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Monday 24 February 2020

Toby Young’s Free Speech Sham

The time has arrived for the latest project from the loathsome Toby Young, along with a group of carefully selected colleagues: the Free Speech Union has now been launched. This will support the freedom of those supported to speak freely, a concept which is clearly fraudulent. Neither Tobes, nor his pals, can enhance anyone’s freedom of speech merely by championing them. They are already free to speak. No intervention is needed.
An unappealing trio: the loathsome Tobes ...

Still, the Mail on Sunday felt the need to give Tobes some publicity. “People who become the target of ‘Twitter storms’ after making controversial remarks will be defended by a new body called the Free Speech Union. The organisation will ‘stand up for the rights of its members to tell the truth in all circumstances’. The union has been set up by the journalist Toby Young in response to police investigations into a string of ‘non-crime hate incidents’ triggered by outspoken comments”. No-one is stopping anyone telling the truth.
... Doug Murray The K ...

There was a comment from The Great Man himself. "If someone at work writes to your boss to complain about something you’ve said, we’ll write to them, too, and explain the importance of intellectual tolerance and viewpoint diversity. If self-righteous social-media bullies pick on you, we’ll return the fire. If someone launches an online petition calling for you to be sacked, we’ll launch a counter-petition. The enemies of free speech hunt in packs; its defenders must band together too.” Tedious Maximus speaks.
... and Nigel Biggar

So this is an excuse for Tobes to wade in to disagreements at his own particular discretion. But one look at this organisation reveals what it is really about: for starters, as Ian Fraser points out, it “isn't in fact a union. It's a limited company, incorporated on 20 Nov 2019. The firm has five directors - Toby Young, Douglas Murray, Prof Nigel Biggar, Ian Rons, and Radomir Tylecote”. Who they? Ah well. That gets to the heart of the matter.
As Fraser notes, “Toby Young has tweeted on breasts, eugenics & the working class … Nigel Biggar is a longtime apologist of colonialism … Douglas Murray is a noted Islamophobe … Radomir Tylecote was suspended from HM Treasury after co-authoring an anti EU book”. They all spoke freely. And as a result, other spoke freely against them.
Tobes’ social media past caught up with him after he was gifted a board position at the Office for Students. No-one curtailed his right to speak freely. Nigel Biggar attracted adverse comment for his views on British colonialism; he was backed to the hilt by the Daily Mail, for what good it did him. Tobes’ outfit won’t do any better.
And Doug Murray The K has been regularly called out for his anti-Muslim bigotry. At no time was his ability to speak freely curtailed. Free speech campaigners? More likely is that they’re all sore losers who have banded together in order to try and get their own back on the Rotten Lefties™. Because we know whose free speech they won’t be defending.
As Paul Bernal has pointed out, “As Toby Young should know, your commitment to free speech isn’t shown by how well you defend those whose speech you agree with, but how you defend those whose speech you don’t. When his ‘free speech union’ talks about the excesses of the Prevent programme, then see”. This is just free speech for the right.

It’s another way for Tobes and Co to whine about how unfair the world is. Aw bless!
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Anonymous said...

So...yet another far right propaganda unit.

At this rate they'll be tripping over each other's rabid spit.

Andy McDonald said...

Plus, missing the point that in many cases your speech does have limits. If I tweet something via my work account I'm representing my employer and can quite rightly be hauled up for it.

Ferdy Fox said...

The truth and Toby Young in the same sentence - well I never.
He'll be asking us to believe that the government is actually a government next.

Anonymous said...

"It’s another way for Tobes and Co to whine about how unfair the world is. Aw bless!"

And starting at £24.95/year for membership, make a few bob too.

rob said...

Just as well Tobes is not one of those Muslim clerics of whose "free speech" is not welcome by the xenophobes at the Home Office.

Anyone can see "hate speech" when it comes from those who hold views you disagree with but look the other way when it comes from those who hold political positions you mostly agree with.

There are a lot of vile views expressed on social media but there is also a lot in the MSM as well. But it's Ok for the MSM because they are "the media establishment" with supposedly "journalists" who follow a code of practice? Don't larf!

grim northerner said...

This particular apple rolled a looooong way from the tree, and came to rest in far right toxic sludge.

Burlington Bertie from Bow said...

Hang on, how can a free speech union cost 25 quid? That's a 25 quid speech union surely. About as free as that free schools wheeze which cost taxpayers a bomb.

Anonymous said...

If self-righteous social-media bullies pick on you, we’ll return the fire. ...via a highly paid column in the right-wing press.

I very much doubt they'll turn up for employment tribunal unless it's for one of their mates.