Saturday, 25 April 2009

Labour's only growth record - foreign crime gangs

In a peculiar piece of journalism by Sean O'Neill in the Times, in which he seems to claim to have obtained this report, published on HMIC's website, under an FOI request, the point of the report is entirely missed - as is what has been excluded from it.

Yes, there are 2,800 organised crime gangs operating in the UK. But to imagine they are the Krays, or the East End crime bosses of the 'Sweeney' is to miss the point. HMIC's report has been rigorously edited to exclude any mention of the fact that very many of these crime gangs are not native; Turks and Kurds run the heroin trade, south-east Asians do people trafficking and kidnappings, Russians and Bulgarians manage the brothels, Albanians peddle children and forge documents. The explosion in immigrant crime gangs under Labour is costing tens of billions a year, but like many other failures they will not admit this one. You will ask what evidence do I have for these accusations?

Well, the MPA doesn't censor its reports to the same extent that the Home Office does, and the many operational reports to the MPA such as this one detail precisely the origin of London's serious and organised crime sector. There are many more. You can find them all on the MPA's website. Albanians. Bulgarians. South-east Asians. Russians. That's just one sector of operations.

In 2008, some 14% of our prison population were foreign nationals. Whilst the prison population generally has risen 11% between 1996 and 2006, the number of foreign prisoners has risen 168%. Prison population stats from the Bromley Briefings.

We are facing an ever increasing threat from foreign crime gangs; this is not visible to most of us who have no contact with this milieu, but if their activities spill over into our lives we are ill-prepared to deal with it. The police have few contacts or 'windows' into their world. Proposals are for ever-more police resources to obtain and share intelligence, for specialist squads to target Albanian traffickers or Vietnamese smugglers.

Wouldn't it make more sense for Labour not to have let them all enter the UK in the first place?

Alan Duncan was crap on HIGNFY

He was so awful that at one point I actually squirmed in embarrassment. See it here.

As Hislop pointed out, for a man who describes himself as a libertarian to even mockingly threaten violence to anyone with an opposing view to his own on homosexual partnership rights undermines his credibility utterly.

Stick to the political class cocktail circuit, Alan.

It's now fine to call individual MPs thieves

There was a time not so long ago when a newspaper's lawyers would have given birth to kittens if a columnist called a minister a thief in his copy. Not only potential libel - but potential criminal libel, a far more serious thing, a criminal offence in itself, would earn the copy an automatic blue pencil.

No longer.

It is a measure of just how far the reputation of our Parliamentarians has fallen that it's now fine to call Jacqui Smith or Tony McNulty a thief in print. Peter Oborne does so in today's Mail:

The two main offenders are his shameless Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith, and his wretched Employment Minister, Tony McNulty, who last year claimed £12,600 worth of expenses on a property where his parents live, 11 miles from Westminster.

Instead, the Prime Minister defended these two thieves — and I repeat, if they wish to sue me for using that word, I look forward to seeing them in court.

So why have the print lawyers become so quiescent? I think I know.

First, in the matter of criminal libel, no sane person imagines that Smith or McNulty are being accused of an offence under s.1 of the Theft Act 1968. They are not being accused of having committed the criminal offence of theft, but of being thieves in the wider sense of the word.

No one imagines that the Thief of Time should be indicted under s.1, or the girl who has stolen my heart be compelled on conviction under s.1 to make restitution. Smith and McNulty are thieves in the popular, not the technical sense of the word. This deals with criminal libel - but what of civil-law libel? Isn't this still actionable?

Well yes. Except the author can claim that the use of the term is justified - a sound defence to an action for libel. And this is the nub. There's not a judge nor jury in the country who would not believe that Smith and McNulty are thieves in the popular sense of the word. It's true. The term is justified, and therefore not libellous.

So the papers, and the blogs, can now safely call any MP who has abused the expenses system a thief. The way is clear in July, when receipts are revealed, for the 'Sun' to publish an entire front page of MPs' mugshots over the headline THIEVES.

And there's not a damn thing they can do about it.

Friday, 24 April 2009

I don't do petitions either, but ....

I've signed this one on the Downing Street website, urging the Prime Minister to resign.

Let's see if we can get it up to a million.

(H/T both Guido and Iain Dale)

We WANT the Gurkhas here

Joanna Lumley's impassioned fisking of Brown's mealy-mouthed offer to ex-Gurkhas today takes some beating. The woman is a fireball, articulate, well-informed and with a commitment to the Brigade that is second to none.

Brown has opened our borders to the most useless, unskilled, incapable and most parasitic of the world's economic migrants who have no link to the UK; Somalis, Iraqis, Kurds, Albanians, Kosovans, Romanian gypsies and the entire African diaspora. Our entire annual output of social housing is insufficent to house them as they arrive. Twenty thousand Africans alone since 2001 in Lewisham borough.

Yet some immigrants create wealth, provide essential skills, contribute to national prosperity; Indians, north Americans, western Europeans including many Poles, Japanese and, yes, these tough little hillmen from Nepal. They've stood beside us in the line of battle for two centuries and served with exemplary bravery and loyalty. Over forty thousand of them have died under our colours. For Imphal and Kohima, battles as significant as Stalingrad or Thermopylae, we owe them everything. Sabretache will no doubt now give me a good bollocking for Jingoism, but, Hell, these people are our brothers and have more right to settle here with us than a million of Brown's unattached welfare dross.

With what we're going to have to face at home here over the next decades - Jihadism, food and energy crises, the dissolution of European Federalism and all the rest - I can take no greater comfort than having a few tens of thousands of trained Gurkhas standing with us, with sharp Kukris.

Brown and his bankrupt cabal must listen to the fragrant and impassioned Miss Lumley.

Cameron - abolition of 50p tax rate will have to wait

The abolition of the 50p tax rate will 'have to take its place in the queue' under a Conservative government, Cameron told 'Today' listeners this morning. Podcast not up yet. He said his priorities are reversing the tax burdens on those earning £21k - £22k.

Smart move. Only 300,000 voters earn over £150k, but millions of voters earn £21k.

You'd think there was an election in the offing, wouldn't you?

State Security - it's not just us, then

Proof, if it were needed, that events such as the Convention on Modern Liberty have brought together concerns on both the left and right of the political spectrum about the EU origin of much of what we regard as oppressive and intrusive interference with our freedoms comes in an excellent analysis by Statewatch of the return of the German internal State Security architecture to something not seen there since 1945.

Germany has already abolished the privileged status of journalists. Only clerics, defence lawyers and politicians are exempted from 'casual' (i.e. non-targeted) electronic interception and surveillance. German bloggers, of course, have no protection.

Read it, and be very afraid.

'The party's over' - but who will tell the ravers?



When Tony Crosland told local government in 1974 'The party's over' he took away the drinks and squeakers and turned out the lights lest there be any doubt he was serious. But partygoers are hard creatures to shift; in practice, they moved their party elsewhere, taking the Watney's Party Sevens with them (younger readers will not get this; a party seven was good reason in the '70s to carry a screwdriver and hammer with you in public).


It was Crosland's attempts to curb the excesses of local councils that led directly to Thatcher's emasculation of local governance from 1979; it was Crosland who started the move to State centralism that Thatcher built on in her battle with the loony left in the town halls. And from 1997 Labour have entrenched a Leviathan central State. The partygoers had just moved from town hall to Whitehall.

Local parks are a barometer of this shift. Older readers will remember when they had park keepers, rose beds, spectacular annual bedding displays, clean toilets and were places where parents could send unaccompanied children in the knowledge that they would be safe. This was before 1974. The spending cuts and the measures required by the IMF fell first on non-statutory local services such as parks. Today those local parks are sterile and barren expanses of turf 'n trees, with no dedicated staff, maintainable with a tractor and gang-mower, the toilets and tea kiosk boarded up or demolished, and crack-foil in the overgrown bushes.

Yet Whitehall has grown fatter and sleeker; a multiplicity of quangos, the breeding of a new species of on-message simpatico highly paid executives who seem to do no more than attend meetings and write reports to eachother.

And guess where all the cuts will fall this time? Yep, on stuff like local parks again. Local services that have the maximum negative impact will be targeted as proof that it's hurting. But the hidden, do-nothing world of Whitehall and quango insiders will continue untouched - for these are Labour's fifth column, a socialist Trojan Horse planted deep inside our public administration to foil and frustrate future reform.

Only a big-bang devolution of power from central to local has a hope of realigning our public services with the expectations of those that pay for them. Locally, no-one would vote for spending a million on a safe-drinking outreach and publicity unit if they could spend the same million on putting park keepers back in their local parks. The mismatch between real public priorities and the lunatic fads and whims of Labour's embedded public management culture has never been greater. And the need for real local democratic control and the smashing of Whitehall's target and command culture has never been more urgent.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

A travesty of Government

David Cameron was angry today, but the anger he exhibited was only a fraction of the anger I felt at this bankrupt and corrupt government; as Gordon Brown wore his now-familiar coprophage rictus grin, Cameron rightly shredded the deceit, pretence and lies behind this travesty of a budget by a travesty of a government. The dummies and puppets on the government benches, gloomy at the prospect of swapping their voracious troughing at the taxpayer's expense for doing an actual job of work come next year, failed even to flex their unexercised diaphragms to jeer; they know only too well that Cameron's words rang with truth.

Whilst Gordon Brown retreats ever further into some secret place inside his head, the face he presents to the world grows ever more bizarre. Not only the coprophage grin, but an infantile contraction into a foetal position on the Treasury benches, which the BBC camera captured. Perhaps the truth is penetrating even the formidable mental barriers that Brown has erected inside his head; that he has crushed, desolated, ravaged and plundered the British economy for short-term political gain, risible social engineering experiments and the imbecilic whims of third-rate ministers, and now the people of Britain are to pay the price.

These vile despoilers persist in the lie even at the eleventh hour; not a contraction of 3.5% of GDP, as Darling's phony figures forecast, but 4.1% according to the IMF. Not growth, but continued hardship, pain, struggle and angst for the people of Britain; a legacy of debt for our grandchildren and our nation's potentials ground in the midden of Labour's gross misrule.

As I watched those fat complacent faces, those vacant eyes dead as a mackerel's, those pasty sweating chins today on the Treasury benches, with Brown curled in his foetal comfort position, Balls tense with the fear of an ice-pick in his skull from the bench behind, Straw's porcine features distorted in alarm it reminded me of nothing more than the expression on the faces of the row of defendants in the dock at Nuremberg as prosecutors played footage of the extermination camps. The denial, the lies, the spin, the falsification could no longer hide the truth of the appalling reality of this government's malicious failure and negligence.

I would fling the whole foetid cabal into the darkest, dampest and deepest of dungeons, clothe them in vomit-encrusted alkies' rags and feed them on rancid minced turkey-skin for all eternity if I had a choice. I would put them to tramp in enforced silence on the treadmill. I would have them sew mailsacks or pick oakum until their fingers bled. I would have them sleep on straw palliases crawling with vermin. No, Cameron wasn't quite as angry as I was - but he came close;


Tuesday, 21 April 2009

£140 a night for MPs would be fair

Brown's proposals to replace the £23,083 second homes allowance with a fixed daily attendance allowance has many merits. First we must remember it isn't a daily attendance allowance, but a nightly accommodation allowance. Their daily attendance allowance is what their fixed salary is for. And to avoid the Brussels scandal of MEPs turning up for five minutes on a Thursday morning to sign for their daily allowance before going home for the weekend, I suggest MPs' allowances be based on a presumption of having spent the previous night away from home; i.e. those signing on Monday morning would be paid for Sunday night and so on.

I also suggest £140 a night would be a fair allowance. The House sat for 165 days in the 2007/2008 session; an MP attending each day would draw £23,100, identical to the current second homes allowance. £140 buys you a room in a central London Travel Lodge at short notice, an evening meal, breakfast and a cab fare.

Any more than £140 a night and we're into sleaze territory again. And any abuse by MPs of a professional signing-in process, such as signing in for each-other, must surely lead to requiring them to use fingerprint scanners or other such technology, or clock cards or some such.

They have one last chance to prove they can regulate themselves to our satisfaction. Let's hope they take it.

Is it any wonder Labour are scared of the BNP?

The Mail reports this morning that the Mayor of Calais blames the UK's generous handouts to 'asylum seekers' - economic migrants for the most part - for the hordes besieging her town. This is just common sense. The French have been saying for some years that we're the authors of our own misfortune. Free housing, healthcare, education and £42 a week each is a big deal for a village girl from West Africa.

Meanwhile in the budget, the Chancellor is set to announce a big rise in social housebuilding. But as Migration Watch have revealed, Labour's social housing completions have barely matched all the economic migrants they offer to house (graph below).

The effects of immigration may not be apparent to MPs as they enjoy their twenty weeks holidays a year, split no doubt between their second and third homes and sun-soaked 'factfinding trips', but the impacts are in the faces of British people every day. Is it any wonder that Labour fear a desertion to the BNP by their traditional voters?

Monday, 20 April 2009

Nick Brown next in the line of fire

With no apologies for referring to Peter Oborne for two posts on a row, his piece in the Mail this morning catalogues the desperate Labour in-fighting and the scalps being claimed by the Blairites, predicting Nick Brown will be next in the line of fire.

Excellent stuff.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

We must nurture these shoots of democratic renewal

Peter Oborne, seeming not at all out of place writing in this morning's Observer, says:
But at this grim moment in our national life, Britain doesn't just need a change of personnel at the very top. We urgently need a new decency and morality in government and to get rid of the stinking and corrupt regime that has brought the idea of British democracy into such deep disrepute over the last few years.
I started this blog with the intention of promoting exactly this message. The political class were corrupt and corrosive of democracy; the parties are dying, politicians are mired in greed and self interest, the civil service has become corrupted, State centralism is destroying the little platoons that are the root of decency and morality, government spin, lies, fraud, theft and gerrymandering is robbing us all of something of great value, the overbearing, bullying and intrusive State has abused its power. I think we've reached a turning point.

But the message hasn't yet reached the political class. The three main parties and their online and MSM dags are still pretending we're playing the party ping-pong of the sixties. Despite their joint memberships having fallen to just 1% of the UK electorate from around 11% in 1964. Even now, with the old political certainties crumbling around them, most have their heads thrust firmly in the sand.

The shoots of democratic renewal are not coming from the political class. They're exogenous, and they're coming from individuals of real courage and ability in public positions, from bloggers including Guido and scores more libertarian / anti-federalist writers, and from non-political commentators.

As Nick Drew commented on a previous post, Kier Starmer joins Sir Martin Scholar of the ONS as men of independent principle uncowed by the threats and bullying of the vile McBride and Brown's cabal of thugs. I also have hopes of Sir Paul Stephenson. And even Nick Hardwick, chair of the hitherto toothless tiger that is the IPCC, has said that the police must remember that they're servants, not masters. All are outside the political class. All are men of principle and integrity. As such they are now prime targets for Brown's smear machine.

Guido had a taste of this in yesterday's Telegraph, in a dirt-job under Gordon Rayner's byline but surely based on someone else's intelligence file.

So for all the Guidos, Nick Hardwicks, Kier Starmers and Martin Scholars out there - we're behind you. We value and appreciate your voices and your courage in speaking out. And our fury will turn on any who now contrive to smear, frame, discredit or silence you. The political class may remain mute, blind and deaf, but I think their day has come. Our voices are being heard. Our words are being read. The reform that Peter Oborne calls for is coming.