Saturday, 30 March 2013

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

NHS Privatisation

Fabulous cartoon from

Thursday, 28 February 2013

UKIP to win Eastleigh?

Today is a very strange day for me. If I had not got so disillusioned with the Lib Dem leadership I would be down in Eastleigh helping to get the vote out. As it is I'm sitting at home and wondering how it will all pan out, and I've come to a rather odd conclusion.
If I was in Eastleigh I would probably have voted NHA Party as a way of protesting about the privatisation of the NHS. However the by election has come too early for them and they are not likely to win it. Bizarrely as a life long Liberal and pro European I want UKIP to win and think they might actually do it. Let me explain.
I have hated this coalition with a passion since its inception. A UKIP win tonight could deal a fatal blow to it. If as seems likely the Tories come third it will throw the party into paroxysms, with the backwoodsmen braying that they have to steal UKIP's clothing. They might even be brave enough to mount a coup against Cameron. A more right wing leader would be very difficult to work with even if Clegg managed to survive.
If the Lib Dems lose the seat, I don't foresee an immediate coup, but when there is another wipe out in the County Council elections in May and the relationship with the Tories becomes horribly fraught, a lot of MPs and councillors are going to be looking for another solution other than the disastrous Clegg regime before 2015.
A UKIP victory will not mean a new dawn for them. I've had 40 years of being on the wrong side of that argument. But it could mean the end of the coalition and hopefully the beginning of the end of the Orange Book experiment in the Lib Dems.
So swallow hard, put on a Polly Toynbee clothes peg and "Come on UKIP!"

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Fantastic letter in today's Guardian

Fantastic letter in today's Guardian

I am an ambulance medic and part of a two-man crew. We often get up at 4am, check over a 999 frontline ambulance, then drive anything up to two hours to our area of cover, all in our own time. Then follows a 12-hour intensive shift, where we deal with anything from multiple car pile-ups to seriously ill children. We are sometimes abused both verbally and physically. Sometimes we are threatened with sharp implements and have to negotiate or even physically fight for our safety.
Half-hour rest breaks are not always taken due to the demand on services. We then have the drive back, where we have to clean our vehicles before driving home. The stress is monstrous, but we are exempt from any legislation that makes sure we are not worked to death as we are an emergency service. Our average wage is about £15 an hour. We are life savers, counsellors and sometimes just company, as we hold the hand of someone beyond help. We have cultivated a black sense of humour so we do not crumble and, even so, often cry on the way home. I am sure there are many other professions which have their own untold stories of daily physical and mental hardship.
I would like to say to Sir Philip Hampton of RBS that our wages are "modest" for what we do (RBS chief underpaid, says chairman, 12 February). A multimillion-pound pay packet for a banker's success or failure is not "modest". We take home in a gruelling year of real blood, sweat and tears what Stephen Hester earns in six days. I wish that those who earn such sums would realise that their renumeration is not right. Perhaps they should not apply terms to themselves like "I have one of the hardest jobs in the world" (Fred the Shred) until they see what others do on a fraction of their wage. What comes out of their mouths undermines millions of hard working people in this country. If an ambulance turned up to one of their children severely injured on a country road, would we seem only worth £15 an hour? As they watched as we fought for their child's life, far from back up and hospital facilities, would they reconsider the value of jobs that do not make a profit?
Would they consider our wages modest as they apply this term to their own? Modest is a powerful word and has to be earned.
Name and address supplied

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Sometimes cartoons just sum it up.

Bedroom tax, more government bolleaux

Sadly even mega brain Lib Dem minister Steve Webb has demonstrated he doesn't know what he is talking about when he says people can work a few extra hours to make up for the bedroom tax. An analysis done by a housing trust shows that someone might have to work up to 76 hours to pay for the loss! At every turn they demonstrate not just stupidity but total lack of compassion.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Bedroom tax- Another coalition disaster

Again I'll come back to the rights and wrongs of this one, but this government couldn't organise a very good drink in a brewery. According to Channel 4 fact check it is going to increase spending in many areas, as well totally disrupt peoples lives while they move. You couldn't make it up.

Call Clegg part 2- Benefits crunch for the disabled

One of the frustrating things about being on Call Clegg  a few weeks ago, (see below) was the inability to follow up with questions or comments on what Nick was saying. Because my question about benefits being squeezed was in the week where the 1% cap was debated, he commented on that. When I tried to broaden it he seized on the benefit cap as his straw man to answer. What I really wanted him to address was the cumulative impact of the massive onslaught against the poorest in society that is being perpetrated by this government.

A Canadian paralympian with his medal at Heathrow

During last summer I was one of those people who volunteered for the Paralympics and I spent a fantastic month being constantly awe struck by the hard work and dedication of people, many with enormous handicaps, as they strove to gain medals or just to take part in a life enhancing event. A lot of hypocritical bullshit was spouted by coalition politicians at that time, and it was great to hear Osborne booed by the crowd.

Well Mr Osborne is getting his own back by stripping hundreds of millions of pounds in benefits from disabled people, despite continually denying that he was doing anything of the sort. But I've long given up on expecting honesty from this government.

The one thing you can say is they are very creative in finding ways to salami slice every penny of money while implying that recipients are scroungers. The whole issue is horribly complex, but there is a great blog which I urge you to visit.  They have started a petition which I would again urge you to sign. Don't be put off by the jargon. They are speaking the government's language in trying to get this whole disgraceful thing re-looked at.

At the time of writing there were 19,400 signatures please help get it over the 20,000!

So Mr Clegg, can you tell me how you reconcile Lib Dem values with such a disgraceful attack on some of the most vulnerable in society?

This is a subject which I will return to as it will be something that bites the Lib Dems on the arse big style. 

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Osborne's advice on tax avoidance

I suppose with his trust funds and everything he's a bit of an expert! 

Friday, 11 January 2013

John from Woking on Call Clegg

I suppose its time to out myself. I am John from Woking who called in to the Nick Ferrari show on LBC yesterday. When I heard that Clegg would be on this new programme I immediately sent in my question and was lucky enough to be chosen. I assume it was because they knew it might be controversial. I must admit I was not prepared for how viral it all went. The phone never stopped ringing and I was interviewed by the Mail, Standard, Mirror, ITN and a few others that are a blur. I have had my Warhol moment.

Any way there you have it I am John Doran the County Councillor for Horsell, Woking between 2005 and 2009. I joined the Liberal Party in the run up to the 1974 elections during Thorpe-mania. And I am so very angry about what has happened to my party under Clegg.

I know this blog has had more come backs than Frank Sinatra but while preparing myself for Call Clegg, I started realising, noting and researching all the things that this government is doing that scare the pants of any self-respecting Lib Dem, so I will be blogging about that stuff in the next few weeks.

 Finally a word for my old colleagues in the Lib Dems. I apologise for any embarrassment I may have caused you. Many of you feel similarly but perhaps not as strongly as I do. I tried hard to follow your advice and fight the good fight from within, but it became impossible. I wish you all the best in future elections. You do not deserve the millstone of the coalition weighing you down.

Links to stories about call Clegg. The "bit" with my question can be reached by hitting the link in the second sentence.
 Daily Mail

And of course the obligatory Steve Bell cartoon from the Guardian