Livingstone gets away with it....again

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Thursday 19 October 2006 11.07am
Our 'much loved' leader "was entitled to freedom of speech" and this does extend to being abusive, in the words of Justice Collins presiding over Ken's sucksessful (sic) appeal against his bringing the office of Mayor into disrepute. I personally think the suspension was excessive but well meant (but has cost us estimated 250,000 costs now) most people agree that Ken should have apologised straight away , well at least when he sobered up. The question no-one has answered for me is who paid for the party for Chris Smith at City Hall that our Ken attended in an unnofficial capacity apparently. If it was free for Mr Smith who paid the staff that night? If City Hall paid or gave space free then it was an official sponsored Mayoral event and Ken can only fool himself that he was off duty that night. Any chance I could have a free 10th anniversary party there for living in Southwark?
Oh and since Justice Collins says it's o.k to be abusive I think Ken's a self serving, vain, sinister, waste of our money!
Thursday 19 October 2006 12.16pm
The issue of who paid the cost of this party is important for other reasons.

It has been reported in the media that the reason for the party was to celebrate the anniversary of a public servant 'coming out'. That being the case I certainly hope the party was paid for privately, and not by the publc purse.

As a taxpayer, I see no need to use public funds to celebrate the anniversary of someone announcing that they are gay. Surely this would be a frivolous waste of taxpayer's money!
Thursday 19 October 2006 12.35pm
but public money is there to be wasted, where else would it come from, however i think that the fact that he used an unfortunate choice of words should not cost him his job, his heart is in the right place, but his ears are a bit wonky, he should emply prince phillip as his pr
Thursday 19 October 2006 12.57pm
Ken was undoubtedly caught off-guard in this incident and his choice of words were unfortunate. But I'm happy he had the courage to refuse to bow to media pressure (The Evening Standard) and make a hollow apology.

IMHO Justice Collins has got it right in this case.
Thursday 19 October 2006 1.40pm
I agree that Justice Collins got it right but he also said that Ken absolutely should have apologised.
Thursday 19 October 2006 3.06pm
yes he should say sorry for a gaffe like that, I am sure that if he had known that the reporter was Jewish then he would not have thrown that particular insult, I would find it less insulting I am sure than a Jewish person would for instance, so the most naive junior diplomat would surely apologise profusely for such an error of judgement, then I think a senior politician should grovel a lot, mel gibson will be living on humble pie for years for his anti semitic rant while lashed, granted his rant was a lot more serious, he is only an actor where Ken is elected by a large polyglot society, he should be sorry and say sorry
Thursday 19 October 2006 3.37pm
I am no fan of Ken but I think it was blown way out of proportion. I may be blind but I don't see how comparing someone to a guard at Auschwitz is anti-semitic. Yes the regime was evil but I believe that a remark such as that is referring to the actions of someone who is cold, inflexible, aggressive etc.

If the intent was not to be anti-semitic but the person it was directed to was (unbeknownst to him) Jewish - it does not make either the remark or the man anti-semitic.
Thursday 19 October 2006 3.43pm
Sorry JQL to compare yourself being asked a question outside your place of work to a jewish detainee being herded into trucks to be tortured and slaughtered is offensive, to Jews and non Jews alike. I do believe Ken was sorry but too pig headed to apologise, of course this is not an unusual thing for a career politician.
Thursday 19 October 2006 5.06pm
I am not denying that the comparison is offensive...I am simply stating that it is not anti-semitic. As you state it is offensive to "Jews and non Jews alike".

I think that it was a stupid thing to say by a man who should know better but the response to it was politically and religiously motivated and overstated the position.
Friday 20 October 2006 8.12am
Yes I do agree it wasn't anti-semitic but the response and furore should not have been unpredictable to a man of his experience.
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