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Bill Brinsmead
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A great victory for John Major. The Conservatives won 42% of the popular vote against 35% for Labour - not at all close David. Most memorable election night ever.
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Calm down Chris and get some perspective. Former Labour MP Robert Maxwell stole around £500m from the Mirror Group pension fund.
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He is one of a dishonest band surely. UKIP MEPs, plus honorary Ukipper Roger Helmer, sought to be members of an organisation where they do no work and achieve no results and yet they still trouser enormous salaries and generous expenses. I guess they will take their pensions too. This would be deemed fraudulent in any other activity. Why not get elected, stay at home AND refuse the money. A more honest way of opposing the European Parliament.
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Cheer up, we can only improve if the Scottish Party focuses on things that matter to Scots - same as us really; the economy, jobs, inflation - and not keep banging on about the Union.
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Many private sector employees are experiencing falling or static pay. Many public sector employees are having their salaries frozen at 2009 levels. Those in receipt of final salary and state pensions will be getting an increase of 5.2% in 2012 following a 3%+ increase in 2011. Pensioners suffering? Maybe some are.
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Philip Hammond is very capable and very competent. He is also on the right on economic policy and Europe - but I guess the Conhome boys know this. Justine Greening is work in progress and has yet to prove she can cut it - seen her at conference a few times where, as someone else said, she struggled with her brief. On the other hand she has to be better than Theresa Villiers who is a known car crash.
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Liam Fox has done the honorable thing and behaved with some dignity during the past 6 days. Time now for him to reflect from the backbenches on how he can be a better team player in future.
Toggle Commented Oct 14, 2011 on LIAM FOX HAS RESIGNED at thetorydiary
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Fiona makes some sound points. It was the 6th consecutive that I've attended. We members were often outnumbered by NGO folk and lobbyists at fringe meetings - I took to ironic applause whenever they put a question - but there was a lot of very well informed member participation - particularly from councillors - at fringe sessions on draft NPPF, local issues and so on. Most new MPs engaged with us members at fringe meetings -e.g. Raab, Javid, Wollaston, Stewart - and there was the usual sterling work from Eric Pickles and David Willetts. But most Main Hall sessions are dull and a bit patronising. Hope to attend next year's in Brum.
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Looks like an endorsement of the cautious reform programme and economic stewardship of Donald Tusk and Civic Platform.
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Liam Fox has acknowledged his flawed judgment. His future depends on how others view the flaw and his response. Can't see why the authoritarian right are so concerned to support him. He has adopted some right leaning postures - on relations with the US and on Europe - but there has been no coherent political viewpoint from him. Liam Fox reminds me of another Scot, the former Conservative MP Teddy Taylor - a populist in his Cathcart seat in Glasgow, a Thatcher favourite, loses his seat, gets a berth in Southend and ends up as muted pussy cat.
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Tim, your attacks on Ken are silly, belittling and, as has been said, just tiresome. We need to remember that Ken Clarke has held the major offices of state with some distinction – Treasury, Education, Health and the Home Office. A great servant to the Party. Most Tory members I know think the same.
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Can recommend the ETAP in Salford Quays/Media City. French chain; new, simple, comfortable at £50 per night. Tram - stop by the hotel - to the conference centre in 10 minutes with a concessionary fare[i.e. free] for delegates.
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Heard a few real people there apart from Peter Hitchens and Nick Bowles for instance who lived up otherwise dull events. For most delegates the FZ meant EUROPE and all its ills. Policy Exchange - similarly located outside the secure zone - ran livelier, better attended sessions on a wider range of issues.
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Not so much Malcolm. You can stay at a comfortable new French chain hotel near Media City [Salford Quays] for £50 per night, travel to the conference centre by the excellent tram service in 10 minutes - free thanks to a concession to delegates, you could have booked your conference place and travel early and done it all for less than £250.
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What bollocks Bruce. Monday/Tuesday I attended 18 or so fringe events, almost all well attended, i.e. the venues were full, more younger folk than ever, a lot of impressive new MPs participating.
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The Countryside Alliance and the Country and Land Business Association, with a total membership of 136,000, represent and speak for people who live and work in the countryside. Theirs is a legitimate voice of people in rural areas - unlike that of the urban based CPRE and that of the metropolitan elite that has hijacked the National Trust.
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Having read their pieces for more than 25 years I'd say that Simon Jenkins and Max Hastings have always been Little Englanders; praising rural churches, hunting with hounds, both traditionalists plus their recent hysteria over possible reforms to planning. I'd guess that they have been emboldened by eurozone troubles to join the euro sceptic chorus. Not sure what it says about their self awareness, judgment or courage in that its taken them so long.
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The Countryside Alliance - membership circa 100,000 - represents the views of its supporters in rural areas. Contrast with the National Trust where the Director General has launched an ill judged and expensive campaign for which she has no authority or member endorsement. She has hijacked the Trust to support the agenda of the Campaign to Protect Rural England for whom she once worked. This member of the National Trust thinks it outrageous.
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The Director General has no mandate from NT members for her shrill and ill judged campaign. Instead of behaving like a custodian of our built and natural heritage the Trust is acting like an interest group. We members join the Trust to support and enjoy its heritage stewardship. We don’t pay our subscriptions to support contentious lobbying. We would join the Campaign to Protect Rural England [CPRE] if that was our aim. Representations and lobbying are best left to us the public and to interest groups formed for the purpose. Where is the authority to devote funds from member subscriptions to fund the campaign? The Director General’s time; the use of Corporate Affairs Department and other staff resources; preparing petition forms and their display in Trust properties; the additional work of staff in dealing with petition enquiries and then in collating petition forms. This lobbying and political adventure by the Director General - who was recruiting from the CPRE - is a distraction from the job of leading an organisation with an annual income of more than £400m and 3.6 million members. It is a failure of judgement that in many other situations would lead to a CEO having to consider their position. Unlikely at the NT as she is reflecting the values of her Chairman; What influence is he exerting in using the Trust to push his own views? Governance at the Trust has always been opaque, its current actions point to the need for reform.
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There are serious conflicts of interest in any police authority opposition to the elected commissioner proposals. The Chairman of a Police Authority [always a County Councillor and never one of the first rank] will get an allowance of £15k plus and his mates [also County Councillors] will get an allowance of at least £9k. Saw on an audit of Cumbria Police Authority - just to north of me - that 9 County Councillors received an allowance of £9,341 per year in addition to their £8,030 per year for being County Councillors. Nice little earners - so don't listen to them.
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Anyone know what the Scottish Daily Mail leads on today?
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Sorry Ruth, usual trite stuff garnished with some relish to tickle eurosceptic palates. For best analysis see Wolfgang Münchau in the FT - the consistent and most insightful critic of eurozone governance.
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John Prescott is the epitome of the 'busy fool'. Always active, always useless, sometimes harmful.
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