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Discussion > Was Enoch Powell a Prophet or a Pariah?

Alan Kendall

Which bit do you think I do not understand? ^.^

May 6, 2016 at 4:45 PM | Registered CommenterDung

How can a highly educated and politically astute man like you think it wrong to speak what you believe is the truth just in case some people can not handle it?
May 6, 2016 at 3:06 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Dung, assuming there is a Mrs D, and assuming she is on the other side of the average from "skinny", what do you tell her when she asks "D, does my bum look big in this tight dress"?

May 6, 2016 at 5:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin A

Fortunately even though we are 68, my wife's bum looks fine to me hehe However I would never say that to her ^.^
You are far to clever for my liking :)

May 6, 2016 at 5:53 PM | Registered CommenterDung

You are correct, the Bishop didn't cover Climate Change in the early days and did have a Bill Of Rights which was discussed from time to time. I think it disappeared some time after the blog moved here from where-ever it was hosted before. I sometimes think that we could do with a bit more variety from the Bishop. In my opinion the EU and BBC discussions would have fitted in well in the early days.

As regards Little Englander, I had in my that he could be considered a British Nationalist and from his anti-EU stance. Not sure sure about him being xenophobic or his views on the empire. Which is why I used the phrase you could say because I'm not entirely certain of his views.

May 6, 2016 at 5:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Dung. Shall we start with "rivers"? I thought I gave you a good hint.

May 6, 2016 at 6:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Alan Kendall

Would you have been more comfortable if he had said pools of blood?

May 6, 2016 at 6:30 PM | Registered CommenterDung


I agree with you about more variety and I accept the restrictions on 'off topic' in the main forum. However considering the quality of the people on Bishop Hill (all because of Andrew of course) it just seems to be begging for wider debates. At the end of the day I accept whatever the Bish says but hope that the lack of any instructions to the contrary means that he is OK with wider debate in discussions :)

May 6, 2016 at 6:35 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Sharia Law is abhorrent
Not to Muslims, it isn't, gc!
The world is full of little "details" that people find somewhere between abhorrent and highly desirable depending on your upbringing and/or religious beliefs.
If you genuinely believe that Allah dictated the Qu'ran to Mohammed and every word is the word of God (unlike the Bible which is understood to be the inspired word of God and in need of some interpretation) then you really don't have a great deal of flexibility in what you believe and if you want paradise then you stick with what your Holy Book says just as Christians stick with what their Holy Book (as interpreted!) says.
Which does of course pose the question of if the Qu'ran is the literal word of God how come there are Sunnis and Shias and Wahhabis and various other sects all with slightly different interpretations. Of what 'literally' means, I guess!
Problems only arise when we forget to say as, for example, Saudi comes pretty close to saying "look, this is what we believe in this country and this is what our laws are based on so please respect our culture and our laws and if you wish to practice your weird beliefs in private we won't interfere but our culture and our customs and our laws are what count in this country.
I don't know why we didn't make that clear from the outset.
The situation vis-a-vis Jews is different but one thing at a time!

May 6, 2016 at 6:52 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

How can a highly educated and politically astute man like you think it wrong to speak what you believe is the truth just in case some people can not handle it?
May 6, 2016 at 3:06 PM | Registered CommenterDung

OK Dung, you deftly deflected my Mrs D's bum question.

I have worked for one or two wonderful companies, where I have leaned an incredible range of things. In one, I asked my boss "Is it ok to say I've xxx?". [Can't remember what; probably some omission or screw up on my part that was going to cost the company a big dollop of money.] He said: "Martin, you can say *anything*; it just depends on how it is positioned". Yep, lesson noted.

Enoch Powell was clearly a super-bright guy - you don't get to be a professor of Greek at the age of 25 if you are no more than a bit above average. But I wonder if he had an element of marginal Asperger's, nerdism, call it what you wish, that results in some very bright people having a blind spot when it comes to foreseeing people's reactions.

He spoke the truth as he saw it - that was what he always did. But if he had positioned what he said differently, the reaction might have been quite different.

His 'rivers of blood' speech resulted in a reaction that did him no good, and, you could argue, also resulted in the issue not being addressed as it needed to be. It's hard to work out why, super bright as he was, he gave a speech that provoked such a reaction when, positioned differently, what he had to say might have resulted in quite a different overall result.

May 6, 2016 at 7:20 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Dung. Not at all "Rivers" implies predictions of significant inter-racial clashes producing multiple deaths. To my knowledge those predictions have yet to happen. So to date EP is not a prophet, and is still considered a pariah. End of?

May 6, 2016 at 7:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Martin A

You are one of the good guys in my book and I would not lie to you or mess you about. When I was 24 I was indeed also super bright but thanks to the NHS I do not believe that I am in that category any longer. However to turn to your comments I do believe I have some aspect of Asperger's myself. I have given up on understanding other people or how they think/react, I accept that I am different. I have no real friends and I will never understand women, even my wife ^.^.
She does have a pretty bum though hehe.
you admit that Powell spoke the truth as he saw it but suggest that he could have said it differently so that the effect might have been 'better'. That goes back to another truth about climate change that was discussed on BH. Some people argued that we would have a better effect on mainstream opinion if we admitted luke warming was a fact even though at that time nobody here believed it and I argued against that. This blog then became a lukewarmer blog and for me that was a pathetic change but of course it is not my blog hehe.
Bending the truth can bring short term gains and avoid short term pain, indeed it is sacrosanct amongst all political parties other than UKIP. In the long term the truth always wins even when it is hard to swallow.

May 6, 2016 at 8:42 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Alan Kendall

The phrase 'Rivers of Blood' was not quantified by Powell and for most people it did not need to be. I believe the events I referred to, actually do deserve that description since only the IRA had previously brought such slaughter to our streets. You are playing with words Alan.

May 6, 2016 at 8:53 PM | Registered CommenterDung

'The world won't be a fit place for honest men to live in till the blood of Lord Bittlesham and his kind flows in rivers down the gutters of Park Lane.'

May 6, 2016 at 9:44 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Now I'm looking in Herodotus. This guy was not so much a prophet as a plagiarist. And some here doubt the reality of 'rivers of blood'.

May 6, 2016 at 9:53 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Yup, de Nile.

May 6, 2016 at 10:11 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim


Please continue to live in De Nile with my blessing ^.^

May 6, 2016 at 10:41 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Strange that Dung, I thought it was you playing about. After all it was you who challenged what I had written to Stewgreen, not the other way around.

I will now consider what you write with greater care, having read what you admitted to Martin A. I suspect, however, we shall remain political opposites.

May 6, 2016 at 11:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Dung, "depends on how it is positioned" absolutely does not equate to "bend the truth".

@AK: ...significant inter-racial clashes producing multiple deaths. To my knowledge those predictions have yet to happen.

I imagine that Paris, November 2015 does not count?

May 6, 2016 at 11:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin A

Mike Jackson, I am not a Muslem, and don't seek to defend Islam, or indeed any religion, as I am not a religious person. The complete mistrust between Suuni and Shi'ite is a good example, the differences between UK Catholics and Protestants are trivial in comparison to Rome and the Orthodox Churches of Russia and Greece.

If you understand some of the difference between the various different interpretations of Islam, plus the reason why Saman Rushdie's book title 'The Satanic Verses' caused such offence, you will appreciate that the Moslem world is unlikely to unite, without infighting. Not dissimilar to the Christian Crusaders, all answering to Rome, but fighting for self interest.

The Catholic Church does have a leader, so does the Church of England. The Muslem world does not, however various individuals are proclaimed to be, on behalf of countries/regions etc. The Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran lived in exile in Paris, before replacing the Shah of Persia, triggering a mass of conflicts that still rumble on.

Since the creation of Israel, the Moslem world has wanted it obliterated, but has failed. Some of their combined attacks have been fraught with mistrust. Egypt flirted with the USSR under Nasser, and so increased USA support for Israel.

Osama BL was trying to unite Moslems against their sworn enemies. He did not fail, but the Moslem world has not united in terms of working together. The UK remains one of the best places for Muslems (and others) to fight extradition to the USA (and other countries) and so remains a handy place to reside.

My original point was that Radicalisation of Muslems does occur in the UK, as it does in many countries, because the UK is a safe place to do it, not because the UK to date has been seen as No1 Target. Over the last few years, their attacks have been aimed at destabilising regimes and economies that are not sufficiently Muslem. The 'Arab Spring Revolutions' occurred with comparatively little bloodshed, and generally were welcomed by the 'West'. Unfortunately, the replacement regimes have not met the approval of the Extremists.

Would the UK be immune from attacks by Moslems if Enoch Powell had been listened to? No! But the attackers might not speak English.

Your comment about Saudi Law is perfectly apt. Saudi men see UK Law as stupid, but it does mean they can get away with stuff in the UK, that is illegal in Saudi. Brits are unlikely to get away with 'inappropriate' behaviour in Saudi though!

May 7, 2016 at 1:25 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Martin A.

You are of course correct. I was being insular and arguing that the prophecies had not come to pass in the UK.

On the other hand, is your rebuttal really fair? Enoch Powell was speaking before the rise of militant Islam, nor was he speaking of carnage directed from hostile groups from overseas. Similar attacks have taken place in countries with small minorities, like Spain. Surely EP was basing his predictions on his belief that cultures and races could not amicably live together without violence occurring, a belief denied across the world.

May 7, 2016 at 6:04 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Tout de suite, Tutsi;
Machete love, or Uzi.
Now and then
Ever again,
Rootsie, tootsie, the Bootsie.

May 7, 2016 at 7:39 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

I'm not particular familiar with the history of Islam. But it seems to me we're in one of its expansionist phases, the fifth? The third attempt into Europe? It's a pity Charles Martel and Jan Sobieski aren't better known these days.

May 7, 2016 at 7:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

SandyS, over history, sucessful dynasties/empires have been built on greed/power/might etc, but have needed success and stability to survive.

Osama BL hoped to unite Islam, in the naive belief that everybody would be so much more happy and pure living a simple peasant life, even if it took bloodshed, money, hi-tech etc to achieve it. Just like Communism, Green Economics etc, there is an assumption that human greed will not lead to the 'message' being warped and distorted to favour the few.

The irony is that OBL had access to a lot of money, to enable everybody to live as pure peasants, and assumed that if he could live without obvious trappings of wealth, there was no reason for anyone else to want anything better. He was a deluded and dangerous dreamer, who could afford to make his nightmares come true. His 'sucesssors' are not so dreamy, and therefore more dangerous, but they have seen income decrease.

May 7, 2016 at 8:53 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

"stewgreen do you think I am drawing people into 'trick issues'?" May 6, 2016 at 4:44 PM | Dung

No mate, not in the way those trolls aim seemed to be ; ie start a thread, and then incite BHers to say something racist etc.

May 7, 2016 at 9:31 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Powell himself said he was a failure in that he had 3 causes, all of which had failed : retention of the British Empire so that he could become Viceroy of India, non - membership of the EU, and hostility to mass immigration of any kind. It is a mistake to suggest that he was especially opposed to Moslems. He would have said the same things about the influx of Eastern Europeans that we are seeing. So he was a crackpot. Neither prophet nor pariah, just a deeply eccentric individual.

May 7, 2016 at 11:25 AM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes