Cyclists are “longing” to be run down, says peer

Down with this sort of thing

by John Stevenson   November 22, 2013  

Lord James of Blackheath

A Conservative peer has said that cyclists are “longing” to be run down and that campaigns to protect cyclists are “creating a new and separate society” that will lead to “catastrophic accidents”.

Lord James of Blackheath was speaking in a House of Lords debate on a bill to tackle littering from cars. He said that the bill did not go far enough in dealing with anti-social behaviour on the roads and suggested it be extended to deal with cyclists taking photographs of traffic.

The 75-year-old said: “The Times is pursuing, to a ludicrous degree, the cause of cyclists to the point where they are creating a new and separate society in London, in which cyclists think they have a superior law and control over everybody in a motor car.

“This is going to lead to some catastrophic accidents very soon.”

The particular manifestation of this that concerns Lord James seems to be cyclists taking photographs of drivers.

He said: “On three mornings, driving up the A3 in the Balham and Clapham area, I have seen cyclists put their cycles up against the central reservation — not the line where the bus lane is — stand in the middle of the road with a camera and defy you to run them down while they photograph you doing it.

“That is what they are longing for.

“We need to have that sort of behaviour excluded because it is going to lead to their demise and our prosecution: it is ridiculous.”

Lord James, a City businessman, has something of a reputation for bringing unusual subjects to the attention of the House of Lords. In 2010 he claimed that a mysterious ultrarich organisation known as Foundation X was willing to back the UK's recovery with huge interest-free loans, and in 2012 he claimed to have uncovered a massive $15 trillion money-laundering fraud from the United States Federal Reserve.

Another scourge of our times is also close to Lord James’ heart: the behaviour of schoolchildren in buses.

He had persuaded his wife to accompany him to Twickenham to watch the rugby and she had been “horrified” to see “school buses coming down the road full of children indulging in a pastime which is, I believe, called mooning.”

“The sight of some 40 children mooning simultaneously is not a pretty one.”

While Lord James did not say how he would punish cyclists taking photos or children displaying their bare bottoms, he said that his wife, a youth justice officer, watched motorbike police  driving past the kids and said: “We have a law against this sort of thing. Why are they not being brought into court? I would put them away for a year if I got them.”

61 user comments

Latest 30 commentsNewest firstBest ratedAll

What a prize tw4t!

ralphred1965's picture

posted by ralphred1965 [12 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:24

like this
Like (13)

zanf wrote:
I think he should leave comment about cyclists to one side and dig deeper into the possible massive fraud being carried out by US Treasury to the tune of $15trillion that he was raising questions about previously.

This is flipping amazing. The guy's a total loon. He's also a terrible public speaker. I can't work out whether the mumbling and stumbling are related to his touching himself at various points, or if it is unrelated.

posted by step-hent [638 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:25

like this
Like (15)

When you see the house of lords live, the occupants look as if they have already been run down and no one has picked up the bodies!

antonio

antonio's picture

posted by antonio [899 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:28

like this
Like (23)

just goes to show what all that "society" in-breeding can do
doesn't it !! What acomplete and utter twat !

still on the 3rd switch-back of Bwlch !

posted by therevokid [585 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:43

like this
Like (16)

I was in tears again when I arrived at work this morning, having yet again FAILED to get myself run down.

Oh I do long to be run down, and either leave my family without a father/husband, or spend a long period of time in pain and potentially life-long disability. Lord James it is all I dream of.

When I was a kid and got my first bike, I wrote to Jim'll Fix It and asked to be run down. Luckily he didn't reply eh, as I might have been dealing with another type of trauma all together!

I do expose myself to maximum danger by sometimes taking pictures of drivers who are using their phones or jumping red lights, all from the extremely dangerous position of the pavement.

Bless him eh - daft old bugger!

posted by BikeBud [54 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:46

like this
Like (25)

Anyone know where you get these Foundation X interest-free loans from? Need one to buy a helmet cam...

posted by pwake [238 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:56

like this
Like (13)

joemmo wrote:
Neil753 wrote:
Take heart, my fellow cyclists.

These comments just add to the growing evidence that cyclists with cameras are having an effect on drivers which, though they might find the prospect of an awkward appearance on Youtube a little irksome, may well be the trigger for major improvements in driver behaviour.

And, although I'm sure that the noble lord's driving record is exemplary, he will now no doubt be keen to avoid doing a "Kate Hoey".

What evidence is that? Real or anecdotal? Besides I think you're over optimistic on that front, the next step in the arms race is that more drivers start installing cameras and we are inundated with youtube clips of crap and illegal cycling - which I guarantee will get a lot of media exposure. Nobody wins

I've seen several videos and reports of drivers modifying their behaviour once they "spot the camera". I suspect that a growing number of drivers are becoming aware of the recent successful prosecutions resulting from camera evidence. Certainly those drivers who have spotted themselves on Youtube will also no doubt be keen to drive more carefully in future.

As far as cameras used by drivers are concerned, many of us use them already. In my artic I have two.

"Hey..... Let's be visible out there."

Neil753's picture

posted by Neil753 [415 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 14:58

like this
Like (27)

Hmm. There really isn't a need for the Monty Python reunion, is there?

posted by MNgraveur [24 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 15:30

like this
Like (11)

I wonder if he is longing for a good slap...

posted by w jones [6 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 15:40

like this
Like (14)

This is why we have a House of Lords.

arrieredupeleton

posted by arrieredupeleton [519 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 15:40

like this
Like (6)

london - yawn.
there are bike riders outside of hipster central and most of us are decent folk.

posted by Simmo72 [210 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 16:09

like this
Like (8)

pwake wrote:
Anyone know where you get these Foundation X interest-free loans from? Need one to buy a helmet cam...

Didn't Foundation X have a massive re branding exercise and now calls itself Wonga ? Smile

Velotastic !

Too many hills, but too little time.

badback's picture

posted by badback [255 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 16:18

like this
Like (7)

There speaks a peer who's never had several inches of skin removed thanks to a car assisted slide along the tarmac, eh.

Longing to be run down? The man is a fool.

--
"Tant que je respire, j'attaque!"

John_the_Monkey's picture

posted by John_the_Monkey [413 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 16:19

like this
Like (8)

Simmo72 wrote:
london - yawn.
there are bike riders outside of hipster central and most of us are decent folk.

yawn, predictable ignorant comment.

posted by northstar [936 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 17:49

like this
Like (13)

Sounds like lord James is longing for some conflict on th road. Typical conservative scum, hasn't got a clue about real life

Feel the fear and do it anyway

hood's picture

posted by hood [99 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 20:58

like this
Like (13)

He so looks like Penrose. But like most, nay ALL, Tory peers he is a @~#%ing Arse!

He should be apologising for the 6 deaths in 2 weeks, for which his mob are responsible. Why are his ilk responsible? Well, way back in the 80's Thatcher decided Cars were the aspirational form of transport for the new middle class and public transport was a waste of money and faintly socialist.

So now most UK families have 2 or more cars, the roads are crammed full with traffic all eager to get from A to B as fast as possible, the streets are no more than car parks and are unsafe for Kids to play in and drivers have become ever more selfish with no desire to relinquish their freedom to drive.

I don't wish to make this too political as all governments often fail to predict the consequences of their decisions but the Tory governments of the 80's & 90's set us on the road to disaster (no pun intended). That's where we are right now. It will take something as radical as Thatchers idea of promoting the car to redress the imbalance but I'm not sure Lib, Lab or Con are that interested.

posted by BigBear63 [59 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 21:10

like this
Like (22)

Care in the community .... does not work! The evidence is clear! I think he needs locking up where he can ramble on to himself in peace

Endorphines going up and adrenaline going down, who needs drugs?

posted by banzicyclist2 [149 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 22:46

like this
Like (5)

Its a shame Fat Pat is no longer running the UCI - I'm sure he could have found the noble Lord a senior position! Devil

Pastaman

posted by pastaman [181 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 22:49

like this
Like (10)

Poor choice of adjective.

Longing to be run down, or dying to be?

History has shown that there is an inevitable progression in society to address inequalities that exist in how different groups are treated - gender, race, sexuality.

Given enough time, the steps that need to be taken to address the clear inequality that exists on the road to make cycling safe will be taken. This is inevitable.

"Flat earthers" like this chap and their comments and attitudes just make this process take longer.

We have 5 billion years until the sun swallows the earth so I am confident we will make cycling safe and accessible for all in the long run, but with people like this around it might be a closer run thing than I hoped.

posted by paulmcmillan [71 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 23:02

like this
Like (7)

75 years old.. He possibly hasn't got long working as a peer. Out spoken out of touch and inappropriate. "Cyclist have a superior law and control" wow what a tosser. Sorry but get real Lord twit get out your Jag in live with the tax payers supporting your lavish spoilt lifestyle.

"We have a law against this sort of thing. Why are they not being brought into court?"
And we have laws to sort out poor driving. Perhaps next time I go to a local major junction with traffic lights I'll take me camera and take an hours worth of red light jumpers.....say no more.

posted by Guyz2010 [278 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 23:21

like this
Like (7)

“This is going to lead to some catastrophic accidents very soon.”
Oh and it hasn't yet.
My thoughts are with the 13 cyclist virtually murdered in the last fortnight.

posted by Guyz2010 [278 posts]
22nd November 2013 - 23:24

like this
Like (9)

He's clearly spent too long in the company of taxi drivers as it seems that's where he gets his opinions...

posted by congokid [81 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 0:01

like this
Like (16)

There really needs to be some sort of legislative proficiency test that people need to pass before being allowed to run amok in the Lords. Being able to speak coherently, knowing what year it is and what planet you are on, distinguishing arse from elbow, that sort of thing.

posted by FluffyKittenofT... [501 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 1:05

like this
Like (12)

farrell wrote:
I am utterly, utterly stunned.

A tory peer who is disappointed at seeing young boys arses?

Well I never thought I'd see the day that happened....

It didn't say if they were boys or girls.

iDavid's picture

posted by iDavid [45 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 6:54

like this
Like (14)

Just to be clear that this debate/bill wasn't even needed in the first place:
https://twitter.com/roadpoliceBCH/status/404191477548724224

posted by Al__S [419 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 11:18

like this
Like (5)

Though doing more research, it was an amendment aiming to replace a criminal offence where it must be proven who it was littered to a civil one where the registered keeper can be prosecuted regardless.

posted by Al__S [419 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 11:25

like this
Like (11)

The most beautiful bit though is the total dismissal of Lord James' intervention. Read here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201314/ldhansrd/text/131120-0...

My Lords, one step at a time. I am going to let my noble friend’s suggested change to the amendment pass by for the time being. However, I have a great deal of sympathy for both these amendments.

Translated: Lord James is spouting insane nonsense, but we're going to be polite and not call him out on his lunacy. Moving on...

posted by Al__S [419 posts]
23rd November 2013 - 11:29

like this
Like (8)

[[[ "75 year old Lord James"---that's a misprint. He is in fact 7 years old, i.e. in his second childhood.
P.R.

PhilRuss

posted by PhilRuss [228 posts]
24th November 2013 - 4:36

like this
Like (5)

From the look of him, I would suggest that if he continues his own lifestyle it could be considered that he is 'longing' for a massive heart failure...

posted by stealth [149 posts]
24th November 2013 - 10:11

like this
Like (4)

I wouldn't bother getting too irate about this old buffoon. I heard him on the radio the other day and he was practically a parody - i don't think even he was taking himself seriously!

ragtimecyclist's picture

posted by ragtimecyclist [115 posts]
25th November 2013 - 14:28

like this
Like (0)