Surveying the Wreckage

Following his “sacking” by the Indie, Jody McIntyre again took to Twitter, to issue a mini-manifesto.

I would suggest young people hit the streets tomorrow with three central demands.

DEMAND 1 – The IPCC is disbanded, and replaced with a truly independent, accountable body with NO ties to the police.

DEMAND 2 – Case of Mark Duggan, and all victims of police brutality are fully investigated, and guilty parties charged.

DEMAND 3 – David Cameron and Nick Clegg resign with immediate effect.

He is an utter cock, isn’t he?

Jody McIntyre has an ever-so-slightly inflated understanding of his own political importance and cultural significance. Outside a fraction of the readership of the Guardian and Indie, and his 10,000 twitter followers, I doubt most people have heard of him. Indeed, he isn’t even supported by all those on his Twitter feed:

The idea that he is in any position to be issuing “demands” is laughable.

Not only that: Jody McIntyre actually hasn’t the faintest idea of what has been going on. In Jody McIntyre’s mind, this is some sort of youth uprising, which will end up by demanding collective ownership of the means of production, and no doubt, freedom for Palestine (from the River to the Sea).  In reality, it is kids, chancers and gangs of criminals, stealing whatever they can transport, and burning what they can’t. For gain, and for fun.

You may have seen this video. If not, watch it now. In it, a passing gang helps a bleeding and shaken teenager to his feet. Then they rob him.

Then watch this video, by Mark Stone of Sky News, in the streets of Clapham with a hand held camera:

At 20 seconds in, there is the following exchange:

Mark Stone: I’m just astounded at what you’re doing

Girl: Well, we’re getting out taxes back

Mark Stone: You’re getting your taxes back? What do you mean by that?

Girl: Obviously, we pay tax, innit.

Mark Stone: So by stealing things you’re getting your taxes back?

There is no hidden meaning to this. This isn’t some situationist protest about the increase in university fees, or the possibly capping of housing benefit.

Rather, what the girl looter means is this. She has seen the opportunity to take something that she wants, and has therefore stolen it, believing that she won’t be caught. When challenged, she can’t think of any excuse for what she has done, so she represents her actions as some sort of tax protest. A tax protest!

I doubt the Taxpayers Alliance would support her.

Ted Jeory tells a similar story:

If anyone thought the riots were the work of boroughless scumbags working themselves across London like a rats’ invasion of the Monopoly board – wrong. Tonight I saw people I know who live here in Bow laugh and egg each other on as they took turns to dart under a wrenched open shutter into a designer clothes shop on the Roman Road called Zee & Co – and emerge, scarves around their faces, arms full of booty.

One by one – black, white, Bengali, boy, girl, most of them teenagers – they went in and out as mates laughed and cheered across the street. I followed one lad, a black boy with a barely grown striped beard in a yellow polo shirt, thinking he’d walk to a van waiting somewhere nearby.

No, nonchalantly, at about 9pm he strolled about 50ft up the road and turned left into a flat above a furniture shop. There was a Turkish bloke wearing a red cap at the door smirking as he let him in. The black boy went upstairs, dumped his loot and joined friends cheering from a first floor window. More followed him in.

These thieves live here. And so do the people watching them. Do they give a toss about the area, one where a year today the eyes of the world will be watching? No, of course not. This was their fun-filled Looting Olympics.

I watched all this in Tower Hamlets for about an hour. In that time one police van drove past. It slowed down, put on its blue lights and then sped off. What could they do? This was just one shop; along Bethnal Green Road, riot police had been deployed.

On the way back I heard these comments, one on the road where I live:

“I hear Zee’s having an open sale,” and, “I got me a load of Stoney hats, bro” [he meant Stone Island designer hats].

He continues:

I know some of the people involved last night because they live extremely close to me. They’re gang members, barely out of their teens. I’ve watched them grow up for years; their mother is an alcoholic. She doesn’t work; I presume she’s been on benefits throughout the time I’ve lived here.

She and her sons live in a lovely three storey housing association home with a garden. These kids didn’t grow up during a time of cuts. More than one person last night said quite the opposite: it was the bloated spending of the last decade which created the culture of dependency that failed to force their mother to encourage them into work. Let’s face it, they proved last night they don’t lack a certain entrepreneurial spirit. And neither are they “angry youths”.

And if Lutfur had been in Bow and along Bethnal Green Road last night, he would have noticed a couple of other things. Most of last night’s perpetrators were white and black trash scumbags who have no pride in their area and no real sense of community. They’re the ones who looted and encouraged it. In contrast, along Bethnal Green Road, there were groups of Sikh and Bengali shopkeepers standing guard outside their properties and probably prepared to fight if attacked.

This is what Lutfur should be bold enough to say today and ignore anyone who calls him racist. He should tell the returning Boris Johnson and David Cameron they can probably learn a thing or two from the East End: that much like there used to be among post-war white working classes, there is a stronger sense of family and community loyalty among Bengalis here – and they’re much more likely to stand up and defend themselves. Kind of Big Society really.

This morning, there are attempts all round London by locals to clean up their areas.

If Jody McIntyre wants to do something helpful, he might consider popping along to one.