Freesteel Blog » London Day Friday

London Day Friday

Friday, June 15th, 2007 at 11:38 pm Written by:

After spending two days in the office of — where the on-line marketing of tiny bits of coloured paper seems to be a more economically desirable business than producing software to operate heavy CNC machine tools — being whole-heartedly ignored, I got some work done on the UN democracy project, the follow-on from public whip. London has always been a lonely city for me. After the inviter cleared off to a business trip to Europe, I moved to someone’s front living room for the afternoon, and then to some sort of a nerdy pub meet in the evening where after 2.5 beers I had a headache.

Friday was fuzzed. I trailed all the way over to Tate Modern on the south side of the Thames to look at the State Britain exhibition, only to find I was in the wrong Tate Museum. So I caught the Tate to Tate boat to the one on north side where I finally saw the installation.

I felt slightly emotional over the amazing scale that this protest had been. I was very proud because I had produced and printed off an A0-sized poster of all the votes in Parliament with excerpts from the debates and given it to Brian Haw in 2003. He displayed it for a year until it became too weather damaged, and I sent him another laminated copy in 2004. When I visited him in 2006 and reminded him who I was, I got put in touch with someone who was building this artwork and I emailed her this link to the poster so she could print it off. She said that they had attempted to recreate it from scratch and had found it impossible to do so. They were lucky to have found me. They could have always looked at the bottom of the poster where it said:

Compiled using:
Copyright free 2003

Emails to that site could have got through to me. The front desk of the gallery was unable to give me permission to photograph my uncredited copyright free work of ranting as exhibited in this high temple of art.

Luckily, the curators in the room were a more reasonable and allowed a quick snap. Artists aren’t yet as enlightened as us programmers. I wonder if they ever will be. All work is derivative, so it is immoral and regressive for one class of people to decide they are so special that they can prevent further derivation, as if their work is the final end-product, the culmination from which nothing more can be made.

While on this subject, I can confirm that one of the many MPs who voted for the invasion of Iraq is Vera Baird. In the past few years she has eaten her cake by becoming a Minister, being on the Armed Forces Committee, consistently voting that there should be no inquiry into this on-going ever-spiralling downwards pit of death and deceit, and saying on the radio:

“I wish that we could stop poisoning the well of politics now by constantly looking back over a decision which was taken now some years ago. Is there a point to doing that when we have a problem which we can’t reverse, we can’t turn history back, we now have a huge responsibility to try to ensure that Iraq comes out of what has been in the past, what may be you and I may never agree about, though it’s true to say I didn’t vote for the war. Those dichotomies will never be healed – fine.”

I can easily translate this into layman’s terms:

“No matter what happens, I am never going to apologize, so get used to it. You are never going to be governed by people who have good judgment on matters of war and peace until you get rid of sanctimonious “hard-working” morons like me. And there’s no way in this system you can do that, so piss off and stop trying to damage my reputation, which isn’t going to do anyone any good. Got me?”

MPs have gotten so used to their conflict of interest in the way that they can wield their power to cover up evidence of very poor judgment like a flock of turkeys voting against Christmas that they’re willing to quote Edmund Burke who famously addressed his electors in Bristol in 1774 after they had complained about the way he had been voting in Parliament:

Your representative owes you… his judgment; and he betrays… you if he sacrifices it to your opinion…

You choose a member, indeed; but when you have chosen him, he is not member of Bristol, but he is a member of Parliament. If the local constituent should have an interest, or should form an hasty opinion evidently opposite to the real good of the rest of the community, the member for that place ought to be as far as any other from any endeavour to give it effect.

In other words, he establishes the principle that the electorate should not have a say in the way that their elected MPs vote in Parliament.

If that’s the case, they, the MPs, have no business at all in telling us what we can say about their votes in Parliament.

Seems reasonable, doesn’t it?

If they insist that nothing we do is going to force them to vote against their “better judgment”, then we can say whatever we want, because they’ve just told us it doesn’t matter.

With power comes responsibility. With lack of power we are allowed irresponsibility. There has to be a trade-off. And sometimes I don’t think these MPs realize quite the depth of anger we hold for them, as expressed so eloquently on the tube by this gentleman here.


  • 1. Freesteel » Blog Ar&hellip replies at 12th February 2008, 2:04 pm :

    […] a summary of how the law is currently being applied, at the very least. Footnotes [1] London Day Friday freesteel blog, 15 June 2007 [2] Serious Organized Arrogance of P […]

  • 2. Freesteel&hellip replies at 3rd January 2009, 2:38 pm :

    […] 13 November 2007 – Warhol is turning in his grave The 60s pop art icons breached what we think of today as copyright law all the time when building their collages. To add insult, we now have “No Photography” signs all over the galleries which display this art. Cory wasn’t even allowed to photograph the “No Photography” signs themselves, because their typography and layout was subject to copyright! (He should have claimed to have designed the sign, although it was uncredited, and then he could have gotten away with it.) […]

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