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May calls a snap election

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Prof Wind Up Merchant
1239483.  Mon Jun 12, 2017 2:28 pm Reply with quote

What a great idea to call a snap election. May lost the majority hence weakening her position on the Brexit negotiations. She was naive in thinking she would have a bigger majority.

I don't like her doing a deal with the DUP as that breaks the impartiality that the Tories must have in Northern Ireland, to restore Stormont. Doing a deal with the DUP puts that in jeopardy.

She must go for a Soft Brexit.

1239489.  Mon Jun 12, 2017 3:31 pm Reply with quote

Prof Wind Up Merchant wrote:

She must go.


(sorry, couldn't resist)

1239498.  Mon Jun 12, 2017 5:33 pm Reply with quote

A question mainly for older British readers.

The photograph reproduced below was taken in 1987, and has resurfaced on a well known social media site.

The bearded man in profile on the right is Jeremy Corbyn. Next to him, seemingly wearing a kaftan, is the late Bernie Grant. The woman dressed as Diana Ross is of course Diane Abbott. Is the man in the foreground Gordon Brown?

(Photograph the property of David Lammy MP)

1239500.  Mon Jun 12, 2017 5:59 pm Reply with quote

I think you'll find that's Tony Banks (another name I'm amazed my brain still retains!)


1239507.  Mon Jun 12, 2017 9:23 pm Reply with quote

I would say Banks as well, The only one missing from that motley crew is Livingstone.

In the end I could tolerate Banks for similar reasons to Cook, I used to think he was a weasel like the rest of those in the image - cant entirely remember what the exact detail of the cause, may have been something to do with the Mayor's role, but I decided that he was one of the very few conviction politicians. As opposed to the rest in that image who should have been convicted ;)

I'd guess the image came from a GLC event originally.

1239513.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 2:14 am Reply with quote

Tony Banks was one of those people whose views I disagreed with but whose integrity I respected. One incident exemplified this (which I'm also sadly pleased I still remember):

Back in 1991 channel 4 screened a TV series called "GBH". Written by Alan Bleasdale and staring Robert Lindsey and Michael Palin (amongst many others), it was a satire on the idea of a left-wing extremist group taking over Liverpool council and it was simply superb (there was a scandal around "Prime Suspect" beating it to the TV awards even though all the judges claimed they voted the other way, but I digress).

The first episode "sold a dummy" appearing to indicate that the whole series would just be a vicious attack on the labour Militant Tendency group and its leader Derek Hatton (a Liverpool councillor and political figure of the day). Tony Banks went into the Channel 4 "Right To reply" video booth and delivered a vicious attack on channel 4 for this blatently personal political piece, demanding that the series be removed immediately. Channel 4 duly screened the complaint.

A week later episode 2 made it clear that it was NOT a personal attack on either Hatton or Militant. A couple of hours after it was screened Tony Banks went back into that video booth and withdrew his complaint, saying he'd clearly got it wrong, had massively over-reacted and wanted to apologise to writer, cast & crew.

In my view that took integrity.


1239532.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:36 am Reply with quote

Getting back to the election, one big winner from Thursday night must be the Scottish Conservatives. For the last 20 years there have been fewer than 2 Conservative MPs elected to Westminster by the people of Scotland.

Now, with their 13 MPs, they hold significant power in a government that's struggling to make up a majority. They certainly outnumber the homophobic arse-stains in the DUP, something made even better by the fact that their leader is a lesbian.

Ruth Davidson has already made it clear that she is going to be representing the people of Scotland who overwhelmingly voted Remain and will be pressing for a much softer Brexit than was originally planned.

1239533.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:42 am Reply with quote

At least one good thing has come out of this election: next time 'round we should be seeing a lot less of UKIP on the TV.

TV companies are legally bound to be unbiased in their coverage of the election. One way they do this is by ensuring each party gets a fair share of coverage. AIUI they work out how much coverage to give each party based on their share of the vote in the last election.

Last time 'round, UKIP polled 12.7% of the vote. So, despite their lack of success in getting MPs elected, TV companies were obliged to stick them on screen more often than the LibDems, the SNP, or the Greens.

Last week, by contrast, UKIP manage to poll a mere 1.8% of the vote. So, next time there's an election, we should expect to see their ugly mugs on the TV about a quarter as often as the LibDems and roughly the same amount of time as the Greens.

1239548.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 11:25 am Reply with quote

PDR wrote:
I think you'll find that's Tony Banks

barbados wrote:
I would say Banks as well.

Thanks guys. Tony Banks is but a name to me, and I wouldn't have recognized him if he had walked into the room. Which he probably won't be doing now, because he died in 2006.

I'd guess the image came from a GLC event originally.

It wouldn't have been a GLC event, because the GLC was abolished in 1986. The room that they're in looks as if it might be the chamber of the House of Commons, although it must have been a photocall rather than an actual sitting because neither Mr Corbyn nor Mr Grant would have been allowed in for a sitting dressed as they are there.

Erskine May requires that gentlemen wear ties. Once in a while a backbench MP suggests that this rule is out of date, but successive Speakers have ruled that they are still required. MPs who are ordained ministers may wear a clerical collar in lieu of a tie, and a few black MPs (including Mr Grant, as it happens) have worn African-style robes without a tie. But in that photo he's wearing what is more or less a t-shirt, and I doubt that any Speaker would have stood for it.

Ms Abbott and Mr Grant came to Parliament for the first time in 1987, which may have been the reason for the photo. Mr Banks and Mr Corbyn appeared one election earlier in 1983, but as suggested the four were all veteran GLC socialists. You may well ask where Ken Livingstone was, since he does belong with those four and did come to Parliament for the first time in 1987. Perhaps it was the AGM of the Newt Fanciers Society that day.

1239549.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 11:29 am Reply with quote

Slight doffcock here, but Woodsman and I watched a couple of episodes on Acorn streaming of a series called "No Job for a Lady" in which Penelope Keith gets elected as a left-wing Labour MP. This series was made in 1989 and I'm assuming collapsed pretty quickly, as only one season is available on Acorn, but a Tory MP commented on the trousers-and-jacket she was wearing, saying that skirts were de rigeur. Anybody know if that's still the case? If it was ever the case>

1239553.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 11:48 am Reply with quote

It's certainly not the case now, because Theresa May often wears trousers in Parliament.

In fact, Erskine May is silent on the matter of women's attire. That gentlemen members wear jackets and ties, and do not wear military uniforms or medals, is all that it has to say on the matter of dress.

There are still men around who consider it improper for women to wear trousers. A UKIP-per with the surprisingly foreign name of Demetri Marchessini (he's half Italian and half Greek) said so as recently as 2013, and was taken sufficiently seriously that Farage found it necessary to state that an objection to trousers was not UKIP policy. (Daily Telegraph, 17 May 2013)

One could imagine an old school Tory MP - especially a caricature one created for a sitcom - making such a comment, but I can find no evidence for it ever having been a real rule.

On the other hand, trousers for women were not permitted on the floor of the US Senate until as late as 1993. Two female Senators - both Democrats - began to wear them regularly that year, and the Sergeant-at-Arms refused calls to throw them out until they came back properly dressed. The trousers ban was taken out of the rule book later that year, with President Clinton stating that he had no objection to the change.

Alexander Howard
1239568.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 3:11 pm Reply with quote

suze wrote:
On the other hand, trousers for women were not permitted on the floor of the US Senate until as late as 1993. Two female Senators - both Democrats - began to wear them regularly that year, and the Sergeant-at-Arms refused calls to throw them out until they came back properly dressed. The trousers ban was taken out of the rule book later that year, with President Clinton stating that he had no objection to the change.

It's a surprise to hear that Bill Clinton was in favour of women in trousers: it's known that whenever a woman in his office wore trousers, her asked her to take them off.

1239570.  Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:16 pm Reply with quote

Unfortunately, he never asked me ...

Actually, he probably wouldn't have had the opportunity even had I ever worked for him. I don't know that I could give any good reason for this, but I don't often wear smart pants. Jeans and shorts are both regular features of my attire when at leisure, but for work I practically always wear a skirt.

But Bill presumably got with the times, and saw no objection to allowing women to wear what a significant proportion of women preferred to wear. The Sergeant-at-Arms took a similar view, although her predecessor - a Republican appointee - apparently had warned female Senators not to go onto the floor "improperly dressed".

There are still a few schools in Britain which do not allow girls to wear trousers.

1239617.  Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:03 am Reply with quote

Same in Australia - my private church school was one, and I assume it and the one my sister changed to, both only have skirts as the winter uniform. And a dress for summer.

I see girls from a number of schools on the train, bus, etc, and not many pants among them. Don't know how I survived those years as I wouldn't survive now, with cold corridors/classrooms, etc, and knowing the condition I have now too, that makes me feel the cold more than the average person.

A few of our Government schools have begun to allow the girls to wear pants but not that many. And when they do allow it or change it, it's always a blow up in the media.

1239643.  Wed Jun 14, 2017 3:07 pm Reply with quote

Tim Farron quits as Lib Dem leader


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