The Plastic Hippo

June 28, 2014

Journalism is not a crime

Filed under: History,Law,Media,Politics — theplastichippo @ 4:33 am
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Three of these people are innocent

Three of these people are innocent

The scandalous detention and outrageous conviction of three Al Jazeera journalists in Egypt is an affront not just to freedom of speech, but is also confirmation that corrupt governments will stop at nothing in attempting to control an independent media or, possibly, the other way round.

More enlightened democratic governments have been quick to whisper their disapproval at journalists being held in cages without any evidence of wrongdoing and have summoned Egyptian ambassadors for a telling off and a preview of the latest lethal weaponry available at a discount for a bulk order. The free press were equally quick to condemn the incarceration of the three Al Jazeera journalists on cooked up charges of “spreading untrue stories”. The BBC`s Director of News, James Harding, told the BBC that; (more…)

June 22, 2014

Waiting for an Alibhai

Filed under: Media,Politics,Walsall — theplastichippo @ 4:29 am
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Fabrication

Fabrication

The idea that Michael Fabricant would actually punch Yasmin Alibhai-Brown in the throat is as fanciful as the likelihood of the member for Lichfield being capable of aiming a punch without missing. In a fist fight there would be only one winner and Mr Fabricant should spar with a paper bag before attempting to take on Ms Alibhai-Brown.

Men like Rod Liddle, Fabricant and the disturbingly odd James Delingpole have every right to be annoyed with Yasmin Alibhai-Brown. (more…)

June 18, 2014

My enemy`s enemy

Filed under: History,Media,Politics,World — theplastichippo @ 4:01 am
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Via johnpilger.com

Via johnpilger.com

Diplomacy, according to Winston Churchill, is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way that they ask for directions. Theodore Roosevelt was more pragmatic and suggested that “if you`ve got them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow”. Tony Blair, however, suggests that we should carry a great big stick and shout very, very loudly.

Former Prime Ministers usually do the decent thing by disappearing off into their dotage leaving memories of bygone days and are only occasionally wheeled out in public like some creepy uncle at a family funeral or wedding to make everybody else feel uncomfortable. Not so with former Prime Minister Tony Blair. (more…)

June 14, 2014

Wake up and smell the coffee

The full English

The full English

Enjoying a breakfast consisting of a croissant and a cup of strong Turkish coffee, a person from Scotland informed me of the news of the day via a radio manufactured in Taiwan. With an elbow resting on the Swedish worktop, I poured another cup of Yemen`s finest from the stainless steel Spanish percolator and considered the question being asked on the radio. British values, it seems, are to be promoted in British schools and the questioner was asking what defines British values.

Responding to a non-existent plot to indoctrinate children into the ways of terrorism, Michael Gove now insists that British values will be actively promoted in schools. He helpfully added that British values include respect and tolerance and liberty and without any sense of shame or irony, the PM chimed in with talk of responsibility. The mouthful of coffee ended up all over the Chinese wok. (more…)

June 10, 2014

The Jumblies

Illustration by L. Leslie Brooke 1871

Illustration by L. Leslie Brooke 1871

The notion of rote learning as espoused by Michael Gove suggests that if you memorise and recite something often enough, then dull repetition will be miraculously converted into knowledge. With sincerest apologies, I will repeat that Michael Gove should face arrest and charges of criminal damage and appear before a court of law with the power to impose a custodial sentence. This man and his apparatchiks are extremely dangerous. (more…)

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