Mob Morality Again 214


Nobody has more contempt than me for the House of Lords or for cronies of Tony Blair. But I shall not join in the pillorying of John Sewel over his private life. If he wants to take cocaine and spend time with prostitutes that is entirely his own business. Britain’s periodic outcries over private morality are contemptible. There is no legitimate reason why the activities of consenting adults in their own homes should be of concern to the rest of us. Not the least unpleasant aspect is that those journalists and politicians who whip up such witch hunts are for the most part hiding secrets about themselves. That in 2015 we still have not come to terms with the most ordinary sexual desire or formulated a more rational policy response to use of narcotics, is unfortunate.

I expect if I dug around I could find a lot of things to dislike Sewel for, in terms of the policies he has supported. But to attack political opponents over their private lives – assuming the necessary factors of adults and consent – is low.


214 thoughts on “Mob Morality Again

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  • Republicofscotland

    Surely Craig you’re long enough in the tooth to realise, that everything is fair game in the eyes of the media, I’m not condoning the media’s actions but if you’re in the publics eye then to the media you’re in the firing line, like it or not.

  • Rose

    No I don’t think people should be pilloried for what they do in private.

    But when those who lay down the law for the rest of us transgress those laws, then surely it is right for their hypocrisy to be exposed.

  • Martin

    What’s really “low” is the Good Lord sniffing coke off the tart’s tits with

    “a £5 note”.

    The utter cad, no class whatsoever.

    Though an equally valid viewpoint might be that it’s a form of austerity cum debauchery and that the gentry are also feeling the pinch. I might go to Lord Sewel’s website and if he has a PayPal donate button, maybe send him a few quid.

  • craig Post author

    Rose

    The difficulty is when the objective or the effect of such moralising is to reinforce the hypocritical social strictures. If you take that line you should make plain that it was his pronouncements which were wrong, and not his sexual behaviour. I see no sign of that approach anywhere.

  • OldMark

    When I read this I thought it was a direct re-run of the Lord Lambton end of the pier show back in ’73; in fact the only difference AFAIK is that Lambton smoked a joint after his tryst with Norma Levy whereas Lord Sewell here is seen to snort cocaine during his session with the unnamed good time gal.

    ‘That in 2015 we still have not come to terms with the most ordinary sexual desire or formulated a more rational policy response to use of narcotics, is unfortunate.’

    That’s still largely true Craig, but a few glimpses of enlightenment are discernable in 2015- firstly, the recent decision of the Durham Chief Constable wrt to the use of cannabis in his area, and secondly the plans of Gwent Police reported today wrt to the sex trade in Newport-

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-east-wales-33667829

  • Clark

    John Sewel may be the “very powerful man” mentioned by the “ex-MI5 field agent” under the pseudonym Acot on BBC Newsnight last week.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    “There is no legitimate reason why the activities of consenting adults in their own homes should be of concern to the rest of us.”

    If women are forced into prostitution, perhaps brought over from third world countries to do so, or are so poorly paid and unable to find remunerative employment that they need to do it to make ends meet, that is of considerable concern to us all.

    If they are voluntarily choosing it to maintain themselves above a reasonable standard of living, that’s another matter, and is their own business.

    If, by purchasing cocaine, people are reinforcing the power of violent criminals, that is of considerable concern to us all. A political solution has to be found to such matters to alleviate the violence and misery that this causes.

    Kind regards,

    John

  • John Spencer-Davis

    Clark / Craig re Jack Straw

    I missed that: what’s it about?

    Kind regards,

    John

  • craig Post author

    John

    It is an extraordinary urban myth that anything but the tiniest minority of prostitutes are forced in to it. That includes girls who come from abroad to work as prostitutes.

    Whether they would make different choices if other economic opportunities were available is a different question. Many undoubtedly would.

  • Clark

    This was the Newsnight programme:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b061qsg2/newsnight-15072015

    15/07/2015
    An exclusive interview with the MI5 surveillance officer traumatised by his job and abandoned by his bosses.

    Acot’s story was in three sections. The first concerned surveillance of Irish Republicans, the second Islamic extremists. The third was the shortest and least detailed, regarding Acot monitoring “a very powerful man” in London, attempting to gather evidence of child abuse. It was stated that evidence of child abuse was not found, but evidence of drug use and prostitutes was found.

    It was stated that MI5 frequently withhold evidence from the police, and that MI5 do not trust the police with the results of such investigations due to turnover of police officers between departments.

    I think this might be a power-play between the BBC and the government regarding future BBC funding.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    Craig

    Fair enough: I’ll accept your word on that. It does not detract from the main point.

    J

  • John Spencer-Davis

    Clark

    Thank you.

    I haven’t forgotten Craig’s rather cryptic reference, perhaps a year or so ago now, to an “address” that he alleged Jack Straw used to visit in London for clandestine purposes. I could never find anything else about it. I wonder if these are not unconnected.

    Kind regards,

    John

  • Clark

    Craig, our comments crossed. What? MI5 have had Straw under surveillance and he’s using drugs and prostitutes too?

  • Republicofscotland

    So in video Lord Sewel refers the the £200 quid he gets for lunch provided by the taxpayer, Lord Sewel then seems to say that the £200 quid is paying for the cocaine they’re snorting.

  • David Halliday

    For me, the barbarity of the production and distribution process makes cocaine a morally repugnant drug in a way that, say, ecstasy is not (or at least is not to the same degree). Take coke and you support what it has done to swathes of South and Central America. There is also a class element to it, I admit. If his Lordship had been sniffing glue I couldn’t give a stuff. He, of course and inevitably, wasn’t. He was snorting the drug of choice of bankers, aristos and pop moguls.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Hear, hear re. Sewel. I imagine a good number of our politicians are far from unacquainted with cocaine and/or commercial sex. I don’t think the issue is of direct relevance to those using food banks.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    Ba’al Zevul
    3:33pm

    Actually, you’re mistaken there, Ba’al. I have personally issued food bank vouchers to people who have spent every penny they have on crack.

    I don’t blame them. I blame the crack dealers and the state, which simply will not find an acceptable solution to destroying the power of illegal control of drugs.

    Kind regards,

    John

  • Daniel

    “Welcome to the Houses of Parliament Fun”.

    Blimey, it makes one wonder how many more of them are at it.

  • Clark

    It’s a matter of hypocrisy rather than personal morality. These members of government are taking drugs they won’t legalise for the population at large. Prostitutes are routinely victimised by councils, police and the tax office. MI5 gather the evidence and what? File it secretly? It’s pure madness.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    Clark
    3:53 pm

    Agreed. One wonders at the mentality of people who will snort cocaine at 1:00 pm and go and vote against its legalisation at 3:00 pm.

    Hope you are well. Kind regards,

    John

  • Ba'al Zevul

    JS-D Apologies, that should have occurred to me before being flippant. It’s a much more general problem than it used to be. My attempted point being that a civilised state should not be dependent on food banks whether or not its pols are crackheads.

    But, hey, he’s no spring chicken, is he? Grudging respect, there…

  • Natalie Graham

    Last I heard possession of cocaine was still a criminal offence with a punishment on conviction of up to seven years imprisonment and/or a fine. I find it hard to accept the idea that a member of the House of Lords should be able to commit what is regarded as a serious criminal offence with impunity because he does it in private. What other criminal offences should we allow our politicians to indulge in because it is none of our business? I am also more than a little baffled by the notion that engaging in drug taking with two prostitutes falls within the realm of “the most ordinary sexual desire”. Are you sure you haven’t revealed a little more about yourself than you intended? Is this one of those embarrassing, “What? Doesn’t everybody do that?” revelations.

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