Roger Whittaker

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Walter Wolfgang

Thursday 29th September 2005

The Labour Party has made a great show of apologising to Walter Wolfgang after he was physically removed from the party conference for heckling. Of course the poodle and his friends have not changed their minds and become convinced of the need for more open debate.

You can be sure that they will make sure that nothing like this ever happens again by screening people even more strictly in future and by restricting the positions where TV cameras can be placed, so that any such unfortunate incident won't get publicity.

The really scary part of this story is that after he was ejected from the hall by party stewards, the police arrested him to stop him going back in, using their powers under the Terrorism Act.

Austin Mitchell MP had his camera confiscated and his photos deleted, again under powers intended to prevent terrorism.

These are the powers which Blair and Clarke now want to strengthen drastically. The new law will make it illegal to express opinions about when the use of force might be justifiable, if those opinions do not correspond with the opinions of Mr Clarke. You can also be locked up for three months if Mr Clarke doesn't like your face.

It will also be illegal to publish material that indirectly incites terrorist acts or is likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism. That wording covers almost anything.