Tuesday, 22 August 2017

I Told You So;.....................................

Toppling statues? Here’s why Nelson’s column should be next







And right on cue, some attention seeking Guardian journalist writes and article and appears on Channel Four News demanding that Nelson on top of Nelson's column be removed because of his alleged support of Slavery. So my posts re dinosaurs wasnt far from the mark, except she didnt dare demand we remove Churchills' statue, well at least not yet. I only wish I could predict the lottery numbers as accurately.
 So for all those Corbyn supporting left wing luvvies who are also paradoxically wargamers, perhaps it's time you thought deeply about both the hobby you love and the left wing views you have, because frankly I don't see how one can square that circle.
Oh and whilst on this rant, can I suggest we remove the saintly Nelson Mandela's statue and street names from all of England. I mean HE was a convicted terrorist unlike the Admiral who saved an entire nation from French Imperialism. 


48 comments:

  1. yeah. f*****g nonsense. Even with me being somewhat left of centre its just jumping on nonsensical bandwagons imho. Then again, Nelsons last wish was to be kissed by a man so that might give him a reprieve �� I agree with you re the Mandella statue as it happens, although I wouldn't support the apartite regime in a million years. Is there a statue of Gerry Sands yet?

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. PS except that I am a wargamer and a left wing Corbyn supporting luvvie remainer and a Christian 😉

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    3. Colin,
      One of the many ironies for me is that during my re education in a former life, Nelson was held up as a great example of diversity. I mean he was a severely disabled person who overcame his disabilities to hold down a full time job.

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    4. Robbie, you're getting it!!! :-) Actually I read that Nelson had applied for DLA but was assessed by the DWP as being fit for work.

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  2. Well the weak link in your argument is 'The Guardian' - the Sun in joined up writing ! : )

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    1. better crossword. the answers are a bit more stretching than cat or hat or tit and so forth 😂

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  3. And knocking statues down is not new - there was a statue of Nelson in Dublin that disappeared in the 1920's and all the Victorian ones in India have been removed , personally I like statues but you can't please everybody : )

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    1. Except of course it was merely the early IRA attacking a symbol of British Imperialism? Not sure about their target though, given how Nelson was seen as a revolutionary in his time.

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    2. Svjek, actually there are still plenty of Victorian era statues still standing in India.

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  4. All a bit surreal to me. Orwell's 1984 into my reading queue...

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    1. More like dystopian, except I struggle to understand what that actually means.

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  5. I agree with you Robbie that destroying any statues is pointless; history has passed and is there to be learned from not destroyed just because it doesn't fit in with modern thinking. But why degrade your own argument by making it party political and insulting people with pejorative language. There is nothing paradoxical about being a left of centre wargamer - a lifetime studying warfare both for work and as a hobby has shown me how awful and usually unnecessary war is.

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    1. Do you know Chris, I've met an awful lot of wargamers over this many years. I dont think I've ever met one who gloried in war.Perhaps because a lot actually studied war in some detail. As for the political element, well perhaps you may be correct, but in this current environment one wonders where we are heading.Probably to Hell in a Handcart.

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    2. if I'm going to hell it's in my BMW 😉

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  6. I agree with you Robbie that the removal of statues because they no longer fit the revisionist bollocks that is being spouted today achieves little other than further division in society. History has an unpleasant side it's true, but rather than simply remove it perhaps we should be learning from it.

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    1. Paul,
      What I've observed nowadays, that if something or someone is upsetting, then the clamour is to Ban them or it. It seems that by the item simply ceasing to exist then its no longer a problem. Ostriches and sand come to mind.I blame peoples' inability to actually deal with life.

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  7. I find your "rant" a little worrying and I have two questions for you.

    Are you saying I can only be a wargamer if I read a newspaper of which you approve, such as the Daily Mail or one of Murdoch's rags?

    Also, Mandela was branded a terrorist under the laws of the rascist apartheid regime of South Africa. Are you saying you agree with them?

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    1. Why be worried, unless we knew each other. Firstly in the 1970's there was a movement that followed various wargame shows around and began protesting outside of them. Their reasoning being that the people who attended were warmongers and worse. Implying wargamers followed a love of nationalism, when usually the opposite was correct.Eventually the protesters moved on to their next protest and left us alone. The only consequence due to them seemed to be Reading wargames group changed the name of their show to Colours, which personally I thought a bit insipid. But each to their own.As for my 'rant' re wargamers of a certain political persuasion, my suggestion was that if they support the views of the journalist who wrote the drivel re Nelson then perhaps they are in the wrong hobby, which should normally be about a love of military history which is the antithesis of Corbyn and his followers. As for Mandela.Planning to kill people irrespective of their political views is wrong.Even he accepted that violence was not the way to change apartheid, which changed by negotiation and political pressure.I have never supported segregation or the like, and you are making that assumption simply because I gave him as an extreme example of the crass stupidity of the journalists original article.

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  8. "So for all those Corbyn supporting left wing luvvies who are also paradoxically wargamers, ..."

    I don't think there's reason for this sort of language. You have your political convictions, others have theirs, but using language like this only reinforces the notion that all wargamers are extreme-right-warmongerers.

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    1. Phil,
      I can always rely on you to offer another view, which is good. Because to debate usually finds a consensus. Perhaps my missive was a bit strong, but in the 21st century there seem to be so many people who are looking to scream 'victimhood'. Perhaps its because their own lives are so empty, that they feel the need to piss off the majority just to prove they exist.You know as a wargamer, that one couldnt meet a more genial if sometimes intense group of hobbyists who love history and love toy soldiers. The jump to warmonger is usually in the minds of people looking to scream 'fascist'at anyone who doesn't hold to their sad views. I suppose if one loved playing with Scalextric they could be accused of being anti the environment, thats how stupid the whole supposition is.

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    2. Over the years, I have learned that there are many wargamers, and come to wargaming for different reasons. But as you say, we all share a passion for toy soldiers and military history. But that doesn't mean we cannot look at that military history with a critical eye, and question some of that history, including the way we want to remember that history. But as many of us elarn when we grow older, many of these things come in shades of gray, and not in high-contrast black-and-white :-)

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    3. BTW, don't get me wrong. The removal of Nelson's statue is not something I would support ...

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    4. Scalextric is powered by electricity and therefore was ahead of its time as far as the environment is concerned. Trouble is that like now you can't go very far in an electric car ......

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  9. BTW, you Brits have it easy, having been on the "good side" since Napoleon ;-)
    In Belgium, we have discussions these days about statues and streetnames depicting guys who were on the good side during WW1, but collaborated with Germany during WW2.

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    1. Phil,
      It seems that collaboration is a whole different ball game, and probably a lot more relevant than demanding that Nelson be removed from his plinth.Heavens knows how the French deal with the issue given their past.

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    2. If you're referring to Napoleon ... he's a national hero in France. He's the one who exported the ideals of the French revolution. The view of Napoleon in many European countries is not that of the dictator who tried to conquer Europe, which I think it the dominant view in the UK. DOn;t forget that many countries had a strong shake-up when becoming part of France, and many of the judicial and societal reforms from the Napoleonic period still have a strong influence.

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    3. I was actually thinking of the French and how they dealt with their own collaboration issues.

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    4. Sorry, I shouldn't have missed that ;-) With all this Nelson talk and me reading a few books on Napoleon lately, my mindset is firmly in the Napoleonic era these days ;-)

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    5. Which is a great place to be.

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  10. I am currently painting my 15mm statues!

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    1. My favourite was one I saw of Boudicca.

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  11. I'd have to say it would be a farce to get rid of Nelsons statue, one of the better things about this country is our ability to get on and historically fudge and compromise about stuff. I guess post brexit everything is much more black and white, choose your tribe and despise the opposition, still at least we've got Charles 1st and Cromwells statues still up!I also have to say I don't have any problems being left of centre and a wargamer, for me it's a craft thing and a useful way of focusing my interest in history and if I'm lucky getting an occasional game that I'll probably lose!
    Best Iain

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    1. I have lately forgotten the whole point of the ethos behind my blog. Wargaming and reading history has contributed so much to my life, probably for good and bad. I love the colour and spectacle of toy soldiers, but know that the realities are a mile away from what I love about our hobby. In my former life, writ large above my door were the words, Knowledge is Power, and frankly if one studies the history of man and the many mistakes we have made in the past,one should in theory be able not to make them in the future. Expelling our history is frankly Orwellian in the nightmare that would inevitably follow.

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  12. The Guardian (and I say this as a relatively neutral reader) has a few 'push the boundaries' type articles every now and then. I don't think anyone would seriously think of removing Lord Nelson. What it does do though is show us that it is becoming more important to think about why we commemorate certain people, and to have a solid and rational answer should that question be asked.

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    1. Currently there is a petition demanding that Marks and Spencers stop selling the Daily Mail on the grounds of their racism and anti migrant stance.It seems to have had a few usual suspects backing this bollocks, but what I have noticed increasingly is that if one vocalizes a demand constantly, it receives a response, usually contrary to commonsense. If one has to justify every statue then the clamour has won? I mean how does one justify a statue to the fallen of the First or second Boer War? Britsih Imperialism against simple farmers? Cecil Rhodes? Oxford's justification is he gave a lot of money to the University. Hardly a reason to keep his statue is it? Live and Let Live would perhaps be a better answer, or simply, 'Get a Life.'

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  13. a thought. put Mandela's statue on Nelson's column and change the name to Nelsons' column .

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    1. Now Colin, You spoiled yourself there.

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  14. Back to statues. I think we have to accept that knocking down statues makes damn good press - remember those US soldiers using their tank to topple the statue of Saddam and then all the locals stated whacking it with their shoes.

    On the other hand having some twerp suggesting toppling Nelson's column is beyond ridiculous. On Mandela I'm sorry I'm not with you on that point. Yes he was convicted by the apartheid regime but I think most people would accept that the conviction really did not stand up either then or now historically, legally, morally and politically. He was then the President of SA, a Nobel peace prize winner and in the galaxy of useless politicians then and now at least he achieved a peaceful transition and the semblance or normalcy. He also wasn't corrupt.

    This really started in the US and I regret to say much of what both sides are saying there is total nonsense. The white supremacists are beyond the pale and toppling statues of almost totally forgotten confederate generals achieves nothing except throwing buckets of petrol on the fire which the extremists on the other side exploit.

    Guy

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    1. Evening Guy,
      How are the London Elite?, Just joking. Offering up Mandela, was to show the pathetic argument put forward by that stupid woman. I predict within five years, some council in this country will attempt to pull down some statue erected by the Victorians, or remove some street name. We have villages up North where the streets catalogue all of the victories of our Imperial past, including the very dubious victories. They are just too good a target,and would reinforce the credentials of our Socialist masters up here. As for the USA, well that's a whole other mess. There can be nothing worse than prodding some white supremacist given their love of high powered automatic weapons.Sadly only the innocent will suffer.As usual. It always seems the people who demand these things live safely away from the consequences of their demands.

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  15. Hi Robbie, although often horrified by Guardian articles and occasionally their usual readers, I'm not surprised. As Disraeli said of them, 'they love every country more than their own', and 'they would give away everything that doesn't belong to them'. Granted, many of these 'liberals' have good memories, but they seriously lack common sense. By the way, Napoleon was a nasty little tyrant, we were the good guys in the Napoleonic wars too. And the American and French revolutions were disasters for both the USA and Europe. Hope everyone has a nice day! Michael

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    1. The last two sentences show that not only "left-wing luvvies" suffer from a distorted view on history. ;-)

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    2. Phil, I won't debate heavily here, and I am well aware of the counter arguments you may have. Washington held a party in the late 1780s, he asked a Quaker friend if he was enjoying the occasion. He replied, 'no, too many friends are missing, and within fifty years from now there will be such a bloody war between the states.' Well the quaker was out by a few years, but he was close enough. Concerning France, had they embraced a constitutional monarchy as promoted by Lafayette, that country and Europe would not have suffered the Napoleonic bloodbath. I stand my ground, bloody revolutions rarely if ever give more than they take. But, I respect your position. Michael

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    3. History if of course full of "what-ifs", but historical events also happened because of a reason. If they would not have happened at the instance they did happen, they might have happened a few years later under slightly different circumstances, but perhaps with very similar outcomes.

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    4. That, Phil, is the Marxist view of history, propagated by History departments in Western centres of education. While occasionally it may happen that way. That we are all marching towards a Socialist utopian civilisation, no. Marx could not comprehend demographics, the rise of Chinese nationalism, and Sunni Islam as political forces. Even if his world view ever prevailed, it would collapse in two generations. The ruling class would fear the people, and end up giving the key jobs to members of their own families, and finally bribing the 'generals' to keep them safe. Communism would ultimately turn into Feudalism....... its human nature............. ok, Robbie, I will say no more! I'm painting up French revolutionary cavalry now, some of my own castings. Nice chatting with you Phil.
      Michael

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    5. Hello Michael,
      Sorry for my late reply, its been a busy old few days.Sadly the Guardian like so many other newspapers have lost a lot of credibility.They clearly have their own political agenda like all the other media outlets. Even the Times, strays away from impartiality. I swear to God though that a lot of left leaning persons espouse some view simply to provoke a reaction, except nowadays the reaction tends to be more vitriolic and violent than in the past.Perhaps if these people had to face the physical effects of what they espouse then they wouldnt be so keen to create such upset. Its my fault that I have stepped outside of the wargaming world and created the dialogue on my blog. Unfortunately I have always 'shot from the hip'and then regretted what I have said, even if it was correct. [Normally about 100% of the time. Just joking, only the Pope can claim that privilege.] Anyway I will attempt to turn my attention to more pleasant events.

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My 6mm Napoleonic set up.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.
Austria 1809.

Austrian Hussars

Austrian Hussars
Hinchliffe figures

Austrian Grenzer

Austrian Grenzer
Austrian Grenzer

Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2013
Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2012

Smoggycon 2012
Smoggycon 2012

Smoogycon 2009

Smoogycon 2009
My French getting another beating