Mention David Icke to anyone over 30 odd and they will probably say “nutter”, and mention the classic Wogan Show where the former Coventry City keeper, and Grandstand anchor claimed to be the Son of the Godhead, tried to explain his unique view on the world, and encouraged everyone to wear turquoise shell suits.
Surprisingly enough he was relieved of his BBC job and after a tabloid mauling of epic (and quite vindictive) proportions, and was rarely seen or heard of again except for the odd “David Icke is Bonkers” story if it was a slow news day.
I viewed his antics as a rather pathetic cry for help from someone who was obviously a bit unhinged, but I thought his treatment at the hands of the Sun in particular was just disgusting, making a joke out of mental health issues for cheap laughs and to sell papers.
They did the same again when Frank Bruno was sectioned for his own and his family’s safety; “Bonkers Bruno” being the ever so sensitive banner for that day.
However, in 1998 or so Jon Ronson did a big feature piece on Icke for the Guardian following him on a speaking tour of Canada and doing extensive interviews with the guy and his rather oddball entourage.
What came across was far from the image of boggled eyed mentalist crank of tabloid fame, and instead we found Icke as a concerned and erudite commentator on World Affairs.
Yes, he has some pretty bizarre beliefs, but then again Dubya and Mr. Tony invaded Iraq basically because God told them to, the former admits to hearing God’s voice and the later would prefer be judged on his policies by a Divine Being rather than say, the Labour Party or the electorate.
It could be argued that their belief in God has a much evidence behind it as David’s thoughts about the so called Illuminatae being descended from giant lizards when you bring it down to basics.
What interests me about Icke is his commentary on how Democracy is used as a cover for Global Capitalism’s control of the media and politics, we are kept in the dark over so many things, from the environment, medical progress through to basic Human Rights and the surveillance of the Orwellian 1984 society.
His website www.davidicke.com , provided you take it with a shovelful of salt is lively and informative, especially the medical stuff which backs up my theories about the corrupt nature of the Pharmaceutical Industry, and the material on the environment is insightful.
BUT, and this is a major one, he falls into the tired and lame trap of the “Zionist Conspiracy”. Yawnworthy if it wasn’t so dangerous and frankly racist.
The reason that this daft theory can seem convincing is that historically Jews have punched above their weight in influential areas such as finance and politics, and vested interests in the Capitalist World do everything to maintain the Status Quo, so any “conspiracy” is based on ownership of Capital rather than religious/ethnic affiliation.
As for the show, it obviously dealt with the nutty stuff, but allowed Icke to demonstrate his ideas about Big Brother as he was moved on by the Police attempting to film veteran Peacenik Brian Haw in Parliament Square, and he did a very funny spoof as a political reporter talking to the studio.
“I have just been over there in Parliament, and I haven’t a bleedin’ clue what’s going on Huw, but this is what we’ve been told to tell everyone…..”
It was a fair and balanced effort which left me respecting Icke’s contributions to Political debate but with an air of unease regarding his methods and lifestyle. Controlling would have to sum it up for me.
However, it is easy to sit there and slag the system off, calling for Revolution. Trouble is, as long as the Government gets the economy right, and is seeing to be looking after the Public Services well, most people don’t give a bugger…. Which is why it’s important that those who are worried to change things by getting involved in mainstream things such as CND, other NGOs, the Peace Movements, and yes, the Labour party.
There are plenty of us in the Party who have some similar views about the nature of capitalism, but constructive debate in a atmosphere of trying to move things on has to be the way forward.
Recent conversations in the Party with David Miliband and Alan Johnson show that the Leadership is keen to reinvigorate and freshen thing up with new initiatives.
We MUST have a contested Leadership election when Blair steps down. Brown needs to show maturity and acknowledge that we are a broad church, otherwise paranoia will reign and Labour will become moribund and unable to continue to win elections. Last year was a clear warning.
In 1985 I despaired that we would ever achieve power and threw my lot in with Militant, mainly it has to be said as a reaction to what I saw as Kinnock abandoning the miners.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing and of course Kinnock was right; take the defeat and play the long game. Not that this was much help to the thousands of families that were the ones to pay the price.
But if the Labour Party had lived or died by the fate of the Miners Strike, it would have been the later, and it wouldn’t have been the bastards at the top of the Tory Party that suffered…
I don’t regret my time as a Militant activist. I met and worked with some fantastic and passionate people such as Dave Nellist and Pat Wall, and the values that I had then still ring true, but you have to accept the rules of the game, and you can spend all your time being worthy and the such like, but as a certain someone (Tony Benn) said;
“Values and principles without power are ultimately futile”.