Saturday, 31 December 2011

Year End 'Musings'

How - and why - is it that a nation which emerged from World War II, albeit exhausted and impoverished, having fought yet another war in the belief that it should remain free to make its own independent decisions, now finds itself in the situation whereby it cannot? World War II was fought, as have been most wars in which this nation has been embroiled, to preserve that final independence and our becoming part of another country was not in anyone's thoughts, be that of the left, right or 'centre'.

Back then, in the 40s and 50s, history taught in our schools instilled a pride in the achievements of our nation - the defeat of the Armada; Nelson's and Wellington's defeats of Napoleon; and Churchill's defiance of Hitler - achievements at great cost of life - that preserved that independence in the face of threats to create a continent-wide despotism on the mainland of Europe, one that wished to impose its power on our nation. What no-one then would have envisaged was that over the next half-century our nation, guided by its political elite, would set about a continuing programme of surrendering those very freedoms and independence for which so many, over the course of centuries, gave their lives. (Which lends an air of hypocrisy to the actions of our political leaders who - dare one say irreverently - attend the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday - but I digress)

How and why has this come about? By the simple expediencies practised by our political elite - and their political, careerist, cohorts, aided and abetted by those within 'civil society' - of lies, obfuscation and the imposition of what may be termed democratised dictatorship. The situation whereby those who persist in referring to themselves as 'Honourable', yet have behaved in a manner that can only be described as dishonourable, has to be ended - and ended now if this nation of ours is to recover it's status as a beacon for democracy.

That a change to 'Referism' and Direct Democracy is required cannot be denied - and in passing I have to say that a political party that, in effect, believes in the maintenance of the 'status quo' regarding political representation, that believes Parliament must have the decision on signing treaties and the consent to engage in wars, does not deserve the vote of anyone! (Accepted that that party is in the process of 'revising' their policies, but just how long do they need? How long have they been in existence - and only now do they decide that they need 'policies', policies that at first sight are half-baked and therefore need revision?)

Those 'Honourable' people - and their sycophants - will be 'named and shamed' by the Judas Class and that 'naming and shaming', plus the opportunity to discuss the benefits of 'Referism' and Direct Democracy at Talk Constitution, will hopefully create a debate that will spell the beginning of a change to our democracy that is long overdue.

* Acks to the CPS, their pamphlet 'Guilty Men', the authors Oborne and Weaver and the Foreward, written by Peter Jay.


Regular readers will be aware that it had been my intention to publish a new website,, which had been planned for 1st January 2012.

Due to the temporary ill-health of one of the moderators, who also happens to be responsible for the 'graphics', it is necessary that the 'start date' be deferred.

Apologies to all who are interested in this subject and, in the meantime, I can but crave your patience. 

A vagary of the honours system

Be one of four who commit a crime, be found guilty, serve half your sentence and years later receive an honour.

Be one of that same four who commit a crime, be found guilty, be spared any committal sentence due to ill health, but have your honour taken away instead.

Weird honours system.

Just saying.............

Friday, 30 December 2011

Hardly a 'cleverly' thought through idea, surely?

The Leader of the Conservative Group in the London Assembly has published his ideas for reform of the House of Lords. He writes:
"Getting to the top of their profession, Trade Union, Constabulary, armed force, religious body, charitable body, business organisation etc. would ensure that the Lords is packed with people who have real world experience, know what they are talking about and hold the respect of the sectors from which they came." (my emphasis)
And bugger the respect of the taxpayer who has to pay for this?

It is highly debatable whether any of the above, having got to the top of their profession, possess the faintest idea what they are talking about.

This is an example of Conservative 'thinking'? Oh, wait..............

What we have here is another 'idea' for yet more 'government', which begs the repeat of a question posed by Ian Parker-Joseph - and one that I have repeated more than once. No-one has yet managed to answer.
"If you don’t believe that Britain is governed totally by political rules, regulations, orders and diktats, please name me 6 everyday activities, yes, just six, that you undertake that does not require a. permission, b. licence, c. regulated action, d. regulated packaging, materials, ingredients, tools etc. i.e. 6 activities that never touch the state or a regulator."
Well, anyone fancy a crack?


Now where did I put that piano wire?*

The Taxpayers' Alliance reports that the average wage earner will need to work until 26th July in the coming year to pay for their share of government spending (which includes the cost of keeping our politicians in the style to which they have become accustomed) and regulation (the majority of which they have only had to 'rubber-stamp) combined.

* hunting feverishly .......................

Cross party talks = 'stitch-up'?

Peter Hoskin, The Coffee House, posts on the forthcoming 'cross party talks' due to take place in the New Year. Discussing the problems being caused by an ageing population, Hoskin writes:
"It's just that they don't want to be the ones to implement the tax hikes or spending cuts that will be necessary to fund it. If they can talk it through with the other parties — the thinking goes — then this crucial policy area can be detoxified, the blame spread more or less evenly."
Which begs the question just what other 'policy areas' are 'talked through' so as to detoxify the subject? EU membership? Denial of a cost/benefit analysis on said membership? Denial of a referendum on said membership? Denial of any public discussion on said membership? Denial of any suggestion that we no longer are a 'sovereign' nation?

The picture that the Coffee House uses:

suggests a 'bonhomie' that is far from the impression that PMQs would suggest, so therefore we can assume that PMQs is but a 'show' put on for the general gratification of the public - likewise politics in general. (So how many of us didn't know that?) That the impression given of Clegg being the central figure in the 'stitch-up' being practised on the British electorate is not that far from the truth. Although if every picture should tell a story, then Cameron should be standing between Clegg and MilibandE purely to underline the words of the 'marching instruction': Left, Left, Left ..... Left'. Had the picture been posed as I suggest - and we all know that a picture cannot lie - it would have confirmed that the 'Right' had been omitted.

Just saying...........

Fair reporting on fare increase?

That the Daily Mail has been renamed by some bloggers as the Daily Fail/Wail is understandable when considering the poor standard of journalism exhibited by that newspaper*, none more so than in an article today by Ray Massey; one that deals with the fare increases for rail travel due to come into force on 1st January 2012. This article contains the obligatory soundbites from various 'interested' people such as Sophie Allain of the Campaign for Better Transport; Bob Crow of the RMT Union (with whom Ukip seem 'best buddies'- nuff said); and Michael Roberts, chief executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies.

What is odd about Massey's column is that only last August the same newspaper reported on an EU proposal that railways should be operated on the basis of 'user pays' - on which I posted here** - that report hinting at a 50% increase in rail fares, should the proposal come to fruition. Even though the Mail is a supporter of this country's membership of the European Union one would have thought, in an attempt to be informative, Massey might just have mentioned that earlier report and its contents? Neither, of course, is there any mention that Osborne's deferment of an increase to 3% of the RPI aspect of fare increases may be linked to the fact that not until then is the impending Directive from Brussels expected to be published.

Presumably Massey and the Mail are either ignorant of the 'user pays' principle or decided to play along with their political friends by not mentioning the principle in the first place and that it is nothing new. For example, on that latter point, it was raised back in 1998 by Neil Kinnock when Commissioner for Transport; likewise the Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC was based on the same principle.

It is also intriguing that Bob Crow, an avowed anti-EUer, did not attempt to raise this 'user pays' point - or maybe he did and the Mail decided not to print that. One would have thought that at least the Campaign for Better Transport might have mentioned it, but then looking at the graphic for their sources of funding (page 9 of their Annual Review) perhaps not. Unfortunately it was not possible to look at their annual accounts as the link provided does not work (an email has been sent.....). 

As with HS2, where I have shown an EU connection, so there is the same 'connection' where rail fare increases are concerned. That not one politician, nor 'stakeholder' cares to mention these connections can only show that there is indeed a policy in place to hide the truth from the British public. Where the hiding of truth is concerned Dav il Cam should take note that we are not all in it together. Where that practice is concerned, they may be - we in the blogosphere most definitely are not.

* Though tis a tad unfair to single out the Daily Mail when just about every member of the MSM exhibits 'Fail' where journalism is concerned.

** This post contains links to the August Mail article and access to the EU White Paper and other related documentation.

Thursday, 29 December 2011

Out with the old - In with the new!

Just what is it that makes our political leaders believe we are the slightest bit interested in what they have to say, come year's end - lets face it, most of us have ignored them for the preceding 12 months so what makes them believe we will heed their last exhortation? For the record, this is that of Clegg and this that of MilibandE - we have yet to be provided with that of Our Dear Leader, Dav il Cam.

Where our politicians are concerned, the New Year is but the direct descendant of a long line of proven liars exemplified, in their case, as the opportunity for a new start on old habits. It could be said that their New Year messages tend to go in one year and straight out the other, whilst simultaneously wishing 'Cheers' to themselves and therefore yet another chance for them to get it right.

The public, on the other hand, have only one wish come each New Year; and that is that they be allowed to show a little more tolerance to their politicians in the vain hope that they will not take up too much of their time - and each year the public are disappointed. That the public are doomed in their hope is, to paraphrase Samuel Johnson, because it is much easier to respect a man who has always had respect, than to respect a man who they know was, last year, no better than themselves - and will be no better come another year.

One can, again paraphrasing, but trust in the words of T.S. Eliot:
"For last year's words belong to last year's politicians And next year's words await another voice."
Indeed, let us hope that we can throw out the old and bring in the new - that new being those of honour, principle, integrity and a true belief in our nation; that they seek power not to exercise it, but to return it to those from whence it has been unjustly stolen.

I wish everyone a most Happy New Year - and pray that your God makes it so.

(With acks to others too numerous to individually mention)

Wheels within wheels

Fausty today posts the question whether it has been noticed how militarised the United Kingdom is becoming. She also asks the obvious question whether Theresa May is acclimatising us to being 'policed' by the military; does she and the other politicians temporarily in charge of our democracy realise what they're doing and if so, why are they doing it? If not, why are the cretins still in charge?

That the future of our nation is no longer in the hands of our politicians is best explained by referring to two related posts by Ian Parker-Joseph; this, first published in 2009, from which:
"The EU idea of European Defence is more akin to that of the old Soviet Union’s, that of ‘taking care’ of internal dissenters, keeping the people harnessed, civilian interrogation methods, militarisation of the police, smudging the lines between civilian and military and the use of the military in internal scenarios."
and this published in 2010, from which:
"Lets go back in time a bit. Back to the days when Tony Blair ruled supreme in the UK, and not long after the horrendous events of 9/11. The UK, like most other western nations started to implement a flood of anti-terror legislation. But who wrote it? (it is all virtually identical in just about every country), and who checked to see if it was being implemented properly."
Do read both posts as they are, with anything that IPJ publishes, informative and they lay bare information that never gets to appear in our supine MSM.

Theresa May, who like her colleagues is but one of Les Marionettes de Bruxelles, knows damn well what she does and why she does it. As to why, as one of the cretins, she is where she is can only be explained by the fact that the public have not the faintest idea what is happening behind their backs - political 'transparency' only goes so far, after all.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Yet more bureaucrats? Sheesh!

From Politics Home we learn that the incoming head of Ofsted has backed the idea of local commissioners being set up to spot problems and oversee changes to failing schools. In an interview with The Times, Sir Michael Wilshaw said there needed to be “some sort of intermediary bodies which can detect when things aren't going well”. Labour’s Stephen Twigg said his party would give “serious consideration” to the proposals. (my emphasis)

From the website of Ofsted (Who we are and what we do):
"Ofsted is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills. We report directly to Parliament and we are independent and impartial. We inspect and regulate services which care for children and young people, and those providing education and skills for learners of all ages. Every week, we carry out hundreds of inspections and regulatory visits throughout England, and publish the results on our website." (my emphasis)
Needless to say, it appears that Stephen is unable to 'Twigg' that this is just creating yet more public sector workers at a time when the government is attempting to cull that group - neither does he appear to question why, if additional 'Commissioners' are required, just what the hell have Ofsted being doing?

Just saying..............

Drunk as a skunk

We are advised today that Dav il Cam, ('Dav il', as in the landlord of Hell) aka Dear Leader of Region UK in the People's Republic of Europe, is of a mind to increase the price of alcohol by one means or another. The Daily Telegraph editorial bemoans the fact that unless this 'measure' is fully thought through, problems may well arise. That comment prompts two immediate thoughts: when has any political policy ever been fully thought through - and come to that, when has any DT editorial ever been thought through, today's being the latest example; but I digress.

Today is also the day when it is announced by, amongst others, Politics Home that MPs are set for a survey on the facilities in the House of Commons for the third successive year at a cost of £27,790, making the point that in previous years many Parliamentarians have complained about the price of food in the the various eateries and bars on the Parliamentary Estate. Presumably, in consideration of his statement that we are all in it together, Dav il Cam will also decree that MPs will be paying the 'state price' for their alcohol.

Dav il Cam illustrates only too plainly that a skunk can easily get drunk; in his case from the power he 'assumes' under our system of governance - aka democratised dictatorship.

Alone and lonely

Yesterday Frances Coppola produced a very thought-provoking post entitled 'Loneliness', one in which she suggested that being alone does not necessarily mean being lonely - when in fact it can and does, a point that in the ensuing exchange of views on Twitter appeared to escape the notice of those tweeting.

When someone has lived on their own for a number of years it becomes increasingly difficult to entertain the notion of sharing your life and 'space' with another because, as a result of living alone, I believe one tends to become 'selfish' in that it is possible to resent the loss of an ability to do what you want, when you want. This then leads to an 'inner conflict', one in which the ability to please oneself fights with the wish to have someone with whom to talk, someone with whom to share the pleasures of life on a daily basis.

On the emotional front similar conflicts can occur as a result of ones experience of the life lived so far. Let us assume a hypothetical situation, one in which someone has been 'hurt' twice (by 'hurt' it is meant that one has 'suffered' infidelity) Taking this scenario further, let us assume that an element of cynicism understandably enters ones reasoning, in that should someone declare undying love for you the first reaction on your part is: 'do you?'.

As one becomes older the future becomes even more and more uncertain when the matter of lifespan enters the equation, in view of which the question then arises whether you have the right to cause the other person the grief which presumably they will feel should you die after only a year or two of 'togetherness'. Conflicting with that is the opposing problem that all one wishes for is company, both physical and emotional. All in all, an insurmountable quandary methinks.

One can have all the books, music, 'interests' and family possible, however it does not negate the fact that one can still be 'alone' and 'lonely'.

Just saying..........

Afterthought: Consider a recently bereaved person, age immaterial, I wager they feel alone and lonely on a daily basis. Consider the single severely disabled, I wager they too feel alone and lonely on a daily basis.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

And we do not live under a democratised dictatorship?

IanPJonPolitics links to an article by Tim Worstall who in turn links to a report in the Guardian newspaper, from which we learn that a law rejected by Parliament was introduced by means of a Statutory Instrument (SI). (You can read more on the latter from Wikipedia.) Tim Worstall's post has also been picked-up by The Last Ditch.

IPJ is correct that the use of SIs needs to be revisited, it being a means by which EU directives are introduced, as it is but one aspect of how new laws are effected without any opportunity of the people to agree or disagree. This method of 'government' though is not confined to central government, with the practise also carried out by local authorities. Richard North, EU Referendum, comments that local authorities derive income from fees and charges, none of which is subject to any real accountability or democratic control. Local Authorities also spend taxpayer's money without any form of democratic control or accountability, as illustrated by this article from Ambush Predator.

For sure, political parties publish manifestos come election time, but these are so loosely worded and contain 'vague' promises, such that they are virtually worthless. How many of us would hire a group of tradesman to renovate (or 'fix') an old property without knowing what work is needed, how the work will be carried out and, more importantly, what it will cost? Yet is not that what we do, come election time, seek to select a political party who promises to 'fix' our country without knowing how they intend going about it, nor what the final cost will be?

Regular readers will have realized that I am leading up to something - and that 'something' will appear during the course of the coming weekend, at which time a suggestion for an alternative form of democracy and constitution will be presented.

Monday, 26 December 2011

There is no need for a trial in an independent court (Parliament is itself a court).

Allegra Stratton, the Guardian, reports that MPs are planning a new criminal offence of not attending Select Committee hearings.

In a report on Parliamentary Privilege, published in 1999, it concluded that the crime of "contempt of Parliament" included "without reasonable excuse, failing to attend before the House or a committee after being summoned to do so". The report stated:

"Historically the power to adjudge a contempt is linked to the power to commit to prison. In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries committal to the custody of the Serjeant-at-Arms, or to prison, was a regular punishment. The House of Commons has power to imprison until the end of the current parliamentary session, however long or short that may be."
The end of the Parliamentary session is usually taken to mean until the Queen's Speech in October or November, whilst it should be noted that there is no need for a trial in an independent court as Parliament is itself a court - points that Stratton does mention in the article.

That the proposal is subject to the cabinet committee which oversees constitutional change must surely bring forth the query, yet again, of by what right do our politicians enact constitutional change without consulting those that they are elected to serve and who maintain them in a lifestyle we 'ordinary' people can only imagine? That Select Committees do have enhanced power - too much power some would maintain - is a fact, as illustrated by my previous post in which an MP had his 'fine reduced by circa £4,000.

We are most definitely being led towards a situation by a section of our society who have no regard whatsoever for democracy and the 'rights' of the people - a situation of dictatorship, the birth of which is all too apparent if one looks. How many more 'steps' will be taken by politicians before the people awake to what is happening around and to them? How many more steps will be taken by politicians until any hope of a change whereby the introduction of 'Referism' and Direct Democracy will be impossible?


Today John Redwood posted what I believe most would accept as a reasonable answer to his own question of whether a Central Bank can go bust. In answer to a well-reasoned comment by Faustiesblog, which hinted at the probity of MPs, John Redwood replied:
".......I think it very unlikely that an MP who has served time for false accounting or theft will make it back into government. It is very unlikely they would stand again for election, and unlikely they would be elected if they did."
Was not Alan Keen guilty of false accounting and was it not suggested by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards he should repay £5,678 for a serious breach of the rules? Did not the Commons Standards and Privileges Committee reduce that figure to £1,500? Was not Alan Keen re-elected on 6 May 2010? (Wikipedia) Alan Keen may not have served time, but the man committed what was in effect a fraud. Yet on November 23rd David Cameron delivers a eulogy to the man? A eulogy repeated by MilibandE who stated that Keen had 'friends across the House' - which is probably why Alan Keen escaped being 'thrown to the wolves', thus not suffering what may be called 'Devine' intervention.

It is indeed sad that a Rt. Honourable member of the House of Commons should insert the words 'served time' in his response, because are there not 'Honourable' members still sitting who broke the spirit of the expenses scheme at the time? They may not have 'served time', but they were considered 'guilty' by public opinion. That those 'guilty' men and women did stand for re-election and were re-elected is probably the most unfortunate result of the what passes for democracy in this country. Are we not still awaiting the result of investigations into the behaviour of the Member for Rotherham, a decision thereon that appears to be taking an inordinate amount of time? Do we not have in the House of Commons a Secretary of State, who it is reported, is about to be prosecuted for perverting the course of justice?

And members of the House of Commons are 'Honourable'? With some more 'Right' than others?

We are being led up the garden path, aren't we (Francis) Maude?

Actually, it is not just Francis, but all politicians and the media. We are continually bombarded with government propaganda - which is passed off as 'news' - and the majority of the public sit in front of their television sets, or read their 'newspapers' - and swallow it, hook line and sinker.

Politics Home informs us that Cameron has received a major boost in his poll ratings - a piece of propaganda which Richard North, EU Referendum, debunks most satisfactorily. As I commented on his blog, it continually amazes me that anyone can actually believe that any of them are doing a good job. That same source (Politics Home) also informs us that the government plans to take on the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Once again Richard North, EU Referendumsteps in to debunk that piece of news too, revealing it to be exactly what it is - just 'spin', or propaganda.

In the Daily Telegraph we have Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society, writing on the subject of giving to charity. Two immediate observations: Nepotism does not exist in political parties? Just what is it about those in politics who use the diminutive form of 'Nicholas' that they appear to be idiots? My apologies, I digress yet again! This article is yet another attempt by government to 'nudge' us to a certain pattern of behaviour - one could almost accuse them of an attempt to 'hurd us like cattle'. We are told that it is not the government's role to tell people what they should do (hell Nick, just where have you been for the last few years?) but are then informed that companies must encourage employees to volunteer. (my emphasis) Why should individuals be 'encouraged' (for encouraged' read 'coerced') to contribute money to 'charities' to which they have already contributed by money previously extracted from them by force? For example, why should people voluntarily support Friends of the Earth or the World Wildlife Fund? In the case of the latter they received £147million - out of a total of £194million - in fees and grants, confirmed in their Annual Accounts for 2010. Part of that £147million came from the EU, money which appears to have been spent lobbying the EU to maintain EU policies.

We are also informed in the Daily Telegraph that Cameron is about to do yet another 'U' turn and ditch his promise to overturn Labour's ban on foxhunting. Yet Politics Home announces that Agriculture Minister, Jim Paice, has 'slammed' the existing law on foxhunting - follow the Independent link. Also from the Daily Telegraph we are informed that some ministers have been accused of 'total hyprocrasy' (nothing new there, then) for campaigning against cuts in their constituencies. So we have the ludicrous situation whereby those ministers can argue against policies that, should they be debated in the Commons, they would have to follow convention and support the government, of which they are members, if they wished to retain their ministerial positions - which further illustrates yet again that the question of whom MPs are elected to represent is, once again, most pertinent.

That not one of the newspapers mentioned above highlights the criticisms that Richard North and I both raise is most noticeable, which confirms my assertion that Maude is truly leading us up the garden path.

Sorry, I complained first.....

Or at least, I think I did. I notice from Politics Home that Gary Streeter, the  Conservative chairman of the all-party Christians in Parliament group, has jumped on my bandwagon complaining that Rowan Williams would be on on safer ground if he stuck to moral and spiritual issues; and that he would be wise to leave the politics to politicians and focus on providing spiritual leadership. I would be only too happy to second Streeter's entreaty, but he includes the wish for politics to be left to politicians - and just look at the mess that that idea has gotten the country into! 

Like his political colleagues Gary Streeter needs to be educated into the benefits of 'Referism' and Direct Democracy. The introduction of both will, needless to say, involve what might be termed 'mass redundancies' and 'pay cuts', however Gary Street can compliment himself that, as a result of his suggestion, he has 'moved up' both lists being compiled.

Happy Christmas, Mr. Streeter!

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Bah, Humbug - So it's Christmas.......

The one day of the year when you thought you would escape 'politics' is today, Christmas Day - yet we find the subject being 'rammed down our throats' in the form of religious sermons by church leaders. It is also appreciated that today we are taught, nay instructed, to show peace and goodwill to all men - well, when they show a tad of peace and goodwill, rather than political spin, towards me I may well reciprocate. If ever a man needed 'bearding' for his comments it surely is Dr. Rowan Williams!

The BBC reports that Rowan Williams used his 'sermon' to question whether the 'richest people' are sharing their burden, whilst suggesting if there was 'confidence' that it was being fairly shared. In a further article on Rowan Williams' 'sermon' the BBC relates that he stated that there existed 'broken bonds and abused trust'. Perhaps Rowan Williams needs to direct his ire at those who have 'broken bonds and abused trust'? We can but hope that he was referring to those who have practiced social engineering on our society, those who have abused the trust placed in them by their venal misuse of public money? Perhaps Rowan Williams, in quoting from the book of Common Prayer, thus:
"If ye shall perceive your offences to be such as are not only against God but also against your neighbours; then ye shall reconcile yourselves unto them; being ready to make restitution."
was directing his quotation at the guilty? Whether the guilty will recognize the advice being offered,  is of course another matter - and I will not be holding my breath for a miracle, especially today of all days.

Attempting to ascertain exactly how much Rowan Williams earns has proved a tad difficult, however this article states it is £70,000 pa - as it has also been a tad difficult to ascertain whether Lambeth Palace is a 'grace & favour' residence. If both are correct, perhaps Rowan Williams would volunteer a 'pay-cut' and/or pay a 'market rent'?

It might be an idea if politicians did not do 'God' and those 'representatives' of God did not do politics?

Just saying...........

Afterthought: As stated in the comments, do all those named Rowan have to try to be comedians?

Saturday, 24 December 2011


Whilst loading music onto my laptop (not classical, but pop music of my era) with a view to creating some cds for use in the car, I came across what I think is the best song ever to have won the Eurovision song contest. The event in 1964 was hosted by Denmark, where the winner "Non ho l'eta", was sung by a sixteen year old, Gigliola Cinquetti. It should be pointed out that in those days the voting system was totally different to that used today - only three countries could be awarded votes using the scale of 1, 3 and 5 points. 

From Wikipedia we learn:
"The immediate response of the Koncertsal audience to the Italian entry was markedly enthusiastic and prolonged and, most unusually for a contest performance, after leaving the stage Gigliola Cinquetti was allowed to return to take a second bow. Her performance was given an unscheduled repeat on British television the following afternoon. In the event, she won the most crushing victory in the history of the contest, with a score almost three times that of her nearest rival, a feat extremely unlikely ever to be bested under the post-1974 scoring system."
That recall - and the action by the BBC - has never, to my knowledge, been repeated. Incidentally, the second placed country was the United Kingdom, Matt Munro, with "I love the little things" which garnered 17 votes.

Anyway, see what you think.


A little Christmas cheer from 'aloft'

Courtesy of Katabasis:

Christmas Greetings 2011

"One of the nice things about Christmas is you can make people forget the past with a present."

To all followers of this blog and those bloggers of like mind, may I wish you a very happy Christmas and as prosperous a New Year as will be allowed you by our political elite.

To said political elite I also send Seasons Greetings, with the added caution that they should remember their day has yet to come; one when the people will, in the words of Maximus Decimus Meridius, unleash hell.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Separating the 'wheat' from the 'chaff'

The point is often made by those commenting on blogs that the internet is the only source for 'real news, ie: 'news without spin'.

No matter where you look at sites that profess to provide 'news' - Politics Home, Conservative Home, Labour List, Liberal Democrat Voice, coupled with all those 'independent' commentators - all they do is provide 'news' from within the 'political Westminster bubble', whilst linking to each other in that 'bubble'.

Whilst in no way decrying the efforts of EU Referendum, Your Freedom and Ours, IanPJ on Politics - and many, many others all of whom are not members of the  MSM - where is the media source of unadulterated, opinion free, news and comment? (Just the facts, ma'am, just the facts) Does not a 'responsible' media have a duty to inform and question that which politicians would have us believe? Do not 'media moguls' have a duty to their readership to provide just that? Do not what are 'information sites', albeit with political affiliation, not have that same duty? Politics Home is supposed to be, so they would have readers believe, 'without 'political affiliation' yet I notice that whilst  links to EU Referendum are 'legion' - when he questions political venality, principles, behaviour; such posts seem to be studiously 'ignored' by that website.

People, beware - the internet, per se, is not an impartial source of news. As with the MSM, it is still necessary to employ the use of a filter - which begs the question why, in a free society which is supposed to be a democracy, this should be necessary. Or am I being naive? (don't answer that!)

Just saying..........................

Celebrating Christmas - Digital Style

From someone I know in Wales - no, not IPJ!*


*The blameless must so remain - it is Christmas!

A 'fog' of news?

Richard North, EU Referendum, posts on one example wherein is shown that our 'news services' are totally incompetent and thereby worthless. But this is but the latest example of the lack of real journalism from which we in this country, suffer.

Gawain Towler, England Expects, posts on some 'research' carried out by the BBC in which it is intimated that Hannan (and, by intimation, Farage) may not be a household name in British politics.

Neil O'Brien, writing in the Daily Telegraph, asks the question why has the proportion of households where no-one has ever worked, doubled; yet nowhere does he bother to go further and ask for the root causes of this fact. Perhaps it is beyond the intellectual capability of this man to look at the emasculation of the education system that has taken place; the 'social-engineering' that has taken place? This man is head of a 'think-tank'? Methinks the first word is totally misplaced!

How often have we been bombarded about Cameron's 'phantom veto on a phantom treaty'? "There was no draft treaty before the European Council, just a set of conclusions..." So who, exactly, is the "Straw Man" here.........?

That Orwell's 'Big Brother' has arrived is beyond doubt - it has arrived through a combination of political 'verbal dexterity' and a compliant MSM (in the politician's pocket, or in the case of the BBC - the EU) who are not in the 'news/comment' business - rather the 'parrot' business.

Just saying...................

Oh, the hyprocrisy (Falkland Islands 'matter', but the UK......?

So David Cameron has sent his 'Christmas Message' to the Falkland Islanders; a news item covered by the Mail, Telegraph and Guardian. From the No10 website we read the actual message, part of which states:
"So let me be absolutely clear. We will always maintain our commitment to you on any question of sovereignty. Your right to self-determination is the cornerstone of our policy. We will never negotiate on the sovereignty of the Falkland Islands unless you, the Falkland Islanders, so wish. No democracy could ever do otherwise."
So the right to self-determination of the Falkland Islanders trumps the right to self-determination of the people of his own country? This is a man who will never negotiate on the sovereignty of the Falkland Islanders, yet will do so on behalf of the people of the United Kingdom? This is the man who would give the Falkland Islanders a say on any change to their sovereignty, but not those in his own country?

It would indeed be a lovely Christmas present were just one MP (any of the 'eurosceptic' Tories listening?) to 'pick-up' the hypocrisy of his statement - likewise just one 'journalist' 'copy 'n paste merchant' of the MSM.

That David Cameron is a two-faced 'man of questionable parentage' is now plain for all to see!

No true democracy would countenance having a politician such as Cameron, MilibandE, Clegg - and about 647 others...............

Now, where did I put that 'Uzi' I got on my last trip to Tel Aviv.................

Thursday, 22 December 2011

A 'coloured' question

Two items on the internet caught my attention this evening; one a report from Gates of Vienna and the other from the Metro. The former contains an unsubstantiated report of an attack by 'coloured' youths on Tommy Robinson who is a prominent member of the English Defense League (EDL). The second is about Alan Hansen's 'unreserved apology' for having used the word 'coloured' when describing the ethnicity of some players in English football.

The report of the attack on Tommy Robinson makes some statements that are 'questionable'; it refers to 'Asians' and 'Pakistanis' yet there is no proof that this is so. That this 'attack' seems not have made it into the media (nowt on Google) does not mean that it did not take place - yet it seems odd that Tommy Robinson only has to give a statement about 'race' or 'Islamism' and the media are swarming round him like bees round the proverbial honeypot. Whether the 'story' is true can easily be proved by a picture of this man showing his 'injuries'. That is not to say I do not believe that this 'attack' took place - purely that I am 'reserving judgement' on the truth of what occurred.

The second article deals with another aspect of the 'race' problem and Hansen's use of the word 'coloured' - which begs the question of why the 'uproar' over Hansen's use of the word - is 'black' not a colour? Would it have caused the same 'uproar' had Hansen used the word 'black' because do we not have a registered charity in this country that uses that same word? Does not the word 'black' appear on various forms asking for one's ethnicity as in the classification of 'Black Afro-Carribean'? Do we not discuss the question of 'Black and Ethnic Minorities' (BME)? Do we not refer to differences in numerous matters as being one of 'black and white'? And the difference is?

It is a well-known fact that amongst our black immigrants they refer to the indigenous white inhabitants of the UK as 'Whitey' or 'Honky' - these are but generic terms, or 'slang'. Where is the difference in the use of those terms compared to the French referring to we English as 'Les Rosbifs'? From Wikipedia we learn that it is an insult to the English because of their association with the dish. At the same time do we English not refer to the French people as 'Frogs'? I may well be mistaken, but I know of no 'charity' in existence fighting for either we English, or the French, in order to change public perception.

That our society has now reached a state in which an 'uncontroversial' comment, or term, has been seized upon by those with a 'special interest', forcing a 'grovelling apology' from the person making the remark, does not say a lot for said society nor for the individual concerned.

Whilst it is, I believe, generally accepted that it is impossible to 'force integrate' different cultures - which is exactly what our political elite have done - without tensions arising, it is also arguable that this 'problem' has been exacerbated by, dare one say, the 'Human Rights' and 'PC' brigades - but hey, everyone has to make a living................

Just saying............

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Apparently there are certain matters which are an affront to the principles of openness which underpin a modern democracy.

According to Nick Clegg.

I would refer readers to this post from Helen, Your Freedom and Ours, one to which Richard North, EU Referendum, adds a very short, but pertinent comment. It is a subject on which I have posted previously, here, here and here.

As Helen so rightly posts:
"We shall see what those much-praised, much-vaunted Tory eurosceptics will do. HMG is unhappy with the idea of a establishing "a Committee of Inquiry into the economic implications for the United Kingdom of membership of the European Union". Who will rebel and say that it is, in fact, a very good idea, indeed?"
That this requires an MP to further the process by proposing a debate will indeed be the question, coupled of course with how much 'whipping' might negate any such intention? No doubt Lord Pearson's proposal will be answered with the 'time-honoured' response that the benefits are so obvious that no such debate need take place. With all three parties wedded to membership of the European Union, contrary to reported public opinion, coupled with which one has to remember that said MPs have 'careers', when this reaches the Commons the response will be all too predictable!

And we do not live under a system of 'democratised dictatorship'?

Just saying................

The 'cost' of our political system

No, not the 'direct' cost of salaries, buildings etc, etc; but the 'hidden' costs of the time spent by our politicians  'maneouvering' for position within the hierarchy of the Coalition, about the time spent ensuring that each party gains some element of 'public approval' among their respective supporters; and in so doing David Cameron is able to ensure that the Coalition does not 'collapse' before its expiry date thus maintaining his own individual position. Daniel Korski has a post on the Coffee House about the apparent 'rise' in the power wielded by Nick Clegg at the expense of William Hague, one that is a prime illustration of the foregoing.

Does it really matter, other than for 'presentational' reasons, who invited German foreign minister Guido Westerwelle to Britain on a 'we still love you' visit yesterday, when no doubt Westerwelle had been urged by van Rompuy and Barroso to accept on the basis it provided them with 'PR' that they could then use to show that the EU really wanted the UK to remain a full and active member? That is but one example of the 'smoke and mirrors' that affects our politics. Is William Hague going to kick up a fuss' when, no doubt, Cameron has informed him that some room must be given to Clegg to bolster his position as Leader of the Libdems in order to quell any 'rebellion' among LibDem MPs and party members, thus preserving the life of the Coalition? More 'smoke and mirrors'. Who is better qualified to 'talk' to those in Brussels than someone who has worked there and no doubt knows those that matter, while maintaining the Coalition 'line' that we intend to remain a member? More 'smoke and mirrors'.

That our MPs, in putting themselves forward - or 'having themselves put forward' - for election to Westminster to represent their constituents - and supposedly to serve those constituents - is a charade. They do so as it is the first rung on a career - one in which power and personal wealth can be the ultimate prize, not for any reasons of 'serving' the public. It is only necessary to witness their voting records to see MP after MP trooping through the lobbies in support of their 'party line' to see that this is true. Once elected they form a self-serving, self-preservation, clique - witness how they are now insisting that control of their expenses system should revert to them; witness how the recall of any MP is dependent on a committee of their peers being the deciding factor; witness how those in the expenses scandal are able to get re-elected, regardless of their perceived wrong-doings, because they are the only choice provided for the tribalist voter to support. More 'smoke and mirrors'.

Advancement for an MP is solely at the patronage of their party's leader who, when his party's image becomes stagnant, then performs a reshuffle of his 'appointees' with the aim of 'refreshing' the public perception of his/her government (or shadow government) - resulting in a re-arrangement of the occupants of the deckchairs on the Titanic; and for what purpose where any benefit to the country is concerned? What does, for example, the former occupant of one department, reassigned to another, bring to his/her new position, other than a desire to cement his/her progress up their career ladder?

Politicians make much of the need for 'transparency', or 'openness', from them, but are guilty of exactly the opposite. A recent example occurred in a speech Nick Clegg gave to Demos; and upon which Norman Tebbit comments. In his speech Clegg complains that the Lords, as currently constituted, is an affront to the principles of openness which underpin a modern democracy. That statement may well be true, but does not the same accusation also apply to those in the Commons? Can it not be said that the elected Commons with a veneer covering venality and self-interest can surely no longer serve as a chamber which legislates on behalf of the people? Clegg mentions 'dodgy' lobbyists corrupts politics - methinks that politics and our politicians need no help where corruption is concerned. If Clegg believes that individuals need the capabilities and opportunities to chart their own course through life, it has to be asked of Clegg - and his fellow politicians of all parties - why politicians spend so much of their time ensuring that we lead 'ordered' lives in accordance with the 'doctrines' that he and the other two parties impose on us?

For far too long our country has been pulled from 'pillar to post' due entirely to 'political doctrine' - illustrated by party A whilst in government creating a set of laws, then being thrown out of office, with party B entering office and promptly repealing said laws and introducing their own, based on a different 'doctrine'. Does the country benefit from this process? No! Who benefits from this process? The politicians! Suppose there was an alternative form of democracy, one in which no change to our constitution could be made without the approval of the electorate; no wars could begin without our approval; no agreements could be signed as a member of some shadowy world organisation without the approval of the electorate? Suppose there was an alternative form of democracy, both national and local, whereby political decisions could be halted by the electorate having the ability to say "No way, José"? (Sorry Barroso!) Suppose a system of democracy existed whereby politicians, because of the veto that the people have, were no more than 'managers' of the wishes of the people? Suppose an example could be shown whereby 'managers' of their country's destiny had been in office, on a part-time basis, for more than 20 years? Just suppose....

Between Christmas and the New Year I intend returning to the 'Constitution' question (having little else to do - sad is me, but I digress) and by way of an introduction to that post I thought a few general observations on the system of democracy under which we presently live might be in order, hence the above.

A new website has been set up ( with a view to allow people to discuss all aspects of this subject (moderation will be employed purely to negate trolls, bad language, etc) and it is not intended primarily for those in the United Kingdom. Presently a 'holding page' is visible, however it is hoped to have this new website 'working' by 2nd January 2012 and confirmation of that will appear on this blog.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Loss of power

From  John Redwood:
"When it came to his announcement, the Chairman of the Treasury Committee and others asked about how far the UK is now free to do as it wishes on banking regulation. The Chancellor explained that the EU was now considering the Vickers Report with a view to seeing how much the UK can do without infringing the EU’s growing mastery of financial regulation. There are queries about whether the UK is any longer able to impose its own capital requirements on banks, one of the three main recommendations of the Report." (My emphasis)
Parliament maintains that it is 'sovereign', in other words having supreme, independent authority which must, surely, encapsulate the ability to decide, unhindered, the financial measures - or come to that any measure, not just financial - that it considers necessary for the good of the country. That it has to seek the approval for measures it wishes to take - and accepts measures imposed upon it, measures that cannot be altered one iota - from another body means, I would suggest, that it has suffered a 'significant' loss of power.

Perhaps our political elite need to amend the European Union Bill erasing the word 'significant' when talking about 'loss of power' and substituting one that more accurately reflects what is meant.

Just saying......................

Monday, 19 December 2011

EU Ministers statement on IMF resources

Via 'spiked' and here, this has just been published:
"EU Finance Ministers statement on IMF resources
19 December 2011
EU Member States support a substantial increase in the IMF's resources. These resources will enhance the IMF's capacity to fulfill its systemic responsibilities in support of its global membership, which is especially important given the ongoing economic slowdown and financial market tensions. The IMF’s involvement will be based on normal IMF conditionality.
The EU, and in particular Euro area Member States are fully aware of their special responsibility in the current circumstances. Therefore, on 9 December, euro area Member States have committed to enhanced governance to foster fiscal discipline and deeper integration in the internal market as well as stronger growth, enhanced competitiveness and social cohesion.
Ministers confirmed today that, as part of a broader international effort to improve the adequacy of IMF resources, euro area Member States will provide EUR 150 billion of additional resources through bilateral loans to the Fund's General Resources Account.Burden-sharing among euro area Member States will be based on quota shares resulting from the 2010 quota reform.
The Czech Republic, Denmark, Poland, and Sweden indicated their willingness to take part in the process of reinforcing IMF resources. The United Kingdom has indicated that it will define its contribution early in the new year in the framework of the G20.
For some Member States, commitments will be subject to parliamentary approval.
The EU will also work expeditiously to implement in full the 2010 quota and governance reform of the IMF.
The EU would welcome G20 members and other financially strong IMF members to support the efforts to safeguard global financial stability by contributing to the increase in IMF resources so as to fill global financing gaps." (my emphasis)
It is hoped readers will forgive what may appear to be xenophobia, or nationalism, but:

So the leaders of some European countries, having screwed up their continent economically, now ask the world to save them. Forgive me, but didn't the leaders of some European countries screw up their continent militarily, about 70+ years ago, for the same empirical aims? So the UK has to join with others to save them - again? To paraphrase: when will they ever learn? More importantly - and perhaps selfishly - when will our politicians learn?

I stand to be corrected, however it appears there are only three 'avenues' by which the eurozone can be 'saved'. One is through the EFSF, which is an avenue not being used this time; the European Central Bank (ECB), which doesn't have the required funds; or the IMF, which providing it can raise the funds, would have. Whether Britain would contribute, via the G20, is the intriguing question and it seems to me that Cameron and Osborne, who have been stating that survival of the eurozone is paramount to our country's well-being, may well use this 'avenue of last resort' in order to appear to be 'good Europeans', thus 'saving face' following their 'belligerence' during 'Events Bruxelles' of 8/9th December - and thus 'getting their feet back under the table'.*

We shall see what transpires.................**

* Of course, if we had 'Referism' and 'Direct Democracy' any payment by our country to another would not be the decision of politicians!

** If I'm proved wrong in my belief that we eventually do contribute via the IMF, then needless to say I shall don sackcloth and ashes, pleading many 'mea culpas' in the process.


Opening up a pro-eu(er)

Or, perhaps, reading the 'phile' of a pro-eu(er) - in one particular case. My attention is drawn to two articles that have appeared today; one in the Times (£), the other on the website of Public Service Europe, both of which contain 'irregularities'.

In the first, entry of which I have not due to the paywall, it is understood that Roland Rudd who is chairman of Business for New Europe - and who in the past was one of those who believed that this country should have joined the euro at its inception - argues that should Britain leave the EU and then forge a membership similar to that of Norway it too would be the subject of 'fax-machine diplomacy. Perhaps Rudd should be directed to posts by Richard North, here and here.  

Digressing slightly it seems that the likes of Hannan and Farage, amongst others, are 'fixated' with the idea that the only alternative available, should Britain exit the European Union, is membership of the European Economic Area (EEA). As an alternative, however, might not an arrangement such as the Swiss have - of bilateral agreements -not be better? Even though such negotiations may take time to complete, Britain's position as a market, an economy and bearing in mind the potential to the EU of any subsequently agreed 'contributions' must carry a great deal of weight.

Whilst on the subject of Norway I believe it correct to say that only just over 3.5% of Norwegians are unemployed, inflation is circa 2.5% cent and debt /deficit levels are almost the only ones in Europe that come anywhere near the Maastricht criteria, coupled with the facts that Norway export more per capita to the EU from outside that organisation than Britain does from inside, whist their trade with the EU is in surplus, whereas ours is in deficit.

Time dictates that I move on to "Nucleus" (building influence through Europe) and the article written by a Director, one Matthew Lewis, linked to above. Where to start? In fact there are so many 'irregularities' in this piece, one written by someone who appears to belong in a kindergarten, that I can't be bothered to even start - go read it for yourselves! Suffice to say, I will pick-up on one statement he makes, namely "We cannot operate as a Switzerland or a Norway, it is not in our nature" as it immediately begs the questions of why and why not? Bearing in mind the statistics quoted above, if it is not in our nature, following his 'reasoning'(?) then perhaps it would be to our own good as a nation that we changed our nature. That we have been for ages a 'trading nation' and have survived as such seems to have escaped him, something he would know had his education been better than it obviously was. Lewis' statement that "we cannot operate as a Switzerland...." illustrates that this is yet another 'robot' imprisoned in the 'current political bubble' because it is obvious that in making that statement it has not crossed his mind to think about our system of democracy. That Lewis writes in the vein he does is not surprising as he is a committed 'euro-realist'. Digressing slightly again, as their 'About' section is woefully short of information I have emailed them to ask how long they have been in existence, whether it is long enough that they have annual accounts and reports - and if so why they are not readily available on their website; if not and they have only recently been formed, from whence and from whom came their funding for start-up.

As I have said previously, if, some time in the future, there is to be a public debate on our membership of the EU it behoves politicians of all parties to tell us the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the unvarnished truth where matters EU are concerned - and the same exhortation applies to anyone else who wishes to influence public opinion!

Afterthought for Master Lewis: An alternative viewpoint from a 'business leader'.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

From nation to province

Three videos featuring a speech by Enoch Powell in 1976:

Listen to his words and then tell me the difference between the Conservative Party then - and now.

And another video, this time on immigration: 
"....politicians of all parties will say when Enoch Powell is right - we won't say that in public but we know it in private - Enoch Powell is right and it will no doubt develop as he says, but its better for us to do nothing now and let it happen, perhaps after our time, than to seize the many poisonous nettles which we would have to seize, if we were at this stage to attempt to avert the outcome; so let it go on until a third of central London, a third of Birmingham and Wolverhampton are coloured, until the civil war comes - let it go on, we won't be blamed, we'll either have gone or we'll slip out from under, somehow."

For those too young to have witnessed this man; for those who can't be bothered to learn their history; this man was vilified by the then 'political class' - and still is. When the likes of Blair, Brown, Cameron, MilibandE and Clegg are too but 'figures of history', it is those that follow who will have to deal with the aftermath of their 'beliefs'.

The only disagreement that I have with Powell was with his belief in 'parliamentary democracy' because it amounts to a 'democratised dictatorship' imposed by the leaders of our political parties - if this great man had only believed in direct democracy we would surely not be in the 'state' we are!

Osborne & Cable - 'Spinmasters Extraordinary'

From Politics Home we learn:
"Vince Cable says he and George Osborne will accept the recommendations of the Vickers Commission on banking in full, with the Government tomorrow launching a package of reforms, including separating banks' retail and investment arms.
Dr Cable told the Andrew Marr Show this morning: “I’m working together with the Chancellor on this; we’ve come to a common view, and we’re going to proceed with it. Moreover, we’re going to get on with it. The legislation is going to be completed within this Parliament. It’s got to be done; we can’t have a position where the big banks are too big to fail.”
Labour's Chuka Umunna said it was "very important" that all the recommendations were implemented, and called for Sir John Vickers to report back in a year on how the implementation was progressing. The Shadow Business Secretary also said the Government should bring forward plans to refer banks to the Competition Commission."
Odd therefore there is no mention that on 20 July 2011, the Commission adopted a legislative package to strengthen the regulation of the banking sector. The proposal replaces the current Capital Requirements Directives (2006/48 and 2006/49) with a Directive and a Regulation and constitutes another major step towards creating a sounder and safer financial system (or so they say!). The directive governs the access to deposit-taking activities while the regulation establishes the prudential requirements institutions need to respect. Neither is there any mention of this, or this, or this, or this, or this, or finally, this.

Osborne is supposedly Chancellor of the Exchequer, while Cable is supposedly Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills. Spheroids - they are no more than Office Managers implementing decisions taken by the Muscles from Brussels! Yet again we see impending EU legislation being passed off as 'action being taken' by British politicians when, in reality, that is not so.

And still there persists those who maintain that our politicians should not be introduced to their 'reserved lamp post'?

Afterthought: Perhaps when we as a nation do regain our independence, assuming he is still alive we could hire the Muscles from Brussels to wipe out the Muscles from Brussels? Just a thought..........