Ken Livingstone, not fit for Mayor


by Rumbold
23rd August, 2007 at 12:49 pm    

As Boris Johnson has been criticised for his comments in the past, let us look back at some of Red Ken’s anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, homophobic, racist and misogynistic moments.

When questioned by an Evening Standard journalist on how a party went, cuddly Ken replied:

What did you do before? Were you a German war criminal?” Having been informed by the journalist that this was offensive because he was Jewish, Ken felt compelled to say that “ah right, well you might be [Jewish], but actually you are just like a concentration camp guard, you are just doing it because you are paid to, aren’t you?

Having not insulted Jews for a few weeks, Livingstone decided to adapt the old racist cry of go back where you came from if you don’t like it here, Jewish brothers David and Simon Reuben were told to “go back to Iran and try it under the ayatollahs.”

Even more despicable has been his repeated hostile behaviour towards homosexuals.

The Mayor of Moscow, Yuri Luzhkov, has denounced same-sex relationships and gay pride events as “satanic”, “unnatural”, “deviations”, “blasphemy” and “deadly moral poison.”

In February 2006, Grand Mufti Talgat Tadzhuddin was quoted as saying about Moscow gay pride marchers, “if they come out on to the streets anyway they should be flogged. Any normal person would do that – Muslims and Orthodox Christians alike…”

The charming mayor of Moscow was subsequently invited to London. Livingstone did eventually condemn his anti-gay stance, but felt moved to point out that Peter Tatchell was conducting “an Islamophobic campaign” for pointing out that the Grand Mufti urged violence against gays. Thus, people who argue that gays should not be flogged for being gay are now right-wing fascists; welcome to Livingstone’s world.

Livingstone was one of the pioneers of various weird ideas (London as a nuclear-free zone), and pushed for people to be punished for making offensive remarks, which is why his offensive remarks matter so much.

I could bring up Livingstone’s grovelling before Irish terrorists in the 1980s, or his support for dictators in Latin America, or his backing of the authoritarian Hugo Chavez. But I will leave you with the memory of his staunch backing for, and entertaining of, Yusuf al-Qaradawi. Dr. Qaradawi is “the chief scholar of the website IslamOnline, which endorses the execution of homosexuals – who it describes as “sick perverted and abonimable”; and which blames rape victims who dress “immodestly” for sex attacks, and outlines the conditions under which a husband can beat his wife.”

Qaradawi He also supports the murder of Israeli civilians and lauds their killers as martyrs.

By supporting Qaradawi, Livingstone has betrayed homosexuals, Jews, women and most of all moderate Muslims, who have to struggle for the limelight while men like Qaradawi are embraced by Livingstone.

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  1. Derius — on 23rd August, 2007 at 1:11 pm  

    Well said Rumbold!

    It should also be noted that Mr Livingstone stated matter of factly, in the “Clash of Civilisations” conference that he himself organised in January this year in London, that Dr Qaradawi is “the future of Islam”.

    With a Mayor like this, who needs enemies.

  2. ZinZin — on 23rd August, 2007 at 2:49 pm  

    Rumbold

    Why not rubbish his Transport policies? That was the policy platform upon which he won the election.

  3. Rumbold — on 23rd August, 2007 at 2:56 pm  

    Thanks Derius.

    ZinZin, I happen to agree with the broad thrust of his transport policy. My piece was about what Ken says and the way that he conducts himself, which is what the previous piece on Boris was about.

  4. Sheikh Yassin — on 23rd August, 2007 at 3:06 pm  

    Dr. Qaradawi is a moderate muslim, and most moderate muslims agree with his views.

  5. BevanKieran — on 23rd August, 2007 at 3:55 pm  

    Ken Livingstone commenting a few weeks after July 7th
    bombings

    ‘If a young Jewish boy in this country goes and joins the Israeli army, and ends up killing many Palestinians in operations and can come back, that is wholly legitimate,” he said. “But for a young Muslim boy in this country, who might think: I want to defend my Palestinian brothers and sisters and gets involved, he is branded as a terrorist. And I think it is this that has infected the attitude about how we deal with these problems.’

    Jonathan Freedland’s excellent response.

    http://politics.guardian.co.uk/gla/comment/0,,1536905,00.html

    Imagine these cases for a moment. A British man emigrates to Israel; a few years later he might get called up for military service; he might even end up in an operation that results in the killing of civilians. And then there is another British man who arrives in Israel for the sole purpose of staging a suicide bombing. (This latter case is not hypothetical: Britons Asif Mohammed Hanif and Omar Khan Sharif did exactly that in 2003.) Is there not a moral difference between these two actions? Why does Livingstone say they are equivalent?

    More importantly, what is the mayor doing talking like this? He must realise how incendiary it is to bring the Middle East conflict directly to these shores, pitting the “young Jewish boy” against “the young Muslim boy”. How reckless to encourage one community to see the other as would-be recruits for the bitter war of Israeli and Palestinian. “They seek to turn Londoners against each other,” Livingstone said of the terrorists on July 7. Yet what was he doing last week?

  6. ZinZin — on 23rd August, 2007 at 3:56 pm  

    Rumbold
    It would be better if both sides held back until Boris and Ken publish their manifestos.

  7. AsifB — on 23rd August, 2007 at 4:00 pm  

    Sheikh Yassin – I don’t think most Muslims living in the West agree with Qaradawi’s reported views; certainly most British Muslims of South Asian origin I know will not have even heard of him (before he became a media figure) !

    In this sense Livingstone was clearly wrong to have promoted Qaradawi, but at the time he did it was near the height of the government’s love in with the MCB, so presenting right wing, socially anti-equality political Islamists as ‘moderate’ simply because they don’t carry bombs was govt. policy. This is wrong in principle and damages the perception of ordinary Muslims in practice so I’m sad it happenned. I’m also disappointed by Ken’s spat with Peter Tatchell, even though he does have a defence in that sharing a platform with a homophobe does not make one homophobic.

    But beyond that, I think Rumbold overstates his case by presenting Daily Mail hate or Ken’s criticsms of Israel as anti-semitism. These are just his well known opinions and do not detract from fitness to be mayor.

    I agree with Rumbold that the ‘try your luck under the Ayotallahs’ line was racist (and ill informed as “they” were from Iraq) but in the context of Ken’s anti-racism track record, you have to see this as an aberration which would only be a major character flaw if it occurred more often.

    As for Rumbold’s references to ‘Irish terorists’ and ‘nuclear free zones,’ well these only serve to align Rumbold with Thatcher’s views of Ken, which she dealt with by abolishing the GLC. So much for democracy then.

    And at the time, who would have been broadly Thatcherite with Camera moon in their jolly Oxbridge drinking club – step forward the man whose editorship of the Spectator under the Blacks was its most right wing ever.

  8. Guy Aitchison — on 23rd August, 2007 at 4:27 pm  

    This is a bit far fetched isn’t it? You seem to be imputing to Livingstone the views of homophobic or anti-semitic people, simply because he has met them or had dealings with them. You don’t give any examples of anti-semitic, racist, or homophobic statements he himself has made. The first example may be in bad taste but it is not anti-semtitic, and I doubt even the most convinced Ken-haters would agree that the following gratuitous remark represents “Livingstone’s world” : “people who argue that gays should not be flogged for being gay are now right-wing fascists”.
    He is clearly guilty in your eyes for supporting a democratically elected president, but could you also give examples of his “support for dictators” in Latin America?

  9. Rumbold — on 23rd August, 2007 at 7:49 pm  

    Sheikh Yassin:

    I am not taking advice on what constitutes a moderate Muslim from someone who uses the moniker of the founder of a terrorist group devoted to murdering Israelis.

    ZinZin:

    “It would be better if both sides held back until Boris and Ken publish their manifestos.”

    They are both on record saying various things that they think and believe in, so it seems pointless to wait until some formal publication.

    AsifB:

    “In the context of Ken’s anti-racism track record, you have to see this as an aberration which would only be a major character flaw if it occurred more often.”

    Ken has been making anti-Semitic remarks for years. He might have a track record oppossing some forms of racism, but he encourages others. This was not a one-off.

    “I think Rumbold overstates his case by presenting Daily Mail hate or Ken’s criticsms of Israel as anti-semitism. These are just his well known opinions and do not detract from fitness to be mayor.”

    People who dislike the Daily Mail usually have something to recommend them. Criticism of Israel is good- all states need to be criticised. However, criticism of Israel can devolve into anti-Semitism, as often people will make a sensible criticism of Israel, before descending into the “aren’t suicide bombers matyrs” mindset.

    “As for Rumbold’s references to ‘Irish terorists’ and ‘nuclear free zones,’ well these only serve to align Rumbold with Thatcher’s views of Ken, which she dealt with by abolishing the GLC.”

    The nuclear-free zones were a joke- it implied that nuclear war would not touch London. As for the reference to Irish terrorists, what else would you call people who deliberately murdered civilians in order to achieve power and who were Irish? I am happy to be associated with Mrs. Thatcher.

    Guy Aitchison:

    “You seem to be imputing to Livingstone the views of homophobic or anti-semitic people, simply because he has met them or had dealings with them.”

    If Ken had merely been at the same conference as Qaradawi, then I would not say anything, as people do not choose who is at the conference with them. Qaradawi is a homophobic, anti-Semitic, misogynistic bigot. Livingstone not only defended Qaradawi’s right to say these things, but labelled the man as a moderate, even after his views became clear. Now in my mind that is the same as endorsing his views.

    The relevant comparison would be if you invited Nick Griffin to speak, found out what his views were, then defended his views to the hilt, lauded him as a moderate white, and smeared any of his opponents as anti-British. If you did that, you could be rightly labelled as a BNP supporter. Why then should Livingstone escape censure for supporting homophobes, racists and misogynists? He is not the head of state, so you cannot even use the realpolitik defence. He gets into bed with these people because he wants to.

    “He is clearly guilty in your eyes for supporting a democratically elected president, but could you also give examples of his “support for dictators” in Latin America?”

    Livingstone repeatedly backs Castro. Now you, along with many left-wingers, may consider him a hero, but he is still a dictator:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=425142&in_page_id=1770

    With political prisoners languishing in jail, is this a right time for a celebration?

  10. Sunny — on 24th August, 2007 at 4:17 am  

    Livingstone not only defended Qaradawi’s right to say these things, but labelled the man as a moderate, even after his views became clear.

    I think that’s actually more of an insult to Muslims than people who hate Qaradawi. Put him on a scale of nutters, including the Al-Qaeda lot and Qaradawi does look vaguely sane. The problem is Ken doesn’t meet enough Muslims more to the liberal-left of Qaradawi.

    This is more to do with his naivety IMO…. because he does the same with Hindu/Sikh groups in London.

  11. Nyrone — on 24th August, 2007 at 10:12 am  

    What Rubbish! Nit-picking holes and uttered phrases that are attributed to Ken in the wrong context off the cuff, and basically smearing him with apocryphal claims for simply TALKING and MEETING with people who hold views you disagree with.

    This reminds me of a hack-job by somebody who goes through entire newspapers in their library looking for spelling mistakes. Ken Livingstone is a progressive politician, get over it.

    The fact that he is open-minded and liberal enough to meet and hold talks with people whose views he disagres with, demonstrates that he is seeking a dialogue with all parties, I think this is exactly the kind of person we need for London…

    “let us look back at some of Red Ken’s anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, homophobic, racist and misogynistic moments”

    I think you should consider toning it down, or join the Daily Mail sensationalist-for-the-sake-of-it squad.

  12. Guy Aitchison — on 24th August, 2007 at 12:15 pm  

    “Livingstone not only defended Qaradawi’s right to say these things, but labelled the man as a moderate, even after his views became clear. Now in my mind that is the same as endorsing his views.”

    And that’s the main fallacy of your argument: although perhaps ill- judged, in no way is that the same as endorsing his views. It’s unwise to throw around defamatory insults like this without stong supporting evidence. In reality I think you know that Ken does not share the views of Qaradawi and that this is just a smear, your attempt to equate criticism of Israel with anti-semitism is just a sign of desperation…

  13. Roger — on 24th August, 2007 at 12:53 pm  

    Mr Livingstone seems to make a point of not just meeting and talking to but inviting people he disagrees with to meet and talk to him. He is also selective about which people he meets and talks to. Presumably he disagrees just as strongly with the BNP, or the Israeli settlers’ movement, but he has not met or spoken to them.
    If Qaradawi is a moderate he is a moderate bigot.

  14. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 2:20 pm  

    So Livingstone is a homophobe and anti-semite because he chooses to shake hands with Qaradawi?
    Why don’t we take this guilt by association to its logical conclusion? Or rather, I should say, why have you chosen to preclude high-profile staunch believers of other semitic religions that you probably support yourself?

    All semitic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, are homophobic. And all believers of these religions are compelled to believe that homosexuality is a sin and, to be precise, a sin worthy of death. By extension, this means all Christians, Jews and Muslims are homophobic. This is true whether they subscribe to these edicts explicitly or not.

    Where does that place people like Ruth Kelly? Why have you chosen to leave out Tony Blair? Both are staunch believers of Christianity.

    George Bush could be called the first President propelled by the American Christian Right. And you know what they think about homosexuality don’t you? Bush never explicityly states that he considers homosexuality a sin, but his pushing of anti-homosexuality bills should leave no doubt about where he stands in relation to gay sex.

    Blair’s intimate association with Bush and his views of homosexuality should mean, by the terms of your thesis, that he is a homophobe too. He’s a staunch Christian and a neophyte Catholic. What do you think his religion compels him to thinks of homosexuality?

    So why is it that a brown man in a turban is a homophobe by belief is worthy of contempt but a white man in a suit, also a homophobe by belief, is never picked up on their homophobia?

    I think they call it Islamophobia.

  15. Rumbold — on 24th August, 2007 at 2:53 pm  

    Sunny:

    “Put him on a scale of nutters, including the Al-Qaeda lot and Qaradawi does look vaguely sane. The problem is Ken doesn’t meet enough Muslims more to the liberal-left of Qaradawi. This is more to do with his naivety IMO… because he does the same with Hindu/Sikh groups in London.”

    Ken is an intelligent man- he must have realised by now that the groups that he sucks up to are not moderate. It is not naivety, it is political calculation; ‘community’ groups give him maximum exposure and are good at mobilising people and resources. Qaradawi is more moderate than Bin Laden- hardly the gold standard.

    Nyrone and Guy Aitchison:

    Why do you keep arguing that Ken disagrees with Qaradawi, and is merely meeting him to promote dialogue? Ken has lauded Qaradawi and smears principled opponents like Peter Tatchell. Why is that not worthy of criticism? Unless of course you share Qaradawi’s views and see nothing wrong with them.

    Guy Aitchison:

    I divorced criticism of Israel from anti-Semitism, but pointed out that the former can sometimes degenerate into the latter.

    Roger:

    “Presumably he disagrees just as strongly with the BNP, or the Israeli settlers’ movement, but he has not met or spoken to them. If Qaradawi is a moderate he is a moderate bigot.”

    Good points. Anyone care to address them?

    Sid:

    People who accept that homosexuality is a sin and should be punished are homophobic. I write a piece about a London Mayoral candidate, in response to piece about another London Mayoral candiate, and am accused of shielding Bush and Blair. I think that Bush is homophobic, or else, like Livingstone, cynically uses the langauge of homophobes in order to get votes. Neither Bush nor Blair are candidates for London Mayor, so I left them out. Is Blair homophobic? The measures he brought in suggest otherwise, and he does not resort to smearing gay campaigners as Islamophobic.

    “So why is it that a brown man in a turban is a homophobe by belief is worthy of contempt but a white man in a suit, also a homophobe by belief, is never picked up on their homophobia?”

    My article is largely about a white man in a suit’s homophobia.

  16. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:05 pm  

    No Rumbold, your article is about a white man in a suit’s homophobia by association with a homophobic brown man in a turban.

    You chose or were unwilling to register the homophobia by association of a white man in a suit’s association with a homphobic white man in a suit.

    But thats not as fashionable amongst you Harry’s Placements is it?

  17. Rumbold — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:13 pm  

    I am getting pretty sick and tired of you accusing me of being a racist every time I say something that you don’t like. If you believe that Qaradawi is above criticism because he is brown, then fine.

    The article is about Livingstone, not anybody else. Everytime one writes an article, should everybody be included in it? For example, if you write an article about military rule in Bangladesh, can I accuse you of being anti-Burmese because you failed to mention the Burmese junta? Or shall we accept that not every article about bad behaviour has to include Bush and Blair?

  18. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:19 pm  

    Wait a minute, you’re the one who’s suggesting that a Mayoral candidate’s “homophobia by association” with a homophobe is qualitatively worse than a Prime Minister who association with a homophobe. You’re the one being cleverly selective. The brown element is incidental.

  19. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:24 pm  

    And can you tell us which of Ken’s policies suggest he is homophobic?

  20. Soso — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:32 pm  

    Sheikh Yassin – I don’t think most Muslims living in the West agree with Qaradawi’s reported views; certainly most British Muslims of South Asian origin I know will not have even heard of him (before he became a media figure)

    How can we know that? I can’t remember any Muslims denouncing Qaradawi’s bigotry and intolerance. Is their passivity a form of endorsement of Qaradawi’s views?

    So Livingstone is a homophobe and anti-semite because he chooses to shake hands with Qaradawi?
    Why don’t we take this guilt by association to its logical conclusion? Or rather, I should say, why have you chosen to preclude high-profile staunch believers of other semitic religions that you probably support yourself?
    SID

    Naw, Livingstone wouldn’t be a homophobe either were he to invite an equivalent twit…say Fred Phelps… to city hall and shake hands with him.

    There’d be absolutely NO guilt by association, as we all well know. Ken would be commended and praised for his open-minded tolerance.

    And just how does criticising Red Ken make one a supporter of other *semitic religions*?

    What an absolute leap of logic; it’s as though you can’t sit on your hands for even a second and resist the urge to fling around barely disquised slurs implying Rumbold is a cryptic Zionist!

    Are you a card-carrying Zionist, Rumbold? Were you trained by both the IDF and Mossad to subliminally push the Zionist agenda on this blog?

    All semitic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, are homophobic. And all believers of these religions are compelled to believe that homosexuality is a sin and, to be precise, a sin worthy of death.

    Please Sid, don’t give us this equivalence garbage; Christianne Amanpour already beat ya to it!

    Both in The (nominally) Christian West and in Israel homosexuals and even drag queens have been elected to parliament.

    I know of no city mayor or gov’t rep ANYWHERE in the Islamic world who is openly gay.

    And it is worth noting that only the Grand Mufti and NOT the Patriarch of Moscow advocated murdering homosexuals.

    Where does that place people like Ruth Kelly? Why have you chosen to leave out Tony Blair? Both are staunch believers of Christianity.

    It leaves both in the camp of decency, Sid.

    Blair’s intimate association with Bush and his views of homosexuality should mean, by the terms of your thesis, that he is a homophobe too. He’s a staunch Christian and a neophyte Catholic. What do you think his religion compels him to thinks of homosexuality?

    Once again, Sid, let me clear this up for ya, but first a question.

    If Blair is having an intimate association with Bush, are you then implying both are gay?

    Neither Bush nor Blair, by their words, deeds, actions or legislation, have EVER, unlike the turbanned twit, advocated the killing of homosexuals.

    As a homosexual, I can assure it’s a BIG difference; one, in fact, of such magnitude that people shouldn’t even mention Blair/Bush in the same sentence as Qaradawi.

    Good posting Rumbold!

  21. Bleh — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:33 pm  

    I am getting pretty sick and tired of you accusing me of being a racist every time I say something that you don’t like.

    Oh, that’s Sid pretty much down to a tee, alas.

  22. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 3:40 pm  

    Bleh and Soso, PP’s visiting braindead ghouls in support of this ridiculous thesis. Need I say more. hah!

  23. Rumbold — on 24th August, 2007 at 5:18 pm  

    Thank you Soso and Bleh. Your kind words cheered me immensely. Sid just gets too emotional at times- he is not nasty deep down.

    Sid:

    “Can you tell us which of Ken’s policies suggest he is homophobic?”

    Smearing gay opponents as fascists and bigot because they disagree with him. Defending the views of violent homophobes as moderate, thus suggesting that all Muslims should strive to murder gays. Bush and Blair may have been mates, but I cannot remember Blair saying that Bush’s anti-gay policies were good.

    “The brown element is incidental.”

    That was not what you were saying in your previous posts.

  24. Bleh — on 24th August, 2007 at 5:24 pm  

    Sid, you come across as a frothing lunatic. Calm down, get yourself some Horlicks or something (I personally recommend Asda Lavender Bubblebath and a good long soak to calm oneself down).

  25. Bleh — on 24th August, 2007 at 5:25 pm  

    BTW, wasn’t Livingstone’s sum response to criticism of Qawadari (from a clip on MEMRI) to chant “its a Jewish website, Its a Jewish website”?

  26. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 5:28 pm  

    Smearing gay opponents as fascists and bigot because they disagree with him.

    That’s not a policy and nor is he being homophobic when he smears gay opponents.

    This policy of Bush is homophobic.

    The brown element is incidental to the point of guilt by association. But it seems to be fundamental in your choice of what constitutes good homophobia vs bad homophobia.

  27. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 5:34 pm  

    Bleh, you’re a waste of time and out of your depth in a puddle of piss.

  28. Rumbold — on 24th August, 2007 at 6:17 pm  

    Bush is homophobic- I have said that. But the article was not about him; it was about Livingstone.

  29. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 6:36 pm  

    I’m saddened by your crisis of objectivity, Rumbold.

  30. Bleh — on 24th August, 2007 at 6:38 pm  

    I’m saddened by your crisis of objectivity, Rumbold.

    Coming from someone whose sole raison’d'etre seems to be to insult people he disagrees with, that’s very amusing.

    Why are Livingstone supporters so quick to insult anyone who dares disagree with Comrade Ken?

  31. Sid — on 24th August, 2007 at 6:45 pm  

    Don’t know. All I know is that I enjoy insulting weasels like you.

  32. Bleh — on 24th August, 2007 at 9:15 pm  

    Don’t know. All I know is that I enjoy insulting weasels like you.

    That would work if I actually cared….

  33. Robert — on 24th August, 2007 at 10:55 pm  

    Livingstone’s “repeated hostile behaviour towards homosexuals”? What planet does “Rumbold” live on?

    Doesn’t he remember the 1980s, when Livingstone was denounced for taking a progressive line on gay rights at a time when this was far from the mainstream position it is today? Indeed, if it is a mainsteam position today, this is due not least to the fact that prominent figures like Ken had the courage to take a stand on the issue in the face of a hostile media.

    As for the Mayor of Moscow’s visit to London earlier this year, it’s nonsense to claim that Livingstone only grudgingly and belatedly condemned “his anti-gay stance”. Livingstone had already issued a statement back in May 2006 condemning the Mayor of Moscow over his ban on that year’s Pride demonstration.
    http://tinyurl.com/265cp4

    The objection to Tatchell’s line on the Grand Mufti and Moscow Pride 2006 is that Tatchell and OutRage! concentrated their fire on the Mufti as representing the main threat of homophobic violence (in Moscow, of all places!) while ignoring the real threat that came from the far Right backed by a section of the Orthodox Church. More details here: http://tinyurl.com/ywy6vh

    “Rumbold” condemns “Livingstone’s grovelling before Irish terrorists in the 1980s, or his support for dictators in Latin America, or his backing of the authoritarian Hugo Chavez”.

    As with gay rights, Livingstone’s policy of engagement with the Sinn Fein leadership and his support for a negotiated settlement in Northern Ireland subsequently became the mainstream position. If it hadn’t, we’d still be facing an IRA bombing campaign.

    “Support for dictators in Latin America”? Which dictators? I take this to be a reference to Fidel Castro, and it is true that Ken has sided with Cuba against the efforts by successive US governments to bring the country to its knees economically and impose a pro-US regime on the Cuban people. And good for Ken on that one too, I say.

    The “authoritarian Hugo Chavez” has been repeatedly endorsed by the Venezuelan people in numerous elections and referenda. He has had a hugely progressive impact on Latin America (and the Caribbean for that matter), shifting the relationship of forces against US imperialism. In London the alliance with Chavez has given half-price bus fares to people on income support.

    The stuff about Qaradawi is just ignorant. Livingstone published a extensive answer to critics of his relationship with Qaradawi. It’s online (pdf) here: http://tinyurl.com/37sd8r

    I suggest that “Rumbold” reads it, because there’s no sign that he actually knows anything about the subject.

    And who is “Rumbold” anyway?

  34. sid — on 25th August, 2007 at 12:44 pm  

    …so you won’t mind me practising the Sid stun gun on you every now and then. :-)

  35. Rumbold — on 26th August, 2007 at 5:56 pm  

    Sid:

    “so you won’t mind me practising the Sid stun gun on you every now and then.”

    I have no idea what that means, but it made me laugh.

    Robert:

    “Doesn’t he [Rumbold] remember the 1980s, when Livingstone was denounced for taking a progressive line on gay rights at a time when this was far from the mainstream position it is today”

    Which is why it makes it so sad that he is happy to use homophobic remarks in order to get himself re-elected.

    “The objection to Tatchell’s line on the Grand Mufti and Moscow Pride 2006 is that Tatchell and OutRage! concentrated their fire on the Mufti as representing the main threat of homophobic violence (in Moscow, of all places!) while ignoring the real threat that came from the far Right backed by a section of the Orthodox Church. “

    Tatchell condemned both the Mayor and the Mufti. Livingstone was smearing Tatchell because Tatchell called the Mufti homophobic, which he is.

    “As with gay rights, Livingstone’s policy of engagement with the Sinn Fein leadership and his support for a negotiated settlement in Northern Ireland subsequently became the mainstream position.”

    Livingstone’s policy regarding Sinn Fein/IRA was not one of engagement, it was one of celebration- lets all spend ratepayers’ money on a party to celebrate a group that murders British civilians.

    “Which dictators? I take this to be a reference to Fidel Castro, and it is true that Ken has sided with Cuba against the efforts by successive US governments to bring the country to its knees economically and impose a pro-US regime on the Cuban people. And good for Ken on that one too, I say.”

    Castro is a dictator. He does not allow elections, and imprisons those who call for democracy. What a noble struggle.

    “In London the alliance with Chavez has given half-price bus fares to people on income support.”

    That money should be spent on poor Venezuelans, not on subsidising one of the richest cities in the world. As for ‘authoritarian’, what else would you call introducing a law so as to rule by decree, persecuting those who signed petitions against you, and shutting down critical TV stations?

    “The stuff about Qaradawi is just ignorant. Livingstone published a extensive answer to critics of his relationship with Qaradawi.”

    That reply is simply Livingstonian propaganda. There is overwhelming evidence to show Qaradawi’s true views (his website for instance). Of course Livingstone is going to try and spin his association with Qaradaqi- that link you provided was hardly a rebuttal.

    “And who is “Rumbold” anyway?”

    Women want him, men want to be him (or the other way around, I am never really sure).

  36. TheFriendlyInfidel — on 4th September, 2007 at 3:21 pm  

    Grrr.

    Livingstone.

    The first time I picked up a copy of “The Londoner” I thought that it was a real free paper. As I turned the papers I noticed each one was in some way sucking Ken’s c**k, the messages “Ken Loves You”, “Ken Cares” all mixed up with praise of his policitals stance, things like “youths ride free on buses” and how wonderful it was that our Venzullians friends could afford to pay for it. Other papers had commented how this corelated to huge rise in physical attacks on the busses …

    How many people don’t see the difference between “Livingstonian propaganda” and a independant newspaper? How many people realise that this free complimentary (pun intended) paper is paid from thier own pockets.

    Ken does I good job of running the transport systems. He should stay out of international policitics for all the reasons that Rumbold stated in this piece.

    I’m not sure if Boris will do a better job on the buses, but I’m sure he won’t get confused and think that he is an international statesman and I’m prepared to vote for flop boy for that reason alone.

    TFI

  37. TheFriendlyInfidel — on 4th September, 2007 at 3:23 pm  

    BTW just because I cannot spell “politics” properly without a spell checker, doesn’t mean I ought stay out of it.

    TFI

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