Saturday, February 28, 2009

Let's hear it for Billy Hayes!

This piece on the BBC website says it all. Gordon Brown, a LABOUR Prime Minister, crying crocodile tears over the predicament of Royal Mail and begging philanthropic venture capitalists to bail him out. SORRY?????????? When he can find BILLIONS for the PRIVATE SECTOR BANKS - he can't find the investment necessary to ensure a modern, responsive and competitive Royal Mail? He chats about losing 7-8% a year, doesn't he see the irony against the losses of RBS, to name but one? He chats about losing 7-8% a year, with no notion of the public service nature of the Royal Mail. ER.............last time I looked the police service were losing 100% per year. Social Services...........100% per year. Education...........100% per year. What percentage does the subsidy to the rail companies amount to? How much are they "losing"?

There is an acceptance in this country that if you want a universal service, be that postal, transport or in the past HAVE to subsidise it.

So, in my view Billy Hayes had it spot on "The Royal Bank of Scotland is on the verge of being nationalised and we've got the situation where they are suggesting Royal Mail should be privatised and flogged to a foreign multinational".

Peter Mandleson, he of frequent financial scandals, may fool some of the people some of the time, but on this he is certainly not going to fool all of the people all of the time. Let's hope this finally proves his undoing.

Peter.........Billy? I know who I think has this country's best interests at heart.

Ivan Cameron

The first I heard of the death of Ivan Cameron was via a Burbler twitter, just as I was about to leave for work. Like parents the world over, that first euphoria on the birth of a child is quickly dented by an innate fear that this precious bundle you have been blessed with, may be taken from you. Newborn babies are scored (I think on a scale of 10), I remember how much I fretted when my son came out at 7 and we had to stay in hospital a couple of days longer. Since then he has been a constant source of anxiety (!) but I cannot imagine the anguish of dealing with the news the Camerons had to deal within a few days of the birth of Ivan. Even less their anguish this week.

What this reminds us of, as did the tragic death of Jennifer Brown, is that life is fragile and that such fragility touches us all however privileged or deprived. Certainly it is more a part of life if you live in Sudan or Gaza for example, but death is no respecter of rank, religion or race.

PMQs was rightly replaced with messages of condolence for the Camerons. If in politics we lose sight of our common humanity we lose sight of everything. But, I trust, as the Camerons come to terms with their loss, they will recognise the unique opportunity they have to fly the flag for other children and young people whose life chances are blighted, not only by their disabilities, but by a society that still continues to discriminate against them.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Will the Royal Mail debate damage Cameron and Clegg?

Two interesting articles today one in the Indy and one on Mike Smithson's Political Betting. The Indy points out that this is an issue splitting all the parties. Cameron has a dilemma, the best chance yet to see a Brown defeat and yet he is backing the idea that was an idea too far even for his great hero Margaret Thatcher. There is something totemic about "Royal" Mail in the psyche of our nation. Posties are universally loved (my brother is one so I understand why!), the idea of a universal service, that you can post a letter from anywhere to anywhere in the UK for the same price. But of course the danger with privatisation has to be that we will lose that, or alternatively see huge rises in the cost of the service.
The reason I was so vociferous in our own debate about this issue is very simple. Private companies are not altruistic charitable outfits. They really don't give a fig if Mrs Jack in the Outer Hebrides ends up paying through the nose for their service. In reality she won't have a choice. And secondly, private companies are there to make a profit. At the moment Royal Mail are in debt. So any private company interested in taking on this loss making business will have to include plans to massively hike costs. If you have to find the money just to clear debts that is one thing, but to make a profit too, is quite another.
In all this debate we seem to have lost sight of the fact that this is a public service - in the same vain as other public services that we subsidise through tax. For example, if the Police Service were subject to the same constraints as Royal Mail whatever mess would that be in now?
Nick Clegg has a similar dilemma to Cameron. Our current policy would make it difficult for him not to support Brown and I expect him to, but, as Mike Smithson observes concerning Cameron, it may turn out to be a mistake.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'd rather be hungry than cold

Last week I was in Belfast. I heard a story that no doubt could be multiplied thousands fold in this great country of ours. The story was of a young woman, 17 years of old, living alone. She was entitled from the state to £40 a week. £20 of this was paid in food vouchers. If she did not spend up to the amount, she lost the rest. She found this difficult - during a week there were items such as milk and bread that she could not buy on a weekly basis.

The past few weeks have been bitterly cold across the UK. This young woman could not afford heating, she has asked that she only be given £10 in food vouchers, so that she can have the other £10 to pay for her heating - she would rather be hungry than cold. The tears are again stinging my face as I write this. What are we doing to our children? A government that spews out weasel words about ending child poverty and yet creates a system that does this to one of our most vulnerable? A myriad of think tanks and policy wonks who pontificate about this and that and the other (I still haven't written my piece about the Centre Forum Equality debate a couple of weeks ago) in theoretical terms. Sorry, I confess, I am no academic - but I am someone who has spent most of her life working with "ordinary families" (can we come up with another term?) and extraordinary young people, surviving in spite of, not because of, enlightened public policy.

In May 1997, like many youth workers, I had high hopes that a Labour Government may do something to improve the lot of our young people. I am sure that they had similar ambitions - but - as is demonstrated time and time again - the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If you start with the wrong premise - you end up with nonsense. This government's obsession with control, its blind faith in private sector solutions and belief that young people can be coerced into being the people the government wants them to be - has ended in human misery and disaster for so many. They have from the beginning surrounded themselves with the great and the good, highly intelligent I don't doubt - in touch with the reality of people's lives?........I seriously doubt. Frankly, the people with the solutions to our most pressing problems, are the people themselves. But how often are they honestly and meaningfully consulted with?

I am unable to get the image of that young woman out of my head. By all accounts she is a feisty, determined character. But at 17, with no family to support her, is totally reliant on a system that is at best inept, at worst frankly criminal.

Do I think the Labour Party will ever be able to address this problem? They have palpably demonstrated they are incapable of doing so. Do I think "New Tory Party" will do so? They talk the talk, but walking the walk is not only unlikely it is totally against the values they hold dear. Do I think we can? If anyone seriously wonders why am I am in this party - this is why. I know, without a shadow of a doubt that this is the vision of Nick Clegg. I know, without a shadow of a doubt that this is the vision of our party. The only impediment to us really doing this will be trust in a flawed methodology. That is where our debate must be - that is where our battle lines must be drawn.

So, for this young woman and so many like her, who will tonight be going to bed hungry or cold, or both - will we be big enough for the challenge?

Shooting ourselves in the foot on the Working Time Directive

I really don't know where this party campaign comes from? Where is our policy on this? When did we become apologists for the Daily Mail approach to European legislation?

OK, it's taken me a week to respond.......I have allowed myself a modicum of time to calm down, but however much I try to understand.......I JUST DON'T!

I am talking of course about the campaign to maintain the UK opt out on the Working Time Directive. Hmmmmm opt out that allows exploitation and abuse of powerless workers to continue. Of course, we are all for that aren't we?

So, how is it that we (for we are all tarred with the Lib Dem brush when pronouncements, however unpalatable are pronounced!) are endorsing a position, which in my view, is contrary to our values. Those who are leading this campaign should know better, people who on other issues bang the drum for equality and fairness, who would throw up their hands in horror at any other oppressive or discriminatory practice.

What I also find astounding is that we have been invited to support this campaign without, as far as I know, any reference to the parliamentary party in Europe! The posting on the Scottish Lib Dem site is misleading, suggesting Lib Dem MEPs voted against, when only some of them did.

Liz Lynne, someone who I know is a staunch campaigner on so many other issues of human rights and equality, has lead the fight to keep the opt out. In a press release in September last year she argued "I welcome attempts to retain the UK's opt out with more stringent conditions on its use, anyone whose work does not have a direct consequence on life and death decisions should have a free choice as to what hours they work, so long as this is truly voluntary." Er.......retained fire fighters? Maybe I am missing something but I always thought they were involved in life and death decisions????

For me there are two important issues.

Firstly - the impact on the individual. Let's not forget, this 48 hour rule applies over a 17 week period, and in some cases longer. It is surely not healthy for anyone to consistently work over 48 hours?

Secondly - the impact on the family and wider society. We already work the longest hours in Europe, we know our children are the unhappiest, why do we think our right to work ridiculous hours is more important than our wider responsibilities to our families and community? Frankly, if someone is consistently working over 48 hours, it suggests to me that there is more than one job there. So, particularly at a time when we are facing mass redundancies, when we are creating a lost generation (40% of unemployed are 16-24), we think it is OK for those who are lucky enough to be in work, to consistently work as long hours as they like. In practice well over 25% more than a normal working week. Now, of course, I accept the argument that for some people they don't get a living wage and need to work those longer hours - but that is a different argument. That is an argument about the level of the minimum wage and level of tax they are expected to pay.

So, to take the Facebook Campaign Group's position to its logical conclusion, I am anti worker, in particular, anti retained fire fighters. Hmmmm, funny that, given that the FBU position is very clear. They took issue with the way the arrangements

  • Put employees especially, but not solely new or prospective employees, under pressure to agree to alternative shift systems to those agreed with trade unions; with a view to

  • Undermine collective bargaining including collective agreements on shift systems

They had a model letter in the runup to the vote -

Dear [Name of MEP]

As you will be aware there is a vote to take place on 17 December 2008 at the European Parliament on the Second Reading on the Council common position for adopting a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Directive 2003/88/EC concerning certain aspects of the organisation of working time. The only defence of the UK opt-out that we have been given is that it provides ‘flexibility’. What the opt-out actually provides is the opportunity for employers to abuse their workers – all the flexibility they need is already set out in other parts of the Directive which provides for the 48-hour limit to be averaged over an entire year. It cannot be right for people to be working longer than 48 hours all year round, and indeed there is plenty of evidence that persistently working long hours is bad for people’s health as well as other people’s safety. This should not be a matter of choice – no one argues for an opt-out from the speed limit!I am aware of amendments being proposed by MEP Alejandro Cercas Alonso and would urge you to support those amendments in particular amendments 9 and 11-18. Could I ask that you write to inform me how your vote was cast on this most important matter?

So, it seems to me that we are choosing to be opportunist and bang an anti European drum on an issue we think that will make us look like we are right on with the workers...........except the representatives of those very workers, on this issue, support the current European position.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Until a few days ago I thought Twittering was yet another gimmick that wouldn't interest me, but then pal Louise Macdonald convinced me that I really should start and she was clearly hooked! So, I decided to give it a go, signing up to Stephen Fry, Al Gore and Louise immediately. I began to see the point, especially given the Euro campaign I could keep supporters up to date, texting snippets as I waited for the lift, tube, train, or as happened tonight waiting for the person (who will remain nameless except to my followers!) who I was supposed to meet for an exhibition who arrived as we were being chucked out! This could be fun, thought I. big problem...........I CAN'T SEND MESSAGES FROM MY PHONE! Now, answering the question, what am I doing, when what I am doing is sitting at my PC, either at home or at work.........seems to defeat the object, it loses the spontaneity of the moment. My excitement (yes I am easily pleased!) when I beat my record for getting to work - 1 hour and 7 minutes door to door! (OK the 2 hour journey home this evening kind of cancelled that out). My frustration when I got to London Bridge and discovered that the reason I couldn't find a train to Luton was because they weren't running after 10.30. My delight at finding a pic with me in it from the Children and Young People's Services Awards (I'm on the hunt for pix at the mo for my website). My curiousity when I got a message from a pal asking where to get an application form for MI5...................

So, I will just have to wait for one of you technowizards to explain to me the ancient art of twittering................please?!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Jewish Voice for Peace, Why is the Anti-Defamation League defending Lieberman?

The recent events in Gaza have receded in our conscience - yesterday's news, today's chip paper. But hiding in the shadows of the drama of Gaza lies an ominous racism towards the indigenous Palestinian citizens of Israel. i have been passed this article from Jewish Voice for Peace.

Abe Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League is defending one of Israel's most powerful far-right extremists and his plan to strip "unfaithful" citizens, mostly Arab Israelis, of their citizenship. The Anti-Defamation League is supposed to "secure justice and fair treatment to all." Instead, they are supporting a dangerous ideology that calls for taking citizenship away from Israelis for exercising their right to free speech. How can we expect the ADL to effectively defend the rights of Jews when they so easily step on the rights of Arabs?
Avigdor Lieberman now heads Yisrael Beytenu, the third largest party in Israel, and is likely to be a minister in a new Israeli government.
On February 10, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported that Abe Foxman defended Lieberman's plan, despite the fact that "Some liberal Israeli and Jewish groups have condemned Lieberman as a fascist - the left-wing Meretz Party even compared him to the late far-right Austrian politician Joerg Haider - for his proposal to require Israeli Arab citizens to sign an oath of allegiance to the Jewish state." (1)
Instead of defending Lieberman, the ADL should be condemning him.
Why should the Anti-Defamation League condemn Lieberman?
Avigdor Lieberman led the drive in Israel's Central Election Committee to have Arab political parties banned from running in the most recent election, which passed successfully and was overturned only by the Israeli Supreme Court. (2)
He has called for the expulsion of Arab Members of the Knesset, threatening them that "a new administration will be established and then we will take care of you." (3)
He has called for Arab citizens of Israel to sign an "oath of loyalty" to the state or be stripped of their citizenship. (4)
His party has been very clear about what being "loyal" means: If you are an Arab student and dare come to school wearing a kefiyah, you are "disloyal." (5)
Lieberman's party said that if you are a Muslim Israeli and collect money and medicines for Gaza relief, you are "disloyal." (6)
If Lieberman's plan is put into place, if you do not meet his standards of loyalty, you lose all the rights of a citizen; you lose the right to vote; and you lose the right to have a political party or to run for office - that is, the right to participate in Israel's political process. Is this what the ADL stands for?
It is ironic that the ADL understands as anti-Semitic the accusations of dual loyalty hurled against Jews in the US and elsewhere, but remains unconcerned about similar accusations against Arab Israelis.
Remind Abe Foxman that his organization was founded "to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all" - and that all means all, including Arab Israelis.
Click here to sign the letter to Abe Foxman.
(1) Back in 2006, the ADL condemned Lieberman's call to execute Arab legislators. But today, Abe Foxman defends Lieberman's loyalty oath

Daniel Bar-Tal

I just got sent a copy of this moving open letter from Israeli social psychologist, Daniel Bar-Tal on the Gaza war :

This is probably one of the most difficult periods in my political life as a Jew living in the State of Israel. The events of the war in Gaza hit hard my foundations of hope that a peaceful conflict resolution between Israelis and Palestinians can be achieved in the near future. Moreover, my trust in humanity has been weakened seeing the ease with which human beings rally for a war, exercise blind patriotism, express desire for vengeance, delegitimize the opponent, and develop insensitivity to human life, denial of responsibility, self-righteousness and moral entitlement. This is in contrast to the great difficulty that human beings have in mobilization for peace. We see over and over again that it takes many years and many efforts to persuade people in the importance of peace, but it takes an extremely short time to convince people in the need of war. It is even more difficult to establish moral considerations.
I have been agonizing for weeks whether to write an open letter. I could not bring myself to the paper and pencil or to the keyboard, feeling despair and helplessness. But only a responsibility to voice another opinion as an alternative to the officially presented views that are supported by the great majority of the Israeli Jews brought me to write this letter. It is important that you will know that there is a minority of us, Jews in Israel, who care about moral considerations and opposed this war.
What can I say when I know that about 1300 Palestinians killed, at least half of them innocent civilians, including children, women, and old people, over 4000 were injured, thousands of homes were destroyed and dozens of thousands became homeless. Also on the Israeli side 13 Israelis were killed, including 3 civilians, hundreds were wounded, and thousands had to escape from the hundreds of rockets that were fired on Israel. I could repeat the arguments of the Israeli government that through the years many hundreds of rockets were fired on the Israeli land west of Gaza, including populated settlements; that no government would allow that their citizens will be hurt; that "after eight years of restraint, Israel has decided to act against the terror attacks coming from the Gaza Strip. Israeli restraint was misinterpreted as weakness by Hamas and members of the vertical axis of extremism led by Iran";…that "Israel had given a mutual agreement to preserve peace its final chance when it agreed to the Egyptian brokered Period of Calm agreement in June 2008, whose terms were repeatedly transgressed by Hamas". It is just natural that those who sent the soldiers to the war have to defend it and rationalize it. This is a human principle.
But these arguments do not tell the whole story. Even if we take the Israeli arguments without the background and complexity, they cannot account for the scope of civilian losses and the destruction on the Palestinian side. The brutality and scope of the Israeli actions testify to deeper roots that are founded in the darker side of human beings. They express the wish to erase the feeling of failure in the Second Lebanese War during the summer of 2006; they reflect a deep sense of collective victimhood because of the continuous firing of rockets on civilian settlements in the south by the Hamas military organ-- this sense of victimhood led to the urge to revenge in order to punish for the harm done and prevent further firing. In addition, they are derived from the continuous dehumanization of the Hamas organization. Finally, they are based on the conviction that Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005, allowing Palestinians to live their lives and they instead engage in terror.
But, the reality is much more complex than the narrative perpetuated by the Israeli political and military establishments, which successfully constructed the beliefs of the Jewish public in Israel. This is a kind of irony because one of the objectives of the war was to carve the consciousness of the Palestinians so they will recognize the harm that Hamas is causing to the Palestinian cause and Palestinian life. This objective was not achieved and instead the war strengthened the hatred and mistrust of both sides towards each other, reinforced the support of hawkish opinions on both sides, and as a result, the peaceful process is further greatly damaged. Moreover, it is hard to detect any meaningful political gains of Israel in the balance of this war. We are back to the same lines that were before the war ---with terrible losses and destruction.
The psychological analysis of the situation illustrates the selective, biasing and distorting transmission and dissemination of information by the Israeli channels of communication. It does not mean that the alternative information does not exist in Israel but very few are interested in knowing what is really happening. Thus, most of the Israeli Jews do not know what Israel perpetrated through the decades of occupying Gaza; most of the Israeli Jews do not know that originally Hamas was founded by the Israeli authorities to provide an alternative to the national movement of PLO; most of the Israeli Jews do not know that Hamas is a religious–fundamental movement that also provides welfare, health and educational services to the Palestinian people; most of the Israeli Jews do not know that Hamas was elected democratically (with the insistence of USA) to lead the government of the Palestinian authority because of Fatah corruption, and mostly because of the fruitless negotiations with Israel which did not provide any political solution of the conflict; most of the Israeli Jews do not know that the policy of the Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon about ‘No Palestinian Partner’ led to unilateral disengagement from Gaza without negotiation with the Palestinian Authority. This act was done in order to delegitimize Palestinian Authority and in attempt to keep control over the West Bank. Moreover, the disengagement did not free Gaza but turned it into one big prison. Israel controls the entrances to Gaza and controls every aspect of human life in Gaza. It decided to change the support of Gazans in Hamas by carrying out a siege that allowed minimal living and brought Gaza to economic disaster. Israeli Jews know that even after disengagement, Hamas continues to fire rockets on the Israeli civil settlements but few know that during 2005– 2008, hundreds of Palestinians were killed by the Israeli forces. Few know that the tunnels were built mainly to smuggle civil goods that could not be brought to Gaza and not only weapons as the great majority believe. Few know that there is a relationship between Israeli violence and Palestinian violence, preferring to see the latter as irrational, fanatic, and immoral while the former as defensive, moral and well justified.
Few of the Israeli Jews recognize that Israel during two years had at least two alternative strategies to prevent further escalation; either to talk with Hamas which is possible and negotiate long-term cease-fire, or take decisive actions of peace (for example, to ease conditions of life of the Palestinians by removing many of the checkpoints and to remove illegal settlements as required by the Israeli promise to U.S.) vis á vis President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority to show the Palestinians that process yields tangible fruits that lead to prosperity and security. Even when we shift to the period before the war, most of the Israeli Jews do not know that it was possible to negotiate continuation of the cease fire with Hamas and do not remember that it was Israel who broke the ceasefire of November 4, 2008, killing 6 Palestinians. Hamas is not my cup of tea as it is a fundamentalist religious organization that practices also terrorism, but it is a social movement with wide support in the Palestinian society because it provides an alternative to humiliated Palestinian national identity. This movement is not homogenous and it is possible to hear in it different voices including ones that support negotiation with Israel and acceptance of the two state solution.
All these omissions are not surprising in view of the fact that the involved sides in conflict have been deeply embedded in the culture of conflict. They systematically try to construct the views of society members in a direction of presenting own society as being moral, just, peace loving, or moderate and the rival as being immoral, intransigent, violent, irrational, or extreme. In addition each side views itself as the victim of this conflict. This process goes on for decades. Only during few years during Rabin time it looked as the peace process is gaining momentum. But since the year 2000, when the Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak decided on the policy of "no partner", the peace process is dying. It is true that Palestinians have their share in the failure of the Oslo process. But the tremendous asymmetry of power puts the responsibility for the continuation of the conflict mostly on the Israeli side. It is Israel that has almost all the cards to solve the conflict; it occupies the land, holds Eastern Jerusalem, controls the life of the Palestinians, controls the resources of the West Bank, expands constantly the Jewish settlements on the West Bank, exercises preventive and punishing violent acts according to own will and has (at least had until now) almost unconditional backing of the superpower.
The contours of the potential settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are more or less clear: If it will happen, it will be in accordance to Clinton proposal, Taba understandings, Geneva agreement, and Arab league proposal: Israel will have to return to 1967 borders with some swaps of land in order to hold the most populated clusters of Jewish settlements just beyond the green line of 1967, Jerusalem will be divided, most of the Jewish settlements inside the territories will be dismantled, and the refuges problem will have to be solved via common agreement with their compensation and settlement mostly in the future Palestinian state. The present Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert outlined openly these principles to the Israeli public but did not take any concrete steps to implement them. Israeli public, while recognizing the need in two state solution (because of the demographic fear), objects to the outlined principles. The majority of the Israeli Jews object to divide Jerusalem, to withdraw to 1967 borders and to dismantle most of the Jewish settlements the West Bank. In fact I must admit that I do not see any Israeli government evacuating about 60,000 Jewish settlers from the West Bank. Israeli Jewish public after the destruction of the peace camp in 2000 is moving steadily towards hawkish-nationalistic views. The present war provided additional blow to the peace camp. It is almost certainly that the next Israeli government will be very hawkish after the February 10 elections.
The rest will be written in the history books. …. The war did not erupt spontaneously but was well prepared, including its scope, the type of weapons to be used, and so on. Also it was consciously decided to use a disproportional might in order to save lives of Israeli soldiers and to teach the Palestinians a lesson. The results of the war are tragic for both nations. It provided unequivocal evidence to each side that the other side is evil and immoral. Now few of us here and there can only evaluate the tragedy, explain the events and pray for a miracle from outside forces that will come and save us from the worst human instincts.

Sincerely Daniel Bar-Tal


A few years ago i had my interview for my current post at the FSA. One of the questions I was asked was "How do you think you will get on with a bunch of bankers?" Well, as I often say - it was a bit of a culture shock for me, but I like to think it was more of a culture shock for them!

So I have been following the debate of the last few weeks and the comments from my bosses with interest. As a trade union negotiator when "Single Status" was being agreed, one big issue was the unfairness of bonuses that were paid to predominantly male roles such as refuse workers, as opposed to predominantly female workers, such as school meals staff. So from my perspective this current debate, which rightly points out how bonuses have fuelled a risk culture, is missing one big point. Bonuses are demonstrably discriminatory. Harriet Harman has correctly pointed this out, but her words appear to have fallen on deaf ears. We need to look at bonuses, not just in the banks in near public ownership, not just in the banks more widely, but across the board. I am pleased the EHRC are doing some work on this. Having represented a black woman banker at a hearing where the bonus system had clearly discriminated against her (interesting in the light of the revelations last week about senior bankers not being qualified, she was the only one in her department who WAS qualified, had been tipped for greatness by the press when she was in her 20s and yet had seen all her male white colleagues leapfrog over her when it came to promotion and bonuses), I had my eyes opened to how the system is open to abuse, both directly and indirectly.

Two or three days before it sunk the Titanic was warned it was approaching an ice field, ignorance, arrogance or indifference meant it ignored the warnings. Vince Cable has been a clear and lone voice about the banks and personal debt for many years. No one listened. The tragedy is that it is not the wealthy bankers who may miss out on the odd £million who will suffer, no, they will already have their lifeboats ready and their life jackets at hand. It is those (rather like the poor souls on the Titanic in third class) who bear no responsibility for this situation whatsoever, they don't have loans or mortgages or credit cards, they struggle to make ends meet already, but it is their jobs that are going and it is their futures that is being blighted.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Exclusive - Clegg's Views on Looz Muze

A mixture of sickness, moving and losing my Dad has kept me from the blogosphere recently, neither contributing or reading much. So much to say about so many things, some of you will be grateful I have kept my thoughts to myself!
With much needed help from Andy Strange I am getting my Euro Campaign website in shape (more on that later) - so have asked a few people for quotes, one being our illustrious leader. Unfortunately I must have been a little obtuse in my request because I got the message back that he was happy to do a tagline for my blog "I always read Linda's blog with a mixture of interest and trepidation!"
Anyway if Duncan or Paul can tell me how to do it I will insert it somewhere on a banner......and Nick........trepidation? Never!!!!