Happy Christmas. I salute, you, the bloggers

Don’t worry. I wrote this a few days ago, and do have better things to do today.

I want to wish you and yours a very happy Christmas. I also want to say a big thank you to the regulars who contribute. This blog does provide a forum for you to make your points and help win important national arguments. It is much richer for the diverse views and characters that populate it.

I look forward to many of your remarks. I find Dennis Cooper’s forensic reading of the EU documents most helpful in a public debate where too many opinion formers fail to read the source documents. Javelin often gives us good insights into financial markets. Peter Van Leeuwen bravely tries to explain the workings of the EU in a more favourable light to challenge many of us. Bazman makes us all think with his down to earth voice for modern welfarism. Uanime5 winds many of us up with a strange mixture of intelligence, odd ball comments and errant “facts”. Conrad Jones weighs in with an alternative view.

So often Alan Wheatley, Lola, Zorro, Sue, a different simon, Barbara Stevens, Electro-Kevin, APL, Mike Stallard, Bob, Brian Tomkinson, Gary, Rebecca Hanson and Alan Jutson come in with good insights and contributions. Then we have the distinctive voices of Lifelogic, Singleacts, Disaffected, English pensioner, Lojolondon,Tedgo, Oldtimer, Outsider, libertarian, Qietzaple, backofanenvelope and Figurewizard, who combine to provide wry and sceptical commentary on how we are governed.

It all makes for a lively forum, and an eye catching site that is read widely by opinion formers.
A Happy Christmas to one and all.

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38 Comments

  1. Paul Danon
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    And thank you, John, for your blog. It’s invariably well-researched and stimulating, the spelling richly diverse. We don’t pay our MPs to be shy about what they think. Happy Christmas.

  2. Sue
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    It is a refreshing change to see one of our politicians giving us a chance to comment and then the courtesy of a reply.

    Thank you for that Mr Redwood.

    I wish you and your family a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous “EU-independent” 2012 for us all.

  3. Tedgo
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    Wishing John and his fellow contributors a very merry Christmas.

  4. Matt
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    Merry Christmas

    Thanks for the blog

  5. electro-kevin
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Thanks John,

    It was almost a pleasure !

    Now I really must get on making the fragrant Mrs E-K that cuppa tea I promised her or I will be in trouble.

    Kevin

  6. Bernard Otway
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    Thank you John,even though I sometimes get angry with [Ed.] especially when I see Hefer,Hitchens,Mckinstry,Phillips,Oborne etc etc write exactly what I do.I would just remind you that Tough and Pithy language is actually very called for in present circumstances AND
    that it is very useful,many people HAVE to be reminded of our need for tough action and that
    the TRUTH hurts nobody.
    Merry Christmas
    PS Uanime5 drives me up the wall as well as Bazman,my solution would be to maroon them on an island where they would have to be Capitalists to survive.

    • electro-kevin
      Posted December 26, 2011 at 12:18 am | Permalink

      Uanime5 and Bazman are likeable enough and get some wins on this blog. I’m glad they’re here.

      What do you expect them to do as Capitalists on a desert island ? Run a whelk stall ???

  7. lifelogic
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    “Distinctive” voices! – I never really understand why I count as “distinctive” perhaps just to the usual BBC line.

    Surely mine should be the central mainstream view. After all, I just try my best to apply logic, without religion, irrational envy, jealousy and emotion combined with a little understanding of science, maths, probability, compound interest, engineering, numbers and the, very many, human weaknesses.

    But thankfully without the politicians huge inconvenience and torture of needing to be, all thinks to all men (and woman just to keep Dimbleby and the BBC happy this Christmas).

    Surely everyone do they not?

    • Bazman
      Posted December 26, 2011 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

      Maybe you should consider cause and effect, for every action their is a reaction and so on. The only thing I hate more than conservatives is liberals. Conservatives don’t like sex as it leads to dancing. To recycle old jokes.

  8. libertarian
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    Many thanks to you John for a truly excellent and informed blog.

    A Merry Christmas to you your family and all the regular inhabitants of the UK’s best political blog

  9. Subrosa
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    A Merry Christmas to you and yours. Although I seldom comment I do observe. 😉

  10. Single Acts
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    For my part, I am encouraged to know there are independent minds in Westminster and thanks for the blog, it’s pretty much daily required reading.

  11. zorro
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Seasonally adjusted greetings to all other participants on your topical and incisive blog. This is an excellent example of how with the internet people can share views effectively on topics where they have some interest or knowledge.

    Far, far more difficult only a few years ago….Technological advances, whilst sometimes disturbing, can bring great opportunities for advancement and real democratic involvement even in the UK.

    Zorro

    can also bring hope and democratic

  12. Daniel McKean
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Happy Christmas! Love the blog

    Daniel

  13. Richard Hobbs
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    My wife and I, impoverished British pensioners living in Canada, have only contributed to your blog a couple of times but read it daily. Many thanks for hosting this site and for all your insights. We worry about the ‘old’ country and are so glad you are there.

    Thanks again and a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you.

    • Barbara Stevens
      Posted December 25, 2011 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      Your not alone being impoverished, we are English pensioners and we are the same. However, having lived long enough to warn the younger bloggers of the dire consequences of over spending, indulging, and all the misery it brings. Debt is racking the whole world at the moment, it as been a thing I’ve long hated. We in the UK still are united in one thing, we will remain the United Kingdom, and together we’ll ride the storm. Its the EU and all it’s wrongs we don’t want, it’s nothing less than a millstone round our necks. I just hope businesses in Canada pursue to help the old country via trade to help us fight back. Good luck in 2012.

      • Richard Hobbs
        Posted December 26, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

        Thank you Barbara. If UK can pick up then perhaps we might get more Can $’s for our £’s. As we are paid in £’s that would at least make a difference to us and the thousands like us. Also, if the UK government would stop the freeze on UK State pensions paid to those like us in many Commonwealth countries that would be a great help. There are very many really old people who have paid for their pensions only to find them become worthless. But. I guess, that is too much to ask for…………
        All the bestfor 2012.

  14. Barbara Stevens
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    I’m a recent contributer to your blog, and I’ve found it imformative and entertaining. I wish you and yours a very happy Christmas and healthy New Year. Yes, you are correct, the blog gives an insight to how people are thinking, if they are angry, happy or discontent, but most of all the information you yourself impart is important so we can at least know where we are going in government, as your part of it. Its up to us if we tell others. I look forward to the New Year and more of it. Good luck to you on this blog and good health for 2012.

  15. Badgerbill
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

    A Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year to you and yours for an educational blog that should be read more widely to educate the wider public!

  16. lojolondon
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

    Dear John, thanks once again for your excellent blog, which gives me the very real hope I can one day move from UKIP to being a proper Tory again!

  17. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

    A belated Merry Christmas to all of you!

  18. Bean Counter
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to you Mr Redwood for the effort and time you put into this blog which I have been following for nearly 3 years. The comments are also worth reading which is more than can be said for many other blogs. It’s a good place to come to in these challenging times.

  19. Iain Gill
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 12:52 am | Permalink

    thanks to you and have a great time!

  20. Woodsman
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 1:05 am | Permalink

    Thank you John and all those that you mention for giving me an interesting read daily.Merry Xmas to you all.

  21. James Reade
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 5:16 am | Permalink

    Happy Christmas indeed.

    On vacation since Dec 14 so you’ve been spared my inputs for a while.

    Definitely enjoy engaging with those who do respond in a civil manner on here to my seemingly contrarian thoughts over the past few months…

    Looking forward to sparring in 2012…

    • Rebecca Hanson
      Posted December 26, 2011 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

      Ah yes – the recession is on. No Waitrosing in 2012.

  22. alan jutson
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Many thanks to you John, for providng an interesting and insightful daily forum, to which we can all contribute, sometimes with sensible comment, sometimes just to simply let off steam, and for your own responses and thoughts when questions are asked.

    I cannot help but notice that the comments and responses are getting larger, (over 100 now being commonplace) If this means the word is spreading, then that can only be for the good.

    Can only hope that you continue to find the time to keep it going in the future.

    All the best for 2012, I hope you get what you wish for, then most of us will be happy too !

    Reply: Yes, there is a bigger participating following. More now understand this is not an MP or party website, but a forum for policy debate and analysis.

    • Roehamster
      Posted December 27, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

      Indeed. As a member of a generation exposed to the vilest calumnies against the political Right, exposure to the reality rather than the myth has been, by turns; humbling, revelatory, enlightening.

      My best wishes to all that post here, or are merely visiting.

  23. peter
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Merry XMAS – thanks JR for speaking how you see things and not just the party line. We need these platforms with someone who has access to government who will fight in the UKs interest.

    I wish all MPs had your conviction and more freedom to act in the interests of their constituents concerns on important matters rather than getting railroaded into supporting governement actions few people want.

  24. Rebecca Hanson
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    Christmas day involved an epic game of ‘Monopoly Revolution’ for three generations of Hansons.

    For those who haven’t seen it, £1 of old money (cash) is replaced with £10,000 of virtual money in the new game. A central bank oversees transactions with players slotting in their credit cards at appropriate times and generates chances when it feels like it. Chance squares have been replaced with extra utilities and London’s cycle, pedestrian and other zones.

    What you notice straight away is that you rarely have any idea how much money you’ve got. In the old days you could pretty much instantly count the pink notes and look at the orange ones. Now you have to visit the bank to have a clue. It’s much harder to plan your money.

    Maths teacher hat on:
    Must is lost for educational purposes for children – the fundamental variety of structures of maths practiced so extensively in sorting out money and change have gone and the circular board conceals the number bonds to 10 and 5 which were so easy to use as part of moves in the old square game.

    You get large numbers and you get lots of decimals – but it was noticeable that the children lost interest much more rapidly and it was the adults who were hooked for the whole 5 hours.

    Summary – a much play – suitable for an adult friends night in, but traditional monopoly is much better and more fun for the under 12s.

    • Rebecca Hanson
      Posted December 26, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

      ‘much is lost’ not ‘much is lost’.

      Tut, tut Rebecca, who also recommends Harry Potter Cluedo, Olympic Top Trumps Tournament and of course, Pictonary and good game of knock-out whist……

  25. Barry Machin
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    Thank you for an excellent Website. Would love to hear some comment from you on Daniel Hannan and his blog. Merry Christmas and a Happy and successful New Year to you and your followers.

  26. Alan Wheatley
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Thank you, John, for your Christmas wishes.

    I must say as a long term follower of this blog, the two things that have kept me interested have been the excellent “leading articles” and the contributions from those posting replies. So thank you one and all.

    I think it can truthfully be said that we live in intereting times, and I wish everyone a happy and interesting New Year.

  27. Bazman
    Posted December 26, 2011 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    Happy Christmas John and t0 the contributors and readers of this site. 2012 is going to happen with or without you, so get some!

  28. Martin Ryder
    Posted December 27, 2011 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    Thank you also for speaking up so well in the Commons. You always make sense and, unlike many of your colleagues, especially those on the opposition benches, actually understand what is going on and can speak to the subject. The number of MPs who write down their intervention before entering the Chamber and then read it out word for word, even though the PM has already explained the situation a number of times and answered their question or complaint, is far too large for the Mother of Parliaments. How can we get better MPs?

    Happy New Year to everyone.

  29. Kenneth
    Posted December 27, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    My hope for the new year is that a group of those who wish to change our relationship with the eu quango and bring us nearer to full democracy will emerge across both Houses of Parliament. That means a broad church, including those on the Left! I believe this will achieve potency with the media.

    I applaud your commentaries which are evidence-based and which are without hype.

  30. Realist
    Posted December 28, 2011 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    A Happy New Year John from the Realist and City Slicker.

  31. Annie Hambidge
    Posted January 18, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    Have enjoyed your blog for 2 years or more so admit I’m addicted! After reading all these comments its reassuring to know there are so many more ‘passionately concerned others’ out there and that I’m not completely mad!
    The art of conversation /discussion is under threat as so many become disengaged or inhibited in fear of the power of ‘ political correctness’. Exchange of views is not only liberating and informative, it enables more rationality as it can help modify an extreme angle one might have . We need a badge !! Thank you John, you are a tremendous asset to the Conservative Party I DO hope DC and George O. listen to you more than they listen to Lib-Dems. especially St. Vince. ..twick-vic(tim).

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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