May 26, 2014
UKIP winning the Euro election will have come as no surprise to anyone who has been out canvassing these past few weeks. The mood of the electorate was very apparent and an anti-establishment/Westminster vote was always going be registered.
What was surprising was the decimation of the Liberal Democrat vote, and is ‘just reward’ for a string of broken manifesto promises and for taking a pro EU line that was bordering on the ridiculous. I suspect that there is more woe to come for the Liberals at next year’s general election.
The opening up of our borders to immigration from new member states in the EU was always going to lead to a backlash from voters especially at a time when the economy has more room to recover. While unemployment is significantly down and important economic indicators are all pointing in the right direction it will nevertheless take time for the full effects of this recovery to filter through especially to those areas which were hurt the most during the recession under Labour.
While the principle of freedom of movement of persons between EU members is a sound one, it only works effectively when this movement is between people in states with similar living standards and similar incomes. Where there is a divergence in these factors between nations, then the movement of persons primarily in one direction with an obligation to also provide benefits to those arriving will inevitably create difficulties and tensions within communities. Those arriving and settling in specific areas of the country also leads to pressure on the education and health services and can lead to additional problems, and when a political party incessantly highlights these concerns then it is inevitable that its message will resonate with voters which is what UKIP has effectively done.
As things stand the hands of any government are tied in dealing with this problem. Either there is an effective re-negotiation with other EU states in this and in other areas where there is a plethora of diktats and legislation emanating from Brussels or we simply pull out of the EU -anything else is simply tinkering at the edges. The Conservative Party is the only party committed to re-negotiation and to holding an in/out referendum and unless it gains a majority at the next general election we’ll be having more or less the same debate and discussion at the next Euro election.
April 13, 2010
You can read it here
In short the Conservatives plan:
· to build a new economic model
· to build the Big Society
· to build a political system where people have more power and control over their lives.
Compare it with Labour’s manifesto and its:
· Big State -v-Big Society
· Government meddling-v- Trusting people
· Big debt and Borrowing -v-Prudence and New Economics.
April 12, 2010
Labour launched its manifesto today and one thing that stood out on a skim read of the education section is this:
Frontline spending on Sure Start, childcare, schools and 16-19 learning will be increased, safeguarding our priorities such as an additional 41,000 teachers and 120,000 teaching assistants. But funding will not rise as fast as in recent years, making tough choices necessary to focus resources on the front line, with £950m saved through collaboration and efficiency in back office functions and procurement and £500m from quangos and central budgets. (Chapter 3:2)
At the drop of a hat Labour will find savings of £1.45 billion from its Education budget including from quangos! Since at least 2005 when the Tories argued that a large amount of taxpayers money was being wasted in Education, Labour has replied that this was simply untrue and accused the Tories of wanting to cut frontline services – but today cutting that waste has become so important that it has found its way into Labour’s manifesto and amazingly and unsurprisingly this will be done while ‘safeguarding’ frontline services. Hypocrisy of the worst kind!
January 26, 2010
The UK economy is officially out of recession but only just. While any improvement is welcome an increase in output of 0.1% is nothing to shout about especially as there is a risk this figure maybe revised downwards. Despite the Government pumping billions into the economy in an attempt to quickly exit the recession and increase output before the general election, the result hasn’t been great as the UK economy crawls out of recession and is the last of the major economies to do so.
December 15, 2009
The decision to strike by Unite BA cabin crew members is totally irresponsible and counter productive. If the strike goes ahead over the Christmas period BA will take a huge financial hit which will mean it will make even more people redundant and reduce cabin crew numbers even further. BA made a loss of £292m in the first half of the year and it isn’t rocket science to work out that unless it makes changes such as reducing a further 1,200 staff which it announced recently it is unlikely to survive. Can Unite not comprehend that it is not acting in the interests of its members in encouraging strike action but against their long term interests?
October 23, 2009
I was unfortunately very disappointed with last nights Question Time and especially the way David Dimbleby chaired the discussion. Everyone knows that the BNP is a racist and vile party. Nick Griffin’s views are equally well known especially those relating to race, immigration and Islam i.e BNP topics. Yet more than three quarters of the show was devoted to these issues with quotes of what Griffin has stated in the past being thrown at him from all sides. Griffin despite being hated by almost all in the audience must have been delighted to have had the chance to say that immigration had been and was still out of control and that Islam was incompatible with western democracy. His message wasn’t to the studio audience but to those living in run down council estates and other deprived areas where such messages are so well received. He had several more open goals and had he not been so nervous and overwhelmed he could have made more of this opportunity to put forward his ideology and get his message across.
The panel discussions should have focused more on current concerns of the population on matters such as the economy, housing, education etc which would have exposed the shallowness of the BNP ideology. The BNP does well when it is criticizing others, highlighting or exposing populist concerns and being entirely negative and blaming a particular group for all society’s ills. Yet it doesn’t do well or win when it has to put forward policies to tackle these concerns or explain them in any detail.
Griffin would have looked even more out of his depth on discussions on education or crime or managing the economy out of the recession. In the end the BBC got its ratings and we didn’t learn anymore than we already knew about the BNP and Nick Griffin, who could have made much more of the oppurtunity afforded to him by the BBC to get his message out but failed to do so.