Fella lives in tree…Mum hates on Nicola Sturgeon?!?


We’ve currently got an Englishman living up a tree to save his land from extreme energy and my dear old Mum’s got her hate on for our kid Nicola Sturgeon and both of those things need to stop right now!!!

Being part Jute upon a recent trip down South to my Southern heimat I found my sweet hearted Ma bad mouthing the female Ghandi of our time, Nicola Sturgeon?!?

Here’s what’s happened.

My Pops is an ex Shop Steward. He was left wing. He always bought the Mirror and the Mail to get a balanced view. A while back, for whatever reason, he stopped buying the Mirror, he’s in his mid 70’s now and perhaps it’s right what they say about “the older you get the more right wing you become”. So the old fella has had nothing but reading the Mail for a few years now. Factor in also that my folks are of that generation who believe that the BBC is some form of sanctified distributor of truth and you have what’s been happening to millions of my fellow Engerlanders. They really have done the full job on these people and I think that it’s important that our Scottish brothers and sisters understand that. I know that you ken anyway because you obviously had the whole BBC/msm “Project Fear” experience and are fully wise to the corruption of it all but it’s so vitally important that we properly address this idiotic nose lead mind set and challenge the crap out of it. If I use that experience with my folks as a litmus test I think that we’ve got our work cut out but descending into any more cross border fear and loathing nonsense isn’t an option. Anyone with even a brief understanding of the violent past relationship between England and Scotland would stow that idiocy immediately but we live in times of a beast in its death throes and it’ll spit poison and take down whoever it can with it.

Now the good news. Many many English have been through a 5 year boot camp with these Tory weirdos. There are a MULTITUDE of battling grassroots organisations all over the place.

This brings me back to our lad up a tree.

We’ve fought fracking to a virtual standstill in England and have been doing for a number of years now. Frack Free Lancashire is one of the most successful grassroots organisations that the North West has probably seen since the days of The Chartists or Suffragettes and organisations like Frack Free Ryedale and Frack Free Nottinghamshire are just about to come into their own. We’ve always opposed fracking because, well, it’s really crap..but we’ve always also championed a better way and most importantly loads of English young’ins are involved in what is essentially family based community resistance so the future’s very bright.


Frack Free Notts this past weekend

There are indeed many of my fellow English that will swallow any old bilge, there always will be in any land, and we haven’t had the two years intense political engagement that Scots have had but what we lack in over arching political organisation we make up for in young ballsy getting stuck in opposition to things that are patently wrong. Combine Scottish grassroots organisation with English community action networks and that’d be quite the brew.

In the meantime we’ve got Gary living up a tree at a site where the frackers iGas want to drill for coal bed methane..a handful of metres from the sacred River Mersey and a few hundred yards from Chris Packham’s fave Nature Reserve, Woolston Eyes. Our Gary’s not having that, or at least he’s not having that until he’s gained more local awareness of what’s happening at Warrington or laid a couple of eggs in his tree nest. Gary doesn’t want to live in a tree, he’s not a bird, he’s got a perfectly nice home just down the road that doesn’t sway like HMS Victory’s mast in a gale. He doesn’t want camera crews filming him with food being hoisted up to him, he’s not some form of weird human addition to Springwatch, although he wouldn’t turn down a visit from Michaela Strachan. What Gary wants to do is to be able to tell his story…to anyone that will listen…he’s up a tree…there’s not a lot on up there….

This story will be subject to the usual national hush hush main stream media blackout that we’ve always had with the nationally significant process called fracking but we’ve got our own media now haven’t we……

DM @MancunianSpring on Twitter for a chinwag with our lad up a tree…he’s given us his phone number hehe #SaveWoolstonEyes

Author: Manciavelli

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring


I did sit my folks down and over a 3 hour period put them right on Nicola and how the Scots don’t really want to fashion cabers out of Westminster Hall woodwork and toss them around Parliament Green..just yet 🙂


The best election result that a free North could wish for

I’ve taken this long to comment upon the election because I’ve just gotten up off the floor from that baseball bat in the nads of an exit poll. That exit poll moment felt akin to going downstairs on Christmas morning to find David Cameron in a Santa outfit taking a leak all over your presents.

Any devastation felt from a virtual annihilation of the “left” in Westminster was soon tempered by an election result that can only be described as a wet dream for anybody whose aspirations are for an autonomous North of England.

There will most likely never be another election that greater highlights the tricolour land that we live in with a blue Tory South, a red Labour North and a yellow “Nationalist” Scotland. The Scots are now virtually in open revolt following the perpetual grinding existence of living under an administrative flavour that they not only dislike but positively loath. Substitute Scotland with England above the Humber/Mersey line and the story is not that different. The North routinely votes left and gets saddled with right and all of the shocking North/South disparities in mortality rates, infrastructure spending etc apply just as much to the North as they do to Scotland, in fact the North of England has way more in common with Scotland that it’s ever had with the South.

There will also probably never be another election that greater highlights how thoroughly broken our electoral system is. It MUST be broken when I’m feeling sorry for millions of right wing swivel eyed UKIP loons who are now only represented by one single solitary steaming throwback. At least our system is fairly bollocks with over 1 million people who are actually concerned about the Planet that we live on being represented by a single solitary really nice Lady in Brighton. The fact of the matter is that our “democracy” has never been shown to be more unbalanced and more unrepresentative since the days of the “Rotten Boroughs” when an uninhabited hill in Wiltshire was represented by two MP’s, one of them a Donkey called Cyril.

So where do we go from here? To freedom is where we go, dragged by the short and curlies by the Scots.

My Grandfather used to tell me about the Scots when he was fighting the Afrika Corps in North Africa. He said that when he heard the bagpipes of the 51st Highland Division drifting across the desert it was nothing short of feeling that the Spartans had turned up and it used to lift the hearts of every man around him. Isn’t it just truly beautiful that those bagpipes are sounding again, but this time for peace, freedom and true democracy.

Many of my fellow Engerlanders seem to be horrendously tone deaf though buying into the corrupted main stream media’s fumbling and laughable interpretation of what exactly the SNP is. There’s only one group of people on this Planet who know exactly what the SNP is and that’s the Scots. The main stream media has an awful lot of trouble dealing with people who are politically aware. How on Earth can they ever cope with an entire nation of folk who have been on a two year intensive political awareness course. The simple answer is that they can’t. Every single msm interpretation of the SNP is met with howls of laughter and derision from the glens. The Scots are the establishment’s worst nightmare, switched on, savvy, super pissed off and with the scent of blood in their nostrils. They’ve even created a whole new kind of “Nationalism” which is confusing the establishment even more, it’s even lead to me put the word in inverted commas as I’m not entirely sure myself but it would appear that the Scots have finally cracked it as only the Scots could. They’ve perfected a “Civic Nationalism” of deep community pride with self effacement and pragmatism which is probably the most perfectly British version of “Nationalism” that says “I’m Scots and I’m dead proud of that but that doesn’t mean that I think that I’m superior to any other beggar”. The clean bill of health that this version of “Nationalism” has been given is reflected in diehard Socialists like Tommy Sheridan signing up to the SNP project and I swear that if Jimmy Reid was alive this past Friday morning he’d have cried his one World Socialist heart out in joy.

It’s not surprising that the msm are clueless about the Scottish Revolution but I ask for patience (which we generally get) from my Scottish brothers and sisters when it comes to my fellow English. When it comes to political awareness we’re now 2 years behind you. If we were more politically advanced here’s what would happen post the SNP 56.

Northern England secessionists would be thoroughly organised with a background of hundreds of grassroots meetings. Following the defeat of fracking in the North (had to fit that in) those Northern secessionists would now be organising a sit down with key SNP members. That meeting would probably be held in Berwick, a place that not only confirms our common geographical bonds but also reminds us of a much darker past when Tory/English shit stirring had us doing horrendous and unforgivable things to each other along the border and beyond that can never ever happen again. At that meeting the Scots and the folk of the North would be figuring out how we could go it alone together. How a free nation of Scotland could perhaps loosely federate with a free Northumbria to provide a beacon of social justice that would be an example to the entire World. How we could finally replace the industrial revolution with a social justice revolution and instead of us feeling slightly guilty for providing the ultimate Planet trashing Capitalist tools that folk slaved and died under, we could feel proud for establishing a system that truly is the “Mother of all democracies”.

Sadly we don’t currently have the Northern secessionist Statesmen and Women that we need but it’s vitally important to move quickly in reaching out to the Scots. My own personal preference would be the holding of a Northern Peoples Constitutional Congress over a period of a few months in a Northern City or perhaps a “road show” basis after all, since the Scots killed the Union this is something that the entire UK is going to have to do at some point anyway. The most important thing is that we don’t fall for the establishment’s attempts to stir up hatred between the Scottish and English which we’ve all just had a sickening taste of in the election run up. The good news is that the Scots see straight through such poison and now have a flourishing independent media scene to expose the msm lies and attempted stitch ups perfectly exampled by the #FrenchGate smear attempt on Nicola Sturgeon that was released in the morning, discredited in the afternoon and backtracked from by the very same evening. Once again though we just don’t have that kind of organisation and cohesion in England and it’s been sadly noticeable that many ill informed English have been buying into the Scottish hate and we must all do everything that we can to build closer ties with the Scottish people rather than fall foul of the establishments shoddy attempts at “divide and rule”. Sadly these people don’t seem to know their British history or are paying scant regard to just how dangerous that is and that’s why we must fight it with all of our worth.

If we can avoid the “divide and rule” what we’re left with is a remarkable opportunity for the North of England that completely transcends any despair felt from a horrendous election result for the left and social progressives. We have a chance to completely renegotiate our relationship with a thoroughly broken Westminster, reshape our failed democracy and therein lies the real revolution.

Author: Smokin’ Joe Brotherton

Follow on Twitter@MancunianSpring


#TakeUsWithYouScotland petition receives thousands of signatures…

…and this just in from a Manchester Evening News piece about the petition…

An autonomous North England takes a huge step forward


A seismic shift in Northern politics is taking place and fast gaining momentum with the formation of the brand new Northern Party. The party has been formed by folk from across the political spectrum which is probably the best reflection that the old politics just isn’t working for the North and the party will be trying to rectify this by pushing for autonomy for the region including a complete reboot of democratic systems.

There’s a saying that you either do politics or you have politics done to you and it would appear that many people in the North are over having politics done to them. The most pertinent example of this is fracking with vast swathes of the trans Pennine Bowland shale formation due to be turned into a toxic frackfield with no mandate from the people whatsoever and in most cases completely against their will. The Northern Party’s policy on fracking is that it should only proceed if the people of the North want it to. This only sounds eminently simplistic and obvious because of the huge democratic deficit that people currently suffer under and is the perfect example of why there is a demand for such decisions to be taken locally rather than have a cabal of oil and gas industry captured politicians impose an “ultrahazardous” industry upon the North from a thoroughly detached Westminster even though we have Doctors screaming out for the “inherently risky” process to be banned.

This isn’t the only ongoing example of such an appalling lack of democracy bordering on totalitarianism. In November of last year Chancellor George Osborne flounced into town to inform the people of Greater Manchester that we are going to have a Mayor imposed upon us even though we decisively voted against having a Mayor in 2012 and that we would have absolutely no say in the matter this time around?!? It didn’t end there. Earlier this year we were subsequently told that the Greater Manchester NHS budget would be devolved as part of the “deal” effectively ending the “national” part of the health service. All of this has been arranged behind closed doors with minimal to no public consultation. This is precisely the kind of situation that the new Northern Party will be fighting to put an end to.

We could spend pages remarking upon the unconscionable and never ending disparities between the North and the South but they are already throughly well documented. The fact that if you happen to be born 300 miles to the South you will most likely live an extra 10 years, experience a much lesser degree of infant mortality and have orders of magnitude more infrastructure spending on your behalf. The fact that we don’t have to repeat these things is thoroughly depressing, the fact that nothing has ever been done about such a morally repugnant state of affairs, more so.

The North is now fighting back and when viewed in the context of a mass political awakening sweeping down from the Scottish highlands it could be time to flush the Xanax down the toilet as the people of the North are finally starting to “do politics”. The Scots have been asked the question regarding the Union and the answer is that it will inevitably be breaking up on the basis of Scottish voter demographics alone with older Unionists dying off every day being replaced by younger advocates of independence. Perhaps more importantly than this almost half of an entire nation who we are supposed to be in partnership and harmony with have openly and forcefully declared that they are sick and tired of the current broken model of Westminster politics…and its not just the Scots that think this.

Both Yorkshire and the North East are currently experiencing a boom in devolution movements. Now Lancashire has finally joined the party and although there will be some who may have concerns over the splitting of Northern devolution votes the most important thing is that the people of the region are now eminently more politically active and will no doubt be bright enough and definitely motivated enough to be able to thrash out a way forward and as Westminster quite literally crumbles into the Thames a new form of politics is already taking its place.

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring

“DevoManc” NHS Protest 29th March


Sunday 29th March 2015 will see the people of Greater Manchester rallying to the defence of the NHS and demanding a say in their own region’s devolution deal. It is perhaps worth repeating that again, because at first it sounds quite unbelievable…demanding a say in their own region’s devolution deal!?!

We have already covered the lack of public consultation endemic within the “DevoManc” #dodgydeal and that would be enough to exercise the most politically moribund folk but now George Osborne and his troupe of performing local Councillors have gone and supremely pissed off legions of NHS protectors?!?

Dr David Wrigley as well as remarking on the mind melting lack of democracy involved within “DevoManc” said“Local patient groups, local GPs, local NHS staff, local MPs, national medical organisations and patient groups need to be all over this deal like a rash”…the breaking up of the NHS…in the birthplace of the NHS?!…you’d think so….

Herr Osborne seems to have just raised the border barrier of the NHS Sudetenland and marched his Panzer army of Labour apparatchiks straight into Czechoslovakia. This bizarre throwback move will be complete when we have our new fat little Oberbürgermeister installed who will no doubt be sporting jodhpurs and semi ironic lisp.

The people of Manchester are still coming to terms with the new realpolitik of how things are done these days, how pet projects are just dreamt up amongst yer mates and arbitrarily imposed upon 2.7 million people with no consultation. It’s lead to a renaissance of ideas within Greater Manchesters 10 boroughs such as Potty Pete of Levenshulme declaring the joint an independent Saxon fiefdom with tribute to be paid by all passengers on the 192 who shall journey forth through the boundaries. You are now no longer allowed to enter Bolton unless you are dressed as a Pirate, and according to a pronouncement by Lord Hosepipe Fran of Wigan the NHS won’t just be devolved to the region, each house will be allocated a Doctor with a crash team stationed in every corner shop. The Greater Manchester populace are currently spiralling off into new realms of “they’re makin’ it up as they go along’isms”.

So the folk of Greater Manchester are faced with two choices in this situation. To either shout yourself half crazy in your own car or to fight.

Manchester is the same city that recently hosted the largest protest in its illustrious and rebellious history in defence of the NHS so it was only ever going to be FIGHT!!!

Author: Smokin’ Joe Brotherton

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring



PETITION demanding that the people of Greater Manchester have a say on “DevoManc”

“DevoManc” explained to a space visitor


Picture the scene. You open your Sunday newspaper to discover that a cabal of Westminster MP’s have decided that from now on the UK will be run on a Presidential system, that an interim President chosen from the “political elites” would be installed any day now but we might be able to vote on a President in 2017.  After choking on your Cornflakes and passing on to the sports section you could reflect that this is not dissimilar to what has happened to the 2.7 million inhabitants of Greater Manchester. The situation becomes even more democratically surreal when you consider that Mancunians were polled about having a Mayor in 2012 and said ta very much but you’re all right.

The background to this rather bizarre situation is as follows. In a moment of back of a fag packet policy panic George Osbourne blew into Manchester all full of jobs, growth and “Northern Powerhouse” soon after the Scottish independence vote in November of last year and he herded together a group of local Labour Party council bigwigs to sign off on a package conjured up by their right wing think tank, ResPublica, as “Devo Manc”.

We were told that Greater Manchester was to become some form of post renaissance neo City state rather like Venice with less canals but with a Doge installed. This was presented as such a done deal that George pre-empted calls for a referendum on the matter by saying that there would be no referendum on the matter. One could also consider this deal as more than done as the powers that be are obviously fully aware that we have a general election just around the corner and yet they’re not even prepared to allow the matter space on a ballot paper that will already be being printed.

So why the fait a compli and perhaps more importantly why is this being done with zero public consultation or indeed any referral to the people whatsoever? The simple answer is that following the Scottish referendum “NOT YET” vote the political establishment fully understand that the break up of the Union is an inescapable inevitability and they want the break up to be on their terms, what you might refer to as a controlled demolition. Following David Cameron’s rather odd dash to become a separatist the very next morning after the Scottish vote by inexplicably killing the Union by announcing “English votes for English laws” he fired the starting pistol for devolution right into his own foot.

So where do we go from here and how do we escape the clutches of an establishment devolution model attempting to maintain as much of the status quo as possible with the illusion of more local powers?

In Greater Manchester people have been organising since very early December. Folk from the broadest church of political affiliations gathered in central Manchester to establish The Greater Manchester Referendum Campaign to demand that the people of Greater Manchester have a say on whether they want a Mayor or not. An online petition has been set up but more importantly, “pile in” petition signings have been organised in all of Greater Manchester’s 10 boroughs since early January. On Sunday 15th February GMRC members conducted a mass poll and survey of Sir Richard Leese’s Crumpsall constituency in North Manchester, Leese being one of the main architects of “Devo Manc” and the leader of Manchester City Council.

It wasn’t surprising that the vast majority of Crumpsall citizens had no idea that “Devo Manc” was happening let alone the fact that they are soon to have a Mayor enforced upon them but perhaps what was surprising and somewhat heartening was that in answer to the question, “would you prefer a wider devolution incorporating the North West” the answer was an almost 80% YES.

Probably the most interesting development in this fast moving story is the arrangement of “Assemblies for Democracy” with one being held in Manchester Friends Meeting House 18th April. Momentum is fast growing for not only a rejection of “Devo Manc” but the securing of devolution on the peoples terms rather than the establishments. Another extremely interesting twist to this story are the contacts that are being made between North West advocates of a people lead devolution and Scottish independence groups and other devolution/independence groups from around the UK such as Yorkshire, Wales and Cornwall.
It is also interesting that the drive for regional devolution is becoming a common purpose at a variety of levels within society with groups as diverse as Campaign for the North, the CBI and grassroots organisations all pulling in a similar direction and when you combine this with the burgeoning independent media scene and citizen use of social media the future looks intriguing.

It is noteworthy that Paul Salveson is calling for a Northern Assembly fed by assemblies from across the region which is no doubt urgently needed. Perhaps the bigger question is, should there not be a call for a UK wide peoples assembly to settle this matter on a national basis and attempt to forge a new way for us all to live together on these islands? Doesn’t it just happen to be the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta this June?

Author: Smokin’ Joe Brotherton

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring

From an article published in The Chartist Magazine and since publication in this fast moving story an announcement has been made that all NHS spending will be devolved to Greater Manchester

“DevoManc” NHS chaos

It started with a leak, led to blind panic in the BBC news studio and now interest in “DevoManc” is hitting new levels as folk discover that the nationally cherished NHS is no longer national.

The shock announcement, leaked on Tuesday 24th February in the Manchester Evening News, was that the £6 billion NHS budget for Greater Manchester is to be handed over by George Osborne to the new, as yet unnamed, “interim” Mayor, perhaps in the form of a huge charidee-style plastic cheque or banknotes stuffed inside a nice card?

This deal has more than a soupcon of dodginess about it so, the question is why are Greater Manchesters’ Labour Council leaders cosying up to Gideon, having “all in it together” photos in what any intelligent observer might see as lining up to be Westminster fall guys and, metaphorically, punching themselves in the face, especially when Labours’ NHS Tzar, Andy Burnham appears to be completely opposed to this dodgy deal?

On Wednesday 25th February when the BBC finally caught up with the story there was a hurried accoutrement of establishment propaganda served up, complete with a guest cheer-leading appearance from, none other than, you guessed it? The un-elected, unrepresentative, Respublica gobshyte who has no authority to speak on behalf of the people of Greater Manchester and who no Mancunian has ever heard of, Phil Blond.

All of this took place on the same day that £45 million of cuts were voted through by “DevoManc” signatory, highly unpopular Salford Mayor, Ian Stewart, and Salford Labour Council, who, paradoxically, sat under a sign that read “salus populi suprema lex” – the welfare of the people is the highest law!

The announcement about the NHS budget drew swift responses with Twitter lighting up with bemused and angry NHS advocates, the most prescient comment coming from a Greater Manchester Consultant Surgeon…


After the initial post leak chaos it was no great shock that the main stream media inevitably swung in behind the deal as the entire “Devo Manc” package has been subject to the usual full court press of positive media propaganda. It was therefore not surprising, but no less disturbing, that writers such as Simon Jenkins of The Guardian completely ignored the appalling lack of democracy in the situation?! Indeed, even academics such as Manchester University’s Iain Deas paid scant regard to the fact that major decisions regarding the lives of over 2.5 million Greater Manchester residents have been subject to zero public consultation.

Credible analysis came from The Spectator and New Statesman, and then, somewhat bizarrely a statement came from Andy Burnham about “Swiss cheese”?!

Salford Lad, a local, commented “when Andy Burnham started going on with himself about Swiss cheese, I thought it was the top tax dodging bank account offered at HSBC! Us Salfordians are fed up with smoke and mirrors, cuts and dodgy deals, what we need in Greater Manchester is a real deal for the people”

With “DevoManc” looking more and more like a leaky rudderless ship with the hapless Captain Gideon causing chaos at every tack it will be fascinating to see if the Good Ship Mancunian Freedom overtakes it with a true people led devolution..watch this space…

Author: Karl Sparks

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring



Petition demanding that the people of Greater Manchester have a say on “Devo Manc”


Statement from National Health Action Party co-leader Dr Clive Peedell on NHS Devolution in Manchester


Campaign For The North blog, “Trust Osborne At Your Peril”

Its kinda like the West Wing meets Corrie


Our new Greater Manchester Mayor could be here any day now, nobody is quite sure. It could be a man or a woman but nobody knows.

There’s much speculation regarding the new Mayors mode of arrival into his or her new Mayoral fiefdom. Some have suggested the possibility of the use of some form of Popemobile type vehicle to transport their Mayoralness around the 10 boroughs occasionally stopping to kiss babies. With the appointment of the leader of this new City State consideration has been given to the possibility of the Mayor being transported down the Manchester Ship Canal in a Greek galley rowed by Persian slaves. Sports fans have been questioning whether the Mayor will be unveiled in a new Manchester United diamond formation whilst soap fans have speculated on a Coronation Street appearance probably as part of a tram crash spectacular when it turns out that the Mayor was driving the tram with a head full of mushrooms.

The most politically canny suggestion of the mode of our new Gauleiters arrival came from an ex Salford Docker who, with typically irreverent docks humour, proffered that the new Mayor may well be parachuted into Manchester ala Rudolf Hess, the high ranking Nazi Party member who was parachuted in to Scotland in WWII only to get banged up in the Tower of London. Comparisons with Nazis could be considered harsh, but not necessarily when top political blog “House of Cards” refer to the Greater Manchester Mayor imposition as an “affront to democracy” indeed the whole region could right now be on the verge of being saddled with a gold fringed epaulette sporting military uniformed type with a name like Noriega or Galtieri with right wing death squads roaming the streets of Swinton within weeks.

Mancunian Spring will continue to report on this rolling civic car crash for interested parties such as the poor limbo suspended commemorative Mayor mug manufacturers.

Author: Smokin’ Joe Brotherton

Follow on Twitter @MancunianSpring


Rumours abound since John Prescott’s resurfacing on the national political scene that he could be being lined up for Manc Mayor…and…the political state of Ukraine means that there’s currently a European “hard man” going spare in Viktor Yanukovych