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Posts Tagged ‘Labour Government’

Cuts & Runs.

September 21, 2009 Leave a comment

There is a kind of obscene haste at the moment with politicians from all three major parties in what seems to be a new game of boasting about future cuts in public spending. The public sector has become a whipping post a target for plans for pay freezes, pension reductions and unemployment. Let us recall this recession began with the selfish, greedy bonus seekers in the banking sector who appear to be able to continue their bad habits regardless that their jobs were saved by taxpayers money. The fact we are £805 billions in debt is the sole responsibility of the UK banks. The banks must be made to pay back every penny they have gobbled up and no one should be given a penny in bonuses.

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Eric Joyce resigns from Brown’s government.

September 3, 2009 Leave a comment

Channel 4 News has released a copy of a resignation letter issued by the parliamentary private secretary to the defence secretary Eric Joyce. Clearly this will be a blow to Brown’s conduct of the war in Afghanistan. Eric Joyce rightly criticises government policy for failing to do its duty towards our military personnel.

Gordon

As you may know, I told Bob Ainsworth some weeks ago that I intended to step down as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to the Defence Secretary before the start of the new parliamentary term. This seems to me the least disruptive time to do that. I have been privileged to work as PPS to four senior Labour ministers in four government departments and now feel that I can make my best contribution to the Labour effort in parliament by concentrating on helping, as a regular back-bencher, to show that Labour remains sound on matters of Defence.

Labour was returned to power in 1997 on the back of your great success in turning the Economy from a weakness into a strength for Labour. Our continuing success in helping people from all parts of society become more prosperous, while helping the least well-off most, is built upon that. More quietly, during the 90’s, Labour’s then shadow defence team showed how Labour had become, after the disaster of the early 1980s, ‘sound’ on Defence. It seems to me that your personal success on the economy won the deal in 1997, while colleagues at Defence sealed it.

We are now, I think, once again at a critical time for Labour and Defence. The Conservatives, of course opportunistically, think they can convince the public that we have lost our empathy with the Defence community. We must not allow this to happen. I know that you have great commitment to our armed forces and this was clear when you visited Afghanistan this week, yet there seem to me to be some problems which need fixing with the greatest urgency.

As you know, two Black Watch soldiers gave their lives during your visit. I do not think the public will accept for much longer that our losses can be justified by simply referring to the risk of greater terrorism on our streets. Nor do I think we can continue with the present level of uncertainty about the future of our deployment in Afghanistan.

I think we must be much more direct about the reality that we do punch a long way above our weight, that many of our allies do far too little, and that leaving the field to the United States would mean the end of NATO as a meaningful proposition. The British people have a proud history of facing such realities. They understand the importance of the allied effort in Afghanistan/Pakistan and I think they would appreciate more direct approach by politicians. We also need to make it clear that our commitment in Afghanistan is high but time limited. It should be possible now to say that we will move off our present war-footing and reduce our forces there substantially during our next term in government.

We also need a greater geopolitical return from the United States for our efforts. For many, Britain fights; Germany pays, France calculates; Italy avoids. If the United States values each of these approaches equally, they will end up shouldering the burden by themselves. The first place to start is an acceptance this week by them, and by the Afghanistan electoral authorities, that there must be a second round in the elections there. I do not think the British people will support the physical risk to our servicemen and women unless they can be given confidence that Afghanistan’s government has been properly elected and has a clear intent to deal with the corruption there which has continued unabated in recent years.

Most important of all, we must make it clear to every serviceman and woman, their families and the British public that we give their well-being the highest political priority. Behind the hand attacks by any Labour figure on senior service personnel are now, to the public, indistinguishable from attacks on the services themselves. Conversely, in my view we should allow our service personnel greater latitude to voice their views on matters which make distinctions between defence and politics pointless.

I believe the next election is ours to win, thanks greatly to your personal great economic success. But we cannot win unless we grip defence. Above all, Labour must remember that service folk and their families are our people. We say that we honour them for their risk, bravery and sacrifice and we must at literally all costs continue to show by our actions that we mean it.

I intend to do what modest amount I can to help from the back-benches.

Yours sincerely

Eric Joyce MP”

NHS advised to lose one in 10 workers-Society-The Guardian

September 3, 2009 Leave a comment

Why on earth was the NHS allowed to hire a bunch of costly consultants to produce a review of the NHS promoting job cuts?  How come the ministry could not intervene then to halt this project?

THE GUARDIAN: “The NHS will have to shed around 137,000 jobs – almost a tenth of its workforce – if it is to meet planned efficiency savings of £20bn, the Department of Health has been warned.The severity of cutbacks needed by 2014 was contained in advice presented by management consultants McKinsey to the government this spring.The content of the document, obtained by the Health Service Journal, was not disputed today but the health minister Mike OBrien insisted the government had already rejected the proposal.He said: “In core frontline services, like maternity, nursing and primary care, we need more staff rather than fewer.”Attempting to distance themselves from the report, ministerial sources suggested the review had been commissioned without full ministerial authority…”

Lockerbie, al-Megrahi, MacAskill & Gaddafi.

August 21, 2009 Leave a comment
LOCKERBIE, UNITED KINGDOM - DECEMBER 17:  A me...
Image by Getty Images via Daylife

This is difficult, Has Cameron got a point, are we bending over backwards to dance to Gaddafi’s tune? I know there is some controversy over this issue but we usually expect terrorists to claim a triumph in terrorist outrages the strange thing is if there were others they have remained remarkably silent so we could asumme that Megrahi is guilty.  Nick Robinson discuses the impact of this most strange decision that an SNP government minister has apparently taken.

If we are going to begin to sup with the devil then that spoon is going have to be very, very long!

David Cameron: “I think this is wrong and it’s the product of some completely nonsensical thinking in my view. If there’s a view that the conviction is in some way unsafe, then the proper process is an appeal and the presentation of new evidence. But if this is about genuine release on compassionate grounds I think it is wrong. This man was convicted of murdering 270 people. He showed no compassion to them. They weren’t allowed to go home and die with their relatives in their own bed and I think this is a very bad decision.”..”

via BBC – Nick Robinson’s Newslog.

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Bloggers debate British healthcare

August 14, 2009 2 comments

US rightwingnuts continue to get all excited about the imagined, impending doom of private health insurance which of course is complete bunkum. One has to ask questions about the sanity of these idiots who increase their own blood pressure in their frenzy attacks on President Obama.

BBC NEWS: “As the US healthcare debate hots up during Congress’s summer recess, anti-reform campaigners have been directing criticisms across the Atlantic at the UK healthcare system.

The most recent row erupted after an editorial at the Investors Business Daily (IBD) launched an attack on the British National Health Service (NHS), as a warning against what could happen if the US adopted such a model…”

via BBC NEWS | World | Americas | Bloggers debate British healthcare.

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NHS attack by MEP ‘unpatriotic’

August 14, 2009 Leave a comment

I agree, although Hannan is entitled to an opinion what he does not realize is he is running our country and our great institutions of which the NHS is one, down and dangerously makes him unpatriotic.

BBC NEWS: “Health Secretary Andy Burnham has accused a Tory MEP who attacked the NHS on American TV of being “unpatriotic”.Labour has stepped up its criticism of Daniel Hannan, with John Prescott recording a YouTube message to the American people defending the NHS.Tory leader David Cameron has insisted the NHS is his “number one priority” and dismissed Mr Hannan as “eccentric”. ..”

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more about “NHS attack by MEP ‘unpatriotic’“, posted with vodpod

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Daniel Hannan rebuked by Conservative leadership for attacking NHS – Telegraph

August 14, 2009 Leave a comment

Danniel Hannan is known for making outrageous comments, in the US he has become the favourite TV boy for Fox News in its quest to folloow an anti-Obama agenda. Hannan has a right to an opinion but he is wrong, totally wrong to peddle inaccurate and uniformed statements about our National Health Service.  US health care is more costly than our NHS and some 50 million have no access in the US for health care.  US rightwingnuts live in fear and that fear is totally irrational what Obama wants to do is extend health care to the population as a whole but retaining private medicine and adding extra state insurance.  US healthcare is poorer than the quality provided here and even Cuba has better health care than the US.

James Kirkup in THE TELEGRAPH: “David Cameron, the Conservative leader, said Mr Hannan was wrong in his criticism of the NHS. Andrew Lansley, the Conservative shadow health secretary, accused the MEP of presenting a “negative and partial” view of the NHS in his contribution to the US debate about health care. Cameron should remove the Tory whip from Hannan.

Conservative US Republicans opposed to President Barack Obama’s health care plans have used the NHS as an example of “socialised” medicine…”

via Daniel Hannan rebuked by Conservative leadership for attacking NHS – Telegraph.

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