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And more damned lies

Toby Young, writing in The Telegraph (yes, I know I keep taking the piss out of it but some of the blog writers there are pretty good) dissects Gloomy McSnotmuncher’s speech. It was good to see that a couple of MPs brought him up on the McBride-Whelan business and asked why the Browns were still pally with the Murdochs and with Rebekah Brooks two and three years after the story on their son ran, but there was another little oddity that I’d missed elsewhere.

If, as Brown claims, the Cabinet Secretary obstructed his efforts to order a judicial inquiry into the dastardly goings-on at News International, why did Sir Gus O’Donnell issue a denial immediately after the speech claiming that the decision not to launch an inquiry was Brown’s and Brown’s alone? Sir Gus is now seeking permission to publish the confidential advice to rebut the allegation.

Well, I can’t see how the two sides of that story can both be true. I have no idea how much light it might shed on things but still, let’s hope Sir Gus O’Donnell gets the okay to back up his version of events, or failing that publishes it anyway. There’ll be a replacement for the NotW soon enough though if technically it’s not supposed to be published they might not want it. Bit soon, really.

Gordon Brown’s or Sir Gus O’Donnell’s? Place your bets.

H/T to The Libertarian Alliance.

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Lies, damned lies and … no, that’s it. Just lies and damned lies.

Via the Kitty Counters, the Prime Mentalist of Australia, Gingery Dullard, and the Treasurer, Wayne Swan.

Counting Cats has also put up a vid of the Prime Mentalist getting called out as a liar by a member of the public and coming across as a patronising tool in her responses. Unfortunately there’s no subsequent Brownian reveal of the PM’s thoughts over a forgotten wireless mic, but we can’t have everything.

The reliability of waterboarding

From The Age:

The mastermind of the 9/11 attacks warned that al-Qaeda has hidden a nuclear bomb in Europe which will unleash a “nuclear hellstorm” if Osama bin Laden is captured, leaked files reveal.
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed told Guantanamo Bay interrogators the terror group would detonate the nuclear device if the al-Qaeda chief was captured or killed, according to the classified files released by the WikiLeaks website.

And it was very sweet of the Americans not to catch him so that nobody would be embarrassed by the complete lack of nuclear explosions in European capitals that would no doubt have resulted. I imagine that in terrorist circles to threaten that sort of thing and not come good on it is nothing short of social death, and unfortunately that’s not the kind that comes with 70 odd virgins as an upside. Very odd virgins, possibly, but I can’t see much of a queue forming for that.

The German weekly Der Spiegel, also citing WikiLeaks, said that Sheikh Mohammed had told his interrogators he had set up two cells for the purpose of attacking Heathrow in 2002.
[…]
Der Spiegel noted that his “confessions” should have be treated with caution as they could have been extracted through torture. Sheikh Mohammed is known to have undergone the method known as “waterboarding”.

Look, of course it should be treated with caution. Does anyone imagine that if they had a nuke they wouldn’t have let the bugger off by now? Clear and present bullshit! If this stupidity is the kind of intelligence water boarding people generates I think they should try something else. Would a perpetually looped tape of Rebecca Black be over the top?

I can hear the Ambush Predator’s keyboard rattling – UPDATED

Saw this – another one of those increeeedibly rare cases. Admitted the lie and still not jailed for her manipulative, revenge driven attempt to ruin a man’s life. Lovely woman.

So I’m settling down to wait for something in JuliaM’s inimitable style to appear outside the Ambush Predator’s cave. If she hasn’t blogged it in an hour or so I’ll be astonished.

UPDATE – tomorrow, apparently. No doubt it’s been dragged from where it was caught right into the very back of the cave for a more thorough mauling. Probably won’t be much left on the carcass by the time she’s done.

How criminals and nutters can get around gun laws.

Lie.

In news story after news story, I see the claim over and over again that Jared Loughner legally obtained his Glock 19 9mm handgun from Sportsman’s Warehouse on November 30th, 2010.

This is false. Jared Loughner obtained his gun by means of a felony.

Sportsman’s Warehouse is a Federally licensed firearm dealer (FFL). They are required to obtain an ATF form 4473 for every firearm transaction they have. This form captures personal data about the purchaser, and that data is then used to preform a NICS (National Instant Criminal System) background check.

Jared Loughner lied on this form.

Question 11 – E on the current ATF Form 4473 is as follows:

Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, or narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?

Loughner MUST HAVE answered “No” to this question in order to process the background check.

We know by the testimony of those close to him, Loughner was described as a “pothead” and was rejected by the US Army because of his admitted marijuana addiction.

It goes on to explain how the same application form clearly states that anyone answering yes is prohibited from buying a gun and that making a false statement is a felony. Sound familiar? It ought to to Brits: Thomas Hamilton, the man responsible for the Dunblane massacre, also lied on his firearms certificate application form.

At the time the police were supposed to check that the applicant was a member of an approved gun club which had suitable facilities for the type and calibre of gun being applied for, and that the applicant had shot there under supervision for a probationary period of at least three months, before granting a firearms certificate for handguns. Hamilton apparently lied on his first application – he was not a member of the club he named on his application and that club did not have an appropriate range for use with the calibre of gun for which Hamilton applied. He fucking lied and it could have been stopped there if anyone had made the appropriate checks. Hamilton would not have had a firearms certificate granted in the first place. Subsequent lies were told on subsequent applications and Hamilton was able to renew his right to keep guns time and again when cursory checks by the authorities would have given ample reason to withhold the renewal of a firearms certificate that should never have been granted in the first place.

Does it become legal simply because the paperwork was accepted? Does dishonesty when completing applications, particularly when failing to answer honestly is an offence, not negate the legal status? It normally would for passports and immigration visas, though of course that would only get you deported from practically everywhere apart from Britain, and I believe it would for something like a driving licence. So surely it would also apply for licences and permits for a firearm.

Yet the MSM would rather report that Loughner’s gun was legally held, just as they did in the UK with Hamilton.

Draw your own conclusions.

H/T to feline enumerator, Sam Duncan.

Finally, a fucking admission – UPDATED.

David Chaytor has pleaded guilty to three counts of fraud. The poor soul’s conscience must have simply been eating him up, though not fast enough to stop him from stalling and trying to use the Bill of Rights to claim that submitting fraudulent expense claims was covered by parliamentary privilege. I’m guessing Chaytor either thought or was advised that his case was piss weak and is now angling for a non-custodial sentence. I do hope the judge keeps in mind that the fucker fought tooth and nail to avoid a trial and has had to be dragged to court kicking and screaming and with several stops for the judicial system to pry his fingers off various things he was trying to hang on to. Hardly the actions of a penitent man overcome with remorse, I feel, so he really ought to do some time. Not very much, perhaps, and probably as part of a longer sentence which is mostly suspended. He’s not likely to be a danger to the public or a repeat offender after all, but he also defrauded the public and abused his position to do so. I don’t particularly want him to end up as B Wing’s shared bitch and I don’t mind if he spends a lot of time with an electronic tag, as long as he does at least a little time. If he doesn’t what message will the current mob take from it? Some will think he’s been bloody lucky but others will think, “Great. Lie, cheat, steal, avoid responsibility and fight any attempt of the proles to exact some measure of justice, and if the worst comes to the worst you can still avoid a Shawshank Redemption moment in a Wandsworth shower by pleading guilty once a trial is inevitable.”

That’s a message that cannot be allowed. Sorry, Dave. Some credit for finally coming clean, albeit extremely belatedly, but just as you’ve set a bad example for others to follow it’s now necessary for you to set a better one.

PS – And Woolas has lost his challenge too. Good.

UPDATE – The Tele are saying he faces a maximum of seven years in prison but will probably get a lot less due to the plea. That actually sounds fair.

The coming catastrophist mantra.

Warble gloaming could, according to James Delingpole, be circling the drain, and we should get ready for what he calls the next Big Lie: biodiversity. Personally this seems like something I can get right behind for a change. I’m all for more diversity so let’s get cracking. I suggest we start by genetically modifying absolutely anything that moves and then anything that doesn’t until it begins to move, and we keep going until the bio is so amazingly diverse that people are having to shoot down their breakfast cereal in the mornings after it’s smashed its way out of the packet and is flying round the room chasing the cat.

They’re grrrrrrrrrrreat.

Do you think Greenpeace will have me?

It’s not a little fib, you know.

There are white lies, bad lies and disgraceful lies, but among the worst lies that can be told must surely be to point the police at a man and claim that he raped you. Aside from the waste of police time investigating a non-existent crime the stigma that attaches even to suspected rapists can cost them their livelihoods and even on occasion their lives. It must be a life shattering experience that in it’s own way is on a par with rape itself. Do I go too far with that? We’re told that rape is above all the exercise of power over someone helpless to resist, that the power is used to humiliate and degrade that person, and that the devastating emotional effects is something that will stay with the victim long after any physical marks have faded, if indeed the victim isn’t driven to suicide by the experience. So tell me how the power to ruin someone’s life to much the same extent with a simple lie isn’t up there with rape? There’s no physical attack involved, although if there’s any prison time spent as a result of a false rape accusation the victim of the lie will likely enter prison feeling some fear for his life and will be very lucky indeed not to get roughed up, if not literally raped himself. With all this in mind if someone deliberately lies about rape knowing this then I can’t honestly say that what they’re doing is significantly less malicious and evil than what a real rapist does to his victims, which brings up a question: why the hell don’t these liars get jailed more often than they do?

The last time I counted at her blog the admirable Ambush Predator, who feels little in the way of sororal love for fellow females who commit this crime, had well over forty examples of false rape accusations, very few of which had resulted in any jail time for the guilty party and absolutely none of which resulted in a sentence anywhere near what the victim would have got (or occasionally did get) if the false allegation had stuck. So the news that one liar is probably going to jail is welcome.

An office worker who falsely cried rape is facing jail after her lies led to an innocent man being arrested.
Brunette Samantha Merry, 21 … admitted making up the allegation against a 37-year-old man.
The suspect was arrested at his home and faced a four-month police investigation, with the possibility of a lengthy jail term if convicted.
Judge Anthony Goldstaub QC, sitting at Chelmsford Crown Court, told Merry: ‘Sort out your affairs on the assumption you’re likely to be sent to prison.’
Merry, of Great Baddow, Essex, was charged with perverting the course of justice on July 14. She pleaded guilty and will be sentenced on November 15.

The court heard 235 hours of police time were wasted investigating the false claim before the charges were dropped against the man, from Chelmsford.
Judge Goldstaub said: ‘Perverting the course of justice is a serious matter.
‘A false allegation of rape – as a result a man is arrested in his home, he spent 15 weeks on bail and there were 235 man hours wasted.
‘It has a bad impact on people and affects rape cases all over the country.’
After the case, Chief Inspector Joe Wrigley, of Essex Police, said: ‘Justice has been done and I hope it serves as a warning to anyone who would want to make a false allegation.
‘There are enough real crimes for us to investigate. The real victims need our support and those who don’t should refrain from doing this.’

I agree, Mr Wrigley, but I’d hope that you include the man Merry falsely accused – and kudos to The Mail for not naming him – as a victim as well.

Anyway, that one liar has been convicted and has been told to expect jail, and since perverting the course of justice technically carries a maximum of life imprisonment the judge could in theory impose the kind of sentence that he would have given a man who’d ruined his victim’s life by means of rape – this is in no way a victimless crime, remember. However, the bad news is that she won’t get anything like it if the judge follows the sentencing guidelines (and of course if he doesn’t she’s probably going to win on appeal).

General sentencing brackets summarised in Archbold at 28-28 as follows:

  • threatening or interfering with witnesses – 4 months to 24 months.
  • concealing evidence – 4 months to 18 months, possibly longer if serious crime.
  • false allegation of crime resulting in arrest of innocent person – 4 to 12 months.

Four months to a year, meaning in reality two to six months if Merry’s bright enough to behave herself inside. That is what she can expect for putting her victim through four months of hell. Four months of living in shame at what others thought of his character. Four months of sleepless nights. Four months of fear of trial and prison for a crime he didn’t commit, and the torment that he could expect if it got that far. And even now that’s over he’ll probably never be able to Google his own name without seeing a few results with ‘accused of rape’, probably never feel completely above suspicion despite the conviction of his tormentor. And it gets worse when you think about why the sentence is so light – I suspect she’s not actually being punished for what she did to him at all, but for what she did to the ‘course of justice’. I don’t have a problem with that as such, but again I feel a need to point out that there was a real victim here. A real person who will have suffered as a result of Samantha Merry’s decision to use her power to sic the police on to him in order to shame, humiliate and degrade him.

The police had their time wasted, and that’s wrong in itself, but what about the real victim? Does it seem fair that she may well serve less time than he did on bail? Does it seem fair that a rapist normally serves years (and yes, often not enough of them) for the lives that he ruins but a lie that can create the same effects is punished by serving weeks, and that only infrequently? Does it seem like equality of before the law?

Because it certainly doesn’t to me.

Bullshit and back-pedalling.

Does anyone believe her?

http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/player/emp/external/player.swf

Anyone? Anyone at all? No?

Well done, Haze, just you keep fucking digging long enough and you’ll come up in my back yard.

H/T Guido.

Hazel Blears destroyed by underwear inferno.

Via Guido, the most clear cut case of an over made up smug faced fucking ranga a politician telling a bare faced lie.

I sincerely hope that this epic pants-on-fire moment does indeed destroy the Right Dishonourable Hazel Blears in the career sense but I’m not hugely optimistic. This venal, dishonest and self-serving creature, people of Salford, is your representative at the Motherfucker of all Parliaments, and for that you may thank 16,655 of your fellows for re-electing the house flipping midget back to her first class seat on the gravy train. And now there’s not a damn thing they can do about it but to sit there and watch her feed parasitically on the taxpayers’ earnings like a small orange vampire for another few years, while telling them what a wonderful track record Labour has and trying to ignore the smoke pouring from her knickers.

How do I loathe thee, Hazel? Oh, fuck, let me count the ways.