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Disillusioned
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Everybody in CF on campus needs to read this. Excellent advice that can easily be put into practice...Much more realistic than fancy (and expensive) newspaper ideas - your approach is also likely to produce much better results I suspect.
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All this talk of retail workers feeling obliged to work tomorrow and being forced to work Sundays is patronising and from my experience pretty untrue. For a start a lot of weekend workers are part time students (or in their gap year like myself) and given that Sunday normally pays time and a half there’s normally no shortage of people willing to work Sundays. Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday and people like myself contracted to work Sundays will work it – just as office workers would probably be working Xmas Eve if it had fell on a Tuesday. Most of those seeking to limit opening hours to ‘protect’ retail workers haven’t worked a day in retail in their lives. No doubt too they expect to be able to stroll into a restaurant on a Sunday afternoon or evening – should restaurants have limited hours to protect waiters? Having said that I oppose extending Sunday trading hours. The status quo is adequate and works well. Allowing ‘browsing time’ half an hour before the shop officially opens makes little difference as most Sunday staff already start work a bit before the shop opens.
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[i]I certainly don't think that the eloquent and decent Malcolm Rifkind is anti-American[/i] Would this be the same Rifkind who remarked to American senators that, "you Americans don't know the horrors of war"? He was addressing Bob Dole, who was permanently disabled and nearly killed in WWII. Senator John McCain, a POW in the Vietnam War came close to hitting Rifkind in the meeting. Rifkind is a disgrace to the Conservative Party, one only needs to consider his terrible record in govt.
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Since Rifkind will be furious this is excellent news. :o) McCain is outstanding, he deservedly commands enormous respect domestically and internationally. Depending on how the Republicans do in the November mid-terms they may be forced to give the Rep nomination to a ‘moderate’ like McCain. Indeed with Hillary looking a likely candidate for the Democrats, the Republicans main goal will be to stop Hillary – and McCain could do just that. The special relationship has been damaged by the unfortunate hostility of many Brits towards President Bush. John McCain would be a fantastic president for the special relationship, his brand of conservatism and persona could win back friends of America in Britain and reaffirm and strengthen the special relationship. The importance of that cannot be underestimated. The special relationship is not only vital economically but it is also key to future security and stability. In these troubled times Islamofascists pose a global and grave threat not only to innocent life but also our values; the US chiefly has not forgotten the lessons of failed appeasement – with Israel, Australia and Canada we need to stand with America. This will hopefully be the first of many instances of Cameron and McCain standing together, future instances perhaps involving Prime Minister Cameron visiting President McCain at Camp David.
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Leftist apologists for the USSR and Cuba never look back with regret…(Indeed the far left today continues to turn a blind eye to the disgusting censorship and persecution in Cuba). Anyway I can only presume Cameron is ignorant of Thatcher’s plea to P.W. Botha that South Africa end apartheid and release Mandela...And er how is it that the left opposed sanctions against Iraq but not against South Africa? And it’ll obviously be the left leading the campaign against sanctions for Iran…
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The law-abiding majority pay for shoplifting criminals; losses are passed on to everybody else in the form of higher prices. (Hence perhaps one reason why the most stolen consumer item; razor blades are so expensive). Shoplifting is a crime like any other; first time offenders should perhaps be treated leniently but repeat, serial offenders must be jailed. So called minor crimes do matter and reducing them is important, a proven and effective way of reducing crime is jailing repeat offenders – three strikes laws in America keeping repeat offenders locked up have shown sharp reductions in crime.
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There are restrictions on neutrality and impartiality regarding the television media that prevent Sky News from becoming a British equivalent to Fox News. (Since we have such a partisan newspaper press it is patronising that TV is denied a similar freedom). Anyway the subtle liberal bias of the BBC manages to conform to the rules of its ‘independent’ Ofcom monitors. It’s also worth pointing out that Fox News is not the rabid right wing broadcaster the left (who’ve never watched it) claim it is.
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Michael Gove should be in the shadow cabinet, Malcolm Rifkind should retire to the Lords..
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When a British Labour Prime Minister is in agreement with Conservative friends in the USA, Canada and Australia and the leader of the Conservative Party in Britain is in disagreement with such allies, instead backing corrupt bureaucrats in the EU and UN there’s something seriously wrong. By siding with the EU over the US, Australia and Canada Cameron is an embarrassment internationally. Unless this is a one-off I know my support for Cameron is pretty tenuous. It’s depressing how silent Israel’s critics are on her provokers in Hezbollah, Iran and Syria. Their inability to grasp the basic fact that Israel’s enemies are operating from areas with a high concentration of civilians, rendering Israel’s aim of minimising civilian casualties difficult is frustrating. And their muted criticism of Hezbollah and Iran is outright disgusting. The only thing disproportionate meanwhile is the unfair criticism of Israel. Littlejohn, although lacking the eloquence of the excellent Melanie Philips made some good points in a recent article; http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/newscomment.html?in_article_id=399003&in_page_id=1787
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Would Mitt Romney being a Mormon pose a problem though? Some people think so...Romney, from what I know though would make a good candidate. http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2005/0509.sullivan1.html George Allen wouldn't go down well in Britain...If the special relationship is to survive we need a moderate Republican. An isolationist Democrat or someone on the right in the Republican Party winning in 2008 could further damage America’s image here which would be extremely depressing as it would invariably strengthen the anti-American camp.
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Cameron tells people what they want to hear. The liberal left; the BBC and Michael Moore’s gullible army of followers have succeeded in turning a significant chunk of the population against America and Israel. Being an ardent atlanticist I’ll admit Bush doesn’t help our case, John McCain in 2008 would be a fantastic help to maintaining and strengthening the special relationship. In the mean time however we cannot waver in our support for the American line and for our Israeli allies. Israel was indisputably spurred into conflict by a Hezbollah revitalised by Iran and Syria. Hezbollah’s private army is more powerful than the Lebanese army and for the sake of Lebanese sovereignty and Israel’s security the existence of a Hezbollah with the capabilities of kidnapping Israeli soldiers or firing missiles into Israeli territory is unacceptable. The Israel hating left is silent on the fate of the kidnapped soldiers, silent on Iranian and Syrian sponsored terrorism and silent on missile attacks into Israel. The escalation in the Middle Eastern conflict was not initiated by Israel and could be ended by Israel’s enemies immediately. It’s a no brainer. Israel’s critics have infiltrated the British elites at every level; the Foreign Office and much of the media – especially the BBC – and now it seems even some parts of the Conservative Party. We need to resist this – we need more Conservatives to join Conservative Friends of Israel.
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It makes sense for the Conservatives to adapt their message to different parts of the country. In America the Republicans and Democrats usually run on a very broad platform and tailor their message making it relevant to different regions. We need to be flexible and while Cameron’s realignment of the Conservative Party might win over some English middle class LibDem voters it’s not going to work in the north and Scotland. Providing the Conservatives can be flexible enough to allow for different approaches in different parts of the country avoiding the perception that we are a divided party this isn’t a problem.
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"I disagree. We don't need racist votes. If that's what it takes to win again, I'd rather stay in opposition." Tbh that’s a patronising and simple analysis of BNP voters. To simply characterise BNP votes as ‘racist votes’ is a typical simplification. Most BNP voters themselves are not fanatical white supremacists, a lot are not even particularly racist. People vote BNP because they’re fed up of professional politicians from the main three parties and they’re tired of political correctness and double standards. ‘Loony left’ policies like banning England flags or Christmas trees or whatever greatly help the BNP and special treatment for certain groups alienate otherwise decent people making them turn to extremism. It’s an unfortunate fact but in some deprived areas there are genuine cases of certain minorities being given preference – such cases are then exaggerated and blown out of proportion by those with a sinister agenda in the BNP. But the underlying fact remains that there are some genuine gripes of BNP voters. BNP voters are usually working class doing low paid work – their wages have not improved much in recent yrs – if we consider why that is one factor is that there is an unlimited pool of cheap labour (immigrants). The market is artificially distorted and low wages are kept low due to unlimited immigration. (And immigration keeps people on unemployment/incapacity benefit, if people won't end up much better off financially stacking shelves in Tesco who can blame them for staying on benefits?) Housing is a big problem too, while in many instances it’s not the case there is a perception that minorities are given preference – this helps the BNP. And in some cases the perception is justified. Mayor Ken Livingstone hugged and invited to London Muslim cleric al-Qaradawi who advocates policies that make the BNP look pretty tame – I don’t believe the BNP advocate executing homosexuals and Jews... The BNP are made up of nasty people, that much is true but most of their voters are people who’ve been failed by all three political parties – although most of all failed by Labour. (Prior to ’97 the far right was not really even spoke of). But simply branding BNP voters as racist and ignoring them is in the long run only going to fuel the far-right, legitimate concerns on housing and immigration need to be considered or they will be abused by racists. (And that's exactly what the BNP are doing; exploiting legitimate problems).
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The BNP have more in common with the far-left than the Conservatives.
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In retail existing Sunday staff currently work a shorter day, with longer Sunday working hours this will be taken away – if opening hours are extended staff on a 10am-4pm contract are invariably going to be pressured to work newer extended hours. In principle, it’s an unnecessary intrusion of the state to legislate on Sunday opening hours but in this case I’m opposed because I can’t think of a decent reason to change the status quo. Tesco is open 24/7 in the week, all day Saturday and for 6 hours on a Sunday, we have the longest opening hours in Europe and anybody who is physically unable to get the stuff they need with the existing hours is a pretty bizarre individual. And while I am not a Christian I don’t see what’s wrong with having Sunday as a traditional day of rest, if we allow unlimited Sunday opening hours Sunday will become another Saturday and I don’t think that’s a good thing.
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While I think Andrew Lansley does a good job I think it could be good for the party and a good PR move to make Anne Milton Shadow Health Secretary. She could probably do a better job than Lansley and being a former nurse might help.
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Pattern openly despises Israel, he’s consistently lobbied hard against Israel in the EU. Further, he’s constantly pushed for increased EU aid to the Palestinians - despite revelations that some EU money has funded Palestinian terror Pattern has never apologised to the victims of terrorism which was funded by the EU or demanded greater scrutiny on how Palestinians spend aid. (That a good chunk of aid to the Palestinians ends up in Swiss bank accounts of corrupt Palestinian officials has never bothered Pattern). On Europe Pattern is out of touch, europhilia is unpopular electorally (just like Pattern...) and the EU itself by its very existence and our membership ridicules the notion of parliamentary sovereignty and fatally threatens our independence. Cameron needs to listen to the 'Better off Out Campaign' on Europe. People like Philip Hollobone, Douglas Carswell, John Redwood and Philip Davies are worth listening to on Europe, not past it failures like Clarke and Pattern.
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For the LibDems to accuse the Tories of being soft on crime is a joke. That the LibDems perform well despite having policies unpopular with the electorate – signing away more powers to Brussels and a soft approach on crime and drugs implies that the electorate don't know the true views of the LibDems. What can we learn from B&C? Firstly we need an election campaign coordinated by CCHQ – local constituencies should not be running a by-election that can have a severe impact on the overall standing of the party. In B&C we should have been emphasising Labour failures and the soft and wishy-washy LibDem ‘solutions’ to such problems – and then underlining our credentials on efficiency in the public sector, a tough approach on crime and a guarantee not to sign away more powers to the EU. On crime, Europe, immigration – and to a lesser extent on education too the electorate likes traditional Conservative policies. We need to exploit that, especially in ‘safe’ seats like B&C. Going from the result we failed to do that as well as we should.
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Interesting story in today's Telegraph - Argentina renews campaign over Falklands claim http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml;jsessionid=1UYPDEOBPXDTBQFIQMGSFGGAVCBQWIV0?xml=/news/2006/06/30/wfalk30.xml
Toggle Commented Jun 30, 2006 on Friday 30th June 2006 at ConservativeHome
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Europe needs to be tackled carefully. I entirely agree with the sentiment expressed on this thread but were the Conservatives to adopt a stance of wanting immediate withdrawal from the EU – the BBC, our rivals and the liberal elite would not struggle to portray the Conservatives as a band of far-right extremists. While it’s true to say that huge swathes of the population are eurosceptic that doesn’t automatically translate into supporting the Conservatives – if we take a more eurosceptic line our rivals will portray us as xenophobic little Englanders, and they will succeed. Perhaps, we should quietly promise a referendum on our EU membership and leave it at that.
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At the last election it took a little while for The Sun to come out decisively in support of Labour, they stalled – although they obviously never planned to support the Tories…However, The Sun mostly reflects its readers and to an extent also influences its readers – in 1997, 2001 and 2005 The Sun could not have enabled the Conservatives to win. Hence The Sun decided to go for ‘New Labour’ and has had done that only because Labour is relatively centrist and The Sun has attempted to push Labour to the right. – Now there, is a credible Conservative Party in the eyes of the public that appears as if it could feasibly win The Sun will almost certainly revert to supporting the Conservatives. Murdoch himself wants Labour out and the Conservatives back in ASAP, as soon as that looks possible the Murdoch press will throw its support behind the Conservatives.
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Can't Ken go back to British American Tobacco or something? I’m sure I’m not the only one who is starting to find Ken Clarke as much of an irritation as Ken Livingstone. Clarke and Heseltine are both past it, they're dinosaurs of darker days. The party grassroots are firmly opposed to the Euro, the European constitution and most want to renegotiate our membership - and the likes of the Daily Mail and The Sun talk for huge swathes of the electorate in their eurosceptic stance. Sack Ken Clarke, give him a peerage and hope he shuts up - let him take an array of directorships and make a mint out of British American Tobacco, don't let him ruin the party again...
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I support civil partnerships but I don’t support gay adoption. It is surely always preferable for children to be adopted by two loving parents in a heterosexual relationship...I really cannot see anything homophobic about believing it's more natural for children to be brought up by a mother and a father. Nothing wrong with equal rights for married couples and those with a civil partnership though. (Meanwhile I hope advocates of gay adoption feel good about the pain and misery they're causing...or are they too naive to realise that a kid with two dads will end up having a pretty lousy time on the playground..)
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John Stevens is likeable, competent and could indisputably do a far better job than Ken. He has professional experience which would make him preferable to a typical politician and as an extremely well respected figure and untypical Tory he could definitely have the edge. John Stevens for London 2008!
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I’m sympathetic to what you’re saying Andrew…But most Scots don’t want full independence and what about defence and foreign relations? England would be weakened militarily if Scotland was independent and we did not have a shared armed forces. And I don’t see how shared armed forces could exist with an independent Scotland, Scots are not going to tolerate Scottish troops being sent abroad to fight a war declared by England. What about US bases in Scotland? Britain’s international status would really decline if we fragmented…I don’t know tbh, I don’t think there are easy answers.
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