Andrew Allison

Archive for November, 2007|Monthly archive page

Holiday

In Uncategorized on November 22, 2007 at 10:49 pm

I won’t be blogging for the next few days. We are all off tomorrow to London for the weekend. The hotel does have wireless, however the look on Becky’s face told me it would not be wise to bring my laptop along with me!

See you all next week.

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UKNDA comment

In Uncategorized on November 18, 2007 at 7:58 pm

Yesterday on this blog I highlighted the work of the UK National Defence Association.

This morning I received a comment and I have decided to publish it here for those who do not read the comments section.

Dear Mr Allison,

May I, as the CE of the UKNDA, most appropriately be the first person to welcome you to the UKNDA and to congratulate you on highlighting the need for a UKNDA.

I hope that this blog will encourage many more people to join us in promoting the case for sufficient, appropriate and fully funded Armed Forces that our country needs to defend effectively our people, their security and vital interests at home and wherever they may be.

Sincerely –

John Muxworthy

Cdr, RN CE UKNDA

May I take this opportunity to recommend the UKNDA to all my readers and encourage you all to join.

Conservatives and Education

In Conservatives, education on November 18, 2007 at 5:23 pm

The Conservative Party has announced that it intends to scrap Key Stage 1 and instead introduce a simple reading test. They also want to ensure that all pupils can read at the end of Year 1.

Unfortunately, I have to disagree with my party over this. Children should be encouraged to read from an early age; this is without doubt, but setting yet more targets and pushing reading down the throats of young children who are not yet ready for it will be counter productive. I believe we start formal education too early in Britain. Children prior to the age of seven – in my opinion – should be taught to read and learn basic arithmetic in an informal, fun setting, as well as in the home. If you want children to learn you have to make sure they enjoy it first and that they do not feel they are failures.

I hope this policy announcement will be open for discussion and then dismissed.

UKNDA

In Uncategorized on November 17, 2007 at 4:53 pm

Another issue close to my heart is defence. In the USA, members of the military are regarded as heroes. Here in the UK they seem to be regarded by a large sector of society as no better then a street beggar. This government talks the talk very nicely on how it values our armed forces, but in reality it cuts defence spending so much that our armed forces do not have the vital equipment they need to do their jobs. With our armed forces stretched around the world you would think the government would be significantly increasing spending on defence, instead of making the token gestures they do at the moment.

I have joined the UK National Defence Association that is campaigning for ‘SUFFICIENT, APPROPRIATE and FULLY FUNDED ARMED FORCES that the Nation needs to defend effectively our Country, its people, their security and vital interests at home and worldwide.’

To go on to their website click here.

Transaction 2007

In Uncategorized on November 17, 2007 at 2:30 pm

Sorry for the lack of blogging this past week. It has been ‘one of those weeks.’ I won’t go into detail, but I am sure you will understand what I mean when I say I feel like a ‘blue-arsed fly!’

On to other things. I have received an e-mail from someone representing http://www.transaction-2007.com/. They are an organisation campaigning for lower taxation on fuel, which is an issue very close to my heart. As I have said before the rising cost of fuel will cripple the economy if it is allowed to continue and all the government is interested in is the short-term gain of extra revenue flowing into the Treasury. They are putting the long-term interests of the British economy in jeopardy; as they do with so many of their policies.

Check out this website, join the forum and find out how the campaign is going.

Cameron on ‘Parky’

In Cameron on November 11, 2007 at 2:05 pm

I watched David Cameron being interviewed by Michael Parkinson on the television last night. He told a very funny story which you can read here.

He may have had the finest education money can buy and have come from a privileged background, but he has the common touch and this is a huge advantage for the Conservative Party. I couldn’t imagine Gordon Brown being as comfortable on a show like that. After his disastrous appearance on Jonathan Ross’s show some time ago, Cameron opened up to the warm interviewing style of ‘Parky’ and interacted well with the other guests. Being on that show has given Cameron a chance to communicate with sections of the British public who would never watch a political interview; and he succeeded. Good on him.

Jonathan AItken

In Uncategorized on November 11, 2007 at 1:48 pm

If you believe that prison is there for rehabilitation as well as punishment, then there cannot be any objections to Jonathan Aitken’s appointment to Iain Duncan Smith’s Centre for Social Justice.

When Mr Aitken was asked if this meant a return to front line politics, he said, “No, and I don’t ever expect to. I made a bad mistake – I paid a heavy price for it and I expect to go on paying a price for it. And that’s life and I have to live with that.”

They sound like the words of someone who should be heading a taskforce in to prison reform. He’s done his time and knows the score. Good luck to him and hopefully we will be able to get some sensible policies on how to reform our prison system; although anything would be better than the mess we have at the moment.

Link: BBC News

No Fuel Day

In Uncategorized on November 9, 2007 at 9:21 pm

There is a ‘Facebook’ group entitled, ‘NO FUEL DAY – MONDAY 19th NOVEMBER 2007.’ It currently has 75,074 members.

The price of fuel in this country is – put simply – extortionate, and the government piles on the agony by increasing fuel duties, even though they know the price of oil is going through the roof. This group quite rightly states that the high cost of fuel has ramifications for the economy as a whole. Businesses have to put up their prices as the cost of transporting materials and the cost of delivering the final product rises as a result higher fuel costs. Our hauliers are at a disadvantage with their competitors on the continent. Some hauliers who are struggling at the moment may go out of business if they cannot pass at least some of the increase on to their customers. The Treasury of course doesn’t think like this. All it hears is its cash registers ringing.

I will not be joining this Facebook group however. Whilst I have sympathy with what they are trying to achieve, this is not the way to go about it. If the mailbag of every Member of Parliament was bursting to the seams with complaints about this matter and the government was continually pestered, things would start to change; slowly at first, but there isn’t a politician in the land who wants to to lose their job over an issue that can be easily resolved. Marches and a rallies should also be organised to take place in central London and in cities all over the country. Pressure needs to be put on the government and the squeeze has to be concerted. Trying to get the nation not to buy fuel for one day isn’t going to make one iota of difference.

Speaking in Japan

In Blair, Brown, Clinton, Reagan, Thatcher on November 9, 2007 at 5:51 pm

We have all seen the internet adds and had spam e-mail telling us how we could be worth a small fortune in just a few months if we click here and hand over some of our hard earned cash for this report or another. Well, Tony Blair does not need to try this. All he had to do is turn up and speak to some property developers in China and pocket an estimated £237,000.

As a free marketeer, I say good luck to him. I just wish someone would pay me a thousand pounds for speaking to them, but you do wonder why on earth anyone would think he was worth that sort of money. Not that he is the only one. According to The Times, Bill Clinton has pocketed $40 dollars since he left the White House. Margaret Thatcher got a cool £60,000 for one after dinner speech and Ronald Reagan raked in $2 million in Japan after he left office.

After Gordon Brown leaves office, do you think anyone will pay him for his speeches? The International Insomnia Society, perhaps?

Flooding

In Uncategorized on November 9, 2007 at 2:05 pm

It appears that the widespread flooding that was possible along the East Coast of England is not going to happen. As someone who has been flooded this year, all I can say is thank goodness. Anyone who has been flooded knows what a depressing experience it is from beginning to end; especially when you see your possessions going into a skip. People keep on reminding me that the insurance company is paying for new items, but that is the only silver lining around a very dark cloud.