The great Frank Zappa once said that the only problem with music was musicians and I tend to feel that way about national politics, especially in the run up to any elections.
With votes to be won every second of screen time is an opportunity to politicise and evangelisize. Sod the issues of the day and the people affected by it, feign outrage but stay on message no matter what the question is: “Well let me be perfectly clear…”, “Well we in the Liberal Democrats have…”, “Well when we have our referendum…” “Well as we have been saying since Brexit…”
Thursday’s Question Time is supposed to deal with the pressing matters of the day yet on April 29, Daisy Cooper managed to get the words Liberal and Democrat into every comment she made during the hour.
Nothing is more important and nothing is too tacky – not even Kier Starmer getting photographed with a roll of wallpaper in John Lewis, although I did enjoy watching him getting a tongue lashing before being thrown out of a pub earlier in the week, even if the sight of the landlord being physically restrained in his own premises by the Labour leader’s minder was disturbing.
And speaking of wallpaper… people are still stuck in fire trap flats four years after Grenfell, children are living in poverty and the biggest noise the opposition makes is about Boris’ decorating arrangements?
How can any of them think about being in power when they can’t even provide an effective opposition?
A Metropolitan Police officer was sacked on Thursday after a disciplinary hearing heard that he had struck a vulnerable and distressed teenage girl at least 30 times with his baton after she had flagged down his car in east London.
The details of what happened on May 8, 2019 are utterly shocking and have stayed with me for days.
The 17-year old teenager, who has learning difficulties, ran off during an escorted walk. A concerned member of the public called police when he saw near close to a main road, but the girl actually flagged down a police car herself.
She told officers that she was a vulnerable minor with mental health problems and agreed to get into the car but then got out at which point for some reason, the officer tried to handcuff her.
And then things really escalated.
When he couldn’t get the handcuffs on the young girl, who had actually flagged him down asking for help, the officer sprayed her in the face with CS spray before striking her several times with his baton as if she was a violent criminal.
Could it get any worse? Well actually, yes it could. Another unit turned up and a second officer immediately Tasered the innocent teen before she was hit again with the baton, handcuffed and put into a police van.
If it wasn’t a matter of public record now I would have a hard time believing it. This is Britain afterall.
Oh, did I mention the girl is black? No?
It doesn’t matter through because the disciplinary panel ruled that there was no indication that race was a factor in this utterly disgusting series of events.
Well if they say so it must be true… I suppose.
So how far would this now former police officer have had to go for his actions to be seen as criminal? Because the Met has said it was completely inappropriate and the IOPC commented that the force used would be shocking to most people.
The term gross misconduct obviously has many levels in the Met.
Stupid TV quiz answer of the week:
Q: In the 19th century, “Cottonopolis” was the nickname for which town in the north west of England?