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About BomberPat

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  1. I don't think we necessarily disagree. I agree that the manifesto is one that should be garnering support, and that Corbyn is a large part of the reason it didn't. Any Labour leader will be up against major criticism from the media, but he did an utterly dreadful job at providing a counter-narrative. But at the same time, we wouldn't have had that manifesto without Corbyn's push to the left. We wouldn't have seen the conversation around austerity change from seeing it as essential to seeing it as a political choice without Corbyn. I think Blair's Third Way model is defunct for a lot of reasons - partly it comes down to trust, partly it comes down to the Third Way/centrist politics being designed to win over middle-class voters, when what we're losing now is working class support, so a push further in the wrong direction could be disastrous. And, again, this election has hardly been a ringing endorsement of centrist politics in any other quarters, so I find it hard to support the idea that Labour would have won had it leaned more in the direction of the Lib Dems, or any of the ex-Labour MPs who stood on a centrist platform and lost. Labour absolutely need to rethink just about everything around their approach, and that's what I've been saying. But that rethink can't, as many seem to be pushing for, just be New Labour 2.0. A clear, cynical return to the Blair model would be just as disastrous as carrying on regardless under Corbyn, in my opinion. We need restructuring and refocusing on the same scale as the transition to New Labour, but absolutely not just aping their approach. I think centrism is a safe choice in times of relative stability and prosperity - every indication now is that modern voters are pushing toward (relative) extremes, not just in the UK, but globally. To pursue a centrist agenda is papering over the cracks, and in the long-term I honestly believe it would do more harm than good. Unfortunately, the downside to everything I've just said is that it's a long, long list of what not to do. I don't know what the road map looks like for where we should be going instead.
  2. I Googled it and, honestly, I'm no wiser. I could probably guess what the purpose of it is, but here's a US job description I found;
  3. Yeah - I'm from just outside of Hull myself, and have seen plenty of that side of things. My brother coaches a youth football team, they've taken on a Syrian refugee kid, and the abuse they get is appalling. The question remains, no matter how thankless it may seem, how we reach those people rather than alienating them. Some of the problem is Labour becoming too London-centric/middle class. Some of it is the perception of them having abandoned "the working class" for minority movements - which is why I think there needs to be a frank, difficult conversation about what we mean by "working class". We allow it to be used as a cultural signifier rather than an economic one (there was a lad on Twitter recently, saying he was a landlord in his 20s, but defining himself as "working class", which as a landlord he's not by any reasonable measure). When people say "working class" the word "white" is almost always implied. The perception of Labour is of having abandoned the working class to court support from immigrants and ethnic minorities. Work needs to be done to build class solidarity, in which it's made abundantly clear that immigrants and ethnic minorities, by and large, are the working class just as much as the white working class are, and that they should be on the same side. But it's an astonishingly difficult conversation to have. Similarly, I saw someone on Facebook comment on an article about a Pride parade, saying that it was disgraceful to be giving money to LGBT communities when there were homeless people on the streets. I pointed out that "homeless" and "LGBT" aren't mutually exclusive categories, and that close to a quarter of all homeless young people are LGBT, that they're more likely to be subject to abuse while homeless than other homeless people are, and more likely to be made homeless than straight people of the same age bracket. As much as the right attack the left for "Identity Politics", the right wing (and often the centre) are just as guilty of putting people in distinct identity categories and ignoring the possibility that one could belong to any number of those categories. To use another example - a lot of people on the right are obsessed with the idea that the left try to appease both radical Islam and the LGBT community and that it's an untenable arrangement. They were gleefully pointing this out during Islamic protests against LGBT subjects taught in schools. That's an issue that comprises three distinct identity categories - LGBT, Muslim, and the most sacred identity of all, Our Children. But it was barely acknowledged during that debate, and certainly not by anyone on the right, that in that mix were gay Muslims, and gay children, and gay Muslim children. The narrative is that Labour rejected the working class in favour of these minority categories. One of the many struggles moving forward should be to show that this isn't the case, and that there is no contradiction in this support. Because as much as we need to reach out to the communities we've lost, we don't want to abandon those we've picked up along the way. To me, that requires a more genuinely socialist, and intersectional approach to minority rights issues, and how they relate to class concerns. And I don't fully understand what that looks like yet. Even more than that, I don't know how you then communicate that message to people. But finding a Centrist MP you can stick in a flat cap and parade around north of Watford isn't going to be good enough.
  4. I mean, Jericho is completely wrong on how lucha tag rules work in that quote. You can tag in and out in Lucha Libre, but also your partner leaving the ring counts as a tag. To be honest, my favourite Bucks matches have all been under that rule system - either in CHIKARA, or their trios match at this year's AAA Triplemania - and if their approach to tag team wrestling is going to be as much of a free-for-all as a lot of AEW's matches have been, they should have just committed to lucha libre rules for tag matches from the outset. On their first PPV, they said that they were instigating a ten-count rather than a five-count for wrestlers to get out of the ring following a tag. Not only have I not seen that overtly enforced, I haven't heard them refer back to it once. I don't know if they expect us to know, or if they've gone back on that idea, or what. I get annoyed at the likes of Cornette saying things like "a tag has to be hand-to-hand otherwise it doesn't count, so no pats on the back or tagging feet", and acting as if it's a betrayal of everything that makes wrestling work. We've had blind tags in wrestling for decades. The rules change. As a new promotion, AEW had the ability to lay out "these are our rules, this is how we do things differently to best suit our style of wrestling", but they've only really paid lip service to that idea.
  5. The more I think about it, the more I think appeals to "centrism" as a means of removing Jeremy Corbyn from the Labour Party in the hope that any desire for genuine left-wing politics magically disappears with him are akin to those in America who think that getting rid of Donald Trump will somehow magically fix the deeply ingrained issues that got them to the point of electing him in the first place. It's a political ideology of papering over the cracks, dealing with the symptoms, rather than looking at what it is that has led people to increasingly extreme points - whether that's Brexit, Trump, or what passes for "far left" in British mainstream politics. "Centrism" is a call for business as usual, for the status quo, and a complete failure to recognise that it's business as usual that people are reacting against in the first place. We need a new direction, and Blair 2.0 is absolutely not it. Because if the centrists of the Labour Party think that Jeremy Corbyn, a fairly unremarkable parliamentarian of some thirty years, was trouble, they're going to get a real shock in a few years time if they try and silence the left wing again, to see what they come up with next time, if no meaningful action is made to appeal to the left, and to appeal in a real sense to those for whom neoliberalism and modern capitalism are the problem.
  6. I think it has to be either Rayner or Starmer. Starmer would probably have an easier ride of it in the press, but is unlikely to appeal to Brexit voters without a bit of an image rethink. There's also talk of them wanting to shy away from the next leader coming from a London constituency, which is a logic I understood, but feels incredibly shallow and pandering.
  7. The previous election saw them win more seats than in any election since 2001, and a greater vote share than in any election since 1997. On a manifesto just as left-wing as this one, with the same left-wing leader. After having lost two consecutive elections under the surefire hit of centrist Labour leadership. So forgive me if I don't buy into the narrative of the left-wing being the problem in a supposedly socialist party. I suppose we should be aiming for the lofty heights of Lib Dem centrism's 11 seats instead.
  8. Week-to-week, next to nothing any more. I used to watch NXT when I got home from work on a Thursday, since it's no longer uploaded straight to the Network, I have no idea when to expect it any more, so usually end up forgetting. AEW is much the same, perhaps moreso, because it's the only thing I watch on ITV Hub, so it's not an app I'll instinctively log into for lazy watching the way I might use Netflix or iPlayer. I haven't watched RAW or Smackdown in years. At the moment, I'm far more likely to throw on a pay-per-view from 1997 than anything up-to-date.
  9. I'm not going to reply to her, because fuck signal boosting her even more, but someone really needs to ask her, "who is your and who is our, Katie?".
  10. They had a second series (you shit!) on the table last year, and I was at a couple of shows where Alex Shane was talent scouting. I assumed that AEW would have put paid to that, but who knows? Maybe they did very well in syndication- I know that's something they were banking on. I assume ITV own the rights to the WOS name, so it's not like they could be picked up by another channel that easily, could they?
  11. I think this is an easy conclusion to jump to, but one we should try and avoid at all costs, because it's in part the sort of rhetoric that's losing support from what once were Labour heartlands. We can't tut and admonish Stanley Johnson for saying that the British public are uneducated and illiterate, and then write off entire constituencies as knuckle-dragging racists. A lot of people voted for Brexit because, quite frankly, they'd tried everything else. Voting Labour didn't see their industries come back, voting Tory didn't make them richer. As frustrating as it is to see Brexit as a protest vote against things other than the EU, for a lot of people it was simply a last gasp effort to find something, anything that might help. And these are the exact same people that an increasingly middle class Labour Party are failing to reach. Absolutely. I think the one thing Labour did correctly in this campaign was funneling far more money into social media campaigning than into establishment media - that's the only way Labour can attempt to take control of the narrative when faced with a hostile press. But it clearly wasn't enough and, from what I can tell, was either too strongly focused on pushing young first-time voters or on preaching to the converted, and didn't do enough to reach the majority. Corbyn simply wasn't a strong enough leader to take control of the narrative on any of the issues, Brexit or otherwise. This needed to be a largely reactive campaign, and unfortunately for those of us who believed in the content of the manifesto, it was too proactive. I think we need a drastic rethink on what the future of the Labour Party looks like, on a similar scale to that which gave us New Labour. But I don't think New Labour 2.0 is the answer, because the Third Way has failed as an ideology, and I think the Blair years, and to a lesser extent Brown presiding over the financial crash and the expenses scandal, played a huge part in destroying public trust in politicians. That lack of trust is what allows the likes of Boris Johnson to lie with impunity because, now more than ever, the general public assume they're all lying anyway, so it doesn't matter so long as it "feels right". That lack of trust means that a new Tony Blair will likely be seen as a smooth operator with ulterior motives, not an earnest politician doing what he believes is right. There needs to be serious consideration of how to bridge the gap between a middle-class membership and a traditionally working class voter base (including difficult conversations around what we actually mean by "working class"), around what a Labour election campaign should look like in the 21st century, and a drastic rethink of how the Labour Party relates to Brexit and to Leave voters. What worries me is that everyone must surely recognise the need for this kind of reform, but no one will agree on exactly what we got wrong. The Labour Party can pretty consistently be relied upon to learn the exact wrong lessons every time, and a kneejerk response in any direction could be lethal.
  12. I assumed I'd feel utterly miserable today, but I just feel flat and dejected. It's clear that this was a Labour loss far more than it was a Tory win. So what's necessary is a significant amount of reflection and rethinking from the Labour Party. What worries me is that every indication I'm seeing so far is that they'll make a knee-jerk reaction towards another failed ideology. The received wisdom just about everywhere is that we lost for being too left-wing, and that a return to the centre is the only solution. But that does nothing to address why we also lost under Miliband and under Gordon Brown before that, it does nothing to address why an avowed centrist party in the Lib Dems returned the second lowest number of seats in their history (second only to Nick Clegg post-coalition government) and saw the leader of that party lose her seat. This absolutely is a time for introspection, but it would be folly for that introspection to not include a serious consideration of why Third Way politics failed. It would also be absurd to think that a post-Corbyn leader would somehow lead us into a world where the press welcome them with open arms, and are suddenly sympathetic to our cause. Any Labour leader is going to be pilloried by the press for infractions real or imagined. We need to accept that as political reality, and figure out the best means to contend an election with a hostile press, not either shrug and blame them for our failures, or sell out every guiding principle in order to cosy up to them. In the meantime, I recently read the 1979 socialist/feminist book Beyond The Fragments, and the most jarring thing about it is how much it was taken as granted that there was a widely understood British left wing tradition, and how much of that was comprised of community groups, activist movements, local councils, and other agencies working alongside the Labour Party. One of Thatcher's greatest successes, and one that frankly Tony Blair expanded on, was to dismantle and defang each and every one of those organisations, and to lead us into a world where neoliberalism is seen as the natural order of things. We're left no longer rallying for a genuine alternative, but on the back foot defending battles already won. Whereas once British socialists would argue for sweeping reforms, now we're left trying to defend the likes of the NHS - trying to claw back the things we already fought for.
  13. There's one I've written about on here before; I had a vivid memory of a tag team of identical twins - in my mind as a kid they were sumo wrestlers - wreaking havoc in the Royal Rumble, getting in and out and swapping places because the ref couldn't tell them apart. It was one of my clearest memories of wrestling from my childhood fandom. Looking back, it could only have been the Headhunters in '96, but they did absolutely fuck all in that match, and did absolutely fuck all in the WWF subsequent to that. Nothing I attributed to them ever happened.
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    Even guessing that, logically, that was probably about the only thing that was going to happen, it's still 100% worth the wait, and so much better than expected.
  15. I think it came in phases. Working a company where the vast majority of our shows are geared towards young kids has been an eye-opener in reminding me what kids get out of wrestling in the first place - most kids watching wrestling don't really have any concept of a "good match", they just think the guys who look cool are cool, and that the ones who win all the time are the best. And that was probably the only way I watched wrestling during my first stint as a fan. When I got back into it in 2000, I think I almost immediately went into more of a "smart fan" guise, even if I didn't really know anything yet, as that was the culture around fandom at the time. I started buying magazines and books and reading up online and everything else, but I still don't think I was necessarily breaking down matches so much as stories - second-guessing what might happen next week, trying to get insider gossip on what the big reveal was going to be. I started to recognise that there were people in the midcard that were "better" than people in the main event, even if I couldn't necessarily articulate why. The combination of magazines and the internet, and Mick Foley's first book, opened my eyes to wrestling outside of the big two, and my (a little too late) diehard ECW fanboying played strongly into crafting an idea of what constituted "good" wrestling, and made me think that the WWF were doing it wrong by not letting everyone have Good Matches all the time, all the usual nonsense. It was about 7 or 8 years ago that I started training/working in wrestling, and probably a year into that before I really started getting a grasp of psychology. I mentioned in the other thread that we watched that RAW ten-man tag at a psychology seminar, and it was an exercise in breaking it down into the key storytelling points, and I was recognising when the key shifts were when other people in the room weren't. Since I started learning about it, I've felt like I have a strong grasp of the psychology and the storytelling techniques underpinning wrestling, of why certain things are done, and what they're intended to achieve. So if I'm breaking down matches now, it tends to be on those terms. I've never been a star rating guy - I couldn't articulate to you why Match A was a four star match but Match B five stars, nor would I want to; I'd rather talk about the story, and how well executed that was. If it took a corkscrew top-rope piledriver and a powerbomb to the apron to get there, or a sunset flip and an atomic drop, doesn't bother me so much as whether it was in the service of the narrative. I disagree that I can't go back to watching in the same light, though. A great match can still garner an emotional response, and still make you watch through the eyes of a fan. A good story can either make you forget all the insider gossip and knowledge, or else incorporate that - rather than pretending the audience doesn't know what's going on, make that part of the story, and work the people who think they're above being worked. In the past couple of years, I've lost my voice cheering for matches at live shows where the result was pretty much signposted from the beginning if you know what you're looking for, and I've cried at hard-earned babyface wins, because when you tell the story properly, it doesn't matter if you know how it works. Watching on TV is a little different, in that - especially with WWE camera techniques - I don't feel part of the audience, so don't feel part of the story, and I'm more likely to watch dispassionately, and with a more critical eye. Even then, if I'm watching with friends, I tend to get caught up in the moment of good matches one way or another, and maybe only look back critically after the fact. I'd say I watch differently, but I wouldn't say that the different is worse.
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