no disaster movie,
Families are losing loved ones,
Each bad move Tory shit mistake
Echoed by Starmer, fucking fake!
Pandemic news gets worse by hour,
All this shit to regain power.
Mutation infects really fast,
The race is lost, the future’s past.
Still at least we ain’t got no-deal,
The hero’s done it, so unreal,
Pupils will train to test themselves,
The troops stand by to webinar,
The time to save so many lives,
Came and went in the blink of eyes.
Health experts cry catastrophe,
Still we are nowhere near the peak.
One year on and nothing can work,
Except for a total shutdown
Of public, private, everything.
No more deaths, zero tolerance,
The only way we can survive.
Some say fears are paranoia,
Maybe Boris needs a lawyer.
I wrote of pandemonium,
Nine months ago, right near the start,
Now army stands in every city,
If I’m not wrong, there won’t be pity.

Harry Rogers In the Yellow room, 30th December 2020

SUNSETS AND GOLD ROSES

All those long lost, still, warm, thick summer days,
When butterflies struggle to flap their wings,
Ants retreat down into cool deep dug nests,
Birds shelter beneath leafy canopies.
When the air is as an old overcoat,
Engulfs your body, and fills up your lungs.
When thin clouds form above valleys below,
Imperceptible wisps and swirls at first,
Pressure rise and heat pulls moisture from earth.
As billowed white pillows turn darkest grey,
That thick earthy smell of rain on the wind,
Before the storm at the close of the day.
This is how it feels at this point in time.
Climate change, and economic failure
Joined in an obscene troilist tango
By a souped up, mutating, pandemic,
Are on a crash course to global meltdown.
This, the collapse of capitalism,
Was never forecast to happen this way,
Never in one almighty, chaotic,
Cataclysm of human stupidness.
Who can comprehend the sheer negligence
Of elitist global politicians.
The fucked anarchic internet structure,
Infects people’s minds with software somas,
Leaving them in thrall to techno wizards,
And their addictive artificial worlds.
Such atomisation negates action,
At the very moment when mass revolt
Is needed far more than ever before,
People are enslaved to online servers.
In the real world thin veneers peel away,
Destitute nouveau jobless, brought low by
Furlough, lockdowns, floods, fake news, false prophets,
Bamboozled by naked complexity,
Cannot survive without charged up smartphones.
When we should all be coming together,
Millions of thumb twiddlers clutch consoles.
Whilst public services vanish into
Private thiefdoms that suck our coffers dry,
Gamer junkies wind up almost insane,
Burnt out by adrenaline addiction.
Meanwhile, all around, the latest version
Of the new world order is fucked this time.
MSM looks like a Matrix remake,
All frontline services stretched to limit,
Yet, despite all of this, how we long for,
Stormclouds to break,rain and hail to cease,
That line of red tinged gold to appear on,
Horizon, and slowly explode into
Giant sunset where roses tinge with gold.
To attain this we need revolution.
Xanadu has to be more attractive,
Than Fortnight, Fifa, Scrabble or TikTok.
If we cannot tear these people away,
Sunsets and gold roses? Not anymore.

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room 25th December 2020.

NEW MUTANT DEAL DONE

New, last minute, mutant rabbit deal done.
Life in Boris’s hat unbearable,
By the time rabbit was finally pulled,
Mounted on stilts in order to stand,
Full blown brexiteers wept crocodile tears,
Drowned sorrows in lake of duty free beer,
Finshed off last of Bulgarian fags.
Nations Health wrapped in ragged union jacks,
The unkempt blonde smiles as he shafts the hacks,
Guffaws, as he searches cleverdick lines,
Jolly and jokey don’t wash anymore,
People ain’t stupid, they know the score.
Rain floods the valleys, free school meals don’t come,
Who gives a shit about deal getting done?

Harry Rogers In the Yellow Room, 24th December 2020

TOUGHEN UP.

Third Purge in my lifetime,
This one the biggest yet,
Fed by social media,
As bad as it can get?
Looks worse than the last one,
Driven on by revenge,
Ed defeated David,
That’s when the seeds were sown,
Progress got bloody nose,
Took challenge of the left
For granted. Arrogance.
No fucking chicken coup,
Nor David Cameron,
Could match rampant desire
For change for the many.
Shadowy Mandelson
With full time spad plotters
Worked day in and day out
To destroy the flower
Of Socialism
Before ere it could bloom.
Comrades toiled endlessly,
Despite hidden platoons
Of trolls, scabs and grasses,
Agent provocateurs,
Student politicians,
Wreckers, every one,
Sniveling party hacks
Determined that only
Their crew can occupy
The role prime minister.
Such arch conspiracy,
With all the media,
Bourgeois establishment,
Bellends in Parliament,
They plowed on with vigour,
Lies and accusations,
Grew bigger and bigger.
Lost second election,
According to their plan,
Led to a new leader,
A diligent law man,
A true knight of the realm.
He promised unity,
Stood proud on ten pledges,
Then, forensically,
Filletted every pledge.
Those hid in the shadows
Primed him with new weapons.
Anti semitism
Used to smear the decent.
Audacious, and corrupt,
Manipulate the rules,
Treat party volunteers
Like children and like fools,
Fake investigations,
Lead to faux suspensions,
No membership debates,
Discussed through CLPs,
People chat down the pub,
Share thoughts on Instagram,
Facebook, Twitter, TikTok,
Zoom, Youtube, and email.
This is now deemed fair game
By creepy party hacks,
Those bent apparatchiks,
Using techno weapons,
Dodgy Algorithms,
To sift through daily lives
For the slightest hint that
You might support the whip
Being given back to,
An honourable man.
Today it rained non stop,
Expect it will again
Tomorrow and all week.
In new year, after rain,
Peace and Justice flowers,
One door closed, another
Well and truly opened.
Toughen up, Toughen up.
That’s what Tony told us,
Bloody well toughen up…..

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 20th December 2020

YOU CAN NEVER KILL IDEAS

You can’t discuss anything that the party doesn’t want you to discuss.
You can’t discuss any decisions that say you can’t discuss what the party doesn’t want you to discuss.
How does it feel to have a non speaking part in an undergraduate student Amdram society production of 1984?
Labour party members are treated like children by the general secretary of the party.
This car crash is happening in slowmo.
It’s unreal, as if the extreme centre have forgotten the groundswell of support for Socialism when Jeremy Corbyn was first elected as party leader. The hundreds of packed public meetings, so full they had to have overflow meetings.
Where does Mandelson and his crew think all those comrades have gone?
They’re all still out there, wanting a party prepared to involve the whole membership in defeating the Tories.
These neo liberals in the PLP who failed to work for a Labour victory in not just one election, but, unforgivably, two general elections.
Twice these traitors allowed Tories back into power, snatching defeat from victory in an effort to defeat socialism.
What they fail to realise, as they cling desperately to the shrinking wreck of a Party Labour has now become, is this plain fact.
You can gag your own members, you can make false accusations, you can suspend people on spurious grounds, you can expel local volunteer executive officers, you can remove the whip from MPs but there is one thing you can’t do no matter how hard you try.
You can never kill ideas. Socialism is not one person, or a party membership, to be slaughtered on the alter of mammon.
Socialism is a belief system whose time is coming. Forward to Peace, Justice and Democracy in a Socialist Republic.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 16th December, 2020

UNTANGLE THE WEAVE.

Court cases loom as web tangles the weave,
One more incentive for people to leave,
Structure now ruined by those who deceive,
Forensic pragmatics no-one believes.
PLP head without body can’t breathe,
Gather together, there’s much to achieve,
The old way is dead, don’t turn back to greive,
Stand up united, our hearts on our sleeve,
We have the future, it’s ours to conceive,
We’re on the brink of a daring big heave.
There’s more to celebrate than Christmas Eve,
Together let’s fight for justice, for peace.

Harry Rogers In the yellow room, 14th December 2020.

TOXIC TEACOSIES?

Gunboats And Turkeys, No deals and lockdowns,
Large brown envelopes,
Toxic teacosies,
Oven ready myths, sovereign cock ups,
These a few of B.J.s favourite things.
Steal all the kudos for vaccinations,
Pose as the saviour, fake acclamations,
Bizarro Churchillian behaviour,
Snuffle and snigger, thrust trust far and wide,
Behind candy floss, things are sinister,
No warp speed bunkum from over the pond,
Brings back belief in our “Prime Minister”,
This blonde chimera should really abscond.
Cornish harbours ring with fishermen’s cheers,
Whelk loving boozers enlarge all our fears.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 13th December 2020.

KAFKA’S IN THE CORNER…..

Ordered satsumas, got easy peelers,
Mandarins much sweeter than sacharine.
Watch party leaders put out their feelers,
Search too hard for political vaccine.
Wail every day about democracy,
Rule we can’t discuss the freedom of speech,
Kafka’s in the corner, he brews the tea,
Can’t tell it like it is? Ain’t that a peach?
Meanwhile the Johnsons, Sunak and the Goves,
Filch gigantic fortunes from the kitty,
Whilst daily people catch Covid in droves,
As Brexit shorters start to rook the city.
This morning sparrows gorged on our berries,
Lorries queued up on roads to the ferries……

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 12th December 2020

COLD BLOWS THE WIND

Cold blows cancerous wind from evil den,
These are not lions, neither are they men.
Thugs besmirch our game whilst they boo the knee,
One more sick day in F Troop history.
Such cretinous shits, with borrowed salutes,
Who only act in packs, with blood on their boots,
Are vile, stupid, nazis through and through,
Coarse fronts, but we are many, they are few,
Fake football fans think they rule through fear,
With twisted logic, their pathetic cheer,
So last millennium, such stupid boys,
With clapped out chants and fat, farty faced noise,
Those swastika tattoos, that razored hair,
We never liked them, though they don’t, WE CARE.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 6th December 2020.

SING OUT LOUD

Sing out the good news, by this time next year
This could be over, we’ll live without fear,
It’s sad that many died along the way,
But we ordered vaccines, now you must pay.
All our Tory friends have done rather well,
Selling fake systems that took us to hell.
We’re halfway through what looks like a mad plan,
To turn UK into Afghanistan.
Convince the people its all their own fault,
Then turn on each other and pay them nought.
Across the pond it’s exactly the same,
Bent politicians high on the blame game.
No one can leave so don’t call a cab,
I Roll up my sleeve, prepare for the jab.

Harry Rogers In the Yellow Room, 5th December 2020

LOCKDOWN 1984 STYLE

Lockdown? Exactly what is a lockdown? It is a ubiquitous term used these days to cover a range of covid related rules and regulations. The trouble is, in my view, none of these are really lockdowns. I just read that all schools in the Cardigan area are closing down for a fortnight. This is an example of running around like headless chickens. Closing schools in a hyper local lockdown without implementing a full scale total lock-down with a complete strategic plan to ensure everyone is safe for a defined length of time is nuts. Zero Covid is the only way out of this tragedy. Ceredigion was considered the safest place in the UK vis a vis Covid-19 infections. Not any longer. Ceredigion County Council are blaming local people for spreading the virus through parties and raves. It’s depressing to watch politicians and their advisors flounder about, in the hope that the vaccines will soon come on stream, and bale them out. Teired systems have failed, the artificial lockdowns have failed, the firebreaks have failed. The waneing of immunity amongst those who have been infected by Covid-19 is extremely worrying as this means that people can catch it again, even after vaccination. Those countries that implemented severe zero covid lockdowns for short defined periods, such as Vietnam, have reaped great rewards in that their mortality rates are minute compared to here. Of course economies that put profits before people have seen ever increasing rates of infection and deaths. Parliament was warned but the political leadership decided to sit on the findings of an emergency planning exercise. How the Tories are still riding high in the polls after this total fiasco is beyond me. The use of the term lock-down is newspeak for cock-up, what we needed was a proper Zero Covid Strategy, its almost too late….. Sign this petition from People’s Assembly Wales.

Harry Rogers In The Yellow Room, 23rd November 2020.

WHIP AWAY!

In the party, the mighty party,
The liar sneers tonight,
Near the village, Westminster village,
The liar sneers tonight.
Hush the party, don’t fear the party,
The liar sneers tonight,
There’s no future, no Labour future,
The liar sneers tonight,

Whip Away, Whip Away,
Whip Away, Whip Away,
The leader sneers tonight.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 19th November 2020.

CAUGHT IN YOUR OWN TRAP

Stakes are raised, tension ratchets, Jezza’s back.
Group of MPs threaten resignation.
Forensic lawyer, now caught in own trap,
Can’t risk a legal investigation.
Tonight Labour politics lie shattered,
Allusions become stark reality
A number of banners now look tattered,
The ghost of Pasok brooks finality,
Big blue spad slinks away from Downing Street,
Number ten butternut self isolates,
Bowie like he reinvents with each tweet,
Starmer should have stormed through the bloody gates,
But he never seems to ram the sword in.
Sing out loud now, “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn!!!”.

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room, 18th November, 2020.

HOW FIT IS THIS BUTCHERS DOG?

Canst tell me, how fit is this butchers dog?
Eats scraps and trimmings of beef, sheep and hog,
Overfed heavy cur, can’t jump a log,
Sling him off a cliff, same as Gogmagog.
Another fortnight now squirreled away,
Ignore news media, tweet night and day,
Fat orange golfer has shewn him the way,
Don’t answer questions, faff, bluster, and play.
Buy time with new spads locked down in bunker,
Zoom hot and cold as enemies hunker,
Sack all and sundry, such a strong junker,
Quaff drafts of power, lurch ever drunker.
Hoards of people still say “He’s such a card!”,
In truth his new normal’s too fucking hard.

Harry Rogers, in the red bedroom, 16th November 2020

MONEY TREES AND ALGORITHMS

How is it possible to cut down saplings before they’ve even been planted? Well apparently in the magic money tree orchard in the realm of quantitative easing it is not only possible, but it is essential. Why is it essential? Because if you don’t keep filling the fruit baskets of capitalism then it will disintegrate. It may do this in any case if society as a whole fails to deal with the ongoing effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
It may be that the current round of lockdowns works perfectly, the R number reduces, hospitals are able to function effectively, employees go back to their old ways of working, bankruptcies are reversed, people stop dying, the pubs reopen and we all sing We’ll Meet Again as we get blue blind paralytic drunk at the greatest national celebration since the end of the second world war. In my view this is as likely as The Snowman surviving an after hours lock-in at the local sauna.
You can see the fear in Rishi Sunaks eyes as he extends his furlough scheme until the end of March next year. How can this possibly be enough whilst the schools are still open? Will the economy be able to expand in any meaningful sense over this winter? Entrepreneurs appear on our screens bleating about their pain with not a single word for those now imprisoned within an unfair and vicious benefit system who are expected to continue searching for non existent jobs on a paltry below subsistence income with no access to furlough schemes. Schools are moving into ridiculous scenarios where full time teachers are absent due to infection and year 12 and 13 pupils become increasingly indisciplined as supply teachers and assistants lose control. To call what’s going on a lockdown is absurd, viruses pay no heed to school gates, there is significant evidence from epidemiological experts across the globe that pupils are spreaders. It cannot be justifiable to put educational staff, pupils, parents and the public at risk.
We have to watch as the policies from the different governments in the UK chop and change with such a plethora of rules and regulations. Confusion has ruled throughout the life of the pandemic to such an extent that it’s hard not to believe that such chaos is deliberate.

Then, the spindly spad with the giant black rucksack hit the news again, briefly. The master of Tory mayhem has had some kind of falling out with the leader with the haystack on his head and 24 hours later Cummings went. Nobody it seems is indispensable, even if they believe they are.

Meanwhile, over on centre ground, a different bucket of mackerel sits on the table awaiting beheading and gutting. The Labour Party heirarchy have decided that now is the time to implode whilst they still have time before the next general election to sweep the mess under the carpet. The continued belief in the mythical broad church by so many Labour Party members is utterly astonishing. Let’s recap a little here. The election of Ed Milliband annoyed the extreme centre in Progress to such an extent that they deliberately hung him out to dry in the 2015 general election campaign. When he duly lost that election and resigned as leader they were cock-a-hoop and held a Progress leadership slate video conference which was disgusting. Of course there was no talk of the left as the Campaign Group were seen as an insignificant rump. When Jeremy Corbyn threw his hat into the ring he was not taken seriously. The centrists didn’t mount a serious campaign on social media, Corbyn did, largely through his son Seb, who managed his media campaign. Jeremy was the only candidate to put a join the Labour Party button on his web page. This was a master stroke as tens of thousands did and duly voted for him, leaving Mandelson and his Progress cronies in total disarray, and filled with rage at the failure of their slate. Clearly they were left behind by the Corbyn online campaign and the sheer volume of Jeremy Corbyn mass meetings across the UK. As soon as Jeremy Corbyn won the leadership the extreme centre began to seriously organise against him. Jeremy of course had hundreds of thousands of supporters and they duly defeated the chicken coup. The left in the party consisted of around four hundred thousand comrades, many of whom had rejoined for Jeremy. What I personally found difficult to come to terms with was the way in which Momentum set themselves up as the voice of the left and then behaved in an exclusionary manner throughout the following period of Jeremy’s leadership. Momentum never had more than thirty thousand members at it’s height and yet behaved as if they were the left in the party. This has led to a real problem both at leadership level and throughout the party in my view. Jon Lansman created a fiefdom that I and many other leftwing comrades just couldn’t buy into. Many local parties saw massive increases in membership levels but somehow that massive increase was not turned into mass action campaigns in local communities, too much attention was paid on how to fill positions within the party. The whole thing felt like a massive NUS conference. I won’t discuss my feelings about what happened at local level, suffice it to say I and others were never completely happy whilst we were in the party. What is happening now is tragic but not unexpected. It feels very similar to when the Militant Tendency and other left groups were expelled by Kinnock. I came back to Labour for Jeremy, who is an old friend and comrade of mine. He is being treated in an appalling manner both by Starmer and those “left” opportunists around him. There is no way back for him, and nor me. I am happy in Left Unity where we are small but solid in our politics. Now the attacks have widened, CLP Chairs and Secretaries along with leftwing branch activists are being suspended for daring to discuss Jeremy Corbyns suspension. The extreme centre are even now using keyword algorithms to trawl through leftwing Labour Party members social media accounts for evidence of support for Jeremy Corbyns position on anti-Semitism. Such chicanery is worthy of an insane headbang session in the oval office of the White House. I am not alone in my despair at the actions of the extreme centre in Labour. There will be a plethora of books written about this time I’m sure. Meanwhile I will work with like minded comrades to foster socialism in what time I have left. As for Cummings….. he’s yesterday’s chip paper already.

Harry Rogers, musing in the yellow room, 15th November 2020

FIREBREAK

A Passport to Cymru won’t get you here
The bridges are closed so don’t you appear
Stay back in England, across Irish sea,
Don’t bring the covid down here to me,
You’ll ruin the firebreak we’ve just been through,
We’ve done our bit, now it’s all up to you,
Put on your masks and keep off of the streets,
It’s time to get real, don’t shop now for treats,
But something’s not right, we’re led by a fool,
Why are our children still sent off to School?
Teachers and assistants, cleaners and cooks,
All now in danger, it’s bad as it looks,
All of the rules, strung out, fully loaded,
We still won’t be near to zero covid.

Harry Rogers in the yellow room 4th November 2020

PRISING THE WHELK FROM ITS SHELL

On road to Rome in Georgia state,
Trump, pumped up with drugs and steroids,
Exhorts goons to intimidate,
As he scratches his hemorrhoids.
This final day of campaigning,
For a further bout of madness,
Is no longer entertaining,
Riven as it is with badness.
We will need a giant needle,
To Prise obese, stubborn, whelk out
From the shell where he does wheedle,
Lie, prestidigitate and shout.
He’ll wriggle, he’ll struggle, cry fake,
But in the end he’ll have to go,
Revealed as a broken snowflake,
Blown by the wind from Ohio.

Harry Rogers In the Red Bedroom, 2nd November 2020.

NO TIME TO STAND AND CRY

Now is no time to stand and cry
Neither appease nor pacify
Extremists spit upon our head
They will not stop, they wish us dead
Media amplifies the sound
That emanates from centre ground
The righteous on their carpet ride
Deliver social suicide
They trawl through tweet and email box
With grubby hands turn back the clocks
How easily these ghouls are vexed
By words taken out of context
Deliberately on they plough
To slaughter one more holy cow
Point the finger, spin out the lies
Phoenix New New Labour arise
Soon will come corrupt aftershock
They’ll fade away just like Pasok.
Comrades fear not, let’s dry our eyes
It’s time for us to organise.

Harry Rogers, In the Red Bedroom, 1st November 2020

FACE FACTS AND CHANGE

Nothing can be changed until it is faced. – James Baldwin

Let’s face it, we have a problem,
A problem with democracy.
Politicians speak on the stump,
Sell us all kinds of apple pie,
Only when we vote these demons in
Do we find out how much they lie.
Focus on personality,
The abilty to sell stuff,
Divorced from our reality,
The gilded tin, the powder puff,
Make what never was great again,
Put fishing top and housing last,
Move quickly on, hide up the pain,
Sweep past away and do it fast
With faff and spaff and chunder
Bring on new Dominic blunder
Roll out the iron sheet thunder,
Split all our old dreams asunder.
Ignore what they said they would do,
Each day one more shock of the new,
Mix up the red with the blue,
Spring chaotic bling wrecking crew.
No free school meals outside term time,
Democracy? I call it crime.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 22nd October, 2020.

WHERE HOPE MEETS FEAR

That place where fear meets hope,
Fire break, hot-spot, shielding,
New Deja vu circuit
Breaking the virus chain,
Bonfire night, Halloween,
Postponed during the clamp,
Keep schools open for some,
Close libraries and gyms,
Shut universities,
Pubs, gift shops, and campsites,
We all pull together,
Except for Welsh Tories
Who will politicize
Covid endlessly with
Hyper local lockdowns.
People before profit
Is our rallying cry,
We’ll pick up the pieces
One bright day, by and by,
Meanwhile stay safe, stay home,
Keep one eye on the stats,
Other on Boris and
His asset stripping rats,
Feels like last days of Rome.
The poor, and the low paid
Will bear the brunt again
Sticking plaster fixes
Won’t bring relief to pain.
Universal credit
For those who lose their jobs,
Cannot meet commitments.
Whilst knobs debate the R,
Lists of rules grow longer,
Save pubs, eat out, stay home,
Lock down, wear masks, obey,
Pursue a policy
Of equal misery,
If you’re not confused now
Wait on, you soon will be.
Make us blame each other,
Sister grass up brother,
The rich will cop for nought
Blame us, it’s all our fault,
We did what you told us,
Perhaps we will again
This is what they wanted,
The ghouls in number ten,
Like slick rugby players
Pass the ball so quickly,
Maintain power without
Responsibility.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, October 20th, 2020

THE ADOLESCENT CAT

So I go down to the local town to buy my partner Jenny a birthday card and a present. I go into a gift shop owned by a good friend. I have a mask on and I sanitise on the the way in. My friend is not in the shop but her mother is at the counter wrapping up some pottery for a customer. I browse through the hand made cards produced by local artists and choose one with a view of a coastal valley in Ceredigion, the colours are beautiful, I am pleased. I move on to peruse the jewelry section and there I see a pair of silver earrings with jade coloured glass drops on them. Perfect, I often buy earrings for Jenny, I am a creature of habit, so I pick these up and stand two metres from the counter studiously socially distanced ftom the other customer. She leaves, I advance and I hand my purchases over for wrapping etc. We are now alone in the shop and we exchange pleasantries, after all we’ve known each other for more than twenty years. As she picks up some tissue paper from the counter top she turns the whole pile over and says something about having a new kitten who has walked over the paper and left a wet footprint on it. I say ‘Well cats don’t know about such distinctions I guess.’
She says ‘He’s new, he’s an adolescent boy, and you know what they’re like don’t you?’
I respond, flippantly, ‘Oh yes, there’s one of those in the White House right now.”
There’s a pregnant pause before she says ‘I am a Trump supporter, I’m fed up with namby pambyism, I admire his straight talking.’
I look her in the eyes and I say ‘ But he’s a total nazi….’ to which she replies, ‘Well I’d rather have that than wishy washy liberals.’
We talk for a bit longer about home grown politics and she tells me she was all for Corbyn but since the election the new Labour leadership is not for her. We talk a bit about Greece and Spain, Then, as she hands me the dinky mini brown paper carrier bag with the card and the fancy wrapped earrings in, I pay, say goodbye and walk up the high street back to my car.
I am very shocked. I remember back in the days when we were campaigning against the war in Iraq this woman was a staunch supporter of the local peace group and I have always thought of her as a comrade. I guess I’ll be buying birthday cards and earrings elsewhere in future. What the fuck is happening? I am confused. I take off my face mask, drive home, and pour myself a whiskey. I need it.

Harry Rogers, in the Red bedroom, October 12th, 2020.

SHINE LIKE GOLDEN SUNS

Maybe tomorrow we make it better,
Stand out on the streets or write a letter,
One way or another let’s get this done,
Let’s get together,one by one by one.
Don’t bring us leaders, those who take a ride,
Give us somebody to walk by our side.
As we march, our hearts, light as a feather,
Help us to smile through the stormy weather.
Sing those songs of struggle from long ago,
From Woody and Nina, help us to grow,
We’ll march through the north, we’ll march through the south,
Songs of love and hope filling every mouth,
Face down the racists, the boogaloo guns,
Up on higher ground shine like golden suns,

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, October 11th 2020.

Fol De Fucking Rol

Fol de fucking roll
There’s another poll.
The man with no soul
Scores one more own goal,
They roar four more years,
Forget nation’s tears,
Maskless down their beers,
Ramp up all our fears,
Reckoning soon come,
For chump on the stump,
When steroids wear off,
As he plays down cough,
He’ll beg for his mum,
Fall down with a bump,
Always remember,
Third of November,
Time for all to dump
Madman Donald Trump.

Harry Rogers in The Red Bedroom, 11th October 2020.

GOD PAYS DEBTS WITHOUT MONEY

God Pays debts without money,
So my mother used to say,
Well I don’t believe in God,
But sometimes it looks that way.
Four Five walks to the chopper,
He flashes a discrete wave,
Somehow he came a cropper,
Looks like a proper close shave.
No-one knows if he’s got it,
If he has it could get bad,
The electors have a fit,
Media go fucking mad,
His videos feel funny,
The tweets keep right on coming,
His campaign needs more money,
Fox News forever dumbing.
Over here across the pond,
We’re not quite sure what to think,
Will there be some magic wand,
Or another giant stink?
I’m hoping he doesn’t die,
We don’t need martyrs made fake,
He’ll not let sleeping dogs lie,
Can’t tell if he’s on the make,
Could be one thing or other,
Still got plenty of bunny,
I keep hearing my mother,
God pays debts without money.

Harry Rogers in the Yellow Room, October 3rd 2020.

ARE THE PEOPLE HAPPY?

Alone on that high wire
That stretches over hell
They took away the safety net
That caught you when you fell
Check out Maggie’s death spooks,
We thought they were long gone
Now they’re back on our TV sets ,
They drone on, on, and on.
Are the people happy?
They really need to know.
Universal credit,
The furlough has run out,
Talk of viable jobs,
Trash the precariat.
They will measure your wellbeing
To work out how far can they go.
Are the people happy?
A scale of one to ten,
Decimate benefits,
Again, again, again.

Aberbanc: Halloween, 2016.
Revised in the Yellow Room, September 27th 2020

CINDERELLA SITUATION

I wrote this on holiday in 2018.

The dotard prince wanders around
He drags his knuckles over ground
The ice queen of celebrity
Frozen by mediocrity
Hides away a month and a day
Lost in the mists of Mandalay
Buggy rides from high tea to tee
Drive the green between thee and me
Steals our cash across the nation
Cinderella situation.
Takes colonial pith in vain
Messiah complex rules again
Judged not the fakir, blonde, insane
Injects the bile into each brain
Convinced the proletariat
That hate not love is where it’s at
A tragedy that says it all
Nobody’s going to the ball
There will be no recreation
Cinderella situation

8/10/2018 Tremezzo. Lago di Como, Italy.

CURFEWS ON CAMPUS

Empty libraries, no-one in the stacks,
There is no research, no-one sifts the facts.
Refectory shut down, lecture halls too,
Union bar gigs gone, nothing to do,
Students in garretts, now banged up all day,
Campus isolation all for 9K.
Laptop screens flicker in room after room,
Headphones on bonces, new learning on Zoom,
Tiers, pods and bubbles keep distanced apart,
Fears, gods and troubles, is no way to start.
Fresh faced freshers no way will stay quiet,
They will learn something, new ways to riot.
Curfews on campus, they’re all getting ill,
No track, and no trace, there’s no magic pill.
Still, just so long as students pay their fee,
They’ll get a University degree.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, September 28th 2020

ZUGZWANG BANG

Zugzwang is a zeitgeist word
Situation now absurd,
There is nowhere left to turn,
Every option crash and burn.
Capitalists in the shit,
Can we make the most of it?
Dodgy academia,
Propping up the media,
One more televised fraudcast,
Engineer a new fly past
Trouble in the tea room soon
Calls to ditch the blonde buffoon.
He says the troops can backfill
Shortcomings of the Old Bill
His warning stands, don’t break rules,
Exponential growth you fools.
Spread the fear, around, around,
Never ending new lockdown.
Stuck upon this roundabout
Feels there’s no easy way out.
We’re stuck inside a Zugzwang,
Heading for one great big bang.

Harry Rogers in the yellow room, September 23rd 2020.

Zugzwang (Noun) Being forced by circumstances to do something which you do not wish to do. Where whatever move you make it ends up bad.

Q AROUND THE SQUARE

I saw that Q a forming
On a hot Saturday morning,
Without too much of a warning,
They gather in Trafalgar Square,
They hug and kiss without a care,
Mass selfishness truly laid bare.
Watch as pale rider gallops through,
It searches for carriers new,
Infects tin hats and fascists too.
Rumours of hype and hoax are spread,
They freely mingle without dread,
No care or thought of future dead,
On Nelson’s head there sits a bird,
Immune, unlike this gathered herd,
He swoops down low and shits a turd,
Anti vaxers sing same old song,
Conspiracy feeds on and on,
I spy the British Q anon.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, September 21st 2020.

THE NEWS TODAY…

Today I watched TV news for one hour, and wrote down a list of key pandemic words and phrases. With such a blitzkrieg of conflicting information is it any wonder that people are distressed, depressed or have stopped listening.

Whack a mole
Moonshot
Sudacreme
Test and Trace
Crush the curve
Corona surge
Bottleneck
Areas of intervention
Support bubbles
Shielding
Circuit breaker
Night time curfew
Hospitality shutdown
Keep checking the regulations
Rule of six
Back to school
Back to work
Demand outstrips capacity of world class system
Processing backlog
Trend analysis distortion
Tighter restrictions
Open up the economy
Quarantine list
Non essential travel
Informal informing
R number
Warning signal
ICU
Exponential growth
Work from home
Don’t visit other people’s houses
Premier League football to restart with socially distanced crowds
No mingling
Swabs to your nose and throat
Infection survey
Wake up call
All in it together
Universities are open
Critical point
Nothing is inevitable
Protocols
Sticky blood
Tipping point
Reducing backlog
Turnaround time slippage
Self isolation the key
National Lockdown
Sobering week
Community transmission
Lighthouse lab system
Novel disease
Community responsibility
Do the right thing
Plan for the worst
Work for the best
Only people can make a difference
Wear a face covering
No engagement of four governments
Vacancy at heart of the UK government
Cytokine storm
Covid toes
Royal mint not making new coins
Furlough ending
New Year’s Eve fireworks cancelled
Stringent national lock-down
Accelerated uptick
Hoping for a drop-off in infection
The last line of defence
Christmas is coming, who knows where we go from here on in.
Me? I’m going to be self isolated most of the time.
Stay safe, as Arthur Lee said “The news today will be the movies of tomorrow.”

Harry Rogers in the yellow room, September 18th, 2020.

DON’T MINGLE DOWN THE DINGLE

Whatever you do don’t mingle,
When you walk your dog through the park,
If there’s six friends in the dingle
Don’t dwell for some sport or a lark.
If you want to go kill a grouse
With gundogs on a Scottish moor,
Plus twenty knobs from the big house,
You’re OK, that’s within the law.
Go buy yourself plus four britches,
And a fluffy checked woolen cap,
Drink whiskey with hounds and bitches,
Be a killer so full of crap.
Toddy toasts sat on shooting stick,
Sets bougeois hearts all a tingle
But if you’re no upper class prick,
Whatever you do DON’T MINGLE.

Harry Rogers in the blue bathroom, September 16th 2020.

GRASS GRASS GRASS

It’s open sesame today,
Parliament has had it’s say,
Home secretary stirs the pot,
Soon we’ll be banged up for,
Calling out the government.
No carping against the leadership,
His words are sacrosanct.
Get it all done, don’t ask questions,
Spread the fear, ball of confusion rolls again,
On a daily basis, the spads furiously churn out,
Aspirational propaganda,
On a daily basis.
Stay frightened,
Obey,
Grass, grass, grass.
The left wing smart ass intellectuals
Are the enemy,
Grass, grass, grass,
Stay scared,
Don’t believe anyone but us,
We are your friends,
We are all in this together, Except for grouse shooting parties,
They can, as usual,
Do what the fuck they like.
Grass, grass, grass.
Effectively,
On a daily basis.
It’s a World Class System.
New Normal,
Informal informing,
Stay safe,
Grass grass, grass,
We wash our hands, of responsibility,
We keep our distance from you,
It’s for your own safety,
GRASS, GRASS, GRASS.
Stay scared,
We’ll say anything necessary,
On a daily basis,
We’re the best in the world,
You voted us in,
Thanks.

Harry Rogers in the Yellow room, September 15th

HARK, I HEAR A LUNAR SHOT

Wwhhhaaaattttt the heck is happening?
One hundred billion pounds?
For something not invented?
Can’t they see how this all sounds?
Are we run by lunatics?
Which spad came up with Moonshot?
What, like shoot the fucking moon?
This ain’t nineteen sixty nine,
We’re not taking giant steps,
More like gross leaps in the dark.
This absurd fake lunar shit,
Is it full moon, or blue moon?
What kind of moon will we be
Shooting into our raddled veins?
Every day change the rules,
Hold out possibilities
That perhaps things will improve,
If we all wait a few months,
Life will get back to normal.
Not the old normal we loved,
But a new shiny normal.
A normal where we can be
Sure there’s no society,
Where Atlas has truly shrugged,
Where all phones are really bugged.
When was the last time we used
Cash to pay for anything?
Capitalism? What’s that?
Barbarism, new normal,
New rules, New Randian ways.
New zombie apocalypse,
Created to confuse us all,
To convince us that we’re small,
And big, rich, poor, sick and well,
That this is no living hell,
Each new day moonbeams glitter,
Spad vampire bats do flitter,
Take a moonshot in your bum.
This IS Pandemonium.

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room, September 13th 2020.

GREEDVILLE

Welcome to Greedville where dinosaurs thrive,
On top of towers are sharks that survive,
Oppulent décor that oozes with gold,
Tasteless faux artworks purport to be old,
Divorced from real worlds, sultans on the take,
They have the gall to say we’re fucking fake.
Family lords it, like they’re in the know,
Strut in their threads, some throwback freak show.
The leader’s a ghoul too big for his pants,
Surrounded all times by sick sycophants.
Today radio comes on with the proof,
Knew, but did nothing, obscured the truth.
As all the alt right suckle his nipple,
He looks for next state service to cripple.

Harry Rogers in the Yellow Room, 10th September 2020

BACK TO NEW BIZARRO NORMAL

No party raves in the front room
Friends and neighbors have got to go.
Reapers again clean weaponry,
New wave rolls on in Autumn sun.
With speed of light crash now arrives,
Us boomers, isolated still,
Watch fearfully behind curtains.
New normal unfolds fitfully,
Tory game unravels, full pelt,
No deflection can close our eyes
No political alibis,
Their spin has spun, we see through lies,
Watch piggies in Westminster stys,
As they place blame upon us all
Charades and faux walls start to fall,
They can’t placate us with football,
Where’s the people’s clarion call?
The whole facade is out of hand.
You need a test? Go to Scotland.
Don’t own a car? That’s your lookout,
Spads now deaf as we scream and shout.
Understand what it’s all about,
The immune herd, the truth is out,
Statistics no more carry clout,
Their information counts for nowt,
Nobody listens anymore,
To those who do not know the score,
Boris seems to be having fun,
Smirking as he gets Brexit done.
Glib postures won’t seal up the crack
Through which the knives fly to his back,
Thrown by his own, through smoke and flack,
This then the cost of being slack.
Tomorrow we go to the sea,
Must get away from misery,
Spend precious time with family,
Time flies, we might be next, d’you see?…….

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 9th September 2020.

A TOUCH OF THE VAPOURS

Brexit is back on the box
Truly electrifying,
No Deal is braced on the chocks
Soon Boris will be flying.
Hide pandemic behind cloud,
Move back onto safer ground,
Shout Get Brexit Done out loud,
Spike 2? Let’s not make a sound.
Tariffs just round the corner,
We eat our pudding and pie,
Pull out plum like Jack Horner,
Meanwhile we’re all gonna die.
Pritti is all in a twist,
Extinction comes true this time,
Freedom and truth will be missed,
Rebellion is now a crime.
Djocko headlines the papers,
The virus hides on page four,
I’ve a touch of the vapours,
Feels like we’ve been here before!

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 7th September 2020.

DON’S BLOOD RED MASQUE.

Citizens emerge from the woodwork and claim the right to bear arms against anyone they deem to be not on the same page as them.
These villainous vigilantes place their freedoms above all other rights and obligations.
Even above the ten commandments of Christianity that most of them claim to believe in.
The whiff of cordite is in the air, threatening to usurp the alcoholic odour of hand sanitiser.
Boogaloo boys and others wander the streets of US towns and cities dressed in paramilitary clothes and armed to the teeth with outlandish weaponry.
As tempers flare over racist atrocities, so the orchestrated insanity gains in intensity.
All of this plays to the crude theatre of the surreal that American politics has become.
I can hardly bring myself to tune into news bulletins for fear that the madness has been further ramped up.
I try to occupy myself with distractions, today I finally framed two Japanese ink paintings that I made in 1999.
Whilst I looked for pins to fix picture hooks to the wall with I came across a gold wedding ring in the bottom of a tin of assorted DIY bric-a-brac.
I have no idea how it came to be there, nor who it belonged to.
I’ve not opened this tin for a good twenty years, but this piece of 9 carat gold weighs in at seven grams.
Scrap 9ct gold currently fetches up to £18 per gram so that’s a cool £120 I never knew I had.
Luck it seems is unequally distributed around the globe.
I cannot stop the thoughts of bullets severing spinal chords that enter my fevered brain. Not even this joyous piece of serendipity can supplant the feelings of horror that overwhelm me as I watch Trump’s Red Death Masque unfold minute by minute, lie by lie.
The situation is grossly obscene, somebody or something, please take me out of this mindset, away from the pornography of ritual anti democracy and unconstitutionality as performed by four five and his perverse family on a daily basis.
Unfortunately I know that when I awake tomorrow it won’t be over.
Sure enough I wake to news that a seventeen year old boy has opened fire on unarmed protestors in Wisconsin.
I worry for all my good friends in America.
The fork tongued ghoul exhorts his followers to call for twelve more years. Twelve more years to wage war on his own people, sow division between wasps and everyone else.
The first lady glides onto my TV swathed in khaki and delivers the most egregious speech calling on people to pull together whilst her husband sends in the national guard.

Reason, democracy, trust,
These things lie trashed in the dust,
Bile poured by unbottled djins,
State fabric smashed like ninepins,
All the rednecks drink it up,
Yet they too lap hemlock cup.
Empire’s end, never pretty,
Nihilists bring mendacity,
One aim, protect privilege,
Rob, lie, burn, spurn tutelage,
Announce new normal, rain chaos,
Wave sweet reason adiós,
Dream’s over, now demons bask,
In light from Don’s blood red masque.

Harry Rogers, ranting in the Yellow Room, 27th August 2020.

PALE GYMKHANAE

The pale rider saunters into the car park at Tesco’s.
She fiddles with her pearls as she observes the obedient socially distanced queue who, in turn, wait patiently to purchase their fuel for the future.
The rider hides her identity behind a cloak of invisibility, dismounts from her temporary steed, and slides microscopically along the line in search of a new carrier.
Most of the people deny her entrance because they have taken the precaution to bar the way with masks and bandanas, but there, almost at the front of the queue, stands a non-conformist.
Unmasked, proud of the T Shirt he wears with the slogan Masks Off, Let’s Be Real emblazoned across his chest.
The rider does not hesitate, she wraps her wispy tentacles around his head and pulls herself sinuously into his sinus cavity and awaits his next breath to carry her deep into his unsuspecting lungs.
He remains haughty and unaware that he’s been chosen.
Inside his lungs the rider leaves some seeds and then departs on the next exhalation from which she floats languorously back to her invisible charger.
She remounts and they slowly trot past the front of store security guard and amble by the table with the hand sanitiser dispenser and paper towels, on into the fruit and vegetable section.
She rides up and down the aisles, she deliberately follows the red arrows marked out on the floor, and, once, spurs her mount to leap over the shelves straight into the midst of a family group as they gently argue about ice cream flavours.
More seeds are sown and eventually the rider leaves for pastures new.
She spurs her invisible horse down to Aldi.
Another hotspot, more human receptacles, the breeding goes on.
Meanwhile other riders await starter’s orders in a variety of situations.
Waves lap gently, waiting for the inevitable rollers to break on winter shores.

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 27th August 2020.

HEAR SKYLARKS SING

Soon your tower gonna fall
I heard your whippoorwill call
Shreiked in the middle of night
Now it’s time to put things right.
You tell lies the easy way
Like Jimmy McGill they say
Two hours on make up and hair
Spread snake oil everywhere.
Better take off your golf shoes
Listen to reckoning news
Go downtown and take a look
Put away Goebbels playbook.
Young folks are your nemesis
They can’t stand your wind and piss
Your shallow state is not free,
Hang you from Joshua tree
Pittsburgh rusts on in the rain
We won’t hear your voice again
Whimper beyond your last scream
As we end your bad daydream
People on the streets will jive
After the fall of four five.
Once more hope anew we’ll bring
Then we will hear skylarks sing.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 24th August 2020.

INFLATABLE KAYAKS AND SUNSEEKERS

Two young refugees paddle a kayak,
Watch as the flycatchers circle this craft
Not a high spec sea going pro kayak
Able to cross over English Channel
Only a cheap inflatable kayak
For recreation in pool or still lake.
Only a faux imitation kayak.
For two to try and paddle such a craft
From Calais to England is sheer folly
Embarked out of utter desperation
Resulting from unjust situation.
One boy drowned the other demoralised
Meanwhile millionaire British bankers
Circle the globe in super yacht Sunseekers
Fifty four metre luxury cruisers
Tell me, where’s the fucking justice?…..
Where?…..
Where?
Human Rights?
What are they?

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, 24th August 2020.

EAGLES FLY NO MORE

A Welsh golden eagle dies in the hills,
Student high fliers well know how this feels,
Llywodraeth have failed to act fast enough,
No wonder young voters will cut up rough.
Demise of justice, first ministers fault,
Education system not worth its salt.
Meanwhile, on his jollys, Johnson’s away,
So nobody knows what he’s got to say.
The Brexiteer Reich grinds close to it’s end,
Cummings events? Dear god, heaven forfend.
Control slips away, they go round the bend,
It’s all got too much for this lot to mend.
Whilst bailed MP deletes his twitter feed
Pandemic chaos is too hard to read.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 18th August 2020.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 18th August 2020.

RANDIAN KLEPTOFAILURE

The special relationship between kleptocratic assassins who cannot see beyond the maintenance of the corner that the ultra wealthy have painted themselves into, has created the condition of misery for millions. The turn of the millennium policies that wholeheartedly embraced globalisation jointly espoused by neo liberal politicians has dragged us into the maelstrom of rapid decline in manufacturing, public service provision, infrastructural repair, and the welfare of social structures. This is not some fictional ramble along a bramble choked coastal path that we can easily turn back from and go back home to the comfort of tea and cucumber sandwiches enjoyed in the rose tinted past we are encouraged to think we relished in the make believe idyll of the post second world war years. This is a full throttle roar along a Randian dragstrip, paved with the failure of individualism, exposed as a dystopian nightmare by the paucity of intellect, and will, now so clearly revealed by the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
It’s hard to pinpoint the exact moment when the major capitalist economies transmogrified from being democracies into kleptocracies, perhaps behind the scenes there has always been a certain amount of brown paper envelopes filled with public cash being transferred into the bank accounts of senior politicians and their families and friends but surely never has it been quite so blatantly obvious. The handing over of more than a hundred million pounds for the supply of faulty facemasks to a company with no previous experience in PPE is treated as a mild mistake by the media. Had this been a Labour administration the right wing monolith that passes for a free press in this country would have been howling from the rooftops. As it is parliament is in recess, the new normal is in full swing, confusion rules, panicked residents in coastal and rural areas are fearful of the much trumpeted second wave as people flood in for good old fashioned staycations. Denial by groups of anti vaxers who terrorise shop workers as they try to do their best to implement ever changing rules and guidelines demonstrates clearly that the New Normal is a place where the wafer thin veneer of civilisation has given way to barbarism overseen by leaders who wallow in decadence. Winter is coming and the kleptocracy shows no sign of slowing down, I try not to dream of a no deal Brexit. Unfortunately there is no where to run to. In these circumstances lock down is the only haven of safety.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, 13th August 2020

BROKEN FAN

Today there was so much shit in the air,
That old fan finally gave up the ghost.
Careerist lawyers have all blown a fuse,
Now their shenanigans are in the news.
Stand by my window, look up at the stars,
Focus on Mars, try to collect my thoughts,
Is this the moment for left versus right,
To smash socialism inside the courts?
Parliament’s empty of popinjays,
They have all gone home for their holidays.
BBC scrabbles round for bones to gnaw on,
Comrades stand firm now, there is a war on.
All the lost jobs, through Covid and Brexit?
Yesterday’s chips and nobody gets it.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 1.00 AM 25th July 2020.

SPORADICITY

Here come sporadical lockdowns,
The latest order of the day,
Leicester one day, your place the next.
What powers are needed for this?
Are there any sporadic apps?
Or are these just the random thoughts
Dreamed by wily spad conjurers
Who have to give their ministers
A semblance of something to say
In order to confirm that they,
In their wisdom, actually
Do something, or do anything.
In the vague hope that chaos theory
Will somehow come to our rescue,
These dark prestidigitators
Foist their sleights of hand on us all
Daily. As media trumpets
Blare out latest tossed off press release,
Funded by magic money trees
We all slither down on our knees,
Smeared and mired in Tory sleaze.
Wild campers pitch tents everywhere
Furloughed workers stand down and stare,
Weeks go by as the deadline nears,
All are filled with sporadic fears
Somebody said six million,
That’s just a random estimate.
No-one really knows how many
Will draw universal credit,
Welcome to Sporadicity.

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 20th July 2020

MAGICAL INEXACTITUDES

Revisit the seventeenth century
Hang Abracadabra outside your house
Invent new magical spells for our times,
Boriscadaboris might do the trick.
Sniff nosegays, dance Ring-a-ring-a-roses.
Judges try cases in nightingale courts,
Up on Blackheath soon football will restart,
Witness the show world versus the real world.
Amulets and incantations abound,
Rat flea Covid deniers run around
Through shopping malls and half filled bierkellers
They utter naive cabalistic charms,
“Let’s take control of the invisible,
Slow down, push down, control, don’t hang about,
Roll out the Nuclear lock-down option.”
Bring on magical inexactitudes.
Well, whatever we do, just don’t tell the truth,
Get back to work, we do not need real proof.

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room, Sunday 19th July 2020.

WEST SIDE LIVING DEAD

Now we watch as West Side Story
Becomes Night of the Living Dead
There’s no time for Morning Glory
Not since Sars got inside our head
We stand masked up at the bus stop,
Somehow still find the time to queue,
Before we shuffle to that shop
Where police serve the people’s stew.
Covid bulletins are long gone
The MPs don’t know what to do,
The whole world hums funeral songs
This corona ain’t fucking flu
At start of end of first lock down
We bathed in the light of false dawn
Virus deniers yelled cross town
We’re scam victims of fake news porn
Second waves crash on urban beach
Tsunami floods each chicken shed,
No more teachers are left to teach,
We’re now the West Side Living Dead.

Half past five in the red bedroom, 15th July 2020.

BLOW WHISTLE BLOW

Blow those whistles louder,
Before they come for you,
Let not them stuff your gob
With gold to shut you up.
Shout it from the rooftops,
Tell us all that you know,
If you’ve got the emails,
Flood them to the net.
Copies of the contracts?
Tweet them from dawn to dusk.
Write truth in your memoir,
Spill the beans with gusto.
Bent ministers and spads?
Please kick them where it hurts.
Time to clean the stables,
Flush all the crooks away,
Throw them to the lions,
Cummings and baby Gove,
Let’s take them down today!

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, Saturday 11th July.

WE WANT FRIES WITH OUR MEAL DEAL.

Steer Kharma, forensick, at despatch box,
Mewls as Haystacks gang shoots fox after fox.
Cummings has stolen all Jeremy’s clothes,
To wave them beneath New New Labour’s nose.
Forests of money trees bloom at the bank,
Quantitavely eased with clink and clank.
Billions of pounds are drawn at a stroke,
Millions of workers now left for broke.
Advisory rules now go up in smoke,
Health ministers stats now called out a joke.
The track and trace app? A pig in a poke,
Changes in benefits soon to revoke,
Dole queues grow longer, this mess is severe,
Still, grab a meal deal, don’t say it’s austere.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, Friday 10th July 2020

WHO WANTS TO BE A BLAIRITE MILLIONAIRE?

Who wants to be a Blairite millionaire?
Exploit Labour voters without a care.
Denigrate socialists everywhere,
Start needless wars, cultivate silly hair.
Lord Blunkett spouts tosh on Radio four,
Whilst our Rebecca is wheeled out the door,
Mandelson unsheaths his back stab once more,
New new Labour now shits over house floor.
In Gaza families quiver in fear,
As the keys to their houses are stolen,
Some of us shudder as we shed a tear,
The future does not look quite so golden.
Pander to petrolhead racist bullies,
Electable in post Jezza woolies?

Harry Rogers, in the Red Bedroom, 8th July 2020

BUCKSTOP

Please tell us where the buck stops, if you can.
The powerful deny it is their man.
Whenever there’s a crisis it’s the same.
Politicians will never take the blame.
Haystack bonce points to owners of care homes,
These shitehawks from Westminster catacombs,
Irresponsible power at the top,
However can we make false spinning stop?
Pass the blame, fend off shame, guilt trip others,
It will be our fault, sisters and brothers.
No one’s job is safe, the walls tumble down,
Once again we turn our gaze to the crown,
TV and Radio stand complicit,
Funny how the bucks never stop, innit?

Harry Rogers, in the Yellow Room, Monday 6th July 2020

LABOUR CANNOT HURT ME ANYMORE

My Labour Party membership is at an end.
I decided to put down my thoughts on my Labour Party Membership in 2020. It is important to say that in 2003 I resigned from the Labour Party over the decision by Tony Blair to take Britain into illegal wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. During the following years I involved myself in the activities of the anti-war movement. It was not when Jeremy Corbyn was put forward as a leadership candidate that I decided to rejoin the Labour Party, rather I rejoined the party to oppose the election of David Miliband as leader and the continuation of neo liberalism in the higher echalons of the party, I rejoined to vote for Ed Miliband.
Currently I still hold a membership card, indeed I am also the elected Chairperson of Ceredigion Constituency Labour Party. Since I joined I have paid close attention to political events inside and outside the Party. As a left wing socialist I was delighted when Jeremy Corbyn became the leader and the membership set to and produced the impetus for the 2017 election manifesto. Despite the actions of the majority of the Parliamentary Labour Party, both in launching the failed leadership bid and consistently working against the wishes of the membership the party almost won the 2017 general election. At that time I knew there were some problems in the Party administration but I put that down to ineptitude during a period of great change. Having read the leaked report on anti-Semitism I now realise that I was wrong. Paid workers in the General Secretary’s office alongside large numbers of the PLP systematically worked to nullify my and tens of thousands of party members efforts to bring about a Labour victory. Reading this report is a sickening experience, but those who haven’t read it are now disbarred from having sight of it. Since reading it and also watching the party slowly move away from socialism under the leadership of Sir Keir Starmer I have become increasingly uncomfortable. The introduction of a range of decisions designed to further undermine and smear my good friend and comrade Jeremy Corbyn has been difficult to take. All around me good comrades from across the whole of Britain have already left the party. Other good comrades still in the party are saying stay and fight, don’t leave because that’s what Starmer wants you to do, stay and hold the line, we can still get the manifesto policies implemented, unity is strength, and other such epithets. Some say the only way to defeat the Tories is to stay in the Labour Party, it’s the only show in town. To all these pleadings I have been struggling internally to dampen down the pain I feel following the defeat in the 2019 General Election. I tried to stay staunch, working alongside my excellent comrades on the CLP Executive Committee here in Ceredigion.

I did believe that we were on the road to building a truly significant local alternative social, economic, and community development strategy for the people of Ceredigion.
Recent events within the the Labour Party heirarchy have dented and now, finally smashed my belief to smithereens. It isn’t just the decision to sack Rebecca Long Bailey on spurious charges of anti-Semitism, though that is a disgraceful enough episode, nor is it the fact that it is impossible to have any political influence in the decision making process of the Labour Party due to the pandemic lock-down, nor the latest attack on left wing members by Swansea MP Nia Griffiths where she outrageously accuses all comrades who have supported RLB of being anti-semites. It took a conversation with a dear friend of mine to make me stand back and look dispassionately at what I really feel about my ongoing membership.
All the blandishments from different sections to stay and fight actually feel painful to me. As if, to paraphrase my friend, I am being blackmailed into staying in an abusive relationship. Tommy Cooper used to tell a joke about a man who goes in to see his doctor and says “Doctor, every time I go like this it hurts.” to which the doctor replies, “Don’t go like that.”. I have always believed that if you are doing something that hurts you should stop doing it.
Being in the Labour Party has become too painful to bear so now is the time to stop hurting myself. I have no respect for the leadership, or belief in their strategies or actions. My relationship with The Labour Party as an organisation is over. I hereby resign.

Harry Rogers
Monday 29th June 2020.

Postscript:
Since leaving Ceredigion Labour Party I spent the whole of July and August thinking about my options. Disengaging from politics left a hole in my lufe. I attended a number of People’s Assembly Against Austerity online ZOOM meetings and became aware of Left Unity Wales. I checked out the party website, read their manifesto statements, and attended a couple of online meetings. I realised that I need to be politically engaged with like minded comrades and I joined Left Unity in September. I am so glad I did, the atmosphere here is just so much better.
Forward in solidarity to a socialist future,
Harry Rogers,
Left Unity Wales
Sunday 4th October 2020

Join Left Unity here: https://leftunity.org/

SHALL WE GO SHOPPING?

Recorded in Harriboy’s Hut.

You can go to Primark or Debenhams
You can’t go visit your dads or your mums.
Did you hear Boris’s spud headed spad
Spilling his Durham beans in the garden?
The whole country tuned in to his blather,
Together we say, “We beg your pardon?”
The things we hate most are fucking liars,
Piled high on Westminster funeral pyres.
Cornered with cabinet floor paint on hands
Drive through bluebells, oh the sheer arrogance.
The sun shone so kindly there by the lake
This then is the truth some claimed to be fake.
Get out our wallets, Covid is stopping,
So soon we can all go fucking shopping.

Harry Rogers, in the red bedroom, 26th May 2020.

PANTO ON FIRE

A nest of incestuous investors
Lies behind cloak of bombed out BJ
Hand grenade drops through Brexit pill box slit
Wounded spads analyse pin puller disguise
Desperate to find who will benefit
Us cannon fodder voters, smoke in eyes,
Watch in stunned terror as panto unfolds,
No-one shouts Look Behind You, in the wings
Waits latest parvenu, heart all a quiver
Soon, on centre stage, where he will slither,
Highwayman new shouts Stand and Deliver
Fresh spads snivel as the people shiver.
Democracy turns to patrician mauve
I really do hope it’s not Michael Gove.

Harry Rogers, in the red bedroom, Monday 25th May 2020.

CHOMSKY’S PEKINESE

Chomsky’s Dog chews papers in the background
Every now and then makes a growling sound
Naom proselytises without pause
Dog scratches purposefully with all claws
Advice for activists flows out freely
Words spoken softly yet no less steely
Offers hope for future generations
Twenty years to save the fate of nations
Wretched theives and crooks, wrecked economy
Post Covid climate, lockdown anomie,
Our world in danger, soon we will be toast,
All now take action, don’t give up the ghost.
He is compelling, get up off our knees
Shred Tory lies like Chomsky’s Pekinese.

Harry Rogers, in the yellow room, Pencnwcau, 24th May 2020

SHITTY LINGO

Afflicted with addiction to power
Vote with nasty right in new concensus
Such news disconcerts me by the hour
Perhaps Blairites are non compos mentis
Whoever can reason for such madness?
Strange bedfellows, bold enough to say
Keep asylum seekers filled with sadness,
Pander to the basest racist today
Clap now for points based immigrant carers
Phase out free movement, enlist unemployed,
Conscript the workshy, we hear the bearers
Of Brexit promise to the overjoyed.
My radio sails through open window
Enough of shitty BBC lingo.

Harry Rogers In the Yellow Room, Aberbanc 19th May 2020.

SUSPENDED ALIENATION

SUSPENDED ALIENATION

Capitalism hangs by a thin thread

Sways above piles of Covid nineteen dead

Desperation fills petty bourgeois eyes

New liberals fall on sharp pointed lies

Westminster idlers caught with trousers down

Call clarity not claret for blond clown.

Watch wartime ghosts conga along your street

But grandchildren you’re not allowed to meet

Spirit of the blitz stirred into your spritz

Union Jack clad Brits get on fucking tits

Try to be normal is as normal does

Listen intently to bumble bees buzz

Think back to good times, so simply smashing

Close off your mind, economy’s crashing.

Harry Rogers, Pencnwau Aberbanc, 12th May 2020.

GASLIGHT GOING ON…..

Pangolin scales fall away from our eyes

Wuhan bat blood? More spewed out alibis

Spread wide by buffoons to fill us with fear

Man made or not, too late it’s fucking here.

Warmonger language, heroes and fighters,

Troops on the front line, phony gaslighters,

Furlough is shrinking, as crops fill with mould,

Promised land army locked down on the dole.

Old habits long gone will never come back

Crumbling pubs boarded up, painted black,

New York dispossessed ride subway all night,

On empty beaches? No one there to fight.

Crass false flags flutter from ten Downing Street,

Left forces gather in multi ZOOM meets.

Harry Rogers, Pencnwcau, Aberbanc, 7th May 2020.

PAST THE PEAK?

Teifi, afternoon, flash of bankside blue
Kingfisher searches elver wriggles new
Beneath Henllan bridge otter, trout in paws,
Crunches his lunch whilst Senedd makes bad laws
Guided by science there will be no tests
Crashed trees block the falls, robins fill their nests
Nurses in London block Westminster bridge
Vulnerable kids stare at empty fridge
Birds sing louder, the skies are bluest blues
I burst into tears at the newest news
Tenants evicted as they lose their work
MPs and the spads won’t give up their perks
Sun sets brighter now, we are past the peak
So Boris tells us, when he deigns to speak.

Harry Rogers, Mayday in the red bedroom, 2020.

Oh The Things That We Do

Go down to Creek Road, get drunk on free beer,
Walk through Greenwich Park, shoot a fucking deer
Venison’s better than cheap minced beef pies
Share surplus with neighbours, what a surprise

Oh the things that we do when we are poor

Take rod to river, hook stale bread on,
Cast into slipstream, then pull out a swan
Play bird as it flys up high in the sky
Then kill it and pluck it, try not to cry,
To roast in oven cut swan into four
One more of the things we do, when we’re poor.

Go down Tesco’s fill up trolley and pay
Go out to friends car, stack shopping away
Go round aisles again load exactly the same,
Plus one pack of brillo, forgotten, you claim
With first bill in hand you’ve already paid
Thus shopping’s half price, good game that, well played.

In desperate days we ignore the law,
Oh the things that are done when we are poor.

Harry Rogers, In the Yellow Room, 23rd April, 2020.

FIN DE SEICLE

Today I watch a video report of fucking Covid-19 denying murderers in California on the way to their personal raptures who have forgotten their own sky god commandment, thou shalt not kill. Idiots. I am angry.

Meanwhile in Hackney a thirty year old Sri Lankan single mother incinerates herself in the back garden during lockdown. I am crying.

Elsewhere a young English father is locked down with his wife and son unable to take him to McDonald’s for his fourth birthday party. He tranforms his kitchen into a mock up drive through take away with himself in a YouTube video on the tv in their kitchen. The child is happy with french fries and chicken nuggets. His wife loves the ingenuity of it all. I laugh and cry at the same time.

I feel twitchy, never has there been such social fragility in all my 72 years. The Brexit talks pale into insignificance as the rise of populism grows daily. Italy is on the brink of leaving the EU. You can smell something ancient in the phrases that are bandied about. Phrases such as ” It’s the media that’s the cancer, all their news is fake.” and “All the politicians are useless, all they do is lie.” and “China is to blame.” Even the middle classes are dazed and confused by the consequences of the lockdown as their jobs also disappear and they slip into negative equity. I have read about a similar situation in my collection of 1930s left book club publications. I lie in my bed unable to sleep easy.

Still, the sun is shining this week, yesterday it was the same temperature in Antarctica as it was in Los Angeles………

Harry Rogers, Locked down in Aberbanc, 21-04-2020

LECTERN VICISSITUDES.

I have been sat in front of our TV as 24 hour coverage of this pandemic unfolds for weeks now. I am over 72 years old, I am not supposed to go out unless it’s absolutely crucial. At first I watched all the bulletins as the prime minister and a variety of highfalutin experts stood at lecterns flanked by carefully folded Union Jack flags with the white background and red cross of St George clearly and deliberately to the fore. The early strategy where herd immunity was considered to be the way forward, where every bulletin encouraged everyone to wash their hands every time they touched something but otherwise everything carried on as normal, the roads were full, the trains were full, the airports were full, sports venues, bars, gigs, theatres, cinemas, restaurants, pubs, political meetings, all functioned as ever. This laissez-faire approach was allowed to continue for weeks despite the fact that the government knew in advance that the country could not handle a pandemic such as this because it had participated in an emergency planning exercise, Operation Cygnus, which spelled out exactly what would happen in the event of a virulent respiratory virus running rampant through the world. One question sticks in my mind, if the government knew that the exercise showed that the NHS was under staffed, under equipped and under resourced, why did they not address these issues? What is the point of spending millions of pounds on full blown civil and war emergency planning exercises if you’re not going to take any notice whatsoever of the advice given from the plethora of front line experts, strategists, and senior civil servants involved? And yet, despite all the delay, as the daily death figures rise exponentially, as the economy falls into a slough of despond, as draconian measures curtail freedom of movement, somehow large numbers of people put their faith in the newly elected prime minister, one Boris Johnson. This man who eventually encouraged us to adopt social distancing, made us aware of the dangers of shaking hands with anyone outside of your in house family, and then promptly ignored his own advice, shook hands with all and sundry including a wardful of Covid 19 sufferers and finished up in ICU narrowly avoiding his own demise, some people believe that he is some kind of hero of the people. How can this be the case? He had been infectious for some considerable time and yet continued to bustle around in Westminster and elsewhere, in all kinds of meetings where he will have put untold numbers of staff, colleagues, acquaintances and contacts into harms way. A monumental case of don’t do what I do, do as I say. It’s unacceptable behaviour of anyone, let alone the Prime Minister. The daily broadcast with the Trump style flag frame moved further backwards, where substitutes run through the same sets of statistics that are designed to show how well the country has carried out the government strategy continue unabated. Ministers come and go and continuously state the obvious, the roads are empty, the people, on the whole, obey the rules, all is hunky dory as long as we remain in lockdown. And yet, and yet, PPE levels are disastrously low in hospitals and care facilities, meanwhile health ministers say the government response is phenomenal. Health workers are told not to use equipment unnecessarily. Economic forecasts say that the crisis we are heading into is massive. The number of unemployed in Britain is set to head North of three and a half million. The current universal credit system that penalises those people who have fallen into poverty is not going to be accepted as sufficient by people who have done nothing except lose their jobs as a result of the pandemic. Current levels of benefit will not meet family commitments. Only a government prepared to crack down on tax avoidance and evasion by the richest could address this future catastrophe. The country currently is being run in a totally undemocratic way without adequate parliamentary scrutiny. These are scary times and we now appear to be trapped in the middle of a classic Catch 22 conundrum. Stay locked down, save lives and crash the economy, or ease the lockdown, save the economy and bury a lot more people. Either way it’s a grand disaster. At first I wasn’t sure whether this was just a straight folk devils and moral panics scenario with the government and the media cooking up a false flag emergency to get the ruling class in a position to carry on austerity led business as usual. Now that the death levels here are not falling it is clear that the reality of the situation is that we have an incompetent government, unable to act in favour of saving lives because the economy and their pals in the City of London come first, above human lives. The Prime Minister is possibly going to stand down due to viral fatigue, he will likely be replaced by Raab or Gove, either of which, in my view, are strictly second division when it comes to leadership. It’s a giant deprression filled mess which only ends in tears whatever the outcome, and whenever the end of lockdown occurs. Many people won’t be here to see it, for some of those death might be a blessing in disguise. The aftermath to this ain’t going to be pretty. I’m getting older by the day, there ain’t much I can do about this shitshow. I would like to be able to drive my partner Jenny down to Llangrannog Beach for a pub lunch and a walk by the sea this summer, but the chance of such a simple pleasure looks ever more remote.

Harry Rogers, West Wales, 20th April, 2020

DREAM DIARY

Looking out through lockdown windows
The world in view is too sombre
My mind wanders to pastures new
To party times with good old friends
To singing in the Poppit dunes,
Picking those lost forgotten tunes.
Of how we’ll change the world to come
A glass half full for everyone
The gig economy we’ll shun,
Eugenicists? We’ll make them run.
Hold hands together down The Strand,
Spill wine to our favourite band,
We’ll dance together after dark
Like lovers smooching in the park
All this for future enquiry
Written now in my dream diary.

Harry Rogers, a la Chambre rouge, 2nd April 2022.

COVID PANDEMONIA

It’s bizarre to sit and watch images and words flash across the myriad of screens each of us own at this time early in the third millennium and watch with a sense of horror as the major cities of the globe descend slowly into a state of anarchic pandemonia. Each city has the potential to a greater or lesser extent to metamorphose into, what Milton named as the Capital of Hell, Pandemonium.

What sickens me the most is the realisation that there is absolutely nothing I, or for that matter you, as individuals can possibly do about it. The major news media outlets are busy trying to portray the Covid 19 pandemic as just another major news story that can be presented to the people in the same old time honoured fashion that they done since the birth of Television. However, this time the story is too big for corporatations to control. Little snippets of truth about the sombre reality of this dreadful situation are poking out and are revealed on a daily basis. The never ending howling of ambulance sirens echoing along empty streets, the conversion of skating rinks and other civic amenities into makeshift temporary morgues, the requisition of football grounds and other sports stadia and conference facilities as sites for massive health treatment and combined hospice style centres. All this clearly visible for everyone to see but once the full horror of this disease takes hold then it is right to ask the following question. For how long can the media hold the line and continue to showcase reports that, it’s true, show the level of distress the people will be suffering?

To watch as country after country pass Draconian legislation enabling them to take extreme decisions when it comes to social control is alarming and will precipitate outbursts of fear, paranoia and anger. In Europe this might be easier to control than elsewhere, and in particular the USA. At the same time as we were stocking up with pasta, lentils, rice and canned vegetables, there were queues around the block at all gunshops and purveyors of ammunition across America. With politicians in leadership positions making difficult decisions on a a daily basis the pandemic is hard enough to deal with, but to have somone that makes last minute decisions based on his gut instincts instead of listening to experts in a plethora of important fields as President of the USA is not only frightening but is also indicative of the fragility of the whole geo political system of governance.

In my view The United Nations should be convened and should take over the handling of this crisis. It is too big for crazed egoist individuals to be allowed to have control over the future wellbeing of billions of human beings through the creation of artificial states of emergency designed to prop up their own deformed political, and often corrupt, ideologies for their own gratuitous economic gain. I doubt this is going to happen until after the grisly masquerade has played out and the whole world has to clean up in the aftermath.

The plural of Pandemonium is Pandemonia. Unless there is a global approach to dealing with COVID-19 it’s quite likely we will witness the emergence of a whole swathe of cities that, for a significant period of time, will become replicas of Pandemonium, the Capital of Hell. I hope I am wrong and Trump is right when he posits a miraculously speedy recovery. Somehow though, judging by recent history, I doubt it.

Harry Rogers, March 31st 2020.

Spud Headed Spad

SPUD HEADED SPAD


A gaunt gangly spectre haunts Downing Street
This spud headed spad who speeds out the door
A Monty Python type praying mantis
Giant rucksack strapped to it’s skinny back


He runs in a John Cleese funny walk style
Away from plague infested number ten
To it’s nihilist lair to self isolate
Whilst it forces the rest to self hibernate.


The new default set to procrastinate
Journalists learn new ways to masticate
Fake four five leaches from across the pond
Key workers die in the back of beyond


The servers creak and wheeze with new data
We watch irrelevant adverts, later.

Harry Rogers in the Red Bedroom, Pencnwcau, Aberbanc, March 30th 2020.

ICE RINK

Ice rink in Madrid turned into a morgue

Dublin old bill point guns and send you home

Football stadium dormitories

Spring up all around Paris, London, Rome.

Whilst Macron freaks out his Euro neighbours,

Four five locks New York into Quarantine.

Brexiteers dreaming daily of the Blitz,

Wonder when buffoons will wheel out the Queen.

Cumberland to Devon, Cornwall to Kent,

We’re told to look out for one another.

Fuck the hoarders and all those selfish gits

Who gave Covid nineteen to my brother.

Downing Street did not practice what they preach,

I’ll not watch one more propaganda speech.

Harry Rogers In the yellow room, Pencnwau, 28th March 2020.

MILLIONS OF BRAZILIANS

Millions of Brazilians
Have witnessed all these scenes before
Paliamentary pantomime
Has locked down everybody’s doors
The army ringed now around London
Stock markets fall down through the floor
There’s no knowing where this leads us
The MPs bluster on, so sure
Their nationalistic reactions
Echoed loudly on radio four
Butterfly show goes on and on
No dreamliners fly anymore
We are told it’s for our own good
For the aged, for the poor
Evoke the spirit of the blitz
Best wishes from second world war
Spout about spiritual health
Whilst televising martial law
Soon round up any dissidents
Is that what this is really for?

Harri Rogers, in the red bedroom, Pencnwau, 19th March 2020

C O V I D 19

Recorded in Harriboy’s Hut.

C O V I D 19
1 – Cover old values in dirt
2 – Career over, virtuous institutional doings
3 – Complicated oversold vast international developments
4 – Corrupt outsized voluminous imperial druglords
5 – Callous orange voterigging incorrect dirtbag
6 – Consciously order vilification intending death
7 – Call on visionary inspirational dominoes
8 – Correctly overturn Victorian inept dukedoms
9 – Constitute octagonal video introductory deals
10 – Consult outmoded vehicular inbound data
11 – Crave oxygen vial infused datura
12 – Consider overeating vegan imported Dhansak
13 – Collect Obama virtual introduction ditties
14 – Cynically obtain villain’s imperative doldrums
15 – Climb outside votive iron dormitory
16 – Crash our vituperative invisible dogsbodies
17 – Congregate onboard Venusian interstellar dreamliners
18 – Coronaviral overkill visualizes instantaneous deprivation
19 – Collapse onto virus infected deathbed

Harri Rogers, Pencnwcau, in the Yellow Room, March 11th 2020

Now See The Vengeance

Now, see the vengeance
Reaked on the many.
Gimcrack politics,
Shone up for one day,
Like fake silver plate
Polished away, through.
Truth? Justice? Honour?
These tattered flags fly
Blown on the rubbish
Tips alongside rolled up
Banknote snorting tubes
Discarded by spads
Infected deeply
With Randian lies.
Whilst they “Get IT done”
We drown on sun drenched
Flood plains developed
By slick racketeers
Who sail sunseekers
All over the globe.
Pangolin virus,
Classless, ironic,
Infects me and you
As well as the few,
Who will more likely
Stand within six feet
Of a carrier
In an airport queue,
The automatic
Democracy of
Nature in action.
Too late, all fall down,
Red in tooth and claw,
Hail natural law.

Harri Rogers
In the red bedroom
Pencnwcau, Aberbanc
28th February 2020.

The Salisbury Incident

Article by Johnny Gaunt & Harry Rogers

The Salisbury Incident

As many governments across the Western world begin to exile their Russian diplomats back east, the most fundamental questions relating to the Skripol case remain not only unanswered, but the faintest sniff of any real evidence is yet to make an appearance before the public.
There is no doubt that Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Amber Rudd, et al, have worked hard to achieve a consensus amongst Nato and EU states, and has had some success in persuading other leaders to condemn and react to the unproven Russian involvement.
Many of these leaders, perhaps, have reasons of their own for latching on to such a flimsy agreement. France, Germany, Italy, and Holland are among a number of nations reeling from their own domestic political turbulence. Collapsing centrist parties have watched their traditional voter bases divide and file off to the left and right, as all over Europe the political polarisation hardens. Being seen to be part of a new unified front will, they hope, strengthen their domestic positions. It is a familiar response from desperate neoliberal administrations; instead of taking responsibility for the declining interest in their policies, they would rather fall back on the policy of fear in a dangerous attempt to appear ‘strong and stable’.
Manipulating fear of a common enemy of the West, brings with it certain benefits for the ruling classes. Not only does it present a superficial ‘toughness’ that leaders can exploit at home, it also makes large sections of the public easier to control and susceptible to further misinformation. Chomsky suggested: “Democratic societies can’t force people [to go to war, in this case]. Therefore, they have to control what they think.” You could also finish that sentence, “Therefore, democracy must be undermined.”
With the Skripol case we have seen the UK mass media swing into action in order to ramp up public fear, obliterate individual analysis and control the narrative of how Brits, loyal to their country, should respond. The BBC, ITN and Channel4 News outlets have each backed Theresa May’s assumptions and reactionary behaviour towards Russia. Jeremy Corbyn’s perspective, that the government needs to wait until real facts emerge about who is responsible, has been purposefully vilified and distorted by these networks, to echo George Bush’s infamous, “You’re either with us, or against us,” mentality. The BBC, for their flagship political debate programme, Newsnight, even went so far as to alter Jeremy Corbyn’s flat-cap to look more like a Russian bearskin, before pasting the doctored image onto a deep red backdrop of the Kremlin.
Heightening hysteria of a Russian threat is win-win politics for many hawkish MPs, who will gain increases in their arms industry share profits, and political leverage to turn up Defence spending. Simultaneously, the shrill is loud enough to drown out domestic criticism of such scandalous acts as cutting free school meals for a million kids from struggling families.
Of course, the main driver of much of this remains ideology. The golden rule of the British establishment has long been to stamp out any sign of socialism long before it can develop into anything meaningful; and it has done an excellent job since destroying Michael Foot’s 1983 manifesto.
It has been a long 35 years for the principled socialist. But in that time, things have changed radically. The commercial scraps from military technology found their way into public homes in the form of computers around the same time. Within 10 years, the world-wide-web had organised the internet into something accessible by the new generation, for whom computers were as everyday as television. In 2005, one of this generation, began hooking up Ivy League universities to his social media software, Facebook. The use of social media data by companies such as Cambridge Analytica to subvert global democratic processes is a negative outcome of the growth of ICT. Whilst big-data is a worrying aspect of the growth in digital industry, the ongoing rush by both Google and the Chinese government to bring about the singularity in artificial intelligence, where machines are equal in intellectual ability with human beings, is even more worrying for those of us concerned about the future of militarism. We are told that there are great social benefits that flow from AI, but the thought of autonomous weaponry making decisions on who lives and dies in the many so-called theatres of war is truly scary, and no longer just the dystopian rambling of science-fiction writers.
Whatever the truth behind the Salisbury Incident, we have witnessed the UK establishment’s completely cynical exercise in ramping up public fear of war, through the demonization of a major state. This behaviour is nothing new and has been used unsparingly since the end of the second world war; however, since 2001 and the commencement of the War on Terror, this fear and war mongering has intensified and become more frequent. These are the desperate actions of an ideologically bankrupt set of inept politicians; and, they are not exclusive to the Tory Party.
However, the establishment’s persistent use of its mainstream media arm to concuss the public into consensus, appears to be losing some of its punching power. This has been in no small part due to Jeremy Corbyn’s consistent message of doing the right thing, as in this case where he urged restraint before rushing to judgement. Nevertheless, the governments in Nato, will continue to use the threat of war to justify increasing expenditure on more and more technologically sophisticated methods of arm’s length killing, mostly of the dispossessed, in countries that don’t, or seem unlikely to, conform to Western hegemonic ideology.
Prevailing facts surrounding incidents such as the Salisbury poisoning, become almost irrelevant once the narrative has been set out; the public simply needs to choose between loyalty to, or betrayal of, Britain. Manipulation of public opinion in this way will no doubt carry on until it is either fully exposed for what it is, or until a genuine anti-war government can turn us away from the ‘unavoidable’ conflicts we are purposefully being steered towards.
Johnny Charles and Harry Rogers are both members of the Labour Party and Ceredigion Stop the War. On 28th April, the panel event, “Why the UK needs a new Foreign Policy” will take place in Aberystwyth, and will feature talks from Mark Serwotka, Lindsey German, Adam Joannes & Ayla Gol.