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Assonate Tony Blair Opinion Poll…

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posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 09:24 AM
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I do not condone anyone wishing to assonate Tony Blair (not least because that would be illegal). But solely as a “what if” scenario what do think your own emotional reaction might be if someone assonated Tony Blair?

1. Happy?
2. Unhappy?
3. More happy than unhappy?
4. More unhappy than happy?
5. None of the above

I personally would register (emotionally) "happy". To me it would mean…
1. That you can’t lie to the British people about why we went to war in Iraq and get away with it
2 .It would mean that you can’t ban all unregistered peaceful protests in parliament square and get away with it
3. It would mean you can’t weaken British democracy, or undermine our informal constitution e.g. by denying anyone the right to trial by jury, or not to be triad for the same crime more than once.
4. It would mean you can’t get away with pioneering denying me the right to leave my country with a passport just because I won’t get hold of an I.D card.

5. It would mean so many things and set an eerie example to any successor who undermines our birth rights any further.

That said killing people (even Iraqis) is wrong; therefore I cannot say I condone it and would not anyway especially as it would be illegal to do so. But my honest emotional reaction to this hypothetical event would be “happy”. Anyone else feel the same way, or differently?

Disclaimer…
This opinion poll-discussion is intended solely for peaceful public information purposes only and anyone who uses it to towards other purposes should not forget it is both criminal and wrong to violate any lawful laws of the British state, or indeed any of those of the international community and other lawful laws of sovereign nations. Anybody who uses this poll-discussion to violate in anyway any law anywhere does it at their own will, and through their actions and but none of my own.




posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 09:29 AM
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i think the word youre grasping for here is assassinate and it probably isnt appropriate to discuss something like this, even in a hypothetical sense.



posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 10:33 AM
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When there were 3 millions+ unemployed under Thatcher and similar numbers under Major and people were losing their homes with repossessions running at record rates some people used to spout similar day-dreams and claim they'd be 'happy' if those PM's died/were killed/murdered.

At least then it was for and about issues which made life hard for them and their families in a day to day sense and which went on for years.

You on the other hand appear to want to work yourself into a lather over a bunch of mainly theoretical possibilities and scenarios which are either not yet defined or have not happened or are just being interpreted by you in a very particular (peculiar?) way.

......and then there is the Iraqi war.
You don't agree with the UK having been a part of it.
Fine.
Your opinion and one you're entitled to (and here's hoping no one starts desiring your death for it, eh?).

I don't think you'll find much support for this idea.....

......and I'll be interested in the response the US version of this thread will get about Britain's senior/major partner in the invasion and attack - the USA and Bush - when you troll out this one on the US boards, eh?

.....cos you will just to be consistent and honest about this, eh?

I can just hear the FBI & Special Branch files being opened now.



posted on Jul, 1 2006 @ 11:25 AM
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I would hope that anyone with half a brain in a civilised country would be appalled at the assassination of ANY legitimate leader of a democracy.

We can all have out strongly held opinions, but I think people who want the violent removal of our leaders should be treated with the utmost contempt as they clearly do not deserve to be in the company of decent folk.

Regards



posted on Jul, 1 2006 @ 11:32 AM
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Originally posted by paraphi
I would hope that anyone with half a brain in a civilised country would be appalled at the assassination of ANY legitimate leader of a democracy.



I would tend to agree, but when that Leader gained power by being 'of the people and for the people' then once in power revealed a virtual contempt for any aspect of democracy which interfered with his perceived omnipotence, personally going out of his way to disassemble certain of the cogs and wheels that provide freedom and civil liberty for all....it's understandable that some may wish him dead.



posted on Jul, 1 2006 @ 02:30 PM
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I don't agree. In a democracy if the voter does not like what they see then they vote for change. I think those who wish the leader of a democracy is assassinated are below contempt and should toddle off and rethink what it means to live in a democracy. If you want assassinations then you should take a one-way trip to some pox ridden dictatorship where they really do have a contempt for life.

Regards

[edit on 1/7/2006 by paraphi]

[edit on 1/7/2006 by paraphi]



posted on Jul, 2 2006 @ 03:24 PM
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I dislike Tony Blair alot, but I would not wish death on him. He believes what he's doing is right, even though to some of us, it may seem very wrong. Let's put it this way, I'd rather not have David Cameron as the plonk in charge. I'd rather not have Menzies in charge either, as he is very old and of no use. Therefore, Tony is the lesser of two evils.



posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 12:33 AM
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A Hell of alot of the Public (in the UK) do not like Tony Blair, But we certainly do not want him Assasinated... Tried in a UK Court of Law for lying about the Iraq War maybe yes, but not killed..better still send him to The US they like him more than we do....


[edit on 3-7-2006 by spencerjohnstone]



posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 12:40 AM
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Even if he were removed from office, another jerk would be put in his place. They have as many as they need for the various positions and then some.



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 08:31 PM
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Originally posted by paraphi

I don't agree. In a democracy if the voter does not like what they see then they vote for change.


1. One Question: Can we really vote for change and get it even if the majority of people want it? For example all living Tory Party leaders supported the war in Iraq; whilst both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown supported the war in Iraq. Choice?

2. Also some people like me live in a constituency that has been with one party or the other almost forever. For example mine has been a Tory seat since the 1920's. This is due to the people in my area being of a particular social makeup; all very well but I’m not. So for people like me we don't really live in a democracy until the day we move address into the right constituency, and fat chance of that!!

However this in itself is all tolerable (just).

3. What gets me is that every MP and every leader is selected by people who are not the public for the public to select. Usually (on MP level) this is just the party membership who in my personal experience tend to be slightly corrupt. But that's still ok.

4. What isn't is that whoever the Con Lab Lib parties put forward always has their fate determined by the media. That's ok but what isn't is that this same media is owned by very few people; Rupert Murdoch for example own the Times, Sun, News of the World, Sky News, Fox news, and over 200 sky channels. In fact out of the 172 news titles his company owned at the time of the Iraq war all 172 supported it (he now owns 175 titles). In fact I was reading Blair won't even change his European policy without consulting this guy, and Murdoch visited Downing street 3 times this march, and Blair won't disclose what was said. To see a revealing (but highly incomplete list) of Murdoch’s holdings look here: www.ketupa.net...

5. Another thing is that whilst any MP can propose a bill in the houses of parliament it can always be talked out unless the party of the day gives it more parliamentary time (all governments that win power control parliamentary time in our system). That's ok; but maybe only if everything else I’ve written above isn't?

P.S Escrotumus thanks for the spelling hint; I'm sure you’ll make an excellent teacher and I'm sorry for still being a bit dyslexic. Unfortunately I couldn’t give toss what you think is (or isn’t) appropriate to discuss; but then I guess your free to say so; just as you’re also free to discuss something or not.

Look at those 5 problems; everyone is an individual, not one is part of the public voting system; and as far as I can make none our necessary to the public good. Still think we are a functional enough to democracy to really choose our leader? Or is it only theory? A bit like rocket science perhaps? Is to me, but perhaps not you, right?



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 10:28 AM
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Lib whatever the flaws you think you see in 'our system' and however imperfect it may be (and undoubtedly it isn't perfection, what could ever be?) the fact remains that all political 'systems' have their draw-backs.

As Churchill once said democracy is the worst form of government......except for all the others.

Murder on it's own is bad enough but I can't think of a more loathsome replacement for our 'political system' than this suggested repellent version of 'politics' which, unable to win at the ballot box, would then attempt the attack and murder our own democratically elected and lawful politicians just because of a profound disagreement over their elected manifesto/politics.

If you really think that is the kind of 'thinking' that would appeal to any but the most infantile 'thinkers' then I reckon you are way out there on your own and in need of a severe reality check and/or extensive therapy.



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 12:24 PM
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Oh I totally agree that "democracy is the worst form of government except from all other forms of government".
But what I'm questioning (as you should be able to see how) from my last post is how much of a democracy we really are?

1. Think about it why is ownership of the media by a very few people not broken up by law? At the very least why are media barons able to boss around their editors for political reasons?
The media is like the soil for any democracy; and ours seems very poor indeed.

2. Is there a connection between mass media ownership and every Tory leader supporting the Iraq war? (As well as the only two real candidate for Labour leadership).

3. The System…
Why do we need constituencies? Given that so many people’s votes are counted but don’t count because of that wouldn’t it be better to vote for the parties directly? Are our local representatives (MP’S) really representing the local peoples interests; or isn’t it a fact that more of them use them to become virtual lords by taking comfort from a strong social fabric of a certain place?
More radically should we even be using our current voting system? Do we not deserve at least a referendum on the issue given that other countries reflect the opinion polls with government seats far better than ours? And is it really right that Labour can form a government with Scottish MP’s only to use them to vote for issues that don’t effect them?
And is there room for more power for local government? E.g. Should local people be able to save say a primary school in debt with more of their own tax money, say when local government refuses (as the system originally intended-allowed). For example our college was only one million pounds in debt; and that caused the laying of many staff; but a one of increase of ten pounds on council tax would have sorted that.

4. Why is it beneficial that an MP can propose a bill; but have it talked out without adequate parliamentary time? Wouldn’t it better that as well as the right to have it discussed they could also have the time to call a parliamentary vote?

5. Should we have a referendum every time we go to war? Perhaps we could extend it to other big decisions like tax rising?

6. Should the public be allowed to peacefully protest within one kilometre of parliament or downing street? And should I be able to have a passport without an I.D card?

None Democracy Note
7. Should politicians be able to sell of the assets accumulated by others? Or should they instead form part of a national reserve; where all money raised by asset selling can only in?

Aside from the last note I think you can see what I mean. It’s because I think democracy is failing (first and foremost due to biased mass media ownership) that whilst not supporting a Tony Blair assassination I would register emotionally happy if there was one. I agree democracy is the best system, and I don’t agree with any violence within one. But I think there’s more to democracy than voting; it’s having a system which reflects the peoples votes and perhaps also their will as best as it can. Perhaps its also having a media that doesn’t contaminate the minds of others (at east not without there been greater political competition within it) (along perhaps with some of the other things I mentioned). Till these things are addressed I stick with my opening statement; and ask you to consider joining this opinion or at least not reject me without explaining to yourself how and why? P.S I would like to know too.



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 12:34 PM
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Assonate Tony Blair


Tony Blair is the man with no care
and he does not dare to wake a sleeping bear

Reader beware of this scare
if you don't like him
get him voted out of there
that guy...Tony Blair


2nd attempt:

Tony, Tony, Tony!
That guy is a phony
He keeps feeding the British
a bunch of baloney.


Now that Blair has been assonated do you feel:


1. Happy?
2. Unhappy?
3. More happy than unhappy?
4. More unhappy than happy?
5. None of the above


[edit on 5-7-2006 by dbates]



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 02:35 PM
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Originally posted by Liberal1984
1. One Question: Can we really vote for change and get it even if the majority of people want it? For example all living Tory Party leaders supported the war in Iraq; whilst both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown supported the war in Iraq. Choice?

Well, that's life. You are personalising poliics, because it id the MPs who vote. Choice is what democracy is and your Parliamentary reps voted and they were able to vote because they were put in power by the electorate. Thta's what happens.


Originally posted by Liberal1984
2. Also some people like me live in a constituency that has been with one party or the other almost forever. For example mine has been a Tory seat since the 1920's. This is due to the people in my area being of a particular social makeup; all very well but I’m not. So for people like me we don't really live in a democracy until the day we move address into the right constituency, and fat chance of that!!

Well, again that's life. If the majority of the population are motivated to go for a particular colour then ho hum. Things do change and there is evidence that the electorate can be quite motivated to over-turn traditional majorities, they just need a reason.


Originally posted by Liberal1984
3. What gets me is that every MP and every leader is selected by people who are not the public for the public to select. Usually (on MP level) this is just the party membership who in my personal experience tend to be slightly corrupt. But that's still ok.

But that is life. Politcians do it because that is what they aspire to do it and if they are selected by the "party faithful" then hey ho.


Originally posted by Liberal1984
4. What isn't is that whoever the Con Lab Lib parties put forward always has their fate determined by the media. That's ok but what isn't is that this same media is owned by very few people; Rupert Murdoch for example own the Times, Sun, News of the World, Sky News, Fox news, and over 200 sky channels. In fact out of the 172 news titles his company owned at the time of the Iraq war all 172 supported it (he now owns 175 titles). In fact I was reading Blair won't even change his European policy without consulting this guy, and Murdoch visited Downing street 3 times this march, and Blair won't disclose what was said. To see a revealing (but highly incomplete list) of Murdoch’s holdings look here: www.ketupa.net...

Well, that's the power of the press! However, I often think that blaming the press is a bit insulting to the general public who I think know the game. My Dad reads the Torygraph and knows full well the agenda.


Originally posted by Liberal1984
5. Another thing is that whilst any MP can propose a bill in the houses of parliament it can always be talked out unless the party of the day gives it more parliamentary time (all governments that win power control parliamentary time in our system). That's ok; but maybe only if everything else I’ve written above isn't?

That's politics for you. Some of the Private Member's Bills are just silly!


Originally posted by Liberal1984
Look at those 5 problems; everyone is an individual, not one is part of the public voting system; and as far as I can make none our necessary to the public good. Still think we are a functional enough to democracy to really choose our leader? Or is it only theory? A bit like rocket science perhaps? Is to me, but perhaps not you, right?

That's right, you have NO choice in the Prime Minister. Long may it continue to be so.

Now, the "problems" you are issues with all democracies, not just confined to the UK or US.

Also, these are no reasons to relish the assassination of a democratic leader. I find that sentiment f'ing abhorrent.

Regards



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 03:12 PM
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Originally posted by Liberal1984
1. Think about it why is ownership of the media by a very few people not broken up by law?


- The 'media' (in all it's forms) is enormously diverse here in our society, despite the 'empires' of certain 'media moguls' in the 'traditional' media areas.


At the very least why are media barons able to boss around their editors for political reasons?


- ....because we don't have the nightmare of a system of state 'micro-control' which would attempt to force those private businesses to act in a manner the state approves of (today...... but capricious things that they are, might not tomorrow)?


The media is like the soil for any democracy; and ours seems very poor indeed.


- I would agree that parts of our media are indeed poor at informing the public but then again I don't go along with the idea of a passive public only soaking up the tale Murdock & Co. prefer to tell.

Murdock, the Sun etc etc will all tell anyone who'll listen all about how vital their 'endorsement' is......& maybe on the very margins it has a tiny effect.

But the Labour example is interesting - if you know anything about the Labour party.
The LP will take any of the media's supposed 'endorsement', it's free so why not?
But anyone who imagines The Sun is a Labour supporting paper is kidding themselves, they simply claimed to have joined onto what was already so obviously the winning side; something that was quite obvious to anyone with a tiny grain of political 'nous'.

The Sun etc have never run a sustained campaign of support for this Labour government or its policies in the manner that they supported Thatcher & Co. from day 1 until even after she was ejected from office, their every instinct remains as right-wing as ever.

They simply couldn't & wouldn't publicly side on election day with the clear & obvious losers......so who cares what those opportunist fair-weather friends have to say anyway?
I honestly don't know a single member of the Labour party who was ever convinced Murdocks 'support' was substantive or in any way genuine.....or that much help to Labour either.

There were several newspapers launched in the 1980's/90's some failed & others not.
But newspapers are not the entire UK media, far from it (and as the internet grows such 'old media' may have less & less general relevance anyway).

So long as there is real variety of view available and freedom for new titles to enter the market then I don't think there is too much to worry about.


2. Is there a connection between mass media ownership and every Tory leader supporting the Iraq war? (As well as the only two real candidate for Labour leadership).


- Yes, probably.
Maybe they all believed it was, despite all the problems and questions, the right thing to do given the information available at the time.
(much of which, we are told by the Foreign affairs select committee enquiry into the intel, was coming from US sources which 'we' didn't know then were US sources)


3. The System…
Why do we need constituencies?


- Well it's pretty obvious isn't it? People tend to like the local link. They have an obvious liking for 'one of their own' representing them.
That's why 'parachuting in' people from outside of the constituency is usually not the greatest tactic.


More radically should we even be using our current voting system?


- Well one can rerun the PR debate over and over.
Personally I prefer a system of 'single transferable vote' with a mainly constituency based candidature topped up with a list.

The problem is that there isn't exactly a lot of call for it at the moment.

There are also benefits to our existing 'FPTP' system that some prefer - a relatively swift, clear and definite outcome being prime.

Being the democrat that I am I have to accept that & either campaign for change or put up with it.


Do we not deserve at least a referendum on the issue given that other countries reflect the opinion polls with government seats far better than ours?


- You're kidding yourself if you think the public's No.1 priority is a change to the electoral system.
Besides, the elections, polls and the various outcomes/results shift all the time.
Some of our general elections have ended up with the popular vote reflected better than others.

.....but if your thoughts are that a different system would automatically mean a different result then think again.
People have a canny habit of understanding & working a system to get the result they want, in other words the low turnout experienced previously could well become a high turnout as people realise staying at home could get them an outcome they don't want under a new system.

Also gov by more frequent referendum? I'm far from convinced on that 1.


And is it really right that Labour can form a government with Scottish MP’s only to use them to vote for issues that don’t effect them?


- It's the 'UK', that's how it works & has for a long time (& such political stability is not to be sneered at or taken for granted).

The tory party didn't have any problems with this in the 1980's & 90's when they were wiped out in Scot & Wales and enacted law particular to Scotland or Wales or Northern Ireland with only English MPs and chose English MPs as Sec of States.

It's not ideal but it isn't the huge 'problem' some would opportunistically try to claim.

(BTW this Lab gov still has a very handy majority without the Scot and Welsh MPs included....cos they're not all Labour anyway)


And is there room for more power for local government?


- It's the usual story; every claims to love local government until the bills roll in or they start trying to raise local taxes.


4. Why is it beneficial that an MP can propose a bill; but have it talked out without adequate parliamentary time?


- Arcane as our system sometimes seems giving matters such a hearing can alert Gov. to a particular need that may be dealt with on a better basis later than a narrow members bill might do.

They don't always get ignored, go nowhere or fail either you know.


5. Should we have a referendum every time we go to war?


- .....& what if we ended up not going to war when we should have done?
What if we had preferred to duck WW1 or 2?
The right thing to do isn't always a matter of popularity.


Perhaps we could extend it to other big decisions like tax rising?


- We make that kind of choice every election time.

We have the
'we're not really saying at the moment but you know us, we'll cut taxes mostly for the well off, aren't particularly concerned about the idea of 'public services' and we'll endow business and the already well off even further', party;
we also have the
'we'll spend on public services but not loads and help the less well off so long as they work or train and maybe give a little something for you guys in the middle once in a while and continue to endow business but very mildly squeeze the already well off a little', party
and lastly there is the
'we're not sure on the specifics but basically it's the nice bits of whatever those two said', party.



6. Should the public be allowed to peacefully protest within one kilometre of parliament or downing street?


- Sorry but I don't think my entire human rights rest on being able to protest close to Westminster Palace.


And should I be able to have a passport without an I.D card?


- We'll see on that one in the manifestos for the next general election.
My guess is no, you won't be able to and that all the parties will be prepared to give ID cards a serious try.


7. Should politicians be able to sell of the assets accumulated by others? Or should they instead form part of a national reserve; where all money raised by asset selling can only in?


- ?
Do you mean is it right that the state has a fiscal system where the government can choose to either nationalise or denationalise?

How do you propose to bind future governments & how could that be right?


It’s because I think democracy is failing (first and foremost due to biased mass media ownership) that whilst not supporting a Tony Blair assassination I would register emotionally happy if there was one.


- I don't agree with this premise.
On what basis do you imagine "democracy is failing"?

There's a distinct lack of public protest about it if it really is.


I agree democracy is the best system, and I don’t agree with any violence within one.


- That's better, glad to hear it.


But I think there’s more to democracy than voting; it’s having a system which reflects the peoples votes and perhaps also their will as best as it can.


- But the vote is an expression of choice & therefore will.

A free society is one where one can choose to be as involved or not as one likes.
I like living in a state where life or quality of life is not dependant on being seen to engage with or support a political process/system if I don't want to.
That's a liberty many do not have & one which I value, despite any minor problems re participation that may come with it.

There's more to life than everything revolving around politics, important as politics are.


Perhaps its also having a media that doesn’t contaminate the minds of others


- If you ever work out how exert that sort of fundamental control over the media & yet sustain a truely free media then you might be able to make that kind of judgement; till then I prefer things left as they are, thanks.

Far better to trust freedom & the people's better sense whilst maintaining your own free personal choices.


[edit on 5-7-2006 by sminkeypinkey]



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 08:26 PM
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Well I must confess it looks like I'm the only person who would register emotionally happy in the event Blair was assonated.

However whilst it’s all very well to say problems with democracy are “just life” or that “their solutions are debatable” I don’t think any of my five complaints cannot be fixed, in ways that would only enhance the quality of our government.
Mass media ownership tops the list. Sminkeypinkey is correct to say we have problems with bias because we do not go the other way of asking government to judge what is acceptable (and I am truly grateful for that). But this has no relevance whatsoever to the problem of mass media ownership. I mean how does a government not restricting what goes into print; have anything to do with who owns the press? Bias is a fundamental right both to read and to produce (I do not dispute that). Yet letting one individual control a quarter of the mainstream press; literally hundreds of sky TV channels including a few 24hour ones like Fox and Sky News has done no favours to this country that I can see.
It might have led us into a war because Murdoch (and others like him) sack people who don’t toe their line. And it might be impossible to prevent people from doing that without greatly endangering the freedom of the press. Even so it’s not impossible to prevent its centralised scale coming from one individual. We are quite capable of demanding laws that limit what in the way of newspapers and news TV channels any one individual can own. I acknowledge that whilst the absence of this greatly undermines our democracy it does not (by itself) merit the assassination of a leader. It’s when you couple this with my other 4 points that you get a more serious problem.

But if say ownership of the mass media was broken up; and say any MP was free to both propose a law and have it voted on, or if minus that then (a more controversial move) would be to abolish constituency system; or reform the general voting system; then I would respect Blair as a fully democratically elected leader and in no way would feel emotionally happy if anything injuring-life threatening happened to him (no matter how much I may detest what he did).
But I do not respect Blair as a democratically elected leader because whilst he may have been “democratically” elected (in a constituency were the opposition vote was split between 15 other candidates) I know that its fact both he (and his government) benefit too much from what I perceive to be the problems with our democracy; and its remains my belief that he would NOT be in government if it were not for what I perceive to be the problems with our democracy (hence he benefits to much from democracy problems in my view).
He certainly benefits from his relationships with the centralised media, and no doubt it’s because of this (above all other reasons) that the mass media remains centralised.

P.S My emotional happiness for a Blair assassination does not lie in the high hope that someone much better will succeed him; it lies merely in the fact it would set a president (warning) to anyone who succeeds him; about what happens when you lie about why we go to war, or when you curtail ancient British freedoms in the name of anti terrorist legislation (and many other such things).
Of course these things infuriate me, but they are personal beliefs-grievances and I have enough tolerance for the opinions of others not to be emotionally happy towards violence for removing their leaders. On the contrary it disgusts me.

But undemocratic methods are not allowing this to be the case. Mass media ownership is a part of it; and the sooner it may be done away with the sooner people like me may go back to sleep again. But I accuse of Blair of not only taking advantage of the mass media but of also exploiting older problems which for reasons (not in the interests of democracy or our people) have not been resolved. This is a cocktail is it not?
Doesn’t this cocktail affect the freedom of the best to rise up and lead the British people? Is it not at least harming the effectiveness of democracy to control not just this government but anyone it has not limited from governing from governing responsibly?
And as long as at least a few of the problems within this cocktail are not dealt with then the facts themselves present (even if not in public consciousness) a serious problem to any leader’s democratic accountability and so hence authority.
I tell you that if this cocktail is not resolved; then people like Blair who drink from it loose my respect, not just as decision makers (that perception may change like the wind in nearly anyone) but as democratic leaders. You can’t join a party and become a part leader without the support of the powerful; and if (as currently) the powerful are people like Murdoch heading an unbroken media network that they can and do lawfully command for political ends; then the powerful is to my mind too many of the wrong people. It’s just not respectable; especially given the other problems-limitations of the unreformed system we seem destined to live in.

On Replies…
Paraphi did a really good honest response. Although according to it no matter how serious my five complaints may be the general publics response will always be “that’s life”. I dislike this “submissive” attitude because I reckon it enables nothing but trouble-discontent for the future. However this applies to more things than just democracy reform. Therefore no matter how much we dislike it, you’d be delusional to reject it.

Meanwhile Sminkeypinky Quoted nearly everything I said so that he could insert his own message as much as possible. That’s fine; but I take issue with ripping apart the message itself, then quoting it distorted before proceeding to answer it.

I.e. I said “Why do we need constituencies? Given that so many people’s votes are counted but don’t count” (me living in a area conservative since the 1920’s being an example of that”

Yet he quoted “Why do we need constituencies?” (Before going on to explain what constituencies do; therefore making a strong point that’s still mostly irrelevant to my actual question).

So sorry Sminkeypinkey but I had to point this out.
Although apart from that you made some even more effective points than usual!!



posted on Jul, 7 2006 @ 03:25 AM
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Originally posted by Liberal1984
Paraphi did a really good honest response. Although according to it no matter how serious my five complaints may be the general publics response will always be “that’s life”. I dislike this “submissive” attitude because I reckon it enables nothing but trouble-discontent for the future. However this applies to more things than just democracy reform. Therefore no matter how much we dislike it, you’d be delusional to reject it.


Actually my "that's life" expression is not submissive. In the UK we have a form of democracy that works and evolves. The key to it all is working with the system that we have and accepting that we are where we are because that is how we (as a democracy) have developed and are developing. Most of the time it works very well.

What I find difficult Liberal1984, is that you are banging on (quite legitimately and with some good points) about areas for potential reform on the one hand, whilst on the other hand you are HAPPY to have a democratic leader assasinated. I find this approach intolerable. If you were the reformist democrat that you like to think you are then you would be shocked by any political assassination in a democracy, not matter your personal dislike of the character involved.

Regards



posted on Jul, 7 2006 @ 06:19 AM
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Originally posted by Liberal1984
this has no relevance whatsoever to the problem of mass media ownership. I mean how does a government not restricting what goes into print; have anything to do with who owns the press?


- I suppose the answer to that is that once you start deciding who can own and go to press you are, however indirectly, influencing what is produced.

I don't think greater government intervention is necessarily the best 'solution' to those problems.
We already have % limits as to who can own what so what marginal reduction would you approve of?
Would 20% be OK but 22% not etc etc?
What if enforcing new lower limits means the loss of titles and jobs through business closures?
How about a new corporate group where the ownership is only partly (perhaps a minority holding) by someone/some group already at the limit of their individual holdings?

You also seem to be talking as if this were something new, it isn't.
If you go and check the history, the press has always been owned by a very few.

I also dispute that Murdock's empire is quite the influence you seem to imagine it to be. He may have Sky (but not own all the channels available on it) and some 'newspapers' but I know that you can't can show a majority of the British public reading Murdock papers or watching his Sky channels.

New media is fast challenging the old too......look at the net.

I agree too great a concentration of ownership is unhealthy but there are already limits and I just don't see the degree of problem you seem to.


It might have led us into a war because Murdoch (and others like him) sack people who don’t toe their line.


- I doubt that very much.

When MP's decided to go to war when they took the free vote in the House of Commons (a first under this Labour government) they weren't doing so because the Murdock media said so.
They were doing so on the basis of the official information they had at the time (from our own domestic gov sources and those of our allied friendly govs in several other countries), however inaccurate that might have been then.


say any MP was free to both propose a law and have it voted on


- They already are.
Often unsuccessfully but as was explained earlier even that is not necessarily the end of the story.


(a more controversial move) would be to abolish constituency system; or reform the general voting system


- ....and where do the general public's priorities come in to this?
For instance, even though the hunting bill had wide popular support it was almost lost on the grounds that it was nothing like the highest thing in the public's priorities.

Just because a particular topic or field consumes you is no guarantee that it does anyone else, right?


then I would respect Blair as a fully democratically elected leader


- Well like it or not he already is as far as our 'system' is concerned.


I do not respect Blair as a democratically elected leader because whilst he may have been “democratically” elected (in a constituency were the opposition vote was split between 15 other candidates)


- Actually Tony Blair polled more votes personally in his Sedgefield constituency than all the other candidates combined.
news.bbc.co.uk...
Good enough for you?

He also won the Labour party leadership election with 57% of the vote (ie more than the others combined).
news.bbc.co.uk...
Good enough for you?

You may not like the results but to question Blair's legitimacy on the basis of his democratic credentials is a lost cause before you even start.


I know that its fact both he (and his government) benefit too much from what I perceive to be the problems with our democracy; and its remains my belief that he would NOT be in government if it were not for what I perceive to be the problems with our democracy (hence he benefits to much from democracy problems in my view).
He certainly benefits from his relationships with the centralised media, and no doubt it’s because of this (above all other reasons) that the mass media remains centralised.


- That's your opinion, but that is all it is, opinion.

The elections were never run under your ideas so all you can do is wonder and guess.
As for "relations with the mass media"?
You are glossing over the fact that most of the UK media is right-wing and very pro-establishment, not pro-Labour.
All they have ever done is to begrudgingly back a winner on election day only.

The fact that you never mention it is telling me that you are obviously are too young to recall what real media support is like.
The Sun's extended love-in with Mrs Thatcher is a real example of having the press backing you; what Blair gets now is nothing like that at all.


Quoted nearly everything I said so that he could insert his own message as much as possible. That’s fine; but I take issue with ripping apart the message itself, then quoting it distorted before proceeding to answer it.


- I gave my view, at length after you did actually ask.
Sorry if I don't see things the same way as you.


I said “Why do we need constituencies?

Yet he quoted “Why do we need constituencies?” (Before going on to explain what constituencies do; therefore making a strong point that’s still mostly irrelevant to my actual question).


- Well firstly I would point out that I did express my own preference (STV with a mainly constituency based candidature topped up by a list) and secondly I think, as always, you should check out the historical perspective.

You seem to be complaining because right now your are lumbered with being in a constituency where a tory will get in no matter what and that as things are now it'll mean there's still a majority Labour gov at the end of the day.
It wasn't always so, things change.
Not so long ago it was people living in Scotland, Wales, northern England and the midlands complaining that although Labour piled up votes there and some Labour MP's got in that they were still going to be stuck with a majority tory gov.

But even so the idea that we get a party in government that has polled less votes than each individual opposition party is simply untrue....and trying to lump all the opposition together and claim we have a minority government is just playing with statistics; in our 3 party system that's how it almost always is.

The rest of my answer was because regardless of voting system I consider the fundamental reasons for basing things on constituencies is so important that it outweighs the short-term possibility that under FPTP votes can appear to pile up in some areas without doing much or, apparantly, favouring one particular party or other.


So sorry Sminkeypinkey but I had to point this out.
Although apart from that you made some even more effective points than usual!!


- Thank you.
One tries, one tries.



[edit on 7-7-2006 by sminkeypinkey]



posted on Jul, 16 2006 @ 09:41 PM
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Originally posted by paraphi
If you were the reformist democrat that you like to think you are then you would be shocked by any political assassination in a democracy, not matter your personal dislike of the character involved.


Where My Opinion Remains Unchanged…
I know what your saying Paraphi and in the past I would have disagreed with someone saying what I'm saying for exactly the same the same reasons.
Trouble is you believe Tony Blair is a democratic leader; I on the other hand do not. I accept he was democratically elected (so be it through a system less reflective of the opinion polls than other European countries like Norway). But in my eyes that doesn’t make him democratic. Obviously as a leader he has quite an authoritarian streak, so to does Bush as they will happily go to bed diminishing ancient British freedoms on the grounds of anti terrorist legislation. And as long as you believe-see that not all of it is for anti terrorist legislation then you see the authoritarian streak; at the very least (like the Iraq war) it is trying to mislead the public, and parliament, at the very worst it is part of sinister programme pioneered by the same puppet masters, and which will no doubt be succeeded by the next leader (be them Tory and Labour).

I see Tony Blair as the product of a system where all parties get the vast majority of their funding from ruthless millionaires, and even billionaires. The need to reward these people be it by changing our laws-policies (or just sticking to the same) and sometimes outright rewards (as in the Labour cash for honours scandal) makes almost all three parties equally c**p (through depending on your view of course some will always be more so than others).

That’s an old problem; but in the last few decades it’s been joined by the phenomenon of ever smaller mass media ownership. These together strip us of our right to democracy because when one man like Rupert Murdoch owns 172 newspapers and all 172 support the war in Iraq, and then you realise it’s a similar (through sometimes lesser) situation with almost all the other papers-forms of news media; then you have to ask how can we have a democracy if the public is informed by businessmen who do not face an adequate level of political competition?

And I don’t care how many times people tell Blair was democratically elected; he would have not been elected if the public were both well informed, and if the democratic system was best that’s available. That and his apparent immorality is enough for me to loose all respect for him, and all people like him who may succeed him. It’s finalised by the fact that if he was assonated I don’t think the person who succeeds him would be much different. So perhaps shoot, and shoot again is the only way to drive home the message? They ignore protests; in fact they ban them within over a kilometre from parliament.

What I Accept
It comes down to standards of what you accept; I'm triggered into disrespect by a lower standard than yours, but its through people like you he gains his legitimacy because even if its an illusion; me calling it an illusion would still be my interpretation of your opinion.
Therefore till the public mood changes I too won’t support anyone who assassinates him, but it’s because of public opinion, not him, nor our so called democratic system that, that stands as my opinion.

And I believe public opinion is wrong, but I believe it remains valid till we find a way of convincing it otherwise. Because that is a test which any good argument should be able to cross; and though I believe we have such an argument, the question is how come I can’t communicate it?

Probably because it’s not such a good argument.
Perhaps it’s because there’s something (knowledge wise?) missing, or it has yet be refined? But till these problems are solved an assassination attempt cannot be justified, and any joy in a hypothetical one can only be tolerated because people are free; and this joy would do no (practical) harm.

I want to know how I defend myself against I.D cards because the DNA and eye scan intrudes into my own personal space; but we shall see that anger reflected in public opinion when the time comes. It could be that the majority of English people do not want me living in their country if I won’t submit to I.D cards peacefully, in which case it’s a stark choice.

Sminkeypinkey breaking up mass media ownership control is the best way of leaving the freedoms of the press intact. Do it irrespective of who owns it, the fact is too few own too much of that which feeds us with information.

The way to do it is to say you can own say one or two national newspapers with audience numbers unrestricted. For all other papers title ownership is unrestricted but should the audience exceed a certain size (for a collective enterprise of more than 2 news providers) then at a 100% tax on all news profits kicks in.
Basically someone successful can sell there papers and start with building up a new one; or they can pay a 100% anything that consumes say more than 20% of the U.K market (first 20% of the market being exempt). Meanwhile anyone can own two national papers only and have an unrestricted share of the U.K market (from those titles only) or they can own more than two titles but pay a 100% on anything that succeeds more than say 20% of the U.K market.

So that’s the method I have in my sights.
Thanks for the info about how Blair did in his Sedgefield constituency I had no idea he got 57% of the vote in spite of the other 15 candidates. Now the question on everyone’s minds must be how much of his constituency also deserves to be assonated (joking).

So thank you Sminkeypinkey, paraphi, spencerjohnstone and everyone else who took part in this debate; because you are right, and I was wrong.




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