Tuesday, September 23, 2008

"ironique et eurosceptique"


So long, farewell, auf weidersein, goodbyeee. Ladies and gentlemen, I am sad to announce that from henceforth England Expects shall be consigned to the dustbins of history. I say this with a heavy heart, but it is the case. And this is why.

Yesterday I was summoned by my Secretary General and informed that a formal complaint had been made about my posting on this blog. My activities were found to be in contravention of the Staff Code of Conduct

In particular I was in breech of Article 12 and 17. That is
"Article 12
An official shall refrain from any action or behaviour which might reflect adversely upon his position.

1. Subject to Article 15, an official wishing to engage in an outside activity, whether paid or unpaid, or to carry out any assignment outside the Communities, shall first obtain the permission of the Appointing Authority. Permission shall be refused only if the activity or assignment in question is such as to interfere with the performance
of the official's duties or is incompatible with the interests of the institution.

Article 17
1. An official shall refrain from any unauthorised disclosure of information received in the line of duty, unless that information has already been made public or is accessible to the public.
2. An official shall continue to be bound by this obligation after leaving the
service.
The problem was at the beginning of the month I had posted a piece about some gender language absurdity (please note that the staff regulations talk about his. I had included the name of the author and she had requested that I remove the name. This I did, as she pointed out that she had been phoned by a couple of journalists and was, as an official unable to talk to them.

Notwithstanding me removing her name, somebody made an official complaint about this blog to the powers that be. The Secretary General of the Parliament, Harald Rømer then wrote to my group pointing out my clear breech of the staff rules. I had, it said posted article upon England expects, a website that is ""ironique et eurosceptique". (One wonders which was the worse transgression, the scepticism or the fact that I laugh at them?).

The upshot is that I have a formal warning and, if I continue to blog then 'sanctions' may be applied. Given that the sanctions amount to upwards of a four month docking of wages, I really cannot afford to continue.

Now I do not say that I am not in breech of the staff regulations, I am. But it is odd when one considers that I employed to be the Press officer of the UK delegation to the Ind/Dem Group, which is the UK Independence Party. My job is to bring the institutions into disrepute, which I am doing, well if I am any good I should be doing.

The rules come with guidelines

The above provision establishes the general obligation as regards circumspection
whereby officials and other servants, while remaining free to express their opinions as the fundamental principles of human rights and citizens' rights allow them to do, must observe a degree of moderation and conduct themselves at all times with a due sense of proportion and propriety.

3. Any failure to observe the obligation as regards circumspection is assessed according to the nature and level of the duties performed and the circumstances, for it is more incumbent on the most senior officials and other servants to show self-control in what they say and write, as well as in their attitudes.


The point being that there interpretation as to my lack of circumspection is key.

Now think about the report that is going through the Parliament and is discussed by Bruno Waterfield here and you will see a very scary picture emerging.

53 comments:

Anonymous said...

Join the Provisional Wing of UKIP and go underground.

ukipwebmaster said...

To coin a phrase - Don't let the bastards get you down.

Anonymous said...

So long and thanks for all the fish.

Derek Bennett EU-Sceptic said...

Good luck Gawain, I am sure a man of your ingenuity will find another way to get at the swines.

Anonymous said...

Well Gawain the den of thieves are having their revenge. Perhaps you could re-title the blog Wessex Wants or to be really ironic 'The South West Region of the EU Expects' We would all understand what it really meant.

Alec Yates

Anonymous said...

I suppose it had to happen sooner or later. These people will stop at nothing. At this rate it won't be long before the heretics just vanish into the nacht und nebel.

Thank you; your blog has been much appreciated.

Boudicca said...

We in UKIP are destined for the gulag.
To any EU official or spy reading this: VA TE FAIRE FOUTRE!!!!!!!

Bob Feal-martinez said...

Every single democratic blogger needs to copy paste this story. We need to embarrass the EU. They hate adverse comments.

Lets hope UKIP HQ do a You Tube video exposing this. How can UKIP/Ind-Dem's official Press Officer do hi job within the rules of the Parliament. This stupidity needs exposing.

Gawain Towler said...

You are so kind.

Anonymous said...

Breach.

It's BREACH, mate.

A breech is something to do with a field gun. Or maybe a birth.

But hard luck anyway, and good luck too, and nil illegitemati carborundum, as the second commenter said.

Anonymous said...

Grow a pair and keep posting or are your wages more important to you than what you perceive to be the truth about the EU.

Boudicca said...

If you had a pair yourself, anonnymouse, you could get yourself a wife & kids and try to keep them without what you "perceive to be" wages.
No doubt we would soon detect the smell of burning martyrs.

Anonymous said...

Whats Ironic is a eurosceptic stopping his blog against the EU because it "might" fine him some wages paid to him by the EU.
lol

John Franklyn said...

You write the content, let someone else post it under their name. Get across the message, but in a different way.

Grahnlaw said...

These internal regulations should not apply to an employee of a political group.

They are highly questionable concerning regular EP or EU employess, because freedom of speech belongs to everyone.

The European Parliament should apologise to you and scrap their staff regulations as far as they gag free speech.

Politically, the European Parliament signed up to the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights in 2001. Time to implement it.

I hope you reconsider and continue blogging.

wonkotsane said...

Don't let the bastards grind you down. Get in touch with me through Bloggers4UKIP.

Eursoc said...

This is appalling!

I hope you find a way to continue the good work. Would press releases issued by your party and containing the same sort of material that you post on this blog constitute a similar breach?

If you are willing to produce them, I would be happy to publish. Doubtless other Euro-realist bloggers would be keen to do the same.

Gawain Towler said...

Hey look, I was in breach (ahem thanks for that). The rules are pretty clear - at least in one instance.
I am not being stopped from doing my basic job, but I cannot do things under my own name.
So annoyed yes, pissed of, of course. Pepared to be unable to support a wife and two children, well think about it.
There are always means and ways. Though this is not a happy example from a place that boasts about pluralism.

Thanks again for all your support. I suspect that this is not yet entirely over.

c.j said...

I have informed our editoral staff of this piece of news. I will miss your blog very much, you did a great job

C.J. http://www.Metro.se (part of global Metro newspaper)

Colin Campbell said...

This kind of stuff is going to be more common. Good luck. Powerful people do not like things that they do not control.

Simon Richards said...

Yet another outrageous suppresion of free speech by the EU - and yet another reason why we'd be BETTER OFF OUT.

I have very much enjoyed reading your blog, Gawain. Congratulations on it. I know you will continue to do good Eurorealist work beyond the blog.

Best of British,

Not a sheep said...

Freedom of speech, I think not. Good luck in your future endeavours.

Grahnlaw said...

The Sakharov prize was instituted by the European Parliament in honour of one dissident.

Now they have a candidate for the next round of nominations.

Gawain Towler said...

Ralph

I was thinking more the European Parliament's journalism prize, online version.

Designed to get the message of the Parliament and its activities into the public realm.

Anybody prepared to nominate me?

ukipwebmaster said...

How do we go about nominating you?

Boudicca said...

Yes SIR.
Let's get this show on the road!!!

Gordon said...

Why aren't I suprised they won't let you comment?

The B'stards are scared of people knowing the truth, they always have been.

Bin Laden had the right idea, just wish he'd f**ked Brussels and the Houses of Parliament instead of the Twin Towers.

Child of Europe said...

Don't stop blogging right here...

Take down the post which originates from an internal memo, and keep blogging as usual, and if they slap a fine on you, take them to court...

Send a letter of apology for using the memo.

Then send a letter explaining that you will keep blogging as a concerned European citizen.

If you have a problem- we're going to tackle this all together... And there's plenty of bloggers- anonymous and not, who have the means to make a difference in this matter.

From what I hear, some have already started...

Best of luck.
Don't you dare stop blogging!!!!

Man in a Shed said...

The answer might be as follows:

1) Get other people to join your blog.
2) Leak your posts to them and others.

Let the jackbooted ones sort that little lot out.

The Daily Pundit said...

Nice photograph. But aren't you supposed to take your clothes off first?

marksany said...

This just shows how the French concept of freedom varies so much from the Anglo-Saxon idea. Still, when the UKis finally subsumed into the European Superstate/Greater France, we will finally understand and won't see this sort of thing as a problem.

Anonymous said...

Dearest, I never understand a word you say anyway, but I am sorry to hear that once again your wit and wisdom have been silenced. This must mean that you are doing something right. Love the photo.

Anonymous said...

consider yourself lucky they gave you fair warning.....other employers would just have dismissed you...end of story.
Sorry, no sympathy here......you are happy to take their money so grow up, there is a qpq which is that you owe your employer/paymaster a duty of faithful service.
If you want to be a hero....tell them to stick their job and write what you like
but no, you want the money....and do you know what....you're still moaning about it.
yeah, grow up or grow balls.

Anonymous said...

G,

when we had that lunch in the EP canteen with my Greek friends, and you were telling us your stories about motorcycles and Sri Lanka, I remember thinking to myself that it was people like you that built and made the British Empire great.

Keep up the good fight, my friend.

N from Strasbourg

Anonymous said...

Well it's got you a lot more comments than usual.

nanne said...

Have you considered going to the European Court of Human Rights? ;-)

Seriously: give them hell, and get back soon.

Deb Acle said...

Appalling. When are the masses going to wake up and realise what a Stalinist project the EU really is?

I hope you'll find 'ways' and 'ways'... there are many out here in the blogosphere who'll oblige with support.

Robert H Mercer said...

Did men really die fighting Hitler and his ilk in an effort to protect our freedoms? It would appear that if they did it was a wasted effort when a bunch of no-hopers, out for their own gain, try to muzzle a genuine critic. As an Australian I am lucky not to be subservient to the idiots in the EU [is that the beginning of the word eunuchs?]. I would definitely hate to be controlled by a bunch of morons living in another country. How about you give me the site, plus the info and I will blog it! BTW eurosceptique? what Richard coined that word? Perhaps he mispelled it and meant euroseptic!

Wyrdtimes said...

England does not expect you to stand upon the burning deck.

But it does expect that you won't cave in to the first feeble threat from some third rate totalitarian dick heads.

You Sir should be ashamed.

Carry on regardless - call their bluff. Take the story mainstream in the process.

It's only money and I bet you have it in stacks. If you're broke put a paypal button on your site.


Hold the line and face 'em down.

Anonymous said...

What a bunch of Bastards!!!!

Long live free speech....

Hitler would have been proud of the EU.

Alfred the Ordinary said...

You are more valuable inside the system than fighting from outside, so I understand your decision. I will be sorry to see your blog go though. I have used the picture on my blog; hope that is OK. All the best in June 09 - hopefully you will joining the likes of Dan Hannan, keeping us informed, from the inside.

Sacerdote said...

Particularly ironique in view of the statement that

"Harald Romer intends to include the principle of better legislation' and communication with citizens as part of his responsibilities in his new position."

Alfred the Ordinary said...

Sacerdote, thanks for that link. Of course the EU and I might define "better legislation' and communication with citizens" completely differently, which is one of the problems with the EU; Definitions. EU freedom and my idea of freedom are very different, as the European Arrest Warrant testifies.

Mark Preston said...

I have emailed the EP with the following: "It is the European Parliament that needs to change, not the 'blogger: Elaib Harvey. European love of the "political correctness" must not go uncommented. Shame on the EP"

And when the web-based form for sending emails to the EP asked for what region of the world, I answered: Western Hemisphere, North America. I hope they won't get lost in all that.

Deb Acle said...

Mark - come on, you've gone and done their heads in now! We know these people get lost going from any where in the same building to the accounting office...

Dan said...

God i can't stand the bloody evil that is the EU. Keep on blogging mate!

eulogist said...

Far be it from me to understand the way EP's powers that be think, but at least on the basis of what you quote from the staff regulations I don't see how you are in breach of anything. Yes, you are for publishing the internal thing. No, you are not for blogging or continuing to blog on EU politics.

Love the Sakharov Prize suggestion.

(Oh, and it's "auf Wiedersehen"...)

Anonymous said...

By the way, it's 'breach'.

villeroi said...

Elaib Harvey could come back... and win the Sakharov Prize!

The EP is a very expensive talkshop we could get rid of. Just looking at the MEPs from my country it's easy to understand how wrong things are going in that institution. (This said, I still support further integration).

I guess we'll have to wait for the elections. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

"Declan Ganley, Ireland's Mysterious Mr. No, sponsored by neocon lobbyist group" - Die Presse
Goaway Towler !

Anonymous said...

Poor Gawain, getting a gagging order from the European Parliament's Big, Bad Secretary-General. Boohoohoo, I feel your pain! But did he? Well, no. Perhaps even more painful for Gawain is that the secretary-general never devoted one single stroke of the pen to Gawain's deserving, pioneering and democracy-saving blog! Let alone that he threatened him with a fine. In actual fact, Gawain got a letter from HIS OWN POLITICAL GROUP, viz. the group's MEP responsible for staff matters. And as far as the call by the Parliament for at least a discussion on the use of internet blogs is concerned: I think Gawain has proved that this is perhaps not such a bad idea after all.

Anonymous said...

Ask Gawain about his plans for the tea urn in the house of commons....

Gawain Towler said...

I have no idea what you are talking about, none at all i tell you, nothing of the sort, there are no tea urns in the HoC...

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