Je Suis Boris

I wonder if any of you remember the horrific attack on the French magazine, Charlie Hebdo, in January 2015? The satirical magazine had published cartoons depicting Muhammad. Many, but not all, Muslims object to any attempt to produce likenesses of the prophet. Two brothers, Islamist fanatics, entered the magazine’s premises and slaughtered 12 members of its staff. At about the same time, another terrorist attacked a Jewish supermarket, killing 4 customers.

There was an international outcry. Statesmen throughout the world, including our then Home Secretary (one Theresa May), declared their total commitment to freedom of expression and, particularly, emphasised that free men and women should never be prevented from ridiculing religions. The people joined in. The cry, Je Suis Charlie, was heard throughout the world. Continue reading


Navigate This

I had to laugh on the way home this evening when I heard about a study which shows men can navigate better than women. The most shocking about this is that someone needed an actual study to reach this conclusion.

Obviously it can’t be true that men can do anything better than women, because to suggest such a thing would be hate-speech, so the BBC needed a way to flip a story to its own purposes. Continue reading

Medicine is more effective than Faith

An American couple have been accused of denying their child medical treatment for religious reasons. The child is now dead. There is an online video of the child’s father’s mouth falling open when the judge reads out the charges. I’m not surprised he was surprised.

The Washington Post has a quote from the child’s alleged father:

‘“It didn’t seem smart to me that you would be saving people who weren’t the fittest. If evolution believes in survival of the fittest, well then why are we vaccinating everybody? Shouldn’t we just let the weak die off and let the strong survive?” Continue reading

Tory Grass Roots Hate Mrs May a Lot More than they Hated Ted Heath

Writing the title to this piece caused me genuine distress. I like Mrs May. I don’t know her well, but I have seen her on and off since the day, twenty eight years ago, when she, our local councillor, knocked on our door and asked whether we would like to join the Wimbledon Conservatives. She and Philip were very pleasant fellow guests at dinner parties. Eventually, they left Wimbledon because she had become a Parliamentary candidate elsewhere. I rejoiced at her success when she was elected. But I didn’t see much of her after that, though we had friends in common who reported to us on her progress. And then, of course, she became Home Secretary and everyone had heard of her. When she became Prime Minister I admit I was very nervous. I didn’t doubt her competence, but I wondered how someone who had never held a political opinion in her life could cope with the demands of her new office. I was also worried because I knew that, in the Home Office, she had gone native, she had convinced herself that that department’s civil servants, the most authoritarian in the land, could never be wrong about anything. That wasn’t her fault. She should never have been left in the same post for so long. But she was, and that has had a lasting effect. Continue reading

The Chequers Deal – Is Mrs May a Traitor?

I am, as most of you know, desperately opposed to our membership of the EU. I have stuck to that position through thick and thin for fifty years or more (a lot longer than almost any others of you). It doesn’t really matter what my reasons are, though I suppose it is worth pointing out that immigration, obviously, is not one of them (when we – people like genuine Left Wing Socialists and dyed in the wool Tories – tried to convince the electorate in 1975 that the Common Market was a bad thing no one ever dreamt that immigration would be a problem).

I was pleased when, contrary to my expectations, the electorate, in 2016, voted by a significant majority for us to come out of the EU. I assumed, without thinking about it, that the government would make arrangements for our departure and that would be that. Continue reading

Plod pay poorly

Rees and Others versus the Metropolitan Police ended yesterday with a crushing defeat for New Scotland Yard. However, even after being proven to have framed three innocent men, Cressida Dick’s lot are costing the taxpayer even more, by sending the case to the Supreme Court (as if they would overturn legal mavens LLJ McCombe, King and Coulson’s ruling). Why no arrests yet? Sooty rattled.

Rees & Ors. v MPC (Final) 05.07.2018

Don’t you Hate all that Heteronormative Stuff?

It is not always easy to imagine Islington dinner party conversations, but I think I can do this one.

‘I mean marriage is just so historically hetereonormative.’

‘Not just that, but patriarchal as well.’

‘So true. And were you really told by the registrar that you weren’t allowed to have a civil partnership instead’?

‘We were. I doubt anyone has ever suffered as much as we did when we were told that. I know the holocaust was awful, but it can’t have been anything like as bad as our visit to the Islington Town Hall.’ Continue reading