Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Friday, 3 June 2016

Can you ever believe Cameron?

Last night, in response to a question in the Sky News interview, Cameron claimed that Turkey was unlikely to meet the criteria to join the EU by the year 3000!

Cameron has fought for Turkish membership of the EU for at least ten years and has made it quite clear that he wanted Turkey to join the EU as fast as possible. In a speech in Ankara, in July 2010, when he said the EU would be stronger with Turkey as a member, and that he would pave the way from Ankara to Brussels.

Turkey is blackmailing the European Union. First, we said we'd give them £3bn,  as part of an agreement on migrants, now we're giving them £6bn. They are now demanding, and they will probably get, visa-free access for 79million people by the end of this year.

Then last night Cameron said 'Ah yeah, but we do have a veto'. We may have, but would Cameron use it after all his previous promises to Turkey and the EU? Especially when Mrs Merkel, who's the real boss of Europe, has said she wants to fast-track them as members of the European Union

Nigel Farage dubbed David Cameron "Dishonest Dave" in an LBC broadcast and said that he doesn't believe a single thing he says any more.

It's definitely time to LEAVE the EU!

Saturday, 23 April 2016

A Convenient Obama Visit

Clearly President Obama is here to help Cameron in his pro EU campaign. Why else would he come, after all, he appears to dislike this country and all it stands for?

The main outcome of his visit, apart from some photographs with the Queen and Prince George for his album, is that he has shown himself to be a hypocrite and has allowed his dislike of this country to to overcome whatever common sense that he might once have had. His main argument for us staying in the EU seems to be that we will be put at the 'back of the queue' when it comes to discussing trade agreements as the US would rather negotiate with one group of 28 nations than with a single country.

I would suspect that anyone else involved in negotiating with the EU would argue the exact opposite, it is far easier to reach agreement with a single country than with a group where they all individually have to concur with the decisions reached by their negotiators. But that aside, Obama won't be president in eight months time, so he can't possibly predict what a future administration might do.

As reported in Breitbart, his view is also contradicted by an official from their Office of International Trade who, in an e-mail said
“This is the first time I’ve heard of the assertion that the UK is too small to have an FTA with the US… clearly the UK is not too small to have an FTA with the US if we have one with Oman.”
But neither is the trade deal with the EU likely in the near future, as Obama told the press that a U.S./EU trade deal is “not going to happen anytime soon”.

In any case, does it matter? We are trading with the US at the moment, apparently without any agreement, and it is difficult to visualise why there should be any change if we left the EU.

Finally, for a laugh, the reply that Obama gave when asked by a student in London what he wanted his legacy to be.
"Saving the world economy from a Great Depression — that was pretty good"
 I thought that was Gordon Brown's line!

Monday, 18 April 2016

Project Fear continues.with Forecasts

Today we had the Treasury forecast that if Brexit happens, we will all be £4300 per household worse off by 2030.

If this is as accurate as recent Treasury forecasts concerning the country's budget and growth for periods of just one financial year, any forecasts as to what might happen after 16 years are just wishful thinking. A recent statement by the 'Remain' campaigners admitted that wages for the lower paid would continue to be depressed due to the high levels of unskilled immigration, so it would seem that the lower paid lose out either way!

By some convoluted thinking, the Chancellor also suggested that taxes would have to rise if we left the EU because we would no longer be getting the present grants from Brussels. But since we paid them the money in the first place, and they took a large cut before paying back some of it in grants, if we kept our taxes at the present level and paid the grants directly, the Chancellor would have the whole of the cut taken by Brussels to start paying off our debts or allowing more spending on the NHS.

Of course, with proper border control and hopefully less immigration than at present, the strain on the NHS would be significantly reduced, under which circumstances the NHS would probably be able to cope without any major budget increase.

But the Treasury is not the only state organisation to be incapable of economic forecasting; the Bank of England is just as bad. For several years running in their annual forecasts, they have suggested that interest rates would start rising within the next six months, when in fact, as far as both savers and borrowers are concerned they are still falling. Now they have suggested that rates would rise in the event of Brexit; is this forecast any better than their previous ones?

It is also suggested that trade with the EU would decline in the event of Brexit. Why should it? I'm sure that Mercedes, BMW and VW will still want to sell us their cars; if the EU imposes trade sanctions on our exports, we would be free to do the same and the Germans would be one of the biggest losers.

There is also the suggestion last week that Brexit would result in major repercussions and a slump in not just our economy but that of the world at large. However a few weeks previously we had been told that our country is too small 'to go it alone'. These contradictory arguments make you begin to wonder if any of these so called experts have the vaguest idea of what they are talking about. Why should the actions of a 'tiny insignificant country' (their phrase) like ours have any effect on the world economy?

I'm awaiting forecasts from the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries concerning plagues of locusts decimating our crops and the absence of Spanish trawlers from our fishing grounds causing massive problems due to under-fishing.

An afterthought:
Has anyone in the remain side provided a forecast as the increase in the EU budget by 2030? I suspect that the additional cost to each family of belonging will far outstrip the £4300 that Osborne claims will be the cost of Brexit. 

Monday, 11 April 2016

Cameron's Pro-EU Leaflet

We've just received our copy of THAT leaflet; I haven't read it yet and probably I won't even bother. The claim that it is HM Government's position on the EU is blatantly untrue as a number of members of the Cabinet don't agree with the case that is put forward and in this country, until Blair, we always had Cabinet government not a Prime Ministerial dictatorship. Even worse, as far as I am concerned,  is the Prime Minister's arrogance in sending out the leaflets in spite of a pending debate on the subject in Parliament, thus putting himself above Parliament.

Because the contents of the document are not impartial but a one-sided case for remaining in the EU, it undermines the public's belief in any statements by the government or its officials, a change from my younger days when the contents formal government statements or publications were generally accepted to be true.  For example, the Chief Medical Officer recently made a statement on the dangers of alcohol and recommended lower limits. Once, I would have considered statements by our Chief Medical Officer to be advice that I should think about very carefully before ignoring it, but these days such advice has become merely another piece of state propaganda and is treated as such.

It is well worth reading the piece by Lord Tebbit in today's Daily Telegraph, he puts forward what is wrong with this government in far more elegant terms than I could ever achieve.

Monday, 28 March 2016


I've reached the conclusion that there should be an offence of being Christianophobic.

Almost every day we read of a Christian being penalised for his beliefs when members of other religions certainly would not.

Today, the Mail records the case of a gentleman, who had served for 15 years as a magistrate, being sacked because he expressed his Christian viewpoint that he felt it wrong for a child to be adopted by gay parents and that there has been no research to determine the longer term effects on the child.  There is no suggestion that his views had in any way ever influenced any of his decisions as a magistrate, he was fired simply because of having expressed his Christian belief, an view with which many Christians, including myself, would agree.

Then to add insult to injury, the local LBGT coven complained to the Kent and Medway NHS Trust, where he was a member of the board, and as a result he was also suspended from the board as his views were 'incompatible with the Trust's values'.

If these actions were not Christianophobia, I don't know what is. They are discrimination, pure and simple, without any reason, as there is no evidence whatsoever that his beliefs have ever affected his work in any way.

Are these two authorities who sacked him saying that they have no Muslims as magistrates or as NHS Trust members? The views of most Muslims on the subject of homosexuality are far more rigid and extreme than those of most Christians who in general are reasonably tolerant towards gays, even if they don't approve of their actions. Unlike Muslims, where the majority appear to believe that they should be killed, usually by some barbaric method.

The gentleman, a Mr Richard Page issued the following statement:
'Last week, the Prime Minister distributed an Easter video in which he commended Christians, and the Church for their vital role in society, stating that we are a Christian country and should be proud of it.
'However, his Government has brought in laws which effectively silence Christians and remove them from the public square.
'It would appear no longer possible to be a Christian, to state what the Bible actually says and what the Church has believed for 2,000 years, and maintain a role in public life in today's Britain.'
I would agree with every word he said. Christianophobia is rampant in this country.

Friday, 25 March 2016

Brussels - More Emerges

Turkey has said that the Brussels bomber Ibrahim El Bakraoui was deported to the Netherlands for the second time by Turkey last July as a 'foreign terrorist fighter', although it is uncertain whether Brussels was told. But if either the Dutch or the Belgians knew, they certainly didn't put the information onto the international watchlist.

It is claimed that both the El Bakraoui brothers and the mysterious 'Man in White' were on U.S. terror-watch lists and identified by American intelligence rather than by EU resources. The Telegraph also claims that the main EU anti-terrorism watchlist used by the UK Border Force contains major flaws as is that it does not identify a suspect operating under an alias by their finger prints.
Other reports suggest that there is very little co-operation between France, Germany, Belgium and their bordering countries on mainland Europe, let alone with 'outsiders' such as Britain, even though we are all in the EU. American officials have supported the comments made by Sir Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6 which I wrote about yesterday

So much for this marvellous co-operation that we would no longer have if we left the EU, it seems to be pretty non-existent at best.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump, in a Tweet says "My heart and prayers go out to all the victims of the terrible Brussels tragedy. This madness must be stopped and stop it I will".
Hilary Clinton, responding to a previous bombing said "Let us be clear, Islam is not our adversary. Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism".

Well, at least Trump has his feet firmly on the ground and believes in action rather than appeasement.

The Express reports
Retired general Michael Hayden, who has headed the CIA spy agency, warned that the EU often “gets in the way” of combating terrorism and other threats.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Brussels and the Aftermath

Following the horrific explosions in Brussels, governments of many other European countries have taken more or less the same action as the did following those in Paris. They have called for solidarity and illuminated national monuments in the colours of the Belgian flag. There have been outpouring of grief in the streets of Brussels and elsewhere with flowers being left at many public memorials.

Frankly, if I'd lost someone in these terror attacks, I would be wanting to see my country take somewhat more positive action. I'd be wanting to know how a 'Belgian Citizen' can be deported back from Turkey as being a security risk and then escape the eyes of the authorities, especially as they had been informed of his impending return by the Turks. But so far real action, at least as far as the media and public is concerned has been totally non-existent.

Reading the news today, it is apparent that the intelligence gathering on the continent is not a patch on ours. In spite of the EU, there appears to be very little co-ordination or co-operation even within the individual countries although they are undoubtedly generally  very good in terms of armed response and the like, they are very poor in intelligence.

More telling are the comments made by Sir Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6, now freed from political restraints, who likened the EU's various intelligence bodies to the 'leakiest ships of state' and colanders riddled with holes. He also added that "Britain is Europe's leader in intelligence and security matters and gives much more than it gets in return". He confirmed his view that Britain would be safer and more secure outside the EU, and that there should be no loss of intelligence from the EU as it was a moral issue not a political matter.

At the same time Defence Minister Penny Mordaunt today claimed Brexit would make Britain safer although her boss disagreed. She took the view that: "We need accountability. And we need our sovereignty back."  "All that is at stake. It's not just that freedom, but our ability also to defend it, which a subject very close to my heart." You certainly can't accuse her of not 'putting her money where her mouth is' as she is a member of the Royal Naval Reserve.

Yesterday, a van load of twenty or more illegal immigrants was stopped on one of the motorways; I should suppose we mast be grateful that they were not fully armed jihadis who had been let through Dover by our virtually non-existent border security. More worrying is that no-one seemed particularly concerned!

Meanwhile, just when one would expect the Prime Minister to be harrying the various departments of state and demanding action, he has decided to chillax in Lanzarote because he needs 'time to think'.

We are fortunate enough to live on an island surrounded by a stretch of water which has always protected us from the actions of those on the Continent. Let us make the most of it