Friday, 23 December 2016

Impress and the New Blackshirts

In a couple of weeks, with a Parliamentary recess for Christmas reducing the risk of awkward questions being asked, the Culture Secretary will decide whether or not to "activate" Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act. Activation will mean that any newspaper that fails to sign up to the privately owned, state approved press regulator "Impress" will have to pay the legal costs of anyone who sues that newspaper for libel, even if the newspaper wins the libel case in court. In other words, the newspaper will automatically lose (in financial terms) every libel case, no matter how undeserving, that is bought against it.

The vast majority of British newspapers, national and local, want nothing to do with a state regulator. Impress isn't a body owned by the state, however: the state merely "approves" it. Impress is funded and thereby owned by the Formula One Tycoon Max Mosley, son of Oswald Mosley, the one time leader of the British Union of Fascists, who was imprisoned during World War Two for his Nazi sympathies. The then Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, was persuaded by cabinet colleagues not to have Mosley senior prosecuted for treason, which could (and arguably should) have led to his hanging. When the war ended, the freed Oswald Mosley went back to his Jew baiting habits and continued business as usual as leader of the BUF. As a young man, Max Mosley attended BUF rallies in Jewish areas of London and was arrested for assaulting people for being Jewish. Oswald Mosley was very wealthy and was able to pull strings to get Max released into his custody, avoiding prosecution and probable jail for assault and affray. Impress is a tool crafted by a man with a history of using his fists to express his (racist) opinions.

In a democracy, members of an official regulator are normally expected to be impartial, but Max Mosley's Impress is stuffed with people who openly express a hatred of the press in general or even specific newspapers, such as the Daily Mail. (Which coincidentally campaigned with some success to bring the racist killers of Stephen Lawrence to justice.) Oswald Mosley had the Blackshirts, Max Mosley has the code committee of Impress. These people are there to destroy newspapers, pure and simple. They are the now elderly Max Mosley's fists.

Some people will foolishly support Impress because they hate the Daily Mail (or the Telegraph, Sun etc.) and hope that Impress will destroy it. Impress will almost certainly oblige, given the chance, but it won't stop there. As a fascist, Mosley has as much reason to hate The Guardian as he does The Mail and The Guardian is probably more vulnerable financially than The Mail. Extreme left wing communitarian organisations such as Common Purpose will support Impress because there are parts of the socialist agenda which national socialists share. They do not share The Guardian's centre left agenda!

In particular it should be noted by all, that Section 40 is not designed to destroy only pro Brexit newspapers like the Daily Mail: it is designed to destroy newspapers in general, including pro Remain ones like The Guardian and The Financial Times.

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