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People’s parties/The same situation

Joni Mitchell:

Thirteen 1972

Big Star:

(Remember) walking in the sand

This version is smoking! Jeff Beck’s “Rock and Roll Party” honoring Les Paul with the Imelda May Band:

London Indymedia

You can follow events here.

Pictures of London burning from Al-Jazeera here, and from the Boston Globe here.

The one I love

R.E.M.:

Mayer Hawthorne with Daryl Hall and Booker T.:

London riots

There’s a context to London’s riots that people should know:

Since the coalition came to power just over a year ago, the country has seen multiple student protests, occupations of dozens of universities, several strikes, a half-a-million-strong trade union march and now unrest on the streets of the capital (preceded by clashes with Bristol police in Stokes Croft earlier in the year). Each of these events was sparked by a different cause, yet all take place against a backdrop of brutal cuts and enforced austerity measures. The government knows very well that it is taking a gamble, and that its policies run the risk of sparking mass unrest on a scale we haven’t seen since the early 1980s. With people taking to the streets of Tottenham, Edmonton, Brixton and elsewhere over the past few nights, we could be about to see the government enter a sustained and serious losing streak.

The policies of the past year may have clarified the division between the entitled and the dispossessed in extreme terms, but the context for social unrest cuts much deeper. The fatal shooting of Mark Duggan last Thursday, where it appears, contrary to initial accounts, that only police bullets were fired, is another tragic event in a longer history of the Metropolitan police’s treatment of ordinary Londoners, especially those from black and minority ethnic backgrounds, and the singling out of specific areas and individuals for monitoring, stop and search and daily harassment.

One journalist wrote that he was surprised how many people in Tottenham knew of and were critical of the IPCC, but there should be nothing surprising about this. When you look at the figures for deaths in police custody (at least 333 since 1998 and not a single conviction of any police officer for any of them), then the IPCC and the courts are seen by many, quite reasonably, to be protecting the police rather than the people.

Here’s a map of the areas hit by riots and/or fire.

Live faster, die younger

A no-class-system-in-America joke

An oldie-but-goodie, found on the Internet: These two English professors run into each other and start shooting the breeze

London, burning.

Here’s two quotes from the BBC online twitter feed;

2046: Former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone says the government has failed to realise the level of discontent among young people who are facing a “bleak” future.

2047: He says senior police officers have been warning the government that there was a danger of violence like this for a while.

and then;

2139: Mike Fisher, leader of Croydon council, says “mindless thugs” are destroying businesses and people’s livelihoods, and it is an “outrage”.

This is freaking me.

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