In Tatchell’s own chapter 9, entitled ‘Questioning Ages of Minority and Ages of Consent’ he asks ‘What purpose does it [the age of majority] serve other than reinforcing a set of increasingly quaint, minority moral values left over from the Victorian era?’

The chapter just after Tatchell’s is entitled ‘Ends and Means: How to Make Paedophilia Acceptable….?’ and opens with an account of sexual activity with two 8 year old boys before describing it as ‘all very normal to a libertarian, even to some open-minded parents’.

Peter Tatchell wrote a chapter in a book published by the Paedophile Information Exchange and this post link was retweeted by Louise Mensch on Twitter today.


Reactions to the involvement of Harman, Dromey and Hewitt in the NCCL when PIE was an affiliated organisation have varied. It was all a long time ago. The past is a foreign country. The 1970s were different. And, for Labour diehards, they didn’t agree with PIE, the affiliation preceded their joining, and so on.

These reactions are based on the idea that it’s jarring, contradictory, unlike them that they might have been in an organisation with links to PIE. I suggest it isn’t.

This is what happens when deeply illiberal people get involved in Liberal causes: they don’t have any instinctive or intellectual basis for judgement. Harman, Dromey and Hewitt are deeply illiberal people. In the 1970s they had the same driving motivation they do today and did when in government. They believe that minorities are oppressed, that most people are wicked and need to be herded by their superiors and that they, personally, are those superiors.

There were civil rights issues in the early 1970s, for women, gays, minority races, on a scale that no longer exists. It was the obvious open goal for the Bossy Tendency. But they weren’t coming at these issues from a liberal perspective, so they didn’t get where the line should be drawn, where the right of adults to sleep with whoever the hell they want in the way they want differed from 50 year old men buggering boys – for this was an extraordinarily misguided association by the NCCL of homosexuality with paedophilia, when it comes down to it.

As for Tatchell, he is similar but not identical. He has consistently championed the right of kids to be sexual. Or maybe that should be the fact that they are. Hormones don’t coincide with legislation about the age of consent in many individuals. But the notion of the age of consent is a good one, the power imbalance between a 50 year old man and a 14 year old girl is too great. And he can be terrifyingly illiberal, as when he wants the fruits of everybody’s labour to be controlled by the sort of obsessive nut who is attracted to full-time politics, something he calls ‘economic democracy’.

So they got the bossiness wrong. But, then, they always do.


UPDATE: Peter Tatchell tweeted me to say:


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Israel was hit by 50 missiles today, fired from Gaza just days after a ship carrying a consignment of missiles from Iran, in effect, was captured.

I write this at 21:00 on Wednesday 12th March.

The Telegraph has Cameron in Israel while 50 missiles hit as top story on its front page right now.

The Guardian mentions Cameron’s visit but no missiles, not on the front page, not on the World News Page, nor in the Middle East section nor in the Israel section.

The Independent doesn’t mention the missiles on its front page but does trail a story about a suicide bomber’s brother saying the bomber should receive a VC. Its Middle East page doesn’t mention it, but does mention Israeli soldiers shooting someone at a border crossing.

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Tim asks:

As a matter of mild interest, when does reality ever get a look in with these people?

It doesn’t.

Although it has attracted a small number of very bright people, Marxism is, in general, cleverness for stupid people. You get to use words like ‘hegemony’ and analyse the world, albeit in unusually fatuous terms.

This is why a Marxian-influenced writer like Richard Seymour can conclude, in the piece Tim was discussing, that Communist China’s military build up is because ‘In a very general sense, militarisation could be seen as an integral aspect of capitalism.’

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The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has photographed the never-before-seen breakup of an asteroid, which has fragmented into as many as 10 smaller pieces. Although fragile comet nuclei have been seen to fall apart as they approach the Sun, nothing like the breakup of this asteroid, P/2013 R3, has ever been observed before in the asteroid belt.

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Britain’s ruling class has decayed not just to the point where Mr. Cameron is considered a man of exceptional talent, but to where its first priority is protecting its percentage on Russian money — even as Russian armored personnel carriers rumble around the streets of Sevastopol. But the establishment understands that in the 21st century what matters are banks, not tanks.

The Russians also understand this. They know that London is a center of Russian corruption, that their loot plunges into Britain’s empire of tax havens — from Gibraltar to Jersey, from the Cayman Islands to the British Virgin Islands — on which the sun never sets.

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A real one: 3D printing. Tissue with blood vessels is on the horizon.


A new bioprinting method is reported for fabricating 3D tissue constructs replete with vasculature, multiple types of cells, and extracellular matrix. These intricate, heterogeneous structures are created by precisely co-printing multiple materials, known as bioinks, in three dimensions. These 3D micro-engineered environments open new ­avenues for drug screening and fundamental studies of wound healing, angiogenesis, and stem-cell niches.

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I nearly forgot.

I want the UK out of the European Union. It’s a kleptocratic, anti-democratic distillation of everything that’s worst about its individual member states. I’d cheerfully see Europe as a free trade zone with free movement of people and capital, but not at the cost of democracy, and not as a vast bureaucracy specialising in technocratic overreach and corruption.

But I’m not prepared to support, vote for, or defend against groups like Hope not Hate a party whose leader defends casual public racism. Fuck UKIP.

That is all.


UPDATE: Chris Dillow is right, this is part of a pattern of ‘asymmetric libertarianism‘: “people want freedom for themselves whilst seeking to deny it to others”.

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