Saturday, April 08, 2017

Quote of the day 8th April 2017

"I’ve known Ken Livingstone for many years. We agree on very little but I’ve always liked him, always enjoyed talking to him. He was a good colleague on LBC for many years. But he really has gone off the rails on anti-semitism.

It’s as if he can’t help himself. Why is no one advising him to stop doing interviews which inevitably make things worse?

Why didn’t Labour’s disciplinary panel make it a condition of his rather too lenient suspension that he mustn’t do any more interviews on the subject?

Unfortunately Ken has developed a form of Tourettes on this issue and he simply cannot resist mentioning the word Hitler. In a 13 minute interview with me on Wednesday afternoon he mentioned Hitler twelve times. I know, because I could see people on Twitter counting the mentions as the interview progressed. Not a good place to be."

(Radio presenter Iain Dale on Ken Livingston, Diary post yesterday).


Anonymous said...

That's the problem with Ken, Jeremy and Nigel they will answer a question and tell you what they think, rather than the bland disingenuous crap most politicians speak.

Chris Whiteside said...

The only part of that statement which bears any resemblance to reality is the first of the three adjectives which you applied to the output of "most politicians."

Yes I would agree that Ken Livingston, Jeremy Corbyn and Nigel Farage are less bland in their utterances than most people involved in politics. So I'll give you that one.

I would not agree that, taken as a group, these three and others like them are less disingenuous in their utterances than most politicians - rather the reverse.

And as for your third adjective - well, just as a broken clock is right twice a day even the most deluded person gets some things right, and so do these three. Overall however the amount of nonsense, distortion, and cloud-cuckoo-land fantasy which Messrs Livingston, Corbyn and Farage can fit into a five minute speech is greater than more mainstream politician produce in a year.

Anonymous said...

In a 'free' country they can say what they want, can't they?
You may not agree with Messrs Livingston, Corbyn or Farage, but at least they can be removed by the electorate if they don't like what they say. Dangerous individuals like your former glorious leader Lord Michael Howard can not. I know what system I prefer.

Chris Whiteside said...

I don't challenge the right of any of them to free speech, I am simply using my own right of free speech to disagree with them.

And removed from what?

Ken Livingston and Michael Howard are both newsworthy because of positions they were previously elected to but from which they have already been removed a decade or so ago.

Neither can be removed from being a FORMER Mayor of London or a former leader of the Conservative party respectively, although the electorate removed Ken as Mayor of London and effectively removed Michael Howard as party leader by not electing the Conservatives in 2005 (since October 1974 the Conservative party has invariably changed leaders after a defeat.)

Jeremy Corbyn could be removed as MP for Islington North by the electorate of that constituency and as Labour leader by the Labour membership though there are a lot of Labour members who would like to remove him but cannot. However, even after he stands down he will have news value as a former Labour leader in exactly the same way that Michael Howard still has as a former Tory one.

How many times has Nigel Farage resigned as leader of UKIP and then taken the job again? At least three times, I think. Not sure I'd hold him up as an example of someone who could easily be removed. And certainly not from having the ear of the media.

If your issue is with the House of Lords, I stood on a manifesto in 2010 which suggested replacing it with an elected second chamber and supported that as proposal in the coalition agreement. It was killed by an unholy alliance between the Labour party and a group of rebel Tory backbenchers.

I wrote an article on this blog in August last year explaining why I still support the replacement of the House of Lords with an elected second chamber which you can read at

Anonymous said...

It's not me you need to convince.

Chris Whiteside said...

Convince of what? If you are referring to the lack of accountability of the House of Lords (assuming that's the same "Anonymous" - you really should sign your name or use some consistent nom-de-plume if you are trying to have an intelligent conversation of any length), I nearly said the same thing to you.