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RupertMatthews
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Another good article Alex. And my mum remembers that when she was a little girl in the 1930s her mother would never let her go to post a letter "because of those horrid Fenians". They used to put bombs in letter boxes that were rigged so that they exploded when the next person dropped a letter in the slot. Lovely. Grandma always used to post the letters herself so that she would get killed instead of her children. Of course a few years later they were getting blitzed by the Germans. Tough childhood.
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A worthwhile cause and the best of luck to them. As anyone who has campaigned against the LibDems knows only too well, these sorts of dirty tricks are stock in trade for them. Personal attacks, smears, slurs, half-truths and outright lies are all typical LibDem tactics. I think that they believe that since their motives are pure and the ends to which they aspire are truly the best for the people, then any tactics are acceptable. They see themselves as being clever and smart, not dishonest. The real problem is that the media are generally willing to go along with the view that the LibDems are not really politicians, but are local activists doing their best. For this reason the LibDems usually shrug off any criticisms as being an honest mistake by an enthusiastic campaigner or even as an example of nasty Tories (or Labour) smearing nice LibDems. Makes your blood boil but there it is. I doubt this will change much in the near future.
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Good old Boris. Remember that he is, after all, Mayor of London and his job is to run that city and get himself re-elected. There are thousands of Tory councillors up and down the country who find themsselves reacting to local circumstances while remaining within the greater Conservative Party and movement. This is not and should not be seen as a challenge to Mr Cameron. It is the Mayor of London doing his job. Just for once I agree with Jack Stone - perhaps I should go and have nice lie down.
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Another good iconoclastic piece from the excellent Roger Helmer. I agree that lobbyists have their place, so long as they stay in it then there are no problems. As BritishWatcher says, so long as MEPs (and MPs) are fully open about it all, there is no real problem. By the by, interesting use of a poltergeist analogy. I have just brought out a book on this fascinating (and disturbing) phenomenon. See it here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poltergeists-Rupert-Matthews/dp/1848372434/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1265880523&sr=8-1 (Tim - do you allow blatant plugs like that on ConHome?)
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There are two inter-related issues that Mr Mundell does not address, both of which are set to become increasingly important in this constitutional debate: 1) the EU 2) English nationalism. The EU wants to break up its nation states into regions in order to undermine both the nationalism among the people that it sees as a primitive emotion to be destroyed and the national governments that it seeks to subvert to gather power to itself. In the UK this means supporting the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish bodies as they are the correct size for EU regions, and breaking England up into artificial regions. English nationalism has gathered pace over the past 20 years and is still increasing. This will lead to a resistance to the regional agenda, a new and more aggressive view of what the Scots, Welsh and N.Irish get up to and how UK resources are allocated. I also predict a growth in identification with counties as a reaction to regional bodies. It would be nice to see the EU and England included in debates about devolution. So often it is only the Celts who get a look in. In passing, where do the Cornish fit in?
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Indeed. So what are we going to do about it?
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HI Lindsay Much as I admire your work, I think you are wrong on this one. It is a matter of scale. If mass purchasing of anti-virus drugs was a matter of a million quid, I might go along with it. Sadly, however, we are talking about hundreds of millions of pounds. For a government to spend that sort of cash on behalf of the public is justifiable only if it is entirely necessary and it is unlikely that the individuals would do so themselves. I suspect that this is not the case. First, it turned out to be unnecessary (and I really don't know enough about it to comment on the probability of a pandemic when this decision was made) and second many people might have felt willing to go out and spend a few quid themselves. Basically it is the sheer scale of the cost that is the problem here. R
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That was in reply to Francis, sorry I pushed the wrong button.
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Ummmm. Can we be more precise about which "handful of self-interested scientists and journalists" we are talking about here. Some of us might have a different view to you. And, as you probably realise, I have never been much of a one for consensus. It is more important to be correct than to be consensual. Ask Galileo. :o)
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Quite right, Ben. I was pretty irate too. Just one technical point, but shouldn't that be "stuck up two fingers"? We are British, not American.
Well said Simon. And well done for saying it so eloquontly.
Toggle Commented Jan 25, 2010 on Should there be taboos in comedy? at Simply Simon
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Bandwagon?? I was rather under the impression that it was the AGW brigade who had their hands on all the levers of power, access to all the big money and controlled access to the mainstream media. Yet another example of the bleeding heart liberals trying to portray themselves as the underdogs when in fact they are topdogs with savage wolfish tendencies.
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This one needs to be played carefully. There are a surprisingly large number of people out there who genuinely believe that it would be a good idea if politicians were forced to work together in constructive dialogue instead of indulging in confrontational yah-boo politicking as exemplified by PMQs. This line of argument stands a good chance of actually persuading people to vote LibDem in the hope of achieving this nirvana by means of a hung Parliament. As so often, I fear that the powers that be in our Party do not understand the thinking of those who vote LibDem.
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Utterly bizarre, but not very surprising. Our bin men are pretty good at picking up extraneous rubbish and took everything away this week despite the Christmas overload.
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Jan 8, 2010