Nosemonkey's EUtopia

In search of a European identity

Blog resolutions for 2008

Late, as I’ve been out of the country for a while – and not that anyone’s reading this as my RSS feed is still screwed (and the site is still highly compromised by those bastard spammers) – but…

Once I’ve got that all sorted and moved to a new host (Sonnet UK, who used to be pretty efficient, have still not even acknowledged my pleas for help after more than a month of waiting), here’s what I’m planning:

1) A name-change. March 2008 will mark the 5th anniversary of Europhobia’s initial birth. The name was chosen because I originally intended the blog to be an exploration of anti-EU sentiment. I rapidly gave up on that idea. I’m pondering EUtopia as the new name – reflecting my unrealistic hopes for the EU, in the original Thomas Moore sense of Utopia as “No place”, a perfect polity/society that doesn’t actually exist. It’s hardly the most original name going, but seems entirely appropriate. And, most importantly, I don’t think any other blog’s taken it yet.

2) More considered analysis, less lazy rubbish put up purely to keep up readership numbers and/or because I feel I really ought to comment on some new development while it’s still fresh. Something I’ve been pondering a while, now that I’ve got so little free time, and confirmed via three articles all bloggers should read:

Micro Persuasion: The Lazysphere and the decline of deep blogging: “The Lazysphere – a working definition – is a group of bloggers who… Rather than create new ideas or pen thoughtful essays… simply glom on to the latest news with another ‘me too’ blog post… People who used to work hard creating and spreading big ideas resorted to simply regurgitating the same old news over and over again, often with very little value add. It’s almost like we stopped the real work of reading, thinking and writing in favor of going all herd, all the time.”

The Wardman Wire: Columnists and reporters are the new ‘bloggers’: “one of the biggest threats to the accuracy and reputation of news-based blogs is when bloggers quote “mainstream” newspapers and websites verbatim without doing the necessary fact checking to make sure the newspaper reports are accurate… I think it comes down to bloggers adopting the traditional habits of serious newspapers. Check facts, separate news from comment (or at least flag which is which) and shoot from the hip a bit less”.

Obsolete: Churnalism, getting it wrong and the US primaries: “We’ve gotten all too used to demanding instant opinion and supposed expert comment, when the very best of it usually takes the best part of a day or longer to emerge… We don’t expect to know the immediate details of a news event the second it happens, so why do we want the ‘commentariat’ to provide exactly that[/] …This isn’t to be Luddite about it in the way that some resisting online publishing do, but to acknowledge that journalists ought to be above making instant judgements based as Martin Kettle writes, on assumptions and prejudices.”

Comments are still screwed thanks to those spammers, but feedback welcome as always via nosemonkey [at] gmail [dot] com… Happy New Year, and that.


  1. I’m wondering about starting a slow blogging movement.

    Thanks for the link.

    Matt W

  2. Bah, just change one letter: Europhoria

  3. Why does everyone think Guido Fawkes AKA Paul Staines is a neutral. Guido Fawkes is an extreme right winger.

    His recent castigation of anti racist campaigner Mr Hain is a sign of what he hates. Hain sacrificed his security against a brutal state to fight for democracy for blacks in south Africa. Fawkes despises him for that.

    He joined the Young Conservatives whilst at University.

    Here is the real facts about Fawkes

    Having joined the Federation of Conservative Students, he described his politics as “Thatcher on drugs”.

    Staines worked as ‘foreign policy analyst’ for the extreme right wing Committee for a Free Britain, a right wing Conservative pressure group, alongside David Hart. Staines acted as editor of ‘British Briefing’ a long standing publication that sought to “smear Labour MPs and left leaning lawyers and writers”.

    He does the same now but claims he is neutral. Funny how he nevers insults the tories bosses infact seems to let them of the hook. I am sure you can see he is no neutral. He is no neutral but wait the later points are even worse. .

    Staines relates of his work with the Committee: in the book

    (1998). Altered State: The Story of Ecstasy Culture and Acid House, 2nd edition, London: Serpent’s Tail. ISBN 1-85242-604-7. —

    “I was lobbying at the Council of Europe and at Parliament; I was over in Washington, in Jo’burg, in South America. It was ‘let’s get guns for the Contras’, that sort of stuff. I was enjoying it immensely, I got to go with these guys and fire off AK-47s. I always like to go where the action is, and for that period in the Reagan/Thatcher days, it was great fun, it was all expenses paid and I got to see the world. I used to think that World Briefing was a bit funny. The only scary thing about those publications was the mailing list – people like George Bush – and the fact that Hart would talk to the head of British Intelligence for an hour. I used to think it was us having a laugh, putting some loony right-wing sell in, and that somebody somewhere was taking it seriously. You’ve got to understand that we had a sense of humor about this.”

    The CFB invited Adolfo Calero, the Nicaraguan Contra leader, to visit the UK.

    What kinf of sickoe works with the contras and supplies guns to them.

    In a November 1984 report the Sandinista government alleged since 1981 the Contras had assassinated 910 state officials; attacked nearly 100 civilian communities; caused the displacement of over 150,000 people from their homes and farms; and damaged or destroyed bridges, port facilities, granaries, water and oil deposits, electrical power stations, telephone lines, saw mills, health centers, schools and dams.

    A Sandinista militiaman interviewed by The Guardian stated Contra rebels committed these atrocities against Sandinista prisoners after a battle at a Sandinista rural outpost:

    Rosa had her breasts cut off. Then they cut into her chest and took out her heart. The men had their arms broken, their testicles cut off. They were killed by slitting their throats and pulling the tongue out through the slit. Fawkes must be so proud. So think of that when you read his blog.

    What kind of sickoe thinks it is fun to support sick creeps like the contras.

    The CFB launched a number of policy campaigns and initiatives during 1988. It also supported the Community Charge (Poll Tax).

    In time for the October 1988 Conservative Party Conference, the CFB published a British Foreign Policy – The Case for Reform, featuring a photo on the front cover of Foreign Secretary Geoffrey Howe giving the clenched fist salute at a meeting in southern Africa. In the pamphlet’s conclusion it stated “The Foreign Office is one of the last of the great institutions to escape the refreshing breath of Thatcherism.” Howe maintained he had not been giving a black power salute.

    So now we see why fawkes despises hain. Re,ber he was a foreign policy analyst..

  4. Not sure quite how that’s relevant, old chap (either to this particular post or to Guido/Paul’s current politics and public profile).

    After all, in the 1980s Tony Blair was calling for withdrawal from the EEC and for total nuclear disarmament, as well as publicly supporting Clause Four. And the US was flogging weapons to both Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.

    If a week is a long time in politics, two decades is an eternity.

    (Disclaimer: Guido owes me a pint – although as he has done for the best part of 18 months now, that’s as much a cause for bitterness as sympathy…)

  5. I’d be interested to read an account of your journey from Europhobe (which I’m assuming from the blog name was your initial position) to your current pro-EU stance. What made you change your mind?