Physical Mediumship Debate and Wider Issues

Following my second physical seance earlier this month, a bitter debate has broken out on some Spiritualist websites around the issue of physical seances held in the dark.

This is usually essential because ectoplasm is such a dangerous substance. Exuded from the body of the medium, if exposed to light or suddenly grabbed it shoots back into the medium’s body causing burns which can prove fatal. This is how Helen Duncan, the famous Scottish medium, died in 1956 when skeptics shone flashlights and tried to grab the ectoplasm during a seance.

In the past some physical mediums have been able to demonstrate materializations in subdued red light or even full white light. However this level of mediumship takes decades of development, though some mediums such as David Thompson and Stewart Alexander are sometimes permitted to perform in red light part of the time.

Questions are asked as to why infra-red cameras or night vision goggles can’t be worn. The reason is the radiation these emit which affect the ectoplasm. However a video was taken with a special camera outside the seance room apparently (thru a glass partition I believe) at a Thompson seance some years ago showing his guide William partly materializing. It is not, however, as clear as it might be. I have seen it myself.

Pictures have been taken of many physical mediums producing ectoplasm, and the substance has been analyzed and found to be produced from various bodily fluids, including insulin.

Once exuded from the medium (in trance) in the confines of a darkened seance room the ectoplasm can form into very solid shapes and assume the likeness of human flesh (hence full and partial materializations of humans). These ectoplasmic human forms have been seen in red light to slowly disintegrate and sink into the floor (seance rooms are fully examined to exclude the existence of hidden trap doors, incidentally).  Ectoplasm can also form steel-like rods to lift objects and move them around at very fast speeds in the dark without hitting the medium or any of the sitters. I have witnessed this myself, described in a previous blog (cardboard cones with luminous strips known as ‘spiritualist trumpets’ in the recent seance I attended.)

The medium’s heavy chair was also levitated with him strapped in it, and at a previous seance a sitter described how he was allowed to feel the chair with the medium strapped in it levitated and turned upside down, so the legs were on the ceiling! When turned the right way up, the chair legs felt floppy like rubber, being partly dematerialized.

Apports are also quite common in physical seances – material objects dematerialized at a distance and re-materialized in the seance room. This happened at many of the Scole experiments a few years ago. Something our orthodox scientists have also been trying to do, but haven’t yet been able to perfect.

The ultimate goal of all physical mediumship is to develop sufficiently to be able to perform in at least subdued red light so the materilizations can be seen as well as felt and heard. Experiments are taking place with a new type of substance, probably a type of ectoplasm with the more dangerous substances removed.

If all this sounds like complete poppycock to skeptics they should, perhaps, be aware that it is fully explainable in the new scientific theories of people like Ron Pearson, whose work has been published in Russian scientific journals among other places and endorsed by many other scientists. Pearson’s theories correct the flaws in some of Einstein’s which have led science up some blind alleys. Even Albert Einstein himself admitted before he died that he may well have got a lot of things wrong, but many scientists are reluctant to accept this as it means orthodox science has ended up in a kind of cul-de-sac juggling with theories like ‘dark energy’, etc. to try to explain the many anomalies where Einstein’s theories don’t fit with the observations of the continually accelerating expansion of the Universe.

Neither do they sit comfortably with Quantum Physics, with which Einstein was never really comfortable. Quantum theory and experiments show that matter cannot exist without a conscious observer, and that certain sub-atomic particles can be in two or more places at once many miles or thousands of miles apart or more and yet they communicate instantaneously and react simultaneously.

Pearson’s model of the Big Breed rather than the Big Bang Universe explains everything paranormal and fits in with Quantum Physics, also with the continually accelerating expansion of the Universe with no need to invent things like ‘dark energy’ to explain it. His model is based on an intelligent matrix connecting everything and responsible for the continuous creation and organization of matter. Some would call it ‘God’, ‘Jehovah’, ‘Allah’, ‘Spirit’ or something similar, Pearson calls it by the more scientific term ‘intelligent ether’ or ‘i-ther’ permeating everything.

Physical mediumship is but one manifestion of the fact that everything is essentially energy, ‘spirit’ or consciousness, and it is this which creates the illusion of matter, which even Einsten agreed upon: solid matter is a complete illusion.

Along with physical mediumship we now have many other ways of obtaining evidence of survival of death by humans and animals and all living things and that mind and consciousness is separate from the living brain: Clairvoyance, ITC/EVP  (Instrumental TransCommunication/Electronic Voice Phenomena), NDE’s (Near Death Experiences), OOBE’s (Out Of the Body Experiences), Remote Viewing (used by intelligence services to spy at long distances without the use of satellites, spy-planes, etc.).

Soviet scientists in the 1930s discovered Kirlian photography which can capture the aura of all living things. Soviet atheist scientists described this as ‘bioplasma’ and proved that the bioplasma body was the blueprint for the physical body, and could survive damage to it. Indeed Kirlian photography has apparently been able to photograph the bioplasma body (or spirit/astral body) leaving the physical at the point of death.

There is now no doubt whatsoever that mind and consciousness exist quite separately from the living brain, which is akin to a radio receiver. We are all part of a greater whole, not just our Higher Selves in the Spirit realm but our Soul Group and ultimately we are connected to all other living things and Source itself (what some call ‘God’).

In this century orthodox science will catch up and Pearson’s theories are bound to be accepted, and those of other scientists who dare to think outside the box like him. This is how science has always progressed in the past, thanks to mavericks who defy the conventional theories. People like Gallileo, for instance, pronounced a heretic in his day but ultimately proved right – the Earth was NOT the center of the Universe.

Physical mediumship is but a small part of the proof that we all survive what we know as ‘death’. It, along with many other phenomena and experimentation, will continue to develop and prove once and for all that our conscious self is eternal.

Once this is universally accepted, it holds tremendous consequences for how we behave during our time on Earth. It involves facing up to the reality of karma or the law of cause and effect. Every action we take or even think has a reaction, so nobody but nobody can get away without facing the consequences, be they good or bad, positive or negative. The encouraging thing, however, is that spiritual development is open to all and eventually all who wish to will overcome negative karma and progress to higher states of existence.

Silly Season?

Seems as if we’re well into it,  not helped by the silly weather. July/August came in April bringing all the flowers out up to a month early, now we’re enjoying April showers in August. I’ve only been able to go swimming on 6 occasions this summer (outdoors that is), so must be the worst summer since I retired in May 2007, and all those 5 summers have been pretty poor.

Now bitter arguments have broken out on websites linked to two areas I’m interested in, one to do with music and the other with Spirituality.

There were the riots, arson and looting in London and other British cities, and now we have the situation in Libya. These are very serious matters, of course, but how and why are the questions I am asking. Why were things allowed to develop to a point where gangs could start riots while police just stood and watched, according to many reports? Why were armed gangs allowed to rule so many city areas for years?

Why was Col. Gadaffi talking to Condoleeza Rice not so long ago and brought in from the cold, and now he is enemy #1? Why are the rebel factions in that country being helped by NATO and not a UN force? Why does NATO even exist 20 years after the Cold War ended and the Warsaw Pact was disbanded?

Why has Col. Gadaffi joined the ranks of Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden in being in favor with the U.S. at one time and then the embodiment of all evil? Why Gadaffi and not the feudal dictatorship in Saudi Arabia, for instance? Couldn’t possibly be because USA gets a lot of Saudi’s oil could it?

North Korea has said it is ready for talks and to abandon its nuclear weapons program, but do we hear much about that in the media? Of course North Korea doesn’t have vast amounts of oil to be grabbed by U.S. oil companies, unlike many places in the Middle East. It is just an annoying fleabite in comparison to various rebel factions in North Africa who, if not aided by NATO, might cut off the oil supply to the West once they’ve fought among themselves to see who will be the successor to the present dictatorial regimes. Hopefully more democratic governments will emerge from the chaos in Libya and elsewhere, but there’s no guarantee. The West will be content with another despot so long as the oil supply is secured, and the same applies to Iraq, Afghanistan and other areas where there are mineral and other resources to exploit.

I hope things calm down in all these areas in the next few weeks. And that the weather improves for my holiday in September. If it does, let’s hope it’s not the ‘wrong kind of sun’ like we had earlier in the year, or the railways will stop, as they do for the ‘wrong kind of leaves’ in Autumn and the ‘wrong kind of snow’ in Winter. Come to think of it, it’s Silly Season all year round for the railways at least.

 

 

David Thompson Physical Seance

Last night I attended my second physical seance, again with David Thompson. This time I knew exactly what to expect, and I’d had plenty of time in the last few months to take in the first seance and analyze it. I’ve no doubts that these are genuine physical seances with genuine phenomena.

This time the trumpet manipulations by the little boy, Tim, were much more impressive than at the last seance. ‘Trumpets’ are cardboard megaphones with luminous strips so you can see them in the darkened seance room. They are sometimes used in Direct Voice to amplify the voices of the spirits. These trumpets moved about at a fast rate, high up and low down. One came right up close to the guy sitting next to me – right in front of his face in fact. No way could a human being have done this in the dark.

Quentin Crisp came through this time and sounded just as he did in life. I asked a question relating to when I saw him perform and he answered my question in the Q. and A. session after he gave a lecture on ‘Style’. I’d asked whether a famous singer (Jerry Lee Lewis in fact) has style when he says he doesn’t want a headstone on his grave, he wants a monument. Quentin the spirit couldn’t remember exactly what he answered (well he had loads of questions to answer at every performance), but thought he’d have said something about the way you live deciding whether or not you had style. This corresponds to Quentin’s answer when alive: that the point was to have style while you were still alive; it didn’t matter when you were dead. I remarked at the seance that Quentin clearly still had style, even though now dead. Still very camp, for instance. When he said he wasn’t fully materialized, Christine (Dave’s partner) asked which parts were materialized, and Quentin said: ‘Wouldn’t you like to know!’

Louis Armstrong came through again, said a few words and this time sang ‘Hello Dolly!’ (last time it was ‘Wonderful World’). It too sounded just like him.

The little boy, Tim, brought through three communicators with personal messages for sitters. I was extremely fortunate and honored as there were about 50 people in the room yet the first personal message was for me. Tim said he had someone for Tony, but there were two Tonys in the room. The other one was sitting behind me and had a beard, but Tim said this communication was for me, the Tony without a beard.

First time communicators using this method often find it very difficult to use the ectoplasm to materialize and create a voice. Some only manage a whisper. Tim announced that my partner wanted to communicate and when he started to come through to encourage him by speaking and calling him by name, which I did.

I have to say I didn’t recognize George’s voice, but then he hasn’t used it for 20 years. Communication on the Other Side is by telepathy, and this is how he has often communicated with me over the last two decades. It is often difficult for spirits to remember their voice on Earth in order to re-create it. Regular communicators like William (David’s guide), Tim and Mae (the African American woman from the Deep South) have had plenty of practice to get their voices right. All three came through at this seance. And of course Louis Armstrong and Quentin Crisp, who have also had lots of practice and were clearly recognizable by their voices.

Although George was born in Glasgow, he’d lost his Scottish accent by the time I met him, and sure enough the voice I heard at the seance had an English accent. He put his two materialized hands on my face, and they felt like his hands. Small, not big like William’s who touched several people who all remarked on his large hands (William touched me at the last seance). I should emphasize that all the sitters were in a circle holding hands whenever spirits were materialized.

George spoke with a soft voice, as he did when alive most of the time. Indeed he used to hate answering the telephone because of his soft voice. George mentioned the number 28 which I took to mean the number of years we were together on this Earth. Actually it was just over 21 years, but this could be explained in several ways. First time and ages mean very little in the Spirit world where there is no time as such. He may have got confused with his age when he passed over – 48. Or he may have been including the early years after he passed over when I got many remarkable spontaneous telepathic and other messages from him. Anyway he said our time on Earth together seemed to go very fast (I can’t remember the exact words he used, it was over in blink of an eye or something similar.)

He said I was very good to him, but that he was a ‘pain’. George might well say something like this and it echoes what a channeler gave me from George last year (again not in the voice he had in life, but in an English accent.) On that occasion George said that he had been selfish. I don’t think he was particularly selfish or a pain, yet some other people see it that way. I remarked that I too could be a pain at times, so I guess we both could. It certainly was a difficult relationship which had to be worked on, like many relationships. It was not helped or made any easier by George’s addiction to amphetemines, without which he couldn’t operate at all towards the end. One channeler has remarked to me that this addiction alone was indicative of ‘selfish’ behavior. I see it more as an unfortunate fact of life reflecting the lifestyle of many in the 1960s, when he became addicted.

George then gave me a name which was completely unexpected: ‘Sandy’. This was the name of Freddie Williams’ dog, and was very evidential. Probably more so than mentioning any of his human friends who would be in my mind, but Sandy certainly wasn’t so no question of telepathy being involved.

Freddie was in his 70s when we met him, and always worried what might happen to Sandy if he died suddenly. Whenever Freddie felt unwell he’d open the front door to his council flat so Sandy could escape if Freddie died. When Freddie did die we were also worried about Sandy, but it transpired that a relative had got into the flat and found Freddie deceased, and also they found and rescued Sandy before the dog died of starvation or thirst. So George mentioning Sandy was relevant and the dog must now be on the other side. I have many photos of George petting dogs we encountered on various holidays abroad, and when I first knew him on more than one occasion he arrived at my place with some stray dog he’d found before handing it in to an animal rescue center. He really loved animals.

Of course no medium or channeler can guarantee that spirits who come through are who they claim to be. It is possible to have spirit imposters pretending to be who they are not. Although it didn’t sound like George’s voice in life it did feel like his energy, with a feminine quality to it. He said he told me he’d try to come back. I dont’ quite remember if he actually said this, but he was very spiritual so he may well have said this sometime or other, probably after we’d seen a medium as we did occasionally. In any case we are in contact regularly by telepathic and other methods and have been ever since he passed over. But to come back physically with a voice and materialized hands – this was more than I could ever have expected, so I am very grateful to George, David and all who made this possible.

At the seance George asked me not to forget him, and of course I won’t and couldn’t because of our ongoing contact, and because he was such a big part of my life and still is. He explained he wanted to come through at the last seance but wasn’t allowed to (possibly because of lack of time, and there is only a limited amount of time/energy in these physical seances, which take a lot out of the medium who is physically exhausted afterwards.)

I have ways of confirming spirit messages from George using his dictionary opened at random, and I did this when I got home this morning. I am satisfied from the message I got via this method that it was George. He said, via his dictionary, that I would discover an explanation (for the different voice) by looking towards the South.

This is extremely evidential as I had already decided to ask Victor Zammit about the voice, Victor being an Australian ex-lawyer and afterlife researcher who I’m in constant contact with via his weekly Afterlife Reports. Victor is also a close friend of the medium David Thompson and Christine his partner, and they hold regular seances in Sydney, Australia where they are based. Victor will certainly be able to explain how spirits learn to reproduce something approximating their voices on Earth.

Via his dictionary George then went on to explain it himself, saying reproducing your voice as in life was a skill which took training in order to become expert at it. He mentioned Elders being in charge (giving him permission to communicate in this manner for instance.) He also said, via his dictionary, that there had been uninterrupted action through a sort of jugglery since his death. This is certainly true since he and I have devised or juggled with various methods to communicate, and it has indeed been uninterrupted over the last two decades. However, until very recently when I learnt to channel spirits at will more or less, most of the remarkable telepathic messages helping me find things he’d hidden in our flat, and answering questions I’d put to him in posthumous letters I’d written to him, came in the first few years after he passed to Spirit.  Not to put too fine a pont on it, this very clear two-way communication in the years after his passing could account for the confusion over the number of years we were together.

Finally I asked George, via his old dictionary, what had actually happened at this seance, and the answer came straight back: an opening or rift (between this world and the next). Couldn’t be much plainer. Oh one other thing – years ago, up by his memorial tree, I got the telepathic message from George: David is the one. So I guess he felt back then if he was ever to materialize or speak to me directly, it would be with the help of David Thompson. I don’t know any other Davids.

A most interesting seance and experience, which I feel privileged to have been allowed to attend, and for the second time in a few months.

(Extracts of a channeled message from my life-partner about the seance follow as a Comment. It explains the difficulties he had communicating. The message was channeled telepathically thru me.

A second comment is Victor Zammit’s explanation of the difficulties first-time communicators can experience at physical seances.)

Middlesex – a very strange ‘county’

Middlesex Guildhall (now the Supreme Court), Westminster.

It is still very common to see places in outer west and northwest London described as being in the non-existent county of Middlesex, as in Greenford, Twickenham, Wembley, etc. In fact the county was abolished in 1965, and only lingered on as a postal address until 1996 when postcodes replaced the need for county names. As many places are no longer in counties, these old names have become superfluous and unnecessary in postal addresses.

Middlesex, being so close to the capital, always had many strange anomalies. Due to boundary changes in the 19th Century the whole southeast of the county, which included the location of the Guildhall and many other administrative centers, were transferred to the London County Council. Prior to that Middlesex bordered the tiny square mile of the ancient City of London. In 1965 the rest of the county of Middlesex became incorporated into the new Greater London authority, except for some small areas in the north and southwest which were transferred to Hertfordshire and Surrey respectively.

The 19th Century county changes meant that Middlesex was the only county to have its guildhall in another county – Westminster in the heart of London. Middlesex Guildhall was used as a high court for years, but is now the location of the newly created Supreme Court (previously the House of Lords performed this function).

Even before abolition in 1965, many areas of Middlesex did not include the county name in postal addresses. Places like Tottenham, Hornsey, Wood Green, Edmonton, etc. had London postal districts. I lived in Wood Green in the 1950s and very early 1960s, and my school/college came under the Middlesex education authority. However our postal district was London N22. No mention of ‘Middlesex’ in the postal address at all.

So many places in the county of Middlesex had a postal address of London before 1965, many administrative offices and the Guildhall were in the neighboring county of London, and from 1965 until 1996 many places in northwest and west London outside the London postal district had to include the non-existent county of Middlesex in the postal address, and this practice still lingers on. Similarly outer London districts formerly in neighboring counties like Bromley (Kent), Romford (Essex), Barnet (Hertfordshire) and Croydon (Surrey) became part of Greater London in 1965, yet due to snobbishness and the reluctance of the Post Office to allocate London postal districts to all of Greater London these former county names still had to be included in postal addresses from 1965 till 1996 even though these places were no longer in those counties. This practice also still lingers on, though a postcode is in fact now sufficient.

All these anomalies spring from the fact that London grew so big it warranted a county and then an administrative region (Greater London) of its own. So where I now live (Battersea) is now part of the London Borough of Wandsworth, but was formerly in the London County Council area which covered inner London, and before that was in the county of Surrey.

Two famous cricket grounds in London, the Oval in Kennington and Lords in St John’s Wood are the home of the Surrey and Middlesex teams respectively although of course the Oval hasn’t been in Surrey for well over a century, and Middlesex hasn’t existed since early 1965.

Many hospitals were named after the county of Middlesex, including the one where I was born in the heart of London just off Oxford Street. Sadly this splendid 1930s building was demolished in an act of wanton vandalism after it was announced it would be converted into a hotel for the 2012 Olympics and thereafter. It would have made a splendid hotel. I presume, since nobody has bothered to tell me, that I can now get my surgical shoe insoles from another hospital.

Going back to the county of Middlesex, the name also still lingers on when referring to the banks of the River Thames in outer West and Southwest London as the Middlesex and Surrey banks.

Conspiracy!

Before I took early retirement at the end of May 2007 I was looking forward to spending long, hot summers most of the day up Hampstead Mixed Bathing Pond. When working the afternoon/early evening shift I did manage a couple of hours up there on hot days before going into work, so was lucky in that respect.

However there was clearly a conspiracy to wreck my retirement plans. Since 2006 we have not had a decent summer with lots of hot weather. So far this year I’ve managed 5 occasions when I could have an outdoor swim and sunbathe – two up Hampstead, two at the Serpentine Lido in Hyde Park and one day in Brighton. Oh well, hope to get to Hastings to see a friend later this month or possibly next month, and booked on holiday in the Isle of Wight with my mother for week of her 97th birthday. Maybe I’ll get some swimming/sunbathing in then.

Of course it’s all the fault of David Cameron and Nick Clegg, and before them the previous Conservative leaders of ‘New Labour’ – Gordon Brown and Tony Blair. They all conspired to plan these disappointing summers just to wreck my retirement plans. A charming elderly lady in the 1960s pointed out these conspiracies to me when she came in CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) head office where I worked listing everything that was wrong anywhere in the world and adding at the end of each sentence: ‘Of course it’s all that dreadful Harold Wilson’s fault!’

Politicians! You can’t even trust them with the weather. Now during the 13 years of Tory rule in the 1950s/early 1960s under Churchill, Eden, Macmillan, Home and Heath we had marvelous summers, usually spent at Margate. As Harold Macmillan said, obviously referring to the beautiful hot summers we had every year: ‘You’ve never had it so good!’

It all changed with Maggie Thatcher, of course, when she rationed the free sunshine in her cutback of public services. Rumor has it that the Con-Dem Coalition is planning to privatize the sunshine and we’ll have to pay thru the nose by the hour to pay for the big fat cat bonuses for the new directors of unlimitedsunshine.com

Bastards! Give us back our hot summers and free sunshine. As you’ll see from pictures and caption below, Chairman Mao insured the Chinese people always had plenty of free sunshine.

‘Chairman Mao, The Great Red Sun In Our Hearts!’

Riots in UK

Although I haven’t published a blog on the current terrible situation in the UK, I have been busy posting comments on Facebook and I also wrote a letter to the ‘Weekly Worker’ newspaper which I hope they publish, condemning not only the riots but the idea, shared by the U.S. Constitution, that there should be a ‘right to bear arms’. Just imagine how much worse things would be if guns were even more freely available, bearing in mind these riots started when police shot a gang member who was armed with a gun. OK, so it hadn’t yet been fired, but who knows what might have happened? The fact is anyone with a gun is going to be seen by armed police as a legitimate target. Even if they throw the weapon down, they could have more guns on their person.

The riots which broke out all over London then spread to other cities were all caused mainly by young people, some not even teenagers yet, and they seemed to regard it as ‘fun’ to riot, loot and set buildings on fire, including people’s livelihoods and private homes. The parents of many of these teenagers and young people must be regarded as criminals themselves and accessories to their crimes as most of the kids are too young to have homes of their own. Therefore they must be coming back to their parents’ houses loaded with stolen goods looted from stores in the riots.

Now people have died because of the riots – three men of Asian ethnic origin deliberately run over in a car as they tried to defend their neighborhoold from rioters, and an elderly man in his 60s also has suffered life-threatening injuries. Many have lost their homes.

The reaction of the police and authorities has been too slow, too little and too late. Both the Prime Minister and the Mayor of London were abroad and did not come  back for days.

As to the police, they are now doing their best to contain the riots and prevent further outbreaks, but what have they done, or been allowed to do, over the past few years when teenage armed gangs based around drug culture ruled whole areas, stabbed and shot each other over territory wars, etc.? Precious little despite Operation Trident (investigating black-on-black murders and gun crime). The reason is possibly ‘political correctness’ and fear of stirring up more racial prejudice and violence.

Not all the gang members and looters are black or of ethnic origins, but the fact that a large percentage are has perhaps been part of the reason the government has been reluctant to crush the gang culture before it got completely out of hand and created this total anarchy on our city streets.

There are widespread calls to bring back National Service, if not for all teenagers, at least for those involved in the looting and rioting. I think this would be the worst possible thing; putting guns into their hands and training them in better ways to kill people then sending them abroad to places like Afghanistan to kill, rape and loot civilians at will, which is probably what would happen.

However compulsory community service for all teenagers (male and female), and certainly for all in armed gangs, found with knives or guns on them, and for all involved in the riots and looting is something I would fully support. Indeed I have been urging for compulsory community service for all teenagers or at least those in gangs for quite some time. This community service would not be military, but would be a disciplined environment (possibly boot camps for the most rebellious) in which they learn respect for society, and to help the most vulnerable, including the elderly and disabled. Also where they learn to improve the environment by cleaning up graffitti, and in the latest situation, rebuilding the communities, shops and homes the rioters and looters have destroyed.

As to how to prevent armed gang warfare, rioting and looting on our city streets, well I’ve not seen a policeman around my council estate or the surrounding streets for I can’t think how long, except after serious incidents have already occurred. Not even last nite and Clapham Junction (scene of arson, rioting and looting) is less than half a mile away. Other areas, including Wood Green next to Tottenham, had a huge police presence, so probably did Clapham Junction itself. But this is only for a few nites, this level of policing cannot be sustained as it involves cancelation of leave, extra shifts, drawing in police from other areas, etc.

Despite all this the government still intends to go ahead with cutting the numbers of police (already invisible in normal circumstances on our streets, until after incidents have already occurred). They have also cut many other public services, including those which would be helping to get unemployed and bored youths off the streets and into useful activities or even jobs.

I am basically a pacifist, but I have long argued that in this age of armed gang warfare on our city streets, and now rioting, arson and looting, we can no longer have the luxury of an unarmed police force, still less an unarmed police force which is not constantly visible on our streets.

Most other countries have lightly armed police visible on their streets, and I see no reason why Britain should be the exception. Even unarmed police constantly patrolling would be a deterrent, but we cannot expect our police officers to effectively confront armed gang members and rioters like we’ve seen this past week unless the police officers have some sort of weapons better than truncheons to defend themselves and apprehend the law breakers.

As to ‘stop and search’, a very sensitive issue, it is time to stop pussy-footing around. The police cannot operate effectively with one arm tied behind their backs. They must be allowed to stop and search all those in the community they feel are most likely to be carrying arms, and as I’ve said before on these blogs this is not likely to be some wealthy person living in Hampstead. It is much more likely to be a teenager living on run-down council estate with a high crime rate. It is also a fact that a large percentage of these teenagers will be of ethnic family origin.

This fact must not prevent them being stopped and searched. Indeed all law-abiding citizens should be willing to be stopped and searched by police, but inevitably this must be targeted and teenagers must get used to being stopped and searched very regularly at least until this gang culture and the rioting culture has been banished from our society. Only then can we hopefully return to something approaching normality.

As to how to defeat the rioters and looters, there must be a permanently increased police and security presence on our city streets, and if necessary the army should be brought in. They should, in any case, be brought back from places like Iraq and Afghanistan where they have no right to be in the first place, and combatting the anarchy in our cities would be a much more worthwhile job for them. Any world policing should be done by a UN force under the authority of the UN General Assembly, not by the UK, USA or NATO alone.

On our city streets baton rounds (plastic bullets) and water cannon should be deployed in riot situations. Curfews should be announced. If these measures don’t work, then it may be necessary to even declare martial law and announce that looters and rioters will be shot on sight with real bullets by the army. If this sounds very extreme from a pacifist, and likely to create more racial violence especially if a young black person is shot by police, then I say it cannot get much worse than it already is. Hopefully just the threat of shooting on sight with live bullets any looters or rioters will have the required deterrent effect.

However this is only half the story. In the longer term serious efforts must be made to totally reform our sick materialist society. Dangling expensive luxury goods in front of the eyes of those who cannot afford them and implying everybody should have them is asking for trouble, but this is the capitalist system, especially in the wake of Thatcher’s ‘get rich and damn everybody else’ society.

What is needed is a good dose of old-fashioned Socialism – real Socialism which puts the emphasis on a caring society and comradeship. Where there are no overpaid, over-perked, corrupt bureaucrats and politicians. Or indeed a good dose of Humanism or any religious creed which does not divide people, but teaches them decent, civilized behavior and concern for other people, especially the disadvantaged. Any creed, in fact, which places spiritual values above materialistic ones, which places the good of society and other people above personal material gain.

There are, however, no excuses for the kind of scenes we have seen on Britain’s city streets this week. Capitalism and materialism is no excuse for this type of behavior, which will make things much worse and not change society for the better. Working-class people are one of the main victims of this violence, not the rich in their millionaires’ apartments and mansions, nor the politicians and others in the leafy affluent suburbs and rural towns and communities. That is not a call to take the violence into these affluent communities, it is just pointing out the fact that the rioters, arsonists and looters are making working-class people live in fear, and in destroying businesses making the unemployment situation even worse.

Any change in society must be brought about by disciplined, organized worker and unemployed people’s solidarity operating thru the ballot box and trade union movement, thru worker and consumer cooperatives, and similar initiatives. Only if and when the peaceful and parliamentary road is blocked should more direct action be taken, and then this must be restrained and organized, such as widespread strikes to enforce the will of the people. Peaceful revolutions brought about the collapse of many dictatorships abroad, but violent revolutions nearly always brought about a repressive regime, often with brutality and injustice towards the very people they sought to champion.

Yes it may be necessary in extreme circumstances where innocent lives are threatened to resort to arms, but these must always be discriminate and never indiscriminate. They should only be used in extreme life-threatening situations and then only by fully trained, disciplined security forces whether these be the police, security forces of the UN or individual nations, or indeed disciplined workers’ militias seeking to prevent striking workers from being shot.

Giving every person the ‘right to bear arms’ is a recipe for disaster. It is turning a blind eye to so much armed gang warfare that has brought us to the present catastrophic situation.

I await to read the response of readers and column writers of the Weekly Worker tomorrow to the riots, arson and looting. I have already told them, in my letter which I hope they publish, that if the response does not satisfy me I will cut my recent ties with both the publication and its sponsor, the CPGB Provisional Central Committee. One question I have asked in this letter is what the ‘right to bear arms’ in their policy actually means: the right of who to bear what arms and in what circumstances? If it is giving every maniac a gun, I said, then I’m outta here.