…Because a backbiting and disingenuous woman has got her comeuppance.
High Court: Sally Bercow’s Lord McAlpine tweet was libel
A tweet published by Sally Bercow about Tory peer Lord McAlpine was libellous, the High Court has ruled.
The wife of Commons Speaker John Bercow tweeted two days after BBC Newsnight wrongly linked a “leading Conservative politician” to sex abuse claims.
Amid widespread speculation about his identity, she wrote: “Why is Lord McAlpine trending. *innocent face*.”
Her claim that this blatant innuendo was merely a factual enquiry was always an insult to the intelligence of anyone who heard it. But should there be an offence of libel at all?
Another US state has legalised gay marriage. Am I supportive? Well I am happy the state is not prohibiting people from marrying whomsoever they wish but… no, I am not delighted because it just compounds an existing error by extending state sanctioning of marriage to even more people.
My problem is not that homosexual people can now get married but rather that another golden opportunity to get the state out of the marriage business completely has been missed. If two people get married, it is the businesses of those two people and NO ONE ELSE. For all I care people can ‘marry’ anyone who can reasonably bind themselves to a contractual relationship and say “I do” .
The only win-win solution is that people stop accepting the state has any right whatsoever to ‘sanction’ marriage between two consenting people. That means people can regard themselves as married if they both agree and to hell with what anyone else thinks… and if others choose not to accept that those two (or three or four) people are married, due to whatever prejudices they subscribe to, well that is purely their business too.
It is hard to know where to begin. This story has everything. Facepalm-inducing levels of stupidity; obviously unworkable policies; nannying; doctors who would rather control people than patch them up; meaningless statistics; government interference in minutiae; this old chestnut:
Ministers have suggested that if companies fail to sign up to the Responsibility Deal voluntarily the government could legislate to force them to act.
So far these are plans “seen by The Telegraph” to introduce more control over food by, say, making biscuits smaller. In a sane world it will never happen but it is an insight into the direction that those in power would like to see things go. I have noticed how quickly what once would have seemed unbelievable can become normal: would a smoker on a plane in 1998 have believed it would be banned in pubs nine years later?
What are some of the most common misconceptions you encounter from non-gun owners? Do you identify, politically, with other gun owners? Do you feel misrepresented by the media? Tell us and we’ll feature your responses on the Guardian.
The UK version of the Huffington Post reports that Ukip’s ‘NRA-Esque’ Gun Control Comments Described As ‘Inaccurate Upsetting Drivel’. Furthermore, advises the author of the piece, Felicity A Morse,
Farage’s support for relaxed gun control is particularly controversial given there is a cross-party consensus that restricting firearms helps reduce gun crime and protects communities.
Emphasis added. Consider yourselves warned.
When I read this…
A supermarket chain has withdrawn bags of nuts – after failing to declare they may contain peanuts. The Food Standards Agency issued an allergy alert saying the presence of peanuts was not declared on Booths’ own brand packets of monkey nuts. [...] Booths technical manager Waheed Hassan said: “It is our responsibility as retailers to accurately record allergy advice. [...] In a statement, the supermarket said it had identified the labelling error and issued a warning to customers.
“If you have an allergy to peanuts, please do not consume this product and return it to your local store for a full refund. No other products are affected by this issue and we sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused.”
So the packets of nuts labelled as… nuts… are being recalled for not telling people allergic to nuts not to eat the nuts.
I would have much preferred if Mr. Waheed Hassan had instead issued the following statement:
“If you are allergic to nuts, do not buy anything labelled as… nuts. And if you do, then either you are illiterate or cannot read English, in which case an additional label telling you not to eat the nuts that you are allergic to from this packet labelled as… nuts… would not help.
But then again, anyone suffering from a nut allergy eating from a packet labelled… nuts… and which, when you open them and see them prior to stuffing them into your gaping maw, look exactly like the… nuts… that you are allergic to, well, such a person is so stupid that we feel that we are providing a public service assisting with their choice to remove themselves from the gene pool. No need to thank us and remember to always shop at Booths! Kthxby.”
But sadly, he did not say that.
Dave is going to wake up one morning and find that the Conservative Party website, and any other right-of-centre source of information, is going to be shut away behind an “Over-18″ “hate-and-porn” firewall and he will be too stupid to work out what happened.
- Samizdata commenter Rob
Say it ain’t so! Accountancy firms ‘use knowledge of Treasury to help rich avoid tax’ – MPs
Margaret Hodge, the PAC’s chair, said the actions of the accountancy firms were tantamount to a scam and represented a “ridiculous conflict of interest” which must be stopped. “The large accountancy firms are in a powerful position in the tax world and have an unhealthily cosy relationship with government,” she said, calling for the Treasury to stop accepting their staff to draw up new tax laws.
In other news, Margaret Hodge called for tighter regulation of the consumer credit industry… civil service procurement… welfare to work schemes… academies… and tax avoidance… and Guardian commenters demanded tighter regulation of the press.
Remember citizens, Get real – get regulated.
The dismal David Cameron wants to block people from accessing ‘porn’ from WiFi in public places and ‘semi-public’ places. Which presumably means all WiFi as almost every WiFi in the world is capable of being picked up in a ‘public’ place, such as the side walk in front of your house.
And the usual coercion addicted statists will smile and nod that ‘the children’ are being protected. And once the slope has been created, these are the people who will be working to make it as slippery as possible.
So of course once the notion that protecting ‘the children’ from stumbling across porn is accepted, next will be protecting them from seeing ‘hate speech’… and then from anything that is held not to be in ‘the public interest’. Held by who? Why by people like them, of course.
It is not about porn, it is about control. It always is.
Taking offence cannot be equated to being criminally victimised.
- “Cannot” as in: “should not”. Sadly, they just did. That’s Richard Carey, writing at Libertarian Home about the disappearance of the blog and twitter feed of Old Holborn, and other twitter accounts, for the crime of being “inappropriate and offensive”.
After Hurricane Sandy struck last fall, “Today” reporter Jeff Rossen did an exposé on how some contractors were “preying on” homeowners. How? By performing repair work without the proper licenses. Rossen found several contractors who lacked home-improvement licenses, but only one consumer who had been taken advantage of – and that was two months before Sandy struck. His big story boiled down to the fact that some Sandy-related tree removal and home repair work was carried out without prior government permission.
But wait – does Rossen have a license to practice journalism? Does he think journalists should be licensed? I reached out to Rossen by email. “What can I do for you?” he wrote back. But when I put those questions to him, he never responded – much like the unlicensed contractors he caught on camera. How scandalous!
- A. Barton Hinkle
Let’s not kid ourselves, because the end of money, as we know it, really means the beginning of the transactional surveillance State, which makes this a serious debate about the boundaries of State power and the dignity of an individual.
Unfortunately, the real world extends beyond Wolman’s polite corner of Oregon.
There are activists and dissidents in hostile regions paying for Internet blogs, food supplies, and safe harbor. There are payments being made to border guards on a daily basis to flee a murderous government somewhere. There are women selling baskets and blankets at street markets to feed their hungry families. There are cancer patients buying weed from a friend if their state doesn’t accommodate medical marijuana. And even before and after the Third Reich, persecuted peoples have always needed a way to protect and transfer what little remained of their wealth.
The persistent war on cash has more to do with moralistic society than it does with civil society as Wolman claims. With ultimate tracking capabilities, how does Wolman decide when a government’s “right” becomes a wrong? Does he defend the victimless crime laws against online gambling and consensual sex for money between adults? Does he defend confiscation of private sector wealth when a socialistic regime runs out of funds? Does he defend an orchestrated payments blockade against whistleblower site Wikileaks? Does he defend brutal government law enforcement measures in Syria and Gaddafi’s Libya?
Anonymity and civil society do mix — it is omnipotent violent government and civil society that do not mix.
- Jon Matonis