‘Cramlington Village Councillor’…. who he?

Oh, FFS…

Gareth Davies: I had an email from Tim Ireland the other day, suggesting I’ve been slow to publish some comments about torture. I have. No conspiracy Tim, I’ve been busy.

[Um… Gareth? I don’t think there’s a conspiracy; I just think that you’re a dick.]

Take a look at Gareth’s post where he attempts to have the ‘final word’ on torture. Witness how many twists and turns he takes to avoid giving a straight answer to this question; “Do you support detention without trial based on intelligence gained through torture?”

He’s also posted a reply to this post at Bloggerheads that completely fails to address the central point (perhaps he feels he has ‘no need’ to do so) and instead presents the following in his defence:

Tim Ireland: “Gareth Davies… took a ‘moral’ standpoint against the Backing Blair website without declaring that he was employed by the Labour Party in a regional party call-centre.”

Gareth Davies: “Tim keeps saying I worked in one of the Labour Party’s regional call centres. I didn’t. I worked in the communications unit at Labour Party Head Office.”

*sigh*

It was Gareth himself who said that he “worked in call centres for banks and telephone companies and universities” and during the election worked “in a call centre environment for the Party.”

Oh, and the office he worked for was of the regional variety (unless he was based at Labour HQ in London, which would make his position even harder to defend, because that would put him even closer to the core camapign team).

But now for the whopper (if you have a drink in your hand, I advise you to put it down now)…

Gareth Davies: “…it’s hilarious to read one of Blogggerhead’s anonymous ccommenters [sic] demanding that David put his name on the websites he publishes, when Bloggerheads went to town on me as a Labour stooge for suggesting much the same thing about the Backing Blair website.”

Tim Ireland: “There wasn’t a single anonymous comment on Bloggerheads demanding that David Taylor put his name on the websites he publishes… Gareth made it up to support his ‘point’.”

Gareth Davies: “Tim keeps claiming that there wasn’t an anonymous comment on his site demanding David Taylor identify himself on sites he authored. Read this.

[Here Gareth links to one of my comments as evidence and continues…]

Gareth Davies: I’m happy to accept that I’m the only person in the world who doesn’t know that Manic is Tim Ireland. And to withdraw the suggestion that, as such the comment is anonymous. But I didn’t invent it Tim (or is it Manic I’m talking to now?)”

Duh…

Gosh, it’s all so confusing, isn’t it? Not only is it declared in the Page Title on the front page, but every post on the website of Tim Ireland – marked ‘© Tim Ireland’ – is entered under the nickname ‘Manic’… in much the same way that every entry at Gareth Davies’ weblog is entered under the ID ‘Cramlington Village Councillor’.

Similarly, every comment on the website of Tim Ireland that’s made by Tim Ireland is entered under the nickname ‘Manic’… in much the same way that every comment at Gareth Davies’ weblog that’s made by Gareth Davies is entered under the ID ‘Cramlington Village Councillor’.

Having failed to pass off invented evidence, Gareth is now attempting to invent confusion! Well, at least we can hope this is the case…

Normally, a dishonest/witless blogger like Gareth Davies wouldn’t be worth spitting on, but this serves as an excellent example of the self-deception and/or ignorance that’s required to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with a lying, torturing, murdering psychopath like Tony Blair and still fool yourself into thinking that you’re a decent human being.

UPDATE – No. Sorry. I take that back. He is worth spitting on.

Hawwwwk..*ptooie!*








Posted in The Political Weblog Movement, Tony 'King Blair | 2 Comments

Hungary: lies, leaks and whispers

BBC – We lied to win, says Hungary PM: Hungary’s prime minister has admitted saying that his party lied to the public to win April’s general election. Ferenc Gyurcsany’s admission came after Hungarian radio played a tape of a meeting he had with his Socialist MPs a few weeks after the election. On it he says the party had lied to the public and his “boneheaded” government failed to introduce any real policies.

(Psst! Has anyone else noticed that the list of Tony Blair’s achievements on the Keeping the Faith website has been trimmed down?)

Guardian – Hungary PM: we lied to win election: Some observers say the leaked tape could have come from Mr Gyurcsany’s office as a way to justify tough economic reforms. Just hours after the tape came out, a full transcript was posted on his weblog.

(Psst! Specific entry is here. In Hungarian.)

Independent – Budapest rioters storm TV station in ‘lying PM’ protest: Protesters clashed with police and stormed the headquarters of Hungary’s state television early today, enraged at a leaked recording in which the prime minister admitted the government “lied morning, evening and night” about the economy… Confronted with initial excerpts of the 25-minute recording, which Hungarian state radio posted on its website on Sunday, Gyurcsany not only acknowledged their authenticity but seemed relieved they had been made public – leading to speculation that the leak came from sources close to him… Others said the leak was an attempt – which may have misfired – by Gyurcsany’s Socialist rivals to block his aspirations to become party chairman.

(Psst! If Tony Blair ever does this, don’t even think of marching on Downing Street.)








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Darfur: where are the Clooney-bashers?

Whenever George Clooney or any other celebrity has the temerity to speak out about the Middle East, all sorts of wingnuts crawl out from under their rocks to malign, mock and undermine them (here’s a classic example)… but I’m not seeing a lot of these attacks now that George Clooney is speaking out about Darfur. I find this to be odd, given that there are significant business interests to be protected. Perhaps it’s the lack of an apocalyptic objective….








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They what now?

It has just come to my attention that the Conservatives invented blogging… and quite possibly the helicopter. Rachel has more.

UPDATE – Well said:

“Harry’s Place – the blog meeting place for lefties all over Britian”

WTF?

I’m afraid your very creditable 19th place is rather diminished by the fact that Dale doesn’t know what the hell he’s on about.








Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | 1 Comment

Please. Watch. This.

If you really want to understand the dangers of religious extremism, I urge you to watch the following programme (links in the review are mine)…

The Doomsday Code – 7:00pm – Saturday 16 September – Channel 4

Radio Times (David Butcher):

Tony Robinson is more of a deep thinker than you might guess, and here he brings us a rollicking story about a strain of evangelical Christianity that takes the Book of Revelation literally: the so-called “End-Timers”. Put crudely, End-Timers believe that the apocalypse is coming, and they wield considerable (and worrying) political clout in the USA. We see a string of preachers from the American South (all steel-haired white men with booming voices) whose crackpot jumble of beliefs may well appal moderate Christians as much as atheists. Broadly, their agenda is to pour petrol on the flames of Middle Eastern politics, dilute the USA’s will to combat global warming and foster hostility to the UN. It’s an alarming and incendiary package, to say the least. And before you write to complain that I’m biased in some way, spend two hours watching this shrewd, far-reaching film.

In fact, I urge you to tape it so you can have a copy to share with those in need of enlightenment.

UPDATE – A quick related link for you… ABC News – Film Shows Youths Training to Fight for Jesus (alt. video link here)

Oh, and you’re sure to enjoy Creationism Explained… using a soda can and a banana (link via).








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‘Supporting’ the troops

Blair Watch – The Freedom They Died For: Military Families Against the War is planning a peace camp outside the Labour Conference in Manchester. They’ve organised similar events before but this time The Labour council has banned the protest.

BBC – Council accused of censoring demo: About 20 activists were denied permission to pitch tents in Albert Square in front of the Town Hall from 21 September on health and safety grounds. Rose Gentle, from Glasgow, whose 19-year-old son Gordon died in Iraq in 2004 said the council were “doing the government’s bidding”.

Independent – War protesters banned from Labour conference: The city’s Labour-controlled council has denied them permission, on health and safety grounds, to set up a “peace camp” to coincide with the start of the conference on 24 September. Its organiser, Rose Gentle, whose 19-year-old son Gordon was killed in 2004, claimed that councillors wanted to avoid causing Tony Blair embarrassment.

Boy, talk about familiar ground… and then some:

On the afternoon of the 2005 Parliament Square Carol Service (held in defiance of Section 132 of the Serious and Organised Crimes and Police Act 2005), it became clear to Team Blair that they were helpless to stop us without making complete twunts of themselves in front of the media.. so they had some jobsworth from the GLA emailing me at the last minute with some nonsense about keeping off the grass (and ‘kindly’ offering us an alternative venue in Trafalgar Square some 4 hours later… which would have made the protest completely pointless and poorly-attended).

(Psst! Please keep off the grass. Ring any bells?)

But what makes this totally New Labour is the all-too-common tactic of earnestly calling for an open debate on this or that, but not before removing all those who wish to contribute an opposing view:

Bloggerheads December 29, 2005:

You may also wish to note that – in recent statements regarding extraordinary rendition – both Straw and Blair echo Craig Murray’s concerns that using intelligence gained by torture is ‘morally, legally and practically wrong’.

They do this while claiming to be unaware of any actual instance of torture, but they can only continue to do so while Murray remains gagged.

The writing was on the wall during the 2005 General Election when Craig Murray, standing as an independent candidate in Straw’s constituency of Blackburn, was excluded from a public debate. It wasn’t until Murray was forcibly removed from the building that Jack Straw felt confident enough to deliver the following answer to this question:

Constituent: “This question is for Mr Straw; Have you ever read any documents where the intelligence has been procured through torturous means?”

Jack Straw: “Not to the best of my knowledge… let me make this clear… that the British government does not support torture in any circumstances. Full stop. We do not support the obtaining of intelligence by torture, or its use.”

UPDATE – Listen to this exchange, and a following interview, here via Blairwatch.

(PS – I think it’s pretty obvious why Team Blair have chosen a non-networking no-comment yes-man to blog from the conference… independent thought can lead to logical conclusions.)








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Clare Short aims for proportional representation

The Daily – Exclusive: Clare Short to step down amid controversy (Sep 11): In a controversial speech to an academic symposium this afternoon, she said that she wanted to be free to advocate a hung parliament so that the Lib Dems could “do a deal” to ensure PR. She did not specify that the deal would be with Labour, and pointedly noted that “PR is now in the objective interests of the Conservatives”. She expected to see “the Labour Party crumble as the Tories did [in 1997]” but a social democratic party to rise from the ashes.

BBC – Clare Short resignation letter in full (Sep 12)

Independent – Clare Short: I’m standing down so I can speak the truth (Sep 14): The Labour Party has lost its way, our constitutional arrangements are broken and the gap between the political elite and the country grows ever wider… Stay and fight, some argue. But there is no discussion of policy any more. The challenge to Blair and discussions of a new leadership are confined to personalities and all commit to continue the Blair errors. My conclusion is that the key to the change we need is a hung parliament which will bring in electoral reform. Then we would have a second election. Labour – with existing levels of support – would have one-third of the seats in the Commons, the Tories something similar, and we would be likely to see some Greens and others added, creating a plurality of voices and power centres in the Commons. British politics would then change profoundly. Parliament, and in turn the people, would have to be listened to, Cabinet government would return, the error-prone arrogance of Number 10 would end, and we would have a chance of creating a new politics, a more civilised country and a more honourable role in the world.

Independent – Short faces expulsion from Labour Party (Sep 15): The Chief Whip, Jacqui Smith, announced yesterday that she is lodging a complaint with Labour’s national executive, arguing that Ms Short has broken a rule which bars any party member from encouraging electors to vote against a Labour candidate. “We have had calls coming in from MPs all day about this, and people are very angry,” a party source said. “Jacqui has written to Clare twice before about her interesting thoughts that her parliamentary colleagues should be defeated. Previously we tried to arrange a meeting with four or five of the most marginal MPs who wanted to talk to her about it, but she refused.”

Independent – Arrogance and insecurity (Sep 15): In lambasting Ms Short, Ms Smith and the Parliamentary Labour Party are only revealing their own insecurity and guaranteeing greater publicity for her views.

I’ll second that… and add this:

Listen to Teh Boobs!With the subtle use of the phrase “interesting thoughts” – New Labour has yet again shown its uglier side, with the repeated suggestions that those who oppose Blair only do so because they are mentally challenged and/or unbalanced.

The Scum have an even more … erm… interesting viewpoint….

It would appear that everything that Clare Short says can be ignored because she’s not attractive (so it goes without saying that – for informed comment – one should turn to Page 3):

Today Keeley (19, from Kent) is “over the moon” that MP Clare Short is ‘on the way out’ and says; “Page 3 girls and the fans will be glad to see the back of her – mind you, who’d want to see the front of her.”

(For the record, I currently disagree with Clare Short on the subject of boobies in ‘news’ papers and think that Page 3 should stay exactly where it is… on the condition that The Sun takes its rightful place on the top shelf as a result.)

Blair Watch – Clare Short – Too Little and Too Late: I’ve said it before but Labour Party members remind me of battered wives, clinging on to a distant past, swearing that they can change things and making excuses for the abuse.

I’d also agree with that. All of the True Believers who can’t resist a dig at Clare Short’s Iraq two-step will one day have to do a two-step of their own when they are forced to protect their seat by declaring to the world that they had been lied to. Why, if only they had been told the truth…

Why, if only they had been paying attention, more like.

These same people even have the audacity to proclaim that Clare Short doesn’t stand for ‘Labour values’.

Do torture and murder count as Labour values? I don’t think so…. that’s why I spend so much time going for Blair’s throat.

But the blame can’t be put entirely upon Blair; there’s also the corrupting influence of power to deal with… one very good reason to begin a serious debate about proportional representation.








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Only a vote for the Republicans can save you from the terrorists

BSSC – A War on the “War”: It was widely expected that President Bush would not use the anniversary of September 11th to make a controversial or politically motivated partisan statement but last night that is exactly what he did. The willingness of the Bush administration to manipulate the deaths of 3,000 people for their own purposes apparently knows no bounds. It really is a sickening spectacle.

Agreed.

We’ll want to watch the mid-terms very carefully… if the Democrats look like making significant gains, Bush could very well choose to undermine our security in order to gain a few votes for the Republicans (if he hasn’t done so already).

Also, Bush and Blair are equally guilty of repeated claims that they must stand firm in Iraq to protect the Iraqis from the threat of terrorism… that they themselves brought to that country!

Bush is the worst offender on this front; in one breath he will repeat the lie that Iraq was invaded to protect the Iraqi people and in the next he will proudly proclaim that Iraq has become the central front of the ‘war’ on terror (thus keeping it away from U.S. shores).

So what’s it to be, George? Did you seek to save the Iraqis or did you seek to put them in harm’s way in order to keep Al Qaeda out of the shopping malls of America?

UPDATE – Well said, that man! (transcript)








Posted in George W. Bush | 1 Comment

Sexy Ami calls for unity

Boobs! Unity! Boobs!What better way to achieve unity than to launch an attack?

Ignore the almost uniquely positive view of Blair’s performance at the TUC conference (and Blair – again – attempting to claim the moral high ground by climbing to the top of the mountain of bodies he has created).

Instead, simply note how closely Blair’s stance matches that of the editorial, and the ‘opinion’ of the girl who appears on Page 3 with her jugs out.

Also note the poisonous attacks against ‘lefties’ who – we are assured – are wholly responsible for repeated attempts to undermine the Labour Party and will no doubt hand power back to the Conservatives if allowed to continue their rampage unchecked.

Tony Blair:

“You are entitled to do this. But you must realise those who are hostile to a Labour government and everything we want to achieve, you are doing precisely what they want. Not very sensible.”

Tony Blair:

“And now we have had three terms of Labour government for the first time ever in 100 years of trying. And every year I’ve come to the TUC as prime minister. But remember the 18 years before, when you never had sight nor sound of a prime minister. For 18 years, you were addressed by the leader of the opposition. The problem with that title is that it’s true to what it says on the tin: the leader opposes. The leader doesn’t do, because he has no power to do anything. However difficult it is, however fraught our relations from time to time, make no mistake: I want the TUC to carry on being addressed by a Labour PM, not go back to being addressed by the leader of the opposition.”

Rebekah Wade:

“What an irrelevance unions have become. The orchestrated walkout by placard-waving hardliners as Tony Blair spoke to the TUC was petulant and stupid. As well as downright disrespectful to the man who, no thanks to them, got their once unelectable party into power after 18 years in opposition. These deluded dinosaurs think that by childishly hollering “troops out” at the PM they speak for us all. They should remember this: Blair was re-elected by the British people just 16 months ago, despite all the flak he was taking over Iraq. If it wasn’t for him the TUC would play host each year to the leader of a permanent opposition. How conveniently these fools forget the enormous changes Blair brought about for their members – and which the TUC should unreservedly applaud: economic stability, more people in work and a minimum wage. Instead Bob Crow thinks it is somehow within his remit to accuse Blair of killing thousands of British servicemen. Meanwhile the TGWU’s Tony Woodley naively expects the Prime Minister to publicly apologise to the TUC for the Iraq war. What planet are they on? OK, so they opposed the Iraq invasion. But surely they and their members should now welcome the new democracies – and union rights – in place there and in Afghanistan. Gordon Brown did well to stand firmly behind his boss and publicly condemn the protests. That’s the kind of outspokenness The Sun demanded of him if he’s to look like a PM-in-waiting. We look forward to more of it at the party conference this month. Blair rightly pointed out with some anger that the turmoil union hardliners seem set on causing within Labour plays into Tory hands. But you wonder if they don’t feel more at home yelling slogans from the opposition trenches anyway. The Bob Crows of this world won’t be happy until Labour is back in the hands of the 1970s-style Lefties voters no longer tolerate. Many Sun readers are in unions. They want and deserve a modern, progressive movement which is in touch with 2006, not this backwards-looking rabble. What a breath of fresh air that would be. How delighted Blair must now be to have given his last TUC speech. Yesterday’s troublemakers were in a minority. But the rest were too timid to send him off with anything but a 23-second ripple of applause. It was a disgracefully lacklustre farewell for a Labour Prime Minister of nearly ten years’ standing. Union membership is collapsing, and no wonder. In another few years they’ll struggle to fill a conference hall.”

Sexy Ami (who was sad to see Tony Blair booed at yesterday’s TUC conference):

“Delegates were daft to jeer and walk out when Blair was speaking. I’m just glad that Gordon Brown backed Blair on this occasion”

On this occasion. Aren’t you glad we live in times when glamour models can have their words so carefully chosen for them?

UPDATE (14 Sep) – OK, folks… it’s all over. Move along… nothing to see here!

Zoe (24, from London) is relieved that Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have finally ended their rift. She says: “Hopefully they can get on with running the country and end all the bad blood. I think the whole bust-up didn’t do them – or Labour – any favours.”

Zoe speaks the truth!








Posted in Page 3 - News in Briefs, Tony 'King Blair | 5 Comments

Dipsticks on parade

Remember to never ever stand up for what you believe in, kids. The costs are too great! The blows are too crippling!

(cough)

Dennis Paul

Just under a month after ‘quitting’ his weblog, Dennis Paul has deleted the entry about his decision to quit and brought his weblog back to life (but not before deleting the link to it from his main website). He began quietly enough by doing his bit for local law enforcement officers before swiftly returning to form with this post where – under a number of hilarious pseudonyms, he carries on yet another lively conversation with himself that includes this subtle jibe: Pinnochio said… Wow! If I drink in the bar at 16, do I become a real boy? Or maybe even a man, like Chris!!

I don’t see what this can be other than an ‘innocent’ reference to the smears about Chris Ward published by Mike Chambers and propagated with the help of Dennis Paul.

He then follows with an entry that’s clearly designed to get up my nose. My ire isn’t raised, but my curiosity is… as this flurry of activity just happens to coincide with:

1. A renewed attempt to ‘bring balance’ to Anne Milton’s Wikipedia entry, the highlight of which is this edit.

2. Renewed publication of comments at the weblog that smears Chris Ward, including yet another attempt to pass off a comment about it being OK to have sex with kids as one of mine.

Charming… to the last.

Gareth Davies

What is it with this guy? Is he totally unable to conduct a straight debate? I’m going to pester you to take a fresh look at this:

“I have no need to defend David’s online activities. I don’t intend to. But Bloggerheads don’t seem to comprehend that if activists talk to each other, or get involved in activities they might regret, it’s not evidence of a conspiracy. It’s evidence of a passion for politics, for the business of ensuring that the party that represents your views wins. Sometimes supporters go too far. I think David has in this case. But it’s hilarious to read one of Blogggerhead’s anonymous ccommenters demanding that David put his name on the websites he publishes, when Bloggerheads went to town on me as a Labour stooge for suggesting much the same thing about the Backing Blair website.”

There wasn’t a single anonymous comment on Bloggerheads demanding that David Taylor put his name on the websites he publishes… Gareth made it up to support his ‘point’.

He’s also made a misleading suggestion about my being ‘anonymous’… something he does with baffling regularity (his most recent effort; referring to me here as “the anonymous Manic of Bloggerheads”).

The Backing Blair site was launched publicly, here at Bloggerheads and prominent links to myself (and others responsible for Backing Blair) appeared on every main page of the site.

While Gareth Davies, on the other hand, took a ‘moral’ standpoint against the Backing Blair website without declaring that he was employed by the Labour Party in a regional party call-centre.

I initially gave Gareth a few days to realise what he had linked to, but now I think he’s known all along and doesn’t care. During his purely moral objection to Backing Blair, he said this:

“The odd mix of ultra lefties, half baked trots and dilettantes behind the BackingBlair campaign seem to have got their underwear in an uproar over the faintest of suggestions that people who campaign for a particular electoral outcome on the Internet should be forced to play by the same rules as political parties. It’s not about censorship, or totalitarianism. It’s about having open accountable elections. That means knowing who’s placing adverts and running campaigns, and who’s paying for them. All I ask is that if a site wants to campaign for a particular vote at an election, or against a political vote,it should have a declaration of who publishes it, on whose behalf, who pays the bills, and that it should be a criminal offence to make false statements about who the publisher is, and about the source of the money to pay the bills. Now, that’s not complicated is it?

Well, yes, it *can* get complicated sometimes… especially when councillors who don’t declare their formal role with the Labour Party campaign team continually make false allegations about independent campaigners in an effort to undermine them.








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