Posts Tagged ‘liberty’

No seriously, fuck right off.

After a year of radio silence that is the message I wish to convey.

After the murder of an MP by a deluded fascist nut job, I am heartily sick of the pro-EU hand wringers wheeling out their argument that although they in absolutely no way wish to politicise such a hideous event, if you don’t vote how they want then you’re some form of sexist racist homophobic fascist who probably gases immigrant kittens for kicks.

So my message to them is simple.
Fuck off. When you’ve finished fucking off, fuck off some further.

How dare you equate extremists with people who have perfectly legitimate concerns about the political tyranny overtaking the EU and wish to think globally instead. How dare you try to use sympathy for a bereaved family to support a purely political agenda to support a regime that usurps elected governments to impose technocratic puppet leaderships.

Of course any right minded person feels utterly terrible for the grieving family. Same as for every murdered policeman, teacher, nurse or even *gasp* an unemployed person. I don’t see their families getting calls from Obama or parliament recalled? The only people reacting differently are the political establishment and Westminster echo chamber that are suddenly faced with some of the shit the rest of the electorate have to deal with.

By all means vote however you want. In or out, don’t care. It’ll make little difference. Want to try and convince me one way or the other? Feel free. Try and propagandise an act of terror or murder and claim unless I agree with you I’m as bad? Fuck right off.

Oh, almost forgot. May contain profanities.

Scotland eh?

Grim up north...

Grim up north…


Now obviously this was written before the referendum, so maybe it’s all proved pointless (they remained in the UK) or maybe the worst fears have come to pass (a dead heat). But given the bile now being spewed by both sides north of the wall you’d expect me to have a view wouldn’t you? (even though not scottish)

So should Jockistan be an independent country?

Simple premise isn’t it but there is so much at stake, so much given as a reason either to support or oppose the idea. So much bullshit or denying the obvious.

So on the hot topics…
Will they keep the £? Well, if they want to. There is absolutely nothing to stop them using it. They can use any currency they like, they could use euros, dollar or doubloons to be honest. What they cannot realistically expect is currency union, to have their financial and banking system continue to be underwritten by the UK taxpayers. So in continuing to use the £ they cede all fiscal power to an unaccountable authority in another country.

Will they save the NHS? Even the fraction they already run north of the wall is monolithic and nigh unsteerable. There will be hard decisions ahead. It will cost more in the future, treatments will cost more and they will lose economies of scale and the ability to send people south easily for treatment – after all will the UK NHS want to be seen using scarce funding subsidising NuScotland?

Will they be more prosperous? There is oil, gas and whisky. But as capital flight takes hold there will be an impact on the financial industry. Shipbuilding will suffer as the UK MPs will find it hard to justify spending defence budgets in foreign countries instead of supporting local economies.

Will they stay in NATO? They claim to want to do so, but want all nuclear weapons removed as “they are abhorrent”. Seems a bit rich to want the protection and membership of an organisation dedicated to a mutual nuclear deterrent, but refuse to contribute and indeed cause all manner of problems for the existing members. Tricky…

Will they get to stay in the EU? They say they can join immediately. The actual members of the EU say different. Hard to see how you can force a club to let you join against members will. Many countries have independence movements of their own they are dealing with and the realpolitik is that they will make it as hard as they can for NuScotland to join, so they will be forced to accept Schengen, Euro, EU financial controls etc..

So from all these you may think I’m against the proposal. After all as the UK we have achieved much, defeated tyranny, lead the abolition of slavery, created the NHS, created a welfare state to envy of the world, lead the world in industrial and scientific innovation. All of these from a union of nations not a conquest.

But I’m not. Not a single one of the topics above actually matters. I hope they vote yes, go their own way and stand on their kilted legs.
Why?
Mainly because it’s democratic. It moves power away from the centre towards those that foot the bill for it all.
Because it promotes equality. Those left in the UK will not longer faced with scottish MPs who helped give us tuition fees and social care costs whilst all the time helping their constituents avoid them.
Because I’m tired of England being the whipping boy for all Scotlands issues. I’m sure like any politician they’ll blame the last administration. But they’ll no longer have an easy excuse.
Because if they remain, they will now be privileged members of the union. Bribed with others taxes with a greater say, greater funding per head and protected positions.

Finally because it’ll be the beginning.
We will see more clamour for accountability. Wales & NI may well want more of a say in how they are run. England certainly will, and perhaps the regions of England.
Will this effect our global standing? Probably. So what? Why does it matter if we can tell other countries what to do? The first duty of the government is security of the nation, not governing other nations.

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So the War on TeenagersTM continues. Now apparently they should have to wait until 19 before being allowed to drive having passed a test at least as difficult as that every other driver took. The reason of course, safety. Younger drivers are more likely to have an accident.

No shit sherlock!

Younger people lack experience. In every facet of life. The only way they gain it is by living. By segregating and singling them out we isolate them. Do not be surprised when society grants young adult less rights than everyone else that they decide society can collectively go f**k itself.

We already grant them less right to a minimum wage, we make special laws to limit their liberty, we limit their access to the benefit system and make them dependent on parents who have no legal obligation to support them for their higher education.

In short we treat them like second class citizens. All the while they are forced to pay the same rate of tax and have the same legal responsibilities as an adult.

But they are more likely to hurt themselves and others people cry! Maybe. But so are older drivers, those that have drink driving convictions, or those simply driving in rural areas. Should we impose restrictions on these groups as well? Or is it simpler to single out the young simply because a) they cannot vote until the first election after their 18th birthday and b)tend not to vote anyway?

If we are to ban anything dangerous then why stop there? Smoking should be banned entirely. Dangerous sports? Best get rid of them. How about things that cause high blood pressure like pontificating sound bite seeking politicians? Well, I think most of us can agree on that one…

For the record. I am not a teenager. Sadly I am far from my teens. I don’t even particularly like teens. But when we treat one section of society as deserving of less rights than the rest of us why should any teen aspire to take part or even respect the society they are presented with? If it were any other part of society I suspect education not restriction would be proposed.

Much internet fun to be had on twitter right now, but belies a serious topic.

Porn Tsar & MP Claire Perry responding to a clamour from Parents, voters, the Daily Mail had touted a plan to force ISPs to filter internet content according to an approved list given by the Ministry of Truth, Government.

This, of course, was all in the name of protecting the kiddies from the Tsunami of filth that lurks online ready to pounce onto unsuspecting 5 year olds and drag them off to be trafficked to BBC DJs.

Adults would be able to opt out of this censorship filtering, but further into the proposed great British firewall plan was the intention to log all search terms and report them to Governemnt agencies.

So why am I against it you surely cry? Why am I happy to sacrifice the innocents upon the alter of liberty?

Well firstly, and simply, it is bullshit. It fails on every point.

It will save exactly zero abuses. Predators do not use google to satisfy their urges. A voluntary filter will not prevent ftp traffic, emails, usb flash drives, or secure connections.

Filtering and blocking websites can be circumvented as any teenager who wishes to pirate music can tell you.

Dozy bint Perry MP conflates perfectly legal porn with images of abuse. Whether your tastes extend to looking at the Daily Mail side bar, or to tamer rude videos the fact remains they are legal. Why should a puritanical MP wheeling out moral bandwagons force you to effectively register to be able to view them? Because that info would never end up on say, a CRB check to become a teacher or foster carer would it?

The issue of child abuse does not require more law. It requires the enforcing of the ones we have. It is already a crime. What it needs is the hard work of coppers supporting to prosecute and punish properly individuals who perpetrate such acts. It is heinous and should not be equated with porn, fetishists or anything else the moral crusaders deem inappropriate on your behalf.

If you want some idea of how technologically literate Perry is, she was advised earlier this week that her own website was insecure.

Lo, and behold! the following day her site was hacked and filled with porn. Not illegal abuse images, just run of the mill smut. This was reported on the political blog Guido Fawkes. It is important to note the word reported there.

Claire Perry immediately took to twitter…

That’s right. She accused him of hosting the porn (actually it was her site doing the hosting), hacking her site, and sponsoring the attack. She then went on to try and bully him into removing the report by threatening his paid work at the Sun

As of now the allegations remain up, despite being asked to remove them. She offered no proof other than her outrage, and she has disappeared off of twitter whilst anyone having passing knowledge of a computer rips into her about not knowing her screen grabs from her hyperlinks. Following a readers poll it appears Guido has instigated legal proceedings over the allegations.

So the upshot? She has probably killed off any chance of her policy making it through. It is just a power grab on the ability to censor the net after all. even a Tory website has torn her to shreds over secret plans to exaggerate ISP success at filtering. The real responsibility for looking after children lies where it always has done. With parents. As I have remarked before, if you wouldn’t let your kids talk in the streets with a stranger, or chat on their mobile with a stranger in the dead of night, why do you think it is ok to let them do it on a computer?

Your children, your responsibility

So few last words. First up this was ISP Andrews and Arnolds response to the prospect of China like censorship of the net in the UK
selection

and finally, apparently this may be Claire Perry MP briefing her tech team about the internet

After Phorm and Prism that we know about, do you really trust the politicians to tell you what you can read?

In this case I’m thinking of 16 and 17 year olds. Not in that way you dirty minded sods… But a few things about on how we give them such a raw deal. It’s no wonder they’re pissed off and angry. They have every right to be as far as I can tell.

Essentially we demand they act like adults, we heap the responsibility of adulthood upon them, except when it comes to considering their opinion. So they can join the armed forces, they can accept the responsibility of parenthood and marriage, they can have what little they manage to earn pillaged by the taxman under threat of force. But when it comes to considering them as a person in the own right? No vote, the means test for their eligibility to access funds for education depends on their parents – not on whether their parents are willing to pay mind you. They aren’t entitled to a full minimum wage, they do not receive the same consideration for emergency housing. Basically we shit on them.

As someone whose late teens were somewhat strained I sympathise with them greatly, I was lucky and had great friends to help me out and look out for me, not all are so fortunate. We should either grant them the full protection and support that children are entitled to, or better yet treat them as adults. Grant them the respect any other adult would demand, consider them as a person in their own right not simply an extension of their parents. Maybe then we would actually have the right to expect them to behave as such.

Right. I suspect there will be some offensive language on this post, consider yourself warned.

Gay marriage is in the news. Apparently some MPs (mainly old, male and tory) are dead against the sort of shenanigans that some MPs (mainly old, male and tory) get up to becoming recognised in law. So they’re tabling amendments to try and wreck the passage of the bill to allow gay marriage.

“It’s wrong!” the exclaim, “unnatural”, “it will undermine the sanctity of marriage” and off course my favourite “against [deity of choice here]’s will”

So here’s my issue. What the flying fuck has it got to do with anyone else whether two consenting adults who love each other and want to make a commitment recognised in law to each other do?

What gives these self important twats the right to decide how others live? Don’t agree with gay marriage, fine, don’t fucking get one. I don’t agree with lots of things. Guess what? I don’t do them. I do not get to impose my values on everyone else. (Otherwise I could beat boy bands to death).

If you seek to impose your values on others you better have some damn good evidence. Not just a book of fairy tales, but evidence. It will not undermine marriage. I’m married (yes really!) and guess what will happen to our marriage the day following gay marriage being permitted? Nothing. Not a fucking thing. I will still be as happy and in love as ever, I suspect I will still get moaned at for not doing the washing up/hoovering/leaving pants on the floor. The only difference is that I may get an invite to more weddings.

If the whole idea makes you uneasy, uncomfortable or outraged. Guess whose problem that it? Yours and yours alone. Stop making it others. Stop making excuses for being a bigot. Live your life how you want and do others the same courtesy.

…and if your imaginary friend tells you it’s wrong then tell him/her/it to come see me and I’ll tell them to stop being a bigoted homophobic prick as well.

now to lighten the mood, here’s George Takei being far more eloquent, humourous and forgiving than I can manage.

So Google “do evil” according to self anointed head of the tax inquisition Margaret Hodge MP. They did after all pay only £2.3m corporation tax on a £3.2bn turnover in the UK. Seems a bit dodgy I think we can all agree.

Two things here, I’ll start with the hypocrisy first, and there is an MPs expense list sized shitload of it.

Hodge is a shareholder in steel company Stemcor. Her family company (which include trusts and holding in the name of her children in order to avoid inheritance tax) latest accounts show that the business paid tax of just £163,000 on revenues of £2.1bn in 2011. Less than 1/100 of 1%. There are of course spluttered excuses that the company pays all the tax it owes under law and that she has no direct control (since she put it in trusts and her sprogs names to avoid even more tax)

If you really want to choke on your conrflakes you can see her excuses trotted out here. (Students of body language, enjoy!)

or here

After all she is on record as saying “The tax you owe is a duty. It’s an obligation.”.

So here’s my second point.

They both obey the law. Maybe not the moral one we’d all like to see followed, but I suspect they have an army of highly paid accountants ensuring they follow the letter of the law. Like MPs who scammed the system, like public sector chiefs who pack remuneration boards with cronies, technically they have done nothing wrong.

And who drafted the laws? Who decided on one of the most complicated tax codes in the world? MPs. Especially those that seem to have an interest in the countries taxation system. MPs like the Queen of hypocrisy Hodge.

So before she drags more companies in to try and embarrass them into voluntarily filling up the exchequer, Companies that employ people who actually pay income tax, national insurance, VAT, fuel tax, council tax, inheritance tax & capital gains tax to name just a few (and so unlike her and the rest of her scumbag colleagues) Maybe Hodge ought to have a long hard look at herself and her holdings in tax avoiding Stemcor.

After all if it’s so bad, then why isn’t there a law against it, or if it is why isn’t it enforced?

Do you have the freedom to restrict others freedoms?

That in essence is the case before the Human rights courts. Can religion be grounds to insist or refuse on behaviour in the workplace.

It is unfortunate that they seem to have swept up several cases into one as they are very different. But I think boil down to this. Are you free to give offence or can you stop someone offending you?

First up is the wearing of crosses or religious symbols. Work places prevent them on the grounds it may offend someone. As long as it doesn’t interfere with your work or constitute a hazard, and breaks no laws what’s the real problem? If someone wants to be offended by the sight of them – Vampires for instance – then they should of course free to do so.

By the same token refusing to carry out work because the customer offends you. For example Islington Council registrar Ms Ladele who refused to conduct same-sex civil partnership ceremonies. She is free to believe what she likes but not to be employed by all the taxpayers but to refuse to carry out work for those that personally offend her. Fine, be offended, and do the work you are paid for. You do not have the right to make the world fit your views. She does of course have the freedom to leave and seek other employment.

Of course in a court of law if any of the applicants can supply evidence that their particular brand of fairy tale nonsense is actually true then the courts should listen. But I guess we’re not expecting any breakthroughs there are we?

+++UPDATE+++
Bloody hell. Sense prevailed.
The court took my advice on each and every case!

So, an update.

Following the hiring of Buddy Ed at Cleveland Plod I thought it would be interesting to see if the new Commissioner did in fact follow the rules in his first decision.

According to the act he referenced in his report he should have proposed the appointment of Buddy Ed to the Police and Crime Panel and awaited their response (to be within 3 weeks of the submitted proposal), at which point he can either accept or ignore their report. Given that he sacked the previous Chief exec and gave Buddy Ed the job in less than a week from winning the election this all seems a bit unlikely…

Anyway. I emailed the Chair of the Police and Crime Panel at Stockton on Tees Borough Council, Councillor Norma Stephenson

Cllr Stephenson
I am emailing you in your capacity as Chair of the Cleveland Police and Crime Panel following Cllr Harringtons recent “tweet” regarding the same. (https://twitter.com/cllrharrington)
Following the information he linked to I read the report by PCC Coppinger regarding the recent appointment of a new Chief Executive (Mr Ed Chicken) for the police authority in which he references the requirement of The Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011, Schedule 1, paragraph 9.

The PCC neglects to reference section 10 of the same schedule http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2011/13/schedule/1/enacted
(copied for reference)

Section 10
(1)This paragraph applies if a police and crime panel is notified under paragraph 9 of a proposed senior appointment.
(2)The panel must review the proposed senior appointment.
(3)The panel must make a report to the commissioner on the proposed senior appointment.
(4)The report must include a recommendation to the police and crime commissioner as to whether or not the candidate should be appointed.
(5)The panel must comply with sub-paragraphs (2) to (4), within the period of three weeks beginning with the day on which the panel receives the notification from the commissioner of the proposed senior appointment.
(6)The panel must publish the report to the commissioner made under this paragraph.
(7)It is for the panel to determine the manner in which the recommendation is to be published in accordance with sub-paragraph (6).

Given that the PCC was elected on the 16th Nov, and that he confirmed to the BBC on the 22nd Nov (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tees-20443895) that he had appointed Mr Chicken can you confirm that the Police and Crime Panel scrutinised the firing of Mr Pudney and hiring of Mr Chicken in accordance with the Act? Can you confirm that the Panel was given sufficient notice to examine the PCCs required notification (section 9) and produced a report in accordance with Schedule 1, section 10 of the act? Could you inform me as to the date of the meeting this decision was scrutinised at, where the report was published in accordance with Section 10 para 6 and if possible provide a link to the minutes?

You would think it would be fairly simple to remember if you chaired a meeting in the last 3 weeks regarding the controversial appointment of the brand new Commissioners Buddy Ed?

Apparently not. Although the reply was very quick, it consisited of…

I have forwarded your email to #### ####. Head of Law and Democracy at Stockton Borough Council.
Councillor Norma Stephenson.

We shall see what comes next!

Big news apparently!
Homophobe and unelected Bishop, son of lady Williams of Elvel, long time oil exec and product of bastions of privilege Eton and Trinity college Cambridge, Justin Welby, to become head of unelected and tax evading cult!

Of course those who claim he was elected are technically right, although despite heading an organisation that profits from centuries of tax breaks and state funding you were not offered a vote, in fact the selection panel consisted of

  • Chair – the Rt Hon the Lord Luce KG, GCVO
  • The Reverend Canon Clare Edwards, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • Mr Aiden Hargreaves-Smith – Diocese of London – elected by General Synod to serve as member of the Commission for a five year period
  • Mr Raymond Harris, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • Professor Glynn Harrison – Diocese of Bristol – elected by General Synod to serve as member of the Commission for a five year period
  • Mrs Mary Johnston – Diocese of London – elected by General Synod to serve as member of the Commission for a five year period
  • Mr David Kemp, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • The Most Revd Dr Barry Morgan, Primate of The Church in Wales, elected by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion
  • The Rt Revd James Newcome, the Bishop of Carlisle – elected by House of Bishops
  • The Very Revd Andrew Nunn – Diocese of Southwark – elected by General Synod to serve as member of the Commission for a five year period
  • The Rt Revd Michael Perham, the Bishop of Gloucester – elected by House of Bishops
  • The Reverend Canon Mark Roberts, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • Mrs Caroline Spencer, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • The Revd Canon Peter Spiers – Diocese of Liverpool – elected by General Synod to serve as member of the Commission for a five year period
  • The Revd Canon Glyn Webster – Diocese of York – elected by General Synod to serve as members of the Commission for a five year period
  • The Right Reverend Trevor Willmott, elected from the Diocese of Canterbury by their Vacancy in See Committee
  • In addition, the Archbishops’ Secretary for Appointments( Ms Caroline Boddington), ), the Prime Minister’s Appointments Secretary (Sir Paul Britton) and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion (Revd Canon Kenneth Kearon) are non-voting members of the Commission

In fact much the opposite; You are not permitted any say on the running of his organisation which benefits from state acquiescence on a massive scale, yet since he was appointed to the house of lords he gets to vote on acts of the house and was even appointed to Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards in 2012.
Good to know that we’re moving forward into the 21st century on the whole accountability, transparency and equality things isn’t it?

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