Sold out to the over-reaching EU. Again.

I’ve been meaning to write a comprehensive post on the powers over matters of justice that we have handed over to the EU, including the European Arrest Warrant. Well, I say comprehensive, but I’m not a lawyer. I was just going to borrow extensively from excellent law blogger ObiterJ.

For a decent insight, read his posts:

    The evidence of the last Labour government selling the British people out is as comprehensive as it is frightening and infuriating.
    So this immediately caught my attention:

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Anger at Britain’s “gold-plating” of the controversial European Arrest Warrant is growing after it emerged that other EU countries have secured significant safeguards for their citizens that are not available to British nationals.

Although the European Arrest Warrant (EAW) was intended to operate in the same way in all 27 EU states, The Sunday Telegraph has established that many other European countries have given themselves “opt-outs” or conditions to protect their citizens.

It comes after this newspaper first highlighted concerns last week over the way that the warrant system was being used in Britain.

Holland will not extradite Dutch nationals under the EAW unless the accusing state agrees that they can serve any prison sentence in a Dutch jail. The Belgians have opt-outs so that the warrant does not cover abortion.

Abortion and “abetting abortion” are crimes in some EU states, including Malta, Ireland and Poland – Europe’s most active issuer of EAWs.

Birth control campaigners fear they could be targeted by antiabortionists under the EAW, even simply for running a British-based advice website accessible from abroad.

France appears reluctant to extradite its own nationals under the EAW and has stated in the past that they will not be extradited.

Europe’s largest country, Germany, has imposed a “proportionality rule” stating that only those accused of serious crimes can be seized under a warrant. The definition of serious is not given, but it would exclude large numbers of the trivial charges dealt with by the British extradition courts.

One Kent motorist, Patrick Reece-Edwards, spent weeks in a British jail awaiting extradition to Poland on a charge of possessing a forged motor insurance certificate. When he was finally extradited, the matter was resolved by the payment of a civil penalty with no criminal record.

So many people – mostly Poles – are extradited from Britain to Poland on minor charges that special fortnightly military flights are operated for them from a London airfield. The hundreds of trivial requests are also a serious drain on police, prison and court resources.

Britain has no such opt-outs, and campaigners say that British judges are too cautious in applying the overriding requirements of the Human Rights Act.

Karen Todner, one of Britain’s leading extradition lawyers, said: “It is typical of us not to have given ourselves proper protection.

“British judges apply the EAW treaty to the letter and these massive injustices come about because the Government hasn’t thought this through.

“There are a lot of quite simple things we could do now to mitigate the harm done to British citizens, which could be done quite quickly through a simple administrative decision.”

British citizens sent abroad under the EAW are also at a serious disadvantage. Since foreigners are regarded as flight risks, bail is often refused and pretrial detention, even for minor crimes, can last for years.

I really don’t know where to begin.

What on Earth could those responsible for this situation have been thinking? Were they negligent, incompetent, acting out of complete disregard for people or what?

The ConDems say they’re looking at our extradition arrangements, but I very much doubt they have the will or the ability to right this massive and self-evident wrong that was yet another fantastic bequest from Labour. Perhaps more to the point, the same civil servants who lovingly gold-plated the whole thing in the first place are now, presumably, in charge of reviewing the arrangements.

Blunkett, who first signed off the EAW is unruffled about the perverse outcomes:

Mr Blunkett said: “I was right, as Home Secretary in the post-9/11 era, to agree to the European Arrest Warrant, but I was insufficiently sensitive to how it might be used.”.

This is just another reason why I just loathe Labour, and every single one of their supporters, for what they have done to the country I was born in.

I’ve already written to my MP about this, and as soon as Parliament is back in session, I’ll be hounding him for a response.

Do the same, make some fucking noise.

AJ

UPDATE: I wonder why I fucking bother, when DK comes along to remind us why he’s a leading libertarian blogger & I’m a useless cunt with copy & paste buttons.

Required listening

If you want to hear the BBC’s Europhile cock-gobblers eating some humble pie, listen to Radio 4 at 20:00 on Tuesday 24th August.

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The Euro is in deep trouble.

As the project intended to unify the European Union causes even deeper divisions, questions are being raised about whether nations as diverse as Germany and Greece can really share the same currency.

The repercussions spread far beyond mainland Europe. Britain is affected as British firms struggle to sell to the Eurozone.

Jonathan Charles was the BBC’s Europe correspondent in the 1990s, when the euro was first introduced to great fanfare. He travelled widely around the continent, reporting on the years of preparations leading to the final launch of the euro.

Now he retraces his steps, returning to some of those places and speaking to the likes of former Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont, the UK’s treasury minister and ambassador at the time, and prominent European figures including the former Dutch Prime Minister Wim Kok and some top European bankers. Jonathan also talks to ordinary workers whose livelihood has been fundamentally changed by the advent of euro zone.

Having taken Europe’s temperature, Jonathan asks if the Euro will survive, and what does it mean for Europe’s dream of political integration?

Suck it up, socialist monkeys. The Euro is in collapse and the EU won’t be far behind it.

AJ

The result is in: ConDemFail

16th July:

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My fingers were crossed for a triumph of hope over experience.

Today:

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Theresa May, the Home Secretary, will today announce she plans to sign up to the so-called European Investigation Order (EIO), The Daily Telegraph understands.

That’s it, then. The honeymoon is absolutely 100% over.

Liberties endangered, powers given away to the EU, without a referendum.

Slow hand clap for Cameron and May, everybody.

AJ

Smaller government, less regulation, more freedom.

Not.

Department of Energy and Climate Change confirmed that the Government was considering a variable stamp duty rate to encourage people to green up their homes.

‘There are many incentives that we are considering to tackle home efficiency. No final decision has been made, but we are considering it,’ a spokesman said.

Since 2008 all homes put up for sale have had an energy performance certificate, which ranks them on a scale from A for the best, to G for the least efficient.

To avoid paying the higher stamp duty, a home would need to be upgraded to at least a band E.

Ah yes, because when the home information packs were ‘scrapped’, there was still something stuck to our shoe. The Energy Performance Certificate, which is mandated by the EU.

The proposals would be introduced alongside the Government’s Green Deal – a £90 billion scheme to cut the fuel bills of 14 million homes.

Under the Green Deal, householders will be offered "free" green makeovers by energy companies, local councils or DIY chains from 2012.

Free’? Ah – as in more freedom? Oh..

The money spent on new insulation, double glazing or replacement boilers will be claimed back from the savings made in energy bills.

The Government says the green makeovers are essential if the UK is to meet its legally binding targets of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 34 per cent of their 1990 levels within 10 years.

Ah yes. Greenhouse gases. The science isn’t settled there, even.

Why do physicists keep silent? Because the greenhouse-effect is based on backradiation and to understand that backradiation is unphysical, requires understanding the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. But the 2nd Law is a mystery to modern physicists and thus a modern physicist cannot say what should be said, namely that backradiation violates the 2nd Law and thus the greenhouse-effect is fiction.

Of course, such thought could be outlawed as a heresy by the EU*.

Or, it could just be outlawed in one EU country, that could then seek to arrest and extradite people who publish skeptical blogs elsewhere in Europe where no such offence exists.

FFS.

AJ

* This is a link to the BNP website. I don’t accept that it can be dismissed solely on that basis.

Big test approaching for the ConDems

If this goes ahead, we’ll know immediately that this government needs to be fought relentlessly until it is defeated.

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The proposed power would allow officers from an EU country to demand information on anyone they suspect of an offence, no matter how minor or whether it is even criminal in the UK.

The directive would see UK police almost powerless to prevent the handing over of personal details such as DNA, bank account or even telephone records.

Fair Trials International (FTI) said it could result in disproportionate requests, such as demands for the DNA of plane loads of British holidaymakers following a murder in their resort.

It could also see British officers chasing crimes that are not even covered by UK law such as criminal defamation.

The EIO is designed to help law enforcement agencies in EU states share information better and be more effective in combating cross border crime.

But campaigners fear it grants significantly wider powers to foreign officers and will lead to a substantial increase in requests.

Dominic Raab, Tory MP for Esher and Walton, who raised the issue in the House of Commons yesterday, said: “Britain should not opt into this half-baked measure.

“It would allow European police to order British officers to embark on wild-goose chases.

“It would force our police to hand over personal information on British citizens, even if they are not suspects and the conduct under investigation is not a crime in this country.

“And it gives foreign police law enforcement authority on British soil.

“The Order won’t help tackle crime – it will waste police time and ditch safeguards that UK citizens expect from the British justice system.”

The Home Office has until July 28 to decide whether to opt in to the order or not.

So in two weeks time, we will know precisely where we stand regarding not just civil liberties, but regarding Dave’s promise of a referendum before handing more powers to the EU.

Oh – just one bit of dissonance to share with you from that story:

Some senior Tories are understood to be concerned about it but Whitehall sources suggested the Liberal Democrat members of the Coalition are more supportive.

Hmmm…

AJ

Silver linings

My opinion diverges from that of Big Brother Watch on the matter of the EU’s attempts to ban the ‘mosquito’.

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Sure, you can argues that these devices are evil, misanthropic and insidious. And they are.

But there are two much wider and more important observations to be made.

The UK government has rejected calls to ban a device that uses a high-pitched noise to disperse teenage gangs.

A non-kneejerk reaction contrary to the bansturbators. Good.

A report for the Council of Europe last week called for a ban, suggesting its use may breach human rights law.

Refusing to bend over for the Euronumpties. Good.

You want to name and shame organisations that use these things? Have at it.

You want to lobby and campaign against their use on whatever grounds you find? Fair play.

Persuade, negotiate, shame if you have to, but banning stuff? Forget it, statist imbeciles.

AJ

Dave Quixote and the Windmills of Europe

I smelled a rat when I read this:

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What are we vetoing, Dave? A new treaty? An amendment to Lisbon? Ah. No.

Despite Dave’s determination to give it star billing, however, Merkel was at pains to play down the idea of a new treaty, stressing that it was "early days" as yet, to be considering such changes. This low-key approach was echoed by yesterday’s meeting of a "taskforce" of EU finance ministers under the chairmanship of EU council president Herman Van Rompuy.

French finance minister Christine Lagarde suggested forgetting about the treaty and concentrating on the "deliverables", while her German counterpart, Wolfgang Schaeuble, advised his colleagues to do what could be done without treaty changes and then to examine the options. Nobody was proposing any treaty changes in the short-term, said Van Rompuy.

In the meantime, Richard North also reveals that:

That didn’t stop little Georgie Osborne laying down the law to the colleagues about disclosure of "national budget plans" and the need for elected members of the House of Commons to be told about them first. Given that budgets are now routinely cleared with the Commission before they are publically announced, this reinforced the growing conviction that little Georgie really is as stupid as he looks.

No-one’s fooled.

For the time being, though, the "tough talking" is playing well enough to the gallery, sufficient at any rate to blur the details of last Wednesday’s humiliation, when Osborne was obliged to accept the new rules on hedge funds, without even the opportunity to address the council meeting.

It certainly allows "Call me Dave" to tell his faithful that he is protecting the national interest, and some of them are still gullible enough to believe him … the great "eurosceptic" who is really "engaging" with Europe and telling them what’s what.

And we haven’t even gotten into things the Eurozone countries can do, that Dave can’t stop, even though they’ll cost us money.

AJ

Bin there, turned around, came back again

I previously prodded in the general direction of a story about the counterproductive nature of the currently fashionable bin-fascism.

Tory communities spokesman Caroline Spelman said: ‘Weekly rubbish collections were introduced because of the harm to the environment from fly-tipping and backyard burning. Yet the lessons of the past have been forgotten.

‘Labour’s bin bully policies have slashed back proper bin collections. Now Labour ministers have conspired to cover up the serious threat to public health their policies have caused.’

Via Big Brother Watch today, another of Ms Spelman’s previous quotes was highlighted:

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In the Daily Mail, then Shadow Minister for Local Government, Caroline Spelman, slammed the government saying:

"Labour Ministers are secretly planning to roll out bin taxes across the country after the election if Gordon Brown can cling to power. The Government have already forced through bin tax laws and have been funding the bin technology to collect the taxes."

And speaking to the BBC, she said:

"bin taxes would harm the environment by encouraging fly-tipping and backyard burning"

Fairly unequivocal then…

However yesterday – 20th May 2010 – just 78 days later; Caroline Spelman, now Environment Minister, said:

"It will be up to the local authority to adopt a policy on recycling that works locally."

This leaves the door wide-open for councils to bring in "pay-as-you-throw" schemes. Some of you might think that’s fair enough. But we believe councils should not even be given the opportunity to test the water.

Quite so. We already know what the ‘unintended’ consequences will be.

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My recycling, yesterday.

AJ

EuroStench

Apparently, the Eurozone will be permitting Cameron no honeymoon period.

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Shocked European ministers are preparing for emergency talks to shore up the euro after markets fell in reaction to panic measures in Germany.

Angela Merkel stunned EU capitals by warning that the euro was in danger and triggered fears of a fresh financial meltdown by announcing a ban on risky trading practices by speculators. The German Chancellor’s actions opened up new cracks in the single currency, drawing sharp criticism from France and prompting Brussels to issue an appeal for unity.

Shares in London plunged by nearly 3 per cent, with similar falls in Paris, Berlin and Madrid. The euro plummeted to a new low against the dollar before making a slight recovery.

European finance ministers, who have just hammered out a massive rescue plan for Greece, will hear controversial calls from Germany at a meeting tomorrow for changes to the Lisbon treaty to give Brussels powers to co-ordinate national budgets.

Well, that’s our ‘in’ for a referendum, right there. Sweet.

Ms Merkel believes that the EU should have stronger powers to organise the “orderly insolvency” of countries such as Greece that set giveaway budgets with no means of paying for them.

That’s us, that is.

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After announcing a ban on speculative share trading in Germany’s top financial institutions and the bonds of Eurozone countries until next March,

Question. What is to stop US and Far Eastern markets shorting them instead?

she warned: “This challenge is existential and we have to rise to it. The euro is in danger. If we don’t deal with this danger, then the consequences for us in Europe are incalculable . . . If the euro fails, then Europe fails.”

Rubs hands together and cackles gleefully.

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So where does Cameron come into it?

Her apocalyptic warning came as David Cameron prepared for his first visit as Prime Minister to Paris and Berlin, where he is likely to come under pressure to commit more British funds to EU bailout programmes.

Aha! Ich denke nicht, Frau Merkin. Va niquer ta mère, Monsieur Sarcoma.

Ms Merkel may have intended her words to be a rallying cry to stop the crisis of confidence spreading from Greece to Portugal, Spain and Italy. But the markets were shaken because Germany is seen as the bedrock of the euro, which was introduced just ten years ago and now covers 16 countries.

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Wait! I know what to do! Let’s… wait. what??

Wolfgang Schäuble, the German Finance Minister, called for an urgent rewriting of the eurozone rulebook.

Yeah – let’s bin the basis on which we’ve thus far gulled investors into the Eurozone. Let’s make up something new, that won’t cause a massive revaluation of every single foreign investment in the EU.

Better still, let’s make the market work better by strangling and torturing it some more. Perhaps even a little waterboarding.

He told the Financial Times: “I’m convinced the markets are really out of control. That is why we need really effective regulation, in the sense of creating a properly functioning market mechanism.”

Herman Van Rompuy, the European Council Haiku President, said “Market working wrong. Its body is sclerotic. Let’s shake it some more.”

AJ

Pressure on Merkel spells trouble for UK

And it’s hardly surprising.

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Her conservative-liberal coalition was trounced in key regional elections on Sunday amid rising anger over the deal that will cost her country £19 billion.

The result stripped her government of its majority in the country’s Bundesrat, or senate, and her ability to pass reforms cutting public spending.

Yesterday (MON), Mrs Merkel was forced to admit her government would have to abandon planned tax cuts because of Germany’s payout to Greece and a new commitment to help other struggling euro zone countries as part of an EU bail-out agreed in Brussels yesterday.

"We’ve suffered a stinging defeat, there’s no way around it," she said. "Tax cuts won’t be possible for the foreseeable future. We see that in the debate about the euro, about the guarantees and much else."

Germany’s opposition Social Democrats yesterday vowed to use the chancellor’s new weakness to disrupt her government’s plans to reform health care and taxes.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the Social Democrat leader, threatened to link new legislation to commit German financing to a euro bail-out with left-wing demands to increase taxation.

And we may not be in the Euro, but we’re still yoked to Germany, which has fallen into the hands of the lunatics:

In a development that threatens the City of London with extra regulation, Mr Steinmeier demanded tough European laws against "speculators" and for tough regulation of financial markets as the price for opposition support.

He told that his party is not against rescuing troubled euro zone countries but will insist on "instruments" to punish the financial institutions the German left blames for crisis.

"It is those who don’t do anything to regulate the financial markets and the costs of the crisis who fail on Europe," Mr Steinmeier said.

And the Lisbon treaty has provided the tools to allow this to happen.

As they say on Twitter, #thankyouGordon

AJ

Meanwhile in Berlin

Things not looking good for Merkel, after signing up to the Greece bailout.

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Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, was facing a bruising defeat on Sunday in a critical federal state election, as the polls closed in a fiercely fought race in North Rhine-Westphalia, the most populous state in Germany.

Exit polls predicted a victory for the “red-green” alliance of Social Democrats and Greens over Ms Merkel’s “black-yellow” coalition of Christian Democrats and Free Democrats. The result, if confirmed, would give the red-green combination just enough seats to form a stable government, according to the poll on the ZDF television channel.

An interesting and timely case-study in PR, if ever there was one. As I understand it, the black-yellow coalition is the equivalent of a Lib/Con coalition.

If the CDU does as badly as the exit polls suggest, it could fuel inner party criticism of the chancellor from conservatives, who believe she has taken the party too far into the centre ground of German politics.

I’ll be keeping my eye on that.

AJ

Silent running

I can’t find it on my blog anywhere (yet) but I saw this one coming a year ago.

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The vision of tranquil modern cities, with inhabitants gliding by silently in electric cars, may be shattered by European plans to introduce artificial warning sounds to the new generation of zero-emission vehicles.

Each manufacturer may be permitted to provide its own “signature tune”, with the regulation simply setting a minimum volume to prevent pedestrians, cyclists and especially blind people from stepping into the path of battery-powered cars.

Some manufacturers are likely to opt for an engine noise while others are considering adopting the noises of spacecraft from science fiction films, such as the podracers from Star Wars.

Oh fabulous – not content with having a mobile phone that makes a stupid noise everytime it rings, we can expect people to be downloading ‘broomtones’ for their cars. A GWiz with a Ferrari sound-track. A Corsa that plays Girls Aloud in the direction of travel.

Genius.

AJ

Standard & Poor put skids under Greece

… sorry.

I’ve been trying for several days to write something about the situation in Greece.

I think I’ve been going wrong, in trying to draw lessons for the UK, be it in terms of the Euro, debt, GDP, state spending etc. Each time I’ve run into a brick wall. We’re not really in the same boat as Greece whichever way I try to frame it.

The Greek situation continues to fascinate me nonetheless. Today their sovereign debt was downgraded to junk status.

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Greece’s debt has been downgraded to noninvestment status by Standard & Poor’s amid mounting fears that the debt crisis in Europe is spiraling out of control.

In a statement Tuesday, the agency says that it is lowering its rating on Greece’s debt three full notches, to BB+ from BBB — the first level of speculative, or junk, status.

The outlook is negative, meaning the agency could downgrade the rating again.

The agency is also warning debtholders that they only have an average chance of between 30 to 50 percent of getting their money back in the event of a debt restructuring or default.

The Germans are making noises about forcing Greece out of the Euro, Merkel is equivocating about a rescue-package. Deeper cuts are being demanded of Greece, and there’s already civil unrest about what they’ve had to do so far and what is to come as a consequence of a Eurozone/IMF bailout.

There’s a knock on effect on Portugal, with dangers present for Ireland and Spain, too, as well as the rest of us who trade with the Eurozone.

Meanwhile, much better informed views than mine here, at Burning Our Money.

This can’t possibly end well.

AJ

The shite locker

Kudos to Gordon Brown

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Gordon Brown hurled a torrent of abuse at EU Foreign Minister Baroness Ashton in a row over the way she is doing her job, it was disclosed last night.

The Prime Minister swore repeatedly at the Baroness over the telephone, leaving her shaken, according to well-placed sources.

Details of Mr Brown’s latest bullying outburst prompted claims that Baroness Ashton, 53, is losing the confidence of her own Government, as well as Brussels. According to one source, he accused her of ‘letting Britain down’.

Finally, Brown speaks to me. If only he could take it as well as dish it out, the Jock bastard.

AJ

What we signed up for: an EU fuel tax

Alarming.

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Proposals expected to be announced next month would give the EU its first funding which would not come from national governments.

Algirdas Semeta, the new European commissioner for taxation, is planning a "minimum rate of tax on carbon" across the whole EU as a "priority".

Fuck. Right. Off.

AJ

Greece wins record Euromillions rollover jackpot

President of Greece, Karolos Papoulias, yesterday secured an important reprieve for the nation steeped in debt.

As the holder of a winning Euromillions ticket, he shared a £113,000,000 prize with a plumber from Coventry called Dave Basketweave.

Nevertheless fears abound that the Greek crisis could lead to a complete collapse of the Euro.  In fact the French banking chief consider this to be inevitable.  Who knew the French even had a banking chief!?

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Not many and this is particularly good news for the UK because we depend a great deal on trade with the Euro zone. In the short term perhaps exchange rate movements will be in our favour, but if these countries are completely screwed there’s no trade to be done.

It should not go unremarked upon, of course, that Gordon Brown stood alone in the forefront of the Labour Party in resisting joining the Euro and notwithstanding our ignominious exit from the ERM, it’s pretty much Brown that has made damn sure it hasn’t happened in the last 13 years.

Otherwise, we could quite easily have been the next state after Greece to receive special measures from the EU which basically means they take control of our entire budget and with it pretty much our entire social and economic and fiscal policy.

Sadly what Gordon hasn’t done is guarantee that we won’t be contributing to the cost of bailing Greece out.

AJ

Merde du jour

I had a whole bunch of stories I wanted to blog about, but then I had to go and do some fucking work, which impressed me not a jot.

So, here’s what I had lined up for today:

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Which is rather contrary to the weaselly claims he made at PMQs on Wednesday.

Next, who gives a fuck about this?

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I have absolutely no idea why this shit is still illegal in this country. Fucking puritans.

As for vice cops – Captain Buzzkill one and all – lowest of all cops. And that’s low. Once again, I refer you to the honourable Doug Stanhope.

Talking of cops…

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There are plenty of non-public sector blogs for children and hokey old women who like to anthropomorphise animals. That is all.

I’d rather you just concentrated on not melting the dogs to death in your cars, chaps.

In old news recycled:

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Ofgem reported on this yesterday?

Perhaps they’d have saved themselves 12 months by just reading some blogs and newspapers. After all, some of us have been concerned about this for a while now. Or maybe it just took them 6 months to remove the swearing from my blog posts.

Indeed – the front page of The Economist looked like this last August:

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Concerning.

More concerning, though, is this:

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Read that carefully, click through and digest. By many measures, we’re not in much better shape than Greece. We could end up in the same boat as them if our sovereign debt is downgraded this year.

So, perhaps the fact that we’re not in the Eurozone is the only thing standing between the us and ‘special measures’ imposed by Brussels, including a budget imposed by the ECB.

Next – the shock. The Sherlock. The meh.

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No fucking surprise when you look at what our society has become – divided, spiteful, shallow, avaricious, covetous, resentful, expensive, dirty, violent – and what our state has become – overweaning, overtaxing, under-delivering, deceitful, fraudulent, war-mongering, fear-mongering, risk-averse, bullying, nagging and judgemental.

Errr.. that’s it for now. If there’s anyone I didn’t mention, they’re all nobheads too.

AJ

The Transnational Socialist Corporatist Conspiracy

A while back, I wondered:

if the web of tin-foil hat conspiracy theories on the intermong provides the perfect cover for governments to carry out the most absurd stunts with impunity?

I also recently quoted Peter Hitchen’s contention that Marxist ends have become so entrenched in post-war western society that the Tory party has espoused them.

The goals which revolutionary Marxists of my generation sought – a radical reordering of the relations between the sexes, a weakening of the married family, a general moral, cultural and social revolution, the destruction of the taboos against abortion, illegitimacy and divorce, egalitarian education, the abolition of frontiers and of nation states, the end of restrictions on immigration and the withering away of national borders, the sociological approach to crime as opposed to the belief that wrongdoing was an act of free will that deserved punishment, the infiltration of the media, the schools and universities by radical and revolutionary ideas about history and society, the dismantling of the canon of literature and of conservative attitudes towards history, the general denigration of the British Empire, the demolition of the idea that education was a passing on of accepted knowledge, and so of the idea that teachers are figures of authority – are now the policies of the establishment and so the policies of the Modern Conservative party – despite occasional sops – of the sort listed by Tim [Montgomerie] – offered to conservative thinkers.

So I’m obliged to Fausty, who recently came up with some quite interesting material from the USA.

The deliberate dumbing down of the world

Charlotte Iserbyt, Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Education in Ronald Reagan’s government, had access to official documentation detailing the way in which education around the world was to be dumbed down to provide the "perfect workers" for corporations.

The purpose of all of this, Iserbyt says, is to groom children for work in corporations – "workforce training". Various programmes have been implemented in state schools – such as "no child left behind, role playing, eliminating competition, etc.

These programmes are implemented by teachers, who have been given "sensitivity training" by "change agents".

Hell, even our police get sensitivity training.

Iserbyt documents the process of dumbing down in her book "The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America", which is largely comprised of extracts from official government documentation.

Download the book for free here.

In it, she explains that Professor Benjamin Bloom, Behavioural Psychologist (author of the Taxonomy of Educational Objectives, which teachers are required to study), regarded the purpose of education as the facility "to change the thoughts, actions and feelings of students". Reading, writing and arithmetic are NOT the objective.

Bloom said that one method of changing a student’s beliefs (e.g., from a belief in God to an atheistic stance) is to challenge the student. He claimed he could change a student’s beliefs in one hour.

Do read on and watch some of the most informative videos, including this one, which takes a little of your time, but shows how all the wealth we are creating and earning is being absorbed in spite of most consumer goods and services (cars, clothes, food & eating out, holidays, travel) have become much cheaper in a generation. It also shows how having a family is a FAR riskier enterprise now, financially, than it was a generation ago.

Fast forward to about 4:30 to get straight into it.

A notable feature is the direct and indirect consequence of the need for the average household to have two incomes.

The line of enquiry as to how that came to be isn’t explored here, but feminism, as part of the above Marxist agenda features heavily by my reckoning.

And stick your tin-foil hat right up your arse.

AJ

All out of rant…

Well, I seem to have reached an impasse.

I’ve tried everything. I’ve consorted with a woman, I’ve stopped my medication, I’ve drunk Scottish beer, I’ve been in Tesco, I’ve read the newspapers. And a shit-load of purportedly infuriating blog posts, too.

But, I appear to be all ranted out. I’m sure it’s not a permanent condition – at least I hope not, or I could find myself leafing through the couture adverts in the back of the Mail on Sunday magazine. I have Dignitas on speed-dial, just on case.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that any of the people who I’ve called cunts on this blog have stopped being cunts. Quite the opposite. Just that, presently, I don’t seem to have a spare fuck to give.

Brown’s intent on leaving the country in a persistent vegetative state, as a matter of dogma. Rather than planning to reverse the poly-dimensional decline, Cameron is practicing his dribbling.

We are about to enter an election campaign period that will see the Labour left sink to previously un-plumbed depths of dirty campaigning, and still upwards of 7 million people are likely to vote for them. The Conservatives are all about winning the 3 million or so swing votes and will say any old nebulous weasel crap to do so.

There is, however, a glimmer of hope that radical and insightful conservative thought exists in the party. I’m not talking about Messrs Hannan and Carswell, who may have achieved cult status, but seem to have mainly succeeded in getting themselves painted as a pair of right-wing mentalists.

I’m talking about one Dominic Raab. Amongst other things he ran David Davis’ by-election campaign in 2008.

He wrote this:

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It is well worth reading.

I recently referred to reading “The Rotten State of Britain” by Eamonn Butler, head of the ASI. A valid criticism of that book, made by a punter on Amazon, is that it’s not much more than a catalogue of whinges, the like of which can be found by reading a handful of blogs. My main criticism, though, is that it isn’t referenced. At all. No way to go back and examine the author’s source material. For the kind of book this is, I find the omission unforgivable. The consequence is that Butler’s otherwise worthy book provides one with the sound basis for no argument whatsoever.

The Assault on Liberty suffers from none of the lack of focus that Butlers book seemed to. Nor does it suffer from the lack of references, which are provided at the back of the book, albeit rather informally done.

A further difference is that while Butler’s book, laudably enough, reminded me of things that have happened in the last twelve years, Raab actually managed to teach me a few things. Perhaps things that a lot of politics junkies take as read, but hey – I haven’t been paying enough attention, and it’s no comfort that I’ve been paying more attention than most of the populace.

For example, it may have been the Tories who took us into the common market on a false prospectus (the last time we had a referendum), but it was Labour who signed up to the European Convention on Human Rights in 1950, which they had a large part in crafting. In so doing they lost a key argument with the French about how the Convention should be framed.

Labour accepted the jurisdiction of the Strasbourg court (ECHR) in 1966. They also incorporated ECHR case law into British law when they passed the Human Rights Act in 1998.

Unsurprisingly, the ECHR grew arms and legs, becoming, by the late 70’s, an unelected & unaccountable body not of judges, but of law-makers. They were making law based on a trans-national socialist framework. They still are.

There is a big problem with the HRA, too. The ECHR doesn’t take past rulings to represent precedent. Each case is heard in isolation, with only reference to the Convention. This gives rise to apparently contrary rulings. Although this does not conflict with the nature of that court’s role, it means that when Labour came along and decided to bind ECHR case law into British law, they created a swill of perverse case law, resulting in unpredictable rulings.

The net result is that no-one, or company, or government agency knows where they stand with respect to the law. Such uncertainly gives rise to risk-averseness, and a proliferation of insurances, regulations and litigation that suffocate enterprise and civil society alike. More fundamentally, such uncertainty is bad for liberty, bad for democracy and bad for human well-being.

This is just one insight gleaned from what is, in my opinion, an excellent book. Although I don’t agree with all of the logic of every conclusion, and I’m skeptical about the worth and wisdom of instituting a new Bill of Rights, as Raab advocates, I commend the book to you.

Sadly, Mr Raab is about to be gelded: he is the Conservative candidate for the very safe seat of Esher and Walton in Surrrey. So, who does that leave in the party free to express a focus on the importance of retaining and regaining our liberty?

Tomorrow, I’ll be cunt-surfing on the M25, so expect the red mist to return.

AJ

Gordon Brown Did This…

Oh, he cosied up to the City for as long as he thought them useful to him, but ultimately, in putting Barrenness Ashtray up for EU Foreign Minister, he has caused this:

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Alistair Darling has delivered a blunt warning to the EU’s new French finance chief against meddling with the City of London.

As Nicolas Sarkozy gloated over impending curbs on the City, the Chancellor said that such moves would drive financial services out of Europe.

The French President’s glee at the appointment of Michel Barnier as Commissioner for the Single Market took on an edge of menace yesterday when he said that unfettered City practices must end.

“Do you know what it means for me to see for the first time in 50 years a French European commissioner in charge of the internal market, including financial services, including the City [of London]?" he said yesterday.

"I want the world to see the victory of the European model, which has nothing to do with the excesses of financial capitalism," he said.

His implicit threat was just what Downing Street had feared when Mr Barnier, formerly an agriculture minister, was given the portfolio last week.

They feared it? They fucking caused it. Even Mandelbum agrees on that.

Perhaps another contribution to us sliding back into recession in 2010.

Is this what we need to happen before there’s a big enough growndswell to make leaving the EU a politically viable option?

AJ

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