Tuesday 13 October 2009

Cry 'God for Harry, England and St George!' *

That traditional English - and British - concept of liberty has taken a bit of knock in the last few years, and now another slice has been taken away: a law firm has got an injunction stopping a newspaper (the Guardian) reporting a Parliamentary question. In other words, stopping the public from knowing what is being said in Parliament.

Thanks to the blogosphere, the question, the facts and therefore the matters the law firm (Carter-Ruck) were trying to cover up (Barclays tax-avoidance schemes and Trafigura's Nigerian pollution) have been widely disseminated. I post this - despite the Guardian's unsurprising hypocrisy in going on about tax avoidance while covering up its own tax-haven status - because:

- we should be worried at the loss of liberty;

- despite the issues over MPs' and Peers' expenses, Parliamentary freedom is important and we need the proceedings to be reported;

- as one of the leading blogs noted, the more people who know about this the better. That way the injunction is likely to be removed - and law firms are less likely to try again if the result is greater publicity than there otherwise would have been.
And apparently the application for the injunction has now been withdrawn

* Cry 'God for Harry, England and St George!'

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