Compass telling porkies about Boris

Andrew Gilligan, he of the Evening Standard, has been doing some research. He has been looking into the Compass’ own “dodgy dossier” on Boris Johnson.

Some of the examples of Boris’ “hard right wing” views were pretty weak, even on casual examination but Andrew has dug up the actual quotes that Boris made and printed them in full. It completely undermines the core point that Compass made.

Here are a few examples:

They said: Johnson “is a hard-line Right-winger … by far the most Right-wing candidate ever to be presented by a major party for Mayor of London.”

The truth is: In each of the Tory leadership contests since he became an MP, Johnson has voted for the most Left-wing of the candidates: Kenneth Clarke in 2001 and David Cameron in 2005. Johnson describes the Tory Right as “revolutionary defeatists”, the party’s “Kamikaze movement” and the “lemming tendency” and has said: “I like this stuff about there being a ‘we’ as well as a ‘me’ in politics … Toryism is not about one section of society grinding the faces of another … if we want to encourage people to win – as we do – then we must be prepared to look after the losers. We’re all in this together.”

What they said he said: “Not only did I want Bush to win, but we threw the entire weight of The Spectator behind him.”

What he said: As the use of the past tense might suggest, this is actually an extract from a piece in which Johnson bitterly regrets his support for Bush, describing him as a “cross-eyed warmonger” and “serially incompetent … maniac” whose re-election was “the most dismal awakening of my life”.

The list goes on.

Londoners will have the chance to chose our candidate for Mayor of London, they will then have the chance to compare that candidate against Ken Livingstone. It is called democracy.

Why are the left wingers so scared of it?

PS
I wonder if there is a word for the act of writing things about someone which you know to be untrue and which will cause loss or damage to the person written about?

20 responses to “Compass telling porkies about Boris

  1. It is fun reading the < HREF="http://clients.squareeye.com/uploads/compass/documents/BorisJohnsonCompassFileFINAL.pdf" REL="nofollow">Compass Dossier<> in the original format.There criticism of Boris being hard-right is based on standard Conservative party policies, so he can hardly be said to be hard-right.The more interesting parts of the Dossier refer to the Guppy incident, when Boris provided the address of a journalist to a fraudster to give him a good beating. they also provide a more fuller account of the long list of Boris’s unfortunate racist attitudes.Why do the Conservatives want somebody who is as equally unsuitable for mayor of London as Ken? It’s a shame Greg Dyke did not want the job.

  2. It is fun reading the < HREF="http://clients.squareeye.com/uploads/compass/documents/BorisJohnsonCompassFileFINAL.pdf" REL="nofollow">Compass Dossier<> in the original format.There criticism of Boris being hard-right is based on standard Conservative party policies, so he can hardly be said to be hard-right.The more interesting parts of the Dossier refer to the Guppy incident, when Boris provided the address of a journalist to a fraudster to give him a good beating. they also provide a more fuller account of the long list of Boris’s unfortunate racist attitudes.Why do the Conservatives want somebody who is as equally unsuitable for mayor of London as Ken? It’s a shame Greg Dyke did not want the job.

  3. Unfortunately Compass have completely demolished the Andrew Gilligan/Evening Standard critique. This is quoted below. For those who want to see any comments the link is (http://compassonline.org.uk/article.asp?n=838&offset=-1#comments)Compass are not surprised that The Evening Standard and its reporter Andrew Gilligan have responded to our document of quotes on Boris Johnson as both the paper and the journalist are on record as backing Boris. We are just surprised it has taken them so long. The Compass dossier was extremely comprehensive running to 17 pages with nearly 9,000 words of quotes from articles and books by Boris Johnson. The attempted technique of Andrew Gilligan is to disregard all the other material, which definitively establishes the correctness of the points made in the Compass report, and to try to concentrate attention on a few phrases. Apart from the fact even these do not bear the justification given, the fact that Gilligan is able to try to question only a tiny handful out of such a large amount of material shows how accurate the Compass report was and how clearly Boris Johnson is a supporter of the policies of the hard Tory right. Before going on to the few detailed points the article does try to dispute we may note that the Evening Standard does not attempt to deny the great bulk of the material in the Compass dossier. Among other things that means admitting: 1. Boris Johnson supported the Iraq war 2. Boris Johnson supported both the election of George W Bush in 2000 and his re-election in 2004. 3. Boris Johnson opposed the Kyoto treaty on climate change and supported George Bush’s opposition to it 4. Boris Johnson strongly supports nuclear power 5. Boris Johnson, on more than one occasion, talked about black people as ‘picaninnies’, he has referred to Africans as having ‘watermelon smiles’, and claimed that the original inhabitants of Uganda were capable of only ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’. 6. Boris Johnson said that in South Africa under Nelson Mandela there was established the ‘majority tyranny of black rule’ 7. Boris Johnson was prepared to discuss with Darius Guppy, who was later convicted of fraud, having a journalist Stuart Collier beaten up 8. Boris Johnson opposed the introduction of the national minimum wage 9. Boris Johnson opposed full pension rights for part time workers 10. Boris Johnson is against the Social Chapter of the EU and against its provision on paternity leave. 11. Boris Johnson is opposed to the congestion charge 12. Boris Johnson supports both fox and stag hunting 13. Boris Johnson opposed the repeal of Section 28 and Labour’s ‘appalling agenda’ of the teaching of homosexuality in schools’. In terms of the few detailed points made by Andrew Gilligan are wrong so they will be dealt with one by one. 1. Was Boris Johnson ‘a fanatical supporter of the Iraq war’? Boris Johnson’s support for the war in Iraq was extreme – indeed to a point that even many supporters of the war might find distasteful in its treatment of issues such Iraqis themselves. To Johnson: ‘It was mesmerising, in April 2003, to stand in Baghdad and look at the contrast between the Americans and the people they had liberated. The Iraqis were skinny and dark, badly dressed and fed. The Americans rode in their Humvees (a vehicle that is eloquently bigger than our Land Rover: more slouching, bigger tyred, cooler). The marines had the shades with the slick little nick in the corner. They were taller and squarer than the indigenous people, with heavier chins and better dentition. They looked like a master race from outer space, or something from the pages of Judge Dredd… ‘But as I looked at the American effort, at the vast caravanserai of victualling lorries, I felt a real sense of awe. Saddam may have turned out to be a papier mache dictator. But it was still an astonishing military achievement to remove him with so few casualties on either side; and the political achievement was still greater.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p1) And ‘‘If we know the Pentagon, there must be a very good chance that this will be an outstandingly successful and stress-free war, with computerised drones queuing up over Baghdad and Basra to pulverise the relevant silos and barracks.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p363) The positions taken by Johnson (‘outstandingly successful and stress free war’, ‘so few casualties on either side’) are entirely refuted by the facts. The type of language used makes clear that it is entirely accurate to say Boris Johnson was a ‘fanatical supporter of the Iraq war’. That he later regarded the war as a mistake was after a minimum of tens of thousands, and more probably hundreds of thousands of people were dead. We do not want a Mayor who makes catastrophic errors and then apologises. We want one who takes the right decisions at the time. Ken Livingstone, of course, opposed the Iraq war strongly from day one – showing his altogether superior judgement. 2. Support for George W Bush? Andrew Gilligan claims that Boris Johnson came to regret his support for George W Bush. Once more that was entirely too late. Boris Johnson naturally criticised George W Bush but he unequivocally supported not only his election in 2000 but his re-election in 2004 – which is the decisive issue. Indeed Boris Johnson gave the Iraq war as the decisive reason for supporting the re-election of Bush. ‘That is the best case for Bush; that, among other things, he liberated Iraq. It is good enough for me.’ (Daily Telegraph 26 February 2004) 3. A fanatical Thatcherite? Andrew Gilligan claim to ‘correct’ a paragraph in the report on Thatcher. Unfortunately he leaves out the final word. The passage he claims to correct reads: ‘There is no need here to rehearse the steps of the matricide. Howe pounced. Heseltine did his stuff. After it was all over, my wife, Marina, claimed that she came upon me, stumbling down a street in Brussels, tears in my eyes, and claiming that it was as if someone had shot Nanny. I dispute this, naturally’ (Lend Me Your Ears p13) The word ‘naturally’, which Andrew Gilligan omitted, indicates clearly that Boris Johnson’s defence is pretty mock and he is admitting that his wife more or less accurately summarised the situation. But actually it doesn’t matter. Boris Johnson described Margaret Thatcher as: ‘this century’s greatest peace time prime minister.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p132).Someone who considers Margaret Thatcher Britain’s’ greatest peace time prime minister’ is self-evidently a very strong Thatcherite. 4. On sacking large numbers of public sector workers Boris Johnson says of public sector workers that: ‘that is why we must explain to them why their dismissal could be good not only for the economy as a whole, but also for themselves… It is also worth reiterating that many of these jobs are the result of reckless legislation and regulation: if you endlessly pass pointless health ‘n’ safety law, you will need pointless compliance officers, and so on. (Daily Telegraph 2 December 2004) 5. On grammar schools Again Andrew Gilligan’s ‘change’ doesn’t make any difference. Boris Johnson gave as one of his key reasons for voting against the Labour Party in 1997 defence of grammar schools. ‘Golly it occurs to you: no more minimum wage …You close your eyes, and then you remember that the Social Chapter won’t be coming into force after all. Hmm. None of that mandatory four week holiday for the staff, none of that ridiculously compulsory paid paternity leave, none of those extra non-wage costs…. And then another happy thought strikes you. Your children are at a local grammar school, and you had been dreading that Labour imposed ballot about abolishing selective admissions.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p104)Someone who gives as one of their main reasons for voting against Labour being to maintain grammar schools is a strong supporter of them. Boris Johnson’s conception of education is even stronger when he attacks Labour for cancelling the assisted places scheme for public schools to aid young people on the dole: ‘He [Blair] wanted to scrap the assisted places scheme. The £100 million raised by this petty mutilation, by which the Fettesian will deprive thousands of children of the chance he had at an independent school, is to be used to take 250,000 youngsters off the dole and put them into makework schemes of moss-picking and origami.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p117) Boris can’t help saying unpopular things, presumably because he believes them to be true, and then has to try and cover them up or apologises for them. We published the report because we wanted every citizen in the Capital to be aware of the likely Mayoral contest next May – between a progressive in Ken Livingstone and a regressive in Boris Johnson. The nature of that challenge is clearer today than it was when we first published the document.

  4. Unfortunately Compass have completely demolished the Andrew Gilligan/Evening Standard critique. This is quoted below. For those who want to see any comments the link is (http://compassonline.org.uk/article.asp?n=838&offset=-1#comments)Compass are not surprised that The Evening Standard and its reporter Andrew Gilligan have responded to our document of quotes on Boris Johnson as both the paper and the journalist are on record as backing Boris. We are just surprised it has taken them so long. The Compass dossier was extremely comprehensive running to 17 pages with nearly 9,000 words of quotes from articles and books by Boris Johnson. The attempted technique of Andrew Gilligan is to disregard all the other material, which definitively establishes the correctness of the points made in the Compass report, and to try to concentrate attention on a few phrases. Apart from the fact even these do not bear the justification given, the fact that Gilligan is able to try to question only a tiny handful out of such a large amount of material shows how accurate the Compass report was and how clearly Boris Johnson is a supporter of the policies of the hard Tory right. Before going on to the few detailed points the article does try to dispute we may note that the Evening Standard does not attempt to deny the great bulk of the material in the Compass dossier. Among other things that means admitting: 1. Boris Johnson supported the Iraq war 2. Boris Johnson supported both the election of George W Bush in 2000 and his re-election in 2004. 3. Boris Johnson opposed the Kyoto treaty on climate change and supported George Bush’s opposition to it 4. Boris Johnson strongly supports nuclear power 5. Boris Johnson, on more than one occasion, talked about black people as ‘picaninnies’, he has referred to Africans as having ‘watermelon smiles’, and claimed that the original inhabitants of Uganda were capable of only ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’. 6. Boris Johnson said that in South Africa under Nelson Mandela there was established the ‘majority tyranny of black rule’ 7. Boris Johnson was prepared to discuss with Darius Guppy, who was later convicted of fraud, having a journalist Stuart Collier beaten up 8. Boris Johnson opposed the introduction of the national minimum wage 9. Boris Johnson opposed full pension rights for part time workers 10. Boris Johnson is against the Social Chapter of the EU and against its provision on paternity leave. 11. Boris Johnson is opposed to the congestion charge 12. Boris Johnson supports both fox and stag hunting 13. Boris Johnson opposed the repeal of Section 28 and Labour’s ‘appalling agenda’ of the teaching of homosexuality in schools’. In terms of the few detailed points made by Andrew Gilligan are wrong so they will be dealt with one by one. 1. Was Boris Johnson ‘a fanatical supporter of the Iraq war’? Boris Johnson’s support for the war in Iraq was extreme – indeed to a point that even many supporters of the war might find distasteful in its treatment of issues such Iraqis themselves. To Johnson: ‘It was mesmerising, in April 2003, to stand in Baghdad and look at the contrast between the Americans and the people they had liberated. The Iraqis were skinny and dark, badly dressed and fed. The Americans rode in their Humvees (a vehicle that is eloquently bigger than our Land Rover: more slouching, bigger tyred, cooler). The marines had the shades with the slick little nick in the corner. They were taller and squarer than the indigenous people, with heavier chins and better dentition. They looked like a master race from outer space, or something from the pages of Judge Dredd… ‘But as I looked at the American effort, at the vast caravanserai of victualling lorries, I felt a real sense of awe. Saddam may have turned out to be a papier mache dictator. But it was still an astonishing military achievement to remove him with so few casualties on either side; and the political achievement was still greater.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p1) And ‘‘If we know the Pentagon, there must be a very good chance that this will be an outstandingly successful and stress-free war, with computerised drones queuing up over Baghdad and Basra to pulverise the relevant silos and barracks.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p363) The positions taken by Johnson (‘outstandingly successful and stress free war’, ‘so few casualties on either side’) are entirely refuted by the facts. The type of language used makes clear that it is entirely accurate to say Boris Johnson was a ‘fanatical supporter of the Iraq war’. That he later regarded the war as a mistake was after a minimum of tens of thousands, and more probably hundreds of thousands of people were dead. We do not want a Mayor who makes catastrophic errors and then apologises. We want one who takes the right decisions at the time. Ken Livingstone, of course, opposed the Iraq war strongly from day one – showing his altogether superior judgement. 2. Support for George W Bush? Andrew Gilligan claims that Boris Johnson came to regret his support for George W Bush. Once more that was entirely too late. Boris Johnson naturally criticised George W Bush but he unequivocally supported not only his election in 2000 but his re-election in 2004 – which is the decisive issue. Indeed Boris Johnson gave the Iraq war as the decisive reason for supporting the re-election of Bush. ‘That is the best case for Bush; that, among other things, he liberated Iraq. It is good enough for me.’ (Daily Telegraph 26 February 2004) 3. A fanatical Thatcherite? Andrew Gilligan claim to ‘correct’ a paragraph in the report on Thatcher. Unfortunately he leaves out the final word. The passage he claims to correct reads: ‘There is no need here to rehearse the steps of the matricide. Howe pounced. Heseltine did his stuff. After it was all over, my wife, Marina, claimed that she came upon me, stumbling down a street in Brussels, tears in my eyes, and claiming that it was as if someone had shot Nanny. I dispute this, naturally’ (Lend Me Your Ears p13) The word ‘naturally’, which Andrew Gilligan omitted, indicates clearly that Boris Johnson’s defence is pretty mock and he is admitting that his wife more or less accurately summarised the situation. But actually it doesn’t matter. Boris Johnson described Margaret Thatcher as: ‘this century’s greatest peace time prime minister.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p132).Someone who considers Margaret Thatcher Britain’s’ greatest peace time prime minister’ is self-evidently a very strong Thatcherite. 4. On sacking large numbers of public sector workers Boris Johnson says of public sector workers that: ‘that is why we must explain to them why their dismissal could be good not only for the economy as a whole, but also for themselves… It is also worth reiterating that many of these jobs are the result of reckless legislation and regulation: if you endlessly pass pointless health ‘n’ safety law, you will need pointless compliance officers, and so on. (Daily Telegraph 2 December 2004) 5. On grammar schools Again Andrew Gilligan’s ‘change’ doesn’t make any difference. Boris Johnson gave as one of his key reasons for voting against the Labour Party in 1997 defence of grammar schools. ‘Golly it occurs to you: no more minimum wage …You close your eyes, and then you remember that the Social Chapter won’t be coming into force after all. Hmm. None of that mandatory four week holiday for the staff, none of that ridiculously compulsory paid paternity leave, none of those extra non-wage costs…. And then another happy thought strikes you. Your children are at a local grammar school, and you had been dreading that Labour imposed ballot about abolishing selective admissions.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p104)Someone who gives as one of their main reasons for voting against Labour being to maintain grammar schools is a strong supporter of them. Boris Johnson’s conception of education is even stronger when he attacks Labour for cancelling the assisted places scheme for public schools to aid young people on the dole: ‘He [Blair] wanted to scrap the assisted places scheme. The £100 million raised by this petty mutilation, by which the Fettesian will deprive thousands of children of the chance he had at an independent school, is to be used to take 250,000 youngsters off the dole and put them into makework schemes of moss-picking and origami.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p117) Boris can’t help saying unpopular things, presumably because he believes them to be true, and then has to try and cover them up or apologises for them. We published the report because we wanted every citizen in the Capital to be aware of the likely Mayoral contest next May – between a progressive in Ken Livingstone and a regressive in Boris Johnson. The nature of that challenge is clearer today than it was when we first published the document.

  5. In his addition to his attempt today to defend Boris Johnson James Cleverly has also attempted to defend the reference by Boris Johnson to black people as ‘picanninies’. He wrote on 4 August:‘It saddens me to see Dawn Butler and Diane Abbott using the racist label when they both know it not to be true. The article they use to prove his “racism” was clearly written in an Alf Garnettesque style to parody the patronising, racist attitude that he is being accused of. Even the Guardian conceded that the phrase was used “presumably for stylistic effect”.’ (http://jamescleverly.blogspot.com/)However Boris Johnson did not just use the language of ‘picaninnies’ once. Here is the passage Dawn Butler and Diane Abbott referred to : ‘What a relief it must be for Blair to get out of England. It is said that the Queen has come to love the Commonwealth, partly because it supplies her with regular cheering crowds of flag-waving picaninnies; and one can imagine that Blair, twice victor abroad but enmired at home, is similarly seduced by foreign politeness.‘They say he is shortly off to the Congo. No doubt the AK47s will fall silent, and the pangas will stop their hacking of human flesh, and the tribal warriors will all break out in watermelon smiles to see the big white chief touch down in his big white British taxpayer-funded bird.’ (Daily Telegraph 10 January 2002)This passage is not at all pleasant – including also the reference to ‘watermelon smiles’ about Africans.But it is not the only time Boris Johnson used this:’ Rod Liddle recalls that when he and Johnson went to Uganda together to look at the work of Unicef, Johnson cheerily remarked to the Swedish Unicef workers and their black driver: “Right, let’s go and look at some more picaninnies.”’ (The Observer Sunday October 5, 2003)Nor is this type of vocabulory the only comment of Boris Johnson on Africa. Here is what he had to say on another African country for example: ‘The problem is not that we were once in charge, but that we are not in charge any more… Consider Uganda, pearl of Africa, as an example of the British record. … the British planted coffee and cotton and tobacco, and they were broadly right… If left to their own devices, the natives would rely on nothing but the instant carbohydrate gratification of the plantain.’ (Spectator 2 February 2002)And as James Cleverly praised the Mandela statue on Trafalgar Square here is what Boris Johnson had to say about South Africa after apartheid and when Nelson Mandela was president: ‘‘Mandela never accepted the Swiss-style constitution he [de Klerk] proposed; and last year, fed up with being marginalized, de Klerk quit the government. He must have known that this would happen, that the minority tyranny of apartheid would be followed by the majority tyranny of black rule.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p464)So we do not have one throw away Boris Johnson remark about ‘picaninnies’ – although that type of vocabulary actually has no place in anything at all. But we have ‘picaninnies’ used more than once including in front of a black driver. References to Ugandans as the natives, left to their own devices, would rely on nothing but ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’ and that in South Africa under Mandela there existed: ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’.Therefore direct question to James Cleverly:1. Is it acceptable to refer, and more than once, to black people as ‘picaninnies’? And Africans as having ‘water melon smiles’?2. Were Ugandan ‘natives’ capable only of ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’?3. Was South Africa under Mandela an example of ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’?And will you therefore please stop pretending that we are dealing only with a single remark of Boris Johnson made ‘ironically’.

  6. In his addition to his attempt today to defend Boris Johnson James Cleverly has also attempted to defend the reference by Boris Johnson to black people as ‘picanninies’. He wrote on 4 August:‘It saddens me to see Dawn Butler and Diane Abbott using the racist label when they both know it not to be true. The article they use to prove his “racism” was clearly written in an Alf Garnettesque style to parody the patronising, racist attitude that he is being accused of. Even the Guardian conceded that the phrase was used “presumably for stylistic effect”.’ (http://jamescleverly.blogspot.com/)However Boris Johnson did not just use the language of ‘picaninnies’ once. Here is the passage Dawn Butler and Diane Abbott referred to : ‘What a relief it must be for Blair to get out of England. It is said that the Queen has come to love the Commonwealth, partly because it supplies her with regular cheering crowds of flag-waving picaninnies; and one can imagine that Blair, twice victor abroad but enmired at home, is similarly seduced by foreign politeness.‘They say he is shortly off to the Congo. No doubt the AK47s will fall silent, and the pangas will stop their hacking of human flesh, and the tribal warriors will all break out in watermelon smiles to see the big white chief touch down in his big white British taxpayer-funded bird.’ (Daily Telegraph 10 January 2002)This passage is not at all pleasant – including also the reference to ‘watermelon smiles’ about Africans.But it is not the only time Boris Johnson used this:’ Rod Liddle recalls that when he and Johnson went to Uganda together to look at the work of Unicef, Johnson cheerily remarked to the Swedish Unicef workers and their black driver: “Right, let’s go and look at some more picaninnies.”’ (The Observer Sunday October 5, 2003)Nor is this type of vocabulory the only comment of Boris Johnson on Africa. Here is what he had to say on another African country for example: ‘The problem is not that we were once in charge, but that we are not in charge any more… Consider Uganda, pearl of Africa, as an example of the British record. … the British planted coffee and cotton and tobacco, and they were broadly right… If left to their own devices, the natives would rely on nothing but the instant carbohydrate gratification of the plantain.’ (Spectator 2 February 2002)And as James Cleverly praised the Mandela statue on Trafalgar Square here is what Boris Johnson had to say about South Africa after apartheid and when Nelson Mandela was president: ‘‘Mandela never accepted the Swiss-style constitution he [de Klerk] proposed; and last year, fed up with being marginalized, de Klerk quit the government. He must have known that this would happen, that the minority tyranny of apartheid would be followed by the majority tyranny of black rule.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p464)So we do not have one throw away Boris Johnson remark about ‘picaninnies’ – although that type of vocabulary actually has no place in anything at all. But we have ‘picaninnies’ used more than once including in front of a black driver. References to Ugandans as the natives, left to their own devices, would rely on nothing but ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’ and that in South Africa under Mandela there existed: ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’.Therefore direct question to James Cleverly:1. Is it acceptable to refer, and more than once, to black people as ‘picaninnies’? And Africans as having ‘water melon smiles’?2. Were Ugandan ‘natives’ capable only of ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’?3. Was South Africa under Mandela an example of ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’?And will you therefore please stop pretending that we are dealing only with a single remark of Boris Johnson made ‘ironically’.

  7. Anon,Your criticism of Andrew Gilligan is that he took a large body of work and used only a small part of it to prove his point.This is in defence of Compass who took almost 20 years of Boris’ political writing, used a small number of out of context and selectively edited quotes to attack a potential candidate for Mayor of London.People in glass houses……

  8. Anon,Your criticism of Andrew Gilligan is that he took a large body of work and used only a small part of it to prove his point.This is in defence of Compass who took almost 20 years of Boris’ political writing, used a small number of out of context and selectively edited quotes to attack a potential candidate for Mayor of London.People in glass houses……

  9. I think the context of Boris’s comments are made very clear in the Compass report. It is you who is taking a single line from the report (admittedly the conclusion) and taking in out of the context of Boris’s career. I see Boris’s views are consistent with mainstream Tory thinking over the last 25 years, so Boris is no more part of the hard-right than anybody else in the Tory party. Of course Compass are going to see these views as hard right.Cameron has now moved the Tory party back to the centre, for a little while, so obviously any Tory activist from the 1980s or 1990s is going to look a bit hard right-wing. But Boris’s offensive statements regarding people of different races, cultures, and nationalities have no place in the modern Conservative Party, and certainly not in the leadership of London.It is a shame you don’t spend more time telling us about the positive aspects of the other, more worthy, Conservative mayoral candidates rather than defending the one candidate who would be worse for London than ‘Red Ken’. The idea of hosting the Olympics in London with a racist buffoon as mayor should appal every right thinking Londoner.

  10. I think the context of Boris’s comments are made very clear in the Compass report. It is you who is taking a single line from the report (admittedly the conclusion) and taking in out of the context of Boris’s career. I see Boris’s views are consistent with mainstream Tory thinking over the last 25 years, so Boris is no more part of the hard-right than anybody else in the Tory party. Of course Compass are going to see these views as hard right.Cameron has now moved the Tory party back to the centre, for a little while, so obviously any Tory activist from the 1980s or 1990s is going to look a bit hard right-wing. But Boris’s offensive statements regarding people of different races, cultures, and nationalities have no place in the modern Conservative Party, and certainly not in the leadership of London.It is a shame you don’t spend more time telling us about the positive aspects of the other, more worthy, Conservative mayoral candidates rather than defending the one candidate who would be worse for London than ‘Red Ken’. The idea of hosting the Olympics in London with a racist buffoon as mayor should appal every right thinking Londoner.

  11. James,Far from Boris Johson being quoted out of context the reality is he is fully in context – as the quotes given above show. As was written:1. Is it acceptable to refer, and more than once, as Boris Johnson does to black people as ‘picaninnies’? And Africans as having ‘water melon smiles’?2. Were, as Boris Johnson wrote, Ugandan ‘natives’ capable only of ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’?3. Was South Africa under Mandela an example of ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’?Far from the Evening Standard ‘refuting’ the Compass Report it was so scared of criticism by its readers that it shut down online comment and examination by readers of Andrew Gilligan’s article after only two hours and has not reoponed it since. The following post updated from Compass shows what happened.ChronologyApprox 10am 31st August. Evening Standard appears with Andrew Gilligan article claiming to ‘refute’ Compass report on Boris Johnson together with a supporting editorial.Approx 11am 31st August. Compass posts on its website a reply to the Evening Standard. It points out that the article and editorial have not be placed online by the Evening Standard, and challenges it to do so in order that readers can examine it. This challenge is picked up online.Approx 2pm. Evening Standard places Andrew Gilligan article online and allows comments. (http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23410465-details/How%20Boris%20quotes%20were%20spun/article.do?expand=true#StartComments)Approx 3.30 pm Gavin Hayes of Compass posts comments recommending Evening Standard readers to read the whole Compass report and giving a link to it. The Evening Standard removes the link.Approx 4pm. Evening Standard stops taking comments on its website (despite the fact it says ‘Add your comment). It is known that people are posting to it as a number of people attempting to post comments to the Evening Standard also post them to the Compass website – which puts them up.2nd September 4.30 pm – Evening Standard website remains firmly closed for comments, as it has been since 4pm the day before, on the Andrew Gilligan article.The fact that the Evening Standard had to stop that examination of course shows that the Compass report on Boris Johnson was accurate and the Evening Standard ‘critique’ won’t stand examination. And if anyone claims that the Evening Standard ‘refuted’ the Compass Report just point out that it was so unable to stand up to online examination that they had to block posts to it after only two hours because it was being taken apart by their readers.Boris Johnson briefs the Sunday Telegraph today that he will be the ‘unity’ candidate for London. The idea that someone who who refers to black people as picaninnies, who opposed the national minimum wage, opposed the Kyoto treaty on climate change, and refers to South Africa under Nelson Mandel as ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’ can unite London is a ridiculous joke.And James you won’t be able to go through nine months of a campaign claiming that Boris Johnson’s comments were ‘out of context’ because they were not. You will only damage your own reputation for integrity. Better for that to stop trying to defend the indefensible right at the beginning.PS will James Cleverly call for the Evening Standard to open their site for online examination of Andrew Gilligan’s article? If he won’t then people can forget about his assertion both that the Evening Standard has ‘refuted’ the Compass dossier and that Boris Johnson was quoted out of context.

  12. James,Far from Boris Johson being quoted out of context the reality is he is fully in context – as the quotes given above show. As was written:1. Is it acceptable to refer, and more than once, as Boris Johnson does to black people as ‘picaninnies’? And Africans as having ‘water melon smiles’?2. Were, as Boris Johnson wrote, Ugandan ‘natives’ capable only of ‘instant carbohydrate gratification’?3. Was South Africa under Mandela an example of ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’?Far from the Evening Standard ‘refuting’ the Compass Report it was so scared of criticism by its readers that it shut down online comment and examination by readers of Andrew Gilligan’s article after only two hours and has not reoponed it since. The following post updated from Compass shows what happened.ChronologyApprox 10am 31st August. Evening Standard appears with Andrew Gilligan article claiming to ‘refute’ Compass report on Boris Johnson together with a supporting editorial.Approx 11am 31st August. Compass posts on its website a reply to the Evening Standard. It points out that the article and editorial have not be placed online by the Evening Standard, and challenges it to do so in order that readers can examine it. This challenge is picked up online.Approx 2pm. Evening Standard places Andrew Gilligan article online and allows comments. (http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23410465-details/How%20Boris%20quotes%20were%20spun/article.do?expand=true#StartComments)Approx 3.30 pm Gavin Hayes of Compass posts comments recommending Evening Standard readers to read the whole Compass report and giving a link to it. The Evening Standard removes the link.Approx 4pm. Evening Standard stops taking comments on its website (despite the fact it says ‘Add your comment). It is known that people are posting to it as a number of people attempting to post comments to the Evening Standard also post them to the Compass website – which puts them up.2nd September 4.30 pm – Evening Standard website remains firmly closed for comments, as it has been since 4pm the day before, on the Andrew Gilligan article.The fact that the Evening Standard had to stop that examination of course shows that the Compass report on Boris Johnson was accurate and the Evening Standard ‘critique’ won’t stand examination. And if anyone claims that the Evening Standard ‘refuted’ the Compass Report just point out that it was so unable to stand up to online examination that they had to block posts to it after only two hours because it was being taken apart by their readers.Boris Johnson briefs the Sunday Telegraph today that he will be the ‘unity’ candidate for London. The idea that someone who who refers to black people as picaninnies, who opposed the national minimum wage, opposed the Kyoto treaty on climate change, and refers to South Africa under Nelson Mandel as ‘the majority tyranny of black rule’ can unite London is a ridiculous joke.And James you won’t be able to go through nine months of a campaign claiming that Boris Johnson’s comments were ‘out of context’ because they were not. You will only damage your own reputation for integrity. Better for that to stop trying to defend the indefensible right at the beginning.PS will James Cleverly call for the Evening Standard to open their site for online examination of Andrew Gilligan’s article? If he won’t then people can forget about his assertion both that the Evening Standard has ‘refuted’ the Compass dossier and that Boris Johnson was quoted out of context.

  13. Here I am spending all day trying to write a website to shine a bit of light on all this smearing of Boris and you ain’t being very helpful James.I wanted to link to this post, but you’ve hyperlinked the title to thisislondon’s website!

  14. Here I am spending all day trying to write a website to shine a bit of light on all this smearing of Boris and you ain’t being very helpful James.I wanted to link to this post, but you’ve hyperlinked the title to thisislondon’s website!

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