Civil Liberty

Yes, but this is free speech

Advertising agencies mounting a prolonged boycott of GB News are damaging its business, its chief executive has admitted, as he claimed the action represents a threat to free speech.

Angelos Frangopoulos said public debate was at risk because the channel was being put under “commercial pressure” to change its content a year after its launch.

Deciding to associate your commercial speech with – or with not – a TV channel is free speech.

Even if it’s because of an excess of woke twats in the ad agencies it’s still free speech.

Religious censorship

Cineworld has pulled a film chronicling the life of the Prophet Mohammed’s daughter after protestors rallied outside theatres, branding it “blasphemous”.

Hundreds of demonstrators picketed theatres in Bradford, Bolton, Birmingham and Sheffield following screenings of The Lady of Heaven over the weekend.

The British-made epic tells the story of an Iraqi boy who is orphaned when his mother is executed by ISIS militants.

The child is adopted by a woman who comforts the youngster with the story of saintly Fatima, and the viewer is transported back to the seventh century.

Islamic tradition forbids the direct portrayal of religious figures and the film’s director Eli King depicts Fatima as a faceless character, shrouded by a black veil.

But protestors have accused film makers of inaccurately depicting religious history and negatively portraying three of Islam’s most important figures.

Religious censorship by the mob too. It’s been what, 50, perhaps 60 years since we allowed Christians to determine what may be shown in this manner?

Why even try?

Canada’s government is to legislate for a national freeze on handgun ownership that would prevent people buying and selling them anywhere in the country.

“The day this legislation goes into effect it will no longer be possible to buy, sell, transfer or import handguns in Canada,” said the prime minister, Justin Trudeau.

The government will also require long-gun magazines to be permanently altered so they can never hold more than five rounds, and will ban the sale and transfer of large capacity magazines.

“Other than using firearms for sport shooting and hunting, there is no reason anyone in Canada should need guns in their everyday lives,” Trudeau said.

Quite apart from the usual freedom and liberty issues why even bother to try this when you’ve got an 8,891 km land border with a much more liberal gun ownership regime? It’ll be rather more performative than real, no?

This is the point at which we say “Fuck Off” isn’t it?

While free speech permits students and faculty to make arguments that are bold, provocative, or even offensive,” Eisgruber said, “we all have an obligation to exercise that right responsibly. Joshua Katz has failed to do so.”

No, don’t worry about the underlying subject here. Just regard the logic there.

The correct answer to “sure, free speech, but only if it adheres to the current orthodoxy” is “Fuck Off”, isn’t it.

Well, of course

An attempt by SNP ministers to make emergency Covid-19 powers permanent has been branded a “chilling” bid to undermine democracy, despite the initial plans being watered down.

The legislation, which would allow Scottish ministers to wield so-called “Henry VIII powers” in the event of a future emergency, passed its first stage at Holyrood on Thursday after it was backed by the SNP and Greens.

Never let a crisis go to waste. And you’ll be amazed at what gets defined as an emergency when powersniffers get those sorts of powers if one is declared. The most obvious one right now being the climate emergency – we’re not short of folk who would agree with that already.

Idiots damn stupidity

Sheesh:

An overwhelming majority of people in the UK hold the “woke” belief that it is important to be alive to issues of race and social justice, according to a new analysis of public attitudes.

Four in five Britons believe in being attentive to those issues – the definition of “woke” used by the Merriam-Webster dictionary – leading researchers to claim the country is not as divided by culture wars as is often assumed. An overwhelming majority of Conservative voters and those who backed Brexit also said it was important to be attentive to the issues.

The argument isn’t over whether to be woke. It’s over what is the definition of woke that we should be.

Ask the British “Should we be fair to people?” and they’ll say yes, we should be woke. Ask the British if deadnaming someone is an affront to human rights akin to the Holocaust and they’ll tell you to fuck off.

It’s what woke, not whether woke.

We’re seeing that other side, aren’t we?

He said: “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated.”

But Amnesty International, which campaigns for the release of dissidents jailed for speaking out against human rights abuses, expressed its disapproval of Mr Musk’s takeover in a Tweet on Monday night. It said: “Two words: toxic Twitter.”

Amnesty in favour of censorship. Sigh. Eheu fugaces, etc, etc.

This could get interesting

Elon Musk has attacked an “extreme antibody reaction from those who fear free speech” after Brussels regulators threatened to ban Twitter if it violates social media rules in the wake of his $44bn (£35bn) takeover.

Thierry Breton, the European Union’s economics tsar, said that any company operating in the continent must comply with the bloc’s rules, for example on hate speech. Mr Breton said that, if required, the EU will take action to force Twitter to do so.

Mr Musk insisted on Tuesday night that Twitter would abide by laws — but take no further action to limit what users can write.

He said: “By ‘free speech’, I simply mean that which matches the law. I am against censorship that goes far beyond the law. If people want less free speech, they will ask government to pass laws to that effect. Therefore, going beyond the law is contrary to the will of the people.”

What, exactly, does the law – the law, not guidelines – say about hate speech in the EU?

He is, you know, he is

He’s calling for control and censorship:

He said while rising industry standards are helpful, solid regulation is needed to address social media companies’ business models and the way they design their products.

“These companies need to have some other north star other than just making money and increasing market share,” Obama said.

Can’t just have people saying whatever they want. How will Ds get elected if that’s allowed?

Because it is free speech, you fool

It is certainly true that Facebook and Twitter have allowed both official and unofficial sources to pump out reams of disinformation for too long completely uncritically. In the weird utopian world of Silicon Valley, allowing disinformation, incitement of hatred, and celebrations of violence to go unchecked is what passes for supporting free speech, as opposed to undermining democracy.

The moment there’s some definition of disinformation that can and will be banned then no one will be able to question the tractor production statistics. Which is a far greater danger than allowing folk to say untrue things.

Err, yes, difficult

A father used a ghost gun to kill his three daughters. It’s a sign of a growing crisis
Homemade firearms continue to proliferate despite California lawmakers’ efforts to ban them

How do you ban something folk make at home? Going to have a machine tool buyers’ register?

Isn’t Nick Timothy just excellent?

Our very strengths – freedom of speech, property rights, the rule of law – have been exploited.

….

We need tougher laws on the foreign ownership of British assets and companies. We need to put an end to dirty money being laundered in London, and we need to kick China out of our universities and infrastructure.

Most immediately we must act against Russian interests. We should delist Russian companies from Western exchanges and stop trading their debts and bonds. We should force companies to stop servicing Russian companies. And if our laws are being used to frustrate action against Russian oligarchs in London, Parliament should pass an act, notwithstanding those laws, freezing the assets of named oligarchs and their families, and expelling them from the country.

So we should stop having our very strengths.

What’s the damn point of that?

Have we declared war?

No, have *we* declared war?

Michael Gove calls for seizure of pro-Kremlin oligarchs’ lavish UK homes
The Housing Secretary used a specially-convened Cabinet meeting on Thursday to insist that more action was needed

Then they’re not enemy aliens and we don’t get to steal their stuff then, do we?

Sure, the rule of law is, often enough, a casualty of war. But we’d better damn well be at war before we throw away that protection against our own rulers.

Way to go, eh?

Rape victims ‘more traumatised by inadequate trials’ than original attack
Justice Secretary considers specialist courts to restore confidence as watchdogs warn criminal justice system is ‘not fit for purpose’

So a rape is now to be considered no worse than a trial? So much for that insistence that rape is truly horrific then, eh?

And of course the “specialist courts” are to be those which convict any male walking into them, aren’t they?