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"Stupid and undemocratic"; Baroness Tonge talks Lords reform and NHS

Baroness Jenny Tongue talks to Laura Hughes about reform of the House of Lords and the NHS (Thumbnail credit Photo credit: chrisjohnbeckett)

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Since the existence of the Liberal Party and Lloyd George, reform of the House of Lords, has remained a long held policy for the Liberal Democrats. In the 2010 general election all three parties promised at least a partly elected House of Lords in their manifestos. On August 6th, Nick Clegg announced that plans to reform the House of Lords were to be abandoned, increasing tension within the already frail coalition.

Baroness Jenny Tonge told Nouse she accepted a place in the Lords, to give herself a platform for Palestinians and to add her vote to those wanting reform. Tongue has expressed her frustration at the renounced reform and maintains her belief that the House of Lords: "is an anachronism and makes us look stupid and undemocratic, whilst preaching democracy all over the world."

The commonly held argument is that the House of Lords would lose expertise if moved to elections. The Baroness believes "we could CO OPT expertise and there is nothing to stop independent experts standing for election either. The truth is that two thirds of the Lords use it as a club and are only there for the kudos it gives them in their business lives, or for the money they have donated to a political party."

So is it petty or defiant of Nick Clegg, to vow to vote against agreed Coalition policy, in revenge for David Cameron's failure to deliver on House of Lords reform? Baroness Tonge revealed she will be voting against legislation to cut the number of MPs in the House of Commons to 600- if there is no movement on House of Lords reform. "Yes, I think Nick is right to say he will not go along with the Boundary changes when the Tories have stitched us up on AV and House of Lords reform. I wish he had behaved similarly on other issues too. Perhaps he is waking up at last!"

So should the Liberal Democrats have shown this level of defiance against NHS reform? "Indeed we should have resisted NHS reform- indeed it was not in the Coalition Agreement or in either party's manifesto so it's a bit rich that Nick is quoting Coalition Agreement at Cameron, but as I said, maybe he is waking up at last! I voted with the opposition on the NHS Bill and was told off by the Whips for being disloyal-to what I asked them?"

Is it fair to say the NHS is at the mercy of the private sector? "Yes the NHS is finished now. There will be health services of varying quality and extent depending on where you live and who your GP is, paid for out of general taxation. The private sector will gradually take over all services."


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2 Comments

Curtis Sinclair Posted on Tuesday 28 Aug 2012

Who cares what Jenny Tonge thinks about anything?

I really do not have the foggiest as to why you have based your article on the witterings of this monstrous character, although I am particularly impressed by the devious way in which you skim over the reasons why the Baroness is no longer a member of the Liberal Democrats. Let me enlighten the reader as you have failed to - she was pushed out for refusing to apologise for her public anti-Semitic rants.

Tonge is a vicious, Jew-hating racist whose past inclusion in the parliamentary Lib Dems merely demonstrates that party's ignorance, incompetence, and perhaps most worryingly, tolerance of such a character.

Time and time again Tonge has equated the state of Israel with Jewish people worldwide, holding the latter responsible for the actions of the former - her appearance at the event 'Is Israel an Aparteid State?' at Middlesex University comes to mind as one of her worst.

At that event, our dear Baroness not only compared Israel (a country in which the most free, the most prosperous, and dare I say it, the most happy Arabs live) to NAZI GERMANY but also made the ridiculous claim that Jewish people worldwide have a duty to stop Israel's imagined apartheid, declaring, with no small amount of glee, that Israel was not going to last forever.

When some students, disgusted by her outburst (including such downright lies as "the Jewish Constitution is being changed to make Israel a Jewish-only state") began to question her, she recognised some to be Jewish, issuing a torrent of abuse. Content, she allowed her fellow panellist, Ken O'Keefe, to stand, sitting quietly and respectfully as he denounced the entire Jewish people as Nazis complicit in the 9/11 attacks, completely unphased by the nonsense being spouted.

Dismissed, quite rightly, as a raving loony by most Lib Dems (she has in the past given credit to a claim by Hezbollah that the Israeli Army was secretly harvesting organs in Haiti), her appearance on York's campus seems to have once again given her a sheen of respectability.

For some, unfathomable reason, the English Department recently decided to give her a platform to talk about free speech. (Why they wanted someone who described the murderous Assad regime as 'very likeable' to talk about free speech I do not know. I just thank God I do History.) Let's not be as blind to the Baroness as they were.

By handing Tonge a public audience on this website, by diverting attention away from her horrendous outbursts, and by lending your own good name and the good name of this paper to her, you give Tonge the publicity with which she can rebuild her reputation.

Jenny Tonge has been outed for what she really is, a Jew-hating fantastic. Lets keep it that way.

You can see videos of her appearance at Middlesex University here: http://www.thecommentator.com/article/944/fanatical_uk_lib_dem_jenny_tonge_joins_new_hate_fest_against_jewish_state/page/1#article_content_top

A little history:
http://blogs.jpost.com/content/york-pen-baroness-tonge-and-politics-hatred

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Tyrion Lannister Posted on Thursday 6 Sep 2012

Got to feel for the Palestinians, having people like Baroness Tonge and George Galloway as the public face of their struggle

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