Friday, 25 March 2011

On pause

I get so little reaction to what I write here that it really doesn't seem worth the bother, especially as I do put in  reasonable amount of effort to check out sources and facts and to provide working links (something not even the long-established bloggers always get right!) so I have decided not to post on more than an occasional, exceptional basis.

I'll see how that goes before deciding whether to continue.

Monday, 21 March 2011

Protests in Britain

The political Left in Britain love "causes" that they support (often invent themselves, in fact) and gain themselves some publicity for being the good guys and supporting "the ordinary people of Britain".

The latest in a long line of these is the UK Uncut outfit, whose clearly-stated goal is to occupy other people's property (just follow that link and check the left side) and harm them in other ways, targeting those businesses they claim (usually erroneously) are not paying huge amounts of tax due in this country.

Frankly, they are criminals, trying to hide behind the tolerant nature of our laws toward non-violent protest.

Of course, it's all really driven by the Communist puppetmasters who themselves stay conveniently hidden away so are never caught or identified; although the British Communist Party itself is usually to be found on marches and at rallies (I have photos showing this).

This piece from a new (to me) name at The Spectator, successfully debunks UK Uncut, and is worth reading through in order to gain a clearer overall picture of what these outfits are really like.

The "anti-cuts" march in London this coming weekend is a classic example of the artificiality of all this and Labour hypocrisy. Labour people are tweeting that they'll be there, spouting the Labour party line about cuts "too soon, too deep". Yet it is on the public record that Labour's Shadow Chancellor (this month's one) Ed Balls has claimed recently that he was fully supportive of the Darling deficit reduction plan which is almost identical to what the Coalition Government is implementing, both in terms of timing (identical) and amount (similar: £14 billion rather than the Coalition's £16 billion).

Therefore their whole stance is a lie, and an obvious one. Of course, those who go on these events aren't usually all that bright, on the whole, as they are obviously being fooled whenever a stunt of this nature is being pulled. The majority of such events fall into that category, and anyone capable of thinking straight would realise that and keep away.

Apart, that is, from those who are actually using it as an excuse to "get one over" on those they hate for whatever reason. Usually it is unreasoning hatred; but the Lefties are like that: full of hatred, spite and downright nastiness. They've always been the same, at least throughout my lifetime of around half a century.

Thus it is safe to ignore whatever protests these bods dream up and attend; but it will be useful to have all of them identified so that all genuinely decent people can shun them in future, which is what they all deserve!

Cameron and Libya

Here's a good analysis, by the very sound Fraser Nelson in The Spectator, of just what David Cameron has achieved with regard to the Libya situation.

It also debunks the myth that France's president Sarkozy was the primary driver: he was using ( and manipulating) this for his own political ends. The second and third paragraphs in the linked article show this quite clearly.

It has been a remarkably statesmanlike job that Cameron has done, impressive for one so new to actual government. He still has his critics (some of them in the comments to that article) and the media management of this government could certainly do with some improvements, but overall this is the kind of Prime Minister who engenders confidence, not only that of the country's own people but in the international scenario as well.

He is almost infinitely better than Gordon Brown, for a start!

Friday, 18 March 2011

Libya No-Fly Zone approved by UN

That's the overnight news; and although some sources are trying to suggest it was the French who secured this (they did play an important part) or that US president Obama was behind it (he seems to have done nothing but dither) it was the persistent leadership of our own David Cameron, along with Foreign Secretary William Hague, that made this UN Resolution 1973 happen at all. cameron first raised the prospect of a No-Fly Zone (NFZ) in the House of Commons over two weeks ago, on 28 February.

The Prime Minister was making an emergency statement to the House of Commons as I started to write this, and Jonathon Isaby has now posted a summary of that.

Now, there are arguments for why the NFZ is a good thing, and other arguments why it is bad. It is unlikely to resolve the issues afflicting Libya (there are plenty of other potentially brutal dictators waiting to take over from Gaddaffi), but the simple humanitarian needs of a civilian population under threat to their lives from their own government is compelling for many.

At least having a UN resolution behind this preventative action is hugely different from the all-out attack on Iraq some eight years ago, and the waiting for that resolution this time was the right approach, even though further lives have been lost as a result of the delay. We couldn't have managed it alone anyway.

That additional loss of life, though, was because of others' dilly-dallying, not our own leadership here in Britain. Cameron and Hague had exactly the right approach and come out of this better than any other country's leadership anywhere in the world, bar none.

The same cannot be said of the Labour opposition, though, as Guido notes in a tweet, and provides some detail here.

P.S: by a curious twist of fate, this resolution has come into being just in time for Comic Relief's Red Nose Day this year!

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Hello, Chuck!

I have recently started watching a TV series called Stargate: SG-1, and was today surprised to encounter a character called Chaka the Unas:


That name is so similar to nearby (to me) MP Chuku Umunna


that I thought I'd study the characters of both. My conclusion after doing so is that, although Chaka is less appealing visually, his standards of honour and trustworthiness seem to be much the higher!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Tweet of the day - 9 March 2011

From Guido, after today's Prime Minister's Questions (PMQs):

Labour line on Dave [Cameron] has fully swung from "posh smoothie hiding dangerous radical right-wing neo-Thatcherite plan" to "he's incompetent".

Ed Miliband's "he's incompetent" line was very obviously pre-scripted and frankly didn't work: it was mis-timed and the context wasn't suited for such an attack. Cameron had been very competent at dealing with everything that Red Ed had thrown at him, and the general view of the commentariat seems to have been that, despite a less than top performance today, Cameron had completely flattened Ed-M.

He even turned around a suggestion of 'knifing' his Foreign Secretary: Cameron responded that the only who had done that was Miliband (against his brother David, who had been Foreign Sec' in the Brown government).

Monday, 7 March 2011

Tweet of the day - 7 March 2011

From Iain Dale, on the revelation that the MPs' expenses watchdog IPSA (set up under the last Labour government) spent a small fortune from public funds on its office furnishings:

"IPSA spent £4,300 on each of their employees' desk space. Biteback spent less than £500. There's a lesson there."

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Tweet of the day - 5 March 2011

From Greg Hands, Conservative MP for Chelsea & Fulham:

"In 5 years of Conservative Council control, the number of neighbourhood watches in H[ammersmith] and F[ulham] is up from 6 to more than 150."

Friday, 4 March 2011

Seat equalisation

The two-year exercise to redraw Britain's parliamentary constituencies to reduce their number by fifty and to equalise their electorate sizes begins today.

A good sign (though not worded that way in the media) is that it really does promise to reduce if not eliminate the considerable pro-Labour bias under the present boundaries. That has always been unfair to voters throughout the nation, and frankly disgusting - there was never any genuine excuse for it and it should have been tackled a long time ago.

Now of course there will be a Labour outcry, supported by their pals in the various media. Typical Socialism of course: everything is "unfair" unless it is tilted heavily in their own favour. This work, though, will be to the advantage of the voting public rather than any political party. The playing field will end up more or less level, and no-one honest is going to bleat about that!

Update: Conservative Home has written in similar terms to the above, with  a regional breakdown of the number of seats to be removed.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Tweet of the day - 3 March 2011

From the BBC's Andrew Neil, possibly the lone voice of sanity in an otherwise Lefty-corrupted organisation:

"UK tax code now longest in the world. More than doubled under Gordon Brown not just in size -- from 4,998 to 11,520 pages -- but complexity"

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Yes2AV campaign misusing email addresses

Not exactly surprising to discover that the pro-AV voting method campaign have, despite warnings in recent times, continued to misappropriate people's email addresses in furtherance of their goal.

It is a valuable clue to the base nature of that campaign, and reminds us that there are some out there who stand to benefit personally &/or ideologically from such a change in our country's parliamentary voting system. The innately corrupt always put their own interests above the law when they think they can get away with it long enough to tip things their way - it's hardly a new story in that broader context.

Whether that automatically means one shouldn't vote "yes" in the referendum because the change is supported by a warped and untrustworthy campaign is debatable; but it is certainly a reason to be cautious regarding (in particular) the pro-AV campaign, as has been their well-hidden (but recently exposed) sponsorship by at least one outfit that stands to gain considerable benefit from a "yes" result.

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Cameron Q&A on Al-Jazeera

An interesting 25-minute interview with pre-recorded questions from the public, on Al-Jazeera. I'd quibble about the "climate change" issue, but otherwise I am reasonably happy with this from our Prime Minister:

What is Red saying?

Raedwald has been struggling to understand what Ed Miliband has been saying recently; and I have to admit I tend to agree with the conclusion that what Red really wants is democracy elsewhere, but his own dictatorship here in Britain.

It's not a surprise, but it is a useful reminder that Ed-M isn't going to support democratic improvements in his own country as it would take an unfair unadvantage away from Labour, among other things the skewed constituency boundaries and the suspected millions of fraudulent votes that appear for (mainly) Labour at general elections. It's not just in Tower Hamlets that the latter are believed to occur!

Raedwald also covers Red Ed's hypocrisy regarding ethics and principles. As it happens, Peter Mandelson on Andrew Marr's show this morning has said he is fully supportive of Ed Miliband in whichever direction he goes. Now, isn't that interesting to note as well?

Saturday, 26 February 2011

As daffy as Gaddafi

The really ghastly ultra-loud Lefty Mehdi Hasan has tonight tweeted this:

"Disappointed to see Hugo Chavez, a man I've often defended from lazy right-wing smears, coming out and defending Gaddafi. Pretty poor."

Well, who have thought that he'd have been a defender of Chavez. Perhaps he should team up with Ken Livingstone who also has an apparent fondness for the Venezuelan ruler.

The above confession certainly reminds us that the left are very much in favour of dictators (and are often seen in their company), since they aspire to become the same themselves. Indeed, they were near-enough all Gaddafi fans until a couple of days ago.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 25 Feb 2011

From Jackart (Very British Dude), about the real world:

Politics102: Righty. "This is how the world works". Lefty "No it isn't. I want it to work this way". World works just as righty says.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Yes2AV funding

This was real news to me, though in retrospect not all that great a surprise. I've seen enough going on in this business in my time, after all.

The Electoral Reform Society has pumped over a million pounds in cash, and a dozen staff and other "in kind" aid, to the Yes2AV campaign that is trying to persuade voters to go for the (ghastly) Alternative Vote electoral system.

That Society, though, has a very significant commercial interest in the outome of that referendum, as the largest provider by far of electoral materials. They'd do very well out of a change to a far more complex system and would make a lot of extra dosh out of AV than they do under the current system.

Unlike the "No" campaign, which has published its funding details openly throughout, the "Yes" outfit has been very secretive. Now we know why!

Now, one might perhaps try to find an extenuating circumstance or other get-out for both the Society and the Yes2AV campaign itself; but the latter has just pulled out of a debate due to be held in Leeds this evening, just after these revelations broke earlier today. They know they'd have been questioned about this and they know they have no satisfactory answer. It is the only possible conclusion one can draw.

With the "Yes" campaign seemingly farctionally ahead of the "Noes" in some recent polls (not all, admittedly) they must have thought they were well on the way to victory. This business must have a certain degree of impact on that now, though it is a side issue. It's that element of apparent impropriety that, at least in this country, can turn a result away from where it had appeared to be heading.

Let's hope it does; because the AV system is complicated, expensive, and allows fringe voters to have a more valuable ballot than a mainstream party supporter's ballot, as only the former will (after their first preference votes have already been taking into account) have the other preferences also counted in most seats.

It isn't a fair system, it isn't transparent, and it certainly isn't anywhere near "proportional". We don't need it here! Indeed, of the few countries that operate such a system, I understand that two of them are currently under significant internal pressure to abandon AV. It's dying out elsewhere, so why do we want such a ropey system here? I'm voting NO!

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Cameron in Kuwait

James Forsyth at The Spectator has picked up really well on David Cameron's speech in Kuwait today. It's a compact piece, but tells a strong story.

Forsyth is generally very good at this sort of thing, understanding not merely the words or the basic principles and intentions behind them, but the significance as well.

He has done so again today, in sussing out the truly liberal (in the literal sense) nature of Cameron's speech, and in particular in the PM's "hit[ting] all the right notes". His suggestions in his final paragraph are provocative but serious and important. Our leaders should at least be looking at them, and indeed they probably are.

Monday, 21 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 21 Feb 2011

From Jackart (Very British Dude) on the weary topic of the political left:

Left "hates" tories like a child "hates" authority. Tories look benignly upon lefties as childish idiots after whom we sometimes clean up.

Oh, Mister Porter!

Our old friend Aaron Porter has decided he will not stand for re-election as the National Union of Students' (NUS) president this April.

Oh, how sad!

Mind you, I suspect this is in reality a preliminary move toward becoming a Labour party candidate in some approaching election, either council or (more likely) parliamentary. Therefore don't be surprised if he is parachuted in to a safe Labour seat, perhaps even at the next by-election triggered by yet another expenses scandal-related resignation of a sitting Labour MP.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Common Cameron

Here's a funny website, trying to take the mickey out of David Cameron but in reality looking rather silly. Talk about desperation! As for playing the man rather than playing the ball...

Still, the images are quite enjoyable, for all that!

Friday, 18 February 2011

Trivia of the day - 18 Feb 2011

From this Tweet by Paul Waugh, we can learn several things:

"Top trivia re new No.10 man Paul Kirby: was among 31K Liverpool council staff sent redundo notices via taxi by DHatton in 80s"

  1. Paul Kirby has been around a while
  2. Liverpool Council employed more than 31,000 people, at public expense, in the '80s
  3. Those redundancy notices were ferried by (expensive) taxis rather than by either ordinary post or the internal mail at the council offices
  4. Those mass redundancies were an earlier example of political manipulation of a situation by the Lefties of the time, just as Lewisham Council is doing now (see my preceding post).

This is useful for us now, as it shows the validity of what I wrote earlier today, and I and others have been saying for a long time. Some of us were around when these earlier anti-Conservative government actions were taken, as a way to create resentment against the Thatcher government of the time by making people suffer (by losing their jobs) largely unnecessarily, and by spending money that could have kept some jobs going on taxi fares instead.

Derek Hatton was as Red as they come, though, and cared nothing for the workforce, only for his own political agenda for which those workers were merely pawns in the game.

As so often happens, a little history serves as a good reminder of what has happened before, that we are seeing again now.

The unkindest cuts

These are the (as expected) deliberately politically-motivated cuts to front-line services by local Labour councils here in south London. Two stories in the South London Press today caught my attention, as they concern the two councils upon whose adjoining boundary my home almost sits.

First, let's look across the road (or so) from me, at Lewisham. Here, the Labour-run Borough Council has just approved cuts of some £33 million, which have been deliberately targeted at (as the headline says) libraries, nurseries, elderly care and a youth club. Why? When other councils faced with similar public spending reductions can achieve results that do not impact the front line, why is Lewisham apparently unable to do the same?

Of course, the clue is in the word Labour. Everything for them is party politically motivated and has nothing to do with serving the public interest. Labour never do, though they sometimes make it look as if they are, at least to the less perceptive.

As a counterpoint to this story, let's move back across the boundary into Lambeth, where I live. Here we find a scandal that Lambeth Borough Council has run up a £35 million bill through leaving council housing empty while thousands of people remained on its housing waiting list. Note that this single-issue amount is greater than the savings the (at least as wasteful, inefficient and incompetent) Lewisham authority has agreed to make. Again, it's a Labour-run council, and does not serve the public interest as its real priority.

While it is possible that there are one or two decent Labour-run councils in our country, I for one wouldn't put any money on that turning out to be the case. As far as I can determine, they are all rotten to the core; and these two reports show only a part of the story in just two such councils at this one moment in time. The totality is no doubt hundreds if not thousands of times worse overall!

Remember this: Labour is garbage, always has been and always will be. With that in mind, one cannot go far wrong!

Tweet of the day - 18 Feb 2011

From Guido, on the ever-deceptive Ed Balls:

"I see @ is now telling the governor of the Bank of England he is wrong too. So that's the IMF, OECD and BoE wrong, Balls right."

No surprise or change there. Remember that Balls was always part of Gordon Brown's nasty gang of inner-circle bruisers/liars/smearers that included Damian McBride.

Alternative Vote

The Alternative Vote (AV) system is going to be offered in a referendum, possibly on the same day in early May that various elections are being held, now that the Bill has passed from the House of Lords back to the Commons for the last time.

It's a really odd voting (and vote-counting) method, involving multiple "preferences" rather than a single vote for each seat being contested. Some electors will have their "second choices" also counted in the process, while others will have theirs ignored. Third choices and beyond could also come into play, until a point is reached where the added together figures give the impression that one candidate (per seat) has received more than half the votes.

Of course, it's all an illusion, but it looks as though the voter is "more in control" by having more than a single choice.

There's a very good piece on the subject in the Wall Street Journal (Europe) by that publication's 'editorial page editor' (whatever that means) Brian M Carney, and I think is one of the best ways to get under the skin of the matter and gain a better grasp of why it is being pushed by some, but has little genuine benefit (in fact, probably the direct opposite) to the electorate. It is no surprise that hardly anywhere on Earth is this system operated!

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 16 Feb 2011

From JackArt (A Very British Dude), observing the benches of MPs at today's Prime Minister's Questions session:

"Chicks on Tory benches are MUCH better looking than the horrid swamp pigs opposite them..."

This is something that has been noted over a number of years. The "Blair Babes" phenomenon never really lived up to the hype, and Labour female MPs tend, on the whole, to be ghastly in looks, posture, manner and verbally too.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Labour councils cut jobs

In view of the hot air currently being expended by Union bosses, Labour spokesmen and others on the political left about "the cuts" (which haven't happened yet, but are being blamed for all and sundry occurring now) it is worth reminding ourselves that all of this posturing is complemented by politically-motivated manoeuvring.

For Labour and teh Unions, people's jobs and interests are of little actual value: they always treat people (including Union members) as expendable pawns in their political games. There is plenty of precedent to demonstrate this beyond any element of doubt, though the information isn't easy to come by as it inevitably contains personal and case details that would identify the individuals affected. The parties involved are of course well aware of this, and hide behind it.

Today's lesson is that, in similar vein, Labour-run councils are scrapping jobs at a much higher rate than other councils, rather than dealing with the issues of inherent waste and duplication. As the headline at the linked page indicates, Labour-run councils are "eager" to cut front-line services first.

Of course, quite apart from causing as much dismay to their affected population as they can, giving them political leverage, this also protects their subversive placemen in many back-office posts, such as Common Purpose types and others whose primary actual function is to destroy our society from within such organisations as local councils.

Thus we see the ultimate corruption pervading the political left, and we must not be fooled by it. Fortunately, we do of course have the non-Labour run councils to use as a yardstick; and their approach tends to be far straighter. Where I am, virtually on the border separating two Labour-run London Borough councils, I can expect service reductions in the most sensitive areas (for greatest political effect) in my home area.

At least I shall know what the real cause and motivation is, and shall be seeking ways to publicise this, using other councils' approaches for comparison, and perhaps even looking at the possibility of legal action against those responsible for targeting front-line services. Those two councils can take it that they have now been warned!

Tweet of the day - 15 Feb 2011

From Kevin Schofield, on the new rat-catcher feline at Number Ten:

"Larry the new Downing Street cat to be unveiled today. Is this David Cameron's Claws 4 moment?"

Monday, 14 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 14 Feb 2011

No, not a Valentine's message, but this from HeadsOnPoles:

"The only reason 'little Ted' Milliband doesn't like the big society is because he can't say it"

Sally forth

That's Speaker's wife, the Labourite Sally Bercow, who is now being managed by an "artist management" outfit called ASM Damage Ltd. There must be a reason for their name, and for Mrs B to be associated with them.

Well, I can understand the 'damage' part of Sally's activities; but I think there's a slightly uncouth name for the type of 'artist' the lady is widely considered to be...

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 13 Feb 2011

The date might be "unlucky for some", but Tweetminster are today reporting what many might consider to be good news:

"When we launched Tweetminster two years ago there were four MPs using Twitter. There are now 240 MPs on Twitter."

Of course, other folk might wonder how MPs have so much spare time to spend on Twitter, and when tweeting from meetings shouldn't their attention be entirely on the proceedings? I feel there is an interesting topic for on-line debate there!

Saturday, 12 February 2011

B is for Bully

It's long been known that Labour's national leadership and its advisers have comprised largely quite nasty bullies, such Brown (Gordon), Balls (Ed) and McBride (Damian) - the three B's, even if one is a 'McB'! We also know (and some of us have known for some time) that the then Labour national government were well aware that their spend-and-borrow policies were heading toward ruin.

It therefore comes as little surprise to discover that Balls at least was involved in bullying the IMF into playing down their reporting of Britain's economic situation. This goes way back to 2004, long before "it started in America" to quote Gordon Brown's frequently-stated disclaimer.

Okay, so we also know that Labour, in common with the political left throughout recorded modern history, are always dishonest because their modus operandi requires it: they cannot function with openness and honesty, and of them, ever. Therefore this is not an amazing new revelation: it's just useful to have documented in such a way as to remove any lingering doubts. It is entirely consistent with my own personal experience of Labour at various levels as well.

Red E and waiting

Last year, Ed Miliband pulled out of a planned attendance at a Union-based event because of the adverse publicity it would no doubt generate. I think many of us now realise that his ambitions were already in place back then, despite his protestations that he hadn't even thought about standing for the Labour party leadership (a claim that was recently revealed to be, shall we say, misleading) so, with the likelihood of Gordon Brown leaving that position ere long, he changed his mind at that time.

Now, though, he is the leader, and very much indebted to the big Unions for putting him there, so this year he is going to be at the same event, an anti-cuts rally next month, reports The Mail. The proof of the pudding will be to see if he does go, and (if so) in what he does there; but we now have the "heads up" on this, so can watch to see what transpires.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 11 Feb 2011

"On this day..."

Originally from one Paul Hilder on the day that President Mubarak of Egypt stood down, thoughtfully added to in a re-tweet (RT) by Harry 'Tory Bear' Cole: (his bit in bold):

"RT @: 11/2/11: Mubarak resigns. 11/2/90: Mandela freed. 11/2/79: Iranian revolution toppled Shah. < 11/2/67 @ born."

ID Card datanase destroyed - literally!

Let Home Office minister Damian Green explain:

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 9 Feb 2011

From The Honourable Lady:

"I was once told by a Labour activist that a union was more important than a family and could raise a child better. That is some scary s***."

Remember that old line? "All of your children are belong to us."

Son of Brown

For anyone who might not have realised just how close Labour party leader Ed Miliband has been throughout his political career, here is a year-by-year listing of Red Ed's jobs, courtesy of commenter 13eastie at Guido's blog:

  • 1994 Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown
  • 1995 Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown
  • 1996 Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown
  • 1997 Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown
  • 1998 Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown
  • 1999 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2000 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2001 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2002 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2003 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2004 Chief Economic Advisor to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2005 Smith Institute Wonk
  • 2006 Economic Secretary to Gordon Brown’s Treasury
  • 2007 Member of Gordon Brown’s Cabinet
  • 2008 Member of Gordon Brown’s Cabinet
  • 2009 Member of Gordon Brown’s Cabinet
  • 2010 Member of Gordon Brown’s Cabinet
  • 2011 Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
There seems to be an ever-so-slight connection between those two...

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Weird tweet of the day - 8 Feb 2011

From Labour MP Paul Flynn:

"I was convinced that the fairy tale than Hain or Eluned Morgan show head the Assembly was a media invention. Wikileaks proves otherwise." 

I've tried, but I can't work out what it means!

Tweet of the day - 8 Feb 2011

From the Tory Press Office, on what the new (but "with a past"!) Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls claimed earlier today on Sky:

"Ed Balls today on Sky "I never believed in light touch". EB in 2006 ‘Nothing should be done to put at risk a light-touch regulatory regime’"

Well, who'd have thought it: Ed Balls is being less than straight with us!

Osborne vs Balls

The first clash between the Chancellor, George Osborne, and the new Shadow Chancellor, took place earlier this afternoon. Here, courtesy of ITN, is that four-minute event (the whole Treasury Questions session lasted over 90 minutes):



Here's Fraser Nelson's take on what happened.

Knight Rider in the Lords

Several observers, including EyeSpyMP (who can't seem to spell his surname correctly), have spotted David "the Hoff" Hasselhoff in the House of Lords today, though none (as yet) has given any reason for his presence.

From Baywatch to Baron-watch, perhaps!

Bank Levy

I am pleased that the Coalition Government's new bank taxation system, announced today, will generate an ongoing income, rather than the one-off £2.3 billion that Labour had apparently planned to impose.

Not only does that provide a regular additional income for the Treasury, of at least £2.5 billion every year (and probably more), it is also something for which any business can easily plan, as with any other tax, duty or whatever paid on a regular basis.

Mind you, in an attempt to sound more plausible, Labour have today been claiming that some of them wanted their levy to be for two consecutive years, but were in effect vetoed by Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling who both said "it wouldn't work". Yeah, right!

Monday, 7 February 2011

Tweet of the day - 7 Feb 2011

From Guido, after today's release of the Lockerbie bomber release case documents:

"GUS Lockerbie report: barefaced lying by Brown, Mandelson, Ed Balls and particularly David Miliband - time and time again."

This view has come across strongly from other directions as well. Such phrases as the then Labour government "doing all it could" to facilitate the bomber's release are already floating around, despite it being the devolved Scottish assembly/parliament's job to carry the actual can of releasing the prisoner (another convenience of devolution).

On the other side of the coin: the best the BBC have been able to do, in their attempt to avoid bringing their faves Labour's name into a negative connotation, is to refer only to "the former government". It's just like when they refer to "Asians" in terrorist matters and the like, instead of "Muslims". Dishonest? Misleading? Diversionary? Yes, of course: it's the corrupt BBC!

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Labour support Gove proposals

Okay, not all of Labour; but a few weeks ago the former Schools Minister in Gordon Brown's government is on record as agreeing with what Michael Gove is implementing now, including the so-called "free schools" idea.

Today, that has in effect been backed up by Tony Blair's former senior education adviser, Conor Ryan, who goes further and declares Andy Burnham's current objections as "ridiculous". As usual, current (shadow) ministers are just attempting to rubbish anything that the coalition government is doing, because that is their narrow, partisan way.

It just goes to show that those Labour folkare interested only in their own agenda, and not the country's, so have no value whatsoever to the nation. Some of us have known this for years, if not decades; but it never does any harm to have proof positive!

Tweet of the day - 6 Feb 2011

From JosephAGallant, in response to others' tweets:

"We Once had Ronald Reagan, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash: Now, We Have Obama, No Hope and No Cash !!!"

Friday, 4 February 2011

McBride saves us from more Gordon!

One of the most interesting disclosures to have come from the Wikileaks documents is the highly probably abandonment of what seems to have been a plan by Gordon Brown to call a snap election in May 2009. This, was designed to capitalise on Labour's rise in the opinion polls after Gordon's well-received work at the G20 summit.

As was so often the case before the new fixed-term parliaments were introduced by the current coalition government, when the Prime Minister of the day could pick and choose the date of the next general election, it would be designed for maximum political advantage to the PM's own party. This is why it was such a bad system, consequently being rarely (and only coincidentally) to do with what was best for the country.

Anyway, Brown's plan was scuppered when the Damian McBride (one of the then PM's closest aides) smear campaign came to light, largely through the efforts of Guido. That reversed Labour's fortunes, and Gordon obviously couldn't go to the country at that time after all, as he would have been likely to lose! Can't have that now, can we?

If it had gone ahead, we'd quite likely have been subjected to another five years of Labour in government. As it was, we got away with just one year - and look at the damage Brown & Co did even in that relatively short time! Therefore, in a strange twist of fate, we can actually be grateful to McBride for being the agent of Labour's downfall in May 2010. The discovery of his actions stopped the 2009 election from happening at all, and the smell he left behind must have had a negative effect on Labour's polling the following year.

It has been a double-whammy for Brown and Labour, and we can be thankful for that!

Red Ed needs help

The picture at the right says it all!

'Red Ed' Miliband is conducting one of his Fresh Ideas Cameron-style events, being broadcast live as I write this, though in a slightly too small player that (unusually) lacks a rescale or full-screen facility. Poor...

Others are following the event avidly, whereas Harry Cole found his "ears bleeding" at Ed's ghastly adenoidal voice and I have to concur. So, let's get a quick overview from PoliticsHome's Paul Waugh, via these two most recent tweets. First, this one a quarter of an hour ago:

Ed Mili's "British promise" is possibly the most clunkingly awful phrase I've heard in a political speech in a long time.

...and then this, a few minutes later:

Ed Mili has gone off-script from his speech. Not in a good way. Seems to be rambling a tad.

Oh well, poor Ed was never likely to be all that good at this "keeping up with the Camerons" stuff. Emulating the jacket-off, unscripted style pioneered in this country by David Cameron (at party conference and at Cameron Direct events) and copied by Nick Clegg (at his party conferences, but with the aid of an out-of-audience-view Teleprompter), poor Ed probably feels he has to attempt the same kind of thing in order to compete - even though he knows he could never do it well.

It should be noted that Cameron Direct events specifically exclude Conservative party members, ensuring an essentially hostile-plus-neutral audience and questioning, whereas Ed's events have been at Labour-friendly locations and with supporters making up the audience: even staffers posing as the public have been spotted at Ed's past events in the series. I couldn't find out (easily, anyway, and I gave up after a bit) where today's is coming from or any other details about it, so it's just another PR exercise for Ed-M in reality.

Not that it seems likely to be making much impact. There were between 24 and 26 on-line viewers while I was there, though reports indicated it peaked at 114 (remember I didn't stay with it). Well, that's not exactly impressive, even with Ed's new communications bods such as Tom Baldwin now involved...

UPDATE 11 Feb: the widget that shows how many are watching has become so embarrassing (especially as those watching were apparently hacks in the main, rather than the public) that it has now been removed!

In the end, Ed Balls (why was he there?) spoke for longer than Miliband did, according to at least two who followed the entire thing (e.g. Faisal Islam), which factoid tells a story of its own...


Note the body language of Miliband in particular: definitely subservient to Balls, and protecting his sensitive parts with his hands. It is clear who is the real leader (in the literal sense) here!

The only new policy idea I have yet gleaned from today is the idea of means-testing bus passes, free swimming and suchlike, which sounds to me as if it would cost more in bureaucracy than it would save. A modest raising of the age of entitlement to bus passes might be more sensible; but Labour have throughout the last several years been pushing for extensions to these concessionary facilities, not restricting or reducing them in any way.

Ed is therefore out of touch with his party's grass-roots and elected members around the country, as well as just about everyone else in the country!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Lutfur at 100 days

As any existing readers of this blog will no doubt recall, I have been writing about the strange case of Lutfur Rahman, the Executive Mayor of Tower Hamlets for the past hundred days.

Andrew Gilligan had been very informative on all that was going on in an almost Mafia-style operation to control that largely Muslim area of London, and now ConservativeHome has provided an update on the new mayor's progress. It makes extremely interesting reading. Here is the list of Rahman's "achievements" to date:

"In his time in office, Mr. Rahman
  • has been forced by freedom of information requests into revealing a diary which shows him rarely getting into the Town Hall before lunch – despite being paid £65,000 a year to be Mayor.
  • Despite this, Mr. Rahman has managed to book in regular sessions with the Council’s Head of Communications to “look at the proposed news list for East End Life”, the council’s propaganda newspaper.
  • has been revealed in his diary also to have gone straight back to his old ways of meeting exclusively with core supporters and key activist groups. Those who have not been loyal seem to have been frozen out of the Mayor’s schedule.
  • has gone on the BBC to attack the Government’s plans for councils to make public all their spending over £500 – despite a number of London councils voluntarily making their data available early. It was then revealed that in his previous term as leader, Mr. Rahman spent over £26,000 on celebrities such as Barbara Windsor for in-house council functions.
  • Demanded at his first council meeting as Mayor to be paid £75,000 a year – nearly four times the average wage in the borough – despite the council’s Constitutional Working Party originally proposing a salary £10,000 lower. Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors all backed a cap of £65,000. 
  • In one of his first acts as Mayor, sent council officers to Covent Garden to pick up iPhones for himself and his deputy, Cllr. Ohid Ahmed, at a cost to the Council of £600 apiece. An FOI request then revealed that the Council’s Head of Communications had banned responses to a press query about the phones.
  • took the best part of a month after his election to even appoint a Cabinet, leaving council departments with a combined budget of £1.3 billion rudderless.
  • added numerous staff to his private office, including a Head of Mayor’s Office on a salary of £60,000, while selling off historic buildings such as Limehouse Library and the LEB building on Cambridge Heath Road, and proposing cuts to council services elsewhere in his planned budget.
  • failed to turn up to represent the borough at the Remembrance Sunday service at Tower Hill."

We as a nation can use this information as a warning that exactly the same thing will no doubt be done elsewhere, systematically taking control of more of our non-national government where one individual or a clique can wield enormous power and with a huge budget (from the public purse) behind them. To all those who said "it couldn't happen here" - well, it has started to do so and will grow if we don't deal with this subversion of our local democracy to minority (and apparently downright evil and highly corrupt) interests.

Progressive Labour

I wonder whether Guido's rumour is accurate? Is Labour party leader Ed Miliband really thinking of renaming the party Progressive Labour? Kevin "Toilets" Maguire reports on this in a short piece in The Mirror (where else?)

If true, it would certainly be a logical step if one understands what is really going. It is one aspect of what is termed Cultural Marxism to change the meaning of words to suit one's political ends. The two most commonly-encountered examples of this are gay and progressive. Each is intended to convey a positive message, while neither in practice warrants it.

Another good example is Socialism, which as Stalin admitted (in the days before YouTube!) is "the everyday word for Communism". Unfortunately that video is no longer available, otherwise I'd have embedded it right here, as a reminder.

Politically, what progressive means to the left-wingers is more tax, more borrowing, more spending and more favouritism for certain groups of people. It is actually regressive as it always takes the country back to the bad old days of the 1970s and brings us to the brink of national bankruptcy. There is nothing whatsoever of any merit in such a policy direction!

As always with the left, their manipulation of language tries to conceal an outright lie; and the now Marxist-dominated Labour party (especially when one includes its Union funders) would lap up such a change, were it to be proposed by Red Ed.

Personally I'd prefer something like Social Labour, for which the short form could be S-Lab or even Slab; or perhaps Labour Rationalised, or Lab Rat for short...

Only time will tell if this rumour is true, and if so whether it goes anywhere (Mili-E is a known indecisive ditherer, at least as bad as Gordon Brown was); but it has the smell of distinct possibility, so I shall be watching for news...

Good news also comes in threes

Certainly the economic indicators for January 2011 now constitute threefold good news.

First it was manufacturing up, then the construction industry reported its January upturn, and today the service sector is also reported to have had a very successful month, growing strongly. In fact, it was much stronger than expected, with a sector Index (PMI) of 54.5. It was low at 49.7 in December, probably affected to some extent by the severe weather. January's figure represents an eight-month high, not just an improvement over December!

Even the retail sector has (as I suggested before that it would) been doing far better overall than Labour like to pretend:

"Kevin Daly, Goldman on retail PMI: 'If we average the index over past three months it's above the pre-recession (1997-2007) average.’"

These are all quite significant boosts, too, not marginal ones, and they are early indications (as there's still a very long way to go) that the country is getting back on its feet.

Citi seems to agree, also that last week's ONS growth figures were just plain wrong!

As long we don't have vast snowfalls or other unseasonal disruption, I expect the overall trend to be broadly positive across the various sectors from now on.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Voice of authority

There are several authoritative bodies publicly giving their views of nations' economies and relate matters, and in Britain we have the Bank of England, the new Office for Budget Responsibility (which is turning out to be valuable) and the IFS (Institute for Fiscal Studies).

The last of these has had a somewhat mixed reputation, with some statements and predictions that were way out of kilter with other outfits and with what turned out, but seems more recently to have got its act together.

There are also international organisations such as the IMF and the credit agencies such as Moody's and Standard & Poor. All of these are significant in not only judging how we as a nation are performing and our prospects, but also how others (the movers and shakers) view us. In the case of the credit rating agencies this can be crucial in establishing our loan interest repayment rates, so those perceptions are very important.

It is in that context that we see the IFS's latest assessments as being of value. There's a string of out that came out at the beginning of the new month (i.e. February), and they have been summed up in a series of tweets issuing from Tory Press HQ thus, starting with the IFS's assessment of the situation in Britain just a year ago:

  • IFS: 'Last year widespread concern that UK might not get funding from financial markets. Rating agencies said UK AAA credit rating threatened.'
  • IFS: UK government bond market over past year shows investors believe the UK deficit problem will be dealt with effectively.
  • IFS: Coalition plan more credible than Lab: 'completing fiscal repair job in 1 parliament [is] more credible than a plan to tighten in a future parliament.

I think that is fairly conclusive!  Here's Pete Hoskin's ten-point summary of the IFS's new Green Budget, which makes interesting reading is an easy-to-digest form.

Interestingly, from the same Twitter source, has come this very telling Tweet regarding the Opposition's response (or lack of any) to one of the items of distinctly good news on the economy that emerged yesterday:

"Labour oddly silent on manufacturing stats yesterday and oddly silent on construction stats today: sector returned to growth in Jan"

Hmm. Nothing even from Ed Balls? It seems not!

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Fake Libraries

As regular readers her (if I have any!) will by now know, I live almost on the boundary between Lambeth and Lewisham council areas, so I keep an eye on what both of them are up to.

They're both quite bad in particular (but often different) respects, but today I was reminded of just how bad Lambeth has been for years by mention of this now two-year-old story regarding the infamous "fake libraries" that Lambeth Council created in order to fool inspectors, and then closed them again a few weeks later (probably just after the inspectors' report was published).

Today Harry Phibbs links to that story as background to the operations of that council who are now using the local taxpayers-funded council newspaper Lambeth Life to push political propaganda. Now, this is a difficult subject, as there are degrees of this kind of thing that might or might not be acceptable; but I have downloaded of copy of today's issue and it is definitely pushing it!

It might have been more acceptable if it were really a case of deprivation; but Lambeth is well known for its wasteful spending in the millions of pounds bracket, and has been that way for many years. It is notable that Lambeth's elected representation comprises 44 Labour councillors, 15 Lib Dem councillors, and just four Conservatives.

In common with most other Labour, Lib Dem or both combined dominated councils, Lambeth has become an easy place to indulge oneself and one's own or party agenda at local taxpayers' (often huge) expense. The Harry Phibbs piece mentions several examples and links to sources, so do pursue those if you want more detail.

Labour hold all the Cabinet positions at Lambeth (including Deputies, whatever they're needed for!), leader and deputy leader, and mayoralty. That can sometimes work, but not when Labour are involved.

When an administration has to falsify its actual activities, such as by creating fake libraries, even to score reasonably well with its own party's Labour-friendly (as has been shown on numerous occasions) inspection regime, then you just know that something is drastically wrong. Lambeth needs a clear-out and a fresh start!

And now for the good news...

After all the doom and gloom in recent weeks, most of which was concocted by Labour and their chums in much of the media, the confidence that some of us showed in riding out the storm (well, snow) has been shown to be justified.

Instead of "talking Britain down", as John Major used to say when he was Prime Minister, some commentators (generally those who understand something of how economies operate) were content to let short-term difficulties, outside human control, work their way out of the equation.

Thus it comes as no surprise today, the first day after the end of January 2011, to learn this:

"UK manufacturing PMI rose to record high in Jan. Expansion in UK manufacturing & employment highest for 19 years"

Here is the News Release (PDF file) from the Chartered Institute of Marketing and Supply. Note that we are cautioned that inflationary pressures 'continue to surge', but that is what those in the know expected for the time being.

A large cause of that surge has been the huge Quantitative Easing (i.e. printing money, which is then devalued in the world market from where we buy so much) during Gordon Brown's premiership, some of which has had to be continued for a while after he resigned as PM (one of Brown's many nasty legacies).

As always, the key point is that the rot has been slowed in some areas, halted in others, and the British economy continues on track to a slow, hard but eventual recovery. We've seen it before, during the Thatcher years, and Labour tried all the tricks then that they are attempting now.

This is why we should take no notice of them and continue to repair the damage, just as was done during the '80s. Now, as then, this is the only realistic way to recover, ever.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Balls on Marr

Not exactly unexpected; but here it is anyway: Ed Balls trying to spin the line that "there was no debt, except that caused by bankers, and no deficit under Labour" - or something very close to that (it's a bit fuzzy!) despite the easily-provable facts:



UPDATE 31 Jan: Full Facts seems to disagree with Balls as well...

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Tweet of the day - 29 Jan 2011

From Harry Cole, on-site witness to the London student protest, in response to Labourite "PennyRed" (Laurie Penny):

"RT @: Five thousand protesters still stopping traffic on Park Lane <- I'm on a bus there right now. It's barely a hundred."

As usual, Labour folk lying, as they are wont to do...

Meanwhile, in Manchester, National Union of Students leader Aaron Porter has been turned upon by those he led to that demo, and here is being escorted away from the scene by police "for his own safety"(!)

Friday, 28 January 2011

Egypt

Here is a link to some amazing photos of the situation in Egypt, courtesy of Reuters. There are few more at MSNBC here.

UPDATE 29 Jan @ noon: Reuters (again) now also have a one-minute clip of footage taken in Cairo this morning.

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Tower Hamlets post-script

The Labour party (of all people) have conducted an investigation and found that the new mayor, independent Lutfur Rahman, was elected with the aid of a number of 'voters' who had been added to the local Labour membership, but who did not actually exist.

There weren't enough of them to tip the balance by themselves, and produce a different electoral result; but there are other matters that - if they too were to be investigated - might then reach that level (or they might not: who knows?).

Andrew Gilligan is, as ever, on top of this and reports in very useful detail, as he has with previous episodes in this long-running story. The most telling extract, that informs us about the way election-rigging is attempted in certain places, is this:

"the Tower Hamlets electoral roll has gone up and down like a yoyo from year to year, depending on whether there are significant elections that year."

Although small variations can legitimately occur and those are expected, it really is far greater than natural changes in population and even a modest increase in registrations in electoral years could perhaps explain. There is now such a history of such things going on as Gilligan has previously reported, possibly coming to wide attention for the first time earlier this century in Birmingham.

For some reason, it nearly always seems to be Asian (usually Muslim) dominated communities where this happens. I don't know what if anything can be deduced from this, but the records show it very clearly. It is also predominantly Labour or ex-Labour candidates and their associates who have so far been found out and (in some cases) prosecuted.

While nothing conclusive should be drawn from this, as nothing is absolute in this arena, it should help inform us and possibly even allow to weigh up candidates' and parties' claims and attitudes when it comes to our own elections, especially here in London.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Tweet of the day - 26 Jan 2011

From Harry Cole (formerly Tory Bear) on today's Prime Minister's Questions:

"[Tom] Baldwin is giving Mili the ammo but he just cannot fire it properly."

It is notable that David Cameron won easily against Ed Miliband's sometimes quite nasty and occasionally desperate and shouted attacks.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Brothers-in-arms

Yes, the Miliband brothers are working together again, on a project initially set up by David M to recruit a thousand "community organisers" to resist the changes introduced by the coalition government and introduce their own changes. At least that's what this (somewhat isolated) Guardian article says.

The project is in reality aimed at bringing Labour back into government, and that is openly stated; but it looks like it will no doubt turn out to be yet another carefully dressed-up sleeper body that will one day be called upon to engage in full-scale subversion. That would be consistent with every other such initiative by Labour that involves what might loosely be termed outsiders, i.e. not the party hard core.

So, watch out for this Movement for Change, and be aware of who is behind it and its ultimate goals.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Gordon's time bombs

The excellently-named and generally well-constructed Underdogs Bite Upwards blog-site has a very good post on Gordon Brown's "time bombs" that were set to go off during the current government's period in office though devised and put in place before last May's General Election.

Quite a few commentators were already well aware of Brown's "scorched earth" spending policy at that pre-election time, knowing he was spending public money like there was no tomorrow (which for Brown, thankfully there wasn't), but only a few of them seemed to have cottoned-on to the devious and corrupt plans he was putting in place.

Brown's overriding hatred for the political Right in general, and the Conservatives in particular, wasn't exactly a well-guarded secret. His agenda of everything but everything being about him and dedicated almost exclusively to the pursuance of that agenda, regardless of the cost to everyone else, has become more widely known during the past year or so. The sheer rawness of that manic obsession is now better known than it was while Brown was Chancellor, for example.

That was, and continues to be, sheer evil. Gordon Brown is one of the lowest forms of life I have ever encountered, and should by now have been executed as a warning to all those who would in future seek to abuse their positions for corrupt personal ends at everyone else's expense. As we know, one of Labour's earliest actions when getting into office in 1997 was to change the capital punishment provision for treason, in the full knowledge that they were committing treason every day in office.

It wasn't just the money: it was the selling-out of Britain to the Frankfurt School scheme to destroy our society (sedition and treason) so tht it could be swept up in a "socialist revolution" that would have turned Britain into a Soviet-style dictatorship, with Labour and their cronies at the helm and the rest of us as very much third-class citizens in fear for our lives. That was their plan all along, and we now know this.

All of them should be tried and deealt with under the law that existed before they tampered with it!

Today, as the "Underdogs" blogger has written, even our children are being deliberately subverted, which just goes to show the sheer depths of evil into which these filthy Communists (for that is what Labour truly are) have been prepared to descend. All of them were complicit in the decade-long programme that brought us to this point, and all of them need to be tried and dealt with appropriately.

Friday, 21 January 2011

Cabinet and Shadow experience

Dizzy has been looking at the real-world experience of those Conservatives and Lib Dems in the Cabinet and their Labour shadows, the former in response to a comment at his site regarding his initial reporting of just the "shadows" category, sourced from Richard Littlejohn (though he provides no link to this).

Here they are in full, with the added explanation that a SpAd is a special adviser, and I think a Wonk is a so-called ministerial bag carrier, being a loose variation on the general definition here.

 First, here is the worldly experience of the coalition Cabinet before being politicians.
  • David Cameron - Director of Corporate Affairs at Carlton Communications (7 years)
  • Nick Clegg - Foreign Correspondent
  • William Hague - Management consultant McKinsey & Company
  • George Osborne - CCHQ Wonk
  • Ken Clarke - Barrister QC
  • Theresa May - Bank of England, financial consultant
  • Liam Fox - GP, Civilian Army Medical Officer and Divisional Surgeon with St John Ambulance
  • Vince Cable - Economics lecturer, Chief Economist, Royal Dutch Shell
  • Iain Duncan-Smith - British Army Officer, Scots Guard
  • Chris Huhne - Economic journalist, City entrepreneur, MD of Fitch IBCA
  • Andrew Lansley - Civil Servant
  • Michael Gove - Journalist
  • Eric Pickles - Unknown
  • Philip Hammond - Director of Speywood Medical Limited, Castlemead Ltd, Castelmead Home. Consu1ltant World Bank.
  • Caroline Spelman - National Union Farmers, lobbyist
  • Andrew Mitchell - UN Peacekeeper, British Army Royal Tank Regiment, Investment Bank Lazard, Manager and Financial Controller at Touche Ross & Co, Audit Manager at Storehouse PLC, Finance Director at W H Everett & Son Ltd, Senior Strategy Advisor for Accenture
  • Jeremy Hunt - English language teacher in Japan, IT PR company, Profile PR
  • Owen Paterson - Sales Director and Managing Director of British Leather Company, Director of Parsons and Sons (leather company)
  • Michael Moore - Accountant
  • Cheryl Gillan - Marketing consultant, Ernst & Young, marketing director with Kidsons Impey
  • Baroness Warsi - Lawyer
  • Lord Strathclyde - Hereditary Peer
  • George Young - Economic adviser to Post Office Corporation
  • Francis Maude - Criminal lawyer
  • Dominic Grieve QC - Barrister
  • Patrick McLoughlin - farmer, coal miner

Now, here's the run down of the Shadow Cabinet members' worldly experience.
  • Ed Miliband - Wonk/SpAd
  • Harriet Harman - Political campaign lawyer
  • Ed Balls - Leader writer (4 years), SpAd
  • Douglas Alexander - Solicitor(six months)
  • Yvette Cooper - Journalist (2 years)
  • Sadiq Khan - Political campaign lawyer
  • Jim Murphy - Student politics
  • John Denham - Student politics, political advocacy.
  • Liam Byrne - Merchant Bank (Rothchilds), Accenture consultant
  • John Healey - Trade Unions
  • Andy Burnham - SpAd
  • Caroline Flint - Local Government
  • Maria Eagle - Solicitor
  • Meg Hillier - Journalist (not for long)
  • Mary Creagh - Charity work
  • Shaun Woodward - BBC researcher/producer doing crap telly.
  • Ann McKechin - Solicitor (7 years)
  • Peter Hain - Trade Union researcher
  • Ivan Lewis - Voluntary sector campaigner
  • Tessa Jowell - Social worker and administrator for a charity.
  • Angela Eagle - Trade Union
  • Baroness Royall of Blaisdon - SpAd
  • Rosie Winterton - SpAd, lobbyist
  • Hilary Benn - Trade Union
  • Lord Bassam of Brighton - Social worker, professional squatter
  • Baroness Scotland of Asthal QC - Political campaign lawyer
  • Tony Lloyd - Lecturer (2 years), MP for 28 years

As Dizzy points out, via his two posts, there is a huge difference between the two groups. How can Labour relate to how the real world works and how real people have to live their lives when nearly all of their portfolio-ed MPs (and the vast majority of their backbenchers, I believe) have little or no experience of that world out there?

If there is any kind of class divide, it is surely that and not the artificial "Eton toff" divide that Labour dishonestly portray as a Conservative disconnect from ordinary people. In reality it is Labour who are disconnected from (most of) the rest of us, which explains their "on another planet" style that so often breaks through the spun lines they are supposed to be parroting but don't really understand and frequently get wrong.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Quote of the day - 20 Jan 2011

From Fraser Nelson, on the switch of Shadow Chancellor from Alan Johnson to Ed Balls:

"As for Alan Johnson - what a farce. Ed Milliband [sic] looks like a plank. Choosing a Shadow Chancellor is the most important thing you can do as Opposition Leader. He chose wrong, and everyone thinks so. Even the man he appointed."

Despite that, Ed Miliband said, when he appointed Johnson, that Ed Balls was the wrong man for the job. What has changed all of a sudden? Sheer desperation through lack of talent and ability within the Labour parliamentary party?

Meanwhile, it turns out that Johnson's "personal" reasons for resigning are not to do with illness (it looks to be genuinely so, actually); and Ed Balls has been spotted grinning like a Cheshire cat ever since the announcement that he is to take over.

Alan Johnson to quit

That's the latest news as I write, being effectively confirmed by at least three separate and not directly connected sources.

Well, the position he held was embarrassingly bad for him, and he really was a fish out of water as Shadow Chancellor. The best that can come from this is that at least he tried it and found out for himself that it is not "just another job" in national politics. Note that his resignation is said to be "for personal and family reasons" so are apparently nothing to do with his difficulties handling the brief itself.

However, let Johnson's problems with the Shadow Chancellorship be a lesson for all of those who might be tempted to have a go at the real Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne. The position is far more technical than political (and it's very political!); and even the shadow equivalent post is not something that just any old politician can take on easily or successfully!

UPDATE at 5.10 pm: Now confirmed News on the Shadow Cabinet front is that Ed Balls is to be the replacement Shadow Chancellor (no surprise there!), Yvette Cooper is to go to Home, Wee Dougie Alexander to FCO, Liam "there's no money left" Byrne to Welfare, and Tessa Jowell is to be given extra responsibilites shadowing the cabinet office. This is a very Brownite line-up; and Ed-M will be unable to control Ed-B in any way.

There may be trouble ahead...

Tweet of the day - 20 Jan 2011

From Tory Press HQ regarding Ed Miliband's second attempt at a "Cameron Direct" style of event:

"92 viewers watched Ed's last online 'public' broadcast. Number of viewers today = zero as livestream fails "

Yes, reports have been coming in from all over that the feed from this event was at first very poor (one description of the sound being as if the microphone had been placed in water) and then failing altogether. Following the embedded link displays this message:

"Unfortunately, due to technical difficulties, the livestream is not currently available."

Islamophobia doesn't exist

That's right: it was invented by the fascists who are trying to impose themselves on us all.

Well, we probably already knew this; but just in case, here's a very clear, no-nonsense six-minute video on the subject, and it is thoroughly recommended that everyone listens to it:



Especially today, when Baroness Warsi is in the news on a closely-related topic, we all need to have a clear idea of what is really going on and what lies behind it.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Tweet of the day - 19 Jan 2011

Labour's Alistair Campbell, tweeting as "campbellclaret" (how pretentious is that?):

"Listening to Jo Brand telling great jokes re government at Labour fundraiser"

Now, who else could possibly even consider having the ghastly Jo Brand at such an event? Brand, whose 'humour' revolves primarily around bodily functions and really quite unappetising medical and similar matters.

Talk about dragging down to the lowest common denominator, with the emphasis on "common"! Bad Al Campbell even refers to her material as "great jokes"!

Any decent comedian would be able to find and aim at a point several levels higher than Ms Brand's brand(!) of so-called comedy. Even sniggering schoolboys would be embarrassed! This tells us a lot about Labour, so is well worth my reporting...

Constituency sizes

With the relevant Bill currently passing through Parliament, Labour have (predictably) been kicking up another fuss over the proposed equal-sized constituencies. For years Labour has benefited from unequal-sized constituencies that give voters in some areas more power-per-vote than thos in other areas.

Admittedly there are a couple of difficult cases such as the Isle of Wight one, and I don't know how best to solve those; but the basic principle remains: all votes should be of equal weight/value. Labour call that "gerrymandering", whereas it is in reality the present boundaries that seem to have been gerrymandered.

Interestingly, it was the nineteenth-century Chartist reform movement that established the principle of equal-sized constituencies (point No, 5 at this Wikipedia page), that movement being described as "possibly the first mass labour movement in the world". Notice that: Labour movement!

If you read through the rest of the Charter's main aims, you can see how very much in tune with the original (pre-Fabian) principles of the original Labour party the whole thing was. This is yet another reminder that today's Labour is far removed from that principled political movement of yesteryear, and is nowadays essentially just a Communist outfit with a carefully manufactured public image, whose primary aim is to turn Britain into a kind of Soviet Union Mk 2, via the EU and others.

Fortunately the Bill should go through, despite Labour Lords' well-reported filibustering practices, which will be a victory for the electorate, rather than any political party's own vested interests, which of course is as it should be.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Tweet of the day - 18 Jan 2011

My blogging mentor, John Ward, of all people, on the BBC's Robert Peston and his programme (being shown as I write this) on the big banks:

"I can't watch Peston. I always switch the Pestoff!"

Having seen part of this programme and its obvious lefty slant, I can well understand the sentiment, and I shan't be bothering with any more of it!

Hypocrisy

Now there's a word we see all the time, where members of one political party will accuse one or more members of an opposing party of hypocrisy.

Sometimes it's a valid claim, often it isn't when one looks closely, and sometimes it falls into a bit of a grey area and is difficult (if not impossible) to decide with any degree of certainty. Occasionally, though, something quite clear-cut emerges, and when that happens it is nearly always concerning the actions and attitudes of a Labour politician or staffer.

Today's (near-enough impossible to refute) such claim revolves around "Penny Red" (real name Laurie Penny, of the New Statesman) and an advert for a "female preferred" recruit to be an intern who would be paid below the minimum wage - something that Labour themselves introduced in order to prevent this kind exploitation as they saw it.

Several commentators have been running with this story today, but Guido has the definitive story. As the job advert has now been amended, I hope that someone took a copy of the original - something I'd have done myself (and posted here) if I had heard about this before the change was made.

UPDATE 21 Jan: Mark "Crash! Bang!" Wallace has been conducting a little research and found that Jobs Direct wouldn't have accepted that job advertisement.

Monday, 17 January 2011

A trillion pounds

The moment-by-moment debt clock is, as I write this, rapidly approaching the one trillion pounds mark. Of course, this is only the part of our national debt that appears in the official books. The real amount is nearer five trillion!

Update at 5.16 pm: the clock has just this moment passed the one trillion pound mark!

Ed must go!

So says the highly-respected John Rentoul of the generally left-leaning Independent on Sunday, on today's Daily Politics show on BBC-2, as tweeted here:

"John Rentoul on DP: If Labour are serious about wanting to win the next election, Ed Miliband needs to go"

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Quote of the day - 16 Jan 2011

Danny Alexander, commenting on Ed Miliband's failure to accept Labour's blame for the country's financial mess:

"[It's] all 'mea' and no 'culpa'."

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Depressing day for Red Ed

It really hasn't been Ed Miliband's day. First, his speech to the Fabian Society has been dissected and found totally inadequate for an opposition leader whose primary job is to guide his party towards electability.

Of course, one might expect a Conservative MP to take it apart, as Matthew Hancock has in The Spectator Coffee House blog today. However it is difficult to seriously quibble with what he has written; and the ever-sharp (though still in need of a proofreader!) editor of the Speccie, James Forsyth, has reached similar conclusions, though he thinks the Labour leader might at least be moving toward acknowledging his party's failures on the economy.

Bottom line:
Red Ed is still in denial about Labour's part in Britain's financial mess, and can therefore never be credible on the economy!

Ed's problem is that the general public will come to realise this over time, and this will become plainly visible in the opinion polls in about two years from now, I estimate. By that time, Labour really need to be in a position where the voters of Britain will take real notice of that party's leadership (and yes, Alan Johnson will have to be replaced as Shadow Chancellor before that can happen) to give them a good run-up time toward the 2015 election.

I can't see it happening, myself.

Meanwhile, another of Ed's wheezes, the Fresh Ideas website, had a mere 96 visitors who logged on to the site for Ed's live question-and-answer session. All in all it hasn't been a very successful time for him, which might explain the somewhat strained and manic look on his face in the photo above!

Friday, 14 January 2011

London murders down

Today's news is that murders in London during 2010 were not only down on the year before, but the lowest they have been for about a third of a century - specifically, since 1978. One reason for this that has been put forward is the removal of weapons such as knives from the streets, making it more difficult to commit violence in general.

This is all good news, and shows we are on the path toward getting our communities back from gangs and other criminals, as well as reducing the tendency toward domestic violence. There's still a very long way to go, but we are now heading in the right direction after years of going the wrong way - something that could never have happened under a Labour of similarly lefty government and London mayor.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Mouthpieces

For anyone who might have thought that the top Labour-supporting blogs were independent, think again!

Although there probably is a minor element of their work that is not entirely enslaved to the Labour party, it has been obvious to anyone watching that there are essentially Labour mouthpieces, often telling exactly the same story at the same time.

Guido has now got something more definitive on this, which is helpful in showing all of us who had noticed what was going on that we weren't jumping to false conclusions. It was and is all real, and so typical of the left! Remember Pravda in the days of the USSR? It's much the same.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Quote of the day - 12 Jan 2011

David Cameron at Prime Minister's Questions just now:

"We've ended up with a shadow chancellor that can't count and a Labour leader who doesn't count."

As the BBC's Laura Kuenssberg commented live:

"lab mps were laughing, then stopped rather suddenly"

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Left behind

Although voting intention figures are (as expected) currently good for Labour, it isn't because the people of Britain believe their tosh about the economy.

Although tribalism undoubtedly plays a part in any poll, so it'll never be clear-cut one way or the other, the one published yesterday by YouGov (PDF file) contains some interesting figures. The Independent's John Rentoul has today tweeted the answer to this question:

"Who do you think is most to blame for the current spending cuts?"

It turns out to be Con-LD coalition 22%; Last Labour government 40%, which is a suitably convincing majority for Labour being the ones blamed by the population at large.

Labour really have much lower credibility than they (and their mouthpieces) like to suggest, as people are no longer being taken in by them. Their good buddy at the huge Unite public-sector Union, Len McCluskey, has been caught out by Channel 4's FactCheck making dodgy claims regarding the nation's deficit and debt, getting a Fiction score on the FactCheck meter.

The deficit turns out to be the largest since 1945 (the end of the Second World War), completely contradicting McCluskey's claim that it "isn't all that big, historically). He wasn't quite as far out with regard to the overall national debt, which is the highest for just forty years or so (viz. since the late '60s). So that's all right then!

Typical lefty! Hasn't a clue, and is either dishonest himself or has been fed duff info by someone else who is either dishonest or just plain incompetent. Whichever way it turns out to be, the message is that these bods have no place commenting on such topics anyway and should never be invited or allowed to do so.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Giffords shooter was a "Left-wing pothead"

At least according to this report. (Of course, we don't yet know who shot the Congress member, but if this turns out to be right).

Here's another interesting snippet that, so far, the mainstream media seem to have missed completely. It isn't the whole story, it would seem, and Barking Spider has some more on this, which is very informative. However, it is known that the suspected shooter has read Karl Marx and a range of other works in the same genre, and (I gather) found the Communist manifesto and Mein Kampf to be his favourites.

Oh dear, all of that will upset the currently rolling anti-Sarah Palin lefty bandwagon...

Seventeen votes

If anyone reading this thinks that there is a large groundswell in favour of the planned Underground strikes (planned to occur around the time of the royal wedding) - think again!

As this page at the RMT Union shows, only 29 station staff voted on the strike issue, of whom just 17 voted in favour (12 against, no spoilt ballot papers). I have taken a copy of the page as proof, just in case it is edited or removed later.

Now, what does that tell you about this business?

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Nut roasts

Oh no, actually NetRoots - today's big event for the political 'centre-left', or Communists of various types, most pretending not to be. It was not an altogether auspicious occasion, apparently.

The first trouble those following the conference on-line experienced was that they didn't know what hash-tag to use on Twitter, so ended up with two of them. Really clever!

At the event itself, there was a debate on whether they should still call each other "comrades", someone was lambasted for having a Nestle chocolate bar, and so it went on.

Their 'best' idea seems to have been to host all significant left-wing blogs on a common server. I'm all in favour of that: whenever the server goes down, they all vanish from sight for the duration! It's what we call the all-eggs-in-one-basket scenario...

Perhaps the true validity (or lack of it) was summed up by this Top Tweet by Puffles2010:

"Puffles thinks that the big cheeses at the conference should spend a few weeks in working class communities..."

There's your real disconnect, summed up so well and becoming the Top Tweet in the #netroots conversation, which in itself tells us how true it rang with Twitterers. Champagne Socialists like Polly Toynbee and the rest of the Islington Set have no idea what "working class" really means, and everyone knows it - even from their own side.of the political divide!

UPDATE: Jackart seems to have sussed out what they're trying to do, better than I was able; also that "they are doomed to fail" as he puts it.