Selfie-centred: This has never happened (thank goodness) but it is exactly the kind of thing Sir Christopher Chope was supporting.
The practice of taking photographs of female celebrities’ private parts by pointing a camera up their skirts or dresses has won a ringing endorsement from Conservative backbencher Sir Christopher Chope and his ever-willing henchman Phillip Davies.
Mr Chope filibustered a private members’ bill calling for upskirting to be criminalised. Along with his supporters, he spoke for a total of four hours in order to prevent the legislation from progressing through Parliament.
He has defended this indefensible behaviour by saying he hates private members’ bills – shurely shome mishtake as he has tabled dozens of them himself:
We're being lied to. Again. The press is claiming Chope blocked the upskirting bill because he's against private members' bills in principle. But Chope has sponsored 47 private members' bills himself – including one to make NHS patients pay for treatment:https://t.co/KGmEOBsPLEpic.twitter.com/0DKkjc6kEn
Mr Davies is on the record as a supporter of men’s rights, which he believes are being eroded by feminists. Does he believe men have a right to examine the quality of a lady’s underwear if she doesn’t agree to it?
Prime minister Theresa May has expressed her own dissatisfaction with the outcome:
Upskirting is an invasion of privacy which leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed. I am disappointed the Bill didn't make progress in the Commons today, and I want to see these measures pass through Parliament – with government support – soon.
They happily hide behind a Commons rule that a “closure” motion, stopping a Bill from being talked out, can be called if its sponsor can muster 100 MPs to support it – and the legislation should not pass if it does not have the support of 100 MPs.
But this argument ignores the fact that private members’ bills are always debated on Fridays, when most MPs are returning to their constituencies to carry out the work they have to do there.
The solutions proposed by Mr Bercow are reasonable, and would enhance Parliament’s reputation by ensuring private members’ bills are of a sufficiently high quality and that they receive the same consideration in the Commons chamber as other legislation.
They could also mark the end of interference by MPs with their own interests at heart, rather than those of the public. One wonders what Philip Davies would do with himself then.
The Commons Speaker, John Bercow, has suggested the system by which backbench MPs bring in legislation needs to be overhauled.
At present, private members’ bills receive limited debate on Fridays and they stand little chance of becoming law without government support.
It is common for MPs opposing such a bill to talk at length until it runs out of time.
Mr Bercow said this situation “has not enhanced the reputation of the House”.
The Speaker highlighted recommendations previously made by the Procedure Select Committee, including:
Moving private members’ bills from their traditional Friday sitting, when MPs often return to their constituencies
Introducing a “peer group review” with the aim of ensuring fewer, higher-quality bills
Philip Davies: ‘Feminist zealots want women to have their cake and eat it’
If the so-called ‘York Tories’ are determined to invite the Shame of Shipley, Philip Davies, to speak, This Writer would like to encourage opponents of the move to emulate students at Brunel University, when some nonentity called Katie Hopkins spoke there.
Here’s what they did:
How about it, York?
The University of York Conservative and Unionist Association has been criticised for inviting a “misogynistic” Member of Parliament to speak on campus in a forthcoming academic term.
The society, better known as the York Tories, has received criticism on social media for extending an invitation to Philip Davies, the MP for Shipley, to speak on campus.
Davies has represented his constituency of Shipley for over ten years. He has been a vocal supporter of the case for leaving the European Union. Davies was returned to his seat in the most recent election, albeit with a smaller majority.
The York Tories announced yesterday that Davies had been invited to speak on the 9th of February 2018. However, some students reacted with anger at the group’s decision to welcome him to the campus.
One student described Davies as “the most misogynistic MP”.
Davies is well-known for his criticisms of feminism and the modern feminist movement. The MP was criticised for speaking at the International Conference on Men’s Issues, an event produced by the political party Justice for Men & Boys, in 2016, in which he told the attendants that feminists “fight for their version of equality on all the things that suit women – but are very quick to point out that women need special protections and treatment on other things.”
The York Tories themselves have been subject to accusations of sexism in recent months. In November 2016 a Nouse report stated that a “culture of sexism” existed in the society. Finn Judge, who had attended a York Tories AGM and now edits Nouse, told the paper at the time of an atmosphere engineered to make female members uncomfortable during the society’s elections.
Three faces of Philip Davies, and none of them pleasant: The MP talks (and talks, and talks) in a bid to talk out the Istanbul Convention Bill.
I know this is the Season of Goodwill, but I won’t shed any tears if a passing reindeer craps on Philip Davies’s head.
Today (December 16), this man – the Shame of Shipley – tried to filibuster a Parliamentary Bill that would ratify the Istanbul Convention on tackling and preventing violence against women.
Perhaps he holds some kind of grudge against the UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, who co-signed a letter urging the UK government to ratify the Convention.
Emma Watson, the UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador, co-signed a letter calling on the UK government to ratify the Istanbul Convention [Image: Rex Features].
Perhaps his problem lies in the fact that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron, leader of the Liberal Democrats, also signed.
Perhaps he thinks the Conservative Government is betraying him (he thinks it is sexist to focus on violence against women).
Here are some more of the things he said to justify his position during his 78-minute speech:
Because the title of the Bill has about ‘combating violence against women’ then it presumes as long as you support that premise you must support this particular Bill, and therefore if you oppose this Bill it means you must be in favour, as it follows, of violence against women and children.
“Now that’s the kind of level of debate I’d expect from the morons on Twitter.
Having offended Twitter users, he said:
I don’t take the view that violence against women and girls is somehow worse than violence against men and boys.
That’s not the point; the violence may not be worse, but there really is far more of it. I note that the Daily Mirror web page carrying the story from which I’m pulling these quotes has a link to another news story with photographs of a woman who suffered horrific burns after her boyfriend doused her in petrol and set her on fire.
He tried to compare domestic violence with street crime:
My premise is that all the evidence shows men are more likely to be victims of violent crime in this country than women.
“If somebody comes up to because they hate you and beats you up to a pulp, it seems to me the nuance of what they hate you is less important than the scale of the injuries you’ve suffered.
That’s not the point. Street crime involves people who are either strangers or who may be expected to have a certain amount of animosity towards a person. Domestic crime is in the home, where people should expect to feel safe, and is perpetrated by partners who are supposed to be a symbol of that safety – and not a threat. It is a false comparison
This is not, as they say, rocket science. He continued:
He raised the case of Sadie Morris:
A female paedophile was sentenced to five years in jail after photographing herself abusing a three-year-old girl.
Or even the case of a Romanian sex gang led by women who trafficked vulnerable women into Britain and forced them into prostitution.
So what? Two ‘wrongs’ don’t make a ‘right’; these crimes by women don’t justify crimes against them.
In the same vein, when Catherine West told him two women are killed every week, on average, and it is extremely uncomfortable attending their funerals and seeing their children, he said:
There are also funerals of men who have died, and I’m sure that’s just as uncomfortable an experience for their children.
Sure – but two ‘wrongs’ don’t make a ‘right’.
And he said the Istanbul Convention makes it
explicitly clear that it’s fine to discriminate against men.
Does it? Does it really, just by saying it isn’t fine to discriminate against women?
No. It’s a non-sequitur. It doesn’t follow that it is fine to discriminate against men, just because it isn’t fine to discriminate against women. Non-discrimination against either is not mutually exclusive. It would be interesting to challenge Mr Davies on which part of the Istanbul Convention suggests this is true.
The Shame of Shipley eventually shut up after speaking for 78 minutes, when a Motion of Closure (bringing a debate to the vote) was passed. At the vote itself, the Bill was approved by 135 votes to two against. This was the Second Reading, which means the Bill will be considered by a Parliamentary committee and the House of Lords before returning to the Commons for a third time.
The government in fact supports the Bill, and 36 Tory MPs voted for it after Mr Davies was finally forced to sit down.
The “morons” on Twitter have been taking their revenge, of course:
Russell’s opinion of Philip Davies after the Shipley filibusterer talked out a proposed law to help carers park at hospitals.
This Blog has been waiting more than a week to put up this clip of Russell Howard taking the Tories to task over their plan to cut tax credits and their refusal to end the tampon tax.
Here it is, but be warned – the language is spicy!
Russell is originally from Bristol, just like This Writer. He has been dishing it out to our dish-faced prime muppet since his new serious began on BBC2 a few weeks ago. It airs at 10pm every Thursday – last time round he gave Philip Davies a trouncing for talking out the Bill to end hospital parking charges for carers.
As a carer myself, I could not agree with Russell more.
Further to Vox Political‘s article about the two evil Tory MPs who ‘talked out’ the Private Members’ Bill on revenge evictions, here’s fun.
You have Bristol South Labour Party to thank for the following clip of Philip Davies, in full filibustering flow, being slapped down hard by Deputy Speaker Dawn Primarolo (who just happens to be Bristol South’s Labour MP), during last Friday’s debate.
Dawn is stepping down at the end of the current Parliament. Labour’s candidate to replace her is Karin Smith – Yr Obdt Srvt has met her and approves. She is one of that rare breed, a candidate who did not go to Oxford or Cambridge, has not been a SPAD, but has actually spent many years working for a living – in the National Health Service.
But never mind that – you want to see Davies getting his comeuppance. Here it is:
What a shame the next person to stand up was Christopher Chope.
Evil: Christopher Chope (left) and Philip Davies (right) ‘talked out’ a private member’s bill to end ‘revenge’ evictions by private landlords. Are they really representatives of the people?
Take a good look at the faces in the picture (above). The one on the left belongs to Christopher Chope, Conservative MP for Christchurch and the one on the right is our long-term acquaintance, Philip ‘let the disabled work for less than the minimum wage’ Davies, Conservative MP for Shipley.
Oh look – according to the Register of Members’ Financial Interests, Mr Davies is a landlord (albeit on a small scale), receiving rental income from a flat in London.
With Mr Chope, he made it his business to ensure that it would remain possible for callous landlords to victimise these people – even though it was against the wishes of the Coalition government.
The sort of person who does that is not a representative of the people. The sort of person who does that is supporting the privileged few; the rich landlords who are able to charge ridiculous rents and then throw out their tenants for requesting repairs. The sort of person who does that is chasing the money; supporting profit without responsibility.
This blog would suggest that such a person is a whore, in the worst connotations of the term.
Philip Daves, Conservative MP for (to that constituency’s great embarrassment) Shipley: With this history, he should be the last person the Daily Mail asks to justify Coalition policy on the disabled.
Where, exactly, is the “fury” that the Daily Mail wants us to believe has been sparked by the UN’s decision to investigate breaches of human rights by the Coalition government?
Nowhere, apart from at the Daily Mail and the Coalition government!
The paper reported yesterday (correctly) that the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) has launched a formal investigation into whether the UK’s Coalition Conservative and Liberal Democrat government has committed “grave or systemic violations” of the rights of disabled people.
It then went right off the rails by adding that Conservative MPs had branded the investigation as “politically motivated”, saying this country’s record on help for disabled people was among the best in the world. Take particular note of the word “was”.
“These people at the UN are idiots,” said Mr Davies, who is an imbecile. Nobody should accept his word on anything. The people of his Shipley constituency must be bitterly embarrassed that they ever elected him.
In fact, the paper is not wrong in saying the UK’s record was very good, as long as it qualifies that remark by adding “until the general election of 2010”. After then, disability policy went pear-shaped in a big way.
Even the box-out in yesterday’s article – which, one must presume, is intended to show how well the government is treating the disabled – shot itself in the foot.
“The disability living allowance (DLA)… has now been replaced by the personal independence payment (PIP),” it states. “In 2012, there were over 3 million DLA claimants in the UK, but the Government estimates 600,000 fewer disabled people will qualify for PIP by 2018.”
Take note of the wording; the paper accepts that the people losing benefit are disabled. DLA and PIP are intended to provide support for the disabled in their daily lives (including work), so this passage is an admission that the government is cutting disabled people off from the support they need.
Discussing the Work Capability Assessment “for those claiming Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance and Income Support”, the box-out comes seriously unstuck in its attempt to use – shall we say – diplomatic language to disguise what is happening.
“Almost two million people were assessed by health workers” it states. These people were not doctors – they were “health workers”. In fact, it turns out that these so-called medical professionals were almost entirely unqualified to confirm or deny the conditions of the people they were examining; their job was to put simple “yes” or “no” answers in a computer-based tick-box system devised by a private insurance company called Unum, for the purpose of denying benefit to as many people as possible.
“Those ruled unfit for work were then moved onto the new Employment and Support Allowance and were given another exam, again using a points-based system, to decide how much support they qualified for,” the box-out added. This is completely inaccurate, of course. People on the old benefits received just one WCA, to determine whether the government would allow them to receive ESA. They were, however, forced to undergo reassessment at uneven intervals thereafter, in a form of government-sponsored psychological torture.
The sheer volume of error caused by the system was such that no less than 10,600 claimants died between January and November 2011. We have no data on fatalities since then because the cowards in the Coalition government have refused to release them. In addition, the volume of appeals against WCA decisions skyrocketed – even after some of those who lodged proceedings died due to the stress of going through a lengthy procedure while having to survive on nothing but fresh air and the kindness of others.
In response, the government has changed the rules in order to make it harder for people to appeal.
Is this the kind of treatment that your government wants you to think is among the “best in the world”?
The main article also sideswipes UN special rapporteur for housing Raquel Rolnik, although a paragraph rehashing the abusive nickname ‘Brazil Nut’, coined by the Mail a few months ago, appears to have been removed from the web version.
It merely states that she “sparked a furious reaction from Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith after she criticised the so-called ‘Bedroom Tax'”. He wasn’t the only one. Grant Shapps had a few things to say about it too – and both of them were slapped down hard by her response, which demonstrated very clearly that their information was wrong and hers was accurate.
This one is particularly revealing about the Tory reaction to Ms Rolnik’s visit.
Here is information that shows Ms Rolnik was right and the Tories – and the papers supporting them – were wrong.
Finally, here is an article about the Mail‘s response to the UN poverty ambassadors who said Coalition welfare changes may breach the UK’s international treaty obligations to the poor.
Put it all together and there’s no reason at all to pay any attention to the Daily Mail or its coterie of Tory rent-a-quotes.
Samuel Miller should be known to all those of you who have followed the plight of the sick and disabled under the Coalition government.
He has written the following comment, which Wordpress seems keen to deny with an ‘Invalid security token’ warning:
“The Daily Mail’s fury at the UN’s inquiry into disability rights violations is predictable and frankly feigned. An initial analysis of its published news stories reveals that the tabloid has, for the most part, willfully ignored the welfare crisis for Britain’s sick and disabled people and has paid scant attention to the deaths associated with the draconian welfare reforms.
“As an experiment, take the names from this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&amp;v=LmTI3NETGGs) and insert them into the site search of the Daily Mail, filtering by ‘most recent’, ‘oldest’, and ‘relevance’. You’ll easily find Stephanie Bottrill (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/search.html?sel=site&searchPhrase=stephanie+bottrill ), but be hard-pressed to locate other deceased individuals, such as Craig Monk (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2117718/British-people-committing-suicide-escape-poverty-Is-State-wants.html; thanks largely to the concern of journalist Sonia Poulton).
“Other welfare deaths covered by the Daily Mail include only Jacqueline Harris (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2513284/Half-blind-woman-crippled-pain-killed-benefits-bosses-stopped-disability-payments–following-TWO-MINUTE-assessment.html), and Mark Wood (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2570144/Aspergers-sufferer-phobia-food-dead-judged-fit-work-benefits-cut.html)—the death of David Clapson, a diabetic former soldier, recently received coverage by both The Mirror and The Guardian, but was ignored by the Daily Mail.
“I wish to commend you for your tireless efforts and support, Mike.”
Thank you for the kind words, Samuel.
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