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The editorial is correct to talk of an industry. It's an industry that searches for rascism so to justify continued grants and its search only undermines good race relations.

The Westminster village also throws away logic when accusations of homophobia are thrown about.

Boris has just told London's race industry that he'll be bullied by them.

Black mark Boris although that's probably a racist phrase!

Boris hasn't learnt from Cameron's overreaction to Patrick Mercer.

Why is this just coming out now?
Noone would have given a damn about such a vacuous article written like a student newspaper piece on some obscure website. I could barely bring myself to finish reading it it was so waffly and full of references to how great the writer was.
I've lost respect for Boris over this.

Don't understand why he's resigned unless of course he was ashamed of his remarks. If he wasn't he should have told the race relations industry to go to hell.
The accusations made to Boris Johnson were always bound to fail as they bore so little resemblance to reality and bore the mark of some desperate people using desperate tactics. McGrath's resignation will give these people a bit of credibility they may not deserve.

'National debate shouldn't continue to be held hostage by the racism industry.'
Apt choice of words.. presumably Boris would pay ransom to terrorists so that they'd go away (only to find they;d continue to take more hostages as a result). He's clearly not cut from the same cloth as Mrs T!

That statement from Boris Johnson makes my blood boil.
Boris is basically saying that JM is innocent but I'll throw him to the wolves.

So let me get this straight..... Boris rejects the context of the quote, rejects the implication of the 'article', yet openly relents to non-existent pressure over something that he admits was wrong in case it might damage his career? Good guy to have on your side in a crisis...

It's truly time we started to dismantle the whole '-ism' industry and put an end once and for all to the culture of special-pleading which attaches itself to supposed persecution on the grounds of race or gender.

Alternatively, can I claim 'special' treatment because I'm a brown-eyed ethnic-white non-traditionally-sexed self-employed male who's not in receipt of any sort of state-benefit or tax-credit? Surely these days that puts me in a serious minority?

In circumstances such as these it would be worth taking a straw poll of the opinions of real BME people rather than those whose "jobs" require them to find offence where none was intended.

Or indeed present.

"Productivity" is all for the latter group.

A very bad day for Boris Johnson and a confirmation that those who know him well say he puts Boris first second and third.

This is a truly dreadful decision. I'm a defender of the Party leadership but Nick Boles and the Cameroons are guilty of a serious error of judgement bordering on panic.

Was James McGrath being racist? No. Then get out there and defend him against a squalid, politically motivated accusation instead of effectively confirming it as true by sacking him. The Conservative Party is strong enough to make a reasoned and rational stand against 'anti-racist' hysteria instead of feeding it.

Where is the loyalty? Where is the judgement? Where is the balls?

This isn't politics - it's witchcraft.

Shameful BBC reporting:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/7468434.stm

"The adviser, James McGrath, told Marc Wadsworth that "black people who didn't like it here could go back". "

If they are going to paraphrase it in such crude terms they certainly shouldn't put it in quotation marks.

I draw readers' attention in an update to the post to a very strong blog from Iain Dale. I agree with every word written by Iain.

Tanuki, I agree, it is an industry that lives by spreading fear and creating the idea of racism where none actually exists. The industry fails to act when stand-up comedians are cracking racial jokes about the tragic deaths of Chinese cockle pickers at Morecambe Bay or when people make jokes about the Irish yet they overreact when a comment on race is made rather than a racial comment. Madness.

'He retorted: “Well, let them go if they don’t like it here.”'

Sorry, but what is wrong with that? If immigrants don't like it here, why do they come? Surely immigrants come because they like Britain, not because they don't like it. It is therefore logical for them to leave/not come if they don't like it here.

I have to say that I too back Iain and Tims stance. James is a truly exceptional person who I have dealt with on quite a few occasions.

He will be sadly missed by the party, and it is extremely shortsighted to take the stance that James had to go.

His loss to the party will certainly be another organisations gain.

Have these People gone Mad? There is absolutely nothing wrong with what James has said.

I am of Asian origin, was not educated in English ( you probably know that from what I write), Proud to be British and have lived in London for 21 years.

Some People may be ignorant of other cultures and that does not mean it is racism.

If People don't like to live in London they can always go and live somewhere else. If that means going back to where they came from it is their choice.

"If you live in Rome love like a Roman" or something like that they say.

We are not forcing any one to live in London or Britain. If People don't like it they can always go back or go to another place where they feel comfortable.It is their choice.


London is Great City and please go somewhere else if you don't like it
Well done James.

"Is there a gutsy politician willing to face up to the hysteria that this industry generates?"

As far as the leadership of the Conservative Party goes, the answer is clearly "no". I find it profoundly depressing.

I second Anthony Scholefield at 21:52

A bad day for Boris

RE: Ted B @ 22:03

Shocked by the BBC. Is there any way one could ask them make a retraction?

The BBC website seems to have got it right now: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7468434.stm

They left out the bit about Marc Wadsworth being a Labour Party activist..

McGrath should have not have spoken to or met Wadsworth, especially without a background check. At the very least, the meeting should have been organised and monitored by Guto Garri, the Director of Communications at City Hall. This PR disaster is as much Harri's responsibility as McGrath's.

This story only demonstrates a lack of professionalism and discipline within the Mayoral team. Boris should have sacked McGrath, not because of the remark itself, but for his spectacular lack of judgement.

Get a grip, Boris!

The BBC may think it has hidden the evidence under the carpet, but should James McGrath wish to take it up with the BBC Trust there is a screenshot of the original BBC story on my blog...

http://tonysharp.blogspot.com/2008/06/bbc-journalistic-non-standards.html

The BBC is nothing short of a disgrace in the way it jumped on a politically slanted bandwagon.

Manifestly, Boris Johnson's position on this is absurd. Wadsworth says: Some people might leave Britain if you become elected. McGrath replies: Well, let them go if they wants to. What is supposed to be the interpretation of this exchange that is racist, or that might reasonably be interpreted as racist by someone? Here is the interpretation: Wadsworth, thinking of people of Caribbean extraction as one thing ("them") assumes that McGrath is responding to his question by suggesting that Caribbeans should leave the country. But all this means is that Wadsworth is a racist or in some other way views things in collectivist terms. McGrath, in contrast, answers his question directly and properly - for McGrath "them" is the set of people to whom Wadswroth refers - a subset of older Caribbeans who might be inclined to leave because Johnson is mayor.

So precisely *because* McGrath is *not* a racist, the "racist" interpretation of his statement never occurred to him. In contract, because Wadsworth *is* a racist or a collectivist (or just a plain mischief-maker), Wadsworth is able to "hear" a racist spin.

The correct answer: denounce Wadsworth as a racist - for only a racist could understand McGrath's statement as racist. Johnson's solution: fire the person that isn't a racist and hasn't done anything remotely racist, on the grounds that racists/mischief-makers like Wadsworth might pretend they were offended.

Ridiculous - quite literally, in the sense that the only thing one can do here is to ridicule Johnson for this appalling decision.

Continuing on the BBC point, are they not racist for assuming everyone from the Caribbean is black?

Well said Andrew Lilico.

Boris's cowardly, contradictory statement needs a good fisking by someone.

I bet Nick Boles is behind this.

Another small victory for the race relations industry I'm afraid. I agree that these 'shrill' race advisors and commentators need standing up to but they have too many friends and sympathisers at the BBC who will take whatever opportunity to paraphrase or misrepresent what a conservative has said on race and by the time a retraction or clarification is made by the BBC the damage is done and the old 'no smoke without fire', 'same old Tories' cliches are in the public mind. The Lefty media will use whatever it can to distract from Brown's problems. They'd rather see the points he's losing Labour go to the Lib Dems than the Conservatives. As with other issues pertaining to BBC bias and the race relations industry in general they have to wait to be attacked once the Conservatives are in power at Westminster and in a position to punish the liars and crooks in these organisations. When Cameron is in No 10 Boris can have his revenge on Doreen Lawrence and Livingstone for their cynical misrepresentation of his piece in the Telegraph and start cutting off funding and attacking the credibility of certain parts of the RR industry. Until then unfortunate officials such as James McGrath will have to 'take one for the team'.

Marc Wadsworth is the racist. I totally agree with the person who said his article read like something from a student rag. And has anyone seen this guy's attitude to Australia? THis is one quote:

"Him, a guy from a country where Black people are the ‘Aboriginal’ indigenous nation who are stereotyped by the white colonisers as social security scrounging drunks"

That is surely Far worse than any interpretation on what McGrath supposedly said! I trust that proper journalists will actually read his report and have the good sense to discount the whole thing.

I campaigned for Boris. But I'm afraid I find it hard to see him as anything more than a selfish careerist. He's on the right side, but I don't like him.

James McGrath is an idiot for falling into this trap. If he could not be more careful given his posiition then he deserves to lose his job on grounds of stupidity alone.

Urgh. Bad, bad Boris. This is like a reverse Ken thing - where Ken hired people on racial expediency, Boris fires them.

I agree with the editorial and others' comments. Boris has paid his first tranche of Danegeld.

I didn' like what seemed like a campaign on here and in some of the trade press at times to get McGrath a job in the Boris campaign. It certainly exaggerated his background which in truth was that of a very hard working and very loyal bag carrier. He was somehow redefined as a senior adviser.

It always seems that this normally excellent blog is far better when it plays the ball and not the man! (I remember a similar campaign about another staff member whio had fallen on hard times and then claimed a rather exaggerated position of building a conservative coalition when in relaity they had been appointed head of external comms which had previously been occupied by fiona melville.)

That said i take no pleasure in this. James is a decent man and deserved a chance after taking a place in the campaign team.

I hope he dusts himself down and comes back. but please no self promo campaign this time james!

COMMENT OVERRIDDEN - PERSONAL ATTACK

Charles Walker is correct. James McGrath is an adviser and not an elected representative and should not have been speaking to the media, especially such a dubious online publication. He walked into an obvious trap and screwed up.

In future only the Mayor, Deputy Mayors and GLA members should give media interviews. Advisers should stick to advising rather than ego-tripping in the media. Guto Harri should get it sorted now!

Tim - interesting slew of anti-McGrath comments from 'several' posters.

Same or anonymised IP address, by any chance?

@political dna, I have met Boris, McGrath and Harri on several occasions. I know what happens in a political structure and have hands-on experience on dealing with the media (including acting as a spokeman) for political and corporate organisations.

Being a political journalist or lobbyist is very different to running a communications department. To be a journalist or lobbyist, you need contacts. To run a communications department, you need managerial experience, judgement and the ability to exercise authority.

This sad incident was a cock-up that should have never have happened.

Common Sense, as usual, questions the identity and motives of the posters who dare to criticise a Tory politician or official. He or she must be work for CCHQ or, at best, is just ignorant about how to deal with the media.

"love the way most of the comments come from people that i) never met McGrath ii) never met Boris iii) never met Guto Harri iv) have no idea what happens in a political structure."

Guilty to 1, 2 and 3. Thus my arguments aren't biased by perceptions of any of those 3 people.

'Libertarian' - a misnomer if ever there was one - accuses me of being a CCHQ operative.

Had he (and it is a 'he') bothered to read my posts he'd realise I am criticising the Party leadership for backing (or even promoting) the woeful and counterproductive decision to sack McGrath.

'Boris Johnson, a right-wing Conservative, might just trigger off a mass exodus of older Caribbean migrants back to our homelands'.

What would have been the correct response?

Where race is concerned, James McGrath is the last person who should worry anyone about his newly former boss, Boris Johnson, the de facto joint Tory-BNP candidate who only won on the BNP's second preference votes.

For McGrath was simply stating a fact. If Darcus Howe is right (and I don't believe that he is) that elderly West Indians will simply return to the Caribbean rather than live in Johnson's London, then they should do just that. There is more to Britain than London, and those who would rather live in a different country should go there.

The same is true of those who wish to live under Sharia Law. The same used to be true of those who idolised the Soviet Union, or apartheid South Africa.

And the same is true of the Boris-backers (including many of the old Moscow-worshippers and all of the old Pretoria-worshippers) who now prostrate themselves to what they imagine America or Israel to be like, by definition including all three people who ever supported the Iraq War.

They should clear off to America or Israel, not only because the shock of what those countries were really like would probably kill them, but also because those of us who want to be British could then get on with being British.

Perhaps Common Sense can tell me why Libertarian is a misnomer. I was simply stating an opinion based upon my many years experience as a media spokesman.

The issue is not McGrath's comment, it is the fact that he was able to make it to a trouble-making hack.It is impossible to run a professional and gaffe free office unless there are proper procedures for dealing with the media.

Wadsworth should have been required to submit his request for an interview to Harri. McGrath should never have agreed to meet or speak to Wadsworth without written permission, e.g. via email or text, from Harri. McGrath, in the absence of such permission, should have declined the interview.

We need to know if such procedures exist in City Hall and if not why not. In the end, the buck stops with Harri and Boris.

I worked with James McGrath on the Boris campaign team. He's actually really nice, and as someone of mixed race, I'm fairly sure he isn't a racist! Unfortunately, McGrath is just another victim of our ridiculous, over-reactionary 'PC' culture.

This decision is the opposite of everything for which we all worked to get Boris elected. An end to the Politics of Identity, remember? We're supposed to be dismantling their whole ghastly apparatus, not pandering to its machinery. It's racist to dismiss Darcus Howe as "shrill"?

Yasmin Alibai Brown can write an article calling Tory BME "uncle Toms", or white Tories as "not from our London", and no-one at the BBC notices. But you give the obvious answer to a "when did you stop beating your wife" question, and you have the full panoply of the Anti-Racist machinery set on you.

A depressing, wrong decision.

Wadwsworth may not be a racist but his response to the citizen-hack appears ill judged and unprofessional. Rule 1, think before opening gob.

Anyone attached to the Johnson Mayoral Project should be acutely aware of such sensitivities.

Frankly, its Darcus Howe who is being prejudiced here: If Johnson were black, Howe white and the people leaving were engaged in white-flight then Howe's remarks would appear quite Powellite.

But we are where we are. We won London by building a broad coalition based on respect.

So if we are to give people like Ray Lewis a chance to achieve something then ill judged remarks like Wadsworth's must not be allowed to taint Johnson's leadership.

Just to clarify - I hear it was an off-the-record meeting, not an interview. Advisers like McGrath have to meet all sorts of 'stakeholders' in that way.

Why the hell is Boris so skittish about some Labour activist writing a frankly 6th Form standard of article/rant on the internet?

http://www.blackinbritain.co.uk/MarcWadsworth.htm

Although Marc Wadsworth is probably best remembered for his involvement with a host of politically active groups in the late 80s mid 90s, he is still remembered as being a news reader on Thames News before the regional broadcasters memorably lost the franchise.
He has since been actively involved with the Labour Party and an assortment of Black political groups and movements including the Anti-Racist Alliance (ARA), the Black section of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) to name but a few.
Wadsworth is the current editor of BlaqSport a monthly magazine celebrating Black sporting achievement.

His article has been online since Friday so he's obviously been having trouble hawking it to serious media outlets - until now!

I'm as disappointed about this as Graeme. what happened to the anti-pc Boris who wrote senssibly about the 'politics of identity'? Get some balls Boris!

And I hope Mr Wadsworth sleeps well tonight in the knowledge of what he has done. I'm sure he will.

Is this a sign of things to come. Will the Tories bend and trim at the first sign of opposition from the apparatchiks who dominate the public services. There will no change while they spread fear by false accusation.

Boris has shown his weakness to the grievance mongers and diversity hustlers.
They will come back for more!

W

If he is not a racist why is he going? It is disappointing that Boris has not stood by him.

This from the Times' report on it:

"The Times understands that [Boris] was also motivated in part by an intention to show distinct differences between his administration and that of his predecessor, Ken Livingstone."

Can somebody explain this paragraph to me?

Is it referring to him acting decisively when there are questions about his staff? If so, it's pretty unfair to compare McGrath to Lee Jasper & co!

I agree with Graeme Archer that this all smacks of the kind of pc identity politics that Livingstone represented.

With regret I think James McGrath had to go - but not because I believe he was in any way racist, but because he was either not experienced enough or he took his eye off the ball! If I was being interviewed by Darcus Howe - whether on line or anywhere else - the lights would be flashing inside my head with a sign saying "WARNING WARNING" and I would be ultra-ultra careful about what I was saying!!! Howe is a nasty, dangerous piece of work who sees racism around every corner. Boris needs to get some wily operators around him.

David Linsday, you should check your facts. Boris Johnson won 1.4m first preference votes, which is 0.2m more than Ken Livingstone's combined total of 1.2m. BNP votes (of which there were 69,000) made absolutely no difference in the end one way or the other, and Boris was therefore most definitely NOT elected on the back of them.

9.45pm: Iain Dale writes '"All Boris has done is attempt to appease people who are quite frankly not capable of being appeased. What he should have done is stand by the man who has stood by him through thick and thin over the last eight months. Instead, Boris has hung James McGrath out to dry - apparently either with the connivance of or at the behest of the Party leadership - in the most despicable and and cowardly manner possible."
...................................

Iain is spot on here and Boris must be extremely naive if he thinks this action will appease anyone.
McGrath's comment was crass and stupid, he may deserve the sack for that but not for the reasons Boris gave.

How many times does the racist industry quote "middle class white male" and "everybody hates the English". It must be on a weekly.
basis.
What a sad society we now have in this country.
The Labour Government pander to the minority pressure groups and are proud of it.
The most recent exception was the majority of Labour MPs voting against abortion reform as they do not acknowledge the rights of the unborn child.

Mark Fulford @ 00:43 - I think an answer could be along the lines that there has been an increasing trend recently for older migrants from the Caribbean to wish to return to their homelands. It would be very hard, if not impossible, to find a correlation between their wish to return to the Islands of their birth and the election of a new London Mayor.

You are called racist in England if you dare to say you are English.
Shame on Boris.

Normally, Boris is the last person one might describe as being politically correct. I suspect that his normal reaction would have been to support McGrath upon the grounds that not only were the remarks not racist and would not have been taken as such by anyone, whatever their ethnicity, except extremist race agitators, but also that a robust common sense approach would have increased, rather than diminished Boris's political standing.
I doubt therefore if his stance was motivated by self interest.
David Cameron, on the other hand, is far more prone to political correctness (and concerned about personal popularity) and would immediately have publicly distanced himself himself from Boris had he supported McGrath, as he has previously done with others who, however unjustly, have been accused of racism.
I suspect that considerable pressure may have been brought to bear upon Boris from CCHQ "in the interests of party unity"


The Deputy Editor uses the excuse that the interview was "off the record". He therefore demonstrates his own inexperience and naivety. There is no such thing as "off the record" these days. Unscripted comments in interviews find their way onto the internet, notably Youtube, and into the mainstream media.

Perhaps the Deputy Editor can enlighten us about what was to be gained from an "off the record" briefing of Wadsworth. His track record would scare off any seasoned Conservative PR professional. Conservatives do not have to court extremist hacks to win the ethnic vote.

An experienced politician like Sir Simon Milton would not have made such a mistake.

Dep Ed:

I second what Libertarian just said.


"The Deputy Editor uses the excuse that the interview was "off the record". He therefore demonstrates his own inexperience and naivety."

No - I was responding to those who said that McGrath was unwise to go for an 'interview' with the man.

If a representative of Boris hadn't agreed to meet him that would have been used against him. You're screwed if you do, screwed if you don't with people like this I'm afraid.

The most extraordinary remark in this whole affair is the original suggestion that older immigrants from the Caribbean might want to return if Boris Johnson were elected mayor. What possible reason might there be for such a bizarre thought ? That they had a fond attachment to bendy buses ? That they didn't want the capital cluttered up with newly planted trees ? That it was the prospect of a Labour run London County Council that brought them all the way to England from St Lucia in the 1950's ? Such a ludicrous remark deserved the flippancy of the reply it got.

It may well not have been fair on this chap McGrath who I had never heard of despite taking quite a close interest in the Johnson Mayoralty. But politics is not fair. He was stupid to make the remark - not to anticipate how it could be spun against him - and therefore it was right that he should go. There is no room for amateurism.

After the attempted smearing of Boris before the election, he could not afford a "Boris defends "adviser" making "racist" remarks" row. Frankly I find it a sign of welcome ruthlessness. If McGrath had had half his brain in gear, he would have responded to the Howe remark by questioning on what possible basis people would "go back", pointing out that "going back" is BNP talk, and suggesting that it is insulting to such people who have made their homes here to suggest that they are going to leave, even if it were true that they didn't like the new Mayor.

Finally, someone above said Boris got elected because of second pref BNP votes. I presume this has not been challenged merely because it is so evidently complete rubbish.

Deputy Editor wrote "No - I was responding to those who said that McGrath was unwise to go for an 'interview' with the man. If a representative of Boris hadn't agreed to meet him that would have been used against him. You're screwed if you do, screwed if you don't with people like this I'm afraid."

Wrong again! James McGrath, as a political adviser, should have not agreed to have been interviewed. Wadsworth should have met Guto Harri if he was to have been given the privilege of an off the record briefing. Harri should have been in control. Even if he allowed McGrath to meet Wadsworth without a PR official present, he made a huge mistake.

Companies do not allow executives to brief journalists without a PR official being consulted and present at the meeting(s). There is a proper process to ensure that gaffes are not made as they can affect the company's reputation and share price.

The Deputy Editor's inexperience and naivety is shocking.

don't agree with it, but understand why - mud sticks, and Boris is trying to be whiter than white. I just think that if he delivers on his promises, people won't care about an off the cuff remark from an advisor taken out of context. My reaction though, is that if that is how people are treated, who wants to go into politics, work hard, give a silly question a silly response, and then get branded with some sort of unpleasant label, and noone has your back.

"Wrong again! James McGrath, as a political adviser, should have not agreed to have been interviewed.

Like I said, he didn't agree to be 'interviewed'. It wasn't his job to be a public face of the administration.

Wadsworth should have met Guto Harri if he was to have been given the privilege of an off the record briefing. Harri should have been in control. Even if he allowed McGrath to meet Wadsworth without a PR official present, he made a huge mistake."

Sorry, wrong again. Guto came in after Boris was elected, this happened during the frenetic heat of the campaign. Do you honestly think seasoned political advisers like McGrath need to have a 'PR man' with them when they undertake their many meetings with representatives and journos? It's his bread n butter.

'London is blessed with a rich ethnic and cultural diversity. It is one of the main reasons why I regard it as the greatest city on earth, and I am determined, as Mayor, to serve each and every community with equal passion and commitment.

What drivel !! And what a recipe for complete disintigration when some disaster strikes. He has spent too long at the Notting Hill Carnival !

Boris has crumbled at the first test.

Guto Harri was appointed on 9th may.

According to tday's evening standard the conversation between McGrath and Wadsworth took place on 20th May. Despite respeated enquiries to clarify his remarks McGrath then did not respond to Wadsworth.

I know you are slightly compromised by your cheerleading for McGrath to be appointed to Boris's campaign. But the facts are pretty clear here. he cocked up and should either have left contact to the press office or given a more diplomatic answer.

As for his "bread and butter" see Joghn Glen's post earlier. Fulfilled a variety of jobs in a junior capacity and worked very hard and very loyally - but he was not and should never have been appointed as a senior strategist.

Bah, I must've mixed up the dates. My point completely stands though - there was nothing wrong in meeting this guy in the way that he did, he just let himself down with that untypically tactless comment.

Your last point is a matter of opinion that most people I've spoken to in the party don't share. His Aussie straight-talking must have left him a couple of detractors who come on here with negative comments whenever relevant! He proved himself as CofS to the Chairman by all accounts and was held in sufficient esteem for George Osborne to take him on when Maude moved on from the Chairmanship.

We knew that David Cameron would find race matters difficult (Patrick Mercer issue earlier) but did think that Boris Johnson had a bit more spine in him.
It appears that something with 'race' attached to it is still effective in making the Conservative leadership shrink away like the devil before garlic!

The Deputy Editor says: "Do you honestly think seasoned political advisers like McGrath need to have a 'PR man' with them when they undertake their many meetings with representatives and journos?"

Judging by the way he fell straight into a hostile journalist's trap - Yes.

But I don't see it's the role of advisers, senior or otherwise, to be doing "off the record" press interviews. Senior civil servants don't do it. Politicians and press officers speak to the press, not any old member of staff who feels like it. The Mayoralty should operate the same. These appointees are not there in their own right - only Boris and the GLA members have been elected. A few others with "cabinet" positions might also be due that authority; but this was ill-disciplined.

It's interesting to read the comments on Iain Dale's blog where, despite his partisanship against Boris on this, there is quite a push back by commenters who agree with me. But then our heads have not been turned by personal regard/friendship/admiration etc of the sacked person (all of which aspects are beside the point). There are some things (many things?) where not being such an insider would lead to wiser judgements.

DE

A bit unfair. I was praising his work but putting his seniority in context. Anybody at Westminster will tell you a CoS role other than for the leader is largely an admin role. See London Observer and John Glen in the other thread.

"'London is blessed with a rich ethnic and cultural diversity. It is one of the main reasons why I regard it as the greatest city on earth, and I am determined, as Mayor, to serve each and every community with equal passion and commitment.

What drivel !! "

I can't see that this is drivel at all. Those of us who choose willingly to live in London value its diversity. One wonders if Rod Sellers, who thinks it is, is a Londoner. When he complains that Boris may have spent too much time in Notting Hill, perhaps he just means that he has spent too much time in London. Boris is London's Mayor, not the Mayor of the Shires, the Mayor of one political party or the Mayor for people who think everything was much better in monocrome in the 1950s.

Boris is not sacking James because his comments are out of line with Boris´own views, but becuase such comments fall into the hands of Boris´opposition. Moreover, James is being sacked because his comments were stupid, even if placed back into a non'racist context. Who has ever suggested that immigrants who don´t like it in England can´t emigrate, the comments sound dubiously like if you want to be treated fairly and you don´t think you are, bugger off...its a stupid comment, purposely open to ambiguity, and as it was for an interview, as stated, James should expect everything he gets, the game is politics, its flabby and loose, its not a usual job, think before you open your mouths.

'ConservativeHome celebrates multiracial Britain'

Why? It's grossly overrated. The so called diversity we are all meant to 'celebrate' isn't worth a bean. At least not at the expense of English culture. It's one or the other, unless you live in somewhere like Henley. Monoracial Britain was infinitely better than the current mess. I'm living the 'dream' at the moment and when I stopped to think really hard about it I realised how truly awful it is. I want to feel like I'm living in England again. I miss it badly.

There is a difference "Antisocialist" between multiracialism of which I approve and multiculturalism which I do not.

The whole point of citizenship is that if you don't like something, you change it by democratic means. Why should an Australian be defended for telling citizens that if they don't like some they should go elsewhere; no wonder the pool of conservative voters fails to grow. What a poor political operator McGrath is.If he was smart, he would have realised that those older West Indians are largely natural Conservatives; you have to ask yourself why his imagination failed so spectacularly. You deserve to fail to thrive because you see superficial colour before natural constituency. Shame on you!

"Sorry, but what is wrong with that? If immigrants don't like it here, why do they come? Surely immigrants come because they like Britain, not because they don't like it. It is therefore logical for them to leave/not come if they don't like it here."

i believe that from the perspective of being from the right of the tory party such a commentary from one of its members would not appear to be racist, since that racism is inherent and embedded.

to take an extreme view point - just as adolf hitler would not have seen his holocaust of the jewish people as racist but merely a normal attitude to have amongst his friends and colleagues.

unfortunately the commentary is inherently racist, since the discussion is about an immigrant group who have never been viewed as being british or as being an integrated part of the social environment. there has never been an acceptance by the conservative or the labour groups a limited tolerance maybe but thats all.

it is rather like boris johnson, who seems to go out on a limb to disassociate himself from his islamic roots, his muslim background is denigrated by his ignorance of the nuances of koran and islamic teaching.

what he is unable to do is unlink islam and the way some muslims may behave , and yet he and others here have no difficulty in having that delinkage with jewish, christian, hindu acts of violence by their religious zealots.

all boris has done is to further expose the real face of the conservatives and more importantly reinforces the perception that he has surrounded himself with right wing bigots.


Londoner said:

"Those of us who choose willingly to live in London value its diversity. One wonders if Rod Sellers, who thinks it is, is a Londoner. When he complains that Boris may have spent too much time in Notting Hill, perhaps he just means that he has spent too much time in London. Boris is London's Mayor, not the Mayor of the Shires, the Mayor of one political party or the Mayor for people who think everything was much better in monocrome in the 1950s."


Do Londoners belong to some separate 'Race' ? if so, the social disintegration of Britain is almost complete. And 'Yes' frankly, many of the fundamental values of life WERE better in the 50's.

wendy mann:
"To take an extreme view point - just as adolf hitler would not have seen his holocaust of the jewish people as racist but merely a normal attitude to have amongst his friends and colleagues."

I can just see it -

Adolf Hitler:
"I'm not a racist, but..."

Your comment is silly because the modern concept of racism emerged specifically to describe Nazi ideology. It then became applied to similar ideologies such as that of the KKK.


I cannot believe you would be so hysterical as to describe my comment as a PERSONAL ATTACK.

McGrath is a party lacky that had no more to do with Boris's campaign than anyone else in the office. If anything he was Lynton's rather charmless bag carrier. Few are sad to see him leave.

His rudeness was his downfall. Boo f***ing hoo.

I know James mcGrath and he is a thoroughly decent, good, kind and intelligent person. He is not a racist or a homophobe - he is a classic liberal, generous-spirited cosmopolitan. Unfortunately this event means that people will be more guarded and politic in their dealings with each other and that is a bad thing. "Sunshine" is a friendly term of familiarity in Australia. I am afraid this is the Conservative Party's loss as James was a good and faithful servant of the party who has done nothing wrong apart from being open and honest.


Tend to agree with most here.

As a member of the political class you can act in ways that most people would regard as being grossly immoral, even criminal, and get away with it.

But say something they don't like about the Holy Trinity of Race, Gender, and Sexuality, and you're finished.

Boris Johnson owes the Left absolutely nothing. He could, and should, have stuck to fingers up to them on this.

Rod Sellers asks: "Do Londoners belong to some separate 'Race' ? if so, the social disintegration of Britain is almost complete."

No, Londoners per se do not belong to a separate race but most of us do have different attitudes to diversity and race issues from much of the country. For a start we don't greatly define ourselves by race. My point is that Boris's action (and McGrath's stupidity) need to be seen in a London context. That context - of a successful international city not defined by race - is very different from the leafy shires. Also different from the Midlands cities where sadly the effect of immigration has been much less successful because it has involved much greater concentrations of particular minorities, rather than a mix of all.

I define myself as British and a Londoner, in common with Londoners of many varied ethnic and cultural backgrounds (although I am white and all sides of my family have lived in these islands for generations, except when trying to run India LOL). I do not particularly define myself as being English.

To this extent I agree with Rod - London is becoming increasingly different from the rest of the country. But I am not in favour of a London (and hinterland) city state yet. I do however think that our Mayor should reflect the attitudes of the "city state", not the leafy shires who might prefer we were in the 1950s. 1950s London was still a place of grim and grinding poverty in many parts, a place of casual and accepted racism against, for instance, West Indian tenants, a place where homosexualtiy was illegal and divorcees not allowed to meet the Queen. Thoroughly run down areas even in my memory back to the 1970s are now prosperous and bright. Yes, there are huge problems of knife crime etc but we Londoners know how much better a place we live in now. Boris's actions show that he knows this too.

Londoner, is it really necessary to go on in such a hectoring tone? People live and work in London for a variety of reasons. There is not an identikit Londoner. Many people live here for mainly economic reasons, not because they are hysterically happy about the "joys" of living in one of the most overpriced cities on the planet with appalling infrastructure. Your comments about the views of people outside London on matters of race, etc come perilously close to disdainful snobbery.

Your description of 1950's London is correct in some respects but in a number of others is wide of the mark. Homosexual acts were illegal nationwide in the 1950's and divorces not meeting the Queen was presumably not a London phenomenon. I doubt if she met any in Edinburgh either. I have no nostalgia for London in the fifties (I am a child of the sixties) but you omit to point out that the level of violent crime in London in those days was far far lower, and younger people on average earnings stood a much better chance of living in reasonably priced accomodation in nice areas, even though mch of the city had been bombed only 10 or so years beforehand. I know because that it is exactly what my parents (a young teacher and a minor civil servant) experienced.


Londoner, I imagine the absolutely thumping votes for Boris Johnson in places like Havering, Croydon, Bexley, Bromley, Barnet etc. will have come from people who are sick and tired of the endless accusations of racism made against people like McGrath. The people who are offended by what McGrath said will have largely voted for Livingstone. They are owed nothing.

"Boris Johnson, a right-wing Conservative, might just trigger off a mass exodus of older Caribbean migrants back to our homelands" - THIS is racist comment.

"Well, let them go if they don’t like it here" - THIS is a stupid comment.

Mcgrath faced the wrong charge, but he got the right sentence.

Michael

Sorry if it came across as hectoring - if so, it was in reaction to what I feel on much of this thread is largely a non-London reaction. I did actually refer to knife crime and I did say "most" Londoners, not all. I am happy to modify that to say that "on average" Londoners are more likely to welcome diversity. I accept some live here for work reasons but surely most people working in London who dislike it choose to commute instead (particularly bearing in mind property prices)?

Boris also got much higher votes than before - often genuine switches from Livingstone and the Lib Dems - in more central areas. No candidate can get elected without getting lots of votes in both inner and outer London. Boris's tendency to (in my terms) be sensitive to or (in others' terms) pandering to the multi-racial character of London was already evident during the campaign in such matters as him participating in the "Operation Black Vote" initiative to get people to vote to try to keep out the BNP. People did not vote for him because of what he had written about "peccininies" or whatever, but despite of it, and because they were convinced that he was genuinely in tune with modern London.


Thinking further, I don't really think there is a London-wide political consciousness. London's boroughs (and districts within borougsh) differ from each other politically at least as much as they differ from other parts of the country.

Sean, I agree. I find the dreary Livingstoneesque propaganda about London being the hippest, most diverse place on the face of the Earth preposterous. You would think the rest of the UK, where 50 million plus people manage to live quite happily, was Alabama in the 1920's. Johnson clearly feels the need to genuflect to this nonsense. In fact, London has become a place where little people feel more and more crushed by the power and cash of others. Londoner, thanks for coming back to me.


I think an awful lot of people, who are reasonably affluent, but not rich, who start having children in their thirties, regard London as a great place to leave.

"Wadwsworth may not be a racist".. what? How dare you suggest Wadsworth is not a racist?

He has been posting quite nasty anti-white Australian sentiments. Is it tolerable for a person to insult, offend, and hurt a group of people because he is black? Is this why people dishonestly suggest Wadsworth is not a racist?

Marc Wadsworth is a nasty vile racist. His goal is to rubbish the Tory party, but he doesn't care who becomes collateral damage. Perhaps he is thinking that Australians are not being hurt by his generalisations. But in truth his taunts are typical of those experienced by white Australians here in the UK, particular from black individuals.

Allowing black racism to persist is disgusting. It is not tolerated in the white community, and I'm sick of white people allowing Marc Wadwsworth to use abusive language towards Australian people.

Marc Wadsworth may be an embarrassment to all black people - at least I hope so, I really hope the black community do not stand for his racism, I would be very sad if they supported his racism. Marc Wadsworth does not want equality, he wants supremacy.

I'm wondering if Marc Wadsworth is insulting the peoples he seeks to further the cause of. Is dishonest, lack of logic, and hatred the attributes he wants to typify peoples of his kind as?

If Marc Wadsworth has a shred of human decency, then he would stop trying to further the cause of black people in the name of foul and dark hearted behaviour. He would cease his racist tirades.

Marc Wadsworth would do better passing his mantle onto a man of intelligence, logic, and respect. Please, Marc Wadsworth, do something to help your peoples, stop hurting them as well as everyone else.

"Your comment is silly because the modern concept of racism emerged specifically to describe Nazi ideology. It then became applied to similar ideologies such as that of the KKK."


i think you probably get the point but dont have an honest answer.

btw there are no races in the human species other than the one we all belong to. that is the science.

when we talk about racism we are actually talking about bigotry, petty prejudices and the fear mongering created through ignorance.

as for 'racism' being in the domain of the nazis or the kkk we all that is not the whole truth since we find it alive and well within the british political system.

it would appear that the conservatives just cant help themselves in encouraging 'racists' into the party fold.

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