Video shows police assault on Ian Tomlinson


7:11 pm - April 7th 2009

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Post by Guy Aitchison of Our Kingdom
A video has just been published on The Guardian website showing Ian Tomlinson (the man who died at G20 protests) being pushed and beaten from behind by a baton-wielding police officer as he tried to walk away. The police offer no assistance as he lies injured on the ground. He died shortly after.

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Reader comments


They’ve eaten their own foot this time.

2. Laurie Penny

Holy hell.

And they lied about it, too.

Oh god, this is bad.

What are you talking about? the only crime that was committed was the illegal filming of those police officers. Who knows what damage some unsavoury element or liberal newspaper could do to those brave officers.

Because of this, they’ll stop everyone with cameras going anywhere near a demonstration, isn’t the legislation already in place?

That this was predictable doesn’t make it any less tragic.

I hope (although doubt it will happen) that the officer can be identified and prosecuted from this footage, and Ian Tomlinson’s family can get some small sense of justice from that.

6. the a&e charge nurse

Now it’s been circulated at least the incriminating footage cannot disappear in mysterious circumstances.

http://leninology.blogspot.com/2005/08/purloined-footage.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOFhqfOX7Xg

Once there is a mob some police officers seem to lose the capacity to see people as individuals.

7. Luis Enrique

How awful. I didn’t expect that, I’d expected he’d been caught in an extremely stressful situation, but not beaten like that. More fool me. Let’s hope everybody raises hell over this.

8. Luis Enrique

stupidly, I wrote that before actually watching the vid. I should say pushed rather than beaten – Guy why did you write beaten?

Luis Enrique @7:

I can’t see the video yet but have read the commentary the Guardian published with it. Apparently the video shows him being batoned as well as shoved down (by two distinct officers): accompanying eye-witness reports, which (unlike the official story) have not changed since the morning after, suggest that this happened more than once and that the first time involved more blows.

There is one possible baton-ing to the leg before he is pushed (and even on the slowed down tape it’s pretty fuzzy; I’m not entirely convinced). This seems to conflict with what one of the witnesses says about him being beaten after he’d been pushed. This video shows nothing likee that. I’m not trying to downplay it, but there are discrepancies here. I still think it’s possible Tomlinson was involved in two incidents trying to cross two different police lines.

Ah. Exactly as John Q just said, in fact.

@Laurie, and not only that – a lot of authoritarian cretins on the right wing of the blogosphere believed them. I’ll remember that next time I’m tempted to be reasonable towards a swivel-eye.

I’ve made my views clear in the other threads, but let’s try to keep this thread clear of the usual pantomime left-right to and froing.

That footage is pretty damning…

15. Luis Enrique

@8. Ta.

I don’t know how to respond to this (other than the obvious sympathy for the victim etc.) – we know that the police push people and use batons in these situations (I’m not saying we ought to accept it, just that this video is not new information in that respect). We can say that this incident demonstrates the dangers of doing so. But as to the particular policemen who did this, I’m not sure we should treat them any differently to all the other policemen who push and use batons needlessly, because in this instance it led to somebody dying. Somebody who fires a bullet at random into a crowd ought to be treated in the same way, regardless of whether they happen to kill anybody or not (I know this is not how things work in practice). Any time a policemen pushes somebody or uses their baton, they risk killing somebody. Of course policemen should not be pushing or using batons at all, unless they have good reason, which they did not in this case, but pushing and using batons without good reason is a (shamefully) common occurrence. I’m not sure the right thing to do here is to call for the individual policemen in question to be strung up; some people should perhaps be strung up for the cover-up, assuming it was done knowingly. Perhaps the cover up is the real story.

Or perhaps the individual policemen in question were so out of line, that the right response is to prosecute them for manslaughter. I don’t know. As I said, I’m not sure what to think. But if we do that, ought we not prosecute every policeman that wades in without good reason. Hundreds of policemen hit hundreds of protesters for no good reason that day.

16. Akheloios

This is a rallying call not only against Police violence but also the fact that it is becoming more and more apparent that you can’t trust a single thing that the Police or any security service say any more.

If we can’t trust the Police to tell us the truth, then we can’t legislate on the basis of that advice, and actual crime prevention becomes impossible.

The video shows pretty clearly that the Police used unnecessary violence against a man who not only had his back to them, but his hands in his pockets and physically unable to commit violence against the Police at that point. The Police then lied about this series of events, claiming that the crowd disrupted attempts to aid the man, where the video clearly shows the only people willing to help him were the protesters.

The ban on photography needs to end as it’s just this kind of abuse being recorded that the Police and Government seek to stop.

And this is clearly why they were taking cameras off people and deleting their contents…

Life on Mars Gene Hunt would be proud. I think Ashes to Ashes Gene would have more sense.

I have collected eyewitness accounts of poor Ian Tomlinson’s death on the Mabinogogiblog.
http://greenerblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/ian-tomlinson-what-happened.html

Eyewitness accounts are known to be extremely variable, even under laboratory conditions, In a crowded demonstration, when the witness is also under threat, it becomes even more variable. The key thing is that the Coroner of the City of London (02073321598) (be polite yet firm) must call an Inquest. He is due to announce his decision on this next Thurdsday.

We got the video via youtube on PP:

http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/4102

Luis Enrique… +1

Demos are very aggro situations, and the cops are every bit as susceptible to a mob mentality as the protestors are, no matter how much training they have. You can vet police applicants as much as you like, but it’s difficult to pluck out all the ones who would lose control in such occasions. I’m certain the majority of coppers would prefer a day off to ruckus with protestors – I certainly would.

I think the kettling tactic is wrong, and that copper certainly shouldn’t have smashed Tomlinson the way he did, or any other innocent bystander for that matter. The police have a responsibility to stay calm and controlled, even if the situation isn’t, and I hope those in charge of operations scrutinise the behaviour of the officers on the ground closely. Not that I’m holding out much hope they’ll reconsider, of course.

Obvious, patronising point alert

Tempting as it might be, the OMFG teh Polis r MURDERZ stuff people might instantly feel is plain daft. If they’d beaten him goodstyle with nightsticks, I’d see the point.

It’s been the lead on Sky this evening – and deservedly so – about to see how the beloved BBC covers it shortly.

Disgraceful behaviour.

You can vet police applicants as much as you like, but it’s difficult to pluck out all the ones who would lose control in such occasions.

Vet? TSG officers are chosen specifically because they are more physical in character. If you’re the police and holding a line in riot gear the last thing you want is a weak link in the chain.

TSG officers are chosen specifically because they are more physical in character.

Maybes aye, maybes naw. They might run things differently down south than they do up here in the frozen north.

I’m assuming we can expect a front-page retraction in tomorrow’s Evening Standard, too, yes?

… but, no, a quick look at their shitty website reveals yet another scare-story of police being “overwhelmed”, this time by a few hundred Tamil protestors. Except if you read past the ludicrous headline, you find they aren’t being “overwhelmed” at all. Frankly, the sooner that particular “newspaper” goes bust, the better.

Re #20, I agree. The people I’d especially like to see hung out to dry on this are:

1. The thugs in the higher echelons of the police who were ramping up the aggro in the media in the days running up to the protests. The people who *designed* those tactics, not the poor sods sent in to carry out the orders. One of them lashing out when he shouldn’t, as appears to have happened, is just the logical consequence of the buildup.

2. Whoever it is at Met HQ that has access to the right media people to put out false cover stories (flying bricks, leaping Brazilians and the like). Once they’re out, they’re off around the world, never to be properly corrected. They have form on this, and yet the major outlets run, almost unquestioning, with their version *every time*.

Alix: “There is one possible baton-ing to the leg before he is pushed (and even on the slowed down tape it’s pretty fuzzy; I’m not entirely convinced). This seems to conflict with what one of the witnesses says about him being beaten after he’d been pushed.”

Sorry, I don’t understand this point. How does the Guardian video preclude the eye witness testimony of him being beaten after he was pushed from also being true?

It’s the lies that make me fume.

Without those, this would be a case of bad police tactics (kettling) combined with definite, but relatively mild, police brutality, which ended up with a fatality through everyone’s bad luck.

But then the cover up, and the totally contemptible attempt to pin the blame on brick-flinging protesters, all with the complicity of the press… it’s just the pits.

It’s the lies that make me fume.

It’s just Chinatown, Teabag, innit?

The cops are PR, just like everyone else. Doesn’t matter whether they’re picking you up for littering or shooting you through the shoulder, it’s get your story out first and sweat the details later.

“Or perhaps the individual policemen in question were so out of line, that the right response is to prosecute them for manslaughter.”

That lets the whole organisation off though. I wouldn’t be calling for this individual to get any punishment, the higher ups knowingly encouraged this behaviour throughout this and other protests.

And, as Larry says, it’s the fact that we’ve got to the stage of America in the stakes of bare faced lies when they do something truly terrible.

@25, damn straight, Guy. We’ve only just seen this video – which tells one aspect of what happened. Who knows if there is other footage of him being beaten? Just cos we’re not seeing it here, doesn’t mean there isn’t other footage. I’m amazed they didn’t try to block this from being released, or perhaps they did.

Some people (i.e. Alix) seem awfully cautious about wanting to implicate the police in this – fair enough if that is your ideological position, but ffs, the evidence is right in front of us! He did nothing and they let him have it. How about everyone else?

30. Shatterface

This government made somebody’s death inevitable when they made legal, peaceful protest impossible.

They’re as guilty for this as they are for every violent act commited by our soldiers in Iraq.

Get the fuckers out.

No more chances.

But then the cover up, and the totally contemptible attempt to pin the blame on brick-flinging protesters, all with the complicity of the press… it’s just the pits.

On CiF there’s an article on the press response:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/libertycentral/2009/apr/07/civil-liberties-g20-police-assault-ian-tomlinson?commentpage=4&commentposted=1

Below the article, in the comments, Stephen Moss, who is Guardian staff, says:

When the Guardian offered this astonishing footage to the BBC News at 6, apparently the response was “No thanks, we’re not covering this, we see it as just a London story.” Great news sense down there at TV Centre.

Lee – “That lets the whole organisation off though. I wouldn’t be calling for this individual to get any punishment, the higher ups knowingly encouraged this behaviour throughout this and other protests.”

Absolutely right.

JB86UK – Thanks for the link. Great work by Paul Lewis of the Guardian. In fact great work by the whole guardian since the protests began. Most of the media have behaved pretty despicably in my view.

Of course there has to be an Inquest, and it is a tragedy.

Duncan Campbell’s report is excellent, and there needs to be a proper holding to account based on a Judicial Investigation.

For policing culture in general, and the laws / structures / policies / regulation that have created it, we should be in Royal Commission territory.

My take on where this will – I hope – have an impact.

1 – This should bury Section 76 (photographing police to be an offence), as it shows that *all* photographic evidence is essential.

2 – A big concern is the shallowness of the “chattering classes” conversation. Coverage on e.g., Newsnight Review focussed on the “this is not a real protest, it is trustafarians who want to make trouble” type of nonsense. They completely missed the policing questions.

3 – There is a really series discontinuity between Ministerial declarations, ACPO advice, force policy, and what actually happens. See my piece:
http://www.mattwardman.com/blog/2009/04/02/photographs-of-policemen-section-76-and-the-g20-demos-ministers-have-their-heads-in-the-clouds/
That is a possible line to force change, and a lot of people have missed this angle – esp the Commons Debate that same day.

4 – Major existing questions over the “hard policing” culture (I’m wondering about starting to call it “paramilitary”) are emphasised. This ties in with all the “terrorism” stuff / photog harrassment (both amateurs and at demos e.g. Mark Vallee and the policing of the Kent demo ). Also the way Cautions have become more serious and all the other issues that we are all working on parts of.

5 – Wrong policing tactics at demos are being used in the wrong place and wrong time (e.g., kettling the Climate Camp). Serious questions. Reform needed.

6 – I’m not willing to do a blanket condemnation of the police from top to bottom. There is a *major* problem, yes – but the main target needs to be the culture and policies. Individual officers don’t have an option.

7 – I think there are three sets of views that concern me. Firstly the hair-trigger anti-demonstrator reactions. As Alix says – loons. Second, the few who did go along to be violent; more loons. Third, the commenterati (see 2) who’s level of discussion has been better suited to asides on the News Quiz.

I think that bloggers – and especially Lib Con since so many associated were there – can do a lot of good work in making sure that all the reports (esp Twitter) are put into a coherent timeline and put to the enquiry.

>6 – I’m not willing to do a blanket condemnation of the police from top to bottom. There is a *major* problem, yes – but the main target needs to be the culture and policies. Individual officers don’t have an option.

Clarification. I don’t mean that the officer who pushed him didn’t have an option, of course. I mean that if individual officers don’t buy into the culture developed over the last few years, it comes down ultimately to “conform or leave”, as enforced e.g., by performance targets.

@26, @30 Slow down, guys – did you read to the end of my post?? I said it was possible Tomlinson had been involved in two separate incidents. That would have to be the case, because this video clearly shows Tomlinson getting up and walking off without being beaten. These are just facts.

“Some people (i.e. Alix) seem awfully cautious about wanting to implicate the police in this – fair enough if that is your ideological position,”

I actually find that insulting. If you’d read what I’d written properly, or made the slightest effort to find out what my ideological position was (I’m a liberal) you wouldn’t have come to such a ridiculous conclusion. I was putting together pieces from this incident, raiding Twitter, blogs, official aaccounts and status updates, three hours after it happened. That led me to believe the police were talking bollocks, so I carried on collecting snippets, logically and critically. I’m not going to stop being logical and critical when a new snippet doesn’t chime with existing snippets just because it happens to support my existing view. That way madness lies.

How ineteresting that the BBC turned it down.

Sky – yes, Murdoch’s evil outlet – made it the lead very quickly.

Of course the BBC then had to folllow…

37. constableconfused.com

Will probably be slated here. First of all I wasn’t there so don’t know. The time of the video does undoubtedly show the gent being pushed to the ground. It is horrible he subsequently died.

I would like to know what happened before this video as well as what happened afterwards. Personally speaking if I had a police dog snapping at my heels along with a number of uniformed officers following me I wouldn’t be ambling along with my hands in my pocket. I would move.

As I said before I wasn’t there at the time and neither where other people who have commented. If there is wrongdoing on the side of the officer he WILL be identified and dealt with. The IPCC is just that and does not employ anyone who has previous interests with the police, that is why they are independent.

It looks bad, may be bad but let’s see what really happened first.

Regards.

I await your criticism.

You are welcome, Constable confused, because Britain, to remain a free country, needs police officers who want to get to the truth. You say ” Personally speaking if I had a police dog snapping at my heels along with a number of uniformed officers following me I wouldn’t be ambling along with my hands in my pocket. I would move”.

As a demonstrator, (who was at the peaceful demonstration in Trafalgar Square, which has been rewarded with zero coverage) I would have moved, as you say. I would have been in the mood of the moment. But Ian was not a demonstrator, he was a Millwall supporter and worker trying to get home from work, and It is reasonable to imagine that he would have been fairly forthright and assertive about his right to walk the pavements of London.

The blame should not stop with the officer who attacked Ian. It should go up to whoever it was that ordered kettling, and who wound up the police with phrases like “we are up for it”.

Remember that this violent attack by police was not isolated. At the Climate Camp, officers waded in striking out at peaceful demonstrators with their arms in the air chanting “Peace not Violence”.

This incident, if it is to have any positive meaning at all, must lead to a radical review of the police service as a whole, of police tactics in general, of the anti-terror legislation, and of the way in which Govenment responds, or does not respond, to the views and opinions of the people, who are the ultimate source of power in a democracy.

“Personally speaking if I had a police dog snapping at my heels along with a number of uniformed officers following me I wouldn’t be ambling along with my hands in my pocket. I would move.”

If I was a police officer following someone that was clearly not a part of any trouble I’d have walked around them and let them be and moved towards those that actually were actively threatening to breach the peace with violence and destruction. Perhaps this shows the difference of perspective we all have.

Its obvious that the attack on a vulnerable alcoholic was wrong and that the officer involved should be punished and prosecuted for assault. That’s beyond debate. However, it stinks that the poor man’s death has now been hijacked by the vocal left to further their agenda, i.e. to allow them carte-blanche freedom to protest and disrupt ordinary working people’s lives at great cost to the taxpayer. Have you seen the mess left after these protests? The militant Left have no popular mandate in the UK that is why you prefer direct action to the ballot box.

The City protest footage shows missiles thrown at Police, burglary, vandalism and drunkenness. Just what are doing to stop the significant minority from causing problems at your protests?

Personally, I’d ban any white person with dreadlocks or a middle-class accent. Would there be anyone left?

constableconfused – should we also investigate the story that was put out at the time, before the video emerged?

42. douglas clark

There was a – sort of – joke going the rounds when the legislation was introduced to restrict photography. It was to the effect that the Americans had the right to bear arms and we didn’t have the right to bear cameras.

It wasn’t very funny then and it is less so now.

“i.e. to allow them carte-blanche freedom to protest and disrupt ordinary working people’s lives at great cost to the taxpayer. Have you seen the mess left after these protests?”

Creates jobs as well then does it? Interesting!

You’ll find most of us are unsympathetic to protestors that decide to take direct action and get in confrontations with police. However there is enough video footage of G20 protesters being charged while sitting down, of innocent people being attacked (Tomlinson) and being detained, inhumanely, for hours on end. For as much as I also hate “Lefties” that hijack this death as a reason to have completely unrestricted protests, I also hate “Righties” and those like you that don’t seize the opportunity to make a great push for reform in how our police are allowed to act when we operate our democratic and human rights.

It just stinks of the same kind of tribal hypocrisy that I had to endure from lefties when they chose to abandon highly public 42 day campaigns because of David Davis’ involvement.

The amusing part, is of course, the irony and the hypocrisy of people like you chavscum that will ignore perfectly comparable human actions, if we’re breaking it down to a cost scale (either against people, economically, or environmentally…whatever) as long as you agree with people doing them.

Chavscum: fuck off, you racist, bigoted tosser.

Constable Confused, why is it the IPCC never, er, you know, actually validate any complaints against the police? Why is it over 1,000 people were killed in police custody between 1979 and now, with not a single cop held to account? Watch Injustice, http://www.injusticefilm.co.uk, and you might question whether or not you are proud to put on that uniform.

There is a protest of some sort in London every fucking week. Aggressive policing of protests is rare and its no coincidence that its happened against anti-capitalists, who contain a minority out to inflict violence on people and property. It looks like they’ve been over the top and their superiors, led by the Media have seriously over-egged the support of this protest, in that the only a few thousand students and home counties drop outs could be arsed. If the protest was in Trafalgar Sq or Hyde Park or at the w/e I’d be more sympathetic to your squealing. However, it was a march on the City on a working day, the intention was to disrupt for maximum attention. So, that’s why the Police have some legitimacy in aggressively tackling the protest.

The death of the poor fella is separate issue, relating to the behaviour of individual policeman and should be eradicated from the force. It’s a problem they need to deal with. As is the issue of speeding pandas that have killed far too many innocent people. There’s no discussion on this is there?

Stop playing the fucking victim and get down the Student bar to drown your sorrows.

Chavscum. Hey Chav, isn’t it time you got down to your Newsagents and bought your Daily Mail?

What is this obsession with students and student bars? You sound like someone with a chip on his shoulder because you got turned down for college. Think about Chav. With your prejudices, bigotry and racism – and love of our fuckwit Royal Family – they might just have made the right decision. And if you had scraped in your chance of a degree would have been close to zero. Grow up.

How do you know aggressive policing of protests is rare – I’m not convinced you’ve been on that many.

I can testify that it isn’t rare. I’ve been on protests where the number of people from the FIT team is greater than the number of protesters(!) and they’ve still seen the need to police them agressively (surely they should be able to control things peacefully with those kinds of numbers).

And the sad death of Ian Tomlinson is clearly not a separate issue – even the police are not claiming it is. Investigations are currently underway to determine how the overall policing instructions contributed to the death. I’d suggest they contributed at the very least by creating an atmosphere of confrontation, causing cops and protesters to dehumanise each other.

@ Chav

There is a protest of some sort in London every fucking week

Last time I looked, London was the capital of the UK – as the capital it is the seat of government, where else are people supposed to protest – Upper Hopton?

Chavscum @42:

Its obvious that the attack on a vulnerable alcoholic

… why do you keep harping on about the idea that the man might have had a drink? It’s almost as if you believe that had he smelt a bit of alcohol that would justify the police officer’s actions… the only reason I say ‘almost’ is that you also claim to think the assaulting officer should be disciplined.

And @48:

There is a protest of some sort in London every fucking week. Aggressive policing of protests is rare

Hmm. Do you live in London? I do. Do you know many political activists? I do. And your mileage seems to vary massively from mine and from theirs.

In my experience, and the experience of every protester I know, aggressive policing is typical at any protest they think they can get away with it at. I’ve seen lines of mounted cops charging into peaceful marches, I’ve seen people’s cameras being smashed while they had them up to their eye, thus necessitating major surgery to save their sight. The assaulting officer wore no number and there were no news outlets filming that protest, because it was a local Oxford one. You, sir, really don’t know what you’re talking about.

TimF @50:

I’ve been on protests where the number of people from the FIT team is greater than the number of protesters

I saw one of those in 2007 at Piccadilly; I counted. 27 protesters had showed up to shout about the minimum wage. 47 police officers were present, including four members of SO19. I thought that was slightly excessive.

51. Patrick John

The Guardian had no right in publishing pictues of something that did not happen.

“With your prejudices, bigotry and racism – and love of our fuckwit Royal Family – they might just have made the right decision. And if you had scraped in your chance of a degree would have been close to zero”

Find me a post with evidence of bigotry and racism and I’ll bin my Queen Mum mug. Prejudice? Sure, I have rational hatred of the middle-class Left. Have you noticed? The Royals? I have no interest in them, but its amusing to tease the fanatical republicans!

“where else are people supposed to protest”

Like the rest of us, who have responsibilities, like work,families and hobbies; write letters and via the ballot box.

“… why do you keep harping on about the idea that the man might have had a drink? It’s almost as if you believe that had he smelt a bit of alcohol that would justify the police officer’s actions… the only reason I say ‘almost’ is that you also claim to think the assaulting officer should be disciplined.”

He was an alcoholic, which makes him more vulnerable than a student protester and partly explains how he inadvertantly came to be in their way. The Police should have used their nouse to see he was a harmless person and that’s why his attacker should be severely punished. If he had been a leftie agitator, deliberately winding up the Police, then I would be less sympathetic; just as you would had he been a football fan.

“Do you live in London?” Yes

“In my experience, and the experience of every protester I know, aggressive policing is typical at any protest they think they can get away with it at. I’ve seen lines of mounted cops charging into peaceful marches, I’ve seen people’s cameras being smashed while they had them up to their eye, thus necessitating major surgery to save their sight. The assaulting officer wore no number and there were no news outlets filming that protest, because it was a local Oxford one. You, sir, really don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Be honest. You are exaggerating. I’ve no doubt the odd protest suffers from bad Police behaviour, but they weren’t pensioners marching for better care for the elderly, were they?

I have rational hatred of the middle-class Left.

Ha…

Cheap cleaners, someone to wash your car for a fiver, someone to drive you home after you’ve been to the latest ethnic restaurant in town, someone to serve you your cappuccino, the cheap plumber and builder to provide that architect designed extension and the 15yr old who’ll give you a nice massage on a Friday night. Plus, your uncle, the provincial farmer, who can use cheap migrants to work 60hrs/wk at £5/hr instead of paying decent wages to the locals who are left to rot on benefits or invest in new machinery.

Ha…

Not sure which embarrasses the Left most, being almost always white, middle-class or their hypocritical attitude to multiculturalism. Yeah, you may give your kids some life experience at the local nursery, but it’s a racing certainty you won’t be sending them to the local ethnic dominated community school. You’ll be hop footing it to the home counties, the countryside or buying into one of the white middle-class metropolitan oasis. I completely agree with putting your kids’ future first, but when you are preaching mass immigration and multiculturalism, you reek of hypocrisy. I might sound self-righteous, but that’s because I’m right.

And? Pretty much spot on descriptions.

And? Pretty much spot on descriptions.

Well, no, because you don’t know us, and thus draw conclusions from your own tiresome cascade of cliches. None of us, I think it’s fair to predict, live or behave in the manner that you detail. To take myself as an example (to my intense regret, I know myself better than I know anyone else on this thread):

Right, so I don’t have a cleaner, don’t have a car, can’t drink cappuccinos without hurling, have never bought a massage, don’t have children and go to an urban, multi-ethnic school….Apart from that, I’m startled by your accuracy; it’s bloody uncanny.

The problem is, Chavscum, that you don’t merely try your hand at pseudo-psychonalysis, you generalise your extrapolations to an entire bundle of philosophies, and start raining damnation over hordes of sickeningly liberal strawmen. It’d be better to just, y’know, tackle arguments n’ shit (maybe throwing in the odd ad hominem if it’s particularly funny).

Ben


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