Andrew Allison

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Prison

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2008 at 12:01 pm

There are a number of reasons why – as a society – we send some of our citizens to prison. To protect us from dangerous criminals; to punish; to deter and to rehabilitate. Rehabilitation is important, as we want someone who is released from prison to lead a law-abiding life.

Now let’s look at the life of Charles Bronson. No, not the actor, but the violent thug who goes by that name. He was first jailed for armed robbery in 1969. Since then he has hardly spent any time outside of prison. He was sentenced to life after he took a teacher hostage for 44 hours in Hull prison, in 1999. He burst into Phil Danielson’s classroom, tied a skipping rope around his neck and dragged him around at knife point.

Bronson now wants to be released and says he is aware of the mistakes he has made in the past and is now ready to become a model citizen. Yeah! He has had many times in his life when he could have become a model citizen and every time he has chosen crime – and violent crime at that. Would you feel safe knowing this man was living in your area?

If you want to help him get his appeal heard though, you can buy his latest single. Yes, he has recorded his version of ‘My Way’ to raise some extra cash. No doubt his foray in to the music business has been funded by the taxpayer.

People like Bronson are – thankfully – very few and far between, however there is one thing they do have in common. They pose an unacceptable risk to society and society quite rightly expects the courts to keep them behind bars for the rest of their lives. No, I won’t be downloading his song on to my iPod.

Link: Hull Daily Mail

It’s a lovely day today.

In Uncategorized on January 10, 2008 at 2:33 pm

The weather may be awful today; it is very windy and wet, but today is a great day. Becky passed her driving test on the first attempt this morning. She is thrilled and I am thrilled for her. It took me five attempts to pass my test, although I did pass all my instructor examinations first time. At least that makes me feel better.

Today our new bed arrived. Although that in itself is not normally a cause for jubilation, as we had disposed of the old beds, we have been waiting for this one to arrive so we can move back home. So now we can say we have finally moved in together in our home.

There is still so much work to be done. Much clearing out and I have to get off to the tip very shortly with a full car load of rubbish. Sitting here on the only seat available in the lounge and surrounded by bags and boxes, I know we are going to be kept busy over the next few days and weeks, however I couldn’t be happier. You can see now why today is such a great day.

Boundary Commission

In Uncategorized on January 7, 2008 at 10:08 pm

Conor Burns has written an article on Conservative Home. In it he gives advice to the Boundary Commission as to how they can address the fact that Labour seats have – on average – 6200 fewer voters than Conservative seats. Read it here.

Blogroll Updates

In Uncategorized on January 6, 2008 at 11:14 pm

I am still in the process of updating my blogroll. Today has been a busy day and I am about to call it a night. If you don’t see your name on the blogroll, it doesn’t mean I have forgotten about you. It means I haven’t got round to adding you yet; although a gentle reminder in my e-mail would not be unwelcome.

Updating blogroll

In Uncategorized on January 5, 2008 at 12:41 pm

I will be updating my blogroll shortly. If you link to me and I have overlooked you, please e-mail me and I will add you.

Blogpower Resignation

In Uncategorized on January 5, 2008 at 10:17 am

It is with regret that I have tendered my resignation from Blogpower. I posted yesterday about ethics and integrity in blogging. Since then James Higham has had his moderator status revoked, sending him a clear message that he is not welcome in any admin role; even though recently the admins were happy for him to continue in an archivist role.

Blogpower does not resemble the group I joined over a year ago. It has saddened me the way it has developed.

No extra cash for Hull’s Roads

In Uncategorized on January 2, 2008 at 11:05 pm

If you ever drive though Hull, the one thing you will have to prepared for is a bumpy ride. The city’s streets are in a terrible state of repair. Roughly a quarter of the city is traffic calmed too. All in all, motor manufacturers should road test their cars here. The suspension will get a good test.

The government has a pot of £600 million set aside for road improvements for the next 25 years, through Private Finance Initiatives. If you live in York, Sheffield, Hounslow, Newcastle, Redbridge or the Isle of Wight, you are in luck. You may have to put up with road works for goodness knows how long, but you should be in for a smooth ride. Hull, on the other hand, will not receive a penny.

The city is in dire need of investment. The flooding last year only made things worse. The government will not reimburse Hull City Council properly for the costs they incurred during those floods and now they will not provide any extra cash for the road infrastructure either. The Leader of Hull City Council, Carl Minns, has described Hull as the forgotten city. It seems once again the city is going to be overlooked. The voters of the city have already given a resounding message to Labour at the ballot box, and I imagine at the local elections this May, Brown and Co will given another bloody nose.

Happy New Year!

In Uncategorized on December 31, 2007 at 6:24 pm

It’s New Year’s Eve and the bins have been overflowing since Christmas Day. Why the bin men needed an extra two days off, I don’t know!

Before I wish you all a Happy New Year, Steve Green decided to tag me on Christmas Eve with a meme asking me for eight wishes for 2008. So here goes:

1. The Conservative Party to go from strength to strength.

2. The government to finally scrap the proposed ID cards. (Plenty of hard campaigning there for all of us).

3. The government to increase defence spending and give our troops the pay, conditions and equipment they deserve.

4. Durham County Cricket Club to win the County Championship.

5. The cost of fuel to go down.

6. To be settled back home and the memory of flooding to be well and truly behind us.

7. To become a councillor. (That’s a dream my fairy godmother couldn’t grant me!)

8. To be a happy, healthy family.

All that remains is for me to thank everyone for reading and contributing to my blog over the last year and I hope to see you all – and more readers – doing the same in 2008. Have a very Happy New Year!

What next for Pakistan

In Uncategorized on December 28, 2007 at 9:46 pm

I didn’t think I would be writing again in this blog this year, however the recent events in Pakistan have made me put ‘pen to paper.’

Pakistan has a long history of bloodshed since its formation in 1947. Democracy has never flourished there. If the military take a dislike to the elected government of the day, a predictable coup d’etat takes place and then we are back to square one. Although it seems Benazir Bhutto was not killed by the Pakistani authorities, what is happening there at the moment is history repeating itself. The main difference now – as opposed to previous times – is that Pakistan is now a nuclear power and a linchpin state in George Bush’s war on terror. Never before has Pakistan been so important to the West.

President Musharraf will now have to react in a way that is seen to be correct for all sides, which is impossible. There are elections due on January 8 which should take place, but with calls for those elections to be boycotted, he is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. Being stuck between a rock and a hard place doesn’t begin to tell the story.

Just how much unrest and bloodshed there will be cannot be predicted, however Britain and the US are already overstretched and with possible action needed in Iran and Iraq still remaining volatile, military action in Pakistan is not an option.

Benazir Bhutto’s assassination in a tragic event in the already troubled history of Pakistan. Another chance to take the democratic route has hit the buffers. Another chance to move from the past and move the Pakistani economy forward has gone. There will be other chances, but this one was the best chance there has been in years. We can only hope another one is around the corner.

Signing off for 2007 (probably)

In Uncategorized on December 23, 2007 at 8:38 pm

I was writing a post last night about my grandmother. It would have been her 97th birthday yesterday. I didn’t get the chance to finish what I was writing, nor have I had the chance today either. Life is simply too busy at the moment.

I think this will be the last post I will do this year. There is too much wrapping to do; so many people to see and a house that needs to be ready to move back in to at the beginning of January. Becky and I are completely knackered, and there is still a hell of a long way to go.

It has been a very eventful year for me. I fought an election campaign; lost – but helped get a few councillors elected. Just after the election, Becky and I got together. Then came the floods! Since then we have hardly had any time to spare. We are both looking forward to a less stressful 2008.

I will take this opportunity to wish all readers and very Happy Christmas and a Prosperous and Peaceful New Year.