January 2006 Archives

Do journalists actually read the blogs which they quote from ?

It seems that the Daily Telegraph did not bother to read the clear statements on this website that it pre-dates even the referendum , let alone the creation of the office of Mayor of London etc., when they quoted from our blog entry: Nazi SS Shepherd Neame beer advert in the Evening Standard published on Deceember 16th 2005.

The Daily Telegraph via Tim Worstall:

'Spitfire' brewery shot down over advert

By David Sapsted
(Filed: 30/01/2006)

The brewery that raised both smiles and hackles for poking fun at Germans in a string of adverts has mentioned the war once too often.
[...]

In a newspaper last month, they ran the advert with a crossword-like clue that read: "German lager (4)". The answer had the last two filled in with letters "SS" in the lightning bolt shapes of the Schutz Staffel.

Quite apart from the obvious, crude answer to the clue - itself surprising because Shepherd Neame brews Holsten Export under licence at its Faversham brewery - it led to complaints being lodged with the authority.

Mr Livingstone, who had his own problems with the London Evening Standard after comparing a reporter to a concentration camp guard, branded the advert "astonishingly evil".

"The use of Nazi genocide symbols to advertise a mediocre beer is insulting to the victims of the SS and to present-day Germans," added the mayor on his web log.
[...]

That quotation was not written by Ken Livingstone, who, so far as we can tell, does not write a weblog - he has a whole taxpayer funded propaganda machine, a newspaper and the www.london.gov.uk website, which does not have any public comments section.

The Daily Telegraph have also "jumped the gun" on the official decision of the Advertising Standards Authority, which may very well find against the the advert. We are in receipt of a preliminary recommendation on a decison by the Advertising Standards Authority, on our compaint, along with those of several other people,

However, the ASA have not yet actually made a decison and published their official Adjudication, which they normally do on a Wednesday.

Just over 6 momths after the shooting of the innocent Jean Charles de Menezes, none of the Policemen involved have been arrested and charged with anything, despite the Independnent Police Complaints Commission's report having been passed to the Department for Public Prosecutions.

However, astonishingly, The Guardian reports that

ITN journalist arrested over leak from Stockwell shooting inquiry

Vikram Dodd
Wednesday January 25, 2006
The Guardian

A television journalist who revealed police blunders leading up to the shooting dead of Jean Charles de Menezes, has been arrested on suspicion of theft by detectives investigating the leaking of statements from the official inquiry to the broadcaster, the Guardian has learned.

ITV News revealed in August that Mr de Menezes, who was killed after being mistaken for a terrorist, was being held down when shot by firearms officers after it was passed documents from the Independent Police Complaints Commission's investigation into the shooting.

Surely this is a case of "shoot the messenger" who brings the bad news ?

Olympic site sewage

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Surely the Olympic Bid team and the Mayor of London and the Government must have been aware of the potential sewage problem as soon as the the Olympic complex site was chosen ?

Was this information hidden from the International Olympic Committee ?

The Guardian reports:

Sewage overflows threaten London Olympics

Matt Weaver
Thursday January 19, 2006

The government is drawing up urgent measures to stop the London Olympics being swamped in millions of gallons of sewage.

Ministers have set up a working group to "urgently consider" how to avoid sewage overflows backing up the river Lee, which runs through the Olympic site.

It comes after a report for the government warned that the games could be ruined by the sight and smell of overflowing sewage from London's outdated drainage system.

The study by Thames tideway strategy group found that even a moderate summer storm would overflow the drains, and send sewage up the river Lee on the tide.

The Olympics site is close to the biggest sewage overflow pumping station in London. The tideway group warned last November that there was currently a 100% chance of sewage overflows in the area between May and October.

To cope with the problem the tideway group recommended that the government build a £1.7bn "super sewer" under the Thames, stretching 22 miles from Hammersmith to Barking.

But the water regulator Ofwat has urged ministers to look at other options, because building a super sewer would add £45 to the annual water bills of Londoners. A separate study, commissioned by Ofwat, warned that the super sewer would be a risky construction project.

[...]

Another £45 a year in taxes !

For how long ?

Will the new Transport Commissioner Peter Hendy be better value for money thatn Bab Kiley.?

Mayor appoints new Transport Commissioner

Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London and Chair of Transport for London, today announced the appointment of Peter Hendy as the Commissioner of Transport for London.Peter Hendy has been Transport for London’s Managing Director of Surface Transport since 2001 and has overseen the transformation of London’s bus services. He is also Chair of the Commission for Integrated Transport.

What have the Mayor or his Transport for London bureaicracy ever done for us, except make transport ever more expensive and privacy intrusive ?

About this blog

This website comments on the policies of the Mayor of London, the London Assembly and the Greater London Authority and actually pre-dates even the referendum which took place before these public bodies were set up.

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Do not confuse that lot with the ancient office of the Lord Mayor of London either.

Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers

There are many good people trapped in the bureaucracies which run London. If you are thinking about blowing the whistle on shadowy and powerful people in Government or commerce, and their dubious policies then you need be very careful these days. The mainstream media and bloggers also need to take simple precautions to help preserve the anonymity of their sources e.g.

Links

Wikipedia article on the Mayor of London

Wikipedia article on the London Assembly

The Evening Standard newspaper - fulfills its role by scrutinising the Mayor and the GLA etc. rather more effectively than the politicians and bureaucrats do.

Mayor of London press releases

London Assembly press releases

MayorWatch - commercial news site about the Mayor of London etc.

Campaign Button Links

Watching Them, Watching Us, UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign
UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign

NO2ID - opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID - opposition to NuLabour's plans for Compulsory Biometric ID Card and National Identity Register centralised database.

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ASBO Concern - alliance of organisations and individuals who are concerned about the abuse of NuLabour's Anti Social Behaviour Orders.

MI5 encrypted contact web form use 999 or 112 to report immediate threats
Encrypted MI5 web response form NuLabour's "Climate of Fear" is not the same as the real fight against terror.

gamesmonitor_logo_150.gif Games Monitor - "Games Monitor is a network of people raising awareness about issues within the London Olympic development processes. We want to highlight the local, London and international implications of the Olympic industry. We seek to deconstruct the 'fantastic' hype of Olympic boosterism and the eager complicity of the 'urban elites' in politics, business, the media, sport, academia and local institutional 'community stakeholders'. "

Peaceful resistance to the curtailment of our rights to Free Assembly and Free Speech in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square and beyond
Parliament Protest blog - resistance to the Designated Area resticting peaceful demonstrations or lobbying in the vicinity of Parliament.

Save Parliament: Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill (and other issues)
Save Parliament - Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill Act

Ken Livingstone Links

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