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The death of satire – an important appeal

August 26, 2013

The SKWAWKBOX

As 38 Degrees and other campaign groups have highlighted, the government’s “Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill” threatens (among many other bad things) to make it practically impossible to expose government lies and misdeeds in the run-up to an election, not to mention hamstringing the main form of organised representation left to ordinary people, by inflicting yet another evisceration on unions.

If the letter of the law is applied, even satire, as a tool of highlighting the absurdity of government attitude and policy, could be prosecutable if it can be considered as attempting to influence people’s voting intentions. This move by the government will effectively make dissent illegal – and has been condemned even by Conservative blogs such as The Spectator.

But while stifling dissent by members of the public, it would be incredibly naive to think that this bill will prevent the main…

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