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Archive for April, 2010

Gordon has a fit and accuses someone who is questioning his pensions tax policy of being a bigot

OK.

Prescot then says that it’s all a right wing press made up nonsense story, and that.….

Make no mistake, Gordon Brown was mugged – by a politically partisan media empire with no qualms about breaching privacy

Ok. And to prove this?

So let’s show them that Britain is not for sale. That an Australian with an American passport cannot buy our general election.

Or bigots, eh?

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From his loyal supporters;

As you may know, I have apologised to Mrs Duffy for remarks I made in the back of the car after meeting her on the campaign trail in Rochdale today.

I mean, I didn’t have any choice, did I? Fucking jurnos with their pesky hidden microphones that I agreed to have fitted so I didn’t look quite so dysfunctional in front of their fucking microphones. Fucking jurnos.

I would also like to apologise to you.

Seriously, guys (and I hope you are guys, not those old bigoted hags that my people say roam the countryside)

I know how hard you all work to fight for me and the Labour Party, and to ensure we get our case over to the public. So when the mistake I made today has so dominated the news, ….

bloody jurnos

doubtless with some impact on your own campaigning activities,…

bloody jurnos

I want you to know I doubly appreciate the efforts you make.

you bigoted tossers… sorry, I mean common folk

Many of you know me personally.

but fortunately, not all!

You know I have strengths as well as weaknesses. We all do.

See? Told you it was your fault, peasants.

You also know that sometimes we say and do things we regret. I profoundly regret what I said this morning.

I am under no illusions as to how much scorn some in the media will want to heap upon me in the days ahead.

see? fucking jurnos. Reporting things and stuff. Bastards, Don’t they know I’ve got an election to win? You know we give these cunts a script, and everything, don’t you? Upperty wankers then go and record their own stuff and put it out. I mean, I can’t work under these conditions. Tony never had to, you know.

But you, like I, know what is at stake in the days ahead

my pension, for instance

and so we must redouble our campaigning efforts to stop Britain returning to a Tory Party that would do so much damage to our economy,

unlike me, oh hang on

our society

erm…..

and our schools

erm…..

and NHS,

erm…..

not least in places like Rochdale.

The worst thing about today is the hurt I caused to Mrs Duffy,

which I tell you, was nothing compared to the cold stare Mandleson gave me. Jesus, that was harsh. I’ll get that bastard back after we win the election, I’ll tell you.

the kind of person I came into politics to serve.

over

It is those people I will have in my mind as I look ahead to the rest of the campaign.

and I think, all things considered, I’ll get away with it. Shit, I have for the last 11 years, for fucks sake!

You will have seen me in one context on the TV today.

fucking jurnos

I hope tomorrow you see once more someone not just proud to be your leader, but also someone who understands the economic challenges we face, how to meet them, and how that improves the lives of ordinary families all around Britain.

but ignore them two, they work for the other parties. I am your leader, you fucking bigots. Worship me! Worship me! Oh, have to pop off now, the nurse is here with my pills………..

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This is isn’t a car crash. It’s a multi lane, multi vehicle pile up on Britains busiest road. If Carlsberg did election fuck ups…

Here

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This has been done before, but it needs repeating again, and again, and again. Well done Lurch (and for getting a comment in to that effect on the papers comments section). Booze isn’t ‘cheaper than water’. I mean, how much does a pint of water cost from the tap in your local pub? I bet from a few pence to zero. So are pubs full of people staggering around with water intoxication?

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Dizzy blogs ‘6 reasons against, 6 reasons for’ a hung parliament here. It’s fairly rational stuff, but I fear hopelessly optimistic. What will happen in the, now quite likely, event of a hung parliament?

I see it like this;

1. In terms of the popular vote, I see it going Tory mid thirties, Fibbers very high twenties, or low thirties, Nu Labour mid to low twenties.

2. In terms of seats, I think we’ll end up with Tory – 280ish, Labour 240ish, Fibbers 100ish. I know these figures don’t exactly add up, thus the ‘ish’

3. Fibbers will go ballistic, quite rightly, as the skewed system has worked against them.

4. Gordon will be toast, replaced by a Blairite, such a one of the Miliband clones. This will enable to Fibbers to go into coalition, which they wouldn’t be able to do with Gordon or Bollocks, sorry, I mean Balls.

5. One of the conditions for coalition will be some kind of electoral reform. However, as the BNP will have done quite will in terms of the popular vote in some regions, the goody goody two shoes Fibbers will suddenly stop asking for proper PR, and will go for a system that guarantees that will will always have a left leaning, pro-EU, social democratic government, but smaller parties won’t get a look in, ever.

6.The markets will downgrade our credit rating. Financially, we will be screwed.

7. Sensing a weakened government, the Unions will go into full blown militant mode, preventing the required cuts from being made.

8. Realising the UK is totally weak, the EU, in conjunction with the Nationalists in Scotland and Wales (who will be bribed with the emperors clothes of greater autonomy within a further integrated EU), will pounce and extend the treaty to include full monetary and foreign policy union.

9. Nick Clegg will fail to back Conservatives calls for an in or out referendum at this point, because he is an unscrupulous bastard.

10. The UK will be regionalised, and the regional quangoes will be as democratic as the EU, i.e. not at all.

11. The UK will, in effect, become an occupied country.

12. I will look up ‘how to make semtex’ on the internet. This will look jolly complicated so I’ll just end up emigrating to a country where the beer and women are cheap, become a hopeless drunk who rants on in bars about ‘a country that once existed called the UK’. You lot will eventually get used to being serfs.

 

Overly pessimistic and paranoid? Discuss.

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… not the Fib Dems and their fibs, or Clegmania, or the complete disappearance from the political discussion of any mention of civil liberties and the nanny state (although all of these things are getting right on my tits), it is this single statement, that Labour (and even the Fib Dems St Vince) keep trotting out, again and again, without question from the medias political commentators..

 

‘policy xxx would take billions of pounds out of the economy’

Now, everyone with a GCSE understanding of economics knows that this is complete twaddle, unless policy ‘xxx’ involves burning piles of notes in the street. What is more likely is that policy ‘xxx’ involves letting you or a business keep and spend more of your own money, rather than the government taking it at the end of the gun and spending / wasting it as they see fit.

So it stays in the economy, doesn’t it, dumb asess?

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Planning fail

The normally slightly sensible John Redwood excites me here with a blog post title ‘Planning is the problem’. Hurrah!

But then it all falls horribly apart (all emphasis mine).

Many of the local issues people raise with me in the emails and on the doorsteps come from planning problems. Wokingham experienced a rapid rate of new development in the 1980s with the construction of Lower Earley and Woosehill. The campaign I and others waged then scaled Wokingham down from a fast growth area. Under the Labour government development still continued at a pace which eroded green gaps, placed more pressure on our stretched road and transport system and increased the demands on public services generally.

OK, well, I’ll tackle the ‘green gaps’ issue in a moment, but let us continue..

two of the worst features of this government’s approach has been to insist on much higher density development and to allow town cramming with backland development.

Don’t you see, Mr Redwood, the shrill of the NIMBY’s to ‘save our green belt’, ‘no development on green field sites’, etc, etc, was the seed that the uber-density housing on tiny plots grew. Restrict the amount of land available for development, and builders have only one place to go ~ cram as much in as possible.

The attractions of Wokingham and West Berkshire include a lot of good housing with decent plots and quiet residential roads, green gaps between villages and towns, and that pleasing mixture of town and countryside. There comes a point where intense development with high density new projects changes that characteristic too much. That is why I have worked hard to persuade the Conservative party that we need to change national planning policies if elected to government.

Oh dear, and this change will entail?

A Conservative governemnt would end the top down housing targets set by Whitehall and regional government. It would give to West Berkshire and Wokingham Councils powers to make local decisions about how much development is appropriate and where it should go. Given the pressures on four different areas within Wokingham Borough today, the sooner we get such a change at the top the better. I would then press the Councils to draw up new local plans that are sensitive to local wishes.

So, instead of crazy ‘top down’ planning policies, we get localised NIMBY’ism, with the housing ‘haves’ using councils to prevent the housing ‘have nots’ from building. It’s a classic case of corporatism for the house owning masses.

This is all wrong, but the problem isn’t ‘what planning should we have’, it’s planning itself. I don’t believe you can plan the part of the economy that is housing and development than you can ‘plan’ any other type of production or commerce. What we need to do is apply the central libertarian tennant that you can do what you like with your property, as long as it doesn’t infringe on the rights of others to do the same. The question is, how do we achieve this?

The plane, unpalatable truth, is that unless you have brought it, you don’t own the view from outside of you patio window. Therefore, it follows, that you have no more right to restrict whatever someone does with that than I do. This is the green belt fallacy. The house you are sitting in wasn’t put there by some kind of supreme being when he or she created the earth, nor was is formed by the big bang. So, if you are able to live in and own the house you are sat in, that would have ‘ruined’ someone else’s unspoilt wilderness / green space / view when it was built, where is the moral logic that you should be able to dictate that ‘all development stops here’?

But what happens if a row of houses are suddenly facing a massive, smoke belching, 24 hour noise creating, light blocking factory being built at the end of their gardens, that will make it impossible to live in their houses without going deaf and contracting rickets from lack of light, and unable to move as the value of their houses has now been reduced to zero? Clearly, this is a case where the factory developers freedom to do whatever he wants infringes on the rights of others to enjoy their property. So what to do?

The statist solution to this is planning, a black and white, yes or no, binary solution. But the two examples given here are extreme ends of a ever variable scale. At one end, we have a chap building a house in the middle of nowhere that doesn’t ruin anyone’s view, and at the other we have a development that will make life a physical and financial misery for others.

I would advocate that a simple solution would be one of implied consent, but with planning courts along the lines of small claims courts for people to object to a development if they could prove that the project would cause a reduction in the value of their property outside of that which was un-earned, e.g. the nice view over a field that they didn’t own.

The courts would be free to allocate compensation on the basis of the damage that would be caused, up to and including the value of their property, plus and moving costs and compensation for the inconvenience cause. But, and this is the important thing, the person objecting would be required to prove that they were due compensation, and the looser would always pay both parties costs.

Thus, the NIMBY’s would be forced to prove that any development would actually infringe on their right to enjoy their property, and the stink factory developer would be forced to pay 100% of the value of the effected properties, plus moving and inconvenience costs.

NIMBY’s would soon learn that objecting to each and every development would be a futile and expensive exercise, while the stink factory developer would choose a more suitable and financially viable site, e.g. next door to two other stink factories whose objection to any development would be laughed out of court. Smaller developments that caused minor inconveniences to existing owners would result in small compensatory payments between people if said inconvenience could be proven.

This would have two other advantages over planning laws stifling development. Firstly, as it stands, planning laws and local ‘plans’ favour big business. They have the resources to fight the expensive legal battles, employ consultants, and land bank sites in areas that are within the local ‘plan’. The presumed consent system would render this mute. Smaller developers, self builders, etc would be able to get back in on the act. Secondly, building would be organic, with only the types of houses being built that people actually wanted and were prepared to buy on the open market. As it stands, the planners dictate what can be built, which the big developers build, and people are forced to pay inflated prices for because of an artificial restriction of supply. This is the situation in Nottingham, where people are crying out for smaller homes with gardens, but local planning rules on ‘density’ have forced developers to build two bed flat after two bed flat due to artificial restrictions in the amount of available ‘will get planning’ land.

This type of assumed consent system might* even sway me over to the argument for using LVT to raise local taxes, but if, and only if, the tyranny that is ‘planning’ had long be designated to the dustbin of history, along with all other attempts to have a ‘planned’ economy.

 

 

* there are other problems I have with LVT, but this isn’t the point of the article

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