Friday, 31 July 2009

Huhne The Hoon

The case of Gary McKinnon has evoked much comment and rightly so in my opinion, although that point is not the subject of this post.

Chris Huhne, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesperson, has jumped on the 'injustice' bandwagon and called for a 'level playing field'.

This from the man who had this to say on the European Arrest Warrant, which introduces anything but a 'level playing field'.

Now, on the basic point that if it is acceptable for a British citizen to be removed from this country and tried in another EU country, then logically so must it be right for Gary McKinnon to be removed from this country and tried in the US.

However one suspects that Huhne, like all politicians, sees the General election looming on the horizon and senses the opportunity for a little self-promotion with a view to it helping him retain his seat and thus his position at the trough!

Black, Kettle & Pot

An article in the Daily Telegraph, authored by Jeremy Warner, claims that bankers are getting away with murder and contains the following words:

".....bankers are behaving as if nothing of any significance has changed at all."

Er...........they may be, but by comparison, it is the bloody politicians who are behaving as if nothing of any significance has changed at all*!

* With a few - in fact a very few - exceptions!

Winnick Bill For Assisted Suicide

A Labour Member of Parliament is to launch a Bill to legalise assisted suicide in the United Kingdom, according to the Daily Telegraph.

So, if any Labour minister - prime or otherwise - or any politician, who does not believe in direct dcemocracy, wishes to be assisted in doing the decent thing, I am only too willing to help by providing a revolver, one bullet and a short, written & illustrated, easy to understand guide - thus negating any possibility of failure, something most politicians appear to suffer from!

The Gender And Opportunities Gap

Jill Kirby, writing in today's Daily Telegraph, lays into the Women and Work Commission and their deputy chairman, Baroness Prosser.

The soundbite to the article is that women are being told to avoid 'feminine' jobs - but what they want is to stop being lectured.

No Jill, in the interests of equality, what we all want - regardless of gender - is to stop being lectured by politicians, who don't have one bloody brain cell between them it seems, with the view that we, the members of the public, must all conform to their - the politician's - idea of the perfect person.

The Women and Work Commission is part of the Government Equalities Office - yet another quango and whose accounts can be found here - the latter being headed by Harriet Harman, needless to add.

In respect of the deputy chairman - tut, tut, not deputy chairperson./chairlady or just chair? - of the Women and Work Commission, there is only, really, one thing to say:

Prosser, you're a Tosser!

£250 To Park At Work?

The report in the Daily Telegraph that companies with more than 10 parking places would have to pay £250 for each space initially made me check the diary to ensure today was not 1st April.

Of the councils reported to be 'interested', locally it is not surprising to see Oxford listed, this council being run by Greens and Liberal Democrats.

Needless to say the environmenalists are jumping on this bandwagon with Richard Hebditch, Campaign for Better Transport, to the fore who is quoted as saying that the levy would raise money to invest in transport improvements and also that it had the added benefit of tackling unnecessary commuter journeys, one of the main causes of congestion.

Firstly, Mr Hebditch, any additional taxes raised will no doubt, especially if the present government remains in office, go to fund this type of nonsense, regardless of what a DfT spokesman may say. Secondly, what is a journey to work by car if not a necessary commuter journey?

Lastly, what about stores such as Tesco and their like, where they may well have 20/30/40 employees all coming to work by car, as they work shifts? And companies are going to absorb these additional 'costs'?

The mind boggles that anyone with a brain could even begin to think such a scheme worthwhile, coupled with anyone or any body (Hebditch and Oxford City Council) could even welcome it.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Face Mask Confusion?

Two letters in today's Daily Telegraph struck a chord and sure enough a little detective work has paid off.

The two letters in question are those from Andy Burnham and Jon Newman. From both, two extracts:

Andy Burnham:

"All ministers take care to base any public statements on the advice of the Chief Medical Officer...."

Jon Newman, quoting Sir Liam Donaldson, Chief Medical Officer:

"The scientific advice on face masks is that they are of very little value. They get moist, which enhances the virus. And because the virus is so small it can go through the pores. They also give a false sense of security."

Then from the BBC we get a report of a public statement, in the Commons, from Andy Burnham that 226m face masks have been ordered!


With acknowledgements to both Dick Puddlecote and Trixie.

A Straight View Of Swine Flu

Godfrey Bloom, noted for his 'no-nonsense, plain English', view on any subject has spoken.

Yet another example where the UK Independence Party tells it like it is!

H/T: Trixie (bless her)

Whether The Weather..........

Much has been written in the media on the subject of the Met Office forecast for this years summer.

Over at EU Referendum, Richard North has commented with his usual forensic and thereby, incisive, ability.

However it is worth also considering the article in the Daily Telegraph, written by Philip Eden who is the Daily Telegraph's weather expert and is also vice-president of the Royal Meteorological Society.

This inability to predict weather, which as Philip Eden explains is dependent on so many 'inter-locking' factors, must also be applicable to the 'science' of climate change. As Richard North says:

"Yet, we have a multi-billion pound climate change industry, all based on forecasts with have no basis in reality, and which – over the period of their generation – have been shown to be consistently wrong."

This view is echoed by Philip Eden when he, in turn, makes the point:

"The change happened in 2005 when a string of self-styled long-range forecasters – in truth a lunatic fringe of self-publicists – started issuing their own warnings of severe winters and blistering summers."

When you get a lunatic fringe of self-publicists creating a multi-billion pound industry it can only lead to chaos and a waste of public money. Lets face it, we have just witnessed such a catastrophe happening, in the last 12 years, with the present Labour government.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Cameron Welcomes Possibility Of Election Debates

So David Cameron has been quick of the mark to welcome the hint that Gordon Brown may be changing his mind about holding televised debates, come the General Election.

But why should this be limited to Cameron vs Brown? The LibDems will, no doubt, be vociferous in demanding that Clegg be included.

What would really make such a 'Leader's Debate' interesting were if the Leader of the party who polled the second highest number of votes in the European elections - and whose party is fast becoming the fourth major party in British politics - were to be included.

We might then get some 'commonsense' injected!

Update: So it ain't going to happen. In an example of 'joined-up' government, Downing Street has just 'hit the suggestion on the head'!

Pointing Out The Bloody Obvious

Burning Our Money has a post discussing the viability of the Met Office when considering their costs and forecasts.

Not only that, BOM also neatly points out the illogicality of the 'industry' that has been built by the global warming/climate change fraternity.

And the sad thing is, Labour, Lib Dem or Conservative government - courtesy of the EU - will still continue to pour money into this 'fiction'.

Quote Of The Week

The heading to a post by EU Referendum, taken from an article by Simon Heffer writing in today's Daily Telegraph.

To which, from the same article, I would add:

"The fear that besets the Conservative Party, of being seen to favour what we used to call the party's core vote. I say "used to" advisedly, for hundreds of thousands of them are predisposed to vote Ukip if a candidate is available: and in most places at the next general election one will be."

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

All This For £25 A Day

First we had the Daily Telegraph front page print edition 'exclusive', only for it to be 'shot down in flames' by this.

Then Guido somehow managed to get his 'fawkes' crossed, as later, he posted this, the original post having been re-written and acknowledged, as such, at the end.

That was followed by who had this to say, followed by this, announcing the intervention of Speaker Bercow.

All that was one hell of a lot of posting for just £25!

On a serious note though, Jim Pickard's point, about Martin not making it plain the overnight allowance would not require receipts, is well made. Likewise the last paragraph of his post!

Whitehall Departments 'Twittering'

Leaving aside one of the comments on a post I made, that I should lobby my local district council for a name change from Witney to Twitney - so that I could rename my blog Twitterings From Twitney - it appears our 'government' wish to waste yet more of our money.

For the four departments who took part in this, it is obvious that they have failed on all counts - so P45s all round then?

Obviously Time For A Rant(zen)

So, just like a woman, finally she makes her mind up!

The obvious question is how the BBC, come the General election, will cover her campaign. In Norwich North they did not exhibit any accepted sense of fairness, as this shows.

As Frankie says.........*

*Oh, come one - you didn't think I would give her a plug for this, surely?

Afterthought: I suppose you could say she is in the 'van' (as in Luton - for heaven's sake, do keep up!)

Monday, 27 July 2009

The Fair Sex

As tis the 'silly season' I thought I might re-air something which appeared a few years ago and, for those who have not seen it, is still amusing. It is a small piece that Mary Archer wrote for what was a Rag Week magazine I believe.

Element: Woman

Symbol: Wo

Discoverer: Adam

Atomic Mass: Accepted as 55kg but known to vary from 45kg to 225kg

Occurrence: Found in large quantities in urban areas, with trace elements in outlying areas

Physical Properties: Boils at absolutely nothing, freezes for no apparent reason, melts if given special treatment, bitter if used incorrectly

Chemical Properties: Affinity to Gold, Silver, Platinum and all precious stones. The most powerful money reducing agent known to man

Common Use: Highly ornamental, especially in sports cars. Can be a very effective cleaning agent

Hazards: Highly dangerous except in experienced hands. Illegal to possess more than one, although several can be maintained at different locations as long as specimens do not come into direct contact with each other

Hammond Foresees A Fudge

Philip Hammond, Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, is prophesying a fudge as the end result of Darling's talks with the bankers.

So Philip, a bit like your party's 'fudge' over Britain's membership of the European Union and your party's promise of a referendum on the Treaty of Lisbon?

To use Philip's own words, almost - What the Conservative Party needs to do is send a very clear and unambiguous message to the electorate.

Answer to The Royal Question

It will be recalled that when visiting the London School of Economics (LSE), last November, the Queen asked "Why did nobody notice it?", in relation to the financial crisis. It transpires that her question has been answered in a letter, sent by Tim Besley, professor at the LSE and a member of the Bank of England's monetary policy committee, and Prof. Peter Hennessy, a political historian.

In the print edition of the Daily Telegraph (the only link I can find is this) it is reported that the letter stated:

"...while it had many causes, it was principally a failure of the collective imagination of many bright understand the risks to the system, as a whole." and continues "A psycology of denial gripped the financial and political world...."

It can be argued that it would be unfair to include Gordon Brown amongst the 'many bright people', but he sure as hell can be included amongst those who had 'a psycology of denial'.

Darling Meets Banks For Talks Over Lending Levels

Alastair Darling, nominally Chancellor of the Exchequer - courtesy of Gordon Brown, is having talks with some of the major banks over the levels of lending to small businesses.

Angela Knight, Chief Executive of the British Bankers' Association (BBA) said "the banks could not lend at 0.5% because they had to pay much more than that for the funds they themselves borrowed in the wholesale money markets." adding "and that some business plans did not stand up to scrutiny.."

How ironic it is that the Government's business plan does not stand up to scrutiny - as demonstrated on many occasions by Burning Our Money, of which this is but one example.
Open Europe Blog has a post on the effect of the European Working Time Directive and its effect on doctor's hours of work.

"Over the weekend John Black, President of the Royal College of Surgeons, called for the Government to have the courage to "step in and suspend" EU rules which will bring doctors' hours down to 48 a week from Saturday.

Matt Jameson Evans, chair of campaign group RemedyUK, said: "We already know most doctors are against EWTD [European Working Time Directive], we just need the leadership to do the right thing here."

Er....if they are talking about the 'Government' in Westminster, surely the two individuals in question would know that (a) Westminster is not our true 'Government' and (b) that as a result Westminster cannot 'step in and suspend' EU rules.

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Social Services 'A Law Unto Themselves'?

This story seemed to get much attention, although not too sure about this story as it was before I began blogging.

Running through both reports is the point that Social Services would appear to be a 'law unto themselves'. More importantly, besides wishing to be a 'law unto themselves', it would also seem they have no regard for the law and its processes, as the following illustrates.

A report in the print edition of the Sunday Telegraph (unfortunately no link appears available in the on-line edition) concerns a father of four who has been reunited with his family after being forced out of his own home by social workers over allegations of sexual abuse.

He remained barred from living with his wife and family, despite a jury acquitting him on 15 charges of abusing his eldest daughter. Derbyshire social services refused to accept the not guilty verdict of the criminal trial. (my emphasis)

They decided instead to take the case to a family court, where there is a lesser burden of proof. On Friday, however, a family court judge found that none of the allegations against the father - who was in fact a care worker - had been proved.

Sorry - 'despite a jury acquitting him' and 'Derbyshire social services refused to accept the not guilty verict of the criminal trial'? WTF do these people think they are?

Have MPs Learned Nothing?

The question is posed in view of this story, appearing in the Mail on Sunday, which reports on 'fact-finding' trips to Kiribati (South Pacific), Jamaica, Australia, Tanzania and Kenya.

The trips are reported to have been arranged by members of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) who is quoted as saying:

"......the aim of the trip is to discuss 'issues of concern' in the area, including climate change - many islands fear being submerged if sea levels rise any further......"

What Is Going On?

A story which has caught my attention in the Sunday papers is one that is featured in both the Sunday Telegraph and the Mail on Sunday. Whilst the print edition is slightly different to that on-line in both cases, the basic facts remain the same.

The burning question that arises is; have not the police got their priorities wrong? Surely common sense - okay, okay I do appreciate we are talking about the police here - dictates that if someone is defending violence against their home or family, then any 'weapon' used is used in defense and also it is worth pointing out that had the offenders not been present then they would not have got 'hurt'.

It is also appreciated that the police are only reacting to the requirements of the 'law of the land', created by a load of 'politically correct' apologists for politicians, however surely the police can decide for themselves what/who is right and what/who is wrong?

By God, do we need our 'Revolution'!

Cheek By Jowell

A pronouncement by Tessa Jowell, Minister for the Olympics - quite appropriate really as 'government' appears to be a 'bit of a game' to the present administration - again misses the point.

"We've got to address these challenges with humility because if the people of this country who've got to want to listen to us"

If this quote is correct, then Our Tess needs to be re-educated in the construction of a sentence!

Listen Our Tess, the only humility we want from you and your colleagues is an apology for the emasculation you have caused to the democracy of this country - and then you can all bugger off for eternity!

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Two Stories That Were Missed

Having been busy for the last two weeks with my friend's 're-decs', I missed two stories of interest which, courtesy of Geoffrey Lean writing in the Daily Telegraph, I am now able to comment upon.

The first concerns the 'free', supposedly, energy saving light bulbs we all get sent by the gas and electricity companies. The paper reports that hundreds of millions of the damn things have been sent - often unable to fit standard British bayonet sockets. Besides experts suspecting that the majority of these bulbs are never used, chucked out or stored, what is even more 'wasteful' is that Ofgem, the regulator that is supposed to be monitoring the scheme, cannot provide present-day information until 2012!

Also included in the scheme that Ofgem are supposed to be monitoring is advice which should help households, particularly low-income, vulnerable or elderly ones, save energy and money though such measures as insulating walls and lofts. But now it transpires that a survey by the Energy Savings Trust (another NGO like Ofgem) has found that 62 per cent of people who inquired about energy-saving offers were told they could not have them.

And the cost of all this? Of sending out unsolicited light bulbs that don't fit. of administering a scheme whereby more than half those inquiring, don't qualify, of an NGO that appears to not be doing its job?

The second story concerns the revelation, last week, that ministers at John Denham's Department of Communities and Local Government had scrapped an important energy-saving scheme without his knowledge. Geoffrey Lean asks whether that could be true and comments surely not as it would suggest that Denham was not in control of his department.

You mean Geoffrey, that Britain actually does have a Secretary of State that knows what he/she is doing, and that it is not all balls then?

This Is Getting Silly!

Reported in the Daily Telegraph (no link again!) and which seems to be a 'cut-and-paste' piece of 'journalism' of what appears in the Daily Mail, is this story of a father out shopping with his son.

Do Sainsburys not employ anyone with the half a brain cell necessary to realise that simply placing the bloody bottles on the bloody conveyor belt is not proof of intent to purchase? For that to happen it would need the under-age lad to actually 'present/hand over' the money himself!

The worrying aspect is yet again we see how a quite innocent act could well land someone with a criminal record - in this case attempting to circumvent the law by purchasing alcohol for a minor.

Welcome to Stasi-Britain - thanks to Labour!

One Rule For MPs And Another For Us

Tim Walker, writing as Mandrake,, in the Daily Telegraph today writes about the taxpayer 'coughing up' £21,706 for a Commons smoking shelter.

"It is part of a £3 million facelift that will be given to their "office" during the summer recess when the bars and eateries in the building will also be spruced up."

Frank Doran, the Labour chairman of the administration committee, is quoted as saying:

"All the smoking areas outside Parliament are very exposed and we felt it was a health and safety issue, especially in winter."

Setting to one side the small matter of MPs ensuring that they can fill their stomachs, at a reduced cost, in comfort (at our expense yet again!); what really makes me want to 'butt' them where it hurts is the fact the administration committee obviously feel it is okay for us to freeze our butts off in the winter, whilst visiting the pub, when we wish to smoke but not the MPs! As the Gurdian says in a further article:

"But following a number of complaints from smokers forced to light up in the biting wind and rain......."

£21,706 for a 'Pugin' smoking shelter? And MPs would have us believe that they are not a 'privileged class'?


Despicable Campaign?

In the print edition of today's Daily Telegraph an article by Andrew Pierce is headlined: Cameron: Labour ran despicable campaign. (Once again no link can be found on-line)

The article begins: David Cameron accused the Labour Party of waging a 'despicable dirty tricks campaign to limit the scale of the Tories' win in the Norwich North byelection. He is quoted as also saying: "I have seen a campaign in this by-election that I would describe, and I choose my words carefully, as utterly despicable."

I cannot understand why Cameron is getting all 'hot and bothered' over this. What difference is there between this 'despicable campaign' and the 'despicable campaigns' waged by Labour, Liberal Democrats and Conservatives, during the European election, when not one of the those three parties would actually discuss, or debate, the subject of Britain's membership of the European Union? It is a debate that the UK Independence Party wanted to have and one that the three main parties shied away from as, to use a 'Maggietollah' word, they are 'frit'.

To pick up on Cameron's use of the word 'despicable', is it not just as 'dispicable' for a front-line politician - and a Party Leader - to decline, three times, to partake in a public debate - issued by the Witney branch of the UK Independence Party - in his own constituency on the subject of Britain's membership of the European Union? Is it not 'despicable' to deny the constituents that you are supposed to represent the opportunity of hearing your views and your justification for holding those views?

Politicians have abused the electorate, their paymaster, over the use of the expenses and allowances systems - the last thing the electorate need is for our MPs to completely ignore us!

Friday, 24 July 2009

Policies - What Policies?

The present incumbent of the office of Foreign Secretary, one of the useless Miliband brothers, has a post on the FCO website.

"Nissan also announced that it will start producing lithium ion batteries for electric cars in Sunderland."


Not much point in producing the bloody batteries until we have plans to build the bloody cars the batteries will be used by.

Also bearing in mind the energy crisis Britain is facing through EU and your government's idiotic plans for electricity being provided by wind turbines - which you haven't got the remotest chance in hell of building in the time scale envisaged - where do we get the electricity that will be needed?

Oh and where are the plans to provide the 'charging points' that will be needed to ensure these electric cars will continue to operate?

Our Dear Leader seems to be missing the odd brain cell, or two, when he says:

"And the installation of 750 charging points in supermarkets, hospitals, car parks and universities across the North East will encourage take up of plug-in electric vehicles."

And if you want to drive somewhere outside the North East? Say a journey of 150/200 miles? And the re-charging time is.......? And the cost of re-charging is........? If one sets out in January, is the arrival time likely to be in the same year?

The words 'drawing-board', 'to' 'the' and 'back' come to mind.......

Norwich North - Alternative Viewpoint

With the results in from this by-election, whilst admittedly with a low turnout, it is worth just considering the result - hoping that the maths is correct(!):

Chloe Smith (C) 13,591 (39.54%, +6.29%)
Chris Ostrowski (Lab) 6,243 (18.16%, -26.70%)
April Pond (LD) 4,803 (13.97%, -2.22%)
Glen Tingle (UKIP) 4.068 (11.83% +9.45%)
Rupert Read (Green) 3,350 (9.74%, +7.08%)
Craig Murray (Honest) 953 (2.77%)
Robert West (BNP) 941 (2.74%)
Bill Holden (Ind) 166 (0.48%, -0.17%)
Howling Laud (Loony) 144 (0.42%)
Anne Fryatt (NOTA) 59 (0.17%)
Thomas Burridge (Libertarian) 36 (0.10%)
Peter Baggs (Ind) 23 (0.07%)

C maj 7,348 (21.37%) 16.49% swing Lab to C

Electorate 75,124; Turnout 34,377 (45.76%, -15.33%)

2005: Lab maj 5,459 (11.61%) - Turnout 47,033 (61.09%)
Gibson (Lab) 21,097 (44.86%); Tumbridge (C) 15,638 (33.25%); Whitmore
(LD) 7,616 (16.19%); Holmes (Green) 1,252 (2.66%); Youles (UKIP)
1,122 (2.39%); Holden (Ind) 308 (0.65%)

Considering that the BBC virtually ignored Ukip at the expense of the Conservative, Labour, LibDems and Greens, Ukip achieved the greatest percentage increase in their vote. Perhaps the MSM will now acknowledge that Ukip is an established political party!

Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?

The Daily Telegraph reports that Natural England has said wind farms may need to be built in national parks and areas of natural beauty.

Natural England, it will be remembered, is the government agency in charge of protecting Britain's most beautiful landscapes.

If anything demonstrates the illogicality of EU and Government policy, it must be this!

Education System All Balls

It must be an example of the low level of education in Britain today when our Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families cannot even spell - or maybe one of his staff is the guilty party?

The print edition of the Daily Telegraph reports that he sent out invitations to what he called a 'fajhita fling' being held at the Labour rooms in Morley, West Yorkshire tonight.

Balls, write out 100 times - in your best handwriting please -, 'fajita'!

Pointing Out The Bleeding Obvious

A small article in the print edition of the Daily Telegraph (no link available) reports that at the behest of Michelle Obama (trust that name to get into the act) Sarah and Gordon Brown have been showing off their vegetable garden at No 10.

The Prime Minister, who is said to be a 'big fan' of grow-your-own invited politicians from the all-party parliamentary gardening group to inspect his handiwork. Mrs. Brown was on hand to identify the produce and about 20 MPs and peers inspected peppers, strawberries, tomatoes [sic] beetroot and chard.

As I have previously said the majority of our MPs seem not to share one brain cell between them on certain matters, but one would have thought even an MP would know what a bloody strawberry looked like!

Thursday, 23 July 2009

What Is Good For The Goose..........

The print edition of this story in the Daily Telegraph differs in that the headline reads:

"Mugabe has destroyed Zimbabwe and should be toppled"

Let us take a different 'gander' at that, closer to home: Brown has destroyed Britain and should be toppled.

Well General Dannatt - fancy a pop, before the 28th August?

No Loss Of Sovereignty?

Extracted from a speech by the French Foreign Minister, Bernard Kouchner, courtesy of Open Europe.

"There are no more issues anymore which can be decided in one country......."

So all those self-important, self-opinionated and self-serving Members of Parliament who voted for ratification of the Lisbon Treaty have just made themselves redundant, it would appear.

One is supposed to forgive those who know not what they are doing, but this collection of idiots can never be forgiven, even though they don't have one brain cell between them.

I am reminded of an old verse, author unknown.

He who knows not, but knows not that he knows not, is a fool,
Shun Him

He who knows not, but knows that he knows not, is simple
Teach Him

He who knows , but knows not that he knows, is asleep
Wake Him

He who knows, and knows that he knows, is a wise man
Follow Him

Unfortunately, for Britain, there are very, very few Members of Parliament to whom the last line can be applied, whilst there are many to whom the first line can be applied!

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Well, Well, Well

This is interesting!

I suppose one could say, as housing (housey -social) and (housey -private)) is involved:


Bureaucratic 'Illogicality'

Living as I do, in Sheltered Accommodation, it is my practice to leave my front door - open to a communal corridor, together with my external windows - in order to air my flat, being a smoker.

I have received a letter from a 'property manager' of the housing association, my landlord, which reads:

Dear David,

I have recently been informed that the smell of cigarette smoke in the communal corridor of xxxxx is causing some concern. I have also on a number of occasions noticed the smell of cigarette smoke in the corridor when I have visited xxxxx.

As you live in sheltered accommodation which has communcal areas used by all tenants I would ask that you close your door when smoking in order that the fumes do not enter the communal areas of xxxxx. It is important that the comfort of all tenants is considered and therefore you will understand the need to close your door when smoking.

I trust the above is satisfactory, however should you have any concerns regarding this letter or wish to discuss it further please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours sincerely,

xxxxx xxxxx
Property Manager

Having consulted the Direct.Gov website and the Act of Parliament, I am unable to see any regulation which restricts me from smoking in my own home, whilst leaving a 'front door' open. When all is said and done, I am not actually smoking in a communal area........

Were I to shut my door, have a cigarette and then immediately open my door, what is going to it in one - the smell of cigarette smoke will permeate the corridor!

Also, having spoken to all the residents here, not one has expressed a 'concern', nor is 'bothered' by my door remaining open, neither is my smoking - and any 'aroma - a cause of 'concern'.

Without in any way being 'chauvanistic' - the property manager being a female - the phrase 'spin on this, sister', springs to mind!


The Corgi Brand Is No More

No, not the dogs - we have no wish to upset HM!

To paraphrase Michael Caine - not a lot of people know this:

On 1st April (what an auspicious date) CORGI (Council of Registered Gas Installers) was replaced by a new body, the Gas Safe Register, under the auspices of the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) - yes, them again - as the new regulatory body overseeing gas boilers, the installation and maintenance.

Nowhere on websites is there any reason given for this, however a little 'digging' has unearthed the fact the our 'government' in Brussels issued two directives: a new procurement procedure, the competitive dialogue, which was introduced for public sector contracts in EU Directive
2004/18/EC (the Directive) and another new procurement directive, (2004/17/EC) which applied to contracts in the utilities sector.

As a result of this, gas installers have been burdened with the added cost of changing van logos, business cards, stationary etc etc and for what? Why could not Britain, which had a perfectly acceptable gas regulatory installation body, continued as we were? Why do the HSE not openly state that the change is as a result of EU legislation?

kbbreview has an analysis of the problem which makes interesting reading: "The changeover came after the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) undertook a review of gas safety back in 2006. It concluded that there was a need for a clearer focus on the issue and a strong case for modernising the gas registration scheme to bring added benefits to consumers, as well as industry. At least, that's the official line. But talk to those it actually affects and you'll normally get a more sceptical view. For one thing, fitters are complaining it will cost them time and money to change over. For another, as one fitter pointed out, why fix it if it ain't broken?"

An investigation by the BBC's Watchdog programme also showed flaws in the administration of the new register.

And the cost of all this?

"The total cost of the HSE's rebranding exercise was not disclosed." - this from here. Especially when considering that by the time the time bidding had reached the "Invitation to Tender (ITT) stage, the competition narrowed to two strong bidders: CORGI, the incumbent, and Capita, the professional and support services "Top 100" company. Evaluation of the ITT bids adopted broadly the approach of the new EU's competitive dialogue." ( from the HSE's own website) the question must be asked, why create a new body, with all its inherent additional costs, when such a body already exists?

Setting to one side the additional 'red tape' costs to/for the industry - which no doubt will be passed onto the consumer - the additional costs to us, the taxpayer, funding the HSE and its work implementing this new body, the additional costs in salaries for the 'management' of the new body - its 'all a bit of a gas', is it not?

Just another thought........

Blinkered Vision

An interesting article in the Times today in respect Baron Sugar of Clapton - aka 'SurAlan' - and the Trustees 'ruling' on screening The Apprentice during an election period.

"........the trustees said that allowing the Labour peer to present The Apprentice, or its spin-off programme, during an election period could lead viewers to think that the corporation was biased in favour of the Labour Party."

'could lead', 'was biased'? - WTF, where have these Trustees been for the last, heaven knows, how many years?

It is biased towards the Labour Party - or was, but like all journalistic 'organisations' having seen which way the 'wind is blowing' it is now starting to change its editorial policy.

Question: If the 'Noble Lord' was recruited to act as an 'advisor' to the Government, why was it necessary to ennoble him? Bribery? Surely not.............

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Conservative Transparency?

The Conservative Party website states that:

"As part of our action on expenses, all claims by Shadow Cabinet and Frontbenchers are being published in real time."

By clicking on the link one is directed to a new page which states:

"You can view the expense claims here. They have been made available using Google Docs technology, which is an open and accessible format so people can use the information however they choose."

Having tried to access the link over a number of days now, using both Firefox and Google Chrome, it would appear that there is a 'server error'

If Shadow Cabinet and Frontbench expenses claims are being published in 'real time', one would have thought that steps would have been taken to ensure that 'server errors' did not occur; and if they did, were corrected pdq.

Jack Straw is quoted as saying that "The expenses scandals will be a thing of the past." Perhaps the Conservative Party have taken his statement literally?

Just asking.......

Update: Apparently there is one link working (see comments) but data a month old as at 22nd July - so much for real time!

Why The Fuss?

The Times and Daily Mail lead on stories of the flurry of ministerial announcements and the report from the National Audit Office as MPs start their 80+ day holiday.

Personally I can't see what the fuss is over this long recess; after all is said and done, our real government in Brussels is hard at work - what does it matter if a few admin clerks, based in Whitehall, skive off for a few weeks?

How True

Your Freedom and Ours has a post on Obama and his election victory, encapsulated in which is this:

"I dislike politicians who have no knowledge or understanding and who are so obsessed with a few ideas that they try to impose them on people by hook or by crook."

Helen also makes the point how she takes exception to politicians behaving as ruling monarchs and not the first ministers that they are.

These criticisms are so true of Gordon Brown and even David Cameron, in that they both issue condescending statements on, for example, allowing the people to have more say in how they are governed, for pushing our membership of the European Union but laying down caveats on whether we may be given a referendum, on their idiotic policies on climate change and the reliance on renewable energy, all matters on which they appear not to wish to listen to alternative arguments.

A little more humility would not go amiss in view of the fact we own them, pay them and house them!

Monday, 20 July 2009

Ed Miliband - Waste of Space

For a patronising article, then this in the Guardian by our Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, must be a contender.

Setting to one side a brief spell in television journalism, where he probably learnt the media art of 'parroting' whatever was placed in front of him, one has to ask what the hell this politician knows about the climate or climate change.

"If the world agrees to act on climate change at the Copenhagen conference in December....."

No Ed, the world will not agree; only the self-appointed delegates attending will agree and - if Al Gore is an example of their intellect - will then produce nothing more than mumbo-jumbo, based on false data.*

"When we all depend on each other's actions, the world can't afford climate free-riders."

More importantly Ed, when we depend on politician's actions, the voters can't afford political free-riders who have no qualifications for managing the brief they have.

"In manufacturing, there is a thriving set of new industries dependent on low carbon......"

Oh, you mean like the Carbon Trust, the Environment Agency.....................

"And let's use the moment and cause to think about how we design cities and towns to make it easier for people to enjoy greener space, use public transport and have a better quality of life."

What green space Ed, what quality of life - after you have plastered what was this green and pleasant land with bloody wind turbines?

"What will make more people leave the car in the garage and take a bike to the train station?"

For sure, I am only too happy to cycle the 10 miles into Oxford while you get collected in your chauffeur driven ministerial car and driven the couple of miles to your office - Prat!

Discussing the need for wind turbines having to go somewhere Ed, the 'Richard'Head, says "the catastrophe wrought by climate change would indeed destroy many parts of our green and pleasant land."

The only thing that will ruin our green and pleasant land are stupid, brain-dead politicians like you!

By the way, Secretary of State (there's a misplaced title) for Energy and Climate Change, on the subject of wind turbines can you explain how you are going to build three giant turbines a day, between now and 2020? At peak demand of 56 gigawatts we would need 112,000 turbines covering 11,000 square miles, or an eighth of Britain's entire land area. And can you explain where denying the electorate the right of planning appeal for these turbines fits into the democratic process?**

On reflection, maybe Prat is too good a word when used as a description of either Miliband!

* Talking of false data, our Parish council recently had a presentation, by the Environment Agency, on future flood defense requirements using data supplied by the IPCC. When I queried why other sources of data were not being used I was informed that Defra only allow the EA to use data supplied by the IPCC. Talk about 'fixing' the odds!

**H/T: Christopher Booker Sunday Telegraph 19th July 2009

Monday 20th July

Apologies for the little, or no, posting over the last few days. Normal service will be resumed by Thursday next.

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Answer There May Be None

Throughout history the United Kingdom has usually managed to have politicians of stature appointed to the great Offices of State - except of late when it has been our misfortune for the Labour Party to be in power. True to form the present 'joke politician' from the Labour Party, who fills the post of Foreign Secretary, is no different.

David Miliband blogs on the FCO website and his latest offering is about Afghanistan. The comment I have posted is awaiting 'moderation'. All I have asked is a simple question:

Would he please explain and justify why £billions are being spent on imposing democracy in Afghanistan, in place of rule by an unelected and unaccountable 'cabal', when the Government, of which he is a member, are giving away our democracy to an unelected and unaccountable 'cabal' in Brussels.

I won't hold my breath....................

Norwich By Election - The Forgotten Party?

Overnight two opinion polls published their findings and the media duly 'parroted' the results, yet there may well be a surprise in store for the three main parties.

Craig Murray, standing in Norwich reports that:

"I have knocked on hundreds of doors personally, possibly thousands, in the last three weeks. I can report that I have detected absolutely no public enthusiasm for the Conservative Party. The media's presumption that this is a shoo-in for Chloe Smith seems based on nothing. In fact, many more people have told me that they are voting UKIP, than have said they are voting for any other party. The large majority say they will either not vote, or will vote for an independent." (my emphasis)

I wonder...............

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Saturday 18th July

No posts today - will resume tomorrow

Friday, 17 July 2009

An Additional Word

Following on from the post by Mark Wadworth, who had nothing to add at the time, I feel duty bound to my 'twopennyworth' - a phrase from when we had 'real money, not this 'mickey-mouse' decimal crap we have now. On that point, as a matter of interest, when I started work in 1960 - earning £7, 10 shillings a week (£7.50 to the 'new born' amongst you), having paid tax, my keep and season ticket, I still had 'money' left in my pocket on pay-day each Friday - those were the days! But, again, I digress....

A number of observations:

Roger Helmer, in his paper for the Bruges Group entitled 'Cool Thinking on Climate Change' quotes the Renewable Energy Foundation as saying that wind turbines are garden ornaments, not power stations (page 57 of the print edition) - garden ornaments? WTF! You need a bloody big garden to have an ornament that size!

The EU already has established competence under the existing Treaties for environmental policy and it has an established track record in extending its powers to include powers not previously covered (ie, when the EU ambushed the Major government by insisting that the Working Time Directive was about Health & Safety - a competence of the EU - and not Employment, where the UK had an opt-out). Note that ratification of the Lisbon Treaty will provide the EU a competence in energy!

So therefore it is about control - global terrorism, so we need an EU police force, more security resources and more central control; global financial crisis, so we need a European Financial Regulator and more central control; global warming, which is an unproven science, more central control over policy, tax, emissions and industry.

It is important to repeat Roger Helmer's assertion that Climate Change is not science - it has become the 'new' religion! As with religion, it is not often the subject of rational debate; those that disagree with the 'accepted' view are branded 'heretics'. Armageddon approaches! The Climate Fanatics 'push' the line that if we will only follow their 'ideology' of 'changing our ways and adopting their prescription of abstinence', salvation is ours! Those of us who question 'Climate Change' are classified as 'Climate Change Deniers', yet we are members of an 'illogical' sect, as no sane person can deny that climate changes! It happens, always has and always will!

The 'environmentalists' are fond of stating that there is 'a scientific consensus', yet
there is not. Many scientists have signed letters to governments protesting about the distortions of policy in 'climate policies'. Christopher Booker, in his many articles in the Sunday Telegraph, has 'blown out of the water' virtually every opinion of the 'environmentalists', here, here , and here are but three examples, yet no-one appears to listen, least of all those amongst our 'government'. One could almost say that he is 'blowing in the wind'!

In conclusion, I would refer readers of this blog to a post I made on 10th June this year, and a quote which sums up the entire illogicality of the 'environmentalist' 'argument' :

"Al Gore: I think he should go back to Hollywood. What you get from Hollywood is fantasy."

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Who Has?

The Mail is reporting that our ex Second Home Secretary has lamented: "When I became Home Secretary, I'd never run a major organisation....."

And which of your ex-colleagues has Jacqui? And why should MPs be banned from having 'second jobs', as some appear to want - is that not where you learn to run an organisation, major or otherwise?

Poor Jacqui then compounds her naivity by then stating that whilst not having given much thought to what she would do were she to lose her seat at the next election, presumably in the faint hope that she does not, then states that she would hope to return to Government, should Labour win.

Jacqui, Jacqui - having said you had never run a major organisation, and from all reports you never actually 'ran' the Home Office, what makes you think you then could?

Extension of Freedom Of Information Act

The Justice Secretary, Jack Straw, has announced four new categories which will be covered by the FOI Act; namely acadamies, ACPO, UCAS and the Financial Ombudsman Service. Most noticably companies that receive contracts from the public sector will not be covered.

Now, what was it Gordon Brown said on 10th June last? Oh yes:

"I believe that we should do more to spread the culture and practice of freedom of information. So, as a next step, the Justice Secretary will set out further plans to look at broadening the application of freedom of information to include additional bodies which also need to be subject to greater transparency and accountability. This is the public’s money, and they should know how it is spent." (my emphasis)

If a company wins a contract from the public sector, then surely the money the company earns is the 'publics' money?

Why Fight To Impose On Others What We Give Away?

Richard North, over at EUReferendum has another excellent post in which he makes a number of very valid points.

This prompted the thought that it is hard to reconcile the three main parties agreement, in effect, to continue spending £billions in an attempt to impose democracy in Afghanistan, in place of an unelected and unaccountable cabal, whilst simultaneously giving away Britain's democracy to another unelected and unaccountable cabal in Brussels.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

You Are So Right Ed - But For A Different Reason

Ed Miliband, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change - brother of the idiot supposedly in charge of our Foreign Office - has spoken:

"By next April we'll have the new infrastructure planning commission in place,"


"The biggest threat to the countryside is not wind turbines, but climate change,"

By next April he not only hopes to have yet another quango set up, but still firmly believes that wind turbines are not a blot on the landscape! Compounding his inexperience, he then states that social tariffs and targeted energy efficiency measures would "avoid an increase in fuel poverty".

Ed, Ed, Ed; the only 'blot on the landscape' we have at the moment is your incompetent government! The only reason we may be facing 'fuel poverty' is that you and your f'tard colleagues have done nothing to rectify a situation that has been staring you in the face for ages, compounded by the decision of the 'Wise One', Our Dear Leader, to sell to the French (the French, for heaven's sake) the only company this country had that made nuclear power stations!

If there is a God, may he take away your ability to flush what is left of this country down the bloody pan!

Two Questions

Ambush Predator picks up on a report in the Mail, commenting on a statement by Alan Johnson - Home Secretary and, as some would have us believe, the next Leader of the Labour Party - that he does not lie awake worrying about Britain's population hitting 70million and that he is not afraid of living in a multi-cultural society.

Since when did a government Minister actually 'live' with the 'hoi-polloi and have to contend with all the hassle that that entails?

An example of how the political class/elite is held in such contempt is exemplified by the statement from Sir Andrew Green who poses the simple question: "For a start, how is a government that is broke going to pay for all the houses, schools and hospitals that an extra seven million immigrants will need in the next 20 years?"

Maybe we, the people, should insist that a pre-requirement to become an MP is that they take an IQ test?

I Beg To Differ

The Speaker's conference, a committee set up to consider ways of making the Commons more representative, has made controversial recommendations in its latest interim report.

Anne Begg, Conference vice chairwoman, feels that "Despite recent changes, MPs remain predominantly white, male, middle-aged and middle-class.", whilst the report warned that "plummeting trust in MPs was also a "matter of urgent concern", whilst also calling for more representation from ethnic minorities and those disabled.

What, in the name of all that is holy, will filling half the Commons with MPs who are either women, from ethnic minorities or disabled do to increase the trust in MPs? Have we not seen in 'Expensegate' women and those from ethnic minorities who appear to have abused the system?

On top of which Ms. Begg, with the introduction of Open Primaries we will be the ones to decide which candidate is selected to represent us - not you or some 'tinpot' committee, set up by some vertically challenged individual in the hope it may increase his standing.

When, oh when, will MPs stop believing they are the ruling elite and that they feel able to write their own 'club' rules?

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

How True

One of the blogs I read, although not on my blog list, is that of Nadine Dorries - she may be a Conservative, but she is a blonde and not dumb either! But, again, I digress.........

Having now stopped fantasising and thereby returning to the matter in question, Nadine relates how she had dinner with Lord and Lady Rothschild, at which Lynn Forester - aka
Lady Lynn Forester De Rothschild - was the speaker.

One story Nadine quotes - told by Lynn Forester - struck a chord:

An immigrant who had arrived in the US with nothing, he had worked hard and saved hard and put his two kids through college who were both doing incredibly well.

Lynn asked him would he, instead of having had to work so hard to elevate his family, have preferred help from the State?

The man replied, “No, for two reasons. The first is that the state doesn’t know what I want and the second is what the state gives me the state can take away”. (my emphasis)

Therein lies the death-knell for socialism!

Just Leave Us Alone!

Mr. Eugenides has a great post, with two links both of which I suggest you link to.

The basic message to politicians, especially Gordon Brown, is:

Will you just get out of our lives - please!!!

Food for Thought

When considering why Britain is broke, consider this:

"In the last period for which figures are available, the two weeks running to 22 June, the UK paid over £161,264,379.67 to the EU’s vaults. This was that fortnight’s subscription costs to the EU – over one hundred and sixty million pounds."

"If you went out of town for 24 hours to visit relatives, while you were away the EU membership fee cost £11,518,884.26 – eleven and a half million pounds."

"In the time it took to boil an egg, that was £23,997.68."

Food for thought indeed!

H/T: The Taxpayers Alliance

Its The Sun Wot Said It

From Open Europe's press summary today:

"The Sun reports that German Constitutional Court judges called the Lisbon Treaty an “illegal power grab”, in their judgement last week, as the Treaty takes away sovereignty from nation states in a number of areas, such as the right to set laws on defence, taxes, the police and education...............Open Europe is quoted as saying: “British MPs need to wake up — and demand the same powers.”

A leader in the Sun writes that the German court decision “even rejects the EU Parliament as a democratic body – pointing out that it does not even have a proper Opposition. This must surely put paid forever to the grandiose dream of a European superstate?”

If only, if only!

Rhetorical Darkness

Many political 'hot potatos' are the subject of debate, in today's world, amongst which are energy, defense, NHS, education and funding of political parties.

Christopher Booker has an excellent article in today's Mail on the energy crisis facing us, the Times on how Ainsworth came to be appointed Defense Secretary, Lansley accuses the government of 'rhetoric' on their health care plans.

All three stories, each in their own way, highlight what is wrong with our political elite and that is the fact that while 'the lights may be on' (at the moment) it is obvious 'no-one is in'.

At the end of the day, all the problems come down to the fact that the country is broke - due to firstly, the idiotic financial path followed by the last Chancellor who, as Prime Minister, continues the folly and secondly, to our membership of the European Union and the associated annual costs as a result. As John Redwood posts, the political elite seem to have their priorities in the wrong order.

There is only one party, today, that has the good of this country at its core and that is the UK Independence Party; coupled with two Conservative politicians who truly believe in democracy, namely Douglas Carswell and Daniel Hannan co-authors of The Plan.

When will our political elite open their eyes and view the devastation they have created? The electorate are, it is believed, opening their eyes and don't like what they are seeing.

Monday, 13 July 2009

MPs Not In It To Make Money?

The title of this post paraphrases something Our Dear Leader said, recently, about the'Expensegate' scandal.

Really? It would seem that this MP has not 'read the script'. This story is a prime example of the disillusionment that voters have, presently, with politics.

The 're-dec' friends with whom I am presently staying - life-long Conservative voters - changed their vote at the recent Euro and Local Elections, voted UKIP and will do so again. Beside the reason that they had, for a long time, believed that they elected politicians to look after their interests thus allowing them to 'get on with their lives', they had (a) become totally disgusted with the revelations of 'Expensegate', (b) finally 'seen the light' over the EU and (c) read 'The Plan' and thus could see that MPs, generally, had abrogated their responsibilities, not only to their constituents, but also to their country.