Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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Campaigners say Jeremy Corbyn’s trimmed beard at Glastonbury ‘in-line’ with summer guidelines

In Uncategorized on June 24, 2017 by kmflett

Beard Liberation Front

24th June

Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266

Campaigners say Jeremy Corbyn’s trimmed beard at Glastonbury ‘in-line’ with summer guidelines

Beard Liberation Front summer beard guidelines date back to Marx

The Beard Liberation Front, the informal network of beard wearers which campaigns against beardism, has said that Jeremy Corbyn’s trimmed beard when he appeared on stage at Glastonbury on Saturday afternoon was fully in-line with long standing summer guidelines

BLF organiser Keith Flett said, while there is absolutely no need to fully shave off the beard in the UK when warm temperatures occur prudent trimming is acceptable.

When in Algiers in 1882 Karl Marx had a full beard trim, as opposed to pruning, and exceptionally this is also permitted when temperatures rise in the summer.

The campaign group says that a change to warm temperatures can mean that the beard is unused to the conditions and follicles may dry out and wither unless precautions are taken.

Guidelines for maintaining the Beard in hot weather

Moderate summer trimming may be in order, following the guidelines set by Marx in 1882

If the beard starts to over-heat immersing it in the freezer cabinet of the nearest supermarket will provide an instant remedy

Hand held fans may also be used to ventilate the beard

If the beard starts to dry out in the heat and follicles become brittle immersion in a pint of craft beer will moisturise and nourish the beard

Articles

As Jeremy Corbyn appears at Glastonbury, why his campaigning style works

In Uncategorized on June 24, 2017 by kmflett

As Jeremy Corbyn appears at Glastonbury, why his campaigning style worked

What is sometimes known as the Mainstream Media (MSM) had long written off Jeremy Corbyn’s chances of doing anything but leading Labour to an electoral disaster. Yet as the results on June 8th underlined he did the opposite, increasing Labour’s share of the vote by 10%, the only leader to do this since, not Blair, but Attlee.

The tabloid press vilified Corbyn right up to Election day particularly the Sun and the Mail whose front pages before June 8th labelled Corbyn a terrorist (or possibly a pacifist who would not defend the UK depending on the day). The Guardian took a more ‘highbrow’ approach simply producing feature after feature labelling Corbyn as a ‘loser’. A couple of weeks before June 8th the paper u-turned and backed Corbyn, which was welcome, though many might say the damage had been done in the previous 2 years.

The reality is that the media simply could not understand Corbyn’s campaigning strategy, even if, as became clear on election day, many voters certainly did.

Someone on twitter (appropriately) summed up what the strategy was. Namely a combination of nineteenth century stump campaigning and twenty-first century social media. They contrasted this with a Tory campaign stuck in the late 1990s (before social media) and hence focused on the old print media. That of course explains those Sun and Mail front page splashes ranting about Corbyn.

I’ve spent a lifetime writing for and to the ‘old fashioned’ print media so I can take no satisfaction its decline but that is what happening. For example The Guardian’s print circulation is currently around 160,000 and a good deal of that is within the M25 area.

The strategy of addressing crowds in Victorian times- known as the mass platform- was disliked by the authorities and by the predecessors of New Labour alike who disliked the idea of mass mobilisation and its democratic potential.

Two strategies were employed to try and limit mass campaigning. Firstly public open spaces were fenced and controlled- Kennington Common where the Chartists had met on 10th April 1848 being an example. Secondly meetings were moved indoors and ticketed. This reduced and controlled the numbers who could attend.

Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign in 2017 returned by contrast to the mass platform. In the Victorian period the only people who would have known about this would have been those who actually attended in person or perhaps had read it in a local paper. There was no radio or TV.

In modern times it is possible that broadcast media might cover, for example, a large election rally addressed by Jeremy Corbyn- for example the 20,000 or so music fans he spoke to at Tranmere football club in late May- but as Star readers will know, mostly it will not.

The broadcast media still follows the same rules of the political game defined by those who attempted to control the mass platform after 1848. They will report what a politician says to an invited audience in a controlled space. Reporting crowds remains rare.

The genius of the Corbyn campaign, ignored by the Tories, was to understand that social media offers a way out of this.

So many will have seen pictures and short video clips of the Labour leader addressing crowds around the country during the Election campaign.

They will not have seen it of course on TV but on Twitter and Facebook.

 

It was the ability to combine old and new style campaigning that allowed Labour’s message to have the huge impact it did have on June 8th. The Tories werent even on the pitch.

 

 

 

 

Articles

Glastonbury battle for Hirsute Personality 2017 as Eavis faces Corbyn

In Uncategorized on June 23, 2017 by kmflett

Beard Liberation Front

Press release June 23rd

Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266

Glastonbury battle for Hirsute Personality 2017 as Eavis faces Corbyn

The Beard Liberation Front, the informal network of beard wearers, has said that with Beard Week set to bristle off to a start on 26th June there is a high level of interest in the Hirsute Personality of the Year poll.

The winner is announced ahead of Beard Week on Sunday 25th June.

Jeremy Corbyn won the accolade for the first time in 2016 and now faces a challenge to retain the title.

While Corbyn is ahead in the poll, Glastonbury weekend will undoubtedly boost the chances of second placed Michael Eavis with both beard wearers expected to appear on stage together at the festival

The shortlist comprises well known beard wearers, focusing not just on their place in the public eye but the gravitas and impact their beard adds to their public image and appearance.

Unlike the Beard of the Year in December, those on the short-list don’t need to have a full-time beard. Rather they need to have been in the public eye while hirsute. Neither is the contest about who has the ‘best’ beard.

The winner of the on-line poll is announced ahead of the beginning of Beard Week 2017 on June 26th. Other Awards that feature during the week, designed to promote a positive image of beards, are the Beard Friendly Sandwich of the Year, Hirsute Broadcaster of the Year and the Beard Friendly Employer of the Year.

BLF Organiser Keith Flett, said Jeremy Corbyn v Michael Eavis is a true battle of the beards, representing everything that is best about the hirsute.

Shortlist

Brian Blessed, actor

Billy Connolly, entertainer

Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of Labour Party

Michael Eavis, Glastonbury founder

Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool FC manager

Gary Lineker, Football commentator

Logan Plant, brewer

Michael Rosen, broadcaster

Ben Stokes, England cricketer

Philip Wilton, cheesemaker

Articles

Do you remember the 80s: The Alternative Economic Strategy & Robin Murray (1940-2017)

In Uncategorized on June 23, 2017 by kmflett

Robin Murray, who was one of the key architects of what in the 1980s was known as the Alternative Economic Strategy died earlier this month aged 77. The Guardian has just published an Obituary here:

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2017/jun/19/robin-murray-obituary

Mike Rustin in New Left Review 1/155 (1986) wrote an extended piece on the London Industrial Strategy in the years when Ken Livingstone was at the GLC. Murray was Chief Economic Advisor to the GLC from 1981-1986.

He also wrote a good deal on what he saw as a post-Fordist economy and strategies the left might develop to grapple with this.

In case anyone is wondering I didnt agree with much of this (from the left) and said so at the time. I dont think my position has changed but this is not the point here.

The point rather is that we are very probably at a moment when the ideas of the left on the economy and industry hold greater influence than for a good while. In that sense Murray’s work and his writings will form an important part of discussion and rightly so, even for those of us on the left who, for the most part, had other ideas.

Articles

Hirsute Personality 2017 poll

In Uncategorized on June 23, 2017 by kmflett

Beard Liberation Front

Hirsute Personality 2017 poll: closes midnight June 24th

Shortlist

Brian Blessed, actor
Billy Connolly, entertainer
Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of Labour Party
Michael Eavis, Glastonbury founder
Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool FC manager
Gary Lineker, Football commentator
Logan Plant, brewer
Michael Rosen, broadcaster
Ben Stokes, England cricketer
Philip Wilton, cheesemaker

Articles

Beard campaigners say lack of organic knitted beards at Glastonbury is unfortunate

In Uncategorized on June 23, 2017 by kmflett

Beard Liberation Front press release

23rd June

Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266

Beard campaigners say lack of organic knitted beards at Glastonbury is unfortunate

The Beard Liberation Front, the informal network of beard wearers, has said that the lack of organic knitted beards at this week’s Glastonbury festival is unfortunate.

While the festival has arranged for pre-erected tents no provision has been made for the clean shaven who want to celebrate the Beard Power of Michael Eavis and Jeremy Corbyn

BLF organiser Keith Flett said, Glastonbury 2017 is about beard power so its disappointing that no organic knitted beards are available.

Notes

Micheal Eavis faces Jeremy Corbyn for the Hirsute Personality 2017. Result on Sunday

 

 

 

 

 

Articles

Hottest day for 40 years: a new Minister for Weather required

In Uncategorized on June 22, 2017 by kmflett

Rainmaker: Denis Howell MP

21st June was the hottest day since 1976 and also marked the longest run of days when the temperature in some parts of the UK went over 30c. Considering the average temperature for June is under 20c this indicates a significant weather event..

Although we are not in the drought conditions of 1976 it is surely time for the appointment of a new Weather Minister. In 1976 Birmingham MP Denis Howell (1923-1998) performed the role admirably. Shortly after his appointment to deal with the drought in August 1976, there was torrential rain and ‘floods’ were added to his Ministerial Portfolio.

Of course there was an element of fun to the appointment, Howell suggested bath sharing to save water, but also a serious point. The impact of the weather in 1976 was considerable and Government direction was important.

In 2017 it is not so much drought but issues around air quality and the impact of hot weather on the NHS, with more people requiring treatment, that are the concerns. it clearly does not come easily to the present incumbent of No.10 to organise Government activity and interventions but there is a surfeit of Ministers who could do the job of Minister for Weather from Michael Gove to Boris Johnson…