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phantom    [30538.   Posted 18-Dec-2014 Thu 04:49]
  Ah, the joys of parliamentary English.

I assumed `laid before parliament` meant that parliamentary approval was sought/needed.

That said it seems merely to be a flashy term used to describe that something has been published.
http://www.parliament.uk/site-information/glossary/laid-or-laying-before-parliament/

So Clegg did not get to vote on it. Neither did anyone else. That said, he`s still the party leader in a coalition. He could have blocked this, had he wanted to.

Meanwhile I doubt this is to do with William Hague.
He may be `first secretary of state`, but there are plenty other secretaries of state.
My guess is that giving him that position is merely a way of keeping him in the cabinet, albeit without portfolio.

In this case the closest match would most likely be:
Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.
The other two candidates I guess would be Department of Justice (Chris Grayling) and the Home Office (Theresa May).

sergio    [30537.   Posted 18-Dec-2014 Thu 03:31]
  http://legislation.data.gov.uk/cy/uksi/2014/2916/made/data.htm?wrap=true
The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014

Made

4th November 2014

Laid before Parliament

6th November 2014

Coming into force

1st December 2014

These Regulations are made by the Secretary of State in exercise of the powers conferred by section 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972(1).

The Secretary of State is a Minister designated for the purposes of that section in relation to information society services (2).


https://www.gov.uk/government/ministers/first-secretary-of-state
The Rt Hon William Hague MP

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30536.   Posted 17-Dec-2014 Wed 16:56]
  phantom

Here is the Hansard proceedings. I wonder if `negative` means that it didn`t get voted on. A positive one did have a resolution.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201415/minutes/141107/ldordpap.htm

phantom    [30535.   Posted 17-Dec-2014 Wed 15:59]
  Well, the way I see it, even if a regulation doesn`t go through parliament, the coalition parties who form the government bear joint responsibility.
After all, if one of the two coalition partners refuses to back it, it cannot go ahead.

In this case, we saw it get rushed through parliament.
So they cannot even claim it to be a mere cabinet stitch up.
they forced it through the parliamentary process as though it were an emergency law. Everyone waving it through.

But I did not hear a single protesting LibDem voice.
Where were those LibDems if they were so opposed to this?
Nowhere.

Now that it`s passed, one or two of the morons are asking for it to be repealed. (Fat chance!)
and now Clegg comes out announcing his opposition to a law the government he`s a part of has just passed!

It`s absolutely risible.

What is the man claiming?
`I didn`t know. I`m only Deputy Prime Minister.`
Is that it?

I may misunderstand this, but I believe parliament voted on this. However, it simply did not debate it.
If that is so, I`d love to know which way Clegg voted.

If anyone knows how to find out, please let me know.
I`ve tried `they work for you`, but can`t make sense of it.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30534.   Posted 17-Dec-2014 Wed 10:51]
  Phantom

It would be interesting to know what level of parliamentary interaction there is for these ministerial decrees. It would also be interesting to know which minster has been pushing through this undemocractic censorship. How can these people pass a new law that kills an entire industry without even the decency to give it a decent mention it in parliament.

This is the sort of democracy you get in the likes of China, Burma and Thailand

phantom    [30533.   Posted 17-Dec-2014 Wed 10:21]
  Well, I just tried finding out, but frankly don`t understand how `they work for you` works on that front.

But I`d still like to know:
Which way did Clegg vote then?

Are we saying he voted for something (I`d assume he voted for it as a cabinet member) which he did not properly understand?
If that`s the case, isn`t he a moron?

I see Clegg`s move as pure electioneering.

This is the man who gave up on the Great Repeal Act - a policy to which his coalition partners had agreed in the coalition talks.

So this is the politician who most likely should have been overseeing the repeal of the DPA, instead he`s part of a government which extends it.

And now he comes out and declares he`s against this extension?

Come on! The man is taking us for mugs.


Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30532.   Posted 17-Dec-2014 Wed 03:10]
  phantom

There is a chance that Clegg did not realise what it meant. It was not debated in parliament, just nodded through.

Before the Face-Sitting protest then it was probably justified as applying BBFC rules to online video. And before the protest I bet few realised that the BBFC/CPS rules were so naff and impinging on people`s sexuality.

phantom    [30531.   Posted 16-Dec-2014 Tue 18:51]
  re: Nick Clegg champions people`s `exotic` sexual kicks...

Hang on. Clegg is speaking out against the law?

He is doing so now? Now that it is passed?
Where was he while it was going through parliament?
This is a coalition government. He was part of the government which passed this.
Now he is honestly trying to make out it had nothing to do with him?

How can any minister come out to oppose a law his government has passed, - after it is passed?

Clegg kept shtum when his criticism could have mattered.
He speaks up now once the law is on the statutes.

The man is pure slime.

phantom    [30530.   Posted 15-Dec-2014 Mon 07:27]
  you might like this one:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-30432645

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/rugbyunion/international/wales/11286232/Welsh-rugby-chiefs-urged-to-ban-Tom-Jones-Delilah-before-matches-at-Millennium-Stadium.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-30441537

BUT:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-30445260

No, no. He doesn`t want it banned at all...

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30529.   Posted 14-Dec-2014 Sun 14:26]
  Thanks Braintree, i will add an update.

rifdw/phantom

I presume you are referring to the work described here

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet/11284538/Soon-the-internet-will-be-impossible-to-control.html

Sounds interesting

braintree    [30528.   Posted 13-Dec-2014 Sat 15:32]
  I can confirm that the site mentioned on todays new pages is not being blocked by Virgin Media - maybe it was but its not today

phantom    [30527.   Posted 13-Dec-2014 Sat 08:34]
  rifdw [30526]

Hi ridfw,
I`m not sure i share your optimism in the short term.
In the longterm, I`ve always contended that censorship is a completely pointless exercise, doomed to failure.
But mass-surveillance technologies do seem to be emerging for the web.
and with the government bringing GCHQ on board to monitor the web on child porn, the road seems to be being paved to one day have GCHQ monitor for other online `offences` too.
With Britain in a pincer between the political right and left, both agreeing that they want censorship and will achieve it by any means, there seems very little reason for optimism right now.
Personally, I have come to the conclusion that this country has been lost for a generation. Liberal principles are as good as dead right now. Authoritarianism is on the rise.

rifdw    [30526.   Posted 13-Dec-2014 Sat 01:36]
  Don`t worry peeps, actions such as these further restrictions on adult freedoms will come to nothing
These attempts to control will simply drive the tech gurus to lock down the web so as no one will be able to manipulate it
Already there are developments which will mean isps will be by passed completely. The web s unstoppable Dont be fooled by the constant propaganda

sergio    [30525.   Posted 12-Dec-2014 Fri 16:41]
  Oh dear, it`s about spanking (or so the sensational media `sound bite` it as). Really, a fetish mask and that`s the level of `conversation`?

sergio    [30524.   Posted 11-Dec-2014 Thu 07:20]
  Radio 4 Today (11/12/2014) had some bit from a ceop operative - she, to my mind, came over as just so arrogant. It`s just another loophole they have to fill. What next? The illegal sniffing of children and their accoutrements. It`s a loophole that shit from nappies used for sexual purposes is still legal.

phantom    [30523.   Posted 11-Dec-2014 Thu 06:17]
  sergio [30522]

I see, you too have been enjoying the speech by our great, glorious leader, Kim Jong-Dave.

To be honest I`m a little perplexed about the `new offence` he announced of approaching a child sexually by phone, internet, etc.
Surely that falls under the term of grooming and already illegal.
I can only imagine it`s another one of those Blairesque duplications, whereby you make something illegal which already is, in order to shine in the daily Mail.

But what did seem concerning was the sheer raft of technology which seems to be emerging.

Keeping in mind that most adult content online is now illegal, we just saw Cameron giving us a glimpse of the sheer arsenal which will eventually deployed in blocking it.

Because there can be little ground that once the tools have been perfected in fighting child porn, they will be deployed against porn.

And remember, ATVOD is now the official UK online porn gatekeeper.
Given that even those foreign producers who have only perfectly regular porn online are breaking the law by not paying ATVOD a regulatory fee, it is only a matter of time until the sort of measures Cameron announced today will be used against the wider public and adult pornography.

As usual child pornography is being used as a the testing ground.
Once the legislative framework and enforcement techniques are established, they are soon widened into more mainstream, adult areas.

sergio    [30522.   Posted 11-Dec-2014 Thu 02:27]
  So, next year it`s going to be illegal to say to children `penis into vagina`...

phantom    [30521.   Posted 6-Dec-2014 Sat 17:14]
  Here`s an interesting thought.

The way things are currently set up anything on the net is subject to our courts.
Thus the ATVOD changes have really not just ruled what UK producers make illegal. Far more they have made all material on the net which does not comply with BBFC standards illegal. It is just that they cannot touch the foreign porn producers.

But that begs the question, how much of current worldwide online pornography is now deemed illegal due to ATVOD?

We all know that vast amounts of international porn would not pass the BBFC as they might contain even a snippet lasting seconds of something the BBFC does not allow.

Just how much of the world`s porn do we believe the UK has currently ruled illegal in this grandiose scheme?

Perhaps the campaigners opposing these laws would be best served sending letters to foreign governments asking them what they think about Mr Cameron implying that they are effectively harbouring `UK porn criminals`.

phantom    [30520.   Posted 6-Dec-2014 Sat 11:30]
  Sergio,
What chance that Blossfeldt photographed some kids as part of his body of work and that recently somebody complained about it?

The inability by some to comprehend that some art photographers capture the human form in all its guises seems to be pretty run of the mill these days.

Didn`t Elton John run into that very problem with some art photography he owned? I seem to recall a story on here once.

sergio    [30519.   Posted 6-Dec-2014 Sat 05:58]
  WTF? I was searching on google for "Karl Blossfeldt. The Complete Published Work" and at the end of the results I found this -

`Suspected child abuse content has been removed from this page. Report child abuse content. `

What?

goatboy    [30518.   Posted 5-Dec-2014 Fri 16:20]
  Mark Kermode has put up a video ranting about Warner Bros refusal to release the uncut version of The Devils. Interesting to see if that goes anywhere.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBZ5bl8sYY4

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30517.   Posted 5-Dec-2014 Fri 00:47]
  re: The Truth about the Porn Law Changes...

All the puffed up censors are loving it aren`t they.

I thought it was interesting that the BBFC acknowledged that the government/police/CPS were writing their censorship rules.

The BBFC need to update their catchprhrase: "Ratings you trust...except for R18s, which are absolute Politically Correct/police censorship bollox"

phantom    [30516.   Posted 4-Dec-2014 Thu 21:06]
  re: The Truth about the Porn Law Changes...

And the prize for best load of corporate whoring on matters of ATVOD goes to Murray Perkins of the BBFC:

"The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations will ensure that UK on-demand content is consistent with legally available pornography off-line, benefiting from the application of UK law and the expert legal and medical advice which informs BBFC decisions."

So the censored are in fact not censored at all. Far more, they are permitted to benefit from the application of UK law! Fantastic!

phantom    [30515.   Posted 3-Dec-2014 Wed 20:42]
  The worrying fact behind the entire ATVOD story is that it makes no sense to persecute UK producers, as they are simply responsible for too small a part of the available pornography online for it too make any serious impact on the supply side of pornography on the UK internet – UNLESS – there is an ulterior motive behind the action.

Frankly, it cannot be that one has decided to rid the net of UK content alone. It serves no purpose.

But then ATVOD has been running for seven years now. Clearly the powers behind this are willing to play a very long game. Long enough to build a case over seven years and running....

My prediction is this. What now will follow will be a one or two year pause.
In this time one will prosecute and fine anything that moves via ATVOD.
The purpose of this is to demonstrate readiness to enforce the law.

Then, having established a track record of enforcement, one will then complain about how foreign material is undermining efforts to enforce the clearly expressed will of parliament to ban non BBFC compatible material and .protect children from seeing breasts.
In short; the purpose of this futile law is to enable complaint by ATVOD about its futility.
The law commits parliament to official BBFC standards online. Circumvention of parliament`s firm commitment by foreign sites then becomes a question of sovereignty. Parliament cannot be seen to lose.

This will then be the argument forwarded to move on blocking foreign sites. I strongly suspect that Cameron`s filter is more than likely the prototype for that very operation.

So expect a few high profile fines and some court cases in the next one or two years.
For only if the law is actively enforced will one be able to complain that foreign sites alone are circumventing it.
Then will follow a concerted campaign. Tabloid headlines: `My son died because of US porn` and the likes. One or two champion MPs like previously Messrs Salter and Lepper, bewailing the state of affairs. Followed by `responsible and proportionate action` by whatever government is in place.

Cameron`s filter will then be switched on for all (possibly via isp access, with counter measures for circumvention in place and draconian fines for attempted circumvention) and form the basis for the Great Firewall of Britain.

Personally, I firmly believe that recent events make the above inevitable.
Trying to rid the world of UK material alone serves no purpose.
So the purpose must be something else.
Enforcing a strict ban on UK material only makes sense if the goal is to move on foreign material.
But one cannot move on foreign material if one has shown no effort to kill one`s own production.
I cannot see any other reasoning behind this.

phantom    [30514.   Posted 2-Dec-2014 Tue 17:09]
  Yes, but we just had the recent pronouncement that vloggers must mention whether they`re sponsored to push a product. So yes, anyone working through youtube is feeling the cold grip of UK regulation clamping down also. There is not a soul who believes the sponsorship comment was the last edict to be issued regarding youtube clips.
One is moving slowly and stealthily. You tube clips will get clamped down on soon enough with more do`s and dont`s.

Personally I feel things are looking very bleak for the UK right now.
The problem is the political consensus by the establishment to crush online expression which is not approved.

I mean, not enough for ATVOD to want to be paid and to crush producers.
(i.e. those wanting to exercise the negative right of freedom of expression are actually being forced to pay for the positive right of not being offended for those who oppose them.)

But ATVOD even insist on people needing to notify them in advance before starting what they define as an on demand program service.

That`s as close to licensing of the net as you can come.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30513.   Posted 2-Dec-2014 Tue 17:01]
  Phantom

Well all with video, except YouTube that was luckily explicitly excluded in the EU law

phantom    [30512.   Posted 2-Dec-2014 Tue 14:16]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30511]

..."from all ATVOD qualifying websites"...

`ATVOD qualifying websites` are effectively all UK sites, no?


Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30511.   Posted 2-Dec-2014 Tue 00:54]
  Phantom

I have just noted that ATVOD have added a new rule 14, not primarily about R18. ATVOD will ban any video material that is banned by the BBFC from all ATVOD qualifying websites (not just adult ones), and furthermore for unclassified material, take their own view on what the BBFC would ban.

ATVOD is the new internet BBFC

...more to follow

phantom    [30510.   Posted 1-Dec-2014 Mon 13:50]
  Dave, you called it right. It`s armageddon.
UK sites have closed left right and centre.

By the look of it it`s pretty much a purge. Folks are running for the hills.

Sad to say, but the bad guys have won.
After years of trying they`ve finally got their BBFC standard on UK internet sites.

Worth remembering it was a Tory- LibDem coalition that did it. That, after the Labour DPA. Some choice...

phantom    [30509.   Posted 28-Nov-2014 Fri 14:13]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30508]
Jack Straw and the Mail.
What a wonderful combination, Dave.
The man who hamstrung the right to silence writing for a certain newspaper. What could produce more common sense?

Now first off, Jacky boy, as someone who knows his classics, I know that Nemesis was a Goddess, not a God, you moron.

Ah, and Mark Snowden is a posturing hypocrite. Even the `terrorists` friend`.

Meanwhile, internet companies are merely hiding behind `libertarian nonsense`.

Well, here`s what I think of Jacky.
While he was home secretary Jack`s glasses got smaller and smaller as he sought to appear more authoritarian.
So to hear a man who models his looks on Himmler, because he thinks it makes him look stern, talk of `liberal nonsense`... Well, what can I say... sometimes a pictures just says so much more.

Compare please.
Earlier Straw:
http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/73419000/jpg/_73419765_000074234-1.jpg
Later `stern, authoritarian` Straw:
http://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/british-foreign-secretary-jack-straw-adjusts-his-glasses-news-photo/2811230
And a certain German:
http://wpmedia.news.nationalpost.com/2014/01/heinrich-himmler-salute.jpg?w=940

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30508.   Posted 28-Nov-2014 Fri 09:36]
  Jack Straw steps into the fray of blaming Facebook and Snowden for... well everything

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2852535/Facebook-s-arrogance-Snowden-s-hypocrisy-risk-ex-Home-Secretary-devastating-attack-internet-giants-traitor-beloved-chattering-class.html

It is always a bit disconcerting when all the big guns start firing at the same time...Is something nasty in the offing?



Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30507.   Posted 28-Nov-2014 Fri 06:17]
  The War on Facebook

This all seems a little too unbelievable. How can a website be expected to monitor messages. Automated filtering, censorship etc is inevitably characterised by being crap. It would take some very AI systems to actually get a good handle on conversations which are hardly likely to be open and clear. I would suspect that dangerous conversations would be shrouded in jargon, euphemism and allusions where only participants would know the context. Surely this is what the security services should be expert at, not Facebook.

phantom    [30506.   Posted 27-Nov-2014 Thu 16:12]
  re: The war on Facebook

Yes, I love this facebook story.
Nothing is quite as magnificent as Malcolm Rifkind pontificating on the BBC about how `that American internet company` is failing in its responsibilities.

We spend billions on GCHQ. They everlastingly demand new powers in order `to keep us safe`. And when it turns out it was all rubbish and they are no more able to keep us safe than Postman Pat, what do they do? - It was all Facebook`s fault!
Why of course it was...

Meanwhile the police is handing out leaflets to commuters telling them to run and hide if they hear gunfire.
And why is that?
Well, Theresa May and GCHQ want more powers. In order to keep us safe again. So they stir up a little fear to further their aims.

Once upon a time, the UK government put up posters telling folks to `keep calm and carry on`. It was the blitz. Bombs were raining down on London. Literally. Meanwhile today they`re distributing leaflets telling us, `Panic! Now!` The last bomb went off seven (correction: nine!) years ago.

But at least we now know what Britons are made of these days.
If the tough get going, the British now run away and hide...

DarkAngel5    [30505.   Posted 27-Nov-2014 Thu 11:05]
  Test message, just ignore :-)

phantom    [30504.   Posted 27-Nov-2014 Thu 07:30]
  Another piece of little known censorship.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-30209890

More power to John O`Farrell`s elbow, say I.

phantom    [30503.   Posted 26-Nov-2014 Wed 18:00]
  So, the authorities like to censor people.
But, pray, who gets to censor the authorities?

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/police-leaflets-tell-commuters-to-run-hide-and-tell-in-event-of-mumbaistyle-terror-attack-9884019.html

Therumbler    [30502.   Posted 26-Nov-2014 Wed 15:57]
  http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/business-papers/lords/lords-divisions/

Howe`s amendment lost roughly 2-1.

I see that less than a quarter of the members bothered to show up. I don`t know if that`s a good thing or not.

phantom    [30501.   Posted 25-Nov-2014 Tue 19:47]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) {30499}

I agree with you that Labour are definitely driving away a great many working class men. I`ve seen it first hand with people I know.

But what I was disputing was that Labour were sensitive to that issue.

Miliband foamed because the white van man headline gave his lot a bad press on a day he was hoping for the Tories to suffer bad headlines.

But it is clear that he doesn`t comprehend the problem at heart or he`d start holding public speeches telling Dianne Abbott and the Eagle sisters that they cannot have everything they want, and that it is only right that they cannot. But he doesn`t. :)

Yes, I think there is a large section of the libertarian vote slushing around out there, looking for a home.
The LibDems turned out to be a damp squib. (What happened to that Great Repeal Act, Mr Clegg?)

The anti-establishment rhetoric of UKIP seems now to be attracting some of that vote, but possibly mistakenly so. With quite a number of old guard Tories staffing the ranks of UKIP, it`s hard to see them as the libertarian answer to the established politics of old.

Meanwhile, the established parties have made their home in `identity-politics`, which simply define society as a collection of `minority` groups. The aim is to simply satisfy these groups, devoid of any overarching principle.
Oddly, women are deemed such a minority group. Men of course are not. Especially not white van men who read the sun and have an England flag out the window. Politically that group does not exist.

Meanwhile, identity politics allows for groups to be traded off against each other. Gays score higher than Catholics, of course. And so on...

Thus, the working class no longer find their cause represented by Labour. Instead Labour stands for whatever `identities` it feels able to bond together into a coalition.
Foremost among those identities reign the `wimmin`. This group is deemed considerably more important to their overall goals than any old fashioned concepts of socialism or social justice.
In fact it is more than likely their primary political interest as a party right now.
As said, take a look at every single one of their female MPs.
It is clear that to the likes of those female MPs feminism ranks highest above all their political views.

With that staff base in the parliamentary group it is clear that ditching militant feminism is impossible for Labour, even if the leadership wanted to do so.
If once they were known as the `loony left`, then now they clearly have become the `loony feminists`.

Oddly however, the Tories - terrified at missing a trick - are not far behind. They are keen to shadow Labour in most of what they do, lest Labour gain an advantage. And vice versa.

The dilemma for the likes of us is that civil liberties are not a worthwhile minority identified by the established parties in their hunt for votes. Thus they are of no consequence.
Frankly, I suspect that is most likely the same with UKIP.

Meanwhile just look at the unanimous verdict by all present on BBC`s Questions Time about the supposed righteousness of Theresa May`s banning that pickup artist from entering the UK recently.
Freedom of expression doesn`t even figure on the political radar these days.

It`s something left to conspiracy theorists or terrorist sympathisers. Folks like us and Shami Chakrabarti.
that`s what we`re deemed by now. The loony fringe.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30500.   Posted 25-Nov-2014 Tue 04:12]
  Sergio,

I always wonder if the parents really want their kids to grow up in a non-sexualised world and suddenly find at the age of 18 that being sexy is of key importance to life.

Maybe the desexualisation glasses need the ability to peer over the top whenever necessary.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30499.   Posted 25-Nov-2014 Tue 03:26]
  Phantom,

I amused myself for a whiling trying to think of Labour women who are not feminist nutjobs, and you are absolutely right, I couldn`t think of one.

I agree entirely that there is no hope of any change, but surely the middle class feminist campaigning IS causing them to lose votes from working class men. And the concern must be there, hence, Miliband`s outburst at the white van man tweet.

Just because it will have no effect, doesn`t make it not worthwhile to pick at a sensitive spot.

I think there is a general dissatisfied rump of the electorate, that will support whatever is the best third party cause at the time. Maybe UKIP at the moment but maybe greens another time or even a return to the libdems (after they have spent some time on the naughty step). Of course it is much easier in Wales and Scotland to vote against the LabCon party via the nationalist parties

phantom    [30498.   Posted 24-Nov-2014 Mon 19:01]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) {30496}

"Perhaps it is worth alluding to a middle class feminist campaign that seeks to ban working men`s pleasures in life. I think Labour may be sensitive about this observation at the moment."

How so, Dave?
You mean because they might feel threatened by UKIP?
I think it would take a great deal more than UKIP to change Labour`s mind on any `middle class feminist campaign`.
After all, who is Labour`s deputy leader? Harriet Harman.
And can you think of any female Labour MP who isn`t a feminist nutbag?
Name one. Just one.

sergio    [30497.   Posted 24-Nov-2014 Mon 05:07]
  I am going to start a kickstarter campaign to invent desexualisation glasses.
These glasses put a discrete black covering over anything sexual. These are a godsend for busy parents who wish to have there little ones protected from anything sexual.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30496.   Posted 23-Nov-2014 Sun 01:14]
  Re Tesco `thinking of the children`

Perhaps it is worth alluding to a middle class feminist campaign that seeks to ban working men`s pleasures in life. I think Labour may be sensitive about this observation at the moment.

Sabreman64    [30495.   Posted 22-Nov-2014 Sat 02:39]
  http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/nov/22/tesco-tabloid-newspapers-display-protect-children-sexualised-images-page-3

WON`T SOMEONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN!?

Another victory for the miserable feminist lobby. They seem to be the modern day equivalent of Mary Whitehouse. And `Call me Dave` Cameron will be pleased with this news. Why don`t we just become a Sharia state now and ban all public display of female bare skin?

phantom    [30494.   Posted 19-Nov-2014 Wed 16:03]
  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-30119100

If proof were needed just how vibrant freedom of expression in Britain is today, the story above surely shows us to be an open-minded, liberal utopia. Surely nobody else is as free as us.

Foremost of all in this story rank:
Yvette Cooper (Lab), Lynne Featherstone (LibDem) and Theresa May (Con)

Should the established parties be wondering why they`re struggling to gain traction among the British public, that odd unanimity on a petty subject like this might just give them a pointer.

Effectively, if you are a foreign national and you want to come to Britain, you better have views which are pre-approved by the political elite.
If not, then you`re not permitted.

Any similarity to cold war eastern Europe is, of course, purely coincidental.

Oh and if you don`t like what someone is saying, start a petition.
If there turn out to be enough of you, you can silence that person.
It`s not liberal democracy. It`s not Stalinism. It`s no doubt what Blair called `the third way`.

Can`t we just sink this island and start over?

phantom    [30493.   Posted 18-Nov-2014 Tue 16:56]
  Yep, I too think Cameron wants to bang the drum about this censorial nonsense in the run up to the election.
As I`ve said before, the pollsters have identified female voters as the key constituent of this election.
The advice both major parties are receiving is that creating more censorship appeals to this demographic.
Thus, both parties now do not only have a desire to censor. No, now they think they have a need to censor.
They truly believe that he who is more prohibitive will be preferred in the elections.
Personally I believe that view is a nonsense.
Not only is it the pursuit of votes at the cost of any adherence to principle, I also believe it is plain wrong.
I do not believe that the female vote is that much more censorious than the male.
If I`m right then the policies being pursued here are not only bad in principle, but they are not even populist.
In short; they`re just pointless.
But given the state of British politics and the absence of any meaningful ideas on either side, this is the sort of lunacy politicians cling to these days.

If in doubt, just look at Lynne Featherstone. You could not make it up.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30492.   Posted 18-Nov-2014 Tue 06:47]
  Phantom

It is a bit unfair on websites. We`ve only just notice the new law 2 weeks after it was passed leaving just 2 weeks for webmasters to censor their websites.

It rather suggest that Cameron is keen to bang on about this during the run up to the election.

Coincidently I got a circular emall from Cameron yesterday claiming:

"we will carry on backing businesses by scrapping red tape, cutting taxes - and continuing to invest in the infrastructure that is vital to create jobs and enable Britain to compete successfully in the global race".

Well if Cameron considers this new law as `backing businesses` and `scrapping red tape` then Britain is doooomed.

phantom    [30491.   Posted 17-Nov-2014 Mon 14:34]
  The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014

"These Regulations may be cited as the Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014.

Laid before Parliament on 6th November 2014

Coming into force on 1st December 2014."

Interesting dates.
Are they per chance in a hurry?

phantom    [30490.   Posted 16-Nov-2014 Sun 08:49]
  Ah yes, Benny Hill...
Terrible what he got away with. Such a bad man.
Or maybe all the outrage is just pretentious puffery.

`Alternative comedy` has a lot to answer for when it comes to the rise of political correctness in this country.

In essence much of the outrage at the `old fashioned comics` was used as a tool by the new `alternative` comics to get up the ladder faster than would have ordinarily been the case.

The careers of the likes of Ben Elton, Jo Brand, Alexi Sayle etc got a leg up much earlier than would have been traditionally the case, because the existing hierarchy in comedy was effectively decapitated.
New comics were needed, because the old ones were suddenly deemed unacceptable, - rather tellingly, - by the new comics.

Thus, much of the `outrage` was generated by the newcomers who wanted those at the top to move over - to make way for them. i.e. self interest. It had in fact nothing to do with comedic material.
Nobody invented a `new` form of comedy.
This was the very reason why some of the old hands were rather bitter at how they were being disposed of.

Meanwhile the cutting edge alternative rebels have long since shown their colours. Ben Elton works with Andrew Lloyd Webber. And Jo Brand presents for the Great British Bake Off. So proper anti-establishment rebels. Not merely in it for the money at all.
Right on. Up the Revolution!

And as for Benny. He was a comic genius. Let them say about him what they like. As it turned out, Charlie Chaplin had all his videos. Rumour has it, Charlie knew a thing or two about comedy...

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30489.   Posted 16-Nov-2014 Sun 00:40]
  Thanks Phantom

I enjoyed `it was alright in the 70s` on channel 4.

It was fun watching the modern commentators feign shock at some of the very unPC 70`s programming such as Benny Hill.

Somehow the argument is that of pure morality when perhaps there is a more important economic aspect. It may have been shocking but at least people had the freedom get on with the job of making money.

Now everything is banned on grounds of safety/political correctness/health/child protection we seem to have the problem of a stagnating and declining economy

phantom    [30488.   Posted 15-Nov-2014 Sat 17:49]
  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-30052071

phantom    [30487.   Posted 13-Nov-2014 Thu 15:25]
  re: A watershed for the internet...Mediawatch-UK will be pleased...

Actually might that not prove a stumbling block for those advocating prohibition of nigh on everything?
After all, if you produce a `watershed`, silly as the concept may be, then you cannot advocate the total prohibition of content in order to `save the children` from seeing something that`s not meant for their eyes.

phantom    [30486.   Posted 11-Nov-2014 Tue 16:30]
  braintree [30485]
Well, it`s the age of the phantom menace. :)
The dangers which these days occupy the media and politics are hypothetical dangers.
So the simple fact that a single man might be a paedophile means that single men shouldn`t be seen in parks.
In just that same way we all might be terrorists. Which is why the government these days effectively treats us as such.
And yes, porn of course might harm somebody. So yes, it must be banned. Because it might.
A guy with a camera in London. Well, clearly that might be a terrorist staking out new targets.
T-shirts or gollywogs must be taken out of windows, because they might just offend someone.

Earlier this evening on newsnight they had that obnoxious guy `Dapper Laughs` on. Again here is a guy who might be doing harm, we`re told. Thus he must be taken off the air.
Not because he`s unfunny (which is defintiely is). No, because he`s might be encouraging misogyny and sexual violence - by saying something.

Bad taste, offence, imagery, an Asian guy with a beard in possession of a map of the London Underground, or a single man in a park: all might lead to something.
So all are suspect. All are to be investigated, snooped on, curbed, crushed, controlled.

We`re a nation ruled by fear of what might happen. A timid little island, run by those who are simultaneously the most fearful as well as the most frightful.

If Hitler`s forces were poised across the Channel today, we`d not fight back. We`d arrest someone and pass another law...

braintree    [30485.   Posted 10-Nov-2014 Mon 14:56]
  Does that mean if 2 men or 2 women go into the park they are allowed . This stupid rule seems to forget there are a good many paedophiles who are parents . I doubt this would stand up in a court of law . Someone needs to challenge it . We`re not in a Communist country yet - not officially anyway . Although in some ways we`ve already gone beyond some of Orwells predictions

Therumbler    [30484.   Posted 9-Nov-2014 Sun 16:42]
  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/man-banned-from-entering-park-on-his-own-because-of-paedophile-fears-9849602.html

"A man has been barred from entering a park because of a policy banning single men or women without children from visiting the attraction in case they are paedophiles.

...

Alistair Mead, the managing director of the park, was quoted in the local paper saying that he thought the policy was sensible and if he conducted a straw poll customers would back the decision.

"We have done our research and in line with all other parks we don`t let single men or women in." "

A demonstration of some really flawed thinking.

phantom    [30483.   Posted 5-Nov-2014 Wed 07:59]
  Harvey {30482}

"as for the review; it would be done by MoJ. The main objective would be to chack whether the regulatory impact was in line with expectations."

Is that the same MoJ which is currently proposing an extension of the very same statute? :)
I`m assuming it`s the MoJ. I guess it could be the Home Office, but I guess you get the point.

Harvey    [30482.   Posted 5-Nov-2014 Wed 06:34]
  phantom,

as for consultaion; no avenues for challenge as the consultation did allow all views to be put.

as for OPA; There were 3 options; to extent the existing OPA offence to inlude possession, to create a new offence within the OPA or to create a new stand alone offence (the fourth option was to do nothing) The choice of a stand alone offence was made because government said that would be the best and have least regulatory impact.

as for the review; it would be done by MoJ. The main objective would be to chack whether the regulatory impact was in line with expectations.

phantom    [30481.   Posted 4-Nov-2014 Tue 17:01]
  Harvey {30477}

"There was a consultation on the government`s prposals and a Regulatory Impact Assesment.
Both emphaised the minimal nature, in cost, in added workload for the police and courts and interference with legit activities. This was all based on the notion that what would be made criminal to possess was, broadly, no more that what was already illegal to publish under the OPA. It was that analysis which led to the estimate of 30 or so cases per year."

As for the consultation. Yes, a completely flawed affair. But is there any legal traction on that?

As for the OPA: comparing anything to the OPA is to compare something to the length of a piece of string. So they`re most likely on safe ground there. I can`t see how one could find them to be in the wrong.
Given the widening discrepancy between the international standard and what the OPA will allow, it`s all rather prehistoric.

"The fact of over a thousand cases per year is evidence that the estimate was wrong and therefore the regulatory impact is far greater than was proposed."

Yes, but unlike ECHR proportionality the impact assessment can, as you have already pointed out, be side-stepped by stating, the situation was simply worse than expected. One can`t really see whether it is possible to get any traction in this area.

"Part of the implementation was to establish a process of review of how the law was working in practice. Where is that review and what is the assessment of how the law is working?"

A very good point.
But who would do the assessing? What would be the parameters? If it`s just a committee headed by the likes of Harriet Harman and Fiona MacTaggart, I think we know the outcome already, don`t we?

When it comes to consultation, etc, there was of course a deeply flawed passage through parliament. Parliamentary select committees were lied to, being told that amendments would be introduced to address their concerns - in order to get them to recommend the law to the house. But the amendments were never produced.
So procedure (and the law) was breached.
But whether this legere de main would actually count for anything in a judicial review I do not know.

Also there was the retrospective rapid evidence assessment, conducted by someone who had already responded favourably in consultation, I believe.

To any reasonably minded person this was a stitch up. But reasonably minded people and the law seem to have very little to do with each other.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30480.   Posted 4-Nov-2014 Tue 16:46]
  Therumbler

There was vote on the commission of a prostitution law review but MacTaggart`s clauses 6 & 7 were dropped without being voted on

Therumbler    [30479.   Posted 4-Nov-2014 Tue 16:20]
  Was the amendment withdrawn or voted down?

freeworld    [30478.   Posted 4-Nov-2014 Tue 13:01]
  Amendment New clause 6, added by the fanatics to the Modern slavery bill, their attempt to transplant the "Swedish model" (and Ulster one) on prostitution into England and Wales by criminalizing everyone who "pays for sex" (and totally decriminalize sellers) fell at today`s third reading in the commons. Kudos to Labour`s John McDonnell and the Tory former home office minister Crispin Blunt, who both spoke passionately against the amendment. Mr McDonnell has done a lot of hard lobbying work with MPs on this issue, to try to counter the shrill McTaggartite polemic (he had the good fortune of sitting next to fragrant Fiona during the debate).

I don`t know if the fanatics might make another attempt with the amendment in the Lords, but the government doesn`t seem to want it in this bill - a highly misleading attempt to link all paying for sex with "slavery" and "trafficking". Of course there are laws enough already to tackle that exploitative side of prostitution - including prosecuting the clients. What this amendment would do is make illegal paying for sex which is totally non exploitative and completely consensual.

I haven`t been able to check properly yet, but I think an attempt moved by Labour`s shadow minister, the familiar David Hanson, to put an amendment in the bill - clause 22 - to commit the government to a compulsory review of the issue of prostitution, within 6 months of the present bill becoming law, also failed to make it into the bill.

David Hanson on what 22 would do -

"The review would investigate the extent to which current legislation governing prostitution in England and Wales acts as an effective deterrent to demand for sexual services from exploited persons. It would look at the extent to which current legislation governing prostitution in England and Wales enables effective enforcement action against trafficking people and sexual exploitation, and at the very points made by my hon. Friend the Member for Slough (McTaggart) in her amendments today: the legal frameworks for governing prostitution adopted by other countries within the EU, including Northern Ireland. The review would look at the examples of Sweden and of Norway to help inform the debate".. (I bet it would!).

Also from the debate -


Crispin Blunt:

"I shall take the remaining minute and a half simply to make the point that the authoritarian, moralistic and un-evidenced potential catastrophe that presents itself as new clause 6 must be opposed. In proposing these provisions, the hon. Member for Slough (Fiona Mactaggart) complained about the fact that she got on television programmes and then found that her statistics were under dispute. That is hardly surprising, because all the academic evidence is on the other side of the argument."

Fiona Mactaggart:

"Will the hon. Gentleman give way?"

Crispin Blunt:

"No, I will not. It takes the scion of a couple of baronetcies with the education of Cheltenham Ladies’ college to produce such a moralistic sense that can define sex work as exploitation—without ever having listened to the sex workers themselves. It is a pity, given the trouble the hon. Member for Hayes and Harlington (John McDonnell) took to draw attention to this group of people, that the hon. Lady did not take the trouble to listen to them. Had she done so, I cannot believe that she would have come to this view because the unintended consequence of her proposal would be to put the people whom she is trying to help in peril. That is a serious mistake."

Harvey    [30477.   Posted 4-Nov-2014 Tue 05:32]
  phantom,

There was a consultation on the government`s prposals and a Regulatory Impact Assesment.

Both emphaised the minimal nature, in cost, in added workload for the police and courts and interference with legit activities. This was all based on the notion that what would be made criminal to possess was, broadly, no more that what was already illegal to publish under the OPA. It was that analysis which led to the estimate of 30 or so cases per year.

The fact of over a thousand cases per year is evidence that the estimate was wrong and therefore the regulatory impact is far greater than was proposed.

Part of the implementation was to establish a process of review of how the law was working in practice. Where is that review and what is the assessment of how the law is working?

phantom    [30476.   Posted 3-Nov-2014 Mon 14:17]
  Harvey [30475]

Then what about the enactment was incorrect?

Harvey    [30475.   Posted 3-Nov-2014 Mon 10:13]
  phantom,

"The law effectively bans many times more than it sets out to do."

And I think this is the angle which could be explored. Not in relation to whether the law is incompatible with the ECHR, but that the process of enacting it was faulty.

phantom    [30474.   Posted 3-Nov-2014 Mon 08:42]
  Harvey [30473]

Well, the aim of the law is to protect us, the citizens, from whatever corruption or harm these depictions are supposed to contain.

Now whilst seeking to achieve this protection the infringement on free expression must be necessary and proportionate.

The only thing we know the law to ban is, aside from some gory material, bestiality.
The gory stuff and the bestiality are thus the only thing we can define as being the aim of the law from which to protect us. If that is not so, then they have had ample opportunity to define what beyond that they mean.

Other material is banned by implication.

To stop people from viewing mainstream hardcore videos because they contain some scene which falls into the “uncertain” bracket, in order to pursue the aim of banning some gory stuff and bestiality surely must be seen as a disproportionate effect.

It curbs the right of passive free expression way beyond its actual perceivable aim.

The aim of the law can only be that of what we actually can clearly perceive it to ban.
The aim of the law cannot be to protect us from that material over which it creates uncertainty.
The aim of the law cannot be to create uncertainty.

The uncertainty is merely the result of our not being able to rule out whether an interpretation that is not our own would equate material with that we know to be the law`s aim (i.e. particularly gory material and bestiality).

Therefore the crux of the law must lie with the identifiably illegal material.
That is in essence from what we are to be protected.

It is therefore for that purpose alone that free expression can be infringed upon. However, clearly the law infringes on expression beyond that by the sheer scale of doubt it creates.

Most law, especially moral law, will create an area of doubt. No wording can be so perfect as to avoid any doubt altogether.

But given that here the area of doubt surpasses by many multiples the identifiable aim of the law, when infringing free expression, then the impact upon free expression must be disproportionate.

Government cannot claim it its aim to protect us from material over which it casts mere doubt.
It can only claim the aim to be to protect us from that which it comprehensively defines.

Some discrepancy between the aim and what is effectively banned (by doubt) is excusable, due to the limitations of language and differing interpretations.

However, once a statute bans more through this discrepancy than it actually identifiably bans by the wording of the statute itself, then the infringement of free expression is subject mainly to the discrepancy, not the statute.

The discrepancy being disproportionate, the infringement must be disproportionate.

For the infringement of the human right is only permitted in order to achieve the stated aim. Not to reach far beyond the stated aim by multiples. To do so, is by definition disproportionate infringement upon the human right.

A ban that mainly consists of a chill factor is clearly overreaching any stated aim. It is only the stated aim which excuses the infringement of free expression.
The perceivable aim of the law being dwarfed by the chilling by the law through doubt, the permissible impact on free expression is dwarfed by a further impact for which no permission under ECHR exists.
The further impact on free expression being a multiple of the permissible impact by the law`s stated aim, the overall impact on free expression is disproportionate to its aim.

The law effectively bans many times more than it sets out to do.
Therefore if follows that the law infringes free expression many times more than it is permitted to do.
Ergo the lack of proportionality in what it bans relates directly to a lack of proportion in infringement of free expression.

Sorry, if I`m long winded. I`m trying my best here. :)

Harvey    [30473.   Posted 3-Nov-2014 Mon 03:37]
  phantom

"Thus the law effectively bans what it is known to ban AND what it casts into uncertainty"

Yes, exactly.


"The disproportion between the categories of "certain illegal" and "uncertain" does thus also translate into a disproportionate impact on the passive right to free expression under ECHR."

No. As you just said, both categories of image are effectively banned. From the HR standpoint it doesn`t matter whether possession of a particular image is certainly illegal or not. All that matters is that it is not certainly legal. The question then is: Is prohibiting the possession of such an image necessary and proportionate?

"The two proportionalities thus relate to each other."

I can`t see how.

phantom    [30472.   Posted 2-Nov-2014 Sun 11:41]
  Harvey [30471]

"Proportionality in respect of the ECHR relates to the effect of the infringement on an individual`s rights versus the need to protect others. Whether one is disproportionate versus the other. You need to be careful of veering towards seeing proportionality in terms of the numbers of people which could be affected or the numbers of images which could cause someone to be affected."

Yes, I did indeed consider that.

But debating the nature of an infringement of rights is a bit like debating the length of a piece of string.
The truth is that something may be a theoretical infringement but barely noticeable on the legal richter scale as it does not have a significant impact.

However, here the very fact that what is rendered untouchable to the public by sheer uncertainty dwarfs what is actually known to be illegal shows that the impact of the law is out of proportion and so by definition is the infringement on people`s rights.

Any imposition of the law is an imposition on human rights.
But an infringement needs to be proportionate and necessary.

Now we can quarrel about necessity. (I guess we both think this law is about as necessary as a hole in the head.) But is it proportionate?

Well, if the measure impacts upon the people to a much greater extent through uncertainty than it does through what it bans, then surely its infringement of the rights of the people is disproportionate to its aims.

Thus, to my mind, the disproportionate effect of the law when rendering material uncertain is directly translated into the law not being proportionate in the infringement of human rights.

The law claims only to deal with the extremes of pornography. In practice it can only be discerned to ban bestiality and a very small quantum of particularly gory porn.
But it infringes the rights of people to view vast swathes of pornography because it casts them into doubt.

And the principles of law which you have explained demand that the people stay away from anything which they would understand as "uncertain".
Thus the law effectively bans what it is known to ban AND what it casts into uncertainty.

The disproportion between the categories of "certain illegal" and "uncertain" does thus also translate into a disproportionate impact on the passive right to free expression under ECHR.

The two proportionalities thus relate to each other.

And much as I understand your point on clear law, I still think that article 7 plays a role here. For surely it is the duty of a government issuing a ban to make it clear WHAT they are banning and not merely to fulfill the technical legal standard of allowing people to discern what remains permitted for them to do (with "certain illegal" and "uncertain" being prohibited).
Not least as it follows from that principle that all is permitted which is identifiably permitted. And not; all is permitted which is not expressly banned.
This, although law is generally defined by what it bans.
If a government cannot clearly describe what it is it wants to ban, then surely it has a problem of clarity under law.

Harvey    [30471.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 18:45]
  phantom,

Well, the extent of the uncertainty may be important. I`m just suggesting that its not relevant.

What is releveant is whether, because of the uncertainty, a convention right is being infringed.


Proportionality in respect of the ECHR relates to the effect of the infringement on an individual`s rights versus the need to protect others. Whether one is disproportionate versus the other. You need to be careful of veering towards seeing proportionality in terms of the numbers of people which could be affected or the numbers of images which could cause someone to be affected.

phantom    [30470.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 17:50]
  Harvey [30469]

"What you need to show is that the uncertainty means you have to avoid possessing some images which cannot be justified on the basis of being necessary and proportional with regard to the aim of the law."

Actually I was just further expanding my point via the edit function as you posted.
I touched on that very subject.

But I do think that the proportion between that which we can understand to be banned and that which is uncertain and, thus effectively banned also, is important.
Because it shows the overall impact of the law to be vast in comparison to the actually discernible prohibition.

I suspect you might disagree, but I think that this might well be a strong argument when considering whether the law is `proportionate" under ECHR. Because its impact on behaviour via the chilling effect is vastly disproportionate to what it can be discerned to prohibit.

Harvey    [30469.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 17:40]
  phantom,

It`s no trouble, honestly. In fact, answering you helps me understand things myself.

You asked what I thought about the attempts Backlash/Jackman appear to be making to get the DPA re-evaluated. I`ve simply tried to explain what I think might be the legal avenues open to them.

There is a case to be made that uncertainty about what is illegal means that what is certainly legal unneccesarily interferes with convention rights. I don`t actually thing you need to count or otherwise compare the quantity of legal images versus those which are uncertain. So forget about how to do that. What you need to show is that the uncertainty means you have to avoid possessing some images which cannot be justified on the basis of being necessary and proportional with regard to the aim of the law.

braintree    [30468.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 15:21]
  Might be worth mentioning that controversial censor baiting movie What the Peeper Saw is being released on US Bluray in a couple of weeks. A 13 year old Mark Lester gets to fondle Britt Eklands breasts and even gets to watch her strip naked in front of him - and from the looks of some newly discovered scenes they are actually naked in bed together . Also known as Night Hair Child apparently this was cut for its UK release but after new laws in 1978 it was effectively banned . US dvd releases have been difficult to find and this new Bluray is a Limited Edition exclusive to a US website . I wonder what the situation would be importing this ? Bizarrely it seems to have been aired at least once by ITV before 1978 in a late night slot . Cut presumably

http://www.vcientertainment.com/VCI-EXCLUSIVES/What-the-Peeper-Saw

phantom    [30467.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 12:57]
  Harvey {30464}

First off, thanks for the explanation.
I`m not sure how long this information is going to reside in my brain.
But at least I now understand the point. :)

As regards quantifying matters, I don`t think that actually boils down to counting individual images.
For one, these things cannot be counted. As you say, they are as good as infinite.

However, it is possible to quantify proportions of a total.
Just ask an astronomer.
Thus is it possible to achieve approximations of proportions of types of pornography.
For example, I guess it would be possible to ascertain roughly how much straightforward heterosexual pornography these days includes such things as anal sex, etc. I don`t think it would require anyone to count every video or image available.
These things are fairly self evident.

You ask me to demonstrate that the area of "uncertain" legal status is larger than the area of "legal" status.
Actually, given the vast amount of regular middle-of-the-road porn, I am in no doubt that there is more "legal" porn than "uncertain" porn under the DPA.
This was not my claim.

However, I`m equally convinced that the "uncertain" porn by far outweighs that which one can know to be "illegal".

In all fairness, to ask me to demonstrate this, would more than likely be asking me to commit a crime under this very statute.

But if we consider that even such acts as `choking` (be it through `deep throat` oral sex or otherwise) are to be filed under "uncertain", it is clear that a vast amount of mainstream pornography falls into the area of "uncertainty".
Other acts can also question the legality of fairly mainstream porn.
And lets not forget that even pure context can render normal mainstream porn possibly illegal and thus "uncertain".
That is before we even touch the massive area of fetish related material.

"Certainty of illegality" only applies to bestiality and some gory, bloody acts. They are far removed from the mainstream and thus will be lesser in number. (The principle applies that the further away you travel from the mainstream the fewer the depictions become.)
Even necrophilia material doesn`t really apply as "certain" as real necrophilia will not credibly exist, so the question of perceived "realism" of pretend necrophilia is the legal arbiter, clearly sending it into the "uncertain" column. And even any pretend necrophilia is hardly that widespread, given how far removed it is from the mainstream.

In numerical terms we are largely looking at bestiality for the main load of "certainty of illegality".
Whereas in the "uncertain" field resides a large portion of mainstream pornography and the overwhelming area of bdsm fetish related material.
It is fairly clear that the latter dwarfs the former.

Thus we are without doubt comparing a very large field of pornography which is "uncertain" within the statute with a limited area of pornography which falls into the "illegal" field.

I hold that the above is not opinion.
It is simply an observation of self evident fact.

Thus, the statute clearly puts many more times the amount of material into the "uncertain" column than it renders material identifiably "illegal".

In short: it renders doubtful much more than it bans.

According to the legal definition of clarity which you have explained the law may be "clear".
However, this is a rather technocratic clarity.

For any law which renders something illegal, but renders many more times the amount legally uncertain, would by no layman be deemed "clear" in the usual meaning of the English language.

Thus I fully accept your definition of legal clarity of a statute.
After all, no one would make that up.
But I would still apply my caveat, as the statute renders legally doubtful much more than it understandably defines as prohibited.
The chill factor is positively arctic. :)

The way you seem to read the law, you would concede that the only safe approach - in fact the only approach recognised by the courts - is to stay within the area of "certainly legal".
This however means that the law effectively bans both areas know as "certainly illegal" as well as "uncertain".

Given that the "uncertain" area surpasses the area of "certain illegal" by multiples, it figures that the law -effectively- bans wildly more than it -fathomably- bans, largely because the law represents an opinion.

Moreover it endangers those who may venture into the "uncertain" area by the nature of their sexual inclination. It`s hard to argue that something, subject to the sexual imperative, ought not be viewed, if you haven`t even comprehensively deemed it illegal.

To top it off, the "uncertain" area also represents the playground of the DPP. For it them with provides ample opportunity to ruin the lives of individuals who are subsequently found not guilty of the charges.

Thus the "uncertain" area is vastly disproportionate to the "certainly illegal" area, as well as incredibly destructive.

Not least as the charges - as illustrated by the Holland case - effectively amount to public incitement to hatred.

Harvey    [30466.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 06:13]
  freworld,

In respect of your two questions.

1) Are the justifications for state interference adequate?

The test is whether the consequential restrictions on the rights conferred by articles 8 and 10 are both necessary and proportionate.

I would argue that they are not neccessary. The reason being that the mere possession of an image is not harmful. Others would argue that looking at images of certain acts or depictions of acts desensitizes a person to the harm caused by actually committing such acts and thereby makes them more likely to commit those acts.


2) Is it clear what is illegal to privately possess?

As I have been discussing with phontom as regards legal clarity, that is actually the wrong question. The proper question is whether it is clear what is legal to possess. I would say it is.


If you accept that with respect to articles 8 and 10, it`s necessary to prohibit the possession of *some* images, you could argue that although it is clear what is legal to possess, the uncertainty about what is illegal to possess is unneccesarily restrictive regarding the possession of *other* images.

That`s basically my understanding of the HRA approach to s.63, CJIA and all the other laws in relation to mere possession of an image.

freeworld    [30465.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 04:38]
  Harvey [30464. Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 03:51]
How are the bounds (boundaries?) actually being defined here conferring legal certainty? Those who are tasked with enforcing this law certainly don`t seem certain at times, so how can Joe Public be certain? I can`t comprehend how the subjective adjectives critical to guilt or innocence in 63 can confer "legal certainty"? Does the subjective magically change into the objective when used in UK law? Admittedly some adjectives are more objective than others, have some claims ay least to a degree of objectivity - the tall man etc - but the adjectives used as critical evidence in 63 like seeming "real", "disgusting" etc are hardly the same as this. But these are being used to establish criminal guilt and possibly send people to prison in an area where human rights are being interfered with by the state.


Cannot the whole issue be summarized like this.
The state has chosen to interfere in areas covered by the human rights act. These are conditional, not absolute rights, interference is permissible, but -

1) Are the justifications for state interference adequate?
2) Is it clear what is illegal to privately possess?

In both cases the answer is no.

Harvey    [30464.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 03:51]
  phantom,

OK. Let`s deal with the caveat, which is about the extent of the area of uncertainty.

I`m not sure how relevant it is to talk about numbers of images. It suggests that there is a finite number of images and that the extent of the three classses of image labelled `legal`, `illegal` and `uncertain` can be quantified by counting the numbers of images falling into each class.

Apart from that, you haven`t even demonstrated that the number of images labelled `uncertain` is larger than the number labelled `legal`. I think if you sat down and thought about it, you`d realise that thare are an infinite number of images. Not only that, but there are an infinite number of images in each class, so counting them doesn`t give a meaningful measure of the extent of each class.

There may be a way of measuring the extent of the area of uncertainty in relation to s.63, but I don`t think counting images is tha way to do it.


You ask what this means: "... It does not require that there is certainty in respect of every particular image, rather that the bounds of uncertainty are defined so that any particular image can be put into one of the three classes..."

I was just trying to use a different form of words to say that legal certainty allows for the fact that any particular image can be put into the class labelled `uncertain`. Something which I now think we agree about, as you gave examples of three images and you`ve put them into each of the three classes. You have used the definition of "extreme" in s.63 to define the bounds of uncertainty and you could do the same for any particular image I gave you.

Your caveat was about the extent of uncertainty, which I don`t think you can measure in the way you`ve suggested. But however it`s measured, as long as s.63 is written so that the bounds are defined, it satisfies the requirement of legal certainty.

freeworld    [30463.   Posted 1-Nov-2014 Sat 03:34]
  phantom [30462. Posted 31-Oct-2014 Fri 17:26]
The importance of certainty and strong, rational, and appropriate justifications for a law like the one in sect 63, is because this legislation represents a major, draconian interference in areas covered by the human rights act - articles 8 and 10 private life, and freedom of expression. Legislation about driving cars, doesn`t interfere with purely private life or free expression. A law about driving cars is there because others can be killed and injured as a consequence of a driver`s actions. Section 63 should have a strong case of real harm justifying it like the driving law does. But it doesn`t, their given justifications are irrational/inadequate in this respect. Section 63 is fundamentally a law which simply criminalizes private taste and "sends messages", but it`s masquerading as one about harm/ abuse. A driving law isn`t there because a car crash doesn`t look nice, the DPA is only justified rationally on the grounds that certain people say certain images don`t "look nice", on the basis of what the MOJ asserts "most people think". So these 2 sorts of law are quite dissimilar, one is there because of actual harm, not aesthetics/subjective morals, the other merely claims it`s about harm, but is actually just rationally about policing private morals and taste - that is section 63`s only real justification - and that should not be enough for a law impacting on a key area of the individual`s human rights. One specifically interferes in an area where a legislative "guarantee" means any government interference should only take place where strong, rational reasons exist for such interference. Further, in doing this the present sect 63 law uses evidential criteria making the law one of strict liability, as critical for establishing guilt or innocence. You don`t know, you can`t, in many instances actually know you have "met" the criteria at all unless/until convicted. That`s because a huge part of the evidence is completely subjective - "real", "obscene","disgusting", "pornographic", extracted for erotic use (jury mind reading there) "likely to result in" "explicit and realistic"...

The fact that we aren`t allowed to see supposed legal advice which allegedly says the law is not in breach of the HRA, adds to the suspicion they knew it was not, but ignored this and dissembled over the issue in implementing the legislation.

phantom    [30462.   Posted 31-Oct-2014 Fri 17:26]
  Harvey [30461]

"...any particular event, act or image can always be put into one of three classes, namely; those which certainly fail to pass the threshold, those which certainly pass the threshold, and those about which there is uncertainty."

"What legal certainty requires is that laws must be written so that this is the case."

"So, before we go any further, do you think s.63 passes the test of "legal certainty"?"

Ok, here goes.

Yes, if what is required is for "legal certainty" is for the individual to be able to place any image into "fail threshold", "uncertain" and " passes threshold" then the statute passes "legal certainty".

In essence, the individual can say "I know this to be legal", "I have no idea whether this is illegal or not", or "I know this to be illegal."

In the case of this statute:
"fail threshold": couple shagging
"passes threshold": man buggering horse
"uncertain": woman choking on male`s member

However, I would forward one caveat; namely that the area of "uncertain" in this statute to my knowledge surpasses in size the "passes threshold" area by thousands of percent.
i.e. I believe the number of images definable as "illegal" to be a great many times smaller than the number of images whose legal status cannot be defined other than by a court case (i.e. a retrospective coin toss).

I would further ask what this means:

"... It does not require that there is certainty in respect of every particular image, rather that the bounds of uncertainty are defined so that any particular image can be put into one of the three classes..."

In what way do the "bounds of uncertainty" need to be "defined"?
If there was such a deliberate definition, it would surely mean the authors would deliberately cause uncertainty.

If it means that one knows at what point one no longer knows, then yes, the "bounds of uncertainty" are defined.

To take up your example of driving:

"That if you cannot be sure whether some specific aspect of driving is dangerous, the only way of staying on the right side of the RTA, is to not drive at all. That blatantly misses an important point, which is that there may be some aspects of driving which you can be certain are not dangerous."

The example is a good one.
But what if the RTA left vast areas (not merely some specific aspect) of driving as possibly definable as dangerous?
The RTA is practicable because its area of uncertainty surely is tight.
Its entire aim is to attempt to create certainty.
If however driving in a red car would mean much of driving might be deemed dangerous, because rules could be varied for red cars, if the arresting policeman thought that the driver was driving his vehicle in an obscene or inappropriate manner, who would drive in a red car?
Red cars would not be illegal. But nobody would effectively know with any degree of certainty what happened once they were in a red car.
One might be able to define that red cars caused one uncertainty, but nothing beyond that.
So surely, the only way to stay clear of the RTA indeed would be not to drive at all - in a red car. :)

Harvey    [30461.   Posted 31-Oct-2014 Fri 04:15]
  phantom,

I can see why you are struggling.

You point out, quite reasonably, that there is uncertainty about which images are caught by s.63. It`s not a controversial statement. You could make similar statements about the uncertainty of what degree of force is "reasonable" in the context of self-defence or which acts are "dangerous" in the context of causing death by dangerous driving. Actually, I think you would be hard pressed to find an example of a law where there was no uncertainty.

Now you would say, and have said, that because there is uncertainty, the law is unworkable. That if you cannot be sure whether some specific aspect of driving is dangerous, the only way of staying on the right side of the RTA, is to not drive at all. That blatantly misses an important point, which is that there may be some aspects of driving which you can be certain are not dangerous.

So, the first mistake you may make is one of extrapolation. You may say that because there is some uncertainty, there can be no certainty. That because there is uncertainty about whether particular images are caught by s.63, there can be no certainty that any image will not be caught by it. That`s just a logic fail. And it remains a logic fail even where you consider sub-sets of images such as piercing or bondage or role play, or whatever.

So, if we can get past that potential mistake and agree that on the grey scales of "dangerous", "reasonable" and "extreme", any particular event, act or image can always be put into one of three classes, namely; those which certainly fail to pass the threshold, those which certainly pass the threshold, and those about which there is uncertainty.

What legal certainty requires is that laws must be written so that this is the case. It does not require that there is certainty in respect of every particular image, rather that the bounds of uncertainty are defined so that any particular image can be put into one of the three classes.

The bounds of uncertainty would not be defined if s.63 had been written so as to include possession of images prior to its enactment. Being retro-active would fail the test of legal certainty. Similarly if the definition of "excluded image" in s.64 was dependent on a BBFC certification granted *after* the image was possessed, that too would fail the test of legal certainty.

Do not confuse "legal certainty" with any other kind of certainty. If you do, you will end up seeing every law as unworkable, because it employs grey scale concepts such as "reasonable", "dangerous", etc.

So, before we go any further, do you think s.63 passes the test of "legal certainty"?

phantom    [30460.   Posted 30-Oct-2014 Thu 15:37]
  Harvey {30459}

"No. In respect of whether the law is clear enough, the key is whether we can decide that a particular image is not "pornographic" and "extreme", or is an "excluded image" and therefore, legal to possess."

"It is specifically *not* about whether, apart from those images, there are some other images about which there is a degree of uncertainty. Those may or may not be illegal to possess, but you can regulate your conduct to stay the right side of the law by not possessing them."

Ok, Harvey, You`ve stumped me. Really, you have.
I`ll readily admit that I don`t get this point right now.
Trust me, it`s not that I`m being deliberately obtuse because I see my view contradicted. It really is that I do not understand.

Here`s my problem:

1. "...whether we can decide that a particular image is not "pornographic" and "extreme", or is an "excluded image" and therefore, legal to possess."

2. "It is specifically *not* about whether, apart from those images, there are some other images about which there is a degree of uncertainty...."

These two points are in response to:
a) "...we... cannot know an illegal image from a legal one."

Now point 2 refers to there being other images, which may or may not be illegal.

But I`m referring to `an image`. Frankly, any image. I mentioned various bdsm acts earlier. Be it piercing, needle play, whipping, bondage, or even role play providing context. Take an image depicting any one (or several) of those categories and tell me that you can, with any degree of certainty, "decide that a - particular image - is not "pornographic" and "extreme", or is an "excluded image" and therefore, legal to possess."

I honestly don`t see how you can. I know I can`t.
But that is what you need to be able to do under this law if you are interested in sexual fetish imagery. On pain of imprisonment.

I don`t quite see how that means I`m referring to `some other imagery` that might exist.

I swear I`m not being argumentative for the sake of it. Right now, I really do just not `get it`.

In point 1 you refer to `a particular image`.
In point 2 you refer to `some other images`.
In short the particular image matters. The other images do not.

But, forgive me, how does one know whether the`particular image` is not one of those `other images`?

I know I`m missing something. I just don`t quite know what it is. :)

--

I just know that from my own understanding there seems to be a very wide area of obscurity.

The text of the law as I understand in itself leaves millions of bdsm afficionados scratching their heads.
And that is merely the uncertainty created within the definitions themselves.

A yet greater area than that surrounds the DPP interpretation.
With the DPP even prosecuting men in tiger suits, the possibility of prosecution is not that easily avoided.
For I would not know anyone who would have thought a man in a tiger suit could ever get you in trouble, according to the text of the law.
But that is where we currently stand, a man in a tiger suit - or an equivalent - can get you processed through the justice system.

Thus, as the area of uncertainty - as regards the DPP - begins at Tony the Tiger and - as regards the text of the statute - begins at someone doing something unconventional of which someone else - might - disapprove, surely the law is not sufficiently clear.

The individual must be able to reach a decision, one way or another.

I readily concede an individual can most likely separate cases at the extremes of the spectrum, given the text of the statute.
(Albeit that not even that protects you from being hauled over the coals for a man in a tiger suit.)

But I cannot see how being able to identify the legality of the extremes of the spectrum means the law is clear.

Being able to say that video depiction of a woman being bludgeoned to death and then screwed would be illegal, as opposed to a couple having sex in the missionary position being legal, is hardly being able to interpret the law. Surely?

Vast sections of pornography are left in limbo here.
This is not simply referring to there being `other images`.
It is fairly obvious that a great many people will have such imagery in the UK. Thus they are not speculative `other images`.
If these people are confronted by police, each one of those images suddenly becomes a `particular image`.

Yet is there really anyone in the land who has got the slightest inkling whether these people are actually in breach of this law?

If no one can tell, then how can the law be sufficiently clear?

As the Andrew Holland case illustrates not even the lawyers know what to advise their clients.
A law which even baffles the lawyers? Clear?

As you can see, I`m struggling, Harvey.
I fully comprehend that you perceive some technical legal principle by which the law - albeit an ass - can be deemed clear.
My problem is not that I disagree with your perception.
At present I simply cannot perceive what it is you do perceive.

Harvey    [30459.   Posted 30-Oct-2014 Thu 10:19]
  phantom,

"Surely the key is that we, for all the time we`ve spent over the years on this subject, cannot know an illegal image from a legal one."

No. In respect of whether the law is clear enough, the key is whether we can decide that a particular image is not "pornographic" and "extreme", or is an "excluded image" and therefore, legal to possess.

It is specifically *not* about whether, apart from those images, there are some other images about which there is a degree of uncertainty. Those may or may not be illegal to possess, but you can regulate your conduct to stay the right side of the law by not possessing them.


Quite separately from legal certainty, there is the question of whether the degree of uncertainty about whether a particular image can be possessed, infringes convention rights. But you have to engage it on that basis. It`s not enough to say: `We don`t know for certain whether or not we can posssess some images.`, which you have done. You have to be able to show that the lack of certainty neccessarily leads to s.63 being incompatible with a convention right, which you haven`t.

That`s my understanding of the difference between the principle of legal certainty on the one hand and uncertainty about particular images on the other. If you want to, you can convolute the two, but you won`t be making any kind of legal sense, IMO.

phantom    [30458.   Posted 30-Oct-2014 Thu 07:36]
  Harvey {30456}

"As you have said yourself, you can stay the lawful side of s.63 by not possessing anything which is pornographic. In saying that, what you are actually contesting is not that the DPA is unclear, but that because of the uncertainty about what is "extreme", it is unnecessarily restrictive."

So, essentially, the fact that the DPP don`t know how to interpret the law either (man in tiger suit!), does in no way demonstrate the law to be unclear?

Surely the key is that we, for all the time we`ve spent over the years on this subject, cannot know an illegal image from a legal one.

Yes, we can separate extremes, but nothing more.

The ability to separate extremes hardly suggests clarity.

Else a weather report would be sufficiently clear if it either predicted boiling hot or freezing cold weather for the next day, but never made any further gradation.
The prediction would be next to useless, but in most cases whatever weather actually resulted could possibly be described as hot or cold.
But surely the weather report would be deemed by anyone not to be sufficiently clear.
Because nobody would know what weather to expect.

Is describing a cow as an animal which eats grass a clear definition?
For sure, a cow eats grass.
If you wish to steer clear of cows, don`t go near any animal which eats grass. Simple.
But a cow is not a horse, nor is it a bison or a sheep.
Thus describing a cow as anything which could be confused with an elk or an elephant is not clear.
Surely the entire purpose of a definition is at least to separate a cow from a kangaroo.
Yet if it cannot even do that, then surely it is not a definition - by definition. ;)

Any law of this nature will always leave some room for interpretation. Else the courts would have much less to do. But here the area of interpretation by far outstrips the area of definition.
Surely this must be attributed to a lack of clarity.
When a law casts more doubt than it does certainty it cannot be deemed clearly defined.

sergio    [30457.   Posted 30-Oct-2014 Thu 02:35]
  Seemingly someone`s flopped it (page 58 of the pdf)
http://www.istockphoto.com/photo/teen-girl-with-intense-stare-and-copy-space-20744493?st=088c2ad
Description `Teenage girl with intense stare.`

http://www.gmpcc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/81461-Coffey-Report_v5_WEB-single-pages.pdf

From a pic from an American - http://www.istockphoto.com/profile/catlane

----



Page 69 of the pdf
`Engaging different types of communities
29. The difficulties of working in some communities
cannot be underestimated. The increased
sexualisation of children and young people
involves an avalanche of explicit music videos, the
normalisation of quasi-pornographic images, sexting,
selfies, and Instagram. It has given rise to new social
norms in changed expectations of sexual entitlement,
and with it confused understanding of consent.`

http://www.gmpcc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/81461-Coffey-Report_v5_WEB-single-pages.pdf

Harvey    [30456.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 19:12]
  phantom,

"In that regard it is indeed easy to stay on the right side of the law."

Well, that is all that is necessary for the clarity which legal certainty requires.

As you have said yourself, you can stay the lawful side of s.63 by not possessing anything which is pornographic. In saying that, what you are actually contesting is not that the DPA is unclear, but that because of the uncertainty about what is "extreme", it is unneccesarily restrictive.

phantom    [30455.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 14:47]
  Harvey [30454]
I`m not quite sure of the point you`re making, Harvey.
If the only legal certainty of not offending the DPA is not to look at pornography (or controversial pornography for that matter), then the only legal certainty of not offending traffic law is not to drive a car.
In that regard it is indeed easy to stay on the right side of the law.

But the fact is, nobody would say the above about driving.

In the case of the DPA the law however is so vague, even a man in a tiger suit can lead to prosecution.

I think people on here will be among the best informed folks on the DPA around. Yet, I do not think any of us would be able to show any degree of certainty on any even remotely controversial imagery.

If the police and the CPS think a man in a tiger suit might breach the law, it merely shows how far out to sea this legislation is.

"Not really. IMO points 1 and 2 would be easily dismissed as grounds for making a declaration of incompatibility. The law is clear enough to be able to stay on the right side of. There is no need for the DPP to provide any additional guidance."

I`m working from the above statement of yours.
If the law is clear enough, then how come the problem of not being able to achieve any degree of certainty occurs, irrespective of how well informed you seek to be?

If the DPP itself thinks a man in a tiger suit is an offence under the DPA, do they really not need to tell us a little more about their thinking?

Harvey    [30454.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 09:37]
  phantom,

"To tell these people, simply to stay away from it, not because it is illegal, but because it could potentially be found to be, seems unreasonable."

Unreasonable, certainly. The entire effect of the law is unreasonable, because mere possession of an image causes no harm.

But the issue raised was one of legal certainty.

phantom    [30453.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 08:44]
  Harvey {30452}

"Nevertheless, you can recognise which images are "controversial", so you can stay the right side of the law by not possessing them. i.e. the law is clear enough that you can regulate your behaviour thereby."

Is it? I`m still not really sure.
Especially where sexuality - and the sexual imperative - enters into it.
People will be drawn to imagery if it is `their thing`.
This is undeniable.

To tell these people, simply to stay away from it, not because it is illegal, but because it could potentially be found to be, seems unreasonable.

So yes, technically one can simply `stay away from it` (albeit that one only knows if a picture is controversial if one has already seen it!).
But sexuality is not a lifestyle choice.
And to ask people to voluntarily curb their legal sexual preferences in order not to expose themselves to risk seems unreasonable.

The law seems to cut across common human drives. More so, across legal ones. Good old Aristotle`s motto, `there can be no morality without practicality`, rises up from the dust yet again.

People are drawn to pornography. To claim otherwise is pure folly.
Some pornography may be banned. Child pornography is a perfect example of the fact that this does not suddenly switch off paedophiles.

Why then would a risk of unforeseeable, potential illegality switch off those who are drawn toward this controversial imagery?
We know it will not. Moreover, to even expect it, is to deny the human condition.

I make no secret of the fact that I do not agree with the law.
But if a law there must be to satisfy the morality of some, so be it.
The least one can ask, however, is that the law is clear. That people can know what is banned and where the line is.

I`ve been involved since the proposal of this law. I still cannot say I could differentiate a legal from an illegal image with any degree of certainty. If I cannot, who possibly can?
Can you say categorically, Harvey, that you can keep with any degree of certainty an illegal from a legal image under this law?

We both know a clearly legal image (man in tiger suit having sex with woman) from a clearly illegal one (woman with lacerated genitalia).

But where pretence enters the field, terms such a `realistic` throw up massive problems. As does the `likeliness` for serious injury. Not because we`re being contrary and argumentative, but simply because they do.
And in BDSM practices with piercings or needle play, whippings or bondage, or simple role playing, very quickly huge questions arise.
To those people drawn to this material, `staying away from controversial, legal imagery` may just not be practicable - without effectively giving up viewing images of their fetish per se.

To top it all, if the law enforcement agencies and the courts even think a man in a tiger suit may be in breach of this law, then, pray, where do we stand?

Clearly the understandings and interpretations of this statute are laughable. They are so as a consequence of the nature of the law itself.

If even the law enforcement agencies can so wildly differ in their interpretations of the law, how could anyone know what a jury might decide?

This law simply cannot be administered justly. Not least, as, in essence, it represents an opinion.

Or is there anyone who thinks that, after a run-in period of these last five years or so, it will now be plain sailing, because the law is better understood? The issue of wildly differing interpretations will simmer down?

I very much doubt it.

Harvey    [30452.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 03:31]
  phantom,

"I still think it is pretty impossible when confronted with any controversial picture to decide whether it would fall within this offence or not."

Nevertheless, you can recognise which images are "controversial", so you can stay the right side of the law by not possessing them. i.e. the law is clear enough that you can regulate your behaviour thereby.

The "chilling effect" would become an issue if the definition of "extreme" was so vague that, in order to stay the right side of the law, the consequent inabiliy to possess such "controversial" images interfered with the right to a private life or right to free expression. Given the margin of appreciation which the ECtHR allows, I think challenging s.63, on the basis that it is incompatible with Article 8 or 10, wouldn`t succeed.

If you agree that the law, as it stands, is clear enough, the need for the DPP to give further guidance falls away.

What remains is the fact of 5,500 cases going before the courts. One interpretation of that is that *even if* s.63 is clear and is not imcompatible with the ECHR, the definition of "extreme" has caught far more than the images (30 cases per year) which the government intended. So I think you could get a court to at least consider that the *process* (of converting their intention into a workable law) was faulty to the point where it is unjust and therefore, unlawful.

JR is the means by which a process can be challenged, but the application to JR has to be made withn 3 months. Clearly an application made now to JR the process of enacting s.63 would be rejected as it happened in 2008, so you need to find a backdoor way of doing it. I am guessing that`s what Backlash/Jackman are up to.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30451.   Posted 29-Oct-2014 Wed 02:36]
  The Telegraph is having a bit of fun at the expense of the CPS

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/11193829/Tiger-porn-case-Can-you-do-better-than-the-CPS.html

phantom    [30450.   Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 17:48]
  Harvey [30449]

"Not really. IMO points 1 and 2 would be easily dismissed as grounds for making a declaration of incompatibility. The law is clear enough to be able to stay on the right side of. There is no need for the DPP to provide any additional guidance."

Not sure there, I still think it is pretty impossible when confronted with any controversial picture to decide whether it would fall within this offence or not.

Moreover the fact that they are pointing to this court case where, they argue, the court itself found the matter rather baffling, seems to suggest that they have a leg to stand on, so to speak.

In effect their challenge to the DPP is one which they most likely seek to provide as evidence per se; namely that the DPP cannot provide a workable definition of the prohibited material.
If they cannot, they how could anyone else?

You have earlier mentioned the chilling effect. That is, in essence the only means by which people can `stay on the right side of the law`.

But a great many who wish to view pornography of certain fetishes seem to have a problem staying on the right side of the line. As 5500 prosecutions would attest, rather than 150.

--

As for the possible claim by government that it has emerged that the problem is bigger than expected. Would this not suggest that the benefits of this law thus would have to be exponentially greater?

Something in society, not least sexual violence, would have to have vastly improved. After all, who will forget the government sponsored meta analysis which concluded extreme porn resulted in cases of violence and death? It was the `academic basis` for this law. (albeit a retrospective one)

But if the impact of the law is over 36 times greater (and that`s not counting cautions) then the benefits of the law would need to be of a comparably greater magnitude, being much greater than expected.
Yet, there not being any perceivable benefits to combating this problem, one might say, that stating the problem being greater than originally estimated, would ring rather hollow.

As said: if the problem is much greater, then the dividend of now combating the problem would need to be much greater.
The more you inflate the apparent `problem`, the more glaring the discrepancy becomes for there being no benefit.

I don`t think this to be pure semantics. CEOP and co like to point to kids which have been rescued from exploitation, etc.
(yes, that`s often semantics, but at least it is something)

What can the DPA lobby claim thus far? If any measurable effect was expected by introducing the DPA, then a 36 times greater impact on enforcement would be expected to have a statistically significant beneficial impact over a period of five years. In fact, an obvious one.
Yet, I do not believe there is anything to which anyone can point.

So if the problem was over 36 times greater than expected, then the negative impact on society would have been greater by a similar magnitude. Thus, having dealt with this much greater problem, a much greater benefit would be derived.
The absence of benefit, only places the problem itself in doubt.

That is, unless the government wishes to distance itself now from the government rapid evidence assessment and wishes now to take the position that its law has no benefit per se, thus rendering the above argument irrelevant, - at some cost to the credibility of the statute.

Harvey    [30449.   Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 15:27]
  phantom,

"So to your mind, points 1. 2. and 3. work in conjunction with each other, addressing the same issue; the impact assessment and the evident discrepancy with reality."

Not really. IMO points 1 and 2 would be easily dismissed as grounds for making a declaration of incompatibility. The law is clear enough to be able to stay on the right side of. There is no need for the DPP to provide any additional guidance.

Point 3 - that s.63 is a disproportionate measure - stands a chance of being accepted.

The question is how do you get a court to consider it. You could try to go through the HRA route to have a declaration of incompatility. Or you could go the JR route to have the *process* of legislation ruled unlawful.


phantom    [30448.   Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 08:59]
  Harvey

So to summarise:

Article 7 of ECHR is the ancient convention of no punishment without crime. Party to this paragraph is that law must be comprehensible; as in, the individual must be in a position to discern whether he would be acting illegally.
This is what I understand Jackman & Co to be targeting with their points 1. and 2. that the prohibited material is not sufficiently clearly defined and that there is insufficient guidance from the CPS.

Article 10 of ECHR grants freedom of expression but allows individual nation states to curb this, for the protection of morals. But the measure must be proportionate.
This is what I see as being their angle in point 3. when they refer to disproportionate.

-

You however see it as three points targeted tightly at the impact assessment.

You see the vagueness of the definitions leading to the real impact overshooting the intended impact by miles. So the disproportionality refers in your mind to the effect of the law, when measured against the impact assessment. The cause for the disproportion being the vagueness of the law.

So to your mind, points 1. 2. and 3. work in conjunction with each other, addressing the same issue; the impact assessment and the evident discrepancy with reality.

-

I`m not sure whether the below point really makes things any clearer, but I guess it is relevant to the issue.

“Thus, on Mr Holland’s behalf, we at Hodge Jones & Allen LLP have asked that the Secretary of State for the Home Department to carry out a Human Rights Impact Assessment of the offences. Should the offence fail the Human Rights Impact Assessment, we have requested that this be confirmed in writing so that we can issue judicial review proceedings.“

So warm-hearted, easy-going Theresa May seems to be being asked to conduct a Impact Assessment. However, what muddies the waters is that she is being asked to conduct a Human Rights Impact Assessment.

Referring to Impact Assessment seems to back your interpretation. But referring to a Human Rights Impact Assessment on the other hand might suggest they are asking the government to look again whether this is actually human rights compatible.

In the third letter on the obscenitylawyer page the human rights paragraphs listed are 8 right to a private life and 10 freedom of expression.
The absence of a mention of article 7 may well therefore indicate that they are not pushing on the human rights angle for the absence of clear law. Then again, the mention of the other two seems to suggest that they feel human rights play at least some part in this.

“Mr Holland was innocent, yet he was persuaded initially to plead guilty.  That guilty plea was accepted by the Court and then the Court agreed to vacate the guilty plea. This suggests that there is a lack of understanding on the part of individuals, practitioners and the courts as to the correct scope of this offence. In this context there is a particular need for clarity given the significant social stigma attached to a prosecution under Section 63.”

So one of the key issues made by Jackman seems to be that the courts themselves do not seem to be able to ascertain what is supposed to be caught under this offence.
One can`t help but smile at reading that line. I wonder whether any judge involved in any potential judicial inquiry would see the irony contained within it.

It is also quite interesting to see the paper points out that the DPP cannot claim it can`t provide clarification, as it clearly has already attempted to do so. :)

“The third proposed ground of challenge is that the offence is a disproportionate means of achieving the legislation`s intended aims.  Whilst it is clear that the legislation is aimed at the protection of morals and this would be accepted by both the domestic and Strasbourg courts however, it is submitted that the legislation is disproportionate.  That is because:....”

Once again, there is a reference to the intended aims, which clearly seems to back your view, Harvey.
In fact does the line `AND this would be accepted by... Strasbourg courts` mean they effectively forfeit any claim of incompatibility with ECHR? Hmm...

But in the nine point reasoning that follows, one point at least (b) refers to incompatibility with ECHR. Then again, that might just be a matter of carrying together every argument available to back the view of this offence overshooting its intended aims (which still makes me wonder why article 7 is not mentioned).

So all in all, I`m still a little confused about the reasoning behind this.
Then again, at least someone is fighting the cause. (I say, give the man a knighthood!)

If you can peer through the fog more clearly, Harvey, by all means let me know. Your insights in this area are always appreciated. Not just be me, I would add. :)

freeworld    [30447.   Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 07:12]
  Harvey {30446. Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 05:54}
The issue of compatibility over the issue of knowing when "conforming"/"not conforming" to the law is discussed in detail by Mr Jackman in his letter on the blog.

In the bill`s guidance notes, the MOJ gave reasons for compatibility with the HRA which don`t really bother with the issue of certainty of conforming to the law in private life at all. They "deal with" necessity, moral protection, rights and freedom of others...I may have missed it, but it`s as if the subjectivity in so much of the evidential criteria of the new offense, meant they knew they were on even shakier ground there than with the rest, and just ignored the issue completely.

As these were the MOJ`s given arguments for compatibility, I hope they are addressed as part of any HR challenge to the law and shown to be inadequate; not hard, as they are based in falsehoods and irrationalities.

Here they are -

Extreme Pornographic Images

802. The Government believes that these clauses constitute an interference with Convention rights under Articles 8 and 10 but that for the reasons set out below this is justified as being in accordance with the law, and necessary in a democratic society for the prevention of crime, for the protection of morals and for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.

803.The material to be covered by this new offense is at the most extreme end of the spectrum of pornographic material which is likely to be thought abhorrent by most people. It is not possible at law to give consent to the type of activity covered by the offense, so it is therefore likely that a criminal offense is being committed where the activity which appears to be taking place is actually taking place. The House of Lords upheld convictions for offences of causing actual and grievous bodily harm in the case of Brown [1994] 1 AC 212 which involved a group of sado-masochists who had engaged in consensual torture. The threshold that the clauses have set is very high, so while those taking part might argue that they had consented to it, such consent is not valid at law.

( What "most people" (unsupported assumption) feel is abhorrent doesn`t justify removing a human right from others. Acting/ pretense is not illegal. It`s perfectly possible to create such images via legal acts. It is not "likely" a "criminal offense" is taking place at all, especially since the HO, MOJ, Salter etc could not produce a solitary example of any images being created by real abuse. "Brown" cannot support a case for compatibility over images created thru legal actions.)


804. In the case of images of staged activity, the Government believes that banning possession is justified in order to meet the legitimate aim of protecting the individuals involved from participating in degrading activities. This is also the case with images of bestiality, which while involving harm to animals can also involve the non-consensual participation of humans who are harmed in the process of making the images.

( It`s a government job in a "free" society to stop/protect people from taking part in "degrading"- but not illegal ("staged") activities", eh ? The bestiality bit is thrown in to confuse the issue as real bestiality is illegal, unlike real life staged pretense of anything covered by this act)


805.The Government considers that the new offense is a proportionate measure with the legitimate aim of breaking the demand and supply cycle of this material, which may be harmful to those who view it. Irrespective of how these images were made, banning their possession can be justified as sending a signal that such behaviour is not considered acceptable. Viewing such images voluntarily can desensitize the viewer to such degrading acts, and can reinforce the message that such behaviour is acceptable.

( How can a ban in one country materially "break" (not just reduce, they say the DPA can "break" it!) supply and demand? This is followed by a bunch of assertions masquerading as facts and subjective moral tut tuttingI As, in law acting/pretense is not illegal, therefore is legally perfectly acceptable, the prohibition is often of an image created by perfectly legal means.So where does "not considered acceptable" come from - it certainly has only limited application to the DPA - images created by actual abuse, of which the HO/MOJ and the law`s polemicists couldn`t produce a solitary proven example.)


806 The Government considers that the restrictions on this material also achieve the aim of protecting others, particularly children and vulnerable adults, from inadvertently coming into possession of this material, which is widespread on the internet."

( As the legislation can do nothing to remove images from the internet or make them less accessible, this justification is irrational. How on earth can the DPA measures prevent anyone "inadvertently" coming across images given the international nature of the internet? It`s purely a law about individual private possession, not blocking websites etc)

Harvey    [30446.   Posted 28-Oct-2014 Tue 05:54]
  phantom

Maybe some misunderstandings.

I`m not convinced the HR approach will deliver anything.

There is a legal principle, quite separate from any specific right, that a law must provide those subject to it with the ability to regulate their behaviour thereby. It doesn`t follow that a law relating to images must be definintive in relation to any specifc image. Consequently there is a "chilling effect" where in order to regulate his behaviour, a person makes sure he doesn`t possess images that may be found to be extreme, rather than being able to know definitively which ones are and which ones aren`t. In extremis this would mean not possessing any images at all. If the law was so vague that it prevented a law abiding person possessing any images at all, it would invite a challenge on the basis that it infringed the rights to privacy or self expression. So the question is whether s.63 is so vague that to avoid being caught by it, a person`s human rights are infringed.

In the absence of any specific guidance from the DPP, the test for bringing charges are twofold; that there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of gaining a conviction and that a prosecution would be in the public interest. If someone thinks that`s insufficient they need to say why.

It`s the last point where I think there is mileage and it`s nothing to do with HR. It`s that the offence is disproportionate to the aim of the legislation. You are right that in the context of the HRA and ECHR there is the concept of certain rights being limited where necessary and proportionate but that`s not what is meant by disproportionate in this context.

The govt carried out a *Regulatory* Impact Assessment, where they defined the behaviour they wanted to address and concluded that this would result in 30 or so cases a year coming before the courts. That there have been many hundreds - up to a thousand a year - suggests that s.63 is catching much more than the behaviour the government intended.

But as I say, it`s two edged, it could equally be said that the behaviour the government intended to address was far more prevelent than they imagined.

Asking for an HR Impact Assessment may just be a lever to get at the scope of s.63. The trick with a JR is eliciting a decision about which the legality can be questioned. The government`s acceptence of the original Impact Assessment cannot be JR`d. Application for JR must be made within 3 months.

The HR approach would only deliver if it resulted in a declaration of incompatibility and I think that is unlikely, for the reasons given above.

phantom    [30445.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 17:32]
  Harvey,

Well, in the three points outlined on the obscenitylawyer page the aim seems more targeted at human rights breech, from what I gather.

"1. The term "extreme" pornography is not clearly defined in the legislation; and therefore a potential defendant would not be able to understand anticipate if being in possession of certain images might be illegal;

2. There is insufficient guidance from the DPP as to when these offences will be prosecuted;

3. The offence is disproportionate to the legislation`s intended aims."

I`d say point 1. and possibly point 2. aim at the need for clear law under human rights. Nulla poena sine lege.
Meanwhile 3. seems aimed at the issue of proportionality which allows exception for moral laws, - as long as fair and proportionate.
Stating that the law is unclear and disproportionate seems to me to be taking a swing at the DPA via HRA.

"Hodge Jones & Allen LLP have asked that the Secretary of State for the Home Department carries out a Human Rights Impact Assessment in relation to S63 CJIA 2008."

The above seems to suggest they`ve asked Theresa May (the mellow, fair minded, warm hearted one in cabinet) to check this law is compatible with human rights.

So this doesn`t seem to drive at impact assessments or consultations being faulty.
From my understanding it suggests that the angle taken is that this law is in strict contradiction of human rights.

Thus one wonders. If it is found that people`s human rights were infringed - and we`re talking over 5500 prosecutions here - then one can but wonder whether there should not be some sort of comeuppance for those who foisted this upon the populace - when clear, unambiguous advice existed, which quite clearly stated this was in breech of human rights.

Harvey    [30444.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 17:00]
  phantom

I think the angle that Backlash and Myles Jackman are taking is that the impact assesment was faulty and they are hoping to take that to a JR. A finding of that kind would be similar to a finding that pre-legislation consulation had been faulty or inadequate. It would not necessarily mean that ministers or back bench promoters of the law had been at fault, far less that they had behaved unlawfully. But it may mean that the DPA had to be reviewed and a new impact assesment carried out.

The impact assessment is two edged, so even if Backlash get as far as a JR/review care would need to be taken. One interpretation of a larger than anticipated number of cases being prosecuted is that the problem of extreme porn is far *worse* than previously thought so the need for a law is *even more pressing* than originally envisaged. If you doubt me, just wait for the DM headlines of loony High Court judges/ECHR scuppering the extreme porn law, allowing thousands of deviants to run around, with the police powerless to act.

Therumbler    [30443.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 16:04]
  I too share the distaste for the CPS`s tactic of waiting for the accused to cave in.

phantom    [30442.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 14:06]
  "Mr Holland, who was denied contact with his young daughter for more than a year, said: `I lost my job, I had to move and I ended up having a heart attack with all the stress of it,` he said. `People were ringing me in the middle of the night."

"Three young lads turned up at my door and were calling me everything. I was threatened on more than one occasion."

When I read the two above statements I can`t help but be struck by one impression. The accusation under the DPA seems to be what the government would term an `incitement to hatred`.

Some may recall that recently I pointed out that the government wanted to make `revenge porn` illegal as it deemed it `ruined people`s lives`, but it failed to see that unsuccessful prosecutions do the very same very efficiently.
But I guess it can also be said that the government actively promotes what it claims to outlaw; namely to incite hatred.

It seems under English law you are not allowed to incite hatred against homosexuals, members of other races or religions. But you are entitled to incite hatred against those accused of government defined `perversion`, whether innocent or not.

Causing people to turn up at someone`s front door and then hurl abuse at them, or call them in the middle of the night to do the same, I would say was government sponsored incitement to hatred.
Mr Cameron calls it a judicial process.

phantom    [30441.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 12:27]
  Harvey,

You`re the most legally minded person on here by some distance.
Would you know what is the legal position regarding introduction of bad law?
I mean, if the review finds the DPA wanting, would ministers involved in the introduction of this abomination possibly be liable?
Or can they - as I suspect - claim some parliamentary immunity?

You see, if we claim that other political despots (Milosevic, Mugabe, Assad, Hussein etc) do not enjoy immunity and can be legally held accountable, then what about our own? Especially if they`re found to have breached human rights law.

--

As for the letter to the PM, I wonder what precisely the reaction will be. After all, I believe the Etonian toff currently ensconced in 10 Downing Street wants to expand the very law which is being challenged.
So I`m not sure how kindly it will be received.
Meanwhile, the head of the CPS is a political appointee, no? So again, one cannot see that particular figure wanting to disrupt the political bandwagon in the Tory campaign to garner female votes for the general election (that`s what they believe they`re doing).

Thus I suspect there will not be a voluntary review and it will need to be challenged via a judicial review.

Harvey    [30440.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 09:01]
  MF Dave

Regular readers of this forum will know that CPS turning up in court and offering no evidence is something I`ve ben banging on about for quite some time.

Whether it`s a tactic, or just a sign of incompetence, it has been on the increase and there is apparently no sanction to be taken to stop the CPS from continuing to do this.

There is a distinction as far as the Criminal Justice system is concerned between a case where charges are withdrawn, as in the case of the NotMuslim OAP, and one where the CPS offer no evidence at trial.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30439.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 08:18]
  Only vaguely related to the Tiger Porn case but I just happened to spot another case of a seemingly innocent man being punished by the CPS with a no hope prosecution being dropped only on the eve of a trial. I am guessing that this is a widely used tactic.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2808822/Ordeal-OAP-quipped-m-not-Muslim-airport-security-stopped-Man-spends-six-months-facing-racism-charges-case-finally-dropped.html

Harvey    [30438.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 07:31]
  "Widespread ignorance of the law very evident."

We musn`t forget thet Tiger Porn Man faced two charges. The one in relation to the Tiger Porn was dropped by the CPS, but he still faced trial on the second which was an alleged depiction of a life threatening act. As advised by his legal advisers, he pleaded guilty to that charge and would have been convcted had he not contacted Backlash, and Myles Jackman got involved, advising him to change his plea to not guilty. Having done that the CPS, surprise, offered no evidence and he was acquitted.

The CPS dropping a charge as soon as they realise there is no evidence is one thing. Persisting with a prosecution all the way to trial and then offering no evidence is far, far worse.

As for the Daily Mail and the rank hypocrisy of flogging the tragic victim angle, as cash generating click-bait. No mention in the article that the Mail was a prominent campaigner and supporter of Liz Longhurst and instrumental in bringing in the wretched law. FFS.

freeworld    [30437.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 06:22]
  Daily Mail report on Tiger porn. Comments are interesting. Widespread ignorance of the law very evident.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2809143/Bus-driver-spent-six-months-bail-extreme-pornography-laws-sent-film-woman-having-sex-tiger-prosecutors-drop-charge-discovered-animal-just-man-costume.html

Harvey    [30436.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 05:45]
  Tiger Porn Man- A lawyer writes.

http://obscenitylawyer.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/tiger-porn-victim-bites-back.html

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30435.   Posted 27-Oct-2014 Mon 02:38]
  The Dangerous Pictures Act is set for a Judicial Review over the tiger porn case

http://www.backlash-uk.org.uk/judicial-review-of-extreme-images-law/

jackdeth    [30434.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 14:44]
  A little piece on the Unconditional Surrender statue controversy and the language of feminazis.
http://deaftoamerica.wordpress.com

braintree    [30433.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 14:06]
  Can you imagine if we woke up one Friday morning to find our PM was Ed Milliband? Would any country in the world take us seriously . I definitely don`t want Labour in again ( they are responsible for most of the mess we`re in) but it`s strange how they must realise that it was having Kinnock as leader that cost them votes in 1992 yet they don`t realise that Milliband is their second biggest handicap after their loony policies.
There is so much wrong with this country it`s impossible to know where to start to put things right . Russell Brand is right though when he says the current system does not work and most people realise that all politicians are much of a muchness with none worth a penny . But with the whole corrupt system voting for it`s own pay rises and ways to keep the gravy train rolling via their own agenda , how on earth can we start from scratch ?

phantom    [30432.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:54]
  The problem surrounding current censorship proposals is that, those pushing them are presenting them to the parties as means to `win female votes`.

Every time an election comes around pollsters identify particular key groups which need to be won to secure victory in the general election.
This time they have identified certain sections of the female vote.

Thus those with an agenda are selling their policies to the parties as the only way to secure these women`s votes.

The main decision makers, clueless as ever, are buying it.
As if banning things were a specifically female ambition.

Thus, as both major parties see their intentions to ban and punish as a means to win power, neither will be willing to listen to any criticism of these `key aims`.

Thus the libertarian argument is - as it has been for the last twenty years - screwed.

phantom    [30431.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:48]
  freeworld {30425}

You do understand that it would be very easy for Farage to distance himself from such statements.
They are not official UKIP policy.
It really is that simple.

Much of the personnel at the top of UKIP is made up of old Tories, mostly from the right wing of the party.
It is very hard to imagine those folk suddenly `going soft` on drugs, stripping and porn.

One simple quote does a policy not make.
If it did, then Blair would have been `a pretty straight sort of guy`.

phantom    [30430.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:44]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) {30424}

The problem with the idea that the emergence of UKIP might put pressure on the established parties to buck up their act is past performance.
The other parties simply don`t do that.

At this present period, the parties are struggling to gain any sort of majority in British politics as it is, with or without UKIP.
This would put them under much greater pressure to reform than the rise of Nigel Farage.

So too, catastrophic election defeats simply do not make them reconsider. If anything, they feel it was the electorate who was at fault.

After the defeat of John `back-to-basics` Major, how many times did the Tories return with the same personnel, expecting the electorate to change its mind? They even presented us with Michael Howard as prime ministerial candidate.

Meanwhile, now Labour are in the same boat. But for one or two positions their entire front bench is made up of Gordon Brown`s front bench.
Thus, having been punched on the nose by the electorate has changed nothing. Just as it didn`t with the Tories in 1997.
It is hard to find a single policy in Labour which is proposed now, which wouldn`t have been proposed by the Brown government.

In short; pressure and defeat does simply not reform these parties.
If it did, then the advent of coalition politics would have brought about a step change immediately.
If anything, it only polarises them yet further.

For all the threats to the dominance of Tory and Labour, politics has been getting worse, not better.

The emergence of UKIP has done little more than to raise the profile of immigration in the political debate.

We have seen the emergence of smaller parties at the last election, most notably the LibDems, but so too the Greens. but it might absolutely no difference.

Why the arrival of UKIP should now change anything, I do not see.

freeworld    [30429.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:36]
  phantom {30428. Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:27}
Jool the fool might be better off cultivating a hatred of sugar. I regard this wommun as a legitimate subject for raillery, saying she spends her life ranting out her poisonous opinions in public which demonize men and egg on the destruction of our liberty by a slimy political class which gives its ear to the likes of her far too much.

phantom    [30428.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 09:27]
  Sabreman64 {30426}

Julie Bindel hates porn?
I wonder why she might hate films full of naked, attractive women...

I present exhibit A, m`lud.
http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2012/5/7/1336385068454/Julie-Bindel.jpg

freeworld    [30427.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 03:49]
  Sabreman64 {30426. Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 03:40}

Bindel`s "Why I hate men" rant is from 2006.

Isn`t hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation a crime? Is this fat old trout guilty of it here? Is the Garundian guilty of spreading hatred based on sexual orientation? Imagine the Guardianista reaction if the Daily Mail or UKIP website created a headline saying "Why I hate Jews", "Why I hate Muslims", "Why I hate the Irish", "Why I hate queers", "Why I hate women"!

Men are are more likely to be victims of serious violence in real life. In popular culture - comics, tv, film are filled with far more evil men than evil women, those being killed and beaten up etc in these are overwhelmingly male.

Women are far less likely to go to prison for exactly the same crime a man will be imprisoned for.

A number of women seem to be drawn irresistibly to male brutes who treat them appallingly - despite all they stay with them. The Pistorius case has highlighted this sort of thing recently. He was controlling, unstable, and violent - he frightened her.But Reeva continued to share this odious thug`s bed. By Bindel logic Reeva Steenkamp is culpable in her own murder as she took no action herself to get away from Pistorius.

Until it`s understood that fundamentally the most extreme feminists regard any and all male/female sexual relationships as non consensual rape - an issue of one, the male, being "in power" over the other, the female, and thus only homosexual relationships where this "inequality" they fantasize about doesn`t exist, can be acceptable and correct, it`s not possible to comprehend the twisted totalitarian attitudes they take to issues of porn, definitions of "rape" etc. Of course, this patronizes women, seeing many of them as basically stupid children, "victims" tending to often be incapable of knowing they`re really victims. Like the New Labour home office chillingly using the term "nominal consent" (a spin off from Marx`s "false consciousness" theory) in their DPA consultation. Ideologically they are dangerously deranged.

Sabreman64    [30426.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 03:40]
  Man-hating* feminist Julie Bindel wants to rid the world of porn:

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/oct/24/pornography-world-anti-porn-feminist-censorship-misogyny

She comes out with the old argument that getting rid of porn will end violence against women. Presumably, in the olden days, before things like porn and Page 3, violence against women was non-existent.


* http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2006/nov/02/whyihatemen

freeworld    [30425.   Posted 26-Oct-2014 Sun 03:37]
  phantom {30423. Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 15:53}

Nigel Farage interviewed by prissy Telegraph journo in 2010 -

"Lap dancing? Don’t have the time these days, but I used to go to them. Like it or not, they are a fact of life. You are talking about normal behaviour there. Everyone does it.’

Do they? I never have.

‘Why not?’

Because it’s exploitative, demeaning for both parties and tantamount to prostitution.

‘Prostitution and lap dancing are not the same thing, they can be but not usually.’

But aren’t conservative-minded politicians like him supposed to believe in family values?

‘Yes, but I am also a libertarian. I think prostitution, for instance, should be decriminalised and regulated. I feel that about drugs, too. I don’t do them myself but I think the war on drugs does more harm than the drugs themselves. I am opposed to the hunting ban and the smoking ban, too. What have they got to do with government? The one thing I cannot be accused of is hypocrisy.’

Love the - "Don`t have the time these days"

- imagine Miliband/Cameron saying that!

Melon Farmers (Dave) {30424. Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 23:34}

Criminalizing all sex payers. I think you can be fairly certain Labour will attempt this if in government. Whether they could get it through parliament with a possibly quite thin majority is another matter.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30424.   Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 23:34]
  Phantom

Re UKIP

I don`t for a moment figure that UKIP are worth supporting for their policies. However to me, the point is that having them around as a threat may mean that the ruling parties (tories alternating labour) may be forced into doing a little more for the people, rather than implementing policies for their own pleasures. So the point is that the threat of UKIP may force the other parties into doing a better job, and hence should be nurtured.

Re Yvette Cooper

I interpreted the news as being that labour HAVE accepted the policy of criminalising buying sex. The debate about putting it on the conference stage is more whether this should be included as a manifesto policy to be debated during the election run up. In the end I reckon that they decided that the policy should be secret and not announced until they were elected. There is no way that Cooper could have even considered a conference announcement of something that was not an agreed policy. You simply can`t spring a surprise like that on your own party in a conference speech

phantom    [30423.   Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 15:53]
  Freeworld,

Regarding UKIP I think we all need to beware not to interpret our wishes into a new party that`s come along.

Just because they oppose the established parties does not mean they in essence oppose everything those parties stand for.

Meanwhile a look at some of the personnel suggests they are quite representative of the establishment.
Neil Hamilton does not quite strike one as an anti-establishment rebel.
I also doubt he`s the type who`ll suddenly go all easy on all things terrorism or taste and decency.

So really we can only judge them on censorship from what they`ve actually committed themselves to. As of now, that is nothing.
On the censorship and civil liberties issue, UKIP are a blank sheet.

phantom    [30422.   Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 15:42]
  I`m not sure about the Labour would ban buying for sex headline, Dave.
Sure, with Yvette Cooper, Harriet Harman, Dianne Abbott, Maria Eagle, Angela Eagle, etc, it`s hardly surprising that this policy is rearing its head again.

But in all fairness to Labour, the article in question merely points out that Yvette Cooper seemed to have scratched making that announcement at the Labour party conference.

Her not having said it, doesn`t really therefore mean Labour intend to do it.

Personally I have no doubt that they would, given the chance.
But this conviction of mine long predates this non-announcement.

But the non-announcement itself is really just that. It doesn`t cast any more light on the issue. And Labout would deny it was their intention. Specifically because they did not announce it.

freeworld    [30421.   Posted 25-Oct-2014 Sat 07:51]
  Voting UKIP myself - not that it makes any difference who I vote for in national elections, as I`m in one of Labour`s safest seats in England. I once sent young Mr Cameron a letter saying why I could never support his party, listing May`s assaults on civil liberties, the great repeal fib etc (didn`t add personal stuff, that I have chronic illness, but Duncan Smith still took my incapacity payments away and has halved my income). I agree with UKIP on the likes of immigration (the consequences of the political classes` own policy of limitless immigration/no proper border controls, plus their warmongering, is the major excuse/justification for the appalling assault on everybody`s civil liberties) and the EU. They`re the nearest we have to a significant party with some tendencies towards libertarianism, freeing the individual from the bully state. Nige actually went into a lap dancing club and said he enjoyed it, can you imagine any of the mainstream party leaders admitting to that - the hatchet faced harridans would be demanding their resignations. Carswell was a main guy in the great repeal "campaign" - which Dave and Nick (god, what a disappointment he is - good time Charlie was preferable) binned after all the phony fanfare in 2010. UKIP aren`t ideal, too many narrow minds. But I would guess a lot of Kipper`s "support" for laws against porn/bans is skin deep; probably a lot of them don`t properly understand how deranged and dangerous (dangerous quite possibly to THEM) our laws have become since they were perverted by totalitarians. The "ban it" tendency here is not the same as the ideologically driven totalitarian extremism you get from the female gender "warriors", and from male ideologues like Straw, who infest Labour. UKIP are the only bunch who aren`t thoroughgoing statists among the parties with any chance of exercising real power.

Interesting blog reporting a debate between blogger and Jule Bindel -

http://sexandcensorship.org/2014/10/report-debate-vs-julie-bindel-essex-university/

As part of the fightback against the puritans, sanctimony peddlers, gender Nazis and prodnose banstibators, I humbly suggest, words being so important, that the loaded one "pornography" be dropped by anti censorship folks and replaced by a softer far less loaded and abused one - "erotica".

phantom    [30420.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 17:09]
  I would say that the five year fixed term, introduced by this current government, is symptomatic of the very problem I describe.

What possibly could a government be introducing in its fifth year, for which it has a credible democratic mandate? what which it promised five years earlier has it not been able to introduce before now?

We need shorter terms for governments, not longer ones.

phantom    [30419.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 16:59]
  Dave,

The problem is, we need a change in political system, in political culture.
Any party which succeeds in this political environment is going to be crooked by default.

The very thing UKIP always complain about - political accountability - is what is wrong. Except UKIP only see the problem in Europe, whereas it is much bigger here.

Of all the prohibitions introduced, which are ever announced prior to the election? In short: for which bans do they actually have any political mandate? None.

The pre-election debate circles around the same five or six subjects which the politicians and the press feel comfortable talking about; preferably in vague terms of general ambitions and aims.
That in effect is all the information the public get, prior to voting.

Then suddenly lots of laws which were never mentioned emerge out of the woodwork.

Examples? What mention was there of `revenge porn` or `rape porn` in the general election? In truth, not a word. Thus the populace was not given a chance to vote against it, should they have not wanted it.

Of the over four thousand offences introduced under thirteen years of Labour, how many were ever announced in the elections? Exactly.

One of the foremost reasons for the utter disillusionment of the public in UK politics is that 99% of the political output has nothing to do with the five or six subjects they are willing to talk about in the run up to an election. (NHS, Immigration, Tax, Europe, yadda yadda....)

Our politicos have simply nudged the system into a state whereby they make very general statements about the NHS and the likes and then start introducing stuff which bears no relation at all to these airy-fairy subjects.

As for UKIP, they just keep telling us how they don`t like Europe. and Nigel Farage drinks lots of beer in pubs.
But why on earth should we not believe that he and his mates, on day one of taking office, would not immediately start introducing lots of crap which they never mentioned.
The fact is, they must rule it out. Explicitly. Otherwise we can assume they might well do it. And `it` can be anything. From banning ice cream vans to introducing BBFC licencing of T-shirts.

We all understand that the government in power is the only authority who can respond, on behalf of the nation to arising events. Therefore it is understood that governments might find themselves having to do things which they have not announced prior to an election.

But introducing new offences and prohibitions is not responding to events. It is simply creeping into a position of power under the radar and then letting loose upon the population a secret manifesto.

In the past when the parties forwarded a limited number of policies once in government, the current system sort of worked ish.

But in these days of hypergovernment (In short: ever since the Blair days, when `a-policy-a-day` was introduced) the democratic process has utterly stopped working.

The entire democratic process has been subverted.
UKIP are not an answer to this. They are merely another symptom.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30418.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 16:29]
  Phantom I agree, but still think it would be worthwhile giving the current politicians a once in a life time kicking. Maybe they would then devote a little more time to what the people want, not what big business/political extremists/police want. Switching endlessly between Tories and Labour does not achieve this. It just may help if there is an `you`re (all) fired` button available just in case.

phantom    [30417.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 16:12]
  The problem with that is, Dave, that UKIP have not really committed in any meaningful way to not being as proscriptive as the other lot.

They all evoke pretend problems in the public`s imagination which they then `solve` with another law banning something.

On how to do this, just watch the `Party Games` episode in `Yes, minister` to see how Jim Hackers `solves` the Euro-sausage problem. :)

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30416.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 16:06]
  Phantom, well if I don`t like it I will vote UKIP, it seems to be the only thing in town that may stop labour and tories treating the people like shit who need to be jailed for whatever petty excuse they can dream up.

phantom    [30415.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 15:57]
  Hmm... one wonders...
What will be the next item to crop up in party political ban bingo?

Smoking porn?
Criticism of politicians?
Page 3?
The wrong kind of books?
Films by Steven Spielberg?
Newsnight?
Any mention of Julian Assange?

After all, we need protecting...

Therumbler    [30414.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 15:49]
  https://twitter.com/ObscenityLawyer

Myles Jackman says that there`s going to be a big government announcement in the coming days. I dread to think what it could be.

cm comics    [30413.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 11:19]
  http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-London/2014/10/21/British-Court-Convicts-Man-of-Possessing-Child-Pornography-on-Basis-of-Stash-of-Manga-Cartoons

looks like the attack on manga has started, the first case were the cartoons are not the low hanging fruit. funny how little press there was about it.
espeshley how important a test case would be on the matter

freeworld    [30411.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 10:00]
  From the Guido Fawkes blog. The nutters are already in the process of criminalizing customers but not the retailer in Stormont for Ulster, cheered on by Evangelical god botherers. The Justice minister opposes it, but is outnumbered. Yvette Cooper looks like a terrifying gender extremist who makes Harman pale in comparison.

http://order-order.com/2014/10/24/yvettes-plan-to-criminalise-the-worlds-oldest-profession/

phantom {30409. Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 20:15}

Let us remind ourselves of that piece of legislation out of the Blunkett home office (that paragon of moral integrity being godfather of the DPA and the RIPA too) which redefined rape law - leading to all the now familiar turmoil over consent and "rape is rape", redefined legal to consent 16/17 year olds as children, and made such terrifying ordeals as a bottom touch etc into a "sexual assault".

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/libertycentral/2009/jun/01/sexual-offences-act-2003

Remember to vote Minibrain in 2015 everyone....

Harvey    [30410.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 07:58]
  But we were shouting from the rooftops at the time, that whatever was being claimed the new law(s) would catch, the offences were being defined in such a way that they would catch people who only had cartoons and drawings.

For that reason the laws were bad then, and they`re bad now, but they were pretty clear. An informed lawyer shouldn`t need to wait until a conviction is handed down before telling people they should burn all their Anime.

In truth, the police aren`t going to spend time and effort searching out collectors of Japanese comics. But if you become of interest to them for any other reason and they have a weak or non-existent case, dangerous cartoons is something they can use against you to make sure they get a result.

phantom    [30409.   Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 20:15]
  Harvey

"If there`s a time to argue about what the scope of the law should be it`s before it`s enacted, rather than after the first prosecution."

But the time should never arrive where we stop shouting it from the roof tops, that what the law is being used for is not what they actually said these laws would be used for.
According to the politicians who introduced the statue this was not its supposed purpose.

Damn the statute and what it says in the fine print. For it is a wicked law.

Over to Spencer Tracy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_DQUAuNUvw
1min20secs

"I say that you cannot administer a wicked law impartially. You can only destroy. You can only punish. And I warn you, that a wicked law, like cholera, destroys everyone it touches - its upholders as well as its defiers."

It is my firm conviction that these laws are a pure evil. They are a poison. To my mind the lying, deceitful vipers who introduced them ought to be incarcerated for a great length of time. Not merely for the injustice they have foisted upon others, but so too for the lies and deceits by which they have corrupted the political process which produced such laws.

But so too do I think that the police and - even more so - the legal profession must also bear responsibility for this. They cannot brush this off as someone else`s law which they are merely enforcing.
Want it or not, they bear a moral responsibility for their actions.

After all, the judges at the Nuremberg show trials also would have argued they were merely enforcing the law. Someone else`s law. Nazi law.

But at some point one cannot simply abrogate responsibility for destroying people`s lives, whatever part within this destruction one plays.

And yes, I cannot believe that anyone involved in this case could credibly claim not to know what the politicians claimed this law was meant for. To play out a lie like this is to partake in the lie itself.

Harvey    [30408.   Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 15:53]
  phantom

You surely don`t need the "Wow".

It`s no surprise to me that there has been a conviction for posession of prohibited images. We said at the time that thiswas aimed directly at catching anime and manga, rather than "closing the loophole" whereby images of acual childreen were being rendered as drawings.

And so it has proved. The first sucessful prosecution is for posession of Anime cartooons.

The comments from Angelus, miss the point. Firstly he`s referring to the wrong Act. This was not a prosecution under the DPA (otherwise know as Section 63 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008). This was Section 62 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009.

Now, whatever was claimed at the time - that this was about catching those who possessed images which would be caught by the OPA if published - that was NOT what was actually enacted. For s.62 says a "prohibited image" is one which is "pornographic", focuses on a (imaginary) child`s genitals or anal region, and is; "grossly offensive" or "disgusting" or "otherwise of an obscene character". It is very clear, that it will catch the merely disgusting (whatever that means) and not the criminally obscene.

If there`s a time to argue about what the scope of the law should be it`s before it`s enacted, rather than after the first prosecution.

phantom    [30407.   Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 15:30]
  re: Is it all politicians can do, dream up new ways to imprison anime fans?...

Wow. There we have it.
We`re now knowingly convicting people for things for which the laws supposedly weren`t meant.

Just like good Nazi henchmen, who were `only following orders`, our law enforcement agencies have got a good excuse; they`re `only following the law`.

No matter that the law is patently unjust. No matter that it clearly was never meant to catch comic book collectors and the likes.

What matters is solely that a law exists that says that possession should be punished. So punish we do.

So there you go. Nobody need think for themselves. Courts need show not an ounce of wisdom. They need only partake in the wild-eyed witch hunt.

If anything symbolises the bankruptcy of the legal system, it is this case. We now find guilty people who we know were never intended as the target. Just because we can.

phantom    [30406.   Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 15:19]
  Harvey

Yes, the 50`000 figures seems to wonderfully round and convenient.
But that`s why a grew a little suspicious.
It may well be the police spokesperson explaining why his force can`t do any more, but that in itself might be an indirect bid for new powers/rules/laws.
After all, who believes that going on the media and announcing 50`000 paedos are getting away with it will not cause a stir?
So if you`d want to cause a stir, that`s what you`d do, right?

On the other hand, there may be another, somewhat oblique angle on this subject. For every paedophile prosecution, how many front doors get bashed down? Given that the police appear never to smash the door down of anyone innocent (i.e. one always finds `something`), how many charges and convictions on such things such as `extreme pornography`, etc would the justice system have to cope with in order to catch 50`000 paedophiles?

In short, might it in fact be that the system simply can`t cope with processing another 250`000 folks in order to `get` those 50`000 paedos?
Perhaps creating those catch-all offences by now coming actually hinders catching the paedophiles.
I wouldn`t be surprised.

Harvey    [30405.   Posted 21-Oct-2014 Tue 12:21]
  phantom

The 50,000 figure is a bit ingenuous.

It`s an esitmate of how many people accessed indecent images last year. I`ve no idea how the esitmate was arrived at, but let`s be clear that these are not 50,000 known individuals.

What the cop is actually having to excuse is that he doesn`t have the resources to investigate the much smaller number of named suspects which the NCA are aware of. In recent weeks it came to light that two individuals who have been convicted of more serious offences, were suspected of having accessed indecent images as a result of being on the Operation Spade list, but were never investigated. Spade was the investigation by Toronto police of a company called AZOV which had been selling `naturist` videos as streamed downloads and DVDs by mail order.

The problem with Operation Spade is that it produced a lot of names (thousands) in up to 50 countries, but yet again, not all the names had been buying material which could be classified as indecent images of children.

There was a big fuss when it emerged that one on the list was a German MP, who had had his home raided by police, when he had only purchased legal material.

Thee was a similar fuss, but on a bigger scale in the US where a nude (i.e. non-sexual) image of a child is legal to possess. The cops had riaded purchasers of the `naturist` videos, but then found actual pornographic, sexual images with which they obtained prosecutions. Big debate about whether the search was illegal, as it was based on the purchase of legal material, and therefore whether material found in the search should be ruled inadmissible as evidence. It wssn`t and there have been a huge numer of convictions.

Any way back to the UK cop. He needs to explain the embarassment as to how a couple of paedos have apparently slipped through his net. His explanation is that there are so many suspects, he can`t investigate them all. He must prioritize. Which is true, as there are hundreds of names on his list and no way of separating the paedos from the rest. But not the 50,000 which is the figure he`s got the press to run with. Which is the art of spin.

phantom    [30404.   Posted 20-Oct-2014 Mon 12:36]
  BBC going berserk over 50`000 paedophiles `who`ll get away with it`.
The utterly discredited Jim Gamble on air once more.
One can`t help but feel that the ground is being prepared for something again....

phantom    [30403.   Posted 20-Oct-2014 Mon 12:34]
  Harvey

I think we both can see that we won`t agree here. :)

But just because I feel a little misrepresented here, my objection against the offence of marital rape was never because I considered it merely a private matter.
I object to the state intruding into the private sphere per se.
But I do so especially if it is in an area where the defined offence is effectively un-provable.
Once upon a time I seemed to have been far from a lone in this view.

And as for the underlying cause for the erstwhile exception on marital rape, again we`ll just have to disagree. As such the arguments have been made. No reason to repeat them.

Harvey    [30402.   Posted 20-Oct-2014 Mon 03:54]
  phantom

I tend to agree that the state should not be involving itself in matters which are essentially private.

Perhaps where we differ is in the definition of what is and isn`t private.

My view is that if you commit murder or rape or child abuse or slavery or theft, even if it is within your own home, it cannot be considered as an essentially private matter as it affects another person.

The exception for marital rape was never because the state saw it as a private, rather than a public transaction, but becaue it clung to the idea that marriage gave a husband specific rights in respect of his wife.

Therumbler    [30401.   Posted 19-Oct-2014 Sun 15:16]
  I don`t think the `revenge porn law` will affect naturists. The proposed law requires distress to be intentional, not merely a consequence.

phantom    [30400.   Posted 18-Oct-2014 Sat 16:14]
  Harvey [30399]
That`s almost a response worthy of a politician, Harvey. :)
A statement of interest. But a somewhat loaded one.

The truth on my part is I prefer a state that is kept out of as much of our lives as possible. Especially the threshold to the private home to my mind represents a profound boundary.

Now sure, I know you`ll argue, what about murder and other mayhem in the private home? We know that not everything is excusable by the fact that it happens not in a public space, but in a private one.

But the reason for an intrusion into the sacrosanct private sphere better be a good one, in my view.
Anything that is questionable from the outset, or possibly will do more harm than good, is best kept well away.
(This feels odd, as I`m effectively recounting much of the arguments I heard rehearsed way back when.)

I guess much hinges on the fact of just how much of a sacred principle the private sphere represents to you. To myself it represents one of the non-plus-ultras.

To use good old fashioned Anglo-Saxon verbiage, once across the threshold the state can fuck off.
It`s one of my primary drivers when it comes to my opposition to all things censorship.

I still recall stating in my missives to the ministry when opposing the Dangerous Pictures Act that public morality has no place in the private sphere.

It is also why in a recent debate on here about public nudity I sided with the state`s right to prohibit things. It is where to my mind, the private becomes public, because it is in public.

It goes without saying that my desire to keep a person`s private space private also has me clawing at the wallpaper whenever the government grants itself yet more snooping powers.

I guess, my default setting towards authority is distrust.

Thus the idea that the suspicion of a nigh un-provable offence can bring down the state on a private home is to me anathema.

To my mind the state is a beast which is to be kept at bay, tethered and muzzled.

In many ways I guess I feel myself proved right insofar that, having let the state into the private sphere more and more, we now face a state which feels emboldened to `send messages` by means of law and increasingly tell us what we may or may not do, view, hear, read, etc...

Harvey    [30399.   Posted 18-Oct-2014 Sat 14:28]
  phantom

It`s interesting that rape within marriage is something which you think the state shouldn`t be be involving itself with.

sergio    [30398.   Posted 18-Oct-2014 Sat 03:33]
  Man speak with forked tongue! Anyone listen to sonicstate talk on youtube? Well a contributer ` Gaz Williams (http://gazwilliams.me/) wore an indian feather headdress and got a some aggro from some chat client members.

On this one https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bS3OuGgpv6U

phantom    [30397.   Posted 17-Oct-2014 Fri 14:08]
  re: Headdresses

I do not give a hoot about American sports, but - as of now - please consider me an ardent supporter of the Washington Redskins!

phantom    [30396.   Posted 17-Oct-2014 Fri 14:07]
  Harvey [30395]

No worries, Harvey.
I`m not expecting you to be up and running on Swiss law. :)
It was simply of particular interest at the time, as the debate brought up many examples of the state of the law in other countries.
It is why one got a fairly good impression of how things worked all across western Europe.

It`s well over twenty years ago now, but the general picture back then was that marital rape was deemed unworkable as a law. Religiosity or tradition did not come in to it. It was simply regarded as un-provable. Moreover it was one of those areas the populus did not seem to want the state involved. (This latter sentiment I particularly like.)
But I`d bet my bottom dollar most, if not all those countries, now all have it on the statutes as a prosecutable offence.
So as you say with Germany, these days no difference is seen between rape within or outside of marriage.

The Swiss are one of the most politicised countries on earth, precisely because they are always asked to vote on things.
At times thus the debate can be at quite a high level. (That said, at times it can - as everywhere - be abysmally low.)

In that regard the Swiss do show a tendency of wanting to know how it`s done in other countries to get an idea of the `current state of play`, so to speak. It is the one thing which is so dreadfully absent in UK-politics.
The only ever time you hear other countries mentioned is when someone advocates this or that proscription in order to follow the example of Scandinavia...

But we never get to hear the current state of immigration law in France or Germany, or present censorship in the Netherlands or Belgium.

In that regard we are considerably more insular than that little nation in the mountains. An island we may be indeed, but we are supposed to be a metropolitan trading nation, a former imperial power, open to the world. Whereas the Swiss have a reputation as `little Switzerlanders` with a rather closed off view of the world.

Harvey    [30395.   Posted 17-Oct-2014 Fri 02:12]
  phantom

I wasn`t aware of the arguments in Switzerland. In England and Wales, the effective exception that allowed marital rape was retained because it was seen as an indivisible part of marital rights.

Rape as defined in UK law is difficult to prosecute, full stop. This is because often the burden is on a prosecutor to prove a lack of consent and proving a negative or non-existence is inherently difficult. But I don`t see why it is made more difficult if the rape is by a husband of a wife.

Other legal codes define rape differently on the basis of a presence of additional factors such as force, threat, co-ercion, etc, rather than an absence of consent. That does make the prosecutors job easier, but it may mean that when defined this way, a marital rape becomes more difficult to prove than an equivalent rape which occurs outside marriage. It`s possible that in Switzerland the legal code is/was such that it was actually more difficult to prosecute marital rape. I haven`t checked what the Swiss legal code is/was. I do know that the German legal code, which does define rape in terms of force or threat, makes no distinction between marital and non-marital rape.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30394.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 17:52]
  Glenn

I have not seen it but there are two film clips within the film. The short films from which those clips are taken are included in their entirety as part of the set, one of these is cut. More than an extra but not quite the main film.

Glenn Quagmire    [30393.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 16:51]
  I`m slightly confused about the censorship applied to "Found". I`ve seen the uncut version but there was no scene of an erect penis in it. However, I noticed that the board classified the DVD extras at the same time. I`m wondering if the four seconds that were cut is from this instead rather than the main film.

phantom    [30392.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 15:47]
  Harvey [30391]
I recall quite vividly how this particular subject was a political hot potato for a while in Switzerland, where I grew up...
The Swiss do that very un-British thing of often comparing their national codes and political ideas to those of various other countries.
They can be very insular at times, but at other times very keen to know that the rest of the world is doing.
As we know Switzerland is the country of the plebiscite and strong sentiments exist there against the power of the state.
The overwhelming argument which was trotted out again was what of an impractical law, whereby the allegation of sex without consent in an area where sex is effectively common place would be nigh on impossible to prove and lead to no end of mischief.
Furthermore there was the view that the intrusion of law itself into this area was simply not welcome.
It was generally regarded at the time that the state was to be curtailed in its manifold attempts of getting across the private threshold.
Absolutely no one argued that marital rape was somehow acceptable due to conjugal rights, etc. Nor did any single voice evoke religion, tradition or the likes.
The impression one got of public feeling was that it would cause more trouble than it would solve and that the police, the state - and the effing lawyers - should be kept at arms length.

Harvey    [30391.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 14:10]
  phantom,

At the risk of taking this discussion too far away from freedom of speech/censorship, I don`t see why marital rape should be seen as more difficult to prosecute than rape outside of marriage.

I can see the point about not making a law to counter something which is impossible to prosecute. But in the case of rape within marriage, the law based on cultural and religious ideas about the position of a wife in a marriage existed as recently as 1991 in England and Wales*. If you believe rape in marriage is wrong, even if it was difficult to prosecute (and I don`t actually accept that is/was the case) that is no excuse for retaining legislation to specifically excuse it.



*It was held in common law that marriage gave the husband conjugal rights over his wife. Though judge made, common law conjugal rights meant that consent was implied. It was judges who made the law based on marital rights, not the difficulty of prosecuting marital rape. It was the Law Lords which redefined the extent of marital rights.

phantom    [30390.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 12:17]
  Harvey {30389}

"Actually there were long standing cukltural and religious ideas about the satus of a wife within a marriage and the lack of a law against rape reflected that probably more than a percieved difficulty in enforcing it."

I think the reasons behind not prosecuting rape in marriage did shift over time.
At first, I`d agree with you, they related more to the fact that the wife was effectively the husband`s possession. This was the position of ancient law, backed to a considerable degree by religion.

However, it hardly moved from this position to outlawing rape in marriage.
I believe the position arose quite early on in 20th century whereby the biblical/cultural position was abandoned for that of it being an un-provable offence.

One might argue that is a purely semantic difference, but it actually represents a considerable shift in moral position.
The former effectively condones marital rape. The latter condemns it, but simply forwards the notion that banning it would effectively be pointless.

I actually agree with that latter position.
I believe it was the position of most western democracies in the latter half of the twentieth century.

I do not believe in utopian law. Nor do I believe in law which `sends a message to society`.

To my mind law is supposed to support universally accepted, incontrovertible truths and is to follow the medical motto of `do no harm`.
Today it is however subject to much more superficial concepts and ideas.

These days Moses would not descent Mount Sinai with Ten Commandments, but 4347 offences, 5212 regulations and 7653 guidelines;
including rules on where to place lads mags on shelves of super markets, pre-watershed expletives and permissible song lyrics.

Harvey    [30389.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 09:18]
  phantom,

the only thing I would disagree about, is your choice of rape within marriage as an example of a law too far, based on the difficulty of prosecution.

Actually there were long standing cukltural and religious ideas about the satus of a wife within a marriage and the lack of a law against rape reflected that probably more than a percieved difficulty in enforcing it.

Otherwise what you say is right.

I don`t actually expect the prosecutors to act completely honourably or even more honourably than a defendant. What I do expect is that when they are seen to be acting in breach their own rules, they are held to account. Laying charges and then offering no evidence should be dealt with as a contempt of court.

phantom    [30388.   Posted 16-Oct-2014 Thu 08:34]
  Harvey [30387]
Actually, there once was an age when one was considerably more careful about the creation of new law. To the point where one actually accepted that certain acts of which one disapproved were taking place, but that the prosecution of such in law would be troublesome, if not impossible.

The prime example I can think of there is rape in marriage.
It was simply deemed a virtually un-provable offence, thus it was not banned under law in a great many countries.
Whatever one may think of that approach toward that offence in law, it shows that there was a considerable reluctance to introduce law into areas which were nigh on impossible to prove and where the intrusion of law may cause damage itself.

Nowadays however politicians are seized of the idea to introduce law in order to promote a utopia. We must strive toward an ideal, no matter how abrasive toward individuals or how impossible in practice.

Aristotle`s famous maxim, `there can be no morality without practicality`, has been abandoned wholesale.
What matters now it solely what ought to be.

Meanwhile, the damage law causes is excused with pretty much the approach you forwarded in your post, Harvey.
If you wish for there not to be any damage caused by unsuccessful prosecutions you`d have to abandon prosecutions per se.

The fact that the prosecution service is not acting honourably is completely discounted. (presenting no evidence at trials)
Also the fact that bad law causes real harm is never accepted.
The mantra is simply that good citizens stay within the law, no matter what. Thus the innocent have nothing to fear.

The truth however is that we have long since passed the point at which only the guilty need fear law. In plenty of law the attribution of guilt by now is a mere matter opinion anyway.

Law in itself has in many cases become an agent of harm.

Trying to argue this harm to be harm suffered for a good cause or excusable harm does not stop it from being harm.

The ultimate irony is that some of this harmful law purports to be intended to prevent harm.

What underlies it all is a huge deficit in wisdom of those introducing ever more law.
The law designed to catch tomorrow`s positive tabloid headlines will need to be endured by future generations.
Bad laws are in fact as toxic to the nation`s future as the national deficit.
Yet the politicians responsible are as cavalier about them. They misguidedly believe that any mistakes cane be easily ameliorated or reversed at a later date.

The very fact that they themselves excuse their actions with the possibility of future amendment or reversal indicates that they do not wholeheartedly believe in the permanence of their law.
Law it no longer a truth set in stone. It is an attempt.

Lacking the wisdom and insight to recognise truth, one is simply fishing for it.

Harvey    [30387.   Posted 15-Oct-2014 Wed 14:35]
  phantom,

some fair points.

If there is a problem, it`s where the government see making a new law as the cheap and easy way to be seen to be "doing something".

But unless you want to do away with criminal offences entirely, there will always be cases of prosecutions which don`t result in convictions. They are only "unsuccessful" when they fail to convict a person who is guilty. When an innocent person is acquitted, it should bee seen as the trial process working properly, but as you say the damage is done.

I too find it odd that cor is able to see the emotional damage to a person who is tried under the DPA, even going as far as to say their lives are ruined, but unable to see that the same kind of emotional damage can be inflicted in other ways. When that damage is inflicted intentionally, it probably does fall into the same category as intending to inflict a physical injury, and we do expect the criminal law to address that.

I just think you need to take great care about when and how you extend the criminal law. Even where you do identify some genuine mischief which is criminal in nature, if you find yourself having to make tortuous definitions and exceptions, and exceptions to the exceptions, you have probably not identified the real nature of the mischief you are trying to legislate against.

phantom    [30386.   Posted 15-Oct-2014 Wed 13:52]
  Actually reading Car and Harvey on `revenge porn` it strikes me that the government is considerably more clear about what revelations they think can cause a person harm than they are willing to accept regarding the prosecution.
The DPA has been mentioned... and how much harm an unsuccessful prosecution can cause.

Oddly the harm by prosecution is pretty much identical to the type of harm the government is so keen to prevent by introducing a law against `revenge porn`.
However, it doesn`t seem that anyone in government seems to be making any connection at all.

It seems fairly clear that the cumulative harm done by unsuccessful prosecutions - together with the self evident harm done by the successful ones - actually far outweighs the hypothetical harm supposedly done by the pornography the DPA seeks to ban.
I don`t even think that`s a matter of opinion anymore. It seems fairly obvious at one thousand prosecutions per annum.
Nonetheless the government is content to continue doing harm there.

But how quaint that they ought to be keen to prevent people `having their lives ruined` because of `revenge porn`...




Harvey    [30385.   Posted 15-Oct-2014 Wed 11:22]
  cor [30382]

I understand your points, but I think I`ve made mine as clearly as I can, so I won`t repeat myself.

Obviously, in your case, if the intention was to cause distress, it would be caught by what is being proposed. OTOH, if the law was in place the a person would have to think carefully about what they were making public and they would do so in the knowledge they they would be comitting an offence i.e. their choice, frely made. It would be entirely up to you to decide whether the distress you suffered warranted making a complaint.

As for the CPS, it is their job to prosecute as forcefully as they can where there is evidence. It`s also entirely right that a defendant makes just as forceful a defence and statement of mitigation. It`s the judge who we rely on to act imprtially. Yes, you are right that there have been prosecutions under the DPA. Some have resulted in convictions but there have been acquittals and convictions quashed on appeal, as well, but damaged lives in the process. The big difference with the DPA is that at no stage is the prosecution required to show that the defendant caused or intended to cause any harm at all.


Therumber [30383]

Thanks again.

Good grief! The government tying itself in knots, struggling to define what is and isn`t a sexual image.

If an image is private, nobody should have the right to publish it without consent. If it`s published with the intent of causing harm, either that`s a crime (as I believe) or it isn`t. It shouldn`t depend on whether the image meets some cooked up definition as to whether it is sexual or not, ffs!

Some time ago there was a tragic accident where children were killed and some of the press obtained and published private photographs of the children involved. That caused distress, and as private photos, the press had no right to do what they did, yet this isn`t the right kind of distress, apparently.

Why are governments totally obsessed by sex?

sergio    [30384.   Posted 15-Oct-2014 Wed 01:09]
  It`s lawyers overtime ....

`(3) A photograph or film is “sexual” if—

(a) it shows all or part of an individual’s exposed genitals or pubic
area,

(b) it shows something that a reasonable person would consider to be
sexual because of its nature, or`

Ankles!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And I am a reasonable person!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Therumbler    [30383.   Posted 14-Oct-2014 Tue 14:25]
  Update on the revenge porn law. This amendment appeared today:

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/lbill/2014-2015/0043/amend/am043-h.htm

“Disclosing private sexual photographs and films with intent to cause distress

(1) It is an offence for a person to disclose a private sexual photograph or film
if the disclosure is made—

(a) without the consent of an individual who appears in the
photograph or film, and

(b) with the intention of causing that individual distress.

(2) But it is not an offence for the person to disclose the photograph or film to
the individual mentioned in subsection (1)(a) and (b).

(3) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to
prove that he or she reasonably believed that the disclosure was necessary
for the purposes of preventing, detecting or investigating crime.

(4) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to
show that—

(a) the disclosure was made in the course of, or with a view to, the
publication of journalistic material, and

(b) he or she reasonably believed that, in the particular circumstances,
the publication of the journalistic material was, or would be, in the
public interest.

(5) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to
show that—

(a) he or she reasonably believed that the photograph or film had
previously been disclosed for reward, whether by the individual
mentioned in subsection (1)(a) and (b) or another person, and

(b) he or she had no reason to believe that the previous disclosure for
reward was made without the consent of the individual mentioned
in subsection (1)(a) and (b).

(6) A person is taken to have shown the matters mentioned in subsection (4) or (5) if—

a) sufficient evidence of the matters is adduced to raise an issue with
respect to it, and

(b) the contrary is not proved beyond reasonable doubt.

(7) For the purposes of subsections (1) to (5)—

(a) “consent” to a disclosure includes general consent covering the
disclosure, as well as consent to the particular disclosure, and

(b) “publication” of journalistic material means disclosure to the public.

(8) A person charged with an offence under this section is not to be taken to
have disclosed a photograph or film with the intention of causing distress
merely because that was a natural and probable consequence of the
disclosure.

(9) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not
exceeding 2 years or a fine (or both), and

(b) on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding
12 months or a fine (or both).

(10) Schedule (Disclosing private sexual photographs or films: providers of
information society services) makes special provision in connection with the
operation of this section in relation to persons providing information
society services.

(11) In relation to an offence committed before section 154(1) of the Criminal
Justice Act 2003 comes into force, the reference in subsection (9)(b) to 12
months is to be read as a reference to 6 months.

(12) In relation to an offence committed before section 85 of the Legal Aid,
Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 comes into force, the
reference in subsection (9)(b) to a fine is to be read as a reference to a fine
not exceeding the statutory maximum.”

“Meaning of “disclose” and “photograph or film”

(1) The following apply for the purposes of section (Disclosing private sexual
photographs and films with intent to cause distress), this section and section
(Meaning of “private” and “sexual”).

(2) A person “discloses” something to a person if, by any means, he or she
gives or shows it to the person or makes it available to the person.

(3) Something that is given, shown or made available to a person is
disclosed—

(a) whether or not it is given, shown or made available for reward, and

(b) whether or not it has previously been given, shown or made
available to the person.

(4) “Photograph or film” means a still or moving image in any form that—

(a) appears to consist of or include one or more photographed or
filmed images, and

(b) in fact consists of or includes one or more photographed or filmed
images.

(5) The reference in subsection (4)(b) to photographed or filmed images
includes photographed or filmed images that have been altered in any way.

(6) “Photographed or filmed image” means a still or moving image that—

(a) was originally captured by photography or filming, or

(b) is part of an image originally captured by photography or filming.

(7) “Filming” means making a recording, on any medium, from which a
moving image may be produced by any means.

(8) References to a photograph or film include—

(a) a negative version of an image described in subsection (4), and

(b) data stored by any means which is capable of conversion into an
image described in subsection (4).”

“Meaning of “private” and “sexual”

(1) The following apply for the purposes of section (Disclosing private sexual
photographs and films with intent to cause distress).

(2) A photograph or film is “private” if it shows something that is not of a kind
ordinarily seen in public.

(3) A photograph or film is “sexual” if—

(a) it shows all or part of an individual’s exposed genitals or pubic
area,

(b) it shows something that a reasonable person would consider to be
sexual because of its nature, or

(c) its content, taken as a whole, is such that a reasonable person would
consider it to be sexual.

(4) Subsection (5) applies in the case of —

(a) a photograph or film that consists of or includes a photographed or
filmed image that has been altered in any way,

(b) a photograph or film that combines two or more photographed or
filmed images, and

(c) a photograph or film that combines a photographed or filmed
image with something else.

(5) The photograph or film is not private and sexual if—

(a) it does not consist of or include a photographed or filmed image
that is itself private and sexual,

(b) it is only private or sexual by virtue of the alteration or combination
mentioned in subsection (4), or

(c) it is only by virtue of the alteration or combination mentioned in
subsection (4) that the person mentioned in section (Disclosing
private sexual photographs and films with intent to cause distress)(1)(a)
and (b) is shown as part of, or with, whatever makes the
photograph or film private and sexual.”

----

I believe this is the government proposed amendment.

cor    [30382.   Posted 14-Oct-2014 Tue 11:54]
  Harvey[30381]
"I`m nowhere near to suggesting that `invoking emotion` should be made a criminal offence."
But this is exactly whats happening.. if you wanted a law against driving people to suicide that would be one thing. But what is being proposed here is a disproportionate and life destroying option for many people who may exaggerate `distress` to inflict a death blow to their former partner for the crime of breaking up with them...

"The penalties range from a fine to a maximum 2 yrs"
And the cps will go after as much as they can get. You think this will be `applied fairly and proportionally`, or `only used in exceptional cases`, these are the slogans that accompanied the DPA, i don`t need to tell you how many lives that law has wrecked.

"Would the incident where your pictures were posted online be covered by the proposed offence?"
Yes, i was distressed, and she meant to distress me... I`m not sure a judge would have given her the full two years, but an emotional call to the police and that would have been taken out of my hands. And her life could have been ruined all for trying to get back at me. -See what i mean about escalation.

"Could you prove to a court that you had suffered "distress"?"
The bar is set so low you need only ask if the judge (a reasonable person) would be distressed by such a picture being posted online. Its not that you have to prove you are an average person, only that average people are generally upset at being seen naked (upset being synonymous with distressed).

Harvey    [30381.   Posted 14-Oct-2014 Tue 04:23]
  cor

"we shouldn`t make invoking emotion illegal just because emotion can lead some people to do stupid things."

But that`s not what`s being proposed.

I`m nowhere near to suggesting that "invoking emotion" should be made a criminal offence. I`m looking only at criminalizing an act carried out with the intention of causing harm.

"What would you tell the parents of a girl who killed herself after her boyfriend broke up with her calling her fat.... "

It would depend crucially on what the boyfriend inteded. For example, if he knew that his girlfriend was clinically depressed because she thought she was fat, then he`d be aware that the comment would actually be harmful, rather than merely insulting. If that was the case, I`d tell the parents that the boyfriend bore some of the responsibility for their daughter`s death. I`d be interested to know what the coroner said at the inquest.

The penalties range from a fine to a maximum 2 yrs and bearng in mind the offence would have to cover cases where many images were published over a period of months or years, you`d probably be looking at a fine for a single incident of posting something private on your Facebook page.


Would the incident where your pictures were posted online be covered by the proposed offence?

What was the nature of the "distress" you suffered? Could you prove to a court that you had suffered "distress"?

My suggestion is that the offence should only made out where the posting is malicious, i.e. inteded to cause harm. Was that the case when it happened to you or was the intention just to `hurt` your feelings?

cor    [30380.   Posted 14-Oct-2014 Tue 03:10]
  Harvey[30377]

"difference between the publication of private images on your Facebook page and calling someone fat or stupid"
Subjective difference at best. I know some people who would rather have nude pics posted all over the place than be called fat... Also there is no shortage of suicides from people being called fat or stupid by people they loved...
What would you tell the parents of a girl who killed herself after her boyfriend called her a fat bitch.... Or do you think that should carry a two year sentence as well?

we can`t protect people from themselves most of the time, and we shouldn`t make invoking emotion illegal just because emotion can lead some people to do stupid things.

phantom[30379]
A girl i was seeing a few years ago shared some fairly graphic pictures of me online (even txt me the link lol), of course it was after i cheated on her with one of her friends, so some would think she had reason to `hurt` me. Now, if i was particularly vindictive (and if this law was on the books) i could have gotten her locked up for up to two years, ruined her life and given her a criminal record... is that fair?
The harm you are talking about is financial, the very thing that civil court specializes in, the harm that can be inflicted by two years in the slammer is far greater, hence the term `disproportionate` (as opposed to the term summarily dismissed).

phantom    [30379.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 17:48]
  cor [30376]

I`m not sure I agree with you there, Cor, that showing someone naked online is something that merely causes emotional harm.
Take Max Mosley. You can in fact pretty much ruin a person.
What would such a revelation do to, say, a school teacher?

Thus, a revelation of someone in any sexual context can thus be damaging. thus, meaning that the harm done is far from merely emotional. Albeit that I understand that it is not a physical assault, a person`s life, social standing, career can be seriously diminished.

But, as I pointed out with the whip`s office comment, I think the politicians are being quite spectacularly hypocritical on this one - given how they tend to operate.

But I do not think the phenomenon of `revenge porn` can just be just summarily dismissed as something which might temporarily upset people.

People have a right to privacy for a reason.
Odd however, how government here seems to agree with that principle, whereas in so many other cases....

phantom    [30378.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 17:39]
  re: crime creation

Hey there,
Interesting pointer to the minister for crime creation there, Dave.
But it might also be worth pointing out that this fascist, puritan scumbag (let`s call him what he is, shall we?) is an MP for the LIBERAL Democrat Party.
Obviously he`s one of those liberals who haven`t yet grasped what being liberal is supposed to mean.

Harvey    [30377.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 15:02]
  I`m not being sarcastic.

Yes, there is a difference between arson or an acid attack and hurt feelings. But there is also a difference between the publication of private images on your Facebook page and calling someone fat or stupid.

The latter may cause hurt feelings, the former is intended to cause harm.

You clearly don`t see a difference.

Otherwise you wouldn`t suggest that the civil courts can deal with emotional harm, while only physical harm should require criminal prosecution.

Quite apart from that, we have a basic right to privacy and a private life and while I don`t suggest that all breaches of privacy are criminal acts, those that are malicious (i.e. intend to cause harm) really should be.

How would you like to advise the parents of a teenager who killed himself when what he thought were private images of himself were posted on a social media site? Should he have saved up all the money from his Saturday job and sued? Or maybe just pulled himself together and got over it?

cor    [30376.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 14:40]
  Harvey[30375]

"it`s only emotional harm - just feelings and no big deal then? Because it`s not the same as physical harm it shouldn`t be an offence?"

Precisely, albeit without the sarcasm. There is a `hell` of a difference between hurt feelings and acid in the face -I`m just saying our laws should reflect this difference. And a good line in the sand that generally deliminates `hurt feelings` from `burnt face` is the one between the civil courts and the criminal courts.

Harvey    [30375.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 13:41]
  cor [30374]

What laws?

Blackmail and manslaughter?

What about assault?

I suppose if someone throws acid in the face of an ex-lover, or sets fire to their house (both examples of actual cases) we do have laws to prosecute it. Posting a private letter, or a photo with the intention causing harm, though?

But of course it`s only emotional harm - just feelings and no big deal then? Because it`s not the same as physical harm it shouldn`t be an offence?

cor    [30374.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 13:16]
  Harvey[30372]

"..can go way beyond simply hurting someone`s feelings."
And when such is the case, there are laws to cover these things, from blackmail to manslaughter... What we are talking about is only realy the cases that fall short of this and so are not covered by existing law (only emotional damage cases).

"One person trying to harm another[`s feelings] is EXACTLY the kind of thing which the criminal law is designed to confront...the "distress" can lead them to take their own lives"
This is a very good argument for outlawing infidelity .. it is intentional harm that can lead to suicide (and usually a great deal more harmful than publishing dirty pics)... So should we, by your argument, be calling for 2 years in jail for people caught having an affair?

As i said, this is an escalating emotional exchange between two adults. Extending into the civil court only to try and diffuse these situations is logical (if flawed). criminal court involvement (for the sake of hurt feelings) will only escalate everything further.

phantom    [30373.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 13:07]
  Harvey [30370]

No, I don`t think you quite get the jist of it, Harvey.
You can choose to take the goat shagging photo literally, and only restrict your imagination to that precise scenario, or you can view it a little more in the round.

We know that the whips like to apply pressure.
We know that they have a filth file on anyone they can get filth on.
So the issue hardly relates exclusively to goat photos. :)
The fact is their bringing pressure to bear only works, if they follow up their threat if the backbencher doesn`t pedal the latest line.

Thus if there is anything questionable available regarding an MP (naked webcam selfie, him in action with a woman who isn`t his wife, in fact any juicy photo they can get hold of, etc, etc... and yes, a goat!) then the question arises that if they are instrumental in seeing to it that this wayward backbencher gets his comeuppance, I suspect the law will prove to be worded by our lords and masters in such a way as to not include that sort of `revenge porn`. Just in case. :)

Harvey    [30372.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 11:24]
  cor [30371]

"You`ve just undermined the entire civil court system"

No. I`ve just pointed out that in the civil court the onry redress is by monetarizing "damage" and extracting payment. There are situations where it`s a suitable means of settlement, but civil litigation isn`t the solution to every kind of damage.

If it was just about hurting people`s feelings, I`d say the law should stand well aside. But "revenge porn" (or making other private things public) can go way beyond simply hurting someone`s feelings.

One person trying to harm another is EXACTLY the kind of thing which the criminal law is designed to confront. You may think that as it`s emotional rather than physical harm, creating a criminal offence is being "overzealous", but I disagree. The intention is to harm, as you have said, and for some people, the "distress" can lead them to take their own lives.

cor    [30371.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 10:43]
  Harvey[30370]

"What if a respondent hasn`t got any money?"
You`ve just undermined the entire civil court system .. or just highlighted how it should be proportionally applied lol.

Ultimately, this is about hurting peoples feelings. We are not talking about some film star that might loose jobs because of a leaked selfie.. Its just people at the end of a relationship each feeling emotional, and each trying to emotionally harm the other.. The civil court option is an imperfect extension of that process, getting police and criminal courts involved is imo an act of overzealous pseudo-chivalric lunacy.

Harvey    [30370.   Posted 13-Oct-2014 Mon 07:39]
  cor [30364]

It`s not really a problem of access to civil courts. The state could (if it had enough money) provide legal aid for litigants, but what about the costs of the loser? What if a respondent hasn`t got any money? There is nothing to be gained by taking them to court, even if you win damages.

In suggesting a criminal offence, I would put the bar fairly high, only catching that which was malicious, that is; done with intent to cause harm. I wouldn`t restrict it to pornographic images, as just as much harm can be done if other personal, private images or information, such as a private diary, are published.


phantom [30368]

"So if today they have photos of some backbencher shagging a goat..." they are committing an offence. DPA


Thanks Therumbler.

I have to ask;

1/ Why only sexual images? If the test is whether it causes distress, can`t other private images be as bad, if published?

2/ Why the need to show distress was caused? Surely if the intention was to cause distress, than the act of publishing is just as wrong?

3/ Why 2(c)? Surely if distress is caused when an image is published, further distress could caused by its re-publication. If the (re-)publisher reasonably believes that no distress would be caused by re-publication, he can rely on 2(b) and be found not guilty.

2(c) looks like it`s only there to allow the press, broadcasters, etc, to (re-)publish images from social media, etc EVEN IF they reasonably believe it will cause distress.

I would rewrite (1):

(1) It shall be an offence for a person to publish a private image of another identifiable person without their consent with the intention of causing distress to the person who is the subject of the image.

scratch the proposed 2(b) and 2(c) and replace them with:

2(b) can show an overriding public interest that the image be published.

Therumbler    [30369.   Posted 12-Oct-2014 Sun 16:26]
  Publication of private sexual images

(1) It shall be an offence for a person to publish a private sexual image of
another identifiable person without their consent where this disclosure
causes distress to the person who is the subject of the image.

(2) A person is not guilty of an offence under subsection (1) if he or she-—

(a) reasonably believed that the person who is the subject of the image
had consented to its publication;

(b) reasonably believed that the publication of the image would not
cause distress;

(c) reasonably believed that the image had previously been published;
or

(d) did not intend to publish the image.

(3) For the purposes of this section it is immaterial who owns the copyright of
the published image.

(4) An offence under this section is punishable by—

(a) on conviction on indictment, imprisonment for a term of not
exceeding 2 years or a fine (or both);

(b) on summary conviction, imprisonment for a term of not exceeding
6 months or a fine (or both).


http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/lbill/2014-2015/0043/amend/am043-g.htm

phantom    [30368.   Posted 12-Oct-2014 Sun 13:14]
  I wonder, will `revenge porn` also apply to the established parties whips offices, or will they be exempt?

Remember the revelations not so long ago about a BBC interview in which a former whip had told them how whip`s offices had made cases of sex with minors `go away` in return for loyalty.

So if today they have photos of some backbencher shagging a goat, surely his loyalty is only guaranteed if he fears they might enact a `revenge disclosure` once he votes against the party line.

Somehow I suspect `revenge porn` will only apply to former `couples`, don`t you? One won`t saw off the political branch one is sitting on.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30367.   Posted 12-Oct-2014 Sun 08:53]
  So the government will now create a standalone offence of revenge porn.

I wonder if the wording will criminalise an awful lot more than stated.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet/11156239/People-who-post-revenge-porn-on-internet-face-two-years-in-jail-says-Chris-Grayling.html

phantom    [30366.   Posted 12-Oct-2014 Sun 08:00]
  sergio [30365]

Yes, I`ve noticed how fiarly innocent US sitcoms are getting cut for really odd reasons these days on day time tv.
Big Bang Theory is also getting cut quite a lot in its daytime showing.
Just as with Frasier, I don`t really get how much of what is cut can be seen as unsuitable for family audiences.

But so touchy has everyone become in recent years that now anything can get cut - whether it screws up the continuity or not.

What is telling about the sentence you mention is that it is entirely the spoken word. Yet it is not rude per se.
The reason it is cut is merely due to the content it describes.
But described content should not really be subject to cuts.
After all, books are not age rated.
Thus what usually is cut is visual depictions of hookers being cut up and stuffed into bowling bags. But the mere mention of it should not be subject to censorship. Except it is by now.

This over-zealous self-censorship out of fear is a stark reminder of what will more than likely be coming our way on all fronts soon.
For let`s not forget that - thanks to our Etonian masters - music videos are deemed dangerous too now.
So too sport and documentaries....

I wonder how long it will be before WWII documentaries get cut for being `too hitlery`. The way we are going, it`s only a matter of time.

sergio    [30365.   Posted 12-Oct-2014 Sun 04:08]
  Frasier on Channel 4 at about 9Am sunday 12oct14 cut at about https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=IvG6FonuQTk#t=86

`I try to figure out why a maniac `ll kill a hooker and stuff her entire body into a bowling bag`

This line was just so bluntly cut, the laughs seem to not relate to anything.

cor    [30364.   Posted 11-Oct-2014 Sat 01:06]
  Harvey[30363]

"We really need a new criminal offence to prosecute the malicious publication of private information/data/images."

If we agree that a civil court could / should give out justice to these civil matters; but that the poor have no access. Surly the answer is to make the civil courts accessible to all, maybe by lowering the cap on expenses to a percentage of a means test... Hoofing this to the criminal courts will not bring more justice, just a requirement for a higher threshold of evidence and more disproportionate punishments.

Also i can`t help but consider the comparison with our intolerance of privacy violations, even if the fix would bind our `free` media in more restraints... but at the same time we seem happy with a restriction of our rights to access civil justice...

Harvey    [30363.   Posted 10-Oct-2014 Fri 06:37]
  phantom [30358]

Re Avenging Revenge

CPS is just suggesting that so called revenge porn could be prosecuted with existing laws on the sending of malicious/offensive communications rather than either needing any new law or resorting to using or revamping the OPA. Quite apart from which, an image which is merely indecent wouldn`t fall within the scope of the OPA.

I think the point is that the CPS are saying that by using the Communications Act, it is the message which is the relevant factor and that the act of publishing a picture of a former partner can be threatening, humiliating and menacing to that person, whether or not the image itself would be construed as indecent or obscene.

I`m not so sure that the CPS is on the right track, though. The aim of the Communications Act is to protect people from receiving threatening or menacing letters, emails, etc. The point of revenge porn is that publishing an image without permission of the subject of that image, harms the subject of the image, rather than the recipient(s) of the message.

But.. we shouldn`t be looking at yet another new law based on whether an image is pornographic or not. For me, "revenge porn" is just a special case of breach of privacy. It happens to feature images which may be pornographic, but the harm done is in the making public of something which is personal and private, with intent to threaten or humiliate. At the moment all we can do is make a civil claim for damages, but that`s really only an option for those of us who are wealthy enough to go to court. We really need a new criminal offence to prosecute the malicious publication of private information/data/images.

sergio    [30362.   Posted 9-Oct-2014 Thu 05:35]
  How can `revenge pornography` be false? Faces posted onto other bodies? Is that illegal?

sergio    [30361.   Posted 9-Oct-2014 Thu 05:32]
  I was interested in what Mr Vaz said on the daily politics. He said that people coming into UK should all be checked/scanned for ebola. A specialist (an expert) also on the prog says that it`s difficult to know if people have ebola unless they have blood tests.

So then Mr Vaz says (in my bad recollection) with words to the effect of "it is a political decision, that we should reassure the people".

So, he has a more or less useless idea but as a `politician` that is a good idea.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30360.   Posted 9-Oct-2014 Thu 02:41]
  Re Not a Love Story

Thanks Bleach. That`s a shame. I watched it via that link and found it a fascinating documentary.

Re definitions

I don`t think we are far off the situation where the CPS make both the definitions and the decisions. Even if the defendant is right the CPS can destroy your life by taking the prosecution to the brink and then withdrawing just before the tactic becomes visible to the courts

bleach    [30359.   Posted 8-Oct-2014 Wed 15:50]
  The youtube link has been removed\blocked from this:
http://www.melonfarmers.co.uk/hitshard18.htm#not_a_love_story

phantom    [30358.   Posted 8-Oct-2014 Wed 03:25]
  re: Avenging Revenge

Is it me or has the CPS outdone itself again with this fascinating definition?

"The issue in cases of `revenge pornography` will be whether the message or communication is grossly offensive, indecent, obscene or false, not whether the image itself is indecent or obscene."


Err... did they just use the terms `offensive` and `indecent` on either side of that argument?
So it`s a question of whether the communication is indecent or obscene, not whether the picture is indecent or obscene.
Wow, that`s cleared it up then. Thanks chaps.

Keep in mind these guys all went to the right schools, then uni and now earn the equivalent of a new Jag every month.

Worth every penny, no doubt.

phantom    [30357.   Posted 6-Oct-2014 Mon 13:06]
  sergio {30356}

`How would you prove it caused `harm`?

You call the BBFC. :)

sergio    [30356.   Posted 6-Oct-2014 Mon 01:00]
  `At your protest last Saturday, your supporters were screaming “rapist” at men walking into Spearmint Rhino`

Ok, so this seems like slander. Was this incident filmed? How does one get `justice` in this situation?

` For example, in the United States, the person must prove that the statement was false, caused harm, and was made without adequate research into the truthfulness of the statement.`
How would you prove it caused `harm`?

phantom    [30355.   Posted 5-Oct-2014 Sun 18:31]
  freeworld [30354]

"It really is frightening what is happening to this country, and the supine indifference to it all from the masses and most of the msm (until they themselves end up in the snares being constructed) is very disheartening.While in the USA the most rabid and powerful anti communist could not actually have stopped free expression if he wanted to, as free expression is fundamental to America`s written constitution, here a jack in office can do what they like if they decide to steal our liberty - and one doubts some bit of paper like the ECHR or the HRA is going to stop them.
Sadly I concur with much of your pessimism."

First off, no worries. I don`t feel patronised in the slightest.
I`m not sure I agree with your summary of the McCarthy situation, - not least regarding the oppression of those who saw things differently. a politician does not necessarily need to hold any official power in order to impose on others. Sometimes it is merely a question of how the establishment operates. In many a society constitutions and laws can be circumvented if those at the top collude with a nod and a wink.
It`s precisely what explains how others were those now fingered for silencing folks, not McCarthy.
Yet one doubts it`s entirely coincidence that his name rose to infamy.
And as for the commies coming close to snatching power. On struggles to see how that would eve have happened. - It no doubt very much depends on what one defines as a communist.
In any case, the fact that both McCarthy and McTheresa are symptoms of a reaction towards a feared ideology does nonetheless hold water... ;)

Anyhow, to the matter in hand.
Yes, the HRA is pretty much a pointless statute as it simply allows governments to rubber stamp any draconian law with the statement that they`ve checked and their law corresponds to HRA. As they don`t need to reveal who said so and whether any provisos were made, it`s utterly irrelevant when it comes to protecting the populace from the imposition of hideous law. For all we know it might have been the Downing Street cat which is credited with the legal checking of Blair`s laws against HRA...

But the fact that departure from ECHR and Theresa`s anti `extremism` proposals are voiced simultaneously is somewhat telling.
After all, under HRA it would be difficult to silence people outright, - even to silence the reporting of their statements by third parties.

But it does speak of a fear of an idea. `Islamism` is now some strange virus which can infect people. (Like communism once was.) The Tories seem to think it`s some sort of verbal Ebola. Thus any exposure to this virus must be made impossible, lest we otherwise all succumb to it.
It`s for our own good.

Well, they would argue it`s not to protect you or me.
No, it`s to protect young Asian men. Those with a lower immunity to the thing they believe a virus.

That what you hear and see can be harmful and dangerous is hardly a new concept in this country. It`s been bubbling along for decades in the form of censorship.
And there too it`s not you or I who need protecting.
No, it`s those unquantifiable `vulnerable people`.
The parallels are obvious.

So I think, far from it being `Islamist extremism` which is infecting folks, it is actually censoriousness which is jumping the species barrier here.

Having made a nest in film censorship for years, then having burrowed its way via child porn laws into adult pornography it is now mushrooming.
At the very same time that BBFC exemptions are falling like skittles, that internet filtering is running amok, we get mainstream censorship galore proposed by St Theresa...

In short, the faith that is censorship is spreading.
One believes that hearing or seeing something can harm you.
One believes that preventing people from seeing or hearing these things can save them.
Therefore, save them one will. With all the zeal of an Islamist extremist.
And the means and the cost are irrelevant.
After all, saving people is a universal good.
It is godly. The will of Allah. :)

Naturally the true believers do not see the obvious parallel to the very thing they claim to be fighting. Like all zealots they are blind to it.

We are now to censor those who - to quote Theresa of Arc - know how stay within the law when preaching their hatred.
Forgive me, but doesn`t `staying within the law` mean that you are exercising lawful free speech anymore?

No, it`s now a clever ruse by which people craftily break the law. By knowing how to stay within the law. :)

So Mother Theresa`s proposals are targeted at catching those lawbreakers who fiendishly stay within the law.

So, conceding that they are not breaking any law, we are now opting to silence them, - for not breaking the law.

But of course, this only applies to the most extreme of extremists.
Most likely there would only be about 12 actions like these a year.... ;)
Well, I`m guessing they`d say the above. After all, they did before.

St Harriet and St Theresa.
The two greatest threats to liberty in this country today.
The irony is, they even claim to oppose each other. :)

freeworld    [30354.   Posted 5-Oct-2014 Sun 16:50]
  phantom {30353. Posted 3-Oct-2014 Fri 16:32}

It`s really not accurate to label McCarthy an anti Semite or a racist. McCarthy`s chief committee counsel and friend, Roy M Cohn, was both a Jew and a "queer" (something McCarthy could not have failed to be aware of). Cohn would die from aids in 1986. Another McCarthy assistant, G David Schine, was also a Jew. McCarthy`s enemies tried, but failed, to ever find any evidence of him being racist. McCarthy`s downfall was actually largely due to his problems with his own troublesome Jews, Roy and Dave - because he stayed loyal to them he was compromised in his investigation of the Army - while his enemies sniggered that Cohn and Schine were obviously a couple of "fairies" ( communist writer Lillian Hellman called Cohn, Schine and McCarthy "Bonnie, Bonnie and Clyde" ). In fact McCarthy himself was, at times, "gay baited" by his political and press enemies during his career (the boot was on the other foot), though there was nothing to support the "slur". In fact, McCarthy`s major targets tended to usually be pretty WASPY types, often very powerful ones too - Secretaries of States Dean Acheson and General George Marshall, Philip C Jessup, John Stewart Service, Owen Lattimore etc - he even went for Eisenhower. Homosexuals were, along with alcoholics and even heteros with "messy" private lives, considered lifestyle security risks (subject to blackmail by foreign powers) at this time, so they would often be removed from sensitive government posts in the 50s - see the so called "lavender" scare.

To suggest that McCarthy/the "ism" severely curtailed free expression, as is being proposed now by May and her home office goons for Britain, isn`t, to my mind, a very apt parallel really - sorry to disagree on this, as I think you tend to write very perceptively and with good sense (not meant to sound patronizing! ). Nobody was stopped from freely airing their opinions then - censored by the state. The press wasn`t shackled. Walter Winchell`s pro McCarthy broadcasts were complemented on the other side by Drew Pearson`s relentless radio attacks on McCarthy. Herblock the cartoonist caricatured McCarthy as a political caveman in the papers. Most of the Washington press corps was anti McCarthy. Probably no American politician has been so subject to relentless press and political attack as McCarthy was himself during his "heyday". He was under constant congressional investigation from 1950 - 54. He had anything but an easy ride - the pressures finished him, he was dead at 48. Even network tv in the form of Murrow`s "See it now ", chucked the neutrality it was meant to operate with out of the window and devoted a whole show to a completely one sided assault against McCarthy.

All through this period, the US communist party itself, despite being funded largely by the USSR (ie a hostile foreign government) and under its direct control (and engaged in clandestine criminal activities in its underground) was never made illegal in the US! The Daily Worker continued to be free to publish. A handful of leading communists went to prison when Democrat Harry Truman was president, under a sedition law passed in the "liberal" Roosevelt era, not by McCarthy or some other "right wing Republican" (actually, aside from the communist issue, McCarthy tended to be a liberal Republican on many matters). McCarthy in the early 50s was simply a senator and committee chairman, his committee being concerned with matters of the federal government and its agencies - as chairman, he had no power to ban what people said, published or read - just to question witnesses, deliver opinions, and, with others, put together reports on the hearings. Witnesses were made aware of their constitutional rights when called before the committee. The US constitution and bill of rights, weren`t torn up. The "Hollywood" investigations (which had nothing to do with McCarthy, but is often mixed up with him) by HUAC in 1947 and the early 50s, led to a limited "blacklist". But it was an action by the entertainment industry employers, not some sort of US government job ban (the "Hollywood 10" themselves went to prison for contempt of congress, not for being communists or because of what they believed - few make an issue of gangsters like Frank Costello and others, who were also sent to prison for "contempt" because they wouldn`t cooperate with congressional committees, just like the 10 wouldn`t). The US government never had powers to order private industries/individuals not to employ certain people, nor to tell them what they could and could not say, or to suppress the publication of political opinion - which is what May is wanting in UK legislation. This is starting down the road which can end with the Goebbels ministry`s control of the whole German press/entertainment and Soviet practice, lurching towards Orwells` ministry of Truth - not a parallel with what happened in the US in the early cold war period.

The Venona transcript material, kept secret for 50 odd years, finally published in the 1990s, and other recent new sources, show that the 40`s communist defectors (Chambers, Bentley, Budenz) were telling the truth about the extent of Stalin`s infiltration and how high and wide it went - this idea has been ridiculed, minimized and dismissed for decades by many writing about the period, and those denials turned into "received wisdom"; but the "received wisdom" has now been proved to be dead wrong about the extent of the problem which existed over Soviet activities in the.US.(Hiss, a principal founder of the UN, was indeed a key Soviet mole, executed Rosenberg was a spy - truths long denied by many; Harry D White, the assistant director of the Treasury and Roosevelt`s top aid Lauchlin Currie - both were Soviet agents; very possibly FDR`s right hand man, Harry Hopkins, was as well). The state department and OSS were riddled with communist agents. If Truman hadn`t replaced Henry Wallace as Roosevelt`s Vice President, many of the Soviet agents would have been controlling much of the US state after FDR died. That`s how close it got to Stalin`s henchmen being in charge in the US from 1945. Yet communists were never banned from saying what they wanted to, their party was never "banned", despite the serious internal threat which existed largely because of Soviet controlled communist activities.

As we now have more laws than ever in the modern era to imprison people based on what they say/write, I fail to see what use the ECHR or the HRA can be in this regard. Look at what are "qualified rights " under the HRA, ie ones which are weaselly "balanced" by some proclaimed "right" of "the wider community"/ state to ignore these individual freedoms if it chooses to (the supposed collective can trump the individual) -

- Family life/manifesting your religion/free expression/freedom of assembly and association...

We`ve already seen in the post HRA years how when they want to pass laws which breach a human right in these areas they do it. Thus the HRA/ECHR seem to provide little defense against May`s proposed future assault on free expression - just about all that might spoke its wheels is a rebellion in the house of lords. As you suggest, Labour would do this in office (would very possibly be even more draconian) or be "me to-oing" the Tories as Cameron does it. So the "undemocratic" (Lords), as we have seen it do numerous times, challenges the supposedly "democratic" (the commons) when it comes to defending liberty - such irony.

It really is frightening what is happening to this country, and the supine indifference to it all from the masses and most of the msm (until they themselves end up in the snares being constructed) is very disheartening.While in the USA the most rabid and powerful anti communist could not actually have stopped free expression if he wanted to, as free expression is fundamental to America`s written constitution, here a jack in office can do what they like if they decide to steal our liberty - and one doubts some bit of paper like the ECHR or the HRA is going to stop them.
Sadly I concur with much of your pessimism.

phantom    [30353.   Posted 3-Oct-2014 Fri 16:32]
  freeworld [30352]

I`d actually not choose the DDR as the example here, Freeworld.
Although clearly the idea of the `forbidden thoughts` was clearly well at home behind the iron curtain.

But here I would rather see McCarthyism at work.
Just as in 1950s America, some elements of society feel threatened by an invisible foe.
So how does one react?
One seeks to clamp down on an idea.
In the USA it was the ill-understood, mysterious eastern menace of communism.
And here today it is the equally mysterious phenomenon of `Islamism`.

Just as frightened America handed power to a nasty individual in senator McCarthy (a sort of `bad guy, but our bad guy`), so nowadays we hand power to increasingly nasty home secretaries.

Just as McCarthy no doubt will have abused his commie hunting to crack down on `queers and Jew boys`, Theresa can`t pass up an opportunity to include `extremists` on her anti-Islamist rampage.

With it she is of course threatening to open up a chasm in English law. (Keep in mind that at the very same conference the Tories announced their intent to secede from the ECHR!)

It would be a chasm which a later Labour government would be keen to fill with lots of additional legislation on feminism and public morality.

But, worryingly, the citizenry finds itself in a bind. We are no doubt going to be taken in another pincer movement here. the British parliamentary system is at its most terrifying when both political wings agree.
I doubt very much that we`ll be able to avoid this oncoming juggernaut, because I`m convinced Labour will join in with Theresa.

Just as US democracy was effectively in crisis in the McCarthy days, so today our democracy clearly is in crisis.
It is hard to see it otherwise, when only a few weeks ago a considerable portion of the nation almost upped and left.

Our institutions and political traditions are clearly failing and ancient principles of governance and law are simply being chucked overboard by a political class which appears pretty clueless.
In fact our rulers seem of such low calibre, a solution is unlikely any time soon. In fact in the foreseeable future I only see things getting worse.

freeworld    [30352.   Posted 2-Oct-2014 Thu 05:14]
  phantom [30350. Posted 1-Oct-2014 Wed 05:47]

May`s speech and the briefing stuff that accompanied it were horrifying - an attempt at crowd pleasing populism for the hard of thinking, which contained proposals envisaging one of the greatest lurches into totalitarianism imaginable. She`s the worst home secretary I can remember - with the possible exception of Blunkett.

Once thought control "hate crimes" are created, extra judicial punishment by accusation like Asbos are brought into being, the political class has laid the basis for the totalitarian state. The foundations of a lot of this were in the New Labour years, now, predictably, the Tories carry it on, making bad worse.

“I want to see new banning orders for extremist groups that fall short of the existing laws relating to terrorism. I want to see new civil powers to target extremists who stay within the law but still spread poisonous hatred. So both policies‚ banning orders and extremism disruption orders ‚ will be in the next Conservative manifesto..”

- May at Tory conference

So bans etc/civil punishment for people who have not been convicted of a crime.

"A Tory briefing note made clear that the banning orders, which can include denying access to the airwaves and to the net, would be targeted not just at so-called hate preachers but also those who sought to “disrupt the democratic process” and “undermine democracy”.

- The Guardian

Well, that`s the communist`s freedom to blether publicly scuppered, along with those other nasties like Fascists, Nazis and Islamists.

".. the Home Office will soon, for the first time, assume responsibility for a new counter-extremism strategy that goes beyond terrorism.”

- May at the Tory conference

"(she said the aim is ) to eliminate all forms of extremism‚ including neo-Nazism and Islamist extremism".

- Guardian

Carry on cheering totalitarian Theresa, Tory conference idiots - but don`t be surprised when the police get on your case for criticizing immigration/homosexuality and you end up with an "extremist" banning order - though you`ve not been found guilty of any crime by proper due process of the law. Burble all you like then about it being an "outrage" in a "free country". In truth this hasn`t really been a free country at all for a long time. Be hoist on the petard you helped create, or didn`t try to stop. First they came for the Islamists...

If "call me Dave" is kicked out next year, one can expect exactly the same legislation as Morticia`s from Miliband. We are left with the hope that, as with May`s previous vile "super Asbos", the Lords - one of the few places where any significant concern for civil liberties seems to exist within the political establishment - stop these appalling proposed measures.

May`s home office is currently consulting on something similar to the previous, "emotional abuse" of "partners" (ie mature adults)being made a criminal offense punishable by years in prison.

There are, of course, enough laws around, if properly enforced and applied, to deal with encouraging terrorist violence and to put those threatening/encouraging violence against groups or individuals before the courts. We`ve had them for ages. But more recently we saw something else - the state criminalizing "hate", over certain issues. Such legislation sets a precedent for the sort of thing May is proposing; indeed it has opened Pandora`s box, can lead to the state potentially criminalizing any opinion which is seen as controversial, a minority view, or one that simply isn`t concurred with by the consensus of the political establishment. Just replace the subjective word "hate" with the subjective words "extremist/extreme".

Welcome to DDR Britain.

Therumbler    [30351.   Posted 1-Oct-2014 Wed 12:56]
  http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/art/offensive-banksy-immigration-mural-in-clacton-scrubbed-from-wall-by-council-9768354.html

An apparent anti-racist Banksy work destroyed on complaint that it was racist.

Some people have no sense beyond a very literal interpretation of things. Unfortunately, they appear to be ones who cry the loudest. Like the old saying goes, empty barrels make the most noise.

phantom    [30350.   Posted 1-Oct-2014 Wed 05:47]
  jackdeth [30349]

Interesting.
And I can see how these proposals could impact on such conspiracy theorists.
But I don`t think they are specifically designed to deal with them.

Far more, I think these measures are meant as a broad net which could catch almost any non-approved ideas.
Most frighteningly this would also include not politically correct speech.

To me it is self evident that it has nothing to do with terrorism.
Incitement to violence is already illegal.
But anything which challenges the established norm could fall foul of this.

Consider David Starkey stating on BBC`s Question Time that modern day so called youth culture is black culture.
Or John McCririck`s views on women.

If the authorities will have the right to override anyone from saying anything which might `radicalise` someone else, then it`s not that big a leap to see them gagging the Starkey`s and McCririck`s of this world.

And not to permit what the `bad` person has said to be broadcast, etc is perhaps even more sinister. Because it provides the means by which to censor the news.

jackdeth    [30349.   Posted 1-Oct-2014 Wed 04:44]
  phantom: It seems that the `extremists` May is referring to are conspiracy theorists.

This was conveniently left out of mainstream media reports in the frenzy surrounding Iraq last week.

http://deaftoamerica.wordpress.com/2014/09/30/un-declares-war-on-conspiracy-theorists/

phantom    [30348.   Posted 30-Sep-2014 Tue 06:34]
  Fresh news from the Conservative Party Conference:

Beware if you are a Melonfarmer!
The Hag of the Home Office is out to get you!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-29414574

So, more powers. And what for powers.
First off she wants the Snoopers Charter back.
But then she wants `extremists` banned from being able to voice their opinions, be it in the traditional media (anyone remember Sinn Fein voice overs?) or on the internet (yep, people could actually be banned from putting their unwelcome opinions online! And yes, that`s us, guys!).

Now of course, this is only the Home Secretary waxing lyrical about what she would like to do - if it`s a Tory only government after the general election. But it`s terrifying!
Not least as a Tory-UKIP coalition would no doubt implement it.

But aside from that, consider that `law and order` inflation only pushes the severity of measures upwards - on both sides of the political divide. In short: Labour are not going to be outdone for long on `being weak on extremism`, so they`re bound to follow suit.
And that will mean we have a `broad based political consensus`.

The policy is of course nonsense. You do not rid a nation of extremism by means of severity. If anything, severity causes extremism, it doesn`t cure it.
But then Theresa May is as severe as she is moronic, so one could never hold out too much hope there.

But the direction of travel in British politics is being spelled out quite clearly here.

Much along the lines of Michael Howard`s famous words on prison, spoken some twenty years ago, the egregious Theresa May has to all avail told the nation that `Censorship works!`
And apparently we need much, much more of it - right across all society.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30347.   Posted 29-Sep-2014 Mon 23:43]
  MichaelG

I think it is telling that the state is so arbitrarily negative about internet blocking. It is obviously all about moral censorship. If they really cared about the kids it would be reasonably easy for the state to set up a wide age verification scheme.

All you need is a single physical check or credit card transaction to your ISP and then your account could be set as age verified. I am sure this info could be encoded somewhere in the html protocol that the ISPS could verify on route so that webservers could then verify the setting and serve adult material accordingly.

MichaelG    [30346.   Posted 28-Sep-2014 Sun 13:11]
  Oh the irony... from one of the pioneers of default web blocking of adult material (BT) comes an article on my email login page entitled `how to delete your browsing history - Keep your web searches from prying eyes by wiping your internet footprint, whatever browser you use.`

Yeah, but if you don`t allow me to look at anything controversial, I surely won`t need to do this, right?

freeworld    [30345.   Posted 18-Sep-2014 Thu 02:57]
  phantom {30343. Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 14:59} #

Whether it`s the dangerous pictures sinister absurdity or ridiculous "rape" cases brought by the CPS, there is a tendency for juries to look at the nonsense "they" - what I characterize as the "enemy class" - are hoping to convict people over - and upset "them" by not returning the guilty verdicts they desire. This indeed shows the general common sense, genuine liberalism if you will, of many "ordinary people", which still hangs in there, despite the prevalent deceit/manipulations of the totalitarian ideologues now infesting politics, the legal bureaucracy and all those screeching pressure groups and phony "charities".

So, we are now seeing efforts to "educate" jurors by the likes of Starmer. If that doesn`t work as they want, next there will be moves by the "enemy class" to remove the jury system itself from certain sorts of cases where only self proclaimed "experts" "understand" the issue and can be trusted to make the "right" decision (there`s already precedence for this).

Of course, just the act of investigating people and taking them to court is probably fulfilling a lot of "their" purpose - the very process will shame/expose/potentially destroy someone, even if a not guilty verdict is the ultimate result of the court case.

I think the idea that an "independent" Scotland (if it happens) will get the equivalent of the US bill of rights is highly unlikely given the domination of the country by big government parties, and there being a still highly influential conservative church. What they may get is something reflecting the ECHR and HRA. As we know, having loopholes written into them, make many "rights" merely conditional not absolute under this legislation; in the case of the "enemy class" being determined on totalitarian measures, these supposed legal guarantors of our rights to freedom, are it seems, pretty useless.

sergio    [30344.   Posted 18-Sep-2014 Thu 00:59]
  Hurrah! So Symantec don`t block lgbtgddhs content only a bigger subset. Hurrah!

phantom    [30343.   Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 14:59]
  cor [30341]
Well, the very fact that there is not really a plan for such issues makes one doubtful.
Whether it`s Holyrood or Westminster, they never tell you that they`re about to trap your privates in the car door.
It`s always `friends, Romans, countrymen`... you know, gazing at the horizon stuff.
But if you believe they`ll be liberal you`re taking it strictly on trust.

My advice would be, if they haven`t actually promised it in some sort of cast iron policy manifesto, think the worst.
It is always dangerous to assume they`ll do the right thing - especially on subjects about which they`ve staid deliberately silent.
Never assume people in government will be reasonable and do the sensible thing.
We`ve assumed that time and again in this country and been proved wrong every time.

The truth is, there is a strong militant feminist element up there and they have a lot of clout. The Kirk and the Catholic church also still carry quite a weight still. I would be very suspicious of what that powerful lobby might get up to, if their political impact is suddenly exponentially increased - which it would be.
And as said, both major parties north of the border would be described as `big government` parties. That makes them more interventionist by default.

My fear is that Scotland would not become some sort of liberal Amsterdam, much as I would love to hear it.
Instead I fear there are reasons to believe this new nation would in fact head in the opposite direction.
Or should I say, its government would. Of the people in both north and south of this island I remain convinced that they are just about the most liberal on the planet.
But liberalism has no political traction in this country and thus I suspect other forces would prevail.

The independence of the Scottish judicial system has largely been a bit of a farce in the past, as the two systems have thus far always `coincidentally` levelled out in just about the same place all the time. (usually by copying the other`s excesses)
But once they are separated, it`s really anyone`s guess.

Reading the tea leaves, however, I would be very skeptical when it comes to censorship - especially `moral` censorship.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30342.   Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 14:33]
  Still watching Scotland getting excited about independence but I am totally at a loss where this excitement comes from.

Now from what I observe about various tiers of government:

Local councilors are a bunch of misery guts who want to ban all pleasure in life, generate shoddy legislation to micro manage people`s lives that `sends a few messages` but don`t give a stuff how it works in practice, and the harm it can do to people`s livelihood and freedom. It hardly even matters which party they are.

MPs are a bunch of misery guts who want to ban all pleasure in life, generate shoddy legislation to micro manage people`s lives that `sends a few messages` but don`t give a stuff how it works in practice, and the harm it can do to people`s livelihood and freedom. It hardly even matters which party they are.

MEPs and Euro politicians are a bunch of misery guts who want to ban all pleasure in life, generate shoddy legislation to micro manage people`s lives that `sends a few messages` but don`t give a stuff how it works in practice, and the harm it can do to people`s livelihood and freedom. It hardly even matters which party they are.

Why do Scots people think that their lawmakers are going to be any different? Surely there is so little chance of politicians being `better` that its not worth getting excited about.

cor    [30341.   Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 07:42]
  phantom[30340]
well, there will always be some idiot declaring this or decrying that, but the actual laws passed (and we`ve been passing laws for a while now) are, with the exception of the DPA, less draconian and petty than those of our Westminster counterparts... so the worst of the laws passed in Scotland recently were written to copy England laws.

Basically we`ve no idea what will happen once that influence gets lifted (or if it even will after a yes vote) - i just hope better representation and smaller government will translate into less legislation and more rights and freedoms (for both Scotland and England) .. but we will see.


Melon Farmers (Dave)[30338]
It is a wonderful opportunity to take a lighter touch with video regulation, let the industry sort out a rating system and let consumers choose it with their purchases... but you are right we will probably piss this opportunity away and immediately negotiate to keep the BBFC.

phantom    [30340.   Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 06:44]
  cor {30336}
Not sure there, Cor.
On this site alone I`ve read several times about this or that group on Glasgow council declaring the evils of pornography, etc.
I would be very surprised if Scotland would become more liberal due to leaving the UK. All the signs point to the opposite.
(i.e. both Labour and SNP seem to be talking about a `big state` approach in just about all areas)

Melon Farmers (Dave) [30337]
Yep, the SNP has successfully managed to make this contest about politics, rather than about nationality. And the three main parties have fallen into the trap.
The other day I actually saw an interview on the BBC with a guy with a self-apparent English accent who lived in Scotland and was going to vote for independence - because he wanted more left-wing policies.
That is how the SNP has managed to make this such a close race.
Questions of nationality and consequences thereof meanwhile have gone out the window.

Melon Farmers (Dave) [30338]

Interesting thought, that. And yes, it would seem that as a market 6 million Scots would just be too small.
Perhaps the markets would just assume that any Scots wanting stuff would order it from British suppliers south of the border.
And once the border controls go up, there might be folks hired to float DVDs across the legal border with drones. :)

And a similar note, one wonders whether the BBFC would reduce its prices by 10%. But then racketeers don`t really ever cut prices, do they? :)

sergio    [30339.   Posted 17-Sep-2014 Wed 01:39]
  I never heard of this - moral harm from the BBFC. The BBC afterwatershed prog didn`t say what the serbian film was about - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Serbian_Film

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30338.   Posted 16-Sep-2014 Tue 12:59]
  Re SBFC

This could be fascinating. with 10% of the population of the UK I bet there will be vast numbers of releases where it simply economically unviable to spend a grand on getting a film watched by professional film viewers. I bet they have to do something like accept BBFC ratings for use in Scotland. Or perhaps give up on pre-vetting for large chunks of the market.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30337.   Posted 16-Sep-2014 Tue 12:42]
  Re Scotland

Earlier this month the debate seemed to be something along the lines of `wanting` independence vs the `necessity` of having to be part of ever larger power blocks.

Somehow I think that this has all changed with Cameron, Miliband and Clegg joining forces. It has now handed to the Scots people a once in the life time opportunity to give a good kicking to the whole political elite that has been ruling Britain with scarcely a thought for the people in the last few decades.

Limey if there was a vote in England to get rid of all the parties that have stitched up Britain, then who could resist the temptation of booting them ALL out.

Surely this unholy trinity will have sealed the fate of the United Kingdom.

So what will the UK be called when Scotland leaves?

cor    [30336.   Posted 16-Sep-2014 Tue 11:55]
  sergio[30335] - Not right away i don`t think, but eventually, yes, and i hope such a `SBFC` will not have the power to actually ban anything, only rate age guidelines, but you never know until it happens.

phantom[30334] - I don`t share your cynicism over independence, i know the Scottish government followed Labour over the DPA and even went a bit further. But beside that case they seem to be more liberal and there is even talk of a constitution, which does act as a filter for crap laws in the US, so I`m hopeful.

sergio    [30335.   Posted 16-Sep-2014 Tue 07:08]
  So, if yes will the Scots get their own BBFC? The SBFC? Ireland seem to have their own? http://www.ifco.ie/website/ifco/ifcoweb.nsf/web/news?opendocument&news=yes&type=graphic
Are they going to have to reclassify all the films again?

phantom    [30334.   Posted 15-Sep-2014 Mon 15:23]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30331]
Dave, who knows, the Scots may get it their own way in a few days time.
Just how much of `it` they might get, if they do go independent, I think they cannot even begin to comprehend.
There is a great deal of feminist militancy in politics north of the border. I think people would be greatly surprised to find that they`ve voted themselves into ban-nirvana.

But anyway, yes, I just wondered. With Scandinavians being known for their porn and adult satellite channels, how does that chime with their anti-prostitution laws?
I agree with you though, I can`t see this country ever allowing for such `loopholes`.
I can see the UK enforcement department now. Everyone neatly dressed. In ze brown uniforms vith ze riding boots...

braintree    [30333.   Posted 15-Sep-2014 Mon 13:01]
  Pooch - as I said , I have no interest in the boxset itself but while reading Michael B`s updates over the last few months it would seem that all the censored material does involve bestiality as I don`t recall any mention of any other material that needed censoring . I may be wrong but he did mention surprise at some content that was passed but very happy when the only footage banned was that literally required by UK law.
My post was merely to update some of the points you made in your post . If you can`t cope with not being the definitive voice you should not be writing a blog or on here . At the very least informative posts such as your original one may need some response in order to complete the picture.

Pooch    [30332.   Posted 15-Sep-2014 Mon 05:30]
  @Braintree [30329]: The main gist of my comment was that - some, though not everyone - might be unaware that cuts had been made to the documentary on this set. Clearly you did.

And no, I was NOT aware the cut scenes involved bestiality! I had NO knowledge whatsoever of the content of the missing material, until AFTER I had been told by others. Are you saying that in every single missing second I mentioned, that has been blocked-out, contains actual bestiality? Even the moments that only last a couple of seconds?

As for your assertion that "your conclusions on here which appeared to be a warning not to buy the set", they were merely a notification to others, on a website that is meant to be about cuts and censorship. Clearly, the Melon-Farmers site isn`t about that at all, is it Braintree?!

In regards to have I ever done a completely positive review of an Arrow release? No, I haven`t. I don`t do many reviews of Arrow products at all. Why not?

1) Because I don`t buy/collect all of their stuff, just because it`s an Arrow/Arrow Academy release.

2) Because I don`t like/need/want all of their releases.

3) Because I don`t want to review everything Arrow releases.

4) Because the many releases I have bought, have all had issues that stop them from being genuinely great releases. It`s hardly my fault, that the specific films I`ve purchased from Arrow, all happen to be ones with "faults" or "cuts" in them, like many of their Argento and Fulci releases have been!

Anyway, clearly, there`s no point in me posting anything anymore to the MF Forum, because others will clearly already know everything anyway.

So, well done Braintree, in getting rid of me from your little clique!

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30331.   Posted 14-Sep-2014 Sun 23:51]
  Phantom. Scandinavia still seems pretty keen on porn (maybe except Norway).

Maybe there is something in the wording of the law.

The issue certainly came up when miserable laws to criminalise buying sex came up in Scotland. The moralists creating the bills were very keen to cast a massively wide net of sex being bought.

phantom    [30330.   Posted 14-Sep-2014 Sun 06:07]
  Here`s a thought.

Do those Scandinavian countries which have banned paying for sex still produce any form of pornography?

Did they only outlaw prostitution, or is the actual act of paying for sex completely outlawed? Because if so, then how would paying for someone to perform in pornography be possible?

Anyone know?

braintree    [30329.   Posted 11-Sep-2014 Thu 14:22]
  Strange how Pooch can`t help but try and make smartarse comments when his "knowledge" is questioned . And for someone who runs a site and even a blog to then argue the toss of browsing the internet just reinforces his dodgy thinking. I actually look at 6 sites each day of which this is one - and this usually takes about 30 minutes if things are interesting . Roobarbs just happens to be one of them as it`s main emphasis was originally classic tv which is a subject I`m interested in. Michael Brooke happens to be a contributor to that forum and not only regularly updates on the releases from Arrow and other companies he works / worked for but goes into detail about various issues that arise. The boxset in question was one he worked on personally and in depth which is why the details of what was going on with the boxset were on there a while ago .My comment that the details had been on Roobarb for a long time was not supposed to be any kind of smear about your knowledge - more a confirmation that your theories were not new or secret which was the impression your comments gave. The main gist of my comment was that you were aware the cut scenes involved bestiality so exactly what did you expect Arrow to do about it ? Not include the film at all ? Maybe you should have done your research first before posting your conclusions on here which appeared to be a warning not to buy the set . Have you ever done a completely positive review of an Arrow release? And there`s little point in trying to put people off buying the boxset - it`s a Limited Edition of just 1000 copies and it was sold out weeks before release so anyone who does not already have it will most likely not get one at all.
I don`t have any interest in the boxset at all BTW so the reason I knew about the cuts was because it was in the Arrow forum on Roobarbs. I did zero research on it .

I do agree about FOUND though . Only 4 seconds seems very lenient .

phantom    [30328.   Posted 11-Sep-2014 Thu 07:39]
  Interesting how ATVOD seems to be using the verb `to impair` now regarding the damage done by porn they and their friends at the BBFC fantasise about.
I wonder if there`s a new trend there.
Maybe they`ve decided `to impair` is more suggestive than `to harm`.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30327.   Posted 11-Sep-2014 Thu 06:56]
  Thanks Pooch and Braintree

Interesting information. And yes I guess it will be new to the large majority of readers, so well worth passing on.

Pooch    [30326.   Posted 11-Sep-2014 Thu 05:11]
  @Braintree [30325]

Clearly, you are better informed on the issue than me. Having never heard of, let alone accessed the "Roobarb forums", then for most people, the cuts would be a surprise to them. Moreso, when the opening statement on the extras is vague and ambiguous.

Having now had contact from Michael Brooke, who worked on this release, and explained in more detail what the material was, and more importantly why it was cut, I can now understand why the edits were made.

Still, it would have been better in my view, to have put a note in the book, or on-screen stating that the what the cuts were. Not everyone, myself included, spends hours, days or weeks hooked into the internet, and scouring every single website or forum for information relating to a specific release. Clearly, you do. I don`t. Thus, until I started searching online for the info, I had no idea what had been or cut or why.

Hence my original post in this Forum, which I thought you`d be interested in.

Clearly you aren`t.

I won`t bother you with any more info of this nature again, seeing as everyone (well, the five or six of you that comprise this forum) are so clued-up on every single thing in the worlds of film censorship.

P.S. It`s interesting (to me, at least) that the BBFC passed FOUND with only 4 seconds of cuts, to remove one single shot of an erection, whilst the film was savaged by the Australian OFLC board!

braintree    [30325.   Posted 10-Sep-2014 Wed 13:33]
  These cuts were listed on the Roobarb forums many months ago . As with lots of movies and home video releases advice is taken from the BBFC during the releases planning stages regarding what they would be wasting their time submitting. Surprise surprise - no bestiality allowed . Michael B explained it would be unlikely to be cleared uncut as soon as he saw it let alone before they contacted the BBFC. So quite obviously Arrow removed it so that the BBFC didn`t refuse it . What exactly did you expect them to do ? And how is the phrase " to comply with UK law" not a clear reference to cuts and censoring?

Pooch    [30324.   Posted 10-Sep-2014 Wed 05:40]
  Bad news guys - The WALERIAN BOROWCZYK Blu-Ray/DVD Combo set from Arrow, has cuts in it! :(

Whilst it`s not one of the films that`s been cut, but one of the extras instead, the fact that 32 seconds has been cut, is still not good. I shall now explain.

On the IMMORAL TALES set, there is an extra called "A Private Collector: Oberhausen Cut", that runs to 14m 31s. Sadly, 32s of that are blank screens of censored content. That is to say, when something has been censored, the screen goes completely blank. The start of the featurette does include the following note:

"In order to comply with UK law, part of this alternative version of A PRIVATE COLLECTOR has been adapted with the full co-operation of Borowczyk`s regular collaborator Dominque Diverge-Segretin."

What they don`t tell you, is that the "adaption" is censorship, made by Arrow, not by the BBFC. The cuts are as follows:

Cut 1 - 12m 08s to 12m 20s (12s of cuts)
Cut 2 - 12m 22s to 12m 24s (02s of cuts)
Cut 3 - 12m 26s to 12m 29s (03s of cuts)
Cut 4 - 12m 32s to 12m 35s (03s of cuts)
Cut 5 - 12m 39s to 12m 45s (06s of cuts)
Cut 6 - 12m 50s to 12m 56s (06s of cuts)

According to my research, the cuts are to remove scenes of bestiality. According to Michael B over at the Criterion Forums:

"specifically we blacked-out all of the frames where there`s actual sexual contact between the dog and the woman. We were advised that pixelation probably wouldn`t be sufficient to avoid potential legal hassle. However, the last shot has been left intact despite the dog being visibly aroused (evidence of which was pixelated on the German disc), as we reckoned that if aroused horses in The Beast (and innumerable David Attenborough documentaries) were OK, we`d probably get away with this one too - and we did."

Allegedly, the bestiality scenes were even stronger than those featured in the French documentary THE GOOD OLD NAUGHTY DAYS, and would NOT even have been passed at R18 levels! However, I can neither confirm or deny this, having never seen the uncut version of A PRIVATE COLLECTOR. (The scenes in THE GOOD OLD NAUGHTY DAYS, however, are explicit, but feature a dog licking a lady, rather than anyone doing anything to the dog itself, and thus, the scene is more laughable than obscene or offensive.)

phantom    [30322.   Posted 6-Sep-2014 Sat 16:09]
  Re: Love is Strange...And the MPAA is even stranger 

Actually, the BBFC I don`t think are quite that angelic, Pooch.

“With the BBFC, they`ll tell you exactly what the problem is, what to cut, and will do their best to help you out. They`ll give you lists of specific cuts, and what the results will be if you agree to make the cuts, or not. In many ways, they are one of the most open classification boards anywhere in the world. They actually make a film-maker`s life easy, and don`t treat you any differently, whether you`re a big major studio churning out blockbusters since the dawn of time, or a first-timer submitting your very first film to them, on a shoestring budget. It`s a very even playing field. All they care about is, how "adult" is your film, and is it suitable for its intended audience. Nothing else matters.If anything, if you are a newcomer to them, they will bend over backwards to accommodate and help you out, at every step of the classification process. “

Now I`ll admit to being almost pathologically incapable of hearing anyone heap any praise onto the BBFC.

But I really wouldn`t go as far as saying that the BBFC makes a film maker`s life easy.

I know your point here is comparative, so you mean they`re easier to deal with than other classifiers; in this case, the MPAA. But in a world in which they have you by the goolies, just because this lot squeeze a little less violently, it doesn`t mean that they`re nice people. ;)

Also, the BBFC do not merely care about how `adult` a film is.

If so, they would not be in a position to withhold certificates.
So the BBFC are not merely in the business of classification, unlike the MPAA. they`re in the censorship business too.
There is a position the BBFC can reach whereby they think something is `too adult` for adults.

This puts them more on a par with film censorship boards of countries like Iran or North Korea.

Apart from that they do also operate what can be termed little more than a financial racket.

So, although I fully comprehend the main thrust of your article, let`s not be too nice with the BBFC. They are most likely an organisation that would be best disbanded and replaced with a new classification body; one which cannot ban, one which cannot engage in racketeering, and one which does not seek to expand its business interests.

Meanwhile, regarding the main thrust of your article, I`m not sure.
I don`t think we ever will treat everyone equal.
Human history seems quite clear on that front.

Moreover I`m not sure whether homosexuality is really the main bone of contention anymore. It`s been the cause celebre of the political class these last years on either side of the pond.
In fact it`s become an annoying shorthand for `liberal, tolerant and open minded`. Which is why all politicos these days so fervently embrace the cause – whilst destroying ancient rights, locking suspects up without trial, spying on everyone on the internet and gradually turning our world ever more into a police state.

Let`s not forget that David Cameron, who just recently stated people waving the wrong kind of flag ought to be locked up, is very much in favour of gay rights. It seems rather telling.

So in essence, what I`m saying is the gay agenda has become the fig leaf for the most illiberal forces in politics.
Perhaps thus it`s time we focused on something other than enfranchisement of homosexuals and realised that that scale has been decidedly tipped over the years. (Heavens, the last change in law was effectively over the meaning of a word (`marriage`), so completely are they enfranchised by now.)
It`s very hard to see this minority as victims anymore.

So perhaps, after fifteen to twenty years of continuous liberalisation on homosexuality - whilst no other field of politics has seen any liberalisation at all - it`s perhaps someone else`s turn now.

phantom    [30321.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 15:54]
  In that case, Braintree, let`s keep our fingers crossed that the next guy to take up writing Dr Who is a hardline libertarian who hates censorship with a passion.

I`d quite enjoy watching an episode where it turns out the BBFC is being run by Daleks. ;)

braintree    [30320.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:52]
  It always seems to be rather stupid when broadcasters make temporary cuts to programmes because of something in the news . Remember when anything involving guns was either taken off or in at least one case had its title changed thanks to Hungerford. This weeks Dr Who cuts are PC through and through. Do we really need to spoil a broadcast for millions just to ensure a few people don`t see something to remind them of a possible tragedy . In all honesty , is anyone waiting to hear of the killing of their relative going to be wrapped up in Dr Who? When the tsusami hit that meant water related content was gone for a while and after Hungerford some loon at the BBC said First Blood and Rambo would never be shown so they were joining in the unproven rhetoric of the tabloids.
Is it likely that Dr Who will have anything approaching a realistic depiction of a beheading in its teatime slot?

Re Dr Who lesbian kiss . The regulator quite rightly felt no investigation was required but it has been something of an irritation to see the gay agenda on a regular basis since Dr Who was revived . But are we surprised . Look who brought it back .

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30319.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:38]
  "Because some imaginary complainant may be able to draw an imaginary line between two completely unrelated situations.
Someone - may - feel offended. Simply because we can imagine that it might be the case. Thus we must take action - against our own imaginary offence".

Great line phantom

"To my knowledge neither Dr Who, nor Robin Hood, nor The Sheriff of Nottingham have ever been to Syria".

Well actually there is a rather poignant connection. King Richard is very much part of the Robin Hood story and he was off fighting muslims in the Crusades in lands including Syria. [Edit after reading Wiki]

phantom    [30318.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:22]
  A Robot?
I love it.
So I guess those episodes of Red Dwarf in which Kryten loses/exchanges his head will also be off limits for the next week or two.

Out of respect, of course...

phantom    [30317.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:20]
  Talking of Dr Who though.
There was recently I believe a piece on a lesbian kiss here against which people objected.
I don`t think all these objections were necessarily out of moral prudery.
There are some people (I know one person) who object to Dr Who having become a bit of a campaigning tool in that regard. And that is to what they object. To a degree I can see their point.

That said, I`ve never cared much for Dr Who. Having grown up abroad I guess I never got `into it`. But I do understand it`s a bit of an institution. Which is why I think some people object to it being used as a campaigning tool for this or that particular cause.

DoodleBug    [30316.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:17]
  [30313] @dave

Dave, you were saying that the BBC`s decision to censor the upcoming episode of Doctor Who was a little over the top, well just to add a bit more to the ridiculous situation we have here...

(SPOILER ALERT for anyone who is going to watch the episode)

The character that gets beheaded is actually a robot, not even a real human being

phantom    [30315.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 14:15]
  Pooch [30312]

Gods, not this again.
So, we`re showing respect.
We can thus show any form of death on tv, except for beheadings - for a week or two.
Because some imaginary complainant may be able to draw an imaginary line between two completely unrelated situations.
Someone - may - feel offended. Simply because we can imagine that it might be the case. Thus we must take action - against our own imaginary offence.

To my knowledge neither Dr Who, nor Robin Hood, nor The Sheriff of Nottingham have ever been to Syria.
The two items are completely unrelated.
If anyone is drawing the connection it is in fact the BBC.
They are not doing so out of respect, but because they want to be seen as being respectful. After all, they are effectively pointing out to us how respectful they are.

Nothing can be more representative of political correctness than taking preemptive steps against a hypothetical feeling of offence.

Dave, you`re absolutely right on this one.
Pooch, you`re not.

cor    [30314.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 07:51]
  Pooch[30312]

"No! It`s got jack-shit to do with political-correctness, and everything to do with being respectful."

Actually its got jack-shit to do with being respectful and everything to do with political-correctness ..

Even if you thought anyone could draw a map between Dr Who and a real foreign war (without that require some mental disability) what exactly are we trying to say with the editors changes..?

"don`t behead him, please, stab him to death instead.."
or
"behead him if you want, just do it off camera.."

-is that the `respect` you think is good to send over to a POW.. And one that we`ve largely written off in the media because of our own PC thoughts on how to deal with foreign army`s that we`ve decided to call terrorists.


Just a strange comparison;
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xq2xStb0R-c
Norfolk Police can apparently publish snuff films on youtube *to help people be afraid and avoid accidents*, by this measure the BBC are actively trying to hid the hazards of decapitation then? lmao.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30313.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 07:19]
  Pooch

I sympathise with where you are coming from but I do believe that this has become an example of political correctness. In the past programmes that have being similar to a real life tragedy have been respectfully postponed and I accept that as a sensitive mark of respect. However Dr Who has no real connections with anything to do with the reallife ongoing inhumanity in Iraq and Syria.

It just seems to me going too far to clutch at straws for vague connections. This seems to have allusions to PC as one is bullied into some sort of mandated over the top response...And my rather cliched, but totally accurate concern is, where will it end?

I am just adding a trivial criticism, saying that in this case, the BBC response seems to me a little over the top. Just my opinion. Is one allowed to have opinions when debating issues deemed to be PC?

Pooch    [30312.   Posted 5-Sep-2014 Fri 06:05]
  In your "Just Don`t Mention the Crusades..." article, about the BBC removing a beheading sequence from Saturday night`s DR WHO episode, the author of the article says:

"The BBC has edited out a beheading from a fight scene in this weekend`s episode of Doctor Who, featuring Robin Hood, as a mark of political correctness following the murder of two US journalists."

No! It`s got jack-shit to do with political-correctness, and everything to do with being respectful. I don`t know if the author of the article is aware, but a British man has been captured by the IS (Islamic State) group, and is being threatened with beheading, unless a ransom is paid.

The person`s name hasn`t been made public, as far as I`m aware, but if that person was the article author`s father, brother, or cousin, would they really be happy with a fictional TV sci-fi show depicting a beheading in the same week that two real people have been beheaded, and a third person was potentially going to be murdered?

Come on, Dave! Show some respect here! Not everything that is censored, is done out of "political correctness"! Shame on you, for allowing the wording of the article to go ahead like this!

braintree    [30311.   Posted 4-Sep-2014 Thu 13:03]
  Dave - yes you are right . Sorry for contradicting you . I`d forgotten it was just 2 discs . Can`t believe its been almost 10 years since it came out.
A year or two ago I would have been excited about buying it again on 4 discs but over the last year or so most of the films have been released on Bluray although in order to get them you need to buy from more than one country . Universal don`t seem interested in releasing a lot of their classic movies themselves so they all get licenced to different companies in different countries . Universal always did seem to have a low opinion of these . Some never did get a dvd release in the UK and those that did were not released by Universal .
Totally uncut Curse of the Werewolf now out on Bluray on an English friendly German disc

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30310.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 15:43]
  Braintree

I believe the 2005 release was crammed onto 2 discs and hence the issues. This release is 4 discs. So although I haven`t read anything, should be better. And assuming it is, then the set itself seemed well received, so may be of interest to readers.

It appears twice because I wanted it to appear on the Hammer news page and also on the full list of releases. I`ll have a think if I can better organise this.

Phantom

Yes `mandatory deradicalisation` sounds an excellently creepy term. Perhaps next deradicalisation camps will be built on Boris` unused island

Perhaps Miliband would like to consider mandatory de-sexualisation camps while he is at it. And we could recruit Ilsa as a de-sexualisation czar.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30309.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 15:20]
  Melonfarmers.co.uk is now back online

phantom    [30308.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 15:18]
  This post is not as such about censorship, but there is a reason why I bring this up.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/ed-miliband-urges-west-to-unite-to-confront-isis-threat-at-home-and-abroad-9700803.html

Miliband calls for `mandatory deradicalisation`. Hmmm.
I shuddered when I first heard this.
Now sure, he`s not in power. But Labour will one day be back in power.
And if this is their thinking we ought to be afraid.

Now I can imagine that many will quite like anything that sounds tough on Islamists.

But think about it. `Mandatory deradicalisation`.

For that read state-sponsored `re-education`. Or `brain-washing`.

That thought is terrifying.

And we all know how the slippery slope works.
Once they establish an idea, they soon start using it for other things.
If it`s good for terrorist suspects (and these would be suspects, not convicted terrorists!), then it`s good for others too.

I wouldn`t want to be one of those poor guys arrested under the DPA if Miliband comes to power. Not enough that you`d be publicly humiliated, have your career destroyed and be thrown into prison. No, this raises the possibility of your also being sent to mandatory psychological re-training.

And once Labour get their law that criminalises paying for sex, I`d guess they`d also like to re-train those guys too.

Yes, I`m speculating. But I`ve speculated before on this site and been proved right. We all know what they want and which laws they`ll push for, no sooner that they`re back in power.

That combined with the concept of `mandatory deradicalisation` is truly terrifying.

Vote Labour at your peril.

braintree    [30307.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 15:16]
  The lack of prison population stats is yet another PC casualty.

Todays news on the site features 2 mentions of the Hammer Horror set of 8 Universal movies . Why?
This set was released many years ago and the version showing on here looks no different . The main bone of contention was that the set used 4 dual layered double sided dvd`s and there were regular reports of playback issues with the dvd-18 discs . I had hoped a reissue would mean 8 discs instead of 4 but the link to Amazon still says 4 - so why is this set news ?

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30306.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 12:34]
  Thanks ronandusty, I will follow this up for tomorrow`s update

ronandusty    [30305.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 10:45]
  Both The Equalizer & A Walk Among The Tombstones have been cut for a 15 cert by the BBFC. The Equalizer for violence and A Walk Among The Tombstones for sexual threat and an aggressive use of the c-word.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30304.   Posted 3-Sep-2014 Wed 09:47]
  Melon Farmers web host is reporting storage failures, leaving MelonFarmers (.co.uk) offline. Hopefully all will be resolved soon., ie

By the way, there is now an ssl option for a little extra privacy when reading melonfarmers at https://wwww.melonfarmers.co.uk

phantom    [30303.   Posted 2-Sep-2014 Tue 20:13]
  braintree [30302]

I`m not really sure what the relevance of the ethnicity of the prison population is, Braintree.
In the case of the Rotherham cases the fear of appearing racist seems to have played a part.

But the national prison population?
I`d hardly be surprised if it roughly represented the population, proportionate to respective levels of economic deprivation in various ethnic groups. i.e. the poorest ethnic groups will be much more numerous in prison, proportionate to their share of the population.
That`s hardly news.

To illustrate my point, I`d point out that I also suspect there being a higher percentage of men with tattoos in prison than in the general population.
But I`m not sure that tells us anything, whether politically correct or otherwise.

braintree    [30302.   Posted 2-Sep-2014 Tue 16:45]
  Re The Rotherham Enquiry . I think there`s an ongoing problem of the authorities not wanting to look biased which is why they refuse to give a breakdown of the ethnicity of the prison population . I can tell you from first hand experience ( thanks OPA) that the figures would make for very un PC reading.

braintree    [30301.   Posted 2-Sep-2014 Tue 16:34]
  Has anyone been convicted for the Dangerous Pictures Act where the "offender" was not being investigated for an unconnected matter? The Judicial system must be very happy with itself for all these dangerous violent rapists they`ve locked up - after all that was what the law was intended to be for . I`m pretty sure the law has convicted nobody it was intended for . And all because people couldn`t tell one woman who needed a scapegoat for her daughters death to shutup and move on .

phantom    [30300.   Posted 28-Aug-2014 Thu 06:13]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30297]

What is clear is that there is a great deal of difficulty within the media (or among politicians) to somehow address the fact that these gangs were almost entirely made up of Asian, Muslim men and that there seemed to be an attitude among these men that their behaviour was alright as it was directed at western, white girls.
It`s an uncomfortable truth, so it is simply not mentioned.

In a bizarre twist the fear of being accused of racism is stopping anyone from pointing out the blatant racism which seemed to be part of these crimes.
Asian people - so goes the conventional thought - can only be victims of racism. So political correctness in this case simply denies the existence of racism, as to acknowledge it could be seen as racist.

That strange twisting of logic is so weird, it makes your eyes water.
But then that is where political correctness takes us.
So yes, I`m definitely with you there.

But I do still think the key issue here is the breathtaking exaggeration of the figures.
From what I understand, 66 cases were looked into, of which 64 were found to be of merit. From this finding of 64 confirmed cases, the report`s authors extrapolated the figure of `at least 1400` in the last 16 years.

Meanwhile the figure of 1400 is now simply being read as fact by all parties.

Now it is of course true that there is a significant problem with child abuse in this country. Frankly, I think it is `the British disease`.
But the scale identified in this report is so inflated, it would simply have been impossible to achieve.
No matter how organised and numerous gangs might have been, it`s just not feasible to propose that they could find 90 new girls every year - in a place the size of Rochdale.

To suggest they could, exaggerates the problem and feeds the national paranoia on this subject. Parents are already afraid enough for their kids, without the need to stoke such fears with insane figures.

The fact that the authors of the report would publish such figures, based on a sample of 66 cases, does suggest very strongly that they have an agenda; one wishes to scare the living daylights out of the population in order to achieve something; the politics of fear.

The media meanwhile are either too complacent or too keen on sensational headlines to question anything.

Therefore another fantasy is entering the line-up of sham facts to be banded about. For don`t think this figure will be forgotten. In five years time some Harriet Harman type is still going to be using this as an argument to support her demands for some desired punitive measure.

The truth has a value.
Filling our politics with pseudo-facts which have simply been created to further one agenda or another is not only futile, it is dangerous.

It is already plain that what happened in some places in Britain (and most likely in plenty of others, too) was truly ghastly. Why exaggerate it further?

Therumbler    [30299.   Posted 27-Aug-2014 Wed 14:38]
  I`m not sure what legal measures could be introduced to tackle the issue the Enquiry uncovered. It appears to me that the law is sufficient, but those who should enforce the law appear cowardly when confronted by something that doesn`t fit with their indoctrination.

braintree    [30298.   Posted 27-Aug-2014 Wed 13:22]
  Re The Rotherham Enquiry - it sounds very much like the perpetrators must have taken instructions from Jimmy Savile , the much mentioned paedophile who was able to have more than 500 victims yet was able to keep them all silent for 50 years.
But seriously , this enquiry sounds as accurate as a weather forecast for Christmas . But in the current climate where child sex abuse can never be denied those reporting this type of thing can easily pluck a nice sounding figure from the air and instantly have it taken as gospel- after all - nobody is going to standup and tell them they are lying even though any real evidence likely to indicate abuse on such a scale will be non existent . I`m sure those paid to investigate this enquiry and put together this report are more than happy to come up with numbers to justify the payment they received for it.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30297.   Posted 27-Aug-2014 Wed 09:06]
  Interesting phantom.

Sometimes you can listen to the news and hear people spout on for a fair while without daring to mention the key points to what is being talked about. Your two items are both examples with a total ban on anything critical of muslims and on any acknowledgement that vast numbers of people enjoy sexy entertainment.

And in the Rotherham case you get the corollary that once a report is accepted by the powers that be then it becomes itself beyond reproach.

It`s a strange old world that we have created for ourselves.

Oh and I just noticed that Wrecking Ball has now been viewed 699,008,259 times on YouTube.

phantom    [30296.   Posted 26-Aug-2014 Tue 14:16]
  Oh, and remember the fuss about Miley Cyrus` video `Wrecking Ball`?
It was one of the most oft quoted examples of the `sexualisation of society and childhood` here in Britain and thus ranks high on the list of reasons for David Cameron`s bringing the BBFC into video age rating by law.
Well, it just won best video at the MTV awards.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-28936803

Odd, how it`s celebrated by the world, but seen as a source of evil in this country. Says quite a bit about the current health of the nation, I guess.

phantom    [30295.   Posted 26-Aug-2014 Tue 14:11]
  According to a report in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013 1400 children were sexually abused.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-28939089

Is it just me or does that all sound a little steep?
Rotherham has a population of a quarter a million.
http://www.cypfconsortium.org.uk/UserFiles/File/IYSS_Needs_Assessment_Appendices.pdf

1400 over sixteen years represents 87.5 new children each year.
And let`s face it, we`re talking girls, eliminating 50% of the child population from the start.
It all seems a little far fetched to me.

Why am I bringing this up? It`s hardly a censorship issue.
No, it isn`t but it is representative of studies and reports backing up an agenda. Not least, the child protection agenda.

One acts out of the best of intentions, but then totally overshoots the goal one set out to achieve. Meanwhile no third party dares to step in, due to the nature of the subject. tTus all nod sagely and agree it`s a `big problem`.

But who could forget what happened in Middlesbrough when the authorities started spotting child abuse everywhere?
Who could ignore the citing of `child protection` when it comes to the censorship of the internet?

This is just the sort of case which illustrates the thinking behind such activities perfectly.

Can anyone really believe that the numbers forwarded here could be true?
How would these Asian gangs succeed in finding nearly ninety new girls per year? In a place the size of Rotherham?

There is no doubt that a problem exists, that truly atrocious things were committed. But the alleged scale is ridiculous.
How many children would one expect to live in a place like Rotherham? Divide that by two, because the gangs were after girls.
Now try finding ninety new girls every year.
What sort of percentage of the annual growth in female child population does that represent?
The scale just seems off the chart.

But - and this is where it gets interesting - any measures that will be taken, will be taken in proportion to the scale of the problem.
Thus, report the problem to be of a ridiculously high level and you create cart blanche in regards potential steps to be taken in reply.
Overestimating the problem justifies virtually any means in counteracting it.

It is why tens of thousands of women are trafficked into sex slavery in this country. It is why every child is exposed to the worst excesses of online hardcore porn. It is why one in every four women suffers sexual violence in the UK.
None of these figure are credible, but they are nonetheless common currency.

Now take the near ninety kids per year in Rotherham and extrapolate it to Britain. (87.5 / 25`0000 * 60`0000`000)
The figure is 21`000 new girls per year (additional to those already being exploited).
Armed with such national figures, what extreme measures can one justify to tackle this problem?
We`ve all heard the line, `if it saves only one child`...
Well, what about 21`000 children per year?

Already now nobody can be in contact with children in a professional capacity without undergoing police checks.
How much more can officialdom demand `to reduce risks`?

I suspect some MP will be draping him or herself in the mantle of child protection and demanding something be done in the next few days, on the back of this report. One dreads to think what measures he or she will propose. And I`m sure nobody is going to have the guts to say that the reported scale is tosh.

Fingers crossed that it won`t spark yet another round of prohibitions and proscriptions. But if it does, will anyone be surprised?

phantom    [30294.   Posted 22-Aug-2014 Fri 10:28]
  DarkAngel5 [30293]

Well, the term `progressive` cannot be taken literally when viewed through the prism of politics.
These days the Labour Party calls itself `progressive`. this is because it these days avoids the tags `socialist` or `left-wing`.
So in political terms `progressive` doesn`t match the dictionary definition.
In the same vein `progressive` can be stretched to mean `liberal`.
I think this is where the contradiction resides which you point out.
Championing women`s rights is deemed `liberal` (or `progressive`) when viewed as standing in opposition to social conservatism. However, standing up for freedom of expression is also deemed `liberal`.
We thus have two schools of thought which both shelter under the same political umbrella term.
Both the feminists demanding things be banned and the libertarians opposing these bans are `liberals` or `progressives`.
But this is really just the case when taking the political meanings of the terminology. The term `liberal` in that regard has become utterly corrupted.
It`s actual dictionary meaning would, I suspect, be entirely on the side of those who are more freedom minded.
Calling yourself liberal and demanding others be silenced or locked up for expressing an idea of which you disapprove is a fairly new idea.
I don`t think it`s a concept the population at large has bought in to.

DarkAngel5    [30293.   Posted 21-Aug-2014 Thu 14:47]
  OK, don`t really like talking about this bunch as I dislike giving them an air of legitimacy, when they`re little more than a rabble of feminist malcontents, but anyways...

Have any of you heard about a group calling themselves "No More Page 3" (might have mentioned them before)? Basically, they`re trying to get the Sun, and similar papers, to remove the topless girls from their papers?

Well, I really don`t know what planet these people are on. They seem to be of the opinion that if they think something is sexist, misogynistic, or they just don`t like it, then people should do what they say.

They say the campaign is simply asking the editor of The Sun very nicely, if he wouldn`t mind removing the P3 girl. Which in itself is fine (he can always say no).

But what is far more insidious is the fact they`re actively targeting shops and supermarkets that stock the paper to either stop stocking it, or move it to the top shelf, which is a way of frustrating sales and therefore a way of trying to force the papers to comply with your demands. Which in my view is basically a form of censorship via the back door.

The other thing is they get very uppity when people don`t agree with them or concede to their "wishes". They got very stroppy the other day and were bombarding the social media pages of the co-op after they refused to move the Sun and Star onto the top shelf with the lads mags.

Whilst the campaigns leader, Lucy Anne Holmes is it?, seems relatively moderate (she says she`s not against porn per-se) from what I`ve seen, the majority of her supporters do seem to be of the rabid, man hating, femi-nazi variety.

From the discussions I had with them (before getting booted off their FB page for being too argumentative), they seem to view themselves as "progressive". Yet their arguments against having P3 girls in the papers used the exact same rhetoric we`ve heard trotted out time and time again against TV, videos, computers games, etc etc, about "protecting children" and "corrupting influences" .

Anyway, they`re trying to get a million sigs on their petition page, its taken them about 2 years to get just under 200,000 (at this rate that`ll take them 10 years), most of which have been solicited by other feminist groups and anti-porn campaign groups. However, I seem to recall the Save BBC3 campaign and the anti-badger cull campaigns got more than that in just a few weeks. says it all really.

So what does anyone else reckon to them. Progressive, or illiberal? I say the latter personally, but that`s just my view.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30292.   Posted 20-Aug-2014 Wed 22:43]
  Hi DarkAngel

Ofcom always used to comment that they get hardly any complaints from PayTV. But now complaints have been encouraged massively as if it was some sort of replacement for the democracy lost in the real world. I`d be surprised if this episode would survive if complained about now. Hopefully there are still less people who complain about TV they have paid for.

DarkAngel5    [30291.   Posted 20-Aug-2014 Wed 14:58]
  Hi Guys, long time since I visited here last.

Just read an article on MF from a couple of weeks back about swearing in the simpsons.

Well, I seem to recall there`s an old episode (I forget the title) where they go to meet Homer`s half brother Herb (voiced by Danny DeVito IIRC) and Bart refers to him as a "bastard". When Homer goes to tell him off for swearing, he then explains "well he was born out of wedlock, therefore he is a bastard", to which Homer is forced to agree.

Then Bart starts singing the word "bastard" over and over.

Seem to recall first seeing that episode on Sky1 in the late 90s and they`ve repeated it many times since, usually around the 6pm slot and no one has complained yet.

Guess Ofcom are stricter with the free-to-air terrestrial channel, than the subscription based satellite ones?

phantom    [30290.   Posted 18-Aug-2014 Mon 15:24]
  Ah more news from our great Etonian, I see.
`Family friendly` policy. Yes, of course.
It is a long established fact in Eton that locking up parents in the best way of ensuring their urchins grow up healthily.
And clamping down on stuff, does lock up more people. That`s just a fact of life.
So, posh David`s policy is that destroying families is family friendly.
They do teach them well in Eton, don`t they? The true intellectual cream.
O tempora, o mores, David my old boy...

Therumbler    [30289.   Posted 18-Aug-2014 Mon 05:08]
  http://www.theguardian.com/media/2014/aug/18/online-music-videos-age-rating-october-david-cameron

Online music videos to carry age rating from October, says David Cameron

cor    [30288.   Posted 17-Aug-2014 Sun 17:35]
  RE: phantom[30287]

prime minister suggested, anyone "walking around with Isil flags (or..)" should be arrested.

That`s bloody terrifying, they will be sending people to prison for disagreeing with the government. That`s what he means there, the *least* that will get you locked up is airing political opinions the government don`t like.

When the hell did we start imprisoning people for political dissent..?

phantom    [30287.   Posted 17-Aug-2014 Sun 15:12]
  here we go...

Cameron the Great following in the footsteps of St Anthony of Blair.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-28823281

"The prime minister`s message is as much about home as well as abroad. People walking around with an Islamic State flag "will be arrested", he says."

Excuse me, Eton-boy, but by what right can you tell us what flags us commoners, whose daddy didn`t send them to a `proper school`, are permitted to fly? Show me where it says so in law?

There are two possibilities.
One, the Blairite `might cause offence` gambit.
Two, the banned expression of support for terrorism.

The latter in particular is worrying here. And I think that`s what posh David is aiming at.
Check out how many times Cameron uses the term `terrorist`/`terrorism` here. And that`s the crux of it. `Supporting` terrorism is forbidden in this country, ever since Blair. Remember the girl writing terrorist `poetry` going to prison?

But pray, what is a terrorist? What is terrorism?
To us lesser mortals, a terrorist is someone who walks onto a bus with a bomb. Or who hijacks a plane. You know, we all have a general picture.
But now we are talking about those designated terrorists by the British state.

These `Islamic State` lot are a bunch of nutters, no doubt. But are they terrorists? What busses have they bombed? Whose planes have they hijacked? Sure, they have committed atrocities in their war. But so did, for example, the Red Army during the Second World War.
`Islamic State` are a volunteer army made up of irregular fighters. They practice their extreme form of Sharia and show no concern at all for any minority they encounter. Ghastly? Yes. Terrorist? No.
For surely that is not the definition of `terrorism`. It never has been. It never will be.

But it appears that expressing support for these guys will get you prosecuted, - because support for terrorism is forbidden.

The audacity of the land grab here is quite breathtaking.

You simply define your opponent as an "exceptionally dangerous terrorist movement" and then all the rules of censorship apply. (and that`s how you bang up people returning from the Syrian civil war)

This begs the question, who is is in charge of the definition of who constitutes a terrorist. The courts or the state?

The scope for the state to define various forces and powers around the world `terrorists` and thus silencing any positive mention of them in this country is vast.

I can`t help but feel that Cameron is flying a kite here and what he`s out to get is profound and very dangerous.

 


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