I saw a video on the BBC news website yesterday that kept me tossing and turning most of the night. It’s a piece about army intelligence officer, Brian Gemmell, who was gathering information on loyalists in Northern Ireland during the troubles in the 1970s, when he stumbled across evidence of child abuse at Kincora Boy’s Home in east Belfast.
‘ A former army intelligence officer has said he was ordered to stop investigating allegations of child sexual abuse at a boys’ home in the 1970s.
Brian Gemmell said a senior MI5 officer told him to stop looking into claims of abuse at Kincora Boys’ Home in east Belfast.
He said he presented a report on the allegations to the officer in 1975.
In 1981, three senior care staff at the home were jailed for abusing 11 boys.
It has been claimed that people of the “highest profile” were connected to abuse at the home .’
Here’s a video not many people have watched, or are ever likely to watch. It’s a 40 min speech given by barrister Michael Shrimpton at the Britain on the Brink conference in Winchester on 22 September 2007.
What was the Britain on the Brink Conference you might ask? Well, according to the YouTube blurb is was:
A one day Conference by and for people of all parties and of none.
Hardly the kind of catch line that’s likely to attract many YouTube hits you might think. And you know what? … It hasn’t!
In the First Amendment, the Founding Fathers gave the free press the protection it must have to fulfil its essential role in our democracy. The press was to serve the governed, not the governors. The Government’s power to censor the press was abolished so that the press would remain forever free to censure the Government. The press was protected so that it could bare the secrets of government and inform the people.
Only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government. And paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people and sending them off to distant lands to die of foreign fevers and foreign shot and shell.*”
So it’s a bit of a surprise to discover those words were the rulings of a Supreme Court Judge, Justice Hugo Black, in the landmark decision in June 1971 protecting the right of the press to publish government secrets in the Pentagon Papers leaked by the whistleblowerDaniel Ellsberg.
What is it about the music used in this clip, Title Music from A Clockwork Orange by Walter (now Wendy) Carlos, that makes so many companies want to claim the copyright?
If ever there was an example of fair use under copyright legislation surely this must be it! The music has so many resonances with the subject matter and is so obviously being used for the purposes of criticism, research, teaching, historical archiving and scholarship.
Just two and a half weeks after energy industry lobbyists, Energy UK, threatened higher bills and power cuts and just three days after the National Grid joined forces with warnings of winter blackouts if investment isn’t increased, SSE is the first of the Big Six to puts the threats into action: hiking dual fuel bills a whopping 8.2% and slashing all investment in new power plants until after the next election.
Blaming government social and environmental levies for a third of the price hike, SSE‘s chief executive, Alistair Phillips-Davies, told The Telegraph today that energy bills will keep on rising for the next decade, but would fall by £110 overnight if the levies were axed. Blaming the freeze in new investment on the “acute political uncertainty” around Labour’s threat to the Big Six‘s power, Phillips-Davies seems to be making us an offer we can’t refuse in a low tone of voice: accept the deal the Big Six are offering or we’ll have to punch your lights out! Continue reading SSE marks up their expenses by 50% – and they don’t call that profit!→