The UK thread

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Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

From the Good Law Project (quoted in full):
Is Government ramping up costs to silence us?

Correspondence with Government has revealed they expect to spend a staggering £1 million defending our judicial review of their decisions to award contracts criticised by the NAO. This is a sum unprecedented in our lawyers’ experience of judicial review proceedings. We can’t but wonder whether they are trying to scare us off – using the bottomless public purse to avoid accountability to the public.

Government also says, remarkably, that finding out whether they acted lawfully in channelling hundreds of millions or billions to their VIP associates, is not in the public interest.

We had until recently been working on the understanding that we had raised enough money for our challenges to Government’s awards of hundreds of millions of pounds of PPE contracts to Pestfix, Ayanda, and Clandeboye.

We were shocked to learn that – having failed to provide the evidence we’ve been asking for since July – Government is threatening a vast disclosure exercise going well beyond what would normally be undertaken in a judicial review. And not just that they have hired an expensive international commercial law firm. They expect to have a team of 30-40 working for up to 3 months on an exercise that has not been requested by us, or by the Court.

In the experience of our legal team, costs incurred by Government in judicial review proceedings rarely exceed £100,000. Here Government says it has already spent over £325,000, and estimates their total costs will amount to £1 million – a staggering sum for a judicial review.

Government knows full well that we cannot take existential risk on bringing a single case. So we wrote to Government asking it to agree and order ‘capping’ both our costs and the taxpayers’ costs in these public interest proceedings.

We were shocked this week to receive their response contending that the litigation is not in the public interest, and refusing our proposed reciprocal cap: “In particular our client does not agree that the proceedings are ‘public interest proceedings'”. These are cases involving on Government’s own admission hundreds of millions of pounds being spent on unusable facemasks on companies that went through the VIP lane.

Not in the public interest? What are they on!

The point is all the more remarkable given that a barrister employed by the Government Legal Department in her witness statement of 30 November stated that: “We acknowledge that there is considerable public interest in Covid related procurement, particularly of PPE.”

We have now applied to the court for a Cost Cap. In line with our transparency principles I am publishing my Witness Statement. But if we don’t get one, unless a white knight or white knights emerge, the simple fact is we will have to abandon the litigation. We are not in a position to bear a £1 million risk.
https://goodlawproject.org/update/rampi ... ilence-us/
Doctor X
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Doctor X »

Hotarubi wrote: Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:38 pmNot really, because if we remained, and Scotland became independent, we could have voted to keep them out of the EU which would have royally pissed them off.
Though the SNP "promised" that, with independence, they would immediately be accepted into the EU. To my recollection, Cameron et al did not come out and specifically threaten to veto their entrance, but he did get the current head of the EU to publicly affirm that acceptance was not automatic.

The implications were staggering since not only would they not be a part of the EU, they would no longer be part of the UK of course.

I do wonder how much of the SNP's support is "spite vote." It is easy to pretend to be for independence when there is no danger of having to vote for it and watch the buffoons actually try to run the country.

– J.D.
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Doctor X wrote: Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:25 am
Hotarubi wrote: Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:38 pmNot really, because if we remained, and Scotland became independent, we could have voted to keep them out of the EU which would have royally pissed them off.
Though the SNP "promised" that, with independence, they would immediately be accepted into the EU. To my recollection, Cameron et al did not come out and specifically threaten to veto their entrance, but he did get the current head of the EU to publicly affirm that acceptance was not automatic.

The implications were staggering since not only would they not be a part of the EU, they would no longer be part of the UK of course.

I do wonder how much of the SNP's support is "spite vote." It is easy to pretend to be for independence when there is no danger of having to vote for it and watch the buffoons actually try to run the country.

– J.D.
I wonder if some of the spikes on my graph appear the day after "Braveheart" is on the telly.

Methinks the turn around on the for/against line is due to COVID. Probably with good reason. BlowJo has not dealt with it at all well and remains a buffoon, Freddie "look at how anti-semitic I'm not" Starmer is self isolating for the third time and remains clueless and Haddock keeps banging the tired, anachronistic "Auld Enemy" nonsense whilst remaining a hypocrite. There's no-one capable of managing a Starbucks let alone a country.

One still laments the Brexit vote that led to Cameron's demise, wasn't great but was a better PM than all the above put together - Inc. Brown trousers.

This is what you wanted, Wayne from Essex.Most of us remainers saw it.
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Witness wrote: Fri Jan 29, 2021 3:08 am From the Good Law Project (quoted in full):

Is Government ramping up costs to silence us?

Correspondence with Government has revealed they expect to spend a staggering £1 million defending our judicial review of their decisions to award contracts criticised by the NAO. This is a sum unprecedented in our lawyers’ experience of judicial review proceedings. We can’t but wonder whether they are trying to scare us off – using the bottomless public purse to avoid accountability to the public.

Government also says, remarkably, that finding out whether they acted lawfully in channelling hundreds of millions or billions to their VIP associates, is not in the public interest.
A report by the National Audit Office (NAO) has offered examples of some of the failures made by the Cabinet Office when it came to procuring personal protective equipment (PPE) in the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The investigative report, which was published by the NAO today, has outlined examples of the government handing multi-million pound contracts to small businesses, as well as making orders for the wrong sort of PPE.

The report investigated the government’s emergency coronavirus procurement during the Covid-19 pandemic up until 31 July 2020 following concerns raised about transparency when awarding lucrative government contracts.

By 31 July 2020 over 8,600 contracts related to government’s response to the pandemic had been awarded, with a value of £18bn. Contracts ranged in value from less than £100 to £410 million.

Pestfix
The Department for Health and Social Care awarded Pestfix, a Littlehampton-based retailer of pest control products including PPE, a £350m contract. The contract led the government to order hundreds of thousands of the wrong type of face mask.

Pestfix, a family business, was processed through the government’s high priority lane, which meant the cross-government PPE team considered that leads from these sources were more credible or needed to be treated with more urgency. However, according to the NAO, it was a mistake from within the cross-government PPE team to place Pestfix in the high priority lane.

The government contracted with PestFix to purchase 25 million FFP2 masks for £59m, however the masks were not in line with the government’s published PPE specifications at the time of the order. The government realised its mistake after 600,000 of the FFP2 masks had been delivered, and communicated the error with Pestfix. The masks will not be used and instead might be resold or used elsewhere.

In place of the remainder of the order, the government requested that PestFix instead supply Type IIR masks – a mask that fitted with the government’s PPE specifications – and varied the contract accordingly. PestFix has delivered 69% of this order to date and is continuing to work with the department.

A statement on Pestfix’s website said: “We welcome the findings of the National Audit Office that any fast-tracking of PestFix was not the result of any false information provided by PestFix. We were awarded contracts solely based on our ability to move quickly and change continually, and by being first to table genuine and competitive commercial offers for medical PPE while supply was rapidly diminishing but the country most needed it.”

Ayanda Capital
The Department of Health & Social Care also pushed Ayanda Capital’s £253m contract through the government’s PPE high-priority lane, following a referral by an NHS official.

The government again ordered the wrong masks from Ayanda Capital, and did not carry out due diligence checks until after it had signed a contract with the firm.


The government ordered £155m worth of FFP2 masks, which again were not in line with the government’s published PPC specifications. The masks were received and may be either repurposed or resold, a process Ayanda is assisting with.

Ayanda has disputed that the FFP2 masks did not meet the required technical standards. CEO Tim Horlick this week wrote a letter to the government that said: “Suggestions that the masks are not fit for purpose or are somehow unsafe to use by frontline NHS workers are simply untrue and we are advised defamatory.”

Ayanda’s website makes no mention of an ability to procure PPE. The business describes itself as: “a London-based family office focused on a broad investment strategy. We specialise in currency trading, offshore property, private equity and trade financing.”

Andrew Mills, who was an adviser to the Board of Trade at the time the contract was established, was a senior adviser at Ayanda Capital. Mills acted as Ayanda’s representative and signed the contract with the Department of Health and Social Care on Ayanda’s behalf on 29 April 2020.

The only documented consideration of the potential Mills conflict of interest by the Department of Health & Social Care was a standard new supplier form that declared no conflicts of interest, and due diligence checking for political connections for Ayanda directors. However, the due diligence checks, carried out on 2 May 2020 and after the contract had been signed, did not include Ayanda’s senior adviser and did not identify any conflicts of interest.

City A.M. could not reach Ayanda Capital for comment.
There were no conflicts of interest because they said so.
Public First
In March 2020 the Cabinet Office procured focus group and communication services firm Public First to provide focus group research on an informal basis, agreeing to pay Public First for each set of groups without a formal contract. The focus groups were usually booked a week or two in advance.

The owners of the consultancy firm have previously worked with Michael Gove – the minister for the Cabinet Office. While the NAO found no evidence Gove had been involved in either the award or management of this contract, the spending watchdog also found no documentation on the consideration of conflicts of interest, no recorded process for choosing the supplier, and no specific justification for using emergency procurement.


On 5 June 2020, the Cabinet Office awarded a retrospective contract to cover work already carried out from 3 March 2020 onwards and expected of future work. The Cabinet Office paid £550,000 to Public First in total for the work covered by this contract.

Public First has been contacted for comment.

Cabinet Office minister Julia Lopez said: “We have been dealing with an unprecedented global pandemic that has posed the biggest challenge to the UK in a generation.

“As this report rightly recognises, we needed to procure contracts with extreme urgency to secure the vital supplies required to protect frontline NHS workers and the public and we make no apology for that.

“We have robust processes in place for spending public money to ensure we get critical equipment to where it needs to go as quickly as possible, whilst also ensuring value for money for the taxpayer.

“It is important to maintain the public’s confidence in how we manage their money, and we welcome the NAO’s scrutiny of our processes and recommendations on how they can be improved.”
Synopsis: People in a hurry didn't practice due diligence. Although the Ayanda contract appears to stink.

https://www.cityam.com/wrong-masks-retr ... laid-bare/
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

UK government accused of covering up 'national scandal' over Grenfell-style cladding

Exclusive: Housing ministry told local authorities it was 'appropriate' to block Freedom of Information requests that could identify buildings with similar ‘Grenfell’ cladding

The British government has been accused of trying to cover up a “national scandal” by telling local councils it was "appropriate" to block the release information about high-rise buildings that have potentially lethal aluminium cladding.

Aluminium composite cladding (ACM), which was implicated in the catastrophic Grenfell Tower fire that killed 72 people in June 2017, was banned the following year.

But the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has told local authorities they can block Freedom of Information (FOI) requests that may identify high-rise buildings with aluminium cladding.

In a letter sent to all local authority chief executives, and obtained by openDemocracy, the housing ministry told councils that when responding to FOI requests about ACM “it is appropriate to withhold information that could lead to the identification of affected buildings”.

The news comes as Labour leader Keir Starmer announced that he will force a vote in Parliament next week to commit the government to publishing figures on the number of buildings affected by dangerous cladding.

The housing ministry’s letter, written by the director-general of building safety in November 2017, states that “clearly it is not for” the department to determine how councils respond to FOI requests. But Jon Baines, an information rights expert at the law firm Mishcon de Reya, said he “cannot see any other way of interpreting” the letter than as official guidance.
https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/dark-m ... -cladding/
Grammatron
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Grammatron »

Regular people can't be trusted with facts.
Doctor X
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Doctor X »

Hotarubi wrote: Fri Jan 29, 2021 10:01 amI wonder if some of the spikes on my graph appear the day after "Braveheart" is on the telly.
Or Trainspotting . . . or Outlander . . .
One still laments the Brexit vote that led to Cameron's demise, wasn't great but was a better PM than all the above put together - Inc. Brown trousers.
I thought Brown saved the world. . . .

I did not understand why Cameron resigned. Perhaps he simply could not, in good conscience, deliver a Brexit. However, I do not need to tell you his mistake was to let the vote be a simple majority. It is a shame, but it is his own fault he could not work out an exit that approached what he tried to offer in the first place.

Perhaps he anticipated an existence similar to the Gray Lady. Though I suspect she was what you get when you try to avoid getting a Boris or someone firmly in another camp and pick a bowl of Jello™ to lead your party and country. He could have done better.

But he did not, so now he has to live with the ignominy.

Back to St. Mel of Gibson and killing Jews English Scum: Haddock thinks if she wins the majority in the . . . heh . . . heh . . . bwa!ha!ha! Scottish Parliament – which she already leads – this is The Signal that Mel will Fuck that Hot Bond Girl over the Prisoner's Dead Scotland will be free!

Boris the Spider will just say "no." Not on his watch. His majority is safe for four more years, so no reason to cave. The Toad leading the SNP can only burp about "democracy!" and "will of the peoples," and Boris just has to remind him that they agreed to the conditions of the vote, they lost, and go fuck your mothers. So while Sir Stampin' is at least coherent when he engages Boris – a major advance compared with the Mad Uncle – The Toad is just a one-line comedian. When Boris becomes bored with reminding him that his party agreed to conditions and lost so fuck you, he just has to describe how well the Scottish government is handling things.

And the SNP may yet implode over its former leader winning in court . . .

. . . and giving evidences – Ta – that Haddock lied to her parliament.

– J.D.
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

‘Illegal rave’ in Southend just pensioners queuing for jab

POLICE who swooped in on an “illegal rave” in Southend instead found queues of pensioners lining up to get their Covid jab.

Three police cars descended on the Essex Freemasons’ Saxon Hall in Aviation Way, Southend on Friday, after being tipped off about a ‘rave’.

But instead of finding strobe lights, glow sticks and groups of teenagers - officers were confronted with large numbers of people in their 80s with walking sticks queuing outside the building for their vaccine.

Essex Police have confirmed they attended reports of "congestion at the vaccination centre" and that officers visited the site to help with traffic management.

But Dennis Baum, chairman of Saxon Hall revealed when officers attended they told him they expected to find a "rave" taking place.

He said: “It was really funny when the police arrived as they had been notified that there was a “rave” taking place at Saxon Hall - only to find 80 and 90 year-olds on wheelchairs, zimmer frames and walking sticks, patiently queueing for their vaccinations.

“Grumpy old men and grumpy old women were in abundance. Nevertheless, as a balancing act many more very appreciative people couldn’t have been more grateful to receive the vaccine and to Saxon Hall and the Freemasons for facilitating it.”
https://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/190231 ... euing-jab/

A Masonic plot. :shock:
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

The law commission proposed legal changes in the uk:

“Hate-speech laws do not yet cover what you say in the privacy of your own home – you can’t be prosecuted for stirring up hatred at your dining table or in the bedroom.

The commission, however, finds this idea of privacy intolerable. So, if it gets its way, any words you use in your own home that are ‘likely’, even by accident, to ‘stir up hatred’ against a vast array of ‘protected’ groups – including ‘punks’, if you can believe it – could get you sent to prison for seven years. These proposals will make parents fear their own children – and children fear their siblings.

Chillingly, the commission’s plan to invade the private sphere, by scrapping the ‘dwelling’ exemption, has appeared at the same time as the government’s Covert Human Intelligence Sources (CHIS) Bill, which will formalise state powers to employ children as spies against parents suspected of crimes. It is not just the police or intelligence sources that will get this power, but quangos too.“
ed
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Re: The UK thread

Post by ed »

1984 was written by a brit after all.
sparks
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Re: The UK thread

Post by sparks »

Where are your crawdads Ed?
ed
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Re: The UK thread

Post by ed »

Thats hate speech!!! :x :x :x

Makes me feel bad.

Meanie.
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Giz wrote: Mon Feb 01, 2021 4:17 pm The law commission proposed legal changes in the uk:

“Hate-speech laws do not yet cover what you say in the privacy of your own home – you can’t be prosecuted for stirring up hatred at your dining table or in the bedroom.

The commission, however, finds this idea of privacy intolerable. So, if it gets its way, any words you use in your own home that are ‘likely’, even by accident, to ‘stir up hatred’ against a vast array of ‘protected’ groups – including ‘punks’, if you can believe it – could get you sent to prison for seven years. These proposals will make parents fear their own children – and children fear their siblings.

Chillingly, the commission’s plan to invade the private sphere, by scrapping the ‘dwelling’ exemption, has appeared at the same time as the government’s Covert Human Intelligence Sources (CHIS) Bill, which will formalise state powers to employ children as spies against parents suspected of crimes. It is not just the police or intelligence sources that will get this power, but quangos too.“
Will Alexa and Siri rat out?
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Doctor X wrote: Sun Jan 24, 2021 5:10 pm Only because you culturally appropriated Ireland.

Meanwhile, while it became RACISTS to say "China/Chinese/Wuhan Flu" only after The Donald said it, it is NOT RACISTS to say the "UK Flu," because people care less about the UKers than they do about the Wogs the Chinese have enslaved and are systematically wiping out from the gene pool.

Notice that I did not write "genocide," because, Heavens to Betsy, it is never, ever a "genocide" if it does not involve Proper Europeans.

– J.D.
Aha! Now, y'see, everyone has or is soon-to-have the delights of the South African variant and no-one has come up with Zu-Flu yet.

Except me. I'd make a better President than Josef.
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

“How does Labour plan to win back the Red Wall? A leaked internal Labour strategy document gives one answer: it says the party must make 'use of the flag'. This sounds like a sensible way to woo those voters put off by Jeremy Corbyn. But the deranged backlash from some Labour activists suggests that not everyone agrees. It also shows why the party is doomed to fail in its bit to change its image for the better.

Labour activists took to social media yesterday to decry Keir Starmer on the strategy, asking why the Labour leader is risking alienating so many of his party’s core support. That just mentioning the Union flag in a positive light could actually alienate these supporters tells you everything you need to know about why the Labour party can’t win general elections any longer.”

https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/why ... atriotism-
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

"If you’re a Labour activist, ask yourself why you’re happy with seeing the Palestinian flag waved at Labour conference."

That. No other comment is necessary.
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Queen's property manager banks huge windfarm bonanza

Offshore seabed auction lands £4bn over 10 years for Treasury and Crown Estate prompting calls for green sovereign wealth fund

The Queen and the Treasury are in line for a multibillion-pound bonanza from renewable energy, after a major auction of seabed plots for windfarms off the coasts of England and Wales attracted runaway bids.

The crown estate, which manages the monarch’s property portfolio, holds exclusive rights to lease the seabed around the British Isles. With its first auction of windfarm licences in a decade understood to have reached record highs, the Queen’s income is expected to leap by at least £100m a year, while the takings will generate over £300m a year for the Treasury.

Two windfarm sites within the Irish Sea have reportedly attracted the most frenzied bidding, with energy firms offering to pay as much as £200m for each – a total revenue of £400m a year. Awards for another three areas have yet to be decided. The licences are for 10 years, meaning the auction will raise at least £4bn over a decade.
https://www.theguardian.com/business/20 ... m-windfall


And in other news:
Revealed: Queen lobbied for change in law to hide her private wealth

Monarch dispatched private solicitor to secure exemption from transparency law

The Queen successfully lobbied the government to change a draft law in order to conceal her “embarrassing” private wealth from the public, according to documents discovered by the Guardian.

A series of government memos unearthed in the National Archives reveal that Elizabeth Windsor’s private lawyer put pressure on ministers to alter proposed legislation to prevent her shareholdings from being disclosed to the public.

Following the Queen’s intervention, the government inserted a clause into the law granting itself the power to exempt companies used by “heads of state” from new transparency measures.

The arrangement, which was concocted in the 1970s, was used in effect to create a state-backed shell corporation which is understood to have placed a veil of secrecy over the Queen’s private shareholdings and investments until at least 2011.

The true scale of her wealth has never been disclosed, though it has been estimated to run into the hundreds of millions of pounds.

Evidence of the monarch’s lobbying of ministers was uncovered by a Guardian investigation into the royal family’s use of an arcane parliamentary procedure, known as Queen’s consent, to secretly influence the formation of British laws.

Unlike the better-known procedure of royal assent, a formality that marks the moment when a bill becomes law, Queen’s consent must be sought before legislation can be approved by parliament.

It requires ministers to alert the Queen when legislation might affect either the royal prerogative or the private interests of the crown.
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/202 ... ate-wealth


https://i.imgur.com/6HT5xH6.jpg
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

The criminalization of jerkishness continues:

“ the arrest of a man in Scotland over a vile tweet about the death of Captain Tom Moore, the Second World War veteran who became a national treasure in 2020 for his NHS fundraising.

Police Scotland has confirmed that a 35-year-old man has been charged ‘in connection with communication offences’. What it is he actually said wasn’t made clear. But a subsequent report, and much online chatter, points to this delightful post: ‘The only good Brit soldier is a deed one, burn auld fella, buuuuurn.’ “
ed
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Re: The UK thread

Post by ed »

Hence the bill of rights
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Irish president attacks 'feigned amnesia' over British imperialism

Michael D Higgins accuses academics and journalists of turning blind eye to impact of colonialism

Ireland’s president, Michael D Higgins, has made a sharp critique of British imperialism and the “feigned amnesia” of academics and journalists who refuse to address its legacy.

Writing in the Guardian, Higgins accuses unnamed academic and media organisations of turning a blind eye to the devastating impact of colonialism not just in Ireland but across the world.

“A feigned amnesia around the uncomfortable aspects of our shared history will not help us to forge a better future together,” he says, contrasting British forgetfulness with Ireland’s reflections on its war of independence and partition a century ago.

Ignoring the “shadows cast by our shared past” are part of a wider reluctance to engage with imperial legacy, says Higgins, who occupies a largely ceremonial post. His article comes in advance of a seminar on imperialism he is to host on 25 February.

“I am struck by a disinclination,” he says, “in both academic and journalistic accounts to critique empire and imperialism. Openness to, and engagement in, a critique of nationalism has seemed greater. And while it has been vital to our purposes in Ireland to examine nationalism, doing the same for imperialism is equally important and has a significance far beyond British/Irish relations.”

The article represents a pointed intervention for a head of state who has promoted reconciliation between Britain and Ireland, visited the Queen and acknowledged that Irish Republicans committed atrocities during and after the war of independence.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/ ... mperialism
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

If you want to understand what’s going wrong at the BBC right now, you could do worse than look at the bizarre Zara Mohammed controversy. The Beeb has removed from social media a clip of Ms Mohammed, the new head of the Muslim Council of Britain, being interviewed on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour. Cancel-culture mobs had complained that the interview was a form of ‘bullying’ and that it had undertones of ‘Islamophobia’. And now the BBC has caved to these crazy, unfounded criticisms and shoved the interview clip in the memory hole. This reveals a lot about the great moral anchoring of the BBC in the 21st century.

Ms Mohammed is the first female head of the MCB. She and many of her supporters seem to have believed that this fact would generate gushing media coverage only, about Muslim community groups becoming more female-friendly, etc etc. But Emma Barnett of Woman’s Hour – being a journalist who, you know, likes to ask probing questions – had a different idea. Barnett put Mohammed on the spot in an interview aired on 4 February. She pressed her particularly on the issue of female imams. How many are there in the UK, she asked? She asked four times. Mohammed couldn’t answer. It was embarrassing.

To most listeners this will have come across as a standard newsy interview. A public figure being put on the spot, being pushed for answers, being badgered (gently) for information. Nothing to see here. Interviews like this happen every day. But the identitarian brigade saw things differently. To them, the interview was an act of racism.

This is baloney of the highest order. Barnett said nothing whatsoever that was racist or Islamophobic. She merely interrogated – quite lightly, as it happens – a newly appointed public figure, the head of a body whose work and beliefs are matters of public interest.

And now, alarmingly, the BBC has surrendered to the criticisms of the Woman’s Hour interview and removed the clip from social media. This is a serious moral failure on the part of the public broadcaster. And it isn’t the first time the BBC has caved to flimsy criticisms from vocal Islamic activists. Last September it edited a headline on its website that said the Manchester Arena bomber had been ‘seen praying’ before blowing himself up. That this was true – eye-witnesses told the inquiry into that atrocity that they saw the bomber praying – mattered not one jot. The MCB and others complained about the headline, claiming it was ‘unacceptable’, and the BBC duly rewrote it. Is the BBC now more interested in appeasing identitarian campaign groups than in reporting the truth?


The removal of the Woman’s Hour clip runs counter to the BBC’s own editorial guidelines. These state that, ‘Unless content is specifically made available only for a limited time period, there is a presumption that material published online will become part of a permanently accessible archive and should be preserved in as complete a state as possible’. In removing the clip in response to noisy, baseless complaints, the BBC has broken its own guidelines, shown that it is willing to sacrifice its news content at the altar of identitarian sensitivities

https://www.spiked-online.com/2021/02/1 ... ing-islam/

Glad I’m not paying the license fee anymore
ceptimus
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Re: The UK thread

Post by ceptimus »

It's more-or-less acceptable now for the BBC to question Roman Catholic or Anglican leaders - though they still tend to fawn and pussyfoot compared to how they would question politicians. And, of course, it's only in our lifetime that they've dared to begin asking questions about paedophile priests and the sexual proclivities of bishops.

The BBC is still afraid to robustly question Jewish leaders - they don't want to be accused of anti-Semitism.

And they're even more afraid of properly questioning Muslim leaders: not only are they fearful of accusations of Islamophobia and racism, they're also (rightly) afraid of death threats against their presenters and other staff.

There aren't very many Christian nutters around nowadays that would perpetrate actual violence against "blasphemers", but regrettably there are still loads of Muslim nutters only too ready to kill in the name of their God.

Best way to deal with them, in my opinion, is to find journalists and other staff prepared to take the risk of proper interviews, and management with enough spine to air those interviews. Failing that, don't give the leaders any air time at all, and instead repeatedly make it clear that, "we are unable to interview any Muslim leaders because of repeated death threats made against our staff."
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

Ah, labour just had the results of their report (commissioned by the corbyn leadership ) recommending:


‘In recognition of the past wrongdoings of the British state, the new constitution should make an unreserved apology to all of the countries of the world that the Empire invaded and negatively impacted.
In addition, the British state should set up a reparations fund as part of the constitution, which offers financial assistance to communities across the world that can show loss and detriment as a result of the actions of the British state.’ “

Yeah, that will help win back the lost patriotic vote.
Anaxagoras
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Anaxagoras »

Giz wrote: Tue Feb 16, 2021 1:42 am Ah, labour just had the results of their report (commissioned by the corbyn leadership ) recommending:


‘In recognition of the past wrongdoings of the British state, the new constitution should make an unreserved apology to all of the countries of the world that the Empire invaded and negatively impacted.
In addition, the British state should set up a reparations fund as part of the constitution, which offers financial assistance to communities across the world that can show loss and detriment as a result of the actions of the British state.’ “

Yeah, that will help win back the lost patriotic vote.
America is a former British colony (actually 13 states are former British colonies if you want to get technical). Do we get reparations too? :freedom:
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Anaxagoras wrote: Tue Feb 16, 2021 2:49 am
Giz wrote: Tue Feb 16, 2021 1:42 am Ah, labour just had the results of their report (commissioned by the corbyn leadership ) recommending:


‘In recognition of the past wrongdoings of the British state, the new constitution should make an unreserved apology to all of the countries of the world that the Empire invaded and negatively impacted.
In addition, the British state should set up a reparations fund as part of the constitution, which offers financial assistance to communities across the world that can show loss and detriment as a result of the actions of the British state.’ “

Yeah, that will help win back the lost patriotic vote.
America is a former British colony (actually 13 states are former British colonies if you want to get technical). Do we get reparations too? :freedom:
Only if you use it to pay off descendants of slaves.

Too soon?
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

ceptimus wrote: Mon Feb 15, 2021 3:00 pm Best way to deal with them, in my opinion, is to find journalists and other staff prepared to take the risk of proper interviews, and management with enough spine to air those interviews. Failing that, don't give the leaders any air time at all, and instead repeatedly make it clear that, "we are unable to interview any Muslim leaders because of repeated death threats made against our staff."
Not to be too critical – solutions have to be found – but I see two (at least) problems with that:
  • the "risky" behavior exposes immediately to a Charlie Hebdo type of terror. And don't forget that before their murders they had to live under police protection for years and that the paper's premises got set on fire;
  • the silent way won't fly as money will talk (either because management / the owners will be unhappy, or because the competition won't collaborate) and the move, I fear, will immediately be recast as "Ha! See how we shut down these islamophobes!"
:|
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Witness wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:27 am
Witness wrote: Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:51 pm
Harry Dunn death: US says extradition request 'highly inappropriate'
https://news.sky.com/story/anne-sacoola ... h-11905753
Follow-up:
Harry Dunn death: US immunity rule used by Anne Sacoolas closed

The UK and the US have agreed to amend an "anomaly" that allowed Harry Dunn death suspect Anne Sacoolas to claim diplomatic immunity.
...
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-53500449
U.S. Court Sides With Family Of Man Killed In Crash Involving Diplomat's Wife

A wrongful death lawsuit filed by the parents of Harry Dunn, who police say died after being hit by a vehicle driven by the wife of a U.S. diplomat, will proceed in Virginia, a federal judge ruled Tuesday. The driver, Anne Sacoolas, had asked the judge to dismiss the U.S. case to compel Dunn's family to pursue the lawsuit in U.K. courts.

Sacoolas has admitted to driving on the wrong side of the road when her SUV struck Dunn, who was 19. But she has also claimed diplomatic immunity in Dunn's death.

Dunn's family filed the lawsuit against Sacoolas and her husband, Jonathan, in September, seeking a jury trial. They accuse Anne Sacoolas not only of causing Harry Dunn's death but also of failing to call the police or an ambulance. They also say she fled to the U.S. less than a month after the incident, despite promising to cooperate with the British police investigation — an inquiry that later resulted in a criminal charge.

Because Sacoolas has refused to return to the U.K. for either depositions or a trial and because the U.S. has refused a request to extradite her, the Dunns say their only option was to file the lawsuit in Virginia.

In response, the Sacoolases asked a federal court to dismiss the case, saying the matter should be resolved in the U.K. instead. And the couple says that because the two of them view the case as centering on civil damages related to a wrongful death, their presence would not be required in a British court.

Senior U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III denied the Sacoolases' motion to dismiss the case in Virginia, citing "an obvious inconsistency" in the defendants' position regarding the venue and the circumstances. He also said there could well be a need for Anne Sacoolas to testify in court, and he noted that it's not clear how she would do that if the lawsuit were filed in the U.K. instead of in the United States.
https://www.npr.org/2021/02/16/96843357 ... -virginia?

I'm surprised.
Hotarubi
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Witness wrote: Tue Feb 16, 2021 3:33 am
ceptimus wrote: Mon Feb 15, 2021 3:00 pm Best way to deal with them, in my opinion, is to find journalists and other staff prepared to take the risk of proper interviews, and management with enough spine to air those interviews. Failing that, don't give the leaders any air time at all, and instead repeatedly make it clear that, "we are unable to interview any Muslim leaders because of repeated death threats made against our staff."
Not to be too critical – solutions have to be found – but I see two (at least) problems with that:
  • the "risky" behavior exposes immediately to a Charlie Hebdo type of terror. And don't forget that before their murders they had to live under police protection for years and that the paper's premises got set on fire;
  • the silent way won't fly as money will talk (either because management / the owners will be unhappy, or because the competition won't collaborate) and the move, I fear, will immediately be recast as "Ha! See how we shut down these islamophobes!"
:|
Did anyone actually listen to the interview. Emma Barnett was being a dick trying to lead ZM into a rabbit hole of criticism of Islam and ZM didnt fall for it. Barnett asked a question irrelevant to ZMs appointment, didnt get the answer she wanted and then badgered Zara for a different answer.

The MCB has zero influence over the Islamic religion. Never has.

That being said, removing the interview was just dumb as hammers
Rob Lister
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Rob Lister »

Witness wrote: Thu Feb 18, 2021 1:38 am
Senior U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III denied the Sacoolases' motion to dismiss the case in Virginia, citing "an obvious inconsistency" in the defendants' position regarding the venue and the circumstances. He also said there could well be a need for Anne Sacoolas to testify in court, and he noted that it's not clear how she would do that if the lawsuit were filed in the U.K. instead of in the United States.
https://www.npr.org/2021/02/16/96843357 ... -virginia?

I'm surprised.
I am too. Did she, or did she not have diplomatic immunity? I believe she did.
Diplomatic Immunity for Embassy Personnel

Diplomatic agents—that is, high ranking embassy officials (ambassadors, for example) who serve the function of dealing directly with their host country's officials on behalf of their home country—enjoy the highest degree of immunity. The same applies to their family members.

The police cannot detain them, arrest them, or search or seize their houses and other property. Diplomats cannot be prosecuted or otherwise forced to appear in criminal court. Nor can they be sued in civil courts, except for their personal (non-official) involvement in certain commercial, real-estate, or inheritance-related matters, or for their separate professional activities.

So, for example: An ambassador who is sued for failing to pay her personal home mortgage premium might lose title to her house but cannot be forced to pay damages and may not be evicted.
https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia ... unity.html

I'm happy to leave it to the lawyers.
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Boris Johnson's 'union adviser' Oliver Lewis quits after two weeks

Boris Johnson's main adviser on keeping the UK together has departed, saying his position was made "untenable" by others within Downing Street.

Oliver Lewis, an ally of the prime minister's former chief adviser, Dominic Cummings, was a key part of the campaign for the UK to leave the EU.

His departure comes as the Scottish National Party is calling for another referendum on independence.

Mr Lewis was confirmed in his role just two weeks ago.

He replaced Luke Graham, a former Conservative MP.

Downing Street declined to comment on staffing matters.

Following Mr Lewis's departure, Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, tweeted: "Disunity in the Union unit. Or maybe just despair at realising how threadbare the case for it is."

The SNP's Westminster deputy leader Kirsten Oswald claimed Mr Johnson's "taxpayer-funded anti-independence campaign is completely falling apart".

"As support for independence grows, the Tories are losing advisers like rats on a sinking ship," she said.

"People in Scotland have a right to determine their own future in a post-pandemic referendum."
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-56128879
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

This is actually Irish, but whatevs. The Martin Mc Guinness foundation has announced a poetry competition in honour of the late terrorist who became a “man of peace”. Douglas murray has produced:

When Martin McGuinness of Derry
Met up with Charon for the ferry
The boatman said ‘Marty
My thanks are most hearty
For all that custom you sent me, with Gerry.'
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

UK asylum policy:


You are in:
“ double rapist must be allowed to stay in the UK on human-rights grounds because he would face ‘degrading’ treatment in his home country, and due to his poor ‘mental health’. ”

You are not:
“ Maira Shahbaz, a 14-year-old Catholic schoolgirl, claims to have been kidnapped at gunpoint by three men in her neighbourhood of Faisalabad, in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The assailants recorded themselves raping her and threatened the public release of the footage. She says she was forced to marry one of them – 45-year-old Mohamad Nakash Tariq – and was coerced into signing a statement affirming her conversion to Islam.
Shahbaz is one of the 1,000-plus Christian and Hindu girls in Pakistan who are kidnapped, forced to marry their captors, and compelled to sign statements of conversion every year.

Shahbaz was able to escape Nakash’s home and was placed in a women’s shelter by local authorities. However, the Lahore High Court later ruled that the marriage and conversion were valid and that she should therefore be ‘returned’ to her husband. She managed to once again escape with the help of relatives. Nakash subsequently denounced her relatives for ‘kidnapping’ her and accused Shahbaz of apostasy, a crime which often carries the death penalty in Pakistan. Given the slew of abuse and death threats she and her relatives received, and the Pakistani legal system’s inability to handle her case appropriately, Shahbaz’s lawyer believes that to remain in Pakistan is nothing short of a death sentence for the family.“
Anaxagoras
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Anaxagoras »

As deserving as she might be, has she actually made a request for asylum? I expect it helps to actually be in the UK or at the border or even an embassy or consulate of the UK in order to apply for asylum.
Giz
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Giz »

Yep:

A video statement from Shahbaz was released at a parliamentary event on 25 November marking #RedWednesday, an ACN campaign against religious persecution.

Also:
petition was delivered to Fiona Bruce, the prime minister’s special envoy for freedom of religion or belief.
Anaxagoras
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Anaxagoras »

Shamima Begum, UK teen who joined ISIS, not allowed to return home to fight for citizenship, court rules
(CNN) The UK Supreme Court ruled Friday that "ISIS bride" Shamima Begum cannot return to the United Kingdom to appeal the revocation of her UK citizenship.

The President of the Supreme Court, Lord Robert Reed, said that the UK Court of Appeal made four errors last year when it ruled that Begum should be allowed to return to the UK to carry out her appeal.
Begum was 15 years old when in 2015 she left the UK with two school friends to join ISIS in Syria. She was stripped of her British citizenship by then-Home Secretary Sajid Javid on February 19, 2019 upon being discovered in a northern Syrian refugee camp.
Well, tough shit. Make better life choices.
ceptimus
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Re: The UK thread

Post by ceptimus »

Even though she's not been allowed back, UK taxpayers are still paying all the legal costs: many tens of thousands of pounds already, probably hundreds of thousands, and still ongoing. The ruling was just about her not being allowed to return for her appeal - but the appeal itself is just postponed, not yet complete. As always, the only people guaranteed not to lose financially are the lawyers.
Witness
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Witness »

Not a single case of flu detected by Public Health England this year as Covid restrictions suppress virus

Experts say decline in infections could justify continued use of hand sanitiser and masks following coronavirus pandemic

Not a single case of influenza has been detected by public health officials in England for the past seven weeks, with infection rates at historic lows amid the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.

The social restrictions brought in to curb transmission of coronavirus, combined with increased uptake of the flu vaccine, have both been credited with driving down infections.

Thousands of swab samples are processed and analysed by scientists at Public Health England (PHE) every week to survey the prevalence of different respiratory diseases in the population.

But of the 685,243 samples that have been reviewed at PHE’s laboratories since the first week of January, not a single one has tested positive for influenza.

In the week up to 31 December 2020, just one case of flu was confirmed by laboratory analysis.

Dr Vanessa Saliba, head of flu at PHE, told The Independent: “The decrease in flu cases this year is likely due to changes in our behaviour, such as social distancing, face coverings and handwashing, as well as the reduction in international travel.
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/heal ... 05124.html

But are we able to learn?
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Between 1 January and 31 August 2020, 52,327 deaths in England and Wales involved COVID-19. Out of these, 48,168 deaths were due to COVID-19: that is, COVID-19 was the underlying cause. This was 12.4% of all deaths for the period (389,835 deaths). In the same period 69,781 deaths involved pneumonia and 506 deaths involved influenza: out of these, 13,619 and 394 deaths were due to pneumonia and influenza respectively (3.5% and 0.1% of all deaths).

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulation ... -pneumonia

"The story is in the tellin,' Mr Frodo"
Anaxagoras
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Anaxagoras »

I think we're talking about different time periods.

"This year" in the above means 2021, not 2020. It says "the past seven weeks".
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Re: The UK thread

Post by Hotarubi »

Apologies, I was thrown by "2020".

However, Ive already found data detailing about 300 odd weekly deaths in 2021 where the underlying cause is influenza or pneumonia. Its just being reported as "something else."

Unfortunately Im on my phone at work which basically means I cant be bothered to jump through the hoops necessary to post the excel doc right now. Little digging and youll find it