By John Ruberry

Most of the main characters in Hell on Wheels, my last Netflix binge-watching adventure, were shaped, and scarred, by the American Civil War.

In this BBC 2 television show, Peaky Blinders, set in Birmingham, England beginning in 1919, World War I casts its shadow over the lead characters.

Three seasons have been released so far. The action–and the violence–is centered upon the Anglo-Gypsy Shelby family, led by Thomas “Tommy” Shelby (Cillian Murphy), a decorated Great War tunneller who returns home a new man–and a better suited one to run the family business, Shelby Brothers, Ltd, a bookmaking operation set in the grimy and noisy Small Heath section of Birmingham. But the gang is generally called the Peaky Blinders by members and their enemies. His oldest brother, Arthur (Paul Anderson) is clearly more psychologically damaged from the war than Tommy, but he’s better suited to serve as the enforcer for the family. “I think, Arthur. That’s what I do,” Tommy explains to him. “I think. So that you don’t have to.” Third son John (Joe Cole), another World War I veteran, is also employed in the muscle side of the operation, while Finn, the youngest Shelby, is only 11-years-old when the series begins.

Tommy has a sister, Ada Thorne (Sophie Rundle), who is married to communist agitator. But she’s still loyal to the family.

While the Shelby men were fighting in France–the family business was run by Elizabeth “Aunt Polly” Gray (Helen McCrory), a kind of a Rosie the Riveter of the underworld. Tommy quickly takes over from Polly, who serves as his senior advisor. Like Edward G. Robinson’s legendary Rico character in Little Caesar, Tommy becomes a small-time-hood-makes-good-by-being-bad by playing one gang faction against the other, first in Birmingham then in London, while largely ignoring Aunt Polly’s warnings.

When the Peaky Blinders stumble upon a large machine gun shipment in an otherwise routine heist, that gets the attention of Secretary of State for War Winston Churchill (Andy Nyman in the first season, Richard McCabe in the second), who dispatches Inspector Chester Campbell (Sam Neill) from Belfast to find the machine guns. Those guns give Tommy power and respect–and enemies. Not only do Churchill and Campbell want those weapons, but so does the Irish Republican Army.

Campbell sends in an Irish domestic spy, Grace Burgess (Annabelle Wallis), to work at the neighborhood pub owned by Arthur, appropriately named The Garrison. She quickly becomes its de facto manager.

In season three, which is set in 1924, Tommy, at Churchill’s request, gets involved in another armaments caper, this time with members of the Whites faction who haven’t ascertained that the Communists have won the Russian Civil War. Arthur warns Tommy to stay out of “this Russian business.” It’s too bad the script writers didn’t take their own creation’s advice. As was the case with season four of Sherlock, what follows is a collection of tangled and confusing plot lines. Possibly realizing their mistake, the writers include quite a bit of gratuitous nudity to accompany the Russian adventure, including a bizarre orgy scene which does nothing to advance the storyline.

On the other hand, the Russian diversion is loosely based on a 1924 scandal that brought down Great Britain’s first socialist-led government.

At least two more seasons are coming.

The cinematography of Peaky Blinders is masterful. Imagine Tim Burton creating a remake of The Untouchables television show and setting it in 1920s Birmingham. And this is an ugly Birmingham. J.R.R Tolkien lived in the city before the Great War and his reaction against it was his creation of Mordor for The Lord of the Rings. Just as the Eye of Sauron looked upon that evil realm–the sparks and the ashes of the foundries oversee the Midlands metropolis here. And the industrial roar is always there too.

Blogger in his flat cap

Without getting into spoilers it’s a challenge to bring a description of Jewish gangster Alfie Solomons into this review, but his portrayal by Tom Hardy is too good to overlook.

Oh, the name. Peaky Blinders? There was a Birmingham gang by the same name who gained that moniker because its members supposedly sewed razor blades into the peaks of their flat caps. And in fights the hoodlums went for the eyes.

And finally, the music deserves special mention too. Anachronistic goth rock dominates, the unofficial theme song is Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ “Red Right Hand.” You’ll find selections from PJ Harvey, Tom Waits, and the White Stripes too.

And Johnny Cash sings “Danny Boy.”

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

USA-UK flagsBy John Ruberry

Colonel Ahmed: “Not the President of America, sir. The President of Earth.” Doctor Who, Death in Heaven.

Not content with “fundamentally transforming” America, Barack Obama is in Europe right now causing mischief. During a joint press conference with German Prime Minister Angela Merkel that concluded a few hours ago Obama praised her open borders policy on Syrian migrants, declaring that she “is on the right side of history on this.”

Meanwhile, fueled largely by opposition to increased immigration from the Middle East, far-right political parties are gaining strength in Europe.

While Obama was in Great Britain last week the conservative-leaning Telegraph published his op-ed where he urged the UK to reject isolationism and vote “No” on June’s referendum, dubbed “Brexit,” which will decide if Britain will remain in the European Union. Later he threatened Britons by placing their nation “at the back of the queue” in regards to any trade deals with the United States.

Michigan state police car
Why does Michigan need a state police force?

Obama is an internationalist rather than a standard American politician. He favors a much stronger United Nations, and while a senator he sponsored a bill that would impose a tax on Americans to fight poverty in other countries. Obama’s view of sovereign nations is likely that they should be administrative units along the lines of counties in US states. Not that Obama cares much for local units of American government. His administration has initiated a creeping federalization of local police departments. All of this assists in explaining Obama’s hostility to Brexit.

Look for Obama to push internationalization of governments after he leaves the White House. Of course if that push succeeds the UN will need a proper leader, not a glorified clerk like the general secretary position.

I’m sure Obama has someone in mind. Someone with a Kenyan father and a Kansas mother who grew up in multi-racial Hawaii would be perfect, he likely believes.

Obama has always viewed himself as larger than the American presidency.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

Thug:  You’re Mr. Sherlock Holmes ain’t ya

Sherlock Holmes:  Yes.

Thug:  I wouldn’t come down here if I was you.  This is Limehouse and we don’t fancy you’re sort of bloke in these parts.

Dr. Watson:  the fellow’s absolutely right shouldn’t we…

Sherlock Holmes:  Quiet Watson,This is still a free country a man may walk where he pleases.

Sherlock Holmes and the Voice of Terror 1942

It’s a good thing that The Few Sacrificed so much to prevent the Nazi’s from conquering England and installing a government that would punish men for saying what they think.  Perhaps they shouldn’t have bothered.

Police have arrested a 40-year old man in Scotland over a number of allegedly “offensive” Facebook posts about refugees.

Police in Scotland said that a man had been held under the Communications Act, which bans “grossly offensive” and “menacing” posts on online platforms.

Ahhh those quaint old days when England believed in personal freedoms.  Pam Geller is right, the nation that gave us Magna Carta is dead.  Perhaps we should strike the “Great” from Great Britain

That this happened in Scotland is even more interesting,  Can you picture a Scotsman being arrested for speaking his mind?  I’m sure Edward Longshanks would have approved.  No wonder so many Scots came to America.

This is coming to America, have no doubt about it and don’t doubt for a second that there are people on the Supreme Court right now who would go along with it.

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The latest in our series of posts that will not surprise any person who has been paying attention.

Today’s installment comes a post from Robert Spencer’s Jihad’s Watch on a case in England from this story in the Indian Express

An Indian-origin Islamist activist facing trial on terrorism charges skipped bail and fled the country with his family on Wednesday, headed through Paris to the Islamic State, British media have reported. The escape, first revealed by The Daily Mail, came after Abu Rumaysah failed to surrender his passport, a condition of his bail, and has led to opposition charges of police incompetence.

Seriously, they didn’t get the passport first before they let him out on bail?  Well it must be because he wasn’t charged with anything series lie inciting terrorist, oh wait….

Born Siddhartha Dhar, to a family Indian diplomatic sources in London told The Indian Express was of Bihar-Bengal origin, Abu Rumaysah had been arrested in September along with nine others, on charges of inciting terrorism, as part of an ongoing investigation of the London-based pro-jihadist group al-Muhajiroun.

Well nobody finds this more unexpected that Robert Spencer who writes…

He was forbidden to leave the country; Britain wants to keep its jihadis. But he eluded authorities, which is no doubt very easy to do in Clueless Britannia, and fled to the Islamic State. But not to worry, Abu Rumaysah, if you have “good intentions,” you can come back whenever you wish and be showered with goods by the Ministry of Appeasement.

The real question what is the source of this story’s place in the “Unexpectedly Chronicles”, that a supporter of Jihad in the west flouts law or that a bureaucracy is this inefficient?

FYI have you seen Robert Spencer’s latest book?

Or perhaps some of his other ones?

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Gandhi: Mr. Kinnoch, I beg you to accept that there is no people on Earth who would not prefer their own bad government to the good government of an alien power.

Gandhi 1982

12th Doctor: It’s good I’m Scottish. I’m Scottish. I am Scottish. I can complain about things, I can really complain about things.

Doctor Who Deep Breath 2014

I’ve written nothing about Scottish independence to this point and other than security I don’t really care one way or the other.   As far as I’m concerned as long as the Scots don’t ally themselves with our enemies or suddenly decide to invade England or send the Black Watch to fight on the side of ISIS  it doesn’t matter to me one jot if the Cross of St. Andrew or the Union Jack flies over Edinburgh Castle.   The Scots are a first world country, highly educated, schooled in democracy and if they want to govern themselves I see no reason why they shouldn’t have a go at it

There is however one suggestion that I would make to our Scottish friends.  I’d ask for a clause in any separation deal that calls for a 2nd referendum in 40 years on reunification with England.

Because right now the left and the greens are likely going to be running your new country for a while and given their proclivities, your primary assets of Oil & Whiskey  are most certainly going to be used to create a socialist welfare state which will become a magnet for those seeking relief.  It will be the ultimate test of the wisdom of the Socialist / Green agenda for the entire world to see.

Meanwhile on the other side of Hadrian’s wall we will see the exact opposite.  Without their kilted collection of votes England will most certainly move farther to the right on all kinds of issues.  With luck you might even see some of the excesses of  the welfare state rolled back.

I think it would be a grand experiment on both sides of the border and the results will say plenty.

Now I suspect the Scots, being a sensible if quarrelsome people will only need a few election cycles to figure out that however nice socialism is when paid for in English pounds, if it’s paid for in Scottish pounds I’ll wager it will be a different story and I doubt the far left would be able to repress them a/la Venezuela if they choose to say enough!

It it turns out however I’m wrong, if the Scots don’t figure it out or are too stubborn to let it go they might want to have that 2nd referendum available so they can decide to rejoined the British fold as one United Kingdom.

The real question at that time is this:  Would an England freed of a large block of the Socialist labor vote choose to have them back?

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Yesterday Glenn Reynolds linked to a story at the Daily Mail that should make you sick.

How fear of being seen as racist stopped social workers saving up to 1,400 children from sexual exploitation at the hands of Asian men in just ONE TOWN

The Details as as bad as the headline suggests

In August 2013, four women launched legal action against Rotherham council over ‘systematic failures’ to protect them from ‘sexual abuse by predatory men when they were children’ according to their lawyers.
One girl, known only as ‘Jessica’ claims she was abused daily as a 14-year-old by a 24-year-old man after social services failed to accept that she was a victim grooming.
On one ocassion married father-of-two Arshid Hussain was even caught with the half naked schoolgirl under his bed but documents revealed that police arrested her – and let him go.
Rotherham, South Yorkshire, has become known as Britain’s under-age sex capital, after a string of high profile cased where authorities have let down vulnerable children.

Before I go any farther when you see the word “Asian” in an English Newspaper it doesn’t mean Oriental, it generally means Pakistani Muslim or Arabic (Remember Asia is a pretty big place)

Even worse was the reaction when some fathers tried to save their children from this horror:

In two cases, fathers had tracked down their daughters and tried to remove them from houses where they were being abused – only to be arrested themselves when police were called to the scene

It’s as I said a horrific story and Stacy McCain notes that it’s not the first of its nature in terms of the act or the perps

A SCHOOLGIRL, who was in the care of the city council when she fell victim to a gang of Derby perverts, had been groomed and sexually abused by another man only months earlier, the Telegraph can reveal.
The youngster was placed in a children’s home by Derby City Council for her own protection after police arrested Ansar Hussain, who targeted her when she was just 13.
But despite being under the supervision of social workers, she fell into the clutches of evil Abid Mohammed Saddique and Mohammed Romaan Liaqat – the ringleaders of a gang who raped and abused 27 girls.

I wonder if the got away with it so long because police were worried about looking racist there too?

What do you call a police force that is unwilling to enforce the laws on particular group of men based on their race even if it endangers the children of their community and why does that question seem particularly relevant in our current news cycle?

Final thought in the sub headline of the base story at the Daily Mail was a throw away line that speaks volumes

Victims terrorised with guns and doused in petrol and threatened with fire

Threatened with Guns? I thought England had some of the toughest guns laws in the world and had largely disarmed their citizens?  Or was the disarming of the populace race based too?

Perhaps that’s why the police didn’t want to arrest these guys, maybe they were afraid of getting shot.

Update: Donald Douglas excoriates the Telegraph for their coverage

Look, the Telegraph UK won’t even call these guys Muslims, even though they’re from Pakistan and all have Arabic-Islamist names.

See, “Rotherham sex abuse scandal: 1,400 children exploited by Asian gangs while authorities turned a blind eye.” Also “Video: Police ‘sorry’ for failure in Rotherham child sex abuse scandal.”

and includes a tweet from Iowahawk on the common denominator that dare not be spoken

Meanwhile Stacy McCain taking a different tack and talks of the welfare culture

Everything you might say about “inner city” culture in America can be applied to the lower-class whites in Great Britain who have been morally corrupted by their cradle-to-grave welfare system. Unwed motherhood, educational failure, drug addiction, violent thuggery — white people are entirely capable of these things, once they succumb to the self-pitying slothful dependency of welfare culture.

Our provincialism prevents Americans from recognizing what this means in terms of our own welfare policies, simply because no American can criticize welfare without being suspected of racism. Political correctness creates this helpless confusion, a confusion that is every bit as dangerous as the attitudes which prevented authorities in Rotherham from doing something about the dreadful exploitation of lower-class white girls — mere girls, some of them as young as 11 or 12 — by rape gangs of young Muslim men. Of course, American feminists who hector us about “rape culture” on college campuses won’t say a word about this story.

I surprised none of them noticed the gun angle.

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“…if there is one thing I’ve learned in politics, it’s never turn your back on a crumb.”

Hubert Humphrey 1957

Robert Spencer tells of an interesting story out of England:

Britain plans to classify “Islamist extremism” as a distinct ideology, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Tuesday, as part the government’s response to the murder of a soldier on a busy London street.

Cameron said he would implement recommendations he had received from a task force he set up after the murder of Lee Rigby in May, to try to stop people being radicalised by “hate preachers”.

Mr. Spencer is bemused:

They’re emphasizing that it has nothing to do with genuine Islam. How they will explain why “Islamist extremists” move freely among authentic Muslims without being rebuked, repudiated, rejected or reported remains to be seen. And how far they will get in tackling this ideology while maintaining the falsehood that there is no justification in Islam for it is unclear. It would be more truthful for them to be honest about its Islamic derivation and challenge the Muslim community in the UK to reform and to work with law enforcement, but truth is at a premium in the UK these days.

Very good point, Pam Geller has a hilarious picture that fits this comment to a T:

Well this one takes serious intellectual twisting …… will the British authorities ban the quranic texts that call for jihad?

And Stacy McCain has a few things to say as well:

It seems there are an awful lot of Muslims who share this ”Islamist extremism” hatred of the West. Perhaps I’m the only one who remembers watching TV news coverage on Sept. 11, 2001, when crowds of Muslims were dancing in the streets of Cairo and Gaza in celebration of the terrorist attacks masterminded by al-Qaeda.

All of these interpretations are valid but there is a bright side, a crumb if you will, that everyone seems to be missing that we should be very pleased about.

With the classification of “Islamic extremism” as an unacceptable ideology in England the question quickly becomes, “How do we define it?” What are the beliefs that constitute “Islamic extremism?”

Is it committing attacks on people in the name of Islam Islamic extremism?

Is  it calling for attacks on people in the name of Islam  “Islamic extremism?”

Is financially supporting attacks on people or those who call for attacks on people  in the name of Islam  “Islamic extremism?”

Is preaching in a mosque in support of attacks on people and or those people or organizations who do so in the name of Islam “Islamic extremism”?

and that’s just in terms of basic terror attacks, let’s go a bit further:

Is killing someone who converts from Islam “Islamic extremism?”

Is preaching it is acceptable to kill someone who converts from Islam “Islamic extremism?”

Is financially supporting either those who kill or preach that killing someone who converts from Islam “Islamic Extremism?”

We can play this game all day with Honor killing, attacking gays, attacking non Muslim in “Islamic” areas etc etc etc…

Once these things are defined (and we need to pressure them to be defined) then it will be an easy matter to point out the people, the groups and the Mosques that fail within the definition of “Islamic Extremism” and challenge England to act.

It’s a baby step, but with some effort and care England just might be taught how to walk:

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One of the things that really fuels success for the left is ignorance.

When you have people ignorant of the truth it is easier to sell the message of someone as a Hero and someone else as a villain and two stories today perfectly illustrated this.

First we have this from Marquette University where they are using Textbooks authored by Domestic Terrorist Bill Ayers. Turning Point USA decided to see what the Student body thought of that fact.

It’s actually gratifying to see that the youth of America when actually informed of who Bill Ayers is rejecting him.

On the other end we have Pam Geller who has, along with Robert Spencer been regularly vilified by the same left. You might recall they were banned from entering England and the reason given was was banned from England, supposedly because their presence was “not conducive to the public good“,

Today in the Daily Caller we discover that their actual motivations were a tad more shall we say “nuanced”

I have received initial feedback from Post to say that they do not expect that there would be any reaction from the US Administration to these exclusions.

We do have concerns with some of the reasoning in the sub, particularly citing pro-Israeli views and. [sic] Pro-Israeli views (and also support for waterboarding) apply to a large number of Americans, including former Presidents. If, for instance, Geller and Spencer were to request details of their exclusion under FOI/DPA or other mechanism, that being pro-Israeli is cited as a reason may be problematic and they could argue publically that their exclusion is on the basis of their support for Israel.

I may get further advice from Post later tonight which I will send to you first thing in the morning. Meanwhile, we advise removing references to being pro-Israel from the main body of the sub as this is not grounds for exclusion.

So we have the Government trying to hide support of Israel as a motivating factor for banning Americans.  That’s bad enough but it gets worse when you consider who they dispatched to build the case against Pam & Robert:

One of the other among a multitude of agencies investigating our case was a Casework and Operations Red Team for Special Cases. That’s right: the Home Secretary employed a Red Team on our case. Red Teams are designed to devise new strategies and approaches to deal with a threat.

A Red Team to investigate Pam & Robert?  Seriously?

Now if this information had been revealed at the time of their banning England might have found themselves much too embarrassed to follow through and questions might have been asked about the use of taxpayer funds earmarked to defend Brittan to suppress speech rather than protect the public.  Are these Red Teams or the Neville Chamberlain Teams? Frontpage Mag nailed it:

To the Dhimmi crowd, being pro-Israel is just another way of offending Muslims and when you offend Muslims, then bombs start going off.

Last year on the occasion of their banning I said this in an open letter to the British Government:

With the decision to exclude Pam Geller and Robert Spencer who have argued tirelessly against Jihad, against Honor Killings and against Islamic Violence you have taken an action that is so diametrically opposed to the principles of freedom of speech and expression that I would not think a country that calls itself “free” would dare do so.

The revelation of these documents unfortunately removes the blissful and convenient ignorance of these facts.  The left can only hope that they can do their best to maintain the ignorance of this to the general public indefinitely

An open letter to the British Home Secretary:

6/26/12

To The Rt Honorable Theresa May MP

Dear Madame Secretary

As a defender and advocate of the freedom of speech I would like to formally request denial of entry into the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland.

With the decision to exclude Pam Geller and Robert Spencer who have argued tirelessly against Jihad, against Honor Killings and against Islamic Violence you have taken an action that is so diametrically opposed to the principles of freedom of speech and expression that I would not think a country that calls itself “free” would dare do so.

As a person who has long admired England and its history I am simply astounded that the land that brought us Magna Carta  the basis for the limitation of the power of royalty, the Nation whose common law has been the foundation on which the principles of the protections of right of men all over the world, including those United States  have their origin.  The country that stood alone against one of the greatest and most powerful forces of repression that the world has faced has decided that a 50 something Jewish Woman of modest means and a soft-spoken Catholic man are so dangerous, so unacceptable and so beyond the pale that their presence and live presence at a political rally threatens the peace of the nation.

I have often wanted to go to England and only the incompetence of those in charge of our travel  kept my wife and I from honnymooning there a quarter century ago.  I have dreamed of visiting some of the places where the history of the world was made and shaped not to mention indulging my sons and I in our Doctor Who fandom.

However I can’t reconcile those desires with the exclusion of my two countrymen whose only offense is to try to protect the equal rights of all Englishmen of any race, creed or color under British law and know that if I found myself in England in addition to all the things I would want to see and do I would be ethically compelled to seek out the political allies of Ms. Geller & Mr. Spencer and if they will have me, speak in their place.

Therefore to save everyone the time and effort of investigation, letter writing and appeals I hereby request to be denied entry to the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland until such time as said restriction is removed from Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer.

My Best

P Ingemi

Aka Pete I DaTechGuy , or DaTechGuy on DaRadio

Update: Stacy McCain has the same idea:

I’m trying to get an e-mail address for Theresa May, so that I can send her a request that she also ban me from the nation whose honor she has so despicably surrendered to the despotic rule of sharia.

Great Britain has been remarkably tolerant of radical Islamists in their midst but apparently there are some lines that are beyond the pale in even in England…at least if you are a member of the House of Lords.

Lord Ahmed, 53, who in 1998 became the first Muslim life peer, was reported to have made the comments at a conference in Haripur in Pakistan.

A Labour Party spokesman said: “We have suspended Lord Ahmed pending investigation. If these comments are accurate we utterly condemn these remarks which are totally unacceptable.”

Now realize he is not being “suspended” from the House of Lords, or having his Baronet “suspended”, he is not even being sanctioned by the British government at all. He is being suspended from the Labour party.

So this is what “Great” Britain is reduced to, offer a reward for the murder of a US president and be suspected from a political party.

I’m sure the radicals are quaking in their boots.