Friday, 31 December 2010

Thomas Sowell - In the Right Direction

I am moving around all over the place at the moment because of the holidays, but blogging will return to (what counts as) normality in 2011.  So I would like to take this opportunity to wish all my readers a very Happy New Year, and to say thank you for your ever increasing support throughout 2010!

So until 2011 rolls around, I leave you with a very cool TV show on one of my favourite economists - Thomas Sowell.  If you have never read any of Sowell's works, it might prove a very good New Years Resolution to make!

Sunday, 26 December 2010

"Principles? We Don't Need No Stinkin' Principles" says Senior Tory Minister

Well, I had a day off from all news stories yesterday, choosing instead to enjoy the festivities with my family and to play around with my new Kindle.  Today I woke up very relaxed, turned on my PC, checked the stories on the Daily Telegraph and immediately my blood pressure hit the roof - back to business as usual here at the Anglo-American Debate then!

Today's story is not a complete surprise, and is from an unnamed source (and so needs to be taken with a pinch of salt) but it does show how the end of the Conservative Party in Great Britain as we know it is a very real possibility, and true conservatives who want their party to represent real conservative values as opposed to some fuzzy liberal-left consensus should be very worried indeed!

In short, the story (found here) from the Daily Telegraph, reveals that a "senior Conservative minister" has backed proposals to field "coalition" candidates at the next election.  To clarify, this would mean that the Tories and the Lib Dems would get together and decide upon a candidate that they could both agree upon to run under the banner of "Coalition candidate."

Of course this is absolutely ideal for the left-wing of the Tory Party (a scandal that such a thing even exists) who can select the most left-wing candidate that they like, a candidate who has as much to do with conservatism as I do with the Trotskyites, and then when questioned on it can turn around and say "Oh, well we needed to in order to satiate the Liberal Democrats."  It gives them the perfect excuse to make a permanent coalition with the Liberal Democrats (after all, which party would the coalition candidates actually belong to?), meaning that they could drag the Tories away from the Right, and into the arms of a centre-left coalition with the Lib-Dems.

I can see exactly what a "Coalition" candidate would be - some trendy Cameroon trained in media relations and spin who would stand for "fairness", "equality" and "a new way of doing politics in the 21st Century."  Great...

Such a decision would be a disaster for the right-wing of the Tory Party, of which I am a part, and needs to be prevented at all costs.  The Party is already too far left as it is, and to unite with the Lib Dems would mean little more than a complete rejection of all conservative principles in order to solidify power in the short term.  But voters are not stupid, they would be able to see this for what it is.  They would know that the Conservatives would no longer stand for anything.  It isn't "compromise" or "dialogue" or any of the other fuzzy words that weirdo like Ken Clarke (who I would propose is the "senior Tory Minister" that has approved this) - instead it is a cynical ploy for power, and proves once and for all that the present Tory Party is just a party that will say anything in order to achieve short term power.


This is not what voters want, and will turn people off politics, and will throw them into the arms of Labour on one hand, or UKIP on the other.  While I have no inherent problem with UKIP, I do not believe in splitting the right-wing vote.  In order to win, the right-wing need to unite under one party, ideally the Tories.  But making a permanent principle-less coalition with the Lib Dems will force many of the right-wing of the party out, and will force a split.  While in the long term this may lead to the establishment of UKIP as a major political force (it would certainly be where I would begin to drift) in the short term it would be an absolute disaster.  The left-wing of the Liberal Democrats are already beginning to migrate to the swelling ranks of the Labour Party, the right of the Tories would drift to UKIP, and it would leave a starved Coalition and hand the next election (whenever that may be) to Labour.

Ed Miliband cannot win an election on his own, but if this tasteless coalition continues, then the Tories could very easily lose it, and Miliband may find himself handed the next election by a Tory Party determined to abandon its principles and self destruct at all costs.  The prospect of Prime Minister Miliband should spur the right wing of the Tory Party into action and to reclaim the party from nutjobs such as Ken Clarke - who are determined to continue this marriage of inconvenience with the Liberal Democrats.

It is time to stop the madness.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Merry Christmas to the Right, Happy Winterval to the Left!

I want to wish all of my readers a very Happy Christmas, whatever their political viewpoints!  As for the whole "War on Christmas", I don't really bother with it - I celebrate Christmas and if other people do not want to, then that is up to them.  But I do want to link to this video, as I find it particularly funny!

Everyone all together "DI-VERS-IT-YYYYYY"  :-)

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Katharine Birbalsingh Exposes the State of British Education

I want to give a heads up to Katharine Birbalsingh.  If you do not know who Katharine Birbalsingh is, she is a former deputy head in inner city London, who having seen the dreadful state of state school education, slowly became more and more convinced of the right's position on education, until eventually she gave a major speech at this year's Conservative Party Conference that sent shockwaves throughout the education community.

The speech is a devastating indictment of the way British state school system is planned by those well meaning politicians in Westminster, and has consequently provoked hatred and anger from the voices of the powerful, institutionalised left.  In addition to her speech, it is well worth taking a look at her blog for the Daily Telegraph which details the reactions she is getting from various people (teachers, parents and children) who are connected to the state education system.  Take a look!


Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Cable - "I Can Bring Down the Government" - SACK HIM!

The big news coming from the British press this morning is the secretly taped conversations with Business Secretary Vince Cable.  In the conversations (which are actually more like one-sided rants from Cable), The Lib Dem shoots his mouth off to a bunch of people who he thought were Liberal Democrat supporters (but who were actually journalists), and tells them that he has "the nuclear option" whereby if he was pushed to do something he didn't like then he could "bring down the government."  Good one Vince you blithering idiot!

Vince Cable is easily one of the most odious men in politics.  His views are absolutely hard-left and out of the socialist playbook, and the fact that he has managed to get himself the position of Business Secretary in a government that is made predominately of Conservatives is disgraceful.  Yet this shows him up for who he really he is.  He isn't just a socialist - he is a power nut to boot.  In the context of the conversations, Cable is not telling his "supporters" about how the government works, but is simply bragging about how much power he has.

The incident shows that he has no qualms about slagging off the government of which he is a major part either.  He had met these people for the first time, and already he is slagging off the Tories, and how they are going to break their promises in the future, and how he doesn't trust a single one of them.  It raises the question - what would he have said to them the next time they met?

Ultimately though this is a question of power, and Cable's love for it.  Vince Cable is all about power.  All the lefty rhetoric that he spouts about punishing banks, taxing  and beating up bankers is all about transferring power over economic matters away from the banks and into his office.  Cable is a classic statist, and sees himself as the ideal man to run such a large statist economy. There is certainly the usual anti-business mentality present in Vince Cable, but it is power that this man really seeks.  No policy he has ever promoted has ever been about anything other than taking power away from private individuals and organisations, and handing that power over to the State.  He should never have been allowed to even get a sniff of government, and to make him Business Secretary was obscene.  Consequently, we are now facing the consequences of that extraordinarily misguided decision by the Prime Minister.

So, can Cable bring down the government?  In short, no - he is a moron who thinks way too highly of himself, as most statists do.  What he is though is a dangerous moron, and if he is allowed to continue being a moron, and advancing such ridiculous policies like taxing the banks out of existence, then he could  be a danger in the future.  It is for this reason that Cameron and Clegg should demand his resignation before the year is out.  Let's start 2011 Cable-free!

Monday, 20 December 2010

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Repealed - The Brits Lead the Way.

With "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" now repealed, there is a pressing need for new military drills to be implemented that are more inclusive.  Luckily the British Army prepared for this situation many years ago, and has lent the Americans their comprehensive training video.  (Just a little joke!) :-)

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Left Wing Media Fawning Over Assange

Over the last few months, I have been fascinated by the different ways Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been treated by various parts of society, especially the media.  Obviously the hard left see him as a sort of hero or visionary - as they do to anyone who does significant damage to America and its allies.  That was always to be expected.  The same people who were "shocked" and "appalled" by the leak of the Climategate emails have no problem with sensitive aspects of national security being plastered across newspapers all around the world and on the internet.  But anything that harms America is good for these people, so this should surprise nobody.

Yet even some of the more moderate voices in the media seem to be swayed by Assange, and are not treating him for what he is - a cyberterrorist - but instead as a legitimate contributor to American political discourse.    We have seen this not only in the decisions by newspapers like The Guardian and The New York Times to publish the leaked files released by Wikileaks, but also in the attitude that many journalists have shown towards Wikileaks and its founder. Take a look at the video of this interview between Assange and ABC news reporter Jim Sciutto.

Sciutto begins to probe Assange about the rape allegations that he is facing, and that are making the international news.  Sciutto does not imply anything, but simply asks Assange to clarify what he meant when he described the rape accusations he is facing as little more than a hit job.  It seems like a pretty obvious question, and is actually a pretty easy one in comparison to some of the questions many of us would like to ask Mr Assange.  Yet Assange walks out on Sciutto.  Again, this is no surprise, we are used to Assange walking out of interviews when he doesn't like a question - he has done it many times before, most notably to a CNN reporter a few months ago.  The standards of "honesty" and "transparency" that he sets up for the US government apparently do not apply to him.

Yet what is interesting is Sciutto's response.  As Assange is taking his microphone off, Sciutto scuttles up to him and then proceeds to grovel to the leader of the group that has put thousands of American lives at risk time and time again, and stutters,  "I...I...I meant no insult by it...."

Two thoughts immediately occurred to me.  The first was that Julian Assange was being treated like he was the President or a foreign dignitary, and not the head of an international anarcho-terrorist group.  The second thought was more of a question - would Sciutto would have run after Sarah Palin, or Rush Limbaugh, or any Republican figure like that if they had walked off his show?  Probably not.  He would have probably been lauded by his colleagues for "asking the tough questions" and then given some journalistic prize for "services to democracy and accountability" or some other such nonsense.  Instead, because it is Assange, who seems to command this weird sort of respect from even the moderate of left-wing news media, Sciutto panics and feels compelled to apologize for making one of the major security risks to the Western world feel slightly uncomfortable in an interview.

Such an incident didn't anger me, instead I found it interesting.  For there is certainly a complex relationship between Assange and the left-wing media.  I don't believe that the media genuinely like what Wikileaks is doing, but there does seem to be a sense in which they identify him as "one of ours" and consequently they are uncertain as to whether or not they should condemn him, as if doing so would somehow harm their own rights as journalists.

This does cause significant problems.  We need to be able to define clearly who the good guys and the bad guys are here.  There is nothing heroic, or liberty loving to do with Wikileaks, nor does it have anything to do with "journalistic integrity."  If we have a mainstream media that can't fully understand that, and treats Wikileaks' founder like he is some sort of major celebrity or politician, then there is a real problem, and it is going to make bringing cyberterrorists like Assange to justice very difficult if our media can't quite work out if they have done anything wrong!

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Britain's Left Are Panicking

My latest article in The American Thinker has been published and focuses upon the left-wing student riots. The article argues that increasing tuition fees threatens the left's hold over the University system in Britain, and therefore represents a real threat to their agenda.  It is for this reason that we have seen so much venom towards the government proposals.

As a PS, I should make reference to a criticism of the article that has popped up a few times  - that is that I am naive for believing that a small hike will remove the left-wing problem in universities.  This is not what the article is saying at all.  I am not saying that this will remove the problem, but that it will weaken the left's grip, as it will dissuade disinterested students not to come, and will result in students demanding greater quality from their lecturers.  As fees go up, as will quality.  That is all I am arguing, not that this latest hike has solved the many, many problems of the British university.  I hope this helps!

Monday, 13 December 2010

Sweden's Close Shave

Those of us who believe in God will be thanking Him that the Swedish terror attempt failed spectacularly.  With the only person killed being the suicide bomber, it is amazing that these two bombs that triggered didn't kill anyone.  Two bombs in Stockholm during Christmas time could have had devastating results.

However, the fact that Sweden was targeted emphasises the flaw in the left's logic when it comes to terrorism and the roots of terror.  As I pointed out in an article last month for The American Thinker, the left's narrative on terror is that terrorism is an exaggerated (but understandable) response to the evil, imperialistic, right-wing policies of America and Britain - policies epitomised in the foreign policy of Dick Cheney and George W. Bush.  If only we would listen to the left, and abandon our evil foreign policies, and just roll over, then the Islamists would leave us alone and all would be fine - they would leave us alone.  It is for this reason, they claim, that America and Britain are the main targets of Islamic anger.

The attempted attacks on Sweden once again blow this theory out of the water, especially when one considers that Sweden is one of the most socialist country in Europe, and is often heralded by the left as the closest thing in existence to a socialist paradise.

Threats have been made not only against Sweden, but also against Germany, France, Belgium and Italy.  Out of those, only Germany could be said to be a significant ally of America in the War of Terror.  Sweden did send troops to Afghanistan, but the number of troops is relatively limited.  Although the media is trying to place emphasis on this factor, the bomber himself indicated that it had less to do with the support for the war in Afghanistan, and more to do with their silence over one of the (many) cartoon/Mohammed controversies.

Yes that's right, you read that correctly.  Sweden was made a target, not because it did anything, but because it didn't condemn the cartoons that were drawn in another country.  This indicates something else about how wrong the left's understanding of the terrorist threat really is.  Islamic extremists won't just leave us alone if we do nothing wrong, instead they demand that we conform with and support their agenda as well.  Their aim is conquest, not neutrality.  Radical Islamists say that we must submit to them or we will automatically be targeted - that is their offer.

The Sweden attacks show that such people cannot be bargained with - as the left wish to do.  The only option is to root these people out and destroy them - this is the option that the right offers, and it is the only option that makes sense.  Let us hope that this awakens people to the threat that confronts us, and the true reality of the situation.  This was a close call, we need to make sure it doesn't happen again, as next time we might not be so lucky.

Friday, 10 December 2010

"Pay For My Own Education? Tory Scum!!"

First of all, apologies for the lack of posts last week - I have been travelling back to England, and have been trying to shake off the jet lag since I arrived.  Good to be home though!  :-)

The obvious news for this week is the riots by British students on the day of the tuition fee vote.  The Bill to raise the cap on university fees from £3,000 to £6,000 a year passed.....just.  Yet the day was marked by a series of "protests" by left wing students determined to present themselves as socialists who are "protesting for the common man."  By the end of the day the protests looked less and less like protests and more and more like a full blown riot.  It was a riot that ended with enormous amounts of damage to the city of London, and even in the royal car carrying Prince Charles and Camilla being attacked.

There are some great articles out there covering the story, and I wouldn't want to retread some of the old points that so many good writers have made.  However, I did want to look at this claim by these students that they are somehow taking part in a socialist revolution on behalf of the working man.

That they are socialists is not up for debate.  The way such student bodies almost always end up paying lip service to Marx, Trostsky, Chomsky et al, and wear Che Guevara T-shirts and wave communist flags prove as much.  However, the idea that they are standing up for the "worker" or the "common man" is completely nonsensical, and the opposite is actually true.

The debate has been caught up in soundbites about "free education" and the "right to higher education."  However, the debate is not about that at all, but instead it is about one question (so important that I will highlight it in bold...)

Who should bear the brunt of the cost for a student's university education?

The socialist, if forced to answer this question, will answer that it should be the State.  Yet this answer is erroneous.  The State does not pay for anything, it only channels funds that it has already received. It has received those funds from the taxpayer.  Now, while some of those taxpayers are the "evil bankers" and the "exploitative rich corporations", many taxpayers are normal, working class people trying to make ends meet on a a daily basis - workers who the socialist students claim to be fighting for.

Therefore by arguing for "free" (by which they mean subsidised) education, the student left are simply insisting that other people, many of whom will earn less than the majority of students will eventually earn, pay for their education.  Therefore, they are arguing for a situation in which milkmen, farmers, dinner ladies and plumbers bear the cost of the university education of future lawyers, bankers and executives.  How this is "fair" is beyond me, and how it is "fighting for workers" is even harder for me to understand!

Lifting the cap is a basic statement that says that students should bear a greater share of the cost of their own higher education, an education from which it is they who will primarily benefit.  If students are unable to pay immediately, then it is important to have an accompanying loan system that works and does not add interests to their debt.  However, forcing people (most of whom are struggling to make ends meet as it is) to pay for the higher education of others is not fair, is not just, and it is certainly not in in the interest of the "working masses." 

If students wants to try and convince the public to subsidise their educations then fair play to them, but they should not pretend that it is done for anyone's interests other than their own.



Sunday, 5 December 2010

Can We Stop START?? (And Other Tiresome Puns)

If American political commentators were various forms of weapons, Charles Krauthammer would be a drone missile - for every single one of his articles seem to get right to the heart of the matter and obliterates opposing arguments in a single swoop.

His latest article is on the ridiculous START treaty, which seeks to limit the number of nuclear weapons that both the US and Russia possess - the idea being that this will make the world safer as not only does it mean there are less nukes, but that it might also encourage Iran and North Korea to stop playing with nuclear weapons too.  These two arguments are nonsensical, and it one wouldn't be surprised if Mr Obama came out and say "You can't hug your children with nuclear arms!"

As Krauthammer points out, it isn't necessarily the symbolism of START which is problematic, but instead more worrying is Obama's ultimate aim that there are no nuclear weapons in existence.  This is completely idiotic for two reasons.

The first is that even if this dream were able to be achieved, this would leave us at an enormous disadvantage against Russia.  The reason the Soviets were so in favour of nuclear disarmament in the 70's and 80's wasn't because they were all peace loving hippy types, but because nuclear weapons were the only area that the United States could beat the Soviets with.  When it came to military numbers, tanks, planes etc, the Russians were well ahead of the game, due to their industrial capabilities and their enormous population which meant they had manpower for both industry and for the army.  If the Cold War had been fought only on the ground,
the Soviets would have won every day of the week!  It was only because the US had advanced nuclear weapons that prevented to Soviets from attacking.  Now, although Soviet Russia no longer exists and modern day Russia is less and less of a threat, it would still be folly to remove that strategic advantage that America has.  Getting Russia to get rid of theirs is irrelevant, as nukes aren't their strength!

Second of all, there is no such thing as a nuclear free world, and if Russia and America abolished their nukes, it would mean that the whole world could be held hostage by the one country that did manage to sneak out a weapon.  Why Obama believes that America not having weapons would do anything but encourage rogue nations to gather nukes is beyond me!   Without America having nukes, it would only remove the deterrent that currently stops smaller nations developing nukes themselves.

START also brings the revisionist history of the Cold War that the left have tried to tell into focus.  The fact is that we won the Cold War by having greater numbers of more powerful nukes and better defences than the Soviets did.  Reagan's plan (that the left hated) worked, and yet we are told that it didn't and that somehow the CND movement that pervaded the 80's were right, when they were in fact wrong.  Until now this has not mattered a great deal, but now we have a President in the White House who buys into this nonsense, and this should worry us.

It is up to the Republicans to put a spanner in the works of this treaty in 2011, or the world will be a less safe place as a result.  To fall back on the obvious pun - it is time to put a stop to START.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

President Bush's Challenge to Great Britain

Although it is based generally on a post I made a few weeks ago, my latest article in the American Thinker is out, and focuses on George W Bush's claims that waterboarding saved British lives.  It argues that it is about time that people in both Britain and America make a genuine decision about what they are prepared to accept in order to save the lives of innocent civilians.

The article can be found here.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Wikileaks......really?

Is it me or does anyone else not see the fuss about these latest so called Wikileaks??

Don't get me wrong, I have had many bad words to say about Wikileaks in the past, with their leaks on the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts that put many people in immediate danger as a result.  However, these latest ones don't seem particularly surprising or revealing.  I read through many of them and was not surprised by a single revelation.  Pakistan has a worry amount of nukes.  Yeh??  North Korea could collapse and China could back off.  No!!  US officials don't like Mugabe or Ahmadinejad - say it isn't so!

I honestly believe that in the long term these leaks won't go down in history for anything except for the sheer quantity of documents that have been leaked, which is certainly worrying.  However, apart from various diplomatic feathers being ruffled, I don't really see this as much more than a storm in a teacup.  One quick caveat to that though - not everything has been released yet, so there could be some big bombshells around the corner. If that is so, lets hope that officials can track down that weirdo Assange and co before they do any more damage.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Miliband: "I am a Socialist" - Told you....

If you want to hear Labour leader Ed Miliband get torn to pieces, have a listen to the interview with John Humphrys on the Today show here.

Full of snivelling soundbites about how Miliband believes in "fairness" and is pained by "inequality", Humphrys responds by asking about specifics, and Miliband falls to pieces.  Why is this?  The answer lies in an earlier interview during the day when he admitted that yes indeedy, he is a socialist!

Now, this won't come as a surprise to many of us who have known this all along, but there may be some in the general public who hear this and are alerted.  I hope so, because Miliband is already trying to turn the political climate back into an era of soundbites and catchphrases like "everyone doing their bit" and "helping each other out" and "reducing inequality" and of course Ed's favourite - "committed to fairness."

These can of course mean anything to anyone, that is the whole point.  However, once it gets out that Red Ed is quite happy to call himself a socialist, we can instantly see what policies come from his interpretation of these catchphrases.

So "everyone doing their bit" means "the rich and middle class pay more taxes"

"Helping each other out" means "expand the role and size of government."

"Reducing inequality" means "enormous welfare handouts"

"Committed to fairness" means "make sure no-one does too well in life."

Once people realise that these inoffensive slogans lead to these offensive policies, then Labour will sink back into the wilderness for as long as it takes for them to grow out of it.  However it is important that it is exposed just how left-wing this guy is, how radical he and his party's policies really are once we get over the fluff that they are wrapped in, and what a disaster such policies have been and will be for the country.

Luckily Ed appears to be doing that for us.  Although he has generally kept quiet since his election, and does his very best not to actually discuss policy, when he is drawn out into the open, he is quite happy to admit that he is a high-tax, big government redistributionist socialist.  This can only be a good thing for conservatives in Britain - if we can keep drawing him out into the open, Labour won't win a thing.
and

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

The Royal Couple Checkmate the Left

After the Royal Wedding was announced last week, we saw lots of hand wringing by those on the left, "anxious" about "excessive" expense on the upcoming Wedding  in a time where welfare and the power of government is being cut.  "We couldn't have that" said they, "It should be simple" they pined.

Of course, this was really about the left's distaste for those principles that the monarchy stand for.  In attempting to "draw attention" to these issues and politicise the wedding, they were attempting to hijack the happy day for William and Kate in order to push forward their own political ends.  However, it has now been completely wrecked.

It has been reported today that not only have Prince William and Miss Middleton set the date, but that (apart from security and clean up) the Royals and the Middleton's will be footing the entire bill.  Although I am sure that there will be some who attempt to claim this as a victory, this is actually a stunning checkmate for the Royals, and a disastrous defeat for the left.  This is because the left can no longer have any axe to grind about the whole thing.

The wedding was being set up by the left-wing media to be an horrific display of "pomp and privilege", to be contrasted with pictures of the Dickensian nightmare that we are told haunts Britain, all because "the rich" are too mean and stingy to give more than half their income to the taxman.  It was through this that the left would try and turn this happy day into a political canvassing opportunity for their cause, a cause that would result in the abolishment of the last checks and balances of state power and an even greater concentration of power into our State machine.

Now, they are going to have to regroup, and they will have to do it quickly, as this is quickly turning into the Monarchy's finest hour.  The Wedding will put Britain on the map once again, it could stimulate the economy by billions in the short term, and will increase tourism to Britain in the medium to long term.  It will make Brits proud of their country, proud of their traditions, and will inject both a patriotism and a religiosity into the British public at large that has not been seen for a very long time.

Do not underestimate this.  This is Defcon 1 for the British left.  They will try and attack this wedding with everything they have, but at the moment they have nothing.  Let us hope that it stays this way.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Congratulations Prince William and Kate Middleton!

First, Congratulations are in order for Prince William and his new fiancĂ©e Kate Middleton.  Most people have a fondness for Prince William, and Miss Middleton seems like a lovely woman, so this is a great time to be a Brit.  
It is also something that is necessary for the country as a whole.  It has been a while since there has been anything to get really excited about in Britain - the last election wasn't exactly a thrill a minute, and so this provides a much needed boost to Britain as a nation. It also reminds us of what we stand for, apart from the fluffy buzzwords of the left - "Oooh Britain is all about tolerance and diversity....."

Of course, the left are miserable about the royal wedding.  Certainly, there will have to be a carefulness about the wedding and where the money will come from - after all it would look a tad odd to be having an overly-lavish wedding during a time of cut backs and job losses.  However, in typical leftish fashion, they are pushing a decent point way too far.  This is because they have a very narrow vision of what public money should be spent on - unions and welfare mostly.  If it doesn't give the State more power, then it is a total waste of money.  Therefore under the banner of "fiscal responsibility" (giggle, snort) they are fighting tooth and nail against this wedding, or at least trying to make everyone feel guilty about it in the process.

The line the left are playing is "How dare you spend all this money of these horrible wealthy rich people, when there are so many poor starving in the Dickensian nightmare that is Tory Britain."  Ok, I exaggerate, but only slightly!  Expect rags like the Guardian and the Mirror to be making snide remarks about lavish wedding dresses in contrast to those who can "barely afford to buy clothes at all."  The implied notion is that we shouldn't have this wedding at all, and should instead throw yet more money into the bloated welfare state.

The problem for the left is that there are already lots of reports coming through that this wedding will easily beat its cost in terms of the stimulus that it will create.  One retailer has predicted that while the wedding will cost in the region of £50 million (small change by government standards), it will boost the economy by at least £620 million.  This will be done through the gifts and souvenirs, through food and drink purchases for various parties and celebrations, and through a boost in the tourist industry as well as Britain's standing abroad.

This will be an international event that will put Britain at the centre of the world, at least for a month or so, which is something that Britain has been lacking since it has been crippled by the lefties determined to turn us once again into a socialist state.  This is a real opportunity to give Britain a proper stimulus, as opposed to all those phoney slush funds we have been seeing on both sides of the Atlantic.

It will improve Britain's standing, improve Britain's economy, and give the British people a pride of their nation once again.  These are all things that the leftists will find difficult to put up with, so expect an onslaught of anti-monarchist sentiment to rise up through the lefty blogs and papers over the next six or so months.  It is important that we do not let these people spoil what could be an exceptional moment for our country!

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Thomas Sowell - Economic Facts and Fallacies

I know it is slightly lazy blogging to post a video, but I do like to link to videos that I see as valuable in promoting the conservative movement, so I am going to do it anyway!

One of the authors I continually recommend is Thomas Sowell.  Originally a Marxist, he eventually had a dramatic conversion to free market capitalism, and has written countless books on economics since then.  I would argue that he is the true heir to Milton Friedman, he really is that good.  If ever you can pick up his books or listen to him speak, please do.  He is well worth it.

The link I post below is a discussion he had on Uncommon Knowledge a few years ago about his book Economic Facts and Fallacies.  So, fix up a cup of coffee, sit bak and enjoy this entertaining, and valuable, discussion!  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Lefty British Students Engage in Mass Tantrum

Well, we knew this was coming!  We had watched the French descend into chaos over the decision to extend the retirement age by a year, so when the Coalition engaged in spending cuts, it was likely that at least one group was going to start kicking up the place.  Every now and again there will be a G8/G20 etc conference, and a "minority" (a word always used when it is leftists being violent) of protestors start destroying buildings, throwing bins through McDonalds in addition to the usual whining, so another left-wing attack on private property was inevitable.

Yesterday was the day.  A student protest at the possibility of raising the cap for university fees from approximately £3,000 to £9,000 (that's right my American friends, British students are bitching at having to possibly pay $12,000 a year for University, that is how spoilt we are) quickly turned violent.  Police, who have been criticised by all sort of victims groups for their "harsh" treatment of rioters in previous protests, decided (understandably) not to step in, and Tory HQ was destroyed by a relatively small mob (I say relatively, it was still well over 500 people), but a small mob who was being cheered by a large amount of people nearby.

Obviously this is completely obscene.  The police should have had the ability to wade in, tear gas the entire place and start swinging batons.  They have a duty to defend those people who wish to go about their daily business without being attacked by a bunch of middle class communists.  However, Britain has completely castrated its police, so we have only ourselves to blame that it ended up being police officers who were being carried out bleeding and injured, and not the ones causing the trouble.

However, what is the most interesting thing about this is how the protesters and rioters view themselves.  They seem to think of themselves as some sort of freedom fighters, fighting for the "rights" of their fellow students, and for freedom against "the tyranny".  However, they are quite the opposite.  In their claim for "free education", they are not arguing for any such thing.  There is no free education, the only question is who bears the brunt of the cost - those who receive the education and the primary benefits, or those who do not receive the education, and who might only possibly receive some sort of secondary benefit?

All conservatives are asking is that people bear the cost of their own education.  They make the decision to do something, therefore they must pay for it.  If they cannot afford to, then there are a number of ways to get round this, from loans to bursaries to part time jobs and part time studying.  The question is ultimately not one of "How much should education cost?" because the price does not change - the only question is "Who pays for it?"

Conservatives want those who are making the free decision to go to University to bear the cost, while the leftists setting fire to things want taxpayers to be forced to pay for optional education for people who they do not know, and who may in fact be earning a lot more than those unfortunate taxpayers in the future.  So, who is really fighting for freedom from tyranny?  Conservatives are simply fighting for taxpayers to be allowed to do what they wish with their money, and not be forced to fund a bunch of people who will, at the first sign of an increase in fees, go and cause thousands of pounds worth of damage to public buildings.

Of course the ultimate irony is that if those students who took a day of from University to travel to London and trash private property chose instead to get a part-time job and work on those free days, then they would be in a much better position financially then they are currently!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Waterboarding Saved British Lives. Well...Yeh!

So, George W. Bush's latest book, Decision Points, is out and sure enough, much controversy abounds!  One of the main talking points (or decision points!) is Bush's claim that waterboarding resulted in vital information that prevented terrorist attacks upon Great Britain, and therefore saved British lives.

This has obviously caused enormous controversy, with many lefties (and a number of panicky conservatives) dismissing the claim, and stating that it doesn't really matter anyway as torture is completely unacceptable etc.  Now one of the difficult things about this is that the word 'torture' gets thrown about alot.  This is quite an emotive term, and is normally left undefined, which makes it impossible to have a proper debate about

If we give 'torture' a wide definition, and then declare 'torture = bad' then you end up with a ridiculous scenario where even giving a prisoner poor quality food is 'obscene' and 'abhorrent' and all the other emotive terms the left use to distract from arguments they always lose on the merits of the facts.  In order to condemn 'all torture', we need a very precise definition that does not lead to absurdities like the above, otherwise even banging on the table in anger would be classified as "torturing the suspect using fear and aggression."

This new revelation by Bush is perfectly easy to believe, and is pretty obvious as well.  One of the only three people to be waterboarded (by the way the left went on about it you would think we waterboarded all of Afghanistan) was the infamous right hand man to Osama Bin Laden - Khalid Sheik Mohammed - who eventually sang like a red robin, and gave away detailed information about potential terrorists attacks on Britain and the US.  While the exact nature of this information is classified, it can be revealed that these include plans to attack Heathrow Airport, Big Ben and Canary Wharf.  Such an attack would have caused unimaginable devastation, and all Brits should be thankful that we had someone like Bush in office who was prepared to make those difficult decisions that saved lives.

Now, we always have to look at costs and benefits to any action.  While the ends do not necessarily justify the means (i.e something intrinsically evil cannot be approved to get a good final end) unpleasant acts that are not intrinsically evil are made more bearable by potential benefits.  Waterboarding scumbags like Sheikh Mohammed are not intrinsically evil, because a) it is not torture, it is just water and b) Sheikh Mohammed is a direct and immediate threat to the lives of innocents.

Therefore the question is - what is more important, the lives of thousands of British citizens, or the comfort of the life of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed?  With that in mind, I think the answer to the question of whether or not to waterboard terrorist scumbags like Sheikh Mohammed is clear - make sure that towel is wet, the water icy cold, and squeeze the terrorist lemon until the pips squeak!

Saturday, 6 November 2010

"The West is Evil!!.....but I'll take their welfare...."

There are only very few Brits who I would describe as Anglo-American commentators.  I am one of course!  The other two whom I respect the most are Nile Gardiner - mentioned many times before on this blog, and the other is Daniel Hannan MEP.

Daniel has that excellent ability to squeak out issues that many other commentators have missed entirely, and then brutally nail that issue home, usually showing how ridiculous one leftist policy or another really is.  Sure enough, he has done the same today with an excellent article on the disproportionate amount of Islamic extremists who just happen to be claiming welfare in Britain.

Now, apart from the obvious outrage that always ensues when we find out that our taxes are going towards funding the families and lifestyles of people who would like nothing more than to kill our citizens and blow up our buildings, Hannan's point goes deeper and asks whether welfare dependency is in fact a contributive factor in the extremism we see in many young men in Britain.

Now, before my readers start getting upset, thinking that I have gone soft, I am not arguing that it is all our fault, and that terrorist are all just poor victims etc etc.  What I am arguing (and I believe Mr Hannan is as well although he does not say so specifically) is that Islamic terrorists and those who sympathise with them, before they attack anyone, first have to create a world of make believe for themselves.

This isn't just meant in a religious sense, but in the sense that they sit around with a false view of the world, completely separate from it, and have no interaction with the people that they hate so much.  Jobs, and more specifically integration into the capitalist system, helps to solve this problem.

By this I mean that it is much harder to hate "Western Civilisation" if you are a living, breathing part of it, or connected to it in some way.  So if you are an English Muslim who gets up every morning, prays, and then simply scowls at people who are on their way to work, it is a lot easier to convince yourself that they are the enemy.  However, if you are part of that group of people making the commute to work, you quickly realise that they are just trying to make it, and be self-sufficient.  Plus, it instills ambition - the idea that there are goals and aims that one might want to achieve in this life, not just the next.  The focus becomes on providing for one's loved ones, and for oneself, as opposed to simply sitting around hating people

This can be shown on a global scale as well.  Countries that become more globalised and enter into the capitalist system are generally more moderate than those that are not.  Vali Nasr is an excellent author on this issue (I have mentioned his name before) and he points to Turkey, which has much more moderate strains of Islam as opposed to places such as Iran.  The reason for this is that Iran has a boxed-in mentality of us vs them, hatred of everyone else who is not a fundamentalist.  However, Turkey  has entered into the capitalist system, and it is much harder to hate those who your are trading with.

All of a sudden it is not "The West" but various companies and individuals whom the country is buying and selling from.  Turkey and its citizens now have a mutual relationship and interest with people abroad, and destroying those other people would not help them.  Plus, capitalism always leads to financial stability and economic growth, two factors that are deadly to Islamic Fundamentalism.

So, while on the international scale we can work to push capitalist models in those extremist countries, and to encourage the growth of an Islamic middle class, we can also do that closer to home by ending welfare dependency.  The idea that we can essentially pay young British Muslims to stop holding radical ideas is nonsensical. These people need to integrate themeselves into the societies in which they live.  This will ultimately not be done by expensive government programs, schemes, and initiatives, but by forcing them to provide for themselves and their families.

The rise of an Islamic middle class both in Britain and internationally is nothing to fear, but this will not be created by pandering to nations like Iran, and handing out overly generous welfare payments to those at home who hate the country in which they live.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Cautiously Delighted about the Midterms

Is it possible to be cautiously delighted?  I'm not particularly sure but that is how I am feeling about last night's astounding win by the GOP in the House and Senate.  Although one might point to the fact that the Senate power didn't officially change hands, everything else is pretty much win-win.

As I said in my previous post as well, the Republicans essentially have power now in both houses, as the Dem side of the Senate now consists of a lot of either moderate, or scared Democrats.  They know that their necks are on the line, and if they vote as a bloc against repeal of healthcare, against tax cuts, or against spending cuts, then they will not be in the Senate after 2012.  A vote for Obama and against the GOP at the moment is electoral suicide, and they know it.  So I wouldn't expect too many problems as long as the GOP stick together in the Senate.  The House of course is about as red as it gets, and considering the Representatives have the power of the purse, we should be slowly saying goodbye to the era of big spending.

However, it is important not to get too excited just yet.  It is especially important not to underestimate Obama.  This guy has a lot of trick up his sleaves, and if you think that he is just going to roll over for the next two years, you have another thing coming.  This guy will play every card, use every tool at his disposal (including the media) to get the American public back on his side.

If the Republicans are not clear about everything they do, or if they abandon their principles, or if they get lazy, Obama will strike.  He might not turn it around by moving to the centre like Clinton, but he could turn it around in other ways that we might not be able to foresee right now.

Don't get me wrong, I am not overestimating Obama either.  The guy is NOT the wonderful, super-intelligent guy we have been told about.  He is a hard-left ideologue and ultimately that always comes back to haunt him.  I don't think that he will go back on his leftist principles by any stretch, but I do think that he will try and control the debate.  For instance, he will spend the next 6 months (trust me on this) saying that "Ok, well, if we want to reduce the deficit, we need much higher taxes!"

He will seek to control the debate, and it will be at this point when the GOP will need to jump in, shout just as loudly as Obama and say "NO!  That doesn't work" and explain why.  If it doesn't, then Obama will chip away at Republican support, both amongst the electorate, and in the House amongst the more 'moderate' Republicans.

The Republicans have the momentum, and unlike two years ago, 2012 is the Republicans to throw away.  If they do what they have promised, control the debate, and stick to their principles, 2012 will  be a success.  But if they implode, then Obama or another Democrat will take advantage, and we will be looking at another 4 years of socialism, instead of a fresh conservative new beginning in 2012.  Now is not the time to relax!

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Victory!

I'm very very tired after a long day!!  But this evening I have been involved in a great election party.  Needless to say I am delighted with the Republican victory.  The victory in the house is looking monumental and although we won't gain the Senate, it'll be so close that the Dems will need to have every last Democrat on board in order to block a bill - and I just don't think they will work as a bloc over the next two years!

Anyway, I'm going to bed, but I will blog in detail tomorrow when some more of the results come in.  Toomey is apparently a winner which is great news, but it looks like Angle will not beat Reid at this point.  Ah well, can't win them all!

Saturday, 30 October 2010

The Yemen Terror Plot

As more and more information is revealed, it is looking like this Yemen scare yesterday was some really serious stuff.  Initially it was perceived as a dry run, but now it is looking like there was some explosive devices on board these jets.

Therefore it is difficult to say that the attack "failed" in the traditional sense of the word - because when terrorists get explosives on to a plane, they have essentially succeeded in one sense.  They may not have succeeded in their ultimate motives, which was to blow up Jewish centres of worship, but they have succeeded to get explosives on jets, which is a real problem.

My intention in making this point is not to criticise intelligence, quite the opposite - they did a great job.  But it shows once again how important Anglo-American relations are.  The Chicago bound jet was stopped in London, plus an additional jet was stopped at East Midlands Airport in England.  Many flights from these extremist areas stop in some part of England to refuel and then move on to America.  If both British and American intelligence organisations are working together, then they can stop a great many of these attempts before they cause a problem.

Therefore, as voters prepare to enter the voting booth on Tuesday evening, they shouldn't discount the role that Anglo-American relations play in keeping both Britain and America safe.  They should therefore remember which party it is that has been putting Anglo-American relations on ice since they gained the Presidency in 2009.

The only way we can prevent a great deal of these attacks is by international collaboration.  While Obama et al may (rightly) be focusing to a large degree on keeping relations good with the government of Yemen, and the Pakistani authorities etc, he should also look closer to home, to the ally who he has been constantly rejecting since he became President.  His country's security depends on it.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Britain is Losing its Nerve

I told you this wouldn't last long.....

I predicted last week that the announced spending cuts would very quickly be challenged, and soon the government would fall to pieces over it.  In fairness to David Cameron, a week later he is still staying strong, but there are members of his party who are trickling off.  One of the more "controversial" announcements is that housing benefit is to be capped at £400 a week for a family of four.

Despite the fact that this amounts to over £20,000 a year of untaxed housing benefits, the left are still bitching.  Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee said last week that this amounts to nothing less than "a final solution" for the poor, stating that poor people will be "driven out" of nice areas, into squalor and poverty where there are no jobs.  The association with the Holocaust is obvious, and disgusting.

It is also complete nonsense.  £20+K in housing benefits (approx $30K) is a high figure.  It is more than a great deal of people who aren't on housing benefits can afford.  Why should taxpayers pay poor people to live in houses that they themselves cannot afford?  It is nonsense, and the facts get in the way of the leftists fear-mongering, and that is why they scream all the louder to drown out the facts.  All that was necessary was for the government to stand behind their decision, wait for the screaming to die out, and explain just why this was an unfair system, and why it was necessary for it to be reformed.  That was, unless a particular mayor is up for re-election and is a complete coward.

Enter London Mayor Boris Johnson, who is up for re-election very soon.  If you are not familiar with Mr Johnson, he is an extremely popular Conservative MP, who is popular mainly because he occasionally says outrageous things, or appears on a comedy show and makes jokes.  His policies and beliefs however change with whatever the new of the day is.  Occasionally he will look like a hard-right Tory, other days like a socialist nut job.

Today it is the latter, and he has thrown the government under the bus, claiming that he would make sure that "Kosovo style social cleansing" would not happen in London.  Since then he has backtracked and claimed he had been quoted out of context, claiming that he actually does accept the cuts.  I don't believe him, and even if I do, his statement is still insensitive as well as idiotic.  I have listened to what he has said, and he is going along 100% with the line that these cuts are brutal and therefore needs extra interference from him so it doesn't result in social cleansing.

The problem with Boris is that, whether he does believe in the cuts or not, he has gone along with the left-wing narrative.  That narrative is that these cuts will be brutal and unfair, and if we don't do something, the result will be horrific.  Johnson may argue that they are necessary, but he is trying to be a moderate, and accepts that these cuts are unjust and harsh.  What he should have done was hold the line and say that spending a stunning £400 a week on a family on housing benefits is outrageous and needs altering immediately, whether there is a deficit or not.  The debt only makes them more urgent.

He has not done this, and has instead put the government on the defensive, he has given momentum to the opposition.  We should be arguing not that "well, we have to do it", but "this is the just thing to do as it is unfair to the taxpayer, and not good for society to be handing out enormous benefits."  By wussing out of this, Johnson has put conservatives into great difficulty.  He should focus less on his own career, and more on the good of the country.

Conservatives need to stay strong, but at the moment we are crumbling.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Less than a week to go - Remember November

It's all getting very exciting in America.  Less than a week to go until the Republicans storm the House and Senate.  I'm not sure whether the GOP will gain the Senate, but I don't believe that the House is really in doubt.  It will be a massive rebuke to the Obama agenda, and will hopefully cripple it permanently.

But now is not the time to get soft.  We need to keep going, not getting complacent, not doing anything stupid.  This goes for the next week.  Those seats in a toss up can still be won and lost.  This will be a hammering, the only question is how much of a hammering will it be?

If you need some inspiration - take a look at this video, got to love American politics!


Saturday, 23 October 2010

In Stockport, England - Liberal Democrats Bow to Islam.....Again!

Let's get this out of the way first.  This story has very little do with Muslims and a LOT to do with the left.

In my hometown of Stockport, England, there is a small business - a sandwich shop called "Beverley's Snack Shack."  The place has been there in one way or another since 2002, but now it is under attack.

There is no doubt that living near a sandwich shop that serves hot food can be unpleasant at times.  Anywhere that cooks food will have some sort of smell coming out of it, and that smell will not always be a pleasant one!  These factors are always considered whenever planning permission is given for a place of business such as this, and when any extensions are made to the business.  Conversely, it is also taken into account when house prices are considered - so someone buying a residence near a place where food is professionally cooked will almost certainly pay a lower price for the property than they would if the restaurant or shop did not exist.  Therefore, the free market allows prospective buyers to place a value on the inconvenience and work out whether the asking price matches compensates enough for that inconvenience and/or discomfort.  So a £160,000 home may sell for $120,000 if there is a strong smell coming from next door.  The prospective buyer has to work out if that added inconvenience of the smell is worth £40,000.  If it is, they buy the house, if not they go elsewhere.

This is what has happened in Shaw Heath in Stockport.  Yet, with the basic replacement of an extractor fan, the next door neighbours to the "Snack Shack" have complained about the smell.  This case would of course not be a case - they knew the risks, they knew the smell, and the replacement of a fan does not alter that.

However, the next door neighbours have been sneaky, and made a political statement that would set alarm bells ringing in the heads of the Stockport Council - a Council which is dominated by the hard-left Liberal Democrats.   The neighbours wisely stated that the smell of bacon was offending Muslim visitors to the house.

Of course, this pushed the panic button in the Chambers of Stockport Borough Council, who immediately retroactively denied the restaurant permission for the fan (can you even do that?) meaning that the store has had to remove the fan.  I am not sure how the business is now operating, but Stockport is an area that was hard hit by the recession, sandwich shops are not exactly corporations and I wouldn't be at all surprised if this decision is not making it extremely difficult for them to stay in business.  Over-sensitive lefties have attacked a hard-working business just on the basis that they might have inconvenienced the most protected group in our society.

Once again it shows that the Left always respond whenever Muslims are seen to be offended - even those who might only be a visitor to somewhere once every blue moon.  We have seen it in the last week with the firing of Juan Williams at NPR, and we see it on a daily basis all over the world - the Left are absolutely terrified of offending Islam in even the most minor way.  The left have no problem putting Christians and other groups through the mill and making all sorts of hateful comments about them, but offend a Muslim even accidentally, and it is as if the world is going to cave in.

This isn't just political correctness, it is cowardice.  These people are sensitive to Islam because they are scared of its radical elements getting angry.  The whole left-wing approach to radical Islam has been to lay down and surrender until they are no longer angry with us, and this has been extended to all Islam.  It is time for this to stop!  It is not Islam that is the problem, it is the left who mollycoddle Muslims as perpetual victims that are the problem.  Do they really believe that this will lead to greater integration in our society?  Do they not see that it will lead to anger, intolerance and divided communities, as it has done already?

Everyone must be treated equally under the law in a civilised democracy - special exceptions made to so-called "persecuted" groups is not the answer.  It also sends a message to radical Islam that there methods are working, as our politicians are bending over backwards to meet their every need, all out of fear.

So, if you live in Stockport - go to Beverley's Snack Shack and buy 10 bacon butties......EACH!!

Friday, 22 October 2010

Time for Britain to Stand Up Against Wikileaks

So, Wikileaks have done it again!  The hard-left, anti-war, terror-loving lunatics have somehow managed to unearth over 400,000 classified US documents, and as their name suggests, they have leaked them.  The security implications of these leaks for the US are huge.

The fact that the left-wing media in America and Britain isn't united in disgust at these leaks tells us a lot about their own attitude to the war and to their national security.  If left-wing media outlets such as The Guardian and The New York Times didn't publish these leaks, then there wouldn't be much of a story.  It would still be a danger, but it wouldn't be anywhere near as bad.  This isn't a First Amendment thing, this is a personal responsibility issue.  NYT etc have not shown any responsibility.

Yes, the Iraq war is over, but there is a lot that still should not be being released.  This isn't like revealing stuff about the Korean War or whatever, the situation in Iraq is still current, and those at Wikileaks have endangered people just to advance their petty political agenda.

These points are not unique and will be repeated ad nauseam over the next few days.  The point I wish to make is that we Brits should be offended by this as well.  Britain was a central figure in the War in Iraq, and a security breach against America very quickly becomes a security breach against Britain as well.

As a result, Britain shouldn't let America fight these loons on their own.  David Cameron or William Hague should be out first thing tomorrow condemning this outright.  They should state that this put lives at risk, both Iraqi lives and British lives as well as American lives.  Finally, they should tell the public just how damaging security breaches are, and make it clear that this sort of childish, but dangerous behaviour will not be accepted, and that the British government will seek prosecution of these morons.

Wikileaks are beginning to turn this sort of dangerous tactic into a regular occurrence, and both Britain and America have to stop it as soon as possible. The security of Iraq, Britain and America depends on it.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Obama and Clinton's Betrayal of an Ally

My latest article is out in The American Thinker today.  It focuses again on Anglo-American affairs, this time on the spending cuts going on in Great Britain, and how the defence cuts have been made worse by the anti-British attitudes of Hillary Clinton and the Obama Administration.

It aims to show how the Obama Administration has sidelined Great Britain, labelling us a second rate power and nothing special, and that as a result, Britain has started acting like a second rate power.  So, when Hillary Clinton starts moaning that our defence cuts are going to damage our contributions to NATO, she has only herself and her administration to blame.

Britain should not have cut their defence spending by 8%, but the Coalition have only been able to do that because the conservative right in Great Britain have lost the argument when it comes to Britain being a first-rate power.  Part of this defeat has come down to the fact that we are no longer able to display our relationship with America.  How can we claim a Special Relationship with America, when the Obama Administration is denying that the relationship ever existed?

Anyway, the article can be found here.

The Only Word We Should Hear From Labour is "Sorry".

Jeff Randall leads The Daily Telegraph today with a scathing criticism of the Labour Party - a party that is currently trying to hurl blame onto the Coalition for the current spending cuts, despite Labour being responsible for putting us into ridiculous levels of debt in the first place.  Randall points to the incredible hypocrisy of Labour who, having spent and spent and spent the country into near oblivion, now turn around and criticise the spending cuts as "harsh" and moan about how it is going to affect the poor, and limit services etc.

Now apart from the fact that the cuts cannot significantly hurt the poor and drag us down into a Dickensian nightmare, because we will still be spending hundreds and hundreds and billions of pounds (well over a trillion dollars for my American friends) on services and welfare etc, it is also a bit rich for Labour to moan about it, even if that was the case.  Why? 

Well, as Randall's article shows, public spending grew by a stunning 50% in real terms under the Labout government!  This rise in spending is Obama-like in both its scale and its destructiveness.  It left us wide open to get nailed by a recession, and sure enough that is exactly what happened in 2008.  They can try and blame "the bankers" all they want, but the fact still remains that Britain was ridiculously unhealthy economically when the recession hit, which then only made things much worse.

As I have said in my previous post, I do not fully agree with the distribution of the spending cuts, but there is no argument that spending cuts were absolutely 100% necessary.  Britain could still double-dip, it could still go bankrupt.  Britain is not out of this crisis yet, and yet Labour still argue that the Coalition is doing too much!!  It really is quite incredible.  They have destroyed business, wrecked the economy, seen our unemployment rate soar and made Britain the sick man of Europe once again - and yet they still don't seem to acknowledge that there is a problem, or that they are the primary figures responsible.

If there was any justification in the world, the only thing we would have heard yesterday from the Labour benches would have been "Sorry about the mess we have caused."  Of course, that didn't happen - all we heard was a mix of mockery of the Tories, and hand-wringing about the "poor and the vulnerable." 

Well, Mr Miliband and Mr Johnson, if government spending is so damn good, and your government was such a great bloody success, would you care to inform me why, after a 50% rise in public spending in real terms, that we even have any poor people?  With all that spending on "poverty" and welfare, shouldn't we have abolished poverty?  Shouldn't we all be living in some sort of healthcare/housing/public services paradise?  Wasn't that the whole reason for all these stupid programmes and schemes that drove us into economic suicide in the first place?!

Of course, we are not living in a welfare paradise, because government spending wrecks economies and lives, it does not fix them.  That is exactly what Britain has discovered in the last 13 years of a Labour government, and it is now time to make it right.  However, it needs the current Coalition to put forward the case for low tax, low spending, small government, or the chance will be wasted, and Labour will capitalise on this ridiculous situation.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Britain's Spending Cuts - Inconsistent!

With France having exploded into rioting over the last week over the extension of the retirement age from 60 to 62, we have seen similar outrage today in Britain as Chancellor George Osborne has announced what are, for the most part, pretty meagre cuts.

Do not be mistaken by the Left's rhetoric, these spending cuts are not strong enough, but they are a start.  The Financial Times for instance is trying to paint these as some sort of mega cuts, but 4.5% cut over 5 years isn't exactly earth-shattering  But, with a strong left-wing movement in Britain, as well as the hard left Liberal Democrats having significant influence in the new government, the current cuts are really all that are politically feasible.  And I believe that on the whole, these cuts will work out well for the Coalition.  It will restore at least some confidence to the markets, and possibly to job creators too, in spite of the tax increases that will hit over the next few years.  Personally, I would have liked to see more cuts to welfare, cuts and reform to the NHS (which has remained untouched), less cuts to the military and less tax increases (which will only prevent growth).

I have an article coming out over the next few days which specifically cover the military cuts, but in the mean time I would like to focus on something that caught my eye that not many media outlets have picked up on.  We have seen that NHS spending has been ring fenced, and this has been debated by many.  But, today it was announced that International Aid has been increased by a stunning 33% and Climate Change funding (whatever the hell that consists of) has been increased by a hefty 18% - you can find an easy to read graph of all the cuts etc here.

Now, I'd be pretty annoyed had they not been cut, but for the budgets to be increased!?  It is quite clear that this is a total fop to the Liberal Democrats.  No conservative with any understanding of immigration would support a massive international aid budget.  The only way to get countries out of poverty is to encourage market growth, not to support big government programs and fund state sponsored dictatorships.  There is no country that has been lifted out of poverty by international aid, not one.  In addition, when you are giving some of that aid to India - a nation that has its very own nuclear weapons program - you know your policy is broken.  Yet this is not being tackled.

Climate Change - well, unfortunately, whether or not you believe in Climate Change or not, this is nothing more than economic stimulus for supposed "green jobs".  As we have seen in both America and Britain, this doesn't work.  True green jobs, like almost every job, is created by the private sector, not by tax and spend policies subsidising pointless industries.  Again, conservatives know this, left-wingers don't, so why on Earth have we increased the budget?

The spending cuts tell us a lot about the strength of this coalition.  It shows that they have managed to get spending cuts through, but they have had a hell of a lot of compromises to make to the left in order to get them through.  Increases in Climate Change budgets and International aid are enormous concessions, as are enormous cuts to the military budget.  In addition, even with these moderate spending cuts, we are beginning to see a massive backlash from vested interests in the unions and public sector - it is not going to be easy

If the Coalition wants to try and push forward a conservative agenda that is going to put Britain back on the right track (so to speak), it is going to have to fight tooth and nail for it, and with the gaggle of "centrist" Tories and hard-left Liberal Democrats, I just can't see how they are going to do that.  


Sunday, 17 October 2010

Milton Friedman - still relevant today!

I love the work of Milton Friedman, and think he has become more relevant in the Obama years in America than perhaps he ever was during his lifetime.  The Nobel Prize winning economist was a continual advocate for smaller government, lower taxes and freer markets - and would put his arguments forth in a way that could rarely be combated by his opponents.  I have yet to see anyone take on Milton Friedman in a debate and win.

As a result, I have found some of his work on LibertyPen, a great YouTube site, full of conservative and libertarian videos.  This one is a great example of the work of Friedman, where he goes into a University, and answers the many questions that the (often) left-wing students have about his work.  The crowd is quite rowdy but it is clear that many are gobsmacked by his arguments, and a greater number are entirely convinced.  An example can be found below.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Falkland Wars - part II

So, the Argentinians are at it again.  Corrupt socialist Evita wannabe - Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner - has been eyeing up the Falkland Islands to prop up her general unpopularity amongst everyone except American left-wingers.  Just like Galtieri invaded the Falklands in the 1980's as the popularity of his military junta was at a low, it is no coincidence that Kirchner has picked now as her time to start aggressive posturing.

The Falkland Islands debate is one that is entirely false.  The lands are British, and have always been British, with a brief period of Spanish occupation - Argentina has never owned the Falklands, and their only claim to it is that they are near to it, and therefore deserve them.  A nonsensical argument - imagine if every country did this!  Would America try and claim Canada?  Would Britain try and claim France again?  Well, Britain discovered the Falkland Islands in 1690, and has owned them constantly since 1833, so Argentina will have to come up with a lot better than that.

What the incident does do, amongst other things, is show exactly why Britain needs a good Navy.  The Falklands are ours, and despite the squeals of the left-wing, we must defend them - not just because they are sovereign British lands, but also because the citizens of the Falklands overwhelmingly want to remain British.

In this era of cuts, when there is a lot of pressure from the Left for us to focus on defence cuts instead of welfare and social program cuts, this should be a reminder as to why we need a Navy, and an Army etc.  It isn't there just to deal with pockets of radical Islam - it is there to defend our territories against hostile nations if and when we need them.

The Argentina situation is one to keep an eye on.  America has backed down from supporting us in this with the Obama administration coming to power, and we may have to fight this one on our own if it ever comes to it.  But if it does come to it, then we need to guts, and the resources to defend our territory, and the people who live on them.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Claire Berlinski - "There is No Alternative: Why Margaret Thatcher Matters"

About a year ago, I picked up a book on one of my favourite politicians - Margaret Thatcher.  The author - Claire Berlinski - was not a name I had heard of, and yet the book intrigued me enough to purchase it.  What is so intriguing about the book, which is called "There is No Alternative: Why Margaret Thatcher Matters", is that it is not simply another dry biography of the Iron Lady.

Thatcher is not treated as "just" another Prime Minister by Berlinski, but instead as someone whose life and philosophy had far-reaching consequences, consequences that should still challenge us today, especially in Britain.  It examines Thatcher's philosophy, her achievements, as well as the context in which such decisions are made as well as the background of her enemies such as Arthur Scargill.  The book is very readable - I read it in two sittings in which I wrote and highlighted all through it - and extremely exciting, as well as being well-researched and fair (don't be mistaken - this is not hagiography by any stretch).

I would recommend it highly, and if anyone who wanted a good book on Margaret Thatcher, this would be number one on my recommendation list without a shadow of a doubt.  It is for this reason that you will find it in the Amazon store linked to on the side-bar of this blog!

In addition to this, Berlinski was recently a guest on one of my favourite shows - Uncommon Knowledge - which frequently invites important conservative thinkers for a detailed interview about the authors knowledge of a certain subject.  So Berlinski is asked not only about Thatcher, but also about the role of Turkey in the modern world, and also the question of radical Islam.  I would therefore recommend this latest episode of Uncommon Knowledge and therefore I link to it on this post.  If it inspires you to buy the book, then please do so - you will not regret it!

Thursday, 7 October 2010

The Left's Terror Folly

My latest article in the American Thinker was out yesterday.  It focuses on the myth that Islamic anger is somehow isolated to American foreign policy.  This myth infects the policies of the Obama Administration and various European governments.  However it has been blown to pieces by the latest attempted terrorist attacks in Europe, which  targeted countries that did not follow Bush's foreign policy.  This has significance for the left's understanding of the future of foreign policy.

The article can be found here.