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back to article Ex-Sun chief to fight Davis in '42 days' by-election

Errant Tory MP David Davis’ campaign to force a debate on civil liberties in the UK looked in danger of descending into a tabloid farce this morning as it emerged that his only serious opposition was the former editor of The Sun. The LibDems have already said they will not fight the by election in Haltemprice and Howden, while …

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Support

We should be supporting this guy, especially given the stance El Reg and all it's readers and commentators have taken over this gov's systematic erosion of our basic civil liberties.

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Black Helicopters

Vanity?

Probably. But I notice just about everybody is having a go at Davies for making a principled stand, ruminating on splits in the Tories etc etc without actually looking into the substance of *why* he resigned.

But if Kelvin McKenzie gets elected... then God help us all.

Black helicopters - because they'll arrive in 42 minutes.

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Anonymous Coward

Murdoch running a candidate for election?

No surprise that labour won't field a candidate.... if they couldn't let their own MPs vote freely on the issue in Parliament then they can't afford to let the unwashed masses freely vote on it. I just read Diane Abbots comments and she makes a lot of sense, sorry to hear that Labour MPs were bullied and bargained to support it.

Sorry to hear that tax payer money was spent to get the DUP to support it.

If Rupert Murdoch wants to fund Kelvin MacKenzie, then good, Kelvin can as a symbol for Murdoch if he likes. Even with all of Murdochs press behind him, he would still lose.... and then we'd go after Murdoch's press & Sky TV propaganda outlets. He can't fund politics and run news programs and newspapers and expect to keep control of your media empire.

Political parties can't run media empires in UK, it would be nice to see News International lose its control of media outlets.

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Silver badge

pick your battles

My initial reaction, when I heard this story, was "yes!" here's someone standing up for our liberties. However, in practice I can't see what he will acheive - apart from a small amount of temporary publicity.

The bill will still progress through parliament (and hopefully get tossed out by the Lords). One M.P. on one side or another makes little difference, especially now that the first vote is passed.

The best personal result he can get is retain to his seat - even though he is unlikely to get any competition from the major parties. At worst, he will find that the voters in that constituency (and don't forget, it's only them who get to vote. Other people's views don't matter)either don't like his stance, or object to the imposition of an unnecessary election. In that case an experienced politician - even if you disagree with his views, will be replaced by a "nutter" who will have been given this opportunity on a plate.

The big question has got to be: does he own shares in a CCTV manufacturer?

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Stop

You can rule out UKIP

and the BNP (who apparently have reasonable support in the area - so said Breakfast Beeb) as they 100% agree with Desperate Dave. Be a bit of a one sided debate and the MRLP will obviously disagree with everyone including themselves.

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a majority of voters apparently support the 42 day legislation

A small majority (unlike, say ID cards, where most people are against them) expressed a preference for 42 days, when asked a loaded question.

And as was mentioned in the House t'other day - Parliament is for making good laws, not popular ones.

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Ash
Boffin

Murdoch

Rupert Murdoch, our 'lovely' global hatemonger. I can see the Sun headlines now and I despair.

Boycott Sky and the other Murdoch propaganda channels.

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McKenzie must be Stooped at ALL COSTS!

Murdock's side kick McKenzie must be STOPPED AT ALL COSTS! it is bad enough having The Sun and Sky TV News preach to us here in the UK and Fox TV News in the US!

Gordon Brown thinks that David Davis quitting is a stunt and a farce, then a big majority of we Voters feel Gordon as PM is a Joker! - why does Brown not let us have Our Choice and call a General Election!

It is fine McNulty and Blears doing the radio and TV rounds today smirking at David Davis, they are old labour and just want to hang onto their Gravy Train jobs as MP's with the likes of Milliband and Balls! the young ones of labour they are just WIMPS!

Bring on a General Election!!

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Stop

a sun reader writes...

well. if you're not doing anything wrong, you've nothing to worry about!

[sorry. got to go. someone in riot gear is kicking my front door in]

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Legal question

Since Murdoch is neither a UK citizen nor domiciled here for tax purposes, can he contribute to a political campaign?

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Anonymous Coward

Sleepwalking

It is true the moron in the street is happy to surrender his freedoms. He never used them much anyway so why get upset over their loss?

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"majority of voters apparently support the 42 day legislation"

... said a hack from the Sun. Must be true then.

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Joke

Wouldn't Scott McNealy have to become a UK citizen first?

Oh wait, it's The Register, so the article under the headline clearly has nothing to do with computers.

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Kelvin MacKenzie supporting 420 days?

Something tells me he'd quickly change his mind if some enterprising person were to hijack his PC and start sending dubious information.

In a time where the Gvt is successfully instilling fear into the masses is exactly the wrong time when legislation like this should be considered, as the great public "knee jerk" reaction is guaranteed.

Whether or not Davis wins or loses his election, I can only laud him on attempting to wake people up to the fact they're sleepwalking into losing their historical liberties.

Personally, I'm all for informing people that influence policy on something that affects general liberties, such as this, that at some point in the future, when it's most inconvenient to them, they will have this applied to them.

If they are willing to submit to that, then let them play!

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Paris Hilton

Odd

If Mr Davis was unopposed, the whole issue would float away - which is probably why labour, at least, would not want to oppose him

McKenzie, whom I regard as one of the biggest onanists ever to walk this earth, and, by implication, Murdoch, who probably I regard as serious competition to Murdoch, are keeping this firmly in the public eye.

You have to wonder why.

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b
Go

Write to the press...

I trust everyone who cares about the issues mentioned above is writing to the press in support of Davis' crazy but laudable acts.

Do not let them get away with brushing these important issues under the carpet or make this about the tedious punch and judy show of uk politics!

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Flame

Good on Him

A political figure with some balls and not just some wet drip willing to beg and roll over.

As for the prick from the Sun, well, next time one of there "writers" decides to carry a fake bomb onto a train, lock the arsehole up for 420 days. Then let him go, saying sorry.

Personal I wouldn't even wipe my arse on the Sun for fear of covering my arse in Murdochs shit.

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Alert

So let me get this right...

When Davis claims a massive victory in this safe conservative seat, he's going to try and claim some kind of political capital?

That's like trying to impress the girls at school by beating up the kid with Down's Syndrome.

The best labour can do is refuse to play along with this pathetic, empty show of political game playing.

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Anonymous Coward

OFCOM should be notified

Well searching a little deeper....

http://www.ofcom.org.uk/static/archive/itc/itc_publications/itc_notes/view_note63.html

"No licence may be held by a local authority, a religious body, POLITICAL body or advertising agency"

I for one would like to see Murdoch and McKenzie fight this one, they would lose more than an election. It would be fun to see Sky behave like Fox does in the US, only to see that used as evidence as to why they should be stripped of their broadcasting license.

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Unhappy

...Davis was actually swimming against the national tide on the issue...

As a woman said on the BBC programme, Question Time, last night..."I'm sick of being told what I think by opinion polls." Admittedly she was talking in response to a discussion on the Lisbon Treaty but the point stands.

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Paris Hilton

Divisions???

Gordon Brown seems to be even less capable of doing basic maths!

How many Labour MPs voted with the Opposition on 42 days? Thirty six.

How many Tories voted with the Government? *One*

How exactly he can have the bare-faced gall to spin that as representing "deep divisions" in the Tory camp, I'm not sure.

Paris, because even she could probably work the maths out...

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Anonymous Coward

scum

this guy is scum... as is rag of a paper - sadly it's great at brainwashing the masses.

Who needs religion anymore, we have reality tv, celebs and racial bigatry.

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I can't see Davis losing.

He's going into this as the "I'm standing up against The Man" candidate and no matter how much all the politcal commentators go on about splits in the party and complain about the way he has gone about this, he has still gained a lot of respect and support amongst the public.

If nothing else, he has the novelty value of being a front bench politician taking an unequivocal stance on an issue. That alone will get him more support than an ex-editor of the Sun will manage.

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IT Angle

Ex-Sun Chief

>> ‘Ex-Sun chief to fight Davis in '42 days' by-election’

I thought for a moment that this might actually have an IT-Angle, until I realised you meant Kelvin MacKenzie and not Scott McNealy. I suppose that was your plan.

On the subject, if I lived in David Davies' constituancy, I would happily vote for opposing candidate had a chance of winning - except one sponsored by Rupert Murdoch. Not because I disagree with David Davies' stand on civil liberties, but because of the arrogance of the man - standing for re-election might mean something if it were a marginal seat. Risking a safe seat isn't taking a stand, it is just a waste of everyones time and money.

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Alien

The Sky's the Limit for Some .....Others Fly to Many Dimensions*

Mr Murdoch's stance on the issue will be very revealing, and probably also conflicting, for he has many masters and mouths to feed, with no one In Control Mastery.

* Its a Stephen Hawking/Richard Dawkins thing :-)

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@steogede

agree 100%. Your post was more articulately put than mine...

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IT Angle

The UK needs American style electronic voting machines

You see then the next Parliament will have a majority of tech savvy geeks who nobody has ever heard of.

Hacking your way into the Commons will be about the same as buying your way into the Lords was, so it's no big deal.

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Flame

Majority of Voters Appear Thick

"as a majority of voters apparently support the 42 day legislation"

Judging by the cretinous comments being played on the BBC news, the general public are spectacularly badly informed. Spouting gems such as "They should be held until they're proven innocent" and "They should be held until they've had a trial".

I'd leave if there was anywhere good to go.

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This post has been deleted by its author

McKenzie on the radio

I heard this 42tard on Today this morning. He really is the exact opposite of David Davis and a paid up member of the 'nothing to hide, nothing to fear' party.

@El Reg: please do a little story about the Irish 'No' to the Lisbon treaty, I'd like to type Eurotard.

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Full Support

For Davis on this one, even though as a LibDem I would normally want to take his seat in any byelection. But not this byelection, based on his reason for calling it. Labour has no such excuse for failing to contest it, but they clearly want to avoid a humiliating defeat on an issue on which they claim to be in line with public opinion, but don't have the guts to stand and fight on whatever principles they still claim to have.

Davis is supporting LibDem policy on the issue of internment, and we can't afford to return to what this policy did in Northern Ireland. If public opinion polls say Davis will lose, then having a proper debate on internment initiated by someone with the guts to risk losing his job in order to lead public opinion on why internment is a very bad idea can only be a good thing.

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Black Helicopters

Notice to Crackers and Hackers everywhere:

Please upload all of Al-Qaeda's greatest hits onto Kelvin MacKenzie's Work and Home PC, Mobile phone etc.

Fake the odd order for few dodgy liquids and castor-oil seeds.

Then make an anonymous call to the local Black Helo squad to ship him away for 42-days (more if possible).

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Anonymous Coward

"majority of voters apparently support the 42 day legislation"

That completely reputable and unbiased hack/spinmeister Alistair Campbell also claimed Davis is "completely on the wrong side of Public Opinion" so it definitely must be true. He's convinced me. Or he would have if he wasn't a lying shyster with obvious NuLab sympathies.

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Anonymous Coward

@steogede

"Not because I disagree with ....it is just a waste of everyones time and money."

Form which I deduce (possibly incorrectly)

1) Freedom does apparently have a price

2) you would go against your principles for money

Cowardly anonymous - 'cos its a surveillance society innit?

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Bronze badge

Vote for the pratt, it really matters.

It's possible, still, that nobody else will stand, and Davis is returned smugly unopposed, able to say Labour are chicken.

It is a stunt, but if an election is held, and people vote for Davis, rather than any other candidate--if people come out and vote--it's going to make Gordon Brown look rather tired.

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Paris Hilton

David Davis for World President...

Why are all the professional commentators ranged against David Davis?

And why are all the general public overwhelmingly in support of him?

Could there be some kind of disconnect here? Perhaps like the EU?

Or is it just that when one person writes something they all want to write it?

I only ask because I want to know...

Paris, because, whatever you say about her, she ALWAYS knew how to keep the man in the street happy (also party, bar, hotel room....)

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Stop

Am I too cycnical?

Is it that much of a pricipled stand to resign from a safe seat, especially when your closest opponent has declined to contest the resulting election? Or is it just an opportunity to kick the government when its down, which is what the opposition is there for.

It would be a much greater show of principle for the rebel Labour MPs to resign and stand as independents - in the current political climate, they are far from certain to regain their seats unless their opponents followed the LibDem lead and didn't contest. The resulting loss of an overall majority might stop the authoritarian cancer at the heart of this "New" Labour government or precipitate its downfall.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Simon Painter

"the Sun reading dullards of Hull will vote the way the red tops tell them to again"

Perhaps they will, but as Haltemprice And Howden doesn't include Hull within it's boundaries it's unlikely they'll have chance to vote in this by-election. Nice try, but no bananas for you.

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@Various

For all those blasting or at least questioning Davis' motives, and claiming that it's meaningless because it's a safe seat, I have a couple of questions for you.

1) if a politician of any political colour has the courage to quite over a matter of principle who the hell do you think you are calling them on it? It doesn't matter if the seat is safe, he's resigned his shadow cabinet post and seat in the House of commons. The very best he can hope for (apart from raising the profile of this issue) is to get back to the same position, every other outcome has him losing something.

2) of course he's fighting a safe seat, he can hardly run for re-election in some other constituency can he? This has to be the stupidest criticism of all. He's the shadow Home Sec., so he is not only in a position to protest this crap legislation, in many ways he's the best person for the job - as shadow Home Sec.Sure he has a safe seat, I don't think that having a marginal seat would have deterred him in any way after the recent gains by Conservatives in the UK political scene. In any case, I actually think he is motivated by his principles and would have resigned his seat no matter how small his majority. Some people actually have principles, it's rare for them to be successful in politics as principles are naggingly incompatible with political power.

3) How is it a meaningless act? Even if Labour didn't contest it, this is still a vote on a specific issue. That is what he made it.If Labour puts up a candidate and gets beat, it's a clear vote for Davis and against the 42 day detention. If Labour doesn't field a candidate they are effectively conceding the by-election and the debate. In neither eventuality is this a meaningless act.

It's obvious that the only strategy the government has is to deride Davis and try to portray him as a crazy man doing a loony thing. It's really kind of disconcerting to see The Sun supporting the Labour government, We've come a long way from the days when the Sun was considered to be as true blue conservative as Maggies G-string.

Yep, now there's an image to conjure with.

Personally I would be shit scared if I were in the UK right now. 42 days of detention without recourse to the course on the mere suspicion of some act? Excellent, so how many people like the vague wording of the laws governing terror offenses such as downloading a proscribed document? Have all the sheeple forgotten how easily a Home Sec. can issue a statutory instrument extending the reach or breadth of a law due to the 'unintended' vagueness of it's terms?

This is a crap law from a crap government and only a crap nation would accept it without a whimper. What kind of nation do you want to live in?

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Thumb Up

Go Kelvin!

Actually, I think it would be a bit of fun if Kelvin McKenzie won.

I read The Sun at lunchtime each day to relieve some of the job stress as it's an effortless meander of UK working class culture, only costs 25p, and unfailingly sports a delightful pair of tits on page 3. Kelvin isn't a bad sort really and his page usually makes for entertaining reading.

By contrast, I read The Mail when I am on holiday abroad to remind myself how bitter and twisted the middle classes are in the UK and how lucky I am to be somewhere else. Sheesh, the writers on that paper must put lemons in their mouths before they go to sleep!

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Sound Quality

@Darren B

Umm UKIP voted with Brown.

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the man behind headlines like “Gotcha”, “Up Yours Delors” and “Freddie Starr ate my Hamster”

You forgot:

"THE TRUTH"

"Some fans picked pockets of victims"

"Some fans urinated on the brave cops"

"Some fans beat up PC giving kiss of life"

Kelvin MacKenzie has never apologised for printing these headlines, and even 18 months ago claimed "The S*n told the truth" about Hillsborough. It's just a shame Davis' constituency is not in Liverpool - he'd be lucky to get 42 votes.

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Votes for sale

The entire vote on the 42-day bill exposed British politics as a sham. I remember a few months ago The Register ran a story about someone auctioning their vote on eBay. It was pointed out at the time that this was illegal, yet it didn't stop Gordon Brown from buying all the votes he needed to push this bill through the Commons. I honestly don't see the difference. The vote wasn't won on its own merits, it was bought with promises, concessions and dodgy deals (and tax payer's money, I hasten to add).

I am no longer of the opinion that we need to get Labour out of Government (or rather, I'm still of that opinion but there are more pressing matters), I'm now thinking that we need to reform the entire political system. My vote will be for sale on eBay at the next general election and I invite prosecution so that I can argue my case in a court of law. If it transpires that I'm guilty then so is Gordon Brown.

The former editor of The Sun, the Monster Raving Loony Party and anyone else who stands against Mr Davis in an attempt to turn this by-election debate into a farce are at least 2 days too late.

I trust that the Lords will throw this bill out at the earliest possible time. For saying these guys aren't elected, they have a damn sight more integrity and common sense than our elected officials. I still have faith in this part of our political system.

I imagine that sooner or later this thread will generate a comment along the lines of "the government have already fought this issue in paliament, why should they defend it in a by-election?" The answer to this is: It wasn't fought, it was bought!

How much are one-way tickets to Canada btw?

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National Enlightenment

Basically, the Sun's political stratergy is to appeal to people's ignorance, bigotry, fear and working-class inverse snobbery to spread misconceptions, propaganda and lies. The ultimate aim is to further Murdoc's neo-conserviative, religious right agenda and anyone who thinks the Sun is just a bit of 'harmless fun' is an idiot.

Suntard!

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Stop

waste of public money

We should all ignore DD until he just goes away, contesting this election is just a complete waste of public money. The bloke is a total cock, just like the rest of the con-servatives & only doing this to raise his own profile.

It's pathetic.

How many reg readers who normally bleat on about the government wasting "their" money are stupidly supporting DD's costly party-political posturing?

Haven't you all left the country yet, like you keep threatening to? No? Thought not. Tossers!

Maybe the detention periods could be reduced if we allowed the Security Services to torture terrorist suspects? That would be a better solution, surely?

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Principled Stand

The thing that really aggravates me is that this has been the first politician in many many years to have the balls to put his reputation and job on the line for something he believes in. (How many politicians have threatened to quit over an issue and subsequently haven't.) Politicians are constantly slagged off for their inability to give a straight answer and slippery nature but the second someone makes a clear stand they get slated anyway. Some so called "political commentators," have speculated it may be to make Cameron look bad or that he may still be interested in the leadership which is quite frankly ridiculous. Anbody who understands politics on any more than a superficial level would know that this is a crazy theory that is complete rubbish. Not only that they talk about 'Party divides,' and a 'crisis,' which angers me ever more. They just seem to make it up as as they go along, and seem to have very little knowledge of what is actually going on.

Finally Labour cite the fact that the public support it hence it must be right.

The public support hanging, the public want Labour out of office, the public didn't want to ratify the Lisborn treaty, and yet nothing is done or changed. The fact that the general public wants something does not make it automatically right.

It's parliaments job to protect people from their "baser passions," and stop stupid knee-jerk emotive reactions to things that are not fully understand.

So stop using this as evidence you stupid thick Labour MPs that somehow keep managing to appear on TV. Get David Milliband as a leader or at least get him making appearances and you may start to look good again.

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@ Mike Richards

Damn good question and having had a chat with m' learned friend it seems it would be illegal for the Dirty Digger to finance Kelvin McKenzie. Anyone worked out what his campaign ticket will be? Possibilty the Lying Bullshitting Bigot Party? Still we all know thw Sun always tells the truth, well it's version of it anyway!

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Anonymous Coward

@waste of public money 1.2 BILLION

I agree, Brown spent 1.2 BILLION quid buying the DUP's vote. The Labour party should knife Brown in the back before he gets them all voted out. Oh wait, you meant the little bit of money spent to GIVE THE PEOPLE THE VOTE on whether they should lose Habeas Corpus...

You know what I think, Labour had nothing, the best they can do is whine about a few quid spending on the vote. To me it screams WE'RE FRIGHTENED OF THE VOTE. Davis is even paying for his own campaign.

To me the man is a hero for taking a stand, after nobody stood up when Jacqui pre-seized assets before conviction, preventing people affording a lawyer, I would have expected a few complaints.... none.

When she criminalize reading some internet porn, on a crappy research paper that conflicts with others, the sheer afront of her to think so lowly of Brits that she's happily slap them in jail on bad evidence that a tiny minority would (wrongly judge) become rapists. Better to imprison 100000 innocent men than let one women suffer a rape? Fook you Jacqui, did anyone speak up? No? All you labour people sat on the benches like little yes gnomes?

"Haven't you all left the country yet, like you keep threatening to? No? Thought not. Tossers!"

Have so, wanker!

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Sinister Murdoch

Sounds as if an investigation into Murdoch's holdings in the media is overdue. Since when did an Aussie businessman of US citizenship gain the right to interfere in our politics? Clearly he is unfit to hold control of UK media.

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Flame

excuse me while i wipe the froth from my chin due to rage...

How the feck can this 42tard have his campaign financially supported by Murdoch? you must be eligible for a UK passport to give funds for political campaigns. His Bogroll of a "paper" would be the first to rant at any other politician accepting funds this was. Perhaps the company could then? nope, they're a foreign controlled entity to. McKenzie has no-ones interests in mind but his own.

Davies is in danger of becoming a hero of mine. A tory! How the feck did that happen? how did this country get so screwed by orweliian conspiracist controlling scum that the only libertarian prepared to take a stand comes from a tory front bench?

GB. YOU COWARD. if you had any cojones at all you'd be prepared to fight your cause, but have you ever given the people (remember us?the ones that pay for this debacle?) a chance to make their voices heard?

For the BBC, I don't care about whether Cameron no longer offer Davies cream custards with a mug of tea. I care about the removal of fundamental rights we've had for nearly a millennia, about scaremongering, about locking up people who have been convicted of NOTHING more than being Muslim looking without due care and attention. Think it'll stop there? like the anti terror laws that prevent you holding a placard near parliament without their permission?

Dawkins Damnit. I'm so bloody angry I hope there's fuel protests, and the Lisbon treaty burns, and strikes, and every sodding hate monger who peddles fear to maintain their stranglehold on power and who sold our rights for a 5 minute chat in no. 10 collects their P45. Scum; and they have the bare faced nerve to criticise Mugabe. At least he's honest about how he intends to keep power for as long as possible.

Apologies for rant. Viva la revolution. Where's the longest wall we can find?

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