I may as well have missed yet another train last night – when I found myself being kidnapped by Johnny Biltong and a very amusing American writer who lives in Switzerland when he isn’t living here – because it felt like one of those post-hangover surreal days all day with various items of news.
First we had Stephen Hesford MP resigning, according to the BBC website (now corrected), “on a point of principal”. I thought this a rather good bit of post-ironic neo irony on the part of the Beeb, but…. no… it was just a humble typo and no-one at the BBC will have to resign over it. Mr Hesford has decided that he can’t work in a department where the head of the department, Law’s top dog, breaks the very laws she helped bring in. I don’t suppose cutting one’s career short by six months or so is going to be a great sacrifice. Mr Hesford won’t, probably, have to worry about a ministerial career after the next election and may not, indeed, have to worry about even being an MP.
Then we had Nick Cleggover from the Liberal-Democratic People’s Carnival Party who ( reminiscent of David Steele years ago who told conference delegates “Go home and prepare for government),…. declared that he wanted to be prime minister. Well Mr Clegg… we can’t all have what we want. I wanted to be a ship’s captain when I was eight… largely to see a bit of rum, sodomy and the lash…. as Churchill used to put it about the Royal Navy… but I went into law instead and two out of three ain’t bad… and I prefer Port to Rum anyway.
Then I discovered that chief of the mumbo jumbo men (Catholic branch) The Pope is going to walk across The Channel and visit us in Blighty….Some say, when he was in the Hitler Youth all those years ago, that he thought about visiting England then… but I could not possibly confirm the veracity of this or, indeed, comment upon it…. so I won’t. Pope Benedict (Ratzinger) was, in fact, only obeying orders when he was conscripted into the Hitler Youth as membership was required – Wikipedia. This will give the god botherers something to look forward to as Jesus doesn’t appear to have any plans to pop back in the immediate or medium term future.
Then we had Judge Bruce McMillan 63 who threw himself on his sword before he was “dishonourably disrobed by The Lord Chief Justice and The Lord Chancellor” (Oooo er, Matron! as White Rabbit might say) for being nicked, for a second time, by Plod for drink driving. I have no idea whether MacMillan was a good judge – but The Times notes…. He made headlines in January this year when he sentenced a man who was found naked stuck in a supermarket chimney in Wigan for a “singularly inept” attempted burglary.
“Were this matter not so serious the facts would be decidedly comic,” Judge Macmillan said.
And then I read Oedipus_Lex’s amusing post about police stupidity and the erosion of civil rights. Lex gives us a first hand report of his experience at the hands of the guys whose eyes are just that bit too close together when he attended a protest being held at the annual dinner for arms dealers.
If you haven’t had a chance to listen to the podcast with Richard Susskind which I did for The College of Law (It has been shoved down the page a bit) – you may find it by scrolling down or by clicking here. I think you will find it worth listening to – particularly if you are a student going into the profession.
Finally… for barristers...The Bar Council has finally responded to the sweeping changes going on around them with a letter to barristers… … The letter urges all barristers to respond to the BSB’s consultation paper, stating that ‘at the heart of this matter are the likely future changes to the way in which barristers practise…it is of the utmost importance that the Bar now addresses its future and engages in the debate on these fundamental and historic issues’.”
I just love the unintended irony in the last sentence.