Tag Archives: Law

Misleading Cases: Reprise

This week on Facebook: It occurs to me in reading the misleading cases of A. P. Herbert that they are as relevant today as at the time they were written. Their context may be somewhat different and certainly society’s views on the freedom the individual are, but the law — far from being less oppressive — insidiously tightens its grip over individual freedoms. Read more of this post

Vulpes alopex

Some four years ago Charles posted on the now defunct My Telegraph website ‘The Boxing Day Hunt – Perfect Entertainment after Christmas Bingeing’ it looked to be an interesting post on a one time favourite rural pastime. Charles wrote:

One of the tedious things about being poor is that one can’t indulge in pastimes like hunting. But one can turn up, as a supporter, and soak up the atmosphere (and maybe a bit of the Port). It really is enormous fun. If you haven’t done it, why not try it this year, on Boxing Day?

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2016 Banned Books Week USA

Sunday on Facebook: It is over two years since I wrote a piece to coincide with Banned Books Week in the USA. Rather than focus on books that are banned — particularly in the USA and the UK — I decided on two examples of books modified to satisfy a modern readership and one book as an allegory for internet censorship, which may pose an even greater threat to personal freedom. Finally making reference to how state censorship grows in proportion to the public’s access to information, the post itself being an indication of why internet freedom to publish material is so important.

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Heaven’s Gate — The Great Plains

This week on Facebook: My attention was drawn to the death of Michael Cimino who died early this month, remembered more for his epic disaster in directing the film Heaven’s Gate than his cinematic successes that led him to it. I am an aficionado of western movies and despite its critics Heavens Gate was no exception. I saw the demise of the Great Plains as being implicit to Cimino’s theme of the Johnson County war. Hollywood has exploited the origins of this despoliation of the Great Plains in films such as Dances With Wolves and Cimino’s Heavens Gate. His allusions in Heaven’s Gate are still valid in the history of the Great Plains which, in less than 200 years, the intervention of man — unwitting or not — has endangered its environmental stability and continues to do so.  Read more of this post

A Chilcot Retort!

This week on Facebook: I have a grandson given to conspiracy theories, he might reasonably have concluded that to hold the Brexit referendum and the release of The Chilcot Report so close together was a deliberate political conspiracy. If it were, any ideas that that they would bury each other in a media feeding frenzy that would quickly be forgotten were completely misplaced. Neither is going away soon and the only certainty here may be that The Chilcot Report will become a document that future historians will continually pour over while the Brexit referendum may simply become a footnote in English history. Read more of this post

Brexit and the UK

This week on Facebook: Not a believer in referendums — at least not those in the UK that turn a simple democracy into a mobile vulgus ochlocracy. I didn’t vote in the one last week on Brexit but in terms of UK democracy, last week’s Brexit referendum vote was as democratic as any electoral or parliamentary vote and more democratic — in terms of the popular vote turnout — than any other post war referendum. Read more of this post

Riots at the games

This week on Facebook: The remarks of a colleague about EUFA 2016 and hooliganism, made me think that supporters of games exhibiting antisocial behaviour is far from being a new phenomenon and probably has many historic roots. Not being a supporter of any particular game and indifferent to EUFA 2016, I nevertheless thought that violence associated with games presented an interesting area of web research. I now know that in contemporary football Ultras promote yahoo behaviour and are encouraged in this by the amount of media attention given to them. However Ultras or their behaviour is certainly not new, it also seems that modern Ultras are pussycats when compared to their historic equivalents at Roman games and Circuses.  Read more of this post

State Surveillance

This week on Facebook: I decided to conclude my research into aspects of the internet and especially those involving social media by focusing on State surveillance. Initially prompted by what I am sure was intended as an innocuous remark about an age of transparencyeach step that I have taken has led to posts that have drawn me deeper into the morass that is the internet and particularly that associated with social media. My research into surveillance by the State reinforces my dystopian view of the future regarding the changing of democracy in the UK.

It seems to me that the nature of the ultimate revolution with which we are now faced is precisely this: That we are in process of developing a whole series of techniques which will enable the controlling oligarchy who have always existed and presumably will always exist to get people to love their servitude. [Aldous Huxley — 1962 U.C. Berkley]  Read more of this post

Social Media as a Safe Space

This week on Facebook: It seems that however careful you are in your use of the internet it’s wrong to assume that you are in a safe space. This is particularly true if you interact with the social media and assume it to be the bastion of free expression that democracy allows. The  free expression and the rule of law assumed by you may not be interpreted the same way by others. Read more of this post

Salving the Conscience?

This week on Facebook I admit to having been duped by a charity. In a fanfare of publicity the charity named The Kids Company, a Ms Camila Batmanghelidjh and, as it turned out, my own government — although there’s nothing new in that — squandered money on anything but charity. It never was The Kid’s Company and it was only the exposé of this charity that focused my attention on the work of charities in the UK. Read more of this post

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