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The Little Octobrists prepare for their future role

“Schools are accused of ‘brainwashing’ students as children as young as 12 take part in mock trial of Tory MP Richard Drax for ‘benefitting from slavery’ because of his ancestors.”

14 comments to The Little Octobrists prepare for their future role

  • Stonyground

    We all benefitted from slavery didn’t we? It helped to power the industrial revolution, without which we would all still be scraping a living from the soil.

  • Ferox

    None moreso than the descendants of slaves, at least in the West.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    Once upon a time:

    “Fathers shall not be put to death for their sons, nor shall sons be put to death for their fathers; everyone shall be put to death for his own sin.

    But now it’s guilt by Association and Ancestry.

    Can we use the same pseudo-logic for Woke Folk to retry (say) the descendants of various Massacres? Glencoe, Dunoon, Peterloo, etc.

    Alastair Campbell (for example) could be prosecuted for Ancestral War Crimes. Some might say “About time, he’s long overdue being prosecuted for something“.


  • We all benefitted from slavery didn’t we? It helped to power the industrial revolution (Stonyground, September 25, 2021 at 9:45 am)

    Socially, the industrial revolution came about because England became a free country centuries earlier. There was a ruling that the common law utterly forbade slavery (allowing, as it had to, that explicit statute law could over-rule – but it never did in England) in Elizabethan times, two hundred years before Lord Mansfield restated it. Our freedom gave us the inventiveness that created the industrial revolution.

    Economically, the industrial revolution was powered by coal, and was what gave Britain the power to wage war on slavery during the long Victorian peace, when the Royal Navy’s anti-slave work had a higher average annual loss rate than any of its other stations.

    The cost of the slaves we paid to free (that debt was not paid of for more than a century) and the cost of the fighting and patrols that freed many other slaves was significant, albeit very affordable to that wealthy society. Thomas Sowell and others have exploded the idea that profits from slavery were key to western economic expansion. One of the reaons was that slave-owners tended rather to be spendthrift and end in debt than to be saving and invest in more worthwhile activities. Another was that, while slavery was economically important to the African chiefs who sold them and who could not have afforded western goods otherwise, it was a much smaller and (economically, not just morally) retrograde part of the overall western economy.

    So it is simply a fact (an agreeable one to us who owe so much to that society as Stonyground said, but annoying to the woke who hate that society) that the things we keep from the industrial revolution are not slavery-derived. The universality of slavery in Africa guarantees that almost everyone had immediate ancestors who benefitted as well as ancestors who suffered, till they left that world for the west or the west compelled abolition. In the UK, you must go back a thousand years and more to say the same.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    I wonder if the Woke Folk will comment on the Norse Slave Traders? Raids were commonplace, and we (in the British Isles) were the victims, not the perpetrators.

    Slaves or thralls were amongst the most important commodities traded by the Vikings. They acquired slaves primarily on their expeditions to Eastern Europe and the British Isles.

    Irish women were so often shipped-off to Viking places that maternal DNA tests in Iceland frequently trace back to Ireland.

    Slave trading also existed before the Viking period, but with the numerous territories that the Vikings conquered and their extensive trading networks, slavery could now operate within a system and bring them great wealth. … Slavic peoples of Eastern Europe were for a long period an obvious target for European and Nordic slave traders. It is from this area that the term “slave” originates.

    I could go on, but you get the general picture?


  • Stonyground

    Thanks for the detailed response, every day should be a school day. My thought was that much of the industrial revolution was based on the manufacture of textiles, which at the time involved wool and, more significantly, cotton. I don’t know how important cotton was in the whole scheme of things but I would have thought that it was quite important.

  • Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    In the Southern States of North America, cotton was very important. They used humans from Africa to pick the Cotton.
    In the hierarchy of human needs, when an individual has more than enough, the individual starts to ‘give back’ to society. I wonder if some societies also go through something similar, such as trying to end slavery, or feeling kind to animals?

  • Stonyground (September 26, 2021 at 6:57 am), the danger of saying ‘every day should be a school day’ is that I may then not shut up until the demands of my day job compel me. 🙂

    Industrial mass-production of slave-grown cotton did not really take off until Eli Whitney’s post-1800 invention of the cotton gin had spread widely in the southern US, at which point the UK’s industrial revolution had been underway for quite some time. In the US civil war, the confederates knew that federal ‘King Coal’ would outperform their internal war economy, but it was a surprise to the south that ‘King Cotton’ proved little more of a match for northern ‘King Wheat’ in forcing Britain to break the US navy’s blockade. The federals did distribute funds to the unemployed in the Lancashire cotton factory districts during the civil war to help minimise such political pressure as there was, and the real but very manageable distress caused there by the halting of southern cotton exports is a good indicator of cotton’s visible but far-from-overwhelming role in the vast breadth of the UK’s economy at that time.

    (BTW, it has been argued – and I agree – that a key concealed strategic concept of Lee and Jackson in the 1862 and 1863 planning of the northern invasions was to cross the Susquehanna to reach and ruin the Pennsylvania anthracite pits, thus striking a deadly blow to the northern economy.)

    A far more fundamental point is that capitalism does not in its nature wish cotton-pickers to be to be slaves, still less slaves lifelong and unto untold generations. The wealth of the slave-tended Caribbean sugar islands was important in the 1700s, long before cotton, but Britain freed the sugar slaves decades before the US freed the cotton slaves yet capitalism’s sweet tooth did not go unslaked nor generate even a trace of a demand they all be re-enslaved, or other slaves found, lest the Victorians’ economy be damaged instead of their teeth. Confederate demands to retain slavery, South African demands to impose apartheid, etc., have always been about sacrificing normal capitalist trends to an outside agenda and have often been very visibly opposed at the time by white-owned southern bus companies or white-managed South African train operators or other local representatives of capitalism.

    It is merely the extreme example of this that whenever capitalism has been abolished (Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany, Mao’s China) the western abolition of slavery has always been reversed or the institution has expanded hugely.

    The triangular trade was an example of arbitrage. Cheaply-produced industrial-revolution goods from Britain were shipped to African chieftainships where the good were very valuable and the people very cheap because the mostly-stone-age economies of the locals had no means of making the goods or employing the people to significant productive advantage. Those cheap unskilled people were shipped across the Atlantic to sparsely-populated new-world colonies, where they were more valuable because they could be used to grow very simple crops, cotton being the simplest of the major staples. These cheaply-grown crops were then shipped across the Atlantic to populous very-developed Britain where they were very valuable because they would not grow there and/or land in the UK was relatively much more expensive and/or the UK’s relatively skilled labour force much better employed in work only it could do.

    My point is that capitalism did not require these people to be slaves and survived freeing them pretty well. The social pressures and needs that made them slaves in Africa and delayed freeing them in the west make a long and involved subject – which I will not add to this already-too-long comment – but the one thing they were not was an innate aspect of capitalist economic development.

  • Paul Marks

    The industrial revolution was mostly financed by the profits of domestic farming – the idea that it was financed by the profits of “slavery” or “Empire” is false.

    As for “blood guilt” – the idea that your ancestor did X so you are guilty of X, this is very much Gospel of Matthew style thinking.

    Supposedly (according to Matthew) “the Jews” gathered in front of the Roman Governor of Judea, and said that they took the blood of an innocent man (Jesus Christ) upon their heads – and upon the heads of their children and children’s children and….

    I am Christian by religion – but Jewish by “blood”, so clearly I am guilty of this brutal murder.

    The 12 year old children will have to organise a show trial for me – and then shove me in a gas chamber.

    Given the beliefs of modern modern teachers, I am sure they would be only to happy to organise my “trial” and killing.

    By the way – the Conservative Party has been in office for many years. Why is the education system still dominated by Marxists?

    Or am I not allowed to ask that question?

  • Paul Marks

    The only good thing about this is that exposes the enemy – the Marxism of the education system, and the Marxism of the “human rights lawyers”.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way – in case anyone does not know.

    There is no such “crime” as benefitting from having ancestors who were slave owners – if there were such a crime many BLACK people (perhaps ALL black people) would have to arrested, as slavery was endemic in Africa for thousands of years – most likely all black people, and all white people (indeed all people), have ancestors who were slave owners – as slavery was almost universal in human societies in the past.

    To put someone on trial for a “crime” that is not a crime at all – shows what this “distinguished human rights lawyer” is.

    As for basic liberties such as the right to keep and bear arms (recognised in the British, not just American, Bill of Rights), or Freedom of Speech (against anti “racism” laws and-so-on), if anyone thinks that “human rights lawyers” are interested in defending basic liberties (rather than exterminating basic liberties) – then I have a nice bridge to sell them.

  • Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    Paul, are you allowed to discriminate like that? Wouldn’t the law compel you to sell that nice bridge to whoever asks you first? Even if they are Communists?

  • TDK

    The idea that slavery financed the industrial revolution is common on the left. I always say, that being the case, Portugal which was also heavily involved in the slave trade over a longer period and owned more slaves in Brazil than in the US should have been at the forefront of the industrial revolution. Similarly Arab countries continued the slave trade on land and at sea over an even longer period, but saw no similar industrial development. Even Marx recognised that wage slavery was an improvement over bondage slavery.

    More important to British industrial development was the shortage of horses during the Napoleonic wars which meant that steam engines became financially viable particularly for the transport of goods. More generally, coal was the industrial revolution. And by extension, the reduction in the requirement for physical labour made slavery redundant.