May 2008

Anti-Semitism in academe.

Free speech for some only


In a review of the book History Lesson: A Race Odyssey by Mary Lefkowitz the reviewer Michael Burleigh starts his article with the following sentences

For several decades, universities on both sides of the Atlantic have not been pleasant places to work. Since the 1960s, humanities and social science faculties have been the last redoubt of the Left, whether in its Marxist totalitarian or post-modernist, multicultural incarnations. Academics have been allowed to have their way in opposing a stifling political correctness.

West Midlands Police strike again.

Archived Stop Press article

up against the wallup against the wall

A police officer has been demoted after pin-ups of the model Jordan (Katie Price) were found on the inside of staff lockers which, when open, could be seen by anyone of a nervous disposition who happened to be passing. Officers in the Operational Support Unit (OSU) were the culprits. These are specially trained people who deal with major incidents such as terrorist attacks. It is good to know that they are being kept on their toes. Staff were offered advice after the discovery of the 'inappropriate material'. Another factor causing disquiet was the tie pin worn by OCU officers in the shape of a cobra. This has been banned as, according to a police spokeswoman it was: not in keeping with the force vision of making our communities feel safer.

This is the same police force that tried to prosecute Channel 4 for reporting graphic scenes of homophobia, racism, anti-Semitism, mysogyny and general hatred in their 'undercover mosque' Dispatches programme and was successfully sued by Channel 4 for £100,000. As a community member I feel much safer now the cobra tie pins and the pin ups have been removed.

Aung San Suu Kyi

Aun San Suu KyiAun San Suu Kyi

Burma's ruling junta has renewed pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi's house arrest. They have also faked their constitutional referendum and are responsible for culpable genocide. Ban Ki-Moon waits three weeks and then visits a 'show camp' in Burma when many more people have died from the cyclone. What is the point of the UN?

EU car tax

It's that EU again!It's that EU again!
Nearly 18 million motorists will be hit with above-inflation increases in their annual road tax. Labour MPs are blaming our Gordon but it really is not his fault.
No, more or less everything relates back to the EU. Think of any piece of UK legislation add EU and google. Up will usually come reams of information showing the EU derivation. So, if you do this with CO2 and car tax you come up with the following information.

Look at the EU framework directive.

Here we are told that- the third pillar of the existing EU strategy to reduce CO2 emissions from cars aims to:[i] promote fuel-efficient cars through fiscal measures.... several Member States have done this, and the Commission has proposed EU legislation aimed at including a CO2 element in national car taxes. Measures to promote the purchase of fuel efficient vehicles, notably through an amendment to the car labelling directive to make it more effective and by encouraging Member States that levy road tax to base it on cars' CO2 emissions.

Stop and search?

Stop and think before you speak?

Rogues gallery, Aynsley-Green Rogues gallery, Aynsley-Green
In today's Daily Mail Melanie Phillips is writing about the rise in the number of young people dying from stab wounds. She is understandably horrified by this sort of crime seemingly spiralling ever upwards with no sign of a fix in sight. But she gets really angry and again understandably so with the person she calls the 'children's tsar', Sir Al Aynsley-Green.

This is typical of her mood on Aynsley-Green -

"As if this epidemic of violence wasn't bad enough, we have to put up with the utterances of the Children's Commissioner, Sir Al Aynsley-Green.

According to this ridiculous figure, the stop-and-search powers being belatedly used by the police to curb such attacks might further antagonise young people.

A very strange sensation

Help for Gordon Brown?

JohnPrescott, thumbs up for Gordon? JohnPrescott, thumbs up for Gordon?

A weekend away in the South of England with relatives was the reason I awoke in a strange house on Sunday morning to the sound of John Prescott on the television. Had I been at home I would have gone to bed earlier and the reason I was late to bed was a visit to Greenwich University to watch a girl band perform there. And the reason for doing that was two of my relatives where in the band. Also let me point out that my home has no television. As last week BBC Radio 4 has spoilt many a person's morning routine with the sound of Cherie Blair's memoirs read by herself you would have thought that a respite on Sunday morning of the Bank holiday was in order.

Fauxtography saga continued

Archived Stop Press article

fact or fiction?
click to enlargefact or fiction? click to enlarge

See part one here. This is the eighth year of the court saga.
A French court has ruled in favour of a Media-Ratings which was accused of libel for claiming that footage of a shooting incident in Gaza in 2000 was fake. In 2006 a court initially ruled against the site.

Media-Ratings is a watchdog site. It alleged that the images of a father and son being fired on in Gaza had been staged by a cameraman working for France 2 television. The state broadcaster sued, insisting it had shown the boy being killed.

But the court dismissed the libel case saying the website had "exercised in good faith" the right to criticism.

The pictures of Palestinian boy and his father sheltering from gunfire in Gaza were seen around the world as a symbol of Palestinian suffering under Israeli rule.

France 2's lawyer said the broadcaster would appeal against the latest ruling.
video here.

Some live and some die.

Premature decision

Amillia born
at 21 weeksAmillia born at 21 weeksThe government has just voted to retain the abortion limit at 24 weeks so is it not time to do something about the age at which premature babies are placed in intensive care? The UK has the highest rate of low birthweight babies in western Europe. About 300 babies are born in the UK each year at 23 weeks. In some hospitals, the policy is to not resuscitate babies born at 23 weeks or less. In others, every single baby will be given intensive care. The majority of babies still die at 23 weeks and 64% have a serious disability.

All change at Crewe?

Small town revolution?

Peter Cook (sage)Peter Cook (sage)
Crewe and Nantwich, for some people enough has been written on this constituency to last a long time but for others there can never be too much. The former coalition would contain, amongst others, the activists of the political parties that did not do well and the people for whom politics is a closed book. As pointed out many times on this website the number of people interested in politics to the extent that they turn out and vote seems only to go down year on year. These non-voters have taken the comments of the late Peter Cook to heart, he said "don't vote, it only encourages them".

Gordon Brown listens to the people.

Give us our voteGive us our vote

I want a referendum tells us that the Government has hired one of the country's most expensive QCs - Jonathan Sumption - to represent it in the judicial review on the Lisbon Treaty being brought by businessman Stuart Wheeler. Sumption also represented the Government in the Hutton Inquiry into the death of David Kelly and is reported to have charged the Government £800,000 to defend it in a class-action suit brought by Railtrack shareholders. The decision to hire Sumption shows how seriously the Government is taking Stuart Wheeler's case and that it is determined to spend as much of taxpayers' money as necessary to avoid holding the referendum it promised at the last election.

It has also been reported that House of Commons Speaker Michael Martin is preparing to launch a legal counter challenge to Wheeler, arguing that the will of Parliament should not be overridden in the courts.

You can help by donating to Mr Wheeler's case. Information at his website.