in the Commons for the first time since his election in 1997. MPs refused to pass laws allowing terrorist suspects to be jailed without trial for 90 days, and Blair's parliamentary majority of 66 turned into a minority of 31. The government has been holding back on the vote for months in an attempt to persuade their party to back the Prime Minister - they failed.
posted by Pretty_Generic
on Nov 9, 2005 -
Feed Me Better
Jamie Oliver (UK fat tongued food wizard) campaigns to ban the junk food and get fresh, tasty and, above all, nutricious food back on school dinners menu.
posted by Spoon
on Mar 17, 2005 -
Britain - Stamping Out Terrorism. One Peaceful Protestor At A Time.
"The Home Office proposes "to make it an offence to protest outside homes in such a way that causes harassment, alarm or distress to residents" [PDF
] This sounds reasonable enough, until you realise that the police can define "harassment, alarm or distress" however they wish. All protest in residential areas, in other words, could now be treated as a criminal offence. The government will also seek to "suggest remedies" for websites which "include material deemed to cause concern or needless anxiety to others"."
posted by Blue Stone
on Aug 3, 2004 -
Met by "howls of outrage" and questions about his sanity, Michael Meacher
, the ex-Environment Minister for the UK, known mostly for his opposition to GMOs, and revelations about the less than honest and upright behaviour surrounding the issue, has spent some time thinking, free from the constraints of Ministerial duties.
"the PNAC blueprint of September 2000 states that the process of transforming the US into "tomorrow's dominant force" is likely to be a long one in the absence of "some catastrophic and catalyzing event - like a new Pearl Harbor". The 9/11 attacks allowed the US to press the "go" button for a strategy in accordance with the PNAC agenda which it would otherwise have been politically impossible to implement.
- Commentary - Commentary - Commentary
posted by Blue Stone
on Sep 6, 2003 -
Diego Garcia islanders await call to go home.
'Cherry and thousands of other islanders were the victims of a brutal depopulation strategy by Britain in the 1960s and 1970s which sought to hand over an empty island to the United States for use as a key military base. The depopulation campaign ended in 1973 with the removal of the last islanders, who were dumped on the quays of the Mauritian capital, Port Louis ... 'The Chagos Islands: A sordid tale.
'The story involves "bribes" from the United States, racism among senior civil servants, and the UK Government deceiving parliament and the United Nations.'The Chagos archipelago: Decolonisation and human rights.
, by the Southern African Human Rights NGO Network, includes a brief history of the islands from original settlement by French settlers and African slaves. 'For a people as a whole to be actually victimised by the act of forced eviction from their homeland must be the most humiliating, supreme injustice and degrading treatment any people can be made to undergo. '
posted by plep
on Jul 29, 2003 -
How to kill terrorists without anyone knowing.
into collusion between the British army and both loyalist and republican paramilitaries in Northern Ireland has revealed that undercover agents may have been responsible for several assassinations, including lawyer Pat Finucane. By creating army units immune from the usual checks and balances, the government kept its hands clean. This is an account from someone who was involved.
posted by Summer
on Apr 16, 2003 -
Blair, the war criminal
Tom Dalyell, a Labour MP with over 41 years of service in the House of Commons has voted with his Labour Party constitutency to call for Blair to reconsider his postion as party leader. He further states that he believes "[Blair] should be branded as a war criminal and sent to the Hague".
posted by lometogo
on Mar 27, 2003 -
Will this comedy ever cross the atlantic?
The Office, now half way through its second series, must be the sharpest, funniest and most tragic t.v. comedy the BBC have made in a long time. A spoof documentary set in the office of a paper wholesaler whose manager, David Brent, is obsessed with his motivational bon homie and oblivious to the fact the rest of the world thinks he is a bumptious idiot.
The clips give some idea of the style but maybe the humour is too British to travel far.
posted by rolo
on Oct 20, 2002 -
Cooking the Books
The Office of National Statistics feels that the UK population is a little too small - so they're inventing one million people to fill the gap. Why did they do a census if they were going to make it all up?
posted by tabbycat
on Sep 23, 2002 -
The first world, or west
or any other generic term, is not the cosy alliance it once was according to this author. There is a growing schism which is becoming wider, is this a problem. Whilst on a lighter note the house of Sauds' representative
here in the UK maintains a war on iraq is madness, seems everything is just super.
posted by johnnyboy
on Sep 9, 2002 -
Big Brother is here!
Close to a thousand Brirish schools have collected their student`s fingerprints via library scanners; all this without the consent or knowledge of the parents. Please commend my success in refraining from oversentionalizing the story. YES!
posted by ( .)(. )
on Jul 23, 2002 -
Speaking frankly about drugs,
the Economist all but concludes the war against some drugs' success a failure in the UK, saying that: "These figures
confirm that the increasing resources employed to disrupt the illegal drugs trade are having little impact." Considering the present path
is not working and broad swaths
of the public (from across the political spectrum!—excepting the tobacco, alcohol, cotton and drug dealer lobby of course :) aren't against decriminalization, then why can't I have my Bay Golds?
Besides, the pharmaceutical industry has a stellar record of raising prices :)
Who knows, they may want in!
posted by kliuless
on Jun 11, 2002 -
Another trip into TV Hell.
In the UK we're much kinder to bad television -- shows will go on for weeks without an audience and often get comissioned for second series before someone releases they're awful (yes you 'Let Them Eat Cake' -- if that French and Saunder monstrosity had been on UStv it would have been cancelled after two episodes -- if it had been comissioned at all). 'Off The Telly' considers all the things prospective television producers need to avoid if they're going to create something they're proud of. Does anyone else have any bad examples?
posted by feelinglistless
on Apr 4, 2002 -
Science and technology in the developing world.
SciDev.net went online last month, with the backing of the UK Department for International Development. Its main goal "is to enhance the ability of all its users to engage in informed debate on ways of applying science and technology to social and economic development in an environmentally responsible way." Hopefully, a useful tool for globalisation discussions.
posted by liam
on Feb 1, 2002 -
Planes over London will be shot down, warns government.
The UK government warned that any plane venturing into airspace over central London was likely to be shot down. All aircraft movements over the heart of the capital are banned until further notice. The flight path into London-Heathrow airport passes close to the Canary Wharf skyscraper in the east of the city and along the River Thames over the House of Parliament, the Guardian newspaper reports. (Down the page a ways.)
posted by krisjohn
on Sep 12, 2001 -
England vs. USA
Over the death penalty. Initially I felt like saying "butt out" but America tends to get involved in other countries when our citizens are in trouble (like that kid in Singapore way back).
posted by owillis
on Sep 10, 2001 -
I live in Bradford.
This summer we had a series of riots
which tarnished the image of a city which, whilst I might love the place, didn't exactly have a sparkling reputation in the first place. A major reason cited
for the riots was the devisiveness in the local community of schools that cater only to one community, typically of course the community in which any given school happens to reside.
The UK government today announced that it would be basing the future of British schools
on the successes of the Bradford model. The future is single faith schools.
When I was 13 and choosing which lessons I was to take from that point up until I was 16 I made all the wrong choices, had others imposed upon me, and screwed up pretty badly ending up leaving at 15 with no qualifications at all (this is why I write '15' instead of 'fifteen' BTW). The future is also, apparantly, specialisation.
posted by vbfg
on Sep 5, 2001 -
Six-year-old kid goes to school, gets beaned with rocks. Class bullies? No. Protestants
. Doesn't it seem like there are some places in the world (Middle East, Eritrea/Ethiopia, Balkans, etc.) where people just insist on hating and killing each other until everyone's dead? Or is it just that the various media paint it that way?
posted by Bixby23
on Sep 4, 2001 -
More NMD to make you nervous.
If you're in an area about to be vapourised then you are safe. If you live anywhere else you are not. I live about half a blast radius away from one of the radar stations
in the UK (it doesn't look like that picture anymore - some of the golfballs are now pyramids). From direct assault I maybe won't be hit but the bombs falling out of the sky on their way from Iraq to New York are pretty much going to land on my head. Cool.
posted by vbfg
on Sep 3, 2001 -
Labour Party WINS UK General Election
Tony Blair's Labour Party now officially wins the general election after getting the needed 330 constituencies. Not all the results are in yet, but it's not important. Labour are past the post. Well done Tony!
posted by wackybrit
on Jun 7, 2001 -