EDITOR MATTHEW D'ANCONA congratulates a contributor to The Spectator (UK):
Greetings to all CoffeeHousers from the 29th Floor of Millbank Tower, where the faithful have gathered to toast our new Mayor - who, poor fellow, is stuck at the count waiting for official public confirmation of the triumph that Downing Street conceded hours ago, the bookies have already accepted, and the Evening Standard has announced in a special late edition.Here's a link to Boris Johnson's entry on Wikipedia that contains this quotation:
It is a pleasure and a privilege to congratulate Boris on his victory - as his successor at the Spectator, his friend and (above all) a Londoner. Be in no doubt: this is a sensational achievement. Ken Livingstone has dominated London politics for a quarter century and presided over a coalition of formidable strength. In 2000, he ran rings around the New Labour machine at its mightiest. To dislodge him is a historic act of giant-killing and a remarkable moment in the capital's political history.
Labour will insist that this is a London story with no national consequence. The opposite, of course, is the case: for the first time since the general election of 1992, the Tory Party has won a major contest. The victorious candidate has captured the imagination of the whole country. His election dramatises and personifies the Conservative revival more vividly than any policy announcement or mini-manifesto could ever do. Tomorrow morning the whole country will be talking about the Boris Effect and wondering what comes next.
So: well done, my friend. You deserved this victory for which you fought and fought and fought against a veteran opponent. The torch has indeed been passed. All the best from your friends at the Spec: enjoy tonight, and then - to work!
Islam and MuslimsAnother tidbit from Wikipedia:
Johnson made the following comments about Islam in his Spectator column shortly after the July 7 bombings in 2005:
"It is time to reassert British values…That means disposing of the first taboo, and accepting that the problem is Islam. Islam is the problem. To any non-Muslim reader of the Koran, Islamophobia — fear of Islam — seems a natural reaction, and, indeed, exactly what that text is intended to provoke. Judged purely on its scripture — to say nothing of what is preached in the mosques — it is the most viciously sectarian of all religions. The trouble with this disgusting arrogance and condescension is that it is widely supported in Koranic texts, and we look in vain for the enlightened Islamic teachers and preachers who will begin the process of reform. What is going on in these mosques and madrasas? "When is someone going to get 18th century on Islam’s mediaeval ass?"
On his father's side Johnson is great-grandson of Ali Kemal Bey, a liberal Turkish journalist and interior minister in the government of Damat Ferid Pasha, Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire who was murdered during the Turkish War of Independence. During World War I Boris's grandfather and great aunt were recognised as British subjects and took their grandmother's maiden name of Johnson.BBC profile here.Curiously, Johnson's socialite first wife, Allegra Mostyn-Owen, appears to teach at a madrassah:
292-296 Romford Road, Forest Gate, E7
Newham Mosque Workshops
From July 2005, artist Allegra Mostyn-Owen has been running after school art workshops in Minhaj-ul-Quran Mosque in Forest Gate. Allegra’s inspiring work with 5-14 year old boys and girls has earned her a special achievement award from the current Imam, Sadiq Qureshi and a great deal of local support.
Offscreen are now trying to support Allegra through their resources and artists in schools programme.
Contact teacher: Allegra Mostyn-Owen, freelance artist/educator