Monthly Archives: November 2016

Cause of a politician’s incompetence

From a comment by ‘Tcheuchter’ on the article ‘Conundrum’, a joke (which, not having heard it previously, is worthy of repetition):

While stitching a cut on the hand of a 75 year old farmer, whose hand was caught in the squeeze gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man.

Eventually the topic got around to politicians and their role as our leaders. The old farmer said, “Well, as I see it, most politicians are ‘Post Tortoises’.” Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a ‘post tortoise’ was.

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Ideas worthy of consideration?

Where the position of the UK – in their negotiations with the European Union – are concerned, two ‘papers’ have come to light which appear to have bypassed those with an interest in ‘matters EU’, in that I have seen no reference to them; especially in respect of Brexit and life thereafter.

The first, a paper authored by Rishi Sunak MP (Conservative: Richmond – successor to William Hague) details the ‘supposed’ advantages of ‘Free Ports’ and the trading potential contained therein. It is worth mentioning that Switzerland, being outside the European Union, has a ‘Free Port’ located in Geneva, albeit for works of art and ‘valuables’.

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A conundrum

From the Gatestone Institute comes an interesting article, one authored by Judith Bergman.

She poses the questions whether: (a) is it not time to review priorities in regard to citizenship for those who have chosen to fight against those countries whose citizenship they hold; (b) whether it it is time to rethink the idea, as enshrined in the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, which prohibits governments from revoking a person’s nationality if it leaves them stateless; and (c) that a terrorist is a poor, traumatized victim who needs help – which seems to be a recurring theme among European politicians – because he/she has a ‘right’ to that citizenship. But what about the rights of the poor, traumatized citizens who elected these politicians and who suffer from the actions of those who abrogated their citizenship in order to kill it?

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Vive la différence……….

On June 8th this year the following, by Phil Hendren, appeared on Facebook:

A week ago a mentally-ill person murdered people in a nightclub. When it was found that he ‘liked’ Islamist views, the Right leapt on it whilst the Left said it was irrelevant as he was mentally-ill.

Two days ago a mentally-ill person murdered another person in the street. When it was found he “liked” Neo-Nazi views, the Left leapt on it whilst the Right said it was irrelevant as he was mentally-ill.

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When do MP’s speak their mind?

Jess Phillips – Labour: Birmingham Yardley – has an article in the Guardian, one entitled: Jo Cox’s murder has left us MPs more fearful to speak our minds with a sub-heading: Online hatred, abuse and threats of violence to force politicians – female ones especially – to sing to a certain tune will be the death of our democracy.

Her article begins: Recently, I was in one of my weekly surgeries giving advice to local constituents when a man who was in a state of some distress leaned down to get something out of a holdall. I began to panic. It might be irrational, but since Jo Cox was murdered I have this feeling frequently. This week a local church called about my annual address at the Christmas carol concert. Every year I do a reading, never before have they called and asked me if they need to arrange a discreet police presence for my safety.

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That’s another fine mess you gotten us into……..*

When one considers the inane comments that are being emitted by our Members of Parliament where Brexit is concerned, those of us who understand ‘matters EU’ can only grow increasingly frustrated by the day.

From this source we are informed that the main functions of Parliament are to:

  • Check and challenge the work of the Government (scrutiny)
  • Make and change laws (legislation)
  • Debate the important issues of the day (debating) 
  • Check and approve Government spending (budget/taxes)

In order to do any of the above it is necessary that those performing the acts of checking and challenging the work of the Government, making and changing laws, debating the important issues of the day and checking and approving Government spending had any knowledge of just how to go about that. If only MPs had an understanding of the basics about which they would have us believe they do, perhaps we would not be in the mess that they have gotten us into.

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‘Labouring’ to keep the status quo – and are they not all ‘labouring’, regardless of party?

It is noted that Pat Glass MP has tabled a private member’s bill (which today had its second reading) saying officials must use the latest electoral register when drawing up new constituency boundaries,  which seems a logical suggestion; however she also wishes to keep the number of MPs to 650. The Hansard report of the ensuing debate can be found here. Never mind a ‘talking-shop, it seems ‘looking after number-one’ is more important; an accusation that could well be leveled in other directions where the introduction of direct democracy is concerned.

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Overstepping the ‘mark’?

According to this report it would appear that a senior judge who will be sitting as a member of the Supreme Court may have compromised her impartiality.

Lady Hale, the Deputy President of the Supreme Court, queried whether a “simple Act of Parliament” would be enough to give Theresa May the authority to kick-start the two year countdown to the UK leaving the European Union. Instead, she argued that the Government may have to come up with a “comprehensive replacement” for the 1972 European Communities Act, which authorised Britain’s membership of the then European Economic Community. She also stated: What has to be done instead is perhaps not so clear. But the case is destined for our court, so I must say no more.

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Laugh of the year?

I note that the Daily Telegraph now has a ‘premium’ level of access (£); however, there is a free level which affords users to one article per week. Having subscribed to this free access I promptly received an email from the Telegraph, part of which read:

Premium has been designed to provide exclusive online access to the highest quality journalism from the reporters and commentators at the heart of the story. [ ……….] Our team of award-winning writers, authorities and insiders offer you a unique perspective across all of the world’s most important stories……….. (emphasis mine)

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My patience is fast running out………

In response to this article I have submitted the following comment, which is subject to moderation:

Referring to your article, as someone whose work has focused on coalition governments and how the Civil Service works with political parties; social housing, green energy and property development sectors; and who has a BA in history and a MSc in Public Policy, would it be impertinent of me to ask how you can write on ‘matters EU’?

I ask the question as the most obvious ‘interim solution’ about which you write is for the UK to move to EFTA/EEA membership – an ‘off-the-shelf’ solution, one which is readily available and which would then allow for time to negotiate a ‘final solution’ – yet you fail to mention it. Why? Why would such an interim agreement be so difficult to achieve?

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