Westminster Sex Scandals and Bullying

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  • I was hoping to keep all of this sort of stories within the Sex Predators thread, but I think this story deserves its own one.

    politicsforum

    A quick catch up on events first:

    uk politics forum politics forum uk

    In the last few days there has been a frenzy in Westminster about a dodgy dossier, a list, all manner of claims about ministers' and MPs' bad behaviour.

    (For what it's worth, the list which we have seen contains both a mixture of unsavoury allegations, reports of well-known relationships, and some claims that are furiously denied. There is just no way of knowing frankly, how much of it is true).

    Theresa May has reacted to claims of harassment of staff by MPs by calling for new grievance procedures.

    In a letter to Commons Speaker John Bercow, the PM said the current House of Commons disciplinary regime lacked "teeth" and needed to be reformed.

    DEFENCE Secretary Michael Fallon last night ­admitted inappropriately touching a female journalist — while six Cabinet ministers were named in a ­dossier of alleged Tory sex pests.

    Mr Fallon confessed that he was the minister who talkRADIO presenter Julia Hartley-Brewer threatened to punch for repeatedly putting his hand on her knee.

    A Labour activist has said she was raped at a party event and that a senior Labour official discouraged her from reporting the attack.

    Bex Bailey said she was told reporting the 2011 incident could "damage" her and that she was given no advice on what she should do next.

    PARLIAMENT was in a panic last night after it was revealed a dossier of alleged Tory sex pests names six Cabinet ministers and other senior allies of the Prime Minister.

    The bombshell document, drawn up by anonymous female and male staff who work for and with Conservative MPs, details claims about 36 Tories in total — 21 of them serving or former ministers.

    Prime Minister Theresa May's deputy, Damian Green, has said allegations of inappropriate behaviour towards a female activist are "completely false".

    Mr Green has instructed libel lawyers over the claims, the BBC understands.

    OK, I think that's the main stories and sequence of events.


    It all stems from the Harvey Weinstein scandal and last week's story that staff who worked in Westminster, were preparing a list of MPs who are known for inappropriate behaviour. Then Julia Hartley-Brewer spoke of an incident but she did not name the person, turns out it was the defence secretary. Then a claim by a Labour activists that she was raped and her complaint was ignored by the Labour party and today we fast forward to the claim that Damien Green, the Deputy PM in all but name, has been involved inappropriate behaviour.


    If there are loads of MPs who have been involved in unwanted sexual behaviour against others, should they be sacked? How do you sack a MP?

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  • How do you sack a MP?

    Deselection by the local party. But if they don't, I think that a criminal record disqualifies an MP?


    IMHO there's a lot of skeletons in cupboards to be revealed yet at Westminster and in the media industry.

    History is much like an Endless Waltz. The three beats of war, peace and revolution continue on forever.

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  • Indeed, lots of bones will be falling out of cupboards, but for this person, it's game over:


    Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon has resigned, saying his behaviour may have "fallen short" of the standards expected by the UK military.

    He told the BBC that what had been "acceptable 15, 10 years ago is clearly not acceptable now".


    He is the first politician to quit following recently revealed claims of serious sexual abuse in Parliament.

    No doubt he was sacked, but it's presented as a resignation. What is interesting is the question that Laura Kuenssberg asked Fallon in a interview, available in that article.


    She basically asked him if he was resigning before more allegations came out against him. Clearly, she knows something which isn't in the public domain yet. He odd response to all the allegations, was that many of them were false, but he went on to say that what was acceptable 15 or 10 years ago, is not acceptable now. Who's he kidding?


    If you touch someone in a sexual way and it's not wanted or expected, that was never acceptable. It's sexual assault plain and simple.


    Lets see who's next to go.

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  • Actually, a lot has changed. A while ago harassment by people who were rich or powerful (including teachers and scout masters, family members, family friends, priests, aristocrats, etc) was ignored on account of the social hierarchy of significance given to them. Molesting relatives, sexual predators and other scum were untouchable in this regard. I speak from experience of those times. Many a crime went unpunished because the perpetrator was socially significant, a friend of the family, a dangerous undiagnosed psycho, whatever. It was how people dealt with ferocious dogs, we just went round them, tried to avoid them and if we got attacked by them, we were bandaged up and told to just get on with our lives. Of course many fell into holes later on from the trauma but no one was willing to speak out against these social icons or people who had the power to fire, hire, label and libel as they saw fit and were basically looked up to by communities steeped in this brainwashed behaviour.


    Because much has changed and the victim now has more power to speak out, these crimes can be brought into the light, examined and taken to court if necessary.


    I don't think patting people on the knee qualifies as a sex crime. Rape does. If the labour lady was raped, this is a tragedy for her and it will be very hard to prove as now there is only her word for it and no DNA evidence and the law has to be mindful of those who take revenge on their opponents by making things up about them, or overegging the pudding of accusation.


    The genuine victims need to be sorted out from the bandwagon jumpers and would be a good thing if the Hollywood/celeb thing lost its glamour glitter and the ordinary people were put back into focus. It isn't about "me too" and getting a bit of stardust from the association, it's about real life incidents. And there were thousands. My generation witnessed them and suffered them. The generations before us did the same. What is happening today is a totally new thing for the victims of sex crimes and violent attacks by powerful individuals and groups. The victims finally have a voice that is being heard.


    I don't think hysterical dumping of the accused is a good idea and I think the severity of the incident should be taken into account as well as the very real explanation that things were different in earlier times. They were very different and unless the present generation comprehends this, every second man is going to be labelled a sexual offender.


    That is not the way to go.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • Now Fallon has resigned I am beginning to think that May won't be able to hold on for much longer. She had enough problems before this over Brexit and she was slaughtered again in PMQs by Corbyn, this time over tax evasion.

  • Gavin Williamson is announced as UK defence secretary, replacing Sir Michael Fallon who resigned on Wednesday

    New defence secretary has just been announced. Has anyone heard of him? I can't say I know him.


    In light of the emerging sex scandal at Westminster, will there be other changes at the top of government? It's not as if we have anything else important going on at the moment..... :rolleyes:(Brexit)

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  • Now Fallon has resigned I am beginning to think that May won't be able to hold on for much longer. She had enough problems before this over Brexit and she was slaughtered again in PMQs by Corbyn, this time over tax evasion.

    It could be the opposite, it could be the making of her, except for one thing, this:


    Labour's Lisa Nandy said she had warned the then Home Secretary Theresa May three years ago about whips using evidence of sexual harassment "to demand loyalty" from MPs.

    If May has ignored evidence of sexual harassment and worse, it's been used to garner loyalty from MPs, this could destroy May.

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  • Another good post from you LW, you're on a real roll at the moment. I wish that first part of your post was in the other thread about sexual predators, I might even copy it. Ok, to pick up on one of your points here, specific to the Westminster sex scandal, I will try to address your others points at another time in the other thread:


    Patting knees - it's all about context.


    If two people are flirting with one another in a pub or a nightclub, then one pat of the knee is acceptable as long as the recipient doesn't mind. If they do mind, it should stop immediately. Out of a social atmosphere, there should be no reason for a man to touch a woman's knee. Period. Fallon repeatedly touched Hartley-Brewer's knee after she told him to stop. That's assault.

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  • In our time, yes, but a while ago, it was just the gung-ho way some (many) guys used to carry on. I think there should be a line drawn between this sort of pest and a real sexual predator. Otherwise the courts will be snarled up with trivial incidents while Rome burns.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • Obviously, if someone is raping a child (just wait for "current" incidents to come out of Westminster on this issue....) the magnitude of seriousness eclipses that of touching a women's knee, but it all goes back to the same thing. Self control.


    Men should learn self control. It is as simple as that. There's the internet and lockable bathrooms, when its difficult to inhibit those urges. The line is absolute here. Do not touch someone else in a sexual way, unless they are agreeable to such contact and the location is appropriate ie a pub and not a workplace and they are a consenting adult. It is very simple.


    Just because many men behaved like this, did not make it acceptable then, or now. It's time to stop. The alternative, is women should be dressed from head to foot so that men can never get excited by the titillation of a bit of skin. (Can't think where I'm getting this idea from...;)) Screw women's rights, it's the woman's fault if they get unwanted attention by showing a bit of ankle, the sluts.:rolleyes: Is that how it should be?


    It can't be both. Men have to learn self control. The focus should be solely on men, otherwise we get into the women and short skirts debate.

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  • Yes, agree about having codes of behaviour. These have been eroded and at times negative ones have been instituted or tolerated and this causes most of the problem when it isn't the result of criminal intent or psychotic motivation.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • There was a discussion on BBC's Newsnight programme last night on this subject and someone mentioned the subject of parenting.


    Now I think about it, if you exclude the psychotics and deviants, a lot of this behaviour is down to bad parenting.


    Obviously, an adult is responsible for their own behaviour, but if they have been brought up in such a way which does not respect others, is it any wonder this kind of thing happens?

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  • True.


    The big problem for all who have endured a sexual attack or severe abuse, or even grooming, is the tendency of people to accuse the victim of lying, to dismiss what they say, to defend the perpetrator, to be affected by the lies of the perpetrator's supporters and to revictimise the individuals for something that wasn't, and isn't, their fault. Especially in the case of child sexual abuse and rape. This is the worst case scenario and there are many glassy eyed survivors, who have simply had to make of their lives whatever they can. A lot of these become dependent on alcohol and drugs because they take the sort of "medication" that dulls the memories and controls the stress and many suffer depression, some committing suicide in the end.


    The perpetrators sail on, disinterested in the result of their crimes and, if questioned, they lie and blame the victim.


    This is the big divide between the bum pinching office sex pest and the devious sexual criminal. The latter is also a murderer of the victim's psychological wellbeing, for life if the event is severe enough to warrant defence mechanisms that operate automatically to keep the victim from a repeat of the crime, or a return of the perpetrator to finish them off. The reason why few of this kind of victim are ever heard of is that they are seldom seen and live underground lives burdened by the unresolved, and often unresolvable, terror of the past.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • From all the news reports today Leadsom put in a formal complaint about Fallon ( A May supporter.) last week over an incident a few years ago. Fallon decided to go and May put Williamson, an ardent supporter of hers and ex chief whip who no doubt knows a lot of MPs dirty little secrets, into his place.


    This is beginning to look very House of Cards like. Leadsom getting rid of Fallon, thus eliminating a possible future leadership contender who could stand against her, and creating a problem which could affect May's leadership at the same time. May out maneuvering her and putting an even more ardent supporter and high flyer who's only been an MP since 2010, into his place.


    Now all May has to do is ensure Williamson is right behind her. Preferably without a dagger in his hand.

  • Politics is so much more about the struggles of personalities within elites than it is about the people and the future of nations. :cursing:

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • Former Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon "categorically denies" allegations that he made inappropriate sexual comments to Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom.

    Reports in the Sun and the Daily Mail say Mrs Leadsom complained to Number 10 about her cabinet colleague, accusing him of making "lewd" remarks.

    Here's the story that Morgan was talking about earlier and a second one has emerged about a Labour MP, who has been suspended:


    Labour has suspended an MP after it was alleged he sexually harassed a party activist three years ago.

    Luton North MP Kelvin Hopkins, 76, has not commented on the claims, which were published in the Telegraph shortly after his suspension was announced.

    The floodgates are opening with all these type of stories.

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  • From all the news reports today Leadsom put in a formal complaint about Fallon ( A May supporter.) last week over an incident a few years ago. Fallon decided to go and May put Williamson, an ardent supporter of hers and ex chief whip who no doubt knows a lot of MPs dirty little secrets, into his place.


    This is beginning to look very House of Cards like. Leadsom getting rid of Fallon, thus eliminating a possible future leadership contender who could stand against her, and creating a problem which could affect May's leadership at the same time. May out maneuvering her and putting an even more ardent supporter and high flyer who's only been an MP since 2010, into his place.


    Now all May has to do is ensure Williamson is right behind her. Preferably without a dagger in his hand.

    No, I don't think its about political maneuvering, but people putting their hands where they shouldn't. Supposedly, Fallon has a history of such behaviour.


    One of the people on Question Time last night said that May called Fallon in and asked him for an assurance after KneeGate that there weren't any more incidents. He was unable to give May that assurance and in effect was sacked there and then.

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  • The reason why few of this kind of victim are ever heard of is that they are seldom seen and live underground lives burdened by the unresolved, and often unresolvable, terror of the past.

    As always with your many excellent posts, you hit things in exactly the right spot and this sentence sums me up in a nutshell, with the exception I have never suffered from any unwanted sexual attention, but severe, sustained bullying over a very long time. In many ways, my entire life.


    Once the damage is done, its done. It can't be reversed and the way the world is seen afterwards is very different to how it was seen beforehand. And the underground remark is quite pertinent, because a bit like a mole, if I go out at all, it tends to be at night.

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  • I won't tell you how or why I empathise with you, but I do. And I understand your pain and suffering and for the sake of all who have known this and every single traumatised soldier, citizen and indeed animal, in the world, I would extend the hand that helps them out of a hole. But I'm in one myself.


    What I can say is that none of you are alone. It feels like it and society is, as D.H. Lawrence so neatly put it, "a partly insane beast", but there is the group who know what this ruined life is like. They are strong in their knowledge of things others never have to experience and have survived much. They are all standing not behind you but with you.


    Here's to us

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • As I said, I've never had the sexual attention of a predator (being fat does have some benefits!:) but I do understand and empathise with those women (and men, and especially kids) who find themselves in a situation where someone else uses their position, their power over them and they stay silent and hibernate.


    Here's for shining the light all these predators and showing them up for what they are, which is weak little men ( and women). I have experiences of powerful women too and they are no better than me. They enjoy making others lives miserable the same as the men.

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  • My scum neighbours and especially the one who is now deceased (:D) carried on this misery. After 10 months and repeated mentions, I still haven't created my neighbours from hell thread yet. That's how bad it was. When you are trapped whether it be a office or worse, your own home, it magnifies the abuse, the bullying.

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  • Ok, enough of me and back to Westminster and the scandals are coming thick and fast, first of from earlier today:


    No 10 has insisted Andrea Leadsom did not call for Sir Michael Fallon to be sacked from the cabinet amid reports she complained about his conduct.


    The Sun and Daily Mail said the Commons leader complained about the ex-defence secretary making "lewd" remarks to her.

    Suspended Labour MP Kelvin Hopkins has said he "absolutely and categorically" denies claims of sexual harassment.

    Labour activist Ava Etemadzadeh, 27, earlier told the BBC that Mr Hopkins had hugged her inappropriately after a student event in 2014.

    And tonight, a new scandal:


    MP Charlie Elphicke has been suspended by the Conservatives after "serious allegations" that have been referred to the police, the party has said.

    Mr Elphicke, a former party whip who has been the MP for Dover since 2010, has denied any wrongdoing.

    This is not going to go away any time soon.


    On Tracey Ulman's comedy show tonight, there was a sketch which said to phone in your sexual harassment allegation before the media gets bored and move on to a new story.


    The media will move onto new stories when all the sewage has been cleared from Westminster.


    Which MP is next? Place your bets.

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  • It does seem fashionable to out sex pests at the moment, what with Hollywood and now Westminster, we had Saville and various other British celebs a few years back, wonder where it will end.

    Young boys in the park jumpers for goalpost that's what footballs all about isn't it.

  • It's become a farce. None of it should be made public until allegations can bring forth proof, or a rational case for arrest, especially if allegations are about mere lewd behaviour in the distant past. No proof, then no firing and suspending people and dragging them through the muck. Dung sticks and livelihoods will be ruined, future employment will be denied on the basis of often opportunistic and occasionally hysterical bandwagon jumping. Serious cases are another matter. They are being eclipsed by the "me too" effect.


    You aren't letting the side down if you're a woman and you think this is getting out of hand. You don't have to fire people and libel them if you're an employer and the accused has not been proven guilty of some serious illegal activity that has any hope of providing evidence for prosecution.


    The media and especially the internet social network curse is going viral again and the mob will rise. That is how lynchings happen and I'm personally repelled at the way this whole flood of accusations has been handled. The genuine cases are being swallowed up in the wave.


    I also agree with your comment, H, that powerful women can be as nasty and abusive as powerful men. It's a human trait in those who seek control over their fellow travellers.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • No, I don't think its about political maneuvering, but people putting their hands where they shouldn't. Supposedly, Fallon has a history of such behaviour.

    I think in the case of politicians it's all about political maneuvering. I really can't believe that Leadsome is such a flower she was so traumatised so long after the event and she certainly didn't complain for the good of the party.


    Apparently Fallon wanted her removed because she was obstructive and she made a pre-emptive strike. Now it seems she's a victim of sexual harassment and obviously can't be sacked. Result - she's still in the running for any future leadership contest or at least a high ranking post.


    May's 'friend and colleague ' Andrea, who remember even tried to capitalise on the fact May didn't have children during the last leadership campaign, is going to need some watching I think.

  • Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive.

    The vagabond who's rapping at your door

    Is standing in the clothes that you once wore

  • The dramatic circumstances of Sir Michael Fallon’s sudden resignation as defence secretary last week can be revealed by the Observer.


    The cabinet heavyweight’s shock departure on Wednesday followed a phone call from the journalist, Jane Merrick, who informed Downing Street that he had lunged at her and attempted to kiss her on the lips in 2003 after they had lunched together.


    The revelation was the tipping point for No 10, which the Observer understands had been compiling a list of alleged incidents involving Fallon since claims against him were first made.

    That's why he went.


    He might not be a rapist, but he cannot control himself.


    Up to this point, I was all but ready to write of May, but its clear she sacked him and that was the correct decision by her.


    What about the others in her cabinet, what's she going to do about them, especially you know who....?

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  • DM is ok, although its online version is a celebrity fest shit hole and as for Peter Hitches. what is he now? Once a communist now a neo-con, he seems to swing from one extreme to another and doesn't reflect the views of the average Briton.


    As its been two minutes since the last scandal, time for the next one:


    Theresa May's most senior minister has denied a claim that police found pornography on his computer during a raid on his Westminster office in 2008.


    First Secretary of State Damian Green said ex-police chief Bob Quick's claims in the Sunday Times were "completely untrue" and "political smears".

    And he said police had never told him that any improper material had been found on his parliamentary computer.

    Green is finished.


    I had forgotten that story that he was arrested. This was when Jacqui Smith (my husband loves watching porn rather than watching me) as Home Secretary, ordered MPs offices to be searched.


    So, who would replace Green? Shagger, I mean shaggy, Boris....:S:rolleyes:

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