I am hacked off by politicians who think that a last-minute backroom deal is the proper way to resolve a critical political issue. Who think that a shabby compromise between two bad proposals makes a good proposal. Who imagine that imposing exemplary damages on those who refuse to sign up to a regulatory quango creates a freer press.
I’m hacked off by campaigners who have so little respect for free speech that they are happy to use legislation to reform libel laws as a bargaining ploy merely to get their own way on their pet project. Who cannot tell the difference between achieving justice for victims and insisting that victims must dictate legislation. Who are so dismissive of public debate that they think ‘no serious person’ disagrees with them.
I’m hacked off by liberals who who seem think that ‘it won’t turn Britain into Zimbabwe’ is sufficient reason to accept press regulation. Who seem unable to distinguish between a good press and an unfree press, or understand why it’s better to have a ‘bad’ free press than a ‘good’ unfree press. Whose pusillanimity has allowed the Murdochs, the Dacres and the Kavanaghs of this world to present themselves as warriors for free speech
Most of all, I am hacked off by liberals who cannot see what is illiberal about illiberal policies.