Thursday, June 5, 2008

Bit of down time

I'm working on some exciting projects at the moment so the blog will be a little on the silent side for the next few weeks.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Jacqui to cut crime with £250,000

Yes the BBC news reports that Jacqui Smith having consulted some behavioural experts is setting aside a whole £250,000 to tackle youth crime.
I presume after the jobsworths who will run this project get their cut of the pie there will be enough left to buy a packet of gold stars for the good boys and girls....

"Ms Smith, speaking in Westminster to an audience of professionals who deal with anti-social behaviour, announced £250,000 to fund an "action squad" which will encourage areas to better use such measures. "

You are having a laugh aren't you Jacqui?

The article goes on to talk about other sch measures as harassing teenagers who cause trouble to make sure they aren't claiming benefit fraud, have paid for the TV license on their plasma screen TV, have insured their car, paid their council tax....

Hang on, but they are TEENAGERS what the hell is the chance that a 14 year old kid is going to be paying half the taxes above? Shouldn't they be at school.

I'll leave you to read the rest of this half witted approach by Labour. The only benefit in the article seems to be that reported by Essex police, who actually seem to be doing some policing. Wow that's a novel idea!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Yorkshire Post tackle Common Purpose

Hot from the Yorkshire printing press comes this article....

Elite trainer gets 11-year state freebie - Yorkshire Post
Published Date: 06 May 2008 By Rob Waugh

A TRAINING provider which has enjoyed privileged access to Downing Street has been given free office accommodation in a Government department for the last 11 years, the Yorkshire Post can reveal today. Common Purpose, which has run elite training seminars at Number 10, was granted free office space at the Department for Children, Schools and Families in Sheffield in 1997 and has enjoyed its use ever since.
A Freedom of Information request from the Yorkshire Post revealed the accommodation, which is fully serviced and includes the free use of phones, has a commercial value of £5,000 per year.

The DCSF admits it has no formal record of the decision being made and no rental or tenancy agreement of any kind. It is one of several Government departments that has paid thousands of pounds to Common Purpose to provide training courses.

A spokeswoman said the free office accommodation had been given in line with the policy of the then Education Secretary David Blunkett, a Sheffield MP, who had wanted to build better links with the local community.But Philip Davies, Conservative MP for Shipley, has criticised the relationship between Government and Common Purpose, which is both a limited company and registered charity. He believes the organisation, whose training "graduates" include officials from a wide variety of public sector organisations, is used primarily for networking.

Mr Davies asked why Common Purpose was granted free office space when other organisations are not and is set to raise Common Purpose's charitable status with the Charity Commission in the light of the fees it charges, some of which are in excess of £5,000 per course."Common Purpose has all the hallmarks of a networking organisation for the top brass within the public sector in particular, and it seems to be rather shy of putting the content of its training into the public domain which seems unusual for a charitable organisation."I think that taxpayers are entitled to know why so much of their money should be given to Common Purpose both in terms of free accommodation and in training costs," he said.

Parliamentary questions from Mr Davies directed to Government departments revealed several had paid substantial sums to Common Purpose, with the Department for Work and Pensions paying £238,000 between 2002/03 and 2006/07.

The DCSF paid for contracts worth a total of nearly £52,000 between 2004 and 2005 and a total of £11,600 between 2006 and 2007 to send officials on training courses.The department said the provision of free office accommodation had "no bearing" on the decision to pay Common Purpose to provide training. It said procurement practices aimed at ensuring the provision of appropriate, value for money training would have been followed.A spokeswoman said: "Common Purpose is a charitable organisation which provides leadership development by bringing together leaders from private, public and the voluntary sectors."We appreciate that notwithstanding our good intentions, record-keeping could be improved, which is why we have decided that we should now agree more formally the terms of tenancy in such cases.
"Common Purpose said it was not the only charity that had use of office space in Government buildings. DCSF said it had provided a small amount of office space to an organisation called Learn to Lead at its Moorfoot building in Sheffield and to the Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education in Caxton House in London. The department declined to respond when asked for details about Learn to Lead which is not a registered charity.
It did confirm that neither had been paid to provide any services.A Common Purpose spokeswoman said: "In pursuit of our charitable objects, we run educational programmes for leaders and decision-makers across all sectors and at every stage of their career. Participants (or their organisations) pay a tuition fee in order to take part.

We are able to offer some bursary assistance for those applicants who do not have the means to pay the full tuition fee and otherwise wouldn't be able to access our programmes."She added that courses had a wide diversity of participants with around one third from the public sector and the remainder from the private and not-for-profit/voluntary sectors.Mr Blunkett acknowledged that when he took over as Education Secretary in 1997 he had been keen to "stimulate a greater contribution to Sheffield by the Department, which is a major employer in the city".This had taken the form of a range of activities.

He added that as part of this initiative, legitimate, non-profit, organisations that contributed to the development of the city were rented premises– although he made it clear he was not party to the detailed decision-making to offer rent-free office space.Mr Blunkett said: "I understand that Common Purpose is a leadership organisation that would fit that criteria. If Common Purpose were not, or are not, making that contribution then they shouldn't have the offices."

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Furthering the Devolution debate

I'd be interested to hear what you the reader thinks about the current situation with regards to Cornwall, The Orkneys and the Shetlands being recognised as seperate political entities.
I plan to do some research on the topic and gauge what support there is in these places for seperation from England/Scotland and see whether these movements are large or whether it's a small band of individual pushing for seperation.

So let's have your views.....

Friday, April 25, 2008

Calamity in the Mayor race

If any of you have caught the BBC this morning you will see the article below:

It would appear that Matt was concerned over the following:

"Explaining his decision to stop campaigning with less than a week to go before polling day, Mr O'Connor said he had been unhappy with the lack of coverage he was getting from the media. "

Well what did he expect? Honestly I am sure Matt knew exactly the level of support the Beeb where going to give him, hence why he engaged in those stunts.

Moving on he then says:

He told presenter Vanessa Feltz: "We've just had St George's Day and you would just think the one thing a party about England would own would be St George's Day.
With the benefit of hindsight I probably should not have stood for them
Matt O'Connor, former English Democrat candidate
"But I don't think they got any publicity at all and I was effectively sidelined. I think they thought I was going to take over the party or something."

Well as far as I am aware a lot of the English Nationalist movement went to London to protest for an English parliament on St George's Day, I think maybe Matt has misunderstood that the movement is bigger then one man and one party. I also saw the rather inventive EDP St George's Day website, so maybe Matt wasn't aware of it?

Obviously the EDP have released a press statement which you can read below:

It would seem that from reading this blog, Matt O'Connor had alcohol problems, which is truly a shame. If this turns out to be true it's probably best for the people of London he has pulled out. It's also good for the English Nationalist movement. We need a competent Mayor not a drunkard following in the footsteps of Red Ken with a shot of Whiskey for breakfast.

There could be an upside to this though, maybe people will use Matt's name on the ballot paper as a protest vote, as basically a none of the above.

Regardless of what happens the English movement will always have it's ups and downs, and when you hit the bottom the only way to go is up.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

English Tax Reforms

We have discussed briefly how a devolved parliament in England could work with counties, but what about our tax raising powers?

Tax is of course something an independent or devolved parliament should seek to take control of from the British state immediately. Our first task should be a complete revision of the tax system on a scale not seen in the past century.

Our first task would be the abolition of the Income Tax and Corporate Tax. I can already see the socialists wringing their hands and crying "think of the children". We actually I am...

By scrapping our Income Tax and Corporate Tax we would see a massive boost in our economy. Detailing every benefit and how it works is out of scope of this article, but I intend to provide you to some links so you can read up on it more if you are interested.

So yes we would be removing the Income Tax meaning all persons employed in England would receive wages at the end of each month without the government having grabbed a big chunk of it. You are probably wondering how we could afford to do this? Well we would increase the tax on products sold. Essentially VAT would be scrapped and a tax of around 22% placed upon products being sold new. The Inland Revenue would then only have the task of collecting Sales Tax from those who have sold new products. Surely the administrative task of this compared to our current system will save millions in tax payers money alone.
Combined with scrapping Corporate Tax we will not only encourage businesses to invest as well as stimulate entrepreneurs we will save these people millions in administration.
If anyone thinks a company can be taxed itself you are wrong. Any tax raises against a company are paid for either by:

1.) The consumer through price rises (so essentially you are paying the tax hike).
2.) The employee's through loss of jobs or benefits and pay (so essentially they are paying the tax hike).
3.) The share holders through loss of dividends (so essentially pension plans etc. are paying the tax hike).

When you read about socialists taxing companies they aren't, they are taxing you and me and your neighbours. They are stifling growth and stagnating the market. They are also pushing the richer members of societies as well as companies into storing their wealth off shore in places like the Isle of Mann, Jersey, Switzerland etc.
Can you imagine the benefit of having these companies move their headquarter back to England? Can you imagine the difference of having billions pumped back into the economy as companies move their finances back to England?
Can you imagine the investment we could look at pumping into somewhere like Birmingham and creating a SECOND financial centre in England?
Forget the Scots whinging over North Sea Oil, they can keep the lot, it's a finite resource and no doubt the socialists up there will tax it to death.

So is it possible that a 22% sales tax could replace Income and Corporate Tax and still provide the services we need such as a roads, health etc? Yes it is.
There would have to be massive reform of our social services, benefits system, QUANGOs at the same time. This will be painful to the lazy who think benefit fraud is a way of life, the faux charities leeching of the public, but it will be a blessing to the disabled and ill who want to get out there and live their life like any other Englishman. The money diverted away from the QUANGOs and parasites the Labour government have spawned could be pumped into health care.
We wouldn't even need to replace our NHS with a broken system like the US private health care mess.

This system of taxation would require a lot of research before hand, economic models to be built, and any potential pitfalls investigated before, but the question is... why aren't we doing that?

If you are interested in how, why and when we should implement this system then I recommend you read the following links. I'll also point out we are better off doing it sooner rather then later, as somebody else may pip us to it.

Links: - Fair Tax (US) - A guide to the US proposed system - Flat rate income tax proposed for UK. - LPUK guide to income tax.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Cheers! Wæs Hæl!

Well everyone have a great evening, I am now off out to celebrate.

Wæs Hæl!

The battle for Mayor online....

Did anyone else recieve the Saint George's Day email with the below link in it (I included it in my earlier post as well).....

It would appear the English Democrats have taken their campaign to the web for the upcoming election and released a cartoon for St George's Day.

This makes me wonder if we are going to see much of the battle for Mayor take place online, much like Ron Paul's campaign in the US?

The English Democrats aren't the only party to start using animation to promote their message, the Green Party designed the whole of their party political broadcast in a Flash animation style format which can obviously easily be transferred into a web medium.

The advance of web campaigning I believe is going to make it very difficult in future for polling agencies to really get an idea of who will vote for what!

Happy St George's Day

Yes April 23rd has come around again. I spent the day last year in London celebrating, and this year I'm also going to be toasting England and having a jolly good time of it as I have the day off work.

Here are some fun St George's Day sites I've been emailed for you to have a chuckle at:

Have a great day everybody.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Vision of a post British England and it's counties

Our shire based system stretches back well over a thousand years, maybe in an independent England it's time to recognise them again.

Scrap regional assemblies, return to the "county" system

I believe in an independent Kingdom of England our first task would be to dismantle the regional assemblies and the apparatus that has sprung up around them. These various bodies suck hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers money in and return very little. They are thoroughly un-democratic and do not meet the needs of the people.
Our first step in an English parliament would be to return England back to it's traditional "county" structure.
There has already been some attempt by vigilante groups to enforce the traditional counties, Wikipedia details the direct action here.
So I use the term "county" in the loosest possible term, why you ask? Well although the word county was introduced by the Normans to cover the old Anglo-Saxon shire system as well as Anglo-Saxon kingdoms that where merged into England e.g. Sussex and Kent, we still use the term and apply it to areas of England which aren't strictly counties in the Norman sense of the word. From now on when I refer to county or counties I am meaning all subdivisions of England to make things easier.
So an independent England should be looking to re-instate the various ancient recognised boundary systems given to us by our Anglo-Saxon and Norse/Danish forebears each with their rights and privileges.
So in the case of shires - Hertfordshire, Berkshire etc. and in the case of old kingdom marked boundaries - Essex, Sussex and re-instating Middlesex etc.
The Kingdom of England also included duchies. The two duchies are the Duchy of Lancaster and the Duchy of Cornwall. Duchy status should be recognised correctly, and the inhabitants of such areas given a choice on how the Crown should be continued to recognised in said areas with regards to property rights etc.
If counties chose to rename districts within themselves back to their original names such Richmondshire within Yorkshire etc. this should be up to the local people to decide.
By handing the power back from Westminster to the counties and recognising the various powers they where granted over time, we are handing back local democracy to the people.
When doing this we would allow the people to choose how their county was governed, this could allow the substitution of county councils for in the case of Cornwall the Stannary parliament, or in the case of Peterborough recognising it as a Soke and granting it the powers it once held.

So why all this concern over the ancient county system, I'm sure many are thinking, "but it's all in the past" and" not relevant to today" and "things well, change".

Yes things do change, but as often has been the case these changes are forced upon people, laws are ignored and parts of our cultural heritage are lost in the process. People may ask, well does it matter if it's called a county or a duchy... try telling a Cornishman they live in a shire and try telling a Geordie Newcastle isn't part of Northumberland (it may not be under government legislation, but it used to be and for many older folk still is).
How much of our Anglo-Saxon heritage has been lost in places such as East Anglia as the dialects of Norfolk and Suffolk are slowly killed off and they are pushed into an "East of England" euro region?

England does not need artificial boundaries created by bureaucrats in offices far away from the people their decisions effect. Our boundaries have been created through time and are representative of the true diversity of England, not the forced multi-cultural and Euro-British diversity of Westminster.

So what would the revised county system involve? This system would be part of the independent parliament of England's set up. Essentially the new Westminster would be responsible for the matters which the British government handles for England. The new English parliament would then hand back any power to the counties, shires, sokes and duchies that had been removed from them by the British government.
Ideally we would see a situation where in England there was no such thing as licensing hours for pubs as an example. County councils would be responsible for licensing premises and if they deemed it necessary issuing zones where pubs could only stay open to 11:30 if this was in the interest of the local people. Since ideally the county, parish and town council system will be made up of locals, these people are far more likely to understand local issues then a government in London, especially a cabinet in London dominated by MP's from devolved countries.
County councils will also be responsible for local heritage initiatives, history, some areas of education i.e. local English customs, culture and preservation of tradition, control over planning and also the types of buildings and the material that housing firms can use in some cases.
This would prevent the current situation where Westminster forces housing quotas and Eco-Towns on some areas of the country, where they are not wanted. It could also selectively force building firms to use local materials such as flint, stone, wood and slate rather then building identi-kit Lego houses which can damage the scenic nature of an area. This could be achieved through zoning as well. The English parliament along with the county councils should also enforce existing green belt legislation.

County councils could also implement strategies in their areas on second home ownership and property taxes. One thing we have learnt is that one size does not fit all, and the British governments attempts at forcing through legislation that effects the whole of England can have adverse effects on some counties and not on others.
The ability for county councils in places such as Norfolk and Westmorland to limit second home ownership or tax it at high levels could help to cut down the number of empty holiday homes that have priced locals out of the market.

The English government would also be duty bound to remove the vast layers of legislation implemented by Labour. Much of this effects peoples liberties and freedoms and squashes peoples rights. I believe the best way to do this is for the English parliament to be at heart of returning power to the electorate through local county level electable bodies which report back to the English parliament through a combination of ways, including MP's.

Could the above address such issues as:

1.) Resentment in Westmorland at holiday homes,
2.) Prevent Norfolk fishermen being priced out of the North Norfolk coast
3.) Address the calls for Cornwalls recognition as a duchy and trading the county council for a Stannary parliament
4.) Give the people of Middlesex their county back
5.) Hand local planning issue back to the people
6.) Prevent situation like the Monmouthshire and Berwick debacle happening again

I believe so.

Whether Cornwall in the future would chose to separate from England would obviously be down to a democratic means to decide, I would hope they didn't and recognition of their unique history, like the unique history of every county, duchy and shire within a unified England should be guaranteed.