human rights

The Scottish Independence Podcast 96 – Colin Fox

Colin-FoxFor the first Scottish Independence Podcast interview after the referendum, I spoke with former MSP, national co-spokesperson for the Scottish Socialist Party and member of the Yes Campaign, Colin Fox.

We talked about what the Yes campaign achieved, and will achieve in future and how, despite the disappointment of the loss, it’s only S.I.D.

You can find out what S.I.D. is in the interview.

Apart from that we had to talk about the Tory assault on human rights, why Labour™ (or the Red Tories™ if you prefer), are getting it in the neck and the BBC and their wonderfully impartial and not at all defend-the-status-quo-at-all-costs type coverage.

We also got on to what a Yes alliance could do in the future.

There’s all that and much more.

Hope you enjoy…

This is the direct download link (right click and save as)

You can listen to the show online at its web page

Or you can subscribe with itunes

We can alse be found on youtube



The Right To Talk About Rights

Given the tories disgraceful position on Human Rights, Labour have been trying to position themselves as the party that supports them.

I present you this very important documentary to show you what Labour did to Human Rights in the UK the last time they were in power…

Saturday Matinee 30 – Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields

This is a truly horrifying documentary and I’m not kidding when I say that those of you that can’t stomach scenes of violence and horror shouldn’t watch it.

It is about the civil war in Sri Lanka, a problem that the UN seemingly has failed to address.

The UK government whilst hypocritically criticising and calling for investigation, has also, as almost always, been selling weapons, or allowing them to be sold.

The others in this series are here.

The Scottish Independence Podcast 38 – Human Rights

shamiFor the 38th episode of The Scottish Independence Podcast, I am reproducing a talk given by Shami Chakrabarti from the campaign group Liberty. This talk is reproduced with the kind permission of Liverpool John Moores University. It comes from their Roscoe lecture series.

The reason I am reproducing this talk is that with Cameron himself suggesting the UK may have to withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights a month or so ago, these become important issues not just globally, but also in the upcoming referendum.

Chakrabarti was once, for the hideous crime of sticking up for human rights, described as “The most dangerous woman in Britain” by The Sun. In this talk she explains the importance of the rights we have, and what might begin to unravel if they were removed.

Hope you enjoy…

This is the direct download link (right click and save as)

You can listen to the show online at its web page

Or you can subscribe with itunes

We are also now to be found on youtube

P.S. If you’d like to help this and the other podcasts keep going, please go here.

Saturday Matinee 21 – Taking Liberties

Civil liberties have been in the news again a lot recently. At the UK level Teresa May floated the idea of withdrawing from the European Convention on Human Rights and in Scotland there has been much discontent at the Offensive Behaviour Bill.

It’s interesting to take a look back then to the previous Labour Government’s attack on civil liberties and this documentary makes a pretty chilling point. It is of course still relevant as many of the laws they discuss are still being used every day, though the ID card scheme was scrapped.

So here’s the film. Prepare to get angry.

The other films in this series are here.

A Human Rights Choice

Here is just a little compare and contrast for you.

The first is from the Scottish Government document about setting up a new constitution in an inclusive process after a Yes vote in a referendum…

“…a constitutional convention should consider how to further embed equality and human rights within the constitution and the extent to which the people of Scotland should have constitutional rights in relation to issues such as welfare, pensions, health care and education.”

The second from a recent speech by Theresa May

“…And we need to stop human rights legislation interfering with our ability to fight crime and control immigration. That’s why, as our last manifesto promised, the next Conservative government will scrap the Human Rights Act, and it’s why we should also consider very carefully our relationship with the European Court of Human Rights and the Convention it enforces.”

I can’t decide for you but I know which one seems more appealing to me.472

Red (Rose) Bull & Tory Tosso

So Labour wants  the Bahrain Formula 1 race boycotted and the Tories want to keep politics out of sport.

British Formula One drivers including Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton should boycott the Bahrain Grand Prix, Labour’s Yvette Cooper has said.

“I don’t think British drivers should go,” the shadow home secretary said.

Amnesty International has warned Bahrain faces a “human rights crisis” as security forces clash with protesters.

But senior Conservative MP John Whittingdale said politics should be “kept out of sport if at all possible”.


But shadow justice minister Andy Slaughter, who chairs the all party parliamentary group for democracy in Bahrain, told BBC 5live he would be “very pleased if the BBC pulled out” of covering the race.

“Organisations like the BBC are giving legitimacy to the al-Khalifa regime, which is… a dictatorial regime, which is killing many of its own citizens,” Mr Slaughter said.

Personally, I think it should be stopped but I find it strange that Labour are saying this about dictatorial regimes whilst their former leader can’t remember anything about rendition to other dodgy regimes and the conservatives are still trying to sell weapons to any other number of them.

Of course keeping politics out of sport is exactly what the Tories will be planning to do in the olympics. I am utterly convinced there won’t be any flag-waving, we’re-all-in-this-together, jingoistic or nationalistic kind of comments at all in the run up to and during the olympics.

Meanwhile of course, the race, the hypocrisy and the slaughter and repression will keep going round and round in the manner we have become accustomed to.