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Tuesday 9 June 2020

Priti Patel Says Look Over There

After the toppling of Edward Colston’s statue, followed by its brief journey across The Centre to be dropped into Bristol’s Floating Harbour, has come the right-wing condemnation. Alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, standing in the draughtiest of glasshouses, described it as “thuggery”. A number of restaurants in the Oxford area may allow themselves a wry smile at his lack of self-awareness.
Bozo The Clown knows all about thuggery, vandalism and more generally smashing things up, so perhaps he was not the best-placed Tory to pass adverse comment. On the other hand, Priti Patel, for some reason put in charge of the Home Office, was a much more appropriate choice. And so, as the Murdoch Times has told, she rebuked the protestors.

Statue thugs must face justice, Patel tells Police … Home Secretary hits out at protest violence” tells the headline, with the supporting article claiming “Priti Patel has told a Police chief that he must uphold the law after his officers failed to stop anti-racism protesters from toppling the statue of a slave trader and throwing it into a harbour”. There was more.
The Home Secretary had a ‘firm’ conversation yesterday with Andy Marsh, the chief constable of Avon and Somerset [Police], and demanded an explanation for what happened in Bristol on Sunday. She made clear that she expected those who pulled the statue down to face criminal prosecution. There have been no arrests so far”.

The Times chucks in a discussion about someone climbing on to the Cenotaph in London, and someone else applying graffiti to the plinth of the Winston Churchill statue in Parliament Square, which is irrelevant to the Bristol event, and to the Police there. Moreover, it is clear that the paper has been briefed by Ms Patel, or on her behalf.
There are two problems with this. One, as The Secret Barrister has once again had to point out, it is not the Home Secretary’s function to decide who to prosecute: “Another day, another story demonstrating that the Home Secretary doesn’t understand the basics of criminal law. It is not for politicians to dictate that individuals ‘face criminal prosecution’. A decision to prosecute is taken independently by the CPS or police”.
The SB went on to note “‘She made clear that she expected those who pulled the statue down to face criminal prosecution.’ This goes beyond seeking an explanation - if correct, she is interfering with the independent prosecutorial process”. And the second problem is that this is a thinly veiled attempt to deflect from Ms Patel’s more serious problems.
Like, as free sheet Metro has pointed out, “THIS IS PRITI POINTLESS … 14-day UK quarantine régime is ‘full of holes’ … ‘It won’t control virus but will harm business’ … ‘SHAMBOLIC’ quarantine rules brought in yesterday by Home Secretary Priti Patel will do little to control Coronavirus but will harm businesses and cost jobs, it has been claimed”.
So what better than to tell everyone to “look over there” at the firm smack of authority being pointed out to these softie law enforcement types. Except Ms Patel is so clueless that she went totally OTT and made herself look even worse than she does already.

And that just about sums up the competence of this Government. Or the lack of it.
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AndyC said...

There is a faint glimmer of hope in the air surrounding Patel. Her failure to unequivocally back Cummings, despite the Cabinet being under the cosh to support the lock-down breaker come what may, could see her dropped from her current role at the Home Office in the re-shuffle rumoured to be coming in the next few weeks. With a history of gross incompetence (to say the least) like her's, how ironic if she gets the boot for the only thing she has ever got right in her miserable, lamentable, damaging, political career.

Anonymous said...

Had I been Andy Marsh I would have told Patel to go fuck her fascist self.

For once, Plod did the proper thing and stood back as a monument to mass murder got dumped.

Steve Woods said...

Did the "statue thugs" use traditional thugee techniques, i.e. strangling it in its sleep and robbing it?

In the immortal words of Private Eye...