This clipping is taken from an article in todays Ham and High. The Mayor of Barnet, Brian Coleman was talking about political bloggers. The article was a follow up of the Standards case where he was found guilty of breaching the London Borough of Barnet's code of conduct.
So Brian Coleman believes that people like me, who write blogs about politics should be regulated in the same way as Paedophiles. Let's think this through. What are bloggers? They are members of the public who use a service such as this to share their views on topics of their choice with the general public. That may be football, music, sport or politics. Now on my blog, I talk about local politics. There's nothing said on my blog that you won't hear in pubs, dining rooms, on the bus or on the tube, as people talk about local politics. We live in a free society where if I want to say "Brian Coleman is doing a lousy job" I can. It's not like China or Nazi Germany where you get imprisoned, beaten up or murdered for criticising "Public figures". All this blog does is say these things to a wider audience. It's called Free Speech. I'd suggest that if Brian Coleman doesn't like it, he's not a very good Tory.
Let's compare this perfectly legal activity which has formed part of our national culture, with Internet Child Porn, as Brian Coleman seems to think they are equally serious issues. Unlike people discussing Barnet Council, people abusing children is illegal. To give you an example of how most parents feel about the issue, let me share a little story with you. 8 years ago my best friend and former business partner was in the death throws of pancreatic cancer. He'd had his leg amputated and was a couple of days away from death.He asked me to visit and said he wanted to discuss an important issue. When I entered the room, I could see he was in agony. I asked if everything was OK. He replied "Rog, I've stopped the morphine as there's something I needed to discuss and I wanted to be completely with it". He went on to explain that he was worried that when he died, his wife and children may be targeted by predatory paedophiles, who befriend single mothers to get to their children. He explained that he wanted me to keep an eye on them and if anything untoward ever happened to notify his brothers, who would deal with it as a family matter. He didn't care about the pain, just his kids.
I would never, ever trivialise the issue of child pornography. It as a wicked evil in our society. I cannot believe that a senior Conservative politician such as Brian Coleman can think it is on a par with someone saying "Brian Coleman is a Lousy mayor". Of all the blogs I've written about Brian Coleman, the one he finds the most objectionable, the one he finds most beyond the pale and the one he (Mis)quotes in the Ham & High is this one (CLICK HERE it isn't rude). I consider it to be a rather frivelous and mild bit of political lampoonary, on a par with much of what Simon Hoggart may write in his Guardian Diary. Brian Coleman clearly considers that it is on a par with Child Abuse, based on his comment. He either takes himself far, far too seriously or alternatively he has no concept of how vile the man in the street finds kiddie porn. Either way his statement is in shocking bad taste. Yet again, he shows himself to be completely out of touch with the concerns of the average family in Barnet.
I have this question for Brian Coleman. Does he think that Policemen should be pulled off Child Abuse cases to arrest bloggers for saying he's useless at his job? If he does, then he's worse than we all thought. If he doesn't, then he should issue a public apology for belittling the victims of such a terrible crime.
The Barnet Eye supports everyone in the London Borough of Barnet and beyond who believes in justice, honesty, decency and transparency. If you have been a story which you want the world to hear Just CLICK HERE to email me your story. We will help and support you as best we can.
The Barnet Eye Age UK 10K Challenge Run.
This blog has committed to raising £500 for Age UK Barnet. We are asking our readers to sponsor us donating £2 each to this great cause. Click on this link to donate
If we do not reach our target by 3rd March, we will cease publication of this blog. So if you don't like us, tell all your friends to ignore this appeal !
We the Undersigned, are totally opposed to the closure, sell off or downgrading of the Library service in the London Borough of Barnet.
We believe that Libraries are a vital part of the Borough and recognise the importance of having trained Libraries run by trained librarians. We believe that it is vital to have "quiet space" for students to study.
We believe that closure of the service would cause untold damage to the citizens of Barnet and is totally opposed by the vast majority of the population.
I got into blogging about politics by accident. I had intended to blog about local music.
I've run a music recording & rehearsal studio in Mill Hill, North West London since 1979. I play in a band called The False Dots, over the years we've played all over Europe, but now we mostly just play local shows as we're all too old and lazy. We play up tempo punky tinged rock, tinged with a very dark humour. We've bene joined on stage by various friends over the years such as Boz Boorer (Morrissey's Musical director) and Huw Lloyd Langton of Hawkwind.
I've organised many charity gigs with artists such as Kate Nash, Chris Spedding & Lee Thompson from Madness.
I also help organise many local festivals. I love a good row !!!! Oh and I did a blog on the Edgware Times for a while.
The Barnet Eye is always pleased to publish contributions from guest writers. Just CLICK HERE to email me your story.
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If you have received a penalty fare at a Thameslink Station and you sent an appeal off to the Independent Penalty Fare Appeals Service, did you notice that this says at the bottom of the letter you got back "London and South Eastern Railways T/A IPFAS". In other words, it's not independent, it's an arm of a train company. They actually run Blackfriars station.
I believe that it is a scandal that this service calls itself independent, but there is no right of appeal and it's run by one of the train operators. I believe that the penalty ticket scheme is a scam to generate extra profits for these companies.
A little tool to help you defeat the invisible men
I've added an IP address lookup tool. If you get an email or you have a stats counter on your blog, you can see who it is and where they came from using this. If you've got an email from someone, view the email. Click on File, then click on properties, then click on details. Now click on message source
You will see some text as follows :- X-Originating-IP: [184.108.40.206]
Where I've put 220.127.116.11, cut and paste this number into the IP lookup and hey presto, you know where the email came from.
If it says it's from your bank, but the IP address is Freds chipshop, you know it's a scam.