A PETITION WORTH SIGNING AT LAST
Towards the end of the Leveson ‘overview’ document, I wrote to say that his Boredship’s Enquiry felt like one of those football games where your team is 2-0 up with three minutes to go, and then loses 5-2. What started out as a laudable go at curtailing the unelected media proprietor’s power to corrupt cops, hacks and politicians ended with a demand by Leveson to shoot every third blogger.
Later still – as I revealed yesterday – what started as an attempt by many to silence the lies of the few has since turned up as a grubby attempt by the Justice Minister to draft a McAlpine’s Charter designed to make it easy and cheap for unmasked bad guys to sue shoestring good guys investigating their nefarious ways.
Last night I got emailed by the socio-ecological lobbying group 38 Degrees. In their case, a Bill originally hailed as an attempt to cut down business lobbying with munneeee has miraculously morphed into an attempt to force through the Lords a travesty that affects about 1% (seriously) of such monsters, but tries to gag the 38 Degrees of this world for four months before every general election.
As you know I never sign petitions, but being inconsistent I signed this one, for two simple reasons: first, it is at last an attempt at organised citizen power with its head fitted on the right way round – ie, looking ahead to a dark future not back to 1932; and second, because the penny has finally dropped for me about what the Coalition is.
The Coalition is no longer a Government. The Coalition is a business and finance run political power machine designed and staffed to eradicate all freedoms to protest, and genuine consultation processes, one by one. Its modus operandi include subterfuge, obfuscation, smiling insincerely, manipulated press reporting, and above all bare-faced lies. There is no constitutional process for which these wreckers have any respect whatsoever.
That promising Coalition between Smiley Nick and Call Me Dave has gradually dropped its mask of well meaning compromise, and is now revealed – devoid of guilt or remorse – as good governance eaten alive by spiteful and monied dictatorial Far Right politics. Red Riding Hood’s grandma really is the wolf after all.
I’m not a fluffy Human Rights fan, nor am I particularly fond of Paul Staines (Guido Fawkes), but when a campaign to stop the gagging of protest manages to unite both of them, you know something’s badly awry.
One of the main things that’s badly awry about the Bill is that incompetence magnet Andrew Lansley is in charge of ensuring its passage – and is one of its architects. This is the man who swung an anarchic demolition ball at the NHS and missed, and was thus replaced by Jeremy Berkeley-Hunt.
You can sign the 38 Degrees petition here. It isn’t committing you to support either quirky libertarianism or open-toed shoes, but merely to defend your right to not like something, and say so publicly – so long as you do it in a manner that doesn’t infringe the rights of others.
You’re really doing nothing but say you support the concept of liberal democracy. Odd to have to do this in the Home of its modern incarnation, but that’s Cruel Britannia for you.
And if, by the way, you want a taster of what Government of, by and for the Powerful People would be like, read yesterday’s Drivel of the Day featuring Harry Mount of the Telegraph. Uneffingbelievable.