Girls who have adulterous affairs with celebrities and who then sell their stories seem like prostitutes with delayed payment. However it has always happened and it will continue to happen, such are the fundamental characteristics of human nature, from male lust and scheming avaricious women to the prurient interest of the population.
But now, because of the way judges are making law with their interpretation of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, it is possible for these celebrities to live a lie. They can present the world with the remunerative image of a wholesome family man whilst bonking any floozy that takes their fancy. All it takes to maintain the lie is a super injunction from the High Court in London. Effectively a license to misbehave.
As I wrote yesterday, thankfully this tactic is coming unstuck. And one particular allegedly adulterous soccer player doesn’t like seeing the truth about himself on the internet so he is suing Twitter and “persons unknown” as well as a tabloid rag and the floozy that he bonked. Obviously he doesn’t believe in freedom of speech. If he had wanted his alleged immoral activities to be kept out of the public gaze he should have been faithful to his wife or bonked a better class of girl. As it is everyone knows who the alleged soccer player is, so all he is doing is making Schillings, his expensive lawyers, richer.
However all this legal activity raises extremely important questions. The first is who makes the law in England? Is it our democratically elected representatives in parliament or is it a handful of undemocratically appointed judges? At the moment the judges, with their “interpretation” are setting the agenda, which is outrageous and ridiculous. The government really needs to get a grip on this and sort out our freedoms. Senior judges currently trying to limit what parliamentarians are allowed to say are a danger to our democracy, this needs to be stopped.
The second question is that of freedom of speech on the internet. Basically the internet is global and can be accessed in every country of the world, yet every country has different privacy laws, from the First Amendment of the American constitution, which guarantees freedom of speech, to the highly repressive libel, anti terrorism and privacy laws we have in England. So how do you solve this conundrum? Twitter is an American company running to good American standards of freedom, the soccer player is British and is trying to enforce our repressive standards. Something has to give, and I don’t think that it will be the constitution of the United States of America.
The third question is that we effectively have two different laws in Britain, one for the rich and famous and another for ordinary people. People who have never met me and who have nothing better to do with their lives have written wicked and untrue things about me on the interwebs and, being poor, I can do nothing about it, even if I wanted to, which I don’t.
Both the “who rules Britain” question and the “freedom of speech on the internet” question are immensely important. The answer to both is for all the world to adopt American standards, for the First Amendment to be applied universally. This would make the world a vastly better place, except for the income of those expensive London lawyers.
Celebrities want to have it both ways, they want their activities to be widely publicised when it suits them and makes them money. Yet they want to keep their activities secret when they are amoral or repugnant, such as adulterously bonking a kiss and tell floozy. This is obviously wrong, public scrutiny, good and bad, is the price to be paid for fame and fortune. If they don’t like it then they should either not become a celebrity in the first place or they should learn to behave.
Finally we have Dominique Strauss-Kahn, whose alleged predatory sexual behaviour has been protected for years by strict French privacy laws. If you ever wanted an example of why we should have freedom of speech then this is it. He was probably unsuitable to be head of the IMF, yet his unsuitability was hidden from the world.