Saturday, 30 October 2010

Admit You're Shit

Guest Post by Morbid Symptoms

In considering the vexed question of possible fascist involvement in the mid-1980s anarcho-punk scene, one person in particular needs to be considered. John ‘Weeny’ Cato was the lead singer in AYS (or ‘Admit You’re Shit’) - a fairly obscure London-based band, but one highly-rated by scene insiders. He was also a close personal friend of arguably the most influential figure in London anarcho-punk at that time. Yet within a few years he was to become a prominent figure in some of the most notorious UK neo-Nazi circles. Is this case the smoking gun of attempted far right infiltration of anarcho-punk, or of an early effort at fascist Third Positionist led 'convergence' with historically non-fascist anti-establishment forces? Not quite, but it does pose some interesting questions.

John Cato is not your run of the mill punk who had a youthful flirtation with racism. By his own account, he is a life-long National Socialist. During the 1990s, he was a prominent ideologue in Combat 18, the wannabe paramilitary group blamed for violent attacks on its opponents before it imploded in a murderous feud. Cato's particular contribution was his apparent enthusiasm for the US Nazi William Pierce, whose ideas famously influenced Timothy McVeigh to murder 168 people in the 1995 Oaklahoma Bombing. Cato drew on Pierce's ideas in his writings for C18-linked publications, as summarized by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke:
"In The Order, the magazine named after the US terrorist group, editor John Cato paid fulsome tribute to its martyred leader, Robert Jay Mathews. It quoted Mathews's "declaration of war" against a "Jewish controlled mongrelized society, which is depriving White Aryans of their existence and homeland'...  In the pages of Putsch, Cato exults in Pierce's advocacy of individual acts of violence against blacks and Jews. After fleeing from Kent to Spalding in Lincolnshire, Cato started a new magazine, The Oak, which reprinted many of Pierce's articles. Paul Jeffries set up Life Rune Books in Leeds as the UK distributor for William Pierce's National Alliance. In June 1994 Cato and Jeffries formed the National Socialist Alliance as a federation of C18, several rebel BNSM sections with their magazines Sigrun and Europe Awake, and the Blood and Honour groups in a British version of Pierce's American organisation." [NGC]

But at the time The Order were launching their short lived race war in the US, including killing the Jewish radio presenter Alan Berg in 1984, Cato was hanging round squats in London with a load of punks, anarchists and animal liberationists. Just the kind of ‘race traitors’ who William Pierce’s fantasy warriors in his novel The Turner Diaries would wipe out without a second thought.

AYS formed in mid-1984, and played their first gig at the Metropolitan in Farringdon in October of that year. They split up later in 1986, having released the 7” EP Expect No Mercy (1985) and the 12" Someplace Special (1986). In 2004 Mortarhate re- released Someplace Special with six bonus tracks

Cato was apparently involved with the British Movement before being in the band. The BM’s membership was dominated by racist boneheads, famous for launching violent attacks at punk gigs, so it would have been quite a move from this to fronting a band playing just the kind of gigs that his former associates sought to disrupt. Nevertheless he now claims to have been a hardcore racist all along. In an interview published in 2006, Cato declared: ‘“Ask me if I’m racist now, and was I back then? And I’ll tell you, fucking right I am! And damn right I was back then too. Like I said I haven’t changed in  twenty years”.

If this is true, it was not something that seemed to feature in the band’s activities. At the time AYS were playing, there was a scene of explicitly racist punk bands like Skrewdriver playing White Noise / Rock Against Communism gigs for the converted. AYS steered clear of this and seemed to have played live exclusively on the anarcho-punk/squat gig circuit, in venues like the Ambulance Station on the Old Kent Road in London.

Equally the band's lyrics don't seem to reflect any particular extreme right-wing agenda. Their stance, like their hard and fast sound, seems to have been influenced by US hardcore bands.  Indeed their first EP included a cover of Minor Threat's In my Eyes, and Cato says that he was in touch with singer Ian MacKaye by phone, letter and occasionally in person during that period. There’s plenty of cynicism, nihilism and rage but very little in the way of explicit political comment in their output, as shown by their song titles - Expect No Mercy ('don't fuck with me'), Keep your mouth shut, You're just a jerk… AYS clearly didn’t buy into the predominant anarchist protest politics of the bands they played alongside, but neither did they seem to articulate an alternative political viewpoint.

In short, Cato doesn't seem to have used AYS as a platform tor spout fascist ideas, or to try and link up racist and anarcho-punk music scenes. If he did hold racist views at the time he seems to have kept them to himself, so it could be argued that they are immaterial to his involvement in punk.

With hindsight it is possible to find a few clues that could be taken as evidence of fascist sympathies. Most obvious is the fact that on the sleeve of the band's debut EP, Expect No Mercy - If You Cross Your Real Friends (1985) on Mortarhate, there is a cross in a circle symbol. The Celtic Cross is not an exclusively fascist symbol, but it was the main symbol of the British Movement. But many people who came across Cato at the time, such as bands who played with AYS, seem to have been both unaware of any dubious leanings and horrified by his later development (see for instance comments by Nic from Napalm Death at Kill Your Pet Puppy). I saw AYS play myself and went to lots of anarcho-punk gigs, but never heard a whisper about Cato and Fascism.

It is of course possible that Cato has exaggerated the consistency of his views over his lifetime. After all if it is embarrassing for anarchists to admit that they had a Nazi in their midst, it is equally embarrassing for a figure like Cato to admit to hanging around with a bunch of vegan pacifists. A charitable interpretation might be that after a teenage involvement with the British Movement (which fell apart in 1983), Cato moved away from the far right before re-engaging with them in the early 1990s.

If Cato did hold extreme right views at the time, it certainly wasn't widely known, but then again it is hard to believe that it would not have been known to those closest to him, such as band-mates and personal friends. Which brings us on to Colin Jerwood, lead singer with Conflict. Following the demise of Crass, Conflict were by far the biggest of the anarcho-punk bands in the London area. They were also responsible for Mortarhate Records, which released material by many of the other punk bands in that scene, including AYS. And by all accounts, Cato and Jerwood were very close at this time and shared a flat at some point. According to Cato: "I have probably been closer to Colin, friend-wise, than I have been to anyone else, whether it was twenty years ago or not. And even further still, when Colin used to tell everyone we were brothers, I don't recall a single person not believing it".

It is actually not that surprising that Colin, or indeed many other working class punks in that period, would have personally known people who had been involved with the far right. According to Mark Wallis from Liberty (another SE London anarcho-punk band) "In the early days, Colin was an anarchist living on an estate in Eltham [the Coldharbour estate] with John and Paco, surrounded by NF skinheads". In those days, different punk factions were polarised with anarchists at one end and the White Noise bands like Skrewdriver at the other. In the middle were a whole lot of punk bands, such as those associated with the Oi scene, which featured people with a wide range of political positions.  All of these were rooted in predominately white working class youth scenes disaffected from the mainstream.

So even the most anti-fascist of punks might well have gone to school, lived on estates, drunk in the same pubs, or even played in bands with people who either had been, were, or went on to become involved with the far right. This doesn’t mean there was any sense of mutual tolerance – as people got more politically involved, violent conflicts could erupt. Indeed Conflict earned a reputation as a band prepared to deal very forcibly with fascists who turned up at gigs, and indeed to take the fight to them outside of gigs.

For instance, Ian Glasper’s book includes an account of Jerwood physically standing up to fascists at the seminal 1982 anarcho-punk gig at the Zig Zag squat in Westbourne Park, where Crass, The Mob and other bands played. According to Andy Martin from The Apostles, who also played that day, a group of right wing skinheads turned up with the result that; "this Asian lad – he was probably the only audience member not of white Caucasian origin – was being brutally kicked and punched by all these fascist thugs… that’s right five onto one. And what were the other members of the 500-strong audience doing while this was happening? They had formed a wide circle around the scene and watched in play out… that’s right, these anarchist pacifist rat-bags stood and watched five fascists beat up a 15-year-old Asian boy… In case you’re wondering what happened next, yes, we did surge forward to come to the lad’s aid, but before we could involve ourselves, both Penny and Andy (yes, from Crass) had jumped between us and grabbed the two biggest skinheads, and shoved them to one side of the hall. Colin Jerwood of Conflict confronted the others with less reasonable force, and threatened to put them all in hospital. Those three fascists virtually wet their knickers at the prospect".

Still, not everyone followed the advice of The Specials, in their 1984 single, that "if you have a racist friend, now is the time for your friendship to end". Perhap Jerwood believed that at this time Cato was moving away from his former mates in the British Movement – if not, you would certainly have to wonder why he actively promoted his musical efforts with AYS. More curious is why, according to accounts at the Collective Zine forum, Cato was spotted hanging out at a Conflict gig after he was publically exposed as a Nazi (he was on the front cover of Searchlight magazine in October 1994, Conflict reformed in 2000). And why did Mortarhate release a CD of old AYS material as recently as 2005? OK, so the music wasn’t fascist, but putting out the CD would presumably have involved some co-operation with Cato.

Morbid Symptoms

All quotes (except Goodrick-Clarke) are  from  Ian Glasper, 2006, The Day the Country Died: A History of Anarcho-Punk 1980-10984, Cherry Red Books, London; an exhaustive overview of the many bands in that scene which includes an interview with Cato. Glasper does state that he finds Cato’s politics ‘repugnant’ but he gives him a remarkably easy ride in the interview, allowing him to state that his "racism is rooted in love – of my own kind – and not in hatred on anyone else" and that "National Socialism, is borne of positive and profound ideals". Cato may be telling the truth that he had never personally participated in a racist attack, but a cursory glance over his record shows that he certainly wasn’t pushing peace and love with Combat 18!

NGC: Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, 2002, Black Sun: Aryan Cults, Esoteric Nazism, and the Politics of Identity, New York University Press, NY.

In the discussion at ‘Kill Your Pet Puppy’, ‘Chris’ states: "Strange John Cato’s membership of the BM (BNP didn’t formally exist at the time AYS were going) wasn’t better known. He didn’t exactly hide it, In fact Andy Martin ‘commended’ him on this on one of the Apostles EP covers at the time this stating that however loathsome his views he had more respect for him admitting to it than the supine anarcho punk wankers who just ignored like a flatulent grandparent at a Christmas dinner". I have been unable to find this Apostles reference.


  1. Maybe Andy Martin and The Apostles are the big clue here... maybe not...

    From Wikipedia: "The anti-communist and anti-gay lyrics of 'Rock Against Communism' and 'Kill or Cure' on the 'Giving of Loving Costs Nothing' ep and other similarly themed later songs opened the group to charges of fascism and homophobia. Whilst this material was intended to expose the supine attitudes of those within the 'anarcho punk' milieu who did not challenge such blatantly provocative sentiments (a tactic which Andy Martin had used since his entrance to the group), they undermined the coherence of the band's ideology..."

    Actually if you're aware that around the same time as 1984s The Giving Of Love Costs nothing EP, Andy Martin also produced "The Bob & Tanner" fanzine which at first glance would seem to be fascist and it would appear was an attempt to seduce fascists away from their scene and into the anarcho one (and the Giving of Love ep had a fascist side and an anti-fascist side which included a gay love song)... then maybe this makes sense of Cato and AYS... Perhaps Cato was putting a foot in a different subculture but by becoming a figure in it hoping to lead some kids over to the dark side... This is just a guess.

    As for Andy Martin, he is alleged to have been hanging around with the NF the 1970s at about the same time he had a mental breakdown... But even if this is true I think that he's shown overall his heart (and mind) are in the right place, but he can suffer from bad lapses of judgement. Among the latter I'd include his post Apostles band Academy 23 working with skunks like The Grey Wolves.

    And Crass definitely attracted fascists with their black uniforms and silly symbols.... I have to say that I like the way Colin of Conflict handled the Nazi bullies as Andy Martin describes it a lot better than the way Crass did at that particular gig (shame he didn't deal with Cato like that). I'm sure Crass would have rather the overt Nazis hadn't turned up at their gigs, the way they dealt with it in London leaves a lot to be desired, as anyone who knows the early history of Red Action can attest.

  2. People change and it is not unknown for certain individuals in the punk scene to end up as far right extremists. The far right is another way of 'protesting' or being against the democratic system, albeit at the other end of the spectrum to anarchism. It is likely that any person that became a far right extremist is going to view the past in terms of the present, and claim that they had these ideas previously, so as not to appear bad or 'dodgy' in the eyes of their peers. Even Skrewdriver themselves in the first incarnation were not a fascist band, although one can only speculate about Donaldson's views. He was beated up by teddy boys, so you'd think he wasn't at the time.

    Many anarcho punk bands of the time would preach to the converted, so having a few politically undecided individuals or even fascists turn up at their gigs was surely a bonus. Sometimes the fascists might cause trouble, but the lyrics might sew a few seeds there too. Conflict represented a minority of anarcho-punk bands that promoted direct action and violence, which was out of keeping with many of the pacifist bands of the time. But as pointed out in the article, one can wonder if pacificism was a guise for being spineless at times.

  3. I agree with much of what you say, although I think that, as it happens, in Cato's case he was probably a Fascist throughout. I just read Steve Ignorant's autobiography, where he defends Conflict's confrontational attitude against the pacifism of Rimbaud and the rest of Crass. Mind you, there's also an interesting story there about Conflict's Colin Jerwood going into a Berlin bar and repeatedly chanting 'Millwall' and 'Two World Wars and One World Cup' to try to start a fight - hardly what you'd expect from someone trying to confront racism, nationalism and Fascism.

  4. Not particularly sticking up for Colin, but I'd be surprised if that story was true, as he's a Man U fan (oddly, for an Eltham boy). Then again, I remember reading a Conflict interview in an issue of MRR circa '89, where Steve Ignorant made the baffling claim that Crass had once planned to blow up a plane at Heathrow (weirdly, the way he acts now, you'd swear he'd been in some apolitical power pop group). My experience of anarcho types left me a bit jaded...some of the crustie types in SE London acted like complete dickheads at times, getting smashed out of their brains constantly, and picking fights with lone individuals while walking back from New Cross to Camberwell after the Deptford Free Festival in '95.

    It's hard to tell whether some of the anarcho/bonehead coexistence was due to patches of common ground, or the anarchos' fear of receiving a kicking if they spoke out too loudly about it. Apparently the group Chaos split after repeated right-wing rucks at gigs, and DIRT had a BM following (I think the drummer was an ex-member). Interestingly, with groups like Oi Polloi becoming more popular in the late '80s/'90s (who have a pretty unequivocal anti-fascist stance), the A-Punk scene did tend to adopt more self-policing, with known local nazis being prevented from attending gigs. Chumbawamba, regardless of their music or subsequent career path, also played a notable role in popularising anti-fascism in A-Punk and promoting AFA.

  5. Ben Stargazer said:

    I seem to remember the guy from Admit You're Shit was running a music duplicating service, whereby you could send him money to record a variety of American punk and hardcore LPs onto tapes for you. He had a huge list of American punk LPs you could choose from. I sent off for a few tapes and never received them. I seem to remember other people had the same problem. Maybe the guy was trying to create a database of anarchist punks to sell to his Nazi friends. Or maybe he was just ripping kids off to fund his Nazi activities.

    As for Oi Polloi, I remember a lot of controversy about them having a Nazi or ex-Nazi drummer at one point early in their career.

  6. Morbid Symptoms6 Nov 2010, 10:18:00

    Having now been in touch with people who knew Cato before he was even in AYS I am now wondering whether it was true that he was in the British Movement , as he seems to have been a pretty straightforward SE London teenage punk. The BM connection is mentioned in the Glasper book, but wonder if there is any other verification of this. Without it, it's a fairly straightforward case of somebody starting out in one place politically then ending up somewhere else.

    As I think my article makes clear, I don't think there's any suggestion of 'infiltration' or strategic intent in this case. As some of the other comments have indicated, the 'Anarcho punk' milieu wasn't a politically coherent scene populated by hardcore anarchists studying the lessons of the Spanish revolution. It was a muddled and sometimes chaotic anti-authoritarian scene, with parts of its becoming more explicitly linked to a more class struggle anarchist/militant anti-fascist perspective only later on (and yes, Chumbawamba were central to this).

    The argument about how to deal with fascists at gigs, most famously around the Battle of Conway Hall 1979, is something worth returning to in more detail, maybe another post.

  7. Clydeside Anarchist23 Nov 2010, 09:56:00

    Oi Polloi did use a nazi drummer on their early records. His name was Gavin 'Guv' Robertson. He was a member of the NF and later the BNP whilst drumming for the band (up to and including their LP Unite & Win which includes numerous anti-fascist songs - go figure). Despite singer, Deek Allan's pathetic defence of him drumming for the band being that "they couldn't find a better drummer" his position finally became untenable when he was photographed in the local paper alongside John Tyndall in capacity of bodyguard during a BNP Edinburgh election push. As was documented at the time in MRR and numerous fanzines.

    This is said not to out Oi Polloi as hypocritical in their anti-fascist stance (though it does perhaps bring into question their political integrity versus the importance they regarded their recording career) but to illustrate, as noted above, the lack of political coherence amongst anarcho punk bands. Oi Polloi are primarily known for their animal rights stance but for a number of years had a guitarist who worked at a battery farm. He later went on to join The Exploited, a band hardly renown for their political correctness.

    Another Glasgow anarcho punk band who played with Oi Polloi on occasion had an Ulster Loyalist flute-band member amongst their members. Quite how he equated this with the band's anti-religion and anti-royalty songs I cannot imagine. I questioned the band myself about this inconsistency within their ranks but their response was a (commendably honest) admission that was just how he'd been brought up and that he was a mate so they could only hope he would change. Whether he did or not I do not know as I was never tempted to court his friendship.

    I would imagine Colin Jerwood's friendship with Cato would be borne of and defended along similar lines. What I would be more interested to know would be if and when Jerwood severed his links with Cato following the latter's final move to the other side and emergence as a leading figure in Combat 18. Having a nazi for a flatmate certainly didn't appear to mollify Conflict's public attitude to fascists, despite their many other failings.

    The inconsistiences of Andy Martin of The Apostles, ideological or otherwise, are something that could fill a website in itself. Whoever were to attempt the task would be a brave man indeed as well as one with a lot of time on their hands. In the time I was in touch with him he made claims to being a communist then an anarchist and Chinese then Scots. A great intelligence if a very confusing if not confused man.

    I would be intrigued to know, however, how Andy Martin (who in fact made me a tape of AYS recordings many years ago) knew of Cato's involvement with the BM enough to publicly commend Cato's candour in his beliefs if they were not common knowledge within the punk scene? I wasn't aware of them myself other than reading the anarcho punk book and discovering this site recently through another topic related to anarcho punk and fascism.

  8. Following the last post. This phenomenom has never changed in Scotland, the blind eye to those with fascist sympathys has never gone away. Just check out scotland's "A-political" Oi! bands Baker's Dozen and On File on facebook or myspace, check out their links and other friends and open pandoras box to their RAC, and white power pals. "Antifascist" punks and skins still put them on and help them. Despite an awareness of this. One Glasgow afa skinhead a few years ago told me when discussing a well known local nazi skinhead that the guy was "ok as long as you don't discuss politics with him."

  9. Ho yeah, maybe these skinhead bands mentioned enough are not out and out nazis but as said their links especially on their band members personal facebook accounts lead to openly nazi pals. Doesn't take much work.

  10. This phenomenon is even more telling on Myspace, or at least had been until revelations about Tony Wakeford's continuing associations forced some of those concerned to 'spring clean' their accounts. When Sol Invictus announced a forthcoming Portugal date, for instance, within a matter of days a member of the openly fascist Portuguese Hammerskins popped up amongst the band's 'friends'.

    In another instance, a 'spoof' Myspace page was opened in the name of 'Merry Fable', with the sole intention of propagating a fairly bloodless, but unmistakably anti-semitic joke concerning Searchlight founder Gerry Gable. As eagle-eyed anti-fascists might be aware, this representative example of witless bonehead humour originated within the pages of ITP rag, 'Final Conflict', and the few 'friends' who had affiliated themselves included neo-folk luminaries Rose McDowall and Michael Cashmore (and yes, before some fascist apologist pipes up – both of whom moderated their own Myspace pages at the time).

    Furthermore, the Tursa-associated band Naevus would be hard pushed to explain a 'Tripod' style Links Page from an abandoned website which is still available to view at some remote outpost in cyberspace. Quite an extensive inventory of international far-right political groupings, this, with a glowing entry on Naevus themselves placed slap bang in the middle. Oddly enough, the wording of the Naevus listing echoed the band's own website at that time, word for word.....

  11. PsychicAntifa@ Hi, my name is Monika Pula, I hope you don't think that this is too weird - or new age - and that you go with my idea and post this up. I'd like to explain my skills - and what it is I'd like to do for you. I am what is known as a 'psychic profiler' - I have 'sklls' that are employed at times by law enforcement agencies and private investigation channels throughout America and further afield. I use a mixture of psychiatric training and analyis, divination, intuition and plain old sleuthing. I am also strongly antifascist - that is what brought me here, of course. I applaud your work - but note that you allow comments - both good and bad - and have therefore unfortunately attracted some bad people along with the good. I noted. as have you, it seems, that behind the anonymous and occasionally fake names there is one person in particular who constantly derides the content and belittles your efforts to get at the truth - suggesting that what you report on is unworthy of attention and out - of - date - or driven by less-than-pure motives. I care little about the latter - in this case - it is the end result that counts [although I do instinctively believe that you do what you do for the right reasons - that is a little side analyis, gratis!]

  12. One person, in particular, therefore, will be the focus of my attention. I see him [for I believe strongly that it is a male] as being about 38 to 40 years of age. He is very aware of age and the aging process - and also of supposed decorum surrounding the different stages of life - this may be due to having older parents than is usual - and the possible rigid approach that older parents can have to life. I sense that he has a relationship - but one that only engages half of him - the other half - the half we are experiencing here - is closed and unknown to the partner. I feel his resentment and envy of her at times. Or subject is in employment - and quite probably has a job with some responsibility but with little glitz or glamor about it - long hours and maybe some commuting. I feel that in fact that this is a successful couple in their work but that the female partner is by far the more successful also the more creatively rewarded in her work. I see them therefore spending time apart - even when at home. She exhausted and going to bed at the end of a rewarding and satisflying day - he sitting in front of the computer [probably drinking alone] leading the other life that I feel also taps into his past - pre- the responsibility that he feels a man of his age should be showing to the world. I feel that this was once a 'creative type' - but one who now does little himself - feeling maybe 'too old for stardom'. He probably makes much of his past and somewhat cautiously and anonymously promotes his past works - by pretending to be a third party to them!.

  13. He probably uses the web to talk to people he admires in the same way also hangs on to his partner and feeds off of her own kudos and renown in her field. He has [and this is not uncommon], huge and ever-present inadequacies that are now expanded by ambivalent attitudes towards his partner and those he knows through online correspondence only - or in some cases quite probably people he does know face-to-face - some of your adversaries, prhaps? he will pretend to know more about the lives of some people in order to enhance his standing. I would say it is probable that he is involved on the periphery of racist and nationalist organisations - but those with a veneer of intellectualism. Also there is the feeling of his having had dalliance with the Occult [there is an attendant darkness] - but this is in part, again - to prop up his fragile ego and has no true depth to it - he is ever in thrall to adepts - whatever field they inhabit. I se him as having a nondescript sort of first name - single syllable, easily misunderstood if not delivered with confidence which gave him a complex at a formative stage. He is also nondescript and therfore non-memorable in terms of appearance - possibly bearded - as in his youth he was maybe once attractive but now feels himself not so. He treats his partner, sometimes therefore, as a trophy - boasting about her job and/or physical attributes in the way that people sometimes carry around family phots or photos of 'status automobiles'.

  14. In summary - you have a man - maybe 38 to 42 years of age [35 at a push if he is especially conflicted] with an overdeveloped interest in his own ancestry [an attempt to find validity in his 'roots'] and born maybe in a mundane, unexciting locale - who, as a result defines himself by some sort of historical lineage in order to avoid the mundanity of his actual existence. A boring job - one whose vague title promises more than the actuality delivers, perhaps? [which at first impresses at parties then withers with explanation] in contrast with a successful and creatively stimulated partner. He employs the web as an ego-enhancing battleground' where he attempts to 'big himself up' and seem wise, whilst engaging simultaneously the darker and amoralistic 'true self' he dare not fully reveal to his partner.

    So - if I may step outside my professional guise for a moment - this is one very 'sad' individual - such as fill the 'true crime' shelves with a little more nurturing - I'm glad he is not my problem - but I'm sorry he is yours! you need one hell of a big bug spray - hope this analysis sheds a little more light on your problem - happy hunting!

    I wish you well in your continuing fight,

    Monika Pula, Bay Area Antifa, North-East Coalition.

  15. Not to go all Larry O' Hara on yo ass or nufink but a teenage BM member who goes on to live with the singer of Conflict(after the demise of Crass indisputably the most popular UK anarchist punk band whose gigs at the time invariably had a huge police presence and ended up in scuffles,mini riots etc,and had close contacts with Red Action,Class War,ALF,Hunt Sabs etc)then goes on to become one of the "idealogues"of C18(alongside David Myatt,Satanist and now fundamentalist Muslim) and had access to loads of peoples addresses through his publications"A System Partly Revealed""The Oak"etc and his rip off mailorder tape copying(and Motorhates rip off mailorder,anyone ever get anything back from them?)would make a fuckin great state asset no?

  16. trust me on this as I was there...John Cato (or Weenie as he was known then) was an arsehole who was regularly victimised and made to look a fool by those of us who realised that there was something dodgy about him even though we couldn't quite put our fingers on it at the time. The only thing that kept him safe was his friendship with Colin which I think to this day Colin needs to explain and justify...but my theory is that Colin was always drawn to those individuals who stood out from the crowd for whatever reason. when Weenie was exposed as a fascist by Searchlight a certain group of individuals who felt let down by him paid a visit to his house in Gravesend Kent to explain their dissatisfaction.....suffice to say it wasn't pretty.

    1. Yes, I was there too. Cato was then given police protection (installation of a panic button & security camera) by Kent Police at his house in Palmer Avenue, Gravesend because he was afraid of attack by local anti-fascists & Sikhs; within a few weeks he fled to Spalding in Lincolnshire. Cato was a fascist poseur/propagandist during a spate of racist attacks in Gravesend & was forced out of our town by local people, most of whom neither knew nor cared about his involvement in the music scene.

  17. Rim an Weenie later formed a band with guitarist Lee Spalding, called 'Paradise' in '88. l converted the basement of my squat on 28 Martello St. Hackney, into a rehearsal studio.
    They rehearsed there twice a week for a few years. l knew weenie well enough to know that
    there was something off about him, even then.

  18. There's always been overlap and fence jumping with the far right and far left. If you piss off your anarcho punk buddies, skinheads are the next logical group to join. They drink a lot, listen to punk rock, hate the government and blame their problems on other people. Same shit really.

  19. john and AYS were known mostly for being into American hc quite early on.. sorta straight edge aswell although the lyrics were pretty cryptic..ays had intended to do a split tape with the stupids..not exactly candidates for the nf..a system partly revealed as john zine from 1983 it covered anarcho bands like pyscho faction etc..btw I am not defending the bloke just saying he kept his views hidden..maybe people who knew him personally knew different..
    bizarrely I found something john wrote in societys victim fanzine issue 2 1984 where he criticises colin conflict for his alledged violence and mentions ays had written about him entitled "anarchy barmy army"- "everyone begins to realise you never meant what you said/ the conflicting ideals you invented forces others to be lead"

  20. Generally I don't learn article on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up
    very pressured me to try and do so! Your writing taste
    has been surprised me. Thanks, very great post.


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