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Blogs Mar/Apr 09

Women in Politics - April 09

Are they better than men?

There was hope that after Margaret Thatcher women would change the political landscape for the better. She was and is a role model for other women to follow. Whether you agreed with her politics or not she proved herself to have integrity, honesty and total commitment to her cause. She was respected and admired around the world most especially for her forthright nature. She put some of the ĎGreatí back into Britain. Of course there had been many woman politicians before her some equally as admirable like Barbara Castle but here was Margaret Thatcher, a woman leading from the front, setting a shining example.

And then there is Jackie Smith, the kebab eating, porn watching, expense fiddling Home Secretary, who has now become a laughing stock not fit to shine Thatcherís shoes. Between her and her husband, who we the taxpayer also pay for as she employs him as her parliamentary secretary, they get a salary of £200,000+ a year, nearly 7 times the average household income in the UK, yet she still claims a 0.88p bath plug from us and for pornographic movies. How money grubbing can you get?

Her primary home, she claims, is a cupboard in her sisterís house where she stays when she is in London and not the mansion she has in her constituency where her husband lives with their children. This allows her to claim the maximum amount of expenses every year totalling so far £150,000 including the bath plug. This dishonesty of a government minister beggars belief, when we hoped women would set a better standard in politics than their male counterparts. The worst of it is that she claims she has done nothing wrong, technically perhaps not if she can prove she spends more than 3 nights a week at her sisters but morally it is indefensible, doubly so for a so-called socialist. Like an unrepentant crook the only thing she did wrong was getting caught.

She unfortunately is not alone. There is Tessa Jowell who re-mortgaged her home three times and paid it off in cash. She has said there was Ďnothing unusualí in that. Iím sure most of us would think it unusual if it happened once and might question our partner about it and perhaps think that money laundering was involved, let alone if it happened 3 times. She has lived very well off the proceeds. Perhaps Jowell didnít realise she was living with a major criminal in which case she is far too stupid to be in politics otherwise if she did she is far too corrupt. And when her husband got caught what did she do, stick by him? Not on your life, she abandoned him to his fate to save her own skin and her comfortable life.

Then there is Ann Keen, the Brentford MP, who along with her MP husband have a combined total of £175,000 in expenses even though both are London MPs and live in London. They also canít see they have done anything wrong.

There is Margaret Hodge, ex minister for children, (you couldnít make it up) and the child abuse case when she was head of Islington council, trying to smear the victim at the centre of it as an Ďextremely disturbed personí.

Cherie Blair, not an MP, but at the centre of political life and now legendary for her avarice. Greed personified. The list goes on with women MPs who have their snouts firmly in the trough like Yvette Copper and her expense claims.

We should not totally despair as yet, not all women MPs are corrupt or milking the system, there are still some honest ones just as there are still a few honest male MPs but they are heavily outnumbered.

What can we do?
Make sure we donít vote in any of these MPs who have taken taxpayers money to extend their property portfolios or to increase the value of their properties or are just downright dishonest. They are devoid of morality and should definitely not be in politics. It only takes the good people to do nothing to let the unscrupulous succeed.

Being an MP is a privilege which many of us would love to have (if the main parties didnít fill all the safe seats with friends and family but thatís another story). Most of us would be quite content with a salary of £63,000 per annum without having to fiddle any expenses. Next time you hear a politician complain about their salary tell them, ĎGet another job and let someone who is happy with the salary, have a goí. There are plenty of us, equally if not more competent and definitely more honest.

Flash Gordon - April 09

(Prospective) Saviour of the universe (after he destroyed it in the first place).

The G20 party bash is over. They all drank and ate well and slept in their sumptuous beds, courtesy of you and me the taxpayer. A bargain at £20 million; enough to feed a third world country for a year! It turned out as predicted to be a damp squib from which no real agreements were made. Just as you would expect from a dayís meeting with so many big egos involved. No agreement on financial regulations, no agreement on helping the 3rd world, no agreement on climate change. Only an agreement to spend more of our money by giving it to banks so they can pay their huge bonuses, no doubt

America will go back to protected its own industries and dumping its products on the 3rd world as will China. As for Russia the less said about a country run by billionaire gangsters the better. Britain will go on being a low wage economy with rotten social conditions and like the rest of Europe will continue into deep recession. Only France and Germany stood up to Gordon Brownís smoke and mirror routine but then caved in like the rest of them. They probable didnít want to miss a photo opportunity with Obama.

Gordon Brown what can we say about this man? He is like a murderer who tries to get away with it by attempting to bring the victim back to life. Just like the UK economy, flogging a dead horse. Donít forget this is the man that did away with all the restrictions on the banks and financial institutions and caused the massive collapse of the UK Banking sector in the first place. Gordon Brown who spent 10 years cosying up to the City; the Bankerís friend. The man who couldnít see that by letting the City have free rein they would use it to line their own pockets and become choked with greed. Not, as thought, trickle the wealth down to the rest of us but keep it to themselves in huge salaries and bonuses. Do you trust this man to put it right?

Donít let him fool you as he has fooled Obama into thinking he is some kind of financial guru. He has cynically used Obama and the G20 conference to try to boost his flagging reputation at home. Brown is a total and utter failure and we mustnít be conned into thinking otherwise. If he had any shred of decency he would have resigned a long time ago. Remember this is the man who with Tony Blair led us into a disastrous war in Iraq. This is the man that wants us all tagged and numbered. This is the man who cynically manipulates the press. This is the man who has never been elected, is too afraid to go to the polls.

This man has no moral backbone; no sense of what is right. We must at all costs get rid of him and his corrupt cronies at the next election despite any misgivings we may have concerning the opposition parties.

G20 Who needs them? - March 09

These G20 parasites are the ones that got us into the mess in the first place and they are still there! Who trusts them to get us out of it? It's same cosy clique of people with all their hangers on; we just canít get rid of them. They are ok; they are made for life; with their after dinner speeches, world lecture tours, non-working directorships and the money they have stolen from our pockets.

Their constant refrain is we have had a magnificent boom for the last 10 years with unprecedented wealth but they have had it even better by helping themselves to huge amounts of our money while bankrupting the rest of us. For them and their friends the party goes on but for the rest of us the party is over and we and our children and our childrenís children will have to pay for it and keep paying for them. It is one hell of a hangover.

Yes we have access to cheaper, poor quality, material goods which in some cases are downright dangerous, but we have to run 10 times faster to keep up to buy them. Our jobs are insecure, our society deteriorating, our schools and universities in decline, our hospitals the basket case of Europe, our houses unaffordable, our pensions gone, ever mounting bills, gridlock on our roads, pollution, the gap between rich and poor ever increasing, a huge underclass with more than one generation that has never worked and donít want to work, no-go areas, gang culture, soaring crime, the list goes on and on. This is the miracle of modern society, we deserve better in the 21st century.

There is justice and fairness only for the rich and that goes along with good schools, housing and healthcare. These politicians have sold our future for their greed; impoverished society so a few of them could get rich, offered short term rewards so they could get voted back in.

Now what are they going to do about it? They are going to have a meeting in London, flying in first class, sitting down to luxurious meals, sleeping in sumptuous hotels, chauffeur driven everywhere with police escorts, no expense spared. What will the meeting achieve? Nothing. They never do. They are only interested in maintaining the status quo. And guess who will pay for these wealthy peoplesí extravaganza? Why of course you and me, the hard-pressed taxpayer.

What can we do about it apart from protesting? We must use our votes more carefully to elect people who want to build a better society for everyone not just for the greedy and the ruthless. Take an interest in who is standing for election, donít just vote people in because they stand for a party. Donít be fooled by short term promises of wealth or with trickle down, it isnít going to happen and vote for those who put the health of society above the wealth of the individual.

Rich Gravy Train to Brussels - March 09

I have another great story about fraud, corruption, embezzlement, fiddling and theft at the heart of Europe. Yes itís that great unaccountable institution the European Parliament. That distant body of lawmakers in their own world of far, far, away who the people have even less control or say over than our own governments. Elections take place every 5 years but no-one knows what any of the candidates stand for or even who they are, yet this European body meddles with all aspects of our lives.

Not only do they squander our money on loopy schemes (a ex friend of mine has a hobby farm of a few acres where she keeps her horses and gets paid £15,000 a year to do so, benefit of the European Parliament) and have never passed a financial audit but they also fiddle their expenses.

Not only do they fiddle their expenses up to £1.2m over 5 years but they then vote not to tell the public about it (Report in the Sunday Times Feb 09). Sounds familiar? Yes just like the UK Houses of Parliament but at least that was overturned and they do have to report their expenses to some extent.

You can imagine that if senior ministers in the UK help themselves to our money, like Jackie Smith the Home Secretary claiming £120,000 over 4 years for staying in one room at her sisters or Ed Balls the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (setting a great example to our children) and his wife Yvette Copper (once appropriately Housing Minister) claiming £44,000 a year for a Ďsecondí home in London when they plainly live there, then in Europe where no one is monitoring what they are doing, the embezzlement among the politicians must be vast (like Bankers without regulation Politicians are totally untrustworthy). As to handing out juicy contracts to their friends we wonít even go there.

The most worrying aspect of all of this is that we the public are no longer outraged that these seedy, greedy, crooked politicians are pocketing our hard earned money. We may as well just open your wallets and purses and let them help themselves because that is exactly what they are doing. They donít need to do an honest dayís work, they can just dip into our taxes whenever they like. Very few people now go into politics in order to better the world they go into it to better themselves especially the two-faced, champagne socialists. There is nothing worse than a politician that claims to want to help the less well off while helping themselves to their taxes.

What can we do about it? Ensure you use your vote carefully and keep writing to your MP and MEP and demand that all payments, expenses, second jobs are made public and accessible on-line. You can contact them by email; they are all listed for your area under and keep writing until they become accountable like the rest of us.

Bankers Beggar Belief - March 09

Iíve got this great story for a book or film about a world where a few people persuade everyone else that they can make their money grow; so everyone gives them what little money they can spare. These few individuals then get so fantastically rich they donít care about anything anymore and become totally immoral.

They then go wild with greed and lose everyoneís money, as they didnít really have a clue what they were doing in the first place, they were just very well educated and spoken con-men, a product of the top public schools like Eton and Harrow. (Thatís the character type the public always falls for, a crisp suit with a crisp accent, must be gentlemen; canít surely be fraudsters!)

Then the twist at the end of the story, the really hilarious part, instead of the people getting some justice for all the losses, they end up paying for them through tax, unemployment, loss of pension, savings etc and the people who got rich not only get away with it but also get massively financially rewarded. The population is so cynical, cowed and used to this sort of behaviour that they just accept it meekly. What do you think; will it make a good book or film or is it too far-fetched?

Trouble is with this credit crunch the same people are still sitting there who caused it in the first place. We just cannot get rid of them. Sure a few heads have rolled at the banks and at financial institutions but all their companions in destruction who got fat and rich out of the greed that dominated the Financial sector are still there, just as incompetent and greedy as ever, nothing has changed.

We donít seem able to sweep them out and put some decent, honest people in charge. We canít because they are still in charge and still doing rather well while the rest of us suffer. Even the ones who have gone like ĎSirí Fred Goodwin, (knighted for his services to banking, ha, ha) was given a handsome payoff and like all bad pennies heíll turn up again in a lucrative position given to him by one of his fraudulent friends.

The Labour government is still there, Gordon Brown, the chief architect in Britainís total ruin, is still there and he wonít even admit some culpability. Heís more brazen and immoral then Fred Goodwin. Fred only brought about the collapse of a bank, Brown a whole country. Brown the banking deregulator, the friend of the city who gave finance free reign, the man who Ďput an end to boom and bustí or at least the boom part, Mr Incompetent himself, not even elected, has not got the decency to say, Ďit has happened on my watch, I am partly to blame, I will resigní and take the rest of his hopeless and corrupt party with him.