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Posts Tagged ‘Elections

Gullible BBC News And The BNP.

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Anyone following the activities of the BNP would know that they are suffering from numerous internal problems, thankfully.

There has been numerous splits in the BNP leadership and a financial meltdown, yet BBC News couldn’t even get that right as HOPE not hate details:

“There are always a few in the media prepared to swallow the British National Party’s statements uncritically and talk up the racist party’s electoral prospects. But we didn’t expect the chief political correspondent of BBC Radio 4 to be one of them.

Norman Smith’s article on the BBC website today reported a claim by Simon Darby, the BNP’s media spokesman, that the BNP was “not going bust” and expects to pay off its debts of more than £500,000 by the end of the year.

“BNP officials” had told Smith that the party had instituted austerity measures including laying off staff and closing its Belfast call centre. In fact the call centre, which closed several months ago, never belonged to the party.

Smith also reported a claim that there had been an increase in donations “from the party’s 12,000 members”. Searchlight’s own sources and several disaffected former BNP officers all agree that the BNP’s membership currently stands at 6,000 maximum after large numbers of disillusioned members failed to renew or defected to rival organisations.

Darby told Smith that most of the party’s debts were the result of heavy spending on the European and general elections in 2009 and 2010 rather than on its reckless court cases and that the party was cutting back on election expenditure for this year.

In fact the BNP’s head office spent a mere £30,374 on the general election. Local party units paid for the rest and their expenditure does not contribute to the party’s current debts.

In any case, all election expenditure has by law to be paid within a few weeks of an election. Is Darby claiming that the £282,843 it spent on the 2009 European election campaign still forms part of the party’s debts two years later?”

Perhaps the BBC should take out a subscription to Searchlight?

Written by modernityblog

26/04/2011 at 17:23

BNP Election Material.

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In Britain there is a local election on the 5th May 2011, the Indy covers the piss poor quality of BNP candidates:

“The BNP was last night accused of turning to “a hardcore group of neo-Nazis and racists” to stand as candidates in next month’s local elections.

The anti-BNP campaign group Hope not Hate said it had compiled a dossier of extremist postings of candidates standing on 5 May, either in council elections or those to the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly. Among the postings the group collected from Facebook pages were:

* One BNP candidate in the North of England who posted on his Facebook page a mock advert for the gas Zyklon B – used in the Nazi extermination chambers of the Second World War – captioned, “Try Zyklon B. It’s a gas!”

Overall the BNP will be fielding just over 200 candidates in next month’s elections – nearly 500 fewer than the in 2007. It said it “was having to cut its cloth” because of the amount of money it had had to spend defending a legal action against the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

Hope not Hate said: “As his party crumbles, Nick Griffin has been forced to turn to what even by BNP standards, is a hard core of neo-Nazis and racists. These are not just activists, but people Griffin is putting forward as candidates for elected public office. They are literally the best the BNP now has to offer.”

Hope not Hate, which is funded by the trades union movement, said the party had become hopelessly split – with many members defecting to the English Democrats and the breakaway party British Freedom Party. “

(H/T: Lancaster Unity)

Update 1: Another good piece from the Indy:

“The low-key launch of the BNP’s English manifesto in a deserted Stoke-on-Trent shopping street yesterday was in marked contrast to previous events held by the group in the area. In 2008 the city played host to a 300-strong BNP rally; only around 30 members turned up yesterday.

With three volunteers holding up modest Union flag backdrops to ensure they did not blow over during the speech by the deputy leader Simon Darby, and press interviews held in the corner of a giant retail centre car park, the event was notably different from last year’s general election campaign launch. Then, a man dressed as St George appeared with the leader Nick Griffin in Stoke to begin the party’s ill-fated push for a Westminster seat. Mr Griffin was unable to attend this time due to poor health, leaving the floor – or rather pavement – for Mr Darby to address his small gaggle of followers. “

Update 2: Also see HOPE not hate weekend of action.

HOPE not hate weekend of action

Written by modernityblog

19/04/2011 at 12:38

Who Really Understands It?

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I have a confession to make, despite following politics for years I could never get my head around the newer voting systems.

I suppose I’m more interested in the actual interaction of people and policies, rather than the mechanism, but I should know better. Old dog ? New tricks?

So as an aide-mémoire here’s a few pieces on the PR and various voting systems.

Proportional Representation, a backgrounder.

The single transferable vote (STV)

The additional member system (AMS)

The PR Library has a lot of material on these voting schemes.

How Proportional Representation elections work by Douglas J. Amy, a bit American but helpful in understanding some of the issues.

The Electoral Reform Society has a lot in its systems guide.

The Guardian’s guide to PR.

How proportional representation would have changed the general election 2010 result.

Unlike many others I don’t think PR is a panacea for the decline in voting and I’m a bit concerned that it could allow neofascist groupings to gain a foothold. I am still thinking about what might be the least worst alternative.

Written by modernityblog

11/05/2010 at 00:17