Welcome To Zelo Street!

This is a blog of liberal stance and independent mind

Monday 31 July 2017

Diana - The Sun’s Sour Grapes

The twentieth anniversary of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales is fast approaching, and so the amount of Diana coverage in the press is ramping up, as her image and memory still sells papers. But not all is sweetness and light in the media mansion today, because Channel 4, which is detested by the right-leaning part of the Fourth Estate, has scheduled a documentary including previous unseen video footage.
This was recorded by former actor and public speaking coach Peter Settelen as part of his work to improve her speeches and other speaking appearances. Diana talks at some length about her life, including her troubled marriage to the Prince of Wales. Channel 4 has decided to go ahead with their documentary, while the press, which has not got the tapes, has decided to play the other side of the field and condemn the broadcaster.

And at the front of the queue to put the boot in on Channel 4 has been the Murdoch Sun, which has put the story on the front page under the headline “GRUBBY BLOOD MONEY”, telling readers “Princess Diana’s pals urge Channel 4 to axe film featuring unseen tapes on her doomed marriage over fears it will hurt Princes William and Harry”.

The Sun suddenly taking William and Harry’s feelings into account? And there’s more: “Royal pals have blasted the TV station for its decision to air the clips - recorded by Diana's voice coach Peter Settelen - which she never gave permission to be made public”. The “Royal pals” are mainly Diana’s former pal Rosa Monckton. And we don’t get to know if anyone actually asked Diana to give her permission to use the tapes.

At this point, anyone remembering the way the Sun, and the rest of the tabloid press, obsessively pursued Diana, especially when she was no longer part of the Royal inner circle, and therefore easier to doorstep and follow, will hear the bullshit detector sounding long and loud. Had the videotapes been made available to that same press, or, in the caae of the Murdoch goons, Sky TV, there would have been no controversy.
The Sun never had any qualms about long-lens or other paparazzi photography, and nor did any of the other papers suffering a fit of the vapours over Channel 4 today. The Murdoch faithful never exercised the slightest restraint when there was a Diana story in the offing. The intrusion extended even to her last weeks, and continued as the tabloids bullied and hectored the Royal Family to fly flags how the press decreed they should be flown, and who should return to London and speak to their people.

There is only one reason why the Sun, and all the others running this story, are so sour about next weekend’s documentary: they didn’t get the tapes for themselves. It’s worse for them because Channel 4 is the broadcaster they all despise, the TV channel that declines to be pushed around by the Murdoch mafiosi and all those others in the press establishment who pay grovelling homage at the feet of Don Rupioni.

This is the ultimate media hypocrisy. So no change there, then. Don’t Buy The Sun.

Murdoch Anti-Semitism - The Cover-Up

After the Murdoch Sunday Times pulled Kevin Myers’ anti-Semitic rant from its online edition yesterday and the apologies came pouring out from the Baby Shard bunker, there was silence from those out there on the right, not only at News UK, but elsewhere in our free and fearless press. But the questions would not stop coming.
Kevin Myers - should never have written for the Sunday Times

How had Myers even been employed at the paper, given his track record as a bigot, misogynist, Islamophobe and Holocaust denier? How many staff waved the fateful column through? Why was Myers to be the only sacrifice made in order to stave off criticism? What happened to editorial responsibility? How did the editorial process go so wrong?

Worse, how is it that the press which is always ready and waiting to call anti-Semitism, or indeed any form of racism, on others, has such a blind spot about it itself? Such as the Spectator magazine continuing to employ anti-Semite Taki Theodoracopulos, who has been kept on not just by current editor Fraser Nelson, but also by numerous predecessors, including Charles Moore, who stuck with Taki when he was jailed after a drugs bust.

Consider the rest of the bunch who tolerated Taki: Dominic Lawson, Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, and Matthew d’Ancona. Consider also that the Daily Mail got itself into trouble during Paul Dacre’s vicious attack on the late father of then Labour leader Ed Miliband when it talked of “The jealous God of Deuteronomy” and “visiting the sins of the father on the sons”. That, too, was subsequently brushed under the carpet.

But heads never seem to roll when the press gets called out for anti-Semitism. Frank Fitzgibbon, who edits the Sunday Times’ Irish edition, and who is ultimately responsible for Kevin Myers’ article, has merely put out the obligatory hand-wringing statement.
I apologise unreservedly for the offence caused by comments in a column written by Kevin Myers and published today in the Ireland edition of the Sunday Times. It contained views that have caused considerable distress and upset to a number of people … As the editor of the Ireland edition I take full responsibility for this error of judgment. This newspaper abhors antisemitism and did not intend to cause offence to Jewish people”.

But, as yet, no offer of resignation. And the ST’s London editor? “Martin Ivens said the piece should not have been published and later added that Myers would not write again for the Sunday Times Ireland”. He won’t be resigning, either. Nor will any commissioning editors, sub-editors, comment editors, or indeed any editors. Or any other staff.

And, talking of another organisation that will do nothing about Myers’ article, we now know “The Campaign Against Antisemitism announced it would report the paper to the Independent Press Standards Organisation”. IPSO? The sham press regulator that is the same old discredited PCC, er, fluid, in a differently labelled bottle? They will do nothing. They wouldn’t dare. Another of the press’ dirty secrets will be quietly forgotten.

Anti-Semitism is yet another subject on which the press demands action when others do it, but where is does nothing itself. Can you smell hypocrisy?

Nadine Dorries - Boris Pants On Fire

After a disastrous eight years as London’s very occasional Mayor, when tens of millions were sprayed around on unwanted vanity projects, air quality deteriorated alarmingly, property developers and the car lobby were needlessly and cravenly indulged, and the emergency services were cut to the bone, it might have been thought that Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson would have few vocal backers of his time at City Hall.
But that thought would have been misplaced, as Mid-Bedfordshire’s Tory MP (yes, it’s her again) Nadine Dorries has shown. For her, the Bozza years were a thing of wonder, and since he left the Mayor’s office, the capital has become a lawless hell-hole. This is, of course, a steaming pile of weapons grade bullpucky, but Ms Dorries has significant previous when it comes to setting her pants on fire.
Her claim that when she was growing up, her home city of Liverpool “had eight Tory MPs and an all-Tory council” was a proven, flat-out lie. Still, if at first you don’t succeed, well, just suck some more seed, eh? So off she went: “London couple just told me that since Boris left, London has become a scarier city, feel as though they are living in midst of crime wave”. As a regular visitor, that is complete bullshit.
A series of Tweeters told her she was wrong. Others ridiculed her “London couple told me” evidence, so we then got “FIVE Bedfordshire couples told me you were a terrible MP” followed by “Make that 6 … Seven … Eight”. Would the fragrant Nadine get the hint? Sadly, no she wouldn’t: “They also said that the decline since Boris left has been swift in many areas and it's like a driver has taken his hands off the wheel”.
Rectifying Bozza’s cavalier neglect is a huge job, but at least Sadiq Khan has made a start and is treating the Mayoralty as a full time job (which Johnson never did). But now Ms Dorries had a problem: she was being told she was wrong, but needed to spin it to make her critics look guilty. And so it came to pass: “Gosh, too many replies to read but getting the strong impression this tweet just hit a nerve or two!
By now, she was being told in no uncertain terms about the water cannon fiasco, the Garden Bridge fiasco, the cable car fiasco, the litany of cuts, and all the rest. She needed some pro-Bozza evidence. So here it came: “there was a reason for this you polluted air deniers”. The link is to to the London Low Emission Zone. Which was the work of Mayor, er, Ken Livingstone. Which Bozza effectively watered down.
Ms Dorries’ hero cancelled the third phase of the LEZ, as part of his caving in to the motor vehicle lobby. But remember, she’s “reporting only what I'm told by people who live in London whose opinion is as valid as your own”, including claiming that in the 1990s, wearing a mask in London was “the norm”. I was a regular visitor then too, and that is yet more bullshit. But good to see that it’s at least consistent bullshit.
Like the hypocrisy of slagging off Young Dave as a mere “posh boy”, and then swooning over his fellow old Etonian Bozza. And remember, folks, the Tories allowed her to become an MP, choosing her from a shortlist of eleven hopefuls. God only knows what the others were like.

Sunday 30 July 2017

Diane Abbott Riot Smears BUSTED

Some MPs are kept busy by their work; others are kept yet busier by the need to keep tabs on a viciously hostile and deliberately dishonest press. So it is for Hackney North and Stoke Newington MP Diane Abbott, who has to balance her constituency duties with being a Labour front bencher, an occasional media pundit, and fielder of constant efforts by the right-leaning press to demonise her, which is not a manifestation of racism, oh no.
Ms Abbott’s determination, and her patience, was tested to the limit after the recent death of a young black man called Rashan Charles. As the BBC reported, “Rashan Charles, 20, was wrestled to the ground in Dalston, east London, on 22 July, and died about an hour later … Mr Charles was pursued by officers and became ill after trying to swallow an object, the Met has said … He died soon after in hospital”.
Protests followed the death. The BBC again: “On Friday, clashes broke out in Hackney as protesters blocked part of Kingsland Road and set mattresses alight”. The family’s spokesman sought to calm tensions: “We understand your frustration, we understand your anger - don't feel that the family doesn't feel the anger and the frustration too … But what the family knows is taking it to the streets doesn't give you justice … Burning down your own homes, burning down your neighbourhood is not going to give you justice”.
While that statement was being made, standing at the left of the picture and behind the family spokesman was … Diane Abbott. So it was rather obvious that she, at least implicitly, endorsed the call for peaceful protest. This rather obvious message, though, somehow failed to get through to the Sun and the Mail.
So it was that the Murdoch goons told their readers “Diane Abbott DEFENDS rioters who attacked cops with bottles and sparked fires in East London over death of Rashan Charles - with more rampages feared”. The Dacre doggies at the Mail concurred: “Local MP Diane Abbott defends rioters who hurled petrol bombs at Police in Hackney over death of man as he was arrested but calls for calm amid fears of new London riots”.
Did she say that? Well, no she didn’t: this is what she sent the people at Mail Online: “The anger and upset at the death of Rashan Charles in understandable. But Rashan’s family have explicitly spoken out against hostile actions. We must respect their wishes and any protests must be peaceful”. No defence of rioting. At all.
So Ms Abbott’s frustration was understandable: “Today's @MailOnline claims I defended the hurling of petrol bombs at Police! Here's their headline vs what I actually said. I am disgusted … And @TheSun follow suit! Again Me vs the headline. Any unrest in our communities is serious. Not a 'click-bait' game. Report with respect”.
Did the press take that on board? The Sun tried its damnedest not to, as she later observed: “New headline in @TheSun is still misleading. Suggests I condone violence but if you read on and they belatedly acknowledge my call for peace”. So the Murdoch goons are still trying to have their Labour-bashing cake and eat it, then.

Give up the demonisation of Diane Abbott, Sun and Mail people. If it really worked, she wouldn’t have scored over 75% of the popular vote last month. Just a thought.

Dan, Dan The Irish Border Man

As more and more informed voices view the less than totally appealing prospect that is the exit of the UK from the EU, and the thought occurs to them that there might be a more appealing prospect in doing otherwise, so those implacably opposed to the Union have had to step up to the plate to reassure everyone that it’s all going to be OK. This has resulted in yet another foot-in-mouth excursion from Dan, Dan The Oratory Man.
What am I bid for this Anglo-Irish whopper? Any takers?

Hannan has surveyed the potentially serious sticking point that is the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic: snaking for more than 300 miles across mainly open countryside, nowadays crossed and re-crossed by many roads and tracks with no visible border post or other marking, save for the reminder to drivers on main roads that speed limits change from miles to kilometres per hour, or vice versa.
And, as so often, Dan has not allowed the reality of recent history to hinder his utterances, taking to Twitter to proclaim “It would surely be logistically easier to treat the British Isles as what it has always been - a single customs area. Checks only at ports”. And, as Jon Stewart might have said, two things here. One is the dumping on the Republic.
Challenged by Jonn Elledge, Hannan airily declared “Unlikely that the UK will put up customs posts on the land border. Ireland will be free to choose between checks there or at its ports”. Yes, let’s dump the problem outside the UK! I mean, don’t these damned foreigners know their place in the world? And there was more.
Elledge pointed out that the Republic is not exiting the EU, and so is remaining in the Customs Union. Dan took out his crystal ball and duly pontificated “UK will have lower tariffs, and will need no checks on imports from the EU. What happens the other way round is between Brussels and Dublin”. Yes, dump the problem on the Republic.
And the second flaw in the Hannan plan is that the British Isles has not always been a single customs area, as anyone with the most basic knowledge of recent Irish history will know. Shane O’Mara had family who worked for Customs patrolling the border, which had checks enforced along its length from the early 1920s to the early 1990s.
Sasha Clarkson confirmed “Customs points existed between NI & the Republic between 1923 and 1993. #Hannan is offensive to Ireland, *and* too lazy to check his facts!” Dan’s solution to a problem which would be entirely of Britain’s making is simplistic, wrong, dishonest, and ignores the two countries’ often uncomfortable recent past.
One might not have realised this from his sniffy response to Shane O’Mara: “So much pro-EU sentiment on Twitter is wrapped up in open contempt for our country”. And so he had opened mouth and inserted foot in no style at all once more: O’Mara is Irish. So it is plain flat wrong to talk about “our country” in a discussion with him.

Daniel Hannan is perhaps the best hope that the optimist Brexiteers have. On this showing, it’s fortunate that we don’t see too much of the rest of them.

Murdoch Peddles Anti-Semitism

Let me say from the outset; I'm with Bishop Richard Williamson on this. There was no holocaust, (or Holocaust, as my computer software insists) and six million Jews were not murdered by the Third Reich. These two statements of mine are irrefutable truths, yet their utterance could get me thrown in the slammer in half the countries of the EU”. So opined one Kevin Myers in an Irish Independent column back in 2009.
Kevin Myers - Holocaust denial welcome at the Murdoch press

Yes, it could get him thrown in the slammer, but, on the bright side, Holocaust denial could also get him a platform in the Murdoch press to peddle a not unrelated line in hate speech. This is despite Myers having a most unfortunate track record, one which included dropping the Irish Times in the mire when he described the children of single parents as “bastards” as recently as 2005.  He later apologised. But only after causing significant grief.
And for any followers of The Prophet who might feel left out, Myers also has form on that front, asserting last year - in the Murdoch Sunday Times - “I defend my right to express doubts freely about Islam … Most Muslim societies are either a tyranny or racked by violence”. Myers is clearly an equal opportunity bigot.
So it was that Myers waded into the aftermath of revelations about what the BBC pays its “top talent”, which was initially merely patronising: “Sorry, ladies [!] - equal pay has to be earned” read the headline, with the obligatory Beeb bashing sub-heading “The row over presenters’ salaries sums up the dysfunctional BBC”. But there was no dysfunction in the Murdoch press, oh no. And then he went in with both feet.
Presenters in the BBC - Claudia Winkelman and Vanessa Feltz, with whose, no doubt, sterling work I am tragically unacquainted - are Jewish. Good for them. Jews are not generally noted for their insistence on selling their talent for the lowest possible price, which is the most useful measure there is of inveterate, lost-with-all-hands stupidity. I wonder, who are their agents? If they’re the same ones who negotiated the pay for the women on the lower scales, then maybe the latter have found their true value”.
And there you have it - nailed-on anti-Semitism, laced with sneering misogyny. The only imponderable is how the piece got past the Sunday Times’ sub-editors and editors. Either there weren’t any - which, for what is still claimed to be a paper of record, in inexcusable - or it was waved through by them, which is arguably far worse.
Moreover, anti-Semitism from the Murdoch mafiosi is not a new thing: Rupert Murdoch got himself into all sorts of trouble not so long ago when his Twitter attempt to snark at the New York Times - “Why is Jewish owned press so consistently anti-Israel in every crisis?” -  even forced an apology from The Great Man. The gaffe was doubly clumsy: Arthur Sulzberger, at whom it was aimed, was raised as an Episcopalian Christian.

The Murdoch tendency to anti-Semitism all too often gets a free pass. It should not have, and must never do in future. And firing Kevin Myers would be a positive start.

Top Six - July 30

So what’s hot, and what’s not, in the past week’s blogging? Here are the six most popular posts on Zelo Street for the past seven days, counting down in reverse order, because, well, I have domestic clear-up and food prep to do later. So there.
6 Corbyn’s Brexit - We Have To Talk How will Jezza maintain his popularity with younger voters without offering a way out of the Tories’ determined march to the cliff edge and out of the EU?

5 Labour MP Backs White Supremacists Kate Hoey thinks citing Breitbart as a credible news source is fine. It most certainly isn’t.

4 Guido Fawked - IMF Numbers Fail The perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog were caught getting their stats wrong by Jonathan Portes. So rather than ‘fess up and say sorry, they reverted to type - and hurled abuse instead.

3 Charlie Gard - Farage Is A Disgrace Nigel “Thirsty” Farage’s latest paranoid - and totally wrong - LBC live rant got it totally wrong about the Charlie Gard case. Mainly by lying, so no change there, then.

2 Prison Planet - Total History Fail Battersea bedroom dweller Paul Watson got himself in a terrible mess pretending that Roman Britain was not ethnically diverse. Then he fouled up about Islam in Britain. Then he dug himself deeper on mass migration. Idiot.

1 Tommy Robinson’s Sidekick Gets Ubered Tommy’s pet creep Caolan Robertson - the one who hold the mic to make him look important - got recognised by one Uber driver who took exception to his presence and chucked him out of the car. Serves the bigoted cheapskate right.

And that’s the end of another blogtastic week, blog pickers. Not ‘arf!

Saturday 29 July 2017

Uber Sex Attacks - Mail Arrives Late

Back at the beginning of the month, Zelo Street was the first to report the grim news that driver and rider matching service Uber had been the subject of 48 allegations of sexual assault, including rape, had been made against Uber drivers in the year 2016-17. This was a 50% increase on the 32 complaints made during the previous year, the figures being supplied in response to an FoI request made of Transport for London (TfL).
At the time, my information was that Guy Adams of the Daily Mail also had this information, and would be using it in an article to be published the next day, another instalment in the paper’s assault not just on Uber, but the way in which what the Mail described as the “chumocracy” had eased the company’s establishment and growth in London, the playing field not looking at all level to the capital’s black cab drivers.

But article came there none, and it seemed the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre had lost interest in going after Uber. It took the best part of four weeks, and the involvement not of Adams, but Tom Rawstorne, to bring the latest bad news about Uber to the Mail’s readership. “How safe is your Uber? Growing concern as police figures suggest company's drivers are linked to one sex attack in London per week” reads the headline.

The Mail does, though, bring some interesting additions to the known information, including two examples of Uber drivers committing assaults, one of whom was nicked when the woman he tried it on with turned out to be an undercover Police officer. What is also of interest, but tediously predictable, is the Uber excuse note: “these attacks did not take place on a trip booked through our app”. So how did they end up in the cars, then?
Another piece of Uber loophole exploitation has caught the Mail’s eye: “MPs and unions are warning that new drivers are exploiting legislative loopholes to sidestep measures intended to safeguard the public, such as installing CCTV cameras in the back of cabs”. That would be what Uber drivers from out of town are doing in Brighton, which Zelo Street already covered (as well as sleeping in their cars due to being skint).

But what is new, and even more disturbing, is what Steve McNamara of the LTDA has outlined. “Uber drivers often hire the car they work in and have to make £350 to £400 a week before they have earned a penny … Earning £6 or £7 an hour, they have to work four or five days to cover their hire costs, petrol and insurance, so many will go to someone they know and say: ‘You take the car around when I’m not using it’ …  That way, they reduce their costs by a third or a half. But it means anyone could be behind the wheel - you never know who is driving the car”. Uber claims it can’t happen.

And the Mail reveals the most telling of statistics for all those critics of black cab drivers. “During 2015, Transport for London recorded 136 reported offences of rape and sexual assault against drivers of taxis and private hire vehicles in the capital … just 28 licensed drivers ended up in court … Of these, only eight have so far been convicted of sexual assault. None of that number was a black cab driver”.

Good to see the Mail on board at last. But not good that TfL still appears unable, or unwilling, to deal with the problem that is Uber. That has to change.

Abi Wilkinson And The Misogynists

The tendency of some in and around the right-wing press to take quotations out of context in order to make the author look bad is becoming both habitual, and easy to pick up on. And the go-to people for the selective quote, backed by the certainty that their pals out there on the right will pile on and gleefully abuse the chosen target, are the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog.
Abi Wilkinson ((c) Guardian)

The Fawkes massive honed their craft when smearing Jeremy Corbyn’s spinner Seumas Milne over comments he made about the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby, which they heavily edited to make it look as if Milne had downplayed the incident, although he had not. Now, their chosen victim is freelance Abi Wilkinson, who has written a polemic about efforts being made in the USA to repeal part or all of the Obama era health care reforms.
Behold the moral arbiter of the right

Ms Wilkinson’s piece, for the Staggers, is titledThis is no time for civility towards Republicans - even John McCain”, although it is not all about McCain, but about ordinary peoples’ struggles to preserve what health care gains they have made under the previous Presidency. The Fawkes rabble ignores this, and claims that she is purely being nasty to a senior politician who has recently been diagnosed with a brain tumour.
They also ignore her point that, for many across the USA right now, this is literally a life or death issue. But it is the third time in five days that The Great Guido has gone for Ms Wilkinson, and this sudden redirection of anger towards a young woman journalist should worry those who work in the profession. Sadly for some of them, it does not.

Also, seeing anything penned by the Fawkes blog’s newly anointed teaboy Alex Wickham, as I’ve said previously, should cause anyone looking to pass judgment to stop and think. For former MP - Labour MP - Tom Harris, that thought was not allowed to enter. He took the creepy Fawkes obsession at face value and declared “Guido is right about the appalling Abi Wilkinson”. There’s a good honest floor-crosser for you.
Also looking to put the boot in was the Mail on Sunday’s not at all celebrated blues artiste Whinging Dan Hodges, who was suddenly concerned about journalistic standards: “Isn't the real question how did the NS came to publish this rubbish? All I know is when I was writing for the NS there's no way a piece like that would have seen the light of day”.
Hodges knows all about lacking civility and wishing death on others: soon after fetching up at the Northcliffe House bunker, he penned the infamousLabour MUST Kill Vampire Jezza”. And his pals at the Fawkes blog have little room to talk, either: quite apart from Staines’ deep and loving relationship with the falling over water, which has yielded four convictions including two for drinking and driving, his attitude to taking life is also suspect.
How did the MoS come to publish this rubbish?

Staines had no compunctions raising money to kill others, providing they were Commies, you understand. Death squads, human rights abuses, random killing sprees, all were fine with The Great Guido. But when a young woman says something that incurs his displeasure, everyone has to pile in and give her the proverbial Good Going Over.

Staines, Wickham, Harris, Hodges and their leering, sneering pals should give it a rest and say sorry. But they won’t. Because they’re not big enough.

Charlie Gard - The USA Speaks

Charlie Gard, the terminally ill baby whose short life has generated so much attention, has died just before his first birthday. As the BBC has reported, “He suffered from an extremely rare genetic condition causing progressive brain damage and muscle weakness”. Charlie had been moved from Great Ormond Street Hospital to a hospice for his last hours.
Charlie Gard with his parents

Much has been written about the case, and so many of those sounding off have been, at the very least, poorly informed. But what has been said by the British media is as nothing when set alongside the screaming and baying outpourings emanating from the USA, where for so many airing their views, ignorance is that most coveted of merit badges.
Many of those Stateside, and their hangers-on, did not need to debate the niceties of the Charlie Gard case: they knew what killed him, and it wasn’t a rare genetic condition. The brains trust on display included Battersea basement dweller Paul Watson, who concluded “EU death panel claims another victim”. Richard Mills went further: “With socialized healthcare, Charlie Gard was … Under the control of a death panel … Denied access to US care … Told where to die by the gov”. He’s a widely published writer. A stupid one.
Jack Posobiec, another writer, also knew why Charlie died: “UK Death Panel has ruled against Charlie Gard”. The UK has a death panel, and no-one here knew! And there was another culprit, called the Single Payer system - well, you learn something every day. We know this because Herman Cain was on hand to tell “UK single payer healthcare system succeeds in its effort to guarantee the death of Charlie Gard”.
He once put himself forward as a Presidential candidate. And the US medical profession was at it too, Marty Fox (who you can tell as he’s a doctor) claiming “R.I.P. #CharlieGard … Murdered By Single Payer #Government Healthcare … #PoliticalCorrectness Has A Body Count”. Oh, and then there was socialised medicine. Cassandra Fairbanks knew that was A Very Bad Thing: “The Charlie Gard case pretty much shuts down any idea that socialized medicine is a good idea”. Another opinion former. Another well of ignorance.
How about a view from the pulpit? Douglas Wilson is a Church minister, and he was sure Who Done It: “Charlie Gard has passed away, and the death panels of socialized medicine have not”. Elected representatives? Allen West, a former Congressman, asserted “After Charlie Gard, UK doubles down on rationing socialized medicine”. It does? Whatever.

Any more opinion formers willing to do stupid? Grant Kidney, podcaster and video maker, certainly was: “Charlie Gard is dead thanks to the wretched philosophy of socialism. Another baby butchered in the name of Leftist authoritarianism”. And PolitixGal was on hand to dispense the M-Word, too: “SOCIALIZED MEDICINE / GOVT-RUN HEALTHCARE murdered Charlie Gard! This is what Dems want for Americans & their children!
Charlie Gard could not have been saved by any health care system, anywhere on the planet. He was not butchered or murdered. There was no involvement from a “single payer system”. “Socialised medicine” did not affect his condition, and there was no “Death panel”. But there is a high incidence of wilful ignorance on view here.

The USA has, overall, less good health outcomes than the UK, which gets those better outcomes for a fraction of the cost. We need no lectures from the Stateside stupid.