Saturday, 23 May 2015

My own red lines

Now I don't know with any certainty what Cameron's chances of success are, or what will be the likely shape of the offer on the table after the talking has ended. At the same time I have no fear of the UK's chances outside the EU and can happily ignore the scare mongering by the global corporates, for whom a Federal Europe would work very well. They'd only have to bribe one set of government officials, rather than 28, for a start. However, I'm not quite the Euro purist that those of us in the 'out' camp are often imagined. 

- I support absolutely the free movement of goods, business or personal, without tariffs or quotas, within a bloc of nations sharing minimum standards of public health and hygiene and in which commercial law operates effectively

- Likewise I support the free movement of people in Europe, subject always to being able to demonstrate that they have both accommodation and means of support in their target nation. EU benefits tourists must be stopped - and this includes paying child benefit to Poland or Romania. But no quotas or restrictions on EU28 citizens coming to the UK to take up a job. 

- Freedom to provide services; yes, absolutely. Other EU countries are far more restrictive and protectionist than the UK and we need to go on the offensive. Austria for example requires hairdressers to undergo a 3 year apprenticeship - and they produce naff and unflattering coiffures like those popular in 1950s Soviet Bulgaria. In the UK any 16 year old school leaver can set herself up as a hairdresser - and UK women's hairstyles lead the world. 

- Freedom of Capital - of course.

What I absolutely cannot stick, what is repugnant and loathsome and horrid beyond measure, is the creeping EU Federalism that daily leaks power, taxes and influence to a ghastly college of zombie unelected officials in Brussels. The Commission needs hitting heavily with a very large stick until every bone is shattered. They must be starved of tax money, denied status, derided and ridiculed, belittled and sidelined. Sovereignty must remain with Europe's 28 nation states, or at least ours must remain with us. 

And that's my bottom line. 

Friday, 22 May 2015

Extremism on TV?

Sometimes it's just about context. If Louis Theroux or Michael Crick interviewed a loony who advocated that homosexuals be identified and flung from high buildings, the barely disguised mockery and careful editing would leave the viewer in no doubt that the extremist was a pathetic specimen worthy only of derision and taunts. If the same loony were given a serious platform on 'Newsnight' to explain that the sanction was prescribed in Leviticus, in the bible that sits in every church in Britain, and invited to explain the need for a change in the law to allow bible-courts to execute homosexuals, if I had the slightest liking for show-tunes or interior design magazines I'd be very afraid. 

There is no doubt in my mind that the foul and loathsome Islamist Anjem Choudary should never have been given a platform on Newsnight. That it happened was a gross error of BBC judgement that should have seen high-level sackings. But to allow it to lead to the Home Office interfering in programme making? I don't think so. Sanctions exist already. OFCOM can withdraw or suspend a broadcaster's licence if the rules are breached - and a new OFCOM with teeth ordering BBC2 to stop broadcasting for 48 hours as a punishment sounds OK to me.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

New £20 note? Surely Hogarth is the safe bet

If it has to be an artist, and a dead artist, I am happy to go with Hogarth. For a start he had a clear voice and a message to speak. Secondly, his morality resonates today when bling, greed and ambition are still the ruin of young men. Thirdly, he's classless - unlike some sycophantic knight of a court painter. Anyone today from any background can identify the types limned in Hogarth's savage caricatures. And finally, the NG's portrait (left) is timeless and would engrave well. 

Sorry, no polemic on those noisome crooks of banksters - £50bn in fines and not one yet jailed. It's too much to satirise.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Global Corporates support EU shock

Is it just the BBC that's headlining the CBI story this morning? The online papers are silent on it. Anyway, the head of the CBI - the organisation dominated by global corporates, and of which not one of the entire executive tier has ever worked in Industry - has called on, erm, global corporates to publicly support the EU Federation. Many of the new generation of university vice-chancellors, grasping toads who have prostituted the UK's academic reputation for foreign fees and EU grants, have also joined the CBI. So no bias there, then.

This has got to be about the biggest non-story of the day, alongside "Prince Charles supports monarchy" and "Scientists confirm Arboreal defaecation habit by members of genus Ursidae".

Anyway, here are the current UK members of the European Round Table (which has fifty rotating members at any time) - the body the EU relies on for advice and counsel when making new laws that mostly, erm, favour the global corporates:-

Rio Tinto
Rolls Royce
Arcelor Mittal
BP

No doubt those stalwarts of the CBI don't see any conflict of interest here ...

Monday, 18 May 2015

I agree with Mehdi Hasan's piece in the Guardian shock

Mehdi pours criticism on all those who opine that what Islam needs is a Reformation. His piece in today's Guardian ripostes comments recommending an Islamic Martin Luther; Luther is the last thing Islam needs says Mehdi. I wholly agree. 

Islam is already split into Sunni and Shia sects; it doesn't need a Reformation that will split it further. No, what it needs now is say thirty years of savage civil war between the sects that will destroy 40% of the population - as we experienced in Europe - until both sides are exhausted and sick of blood and every violent warrior male has expired on the battlefield, altering forever the gene pool of the survivors.

Only then can Islam move into the sort of endogenous Enlightenment that it so desperately needs.  

Sunday, 17 May 2015

The only future for Labour

The Labour party in its current central Statist, socialist, redistributative, forced equality of outcome mode is dead. It's dead in Northern Ireland and now dead in Scotland. It's dying in the old industrial north of England, has been wiped even from rural England's county towns and it can't be long before they die finally in Wales. It was a party that needed a wartime central command economy in which to thrive; all the while the party could keep Britain as it was in 1947, with all the strings pulled in Whitehall, Labour worked. And now as we finally resile from that wartime administrative mode, seventy years after the last shots were fired, Labour's time is over.

However, there is one chance for the party to survive and it doesn't involve shuffling along the left-right axis further toward or away from the centre. It means moving on the other axis - the one with 'authoritarian' at one end and 'libertarian' on the other. Labour is an authoritarian party, but what fits in the leafy multi-kitchens of Hampstead may not take well in Leith or Llandrindod Wells or Taunton. The entire UK outside the North Circular is fed up with Labour nannying, fed up with being hectored by a bunch of uber-correct metropolitan bien-pensants soiling themselves on a diet of pomegranite pips, Piketty and quinoa.

There was a libertarian socialist movement in the UK that started to take hold just as authoritarian State Labour killed it. It involved John Lewis mutualism, co-operatives, friendly societies, insurance societies, family venture capital, ethical trade and business, training and employment. It was the sort of libertarian socialism that Ralph Harris, founder of the IEA, knew well in the poverty of London's pre-State Welfare East End. It was socialism not hostile to business but to the exploitative capitalism of the global corporates, a socialism that didn't involve State ownership of the means of production - and would rather have shoes made on lasts in a local family cobblers works than by slaves in China. Above all it was the kind of  socialism that just allowed ordinary people to live and work together profitably, look after each other, and advance and grow all without overweening interference from a prod-nosed State bureaucracy. And it was Localist. Libertarian socialists in Brixham didn't have to share the same priorities with libertarian socialists from Merthyr Tydfil.

Anything else for Labour now is just greed for power.