Tag Archives: Paul

Tory councillor coughs up after Corbyn wreath libel

The last laugh: Jeremy Corbyn has won “substantial” damages from the Tory who tweeted a derogatory image about him. He is donating the money to charity.

I don’t think I have to say too much about this. Everybody else already has!

Including – at highly-satisfying length – the culprit:

Here’s Jeremy Corbyn’s side of it.

Others have already noted – and I’d like to add my voice to theirs – that Mr Corbyn only sued because Nickerson’s tweet disrespected those who were affected by the Liverpool Women’s Hospital bomb and the threat it posed to possible victims including new mothers and their babies.

The following tweet also matches my own feelings:

Nickerson himself has asked for his message to be retweeted, so please do.

Let’s remember that fellow Tory Ben Bradley’s apology to Mr Corbyn became one of the most retweeted tweets ever (if I recall correctly). Here it is now:

And while it is too late for Mr Corbyn to take action over the matter mentioned below, and I doubt that he would have anyway because it seems clear that he’s not bothered about the names people call him, in the light of the subject’s lawsuit against me I can’t help but sympathise with the sentiment:

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Tory government bid to put their man in charge of Ofcom fails

Paul Dacre: the government destroyed any pretence of impartiality to shoehorn him into Ofcom, but he has given up on it anyway.

Oh dear. How sad (for the Tories). Never mind!

Here’s the story:

The article makes it clear that the Tory government had tried to rig the appointment system after Dacre was rejected first time around:

After failing in his first attempt when an interview panel decided the former editor of the Daily Mail did not fulfil the required criteria, ministers then cleared the way for him to be given another shot.

The panel had deemed him “not appointable”. Now let’s find out how he described his rejection:

He said he had been judged inappropriate to head Ofcom the first time because his “strong convictions” were not compatible with the role.

That would be true enough – Ofcom needs to be impartial so any bias should indeed rule any candidate out of taking the chair.

Dacre – formerly the editor of the Daily Mail – couldn’t resist taking a swipe at the civil service as he announced his withdrawal in The Times:

Dacre described the process of civil service recruitment as an “infelicitous dalliance with the blob”, and suggested it was Whitehall workers rather than politicians “who really run this country”.

No, it’s definitely Tory politicians who have corrupted public life. Ofcom is a prime example; they corrupted the selection process in Dacre’s favour – but you notice he didn’t have anything to say about that!

“The civil service will control (and leak) everything; the process could take a year in which your life will be put on hold; and if you are possessed of an independent mind and are unassociated with the liberal/left, you will have more chance of winning the lottery than getting the job.”

In a final attack on the civil service, Dacre said he was taking up “an exciting new job” in the private sector that “struggles to create the wealth to pay for all those senior civil servants working from home so they can spend more time exercising on their Peloton bikes and polishing their political correctness”.

And good riddance to him. It will be interesting to find out who ends up employing him, and to look up their tax details to ensure they aren’t operating from a tax haven and cheating the Treasury.

The government will now face the task of cleaning up the appointment process that it shamelessly compromised in its bid to shoehorn Dacre in. According to The Guardian,

Concerns were raised about the transparency of the recruitment process.

When the Guardian revealed a lobbyist at a company with close connections to the Conservative party was picked to help select which candidates should be approved, Dacre announced he would not proceed with an application again despite being urged to “by many senior members of the government”.

The government had spent more than a year trying to ease Dacre’s application for the job. After he failed the first interview process the government spent the summer trying to find people willing to sit on a fresh interview panel for the job, with many individuals reluctant to put their name to the process. The job description was also rewritten to favour a more confrontational candidate, in another move seen as favouring Dacre.

The government now has just 10 days to find another preferred candidate, with applications due by 29 November.

Do any of you fancy it?

Strangely, the Guardian article doesn’t provide a link to an online application form, and all the gov.uk web pages concerning Ofcom chairmanship applications are out of date.

It’s as if they only want to take applications from the people they choose, don’t you think?

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Corbyn to take legal action over faked photo. Will Tory councillor who posted it need a second job afterwards?

Jeremy Corbyn: he wasn’t amused.

Yes, the headline shamelessly mashes two current political news stories – and justifiably.

Last weekend, the Twitter account of a Conservative councillor from Yorkshire, Paul Nickerson, tweeted a faked photograph of Jeremy Corbyn laying a wreath next to the taxi that exploded outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital that day, with the comment: “Unsurprisingly”

No, I’m not going to post it again. If you really want to see it, read This Site’s previous story, here.

Nickerson himself has apologised for the tweet, which he claimed was a prank by others using his account, and the tweet has been deleted.

Whoever put it up, it is possible that they thought Mr Corbyn would take it on the chin. After all, he never took court action over all those anti-Semitism/terrorism support allegations, so he wasn’t likely to do anything about this, right?

Wrong.

According to the Islington Gazette,

In a short statement, Mr Corbyn said: “My solicitor has been notified and we are taking legal action.”

This takes me to the reference to second jobs – the hot topic among MPs, many of whom reckon they simply can’t survive on their salary of £82,000 (three times the national average) plus the most generous expenses scheme anybody can think of.

Nickerson isn’t a member of Parliament and, as far as I know, may not have a second job to supplement whatever allowance he receives as a Yorkshire councillor.

But, as I suggest in the headline, he may certainly wish he had one, if Mr Corbyn wins his case.

One does have to question whether anybody will employ him, though. Even his local Conservative group has suspended his membership.

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Tory councillor’s pot-shot at Corbyn is false, inappropriate and tone-deaf

At a time when Tory corruption – their insistence on following their own interests rather than those of the nation – is under the spotlight, this Conservative councillor’s attempt at diversion is in particularly poor taste.

After taxi driver David Perry averted a tragedy at Liverpool Women’s Hospital by foiling a terrorist bomb plot, Cllr Paul Nickerson tried to use it to make a bad joke about former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

He posted a Photoshopped image of Mr Corbyn laying a Remembrance wreath by the burning taxi – presumably for the terrorist.

It was a callback to the days when Mr Corbyn, as Labour leader, had been falsely accused of sympathising with terrorists. There was absolutely no truth in these smears; the former Labour leader is a pacifist.

There is truth in claims that Conservatives are corrupt.

Only yesterday – the same day Cllr Nickerson was posting his grotty attempt at ridicule, his Parliamentary colleagues were learning about the corruption practised by now-former MP Owen Paterson.

Approval of the standards commissioner’s recommendations with regard to this misbehaviour was only prevented by the intervention of filibuster king Christopher Chope.

Some might describe this as a further act of corruption.

Is Cllr Nickerson proud of MPs like these? Or was he so ashamed he tried to take some of the heat away from them? I ask merely for information.

UPDATE: Cllr Nickerson has subsequently apologised for the image. But something doesn’t ring true…

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Join the campaign to keep Tory choice Paul Dacre from running ‘independent’ Ofcom

Paul Dacre: if he’s the Tory choice, then he certainly shouldn’t get the job.

The Conservatives are trying to rig the selection of a new chairman for communications regulator Ofcom.

They want to install former Daily Mail editor Paul Dacre, even though he has already been through the selection process and was rejected.

The interview panel deemed him “not appointable” a few months ago – so the Tories have taken time out to appoint a new panel member: Michael Simmonds, a former Conservative Party advisor who is married to Conservative MP Nick Gibb (and therefore brother-in-law to BBC board member Sir Robbie Gibb, himself a former Downing Street comms chief under Theresa May).

In fact, the interview panel’s connections with the Conservatives are multiple (and therefore extremely suspicious). See the Guardian article (link below) for further details.

They have also rewritten the job description.

The intention seems clear – as the Good Law Project states in its article (link below): “When Boris Johnson doesn’t like the outcome of an official process, he tries to rip up the rules and start again.

“Ministers… are now shamelessly pushing to appoint Mr Dacre by adjusting the requirements of the role and re-running the recruitment process with a different interview panel.”

Lawyers acting for the Good Law Project have written to the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, who has the ultimate say over the appointment, stating that this “second competition raises very serious concerns, in particular as to whether it has been held, and designed, in order to favour Mr Dacre’s candidacy”. And they have a point.

Ofcom should be independent of both the Government and the services it regulates. The appointment process must follow the rules of the Governance Code for Public Appointments: whoever is hired should be selected on merit, through an open and fair process.

The Governance Code for Public Appointments does allow for Ministers to appoint someone who is not deemed “appointable” by the Assessment Panel. But there are safeguards built into the Governance Code: they must first consult the Commissioner for Public Appointments, and they are required to explain their reasons and justify their decision publicly.

“The reason why Ofcom must remain independent of Government is the same reason the media must remain independent of Government: neither can do their job if they are in the Government’s pocket,” states the GLP in its article.

“We’re asking the Secretary of State to explain why the competition for Chair is being rerun and why Mr Dacre is being allowed to reapply.”

Unfortunately, the Culture Secretary is Nadine Dorries.

The GLP says it wants proper answers but is hardly likely to get any from her.

It is threatening court action if it doesn’t get them.

You can help… try… to change Dorries’s mind – by signing a petition calling on Dorries not to appoint Dacre.

Also the video is worth watching.

In honesty, this will probably end up in court. The Tories want to dismantle the BBC – despite having stuffed it with their own people – and they know Dacre will help them do it.

But this would be blatant government interference in an organisation that should be independent.

And it needs to be fought.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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Tough on speeding, but not on the Tories who speed: hypocrite MP gets light sentence

Serial offender: Paul Bristow.

It really is one rule for us and a completely different one for them, isn’t it?

Peterborough Tory MP Paul Bristow is a triple-offender when it comes to speeding in his car – even though he has campaigned for tougher measures against drivers who break speed limits.

But despite this aggravating factor, when he appeared before magistrates for his latest offence, in which he was caught driving at 76mph in a 50mph zone, he was disqualified for only half the maximum amount of time.

So his total sentence was a 28-day disqualification, a ‘Band C’ fine of £667, a victim surcharge of £68 (10 per cent of the fine value, that goes into a pooled fund for victims of crime) and court costs of £110.

He already had six points on his licence for the two previous offences. More would have put him very close to a permanent disqualification.

Put it all together and it really is worth questioning why he got off so lightly.

What sentence would an ordinary member of the public have faced in exactly the same circumstances?

Peterborough MP Paul Bristow was caught out three times in two years, despite campaigning for tougher speeding restrictions

Source: Tory who backed speeding crackdown gets driving ban after doing 76 in a 50 zone – Mirror Online

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Mythbusting: nurse(?) makes mistake over ‘Do Not Resuscitate’

Ventilator: people with long-term illnesses, disabilities and learning disabilities are still being denied resuscitation by the NHS – and one nurse, at least, has denied the existence of this scandal.

I can’t let this pass.

At Prime Minister’s Questions on June 16, Peterborough’s Tory MP Paul Bristow asked an important question about “Do Not Resuscitate” (DNR) orders that have been made on NHS patients during the Covid-19 crisis.

Having reported on this scandal many times on This Site, I tweeted in response:

I was surprised and saddened when this provoked the following response from a Twitter user who identifies as a nurse (I won’t reproduce the tweet here because I do not wish to identify that person):

“Are you a healthcare professional?

“No.

“Then do not spread false theories about something you obviously know nothing about.”

I attempted to put my critic straight – as politely as possible, in the circumstances:

“I am a news reporter of nearly 30 years experience and have been covering this story from the start. I DO know the facts here. And I see that, since you provide no information to support your insult, you probably don’t. Go well.”

Sadly, this person would not take the (rather overt) hint and came back at me:

You have confirmed it.

It is a story.

I do not have the time, inclination or room on twitter to “provide you with information” only to say that I have 30 years experience as a nurse and have a postgraduate qualification in Professional Practice

Then this is a person who ought to have known better. The claim, “It is a story,” was an attempt to downplay the DNR deaths as fiction, and I wasn’t having that. Also the refusal to support a claim with factual information is a classic tactic by trolls who don’t have any facts to offer.

So I responded (again):

“And how does that better qualify you to comment on this? I’ve done the research so I know my facts. It isn’t fiction.”

And again this person came back at me:

Ok then would you attempt CPR on a five stone frail old woman? Am not going to carry on with this because I’m afraid you just don’t know what you’re on about

This is misleading, and a lie. Allow me to explain.

Mr Bristow’s question is available  to read in Hansard, here. He said: “Last year, doctors and care settings issued an unprecedented number of “do not resuscitate” orders to patients with learning disabilities and mental illness. Many were unlawful and caused avoidable deaths.

“Despite urgent Care Quality Commission and NHS guidance, shockingly, this practice has continued. Last week, The Telegraph reported that Sonia Deleon died unresuscitated. Her family said she was given a DNR without them knowing, and with her learning disabilities and schizophrenia stated as reasons.

“Does the Prime Minister share my alarm about these cases, which should have no place in our care, and does he agree that they should be independently investigated?”

I won’t bother to repeat Boris Johnson’s response as he made no undertaking to prevent further abuses of DNR orders.

It was clear that the issue here was not the safety of attempting cardio-pulmonary resuscitation on a person who may suffer as much harm in that attempt as by the condition that had caused them to need reviving.

It was a political choice to deny health care to people dying with Covid-19, because they have learning (or other) disabilities. It seems to have been considered an opportunity to clear many thousands of so-called “useless eaters” from the UK’s benefit books.

Sonia Deleon’s story is a classic example; you can read about it here.

In brief, almost a year after it was revealed that a policy was in place to deny NHS Covid-19 care to people with long-term illnesses and disabilities – and NHS bosses then claimed to have warned hospitals, GPs and NHS managers not to make such orders on these people, Sonia Deleon was deliberately allowed to die because a DNR order on her had been made.

Hospital authorities claimed that it the order had been agreed with Ms Deleon’s family but they deny this strenuously.

Ms Deleon had learning disabilities and the circumstances of her death are not only a scandal in themselves but are a continuation of a national disgrace.

And I was criticised for highlighting this atrocity – by someone claiming to be a nurse.

I won’t take this matter further by seeking to identify the NHS trust for which this person works and requesting that they be reminded of the facts and properly disciplined for trying to mislead the public. I may change my mind if any further attempts at deception result from this article.

But I will take the opportunity to request that anybody who has relatives living with a long-term illness or disability, or a learning disability, should contact the NHS and ensure that orders equivalent to death sentences have not been applied to their loved ones without their knowledge.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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Revolutionary political campaigner is resurrected for modern times

This Writer is a big fan of comic books – or graphic novels, if you prefer. They have an immediacy that mere words on paper (or screen) sometimes fails to evoke.

When it comes to political ideology, I’m surprised that comics haven’t been employed to get the points across more often before now.

So I think writer/artist Paul Fitzgerald’s bid for funding to support Tom Paine’s Bones – his graphic retelling of the story of the radical human rights and political reform advocate whose work inspired the American Revolution and the formation of a democratic United States – is well worth supporting.

Here’s a quick description of the man and his career:

Through his strong and vocal stances on human rights and political reform he became a key figure in the American Revolution. His pamphlet Common Sense, which advocated for independence and an egalitarian government for the Thirteen Colonies, became the most widely read pamphlet during the American Revolutionary War (1775 – 1783).

His work reached an international audience and Paine’s The Rights of Man, which defended the French Revolution, so infuriated locals in Didsbury and Deangate, in 1793 that they carried out mock trials and executions, burning effigies of Paine in the process.

Even after his death in 1809, Thomas Paine continued to be a thorn in the side of those in power. His bones were unearthed from his grave in America by the radical William Cobbett and carried to the outskirts of Manchester and Salford, just after the Peterloo massacre had occurred in 1819. Fearing the presence of Paine’s remains would foment rebellion amongst a populace still raw from the massacre, troops prevented Cobbett from entering with the bones.

That’s an influential man; his power extended beyond the grave.

Paul Fitzgerald, an artist from Hulme in Manchester also known as Polyp, has been busily working to take Tom Paine out of stuffy lectures on politics and philosophy and onto the illustrated novel page. You can see an example of his excellent work above.

He has launched a Kickstarter campaign for £15,000 to get the project published and I would urge you to help out if you can. Just click on the link and make your donation.

Hopefully this could become part of a series exploring the origins of modern political thinking.

Source: Breathing life back into Tom Paine’s bones – graphic novel aims to resurrect neglected political reformer – The Meteor

If Johnson makes Dacre chair of Ofcom he’ll be betraying the BBC – and the facts

As editor of the Daily Heil, Paul Dacre spent decades misleading the general public with an increasingly right-wing slant on the news, for a sadly increasing proportion of the public with increasingly stiff right arms.

That’s This Writer’s opinion. If Boris Johnson appoints him to chair Ofcom, the communications watchdog organisation, then he will have an opportunity to impose his bias across all of the UK’s media organisations.

I know. Ofcom is supposed to be impartial. But that’s in a properly-run United Kingdom and ours is being run by Boris Johnson. A majority of people wanted it and the rest of us have to just get used to it while we wait for the chance to get rid of it.

According to The Guardian, his first task – handed down by Johnson – will be to target the BBC, despite the fact that Auntie has bent over backwards for him and the Conservative Party since it slithered back into public office in 2010.

It will be a betrayal of the public service broadcaster. But what did anybody at the BBC – even its new Tory-donating chairman – expect? A news organisation with even the briefest brief to actually inform the public impartially is anathema to a political party that survives on propaganda and outright lies.

Remember: seven-eighths of the Conservatives’ election campaign in 2019 was found to be lies.

There is a lot wrong with the BBC, it’s true – but that is mostly caused by the overt Tory influence exerted at its highest levels. Impose impartiality and these problems may disappear.

But that will never happen under a Conservative administration.

Instead, your BBC is likely to be dismantled; your licence fee divided between Tory-donating businesspeople.

That is what appointed Dacre to chair Ofcom means. To me.

And I don’t think I’m alone:

There is only one way to stop this – and all the other elements that mark out Boris Johnsons wholesale corruption of public life.

He hates adverse publicity.

If you think this should be stopped, then get on the social media and say so. Write to your local (and national) newspapers and say so.

You could even try to get yourself on Points of View, Any Answers or Question Time – Richard Sharp (he’s the Tory-donating BBC chair I mentioned above) will hate you for doing it but you have every right to!

Or you could just sit back and sink into lockdown-derived depression. It’s up to you but personally I’d rather try to do something than be blamed for apathy by the future.

Source: Johnson poised to appoint Paul Dacre chair of Ofcom | Ofcom | The Guardian

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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The Johnson age of corruption and patronage: he appoints Dacre to run Ofcom and Moore to the BBC

Charles Moore and Paul Dacre: One doesn’t believe in public-service broadcasting, so he has been put in charge of the BBC; the other doesn’t believe in impartial, statutorily-regulated media so he has been given the media regulator Ofcom.

There was no process about these appointments; they are a gift from Boris Johnson to flunkies he wants to do his will.

He knows Dacre will ensure that far-right propaganda gets an easy ride from the broadcasting watchdog because Dacre published far-right propaganda every day in the Daily Heil and gave it an easy ride when he was in charge at the Press Complaints Commission (now IPSO).

This Writer is less familiar with Charles Moore, which tends to indicate that I had a taste of his work and turned away in disgust. From the words of others, I understand there will be no attempt at political balance while he has any say in what goes on at Broadcasting House.

Here‘s the story:

Paul Dacre, former editor of the Daily Mail, has been asked to run the national broadcasting regulator, Ofcom, while Lord Moore, the former editor of the Daily Telegraph and biographer of Margaret Thatcher, is believed to be considering accepting the role of chairman of the BBC.

The provocative choice of two such hardline anti-BBC voices has prompted anger and dismay across the broadcasting and entertainment industry. Speaking to the Observer on Saturday evening the Labour peer Andrew Adonis summed up the response of many to the news. “If true this is Cummings operating straight out of the Trump playbook with the intent to undermine our democratic institutions.”

The former government minister continued: “These would be really disgraceful appointments. Neither Paul Dacre at Ofcom nor Charles Moore at the BBC would believe in the mission of the institution they are running. Dacre demonstrably doesn’t believe in impartially and statutorily regulated media and Moore doesn’t believe in public service broadcasting, as his refusal to pay the licence fee demonstrates.”

This man refuses to pay the TV licence fee and Boris Johnson puts him in charge of the BBC!

If you’re still wondering why it’s a big deal, it means Johnson will control the media through these two puppets – and will get away with more of this:

And here are the responses:

An oligarchy is a small group of people running an entire country. That’s what Johnson wants and that is what he is getting. See this, also:

This last one is ironic:

All the organs mentioned in the tweet are indeed now in right-wing hands.

In related news…

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
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1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
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The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook