Thursday, November 30, 2006

A country heading down a cul de sac to chaos

From this morning's Independent, linked here.

Lord Ramsbotham exclusive: Justice system is absurd. Broken. Chaotic

The former prison chief lambasts a justice system in meltdown after Tony Blair's decade of failure on crime and punishment

Published: 30 November 2006

Yesterday's announcement that the prison population now exceeds 80,000 is the latest low point in what one can only describe as the Government's headlong and self-induced race to absurdity as far as the conduct of imprisonment is concerned.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Politicians, Loans and Trust

It has become a commonplace that few people now trust their Westminster elected politicians. Yet figures published today indicate that the self-serving organisations within which these unworthies operate have between them run up loans of some sixty million pounds (much of it unsecured), one press report is linked here. Why such unsecured indebtedness is possible can only be answered by recognising the fact that these distrusted political parties have a stranglehold on power from which others with money to risk or lend hope to bend towards their own benefit. Our parties have been bought! Trust is of course a BIG concept as any dictionary will confirm, eg Collins: reliance on and confidence in the truth, worth, reliability etc., of a person or thing; faith. Can we nowadays really expect those who seek power to rule over us to be really worthy of all that? Sadly we cannot, we could, however, possibly make a presumption that they would act towards the governed if not with an element of goodwill, then at least in such a way that by securing their own short term interests they would not deliberately damage the long term welfare of either the governed or the nation. The deep indebtedness of the two main parties highlights how they have failed in even this latter and lightest of guages of honourable intent. Who can give the majority of the members of the Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet such a presumption of goodwill? The total mismanagement of the Conservative Party reported in today's Daily Telegraph shows that party has no concern over its own finances and can therefore hardly be expected to run the country in prudent fashion. Read the link from here. Labour with its leadership under police investigation for the very loans detailed today cannot conceivably honestly raise sufficient funds to clear its debts without making future policy entirely hostage to the whims of its financial recuers. The Conservatives find themselves in the same boat but without any prospect of ever gaining power due to the lack of belief in policies andclear absence of any moral fibre in its new leader. If ever there was a moment for principled men to cut lose from the present corrupt two party structure, with all their debts, then surely it must be now! The Electoral Commission link is here for the latest loans and other data from their main site here.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Rising resentment in England over Scottish Rule

The Sunday Telegraph headlines the results of an ICM poll on the break up of the UK which will be a surprise to none but the chattering classes. Read it here.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Britains principle security committee meets

COBRA met this afternoon after traces of radioactivity were found in three locations around London all visited by the poisoned Russian spy who died last evening. The British Prime Minister and Defence Secretary were not in attendance, both being at a Scottish Labour Party meeting in Oban Scotland; How very apt! The meeting was instead chaired by the man responsible for England's Home Affairs - the serial self-publicising and ultra-Scottish Dr Reid - he who ran the Defence Department when the dud ammunition mentioned in an earlier post was actually purchased and who oversaw the deployment of our troops in Afghanistan - from where pictures of our marines being mortared in the desert are being shown by Sky News as I type this post.

Appalling BBC Lies

The main midday news report on BBC One the principle TV channel of the state funded broadcaster at one o'clock pm today Friday 24th November 2006 had this comment by its own reporter from Iraq on the hopelessness of life for these people with "Al Qaeda bombs by day and American bombs by night" It is years not weeks or months since the USA bombed Baghdad, but what does truth matter to the BBC's propagandists?

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Now inhumanity on top of incompetence

Dud ammunition ordered by cheapskate MOD for Britain's fighting forces. The Daily Telegraph article may be viewed from here; there is also a video link from the web page. The article begins: The lives of paratroopers were put in danger after the Ministry of Defence sent defective ammunition to Afghanistan, it can be revealed. The situation became so serious that a platoon from the 3Bn The Parachute Regiment refused to go out on patrol until the problem was resolved. The troops had to borrow ammunition off Canadian and American special forces as they battled to fight off Taliban attacks.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Berlusconi and Mills trial underway!

Blair buddy and holiday host Silvio Berlusconi, ex- Prime Minister of Italy, went on trial yesterday in Milan. How long before we see Blair in a dock with Mrs Mills , otherwise known as Britain's useless Culture Minister and Blair flunky, Tessa Jowell returned to the back benches? Report here and in more detail from here.

Random fingerprinting to extend to pedestrians

From a story that began the day as affecting only transgressing motorists, the new electronic fingerprinting then seemed to extend to their passengers (see our posting below) and now, according to the BBC might , depending on the police force concerned, also involve ordinary pedestrians, read here. Meanwhile, from David Davis, shadow Home Secretary, so far not a sound! In such a manner does authoritarianism march on, when parliament abdicates its responsibilities and the leader of the main opposition party is solely concerned with his own increasingly slimy image, read here, here, and here.

Totalitarian Tony trashes further freedoms

The latest move giving the police power to fingerprint any stopped motorists seems to be starting today, read here, without even any pretence of prior parliamentary discussion. Sky News is this moment reporting that this system has already been in use in Luton for two weeks. Apart from brief coverage on the Radio 4 Today programme this latest outrage seems to yet again be meekly accepted by the cowed and once proud British population. According to the Telegraph report of this latest persecution of the public, linked here, passengers too will be subjected to such fingerprinting and identification, so even by electing not to drive our privacy is not secure. Meantime families will have their children constantly monitored according to this article in the Daily Telegraph, which will be undertaken in conjunction with an army of state-employed busy-bodies presumably with rights to enter your home to supervise your children. It is not as if the government is in control of events clearly within its own proper area of control such as deportation of illegal immigrants read here and also on uncounted legal immigrant workers as The Sun points out here today:

Government figures showed 510,000 immigrants have come to work in the UK from Poland and other countries since they joined the European Union in May, 2004.

Statistics for July to September this year show 59,365 new arrivals signed up to the Worker Registration Scheme.

But the numbers do not include self-employed workers - thought to include a significant number of Eastern Europeans in the building trade. It also excludes those who are here but not working.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Branson finally recognises threat to democracy

Sir Richard Branson, who feted New Labour in its early days, has now decided that its enabler - media magnate Murdoch is a threat to democracy. Unhappily for Britain this sudden revelation of the blindingly obvious has come three general elections too late for the nation. The following is a quote from the Telegraph with that and other links below: Sir Richard said the Government should "draw a line in the sand" over media ownership in the interests of British democracy. He said Mr Murdoch's media empire meant he had the power to choose the country's Prime Minister and the extent of his ownership meant "we have got rid of democracy in this country". Read more here, here and here with a strange report also concerning democracy on UKIP London MEP Gerrard Batten's involvement in the Russian poisoning from UKIP Uncovered linked here.

Monday, November 20, 2006

French election and the EU

France's rejection of the EU Constitutional Treaty was a huge setback for Euro federalists. We have earlier reported the policy of cherry picking that treaty and proceeding without further referenda proposed by the likely leader on the right Nicolas Sarkozy. After the nomination of Ségolenè Royal as the socialist candidate, it seems from a report in today's Telegraph, linked here, that her proposal will be very similar but with a bit of English bashing thrown in (perhaps to disguise the anti-democratic nature of such plans). If the EU becomes an issue in the French election, with both main candidates agreeing only on how best to get around the earlier democratic decision of the electorate on the EU, this would surely seem to be for the main benefit of candidates from the smaller parties. This blog will follow these developments with great interest and report it here.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Labour & Conservative corruption

There is much coverage in the morning press over the police inquiries on the sale of peerages, typical is this from The Daily Telegraph, linked here, from which comes this quote: In a reference that will alarm ministers and Downing Street officials, Mr Yates said he was confident that operational security remained very tight because the "major developments in this inquiry are not in the public domain". The investigating team had adopted a thorough, methodical approach that had resulted in the acquisition of "significant and valuable material".

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Billy Joel- We Didn't Start The Fire!
OK if not us - then who? Enjoy anyway!

Scandalous guideline of Attorney General Goldsmith

The following is a quote from The Guardian of 3rd November, linked here, regarding prosecution of the Prime Minister in the honours for sale scandal: It is thought that Lord Goldsmith will consider whether prosecutions that damage confidence in the two main political parties are really in the public interest. The truly frightening aspect of this theory is that it is only by exposing the corruption of the two main parties will probity have any chance of being restored to the British political process!

Roger Helmer MEP Newsletter item

The EU: The tide is turning Last month I reported on EU Commission Vice-President Günther Verheugen's extraordinary admission that the regulatory costs of the EU are up to four times higher than any trade benefits from the Single Market. Journalists have had a field day with the news. This is Jeff Randall in the Telegraph Business News of October 18th. First he quotes from a Dow Jones report of May 2003: "Outside Euro, UK stands to lose economic and political clout". Then he writes: "For the sad souls who cling to the fast-disappearing hope of that headline ever coming true, it has been another miserable week. Facts are stripping away the Eurofanatics' clothing. Very soon they will stand covered by nothing but the jock-strap of their own perverse desire to further erode British Sovereignty". He goes on to make the points about the Open Europe survey showing that a majority of British CEOs believe that EU costs exceed benefits, and Commissioner Verheugen's estimate of EU regulatory costs. Ruth Lea of the Centre for Policy Studies writes: "In the business community, it is no longer heretical to suggest that the UK should move to a free trade area with the EU ... those who believe otherwise are locked in the outdated geo-economics of the mid-twentieth century". In late October I dined in London with a group of prominent businessmen. Our genial host, in the course of his business, regularly hosts lunches for small groups of CEOs from major British companies. He remarked that five years ago, it was eccentric and "almost indecent" (his word) to express any doubt about the EU, or the Single Market, or the euro. Today that has all changed, and the mainstream view is that the EU is costing more than it is worth, and that we need radical renegotiation. We are reaching a tipping point. It is increasingly difficult to argue that "the benefits of EU membership are self-evident", as lazy thinkers and government ministers love to say. Indeed, the opposite is true. My big worry is that our Party, fearing to talk about the EU issue, is not only falling behind the public mood, but risks missing out a key shift in business opinion as well. (Continues....) To subscribe to this regular newsletter please e-mail

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Queen opens Parliament

The Scum at the top of the British Political Process Picture from the State Opening of Parliament 15/11/06 Prime Minister and head of Her Majesty's Government, Tony Blair some relevant links here, here , here and here. Leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition, David Cameron, some relevant links here, here, here, and here.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Blair's final Mansion House speech - the EU

I have commented on the Iraq aspects in the posting beneath this. On the EU the key passages for me were this:

"Europe gives us weight and strength. In fact, in my view, Europe should be far more confident about its potential.

Provided it eschews grand institutional visions and concentrates on grand practical visions - for prosperity, in energy, fighting crime, in developing defence capability - it has a huge, even exciting future. Enlargement has been remarkable." The proviso "Provided it eschews grand institutional visions" is of course the problem. The EU is nothing if not a grand institutional vision which has clearly set its face against both democracy and accountability to those it governs. Hence the need for continuing and active eu-sceptics. AND the next crucial statements coming somewhat later, these frankly frightening words, all of which may be found in the full text of the speech as published by the International Herald Tribune, linked here are as follows: "...our partnership with America and our membership of the EU are precisely suited to Britain.

For that reason, it would be insane - yes I would put it as strongly as that - for us to give up either relationship.

For that reason anti-Americanism or Euroscepticism are not merely foolish they are the surest route to the destruction of our true national interest.

Both alliances are founded in history. Both are, however, now, at this point, utterly validated by the future. These are no misty-eyed products of sentiment, relics of a bygone age to be taken out and cradled fondly.

They are the vital life source of British power, influence and weight in the new global community taking shape around us. To nurture and enhance them is not vain glory.

It is the most hard-headed realism.

Lose them - and alliances are like all living things, neglect them and they die - and we will spend a long time struggling to revive what's gone."

The facts of course argue otherwise. It is not the EU Rapid Reaction Force fighting with us in Iraq, Italy and Poland have troops to be sure, but it is the Americans and Australians with us to the fore. It was a war memorial to our dead kinsmen from New Zealand that the Queen opened in Hyde Park last weekend. These are the vital alliances that in Blair's words he and his recent predecessors, particularly John Major and Edward Heath, - have neglected and are allowing to die. Of course we need a strong alliance and relationship with our near Continental neighbours, particularly France with whom we fought two world wars for freedom and liberty in the past century. Indeed through Nato we are still in action together with many continental nations and the Canadians through our main defensive treaty organisation Nato. The authoritarian Blair who has turned Britain into the most watched nation in the world and treated its parliament with contempt, is bound to trumpet the corporatist and anti-democratic EU, but in looking to our future (which can validate nothing until it becomes the past) I suggest that tried and tested friendships based on a common sense of freedom, democracy and a shared heritage should be the last alliances to cast aside, not the first! Blair's anticipated next personal gravy train must not become confused with the true national interest. If there is one man who has done more to make this excerpt from his speech a joke, it is Tony Blair himself - "Britain in this early 21st Century world is a country with extraordinary strengths. It is well and justifiably respected" NOT!

Iraq and the Iranian and Syrian element

The British broadcasting news media are frantically spinning for negotiation and mediation with Iran and Syria in the insurgency/civil war now underway in Iraq. In the case of the BBC Radio 4 Today programme this seems to verge on the actual mis-reporting of the content of Tony Blair's Mansion House speech. What the PM (whose weakening hold on power is now a major hindrance to any progress on this grave crisis) actually stated as reported in The Guardian, linked here, was as follows: He also urged Syria, and to a lesser extent Iran, to choose whether they wished to join the dialogue and become partners in a wider Middle East peace. In fact Blair actually stated the opposite of what the BBC and Sky are actually repeatedly reporting, the relevant paragraph being this: "There is a fundamental misunderstanding that this is about changing policy on Syria and Iran. First, those two countries do not at all share identical interests. But in any event that is not where we start." Downing Street sources may well be spinning in a contrary direction and Blair, a serial capitulator to thugs and terrorists, may actually believe that supplication to these tyrannies might be the best bet to salvage his last forlorn hopes for an honourable legacy, but reality requires firmer action and stiffened resolve. James Baker, is a pragmatist and experienced statesman (the best character summary I have read is in the book 'Voltaire's Bastards' by John Ralston Saul, ISBN 0-14-015373-X) and is more likely to utilise the aftermath of Israel's recent campaign in Southern Lebanon as a guide in handling negotiations with Iran and Syria rather than Blair's 'achievements?' in Northern Ireland. The misguided liberal media in Britain has allowed the defeat for George W Bush in the mid-term elections to send a rush of appeasement sentiment into their reporting. In reality the only power transferred on Capitol Hill is the ability to cut off funding to America's troops on the ground in Iran and Afghanistan - hardly a likely action for those seeking real Presidential power in two years time. This is especially true when the US troops and Generals can clearly see the results of lack of firm political commitment and military funding by regarding the present plight of their British co-combatants in those two conflicts. Blair must go asap for Britain to move forward under a leader who will remain in office to continue with the consequences of the grave decisions now needed.

Monday, November 13, 2006

PM Blair's name now linked to Serious Fraud Case

The Times this morning links the Prime Minister's name to an investigation involving BAE Systems and an air traffic control system contract in Tanzania, read in full from here, it opens as follows:

Fraud office is investigating £28m deal agreed by Blair

Members of the Cabinet were overruled by the Prime Minister when they queried a BAE Systems contract in Tanzania, writes our correspondent

A CONTROVERSIAL deal personally approved by Tony Blair to send a multimillion-pound air traffic control system to Africa is being investigated for corruption, The Times can reveal.
============================================ In the cash for honours issue there is no suggestion that Mr Blair has acted other than to promote the interests of his own party, which given his supposed beliefs he presumably feels is something in the best interests of his country, (which incidentally he claimed as Scotland in the final response of his November press conference). Other questions which have arisen during his premiership concern he and his wife's disastrous property speculations and the following links and quotes are provided to remind ourselves of the potential seriousness of some of the allegations these have raised. In the list of MPs interest Tony Blair has the following from 'They work for you' linked here and updated September this year: =====================================
5. Gifts, benefits and hospitality (UK)
My wife receives royalties from a book "The Goldfish Bowl: Married to the Prime Minister 1955-1997" (2004, Chatto & Windus) which makes reference to her life in No 10 Downing Street.
7. Overseas benefits and gifts
August 2005, accompanied by my family I spent 26 nights at a private villa in Barbados owned by Sir Cliff Richard. I have made a charitable donation in lieu of the cost of this accommodation. I paid for all other expenses including flights. (Registered 20 September 2005)
8. Land and Property
Two residential flats in Bristol from which rental income is received.
A residential house in London from which rental income is received.
================================================ The disaster of the London property was described in February 2005 by 'The Rat and Mouse', linked here , as follows: ================================================
Blair property curse continues

ThisIsMoney reports that the Blairs' Connaught Square property continues to lie empty, haemorrhaging money, as it has done for six months. Originally, the agents were seeking nearly £4,000 a week; but the figure's been slashed to £2,750. (Multiply six months by even the reduced figure and we're talking about a loss in excess of 70 grand.) Now an estate agent from Cluttons, who is successfully renting out a property over the road from Casa Tonerie, is advising the Blairs to knock another thousand off the weekly rental figure if they're serious about finding a tenant. Christ, if Brown was this bad with numbers... =========================================================

Earlier of course came the Cheriegate affair over the Bristol flats, as we were recently reminded in the Telegraph at the end of last month by Jenny McCarney, linked here, from which comes this quote:


The Blairs have been notable in their greed for worldwide influence, power and money, and this greed has slowly eroded respect for the office of Prime Minister.


BUT what became of those Bristol flats is a question much harder to answer from a detailed search on the web. Although I recall reading they had been eventually let to a defence contractor I have repeatedly been unable to trace the source of such a report. This morning however, came this gem from the unlikely source of the Bristol University Student newsletter 'Epigram' 29th November, 2004 linked from here. The following are quotes from that report: =========================================================

The two luxury Bristol flats that Tony and Cherie Blair purchased in 2002 for their son's accommodation during his time at the University are currently being used by a defence firm which has deals with the British government.

The flats have been let to the French-owned arms manufacturer Thales, which has contracts with the Ministry of Defence worth several billion pounds. Furthermore, under a previous corporate name of Thomson CSF, the company donated thousands of pounds to the Labour Party in 2000; however Thales today has an ethical code forbidding such donations.

Last year the company was awarded a 50 per cent stake in the £2.8 billion construction of two aircraft carriers, and is working on the first phase of a £2 billion contract to provide high-tech battlefield communication equipment.

The company has also been chosen as the preferred candidate for an £800 million programme called "Watchkeeper", to produce Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for the MoD.

The flats, which cost £262,000 each in the prestigious Panoramic development, are situated on Park Row, next to the Level nightclub.It is estimated that the Blairs could receive up to £60,000 per year in rent for the flats.


In view of the latest investigations it would seem the author's assumption that -"There is, however, little reason to suspect that there has been any misconduct by the Blairs, and Downing Street has vehemently denied any allegations of a conflict of interests between the Blairs and the handling of their assets. A spokeswoman said that the letting is coordinated by The Manchester Trust, "set up when he became Prime Minister to handle their private financial affairs"........... might be fanciful!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

EU's lack of Energy

The FT reports on Poland's latest attempt to highlight the EU's Achilles heel, linked here. When the EU crumbles as it now shows every sign of so doing, what will be the new European power balance? Poland must clearly be concerned as to where it will then stand. Should the British Foreign Office not now be providing some policy option opinions for widespread consideration and discussion?

Blair's corrupt leadership

The Sunday Times has the minutes of a Labour Party NEC meeting where he accepted responsibility for the undeclared loans, linked from here in pdf format. The following is a quote from that document: "Tony Blair said that he understood members' concerns, and took full responsibility for everything done in the name of the party". The Independent on Sunday has an item indicating the entire Labour Party books were cooked by Blair. Read that from here. Is it possible, with all these ongoing allegations, that OUR Monarch, presently the only functioning arm of the British Parliament, can really open another session of the full Parliament next Wednesday with Tony Blair, still unquestioned by the police, as the continuing head of HER and therefore OUR government with all the powers vested in OUR Parliament?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

The Brussels Journal

I have deliberately kept this blog sparse on links (the original Ironies and my other blogs have enough) but coming across The Brussels Journal, I felt a link belonged on this page. The insightful item below being the clincher:

On the Fall of the Wall, US Elections and Guatemalan Birth Rates

I have not been posting much this week since I was attending the general meeting of the Mont Pelerin Society in Guatemala City. Today (it is still 9 November here) is the 17th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. We just heard a speech by former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar, who brought homage to Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Pope John Paul the Great, Alexander Solzhenitsyn and others and asked us never to forget the millions of victims of communism. Aznar also said that “today’s threat is no longer Soviet missiles. The threat is terrorism.” He added that “Islamic terrorists consider our democracy and freedom to be unbearable” and that policies of appeasement do not work: “Appeasement will not work against Islamic terrorism. We must not forget this lesson,” he said.

continue reading

Parliamentary Prorogation

Last Wednesday the last session of Parliament was formally ended with the ancient ceremony of prorogation, read here and here. The next session of Parliament will not commence until next Wednesday when the Queen is scheduled to perform the State Opening. In light of the resignation of Lord Sainsbury from the government, ostensibly for personal reasons, with many questions still hanging over his role, read here, and the growing reach of the police probe into the honours for loans scandal the next two or three days would seem a perfect moment for the Prime Minister to be interviewed by the police over his role in the corruption of the British political process. The Conservative Party might also do well to use this period of pause to reconsider their own role in the disgrace of the political process. Apart from their new leader's rush to consult with the PM as the crisis broke, as discussed in this post last spring on my blog Teetering Tories, linked here, allegations appearing on the internet via West Samoa and Panama regarding the past of the leader of the opposition seem difficult to ignore if not quickly refuted. For the nation to watch the Queen re- opening Parliament, the source of all authority in the land, with such questions over the men leading the two main parties hanging in the air would make a mockery of the functions of the nation still just beyond their control.

Friday, November 10, 2006

BNP Exonerated as MI5 Head resorts to scare tactics

Irony indeed in this evening's UK news headlines: "We have shown Tony Blair, the Government and the BBC, they can take our taxes but they cannot take our hearts, they cannot take our tongues and they cannot take our freedom." (Nick Griffin, BNP leader on receiving second not guilty verdict). Guardian report from here The other hot item: Dame Eliza Manningham-Buller said the security service was dealing with up to 30 alleged "mass casualty" terror plots against British targets in the UK and abroad. Around 200 terror cell networks are also under surveillance by MI5 and police. And she said more than 1600 identified individuals in the UK were "actively engaged in plotting or facilitating terrorist acts".

Thursday, November 09, 2006


Get the latest on some of their activities from their own Home Page, EuroCOP, linked here. Official EU Organisation? Try to find it on here! No further comment required!!!!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Here comes the Blair white-wash.

Only one person can instruct the monarch over the award of honours - the Prime Minister! If honours have been supplied for the benefit of party funds only the incumbent PM can therefore sensibly be held responsible. Such activities are criminal. The Guardian this morning reports that the Attorney General, already deeply involved over the legal controversy over Blair's methods of invading Iraq, is to advise on the possible prosecution of the PM over honours' abuse, read the article from here. In a true democracy political involvement such as this would be impossible or ruled unacceptable.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Anti-EU Campaign links and update

DEFENDING HEALTHCARE AND SERVICES (Circulation: Campaign for an Independent Britain supporters and Petition signatories) Dear Friend Many people have long been concerned about the effect Private Funding Initiatives (PFIs) and general cost reductions are having on our health service. People are asking why, if the British economy is doing so well, do we continue to face cuts and closures in our NHS? That is why Campaign for an Independent Britain launched our ‘Support for Nurses and Pensioners – or Billions for Brussels?’ leaflet at the TUC conference earlier this year. The response has been fantastic; we’ve had to do three re-prints in as many months. People are clamouring to be told the truth – that both the privatization and the general cost-cuts in the NHS are as a DIRECT result of the billions we lavish on the European Union and because of Brussels-enforced PFI programmes. Please order and distribute more of these leaflets if you can (there’s a link to the order form at the end of this newsletter.) And, if you’re able, do attend our important meeting on this subject, to be held in Leicester on 25 November. (Details from CIB Vice Chairman, George West, at Together with other Parliamentarians in both Houses of Parliament, I have regularly called upon the Government to conduct and publish a roper cost/benefit analysis into the value (if any) of staying in the European Union. These calls are always brushed aside with a lofty ‘the benefits are obvious.’ Yet when the Swiss government conducted exactly such an analysis earlier this year they concluded that EU membership could cost up to NINE TIMES as much as staying out! (Very sensibly, the Swiss have long decided to have nothing to do with the EU). Now, our friends at the Bruges Group have launched an campaign to pressure the UK government into conducting a proper study into the costs of EU membership. I hope you will support them – there is a link to the Bruges Group campaign from our site at We’ve been inundated with replies to our SwitchOffThe.EU website launched the week before last. This, you will recall, is in response to the EU proposal that we will all have to drive around with our headlights on in broad daylight. The issue is not whether this is a good idea or not (although motoring organizations and even the Department of Transport say it might actually result in MORE traffic accidents) but that such decisions should be taken in our own country, by our own lawmakers – not by foreign bureaucrats. Please forward the email message published at campaign/c06s1.html to alert people to this issue. What all these campaigning issues have in common is that they emphasise how powerless our Government is in the face of the Brussels machine, and the extent to which they will try to cover up the facts of their impotence. Otherwise, of course, people might start asking searching questions regarding why we pay our Ministers and Civil Servants huge salaries when all they do is rubber stamp insane Directives from their masters in Brussels. Faced with the task before us, and the conspiracy of silence from our politicians, I make no apology for ending with an urgent appeal: if you can help us financially, either by joining Campaign for an Independent Britain and/or by making a donation, please do so. There are details of how you can help at our website Thank you for your support. Yours sincerely LORD STODDART OF SWINDON Chairman, Campaign for an Independent Britain ================== USEFUL LINKS Campaign for an Independent Britain: Campaigning website: General facts about Britain and the EU: NHS information and leaflet order line: health CIB Head Office 81 Ashmole Street London SW8 1NF Tel: 020 8340 0314 Fax: 020 7582 7021 Email:
Lord Stoddart regrets that owning to pressure of work on the campaign it may not be possible to reply to individual enquiries.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Big Brother

I have quoted below the first two paragraphs of an item from today's Daily Telegraph, linked here, as it reads exactly like the kind of posting that has appeared on this blog and Ironies over the past few years.

History will record that the most baleful legacy of New Labour is not its alarming incompetence or its mendacity in the conduct of public affairs – shameful though they are – but the way in which it has destroyed our privacy. We are the most spied-upon society in Europe, with more CCTV cameras than the rest of the EU combined. In the international rankings calculated by the human rights organisation Privacy International we are near the bottom of the table, marginally above Russia and China but below the Philippines and Thailand.

How did this country, for centuries a bastion of freedom, slither into this morass? Some answers are found in yesterday's chilling analysis of the "Surveillance Society" published by Richard Thomas, the Information Commissioner. Mr Thomas is to be commended for ringing the alarm bells. While conceding that much official snooping is well-intentioned and can bring benefits, he warns that "unseen, uncontrolled or excessive surveillance can foster a climate of suspicion and undermine trust".

Finally there is some publicity given to the destruction of our society, but why has it taken so long and for how much longer will such coverage be allowed?