While I thoroughly enjoy doing my usual (often) daily Law Review (and I am soon to return to serious podcasts after a brief break) – one of the joys of having a blog with no real ‘agenda’, no deadlines and readers who seem to enjoy popping in as the mood suits them – is being able to just write about whatever has taken my interest or mood.
We will soon get a chance to vote – or abstain, forget to vote or be a militant non-voter – and it is a pity I don’t live in Cambridge. Old Holborn has decided to stand for Parliament as Guy Fawkes. I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Old Holborn, but I have followed his blog, which I enjoy, and I have admired some recent rants and campaigns – most recently, with Anna Raccoon and others to free Nick Hogan on the Smoking issue. I’ll let Anna raccoon take up the story. She is to be his parliamentary agent and has boned up on the complex issues of Election Law.
“He is not interested in promoting his real life personae, in raising his profile as a person to be appointed to boards or committees, he prefers to remain anonymous.
He is not interested in belonging to a powerful group or tribe, or toeing the party line. He prefers to be independent.
While I do enjoy the black and white vision of the zealous hyperventilating Labour and Tory tweeters and bloggers and their sometimes very amusing banter – the truth of the matter is that there are interesting ideas on all sides of the political spectrum and, fortunately, once the banter has been done, there is much to think about in their views and analysis.
Iain Dale came in for a lot of criticism recently (largely from the left, unfortunately) for interviewing Nick Griffin, BNP leader, for Total Politics.
I was more than happy to support Dale’s stance that interviewing Griffin is the right thing to do so that we may judge Griffin on the basis of his words and actions, not myth and tabloid hysteria. I read Iain Dale’s interview with Griffin. It is a good interview, polite but direct with some excellent touches of satire which may well have gone over Griffin’s head. For a Cambridge law graduate, Griffin is not the clearest thinker or communicator or, frankly – given his responses, the brightest knife in the box. I got the feeling, reading Griffin’s responses, that he would have been a rather dull person to teach in law tutorials – I don’t get the feeling that he has an interest in law or the rule of law! I prefer my speech free and Iain Dale has held to a much valued tradition of free speech by doing the interview. Credit where credit is due is also part of politics and life – even if we may not always be prepared to give it in public in the weeks before an election!
G20 police officer hit woman ‘because she was threat’
You may remember Sgt Delroy Smellie. He stands 6ft 4″ in his bare feet, but dressed as Robocop in full body armour and wielding a police baton which he used on a young woman, he was very much a commanding presence. Unfortunately, Sgt Smellie may well have succumbed to the old Actonian aphorism on power because he seemed to think he was justified in hitting a woman because (a) he mistook a carton of orange juice she was carrying for a ‘weapon’ and (b) she did not ‘obey orders’. Telegraph
The trial continues and, rightly, we’ll have to see what the jury makes of Sgt Smellie’s conduct and defence. [Oops...I got wrong on jury - see Simon Bradshaw's comment below which I have left!]