Tuesday 24 March 2015

Mountain v molehill

I’ve been trying to find out the reaction to Theresa May’s speech about how the government intends to clamp down on extremism. How it went down with the public and so on.

The BBC did air the speech, but so did Sky. Reactions seem to fall into two camps. 

The Islamists didn’t think much of it. Some say they wish to put a knife through her neck, others that they wish cars would run her over. 

Other, less fanatical responses range from ‘too little too late’ to “yeah yeah, all talk and no ‘do’.”
Odd that Anjem Choudary has been invited to address the Oxford Union, which you might think  a bit of an impudent invitation under the circumstances.

While David Cameron is still insisting that ‘extremism’ is entirely different from Islam, even when it’s called Islamist extremism, Theresa May’s intentions seem decidedly pie in the sky.
She mentioned the Trojan Horse effect. Yet the BBC tells us that there is no evidence that such a thing exists. It all seems to hinge on how one interprets ‘extremism’, ‘plot’ , ‘British values’ and the meaning of the word ‘meaning.’

What irritated me yesterday was that David Cameron’s supposed ‘gaffe’ eclipsed every other item of news yesterday. Everyone on the BBC was hell-bent on making an enormous mountain out of what most people will think of as a small mole-hill. It was an obsessive, media-driven, overblown, explosion of substance-free, boring, manufactured speculation about 'what David Cameron meant' when he said something unremarkable about his intentions for the far off future.

With luck one day the media will eat itself, or push a knife through its own neck; or get run over by a truck that it didn’t see coming because it was completely absorbed in its own irrelevant speculation.


  1. I can't understand the kerfuffle post Cameron's so-called gaffe which has been given life, not only at the BBC, but throughout the MSM. More to the point of this blog though, during his interview with, I think, Michael Fallon this morning on Today, Humphrys appeared genuinely angry that Fallon was dismissive of the whole thing and, according to Humphrys' spluttering protest, failed to give a straight answer to a straight question. OTOH such a failure is surely the default existential reality when it comes to interviews with politicians. But why so angry? I would have thought Humphrys might be pleased that Cameron - in Humphrys' view - kicked himself in the shins. As I wrote above, I'm mystified both by the hoo-hah in general and Humphrys' indignation in particular. Perhaps someone could enlighten me.

    1. John Humphrys' huffing and puffing was quite ridiculous:

      "Oh, this is of constitutional importance surely!"
      "In a way that's verging on the irresponsible, isn't it?"
      "These aren't silly little trifling that effect only the people within the Westminster beltway. They effect all of us, the country!"

      Michael Fallon missed the chance to reply, "Yes, these ARE silly little trifling things that only appeal to the Westminster bubble. It's little more than glorified gossip."

  2. Isn't claiming this is of constitutional importance evidence that Humphrys and too many other people now think you have a Presidential system instead of a Parliamentary one? Maybe you do now.

  3. Eventually people, including governments, have to adjust to reality.

    20 years ago it would have been unthinkable for the state to talk about interfering in religious observance or closing down places of worship.

    But that is what May is now talking about.

    At last we have on the agenda Sharia Courts and the use of Mosques as bases for subversion. Actually the latter is a far less serious problem than the Sharia courts.

    However, we don't yet have a coherent policy for combatting and reversing the advance of Sharia.

  4. The whole May thing is a joke. The Tories will only get the legislation through if they get an outright majority and , even then, I bet it won't be enforced.

  5. The legislation will only go through if the Tories get an outright majority and even then it will not be enforced.

  6. I have concerns that this clampdown is more likely to be applied to Christian street preachers, evangelists and leafleters than to those from the Muslim community.


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