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Thursday 3 May 2018

....and they're off!

With polling stations about to open, reading the press you might wonder why bother to vote. It's a foregone conclusion, they say - a wipeout for Halal-Labour-Momentum, with the Tories kicked out of local government and Corbyn triumphant. Well, if you believe that old bollocks there's no hope. 

For a start, the pollsters can't call election results at the moment. Well, not to within +/- 10%, anyway. One issue is that people interviewed on mobile devices are less honest than those the pollsters used to call on what are now quaintly called 'home telephones'. The other is that IVR has removed 2m people from the voting rolls who should not have been there and added a missing 2m who should have been. 

I think the Halal-Labour swings will be less significant than thought but that Mrs May will still get a handbagging. Let's wait and see. The real test for me will be the turnout in the five test areas for voter ID. To those who aver that is no proven history of personation to justify such measures nationally, I say well, I'll bet you said that about child sexual exploitation in Rochdale, Telford, Oxford and all those other towns a few years ago. Not catching offenders doesn't prove that crimes aren't being committed. 

For those of you who have been out on the stump for UKIP or Conservatives or whomever, well done; you are the backbone of democracy. Win or lose, you've already won.  

These are the comment settings, all that Blogger has available. If anyone knows how to make verification even less onerous, let me know. Blogger also sometimes decides that comments from regulars are 'spam' and since I only look at this once a week or so to free the poor trapped things I apologise for tardyness. I tried Disqus for a while but you all hated it. 


Wednesday 2 May 2018

Yes, the Lords must go

I won't rehearse again the many failings of the political life peers, who like some malignant contagious disfigurement have destroyed the integrity of our upper chamber. Worthless dross, dags and liggers, spivs and crooks, the filth of their touch befouls anything good. And as Nigel Farage writes in the Telegraph today (£) the process of putrescence has accelerated under both Blair and Cameron - archly corrupt chisellers both, sofas and chums and honours for bribers, rent-seekers and hairdressers. I won't say it will be no pleasure; defenestrating the effete Andrew Adonis or the pervert Rennard will be fun. Calls will grow for abolition from all quarters, and the discussion must swiftly move to what we must replace it with. 

Clearly, electors will expect some say in who sits in a second house, but a national election list would be impossible to administer. People are also frustrated at the domination by the metropolitan political class. The CofE bishops must go - to retain them would be to open the doors to Muslims, Jehovah's Witnesses and Zoroastrians to be represented. However, there may be a place for some appointments made by an independent commission for which the most senior of the professions and the armed forces would be eligible. 

Here's an initial suggestion (% or senate, take your pick) -

English ceremonial counties (old Yorkshire ridings etc)    - 48
Welsh counties                                                                -  8
Northern Ireland                                                             -  5
Scotland                                                                         - 12
City of London                                                                -  1
Greater London (smaller than GLA )                                 -  6
Total 'elected'                                                                - 80
Appointments Commission                                               - 20     

If we assume that the Lords in its present form will go, and concentrate on with what to replace it, I think we'll be on the right track. 

If you haven't already signed the abolition referendum petition, I urge you to do so -

Monday 30 April 2018

Disfunctional mandarins must be culled

You could pretty much stop any 177 bus at random in south London and comb-out a dozen illegals. At least half of them would be Nigerian - overstayers who came on student visas in the nineties and noughties with places in august institutions such as the Imperial College of Law and Business, 14 The Parade, Catford (above Morley's Chicken). The scam was known to just about everybody in the country except, it seems, the mandarins at the Home Office. When faced with a shouty minister demanding deportation targets, instead of random immigration checks on London buses (I promise you, a guaranteed haul with every stop) the muppets deported black Britons from the Caribbean, many of them a damn site more British than I am if you count time served. 

These are the same Home Office muppets that ushered scores of ex-Iraqi tank drivers into the UK because they declared that they were children. As the entire nation shouted 'Ref!' as files of men in their thirties climbed smilingly into luxury coaches those Home Office mandarins asked 'what?' It took two years to admit quietly that most of these swarthy stubbled blokes were in fact adults. 

It takes a certain stubborn stupidity to make errors so gross, so culpable, so utterly mindlessly inane and keep on making them again and again, but the senior civil servants running the Home Office have made a career of it. The minister has had to go, of course, and this is right. But if one of her muppets had explained to her that they would be deporting
... Dexter Bristol, here for 51 years, who died a year after being pushed out of his job as a cleaner and forced into penury for lack of a passport. There’s Gretal Gocan, an 81-year-old NHS nurse and granny who made her life here over decades and is now living in Jamaica, in poverty and isolation from her family, after being refused re-entry in 2010. There’s Winston Jones, a former railway worker evicted from his house shortly after having brain surgery and then presented with a £5,000 bill for his care.
then even Amber Rudd would have cavilled. 

As Brexit has shown, the top ranks of the civil service are in desperate need of root and branch reform. Criteria for promotion and selection for mandarin rank are clearly disfunctional if such pointless, useless muppets continue to be appointed to PUS and second and third tier posts. Ministers deserve more; Amber Rudd deserved more. For Gods sake, let's use Common Sense as a prime candidate criterion, not Common Purpose.