Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Yemen: A Front Too Far?

This is a very interesting development. For some time Saudi Arabia has been involved in the Yemeni civil war, fighting on the side of the Yemeni government against the "insurgents". For the past year or so, the US has been covertly involved in Yemen on the Saudi side (in its usual role as global mercenary), undertaking "cadre" operations to train up the counter-insurgency teams there.

An interesting coincidence, then, that the Detroit wannabe turrist bomber is now being linked with Yemen, despite being Nigerian. A bit like the 9/11 guys were linked with Iraq despite being Saudi Arabian - but we digress. And now, President Obama is making it very clear that he's going to be embroiling the US very overtly indeed in Yemen in the coming months, despite the US being already committed to two other wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

So who's pulling whose strings? Manuscripts Don't Burn would subtly suggest that the Saudi royal family have enormous influence in US government circles, as we know from 9/11 and its aftermath, plus their buddy-buddy relationship with the Bush dynasty. Perhaps the Saudis aren't having as easy a time of it in Yemen as they'd've liked, and are calling in US favours?

One thing's for sure: 2010 is going to be a watershed. Global trends analysts are already raising warning flags that anti-Americanism and anti-NATOism are at their peak since 9/11, and that we've pissed off so many people in the Muslim world that a major terror event is very likely on the cards. In such an event, the global economy simply isn't strong enough to withstand the shock; the gold spike and subsequent dollar crisis would likely cause the whole house of cards to collapse.

Is that what's forcing America's hand? Fighting a war on three fronts just sounds historically stupid - but maybe it's the lesser of two evils? Given that Israel absolutely seems to be itching to bomb the hell out of Iran, and Iran has already said it will strike back, Manuscripts Don't Burn is probably quietly grateful that the CIA "regime change" ops currently engineering the so-called Green Revolution in Iran appears to be bearing fruit.

Manuscripts Don't Burn is a history fan. Of reading history, that is. And we don't mind saying, the current situation looks grim, grimmer than it has since WW2. The international tensions are at breaking point, and the US seems to be thrashing around wildly in its attempts to secure energy resources into the next decade, and not giving a damn who pays the price. At the moment the global economy is a global fake, and it's only our complicit media that's papering over the cracks. But the strain is starting to show; dollar collapse, bond strikes, and preemptive wars seem the order of the day for the next 12 months.

Looking back at our predictions for 2009, we made one major mistake: we failed to reckon with how much future agony our governments would commit us to in order to stave off pain today. When faced with the need for painful restructuring, our governments continued to borrow (print) money, plunging us (the taxpayers) into intolerable debt for the next generation, if not more. The depth of the irresponsibility has been breathtaking, exceeded only by the willing blindness of the gullible proles swallowing the party line and refusing to see the reality of where we're headed.

So - what's it to be? Chaotic collapse? Preemptive war? Global default (probably starting with the US and UK)? Trade wars? As usual, impossible to say. But one thing seems clear: 2010 will be the year of the Black Swan, the unpredictable straw that breaks the camel's back. This time next year, the Second Great Depression will be truly underway, and people may even be permitted to speak its name in public. After that, it's only a matter of time before gold repatriation kicks in again, commodity prices continue to deflate, and currency inflation reduces people's buying power to Depression levels.

It's not looking like a good year...

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Global Consciousness Glimpsed From a Distance

A lot of what's happening in Copenhagen and elsewhere at the moment reminds Manuscripts Don't Burn of H.G. Wells' "The Shape of Things to Come", when a clumsy, ad hoc, and largely self-interested bunch of airplane flyers kick and scream and gradually drag the world towards a single government. The government they create isn't necessarily any good, and is eventually superceded by something a darn sight better after a period of dissatisfaction and revolution, but it *started* there, as the first sign of a nascent global consciousness appeared.

Manuscripts Don't Burn gets a similar vibe out of Copenhagen, the financial collapse (accidental or engineered), the post-Cold War struggle for who defines the New World Order, and the shenanigans following the collapse of the Berlin Wall. At the moment the Old Guard and the military-industrial-financial complex are still desperately trying to call the shots, and hold most of the cards, but institutions and concepts are being born at the moment which are radically different from what's gone before. We don't doubt that the corporate fascists would *love* a global government on their terms, but the very fact that political and economic action on a global scale is even conceivable speaks volumes.

We're not dewy-eyed and messianic about this. Like most times of great change this is going to be chaotic, violent, and dangerous. But it's interesting at least to see something potentially positive peeking through the cracks. Manuscripts Don't Burn has no doubt at all that we WON'T get our shit together to stave off the worst effects of the climatic instability facing us (regardless of whether we're responsible or not, it's still happening), and millions will starve, be rendered homeless, and so on. But possibly Copenhagen will mark the start of regular summits where the chaotic, disunited rabble of the global community can get together for regular rows, coercion, and chest-thumping - and maybe muddle-headedly navigate us through the turbulence ahead. Cause for optimism? Individually, no. Collectively... well, that's up to us all.

Monday, 14 December 2009

End of Days...

There's a strange mood about in the UK these days. A strange sense of denial, of "apres-moi-le-deluge", of hysterical ignoring of the thundering juggernaut about to crush everyday life in the UK beneath its feet.

In 2009 the slow-motion economic crash continued unabated. Pensions were destroyed, wages fell, and the UK economy entered a deflationary depressionary spiral as imports (oil, gas, food) prices inflated. Unemployment rose, taxes rose, public debt exploded out of control as more and more money was siphoned out of the economy and into the pockets of fat cats and corrupt corporate banksters. The wool continued to be pulled over the eyes of the public, bread and circuses on TV, artificial news in the media, blatant lies from the corporate government.

A sense of unreality often precedes pivotal events. The French revolution, the Russian revolution, the Nazi takeover, the Great Depression; and now the Long Depression, and likely collapse of the UK. Everywhere you look, wealth is being withdrawn from the UK. The signs of catastrophe are everywhere; the UK is worse than bankrupt, and there is nothing to bail it out with. The corrupt corporate government is conducting a scorched earth policy, hosing the public with impossible future debt and giving it all to their corporate chums, while lying to the people that it's all for their own good.

History will look back on this period and condemn us for our inactivity, our flagant stupidity right in the face of all evidence that we are being sold down the river.

Manuscripts Don't Burn increasingly sees in the blogosphere statements like "oh, please, just get it over with", "stop making it worse", "time to get a grip". In some ways, that would be wrong. This time, it looks like the UK will have to collapse completely, lose all its arrogance and hysterical self-deception, to be able to face up to the *massive* job of rebuilding which will have to be done. Tragically, by then the thieving bastards who caused this collapse will have made off scot-free, laughing with glee as the poor proles shoulder the burden for a generation or more.

2010 is going to be a very interesting year...

Sunday, 8 November 2009

The Bloodless Civil War finally speaks its name

Six months after Manuscripts Don't Burn last posted on the developing "Bloodless Civil War" in the West, the UK Guardian and Observer newspapers have finally begun to speak out about this elephant in the room - that our government is on the ropes, thanks to the attacks of the corporate fascist business interests, including big banksters and media tycoons.

Let us be under no illusions about this Civil War: we are LOSING. We are well on the road to fascism in the UK - the corporate fascists, through their control of the media, have distracted the public's attention away from their fraudulent theft of BILLIONS of UK taxpayer current and future earnings, and focussed them on the mere PENNIES which the MPs (admittedly greedily, foolishly, and in bad faith) have been squeezing out of the system.

The result is an emasculated government, unable to resist the inroads of the corporate fascists, who can set baying mobs of proles on them at the drop of a headline. It's an extremely worrying situation when the government is fighting the interests of the corporate fascists AGAINST the interests of the people it's supposed to represent.

It's truly alarming how history repeats itself. Just when you need a government strong enough to resist the corporate fascists in big business and media from removing even more of your civil rights and pouring ever of your taxpayers' money into their back pockets, you have a government which must waste its time utterly on the defensive as the corporate media instigate witch-hunts about cleaning bills and decorating expenses for *PENNIES*, while BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS of pounds disappear unaccountably into private pockets. Focus on people's natural resentment for authority, distracting them from the biggest corporate heist in history.

"Hey - MP! Give us some more BILLIONS in bailout money, or we'll get our mates to run some more articles about your twenty-grand expenses, your career will be toast... heh heh heh."

You can see where all this is heading. Next stop: a nice clean corporate revolution to replace all these shoddy MPs with some nice shiny people who all the papers and television stations say are brilliant, so of course they must be. And who just happen to be great friends with those nice businessmen. And in the meantime, your savings shrink, prices soar, and you spend the next 2 generations paying off the money you're giving to the corporates while your standard of living heads back to the thirties.

Well, as long as they put some scapegoat MPs in the stocks and let you pour your hatred on them, it's okay, isn't it?

Recipe for coup d'etat: discredit the current government; create conditions of extreme poverty, instability, unemployment; foment disorder; identify scapegoats; step in and "restore order". Manipulate the proles correctly and they'll cheer you all the way, and even volunteer to make their own chains...

So what can we do? The key to this dilemma is in our own minds. Time and again Manuscripts Don't Burn sees accusations flung of being "left-wing" or "right-wing" as the chaos intensifies. But this is the point: these days, the old right wing vs left wing dichotomy is yet another corporate-sponsored straw man.

Let's repeat that: this isn't about left-wing versus right-wing.

There are many things which unite all of us across the political spectrum against the usurpation of our political system by corporate interests, and promoting a false opposition between "right wing" and "left wing" serves only to divide us when we shouldn't be. It serves the corporate interests perfectly to encourage the illusion that we should fight one another, not them.

The dichotomy today is not between right wing and left wing, but between corporate corruption, and elected government. Corporate corruption doesn't care what shade of political colour it goes by - that's just window-dressing, witness the fact that it currently makes no odds whether new labour or tory are in power. Corporate corruption wants to remain in the shadows, distracting us with lights, smoke, and mirrors of the familiar pea-under-the-shell of so-called parliamentary democracy. We have a one party corporate state masquerading as a two-party democratic one. Plus the Lib Dems, the only party with any real policies - and look what the corporate media nobblers have done to them - no one will vote for them with a barge pole.

Until we realise that it's our democratic system we're actually fighting for, and not some ephemeral old-fashioned right vs left, the corporates will continue to win, leaving us dazzled and distracted.

All believers in a democratic system, right wing or left wing or whatever, need to join forces to kick these bastards in the nuts and reclaim our country. All else is delusion.

Bring back Glass Steagal. Prosecute these bastards. Dismantle the corporate fascist machine of big business-government-media before it finally tears our society apart.

Ironic it's the anniversary of the Wall. They're building another, right now, and we're letting them.

But Manuscripts Don't Burn says this: we're onto you, you bastards. Spread the word. This will not stand.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

The Second English Civil War has begun

Manuscripts Don't Burn would like to comment on the (currently) bloodless civil war developing in the United Kingdom.

Up until the moment the economy began to collapse, the UK had been increasingly ruled by a cartel of government / civil service, media and press barons, and big business - a particularly chummy form of corporate fascism. Recently that cartel has started to come apart at the seams, and we are witness to (and in many cases victims of) the fallout.

Where did it start?

The media used to be so *friendly* with the government, towing the party line and casting positive spin on its antics as it sucked up to the banksters. Alternative voices were squashed, all in the name of "growth", "profit", and "efficiency". The media were the public face of big business (indeed, being OWNED by big business, they could be little else), but as big business began to own government, too, the media increasingly showered praise on the political class. One, big, happy corporate fascist dictatorship, milking the proles and living off the fat of the land.

Then, at some point the government started to clamp down on public freedoms, in preparation for the inevitable economic collapse. 911 was the catalyst; it postponed the recession which the 1998 crisis should have precipitated, and gave governments breathing space to put draconian laws in place. Somewhere that crossed over to include press freedoms, and investigative journalists were laid off in their thousands. As recently as the G20, the government tacitly authorised our out-of-control police force to beat up journalists at the G20 et al. And all the time, public pressure mounted on the government to take actions which ran counter to what big business wanted to see - endless bailouts, and the distribution of wealth from the poor to the rich: the usual solutions to a depression.

So - the tax hike for the high earners. A sop to the masses. More than hurting the pockets of media and press barons, and banksters alike (although the latter are still stuffing their pockets with "windfall" bailouts as quickly as they can), that stung the corporate fascists' pride. How dare this government act against them! Don't they know who they work for? Almost immediately afterwards, the "expenses scandal" breaks out. A status quo which has existed for decades is suddenly in the spotlight, and the government is in the media's firing line.

Coincidence? No such thing. It's a power struggle, a confused, crappy struggle, between short-sighted greedy vested interests. The factions aren't even clear-drawn; there are parts of the government fighting the media and the banksters, parts collaborating, parts just trying to get by any old how whilst they stuff their pockets and head off to better climes.

At times like this, beware of distractions. Beware, too, of being manipulated. The media, instructed by their press baron owners and bankster chums, *want* the government pilloried until it backs down or collapses.

And heaven forbid we should get media-led political reform. Guess whose benefit that would work towards?

Not ours, comrades. Not ours. None of this is for our benefit - it never is.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

No Revolution, please, we're British

Aren't we living in strange times? You know when something is DEEPLY wrong when the Daily Telegraph starts calling for revolution. You know you're being manipulated into something unspeakably unpalatable when conservative broadsheets start talking about ditching a political system 300 years old for something more "efficient". Now where have we heard that before...

Britain's political system is hardly modern or forward-thinking. It's a muddle-headed hybrid of old and new, traditionally held together by a dose of common sense and respect for past and hope for future. However, as we've seen, it's open to terrible abuse.

The classic sign of a society's descent into banana republic territory is the abandonment of the principle of the universal applicability of the Law. When politicians get away with fraud, the police with assault, and the banksters with outright treasonable theft, and nothing is done, while the rest of us are fined and harrassed for putting our rubbish in the wrong bins, you know we've lost the plot. And then when the SAME politicians and their corporate media overlords start wittering about revolution, you know the game's afoot: the abandonment of lawful government stands before us, the hysterical seizing of a political and economic free-for-all which will lay this country waste.

Manuscripts Don't Burn believes the UK stands on a knife edge. The media is profoundly culpable in manipulating the public to a point where we're ready to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Doesn't anybody know their history? No, of course not: 30 years of educational denudation has put paid to that. Revolutions are DISASTROUS, people! Wake up! They're invariably led by a small cabal of middle-class business interests whipping the masses up into a frenzy, and serve to replace one lot of predictable bastards with another, wholly unknown and unpredictable lot. Let's have a think about revolutions for a moment, and see how successful they were: English Revolution, led to Cromwell and the banning of Christmas; French Revolution, led to cultural carnage and the dictator Napoleon; the Russian Revolution, led to 70 years oppression; the Nazi Revolution - 'nuff said; the Chinese Revolution - 30 million dead; the Cambodian Revolution - Pol Pot and the Year Zero; the Iranian Revolution - hanging gays from the top of cranes. We could go on. There's ONE - maybe - example to counter this litany of chaos and disaster: the American Revolution, which chucked out the British monarchy and started the Great American Experiment. But perhaps that failed with the coup d'etat after Kennedy's death; it's a little too early to say.

Get the message? REVOLUTIONS DON'T WORK.

So what does? TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION. The rule of law MUST be reaffirmed. And, of course, that's the last thing the politicians, police, and banksters want. So, instead, they're trying to con us into abandoning our social system and delivering our futures lock, stock, and barrel into their authoritarian hands.

As students of history, Manuscripts Don't Burn doesn't hold out much hope for a happy outcome for the UK. Economically bankrupt, it's about to enter a political Dark Night of the Soul. Our only hope is that in 10 or 20 years time, when it emerges from its suffering, it'll emerge as a more grown-up, responsible, and less hysterical society. Something a little more... European...

Good luck everyone.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Cor... ain't it quiet?

Is it us, or has everything suddenly gone quiet on the economic cataclysm front since Obama's Imperial Passage? Sure, we've had plenty of police brutality and slanderous emails to keep our salacious palates slaked, but - erm, hello? The global economy, vanishing up its own backside with a dreadful, schlupping sound? Anybody?

Noooo... It's the elephant in the room. Manuscripts Don't Burn would like to break radio silence following the media fanfare today that - Thank God! - we've finally had a month where we've ACTUALLY had deflation, despite the corporate media and government banging on incessantly about how HUGE the danger is. And we only had to cook the books a bit! Huzzah!

Here's our question: is anybody out there actually experiencing deflation in their everyday lives? Mmm? No. Thought not. Next question: is anybody out there actually experiencing humongous inflationary problems with council taxes, utility bills, even food, whilst their wages / salaries / pensions / incomes remain static, if not falling? Whoa there! Thought so!

Yup, they're lying to us again. And we're swallowing it. Doesn't anybody *read* histories of the Great Depression? We're now heading for the nightmare scenario: falling wages and out of control inflation. God help those of us who have debt.

Bottom line: in order to justify stuffing their pockets with taxpayers money past, present, and future, it's necessary for the Powers That Be to convince us all there's a terrible, terrible danger for life, liberty, and the Safety of the Whole Goddamn World if they don't. And deflation is the bugbear.

Ask any economist who isn't on the payroll of the corporate fascists. A bank is failing? Let it fail. We'll have 12 months economic mayhem as all the banks go bust, then we'll straighten out. But no - capitalism is all about the socialization of the losses of the rich, ie the poor people pay for the rich people's losses by increased taxes. So that's what we're being forced to swallow, like it or not. This way, the agony will drag out for the next 3 years, churning through the real economy, creating massive unemployment, collapse, civil unrest, shortages, misery, and probably down and out rationing, war, and clamp-down. Then, when we finally hit rockbottom and we've finally given absolutely everything we've got to the Corporate Feudalists, and are all much, much, poorer, we'll have a nice decade of austerity and backbreaking work to build it all up again. Lest we forget? Don't make us laugh.

Here's another one, a "Lest We Forget" for the 21st century: BOHICA. Bend Over, Here It Comes Again.

Beware Chancellors saying it'll be over by Christmas! Just as well that nice Mr Obama is such a smiley, smiley man. Lovely. Ration coupon, anybody? Or how about a nice war bonds? Got to do your bit!

Thursday, 29 January 2009


Time to roll out the old Goebbels quote:

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.

The lie we're being told now is the biggest in our lifetimes. It's the biggest crime Manuscripts Don't Burn has seen in the UK in all our lives. It's so big, so brazen, and so obvious, most people would rather not see it at all.

We've said it before in these pages and elsewhere, and doubtless we'll say it again: the rich bastards are re-appropriating all the country's wealth. They're stealing your assets from you. It's the biggest redistribution of wealth in the UK since the Second World War. It reverses the post-war redistribution of wealth from rich to poor - since 1980 with Maggie's "reforms" we've been seeing a gradual retrenchment, a transfer of wealth *backwards*, from poor to rich. Via cheap mortgages, plentiful debt, and now this manufactured economic crisis, we are being returned to an economic status quo of roughly pre-WW1 proportions. Vast numbers of us are being reduced to poverty; to miserable indentured tenancy in cramped slums; to precariousness, illiteracy, malnourishment, and ill-health.

And it is DELIBERATE. Make no mistake. This is not the government going "oops! we accidentally screwed up the entire economy beyond all recognition, ah well you'll have to pay for it for the next couple of generations whilst we give all your money to these nice banking chaps". No - this is no "whoops, missus" moment - this is clear, damning evidence that the British corporate government is NOT ACTING IN THE INTERESTS OF ITS POPULATION.

We'll stop now. It's as clear as day. But well-meaning folk keep trying to give those Nice Mr Government people advice on how they can make it all better. THEY DON'T WANT TO. THEY'RE GIVING YOUR FUTURE EARNINGS TO THE RICH.

It's like turkeys voting for Christmas.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Ask Not What Your Banks Can Do For You...

People keep assuming that this disastrous situation is some kind of accident. That our political leaders have somehow been terrible silly-billies and - oops! - accidentally impoverished most of the population of the UK for a generation to come and given all the money to a bunch of cut-throat rich bastards. Whoops! Golly - how silly of them! Can't think what came over them...

This situation is deliberate, and unfolding correctly. Thirty years ago Maggie commenced a great redistribution of wealth in the UK, from the poor to the rich, reversing the more egalitarian redistributions which had taken place since the Second World War. This "great redistribution" has continued steadily since, with each successive government simply being clerks and spokespeople for the big business and landed interests who pushed onwards with this redistribution at all costs. This so-called "collapse" is simply another stage in this process.

We now face a return to the pre-war status quo - possibly even pre-WW1 status quo - of a vastly impoverished majority living lives of indebted indenture in squalid tenements whilst a minority corporacy pull the strings of government and economy. And, to recap, none of this is accidental - it's been happening gradually, over the past generation.

The problem is of course that most people are trying to resolve this situation as if it is some big, silly mistake, some oops-missus accident that just accidentally happens to land BILLIONS of taxpayer pounds in the pockets of the super-rich, at the head of an unprecendented massive transfer of assets (property, etc) from poor to rich.

Let's be clear: we will achieve no solution whilst we treat this situation as an accident. The government, the banks, the corporacy, are managing this so-called collapse in their own interests, and simply foster talk of fixes as a distraction whilst sequential bailouts transfer ever-increasing amounts of wealth into their pockets at our expense.

We will only resolve this situation once we recognise that the "system" is ACTIVELY BEING MANAGED AGAINST OUR OWN INTERESTS. Tony Benn, bless his cotton socks, once said that the best thing about democracy was that it was possible to change government without bloodshed.

Not this time, Tony. This time, they're even making us pay for our own handcuffs...

Manuscripts Don't Burn is afraid civil disobedience or abject submission are the only "choices" here. Knowing the mindset of the British, we (along with hundreds of thousands of others) have provisionally liquidated our assets and left the country... We see no need to starve in an open prison and be forced to pay for the privilege.

Monday, 19 January 2009

Economic Collapse: Golem XIV summarises the situation again

On this historic day, Manuscripts Don't Burn would like to present Guardian commentator GolemXIV's excellent summary of the UK government's latest bailout plan. Thank you GolemXIV! The lunatics are indeed running the asylum; we see dark days of protest and bloodshed ahead.


This could be the most expensive suicide note in history!

This plan is exchanging a possible run on the banks with a possible run on the whole country, its tax base, and its currency.

Let's be clear about what we are insuring. We are going to insure stuff that the insurance world refuses to insure. How great is that. Insurers such as AIG did insure this stuff. Only problem is AIG itself is bankrupt. Bailed out three times already for over $100B and still dropping like a stone.

We are going to insure securities and derivatives based on Mortgage and corporate debts. Very many, if not most, originated in the US. By definition all these debts are close to worthless. And yet we are going to guarantee to pay the morons who bought the assets - or derivatives based on the value of those assets - either the full price tey paid or something near to it.

Which raises the question - To what level are we insuring them? If it's up to the full face value then as a nation this is a suicide note. I can only hope the insurance is based on a much lower valuation of but shares. But my guess is that even if there is a lower valuation it will still be suicidally high. Only the higher value will please the 'markets'. AKA the people who created the mess in the first place.

Why are they doing this? The reasoning is that the banks are going to continue to take massive losses. They all know this. The governments don't want to have to pay huge lumps of cash to cover these losses before they have to. Cash injections are large lumps. Insurance is only paid as and when each 'asset' has to come to the market and be declare formally dead. So insuring means we don't have to make one vast lump payment.

The down side however, is that our potential losses are potentially unlimited.

I know Darling says they will look at the assets and declare a limit. Yeah fine. But in practical terms the insurance plan will only 'restore confidence' if it is seen to work over the long term going forward. Which means even if they declare a limit, when we reach that limit they will be force do t extend it. For if they don't then all the money spent up to that point will have been wasted. SO the government will tell us we can't waste all the money spent so far, we must 'see it through'.

I know they banks will 'pay' us a premium. But that premium will be paid with the cash we gave them 6 months ago. So they won't be paying anything.

We don't have any of the money we are pledging. And what is more we are not going to be able to borrow it. So we are going to print.


The Great Depression Phase 2 - The Crash Quickens Pace

This morning, the British government announced its plans to insure all the crap debt the UK banking system has taken upon itself, effectively bankrupting the country. This is a historic moment: rather than a rapid, precipitous collapse, and a possible rebuilding in a 2-5 year timeframe, resulting in a new economic status quo where the reckless fat cats have gone to the wall in accordance with their beloved "market forces", our supine government has once again shown its loyalty is to big business, and not to the British electorate. It has elected to give unlimited guarantees to the debt-ridden financial sector, thereby turning a 2-5 recession into a Depression which will last a minimum of 10 years. The last time the UK took on a debt liability of this size was the Second World War: it took 50 years to pay that off. This at least is what we are looking at again.

Manuscripts Don't Burn has said this again and again: the biggest wealth transfer in history, from poor to rich, continues apace, reversing all the social egalitarian successes of the post-war era. When the dust settles, we will be back in 1910, with most of the population living as impoverished tenants working off indenture and grateful for the crumbs thrown from the tables of the rich.

But first - the collapse of sterling, hyperinflation, and national bankruptcy. Only now does the tip of the CDS iceberg begin to heave into view.

The fat cats are stuffing their pockets with what little is left of taxpayers' assets, and presumably leaving these shores like rats deserting a sinking ship. Manuscripts Don't Burn took its "assets" and left the UK years ago for saner climes - mene mene tekel upharsin being scrawled everywhere we looked.

And then, of course, the ship sinks. Sauve qui peut, because NOBODY else will.

Friday, 16 January 2009

Life on Mars

Quite a remarkable event is transpiring in the British media today. Yesterday evening, a NASA press conference announced they had "probably" found life on Mars. In typical NASA speak, they refused to give qualitative confirmations, banging on about the need for verification, confirmation, more research, more evidence, but as everyone knows, the only way NASA will ever confirm life on Mars is if they actually have a little green guy in a bottle they can shake at the cameras of the world.

So, everyone with an ounce of sense and perception - and a knowledge of how the scientific process actively mitigates against definitive statements - understood yesterday's press conference to be saying: "We think we've found signs of life. We're not absolutely sure, but we're really excited, and we think all other Mars missions should now be dedicated to confirming our findings".

Epochal. World-changing. And completely ignored in the UK (and, indeed, global) media with the exception of The Sun. Not wanting to be a conspiracy theorist, Manuscripts Don't Burn would like to ask: what the hell are the rest of you guys on? We've more than likely just found life on Mars, and you're banging on about Liverpool footballers and Foxy Knoxy's trial?

Congratulations, UK media. You have now achieved a state of permanent irrelevance. Life goes on elsewhere, apace, but not on your pages!

Thursday, 1 January 2009

An Alternative New Year Message...

The media is awash with prognostication today, most drawing on some pre-war "all pull together" subtext either suggesting that everything's about to collapse and go to hell in a handcart, or that somehow, magically, a solution will appear if we all just knuckle under and do as we're told.

Manuscripts Don't Burn doesn't think any of this is anywhere near good enough. We have an emergent global civilization, enough technology and sophistication to resolve world poverty, hunger, destitution, and homelessness at a fraction of the cost of the cynical jobs-for-the-boys of the War on Turr, and instead we piss it all up against the wall and congratulate ourselves for being so liberal with our irrigational generosity.

We need a slap in the face, now more than ever. Just as our economic miracle is about to catapult us into poverty, civil unrest, and the danger of yet-another artificially instigated war (to wipe out the old surpluses and generate some REAL demand...), Manuscripts Don't Burn would just like to offer a lone voice, crying out amidst the censorship of cacophony that the modern world has become. In Kafka's The Trial, Josef K happens by "chance" into a cathedral, where a preacher is waiting for him in the pulpit. Josef K approaches, passive-aggressive, "what are you looking at", "I'm doing everything I can". The preacher leans over from the pulpit, his face an appalling picture of horror as though seeing a man walking blindly over a precipice, and cries "WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING?"

Manuscripts Don't Burn would like to offer this post in the same spirit.

The time is overdue for us to realise that all of us in Western Civilization are guilty of a singular failure of imagination. The levels of technology and sophistication we have achieved could - TODAY - be being used to ensure that basic food, shelter, utilities, education, and healthcare for the whole globe should be unconditionally free and a basic human right. To ensure that once these rudimentary basics of life are finally given free, gratis, for granted, we could all get on with the real business of life - personal development, societal improvement, evolving into what we believe we should be, rather than floundering in the muck.

We should be disgusted with ourselves, that instead of embracing this bright new future, we have voluntarily opted to remain in a stagnant late Capitalism where a bunch of cynical criminals are allowed to manipulate our societies with artificial war, conflict, and scarcity, so that all of our wealth- and livelihood-creation is syphoned off into their bottomless fat cat pockets, and the rest of us have to keep buggering about spending all of our pointless days scrabbling around for a roof over our heads and enough food for eat - when in reality there is of course already plenty to go round.

The time is long past for a collective decision that this IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH, and we finally have to pull our fingers out, take responsibility for our civilization, and do something about this absurd situation of self-imprisonment and self-impoverishment in the name of some dodgy outdated ideology.

Our civilization has the power to GET BRAVE AND CREATIVE AGAIN; the strength to say no to crapness and cynicism, to dare to dream to aim for something better.

Sometimes in history we reach turning points, when a brave hand and a willing imagination could take our civilization a quantum leap forward. We had one after the Second World War; the history of the past 30 years have been one of the retrenchment of the old guard to try and tear down those hard-won social and cultural achievements in the name of a divisive inequality. Here we are again; this time, the odds are stacked against us, and the reactionaries have their pockets wide open to receive the last few drops of blood they can squeeze out of us. Hands up who's prepared to keep assuming the position?