Monday, 30 June 2008

Happy Birthday to the NHS

The Labour Party has been out in force celebrating the 60th Birthday of their supposed greatest achievement, the National Health Service.

Unfortunately the NHS was a Tory idea, pushed by Winston Churchill and backed by Liberals (the real Liberals that is NOT the Liberal Democrats who are a totally different group). Papers coming to light now after over 50 years show the NHS was opposed by Labour and denounced as a right-wing plot”. Ernest Bevin even denounced it as a “social ambulance scheme”. It was only when public opinion swung behind it that Labour backed down and introduced it after winning power in 1945.

So nothing changes in the Labour Party. Even 60 years ago they were looking for any passing bandwagon and jumping on board, stealing the ideas of other parties and claiming them as their own. Just look at Hartlepool, the biggest single change to the town was brought about by the Marina development; a project pushed through, against local Labour opposition, by the TDC, a Tory Quango.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

All quiet on the blogger front

Hello everyone, sorry its been a bit quiet on the blog front recently but its been fairly hectic in the Henley Campaign Office and blogging has had to go down my priority list for a while. Last night we were all at a well attended UKIP Public meeting in Henley Town Hall. A panel of speakers addressed issues relating to the Henley by-election, the European Union and the state to politics in the UK and around the world. The meeting was opened by Steve Radford from the Liberal Party who spoke on the importance of free trade as opposed to the protectionism preferred by the European Union. Nigel Farage then spoke on the Lisbon Treaty and the importance of the Irish NO Vote. The final speaker was the Henley UKIP by-election Candidate, Chris Adams, who shared his campaign experiences and talked about issued being raised on the doorstep.

The UK Independence Party then continued with a proud tradition of throwing open the floor to the public to ask anything they liked. There are no planted questions, no set pieces and no subject is taboo. The session opened with an impassioned plea from the floor for UKIP to disband! It is not an unreasonable assumption that the question was being put by a disgruntled Tory. Nigel Farage explained that UKIP’s aim was to get this country out of the European Union. In order to do that we needed to fight elections against every pro-EU Party and that included the Tories. The questioner denied the Tories were Pro-EU but accepted it was Heath who took us in and every Tory Prime Minster from then on allowed the power of the EU to grow, up to and including the last Tory Prime Minister, John Major who signed the Maastricht Treaty. The current Tory Leader, David Cameron, is now on record as saying the Tories will not repeal the Lisbon Treaty should they win power at the next election. The feeling of the meeting was definitely that any Tory who felt the Conservatives were in any way really Euro-Sceptic was in fact fooling themselves. The Tory Grass roots might not want further integration but the Conservative Leadership was 100% united with Labour and the Lib-Dems in supporting the EU Project.

Questions then covered “What do Lib-Dems actually stand for?” (Answer of course whatever they think you want to hear in order to get your vote) through to the state road network in Henley (Answer, terrible!). Chris Adams, UKIP Candidate for the Henley by-election wrapped up the meeting at 9.00pm and about forty of us retired the Argyle public House in Henley to relax and unwind after a very successful day’s campaigning.

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Maths Teachers and real numbers

I read in the press yesterday that the government has announced its intention to have a specialised maths teacher in every primary school within 5 years. Fantastic you might say. Proves this government is serious about Education, Education, Education. Alternatively you might question why such a vital subject isn't already being taught by specialist teachers.

In actual fact it displays the complete and utter inability of this government to carry out basic maths themselves, probably as a result of politicians no longer having to live in the real world. A Specialist maths teacher in every school will need an additional 3,000 teachers every year for the next 5 years in order to hit the target. That is ADDITIONAL maths teachers, without replacing any who leave (mind you according to figures I have seen there are currently only 200 specialist maths teachers in primary schools in the whole country).

According to the Training and Development Agency for Schools only about 2,000 maths teachers were likely to be trained this year (2008), with even fewer next year. Secondary schools across England and Wales have advertised 1,650 vacancies for maths teachers already this year. That leaves the government quite a bit short of its pledged maths teacher in every primary school. In fact the current output of qualified maths teachers will be hard pressed just to keep up with the numbers leaving the profession or moving into the Private Education Sector.

This government, in common with local government, is great at thinking up policies, announcing targets and writing press releases that say how wonderful they are. Unfortunately they are totally unable to deliver on their pledges because in the real world announcing a target doesn't actually mean that the target will be instantly met. Politics needs people who have actually had to achieve something rather than the current bunch who think all they have to do to make something true is to announce i to the press. Captain Piccard of the USS Enterprise might be able to "make it so" with a wave of his hand but that also isn't actually real life, despite what many "Trekkies" might want to believe.

PS The government also announced (again) its commitment to offshore wind power. Try applying some maths skills to the targets for turbine construction and then factor In the restrictions of having to physically construct, site and commission the turbines! The government's program is already several hundred turbines behind schedule!

Saturday, 14 June 2008

East Midlands Fire Control centre in Castle Donington

Divide and conquer has always been a good motto to follow. As a Hartlepool Councilor I do trend to focus on Hartlepool issues but as the UKIP National Campaign Director I also get to see quite close up what is going on in other parts of the UK. Without doubt there are many local issues that are being repeated all over the country. Refuse collection is a good example. Almost every local council is dealing with this issue on a local level but actually it is a national problem. I have already commented on this Blog about Lord Darzi and his review of health provision in the East Midlands and how his review there is a mirror of the Hartlepool Review. Another East Midlands which mirrors North East Concerns caught my eye recently, namely the regionalisation of fire and rescue centres. According to press reports the East Midlands control centre in Castle Donington is ready to "fire away" as the first of nine Regional Control Centres being established across the country. The new centre will co-ordinate the fire services across Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Rutland, Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire. The Chairman of East Midlands Fire and Rescue Control Centre Ltd praises the new centre (well he would wouldn't he) as being able to "offer a new and critical resilience in fire and rescue emergency services". I'm not sure what that means but it sounds good.

I am all in favour of local decisions being made locally and I am against big brother centralising government (like the EU!) but we must guard against parochialism and becoming so focused on local issues that we miss the big picture. Health Reviews, Regionalisation of Fire and Rescue Services, local Education and schools provision all need to be seen in a wider context. Don't let the politicians pull people so far down into the weeds that they might be looking after their own tiny bit but letting the big picture be lost.

Multi-Area Agreements (MAAs)

Few people outside local government will be familiar with MAAs. However, Multi-Area Agreements (MAAs) have been quietly developing for some time and the Tees Valley MAA will be one of the first in the country.

The Mayor has approved MAA’s for regeneration, housing and transport. Control of these will pass to a Board consisting of 11 members. The five Tees Valley Local Authorities will get one seat each. The other six go to private sector representatives. This makes a majority of the Board appointed rather than elected. Hartlepool’s sole representative will be appointed by the Mayor from his cabinet. A majority of unaccountable and unelected interests on such a powerful body must be a worry to anyone who still clings to the belief that they live in a democracy.

Hartlepool’s Housing, transport and regeneration policies will now be set by a majority of individuals who are totally unaccountable to Hartlepool voters. This must ring alarm bells for anyone who remembers how badly Hartlepool suffered under the control of Cleveland Country. The Tees Valley MAA could turn out to be worse. MAAs came about because the Regional Assembly concept was rejected by the North East electorate and so another way was needed to remove the troublesome ability of voters to influence who makes decisions that affect their lives. As the Lib/Lab/Con are now effectively just separate branches of the same Party this means the One Party State is almost upon us anyway so British Democracy R.I.P.

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Nine meals from Anarchy

Apparently this is the phrase used by the head of the Countryside Agency, a quango set up by Tony Blair, to describe the true state of the food supply in the UK.

The claim was dismissed by most people when he first made it but it is now reportedly being taken more and more seriously. As oil prices reach another record high, and show every sign of going even higher, the reliance this country has on road transport is becoming glaringly obvious. Everything moves by road! Imagine if the oil supply was badly disrupted and the petrol stopped flowing even for a few days. The shopping trips to the out of town supermarkets would become impossible, perishable foods would spoil in the lorries when their refrigeration plants stopped working and in these days of “just in time” deliveries it wouldn’t be long before the supermarket shelves were empty. It is estimated that most homes would run out of food after just three days or nine meals. Bread and Milk would be gone even sooner than that!

If your children are crying they are hungry and your next door neighbour has a vegetable plot in his back garden then surely he can’t begrudge you a few potatoes or a turnip or two to keep you going can he? Unfortunately of course it is a small minority that now grow their own food so it’s not just you looking with covetous eyes at your neighbour’s veggies. Once people start to get hungry than law and order would be the next to go. This was exactly what happened in New Orleans in the USA after the hurricane. When aid was slow in reaching people and they got hungry then looting started and fights broke out over scraps of food!

Never happen here of course. Not in a civilised country like ours!

From Evidence to Excellence

As a keen follower of the adventures of Lord Darzi I often read his blog about what he is doing around the UK. This week he was in Kettering to launch the East Midlands Strategic Health Review, entitled catchily “From Evidence to Excellence”

This vision for world class healthcare across the East Midlands region aims “to save lives improve standards and put safety first. Top of the agenda are strategies for improving the quality of care and ensuring patients are seen quickly and in a convenient location. The document also outlines steps to encourage local people to lead healthy lives. The vision also heralds an increased investment in staffing and midwifery-led services.”

Nothing there anyone could object to! But we have all heard it before. The phrase “midwifery-led services” of course is shorthand for “No Doctors” and “investment in staffing” opens the door for more managers because the missing word there is “clinical” since “investment in clinical staffing” is a far cry from “investment in staffing”

The whole process is designed to give an appearance of local consultation and involvement but in my opinion Darzi is making decisions based on orders from above sand these decisions are not influenced one iota by local consultation. As the economy slides further into recession and the hidden PFI Debt starts to take bigger and bigger chunks of NHS Spending then the real agenda will emerge. Which is of course keeping Labour in power by spend, spend, spend policies that bring short term gain but which fairly shortly are going to inflict long term pain on all of us. (Except the politicians who caused it of course, they will have their own nests well feathered against a rainy day!)

Friday, 6 June 2008

Turkeys do not vote for Christmas

On Tuesday 3rd June 2008 in the House of Commons a debate was held on a subject close to the heart of our Honorable Members of Parliament. The Pay and Responsibilities of those who govern us was under discussion.

A contribution by Peter Lilley MP actually argued that MP’s pay should reflect their responsibilities. In his words….

“If people receive more responsibilities, they get higher pay. If they move to a post with fewer responsibilities, they expect to receive lower pay. The same should be true of Parliament. If, as is contemplated under the Bill that deals with the European constitutional treaty, this House hands over more of its powers to European institutions, MPs' remuneration should reflect that diminution of their responsibilities.”

The whole speech runs to several pages and so I’m not going to reproduce it all here. Needless to say the issue is important because Parliament is considering transferring another significant slice of its powers on energy, foreign policy, immigration and several other areas to European institutions under the Lisbon treaty. A substantial transfer of powers has already occurred under previous treaties and when the Treaty of Lisbon is ratified the course will be set so that in fifteen to twenty years British MPs will have similar responsibilities to today’s County Councilors.

To give the last words to Peter Lilley MP

“Those who support the transfer of power from here (British Parliament in Westminster) to supranational institutions should logically accept that our pay should reflect the diminution of our responsibilities. But, strangely, all the Euro-enthusiasts whom I asked to sponsor the Bill declined to do so without explaining why. Too many Members are happy to avert their eyes from what is happening, so long as they retain the prestige and emoluments that were appropriate to a fully sovereign Parliament. Turkeys do not vote for Christmas.

If any Labour Members oppose the Bill, I hope that they will come out and object to it here and now, rather than trying to dispose of it by subterfuge one Friday morning. I look forward to hearing them argue for having their cake and eating it. I doubt that they would convince many of their constituents that, unlike any in other occupation, MPs' pay should be divorced from their responsibilities.”

He who pays the piper calls the tune

David Miliband has reportedly announced that a wide range of NGOs (Non Governmental Organisations) all fully supported the Bill to ratify the Lisbon Treaty. It has now been disclosed (much to their intense annoyance) that the EU provide funding for a wide range of these NGOs including NSPCC, One World Action, Action Aid, Oxfam, Friends of the Earth and many more.

It is important to know that the EU will only fund activities that 'further the aims of the EU Agenda'. While this may well be quite reasonable (why, indeed, should they fund those that are not supporters of their aims) it is quite unreasonable that this funding should be kept secret.

It is important that we are aware of the implicit pressure placed on these NGOs to support the EU Agenda if they wish to continue to receive this funding.

'He who pays the piper calls the tune'.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Hypocrite (3) “One Who Dissembles Their Real Nature” (Collins Dictionary)

Well the Henley by-election is now upon us. The Lib Dems will claim to be fighting to retain rural post offices BUT in fact they are 100% behind the EU Postal Service Directives which are the reason post offices are closing.

The Lib-Dems are the most pro European Union Party in British Politics BUT they never discuss their policies in this area because they don’t want voters to know where the Lib-Dems really stand.

Once again actions speak louder than words!

Lib-Dems have voted to close post offices at every point since 1997.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Wheelie Bin Robbery!

As many people know to their cost if you lose your Wheelie Bin (lose being another way of saying if you get it nicked!) then you have to pay for a replacement. However one enterprising householder thought the £60 his local council was charging for a replacement was a bit steep so he went on line and bought an almost identical bin from Germany for £27, including delivery.

The German bins are identical except the lids slope slightly. They are made to the same European standard, have a lid and wheels and can be lifted up on the council machine and emptied. Unfortunately his local Council are refusing to empty the bin because it doesn’t have their name moulded into it.

The case is now being investigated by the EU Commission as an illegal barrier to free trade. The Council in question made £46,000 last year for supplying bins but stressed the charge was for delivery of the bin to the householder, not for the bin itself. Asked if a householder could therefore avoid the delivery charge by collecting the bins from its depot themselves this was deemed to be impossible because of 'health and safety' risks.

Mind you £60 for delivery of a free bin from the local Council Depot or £27 to buy a bin from Germany, including delivery. If the Council’s costs are really that high then no wonder Council taxes are going through the roof. Of course the Council’s costs are probably not that high but replacement wheelie bins are a “nice little earner” for the Town Hall.

PS Checked with Hartlepool Council and the charge for a replacement bin (Green or Brown) is £10. Possibly that's a bit cheap! How about that, me saying Councils should charge more!

Hypocrite (2) “A Pretender To Virtue” (Collins Dictionary)

The Lib Dems are also supposed to be in favour of a referendum on the European Union.


in April this year when their MPs in the House of Commons had a chance to vote for a referendum they abstained.

Once again actions (or lack of actions) speak much louder than words.

The biggest con trick New Labour ever pulled?

As the father of two teenagers, one of whom has just completed her AS Level Exams (in 5 subjects) and the other who is mid way through his GCSE’s (in 9 subjects) I am starting to take an great deal of notice of news concerning Universities and entrance requirements.

I was therefore interested to read that Imperial College London is trying out an entrance test for subjects other than medicine, which has one already.

Apparently all their applicants had four or five A-levels and "grade inflation" had destroyed the role of A-levels in selecting undergraduates. So many students now achieve A grades that it is impossible to use A Levels to distinguish between the “very good” and those who are only “good”.

Imperial reportedly takes 40% of their undergraduate intake from the 7% of British children who are educated in the independent sector. The Rector of Imperial College now believes we have got to do something radical about the education of the children in 93% of our schools that somehow are just not getting the education they deserve and to "save" bright children by taking them out of state schools and using public funding to support them in private schools.

Back in the dim and distant past of the late 70’s I remember struggling with my A Levels in Biology, Physics and Chemistry. Occasionally you did hear of some super swot who was doing four A Levels, but in those days no-one did five! And anyone achieving 5 Grade A’s would probably have been on National TV!

“Education, Education, Education”

Is this the biggest con trick New Labour ever pulled on the British Public?

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Mission Houses Museum Work Opportunity

I must be the luckiest man in the world. Not only do I have over $20,000,000,000 in a bank account in Nigeria, a further $200,000,000 in a locked account in Saudi Arabia and a regular opportunity to invest in six producing Oil Wells which will double my investment every 90 days but now I've been offered a fantastic job working from my own computer. Apparently "Mission Houses Museum" have selected me to be their Donations Officer!

I received this e-mail today.........sounds TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE......

Subject: Home Based Job
Date: 06/03/2008

Are you currently looking for an opportunity to home based job or direct from your computer.This is an sensational opportunity for you to work with Mission Houses Museum as our donation officer.

This is a fantastic opportunity to build an extremely rewarding career and these opportunities would suit people who need flexible working arrangements and Located anywhere in Canada, Australia, UK and USA. We have job opportunity available for a Donation Officer with a negotiable good salary starting from $15,000.00 - $65,000.00 monthly with discount on every donations processed. Alot of people and companies make donations to our mission house for the help of the needed, the poor, motherless home and charity all over the world.

The successful candidate will need to have a little customer service experience and a computer with internet connnetion. Also you need to like working in a team environment and have good communication skills.

**No prior experience required
**Work from home --- No daily commute!
**Spend more time with your family!
**we are assuring you that at no time will you be required to make any upfront payments of your personal funds to us for whatever reason.
**Computer at home with access to broadband and checking your email messages at least twice everyday!


Mission Houses Hawii.
Agent E-mail:

Hypocrite - “A Deceiver” (Collins Dictionary)

Some of the Lib-Dem election material I've been told about in Henley seems to be claiming the Lib-Dems want to help the hard pressed motorist and those in fuel poverty!

Not sure how this claim stacks up with their actions in the last Labour Budget in March this year. When Labour proposed a 2p rise in fuel duty the Lib-Dems did not even call for a vote on it. On May 15 their MPs could have contested it again in the Public Bills Committee on Provision to Change Duties, but again they did not. The Lib Dems in Westminster have twice let pass an opportunity to vote against fuel duty increase.

How then can they claim to want to help the hard pressed motorist. Maybe they should get a copy of Collins Dictionary and start looking up "Hypocrite" themselves.

Actions speak louder than words!
UKIP the only party that Dare to be different!

Boris not yet abandoned his Constituency?

Well its 3.47pm on Tuesday and according to BBC NEWS Online the writ for Henley still hasn't been moved.

Assuming the Writ is moved today then Tuesday becomes Day 0 of the by-election process which can run for as short a period as 15 days and a maximum of 19 Days (Saturdays, Sundays, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Good Friday, bank holidays and any day appointed for public thanksgiving or mourning are not included in the Day Count).

If therefore today is day 0 then nominations would close not earlier than day 6 but not later than Day 8 and polling day would be fixed by the acting returning officer, between days 15 to 17, 16 to 18 or 17 to 19, depending on the day fixed as the last for the delivery of nomination papers. A by-election timetable is much more flexible than the general election timetable as the Acting Returning Officer has discretion in fixing the last day for the delivery of nomination papers and the subsequent polling day. Thursday has become the convention but there have been post war by-elections where polling day has been on another day.

To hold the poll on Thursday June 26th then that would be Day 17 and so Nominations would Open on Wednesday 4th June and could close as early as Day 6 Wednesday 11thy June or as late as Day 8 (Friday 13th June). Of Course that is not a minimum campaign. Polling Day could still be on June 26th if the writ was moved as late as Thursday this week. Day 1 would then be Friday 6th June and Nominations would close the next Friday (13th June).

The writ for a by-election is usually issued on the same day as or the day following a motion in the Commons for the Speaker to make out the warrant for the issue of a writ. There is a convention that the writ should be moved within about three months of the seat becoming vacant, but this is not a statutory or parliamentary requirement.

However, this is all academic at the moment since Boris Johnson has not actually yet resigned his seat. The procedure for that is for him to apply to the Chiltern Hundreds, an office under the Crown, the holder of which is barred from being an MP. The current holder of the Office is Tony Blair, since he used the same method to abandon his Sedgefield Constituency once it was no longer of use to him.

One thing no-one has been able to tell me is if the application to the Chiltern Hundreds must be made in person of if it can be done in writing? If so Boris can't resign until he gets back from holiday?

Monday, 2 June 2008

I love Plymouth!

Chris Adams, the UKIP Candidate for Henley, had a very good weekend in the constituency visiting Benson and Henley and popping into a couple of residential homes for a chat and a cup of tea.

Stopping briefly in Thame, again, Chris spoke to several large groups of young voters (over 50 of them) and gave them copies of our “Enough Is Enough” leaflet. Almost 100% agreement with our stance on the EU and support for our 5 year immigration policy. Loads of first time voters said they would be interested in more information and we will be sending that out over the next few days.

With a sense of devilment the UKIP group then went on to Aston Rowant and Kingston Blout and delivered whole village with our leaflet. This is the village where the DIM-LIB candidate now “lives” even though just as recently as the May local elections he was telling everyone how much he loved Plymouth and how well he was settled there. Unfortunately he didn’t win a seat on Plymouth Council so obviously his love of the City has waned somewhat. Any bets on how long he remains a Henley resident after he looses the by-election. A week? A few days? A couple of hours!

Don't breakdown more than 62 miles from home!

The cost of fuel is now a serious worry to almost every driver, but anyone planning a trip of more than 62 miles away from home should also make sure there is no chance their car might break down. Motorists using roadside rescue organisations, who offer a guarantee of a lift home in the event of a breakdown, are being left stranded at service stations following the introduction of EU health and safety laws.

New rules forbid rescue tow trucks from travelling more than 62 miles from their bases unless they are fitted with a tachograph. Both the AA and RAC use hundreds of trucks which are not fitted with the equipment and so "rescued" drivers are being dropped off part-way home and being made to wait for another truck to take them on the next leg of their trip. The vast majority of breakdown truck journeys are short distances, often only to the nearest approved garage. This is why few tow trucks have tachographs fitted. The longer distance “rescue” journeys are relatively rare and breakdown companies had asked for the application of common sense to allow an exemption to the new rules.

The Department of Transport could have allowed such an exemption but of course it has been many years since any British Government stood up to the dicktats of Brussels or gave any consideration for the practical consequences to the British public of enforcing more and more poorly thought through EU Regulations in this Country.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Chris Adams for UKIP Henley

The UK Independence Party announced today that it had selected a candidate to fight the forthcoming by election in Henley. The seat will become vacant when the newly elected Mayor of London Boris Johnson resigns from Parliament.

He is 35 year old Chris Adams a fitness instructor from Aylesbury. Mr Adams works for a registered charity which helps youngsters learn gymnastics at a fitness centre in Aylesbury. Mr Adams also coached the British Tumbling teams in the European and World Cups.

Mr Adams has been a member of UKIP since 2004 and contested the Aylesbury parliamentary by election the following year. UKIP Party leader Mr Nigel Farage said that Mr Adams was a first class candidate with very strong links to the area.

“Chris went to school in Aylesbury and has lived and worked here all his life. He has done a tremendous amount of organising the party in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire and has shown real flair and grit.”

He continued “We are not going to make ridiculous claims about winning this seat but we certainly aim to take on the Lib Dems. We think people should know about their broken promises over holding a referendum.”

“For years they have existed as a party by picking up protest votes.This will not work in Henley when people find out what they have done and what they actually stand for.”

Here for the Party

I opened up the UKIP Henley Campaign Office bright and early this morning. Leaflets introducing our candidate have been printed, distribution routes have been planned, briefing notes prepared and a large number of UKIP Activists were expected to descend on the constituency raring to go. I hadn't even got the lights switched on when a dozen people were clamouring for my attention. "We are here for the Party" they explained "What needs doing, how can we help before everyone else arrives?"

I was overwhelmed, this was a fantastic start to the day! I started to explain about leaflets, delivery routes, etc only to be met by blank looks. "You are all UKIP Party members aren't you?" I asked. The puzzled looks disappeared. They were here to help set up for a child's birthday party next door!