Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Barack Obama's decision to play golf on Memorial Day was disrespectful and hardly presidential

"Contrast this with President Obama’s decision to play golf yesterday, Memorial Day, for the 70th time during his 28-month long presidency. For tens of millions of Americans, Memorial Day is a time for remembrance of the huge sacrifices made by servicemen and women on the battlefield. The president did pay his respects in the morning, laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery, but later in the day traveled to Fort Belvoir to play golf. The story has not been reported so far in a single US newspaper, but was made public by veteran White House correspondent Keith Koffler on his blog. Here’s Koffler’s report:"

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Overseas aid: We borrow to give to the world

"It only takes us 22 days to borrow the £8.5bn we hand out so generously every year, says Christopher Booker. "

Councils spend £100m on taxpayer-funded credit cards

"Despite being ordered to cut spending by almost 30 per cent, town hall chiefs have continued to lavish hundreds of thousands of pounds on dinners at Michelin-starred restaurants, leisure trips and expensive gifts including iPads and video games while slashing jobs and scrapping front-line services.

An investigation by The Daily Telegraph has uncovered details of apparently questionable spending decisions by councillors and local government officials, with more than £2 million spent on travel over the last three years, including flights to Thailand, Kenya and Bermuda. "

Friday, 27 May 2011

Polish population in the UK soars from 75,000 to more than HALF A MILLION in eight years

Daily Mail
"The number of Polish people being born in the UK has increased from 75,000 to 521,000 in eight years.The seven-fold increase comes as it is revealed that one in five workers in low-skill jobs was born outside the UK. Poles make up the majority of people to have migrated to the UK since Poland and seven other Eastern European countries joined the EU in 2004."

Immigration is 'out of control', admits minister: Rising numbers dash Tory hopes of cuts

Daily Mail
"Immigration rose to near-record levels last year, official figures have revealed.Net migration increased at the fastest rate since Labour opened Britain’s doors to workers from the Eastern European states that joined the EU seven years ago.In the year up to September 2010, the figure for net migration – the difference between immigration and emigration – was 242,000, the third highest on record.Some 586,000 people arrived to live in Britain and 344,000 emigrated."

Monday, 23 May 2011

What happens when Greece defaults

"It is when, not if. Financial markets merely aren’t sure whether it’ll be tomorrow, a month’s time, a year’s time, or two years’ time (it won’t be longer than that). Given that the ECB has played the “final card” it employed to force a bailout upon the Irish – threatening to bankrupt the country’s banking sector – presumably we will now see either another Greek bailout or default within days.

What happens when Greece defaults. Here are a few things:

- Every bank in Greece will instantly go insolvent.

- The Greek government will nationalise every bank in Greece.

- The Greek government will forbid withdrawals from Greek banks.

- To prevent Greek depositors from rioting on the streets, Argentina-2002-style (when the Argentinian president had to flee by helicopter from the roof of the presidential palace to evade a mob of such depositors), the Greek government will declare a curfew, perhaps even general martial law.

- Greece will redenominate all its debts into “New Drachmas” or whatever it calls the new currency (this is a classic ploy of countries defaulting)

- The New Drachma will devalue by some 30-70 per cent (probably around 50 per cent, though perhaps more), effectively defaulting 0n 50 per cent or more of all Greek euro-denominated debts......"

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Oops! Maybe I WAS driving after all: New pressure on Minister over speeding row as he admits he 'can't remember' where he was on day of offence

Daily Mail
"Pressure on Chris Huhne over the ‘penalty points affair’ intensified today after he admitted that he 'may have' been driving his car at the time.Mr Huhne is expected to tell police this week that he 'cannot be sure' he wasn't behind the wheel when the vehicle was caught speeding in Essex in 2003.His spokesman said: 'Basically, he can't say he definitely wasn't driving. He doesn't remember what he did that day. He hasn't got a diary about whether he drove or not.'

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Cameron should scrap the Foreign Aid budget, not increase it

"The biggest recipient of our foreign aid largesse is currently Pakistan to which over the next four years we will be sending a total of £1.4 billion. This is roughly the same amount that Pakistan has earmarked to spend on a new fleet of Chinese made submarines; these will go nicely with the two squadrons of Chinese J-10 fighters which Pakistan has also bought at a cost of $1.4 billion. So, in effect, our foreign aid donations are helping to underwrite the military expansion of the country which until recently was shielding the world’s number one Islamist terrorist, organised the massacre in Bombay and is doing so much to fund the Taliban insurgency killing and maiming our forces in Afghanistan."

The £800,000 benefit cheats: Gypsy swindlers flew into Britain from Romania just to pick up their cheques

Daily Mail
"A family of professional benefit cheats who made regular flights into Britain to collect state handouts was jailed yesterday.The Romany gypsy gang – also suspected to have been involved in a child-trafficking ring – swindled taxpayers out of more than £800,000 in a ‘flagrant and persistent’ attack on the benefits system.Some members were based in Britain while others flew in from Romania to collect tax credits, income support, child benefits and housing benefit."

Monday, 16 May 2011

Chris Huhne's implosion is an immediate boost to Nick Clegg

"Chris Huhne’s slow implosion has immediate consequences. The first is that it immeasurably strengthens Nick Clegg. Mr Huhne posed the biggest threat to Mr Clegg’s leadership, having run him a close second in the race to succeed Ming Campbell. He had been displaying his potential for trouble by playing to the Lib Dem rank and file with attacks on the Tories and his ill-judged sally against David Cameron in Cabinet. By the end of last week however the view in No 10 was that he had overreached himself. The Lib Dem leader was beginning to feel better after a tough 10 days. His situation was looking better than many expected. Now that, as we confirm today, it turns out that the person Mr Huhne allegedly asked to take his penalty points was indeed Vicky Pryce, his situation is perilous."

Chris Huhne: No way to treat a lady

"Chris Huhne, the Energy Secretary, will today outline the Government’s targets for reducing carbon emissions, the most ambitious – some say reckless – in the world. But Mr Huhne has more on his plate. Did he, as his wife apparently alleges, ask her to accept a speeding penalty on her driving licence on his behalf? Mr Huhne, who left Vicky Pryce for another woman, says this version of events is “simply incorrect”. He is, in other words, calling his estranged wife a liar. Yet to admit she is telling the truth is to confess to a criminal act. It could be argued that if Mr Huhne is in the right then he is entitled to save his own political skin by accusing the woman he abandoned of lying. But it still looks pretty caddish. It is worse if he is in the wrong and knows it – but thinks it can’t be proved. Either way, a thorough police investigation is required. "

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Huhne's damning phonecall: Police to investigate claims Cabinet Minister 'tried to dodge speeding points'

Daily Mail
*Climate Change Secretary accused of cover-up
*Lying to police could lead to a jail term for 56-year-old
*'He does drive a bit like a maniac,' admits ex-wife
*Tip-off came from source close to bisexual lover

"Sensational details of a phone call Climate Change Secretary Mr Huhne made to the person he allegedly persuaded to take his speeding points were today revealed.The phone call, which is corroborated by taped evidence, flies in the face of the Liberal Democrat MP's repeated public denials of the allegations.It suggests that in private he is involved in a desperate attempt to cover up the truth to save his political career.In the phone call, which took place in recent weeks before The Mail on Sunday revealed the allegation last week, Mr Huhne warned the person who took the penalty points not to let 'the genie' out of the bottle by revealing what really happened.

He says: 'There is no evidence for this story unless you give it some legs by saying something.

'The last thing you want is a half-baked story saying you've taken points for me.'

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Obama shoots Osama, and then his own foot

Andrew Bolt,Herald Sun (Australia)
"FOR a second I thought I’d misread President Barack Obama. What guts, after all. What a leader.Against type, the Nobel Peace Prize winner sent four helicopters of troops into Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden.What’s more, his hit squad did the job right under the nose of an army that was surely protecting the al-Qaida boss.But then, Obama’s greatest victory turned into a farce, thanks to all the President’s familiar traits of ineptitude, regal disdain and fuzzy Leftism.....Worse followed fast.On Monday, the President’s counter-terrorism adviser, John Brennan, made these claims: “Osama was engaged in a firefight” and was found “hiding behind women”. A woman he hid behind was said to have been shot dead.White House spokesman Jay Carney then added the soldiers who shot bin Laden “were met with a great deal of resistance” from “many other people who were armed”.

Uh-oh. In fact, every one of those claims is false. Bin Laden was unarmed. Just one of the five men killed that night had a gun, and he was shot early. Bin Laden did not hide behind any woman, none of whom were killed.I have close to zero doubt that the US got its man. But somehow Obama’s “trust me” reassurance sounds very hollow.The bumbler is back, and now we really do need those pictures.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

A resounding No to backroom politics

Daily Mail
"Truly, this was a resounding vote of no confidence in his ‘new politics’ of backroom deals between parties. There’s precious little comfort, either, for Ed Miliband. Humiliated in the referendum, he knows Labour’s gains in England and Wales owe everything to the Lib Dem collapse — and nothing to his lacklustre leadership.But it’s his party’s hammering in its Scottish heartlands that will worry him most. For unless he can recover support there, his chances of forming a government will be nil."

Friday, 6 May 2011


"Athens Mulls Plans for New Currency
Greece Considers Exit from Euro Zone

By Christian Reiermann

The debt crisis in Greece has taken on a dramatic new twist. Sources with information about the government’s actions have informed SPIEGEL ONLINE that Athens is considering withdrawing from the euro zone. The common currency area’s finance ministers and representatives of the European Commission are holding a secret crisis meeting in Luxembourg on Friday night.
......At best we can have Germany supporting the PIIGS in a lavish lifestyle based on a hope of someday being repaid. At worst we can have a decision for the Euro to join the devaluation parade as a way to make life easier for the PIIGS. In between would be a German Popular Revolt (as they don’t get much out of this in either case).

Then there is always the possibility of the whole EU / Euro Zone doing a ‘rapid self disassembly’…

Now THAT would be fun to watch! ;-)"

Where did it all go wrong for Labour in Scotland?

New Statesman
"Labour's attempt to turn the election into a referendum on the coalition was a disaster. ...So, where did it all go wrong for Labour? As recently as March the party enjoyed a double-digit lead in the polls. What's now clear is that their attempt to turn the election into a referendum on the Westminster coalition was a disastrous misjudgement. "

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

A WikiLeaks Gitmo File Contained a Clue to Bin Laden's Hideout

the atlantic wire
"If Osama bin Laden had carefully read the latest release of U.S. government documents by WikiLeaks, he could've seen that the U.S. was on to his whereabouts in Abbottabad, Pakistan. That's the stunning takeaway from the trove of classified government documents leaked just days before President Obama authorized the helicopter raid that led to the Al-Qaeda leader's death."