The Truth

Every MP to receive a copy of Orwell's "Nineteen Eighty-Four" .........

Stewart Cowan, 4/11/08

The Libertarian Party UK 1984 campaign is this week delivering a copy of George Orwell's prophetic novel to every Member of Parliament. The books will be inscribed with the words, 'This book was a warning, not a blueprint' and will arrive at Parliament on or before November 5th - a date of well known historical significance for that building.

The UK Libertarian Party leader, Ian Parker-Joseph, explained, "As the people of Britain become ever more spied upon and ever more heavily taxed, as the government attempts to control how much we should smoke, eat and drink, as the state legislates to regulate ever more the minutiae of our lives, the Libertarian Party want to remind people that we have the power, and that our elected representatives work for us."

The first MP to receive his copy was Tom Harris, Labour MP for Glasgow South and recently relieved of his ministerial position at the Department for Transport.

Mr Harris penned a blog entry entitled, "An Orwellian nightmare? Oh, wake up!" in which he accused those worried about the creeping power of the state in our everyday lives of being "strange" and "paranoid".

Practically every one of the many commentators disagreed with Mr Harris and there were many eloquent replies, so his next blog entry was, "Poking that sleeping dog with a stick," in which he states:

"Although I disagree with those who say weíre slipping towards a police state (just about everyone who commented on that post), Iím at least aware of the concerns that lead people to have such fears."

This post attracted another deluge of comments and Mr Harris promised: "UPDATE at 7.40 pm: Iím in the process of drafting one final post on this subject, responding to more of the arguments made here today."

I was getting excited. I reckoned that after 300 comments, almost all trying to convince the MP of our concerns, that he would concede that there were problems with civil liberties.

I hereby reproduce that entire promised post "responding to more of the arguments" that he had been "in the process of drafting."

Wait for it:

"1984: my final word - I think weíre all going to have to agree to disagree on this one, donít you think?"

Thank you, Mr Harris. Labour still listening, eh?

Some comments sounded threatening, which irked Mr Harris. Old Holborn chipped in with this:

"Again, I state, there are but 646 of you. Donít you EVER forget it, because it wasnít that long ago that we really did hang politicians. And Ceausescu moments will always happen."

"And last but not least, people should not be afraid of their governments (and they are), governments should be afraid of their people (and you will be)."

"Just as you know where we live, we know where you live."

To which Harris replied:

"How pompous can any individual actually get? So, are you threatening democratically-elected politicians with murder just because we donít do what you and your small band of fanatics in the Libertarian Party want us to do?"

To be fair, hanging is a traditional reward for treason.

As for pomposity, to totally disregard the opinions of about 98% of the people who commented on his blog is really, really pompous.

There are millions of people who are no longer afraid, because when you have nothing more to lose, or are threatened with losing what little you have - the worm turns and politicians should start to worry as Old Holborn and others have warned, because Ceausescu moments will always happen.

Comments can be left on my blog.