Sunday, 20 December 2009


'If the climate was a bank, the rich nations would have fixed it.'

Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela

Tuesday, 15 December 2009


It's unfair that you pay for the NHS all your life, and are then denied care in your old age.

I support free care for older people - that's fair.

Monday, 14 December 2009


It's unfair that you have to pay more tax on the income you've earned than on unearned income.

The Green Party supports the abolition of national insurance, which is fair.

Sunday, 13 December 2009


It's unfair that only the better off can afford university.

Green Party policies on tuition fees and student grants are fair.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009


It's unfair that millions are unemployed while others can be required to work very long hours.

Green Party policy for a 35-hour week is fair.

Monday, 7 December 2009


This new theory, which I am publishing today, states that when interviewed in the media, given a free choice, people will always tend to reply 'absolutely' rather than 'yes'. (with apologies to A. Einstein)

I particularly like verses 8, 10 and 11 of Carol Ann Duffy's new version of the old Christmas song. In case you haven't heard them (and even if you have), here they are:

Eighth Day of Christmas

One milked money to mend her moat.
Two milked voters to float her boat.
Three milked Parliament to flip her flat.
Four milked Government to snip her cat.
Five milked the dead for close-up tears.
Six milked the tax-payer for years and years and years ...
Seven milked the system to Botox her brow.
Eight milked herself - the selfish cow.

Tenth Day of Christmas

Lords don't leap They sleep.

Eleventh Day of Christmas

We paid the bluddy piper fir Scotland's Royal Bank;
twa pipers each fir Fred and Phil, fir Finlay, Fraser, Frank.
Too big tae fail!
The wee dog laughed!
The dish ran awa' wi' the spoon ...
We paid the bluddy pipers, but we dinnae call the tune.

You won't find these verses on Nadine's blog.

Saturday, 5 December 2009


It's unfair that public money is wasted on botched privatisation schemes, and that hospitals and surgeries are treated like businesses rather than public services.

I support a fair deal for those needing health care. I oppose cuts, closures and privatisation. I want a programme of locally accountable services.

Thursday, 3 December 2009


It's unfair that the government bails out the bankers who got us into this mess, but then won't ensure those very bankers provide the necessary credit for families or for small and local business.

I want a fair deal based on community banks, credit unions and mutuals that can provide realistic loans for families and for small and local businesses in Mid-Bedfordshire.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009


It's commendable that President Obama considered the new US strategy for Afghanistan with great care and diligence. More than three months of cogitation, and ten meetings with top brass. A major improvement on the shoot-from-the-hip approach of Bush.

However, then it's downhill all the way. Sadly, these months of deliberations have not produced a credible strategy. This is not the sort of change we were led to believe would define Obama's presidency. It's a plan to escalate this futile war, the second longest war in America's history after Vietnam. After eight years of war, another 30,000 US forces, 500 more British , and others, to take the total of foreign troops to the level of those of the Soviet Union in their disastrous Afghan conflict.

For what purpose? To prop up a highly corrupt government. It will not make Britain's streets safer, or serve any humanitarian purpose. It is not an exit strategy, it's an escalation of war.

This pointless occupation of Afghanistan should end. All Nato forces should be withdrawn immediately.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009


An eminent group of UK scientists, and a retired general, have reported "it's a total absurdity that we should have 100 tonnes of separated plutonium sitting up at Sellafield in tin cans ... . There is no policy to deal with the deadly material, which was reclaimed from used nuclear fuel. It's the largest stockpile in the world, a potential target for terrorists."

Last September I was in the Lake District, and took time out to inspect the Sellafield visitor centre. It wasn't my first visit. Many years ago, when it was called Calder Hall, we were shown into the reactor control room, and stood on top of the nuclear reactor. Of course, now you get nowhere near. There's a shiny new facility, outside the perimeter security, which presents a sanitised clean view of the nuclear industry. What shocked me most was the emphasis everywhere on private enterprise, shareholders and profits.

There is no PLAN A to deal with the deadly plutonium, let alone a PLAN B. Meanwhile, our government wants to build more nuclear power stations, and upgrade our nuclear weapons, to produce yet more nuclear waste to add to the dustbin.