Postcard from The Staterooms (2): Unitit Kingdom Pairlament in Lunnon… edition..

First a bit of genius… HT to @Johnthelutheran .. this is wonderful stuff from Dudley Moore: Dudley Moore plays Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No.33, the “Colonel Bogey”.

A couple of new law blogs:  The Bungablog  on The Bribery Act 2010 by barrister James Vine …..and This Much I Know – Alison Graham-Welles, Barrister.

The Bribery Act 2010 is fairly complex.  This blog post from James Vine will give you an insight into the workings of the Act: Official. Government declares Bribery is NOT an Offence!

HT to @loveandgarbage for alerting me to a leaflet in ‘Scots’ to explain to ‘Scots’ speakers how Pairlament warks.  Real money was spent on this marvellous document.  My father… pronounced… ‘faethar’…. (Mother is pronounced… Mither) was frae Glasgae and amused himself when over refreshed by being a ‘Professional Scot’ and speaking ‘Scots’ … largely by making it up as he went along. His grasp of Scots history varied according to the amoont o whiskae he hod drank.  Here is the ‘Garrin the Scottish Pairlament wark for ye’ pdf.  Good stuff. I like ‘Scots’ – I shall have to brush up on it. Here is a video of The Scottish First Minister talking wistfully about ‘Scots’…

And.. if you thought that was a bit weird…. what about a grown man who dresses up as a Ninja and patrols the streets of Yeovil?  This video is worth a look.

But… not to be outdone when it comes to weird shit…. Presidential hopeful, Michell Bachmann, from The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party in the States…. has pronounced that….Hurricane Irene was a punishment from God.

I don’t know how much God has to do to get the attention of the politicians. We’ve had an earthquake; we’ve had a hurricane. He said, ‘Are you going to start listening to me here?’ Listen to the American people because the American people are roaring right now. They know government is on a morbid obesity diet and we’ve got to rein in the spending.

And.. from the same New Statesman article…”Evangelical preacher Pat Robertson, a former Republican presidential candidate, linked Hurricane Katrina to abortion or, in his words, “the wholesale slaughter of unborn children”

But…. we have our own home grown politicians who are more than capable of getting in on a bit of batshit crazy stuff.  Tory MP Nadine Dorries has got in on the action on the abortion debate, attracting the ire of the liberal establishment.  I don’t happen to agree with her views – which is my right and, of course, the right of those who do to follow her – but liberal and never misconceived lawyer David Allen Green did an analysis of the ‘Works of Nadine Dorries MP’ in The News Statesman earlier in the year which is worth reading if you want to see how some of our Tory *Beserkers* are influencing government policy.

In his own words…here is a tweet from @David Allen Green: Here is my November 2010 @NewStatesman expose of Nadine Dorries dishonesty and abuse in using her blog bit.ly/9RWaWF.

I suppose… this being a law blog… that I should get back to a bit of law.  Here we go…

G4S sacks pair who tagged offender’s false leg

BBC: “Private security firm G4S has sacked two members of staff who tagged a man’s false leg allowing him to remove it and break a court-imposed curfew. The pair were fooled by Christopher Lowcock, 29, who wrapped the prosthetic limb in a bandage when G4S set up the system at his Rochdale home. He was then able to remove the limb and break a curfew imposed for offences involving drugs, driving and a weapon.”

Magistrates have responded angrily to prison governors’ accusations they have indulged in a sentencing “feeding frenzy” after the riots in England.

BBC: Prison Governors Association president Eoin McLennan Murray said sentences had appealed to a populist mentality. But Magistrates Association chairman John Thornhill said sentencing had followed guidelines and he was “angry and concerned” by the comments.

Indeed yes…. There are going to be a fair few appeals..and a few ‘quiet words’ and ‘taps on the shoulder’ to those magistrates (in the main, professional, legally qualified, district judges?) who have overdone the sentencing egg?  We shall see.

And finally… and not surprisingly… a wonderful mocking piece from The New York Times on PM Camcorderdirect’s knee-jerking response in the wake of the riots to close down twitter and other social media…. a ludicrous idea which the government appears to have backed away from as I noted in my Postcard the other day.

A couple of quotes to whet your appetite.  The article is worth a read in full.

“…Iran, criticized by the West for restricting the Internet and curbing free speech, seemed to savor the moment and offered in the immediate aftermath of the riots to “send a human rights delegation to Britain to study human rights violations in the country,”

Some of the nations that have been criticized by the West for their own draconian crackdowns on inconvenient freedoms of speech have watched Britain’s recent struggles with barely disguised glee. In China, The Global Times, a government-controlled newspaper, praised Mr. Cameron’s comments, writing that “the open discussion of containment of the Internet in Britain has given rise to a new opportunity for the whole world.”

Good effort.  With a single leap, our hapless prime minister has put Britain into a “League of Rather Unsavoury Nations” when it comes to human rights and is building on the repressive ‘crackdown’ on civil liberties meted out by the last Labour government.

Well.. there we are.  Back to real life tomorrow and back to vaguely sensible commentary on the laws and ways of our sceptred isle.

Best, as always

Charon.

3 thoughts on “Postcard from The Staterooms (2): Unitit Kingdom Pairlament in Lunnon… edition..

  1. Enjoyed Dudley Moore’s performance.

    The most elegant solution to a domestic berserk problem in the sagas was to wear them out by tricking them into fighting each other: then axe. All mouth-foaming, shield-biting and overconsumption of resources dealt with quite neatly. Thank you for yet another apt image.

  2. christopher lowcock (crayzee name crayzee guy) – small round of applause! i wish some of my clients had your gift for improvisation. don’t suppose he’s a reader of this blog but hey… respect is nevertheless due.

  3. if the chair of the magistrates association thinks he was following the guidelines then i reckon he should be prosecuted for possession of something hallucinogenic and class a.

    my continuing polling (which continues to be thoroughly unscientific in both numbers and method) of those working in the mags (both legal advisors and prosecutors) suggests that they believe that treatment of ‘riot-related’ (often only very vaguely related) cases to be way out of line with any existing guidelines. it is also significant, in my opinion, that the recorder of manchester has issued (apparently with other judges in mcr crown courts) some very sane guidelines for the very range of cases we have recently been dealing with.

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