Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 15, 2019

On This Day

 Austin Mitchell said “Cut the crap about the people not having voted to be poorer. Anyone who votes for an EU which is draining this country of £93 billion through the trade balance, £11 billion net contribution, and the cost of higher food prices is doing exactly that”.

Allison Pearson the Telegraph writer said    “It takes a special kind of skill to get that many people to unite against you, but Theresa May has managed it.  How the hell did we get here? Two and a half years ago, the country spoke. But it turned out there was one thing beyond the public’s influence. Their own elected representatives. Can a Parliament be in contempt of the people? Yes, and every wretched, wearisome drawn-out debate, denial and deceit that led up to the historic Common’s vote on Theresa May’s deal tonight has proved it. “Would it not be easier for the Government to dissolve the people,” jibed despairing Brexiteer Richard Bacon, quoting the playwright Bertolt Brecht. Shhh. Don’t say that, Richard. You’ll only give them ideas”. 

 Rosie Cooper (West Lancashire, Labour) voted against the Brexit deal. Rosie Cooper also voted on the following amendment: Against Conservative MP John Baron’s amendment to give the UK the right to terminate the Northern Ireland backstop without the agreement of the EU.

EU Tusk said “If a deal is impossible, and no one wants no deal, then who will finally have the courage to say what the only positive solution is?”. Wrong! I want no deal, Mr Tusk! 

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 15, 2019

The First No Deal Positive Polling In Global Britain

 The Sunderland Echo poll shows 70 per cent say Brexit should go ahead without a deal with EU. Remember, Sunderland was the first to declare overwhelmingly for Leave on June 24 2016. The brilliant folk in the North East believe passionately in this country. 

This has huge symbolic power. The people of Sunderland are not buying Project Fear II. They want and expect to leave the EU on March 29th in accordance with the result of the referendum.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 15, 2019

The Trial And Death Of Democracy?

John Redwood  wrote “Today UK democracy is on trial in Parliament. The people voted, yet a large number of MPs want to deny them the results of their vote. Some Remain MPs are too clever by half and too clever for the good of Parliament. They argue that Parliament will take back control, as people wanted, but their idea of Parliament taking back control is to return massive powers to the EU or to prevent us leaving EU control in the first place. What an unpleasant irony! They wish to go to war with the people, and deny them the result of the People’s Vote, cynically misrepresenting that as taking back control”.

Voting in constituencies throws up some strange issues vis a vis MPs, Brexit, and the electorate. In West Lancashire Rosie Cooper  in 2015 received 24,474 votes but in 2016 35,323 voted Leave. Elsewhere Tom Brake Limpdum in Carshalton got 20,819, but the referendum voted Leave 40,000! He’s called for a second referendum. And in Hull West Emma Hardy Labour got 18,342 but the referendum voted Leave with just over 46,000, 67.8%!

70% of Labour MPS hold Leave voting constituencies. So why are we facing death of democracy by a remain parliament? Perhaps we aren’t, as Bill Cash MP  stated “Today the Speaker confirmed to me that only statute can overrule statute, therefore the Grieve amendment, or any other amendments, will not have any legislative effect and cannot undo the repeal of the European Communities Act 1972 on the 29th March”. 

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 15, 2019

More Poachers Arrested

 Neil Cronshaw of West Lancs Police reports “Two vehicles  were seized and four poachers were arrested in Halsall and Rufford over the weekend. Please report any suspicious activity in your area by dialling 101 or 999 in case of an emergency”.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 15, 2019

BBC Employee Hypocrisy?

The BBC is proposing to stop we “grey” 75+ year old citizens from receiving “free” TV licences. Many of us paid our fee for years knowing of the fortunes paid to so-called “BBC stars”. One of them is Jeremy Vine , who on Radio 5 yesterday asked “Do we need a maximum age for voters? We have an aging population and as a result so-called “grey voters” have a huge influence over the outcome of elections and referendums. Is that fair when they’re less likely to have to live through the consequences?”.

Vine was speaking FOR the BBC ON the BBC. His question drew ire from tweeters, such as “No doubt intended to be provocative, but what is depressing is that there are people who would concur with this and allow others to think this is acceptable. Ageist, ungrateful, disrespectful, sad”.

In July last year when the BBC was forced to publish the salaries of its highest-paid stars for the first time. Radio 2/Eggheads host Vine was revealed to earn between £700,000-£749,999.

That’s probably one reason why the BBC should be sold to the highest commercial bidder and made to find its own commercial level without receiving guaranteed fees. 

In a remarkable landmark letter the Chief Executive of Serco plc Mr Rupert Soames  has disposed of any “Commercial in Confidence” rights held by Serco as he discloses that “As regards royalties, the total revenue Serco has received from Oaklands [Oakland Golf and Leisure Ltd] is £183,864. Of this sum, we have invested over £42,000 into a junior play area and fencing on the site [but not the golf course!]. It is important to note that we are under no contractual or legal obligation to invest this money at Beacon Park, but nevertheless, we have committed to West Lancashire borough Council that is what we will do”.

Mr Soames also discloses “The operation of Beacon Park has been extremely challenging in part due to the land re-profiling operation and the national decline in the popularity of golf as a participation sport. This is a business that was already losing money before we became involved. This combination of factors has resulted in an operating loss to Serco at Beacon Park of £285,000 since 2012. Therefore, far from the excessive profits that you suggest we’ve made from the golf centre, we have actually incurred a loss, which the landfill royalties have not been used to offset”.

While there is much to dispute in the letter, including one remarkable defence of there being issues regarding bar supplies of beer, an essential element of any 19th Hole, Mr Soames claims that “We have never been in a position where we had no bar supplies” which is hotly disputed by senior golfers who had to adjourn to a nearby pub because Serco had no draught beer in any of its seven draught pumps. 

Mr Soames is reputed to have inherited a large share of the £22,000,000 estate of his mother Lady Mary Soames, daughter of Winston Churchill, a few years ago. 

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 13, 2019

Spare Us More Project Fear

John Redwood  wrote about Project Fear “The more the false fears are dismissed by the people responsible for organising our trade, the shriller and more desperate the Project Fear voices become. The port of Calais assures us of speedy passage for trucks after exit, so the hard core Remainers renew threats of food shortages!

European pharmaceutical companies confirm they want to carry on supplying drugs, so some go on about the need to stockpile as if we are entering some undeclared economic war. Airlines carry on selling tickets for post March whilst Project Fear is still pumping out the idea the UK will suddenly be cut off from the continent.

We currently import plenty of items including perishable food from outside the EU under WTO rules without delays and problems. Over the last year I have mainly bought home grown food, but have also enjoyed good fruit and veg that the UK could not grow from African and Latin American countries. I have not needed EU product.

I like to buy domestic produce with lowest food miles where possible. After that I prefer to buy food from developing countries. As an advocate of more trade as one of the ways of helping countries out of low incomes, I like to do my little bit with my own domestic budget.

The Project Fear blizzard on much of the media prevents us having a sensible discussion about how to use all the extra money and new freedoms once we leave. There are also some government Ministers who cannot bring themselves to tell us how they will spend the money and use the new freedoms, as if they are desperate not to. They should exude sensible confidence in our future as an independent country, and should be setting out exactly what we can do in April assuming we just leave. Setting out the advantages should be part of contingency planning for the Withdrawal Agreement being voted down.

The Chancellor needs to prepare a March budget to spend the money saved and boost the economy. The Business Secretary needs to stop encouraging fears and explain how Just in time systems will work just fine once we leave. Why doesn’t he sort out the damage done to the car industry by EU and UK regulation and by high vehicle Exicse Duty. Why won’t he publish with the Trade Secretary a tariff schedule for March 30 that is lower than the EU one, with no tariffs on any imported components? We want a better manufacturing policy after years of EU rules and subsidies helping export factories from the UK.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 13, 2019

Dominic Grieve, The Political Class We Don’t Deserve

Tuesday, 2 May, 2017. As I  write this article, Parliament is shortly to be dissolved. A General Election looms that will be of the utmost importance for the future of our country. It has certainly been a topsy-turvy year. The result of the Brexit referendum in June last year, precipitated a political and constitutional crisis for the United Kingdom which is still being played out and which is likely to dominate our politics for quite a few years to come.

I am well aware that opinion in my constituency on this issue is as divided as the country was in its totality. Some see the vote as a moment of liberation and look forward to the changes it will bring, and the opportunities it will allow to carve out new trading relationships outside of Europe and to have greater control of our domestic laws and regulations including those over immigration. Others, equally sincerely, see the decision as a serious mistake that threatens both our economic well being and our security in a world which is increasingly dangerous.

What is clear to me, however, is that the decision of the electorate in the Referendum must be respected and that I should support a reasoned process to give effect to it. It was unfortunate that during the autumn quite a few people lost their heads over the triggering of Article 50 and came to believe that this would in some way be thwarted by Parliament or by the judiciary in their judgment that only Parliament could trigger a profound constitutional change of this kind. These criticisms were entirely misplaced and the proper process followed since has ensured that our system works correctly to give effect to the referendum decision through Parliament with proper scrutiny of its details.

We have also been fortunate to have a Prime Minister with the determination both to see the complex challenges of Brexit through and to do this with a constant eye to maximising opportunities and minimising the risks involved to our economic well being, security and quality of life.

As someone who has always advocated a close relationship between the UK and the European Union, I accept the result of the 2016 Referendum. I therefore strongly support the Prime Minister’s determination to secure a negotiated arrangement for leaving the EU and for forging a new trading relationship for the future, providing certainty for trade and business whilst giving us control of migration and releasing us from the direct effect of EU Law. I also believe that the people of our country will benefit from a close continuing relationship with a strong EU and I will work to help build these important links for our future. I very much hope, therefore, that the Prime Minister will be able to achieve something close to the goals she set out in her speech at Lancaster House in February.

It is also the case that we must not allow Brexit to overshadow the many other issues that need to be addressed in this election and afterwards. Despite the difficult global economic conditions since the financial crisis of 2008, Conservative led governments since 2010 have been successful in growing the economy, putting more people into employment than ever before, reducing welfare dependency and cutting annual government borrowing by around two thirds from its previously unsustainable levels.

We cannot take for granted, however, that this will be sustained. Brexit raises clear risks, although to date it is noteworthy that the economy has sustained an even keel despite Brexit’s potential to disrupt economic growth. But the greatest disruption will occur if we end the coming election with a Labour led government. Mr Corbyn’s approach, as far as he has set one out, combines extreme left wing ideology with economic, defence and security policies which are as dangerous as they are incoherent. Putting Labour in power would destroy at a stroke all the good that has been achieved through policies which, although not always easy to implement, are now clearly showing clear evidence they were the right thing to do for our economy and our country.
I am looking forward to debating these issues as the General Election progresses over the coming weeks.

It has been my privilege to represent the constituency for the last twenty years. If I have the good fortune to be re-elected, I look forward to being able to continue to play a constructive role in Parliament in addressing these important issues.

No, we don’t deserve Dominic Grieve, we deserve better by far!

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 13, 2019

Harman And Soubry On Democracy

Harriet Harman Follow @HarrietHarman 

“MPs stand up for others. Now we must stand up for ourselves…& our democracy. We all saw the TV clips of thugs shouting abuse in Anna Soubry’s face and blocking her way to parliament from a media interview over the road. Everyone agreed it was awful. It’s her job to have opinions. She’s elected to speak up not keep her head down. Everyone said it overstepped the mark.

“We have been here before (remember the harassment of Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children). About every six weeks there’s an ugly incident and we all gather in the chamber to wring our hands and do nothing.

“Attacks on, and threats to, MPs are commonplace. Jo Cox was killed, Rosie Cooper could have been killed and others are threatened with death. This is serious and we don’t know the half of it”.

Talking of the “Honourable” Soubry  Well, some can, can’t they?

Leave Consistencies: 421 (65%) Leave Voting Areas: 270 (71%) Leave Votes: 17,410,742 (52%) Leave MPs: 162 (25%) Remain Consistencies: 229 (35%) Remain Voting Areas: 139 (29%) Remain Votes: 16,141,241 (48%) Remain MPs: 488 (75%)

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | January 13, 2019

Are Our Democratic Rights Being Eroded?

The Tory MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale spoke volumes for democracy by challenging the wretched apologist for democracy, the Speaker of the Commons, last week. David Morris represents a constituency that voted 58.19% to leave the EU.

He wrote “There are precious few occasions that can ever justify an MP challenging the Commons Speaker. But last week I sadly found myself doing just that. I still believe I was right to do so. “Publish it!” I yelled at John Bercow. I was challenging our Remain-voting Speaker to come clean on what advice he had received from the Commons Clerk before deciding to trash established procedure and allow a Brexit-defying vote to be taken.

“I felt my rights had been eroded, along with those of my constituents and fellow MPs, whatever their political colour.

“The Commons had yet to receive a written clarification from Bercow, though he proclaimed he acted in our best interests by granting the amendment tabled by Dominic Grieve. Mr Bercow was flouting time-honoured Commons precedents by creating a ‘one-off’ rule, abandoning constitutional convention and compromising his role as the impartial Speaker. He also ignored expert advice from Commons Clerk Sir David Natzler, who knows these rules intimately.

“This is a man who shed his Right-wing principles as a Tory MP to win the post of Speaker in 2009 largely on the back of Labour votes. Judging from the cheers from the Opposition benches last week, it appeared he was repaying those Labour votes”.

By comparison with Morecambe and Lunesdale, is leave-voting West Lancashire faced by an erosion of our rights? We should be told.

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