Look Uncle Arthur, I'm in the news again!
This, in turn, is being enthusiastically promoted by the right-leaning part of our free and fearless press, so it should surprise no-one that the Murdoch Times has today splashed on “New laws to protect University free speech”. FREEZE PEACH! FREEZE PEACH!! So what is the problem regarding freedom of speech? Did someone take it away?
“Government calls time on student cancel culture in state opening of Parliament”. Ah, the old circular argument ploy. Someone invents something called “cancel culture”, so then something must be done about it. But Phil Baty of Times Higher Education has reminded us “latest OfS figures for the university sector in England show that of 59,574 events organised with an external speaker, 53 were not approved. Yes, that's 0.09% of events”.
Moreover, there is a difference between “free speech” and any right to be given a platform, which no-one has. Universities, or other organisations, that choose not to offer a platform to potential speakers are exercising freedom of choice. Worse, the measures, to be brought forward by Gavin “stupid boy” Williamson, will also include measures for social media companies to “safeguard freedom of expression”. Which will be done how?
“Companies such as Facebook and Twitter must provide ‘routes of appeal’ if their messages are removed”. Two things here. One, Facebook and Twitter already have an appeals process, and Two, they also have Ts and Cs which they are free to enforce.
Smirktastic, legislation fans!
And from one over-promoted minister to another, we have the proposal to require photo ID in order to cast a vote, the handiwork of Priti Patel, inexplicably elevated to Home Secretary. Again, two things here. One, there have been fewer in-person vote fraud cases recently than investigations into Bozo’s potential misconduct. And Two, those without photo ID (like a driving licence or passport) mostly vote Labour.
As Private Eye magazine might have put it, I wonder if the two are somehow related? I think we should be told. Meanwhile, something that really would benefit the hoped-for economic recovery has just been rejected by “Lord” Frost, our Brexit minister. Upcoming tougher border checks could be mostly eliminated by aligning with EU food standards.
This chart (c) FT
However, “Diplomatic sources say that the UK has ruled out the most helpful option of aligning food standards with those of the EU … This could have seen a reduction of about 90% of documentary checks and 98% of physical checks conducted at the border, according to recent select committee evidence”. This will make implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol - a Bozo “solution” - that much more difficult.
Once again, the Tories and their press pals are distracting the public with the pretence that their FREEZE PEACH is under attack (it isn’t) and that there is voter fraud widespread enough to warrant legislation (there isn’t), while potentially hobbling economic recovery.
And when it all fouls up, it will be someone else’s fault. No change there, then.
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