Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Stroking the dog

As someone who is not a pet lover, I find it mildly amusing when someone spends a lot of time stroking a dog, only to find it jumps up and bites them in the bum. A similar principle applies to this blog posting by Iain Dale. The Tories love 'free market' principles. They are the hallmark of Thatcherites everywhere. The strong survive, the weak get squeezed and go to the wall. So businesses grow at the expense of other businesses who are unable to compete with the sheer economic power of their rivals. The powerful exploit their position in the so-called 'free' market to the disadvantange of their weaker rivals. It's a jungle out there, Jim, but it's life as we know it. As Iain Dale notes, small specialist shops, like record shops and book shops cannot compete with supermarkets and the huge Internet based companies, so you are left with whatever they want you to read or hear. Surprisingly, Iain, it's no different for bakers, or butchers shops, or small delis... or even cinemas. These businesses cannot compete with the huge corporate buying power of Tescos, Sainsburys, Asda or MGM. But hey, perhaps there is hope yet. If we wait long enough for these giant conglomerates to keep swallowing up their rivals... all we will have to do is nationalise the one company and then we can start planning a proper society based on equity, justice and diversity.

Come on England

I would love it if the England football team win the World Cup. Not necessarily because they are the best team in the tournament, but just to shut up those who seem to spend their waking hours looking for a reason to attack the manager. Eriksson isn't in the same position as Mourinho, Wenger, Ferguson etc. He can't fill the team with overseas imports, or lash out £30 million on a new player to fill a gap. He is blessed with the players we've got, and in the few weeks a year he has them he has to try to blend them into a team. When he took over from Keegan six years ago we didn't even look like we were going to qualify for the World Cup Finals. Now, we are not only going, we have a realistic chance of getting to at least the semi-final stages, and if Rooney had been fit, we may even have gone all the way. I suspect most of the hostility to Sven is from the Londoncentric media because he doesn't pick all of their favourite Spurs players at the same time, or because he wasn't cheerful chirpy cockney Terry Veneables (one of THE most overrated managers in football history)... oh yes, and the usual diet of xenophobia that has persisted since his appointment, which prompted the useless Jeff Powell to write this crap at the time: "So, the mother country of football, birthplace of the greatest game, has finally gone from the cradle to the shame. We've sold our birthright down the fjord to a nation of seven million skiers and hammer throwers who spend half their lives in darkness." If there was just one reason to win the tournament, it would be sufficient just to shove those words up Powell's rectum!

PS - Whilst we are talking football... I note that Karren Brady, Managing Director of the porno merchants football club, has criticised Birmingham City Councillors. Brady says that they are "leading the City into mediocrity". Whilst I wouldn't argue with the gorgeous pouting Karren's assessment of the Tory-Lib Dem coalition's dreadful record over the last two years, the words "glass", "houses" and "stones" come to mind.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The collected thoughts of Steve Freedom (sic) ... or should that be sick!

In a typically thorough way, Ministry of Truth has exposed Sandwell BNP Councillor Simon Smith (a.k.a. Steve Freedom) for what he really is. With views such as:

"The reason why Blacks disproportionately don’t vote is that the frontal part of the brain associated with postponing immediate gratification is not so well developed as in other races.
I mean having to go all the way down the street and marking cross on a piece of paper doesn’t bring sex, drugs or the latest pair of trainers."

It is a long, long post, but well worth the read. I suspect the Sandwell electorate were not exposed to this crap before they voted for him. It should also be required reading for those 'liberals' who thought it didn't matter if a few BNP racists were elected.... as long as you didn't vote Labour, eh?

Max loves Dave

Max Hastings writing in The Guardian, dribbles and drools unashamedly over the boy Cameron. The response below in the comments section says everything necessary:

"What a load of embarrassing sycophantic drivel. Were you paid to write this? Where's the insight and analysis? It reads like a slavering lobotomised Daily Mail editorial. Cameron is an ad man in a suit who sits down with a coterie of spindoctors to decide what records he'll play on Desert Island discs will hit the headlines. Everything about him has been transparently phoney - from the patronising "cycling to work" and Norweigian glacier photoshoots to his ridiculous attempts to set the news agenda with policy-lite speeches about "wellbeing". Is this the same "Dave" who helmed the last disgraceful xenophobic Tory election campaign that reeked of divisiveness and negativity? Note that whilst Cameron smiles to the camera, the same creepy Thatcherite Tories sit smugly in the wings - Hague, Redwood, Howard. Cameron thinks he's clever, but despite his manipulation of the media he's no intellect and has been clumsily inconsistent. Easy to feel good about life encouraging the plebs to forget money and be happy with their lot when you have millions stashed in the bank, for example. Then gatecrash a tacky Posh 'n' Becks' party."

Monday, May 29, 2006

Sandwell BNP member Simon Smith claims I got it wrong when I quoted his confused mate saying the British Nazi Party were a German Party. Incredible really, because I was in the meeting, and Smith wasn't even in the room! More BNP lies masquerading as the truth.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

One of the best...

As trade union General Secretary's go, Paul Mackney is right up there with the best. I sat briefly with Paul on negotiations about preventing redundancies at the Walsall College of Continuing Education. He was brilliant and I learnt so much about negotiating in those few hours a week. Paul will not be a candidate for General Secretary of the new University and College Union next year. His health has been bad over the last year, and he knows as well as anyone that the graveyards are full of comrades who thought they were irreplaceable, although when I saw him at the Chavez meeting a couple of weeks ago he was looking good. Well, Paul has just made his final speech as General Secretary of NATFHE after nine years at the helm. It reads like a good one.

Nazi blogger

Well, another Sandwell MBC Councillor has started a blog site. Recently elected British Nazi Party member Simon Smith is giving the world the benefit of his views, which seem to include a belief in flying saucers and the notion that the moon landings are a hoax! (Conspiracy theorist, you think?) Smith also thinks the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon were concocted by the US to allow them an excuse for world domination. Convinced he is no doubt a target for the spooks, he concludes with: If I die in a car crash or other suspicicious circumstances you will know why ! Maybe...but will you care a toss!

Tangled up in blue

I'm afraid I didn't listen to 'Dave's' Desert Island Discs, like Hughesy, I stuck with Freddie and co. on the basis that even Monty spins better than Cameron. Anyway, over at Dave, Nice but Knave you can read the alternative lyrics to Tangled up in Blue.

Mad Mel

I am reluctant to give any oxygen to someone of such exterme right wing views, but Melanie Phillips does seem to have finally left the Planet Reason. Not the least of which because she holds this potty view that Britain has effectively capitulated to Islamofascists and become the Muslim terror capital of the world, or Londonistan as she calls it. Interestingly, in an article in The Observer, she traces the roots of alienation of British Muslims (which in Phillips' world view is taken for granted) to two events. The Rushdie affair over The Satanic Verses, and the slaughter of Muslims by Christians in Bosnia. Whilst I am sure both of those things have contributed to a degree of alienation felt by some Muslims, it is peculiar that Melanie doesn't give a name check to her favourite government in the whole world... Israel. If there is any single factor which has radicalised Muslim opinion, not just in the UK but across the world, it has been the disgust with which people have viewed the Israeli treatment of the Palestinian people. Instead of delving into that sorry affair, Phillips still faithfully prints trash such as the blatant lies in a recent story that Jews in Iran are made to wear yellow ribbons, which even she was later forced to retract as false.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

When I first became a shop steward in the 1960's it was at the Hardy Spicer drive shaft factory in Erdington, Birmingham. The Transport and General Workers Union convenor at the time was Bill Morris, who went on to become General Secretary of the TGWU, a Govenor of the Bank of England and Sir Bill. I always thought Bill was made to be a full-time official... always on the lookout for a moderate way solution. His equivalent in the National Society of Metal Mechanics, Graham Gould, was always far more robust, militant and aggressive, like Jimmy Cagney on speed. Strangely, whether by his choice or theirs, Graham never became a full time official, nor did he get the queen's gong. Hardy Spicer was taken over by GKN, and when the Harold Wilson referendum took place over continued membership of the Common Market, management dished out car stickers to everyone calling for a 'Yes' to Europe result. Enough to make anyone a Eurosceptic in my book and I forecast at the time that as soon as they got the 'yes' vote they would shift production to Europe (at last, 30 years later, I can say 'I told you so'). Anyway... it looks like the next document the workforce get from their employer is likely to be a P45. The deindustrialisation of Britain, started under Thatcher and continued unabated through Major and Blair, carries on relentlessly.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Keep it in your trousers

There's an interesting vacancy being advertised working in the office of a rising star of an MP that people may find 'interesting' . OK, it may be that he's a backbencher now, but as we all know, big things are predicted. Interestingly, the post come with an offer of accommodation.... but you may want to give that some careful consideration.
If Iain Dale and co. are putting together a follow-up volume to their book of Labour sleaze... they might want to start by looking at Conservative controlled Walsall where an employee who questioned the authority for Council spending was told "This is an email which will self-destruct if an auditor comes within 10ft of it." One question stands out like a sore thumb. Why wait until the day of the Employment Tribunal before coughing up with a six-figure payment to him? Answers, headed, 'Stating the Bleeding Obvious', to the Leader of the Council, Walsall.

You couldn't make it up (continued)

I've just come back from a Council Scrutiny meeting to consider the work programme for the coming year, which was attended by one of our new 'colleagues'. In response to an allegation from a member of the public that the Council should scrutinise how Nazis get on the Council, he took umbrage and said, "I would like to remind you that I am in the British National Party... the British Nazi Party is German!!!" Doh!

Pain in the arse

Steve at Occupied Country, in one of his visits to this world, says that the Opus Dei pracice of wearing such a medievil, barbaric device as a cilice might just explain why "Ruth Kelly's got a face like a slapped arse". This got me looking at other sadistic practices this sect embark on, and there's a list of some of their Corporal Mortification's here. I think if I was ever daft enough to think about joining I might want to try the entry level... such as drinking coffee without milk or sugar, or not buttering one's toast.

Fly the Flag (Part deux)

I'll risk the wrath of the 'wrap yourself in our flag' brigade again... Nowadays, when you see an England flag on a car, sprawled across a T-shirt, or flapping from a novelty hat, you no longer assume the owner is a dot-brained xenophobe. Instead you assume he's just an idiot. And you're right. He is.

I saw a car in West Brom yesterday with two Soviet hammer and sickle red flags in the rear windows... Mick, I didn't know you could drive!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Eyes on the Prize

New estimates of the oil reserves in the ground under Venezuela mean, according to US writer Steve Lendman that...

"the US is now planning a fourth attempt to oust Hugo Chavez by whatever means it has in mind. I think the wheels of its plan are now in motion, but we won't know what will unfold until the fireworks begin. With the information now available and published here, I feel more certain than ever that US instigated serious trouble is heading toward Venezuela and maybe harsher than we might expect. Venezuela's likely total oil reserves are potentially so great that the country has to be the grandest of grand prizes for the US. It's a virtual certainty the US will do anything it takes to try to seize and control it. For those of us who respect the sovereign rights of all nations and the obligation their leaders have above all else to serve the needs of their people, we can only hope Hugo Chavez is prepared for what he knows is coming and will again succeed in deterring it."

You couldn't make it up...

Most people won't have heard of the England First party. There's no real reason that you should have done because they're crackers, but they did persuade the people of Blackburn and Dawen to elect two of these divvies on to their local Council. Anyway, I digress. They are anxious that you distinguish between the 'England First Party'... and the 'English First' Party (there's a touch of the Judean People's Front in this I think)... because English First Party is run by.... a Welshman! What the England First Party don't tell you on their web site is.... one of their newly elected councillors whose manifesto called for a ban on mixed-race marriages.... is of African descent.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Monday, May 22, 2006

Watching them watching me...

How nice to see that the knuckledraggers from the BNP on Sandwell Council have been visiting my Council website. I can assure them, I'll be keeping a very close watch on what goes on theirs too!

Richard McIlkenny has died

I met Richard McIlkenny in the early 1990's and you could not wish to meet a quieter, nicer, more humble man anywhere. The notion that he was a member of a gang of terrorists who had blown up two pubs full of innocent people was instantly ridiculous, and the people who tortured and terrorised a confession out of him, and the prison officers who brutalised him over the years, must have known that. Richard died aged 73 at the weekend, but the British state turned 16 years of his life into a nightmare.

Richard McIlkenny after been 'taken in for questioning'

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The new Sun rises..

I saw Kelvin MacKenzie on Newsnight in the week nominating an Independent headline as one of the 'most memorable headlines' feature they are running. I rarely agree with anything the loathsome MacKenzie says, but he did strike a bit of a chord with this. He said that although the so-called 'quality' newspapers sneer at the tabloids like The Sun, they have learnt the lesson of using the sensational banner headline.

The Independent seems to have taken this to a new level. News on the front page seems to have been ditched altogether for a full page new 'Exclusive' sensational banner headline every day. It's a bit like Alistair Campbell and his drive for a new initiative before breakfast every morning. Take today's Independent on Sunday. An initiative which should be applauded becomes... The Fat Police. For years people have been saying we need to move away from a National Sick Service to a proper National Health Service, concentrating on early interventions and diagnosis and preventative health care. Now it is being suggested that obesity and body fat levels should be identified early, and parents invited to consider varying the diet for their children, the Independent turns it into a full page headline giving the impression the health gestapo from the nanny state (that's the nanny state which will have to raise everyone's taxes to deal with the obesity related problems in later life) are going to be kicking your door down and shoving lentils down the throats of our kids. It's just cobblers, and making sensationalism a substitute for news. By all means give us that sort of headline grabbing when there is an important issue, but this daily 'Exclusive' approach just doesn't work.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Million Pound employment tribunal

Some months ago the Leader of Conservative controlled Walsall Council claimed I had a vendetta against the Council. Well, it appears I'm not the only one. Dismissal Payment could reach one million pounds. Ten years ago the Labour Party expelled leaders of their controlling group on Walsall Council because of alleged misdemeanours. Four years ago the Chief Executive and the entire senior management of the Council were effectively replaced following a damning report by the Audit Commission which accused the Council of having a 'culture of bullying'.

Well, perhaps the Leader or Chief Executive of Walsall Council will explain to the public exactly what you have to do to an employee in order for them to be awarded a million pounds in compensation for an Employment Tribunal settlement.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Oh happy day

Get the champers on ice... get the paste table down from the loft ready for the street party, dust down those grave dancin' shoes, get ready to boogie.... because according to Recess Monkey, the Beeb are getting ready for a very joyous occasion.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Any bets on Blair outlasting Ming?

When Ming Campbell was elected Leader of the Lib Dems it was hinted by some that he was a stop gap because no-one could agree on which of the other circling vultures should get the job. Certainly from the media reaction to Campbell's first three months it would appear the alternatives may not have too long to wait. There's still a chance for the Lib Dem's to admit they were wrong. UK Political Hack and myself are ready to support our man. Give Hemming a chance, we say. He wouldn't be any better, but we would all get a good laugh out of it.

Money (That's What I Want)

You never give me your money
You only give me your funny paper
and in the middle of negotiations
you break down.

Another good reason to boycott Heinz

Via The Guardian Newsblog it would appear they are intending to not only deny us the pleasure of putting HP sauce from Aston on our beans on toast, they want to make the bloody meal for us too! I like the comment from someone whose name I had better not use who says: "Why not just cut out the middleman and flush it straight down the toilet? Sounds like the best option for this. Bleurgh."

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


Today's special RED Independent is designed to highlight issues around world poverty.

I hate this job..

A new blog dedicated to everyone living in Dead End Street... This job sucks!

'Cette sauce de haute qualite ...'

When I was a kid my auntie lived in one of the 'yards' opposite the HP Sauce factory and just down a bit from the Ansells Brewery in Aston. We used to go and visit her on Sunday afternoons when my Uncle Donald was living there. The memory of that combination of malt, hops and vinegar smells coming from the brewery and the sauce factory is something that has remained with me all of my life. Later on, after my aunt had pegged it, we used to park the old motor by HP whilst the 'old man' had a couple of brown & mild's at Aston Cross before we trekked through Aston Park and down the hill to the match. Ansells and HP were on a hill and stood out as a landmark to people in Aston and beyond... and if you couldn't see them, you could sure as hell smell them until you got to Saltley where the smell of the gasworks (and St Andrews, we used to say) took over.

Well, the old fellah's dead, Ansells became Allied Breweries, which became Carlsberg Tetley and their beer (mild?) is now brewed in Burton I think. Now HP Sauce has been taken over by Heinz, who have announced they are to close the factory and move production of 'our sauce' to Holland. The Heinz spokesperson said, "Heinz's strategy is to invest and maintain a network of world class manufacturing facilities. We recognise the impact this could have on our employees and the community, and we are committed to helping them through this difficult period." Cobblers!

Well, that's it. I was going to say they can shove their sauce up their bottle, I'm switching to Daddies from now on.... but someone told me last night that Daddies is owned by.... HP Foods. So, I'll bloody well do without!

Monday, May 15, 2006

"By accident or design, this gives the appearance of an unpopular minority party being cheated of office by the paid staff of the ruling party" says the reactionary Laban at UK Commentators in a post entitled What the Hell happened in Kingstanding? Oddly, he goes on to say he isn't particularly surprised if this was the case given track record of Labour and the Lib Dems.

Unfortunately for poor Laban... Birmingham is controlled by... The Tories and their little yellow friends in the Lib Dems. Shame to let the facts get in the way of a good smear though.


There seems to have been a shift of some of Cameron's craziest towards the BNP. First there was this one. Then there was another. Now I hear rumours that a Tory in Sandwell has approached the BNP for membership. Well, his credentials are immaculate.

Ooh ah, Chavez no se va

Chavez in London

Sunday, May 14, 2006

'A' list, 'C' grade, B happy

I've missed most of the fun about Cameron's 'A' listers over the last week, (two hard to swallow defeats in a week Iain - dredge the Taff quickly) but this is a nice headline "I can't believe I'm a Tory" says 'A' list candidate Louise Bagshawe (who???). Neither can I, but I'm bloody glad she is. Another hilarious 'A' lister, the limp Adam Rickitt, who's claim to fame was having made Helen Worth (aka Gail Tilsley/Potter/Platt/Hillman) look like an actress, is 'profiled' in The Indie.

Don't despair comrades. Keep your nerve. Cameron will save us yet.

Welcome Hugo

Off to London this afternnon to the Mayor's welcome to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Venezuela's president is using oil revenues to liberate the poor - no wonder his enemies want to overthrow him. There's more here and here.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Greetings from Krakow

The newspapers are a day late here in Krakow, but Michael Meacher's article in The Guardian were music to my ears this morning.

I never really appreciated the fact that the BNP were so deeply involved in 'art'. BNP man denies making 'gay porn' film.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Despite the danger of being accused of being "obsessive"... I note that the greasy Cameron Crew have overlooked Iain Dale for their 'A' list of candidates. We really shouldn't be surprised though. This slimy bunch of jerks, who barely tolerate Iain's old mentor David Davis, are looking for sheep created in their own image. Still, at least it gives the public a glimpse of the problems inside Cameron's crumbling castle. Yesterday's Times showed that Labour, following 'Black Wednesday' was on 49% in the opinion polls. Last weekend, after the worst week in Blair's political life... the tories couldn't get through the 40% mark. In a month's time I forecast the Tories will be back down around the low 30% mark.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Anti-Socialist Behaviour Orders

Austin Mitchell suggests the Prime Minister should be served with an ASBO - Anti-Socialist Behaviour Order.

ASBOs provide the perfect way of dealing with the Blair anti-socialist behaviour problem. On behalf of the party Prezza should offer him a short term employment contract for one year as Leader, on condition that he agrees to a few minimal conditions.

1. No new initiatives
2. No new "reforms"
3. No new fund-raising loans or gifts
4. No new Lords, Academy Schools or Trust Schools
5. No more re-shuffles and no new Ministers appointed without election by those members of the PLP without official appointments.
6. No new wars and troops home from any war that does not involve British interests by 2007
7. No screwing on or up the job.

Sign here please.

Taking the P...

John Prescott rounds on his critics. Is this the supreme example of taking the piss? He should have been with me trying to get people out to vote last Thursday if he wanted some critics to round on. People who have voted Labour for ever were complaining about Charles Clarke and the Home Office... but it was as nothing compared to the bile they poured on the head of our venerable Deputy Prime Minister. Badmouthing Heseltine is not the answer. Labour people knew Heseltine was a tart without having to be told by John Prescott. In every other job that I can think of, shagging your junior staff in works time and on works premises usually means dismissal, and that's what everyone else knows too.

BNP not welcome here

Anti-Fascists in Birmingham wait to 'greet' Sharon Ebanks as she comes to sign in after the election she never won.

On the buses

If you should happen to be travelling on a bus in the West Midlands, just be very clear if you ask for a ticket to.. Walsall.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Beware the bogey men cometh

A lot of Labour MPs were critical of Margaret Hodge for warning of the potential of the BNP last week. She was accused of 'talking them up' on one hand, or of trying to frighten people into voting Labour on the other. Well, over the weekend John Reid has been playing the same game. Anyone talking, or even thinking to themselves, about Tony Blair bearing responsibility for last week's election defeats, are just "wanting to shift back to old Labour", says Reid. The message he is trying to convey is clear: if you want the government to stop attacking public sector pensions, stop the privatisation agenda, stop the endless inspection regimes in the NHS and local government, stop wasting billions on ID cards, halt the lapdog approach to the US Government, and end the sleazy honours system... you are just pining for 'Old Labour'. You really want to return to the days when rubbished piled up in our streets, a handful of trade union barons stopped the dead being buried and we scrapped nuclear weapons and allowed Russian brutes to rape our women and pillage the countryside.

Of course, this is total nonsense. What you might want is what people thought they voted for in 1997. More investment in our public services, an end to sleazy politicians, a better deal for pensioners, an ethical foreign policy, an end to mass unemployment, and social and economic policies based on equity and fairness.

What Doctor Reid needs to realise is that William Hague, IDS and Michael Howard all played the bogey man card... and it didn't work for them and it won't work for him.

The court should kick the fascist out

Birmingham City Council is to support the Labour candidate in her bid to overturn the result of last Thursday's election which was wrongly announced by the Chief Executive as having been won by the racist BNP. The fascist party's candidate, Sharon Ebanks intends to sign in tonight (5pm UAF demo, if anyone's around) in a bid to keep the seat. The fact that the announced result showed over 12,000 votes had been cast, when there could only have been a maximum of 9,962 doesn't seem to bother the fascists at all.

What is it about Birmingham and elections?

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Today on Radio 4 someone said they hoped Tony Blair wouldn't be forced out of Downing Street in the back of a car weeping in the manner of Baroness Brassy of Finchley in 1990. It brought memories of that wonderful, wonderful moment flooding back. Truly one of those abiding images that remain with you and can be recalled with affection all of your days.

Tory blogger Iain Dale poses with Thatcher's dummy at Madame Tussaud's. Looks almost real.... (Iain, that is).

Farewell to Highbury

25 years to the week when myself and thousands of other Aston Villa fans stood at the Clock End with tears in our eyes, Arsenal fans will do the same today as they say Farewell to Highbury. (Actually, we've had tears in our eyes at Higbury pretty often in the 25 years that followed). For years we had a collective scorn (jealousy?) for Arsenal with their boring, functional 1-0 victories (a mantle now adopted by Chelsea) but in the last decade they have turned from the ugly duckling into the swan, and their football in full flow is unrecognisable from the dross most of us have grown accustomed to. I wish them well in their bid to get back into the ill-named 'Champions League'. The fact that it would be at the expense of Tottenham, who cling to forty year old outdated notions that they are the 'dream team' makes it even sweeter. If the 'Arse' don't make it today it will add extra spice to the forthcoming match with Barcelona, and potentially pour on extra bitterness for the Spurs fans who will be shoved into a EUFA Cup that increasingly resembles the Inter Toto Fiasco Cup.

Chavez is coming to Town

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is coming for a fairly low key visit to London the week after next... and if Andy at Venezeuela Solidarity comes good with the invitations, I'll be able to report first hand details of his meeting in London with supporters of the Bolivarian revolution. On the eve of his visit, The Observer profiles Chavez.
Austin Mitchell on succession planning... "All this makes the strongest case for my proposed constitutional rule that for leaders, and particularly Prime Ministers, it should be eight years and then out. After that they're broken or barmy or both."

Mitchell also hits the target on wealth distribution: "The great handicap of the left is, because we have to give a little to a lot whereas the Tories give a lot to the few and everyone else hopes to benefit, there's no gratitude vote. People are better off but not much. They are all being pushed and worked harder. More jobs, but badly paid ones. The benefits of health and education improvement aren't widely realised because expectations rise with spending."

Saturday, May 06, 2006

The coalition tie

I was at the polling station on Thursday when who should turn up bringing his parents to vote, none other than the Leader of Birmingham City Council, Mike Whitby. Mike's parents, like Mike, have far too much sense than to live in Tory/Lib Dem run Birmingham. They all reside in Sandwell. Mike was resplendent in his Coalition tie, which is best described as a sort of washed-up blue with irritating little yellow spots.

Ian Dale has had great fun over the last couple of weeks at the expense of Prezza and his reported antics in the office. Interestingly, I was speaking to a national journalist at the count on Thursday (despatched North to cover a potential victory for the Nazi Party) who told me all is not well in the Office of one of Iain's political buddies. From what he said, although the Shadow Cabinet Member doesn't appear to be having problems in the trouser department, there are other issues about retaining members of staff (allegedly). I can't go into too much detail at the moment (Tories often try to silence these things by issuing writs, knowing you may not be willing to mortgage the house to prove you were right), but the journo took my e-mail address and said he would tip me off if they could stand it up, so to speak. Anyone wanting more details could always apply HERE.

Friday, May 05, 2006

I have absolutely no idea how these people arrived at my blog site, nor do I have the faintest idea what they are up to. Perhaps I shouldn't have mentioned I'm going to Krakow, because the picture with someone holding the Union Flag might be a bit ominous. Perhaps The BNP people are still over there in a small enclave. Anyone here speak Polish?

Invading Poland

I was just telling my old mate Ernesto I had booked a short break in Krakow next week as a post-election wind down. "Take some of your new colleagues with you" he said, "they were there in 1939!"

Anyway, I can agree with at least some of what one newly elected BNP councillor says:
Russell Green, who won a seat in Sandwell, said: "After tonight's results we can all see that the BNP is on its way.

"It is plain to see that the vast majority of us are sick..."


Forgot to post the result.

Ewart Johson (Con) 969
Bob Piper (Lab) 1592
Roger Prior (Lazy-arse) 695

On a 40% turnout.

The May 2007 Election Campaign in Abbey starts today.

I'll mention the stain on the night later, but for now, it's thank you time.

First off, (as all the best Oscar speeches do) I'd like to thank Liz and the kids. They have to put up with the nervy candidate (and the grumpy councillor) all year round, as well as helping out in the campaign.

Then I'd like to thank: Ann, Steve, Pam, Sita, Dave, Clare & Owen, Patrick, John & Richard (the Youth Movement), Cait, Andy, Ceri (& Laurence), Laura and Alex, Jim, Steven, Rod, Phil & Annie, Mark, Abi, Lesley, Adrian, Carole and John. They did between them; posters, printing leafletting (22,000 is one hell of a lot of tree) canvassing, covering polling stations, and getting out the vote.

I'd like to thank Ewart Johnson for at least trying to run a campaign with virtually no help, and doing so with good humour. You had to have a sense of humour to walk about all day on polling day with a bright tartan waistcoat on. As one of my helpers said, "It's a pity Ewart didn't get out more, it would have done us a power of good."

I'd like to thank my Liberal Democrat opponent... but I'm not going to. The lazy-arsed swine never did a thing. No leaflets, posters, canvassing... didn't even bother to come to the count. But I suppose they performed a democratic function in giving my anti-war vote somewhere to put their cross.

I'd like to thank the Labour Party Front Bench... but I'm not going to do that either. They were a total bloody shambles, and as someone said in my comments column... 'a fish rots from the head'. It is time for Blair (and Blairism) to get off the stage. The people have spoken, go before they start to scream. We have seen some good Labour candidates defeated yesterday, and they didn't deserve to be stabbed in the back by their own party. If the opposition were not so deeply mistrusted, it could have been much worse. The bigger fear is that Cameron is giving the right no outlet as he imitates Blair, and the knuckledraggers are the biggest gainers there.

Last... but by no means least, I reserve a giant thank you to the 1591 people who voted for me to continue to represent them on behalf of the Labour Party. You deserve better from your Government, but I'll keep on getting on their case and trying to create a better Bearwood. Much to do, and we start today.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

The Last Post

This will be my last opportunity to blog before tomorrow's election, and I would like to publicly thank the people who have been out knocking doors and delivering leaflets. I never like to 'count' the votes before they're cast, and the last two weeks behaviour by the Government have surpassed themselves even by their standards in an effort to take everyone down with the ship.

I'll be back on Friday... but it might be as Citizen Bob Piper! Best of luck to all Labour candidates.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

There's only one Bosco Jancovic...

It was 25 years today...

I was 'ratted'on the way back from London. On current showing it'll be a bloody sight longer than 25 years until the world sees Aston Villa do that again.

It's OK... the BNP would ONLY kill tens of thousands...

Well, some decent knockabout stuff after the last post eh? I don't actually disagree with much of what the people at Blairwatch were saying actually; just a slight difference of opinion on tactical voting. However... one contemptible piece of dogshit (sorry, contributor) who calls him or herself 'goatchurch' is astonishing for a site which has fairly liberal views. Defending his/her stance of encouraging people to vote for the BNP, goatchurch says that the BNP would have opposed the war in Iraq because "...the BNP wants to harm non-whites only within our national borders. How many do you think they could kill? A few tens of thousands?"

In fact, goatchurch uses the very same stupid calculator as Blair, who says that Saddam Hussein would have killed more than the British and the US, so the war is justified. But what I really cannot believe is that some of these people are suggesting it is OK to elect the BNP.... because they would only kill tens of thousands of immigrants in Britain!!!

Well, perhaps the liberals will explain that one to me.

Update: I'm now getting e-mails from the knuckedraggers telling me how much they support 'goatchurch'.