Friday, June 26, 2020

Free Speech

I'm worried about the effects of the "I'M OFFENDED!" tactic on free speech.

The latest example was yesterday when Sir Kier Starmer, the new leader of the Labour Party, sacked the left winger Rebecca Long-Bailey for the heinous crime of approving an interview which contained an 'antisemitic' (i.e anti-Israel) remark.

Brendan O'Neil puts it much better than me in an article in today's Spiked:

The sacking of RLB by Labour leader Keir Starmer is wrong. It is a shrill overreaction to the mere sharing of an article. RLB’s tweetcrime was to praise the actress Maxine Peake and to share an interview with Peake that was published in the Independent today.

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Thursday, June 25, 2020

Cancelled Summer

So normally this is my favourite time of the year - the long Glastonbury weekend followed by the two glorious weeks of the Wimbledon tennis tournament.

Not this year. 

Quite rightly, a couple of months ago both events were cancelled, Instead, me and "M" are watching classic headliners from past festivals. The BBC are brilliant at this sort of thing, and are promising much the same during the Wimbledon fortnight - a choice of classic tennis matches.

This morning Emily Eavis, the main Glastonbury organiser now that her Dad is getting on, tried her best to put a positive spin on the cancellation. It's full speed ahead for next years's event she explained as this year would have been the 50th anniversary of the event.

Wimbledon is much the same - focusing on 2021. 

Ironically we've had a lovely Spring this year and another prolonged hot spell of weather breaks up tomorrow after today was the hottest day of the year so far; 31C in London.

This is the strangest year I've lived through - it's hard to escape the feeling that the whole thing should be written off and everyone reconvenes on the 1st January next year. 

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Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Out of the Woods?

The government eased many of the restrictions on June 1st, which was a Monday.

After 11 weeks, M went back to work (she's self employed and had suspended her business during the lockdown). Personally, I think we're heading back a bit too early, but people are suffering and after the Dominic Cummings affair, it was going to be hard to persist with the lock down anyway. 

Last Thursday was the last night of 'The Clap' as people so wittily refer to it. It was good to stand outside the front door and applaud the front line workers until my hands hurt. We're looking now hopefully at a gentle return to normal. But it's going to be tough for pubs, clubs, cinemas, restaurants and theatres. I do hope the majority of them survive.

The source for the graph was the ever brilliant Wikipedia

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