You question my authoritay?

Godfrey Bloom, Going Postal
“Rishi Sunak MP” by Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Govt is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

You know the game is afoot when the Prime Minister makes a sudden, last-minute, Friday evening, urgent announcement.

Surprisingly – perhaps – nowt to do with GP & FF, but on 1 March 2024, Sunak appeared before the cameras outside No. 10 Downing Street. As with the scamdemic and house arrests/lockdowns, the stage had been set to maximise fear levels and keep the public guessing as to what he was about to announce. As many had surmised, his emergency statement was on the topic of extremism. However, this speech could have been made during the day without all the intense build-up. But instead it was undertaken in a way to ensure the public believed the threat was greater than it actually is.

Don’t get me wrong, there is extremism in the UK and there are extremists that are extremely dangerous, but we already have adequate laws in place to deal with these people. The problem is that, very often, these laws are seldom – if ever -used.  But this hasn’t worried the Government to date. What spurred Sunak into action was the by-election that had occurred the night before.

The by-election had been won by an outsider – George Galloway. The establishment had been rocked – somebody from outside the uni-party had won an election. And by a landslide. This is a man who is anti-NATO, anti-EU and pro-Palestine. Whatever you think about Galloway, he says what he thinks and he rocks the boat. I’m no Galloway fan – as somebody on the left he was naturally in favour of house arrests/lockdowns during the scamdemic after all – but as long as what he says doesn’t incite violence, then we need more people like him to challenge the consensus view in Westminster.

However, for the unelected Sunak, this democratically won election was too much – vote outside the uni-party system and this equates to extremism. Sunak began his ‘Extremism’ speech by attacking Galloway.  Sunak accused Galloway of being a terrorist sympathiser and, perhaps even more ominously, of being part of a broader extremist attack on democracy itself — against which the government would now be “taking action”. Sunak then went on to rehearse a script that we’ve become accustomed to in recent months: conflating the mass pro-Palestine and pro-ceasefire demonstrations with violence, antisemitism and pro-terrorist apology — The intent is clear: to criminalise people’s right to protest — or even to vote for candidates who oppose the uniparty’s policies on key domestic and/or foreign policy issues. All in the name of the “fight against extremism” (Sunak mentioned the term 13 times throughout his speech). In this sense, Sunak’s speech heralds a dangerous turning point in the authoritarian and anti-democratic regression of British society — and Western societies more in general — which has been unfolding for various years now.

You may disagree with the pro-Palestinian demonstrations,  but it should be obvious to all, that criminalising protest or ‘taking action’ against democratically voted MPs is not the way forward.  Sunak’s, last-minute speech was a clear sign that the worried Government are in the process of changing something and this was relayed to the media over the weekend.

The definition of ‘extremism’ is to be broadened “amid concerns over attempts to undermine democracy through violence and intimidation”. Rishi Sunak has asked Michael Gove, the levelling up secretary, to update the government’s definition of extremism, which was first set out more than a decade ago. It defines extremism as “vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values” and is seen by the government as no longer being fit for purpose. A new definition, which is still being finalised, is expected to cover those whose actions more broadly “undermine” the country’s institutions or values. The first obvious red-flag is that Michael Gove is involved ! Apparently “vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values” is no longer adequate enough to label you as an extremist. The new laws will mean that by “undermining” the country’s institutions or values you could now land in jail…….. Shurely this is a slippery slope towards the abolition of fundamental freedoms, there being  no consensus or legal definition on what it even means to ‘undermine British values’.

In a free and democratic society with a plurality of opinions and beliefs, it is foolish and dangerous to separate ‘extremism’ from violence and terrorism. Some people think that gender critical views are ‘extreme’. I think decriminalising abortion to birth is ‘extreme’. Opposition politicians think the current government is ‘extreme’. Martin Luther King, William Wilberforce and the Suffragettes were all viewed at the time as ‘extremists’.  If ‘extremist’ views are illegal, then the person who defines ‘extremism’ has the power to curtail free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of the press and freedom of association. This is the path to authoritarianism.

It seems the establishment are more concerned about curtailing free speech than stopping violence. Take for example the recent case of Sam Melia. By all accounts, Melia has been imprisoned for two years for producing offensive stickers. The stickers ranged from ‘It’s OK to be white’ to ‘Why are Jews censoring free speech?’.  That really is what happened here: a man was jailed for his beliefs. The authorities are open about it. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), in its summary of the case, says that when Melia was arrested in April 2021, the cops ‘found in his wallet’ stickers that expressed ‘views of a nationalist nature’. The CPS also recounts that when police searched Melia’s home, they ‘discovered a book by Oswald Mosley’ and ‘a poster of Adolf Hitler’. In court, says the CPS, these artefacts were offered as ‘key signs of Melia’s ideology’.  There it is: Melia’s ideology. It wasn’t just his technical stirring up of racial hatred that landed him in the dock and later in a cell – it was also his ideological beliefs, his moral convictions. His nationalism, his rejection of white guilt, his reading material. You might hate the ideology Mr Melia subscribes to, but so what?  It’s ideology, ‘a system of ideas and ideals’, to give ideology its dictionary definition. No one – not a troublemaking Leninist, not a man-hating feminist and certainly not a Mosley-reading fascist – should ever be taken to court for what they think. That, surely, is the first principle of free speech.

And who else might be labelled as an extremist? During the scamdemic anti-lockdowners certainly were. As were anti-maskers and people against Covid vaccine mandates. Even people who just didn’t want to have the vaccine were called extremist. So it will come as no shock that mere hours after Sunak made his ‘Extremism’ speech the Times newspaper was labelling ‘antivaxxers’ as extremists. The paper had an exclusive interview with Andrew Bridgen’s wife who claims that her husband has become ‘radicalised’. In the article, it says the Bridgen’s marriage has been torn about by a “sect” that has “taken over” her husband.  In clear nudging language, it tries to convince readers that scepticism of the Covid vaccines equates to indoctrination and extremist ideology. In states that suppositions that  the vaccines are “defective” are conspiracy theories. Penny Mordaunt MP is quoted using similar language to Sunak saying  “I am going to call out, on every occasion, when he does things that I think are a danger to our democracy.”  Bridgen without doubt is the very definition of marmite : He called for everybody to get vaccinated and voted in the HoC for vaccine mandates. There is also the business of his financial troubles and being loaned millions of pounds by businessman, Jeremy Hosking. On the other hand, after his sudden switch in 2022, he was a lone voice in bringing important issues, such as excess deaths, to Parliament. Personally I remain sceptical of the man but welcome his contributions. Whatever his intentions, it looks like he is being set up to be the fall guy. Questioning house arrests/lockdowns, vaccines, and excess deaths will equate to extremism and the State will be able to put you in prison for doing so.  Fast forward to 2030 : Just look what the cult did to Bridgen and his poor family, they will say.

It is clear that broadening the definition of extremism is not compatible with free speech. The establishment was rocked by Galloway’s victory and hastily ramped up its authoritarianism rhetoric. It is quite possible that, very soon, questioning anything that is outside the narrative – including house arrests/lockdowns and vaccine mandates – will label one as an ‘extremist’ with dire consequences for those involved, as well as for freedom of speech……… Dark days lie ahead, Puffins.

© DJM 2024