Daily archives: June 22, 2011

Christian Values

Nadira has been refused the hire of our local church hall in Ramsgate for rehearsal because Medea is “Greek” and “Pagan”. I had thought that the Church of England had come fully to terms with the classical world since before Gibbon. And we are talking the church hall, not the church.

It is a tremendous mistake for the Church of England to start taking an interest in religion. Promoting intolerance is not what the Church of England is for. It is still an established church – do we really want a state church that bans Euripides? I fear for some reason the CofE feels a need to compete with the lunatic evangelist establishments which attract large congregations and promote miracles, speaking in tongues and other arrant rubbish. Oh dear.

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Lib Dem Foreign Policy

It has been pointed out to me that there has been a reply to my Independent on Sunday article on our illiberal foreign policy, by the obscure and evidently untalented Baroness Falkner.

Craig Murray’s polemic against the Liberal Democrats gives examples which are inaccurate, ill-informed or at best unknowing (“The biggest threat to Clegg lies overseas”, 5 June).

On Trident, Mr Murray says we have given up our opposition to an automatic renewal. The policy states that due to the “desire of the Liberal Democrats to make the case for alternatives… we are setting up a study to review the costs, feasibility and credibility of alternatives”.

To imply Lib Dem silence on Bahrain is plain ignorance. We have had discussions with the Foreign Secretary, ministers, the Bahrain ambassador, Bahraini opposition groups, human rights groups and in public meetings, to some effect.

Baroness Falkner of Margravine
Lords Chairman, Lib Dem Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs

On Trident, she fails to answer what I actually said, as opposed to what she says I said. The coalition government has approved £3 billion in development costs for Trident 2. That makes the pretence of consideration of an alternative by a “study” rather difficult to maintain.

On Bahrain, she reinforces my point. What effect have those Lib Dem “discussions” actually had on coalition policy? Where are the ministerial actions, or even statements?

Update: I have corrected Falkner’s name, which I got wrong initially.

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