NRA Goes Full Trump

“From the highest levels of government, to their media, universities and billionaires, their hateful defiance of his legitimacy is an insult to each of us.” Looks like the NRA is going to campaign hard for Trump in 2020…

Freedom-Hating Obesity Charity: Ban Sugar

Tam Fry of the National Obesity Forum is addicted to banning. He wants to ban chocolate bars containing more than 250 calories, because he has decided that is a “quite sufficient snack for anybody“. A typical Mars bar contains 260 calories. Two Twix fingers is 286 calories. A Milky Way has 264 calories. Tam would ban them all. 

The nannying nonsense doesn’t end there. Fry also wants a blanket ban on products with added sugar for hospital inpatients. And the serial banner has come up with a catchy slogan for his crusade: “Sugar is the new tobacco: ban it”. The UK’s leading anti-obesity campaigner calling for sugar to be banned. He’ll have to pry Guido’s 274 calorie Bounty bar from his cold, dead hands…

Requisitioning Property is a Breach of Human Rights

During the election and before Jeremy Corbyn campaigned against the government’s intention to seek a derogation or exit from the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights. He claimed: “The Tories want to repeal the Human Rights Act and some want to leave the European Convention on Human Rights.”

Article 1 of the First Protocol of the Human Rights Act enshrines the protection of property, a right that would be breached by the requisitioning of other people’s properties. The victims of the Grenfell disaster can be accommodated without communist-style expropriations, tearing up the rule of law and breaching innate human rights. It is a sign of Corbyn’s contempt for freedom and property that his knee jerk reaction to the tragedy is to resort class war…

May Attacks Libertarian Right

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Theresa May will use her conference speech this afternoon to attack the many thousands of people in her party who believe in free markets, low taxes and rolling back the state. She names her enemy as the “libertarian right”:

“Government can and should be a force for good; the state exists to provide what individual people, communities and markets cannot; we should employ the power of government for the good of the people. Time to reject the ideological templates provided by the socialist left and the libertarian right and embrace a new centre ground in which government steps up – and not back – to act on behalf of the people.”

Claiming to reject ideology is nonsense – May is advocating an ideology of “centrism”, statist, intervening in the economy, acceptance of perpetual borrowing and over-spending, coupled with greater intrusion by the state into the lives of individuals. Remember her Snoopers’ Charter, giving the state powers to intercept personal online data of every individual. Her conference speech last year, lest we forget, was panned by the Institute of Directors and described as “chilling and bitter”. May, whilst claiming the state is a “force for good”, is proposing to force companies to list foreign workers, an ominous and pointless intervention in the private contracts of business. She will also hint this afternoon at imposing price controls on energy companies, another interventionist policy for which the Tories rightly monstered Ed Miliband. Thatcher wanted to “roll back the frontiers of the state”. May wants “government to step up, not back”. So who do you vote for now if you want a balanced budget, free markets and to get the state out of your life?

Post Plain Packaging Aussie Tobacco Sales Up 0.5%

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Despite claims to the contrary, following the introduction of plain packaging for cigarettes in Australia, tobacco sales increased by 0.5%. Sales were declining  by 5.4% per year in the years before plain packaging was introduced…

The Australian figures will come as an embarrassment for the puritanical British MPs who bulldozed through standardised packaging legislation in March this year. Forbidden fruit tastes the sweetest… 

Dave Kills Mood at Summer Party With Rant About Surveillance

Dave used last night’s champagne fuelled Tory summer ball to go off on one about terrorists and mass surveillance.

Speaking to a 850 strong crowd at a packed Hurlingham Club, Cameron said he was all for Muslims who call out and condemn terror, but argued that he sees it as his mission to tackle any violent ideology.

First in his sights who those that say things like “I don’t condone terror, but a caliphate is a good thing” or that we bring terrorism on ourselves and it’s all our fault because of Iraq and Afghanistan, Israel, or poverty in Muslim countries.

An emotional Cameron got things stirring by declaring that we can’t sit idly by as even if we left them alone they’re not going to leave us alone, they’ll come and destroy us and our way of life using the only methods they know.

Witnesses report he then went on a passionate defence of data gathering – having a dig at those who think the government is overreaching/turning into Big Brother.

The PM’s shaky justification for mass-surveillance was that we have always tapped phones and intercepted letters of organised criminals and the IRA, now that technology has moved on, we need to react.

Iffy: bugging Seamas O’Bomber’s landline is somewhat different from reading everyone’s emails.

It’s safe to say the civil liberties lobby were not out in force at the £450 per head event.

‘Eck-Rated: Salmond’s Mile High Nose Dig

The former First Minister was filmed digging for victory by a fellow passenger on a flight down from Aberdeen. In all he spends over a minute picking, inspecting and picking again:

Readers can make their minds up about whether his finger then went to his mouth:

Living up to his reputation as Westminster’s bogeyman…

Via Dawn Sutherland

Selfie Destruction

jihad selfie

The US Air Force flattened an ISIS command and control center 22 hours after a dopey jihadi moron took a selfie in front of it. The anecdote was revealed by the spectacularly named head of Air Combat Command, Hawk Carlisle who bragged about his “social media to bombs on target in less than 24 hours” capability.

“The guys that were working down out of Hurlburt, they’re combing through social media and they see some moron standing at this command. And in some social media, open forum, bragging about the command and control capabilities for Daesh, ISIL. And these guys go: ‘We got an in.’ So they do some work, long story short, about 22 hours later through that very building, three [Joint Direct Attack Munitions] take that entire building out.”

Say جبن! 

Health Lobbyists Plan to Spy on Gays and Pregnant Women

Gay people and pregnant mothers will be spied on under controversial plans drawn up by health lobby extremists. Guido has seen a copy of a report set to be released later this month by ASH, that draws up plans for a massive clamp down on the rights of the individual in regard to smoking.

The anti-smoking lobby group have written a wide-ranging wishlist for the coming parliament and it’s about as authoritarian as you can get. History would indicate that this bunch get what they want; from the smoking ban, to plain packs and restrictions on smoking in cars.

The document includes plan to spy on gay people in order to stop them smoking:

“Improve national surveillance to ensure that timely and robust data are available on smoking prevalence including data on all socio-economic groups, people with long-term conditions, people with mental health problems, minority ethnic groups, the LGBT population and other disadvantaged groups.”

And the midwives will be armed in this fight:

“Issue every midwife in England who conducts antenatal appointments with a carbon monoxide monitor.”

Because obviously all pregnant women are liars.

Smoking is set to be banned in prisons and on stage, as ASH demand the government “remove the smokefree exemption for prisons” and “theatrical performances.”

And they’re not done there…

The leaked memo includes plans to investigate “legislative and non-legislative options to make outdoor environments smokefree” and “all enclosed cars and motor vehicles.”

So what will the group recommend to make all their dreams come true? Higher taxes, obviously:

“Increase the tax escalator on tobacco products to 5 per cent above the level of inflation.”

You read it here first…

State Removes Child From Smoking Family

Up in Hull:

Well at least they didn’t vote UKIP.

Labour ‘Catastrophic’ On Israel

Sound stuff from Michael Dugher today on Israel, describing Labour’s stance as catastrophic:

“I think that either through neglect or, frankly, in some instances incompetence, we mishandled our relationship with the Jewish community.”

Our attitude to Israel and the Middle East is really important to the Jewish community.”

A thumping 69% of Jewish voters backed Cameron according to polling.

Dugher blames Miliband completely, especially for Labour’s “unnecessary and divisive” position on Palestian statehood, saying it was “straw that broke the camel’s back with many people in the Jewish community. I knew exactly what would happen and I regretted that very profoundly”.

Guido is not sure the Shadow Transport Secretary is going to have much luck with his preferred new leader though…

No Natalie, Capitalism Has Delivered an 80% Decline in World Poverty

As newsrooms across the land stop what they are doing to read the Green Party’s response to Labour’s non-dom announcement, it is worth picking Natalie Bennett up on this:

“The last four decades have seen wealth accumulate at the top of society while those at the bottom struggle to get by.”

Now hold on just a darn prosperity-spreading cotton-picking second. Over the last four decades the world poverty rate – people living on a dollar a day or less – has plummetted. As this graph from CarpeDiem shows, in 1970 almost 30% of the globe was impoverished. 40 years later that number is as low as 5%:

Rather than more of “those at the bottom struggling to get by” over the last four decades, the world poverty rate has fallen 80%. For all the ideological socialist rhetoric, the cold hard facts show that capitalism has freed hundreds of millions from the clutches of poverty.

No Commons Debate Over Plain Packs

Plain packs will be slipped into law next week without so much as a debate in the Commons:

Parliamentary business for Monday 9 March 2015:
General Committee
4.30pm Twelfth Delegated Legislation Committee
Subject: Draft Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Products Regulations 2015
Location: Committee Room 6, Palace of Westminster

“Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled.” – Michael Crichton

MPs Equate Trolls to PaedosCross Party Call For Online Vigilantism

report-abuse

An all-party panel of MPs has called for socially conscious online vigilantes to pro-actively seek out and report offensive social media comments. The group has proposed a prominent (and no doubt expensive) awareness campaign to help “civil society” report Twitter trolls. It comes as part of a package of bonkers proposals that wants horrible people to be banned from the internet in the same way paedophiles are currently under the Sexual Offences Prevention Orders.  The purpose of Sexual Offences Prevention Orders are to protect the “public from serious physical or psychological harm.” While the rise of anti-Semitism online is a worrying trend, there is no doubt that such measures would be abused to stifle legitimate free speech. Get your pitch forks, someone is saying mean words over there…

Javid Joins Plain Packs Cabinet Split Culture Secretary: We Shouldn’t Be “Frightened” of Brexit

Sajid Javid has joined the 80 to 100 Tory MPs considering voting against the government at Jane Ellison’s plain packs free vote. In his House magazine interview today, the Culture Secretary issued a thinly-veiled dig at the health zealots in his party ignoring evidence from Australia that the world’s toughest anti-smoking laws there ain’t working:

“I will be driven by the evidence. I haven’t decided yet which way I’m going to vote. What I’m taking into account already is that there’s a lot that’s already been done. I don’t smoke but people choose to do so, that’s up to them.

I think government has a duty to try and discourage people. We do that through the tax system at the moment, we do that through the recent rules that came in about newsagents putting tobacco products behind their covers. But also from April this year there’s a new EU directive that 65% of the pack has to be a health warning. When I lived in Singapore they already had that rule and they have some pretty gruesome, hard-hitting health warnings.

So these are big changes already taking place. I’m fully aware that Australia has been among the first countries to use the plain packs. I’m not sure if there’s enough evidence yet, given it’s quite recent, about the impact that can have. But I think that whenever one looks at these kind of changes, you need to be driven by the evidence.”

Saj also becomes the second top Tory in 24 hours – after Boris yesterday – to make Eurosceptic noises. On an EU referendum he says “if they [the public] decide to end that relationship then that is not something anyone should be frightened of”. Wonder what they both have in common…

GUY NEWS SPECIAL: Free Amjad Bashir Protest Outside CCHQ

Amjad Bashir has not been seen since he was kidnapped by the Tory party. Amjad’s captors have released a hostage photo of him alongside their leader, but they are not allowing him any contact with the outside world. Protesters outside the captors’ HQ have been threatened by Tory party security. Bring back our Bashir…

Holocaust Memorial Day: Freedom Flypast at Auschwitz

The Israeli Air Force flew three F-15 jets over Auschwitz in 2003 in a show of the Jewish people’s continued strength and triumph over past adversities.

GCHQ Threaten “Ethically Worse” Tactics Over Snapchat Row

banksy

Sir David Omand, a former Director of GCHQ, has told an audience at the LSE that spooks will be forced into “ethically worse” behaviour because of the trend towards end-to-end encrypted communications used by apps such as Snapchat and Whatsapp. Sir David, who in his role as security and intelligence co-ordinator at the Cabinet Office insisted to Tony Blair that Daivd Kelly’s name should be given to the foreign affairs select committee, warned that spies will be forced into “close access work” because they can’t monitor en masse the encoded information sent through mobile messaging services.

Close access work means agents getting physically close to and monitoring suspects. i.e. doing their job.

“One of the results of Snowden is that the companies are heavily encrypting end to end, that’s probably inevitable, it would probably have come anyway. But Snowden has accelerated it. The result is that the intelligence agencies and the police are not going give up trying to get the bad guys, they’ve just got to get closer to the bad guys. So what we’re actually going to see I predict is more close access work. Now you can say that’s more targeted so that fits your way of thinking, but in terms of intrusion into personal privacy, collateral intrusion into privacy; we’re actually likely to end up in ethically worse positions than we were before.”

Techno Guido is confused why specifically targeting the bad guys is “ethically bad”…

H/T TBIJ

The King is Dead, Long Live the Regime – David Cameron

David Cameron is in full on gush mode:

“I am deeply saddened to hear of the death of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, His Majesty King Abdullah bin Abd Al Aziz Al Saud. He will be remembered for his long years of service to the Kingdom, for his commitment to peace and for strengthening understanding between faiths. My thoughts and prayers are with the Saudi Royal Family and the people of the Kingdom at this sad time. I sincerely hope that the long and deep ties between our two Kingdoms will continue and that we can continue to work together to strengthen peace and prosperity in the world.”

So anyway, here are the Saudis cutting off a woman’s head in the street last week:

Meanwhile Saudi blogger Raif Badawi faces another 950 lashes as soon as his initial 50 have healed enough.

Scumbags.

Where You Can Buy a Copy of Charlie Hebdo This Morning

mo

The English edition of the new Charlie Hebdo hits the shelves this morning. Here are the places where you might be able to pick up a copy, if you get there before it sells out.

The French Bookshop – 28 Bute Street, South Kensington

JL News kiosk – Golders Green, next to the tube station

Good News – 23 Berwick Street, Soho

Forge Newsagents – 2 Church St, Cheltenham

St Pancreas Eurostar Terminal – If you can’t find it at the station, it’s only two and a half hours to Paris

Only 2000 copies are coming to the UK,  you better be quick…

H/T Business Insider
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