Saturday, 28 November 2015

A letter to my MP, Simon Kirby, regarding David Cameron and Syria... Sexing up the case, or ill informed?

I've been writing to my MP again. To be honest, having been re-elected in 2015 he hasn't been as responsive as used to be. He has even closed his twitter account - where we used to occasionally have exchanges.

He is something in the Conservative whips office, and something in the 1922 committee I believe, so probably too busy with politics to keep up the fantastic record of communication he use to have.

Anyway I sent the letter based on an interview I heard and the subsquent BBC World Service 'More or Less' broadcast - that I included in the RadioFreeUK friday show

More than whether the figures were misleading (see the letter), is that the Prime Minister is currently trying to get authorisation to send UK RAF planes in to battle in Syria -- and it would seem the Prime Minister is either hopelessly ill informed about the state of ISIS, or is deliberately sexing up his claims...

Here is the letter:

Dear Simon Kirby,

I recently heard the Prime Minister in an interview say that air strikes had led to ISIS losing 25-30% of the territory it had gained.

However, BBC Security Correspondent 'Frank Gardner' was surprised by this claim and subsequently the the BBC World Service program 'More or Less' looked into this claim.

The conclusion was that it is not a meaningful figure - if there was such an figure (20-30%) it would only be of unoccupied, unpopulated land, and not at all reflective of a loss of power by ISIS.

If the Prime Minister is basing his strategy for air-strikes on this information he is either misguided himself, or he is deliberately trying to mislead the public.

Can you tell me which it is? and based on that (either way) how David Cameron can be trusted to deploy UK troops while he is either ill informed, or deceitful? Also can you tell me how you plan to vote on authorising Mr Cameron to deploy UK RAF aircraft to attack Syria?

Yours sincerely,
First published at

Friday, 27 November 2015

Bookies for Bickley

With less than a week until voters go to the polls in Oldham West & Royton, the bookies are shortening odds for a UKIP win.

All but two of the online bookies tracked by the Odds Checker website are shortening odds on a UKIP victory and lengthening odds on a Labour win. Most bookies have UKIP around the 2/1 mark whilst Labour are still odds on at around 1/3.

There is no question that John Bickley can win Oldham West & Royton for UKIP. This once safe Labour seat is rapidly turning purple and while the bookies are pretty sure Labour will keep the seat, they're uncertain enough to keep UKIP's odds short in case they find themselves having to pay out.

Kingston Lib Dem paedophile arrested for breaching Sexual Offences Order

The former Lib Dem leader of Kingston Council and convicted paedophile, Derek Osbourne, has been arrested for breaching the terms of his Sexual Offences Order.

Osbourne spent just a year in prison for possession and distribution of over 5,000 images of child porn, beastiality and violent porn. He was released on licence in October last year.

Convicted Paedophile Derek Osbourne (Left) with Lib Dem colleagues

Thursday, 26 November 2015

ONS announces huge rise in immigration but the numbers don't add up

Immigration has skyrocketed and David Cameron's promise to limit net immigration to 10s of thousands is being openly mocked, even within his own ranks.

A combination of falling emigration and increasing immigration has resulted in an 82,000 increase in net immigration to 336,000 people. That's increasing the population of the UK by the population of Wigan and Peterborough combined whilst the total number of immigrants who moved to the UK in the last year is larger than the population of Glasgow.

As predicted by UKIP, most newly arrived immigrants were from Romania and Bulgaria. They accounted for 50,000 new arrivals between them. The total number of EU immigrants working in the UK increased by 324,000 to 2,000,000 (two million) and 1 in 6 workers in the UK are foreign born.

The pro-immigration lobby are pointing to the 746,000 job vacancies as "evidence" that we need more immigration, conveniently ignoring the fact that unemployment is currently running at 1,700,000 (1.7 million) or almost 2.3 unemployed people for every job vacancy.

But the figures announced by the Office of National Statistics are interesting because despite emigration reducing by 20,000 and net immigration increasing by 82,000 the gross immigration figure is supposedly still 636,000 which is the figure quoted in August for the year to March. The numbers don't add up. Gross immigration has to be more like 718,000 with illegal immigration and overstayed visas pushing the number well over three quarters of a million. We said that the end of year figures would be interesting but didn't think that it would be because they appear to have been fiddled!

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Labour activist abused online for reporting the demise of the Labour Party in Oldham

A Labour activist in Oldham has received abuse from Labour supporters after posting his findings from canvassing in Oldham on Reddit.

Here's what they had to say, it makes interesting reading:
Hi, I have been campaigning in Oldham for the last 2 weeks and thought I'd give you an update on how things are going. I'd just like to say that all my observations are one the basis of putting aside assumptions and are fair ones. They are based solely on things I have myself heard on the doorstep.

First off. There are 11 wards and 2 of them (coldhurst and medlock) are demographically heavily populated by south east Asians. This demographic went 65% labour at the election and so whilst Ukip have engaged there, it is not where their emphasis will be.
I have been knocking on the doorsteps around Chaddeston South, the heavily leaning white working class Royton North, and the 3 way battle of the Crompton Ward.
  • all 3 are labour areas in the past but there was only a near parity of labour support for this by election. worryingly, a significant minority were very unsure as to whether they could be bothered coming out next Thursday.
  • The reaction Ukip have had is generally a good one. Ukip is not 'detested' within these wards even by those who say they'd never vote for them.
  • Jeremy Corbyn is not popular in these wards even amongst those saying they'll vote Labour. What should concern Labour is that in Royton South (heavy labour), I have heard nothing positive over the last two weeks. The difference being that last week, there was a lot of neutrality whereas this week it was wholly negative.
  • one of the striking things I regularly heard was the number of these people who have always voted labour deciding to not vote. Many of these people were not prepared to lend Ukip their vote but were certain of their abstention.
  • I spoke to nobody over the last.2 weeks who voted Ukip at the GE who had since decided to change their mind or were less likely to vote at all. They were all certain to vote and stick with Ukip.
  • Around half of those certain to vote Ukip in Chaddeston and Crompton were not overly positive about Farage. They thought he was posh and didn't understand their lives but was at least prepared to 'say what needed saying' and this garnered at least a modicum of respect.
  • in Royton South, he was unpopular and seen as 'all the same' but the party was more popular and 'in touch with their lives. There's life after Farage, in my opinion.

RESULTS: (I do not claim that it is a representative sample).
Doors knocked: 120
Labour vote: 55
Certainty (marks out of 10) 60%
Weighted: 33
UKIP: 65
Certainty: 90%
Weighted: 59

conclusion labour have huge problems with their working class vote from what I have seen. These results were essentially reflected across the board by the 100 other campaigners over the last 2 weeks. Ukip is more popular than Farage though very few actively dislike him. But Corbyn has completely turned off his vote.

Ukip are still going to struggle because near 30% (south east Asian electorate) actively dislike Ukip And are certain to vote Labour if they come out to vote. UKIP will win comfortably in Royston South, chatteston and Crompton. The question really is, whether the south east Asian vote turns out. If they do and Ukip fail to turn 30-40% of the Tories, Ukip won't gain more than 35% and will lose. It all depends on the turnout, but in my honest opinion, at 3/1 it represents a ridiculous value for money as I'd put them both at evens. UKIP can win here, they are getting a very warm welcome and Corbyn is destroying his core vote.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Hypocritical Labour complain about UKIP's mock leaflet in Oldham

Labour have launched a hypocritical attack on UKIP for distributing a mock Labour leaflet pointing out Jeremy Corbyn's policies.

In this year's general election Labour distributed leaflets all over the country claiming UKIP wants to privatise the NHS, even distributing them to students at a Keele University election event and in Northumberland they distributed a letter claiming that UKIP was calling for mothers to lose state benefits. In the 2013 local elections the Conservatives distributed a fake UKIP leaflet in Lancashire and Labour were doing it in the South Shields by-election.

Trade union sockpuppets, Hope not Hate, have put a considerable amount of effort into publishing fake social media content and defamatory and inflammatory material about UKIP candidates to try and prop up the Labour Party.

The Labour MP for Denton & Reddish, Andrew Gwynne, has accused UKIP of "trying to take Oldham backwards to the days of division" and says that the leaflet would only heighten fears of racial tension. Oldham saw a series of race riots in 2001 after white communities retaliated to a growing number of racist attacks from asian gangs and the violence escalated. Gwynne is claiming that highlighting Jeremy Corbyn's policies of uncontrolled immigration, abolishing the armed forces, abolishing the monarchy and ceding the Falklands to Argentina - all of which are his policies - will result in a return of race riots and suggests the timing is inappropriate because of the terrorist attacks in Paris last week.

Its hard to decide what's most pathetic - the breathtaking hypocrisy, the suggestion that exposing the Labour leader's policies will lead to race riots or using the Paris terrorist attacks for political point scoring.

With three weeks until voters in Oldham West & Royton go to the polls, Labour are 1/6 favourites to win with UKIP a fairly close second with odds of 7/2 and the vote splitting Conservatives a distant third place with odds of 100/1. Opinion polls in the run-up to the by-election in the neighbouring Heywood & Middleton constituency last October predicted an almost 6,000 vote majority for Labour when in reality UKIP's John Bickley fell just 617 votes short of taking what was once a Labour safe seat.

The polling companies will have revisited their weighting after that result and the party's massive 3.9m votes in the general election this year but they're not going to lose their bias toward the status quo. The result is going to be a lot closer than any of the polling companies predict and John Bickley stands a very good chance of winning Oldham West & Royton for UKIP.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Cameron warns that terrorist attack on the UK is "highly likely"

David Cameron has warned that an attack on the UK is "highly likely" after the terrorist attacks on Paris.

French officials have so far confirmed that two of the terrorists entered Europe through Greece, posing as refugees. One of the terrorists - a Belgian resident who was able to take advantage of the non-existent border - is still on the run. At home, Theresa May and the Met Police Commissioner have casually announced that as many as 450 people who travelled to Syria to join ISIS have returned to the UK and that undercover armed police and soldiers will be patrolling public events and train and tube stations.

David Cameron's warning is nothing new - MI5 still have the UK national threat level set to "severe" which is what it's been since 2009. If an attack was imminent the threat level would be "critical". Cameron is unwilling to deal with mass immigration or abandon policies of appeasement but he is willing to protect our rights and freedoms by taking them off us. In the next few days we can expect new "anti-terror" laws to be announced which will do nothing to stop terrorists but will take rights and freedoms away from the 64m people living here who aren't terrorists. Such legislation does nothing to make us safe but it's an established pattern.

Nobody apart from terrorists and fundamentalists want terrorist attacks in the UK but turning the country into a police state in the name of protecting us from people who want to turn the country into a medieval religious state sort of defeats the object.

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again - #StandWithParis

Last night, ISIS terrorists launched coordinated attacks on Paris resulting in the deaths of at least 127 people.

Terrorists set off bombs and gunned down people in at least six locations, including the Stade de France where France and Germany were playing a friendly. The worst attack was at the Bataclan concert hall 200 yards away from the Charlie Hebdo offices where gunmen held concert-goers hostage before throwing explosives into the crowd and detonating them, killing over 80 people.

The terrorists were French, Egyptian and Syrian passport holders and reportedly shouted "This is for Syria" and "Allahu Akhbar".

French soldiers are patrolling the streets of Paris and border controls have been reinstated. ISIS bragged that they had been smuggling terrorists into Europe posing as refugees earlier in the year and one of last night's terrorists was a Syrian who had travelled to France through Greece with refugees.

This morning armed police arrested "a Frenchman" at Gatwick with two guns. He ran off, throwing one of the guns in a dustbin before police detained him. He had a second gun strapped to his body.

Meanwhile, the bodies were still warm in Paris when the British government announced that the first 100 Syrians to be resettled in the UK will be flown direct from Syria to Glasgow next week.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
- Albert Einstein

Friday, 13 November 2015

Analysis of David Cameron's EU reform letter

David Cameron's long awaited letter to Donald Tusk setting out his "demands" for his renegotiation of the UK's relationship with the EU has been published and it's decidedly underwhelming.

Here's what he's asked for:

Economic Governance

  • The EU has more than one currency
    The EU already has more than one currency and with the UK and Denmark having permanent opt-outs from the €uro it is always likely to have more than one currency.
  • There should be no discrimination and no disadvantage for any business on the basis of the currency of their country
    Any such discrimination would be illegal under existing treaties. Furthermore, the EU Court of Justice has already ruled this year that the EU Central Bank can't require banks to move to a €urozone country to clear €uro.
  • The integrity of the Single Market must be protected
    The single market was established by treaty, it's what the EU is supposed to be about. What challenges to the integrity of the single market have there been that means something has to be done to protect it? This is asking for a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.
  • Any changes the Eurozone decides to make, such as the creation of a banking union, must be voluntary for non-Euro countries, never compulsory
    The creation of a banking union would require treaty change and treaty changes require a unanimous vote by member states. If a treaty was presented that included non-€uro countries in a banking union then don't sign it. It's as simple as that. The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties says it's illegal to coerce a state into signing a treaty so any attempts to punish or disadvantage non-€uro countries for not signing up to such a treaty would be illegal under international law.
  • Taxpayers in non-Euro countries should never be financially liable for operations to support the Eurozone as a country
    The only money from non-€uro countries that's been used to bail out the €uro is money that was put into funds for that purpose. David Cameron got an unenforceable political agreement that the money wouldn't be used to bail out the €uro but they changed their mind and did it anyway. The simple answer is, don't put money into a bailout fund if you don't want it spent on bailouts.
  • Just as financial stability and supervision has become a key area of competence for Eurozone institutions like the ECB, so financial stability and supervision is a key area of competence for national institutions like the Bank of England for non-Euro members
    Again, this is something that can't be imposed on the UK as a non-€uro country. The British government have voluntarily given the EU competences in the financial sector that it shouldn't have had but the solution to that is not to give power away to the EU just because they want it.
  • Any issues that affect all Member States must be discussed with all Member States
    Really? So no bilateral talks between member states any more? Everything that affects all EU members has to be talked about in EU meetings in Brussels or Strasbourg with everyone present? That's a step backwards, it means we can no longer conduct our own diplomatic relations with EU members. It also means no more David Cameron jetting off to EU members one by one for private talks on "reform" of the EU that will affect all members.


  • Set a target for the reduction of the burden of regulation
    Not a cut in regulations. Not even a reduction in the burden of regulation. Just a target for the reduction in the burden of regulation.


  • An end to Britain's obligation to work to ever closer union
    This is completely meaningless. The principal of ever closer union is just words, it has no legal standing. Equally meaningless would be any pledge by politicians that we were exempt from ever closer union because the EU, its bureaucrats and bodies would all still be working towards ever closer union.
  • Enhance the role of national parliaments, by proposing a new arrangement where groups of national parliaments, acting together, can stop unwanted legislative proposals
    This procedure already exists. The EU Parliament can't pass legislation without the agreement of the EU Council of Ministers. Even where the EU Council uses Qualified Majority Voting - the lowest bar to pass EU legislation - they need 73.9% of votes and a majority of member states to pass it. It's not that hard to stop EU legislation in the EU Council, they just don't want to.
  • The EU's commitments to subsidiarity fully implemented, with clear proposals to achieve that
    Parliament is sovereign. The EU is already subservient to national parliaments in law, it is just in practice that they allow the EU to have primacy. The solution to this is to just say no.


  • Ensure that when new countries are admitted to the EU in the future, free movement will not apply to those new members until their economies have converged much more closely with existing member states
    This is nothing new. It has been applied to every new member since 2004 when half of eastern Europe joined the EU. And since every new country that joins the EU is going to be progressively poorer than the current members, it will quickly reach the point where their economies will be so weak that they won't approach EU standards for decades.
  • Tougher and longer re-entry bans for fraudsters and people who collude in sham marriages
    Temporary bans for some criminals that have committed fraud? Why not a permanent ban and why isn't this being targeted at child abusers, murderers and violent criminals?
  • Address the fact that it is easier for an EU citizen to bring a non-EU spouse to Britain than it is for a British citizen to do the same
    Everyone should have to obtain a residency permit to live here but if we were to stay in the EU then an EU citizen's non-EU spouse should have to obtain a residency permit as well. We have discriminated against most of the world - including our friends in the Commonwealth - to compensate for the fact that we can't control the number of immigrants coming into the country from the EU.
  • Strong powers to deport criminals and stop them coming back, as well as preventing them coming here in the first place
    EU citizens aren't checked when they come here, they go through fast track lanes. They aren't required to notify the authorities that they intend to move here and don't have to go through any of the checks that people from the rest of the world do to make sure they're not personae non gratis.
  • People coming to Britain from the EU must live here and contribute for four years before they qualify for in-work benefits or social housing
    Clever wording here. They must "contribute" for four years. The letter doesn't say they must contribute to the social security system, just that they "contribute". That's very vague and no doubt intended to encompass the vague notion of contributing to society, not actually paying into the system. And note the very specific wording of "in-work benefits or social housing". No mention of unemployment benefits, incapacity or disability benefits, maternity and paternity benefits, free school meals, council tax benefit, housing benefit or child benefit for instance.
  • End the practice of sending child benefit overseas
    How would this be enforced? How will someone be able to tell whether money sent abroad was child benefit or from some other source?
Cameron's letter is weaker even than many had expected with no attempt to deal with any of the major issues that underline our membership of the EU. Yet even with these limp, largely meaningless superficial requests EU leaders are already starting to rule them out. There will be no meaningful reform of the EU or the terms of our membership. The EU is fundamentally wrong for us and the federalist project has gone on for too long to change its direction.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

We will remember them

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Catalonia begins independence process from Spain

The Catalan government yesterday voted to declare independence from Spain by 2017.

A referendum was held last year on Catalonian independence which only managed to muster a 37% turnout but saw more than 80% vote in favour of independence. The Spanish government tried to block the referendum with the constitutional court in Madrid ruling that all Spaniards had a right to vote on matters of sovereignty.

The Spanish government will lodge an appeal against the Catalan parliament's decision to establish a treasury and social security system in preparation for independence to have it declared unconstitutional.

The constitutional court will of course declare the Catalan parliament's motion unconstitutional but the ruling of a court in what would be a foreign country after Catalonia becomes independent is unlikely to concern the Catalan nationalists.

The Spanish government intervened in the Scottish independence referendum campaign to tell the Scots that Spain would veto their EU membership application because Rajoy was concerned that it would embolden the Basques and Catalans. It doesn't look like they need much emboldening.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Lest we forget

Tax dodging Guardian falsely implying Aaron Banks and Leave.EU are dodging tax

The Guardian has tried to smear Aaron Banks and the Leave.EU campaign by implying that they're involved in tax avoidance schemes.

Banks asked Gibraltar-based STM Fidecs - a company that he used to own share in - to set up the limited company behind the Leave.EU campaign. They set up the company in July and transferred it to Banks in August. Using an agent to set up a company for you is standard practice and using one that you are familiar with and trust is common sense.

Leave.EU is registered in the UK and registered to pay tax in the UK. Banks clearly chose STM Fidecs as an agent to set up the company for him because he knows and trusts them, not because of their speciality in "maximising tax efficiency for high wealth individuals"  and "structuring international groups". Leave.EU is neither a high wealth individual nor an international group and is registered in the UK so it's hard to see how the Guardian could infer any benefit for Leave.EU or Banks from having STM Fidecs set up the company.

The Guardian tried to paint Banks as a shady tax dodger last year, prompting him to publish a copy of the cheque he sent to HMRC for his £1,865,100 personal tax bill and threaten legal action.
Of course, the Guardian aren't stupid enough to actually come out with an accusation of Banks or Leave.EU being involve in tax avoidance. They've just taken the facts, embellished them with unrelated and irrelevant information and left it to the read to put 2 and 2 together and come up with 5. This is something of a speciality for the Guardian whose readership is mostly too lazy or too stupid to separate facts from propaganda.

Something else that's a speciality for the Guardian is tax avoidance. Their in-depth knowledge of how companies like Starbucks or Amazon legally avoid paying tax doesn't come from research, they have first hand experience of tax dodging themselves.

The Guardian's offices are owned by an offshore subsidiary based in the Cayman Islands, the world's most notorious tax haven. This tax dodging company owns many of Guardian Media Group's investments and is shrouded in secrecy thanks to Cayman privacy laws. Last year the Guardian sold its controlling share of Autotrader to Apax Partners for £600m. How much tax did the Guardian pay on this £600m cash windfall? Nothing. They used the Substantial Shareholding Exemption scheme to avoid paying the £126m corporation tax bill on the profits.

In 2007, the Guardian purchased Emap for £1bn but managed to find a way of avoiding paying about £120m in stamp duty on the purchase. Meanwhile, in 2009 the Guardian made a pre-tax profit of £306.4m and ended up getting a tax rebate of £800k, leaving them with a corporation tax bill of just £800k or a measly 0.26% of their profits.

The Guardian are the ultimate hypocrites on taxation, bleating about tax dodgers and calling for boycotts of companies that don't pay their "fair share" of tax whilst funnelling their profits through companies in tax havens and dodging hundreds of millions of pounds of tax. One of the tax dodges the Guardian uses is moving money to Luxembourg where it pays 0.125% corporation tax through a registered tax avoidance scheme run by PriceWaterhouseCooper instead of the 20% rate it would pay if it wasn't part of a tax avoidance scheme or paid the corporation tax in the UK. This tax dodge is only possible because of EU double taxation regulations. No wonder the tax dodging Guardian is so keen to keep us in the EU.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Remember, remember ...

410 years and Westminster is still packed to the rafters with traitors. Come back Guy Fawkes, all is forgiven.

Germany has only taken 10 immigrants under the mandatory relocation system it instigated

Angela Merkel's mandatory redistribution of illegal immigrants and refugees around the EU has fallen on its face just weeks after the EU Council of Ministers pushed it through under Qualified Majority Voting.

In six weeks, just 116 illegal immigrants and refugees have been relocated from Greece and Italy to elsewhere in the EU with Germany taking ten of them and France taking none.

So far, not even a quarter of the required places to meet targets have been made available across the 25 EU member states that signed up to give the EU the right to flood their country with illegal immigrants in the Treaty of Rome. The UK, Ireland and Denmark have opt-outs from this clause although the EU is trying to circumvent it with proposals to give illegal immigrants and refugees the same freedom of movement rights as citizens of EU countries, meaning they would be allowed to travel to the UK as soon as they've lodged their asylum claim.

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