Projection, Paranoia, and Moral Objectivism.

There are few things more irritating, no, infuriating than being told what one’s motives are by people who haven’t the first idea about what you do and who you are asa a person. Imagine then my disgust, when a group leader of a parent group I had been invited to, that I had visited daily and contributed to online when I had time, and am friends with many of the members of a group which aims to promote inclusiveness, but in no uncertain terms has told me I have no right to talk about the group and should not even care because I have never benefitted from the group (isn’t that for me to decide?). The real grating issue is that it’s something we bloggers and activists come across everyday.

The ‘why do you even care?‘ meme -apathy begets apathy – is not even a question. It’s a derailing tactic used by those with no real interest in a rational discussion, who have already decided they are absolutely right, and that they want you to stop talking so their illusions about you wont be challenged or even broken. Its not that they particularly care or don’t either. They have merely imagined a scenario, decided on how they feel about it and convinced themselves that their way is the only correct way to deal with it. As my friend and fellow opinionated-pain-in-the-bum, (I say opinionated, but everyone has opinions on something, if they say they don’t they’re liars) Reap Paden, points out: ‘everyone thinks that everyone else should react exactly the same as they do’. This is called projection and it’s something we need to be conscious of and avoid doing. Why? Because it’s really annoying and rude, that’s why!! This attitude is also known as ‘moral objectivism’ and a socially acceptable in only the views of Ayn Rand fans.

“Angela Claisse
Apr 25, 2012 @ 21:16:32 [Edit]

Anna, you have never been to our group and have never commented on our group’s facebook page, so I find this blog of yours quite bizarre to be honest with you. Why do you care so much about a group ending that you have never attended and have never benefitted from? It seems you are just looking for an argument and were trying to rile up our group members with your negative comments. You can’t argue this matter by saying it’s because you ‘care’ – you don’t. You just want a juicy bit of gossip for your latest blog!

You were not in the room when the closure of the group was being discussed during our parents forum meeting, nor do you know the full reasons why we have been asked to end our group, so please keep your ‘views’ about this to yourself. No one is asking you not to ‘care’, the council are not trying to ‘silence’ you and it is not a form of ‘censorship’. Karen and I as facilitators of this group are simply asking you to not use our group as an example for your ‘blog’. In future, maybe you will think about resourcing your ‘blog’ material from areas and issues that DO directly affect you.”

Yes it is censorship, because it was demanded that I take down every thing I posted about the group, they did not ask me not to use the group as an example for my blog – which I wasn’t doing; I was trying to raise awareness and had been asked to share the comment.   What I write on here is my decision, not theirs but this is irrelevant because she has conveniently chosen to ignore the fact that I asked permission to share the comment on my blog as a good means of circulation of that information.   I cannot attend the sessions as they clash with my son’s playschool. Not being a driver and the centre being more than a mile from the play school, my hands are tied. I don’t have inexhaustible funds to spend on buses. Apparently, this renders me incapable of genuine concern about a vital source of support for local mums, and unqualified to express any view on the social efficacy of such groups regardless of my position.  This leaves the groundless accusation that all my suggestions for possible ways to  save the group are ‘negative’ and that I was only there on the page to cynically there to gather hot gossip for this blog.  I think she would have preferred it if I HAD been ‘negative’ about the group; it might have given her a genuine reason to complain about me.  Considering the closing statement of the comment, if she’d actually read any of my other posts she’d know they rarely focus on me. I’ve left the facebook section now too now because I can anticipate sarcastic and snide comments being made on everything I post and if everything I post is now going be haunted by a paranoid neurotic, I can’t see it  being helpful anymore.  This isn’t the ethos of the group as a whole, this is the attitude of one person who has decided that they dislike me and is plainly miffed that obvoiusly I don’t care about being ‘liked’ if it means sitting by and doing or saying nothing when I know I can help.  She has conspicuously not been able to give any concrete examples of exactly how my comments have ‘negative’.  her accusations are based on more groundless assumptions about me.

“All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.” Albert Camus

She knows nothing about me, she hasn’t ever attempted to interact with me, every comment I make is taken as negative and argumentative. She hasn’t even asked what my kids names are, or why I cannot attend the meetings, she has just assumed I haven’t been going because I can’t be bothered. She doesn’t actually seem to care about how it is her attitude toward me which is negative, not really. Let’s not let the facts get in the way of a good rant, after all.  All she knows about me is that I have a blog, that I’m open and candid with my views -I don’t see the point in pretending I’m someone I’m not – and that seems to be enough for her to draw every unflattering conclusion under the sun about me and then launch into a diatribe about not having the right to comment and inferring that she thinks this blog is no more than a grubby gossip column,  that I’m such an awful person that all I really want is gossip for this. Hah, that’s news to me! It would be pathetic if the accusation wasn’t so funny and she if wasn’t displaying her ignorance about me as obviously as she is about my blog. Just because I have not been attending the sessions in person does not mean I have not benefitted from the group in general. Does this mean that while I remained mostly an observer I am ‘unqualified to comment‘, she however, feels she has both the right and qualification to decree to me not only what sort of person I am but dictate how and in what form someone can benefit from the group and then tell me what I can write on my blog? Surely that’s for me to decide?

The self-centeredness she has exhibited in her comment to me has frankly appalled me and is not the attitude I would expect from a leader of a group such as Little Acorns. If she doesn’t care about that which doesn’t touch her (this country’s whole problem if you ask me), that’s her prerogative, but she has no right do decide what can be cared about by whom. As people who read this blog know, I’m deeply invested and involved in raising awareness for Responsible Charity.  Its time consuming and its important but no, I cannot say it does directly benefit me. It affects me on the level of one human being’s compassion for another and I have gotten involved because its the right thing to do. If writing about the charity on here means free publicity for Hemley and the others, and its what I can do then it’s what I will do. According to the ‘why do you care?‘ meme, I shouldn’t even think of it.  If the founder accepted the help of only those he felt benefited from the charity (pretty much the Church’s attitude) or those he felt were affected by certain issues, his work and efforts, how effective would the charity be? If the founder had cared only for his own immediate needs and benefits, the wonderful work this charity has done and is still doing (at present, raising funds and setting up a school for the slum children in Calcutta) would never have happened and nor would the millions of other causes and civil rights movements over time; the end of appartied, the end of the slave trade, the fall of the Berlin wall, votes for women, to name a few. They weren’t just run by people who had something to gain by it, people got involved because they cared.

And that is the point of this post. Not only to answer that her assertion that I had not benefitted from the group, and that what I should care and write about is not her decision to make, but to question how she feels she knows ‘who I am’ when she said herself that she wouldn’t know me from Doris. In that nominal ignorance (I stress nominal as she is merely not in possession of the facts) she can say within a 99% – nothing is certain- surety, what my motives are, and why I went on the Facebook group in the first place. Who among us can honestly say that about anybody, even about people we DO know? Her prejudice against me is (as all prejudice is) based on ignorance.

She has also projected her attitude onto me based upon her own posting habits. It may well be the only group she’s involved with so has time to spend considerable efforts on it. I would not presume to speak for how much time she has to run it and post in it, any more than she should be passing judgement on my posting habits. When I have some thing to post I post it on my wall or in the relevant group and I’m involved in many. I don’t write about me for a reason: I don’t think the humdrum of my everyday life would be particularly interesting to most people outside my immediate family.  If I wanted a journal, I would keep a journal and I certainly would not publish it for all to see.  What am I doing when my children are sleeping? I am studying. When they are awake, my attention is on them. Not that I need to justify myself to anyone, but I would not say that any physical lack of time to involve myself in lengthy facebook threads – I read them even if i don’t comment – or attend a group disqualifies me from holding a view about a public service which should not be arbitrarily closed down or changed to fit the social model of the upper-class idiot in charge, who has never struggled for anything for a day in his life.  I still think she should rethink how she has spoken to someone who took time away from something important (yes, my degree coursework is important) to help and raise awareness. The question isn’t why I care, it’s why I shouldn’t.


Sure Start sure to Stop!!!

Also see:

Yesterday, my friend was told that thier playgroup at our local Surestart centre would have to be shut down at the end of June. The reason? The group is not ‘disadvantaged‘ in the PC euro-speak sense of the word.  It means they are not at the end of their tethers and about to snap.  They are not an ethnic minority, they aren’t on income support (many don’t qualify for a penny other than CTC and CB).  They aren’t drug addicts. The children come from two-parent families and are happy, safe, well-fed, loved and well-cared-for.  Due to this our council believe they have no need for fun or educational play with their parents or carers.  Apparently married women whose husbands go to work everyday, have no significant and problems and are in no need of any outside support. It’s not a case of cost.  It’s a case of Tories not being able to satisfy their need to pretend they are in touch with reality.

Just to clarify, of a group of 15 of so,

  • 4 have lost children. 
  • Some of us suffer with post-natal depression, 
  • some with eating disorders, 
  • some have children with behavioural problems. 
  • Some have chronic fatigue syndrome, 
  • some of us just genuinely rely on the help and support of the women in this group to get through a rough patch. 

The group was started so women and children from ALL walks of life could interact with each other and play with their children, to help them learn and to learn something from each other and make friends. They have had specialists in to talk about sleep disorders and tantrums, they’ve organised educational trips for the children and have been there for each other to help and support when times are hard.  This group is something to be proud of and now they’re trying to take it away.  It’s got no overheads bar the use of the room and the group leaders are volunteers.

Nobody is ever excluded but the group are being openly discriminated against for being too ‘normal’.  When asked  what could be done to keep it running, the lady in the Sure Start centre said “Get your children on the Child Protection Register“.  I understand that she was unhappy herself and this was a glib reply given in the heat of the moment, but it seems that only those in the depths of despondency will ever get any help from now on and those who are not there (yet) should apparently stop complaining and be grateful we’re not worse off (as the cost of living soars to pay for the mistakes of the rich and the banks).  What’s next Cameron?  Workhouses?  The return of the poor laws?  Why the need to separate and isolate?

This is social cleansing.  Sure Start centres should cater to EVERY family who are struggling, not be limited according to a rich idiot’s  idea of ‘class’ (yes, Cameron I’m talking about you and your whipping boy, Clegg).  That rich, pampered idiot has NO clue about what ‘the disadvantaged’ are:  those whose flag he loves to wave every time he needs to feel magnanimous and distract us from the tax cuts he’s just given to his rich friends.



You may notice the wording has changed and been added to.

This is because ‘the council’ and some Sure Start staff don’t want us to discuss this outside the group.    I used the centre for the breastfeeding support service regularly.  It was a life saver, I knew nobody in my local area and I was really struggling to keep going.  When I wasn’t breastfeeding I stopped attending.   This group started several months after my son began Scalliwags playschool and it clashed.  This simple event clash apparently means I’m not supposed to care about the group, never mind that this awful precedent also means I won’t be able to attend later services (that our council tax goes toward) either if the Tories go ahead with their insidious social cleansing. It now seems I’m not supposed to care about what doesn’t directly affect me. The world would be in a very sorry state if everyone thought like this.  Pardon me for having a social conscience.

I have changed the words to this as my friend has asked me to (I pasted a post she made and corrected some of the grammar and syntax so they were actually her words) and deleted as many of the posts as I can find but this DOES NOT mean I have to like it.  I’m doing it for the sake of not falling out with someone I like but it still feels like censorship.

I’m going to write a strongly worded letter to my MP!

School building programme scrapped in latest round of cuts | Education | The Guardian

Read the full list of cancelled projects

Michael Gove today cancelled Labour’s school building programme, suspending projects for 715 new schools as part of the coalition’s latest tranche of spending cuts, which also saw funding culled for new housing projects, school swimming pools and eco-towns.

A report in Monday’s Guardian, gave testimony to the true level of valued that the Coalition place on fairness and education.  That value is none! The ‘offer’ to all UK schools to buy their way out of the system and become Academies was carefully laid down prior to the announcement of this cut to spending on education. This,  in no way exonerates them from this shocking act of Thatcherism.  The cancellation of 715 school building projects has been determined  the best way to ‘ease the deficit’ but more spending cuts are yet to be announced.

The coalition government took its axe to a further £1.5bn in spending commitments, cutting £1bn from the schools budget and millions from the business department, communities and local government and the Home Office.

The education secretary has also announced that the £55bn, 20 year Schools for the Future project will be scrapped.  It is no wonder then that they had to use the Academies bill beforehand in order to mask the real issue: that the coalition were going to cease investment in the education of our children by as much as they could get away with.  While VAT rises, and the banks pay back the float they were loaned as slowly as they can, and MPs refuse to pay back the money they stole on ludicrous expenses claims that would have gotten anyone else fired, who will really pay back this deficit we hear so much about?  It won’t be us paying it back. The withdrawal of education funding and schools being virtually forced into choosing academy status means that the people who will be paying for this will be our children.  Michael Gove told the Commons that the scheme had been hit by “massive over-spends, tragic delays, botched construction projects and needless bureaucracy”.

“”He said: “There are some councils which entered the process six years ago which have only just started building new schools. Another project starting this year is three years behind schedule.

“By contrast, Hong Kong international airport, which was built on a barren rock in the South China Sea and can process 50 million passenger movements every year, took just six years to build — from start to finish.””

He compared the building of a single airport with the plans for building of over 1000 schools!  Is this guy for real? Having worked in the building industry myself for several years (I was an administrator for a builder’s merchant for seven years), I at least have some idea about the limitations to even a single building project besides the countless surveys that must be carried out and plans approved. The “bureaucracy” is the administration needed to manage the task.  THE WEATHER can halt building for days, and the list goes on.  Delays happen on any building project for numerous reasons.

“Ed Balls, the shadow schools secretary, said: “Today is a black day for our country’s schools, it is a damning indictment of this new Tory/Liberal coalition’s priorities and a shameful statement from this new secretary of state.”

The Chief Secretary of the Treasury, Danny Alexander, claims to have found £154bn of spending commitments made in the ‘dying days of Labour‘.  These would apparently been impossible without either additional borrowing or under-spending in other areas.  The departments involved have been instructed to reduce their spending.

The Department for Business, Innovations and Skills, has been ordered to find £265m in savings.  These have been identified as loans to the Forgemasters of Sheffield steel works and the automotive industry (or what is left of it) Which means our industry will further suffer and add more strain to the public purse through job losses.  The Communities and Local Government Department have announced that £220m, for new housing projects, will no longer be going ahead but gave no further details.  Meanwhile the Home Office must find £55m.

The Department for Education will be axing £169m of capital expenditure projects and £831m will be saved on greater financial control by

  • Clawing back ‘under-spends’ on existing school projects.
  • Non-allocation of £110m contingency fund.
  • Scrapping £24m on co-location of health and social services on school sites.
  • Scrapping £15m on public swimming pools.
  • Scrapping £2.5m school contribution to Eco-Towns Initiative.
  • Scrapping £50m Harnessing Technology Grant to improve IT in schools.
  • Scrapping £50m on improved IT system for social services.
  • Scrapping £13m for Youth Capital Fund to provide out of school activities for teenagers.

They have given us neither figure nor time-scale for the cuts planned for the Sure Start budget. Instead they have given an entirely non-committal briefing mentioning ‘managing down’ the expenditure on Sure Start, Early Days, and Childcare Grant and again been waxing lyrical about ‘discussions’ while giving no indication as to either what these involve or what their true intentions are. This is contrary to a statement made on the 7th June 2010 by Gove, assuring us that NO cuts would be made to Sure Start funding.

A Whitehall source said the whole process of deciding how much of the Building Schools for the Future programme would be scrapped had been “bloody chaos”, and that the weeks of uncertainty had cost schools, local authorities and the construction industry time and money in preparing for schemes which have now been scrapped.

Mr Alexander has since decried the spending commitments on education as unnecessary.