Mr Cameron speaks well

Last year at conference Mr Cameron spoke about the UK offering leadership in fighting poverty, and leadership in fighting tyranny. This year he led with more domestic ambitions. His main overseas comment was that “by the end of 2014 all UK combat operations in Afghanistan will have come to an end”. Some of us welcome this change of emphasis, but want a speedier exit.

He gave a good speech about the challenge of getting the UK back to work and spreading propsperity much more widely. He seeks welfare reform, so that it is always worthwhile working. The system should give incentives to those who try, rather than rewards to those who do not, whilst looking after those who cannot work. He seeks school reform, so many more can have the advantage of a great education. And he seeks enterprise reform, so many more can and will set up businesss, and many more can help their business grow and create the orders and jobs we need. He wants to spread privilege, and is on the side of those who want to be better off.

When reviewing the achievements of the government he mentioned the veto on the Fiscal Treaty, the deportation of Abu Hamza, the Olympics and the Council Tax freeze.

All of that was well received by the audience. The question we need to ask is what policies will follow from this concentration on helping the strivers and emphasising the need to improve the UK’s ability to compete in the world?

I did not expect there to be policy initiatives in the Prime Minister’s speech. It was best that he set out the big arguments, and gave a sense of direction. We need to look elsewhere to see if there is going to be back up to the speech, if the whole government will now be fired up to deliver the vision.

The Chancellor made two announcements in his speech. His decision to set out a “generous new tax regime for shale gas” is welcome. It shows that he is now exercised by the dear energy and the looming energy gap this country faces. We will find out if he can change enough in UK energy policy to deliver the larger quantities of cheaper energy industry – and householders – need or whether the government remains locked in by renewable and emission control directives to dear and scarce energy. It think it is going to take more than a welcome tax break for shale, though that does help.I suspect we have to tell the EU we will not be implementing all their directives by 2015, if we want to keep the lights on at a price we can afford.

The Chancellor’s decision to grant a CGT tax break on shares an employee holds in a company, offered in return for waiving certain employment rights is more contentious. I doubt it will make a lot of difference. People investing in the company they work for can already secure CGT advantages. A general cut in CGT rate would be a much better stimulus to investment and enterprise, and would probably collect more revenue at the same time.

The Prime Minister clearly thinks the Gove reforms of education will be sufficient in themselves to spread the opportunity of an education as good as Eton to many more pupils. I fear that is optimistic. We have been discussing recently on this site other options to speed the progress of better education. It would be a good idea to allow for profit companies to operate, and to permit selection by academic ability as well as selection by the other currently approved criteria.

A lot rests on the huge welfare reform underway. I think the government needs to do more immediately to tackle the question of eligibility. We have talked here about Treasure Island syndrome, with many people able to come from overseas to enjoy welfare benefits and public services without contributing. Getting to grips with that would help create a greater sense of fairness, cut the bills and show all legally settled people here that the government is serious about welfare being for those in need, not a way of life. UK Ministers have sought to limit the right of EU migrants to come here to receive benefits, and now face a legal challenge from the EU over this fundamental point.

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  1. Martin Cole
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    It must have been a struggle finding that headline for this posting.

    I agree he does speak well. The problem of course is that most of what he says is either cliché or emotive garbage, he then doesn’t follow through on the lofty intents with which his speeches are further garnished and most destructively of all, he surrounds himself with fifth raters who similarly lack any feel for either history or developing world events.

    • Lord Blagger
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:20 am | Permalink


      And then you have to look at what he didn’t say. That’s always informative.

      Just like Ed Milliband (son of Adolphe), the debt and deficit don’t get a look in.

      After all, the deficit is MPs fault. They have made the decisions to spend more than taxes.

      Likewise with the debt, its deliberate policy not to talk about how much debt the government has unless you are trying to get elected. Then you make promises about coming clean, but once elected, “It’s not the way it works”

    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

      Ouch! But true…

  2. Pete the Bike
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 6:18 am | Permalink

    Trouble with Dave is that he talks the talk but when it comes to walking the walk he’s sadly lacking.

    • Disaffected
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

      He is a poor con man and a poor PM. It will take the plebs to make him realise it through the ballot box, it will not happen through looking in the mirror at his born to rule persona.

    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

      “when it comes to walking the walk”, he’s (not got started-ed)

    • Bazman
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      David Cameron’s father had trouble walking he says. It’s just as well for him that he worked in the City and was able to set up a network of funds abroad for his family. If he had worked for Remploy he would have been sacked.

  3. Sue
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    “UK Ministers have sought to limit the right of EU migrants to come here to receive benefits, and now face a legal challenge from the EU over this fundamental point”

    Many of the other countries like Germany and Spain are limiting benefits for other EU citizens. You really just have to change the rules. In Spain for example, you cannot use their NHS unless you are registered for work. You cannot claim “anything” at all unless you have worked for at least a year. Even then, it’s time limited.

    I find the report on cheap labour from the EU in Boston, Lincs very disturbing.

    This government is treating Britons with sheer contempt and I would not be surprised if relations with foreigners, through no fault of their own (I blame this government) becomes as strained as in Greece. You are simply inviting hard right groups to cause trouble. Without doubt, Britons are not playing on an level playfield. Many have families, pay rent or have mortgages and cannot live on the pittance that these “landworkers” get. To say Britons are lazy and stopping their benefits is a nasty thing to do when there are no jobs for them to keep themselves and their families.

    So, I’ve just read this : Major breakthrough for a Financial Transaction Tax at EU level

    “UNI Finance welcomes this major breakthrough and decided to join a broad coalition of trade unions, NGOs, international organizations as well as finance industry professionals and experts supporting the Financial Transaction Tax.

    Besides the four biggest economies of the Euro zone – France, Italy, Spain, Germany – also Austria, Belgium, Estonia, Greece, Portugal, Slovakia and Slovenia are supporters. Others might join in the further process.

    Although the procedure of Enhanced Cooperation is complicated, there is now quite a strong political will behind the project, so that we can expect definitive implementation rather soon, perhaps already during 2013.

    The next steps are:
    1) European Commission delivers their tax proposal (likely to be based on their existing design of 0.1% on stock and bonds and 0.01% on derivatives trades),
    2) EU parliamentary vote (they’ve already passed a resolution in support), and finally
    3) a qualified majority vote in the European Council (which could happen as early as December)”.

    Does this mean the FTT will be forced upon the UK? The EU is determined to have our financial sector moved to Berlin. That would finish us completely. It will be the Conservatives fault if that happens. Your party will go down in history as the one that completely killed Britain. Things will get so bad, you’ll be lucky if you’re ever in power again.

    It all boils down to one thing. The EU and it’s hold over us. We will never recover our economy until we can control who works here and who can claim benefits. If we are to survive, we have to leave and then renegotiate. Until that happens, you will get no support from ordinary people.

    UK Governments have turned us from being a close community just after the war when everyone pulled together to a splintered, bitter nation. You’ve forced us into being selfish. “As long as my family is alright”, is what people say. You’ve killed our community pubs with your insane nannying and you’ve lied, cheated and taken vast amounts of our money without one iota of consent.

    We have been treated abominably. I’m happy to pay taxes when it is used for our own countries benefit but not for the EU or overseas aid or keeping (overseas arrivals-ed) in mansions or for wars that we have no business in.

    I will avoid tax at all costs, even if I have to barter, buy second hand on ebay, Gumtree, Car boots or do without. It’s a simple as that, you will not have my co-operation until I get a say in how my money is being spent and have given me back my life.

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 11:10 am | Permalink

      Indeed it is highly moral, to legally, avoid tax in the UK. Anything that stops Cameron/Osborne wasting it or giving it away is beneficial.

      I see European Union has been given the Nobel Peace Prize. It was farcical enough when they gave one to Al Gore and Obama, but one for the undemocratic, corrupt, evil, socialist disaster that is the EU – just before it all, hopefully, finally falls to pieces?

      Strange also that Cameron did not explain why he does not want us to be a “Greater Switzerland” or mention the £1M IHT promise still awaited.

      • Sue
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        “Indeed it is highly moral, to legally, avoid tax in the UK” and the black market is thriving where I live. I can imagine it is the same on any large housing estate where people are struggling to make ends meet.

        • Bazman
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:38 am | Permalink

          What black market? Working cash in hand? The ones on the housing estates don’t earn enough legally to pay tax and the tax they avoid is often duty on alcohol and tobacco. You have to ask yourself why they are reduced to doing this? Lifelogics ‘waste’ will also include any benefits, roads, and the NHS. Services he claims not to use. All benefits should be stopped and the NHS paid for by the user before treatment in the form of cash or insurance and all roads to be tolled with the unused ones closed. Ditto the railways. No taxes on anything or anybody especially the ‘wealth creators’ ie the rich, will fund this utopia where no one will be left behind and if they do will be helped by charity. Sound about right lifelogic? It should. Yeah!? but no, but….Ram it.

          • Richard
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

            Bazman, I have tried several times to read and understand your post but without success.
            What on earth are you rambling on about?

          • Bazman
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

            What is there not to understand? Is it rocket science?

      • Disaffected
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

        I agree with the above. Cameron has still not stopped the Eurozone countries using the Eu institutions as he said he would as part of his veto. If not fully implemented then it cannot be a veto. He also knows QVM comes into place in Nov 2014 when the Lisbon Treaty is fully implemented- look at his claims on youtube why it should be opposed. He clearly states treaties will be negotiated and made without the consent of the nation. So what has he done about it? £ line whip to prevent an in/out EU referendum.

        Unlike JR I did not wear my rose tinted glasses to watch cameron’s speech. I thought it was empty and void of any real content, and that about sums up his performance in office to date. Still a lot of talk tomorrow rather than actual achievement to date.

        Reply: I did not wear rose tinted glasses. It was a good speech, with many sentiments and arguments I agree with. The issue, however, is will the deeds follow the words?

        • lifelogic
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

          It was not a good speech it was a carefully crafted speech saying nothing of any substance with pathetic appeals to emotion. He tried to make a few of the right noises for the sensible wing. I thought is was pathetic.

          Had he made the moral case strongly, for less government, less EU and less green religion before the election he would have won outright. If he cannot beat G Brown he cannot beat anyone. Especially now he has proved to be so useless and dishonest.

        • APL
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

          Disaffected: “If not fully implemented then it cannot be a veto.”

          There was no treaty to veto there was not even a draft treaty to veto, ergo Cameron did not veto a treaty.

          It was all scotch mist swirling around the EUrophile leader of an EUrophile party.

          Reply: There is a Treaty which the others are now signed up to, but thanks to the UK veto it is not an EU Treaty

          • APL
            Posted October 14, 2012 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

            JR: “There is a Treaty which the others are now signed up to, ”

            Definition of veto, to forbid someone else from doing a thing.

            Ergo, Cameron not only didn’t use a veto, but as the EUro states went ahead and did the thing anyway, he didn’t have a veto to use.

            Or I suppose you could say that Cameron forbade himself from doing a thing, but that would be an odd context to use the word.
            Used thus, perhaps to bamboozle people.

            Reply: for goodness sake, he used the UK veto, which both means the UK does not sign the Treaty and means the Treaty they did sign is not an EU Treaty

        • Disaffected
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:30 am | Permalink

          Come on JR, based on performance in office, no. How many U turns does it it? How many cast iron failures does it take before one realises that he is not up to the job? Look at the Europhile colleagues in cabinet, including the whip Mitchell, was he not a whip for Major as well?? cameron speak s with a forked tongue and I suspect you know it.

      • nicol sinclair
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

        As I have said in another post: this is the travesty of all travesties given the current circumstances…

    • Electro-Kevin
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

      Welfare reform cannot take place without control of mass immigration … unless we are going to see REAL poverty in this country and a race to the bottom on incomes.

      Abu Hamza’s extradition was not a success but a disaster. Eight long years of legal wrangling and lawyers getting rich off the taxpayer – and with many more prepared to chance their arm (‘scuse the pun) playing the UK legal system as he did. Unsurprising as his wife now has the chance to buy a discounted council house.

    • uanime5
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      Why would the financial industry in the UK move to Berlin or Frankfurt when the FTT will effect them if they’re in any EU country?

  4. David Jarman
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    He didn’t mention anything about fighting tyranny at home then?

  5. Old Albion
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    JR. As a result of Devolution, when Cameron talks about ‘education’ he talks only about education in England. I know he will never publicly state that, because he and the Conservative party are essentially anti-English. I hoped you were more honest and would recognise that fact.
    Any talk of controlling immigration is blathering nonsense. The (dis)United Kingdom handed control of immigration to the EU years ago. The EU has one policy. Open-door immigration into the (dis)United Kingdom and it will not alter that.
    If we wish to control immigration, we have to leave the EU. Cameron has ruled that out with his bluster about a new deal with EU. Another impossible fantasy.

  6. alan jutson
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:19 am | Permalink

    John, yes actions speak louder than words, a point I made a couple of days ago.

    The Camerons problem (any Prime ministers problem) which you highlight in the last 3 lines of your post is.

    ….”and now face a legal challenge from the EU over this fundamental point.”

    When will politicians learn.
    We do not govern our own Country any more.
    We are not allowed to.
    The EU has already taken control.

    Mr Cameron was light on the EU in his speech, yes he did veto a treaty, but it all still rolls on.

    If he wants to renegotiate, and I think that is a complete waste of time, then he needs to get some power behind him in the form of a referendum result in this term.

    Yes all the other suggestions are good, but why has it taken him nearly 3 years to find all of this out !
    Did he not know this was the case, was he that far out of touch that he did not have a clue !
    More years wasted, more money down the drain.

    • alan jutson
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:25 am | Permalink

      I see the home extension fiasco is unwinding, as more and more Councils refuse to back this stupid idea.

      We have enough illegally built shanty town developments at the bottom of gardens already, we do not want more.

      The thought that if someone cannot build an extension of 4 metres in length because of the simple cost of planning, but that they will build one of 8 that costs more, is simply daft.

      If you do not have money you cannot build anything, let alone one that is double the size of the original one you cannot afford.

      • Bob
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Permalink


        As Nigel Farage said:
        “the country is being run by a couple of college kids on work experience”.

        How true.

        • Bazman
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

          I see SKY have put up their line rental charges by 18% with call and services charges expected to rise The huge hike comes just months after Sky splashed out £2.28billion on Premier League football broadcasting rights, a deal that the firm say is unrelated to the rise, as they would. You can always cancel as you say Bob. The sooner all sport is on pay per view the better for all.

      • Bob
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

        I wonder if John Redwood stood for UKIP at the next election whether his voters would support him or the “A” lister who replaced him as Tory candidate?

        Reply: At the last election the voters of Wokingham preferred me as Conservative candidate by a very large margin compared to the UKIP candidate. In Buckingham they preferred a pro EU candidate to Mr Farage, leaving aside the large vote for Mr Bercow.

        • Bob
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

          @Mr Redwood
          That’s interesting.
          So the voters in Buckingham favour pro EU candidates, and in Wokingham it’s the opposite, is that what you’re saying?

          Reply: No, I am saying in both Buckingham and Wokingham they prefer Conservative candidates, and have not wanted to vote for UKIP in large numbers.

          • Bazman
            Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

            How many MP’s has UKIP got Bob? Maybe the voters do not understand and we should have some anyway?

          • Paul
            Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

            Interesting. So it appears JR admits he’s in the wrong party but sticks with these college kids to save his comfortable seat on the backbenches. Just like many others. I don’t know how people like JR and Bill Cash can sit there and repeat the same thing over and over again for 20+ years without changing anything. Eurosceptics have achieved nothing in parliament and never will. Eurosceptics who want complete withdrawal from the EU should get behind UKIP and help it grow instead of sitting on those green benches voting against further EU measures but always losing.

          • lifelogic
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 6:58 am | Permalink

            Lots of people just vote Tory out of habit, always have always will. They are hard to shift just as it is hard to compete with Coco-Cola and Pepsi they are simply a brand.

        • lifelogic
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 6:55 am | Permalink

          Why on earth would anyone vote for John Bercow? Is there something wrong with the people of Buckingham. The man is totally unfit to be in the house at all.

          Reply: He is a good MP, and good Speaker.

          • Bazman
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 11:04 am | Permalink

            He was also a Tory MP and so keeps the Tories in check. Many do not like him and he is respected by many labour MP’s.

      • zorro
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:12 am | Permalink

        Thank God, can you imagine what would have have happened in Slough and Reading. Beds in sheds on speed…..! But this is symptomatic of Cameron. He seems unable to ‘see the big picture’ and the consequences of his decisions. Thankfully, the councils are all too aware of what would have happened if this had got through.


    • Lord Blagger
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:21 am | Permalink

      There’s no we in it.

      It’s either the EU, or dictators in Westminster.

      You’re a pleb, you don’t get a say – remember.

      • sm
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

        No you plebs must do as we allow, there will be no meaningful plebicte on my watch. All you have to do is note the cast iron promise is being kept, just not with you but my beloved EU and Brussels.

        • sm
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

          Those damn plebs cant even spell. (note above)

          • zorro
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:19 am | Permalink

            ‘Plebiscite’……never mind, revel in your plebdom sm 🙂


    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

      “why has it taken him nearly 3 years to find all of this out !”

      Because, in spite of his education, he is thick.

      • APL
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

        nicol sinclair: “Because, in spite of his education, he is thick.”

        5-3=2 Nicol,

        Don’t underestimate the power of a looming General Election.

        The Tory Party is rubbing and scratching against any old stump to try to give the appearance of its spots changing.

      • zorro
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:22 am | Permalink

        Nicol, no when he said that he didn’t know what Magna Carta meant and forgot about the relative roles of the UK and USA in 1940, it was all part of his cunning plan to show that the Tory party was no longer nasty but just rather dim like those who had voted for it with their noses held in the vain hope that it would do something useful…….No we were not dim, just desperate!


  7. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    Actions not words are required. Having done little in the first half of this government it is difficult to see anything changing. But your leaders must be pleased to see energy prices still going up inexorably, food prices forecast to soar – the inflation plan is still on track. Spending by government is still rising and no doubt more taxation is in Osborne’s mind. Verdict on your government – good talkers (sometimes), incompetent and virtually no different from Labour in actions if not words.

  8. lifelogic
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    “Mr Cameron speaks well” – well perhaps he “delivers” well, but has nothing to deliver, all vacuous. He has no real positive action to point to, even after half of his term has already been wasted.

    I am not really interested in his late father’s feet, nor his family, even if it is delivered with an emotion stressed voice. I am interested in what he is actually going to do as PM, what he is paid for. Is he going to lead the nation or does he want to be another Jade Goody?

    He claimed the UK was leader in renewable energy, this is due entirely to his idiotic damaging subsidies for this pointless technology which are destroying the countryside for no benefit and a net loss of jobs for the country.

    He cannot do his job given the current absurd relationship with the EU but hardly mentioned this at all. This restricts him in nearly all the areas that he needs to address.

    He cannot deal with benefit immigration from the EU, and he has not even sorted out the banks the government owns. The EU and bank capital regulations are starving businesses of funds.

    Education is a long term project and will not help short term.

    Nothing positive on the NHS which cannot continue as it is and need huge reform and charging.

    The employee rights for shares looks like a silly gimmick for new employees only. Nothing sensible like Beecroft no easy hire and fire.

    Clearly he has no interest in growth at all, red tape has increased for example- the new paye reporting, the gender neutral insurance drivel, the enforced pensions and countless other areas of lunacy.

    Visitors to the UK during the Olympics were 5% down on last year – we will all be paying for this jumped up sports day for years to come with its legacy of little but a huge debt and pointless building in the wrong place.

    In short his administration is tax, borrow, waste and regulate to death, do as you are told by the EU and keep paying the feckless not to bother to work.

    Pathetic from start to finish.

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:53 am | Permalink


      Afghanistan to finish by the end of 2014, he says, so perhaps a hundred more pointless deaths for our army to suffer.

      Also he did not update us on the absurd loans to the IMF and the PIGIS how are our profits coming along as we were promised by the innumerate Mr Osborne.

      • nicol sinclair
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

        “so perhaps a hundred more pointless deaths for our army to suffer. ”

        B**llocks. We have already been ‘evicted’ 3 times from Afghanistan. Do you really want us to be evicted for the 4th time with tails between legs?

        • lifelogic
          Posted October 12, 2012 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

          We should never have been there at all with or without our tales.

          • zorro
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:15 am | Permalink

            And certainly not with the tall tales told to sell this mission to us…..


    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      I see that Chris Patten wants to launch an inquiry into BBC bias. He is however the very embodiment of the fake green, ever bigger state, ever more EU, anti real science and politically correct BBC values. James Delingpole’s blog is, as usual, spot on. Appointed by non other than the fake green, socialist Cameron of course.

      • zorro
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:17 am | Permalink

        Jack the Ripper to investigate the Whitechapel Murders……read all about it!


    • Bazman
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      You have yet to justify easy hire and fire for the country, business or the workforce, so this makes it propaganda and blind , right wing, fantasy as bad as any BBC nonsense. Beecroft can ram it and you can’t see it.

    • APL
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

      lifelogic: “this is due entirely to his idiotic damaging subsidies for this pointless technology which are destroying the countryside for no benefit”

      The benefit is to well connected relations, with their subsidized wind farms. Subsidized, that is by people who have to buy electricity.

    • zorro
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:14 am | Permalink

      Life logic, sometimes I wish you would just speak how you feel. I have kept a judicious silence on this post for the past 24 hours for the sake of my blood pressure 🙂


  9. Greg Tingey
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    Camoron is our generations Anthony Eden
    Looks & speaks well – everything he touches turns to rotting slime, but too late to reverse the damage …..

  10. merlin
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    What he didn’t say was more illuminating:

    1) He didn’t mention immigration once because there is nothing he can do about it because he is controlled by europe.

    2) He didn’t say that grammar school education is going to come back

    3) He didn’t say that we are going to have an IN/OUT referendum on leaving the EU.

    4) He didn’t say that he is going to improve the defence of the United Kingdom.

    Mr Cameron is a puppet of Europe and does not put Great Britain first, he is selling our great nation down the river. To put it simply people like myself want our country back and to be self governing once again that is why I support UKIP. One of Cameron’s great achievements drastically reducing the membership of the Conservative party.

    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

      “Mr Cameron is a puppet of Europe” Hear, hear!

  11. Mike Stallard
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    “It would be a good idea to allow for profit companies to operate, and to permit selection by academic ability as well as selection by the other currently approved criteria.”
    The DfE lays down its own criteria for admission to free schools. These, of course, are designed to give “the disadvantaged” a “level playing field. What they in fact do is place all the also rans in the very forefront of the school admissions programme. Of course, some of these people are truly deserving. Others are just lazy, disruptive bludgers who have to be carried along and who spend their time slowing up everyone else.
    What is the point of building more and more huge Comprehensives which do not work, which reward the idle, the disruptive and the feckless? Why not allow parents to choose their children’s school without permission from the DfE? Why not allow a free for all like they did way back in 1992 in Sweden?
    Once again, the Bureaucrats are running the system.

  12. JoolsB
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    When will the Tories come clean and stop pretending they speak for the UK. No they don’t. 80% of Scottish matters are decided in SCOTLAND, the same for Wales & Scotland to a lesser extent. Why can’t Cameron and our elected politicians say the word ENGLAND? When they talk of health, education, higher education, housing, local goverment, transport, police, fisheries, etc. etc. they know damn well they are talking about England but they insist on refering to ‘our country’ or ‘the country’ They are fooling no-one.

    The Scots don’t want anything to do with Cameron no matter how much he woos them and it’s time the Tories faced facts, i.e. post devolution, the union they are so desperate to defend no matter what cost to the English does not exist anymore. All they are doing by carrying on Labour’s anti-English discriminatory policies and their deliberate conflation of the UK and England is ensuring that ENGLAND will turn their back on them too, the ‘nation’ the Tories are happy to forget until election time that is. Shame on them.

    • uanime5
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      Well if there was an English Parliament the the UK parliament would lose most of its functions. To give you an idea of what an English Parliament would entail here’s an exert from the Scottish Parliament’s website. The devolved matters are what it can do, the reserved matter are what the UK Parliament can do in Scotland.

      Devolved matters include:

      agriculture, forestry and fisheries
      education and training
      health and social services
      law and order (including the licensing of air weapons)
      local government
      sport and the arts
      tourism and economic development
      transport (including drink-driving and speed limits).

      Reserved matters

      Reserved matters include:

      benefits and social security
      foreign policy
      trade and industry
      nuclear energy, oil, coal, gas and electricity
      consumer rights
      data protection
      the Constitution.

  13. backofanenvelope
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    I wish someone would tell me why we have to provide tax-payer funded benefits to non-EU foreign nationals? I have just come back from two weeks holiday in Cyprus. I paid £180 for travel insurance. Why not require all non-EU foreigners to do the same? They should get nothing from the tax payer except emergency medical care.

    • zorro
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:32 am | Permalink

      Using your example, as you went to Cyprus, why not insist on EU nationals having travel insurance too. I know that there is the E111 provision, but I do not leave these shores without travel insurance. I mean I have free travel insurance including health with my bank account, and you can pay a small amount extra to get worldwide insurance. There is no excuse for people or hospitals to be in doubt. But what do we get instead……some nonsense that NHS ‘managers (I use the term loosely, as they certainly do not mange expenditure) are insisting that everyone who turns up including foreign nationals must be enrolled and treated for free as it is their ‘human right’ and also the EU insisting on benefits too……This country’s have been infested with fifth columnist wreckers who must be out to bankrupt services!


      • zorro
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:44 am | Permalink

        Excuse my iPad it is sometimes dyslexic!!


  14. Leslie Singleton
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    We know Cameron has smooth salesman-like qualities but he has done and said so much that is plainly and simply antithetical to Toryism that he has lost all credibility–permanently in my case.

    Personally I think the idea of shares for giving up some of the OTT rights that employees have has a lot of potential. Any tax benefit is just vigorish. Anything to reduce the demented burden on employers. I was surprised at the immediate downbeat comments on this, including yours JR. I have not seen much detail and may have this all wrong but surely if the number of shares, and proportion of the company, offered is deemed large enough (especially relevant for small and growing companies of course) some people at least are going to like this idea and are hardly going to look the gift horse in the teeth and worry about how big the additional benefit they might get by reason of less or no tax being stolen down the line is going to be. Free shares and no tax on them sounds like a lot of bargaining power to me, not to mention the doubly extra incentive for the employee. Wonderful if more employees could carry some of the risks and thereby some of the rewards of ownership (Note I am not starry eyed about how many this would be suitable for). Brendan Barber’s comments were especially ridiculous and make one want to weep.

    We learn that the ridiculous EU now weeks to stop the WI recycling (Note recycling) glass jars for their jam. Ye Gods, that there should be expensive Jobs-not-worths sitting over there dreaming up this sort of baloney at our vast expense. Akin to Nero fiddling. And, JR, its no use asking for Eurosceptic unity as you did–what is needed is a vehicle for that unity to be channeled in to and at least there is a chance of that with UKIP. Hints certainly not from Cameron are just not going to do it.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      Oops–last para should have begun seeks not weeks and whilst at it apostrophe missing in it’s.

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      It is a gimmick, it only seems to be for new employees, the tax break is not significant for most. It is better than nothing but lets us see the detail. I am sure tribunals/courts will find some way of saying the rights were not legally given up in the right way or something similar.

      Just easy hire and fire for all is best in the end – not silly pathetic marginal gimmicks.

      • Bazman
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

        Not going into easy hire and fire with you as it is a religious belief without basis in your case. You are unable to defend your silly fantasy and will not reply to any points.

        • lifelogic
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:03 am | Permalink

          If you make any intelligent ones, that have any rational logic to them, then I am happy to respond.

          • Bazman
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 10:56 am | Permalink

            If you had a hire and fire system then by default you would need a more generous benefit system and you believe there should be less benefits, so as we already have some of the most lax labour laws in the western world and hire and fire is already avalible in the form of self employed, agencies and short term contracts its difficult to say further eroding rights is going to be productive. If you think employers should be able to sack woman for getting pregnant and for any disputes such as H&S, you are wrong. How putting insecurity of long term workers and I mean those with over two years employment is going to help the stability and confidence in a the economy and business is not clear and in fact could lead to lower demand and less jobs. If you seriously think that all employees can be intimidated into being ‘flexible’ you are wrong again. So do convincingly tell us the benefits of easy hire and fire or don’t preach your tired old propaganda rants of dragging the workforces rights back to the 1900’s depicted in Tressel’s book The Ragged Trousered philanthropists.
            Intelligent and rational enough for you? Lets hear you intelligent and rational reply.

          • Bazman
            Posted October 15, 2012 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

            Still waiting for your reply.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

        Dear Lifelogic, Let us indeed see the detail but you seem to have made up your mind (in the negative) before reading much at all. I think the idea might just work. I agree you may be right that some Court or other might opine that even if (of course) this were voluntary it is against their human rights or some such baloney but that should be held against the system that allows such nonsense not the scheme per se . I have not read or heard myself that it is for new employees only. If such be the case, then admittedly that would be a shame and hard to understand. The tax position is just potential icing on the cake. If someone gives you shares which you do not know will go up at all, rejoicing about no CGT on them down the line does not make all that much sense, though obviously it would be nice to have that possible future benefit. If the employer and employees can work something out more power to them I say. The reductio ad non absurdam is that in the ultimate the country would have ownership more widespread and employers would be more free to hire and let go thus decreasing unemployment. I am unable to see much lost if does not work.

        • lifelogic
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:08 am | Permalink

          It is better than nothing, but I suspect it will not amount to very much. People do not pay CGT until they have gains over £10,600 PA so the tax break is unlikely to affect anyone other than a few top earners/shareholder.

          Easy hire and fire for all is what is needed.

          • Bob
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

            If an employee decides to change their job they give their employer the required notice and off they go. No compensation to the employer.

          • uanime5
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

            According to the OECD the USA has the most lax labour laws in the OECD. Care to explain how easy hire and fire helps them.

    • JimF
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

      If these rights can be “traded” then perhaps they shouldn’t be there in the first place.

      Will these new employee shareholders also take directors’ financial and personal liabilities for their companies?
      Most owners have both equity and personal loans (unsecured) into their companies. Will these employee shareholders also be willing to risk lending to the company without security? Hundreds of thousands of £?
      I think this scheme would give a false impression to employees who will think that owning AND RUNNING a small limited company just means owning a few shares and divvying up the profits at year end

    • uanime5
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

      Since when has protection from unfair dismissal, the right to redundancy pays, and the right to request flexible working or time off for training been an OTT right?

      • lifelogic
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:44 am | Permalink

        It is hugely over the top and it negatively affects employees too. They have to work with often useless disinterested staff who cannot be got rid of, companies are less efficient and grow less and fewer jobs are available as a direct result. These right help no one but the few useless staff.

        • uanime5
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

          Yet more of your right wing fantasies. Nothing I mentioned would prevent an employer firing disinterested staff.

  15. oldtimer
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    As others have already said, actions speak louder than words. He rightly wants a private sector lead regeneration of the UK. The problem is that the conditions to achieve this are lacking – notably high taxation, high energy costs, high debt and high government spending. His words would carry greater conviction if the government actually cut costs that were not justified by the nation`s dire circumstances. After all, it was he said it was time to sink or swim.

  16. Graham
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    I find the whole decline in my motherland very soul destroying and ineffective self seeking politicians only continue to make it work.

    • Graham
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      should be worse.

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Indeed depressing it is.

  17. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    “I suspect we have to tell the EU we will not be implementing all their directives by 2015”

    I’m not in favour of the government breaking the law.

    It may start with some abstruse point of law and it may seem fussy to object, or it may start with some law which is clearly a bad law, but once you allow the government to start breaking the law you’re heading towards arbitrary rule rather than the rule of law.

    Parliament, the supreme legal authority for the UK, has passed Acts approving the EU treaties and incorporating them into our national constitutional law, and as one part of that it has ruled that Directives made under those treaties shall be legally binding on the UK government; if the government wishes to break the terms of any Directive then it should first turn to Parliament to authorise its disapplication.

    Going back to May 2006 that was the purpose of Bill Cash’s proposed New Clause 17 for the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill, which would have given Parliamentary approval for ministers to disapply EU laws.

    Somehow Bill Cash had secured official Tory party approval for his amendment, and the “Ayes” list for Division No 239 on it, here:

    included names such as Ancram, Davis, Duncan Smith, Fox, Grayling, Green, Hammond, Letwin, Lidington, Maude, May, Spelman, Willetts and even the Shadow Attorney-General Dominic Grieve.

    The debate was on the previous day, the relevant parts starting at Column 750 here:

    with John Redwood saying:

    “Finally, I turn to the amendments on the European issue tabled by my hon. Friend the Member for Stone (Mr. Cash). Nowadays, so much of our regulation comes from Brussels that we cannot exempt that from scrutiny and from our deregulatory urge. New clause 17 makes a good attempt to draw the House’s attention to that and to make Ministers understand that they cannot have a deregulation policy worth anything unless they are prepared to tackle quite a number of the regulatory burdens coming from Brussels. That would preferably be through renegotiation of those individual items, but it would be good to have a legislative back-up to make it crystal clear that if this House wishes to deregulate something, that should be law made here in the United Kingdom.”

    Followed by Bill Cash explaining the purpose and legal basis for his New Clause 17.

    Somehow I doubt that he could now get official Tory party support for such a proposal.

    Reply: Bill and I have always wished to re-establish Parliamentary authority over our law codes, and thought this a good mechanism to do so.

  18. Acorn
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Is it surprising that this Coalition government has got this far. Cameron conclusively proved Tuesday, that it has run out of ideas already and has used up a whole dictionary of hyperbole at the same time. Coalition economic knowledge is decades out of date; it does not understand the difference between a currency issuer and a currency user, the very fundamentals of a floating fiat currency money system. (Still, nobody on the R4 Today programme this morning did either.)

    When your prime minister gets auto hypnotised by TV cameras and tells you his proudest moment is giving a medal to a paralympian, you know you have got the wrong man in the job. You cannot enthuse an economic recovery with PR scripted tear jerkers and promoting vicarious grieving by “the community coming together” (and trampling over all the forensic evidence in the case of little April Jones).

    BTW. Yesterday, on another project, I noticed that there are now more Euro notes and coins in circulation around the planet, than there are US dollar notes and coins. I imagine, we are thirteen times more likely to find a US dollars worth of Euros down the back of the global sofa, that Pounds. Also, the Eurozone PCS system (payment; clearing and settlement system), run by the ECB but part of the BIS (Bank for International Settlement) global PCS, owes Germany about 750 billion Euro. Now, if the PIIGS don’t come up with the readies, the ECB has to “create” some new digital Euros to cover the debts. The Euro is now too big to flush!

    Anyway, I will have another go at this. Please read .
    To get a clue why the Coalition still thinks we are on the gold standard, along with the IMF.

  19. Sebastian Weetabix
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood, I think you have summed up Mr Cameron rather well. He “speaks well”. Indeed he does. The trouble is, he either does not follow through with any action at all, or does the opposite of what he says; consequently the Conservatives are going to lose the next general election.

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      Indeed the Conservatives are going to lose the next general election and the country is doomed to be a socialist, declining, undemocratic region of the evil, Nobel Peace Prize winning, EU.

      Thanks to cast iron Dave Cameron.

  20. James Blundell
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    John, I seem to have woken up in an alternate dimension where the EU is about to win the Nobel peace prize. Do you know any way of getting back to reality ?

    Reply: No, I have just commented on why that is a dreadful mistake

  21. English Pensioner
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    Just like Obama, almost anyone can make a good speech when they have the best speech writers available to draft it. But when it comes to answering questions, without a script, they are totally lost and just produce a load of waffle.
    Cameron should remember that “Actions speak louder than words” and so far we’ve had plenty of words but we’ve seen very little action.
    The only action so far has been from Michael Gove, but as for the rest, it’s all talk and more talk, along with irrelevancies like taxing plastic bags and gay marriage, neither of which will get the country out of the current mess.

    • zorro
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:42 am | Permalink

      His weakness in this area was shown in his under par performances in the GE debates.


  22. Richard1
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    I thought one of the most significant statements by George Osborne was that the state’s share of GDP would fall from 50% to 40% in this Parliament. I think its true to say that public sector employment is down about 1m and private sector employment up by 1m since 2010? If so I think thats progress. Lets focus on the big picture: the public sector needs to be financed by tax in the long run, not by ever-increased debt. Then the question is how much tax is consistent with a dynamic and competitive economy? As debated extensively on this site before, it seems we need to get tax/GDP below 30% for this (Keynes said 25%). The Coalition is moving (slowly) in the right direction.

    • uanime5
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

      So if the Government convinced 1 million state employees to set up their own companies and perform the same jobs they always did this would be progress because these jobs would be transformed from public sector jobs to private sector ones? Personally I can’t see how it makes any difference whether the public or private sector does the work.

      • zorro
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:44 am | Permalink

        Depending on the work, the taxpayer will be paying one way or another through government purchase of services…..


      • Richard1
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        That doesn’t surprise me. There is a very important difference: jobs exist in the private sector because they provide goods or services for which people want to pay. In the public sector jobs exist because the govt says they should, whether consumers of the services they provide are satisfied or not. That’s why the market is a more efficient allocator of resources than the state & market economies with smaller government sectors are more prosperous – its why people used to want to emigrate from East Germany to West Germany but never the other way.

        • uanime5
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

          So jobs exist in the rail, energy, and water industries because they provide goods or services for which people want to pay? I guess private companies don’t need any of those thing if there’s little or no competition.

          • Richard1
            Posted October 14, 2012 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

            You are confused. The state provides many services which people want, sometimes excellently – the services of John Redwood MP for example. But services such as rail water and energy, although they can be provided by state or quasi-state monopolies, would be much more efficiently provided in a competitive market where customers had a choice. That’s why it’s good news private sector employment is up and public sector employment down. Resources will. Be allocated more efficiently as a result and prosperity improved.

  23. Neil Craig
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    With gas prices, yet again, rising while they are dropping like a stone in America, the Tories are going to have ro do something other than the old standbt of blaming those who produce it and providinf “tax incentives” to an industry thet have been deliberately stifling. We all know that if the Tories actually wanted to end the recession they could have done so long ago by allowing the free market to operate in supplying energy.

  24. Bickers
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    Actions speak louder than words. The Conservatives will win the next election with a stomping majority if they do the following:
    1. cut renewables subsidies
    2. dramatic cut of EU/Whitehall red tape & tell EU/ECJ/ECHR that UK will only implement directives/rulings that are in UK’s national interest
    3. follow Canada’s example & cut public spending by minimum 20%
    4. cut quango’s (promised before last election)
    5. control immigration via points based system
    6. promise in explicit terms in/out referendum on EU by 2016
    7. in manifesto have commitment to introduce law to limit % of GDP government can legally spend/borrow
    8. cut down Parliament’s cost by 30%
    9. stop foreign aid (except emergency aid) until deficit 0%
    10. cut and simplify taxation
    11. stop paying salaries of union reps

    • Bob
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      “The Conservatives will win the next election…”

      You had me going for a minute!

    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

      I comment as follows:

      1. Agreed
      2. Agreed
      3. Agreed
      4. Agreed
      5. Agreed
      6. Agreed
      7. Agreed
      8. Agreed
      9. NOT AGREED
      10. Agreed
      11. Agreed

      We need the foreign aid to influence politically those countries that we support. India & China can well do without…

    • lifelogic
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      Indeed but Cameron is against all this and he has also lumbered the country with Clegg. So forget it, we might just as well have voted LABOUR for all the difference it has made.

  25. David Saunders
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Cameron may deliver a good speech but that is all he delivers. Touchy feeling comments about his family and lightweight emoting for hop ful change in the national fortunes is no substitute for the intellectual rigour neede to govern in critical times.

    No change, no chance,

    • nicol sinclair
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, go, hug a ‘hoodie’ or a f*****g huskie…

  26. Bert Young
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    You are right to point out that it is doubtful if any thing will become policy from DC’s speech . I hadn’t the patience or inclination to listen to it ; like you Dr.JR , there was something more pulling to attend . The award of the Nobel Peace Prize to the EU was hilarious ; the dissent that exists in the Eurozone , the unrest in Greece , Spain , Italy , Portugal and Cyprus , makes a mockery of the award . Comments about the outcome of the next election all focus on the importance of our relationship with Europe ; how this can become the centrepiece of the Conservative manifesto is up to the Backbenchers making an organised and forceful presence in the months ahead . I am sure you will play your part .

  27. Barbara Stevens
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    The truth is the Conservatives are completely out of touch with the people of this country, they have no idea how people are suffering, trying to survive with limited funds available to them. Even those with jobs, are really struggling, so how does Cameron think cutting benefits further will make people find work, when there is none to find. What they are doing is creating an underclass of unemployed who are being demonised by a government who do not have a mandate to rule. Yet, Cameron thinks it OK to ringfence foreign aid while we suffer here, and the people who are lucky to have work pay the bills from his borrowing to furnish his ideas. There is something fundementally wrong with this attitude and policy, and it will back fire on the Conservatives badly.
    M. Thatcher, not all bad I’ll admit, but her relentless closure of factories and rising unemployment put the Conservatives out of offfice for 18 years, that should be enough warning to remember. People still remember those dark days when families were divided, the country divided, and riots were on our streets in protests. I remember very well the divisions in the country and it was a time of hatred between citizens, now we have such a lot of foriegn imports the anger could reflect upon them with gusto. Times have changed, and times are more harder, and extreme behaviour and policies could just spark the fire again. The Conservatives may get what they wish for with a major fire once more.

    Reply: I seem to remember Mrs Thatcher won three elections in a row and her successor won a fourth for the Conservatives despite his own unhelpful contribution of the ERM.
    There were unwelcome factory closures under the Conservatives, just as there were all too many under Labour 1974-79 and again 1997-2010. None of these governments wanted the closures or closed the factories themselves. They were the result of various economic and other policies which have been much disputed over the years.

    • zorro
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply…..I seem to remember that some people were of the opinion that the unemployment was ‘a price worth paying…..’…..Lamontable, as I am sure you would agree…..


      Reply: Others of us did not think unemployment a price worth paying.

  28. Electro-Kevin
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Afghanistan – If we can’t send men to war without binding them up in red tape then we ought not to send them at all.

    Apropos the Royal Marines under arrest at the moment.

    23 of their number killed on that tour.

    • Electro-Kevin
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      Correction: 7 killed (23 from R4 news – possibly misheard)

  29. Bernard Juby
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    I totally agree with Merlin – above.
    Also “generous new tax regime for shale gas” is welcome …..”
    Is it really? Fracking (fracturing the substrata by chemicals under very high pressure ) is highly contentious because it poisons the water table since you cannont control the seepage of gas upwards. In the USA you can actually set fire to the water taps and people are falling ill as a result. The toxic chemicals pumped in at very high pressure are also a menace and earthquakes have already been noted.
    Thank God it has been benned now in France.

    • oldtimer
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

      If your reference to setting taps on fire is based on the Gaslands film clip (as broadcast by C4 and Sky), you should be aware that that has nothing to do with fracking. The phenomenon had been observed as long ago as 1936 (long before fracking was invented). The director of the film later admitted as much.

      Shale gas is found c20,000 feet below ground level, far below the water table. As for the “earthquakes”, tremores would be a more accurate description.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

        The eco-fanatics have no scruples about telling such lies; they convince themselves that it’s for a higher cause and justified.

      • uanime5
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

        The phenomenon wasn’t common until their was nearby fracking. Given that the fracking companies paid compensation to the people whose water was polluted it’s clear that they were responsible for it.

    • Epimenides
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 5:41 am | Permalink

      Bernard, what is your attitude to new reservoirs, for domestic water and hydro schemes, and mining for minerals and coal? They all cause earth tremors.

      Ban these activities also?

  30. Bill
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    Has anyone worked out what how many voters would be attracted by the various policies on offer? I assume someone somewhere has done some sums and worked out which policies will garner the largest number of votes. There seem to be few matters of principle here apart from, perhaps, the notion of refusing to make benefit payments higher than average salaries.

    Given that I do not believe Cameron is suicidal or stupid, he must believe the policies he is advocating and implementing are sufficient to ensure a second term.

    • Bob
      Posted October 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

      “…the notion of refusing to make benefit payments higher than average salaries.”

      Minimum wage would make more sense.

      • uanime5
        Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

        How would you calculate the benefits paid to those working for minimum wage?

        • Bob
          Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:23 am | Permalink

          I would issue them with a broom and a large wheelie bin to clear litter form the streets and pay them minimum wage.

          • uanime5
            Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

            So people working minimum wage jobs would be punished by being made to clean the streets for minimum wage? I can’t see that encouraging people to work.

  31. Wilko
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    It seems that David Cameron’s speech was so effective it has many of his sceptics ruffled.

  32. Charlie the Chump
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

    A late post I know but with today’s charging of 7 Royal Marines it is now time to leave immedialtely. These lads put their lives on the line and this is what we do to them.
    Enough is enough.

  33. Matthew
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Yes good speech – he usually does make a good speech. Just about delivering now. Would have liked a commitment to an EU referendum at some point.

    The chancellor’s idea of exchanging shares for rights seems half baked at best.

    If an employee is dismissed, they will end up owning a few shares in an unquoted company (As I understand it) these shares will probably be worthless. Or there will have to be a valuation process to apply to the shares – usually expensive and not worthwhile for small beer.

    • Bob
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:35 am | Permalink


      “Would have liked a commitment to an EU referendum at some point.”

      A cast iron commitment perhaps?

      That would be reassuring based on David Cameron’s history of keeping promises and sticking to his guns.

  34. Jon
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    The shares in exchange for some rights I don’t expect to see being enacted not least because of the ECHR and the EU. I would like to see it but just don’t think it will happen. If it did happen then I would expect to see it at a more senior level in large FTSE quoted companies as part of a means to exchange taxable remuneration to shares.

    I agree with the strivers speech but the meat in that is to choose more carefully who gets a house on benefits for example. This area needs still needs work as does the unions ability to call strikes. They need to deliver on the cuts and welfare reform.

  35. uanime5
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    Given that the current plans to get people been back to work have been forcing them to work for free (Mandatory Work Activity) and sending them on a pointless 2 year long course (Work Programme) I doubt that there will be any significant reforms to get people into work. It’s more likely that the Government will continue punish everyone who claims benefits, regardless of whether they work or not.

    Regarding the school reforms given that these don’t giving schools additional teachers so they can have small class sizes or additional money for new resources they’re unlikely to result in standards being improved to Eton levels. If anything the reduction in budgets, confused education policies, and drive to replace qualified teacher with whoever will do the job cheapest will result in standards dramatically falling.

    • Richard
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

      Ref your Para 1
      ts the private sector that creates jobs the Govt only gets in the way.
      Ref your Para 2
      Current education policies which are giving parents more choices can only be good and can only increase competition and improve standards as is being seen.

      • uanime5
        Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

        The Government schemes pay money to the private companies to help people get jobs. The Work Programme alone is predicted to cost £5 billion.

        Giving parent’s more choice isn’t a good thing if the parents don’t want any of the new choices. Many free schools have failed simply because parents didn’t want to send their children to them.

        Also additional competition doesn’t increase standards, it lowers them so the product or service can be delivered for a lower cost.

  36. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted October 13, 2012 at 12:42 am | Permalink

    I can recall, after one of my less successful days with the cricket ball, discoursing in the bar about some aspect of swing bowling. My long suffering captain overheard this and muttered under his breath “Oh, well, at least he TALKS a good game.”.

    Mr Cameron definitely talks a good game. However, he is going to be judged on the economic growth and deficit reduction achieved in FYR 2013/14 and the powers that he promises to recover from the EU. The jury is still out.

    • zorro
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:05 am | Permalink

      Note to Cast Elastic, the writing is on the wall……’Mene mene tekel upharsin’


  37. a-tracy
    Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    What is our obligation to the welfare of EU visitors that lose their temporary job and find themselves in England specifically/London without a job?

    Do we have to house them or put them in to B&b’s? How long for? Can we ask them to return to their Country of origin?

    Perhaps we should start a drive to encourage our under 25’s into jobs in other EU Countries where apprenticeships are plentiful like Germany, start intensive language training for those out of work for six months and set them free.

    • uanime5
      Posted October 13, 2012 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

      Six months of language training is unlikely to let someone compete with a native speaker of the language. Especially if they didn’t want to learn a new language or go abroad.

      • a-tracy
        Posted October 14, 2012 at 9:35 am | Permalink

        Doesn’t stop people with limited English obtaining work in the UK does it? I know a young man who has moved to Japan with a limited course in Japanese to teach English to students, it is amazing how quickly he picked up the rudiments and is now functioning in full time work.

        People limit themselves far to much in the UK, I wasn’t talking about moving for life but enhancing their cv, using their unemployed time on learning a new skill and if there is a lack of work over here opening the world out to them.

  38. The PrangWizard
    Posted October 13, 2012 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    I’ve joined this rather late. I thought it was a good speech, and I agreed with the gist of his message. But he must deliver more. Messrs Gove and Pickles seem to be heading in the right direction, but move faster please.
    But in the end for me, as with JoolsB and Old Albion, it is England which matters. There must be an English parliament. The speech ignored England and yet in many many aspects Cameron acts only in England. The Establishment ignores England, pretends it does not exist. They do not speak the word, they mention Britain when they mean England, and are thus deceiving all the people of England. They know it, it can’t go on, and more and more people know it too.

  39. David Langley
    Posted October 13, 2012 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    I think its time we all realised that no amount of moaning and wailing will get Cameron and gang on track to do what needs to be done in our not so humble opinions. Therefore until we can lever the lot out of office we will need to build up the power base of those that will do the right thing (sorry about that overworked phrase). All the local elections for councillors and police commissioners and everybody that will bring about the changes we need, depend on our votes for the one party that stands a chance of doing what the majority of us seem to want.
    It seems that the current three major parties have just about shot their bolt and either have the wrong policies or are failing to deliver on the sensible ones they have.

    I appreciate its a fearsome thing to try a new and untried leadership but what else is there? I have sat through the party conferences on the box and grew tired of the same old rhetoric. All speeches could have been given by the same party really, aspirational and trite. Hard to quibble about some of their ambitions but just so sad they are determined not to achieve them.

    I cannot and will not believe that we have to put up for ever with many of the crass decisions and the non decisions that are continually being made by this government. They are offensive to both logic and common sense.

    As we near the 100th anniversary of the Great War the old saying “Lions led by donkeys” comes to mind. I like to believe that the English lions will reassert themselves and take over from the asses that are currently making so much of a mess of our lives.

  • 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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