Saturday, March 29, 2008

Why Majorities Matter

The more traditional politicians talk about democracy, the less this moribund talent-free zone appears to understand the meaning of the term. Some probably think it means "one person (ie electoral unit) one vote", but nearly all are agreed that they don't want the will of the majority to prevail above their personal partisan judgement. Populism has become a dirty word in Westminster and Brussels, and is used by (delegated) politicians of all ilks as a term of exasperation when asked why they persistently refuse to do the obvious, when it is demonstrably the will of the majority.

Not surprisingly, a recent big issue decided by the usual EU cabal was the latest extension of treaty powers and impositions. Did you or I ever expect that the Common Market - sold originally to us an extension of a free trade area - was going to result in the imposition of a Eurostate and its many impositions on our personal freedoms and choices that we now have today?

Let's take the opportunity to update a classic Monty Python line: "We didn't expect the Spanish... French, German, Italian, Belgian, Irish, Greek, Portuguese etc. Inquisition..."

The manipulation of the majority by a conniving collective of minorities has been the outstanding feature of late 20th century politics. One thing that this motley gang of fellow travellers can easily agree upon is that a policy of "divide and rule" has delivered each faction a power and influence that is wholly unrepresentative of its absolute position in the popular vote. They even managed to con a gullible world into demonising all who question their sacred mantra of "inclusiveness" - despite inclusiveness being the antithesis of the will of the majority!

One signal consequence of this form of minority rule is the way that the West has allowed the actions of a few extremists dictate the policy that now goes under the guise of "anti terror" legislation. In order to address a "tiny minority" of disruptive terrorists, everyone is treated with equal suspicion and equally inconvenienced. Ironically, the line-ups for x-ray machines at ports may be the last vestige of democracy where we (nearly) all get the same treatment.

Is it too much to hope for a political party that offers to listen to the majority of the people, and then actually do what the majority asks - regardless of baggage, dogma and distraction? We certainly seem to have the technology to conduct rolling popular votes on just about anything.

Do you trust your fellow subjects to take the opportunity seriously and not be daft? It would certainly put politicians on their mettle to continuously present the arguments for consideration - they might even earn their salaries, expenses and pensions at last.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Slump? What slump..?

TMP is still aware that many businesses and people do not yet really believe that there is a financial meltdown going on; after all, the chicken is still in the pot, and the cars are still on the drive (especially at the homes of traffic wardens, council bin inspectors and tree officers). So let's repeat the basics: more money has been pledged and loaned to bale out greedy and stupid bankers by the US and UK Governments so far this year than in the decade before.

Where does this money come from? This buck stops with the taxpayers, so MPs, get those fat expense claims in while you still can, the New Labour gravy train is running on a track that is likely to be swept away by a landslide of shocked voters once the reality finally percolates through, even before it dives over the traditional cliff that all previous Labour administrations have failed to detect when giving away everyone's money to buy votes.

The UK is already taxed beyond the hilt, and there is no margin for error or any other form of buffer. The terror with which Brown and his inept cronies regard the present situation is reflected in the quickening pace with which the Bank of England is willing to abandon all pretence of regulation and decorum, just to stop the slide into total chaos. Let's hope someone has the sense to bug George Soros' switchboard this time around.

Devaluing the currency is already happening, and a daft manufacturing sector chortles that this is good for their export business. Considering the tools they use, the raw materials they use and the energy they consume (and even the management they hire in a growing number of cases) are pretty much all imported, that seems like a bit of an own goal.

The emphasis placed by UK government on the vibrancy of financial services and it's love of wealthy nomads that are always to be found sniffing around large capital movements and accumulations has apparently bet the farm on a bunch of idiots and - as the cynical attempt to short HBOS shows - dangerous crooks. However, this industry probably has the least inertia in its operations of any, and the adjustment will be swift and severe. It is certainly vastly more reactive than the public spending and employment bonanza that the City has helped to fund through its taxes and other dubious "financial instruments".

So just when the country needed to incentivize brave entrepreneurs to start (and support) businesses in times of uncertainty and risk, Darling doubles the tax payable by successful long term business creators. And like it or not, any move that encourages those rich nomads to roll up their carpets and bugger off to more favourable tax climes is - to put it as mildly as possible - ill conceived and poorly timed. Also anyone with any accumulated wealth that they might once of risked on new business ventures in the UK has now been sent a further timely reminder of the avaricious ways of Old Labour that now dominate Downing Street. Buy that mansion in the US while the prices are temporarily depressed.

Who else has noticed that we are being lead and managed by complete twats..?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Whatever you do, don't be right... (contd)

A wise old bird once advised TMP that most people were ready to forgive just about any failing in a human being from pinching the office paper clips to murder, except one: never, ever be proved right about any contentious matter. Otherwise widely interpreted as: "no one likes a smart arse".

So the sight of The Boy David cycling the wrong way up a one way street and sailing through a red light has probably boosted his street cred with many sections of the population who find the tedium with which our lives are micromanaged by Gordon's nannies needs to be offset by an occasional rebellion. Right on Dave; up the revolution! Squeeze your toothpaste from the top!

TMP still knows folks who insist that everything in Brown's garden is lovely, and that he is doing a wonderful job (yes Ron, we mean you - and you can afford to be in denial with that fat bank pension to loaf around on). After all, retail sales were up in February (food price inflation) and unemployment down (more bin inspectors). However, the lag between the reality of the financial market meltdown and the person in the street is massively buffered in this land of the eternal jobsworth, because so much employment is paid for from public (ie yours and mine) purses of one sort or another. Everything from the NHS to the BBC and your local council is nicely buffered from the immediate consequences of the real economic world, and inertia will take time to wind out.

However, costs will have to be cut, and the biggest cuttable cost of the lot is the public payroll. This is our opportunity to cull the millions in contrived job creation schemes and just leave the smartest and most capable, equipped with all the tools of modern technology.

The big challenge (boringly oft mentioned herein) remains what these displaced folks will actually do, once rumbled. Blair started inflating public employment (his infamous "project") to reduce the number of claimants on the principle that the net cost of employing the extras needed to support our wastefully inflated layers of local government - who in turn pay tax on their sinecures and VAT on their spending - was probably about the same as keeping people of such limited ambition and skills on the dole. But vastly better political value on the employment stats.

The history of the world has learned many times over that the best way to mop up employment quickly is through a vibrant economy of small and flexible businesses. However, in the UK that economy is now largely in the hands of immigrants who cleverly only employ other immigrants, because the indigenous British have been educated to do anything but work for a living ...and vote Labour. A building firm comprised of hard-working Polish plumbers and Jamaican decorators would have little use for a redundant council bin inspector, who would in any case spend all day twittering about risk assessment and health and safety. Mind you, any displaced public employee could almost certainly make a cracking cup of tea.

Yes, it's a very big bullet indeed, but someone has to bite it before it bites us.

Hmmm.... bullet? There's an idea! How about a return of conscription to plug the gaps in the front lines of the government's misguided foreign adventures.? Now there's a vote winner if ever TMP heard one...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

We told you so...

In contrast to the traditional self effacing moment at times when those who have forcibly expressed contentious views are proved to be painfully correct, TMP feels no pain or sorrow when reporting that its two years of observations and predictions for the fate of New Labour's scandalous and corrupt mismanagement of the UK, seems to have been proved entirely correct.

Although the Conservative party still seems reluctant to contemplate the possibility of forcing an early election through circumstances, TMP suspects that the demoralised and discredited Labour Party cannot last a full term when its stultifying arrogance and stupidity is personified by the gurning idiocy of Ed Balls and his patronising "So What?" riposte in the House of Commons to Cameron's proposition that "Under Labour, Britain is more taxed than at any point in its history". Ed Balls' debating skills could make Michael Martin seem like a heavyweight intellectual.

So yet again, the Conservative Party faces the thankless task of fixing up a Labour economic disaster; and then being turfed out for their troubles by an amnesic electorate. By definition, no incoming Conservative Party has ever inherited the type of golden financial opportunity and stability that Blair enjoyed courtesy of the hapless Major administration, and the inflation crushing consequences of the emerging globally networked economy.

The only task from hereon should be to focus on repairing the ten years of insidious damage caused by the dogmatic destruction of British - and in particular, English - society. But it will not be easy without addressing most of Labour's systematic brain-washing through influence on the educational system, and the infiltration of so many of its fellow travellers into the BBC and other positions of media influence.

One of the more pressing challenges will be unwinding the relentless creation of so many publicly funded non-jobs that we simply do not need and now plainly cannot afford. If the spending options were to be listed and the public asked to vote, just how many of Labour's numerous contrived jobs for the otherwise not gainfully employable would remain with any sort of priority when the NHS is still - after countless billions - still not fit for purpose, and our national transport system simply cannot cope?

But where will this army of the estimated 1-2 million pointlessly employed find employment when added to the inevitable outcome from the temporary employment created by the growth of our sub-prime education culture? This now ensures that even the most inept student can go to "university" before settling down to a life of telling travellers to take off their shoes, inspecting dustbins for evidence of rogue recycling, resetting speed cameras or just claiming incapacity benefit.

Labour's regime of relentless and pointless political correctness, backed by armies of jobsworths who couldn't get proper jobs in a productive economy, means that the old-fashioned ways out of recession are not presently available to many as options. It is bloody hard to get a "proper job" these days, mostly because the burdens and responsibilities of being an employer are vast and growing every time a politician opens his or her mouth.

Precious few entrepreneurs are willing to risk or can afford the outrageous costs of setting up any sort of new business under this yoke of red tape and witless legislation. An accountants' rule of thumb suggests that you need to be prepared to kiss goodbye to around £20k before opening the door for any sort of business, if you are to comply with all the necessary employee, fiscal and workplace legislation.

Ironically, Labour's Scottish heartland, land of publicly funded employment, rewarded the Westminster party by inviting the SNP into the luxury parlour so expensively provided by the English. With its once-feted financial industry in disarray, Scotland looks like being an even bigger basket case and burden on the largely English-funded economy.

Yes folks, it's all a huge Ed "So what?" Balls-up. There is no talent to be found anywhere in this benighted government; micro managing Gordon Brown has no idea of what he is doing or why, Alistair Darling just wishes it would all go away; and Teflon Tony Blair is quietly pissing himself.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Move over Darling

As widely predicted, the witless Chancellor's first budget was an indifferent affair delivered by a non-entity without much sign of ever having had any vestige of any plot that was likely to steer the UK economy away from the shambles that Gordon Brown so carefully and boastfully constructed during his ten years in the job.

TMP's tireless efforts to warn you all away from a sheep-like encouragement for anything faintly green has lead to a situation where all manner of tax milking efforts that can be thinly disguised as environmentally responsible are being imposed in the sacred name of the environment.

The biggest polluter of all is power generation, and the government is solely responsible for the policy that affects this. Given the state of the oil market, all else pales into insignificance, yet HMG simply cannot do the only sane thing and start a dash for nuclear power.

Even if road transport contributes significantly to CO2 at present, it won't when we are all in electric vehicles being recharged at every lampost.

What do we have to do to get rid of these dangerous buffoons?

Thursday, March 06, 2008

No surprise

A referendum? We're terribly sorry - but this is a representative democracy where MPs are paid to make the complex decisions that mere voters are not fit to decide for themselves; so piss off.

This government embraces new technology when it suits them: the many, many facets of New Labour's surveillance society; eagerly switching services traditionally dealt with at Post Offices to online forms; online tax returns. You name it, when it suits them, New Labour is rolling the mouse around and clicking frantically.

But the idea of using technology to extend the reach of democracy to allow the people to participate more closely in the decisions of government..? You must be kidding. The Stone Age suits us just fine.

Meddling with the traditional voting process only occurs when the outcome is going to provide a gain to Labour, as exemplified in the postal votes fiasco.

The level of corruption and dishonesty now rampant in this government is approaching levels that would cause the dictator of a banana republic to check his Swiss account and warm up the Learjet. The real problem is that Brown is autistic enough to believe that he is doing a good job, or at the very least, a better one than anyone else could.