LA News Release, "First They Came for the Nazis: HSBC and Barclays Banks Should not Close BNP Bank Account" (October 2004)
NEWS RELEASE FROM THE LIBERTARIAN ALLIANCE
In Association with the Libertarian International
Release Date: Monday 25 October, 2004
Release Time: Immediate
Chris R. Tame, 07957 644 519, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sean Gabb, 07956 472 199, email@example.com
"FIRST THEY CAME FOR THE NAZIS: HSBC AND BARCLAYS BANKS SHOULD NOT CLOSE BNP BANK ACCOUNT", SAYS FREE MARKET AND CIVIL LIBERTIES THINK TANK
"The closure by both HSBC and Barclays Banks of the British National Party (BNP) bank account is an ominous threat to civil liberties", says the Libertarian Alliance, the radical free market and civil liberties think tank and pressure group.
Libertarian Alliance Director, Dr Chris Tame commented:
"Although in a fully free society and free market any commercial organization, private group or individual has a right to discriminate against, or refuse to do business with any other group or person for any reason, good or bad, rational or irrational, the existing banking system is not a free market. It is a regulated, semi-corporatist system in overt and covert relationships with the State. Inducements and pressures from the political elite are exerted and discretely veiled. Exclusion from the banking system is a direct attack on the very possibility of an organization functioning in modern society. Thus, to allow actually existing banks to reject a political organisation unpopular with the State is a threat to political diversity and to freedom itself."
"Although there is no group in Britain more opposed to EVERY aspect of the BNPs overt and covert agendas - its welfare statism, its socialist economics, its crackpot anti-monetarist currency views, its environmentalism, its social, political and sexual authoritarianism, its paternalism, its racial collectivism, its anti-free trade and anti- globalism, and its opposition to the free movement of goods, capital and labour - the Libertarian Alliance opposes both HSBC's and Barclay's decision, and the growing demands for the expulsion of BNP members from the civil service, the police, teaching or other professions."
"What can be done to the BNP can be done to any group. As the great Jewish libertarian philosopher Ayn Rand said: 'In the transition to statism, every infringement of human rights has begun with the suppression of a given right's least attractive practitioners. In this case, the disgusting nature of [those concerned] makes it a good test of one's loyalty to a principle'.
"The principle is political freedom and freedom of expression. First they came for the Nazis ... who will be next?".
The Libertarian Alliance has written formally to both HSBC and Barclays to urge them to reconsider their decision.
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