Thursday, February 10, 2022

General thoughts and a new start

This blog will be getting phased out, if you enjoy this blog, then please follow the link to my new one. 

In order to make improvements to the content, I have decided to incorporate more videos on my thoughts about the political scene in the UK, Scotland and beyond.

Thank you for supporting and reading this blog over the years, and I will keep it as an archive of what my views were on a range of topics over the 10 plus years of operation.

Monday, January 31, 2022

The Smart Play By the Conservatives; UK Health Sec Sajid Javid will ‘scrap plans’ to make Covid jabs mandatory for NHS staff, the U turn means the health service doesn't need to sack 80,000 people by the April deadline, no UK Health Sec can plunge the NHS into catastrophic crisis and survive as a Government Minister nor as an MP

Through-out the entire Covid 19 pandemic, people across the world and the UK marveled at the un-selfishness of certain key workers. The health workers, the Drs, Nurses and other staff were rightly hailed for what they did in time of dark crisis. There was a national outpouring of affection towards people who stood in the line of fire when others were in the most perilous times of their lives. In the wake of their bravery, there came a suggestion which has been used in America, sack unvaccinated medical staff. After Health  staff dealt with life and death situations at every turn, the Biden Administration decided to adopt a zero policy on unvaccinated staff in key sectors. At the same time of talking about liberty, the Biden Administration was practicing tyranny. There is a saying, if it happens in America, eventually it will happen here in the UK. Not every idea that comes from America is bad, but when it relates to health, it doesn't fit with the ethos of how the people view the NHS. 

When Sajid Javid, the Health Secretary mooted the idea of  mandatory Covid vaccinations for NHS and social care workers, all sorts of shrills emerge from the woodwork to jump on that bandwagon. In my mind, the worst subgroup was the especially selfish people who dumped their elderly relatives in care homes. They suddenly found themselves outraged that unvaccinated people were caring for their abandoned loved loves. Care homes had the one of the worst affected sectors in terms of Covid deaths, infected people with Covid were transferred to sterile care homes from hospitals. This move ensured that Covid ran through the place like wildfire, a lot of elderly patients died after being put in harm's way. 

After targeting the care sector which the government thought was the weakest link to coerce staff to get vaccinated, the care sector was to go onto see 40,000 experienced and necessary staff lose their jobs. Their sacrifices of staying the course, fighting the virus in the thick of it didn't matter a jot. When I first started my new blog, The Laird Report, one of the earliest posts was quick frank about Covid 19 and how it was being handled, don't trust the governments, NHS, Big Tech such as Facebook, Twitter and Youtube, Big Pharma and the mainstream media of TV, radio and print, don't trust celebrities, such as Hilary Jones and Piers Morgan. I wrote a post on Wednesday, 26th January because more and more evidence that there wasn't just something wrong, but something being 'covered up' started emerging. Cover up seems to be the exactly the best phrase to describe how all those above have acted in relation to vaccine injury. 

When news of a vaccine started to become news, I was initially glad, but also as someone who spent 20 years at university, I was a bit uneasy. New vaccines generally take 10 to 15 years to come to market. They go through all sort of trial phases in animals and humans, but these drugs, the new vaccines were rolled out in less than two years. No long term data, and deaths and serious injury in the trials effectively airbrushed out. There was a targeted government, media and big pharma campaign all saying the same thing, false claims that the vaccines were safe and effective. There is clearly a problem, and growing data highlights this,  which was why there was such a rush to get people vaccinated. It was almost as if governments and Big Pharma around the world wanted to destroy any large remaining unvaccinated sectors of the population which could be used as a 'control group' to measure the effectiveness of the vaccines. 

The next link is one of the most up tp date stories of someone 'suddenly' dying of a heart attack while playing sport. When you look for stories like this, you will notice a lot the use of the word, 'suddenly'. Another overused word to explain away sudden death is the word 'rare', well thousands are dead and hundreds of thousands are vaccine injured, there is nothing 'rare' about that. And when others' health suddenly fails as being predicted by others, there will be nothing 'rare' about that either. One side effect of covid drugs in auto immune suppression, that means other illness can flourish such as aggressive cancers because the body's defence system can't cope. 

As I mentioned above, early on I suspect that something was wrong, but as we have seen, anyone who spoke out faced being attacked and being censored on social media. The aspect of censorship would soon emerge as a key 'red flag' of the cover up. A term would start to emerge which to me rang true, Mass Formation Psychosis which I had never heard of,  so I looked it up, but a good way of understanding it, is to listen to this Bitchute video of Dr Robert Malone speaking on the Joe Rogan Show. This is a description of how collective hysteria is generated by governments and their shrills to manipulate people into doing things that under normal circumstances they would be very hesitant, so they abandon their reason to follow a 'leader' who is seen as their saviour, in some respects, it seems like an adapted version of the 'Cult of Personality'. Since  Robert Malone spoke on the Joe Rogan Show regarding Mass Formation Psychosis, you can see the press wasted no time across a range of publication discrediting him. 

Here is a list of articles which weren't slow to discredit Robert Malone, such as Reuters who have links to big pharma. Copy of the narrative attacking Malone would appear in unusual places such as Oregon Live in the US, The Independent in the UK, even the mighty publication wade into Malone. There are a whole load of ways that be used to cover up the truth, from flat out lying, to omission of facts, to rearranging facts in a different timeline to interweaving lies with the truth to water down their impact. The fact so many publications written by university educated people all seem to produce the same narrative at roughly the same time is at least un-usual wouldn't you say? Can I ask you a question, do you think all these university educated people don't know about media manipulation of the press and the 'Cult of Personality'? Are these people who claim to be reporters and experts only looking for evidence in approved sources? Surely the role of the press is to present facts and allow the readers to draw their conclusions from facts while they remain neutral. If you can't get that type of forensic reporting, you don't have a free media, a free press, what you have is people who are "commentators" who masquerade as free press. How can it be that the entire establishment press is so blind to the truth? Why can people like me and others with effectively none of the resources, and contacts find out, by piecing the jigsaw together with random bits of information, come up with: 

"In order to conceal the deaths and serious injury, the government decided to move the goal posts so that a person who was injected wasn't considered vaxxed until after 14 days, this way a huge amount of deaths and serious injury was wiped from being recorded from the official statistics. People were lied too, people were subjected to an organised campaign of constant fear which involved a multi level strategy, government, NHS, big tech, big pharma, the media and celebs all joined into pushing vaccination on the population." 

Is it Mass Formation Psychosis on their part, or simply they are living in fear of losing their jobs and lifestyle by doing something so simple as questioning? Most people rail at government, and some with good reason, but the decision not to copy the disastrous American policy on sacking unvaccinated health staff is one of the smartest every  

U-turns in UK government history. When Sajid Javid went on camera and did a sounding of health care staff on mandatory Covid vaccinations for NHS, most people focused on Dr Steve James, the Dr who said No, but as the publicity focused on him, there was an equally important group of people who were completely overlooked. These were the nurses who were also there when Sajid Javid trialed his policy, there is a video which I have posted before which I want you to watch. In this video you aren't looking for what is said, but instead you are looking at silence. Although the silence only lasts a few seconds, so much information was gleamed in that time, that anyone who thinks they know how to read a room can only come to the conclusion that the 5 nurses weren't backing Sajid Javid, the UK Health Sec. 

I cannot understand why he or anyone else would have thought for a minute that this proposal wouldn't attract any support, especially in a Health service which is dealing with vaccine injured people. It is one thing to know that there are vaccine injure people, it is a whole different animal to see the results of this up close and personal. I am not surprised that the proposed mandatory jabs policy could lead to shortage of 80,000 workers. When you see day in and day out injured people, then someone offers to give you the same thing which caused the injuries, where is the logic in that? To me, it is like drink driving, you can keep doing it for a period of time then your luck runs out, you don't know it will run out, but you do know that you seed your own destruction by making a choice. I don't drink driving because I know it is wrong, more than that I value my health, and I value the health of others. I am not in the business of making illogical choices when presented with evidence. 

Although there are sound political reasons for a U turn on Mandatory Covid jabs, they should be secondary to duty of care to protect health and well being of staff. Simply put, you cannot just trample over the rights to make an informed choice. People shouldn't never be bullied, threatened or coerced. History has taught us the wrongness of imposing forced procedures on innocent people. These principles are enshrined in Human Rights and reaffirmed in many treaties and doctrines both in medicine and in law for the protection of all. Sajid Javid, the Health Secretary will today meet fellow ministers on the Covid-Operations Cabinet committee to rubber stamp the decision on the about-turn. This is the day that Sajid Javid saved his own political career, you see if he had pushed through and the Health service suffered a catastrophic loss of 80,000 people, his career would be destroyed, he would have to step down as a Minister and resign as an MP. The Royal College of Nursing, the Royal College of Midwives and the Royal College of GPs have all pushed for the requirement to be delayed, when in fact their stance should have been stronger. There is no grey area on personal medical choice, there are such things as areas where no compromise can be tolerate, where things come down to a binary choice. 

This decision could be framed as a victory for common sense, human rights and good government, now an estimated 40,000 people lost their jobs over this awful policy will if they so chose able to return to work in the sector. Caring for the elderly is an important job, probably much more than many realise, people who do this need to have a toughness about them. They know the people they are caring for, many will only have a few years of life left and their goal is to provide them with as much quality of life s possible. A lot of people who suffered under the policy will be angry, especially in the care sector who lost so many staff, their experiences should be not by government how an entire sector was brought to its knees. The pandemic is over, the change of approach reflects the new focus on how the UK must "learn to live with Covid". There is a few months still to work through, and planning for next winter, but the increased mood of going back to normality is starting to take hold. There must be new planning in the NHS because we may face a health crisis going forward across many NHS disciplines, the cure many suspect could be worse than the disease. And someone should try to get ahead of that with resource planning.   

Finally, in the near future, we will see political parties try to reinvent themselves from being in lockstep with bad government decisions on restrictions to being the sole 'voice of reason'. In my mind, I don't a hostile public will buy into this, no one in politics is coming out of Covid a hero, there are politicians/ people who should have spoke up and didn't, those who spoke up and were wrong, and those who never got in the game through sheer disinterest. Nadra Ahmed OBE, who chairs the National Care Association, said of the U turn: 

"This decision epitomises the lack of foresight by ministers in choosing to drive the implementation of this policy without producing impact assessment prior to taking it to the vote. Every parliamentarian who voted for it in social care needs to take responsibility for the loss of staff our sector have suffered because of an ill-thought out policy. Social care has been used as a pilot which has devastated our workforce and brought providers to their knees." 

Why did so many allegedly independently minded parliamentarians not speak out?

Friday, January 28, 2022

As Countries start to emerge from Covid lockdown, the return to normal must include a return to holidaying, people have to de-stress, people have put up with too much, it is time to look forward to a better tomorrow, anyone up for a leisurely cruise?

With everything which has happened over the last two years, one thing which we all could use is a holiday, something special, something which a huge amount of people enjoy, and looks like it could be terrific fun, Cruising. What peaked my interest in this type of holiday was watching Cruising with Jane McDonald, when I came across it on youtube search. Jane McDonald is known as a great singer and presenter, so top set the holiday mood, I found something to listen too, hope you enjoy my choice. The quality of this VHS tape transferred to digital is a bit sketchy however the sound quality is reasonably good. There are many great songs on this recording, but I would urge you to go to 35.00 minutes into it, and listen to Jane sing, 'Do You Know The Way To San Jose', it is pitch perfect. 

When Jane McDonald started her holiday programmes, she really found her second bow string  to her string, and an unique niche, when she popped up on our screens and started giving her views and firsthand experience on ideal holidays. You could say, this show was an instant hit, her series had charm interwoven with facts and humour. Unlike some stars who seen as divas, Jane McDonald rolled her sleeves up and pitched in, with the regular cruisers, in effect they became 'episode' stars in their own right. It was tragic when Channel 5 lost one of its biggest stars after Jane revealed that she was stepping away from the long-running travel show. If there was ever someone you would hope to meet on holiday, she was it. Jane's show won Channel 5 its first ever BAFTA award in 2018. 

The great thing about cruising is that everything is planned, all you have to do is turn up, sign in, unpack, find your way round the ship, and eat and enjoy. Cruising does cost a bit of money, but it is an experience not to forget. The food is great, and so is the entertainment, and if you want to stop off and visits the sights on the various ports, with guided tours, how can you go wrong. Cruising is an activity that pushes you towards other people, everyone is in the same boat, and it is diversity in action, all types of people and all types of social status can be found, from the people next door to the rather well off. It was originally thought that cruising was an activity for people who have retired, and you would meet plenty of them onboard, but you get your fair share of young people too. And everyone is of course looking for the time of their life, and some people certainly have that in spades. Cruising is a really good option for adults with young families, so if you're a parent and wondering can you go and see the nightly shows, both babysitting and créche services are available on major cruise lines. 

In life, you something come a TV show that is a must watch, mainly it can be down to the subject matter, sometimes it is because you are a fan of the presenter, but if you can get the perfect storm of material and presenter together, you get an instant hit. It is a bit like mum's homemade chicken and rice, no matter how many times you have had it, you can always go one more time. Of course Cruising with Jane McDonald was a mega hit, but she also done a spin-off Holidaying with Jane McDonald. Finding good quality footage of that series isn't easy, but to give you two videos worth to watch with this post, please click on this link. 

The quality of the footage is excellent, and this episode is jam packed with fun and educationally interesting experiences. Normally, I don't write about holidays, mainly because for most of life, I have never had a traditional holiday. When I went away for a jaunt, it was being put up in a friend or a friend's relatives 's home, but when I did go away, and saw the sights, I knew it confirmed something that I thought of a lot that I knew as a kid, I would love to travel. Seeing others like Jane McDonald doing it only further embeds my desire to go explore, and then explore some more. When Jane McDonald packed in doing her holiday shows was a blow to the nation, it was like someone taking a public information series off the air that people couldn't get enough of. 

Jane McDonald said when leaving: 

“It’s been an incredible four and a half years of travelling, 38 Cruises and over 100 flights. It’s now time for me to spend some time in the UK, concentrate on my music and tours and exciting new projects. I want to offer my most sincere thanks to everyone who has worked on all my shows. Everyone at Channel 5 and Viacom International Studios who have all helped make the most incredible and successful programmes. It’s been a total joy to work with everyone and thank you very much to everyone who has watched and supported the shows. I have had a blast.” 

Ben Frow, Director of Programming at Channel 5 said: 

“We’ve loved working with Jane and are proud to have had her as part of the family. She helped us to win our first BAFTA and her series have become solid staples of our Friday night schedules. Thank you Jane. We are sorry to see you go but wish you every happiness for the future.” 

Finally, as more green shots of leaving lockdown emerges across the globe, I cannot help but think that many previous tourist countries will be keen not to be left behind. There are plenty of videos of how lockdown has hit countries hard. I don't to go with the official versions by State media, I prefer to see independence vloggers give their versions of how Covid hit ordinary people. Because I like travel, another vlogger I came across was an American guy who stays in Pattaya Thailand, his vlog is varied, it comes a huge range, but he did touch on the hardship faced by the people, and unlike some vloggers in Thailand, he doesn't focus on the seedy side. His vlog is like an adventure on the day to day living of an expat. Anyway, if you think you are having it tough, bear in mind that even in paradise, some people struggle. 

I am not sure if many people will get away in 2022, but it is something that people will need to draw their focus towards. Everyone will eventually burn out, the trick is, to know when to just pack a bag, and go see the world. One of the best times in my life was being on holiday in Cologne, Germany, and visiting the Cathedral there beside the train station. One night a dozen of us, when and bought a Chinese to go visit a guy who was the security guard on a building site. Holidays comes in all shapes and sizes, I remember this one because, the weather, the location and the people were all great.

Monday, January 24, 2022

Re-drawing the Map of Ukraine; Is Russian President Valdimir Putin about to commit Russia to an invasion of the Ukraine, at a time when the West is so politically weak and divided, when the US isn't willing to fight on the ground, when senior Nato allies such as Germany and France don't want to upset the Russians, there appears to be an open invitation for Russia to scoop up a large part of Ukrainian territory, this eerily harks back to the annexing of the Czech republic in 1938

In Geopolitics, countries make ridiculous demands and after a series of talks, things are compromised and peace returns, they say the best type of compromise is the deal that no one is happy with. Bearing this in mind, are Russian forces getting ready for war in Ukraine? The Russians have already blundered into and occupied the Crimea, a key critical area in the region. In the minds of the Russians, they basically see all of Ukraine as part of Greater Russia. We have seen from photos that the Russians are bring up troops and massing on the Ukrainian border, they didn't just turn up, they were ordered to be there. They could be there for many reason, such as training, or they could be there as pawns for the political game, or finally they could be massing for invasion. In real terms, if invasion is likely, the West led by the US will not back Ukraine via the acid test, boots on the ground. Although the West will supply military aid, and attempt to pressure the Russians, I think everyone knows that GI Joe Biden has a limit of 'helping' an supposed ally. Also when you look at where the economic power lies, you can see that Russian and China are the major economic players in the Ukraine. 

The Russian grievance is well known, Russia wants the West to promise that Ukraine will not join its Nato defensive alliance. In fact if you look at the picture above, you can see what the real issue between Russia and the West is, the Russians want a large buffer zone, friendly to them yes, but also neutral. The West wants to build a missile ring around Russian much in the same way that they wish to do against China. Russia ideally wants a return to a position of 1997 where many former satellites weren't in Nato, and not part of the EU. Having Ukraine join the Nato alliance is like having armed people standing on your lawn and threatening you. The issue is security in the eyes of the Russians, they feel insecure and who can blame them, the West as we have seen in smaller countries in the Middle East has a first strike policy, usually there is a period of propaganda prior to any military action for the public to be onboard and sign off in theory to any military action. But what about Ukraine, will the people of the West sign off on a military adventure in the East? I very much doubt that there is an appetite to get behind GI Joe Biden, even the French and Germans aren't backing him as they have declared they want their own voice at any talks. One thing looks clear, just as the West stood idly back and sold out the Czechs, it would seem that history maybe about to repeat itself. The West isn't going to attempt or support Ukraine in retaking Crimea beyond a certain point. 

What the Russians want, they can't have, as I mentioned above, no reset of the 1997 Nato boundaries, and although the two sides are "negotiating", that is not going to happen. Those post 1997 who hitched their star to Nato such as Poland, Hungary and Romania are not willing to return to the old Russian Empire. The further West you go, the less appetite the others are as well, both societal and politically. Further north, places like Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were also not friends of the Russians. Russian post second world war did incredible harm in these places under the soviet system. The Cold War may have ended in 1989, with the fall of the Berlin war, but even today, the Russian presence in some countries isn't welcome. And let's face, the soviet regime was brutal. Although the Germans and their then allies, killed many Russians during WW2, it is something which didn't 'top' the murders and harm which flourished under people like Stalin. Stalin was a brutal dictator, he is the classic thug who rose to be a leader in the Soviet Union, WW2 gave him the power of life and death. The purges of the red army in the late 1930's were done so Stalin could secure his position, he literally beheaded the army of it best and most senior commanders. That period of Russia was part of its darkest hours. 

If the Russians do invade Ukraine, they face a few problems, clearly they roll into recognised Nato countries, such a thing would be too much for even Putin, but redrawing the boundaries of the Ukraine wouldn't be. Putin is smart enough to know there is a limit on how far he can roll westwards without triggering nuclear war, and the Russians don't want that scenario. They want Crimea, lock, stock and barrel, an presumably anything else which is up for grabs. In looking at this, the West should remember that their concern of jeopardising Europe's entire security structure, started with their policy decisions. Top me, I think the endgame for Russia if there is an invasion is that they incorporate the Crimea into Russia, the area is known for having many Russians who live there, and one of the main languages is indeed Russian. There are many deep social and cultural ties with Russia which cannot be ignored. There is a great video on youtube to watch which explains better the issue and the players, it also touches on the problem of American foreign policy, the Americans are bad at it. 

This video is worth watching all the way to the end. The title is blunt and direct, 'why is Ukraine the West's Fault, featuring John Mearsheimer. I have watched this and at over 74 minutes, it is a frank and steady piece of work laying out the problems. John Mearsheimer has rightly been described as the most influential realist of his generation. In other words, he looks at the problem, he cuts to the heart of the issue and blows away the smoke and mirrors created by politicians. I am sure that many of his ideas would ring true to you. So, to get a sense of the man himself, best to visit wiki for a snapshot of his bio. If a war between Russia and Ukraine does kick off, you may find him appearing on TV constantly for in-depth analysis. Nato's secretary general warns there is real risk of conflict, and President Biden says his "guess" is that Russia will move in. The US says it knows of Russian plans to boost its forces near Ukraine "on very short notice". One interesting thing which is of note is that Russian troops and tanks have headed to Belarus for exercises. If you factor in that the Russians hold Crimea, you could imagine that if the Russians invade, they could do so from Crimea, Belarus and Russia, that way they could effectively cut the country in half. If you get a map you could see this more clearly. 

Finally, the Russian's armed forces chief Valery Gerasimov has denounced reports of an impending invasion as a lie. This might be true or it could be a stalling tactic while the Russians wait till spring. One of the drawbacks which hampered the Germans in WW2 invading Russia was that they wait till high summer before invading due to supply problems. I guess many will be wondering if the Russians have increased military arms provision, fuel, food and medical supplies for its forces over the recent months. Although economic warfare is a thing these days, a Russia/ Ukraine scrap will be rather traditional, old school warfare. It will be tanks, planes and infantry divisions conquering land. Another fly in the ointment is that if the Russians do go into Ukraine, it could also see the Chinese move on Taiwan. The West doesn't have the resources to fight two conflicts with reluctant 'allies' such as German and France who depend on Russian gas. Already we have seen the Germans veto UK military support flying across their airspace so as not to upset the Russians. As John Mearsheimer points out starkly, the West doesn't consider the Ukraine as being part of their strategic interests. Some allies are less important than others it seems, which to me seems to go against the ethos of why Nato was created in the first place.     

Thursday, January 20, 2022

‘In the name of God, Stay’, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is looking increasingly safe in his premiership after his detractors in the Conservative, Labour, Lib Dems and SNP all fumble the ball at PMQs, although a Conservative MP Christian Wakeford deserted to the Labour Party, the only backlash is against the Bury South MP and his colossal stupidity, Boris has survived his trial by fire!

One of the things which the Conservative Party is known for is the ruthless and efficient way that its MPs get rid of a leader, if they think that person has become a liability. The most famous dispatching of a leader by the party was of course, Margaret Thatcher. What made this episode even more disastrous, was her replacement, John Major. John Major was Prime Minister for roughly 7 years, and led the party to disaster after disaster. This sorry tale of destruction, infighting and general bickering ended up with the rout of 1997. The other highlight of the 1997 election was the 'Portillo Moment'. The individual highlight of the night was named after Michael Portillo who famously lost his seat in  the Enfield Southgate constituency in the 1997 UK general election. This is when the result was announced at around 3:10 am on 2 May 1997. Since leaving politics, it could be argued that Michael Portillo has become a better person, far better than he ever was in it. He became a regular political commentator and presenter, and carved out for himself a second career, which I suspect was more enjoyable for him and the nation. 

The arrival of Tony Blair brought in the false hope for the that an new era of fairness, justice and compassion had arrived, it didn't. Blair would then go onto 'the crusades' against Muslim countries which the US wanted to de-stablise. As history showed over a million people ended up dead, displaced and destitute because Tony Blair joined George W Bush's Arabian adventures. You could ask yourself the question, if Conservative MPs hadn't betrayed and stabbed Margaret Thatcher in the back, would that have stopped the Labour win of 1997? Would every event that flowed from that point forward have happened? It would be highly doubtful that Margaret Thatcher would have joined 'the crusades'. 

Sometimes betraying the leader is necessary, sometimes it can be a good thing, an act of self preservation for country, but sometimes as borne out by unfolding history, it can be the worst thing that has ever happened to a party. At present, there is a rush to judgment by many Conservatives MPs regarding Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the House of Commons is literally working themselves up to frenzy over the possibility of toppling Johnson. The factions in the House of Commons are banding together to displace Boris Johnson for various reasons, its politics, but the real force behind the move to destroy him stems from an issue which was decided by the people in 2016. The people of the United Kingdom voted for Brexit, that led to David Cameron not wishing to honour the result and resigning. It led to Theresa May being stalled as Prime Minister and attempting to sabotage, and water down the progress of leaving, leading ultimately to her demise. She cried when leaving as Prime Minister, but she was a price the country wasn't willing to pay. 

After Theresa May stepped down in disgrace, it was only then that we saw the era of Boris Johnson emerge as an unlikely Prime Minister. There is a saying, 'stranger things happen at sea', well they also do on dry land. As Prime Ministers go, it was Boris who steered us through, and out of Brexit, it was Boris Johnson who steered the country into an increase in jobs and higher pay in the UK for working class people. And it was Boris Johnson who led us through the bumpy ride of Covid 19. Through-out all of this, Boris Johnson hasn't crossed his rubicon, there has been terrible blunders made that could be argued in health provision, on rules, on restrictions and on interpretation of rules, but that would be the same if not worse under Keir Starmer's New Labour Mk2, as Boris eased off on restrictions, New Labour called for increased, only for Boris to be proved correct. None of Boris' achievements however can it seem to invoke loyalty in some people, in fact, in what was a classically staged move before Boris' crunch PMQs, one of his MPs did an early defection to the Labour Party. This move was to add pressure to get Boris to resign, but like Margaret Thatcher, Boris has taken a leaf out of her book, 'the lady is not for turning', and neither is the gentleman it turns out. Boris Johnson has reiterated he is not for resigning. 

Personally, I don't know what was going on in the head of MP Christian Wakeford who has defected to the Labour Party. To jump into bed with Keir Starmer is beyond a misjudgement on his part. I don't care what his made up excuse is, his career in frontline politics is over completely. Although Wakeford took the Bury South seat from Labour at the 2019 general election, his constituents once they grasp the enormity of what has happened they will be quick to get rid of him. Come the 2024 Westminster election, whoever the Conservatives select for that seat, just got a massive boost, people want to know that their MP can be trusted, do you think the people of Bury South can put their faith in Christian Wakeford? 

Conservative MP Jake Berry, a former Northern Powerhouse Minister, said: 

"I think it was a terrible mistake by Christian... I think he's misjudged the mood of his constituents." 

And everyone else! 

If you're wanting a short version, you would say, he has destroyed himself by an act of sheer stupidity. You see although the Labour leadership will 'welcome' Christian Wakeford in public, it is doubtful that the Labour rank and  file, the members will come out and work for him. In the eyes of the ordinary members, he is still the enemy. If you check wikipedia, you will see that the Conservative Party has been very good to Christian Wakeford, and once the temperature dies down a bit, Wakeford will realise just how lonely the House of Commons will be. The fact he jumped, and didn't hang around for any possible contest against Boris to me shows that he probably fancies his chances keeping his seat based on historical voting patterns in Bury South. This begs the question, how long was he talking to Labour, and did they guarantee him automatic selection as a sitting MP for this stunt? 

One thing which amazes me, yes, there has been a few bumps in the road in the Johnson administration, including a slowdown of levelling up. Covid restrictions lifting and a kind of return to normality steadily unfolding, the train can be put back on track. A group of Conservatives who won their seats in the 2019 election landslide appearing to have lost faith in the Prime Minister, is rather premature. If it wasn't for Boris, the new intake of 2019 wouldn't be there in the first place. So, let's be clear, Boris gave them their chance, he did the heavy lifting, he sown the fertile ground that they stand on as MPs. Their job post election was to cement their position in their seats by serving the constituents and their local area. One thing to me which is clear is that the Labour Party has shifted, Keir Starmer has acknowledged this, but I differ with him on what that shift actually is. My view of the change in the Labour Party, both north and south of the Scottish border, is a shift back to the bad old days of New Labour. 

Over the next two years, we will see a New Labour shift back to the bad old days of non representation for the public. It will be back to the days of anti working class legislation, and back to the days of a globalist/ EU agenda to the detriment of ordinary people. If you think things are bad now, all the horrors that people fought against in Brexit would return, but also increase under Keir Starmer's New Labour Mk2 if he achieved power. New Labour would enact 'open borders' a policy which was previously destructive for the United Kingdom, done under Blair with disastrous results. There would be a 'new deal' with the EU, as bit by bit, the Labour Party started a process to hand back control to Brussels, and while they do this under the power of government, there would be no referendum. Once they had placed the United Kingdom in such a compromised position of their own making, engineered together with the EU Commission, the Labour Party would offer a series of steps, as separate policies, think of these steps as 'EU membership by stealth', to take us back into Europe. 

One thing we should remember, and was said by the Prime Minister: 

“Because of the judgments that I’ve taken and that we’ve taken in Downing Street, we now have the fastest growing economy in Europe.” 

He also added: 

“The Conservative party won Bury South for the first time in generations under a Prime Minister with an agenda of uniting and levelling up and delivering for the people of Bury South. And Mr Speaker, we will win again in Bury South at the next election.” 

Finally, the Boris effect hasn't hit Scottish Conservatives, this is plain to see by the 'remainer revenge' charge against Boris Johnson. The Scottish Conservatives MSPs came out against Boris Johnson, now that it is clear that he will continue as PM, what now for the ringleaders? Just as the MP for Bury South made a massive miscalculation, how do you assess the damage caused by the Holyrood group? How does anyone trust anyone now between Westminster and Holyrood? Professor Adam Tomkins in a bizarre input called for the party separation, north and south of the Scottish border, personally, I didn't hold much of a candle to that suggestion. The road to greater advancement in Holyrood seats lies by clever manipulation of Westminster finances coming to Scotland. This means the Conservatives can outspend the SNP in every avenue of government for the benefit of the people. Just as the SNP use Scottish government cash to bribe the electorate with freebies, bike, laptop and baby box etc, the Scottish Conservatives could construct a spending plan that could wipe out any SNP election bribe but only if people vote Conservatives. Now that the dust is settling, Boris is staying and some people wake to the new dawn and ponder what they have done, there will certainly be some interesting fireworks in the near future.

Friday, January 14, 2022

A Sheer Utter Embarrassment at Westminster; Deluded SNP MP Stewart McDonald shows his lack of understanding of geopolitics by saying that accepting Ukraine into Nato is the way to stop Vladimir Putin from drawing a new Iron Curtain across Europe, ex holiday rep comes up with a childlike solution to the Russia/ Ukraine conflict, in the 'Battle of Pollokshaws Library' warmonger McDonald allegedly hid under desk from a man who he allegedly defamed, until saved by Police Scotland, not exactly a hero in the making

On the Eastern front, there is a rammy brewing, the Russians sensing the weakness of the West under President Joe Biden are making noises that they want to blunder into Ukraine. There are some Russkies who yearn for the good old days of the Soviet Union. Russia with a row of buffer States between them and the West. The Ukraine isn't a country that is doing well economically, they like many other countries cannot afford war. They can't also be the cat in the middle of a Russia/ West power grab. If anything, the way out of Ukraine's problems wopuld seem to be that they stake the same status Switzerland. Neutrality would allow them to concentrate on fixing their internal domestic ills to reshape their country. I happened to come across an article penned by SNP MP Stewart McDonald, an ex Holiday rep, and Lesia Vasylenko who is an Ukrainian MP. Their conclusion that to end issues in the region that this magically happens by accepting Ukraine into Nato is naive. We have seen Ukrainian soldiers in military exercises with United States and other Nato forces in the past, we have heard talk of allowing Ukraine into the EU. We know that the West is keen to ring what they call problem nations with missiles, they want to do it with Russia and with China. 

Missiles shields ring Russia and China remind me of the old failed policy of the  Maginot Line. It was said that a quarter of a million men served this defence, the main fault lay in that fact that the French didn't extend the line along the borders of friendly countries. So, the Nazis just 'nipped round the back', making the embedded forts useless. As Covid has shown, missile defence rings are costly pieces of hardware to buy and maintain, so much more simple to have bio weapons destroy a country's ability to fight, plan, train and be economically viable. If the Russians want to roll into Ukraine and seize the country, they could do so easily. The West hasn't the forces or indeed the will to defend Ukraine in the event of an attack. Just as history teaches us, warfare in Russia or Ukraine isn't a viable option. The Nazis found out to their cost that the colossal length and the security of the supply chain is far too much. The notion by Stewart McDonald MP and Lesia Vasylenko MP that a piece of paper signed by Ukraine of Nato membership as way of stopping Vladimir Putin from drawing a new Iron Curtain across Europe is backward thinking. Here is a question, do you remember Neville Chamberlain's signed declaration of 1938, the famous 'peace in our time'? 

How long did that last? It didn't stop military build up, it didn't stop military planning and it didn't stop war in 1939 with the invasion of Poland which triggered the second world war. In fact, the downtime allowed the Germans to bring their industry up to a better war footing. When the fall of the Soviet Union happened, it was right that European countries held hostage returned back to their European roots such as East Germany, Poland and Hungary, as well that the smaller countries of Estonia etc. You could argue Ukraine should have remained part of Russian. If you watch the youtube commentator, Bald and Bankrupt, you can see many Russians who settled in the Ukraine lamenting how things were better under the Soviets. A single video as I have put up above will not give you a totally rounded view of life in the Ukraine by if you ferret through his other videos and listen to his conversations, see the local colour and structures of the country as lived by ordinary people, I think it would inform your view. Like many places, outside the glitz of the big cities, life isn't all rosy in the garden for people. There is an interesting wee conversation around 15 minute mark with the youtube vlogger and an elderly woman. One thing that Ukraine doesn't need is war, it doesn't need Russia or the West putting their big bloody boots on the ground in a power grab. Another issue for the Ukrainians is the rogue militias operating in the country.      

At present, we see a Russian military build-up on Ukraine’s border, we have from Moscow, a litany of security concerns, of alleged fear based on irrationality. Does anyone think for a moment that the West plans to invade Russia? Or that Ukraine, an economic failed State plans to invade Russia? No one is going to invade any major country, especially ones with nuclear weapons. It's too expensive, and it is highly unlikely that the West will take the China route by building up a country's infrastructure in the way that China has done in places like Africa. Modern warfare has a new tool, economics, use to destroyed or create, the Chinese have been very smart to use economic power to create, thus creating goodwill and security of resources for them. Does anyone think that the West will create infrastructure in the Ukraine when economically they are struggling to support themselves, after all, if they can't take care of their own citizens, o you think they have the means or interest to take care of anyone else? Russia's interest in Ukraine is empire building, acquiring resources, a land grab if they choose to blunder into the Ukraine on some made up piece of mumbo jumbo. As if spinning a story actually changes history or the actuality of what is happening on the ground. Will the Russians if they invade make the lot of ordinary Ukrainians better? Meanwhile over in sunny Russia, you can see this level of poverty play itself out, maybe someone should ask Putin, why there isn't enough Russian State aid to help out his own people? 

Ukraine is no stranger to Russian aggression in the not so distance past, the tyranny of the Soviet era aren't easy scars to shake off. The Soviets were no stranger to committing crimes against humanity, from Stalin's time of the purges which is well documented right to up the present day with the Salisbury poisoning. The Salisbury poisoning was a stupid event by Russian military intelligence to murder a defector living in the UK, an old man who posed them no serious threat of harm. Just like in our country, sometimes the wrong type of people get into power and then abuse that power by making decisions which defy any real logic. Although Ukrainian territory remains illegally annexed and occupied in Crimea, this raises concern, especially for the Russians, it is for them a diplomatic sore, much like Afghanistan when they blundered in there, no one is forgetting, and no one is forgiving. If I was the Ukrainian government, I would redraw the boundaries of Ukraine without Crimea. Once that was achieved, then the Ukrainian government should be like Switzerland and remove themselves from being used as a pawn by East and West. After this move, there would be no place for Russian-backed terrorists who are waging a war in Ukraine’s Donbas region. Ukraine needs to work out that the land they stand is viewed as a battleground, they therefore need to neturalise that concept. It is said that  Ukrainian public opinion favours Nato and EU membership, no doubt this opinion has been manipulated by politicians, the promise of nirvana, but the reality is plain, warfare requires battlefields, and I think since we have seen were wars have been fought over the last 100 years, you cannot help but conclude that both East and West have designated Ukraine as a playing area, and while a war isn't being played on the 'ground', that leaves time for the natural resources of the Ukraine to be stripped an hived off to whoever gets in there first. 

Finally, God knows what interested SNP MP Stewart McDonald, an ex Holiday rep has in the Ukraine, it isn't exactly a natural tourist spot beyond the notable urban islands. As to Lesia Vasylenko who is an Ukrainian MP, well her interest is obvious, she is in a position of power, if the Russians kick the door in and invade, her job presumably is in flux. Would the Russians allow the Ukrainian parliament to continue, do they abolish it, set new elections to their Russian Parliament? Would someone like Lesia Vasylenko stand as a representative? Another question, one of the biggies would be, would NATO if Ukraine was a member start a war to recover it in the event of an invasion. Actual boots on the grounds facing off against Russians soldiers, personally, I have my doubts, for several reasons. One the West under Joe Biden is weak and leaderless, secondly military forces have been crippled and run down in the West to such a degree that they couldn't take and hold a country like Ukraine. It's just too big for Western forces to hold. SNP MP Stewart McDonald maybe trying to reinvent himself as a military expert and possible strategist, but he is as dumb as they come out of the SNP ranks. In the 'Battle of Pollokshaws Library', Stewart McDonald hid under a desk because he was scared to answer questions from a man who he had allegedly defamed. You can see the video by watching this link, regardless of what you think of Robinson, the House of Commons allows any MP to defame a member of the public without that person having recourse to law by virtue of doing it in the Chamber of the Commons. Also regardless who said what to who, it is striking that an MP should be so cowardly and need police to attend because of actions that they committed. Now SNP MP Stewart McDonald seems to want to gravitate towards bigger fights, not taking part himself, too cowardly for that, no, someone else has to do that chore for him. Having the SNP at any level trying to pontificate on foreign an military policy is just an embarrassment, it really is, but to put an ex Holiday rep as their front man is beyond a joke.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

The Last Downing Street Garden Party: Prime Minister Boris Johnson apologises at PMQs as he confirms he did attend "event" for 25 minutes to thank staff for their efforts, although Boris is battered and damaged, it is time not just for 'sorry' but to make amends for past wrongs, the country and NHS must return to normal operations, loved ones must be allowed admittance to see dying family members, the levelling up agenda needs to start here, and Boris needs to stay the course, a resignation threshold hasn't been reached

So, regarding the infamous Downing Street garden party, the first thing to say is that this event shouldn't have gone ahead for two reasons, firstly people hadn't a clue about the effects of the virus, and secondly, politicians shouldn't be asking people to follow health rules that they aren't willing to adhere to themselves. Am I surprised by the lack of thought here, well, yes and no, we are told the best and the smartest are in government, so who failed on being the gatekeeper of morality and conscience? Well, basically everyone from the Prime Minister downwards to the lowest staffer, no one twigged this was wrong, and no one grasped this would come back to haunt them all. If politics teaches you anything, it is all actions are recorded and all actions will and can be used against you, no matter what position you hold. Someone probably your political enemy will used it against you, not because they are noble, but because this is a tool to destroy you. I would suspect that many people beyond the party knew of it, and then just sat on it, waiting for the right time to use it against the Prime Minister. And let's be clear, the Prime Minister was in the wrong, and must have known he was in the wrong, along with everyone else who pitched up with their bottle of booze. 

Since the revelations have come out now, as we enter the tail end of the pandemic, I ask you, is this a coincidence? I will be frank, no, it is not, I can only assume that as we near the end of covid, someone or group as the bright idea that getting rid of the PM, installing their choice who opens up the country is like a pre-scripted drama. Enter the new hero who gets a honeymoon period of 24 months before a 6 month short campaign for the 2024 election. I suppose that the current crisis was staged managed by various actors in the hope that there would be such a huge public backlash against Boris Johnson. I can't say that I will be joining in with the calls for Boris to resign, I think the personal damage to his credibility will be enough in the eyes of the public. Boris broke trust, the ball is in his court to win back that trust. His task now is to bring the covid pandemic to a close, a return to normality in the public and private sectors. Just like a storm, Boris has to ensure that the storm damage/ wreckage of the last two years is fixed, especially in the NHS. The immediate task is to get the huge backlog of cases brought down to pre covid levels. 

Today, Boris Johnson apologises at PMQs as he confirms he did attend covid event, he will say that he will "take responsibility”. He rightly acknowledged the public “rage” over the incident, where he went wrong was when he tried to slip in a bit of mitigation by saying, he thought it could have been technically within the rules. People want to hear a genuine apology, they don't want to hear the last bit, that isn't necessary or indeed wanted. At PMQs, he said that he attended the May 20, 2020 gathering for around 25 minutes to “thank groups of staff”, he then returned to his office to continue working. Just think 25 minutes that could have cost him his Premiership, in this case, although people are angry, it is an instant emotional response by many which will wane over time. Some people who lost loved ones, and were denied the opportunity to see them before they died in hospital will be less forgiving. I don't think anyone could blame these people for their righteous anger on that issue. Relatives should be allowed to see terminally ill family members, not on cctv, not through a screen but by being by their bedside. This is something Boris must and should act on, now. It is time not just for 'sorry' but to make amends for past wrongs. 

The acid test will be among Boris Johnson's MPs, there is an attempt to get rid of him from within the party, Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross, an MP and MSP, said he would be writing to the 1922 committee because he believed the PM's position was "no longer tenable". Although people may find this disheartening, I think it is worthwhile pointing out that Douglas Ross couldn't be described as neutral when it comes to Boris Johnson. To me, it seems like the Scottish wing of the Conservatives haven't adapted to the cold hard fact that we are living in a post Brexit UK. Already we have seen arch Remainers, Ruth Davidson and Dominic Grieve lead the charge for Boris Johnson removal. One thing which is an open secret, Conservatives are very good at getting rid of leaders that are an electoral threat. After his PMQs, he toured the Commons tea rooms, where MPs gather, to shore up support among his backbenchers but some people have already made their minds up.  Backbencher Sir Roger Gale who is said to be a frequent critic of Boris Johnson said that politically the PM was now "a dead man walking". I don't go with that assessment, certainly the PM is battered, damaged and said to be crestfallen, but isn't that to be expected? I don't think that the 'partygate' scandal, '25 minutes in May' should define the tenability of any Prime Minister. 

Boris said in the Commons: 

“Mr Speaker, I want to apologise. I know that millions of people across this country have made extraordinary sacrifices over the last 18 months. I know the anguish that they have been though, unable to mourn their relatives, unable to live their lives as they want or to do the things they love. And I know the rage they feel with me, with the Government I lead, when they think that in Downing Street itself, the rules are not being properly followed by the people who make the rules. And though I cannot anticipate the conclusion of the current inquiry, I have learned enough to know there were things we simply did not get right. And I must take responsibility.

“No.10 is a big department with the garden as an extension of the office, which had been in constant use because there was a lot of pressure in stopping the virus and when I went into that garden just after six [o’clock] on the 20th of May, 2020 to thank groups of staff before going back into my office 25 minutes later to continue working, I believe implicity that this was a work event.” 

He added: 

“But Mr Speaker, with hindsight I should have sent everyone back inside, I should have found some other way to thank them. And I should have recognised that, even if it could be said to technically fall within the guidance, there would be millions and millions of people who would simply not see it that way, people who suffered terribly, people who were forbidden from meeting loved ones at all, inside or outside, and to them and to this House I offer my heartfelt apologies.” 

I think we can safely say that staff parties not just at Number 10 but also in government will be shelved until we have normal operations of the NHS and the country as a whole. I suppose the question is, what now, well this 'drama' like the covid virus is going to die and fade away, not because of medication, or smart political strategy but because of 'time'. It is also going to die because Boris only spent 25 minutes at an event he believed was a work event before returning to work. To be clear, this was an 8 hour bash where everyone ends up steaming drunk and legless. It is something that shouldn't have happened, it was carelessness, but I don't think that Boris, nor his advisors will be careless again, they have had their electric shock, and I doubt they fancy their chances if continually plugged into the mains. 

Finally, should Boris Johnson resign on this matter, I think not. 

The Conservative Party MPs need to hold their nerve, no one is falling off a cliff just yet. They should if anything get behind the PM, and demand that the levelling up agenda is pushed through, the country returned to normal business with caveats where necessary, and the realisation that 'remainer' revenge is the biggest threat to the party, the government, and not in the UK national interest. All the usual suspects will try and keep this going, but this matter dies if the Conservative MPs don't go off half cocked writing to the 1922 Backbench Committee. Personally, I think Douglas Ross' inexperience has lead to him jumping the gun on this issue. Maybe he thinks he is carving out a separate identity for the Scottish Conservatives by opposing Boris. Years ago, the view was expressed that at election time, Boris wasn't welcome, I saw that s short term thinking. The Scottish Conservatives, not just the Conservative MPs in Scotland should use Westminster and its resources as the foundation for any platform for Holyrood. After all, Nicola Sturgeon is using Westminster money to buy Scottish elections with freebies. The Scottish Conservatives should use Westminster to best any conceivable offer that the SNP could make. They should offer, new opportunities, new money and a new narrative, they need to break the mould, to do that they need to work hand in glove with Westminster. Winning elections is in part a team sport, but it needs all players on the team to not just understand the goal, but also to commit to the goal as a unit. Boris Johnson has hit a rocky patch, it is right he should face criticism, but he is the captain, and all elected members are duty bound to support him, and when need be put in their tuppence worth.