Monday, 27 June 2011

Our carbon dioxide tax will be “economic disarmament”

Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun (Australia)

But China is making sure our coal will always be around for China to use, instead:

THE Gillard government is investigating potential loopholes in foreign investment regulations after it was revealed a Chinese mining giant spent $213 million buying 43 farms for coal exploration in the NSW Northern Tablelands.

Can’t Labor and the Greens see how incredibly stupid they are being? Can’t they read the lessons of these purchases? We’re cutting our own puny emissions by taxing our own use of coal in the vain belief that China will follow our lead. But China is buying more coal deposits precisely because sees its future as dependent on burning a lot more coal.

Compute, people. Compute.

Holland kills the multiculturalism that is killing it

Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun (Australia)
"The new integration policy will place more demands on immigrants. For example, immigrants will be required to learn the Dutch language, and the government will take a tougher approach to immigrants to ignore Dutch values or disobey Dutch law.

The government will also stop offering special subsidies for Muslim immigrants because, according to Donner, “it is not the government’s job to integrate immigrants.” The government will introduce new legislation that outlaws forced marriages and will also impose tougher measures against Muslim immigrants who lower their chances of employment by the way they dress. More specifically, the government will impose a ban on face-covering Islamic burqas as of January 1, 2013."

Saturday, 25 June 2011

The Big Fat Greek Gravy Train: A special investigation into the EU-funded culture of greed, tax evasion and scandalous waste

Daily Mail
"Here, in the suburb of Kifissia, amid clean, tree-lined streets full of designer boutiques and car showrooms selling luxury marques such as Porsche and Ferrari, live some of the richest men and women in the world. With its streets paved with marble, and dotted with charming parks and cafes, this suburb is home to shipping tycoons such as Spiros Latsis, a billionaire and friend of Prince Charles, as well as countless other wealthy industrialists and politicians. One of the reasons they are so rich is that rather than paying millions in tax to the Greek state, as they rightfully should, many of these residents are living entirely tax-free. Along street after street of opulent mansions and villas, surrounded by high walls and with their own pools, most of the millionaires living here are, officially, virtually paupers."

How so? Simple: they are allowed to state their own earnings for tax purposes, figures which are rarely challenged. And rich Greeks take full advantage.

Ed Balls Take Note, Obama’s Keynesian Stimulus Has Failed

Guido Fawkes
"Obama did implement a massive $787 billion stimulus programme financed by more borrowing of the kind that Will Straw and Ed Balls still advocate. The chart above shows the results versus the predictions. Unemployment is far higher than the supporters of the “porkulus” projected, higher even than they projected it would be without wasting three-quarters of a trillion dollars. Not since the 1930s has US unemployment been so high for so long."

Where Greece goes now, we will soon follow

Christopher Booker, Telegraph
"Far more than most people realise, we in Britain are approaching a financial abyss almost as great as that into which Greece has been falling. Last week, the deficit on our Government's annual spending widened yet again, to £143 billion, which means that we are having to borrow nearly £3 billion a week. That equates to £5,700 a year for every household.

The BBC continues to prattle on about those terrible "cuts", as various groups of public sector workers plan the widest series of strikes we have seen since the 1970s. But when did you last hear the BBC tell us that our overall public spending is rising, not falling? When did the Today programme tell us that by the end of the year, our national debt will have soared to £1 trillion, having doubled in six years? "

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Quantitative easing back on Bank of England's agenda

"...Most MPC members feared that "the current weakness of demand growth was likely to persist for longer than previously thought", noting "the fiscal challenges in the euro-area periphery highlighted the potential for further adverse shocks to demand".

As a policy, QE is designed to combat a demand slump.

However, Simon Ward, Henderson's chief economist, described the prospect of more inflation-boosting QE as "dangerous".

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Public opinion on international aid isn't where Cameron thinks it is

"The policy is by no means a Cameroon brainchild. In 1970 the United Nations set the target for government aid at 0.7 per cent of GNI; in 2004 the Labour government pledged to meet it by 2013 and in 2006 David Cameron signed the Tories up to that pledge. It was a key part of the wristbands and huskies "detoxification" of the ‘nasty party’. Unfortunately for Cameron, he seems to have misjudged public sentiment on this issue. Only 7 per cent say the decision to increase the aid budget makes them more favouable towards the Conservatives, while 37 per cent say it makes them less favourable. "

Pimco warns Greece will default

"Pimco, the world's biggest bond fund, shrugged off last night's vote of confidence in the Greek government warning that it expects Greece and other European economies to default on their debts to resolve their problems. ....California-based Pimco (Pacific Investment Management Company), is based in California and is the world's biggest bond fund manager with nearly $1.3 trillion in assets under management. "

Greek crisis could cost UK £336bn: British exposure 'significantly underestimated'

Daily Mail
"Britain could be hit with losses of up to £366billion from the collapse of the Greek economy, it has emerged.The warnings came as the Greek government last night won a vote of confidence in the Athens Parliament, clearing the way for a second bailout to go ahead. The crunch will come next week when the Greeks vote on a £25billion austerity package demanded by the EU before they hand over any more cash.The potential devastation of banks and other City institutions would be equal to 24 per cent of our annual national output, or £14,640 for every family in the UK."

Billions in overseas aid 'puts people off giving cash to charity'

Daily Mail
"Along with the NHS budget, international aid is the one part of government spending that is not facing cuts. It is set to double to £12billion a year by 2015. But the public overwhelmingly believes aid money discourages foreign governments from spending their own money, props up bad regimes and is ‘spent on projects that don’t deserve funding’.By a margin of 69 per cent to 7 per cent, voters agree that aid money ‘fails to reach ordinary people in the developed world and is wasted by corrupt governments’.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Treasury plans for Greece to go bust

"Treasury ministers have admitted that the Government is drawing up contingency plans for a Greek bankruptcy after being warned by a former foreign secretary that the euro “cannot last”.

Fitch warns any Greek debt rollover would be treated as a default

"Any voluntary rollover of Greek debt would be treated as a default, Fitch Ratings has warned, mounting pressure on European policymakers hours before Greece's Prime Minister faced a confidence vote. .....Euro zone ministers said they were also ready to put together a second loan package for Greece of around €120bn, to support the country longer term. "

Eurocrats: The Guilty Men

Guido Fawkes
""The eurosceptic right could not have been more vindicated by the mess in Greece. As another twelve billion Euros looks set to be poured down the drain, finally the consensus is coming round to what those of us in the anti-Euro-brigade have been predicting for two decades. ......These “statesmen” made a catastrophic error of judgement on a scale which had they been successful in dragging the UK into the euro would have seen us suffer even more since 2008 as well as lose our monetary sovereignty. It is noticeable that many of these same statesman now tell us messianically that global warming is a fact, not a theory, and want to commit us to destroying our economic competitiveness. If at first you don’t succeed… "

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Forget 1926, this is more like a Scargill moment

Daily Mail Comment
"One of the main reasons for this country's economic plight is New Labour's decision to expand the public sector to a level unprecedented in peacetime.They left the country with large numbers of people employed in positions with little or no economic or social value, often paid very generously, and in almost all cases entitled to good pensions.The public sector is also the last stronghold of trade union membership. Britain's unions are now wholly dominated by public employees.his has created a perverse economic effect. When the recession swept through the advanced world, Britain's lean and realistic private sector responded almost instantly by making painful but necessary cuts in its workforce.It also froze pay and reluctantly accepted that pension schemes, where they existed, would have to be scaled back.The public sector did much less to tighten its belt, assuming that taxpayers – mainly in the private sector – would absorb its costs as before. So business must still endure heavy taxes to pay for those costs, slowing the recovery we so badly need.Now the unions are threatening us with a new wave of strikes, grandiosely conjuring up the spectre of the General Strike of 1926.

The comparison is ridiculous. A series of rolling nuisance stoppages cannot be equated with the titanic, principled confrontation of that era, or even with the famous ‘Winter of Discontent' of 1978-79.It could truly be said of today's union leaders that they are willing to wound but afraid to strike. In any case, the living standards of today's union members would have been beyond the wildest imaginings of Twenties coalminers.The truth is that the old union movement achieved most of its aims long ago, and continues to exist largely to keep its officials in employment, and the Labour Party in funds.

There is no doubt that many public-sector workers are necessary and respected, but that does not mean they can be, or should be, immune from an economic downturn which necessarily affects everybody.The TUC should beware. Its planned disruption will be deeply disliked by millions in the real world who resent the feather-bedding and security of the public sector. It is hard to see how it can succeed.And assuming the Government can remember where it has put its backbone, this confrontation will give Ministers a chance to be both tough and popular.This could be the most unwise strike call since Arthur Scargill's suicidal 1984 coal stoppage."

Friday, 17 June 2011

Bailing out the IMF

john redwood
"I have two main worries with this proposal. The first is I object very strongly to the IMF becoming the cash machine of last resort for the failing Euro. We could easily lose substantial sums through this activity. The IMF has been lending to Euro countries at a little over 5% when the market says they should be paying twice that. Many in the markets think Greece will have to renege on its debts one way or another.

The second is, this is not a good time to ask us for more money. The UK government is rightly fighting the battle of the bulge on its own borrowing habits. Having to borrow more to lend to ailing Euroland economies through the IMF is not helpful to the UK programme of debt and risk reduction in the national accounts

Let Greece default on its debts, demand top Tories as EU bailout set to hit £1trillion

Daily Mail
"Ministers were last night urged to allow Greece to default on its debts – amid warnings the cost of EU bailouts could soar to more than £1trillion.European stock markets tumbled in the wake of violent protests in Athens and growing speculation that Greece will default on its crippling debts despite last year’s £100billion bailout.Financial experts warned Europe was facing a ‘Lehman moment’ – a reference to the collapse of the giant investment bank which plunged the world into recession. ......Neil Mackinnon, an economist at VTB Capital in London and a former Treasury official, said: ‘The probability of a Eurozone Lehman moment is increasing.

The markets have moved from simply pricing in a high probability of a Greek debt default to looking at a scenario of it becoming disorderly and of contagion spreading to other economies like Portugal, like Ireland, and maybe Spain, Italy and Belgium.’

A crisis that could tear Europe apart

Daily Mail
"Just imagine living in a Britain in which the state had broken down completely. You would see mobs rampaging through the streets and fires burning in the capital city. You would see governments rise and fall; you would see taxes rise and social services cut. You would see faceless European bankers flying in to take over Britain’s economy, and you would see thousands of people take to the barricades, blazing with outrage at their betrayal by the political classes.This may sound like the stuff of science fiction. But it is precisely what is happening right now in Greece, at the epicentre of what may prove to be one of the most terrifying political and economic crises in our lifetimes."

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Euro bailouts drive up our IMF subscription costs by £9.2 Billion

Douglas Carswell
"It's only a contingent liability" they told us. "Bailing out the Eurozone won't cost us real money that might otherwise fund public services."

Oh yes? Then why is the UK having to almost double our IMF subscription from £10.5 Billion to £19.7 Billion?

Yesterday's draft Statutory Instrument on our International Monetary Fund (Increase in Subscription) proposes we stump up "a further subscription of 9,416,600,000 special drawing rights". Published quietly in the House of Commons, it can't hide the fact that that means an increase of £9.2 Billion in real money*.

Remember that next time local services are cut where you live. Think of the tax cuts we could afford with that £9.2 Billion? Or, if you prefer, of the guarantees we could give to maintain public services?

Instead that large chunk of taxpayers' wealth is going to be used to prop up the Eurozone. Is this what the IMF is for?

We borrow money we don't have, to pay vast subs to an organisation not designed to prop up the Eurozone, in order to keep together a monetary union we chose not to join. Who is in charge?

* - value calculated at SDR (Special Drawing Right) conversion rate of SDR1 = £0.98"

UK Quietly Contributes £9 Billion to IMF Euro-Bailouts Equivalent to Adding 1½p to Basic Rate of Income Tax

Guido Fawkes
"Douglas Carswell has spotted a Statutory Instrument slipped in before parliament without prior debate, two pages of legislation which will cost the British taxpayer £9 billion, the equivalent of adding some 1½p to the basic rate of income tax. No debate, no big announcement, just another day of propping up the Eurozone on the backs of UK taxpayers."

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

2,500 illegal immigrants a week from North Africa flooding into Europe through Italy

Daily Mail
"As many as 2,500 illegal immigrants a week are flooding into the continent from North Africa through Italy, the European Union's border protection agency has revealed.The official figures, which came from Warsaw based Frontex, show that for the first three months of this year 33,000 people entered Europe illegally with 22,600 coming through Italy.Most of those were economic migrants from Tunisia and sub-Sahran Africa who had fled countries that had been hit by popular uprisings in what was dubbed the Arab Spring"

Inflation remains double Bank of England's target as food and energy costs spiral

Daily Mail
"The Office for National Statistics data shows the consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation for May was held at 4.5 per cent - its highest level for more than two years."

Sunday, 12 June 2011

UK aid cash helped African dictator buy himself a £30m jet

Daily Mail
"British aid money was used by an African dictator to buy a £30million jet, it emerged last night. Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni bought the top-of-the-range Gulfstream G550 private plane in the same year ministers gave his poverty- ravaged country £70million. During the same period Uganda also received around £57million from the UK through the European Union.The autocratic 67-year-old leader – currently facing criticism for launching a violent crackdown against protesters demanding an Egyptian-style uprising – received the cash under the Labour government in 2008-09."

102 foreign criminals we can't deport... because of THEIR 'right to a family life'

Daily Mail
"Over 100 foreign criminals and illegal immigrants have used the European 'right to a family life' to avoid deportation from the UK in the past year.Article Eight of the European Convention on Human Rights - guaranteeing the 'right to a family life' - has helped a total of 102 people frustrate the deportation process.These include a number of violent criminals and illegal immigrants who had no other right to remain in the country.In one case, a foreign criminal who used Article Eight was a violent thug and drug dealer who beat his girlfriend and failed to pay child maintenance.None claimed they would be in danger of torture or abuse if they were sent back to their home countries."
Slovakia is now the country with most citizens moving to the UK
"New figures reveal 49,000 Slovakians came to live here in 2010, a massive 513 per cent increase on the 8,000 who arrived in 2004."

J K Rowling Part II

In a departure from normal blogging, and due to the amount of moderated mail,it is in order to address a few questions that are cropping up. Mrs J Murray, aka J K Rowling, aka Joanne Rowling, was mentioned in an earlier blog post due to purchasing a 'holiday home' or two in Tasmania, Australia. While you and I may enjoy the dream of a caravan in Sandy Bay for our holidays, people with international lives have to look further afield. To get the peace and quiet that you and I take for granted, it is harder for well known folk to get when every odd bod wants to knock on your door. Tasmania is a good choice to make,but purchasing historical buildings is going to attract attention, just as it did for the late George Harrison when he bought a home on an island off Queensland. These things do get noticed, and in today's internet age that does not take long.... Good luck to Mrs Murray and family, and no, I will not be putting up the exact locations of their UK family properties. To close, Tasmania was largely built on convict slave labour, and now Port Arthur is to have a new detention centre for illegal immigrants that are flooding into Australia via boats. Peace and Quiet ?

Oh, and don't forget...."in Tasmania and the landscape is just stunning, wild and rugged, but it’s infested with snakes – if you get bitten you’ve got to get an antivenom shot within 35 minutes or you could die. Most people keep the shots on the farm"

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Labour spending: Gordon Brown and Ed Balls ignored warnings and wasted billions

"Gordon Brown and Ed Balls ignored warnings over the profligacy of their spending plans and the damaging impact of key tax policies, leaked documents disclose. "

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Microsoft told to pay $272m in patent case

Herald Sun (Australia)
"THE US Supreme Court says Microsoft Corp must pay a $272.6 million patent infringement judgment awarded to a small Toronto software company in a patent lawsuit. "

Ed: Well, well....

Joanne 'Kathleen' Rowling...

Daily Mail
Harry Potter's JK Rowling could be magicking herself to Australia after buying £6.5m mansion in Tasmania
"Reports in Australia say the billionaire author has bought Symmons Plains, a Georgian mansion complete with 856 hectare farm. .....Australia's Woman's Day magazine also claims JK Rowling owns another Georgian-era Tasmanian property called Bowood at Bridport. It says the properties will be managed by one man, Stephen Cresse.The author, who is very guarded about her privacy, is believed to have bought Symmons Plains in March. .....They added: 'We believe she will use the property as a holiday hideaway.'


Harry Potter author JK Rowling plans to build Hagrid's hut in her back garden
"According to the Sunday Times she bought her home in Edinburgh for £2.5 million in 2009 after seeing just two of the 31 rooms along with a neighbouring house for £1m so that she could knock it down to improve security and increase space."

ED: It cannot be easy to find space in our crowded world....

Monday, 6 June 2011

Cash-strapped council spending £250,000 of public money in U.S. courts to silence Twitter 'whistleblower' may have an awful lot to hide

Daily Mail
"For more than two years, South Tyneside Council has been trying to uncover the identity of an anonymous blogger known as Mr Monkey, who has mercilessly criticised and ridiculed Cllr Malcolm and his colleagues. .....Papers lodged at the Superior Court of California spell out, in black and white, their intention to seek an ‘award of money’ for ‘damage to their reputations’.

This, despite a 1993 Law Lords ruling that councils should not be allowed to take action for libel because of the ‘inhibiting effect on freedom of speech’. Individual councillors and employees can choose to do so, but not local authorities with taxpayers’ money.

Doesn’t the role of South Tyneside in this increasingly grubby tale — namely its decision, taken in secret, to fund the entire cost of these ill-judged proceedings — make a mockery of the Law Lord’s ruling?

For whoever Mr Monkey may be, surely the real scandal here is that taxpayers’ money is being used to defend the reputations of controversial politicians like councillors Iain Malcolm and David Potts."

Weary Rhodri Giggs emerges from marital home after 'dumping his wife for eight-year affair with brother Ryan'

Daily Mail
*'Devastated' Rhodri 'in a bad way' after discovering details of affair
*Manchester United star slept with Natasha Giggs the day after his daughter was born
*'Squeaky clean' footballer continued affair while he was also seeing Big Brother housemate Imogen Thomas

The injunction farce goes on! Irish paper flouts gagging order obtained by married entertainer who used it to cover up affair
Ed: It seems that anyone with a computer can find the information now......

Friday, 3 June 2011

Why Barack Obama may be heading for electoral disaster in 2012

"On a recent visit to London I was struck by how much faith many British politicians, journalists and political advisers have in Barack Obama being re-elected in 2012. ...But back in the United States, the reality looks a lot different. Many political leaders in Britain fail to understand the degree to which the American people are deeply unhappy with their president’s poor handling of the economy. Nor have they grasped the epic scale of the defeat suffered by the president in the November mid-terms, and the emphatic rejection by a clear majority of Americans of the Big Government Obama agenda.

Just seven months ago, the United States was swept by a conservative revolution that fundamentally transformed the political landscape on Capitol Hill, and gravely weakened the ability of the president to pass legislation. This revolution is not in retreat but gaining ground, ....."

Thursday, 2 June 2011

The Bank of England’s Great Inflation Swindle

Guido Fawkes
"Guido believes it is the deliberate policy of the Fed and the Bank of England, with the complicity of their political masters in the US Treasury and HM Treasury, to inflate their government debts away. Inflation is a pernicious form of taxation, it punishes the old and those who save and leads to a worse reckoning in the end. We are being deliberately swindled by the political elite."

Greece Default Risk Raised to 50% at Moody’s as EU Readies Second Bailout

"Greece’s risk of default was raised to 50 percent by Moody’s Investors Service as European officials rushed to put together the second bailout plan in two years to stave off renewed financial turmoil in the region.

Moody’s downgraded Greece to Caa1 from B1, putting it on a par with Cuba, according to a report published late yesterday. The move came after policy makers considered asking investors to reinvest in new Greek debt when existing bonds mature.

Twelve years after the currency was started, European leaders are trying to prevent the euro area’s first sovereign default. A 110 billion-euro ($158 billion) rescue in 2010 failed to prevent an investor exodus from Greece, and the country now faces a funding gap of 30 billion euros of bonds next year with its 10-year borrowing cost above 16 percent.

“Taken together, these risks imply at least an even chance of default over the rating horizon,” Moody’s said in a statement. “Over five-year investment horizons, around 50 percent of Caa1-rated sovereigns, non-financial corporate and financial institutions have consistently met their debt-service requirements. Around 50 percent have defaulted.”

161,000 asylum seekers allowed to stay in the UK in amnesty after blunders by Border Agency

Daily Mail
"Tens of thousands of asylum seekers have in effect been granted an amnesty to stay in Britain because of blunders in the immigration system, MPs said last night.

They are among 450,000 whose case files were found abandoned in boxes at the Home Office five years ago. Of these, 430,000 have now been considered, and 161,000 immigrants have been given the right to stay – many simply because they have been here so long. On top of that, another 74,500 people have been ‘lost’ because officials do not know whether they have left the country or died. They are placed in a ‘controlled archive’ for six months while checks are carried out before they are put in storage – in effect, written off.In a damning report, the Commons home affairs select committee said: ‘In practice an amnesty has taken place, at considerable cost to the taxpayer.’