View Full Version : Labour Party Conference (merged several times)

28th Sep 2005, 17:44
So it would seem that Tony Bliars lot will let you say whatever you want, as long as you 'Don't mention the war'
See here

28th Sep 2005, 19:14
Pensioners in jail, now they're beating up an 82-year old guy ?

This from the party that keeps telling us that "if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" :yuk:

28th Sep 2005, 20:16
Yet another example of 'Don't do as we do, do as we say'.

I've never met anyone who will admit to voting for this lot!

28th Sep 2005, 20:50
Taking a realistic view of some of Bliar's Labour Party conference speech yesterday, we find the following disingenuous rhetoric based upon smoke and mirrors, and a touching belief that Labour supporters will believe anything. Maybe they do ?.

Rhetoric: “Take Immigration. We know we need strict controls. They are being put in place, along with Identity Cards”
Reality : Labour consistently objected to Immigration controls when in Opposition, accusing the Conservatives of Racism. It is estimated that 300,000 asylum seekers who have been refused permission to stay and lost their appeals still remain here. It is estimated that there are 870,000 illegal Immigrants in the UK. We have no way of knowing as there is no system for checking whether people arriving here actually leave. Identity cards do not come into use until 2008, and will be voluntary.

Rhetoric : “We will get more people off benefit and into work”
Reality : The welfare bill under Labour has risen from £92 billion to £137 billion whilst the proportion of people on ‘means-tested’ benefit has soared from 26% to 40%

Rhetoric: “We reformed University funding so that they had the resources to keep up with the world’s best”
Reality : Tuition fees, which are considered by most educated people to be middle class tax, will cost students £3,000 a year. Universities are still chronically short of money. 33% of all students do not finish their courses and the proportion of state school students in higher education is falling.

Rhetoric : “Lets be frank about why there are so many people on Incapacity Benefit – under the Tories, it was used to conceal unemployment. We will publish proposals to radically reform the benefit”
Reality : Certainly do not recall any objections from Labour previously when in Opposition. The number of under25's (!!!!) on Incapacity Benefit has rocketed by 60% under New Labour and now stands at160,000. There is no guarantee that the so called ‘proposals’ will resolve the 2.7 million currently drawing benefit and costing £7.7 billion a year, even though figures provided to the Labour Government suggest that two-thirds (1.8 million) are considered to be fit enough to work.

Rhetoric : “In transport, we will continue to develop proposals for a fundamental change in funding, including road pricing”
Reality : Motorists pay over £42 billion to the Labour Government in taxes, including some of the highest fuel duties in the world. Labour only spends around £6.7 billion a year on roads.

Rhetoric : “Over the Parliament our aim is to increase home ownership by one million”
Reality : This from a party which in Opposition was against any proposals to permit Council House tenants to buy their own homes. When in power Labour cut the discounts available to Council tenants wanting to purchase their own homes from £50,000 to £16,000. When Alan Millburn suggested extending the Right to Buy scheme to 700,000 Housing Association tenants during the last election, he was rapidly told off and the idea dropped.

Rhetoric : “City Academies are massively oversubscribed. Fact”
Reality : Really ? They cost the taxpayer twice as much as ordinary schools to set up, many are at the bottom (and continue to remain so) of the league tables. Their truancy rate is twice that of normal schools and many city academies are said to have been taken over by religious zealots.

Rhetoric : “The NHS Reforms must continue. Money alone won’t work”
Reality : That’s a surprise isn’t it ?? When in Opposition Labour consistently insisted that the only problem was a lack of sufficient money. Bureaucracy within the NHS has reached epidemic proportions and now costs the taxpayer £16 billion per year. Administrators and managers have grown at a rate three times greater than front-line staff, although productivity has been falling steadily since 1997. The UK has one of the worst survival rates for Cancer in Europe.

Rhetoric : “Crime overall is down”
Reality : For the first time in history, more than a million people a year are the victims of violent crime. This represents a four-fold increase since Labour came into power. Meanwhile home-owners defending their homes and families are increasingly targeted by Police for Prosecution, whilst those responsible are ignored or treated as the ‘victims’ ! Last year crime cost the UK £36 billion, which is more than we spend on defence.

Rhetoric : “For eight years I have battered the criminal justice system to get it to change”
Reality : Really ? Cannot say many have noticed. Bliar was personally responsible for introducing the Human Rights Act which has damaged the criminal justice system more than any other one single factor. It has enabled Left Wing lawyers to enrich themselves by fighting every case that further diminishes the rights of the law abiding citizens of the UK. Bliar’s wife and their cronies have of course benefited from this as well. As a result the Judicial system of the UK has been politicised, and Parliamentary involvement in the system emasculated.

Rhetoric : “(We must) give our young people places to go so that they’re off the street. (That means) more competitive sport in schools”
Reality : Labour has promised at least six times to put competitive sport at the heart of the curriculum. The Labour Government however has presided over the concreting over of school playing fields at the rate of over one a day, and half of six-year olds are not getting the recommended two hours PE each week.

Rhetoric : “The roots of this (loss of respect) are deep and partly formed by the break-up of traditional communities and family structure.”
Reality : The Labour Government since 1997 has been the most ‘anti-family’ Government the UK has known in its history. One of the first acts was the scrapping of the married couple’s tax allowance. The Civitas think-tank recently revealed that parents are £4,000 a year better off if they split up rather than if they stay married.

Rhetoric : “No government but a Labour one would have introduced the New Deal and given one million young people the chance of a decent job”.
Reality : The National Audit Office have already revealed that most of those who got jobs through the New Deal would have found employment anyway because of economic growth. Growth from foundations laid by previous Conservative Governments.

Rhetoric: “Only a Labour government would have made Sure Start (the government flagship plan to provide pre-school children with childcare, health and education) a vital part of some of the poorest communities in the country”
Reality : Sure Start has cost taxpayers £3 billion but produced no measurable improvement at all in children’s language or behaviour.

28th Sep 2005, 20:51
To be fair to the securit staff, the gentleman in question did appear to pose a threat.

At 82 he could produce a coherent and reasoned argument for being there (which is probably the one thing that confused the security staff and most of the party delegates), his receding hairline could be the disguise of a militant pensioners group, and without his teeth in, he could have given someone a very nasty suck.

Yes, he was definately up to no good.

28th Sep 2005, 21:52
To be fair to the securit staff
Obviously someone was - must have been feeding them free pies - Sky News reported them as large..... no, they weren't, they were really,really,really fat....

Ironically, the pensioner was born in Germany and had fled to Britain to escape the Nazis pre WW2.....

28th Sep 2005, 21:57
Walter Wolfgang, from London, was ejected from the hall after shouting "nonsense" as Foreign Secretary Jack Straw defended Iraq policy.

Police later used powers under the Terrorism Act to prevent Mr Wolfgang's re-entry, but he was not arrested.

Dunno about anyone else, but the bit I have highlighted in bold sends a chill up my spine.

28th Sep 2005, 22:09
Me too!

I spent nearly 20 years military service supposedly fighting this sort of stuff. Seems like they've invaded by the back door and are now in charge of the country!!


28th Sep 2005, 22:26
Welcome to Blair's Britain.

Some of us are beginning to wake up and smell the coffee......
well something is beginning to smell! :*

28th Sep 2005, 22:28
Thanks for that Astrodome. We now know who you don't support.

What I do not understand is why the many conservative Pruners who post similarly heartfelt and sometimes bitter and even intemperate rants do not save their energy for rebuilding a meaningful opposition party. Unless the Opposition gets serious very soon, there will be at least two, and possibly more, future Labour governments.

I don't think that is healthy for democracy, but what are you guys doing about it, apart from writing rude things about the Prime Minister from the comfort of your keyboard?

Although I am a Labour supporter, I take no pleasure from the present pathetic state of the Tories.

Well, apart from the fact that it annoys some people who need annoying, such as the staff of the Daily Mail and a dozen or so Pruners whom I do not need to name.

28th Sep 2005, 22:44
Unwell_Raptor;Although I am a Labour supporter, I take no pleasure from the present pathetic state of the Tories. What sort of supporter are you?

Just imagine an Arsenal supporter not getting pleasure from Chelsea being knocked out of the Cup by Bemerton Heath Harlequins.

Deep in your heart, are you happy with the state of Britain?


tony draper
28th Sep 2005, 22:55
Hmmm one doesn't like to worry you chaps further,but I just been offered a contract to instal 20 million cameras in peoples homes.
Looking inward not outward.

28th Sep 2005, 23:00
Unless the Opposition gets serious very soon, there will be at least two, and possibly more, future Labour governments Your post carries the weary air of one who is coming to realise the enormity of destruction one's political beliefs have brought upon the country ?

I don't think that is healthy for democracy, but what are you gys doing about it, apart from writing rude things about the Prime Minister from the comfort of your keyboard? Well some of us are working actively to remove the cancer that Labour has wrought upon our society, values, and family values.

Although I am a Labour supporter I have to admire your honesty and courage. Its getting harder and harder to find anyone who admits to either being a Labour party supporter, or who admits to having voted for them. So how on earth were they voted back in I ask the rhetorical question ?

I take no pleasure from the present pathetic state of the Tories Clearly you also are now concerned about the 'minor issues' of Bliar's legacy such as Parliamentary accountability, the reduction of democracy, the reduced independence of the judiciary, nepotism, and the increasing disregard for the truth.

For example, Clarke, a man already familiar to these threads in respect of his lies, told another one earlier today on the radio when he stated that opponents of extended pub hours could not be held for costs in the event of losing an objection against a pub chain or licensee. He knows full well that a magistrate can order costs against the loser as this is set out in the Legislation prepared by his office.

Send Clowns
28th Sep 2005, 23:10
Yes, Flypuppy, that really did shock me, more so than the original violence by Labour's goons. It kind of confirms what I thought, but earlier and more starkly than I, not known as an apologist for Blair, even considered; poorly-worded legislation could and therefore would be used other than as intended. This is really, really quite scarry. Who's up for taking to the streets of Brighton to protest? I can give people a lift from Bournemouth to Shoreham.

This is something we should literally fight; it is the most worrying thing for British people I have heard of happening in my life time. That the party in power can abuse its authority to that degree with no hint of an apology or even any aparent idea that it is wrong makes me see images of Tony as Ceaucescu; as a man of such vanity that he cannot imagine anyone else's contrary views should be considered, and cannot see why people would be so ungrateful as to question him. Anyone so foolish deserved to be silenced. It brings to mind Ceaucescu, and what they had to do to him.

28th Sep 2005, 23:17
The dishevelled, mountainous cake-stuffing security man (as seen on TV) was a spendid example of a Party law enforcer. In 1930s Germany they wore brown shirts and a red and white arm band.

28th Sep 2005, 23:22
Surely a contradiction in terms ?

Mr Chips
28th Sep 2005, 23:24
Unwell Raptor
What I do not understand is why the many conservative Pruners who post similarly heartfelt and sometimes bitter and even intemperate rants do not save their energy for rebuilding a meaningful opposition party.
What do you suggest we do? Rebuild a party which polled more votes in England than Labour ? The Labour Party are only in power because of Scottish MPs

I put it to you that Mr Bliar and his party have no mandate to govern England

What say you?

Send Clowns
28th Sep 2005, 23:36

U_R's a carping but uncritical Labour supporter. He complains about things and then can't justify his arguments. He completely fails to address any of Astro's points, but strikes off on a tangent of an issue that is irrelevant to the discussion.

Last time he did so it was his own thread, and he refused in the end to address the points that had destroyed the credibility of his argument, yet also refused to admit he was wrong. He posts bald statements without being willing to back them with reasoned arguments.


Do you think me fair in my assessment? Or are you actually going to post a reasoned argument for once, and actually address some of the points Astro has made? As it stands they seem perfectly reasonable, and with you refusing to address them your support fo Labour looks blind and unreasonable. It looks like you are trying to divert the discussion because you can't answer the points made.

Did you see today what Labour thinks of people? Did you see what I have been saying for years? That ill-considered legislation will be abused? That those precious people at the top of your party cannot be trusted, that they had a deep streak of arrogance? Not sure even I believed that they would abuse legislation they brought in to stifle dissent within their own party. I am truly, truly worried by this. Orwellian is a word too often used, and used often in the wrong context; I cannot, however, think of a better word today. Have you read 1984 recently? If you have not, I suggest you do so, and Animal Farm while you're at it. Then take to the streets and help to remove this foul infestation you have helped to bring to power in our country.

29th Sep 2005, 00:05
While the usual Daily Mail readers will crawl out of the woodwork and start the usual rants, ask yourself this; while Tony Blair was busy out-Torying the Tories and putting forward some of the most invasive, and civil rights damaging legislation since the Reichstad need the attentions of the Berlin Fire Brigade, where was the "opposition"? Oh yes, they were right here;
The law has been tightened significantly in recent years. The Terrorism Act 2000, passed with full Tory support, gave the Government wide-ranging powers. That is direct quote from the Conservative website. In the past few years the Tory party has rolled over and played dead on so many issues where public opinion has demanded other courses of action.The only party that has shown any balls and stood up against the true blue Labour party and ineffective "opposition" has been the LibDems. I never thought I would see the day when those awfully nice people from suburbia would be regarded as lefties.

I don't support a political party like a football team, as some do. Politics and politicians should represent the views and beliefs of the electorate, that at least is my understanding of "Representative Democracy". I have voted in the past for 4 major political parties, as I looked a little further than just the colour of the rosette the candidates were wearing. Each time the candidates who got my vote were the ones who were most likely to represent my views and concerns at that time.

Be honest clowns, if this had happened at the Tory party conference would you still be willing to organise a protest? I will reserve judgement on your answer, as I suspect I know what you will say.

This incident is not the thin end of the wedge, that happened a while ago, but so many people were banging on about the threat from asylum seekers and such like that noone really noticed how legislation was being drafted that could be easily misused. Anyone who did raise doubts was suddenly in league with Al Quaeda.

Anyone who embraced the Thatcherite ideals of the 1980's now has the government they deserve.

Send Clowns
29th Sep 2005, 00:19
Yes I would Puppy, to be honest. This was dreadful, absolutely apalling and you are making political point scoring out of it. Isn't that typical?

Difference is it wouldn't happen. They have never had that instinct to control people that this Labour government has; if they showed any such tendency I would not support them. I believed at the time they were naive to support the legislation, and said so.

The Labour government lied about its use, as I have pointed out here before, in that case concerning its constant use in London. The idea was that it would only be enacted when necessary on demand of the Chief Constable or Commissioner of police. Well Blair (the other one - the dreadful Met Commissioner) has demanded it every time it lapsed (is it 4 weeks?), which was exactly what Tony Blair said was not going to happen. He also said this was not going to happen. Some of us never believed him, some are continuously taken in by his next deceit.

P.S. Where are the Mail readers?

29th Sep 2005, 01:15
There is a long standing British tradition of heckling politicians with words rather than missiles. Scepticism and scant regard for authority is and always has been part of being British, and our best politicians dealt with heckling from the floor without assistance from 'heavies'. Although Home Secretaries were often heavy handed with mass demonstrations - Winston S Churchill turning the troops out against General Strikers with orders to shoot if necessary is one notorious example - politicians on the platform would think on their feet and respond with charm and wit. My personal favourite was Denis Healy, who responded to a shout of "stupid bastard!" with the reply "Now we have your name Sir, what is your question?"

As we decline to a state where aged gentlemen are manhandled off the premises and later detained however briefly, under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, perhaps we are no longer British?

29th Sep 2005, 01:18
I was in Islington earlier on - Blairville ! What an absolute crap hole it is - the streets are so worn, tired and dirty you can't believe we're in 2005. The street lamps are still those concrete posted yellow sodium lamps. You have got to be a complete and total w***** to give your hard earned council tax to Labour run Islington so you can surround yourself in a pit of urban squallor - ( need I say more ? )

Krystal n chips
29th Sep 2005, 06:44
Witnessed the event on the News last night and read the report--
hence a few more questions I propose.

Who, for example, authorised the various lumps of congealed bone and gristle to act as they did--or were they simply acting alone--and if the former applies, what was the criteria for doing so? "No heckling from the audience will be tolerated by order of the divine one himself" perhaps ? Please bear in mind we live in a "society" that does not accept responsibility per se so we will never get to learn the answer to the former question anyway.

The final paragraph re the comments from Sussex Police would suggest they wished to distance themselves from the incident---which rather contradicts the use of the Prevention of Terrorism Act in the first place does it not--and if the Act was used as reported---why?.

Neither do the comments from the Party chairman make pleasant reading---notably "not be tolerated". More of an insight than was intended I suggest ?.

Overall, very unpleasant and disturbing images and responses which raise more -- and deeply significant questions ---than answers concerning the present state of "democracy" within the UK today.

Curious Pax
29th Sep 2005, 07:29
Seems that they have realised that as PR goes it wasn't good, so apologies are now flying round left right and centre. Rightly in my opinion.

I might be a Labour voter, but it is increasingly on the least bad basis, rather than enthusiastic support.

To creep the thread slightly, and without wishing to churn through Astro's long list item by item, as he clearly has more time to do the research than I have, I note that a third of the points refer to Labour in opposition. It was this harking back to supposedly better times that kept Labour out of office in the 80s/90s, and only changed once they moved on and addressed the future rather than the past. Whether you agree with the changes is immaterial - it is what was needed to make them electable. If you are typical of Tory thinking then you will still have problems come the next or election, and even the one after that. Like U-R I believe, much as it pains me, a stronger opposition would not be a bad thing.

PS: I see the Conservative Party website has yet to cut and paste the post - I'm sure it will soon!

29th Sep 2005, 07:48
Looks a worrying trend and development from what I can see.

The Labour party conferences used to be fractious with everyone having their say and all hell breaking loose on the floor! Terrible for the leadership, but at least it was democratic!

29th Sep 2005, 08:21
Police stopped Mr Wolfgang under the Terrorism Act when he tried to re-enter on Wednesday, seizing his pass. Nice little preview of the future, isn't it ? Wait until we've all got ID cards. Step out of line and we take your card away - instant house arrest.

Very very nasty indeed.

29th Sep 2005, 08:50
You have it spot on there Flypuppy. Some of us do not support a political party like a football team, but on a rational basis. I first supported Labour at University, where that made me a right-winger as everyone else was a Trot. I was slung out of Labour in the early Seventies and I voted Liberal twice in 1974, because of Wilson's disgraceful weaselling over the miners. I voted Tory with a peg on my nose in 1979 because Labour was beginning its long slide into chaos. I happily joined the SDP in the early 80s and worked hard for them. Post Falklands the SDP's high hopes were not realised, and I did not rejoin Labour until Blair became leader, since that gave me 80% of the SDP's agenda. After all, as a supporter of a market economy and the NHS, where else could I go?

I am critical of aspects of Government policy, and I have expressed that criticism in a dozen letters published in The Times as well as on national TV and Radio programmes. My blog contains many criticisms of the Government's approach to the criminal justice system, and I am heavily involved in official committees and working groups that are trying to make some sense of recent changes.

So in a two horse race, I support Labour. My earlier post was a perfectly sincere expression of sadness at the state of the Tories, as a healthy democracy needs an opposition, and in the next decade the time will probably come to throw Labour out as they run out of ideas. Stupid yah-boo-sucks abuse of Tony Blair won't change things. True opponents of Labour need to get their hands dirty and start to work at the grass roots to rebuild the Conservatives. I have worked with Liberals, nice people, most of them with an honourable record in the big issues, but a government? Not really.

29th Sep 2005, 09:23
A shockingly excellent and insightful post U_R, far too good for Jet Blast!

Dave Martin
29th Sep 2005, 09:27
Walter Wolfgang, a veteran Labour activist from Richmond Park in south London, was dragged from the hall by stewards after shouting "nonsense" as Jack Straw spoke of Britain's success in bringing democracy Iraq.

Mr Wolfgang tried to re-enter the hall, but was refused permission under Section 44 of the Prevention of Terrorism Act. His conference pass was also confiscated.

Does this not concern anyone? Does "if you have done nothing wrong, there is nothing to fear" really hold true with regards to anti-terror legislation? If this is how a heckler gets treated, how about anti-war protesters?

"In Germany the Nazis came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up. I felt that since I wasn't a Communist it was no concern of mine. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up. I felt that since I wasn't a Jew, it was not my affair. Then they came for the labor leaders, and I didn't speak up. I felt that since I was not a labor leader or even a member of a union, it was none of my business. By the time they came for me because of my liberal views, it was too late. there was no one left to speak up."

An extreme example, but illustrates that allowing this kind of legislation is the thin end of the wedge, and while it doesn't affect each and every one of us right now, it ultiamtely could. Hardly surprising to see it "accidently" missused so soon after its creation.

EDIT: Oooops, didn't see this thread - I've been merged! Sorry for the repition, but the view still stands!

Send Clowns
29th Sep 2005, 09:59

You surely mean "shockingly uninsightful"? It has nothing of substance as to why he supports the party he does, relying on vague prejudices. He claims that reasoned arguments are "yah-boo-sucks abuse", while he habitually uses ya-boo-sucks abuse instead of reasoned argument (see the Daily Mail thread). In fact he refuses when asked to give a reasoned response, resorting to base insult.

He supports a party despite being completely unwilling to consider the arguments being put forward against support for Labour. The arguments here suggest that the party is illiberal and has been unable to do what it promised to do while consistently bringing about damage to the country it promised not to bring about. I would add that it has proved to be the most corrupt British government certainly this century, probably for much longer. Last time this was debated those contributors arguing against Labour being most corrupt were completely unable to bring up significant counter-examples. Since then I have seen further evidence that one of the few examples of minor corruption in the Tory party they quoted (against the many Labour examples of more serious corruption) was, as I always argued, completely untrue. In this thread U_R and you have been unwilling to counter Astro's arguments that Labour has not delivered on promise to act and has gone back on promises not to act in certain ways.

Dave Martin
29th Sep 2005, 10:17
Send Clowns,

Which party has actually opposed the terror legislation? I think you'll find with the possible exception (and only a slight one at that), the Lib.Dems are the only ones.

All political parties are currently quite happy to accomodate and potentially miss-use this legislation.

The general public is as muc hto blame for this; both permitting and demanding hasty legislation with no regard to its potential abuse.

29th Sep 2005, 10:20

Don't me having a go at me! I'm not a Labour voter or British!

His post was valid becaue it shows clearly he is not a blind follower of politcal parties and votes the parties which correlate with his beliefs and values.

I'll leave it to others to discuss Tory corruption wrt Archer, Aitken and co, it's well known surely.

What Astro doesn't comment of course is the performance of the Economy under Brown.

Lamont/Lawson to Brown one hell of a chasm there I would think....

Send Clowns
29th Sep 2005, 11:00

I did not "have a go at you"! I didn't mention your politics, I pointed out that the post you were praising was far from insightful, and why that was the case.

Astro did comment on the performance of the economy, and that it was strong because of the basic conditions put in by the Tories. By the time the effects of Labour changes became noticeable the private-sector economy slowed almost to a halt, with growth kept up by brute force and ignorance; any fool can get the economy to grow by spending sufficient money himself.

Lamont sorted the economy, as anyone who was economically literate would know. There is a certain time lag for the effects to come in, and that meant that the growth came in the mid to late 90s, when Labour came to power. Now we see the true effects of Brown - and it is looking dire. The only reasons it is not worse are that the fundamentals are good (both the former Tory policy and teh world economy), unsustainable public spending and the one good decision he made, to allow the Bank independence. Even that he is clawing back now, as his cronies on the committee start to influence the interest rate for political purposes.


Where did I say that any party opposed the anti-terrorism legislation? I said I opposed it, but I never claimed to be in parliament. I disagree that the general public is to blame. The politicians are for giving in to their demands, that is not what politicians are paid for, and especially Labour for (a) being so susceptible to public opinion and (b) writing such crap legislation and saying it would not be abused. They should have made sure it could not be abused. They should have stopped the Metroplitan Police Commissioner from abusing it - he is well and truly their man. They certainly should not have encouraged its abuse at their own conference!

No other party could decide on the legislation, and the others co-operated, I believe naively but I think in the belief that by doing so they would have most influence on a government that then had a 170-seat majority. I don't think even Lib Dems, with their illiberal instincts, would have really liked this side of the legislation.

Where has any party said they are happy to abuse this legislation?

29th Sep 2005, 11:41
Dont worry - the home secretary has stated that crime will be eliminated before the next election. Hope you all remember that pledge in four years time.

29th Sep 2005, 11:41

Difference is it wouldn't happen. They have never had that instinct to control people that this Labour government has; if they showed any such tendency I would not support them. I believed at the time they were naive to support the legislation, and said so.

If you really think legislation like this would not be introduced under a Tory government, I think you are being either naeive or blinded by party loyalty. The Tories wholeheartedly supported the 2000 Terrorism Bill and all the subsequent "anti-terror" legislation with barely a murmer of opposition.

The 1980's were not exactly halcyon years for democratic expansion in Britain either.
The Thatcher government’s abolition in 1984 and 1985 of all seven democratically electedMetropolitan County Councils. During the 1980's journalists and writers had their works threatened with censorship based on the 1911 Offical Secrets Act (itself a poorly worded piece of legislation which succesive governments have used and abused). The worrying sight of Special Branch raiding the Glasgow offices of the BBC to remove material relating to Duncan Campbell's program on the Zircon satellite system. Clive Ponting being dragged in front of the courts, the attempt to ban Peter Wright's book Spycatcher (which only led to the UK looking like a laughing stock). Banning union representation at GCHQ, introducing additional powers during the miner's strike that allowed (under law) for the first time ever, the police to decide in advance what the presumed purpose of a person’s journey was, and then preventing them from undertaking it. Seumas Milne, while not my favourite writer, has written an interesting account of the extraordinary lengths to which the Conservative government and the secret services were prepared to go to destroy the power of the NUM.

Britain assumes itself to be democratic because of a complacent reliance on its historical reputation as a ‘true’ parliamentary democracy in which freedom and fairness are integral to the State. Yet such complacency can easily obscure two essential facts. First, that the legal and political rights of less powerful people have had to be fought for, often bitterly. And second, that a right that has been won by challenging existing power structures may be lost again.

29th Sep 2005, 12:01
As ex pilot now security steward, the yobs who ejected the old boy appear to have done so without a request from the chairman of meetig. could be assault charges flying soon

29th Sep 2005, 12:08

You comments on the economy sound remarkably like those of the GOP in the US about their economy..

i.e. the robust and stellar economic growth during Clinton's tenure was down purely to the foundation Bush senior laid before him and the downturn when Dubbya took office was actually Clintons fault as the economy was heading south when he was still in office!

You can't have it both ways. Was the economic progress in the UK in the 80's down to the Labour govt before them?
Of course not, likewise blame for the downturn in the late 80's early 90's was the fault of the Tories looking at Lawson's giveaway budgets which ended up fuelling runaway inflation and then very high interest rates and so on....

Labour came in and gave the Bank of England the power to control Interest rates and gave some needed fiscal discipline.

29th Sep 2005, 12:22
Whatever happened to UKIP?

It seemed to promise so much, yet after the brief involvement of the orange-faced tart, it's sunk without trace.

Send Clowns
29th Sep 2005, 12:55
And the power, Puppy, of the NUM was based on what exactly? Their democratic mandate to try to bring the country to its knees? That authority used to break the undemocratic power of the unions was then abused in what circumstances? You are now providing proof for my case, that even when draconian powers are brought onto the statute books Conservatives don't abuse them. Once the ability of the unions to prevent other people going about their lawful business and going to work was removed the powers were not used again. In case you, like I, do not recall those times the unions had, in 1979, taken over the country, and had to be broken.

Satellite technology, sigint and counter-espionage are legitimate security concerns, to be tested in court if necessary as these cases were. Are you trying to suggest that an 82-year-old British man born in Germany is a legitimate terrorist threat, when you make those comparrisons? I really cannot understand how that could be - is there a known terrorist organisation of old refugees from Nazi Germany? Perhaps those that don't like the totalitarian instincts of Blair? Can you tell me the name of this organisation?

The Conservative party was not as enthusiastic as you make out about this legislation. They only acceded when assurances were made by Blair that it would not be used in exactly the way it is now being used. I have already said they were naive to accept this. There has, however, been far more than a "murmur" of opposition to anti-terrorism legislation, certainly since the election, and it seemed at times before that the only reason the Tories played along was that when that opposition came up certain papers started to say they were soft on terror. You should try reading broader media rather than trelying on the BBC as you seem to miss those things they miss. This was not a viable position just before an election, and sinc they could not change the legislation I can understand tehir actions, even if I disagree.

So which party brought about this legislation? To read your post it seems the Conservatives were to blame!


Ermmmm, you seem to be misunderstanding. Clearly the GOP had a point. If what you say is true (I trust you) and the economy was strong soon after Clinton took office that can only be down to the previous administration and world affairs (as any economist will tell you these things take time). Conversely if Bush Jnr had economic problems when he first took office that can only be down to Clinton and world affairs. So ... you provide further evidence to support my argument. Thanks.

The UK economy only grew strong in the 1980s after a few years of Conservative government. So no it was not down to the previous government, which almost destroyed the economy as you should know. They are responsible for the problems in the economy for the first 4 years or so (longer than usual as so much damage had been done over so much time, and the unions still had power initially to damage the economy).

Mistakes were then made, and combined with a slow world economy the country suffered recession. Eventually economic policy pulled us out of recession into the strongest economic shape we had been in for many years, a recovery funded not by profligate government spending or by consumer boom but by (mostly small and medium) business and external investment. Now Labour have stifled business, increased tax massively, kept some short-term growth in a good world climate only by discouraging saving and encouraging unsustainable borrowing and by massive but inefficient public-sector growth. They have set the economy up for a real fall.

The 4 members of the MPC of the Bank of England put in by Brown all voted in the most recent meeting against the course that the governor felt wisest, and won 7-5. Of the independent members the case would have gone 5-3 the other way, or even more without the arguments from Brown's stooges. Not so independent bank, and all for news management before the conferences.

But that is all Labour does, isn't it, manage the news? So say the insiders who dare to speak out, despite No 10 trying to silence them.

29th Sep 2005, 13:15
Blimey, have you lot just woken up or something? In another thread I posed a few questions:-How do most Brits (or others, come to think of it) feel about the proposed new anti-terror legislation Blair has in mind?

Is it "more power than a good man should need, and more than a bad man should be allowed", the need for which is far from proven, or is it necessary given the threat we apparently face?

If police cannot find enough evidence to charge someone in two weeks after arresting them, is three months likely to be enough?

What do people think "glorifying terrorism" means? Does this include having a poster of Che Guevara on the walls of one's student bedsit? Has anyone ever come up with a definition of "terrorism" that's worth a damn? If not, how can we ever define "glorifying" it?

How happy are people that rights that were fought for hundreds of years ago are simply taken from us by the government just when they feel like it? What about Magna Carta? Did she die in vain (to quote Tony Hancock)? Whither Habeas Corpus?

Is it time we had a written constitution to guarantee our rights, duties etc. and to curtail the power of governments? Or are people happy that any government that has been elected by a minority of the electorate can in the ensuing five years do anything the heck they like?There was not a single answer to any of this.

Tories and Labour have conspired to steal our basic freedom from us, with hardly a murmur. As Flypuppy points out, it is only the Lib Dems that have actually shown any balls at all and stood up for the people of this country and the freedoms that people fought and died for. The abuse of Prevention of Terrorism legislation to silence a heckler is disgusting, disgraceful and reminiscent of Hitler and Stalin. But I suspect that it will prove to be only the thin end of the wedge, unless people start to wake up and say "ENOUGH - NO FURTHER" and reclaim this country as their own.

29th Sep 2005, 13:24
unless people start to wake up and say "ENOUGH - NO FURTHER" and reclaim this country as their own.

Whatever happened to UKIP?

Whilst not quite ready for the last election a true alternative is being organised (http://www.newparty.co.uk) at the moment.
Whilst a lot of you cynics will laugh and decry them before their views are known.You might all consider that at the beginning of the last century there wasn't a Labour party.

tony draper
29th Sep 2005, 13:28
The thing I find doubtfull is todays statement that all the Stewards are voluteers?, those two blokes were pro bouncers if I ever saw one, they don't work for nowt.

29th Sep 2005, 13:32
Are you trying to suggest that an 82-year-old British man born in Germany is a legitimate terrorist threat, when you make those comparrisons? I really cannot understand how that could be - is there a known terrorist organisation of old refugees from Nazi Germany? Perhaps those that don't like the totalitarian instincts of Blair? Can you tell me the name of this organisation?

Where the fckuing hell did I even intimate this? It is taking quite some effort on my part not launch into another banning inducing reply to you clown. God alone only knows how you could possibly come to the conclusion you did.

Try reading what I wrote, you obviously have poor comprehension skills. Your inimitable interpretation on the role of the Tories in supporting the various terrorism bills that have been put through the House of late is not surprising either.

Once the ability of the unions to prevent other people going about their lawful business and going to work was removed the powers were not used again.
So these powers have been removed from the statute books then have they?

Satellite technology, sigint and counter-espionage are legitimate security concerns, to be tested in court if necessary as these cases were.
What Campbell was trying to show was nothing to do with the technology, or the use of it, but it was more to do with fact that the project violated a 1982 government agreement to inform the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee of any military project costing more than a certain amount. During the course of his filming for the Secret Society programme, Campbell questioned former Ministry of Defence officials and Robert Sheldon MP, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee. Inevitably, word of his inquiries reached government, and the Prime Minister decided to act. Nigel Lawson, then Chancellor of the Exchequer, recounts in his memoirs that 'the government managed to lean on the BBC to ban the programme'.

I certainly do remember having to eat dinner in candlelight due to the 3 day week, and the Winter of Discontent and am certainly aware of the need to curb the power of the unions, but using MI5 to infiltrate unions is going too far, and the sort of tactics expected of Pinochet's Chile, but you probably think he was a top bloke as well.

I can assure you that do indeed take my information from many sources, the Conservative party website included. Maybe you should try taking off the blinkers.

29th Sep 2005, 13:41
I'm, hardly proving your point SC! You're proving mine so cheers!

In the US...Economy bad - Clinton arrives and tackles huge deficits. Result - Economy grows on the basis of a solid financial footing

In the UK...Economy bad - Thatcher arrives and tackles major problems and fixes many things. Result - Economy grows but is set back due to careless budgets leading to high inflation/interest rates etc

and finally...

In the UK...Economy bad - Blair/Brown arrive and bring fiscal discipline while at the same time stimulate the economy. Result - Economy grows!

29th Sep 2005, 14:02
With regards to Unwell_Raptor: who's admitted to voting for basically every major UK party at some stage over the past 30 odd years...!

You can either deride U_R for being the fickle one...or else blame the politicians for their own haste in seeking election by promising, if not actually doing whatever is required...?! :rolleyes:

I know which version I'd have more confidence in...the whole of UK is becoming an Isle of Dogs...eat dogs. :(

29th Sep 2005, 14:51
In the UK...Economy bad - Blair/Brown arrive and bring fiscal discipline while at the same time stimulate the economy. Result - Economy grows!

Unfortunately for those Labour supporters out there the economy is at it's lowest growth figure since 1993.Seems the pigeons are coming home to roost.What's the answer...lets try the usual Labour cure.
'What's that ' I hear you all say.
Same party slightly different spots but your taxes WILL go up.

29th Sep 2005, 15:24
I agree Lasernigel, it's all swings and roundabouts. The Economist was reporting that the UK has reached it's ceiling of it's current growth phase and is due to retract whilst the German economy is all set for moderate growth again. It may then take the Tories to come in in a few years time and change some policies, maybe get rid of some red tape and re-look at the tax system to set the economy for growth again....

Around the magic roundabout we go......

Mr Chips
29th Sep 2005, 23:02
Unwell raptor, thank you as ever for totally ignoring the point which I put to you.

May i suggest to one and all, that the prevention of Terroirsm Act was only used to prevent him entering a normally public hall without a pass?

29th Sep 2005, 23:08
Mr. Chips asked:

Unwell raptor, thank you as ever for totally ignoring the point which I put to you.

What point was that?

Are you sure that it was me you meant to be rude to? Are you sure that you do not have any other Prune names?

What, in fact, is going on?

Mr Chips
29th Sep 2005, 23:16
Dear Mr Raptor, or may I call you JP Justice whcih is the name you used when we met in person many years ago. I have no other PPRuNe name, and I have not been rude to you.

On page 1 of this now m,erged thread, i challenged what you said, and asked you apoint about Blairs mandate to govern. You have so far failed to address that issue.

On the Daily Mail thread, you asked a question which I answered, and challenged you to disagree with. you have so far failed to respond.

It strikes me, reading through this thread and others, that you are often accused of failing to respond when challenged. Interesting that.

(I wonder who he thinks I am)

29th Sep 2005, 23:21
Even as I write, I can imagine a great uprising of (labour) OAPs. Possession of walking sticks, handbags and umbrellas will become a threat to National security and those people will become liable to arrest under the current legislation. And airship will be incarcerated with the authorities "throwing away the key" for such incitement.

29th Sep 2005, 23:25
Oh, That?

I am sorry. That looked so like a rhetorical question that I assumed it did not merit a reply. On reflection I think that I was right.

Yes, I do remember meeting you at a GatBash, when I appeared under an earlier sig. I can't remember anything that we said, but I do recall that it was your round when you vanished.

29th Sep 2005, 23:54
...but I do recall that it was your round when you vanished. That is precious...hehehehe :)

Mr Chips
30th Sep 2005, 00:26
I think my point (and that of many other people) has been proven.

30th Sep 2005, 06:55
Mr Chips,

If you believe that Blair has no mandate to govern in England what do you propose? Independance for Scotland?

Unfortunately the figues don't bear out your assertion, though:

Labour 353

Conservative 196

Liberal Democrat 62

Scottish National Party/Plaid Cymru 9 (SNP 6/PC 3)

Democratic Unionist 9

Sinn Fein 5 (Have not taken their seats)

Social Democratic & Labour Party 3

Independent 2

Ulster Unionist 1

Respect 1

Labour has a majority of 66 and 41 Scottish MP's, so by my reckoning, taking away all the Scottish Labour MPs, they still retain a majority of 25.

For better or worse, the democratic system the UK currently uses allows for the situation you describe. Proportional Representation might make a difference, but that is another argument for another time.

No government since 1931 has actually carried more than 50% of the vote.

Curious Pax
30th Sep 2005, 07:47
Results for seats in England:
Lab 286
Con 193
Lib 47
Respect 1

So under the current system a Labour majority of 44.

Popular vote:
Lab 8,043,461
Con 8,116,005
Lib 5,201,286

So under a basic PR system the Conservatives would have shaded it by a not exactly conclusive whisker (percentages Lab v Con were 35.4 v 35.7).

So if you believe in PR, than no one has a mandate, all of them having less than 50%; under our current system, like it or loath it, Labour does have a mandate.

However under the PJBALAS PR system (Pprune Jet Blast Anti Labour Approval System of Proportional Representation, the system whereby anyone on Jet Blast not supporting Labour carries a block vote worth 5 million 'ordinary' votes) you are indeed correct, Labour has no mandate!

30th Sep 2005, 11:00
With regards to Unwell_Raptor: who's admitted to voting for basically every major UK party at some stage over the past 30 odd years...!

I would see this as a major positive. Illustrative of someone who votes according to the issues and electioneering of the day; rather than blindly following a political party regardless.

It is the floating voter who normally decides the outcome of elections in marginal seats: long may it continue to be that way.

Send Clowns
30th Sep 2005, 13:07

You compared the use of anti-terrorist legislation against an 82-year-old man with the use of security legislation in areas that are of legitimate, if debatable, security concern. Therefore either (a) you don't believe they are comparable or (b) you think there is a legitimate terrorist threat from 82-year-old men of European extraction, even if it turns out this man was not a terrorist. Which is it?

So don't blow your top, if you read my post it was fairly obvious.

Of course you are dishonest in your post with some bizarre reference to Pinochet's Chile, and made up suggestions that I might support him. To hint that misrepresents completely what I was implying.

The Security Service (called MI5 by some) had a legitimate task investigating communist activity against democracy in the UK. Since the unions were partly funded by the Soviet Union and were acting against democracy it was the Sevice's job to investigate them. To compare them with Chile is to suggest they used kidnap, torture and murder, but there is no suggestion that they did any of those things; unlike the NUM.

The Tory and Lib Dem reservations about aspects of the bill, and the Labour assurances (now shown definitely to be lies) are, I presume, on record. Most were voiced in committees and discussions rather than to the media, and before the issue came to parliament (to show public solidarity at a difficult time, which is undertandable if IMHO wrong, and seems to be the side you saw) but the less lazy media did pick up the issue.


That does not fit with what you said before, which iI took to imply that the economy improved soon after Clinton came to power and dipped just as he was leaving. Since economic policy takes a minimum of around 2 years to have significant impact anything in the first 2-4 years of an administration at the very least is a result of previous policy (and, as always, world events). If I have misread the timing then ask the GOP why they misrepresente the situation, not me. I said I would go by the timings you claimed, as I wouldn't know where to find that information.

The economy started to recover in the UK in the mid 90s as policy form the early 90s, devaluation post-ERM (which is a counter-example, a relatively quick-acting change, but notice is market not government-policy derrived) and improving world economy all helped us up. This continued through the first Labour term; at that time they followed Conservative policy, so it also continued good for the following term before the changes bit. The change of policy brought much higher government spending, which kept the public-sector economy buoyant and the private sector creeping up, while people got poorer (for the first time in many average take-home pay fell). This is unsustainable, as Brown has found, failing to meet his golden rule and so changing it. He will fall even harder because of that decision.

Mr Chips
30th Sep 2005, 13:32
Flypuppy I don't care who is independent, as long as the governing is fair. There was an issue recently (was it foxhunting or university fees, I forget) that would only affect England, but was only passed with the Scottish MPs votes. Please explain to me how that is fair and equitable, let alone representing the wishes and best interests of England?

Does any government truly have a mandate? Debatable. Does this rather p**s on any "form a decent opposition" argument.. well, in a way, i would (of course!) say yes... The Conservative party polled more votes in England.....

So what is the answer for fairer government? Lord knows.. I fear that PR gives a disproportianate voice for minorities. perhaps more actually listening to the electorate would be better, but our MPs are our representatives, not delegates (have I got that right?)

My local MP campaigned against expansion at Heathrow, but most of his constituents work there. Was he representing their views? I wonder....

No, I have no magic answer, but I am entitled to an opinion. That right still remains!

30th Sep 2005, 13:37

Do you like Brown? Honest question, from what I can see I would have thought he's done quite well for the UK economy and certainly the City seemed to take to him rather quickly.

Nobody's perfect of course and maybe it could be time for a change sooner then we think. Nothing ever stays the same.

Would you be willing to give Labour any credit at all for the UK's robust economic peformance over the number of years?

My politics on the economy would be right of centre. just for information purposes!

Send Clowns
30th Sep 2005, 13:57
In case you hadn't noticed, mine too :D

No, I don't like Brown. I wish that the impression of him was accurate.

He has cost me personally a lot of money when I had very little and was working hard to sort myself out. I could cope and in the end it will be good for me due to fewer pilots pushing pay up. Someone with parents who could not help, i.e. from the sort of poor background he should be helping, might have been forced to give up any idea of flying for a career.

He has also damaged the economy due to massive increase in paperwork, and has damaged private pensions (on which I rely for my retirement, as I have no company pension unlike Brown) and given a knock-on affect to the stock market, further suppressing pensions (the UK stock exchange is significantly underperforming). UK growth is now almost exclusive,ly in the public sector, where productivity has dropped to take up most of that growth and inflation is far greater than in the private sector. In other words there is more money cycling round but not a lot more being done.

Average take-home pay dropped last year. He is not even "reducing inequality" as he claims to wish to do (a ridiculous, headline-grabbing goal in my opinion, but that is a side issue), as the pay gap has increased between the low earners and high earners.

Overall savings in this country dropped to half what they were in 1997 before a slight recovery, and borrowing has increased massively. The only reason we're growing is because we're living beyond our means.

Make no mistake Brown is a left-wing chancellor. He just hides it well!

Nil nos tremefacit
1st Oct 2005, 00:18
Please, please, please e-mail [email protected] with your views on the conference.

Please head your e-mail 'Walter Wolfgang' and express your views on his ejection and the threat of anti-terrorist legislation to restrain him.

Please tell everyone you know and post on every forum you can. The target is 1 million e-mails to Labour HQ by Monday morning.

Let's go for it.:ok:

Nil nos tremefacit
1st Oct 2005, 09:42

Your link to the New Party is interesting, but remember that the party name is not new. Sir Oswald Moseley, a Labour MP, formed the New Party and renamed it the British Union of Fascists.

The question about 'whatever happened to UKIP' (apart from disastrous results in the 2 Scottish by-elections) is that the party conference is on 8th October and probably only then will UKIP know what's happened to UKIP.

1st Oct 2005, 12:03
As a Brit flyer living abroad, I can affirm that most people I speak to say that Tony Blair is one of the best PM's the UK has ever had (notwithstanding Iraq). Perhaps one reason why he has been reelected for yet another term.

The Conservative party is drifting into oblivion and has been since the days of Margaret. This country undoubtedly prefers slightly left of centre governments. Maybe the environment needs radical left-wing governments - unless world businessmen really start putting planet before profit....which I guess will never happen.

So guys and girls - we probably won't end up driving balloons! Our thirsty charges are good for a few years yet.

1st Oct 2005, 12:07
Well I have to say that "New Party" doesn't look like it's changed it's policies very much from Mosley's time either!

1st Oct 2005, 14:29

Interesting, that, isn't it? In France last summer, just after the euro-referendum every French person I spoke to was full of admiration for Blair. My son works in South America, and he recently reported on a Festival of Socialist Youth (or some such) in Caracas. He spoke to a Communist leader who, on realising that he was speaking to an Englishman, gave the thumbs-up sign and said "Tony Blair - very good".

A prophet is not without honour save in his own country............