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Craig Murray:  An Unpopular Article Mm11

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Craig Murray: An Unpopular Article

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Craig Murray:  An Unpopular Article Empty Craig Murray: An Unpopular Article




An Unpopular Article

1 Oct, 2019 in Uncategorized by craig

This article is probably unpopular. The point of this blog is not to make you agree, but to make you think; if I did not express views which are not the view of the majority, there would be no point in writing at all. This is not an applause seeking echo chamber of popular sentiment.

Boris Johnson has no more ardent political opponent than I. But some of the hysteria about him is overblown.

As a teenage delegate to a Liberal Party conference in 1976 (I think in Llandudno), I had to fend off the amorous advances of a politician who persisted even after I plainly told him I was not gay, and I ended up stabbing his wandering hand with the pin of my delegate’s badge, after which he went away. I regarded his behaviour as over drunken and over randy, but took the attitude then and now that humans are not perfect and inclined occasionally to fall prey to their basic instincts, especially when drinking. If we expected everyone to be perfect, we would live our entire lives in a state of disappointment. I expect a majority of sexually active adults have similar experiences at some time. I do not believe it healthy or sensible to elevate them to serious crimes.

(For the sake of clarity, I should add that I have never personally been accused of an unwanted physical advance).

I really do not care whether Boris Johnson squeezed Charlotte Edwards’ leg 20 years ago. I firmly believe women are every bit the equal of men, and I do not understand why it is somehow reckoned that Ms Edwards, and others in the same position, were unable to stab his hand with a fork, throw a drink in his face, or embarrass him by telling him clearly to stop. I do not accept the notion that difference of age and status between full adults makes firm rejection impossible – that thought did not cross my mind with the politician in Llandudno, who was a good deal older, more famous and wealthy than I, and in a position to further my political ambitions. Ms Edwards saying nothing at the time, saving it up for twenty years and then attempting to use the claim to cause major damage, appears to me behaviour as bad as the original.

I do realise that in this I have outlived the mores of the times. But no matter how fiercely I oppose a no deal Brexit – and I think it would be disastrous for every one but a few nasty financial speculators – I do not think the approach of throwing the kitchen sink of accusations against Boris Johnson is good for the long term health of politics. It also obscures with chaff the allegations of real wrongdoing, like directing public funds and assistance to the company of a woman with whom he was in a sexual relationship. That should be investigated. That is real wrongdoing.

Johnson’s arrogance before the Commons in refusing to apologise for the prorogation of parliament was deeply unpleasant, but I do not approve of the effort to delegitimise his use of language. Words like “surrender”, “betrayal” and “traitor” have centuries of political use behind them. Boris Johnson is as entitled to free speech as anyone else. It is perfectly legitimate for opponents to argue that his language is deliberately divisive and thus people ought to vote against him in the interests of harmony. The electorate can pay heed or not to such argument, as they see fit. But it is quite another thing to argue that such language should be excised from public life. Robust debate is an important aspect of free speech. Controlling the language of your opponents is the antithesis of democracy. I am firmly with John Stuart Mill on this one.

People were offended by Galileo and Darwin, by Gandhi, by Jesus and Mohammed. Causing offence is important to human development. Everyone is entitled to do it, even Boris Johnson.

Finally I had the misfortune to see Jess Phillips on BBC Breakfast TV yesterday morning and she gave, as an example of abuse of MPs the fact that every time she speaks about anti-semitism in the Labour Party she receives emails stating that she is exaggerating, or is a puppet of Israel. A great deal of what MPs plainly see as abusive online activity looks to me simply like people expressing their disagreement. People can be entirely right or entirely wrong in their views, but they still have a right to express them to Members of Parliament. I found Ms Phillips objection to people expressing disagreement deeply worrying.

I have no doubt MPs do receive death threats – I do myself sometimes, generally originating in Florida for some strange reason. But I do wonder how much exaggeration there is of this.

The Laura Kuenssberg case is seminal here. You may recall that 35,000 people signed a 38 Degrees petition calling for her removal for pro-Tory bias and after a major headline news campaign headed by the Guardian and BBC, claiming that the petition was full of abusive and misogynistic comments, 38 Degrees deleted the petition. However I went through all the comments personally and could only find one comment and a single related tweet which was in any way abusive or misogynistic. When I challenge 38 Degrees to produce the evidence of abuse, there was none. That was a very worrying example of the limiting of perfectly legitimate protest against Kuenssberg, on an excuse of “abusive social media” which was a lie.

There is insufficient plain speaking already in politics and the attempt to further contain and constrain, and limit political thought to acceptable channels and vocabulary, is worrying. Let Johnson say what he wills, and let the electorate judge that.

As for behaviour, I do not wish to see any further correspondence of the Overton window with sex negative feminism. I can personally think of one mutually fulfilling physical relationship in my own history, where the crossing of that difficult line from friendship to physical intimacy did indeed start with the squeeze of a leg under the table. The initiation of more intimate physical contact is the most critical point in the complex courtship rituals of developed human societies. To insist that verbal agreement must always be sought before a move to kiss or an exploratory caress of a leg or a shoulder, is a fundamental change in culture which I am not at all sure is desirable. The essential qualifier is of course that, if the other person either verbally or by action does not welcome the tentative first move, then the initiator must desist immediately. It is my own belief that sex-negative feminism seeks quite deliberately to invalidate perfectly normal heterosexual courtship and that the chattering classes have far too readily adopted this, in the interests of identity politics.

I am perfectly aware that what I have written will offend some pleasant people and is against current fashionable thinking. I am also well aware that less pleasant people will utterly misrepresent what I have written as a justification of sexual assault. I deplore entirely any non-consensual sexual activity forced on anyone, and I believe that the slightest indication of disapproval should lead to an instant stop. But to deny the existence of non-verbal communication, and make an issue of non-violent initiation of contact outside an erogenous zone, is to me not legitimate. I would also refer you to my last post, and the extraordinary difference in the treatment in these matters by the media and political classes purveying identity politics of those within the neo-liberal “centrist” consensus, like Bill Clinton and Brendan Cox, and those outside it, like Boris Johnson, Alex Salmond or Julian Assange. This is a misguided and an extraordinarily selective outrage.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

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Verdi
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Craig Murray: An Unpopular Article :: Comments

Verdi

Post on 01.10.19 12:50 by Verdi

Well, I agree and I think you are right Mr Murray.

Providing it's not unlawful and it's behind closed doors, or under the table for that matter, who cares what Boris Johnson gets up to.  Man woman or beast, who hasn't been the subject of unwanted (or wanted  Wink)  sexual advances at some time in life?  Love and lust make the world go round, it's preferable to war and want.  

Speaking personally, I would rather be groped by a member of the opposite sex than be blown-up by a bomb, or caught in the firing line of a Colt 45 (unless it's the canned variety).

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PeterMac

Post on 01.10.19 21:19 by PeterMac (Online)

Craig Murray:  An Unpopular Article 141410

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Post on 02.10.19 8:14 by JimbobJones

We all know why these slurs are being promoted, they are DESPERATE to remove Boris from office . . . . if the recent trivial issues are the best they can manage to dig up I find it re assuring that he is not that bad after all. Quite a surprise really, I thought he was bound to have much more serious allegations made about his past.

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Jill Havern

Post on 02.10.19 8:23 by Jill Havern

Funny how journalist Robert Peston's girlfriend Charlotte didn't report Boris when he was London Mayor, but waited until she's got a new job and needed to write an article, waited for 20 years until Boris became Prime Minister and is trying to deliver Brexit which they don't agree with.

And Robert Peston is on twitter discrediting Boris because he couldn't remember the incident 20 years later either.

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Verdi

Post on 02.10.19 12:35 by Verdi

Dishing the dirt on someone just to discredit is the lowest of low.

So what - shock horror, Boris Johnson had sex with someone outside of wedlock; he had a love affair; he had a sex affair.

It's not illegal, there is no law against it.

I wonder how many skeletons these critics have locked away in the cupboard.

Rent boys maybe? Rent girls maybe? Child prostitution maybe? Child abuse ....

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PeterMac

Post on 04.10.19 9:47 by PeterMac (Online)

No illegal wars. No lying to parliament.  No meetings with international terrorists.  No public meetings having tea and crumpets with home grown terrorists. No dodgy Expenses claims.  No pigs' heads.  No duck houses.  No employing a convicted criminal relative as a personal assistant.  No conviction for perjury or Attempt to Pervert the Course of Justice.  .  .  

If all they can find is that he got his leg over a couple of times, and tried it on with someone else - - - (so far as I can make out just the once, and since it was not reciprocated, never tried again )
- - - they really are desperate !

But then he is British, white, male, intelligent, educated, Christian, heterosexual, (and so far as we know, not a pervert) – all of which are now apparently deemed Character defects.

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Post on 16.10.19 23:22 by Milo

And I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Charlotte could not wait tell her friends the exciting news that Boris showed that sort of interest in her (not saying that he did). Big noting herself. I was the same when I brushed some fluff off Paul Keating's jacket in public in 1996 or thereabouts. Making a fool of myself like some Elvis groupie. Poor Boris - ego must be shattered to think that some people think he chose her.

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Post on 16.10.19 23:23 by Milo

Duplicate post deleted. Mod

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Verdi

Post on 17.10.19 1:36 by Verdi

@Milo wrote:And I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Charlotte could not wait tell her friends the exciting news that Boris showed that sort of interest in her (not saying that he did). Big noting herself. I was the same when I brushed some fluff off Paul Keating's jacket in public in 1996 or thereabouts. Making a fool of myself like some Elvis groupie. Poor Boris - ego must be shattered to think that some people think he chose her.

big grin Was it bumfluff?

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