Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Conservative Party (Tories), Britain’ Category

Outrage as UK Tories attack Trans Rights and Scottish Devolution

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Unpopular British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak – whose Brexit Tory party is around 20 per cent behind the opposition Labour Party in most credible opinion polls – has picked a fight with the Scottish Parliament over a minor administrative reform which improves the human rights of transgender people.

Across the British state, writes Mike Picken, there is a growing opposition to the Conservative UK government’s unprecedented blocking of a Scottish Parliament legislative Bill on transgender rights passed last month – the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill.

After weeks of misleading propaganda about what the Bill says and its implications for UK wide legislation, on 17 January the Tory government at Westminster announced they were going for the so-called ‘nuclear’ option of blocking the Bill using a ‘section 35 order’.

The ‘section 35’ mechanism is part of the 1998 legislation that created the Scottish Parliament and was only ever intended to be used as a last resort, if there was a grave threat of the Scottish Parliament trampling over other rights across the UK. During the passage of the 1998 legislation it was dubbed the ‘Governor-General’ clause, a reference to the British Empire’s colonial controllers, as it gives total discretion to a government minister to overrule democratic decisions. It has never been used before now and the legal basis presented by the UK government has been widely described as completely flimsy.

‘Section 35’ is being used to overturn the Scottish Bill as a political move by a reactionary government against progressive legislation, not because of an infringement of rights.

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Rishi Sunak’s Westminster Parliament Blocks Scottish Parliament Transgender Law Reform – British Labour Leader Keir Starmer Surrenders to the Union-Jack Far-Right

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Rishi Sunak’s governing Tories at Westminster have blocked a minor administrative human rights reform adopted by the Scottish Parliament which protects the rights of a very small minority, transgender people. It is an easy-peasy issue for all people on the liberal/social-democratic spectrum in Ireland – ranging from the entire left into significant sectors of the big right wing parties Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael.

In Scotland a similar liberal/social-democratic spectrum includes the ruling Scottish National Party (SNP), the SNP’s government coalition partner the Greens, and the Scottish Labour Party.
The Scottish Parliament voted for this minor reform – which is less favourable to transgender people than the existing law in the 26 county bit of Ireland – by 86 votes to 39. This huge majority followed a very long drawn-out debate.

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Voters in the British State Reject Brexit – The Emperors Have No Clothes

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Lots of recent data tells us that voters in the British state – in the nations of England, Scotland, Wales (and in the statelet called Northern Ireland) – reject Brexit. Here is the latest graphic :

Rejecting Brexit – Well Outside the Margin of Error

The polling expert John Curtice publishes lots of interesting information on this and other related subjects.

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Local politicians Smile for the Camera with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in the North of Ireland – Don’t mention the Elephant in the Room – Brexit

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John Hurson brought this parody real picture to our attention. He chose a very appropriate James Connolly quotation to describe the scene.

“Yes, ruling by fooling, is a great British art with great Irish fools to practice on.”
James Connolly

“Yes, ruling by fooling, is a great British art with great Irish fools to practice on.”

James Connolly

John Hurson hits the nail on the head – this gaggle of politicians cannot agree a formula to restore Stormont. The reason is Brexit, which is opposed by a large majority of people living in Ireland.

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“Neither faction of the Conservatives is nicer. But, for the moment, Trumpian Conservatism is dead. It’s back to food banks and dole queues and cuts to services” – David Renton

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The British socialist David Renton offers an interesting analysis of the turmoil in the 2022 British Tory Party – Three Prime Ministers in quick succession – and he warns :

Sunak’s Conservatives will be more socially liberal than the people who backed Liz Truss or Boris Johnson. But they will also be much more ardent cutters – and this at a time when inflation is at 10%, interest rates are rising, and fuel bills are rocketing…

A contrast – The Financial Times reports

Markets look forward to “dullness dividend” in wake of Truss turbulence

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Changing of the Guard 💂‍♀️ in London’s 10 Downing Street – British Prime Ministers 2022

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Brilliant Satirists are superb political analysts – getting the message across, injecting lethal poison into the heart of a terminally ill body. Examples :

Jeremy Hunt, current finance minister (chancellor) in Britain, brings misery to the masses https://www.belltoons.co.uk/hotoffpress
Rishi Sunak , the latest British Prime Minister, married a billionaire, Akshata Murthy. https://www.belltoons.co.uk/hotoffpress
The story is true – Liz Truss, British PM for 50 days, is guaranteed £115,000 a year for life.
The tweet is a humorous fake – John Truss, father of former British Prime Minister Liz Truss, is a socialist
A prediction of doom https://www.belltoons.co.uk/hotoffpress
Rishi Sunak, Leader of the Pack
Brexit Britain – the view from the other side of the Irish Sea – Martyn Turner, The Irish Times

Solutions? Smashing Brexit would be an excellent start!