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Archive for April 12th, 2010

Tonight I am talking to Tom Harris who for some years now has been the Labour MP for Glasgow South and is standing for re-election on the 6th May. Tom is a well regarded blogger with a taste for the direct, sardonic and serious… as with my other podcasts in the 20 minutes with series… tonight is not about pushing policies but looking at the human side of politics.

We talk about twitter, the value of blogs in politics, rushing legislation through Parliament in ‘wash up’, Votes at 16, hung parliaments, why Tom Harris went into politics and his enthusiasm for the years ahead, the issue of whether Scots MPs should vote on purely Scots matters and even find time to discuss independence for Scotland – briefly.  It is fair to say that the series  title of 20 minutes should, as last night, be changed to be 30 minutes with….

Tom Harris blog

Listen to the podcast

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Other Podcasts in the “20 Minutes with series…”

Iain Dale, Tory political blogger and commentator

Old Holborn, Emily Nomates from GuyNews, Carl Gardner on The Queen’s Powers, Tom Williams to come this week and more next week and the week after…

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Great British Leaders: An exposition

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InsiteLaw newswire 3 put now…

The latest edition of the InsiteLaw newswire is now available for download here

The first of my political podcast series 20 Minutes with Iain Dale is below.

Tonight I record “20 minutes with Tom Harris MP”

up later….

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The news at the weekend that British national atheist Professor Richard Dawkin is planning to arrest the Pope caught my attention. I commented on this in my weekly ‘Postcard’ yesterday.

What bloggers need to know about defamation

A useful article: “This is a guest post by barrister James Tumbridge (pic right) following a report by Iain Dale highlighting the difficulties which Labour blogger Alex Hilton (pic left) faces. It is a cautionary tale for us all…..”

The election campaign is under way and is settling in to be unpleasant and dirty. Pundit and commentator  Mark Pack had this wonderful extract from the Labour Manifesto from 2005.  It needs no further comment.

Plan to end ‘gold digger’ divorces

The Times reports: “ONE of Britain’s leading family lawyers, Baroness Deech, says that assets built up before a marriage should be excluded from divorce settlements. Deech, the chairwoman of the Bar Standards Board, said the country should adopt European-style divorce laws to bring an end to bitter and expensive legal battles and to deter “gold diggers” from marrying for money. Under the proposed overhaul, only assets — including cash and property —acquired during the marriage would be subject to the divorce settlement. Individually owned or inherited assets would be protected.”

While David Cameron is proposing to strengthen the family with a £150 tax bonus and they say that Labour makes it more profitable to get divorced, Family lawyers will, possibly, be perturbed by Baroness Deech’s latest cunning plan. I remain of the view, from a secularist stance, that the State shouldn’t be involved in marital arrangements between consenting adults and certainly we should not have to have judges being involved in dissolving such relationships.  I can see absolutely no sensible reason why two adults cannot make whatever arrangements appeal to them without interference.  If they have children, it is not unreasonable that the judiciary should ensure that the interests of the children are protected.  But…there we are…as I have said on many occasions, I am not a family lawyer.  I specialise in Contract and Contract law is more than capable of addressing disputes between individuals at to what they have agreed.  It matters not what I think … the State will go on interfering for the forseeable future.

Illegal migrant found guilty of conning law chief Baroness Scotland over job

Baroness Scotland, the attorney-general, has been vindicated by a jury who convicted her cleaner last week of fraud.  I am not sure if we have the answer yet to the perfectly reasonable question put by commenters if Baroness Scotland paid Tax and NI on her cleaner’s wages. This is a matter between her and HM Revenue & Customs and they, no doubt, are on top of the matter?. The Times has the story.

Some people are never satisfied.  The jury has found the cleaner guilty.  the ravening horde on The Times Comments section are, however, not satisfied.

A selection of negative comments for your delectation and delight…

john papi wrote:
Thank you Moya Ashfield. They should hang the jury!!
S de Wolfe wrote:
‘Baroness Scotland of Asthal’….!!! sorry, but that’s too ridiculous. The rest is irrelevant.

I suspect that S de Wolfe won’t be giving up the day job to become a stand up comedian.
Richard Prior wrote:
One person’s word against another. Is this justice. Socialist justice maybe.
And finally… a bit of that very quiet, but determined, Tory… Iain Duncan Smith…who should never be underestimated


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