Mikhail Prokhorov and The Guardian

January 13, 2012 at 8:52 pm (censorship, Cross-post, Free Speech, Guardian, plutocrats, Russia)

By Respresenting the Mambo

I think it’s worth drawing your attention this little tidbit, dear reader.

Yesterday evening [the day before yesterday, now - JD] an article appeared on the Guardian website supposedly written by prominent Russian tycoon and politician, Mikhail Prokhorov. You can read it here if you are so inclined. It is pretty desperate stuff however.

Prokhorov is an extremely dodgy man indeed with longstanding links to the Kremlin and has been guilty of some frankly unbelievable things in his attempts to enrich himself over the years, just check this out, and it is bewildering that he is being given column inches by a publication that claims to be a great believer in democracy and liberal values. The man is a Kremlin stooge and part of a generation of gangsters who enriched themselves enormously at the expense  of ordinary Russians, many of whom were impoverished by the wave of privatizations of the Yeltsin years. His possible candidacy for the Russian presidency next year is fairly obviously a ploy by the Kremlin to deflect liberal anger into a safe cul-de-sac and thus ensure a Putin re-election.

Naturally the article, and the bare-faced hypocrisy of its contents and past record of it’s author drew a rapid, righteous and abusive response on the comment pages. Many valid points were made about his record and the ridiculousness of such a man being given a platform by the Guardian of all people. I joined in with my usual mixture of biting wit and searing political commentary, and made the point that sadly the Russian opposition was fairly weak, and linked to my earlier article on the sad state of the Russian Communist Party.

And then the comment fuction was promptly shut down with no explanation. A large number of the critical comments were deleted. They contained nothing that normally invokes the ire of the moderators, just honest, left-wing political criticism of the man and his appalling record.

Why was this? What were they so worried about?

It was then re-opened the following morning and has been ever since. But instead of being blocked subsequent critical comments have just vanished. I put my comment back in mid-morning (it was a quiet day at work……) and a short while later it had completely gone, along with numerous other comments backing me up. Normally the entry is there but the contents have been blocked. These have just vanished. There is a gap between 1105 and 1305 of no comments at all.

All very mysterious. Why did the Guardian do this? Are they really trying to protect this man from criticism? Have they lost their minds? Or is something else going on here?

It’s sad indeed that even the Telegraph allows basically a free-for-all in its discussions but the Guardian runs a section called “Comment is Free” that is moderated in such a crass and anti-democratic fashion.

28 Comments

  1. Dodgydosser said,

    What you’ve said is really scary and depressing. As you say we don’t expect the Guardian to behave like a Soviet newspaper.

  2. Matthew Blott said,

    There’s some odd activity at Cif, you really have to be careful you don’t upset them or one of their totalitarian apologists. I’ll tell you my story, bear with me but it involves that great Hamas mouthpiece Seamus Milne – someone particularly sensitive and wh has effectively removed me. I upset him once by posting a wiki link to some of his activities and received an angry response by Milne himself in the comment section (some insult was thrown at me, probably neocon, which I’m not). But then later I got an even angrier email from someone at The Guardian, threatening me that I would be blocked from the site. Since then I’ve always followed a couple of rules when I post – don’t indulge in profanity and personal abuse and try to stay on topic. So, a while passed then eventually I posted a comment on another of Milne’s pieces – trying to make the Anders Brevik affair some international conspiracy like the great Islamic terror plots to show the double standards of European law enforcement. Or something like that. Anyway, you the article was the following …

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jul/28/rage-muslims-no-loner-breivik?commentpage=last

    To which I posted the following …

    “First, Britain historically is a Christian nation and those describing themselves as either Christians or cultural Christians is in the region of 90 per cent (if non-believing cultural Christians like myself are included) – about the same number of the white population. How many of this number are Christian fundamentalists or symapthisers of such a view (or of the far-right views in general)? A very minute number. On the other hand what is the ratio for the muslim population? Of course (as we always are told) the “”overwhelming majority”” aren’t terrorists but an unhealthy number are certainly sympathetic to what once upon a time those on the left would regard as extremist viewpoints – sharia law, woman’s place in the world, gay rights etc

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1510866/Poll-reveals-40pc-of-Muslims-want-sharia-law-in-UK.html

    Perhaps you think Sir Iqbal Sacranie, Yusuf Islam and Tariq Ramadan are moderates. These mainstream opinion formers have endorsed sharia law and death to apostates and death for blasphemers at various times yet they get treated with deference by the political class and particularly those on the left such as yourself.

    Second, though tempting, you can draw too many conclusions from the actions of one nutter intent on causing mayham. And Breivik was a lone nutter – there has been no evidence to come to light that he acted with anyone else. Socities are always under that particular threat and one individual can cause a lot of damage if motivated enough. The terror plots of the right have tended to be small – as the examples we have seen have illustrated whilst those of Islamic terrorists we have seen have tended to be well organised and funded – often internationally.

    So I’m not surprised the intelligence services regard Islamic terrorism as a greater threat. I know that’s not how you would like to see it because you are in denial about the problems in the muslim community but I’m afraid that’s just how it is.”

    Opinionated? Sure, but compared to the anti-semitism and other hateful stuff that you see on Cif not that bad really. Sure enough I got a few hundred recommends but then I couldn’t access The Guardian site – my ip address had been blocked! Eventually later I was allowed back but could no longer comment and had to seek approval.
    I tried once and after 45 minutes a comment of mine on another thread was allowed to appear – something really banal as I didn’t see the point in getting blocked completely. But I no longer comment on the site, a 45 minute plus delay makes it not worthwhile as you can’t join in the discussion. And that’s how Seamus Milne and the Guardian’s “Comment is Free” operate.

  3. Roger said,

    Just strikes me as par for the course: the Guardian is not and has never been a left-wing newspaper – only a Baudrillardian simulacrum of one.

  4. Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

    “The man is a Kremlin stooge and part of a generation of gangsters who enriched themselves enormously at the expense of ordinary Russians, many of whom were impoverished by the wave of privatizations of the Yeltsin years.”

    the ‘ordinary russians’ have only themselves to blame. at the time they cheered the cunts on. a bit like the dozy fuckking scum who voted for thatcher in the uk. utter scum – fuck them all.

  5. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaow! said,

    Roger is correct. The Graun is a liberal paper and as is well known (and borne out by years of bitter experience) liberals and social democrats are the handmaidens of fascism.

    • Roger said,

      Remind me: who was it who recommended a vote for Nick Clegg’s gang?

      Its a classic abusive relationship – they betray you again and again but with each new betrayal they get a little deeper into your head and make a life without them ever more inconceivable.

    • Matthew Blott said,

      What a silly comment. It was the Daily Mail and The Times supporting Hitler in the 1930s.

  6. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaow! said,

    guardian types told everyone to vote for corporal clogg. that’s how demented they are. and most of their ‘readers’ did in fact vote for clooggy. that’s how shit in the head they are

    • Roger said,

      Wow – you reminded me before I even hit send….

  7. SteveH said,

    I can’t count the number of times I have been banned, had comments removed from this site.

    Maybe the Guardian just think you are total idiots who demean their very existence?

    PS I think banning the racist cunt Matthew Blott was a good idea.

    • Matthew Blott said,

      Cunt, what evidence do you have I’m racist?

      • Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

        tyh e fact that you espouse racist ideology is somewhat of a giveaway. you piece of shit racist cvuntT.

  8. Jim Denham said,

    SteveH: you are regularly banned from this site because of your apololitical abuse and antisemitism. We have done so openly and after much provocation. Eventually, you always crawl back and we can’t be arsed to re-ban you for a while, until you write something particularly ignorant and/or offensive again.

    A large number of people (myself included) have been banned (or at least put into “pre-moderation”) by CIF simply because the CIF’s so-called “community moderators” don’t like what we say – this seems to be especially true of anyone who criticises Seamus Milne. I have commented on this several times before here at Shiraz, and have reproduced my exchanges with the “community moderators.” At one point a “community moderator” told me that the term “islamo-fascist” was unacceptable (not just that he or she disagreed with it as a term, but that use of it was, apparently, grounds for banning me from CIF).

    Btw Shiraz operates a far, far more liberal comments policy than Seymour’s Tomb and Socialist Unity-Mitford, both of which operate a permament ban on yours truly.

  9. Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

    Jim is correct in what he says.

  10. SteveH said,

    “Btw Shiraz operates a far, far more liberal comments policy than Seymour’s Tomb and Socialist Unity-Mitford, both of which operate a permament ban on yours truly.”

    Maybe so but I doubt it, if you had the traffic of those sites you would be banning just as many I suspect, but anyway the point is who was it who said, “Let he who is without sin….”?

    “you are regularly banned from this site because of your apololitical abuse”

    Again who was it who said “Let he who is without sin….”?

    Also why has Blott not been banned or even attacked in any comments above for his blatantly racist comments? If I had made those generalisations against Jews (which I would never do btw) I would banned straight away, I get banned for simply attacking Israel, which translates into anti semitism on this site.. Is it ok to ignorantly attack Muslims on this site? The answer must be yes as blatant racism against Muslims passes without so much as a word in angst, it goes unnoticed.

    Just shows how much this site has accepted the narrative of the war on terror supporting right, despite your numerous protestations.

    • Matthew Blott said,

      You seem like a bit of a thicko SteveH and I generally follow the rule not to engage with a moron (you’d never get through life if you did everytime you met one) but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt that you’re not as stupid as you sound. First, please read my response to the user who goes by the name of a badly spelled Mr Jelly – and please submit your clear evidence for racism. I made a point that support for Islamic extremism is higher than the cuddly liberal intelligentsia would have us believe – check the poll numbers if you don’t believe me …

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1510866/Poll-reveals-40pc-of-Muslims-want-sharia-law-in-UK.html

      That’s just Britain – go to the Islamic parts of the world and the support for hand chopping, stoning for adultery etc is shockingly high. As the winners of the recent elections in Egypt and Tunisia show, it’s the Islamists in different forms who are the winners. Anyway, sorry for going on about this, but this apparently makes me a racist. Well it doesn’t and I’m not.

      P.S. You keep whinging about me not being banned which seems like a pathetic attempt to get me banned – remember nobody likes a slimey little snitch.

  11. Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

    i attacked and or told blott (great name for a cunt btw), and told him to fuck off for being racist cuernt so you stenve haitch is also a liar and cretin

    • Matthew Blott said,

      Okay, we can call each other cunts and be silly but I’m not sure where it gets us (and try and learn to spell your insults correctly at least). You might have a problem with last name but I’ve always thought it pathetic and cowardly shouting abuse hiding behind an anonymous username. And I repeat to you and SteveH – apart from saying “you’re a racist cunt” what evidence do you have to support your claim? I would make an unlikely racist – I’m actually quite PC when I hear derogatory racist terms and tend to admonish those using them. It would also be news to my (black) girlfriend of seven years and indeed my mixed-race daughter. But the fact you cannot write properly suggests you cannot read properly so I suspect you didn’t understand what I said – namely Islamic extremism is higher on the intelligence services radar because it is a bigger threat than far-right terrorism. The other side point I was make was that Islamic terrorism enjoys far wider support amongst Muslims than we are lead to believe – which you could argue makes me Islamaphobic but that’s something quite different from a racist.

    • Matthew Blott said,

      Oh dear, you really are a moron – still hurling insults while hiding behind anonymity. Why don’t you tell us who you are then I can smash your face in.

  12. SteveH said,

    Jelly,

    your attack on Blott was an afterthought, you only said it after my comment. If Jews had been slandered in this way the whole Shiraz posse would have come down like a ton of bricks (and quite rightly).

    The fact that the Shiraz reaction was complete indifference says bloody everything about your shit infested politics.

    • Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

      wot are yee gannin on aboot. jessass mofuckking shitbollox

  13. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaw! said,

    @ Matthew Blott

    This is very much against my better judgement and for the nth bloody time.

    Stop whining about Muslims ‘not being a race’ because:

    1. There is no race but the human race. ‘Race’ is a pseudo-scientific category invented by scum to ‘rationalise’ and justify the exclusion, exploitation, torture and murder of other human beings.

    2. When people bang on about the ‘Islamic threat’ this is nothing but the same old anti-Asian and anti-Arab racism in new drag. The GWOT is merely the latest hook of convenience on which to hang their racist ideology.

    Going back to my remark about liberals and social democrats being the handmaidems of facism, here’s an incomplete list to be getting on with: Russian liberals sided with the Whites after the Bolshevik Revolution; the SPD green lighted the murder of Luxemburg and Liebknecht by the Freikorps in Berlin in 1919 ensuring the failure of the German revolution and paving the way for the Nazis (and also contributing to the isolation of the Bolshevik Revolution in ‘one country’ an the rise of Stalin); in Spain most liberals went over to Franco although some joined the Popular Front to white-ant the revolution from within; in Greece after WW2 liberals sided with the UKUSA occupation forces and the state security apparatus which would become the ‘Regime of the Colonels’. Today, in that London, Corporal Clogg is dancing to the tune of ‘Call me Dave’, leader of a party which is sliding inexorably towards fascism.

    Furthermore, liberals and social democrats support the capitalist mode of production – a system which piles the corpses of 30 million people every year on the Altar of the Invisible Hand. If I did that I’d (rightly) be accused of genocide, but if it’s done in the name of profit it’s ‘good business’.

    Liberals and social democrats are filth and scum. Avoiding them is a matter of good hygiene.

  14. Matthew Blott said,

    Try sobering up before you comment!

  15. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaow! said,

    Jelly and BlergHHH commentyatorr’s absurdist-surrealist textual performance art is one of the treasures of the interwebs.

  16. Monsuer Jelly est Formidable said,

    blOOTTOh is one of those fuckkers who thinks he is the first peRson evah to say what he says and that it will all be a reVellaytion to everyone else. Must be like being a perpetual 19 year owld student.

  17. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaw! said,

    The interwebs is bloody boring these days. Ruined. Taken over by people trying to 1. make money and/or 2. a name for themselves. Bollox about ‘reputation’ and other wank. Interwebs was great when it was nothing but a vast knowledge dump and websites about cats (and pr0n too if you like that sort of thing).

    Now it’s all pr0n and Dennis Potter’s cancer crying about ‘intellectual property rights’. It’s true! Mission Impossible™ = ‘intellectual property’.

  18. Faster Pussycat Miaow Miaow Miaw! said,

    blereg|GgHHH commetearyewrwer would you contact me at felinestringtheory at gmail dot com to discuss possible exchange of commodities. I have a very interesting gravel collection in which you may be interested.

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