Posts Tagged 'Contempt'



All hail Cam Jong-Eu, Ever-Victorious, Cast Iron-Willed Commander

Cam Jong-Eu, Highest Incarnation of the Revolutionary Supranational Love, has spoken. His unique abilities have given him the power to look into the hearts and minds of men and know what they will think and feel in the future, before they themselves are even aware of it.

The evidence…

First, despite there being no treaty amendment on the immediate horizon for him to take advantage of, or any likelihood of an intergovernmental conference being called by Herman Van Rompuy, he is confident of getting the undefined changes he wants in the UK’s ‘relationship’ with Europe (the EU).

Second, despite many polls showing a majority of Britons saying they would vote to leave the EU if there was an straight in/out referendum, and he has refused to ask the people to decide themselves, he asserts the ‘beating heart of Britain’ knows we need to remain in the European Union.

We are truly blessed to have the all-knowing, all-wise Cam as our provincial governor.

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We’re all in this together – on scandalous wind power deals

As David Cameron announced the austerity measures that would be taken in the UK by the coagulation government, he was very fond of repeatedly telling voters ‘we’re all in this together‘.

It may not have been true when it came to the financial hardship many have experienced due to this so called austerity.  But it certainly was true – and remains true – when it comes to describing the political class working against the interest of the poor bloody energy consumer by agreeing insane deals for wind power.  It has resulted in a glaring example of the damage that is caused when lazy consensus politics is coupled with idiots, who have no experience of the real world, seeking to demonstrate their virtue:

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Yes, that’s right.

… a scheme agreed by Labour leader Ed Miliband during the last Labour government, but implemented by Coalition ministers,

No questioning, no challenge, no scrutiny.  Just a huge commitment made with other people’s money so the politicians can indulge their deluded wet dreams of being seen as ‘green’ and taking action to ‘fight climate change’.  This is a party political scandal.  Labour, Conservatives and Liberal Democrats – oh yes, they’re all in it together, ripping off the taxpayer and exhibiting a degree of incompetence that is enough to make this blogger reconsider his position on euthanisia.

Following the MPs damning report into the wind farm contracts, the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has now said it will “re-examine some of the terms” of the lucrative deals.

Too little, too late.

Under the terms of the contracts the companies are guaranteed an RPI inflation linked income for 20 years regardless of how much the infrastructure is used.

The estimated returns of 10-11 per cent on the initial licences “look extremely generous given the limited risks”, the MPs said.

And where were the MPs when all this was being set up?  Asleep at the wheel, or drifting around Westminster with their thumbs up their bums and their brains in neutral, doing what the whips told them?

Millions of votes swing between these parties at general elections as voters seek to punish unpopular governments.  Perhaps the message will soon get through to voters that voting for any of this consensus of careerist power-seekers results in an identical outcome and real change will only come about if voting for none of them removes their legitimacy.  Otherwise the faces might change and the colour of the rosettes may differ, but everything else stays the same to the detriment of this country and its long suffering people.

We don’t need change, we need a grassroots revolt to end this elected dictatorship.  The power of dictatorships comes from the willing obedience of the people they govern – and if the people develop techniques of withholding their consent, a regime will crumble.  It’s in our hands to take back power.

The UK has no business being part of the vile United Nations

In the Telegraph, Christopher Booker’s column leads with a story about the Met Office (h/t EU Referendum) – which quietly revised its prediction of global temperatures for the next five years and uploaded the much changed graph on Christmas Eve, a great day to bury inconvenient news – and why its forecasts are undermined by dogmatic climate change assumptions.

It’s an excellent reminder of the Met Office’s dereliction of duty in pursuit of an agenda, just as the country is being hit by another of those temperature drops and downfalls of snow that were supposed to be replaced by ‘warmer winters’, following the soaking summer which was supposed to have been replaced with ‘hotter, drier’ conditions.  But it is the second part of Booker’s column that focuses on a story of far greater importance – UN complicity in the mistreatment and killing of refugees in Iraq’s Camp Ashraf.

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Camp Ashraf is yet another United Nations scandal where backroom agendas, intrigues and double dealing has resulted in a number of lives being lost violently with many other people’s lives put in peril.

But what else would one expect when the UN treats people with such unmitigated contempt, for example when Gadaffi’s Libya was appointed Chair of the UN Human Rights Committee?  The same UN which in November last year went on to elect genocidal Sudan to the Economic and Social Council, a top U.N. body that regulates human rights groups, oversees U.N. committees on women’s rights, and crafts resolutions from Internet freedom to female genital mutilation. And it really surpassed itself when Mauritania, the world’s worst offender for slavery, was elected to the position of Vice President of the UN Human Rights Council – on Human Rights Day of all days.  This while Syria remained on the UNESCO human rights committee!

Lets not forget the UN’s sex for food scandal and UN officials being complicit as police and troops working on behalf of the UN in Bosnia were exposed as being involved in sex trafficking of young women – behaviour that was brought to the big screen with the film The Whistleblower.  It even extolled the virtues of China’s human rights record and its supposed respect for oppressed Uyghurs, Tibetans and other minority groups.

To describe this small handful of examples as Orwellian would be ludicrous understatement.  Yet despite all of these scandals in recent years and many, many others besides, the UN continues to be paid for by us, the hard pressed taxpayers around the world, our money taken from us by the political class to fund this insanity.

The UN, a global organisation made up of unaccountable bureaucrats and representatives from countries including brutal and oppressive regimes over which we have no control, wields a huge amount of power around the world through its commissions and agencies.  It is responsible for the pushing the sustainability cover story for the plan to increase its control over world governance via the insipid Agenda 21, while directly influencing what economic actions the EU follows through its Economic Commission for Europe, UNECE.

So, not for the first time, this blog asks the question, what is the point of continuing to bang our heads against a wall and fund an organisation that serves the interests of the international community so poorly? Going further this blog believes the time has long since passed for the UK to withdraw its membership.  The UN is not a force for good.  All too often it is the vehicle that facilitates the worst crimes human can commit.

Leaving the UN won’t happen all the while the political class directs operations in its own interest, but it should happen.  This country has no place cooperating with the most brutal, vicious and corrupt regimes on this planet, much less legitimising their vile behaviour with our money co-membership on UN bodies.

The Norway influence saga – what does it all mean?

Judging by the amount of people visiting this blog, EU Referendum, Witterings from Witney and The Boiling Frog; and those reading the articles and comments left on the Open Europe blog and at the Telegraph, there is a lot of interest in alternatives to EU membership.

David Cameron’s repeated claim – echoed by Tories, Lib Dems, Open Europe and a raft of media commentators – that he doesn’t think it’s right to aim for a status like Norway or Switzerland because you have to obey all the rules of the single market but you don’t have a say over what they are, has been exposed as a lie.

Over the course of several days, a small band of bloggers working independently, along with a larger number of casual commenters, have presented a raft of evidence that utterly refutes the claim and proves Cameron completely wrong. So what does it all mean? Let’s summarise it.

The reality is Norway, as a member of EFTA and part of the EEA has a veto, and has influence in shaping decision relating to the single market that even the UK doesn’t. Whether it chooses to use the veto and how it decides to shape legislative decisions is of course a matter for itself. But the influence demonstrably exists in no small measure.

The evidence is inescapable that Cameron has deliberately attempted to deceive the public, aided by the disgraceful media, as part of an establishment effort to hide workable alternatives to EU membership and pretend that outside the EU we would just have to accept whatever Brussels churns out.

For all their talk of renegotiation and repatriation of powers, the establishment wants to stay firmly inside the EU and therefore leave Brussels in overall control of the UK. They are committed to political union.

That is the issue here. The politicians are being dishonest and they have been caught out, but the media is turning a blind eye, treating the British people with cyncial contempt. The UK can not only survive outside the EU, it can thrive. The politicians, with their vested interests and with their media puppets in tow, just don’t want people to know.

Open Europe displays its europhile Closed Mind

Returning home this evening I intended to draw attention to a piece in the Barclay Brother Beano.  However Richard has done it justice already, so rather than spend time recreating the story with slightly less panache, here is how Richard sets the scene on EU Referendum…

Unable to fight his corner even on his own blog, after the assertions he made on Norway were challenged, Mats Persson of Open Europe has scuttled off to his Telegraph clog, repeating his propaganda in the hope of reaching a more gullible audience.

However, while desperate to support the Cameron line that Norway, within the EFTA/EEA matrix has “no say” over the framing of EU rules, Persson has been forced to concede that Norway does indeed have some input on the framing of laws. All he will grudgingly allow, though, is that “Oslo has exceptionally limited ability to influence them”.

There’s more where that came from, once again exposing Persson’s shallow and ill-informed assertions for the misleading rubbish they are.

The comments section under the post in the Beano are a joy to behold as they almost universally rip little Mats’ argument to shreds.  Christmas may have come and gone but one Persson is still working as Cameron’s EuroElf.  However the goodies coming out of the sack are shoddy imitations and already broken before they have been opened.

Telegraph’s hack pack continues ramping up the pro-EU narrative

If anyone was in any doubt that the Barclay Brothers’ Telegraph is planting its flag firmly on europhile ‘in’ campaign ground, then their Head of Business, Damian Reece, has provided clear evidence of it in that comic, declaring in a piece titled ‘We may soon need Europe more than Europe needs us’ that:

For as long as I have been in work I’ve been writing about Europe’s single currency in one way or another, from the Exchange Rate Mechanism to a eurozone break-up.

We could try to negotiate our own bilateral trade agreements but given our market of 60m people we’re unlikely to win such attractive terms as a market such as the EU’s 500m.

All that time I’ve maintained a stubborn opposition to Britain’s membership. But now an equally difficult choice is looming, which centres on what sort of Europeans do we want to be or, perhaps more realistically, what sort of Europeans can we be?

Having spent years currying favour with its readers with various criticisms of the EU, now that push is coming to shove the Telegraph’s hack pack is declaring itself for the UK to stay firmly inside the EU pumping out evidence-free strawman articles and commentary, while downplaying or completely ignoring every negative aspect of membership.  For example, in light of a raft of opinion polls how could Reece have possibly concluded that:

There is a consensus here that the UK must retain its membership of the single market but that we should remain outside the single currency.

Where there is evidence that Reece’s assertions simply don’t stand up to scrutiny, he simply dismisses it, as he does in this little section:

But as the brakes come off world trade, the biggest beneficiaries will be members of the biggest trading blocs. Those outside these groups risk missing out on the biggest benefits of multilateralism and trying to join after the event risks less favourable terms. We could try to negotiate our own bilateral agreements but given our market of 60m people we’re unlikely to win such attractive terms as a market such as the EU’s 500m. It’s true the likes of Switzerland do it but I don’t believe we should be aspiring to be Switzerland — no offence to the Swiss.

So his argument is undermined by evidence that the Swiss, a much smaller entity than the UK, successfully negotiate bi-lateral agreements. So to deal with that inconvenient fact he puts up another strawman that we shouldn’t be aspiring to be like the Swiss.  Eh?  That’s the only way he can make his argument stand up?  Such deep thinking.

The even more inconvenient fact Reece dodges is that Switzerland – with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein – make up the EFTA group of countries. and they do have real influence along with all-important independence.  The EFTA countries are highly competitive, open economies representing a sizeable market with strong per capita purchasing power.  There is always an option for Britain to join that bloc, if only as a temporary step, and that bloc could easily cooperate to secure attractive world trade terms.  Indeed, EFTA could easily transform itself into something different and even more beneficial.  But of course when europhilia is coursing through one’s veins, one is blinded to any alternative to remaining in the EU’s unnecessary and anti-democratic political union.

It seems the only europhile argument is that we should sacrifice this country’s ability to govern itself in return for the illusion of ‘influence’ and access to a market that is in any case open to other countries outside the EU.  And Reece is buying in to it along with the mythical renegotiation meme pushed by the Tories and their little helpers that still leaves the EU in control of the UK.

As faith in the political class is at an all time low and still falling, thankfully so is faith in the fourth estate as the disdain and mistrust extends out to encompass the whole establishment – a point Lord Justice Leveson would do well to grasp.  That much is clear from reading the almost 900 comments the overwhelmingly majority of which ridicule, challenge and deconstruct Reece’s supposed new-found europhilia.

But the important fact to take from all this is the establishment is setting itself against the wishes of the people, therefore serving interests other than ours.

It will necessitate an organic, grassroots campaign of a type not adopted here before, reaching out directly to the electorate to explain why leaving the EU will be beneficial for this country.  It’s the only way a positive message can be presented that by-passes the lies and distortions of the political class and their poodles in the mainstream media.  Battle needs to be joined for the future of the United Kingdom.

Arse kissing establishment BBC scum

Strongly worded title perhaps. But after the previous post from the early hours of this morning that’s the cleaned up version of the description of the hypocritical parasites known as the BBC. Moments ago on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme John Humphrys interviewed Margaret Hodge, champagne socialist chairman of the Public Accounts Select Committee.

Yet again Hodge took the platform afforded to her to describe companies who legally structure their headquarters and finances to pay tax overseas instead of here in the UK as ‘immoral’.  She proudly informed Humphrys that she no longer shops at Amazon or drinks at Starbucks as a result.  This despite the revelation that the family business Hodge herself owns shares in – and allegedly uses tax minimising measures to hold others in trust and in children’s names – pays just 0.01pc tax on £2.1bn of business generated in the UK.

But that of course is ok for a taxpayer soaking, troughing hypocrite like Hodge, who last year allegedly earned from her £1.8million worth of shares a dividend from Stemcor of more than £56,000 – much greater than the gross pay of the vast majority of the population.

Despite this knowledge, John Humphrys either took the decision not to challenge this hypocrisy, followed an editorial decision not to bring it up or timidly accepted a demand from Hodge not to bring it up (we will never know because any FOI request to discover the truth will be met with the standard refusal because the information is supposedly held for the purposes of ‘journalism, art or literature,’).

This is the contemptible establishment at work.  Whipping up discord, hysteria and resentment among sections of society over perfectly legal behaviour, but in cowardly fashion carefully evading scrutiny of their own alleged behaviour by simply omitting any mention of it.  Yes, scum.

When will the state’s increasingly untrammelled power become ‘too much’?

‘You have money and we are taking it.’  This increasingly the attitude of the British government and its agencies and it is a phenomenon stretching across Europe and into the Americas.

In fairness to the state it has played a blinder.  It has successfully turned one part of society, the less well off, more aggressively against better off members of society, despite the fact the less well off stand to gain nothing from an increase in the tax take.  The only beneficiary is the government which possesses an almost limitless capacity for squandering the money and leaving the country with nothing to show for it.

What used to be simple envy or disdain of the better off has been transformed into resentment and outright hostility.  The media has been an willing accomplice, fanning the flames and parroting a narrative that anyone who seeks to keep their tax liabilities to a minimum is somehow being unfair to the rest of society, not paying their fair share and by definition morally repugnant.

The hostility first became entrenched when it was directed at the lavishly remunerated corporate officers and the bonus happy bankers.  But now it has broadened to encompass anyone who is not an average PAYE employee.

Never mind that many of those people being subjected to unjust anger have taken huge risks to build businesses and create jobs, while working 18 hour days, going without holidays, not being able to spend time with their families and working when unwell because there is no luxury of sick pay to fall back on.  No, unless their pockets are being turned out to satisfy the state’s fetish for controlling how their money is spent, without any form of consultation or consent, they are the most selfish scum of the earth.

So it is against that backdrop of sown division, mistrust and resentment that two stories this weekend combine to paint a picture of our elected and supposed representatives running out of control, rigging the rules against the ‘ordinary’ citizens to suit ideological interests they have adopted from a plethora of unelected and unaccountable bodies that are positioning themselves as a de facto global administration.

The first story concerns the shocking actions of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) falsely accusing a company’s directors of fraud, shutting down the company making over 30 people unemployed and using draconian powers that prevent the former owners from challenging the action through the courts while pressuring them to settle the accusation with payment to cover the alleged £7 million in taxes and duties.  There was no evidence.  All this happened on the basis of a suspicion that something fraudulent was going on.  Indeed, HRMC’s defence of their actions was to state there was no evidence the company wasn’t acting fraudulently, a clear inversion of the principles of justice.

The second story concerns HRMC tearing up the basic principles of privacy and data protection.  At the behest of the government, HRMC is to use credit reference agencies to cross-check details of the income people declare on their tax returns against their spending patterns to identify “high” and “medium” risks of both illegal and legal tax avoidance.  As we have said on this blog and Twitter before, tax evasion is a crime, but tax avoidance is perfectly legal.  So why should HMRC bother checking to see if people are legally minimising their tax liability?  The clue can be found in the comment by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander:

“It is simply not fair that at a time when most people are making a contribution to balancing the nation’s books, there is a small minority of taxpayers who try to escape their responsibility.”

Really? Who determines what is ‘fair’?  Never mind that some of these people pay more in tax each year than a lot of other people earn.  Never mind the risks and sacrifices many of them have made as detailed above.  No, they are supposedly escaping their ‘responsibility’ – a word the definition of which governments of every stripe over the last 20 years or more have simply not grasped and believe to be a one-way street that travels in their direction.

We are witnessing a concerted effort to demonise those who have something the government wants in order to enable the government to use nefarious mechanisms to obtain it.  In the eyes of the government – as it stokes up the spiteful societal divisions it is fostering by using vocal members of the less well off as useful idiots to demand exactly that which the government wishes to do – this state over reach is justified for being a populist measure demanded by the public.  And for fear of kneejerk vilification, by the unthinking useful idiots and hypocritical, comfortably wealthy trough hogging politicians, many reasonable and right thinking people who see the wrong-headedness of the government’s behaviour and irresponsible waste of our resources, keep quiet.  This is the UK in 2012.

Small wonder we see cries of frustration such as this in response to the tightening grip our supposed servants are exerting on ordinary people.  Common sense is evaporating and manipulation of the people by those who make the rules is all pervasive.  What will it take before the slumbering masses wake up and realise the state’s self conferred and increasingly untrammelled power has become too much?  When will people take the power back?

Cameron demonstrates his contempt for people power yet again

According to the Barclay Brother Beano, Cast Iron Dave is set to announce that residents’ rights to mount legal challenges to controversial development projects will be severely restricted.

Having been briefed on what is coming, the Torygraph’s James Kirkup goes on to explain:

‘Mr Cameron will argue that the rules are being abused to frustrate economically vital developments and will say a “massive growth industry” of seeking judicial reviews of planning decisions has been fuelled by solicitors and campaign groups.

‘Many applicants are guilty of “time-wasting” and bringing “hopeless cases” simply to waste developers’ time, the Prime Minister will say. He will outline a number of changes the Government wants to make, including shortening the three-month time limit on applying for a review.

‘Charges for an application will rise “so people think twice about time-wasting.” The number of possible appeals against decisions will also be cut from four to two.’

The Boiling Frog hasn’t wasted any time showing up Cameron’s forthcoming comments for what they are… yet another flip flop from a Prime Minister without a single principled bone in his body.  There is another more serious issue here concerning the widening gulf between the pledges politicians make to the people in order to try to win an election, and the reality once they have taken office.  Consider these quotes and compare them with what Kirkup says Cameron plans to say:

We have a coherent programme to fix our broken politics and drag our democracy into the post-bureaucratic age. It involves a massive, sweeping, radical redistribution of power – from the political elite to the man and woman in the street.

[…] Conservatives start with an instinctive desire to give people more power and control over their lives.
– David Cameron, ‘Giving power back to the people’ speech on 25 June 2009

and

You can see the nature of the change we want in the phrase itself…

…literally going from a bureaucratic world, where the old methods like regulation, laws and diktats allow elites in Westminster to control other people’s lives…

…to a post-bureaucratic world, where instead of government telling people what to do or forcing them to do it…

…people themselves have far more power and control over their lives…

…and where we achieve change by trying to influence people by going with the grain of human nature.

So it’s about giving power to people.

And it’s about showing an understanding of people, in how we make policy and design government and public services.
– David Cameron, ‘From central power to people power’ speech on 22 February 2010

Cameron can do this and is doing this because of the complete absence of accountability to the electorate. None of the talk of people power ever results in the political class handing back any of the power they have snatched.

The more that power is centralised the less democratic the country becomes. While Cameron talks a good game on people power, the core of his being is authoritarian and paternalist, always striving to marginalise the views of the very people he and his ilk are supposed to listen to and represent.  This has to stop.  Real change is required and the developing grassroots Harrogate Agenda campaign is working to achieve it.

BBC lied about ‘best scientific experts’ being used to construct its biased climate change coverage

In recent days this blog has focussed attention on the BBC’s policy of arbitrarily rejecting Freedom of Information requests.  The corporation has consistently cited a self interpreted catch-all derogation they say exempts them from releasing information, because all the information they have is held for the purposes of ‘journalism, art or literature.’

The focus on this stemmed from a failed attempt by Tony Newbery of the Harmless Sky blog, to get the list of names of attendees at a BBC seminar held in 2006, from which the BBC made the decision to give up any pretence of impartiality when covering climate change in news and current affairs output.  In a BBC Trust report on impartiality by film maker John Bridcut, the discussion at the 2006 seminar was referenced and was used by the BBC to declare that the man-made climate change argument was over.  It was happening and their coverage would reflect that.  In fact it would go further, as Bridcut revealed:

The BBC has held a high-level seminar with some of the best scientific experts, and has come to the view that the weight of evidence no longer justifies equal space being given to the opponents of the consensus [on anthropogenic climate change].

In light of such a seminal moment, the moment the BBC abandoned impartiality on a subject when even during World War II they refused to come down on support of one side, it would not be unreasonable to know who these ‘best scientific experts’ were.  They must have offered some solid, irrefutable evidence and cast iron argument to justify their stance that would see licence fee payers effectively funding biased coverage on the subject in contravention of the BBC Charter.

So it was Newbery asked the BBC to name the attendees of the seminar.  For years the BBC has doggedly refused to give up the information, hiding behind the infamous derogation they use to bat away any attempt for the licence fee paying public to find out how editorial policy has been formulated and decided.  It then spent a small fortune, of money collected via the licence fee, to fund a team of six expensive lawyers to fight to keep the details secret when Newbery dragged the matter before an information tribunal – which we referenced in a blog post here.

In a follow up blog post in which we considered the derogation, the fact it is only the BBC’s interpretation of the FOI Act exemption and that it should be challenged at a tribunal, we asked the obvious question: ‘So what exactly is the BBC hiding?’

Now we know.  Information uncovered in the last 24 hours by Maurizio Morabito of the Omnologos blog has confirmed that the BBC lied to Bridcut about the seminar being attended by ‘some of the best scientific experts’ which informed its decision to take one side in the climate change debate.  Maurizio later went on to explain why this is important.

Since Newbery’s original FOI request the BBC has conducted a systematic cover up to hide the fact its editorial policy was chosen by a range of 25 environmentalists, eco campaigners, a staffer from the US Embassy, students, someone from the Church of England, an insurance industry consultant, and even a representative from the CBI. In a previous blog post we mused:

The attendee lists and outputs of such sessions are not being held for the purposes of journalism, but rather as a validation of the partial worldview the BBC chooses to hold and propagate via its channels.

How absolutely prophetic this proved to be.  The BBC’s favourite activists were gathered together, all possessing an identical worldview and determined to deny those who challenge their claims the oxygen of publicity and an even playing field upon which to debate the issue.  The BBC knew what outcome it wanted and engineered it by listening only to those whose views would validate the prevailing worldview within the corporation.  It then hid behind the FOI derogation to stop the public finding out.  And we only have confirmation of this because Maurizio was smart enough to trawl the Waybackmachine to see if an entity had at some point published the attendee list that exposed the cynical deception.  Kudos!

Andrew Orlowski in The Register puts the attendee list in its proper context with, as he says, most…

… coming from industry, think tanks and NGOs. And as suspected, climate campaigners Greenpeace are present, while actual scientific experts are thin on the ground: not one attendee deals with attribution science, the physics of global warming. These are scarcely “some of the best scientific experts”, whose input could justify a historic abandonment of the BBC’s famous impartiality.

The BBC has lied.  It has hidden behind its questionable FOI derogation to maintain its lie.  That needs to be burned into the public’s collective consciousness. Those who did it need to be held to account and drummed out of the corporation.

However there is a bigger issue here and Orlowski for one is on the same page this blog has been on for a long time; namely that what needs to be tackled urgently is the BBC’s self interpreted FOI derogation.

We know it is completely unjustified, but now that knowledge is backed up with incontrovertible evidence of how the derogation, as the BBC keeps applying it, enables abuses such these to be perpetrated and covered up.  It is as many of us suspected.  The corporation is rotten to the core and the public has been disgracefully deceived on this issue and perhaps many others.  It is time for a light to be shone in those areas the BBC has, without justification, kept off limits to the people who fund the corporation.

If we want to hold the BBC to account we need to focus as one on challenging its FOI derogation and having it stripped away.  The message to the BBC should ring out loud and clear, tear down this wall.

Entwistle robs the public purse of £450,000 to fund comfortable lifestyle

It’s a point that has been made many times elsewhere, but one that has to keep being made because it keeps happening.  If I were to resign from my job my employer would process the paperwork and I would leave on an agreed date.  The same follows for all hardworking taxpayers.

So why is it George Entwistle is able to resign from his position as Director General of the BBC of his own accord after just 54 days in the job and get a pay off amounting to one year’s salary – £450,000?  The pay off amounts to £8,334 for each of the rudderless days he held the position.  In addition to this he also has a licence fee funded pension pot of £877,000.

I would ask is it not incredible that decision makers at entities like the BBC, local authorities and quangos feel perfectly at ease doling out our money like confetti in this way.  But it isn’t incredible, it’s nothing less than a scandal.  The total absence of accountability to the public – and the unique way the BBC is funded, no doubt – makes these kind of completely unjustifiable pay offs possible.  We little people are irrelevant and our dissent doesn’t matter.

That’s benevolent Auntie in action for you.  When not turning a blind eye and deaf ear to the rape and sexual assault of juvenile visitors to its studios by one of its star turns over the course of decades; when not peddling ‘progressive’ socialist propaganda as unbiased comment via its news and current affairs; the nation’s supposedly beloved broadcasting institution treats licence fee payers with undisguised contempt, looking after itself and the vested interests of its self selecting executives, who consider the public purse to be a personal piggy bank to fund astronomical salaries and pension pots the rest of us can only dream of.

Compare what the BBC has sanctioned for Entwistle today with their howls of moralising outrage over the bonuses for bankers and private company executives.  Apart from scale, where is the difference?

There is only one phrase to describe the BBC and its leadership, hypocritical thieving scum.

Held ‘for the purposes of journalism’

One need only see that expression and, if they have any scintilla of interest in Freedom of Information and accountability for the use of taxpayers’ money, they will know instantly this post is about the BBC and its blatant misuse of a clause in the Freedom of Information act as it relates to the corporation.

The BBC makes liberal use of FOI to demand information that it then uses to construct news stories and editorial pieces.  Yet when the BBC receives FOI requests that enquire about how it has determined its editorial stance on any number of issues and from where it took advice to inform that stance, the slams the door shut and the very people forced to pay to fund the BBC are treated with contempt and told to piss off.

The government has been complicit in this evasion, protecting the BBC as part of the establishment.  So when the BBC is challenged and taken to an information tribunal, the establishment sees to it the tribunal outcome is determined by ‘reliable’ placemen with an in-built bias against freedom of information and personal enmity to the worldview of the claimant.  The BBC spends huge sums of our money to defend such actions and keep the information concealed from us, then continues about its propagandist mission while funding it with yet more our money.

It is high time people removed their rose tinted glasses and set aside the carefully constructed and insiduous ‘Auntie’ narrative and demanded this publicly funded organisation be held to account.  It thrives with public money but wants to be treated as a private organisation and a special case.  It has to end.

Having a clause that permits the BBC to decline FOI requests ‘for the purposes of journalism’ is perfectly rational and appropriate, if it conceals whistleblowers and details of human sources of news material – or who provide assistance to reporters on dangerous assignment – who might lose their jobs through retaliation or be targeted by vengeful individuals or regimes seeking violent retribution.  No reasonable person would question that.

But concealing the names and credentials of so called ‘experts’ (many of whom it appears are no more than activits and lobbyists) who are gathered to inform the editorial position of the BBC, secreting away reports into the BBC’s coverage on important issues and fighting court actions to keep them secret, and refusing to release details of viewer/listener feedback/complaints about slanted coverage is a wilful and unacceptable misuse of the clause.

It is time for the FOI Act, as it relates to the BBC, to be strictly redefined to ensure the corporation is forced to be properly accountable to those who fund it.  It is plain wrong that the BBC can, if it chooses (and as many suspect) fill a room with partial and likeminded people and use them to influence news and current affairs output while hiding their identities and agendas from us so we cannot question their involvement or suitability.  The attendee lists and outputs of such sessions are not being held for the purposes of journalism, but rather as a validation of the partial worldview the BBC chooses to hold and propagate via its channels.  The FOI should not and must not apply in such cases.

The assault on free speech and wilful media ignorance

It’s fair to say I am not John Kampfner’s biggest fan.  But despite his observations of free speech being presented through the prism of media self interest, this piece he had in the Barclay Brother Beano on Thursday; ‘The global war on free speech’ makes some very good points that all readers would do well to absorb:

… We need anti-terrorism measures, but not the outrageous Communications Data Bill currently being discussed in Parliament, that would give not just the security services but dozens of lesser public bodies the right to demand emails and social media traffic from any citizen in the land.

… We need libel laws, but not those that for years have indulged sheikhs, oligarchs and other super-rich figures, preventing anyone from writing about them.

… Everywhere around the world, it seems, the right to take offence has been elevated into a human right. Usually, but not always, this “right” is exercised through religious belief. Most cases are seen through the prism of “insults” to Islam. But this “right” now seems to be exercised by whoever wants it.

… Whose interests are served when local councils know that planning decisions and other dodgy dealings will go unreported? The same goes on a national scale, not just about politicians, but sports stars and their agents and businesses on the take. Investigative journalism takes time, requires patience and indulgence from editors, and costs money. That is the area that is being cut back most of all – to everyone’s detriment.

… But I have worked in many countries – not just under authoritarian regimes – where journalists are seduced by the offer of a seat at the top table, or are persuaded not to ask that extra question. “Go easy, we don’t want trouble” could all too easily become the mantra here.

However this necessarily takes us off at an important tangent.  From a blogger’s perspective, why should it matter than any of Kampfner’s points are presented as media centric matters?  Because it should be recognised that some bloggers/citizen journalists are already adding value in this area by shining a light on instances of misbehaviour and dodgy dealings that were previously the preserve of investigative reporters.

When the likes of Kampfner readily accept journalists are manipulated and effectively bribed and show deference to those with ‘prestige’, it should be a warning sign that government ministers are only interested in working with journalists on matters of openness and transparency, as evidenced by this tweet from the Cabinet Office on 17 October, quoting Francis Maude:

The glorious media is playing right into the government’s hands and is in lockstep when it comes to excluding ‘the people’ – the ordinary man in the street.  But for the sneering journalistic condescension directed at bloggers by the self professed media elite, more examples of these type of stories published on blogs could be brought to a national audience by the legion of lavishly remunerated hacks. However, instead of the media working with bloggers they see them as little people, the great unwashed, whose stories are unworthy of exposure, so only a comparatively small number of people get to find out about them.

If the likes of John Kampfner genuinely want to champion free speech and bring attention to the murky activities of the powerful and the rich, locally or nationally, they could make an immediate difference by giving up their delusions of prestige and ending their policy of deliberately ignoring stories that common or garden bloggers uncover and publish.  Not for nothing do we assert the media is not an ally, but a fully assimilated part of the establishment.

BBC’s vile inner core revealed again

There have been few sights on television more gut churning. Namely witnessing an entity that has been exposed for putting its own interests before the truth and the interests of victims whose abuse it helped facilitate. But that is the BBC for you.

During last week’s Panorama programme it was bewildering to see BBC fans flocking to Twitter to proclaim we were seeing the best of the BBC, exposing its own failings albeit those of a different editorial team working for a separate programme. Stepping into the Twitter wankfest I offered snippets of my view that this was in fact the BBC at its insipid worst; engaging in a desperate action to bleach itself before a voyeuristic audience so that it could declare its virtue and claim it remains trustworthy.

Suffice to say not all of the Twitterati were accommodating of my view and were, shall we say, dismissive. However later in the week the BBC’s Director General, Incurious George, confirmed my assessment and laid bare the true motivation of the corporation’s embrace of the Panorama programme, as outlined in a report on the BBC:

He [Incurious George Entwistle] added that the Panorama programme pointed to the BBC’s health as a media organisation, rather than being a “symptom of chaos”, because it showed the organisation’s capacity to investigate itself.

He said no other news organisation in the world would do this.

Later Mr Entwistle emailed BBC staff to pledge the corporation was “determined to be open and transparent, however painful it may feel at times”

He added: “It is only by opening ourselves up that we can restore and maintain the trust of our audiences.”

The evidence is clear. Panorama was all about serving the BBC’s interests, and the alleged victims of Jimmy Savile were simply pawns in an attempt by the corporation to paint itself as something it is demonstrably not – open, transparent and honest.

This behaviour was not the BBC at its best, nowhere close. Rather it was the BBC at its back-covering, spite-ridden and contempt-filled worst. What follows on from this, the British establishment pretending to take the BBC to task while doing all in its power to protect and shield it, will be even worse.

How the Nobel Peace Prize was stolen by EU’s colleague

For a construct that has stolen power from 27 countries, a mere matter of stealing a Nobel Peace Prize is a very minor affair.

So writes friend of this blog, Richard North on EU Referendum.  For in looking closer at the events surrounding the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to the EU, it is now coming to light that underhand methods were used by the prize committee chairman, Thorbjørn Jagland, to force through the EU as the recipient of the award.  Jagland, as we explained previously, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe – and a fully committed and paid member of the cabal whose aim is to ensure EU governance over Europe.

The totally impartial and completely agenda-free Chairman of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee who decided the EU should win the 2012 prize

Jagland, it transpires, called the committee to vote on the award only when one of its members who was firmly against such an idea – Ågot Valle, former deputy leader of the “No to EU” campaign – was on sick leave.  The rationale being the committee is supposed to make every effort to achieve unanimity so as to avoid controversy.

Previous attempts to deliver this award to the EU have failed despite repeated nominations by the EUphiles, who were desperate to have some form of endorsement of their uttlery misleading rewrite of historical fact that the EU was responsible for peace and democracy across Europe since World War II.  There is no irony in the fact the EU could only have the award delivered by their ‘colleague’ by way of the kind of anti-democratic and underhand manoeuverings which characterises the construct.  North goes on to put further context around the background to this award:

Thus in a country where 80 percent of ordinary people are against the EU, we find a committee where everybody is in favour of the EU.

If ever there was anything that typified the chasm of a disconnect between the establishment and the people, and the depth of the contempt shown for the people, this is it.  Unsurprising therefore that the overwhelming reaction to this self-given award has been scorn, mockery and anger.  This has resulted in a ‘shitstorm’ that has EU cheerleaders desperately lashing out and in pathetic pre-pubescent rage describing the EU as ‘Europe’ to suggest opposition to the stateless supreme government is opposition to a whole continent.

Nobel Peace Prize: Union européenne, douze points

Following the ludicrous decisions in 2007 to award the Nobel Peace Prize to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and in 2009 to Barack Obama only two weeks after taking office and while he conducted a war, many people may have started to feel the awards had been undermined by overt politicisation.

If anyone still harboured any doubts about the Nobel Prize having been made worthless by those awards, then the news today that the European Union has won the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize for having “contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe” should leave them in no doubt.

Like the Eurovision Song Contest, the Nobel Peace Prize has descended into farce. Something serious and meaningful has been corrupted by a desire to force political agendas into the faces of the population. No doubt the BBC will report this in glowing terms, as one would expect from an organisation that enjoys large amounts of our money channelled to it from the EU.

The Nobel Prize is of the elite’s most highly favoured, for the elite’s most highy favoured… pals in the establishment network conferring awards and plaudits on each other.

If you doubt that, perhaps it is worth noting Thorbjørn Jagland, head of the Nobel Peace Prize committee, is also Secretary General of the Council of Europe, with its stated aims ‘To achieve greater unity between its members for the purpose of safeguarding and realising the ideals and principles which are their common heritage and facilitating their economic and social progress.’ Clearly no conflict of interest there.

It is time people started treating the award with the same contempt its committee shows for reality. Richard North at EU Referendum is already doing that, being similarly dismissive of the news.

Democracy and politics, Stoke-on-Trent style

If one wants yet another small but significant piece of evidence demonstrating that we don’t live in a democracy and the political process is an utter failure, look no further than a story from early last week from Stoke-on-Trent.

For it is there, as The Sentinel reports, that council officers are running out of control and operating in defiance of the law.

More than £118,000 has been spent on a survey to review how much repair work is needed on the city’s council houses – but tenants and councillors are not allowed to see the results.

Not just tenants, but their supposed representatives who were elected (albeit by a small minority of voters) to make decisions and direct governance in the city.  The refusal was of a Freedom of Information request for which there is no legal basis at the local authority for rejection.  Taxpayers’ money has been taken (from national and local level) and spent to garner information, but no one can see the results collected by the authority’s Officers.  Well actually, as the story goes on to qualify, councillors can see the information but only after Officers have ‘briefed’ them – presumably to tell them what they must not say in public.  But ‘information control officers’ say releasing the results would cause:

… an increase in customer enquiries relating to when improvements will be carried out.

Prior to publishing the stock condition survey it will be necessary to properly brief frontline staff, elected members and other stakeholders.

Information control?  How apt a description.  Heaven forbid that the public, the majority of whom pay their taxes to fund essentials such as housing repairs to council stock, should deign to ask about the findings or draw upon the very services that they are entitled to receive.  There can be no more clear example of the inversion of the positions of servant and master.

Since then, to compound the sense of incompetence that seems to permeate the city’s halls of ‘power’, Stoke-on-Trent City Council has gone on to write off £7.5m of unpaid council tax in addition to £8.1m already wiped off the books.  Out of control and above the law, councils are gouging the wallets and purses of taxpayers with the usual raft of charges and fees in addition to the annual charge – to fund non essential boondoggles rather than essential services only – which is undoubtedly fuelling resentment at the ever rising level of council tax and avoidance of its payment.

There is a perfect storm brewing caused by the failure of politics and absence of democracy.  An alternative, positive vision is required and thankfully a group of people are developing one known as the Harrogate Agenda,  but some residents are failing to grasp this and rather than demanding the council limit its scope and activities to essential services, instead are calling for it do more to chase down non-payers, and even call in bailiffs with their often illegal and intimidating tactics, to recover unpaid council tax.

Perhaps those who thought Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s ‘corporate logo’ was meaningless were being somewhat unfair.  The image, with its ever decreasing circles sinking lower and lower while fading away, seems somehow rather prescient.  Perhaps it was designed that way intentionally as a metaphor for the continuing erosion of illusory people power and democratic control.

Tory Party faced with new rift as MPs prepare to mount coup

So reads a headline in the Independent.  But this isn’t another instalment in the recent string of stories planted in the media to convince voters that backbench Tory MPs will rein in David Cameron and protect the right flank of the party from UKIP.

No, this story is different from the fayre trotted out in the pages of the Failygraph as it marks the increasing confidence of the Cameroons and a concerted effort they have undertaken to eject members of the so called ‘awkward squad’ from official positions on the executive of the backbench 1922 Committee.  And it will come as no surprise to regular readers that at the heart of this operation to protect the ‘instinctively Eurosceptic’ Cameron is supposed critic and prominent Judas goat, George EUstice – his former press secretary.

Cameron, with an ever watchful eye focused on crushing any dissent of his autocratic control of the party, has seen to it that parliamentary private secretaries – MPs who are ministerial aides and therefore are expected to toe the leadership’s line – are now able to vote in the election. This means the backbench group, which is supposed to hold the leadership (and by definition any Conservative government) to account could now have its executive and direction influenced by the leadership.  It is the political equivalent of castration – or at least it would be if there were any more than a tiny handful of Tory MPs with balls.

It is classic Cameron.  If anyone opposes his direction he changes the rules enabling his minions to be dispatched to initiate a hostile takeover.  They keep the opponents’ organisation structures intact and wear their clothes, but change the language and corrupt definitions to mean the opposite of what they did.  He has already done this by adopting the mantle of Eurosceptic despite his words and actions being entirely Europhile.

If successful, this putsch against the 1922 will still see the committee describing itself as holding Cameron to account and putting pressure on him to be ‘more conservative’, yet it will be entirely supportive of Cameron’s actions and utter all the sycophantic words of endorsement he wants to hear.  And no doubt the Failygraph will continue to publish op-eds from various talking heads earnestly telling readers that Cameron will soon show his conservative credentials, that there is real pressure for change inside the party which will win the day and there’s no need to support UKIP.

Only a simpleton could believe it.

Met Office 1 Public Purse 0

And so, one year after MPs doggedly refused to examine the evidence of Met Office lies and deceptions, a group of them have determined that supercomputers are required because they want the Met Office to produce seasonal forecasts but be clearer about the chances of getting them wrong.

The long running saga of Met Office distortions, whitewashes and cover ups covered on this blog last winter started as a result of Julia Slingo bleating about the need for yet more public money to ramp up Met Office supercomputing power.  Thanks to the Parliamentary equivalent of the three wise monkeys, we have come full circle and her wish is almost certain to be granted.

Ignorant of the fact the Met Office does create seasonal forecasts (click on ‘lies’ link above for documentary evidence) and only renamed them and changed their location because of their poor accuracy, and ignorant of the fact that all the supercomputing power in the world is useless if the models used are populated with assumptions and biases that do not reflect the reality of natural and chaotic climate system, the politicians are readying themselves to hand over millions of pounds more of our money on a whim.

We know why it is happening, and that it suits corporate interests but that doesn’t make it acceptable.  Not one MP (and I engaged with a number of them at the height of the Met Office winter forecast scandal and provided them with evidence of Met Office lies to parliament and the public) has stood up for truth and probity, or defended the interests of the public.

When our elected representatives continue to set aside the facts and ignore reality there is no hope that we can prevent this raid on the public purse.  We can confidently forecast one thing, even with the new supercomputing power we will not see any improvement in Met Office predictions.  Their determination to push the AGW narrative and the man-made CO2 scapegoat means their models are biased towards rapidly increasing temperatures.  It’s why they got forecasts badly wrong before and why they will continue to do so.  At our expense.  Nothing has changed.

Poisoning the well

When looking at conflicts throughout history you can see a pattern of behaviour that was common to retreating armies.

They would burn anything of use, partly to deny anything of use to their enemy and partly to punish those who watched them flee in ignoble fashion.  They would also, as a matter of course, throw dead bodies and waste matter into the water supply to deny those who are chasing them away access to that which is essential for survival.  It is known as poisoning the well.

With the increase in support for those who argue Britain should leave the EU, we are witnessing the Europlastics performing the political equivalent of poisoning the well as they retreat.  Instead of throwing dead bodies and filth into the well, they are throwing the toxic, fairytale ‘option’ of renegotiating the terms of EU membership into the debate to poison it. This is the way in which they will perpetrate their next great con on the British public, by persuading them to vote for an impossible option, thus ensuring that the debate is killed stone dead and Britain stays firmly inside the corrupt and anti democratic EU.

Renegotiation is not an option.  It is not permissible.  Its very presence in the debate is a deliberate and cynical deception.  It is the poison in the well.

The Europlastics and their useful idiots in the media are focusing all their energies and column inches on renegotiation being what the majority of voters really want, not withdrawal.  For the EEC referendum deception in 1975 read the national referendum on EU membership debate in 2011.  The public was conned about the EEC being nothing more than a free trade area then; the public is being conned that renegotiation of EU membership can be conducted now.

How many voters would say in polls that they want renegotiation if they understood that it is an impossibility?  Renegotiation is a myth and when viewed in its proper context it appears in lists such as this:

  • Father Christmas
  • Easter Bunny
  • Renegotiation of EU membership
  • The Tooth Fairy

Lies characterised the pro-EEC argument in 1975, and they resulted in the situation in which we find ourselves today.  Lies are characterising the renegotiation argument today, and if allowed to continue they will result in Britain being permanently bound as a province of the European Union.

It is time to defend the well and counter the Europlastic lies.


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