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What the alt-right are privately saying about their “important work” in Oughterard

Mainstream media in Ireland continue to report on the protests in Oughterard without referencing the involvement of leading hard-right/alt-right activists, who are quite clearly engaged in a national campaign of fear-mongering, rabble-rousing, and local-issue entryism.

I wrote before the weekend about the overlap between organisers of the public meeting in Oughterard and some well known alt-right Facebook groups. These groups continue to discuss their campaign — and vent their racism — in private. That said, not even so-called ‘closed’ Facebook groups are leak-proof, and several screenshots of their discussions have been emerging online.

Many of them have been posted on Twitter. What follows here is a small selection posted by @LeahNiD. Be sure to follow Leah for regular updates; she does some really amazing work. (In most cases, I have cropped the images and pixellated identifying details; you can click through for the originals.)

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Here, for example, an alt-right campaigner is seen congratulating their comrades for the “important work” they did in Oughterard, and encouraging them to now turn their attention to Kildare, where another Direct Provision centre is planned:

importantworkx

Note: “…and other forms of migrant centres.” (Source: @LeahNiD)

As I mentioned on Friday, these alt-right activitists are not from Oughterard at all, but are nonetheless successfully promoting themselves as “local campaigners”.

They have even encouraged protesters in Oughterard to don yellow high-vis vests when protesting against the Direct Provision centre. I very much doubt that most people in the town are aware that high-vis vests are a favoured symbol of Ireland’s alt-right fascist movement.

high viz

“Please wear Hi-Vis vest” (Source: @EamonnVIDF)

They have now changed the name of their Facebook group from ‘Stop Connemara Gateway Hotel Direct Provision Centre‘ to ‘Oughterard says NO to Inhumane Direct Provision centre.‘ This, presumably, is an opportunistic effort to hide behind mainstream concerns about the asylum system. The members include several prominent alt-right activists and persons affiliated with anti-immigration campaigns.

Among the group’s moderators is a prominent pro-life activist (not unusual for Ireland’s alt-right brigade) and a man named in media reports as a local organiser, but whose LinkedIn profile suggests is based in London.

This is him talking about how Brazilian migrants are different to African ones (spoiler: he believes they are good at soccer):

niceBraziliansx

Source: @LeahNiD

Remember, one of the alleged problems with the proposed Direct Provision centre is that it would put pressure on local services, such as schools and healthcare. Another is that claim that the Direct Provision system is “inhumane”.

However, remarks about how “nice” it would be to have Brazilian immigrants instead (or, for that matter, “Christians fleeing from ISIS“), show us that the anxieties here have little to do with the logistics of local services or the morality of the Direct Provision system.

(And as one Oughterard resident, a mathematics professor, has noted, Galway County Council recently announced a plan to build 157 houses just south of Oughterard, and a further 13 houses at Claremont, Oughterard. Neither of these developments provoked public meetings or protests about the risks of sudden local population growth.)

As I wrote on Friday, the people of Oughterard are being played. They are being manipulated and exploited by campaigners with some very unsavoury ulterior motives, who make explicit efforts to keep their true views hidden within private closed Facebook groups.

Views such as the following:

robhousesx

Source: @LiahNiD

Here is another, largely along the same lines:

three xxx

Source: @LiahNiD

And another, although this one is considerably more concise:

three xxx

Source: @LiahNiD

Clearly, however, this group has always been conscious of the fact that uncensored racism is not a good look for a protest movement. In advance of Wednesday’s meeting, they discussed strategy. Here someone advises that the group should tone down its “negative volatile emotions” because “you will not win any argument on racist remarks

three xxx

Source: @LiahNiD

In other words, the line taken at Wednesday’s meeting was pre-planned, and calculated to deflect.

These people came to Oughterard to cause a specific kind of trouble.

They know what they are doing. And they’re good at it.

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That said, it should be no surprise that these folks choose to conduct their discussions in private, keeping their Facebook group ‘closed’ to the general public.

We should be thankful for people like @LiahNiD for exposing their activities.

But if these screenshots, and several others like them, are circulating on Twitter, then how come our mainstream media appear unaware of their existence? 

The people of Oughterard surely deserve better than this…

hopkins2

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>>Read next: Fact-checking the racists: A look at the psychological approach of Ireland’s alt-right

I guess some core competencies are just more core than others

From the letters page of The Economist:

A bridge too far

Bartleby has an unerring ability to detect the nonsense emanating from HR (July 13th). At my job operating a drawbridge I am expected to set performance goals relating to “core competencies.” These include building relationships, oriented outcomes, creativity and innovation. Curiously, they do not include safely operating the 900-tonne piece of mechanical infrastructure entrusted to my care. At my annual review, learning agility is defined in terms of “an awareness of changing workplace trends”. That such skills are valued more highly than not crushing pedestrians says something.
KRISTIAN WILLIAMS
Portland, Oregon

(The writer has a blog. Go check it out.)

Tantalisingly, we are not told whether he actually succeeded in meeting his performance goals.

Give him a raise, I say.

Halloween MRI Special: Guts, Brain, Skeleton, etc (in fact, *my* guts, brain, skeleton, etc)

(From the archives)

Welcome. Mwa-hah-hah-hah-hah-ha!

Yes, it’s Halloween, a sort of Beta Christmas. And as is typical, local streets and shops are festooned with images of witches, pumpkins, ghosts, and — of course — skeletons. Because skeletons are scary, you see.

In an age of austerity, it is good to consider ways of cutting out unnecessary expenditure. With this in mind, I offer you here some home-grown guts and gore: namely, some MRI images of my own innards, all pimped up GIF-wise for your entertainment.

Get prepared…

…to be SCARED!

glOm (makeGIF)

For the especially confused, this is my chest and neck

You see? It’s true. I have no heart.

This one gives a side-on view of the above. Again, no heart:

glOI (makeGIF)

Somewhere in there are some prolapsed discs

And this last one’s my fave. It features pretty good detail on my upper spine, spinal cord, brain stem, and cerebellum:

glOp (makeGIF)

That beauty of a cerebellum is why I’ve such excellent
fine-motor co-ordinitoanjkbkjb

So what have we learned from all this? Well, MRI scans offer some pretty clear images of soft tissue inside the body, all by beaming some magnetic waves in there and measuring what happens (see here for more). Secondly, try to avoid growing old, if at all possible — your proneness to semi-random muscle-tears and spinal disc herniation just escalates. And thirdly, GIFs are fun, fun, fun!

Compliments of the season to you all…

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