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freeworld    [30650.   Posted 29-Mar-2015 Sun 14:33]
  phantom [30649. Posted 29-Mar-2015 Sun 07:20]
SNP legislation is nationalising people`s children - the level of state intrusion being introduced is horrifying - the agenda to replace the family with the state`s "benign care" is even more well advanced where these cod nationalists, until recently led by a well fed, wealthy "ex Maoist", hold power.

Yes indeed, the advance of the Stasi state, or, more aptly, the advance of the Common Purpose/Frankfurt school institution long marchers state.

Read and shudder...

phantom    [30649.   Posted 29-Mar-2015 Sun 07:20]
  When is a threat `help`, I wonder?
When it`s from a school head teacher, apparently.

The Stasi society advances on and on.
Here are head teachers effectively volunteering to turn state informers, in order to `help` people.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30648.   Posted 28-Mar-2015 Sat 12:25]
  Re Commando

The Director`s cut contains extra violence originally cut in the US for an R rating during the tool shed scene:

-The pitchfork killing features additional reaction from the soldier as he dies and an extra shot as he slumps to the floor
-Schwarzenegger throws a second circular saw blade which embeds itself into the neck of a bad guy, lots of blood, and more reaction from the soldier as he puts is hands to his neck.
-The guy who is axed in the groin is shown in agony longer
-The guy with the severed arm is seen lying on the floor, stump in the air, screaming for a second or two longer and for an extra shot when is crawling on the ground.

So the main censorship UK timeline is

1985 cut in the US for an R rating
1985-2001 further cut by the BBFC and later even more cuts appeared as German version was released in the UK
2007 Directors Cut passed uncut by the BBFC but not released
2007 Directors Cut released in the US
2008 BBFC cuts waived to the theatrical version so that the UK release of that year was the same as the US R rated version
2015 Directors Cut released in the UK (with the uncut BBFC certificate from 2007)

braintree    [30647.   Posted 27-Mar-2015 Fri 14:36]
  Re todays story about Commando. I`m assuming there is more to the Directors Cut than restoring BBFC cuts as these were waived in 2007 ( as the story says) and the 2008 Bluray restores all these cuts and is the same original theatrical version as released on Bluray elsewhere. Is the DC title perhaps for MPAA cuts restored rather than BBFC ones?

freeworld    [30646.   Posted 25-Mar-2015 Wed 05:59]
  Sabreman64 {30645. Posted 25-Mar-2015 Wed 04:35}
Every time somebody knuckles under to these sanctimonious little Torquemadas they gain strength and confidence. It`s way past time they were told in no uncertain terms to mind their own business and stop their interference in our lives. Unfortunately the political class/ Establishment panders to this screechy minority continually - because it`s noisy and persistent, but they are far from representative of public opinion. A concerted fightback needs to be made against these heretic hunting bullies, which starts with not caving in to their noise, intimidation and harassment.

Sabreman64    [30645.   Posted 25-Mar-2015 Wed 04:35]

Yawn. Another day, another ad banned by the damn ASA for being `sexist` or for causing `widespread offence`. Of course, the feminazis at Object were one of the complainers, despite the fact that they would never buy the Daily Star anyway.

Honestly, all this fuss over `sexism`, `objectification` and `sexualisation` of women, and other such nonsense just makes me want to go out and buy as many non-PC and `sexist` books, magazines and other products as possible as a way of sticking two fingers up at all these miserable killjoy whingers.

freeworld    [30644.   Posted 25-Mar-2015 Wed 02:57]
  Rearing it`s ugly head again. Ulster will have it in June, I think. Those taking an interest in such things at the time will recall the Brown government moving towards the "Swedish model" just before it lost power in 2010 - with the prospect of a Labour government again in May, we could be see its resurrection as party policy ( McTaggart was defeated in her last "private" attempt not long ago).

phantom    [30643.   Posted 23-Mar-2015 Mon 19:32]
  I`m sure they did cut those words, goatboy.
In fact I remember to which two episodes you refer there. (and two episodes, given that they`ve made over 150 episodes so far is very, very tame)
But the fact is that a great deal more than `whore` and `slut` is cut.
Big Bang is just about as mainstream and inoffensive as you can get in a sitcom these days.
The fact that Channel 4 sees fit to cut something out of just about every episode in pre-watershed broadcast is cause for concern.
I would class this series as in tune with modern taste and sensibilities as one can get.
To find fault even in this, one must really try hard.
But channel 4 manages.
One wonders just who encourages them to do this...

goatboy    [30642.   Posted 23-Mar-2015 Mon 17:48]
  C4 cuts the words `whore` and `slut` from the pre watershed Big Bang, they`ve always been cut in the 6/6.30pm E4 slots.

phantom    [30641.   Posted 23-Mar-2015 Mon 16:15]
  re: Big Bang Theory

It`s been going on for some time. I believe i myself have mentioned the cutting of Big Bang dialogue once or twice on here.
It is utterly incomprehensible to me why something as innocent as this sitcom would be cut, but it is happening on a daily basis.
It seems any screening before the watershed has any line which is even mildly suggestive removed.
The very fact that something so mild can be deemed worthy of cutting does not bode well for any other TV content.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30640.   Posted 22-Mar-2015 Sun 01:31]
  Braintree, re Don`t lose your head.

I added the note. I couldn`t find anything else on the cuts, so given the difference in production set up, then it does seem likely that the company treated the cuts differently to most Carry On films, and kept the cut material for future use. Thanks for the info.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30639.   Posted 20-Mar-2015 Fri 12:55]
  Phantom re D & G

A Spiked article about the PC bullies launching into D&G

phantom    [30638.   Posted 19-Mar-2015 Thu 19:43]
  re: Aw...poor little things...

Stunning. So police officers may have to attend a real murder scene, detailing all the real gore.
But to view some `extreme porn` may be too much for them.

Better yet, the judge insisted it was not a `victimless crime`.
Who, pray, is the victim, m`lud? The horse?

braintree    [30637.   Posted 17-Mar-2015 Tue 15:19]
  Re: todays story about cuts to Carry On - Don`t Lose Your Head.
The line "You`ve always had magnificent balls" is said to be cut but I`m sure its included. That very line is included in the opening montage of the theatrical "That`s Carry On" so unless it`s not in the original film and the cut clip is only seen in the compilation ( which was made 10 years later) it would indicate that at least that cut is restored to the film. It was the first or second of the Rank films , now owned by ITV and it wasn`t until Carlton/ITV got hold of them that the original 15 version of Carry On England was seen again. Uncut for an AA it lasted about a week in the cinema where it bombed and was withdrawn and recut for an A. It was the A version that played on tv , was released on video etc. But the uncut version was retained so perhaps the uncut versions of the other Rank films are also in the vaults. When Carlton released England on dvd well over a decade ago it was something of a treat to actually get a choice to watch either version. Shame it had to be one of the worst of the series. The disc with dvd/magazine collection only included one version (not sure which one)

phantom    [30636.   Posted 17-Mar-2015 Tue 08:08]
  I found the story of Elton John regards Dolce & Gabbana interesting.
The BBC gave it wall to wall coverage on TV and radio.

At its heart it was a call for punitive action, because someone had voiced an opinion.

It perfectly chimes with the current trends of militancy whereby some seek to silence those who hold an opposing opinion.

The fact that Dolce was accused of being `anti-gay` for his comments when he is in fact himself homosexual shows just how insane the claims here have become.

You must conform to the mainstream view or people will seek to silence you. Here Dolce & Gabbana are threatened with economic sanctions unless they publicly repent and confirm that they `think right`.

There can be no doubt that we are looking at a form of censorship here. One facilitated by the new phenomenon of social media.

It seems to have struck next to none of the celebs lining up behind Elton John that maybe Dolce - in a supposedly free society - has every right to voice his opinion.
Whether one actually agrees with him or not, surely is irrelevant.
The man may say or think what he likes - without people `taking offence` and then seeking to exact their vengeance.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30635.   Posted 17-Mar-2015 Tue 01:37]

Never has so much power been granted to censorship by private company and they impose it so incredibly arbitrarily and ruthlessly. They can trash an entire company in a computer generated decision. Yet no one seems to bother opposing this except for the very few high profile cases where the naff rules get mass publicity.

braintree    [30634.   Posted 15-Mar-2015 Sun 14:13]
  Seems definite that Ebay will not allow listings for the Arrow UK release of Nekromantik. After someone else reported having theirs removed I put it down to traditional ebay incompetence but when I listed mine it too was removed . Their email explains it was removed under their "Violent Material" conditions. Not a single listing for the UK set but quite a few for the US release. I expect its still down to ebay incompetence and remains a flagged title going back to the days when it would have raised eyebrows and they`ve not bothered to remove it from their forbidden list. I had it happen to a dvd of I Spit On your Grave once when I listed the uncut US disc. But I just relisted that and it sold without a hitch. Will sell this one on Amazon at some point instead. Don`t think ebay would genuinely ban a title officially UK classified by the BBFC

Re todays Disney story. At the moment Disney is being run by idiots it would seem as their choices in titles to release on Bluray or not would indicate. No 3D discs in the US , many titles not released at all in the UK and of course the "restoration" of their animated titles has become farcical. But to the main issue of today which is smoking- and one of their earlier movies Melody Time was released on dvd quite some time ago and one of the characters in it Pecos Bill has been "adjusted" to remove the cigarette that he has in his mouth all the time so this smoking ban is not new. Curiously the US disc is edited but the existing UK dvd contains the unedited version.

phantom    [30633.   Posted 14-Mar-2015 Sat 17:36]
  re: Offsite Article: Are you reading too many books by straight white men?

The mind truly boggles.
I have always been staggered at there being a perceived need for a Bailey`s `Women`s prize for Fiction` these days.
But a call to boycott white male writers is so surreal it beggars belief.

Have any of these feminist darlings calling for such a boycott (or awarding female authors` prizes) ever heard of Agatha Christie, The Bronte Sisters, J.K.Rowling, Barbara Taylor Bradford or Jane Austen?

How could anyone ever conclude that women are discriminated against in writing and publishing?

One wonders. One truly wonders what goes on in their little heads. :)

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30632.   Posted 13-Mar-2015 Fri 19:13]
  Thanks goatboy, I will take a look

Maybe a bit political as opposed to politically correct, but I thought this interview over a pint with Nigel Farage is just about the most refreshing political piece I have read during the current election campaign.

goatboy    [30631.   Posted 13-Mar-2015 Fri 16:29]
  A guy was jailed for 4 months in Glasgow for singing the song `The Billy Boys` in public.

Slightly excessive. Have one hell of a task banning all songs with discriminatory language ultimately. Wonder if they`ll try to lift Eminem next time he`s over? ;)

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30630.   Posted 13-Mar-2015 Fri 04:34]
  No it isn`t odd. It just should be.

It may be quite fun to see a little unregulated electioneering on YouTube, just allowing them to swear at the opposition would be amusing.

phantom    [30629.   Posted 12-Mar-2015 Thu 07:41]
  On yesterday`s news (might have been Newsnight) the BBC alluded to how the political parties having a right ding dong online with negative campaign ads and video clips.
How so?
Because the same rules do not apply to political ads online as do for broadcasts and advertising hoardings.

Odd isn`t it? Given that the parties in question always claim to be very keen for the same rules which apply to the `real world` also to apply online.

But apparently not if it concerns them.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30628.   Posted 10-Mar-2015 Tue 04:49]

Indeed this linkage between the viewer and the rapist has been a major issue for the BBFC. Strangely this time round it doesn`t figure so much in the BBFC`s write up of their ban. Maybe because the details portrayed are not quite so clear. This time round seems more related to the relentless thuggery coupled with the racist setting.

Glenn Quagmire    [30627.   Posted 9-Mar-2015 Mon 10:33]
  I think I can see why the BBFC have banned "Hate Crime". I`ve seen the film and it seems to me that the biggest problem with the film is that it`s shot through a video camera so, in effect, you are the perpetrator. There`s a scene where a woman is raped over a pool table and the rapist films it. You see it from his viewpoint. It`s why they cut the remake of "I Spit On Your Grave".

phantom    [30626.   Posted 2-Mar-2015 Mon 18:14]
  re: Adultery law is found to be cheating on the people...

"The law is unconstitutional as it infringes people`s right to make their own decisions on sex and secrecy and freedom of their private life, violating the principle banning excessive enforcement under the constitution."

Must be nice to have a written constitution. What lucky few the South Koreans are.

Er, didn`t we fight for their freedom?

Ironic, isn`t it?

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30625.   Posted 1-Mar-2015 Sun 09:57]

A fascinating analysis that is very persuasive and I concur with most of it.

I don`t think you will be far wrong that the prevention strategies will be prove to be a blind alley and terrorism will continue unabated.

I would like to add though that more likely factors of religion, culture, money, opportunity and general intolerance may be equally futile to identify. These are the sort of factors, even if correctly identified, would take generations to lead people away from. I rather fear that there is nothing much we can do to make the problem go away.

phantom    [30624.   Posted 28-Feb-2015 Sat 18:50]
  I wonder. Is it only me who thinks this?
A doctrine seems to have sneaked into the nation`s thinking on terrorism, which seems to have originated from a rather familiar field – censorship of porn and violence.

Here`s what I mean.
The BBFC-style pseudo-scientific nonsense of people aping what they see in photos and film has effectively been accepted as official doctrine by the entire establishment.
Hence we`ve seen a whole raft of irrational legislation trying to bar the mere sight of things which might `harm` us.

But this thinking seems now to be polluting other areas of policy. (Always a danger with strictly doctrinal thinking.)

Where are all the Islamists getting radicalised? Why, on the internet, of course.
They see stuff and then become raving lunatics, foaming at the mouth.
Does this not sound oddly familiar?

Do we really believe that watching some preacher spouting the need to kill and destroy on youtube would turn anyone into some mindless drone wanting to chop people`s heads off.
Surely, such preachers can only preach to the converted.
Nobody else will ever grant them any credence.

Once again the notion of `vulnerable, young men` rears its ugly head.
Oh, of course it would not affect you and me. No. Only the `vulnerable`.

But I hold that no reasonable Muslim, no matter how devout, will watch some bloke in Yemen mouthing off about the need to slaughter and will then turn into a `sleeper` waiting for an opportune moment to attack the London Underground.
It`s just blatant nonsense.

But everyone in power subscribes to it.

The government (who want more powers over the net), the schools and Muslim society (who want to be absolved of any responsibility) and the press (who hate the internet with a passion, due to it gradually destroying their industry).

So the internet it is and something must be done.

The truth is that Islamist propaganda on the net is ludicrous.
Despite our being told how `sophisticated` it is, it is fairly idiotic, put together by people who have watched a few too many Rambo movies and think ninjas are cool.
If I see one more example of Jihadis dressed in black, attempting an assault course in which one of the obstacles is a burning circus ring through which to jump, I`ll have a seizure.

And if some bearded chap, trying to look regal, talking to camera, trying to explain why Allah perfectly justifies the killing of anything that moves, is supposed to be convincing, then why are not droves of other sects more successful?

If it`s that easy, then surely all the established churches, the moonies, jehova`s witnesses or the scientologists need to do is upload plenty of youtube clips and thousands will come flocking to their ranks. After all, it`s that simple to brainwash people into thinking what you think, if only it`s on camera.

Unless it`s all nonsense.

Unless, the wholesale embrace of BBFC-style doctrine into mainstream politics has led us down a blind alley.

Having taken a foolish idea, - namely that watching zombie films can turn you into a psycho-killer and that watching porn will turn you into a rapist, - and having applied it to a different subject we have drawn a totally wrong conclusion.

The war with the terrorists is not online.
Pointing to the fact that the various nutjobs who have killed had visited sites containing hate preachers or other pages expressing sympathy with terrorists means nothing.
Of course they visited such sites. Because they were Islamist nutjobs.
What other sites would we expect Islamist nutjobs to visit?

It`s the old fallacy of pointing to rapists having viewed porn.
Again the blatant transference of thinking is obvious.

The problem is that in the case of terrorism getting it wrong could literally mean the difference between life or death for some.

The problem of radicalisation of Muslims lies not on the net. It never has done. It never will do.
Finding where this radicalisation truly occurs is of the utmost importance.

But charging down blind allies due to the flawed thinking of self-appointed `experts` of mind-corruption at the BBFC in this case is not merely wasteful, but downright dangerous.

Opinions welcome....

Therumbler    [30623.   Posted 27-Feb-2015 Fri 16:50]
  I`ve had a brief search through Google and I can`t see any articles referring to this new law affecting Manwin and similar sites that might be based there.

Then again, how many times has Melonfarmers and a relatively few other sites/commentators looked at laws with big implications that have been ignored elsewhere until they`ve already been passed? Like they recent UK online porn laws, which were ignored by the media until they had come into effect.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30622.   Posted 27-Feb-2015 Fri 00:35]

I didn`t release that Manwin did operate from there. Yes could be a major issue. I think other major TV/video/internet companies operate from there too.

Therumbler    [30621.   Posted 26-Feb-2015 Thu 17:29]
  Does the new law in Luxembourg mean Manwin will have to leave?

Therumbler    [30620.   Posted 22-Feb-2015 Sun 16:36]
  I see Jack Straw`s political career is on the ropes. He wasn`t a man sympathetic to our general attitude to media, was he?

phantom    [30619.   Posted 13-Feb-2015 Fri 06:10]
  re: More people to be persecuted for extreme pornography...

"More nasty laws generated by crap politicians who seem to get a kick out of jailing innocent people"

Well put, Dave.
It has long appeared to me that the crass desire to interfere with other people`s sexual interests is in fact a sexual fetish of its own.

Personally, I regard it as a sort of molestation. Just as a woman might not appreciate having her behind grabbed at a bus station, so do I think most people abhor the government sticking its hand down their knickers in these incessant sexual prohibitions.

But chances are it is a sort of control fetish, - Fifty Shades of Westminster Grey, so to speak, - whereby certain people in power are actually sexually driven to these acts of sexual control.
Who knows, to those of a submissive bent, this `being controlled` may in fact prove gratifying.

But what is clear to me is that the drive to control our collective sexuality appears so compulsive that it may indeed be a syndrome.
You may be familiar with Stockholm Syndrome, the condition attributed to some victims of kidnapping, whereby they begin to bond with their captors.
Who knows, there may be such a thing as `Westminster Syndrome` whereby the mere act of being in power creates the irrational desire to delve into other people`s sexual habits and desires in order to interfere.

What is evident is that the symptoms displayed so vividly by politicians make it quite clear that the condition is highly abnormal...

phantom    [30618.   Posted 11-Feb-2015 Wed 12:28]

I agree with your summation of the Green Party. I too would rather see them as authoritarian than libertarian. As said, i can only imagine that their stance on animal rights is being counted as a huge plus on `civil liberties`. I cannot otherwise see how they can be so far in the liberal sphere on that graph.

As for UKIP however, I would point you to the very paragraph you`ve quoted.
It is an explanation why they are positioned so far to the right on the graph, not why they are positioned so far in the authoritarian domain.
The term `neoliberal` denotes macro-economic views, not anything to do with the libertarian/authoritarian spectrum.
So, no, the author is not, as you allege, denoting them as authoritarian for any NHS policy.
Just as with the Greens their position on the libertarian/authoritarian spectrum is unexplained.
I would very much like to know what the author`s thinking was.
But it is not apparent from that article alone.

freeworld    [30617.   Posted 11-Feb-2015 Wed 09:56]
  phantom [30615. Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 15:34]

"... the first election in which UKIP is.. seen in its true a deeply conservative one that largely endorses the neoliberal agenda. Nigel Farage’s recent shift from unequivocal support for health care free at the point of use underlines this reality."

- Political compass

Clearly this writer thinks advocating an insurance based health service system - as operated in many western countries, makes you more of an "authoritarian"! I certainly don`t accept that. Or that economic "neoliberalism" has much bearing on making a society more "authoritarian" at all. In fact, I believe the opposite - the more "neoliberal", the less statist and thus authoritarian a society will usually be. China under Mao and the USSR under Stalin and co were scarcely "neoliberal" economically, but extremely authoritarian - in fact, totalitarian (same goes for Nazi Germany which had a highly state interventionist command economy - though business/industry was still largely privately owned, the economy was massively state directed and that state was very socially interventionist too - nothing "neoliberal" about it - just like the communist ones, it was authoritarian/totalitarian).

This kind of highly statist approach to society and the economy is very much along the same lines as the one the Green party offers; here it`s being promoted as a "cuddly" version of what is actually the same old "we know what`s best for you" (and we are going to give it to you!) authoritarianism - statist intervention/direction from macro to micro levels - a programme for the greenly sanctimonious statist.

As CS Lewis put it so very well decades ago -

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron`s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

― C.S. Lewis

Non authoritarian, indeed!

DoodleBug    [30616.   Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 23:51]
  Woke up this morning to find an email from Ebay saying that they have removed a listing of mine for a DVD because it violates their policy on violent content.

The title in question ??? Nekromantik. A film which is now perfectly legal to own in the UK !

What makes this even more laughable is that it was a listing that was closed because someone bought it yesterday !

Doing a search on Ebay for Nekromantik still shows results from other sellers. If i remember rightly didn`t a similar thing happen a few years ago when someone listed the "Box of the Banned" boxset from Anchor Bay ?

phantom    [30615.   Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 15:34]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30613]
freeworld [30614]
On the whole I`d say it`s a very laudable attempt at a graphic
depiction of political positions.

Yes, I too am a little perplexed as to how the Greens got to be so far into libertarian territory.
No policies spring to mind which would put them there. Yes, they support legalisation of prostitution, but that policy alone cannot make up for that huge gap.
I suspect that the creator of the graph takes the Green`s commitment to animal rights and welfare into consideration, thus equating civil rights with animal rights. Not very helpful.

But all in all, one thing becomes clear.
There simply is no meaningful representation of liberal views in UK politics today.
It demonstrates that the democratic choice presented to the people today is a false one.
One is permitted to choose between right and left, but the most liberal minded nation on earth is not given any liberal choices, lest they choose them....

As for your comment on health, Freeworld, I think the comment on UKIP being neo-liberal is aimed at their economic policy (i.e. liberal=`laisser faire` economic policy), which I guess is code for `right-wing`. Which is where the health service comes into it.
so I don`t think one is saying their views on health service make them authoritarian.

As such I am surprised at how authoritarian UKIP are portrayed in that graph. Sure, they`d be tough on immigration, which would surely push them up that scale, but I can`t really point to any great number of harsh, authoritarian policies. Personally, I would suspect they would be authoritarians, but I cannot actually point to anything solid.

Than again, I guess much of that graph must be done by feel.
But it`s a very creditable attempt. I applaud whoever did it.

freeworld    [30614.   Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 09:48]
  Melon Farmers (Dave) [30613. Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 04:13]
If you look at the Green programme they`re horribly authoritarian/bossy on a whole range of issues.They are in many ways an embodiment of student union authoritarian PC, even more than Labour. Though at least they want to decriminalize the sex industry and treat animals decently. The site is very misleading when it comes to who is authoritarian and who isn`t. I don`t see how "authoritarian" comes into how you have a health service financed. Using that kind of odd yardstick the old USSR would have been less authoritarian than the USA.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30613.   Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 04:13]
  Nearly all UK political parties unsurprisingly classed as `authoritarian` rather than libertarian.

And given that Caroline Lucas called for the banning of the Sun and is generally a PC extremist on feminist issues, then I am not sure how the Green Party got away being classified on the libertarian side.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30612.   Posted 10-Feb-2015 Tue 01:31]
  Thanks braintree

That seems to explain the loose ends, I will update the lists accordingly

braintree    [30611.   Posted 9-Feb-2015 Mon 14:48]
  It seems the uncut 15 rated version of Maze Runner is exclusively available on UK Bluray via the HMV Steelbook version which carries the 15 certificate. The cut 12 version is on all other UK releases. The US disc is uncut

phantom    [30610.   Posted 9-Feb-2015 Mon 14:31]

While it is true that these days it appears that militancy is on the march everywhere (I shudder at what monsters our universities are creating right now), I do think it especially worrying when parliamentarians get ever more trigger happy.

Right now it is very hard to find any person who has actually got a say in the matter of making law, who seems the slightest bit interested in liberties and rights.

There seems to be no inclination by anyone to restrain the law, to stifle the march of the state.
No, the state is a universal good. Anything the state does is good by default.
Anyone who questions the state apparently sides with the terrorists, paedophiles and criminals.

Nobody in a position of power seems to have the slightest doubts whether intervention has any downsides.
Telling people what to do - more, what to think - now appears to be the very purpose for which the state was created.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30609.   Posted 9-Feb-2015 Mon 13:53]

I don`t think it`s true to limit your observation to politicians. It seems that half the world is trying to tell the other half what to think, say and do. And the other half doesn`t like it.

We seem to be engineering a very fractious world

phantom    [30608.   Posted 8-Feb-2015 Sun 19:25]
  Will not someone save us from these censorious morons?

Is there a single liberal minded politician left in the country?

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30607.   Posted 8-Feb-2015 Sun 14:33]
  I haven`t checked it out yet but this tweet amused me

"50 nuances de Grey interdit aux -12 ans en France! C`est la classification de Madame Doubtfire en Angleterre"

MichaelG    [30606.   Posted 8-Feb-2015 Sun 01:17]
  Re: American Sharia...

UK: Passed 12A uncut for racial stereotyping

Perhaps someone should point out to the BBFC that this would be religious stereotyping being that Muslim is not a race...

phantom    [30605.   Posted 6-Feb-2015 Fri 07:29]
  re: Applying BBFC rules to real life...

There we are. It`s happened. Once again.
Calls for censorship of the news on grounds of taste and morality.
Not that it`s not already the case that news broadcasters refuse to show us things which are `too graphic to broadcast`.
No, we need more cuts. (News vetted by the BBFC perhaps? Paid for of course.)

So let`s be clear, the news reports facts. (or at least it should do)
Terrorist violence is a fact. Imagery of terrorist violence is imagery of fact.
Andreas Whittam Smith believes it might be a good idea to withhold facts.

Some truths, it is best for us not to know.
It`s for our own good.

So where is the line, Mr Whittam Smith?

You deem the pilot`s execution off limits.
But what about the burning twin towers? Should we only be told that happened? But not shown?

Or what Abu Ghraib? That was in bad taste too, wasn`t it, Mr Whittam Smith? So best for us not to see that truth either.
Whole episodes of inconvenient truths could be disappeared.

A democracy depends heavily on its population being informed.
An uninformed populace can be led to vote for a Hitler.

And talking of Hitler, are the old pictures and films from the concentration camps also too tasteless for us to see?
All those emaciated bodies being bulldozed into pits?

Where do you cease to sanitise history?

The truth is, Mr Andreas Whittam Smith, you are a moralising, puritan moron; no doubt your chief qualification for being hired for the BBFC.

The truth has a value. It far outweighs any blether of taste and decency you might have picked up on some BBFC seminar.

I suggest you go live in North Korea. I`m told they have no nasty imagery on their news. You`d be happy there.

Bon voyage.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30604.   Posted 5-Feb-2015 Thu 17:07]

And today we have ASA banning adult adverts for adult viewers watching children`s content, assuming that the adult must be watching with children.

phantom    [30603.   Posted 5-Feb-2015 Thu 04:52]
  re: A Bum Steer

I love that article.
So the means of advertising must have something to do with the product?
Thus a skimpily clad lady has nothing to do with steering wheels...

Ok, let`s test that theory.
What, pray, has an orangutan got to do with SSE Energy?
What has a meerkat got to do with a comparison site?
Er... What has the ITV Digital monkey got to do with PG Tips Tea?
Best of all, what has six-pack lawnmower man got to do with Diet Coke?
One could go on and on....

What is obvious is that the ASA statement doesn`t hold up to even the most perfunctory scrutiny.

The truth is selling steering wheels has to do with cars.
It was Sigmund Freud`s nephew, Edward Bernays (who invented modern PR), who famously used sex in adverts to sell cars.
Ever since Bernays used his uncle`s findings to appeal to the consumer`s subconscious in order to sell goods, products related to cars have been sold with sexual references.
One would think the ASA would know that....

This just seems to be another attempt at attacking `lads mags` culture. What are we to find hanging from the walls of car repair garages if not pics of page three girls and sexy adverts for car parts?
Do we really expect them to display posters of characters out of Jane Austen novels instead?
Or six pack diet coke men? :)

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30602.   Posted 4-Feb-2015 Wed 01:04]
  Indeed phantom.

And of course there is the Daily Mail and the likes to consider. They could have a field day given the opportunity to accuse the BBFC of being too liberal with a 15 rating.

phantom    [30601.   Posted 3-Feb-2015 Tue 16:05]
  I can see how one could think the distributor might argue for an 18 certificate for fear of it else being seen as too tame.

But given the BBFC`s record on fetish, I don`t think there`s a chance in hell of `Fifty Shades of Grey` being deemed anything but an 18.

`Secretary` and `The Notorious Betty Page` have nothing remarkable in them. Yet both are 18 certificates.
But what they share is a fetish theme.
So does `Fifty Shades of Grey`.

Fetish is the equivalent of a nun-chak to the BBFC.
They will simply not permit anything fetish, whether it contains any nudity or not, under 18.
Truth be told - fetish is the new gay.

It would have amounted to a miracle to see `Fifty Shades of Grey` awarded a lesser certificate than 18, given current BBFC policy.
It`s their bias, bigotry and prejudice that counts - and we all know what it is.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30600.   Posted 3-Feb-2015 Tue 15:27]
  Re Fifty Shades

Iceland has chipped in with a 16 rating whilst Ontario has joined the UK with an 18A rating.

So the majority so far have given the film less than an 18 rating. I guess the UK distributor asked for an 18, and the BBFC kindly obliged.

And as for the tangled mess that the publicity department has got in trying to sex it up...well I think we are rather expert at detecting double speak bullshit, we get it fed constantly by politicians and the like. I guess most movie goers will be waiting on the reviews.

phantom    [30599.   Posted 3-Feb-2015 Tue 08:04]
  Dave, was there really ever a chance of the BBFC awarding a 15 certificate?

I don`t think so.
See examples below. Both BBFC 18 certificates.

I`m sorry, but I just don`t believe there was ever the faintest chance of `Shades of Grey` being anything other than an 18.

sergio    [30598.   Posted 3-Feb-2015 Tue 08:00]
  And as the flying puffters are seen gently smashing their brittle bodies after being thrown off a tall building we get this shit.

So we have strong sex which isn`t explicit, or as Taylor-Johnson says `graphically explicit`. In the Mail on sunday of Feb 1 2014 page 19 she says `I didn`t want it to be graphically explicit, and I know that`s going to be disappointing to some people`.

We have an erotic film that isn`t erotic. An explicit film that isn`t explicit.

Whoosh - there goes another gay guy crashing down...

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30597.   Posted 2-Feb-2015 Mon 08:03]
  Fifty Shades of Grey gets an 18 rating.

I bet the distributors were relieved that it wasn`t a 15.,35PDI,8X4Z3A,BBE0H,1

phantom    [30596.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 18:40]
  re: Judged too small a sample...

"This one case has left me in no doubt that the wearing of wigs in a professional capacity has a tremendous effect on an individual.
The judicial wigs available today are simply horrific and play a real part in the rotting of the brain."

Sorry. I just couldn`t resist.

But, if I understand correctly, this judge has himself seen this horrific imagery. As he attributes such power to this imagery, what is he planning to do about himself? Is he referring himself into custody?
Having seen these images he now - according to his own logic - represents a clear and present danger.

Frankly, I`m worried.
Why does this judge not do the honourable thing and section himself?
After all, he has seen those pictures.
We can`t have him turning into a psychotic killer at any moment.
This is intolerable.
Won`t someone think of the children?
The Lord Chief Justice must be incarcerated now. Immediately.
For all our sakes.

Therumbler    [30595.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 17:31]
  Did you know that is blocked on Sky`s default filter?

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30594.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 17:22]
  Thanks Braintree, I`ll get it fixed tomorrow. The 2 version release has been confirmed by Michael Brooke, the producer.

braintree    [30593.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 14:42]
  I should point out that the story about the Arrow release Day of Anger may need correcting . According to the Arrow site an 86 minute and 114 minute version are included. The listing almost put me off buying the movie until I looked a bit more into it.They seem to be listed as the Italian Version and the International Version as your listing does but the main bit on the news page says "being released in a shortened version". The Arrow page is updated with the running times . I think the story should add those as the headline of the story is a bit misleading

phantom    [30592.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 05:13]
  freeworld {30591}

I definitely agree with you that much of feminist rhetoric in fact dis-empowering women.
Every woman is cast the victim.

Fear is used as a powerful weapon. Rapists are everywhere. It`s a world of predators. Ludicrous statistics suggest one in four women are subject to sexual violence. Tens of thousands of women are trafficked and forced into sexual slavery in this country alone.

Moreover, women are not to make their own decisions as many will make the `wrong` choices, because they`re brainwashed by the patriarchy.
Their competency and right to consent is taken by the lawmakers, considered merely `notional consent`, not the real consent of the kind a man would give.

So yes, I see recent notions championed by militant feminists - and accepted by the political class - as detrimental to women - and to feminism itself.

To this day I say that the mainstay of feminism ought to be mundane tasks like making sure that dinner ladies and cleaning ladies get the equivalent rates of pay. But those sort of battles have simply been seconded to the unions. Those subjects are not sufficiently controversial to get lots of media attention.
When have you last heard Harriet Harman or Dianne Abbot stand up for equal pay for working class women?
In truth I cannot remember ever hearing them mention the subject.

freeworld    [30591.   Posted 31-Jan-2015 Sat 04:12]
  phantom {30589. Posted 29-Jan-2015 Thu 18:18}

Also, Saunders is apparently saying if someone was an employer etc of that "victim" it could be, well, very very difficult to say no to them when it comes to sex ( but apparently not so hard to later go to the police and report that individual for rape!).Until it`s understood that the ideological misandrist "hate" wing of "feminism" regards ALL sexual activity between male and female as rape, and they are trying to criminalize potentially as many circumstances as they can by shrieking to an (always open to pandering to noisy minority pressure groups) political class, you can`t properly appreciate what is going on here.

Of course, this doesn`t just demonize men, it turns women not into the mature, empowered individuals real feminism should be concerned with, but into helpless perpetual victims, not in control of themselves, but of irresistible external influences - males you just can`t say no to, despite there being no overt threat; alcohol, which apparently can render women into states where they are legally not responsible for what they are doing, whereas a man is invariably completely responsible for his actions, criminally responsible (even if he`s as drunk as the woman). All patronizing and irrational, but it`s this that May (an even greater disaster in the home office than Straw and Blunkett) is seeking to enshrine, not just in guidelines for the police, but in criminal law itself, with the new offence she wants to create of "emotional abuse" by adults to other adult (a proposed law that Mail on line commenters overwhelmingly disagreed with, but another triumph for the pressure group extremists).

If you look at the many comments on the Mail on line article, 99% take the opposite view to the line being peddled - they can see quite well the dangerous scenarios for defining "rape" which are being constructed by a political class which always panders to noisy extremists these days. As the government seemingly listens closely to Mumsnet opinions, you can bet its been heavily infiltrated by the unrepresentative misandrist hate groups for that very reason.

phantom    [30590.   Posted 30-Jan-2015 Fri 09:07]
  Here`s another twist on censorship.
Taylor Swift now claims to own bits of the Oxford English Dictionary, I guess.

If that`s the game we`re now playing, I`d like to trademark the words `The`, `And` and `Hello`.

phantom    [30589.   Posted 29-Jan-2015 Thu 18:18]
  freeworld [30588]

Well, first off some of the Daily Mail verbiage is shockingly wrong.

"Date rape suspects will now need to prove that a woman consented as part of tough new rules on the way sex offence cases are investigated."

That part is just plainly inept reporting. Providing such `proof` would in fact be impossible. It isn`t what the changes contain.

"....Alison Saunders, said she wanted police to ask suspects how they knew the alleged victim was saying yes, and was doing so `freely and knowingly."

It is the above part which is actually the true change being proposed.
But I agree, it sounds dubious.

"The rules also aims to stop suspects using social media to construct ‘false narratives’ to help cover their tracks."

That part sounds highly controversial to me. If you were accused of rape by a person, would it really be unreasonable of you to see what that person is stating they actually did in facebook, etc?

To my mind, the rise in rape claims means
a) either more men are raping
b) more women are making false allegations

However, to suggest b) is "sexist, detrimental to justice", yadda yadda... "Jimmy Savile" yadda yadda...
Thus, it must be a). Not because we know it to be. But because it must be. Because certain circles want it to be.

And because those circles have votes...

This coming election is going to see a great chase for the female vote. (Or better for particular sections of the female vote)
The pollsters have been predicting this for some time now.

I`m afraid this is part of this game.
(Btw, tightening up on internet porn was also just to placate the mumsnet crowd - 6 months before a general election. Thus exactly the same thing.)

freeworld    [30588.   Posted 29-Jan-2015 Thu 16:12]
  Gruesome Alison Saunders of the CPS has brilliantly devised a wizard way of boosting the rape figures - ie to get unsafe, dubious allegations treated seriously to up the stats. Next gerrymandering court evidence to stack the deck against the defendant - when juries still aren`t convicting enough, well, they`ll just get rid of the juries. After all, we lost centuries of double jeopardy protection, the right to silence protection, have secret courts; the scrapping of trial by jury has already got a precedent, nailed in by New Labour. I suppose Cameron wants to preside over a government in which rape crime "seems" (it actually isn`t) to be "exploding". The stupidity/evil of the Triad political class never ceases to amaze.
The odious Saunders preaching to the choir is uncritically (natch!) reported by the Mail today.

phantom    [30587.   Posted 29-Jan-2015 Thu 08:02]
  re: Sabreman64 [30586]
I wonder whether Stephen Glover has got any sort of rational explanation regarding how it is possible that sexual offences numbers have been falling for years now despite this `vile porn` being everywhere `to poison men`s minds`.

Sabreman64    [30586.   Posted 29-Jan-2015 Thu 05:35]
  Daily Mail columnist rants about porn warping men`s minds:

phantom    [30585.   Posted 28-Jan-2015 Wed 05:38]
  In that case.

I also don`t believe in censorship....
I think books like these ought to be banned.

"There would be many who would argue" that banning these books would prevent future warmongering, protect Magna Carta and prevent the imposition of arbitrary bans and prohibitions.

Not that I`m saying this material should be banned, of course.
But I`m saying we should have a national debate... and then ban it.

Then again, I bet Thomas Docherty MP would not agree with the above.
Why? Well, see the link below.

Ironically, in that mock picture, the statue is almost performing the Nazi salute.... How fitting. :)

goatboy    [30584.   Posted 27-Jan-2015 Tue 21:03]
  LOL at wanting Mein Kampf banned. It`s not exactly political pornography, the introduction on one of the editions of it points out it`s "lengthy, dull, bombastic, repetitious and extremely badly written". They`re not wrong.

Therumbler    [30583.   Posted 27-Jan-2015 Tue 17:28]
  I see the Daily Mail`s off on one again.

And this is another pearl of wisdom from our leaders:

phantom    [30582.   Posted 26-Jan-2015 Mon 14:11]
  re: Lest it `offends` the terrorists...

What a very strange article.
The BBC seems to be suggesting that they are very careful and considerate when using the term `terrorist`.
But I know them to be quite fast and loose with the term in some respects.

Not to call the acts in Paris `terrorist` is plainly ridiculous.
It begs the question, if those acts were not, then what is?

But take the BBC`s reporting on ISIS/ISIL in Syria and `terrorism` is used frequently and indiscriminately. Such use is highly questionable, but - given the arrests of people returning from Syria - that use appears government sanctioned.

With the BBC being so keen to designate ISIS a terror organisation, it makes their refusal to dub the Paris attackers, - a much more clear cut case, - all the more extraordinary.

Gunning down journalists and Jews in a metropolis, just for the hell of it, seems to me the epitome of terrorism.
Taking part in a civil war on the other hand, does not.

This bizarre bias on part of the BBC seems to suggest that one is trying to please some political master.

This in turn makes their insistence on being particularly careful in their use of the term `terrorist` all the more strange.

sergio    [30581.   Posted 25-Jan-2015 Sun 07:35]
A bit of playful deconstruction, form and content play.

phantom    [30580.   Posted 25-Jan-2015 Sun 04:29]
  I`m sorry, but why call them *****?
Why not ISIS or ISIL?
Why be afraid of an abbreviation?

sergio    [30579.   Posted 25-Jan-2015 Sun 03:52]
  Censored because of proper gander (quack, quack)? The BBC seems to be a strange biz. Ripping other media off lawfully. Last night the Beeb, on the News Channel in the `The Papers` section at 10:30pm seemed to redact/censor an image of a Japanese prisoner held by ***** . I thought the worst when I saw the headline (no pun intended) next to the blank space. It said `Beheading...`. Ouch, I thought, are they showing the dead and lifeless body of a decapitated man? No, according to Sky News who didn`t redact/censor the image it was an image of a Japanese prisoner showing a caption or something (the beheading refered to the other prisoner, who yet to be confirmed dead). Martine Croxall had some sort of explanation that I didn`t understand. The Beeb were being sensitive or something or not trying to publish ***** propaganda. The less sensitive Sky news seemed to have no problem. If they want to stop ***** propaganda then maybe they should stop showing anything from *****.

Pray tell who categorised `fellatio` as an `extreme sex act`? Maybe in a muslim country a man looking at another man`s eyes is an `extreme sex act`.

sergio    [30578.   Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 16:28]
  Might be off topic but seems like this documentary

used some Harrison Marks footage of Lorraine Burnette -
Doco image cap

at about 25mins in
Harrison Marks films start about 1958 - 2nd world war about 1939 to 1945.

freeworld    [30577.   Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 09:32]
  Well it does look as if the Sun wasn`t caving in to the screechers after all - I`m no fan of the paper, but good on `em for having a laugh at the expense of the righteous. This might even be a (sadly rare) example of a push back against the gaggle of canting miserablists.

Sabreman64 [30575. Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 02:43]
I really doubt plain packs figures much in the scheme of things as a potent electoral issue. It`s irrelevant anyway, if you support any of the "Triad", for not one of those "different parties" (well, the three headed hydra) will commit against compulsory plain packs - all of them favour it (in the case of the Tories many of their MPs don`t, but the leadership does, which is what matters). Say hello again to the good old cigarette case - to be decorated how people want them! I feel like starting smoking again just so I can get a case emblazened with colourful pictures of hotties - drive the think of the children "normalization" brigade into spasms of righteous fury.

For ages Labour have been assaulting the Tories about them being tardy over introducing plain packs for cigarettes. There is no chance Edweird Minibrain will oppose this - he is, as they say, "gagging (or should it be gasping in this case?) for it! Labour passed the comprehensive smoking ban, which did little to endear them to many of their traditional supporters, forced to go outside and shudder with cold or get drenched if they wanted a fag. Labour also brought in the ludicrous "hide all cig packets in shops" law. And Labour have pledged to introduce plain packs. As a party they are far more committed on it than the Tory rank and file MPs are - as opposed to the dept of health and its current ministers (when the pro plain packs minister brought it up last time in parliament she was barracked - but only by MPs from her own Tory party).

On the comprehensive public places ban and display ban, the Tories voted against these policies in opposition. In government they kept them - though on the display ban they provided an exemption for non supermarket retailers until this year (retailers had argued that the cost of altering their shelves etc would be too great for them, businesses were struggling with a flat economy at the time).

If you`ve seen the Labour policies on health announced very recently - plain packs and all, it`s a nanny`s charter. But essentially this government is little different in power when it comes to banning, regulating, censoring, nagging and creating rotten/nanny state laws and regulations.

"We rage that, as we go about our business, we are picked and poked and bossed around, annoyed and irritated and endlessly harassed by public and private sector officialdom that treats us like children with rules and regulations and directives and laws that no one voted for, no one supports, but no one ever seems to be able to do the slightest thing about.”

- David Cameron, arch hypocrite, when in opposition.

For all it matters what I think in the scheme of things, the reduction of sugar in foods policy is a sound one (though it is there in excess because the "experts" and the orthodoxy pandering politicians blamed fat wrongly for health problems in the past - and it was replaced by lots of sugar - hence the obesity problems now) - unlike a lot of other rubbish. Though they made an attempt at sugar reduction during their last time in power, Labour bottled it when the food industry told them in no uncertain terms where to go.

phantom    [30576.   Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 07:19]
  Yes, it is rather ludicrous that there appears to be the belief that folks smoke, because the packages look nice. It once more is a faith.
A faith that there are vulnerable people out there there who can be led astray simply with brightly coloured cardboard.
Oh, not you or I, of course. But others. Vulnerable people.

It is a faith which is everywhere these days.
We all know it originated in the anti porn movement.
But now we even find it in ideas about combatting islamist radicalisation.
As with all dogma, it sooner or later spreads into every nook and cranny.

The irony course is that the government approach aims to be offensive. Yes, think about it.
`We`ll plaster the packets in ghastly, hideous pictures,` goes the mantra.
Yes, offensive pictures, say I.

So in an age when causing offence is the greatest crime, offensive pictures on cigarette packets are ok.
I can but chuckle.

I understand the desire to stop people smoking.
But I do not think this is the way to do it. Who knows, it might be effective, although I doubt it.
However, things need not only be effective, they need to be right in principle.
Telling manufacturers of a legal product that they need to make it look ugly and repulsive is highly questionable to me - in principle.

And I`m speaking as someone who has never smoked a cigarette in his life. So I hardly have a reason to be biased.

But who knows, maybe there is an answer here.
I may be willing to agree to this in principle, if it also applies to political advertisements.

So the next posters to go up advertising Labour and the Conservatives; if 75% of the available area is covered by photographic depictions of gum disease or genital warts and only 25% is left - in plain grey, of course - to contain the party political message; then I might come round to this idea.

After all, there are many vulnerable people out there.
It`s important not to corrupt them. ;)

Sabreman64    [30575.   Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 02:43]
  The health fascists are to ban branded cigarette packaging. Once they`ve finished with tobacco, they`ll go after chocolate, sweets, chocolate and fizzy drinks. After all, "sugar is the new tobacco". So don`t be surprised to see legislation brought in some time in the next decade or so banning branded packaging of sugary foods.

There is one reason, and one reason alone that the idiot Cameron is having this vote on cigarette packaging before the election. It`s one of his last hopes of winning the election. A victory here will boost his election chances. If Miliband and Labour had any sense (which they haven`t), they would oppose this, and deny Cameron a victory in the run up to the election.

Miliband and his fellow Labour morons are so stupid they don`t deserve to win power. They`re going to end up giving us another five years of Cameron and his Tory fools.

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30574.   Posted 22-Jan-2015 Thu 02:23]

Well it seems the Sun is having a little fun. It will be interesting to see how the PC world responds to the return of Page 3

freeworld    [30572.   Posted 20-Jan-2015 Tue 09:07]
  Melonfarmers(or someone)needs to start an on line petition "Bring back page 3" - and we need to try to get more signatures than the screeching minority of prigs did - blow theirs out of the water.

As Phantom has pointed out, they won`t stop here, the self righteous, sanctimonious banstibastors just gain strength from every little victory like this. They are an unrepresentative minority attempting to dictate by bullying what everyone else can do, see, buy etc. The Guardian comments on this story are a good indicator of the terrifying, fanatical mindset of these obsessive nutters.

I blame the infection of this pathetic but totalitarian ideology to a large extent on the politicians with their idiotic mania over getting half of the population of young people into higher education - where naive young minds are brainwashed with the poisonous guff of "victim" culture.

sergio    [30571.   Posted 20-Jan-2015 Tue 08:47]
  Je Suis Page3

phantom    [30570.   Posted 20-Jan-2015 Tue 06:59]
  Brilliant link Sergio.

The Sun`s Page 3 was a bastion. Something for the demagogues and naysayers to rail against. As long as it held, other subjects were safe.
The fall of Page 3, the Sun`s page 3 that is, is thus a serious matter.

The enemy hordes will not rest a moment, but charge onward, at whatever feeble defences can be erected at other points.

Personally, I have never understood the point of topless girls in newspapers. But the libertarian principle behind it was an important one.
It needn`t make sense. Whether logical, necessary or not, the point was simply, why should there not be pictures of topless girls in a newspaper? What right would anyone have to deny it?

And the fact that politicians feared the press barons was equally important. If the press is now moving away from a defence of page 3, it means that zealous politicians will no longer need to fear the press when waging war on nipples.

The victory will now no doubt further strengthen the claims that:
a) nudity demeans and objectifies women,
b) sight of nudity causes harm.
For it is clear that campaigners will insist that the press are backing down, because they have come to accept their arguments.

The truth of course is that no rational argument has ever been made to substantiate their claims. Making these claims noisily doesn`t make them right.

As someone who has known various page 3 girls over time, I know for sure that they were neither exploited, nor oppressed. Moreover, their page 3 appearances, if anything, were a source of pride.
And they disliked having it rubbished.

But yes, Singapore has fallen, gentlemen.
I shudder at what may happen next...

sergio    [30569.   Posted 20-Jan-2015 Tue 03:20]
  Je suis Page3

I don`t think we have enough tits in the world.

Sabreman64    [30568.   Posted 20-Jan-2015 Tue 02:55]
  So the spineless Sun have caved in to the miserable killjoy feminazis.

Phantom, I presume these modern day Mary Whitehouses will now focus their attention on any remaining tabloids carrying topless pictures of models. Do the Daily Star or Sunday Sport print such pictures? (I see from Wikipedia that the Daily Sport no longer has a print version.)

They`ll probably also set their sights on lads` and top shelf mags (the likes of Zoo, Razzle, Mayfair etc). These killjoys aren`t likely to stop at the Sun`s Page 3, are they?

phantom    [30567.   Posted 19-Jan-2015 Mon 17:11]
  Newsnight tonight (19/1/15) postulated the same thing: The Sun`s Page 3 most likely dead.

So yes, no doubt all the feminist campaigners will now stop and go home, right? They wouldn`t just move on to demanding something else, would they? Surely, not...

Therumbler    [30566.   Posted 19-Jan-2015 Mon 17:05]
  According to the Times Page 3 is finished in the Sun.

phantom    [30565.   Posted 18-Jan-2015 Sun 15:21]
  The great leader speaks!

David `Mandela` Cameron announces that it is perfectly ok, in a free society, to offend someone - as long as it`s within the law.
It`s apparently not his job to tell people what to publish or what not to publish. His job is merely to uphold the law.

He seems to forget - temporarily - that, as prime minister, he is the man who proposes law and then uses his party`s whip`s office to see it passed by parliament. So by passing law he is very much the man who tells people what they cannot publish.
It must have slipped his mind...

The hypocrisy brought on by the whole `Charlie Hebdo` affair is limitless, it appears.
Everyone is keen to be seen defending `western values`. This despite just about every politician in the land being engaged in the continual dismantling of western freedoms of expression.

So David `call me ATVOD` Cameron is here actually purporting that he is not a censorious type, claiming in a free society we have a right to cause offence.
But he further claims that there is no right to wreak vengeance as a result of offence.

I wonder whether all those British citizens arrested, prosecuted and jailed for viewing offensive material, or for having said something offensive on his watch will agree with his being quite so free spirited.
Some might say he is very much the man who likes exacting vengeance on those who do something to offend - by sticking them behind bars.

Saying that your job is only to see that people publish things within the law is incredibly two-faced, when you are clearly engaged in tightening the law to such an extent that the pips aren`t squeaking, - they`re bloody screaming by now.

For the latest champion for the banning of bad ideas to drape himself in the mantle of free expression is quite sickening.

I can only assume that integrity and truthfulness are not values which Eton tries to impart onto its pupils these days.

phantom    [30564.   Posted 18-Jan-2015 Sun 07:33]
  What? :)

sergio    [30563.   Posted 18-Jan-2015 Sun 03:46]
  If someone cussed my mother would I punch them or machine gun them? It depends.

sergio    [30562.   Posted 17-Jan-2015 Sat 14:42]
  Does Miley Cyrus produce kinder pornographie on instagram?

goatboy    [30561.   Posted 15-Jan-2015 Thu 19:50]
  Would assume 50 shades will be an 18 regardless of whatever content is in it. It`s presumably the rating the distributor would want, and I can`t see the bbfc being arsed with the shit storm there would be in the press if they gave it a 15.

phantom    [30560.   Posted 13-Jan-2015 Tue 17:45]
  re: Fetish Theme...

I don`t think the 18 rating of the Duke of Burgundy has anything to do with preparing the ground for the 50 Shades of Grey movie.
Far more it is perfectly in-keeping with the BBFC`s bias toward all things fetish and BDSM.
Let`s not forget `the Notorious Bettie Page` which also received an 18 certificate. Something which is almost impossible to explain, given the film itself.
But the BBFC hate fetish.
They are effectively at war with it.
They are not alone. The government are right behind them.
Let`s not forget at whom the DPA was mainly targeted.

The BBFC`s war on fetish stems from an irrational bias which can only be compared to the nun-chak ban some years ago.
It is not based on any sound reasoning whatsoever, but instead is derived purely from personal dislike and hostile dogma.

As long as we have censors we will have the banning of concepts and ideas purely on the basis of personal beliefs and bias.

The only hope we have is to one day rid ourselves of the censors.
As for the BBFC, they are beyond reform.

phantom    [30559.   Posted 13-Jan-2015 Tue 09:24]
  sergio [30558]
Sounds as though they`ve caved in.
I for one, sent a complaint. I`m sure others will have too.
In my complaint I pointed out that other news platforms were showing the picture; that the Beeb was displaying editorial cowardice.

All through the evening and night of 12/1/15 they were describing in words what was on the front page, but refusing to show it.
If there was any lesson from Paris it was not to bow to the fear of offence. And here they were reporting on Paris, but missing the central point the story was about; namely for the west to stick to its values.

I can`t help but wonder how many folks complained.
I suspect they were embarrassed into giving in.

sergio    [30558.   Posted 13-Jan-2015 Tue 06:55]
  13 jan 2014 - BBC1 1pm with Sophie Rayworth news had film of the cover of Charlie Hebdo with `Muhammad wearing a “Je suis Charlie” badge` - actually looks like he is holding up a sign - mighty big badge.

phantom    [30557.   Posted 12-Jan-2015 Mon 21:20]
  What is missing in this BBC article?

On Newsnight Evan Davies almost showed it to the camera, but clearly was instructed by the little voice in his ear, not to.

So, the BBC remain as ball-less as ever.

braintree    [30556.   Posted 10-Jan-2015 Sat 14:45]
  The neanderthal morons who did the killing in Paris apparently wanted to die as martyrs. How ironic then that history will remember them as needing a gun , running scared and eventually dying because they were scared of cartoons.
All religions can be and have been ridiculed . The strongest ones move on and ignore satirical / comedic comments. The weakest ones for which many of its followers clearly show they have no confidence in it come out literally guns blazing because they know their "cause" is bollocks.
The only good Jihadist is a dead one . And none are brave unless they are holding a gun or a bomb - pussies.

phantom    [30555.   Posted 10-Jan-2015 Sat 13:17]
  Мария [30554]

So just to get this straight?
The cartoonists at `Charlie Hebdo` spat in your mother`s face in front of you? They then posted nude pictures of your sister on the net? And finished by defecating on your grandfather`s medals?

Because this seems to be what your point is suggesting.
The problem is, I don`t believe they ever did that to you.

I think you`re just a nasty little man who has issues with some of the things Charlie Hebdo printed in their magazine.
And now you like the fact that they`re gone.
Because now they won`t be doing things anymore of which you disapprove.
So yes, no problem someone shot the court jester, ey?

Human society evolves. Yes, it`s an evolution. The ascent of man is not only from the ape to his current shape, but so too from the cave dweller to the modern citizen of the world.
However, some of us are less evolved than others. Some just see those who have striven on ahead as decadent and depraved, simply because they cannot understand.

They are the Neanderthals of the human family, railing in anger at man`s progress which is leaving them ever further behind.

There are atrocities and injustices everywhere in the world.
But some are of symbolic value.

The abuse of the prisoners in Abu Ghraib for instance was such a moment. Not because their lives were any more valuable than those of children maimed in Syria, but because their plight became symbolic for all that was wrong with the war in Iraq.
They were thus not mere victims, but symbols.

In that same way the shooting of a group of unarmed men, who simply made a living by drawing and writing has become such a symbol.
These men were not collateral damage in a war. They were not the unintended targets of a greater struggle in Ukraine, Syria or Gaza.
No, they were deliberately sought out and killed.
Because they dared to make people laugh.

Two men, who claimed to believe in Allah being the most powerful force in the entire universe, capable of exploding stars, even galaxies, in the blink of an eye, thought their almighty deity needed protecting from drawings in `Charlie Hebdo`.
Two idiots killed cartoonists for not believing in things the way they did.

Мария    [30554.   Posted 10-Jan-2015 Sat 11:53]
  Did someone ever spit into you mother`s face in front of you? Posted nude pictures of your sister on the internet? Took a shit on your grandfather`s medals? Charlie Hebdo "journalists" did all that professionaly for years. They even got paid. Therefore today I am – Syrian; I am – Odessite burned alive in Trade Unions House; I am – Palestinian boy suffocating beneath ruins of my own house in Gaza; I am – five years old Arseny, torn to pieces by mortar shell launched by Ukrainian army in Slavyansk. Last thing I`ve seen before I went blind – my mother dying to let me live for six more hours; I am – cab driver, mechanic, miner, factory worker from Donetsk protecting my family from Ukrainian neonazis invasion; I am – tortured Guantanamo adbuctee. No lawyer, no trial – my relatives don`t even know I`m still alive; I am – Cuban rotting away in secret CIA prison in a random country. Maybe it is even yours, I do not know; I am – teenager killed by USA cop without warning, because cop "felt threatened"; I am – one of the innocent French policemen killed on 7th of January. But I am NOT your fucking Charlie! Not today, not ever

phantom    [30553.   Posted 9-Jan-2015 Fri 21:40]

What really rattles my cage with the Charlie Hebdo saga from a UK perspective is the staggering level of hypocrisy.
Every politician over here is declaring that he or she is standing `shoulder to shoulder` with Charlie Hebdo.
All of them are saying that the freedom, as symbolised by Charlie Hebdo, is key to our western values and democracy.
But the truth is Charlie Hebdo would be a banned publication here.
Let`s face it, of how many laws would it run foul, with its satirical, attacking style? In comparison Private Eye is rather Charlie`s neutered British cousin.
There would be an orgy of litigations and prosecutions against Charlie Hebdo in this country. Not least for `inciting hatred`.
In a country where police enter shops to tell patrons to remove gollywogs from the display, what chance for Charlie Hebdo?
So to me, it`s extremely annoying to have to listen to these UK political hypocrites on how keen they supposedly are to defend such liberties - for the French!

But I did chuckle when I saw your update on `Stand up for free speech`.
It was when I saw the Charlie front page `Il faut voiler Charlie Hebdo!`. It translates as `Charlie Hebdo should be veiled!`

Does that sound vaguely familiar? Remember various publications being sold in opaque sleeves in supermarkets and newsagents? Remember certain folks demanding the practice be spread?
Strange how unwittingly relevant a French mag can be...

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30552.   Posted 9-Jan-2015 Fri 16:53]

Indeed the world needs to pinch itself and wake up. Today was quite surreal with more or less everyone voicing an opinion on issues to do with Charlie Hebdo being totally fractious, intolerant and somehow expecting or demanding everyone else to think as they do.

And like you say, its not just the big things, but the trivial too.

phantom    [30551.   Posted 9-Jan-2015 Fri 09:35]
  Someone pinch me, please. I want to wake up.

So Gordon Taylor made the `wrong` simile and now needs to apologise for it?
(and has already done so, effectively conceding that the attack on him was correct?)

What can any public figure actually say anymore that will not cause `offence`?
It was self-evident what point Gordon Taylor was trying to make.
The outrage relates to a completely unrelated point.
But it means that the original point can be readily ignored.
At least this seems to be the conclusion.

Whether one actually agrees with Taylor or not is really irrelevant.
What matters is that he`s effectively been silenced (more; forced to apologise, in order to save his neck) after being hit by an outrage avalanche.

It is absolutely clear that no offence regards Hillsboro was intended. It actually takes a great deal of conscious effort to be offended here.
Apparently, what he says implies something. This implication is offensive.

Once again, pinch me, someone. Please.

phantom    [30550.   Posted 7-Jan-2015 Wed 17:40]
  Yes, but will any of the `great statesmen` who have been waxing lyrical about the Paris shooting, have the balls to stand up and hold a speech about that girl`s right to be in porn without being shot?
Nope. I doubt we`ll be hearing from President Hollande on that subject.

Porn somehow is not free speech. Cartoons are. Go figure.

And as for the feminists? Well, they`ll no doubt use one particular line, which they otherwise decry.
`She asked for it.`

Therumbler    [30549.   Posted 7-Jan-2015 Wed 17:08]
  Pornhub star Mia Khalifa receives death threats after being ranked site`s top adult actress

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30548.   Posted 7-Jan-2015 Wed 14:46]
  What`s the betting that David Cameron`s `free speech and democracy` state machinery will lay into the first tweeter who dares make a joke about the murders?

phantom    [30547.   Posted 7-Jan-2015 Wed 12:44]
  I guess today we saw another demonstration of the spirit of the age.
Three Islamist nut jobs stormed into the office of a humorous French magazine and shot twelve people.

Apparently, the great and mighty Allah, creator of the universe and all living things, needed protecting from a French magazine...

Irony, it seems, is not part of the Islamist curriculum.

That said, David Cameron - national censor and imprisoner in chief - immediately sprung into statesman mode during prime minister`s question time.
`...and we stand squarely for free speech and democracy and these people will never be able to take us off those values.`
Clearly, irony didn`t feature much at Eton either.

Harriet Harman, the nation`s foremost demander of the silencing of others, not wanting to be left out, has also pronounced these attacks `a fundamental challenge to western values`.
So it seems the St Paul`s Girl`s School is also not a place where irony is taught.

One struggles really to comprehend on what level Cameron and Harman disagree with the terrorists.
Sure, they appear not to agree with the terrorists` methods of killing people outright.

But according to their statements there ought to be a great chasm in libertarian principle between these two politicos and the terrorists.

However, I just can`t make it out.
Harman with her `western values` wishes to silence those people who are `wrong` just as much as the men in balaclavas do.
And Cameron with his `free speech and democracy` is hardly known as a great champion of civil liberties and free speech. I mean, just mention the human rights act to him and watch the steam coming from his ears.
that`s before we even touch on internet filters, etc.

Both also have no problem with imprisoning people without trial or non-public trials. Both also have voiced no opposition to punishing people for saying the wrong thing, on race, religion or homosexuality.

So yes, the terrorists committed murder. I get it.

But for the pontificating on free speech and western values to hold water, surely our political elite ought to hold some actual difference with the goals of the terrorists?

From where I`m standing, they in fact seem to share the key motivation of those gunmen; namely the desire and inclination to silence those with whom they disagree.

sergio    [30546.   Posted 4-Jan-2015 Sun 09:14]
  Sorry, what was the age of consent again?
So in the UK it seems to be 16, in New York it seems to be 17.

phantom    [30545.   Posted 30-Dec-2014 Tue 07:46]
  sergio {30544}

Well, the author is right insofar that regulation and prohibition by law are two separate things. And yes, all industry tends to be regulated.
That said, there is an overlap between regulation and prohibitive law.
After all, regulation may prohibit things.

What is exceptional here however, is that regulation is not about how many hours it is safe to work, or under what weather conditions certain things are prohibited.

No, the industry regulation he is speaking of here is that of free expression. Is expression still `free` if it is regulated?
This is a question not merely the pornsters are asking. The press have also been posing this question ever since the Leveson inquiry.
(albeit it is worth pointing out that porn has never had its Leveson inquiry)

My appropriate argument would be that which I use with the BBFC. Regulation of free expression is not censorship - as long as it permits free expression.
As we know, the BBFC does not permit free expression.
It still insists on refusing certificates.

The ATVOD regulation is based on BBFC guidelines. This means that material is not merely regulated. True, much of it is regulated, but over all hangs the threat of outright prohibition.

As long as the `regulators` maintain the right to ban, then they are in fact censors. After all, only permitted material is `regulated`.
Were they regulators, then their role would be to regulate all material; not merely that which they permit.

So I tend to disagree with the author. I think we are seeing censorship.

Further, there is the issue of who bears the cost of this `regulation`.
Given that the regulation is not utilitarian in its principles, but entirely faith based, it is somewhat unfair to lay its cost upon those who are non-believers.
The censorship regime is effectively being introduced entirely due to the beliefs in harm, etc by certain groups in society.
But it is not they who are being asked to bear the costs of those beliefs.

The standard reasoning for industry paying for regulatory costs is well accepted. But that is due to an evidence based approach. There is a reason why we have health and safety regulation in nuclear power plants and it seems feasible that it should be the industry which bears the cost of it.
Power plants are dangerous. Nuclear plants represent a potential hazard to the health of the entire nation. Not because we believe it to be so, but because science tells us so.

Porn is now increasingly regulated as though it were radioactive. But so far, all we have is belief.
To demand one group to pay for the beliefs of the other is a steep ask.

But then why shouldn`t the Conservative Party donours pay some of the costs of the Labour Party and vice versa? Perhaps then they might see the error of their ways.

sergio    [30544.   Posted 30-Dec-2014 Tue 02:43]
  `"It is my view that it is not censorship to say, “we don’t want children to see that so here is a set of rules, rules that the adult industry can shape and inform if they wake up to what is happening, to help prevent access to minors.” Censorship to me is to say, “I don’t like topless women with my corn flakes and don’t ever want to educate my children about their and other peoples’ bodies so I want it banned for everyone.”`


I think parents should censor their children. Maybe censoring those less `mature` and vulnerable humans isn`t censorship because they have no power. Anything a parent does to a child is just `child minding`?

But doesn`t everyone self-censor to a certain degree?

phantom    [30543.   Posted 24-Dec-2014 Wed 08:21]

So, what`s to look forward to living in western liberal Britain in 2015.

Look at wrong picture. Result: arrest. (DPA, to be extended to include `rape porn`)
Tell wrong joke. Result: arrest. (communications act)
Have argument with partner. Result: arrest. (new offence of `coercive and controlling behaviour`)
Smoke in your car. Result: a fine. (children and families act)

Do you feel free yet? :)

Rex Borsky    [30542.   Posted 23-Dec-2014 Tue 10:52]
  Man investigated over `offensive` tweet re the Glasgow tragedy.

I thought the parametres around so-called `offence` had been loosened. If the above is true - and it`s not just silly season - then I really do dispair for the U.K.

Either way, the culture of taking offence has already embedded, I mean the guy even handed himself in at the police station for Christ`s sake (whoops, if I offended anybody - go fuck yourself).

braintree    [30541.   Posted 22-Dec-2014 Mon 14:22]
  Apparently the current Nordic releases include the uncut Die Hard 4 too

Melon Farmers (Dave)    [30540.   Posted 21-Dec-2014 Sun 05:20]
  Thanks Braintree

I will pass on the comment

braintree    [30539.   Posted 20-Dec-2014 Sat 14:15]
  The latest edition of Cutting Edge claims there is no Bluray release of the unrated Die Hard 4 . This is incorrect . The Australian boxset of the Die Hard Legacy Collection includes a Bluray disc with both the PG13 and unrated editions with the choice to watch either version from the main menu . This boxset seems to be exclusive to JB Hi-Fi but has been available since 2013 . The uncut Bluray of Die Hard 4 does not appear to be available to buy individually. The packaging is almost identical to the UK boxset but with both Die Hard 4 and 5 the slipcase mentions the harder cuts although the cover on the current listing misses off "harder edition" for Die Hard 5 . I purchased this release a few weeks ago so can confirm its existence. As with most other releases some of the copious bonus features from some of the older 2 disc dvd editions of the films are absent again.

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.

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]
The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014


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).
The Rt Hon William Hague MP

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

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

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?

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]

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]

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:


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.


I presume you are referring to the work described here

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]
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. `


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.

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]

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]

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:
Later `stern, authoritarian` Straw:
And a certain German:

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

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.

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?

Therumbler    [30502.   Posted 26-Nov-2014 Wed 15:57]

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]

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]

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]


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]

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]

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]

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]

"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]

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]

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]

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]

"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]

"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]

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]

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

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]

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]

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]

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]

"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)
Description `Teenage girl with intense stare.`

From a pic from an American -


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.`

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

"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]

"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]

"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

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]

"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]

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]

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]

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]

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]

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.

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.

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

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

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

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.

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:

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.


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]


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]

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 -

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]

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?
Any mention of Julian Assange?

After all, we need protecting...

Therumbler    [30414.   Posted 24-Oct-2014 Fri 15:49]

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]

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.

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".

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]

"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:

"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]

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]

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]

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]

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]

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]

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


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