Tag Archives: Election 2015

Election 2015 . . . The First 30 Days

In just over 30 days, as the dust settles from a General Election like no other, a huge spotlight shines upon our nation’s wrecked political and democratic system.

We now have a ‘majority’ government put in power by just 24% of the voters. This means our country is being run by a party that does not have the support of three quarters of the electorate, a third of which could not be bothered to vote!

Unperturbed by this haemorrhaging of support the new government is already using its miniscule majority to push through its agenda whilst it still has unassailable power. The abuse contained within this agenda is truly staggering and shows a contempt for even the minority that voted them into power.

Let’s start with the EU referendum, a political selling point in the Tory campaign to win re-election, which worked very nicely for them and the reality of which is now hitting home. Cameron is bending the whole stunt out of any semblance of an effort to empower the people by dropping the established ‘purdah’ period, thus allowing his party to shape public opinion into the ‘Yes’ vote he needs. To add insult to injury WE will be paying for this propaganda exercise!

To muddy the waters even further he is now seeking to have the referendum held on the same day as elections for the Scottish parliament, Welsh and Northern Ireland assemblies and the London Mayor, flying in the face of the Electoral Commission who believe such an important decision should only be conducted on a separate voting day.

I remember the first speech Cameron made after his appointment as leader of the party when he looked across the despatch box at Tony Blair and said “I am a younger version of you”. My God how profound were those words. He has yet to begin an illegal war but is certainly pulling many loathsome political tricks I am sure Blair would be envious of.

Then there’s our Chancellor, who bragged how he was pulling down National Debt and would make further inroads if re-elected. What he didn’t mention at the time was selling off the governments (our) shareholding in Royal Mail, as well as our stake in RBS at a loss that is blessed by Rothschild’s. All of this whilst reneging on an election promise not to reduce tax credits. An indication perhaps, to the 24%, as to what they have voted in . . . and where his true loyalties lie with ‘austerity’?!

(In the US it has been revealed that it is now mathematically impossible to pay off all of their debt and I have no reason to believe we are not headed in the same direction, as part of the terms of our ‘special relationship’ with their government!)

Political abuse is now rampant, (a 10% pay increase . . . for what!!!!), with a democratic process so skewered out of shape that it is difficult to see how we can return to some semblance of control over it. Morality has long been absent from the mind-set of the political leadership and why should it when so few of the population are needed to produce a government that is untouchable?

In Tony Blair’s favour was his ability to recognise that the political landscape has change out of all recognition to what it was 50 years ago. Gone are the Dockers, Sheet metal workers and Mineworkers, along with many other ‘blue collar’ workers that formed the backbone of the labour party. Today all workers, be they blue or white collar and I include the middle class as well, are facing a common enemy that is the 1%.

In distancing the Labour party from the trade unions he identified this change in potential supporters, which Milliband ignored to his cost. No longer is the traditional battleground of left and right relevant and as long as it is given credibility by the electorate the 1% will continue to strengthen their hold on power and its subsequent abuse.

Within every problem lies its solution and this is the case for the people of this country now. We need a new political party that can unite the ‘middle’ and ‘working’ classes (I HATE those phrases), in returning power to the people through a form of Socialism that recognises the need for effectively managing and promoting the profit motive.

It could have been possible under Blair and Co, if they had played with a straight bat but sadly the lure of untold wealth and power finally took its toll. A repackaged Labour party under a visionary leadership could be our country’s salvation, or a party with similar values, if the old Labour mould cannot be broken.

In the meantime I look at the political carnage of the last 30 days and weep for this country and its people.

 

Until the next time.

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Election 2015 . . . Manipulative and Broken!

election photo

Whilst the dust continues to hover over last Thursdays totally unanticipated results I am reminded of the wisdom of 2000 years ago:

“Nothing is more fickle than people in a crowd, nothing harder to discover than how men intend to vote, nothing trickier that the whole way in which elections work!” Cicero

Days later and I am still unsure about the serious implications upon our democracy of what has happened.

To begin with the opinion polls have had a vast impact upon the electoral proceedings although they are completely unregulated! This has allowed a former Deputy Chairman of the Tory Party, who is not a pollster or member of the British Polling Council, to buy in polling information from other companies, who he is unprepared to disclose and put it out into the mainstream. The fact that all of this information was seriously flawed and used as propaganda is neither questioned nor any responsibility taken.

“There are three kinds of lies: Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics” is a phrase attributed to several authors but its underlying wisdom is pertinent today. With all of the popular pollsters keeping each other company in their poorly analysed data it was the website Number Cruncher Politics that proved to be in contact with reality, predicting correctly that there would be a Tory majority, even before the voting began.

There accuracy was the result of simple hard work in analysing the statistics and patterns of the electoral data over the last 50 years. They were able to substantiate their claims to such an extent that it is possible they delayed the other companies from publishing their latest findings at 7pm on the day, although they came out several hours later and maintained their, now hopelessly inaccurate, stories of a neck and neck race.

These opinion polls almost put our media in the shade but undaunted the Tory press went after Miliband and co with a tenacity that demonstrated just how much hatred he had stoked up in Rupert Murdoch. (And let’s not forget the political strategist responsible for the huge Tory success, another Australian Lynton Crosby, coincidence . . . you decide!)

Again we are letting ourselves down as an electorate by allowing such powerful influence to be wielded over our democracy by someone who in not resident in, nor has a loyalty to our country. His credibility has already been destroyed by the hacking scandal but still he is able to influence how we must live our lives, because of the strength of his global business activities.

When will government grasp the nettle and legislate that if an entity, be it an individual or corporation does not commit to residing or meeting its full tax bill in this country for a prior 5 years, it has no entitlement to influence our democratic process!

We now come to the most emotive of aspects of our broken system as we look at the seats acquired by the voters. I shall simply quote the two obvious examples. The Tories achieved their stunning victory with 11,334,520 votes that gave them 331 seats in Parliament – a government ‘majority’ produced by the majority NOT voting for them!

The Greens on the other hand secured nearly 10% of the Tory vote (1,157,613) and just 1 seat in Parliament! 1.1 million people represented by just one elected representative and each Tory representing 34,243 people is not, by the widest stretches of the imagination, a healthy democracy at work. (Source BBC News)

Not content with these distortions The Sunday Times reported that Cameron is already looking to ‘rearrange’ the boundaries to give the Tories an extra 20 seats at the 2020 election. He knows the only time he can get away with this, which was previously censored by the Lib Dems, is whilst he has a majority and also whilst our attention is being diverted by the EU referendum.

He also knows that after 10 years voters become restless and seek change. He has declared he will be leaving by then and can say he gave the new incumbent every support when this time arrives.

As an electorate, with a growing awareness of what is really going on with our democratic process, we can never become the master of our national destiny until such time as we mend a system that is now only fit for the knacker’s yard. ‘Club’ Westminster is running hopelessly out of control and I shudder to think what abuses we will be subjected to in the next 5 years, with a government now unfettered by coalition.

Scotland and the Scottish people are shinning a light in this direction by producing a true majority government. Perhaps it is now time to get our own house in order . . . and then sort out the EU.

 

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

TTIP Ran Election 2015

I know there are many reading this who formed their political allegiances many years ago and have remained loyal to the present day. I respect that loyalty, I really do and don’t question it. What I do question is whether the political environment in which those allegiances were first committed is the same as that which exists today? Or is that loyalty now being abused, with the growing evidence of how the corporate world has forced itself between the voter and their chosen party?

I have never ever experienced a General Election so devoid of substance or meaning as this one. Nor have I seen such a closely run election fought out by political parties with so little to say about the real issues now facing Society.

People are not idiots. They see and are speaking out about the real challenges we now face: TTIP, Fracking, Debt, Financial instability, Technology that is allowed to steal more of their jobs and a social infrastructure that is being deliberately collapsed to increase privatisation, all in the pursuit of profit.

As the parties continue to avoid these issues that avoidance is now seen as intentional. Debate is crushed because of the fear of being held publicly accountable. The introduction of the Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014, or to you and me “The Gagging Act”, simply verifies this.

The act was designed, we are told, to solve the problems of paid lobbyists directing our government for the benefit of vested interest. Instead of gagging lobbyist however, it has gagged civil society! NGO’s and Charities, with our wellbeing at the heart of their work, are now restricted from voicing their concerns about abuses to Society because it could be interpreted as ‘favouring or disadvantaging’ any major party. What a blatant corrosion of the democratic process and more worryingly, something that aligns closely with the ethos of TTIP!

The deep concern about this dreaded trade deal grows, as it now nears completion in continued secrecy. Not only will it sound the death knell of democracy but neuter the power of our elected representatives, thereby effectively neutering the power of the electorate . . . hence the secrecy!

All of this has created an environment in which we are no longer seeing purposeful leadership but people with deft political skills slipping, sliding and dodging all manner of popular concerns, widening the gap between the electors and the elected and increasing their pent up worry, frustration and anger.

This was made abundantly clear when people had their only chance to confront the main leaders on BBC Question Time. The audience was branded the ‘Stars’ of the show and rightly so. Their anger was palpable and directed at ALL the leaders, demonstrating a collective vehemence at the social irresponsibility and lack of future direction coming out of Westminster.

The atmosphere at the centre of this election and the level of elector frustration can, I believe, be laid squarely at the feet of TTIP, even before it has come into force, with its prioritising profit over social cohesion and wellbeing.

Political leaders are kow-towing to their corporate masters in their irresponsible support of the bailout of the banks and their lack of commitment in what they say they can achieve for the people. It demonstrates they no longer have the power that they had at the last election, just 5 short years ago, to rule this country in the best interests of the people.

People sense this, as their elected representatives consult their corporate lords and masters, the banks and Brussels before legislating, or not, on Society’s needs. Is this what ‘career politicians’ are all about? Have they willingly hobbled their power and ours, because a ‘career’ in politics is now about social networking the corridors of Westminster, in a ‘5 year CV building apprenticeship’ that will take them into lucrative jobs in the corporate world?

Our democracy has been sold down the river and the future is bleak for everyone, other than the very rich. The only way to reverse this trend must come from a government who is strong enough to make a stand, knowing it has the full support of the people and fortified by party members who know their subject and are passionate about change.

If we cannot find such people the last 5 years will pale into insignificance compared with the democratic abuse we can expect with a fully functioning TTIP.

We must break the tightening grip of Neoliberalism and bring people back to the ballot boxes by involving them. That can only be achieved by a party that speaks to them, listens to them and can demonstrate that, above all else, IT CARES ABOUT THEM!

This election and the anger it has unleashed, is a warning bell that we can no longer remain complacent, or the children now entering education will have even less of a future than those now coming out of that same corrupted process.

Whatever the results of this nebulous election, we owe them and ourselves so much more!

Until the next time.

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Election 2015 . . . Making Money Respectable

A political commentator has observed that the election manifestoes are not so much about the management of this country but purely its finances. An insightful observation about the real power that is now shaping our lives. No longer is it our politicians, or the democratic process but international financiers deciding how we manage their money.

I have alluded before to how producing money is like watering a garden. Whoever controls the supply of water and manages the tap has absolute control over what grows and what dies. All of the money that is in circulation on this Planet comes from just two ‘taps’. 5% comes from governments printing their own money and 95% comes from private banks printing and lending it to governments and the rest of us!

95% of every Pound, Dollar, Euro, Peseta etc. in circulation is a bank IOU. How it works is best illustrated by our credit cards. You get your first credit card and go out and buy a bottle of wine to celebrate. You give the shop your card, which they process and your credit card account has its first debit of, say £10.

That transaction has just created £10 of ‘money’ that the bank has printed on your statement out of thin air. Yes, that’s all there is to it. No cash is taken out of their account to do this, they have simply created a ‘loan’ on a computer out of your transaction to buy the wine and on which you now have to pay them interest.

When you clear your card statement at the end of the month that money disappears and comes back again when you buy something else OR get some cash. Yes, when you take cash out of your account no money leaves the banks account, they simply print some notes, again out of thin air and lend them to you.

“Ah, wait a minute”, you are saying, “My account is in credit so it’s my money”. Sadly not! That money came from somewhere else to start with in exactly the same way as your credit card ‘cash’, as a computerised interest bearing loan. Whether you are an individual, a government or corporation, whenever you need money, 95% of it has to be borrowed from private banks who simply print it into existence and earn from it, giving a ‘promise’ that its value will be OK!

Banks are private companies and in business to make profits. They have now become so powerful, as sole guardians of the global ‘tap’, they are no longer accountable to governments and can make as many loans as they like and to whomever they choose.

The bias here and what we are now facing with this election, is that banks lend their money solely upon the profits they can generate and their confidence in who they are lending to, not the needs of Society or the economy.

Greece is a perfect example. Here, as elsewhere, the banks are holding back the money they could print to stimulate that economy because they are unsure they will get it back. The fact that it was their scurrilous moneylending and gambling that created the problem in the first place is submerged in media propaganda.

Worse, in order to maintain their control over global currencies, they must make an example of Greece to stop others from doing the responsible thing and reneging on their ‘Odious’ debt. (See earlier article: http://tinyurl.com/lus7zrb)

Returning now to our garden analogy and the emphasis upon finance in this year’s manifestoes. As the majority of money is produced by the banks it becomes clear that they have now virtually shut off the tap, using their ‘austerity measures’ to slowly steal public resources from governments obligated to them through debt.

It is here that I despair of all the political parties currently smiling and spouting any nonsense to get into power. Without exception they are ignoring the one issue that would resolve all the problems we now face, by simply taking back the right of government to print and produce its own money.

In so doing they could charge interest but unlike the banks who keep it, they could recirculate that interest back into the community as jobs, healthcare and a plethora of social services, which would see that government returned to office for decades to come.

Why? Because the electorate will have found a government who truly cares about the people. That care would be regularly demonstrated in the arguments about where the new wealth is spent, rather than where we have to cut back in order to prioritise interest payments to the banks. Money would again be our servant, rather than enslaving us as our master!

That, my friends, is making money respectable!

 

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Election 2015 . . . DUH!!

I watched a lovely drama last night about Noah building the Ark, his hardship in doing this as well as bringing up a family left me with a satisfying feel good experience, although I am not religious.

This nourishing programme was then followed by the reality of 21st century life, dominated by the start of ‘Election 2015’ and our leaders telling us how their next term in office will ensure our return to prosperity after such a difficult recession. As the intro music to the News died I switched off!

Our leaders declare a return to prosperity whilst omitting that it was their actions that created the hell in the first place! Was it not them who helped carry out the biggest heist in the history of our species, with tax payer money we thought was ring fenced for public services blithely handed over to the banks?

To add insult to injury that money was then lent back to us to keep us going and on which we then had to pay those same banks interest! Not only that but we were also made to sell off our public utilities at huge discounts as a condition of the loan agreement.

Unlike Noah and his family our kids can’t provide for their own homes. There are few good jobs to help them pay off their debts and which their expensive education was designed for, let alone buy a house at todays inflated prices. This has a knock on effect because renting is just as toxic, with landlords upping their prices every six months because they can and stuff the poor tenants.

This is the reality I mentioned earlier, along with having oil and gas companies drilling under the homes of those lucky enough to have been able to afford to buy, without their permission. If we add to this the pointlessness of voting, as elector power is now being undermined by TTIP that has been negotiated in huge secrecy, plus growing Surveillance, we have reached a democratic tipping point.

There are just three critical issues this election, which all parties are ignoring and I can see no way forward for Society until they are resolved, namely:

  1. Democracy: Cameron, in offering a referendum on such an important subject as the EU if he is re-elected, epitomises the career politician at his or her worst. A complete lack of any vision or direction is compensated for by outright bribery and a further total lack of respect for the voter on something which, in any healthy democracy, would be seen as an automatic right of the people. Society requires the re-establishment of meaningful democracy with People Driven Referendums on any subject that has enough public interest and at any time. It happens in Switzerland and they are one of the most stable countries on the Planet.
  2. Banking: Our global financial system is paralysed by bad debt from the 2008 debacle. Further debt that now permeates every area of Society, including the sick and our children’s education, has been encouraged to resolve the problem. When this credit bubble finally bursts the horrors of 2008 will pale into insignificance. If parliament exercised its right to produce and control our own currency, as other countries have done when confronting the bullying financial tactics of the IMF and World Bank we could, at a stroke, free ourselves from debt that is rendering us impotent to the theft of our public services by privatisation, unemployment and endless corporate abuse.
  3. Government: Over the centuries Westminster has turned from a place of debate and democracy to a ‘Club of Two Parties’, cosy, comfortable and corrupt! It no longer serves the people as the party system suffocates any worthy politicians who do not tow the party line. Modern technology can open government up to the people for greater direct involvement in effectively influencing how we are governed. Nothing short of total transparency can restore the public’s confidence in a flawed and outdated process that has robbed them of their power and caused deeply entrenched distrust and cynicism.

Tackling these three core issues can return power to the people, by taking it away from the Banks and corporations, to then resolve all of Society’s current problems. This must be the crux of this year’s election, I would suggest, if we are to become masters of our destiny.

It’s not rocket science but the simple application of our democratic and human rights. Hopefully the aftermath of a hung Parliament will provide the breeding ground for such initiatives, both here and abroad.

Until the next time.

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Are We Sleepwalking Into The Next Election? (Part 3 of 6) . . . Debt and a Predatory Economy

Nathan_RothschildPublic Domain

“I care not what puppet is placed upon the throne of England to rule the Empire on which the sun never sets. The man who controls the British money supply controls the British Empire, and I control the British money supply.”                                    Nathan Meyer Rothschild  (1777 – 1836)

 

In this new millennium 21st century Society is saddled with systems way past their sell by date.

. . . A 15th century democratic system, complete with glass ceiling

. . . An 11th century monetary system that increasingly holds the world to ransom

. . . A 2000 year old surveillance system being replaced by modern technology

Voting with what we now have will never solve the problems we now face

 In this series of 6 posts I will offer a view on why I think we might be sleepwalking into Election 2015

Part 3: Debt and a Predatory Economy

The money supply for a country is no different to the money supply for family. We have bills we pay from our earnings (Taxes) and when the expenses become too much we either cut back on our spending, or take out a loan for a fixed period from our bank to cover the additional costs.

Countries are run in the same fashion but their loans are provided from a central bank by becoming money circulated within the economy, which can be a good thing or a bad thing depending upon who is running the bank!

Over the millennia the battle has raged between the banks and politicians as to who is responsible for this critical, powerful (and lucrative) job. When government prints its own money and circulates it through public banks Society benefits from a financial infrastructure that can reduce, or even eliminate personal taxation. This is possible because the interest paid on the money government provides is recirculated back into Society to finance the public services etc., effectively alleviating the need for income tax.

When private banks are in control however, they are in the business of making profits Continue reading