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David Guyatt
02-13-2010, 11:24 AM
Bravo to Baroness Tonge for speaking her mind. With the usual reaction obviously.

Just in case anyone was beginning to think that Clegg and the LibDems were a viable party to take over from the other two... think again. Even asking for an investigation into possible wrong doing is dangerous these days.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8513662.stm


Lib Dem health spokeswoman sacked

http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/47291000/jpg/_47291984_tonge.jpg

The Liberal Democrat leader has sacked his health spokeswoman in the House of Lords after comments she made about alleged organ trafficking in Haiti.

Jenny Tonge told the Jewish Chronicle there should be an inquiry into claims that Israeli troops sent there after the earthquake were trafficking organs.

Nick Clegg said the comments were "wrong, distasteful and provocative" and dismissed her from her post.

He said she apologised "unreservedly" for any offence she had caused.

The peer is a patron of the news website, the Palestine Telegraph, which printed the allegations.

It claimed that members of the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), sent to help with the humanitarian effort after Haiti's devastating quake, were selling human organs.

'Highly offensive'

Baroness Tonge told the Jewish Chronicle: "To prevent allegations such as these - which have already been posted on You Tube - going any further, the IDF and the Israeli Medical Association should establish an independent inquiry immediately to clear the names of the team in Haiti."

If I had to live in that situation... I might just consider becoming one myself
Jenny Tonge, speaking about Palestinian suicide bombers in 2004
In a statement released on Friday evening, Nick Clegg said the allegations were "highly offensive".

"The comments were wrong, distasteful and provocative and I recognise the deep and understandable distress they have caused to the Jewish community," he said.

"While I do not believe that Jenny Tonge is anti-semitic or racist, I regard her comments as wholly unacceptable.

"Jenny Tonge apologises unreservedly for the offence she has caused."

It is not the first time that Baroness Tonge has been dismissed from a party post.

In 2004, when she was still an MP, then Lib Dem leader Charles Kennedy asked her to quit as children's spokeswoman following remarks she made about Palestinian suicide bombers.

She told a pro-Palestinian lobby group: "If I had to live in that situation - and I say that advisedly - I might just consider becoming one myself."

She retired as an MP after the incident, but entered the House of Lords.

In 2006, she was reprimanded by Lib Dem whips after saying the party was "probably in the grip" of the pro-Israel lobby.

(my italics)

Peter Presland
02-13-2010, 01:07 PM
Time and time again I find myself simply lost for words.

Remove references to Israel and the IDF, substitute them with any other country and militia ('Defence Force') and most people would simply burst out laughing at the way that reads - the sheer in-your-face absurdity of it.

But we can't have anyone suggesting that prima fascia evidence of serious criminal behaviour by the self-styled 'most moral army in the world' be investigated to prove it wrong now can we?

As for ANY of the main political parties in this country; there is nary a fag-paper between them when it comes to the epoch-defining issues of the age. The name of the game is 'distract and divide the Sheeple with domestic trivia and keep them in fear of that dreadful scary terrorist threat, whilst the real agenda is pursued out of sight and out of mind. The leadership of any party with serious aspirations to 'governing' needs to be either already complicit (Cameron/Brown) or sufficiently wet behind the ears to be readily susceptible to those 'offers which cannot be refused' that our esteemed SIS's, their masters and gophers are so well practiced at making.

Until the system itself collapses or is collapsed my vote will always go to 'None of the above' - on principle. I know it will have bugger-all effect - and the galling thing is 'THEY' KNOW IT. But I do it anyway

David Guyatt
02-13-2010, 01:56 PM
Until the system itself collapses or is collapsed my vote will always go to 'None of the above' - on principle. I know it will have bugger-all effect - and the galling thing is 'THEY' KNOW IT. But I do it anyway

Me too. Not voting at all is the only means I have to protest about the nature of our wholly fixed democratic system of control.

Peter Lemkin
02-13-2010, 04:01 PM
The English speaking countries [and some others] are forever doomed to a 'two party system' [really a one party Corporate/Oligarchy system, with two wings]. Add on the ease of the ability to rig elections in the 'West' and provide both propaganda and dirty tricks in electioneering, along with funny money for the most right-wing candidates and what do you get....what we have......borderline neo-fascism [under the guise of normative representative popular democracy]. What a joke. Bad joke. Deadly joke.

Magda Hassan
02-13-2010, 11:04 PM
It is my observation that these 'middle' parties like the liberal democrats that seek to make a middle path between the 'labor' parties on the one hand and the tory parties on the other will always in the end bend rightwards. They are usually made up of disaffected petit borgeois types who for one reason or another can't stomach the local tory party version and want to make their own mark. Eventually they will return to type. They really wish to be one of the big players and be 'accepted' by the big players. They sell out every time to get that acceptance. The 'differences' are too small to really matter in the end.

David Guyatt
02-14-2010, 09:37 AM
I've always seen them a lightening rods, there to earth public discontent by the small minority who are smart enough not to fall for the two party system of government. Certainly this is the case in the UK where past leaders of the LibDems are so Establishment types that it's embarrassing - and I don't just mean former spook Paddy Ashdown.