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The Bitch and The Terminators! UK News Review

Article by Michael Knell

Well Darlings,

It all starts off this week with a tale of two Scots. Strangely they might soon both be sharing the same nickname: The Terminator. Missed dearly since he left Noel Edmond’s “Deal or No Deal” programme this week, after his turn came and he sensibly dealt for £23,500 (I believe), is Alasdair (surname unknown to me) who earned the nickname for destroying many a person’s game by exposing a big one – if you’ll pardon the expression! Pictured on the right, he has been a breath of fresh air I’ve enjoyed catching glimpses of in the afternoons over the past few weeks. Sweeties, he could expose anything to me – to my mind that definitely warrants a breakfast! Shut-up! I can have my dreams! I guess this is where all those who get the syndicated-without-the-pictures version of this column now rush to click the link that should appear below for the genuine article to see if we agree on cute. Go for it! You won’t be disappointed!

Our second Scot, and would be terminator, is the SNP MP Angus MacNeil. Named the best Scot at Westminster in the Scottish Politician of the Year awards, and also earning the accolade of inquisitor of the year by the Spectator magazine, it was he who was responsible for resurrecting the 1925 anti-corruption Act which has led to the Metropolitan Police investigating the present cash-for-honours allegations. To be fair to Angus he too is pictured here (on the left), however possibly being not so fair, he would need to find his own morning cuppa – I wouldn’t be there!

Screaming at us from the news and political programmes on radio and television, and from most of the the newspapers, is the news that Tony Blair is likely to be interviewed under caution about the cash for peerages matter, for it is he and only he as Prime Minister who is responsible for producing the names of those to be elevated. Today Scotland Yard has revealed there have been “major developments” in the investigation; major developments which John Yates, the assistant commissioner in charge of the inquiry, is reported as saying are “not in the public domain”, despite all the recent apparent leakages.

Our Mr MacNeil has recently told BBC Radio Scotland in an interview that he believes the Prime Minister will be questioned before St Andrew’s Day, which falls on November 30th. Saint Andrew, if you didn’t already know, is the Patron Saint of Scotland. That’s a little ironic, isn’t it? We’re told the police hope to be able to forward a file to the Crown Prosecution Service in January 2007. And that’s where if this whole case is going to be dropped and swept under the carpet, it will be.

Despite all the rejoicing on the forums, I really would be surprised to see a serving prime minister of this country being tried in a court of law and possibly (depending, of course, on the actual charges) facing, if convicted, incarceration. Cash-for-honours, if proven, would be a terrible thing; a loathsome corruption – but it pars into insignificance alongside the Iraqi war and a few other things, and already Tony seems to have got away with them, although perhaps not quite scot free! (Scot free: fits well but has nothing to do with Scotland – see

Several people have written in to the Scotsman with their comments. Two I particularly found amusing were: “If Blair does end up in the slammer I’m sure it will be an education, education and an education for him,” and: “A pretty boy like Tony is going to have a tough time in the slammer.” It’s nice to be loved, isn’t it? You can enjoy the Scotsman and read more from here:

You might by now be wondering: why would I be surprised to see Tony Blair charged following this inquiry? Well, despite sometimes loving surprises, I’ve never yet seen one where the man in question was ever nailed for doing anything wrong. We may see it as wrong – fully know in our minds it is totally wrong – but he has always excused his actions by “taking full responsibility” (whatever that means, because nothing further ever becomes of it!) and by saying he did what he believed to be right; what he really thought was in the country’s best interest. And where you and I could never expect to be excused any misdemeanour by employing those words, they seem to work well for a person in charge of the country.

Should Tony say, and no doubt truly believe, that it was right to reward those people who put their hands in their pockets to support his New Labour’s almighty crusade to save the country and the world, and he did it all off his own back because of his fervent belief that such noble people should be rewarded for all their care and concern, and it happened without any underhand “deals” being done – or proven – then what grounds are there for a prosecution? Somehow I can’t see any person with one of these dubious peerages putting their hand up in a court of law and saying: “Okay, Guv – it’s a fair cop, I bought me peerage!”, can you?

I think we shall be hearing of “misguidance”, “technicalities”, and “ill-advised” in the new year, perhaps coupled with “a lack of evidence”. What’s new?

Moving on, did you see a a man has been jailed following a “web rage” attack? Paul Gibbons traced the whereabouts of John Jones after they exchanged insults in a chatroom. Armed with a pickaxe handle, and accompanied by a man with a machete, he knocked on John’s front door. Mr Jones answered the door with a knife in his hand, but in the affray that followed he was disarmed and had his neck cut. Paul Gibbons was jailed for two-and-a half years for unlawful wounding.

Jonathan Green, the defence lawyer, said Mr Jones gave the impression that he was the innocent victim in the confrontation, but his web blog didn’t back that up. He warned against the misconception that anything said in chatrooms was anonymous, and said that such a belief led to things being written which people would not normally dream of writing.

That’s certainly something for all those middle-aged heterosexual men getting off tonight by pretending to be a lesbian in a lesbian chatroom to consider as they make their advances on another member – one who could just as easily be like themselves: fat, fifty, and far from being female!

Finally, before I go, I’ve just received news that the Blackpool Pride 2007 Fundraising CDs are being released tonight, firstly at the Mardi Gras nightclub in Blackpool. Soon to be available everywhere, the details will appear on the Blackpool Pride website later tomorrow: I’ve already heard a couple of the tracks, liked them, and will be off to get my copy over the weekend. I guess the emergence of the CDs means the calendars will be appearing shortly too.

Oh dear! I remember the calendar for this year. It was good, but there was one month when the dog wouldn’t walk past it without turning to bark at the picture. Once the month had ended, I tore off the page and gave it to him. I can’t tell you on here what he did with it. Hmm…

See you next week…

“The Bitch!” 17/11/06.

About the Author

“The Bitch!”, a weekly UK News Review column, is hosted by the author and columnist Michael Knell. These articles appear on the Blackpool Gay Directory website, but are not specifically gay in content. More information on the author: and on the directory:

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