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While we’re at it, why not gas the dog?

Mark Meechan a.k.a. “Count Dankula”, the man who imperilled us all by making a funny video of a little dog lifting its paw like a Nazi salute, has been found guilty of a crime under the Communications Act 2003 at Airdrie Sheriff Court.

If we are handing out punishments to obvious non-Nazis for doing stuff that reminds people of Nazis I don’t see why that Seig-Heiling pug should get away scot-free.

47 comments to While we’re at it, why not gas the dog?

  • James Hargrave

    Perhaps the raised arm gesture is reserved for torchlight processions through Charlotte Sq at which Miss Stir-fry can take the salute from the nationalist throng.

  • Prosecutors accused Meechan of posting material that was ‘anti-semitic and racist in nature’ and was aggravated by religious prejudice.

    Would I be right in guessing that Mr Meechan’s ‘religious’ prejudice that so aggravated his offence in the eyes of the court was not of an islamic nature, but rather in fact an ‘irreligious’ prejudice?

    I expect you can guess a related guess I’m making – that his tasteless joke might have got even less pushback than peace-girl’s tweet if it had been.

    In a tweet on Tuesday, Meechan confirmed he had been convicted, later adding that he is due to be sentenced in April.

    But not on April 1st, unfortunately – especially if the clemency appropriate to Easter Sunday is to be withheld. Perhaps Friday the 13th of April will be the day chosen.

  • Mr Ed

    The dog was only following orders.

    The judge was only following the law.

  • Paul Marks

    Another comment vanishes – very vexing, but I will try and repeat it.

    I do not know why people are shocked by such events – after all rights are “nonsense” and natural rights are “nonsense of stilts” (Jeremy Benthem – the 13 Departments of state controlling most aspects of life person). Freedom of Speech is just silliness (as far as the esblishnment elite are concerned – they made that clear as long ago as 1965 and there have been statures since then) – what matters is the greatest happiness of the greatest number, to defined by the ruling elite.

    When the leaders of “Britain First” (and no I do not agree with their policies) declared that some Islamists were child rapists, the people from “Britain First” were sent to prison – “but Paul – the Islamists were child rapists” – so what? Truth is not a defence in a modern court. Modern judges and “educated” juries could not care less about truth – or about the principles of the Common Law.

    For remember, even if this comic in Scotland actually was a Nazi and had taught his dog to salute Adolf Hitler out of real devotion to the National Socialist cause, this would NOT be a crime as the Common Law understands the concept – no person has been robbed or beaten, expressing an opinion or making a joke is NOT a crime. But to the modern elite IT IS A CRIME.

    It is later than most people know.

    David Hume mused (without really caring either way) about the “euthansia of the constitution” – this has now happened. There were a network of Constitution Clubs in Britain, there are some buildings that still have the name “Constitution Club” – but the unwritten British Constitution is DEAD.

  • Zerren Yeoville

    If animals have rights, then presumably they must also have responsibilities and can be held to account for their actions. By this standard, it would therefore be perfectly in order for the dog to be punished.

    There are those who would say that this would represent a regression to medieval times, when animals were frequently put on trial. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animal_trial

    In a sane world, I would agree, but frankly that ship has already sailed with the PETA ‘Monkey Selfie’ legal case. If PETA are seriously prepared to argue that one animal has the right to be considered the copyright-holder of a photograph taken by itself, and to receive benefits (i.e. publishing royalties) arising therefrom, then it follows that other animals also have the right to be considered responsible for their actions – in this instance, an action perceived as a ‘hate crime’ – and to take the consequences arising therefrom…

    It seems PETA were unaware of the concept of the ‘Law of Unintended Consequences.’

  • pete

    Strange how there is never a shortage of police and state resources for the ever-burgeoning number of alleged hate crimes but never enough when people are mugged, burgled or abused by gangs of sexual predators.

  • Sam Duncan

    Three million people saw the video and not one complained. “Police Scotland” took it upon themselves to prosecute.

    That, frankly, terrifies me. You don’t actually have to offend anyone in order to be charged and convicted for saying something that crosses some arbitrary line for some desk-jockey policeman in an office somewhere in Scotland.

    And yet again, the “Scottish Government” drags the name of my homeland through the mud for all the world to see. They may pat each other on the back and congratulate themselves for the wonderful progressive New Scotland they’re building, but the rest of the world is looking on in bafflement, wondering just what the bloody hellfire is going on in one of the crucibles of the Enlightenment.

  • Strange how there is never a shortage of police and state resources for the ever-burgeoning number of alleged hate crimes but never enough when people are mugged, burgled or abused by gangs of sexual predators. (pete, March 20, 2018 at 10:16 pm)

    As per my recent comment, the natz’ fashionable priorities are strongly reflected in their administration’s allocation of its finite prosecution resources. (Events like the above might move this fact a little more into the public domain.)

  • Julie near Chicago

    Report from the U.S.A.:

    Well well well. I followed the first link in Natalie’s posting to her earlier Samizdata posting on the issue, back in January; and from there to

    UT. com/watch?v=SYslEzHbpus

    Displayed there, this message from UT:

    M8 Yer Dugs A Nazi

    Count Dankula

    Certain features have been disabled for this video
    In response to user reports, we have disabled some features, such as comments, sharing, and suggested videos, because this video contains content that may be inappropriate or offensive to some audiences.

    In the spot where one normally would find a video, there is this further warning:

    The following content has been identified by the YouTube community as inappropriate or offensive to some audiences.

    Beneath it is a button you may click to watch the video, at your peril of course.

    UT does classify it as Comedy.

    I remember seeing that video some time ago, however. (I have no idea of who was the actual uploader.) Among the comments there were some complaints — mostly to the effect of Animal Abuse, I think. Others said, effectively, “It’s a cute little dog, guys, and it’s just a video, get a grip!”

    Which was what I thought at the time. Although now I’m focussed a little more on the tastelessness of it.

    If, after all that, UT has seen fit to put the thing behind an XXX-rating, it seems to me the censorially-minded are gaining ground. Of course, I don’t challenge UT’s right to issue warnings of danger to the public moral fibre. Still, does UT ban clips from Quentin Tarantino’s output? And, yes, what about all those clips of Mr. H., whether historical, adulatory, or comical?

    .

    By the way. I just searched UT on the string ‘ Hitler pug ‘ (without the quotes). Among the first few results:

    Houston-area students give Nazi salute during senior photo
    The Dallas Morning News

    44K views1 year ago

    [Followed link to a 43-sec. video of the proceedings. Description:]

    Seniors taking their class photo outside Cypress Ranch High School reportedly saluted President Donald Trump and yelled Heil Hitler” Tuesday.

    My point? This, and similar, videos are not behind the Wall of Warning….

  • I think there’s a little confusion here about who the fascists are.

  • Nicholas (Unlicenced Joker) Gray

    Obviously the dog is a terrierist, not a fascist!

  • Eric

    Heh. Probably the most famous dog since Laika.

  • JadedLibertarian

    I really don’t like being told what to do. As soon as someone says an idea is so dangerous I cannot be allowed to hear it, I find myself looking more closely at it and re-evaluating its merit.

    When I first heard of Count Dankula, I thought he sounded pretty tasteless. Now that he’s been proscribed, I’m leaning toward his sieg heiling pug being bloody hilarious.

    There was an article in spiked the other week, linked to from here, about the folly of allowing the “far right” (whatever that is) to pose as the only defenders of liberty and free speech. There is some truth in that.

    I’m laughing at more tasteless jokes. There’s a subtle but noticeable shift in some of my opinions from classical liberal to reactionary conservative. This is happening because time and time again I’m being told the sources of these jokes and opinions are verboten, so I look at them more closely. And time and time again, I’m finding they’re not as bad as they said, and I outright agree with them on many things – especially free speech.

    But the thing is, there’s no balance. There aren’t really any left leaning defenders of individual liberty for me to read, and the proverb says all arguments sound reasonable till you hear the rebuttal.

    I’m being pulled in a reactionary conservative direction, and I’m not happy about it. I assume this was not the intention of forbidding such views. Now if I, educated, introspective, and anal enough to self monitor in this fashion detect shifts in my views as a product of this culture war, how much more the lumpen proletariat? Extrapolated to a whole nation we could be headed for a civil war of they don’t knock this nonsense off sharpish.

  • JadedLibertarian

    I neglected to put a winky-face smiley after “lumpen proletariat” and it came off sounding far snootier than I intended.

    It’s not an unreasonable assumption that I’m neither the most sensible and temperate person in the UK, nor the least. Those wiser and more stable than myself will be less affected by the culture war. Those less wise and stable than myself will be chucking bricks and petrol bombs pretty soon.

    This is not a good thing, not least because in all probability they’ll have someone like Tommy Robinson at their head.

  • Teejsaj

    Tommy Robinson is not a thug by any means. If he’s got support from brown British like me, he’s doing something right. He is fighting firmly in the anti-islam camp, nothing to do with race. I don’t know whether he is really a racist, I don’t know what his personal views are, and I don’t really care at this stage – there’s a way more important battle to be won. I can deal with the racists later

  • I’m laughing at more tasteless jokes. There’s a subtle but noticeable shift in some of my opinions from classical liberal to reactionary conservative. This is happening because time and time again I’m being told the sources of these jokes and opinions are verboten, so I look at them more closely. And time and time again, I’m finding they’re not as bad as they said, and I outright agree with them on many things – especially free speech. (JadedLibertarian, March 21, 2018 at 7:39 am)

    One could call this the Trump effect – or, more precisely, the “I’m ready to vote for Trump” effect. I have noticed it in myself and elsewhere. You are not alone, JadedLibertarian, in becoming jaded indeed about the left’s abuse of manners.

  • This is indeed the most frightening aspect of it – how often do we see police excuses for inaction boil down to ‘nobody made a complaint and we need that to act’ yet here, no such thing occurred!

  • Alisa

    I only saw the video yesterday for the first time, and found it generally amusing. I don’t mind the “tastelessness”, as there are many different rungs of humor, and like with everything else I don’t like to limit myself to the high-brow stuff.

    That said, I think that the ostensibly problematic part of the video is not the dog saluting at Hitler’s speech, but the part where Meechan keeps saying ‘Gas the Jews’ – the reason being that unlike the saluting part it is so easy to take out of context. The problem with that though (and the major problem in the wider sense) is the fact that there are people ready and willing to take such things out of their context.

  • Mr Ed

    I took the point of the video being that the Nazis were nasty hence the remark about ‘gassing’ as it is a reminder of how abominable they were, and it re-inforces the ‘joke’ about the dog being a Nazi. I don’t see how it could be taken otherwise. From what I gleaned of the trial, the police found someone to testify about how offensive they found the video, quite why they found it necessary to do that I do not know, but it struck me as if they (or the Crown Office) believed that they had to generate (which might not be quite the same as ‘to manufacture’) some ‘evidence’ that the clip met the test set out in the statute. I would have hoped that the Court would take an objective view of the statute, and the calling of evidence as to the offensive nature of the clip would be an indication of the weakness of the Crown’s case on these facts. The Court could have taken judicial notice of the crimes of the Nazis IMHO. There is nothing in the Act to give any leeway for freedom of speech, and as it is Scotland, the principles of Dr Bonham’s case could not assist, even if it had not been smothered as it is in England by the Blackstone heresy.

    AIUI, the offence is not the making of the video, but the use of a public network to ‘send’ it, under S127 of the Communications Act 2003, and it applies across the United Kingdom, this offence is not the making of the Scottish government, but it is prosecuted by the Scottish Crown under Scots law.

    “127 Improper use of public electronic communications network

    (1) A person is guilty of an offence if he—
    (a)sends by means of a public electronic communications network a message or other matter that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character; or
    (b) causes any such message or matter to be so sent.”

    But really, he hasn’t sent anyone a message or other matter. He has posted something where people may look at it if they wish. There is no ‘person’ receiving an uploaded video, and I would have thought that the whole point of the offence is to make a crime out of, e.g. leaving an answerphone message to tell someone something grossly offensive etc.

  • Duncan S

    (a)sends by means of a public electronic communications network a message or other matter that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character; or
    (b) causes any such message or matter to be so sent.”

    Isn’t that what Russel Brand and Jonathan Ross did when they left messages on Andrew Sachs answering machine?

  • Mr Ecks

    Bemoaning these events is good.

    Far better and more important is to DO something about it.

    I am writing to the MP and have enlisted several friends to do the same. I am also sending an email –tho’ the twat MP ignores those–but he won’t find several letters so easy to ignore followed by a complaint if he does.

    Also writing to Rees- Mogg and to the Tory chairman and the 1922 Committee Chairman. Word is that his knighthood has bought him for the FFC but I doubt that is permanent. A large enough fire under his arse will move him.

    Come on people lets do something this time not just moan. If we take this latest load of shite lying down we deserve what we will get in the future.

  • pete

    At my induction course at a new job in 2006 I was told that offensive speech was not allowed and that offensive speech was something that the hearer considered offensive.

    I told the woman giving us the course that her statement was offensive.

    She said it wasn’t, so contradicting the company’s policy.

  • Thailover

    A man is convicted of offensive dog tricks. The “fascist far right” are fighting for free speech, freedom of thought, freedom of association, and freedom of religion, while APPARENTLY Putin wants Trump to make America great again. Islam is considered a race, and the UK is apparently terrified of the opinions of a skinny little blond girl citizen journalist from Canada.

    They don’t even bother to not sound stupid.

  • Sam Duncan

    And don’t think this was an isolated incident, by the way. The Holyrood Gendarmerie are determined to be the stormtroopers of “social justice”.

    (By the way, I do like that “Call your local police: 101” logo. In Scotland, we don’t have local police any more. My father called 101 a few months ago, after losing a couple of items. He was asked what city he was calling from. Thank goodness for devolution bringing government closer to the people, eh?)

  • Mr Black

    It saddens me that people who argue for liberty and rights do nothing what-so-ever to protect them. If this were a leftist found guilty, there would be protests, political speeches, gofundme pages, media campaigns and the like to reverse this travesty. The right will do nothing.

  • bobby b

    “It saddens me that people who argue for liberty and rights do nothing what-so-ever to protect them.”

    The problem is, in order to do something in this specific situation, one must protest or speak or fund in defense of our absolute right to teach our dog to give a Hitler salute in response to the verbal cue “gas the Jews.”

    It’s an easier leap for the average leftist to go out and agitate for leftist thought, because they always manage to phrase their movements in “unarguable” terms (“save the whales/stop hate/respect diversity”), while defenders of things like free speech and the right to arms must by necessity make arguments that place logic and reason above the lives of cute innocent puppies somewhere.

    I suspect that we’re just not as good at establishing memes and phrasings as are the leftists.

  • Mr Black

    I think it’s more fundamental than that. The left want to smash the system. Operating outside the rules and the law is therefor a necessity and they think nothing of it. The right tends to respect law and tradition, which is a good thing in normal times and a shockingly suicidal thing when the government and the law have become the enemies of the people. We need to be breaking people and things but we don’t have that spark of insubordination.

  • Phil Terry

    So the judge, O’Carrol who came up with this, was like many other Scottish ties to the protection of pedophilia able to clear this doctor. This strange corruption of the police, judiciary and PTP in scotland goes all the way back to the Dunblane school shooter Hamilton who also had pedophilia related links with the police who issued his gun license. It stinks.

  • JadedLibertarian

    I suspect that we’re just not as good at establishing memes and phrasings as are the leftists.

    Everyone knows the left can’t meme. March, shout, break stuff… yes. Make a witty animated gif featuring Darth Vader… no.

    A meme war would certainly be a fun response to this, although I don’t know if it would be all that effective. Filling Nicola Sturgeon’s Twitter feed with memes calling her Emperor Palpatine might have a certain piquancy I suppose…

  • Mr Ecks

    Police Scotland is the centralisation of Scots plod under SNP CM control. It should be no surprise that they fancy themselves CM commissars as that is what the SNP centralised them for.

    Had we a decent PM rather than the FFC , the time is long past for very severe action against the SNP/Scottish Parliament. Devolution is not a licence to recreate East Germany -on-the-Clyde.

  • JadedLibertarian

    I suppose I should start the meme war:

    http://i63.tinypic.com/29g1kdz.jpg

  • Stonyground

    “how often do we see police excuses for inaction boil down to ‘nobody made a complaint and we need that to act’ yet here, no such thing occurred!”

    Next time that they say it you will be able to cite this incident and tell them to get their arses in gear.

    Elsewhere on the web I have seen a poll about whether this guy should have been prosecuted. At the time it was around 98% No, 1% Yes and 1% No opinion.

  • INGSOC? Surely SCOTSOC JadedLibertarian! 😆

  • JadedLibertarian

    The thought did occur to me, but I’m afraid my Photoshop-Fu wasn’t quite good enough for that, Perry 😉

    On the whole though, the SNP cannot deny the accusation of being Big Brother, because it’s true.

    I wonder what would happen if I rustled up a high lumen projector and put that image on the side of Edinburgh castle or Arthur’s seat one night?

    I imagine I’d get arrested for something or other…

  • Mr Ed

    JL,

    There’s photoshop and then there’s ‘passing off’, and that symbol on the picture next to the Dear Leader is clearly a ‘passing off’ by you and the SNP of the Odal rule which happens to have been a ‘trademark’ of sorts of the 7th SS Freiwillige Division Prinz Eugen, just smoothed and inverted. I hope that you can claim ‘fair use’ when the lawyers come calling.

  • JadedLibertarian

    Spooky, Mr Ed. And yet strangely appropriate…

  • Sam Duncan

    “The problem is, in order to do something in this specific situation, one must protest or speak or fund in defense of our absolute right to teach our dog to give a Hitler salute in response to the verbal cue ‘gas the Jews.’”

    Yes, exactly. It’s the very same reason we’re in this mess in the first place. Illiberalism against nastiness is a seductive idea. (Since it’s on my mind, last night I saw someone bemoaning the fact that his government “didn’t have the guts” to make always-online DRM in videogames illegal. Because obviously it should be. It’s nasty. If the government has the power to ban things, surely it has a duty to ban all the nasty things? Stands to reason.)

    “Police Scotland is the centralisation of Scots plod under SNP CM control. It should be no surprise that they fancy themselves CM commissars as that is what the SNP centralised them for.”

    The Nats are always quick to point out that it was the previous Labour administration that proposed nationalizing the Police. But that’s a minor detail. As I’ve always said, Holyrood itself is a nationalist enterprise. Although they’re conflated in the SNP, nationalism and seperatism aren’t the same thing. Nationalism is placing the nation at the centre of public life, and thus preferring national administration over local, let alone none at all (among other things). In power at Holyrood, Labour did this every bit as much as the avowed Nationalists.

    “I wonder what would happen if I rustled up a high lumen projector and put that image on the side of Edinburgh castle or Arthur’s seat one night?”

    If I could afford to, I’d hardly think twice about finding out.

  • JadedLibertarian

    I created a more meme-able version INGSOC is now SCOSOC.

  • Mr Ed

    I created a more meme-able version INGSOC is now SCOSOC.

    That correction will mean you won’t get 20 years in the camps.

    Just 10.

  • Mr Ed (March 22, 2018 at 6:49 pm), JadedLibertarian should be able to get even more years time off by pointing out what a blow the revised image strikes for feminism: ‘big brother’ is now ‘big sister’.

  • Mr Ed

    -1 day, if the last year of 10 is a Leap Year.

    Counter-Revolution in any form is to be dealt with firmly, but justly.

  • Johnathan Pearce (London)

    Jaded Libertarian writes: But the thing is, there’s no balance. There aren’t really any left leaning defenders of individual liberty for me to read, and the proverb says all arguments sound reasonable till you hear the rebuttal.

    That is absolutely correct; one of the strange, and terrible things about today’s age is that if you defend free speech, you are bracketed as some sort of right wing evil nut. How did we get here?

  • Mr Ed

    How did we get here?

    We had the Common Law taken from us, first by the Blackstone heresy, (that Parliament can make any law) and then by Statute, starting in earnest in the 1960s with anti-discrimiantion legislation.

  • Mr Ed

    I should add that this case was in Scotland and under Scots law but a UK-wide statute. The appeal on this case should not go beyond the Scottish High Court of Justiciary on appeal, as the UK’s Supreme Court does not hear appeals on criminal cases from Scotland, although the UK’s Supreme Court appears to have decided that it can, in limited circumstances, consider Scottish criminal law appeals on ‘Human Rights’ and devolution issues.

  • Mr Ed (March 23, 2018 at 1:35 pm), Blackstone recognises (IIRC) that it is a rule of common law that the courts interpret laws made by parliament as laws. Obviously parliament could not (in law) make a law to that effect since it would already have to be the law in order to be a law.

    In “An Appeal from the New to the Old Whigs”, Burke uses similar reasoning to note the constitutional constraints on parliament – while also remarking that the limits of mere power are less easy to define. As our transatlantic cousins have reason to know, things can be very obviously contrary to a far more reified constitution bu, absent sufficient resistance, they can still happen. As others have remarked, sufficient pushback, mocking or otherwise, is needed.

  • […] in the Count Dankula case, all it takes is one member of the approved victim class to turn up in court and say they were […]

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