Monthly Archives: June 2012

RIP David Webb


by Sean Gabb

Note: I am, of course, not referring to our own David Webb in this annoucement. The last time I noticed, he was alive and well. SIG

It is with the deepest regret that I must announce the death at 3pm today (30th June 2012) of David Webb, well-known and much-loved actor on stage, screen and television, and Director of the National Campaign for the Reform of the Obscene Publications Acts (NCROPA).

It is partly thanks to David’s tireless, and often thankless, campaigning over the years that we enjoy our present semi-relaxation of the laws against sexual expression. I helped publicise his campaign against the Customs and Excise in the 1990s, when he challenged their use of the Customs Consolidation Act 1876 to seize a mass of pornographic videos that he had imported from Holland and declared on arrival here as “for personal use!” Though his challenge failed on a technicality in the Court of Appeal, the 1876 Act is nowadays used far less aggressively than in the 1980s and 1990s. I also fondly remember joining him on the platform at the NCROPA fringe meeting at the 1992 Conservative Party conference in Brighton. Otherwise, David was a frequent speaker throughout the United Kingdom on issues of sexual liberation, and he stood for Parliament on more than one occasion.

David was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer earlier this year. Though his doctors believed he had another year of life, his health began to fail a few weeks ago, and he died today peacefully and in his sleep at Trinity Hospice in Clapham.

He was 82. He was unmarried and without children.

I will make a further announcement when I know details of the funeral. His obituary will be written by Edward Goodman, his friend and associate of many years.

All who were privileged to know him will agree that David was a good and generous friend, with a fine sense of humour and an endless fund of anecdotes about his main career as an actor.

We will remember him.

Libertarian Novels by Nicholas Dykes


by Nicholas Dykes

Hi Sean,

I hope all is well with you and yours.

This is just to let you know that I have recently published two new (non-philosophical) novels on Amazon’s Kindle: a mystery/adventure story called Black Cliff, about three very different people caught up in the consequences of the importation into Britain of alien customs such as arranged marriage and honour killing; and Hopeless: Death of a Fawn, a psychological detective story in which a disabled, poetry-loving police inspector and his highly educated lady partner strive to prevent the murder of a young girl.

My earlier book, Old Nick’s Guide to Happiness: A Philosophical Novel is also now on Kindle. Since the intellectual aspects of the book fall naturally into two halves, theoretical and practical, I republished it in two volumes, Book One: Why, and Book Two: How.

If you don’t have a Kindle, I believe it is possible to download the books for reading on Ipads, PCs, etc.

I would be deeply grateful if you could pass this information along to your wide Libertarian acquaintanceship, though I should perhaps point out that O’ism/Libertarianism underlie the new stories rather than being spelled out as in ONGTH.

Many thanks, all the best, Nick

Elizabeth the Useless Shakes Hands with Blood Beast Fenian Scum!


I don’t think that was in her Coronation Oath either.

Total Recall on Telly


In my view, the best film of the 1980s – a philosophical and technical masterpiece.

Western-Backed “Freedom Fighters” Bring Democracy and Human Rights to Syria


Legal firm bottom feeders and the NHS


by D.J. Webb

Dear all, no time for a long post, but I was amazed, at a time of cuts, to read that clinical negligence payments by the NHS rose by £10bn over the past five years to total £16.6bn! [See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/9353443/Comment-The-spiralling-cost-of-no-win-no-fee-lawyers.html%5D This is not a small amount of money. Continue reading

My education manifesto


by D.J. Webb

1. Privatise the whole education system
2. All teachers’ salaries set by the schools
3. A voucher system instituted allowing parents choice, but the vouchers set at a level that does not cover the full cost of education (e.g. requiring a top-up co-payment averaging 10% of the cost of attending an unglamorous school from the parents, and much larger top-ups to attend better schools). Unmarried mothers with five children would still have to find a certain sum for their children’s education. Continue reading