What connection does Peter Hitchens have with the much publicised anti-BNP smear photograph that appeared in last Saturday's Independent newspaper?
No idea? Then I shall tell you.
But first things first.
Peter Hitchens is just the same as Richard Littlejohn, Melanie Phillips and Jon Gaunt. An establishment safety value whose purpose is to befriend those disillusioned with the three main political parties and empathise with their concerns.
That's it. Nothing more. They don't offer any political solution and just to safeguard their role in society they 'rubbish' the only political party that can actually change things.
At one time, back in 2006, I did have hopes that Peter Hitchens might be different. I took issue with one of his articles which denigrated the British National Party and we entered into a short correspondence. I was hoping to be able to enlighten him on the changes that had taken place within the BNP in recent years and to show him that the Party and its membership was nothing like how he described in his newspaper column.
But I'm afraid that Hitchens would have none of it.
"I know all about the British National Party. I was in Burnley and interviewed your officials there in 2002 and I know exactly what your membership is like."
Well, I was in Burnley in 2002, as campaign manager for the BNP's local election push in the town, and I certainly never met him and when I asked for further details about who he had spoken to it transpired that he hadn't met 'officials', but just one official, Steve Smith, who was then the Burnley organiser.
Now Steve was a character, I would certainly admit to that. He had just served a prison sentence for electoral fraud - filling in all ten names on a candidate's nomination form himself because there wasn't time to get the proper signatures. He wasn't worried about his appearance and would take pleasure in making controversial statements. He was a prolific leafleter, one of the best I have ever known, and used to run while making his deliveries, which didn't do much for his personal hygene.
So this is the character that Peter Hitchens is still, or certainly was in 2006, basing his evaluation of the average member of the British National Party on.
If Steve Smith was politically 'online' you could certainly have forgiven his other shortcomings, but he wasn't. He was way off beam and within 18 months had left the British National Party and set up his own organisation that spent most of its time attacking his former colleagues.
Now fast forward to last Saturday's copy of The Independent. The gentleman with the megaphone is Steve Smith, no doubt looking very much like how he would have done when he was interviewed by Peter Hitchens.
It's very unfair that Peter Hitchens equates today's membership of the British National Party with this one individual. He should of course be updating his research, but that's not what's suits him. He prefers just to have the Steve Smith image of the BNP in his mind, so that when he pens his 'nasties' about the British National Party and its membership, he can convince himself that he is telling the truth.
Many thanks to all those who have complained to Liverpool Council about the banning of my blog. This was its set answer to all those complaints.
Thanks for your email which has been passed to me to respond to.
The Library public computer network uses the International web filtering system called Fortiguard which categorises over 30 million websites into over 70 content categories and allowing unacceptable categories to be filtered. Fortiguard is one of a number of products which operate this way and is widely used in a number of countries.
Anyone can see the categories and challenge the listing directly on the Fortiguard website - http://www.fortiguardcenter.com/webfiltering/webfiltering2.html
I’ve just input the URL you mention and it is classed as ‘racism’ and ‘hate’ – categories filtered out on public library computers.
The website gives anyone the option to challenge a classification with any challenge be investigated by Fortiguard and changed if appropriate. If it is moved out of these categories it will be visible.
However this is a 'fob off' and I'm grateful to Nigel Kay for investigating this further.
He responded to Liverpool Council with this:
"Thank you for your prompt reply.
When the URL "martinwingfield.blogspot.com" is entered into the Fortiguard database, it comes back as "Category: News and Media" as of the February 18th database update, as it should. As I understand it, when this database update is applied to your filtering software, this restriction should be lifted.
Please note, as I am sure your IT department understands, that the list of categories is completely configurable by the administrator. "Racism and Hate" is a very subjective category, and it very often abused to attack and censor different political views by activists who populate these lists based on their own political agendas.
Most public computers use the barest of minimum categories to protect users from pornography, malware, and other hostile Internet sites. I would recommend that you remove the "Racism and Hate" category from your filter list to prevent political abuse.
Our local library is also struggling to implement a filtering system that balances the need to protect end users from malware and pornography, while ensuring freedom of access to information, and it is a general consensus that too much filtering can lead to political abuse."
We await their reply with interest.
And finally it's the Greasley by-election today and I'm grateful to Broxtowe organiser, Nina Brown, for this update which I received late last night. She wrote:
"As far as we know UKIP have not put any leaflets out during this campaign at all, so this shows they have nothing to offer the electorate and are there simply to act as BNP vote splitters.
"Nick Palmer, Labour MP for Broxtowe, Anna Soubry Prospective Conservative MP for Broxtowe, and Judy Mallaber, Labour MP for Amber Valley, have all been seen out canvassing in the ward, which appears to indicate that they have very few grass roots activists.
"Broxtowe Group has received over 30 enquiries for membership just from this election.
"Whilst the other parties have been campaigning on local issues such as bus routes and traffic flow, we have been campaigning on national issues with specially adapted British Jobs for British Workers leaflets, Heat or Eat leaflets and the new national glossy anti EU leaflet.
"This is a safe Tory seat, but we are hopeful of improving our vote share and closing the gap on Labour."