Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Kaminski Row warms up; should the Tory Frog clamber out of the ECR cooking pot?

The row over Dave Cameron's decision to leave the mainstream European political bloc and transfer his allegiance to a Eurosceptic groupuscule, the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) led by a homophobic holocaust sceptic, Michael Kaminski, is warming up nicely.

William Hague is in the US hoping to ramp up the Special Relationship in anticipation of being the UK's Foreign Secretary next year, talking about important things like how to prevent AfPak turning into an unmitigated disaster (as he would put it), but his US counterparts are more concerned that their chief ally in Europe has wandered off the European centre stage and is clambering into an unemptied dustbin of right wing extremists.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, "a prominent Holocaust survivor has called on the Conservative party to reconsider its alliance with Michal Kaminski, the Polish MEP who leads the Conservatives in the European parliament, citing his "unacceptable" views".

So Dave is still struggling with the Euroscepticism in his party. He gave in to them over joining the ECR, and is now picking up the pieces in a strained relationship with his prospective US bosses.

I saw in a poll yesterday (sadly unable to find it today) that the Brits are neatly divided 50/50 over whether the EU is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing. Given the massive, sustained anti-European propaganda by the Mordoch Press, and other right wing organs, this shows that on a level playing field, Europe would be welcomed by a majority of Brits.

Maybe the understanding that the US wants the UK to be at the heart of European decision making, and not at its fetid and unwashed little toe will mean that Dave will cave in, and return, tail between legs, to the European mainstream.

PS There is a sorry excuse for an interview with Michael Kaminsky on Total Politics. Kaminsky weasles his way out of any direct answer on his homophobia and racism, as you would expect from any right wing politician being interviewed by a right wing journalist. But hang on, the journalist involved is none other than Iain Dale, the UK's top blogger. Is his patsy approach anything to do with the fact that he is trying (unsuccessfully so far) to get selected as a Tory MP?

I pause for thought before hitting the Publish button, as Iain Dale runs the polling for the Blog Awards (see top right of this page). However, what is the point of blogging if any consideration of personal advancement is taken into account? Publish and be damned.


Iain Dale said...

Your point is rather undermined by the post I wrote yesterday about All women shortlists. Hey ho.

DocRichard said...

Hi Iain
My point was that your interview with M. Kaminsky had the same general tone as we might expect, say, in an interview of Rupert Murdoch conducted by the editor of, say, the Times.

You led with "What does it feel like to have become the new hate figure for the British left?"
That's like a Labour MP asking Gordon at PMQT what he is going to have for lunch.

You put the questions, he applied the flannel, you moved on to the next q. You did not ask about the Lithuania/Waffen SS embarrassment.

In your heart, Iain, you know that the alliance with the ECR is a big mistake. Even worse with Kaminski being pro-Lisbon. Maybe that means it's time for the Conservative group to move even further out into the political wilderness? (An image from Holman Hunt springs to mind). In your heart, you know that the US administration takes a dim view of Dave's decision, and this has to be a cause of concern.

But the thing about the Conservatives is your ability to whistle in the dark. I recall my Tory fellow councillors deploying Stout Denial while the Poll Tax debate was raging. You all have a pit-bull ability to hand on to your case when it is perfectly clear that you have fastened onto the wrong leg.

I cannot see how my point is undermined by the piece about all women short lists.

Ah well. Thanks for visiting, and good luck in your search for a Parliamentary seat.

Anonymous said...

All the European political blocs have got some people and parties that we here in little England see as outre. From my experience, in Poland and much of central and south eastern Europe, for example, hating gays is perfectly normal. And if you're Jewish, best to keep quiet on that in large areas too. But that's Europe for you Dr Lawson, deal with it.

As to your comment about not seeing Iain's point about whether or not he's currying favour with his political masters by what he says, well it's perfectly obvious to me. He'll criticise what he wants, whether it's all- women shortlists or Kaminski or whatever. Your point is clearly invalid, and sticking your head in the sand over that just makes you look, well, a little dense, shall we say.

DocRichard said...

Hey Nonny Nonny No

"Deal with it?" Easier said than done. I agree, attitudes to minorities in Eastern Europe are a big challenge. (pause to scratch head).

We could start with a discussion of Human Rights. The Universal Declaration of HR was drawn up immediately after WWII, and hopefully that would be a good place to start, since Eastern Europe suffered so badly in that department during and after the war.

The EU has good bits and bad bits, and one of the good bits is its emphasis on HR,so this can be exercised in building up Human Rights observance in all member states. I hope you will agree, though conservatives tend to file the Human Rights act in the Funny drawer, along with H&S. Do not lose sight of the the importance of the Universal Declaration, and its value as a levee against the flood of terror and agony that intolerance is capable of being unleashed by intolerance.

As to your comment about not seeing Iain's point about whether or not he's currying favour with his political masters by what he says, ... just makes you look, well, a little dense, shall we say.

You're right. I did miss the point. I see it now. He is disagreeing with Dave over all women shortlists, which is indeed an act of independence that may reduce his chances of being selected. Fair play to him for that.

But the fact remains that the interview with Kaminski was to say the least, pretty tame compared with what we would have got if, say, Kaminsky had been a leftist.

Still, that's politics.

Hey ho