Thursday, June 12, 2008

If you don't act on your principles, they are not principles, they are only opinions.
Sometimes I used to wonder whether senior politicos would recognise a principle if it bit them on the nose.

Judging by today's hysteria, they wouldn't, because they are seemingly entirely unable to recognise it in DD. It's not a publicity stunt, mental illness, a tiff, a rage, or any of the other foolish things that are being said. It is what it looks like - someone doing something because they think it is the right thing to do.

Outside the Westminster Village, in the real world, people recognise that. They might not agree but they respect it.


Blogger Shamik said...

How come it's always those who oppose 42 days or oppose the war or oppose top-up fees etc. etc. who are the principled ones?

Those of us who support the Government on this measure are equally principled, equally honourable and equally forthright in our views.

June 12, 2008 8:58 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

You miss my point entirely. A politician does something because it is a point of passionate principal - and politicos - hacks and politicians alike can't grasp it: both sides imply he's gone mad. He hasn't. But they can't see it.

If he'd resigned on principle because he wanted to support 42 days, I wonder if they would have found that easier to understand?

I applaud a man who acts on his principles, especially a senior politician.

But I'm especially glad his principles are ones I passionately support too.

June 12, 2008 9:14 pm  
Blogger Bob Bob said...


Just seen your post on Luke Akehurst's blog.

Although I have put my thoughts down on his blog, I noticed yours afterwards, and couldn't help but agree with the majority of what you said on there.

The idea of interning someone without charge is something that Hitler introduced in February 1933.

It has never worked, it has, without exception resulted in there being more terrorists willing to take their lives - George Galloway was spot on, when he said just after 9/11 that for every Bin Laden you kill, you breed a further 100 Bin Ladens.

This is what going to happen.



June 12, 2008 9:18 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

Rob, thanks. Exactly, I wrote about 18 b and 42 days in the Sunday Times, see sidebar.

I am a left-liberal and I am backing the Shadow Home secretary, it's all very bizarre.

June 12, 2008 9:34 pm  
Blogger fh said...

will have been principled people who supported the government.

But were I among those supporters, I'd like to think I would see Davis' decision as principled too. Not a stunt, and not political manouevring.

And, like Rachel, I'm shocked at the reactions of the Westminster insiders. There are Tories attacking Davis for not being a team player. There are Lib-Dems attacking their leadership for declining to oppose him. It's all about manoeuvring and tactics, with hardly a thought about any principles at all.

Let's get this cleared up. There are those of us -- on the left and on the right -- who believe there must be limits on the state's ability to detain individuals without charge. Not 6 weeks. Not the current 4 weeks. This is a principle. I think it is fundamental, more important than party politics. I probably disagree with a great deal of what Davis believes politically, but on this he gets my most whole-hearted support.

June 12, 2008 10:01 pm  
Blogger fh said...

Oops. Something got truncated there. I was trying to say to shamik that, while bribing MPs with safe seats and patronage doesn't seem very principled to me, I accept that there are principled people who support the government on this.

But were I among those suporters....etc....

June 12, 2008 10:06 pm  
Blogger DAVE BONES said...

I can't understand what resigning his seat and getting re elected is going to do for civil liberties.

June 13, 2008 1:34 am  
Blogger Karol Cross said...

Spot on Rachel,
I've just been catching up on the news and I have to say I was amazed to see so many derisory comments about DD doing this because of his ego and such like. And from across the political spectrum too.

We are indeed in strange times!

June 13, 2008 12:59 pm  

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