Tag Archive: Yvette Cooper

That Speech – further brief thoughts (2)

Another factor which has come to mind is with reference to the assumption that following Cameron’s speech this morning he has shot the Ukip fox where Conservative-held marginals are concerned, thus removing the threat that Ukip might take Conservative votes, thereby letting Labour gain the seat.

It should be noted that unless MilibandE reverses his current position of denying the electorate a referendum on EU membership, his policy may well work to the disadvantage of Labour MPs whose seat is classified as marginal, whereby as things stand today Labour may well lose votes to Ukip, thus letting the Conservative candidate win – which is a sure-fire way of losing ones “Balls”, but I digress. Were I a betting man I could see myself putting a tenner on a change of “European” policy” prior to 2015 – one feels sure that “Mrs. Gary” will be bending the ear of EdM long before we reach “High Noon”.

There must be great concern among eurosceptics that a repeat of 1975 will occur, when the ‘No’ side were heavily out-spent and heavily out-PR’d by their opponents. Perhaps a move should be made to hire whoever managed the last ‘No’ campaign in Switzerland, or make an attept to “poach” Helle Hagenau – who is actually from Denmark – and worked as Secretary General in Norway’s “No to EU” in 2001. Lets face it, it has got to be worth a try, especially if it prevents a “Matthew Elliott” type with an over-inflated opinion of his self-importance getting his hands on the ‘No’ campaign tiller.

Just a couple of random thoughts – there will probably be others….…..

 


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Representative Democracy

Don’t you just love this system of democracy under which we are forced to live our lives?

At the Labour Conference today we are informed that:

Yvette Cooper has announced that a Labour Government would scrap the Independent Police Complaints Commission and replace it with a stronger authority. (And who foots the bill for that?);

Ed Miliband has suggested he would consider the renationalisation of Britain’s railways. (And who foots the bill for that?);

Sadiq Khan set out policies including creating a minister for mental health in the justice system and a Women’s Justice Board. (And who foots the bill for that?);

EdMiliband (again) today pledged to focus on green issues after coming under fire for leaving the environment of his keynote conference speech on Tuesday. (And who foots the bill for that?).

These three politicians, who don’t forget are supposed to represent the views and interests of their constituents, are now telling us what our views and concerns are before we have even thought of them.

How on earth can this be considered as being ‘representative’ of democracy? Rhetorical question really, as it is not by any stretch of the imagination – it is, though, representative of dictatorship.

Readers will not need reminding that the word “democracy” originates from the Greek dēmokratía (rule of the people) and is based on “demos” (people) and “kratos” (power). So when politicians tell the people what they will, in future, do and pay for, perhaps said politicians can explain to us where “democracy” (people power) enters that which they are proposing?

In respect of the question I posed, namely: “And who foots the bill for that?”, just ask yourself, as government has no money of its own, from where does it get it?

With the apparent burgeoning wish of the political class to dictate to us even more than they presently do, perhaps the launch of the Harrogate Agenda might need to be brought forward?

 

 


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Wherefore democracy?

“The UK public elects Members of Parliament (MPs) to represent their interests and concerns in the House of Commons. MPs are involved in considering and proposing new laws, and can use their position to ask government ministers questions about current issues.”

UK Parliament website.

In the media today we are informed that:

  1. With the recent killings of two police officers our elected representatives have been hitting the airwaves to inform us that restoration of the death penalty – likewise arming our police – would be a retrograde step with Nick Clegg warning against arming the police in response to the death of two police officers; Philip Davis being quoted as saying the case for restoration of the death penalty grows stronger by the day; Norman Tebbit stating that the “deterrent effect of the shadow of the gallows” should be debated. In this instance it has now been confirmed that the  man suspected of killing the two PCs in Greater Manchester was on bail over a fatal pub shooting.
  2. Politics Home informs us that the Home Office is bringing in new guidelines for domestic abuse cases to include non-violent coercion, such as preventing someone from leaving the house. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said the changes would “help expose the true face of domestic violence, which is much more complex and much more widespread than people often realise”. The new definition will be implemented by March 2013 and follows a 15-week consultation which took views from the public, victims, charities and frontline agencies. Coercive behaviour is described as “an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim”. The Government also announced today a Young People’s Panel set up by the NSPCC which will help inform the Government’s work to tackle domestic violence. Action for Children has piled in lobbying for these new ‘laws’ to be applied for the benefit of children and Yvette Cooper has not missed an opportunity to make a political point.
  3. With yet more tinkering to our education system, this time by Michael Gove, John Redwood appears to be sitting on the fence.
  4. We are informed by EurActiv that the introduction of smart meters is to proceed following the publication of a ‘benchmark report’, one due for mid-201, on the cost and benefits of smart meters (and we all know that we will be told obviously the benefits will be great and the cost minimial – when in actual fact benefits and costs finding in practice will be reversed). The roll-out of smart meters has already begun in this country with our government still determined to have 30million electricity meters and 23 million gas meters replaced by the 2019, at a cost of £11.7 billion to energy customers, recovered through their bills – despite a false-start, the cost of which will no doubt also end up on our bills.
  5. Yesterday, we witnessed a Conservative MP telling us what should be done about the question of our nation’s membership of the European Union.

When considering the points above, an immediate question arises – namely, if MPs, who are our elected representatives, are meant to represent our interests and concerns in the House of Commons, then on what basis does any MP pontificate that the death penalty is wrong; on what basis does any MP feel they are able to introduce yet more laws defining how we should interact with each other? Which ever of the above examples you care to select one common factor will be found and that is that not once have the people been consulted – unless of course the political elite do in fact possess God-like powers and, in exercising them, ‘pulled off’ a number of referendums unnoticed?

Over the last few weeks I have attempted, on Twitter, to engage Daniel Hannan, Tom Harris and Glyn Davies in a debate on democracy, representative democracy and the right of people to decide the type of society in which they wish to live and in each instance they cited excuses why it was not appropriate so to do at that particular time. It is logical to presume that their failure to accept the opportunity of debate can only mean they are unable to argue the case for a system they wish to continue.

That MPs do not represent the views and concerns of those that elect them cannot be in dispute as the evidence that they do not is now plain for all to see. A video has just surfaced of Nick Clegg apologising for the fact that he made a pledge on tuition fees and failed to adhere to that pledge. Clegg with Cameron made a pledge that voters would have the right to recall errant MPs, but did not mention that the final decision on the voter’s request would rest with a panel of their own. Why should we trust those whose pledges mean absolutely nothing to them, ones that they break for political expediency or for the simple reason that in making them they had no intention of keeping them?

As I have commented previously – and so many times it is probably becoming tedious for readers to hear it repeated – we are continually informed by our political elite that change is necessary for our country. The only problem with that message is that the change which is necessary is one they do not want and have no intention of giving us.

The change about which I speak is one that would mean people in an area have control over their lives and the type of society in which they live; one that would reinstate the people as the deciding factor in that which happens within and without our country; one that reasserts the status of the people as the only true sovereign entity in our country. Needess to say I talk about the introduction of a system based on the principles of direct democracy.

It is interesting that the one country that practices those principles is Switzerland and doubly interesting that that country would appear to be the destination of politicians wanting to learn more about those principles. Within the UK we are beset, almost on a daily basis, of articles in the media which report on discord within various sections of our society. Yet when one turns to Swiss media the reporting of such discord is, in contrast, virtually negligable – and the reason why is because such problems are resolved by the people within each area (canton) and most noticeably without the interference of central government.

QED?

 


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When one door closes, another opens….

Donata (bless) Huggins, Daily Telegraph, writes (so we are informed) on politics and life in the Westminster village and her latest offering informs us that the Tories need to be careful as Labour are stealing their elected police commissioners policy.

Apparently yesterday Ed Miliband and the ‘Ballsess’ (Yvette Cooper) launched the campaign for Labour’s candidates, among which Donata lists: John Prescott, Vera Baird, Jane Kennedy and James Plaskitt, while also noting that the Tories have no candidate of note.

Now one would have thought that anyone associated with the police would need to be of good character, so one has to ask what these four are doing applying and what the Labour party are doing condoning their candidacy (Click on their names for their ‘Expenses History’). Those candidates named by Donata Huggins may well offer, in their defense, that they broke no expense rule, however I feel sure that failing to keep one’s trousers zipped was not included in any ‘rules’. It also begs the question whether they need a CRB check and whether their ‘crimes’ will be notated in said checks – but I digress……

The political class are taking the electorate for fools (again) by offering candidates that failed dismally in their previous positions as MPs. When one considers how former MPs, the majority of whom have ‘failed’ one way or another are then elevated to the House of Lords one has to ask why do we allow this type of situation to continue, let alone exist in the first place?

 


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Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into!

A misquotation*, but one similar, that is no doubt echoing round the inside of No10 as Our Dear Leader contemplates the debacle that the Abu Qatadar situation has become, while at the same time those in the Home Office and Foreign Office are busy ensuring that their necks are nowhere near the block when an axe falls.

The actualité is covered by Carl Gardner on his Head of Legal blog – and interesting reading it makes when considering the legal aspects and interpretation of legalese. David Hughes, Daily Telegraph, weighs in with his input, whilst he who the Guardian, in 2010, considered one of the most powerful people in the media and who, in 2012, the Observer considered  one of the most influential Tories outside the cabinet also weighs in asking whether we rule our own country or do ‘judges’* from foreign lands run Britain? Dirgessing, one has to ask just where has this paragon of political opinion been for the last three decades?

That a brick has been dropped, one of great size and from a great height, would appear to be becoming undeniable – and the irony of two women, one with a BA (Hons) in Geography and the other with a first class honours in PPE with a top-up of an MSc in Economics debating what amounts to legal matters in the House of Commons does but continue the comedic theme of the Qatada affair.

It would appear that, where government is concerned, within the political, bureaucratic and legal world you just can’t get the staff today.

 

 

* Laurel & Hardy


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