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Saturday, April 18, 2009 

Weekend links.

(I forgot to mention, but yesterday's post was, believe it or not, this blog's 2,000th. I'm a very, very sad man.)

Another weekend, and another really bad one for the Labour party. Not that the leadership or the Blairites will care one jot about Alice Mahon resigning from the party she's been a member of for 50 years, but it might just help jolt the consciences of some that remain members themselves of just how far the modern party has deviated from its origins. If that doesn't, perhaps the almost certain selection of Georgina Gould, daughter of Lord Gould and all of 22 years of age as the Labour candidate for the safe seat of Erith and Thamesmead, where there have been continual accusations of foul play will. It's quite clear what the remaining Blairites are intent on doing: rebuilding the party entirely in their image. As the old lefties of the Campaign group gradually give up their seats or retire, in will come the safe, new school of right-on dead centrists, without even the slightest interest in the party's history or what it once stood for. With it will of course also come the complete removal of the already minimal differences with the Conservative party, except for cosmetic ones, and the lack of choice between the two will even further diminish democracy as a whole. That, it seems, will be New Labour's true legacy. David Semple and Bob Piper expand on both the latter and the former.

Elsewhere, the Torygraph has a profile of Guido Fawkes/Paul Staines which the man himself has called a hatchet job, which more or less means that everything in it is factually correct, and therefore well worth a browse, Flying Rodent looks at Staines also puffing himself up in the Times, while Paul Linford has an excellent all round post on "Smeargate", as does Dave Osler. Dave Cole covers the Derek Draper side of things additionally. Other blog posts worth browsing are Neil Robertson's take on the torture memos, the Heresiarch on the sad death of Marilyn Chambers, and John B taking on a CiF commenter's more out there views on how Labour has restricted civil liberties.

In the papers, "Smeargate" still dominates, with Matthew Parris, Peter Oborne, Michael Portillo, Geoffrey Wheatcroft and John Harris all following it up in various ways, while Shami Chakrabarti and the Indie's leader column focus more on the aftermath of Damian Green predictably not being charged with any offence, with Tom Freeman also providing something of a riposte to the Indie leader. Other newspaper comment comes from Robert Fisk, on the morphing of the Taliban into al-Qaida, Christina Patterson on getting old, Mark Lawson on those vile grassing up posters, Paul Kingsnorth on the downfall of Englishness, Phillipe Sands on the torture memos, and Hassan Juma'a rejoicing at the coming end of the occupation of Basra.

As for worst tabloid article, we have a straight fight between the two usual contenders, Amanda Platell and Lorraine Kelly. Such a straight fight in fact that we'll mark it up as a draw. Platell takes first honours, hilariously declaring that Brown's attack dogs hate women, when anyone reading her columns will quickly notice that Platell herself also appears to loathe her sisters, adding to the humour by further remarking on how "honourable" Nadine Dorries is, whilst Lorraine Kelly, equally without the slightest self-awareness, asks in the Sun why it took 96 people to die before football fans were treated with respect. They didn't of course instantly get respect: they first had to be smeared by Kelly's newspaper and accused of urinating on police officers and picking the pockets of the dead before that happened. Still, why bring up unfortunate occurrences like that when there's people you can suck up to 20 years later?

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I look forward to the day Paul Kingsnorth manages to get a second topic to add to his habitual refrain about 'Englishness'. I swear to god if I ever meet him, I'm going to shove Benedict Anderson's book up his arse.

Thankyou for the link and congratulations on reaching 'Post 2K'. I'm a bit behind you, I'm afraid, but I'll catch up :)

xD.

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