Julian Ruck, the hardest-hitting Labour grassroots supporter you’ll never meet

[Jewels from page 9]

Dear Reader, have we really seen this blog grow so far (and share so much love) on the basis of the first 8 pages of Rickety Chops alone?

Yes, both I and the monkeys have been slack. It is true, and I throw myself (and them, to cushion my landing) upon your tender mercies. I am ashamed to admit it, but I grew bored with Julian. I know; how unreasonable. How short-sighted.

I thought he had run out of tricks – I thought complaining about arts subsidies and the Welsh language, while telling porky pies about his own sales figures, ‘organising’ ruinously bad festivals and complaining that some people find his prose vomit-inducing was all he had to offer.

But no.

I was a fool!

In his peculiar desire to say nasty things about Wales to as many people as possible, he has now quite brilliantly convinced a prominent Labour grassroots blog to publish articles from a not-so-closet rabid right-winger attacking the Labour party. Or, as it turns out, articles actually written and published by Tory politicians before being plagiarised by Jules! Really, it’s too Dada for words.

It’s lucky I have a sturdy bladder, or all this laughter would have some embarrassing consequences.

I must not be distracted, though – I have a mission to complete. The world is agog to know if there is indeed a mistake on every single page of the inglorious Ragged Cliffs. So, is there on page 9?

Page 9 is an oddity.

No, don’t give up hope! But Julian, to the monkeys’ surprise, goes a little easier on commas on page 9. In fact, he goes so easily that he almost gives up on them entirely – 6 commas in 40 lines of text. The result is a lower incidence rate of violence against commas, but a tone reminiscent of the primary school. Short sentences. Without much happening. Without commas for the most part. But also lacking life. Quite hard to read. Almost painful. Oh, there goes another monkey.

The commas don’t get off scot-free, though, I’m sorry to say; even when there are only 6 of the poor little beggars.

‘Lise wanted desperately to embark upon a musical career and dreamed of being a concert pianist. A dream, she and others knew, could one day become a reality.’

Now bear with me, Julian, because you might find this a little complicated, given how much trouble you have with more obvious problems.

The thing is, you want the ‘she and others knew’ to refer to the dream, don’t you? You’re not saying that Lise and others knew that dreams in general could become reality, are you? So that means that the ‘she and others knew’ needs to function as a descriptive phrase – and once you stick it between commas, it becomes disconnected from the word it’s meant to be describing, and works as an interruptive phrase.

In other words (for the grammatically-challenged) you don’t actually need those commas. If you went with:

A dream she and others knew could one day become a reality.

…it would still be every bit as maudlin and generally pointless, but it would actually mean what you wanted it to mean.

You’re also still struggling with the whole concept of abstract nouns and the way in which they don’t often work as subjects in the passive voice, aren’t you? It’s okay, you can admit it here, where you’re among friends (not like those loony socialists over at Labout-Uncut!). So:

His difference she knew would be bullied.

No, Jules, no. He would be bullied – perhaps because of his differences. You can only bully a person (or perhaps an animal, the monkeys demand that I add). You can’t bully a difference, or happiness, or a world-weary sense of tedium. If you could, I’d cheerfully bully the world-weary sense of tedium you manage to paint over so much of the internet.

So, small beer by Julian’s usual standards. It does, though, have my favourite sentence from Julian:

At first Lise was constantly faced with weird looks and despair each time she spoke.

You just know this comes from personal experience, don’t you? Probably at one of Julian’s talks on creative writing. At first, and constantly.

Good luck with attacking the Labour party, Julian dear. They’re big and ugly enough to look after themselves. But do please stop writing; you’re hurting the words.

Couldn’t you record your rants as podcasts? That would do so much less damage to the language.



Filed under The Society for the Preservation of Commas

12 responses to “Julian Ruck, the hardest-hitting Labour grassroots supporter you’ll never meet

  1. jme

    Google search for Julian’s epic sentence: was constantly faced with weird looks and despair each time she spoke.

    First non-Jewels result: Diederik Stapel’s Audacious Academic Fraud – The New York Times

    Oh sweet Jesus, he just can’t escape the plagarism tag that’s been sewn into his ironed y-fronts.

  2. PC ap Plod

    A beautiful riff on Ruck, Wales’s noisiest and most shameless plagiarist.
    Glad Jewels is keeping up the, scrutiny.

  3. He, must be, scrutinised,.

    Joao Morais says:
    June 14, 2013 at 5:52 pm
    Mr Ruck: David Hewson (and perhaps rather playfully, Oliver too) have raised a good point. Here is a side-by-side comparison of Glyn Davies MP’s blogpost dated 26 April 2013 and yours, dated 14 June 2013:


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “If a committee member shows any capacity to think for themselves, or stand by a principle, just throw them off – immediately.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “If any member of said committee shows any sign at all of having an independent intellect (or indeed any intellect at all), or god forbid a view that may be deemed “principled”, then they are ignominiously ejected, without a safety harness.”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “Three Labour AMs are publicly in support of a legal ban on smacking children. The Minister is not.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “…three of the Labour team were in support of a ban on physical chastisement of those objectionable urchins who fall by the parental wayside as it were, the minister overseeing all this, one Gwenda Thomas, was not.”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “…just before the Committee was due to meet, to take evidence, and consider an amendment to introduce the smacking ban into the Bill, Labour’s Chief Whip just sacked the three principled members, Christine Chapman (Chair), Julie Morgan and Jenny Rathbone – and replaced them with three others.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “Chance would have it, that just before the committee was due to convene, take evidence and consider an amendment to introduce the child-smacking ban into the Bill, old Labour’s chief whip-master sacked the three liberal musketeers, and without as much as a by your leave.

    Christine Chapman (Chair), Julie Morgan and Jenny Rathbone were all replaced by more accommodating members with a more corporally inclined inclination than their predecessors.”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “When the meeting started, the microphones were turned off so that new chair, Ann Jones could explain that she had only just found out she was even on the Committee.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “When the meeting started, microphones were injudiciously turned off so that the new chair, one Ann Jones, was left to rather miserably explain that she had only just found out about her ‘calling’ to the committee…”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “And this comes after news this week that First Minister, Carwyn Jones simply refused to answer a FOI inquiry about discussions between himself and Sir Terry Mathews.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “Only a few weeks ago Carwyn Jones, patriarch of unreformed welsh Labour, refused outright to a freedom of information enquiry relating to his discussions with Sir Terry Matthews…”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “Now behind the request is the suspicion (I think) that Sir Terry has influenced, or sought to influence who is in the First Minister’s Cabinet.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “The strong suspicion was that poor old Carywn was having his ministerial reshuffle rewritten for him.”


    Glyn Davies MP wrote:

    “I’ve never been a fan of the FOI system – but can you imagine the UK Gov’t getting away with this sort of high-handed behaviour.”

    Julian Ruck wrote:

    “Can you imagine the furore at Westminster if the prime minister point blank refused to respond to this type of FOI where manipulation of cabinet posts was suspected?”


    Mr Ruck, it all seems remarkably similar. But before I add my own thoughts, what are your thoughts on this comparison?

    This sentence by sentence comparison was by Joao Morais, I think this is plagiarism. Had to pop it onto here as it has been a bit drowned on labour uncut. Why they give this rabid right winger a soap box I do, not, know. But I suppose he is ‘infuential’, having sold 7 copies in Wales alone.

  4. To pause for a moment’s reflection: it must be a bitter thing to wish yourself a writer when you struggle with both grammar and expression.

    How much more bitter must it be, though, to want so much to be seen as a writer that you will deliberately copy what other people write, and publish it under your own name?

    It puts me in mind of a serpent devouring itself.

    For your own sanity, Julian, find a hobby you’re good at. You’ll enjoy it so much more when you know you’re achieving something honestly.

  5. He could ,perhaps, make a quaint local watercolourist. Lovely countryside round Kidwelly though only when it is not blighted by thousands of cars, coming and going to that e-book festival of great renown….

    Though knowing Julian, he would botch five paintings, decide he was the most superb draughtsman ever, harass the Tate, send threatening letters to poor Nicolas Serota and then probably join the Stuckists. And then manage to blag a column in Artist Newsletter (which will become a great source of amusement, especially after he plagiarised one of Van Gogh’s letters).

  6. MrsPennThomas

    I can’t quite get the image of Julian ironing his y-fronts out of my head. I feel queasy.

  7. Taffy Fatwa

    I love his plagiarism technique. If you make something incredibly verbose, of course it’s original to you!

    A sentence like ‘He has three mangos in his bag’ becomes ‘He was in the situation, of bearing one more than two, round cultivated fruits native to South, in a sack of canvas, clipped, with buckles and a long corded strap, over his shoulders.’

  8. crazyhorse

    Just wondering, now Labour Uncut seem happy to persistently publish Ruck’s rants- has anyone considered making a FOI request to the ACW to get a copy of his festival funding app. I think it would be in the public interest now that he is trying to steer the debate.
    Plus, whenever he mentions that he is a best seller he states that Literature Wales will back up these figures, anyone got a statement from them on this. Again I think it would be in the public interest if he is out and out lying.

  9. Rhys 'Confusing Pseudonym' Jones

    I suggest Jewels uses

    ‘Just people having a joke’ – Dyfed-Powys Police

    as its new strapline. http://www.thisissouthwales.co.uk/Kidwelly-author-Julian-Ruck-challenges-Dyfed/story-19623620-detail/story.html

  10. Mrs Penn-Thomas

    Oh dear, I have just realised Julian still thinks I am Penny. Maybe I should show him how Google works? Or would that just burst his bubble if he were to be faced with something called ‘the truth’? A dog always returns to his vomit is the phrase that comes to mind.

    p.s. Hope you and the monkeys are keeping well Mr Jewels.

  11. Taffy Fatwa

    Mr Origami is Julian Ruck right? Or is there more than one person with the same poor grammar, and insistence of saying ‘Dear ___” and ‘PS’ at the end of blog posts when it isn’t necessary.

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