The Cult of Camila: More on the Scandal at “Kids Company”

It’s a short step from “respected” to “ridiculed.” Just ask Camila Batmanghelidjh, the charismatic Anglo-Iranian founder of the now-defunct children’s charity Kids Company. A year ago, she was a secular saint, idolized by thousands of British liberals:

Camila Batmanghelidjh is a world-renowned child psychotherapist and expert on the rehabilitation of maltreated children. … When I ask my peers about Camila, the chorus is the same. She is viewed as a larger than life heroine and absolute inspiration to the women I talk to from CEOs to fellow journalists. A 21st century Mary Poppins laced with the intellectual chutzpah of Hilary Clinton, the patience and compassion of Nelson Mandela and the steely business acumen of Martha Lane Fox. (Camila Batmanghelidjh — A Thoroughly Modern Mary Poppins Via the Turquoise Domes of Persia, The Ethical Hedonist, 16th February 2014)

Sign of the times: Camila Batmanghelidjh

Sign of the times: Camila Batmanghelidjh

“Huge discrepancies”

Now Kids Company has collapsed, and respect has turned to ridicule. A parliamentary committee has just questioned Camila and her Iraqi-Jewish sidekick Alan Yentob, “Creative Director” at the BBC. Even the Guardian and New Statesman were incredulous at the dynamic duo’s performance:

Today’s meeting of the public administration select committee has a reasonable claim to being the single weirdest event in recent parliamentary history. This was three solid hours of bewildering excuses, recriminations and non sequiturs. …

It was chaos from the start. The kaleidoscopically flamboyant Ms Batmanghelidjh — looking more than ever like a pile of Aladdin’s laundry — seemed incapable of giving a straight answer. Paul Flynn (Lab, Newport West) snapped that her replies were “verbal ectoplasm”. Mr Jenkin asked whether it was true that Kids Company routinely handed teenagers cash in brown envelopes. In the space of six seconds, Ms Batmanghelidjh said this was “a myth” and “not a myth”.

She claimed Kids Company had been “intensely inspected”, but proved unable to recall when its last inspection took place. Kate Hoey (Lab, Vauxhall) asked about a £580,000 tax bill. Ms Batmanghelidjh replied that the money had been “conceptualised”. … For some reason Mr Yentob kept putting his head in his hands. … How on earth did he get into this mess? And how on earth will he get out of it? — Alan Yentob’s day of embarrassment over Kids Company, The Daily Telegraph

With her kaleidoscopic outfits (topped by her trademark turban) and her implausible accent [Camila Batmanghelidjh] rose from nowhere to become the most extravagant self-creation since Liberace. Yes, she might have looked absurd — “like a pile of Aladdin’s laundry” as one critic put it — but you were never likely to miss her or forget her. What’s more, all that contrived ethnicity gave her a credibility which masked her privileged background (she was privately educated at Sherborne school for girls) and stopped people asking awkward questions about her suitability to be running a multimillion pound children’s charity. In this she exploited the same weakness in our culture so hilariously exposed by Ali G: we would rather be thought an idiot than be thought a racist. — Mystery of how Kids Company won so much support, The Daily Express

But Camila refused even to allow the chairman of the Public Administration Select Committee, Bernard Jenkin, to call Kids Company a ‘failing charity’ — two months after it went bust — without her ziggurat-like turban quivering with affront. When questioned on how many children she actually helped — with vast sums frittered on mortgages, designer clothes, private school fees, personal chauffeurs and those dubious weekly hand-outs in brown envelopes — it was a classic case of never apologise, never explain. — Camila Batmanghelidjh’s ego killed off Kids Company, The Daily Mail

Dysfunctional Duo: “Batman and Yentrobin”

Dysfunctional Duo: “Batman and Yentrobin

Socks for the children, a mansion for Camilla

There is an excellent case for charging both Batmanghelidjh and Yentob with fraud, misrepresentation and misuse of public funds. Kids Company claimed to be supporting 36,000 “kids” every year. It has produced files for fewer than 2,000. Some of its “kids” were adults, including people in their thirties, and at least one received money overseas after being deported for “criminal activities.” While Yentob was still trying to get millions more from the government, he signed an email claiming that the closure of Kids Company would pose a “high risk” of “looting, rioting and arson attacks on government buildings,” not to mention “starvation and modern-day slavery.” Parts of London could “descend into savagery,” the email foreboded. Yentob later said that “this was not intended in any way as a threat.” He’s also denied that his repeated interventions on behalf of Kids Company at the BBC were meant to intimidate his underlings and influence their reporting.

Since the collapse of Kids Company, it has emerged that Camila, fearless champion of the sock-less, coat-less and starving, employed a chauffeur and “up to five personal assistants.” She was also taking regular swims in a private pool at a “£5,000-a-month” mansion rented for one of her “senior aides.” Kids Company were funding private education for employees’ children to “reduce staff stress levels” and, in 2014, spent £769,000 on twenty-five “top-ranking clients,” one of whom “praised Ms Batmanghelidjh for helping her settle in London after arriving from Jamaica.” A further £40,000 was given to the London School of Economics in 2013 to fund a report that described the “beauty and profound truth of [Kids Company’s] simple message: children recover with unconditional and unrelenting love.” It said Camila was a “mother figure,” “role model” and “exceptional… highly-capable” leader with “skills and unique qualities.”

Princess Camila

Camila frequently cited this report as proof of Kids Company’s worthiness, never mentioning that she had funded it herself. But don’t worry: she has been cleared of all wrongdoing by her own sternest critic: “in my heart we acted in good faith.” She went on: “Unrelenting love is the branding I offer the children.” As I pointed out in “Hearts of Darkness,” she combines the narcissism of Tony Blair with the egomania of the late Princess Diana. And yes, she was actually called the “Children’s Princess” by one of her deluded liberal admirers (echoing the title of “People’s Princess” bestowed on Diana by Blair after her death).

Camila isn’t being called that now. Liberals are joining in the “incredulous laughter” that accompanied her appearance before the parliamentary committee. They don’t realize two things. First, they are part of the joke. Second, the joke is an extremely sick one. Liberals are laughing today, but they allowed Camila to get away with her confidence trick for nineteen years, despite warnings as far back as 2002. Even now, liberals assume that Kids Company was a noble cause and that Batmanghelidjh and Yentob acted from the best of motives, despite their flaws as managers.

In truth, it’s not a noble cause to spend large sums of other people’s money on the “welfare” of Blacks. The dysfunctional duo were motivated by ego, not altruism. The pathologies against which Camila claimed to be fighting — child abuse, violence, educational failure — flourish in Black “communities” across the Western world despite massive funding of all sorts of panaceas. This description of noise, fried chicken and menace in Britain will be instantly familiar to Americans:

Kids Company’s Urban Academy: to really convey the place in 2008 you’d need an immersive experience. Invasive noise, overblown primary coloured frescoes of flowers on every wall, papier mâché models of fish stuck here and there, a powerful smell of fried chicken inside and marijuana outside, all overlaid with the threat of violence — something altogether more pungent than Proust’s madeleine. …

Fridays at the Urban Academy in 2008 were a more extreme version of the rest of the week. On Fridays little packages of cash were handed out to every young person through a small window in reception. It was always tense. There were tears. There was shouting. There were threats. There were fights. There would have been even more of all these things if it hadn’t been for the presence of Kids Company’s security. …

In no way did it feel to me like the things it was supposed to be. A safe, caring and therapeutic environment? I have never, before or since, felt more unsafe, less cared for and more destabilised at work. (We need to talk about Kids Company, OSCA, 11th February 2015)

The best way to combat these pathologies was demonstrated by Israel when it provided its Black Jews with injections of Depo-Provera, a powerful contraceptive. By contrast, the millions of pounds given to Kids Company served merely to increase Black pathologies in Britain. Kids Company funded drug-taking, facilitated immigration from Africa and the Caribbean, and subsidized the birth of more Blacks with low average IQs and high average levels of aggression and criminality. Camila was always ready to assist the vast state apparatus of lies, deceit and legal threat that forces British Whites to “celebrate” their enrichment by murderers, rapists and fraudsters from the Third World.

Clowns and Crooks

The credulity and minority worship that facilitated Camila’s nineteen years of fraud are found everywhere in modern British. Sir Peter Fahy, chief constable of Greater Manchester police, has just expressed concern to the Guardian about the government’s latest “anti-extremism” plans. He thinks they threaten “British values” and may further alienate Britain’s vibrant Muslim community. The Guardian report went on:

The GMP [Greater Manchester Police] boss is not the only police chief to have told the Guardian of concerns about the new extremism plans. Another senior officer, who asked not to be named, warned they risk damaging an effort of over a decade to isolate those advocating violence from the vast majority in their communities. “I’m not sure [this has] been thought through at all,” the officer said, adding: “The last 10 years we have been trying to drive a wedge between violent extremists and mainstream Muslims.” (Anti-extremism drive puts British values at risk, says police chief, The Guardian, 19th October 2015)

Why do we need to “drive a wedge” between “violent extremists” and the “vast majority” of “mainstream Muslims”? Aren’t we constantly told that mainstream Muslims abhor violence and utterly reject the perverted teachings of Islamic State? Yes, we are told that, but it’s a lie: “around half of Britain’s three million Muslims could be ISIS [Islamic State] sympathisers.” Camila Batmanghelidjh and her fraudulent charity are one small symptom of a much more serious disease. She flourished not despite being a clown and a crook, but because she is a clown and a crook. That’s why Britain’s liberal elite embraced her so warmly. She was a woman after their own hearts.

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