Thursday, February 10, 2011

God's Above The Devil Yet

MPs have overwhelmingly voted to keep the ban on prisoners voting, in defiance of a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights. The House of Commons' decision is not binding, but could put pressure on ministers to go against the Strasbourg court's decision. MPs backed a motion opposing the move by a 234 to 22 - a majority of 212.

Only one thing I want to know now. Who are the 22 traitors ?

UPDATE : here (thanks Liam)

Lib Dims
Beith, Alan (Berwick)
Reid, Alan (Argyll and Bute)
Foster, Don (Bath)
Hughes, Simon (Bermondsey)
Williams, Stephen (Bristol W)
Huppert, Julian (Cambridge)
Munt, Tessa (Wells)
Brake, Tom (Carshalton)
Hames, Duncan (Chippenham)

Gardiner, Barry (Brent North)
McDonnell, John (Hayes)
Qureshi, Yasmin (Bolton SE)
Green, Kate (Stretford)
Jackson, Glenda (Hampstead)
Love, Andrew (Edmonton)
McCarthy, Kerry (Bristol)

Bottomley, Peter (Worthing)

Lucas, Caroline (Brighton Cottage)

Plaid Cymru
Williams, Hywel (Arfon)
Edwards, Jonathan (Carmarthen E)
Llwyd, Elfyn (Merioneth)

Hermon, Sylvia (North Down)

Tellers :
Jeremy Corbyn (Labour, Islington)
Lorely Burt (Lib Dim, Solihull - a former prison assistant governor)


That this House notes the ruling of the European Court of Human Rights in Homicidal Axe Killer v. the United Kingdom in which it held that there had been no substantive debate by members of the legislature on the continued justification for maintaining a general restriction on the right of prisoners to vote; acknowledges the treaty obligations of the UK; is of the opinion that legislative decisions of this nature should be a matter for democratically-elected lawmakers; and supports the current situation in which no prisoner is able to vote except those imprisoned for contempt, default or on remand.

Interesting voting pattern in the 'nay' (i.e. against the resolution) camp.

1) Inner city MPs from vibrant, hi-diversity areas looking to attract the vitally important criminal demographic. Mostly Labour.
2) a cluster round Bristol/Bath/Chippenham/Wells - mostly Lib Dim
3) Lib Dims - more voted nay than Labour MPs. Split between the old rural, low-crime non-conformist heartlands, and SWPL, low-crime, low-diversity towns (Cambridge, Wells, Chippenham)
4) Plaid Cymru - again, rural, low-crime, formerly-nonconformist areas.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Dirty Laundry

I could have sworn at some time in the not too distant past I blogged about the woes of lefty blogger Tim 'Bloggerheads' Ireland. Maybe I just expressed my support at this Peter Risdon post, which explains how he's being targeted by an anonymous and untrue smear campaign, and gives some background, and at Pickled Politics, where the comment exchanges between Tim Ireland and Iain Dale give a flavour of the whole sorry saga*.

Mr Ireland seemed convinced that the abuse was in some way controlled by certain Tories - or at least that they had the power to call the dogs off. He asked them to call off said dogs, and pretty much as one they said 'We're sorry to hear about this but it's really nowt to do with us".

Naturally one can draw one of two conclusions :

i) the MPs and Tories concerned are telling the truth and ain't got a clue
ii) they are hiding what (and who) they know

He seems to have gone for option ii. I read at Chick Yog's :

The clock’s ticking for the Tories

Go and read Tim Ireland’s open letter to Steve Hilton, the director of strategy for David Cameron.

And then count down to the deadline. If Tim doesn’t get satisfaction – and soon – for the years of grief certain Tories have put him through, he’s going to start publicly airing some pretty dirty Conservative laundry**. I’d say he’s been patient enough already.

“I will have such revenges on you both,
That all the world shall –I will do such things —
What they are, yet I know not: but they shall be
The terrors of the earth! ”

Call me cynical, but I’d have thought that if he had any ‘smoking gun’ evidence which would reflect badly on the Tories he’d have used it by now regardless of any ongoing feuds or lack thereof. He's a left blogger, and that's what they do. Nowt wrong with it.

I did take a look and couldn’t see much except a repetition of all the ‘he said she said’ stuff as before, plus a few new pokes at Nadine Dorries’ expenses, which I imagine he’d have published even if no one had ever made unpleasant and untrue anonymous allegations about him online.

Oh, and there’s a new variety of potato called ‘Nadine’, with exceptionally smooth skin. He's got photos of it ! He gets very cross if people use words like stalking or harassment, it's just fair political comment…

In their own unique ways, Tim Ireland and Nadine continue to provide ammunition for those who think ill of them. Nadine has further to fall, and seems an impulsive creature, so much as I love her it’s always possible that she might come a cropper one day. Maybe Mr Ireland will be her nemesis, who can tell?

She’s the kind of woman who 150 years ago would have had an opera written about her. In my production Tim Ireland would be played by Antony Sher.

* the exact details of which, including his history of conflict with said Tories, life is just too short to go into - reminding me of those posts by the Policeman or Inspector Gadget where Kayleigh off the estate wants something done about the texted abuse she's getting from her ex Dave, just because of the texts she sent to his new partner Jade etc ... if you really want the full horror may I recommend this feed. Draw your own conclusions.

** if he's got any of one MP's dirty laundry, there's only one place to send it.

A Small Post

At Biased-BBC.

And something that made me smile, also at Biased-BBC.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Quote of the Week

Ed West, on the news that the US are running 'anti-extremist' operations in the UK, and our obligation to celebrate diversity :

According to the local council, “Leicester has a reputation for welcoming and celebrating diversity” and “the residents of Leicester recognise that the city is both multi-ethnic, multi-cultural and multi-faith”. The latter is a tellingly un-enthusiastic phrase. I recognise that I’m not going to ever be confused for Johnny Depp or afford a house in Hampstead, but I wouldn’t “celebrate” the fact, unless you call smashing an empty whisky bottle across the room while listening to Joy Division at 2 in the morning “celebrating”.