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Living under the Israeli Jackboot

Gaza is one big walled-in prison camp, like the Warsaw ghetto during the 2nd World War, where the Nazis walled in half a million Jews and gypsies and gradually exterminated them. This time it is the Jews doing the killing and once again the world does nothing to stop it.

It was Israel who broke the ceasefire by Ďtaking outí prominent Hamas leaders with their aircraft. Hamas responded in the only way it could by firing a few rockets into the desert. The Israeli response is out of all proportion. A hundred Palestinians die for every two Israelis. That cannot be right or just.

Why does the Western World not act? America does nothing because America is run by Jews and without Americaís backing no other country can be effective against the Israelis especially while America is supplying them with Weapons of Mass Destruction.

Will this indiscriminate bombing of men, women and children in Gaza make anyone in Israel or in the West safer? Will any of it help to foster peace between Muslims, Jews and Christians? Quite the contrary; it continues the radicalisation of Islam. It is not the way forward to establish co-existence and a long term peace.

The Jews are not special; they are not the chosen people as they like to claim. They are just like the rest of us, but unfortunately some of the worst and most extreme examples of Jewish humanity have ended up in Israel. Their actions are condemned by many leading Jews in the West who see the conduct of the Israeli government as great folly.

Israel is a frightening place at the best of times, with its young men and women walking around with dark glasses and machine guns, not only to tourists but also to the Arabs who have the misfortune to live under the Jewish Jackboot in the land that has been stolen from them.

If Israel wants to live in peace with its Arab neighbours, it needs to massively improve their standard of living and put an end to the Apartheid system that operates there. People who have a reasonable standard of living with jobs, enough food, housing, medical, schools for their children, and a stake in the future do not want to fire rockets and they donít want their neighbours to fire them either.

Peace can be achieved in this region but not by dropping bombs on a captive population.

2008 has gone; 2009 is here; 2010 is coming

What are you going to do this year?

Have you set your goals? Are they part of your long term goals; your five year plan?

Donít make silly resolutions; make sensible plans; set proper realistic targets. Slowly, slowly, catchy monkey. You donít want to be sitting here next year having achieved nothing, so make your list now and start working towards it. Start planning in detail how youíre going to get there and make 2009 your year.

Forget the wretchedness of the world put out by the doom and gloom pundits of the media, those vultures who thrive on the misery of the world. Look to your own world and make something of it.

A few ideas:

Learn to play a few tunes on a musical instrument
Read 50 books
Get a better job; study for a new career
Go on a couple of holidays; climb a mountain or two
Start learning a language
Eat better; drink less
Learn to ski
Run a few miles; a half marathon; a whole marathon
Get a qualification or two
Raise money for a charity; help a local charity
Learn to paint
Go biking in the mountains
Spend more time with your family
Start your own business
Write that book
Renovate your house
Rule your mind; rule your life

Make your own list. Write everything you can think of from the sublime to the ridiculous, and then choose a few. You never know what might come out and what you are capable of when you put your mind to it. We can achieve whatever we want to.

All thoroughly Rotten Apples

Fifty Billion dollars; $50,000,000,000; $50 billion. Madoff with. Thatís a lot of money. Thatís a staggering amount of money. Never to be seen again. Surely it hasnít all disappeared? How has it gone, how lost? Does his wife and children have it all?

Banks, institutions, the public, financial authorities all blind to the fraud. All conned. All the checks, balances, watchdogs; fooled. All too busy doing what exactly? Sleeping? Theyíve all been asleep at their highly paid posts. Thatís the problem when you pay people too much they donít care. Theyíve got far too much money to care because if they lose their job they get a handsome payoff, live off their fat for a while and then get another lucrative job with one of their equally useless buddies. Itís been going on for years and it is still going on. The same useless, incompetent, overpaid suits are still in their jobs in the fraud offices, the watchdogs, the regulators, the financial institutions, so nothing will change. Weíll be back where we were in 10 years time. The pigs will have their snouts firmly back in the trough in fact if you could take a peep into the financial sty you would see many already gobbling up the money governments are handing out in a effort to stabilise the economies. Yes even governments have been conned into dishing out your money to the greedy, useless, self-serving swine that got us into the mess in the first place and when all that money has been devoured what will we do then?

I havenít trusted people in Finance since the Dot-Com bubble burst and 75% of the value of my technology shares disappeared overnight. Funnily enough the head of the fund where my money was invested was paid a £5 million bonus the same year I lost my money, which is why I have never invested again. If you donít know the financial markets inside out and you canít afford to happily lose money, I would strongly advise you to leave you money in Savings accounts up to the amount that is guaranteed.

Basically the Financial Institutions have become legalised fraud, deregulated by successive governments to help their friends in the city and eventually to help themselves when they leave politics for a lucrative job with one of their friends in the city. These institutions are no longer there to provide an honest service to the public but rather to relieve you of your money permanently if they can. If enough of us stay away from the stock market and other dodgy financial packages on offer we may see the back of many of these be-suited conmen and women who leech off the ordinary people of the world. You never know, we may even see prudence and integrity return.

Christmas 2008

Christmas can be a stressful time for many people and perhaps even more so this year of the credit crunch where people are losing their jobs and their homes. I believe Christmas this year should be one of restraint for all of us, to show respect to those who have fallen on hard times and to all those people who are less well off throughout the world.

Christmas is a time of giving and we should give some of our excess to help others who are less fortunate. Drink and eat a little less, spend a little less on presents, and give what you save to help the needy. If we all just gave £5 or £10 of what we save or whatever you can spare that would amount to a small fortune to help our fellow man and you would be a better person for it. Tell people this is what youíre going to do, get others to do the same, pass on the word, letís start a small revolution and put Christianity back into Christmas. Make sure your donations go to a reputable charity, perhaps a local one as charity does begin at home. Act now, time is short.

If you could also spare a little time you could go and help your local charity to ensure that others have some sort of Christmas cheer. I guarantee you will meet some fascinating people and enjoy the experience. Or if you know someone who is going to be on their own, can you make some time for them? You can make a difference not only to others lives but also to your own. It will get you out of the house, away from the relatives, the drink, cigars, the boring TV shows and the endless snacks. You will come back refreshed and perhaps with a new outlook on life which you can carry into your New Year.

Whatever you do this Christmas have a peaceful one and remember it doesnít take much from us to make a happy Christmas for others but you have to act now.

Time for change at the BBC
The BBC has lost its way and become bloated on too much licence payers money. Our money. It has used that money to put on down market shows that appeal to the masses and by doing so it has virtually destroyed commercial TV, the true domain of low quality TV.

The Jonathan Ross debacle has put the spotlight on the BBC and we now see how it squanders our money and has forgotten that it was established to set a standard for society. There seems to be no control over salaries at the BBC. Hundreds of executives are on large 6 figures salaries with the chief, Mark Thompson, on £800,000, £450,000 more than Greg Dyke. Their Ďnobleí gesture of waiving their bonuses last year was easy to do as they already had a massive bonus in their salary. Thatís one hell of a pay rise. I didnít vote for it, did you? As for paying that crude, immature, oaf Jonathan Ross £6m a year; it is an insult to humanity and to all of us that want to live in a better society.

Aside from the numerous overpaid executives there are far too many overpaid presenters who do very little for huge rewards, presenting garbage shows. Also do we really need so many news readers? Why does it take two of them to read an autocue on the six o-clock news? I imagine there are millions of people who would happily do these jobs for a fraction of what these presenters get paid and do it just as well. Unlike the real world once youíre in with the crowd at the BBC you have a job fore life and you can get your friends and relatives jobs as well.

Now the BBC is under scrutiny lets us hope that some far reaching changes are made before the spotlight moves on and the BBC goes back to its nice cosy world. They need to sweep out the executives and producers that treat us all with contempt, who think they are radical and avant-garde, but have in fact just taken the BBC downmarket because they are lazy and bereft of ideas. The BBC does not have to be all-inclusive, it does not have to appeal to the club 18-30 mentality, it needs to raise the bar not lower it to the gutter. It is not edgy humour to swear all the time and make crude remarks; you can hear that in the playgrounds and on the streets throughout Britain. People with a modicum of intelligence do not think it is cool. That is why the executives and producers at the BBC have to be removed as they are totally out of touch with their audience. This isnít about being puritanical or boring middle aged and middle class, it is about what sort of society we want in the UK. Do we want all out sex, drink and drugs, the leery, bleary world of the club 18-30 which has made us socially the pariah of Europe or do we want a mature, sophisticated, adult society where we can all grow culturally?

The BBC is a great institution; the Radio alone is worth half the licence fee although it doesnít get anything near that. They need to cut costs, the bloat of executive pay, presenters, trips around the world for huge teams of people etc, etc and spend it on better programming. The Government needs to get rid of Mark Thompson and put someone in who has the guts to sweep out the old guard and bring in people who will put back quality programming throughout the schedules.

Jonathan Ross - foul-mouthed oaf
If you read the transcript of Andrew Sachs episode you will see that it is actually Jonathan Ross who is egging on Russell Brand. It is Ross who shouts out that Brand has had sex with Sachsí granddaughter. It is Ross that leads the way.

Jonathan Ross is a middle aged pervert with absolutely no talent. Mentally he has never grown up. He thinks his puerile humour is somehow edgy when it is something that most of us grow out of in our teens. If this crude oaf worked in an office he would be sacked for being a sexist pig and rightly so but we put up with him on our TV screens. Legislation is trying to make society a better place for men and woman to work together and it is undermined by crass morons like Jonathan Ross. Bernard Manning may have died but he lives on in Jonathan Ross although that is a bit harsh on Manning. Manning was held in contempt by people at the BBC but they have their own version in Ross. At least Manning was a comedian.

Jonathan Ross said in the transcript that Sachs Ďprobably had a picture of his granddaughter by the phone when she was 9 and remembered her like that and now that memory would be forever pollutedí. What sort sick, sadistic, mind thinks of something like that? Ross has got children himself does he think of them like that? There is a really nasty undercurrent in all this, it is not edgy humour; it smells of a rotten human being. I think it reveals the true person that Ross is and that he needs medical help. They say that money corrupts and I think the corruption in Ross is deep-seated. He is a prime example of a disgusting human being with a corrupt nature who should not be put on our TV screens.

Brand had the decency and the guts to resign which I admire him for but I canít see Ross resigning as he is gutless and there is not a hint of decency in him. Ross needs to do something different in life, rediscover his better side. Let us hope he has some true friends left who can advise him to take the right course. As he is he is no good to himself and no good to anyone else. Iím sure no-one will miss him once heís gone from our screens in fact we might get a decent film to watch on a Friday night.

Old Blogs

Three men in a yacht
It is funny, itís hilarious. Mandelson is back and the Conservatives are in trouble, looking pretty green and shame-faced. We could all enjoy a laugh and at the moment we are in desperate need of one but there is a very serious a side to all this. How all our lives are infected by these shady deals on private yachts, how the political process and all of us are demeaned.

It beggars belief how politicians are able to get away with it. Mandelsonís role in this whole sorry tale was hardly scrutinised by the BBC, they concentrated on George Osbourne instead. Is the BBC afraid of Mandelson and the government? Has the BBC become spineless in their reporting, afraid to lose their licence fee? At one time the BBC was the envy of the world for its unbiased reporting, now it appears to be colluding with the Labour government. It used to help form public opinion through investigative journalism, now most its journalists appear to be employed because they look attractive and can read an autocue. The cosy, self satisfied world of the BBC, where everything is rosy and they donít want to rock any billionaire boats may partly explain why there isnít more public outrage at this corruption, why we not demanding that Mandelson and Osbourne resign. For the question must be asked what would the Russian billionaire get out this. What was going to be offered in our name?

Politics has become very dirty again and we have got to the stage of shrugging our shoulders and accepting everything. Incidents like this just serve to cheapen politics even more. It is a dangerous state of affairs when the public no longer care about the integrity of the people that lead us. In the past the slightest whiff of corruption and scandal would have seen politicians resigning; now they just brazen it out. Are these really the people we want to see leading are country, being paid by our taxes?

(Mandelson was paid £100,000 of tax payersí money for resigning his EU Commissionerís job and additional fifteen thousands for relocating. Thatís the official figures; god knows how much more heís had. I donít get paid money when I resign a job, why the hell should he. Have we got money to throw about or has the world gone mad?)

Madonna Money Madness
Madonna and Ritchie to divorce. Who cares about them? Whoís interested in them? Why are they in the news? The only reason is because they have far too much money given to them by a gullible Joe public who believe all the hype about their supposed talents, who are dazzled by their wealth, by all their shiny bits of metal. (Who the hell pays £200 to see her in concert? Sheís only a pop singer. Just think of what good you could do with that money.) Madonna has some talent for pop music which she has made go a long way, Ritchie has no talent at all; his films are shite. The only reason he is in the film business is because he has rich parents who could afford to fund his exploits, a little rich kid. Madonna I think got an award once for the worst actress of all time which would be about right. They are so full of themselves, believe so much in their own self promotion that they canít see they have very little ability and none of their entourage, their sycophantic hangers on, have the guts to tell them.

I think Madonna is so far up her backside that she is turning into a female version of Michael Jackson, a total goof ball. The problem is that they set a dreadful example to others; when theyíve had enough they can just walk out, split up and leave the kids. Everything has a price to them marriage, parenthood, children but no value. Everything can be easily discarded and paid for like her little black kid from Africa, her fashion accessory, her newest fad. This is where she is goofy like Jackson and his kids, if she really wanted to do some good, to help in Africa why didnít she fund a school, a hospital, clean water instead of buying a kid from its father? Buying children because itís trendy is not something sane, level headed people do. Look at Bill Gates he aims to try to eradicate certain diseases with his wealth, now thatís visionary.

Last time I saw Madonna in a Pop video she was wearing a leotard and trying to look raunchy, I shudder with horror just thinking about it. We laughed at the time but on reflection there comes a time in a womanís life when leotards are out. She needs to grow old gracefully; all the exercise is making her look exceedingly unattractive and masculine. As Jackson tried turning into a woman, Madge is turning male. Youíd think that with all her money she could pay for some proper advisors or have one or two true friends who would be kind but it is like the fairy tale ĎThe Emperorís New Clothesí no-one wants to tell her.

Payback for the liars
Colin Powell, a republican, has come out in favour of Barack Obama, a big blow to McCainís campaign. He also picked up one of the major problems with McCainís bid for power is his choice of running mate, Sarah Palin, who as he says, is not ready for the Whitehouse. Some may say Colin Powell has backed Obama because he, like Obama, is black, but I think it goes a lot deeper than that. General Powell is in his seventies and has been a wise statesman for many of those years. He has been at the heart of government, seen and done much and been an advisor to the president. A man such as this does not say things lightly and certainly not based on the colour of his skin.

He believes like the rest of us that Obama represents change and a new start for the USA but also that Obama will try to extricate the American troops from Iraq before any more are killed in this futile act of imperialism, this contemptible oil grab, or at least put in place an exit strategy that all sides can sign up to. He knows now that the USA went into Iraq under false pretences, knows that he was conned by the right wing Hawks and the strong Jewish lobby into signing up to an attack on Iraq that should never have happened. He was lied to by the secret service, the military, and the Republican government about the capability of Iraqís weaponry much the same as people were in the UK. Now the opportunity has come to make some amends, by helping rid America of its war mongers so that it can return to its rightful place as the leader of the free world and give us all hope for the future.

Racism alive and well in the USA
It is frightening to see how far adrift America has become from its own ideals. America was and should be and still portrays itself as the most forward thinking, the most liberal country in the Western world. A country that prided itself on bringing in the poor and the homeless from around the world to build the country. ĎGive me your tired, your poor/Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free/The wretched refuse of your teeming shore/Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me/I lift my lamp beside the golden door!Ē. This written on the Statue of Liberty, a beacon of hope to the world, of culture and democracy, like the Colossus at Rhodes once was for Greece. America the land of the free, where men and women have equality, and people of all races and religions are equal. A country that fought a civil war and two world wars for individuals rights and freedoms. To see the country go from this to the spectacle of people at McCain rallies calling for Obama to be killed or his head cut off is quite frankly an absolute disgrace and a shame on such a great nation. To see the Republican election campaign playing the race card in all but name is a sad day for America and for the Republican Party.

I think McCain is a decent man but he has proved to be weak, unable to stand up to the right wing of his party, the people who got America and the World into such a mess, not only the credit crunch but war in Iraq. He stood as a maverick, he was his own man but this has proved not to be the case. He now looks indecisive, a ditherer. I believe the election has proved too much for him whereas Obama is calm, cool and collected, a giant in comparison. McCain should have made it blatantly clear that anyone who expressed such racially motivated and disgusting views were not welcome in the Republican Party and should be forcibly ejected if need be. A show of strength on this point would have won him many friends. There is no room in politics or anywhere in society for racism. America must go forward, must be that leading light again or the terrorists will have won through the back door. If America falters here then we in Europe should look to ourselves.

Well dressed and spoken Crocodiles
There is something absolutely obscene about how much the people in financial institutions earn and not just those at the top. (Iíll not go into the Christian and moral side of this, suffice to say that half the world is staving.) Doesnít it ever make you wonder whether you should be giving any of them your hard earned cash? You give them your money and they pocket multi million pound bonuses, you get a few pounds in interest or dividends. It doesnít seem like a good deal to me. Surely there are some honest financiers and bankers out there who will look after our money and not pay themselves extortionate amounts of money, who will accept a reasonable reward? We, the public, should vote with our money and only go to institutions where they show probity. When people are paid this much they donít care about you and me and our little lives, they are literally laughing all the way to the bank. They see it as their personal piggy bank which they can dip into whenever they like and take out fistfuls, bucketfuls of our money. We are now paying for it again while they are immune to financial woes. We cannot expect to pay people huge amounts of money and for them to act reasonably. Why should they? There is no risk to them involved. I urge everyone to find alternative means of investing and saving and not give it to these greedy bastards who in the end will leave you with nothing and be totally indifferent to your plight. These much vaunted money men and women of our society, who apparently we couldnít possible live without, have the morals standards of crocodiles but with sharper teeth.

Richard Fuld, the disgraced head of Lehman Brothers, when questioned about his exorbitant earnings, disagreed with his interrogators and seemed affronted when they said he had taken $500 million in salary and shares, he said it was only $400 million. Well thatís all right then.

Modern Day Vultures
Credit Crunch. End of the World. Things will never be the same. The party is over. Doom and gloom. Donít you just hate journalist and the media in general? They are licking their lips and wetting their respective knickers or pants over the current financial crisis. Have you ever seen them looking so happy? Their time has come. They have reached their Nirvana. While we are all going down the pan they are whooping it up. Their jobs secure, never more secure than when the rest of us are in trouble. They talk up the crisis, make it 100 times worse, they bring in a raft of so called experts that know jack shit, stir it up, frighten everyone and get paid a fortune for reading an autocue. The awful part of it in the UK is that we pay for the major exponents of the art of make believe, the BBC. We pay for these geeks out of our licence fee as they rub their hands with glee. The trouble is with journalist, like bankers, they are vastly overpaid for their talents (being able to read big letters/being able to add up) and therefore vastly exaggerate the issues but whereas bankers only got a few basic sums wrong i.e. ĎYou earn £2,000 a month, I can give you a £500,000 mortgageí, journalists are in the limelight and have to keep the lies and misinformation rolling in. These scavengers, these vultures, have an interest in keeping and making the news as bad as possible. These self important, over blown, silly and obnoxious individuals that read the news, 24hr news now, should get themselves proper jobs, where they are making a contribution to society not parasitically feeding off it. There is a place for proper journalism, for investigative journalism, the sort of journalism that might have stopped the greedy excesses in the first place but like all good honest professions in society it has been invaded and taken over by the useless, time-serving, money-grubbing brigade, by the people who are all mouth and no substance.

Time for a change
The Labour Party in this country and the Republicans in the United States have been in power for too long. Both countries need a change of direction, a new impetus that will come from a fresh start and fresh faces. It will help to put confidence back into the markets and make people feel better. When parties have been in for so long they get tired and sleazy. They are surrounded by all their sycophantic friends in business and in politics; people theyíve done favours for, people they hope will do favours for them in the future. It is not only a change of party that is required, it is a clearing out of all these hangers on, all these people in sinecures, all these people who have never done a days work in their lives, advisors, mentors, specialists, gurus, think tanks and all the rest of them.

It is not Gordon Brown who is solely the problem for the Labour Party; it is all of them, all of their smug, irritating faces who have let the financial system go into freefall under their watch. It is he same in the United States, the people need to get rid of the Republican Party and all its hangers on, a total change from the past. Get rid of these people who presided over the collapse of the banking system. I am sure they are sick of seeing the same people in the US as we are over here.

It is a time for extra ordinary people, not for the ordinary Ďhockey momsí; high office should never be for Mr or Mrs Average and never for an ignorant pig in high heels and lipstick. Sounds like something out of Animal Farm. Come on America, your chance for change is up first. Donít let the rest of the world down. Vote for Obama and lead the way for the rest of us. Obama is the way forward for making America great again. Rooseveltís election in the 1930s spelt the end of the Great Depression, letís hope Obamaís election will be the turning point in this financial crisis.

Fuedal Britain
If you ever wonder why people think all politicians are slimy, corrupt and self serving you only have to look at what happened today; Peter Mandelson being brought back into government. Here is a man who was sacked twice before for dodgy dealings. His reward? A very cushy job in Europe as a commissioner. In the wonderfully democratic United States of Europe these European commissioners are not elected. They are given these lucrative positions, not based on ability, but because they are the political chum of someone high up in government. Who pays for them while they are on the European gravy train? Why you and me the taxpayer. Now he has been rewarded again, a Lord no less, sitting amongst the other nobles such as Jeffrey Archer. It is like living in a feudal system again where the people in power hand out top jobs to their friends. Perhaps the feudal system never went away we just imagined it had. If there was ever a reason for an elected upper house, this speaks volumes.

Has Mandelson been brought back to help Britain in its hour of need; to save Britain from the Credit Crunch? Was that what was in Gordon Brownís mind in his reshuffle of his cabinet? How he could make redress for the dreadful mess he has made of the economy? Not on your nelly. Mandelson has been brought back to try to save Gordonís job. Brown the great leader, who, if he had any compunction, any circumspection, any remaining shreds of decency, should resign immediately. Instead he brings back someone even he cannot stand in the hope that the great plotter, the spinmeister general, Mandelson, can manufacture a win for Gordon at the next election. Brown is no good as Prime Minister and has been proved to be no good with the economy. The rest of the cabinet reshuffle was meaningless; it is the same old smug faces that we are all heartily sick of. It is not only Gordon that we need to get rid of; we need to get rid of whole government. It has run out of steam. We need a change, new blood, renewed hope not sleazy faces from the past.

Tony Blair versus Churchill
Cherie Blair compared her husband Tony to Churchill today. What an insult to Churchill, one of the greatest and most charismatic leaders this country has ever had. Cherie and Tony, if he believes it, must be totally and utterly deluded. It just shows how being in power affects judgement and mental ability. Let us just look at some of the facts. Churchill steered this country through one of its darkest times, through a horrific war not of his making, against an enemy that was a threat to all mankind. Bombs rained down, Britain was cut off but Churchill stood firm and was a beacon of hope to everyone. He was also a great strategist and negotiator. In peacetime he was perhaps not so successful but ĎCometh the hour cometh the maní.

Tony Blair on the other hand led us into an unnecessary and illegal war by using misinformation to persuade parliament that we were in imminent danger. A war that we are still paying the price for and we will continue to pay for many years to come. Many innocent people have died because he didnít have the courage to stand up to Bush and insist on negotiating with Saddam, the Westís natural ally. The blood of these innocents is on his hands including David Kelly who tried to tell the truth and was driven to suicide by the Blair spin machine.

After 10 years of Tony Blair the political process and politicians have been diminished even further in the minds of the general public. The constant spin or to give it its correct name, lying, from his press office has blackened the reputation of all politicians. Any trust in the political process has disappeared and there is a great disconnect between the government and the people, hence the low election turnouts.

Tony Blair has diminished the role of Prime Minister in this country. He was not a statesman like Churchill with iron resolve but an oily salesman, bending whichever way the wind blew, saying whatever anyone wanted to hear. He managed to stay in power for so long because the Conservatives had self destructed over Europe. All the money that the country earned in the fat years he squandered and we have very little to show for it and now we have the credit crunch.

Blair I believe will make a sorry footnote in History. He is an example of how the quality of our politicians has declined. For many it is now a career, a job, something to do to earn money and kudos, not a calling. As for his wife let us hope that no other Prime Ministerís wife becomes so prominent. Tony Blair was elected not his family. She was not an asset to him in his role as Prime Minister; she showed immense greed and lack of judgement and continues to do so whenever she opens that large mouth.

I am surprised to see that people still think that the West should pull its troops out of Afghanistan. Iraq may have been a war too far in that it was fought for the wrong reasons against a dictator and regime who would have been the Westís natural ally against Al Qaeda specifically and Islamic terrorism generally. Saddamís government was secular and he would not have allowed terrorist groups or any militants within his borders as he would have seen them as a threat. As a dictator he was no worse than many of the other dictators that the West happily trades with now. The vacuum he has left will never be filled successfully by a democratic state. There is too much hatred in the region.

Afghanistan is a different matter altogether. This was regime change for a moral reason and is commendable if we can ignore the fact that America armed the Taliban in the first place. The Taliban are not fighting a holy war or for their homeland, they are just ignorant, evil, men who want power. We must never forget the sheer terror and destruction they brought when they were in control. They stopped all education, women had to stay at home, they couldnít even work to feed their children and rule was by the whip and gun. They even destroyed the ancient historical sites. Now they brainwash the very young, men and women, and the mentally challenged into becoming suicide bombers. They are an evil force in the world who we must never allow back into power.

It is short-sightedness to call for our troops to withdraw. Afghanistan would be become one huge terrorist training camp and poppy production would go up (although it doesnít seem to have gone down much under the Americans but thatís another story). Pakistan would then fall and rest of the region would go up in flames and we would be drawn into a situation 100 times worse than the current one especially as Pakistan and India are nuclear powers. Aside from the morality of saving the majority Afghan population from the Taliban, it is not in the Westís interest to withdraw at this time. We must hold firm.

Financial meltdown
As the banks collapse and the financial markets tumble what can we say is the major cause? I can sum it up in one word, Greed. The people in the financial institutions have had their noses in the trough for a long time with multi million pound bonuses every year. With that sort of financial reward no wonder they took their eye off the ball, got lazy and basically didnít do their job. They say that the financial packages they were dealing in had become too complex to understand and that had caused the problem. Surely that is why they were paid so much so that they would make the effort to understand them otherwise any of us could have done the job.

It is unfortunate that the people who get hurt in the long run, by this all consuming greed, is you and me, who donít get million pound bonuses every year for making deals that border on corruption. It is a pity that none of them can be held accountable for this financial meltdown. Governments removed the legislation for their financial friends so they could make more money and this is the consequence of unregulated markets but no-one is accountable. Wherever there is that sort of money sloshing about in the system which results in multi million bonuses there will be corruption, greed and consequences for all of us. We look to governments to protect us, we look to banks and other financial institutions to set a high standard but we have been sadly let down. We should be very wary about trusting any of these so called experts in the future. We need to see regulation in the market as these so called respectable people cannot be trusted. We cannot allow them to gamble with all our lives and all our futures. We must hold governments to account to enforce legislation and all that spare money in the system can be used for building a better society not given to greedy, crooked, individuals.

Europe and the USA
If you ever wondered what separated Europe from the USA apart from the Atlantic you need look no further than Sarah Palin. She could be something that was dreamed up by Michael Palin and the Monty Python team but unfortunately she is real. An anti-abortionist, gun crazy woman in Europe who believes in creationism would be borderline sectionable under the mental health act. She probably wouldnít be allowed into any political party including the Raving Loony Party let alone get into any office in central government. (although maybe she would fit into the European parliament as there are a fair sprinkling of MEPs that are barking. There must be look at some of the laws theyíve passed).

It is a sad day for America that this has come to pass; they have certainly lost their way and our becoming a joke nation that cannot be taken seriously. Can you imagine if McCain becomes President and being an old boy something happens to him and Palin takes over? ĎA hockey momí who believes in creationism? It is back to the dark ages, witch hunts and Salem all over again.

We need America to set a glowing example to the world again; to lead, to take the moral high ground, to show strength with patience and to have the vision for a better future for all mankind. To do this they need great statesmen and women. Barack Obama I believe is young, fresh and dynamic and could become a great statesman. I think America will get a new start through him. McCain, on the other hand, with his choice of Palin shows that he lacks basic judgement and that if America chooses him they are voting for the status quo, nothing will change. I hope America will vote for change.

European Parliament
I believe in free trade within Europe if not throughout the world as it would help third and second world economies to catch up and then we wouldnít need to spend so much in overseas aid or take in so many destitute people. It may also help us to see that our future lies with Europe and not with the USA and its rabid right wing politics.

What I donít agree with is the European Parliament which is a top heavy, overblown, corrupt institution that feeds off our taxes. With all things where there are vast amounts of money involved there is corruption as with football and the Olympics now. If the European Parliament was subject to business rules it would have been closed down a long time ago as it has never had a set of accounts passed by the auditors. The accountants refuse to sign off the accounts as there are millions that are just not accounted for. Yes not hundreds of thousands which would be bad enough but millions. The financial management should be a great deal more stringent than any business in the private sector as this is public money. When a whistle blower informed Kinnock of the corruption and mismanagement, what did he do? reward her and sort out the issues? No, he sacked her. Kinnock or Lord Windbag to give him his popular name, had his wife and family working in lucrative jobs in Europe as well as his dentist, and he was one of the better commissioners.

The other problem with the European Parliament relates to how distant it is from everybody. Ask anyone who there European representative is and 9 out of 10 wouldnít know and what is more worrying, wouldnít care. Power is being removed more and more from people at a local level and being transferred to Brussels. We mustnít allow this to happen. Just look at the Lisbon treaty, the Irish voted Ďnoí, that should have killed it but they will have to vote again until they say Ďyesí or it will go ahead without them. Some democratic Europe that is! Gordon Brown and his gutless cabinet, that cling to their ministerial jobs at the expense of their conscience, just sneaked the treaty in the back door with no say for people in this country even though a vote was promised in their manifesto.

Until the European parliament cleans up its act with regard to its financials and until it becomes more transparent in its dealings we should fight to ensure that no more political integration goes ahead or you can kiss goodbye to ever having a say in your affairs again.

Miliband the Nerd

I bet Vladimir Putin is shaking in his boots now that David Miliband has turned up in the Ukraine to tell him off. Looking every bit the schoolboy and lacking all gravitas as a diplomat, he is an actual embarrassment to the UK. The UK has no power on the world stage any more, we cannot make threats. To think of the statesmanlike foreign secretaries we have had in the recent past, James Callaghan, David Owen, Douglas Hurd, Robin Cook, Jack Straw etc and now to end up with this silly boy is a disgrace. He looks and is totally out of his depth.

It is the sign of a party that is in disarray and lacking in ideas that they can put this nerd up as an alternative to Gordon Brown. At least Tony Blair had undeniable charisma and worked as a lawyer and so knew a little bit about the world, whereas nerdy Miliband has never worked. He owes his political seat and position in respect to his left wing father not to anything he has ever done in life, the same goes for his brother Ed, but then the Labour Party is full of nepotism and corruption. They like to keep it in the family like the royals. It is all just too easy for this lot once they get into power. If they are not setting up lucrative deals while they are in power, they are ensuring that they get a few cushy jobs once they leave. I donít like politicians and I donít like Gordon Brown but I would rather him any day compared to that felt haired nerd Miliband. He definitely gets into my top 100 people with faces Iíd like to slap.

Russia, Georgia and the USA

Why is the USA making deals with ex Eastern Bloc countries? Why is it stirring up a new cold war? Is it to take the Americanís peopleís minds off the credit and economic crisis at home caused by the greed of the financial institutions? Russia has every right to feel aggrieved at this interference in its own back yard. America wouldnít tolerate it so why should Russia? Russia is no immediate threat to Europe but they can become one through US provocation. It is not America that will feel the brunt but us in Europe. Poland, Georgia and other naÔve states that believe they can take on the Bear and trust the US to help them when they get into trouble will be sadly let down. We in Europe should be encouraging Russia as we have just been encouraging China, through the Olympics; and lets face it Chinaís human rights record is a damn sight worse than Russiaís in modern times. Russia is Europeís natural ally not the US but the US would hate to see a strong Europe that included Russia. We need to continue to help Russia into the modern age and towards democratic reform, not alienate them. The future is economics and big trading blocks but the US wants to hold on to its declining economic power and seeks to make mischief and drive a wedge between Europe and Russia. We must not allow this to happen.

George Bush is probably the worst and most dangerous US president America has ever had. Saddam being a Sunni and with his secular government was the Westís natural ally against Iran and militant Islam in general. Bush destroyed him to steal Iraqís oil but in the process unleashed Al Qaeda on the world. Bush and America is the enemy of democracy and now it is meddling in Europe. We must stop them. We must not be allowed to be fooled by the press and the politicians again. America can be Europeís friend again but is now in the hand of the hawks, the right wing extremists and the Israelis. We need America to come back to lead the democratic world, to show the way to the future. Hopefully Barack Obama can do that.