Democracy matters

Today I turned up for a debate about the referendum for students that I had agreed to do. At my suggestion we decided to pay tribute to Jo Cox and to talk about why democracy matters, instead of rehearsing the arguments for and against EU membership.

I said:

Murder always brings out great grief. The needless brutality affects us all. The sense of loss is greater as a life is often cut short which would have many years to run.

The murder of someone on public service brings out a general public grief.

We mourn as a community anyone of our military killed on active service.
We mourn as a society any police man or woman murdered during the course of their duties.
And we mourn as democrats any MP killed when doing their work to represent us.

We mourn intensely and together, men and women of all views and parties, united in this collective grief.

When an MP is attacked it is important that we do not let these crimes create barriers between MPs and those we represent.

The job can only be done with access for constituents with problems and views. It needs regular contact between MP and constituents.

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59 Comments

  1. Posted June 17, 2016 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    Louise Mensch has written an excellent article condemning the politicisation of Jo Cox’s death.
    http://heatst.com/uk/jo-cox-mp-was-the-best-of-britain-politicising-her-death-is-the-worst/
    I also think James Delingpole, on Breitbart London, makes some very strong and relevant points.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      I can imagine an intern / civil servant, rushing into an MP’s / Minister’s office, saying “Jo Cox is dead”.

      The reply being, ” Who the **** is Jo Cox”; better see if we have got any of those “crocodile tear drops” left from Diana’s funeral.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        This tragedy is reflected in so many parts of our country in so many ways. People would be scared witless if they knew how many people are allowed back into society when they should be in secured facilities receiving help or prevention them from causing harm to others or themselves.

        Care in the community is stretched far beyond any reasonable persons meaning. Similarly people jailed who have committed serious personal violent crimes being let out far too early for society’s good. The liberal elite policies are as mad as those poor souls they let free.

        • Posted June 18, 2016 at 11:37 am | Permalink

          Indeed I suppose the state sector just think it is cheaper (and better for the staff) just to release these people, give then some drugs to self administer, and then let others pick up the bodies and the injured that are the direct result.

          • Posted June 19, 2016 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

            Going back into the seventies and eigthies, I remember the vociferous campaign by social workers and co. to bring in care in the community. The government listened and eventually gave way, even though it was going to cost more.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

      That would be the article headlined:

      “Project Grief: Remain’s Dirty Politicking Has Hit an All-Time Low”

      Well, we don’t know that.

      What we do know is that the government decided to hold a referendum ostensibly to let us, the citizens, consider and give our verdict on a particular question, but then rather than standing back and impartially presiding over a serious, careful and civilised public debate over the destiny of our country the government has deliberately made sure that would not, could not, happen.

      There’s a letter in the Telegraph today:

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/2016/06/16/letters-the-eu-will-take-britains-migrant-worries-seriously-afte/

      from opponents of the EU in five other countries which starts:

      “From many EU referendums we are familiar with the tactics the British people are currently experiencing.

      Whether the UK leaves the EU or remains is entirely for the British people to decide. But we know from our own experience that the EU system and the government apparatus will do everything possible to inject wild fear about the consequences of daring to oppose them.”

      One of the signatories is Patricia McKenna, whose 1995 complaint led the Irish Supreme Court to declare that it was unconstitutional for the Irish government to use public resources to campaign on either side in a referendum:

      https://nationalplatform.org/2013/01/12/irish-referendum-practice-from-mckenna-1995-to-mccrystal-2012-how-irish-governments-behaved-unconstitutionally-in-serving-the-eu-agenda/

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

      Of course the sentiments of your last sentence cannot be applied to unelected EU commissars.

      Guido Fawkes highlights the EU has done a secret deal with despots around the Horn of Africa in relation to immigration/asylum. Germany to lead on the issue and 28 ambassadors sworn to silence so the public does not find out! Come on JR, Cameron must have known this, what sort of person is he? Irrespective of he result next week is your party going to get rid of him? His behaviour s not befitting so one holding public office.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps we should hashtag this:

      #youaintnobrexiterbruv

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 10:13 am | Permalink

        “You ain’t no muslim bruv” satisfied David Cameron and the Left in getting Islam off the hook for general blame.

        Will Leave be afford the same favour if we say to the killer “You ain’t no Brexiter bruv” ?

        This is not a minor point.

        I believe this awful act was probably more to do with what the Left has done to a specific demographic rather than anything Nigel Farage has said.

        If you have to edit this then you have to ask why. I have already paid respect to Ms Cox in a previous post and am upset by her loss and the manner of it.

        • Posted June 18, 2016 at 10:44 am | Permalink

          I am alluding to the preferential treatment towards some groups over others – in this case the feelings of minorities over majorities. This is why we’re having the referendum in the first place.

          In particular ignoring the will of 75% of the population over mass migration is the biggest afront on democracy. It has uncovered the truth as regards to the anti-democracy in the EU.

          But this afront has (as Denis Cooper says later) created an edge over which less stable people can be tipped over. Who created that edge ?

          Let’s remember (I’m not talking about Ms Cox’s killer) that people were angry about what was being done to them long before there was anyone around to speak for them.

          It is the past and current actions of the Remainers rather than the words of the Leavers that is the real danger here.

  2. Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Of course it’s tragic John and we all mourn an untimely death.
    I see the Guardianistas are milking the death for all its worth.
    That odious Polly Tonbee should be ashamed of herself.
    I didn’t see the same expressions of blame when our soldiers were killed in Bliars pointless wars or the deaths due to Islamic terrorism brought about by these pointless interventions.
    The woman is a disgrace.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

      Without doubt there have been disappointing things said by some on the Left. Their combination of moral impregnability and factual irresponsibility is, as always, distasteful to decent people. Had it been a Conservative Brexit politician who was murdered, I wonder what pompous outrage would we have heard from Poison Pen Poll?

      How grateful we should be that neither victim nor perpetrator chanced to be a Muslim.

      As leader of the Remain campaign, Mr Cameron now has a duty to restore emotional and moral balance by repudiating unequivocally the unacceptable antics of some of his allies.

  3. Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    Indeed let us hope we can keep the dangers in society to a minimum for everyone, with sensible mental health policies, weapon controls, a sensible criminal justice system with real deterrents, quality control on immigrants, controls on incitement to violence (included those coming from religious groups), deporting criminals and keeping dangerous criminals likely the re-offend away from the public.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      I just heard Ed Miliband saying of MPs “too much hatred and not enough respect” “the vast majority are in it for the right reasons, they are not in it for the money or the fame” he said.

      Respect surely has to be earned. This is the man who incubated the politics of envy for political reasons at every turn. The man who even promised to pass laws to thieve off landlords in order to buy the votes off tenants with the landlords assets. I assume therefore that he does not include himself in this majority.

      If MPs want more respect they should keep to their word, not lie repeatedly to the public, not fiddle their expenses, not peddle the politics of envy and put in place systems & public services that actually work and actually benefit the public. Perhaps even change their salaries, tax laws and pension schemes to be rather more like the private sector ones that Brown and Osborne keep mugging.

      I estimate that only about 50% are in it for the right reasons and many of those are very misguided.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 7:36 am | Permalink

        I think both Merkel and Brown have had something to say about this.

        Well, who was it who decided that the rejected EU Constitution should be rejigged as a “Reform Treaty”, later renamed the Lisbon Treaty, and urged other EU leaders not to allow any referendums on it? And who was it who sneaked off to sign that treaty, and then declared that the previous pledge of a referendum no longer held?

        And who, having condemned that double dealing:

        “The final reason we must have a vote is trust. Gordon Brown talks about “new” politics. But there’s nothing “new” about breaking your promises to the British public. It’s classic Labour. And it is the cancer that is eating away at trust in politics. Small wonder that so many people don’t believe a word politicians ever say if they break their promises so casually.”

        later tried to justify his own abandonment of his “cast-iron guarantee” of a referendum by pretending that the treaty no longer existed?

        • Posted June 18, 2016 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

          Indeed.

  4. Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    It would be a fitting tribute to Jo to ensure that the democratic process continues uninterrupted with the holding of a civilised and thoroughly democratic referendum which is an example to the world.

    If it was up to me I would have a book of condolences in every polling station, for those to sign if they wish; this may be something that polling station staff would like to do on their own initiative, if it can be done without impeding the vote.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      Don’t give Cameron any more ideas on how to slope the pitch.

      The fitting tribute to democracy will the restoration of real UK democracy with a decisive Brexit vote.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

      The democratic process should of course be continuing but it should not be seen as a tribute to one individual. Well-informed, honest, grown-up debate, alongside consultation and free, uncorrupted voting should be the norm.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      Let’s not overdo the hagiography of Mrs. Cox. She clearly seems to have been a well-intentioned, hard-working, likable and talented lady. However, most of us here would find at least some of her and her husband’s political views naïve – or worse. She was close to the Browns. Her husband was apparently instrumental in attempts to politicise “Save the Children”. Her common touch did not inhibit her boating antics on the Thames the previous day, denigrating ordinary fishermen’s efforts to highlight the EU’s deleterious impact on their livelihoods.

      Most of all, her support for remain would have rendered Mrs Cox’s activism increasingly impotent. Even if access to MPs survives any review of their security, remaining in the EU will make such access pointless as Westminster continues its decline in relevance and power to parish-council status. MEPs are much more remote than MPs and have little connection with the large areas that they supposedly represent; in any case their ability to change much is negligible. The EU Commissioners and Eurocrats are loftily closeted in a charmed world of privilege, shielded from the people they rule by impenetrable walls of security and officialdom. The irony of this seems to have totally escaped notice by many of those who have been praising Mrs. Cox for her engagement with the ordinary person and her determination to use her position to change their lives for the better.

  5. Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    In truth, I am the only person in the UK prior to the demise of the Yorkshire MP who had never heard of her.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      C.H. No.

      Perhaps the Brexit campaign should be suspended for longer. I turned BBC news on for the weather 5 minutes ago to be told by the rather lovely business presenter that the stock market has recovered today now the Brexit campaign has been suspended.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

        stred:
        World Peace , a discontinuation of Climate Change, and the discovery of rice pudding mines in Shangri-La is dependent on the ever closer licking of Jean-Claude-Juncker’s posterior

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

      No, I had not noticed her either.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

      I too was unaware of Jo Cox prior to her horrendous demise. Sympathies and thoughts to those genuinely close to her and a plague on those seeking a Princess Diana moment

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 11:38 am | Permalink

        Exactly.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      I would imagine very few people had heard of her.

      Did I just bite?

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

      and the relevance of this comment is?

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 8:49 am | Permalink

        The degree of coverage, comment and grieving by the media and metropolitan remainers. If someone had shot John Redwood it would have been item number three subject on the national news and for one day only, with uncomlimentary reasons explaining why he deserved it really.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

        The fact is most people had never heard of Jo Cox irrespective of her work good or bad ( the plight of most politicians ). Regrettably.

        Now it seems, it is remarked by umpteen politicians of all colours that in just a 12 month Parliamentary period ( they get loads of holidays ) she has spent “a great length of time” in her northern Constituency and simultaneously they have become her best friends, bosom buddies, citing stories of considerable time periods when each of them individually and not mentioning the presence of any other MPs talked of this and that, bygone days and poetic visions of the future…covered every issue of international relationships, climate change, the Referendum, the validity of the Remain Campaign and how she was like a sister to them.And whilst she was so engaged they themselves were miles away in their own constituencies far way from London and her own in Yorkshire Constituency doing a dutiful job for their respective electorates.
        Many people have worked in environments of less than 650 as in Parliament..as little as 20 and left after 12 months not even quite sure of the boss’s surname and only making a couple of fairly close friends though never seeing them outside working time.
        It’s all terribly sickening and many British people should avoid seeing and listening on pain of severe vomiting the special recall of Parliament on Monday.

  6. Posted June 17, 2016 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    Yes, democracy really does matter.

    Reports in the newspapers are indicating that this poor woman had been the subject of numerous threats and that the Police had been “considering” providing her with some protection.

    If this turns out to be the case and there has been an prevarication on the part of the police before putting this in place, then heads should roll, starting with the Chief Constable.

    There have been incidents like this before : the stabbing of Stephen Timms immediately springs to mind. Fortunately, while very traumatic for Mr Timms, that incident did not end so tragically. It should, however, have provided ample warning to the West Yorkshire Police that a pre-arranged and publicised constituency surgery represents a higher risk to Mrs Cox than many other kinds of event she might have attended.

    I refuse to accept that despite all the whinging from the Police Federation about cuts, it could not have been possible for West Yorkshire Police to find a single, burly male police officer to escort Mrs Cox to and from her surgery and keep her safe. His mere presence would almost certainly have been enough to put off her cowardly attacker.

    It might now be necessary to offer this kind of support to all MPs who could then make a choice whether or not to accept it.

    Finally, it was a generous and correct gesture for the Conservative Party to undertake not to fight for the seat.

  7. Posted June 17, 2016 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    As far as I am aware, no-one has been charged in regard to the death of Ms Cox MP.
    There has been no formal official information that a murder, a manslaughter, or otherwise has taken place. Nor reasons, if any.
    A man, is in custody. I should not know that. The police “are not looking for anyone else”. I should know that. Nor his name, age,place of residence. But I do.

    In my opinion: Everyone associated with this case should be taken to an appropriate place for questioning, perhaps placed under arrest and maybe charged with some offence. However, I should not know if anyone has been so treated, or anything else about it until a Guilty verdict has been given. Afterwards I should not know anything of the neighbours, family associations, job associations etc.

    There is something greater than democracy which underpins democracy…Law… Without it our democracy in real terms is non-existent. “Law” in this case has not been questioned, charged and sent to court for judgement. I should not therefore comment on this issue further. But I can.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 7:14 am | Permalink

      Reporting of criminal cases is governed by the laws on contempt of court. It is free and open until a charge is imminent because legitimate public interest has a right to be satisfied.

      When reporters learn a charge is imminent they should exercise caution (though in the case in question, and in others before, I have seen some crassly prejudicial reporting and comments in the media).

      After a charge is laid nothing prejudicial to the judicial process may be published. Anything not prejudicial can be published. Decisions on which category a report might fall into are taken by editors on legal advice. If they get it wrong the penalties for contempt, including imprisonment, are available to the courts.

      The reason, obviously enough, is to ensure the defendant has a fair trial and the minds of the jury are unprejudiced by anything they may have read. This aim the law balances with the public right to be informed.

      If you are arguing for restrictions on free speech in matters of crime and justice, Mr Houston, I cannot follow you there.

  8. Posted June 17, 2016 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    On the greater question of Democracy.

    A revelation: but it should not have been so, not for the UK with its history of Commonwealth and Empire, is that democracy does not work. At least in some instances.
    In Northern Ireland, it was “discovered” by the British..yet again, that one-man-one- vote and Majority Democratic Rule sometimes inflicts a society known as the “Tyranny of the Majority”.
    Without going into boring details, a permanent majority in a democracy does not work.
    So, in some areas of Yorkshire, there has been Demographic Change ( Lefties with simplistic ideals take note ). “Diversity” as in Northern Ireland centuries ago created “Communities”. One “Community” became the majority.
    Time to think of Corbynista “Communities” and take stock of British experience throughout the world and on its own territory. Time to think of Security. Time to stop, now, namby-pamby daft games with people’s identities and lives as though playing some silly child’s game with boats and flags down by the riverside.

  9. Posted June 17, 2016 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    The death penalty ought to be restored for the murderers of police, military and elected politicians.

    These people are essential guardians of a free society.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

      Problem is, we can never restore the death penalty (even if 100% of the electorate voted for it and 100% of MPs & Lords backed it). It is a condition of EU membership that it is abolished.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      The death penalty should be restored for all act of pre meditated murder.
      Why is one life of more value than another.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Most of the elected politicians of late are actively involved in destroying a free society, restricting free speech by law and burying us in the anti-democratic EU.

      Rather far from essential guardians of it.

      I do not agree with capital punishment. For one thing our courts and police are far too incompetent or worse – as we saw with the Guildford Four, the Birmingham Six, Hillsborough and many other cases. Even if I did, I would not elevate police, the military and politicians above anyone else who was murdered.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      Nonsense.
      Death penalty for all murderers or none.

    • Posted June 17, 2016 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

      And for treason , maybe with an amnesty for those who come forward .

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

      I disagree. If the death-sentence is seen to be a deterent, it should be seen to be a deterent for every one of us.

  10. Posted June 17, 2016 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    The murder of Jo Cox is deeply shocking and a terrible tragedy for her husband and children. I applaud your determination not to allow this crime to inhibit the interaction between MPs and their constituents.

    Political discourse in the UK has veered towards angry, shouting, finger-jabbing rhetoric (not by our host), and this is reflected in the TV and print media, social media, blogs etc. MPs and media need to consider what kind of message they are sending out, and how it may impact on some, perhaps less stable, members of the public.

    Political arguments need to be won by measured and well-reasoned debate rather than just shouting down an opposing view. MPs have the opportunity to lead from the front on this by setting the tenor of debate in the House.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      The finger-jabbing rhetoric is always Remain towards Leave action.

      This killing probably has less to do with what Nigel Farage has said than it has with what the Left has done to a specific class. Anti-depressants, depression and care-in-the-community issues asides.

  11. Posted June 17, 2016 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    It has to said. As dreadfull as the event is, it really is time the media gave it a rest. I’ve returned from work 6pm and even the local tv in the Thames Valley managed find an angle. No doubt next week we will have to endure it again with the funeral or memorial service.

    She is being made out to some sort of saint, a remainer of course and much in favour of immigration. The Left and the remainers are milking it for all it is worth. Some commentators ought to be ashamed for exploiting it to their advantage.

    And I too had never heard of her.

  12. Posted June 17, 2016 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    Harman can’t help herself.

  13. Posted June 17, 2016 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    There is a point that needs to be made about the assassination of Jo Cox. It is especially important that we on the side of Brexit, to whom the sovereignty of our parliament is paramount, emphasise that this was a constitutional OUTRAGE.

    The appropriate punishment for the crime is a public hanging, pour encourager les autres. Let the law be so amended ready for any similar offence.

    It is also high time that we abolished diminished responsibility and insanity – temporary or otherwise – as reasons for a reduced sentence or a cushy number in a mental hospital. I don’t care if the offender doesn’t know the difference between right and wrong. WE know the difference between right and wrong, anf that’s what matters.

    There is also a need to deter threatening behaviour on line through social media. A threat to maim or murder a member of parliament – or anyone else for that matter – is a crime. Such crimes should be prosecuted.

  14. Posted June 17, 2016 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    Yes the news is milking the story,, politicians are milking the story. It is if they need a tragedy to build on their own reputation on ,but having said this we all know that anyway and can use other peoples suffering as a warning. We have hundreds of these mad, bad people on the earth: even those who profess to be high minded and sensible. I am glad I am alive and wish love and happiness to all, even those who scorn ,condescend, are puffed up and don’t know any other than collective jealousy and a particular mind set. If there is anything out there sitting in judgement , which I doubt, other than those instincts which are common to all in varying amounts of influence on the individual, I paradoxically pray that all find the inner love and sadness I have for all and the monstrous things they do. Raise your majestic self, absolute love.

  15. Posted June 17, 2016 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Even before this awful death, the Remain side, especially on the left, were only able to think in terms of any mention of immigration numbers as necessarily being racist or at least very bigoted. I do not think that is an exaggeration. It was and is an absurd piece of reasoning, if it is reasoning at all. Now, after this murder, that sentiment is on steroids. They are convinced that it is a natural consequence of raising the issue of immigration numbers. You only need to look at what they said today, and the nonsense that is flooding Twitter. The message from them is: thou shalt not mention immigration numbers and lack of control because look what happens if you do.

    What more needs to be said of the intellectual capabilities of such people, and with some of them, especially the Remain politicians, of their integrity, desperate to subtly exploit this situation.

    The loss of a person’s life should not be used in such a way.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      Calling someone a xenophobe for complaining about the numbers of migrants is like calling a drowning man a hydrophobe.

      They

      Do

      Not

      Get

      It

  16. Posted June 18, 2016 at 2:06 am | Permalink

    A very thoughtful piece in the Telegraph today, as you would expect from Charles Moore but the most interesting is from Matthew Parris, in the Times.

    Parris makes the point that there can be no Political point scoring from the death of Mrs Cox, no politicians can be responsible or contribute towards the actions of someone working alone who suffered from mental problems. The article is all the more powerful because Matthew Parris is not just an excellent Journalist but a Remain supporter as well.

    Unfortunately others have not been able to resist associating the Leave campaign with this tragic murder. By far the most tasteless I have read is an odious piece by Polly Toynbee in the Guardian. She clearly attempts to blame the murder on elements of the Vote Leave campaign.

    In such a close fought contest it is possible that an unprecedented event such as we have seen in W Yorkshire could, just possibly, influence the outcome.

    If this were to happen, it would be out of sentimental solidarity with Mrs Cox’s no-doubt sincerely held views amongst a small proportion of the electorate and certainly not as a result of politically-motivated utterances from the likes of Toynbee and the shadow Home Secretary, neither of which would be read by the vast majority of the electorate anyway.

    As far as Mrs Balls is concerned, those who aspire to high office really should no better than to stoop to this level.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink

      I actually disagree with Matthew Parris on this. It is politicians who have persisted with the policy of allowing and encouraging mass immigration against the clear wishes of the great majority of the citizens of this country, three out of four in many opinion polls. As I have said before my paramount reason for opposing this policy is that most of my fellow citizens do not want it. If they did want it then I might well continue to quietly argue against the wisdom of their preferred policy, but I would accept that it was the democratic will of the British people and seek to make the best of it; but they obviously don’t want it, rather it is being imposed upon them against their will. For me if anybody is looking for an affront to democracy then they can easily find it in the fact that for two decades our political establishment has not just dismissed the majority views of the British people on immigration as irrelevant but has actively tried to suppress them by blackguarding those who speak out; the party which promised to respect and implement known public opinion on this issue while in opposition has done not done so, and moreover it quite obviously has no intention of ever doing so, it is just more pretence. If it is really the case that somebody with mental health problems has now been tipped over the edge by this, which we don’t know at present and which is now a sub judice matter, then that should raise the question of who has created that edge.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 10:33 am | Permalink

        Very well put, Denis.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 11:45 am | Permalink

        Denis, I agree with you that it is wrong and undemocratic that our politicians have since the days of Enoch Powell been ignoring the expressed views of a large majority of the population on the subject of immigration.

        However, taking your argument to its ultimate conclusion, you are in effect saying that in every case where someone with mental problems commits a crime, particularly a murder, by definition someone else must always be to blame for pushing them over an edge.

        This cannot be right.

        Perhaps you would care to tell us who you believe is ultimately responsible for Peter Sutcliffe’s heinous crimes ?

        etc ed

        • Posted June 18, 2016 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

          My disagreement is with the assertion that “no politicians can be responsible or contribute towards the actions of someone working alone who suffered from mental problems”. If politicians act in a way which causes widespread anger, as they have done by pushing ahead with a policy of mass immigration in defiance of public opinion, then clearly that creates a chance that somewhere there will be somebody, possibly with mental problems or possibly not, whose anger becomes so great that it spills over into violence.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      Polly Toynbee- the Ena Sharples of Lbour journalism.

      • Posted June 18, 2016 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

        I had complete contempt for the, wrong on every issue, BBC favourite “thinker” Polly Toynbee even before this, but she is really dredging the depth of the sewers now.

    • Posted June 18, 2016 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      In the Money Week interview between Merryn Somerset Webb and Bernard Connolly back in March of this year, Connolly said EU membership leads to feelings of ultra nationalism (my paraphrasing).

  17. Posted June 18, 2016 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    I am very sad for Jo Cox’s family and close friends.

    Thank you John for being such a superb MP, I wish you were our local MP and we might be able to sort out some decade long problems that everyone else feels there is nothing they can do about. There’s loads that go wrong in local communities that never get dealt with and perhaps when we vote leave we can think about how we want to be governed in England as they are allowed in Scotland, Wales and N Ireland. The Lords isn’t fit for purpose and is filled by both parties with place people, if we have a second house maybe it should be elected and given a purpose that we all understand, there are three layers in the rest of the U.K.

    We also need to thank you for standing true to yourself and by that being true to what you believe in.

    As for Polly Toynbee she should be ashamed, specifically naming Farage, Johnson and Gove in her muddy little self serving article left a very bad taste in my mouth. If anyone showed us the mass movements and people fighting to get into the UK, problems housing them, threats from France it was Channel 4 news and the BBC both of which I watch night after night for months scaremongering. Individuals have opinions but the media transmits them and puts their spin on them to suit their own agenda from Benefits Britain to the Housewives of Cheshire they steer people’s options yet don’t want to take any responsibility.

    I was also shocked at the vile Left at their worst on Twitter pointing their poisoned little finger tips at Kate Hoey and others and effectively attempting to end democratic debate, shame on our schooling system that people aren’t taught to express themselves with politeness and reason and are just encouraged to down thumb ? And disrespect options they don’t share so they are hidden, left to come out in the most dangerous, hate filled of ways.

  18. Posted June 18, 2016 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    I’m not going to criticise her husband in what must be agonising grief, but I don’t think the Guardian should have agreed to publish this:

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/jun/17/mainstream-politicians-clueless-on-how-to-deal-with-migration-debate-says-jo-coxs-husband?CMP=share_btn_tw

    “Mainstream politicians ‘clueless on migration debate’, says Jo Cox’s husband”

    They are, but not in the way that he and the Guardian believe.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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