I chatted to Richard of the Tin Foil Hats Podcast yesterday.
Finally, here is the video for my new track, Campfire. It’s a bit different from my usual sound and I know that might not be to everyone’s taste. I’m not trying to reinvent myself like Cher or anything, it’s just a natural change that came in the studio.
Me and my pal Steve (the one I’m bullying in the video) took a drive up to Glasgow to record with my pal Jono. There was zero preproduction. We had a basic acoustic track that I had written and toured a little bit around Europe, but that was it.
We sat up eating Italian food and drinking whisky, and this is what we got. I hope you like it.
It’s available at all the usual culprits, but best of all is my Bandcamp page. They rob less off me!
I think we can all agree that Donald Trump isn’t your every day, run of mill President.
See Presidents, Prime Ministers and indeed politicians in general, are taught never to give an honest answer. Swerve the question, lead the interviewer away from the original subject, or answer a question with a question. Whatever you do, don’t give up your genuine motives. Especially if they are clandestine.
You learn all this on day one of school. And while much of the population can see through this technique, as often a Government’s sinister agenda is viewable from space, at least they make the effort to conceal it.
American foreign policy has come under much scrutiny over recent years, and rightly so. An Illegal war in Iraq as well as enormous bombing campaigns and attempts to topple regimes in Afghanistan, Libya, Pakistan, Yemen, and now Syria, have left people putting together a link between the nations the United States invades, and those countries with large oil and gas reserves.
While America does pillage these nations for their natural resources, whether that be opium or gas and oil, that’s only part of the story, and is certainly not their sole purpose for being there.
The project for the new American century was published in 2000, and goes into details about what nations the US planned to topple. They are quite a way through the list already, with Iran and China on the horizon. This swift gobbling of nations has been helped considerably by the events of 9/11.
Almost a year to the day that the project for the new American century was published, New York City was attacked and the war on terror was launched. If you remember correctly, the same day the towers came down, killing over 3000 people, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu described this horrific massacre as, “a good day for Israel”. For once, Bibi wasn’t wrong.
Donald Trump describes himself as the most pro Israel president in history, and given he has already moved the US Embassy to Jeruselem, something even ultra Israel supporters like Bill Clinton and George W Bush couldn’t bring themselves to do, and more importantly, he’s thrown out the Iran nuclear deal, he’s certainly living up to his self given title.
Yesterday Donald Trump met with Russian president Vladmir Putin, in Finland. The much talked about meeting was surrounded with media furore and screams of “Traitor!” from journalists and congress alike. After all, Trump is Putin’s puppet isn’t he? If some media outlets across the USA are to be believed, Donald Trump has been an asset of the Russians since 1987.
What slipped under the carpet though, was Trumps glaring admission of his Israel first policy. Especially when it comes to the United States role in Syria.
The media is happy to parrot the unproven line that Trump and his US policy are controlled from Moscow, but no one seems, despite the clear evidence of his actions, to be able to able to take a look in the direction of Tel Aviv in search of puppet strings.
When asked if the USA and Russia would be working side by side in Syria, the Presidents answer seemed, to me at least, extraordinary.
He replied: “We’ve worked with Israel long and hard for many years, many decades. I think we’ve never – never has anyone, any country, been closer than we are.”
Who asked about Israel, Donald? We’re asking about Syria. Were you not paying attention in POTUS school? Never answer a question honestly. It looks to me like you’re saying your military presence in Syria, a sovereign nation, is at the behest of Israel. That true?
He went on: “President Putin also is helping Israel. And we both spoke with Bibi Netanyahu, and they would like to do certain things with respect to Syria, having to do with the safety of Israel. So in that respect, we absolutely would like to work in order to help Israel. And Israel would be working with us. So both countries would work jointly.”
Not content with giving Israel $38 Billion of US taxpayers money, they are also happy to send American troops into Syria, to die for the interests of the Israeli state. American citizens are being sent to kill, and be killed, for a foreign government. What happened to “Make America great again!”?
I think this unprovoked admission of foreign involvement in policy and decision making, makes Mr Trump far more of a “traitor” to the American people, than a sit down dinner with Vladmir Putin.
Here is he transcript (from @leftiblog on Twitter)
The Travelling Band project was an 8 date UK Arts Council project. Different songwriters and poets from the Derby area, were taken to a particular town or village, and given the task of writing a song in a couple of hours, and then performing that song to the people of that town or village, that evening.
Here are a couple of clips from day one in Belper, Derbyshire.
And here is the track, performed live… while reading lyrics from a sheet. My memory is pretty good, but it ain’t that good.
So, as part of an Arts Council project, we’ve been all across the county of Derbyshire, and now we’re ready to come back home with our songs.
For those that aren’t aware of this project, it’s the brain child of Alex Blood, and features artists such as myself, from the city of Derby. We travel across the county to different towns and villages, rock up around lunch time, learn about the history of the place, sink a few beers with the locals, and then write a song about it.
It all sounds pretty simple so far, the difficult part is that we need to perform that song, to the people of that community, that same evening.
We’ve been to Belper, Ilkeston, Ripley, Ashbourne, Matlock Bath, Wirksworth, and now we’re coming back to Derby, to perform all the tracks in our home city.
The show is on Thursday 31st May at The Maypole in Derby, and is free entry.
Feel free to come along and have a few beers with us, and listen to what we’ve managed to concoct in just a few hours.
It’s only in an alpha level of testing, but there is a brand new social media site called OnStellar. It’s been set up as a one stop shop that will provide everything that all the other sites provide, but in one place.
Come say hello. I’m at alpha.onstellar.com/garethicke
Last weekend me and my man Steve, travelled to the Isle of Wight to produce a music video for ‘Campfire’.
The weather was pretty grim but we had a fun time, and hopefully that will come across in the footage.
Brothers David and Darren Greenham are now doing all the hard work in post production.
Should be ready by the end of May. 🙂 x
I confess, when it comes to street art, I’m a bit of an amateur. I’ll walk past the odd bit of graffiti near my home, and might stop for a brief moment, but that’s about all the interest I have.
Call me old fashioned, but I prefer my art in a frame, above a mantel piece, and without the nauseating smell of stale urine abusing my nostrils.
So when I saw Kalen Ockerman, commonly known as Mear One, trending across social media, and in the UK press, I honestly had no idea who he was.
All I did know, if I was to believe what I was reading, was that he was an anti-Semite. He’d also managed to get Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, in a spot of bother.
In 2012 he painted a mural on a wall in Brick Lane, London. The piece was titled “Freedom for humanity” and depicted a group of elderly bankers or businessmen sitting around a board game that resembled Monopoly. The table was supported by crouching naked human figures. Above the group was an illuminati pyramid symbol, and to the side stood a protesting figure bearing a placard with the slogan “The New World Order is the enemy of humanity”.
It seems from a quick google search that Mear One received a fair bit of criticism at the time, as some people thought he was symbolizing Jewish people around the table, and that it resembled the kind of anti-Jewish propaganda found in Nazi Germany. It caused enough drama for Lutfur Rahman, then Mayor of Tower Hamlets, to demand it’s removal.
It appears that this is where Mr Corbyn made his fatal error. He clearly didn’t feel it was anti-Semitic and so 8 years ago, commented on Mear One’s Facebook post, that he felt the mural should remain.
Apparently Jeremy Corbyn’s support of Mear One’s ‘anti-Semitic’ art was so disgusting and offensive, that it’s taken SIX YEARS for anyone to be vocal about it. It just happens to be a few weeks before the local elections, but that. little coincidence is probably better saved for later on.
Corbyn has inevitably come out and made a grovelling apology. I’m not overly sure why, but it’s what politicians do. That apology has not been accepted, however, and now groups like the CAA (Campaign Against Antisemitism) are calling for a demonstration against the Labour leader on April 8th, in London.
It all feels a bit over that top to me.
I know anti-Semitism accusations against Corbyn are nothing new. It seems anyone that speaks out on behalf of the Palestinian people, is due a good old dollop of the anti-Semite slur. Again, that’s probably another coincidence that’s best left for a bit.
I took a good hard look at the artwork and tried my best to find any anti-Semitism in there. I even asked the fine people of Twitter what they thought made it racist. The only answers I seemed to get were that the old men “looked Jewish” because “they had big noses”.
So all Jewish men have big noses? That’s an odd assumption. What about the Romans? I thought they had big noses? Given you can marry into a Jewish family, how can that physical characteristic continue across the whole Jewish community, generation after generation? Of course it’s a nonsense, I have Jewish friends, and they don’t have big noses. If anything, the assumption that it’s anti-Semitic because they have big noses, could be considered anti-Ssemitic in itself.
It’s a very loose link to anti-Semitism. There must be something else to it.
“It’s because they are bankers”.
In an interview Mear One said that the images of the bankers were inspired by the Rothschild’s, Rockefeller’s and Morgan’s.
The Rothschilds! There we have it, that’s the anti-Semitic part. The Rothschild’s are a major Jewish banking family. But then I thought about the other two. The Rockefeller’s and the Morgan’s are both Christian families. Mear One was inspired by one Jewish banking family, and two Christian ones?
Again, I’m scratching my head. But as I keep checking what people are saying, this story isn’t going away. People are incensed by it.
I dig and dig and this is literally the whole of it. It’s anti-Semitic because the bankers “look Jewish”, “have big noses” and he mentioned the Rothschild family.
See for me, the bankers in the mural don’t look Jewish. They just look like six old white guys. There isn’t a Kippah on any of them. No black fedora’s in sight. So if it is meant to portray some form of Jewish dominance over humanity, the artist has kind of missed a trick.
Old men have big noses. Take a look at your Grandads nose next time you see him. Noses and ears continue to grow, and a condition called rosacea, which causes the tip to become bulbous, is very common among older gentlemen. It’s a burden that I myself will have to embrace, and I’m not, to my knowledge at least, Jewish.
I didn’t really want this to turn into a biology lesson, but I thought it was important the nose part was dealt with.
So now we come to the Rothschild part. As I mentioned earlier, Mear One mentioned three banking families as part of his inspiration. So why are we ignoring the Rockefeller’s and the Morgan’s? Are we ignoring them because they AREN’T Jewish? If so, for what possible reason is there for that glaring omission? Are some people trying to find anti-Semitism in this, whether it is there or not?
For me, it’s one of four scenarios.
1. People believe that Mear One is an anti-Semite. Perhaps because of prior artwork, or comments he’s made, they feel he holds an anti Jewish stance, and with that in mind, he almost certainly means the bankers to portray Jews.
Now this may be the case. I don’t know the guy. I have contacted him to see if he is interested in an interview, to give his side of the story. Hopefully he will oblige and we’ll be able to get a little more depth to the situation.
2. The local elections are coming up, and a positive showing for Corbyn’s Labour will almost all but put the nail in the coffin of any of the Blairite back stabbers. They have wanted him gone since before he was even elected leader, and judging by Stephen Kinnock’s reaction to Labours fantastic General Election showing, they would rather remain in opposition than lead the Country under Corbyn.
This wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest. In the last weeks his own party members have lambasted him for daring to ask for evidence before throwing the kitchen sink at a nuclear powerhouse, in the wake of the Skirpal poisoning. Evidence we are yet to see, I might add.
3. The Israeli lobby are trying to smear Corbyn as they are terrified of him coming to power. His pro Palestinian stance would be a major stumbling block for them. The UK is the always unquestioning Allie when it comes to the Israeli regime, and they won’t want that to change.
This one will probably be the one out of the four that is filed under “conspiracy theory”. However, lets not forget the Israeli lobby have form when it comes to undermining pro Palestinian MPs. The Al Jazeera undercover documentary “The Lobby” showed how Shai Masot, an Israeli embassy official has been caught on camera in an undercover sting plotting to “take down” MPs regarded as hostile, including foreign office minister Sir Alan Duncan, an outspoken supporter of a Palestinian state.
Masot said that Corbyn was “Crazy” and that he had set up a youth-wing of the Conservative Friends of Israel in 2015 and wanted to do the same inside the Labour Party, but had been unsuccessful because of the “crisis” surrounding Corbyn’s election as leader.
4. Certain people are above criticism because they are Jewish.
This is perhaps the most alarming of the four scenarios. Why is any negativity towards the Rothschild family any different to negativity towards the Rockefeller family, or the Morgan family? Why is anyone above any scrutiny because of their religion or family heritage?
Not all Jews are bankers that have caused unknown heartache to the poor and working classes. That should go without saying, in the same way that not all Muslims support ISIS and want to take over your neighbourhood with calls to prayer and force your daughter to wear a hijab. Not all Catholics support pedophile priests and forcing young girls to have babies they don’t want or can’t care for.
But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be allowed to criticize those Muslims and Catholics that do support the things I just mentioned. The same should, in my opinion, go for the Rothschild family.
For these reasons, I am still at a loss when it comes to finding anti Semitism in the artwork of Mear One. All I see is rich bankers playing with unreal wealth, amassed on the backs of hard working people across the World. That’s not racist, that’s historically accurate. Isn’t it?