SpinWatch, or JewWatch?

One of many lists of prominent Jews SpinWatch keeps under the tag of 'the Israel lobby'

Strathclyde University Professor David Miller struggles to deny that ‘SpinWatch harbours anti-Semitic views’, pleading that the long posting by the notorious Jew-baiter Kevin McDonald was put up by accident, and that the ‘volunteer’ who did it is no longer a contributor (but surely the ‘volunteer’ is the same contributor who wrote most of the pages about prominent Jews on the SpinWatch site, and still a prolific poster?).

What Miller cannot explain is why it is that SpinProfiles (now renamed ‘Powerbase’) has such a preoccupation with Jews. The answer is that the quest for secret conspiracies by malevolent forces is written into SpinWatch’s whole way of working.

The approach of listing sinister agents of influence and asserting their hidden connections; the ambition to cleanse the public realm of lying and corruption; the belief that one’s fellow citizens are in the grip of powerful mind control; the puritanical belief that filthy lucre is corrupting the state  – these are all the paranoid fixations of conspiracy theorists.

And the original conspiracy theory, as everyone knows, is the theory that the Elders of Zion are pulling the strings to lead us into war and destruction.

David Miller’s anti-business viewpoint might be tempered by Karl Marx’s central insight that ‘Capital is a social, not a personal power’ – except that that is one of Marx’s teachings that Miller has jettisoned. Instead Miller favour’s the approach of writing down the names and addresses of all those who are making more money than him, burning with militant anti-capitalism.

Very funny, but not a good model for a public interest project

Miller’s model is the 1980s anarchist fantasy Written in Flames: a pamphlet that lists all the names and addresses of business leaders, with the not-too-subtle meaning that we should firebomb them, in revenge for the left’s many defeats. B.S. Johnson’s novel Christie Malry’s Own Double Entry has the same theme of the loser’s dream of violent revenge. But Miller is too much of a coward to take direct action, preferring the poison-pen method of listing the particulars of those people he imagines are the secret cabal that runs the world, with the dream of ‘exposing’ them.

Led by the paranoid-delusional Miller, SpinWatch is a loaded gun, already being waved in the direction of the ‘greedy bloodsuckers’ that feature in the anti-Semitic propaganda of the 1920s. But once the conflict in the Middle East is thrown into the mix, the gun goes off.

Other leftists, like the Socialist Workers Party, are cautious about blaming the Jewish lobby for US policy in the Middle East, but SpinWatch knows no such restraints. It draws up lists of prominent and influential Jews here , here and here.

At SpinWatch they think that it is Jews who have subverted American foreign policy, pushing it towards war.  If that seems surprising, read SpinWatch’s page on ‘Neoconservatives’. According to the SpinWatchers, the neoconservative movement is primarily responsible for the American’s belligerent policy in the Middle East, and, as they argue, Neoconservatism ‘remains largely Jewish in its composition’ (which just is not true – unless Ronald Reagan is Jewish). The Neoconservatives’ motives are explained wholly in terms of their Jewishness: they ‘were propelled by resentments against WASP elites—the men who had ignored the Holocaust, they felt, and “frozen out” Jews from the establishment.’

Gerry Healy, of the Workers Revolutionary Party

Under the guise of ‘anti-Zionism’ all of the listing of prominent and influential Jews seems to make sense. Other leftists would be cautious about drawing up lists of Jews, remembering the shameful record of the Workers Revolutionary Party that collected the names of prominent British Jews for Colonel Gadaffi.

This is the group-think at SpinWatch: if someone calls you anti-Semitic, then you must be doing the right thing, or as Miller writes: ‘this is the sort of unsavoury claim that groups linked to the Centre for Social Cohesion frequently resort to’. A search of the site for the phrase ‘anti-Semitism’  shows that it is almost always used in the context of countering “alleged” charges of anti-Semitism, or of defenders of Israel ‘playing the anti-Semitic card’. Miller writes ‘our websites oppose anti-semitism just as we do other forms of racism such as Islamophobia’ – which is a bit like saying ‘we are against anti-semitism, but moving quickly on, we are a lot happier talking about other forms of racism, such as Islamophobia’.

As far as SpinWatch is concerned, there is no anti-Semitism: there is only playing the anti-Semitic card. And there are Jews of influence, dragging the good people of Scotland, England and America into their infernal wars.

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