Sunday, September 23, 2007

BritBlog Roundup 136

Story of the Week

Bloggerheads and Craig Murray's blog have been down for several days following action by lawyers acting on behalf of the Uzbek billionaire Alisher Usmanov. A number of other notable blogs, including those written by Bob Piper and Boris Johnson, have also disappeared, as action has been threatened against the server hosting the blogs rather than the individual writers.

The best place to keep up with developments in this sorry affair is Chicken Yoghurt. The Yoghurt carries a list of the people who have blogged about it. It currently totals 193:

Curious Hamster, Pickled Politics, Harry’s Place, Tim Worstall, Dizzy, Iain Dale, Ten Percent, Blairwatch, Davide Simonetti, Earthquake Cove, Turbulent Cleric (who suggests dropping a line to the FA about Mr Usmanov), Mike Power, Jailhouse Lawyer, Suesam, Devil’s Kitchen, The Cartoonist, Falco, Casualty Monitor, Forever Expat, Arseblog, Drink-soaked Trots (and another), Pitch Invasion, Wonko’s World, Roll A Monkey, Caroline Hunt, Westminster Wisdom, Chris K, Anorak, Mediawatchwatch, Norfolk Blogger, Chris Paul, Indymedia (with a list of Craig Murray’s articles that are currently unavailable), Obsolete, Tom Watson, Cynical Chatter, Reactionary Snob, Mr Eugenides, Matthew Sinclair, The Select Society, Liberal England, Davblog, Peter Gasston Pitch Perfect, Adelaide Green Porridge Cafe, Lunartalks, Tygerland, The Crossed Pond, Our Kingdom, Big Daddy Merk, Daily Mail Watch, Graeme’s, Random Thoughts, Nosemonkey, Matt Wardman, Politics in the Zeros, Love and Garbage, The Huntsman, Conservative Party Reptile, Ellee Seymour, Sabretache, Not A Sheep, Bartholomew’s Notes on Religion, The People’s Republic Of Newport, Life, the Universe & Everything, Arsenal Transfer Rumour Mill, The Green Ribbon, Blood & Treasure, The Last Ditch, Areopagitica, Football in Finland, An Englishman’s Castle, Freeborn John, Eursoc, The Back Four, Rebellion Suck!, Ministry of Truth, ModernityBlog, Beau Bo D’Or, Scots and Independent, The Splund, Bill Cameron, Podnosh, Dodgeblogium, Moving Target, Serious Golmal, Goonerholic, The Spine, Zero Point Nine, Lenin’s Tomb, The Durruti Column, The Bristol Blogger, ArseNews, David Lindsay, Quaequam Blog!, On A Quiet Day…, Kathz’s Blog, England Expects, Theo Spark, Duncan Borrowman, Senn’s Blog, Katykins, Jewcy, Kevin Maguire, Stumbling and Mumbling, Famous for 15 megapixels, Ordovicius, Tom Morris, AOL Fanhouse, Doctor Vee, The Curmudgeonly, The Poor Mouth, 1820, Hangbitch, Crooked Timber, ArseNole, Identity Unknown, Liberty Alone, Amused Cynicism, Clairwil, The Lone Voice, Tampon Teabag, Unoriginalname38, Special/Blown It, The Remittance Man, 18 Doughty Street, Laban Tall, Martin Bright, Spy Blog The Exile, poons, Jangliss, Who Knows Where Thoughts Come From?, Imagined Community, A Pint of Unionist Lite, Poldraw, Disillusioned And Bored, Error Gorilla, Indigo Jo, Swiss Metablog, Kate Garnwen Truemors, Asn14, D-Notice, The Judge, Political Penguin, Miserable Old Fart, Jottings, fridgemagnet, Blah Blah Flowers, J. Arthur MacNumpty, Tony Hatfield, Grendel, Charlie Whitaker, Matt Buck, The Waendel Journal, Marginalized Action Dinosaur, SoccerLens, Toblog, John Brissenden East Lower, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Peter Black AM, Boing Boing, BLTP, Gunnerblog, LFB UK, Liberal Revolution, Wombles, Focus on Sodbury…, Follow The Money, Freedom and Whisky, Melting Man, PoliticalHackUK, Simon Says…, Daily EM, From The Barrel of a Gun, The Fourth Place, The Armchair News Blog, Journalist und Optimist, Bristol Indymedia, Dave Weeden, Up North John, Gizmonaut, Spin and Spinners, Marginalia, Arnique, Heather Yaxley, The Whiskey Priest, On The Beat, Paul Canning, Martin Stabe, Mat Bowles, Pigdogfucker, Rachel North (193).

As Tim Worstall observes, if his lawyers were aiming to keep Mr Usmanov and his record out of the limelight, their action has not proved an unqualified success.

Green Banana and Ministry of Truth offer thoughtful accounts of why this affair matters. If you want to join the campaign on your own blog, Poliblog Perspective has produced some campaign buttons you can use.

It happens that I heard Craig Murray speak at the Lib Dem Conference last week. Geoff Payne was there too.

Another good way of fighting back would be to buy Craig's book Murder in Samarkand.


Settle down school. Tompkins, see me afterwards.

Tim Worstall's blog has moved home and can now be found here.

Clairwil is doing a roundup of her very own. You can find the first one here.


What is the most graceful way to handle things when you decide to close a blog down? Matt Wardman tells you.

And Media Influencer takes on Andrew Keen, a prominent critic of blogging.

Jose Mourinho

A Chelsea fan since I was so high, I am typing this section through my tears.

Arserant pays generous tribute to the Special One, but Blood and Treasure is less impressed.

K T Dodge crows that Mourinho's departure will be good for her team, Arsenal. I wish her joy with Mr Usmanov.

Liberal Democrat Conference

For the second time a Liberal Democrat Blog of the Year was made at Conferernce. And for the second time this blog was nominated but failed to win it. A total of six awards were made: Millennium Elephant gives a characteristically idiosyncratic account of the event.

The six short-listed bloggers for the top award also got to meet Ming the Merciless. The Emperor's own site has some pictures and Blog of the Year Quaequam Blog! wrote up the occasion.

Curious Snippets from a Cynical Optimist asks what the point of the Lib Dems is, showing how divided the party is on policy. Well, with that and continuing grumbling about the leadership, we look like a proper party to me.


Dr Rays Focal Spot attended an NHS "consultation" exercise featuring Gordon Brown, Alan Johnson and Ara Darzi. He was less than impressed:

I can only say that the way the voting was done makes the "Blue Peter" voting fraud seem like, well, "Blue Peter".
The Devil's Kitchen writes about this too.

The Yorkshire Ranter suggests a better way of developing healthcare computer systems than the one the NHS uses at present. Squander Two Blog finds the British Heart Federation and the Daily Mail talking bollocks on peope's willingness to take exercise. No surprise there, in one case at least.

Rhetorically Speaking has no doubts about genetic screening for Alzheimer's disease.

Sexual Politics

Mind the Gap! finds two Guardian articles taking a simplistic view of sexuality. Stroppy Blog offers a qualified defence of Tarantino's new film Death Proof.

Guesting at Humaniform, Ruthie Zaftig reports how she broke up an anti-abortion demonstration.

And Mick Hartley puts the boot into Dr Freud magnificently:

As a good well-educated girl, shy and obedient, it may be doubted that the young Anna did in fact spend so much energy fiercely masturbating over fantasies connected with her father, only to forget all about them. Freudian dogma, however, demanded that such was the case. It is, of course, a happy male fantasy that women, underneath the demure exterior, are really sex-crazed. How much more exciting for Freud, then, to slowly force these supposed memories from his daughter's Unconscious, revealing that the old goat himself, her father, was the everlasting object of her lust. And, crucially and most disgracefully, poor Anna was in no position to do as Dora did, and walk away in disgust. As Freud's daughter she was trapped there. It's difficult to conceive of a more thoroughgoing example of the betrayal of a child - of, indeed, child abuse.


Investigations of a Dog looks at the developing historiography of the English Civil War (part 2 is here).

Elizabeth Chadwick: Living the History visits Wymondham (pronounced "Windham") Abbey in Norfolk and finds that English Heritage has got Roger Bigod all wrong.

Matters of fact seem harder to establish in Sri Lanka, where the story that Lord Ram used monkeys to help him build a bridge from the Indian mainland is suddenly a topic for controversy. Pickled Poltics reports.

Finally, Diamond Geezer on a bit of London history: the closure of the New Piccadilly Cafe.


The first one in this section is really on economics. Virtual Economics is your guide to the wisdom of, er, Terry Pratchett.

Pickled Politics (again) asks whether referendums are good or bad. Most impressively, the writer (Rumbold) uses the correct plural.

Shane Greer (who recently took over the Diary whilst Iain Dale was on holiday) thinks that Miranda Grell, the Labour candidate who smeered her Lib Dem opponent as a paedophile, is "stupid". That is a rather charitable view.

Gray Monk is not impressed by the political class which leads us these days. Burning Our Money is no more impressed by the rates for clearing up crime that the police claim. A nice bit of Sherlock Holmes parody there.

And to complete our trio of unimpressed people, read Mr Eugenides on the new Scottish cabinet.

At least someone is pleased: Earthquake Cove celebrates the Lib Dem and Green condemnation of the academic boycott of Israel.

There is a better than average meme circulating at the moment: as you would expect, Miserable Old Fart has a longer memory than most of us.

Finally, the f word marvels at Croydon Conservatives' website:

Interestingly today’s “main story” ... isn’t the arrest of their MP (and London Assembly member) but that the council tax rise is the lowest in five years.


That's all for this week. Next week's Roundup will be hosted at Philobiblon. Please e-mail your nominations to britblog [at] gmail [dot] com.

And please support Bloggerheads and Craig Murray.


dreamingspire said...

Don't forget Lynne's contribution to blog of the year as judge. Short blog at
linking to speech at

Anonymous said...

And quite amazingly, the mainstream media are still refusing to engage with the story about Usmanov. They are determined not to let bloggers steal the limelight, which is pathetic.

Anonymous said...

liberal blog? what is that?