Leeds University Union Threaten to Ban My Speech on Palestine 224


I am giving a talk entitled “Palestine/Israel: A Unitary Secular State or a Bantustan Solution” in Leeds University tomorrow. I have just been told by Leeds University Union I will not be allowed to speak unless I submit what I am going to say for pre-vetting.

I am truly appalled that such a gross restriction on freedom of speech should be imposed anywhere, let alone in a university where intellectual debate is meant to be an essential part of the learning experience. I really do not recognise today’s United Kingdom as the same society I grew up in. The common understanding that the values of a liberal democracy are the foundation of society appears to have evaporated.

As regular readers know well, I do not write speeches in advance but always speak extempore. My opinions on Israel and Palestine are very well documented on this blog and elsewhere. I want to see a single, unitary state in Israel/Palestine, encompassing everyone who currently lives in those territories, as a secular democracy blind to ethnicity and religion. This includes an acceptance that further forced large population movements by anybody are not desirable and the Palestinians should receive more compensation than restitution. If I am not permitted to express this view within a University, I find that truly shocking.

I should be equally shocked if anybody who held views very different to my own were not permitted to express them.

I think that if people like me are now being prevented from speaking, society has crossed a very dangerous line indeed.


224 thoughts on “Leeds University Union Threaten to Ban My Speech on Palestine

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  • TrueBritishBrexiteer

    Voltaire has raised his ugly head again, perhaps CM will retaliate by banning habbsky and anon1 from his blog now, we have had enough of their genocide apologism on behalf of the khazanate !

  • mayeaux wren

    Craig, I’ve a thought. Why don’t you: submit a speech wherein you depict Israel as a marvellous place, a light unto nations providing a moral compass to us all, with the Palestinians as the authors of their own misery; get a big student union tick of approval; and then on the night, a quick apology (dog ate my homework), and then deliver the intended speech extempore just as you’d intended.

    That’d be a giggle wouldn’t it? At least then if they did move to shut you down (and they could well do, late stage or no) they’d have to do it under a public gaze, and that of a hostile audience.

  • Alcyone

    I wonder how many people are aware that the words free (and freedom) and friend share the same roots, originally grounded in ‘to love/beloved’.

    So freedom of thought is a bit of a contradiction, since thought has nothing to do with love. Insight does, but man has moved away so far from Nature that very little of that goes on. And so we live in wheels-within-wheels-within wheels of never-ending conflict; inside our brains and so outside.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4GLAKEjU4w

  • mayeaux wren

    AAMVN you swine,

    You stole my idea before I even thought of it.

    Anyway, take it as a ‘I second that’.

  • Kempe

    I can’t believe you’re surprised at this Craig. It’s all part and parcel of the “No Platform”/”Safe Space”/”Trigger Words” culture designed to protect the snowflake generation from hearing anything that might upset them.

    How the poor dears are going to manage when they leave Uni and have to make their way in the real world I can’t imagine.

  • Dave

    Once anti-free speech laws such as the catchall “hate crime” legislation is in place then, with the Prime Minister agreeing a wider definition of “anti-Semitism”, then every word spoken can perceived to be offensive/hateful by anyone anywhere, and it’s chilling/intimidating for many to be accused of a proscribed motive, because on conviction it carries up to an additional 2 years jail sentence and can affect your life prospects if the mud sticks. The irony of Graig’s complaint is his wild use of the term “racist” is exactly the threat to free speech he bemoans.

    • craig Post author

      No it isn’t. I regard the current clamour to limit immigration as simply racist. But I am not attempting to stop anybody from being able to articulate their anti-immigration views. Their ability to put those views forward, and my ability to decry them as racist, is what free speech means. It isn’t determining which opinion is correct and permitting it.

      • Dave

        Except under “hate crime” legislation “racism” is a proscribed motive and can be perceived to be a proscribed motive by anyone anywhere and once reported the Police are required to investigate and/or log it as a “hate incident” that’s then used to blame Brexit for a rise in “hate crime”. Anti-immigration is “racist” has been the mantra for many years, but the “anti-racists” are getting their own medicine by being accused of “anti-Semitism” and finding it uncomfortable, but not as bad as facing a hostile crowd outside a pub in Scotland. I.e. Its either legitimate to criticise both immigration and Israel or neither.

        • craig Post author

          Don’t worry Dave. They are not about to arrest Theresa May and the Brexiters for racism, racists though they be.

          • Dave

            Yes which shows the inequity of the “hate crime” laws, as poor old Paul Gascoigne was charged with “racism” for making a feeble joke during an ‘audience with Paul’ as part of an attempt to earn some money to avoid skid row!

          • husq

            People need to move on from this ‘Race’ business don’t you think?
            It’s quite regressive.

            “I am an African American,” says Duana Fullwiley, “but in parts of Africa, I am white.” To do fieldwork as a medical anthropologist in Senegal, she says, “I take a plane to France, a seven- to eight-hour ride. My race changes as I cross the Atlantic. There, I say, ‘Je suis noire,’ and they say, ‘Oh, okay—métisse—you are mixed.’ Then I fly another six to seven hours to Senegal, and I am white. In the space of a day, I can change from African American, to métisse, to tubaab [Wolof for “white/European”]. This is not a joke, or something to laugh at, or to take lightly. It is the kind of social recognition that even two-year-olds who can barely speak understand. ‘Tubaab,’ they say when they greet me.”

            In fact, “There is no genetic basis for race,” says Fullwiley, who has studied the ethical, legal, and social implications of the human genome project with sociologist Troy Duster at UC, Berkeley.

            http://harvardmagazine.com/2008/05/race-in-a-genetic-world-html

          • fred

            Extremists always attack the character of those who don’t agree with them rather than address the issues.

          • Chris Rogers

            CM,

            I find it amazing that you keep maintaining anyone who decided they could no longer support a Pan-European political institution for its many economic policy blunders and outright anti-democratic nature as being Racists. If I’m a fucking RACIST for caring about my fellow man, so be it, but please, drop this ludicrous claim as its bloody annoying.

  • Dave

    In practice the catch-all “hate laws” are a tool of the powerful/State against the weak/people because they decide who is denounced the loudest and investigated/prosecuted. I mean the Prime Minister announced a wider definition of the term/insult “anti-Semitism”, which the Israel lobby can deploy to silence critics, at the same time the UK voted against Israel at the UN regarding settlements, which would be deemed “anti-Semitic” under the new definition.

    The “internationalist Left” may have welcomed the curtailment of freedoms as part of the “anti-racist” struggle, but the “globalist Left” want to use the new laws against pro-Palestinian critics of Israel, and their “war on terror”, which includes against the “internationalist Left”.

    Mick Hume recognises the problem and advocates an “internationalist Left” that defends freedom of speech. I.e. he doesn’t want the “internationalists” to be the useful idiots of the “globalists”.

  • Jim McNeill

    I’m sorry Craig, but as you well know various anti
    Semitic hate groups operating under supposedly
    Pro-Palestinian banners have found British
    universities to be a fertile ground for spreading
    their hatred. As a result many of our universities
    are no longer a welcoming place for Jewish
    students.

    The authorities made the right call.

    • D_Majestic

      Do you have details/links for these anti-semitic hate groups? If so perhaps you would furnish details. To me any form of racial hatred is abhorrent.

    • Alfred Bouch

      Name one Jim, and show us the evidence. We see these allegations thrown about but rarely do they turn out to be genuine. There is too the Hasbara misinformation unit from Israel to take into account but anyway, show us some evidence.

  • Deepgreenpuddock

    I would want to investigate the precise source of this pre-condition. I think. it will be found that the person or people/faction behind this are rather frightened of your message and possibly attention seeking individuals of limited intellectual capacity. The. point they will try to make is that they do not want to provide an opportunity or forum for some kind of hate filled or irrational or extreme reaction although. one. always suspects. that there. is an underlying agenda which wants to suppress a particular view, persuasively. presented. It is quite conceivable that proponents of (say) a ‘greater Israel’ or supporters. of the extreme fundamental religious Israeli elements will conduct some kind of disruptive campaign or counter demonstration.
    The real problem however is that in that event( some kind of disruption/demonstration) pre-approval/vetting achieves nothing, since your position is already well known in general, and so. is that of the opposing. view and. that polarisation is already fixed. in. place. What. you. are. doing. with your. speech is trying to be persuasive in advocating that perspective and that. requires acceptance. of the. fact that the. process. is, perforce, going to. become extempore (that is what ‘speech’ IS) and provide a forum for free exchange and development of ideas and understanding.
    Whoever it is cannot have failed to understand that their position is untenable. I am not even sure their condition makes much sense since as far as I can see it is unenforceable or has obvious limits since it is impossible to have any kind of meaningful exchange if the words and meanings require some arbitrary pre-approval and are then ‘read out’. What is the practical purpose of the speech if it is to be read out as a script.
    However. we live in strange times and there. is a general process where the essential formalities of debate and the self- discipline of engaging constructively with others with different views has become eroded.It. may. be that the. universities have now descended to the intellectual level of the primary school playground.

    • craig Post author

      Very good comment, thanks. I tried to call Leeds University Union early yesterday evening, but was told that the evening “helpdesk” has no means of communication with anybody in a responsible position and does not have any numbers for any officers of the Students Union. When I was a Students Union President many years ago evening calles would get put through to me in the bar. The world has changed.

    • SA

      Slightly tangential to the discussion but in the last few years teaching in university scientific courses has meant that you are required to send a PowerPoint Presentation of your course lectures so that the Students can read it beforehand. The practice means less engagement with lecturers and less spontaneity for lecturers.

  • wendy

    a result of the henry jackson society – student rights offshoot and the governments Prevent policy. and not too far the revelations of the al-jazeera documentary uncovering the activities of the israeli lobby within uk parliament.

    • Sharp Ears

      You have it exactly. The only reference missing is one to SIR Eric Pickles, proponent of the anti semitism legislation, etc, very influential in the CFoI and with the introduction of both Cameron’s and May’s legislation.

  • Bert

    Unfortunately, this is going on across the Anglo-sphere. Numerous speakers on various subjects that do not happen to jibe with current thinking among the crazies of the new-left who seem to be buried in cheap-skate identity politics when the nut-bags of the right have driven their hideous neo-liberal train at full steam straight into a cliff face.

    In the last forty years there has not been a better to time re-assert the middle-of-the-road values of social democracy. Yet the left is mired in hideous and dangerous trivialities. In the US there are threats of legal action against Universities that allow anyone to criticise feminism… no matter how extreme or absurd feminism may become. There are now even those who advocate branding all men’s groups as hate groups to be criminalised.

    The left has recently been summarised as representing everyone who is oppressed except the oppressor who is the white heterosexual male. This overlooks the simple fact that the left of the twentieth century was founded and substantiated by people who were overwhelmingly white heterosexual males.

    We seem to have entered a stage whereby, in spite of the fact that the right is utterly discredited, political activism is lost in a swamp of silliness. This is another swamp that needs to be drained.

    Bert.

    • SA

      The ‘Left’ you describe is a pseudo left. This is a neoliberal identity politics type of left that ignores the bigger picture. This should not really be confused with true socialist values.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    This is unfortunately becoming general, and I think I mentioned something similar a few days ago:

    http://www.lep.co.uk/news/education/row-erupts-over-claims-of-anti-semitism-1-8406326

    Here’s the crux:

    A spokesman for UCLan said: “The UK Government has formally adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s new definition of what constitutes anti-Semitism.

    “We believe the proposed talk ‘Debunking Misconceptions on Palestine’ contravenes the new definition and furthermore breaches University protocols for such events where we require assurances of a balanced view or a panel of speakers representing all interests. In this instance, our procedures determined that the proposed event would not be lawful, and therefore it will not proceed as planned.”

    This refers:

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/dec/12/antisemitism-definition-government-combat-hate-crime-jews-israel
    (extremely biased piece, btw.)

    And I think the weasel words of interest here are:

    The guidance says it could be considered antisemitic to accuse Jews of being more loyal to Israel or their religion than to their own nations, or to say the existence of Israel is intrinsically racist.

    …even if it were true, which of course we are not now allowed to suggest.

  • michael norton

    EU
    closes down free speech

    French far-right leader Marine Le Pen loses EU immunity from prosecution for tweeting pictures of IS violence
    Ministry of Truth

    free speech is being erroded all over the place.
    If you can’t speak freely,
    you will have difficulty thinking freely.

    • Republicofscotland

      It will allow the them to seriously question Le Pen on matters regarding cash given to aides, which is far more serious than Tweeting IS beheadings.

      So you see, there’s method in their madness.

      • michael norton

        You couldn’t make this shit up

        Scottish Police Authority boss defends £950-a-day accountant

        3 hours ago
        From the section Scotland politics
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-39141180
        The head of the Scottish Police Authority has defended paying an accountant £950 a day to help sort out its multi-million pound deficit.

        ——–

        I suppose, if it is not your actual money, who gives a fuck.

        • Republicofscotland

          Hopefull Le Pen will be found guilty of illegally funneling funds to her aides, and removed from the presidential list.

          On the upside for Le Pen, she could spend all day posting IS video’s.

  • Republicofscotland

    Oh look this one’s for Norton, and no Michael they’re not (pigs) they’re police officers.

    “Policing in England and Wales is in a “potentially perilous state” as government cuts lead to investigations being shelved, vulnerable victims being let down and tens of thousands of dangerous suspects remaining at large, a watchdog has warned.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/mar/02/inspectorate-police-engaging-dangerous-practices-austerity-cuts-diane-abbott

    • michael norton

      Scotland’s police service is facing a £188m funding gap by 2020/21, the country’s financial watchdog has said.

      In a highly-critical report, the auditor general said she had again found “substantial issues” during her examination of the Scottish Police Authority (SPA) accounts.

      The accounts cover the £1.1bn spent by the SPA and Police Scotland in the past year.

      Auditor general Caroline Gardner said they were of “poor quality”.

      Ms Gardner said she had made “significant corrections” because of inaccurate records and poor financial management, and called for “substantial improvement”.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-38403677

      How will you manage to run a country, if you can’t even run Police Scotland?

      • Republicofscotland

        “How will you manage to run a country, if you can’t even run Police Scotland?”

        ________

        By not paying millions in VAT, the cash will be invested in the police force.

        However police forces pay no VAT in England, yet they are in a terrible financial crisis.

        I should ask you the question you asked me, but I doubt you’d have the answer.

  • Republicofscotland

    Meanwhile.

    Trust says four out of five hospitals in England are seriously inadequate.

    “Safety at four in five hospital trusts in England is not good enough, a leading hospital inspector has warned.”

    “Professor Sir Mike Richards says that the NHS stands on a “burning platform” and that the need for change is clear.”

    “His warning follows a review which said staffing and overcrowding were major concerns and that unprecedented pressures on hospitals were putting patients at risk.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-39071485

  • Phil

    I am sorry but freedom of speech comes with the responsibility not to insult, you should be well aware of this. All that they have asked is to have an outline of what you plan to talk about so that they can make an assessment. You are known to be a controversial speaker (Jewish and Zionist spring to mind) so it is their responsibility to make sure you do not offend. It is also standard practice to ask this beforehand.

    So my question is simple – if you will not give them an outline I presume you have something to hide or Pluto insult one group or the other ?

    • Ba'al Zevul

      Wouldn’t it be more or less impossible to give a talk supportive of the Palestinians’ rights without offending some sensitive soul of the other persuasion? Which will be well represented in the audience, on current form, and taking detailed notes, down to the hand gestures used. My guess is that Leeds wants to follow Lancaster’s model (see above) and try doing ‘balanced’ presentations only. Which would mean, in the red corner, Craig Murray, and in the blue corner Mark Regev.

      Homogenising and sanitising legitimate debate in this way may be fine for primary school. In secondary school they now teach critical thinking, so perhaps not so fine. In tertiary education, it’s utterly fucking absurd. These are real issues, in the real world, and all you can ever hope for (in vain, in Regev’s case) is for assertions to be confirmed at all points by credible data.

    • craig Post author

      I know not this responsibility not to insult of which you speak. Were I to meet Tony Blair walking down the street, I would insult him.

      • fred

        “What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.”

        Robert F. Kennedy

        • Hmmm

          Probably explains all the vitriol aimed at Corbyn. Can’t fault his policies so attack the man. Still can’t find anything to stick to him so accuse him of anti-semitism. Bizarre, bonkers but people fall for it.

          • fred

            It could well explain some of it at least.

            Some might be because he actually does look a lot like Albert Steptoe.

    • Dave Price

      “I am sorry but freedom of speech comes with the responsibility not to insult, you should be well aware of this”.

      Well I am sorry too, but this is wrong when the context is a political presentation where anyone can attend or not as they wish. There is instead a responsibility on the audience to judge beforehand whether they are happy enough to attend. They should be prepared to hear out the speaker in a courteous manner and, if the opportunity is offered, to raise points within the civilised norms of debate. If they are not prepared to do this, if they expect to be offended beyond all enduring, they should not turn up. There is room here for mistaken expectation – in which case the audience member should just leave with the minimum of fuss.

        • Dave Price

          Ah yes where the ‘artistic director’ has creatively enhanced the opera to take place in a munitions factory in a grim police state, or a heroine den in a post-apocalyptic aquarium. Trouble is it’s hard to walk out when you’ve paid the best part of a grand for two seats…

          • lysias

            I watch Wagner operas whenever I have the chance. Beautiful music, great drama. Closest thing actually being produced today to the Greek tragedies I read so much of when I was studying Classics in university. Fortunately, the Washington National Opera here in D.C. does not indulge in the kind of productions that you describe.

          • D_Majestic

            Dave P.-Yes. The current Bayreuth ‘Ring’, for one. Seats available until very recently-I wonder why? Lysias-R.O.H. Covent Garden is largely comprised of the same Eurotrash productions. I will look at Washington if it avoids the worst excesses of regietheater. Thanks to you both.

          • Dave Price

            Currently the only form of live or recorded entertainment I’ll pay good money to see. Fortunately I’ve not had to sit through a live production of anything as bad as my description above, but I did have in mind a version of Don Giovanni, which is in my DVD collection only because it has Ekaterina Siurina in it. In this version Don Giovanni is mortally wounded from the very start and so he spends the whole of the opera dying, his demise only delayed by occasionally shooting up with heroin.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkk9Fwk1NLw

          • Ba'al Zevul

            No, any Wagner opera… I have never attended one, for the exact reason you state, viz:

            if they expect to be offended beyond all enduring, they should not turn up.

            Yours sounds rather more interesting than most, in fact. If it weren’t for the ‘music’ I’d give it a go (exit, pursued by rabid valkyries in full howl)

          • Dave Price

            I realise it was an amusing aside, so you’re not looking to be persuaded, however I can’t help myself… If, as someone suggested to me, you approach it more like a film soundtrack, rather than say a Mozart opera, you might find something there. Watching on DVD at home is a good start since you can pace your attention depending on how epic or how daft the action is, and it’s a good deal cheaper. Plus you can pick a good one. I like the New York Met’s version with Bryn Terfel.

          • Ba'al Zevul

            Each to their own, Dave, and I have no wish to be genuinely offensive. I find Wagner overblown, unsubtle, and, being a reptile, hysterically hyperemotional. It’s like being beaten over the head by a Victorian interior designer. I find Mozart’s instrumental work repetitive and formulaic; some of his vocal stuff, as long as I don’t understand the words, is marvellous. OTOH I worship JS Bach, Handel and Beethoven, enjoy Soler, Prokoviev and Indian raga, can even tolerate small doses of Stravinsky. I tend not to listen to songs..it may be that I prefer music as an abstract thing. Each to their own. But you should really try and get your Wagner production staged.

          • Dave Price

            I may come back to you to kick off the crowd funding 😉

            The composers you mention are pretty much on my top list too, particularly Beethoven. I have only in the last few years become obsessed (not too strong a word for it) with vocal music. And for me, I felt I gained a better understanding of the instrumental work of Handel and Mozart after immersing in their vocal works.

    • SA

      And I guess anyone is free to be ‘insulted’ so there you are nobody can say anything controversial in case you insult some shrinking violet.

    • Chris Rogers

      Phil,

      Sorry old bean, but ‘Freedom of Speech’ means exactly as it states on the tin, namely FREEDOM. By your comments you have little idea what FREEDOM entails. As for upsetting people, well as we say in Wales: Fuck em!

  • Peter BAXTER-DERRINGTON

    Absolutely gobsmacked into a mumbling inarticulate splodge. Me..? Yes..! Students being denied a fundamental tenet of learning at university..? Even more so..!

    Thought – do your talk as a vlog (or whatever it’s called) and put it into social media cyberspace; be assured it will reach your intended audience along with a whole heap of people who will appreciate discovering you and your views probably for the first time…

  • bevin

    “In practice the catch-all “hate laws” are a tool of the powerful/State against the weak/people because they decide who is denounced the loudest and investigated/prosecuted…”
    Dave is right. So are those who note that this began, in the current era, on the ‘left.’
    I can recall ‘platforms’ being denied to such people as Patrick Wall and the Monday Club. It was one of the Anti-Nazi League’s tactics too. It is very easy to draw the line between those who one is ready to hear and those whose opinions are unacceptably threatening. These last are generally people who might possibly change one’s neighbours’ minds.
    The problem is that those who ban the BNP or David Irving are pushing a wedge which inevitably ends up in the banning of extremely moderate views such as Craig’s which are actually, on this matter of Palestine, close to being shared by the majority of people.
    The real threat that Craig poses is that almost any jury in the world would find his opinions on the subject sympathetic: Israel is doomed when the public understands not only what it represents, in terms of ideas, but what it means, hourly to millions of Palestinians. In the meantime it has become the keystone in an arch of authoritarianism, the fascist worship of force and racism- its old alliance with South Africa now being replaced by one with Modi’s India.

    • Deepgreenpuddock

      Well that was a bit of a laugh, Fred. you are right of course that Balmoral or ‘Bel-mo- rell’ as Mr Trump no doubt would say, is quite. cold IN THE WINTER.
      in 1981/2 the. temperature.in Braemar fell to minus 27.? C.
      I was there and let me tell you it was bloody cold. I. remember looking at my makeshift. max/min thermometer on the. back wall and seeing minus 26 and being both numbed and incredulous. The. mornings consisted. of trying to get the water to flow, using a hair dryer, while crawling under the floor. The heating system failed utterly and the whole. house with. new baby. depended on the trusty Wood Burning stove, which was. kept roaring for two months continuously-December and January (with a. peculiar two day mild spell around new year). Anyway the funny thing is that the same area can get quite hot in the summer and October can be rather nice up that way. Of course the Royals are there for the grouse, the Salmon fishing (season ends in October) and the start of the stalking season-although rather doubt that much of that goes on still in the. royal dotages.
      Maybe Donald will be invited to clamber up Lochnagar.
      With a. bit of luck he will come to the boulder field and fall off one of the big boulders,head first, although that would. have to. be a fatal. fall as he is. impervious to brain damage being only marginally sentient. anyway, or maybe have a heart attack with the exertion. The. local village of Ballater will. fill. up with. American security. people well in advance. of any visit. there. may. even be a boost for the local hotels.
      Another reason that they might choose that area is that it is easier to protect from potential assassins. immigrants or unusual characters tend to stick out in a way that they. don’t. in London.
      There is also a well oiled security system in place in the area. That may be the main reason. There is a local rumour that David Cameron has acquired a. house not far away, near Tarland -again the availability of security measures may be important.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        It’s the end of the stag stalking season, DGP – they get smelly after that and the toffs don’t want to shoot them. It’s the hinds from then on, whose lack of antlers used to mean that the keepers cull them unassisted – though a few late toffs did join in on some estates. But there are other October opportunities for the DofE to plug his loathsome guest by accident, before being compelled to invite him for a round of bloody golf on ones’ private bloody golf course, damn it.

        http://countrysportscotland.com/other-info/shooting-seasons/

    • michael norton

      How Scottish is David Cameron?

      “The ties of blood grow thicker,” the ex-prime minister said in 2012, evoking the United Kingdom’s intertwined lineage.
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-26082372
      “My surname goes back to the West Highlands,” he said, in a speech at the Olympic Park, in East London.

      “The name Cameron might mean ‘crooked nose’ but the clan motto is ‘Let us unite’, and that is exactly what we in these islands have done.”

  • John

    > Alcyone March 2, 2017 at 06:31

    > …, since thought has nothing to do with love.

    What ? This is opinion masquerading as fact, on stilts.

    • Alcyone

      I seem to be flushing out the Ians and Johns this afternoon. Next will come the Toms, Dicks and Harrys. Or maybe the Ians and Johns really are the Dicks masquerading as Ian and John.

    • Republicofscotland

      Under French law, publishing violent images can be punished, by up to three years in jail, and a fine of 75,000 euros ($78,800).

      I’m sure Le Pen will have some misappropriated EU funds lying about somewhere, if they decide to fine her.

  • Dalia Gabay

    Good. You’re about as credible as David Irving, an even worse liar and should not be allowed to poison impressionable young minds unchecked!! If you had confidence in your own research, you wouldn’t object to it being previewed so, what are you afraid of??!

    • Alcyone

      Dear, dear, dear Dalia: what are you afraid of on what Craig might say to our sweet little impressionable minds?

    • glenn_uk

      Name one lie that Craig has said.

      If you can’t (and I don’t think you can), that makes _you_ the liar around here.

    • Chris Rogers

      I see ardent ZIONISM of an unpalatable kind is alive and well with your comment. No doubt the wholescale slaughter of innocents is a price worth paying. How you sleep at night God only knows!

    • Republicofscotland

      “Peers who backed an amendment to the Brexit bill to guarantee the rights of EU citizens have urged Conservative MPs in the House of Commons to support the change when the bill returns.”

      __________

      The world’s best funded care home the House of Lords, speaks, over Brexit, we’ve to listen to these unelected, undemocratic troughers – not likely.

      https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/mar/01/lords-defeat-government-over-rights-of-eu-citizens-in-uk-brexit-bill

      Admittedly on this occasion they mean well, but the second largest chamber in the world (stuffed full with around 900 free-loaders) after China, is mostly insignificant in my opinion, mainly because it’s undemocratically unelected.

      • fred

        European citizens were always going to be allowed to stay anyway, it was just a question of if it would be unilateral or as part of a deal for UK citizens living in Europe.

        This didn’t stop the SNP causing alarm with their scaremongering. Where did the SNP get the names and addresses of every foreign national living in Scotland from anyway? There wasn’t a breach of the data protection act I hope.

        http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/snp-scaremongering-over-post-brexit-letter-to-eu-nationals-1-4176986

          • fred

            I don’t like seeing someone made victim of a Nationalist witch hunt because they told the truth.

            Remember I proved what you accused him of saying regarding the London underground was lies.

            The SNP are Nationalists, that’s what the “N” stands for, stop trying to deny it.

          • Republicofscotland

            “Remember I proved what you accused him of saying regarding the London underground was lies.”

            _______

            Pft.

            You proved nothing, except you have a fanciful imagination, with your, oh it must’ve been 19,000 white supremicists nonsense that signed the petition.

          • fred

            You claimed Sadiq Khan had said there were too many white men working on the London Underground.

            He didn’t, he said there were thirteen white men on the board and only three women.

            You tried to brand him a racist based on downright lies. That is despicable.

            But then you would hate him wouldn’t you, he’s British Pakistani.

            Remember the time you got two entire threads deleted posting your H0locaust denial crap?

          • Republicofscotland

            “But then you would hate him wouldn’t you, he’s British Pakistani.”

            ________

            I’m not the one claiming, that “white supremicists” done it, you have a fanciful imagination.

            I’m not the one backing xenophobic isolationism.

          • fred

            You are the one backing xenophobic isolationism.

            And I repeat. you tried to brand Sadiq Khan a racist based entirely on lies.

            Remember the time you got two entire threads deleted posting your H0locaust denial crap?

          • Republicofscotland

            You’re a unionist ergo you support Westminster, Westminster is helbent on leaving Europe. They firghtened EU citizens by not guarenteeing their right live in the dis-United Kingdom, which led to many xenophobic incidents of violence and abuse and a Polish man was murdered to boot.

            The SNP and the Scottish government welcomes EU citizens and immigrants. Khan compared the SNP and those who support them to racists.

            You back Khan and Westminster, what does that say about you?

          • fred

            Unlike you I argued against leaving Europe before the referendum.

            Khan didn’t compare the SNP to racists he said nationalism can be as divisive as racism and religious bigotry which it can. That is a fact.

            Your entire argument is based on blatant lies. What does that say about you?

    • Republicofscotland

      On Friday Le Pen refused to attend a summons for police questioning, in the case until after the presidential vote and the parliamentary elections that follow in June. Her party headquarters were raided this week by police.

      Two close staff – her bodyguard and personal assistant – were questioned by investigators.

      The FN has faced three legal issues in the last year, allegations of misuse of European parliament funds an investigation into alleged fraudulent campaign.

      Financing in France by overcharging candidates for election material, and an investigation into whether Le Pen and her father, Jean-Marie, underestimated the value of their personal property in their declaration of interests as MEPs.

      If true, who’d vote for such a dodgy candidate, FN in my opinion have a sleazy history.

    • Alcyone

      Nice one, Norton. Tailor made for Craig and I’m sure he has better credentials. Has he missed his true vocation?

      • Republicofscotland

        Tosh.

        Under Westminster rule and the proposed British bill of rights, things will get worse, RIPA, GCHQ, imprisonment with out charge, narrowing of free-speech, xenophobia (already prevalent) and narrow mind imperial isolationism will be the order of the day.

        You’ll fit right in Norton.

  • Republicofscotland

    “Theresa May has refused to say if Holyrood will make decisions over Scotland’s fisheries and agriculture after Brexit.”

    “Though Tory Secretary of State for Scotland, David Mundell, had earlier offered an “absolute guarantee” that the Scottish Parliament would have more powers when Britain leaves the EU, his boss declined to make the same commitment.”

    “And according to a report in The Times, a senior Whitehall source dismissed vows made by the Vote Leave campaign to Scots during the EU referendum as “another failed Michael Gove promise”.

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/15126926.May_refuses_to_guarantee_devolution_of_fishing_and_farming_powers/

    Of course there are those in here, naive enough to believe that Westminster won’t attempt a full blown power grab after Brexit. It’s the same folk who think Sadiq Khan, couldn’t possibly make a racist comment.

  • Rachel Lever

    Yes, it’s truly shocking and happening at the speed of light.

    You may like my own take on One Democratic country, taking in the events of about 5 years from 2010-ish, with lots of incidental material you may not have seen

    • michael norton

      I agree,
      nobody wants Tim Farron
      or the shit he is hawking,
      there has been a referendum
      and we are all leaving.

    • Republicofscotland

      London’s man in Scotland “Fluffy” Mundell, has to say that, however there would need to then be a hard border been NI and Ireland, very unlikely.

      • michael norton

        RoS I agree with you.

        Any part of the British Isles that wants to remain in the E.U.
        will have to have to be separated by a hard border
        with that part of the British Isles that does not want to be in the E.U.

          • Republicofscotland

            Norton.

            As far as I know, there isn’t a hard border between Ireland a EU country, and NI part of the dis-United Kingdom at present.

            So pray tell, why would there be a hard border between Scotland and England?

          • michael norton

            As far as I know there are no land “hard” borders in the British Isles but there is currently a hard border between Gibralta, which is part of the United Kingdom and Spain.
            As far as I know The Isle of Man is not in the E.U.
            but it is surrounded by sea.
            If part/s of the British Isles leave the European Union, there will have to be hard border between that part and part/s staying in the E.U.

            Quite simple really, it is E.U. law

          • Republicofscotland

            So in other words there’s currently no border (and I knew the answer but waited to see your reply) between a EU nation and the dis-United Kingdom.

            So why are you touting one between Scotland and England? Of course you’re really just a unionist scaremonger, aren’t you?

            “Border markings are comparatively inconspicuous, in common with many international borders in the European Union although, unlike many other EU borders, there are no signposts at crossing points notifying travellers that they are entering a different jurisdiction. While both states are outside the European Union’s Schengen Area, they do share a Common Travel Area, resulting in an essentially open border since 1923.”

            https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_of_Ireland–United_Kingdom_border

            Here you go Michael, so you can’t use that old chestnut, yet again…sigh!

          • michael norton

            You are moving into the realm of self delusion RoS

            the rules are set by you beloved European masters.
            There has to be free movements of people / services / goods within the European Union.
            When part of the British Isles leaves the E.U. there will have to ba a hard b order bewteen the rest of the E.U. and that part that has left.
            So, there will have to be a hard border, between Southern Ireland and Northern Ireland, thems the rules.

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