Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

A long and tough year-end at work is about to come to an unexpectedly early finish (thank goodness) thanks to the excellent sales team I am currently working with... I am minutes from the door and not more than 50 minutes from a bottle of Grouse.

Happy New Year to you all, no matter who you are and what you do it is important to stop sometimes and enjoy the moments that life throws up and remember and enjoy the small things that can make you smile.

Here is one of the things that never fails to bring a smile for me.




Happy New Year to you all! I am looking forward to normal blogging service resuming next week!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Belated Merry Christmas

I just want to wish everybody a (belated) Merry Christmas!!

The last week-and-a-half has been manic and the poor weather conditions have not helped free up any time.

Christmas was a good one this year, with the only let down being the late cancellation of Oxford vs Rushden.  I am optimistic that 2010 will be a year of better news and prospects for all of us.

I am still busy with work, with our business year-end coinciding with calendar year end, but am jotting down a few predictions for 2010 which I hope to share soon.

Take care y'ol!

Monday, December 21, 2009

White Christmas

It has taken three hours to get home on a route that would take about twenty-five minutes in low traffic, and it was like driving on an ice rink the whole way.  I understand colleagues who left over an hour before me to do a longer journey have still not made it home.

I hope everyone is safe and anyone who has had to trek in this weather is OK.

I guess I will be working from home tomorrow now!...  Thank God for laptops and modern technology.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Year And A Bit In Blogging

Christmas is coming, and work is picking up for year end, so my opportunities to blog may become a bit limited over the next few weeks.  There are a few end of year posts I wanted to do, and this is the first.  Here, very simply is a bit of link-love to my past self over the last year and a bit... Dan's best bits so to speak (calm down ladies).

If your new to my blog, here's what has spewed forth over the past year and a bit, which will maybe give you an idea of what I am about, or, for those who visit a little more regularly provide a nice trip down memory lane.

December 2008
Should We Try Something A Little Different
National Anthems

January 2009
Worried about civil liberties in the UK? Got 6 minutes...
Is your number plate illegal?
Whatcha gonna do?

February 2009
The Home Secretary is ripping off Tax Payers
If the system is broke, why don't we fix it?
Are you an alcoholic?

March 2009
Who will pay for the EU?
Job cuts to end by Easter?
Letter to a Tory
Whips
An Invitation to Jury Team
Hannan bitch-slaps Brown in EU Parliament
Left wing PM poll closes

April 2009
Queen to step down as Monarch
G20 result - in my humble opinion
The voice of the Prime Minister
Observation
What is the greatest human invention of all time?

May 2009
Retirement age to be moved to 70?
MP's expenses, once again
Honour amongst thieves
Constitutional Mischief
Should we seperate the Executive from Parliament?

June 2009
Could Parliament vote to dissolve itself?
Should we look to have an elected upper house - part 1
Labour - wrong again
The Wet Parliament
Chicken soup for The Devil, A Tory and The King

July 2009
The phantom street light caller-inner
Did CNN capture Michael Jacksons ghost on camera?

August 2009
Female Genital Mutilation

September 2009
David Cameron speech on reducing the cost of government.
We are not paedophiles!
Did David Cameron do wrong, or did he act just like the rest of us?
The problem(s) with the Liberal Democrats
Voting = bad, terrorism = good... got that?

October 2009
An open letter to the people of Ireland
Writing strategy for Dave... Not!
Northern Ireland Assembly votes in favour of referendum on Lisbon.
On the side of Angels

November 2009
Cameron, Conservatives and The EU
David Camerons new EU policy - my verdict
Pictures from Westminster
An interesting thought
My Agenda

December 2009
Climategate: Caught green handed - Monckton report
A few receipts that stand out

Recommended Reading

Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

Shane Greer says James Macintyre is a liar and third rate journalist.

Devils Kitchen says follow the money to see where the funding priorities are in climate research.

Jess The Dog has a guest post from Borat.

The Telegraph says Kate & Gerry McCann have spoken out about their heartbreaking third Christmas without Madeline.

And finally, Subrosa has an excellent example of recycling which fits nicely with the festive season.

Enjoy!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Serious Twitterholic

My jaw dropped.  No new words needed, here's an extract of what I just read on the Telegraph:

As paramedics attempted to revive her son Bryson after he was found floating face down in a swimming pool, Shellie Ross sent out a message on Twitter , asking her followers: "Please pray like never before, my 2 yr old fell in the pool."

Five hours later, when her son was pronounced dead, she again took to the Twitter site to update her 5,000 followers.

"Remembering my million dollar baby," she wrote.

Moments later, she posted a photo of her son on the site.

Her use of Twitter as her son lay dying provoked outrage among the blogging community in the US.

Police in Florida said they were aware of the "tweets" and would be looking into them as part of their investigation into the drowning....
You can follow this detached technophobe on Twitter.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

If Not Lisbon, Then Rome

From Doug Carswell's Blog:

Today I introduce a Bill in the House of Commons that would give the people a direct vote on Britain's membership of the European Union; the European Union Membership (Referendum) Bill.

All three political parties promised us a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. Yet it never happened.

For thirty years, it's been left to politicians and diplomats to determine our Euro policy. No one under the age of 53 has had the chance to vote in a referendum on it. I think now it's time to let the people decide.
The odds are very much stacked against the forces arguing for democracy and a referendum, but Mr Carswell is a persuasive man.

Hypocrites

Prince Charles and Gordon Brown charter seperate flights to Copenhagen.

So to "off set" this 6.4 tons of CO2, which is an additional 5.2 tons than would have been produced if they had taken a scheduled flight they both now need to write a cheque to one of Al Gore's GIM investment Carbon Credit companies.

Part Of The Reason Why I am So Broke...

I have just stolen this graph from Mark Bathgate from Coffee House, and added the two points of reference.


Fig. 1 - Approx date my wife and I decided that we would get married in a very beautiful spot in Ireland.

Fig 2 - Actual date of wedding and of when most of the payments in Euro's was made.

The devaluation of Sterling hit us hard and very sharply as the favourable x-rate was slashed.

This is not the full story of why I am broke, to disclose it would result in a prompt ending of said marriage, and I am actually rather in love still; so I won't risk it.  (Plus rising cost of living and taxation along with pay reductions have not helped at all.) The moral of the post, like the disclaimers say, rates may go up as well as down - it is a risk.

Recommended Reading

Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

John Redwood MP sets out the moral condundrum at the heart of the Global Warming theory.

Doug Carswell MP bemoans the UKs Judicial activists and calls for reform in the new British Bill of Rights.

Patently sets out a new manifesto for a new politics.

Watts Up With That is keeping an eye on the behaviour of search engines Google and Bing.

A Tory writes to BA cabin crew.

And finally Mark Bathgate says inflation is on the rise, and may soon hit 4%.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

FGM Update

Finally some good news to write about.

The BBC is reporting that Uganda has now outlawed the brutal practice of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) - the excruciating practice of removing the clitoris of young women to make them “more suitable for marriage”.

I only became aware of the practice this year after watching a televised documentary, but my wife and I were moved to tears watching the practice take place. I did write about it earlier in the year after subsequently reading more material from elsewhere. There is plenty on the internet about it. I do sincerely hope the last few remaining countries where FGM is practiced take a look at Uganda and follow in their example.

More Scare Tactics From Gore

Al Gore speaking to Copenhagen delegates:
"These figures are fresh.  Some models suggest to Dr [Wieslav] Maslowski that there is a 75% chance that the entire northern polar ice cap, during the summer months could be completely ice-free within five to seven years."
Hmmm... Sounds like we should all stop driving to work and write a cheque to one of Al Gore's GIM backed Carbon Trading Firms.  But wait a minute, what's this?

Dr Maslowski replied:
"It's unclear to me how this figure was arrived at, I would never try to estimate likelihood at anything as exact as this"
I am confused now, why would Al Gore say something that is not true?  Isn't the science already settled?
From The Times
Mr Gore’s office later admitted that the 75 per cent figure was one used by Dr Maslowksi as a “ballpark figure” several years ago in a conversation with Mr Gore
So, Mr Gore takes a "ballpark figure" from a conversation and then many years later presents it as data saying that "this data is fresh" and goes further so as to quote a 75% likelihood of an ice-free Arctic.  The summit has become, as predicted, a platform for Climate Change doomsday propaganda with science being presented in the most twisted and perfunctory manner.  That word again for the kids, p-r-o-p-a-g-a-n-d-a, go look it up on Wikipedia

Five to Seven years is always the preferred timeframe for doom from Climatemongers, close enough to evoke fear, far enough away for people to have forgotten about what was said by the time it comes around. 

Monday, December 14, 2009

Well Well Well, Look What Google UK Is Offering In Autosearch Now





What took them so long?

Peer Reviewed Literature, Climategate, Copenhagen, Socialism And Tony Blair

With a big tip of the hat to Mr All Seeing Eye, I would like to direct the attention of fellow flat-earthers to the Popular Technology Blog, and via this link they have published links to 500 peer reviewed science papers supporting the sceptic arguments against "Man-Made" climate change. Further confirmation, not that more was needed that claims of the science being settled is a load of nonsense; propaganda for the limited thinker.

As Ed Begley Jr himself advised, with some ferocity, look for and trust the peer reviewed literature... So it would seem that the science is not settled and that more and more sceptics who have kept quiet for fear of losing grants and being shunned by the scientific community are starting to speak out and push their work to the fore. All of the money has always been for those looking to prove Global Warming and Climate Change, but it seems more than a few scientists along the way felt the evidence did not stack up.

Meanwhile in Copenhagen a merry dance is underway, with the African nations apparently not in a cooperative mood. No surprises there really; at the announcement, rather than the lack of cooperation... I think the deals are already pretty much done and have been for some time, all that is left is a moment for a little theatre. The EU is to pledge £6.5bn in money to poorer nations, I have no idea how much the US is chipping in; there is no way they the poorer nations are walking out the door before a deal is done... but after a few days of "tough negotiations" Brown, Miliband et al can come back and claim that they persevered, endeavoured and fought against all the odds and finally came back with a deal that saved the world, well with a little help but more about that nearer the end. Like I say, it is all theatre.

I got to thinking earlier today about how Government debt has doubled in the few years Brown has been PM and it got me angry to think that £1.5bn of our money has been pledged to poorer counties in the "fight against climate change"... not because I have any desire to see poor nations struggle, but because it mirrors almost exactly the kind of backwards policy that is executed and which is killing the UK. Basically poorer nations in Africa are denied the opportunity to sell us many, many products under EU regulations, most notably the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Instead of making good money by trade, they are handed welfare instead.  This is a protectionist measure that we are told keeps our food prices down, which does not really make sense because market forces demand that with greater supply that prices fall. Anyway, we deny Africa the chance to trade and the opportunity work their way out of poverty and prosperity. Then when there is some political grandstanding to be done, we dangle a few billion under the noses of the African Governments, and say dance to our tune and we will hand you a cheque.

It is very similar to how the benefits and unemployment system in the UK makes it very difficult for people to gain benefit from working should their skills or circumstances rule out anything much better than a minimum wage position. It's being paid to rely on the British State.  What possible motivation is there if you are ill educated and trapped on a sink estate to go to work, for an extra £5 or £10 a week.  Africa needs to be able to sell to Europe the fruits of it's Labour and be allowed to earn a decent and fair sum for doing so, then we would not need to cut cheques and patronise... plus the other million reasons why trade and work is better than charity and welfare.

It's Brown and the EU I am angry with, we have kept the poor in poverty with the CAP, and like the well known saying goes, aid work has become about taking money from the poor people in rich countries and handing it over to the rich people in poor countries. The world community has socialised the Third World, and through Socialism they are doomed to be poor and downtrodden forever.

But back home and on that £1.5bn, I may have missed it but I do not recall that number being debated in Parliament, and I do not recall a public debate regarding the amount and manner of our charity to poorer nations. Can there really be no law protecting the Tax Payer against such massive pledges from the Prime Minister whilst abroad?  Also, seeing as how the Environment is now a sole competence for the EU, why the hell is Brown pledging more than the other big EU nations; does he not realise yet that the 30% of voters that he polls are going to will vote for his Party or no one come polling day and that the other 70% of us will not be bought, seduced or coerced by any manner devisable and splashing cash we can ill-afford at the moment is going to cost him more voters that it could win him? Where is Mandelson through all of this? Isn’t he supposed to be babysitting the PM when he decides to make decisions?

Anyway, mark my words; the deal will be done on time in Copenhagen, though the cost may just keep going up. I have a theory that Tony Blair’s consolation prize for not getting to be EU President will be to step in at the last minute and claim to be the man who brokers the deal with whoever the rogue nation who threatens to derail the show is, probably India…Cue Noble Prize and more speaking engagements.   He is already over there as the guest of an NGO.  Whilst they are all enjoying their jolly the rest of us will keep the debate going and be thinking about ways to cut our debts so that we can get by during this recession, and furthermore because we know that we have even more Government Debt that we will need to pay off soon. And with the Bankers jetting off to low tax havens now, that leaves the rest of us to clean up and pay for the mess.

Recommended Reading

Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

Charlotte Gore thinks we should abolish Socialism.

Prodicus says that Labour are finished, and even Joanna Lumley as leader could not save them.

The Times says the EU has granted the CIA the power to look at all of our bank accounts.

The Tap has two video's from Copenhagen one where a band of youths invade a meeting he Lord Monckton is attending and so brands them the Hitler Youth, and the other for the day after when he confronts the group the following day.

And finally, Plato has the graphs that argue the hockey-stick Michael Mann graph.  Fighting graphs with graphs it seems.

Enjoy!

Update 11am: Amended - my fault, poor typing... as discussed in the comments

Free Daily Email

Just looking through the Google Stats a moment ago, and saw that aside from variations of sentences containing the word "climategate" a lot of people came here whilst searching for "Daniel1979".

So I thought I would just put up a quick reminder that for those who would like to, you can subscribe to a free daily email or to this blog in your reader of choice by selecting the appropriate option from the sidebar.  These are powered by Feedburner who provide the T&C's.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Funny That

In May 2009 The Daily Telegraph began publishing details of expenses claimed by MP's on expenses.

On 21st May, East Surrey MP Peter Ainsworth sent this letter to the expenses office:

























Sunlight is proving to be the best disinfectant in regards to MP's Expense claims.

Admin (2)

OK, all is about done, or is as done as it is going to be.

I hope you like the new layout and format, I wanted something a little more unique and this is what I have ended up with. I have less control now over things like font sizes, which is all set and imported, but I can live with that. Gone is the reaction buttons, which do not seem to want to work on non-standard templates. Also gone is the twitter-meme function, which does not seem to want to work on this format, but I will keep looking into it to restore quick RT function.

I hope people like the new name, I was racking my brain for something new - but some of the great names I came up with appear elsewhere on the internet and were not unique. I believe Governmentitus is unique, and is just a better sounding blog name than "Daniel1979 Blog" and fits with the general theme of this blog.

If you are having any issues, please leave a comment or email me daniel1979blog@gmail.com.

For those how are curious to learn more, read on...



I made the decision about a month ago to just look around and see what improvements might be available out there on the internet, and I quickly came to find the Blogger Templates Site. This got me thinking about looking for a more radical change, and had the added bonus of being completely free. So, if anyone is thinking about a change, this is the site I would recommend. If you do have cash to spend, still take a look as all of the designers have links from the templates they have provided to blogger. For example, this new template was created by Rays Creations India, who is linked from the Blogger Template Page and also from the bottom of this blog now.

From there it needed testing, so I set up a new test blog. Along the way, I came across a new format that was perfect for one of my other ventures, Football Banter, so I actually switched my focus across to updating that blog, which was successful. Here, my method and tips if you’re thinking about having a change yourself.  Importing a new template in itself is not difficult, it is simply importing a file to the HTML screen, but there are a few issues if this is a transition rather than starting a new blog from scratch.

1. Set up a testblog, with posts and widgets so that you can get an idea of how the transition will work.

2. Copy all HTML code from any widgets you have set up, and all the url's from blogrolls. Assume all widgets will be lost, as they might well be and will have to be re-established.

3. Remember to hunt through your existing HTML code for any add-ins that you have, such as Google Analytics and Twitter Meme Codes.

4. I used MS Word, to copy and paste all HTML code to, with little notes as to where to copy & paste to and from.

5. Attempt a transition on the test blog from the Blogger standard format to new format.

6. Then read the FAQ section on the blogger template site... There are a few standard issues which are all easily fixed. Also read the comments section on Blogger Templates, as others may have experienced the same and the answer may be there already.

7. If you have made changes to the Test Blog set up that you want to use on your main blog, save it and use that file when doing the main transition.

8. Update your main blog.

9. IMPORTANT - when adding or changing HTML code, always remember to click to preview BEFORE you save. This will not allow a preview, or will show in a screen how the blog will look based on the most recent changes.. You might not like it. You can then click to undo edits which will revert the HTML code back to the last saved instance.

10. IMPORTANT - Thing look better, but what you can do with the format interms of tweeking is now a bit more limited, and will require playing around with the HTML to change text colours etc.. There is also a limitation on how much can be changed under the Creative Licence - You get a free template so long as it remains pretty much as provided

Post transition things work in pretty much the same way on the dashboard as they do on a standard blogger template, so there is no new things to learn from that perspective.

Admin (1)

With a big sense of nervousness, I shall now be playing with the blog format to upgrade to my new format.  People should feel free to have a look around still as this will not affect what I am doing.  If things start to disappear, and the layout suddenly changes, you can know that it is not your browser or computer, but me tinkering. 

Should the World Wide Web stop working in the next two hours, that probably is my fault and the whole experiement will have gone wrong.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Climategate Poll

Just to confirm the numbers now that the poll has closed.

Question: The Climategate Email Revelation Has...

Answers, with responses:

Made no difference to my opinions, man-made CO2 is affecting our climate and we must cap it - 1

Made some difference, but I still believe climate change is linked to CO2 - 1

Has made me question if the science is really there, and if I have been lied to - 7 (9%)

Confirmed my recent suspicions that it was all a big scam, the science does not add up - 25 (32%)

Made no difference, I have always known it was a load of old tosh - 42 (55%)

Recommended Reading 12th December 2009




Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

Dungeekin has the solution to Climate Change.

Ian Parker-Joseph says the betrayers are becomming the betrayed.

Ed West says the Tory Taliban are intent on driving the Libertarians from the ranks of the Conservative Party.

IMHO thinks hell must now be frozen over... becasue it is snowing in Houston, Texas.


And finally, The Daily Mash says that the Tories are to but the Chancellor a new house, after he delivered a PBR that suited the Tory leadership.
Enjoy!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

"G5" Aiming For Christmas #1 In Charts



Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Post script: If you would like to display this on your blog, please email me for the HTML code.

Taxi For Ming

Nothing illegal or headline grabbing in this observation I am sure, but me thinks Sir Ming Campbell has tried to, or perhaps had to bend the rules somewhat.

Under his Additional Cost Allowance which is there to cover the cost of an MP’s second home Sir Ming has been charging for a taxi service. This is costing the tax payer anywhere between £60 and £220 per month, typically. This BTW is on top of an additional monthly claim in the region of £125 for “Parking” which one presumes means he is therefore in possession of a car.

Why is Sir Menzies charging us for the taxi’s under his Second Home Expenses when there is an uncapped Travel Expense system which he is already using to claim back his mileage and air travel?

I am going to speculate, and I stress I am speculating - that the Travel Allowance rules state that taxi services are refundable when a standard mileage based cost is applied, but Sir Menzies service invoices have related administration costs, and thus this could prove to be an example of an MP fitting the cost of a comfortable and/or convenient service into a different column to get around a particular rule.... I understand that Sir Menzies has suffered with illness in recent years which affected his hip and I would not wish him any discomfort; but did he and others in the Commons not write the rules in which the MP's themselves do not seem able to meet? 

http://www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/GreenBook0309.pdf

A Few Receipts That Stand Out....

From Shaun Woodward, a £429 phone bill from BT which seems a bit steep, but that's nothing next to his £1,056 Electricity Bill, labelled a "Green Electricity Bill" -

See Here.






















Here is the infamous Jacqui Smith bill where hubby Richard had put in for Dirty Movies...
This and the rest are HERE.


















... The thing is, Ms Smith accepted the mistake for claiming the additional packages as an error, and an embarrassing one at that.  However, other Virgin bills of £57.25 in December 2008 and £73.50 in July were claimed for in full.  Seems the real error here was that Hubby Richard only sent in the itemised page for the one they got caught on... Perhaps in the interests on honesty these should have also been submitted so that the phone package and broadband could have been itemised for?

We also kitted out the Smith Redditch residence with a 32 inch HD LCD to the tune of £555.74... this because Jacqui Smith declares her Sister's home in London as her Primary residence, so hubby and the kids were free to enjoy a free TV....




Well, at least the picture quality on any future pay-per-view films will be fantastic!

According to my work colleagues (half the office is looking through these today with venom in their eyes)... the BBC are reporting that Quentin Davies tried to claim £20k for a Bell Tower... Well he did, here is the receipt...




The fees office declined to pay the full amount, but did cough up £5,376.91.  Perhaps Mr Davies can explain to us how a Bell Tower is a wholly and necessary requirement of him being an MP?




Lembit Opik gets a special mention as he happily renovated and upgraded his second home with a £6,655 contribution from the taxpayer towards his £12,955 refurbishment in one sitting...

See HERE.







All of the work must have worked up an appetite.  MP's are still allowed to claim up to £400 per month for "food" without receipts.  Lembit however managed to get in a claim for £2,000, no doubt back charging for an "allowance" he had not claimed for a while. 



He must be one hungry bugger to have consumed that much food!  But here is the thing; he did it twice in one year.   A final claim of £800 ensured that the Lib Dem MP claimed the maximum £4,800 during the year on this particular "allowance".  This is not even the most interesting thing in his claims.  It seems the Lib Dem MP had some electrical problems, so he called out an Emergency Electrician... but why on earth did he call someone who had to travel hundreds of miles to do the work??



(Click to enlarge)

That requires some special Lib Dem Logic!... I can only wonder allowed what the Carbon output must have been.  Not very considerate on Mother Earth was it.

If I get chance, more will come later on.  Feel free to email or leave any that you may have caught in the comments.




MP's Expenses - The New Batch

These are online now for the latest period, go check out what your MP has claimed, HERE.

I got to page 2 and have just dicovered we are paying for my MP to have her Ironing done! (HERE)

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Random Thoughts #3

Now that Chris Mounsey (aka Devil's Kitchen) is the leader of The Libertarian Party UK, I wonder how long will it be before he gets an invite onto BBC's Question Time?

I Probably Missed Nothing... Right?

I have pretty much missed all of the PBR reporting today because of work (however, I am more grateful to still be in work that to have had the time to have caught it though!) I did catch a brief summary earlier online at the end of lunch so I kind of have a feel for what I will be heading home to on the news tonight. In my mind, it is not too important to know the in's and out's this minute, as what tends to happen with the Budget and the PBR is that it takes a few days for the analysts to sift through and find the real details rather than the fluff announced at the dispatch box.  I also want to add that it's a good thing as well that the Treasury left the VAT announcement until 9th December, nothing like giving the nation a whole 10 full working days, (plus the Christmas period) to implement an entirely new Tax rate on top of the tax accounting rules due to come into force on 1st January 2010... Very considerate and visionary of the man charged with setting the course for economic recovery.

With the announcements and what it will likely mean, I already feel from behind my veil of ignorance that I will probably be stuck to my previously stated mindset; that the UK will again not be out of recession after Q4, and my guess is that it will be Q2 2010 at least before a return to growth. Though, given how long it we have been in recession and potential impact of the PBR I guess Q1 2010 could be realistic, but I still harbour doubts so will not change my outlook; well, not yet anyway. I am also guessing that in a few days time, when the likes of John Redwood and Fraser Nelson have dug through the details, whatever the top line cut figures are on my TV tonight will actually be revealed to be lower, and/or the proposed tax hikes actually deeper into our pockets... Like I say, I will wait for a few of the better economic journalists and organisations to have a good pick through, as they tend to do a pretty good job these days interpreting these budget announcements back into English.

Another thought occurs; weren’t the online MSM sites promising a big expenses scandal today? Has this been slipped out the back door under the cover of the PBR...? I will have to see about getting online later and having a search for the news (gossip).

Recommended Reading - 09-Dec-09

Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

James Higham talks about the roots of European anti-Semitism.

Angry Old Man recalls some wise words from President Klaus.

Iain Martin says that "authorities" knew in 2005 that tripartite regulation would not work.

Heresy Corner laments the latest government cut; the MOD are to stop investigating UFO sightings.

Raedweld says that Labours ineptitude with our economy means that George Osborne will be kept out of the key decision making meetings of the G8 when he is Chancellor.

And finally, The Boiling Frog has a sense of Deja Vu.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Copenhagen T-Shirts?

This is Maggie Thauersköld, Sweden’s most prominent climate-sceptic blogger



























Stolen from Roger Helmer

Thinking Out Loud

I am very excited, I have managed to download my prospective new template and have done some testing and I am loving the new format.

I may lose some of the existing functions, such as "reactions" and the re-tweet, but I think the improved layout will be worth it!  Anywho, what is sticking in my mind is, leaving the url as is, I am tempted to go with a new blog name (which as yet, I have not decided on).  Would anyone object to me changing the blog name?  I think "Daniel1979 Blog" is a little boring and not very eye-catching, nor memorable... I would like something a little more pithy.

If Christmas shopping can be kept to a minimum, I will probably look to roll it out here this weekend.

Any thoughts?

Monday, December 07, 2009

Exodus

Hmmm.... 1,000 bankers quit RBS for rivals, just as the Government is hinting strongly about punitive taxes.



Who could have possibly seen that coming!

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Doug Carswell - Referendum Man


I seem to be behind on this, but I have just learned that Douglas Carswell MP, one of the few MP's in Parliament that listens to what people are asking for and then tries to deliver is seeking to bring about a Private Members Bill to the floor of the House of Commons providing the people of the U.K. a referendum on membership of the EU.

Private Members Bills are a tool for MP's who are not on the front benches to introduce legislation, but tend to have a low success rate and little floor time is provided.  There is going to be limited time available in Parliament with the lead up to the General Election as well.  However, with an issue as big as continued membership of the EU and with the right momentum there is a chance that Mr Carswell with enough public and media support could force the issue in Parliament.  We should assume that the Whips will not be in any mood to help Mr Carswell in this cause, so it is down to people to make their voices heard and for the general population to shout out that we do indeed want this Bill to be passed to that we can have our say on EU Membership.  It is time the people of this country are allowed a say on what we do and do not want.

Mr Carswell's piece, where he sets out his intentions is here.

I for one wish Mr Carswell every success, I hope he can succeed and help us get what so many of us have longed for, for a long time.  He will be a very popular man if he can!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

New Climategate Petition



HERE is the link to this petiton, please feel free to spread the word on this.

Hattip: Daily Referendum.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Climategate: Caught Green-Handed - Monckton Report

This is not so much Recommended Reading as it is Required Reading.  The Science & Public Policy Institute has released THIS REPORT which analyses the Climategate emails and demonstrates how the Science of climate change is not settled; and how the email revelations have in fact hidden then truth about what is going on with our environment and our climate.




The report delves into the science, but is written as best as possible for those of us without PhD's.  There are some interesting recommendations at the end, all of which seem reasonable to me.  If we are to subject the world to carbon taxes in the middle of the worst economic downturn for several generations, it should be based on global, open and verifiable science with the raw data available to everybody on earth to be able to analyse and scrutinise.

Fellow bloggers, facebooker's and twitterers, please can you pass these links along so as to ensure it reaches as broad an audience as possible.  The science is not concluded, the stakes are high and time is of the essence to force the debate before Copenhagen.  Politics and politicians have put us in this position, it is now time for people to voice their opinions and concerns, because if we do not we know that the politicians will do what as they have sought to all along.

Some of the conclusion (but not all) from the report is reproduced below [I copy & pasted the raw data from the report, I felt no need for "tricks" or any "fudge factor"]

In public policy terms, the revelation that the international scientific and political establishment has been inventing, bending, distorting, manipulating, hiding, blocking, and destroying scientific data for the sake of advancing a narrow, extremist, and bitterly anti-Western political viewpoint cannot be safely ignored.



Climate science is too important to be left to politicized scientists, just as climate politics is too important to be left to unscientific politicians.


The first step is to close the Climate Research Unit (and perhaps the University of East Anglia with it), to dismiss all of its personnel, and not to allow any of them to be funded by taxpayers ever again. Scientific fraud and corruption on the scale that has now been revealed must be firmly rooted out and prevented from recurring.


Those responsible for the deliberate blocking, altering, concealing, or destroying of scientific data must be put on trial – to use James Hansen’s term – for “high crimes against humanity”. For it is on the word of crooks and racketeers such as these that, in the name of addressing the non-problem that they had invented and fostered and festered, the Third World has been flung into food riots and mass starvation by the doubling of world food prices that followed the biofuel scam that the “global-warming” profiteers invented as just one of a bewildering array of boondoggles to enrich themselves at the expense of the little guy, who, as always, suffers when the political elite merely exploit him when it is their duty to serve him.


Let the climate criminals stand trial, and let them be fined for offenses under the Freedom of Information laws, and let them be imprisoned for their fraudulent tampering with scientific data, and for their suppression of results uncongenial to their politicized viewpoint, and for the sheer venom with which they have publicly as well as privately denigrated all those scientists with whom they disagreed, and for the insouciance with which they interfered with editors of scientific journals and with the process of the UN’s climate panel itself.

Recomended Reading - 03-Dec-09


Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:






Steve McIntyre's blog time-lines some of Willis Eschenbachs FOI emails with some of the hacked CRU emails.

Subrosa has an interesting quote.

Charlotte Gore no longer wishes to be a Lib Dem blogger.

The Clamour of the Times points to Carbon Fraud in Denmark, soon to be hosts for the Copenhagen Summit.

And Finally, The Daily Mail says that giving cakes to hospital patients is no longer considered safe.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The EU Commission Now Wants To Know What YOU Think About Lisbon

Quote from the Secreteriat's-General webpage:
The Lisbon Treaty introduces a new form of public participation in European Union policy shaping, the European citizens’ initiative, which enables one million citizens who are nationals of a significant number of Member States to call directly on the European Commission to bring forward an initiative of interest to them in an area of EU competence. Before citizens can start exercising this new right, a few ground rules and procedures have to be laid down in an EU regulation.
Given the importance of this new tool for citizens, civil society and stakeholders across the EU, the Commission has opened a broad public consultation in order to seek the views of all interested parties on how the citizens' initiative should work in practice.


The Green Paper, which launches this consultation, gives an overview of the legal, administrative and practical issues that will need to be addressed by the Regulation and asks a number of questions to which interested parties are invited to respond by 31st January 2010.
Here is the email address, ECI-Consultation-citizen@ec.europa.eu  which says nothing at all about not accepting emails of an abusive or sweary nature *hint*.  I shall compose mine in the morning, though I suspect know the language will not be of a suitable nature for this blog.

They wouldn't let us have a referendum, and now they want to know what we think - Soviet EUnion Government is upon us.



Reality Has Become A Commodity

Al Gore Confronted In Chicago

Novembers Top Referrals

Thank you to all bloggers who continue to send traffic this way, it is very much appreciated.  As always, here is the Top Ten referrers for November, with movement of position indicated in brackets.

1. (+5)  Muffled Vociferaction

2. (-1)  Letters from a Tory

3. (-1)  The Voice of the Resistance

4. (New)  BBC Blogs

5. (+11)  SNP Tactical Voting

6. (-1)  An All Seeing Eye

7. (+1)  EU Referendum

=8. (New)  Football Banter

=8. (-4)  Scunnert Nation

10.  (-7)  Unenlightened Commentary

=11. Subrosa, =11. Rantin Rab, 13. Daily Referendum, 14. John M Ward, 15. Barking Spider, 16. CatoSays 17. The Red Rag, 18. Events Dear Boy, Events, 19. Twitter, =20. Lord Elvis, =20. The Vote of the Resistance.


Farewell to Wardog and Advanced Media Watch who have stopped blogging this month, and also to Lord Elvis's blog, although he will continue to blog over on The Voice of the Resistance.  It is sad to so many blogs disappearing and I wish the people behind them well.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Google Ethics?

They talk about it all the time on the TV, Google's motto official or otherwise is "Don't be evil".

So, by extension, despite hundreds of thousands, if not millions of sites referring to and writing about Climategate, why is it not a valid "query selection" that they will automatically offer in their search box? Does Google consider the ready availability of information questioning the CO2 link to Climate Change as "evil"? This is not new to today; this has been the case all week as I have tried a number of times using google to see what is coming out new on this story around the world. I thought earlier in the week that it was suspicious, but put it down to being a new topic and my readiness to see a conspiracy; I am no longer alone in this query.

I am not sure what it is about this story that has Google worked up, but are they trying to help hide an important scientific argument, or is it that they feel they now control the direction of free speech on the internet? Either way, it’s not very impartial and not at all fitting with their self written lofty ethics. Shame on you.

Google UK:

Google Germany:



Google Ireland:


Google France:



It's not just Europe, see Google Canada:



God bless America for protecting free speech:


Dr North - Googlegate?
James Delingpole - Googlegate?
Christopher Booker - Climategate: Is this the worst scientific scandal of our generation?

1st Year Blogoversary


One year in the blogosphere.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday Caption Competition - 27-Nov-09


Farage In EU Parl - Another Great Video



I have posted a number of videos from Nigel Farage before, this one will not disappoint. Firstly Mr Farage delivers another soaring speech that is typical of him, but also he reveals (well, I didn't know this..) that Baroness Ashton is not only an awful choice for the post to which she has been appointed (or, is perfect if you wish to flip it on it's head) but she was the Treasurer for the CND in the 1980's when sizable and questionable donations were received.

Keep watching after Mr Farage sits down. The reaction from those in the chamber to a speech that broadly mirrors the opinions of the people of the UK reveals exactly why the UK must leave the EU, for we, and our views are not appreciated nor are they welcomed.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Climategate - US Congress To Investigate



Unlike the British news outlets, the US news is now reporting on the Climategate emails, it's not just Fox (video above) CBS is also giving this some prominence on their TV news and website.  Now the US Congress has decided that it is serious enough to warrant an investigation. Gerald Warner has more HERE

It is a reflection on the UK political scene that these emails have been hacked from a British University, involve British scientists and yet the media is largely apathetic to the news and is not giving it much attention.  Furthermore, that a foreign legislature has felt the need to look into the actions before the UK Government, and probably in that absence of any kind of UK Government investigation.  There may be much more to be revealed in this story, as it seems that New Zealand's research data may have been "massaged" to present the results desired rather than to represent the true conclusions of science.

I am troubled by that claims of a scientific nature are coming under a cloud of ambiguity.  Science is science, it is the function of uncovering the facts of how things work and explaining and reproducing those effects.  If the CO2 cheer-leaders all act like Ed Begley Jr in the above clip, they will lose the argument. 

There is, I think a general acceptance that we should not pump chemicals into the air, and dump pollutants into the sea.  There is a tangible and explainable science to recycling our materials.  The CO2 argument is different, CO2 is a naturally occurring gas, a combination of two of Earths basic and necessary elements, Carbon and Oxygen; Cloroflouorocarbons have no history of abundance in our environment.  CO2 has been around on earth for millions of years, but Climatologists are making claims on two decades of primary research. 

We owe it to ourselves to be crystal clear about science, especially when we are set to make laws and take actions that affect all of us on a daily basis.  In fact, "we" are not making those decisions, the decisions are being made again by "experts" and unelected leaders.  Beyond a reasonable doubt is probably the best term that should be applied.  As far as I can tell, nobody in the world has been able to show a negative effect of CO2 using sound science.  Computer models that have been presented have been exposed as having implanted data applied to fill in gaps that if removed lead to different conclusions; Graphs that supposedly plot data are shown to not represent the real data at all, and I keep reading that Weather Station data is presented in a selective way.  Why also are so called "Climatologists" so reluctant to release raw data behind their research?  If other Scientist cannot reproduce your results, it is not Science, it is a claim.

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to the people of America, or at least the few of you that that read this blog.

We do not celebrate Thanksgiving in the UK, but we know all about it from watching your sitcoms and hospital dramas.  It seems like a fun day.

Have a lovely day.

Recommended Reading

Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:

Tarquin takes Peter Hitchens to task over the Monarchy

Ian Parker-Joseph says that the Euro-Federalists are moving quicker than ever now; and names Daniel Hannan as a progressive communitarian.

Subrosa says that News Corp and Microsoft are discussing an internet tie up deal.

Roger Helmer introduces to us an exciting renewal energy technology.

Tory Bear calls for a new Conservative leader.... In Scotland.

And Finally, JuliaM has the story of a spiritualist ghost-buster, Merseyside Police and a tribunal.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Best Placed Economy In The G7...

...Best placed of those needing an IMF bailout loan help that is.




So, was he lying? Was he so incompetent not to know? or, is he simply deluded?

A good summary, plus more blogable graphs from Mark Bathgate over on Coffee House, who is filling in now Fraser has moved up to the Ivory Tower. 


200 years ago, Gordon Brown would have been dragged from Parliament and shot for gross incompetence and betrayal of the nation.

100 years ago, Gordon Brown would have been unceremoniously relieved from his position and lampooned forever as the profligate buffoon he really is.

Today, he is able to command a state funded broadcaster to dictate the mantra that he has saved the world, whilst selling out the poorest to a legacy of state dependency and crippling taxation; meanwhile, yet again, continental Europe, with Browns complicity has its sights on destroying the free enterprise initiative of the City of London, the very heartbeat and soul of our strength and identity as a world trading nation. 

And yet, somehow, in a way that future historians will understand less than us, he somehow still gets double figures in opinion polls.

Busy Day

Thinking ahead to next year, it is my intention to reformat Daniel1979 Blog to something a bit more unique, moving away from the standard blogger layouts.  It must be said, I am a complete duffer with such things as HTML so in this vein I have been looking about and doing some homework to what is available to pauper bloggers like myself on the Internet.  Anyway, I stumbled upon a fantastic format that immediately seemed to suit one of my other ventures, Football Banter, and tonight, with just a couple of hours graft, I have managed to roll out the new format over there.  For those of a Football, Blogging and/or Football Blogging persuasion, I hope that you like it.



Hopefully, all of the changes and potential problems have been identified upfront, and thus, the hard work is now done.  I have to say there is a wealth of solutions available, albeit with licensed conditions to those of us on the blogger platform, god bless the internet!

Changes will come here ready for New Year, but no concrete decisions have been made.  Though the url will remain, I am also toying with the idea that "Daniel1979 Blog" is not the most eyecatching nor enticing blog name and a top level name change will probably be accommodated.  I might even drop the "1979" in favour of coming out, so to speak; but in truth will in all likelihood look for something a little more whimsicle.

Add a full shift at the office and it has been a busy day!

President Van Rompuy Haiku

Inspried to leave a comment over on The Boiling Frog's new blog I left this...



We never voted
President Van Rompuy in
Democracy died.


Stop laughing at the back.

Think you can do better?  Then feel free.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Dr Tim Ball Interview On Climategate



Hattip: Anoneumouse

Recommended Reading 24-Nov-09


Here is my latest recommended reading list.

Please note, I do not necessarily agree with these posts and articles, however I found them sufficiently interesting to warrant a recommendation:





William Rees-Mogg says that the EUsceptics are the real friends of Europe.


Tim Collard is mad with the bankers for wanting to end free banking in the UK.


The Mail was the first mainstream paper to give some prominence to the CRU emails...


... Though The Devils Kitchen had already summed things up quite nicely.


The All Seeing Eye reports that the British Navy have fired shots off the coast of Gibraltar.


And finally, Ben Brogan polls his readers as to why no one likes David Cameron.


Enjoy!

First They Were Drowning Toy Puppies...

Now...



Remember, you must be affraid, becuase it makes you easier to govern.

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Poll Tells A Different Story For The Tories

From Politics Home, a poll by Angus Reid

Conservatives - 39%

Labour - 22%

Liberal Democrats - 21%

Others - 18%

This poll would give somewhere around a 170 majority to the Conservatives demonstrating how crazy the current boundaries disparity is, and how different pollsters are able to predict wildly different political scenarios every few days by using slightly different methods and weighting.  This is a new polling firm, and a healthy 2,000 were sampled.  UK Polling Report already has written this up, and they confirm that the pollsters weighting disadvantages Labour, but only very slightly.

Right, now the interesting point on this poll, 18% is a hefty number for the "others" which has generally been sitting anywhere between 12% and 15% for a while, except for a few weeks around the EU elections.  I suspect the biggest chunk goes to the SNP, but what is the UKIP number?  That is going to be telling in the next election as potentially 2 in 3 new UKIP voters will be drawn away from the Conservatives; or at least, that would be my prediction. 

I wonder what the number is that UKIP need to poll before the Conservatives start to look over their shoulders (if they are running polls that splits the "others", and I think it is a safe assumption that they do).  I think from memory UKIP polled a little over 2% at the last General Election, so anything around 5% would be I think a fair improvement at this point, but anything higher still must be a concern for their opponents.  And not just with the Tories; UKIP will be looking to unseat Liberal Democrats in the South as well.  UKIP will not be winning this election, but they are looking like the party that costs others key seats at this election.  They don't need a leader to be out campaigning for them, especially when "Cast-Iron Dave*" keeps driving the EUsceptics moving away from voting Conservative.

170 Majority at the top end, and a niggling annoyance growing at the other.  When If the Conservative number contracts, we will have a very interesting story.

I look forward to reading other bloggers opinions on this, but in the morning.



*This seems to be the settled nickname for him on the blogosphere now.

President Rompuy - 0.008% Legitimate

Sunday, November 22, 2009

My Agenda

Over on SNP Tactical Voting I left a comment on a recent piece about the death of blogging, and in reply Jeff left me a comment, part of which was to say

“…I read your blog but it's not immediately obvious which side of the many fences you come down on which could maybe count against you. It shouldn't but it could…” The full post and comments is HERE.

I don’t disagree with Jeff’s point, but it did make me pause for some thought.

When I started this blog it was after reading a number of other blogs, mostly on MSM sites and although I agreed with much of it, I found it frustrating when issues I though important went uncommented on, and on occasion when important topics were framed in a way that I felt missed the point; whether deliberate or not. It was also started with an ignorance of just how broad the Blogosphere really is. But it was started to be a place for my thoughts and ideas and that was how I wanted it to be.

My voting record and intentions are a matter of record here; I have voted Conservative in the past two General Elections, which are the only two I have been old enough to vote for. I voted Jury Team at the last EU Elections, and UKIP prior to this. With the current Conservative policies on the EU I have resolved that I cannot bring myself to vote for them until the Conservative Party gets a hold of itself over the EU and commits to withdrawal. Jeff is right; my politics are all over the shop, because I vote on the policies and how I see them. My politics do not line up to any of the parties exclusively. This is obviously showing through in my posts.

You will not get party allegiance here. I am broadly of the political Libertarian Right, and when The Conservatives, UKIP, LPUK and even the English Democrats and Jury Team talk about issues I see to be important, they get my support, and when they are not making much sense I will also say when I disagree. I would say the same of the Parties of the Left such as Labour, Lib Dems and the BNP, but I have not found anything I can side with them on; so they will continue to receive my criticism.

I am writing this blog because for many years I have taken an active interest in politics, and the more I read and the more I wanted to take part the more frustrated I became. There was a point when I wanted to get involved with the Conservatives and go knocking on doors, and try and win people and voters over. But, I do not agree with the Conservatives on certain things. I certainly do not agree with their current stance on the EU, and feel sorry for the people that have recently felt that they have been let down. But there is much more than that, the Conservatives are a “broad church” and for that they should be commended, but on policy, it is the same collection opposing factions in Westminster pulling the strings. Their only real strength is their continued presence in Westminster as a non-left wing party. The rise of the internet and with new ideas being expressed, I think their position as the sole power on the right of British politics is going to be severely challenged in the next two decades. Anyway, they do not stand for everything I believe in, no party does, so they will not earn my membership, nor my blog allegiance (bloglegiance).

I believe the state should be small, and that it should be drawn by the people of the people and for the people. The state is currently suffocating people, and I want to argue against this. I believe in the rule of law, and that those laws should be written by democratically elected representatives, and that execution of the law should be done by civilians, and that the law should be applied fairly. I believe that people should be distrustful of the state, and should be able to stand up to the state so as to demonstrate that we are being governed by our kin and our neighbours. I want the state to represent the views of the majority opinion, but to show compassion and understanding to the minority. I want the state to only have as much power as is needed to execute its duties, to legislate and protect the people it represents. I want the state to never believe it is above its own laws or the values of those they serve. I want the state to stay out of the way and out of the lives of individuals and families, I want it to have boundaries and a framework it dare not cross. I want people to be able to live their lives, to exchange information and news freely, to be free to assemble without molestation, for the state to know that it works for the people and is there to serve us, not the other way around. And most importantly, if and when any of the above is infringed upon with or without intention or malevolence, I want the people to be able to throw out the whole rotten lot and appoint a group of people, who, can stand and win office on the strength of their arguments and bring about a new government as mandated by the people. There are measures by which all of the above can be monitored, and in my mind we live in sad and dangerous times.

Unfortunately for me, to be able to blog here and write in defence of my political beliefs, I am unable to put myself into the camp of one party. Yes, I generally feel that none of the political parties can match my lofty ideals, but that as I see it is their malfunction, not mine. Looking across parties, there are bits here and there that I agree with, and in my position I am free to do so. I do not expect my opinions to be universally accepted or understood, but there is always the comment form for people who do visit here to register their opposition. Jeff’s point was that without a tribe in which to belong I may be missing out on a few people’s blog rolls and that that may be costing me some lost traffic. That may be the case, it certainly seems logical. I don’t think that I can bring myself to plead for blog roll links from those who feel that they cannot link here because I am not towing a party line, because there are many who already have linked to me without that fear; plus, I don’t want to. If I am losing traffic it is because I am not as good at this as other bloggers and I know I am not as good a writer as I wish I was. If I get a hit and that person does not come back, I only did half of my job. I have not broken the glass ceiling because I have not been able to entice people to keep reading my musings. For the record, Jeff is a fantastic blogger who is able to write impartially and cogently about a party and cause that he is obviously passionate about, and also then is able to engage in detailed follow up in the comments. If you are not terribly familiar with his blog, please make some time and have a read. There are some brilliant Scottish bloggers, and in my opinion the SNP bloggers are winning the argument for a separation of the UK, an opinion that they are convincing me on that I did not hold a year ago.

So I am not about to join any party, but I am going to try to be clearer about where I stand on certain matters. There are probably a thousand blogs where you can go to get party grass roots and member’s commentary. But come to this blog and you will get my honest assessment, but you can always know by coming here that I am not pushing you towards a particular party. I am not sure if that counts for anything on the political blogosphere, but that’s just how it is.

And as one of my film heroes says “and that’s all I got to say about that.”