We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Her Britannic Majesty’s Government should do something….

British woman faces Dubai jail over Facebook ‘horse’ insult

Shocking news from Dubai, a British woman, formerly an expat in Dubai, has been arrested there and is facing up to 2 years in jail, after travelling to her ex-husband’s funeral. This is an ex-husband whose new wife she had allegedly rudely deprecated on Facebook (whilst in the UK).

Ms Shahravesh was married to her ex-husband for 18 years, during which time she lived in the United Arab Emirates for eight months, according to the campaign group Detained in Dubai.
While she returned to the UK with her daughter, her husband stayed in the United Arab Emirates, and the couple got divorced.
Ms Sharavesh discovered her ex-husband was remarrying when she saw photos of the new couple on Facebook.
She posted two comments in Farsi, including one that said: “I hope you go under the ground you idiot. Damn you. You left me for this horse”.

Sadly, her ‘wish’ came true. The target of her ire reported the comments and is refusing to drop the case, it seems.

The Foreign Office said it was supporting the mother-of-one.

Well that is reassuring, the same Foreign Office that is campaigning for freedom of speech in the media by appointing a relatively low profile barrister with a rather more well-known husband as its special envoy on media freedom.

Whilst at the same time, social media freedom in the UK is coming under attack from the UK’s government.

Websites to be fined over ‘online harms’ under new proposals

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has proposed an independent watchdog that will write a “code of practice” for tech companies.
Senior managers could be held liable for breaches, with a possible levy on the industry to fund the regulator.

Discussing financial penalties on BBC Breakfast, he (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Secretary Jeremy Wright) said: “If you look at the fines available to the Information Commissioner around the GDPR rules, that could be up to 4% of company’s turnover… we think we should be looking at something comparable here.”

Well, a proposal for yet another self-financing regulatory agency, (the business model of the Spanish Inquisition, I understand). What will they do with all the surplus funds? What of Dr. Bonham’s Case, all fines belong to the King?

Just out of interest, what exactly might HM Government be complaining about to Dubai when certain social media postings in the UK can get you fined or jailed for 2 years anyway?

50 comments to Her Britannic Majesty’s Government should do something….

  • Chip

    Escaping the authoritarian tentacles of the EU is just one battle in the war against statism. The U.K. and May/Corbyn in particular are appalling on liberty.

  • Paul Marks

    “On line harms” will NOT mean child abuse or terrorist activity – it will mean right of centre opinions. Anyone who doubts that should look at “Ofcom” or the “Electoral Commission” or other totalitarian scum. The new “watch dog” will be in the same Fascist (Corporate State establishment) tradition.

    Are your political or cultural opinions the sort of thing that, say, the Corporate leadership of Lloyds Bank (the bank that deliberatly bankrupted itself to please Gordon Brown – and plays pro “Gay Marriage” propaganda at any customer who enters their branch in Kettering) would approve of?

    No? Perhaps you dislike “Star Trek: Discovery” (STD – Sexually Transmitted Disease, brought to the world by the Disney Corporation and CBS Viacom), or think the European Union is a bad thing?

    Better not try posting your cultural or political opinions on line – as your internet provider will have to remove your opinions or face being closed down by the Corporatist State.

  • Paul Marks

    The sooner people understand that Freedom of Speech is a principle supported only in the United States – and only in those parts of the United States still under “Red Neck” influence (not the “nice” areas controlled by Big Business and their joined-at-the-hip associates the Cultural Marxists of the education system and the “mainstream” Corporate media) the better.

    Much (most?) of Big Business is not about serving customers – it is about getting cheap (low interest rate) Credit Money from the government backed Central Banking system. One can not expect such interests to support Freedom of Speech – or any other basic liberty.

  • Dr Evil

    But, but, but aren’t terrorist recruiting videos, beheading and the like videos and extreme pornography already illegal regardless of the platform? So wny is this censoring necessary? Am I smelling a very pungent rat regarding censorship of the internet in general? The Chines communist party politburo will be impressed.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “But, but, but aren’t terrorist recruiting videos, beheading and the like videos and extreme pornography already illegal regardless of the platform? So wny is this censoring necessary?”

    Harassment and Malicious Communication and Copyright Violation are also already illegal.

    The problem is, they’re also unenforceable. Nobody has the time or resources to police the internet. So what these new measures are trying to do is make it the responsibility of the platform provider to do the policing, making them responsible for the illegal actions of their users.

    They can’t chase a hundred million Facebook user nobodies through the courts. They can chase Facebook. So they make Facebook responsible, and then leave it to the private sector to implement (and pay for) the police state they want.

    But all the stuff they’re currently talking about is already illegal – it’s just that nobody cared when they were passing those laws because nobody thought the laws could possibly be applied to them.

  • Sam Duncan

    “Websites to be fined over ‘online harms’ under new proposals”

    Remember the good old days when you plonked trolls into your killfile and got on with your life? Happy times. I used to have nightmares about this internet thing becoming so popular among idiots that the law got involved, but I never thought I’d actually see it.

  • Mary Contrary

    @Paul Marks: you don’t need to speculate that “online harms” won’t be limited to child abuse or terrorist activity, if you read the White Paper it’s there in black and white.

    While covering a range of illegal content, online content is explicitly stated to cover a range of “harms” that are either not illegal or so vague they are incapable of being defined in law. These include “disinformation”, “manipulation” and being abusive to MPs and others in public life. Of course the catch-all “hate” is included; we probably don’t even have to wait for a Corbyn government for that to be levelled at Samizdata itself.

    As an example of the nannying, the White Paper also says there isn’t currently sufficient evidence to support new regulation of “screen time”, so instead it will be the duty of the regulator to commission some.
    But it is the Orwellian level of control of online speech that bothers me more, coupled with Draconian consequences for not doing the regulator’s bidding, so as to terrorise any company into taking the most restrictive view possible of disfavoured speech.

    With the White Paper proposing personal criminal liability and “civil fines” (i.e. criminal fines, but without the protection of a criminal trial) for senior employees of Internet companies, the government is making clear they will brook no dissent. Proposing ISP blocking, “disruption of business” such as taking steps to block online payment services and listing in search engines to foreign businesses that refuse to bend the knee to the UK regulator, and requiring foreign businesses to appoint a representative fall-guy in the UK, all add up to a level of enforcement that would make the Chinese blush. The now standard GDPR-based approach to fines (never mind what level is proportionate to the offence, the maximum will be a percentage of global turnover) of course goes without saying.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Heaven forfend an annoyed ex-wife should refer to her replacement as a “horse.” Especially on Social Media! Why, it’s almost as unconscionable as it would be to call her horse-faced!!!

    [It’s true that my personal preference is to refer to AOC as “Donkey-Chompers,” (not my invention, by the way, but a worthy one IMO) — but I only do that on genuine Internet websites, such as this one. And anyway I don’t do FB or any a them. Cooties.]

    After all, no one should be free to say something about somebody else that could be taken as derogatory. It sometimes causes emotional distress — harm — and it can give the derogatee a bad name, also harmful. (Been there.)

    Absolutely, the Social Media are not reviewing their users’ communications adequately before transmitting it. Let’s hear it for PPS — Properly Policed Speech!

    (Actually, the Post Office should really be looking into people’s mail, also. As it is, you can send anything through the mail. Even the plans for a bomb, or letters carrying unsubstantiated allegations of crime….)

  • Sam Duncan

    “While covering a range of illegal content, online content is explicitly stated to cover a range of “harms” that are either not illegal or so vague they are incapable of being defined in law. These include “disinformation”, “manipulation” and being abusive to MPs and others in public life. Of course the catch-all “hate” is included; we probably don’t even have to wait for a Corbyn government for that to be levelled at Samizdata itself.”

    A commenter on Guido Fawkes’s article about this “online harms” nonsense pointed out that the investment site ZeroHedge was recently “banned”* by the New Zealand government, along with 8chan and the peer-to-peer video platform Bitchute. The reputations of the latter two certainly precede them, but ZH, while certainly “right-of-centre”, is disturbingly close to the mainstream. (Its crime was to “publish” – I don’t know whether this means host or link to – the Christchurch shooter’s “manifesto”; the New Zealand government clearly doesn’t want its citizens to know that he’s a Lefty environmentalist with nationalist leanings. I can’t imagine why.) Of course, as Guido says, we now live in a world where spokesmen for major political parties can say the Spectator and Telegraph are “spreading hate”, and not be laughed off the stage.

    *Quotes because this is the internet and therefore yeah, right, whatever.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Sam — ZeroHedge “Right of centre”? How so?


    In the case of ZH, I’d give the NZ Gov a pass:

    Years ago, somebody calling itself “Dr. Éowyn” published a piece on, IIRC, the “Fellowship of the Minds” weblog that ranted about the terrorist Ayn Rand. In that posting she included a piece by “George Washington” (who I suppose was at that time “Tyler Durden”) that went into the awful horrible things that Miss R. had done. Certainly a terrorist — she blew up a housing project! She shot a poor defenseless torture-room guard in cold blood! She worshipped psycho child-murderer William Hickman! And like that.

    Neither of them is fit to mingle with decent folk.

    If that wasn’t “spreading hate,” along with being a complete fabrication, I don’t know what is. (Although it might count as an incitement to violence. I surely was moved to take after the two dastards with a squirrel gun, but unfortunately I didn’t have one to hand at the moment.)

    By the way — I would post links, except that I can’t find either posting on either site.

    . . .

    Ah, I feel so much better now. No, of course I don’t approve of any government’s censoring stuff. Except in the case of national security — sometimes.

    . . .

    ADDENDUM: A bit of Cyberstacks research unearths something outrageous and also utterly disgusting on Rand/Hickman at the History Commons site. If age and use have not inured you to the most vicious slander in the most “respectable” wannabe-Halls-of-Academe, you will be well-advised to pass up this screed.


  • bobby b

    Ah, yes, Dr. Eowyn. The notable Professor Maria Hsia Chang.

    Was this her article? And was this the source article?

    Chang is . . . different.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Dear lord! bobby, praise the Great Frog, I has done found me a wonderworking sleuth and I has gone to heaven!

    bobby, how did you do that! Honest, I checked over both sites carefully, used search engines, the whole shmear, and I came up empty.

    Somebody posted the Éowyn thing to the Individual-Sovereignty Yahoo group, which has suffered worse breakage every three years since 2009 with clockwork accuracy as Yahoo has gotten more and more bonkers. In particular, there was a time when I could have searched there and come up with the posting and the URL quickly and easily.

    Anyhow, thank you very much. I can sleep a little better now, knowing that there is another living human being who’s seen what I have seen. She said, her voice trembling with emotion. 😥

    I have to thank you also for reading my rant, let alone taking it seriously enough to hunt the pieces down. I figured people, if they noticed it at all, would just yawn and mumble “There she goes again.”


    Now, Maria Hsia Chang, you say. Never heard of her. A piece of work, indeed. I shall Investigate.


    Youse is a prince. I always said so. 😀

  • bobby b


    Coincidentally, I was in a conversation a few weeks ago where this stuff came up. Someone made that same point – Rand hated libertarians – and presented some of G Washington’s writings to back it up.

    After some quick research, I came to believe that Rand really did say all of those things, but that context matters, and her statements could be more accurately understood if one took out her uses of “Libertarian” and substituted in “Rothbardians”, which, while there is overlap, encompasses a different group than does “Libertarians.”

    I think these comments came during/right after her celebrated split with Murray and the Rothbards, while she was still in her angry phase. (Rand seemed to have a lot of angry phases, which was fortunate as that’s when she produced her best works.) What she’s attacking in these statements seem to be the very things that drove her and Rothbard apart. He essentially called her a lover of coercive big-government power, which probably wasn’t the best way to win her over.

    (About the Hickman thing – I’ve always sort of accepted the truth that she did express admiration for his statement of philosophy – something like “I live by my rules and no others.” She strikes me as being sometimes tone-deaf to how her statements can be used out of context – she was definitely not expressing admiration for the serial-killer part of him, but for his clear articulation of one of her first principles. But she left herself wide open to people who would like to attribute a love for a serial-killer to her.)

  • pete

    I don’t think Dubai can be that bad or Roger Waters would have said something.

  • Julie near Chicago (April 9, 2019 at 1:42 am), I remember a housing project being blown up in The Fountainhead, so maybe that book could come under the new law’s ban 🙂 (or 😡 or both).

  • Julie near Chicago


    Yes, the hero, architect Howard Roark, found out that his plans for the low-income housing project (“Cortland Homes”) had been in essence Bowdlerized, cheap materials used, doors left off the closets to save money, etc. etc., which was strictly against the handshake deal he’d made with Peter Keating, according to which his plans were to be followed to the letter. (Essentially he designed the project, and Peter would put his name to it, IIRC).

    But in the end, Peter wasn’t able to make the PTB stick to the “No Changes” rule. So Roark, to make a point, arranged to blow up the project, after making sure nobody would be in the place at the time. So he did, and in the end he was put on trial, and, acting as his own counsel, testified in his own behalf. This is the Roark speech (Gary Cooper, in the movie), as opposed to the Galt and d’Anconia speeches in Atlas. His argument was that the building(s) were the direct product of his own mind and his own work, and therefore were his property, which others could use only on terms that he set.

    Personally I always thought that was a mistake in plotting, in that of course the work of others was also involved in building the project, which would mean that in blowing it up he was also obliterating their work. I also thought a lot of people wouldn’t buy it. (I didn’t myself, but I thought that otherwise was it was a terrific story and very well written, a page-turner, and that it made its important points well; and after all nobody expects a fictional story to be plot-perfect and tone-perfect in every respect.)

    However, I have no idea of what would be a better way to handle the breaking of the agreement, especially if you want to show that the creator has the right to see that his creation is not used for nefarious purposes.
    The jury acquitted him.

  • Mr Ed

    Is this the Day of the Randroids? 🙂

  • Julie near Chicago

    Of course, Mr Ed. Be there or be square! :>))

  • bobby b

    Every day is the Day of the Randroids. A always equals A.


  • Schill McGuffin

    @Julie near Chicago —

    I don’t think “George Washington” is an alternate alias of the alias “Tyler Durden” on ZeroHedge. “George Washington” seems to be a bit more stridently Zinn-like in his commentary on the US, and tends to frame the US as the unequivocal black hat in any conflict with Russia or China, such I’ve suspected him of being a paid Russian or Chinese troll. “Durden” himself, who runs the site, is a bit more measured in his voice, and comments mostly on economic issues.

    Could be different hats for the same guy, but I don’t see compelling evidence of that.

  • Mr Ed

    bobby b

    A always equals A.

    Indeed, a hated proposition, hence the trans-gender activism we see today. To deny that A equals A, and to get others to bow down in recognition thereof, strikes me as the ultimate objective.

  • neonsnake

    I think you’ve just proven Rand to be incorrect, rather than the other way around.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Indeed, a hated proposition, hence the trans-gender activism we see today. To deny that A equals A, and to get others to bow down in recognition thereof, strikes me as the ultimate objective.”

    Everyone agrees ‘A is A’. But people have different opinions on what ‘A’ they’re talking about.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Niall, apologies for outlining The Fountainhead for you. I expect you’re as familiar with it as I am — I just missed the humour. My excuse is that at 3 in the morning (my time) I’m unlikely to be batting on all two cylinders. :>(

  • bobby b

    “I don’t think “George Washington” is an alternate alias of the alias “Tyler Durden” on ZeroHedge.”

    I think “George Washington” normally writes on “Washington’s Blog“, along with several others. That’s where the anti-Rand screed was originally posted.

  • Madrocketsci

    The C/C++ language might surprise you in terms pf identity. A==A returns false if A is nan. You have to use something like isnan(A).

  • Julie near Chicago

    bobby, as for Hickman, I agree. But you do know that the “she adored Hickman”-type articles are all based on some of her early thinking-things-out that she wrote in her private journals? At least, so I see from numerous postings on the Net. Here are a couple, if you care and if you haven’t seen them.



    (That one goes into some detail on her development of her play The Night of January 16th, and a negative criticism of Anne Heller’s biography of A.R.)

    There’s also an interesting section on A.R., Hickman, and Nietzsche in a paper by Chris Matthew Sciabarra at


    beginning on pdf page 5. Search for the sentence

    In 1928, Rand began work on The Little Street, easily the most Nietzschean of her early writings.

    Dr. Sciabarra tells us earlier in the paper that the Journals were edited for publication. Others have also mentioned this, and there’s a real question as to how much important stuff has been left out or so re-stated as to change the meaning.

    Personally, I haven’t read them.

    . . .

    Maria Chang. Well … I never thought I’d be giving FotM a look-over, but duty etc. First, she seems to be a real live Christian mystic, or close to one. Well … this caused me to see that my own Christian upbringing was decidedly non-mystical, which is why that whole way of being was very abstract to me, and distant. I digress.

    She seems to think the recent massacre at Christchurch wasn’t, that it was a False Flag op.

    Sandy Hook wasn’t, I guess.

    I also had a look at the Amazon reviews of her book on the Falun Gong. Some luvved, some hated. The latter claim she more or less took the ChiCom regime’s word for what the F.G. is about. Personally I’ve assumed that their stories of persecution in China are truthful.

    On the other hand, she seems to be big on America and generally on the Right side of things politically.

    “Different,” indeed. 🙂

    . . .

    Thanks for your explanation of your route to Eowyn and ZH. I’ll say it again: Youse is indeed a fine broth of a lad. 😀

  • Julie near Chicago

    Wow, bobby, more info! You do get around!

    . . .

    Adding to bobby: Per the Foot of all Knowledge (Wikipedia, heh-heh, yes I do know that this “ped” isn’t that “ped,” nor the other “ped” either — but it amuses me) links at source as usual:


    [Zerohedge’s] editorial [sic] has been labelled by The New Yorker as being associated with the alt-right,[10][11] as well as being anti-establishment, conspiratorial, and showing a pro-Russian-bias.[10][9] Zero Hedge in-house content is posted under the pseudonym “Tyler Durden”; however, the founder and main editor was identified as Daniel Ivandjiiski.[9]


    A May 2016 piece by Benjamin Wallace-Wells for The New Yorker magazine, also following up on the April 2016 Bloomberg unmasking article, described Zero Hedge as, “a blog that combines analysis of the financial markets, emphasizing the essential corruption of Wall Street”.[10] As discussed in § Non-financial views, the article also associated the site with the alt-right, and of being pointedly Russophile.[10]


    Plus good deal more. Sounds somewhat convoluted. And a bit as if either Wikip or ZH (or both) is having an identity crisis.

  • Julie near Chicago (April 9, 2019 at 10:49 pm), no problem. I was indeed being my usual understated self and do recall the book’s plot well. However your summary made our discussion accessible to others.

    (For me, the book began slowly but then managed to incarnate its vision with impressive strength, despite that vision being against the orthodoxy of its time and ours. For example, Rand manages to make the reader feel the horror of the conversion of the building into a home for retarded children – a standard goody-goody thing in the orthodox narrative.)

    And now I apologise for being OT.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Niall, yes–Fountainhead is my favorite of the novels.

    And thanks. 😀

  • Mr Ed

    I did try to read some Rand some years ago. I am not a fan of literature, I prefer factual information. I have a recollection (which I hope is not mistaken) of putting down a Rand book for the last time when I read a rant against clocks on buildings and the disgusting altruism of providing the time free to any and all who could see it (or hear it). Was I, am I, imagining that?

    It struck me that the Bolsheviks had won, they had taught Ayn Rand to hate, just not hate the ‘politically correct’ targets.

  • mila s

    A=A assumes identity is self identical, which it is not.
    Identity is a derivative of difference, not the other way around, so A=what is not A.

    To call a piece of meat ‘raw’ if cooking had never been invented would be meaningless. It only becomes ‘raw’ because of something it is not (cooked)
    , its identity derives not from what it is but what it is not.

  • bobby b

    “A=what is not A.”

    But doesn’t the Diamond Sutra carry on, through the “logic of not”, to “A is not A, therefore it is A”?

  • Mr Ed

    This thread appears to be heading towards questionable propositions such as that from the man who asked:

    ‘If I say something, and my wife doesn’t hear me, am I still wrong?’

  • Nullius in Verba

    mila s, An interesting point of view!

    We divide the world into categories. Items in the same category are ‘the same’, items in different categories are not. But if we redraw the lines, then items that were once the same might now be different, and vice versa. ‘Identity’ is about where we choose to draw the lines.

    This meat is the same as that meat (from a food preparation hygiene point of view) because both are ‘raw’. But for somebody else, this meat is lamb and that meat is beef. ‘A is A’ says that ‘Meat is meat’, which to some people is saying ‘lamb is beef’. Everyone agrees ‘A is A’. But people have different opinions on what ‘A’ they’re talking about.

  • neonsnake

    Mr Ed – I don’t think it’s questionable at all. The man is clearly in a superposition of right and wrong until the good lady gets home and makes her observation.

    NIV – are you familiar with Phaedrus’s knife?

  • Mr Ed

    Regarding mila s’ example, rather than the point, ‘raw’ essentially means ‘as it is’, and an adjective is, IMHO, descriptive not determinative. Without perception of the material universe, would there be any scope for adjectives? There could still be nouns.

    Someone might describe a particular dish as ‘cooked’, others the same dish as ‘raw’ (in a pejorative sense), yet be talking about the same thing, due to subjective approaches to what is the range of appropriate cooking.

    Does mathematics have (any need for) adjectives?

  • neonsnake

    Does mathematics have (any need for) adjectives?

    Would the difference between natural numbers and real numbers count, I wonder?

    If for instance, I say that the difference between the number 0 and the number 1 is greater than the difference between the number 1 and infinity, you could justifiably tell me I’m an idiot, until I apply the adjectives “real” and “natural” to the two sets.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Does mathematics have (any need for) adjectives?”

    Mathematics explores the subtleties of ‘identity’ with concepts like ‘equivalence relation’, ‘isomorphism’, ‘homomorphism’, and so on.

    “Would the difference between natural numbers and real numbers count, I wonder?”

    Yes. There is a number ‘one’ among the natural numbers, and a number ‘one’ among the real numbers. Are they the same thing? You can think of the natural numbers being ’embedded’ inside the real numbers, and they’re the same. Or you can think of them as distinct types that just happen to follow the same rules of arithmetic, and distinct. There’s an isomorphism between the natural numbers and a subset of the reals, but they’re actually distinct objects. But then, you can consider numbers themselves to be an abstraction of everything that follows a particular set of rules, which means they’re all the same.

    Everyone knows that three apples are not the same as three oranges. But are zero apples the same thing as zero oranges? Are three apples the same as three fruit? Is the type of ‘three’ that counts apples the same ‘three’ that counts sheep?

    Mathematicians usually answer ‘it depends’. Pick a set of definitions, and then we can talk.

    “NIV – are you familiar with Phaedrus’s knife?”

    I am now!

    The word ‘just’ does often have a logical function, as well as a pejorative one. It is asking whether there is one one possible answer, only one possible way to see the world. ‘Is that all there is to it?’ I find the world is always more complicated than any of our mental models of it. ‘All models are wrong, but some are useful.’ The art is in knowing the limitations of your own model of the world.

  • mila s

    We divide the world into categories. Items in the same category are ‘the same’, items in different categories are not. But if we redraw the lines, then items that were once the same might now be different, and vice versa. ‘Identity’ is about where we choose to draw the lines.

    This reminds me of Luis borges “Chinese Encylopaedia” in which it is written that animals are divided into:

    those that belong to the Emperor,
    embalmed ones,
    those that are trained,
    suckling pigs,
    fabulous ones,
    stray dogs,
    those included in the present classification,
    those that tremble as if they were mad,
    innumerable ones,
    those drawn with a very fine camelhair brush,
    those that have just broken a flower vase,
    those that from a long way off look like flies.

  • mila s (April 10, 2019 at 3:55 pm), long ago, Natalie and I pointed out that this categorisation makes perfect sense – in the context of a course on painting taught in ancient China (or in the pages of Kai Lung 🙂 – see e.g. The Ill-regulated Destiny of Kin Yen, the Picture-maker).

    Meanwhile, I can only hope Her Britannic Majesty’s Government does whatever it can for the unfortunate woman in Dubai without being quite as easily distracted as we seem to be on this much off-topic thread.

  • neonsnake

    I suspect that we’re looking for distraction right now, as we wait to find out whether we have another a year of Brexit delay to contend with.

    It’s not “right”, but I’m as guilty of it as anyone, certainly. Meanwhile, I guess we’re chatting amongst ourselves?

  • bobby b

    “Meanwhile, I can only hope Her Britannic Majesty’s Government does whatever it can for the unfortunate woman in Dubai without being quite as easily distracted as we seem to be on this much off-topic thread.”

    I think you have a better chance that your government will suddenly begin prosecuting people who call other people “horse”, to show solidarity with Sharia.

    (Does “horse” have some weirdly negative connotation in Dubai? I’m guessing that the more likely explanation for how this was defamation under Sharia has to do with accusing a woman of luring a man away from his legal wife.)

    There. Back on topic.

  • Julie near Chicago

    bobby, I too wondered about whether “horse” is an “opprobrius epithet”* in Dubai. What if she’d called her replacement a pig?

    *Did I get that from Plum? I can’t quite remember, but it sure sounds like Constable Oates or someone like that.

  • staghounds

    “…and though the Windsors took no great pride or pleasure in this particular unit of their wide and varied possessions, and would gladly have exchanged him for some interesting bird or mammal for the Balmoral Park, the code of international dignity demanded that they should display a decent solicitude for his restoration.”


  • Julie near Chicago


    Saki — H.H. Munroe! Blast from the past. We read him in 8th grade, or maybe in high school.

    Haven’t thought of him in maybe half a century or more. Thanks!

  • Mr Ed

    It appears that the poor lady’s case has been settled after she paid a ‘fine’ of around £625, and so she can leave Dubai.

    Good horse sense in the circumstances.

  • Paul Marks.

    Prime Minister Theresa May has just dismissed the philosopher Roger Scruton from his post as an adviser on buildings – because she did not approve of him saying that “Islamophobia is a propaganda word” (which IT IS – “Islamophobia” is a “propaganda word”).

    I think we now see what the attitude of Mrs May, and the rest of the establishment, is to Freedom of Speech. Mrs May and co are not about fighting “child abuse” or “terrorism” – what they want to exterminate is Conservative political and cultural dissent. We have a “Conservative” government led by an ardent Progressive and Social Reformer – “Social Reform” being liberticide.

    It really is that brutally simple. And I doubt there is a single post on this blog that Mrs May (and establishmentarians like her) would not want to BAN.

    We have a radical establishment – the very people who should be Conservative (if one were to believe the legends) are, in fact, fanatically anti Conservative (filled with hatred for the traditions of Western Civilisation), due to their “education”.

  • Johnathan Pearce (London)

    It is worth noting that China has been blazing a heroically Statist trail in censorship, and that I am sure the likes of Mrs May in the UK and her opposite numbers in the EU treat China’s innovations as models to applaud, not to regard with contempt. Check out this item from the South China Morning Post.

  • Paul Marks

    JP – you are correct, horribly correct, as many people who know about computer matters (I am ignorant of such things) and social matters generally have pointed out – Western “liberals” such as the E.U. establishment (Mrs May) really do follow the lead of the People’s Republic of China. They do not see it as a warning – they see it as a role model. The “liberals” intend to copy the PRC – “Social Credit system” and all.

    As Mrs May would say “we owe it to our children [she has none – but claims collective ownership of children] to built a better world by promoting good behaviour and discouraging bad behaviour” – of course the state (and allied groups) will decide what “good” and “bad” behaviour is.

    Meanwhile “IPSO” the “press regulator” has ruled that a newspaper article by Boris Johnson is “inaccurate” and that the Daily Telegraph must print a “correction”.

    As it happens I am not sure that Mr Johnson’s article was that “inaccurate” – as “No Deal” is more popular than Mrs May’s Sell Out, Surrender “deal” – but that is by-the-by, FREE COUNTRIES DO NOT HAVE “PRESS REGULATORS”.

    That is a basic principle – but the principles of liberty are totally alien to Mrs May and the rest of the modern establishment.

    If they “have to” use the law and the “Quangos” (the unelected bodies such as “IPSO”, the “Electoral Commission”, “Ofcom” to get such vile things as Mrs May’s Sell-Out Surrender “deal” passed (by censoring opposition) that is exactly what they will do – indeed they are already doing it.