Thursday, 31 March 2016

Vice-headmaster Liam Nolan profiting from "academy" system.

The state of UK education is lamentable and the fact is that so-called "academies" are simply no substitute for the grammar schools so foolishly destroyed by Labour.
Educational standards have fallen sharply compared to those of the rest of the world, literacy and numeracy are rare outside private schools and today's so-called A-levels represent a standard barely up to what O-level used to be thirty years ago.
Vice-headmaster uses "academy" system to pay himself twice.
Convicted sex offender Liam Nolan is already paid £130,000 p.a. but used the "academy" system to siphon off another £160,000 per year straight in to his own pocket.

The left-wingers are furious now with Liam Nolan, but they should blame themselves for the policy of putting a disgraced man like that in charge of even one school, let alone five. If he had been thrown out, as he should have been, when first convicted by a court for gross public indecency, none of this would have happened. In my opinion, he is not fit to teach, let alone be a head master.


With acknowledgements to Another Angry Voice

Perry Beeches - A warning for every school in England



One of the most appalling measures contained within George Osborne's 2016 "Budget of Failure" was the announcement of the outrageous Tory policy of force privatising every publicly owned school in England into the hands of unaccountable private sector pseudo-charities (many owned and operated by major Tory party donors).

Forcibly taking schools out of local authority control (even if the local community strongly opposes the plans) and handing them over (property deeds and all) to the kind of people who are queueing up to get their hands on chunks of free infrastructure and big slices of the taxpayer funded education budgets is an appalling idea.

The fact that these academy chains are pretty much impossible to remove once they've been gifted control of the school (no matter how poor the results, or how much fraud is going on there) is one of the major objections, several other serious objections are detailed in this article.

Perry Beeches

Just a week after the Tory plot to privatise every publicly owned school in England was unveiled a damning report into the Perry Beeches academy chain (which runs five schools in Birmingham) was released.

Here are some of the findings:
Perry Beeches diverted almost £1.3 million in taxpayers' money into secretive off-the-books payments to a company called "Nexus Schools Limited".
Financial fraud was committed because payments to Nexus were not included in the academy chain's 2013-14 accounts.
Nexus subcontracted work the school gave them to a company called "Liam Nolan Limited".
The sole director of Liam Nolan Limited is one Liam Nolan, who just happens to be the Accounting Officer and Chief Executive of Perry Beeches Academy Trust!
Liam Nolan did not register his interests in "Liam Nolan Limited" and the Perry Beeches chair of governors also had an undeclared business interest with a director of Nexus Schools Limited.
In setting up a circular off-the-books payment scam to pay himself an additional salary, the Perry Beeches financial officer Liam Nolan has clearly broken academies accounting rules and Charity Commission rules, yet the only punishment from central government is a written notice to improve, not a sacking or a criminal prosecution.
Liam Nolan has already faced calls to resign after one of the Perry Beeches schools was put into special measures in 2015. His excuse for his track record of failure and financial mismanagement is that he's "not a business manager" just a "headteacher". Funnily enough he didn't use this "just a head teacher" line in 2014 when he was demanding an increase in his £120,000 per year salary!
Perry Beeches was also made to pay back £118,291 of government funding after fraudulently claiming free school meal payments despite breaking the rules by keeping no records of kids receiving free school meals for six years.
The Tory government is so unconcerned at this kind of failure and financial fraud designed to secretively transfer taxpayers' cash into academy executives' pockets that they're allowing Perry Beeches to open a sixth school in 2017!

Privatising the entire English education system and putting people like Liam Nolan in charge of huge taxpayer funded education budgets sounds like a crackpot idea to most people, but the Tories love it because it fits in with their core ideology of transferring as much public cash into private pockets as possible.

Back in 2013 (when Liam Nolan's off-the-books financial fraud was going on) David Cameron described the Perry Beeches chain as "a great success story and one to celebrate" and the former education secretary Michael Gove even praised the academy chain as having "excellent leadership and management"!

The Tories aren't just OK with academy chain directors topslicing education budgets to pay themselves obscene six figure salaries and ripping off the taxpayer even more through opaque outsourcing frauds like the Perry Beeches scam, that's what the whole academisation agenda is actually all about. The Tories hate the public sector with a burning ideological passion. They don't want not-for-profit public bodies running schools in a democratically accountable manner, they want schools run by unaccountable packs of profiteers overseeing irremovable regional monopolies.

The Tory spin on this story is that financial mismanagement like this can be picked up because of the financial rules they've drawn up for academy schools, but this argument is catastrophically undermined by two things.

1. Liam Nolan's off-the-books financial fraud went on for ages and was only investigated after a tip-off from a whistleblower that he was claiming a second salary from school funds.

2. There are plenty of other examples of financial mismanagement at other academy chains (like theAcademies Enterprise Trust), and presumably a lot more that have gone under the radar because nobody in the know has tipped anyone off about it.

An additional problem with this feeble justification is the fact that Laim Nolan is still in a job. What's the point of having supposedly rigorous financial rules if there is no punishment whatever for those who break them?

What we can do

Given the appalling scale of failure and financial mismanagement at Perry Beeches, one might have imagined that the director who set up the off-the-books circular payment fraud should be facing criminal charges for embezzling public funds, or facing the sack at least, however he's keeping his job and his six figure taxpayer funded salary and Perry Beeches are free to continue expanding their operations in Birmingham.

This is the fanatically right-wing vision the Tories have for every school in England, whether schools want to be run by a bunch of topslicing Tory party cronies or not.
If you oppose the plan to force privatise every school in England you can write to your MP to raise your concerns.
There are also two petitions against the Tory plot to force privatise every school in England. One calling for the whole plan to be scrapped and another calling for a public inquiry and a referendum before such an extreme education system reform can go ahead.
You could take a look at the anti-academies alliance website and follow them on Twitter or Facebook.

You could spread awareness by sharing one of my articles about the ongoing Tory privatisation of the English education system. This article, the one about the damage that has already been done or the one about the Tory plot to force privatise every school in England.


Monday, 28 March 2016

"The Lahore attacks are just the latest atrocity in a war on Christians" - John Allen

By John L Allen Jr, Spectator via Anglican Mainstream

[…]According to the Pew Forum, between 2006 and 2010 Christians faced some form of discrimination, either de jure or de facto, in a staggering total of 139 nations, which is almost three-quarters of all the countries on earth. According to the Center for the Study of Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts, an average of 100,000 Christians have been killed in what the centre calls a ‘situation of witness’ each year for the past decade. That works out to 11 Christians killed somewhere in the world every hour, seven days a week and 365 days a year, for reasons related to their faith.
In effect, the world is witnessing the rise of an entire new generation of Christian martyrs. The carnage is occurring on such a vast scale that it represents not only the most dramatic Christian story of our time, but arguably the premier human rights challenge of this era as well.

http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2016/03/the-war-on-christians/
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http://anglicanmainstream.org/the-lahore-attacks-are-just-the-latest-atrocity-in-a-war-on-christians/

Sunday, 27 March 2016

HOW TO CONVINCE PEOPLE THAT 2 + 2 = 5

Image result for school blackboard

1. Tell them that it's old-fashioned to believe that 2+2 = 4 and that the world has progressed from there.
2. Tell them that the total of 2 + 2 must be decided by people's personal, subjective feelings, not by out-dated rules, or absurd systems.
3. Show them a lot of rich, famous well-dressed celebs who are prepared to say that 2 + 2 = 5.
4. Form groups in every college, profession and church of people who say they are bullied and victimized for saying 2 +2 =5, and just need a "safe space". Give these groups funding out of tax revenue.
6. Get journalists who think 2 +2 =5 to take over most of the newspapers and TV stations.
7.Teach children in schools from the age of 4 upwards that 2 + 2 =5. Tell them that most of the worst massacres in history were carried out by people who believed 2 +2= 4. Hitler thought that 2 +2 =4 and look what that led to! You must be a Nazi if you agree with him.
8.Tell people who disagree that they are "haters" and "bigots", who are suffering from a strange disease known as "pentaphobia". This disease is shameful and stigmatizes both them and their entire family.  Call them all the most extreme terms you can find in a dictionary e.g, "abhorrent" and "vile".
9. Tell people that if they won't accept that 2+2 =5 they are guilty of physical violence. Say they are inciting hatred and murder. Circulate pictures of victims of "pentaphobic" attack all over the world. (It is easy to fake such stories and pictures. No one will know, or hardly anyone.)
10. Get "pentaphobic" people fired from their jobs, their public positions and their social networks. Boycott their businesses. Shun and revile them. Ridicule and censor them. Tell them they are old, ugly and an embarrassment. Abuse them and harass them by every means. If a little boy at the Emperor's grand procession calls out "But two and two makes four!" bundle him into a car and have him taken away by the secret police...never to be heard of again.



Saturday, 26 March 2016

This Easter Support and Pray for All Persecuted Christians Around the World

A man who converted to Christianity was stabbed to death on Tuesday last week. It happened in Bangladesh but similar cases are reported around the world on a day to day basis.

Every week we hear news of Christians all over the world being attacked, killed, tortured and imprisoned just because of their faith. It is never headline news here in the aggressively atheistical West.

DONATE on this link to help Open Doors defend and support persecuted Christians all over the world this Easter
http://www.opendoorsuk.org/?gclid=Cj0KEQjw5ti3BRD89aDFnb3SxPcBEiQAssnp0kSFlIrR_pAcZkwH9op0WbBIyrcpBe7GaukkFkGk1wYaAs5W8P8HAQ

bangladesh_police


Assailants with knives stabbed a Christian convert to death in northern Bangladesh on Tuesday, the latest in a series of attacks on minorities in the Muslim-majority nation.
The South Asian country has seen a surge in Islamist violence in which liberal activists, members of minority Muslim sects and other religious groups have been targeted.
Police said three attackers came on a motorbike and stabbed Hossain Ali, 68, while he was having his morning walk in Kurigram, north of Dhaka.
“They left the scene exploding crude bombs to create panic,” Kurigram district police chief Tobarak Ullah told Reuters by telephone.
Ali converted to Christianity from Islam in 1999, he added.
“We are not sure whether Islamist militants carried out the attack,” he said, adding that the pattern of killing bore the hallmarks of recent attacks by Islamist militants.
Three men were picked up for questioning, he said.
Over the last few months, Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the killings of two foreigners, attacks on members of minority Muslim sects and other religious groups, but police say domestic militant group Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen is behind the attacks.
At least five militants of Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen have been killed in shootouts since November, as security forces have stepped up a crackdown on militants seeking to make the moderate Muslim nation of 160 million a sharia-based state.
- See more at: http://www.christiansinpakistan.com/christian-convert-stabbed-to-death-in-sneak-attack/#sthash.1vUseEX6.dpuf

http://www.christiansinpakistan.com/christian-convert-stabbed-to-death-in-sneak-attack/



Battle for London

Labour mayoral candidate for London Sadiq Khan is making big claims that he can solve its severe problems of transport and housing shortage by waving the usual magic wand  - blaming the Tories. The fact is that the population of London increases by 10,000 each month and none of Labour's policies are going to change that in the slightest. They invited this. 
Sadiq Khan's campaign leaflets show him wearing a hard hat on a building site. 



What a curious thing, since he is by training a lawyer, who has never worked on a building site in his life. He specialises in "Human Rights" i.e. helping violent rapists and terrorists to avoid punishment and run up huge bills in legal aid. Under Human Rights legislation, criminals in gaol have sued our government and got the vote, which is outrageous, and their living conditions improved. They are laughing.
And the housing policies Sadiq Khan now offers, are identical in every way to the ones he not long ago rubbished when they were put forward by the Tories.
Admittedly under Boris Johnson everything in London has got worse. He wants to grab more money in congestion charges - already £11.50 per day.  Transport is so gridlocked that it can take one and half hours to get from Kings Cross to Battersea.  And it is costing us all more and more. Beastly Boris made it impossible to travel at all on the Tube or the buses unless you pay by Oyster card. Introducing Oyster card was one thing  - making it compulsory is another. This silly extremist policy means that if you arrive in London without one, you have to buy a one-day travel card, at a minimum cost of £5.  And to buy it you have to stand in a long queue of people with huge suitcases, asking the way to get to Buckingham Palace from Victoria and not understanding the answer because they don't speak English anyway. It can take half an hour at some large stations. When you are in a great hurry for an important appointment, your Oyster card always runs out of funds. You think it is simple to top it up  - until you find that two out of every four machines are "not in service" while one of the others does not take notes. It will allow you pay £20 or more in coins, which nobody is likely to be carrying. There is only one machine out of the four that will take notes, and in front of that, there is of course a long queue...
Bus and tube travel for anyone over 60 used to be free. Now, travel passes are being withheld until you reach 67 or more.  You can bet that Labour would not reverse that.
One of the worst things about Oyster cards is that they are subject to random technical hitches. Uniformed inspectors roam the metropolis in pairs, boarding buses, examining Oyster cards and telling people who thought they had paid that they somehow haven't. This could never have happened when people paid in cash or used a printed bus pass. If your card is found not to have somehow registered with the machine, you can be fined £80 on the spot. To many people, that is a huge amount of money. Not of course to Boris  - or to Sadiq Khan, I imagine. Being a Yuman Rights lawyer is a very, very lucrative occupation.  So don't believe all that "council estate boy" image. Sadiq Khan is a career politician with his nose in the trough just like Beastly Boris.


http://www.standard.co.uk/news/mayor/sadiq-khan-os-housing-policy-like-one-he-previously-rubbished-a3182541.html

Friday, 25 March 2016

How Pagan is Easter?

The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science is a group consisting mainly of Richard Dawkins himself and a couple of acolytes. It gets huge funding from somewhere to carry out persistent attacks on religion in general and Christianity in particular. Luckily a lot of scientists don't feel it is necessary to carry on this tiresome feud between science and religion.
At my local church there are two or three top scientists in the congregation and one of them has won a Nobel Prize.
And that is by no means unusual for any church.


This is superficial and like most of what Dawkins circulates can at best be regarded as a tendentious half-truth. 
Easter does roughly coincide with a great pagan fertility festival. And yes, the name Ishtar - Astarte - Esther in the Bible - is the name of a goddess worshipped widely. Very likely the Nordic Eostre and Old English Ostara are related to the same name. There is no proof at all that the name Ishtar was pronounced "Easter" and in fact it is a transcription from ancient scripts and texts, some chipped out of stone or baked in mud, where the pronunciation is a matter for speculation. You can't assume that the word Easter was pronounced in our modern way even a few hundred years ago, let alone thousands.
The name sometimes spelled as Ishtar is related to Astarte, Queen of Heaven, a goddess widely worshipped in ancient times in Mesopotamia, Syria and all over Asia Minor. There are similar images of the Egyptian mother-goddess Isis.

Semiramis and Tammuz

The Greek ἀστήρ  meaning a star is also derived from the same root. Hence "astrology". Astarte was the Queen of Heaven, and a star is a heavenly body.
Rabbits were not a symbol of the Babylonian Ishtar, but were associated with the later Nordic cult of Ostara, a goddess of Spring and the dawn worshipped by the Saxons and sometimes known as Oestre or Eastre. Her name is also the root of the word "East" which means of course the part of the sky where the dawn appears.
Astarte/Ishtar was worshipped at a Spring festival which was held at the time of the first full moon after the Spring Equinox. This date then became the date of the Jewish Pesach (the Passover) and it was at the time of the Passover that Jesus was crucified. So that is the reason why Christians chose to celebrate Easter at the time of the traditional Spring Festival. Across most of Europe, and of Christendom, Easter is not called Easter, it is called after the Pesach e.g. Paques in French, Pasqua in Italian, Пасха in Russian,  Pashkët in Albanian  etc.  In Polish it is Wielkanoc.
By Roman times, there were many cults flourishing in different parts of the Empire. The cult of Tammuz (known to the Greeks as Adonis) and the cult of Isis and Osiris, both centre on a miraculous return from death to life, and the power of a god to regenerate.

I wonder what aspect of this pagan festival Richard Dawkins wants to restore. Does he want to revive the Babylonian worship of sex by means of temple prostitution? Or simply the focus on crop-planting and veneration for life?
The Babylonians knew that crop-planting had a lot to do with the phases of the moon, as well as the solar cycle. The New Moon is a good time to plant seeds, and most above-ground crops do better if planted under a waxing moon. If you are like me and sensitive to moon phases you will have felt a strong urge in the past two weeks as the moon reached its fullest to go and plant tomatoes, beans, artichokes, herbs and spinach. It is not too late for root-crops now, as they do well planted when the moon begins to wane. Potatoes and beetroot will be quite happy if stuck in the ground now.  
What the Babylonians did was to plant their crops in Spring as the moon approached its fullest point, then go to the temple to offer sacrifices to ensure a good harvest.
Let's not be too nostalgic for the good old days of the Anglo-Saxons. They did actually practice human sacrifice. So did the ancient Norse peoples who worshipped Ostara. Christianity caught on for many reasons but one could be because people with young children didn't want to see them having their throats ritually slit. The same could be said for sending your twelve-year-old daughter to the temple of Ishtar in Babylon to be ritually "sacrificed" by prostitution to a stranger. Thank God Christianity came along.

So if Richard Dawkins wants to make himself sick eating chocolate eggs and bunnies, that is entirely up to him. I will be celebrating Easter in my own way, because without a reverence for life and veneration for the miraculous, something is just lacking from our existence.





http://www.carlanayland.org/essays/human_sacrifice.htm

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Laurence Armstrong Hughes

Laurence Armstrong Hughes has a website where he says he is a composer of music. He also has a blog called Musings, which is all about himself, another blog called The New Lyricist which is all about his music, and his own YouTube channel called Laurence:The New Lyricist, on which he says he is going to upload examples of his work. A man, in short, with an overwhelming interest in himself.
The Youtube channel doesn't seem to have any music uploaded to it as yet. Judging from his main website it is not a prolific output. Now aged well into his sixties, he is certainly not competing with Mozart as an infant prodigy. One of these compositions, titled "Severn and Somme " is a setting of six poems by Ivor Gurney.

Laurence Hughes

Since his blog gives a link to a review of this work, which was performed once, we might as well quote what the reviewer said.

After this came the first of the three world premieres of the evening, Laurence Armstrong-Hughes’s Severn and Somme, musical settings of six poems by Ivor Gurney. It is difficult to say too much about this piece mainly because the balance between harp, oboe, and voice meant that the words were a little more difficult to comprehend, and perhaps better suited to a smaller space than Keble Chapel. The instrumentalists here did a commendable job with the piece, but on looking back at the texts, the opposition of the title was perhaps not exploited to its full potential. That said, the desolation of the third song, describing the memories of a lost loved one, was beautifully executed, and provided a foil to the bucolic landscape of the other movements.


It sounds as if the "world premiere" may turn out to be a unique and unparalleled occasion.


I happen to have some personal acquaintance with Laurence Hughes, who lives on a canal boat called "Salaga". A canal boat can be quite a tolerable home for a single person with few possessions. He told me and other friends that he constantly moved "Salaga" from one mooring to another on the Oxford canal in order to avoid paying the charges. He mentioned that his boat was unregistered, whatever that means. He didn't want some inspectors or other to catch him doing this. That's what he said, anyway.




Salaga at Kennington 2014

It's not surprising if he cannot pay, since you don't usually earn a lot for composing his sort of stuff, even in larger quantities. Laurence used to have a job, in one of the Oxford colleges, in some non-academic capacity, but he gave it up after confiding to me several times that he had been bullied. I thought this was terrible and asked him why he did not complain to the management or go to the union. I also encouraged him to seek help from the university's Occupational Health Officer, whom I happened to know. I told her all about his problems, sent him all her contact details and got information about getting help. He refused to take any steps, which was odd if his complaints of being bullied were true.

In return for my help, he publicly heaped me with abuse, using terms such as "vile" and "abhorrent" for anyone who opposes same-sex marriage. While complaining about bullying, in private, he is very quick to take any chance to publicly bully other people. He is not a victim of bullying, he is the real bully. Well, that's the New Lyricism for you!


The last I heard of Laurence Hughes, he was hanging around UKIP meetings in Oxford telling people that he was "destitute". He said it so often that other people were getting embarrassed. No one really knew what to do about it. 

Well, Laurence, it must be "vile" and "abhorrent" for you to be destitute.  It must be highly inconvenient to lack the money to pay the registration fees  and mooring fees on your boat. If an inspector ever caught up with you, that would certainly be vile and abhorrent. It must be "vile" and "abhorrent" to be surrounded by so much bullying, even if most of it is imaginary, and even if you are a bully yourself.
 So I have a suggestion to make. Crowd-funding! Please would as many people as possible who can spare 50p, or even 20p, send it to Laurence Hughes, and help to keep Salaga afloat. Don't judge him on what he has achieved, Just be kind and charitable.
















http://theoxfordculturereview.com/2014/11/15/review-requiem-for-the-fallen/


http://www.laurencearmstronghughes.com/


http://www.laurencearmstronghughes.com/musings.htm

https://thenewlyricist.wordpress.com/

Friday, 18 March 2016

Budget Swipes at Our Oldest, Poorest and Most Vulnerable citizens

Nauseating was the word for George Osborne's performance delivering his Budget this week. He decided to introduce a sugar tax because the total tax revenue from other sources is so far below what he had envisaged when he originally refused to do so six months ago.

George-Osborne-chocolate-GET.jpg

Okay, but the way he explained his U-turn was sheer hypocrisy, He prefaced the announcement with a long spiel about how he couldn't justify any other policy to his children and grandchildren. What would he say to them in the distant future, when they asked him what he had done in the war against obesity and diabetes? How could he tell them that he had known the risks, yet had done nothing?
That is not what our children and grandchildren will ask us. They will ask why they cannot afford to buy homes and why we are leaving them a heritage of debt well over a £ trillion. They also if they are intelligent ask why we threw away so many freedoms and rights that were part of our way of life.
Osborne justifies his sugar tax as a form of social engineering. Tax will be a disincentive. It is a form of  aversion therapy! Like a rat in a maze, touching a wall and getting electrocuted. those who buy sugary drinks (which I never touch) will now spring back in revulsion.

Is that how he justifies his cruel and callous cut to disability payments for the old, the handicapped and the sick? Is that also aversion therapy? More than 600,000 depend on these small weekly payments to afford  help carrying out the routine of everyday living which is, to them a task. The PIP, Personal Independence Payment, is pathetically small, probably less than George Osborne pays when he takes some pals for a round of drinks. But to those who claim it, it means the difference between being able to carry on living in their own home, or having to go into an institution.
Cutting it means they will have to ask their relatives to do everything on a voluntary basis  - or they will have to apply for a place in a "home" which costs an absolute fortune. 
Many of t hem will be unable to go on working without this essential help.  And the jobs of the helpers will also be pulled from under their feet.

Well, let's see if the aversion therapy works. Let's see if this makes fewer people choose to become disabled.  
Personally, I am sickened by this government's readiness to deprive the poorest in our society of the little they get, and to find massive sums, £ billions every year, to send abroad for bank bail-outs, subsidies to EU countries in an economic mess, or largesse to those who have never paid into our social security system.


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35813973

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3498376/Ministers-retreat-claim-1-2billion-disability-benefit-cuts-just-suggestion-days-George-Osborne-confirmed-plan-Budget.html

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Council House Multi-Millionaires

Channel 4 Dispatches did a TV report yesterday on the private landlords who are buying strings of former council properties, houses and flats, to re-let them at a higher rent.



This is not a new phenomenon, but they are right that the problem is getting worse, also that the re-sale prices of many of these properties and the extortionate rents charged put them way out of reach of the people on a modest wage who were originally supposed to occupy them.
The landlords use crooked illegal means to buy the properties at discount. They lend money to the present occupier who can legally buy it as a discount, making a contract to buy it from that occupant when the five-year term expires. 
Ex-council flats in central London are rented out for £2,000 per month.
Meanwhile English families are desperate for a home. In most areas the waiting list for a council house is five years. In Oxford many council tenants are being kicked out of their homes because their parents, the original occupants, were there before them and the council tells them they cannot stay on. A single mother here in Oxford was told that she had to move to the far West of England or the North to get a council flat.

The sale of council housing under Mrs Thatcher was one of the most controversial Tory policies and if its long-term aim was supposed to be to enable more ordinary citizens on an average wage to be able to own their own homes, it has not succeeded. Its short-term aims were to get more money into the coffers of the local councils, enabling them to repair, and re-furbish the properties that remained, which were often very badly delapidated or worn out twenty years after they had been built. That helped to keep council tax down and it benefitted the first lot of purchasers who were awarded sizeable discounts. Owner-occupiers maintain their properties, putting time and money in, and the fact is that many tenants don't bother.

But the long-term results have been bad enough for me to feel that the policy was wrong and some major intervention is now needed from the government to alleviate the situation. Apart from anything else, local authorities now pay out a fortune in housing benefit for people who can't afford the private rental sector and cannot get council housing either. So council tax goes up.

What we have now is a rental market that is vastly inflated and the Dispatches programme also mentioned that many of the large-scale property magnates are foreign, so the money is going out of this country.

I am not against private rentals and I am very aware that private landlords often suffer severely from selfish, irresponsible, non-paying tenants or those who are absolutely filthy and fill the place with rats. It is only the ermergence of property magnates who own multiple ex-council properties and run them as a large-scale business, making millions, that concerns me.
I would suggest a policy that ex-council properties must be owner-occupied, or sold back to the council at the original price. The law could also limit the number of ex-council properties that any one person could own. If you couldn't own more than one and couldn't rent them out, it would stop a lot of this racketeering. I would also suggest putting a hold on the upcoming legislation to make Housing Associations sell their rental properties.

http://www.radiotimes.com/episode/d2gyhz/dispatches--council-house-millionaires-channel-4-dispatches

Friday, 4 March 2016

Trolls Could Get Five Years

I don't often call for more people to be crammed into our overcrowded prisons, but I welcome the news today that internet trolls can get toughter sentences, up to five years behind bars. They set out to bully other people and often do it with impunity. Anyone who saw how hundreds of trolls mobbed Mrs Anna Erickson-Hull towards the end of last year should realise that this is a serious problem. They swamped her with aggressive messages telling her to die, jump off a cliff etc and they also attacked her children.
Some were anonymous, but most are not , and my experience after years of being a victim is that the police generally do nothing at all about it.



Trolls send death threats, rape-threats, and vile verbal abuse, full of nasty, violent ideas from their twisted minds. 
The police wait for someone to commit suicide before they will act.

Now the Crown Prosecution Service announces "Online abuse is cowardly and can be deeply upsetting to the victim" -  yes we had just about managed to work that out. It also says that there should be longer sentences for the sort of trolls who make a fake ID using somebody else's name, picture and other details with fake information. I myself have been the victim of that sort of attack, perpetrated by the despicable Laurence Durnan, editor of Political Crapbook. He created a complete fake blog using my name and picture, and the police refused to act.  On Facebook there are countless fake ID pages set up to falsify and demean real people  - including Mrs Anna Erickson-Hull. Facebook refuses to remove them and says it is not "against their policy". 

Cyber_stalker_article-small_17661

   The case in the papers today of Sean Duffy says that he harassed a victim online, using the identity of her dead child. This case is not unique, There is an appalling lesbian harridan on Twitter who calls herself @NicoleBonnett1 who does the same thing. She also took the ID of the dead daughter  of one of her victims and used it to taunt, abuse and torment her online. She stole the picture, and put that on the fake ID. And the victim is a retired, disabled woman. 
There is an article on Barbwire about how @NicoleBonnet1 stalked one of her victims on multiple websites for five years. She maliciously sent these lies to many of the victim's family and neighbours, including the priest of a church where she thought the victim attended. She got hold of her private medical details somehow and ridiculed her for having epilepsy. She invented so many poisonous lies about the victim it is beyond belief (claimng that she was bankrupt, a business cheat, a social security fraud, had had an abortion, had been sued by her own family etc etc etc) yet the police so far have not acted against the cowardly, anonymous bully.

I know of endless examples on Twitter. Some trolls don't realise they are trolls, but think that they are noble campaigners. There is pathological abuse sent by trannies to people they call "terfs" i.e. sane women who don't accept trannie nonsense, They are all consigned to shredding machinery in the imaginations of the disturbed trannies, Oxford student Samuel M. Horsley sends people the rather trite, abusive clichés of the LGBT movement. If you look at his own Twitter page, (where he is pictures proudly in his BA degree gown flanked by his Mummy and Daddy) you find that he uses it to call normal people "disturbing". According to him, a field of innocent blokes playing football is abnormal and repellent. I have often read that it is a symptom of mental illness to find normal people, doing normal things, "disturbing", and I would anticipate some problems for anybody who employed young Samuel Horsley in any capacity to work alongside other people. Trouble ahead.
It's quite amusing to see that Peter Tatchell, of all people, has now started to whinge about trolling by LGBT fanatics. He was targetted by the trannies simply for signing a petition in favour of Free Speech. Then he was surprised when the no-platform brigade bombarded him with vicious, pathological hate-mail. He called it "vitriolic" and accused them of "McCarthyite" tactics. But the whole LGBT looney brigade have been doing it for twenty years and he never complained until it happened to P. Tatchell Esq. He even complains it caused him to fall over and injure himself. Dearie, dearie me.
Hoist with your own petard, Peter?



http://barbwire.com/2014/06/16/homosexual-stalking-jeanette-runyon-part-1/
http://barbwire.com/2014/06/17/homosexual-stalking-jeanette-runyon-part-2/
http://barbwire.com/2014/06/18/homosexual-stalking-jeanette-runyon-part-3/



Wednesday, 2 March 2016

A Medal So Late is an Insult

So the French government has finally got round to awarding medals to some of the British Army veterans who took part in the liberation of France in 1944. Oxford City Council held  a ceremony at the Town Hall this afternoon for the eight local nonogenarians who have survived the seventy-two years since the D-Day landings.



What took the French so long?

Only about 1% of the men who took part are still alive. Most of them are long dead, and never got any recognition at all for their undoubted heroism. They left their homes behind them for six years, and risked their lives in a foreign country most of them had never visited before. When they got home, (and not all of them did) they got tiny, derisory war pensions and struggled as best they could to work despite their injuries, disabilities, burst ear-drums, and invisible, psychological damage. The heads of their squadrons and regiments sent wreaths to their funerals ...paid for with money out of their own pockets.
Now suddenly the French start to feel grateful, a few months before the EU referendum.  They hand out medals, to be worn by frail great-great-grandfathers in wheelchairs.

Am I the only person who smells Brussels somewhere in the background here?

https://www.oxford.gov.uk/news/article/156/d-day_veterans_from_oxfordshire_to_be_presented_with_the_chevalier_legion_d_honneur_medal_ceremony
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-oxfordshire-35706147


D-Day veterans from Oxfordshire will be presented with the “Chevalier Legion D’ Honneur Medal” at a ceremony to be held 2pm on Tuesday 1 March 2016, Oxford Town Hall.


After the medal ceremony the Lord Mayor of Oxford, Councillor Rae Humberstone will host a tea party for the veterans and their families and guests.

The French government has been awarding the Légion d’honneur to D-Day veterans from many different countries for several years, as a way of honouring and thanking those who fought and risked their lives to secure France’s liberation during the Second World War.

The veterans from Oxfordshire and their families will be joined amongst others, by the Lord Mayor of Oxford, Councillor Rae Humberstone, Chairman of Oxfordshire County Council John Sanders and from the Lord Lieutenants office, Marie-Jane Barnett DL

The Lord Mayor of Oxford, Councillor Rae Humberstone said

“It is a privilege to host this very historic occasion, as we honour these very special people. We celebrate the courage shown by them and their comrades, in those first crucial hours of 6 June 1944, in the days immediately following the Normandy landings and in the ensuing months, I look forward to welcoming them, their families and guests to the Town Hall.”

The medals will be presented to the veterans by the Honorary Consul for France, Mr Robert F Mille, as a way of thanking them for their bravery and courage for the part they played in the D-Day landings in June 1944.

The Order of Légion D’ Honneur is the highest decoration in France and is ranked: Grand Cross to the Legion of Honour, Commander to the Legion of Honour, Officer to the Legion of Honour and Knight to the Legion of Honour (Chevalier).


Published: Friday, 26th February 2016

Another speed-bump accident

A friend of mine  has just been injured in an accident caused by a speed-bump in Wheatley.



He was driving well under the speed-limit when he went over one of these bumps at a point in the road where there is also a sharp bend. His car hit a wall and it was a complete write-off.  He is lucky not to have been worse injured, and it is fortunate that no other vehicle was involved.
I am totally fed up of the misery caused by these lethal speed-bumps and I fully support the campaign of the Assocation of British Car Drivers to discourage or stop their use.
There is a long list on their website of accidents caused by speed-bumps.

http://www.speedlimit.org.uk/hump.html