Skip to main content

Limits to Protest

There has been an interesting debate about the question as to whether or not there are limits to protest.

I have always taken the view that there are limits to protest. The limits are determined by the consequences of protest. If someone dies or is seriously hurt as a result of the protest then the protest has gone too far. Similarly if there is serious vandalism then also the protest has gone too far.

Protest is always going to be a bit of a nuisance to someone. However, people do have the right to protest. I have been supportive (and remain supportive) of the democracy village outside parliament.

The question where there has been more of a debate over is whether the actions of protestors should lead to their actions being counter productive.

This goes to the centre of the vote in parliament about tuition fees. In fact there had been an amendment tabled to defer the decision. This amendment was not selected by The Speaker for a vote on it.

I would not be surprised if there were people who were of the view that the decision had to be taken and not deferred because in part of the uncontrolled nature of the protests and the need to move on.

My own view, as I have made clear, is that the proposals to have a progressive graduate contribution were a reasonable way forward. They may not be a perfect way forward. However, it benefits the less well off members of society and as such was one I felt I should support.

There was an argument that the decision on the amount of money that universities get should have been deferred. However, the Universities need to do their planning for people who start studying in September 2012 by March 2011. That is the main reason for making the quantum decision at such an early stage.

It remains that the decision as to what students pay when they graduate has not been made although general principles have been stated.

Returning to the issue of the limits of protest, however. It is quite clear that violent protests are likely to cause decisions that could be delayed to be taken earlier. I do not think that is an unreasonable position to take although there was in the end no vote taken on whether or not to delay the decision.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Standards Board and Ken Livingstone

The link is to the case where Ken Livingstone appealed the decision of the Adjudication Panel for England. The Standards Board and associated Adjudication Panel have done a lot of damage to democracy in the UK. The courts are, however, bringing them into more sanity. The point about Ken Livingstone's case is that it was high profile and he also could afford to appeal. The Standard Board has a problem in that those subject to its enquiries face substantial costs that they cannot claim back. This is an issue that needs further work. In essence the Judge found that what he said brought him into disrepute, but not the office of Mayor. We do need the machinery of the SBE and APE to concentrate on things that matter rather than people being rude to each other.

Problems with Outlook Express - emails lost dbx corruption

In the light of the enthusiasm shown for my post relating to the OCX control that must not be named (and probably Microsoft's most embarrassing error of recent years) I thought I would write someting about Outlook Express. Outlook Express is the email client that comes as part of windows. I use it myself, although I have my emails filtered through a spam filter of my own devising written in java. It takes email off a number of servers using POP3 (Post Office Protocol TCP Port 110) and sends it using SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol port 25). I have recently spent a few hours dealing with the problem that arises when .dbx files get corrupted during compacting. Outlook Express (OE) stores the emails (and other things) in files with the suffix .dbx. Each folder has its own .dbx file. They are stored in hidden directories. This makes it harder to deal with things when OE goes wrong. It is very important to back up your stored *.dbx files as otherwise if you have a disk cra

Statement re False Allegations Campaign

Many people will know that my family and I have been subject to a campaign of false allegations by Esther Baker for the past 4 1/2 years. Yesterday there was a court judgment Baker v Hemming [2019] EWHC 2950 (QB) which formally confirmed that the allegations were false. Esther Baker, who had brought a libel claim against me, dropped her defence of Truth to my counter-claim and was taken by the judge as no longer trying to prove her allegations. Due to Baker's various breaches of court rules and orders, she has been barred from further repeating her allegations even in the court proceedings. Further claim of mine in libel against Baker are ongoing. There is a good summary in the Daily Mail here . This demonstrates the challenge in fighting false allegations in today's Britain. A substantial campaign was built up to promote allegations which had no substance to them. Various Labour MPs and in