Jo Cox: victim of ‘Leave’ hate crime.

November 23, 2016 at 8:33 pm (assassination, crime, Europe, fascism, immigration, Jim D, Migrants, murder, populism, Racism, RIP, terror, UKIP)

Nigel Farage with the poster
Above: incitement to hatred

The individual who murdered Jo Cox a week before the EU referendum shouted “Britain First” and similar slogans as he snuffed out her life. In court, when asked his name he replied “Death to Traitors.” We now know that in the bag he carried during the attack there was a leaflet about the referendum (from the ‘Remain’ side, but quite obviously not because that’s the side he supported).

Jo Cox was, of course, a well-known ‘Remain’ campaigner and had also been outspoken in demanding that the UK did more for Syrian refugees. She was murdered on the very day that Farage unveiled his notorious ‘Breaking Point’ poster.

At the time of the slaughter, it was pretty obvious that the killer was a ultra nationalist, driven into action by the extreme nativist and anti-immigrant rhetoric of the Farage/Banks wing of the Leave campaign (which the likes of Johnson and Stuart were, of course, quite happy to go along with). But the Remain side pulled our punches on this – mainly, I suspect, because it felt distasteful to seem to be making political capital out of a human tragedy. Even Shiraz Socialist was hesitant about making the link in plain language. The likes of the SWP and Morning Star, usually quick off the mark in pointing out that politicians’ racist language (eg Cameron’s use of the word “swarm”) can have practical consequences in the streets, avoided pointing the finger – for the obvious reason that they found themselves on the same side as Farage, Johnson and Stuart, however different their motives may have been

But now it can be said – indeed, must be said: although the killer is a far from being a typical ‘Leave’ voter (he is a neo- Nazi and may well be mentally ill), he was undooubtably stirred into action when he was by the ‘Leave’ campaign. In the wise words of Alex Massie (one of the few journalists to make the link at the time, though he stopped short of holding Farage personally responsible):

When you encourage rage you cannot then feign surprise when people become enraged. You cannot turn around and say, ‘Mate, you weren’t supposed to take it so seriously. It’s just a game, just a ploy, a strategy for winning votes.’

When you shout BREAKING POINT over and over again, you don’t get to be surprised when someone breaks. When you present politics as a matter of life and death, as a question of national survival, don’t be surprised if someone takes you at your word. You didn’t make them do it, no, but you didn’t do much to stop it either.

Sometimes rhetoric has consequences. If you spend days, weeks, months, years telling people they are under threat, that their country has been stolen from them, that they have been betrayed and sold down the river, that their birthright has been pilfered, that their problem is they’re too slow to realise any of this is happening, that their problem is they’re not sufficiently mad as hell, then at some point, in some place, something or someone is going to snap. And then something terrible is going to happen


  1. februarycallendar said,

    Agree entirely.

    The Leave campaign, in this instance, was guilty of incitement to murder.

  2. februarycallendar said,

    Meanwhile, those lunatics who welcome Trump for his “socialism” should read this –

    I know that David Lindsay is pro-grammar-school (which is really another way of saying – a conversation I overhead recently on a train really bore me out on this – that you don’t want anything post-1963 to be taken seriously in education) but still.

  3. Jim Denham said,

  4. februarycallendar said,

    On the front page of Music Week after Trump was “elected”: some music industry type saying it might be a good thing because He Might Do Something About Google.

    Music industry types moaning about the internet – might as well (on that front) be GW Bush who’s just cheated his way to power rather than Trump, mightn’t it?

    Says everything about how racist these people have *always* been, and still are.

  5. Andrew Coates said,

    In case you imagined the Mail could not get any lower:

    Did Neo-Nazi murder Jo over fear he’d lose council house he grew up in? Terrorist thought property could end up being occupied by an immigrant family – and the MP wouldn’t help him .

    Thomas Mair had been asked to consider leaving his three-bedroom home

    He’d lived in the council house for 40 years and was considered a recluse.

    He had been in house by himself for 20 years after his grandmother died.

    Murderer suspected foreign family were going to be given his house

  6. Robert said,

    What has NATO to do with this?
    Well, my specialised musical interests were the reason why I tuned in regularly to Stimme der DDR, the East German radio. You could count down the number of seconds between each mention of Erich Honecker (prefaced by his full presidential title) and you could also count on that broadcaster from the land of a lot of Empty to mention NATO.
    And what was this ultra-Soviet broadcaster always saying about or to NATO.
    NATO ought to be disbanded, members could only look to their conscience(s), why were these countries in the west continuing with this organisation (as if comparable with the Masons, or some faction in the Spanish Civil War) which was THE SINGLE BIGGEST THREAT TO WORLD PEACE….
    The actual nature of NATO as the incarnation of a treaty between a number of countries at odds with the USSR and its policies and satellites was obscured by all this bogey-man talk.
    Find your mendacious archetype of unthinking assumptions and repeat it, like the nasty demagogue who knows that once he can steer his blathers round to end with the deades cliche he’ll get a rousing idiot howl for saying a nothing that’s very familiar…

    IT DID THE TRICK! Oh, brilliant!
    Whores for Corsets……. or should that be HORSES FOR COURSES.

    Pantomime Politics ?
    NATO….. Siberian shivers — and see how Putanin has been reviving it as a scare-clang word — or the Brexiteers their xenophobic cant and their assumption that UK will be negotiating with MUMMY.

  7. Tribes Redux | From guestwriters said,

    […] Jo Cox: victim of ‘Leave’ hate crime. […]

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