Pro-men party has Harriet in its sights
22:29 GMT, 28 December 2012
Challenged: Male rights campaigners plan to stand against Harriet Harman and other prominent feminists at the next General Election
Male rights campaigners are setting up an anti-feminist political party and plan to stand against Harriet Harman and other prominent feminists at the next General Election.
The ‘men power’ is being orchestrated by Mike Buchanan, 55, a former business consultant who opposes tokenism and says ‘our political elite has become detached from reality with its state- sponsored feminism’.
Mr Buchanan is not some fruitcake of the Monster Raving Loony party ilk. A bookish fellow from Bath, full of statistics, he has recently given evidence to a parliamentary select committee.
He has also been interviewed on Radio 4 and has spoken at political party conference fringe events about the Establishment’s demands for more women in boardrooms.
Mr Buchanan chairs the Merit In Business campaign, which wants company directors appointed on ability rather than gender. He also argues that men’s jobs and men’s health have been imperilled by officialdom’s default feminism.
‘I now have the money in place, donated by supporters, to register a political party,’ he says.
‘Feminism is a reason for many male outcomes in modern Britain being poor. Male suicides are 3.7 times higher. More than 60 per cent of public-sector workers are women, 90 per cent of homeless people are men, 60 per cent of university students are female. For every seven people registered as unemployed, four are men.
‘Spending on diagnosing male-specific cancers is small compared with that on female- specific cancers.’
Mr Buchanan has yet to decide on a name for his party but says: ‘We will be neither Left nor Right.
Although feminism obviously has Left-wing roots, the working class has suffered most from it. Militant feminism has assaulted the family, too.’
Mr Buchanan is thinking of putting up a candidate against David Cameron. He accuses the Prime Minister of ‘pursuing the hate-filled agendas of Harriet Harman and her ilk’.
‘Female-on-male domestic violence is as common as male-on-female, yet the provision of sheltered housing for women hugely exceeds that for men,’ he says. ‘Militant feminism is largely funded by government domestic-violence grants. Yet feminists continue to moan about “the patriarchy”.’
Gay weddings in the House
Making his move: Chris Bryant is calling for a parliamentary takeover of the chapel in the Palace of Westminster – to allow gay weddings to be held there
Labour MP Chris Bryant (a former vicar) is calling for a parliamentary takeover of the historic chapel in the Palace of Westminster — to allow gay weddings to be held there.
Mr Bryant (Rhondda) is making his move following the Government’s decision to exempt the Church of England from conducting gay weddings. That will affect the Chapel of St Mary Undercroft, often known as the ‘Commons Crypt chapel’. In a Commons debate, Mr Bryant said that the chapel ‘should be handed over to all faiths’.
Since then he has changed his mind slightly. ‘I don’t think it should be multi-faith, more multi-denominational,’ he says.
‘At the moment, anyone who wants to get married in it has to get an Archbishop’s special licence. Only Anglican marriages can be conducted there. If it were passed to the ownership of the Commons then it could be registered for marriages like any other property.’
Marked for a weird present
Lord Pearson, former leader of UKIP, sent out 2,000 hardback books as Christmas presents to peers, MPs and leading thinkers. The book he chose was Geert Wilders’ Marked For Death.
Mr Wilders, a Dutch MP critical of Islamic terrorism, is under round-the-clock guard owing to death threats from Muslim extremists. Among other things, Marked For Death accuses liberals in the West of ‘downplaying the Islamic threat’. It notes how critics of Islam have been silenced and it urges the West to ‘defend itself’.
Lord Pearson says peers have given the book ‘quite a lot of positive feedback, with only two bien-pensant Liberal Democrat ladies sending it back saying they couldn’t bear to retain such ‘fascist propaganda’.
So far only one MP (Tory Sir Peter Bottomley) has thanked him for it. Two MPs have returned it anonymously. Lord Pearson has also sent the book to the head of the Muslim Council Of Britain with a hand-written letter inviting him to lunch at Whites club to talk about the issue. No response yet.
Lib Dem Sarah Teather was sacked by Nick Clegg as an Education minister in the reshuffle in September
Gordon Brown is often criticised for
failing to show his face much in the Commons since he lost office, but
he is not the only one. Lib Dem Sarah Teather (Brent Central) was sacked
by Nick Clegg as an Education minister in the reshuffle in September.
Since then she has spoken just twice in the Chamber — a grand total of
eight sentences. No doubt it is her heavy duties as chairman of the All
Party Group on Guantanamo Bay that keep her from her debating duties.
Former BBC director-general John Birt has been at his ‘blue-sky thinking’ again. Left-leaning Lord Birt has pinged in a written parliamentary question asking if the Government would consider changing the Coronation Oath. Good grief. Does he fancy his chances as Monarch
Royal Mail’s 1.1 million-a-year boss Moya Greene may have yanked up the price of stamps, but she runs a pretty incompetent operation. One in 11 of the Christmas cards we received this year arrived with the stamps unfranked. Scissors and gluepot, please. I intend to re-use them and deny Ms Greene a few quid.
Left-wingers keep coming up with
conspiracy theories about how David Cameron, hoping to please newspaper
editors, ‘reneged’ on a promise to enact the Leveson Report. It was less
pongy than that.
The heroine of the hour was Kate Fall, one of Mr
Cameron’s political aides. It was she, I am told, who looked the PM
firmly in the eye and explained to him that statutory regulation of the
Press would be an affront to Conservative principles of freedom.
Despite moans from Cabinet Secretary Jeremy Heywood (terrible control
freak), the gallant Miss Fall carried the day.
Miranda Hart was super in the Christmas Day episode of Call The Midwife — but are we entirely sure that it was Miranda Or was it her lookalike, disgraced Thick Of It actor Chris Langham
Miranda Hart (R) starred in the Christmas Day episode of Call The Midwife — but are we sure that it was her
The prize for Commons Greaser, 2012 goes to Labour MP Robert Flello (Stoke on Trent South), who in the last PMQs of the year prefaced his question with a ‘Merry Christmas, Mr Speaker’. This set off a near riot on the Tory benches, with cries of ‘are you sure’ and an ironic chorus of Jingle Bells.