Refuse to be silenced.
The much trailed death of press freedom has arrived with the publication of the Royal Charter on the Press, the text of which can be found at the Order Order site.
Like the Spectator magazine and many blogs, this publication although not part of the Dead Tree Press re-iterates it’s previous position that:
“This blog will NOT register with any Leveson ‘Recognition Agency’ or any similar press licensing or censorship entity, this blog which although it mostly covers UK issues, is published outside the United Kingdom. It is the job of editors, not politicians to edit publications.
This is a regressive policy and to look to who will benefit from it, look to its funders and cheerleaders, a motley collection of sleazy celebs, authoritarian left-wingers and the super rich. It certainly will not benefit such things as holding the government to account or speaking out against injustice or voicing an opinion.”
The blogger Raedwald voiced what many are thinking when he said:
MPs today can undertake to cheat, steal, lie, defraud the taxpayer and sink deeper into the mire of odious crookery safe from the risk of exposure in a compliant Press; yes, MPs have succeeded in manipulating the Privy Council process to grant themselves a Troughers’ Charter. In a shameless move of unadulterated self-interest disguised only thinly by a pretence at defending the ‘rights’ of a group of useful idiots – actors, C-list luvvies, soccer players – MPs are finally getting payback from their savage exposure by the UK Press as a Rotten Parliament.
Well, here’s news for all of you foetid, noisome excrescences polluting the green benches of our Parliament; you won’t get away with it. You won’t win. There are enough of us, including printed publications, blogs, broadcasts and other media, with circulations and readerships from a few dozen to many thousands, to continue to expose your filth. We will not be silenced. You have been warned.”
(apologies to Raedwald for lifting the whole piece from his site, but what was said was so brilliantly accurate that an excerpt just would not do)
I write this piece with an air of sadness as it is, I believe, the first time in my life I have actively defied a direct commandment from a Royal Commission and by extension my Monarch like this.
Those in charge of administering the new Press Censorship rules, because that is what they are, will get nasty, will bring the full weight of the law down on the heads of the refuseniks and will seek to discredit and exclude those publications that do not cooperate with the censor. However, refuse we must, not just for our own sakes, but for the sake of those generations yet to be born.
300 years of press freedom in all its glory and dishonour, achievement and failure must not be killed off by a bunch of Leftist politicians and activists.
I’ll leave you with an inspiring speech from that writer who really is a ‘man for all seasons’, William Shakespeare from the play Henry V Act III published in 1598 but still very relevant today. This is a fight, and a fight that those who believe in freedom of speech must win.
“Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead.
In peace there’s nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility:
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger;
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Disguise fair nature with hard-favour’d rage;
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect;
Let pry through the portage of the head
Like the brass cannon; let the brow o’erwhelm it
As fearfully as doth a galled rock
O’erhang and jutty his confounded base,
Swill’d with the wild and wasteful ocean.
Now set the teeth and stretch the nostril wide,
Hold hard the breath and bend up every spirit
To his full height. On, on, you noblest English.
Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof!
Fathers that, like so many Alexanders,
Have in these parts from morn till even fought
And sheathed their swords for lack of argument:
Dishonour not your mothers; now attest
That those whom you call’d fathers did beget you.
Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
And teach them how to war. And you, good yeoman,
Whose limbs were made in England, show us here
The mettle of your pasture; let us swear
That you are worth your breeding; which I doubt not;
For there is none of you so mean and base,
That hath not noble lustre in your eyes.
I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
Straining upon the start. The game’s afoot:
Follow your spirit, and upon this charge
Cry ‘God for Harry, England, and Saint George”
Royal Charter text
The Raedwald comment on press freedom
On Leveson from this site
The Spectator magazines statement on press censorship