Billionaire influence?

Some people want me to publish their personal campaigns against a few named billionaires. I tell them repeatedly I will not do so. It is  not the purpose or nature of this site.

Some claim these billionaires lobby governments, setting up lobbying institutes to  seek attention for policies they favour. Indeed , some of them do just that. So do Trade Unions ,raising millions from their members, large charities, spending a fortune on  adverts and lobbying, opposition political parties, every large company that has a government affairs department and many others. All of these people and institutions use money they have earned or raised to sharpen their message and to try to influence Ministers who make decisions and to influence the  officials who help them. Sometimes they want governments to do things that are self serving for them and possible damaging to the rest of us. Ministers need to stay alert and work out who to trust.

One of the  purposes of this site is to examine the quality of the decisions governments and public institutions  make and the consequences of them. As an MP I am also seeking to   influence government on  behalf of my constituents and in line with my and my party’s view of how to proceed in the national interest. Where external lobbies are putting forward damaging or ill judged proposals then I am always willing to give a voice to the counter arguments to their theories and propositions.

I am not willing to publish personal attacks on people who believe they are working for the wider good just because one or you – or I myself – disagree with their advice. I do  not have the capacity to research the truthfulness of claims made about them. Please find somewhere else in the media who do want to run with conspiracy theories if you believe you have a case. Governments do not have to follow these people – sometimes they choose to do so, presumably when  they think they are right.

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215 Comments

  1. Lifelogic
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:37 am | Permalink

    One protection against this would be to prevent MPs (MEPs) and Lords taking fees for so called “consultancy” (just declaring their interests is not sufficient it still warps the system). One only has to look at many of the damaging laws passed to see that they are only in the interests of essentially corrupt vested interests. We often get the same think in local government too. The planning system is particulary rife.

    Almost the whole of the “renewables” industry only exists thank what is essentially corruption pumping tax payers money into private pockets. Whose idea was the expensive and time consuming “making tax digital” lunacy. Accounting software companies perhaps?

    All sorts of hugely damaging things pushed by the legal profession and health and safely industries (in the interest of few but the legal profession and the health and safely industry.

    It all damaged productivity and the ability of the country to compete.

    Reply An MP cannot take a fee from a business to put their case to Parliament

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:10 am | Permalink

      To reply:- Well it is prohibited by the rules – but in practice they would doubtless claim the “consultancy” fees and the parliamently activities and “lobbying” is remotely connected mere coincidence.

      They may even believe this themselves. We should scrap the climate change act and the climate committee now for a start.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

        sorry is “not” remotely connected …

    • DaveK
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:01 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply. Is it also against the rules for a family member or their company to benefit from someone putting a case to Parliament?

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

      Making Tax Digital is unnecessary as you say @LL but the solution costs me £20 per year and reduces the regularity of audits which constitutes a large time saving.

      RTI too has actually made life easier now the cost has been absorbed.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

        What is your £20 PA solution?

        • Narrow Shoulders
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

          TaxCalc, my solution is automatic via an interface using mapping but you can create Taxcalc and a manual spreadsheet and use the same mapping to file online

          • Lifelogic
            Posted May 23, 2020 at 3:21 am | Permalink

            Thanks will look into this.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:15 am | Permalink

      Yes it is all very well for people to “use money they have earned” but taxpayers as electors pay for government to operate and elect it. It is not for people to use their own money to lobby to usurp those taxpayers from what a majority want.

      There is so much happening in this country which is directly contrary to the obvious and stated wishes of the majority of taxpayers who pay for the elected government.

      That is why conspiracy theories abound. e.g.
      -immigration – why are we accompanying craft into the country?
      -NHS- why is it so disorganised?
      -Coronavirus-why are figures being manipulated and changed?
      -green lobby- why does this act contrary to popular demand?
      -EU-why are we still following their rules 4 years after voting out
      -property-why do we have help to buy schemes which benefit only housebuilders?

    • Andy
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      But MPs can accept gifts – sometimes significant ones – from companies. Those companies want something in return, even if there is no specific quid pro quo.

      A new Labour MP – whose name I forget – recently spoke about this in Parliament. About how she had been shocked to get these ‘gifts’.

      I know the are declared and I am not saying anyone has done anything wrong – but it just smells bad.

      I would like ALL gifts and all donations to all MPs banned. This includes hospitality.

      • Sea Warrior
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

        I agree with you – and 95% of the British electorate would too. The current system stinks. And donations to political parties should have an upper-limit so small that there can be no suggestion that it is buying influence, or an honour.

        • anon
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

          Political doantions allowed only if from individuals out of UK taxed income only.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:51 am | Permalink

        A senior Italian investigator, of organised crime in Italy with international links, recently described the UK as one of the most corrupt countries in the world.

        That says something, I think.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted May 23, 2020 at 4:17 am | Permalink

          Indeed, it says the Italian investigator does not know very much about the world. The UK certainly has plenty of corruption but is is far better than most countries.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted May 23, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

            He clearly knows more than you ever would.

    • a-tracy
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

      “Whose idea was the expensive and time consuming “making tax digital” lunacy.”

      I have an opposing view, I think that it is fast and efficient. Submissions now take minutes we haven’t had a balancing error in three years in both employment taxes or vat. Partly due to the fact that it is all digital. It was free to set up?

      Businesses should not have to pay to submit and do HMRC’s work for them it should continue to be free of charge. We’ve not had to change anything it was a minor imposition.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:25 am | Permalink

        We used an old sage system that we bought outright years ago it worked fine. Now I have to pay £24 per month for a new system for three companies. So £864 PA we have to pay out with no benefit for me or for the government. Plus we have to move over to it and it takes longer. Perhaps another £500 in extra wages and all this comes off profits and so less tax is paid too.

        If it suits you fine but why “force” everyones to do this? If the revenue demains you to use certain software they should supply it for free.

        Why a monthly free – it is like buying a calculator and then being told you are charged each month or for each sum you do on it. A rip off racket.

        And this is only one example of the many millions of ways government damages businesses’s ability to compete. May’s moronic gender pay gap reporting for example, the enveloped dwelling tax forms, restrictive and slow planning system with bat surveys etc, pointless expensive valuations needed for tax reasons or demanded by banks every five years (due to new OOT bank regulations) ……..

        • a-tracy
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:28 am | Permalink

          I don’t agree that any business should have to pay for software to collect taxes for the government. You should be able to claim that back for making their job easier. We;be just been told foreign workers can have their NHS fee free of charge, yet business gets charged to collect the governments vat and taxes!

          We use a free gateway that allows us to submit the information in excel it took 5 minutes to set up and works with our older existing system because we had legacy software as you did, we found the free gateway on the HMRC website as it was one they recommended.

      • Old person
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

        Sorry, I beg to disagree.

        I and my other half have a very small amount of rental income on top of small pensions, requiring us both to submit short form tax returns. Because, in one year, HMRC failed to send out a blank tax return for my wife, I was forced to submit the return online to meet the deadline.

        My paper tax return is 4 pages. My wife’s online tax return is 16 pages.

        This year, it is better, HMRC are no longer sending out paper tax returns to anyone (the Covid-19 ruse).
        Days elapsing to get your tax return access codes.
        The online security is pathetic – ring back to give a security code.
        There is no way my wife could do an online tax return – I fill it out for her.

        We have an internet connection at home, but note that this internet connection costs a lot more than any tax that is due. Neither of us has a mobile phone.

        At the moment, if you don’t have an internet connection, you cannot go to your public library in lock down.

        A pen and a postage stamp is better and more inclusive of everyone.

        • a-tracy
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:35 am | Permalink

          I’m sorry to read that OP my husband helps out our family he does their digital stuff for them everything from tax to driving licence and passport renewals, my Mum did muddle on using her old mobile phone with the helpline but she has got used to things like Facebook and Twitter.

          When the system all went digital there would have been a HUGE reduction in staff costs but a % of these must have been retained and should be able to help people that aren’t digitally able over the telephone.

    • Hope
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink

      JR, we have a current scandal happening in the English Channel under the cover of Chinese virus the your govt is complicit with. Your govt mass immigration to help big business with cheap labour is one thing to be complicit in illegal activity to secure its aims has sunk your goct to lower depths than anyone could believe possible.

      We read and see the video in Guido the French navy escorting migrant boats across the channel to British waters and passed to Border Force/coast guards! Patel must be sacked. That is not taking control of our borders, it is supporting and promoting illegal activity and encouraging people to risk their lives.

      Farage was threatened to have his boat confiscated if he filmed what was going on!

      If this is govt policy then the illegal human traffickers should be furloughed and paid to stay at home. It would cost the British taxpayer less!

      • miami.mode
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

        …but Hope, they’ve got an 80 seat majority and think they’re invincible.

        • Hope
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

          Figures just released 440,000 immigrants from outside the EU entered the UK in 2019! The Tory govt policy claimed to reduce to tens of thousands, blatant lies to make it appear it was out of its control by EU! The Tory govt is dishonest and has been dishonest with its main policies to get elected. What did Mayhab say about adult social care in 2017, nothing had changed! Tory govt broke three promises and she came out with this. The Tory Govt is responsible for about 20,000 care Home deaths that should help solve their broken promises.

          Central economic plank to get elected three times deliberately not achieved. Ten years of austerity, suffering highest taxation in fifty with dire public services shown by the budget in March it was for nothing!

          Cut backs in NHS made services with addition of mass immigration dire, police equally useless. Highest crime- knife and murder crime in forty years, Tory answer: cut police numbers by 20,000 and cut prison sentences and make/find legal excuses to find any reason to down grade murder to manslaughter so they are out in a couple of years!

          700+ let out of immigration deportation centres, 4,000 let out of prison! 18 million allowed to enter the country from virus hotspots. Illegal immigrants from France, a safe country so no asylum should be accepted, helped to enter the country by U.K. border Force and coast guard. The rest of the nation under house arrest under the false claim to prevent the spread of Chinese virus!

          Is the UK escort service of illegal immigrants from France allowed because Mayhab signed up to UN migration pact to make illegal immigrants legal? UN demanded countries provide them homes and health care three weeks ago. We are told to stay in to save NHS!

          • glen cullen
            Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

            Needs to get out of fire fighting mode and into strategic planning mode

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:29 am | Permalink

        If you do not sent them back you are saying come, come, come and come some more if you get in you can stay.

        Do not bother to apply legally just get to Calais and find a boat far quicker and cheaper. Entry for all regardless of merit.

        This is the message from this Government. Why not put a sign up on the white cliffs of dover to this effect. Might as well do.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      Police carry out ‘dawn raids’ on campers who stayed overnight in Cornwall despite lockdown restrictions.

      Would this be the same police who have give up almost completely on shoplifting, banking fraud, burglary and many other crimes? Doubtless in doing this they greatly increased the chance of an infection spreading and made themselves extremely popular with the public in the process.

      • Peter
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

        Dawn raids on holiday makers with camper vans.

        But no action taken against ‘travellers’ in caravans. There is currently a group parked up in Ham on the outskirts of Richmond Park.

        AnarchoTyranny.

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

        LIfelogic

        Indeed it seems like one rule for one group, and other for everyone else.

        It’s been the same for years, just compare prosecutions with those in the traveller communities who often have no fixed address.

        If you are legal and they know where you live, you can expect the full force of the law upon you for a mistake.

        If your not known it’s too much hassle for them.

        Exactly the same treatment with HMRC. or any other government department.

        The Police need to be rather more consistent and balanced in their actions.

    • Peter
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      It is not only billionaires. There also corporations and whole countries actively lobbying to get what they want from parliament. Many of the billionaires pay little or no tax, as their affairs are managed off shore. Yet – shamefully – they are not slow looking for government assistance when things are not going so well.

      It is all a question of which politicians are biddable. The expenses scandal shows that not all MPs are selflessly working for the benefit of the country without concerns for their own well being.

      We know MPs get gifts and jollies abroad. We know that politicians and senior civil servants often leave to go straight into enterprises where they have either had past dealings or where they have inside knowledge. The board that is supposed to scrutinise such moves is little more than an ineffective figleaf – like most of the regulators in this country.

      Don’t expect to see any of this in the mainstream media. Newspaper proprietors often have their own affairs managed offshore.

      So it is no surprise the general public are now very cynical – even if you do not wish this site to mention any names.

  2. DOMINIC
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:53 am | Permalink

    It’s quite simple. Your party has betrayed the very nature of what this country is. Forget the influence of billionaires. I’m more concerned with the influence of activist groups like SW and HNH who despise what your party is and yet have had enormous influence in pushing their agenda and forcing your party to accept their demands.

    Moreover, the influence of public sector trades unions is growing. The influence of billionaires on govt policy is minimal. It is the influence of the activist/union web in dictating policy that is of far more importance in forcing agenda to suit their needs. A weak willed govt packed with weak willed Ministers is cannon fodder for London-centric Anti-Tory activists

    I understand the difficult position many backbench Tory MPs are in on issues such as gender, race and sexuality but since 2010 your party in government has ripped up and binned the very fabric of what this nation. It is the most appalling attack on the UK and Tory MPs know that and yet remain silent

    Only Phil Davies has tried to confront progressive authoritarianism and he’s been crushed. And therefore we have a Tory party doing the work of the Labour party, no doubt working with them, passing laws they don’t believe in but passing laws to appease an aggressive political enemy.

    When will your party understand that you can NEVER, EVER please the left?

    • SM
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:17 am | Permalink

      Do you send your concerns to those who actively run the Party, Dominic?

      Our host hardly needs lessons in how to run a State in a way attractive to many of us, but much to our regret, he is not in the Cabinet, therefore your outbursts on these pages come across as pointless rants.

    • jerry
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:41 am | Permalink

      @Dominic; “When will your party understand that you can NEVER, EVER please the left?”

      Judging from your daily rants the hard right can never ever be pleased either, the electorate might or might not have given the right wing an inch yet they now (just like Militant in the 1970s) the hard right want to take a yard, if not mile!

      I’ve said this before, the hard left and hard right are simply the same but opposite swing of the nations pendulum, left unbalanced either (or both) will destroy the sweetly running ‘clock’ – UK Plc…

    • Sharon Jagger
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

      The trouble with these woke, socialist agendas, they have the loudest voices and give the impression they speak for the majority…and I don’t believe they do! And of course they get so insulted and aggrieved, it’s probably easier to give in to them.

      Mind you, it was Teresa May who sneaked through gay marriage. Regardless of one’s beliefs, that was quite a fundamental change to our society- where was the discussion?

      • margaret howard
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

        Sharon

        Gay marriage ‘quite a fundamental change to our society’?

        It only involves a tiny minority of society and has quite frankly nothing to do with the rest of us (except perhaps religious nosey parkers).

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:19 am | Permalink

      Please summarise “the very nature of this country”.

      That is, kindly cite a clearly definable “British value”, which is different from that of any other modern, secular, democratic country.

      Thank you.

      • a-tracy
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

        Queuing and patiently waiting your turn.
        Fair Play.
        Keeping calm with a cup of tea.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

          And in what way has membership of the European Union prevented any of those things?

          And which modern democratic country does not have a code of manners, and the rule of law?

          And that is the best that you can do.

          • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

            We were deprived of our core values of Democracy (you have to be able to sack your lawmakers, not simply vote) and Capitalism. We became citizens of a foreign country without our authority for same, and our Queen became a Suzereign and a common citizen of the EU like all the commoners. We were deprived of our Rule of Law, Government by Consent and our Treasure. Enough? I can go on….

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:53 am | Permalink

            Absolute nonsense, Lynn.

            The proof is, stupidly, that the UK has left the European Union.

          • margaret howard
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

            Lynn Atkinson

            “We were deprived of our core values of Democracy (you have to be able to sack your lawmakers, not simply vote)…”

            We do NOT live in a democracy but a monarchy whose head we CANNOT vote for. Democracy is rule by the people whereas the synonyms for a monarchy are as follows:

            government with a monarch at the head.
            synonyms:

            kingship · sovereignty · autocracy · monocracy · absolutism · absolute power · despotism · royalism · monarchism
            ==

            And the rest of our system can best be described as the ESTABLISHMENT that allow us to vote every few years in a virtual 2-party state.

          • a-tracy
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

            Queuing and waiting your turn to come to the UK if you require immigration instead we have an EU that facilitates the movement of queue jumpers. We are told we have to put people through the asylum system when they arrive yet France does not seem to have to abide by that. Malta and Italy seems to just threaten people until they leave their waters if the Guardian is to be believed.

            Fair Play. The EU charge us taxes on activities we do not tax. So those many millions of us that don’t take drugs or use prostitutes end up paying a made-up tax for those suspected revenues because we didn’t apply a tax other nations in the EU do. I thought you said we had our own tax raising powers? I’m sure this is applied evenly throughout the EU!

            Keeping calm with a cup of tea – is a much required daily activity right now with all the reports of what we’re still not allowed to do or decide for ourselves.

      • Caterpillar
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

        Martin in Cardiff,

        Indeed, as you imply, several countries as well as the UK have had their very natures erased, and as typified by the U.K. people have become fearful of stating national values.

        I find it difficult to express both concisely and precisely – so this is a misuse of terms – but there is a tension between the way cultural relativist arguments can be accepted within a country’s borders but not between countries.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

          What were those “very natures” then?

          Come on?

          • Caterpillar
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

            What? I don’t think this should be trivialised.

            There is a huge literature on changes to values both books and papers, and of course cultural similarity research using k-mean and hierarchical cluster analysis (I know there is some methodological criticism). The shift at the individual is a search for belonging, self-realization etc. This has seen a rise in life-style issues, supra-national organisations (though some now being questioned) and tribalism. If you do a google ngram (I know the corpus is criticised) to compare ‘British values’, ‘British identity’, ‘English identity’ then you will appreciate the rise of interest in this.

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        Martin

        A British value “…which is different from that of any other modern, secular, democratic country.”

        Dominic is saying that whatever the Tories are doing doesn’t accord with those values either.

        At a time that Britons are sacrificing their jobs and basic pleasures to accord with lock-down measures the Tory government is abetting people traffickers to enable queue jumpers.

        Everyone knows it’s going on now. I’d have more respect if the Government had given a reasoned explanation instead of trying to hide it from us.

        • Anonymous
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

          It would be good if Sir John could address the English Channel crisis in a post soon.

          Why is it not on BBC news ?

          Why is China threatening Australia not on BBC news ?

          Do they think we live in a news vacuum ?

          • Alan Jutson
            Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

            Nothing in the news about trade tariffs either, they have been on and on and on about uncertainty for years, yet when its laid out for them, they ignore it.

            The public getting rather fed up with the media constantly trying to find fault with everything.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:57 am | Permalink

          You simply cannot define a “British value”, to which you can admit, which is different from any enlightened country.

          I suspect that what you really mean are vile attitudes to which you cannot admit, except with overwhelming safety in numbers.

          Such as a sense of superiority, stemming from the violent imperial oppression of other peoples, who historically did not possess firearms.

          • Edward2
            Posted May 23, 2020 at 6:14 am | Permalink

            You sound more like urban revolutionary Dave Spart every day Martin.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      When will you understand that the red-faced, port-swilling, flog-em, hang-em, stick-em-up-chimneys’ Tory MP is (almost) a thing of the past. I would be curious (and probably horrified) to know what sort of a country you’d like to live in.

    • Fred H
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:04 am | Permalink

      I have to agree. Billionaires are not the problem, yes they can influence or decide that big business moves from the UK. It is the small but growing numbers of radical organisations that seek to change the hearts and minds of the people, and more specifically those that work and vote. The older and wiser population have learnt from a lifetime of experience what works and what doesn’t.

      • Nigl
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

        Agreed. Look at the charities using their government funding to lobby against …………. the government!

        • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

          +1 and the Trustees of Charities now have insurance so they cannot be sued for their own wealth – see Sunetra Atkinson and Kids Company. So they have nothing to lose and are therefore act irresponsibly.

        • glen cullen
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

          correct 9 out of 10 charities don’t walk talk or business like a charity

    • Maj
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

      What are SW and HNH? It would be helpful to the understanding of some of us if all of you who post used the full title of organisations etc the first time you use them. I’ve now worked out that the frequently-used MSM actually means Main Stream Media – I think!?

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:01 am | Permalink

      I think todays Tories are the left. If they were real right wing Thatcherites we wouldn’t have the lunacy of the CCA or carbon neutral by 2050 whatever that means.
      Telling children they can identify as they wish and letting boys in girls toilets are shameful developments which are an embarrassment to our country.
      The continuation of secret courts shielding both the perpetrators and their employees is a travesty which should never happen in a democratic state.
      Todays politicians have a lot to be ashamed about.

    • Hope
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      David Davis MP tried to highlight the infringement of liberty and norms of check and balances when May introduced the Snooper charter to look at and monitor everyone’s computer without warrant, giving powers to local authority, food agency etc. Under the guise of fighting terrorism. Bearing in mind at the time she could not or would not deport alleged terrorists to other countries!

      Will this be got rid of when all other liberties restored or all freedoms left to hang in case of a,second outbreak? Tory party is institutionally dishonest proven by how it successively breaks it word and promises. It will say anything to get in power.

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink

      I agree, and we shouldn’t be trying to.

    • forthurst
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:10 am | Permalink

      Where do you imagine NGOs hostile to the English people and in favour of replacing them with unassimilable aliens get their money; here’s the rule: follow the money. Why do you think the Tory party has been so tolerant of the criminal conspiracy to replace the English and has tended to promote leaders who support this agenda: yes, follow he money.

      Your hero Davies does not strike me as being particularly bright; for one thing, if he was serious about the need for change, he would support electoral reform because the Tory party is no more reformable than the BBC; it went off the rails 80 years ago and is a smouldering wreck beyond salvage.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

      Dominic,

      I agree with your para 2, though I suspect we would have different approaches to tackling this.I

      Para 4 needs a change of.political.system which obviously the parties that benefit from the current one won’t bring about (unless indirectly by collapsing the economy and society).

  3. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:01 am | Permalink

    John . . Any comment on the articles yesterday elsewhere that Nigel Farage saw rubber dinghies from Calais, full of illegals, escorted from Calais to a meeting point in the Channel where they were “handed over” to our Border force to ferry them here. So much for PP going to stop it. No wonder those in the photo were all smiling. Clean clothes ( so much for living rough) and clearly not starving. Why doesn’t the govt just admit that they want this country/nation destroyed and are going to ensure it happens. There can be no other outcome from what is being done, but denied.

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

      Completely agree with your last two sentences.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

      agree

    • margaret howard
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

      bigneal

      ” Nigel Farage saw rubber dinghies from Calais, full of illegals, escorted from Calais to a meeting point in the Channel where they were “handed over” to our Border force to ferry them here”

      So what was Farage doing there at that particular time and how did he know they were ‘full of illegals’?

      • glen cullen
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        I think you will find its a daily event

      • zorro
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        So were they full of legal immigrants then Margaret. Perhaps it was a fishing trip without rods or nets? Get a grip!

        zorro

      • graham1946
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

        Come on Margaret, even you cannot think it was a set up. He was there because it was reported by fisherman what was going on and he was there then because it was reported that it is when they come over. Border Force actually confirmed that half a dozen of them were landed between 4 am and mid morning, but Farage says that is an understatement. How did he know they were illegals? Do anyone else venture across the Channel with 29 people in a small rubber boat, inches from the water over topping? You really will have to think before posting if you want to be taken seriously.

  4. jerry
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:15 am | Permalink

    Indeed, those who wish to play the ball (rebuff published policy, theory, modelling etc.) should be allowed to do so, those wish to attack, sorry, play the man should be shown the read card, even more so when most of the bile appears to be about anything other than the named persons published/professional work…

  5. Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:25 am | Permalink

    That a fair enough stance to take… But somebody needs to take a close look at what is going on and how the money flows…. to influence decisions

    When a billionaire can get support for her or his interests because he/she is spreading his money around, so that government is sympathetic to start with because money has been flowing into certain groups.

    MSM are never likely to take on those pushing their own views because the are in the money flow, somewhere.

    WE like people with money spreading it around, but not when those people have an agenda.

  6. Ian @Barkham
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    Trade Associates by their very nature finish up as protectionist cabals.

    I have experience where a Trade Associates lobbied and lobbied to have Government to make them as some sort of trade commissar to manipulate the trade for their sole benefit.

    In an industry with some 30K plus companies involved but less than a 1,000 belonging to the club, so the majority have no say, the TA is able to charge them fees. These fees are as always passed to the consumer, so on top of the VAT on the goods and services the consumer can finish paying between 5-15% in fees to the TA.

    The real point is there is no improvement to standards or the way the trade is regulated. The main members of the TA ‘don’t’ pay, its just everyone else and the consumer. i.e. they have lobbied Government to force a whole industry to pay into a TA. For no gain at any level to anyone but the TA.

    In discussion with the EU’s technical body reviewing standards in the EU, they couldn’t understand how this TA got away with it. Not a position the EU would take.

    As lovely as the lobbyist involved are personally, you could argue they are just doing what they are paid to do. Accept at one stage it appeared structurally the lobby group owned the TA.

    So yes, Lobby Groups are dangerous they work against democracy in a what can only be seen as a self serving need. Surely if a Group or a Company needs to talk to a member of Parliament it should be as it is for the rest of us in this democracy via their local MP. A local MP is paid by us to do just that represent us.

  7. Steven
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    It’s a little more than disagreement. Hundreds of thousnands of people have been made ill, sterilised or killed by vaccines, governments have been bribed and some (including ours) are in business with Gates. Simply dismising things as consiracy theories does not wash. They are not theories when they are backed by facts and actions. Any police investigation is based on motive and opportunity and facts. All these things point to an extremely dark and dangerous conspiracy which must be addressed.

  8. Kevin
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    “Governments do not have to follow these people – sometimes they choose to do so, presumably when they think they are right.”

    By “right”, do you mean morally right? If so, what are the principles by which the Conservative Party determines that something is right? What assumptions does the Party make about the real world in support of those principles? For example, what value does the Conservative Party attach to the following, and why:
    God
    Man
    Family
    Society
    Law?

    In other words, when the Party claims that something is “right”, can you please show your working.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

      In answer to your 5 questions:

      There is no God.
      Some men are OK, others less so.
      Families with a mother and a father are a good idea.
      There is such a thing as society but it doesn’t necessitate big government.
      The law is too precious to be left to the current unreformed judiciary.

      • Fred H
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

        I think a God in any religion has got bored with us.
        Most men and women wish no harm, a small number are capable of the wicked pursuits.
        Ideally a family works best with one Father and one Mother.
        Society may be and mean different things to people, but Government of them rarely seems able to command a majority opinion. Why is that?
        Formulating rules (laws in essence)by which people may live peaceably has afforded the ‘smart’ ones a wonderful living for centuries.

  9. DOMINIC
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    The conventional British electorate who vote Labour and Conservative have walked into a trap ala German voters, 1929. The electorate have been deliberately deceived by the use of a free-lunch culture financed by themselves. The voter itself is financing the destruction of their own freedoms, the dismantling of their world.

    The natural electorate of the two main parties are voting for parties that no longer exist. Yes, on the tin it states ‘Labour party’ and ‘Conservative party’ but underneath there is nothing left. Both parties have become empty vessels, mere established political vehicles for careerists

    The proverbial Pandora’s Box has been thrust open and the future in the next 50 years will prove very bleak for some

  10. matthu
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    One of the purposes of this site is to examine the quality of the decisions governments and public institutions make and the consequences of them.

    That is why we are so aggrieved when Big Tech censors any dissenting view on corona-virus and the government redacts those portions of scientific advice to government which contradict the advice they have opted to follow.

    The justification for much of the policy the government has been following has been based on shoddy science, lack of data, appeal to emotion and deliberate media fear-mongering.

    Yesterday a well-known high street drug store started offering an antibody test for sale that it claims identifies post-infection proteins 97.5% of the time and is 100% specific to SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19. Widespread antibody testing has long been claimed would be the breakthrough needed to end blanket lockdown as it could potentially flag up who is immune to Covid-19. The test is manufactured by a US pharma company.

    Almost simultaneously, UK Scientists warn the public away from buying the advertised corona-virus testing kits “while doubts linger over their reliability and usefulness”.

    It is almost as if they don’t want the public to discover how widespread the virus has already spread in the underlying population – in case it gives the lie to what the government have been doing.

    The government are deliberately withholding information from the public.

    • matthu
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

      Hi John

      Could you please explain why the above post should have been held in moderation since early this morning?

      Is there something in the content that is objectionable, or something that you need to verify? Is it too long or off-topic? Perhaps you simply don’t want to rock any boats.

      Thanks for an answer.

    • zorro
      Posted May 22, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      Of course, they don’t want the public to realise how ridiculously they have over-reacted in destroying the economy!

      zorro

  11. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    All people seek to influence government’s treatment of themselves or their causes whether it be by posting on a political blog, twitter or other social media or by voting. Those with money and profile have an additional means of contacting power and influencing. It’s not fair but ’twas ever thus.

    It is for those MPs and civil servants (and the EU) who can effect the change they want to listen to all views not just the siren voices of lobby groups. Then their advantage is flattened. If they are right that is good, if they are wrong they should be ignored.

    Personally I have been lobbying for the return of my child benefit for 10 years. Evidently I have little influence as I am not rich and I am without high profile. My child benefit was removed because I was rich – the irony.

  12. Martin in Cardiff
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    Worse still than lobbying, it is plausibly and credibly alleged, that foreign billionaires fund, via cryptocurrencies, the dark web, and by other ruses, political campaigns for elections and for referendums in this country.

    Sadly, our woefully under-resourced and under-powered – and far from independent – Electoral Commission struggles to establish the true facts.

    I think that we should bring in the UN, or investigators from less apparently corrupt Third Countries, such as Italy, with experience in resolving sophisticated organised crime.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      Why is that worse than lobbying Martin?

      It is surely doing the same thing – using money to buy influence.

    • Edward2
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

      If you have any credible proof then tell the Police or even the Ele toral Commission.
      You allege crimes.
      Then do your duty and act.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        The May government suppressed the investigation into Cambridge Analytica, etc.

        • Edward2
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

          Doesn’t stop you reporting things.
          You have evidence apparently.
          Not just rumour and smears?

  13. Roy Grainger
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    If I were a billionaire I might find it more effective to ignore the government but set up some sort of leadership development charity which would draw and train participants not from the government directly but from the civil service, NGOs, charities, media and so on who could then all work against the government from their entrenched positions to further my political aims.

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Oh you mean ‘Common Purpose’?

    • Jon Reade
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      🙂 very good – I suspect all the recruits may have some sort of common purpose.

    • zorro
      Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      Leading Beyond Authority indeed!!

      zorro

  14. Know-Dice
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    Your Blog, your rules…simples

    Off topic for today…

    I notice that some shops and garden centres are putting sanitizing equipment at their entrances. I’m not sure that they have thought through what they are doing, in that they have wipes and a spray bottle of sanitizer, but after 100 people have picked up that bottle physical distancing would be irrelevant…

    Ideally they need to allocate a trained member of staff to wipe down baskets and trolleys (note: some stores already do this)…

    And finally re3 recycling, you have to book a slot to go there, except the booking system is broken… but watching the number of cars [not many] being allowed in it seems that they really have been over cautious with this…

    Have a look at the webcams on the re3 website…

    • Know-Dice
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      Oops… re3 now working…

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

        Know dice.

        Booking system has failed, tried again this morning, my local Councillor says the system is rubbish (no pun intended), so they are looking at alternative, or an update.

        Just a complete fiasco.

        • Fred H
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

          I don’t understand your problem.
          Late last week I booked early Monday, then midday on Tuesday, and early again for Wednesday.
          Are you sure you are entering the screens correctly, and when the saltshaker starts be patient….it can be minutes but then you are offered choices.

          • Alan Jutson
            Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

            Fred yes I absolutely am, I got onto the site at 10.00 on Friday morning, the first time it went live, I filled in the correct form with all of my details, and at 10.02 it told me all bookings now gone, try again tomorrow.

            I tried 39 times in 48 hours with no luck.

            Local councillor agrees with me they have had so many calls, which followed exactly my experience, they closed the site down for 3 days to try and sort it it out, it came on in a revised form this afternoon, and I now have a date for next Wednesday.

            There is a long trail of comments on local social media which also backs up my experience.

          • Fred H
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

            I only tried to help since I left it for a day after the first system failure, then succeeded in getting my 3 bookings really easily.

          • Fred H
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

            my last word as Sir John didn’t add the last one…
            The app worked for me and the hundreds who turned up like me….3 days in a row.
            Lets have some balance.!

    • APL
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:46 am | Permalink

      Know-Dice: ” I’m not sure that they have thought through what they are doing, in that they have wipes and a spray bottle of sanitizer, but after 100 people have picked up that bottle physical distancing would be irrelevant…”

      It makes perfect sense when you realize that it’s nothing to do with health precautions and everything to do with health theatre.

      • zorro
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:13 am | Permalink

        So Salisburyesque!

        zorro

    • Time Lord
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

      I hear our medical authorities at this late juncture are backtracking that the virus can be picked up from solid surfaces. It seems a major break-through has happened. No it hasn’t really. Nothing has changed except their uneducated wordage. They do it fact say there is minimal chance from the virus being picked up from hard surfaces …compared…to human to human directly.
      This was always the case. We are glad their memory of things medical stretches back a whole 3 to 4 months when the Singapore Government made a nice little video for them by way of their primary education.
      But you are right. The Singapore Government were testing one to one in transmission, that is one dose left on say a jar and one dose coughed up once in the air at a distance not 1000 jars versus zero coughs or one cough.
      Our medical authorities are no authority except that given to them by a government. We see their 33,000 success rate. , One must take what they say with a pinch of salt and wash the jars in salt too. Far above their knowledge.. It comes from the 1600s and before in fact.

  15. Alan Jutson
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    I see it has been reported in the media that French Navel vessels have been filmed escorting illegal immigrant boats out of French waters and into British waters in the Channel, so that they can then be handed over to The UK Border force vessels, to then be delivered onto UK soil.
    Thus it would appear that there is some communication between the two governments on co-operation, but perhaps not in the manner often suggested.

    I thought we paid France £ Millions each year to try to stop illegal crossings !

    If the above is true, then no wonder the number of illegals attempting to cross the channel is growing.

    • Corazon
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      Do it yourself, stop asking for help from Europe . You voted to be free didn’t you?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

        Corazon

        What a silly statement.

        Not asking for any help, just want our government to police our borders properly, not to be encouraging and being possibly complicit in people smuggling from France. or anywhere else for that matter.

        We have proper systems for people to apply for asylum, why should illegals be able to jump the queue.

        Clearly these people do not think France a member of the EU is safe enough, or does not provide them with enough opportunity for the future, otherwise why come here.

      • a-tracy
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        Like Malta do?

      • graham1946
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

        There’s a difference between asking for help and paying for it and not getting it. Rather like the Blair debacle of giving up some of our rebate in exchange for reform of the CAP – that never happened either. Nice honorable people the EU – take the money and give nothing. We had over 40 years of it and now they don’t want us to stop paying even though we still get nothing for a billion a month.

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

        Corazon

        Time and again we asked our governments to put a brake on mass immigration. Time and again they ignored us and still do so, apparently.

        You have it the wrong way around.

        We would have been happy enough in the EU had our Government controlled immigration better.

        There would never have been a referendum, let alone a Leave vote had it not been for this.

        Now it’s for all to see who was really to blame and it wasn’t the EU. For this one reason it was worth it.

        This is especially galling since I’ve just sat through a patronising government broadcast telling us all to behave ourselves, while the same government facilitates criminality in the English Channel – doubtless for these queue jumpers to go ahead of me in the welfare system the first time I need it.

        No wonder Boris can’t show his face.

  16. DOMINIC
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    I know something. Backbench Tory MPs have almost zero influence and zero power over the actions of a Tory government. Many public institutions and indeed the Tory party have been captured by progressive and activist groups and decent Tory MPs who reject social engineering and attacks on conventionality simply refuse to confront it. It’s become easier to remain silent rather than confront it

    The Labour controlled BBC still operates with impunity. So does Labour’s Elecotral Comm. The Home Office and Education is now controlled by left wing pressure groups especially SW and the leftist teaching unions with their destructive social agendas

    Labour’s Supreme Court reigns supreme

    Even Patel tip-toes around Labour when referencing abuse this week.

    It is upsetting for the moral millions to see this nation being dismantled and then controlled by minority rights activists in London. They are determined to IMPOSE their world upon each and every one of us on a second by second basis. We are IMMERSED in race and gender propaganda, day by day. It’s become exhausting. Even product advertising isn’t immune.

    And education is lost and has been subsumed

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

      How have we got a clean Brexit then?

      One battle at a time.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

        There is no more such a thing as a “clean” Brexit than there is a “pretty” disembowelment, or “neat-and-tidy” plane crash, or “harmless” munitions depot fire, Lynn.

        Stop being silly.

        You know it.

    • Way Up North
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

      One detects in many politics from the Labour Party a London mentality, centre of the known world

    • Original Chris
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

      I think you are right, Dominic, and those few truly Conservative MPs who should be fighting hard for this country and for Conservative principles are apparently unwilling to do anything or simply do not possess the guts or the ability to save this country. I believe that ultimately it will be President Trump who will save this country. He is one courageous and principled individual who will always stand up for the people of the USA, but he is also focused on bringing down the global deep state that have so plagued and directed our politics for generations.

      Our politicians have been so mollycoddled by Brussels and so subdued by the mindnumbing bureaucracy, that they have forgotten how to fight for this country and its people. They seem to have lost all pride in our nation, and instead are completely subsumed by the progressive agenda.

      When people want jobs, security and prosperity, the only things our politicians seem to offer is more taxation and “initiatives” to reach a zero carbon economy (what nonsense that is and what flaws in the “science”), gender identity politics focusing on body parts and types of toilets, political correctness, social engineering policemen instead of policemen to fight and solve crimes, and so on.

      I cannot understand how true Conservative politicians have accepted this agenda and how they seem utterly unwilling to effect change. To some of them Margaret Thatcher was their hero. None of them measures up to her, and she had more courage than the lot of them put together. I think she would have been ashamed of them.

    • Fenlander
      Posted May 24, 2020 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

      One silver lining of this lockup fiasco is that parents are now considering home schooling as a viable option, having been compelled to takeover as their children’s teachers.

      Even once schools do reopen, the “new normal” nonsense about social distancing must affect class sizes and overall change the previous monopoly relationship claimed for education by the state.

  17. Nigl
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Off topic but current and if true disgraceful. See Farage’s video of the French navy escorting migrants to UK waters and ‘handing them’ over.

    What is going on. Are we being lied to. Ms Patel and you Sir JR seem to have some serious answering to do.

  18. Javelin
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    There is no difference between a billionaire and a pension fund. Both hold equity and both employ people. Equity is only worth either the assets or the dividends.

    It will be arbitary where you draw the line between size and number of shareholders?

  19. DOMINIC
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    French naval vessels escorting immigrant packed vessels into UK waters. Does Patel and Johnson know or have they given Macron tacit approval?

  20. a-tracy
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    Private sector SME lobby groups such as fsb, fpb are a waste of space in this crisis. The CBI doesn’t represent SME’s full stop. The IOD have been no help throughout this crisis.

    They aren’t even advising their smaller members how much notice and redundancy pay ‘laying people off’ is going to cost them, the business owner needs to start thinking of this now, specifically how much notice they will need to give each of their employees as well as redundancy pay by age group, they should be provided with templates on fair selection for redundancy, all of this lack of information will end up in lots of painful and expensive claims against them and go on to polish them off.

    Now we are told this lockdown is effectively going on to September because parents cannot return to work with an easing of furlough relief from July and The Best University, actually doing the research, is now declaring they won’t be having group student meetings for a year there are serious repercussions.

  21. Adam
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    John Redwood’s Diary belongs to its owner to use and moderate in the way any other diary author would wish for theirs. It is a fine medium with consistently fresh relevant content, maintaining a high quality standard. Well-reasoned opposition to the views of others is allowed, as are contrasting opinions and criticism, adding balance.

    If other MPs reached similar standards of excellence our nation would be a better place. Those who wish to conduct specific campaigns have numerous channels available to them, more suited to their narrow targets.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:41 am | Permalink

      hear hear

    • ed2
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

      If other MPs reached similar standards of excellence our nation would be a better place.

      >
      agreed.

  22. glen cullen
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Maybe not a billionaire or maybe not even a millionaire but the influence of Nigel Farage has been far and wide

    But even his reporting on LBC of the French navy supporting the migrants crossing the channel wasn’t even picked up by MSM nor the Home Office

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

      I have known Nigel since he first took an interest in politics (later than he claims). When the history is written the damage he did and the delay he cause to Brexit will be totted up and will be seen to be far in excess of the CV19 debacle. He learned his lines and makes big mistakes when he deviates.
      For instance Nigel said ‘Britain must take its share of Syrians’. Of course he took £250k or thereabout from the EU for 17 years and now has a pretty good pension to look forward to. It’s funded of course so if the EU goes belly up, exMEPs pensions are entirely safe.

      • glen cullen
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

        Love him or hate him, he’s out there investigating the issues that our government wishes to hide

        • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

          The fishermen are the heroes, just as they informed Booker of the fishing quota disaster, Booker was just the reporter and Farage is also just the reporter.
          Better than nothing of course, but it will be people like JR who hold the Government to account, and ensure the return of millions of illegals instead of yet another amnesty.

          • glen cullen
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:41 am | Permalink

            The people need to see action, its been 11yrs of a tory govt….zero result in reducing migrantion

            Any action

          • graham1946
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

            Certainly better than waiting for the Guardian or the BBC to report it.

      • Sea Warrior
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

        That line caused me to leave UKIP and rejoin the Conservatives. It was a good example of someone making up policy on the hoof.

        • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

          Oh there were worse! He said initially that when a candidate ‘Trump was dangerous’. Very much else of course, including giving the UKIP membership list to a non member to gerrymander an election etc.
          For the sake of BREXIT a lot of people kept quiet.

        • Fred H
          Posted May 23, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

          making up Policy on the hoof?

          –What exactly is the UK Government doing in the last 2 months?

      • Fred H
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

        what nonsense….

      • Original Chris
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

        Nonsense.

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

        Lynn

        He has focused a light into the dark corners of politics not just in the EU but here as well.

        Not many politicians want to do themselves out of a job.

        Of course he got paid when he was in the EU, would you have done it for free ?

  23. Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    Maybe the Government should create a “Ministry for Lobbying” as the sole recipient of submissions from self serving billionairs, industrialists, charities, trade unions, MPs and others.

    Totally unworkable I hear you say. Since when has that stopped us ?

  24. JimS
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    It would be a lot simpler if MPs just took advice from their own constituents! It must be quite easy to tell if that is genuine, not a ‘cut and paste’ from one of those activist organisations.

    It would also help if we got back to the days when government advice came carrying ‘the crown’ not via a ‘quango’, fake charity or bought charity. How can it be justified, the government using our money to fund fake third-parties to then ‘influence’ government?

    At election time material that is posted out carries the publisher’s details, it is a pity that isn’t the rule all the time.

    Something needs to be done about the BBC too. Look at their website and see how many stories are headlined with questions. That isn’t news, it is campaigning.

  25. rose
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    I am concerned about the manipulation of emotion on Twitter. This happens whenever any sort of fee is charged to foreigners, no matter how small, to recoup a fraction of the cost of mass immigration. It happened over the admin fee charged for the registration of EU citizens, some four million of them at least, and it has just happened again in the case of NHS employees. The emotional media led campaign will not stop there.

    The English hold their nationality and welfare state far too cheap, and love to give everything away for nothing, but eventually they will have nothing left to give. Far too much emotion is deciding these matters and not enough trained minds. If there are modest measures to recoup costs, they should be applied to everyone, without millions of exemptions. The next thing will be passport renewal.

  26. Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    Order-Order.com today has an article apparently missed by the BBC about Nigel Farage filming the migrant trafficking from France to the UK.

    “This shocking video reveals that the illegal migration trade, which is a multi-million €uro criminal enterprise, is being facilitated by the French Navy. Nigel Farage yesterday videoed evidence of a dangerously over-burdened dinghy being escorted by a French Naval vessel across the English channel until it was out of French waters, where in British waters it was met by what he reports to be a UK border force vessel. “

    Will Priti Patel be making a statement on the subject?

    • Corazon
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      What exactly did you expect? Inside the EU there were rules on this. But you voted to take back control, and go it alone. Well here you are, the French have sent a bunch of migrants over, get on with it, sort it out on your own. There are plenty more on the way too. It’s all up to you Brits now, like you wanted. Well done Brexiters!

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

        It may have escaped your attention, but we are still bound by EU rules until 31st December 2020. Hence one of the very reasons we do not want to extend the so called talks any longer.

        • margaret howard
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

          Alan Jutson

          Which EU rules force us to take illegal immigrants?

          • graham1946
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

            The one Mrs May signed which said we cannot send them back if they would get a worse deal than staying here. That applies to the whole of the EU.

    • rose
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      You have left out the bit about the boat owner (the one Farage was in) being threatened, and the French naval vessel deliberately eclipsing the handover.

      • bill brown
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

        rose

        what is your proof of this statement?

        • Edward2
          Posted May 23, 2020 at 6:15 am | Permalink

          It was filmed.
          It is available on line.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

      This needs an ‘urgent question’ in the house of commons

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      If she does it will doubtless be:- “Nothing to see here move along please”.

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      Unaccompanied children amongst the immigrants.
      Why do the French authorities not take them into care? What kind of civilisation would leave them at the mercy of people-traffickers?

      • Fred H
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

        I think you answered your own question?

    • dixie
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      Did the French navy really facilitate this illegal activity or rather did the illegal migrants refuse French assistance and so the French ship was duty bound to stand by in case assistance was needed until a UK vessel attended within UK waters.

      What do you expect naval vessels to do, compliant with UNCLOS, when these small boats are in the water?

      The answer to this problem is to realise this is a business, these people are customers and not victims being trafficked and the solution must be to destroy the business case.

      • glen cullen
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

        You only have to be compliant if refugees or indeed passengers are genuine

        If a journey is know to be involved in criminal activity the navy (French or English) has a duty to pursue, inspection and maintain any vessel and return that vessel to its known port of origin if possible or first save haven for investigation

        • Original Chris
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

          Quite right, gc.

        • dixie
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 4:21 am | Permalink

          How do you do that with a small inflatable overloaded with people and ensure there is no risk of harm to either party.

          What was the inflatable’s port of origin?

          • glen cullen
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:48 am | Permalink

            The French navy should’ve stopped them immediately as it as clearly unsafe to continue at sea in a unsafe vessel

          • zorro
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:25 am | Permalink

            France of course or are you going to claim that they came from the Middle East in a rubber dinghy? Get a grip!

            zorro

          • dixie
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

            @Zorro
            “France” is not a port.

            Make no mistake, I want to see this activity stopped but demanding that every such vessel must be stopped from leaving the French shore, or turned around mid channel etc are impractical and might well put our own people at serious risk.

            How exactly do you intercept and board an overloaded rib manned by uncooperative people in the channel, force it to turn around and go back to the French coast without endangering our people unnecessarily or those in the inflatables?

      • Posted May 21, 2020 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

        I don’t believe that the French Navy are obliged to shadow the boats in case they get into trouble, and neither are the British. They should merely prevent the overcrowded boats from departing French shores due to social distancing regulations.

        The UK Coastguard threatened to commandeer the boat from which Nigel was filming if he filmed the hand-over from the French Navy to the British Border Farce.

        Looks very much like aiding and abetting illegal people trafficking.

        • Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

          +1 if the Govt are complicit in people trafficking they must be pursued through the Courts.

        • glen cullen
          Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

          concur with your comments

        • dixie
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 4:33 am | Permalink

          It is not trafficking if the passengers are paying.

          I agree they should be stopped from departing French shores but that is likely quite difficult with a long shoreline and non-port departures.

          Once they are at sea how do you propose they are intercepted if they are unwilling to cooperate?

          • glen cullen
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:52 am | Permalink

            It is traficking paid or not if its unregulated and unplaned and unscheduled

            Its called the black-market

        • zorro
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

          They have absolutely no power to do that, and they appear to be complicit in facilitating illegal entry…

          zorro

      • Fred H
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

        what do they do when French fishing boats blockade ports?

        • dixie
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 4:22 am | Permalink

          @FredH – I don’t know but I amagine such vessels can be boarded more safely than an overcrowded inflatable.

          • a-tracy
            Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

            Ask Malta and Italy?
            1 May 2020 – Arrivals of migrants in Malta have surged in 2020, with around 1,500 … for the Mediterranean island group after being turned away by Italian. It’s been all over the Guardian

        • Fred H
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

          they stand on the decks and just watch the chaos.

  27. Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    You complain of the symptoms of the destruction of the British State, Nation and culture, all of which was dismantled long before 2010.
    The MPs whom you abuse, against all odds have delivered a clean Brexit, without which none of the rest can be restored.
    You are seeing the left running in circles, screaming and shouting, because of that defeat. They are in their death throws. Inarticulate, garbled, contradictory, even the practised BBC can no longer tell clever (believable) lies. All is laid bare and the people will judge. They know it and are powerless.
    Give credit to that tiny number of MPs – Tories who had to stand against their own Government especially, who have saved us from vassal state status. They achieved the equivalent of winning the Derby on the slowest horse, even though it was the Favourite!
    Once we get past the WA, all things are within our country are within our power. We shall campaign more effectively that any Billionaire, trade union or other Interest group because we, the people have the vested interest of the British People at the heart of everything we do., and we will ensure that every one of our representatives, regardless of party politics, shares that basic necessity for a prosperous, peaceful and happy nation.

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      Sorry – this is in answer to Dominic’s post. I have misplaced it.

  28. Sea Warrior
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    I’ll add my support to those who have raised the issue today of the ongoing cross-Channel invasion. It shames the government – particularly the Home Office.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      Hear hear – a sad day

  29. ed2
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Please find somewhere else in the media who do want to run with conspiracy theories if you believe you have a case.

    >
    John, the poor conspire it is a fact of law, but when claims are made the rich conspire, suddently it is a “conspiracy theory” to be mocked by all?

    • zorro
      Posted May 22, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      What was the origin of the phrase ‘conspiracy theory’ again? 😉

      zorro

  30. percy openshaw
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    For what it is worth, Sir John, I applaud your aversion to the politics of suspicion and associated conspiracy theories. What does it matter who is making an argument? If it collapses under public scrutiny, the undue influence which peddles the idea will be defeated in any case. Having said that, to ensure that this sort of “intellectual justice” is done and seen to be done, governments the world over should strive to be as transparent as possible in all areas barring those of intelligence and security. This is why many members of the public have been dismayed by the opacity which appears to surround the deliberations of the SAGE committee. But to return to the point, disinterested argument is key; stooping to gossip and suspicion is a vice.

  31. Excuse me!
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    MPs never took even one piece of advice or wish from a person by virtue he or she was a constituent or voter in general or a human being in his or her own right.( in regard to dealing with the Virus )

  32. BobDixon
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Can you comment on The Home Office and UK border force reference immigrants using the channel to get access to the UK.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

      recall the house for urgent question

      • Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

        And return ALL illegal immigrants to France.

        • glen cullen
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:53 am | Permalink

          bang-on

        • dixie
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

          How do you return these illegal immigrants to France, if France doesn’t want them?

  33. Newmania
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    If its the usual web nut intellectual pollution why mention it at all ..as if we didn`t know

  34. Mark B
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    The question needs to be asked. Are the needs of lobbyists greater than that of constituents ? If not, then why does government take the opposite view when deciding policy ?

  35. Better than a human
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    If multi-billionaires did not get political influence, power, there would be little reason if any, in fact none, for them to try to get even more money and they do .
    Once you’ve got more than enough cars, houses, yachts, and become bored there is nothing else in life but power and unlike money there is no upper limit to the power which does not bear fruit increasingly. MPs are human beings, let me be the first to declare it. Just my opinion.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

      Most alas are rather odd ones and lack any grasp of physics, engineering, economics, maths or logic other than perhaps about 2% of them. How many have any Maths, Physics or Engineering beyond GCSE level I wonder 5% perhaps?

      Also slightly odd by virtue of aspiring to become an MP. As Auberon Waugh used to say anyone aspiring to be a politician has by dint of that shown themselves to be quite unsuitable. With a few notable exceptions of course.

      • Better than a human
        Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

        “As Auberon Waugh used to say anyone aspiring to be a politician has by dint of that shown themselves to be quite unsuitable. ”
        I’ll take your word he did say this. It fits. I mourn his death every day.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

          He also said:-

          “Anyone in England who puts himself forward to be elected to a position of political power is almost bound to be socially or emotionally insecure, or criminally motivated, or mad.”

          JR is of course excluded by “almost”.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

          Also:-

          The urge to pass new laws must be seen as an illness, not much different from the urge to bite old women. Anyone suspected of suffering from it should either be treated with the appropriate pills or, if it is too late for that, elected to parliament [or congress, as the case may be] and paid a huge salary with endless holidays, to do nothing whatever. — Auberon Waugh

  36. ed2
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Illegal immigration is just a side show to divert us from what’s really going on. They always play on our prejudices, don’t bite, they will be doing it on purpose.

  37. Abendrot
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Dear Sir John,

    You often answer some of the questions put by your subscribers. Looking through the mail today, it is glaringly obvious that one topic is on many people’s minds; to wit, that of assisted (apparently) illegal immigration into the UK. I think the least you can do is to commit yourself to raising the matter with the appropriate authorities. Thank you.

    Reply I have done so and have written about this recently. I am very keen to see the UK close down this wicked trade.

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply.
      It is indeed wilfully wicked to allow these people, invaders, to force their way into the country and it is the more so because many of these people despise both us and our society.

    • M Davis
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

      To Reply:

      Thank you!

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted May 22, 2020 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

      To Sir John, It’s a shame that the PM isn’t sound on the issue. He just doesn’t care.

  38. MeSET
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    If billionaires have not influence then what are they for?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

      I do not mind them having influence but this clearly should stop short of syphoning other people’s taxes and money into their personal pockets by using their influence to get damaging laws passed. It is clear that this happens far too often at EU level, UK level and regional levels.

      This particularly in renewables, health and safely, anti-competitive take overs, banking, accounting rules, the legal profession, pension rules, ISAS, baby bonds, gas and electric certificates, landlord licensing and other such hugely damaging areas.

  39. Diane
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    The Home Secretary was speaking on LBC yesterday a.m. on the Nick Ferrari show & indicated that there was plenty of work & efforts being made with regard to the almost daily surge of illegal migrants. LBC itself made an extensive & excellent investigation into what is going on across the Channel, towards the end of last year & I assume passed on their findings to the Government. No matter your opinion of the person or his party, Nigel Farage is always wilfully ignored or belittled & denigrated by politicians and journalists alike, persona non grata, his right eroded in bringing to people’s attention something which affects us all & which worries many. Have said this time & again, the lack of transparency & scant information available to us the general public in relation to all aspects of this issue is totally unacceptable. There are few options open to concerned citizens to find out what is going on apart from reading press reports, when you can find them. (BBC / Local News / Dover is where brief & standard wording reports are to be found on the website when these events occur ) and perhaps writing to our MPs. I will second Bob’s earlier question in asking if the Home Secretary will be making a statement on this subject and if so, when can we tune in.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

      agree with your comments

  40. beresford
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    ‘Close down this wicked trade’ expresses concern for the migrants and not for the cuckolded British people. Several years ago a Home Secretary said ‘We must break the link between getting into a boat and being re-settled in Europe’, so we’ve known this was coming for some time. It can be stopped rapidly simply by breaking the smugglers’ business model, as has been done by Australia. Remove them to a poor country outside of Europe and they will stop coming.

    • glen cullen
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

      It will only take one boat to be turned back (on TV) and the process will stop

      • Sea Warrior
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

        I don’t think that will work. Instead, they should be put in a plane and sent straight back to their country of origin. But I would agree that publicity is important.

  41. Ian @Barkham
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    Well of topic, but relates to our every day indoctrination sessions.

    The ONS has stated today that some 137,000 of us become infected each day with Corvid. Then in the same paragraph suggest they could be 37% over and 51% under in their calculations.

    This is the type of science and facts that our government and our politicians say we should be guided by – go figure!

  42. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    It would, though, help if Government ensured that lobbying didn’t pay, was often as not counter productive.

  43. John Hatfield
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think all lobbyists believe they are working for the wider good, John. Personal profit is a strong motivator.

  44. Ian Pennell
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    Dear Sir John Redwood,

    It is an unfortunate truth that “Those with the Money Call the Shots!”, very much so when a country is impoverished and dependent on the goodwill of the Markets (or indeed an unskilled poor individual who is dependant on a wage from a nasty shouty boss).

    If Britain is dependent of the kindness of wealthy foreign investors to get the economy growing- you have to make it conducive for those investors to spend their money in Britain, if you tax them too much then they are off. If the country gets massively in debt with a shrunken Economy we are (as a nation) likely to be at the mercy of the Gilt markets-given the trajectory of the National Debt, budget Deficit and the worst Recession in three centuries- this country could very much end up at the mercy of the Markets.

    It is a fact of life that the Economic policies we can have will be dictated by our geo-political strength compared to other countries and that (in turn) depends on how wealthy Britain is. If we end up desperate for lots more money from overseas it weakens Britain’s ability to stand up to bullying super-powers like China and Russia. If we are dependent on other countries to trade with us we will be under more pressure to accept their conditions in any Trade Deal (like with the USA).

    Now, Printing Money (but buying Gold/ Platinum Securities with it) is one way to forestall a disastrous slump in the Economy whilst also protecting Sterling. It can be used as a way of maintaining wealth so that Britain does not have to borrow from overseas and is less dependent on exports.

    On a positive front, Britain buys much more from EU countries and from China than we sell to them (and printing money- but backing it up with Gold will enable us to continue doing this going forwards): This gives Britain an ability to stand up to the Chinese Government and demand reparations for the damage caused by Coronavirus, likewise we can demand access to the EU in a good trade deal and threaten to put up tariffs on (say) food imports if we dont get one. Money is Power!

  45. glen cullen
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    Home Office statement on order-order

    The French boat was not escorting the migrant boat. International maritime law prevents border force intervening with boats unless they are expressly invited to. The boats were shadowing the migrant vessel in case it sank and the people needed rescuing. The first duty French and British vessels is to save life at sea. Upon arrival those aboard the boats have to be processed through the asylum system before the Government is legally able to return them

    • Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

      Let’s see a few Million returned then.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

      Sorry Glen not the rules when you know an illegal activity is taking place in your own French waters.

      Let them go to the UK then its their problem more like it. !

      Yes I have been in a powerboat when it has been stopped and boarded twice.

      Once when on the Thames as we were approaching the Houses of Parliament to check out we were not a possible threat, asked for destination, and if they could look below. all done very politely and with a smile, but done nevertheless, and once as we approached a French harbour after crossing the Channel when they asked the purpose of our journey.

      • glen cullen
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

        agree with your assessment – can’t believe the home office made that statement

      • dixie
        Posted May 22, 2020 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

        What illegal activity in French waters?

        Did you comply with River Police/Coastguard requests? Do you think these people in the ribs comply?

        What do you suggest the navy personnel do, exactly?

        • glen cullen
          Posted May 22, 2020 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

          Its not my statement its a statement from the ‘home office’

  46. ian
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    They try to come up with ideas but their days are taken up by listening and replying to nonsense, they have missed another opportunity to sort out their mess over the last forty years.
    They all talk about spending and how much it is all going to cost, nobody talking about the lost taxes and how many years it will take to get back to the same tax take as before the virus hit.
    30 billion pounds a year just on commercial realty alone, gone and 55 billion short on taxes last year which come to an 85 billion pounds gap and I have even started to count anything else. It took the Gov 10 years from the last financial crisis to reel in the tax gap from 165 billion down to 30 billion down in 2018 which has gone back up to 55 billion in 2019, so how big is the tax gap this year, 250 billion or more and how many years will it take to come back down to 85 billion a year. When you’re this far down the hole it time to start thinking on your own and put the phone and emails on hold for a few months and just have a stub at solving it.
    Education has been a bad joke as far as I’m concerned, never received much education myself as you can see by my writing when seeing for all of their education it all boiled down to a printing press and minus interest rates was the sum total of it.

  47. hefner
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    I understand that the Trade Bill that got its second reading yesterday (20/05) does not appear to allow Parliament to influence trade policy.
    Is it true? And if it is, isn’t it a rather surprising feature given that the UK is to have its own trade policy for the first time in 50 years and that we were told that Parliament is supposed to take back control?

    Reply It is an Act of Parliament!

    • hefner
      Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      Thanks a lot. Indeed it is, but once adopted what possibilities will the MPs have to influence the trade discussions? Simply call Liz Truss to report to the International Trade Select Committee?

      reply Parliament will decide whether to approve an FTA or not

  48. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

    Off topic; back to Coronavirus

    7-day moving average data for total cases and total deaths continues to fall.

    Provided that track and trace is fully in place by 1 June as promised, we should be able to get more people back to work.

    Perhaps reduce minimum spacing from 2m to 1.5m

  49. Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    JR there is a serious problem in that small business people are assuming social distancing will be semi-permanent. Their business are rendered uneconomic as a result and they are closing because they think they will be better off on universal credit.

  50. ed2
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:24 pm | Permalink

    What we are worried about is not a peer reviewed vaccine (although I read that phase 2 trials are being skipped) and a RNA vaccine never authoried. What we are worried about is govts slipping something into the mix, they have so many tricks and ways to control us these days. A Pentagon video (not debunked) talks of a vaccine to prevent religious extremism.

    As I say, I will be graciously declining any compulary vaccine.

  51. ed2
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    Open the pubs and end this nanny state.
    Never ever do this again, we need emergency laws to protect us from most politicians.

  52. ed2
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

    We need a new emergency Corona virus act that protects our liberty from hysterical overreactions from the Media and Politicians. If you are under 50 you are more likely to die from drowning.

    We need a independent review into how the WHO is allowed to control so many nations and whether the MSM is controlled at a global level.

  53. Watcher BBC
    Posted May 21, 2020 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

    BBC Question Time. At last, the first time it has been bearable for months. The technology has finally caught up with the BBC and people do not sound like Miss Havisham sat in her jilted carriage voicing hurt concerns down a speaking tube.
    Even the hi-tech cameras were nearly like their potential. Reasoned arguments. “Good” I thought, all programme long. But at the end “We are going get 12 members of the public to take part online next week .” Oh no……
    The BBC’s idea of “the public” and its invited audience “the public” are one step too far into general insanity. Never was such a British public and hopefully that public will never come to pass.
    So, they will probably ruin their own show again. We’ll see. I shall watch and listen once again and see. No more than that.

  54. M Brandreth- Jones
    Posted May 22, 2020 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

    Your diary at this present time is useful even if we don’t comment or interact. Seeing the same names offers a little social activity . Both the well known social media outlets contain much verbal abuse and difficulty in establishing any sort of sensible debate or general discussion. What makes discussion is a feeling of involvement which is very limited at present. Television programmes are non involvement . W e see others socialising but not us !

  55. rose
    Posted May 24, 2020 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    The Fake News Frenzy over Cummings reminds me of the assault on Nicolas Ridley in 1990. Regarded as the pilot, it was thought if he could be removed on a trumped up charge, the PM would soon follow, and so it turned out. If she had held out, as he wished to do, instead of giving in, events would have overtaken the frenzy in the form of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, very soon afterwards. How different things might have been. So I hope this PM will stand up to this calculated attempt to drop the pilot all over again, and for the same reason.

  • 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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