Thursday, 23 March 2017

Westminster terrorist named as Khalid Masood

The terrorist who killed four people and injured 40 in Westminster yesterday has been named as Khalid Masood.

Masood was known to the police for violent conduct but not terrorism and ... wait for it ... the BBC are reporting that he was mentally ill.

What an insult to the memory of those who were killed.

French Muslim detained in Belgium for attempting to drive car into shoppers

A man has attempted to drive a car into shoppers in Antwerp, Belgium.

The car was driven at speed toward a shopping street but appears to have been stopped by security forces. The boot of the car was found to contain blades, a rifle and an unidentified bottle of liquid.

The driver has been named as Mohamed R and is a French national.

Police officers next to the car used in the incident

Address in Birmingham raided by anti-terrorist police

Anti-terrorism police have raided an address in Birmingham in connection with yesterday's terrorist attack in Westminster.

Three men were arrested at a house in Hagley Road that the hire car that was driven through pedestrians on Westminster Bridge was registered to.

Birmingham's Labour administration was criticised just days ago for allowing the Sparkbook area of the city to become "a Jihadi training ground", responsible for 1 in 10 homegrown terrorists. The address raided is less than 2 miles away from Sparkbrook.

Birmingham road

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Westminster terrorist attack death toll now at 5, Met says it will be tackling "right wing extremism"

The Metropolitan Police have confirmed that the death toll in today's terrorist attack in Westminster is now five people with around 40 others injured.

In a statement not long ago, Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley said that the police are working on the assumption that the attack was Islamic related terrorism but then bizarrely went on to say that the police would be concentrating on tackling "right wing extremism" that the terrorist attack might foster.

Talk about skewed priorities - putting resources into something that isn't an immediate problem instead of something that is!

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[UPDATED] Westminster terrorist unofficially named as convicted hate preacher Abu Izzadeen

Channel 4 News have backtracked on this story after it emerged that Izzadeen is, in fact, still in prison!

The terrorist behind today's attacks in London has been unofficially named as Abu Izzadeen, a convicted hate preacher from Hackney.

Izzadeen was jailed for 4 and a half years in 2008 for raising funds for a banned terrorist organisation. He was given a 2 year prison sentence last year (which would have been reduced to 12 months for "good behaviour") for breaching travel restrictions after being arrested on a train heading from Turkey to Romania. If the terrorist was Izzadeen it is likely that the attack was planned during his time in prison.

Westminster terrorist attack: police confirm 4 killed, including suspect

Met Police Assistant Commissioner, Mark Rowley, has made a statement on today's terrorist attack in Westminster.

Four people are now believed to have died, including a policeman and the terrorist, and at least 20 more injured.

Two die in Westminster terrorist attack

A terrorist attack has taken place outside the Houses of Parliament this afternoon with at least two person killed and an unknown number injured.

A car drove through pedestrians - including a group of French school children - on Westminster Bridge before crashing into railings outside Westminster Palace. The driver then entered Westminster Palace on foot and stabbed a police officer who has subsequently died before being shot several times.

The police are treating it as a terrorist attack but have refused to be drawn on who they believe is to blame. However, a picture of the suspected attacker is being shared on social media and the method of the attack is a common theme across Europe.

Neil McEvoy AM readmitted to Plaid group despite ruling that he bullied council officer

A Plaid Cymru AM suspended over allegations of bullying a council employee has been allowed back into the Plaid group after an adjudication panel ruled that he had bullied a Cardiff council officer.

Neil McEvoy AM bullied a council employee over an eviction in his role as a councillor in Cardiff. He has issued a statement showing that he is unrepentant and wants to appeal the adjudication panel's ruling in the High Court. Despite the ruling, Plaid Cymru have allowed this bully to take the whip again showing that bad behaviour is rewarded in the establishment parties.

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Monday, 20 March 2017

Article 50 process will start on 29th March

Kinder, Gentler Politics?

Shortly after the Stoke byelection I received the following email from Momentum, Labour’s left wing grassroots movementA year and a half ago I was a teacher. My life was rowdy kids and bundles of paperwork. I got involved in Jeremy’s campaign because I believe in a creating a fairer society. 
Since then I’ve come to realise that if we’re going to win, we all have a part to play. We need to build a grassroots movement of millions that are willing to fight for the world we all believe in.
Winning won’t be easy. We saw that in Copeland last week.
But during these last few weeks in Stoke, I have seen everything we need to win across the country.
If we’re going to win the country back, we’ll need to repeat the energy, passion and tactics that worked in Stoke, hundreds of times across the country. 

Energy, passion and tactics that worked?

Let’s look at some of them –

Bullying and intimidation – where UKIP have a chance of upsetting the Labour applecart, you will find their cohorts from the ironically named ‘Hope Not Hate’. Mobilised en masse, they attacked a number of female members of Young Independence, tearing their rosettes off and screaming abuse.

They also distributed many thousands of leaflets such as the one on the left – full of untruths and smears, such leaflets enable Labour to get around election spending limits by pushing their message whilst not having to be registered as an election expense due to their ‘third party’ origin.
Photographs taken during the campaign showed Labour activists putting these out with their own literature, conclusive proof that they were working hand in glove in a desperate attempt to retain their Parliamentary seat.
Paul Nuttall had also moved in to the area just prior to submitting his election papers – once the address was out in the open, he had to move after people tried to break in to the house and he was subjected to a campaign of hate mail and intimidation.

Negative campaigning – Why put across your positive vision for a community when you can merely attack your opposition with half truths and downright lies?
A feature of the campaign was the constant pushing of the message that ‘UKIP will privatise the NHS’ – something that has never appeared in any UKIP manifesto. (Ironically, it was Labour in government that privatised 5% of the NHS, mired the service in PFI debt, introduced the disastrous GP surgery contracts and opened up the disabled to persecution via the Work Capability Assessment and the atrocious private company, ATOS.)

The ‘Local’ candidate – Gareth Snell made a big pitch about him being the local man and Paul Nuttall being ‘parachuted’ in. Yet Snell actually hails from Suffolk, much further away from Stoke than his opponent, and now lives not in the constituency but in neighbouring Newcastle-Under-Lyme. Indeed, when asked on Twitter about how the campaign was going in Stoke, he replied “I have no idea how it goes in Stoke. I don’t live there”

Religious intimidation – When it became apparent that UKIP were making inroads in to their traditional ethnic minority vote, a Labour activist emailed local Muslims telling them they would ‘go to hell’ if they didn’t vote for the Labour candidate. A clear breach of electoral law and downright nasty and sectarian from a party that claims that UKIP are divisive.

Fake ‘public meetings’ – Labour put out a leaflet claiming that UKIP and Tory councillors had failed to turn up for a public meeting on local children’s centres, supposedly proving that only they cared. Except it wasn’t a public meeting but one organised by Labour for their own people with no councillors from other parties invited.
Patriotism – Labour made sure that the Cross of St George was on top of their election literature, supposedly to try and convince people that they care about England. Yet their stated policy aim is to divide our country up in to regions whilst they frequently attack anybody (Myself included) who displays the flag as a small minded ‘Little Englander’. There is also evidence that they despise anybody with a patriotic viewpoint, most notably when Emily Thornberry MP mocked ‘white van man’ at a previous election on Twitter for having the flag up on his house.
So, there you have it. The new ‘Kinder, gentler politics’ that was trumpeted by Jeremy Corbyn not only failed to materialise but the exact opposite was in evidence.
The ‘energy, passion and tactics’ that Labour employed would not look out of place in a totalitarian dictatorship or a corrupt developing country, yet Momentum are asking for this to be replicated up and down the land.
But then, it is hardly a surprise when you see the type of people who are idolised and quoted by those at the top of their party. This kind of regressive intimidation must not be allowed to win in an open and free democracy.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Queen gives royal assent to Brexit Bill, it's time Theresa May stopped dithering

The Queen gave royal assent to the Brexit bill today, paving the way for Theresa May to invoke Article 50 and begin the process of taking the UK out of the EU.

The Prime Minister still hasn't given a date when she will send the letter informing the EU that we are leaving, leading to yet more speculation about her motives. Is she hoping that it will be delayed again by vexatious legal challenges from the likes of anti-democracy campaigner Gina Miller who has promised to try to block Brexit again?

There really is no excuse for dragging this process out any further. The Prime Minister needs to move quickly if we are to avoid the next EU referendum and paying unnecessary membership fees. For every week that Theresa May delays invoking Article 50 we make a net contribution to the EU of a quarter of a billion pounds. That's almost the entire budget for transport being spent on an organisation that we voted to leave 9 months ago.

Electoral Commission says Tories committed election expenses fraud

The Conservative Party have been fined £70k by the Electoral Commission for making false spending declarations in the general election in 2015.

Specifically referring to Thanet South where Craig Mackinley went considerably over his legal spending limit to secure a victory over Nigel Farage, the Electoral Commission have said that they "cannot determine precisely" whether Mackinlay committed the fraud because of the Conservative Party's record keeping or whether he did it deliberately. They do, however, unequivocally conclude that Mackinlay and others "gain[ed] a financial advantage over opponents".

Hopefully the various police forces who have been investigating Tory election fraud will have found the evidence necessary to bring criminal charges against whoever was responsible. Their Chief Financial Officer has already been accused by the Electoral Commission of committing a number of offences and other officials are alleged to have been in on the fraud.

There could be several by-elections coming up soon ...

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Geert Wilders' PVV expected to finish as second largest party in the Netherland in yesterday's elections

Geert Wilders' PVV has come second in the Dutch general election held yesterday, leaving the incumbent VVD the largest party albeit with a big slump in the number of seats.

It will take time to finish counts and calculate seats won under proportional representation but it would appear that the VVD will come out with 31-33 seats (down from 41) whilst PVV will increase their 8 seats to 20. The PvdA (Labour) are expected to drop from 38 seats to 9.

There was much speculation prior to the election that the PVV could win the election as resentment toward uncontrolled immigration and the cost of propping up the EU and €uro have increase. And Wilders was expected to benefit from Rutte's government ignored last year's referendum result on Turkish visa free travel a couple of weeks ago and the Turkish government denounced the Netherlands and Dutch people over the last week or so.

But the Dutch are a funny lot. They are fantastic people but they are liberal to the point of destruction. Another Rutte government is a disaster for the Netherlands but that's democracy for you.

Rutte described the PVV as "the wrong type of populism". In the EU, populism has become a dirty word but it would be interesting to know how you can have the wrong type of doing what ordinary voters want which is what populism means.

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Wednesday, 15 March 2017

BCC raise UK growth forecast to 1.4%

The British Chambers of Commerce have raised their growth forecast for the UK economy from 1.1% to 1.4%.

The BCC, along with other industry analysts who were part of Project Fear, were forced to upgrade forecasts several times following the EU referendum when the economy failed to fall off a cliff edge, when unemployment dropped and when the mass exodus of employers they promised instead turned into billions of pounds of inward investment.

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Craig Mackinley MP interviewed under caution for 6 hours over election fraud allegations

Conservative MP, Craig Mackinlay, has been interviewed by Kent Police under caution for 6 hours as part of their investigation into alleged overspending in the last election.

Mackinlay is believed to be one of six Conservative MPs who face possible criminal charges and having their election result declared void for alleged fraudulent expenditure after Channel 4 found what it believed to be significant amounts of missing expenditure and expenditure wrongly declared against national campaigns rather than local.

The upshot of this is that several MPs are believed to have overspent by a considerable amount, breaking electoral law and giving themselves an unfair advantage. The South Thanet seat won by Mackinley was contested by Nigel Farage and the Conservatives threw the kitchen sink at it to stop him winning but in doing so it is alleged they overspent by as much as double the legal limit and hid the illegal expenses by claiming that people bussed in to the constituency or sent to work there full time on the campaign were actually working on their national campaign.

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