the tories shouldn't be taking tips from alan partridge on human rights

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rights scepticism, namely the belief that human rights actors and institutions, foreign and domestic, are somehow bad for our interests is a curiously recent british obsession. lowering human rights standards is not something you will hear much in mainland europe, nor would you hear many americans talk about repealing their beloved bill of rights. steve coogan's character, alan partridge perhaps best summarised the normalisation of rights scepticism when he described british culture as "tutting when you see an ice-cream van selling hamburgers... a healthy suspicion of human rights... a punch and judy show having a giggle at a domestic incident...". the problem with rights scepticism is it started as a relatively harmless contrarian stance but is now an unhealthy nihilistic obsession.from magna carta to the english bill of rights through to the universal declaration of human rights and latterly, the human rights act, british political history is thread through with successive generat......

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