A ghost haunts Britain
Yes, it’s a Marx pun. Go read him, he’s still right.
Even if she’s still somewhat alive, the ghost of Maggie Thatcher is still haunting the bleak landscape of British politics and will continue to do so until someone will plainly come out and call the old hag on her deeds- the destruction of the bespoken British manufacturing industry.
It is highly amusing that Dave Camoron, the guy who campaigned on not being like the tories of decades past felt the inescapable urge to invite the old mummy Thatcher to yet again befoul the No10 and the British politics. If Dave would have had a brain, he would have probably refrained from such a chutzpah-ish act until he ran a government slightly less fragile than a china cup riddled with cracks.
It’s painfully obvious that Dave is an idiot, but we already knew that. The fact that he honestly believes that he can get away with that barbaric budget already shows that he’s as dumb as he is inbred, but that’s beside the point.
Most Brits with a brain (granted there aren’t many of those) will admit to the fact that the Thatcher years were a nightmare. What they don’t understand is that the current predicament this poor island finds itself going through is a direct consequence of those years.
The wholesale of council houses is the reason for today’s housing shortages and the dismantling of the manufacturing industry is the reason for today’s sluggish attempt at a recovery and possible double dip recession. Blame Labour as much as you want, they did bring the country 10 years of continuous growth before the global recession engineered by people like Nick Clegg hit. But truth be told, you cannot undo decades of idiotic policing in 10 years, not when you actually want to treat everyone fairly, and therein lies the problem.
It takes a long time to build a manufacturing industry, and it’s hard as fuck. Factories don’t grow overnight, and there is no good reason on God’ s green earth at AD 2010 for any investor to build a factory in a first world country when there are many of them already built in Eastern Europe, when the workforce is cheaper and the governments more pliable.
So Camoron wants business to come to Britain. Noble aspiration, but no businessman worth his bottomline would do that. Quite frankly, it’s a shitty investment. And to top that, the condem abomination decided to cut the subsidies for initiatives that would create jobs in areas already hit by the Tory nightmare 20 something years ago. The case of the Sheffield Forgemasters is telling- and incidentally in Sheffield of all places, the people of the doomed constituency that put Nick Clegg in the Parliament are getting mightily punished for their lack of judgement. Irony? Sure, but it hurts people whose only fault is being too stupid to vote for their own wellbeing.
30 Jun 2010 Comments Off on A ghost haunts Britain
A ghost haunts Britain
30 Jun 2010 2 Comments
The lesson of 22nd June 2010
It’s pretty simple: the stupid shouldn’t vote.
Most of the people voting Tory aren’t rich. I wish Britain had 36% rich people, but that ain’t true. Yes, from a rich person’s POV, it makes sense to vote tory. After all, they are the party of the rich, and no rich men government will ever raise taxes on its own.
I used to joke about 2 months ago that David Cameron was running to make sure he’ll never have to pay taxes on his wife’s large estate. I see with sadness and a bitter satisfaction that I was probably right as the aptly named condem government delivers a budget that hits everyone but the rich people it’s comprised from. Go figure.
So why did people vote Tory? It’s first worth remembering some hard truths more Brits will never willingly acknowledge, partly because they lack the social and historical awareness, and partly because, let’s face it, they’re stupid. You don’t get smart people with a bad state education system, and Britain has not seen a decent education system in decades, unless you can afford to send your spawn to Eton or other expensive obedience schools for the rich and inbred.
The first of these hard truths is that people forget. The average Tory voter is not, by any stretch of the imagination, rich , or even young. The tory voter is invariably white, middle class and averagely educated with a college degree at best. Incidentally the same group with the highest racist quotient in the country.
Most of these people have lived through the 80’s, and if you grill them long enough- I like to, but I’m a horrible foreigner with more misanthropy to my name than it should be legally allowed- will admit that things weren’t well at all under Thatcher. But themselves or their parents may have enjoyed the marginal benefits of the time- like buying for cheap a squalid council townhouse the size of a shoebox, or having a mediocre office job, and that’s what they remember. It is common knowledge that the human brain has evolved an infinite capacity to forget the bad stuff, and this is what these people are doing.
It is my personal belief that at least part of the reason for the high tory voter turnout lays within racism. The fact that the tory voters and the most prominently racist strata of the society are identical is no accident. Of course, these people would not even remotely regard themselves as racist. The person who asks when interviewing a candidate who happens to be an immigrant who’s lived in the country for a decade “how do I know you won’t leave if you get offered a good job in your home country” is a racist and doesn’t know it. The lovely white middle class elderly ladies who ride the bus with me every morning and give me disapproving looks from their prim and proper faces and from under their perfectly permed white bluish coifs don’t regard themselves as racist even as they live in remote all white villages and are scandalized at the idea of their grandchildren dating anyone who’s not English, fair skinned and middle class.
The amount of immigrants, and most importantly of successful immigrants in this country has created a horrid backlash from the people who have no problem with the likes of me, as long as we are humble, invisible and taking only the dirty and low paid jobs the Brits are too good for. None of these people have a problem with an Arabic or Pakistani street cleaner or taxi driver, but they sure as hell have a problem with the likes of me.
The truth of the matter lays with the natural growth or lack thereof in Britain. Quite frankly, Brits aren’t breeding at the rate they’re supposed to do it, which means a population crisis haunts the dreams of anyone with a brain and a valid concern for the country’s future. Add to that a bad education system and the result is that there is a higher demand for highly qualified workers than Britain can fulfil on its own. While being asked to help my British born colleagues with the spelling of certain words of their own language is still amusing, it is a symptom that something’s very rotten in Britain.
The elderly and middle aged who voted Tory are already seeing the price of their foolishness and will probably cry soon in their lavender smelling immaculate handkerchiefs. The cutting of student places and increasing of tuition fees guarantees that the next generation will be uneducated and underqualified in a world where competition has already become too hard for the western countries to keep up with. The cuts of today ensure that in 15 years time Britain will cry for educated immigrants to come and fill the well paid jobs, however few of those might still exist at the time.
In the mean time, I am starting a Cameron puppet business. I have a feeling there will be a huge demand of those in a couple of months, for protesters to burn in effigy. Of course, that will probably serve no purpose but to make the idiots feel better.
The fate of Britain as it is lies now with the LibDem MPs. Of course Camoron felt the urge to tell them yesterday that they weren’t being taken for a ride. However, it is safe to say that probably even the dumbest of them (Nick Clegg by the looks of it) can already tell that they aren’t going to see double digits in an election any time soon, and the VAT increase is pretty telling. If I was stupid enough to have voted LibDem ( I’m not) I would probably slap myself in the mirror, which is, I suspect, what the LibDem voters are doing anyway.
The numbers are telling too. Yes, the LibDems have gone down 8% in popularity. However that’s 8% of the whole populus. In real numbers, those 8% are 1/3 of their votes at the last election. Which, for less than 2 months in office, is pretty dire, and as the condem cuts hit, those numbers will continue to plunge lower than Katie Price’s cleavage or Nick Clegg’s ethics.
In all this, it is interesting to look at Vince Cable’s position. I have always suspected the man to be a socialist in disguise, and his recent subversive statements prove my point. His recent admission that The LibDem VAT bomb campaign was a fraud paints an even more revealing picture of the Libdem hypocrisy than ever before- although he did good to show that the fault for the failed talks with labour lies solely on Nick Clegg.
All these little bits of info paint a picture obvious already to those of us who saw through Clegg long before he started to lick Cameron’s ass in public. So what IS Cable doing collaborating with Darth Osbourne?
15 May 2010 2 Comments
Part 1- Davey and Nick
I am not going to talk here about percentages. I know the official results.
The problem with the official results is that, at the end of the day, nobody won by numbers. A badly designed electoral system allowed the party who spent a ton of Murdoch’s cash to claim a very painful non victory- if after 3 years of recession and having an unlimited spending budget to throw shit at your betters you still barely manage to squeeze out a measly 36%… no offence but you need to get the hell out of politics and go raise Chihuahuas for guarding duties.
Which incidentally seems to be the near future of David Cameron. This squeaky clean, bred to lead millionaire who was apparently the best thing the Tories could put out to repair their image of nasty xenophobic and prejudiced assholes has managed the incredible performance of bringing upon himself the ire of not only Labour- who could be accused of being bitter losers but also that of a great number of his own MPs.
In and by itself, this is an amazing performance. In an ideal world, Davey boy expected to sail into power in a wave of universal approval from the proles who would wet their pants at the idea of a millionaire as PM in times of recession. Maybe in his mind, that’s how he sees it. I mean, we all know the aristocracy has a tendency to be inbred, and it’s enough to see Davey and Nick Clegg together to realize they come from the same bad blood and faulty genes. The weak facial structure, the doughy skin, the softness! Whatever these two project it sure as hell isn’t character, strength or even intelligence.
2 days after cobbling together one of the most bizarre chimaeras known to mankind, Davey has managed to squander whatever good will the general populous normally has towards a new government, especially in such shitty times as the current ones.
Davey has managed to show in this short time that he knows nothing about making a Government- his choices suggesting that he had not given even a remote thought to what to do if he wins, that he understands nothing about the British democracy, and that he is, right about now, shitting his pants in fear of being turned out of No 10 with a firm foot up his aristocratic bottom.
Aside from the very stupid, there is no half-sentient creature in Great Britain that could consider the ConDem government anything but a sad joke paid to us stupid schmucks aka the UK people. The appointment of Theresa May as Minister of Equalities could only be equalled in ridiculousness by having Martin Luther King’s daughter marry a KKK member. The whole world is laughing at us, and not in the normal good natured way, but in one that says “ Wow, the Brits sure managed to overthrow the Americans from the top position as the dumbest nation on Earth”.
And that’s just the most innocent of Davey’s mistakes, I can see him running around like a somewhat confused purebred (and thus slightly stupid) Corgi “ A woman, we need a woman on the Cabinet or else these people *snort* shall revolt!! Whatever shall we do? Do we even have any women in our beloved party?”
My money is on Davey appointing Theresa May because she was the only woman Tory whose name he could remember- aside from Holy Margaret whose picture probably hangs in his bedroom, above the conjugal bed where he just gave Nick Clegg a reason to smile again like a maniac. A clue to Davey boy- pot works just as well.
I am not going to even comment on the marvellous idea to not make Vince Cable- probably the only competent person in this whole mess posing as our Government – Chancellor. But then again we already know Davey ain’t that smart – his best intellectual feat to date being memorising the names of the Queen’s Corgis- which, like Davey, are purebred, aristocratic, utterly stupid, ugly and annoying and in dire need of a close encounter with a hungry Bullterrier.
Davey’s logic in not putting Vince Cable where he could be most useful seems to be that his dear chum George has more money therefore he’s better with them. Which is the same logic that would see an STD-ridden homeless man appointed Consultant Dermatologist at the Royal Infirmary – if he has so many he definitely knows how to do with them right?
However, even Davey is aware that his coalition is as stable as Prince Harry after hitting the whiskey and thus liable to do all sorts of crazy things like fall on its ass, wear a Nazi uniform or such other amusing yet highly embarrassing antics.
Therefore, in one of his rare moments of lucidity, he rang his valet, requested a clean pair of 5000£ a pair underwear woven from the eyelashes of orphaned maids in some third world country, and started to think:
“ How do I make sure Nick doesn’t try to double-cross me out of my rightfully earned position as Prime Minister?”
And this is how the 55% rule was born. The idea being that with the current configuration of the Parlament, it’s utterly impossible to achieve it.
Before those of you lacking the intellect to figure out you are already being sodomized by the ConDem golem start shouting “But the confidence vote stays at the same percentage” let me say one thing to you
“ Shut the fuck up you mindless twits”
The way the British Politics works, and has worked well for a long while, is that a non confidence vote brings down the government, which leads to the dissolution of Parlament. The destitute Prime Minister, tail wedged firmly between legs or some other poor schmuck appointed Prime Minister for the purpose will go to the Queen and tell her “ Your Majesty, we are a bunch of incompetent numbnuts whose existence is a blight on the face of existence. Please kindly dissolve the Parlament so your subjects have a chance to elect some slightly less dumb assholes to muck things up”.
You see, a vote of non confidence is NOT addressed to the Government only, but to whoever put them there, and is de facto a vote of non confidence addressed to the majority who formed the Government. As such, it is logical that a dissolution of the Parlament should follow such a vote.
The 55% thing, unfortunately coupled with the fixed Parlament measure requested by the LibDems (who are not stupid enough to not realize that they’re not going to see numbers in the double digits again at any election this decade or the next) means that even if the LibDems turn tails on their unlikely bedmates, Davey will remain in power. If the non confidence vote is not followed by a Parlament dissolution, there is nothing to prevent the Tories from making another unholy alliance- with the BNP or such and have the same Davey form the new government, which will probably be even worse than ConDem, since it is pretty logical the LibDem will take their braincells back when the shameful divorce occurs.
Now that might sound good to Davey because he’s not even in the same plane of existence with the concept of intelligence, but it rings a hell of a lot of alarm bells in the heads of his betters, some of who are amongst the peers and Mps of his own party.
It is very obvious Davey didn’t think this through- because if he had the capacity to perform such a task he would have realised that there are high chances his party will lose the next elections painfully, and then he will be stuck on the Oppo bench with a Labour Government he can’t get rid of.
Now there are people who would say “But if ConDem falls, Labour could make a new alliance with the LibDems and form a new government without the need for new elections”. The problem the people who think such nonsense have is that they are utterly stupid. The public outrage that followed the LibDem whoring out to the Tories has ensured that nobody with an IQ higher than their shoe size would want to associate with them ever again. Of course Nicky wants a fixed term Parlament- because he’s not dumb enough to not realize that maybe only his beloved Maggie and the German guy with the moustache looking like fly shit are slightly more hated than he is right about now.
As stated before, the Tory MPs and peers are actually smart enough to realize this idea should compete for the Most Idiotic Idea Award. When you have such venerable fossils like the Tory peers come out to tell you that you fucked up, its time to go back to the mansion and lock yourself in the booze cabinet for the next decade.
The Liberal Democrats, the other half of this bizarre contraption, find themselves in the position of a prostitute who gets beaten up and robbed after providing her services. Unfortunately, unlike that poor prostitute who probably has some reasons for what she is doing ( poverty, human traffic, mental illness etc) and who therefore deserves compassion, the LibDems find themselves in the position of realizing that they sold themselves for a couple of rotten beans who aren’t even magic.
I am not even going to comment on the fact that the party who claimed to believe in a fair electoral system sold out most of its voters for some minor seats in the Government, and that despite the fact that they know the results of the latest lections are as close to the will of the voters as the Queen to a honest day’s work, they are willing to accept the faulty system as long as it serves them. Now that might normally work in the world of Nick Clegg, however it doesn’t for the vast majority of LibDem voters who *gasp* are actually Liberal and bought Clegg’s malarkey about how he was never going to join forces with Dave Vader and how voting LibDem meant keeping the Tories out.
The above paragraph and the following refer to the good and decent LibDem voters who are actually Liberal and voted for Nicky because they actually thought he was honest. Now these people, as seen on these here interwebs, have already realised that they were screwed and decided to do something about it. I am going to be kind and not rub it in to them about the fact that once a tory always a tory or that they expected a former lobbyist to be liberal.
Everybody makes mistakes, and I believe the mistake of this great number of honest decent people was that they assumed Nicky boy was one of them, as in Liberal and honest.
These people, and some of them are LibDem MPs, have already realised they have been screwed, and I do believe in the black frozen space where I was supposed to have a heart that they will do the right thing.
The LibDems that are so hysterically happy that they’re no longer on the Oppo bench that they will go to great lengths to excuse and justify all of the ConDem’s shit because “ Oh my God we are finally in power” ?
Those people deserve to die in a large fire, and I bet there’s a long queue of people willing to lit it.
09 May 2010 1 Comment
I know a lot of people voted LibDem because they regarded it as an alternative to the British politics as usual.
These people might have made an awful mistake and allowed their otherwise righteous mistrust of Gordon Brown to affect their judgement.
I dislike Gordon Brown as a politician, but I can give him credit for what he has done. 10 years of prosperity under labour should not be thrown away and forgotten for reasons not well thought out. Gordon Brown has done a great job to keep the economy going and prevent the more painful effects of the global recession.
I’m an immigrant. Labour made this country into my home. If I go out on the street, I’ll see thousands of people who have Labour to thank for the same.
Maybe we don’t matter.
But we are people too. Some of us are the people who paid the price for the West’s prosperity for centuries.
While the West was building cathedrals and developing philosophical systems, people from the Danube and Carpathians kept the invader Ottoman Turks out of Europe. In WW1 we fought and weakened the German and Austro Hungarian armies at bay until we only had one third of our country left. We never got any help.
In WW2, after the great powers of the West betrayed the military agreements they had with the small countries in central and eastern Europe, leaving them prey to
Nazi Germany, we were left to fend for ourselves. We did. So did the Czechs, the Serbians… and as thanks for our aid we were given as a gift to Stalin, to buy his cooperation and pacify him for after the war.
i’m 35. I was born under communism. I was 14 in 1989, and , as a stupid child in December 1989 I ran away from home to be part in our Revolution. 11 thousand people died.
many of the people living now in England even though we weren’t born here have similar stories, or worse. We came here, and Labour England received us as friends.
We worked. We opened businesses. We did our best. We left everything we had behind and came to England and called it home, and England was good to us. We didn’t come here to beg. We came looking for a chance we didn’t have back home, for historical reasons England may or may not have had a part in creating.
Labour Britain was a good country and respected worldwide. It recognized and honoured its historical duties. Labour Britain was a good home to us, and to British people. Poor people who never had a choice bettered their lives. Poor people of Britain lived better. There were new jobs created. Poverty disappeared and Britain was prosperous, and nobody can deny this.
Then came the global recession. Architectured by the people who fought to lower the world’s banking regulations. One of these people was Nick Clegg. leader of the LibDems and one time lobbyist for RBS. We have seen how RBS ended, and Nick Clegg is aware enough of his nefarious implication in this to keep it off his official website. Those who fell to Cleggmania- not a lot of them since Lib Dems did not win a lot more over what they already had in terms of percentages- chose to turn a blind eye to this, despite it being a good sign of what lies behind Clegg’s facade.
And now Clegg and Cameron are inching towards an agreement. The vote that many good people gave to Clegg in hope of needed reforms will go towards the Tories, and those who have read Cameron’s program know what those are about.
We live in a bad world, and people never learn. In 2000, a fraction of well intended people who chose to vote for Nader ended up giving the world GW Bush.
Tell me, Clegg voters- if your votes only serve to bring a Tory government and kick Britain back into the 19th century, are you going to at least have the decency to say “Sorry”?
remember: if Cameron and Clegg do ally, you will have it worse than me. I can always leave. I’m Jewish and Romanian, I know more about Ubi bene ibi patria than anyone.
02 May 2010 Comments Off on Solomon’s choice 3- Labour losing the racist vote
Who will vote for Labour? All British citizens born abroad will, that’s for sure. Why? Because Labour made Britain into a tolerant country, well to be precise it dragged Britain kicking and screaming into the 21st century. A vote aginst Labour i not a vote against politicians- it is a vote against all that Labour has acocmplished in the past 13 years.
These things include open mindedness and tolerance, a livable minimum wage, a social security net that ensured the UK did not allow its people to die of misery when hit by hard times. They also include prosperity for 11 out of these 14 years.
The people who hate Labour are the people who hate me and people like me. White middle class British people who hate the idea of us immigrants coming to their country and having the audacity of wanting to live as well as they do. They hate me and you, and pretty much everyone in my city, because we aren’t white, British and Protestant.
These are the people who move to remote villages far away because they can’t stand sharing a city with people unlike themselves.
But they don’t only hate us. They hate the poor people forced to live on benefits as well. They hate everyone unliek themselves, and they will vote with the party that destroyed the UK’s manufacturing eonomy, becase they hate us that much. The Tories have made it abundantly clear that they will reduce the influx of non white people in this country – what else is a cap on Commonwealth immigrations but a cap on how many brown people are allowed to move here?
And don’t be fooled by the idea that if you’re already a British citizen this can’t affect you. These people hate YOU. If you are black, south asian, east asian, anything but white, fair skinned and British, they hate you. If you’re Irish, welsh, polish, Romanian, jewish- a vote for the Tories is a vote that tells us that we aren’t welcome here.
The Tories want to bring Britain back to being a racist, homophobic country where only the right coloured people can live.
30 Apr 2010 Comments Off on Race war as a convenient smokescreen for class war II- The Middle Class bribe
It would probably not surprise anyone to know that am a fairly big fan of Joe Bageant’s view on class, despite his sexist views and erroneous assertions on such subjects as Hillary Clinton.
However,ol Joe is right. Class IS the problem.
I also happen to agree with ol Joe regarding the utter lack of compassion exhibited by the people calling themselves Western Liberals. Like him, I have an utter sense of loathing for said category.
I always regarded the Liberal doctrine as one applied from above. The benevolent and enlightened middle class Liberals, generously bestowing gifts on the poor beneath them. The general assumption of these people is that the poor should be grateful for their table scraps and embrace what is given to them.
This is very visible in the way western liberals feel so self righteous about mocking and laughing at the poor folk of a different political persuasion. Even some of the best amongst them, like Violet Socks, seem to feel entitled to laugh and mock the poor folk who have the audacity to not vote Democrat and not think like the Western Liberals want them to think.
And God help you if you call them on it.
Truth be told, the Western Liberals are in no way shape or form any better than their Republican counterparts. maybe just a little bit more hypocritical and at the same time more naive.
In America, these are the people who now mourn the loss of their country as it used to be under the all praised and revered Bill Clinton. Oh yeah, they lived well under good ole Bill.
My friends from Serbia didn’t. They saw their country bombed to the ground, civilians murdered by the US air forces. Churches full of civilians burned to the ground. I SAW the maternity in Belgrade bombed by US planes… and the poor Serbians who pointlessly tried to defend it with their own bodies.
This happened under Bill Clinton.
The embargo on Iraq happened under Bill Clinton. Those half a million children dead by illness and radiation from the US DUI shells, and the adults, ad the misery inflicted upon Iraq after 1992. those are all on Bill’s head.
But try to tel that to the poow widdle liberals who worship him. After al, they lived damn well under Bill, and who the fuck cares about those brown people anyway. Or poor whites in Serbia.
This is the class war. These people love brown and poor people as long as they don’t contradict their worldview. Once they do, no holds are barred.
The ONLY thing these people love is themselves the so-called Middle Class. The big crying fits you see on all of the big liberal blogs about the disappearance of the Middle Class? it’s their survival instinct.
The Middle Class is a lie. There’s no such thing. It’s the bait to lull people into not fighting the system. A bribe.Why fight the system to get equality for all when you can easily be middle class, and have all those nice things you don’t need to pay for up front. Happiness bought on credit sure dulls class and justice sense doesn’t it?
It’s the perfect scam isn’t it?
Truth be told, if you depend on wages to survive, you’re working class and regardless what you tell yourself, you have just as much importance in the eyes of the powers that be. The only difference between the so-called middle class and the so-called working class is the amount of shit they pretend to be owning albeit it’s the bank or credit card company who does.
Now what is normally understood by “working class” is just the bottom of the real working class barrel. People too busy surviving to be able to live. A lot of them are poor whites, townies as they’re called in Britain, white trash or rednecks as they’re called in the USA. Not necessarily white either, but there isn’t a term for poor black people or poor Latinos, maybe because the default state of most non whites is poor anyway.
But that’s not the point.
People who are too busy scrapping off a living don’t revolt unless they starve to death. The wonderfulness of the credit slavery capitalism is that people don’t own shit- but most of them don’t know it. The house is owned by the bank. The furniture, appliances, car are owned by the bank or catalog companies as well, and paid for at thrice the actual price,
Payday comes and 70% of it goes on installments and bills. The rest is enough to buy food. The wait for the next payday starts again and again and again.
People living from payday to payday, who need that check to keep a roof over their children’s heads and food on teh table, they’re not going to risk the little safety they have. They’re not going to revolt.
The so-called middle class, who have somewhat more shit and a bit of disposable income are too busy feeling self-righteous to revolt. The human animal is a petty thing, and having more than your neighbour is as good of a motivation as any.
So that’s how imperialism works.
The poor are kept in lull of half security and half need to survive by hanging by their teeth. The alleged middle class are being bribed with things they don’t really own.
Someone else pays.
They just don’t get it. Those who should revolt can’t, and those who can won’t.
And this works for all colors and races. Middle class Blacks and latinos move out of the hood faster than you can say meow. Middle class south Asians in England live in small villages and their kids have fancy English accents. They work in the same places, go to the same clubs and their kids prep for the same colleges.
Working class whites and blacks and latinos and south asians and arabs living in the west however?
They’re in the same shit.
And that’s where the smokescreen thing comes in.
22 Apr 2010 Comments Off on Solomon’s choice, part 2
One short addition to what purports to be a series.
According to a report in The Independent, Mr Lewis wrote to a constituent last week saying he had been “very strongly against” lowering the age of consent for gays from 18 to 16 because “there is a seriously increased risk of HIV infection arising from male homosexual activity”.
The age of consent for gay men was lowered from 18 to 16 in 2000.
Mr Lewis, 58, wrote: “When it comes to legalising practices that involve serious risk, I believe the higher limit should apply. This is the reason we no longer allow 16- and 17-year-olds into front line situations in the armed forces, for example.”
Mr Lewis previously opposed adoptions by gay couples and also campaigned against the repeal of laws preventing schools from promoting homosexuality.
Now isn’t that inneresting
Let’s have a second look at Mr Clegg too
And what of Mr Clegg personally? Well, he has fiercely condemned the influence of lobbyists as part of the “old politics” and called for “reform on lobbying”. But he has been distinctly coy about his own two past spells as a lobbyist, leaving them off his official biography on the Lib Dem website. Most interesting and recent is Mr Clegg’s high-level stint, in the middle of his political career, with GPlus, the influential and controversial Brussels company.
Peter Guilford, GPlus’s founder, explicitly pitches his firm as the place for organisations with “a real problem affecting their reputation”. Its clients have included the Malaysian Palm Oil Council, whose plantations are accused of contributing to tropical deforestation (GPlus argued for a relaxation of EU regulations to allow more palm oil imports), and representatives of the Russian government, whose PR corner it fought during the recent war with Georgia.
This kind of thing is what led Corporate Europe Observatory, the EU transparency pressure group, to make GPlus the runner-up in its “Worst EU Lobbying” awards last year. “They are a very interesting company,” says a spokesman for the pressure group. “We have lots of stories about them.” Last year, too, GPlus was temporarily suspended from the European Commission’s register of lobbyists for refusing to disclose its full client list.
GPlus often practises “revolving-door” recruitment, taking people straight out of the European institutions to lobby their former colleagues, a practice banned in America. One such recruit was Nick Clegg. Immediately after he left the European Parliament – he was a Lib Dem MEP from 1999 to 2004 – he became one of only five partners in GPlus. He did the job for just under a year, until elected to Westminster in May 2005, describing his work as giving businesses “intelligent professional help in engaging with the EU institutions”.
In a press release, the lobbyist said Mr Clegg would “focus on developing GPlus’s service to UK clients”. Among GPlus’s most important UK clients at the time was the Royal Bank of Scotland, then lobbying furiously to water down a string of EU directives regulating the financial services industry.
more to come people