The John Newman Site
Sadly I am a compulsive letter writer, I have copied some of my Letters to the Daily Telegraph and various other institutions.
Some have been published and some not...............
There has been increasing speculation about a General Election in the near future. There are a few things that Mr Johnson and his cabinet need to do promptly before this occurs. Firstly, they must implement the recommended constituency boundary changes to even out the current imbalance, and clamp down heavily on postal voting which is a major source of corruption. Secondly, they must publish and publicize the nastier things in the Lisbon treaty and beyond that are being planned by the EU thereby countering project fear.
This may concentrate a few minds and rid us of an undemocratic result.
8th August 2019
The excellent letter from Sir Gerald Howarth (30th July) highlights the attitude of the Metropolitan Police. Assistant Commissioner Helen Ball stated that “any pay-out would have to come out of funds that might otherwise be used to support front-line policing”.
This need not be the case. The richly deserved compensation could be taken from the bloated pension funds of those responsible for the gross incompetence that led to the ruination of many lives.
30th July 2019
When we finally have a new Prime Minister he or she will be facing challenges that require fresh thinking, therefore one of their first tasks should be to rein the power and influence of Whitehall, given their role in the events leading to our current farcical situation.
Should policy advisors or negotiators be Civil Servants? I think not. Whitehall discipline should be brought into line with the enterprise sector. Departments responsible for major projects, or policy implementation must be made to be wholly accountable for their forecasts and commitments in terms of budget and time overruns and policies poorly implemented. For instance it appears that recent debacles at the DWP have gone unpunished.
Departmental Permanent Secretaries should be liable to instant dismissal without “compensation” in serious cases, not just a transfer of a lower grade official.
The new PM must remember that “Yes Prime Minister” was not a comedy series, but a Whitehall training video.
Dr Chris Staley (letters 9th April) is quite correct when castigating the BBC’s bias and political correctness. When tuning in to radio 4 following a couple of months abroad, my first thought was that I had accidentally found the Open University. Followed later by the impression that I was eavesdropping on a Guardian editorial conference.
9th April 2019
Nearly three years ago 421 MPs were given an instruction by their constituents to remove the UK form the EU. 17.4 million people gave Parliament that clear unambiguous instruction.
Now, nearly three years later I would like to ask them some questions.
On March 31st this year, will Parliament and the British Courts take precedence over the EU and the ECJ?
Will we be able to sign independent trade deals with our Commonwealth partners?
Will freedom of movement at our points of entry have stopped?
Will our fishing fleet have unrestricted access to catch fish in British waters, alone?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, is it not reasonable to describe our MPs (with a number of notable exceptions) as treacherous bigots?
That description can then also be applied to the unelected “meddlers”, Blair, Major, Hestletine, Carney, Whitehall et al.
13th March 2019
In the event that those people doing government impressions at Westminster force us Into a second Independence vote, it would be appropriate to remove some anomalies that affected the earlier vote.
Eligibility should be restricted to British citizens resident in UK for five years.
This would give the British population the say over the future of Britain, not tax exiles, retired emigrants or Irish citizens.
1st March 2019
Dear Mrs Leadsom.
Thank you for your letter received yesterday.
I have admired and agreed with the work you have done in the past towards British independence from the EU. However with regard to your precis of, and support for the “deal” cooked up by Whitehall and served by Mrs May, the kindest thing I can say is that there are some points that you have glossed over. The more realistic comment would be that it is a complete piece of fiction.
This letter is completely at odds with the comments I am reading in the press and on the internet, in fact, only the BBC seem halfway to agreeing with your summary.
If this “deal” is approved by Parliament, the deniers will have reversed the referendum result, let them hang it out for another two years and we will effectively remain under the EU jackboot. This is the result that the deniers, Whitehall, and possibly even Mrs May herself envisaged.
A competent PM would have had a WTO agreement drawn up and ready when Article 50 was triggered, given it to the EU with the message “this is what we are going to do and would welcome your comments and input. She however had no preparation for proper negotiation (how many Whitehall heads have rolled for that blunder?) and went cap in hand asking how we could leave to their satisfaction, hence the pigs breakfast she is so desperately trying to sell at the moment.
I appreciate that this action you propose is intended to salvage your career, but I can assure you that thanks to Alan Sked it will be abruptly ended at the next election unless you think about the effect on our country of eternal servitude to Brussels.
Reply to Andrea Leadsom MP to her letter confirming that she will back Mrs May's EU "deal".
29th November 2018
The only omission the otherwise perfect summing up of Boris Johnson’s article (November 12th) is the crucial role played by Sir Grima Wormtongue, a Whitehall employee.
12th November 2018
Britain undoubtedly leads the world of Motorsport, yet in recent years the Daily Telegraph appears to be in dire need of a motorsport correspondent. Other than GP reports, which do not cover the race, merely the highlights and off track events, there is virtually no national coverage whatsoever. Even some F1 coverage suspiciously seems to be copy/pasted press releases.
On Thursday two very significant events occurred in British sport. The horse racing event was well reported by you. The equally significant event in motorsport was not.Please can you employ a competent, knowledgeable motorsport reporter at you earliest convenience.
17th August 2018
Peter Burgess makes a valid point about national badges (letters 26th July). There seems to be a general reluctance by the metropolitan elite to display any form of national pride. For example, Presidents of America and their senior colleagues always wear a small enamel lapel badge featuring the Stars and Stripes.
The only member of our cabinet in my memory to wear such a badge was Jeremy Hunt who showed his proud allegiance to the NHS with an enamel lapel badge.
I suspect the rest of them are not that proud of their country.
26th July 2018
The Government have been promised a rough ride in the Commons this week over a series of amendments created by a group of failed politicians, cronies and rich businessmen in another place. Why?
421(compared to Blair’s 418 in 1997) constituencies voted for British independence in the referendum, which should give the Government a clear majority. Clearly a number of MPs think they have superior views to their constituents who elected and employ them.
I would hope that this newspaper will name and shame those who have defied their electorates will.
Telegraph 12th June 2018
Rod Liddle is absolutely correct in his piece Women, women everywhere (9th June). Perhaps the BBC should also take a long hard look at the six hours per week of retro-feminist man hating that is the appalling Woman’s Hour. A solution to this constant drivel could to split the airtime in half and introduce three hours per week of “Blokes Hour”.
I am certain that the admirable Mr Liddle would make the perfect host. Or is he already banned from dear old aunties house?
To the Spectator 9th June 2018.
I see from your chart that only 319 MPs will be voting against Corbyn’s Customs Bill amendment, (Corbyn “betraying his principles” with customs union plan 26th February). Given that 421 constituencies voted for British independence in the referendum, 102 MPs have ignored the instructions of their constituents and have sided with the Westminster and Whitehall bureaucrats.
Could this be described as bigotry?
26th February 2018
I have to wonder if the much heralded agreement with the EU is like one of Gordon Brown’s budgets, after a few weeks of reading the small print, the nasty truth emerges.
8th December 2017
It seems clear to all who are witnessing the charade in Brussels that the EU bureaucrats are so institutionalised that they neither know how to, or more probably don’t want to negotiate sensibly.
Mrs May is making both herself and our country look extremely foolish and spineless.
The solution, many believe, is for her to present the EU with a concise document of exactly what we are going to do and how we are going to leave their organisation. In short an instruction manual.
Having delivered the document she should let them get on with it, if they have any queries then she should allow them to make an appointment, when she is free from running our country, to discuss the matter.
This assumes of course that the Europhiles and Sir Humphrey Applebys of Whitehall feel that they are able to compile such a document. When calculating our remaining membership fees they must of course deduct the fraudulent loss of rebate negotiated by Blair for the reform of the CAP, which of course never happened.
This action does not mean walking away without a deal, in fact the opposite, we are merely telling them what course of action we are about to take, given that they have been unable to negotiate sensible terms we have decided them for ourselves. We cannot keep backsliding on the three issues that made the country vote to leave. Sovereignty, Borders and Money.
6th December 2017
Shaun White, (letters 30th November) rightly suggests that The ransom demanded by the EU is very similar to the bailout given by the British people to RBS. The solution is simple, give them the whole of RBS. Some of the Scots will be pleased as they will feel they still have a stake in the EU, and we will have given them the money they want.
30th November 2017
The rising influence of PC Snowflakes, the Corbynista, Remainiacs and much else, has now confirmed as an indigenous heterosexual Englishman I am a total stranger in my own country.
9th November 2017
Yet again we see NHS senior managers displaying ignorance and dismissiveness when the subject of improving hospital finances is raised. (NHS to charge overseas patients up to £15,000 October 24th).
They say it is unrealistic and time consuming to charge ineligible patients.
The answer is very simple to the rest of us, employ receptionists to identify and administer any payments that are due to the hospital. They would certainly each recoup the cost of their employment within a week. The hospitals receiving occupants of the Lagos shuttle would do very nicely thank you.
24th October 2017.
A new series of the News Quiz, the same predictable bunch of lefty metropolitans, some style themselves as “celebrities” while some more optimistically as “comedians”.
What they have in common with each other and the BBC is their total anger at losing the last four elections, notably the referendum. Nasty little jibes and larger insults are considered funny by themselves and the simpering audience. Any mention of leaving the EU is derided as being the work of Satan and worthy of barely concealed contempt.
Can we please have a little more balance to reflect the majority views of the country outside of the metropolitan bubbles.
Securing the services of Rod Liddle would be a good start, but then he is not part of the in crowd is he?
This to BBC R4 Feedback 9th Sept 2017
Charles Moore (Notes 8th July) tells of a creepy cold call. He is not alone, millions of us suffer in the same way. We have been on the TPS since just after its inception, and yet still receive a high number of unsolicited and possibly fraudulent calls.
Maybe there is an answer. If at present I dial 1471 I am told who my last caller was, if I then dial 3 I redial that caller.
Surely it is not beyond the wit of technical types to devise a system where I dial 1471 followed by my TPS PIN, which sends the number to a central database. When a number reaches a certain pre-determined level of complaint, that number is cancelled and the account closed. International calls can be barred.
I write this having just received an automated voice call from an Aldershot number; 01252 240417, telling me I have won £1000.
To the Spectator July 10th 2017
Recent correspondence concerning Laura Kuenssberg has reaffirmed my belief that one of the greatest phrases in the English language must be; “it’s not just me then!” Something I find myself saying more frequently nowadays.
24th June 2017
Listening to your item on pensions. two facts, (perhaps inconvenient) seem to have been omitted. Firstly, the state pension is not a benefit, it is an entitlement for which most of us have contributed handsomely for the whole of our working lives. Our return on this contribution is inadequate to say the least, given the amount paid in. Secondly, those of us who have saved for our retirement have, since Brown’s disaster, suffered a crippling loss of any interest on our savings, presumably to facilitate the extravagant borrowings of an ever increasingly “have it now, forget the consequences” generation.
Transcript of broadcast BBC Radio 4 Moneybox 26th April 2017
After 24 hours to settle down I must comment on Only Artists the “replacement” of Midweek. A desperately false cheerful female presenter plus a known oddity giving us a
load of tosh.
Presumably intended to attract the elusive metropolitan younger audience. It didn’t work, why oh why do the BBC want to alienate their established, core of listeners?
By the time the 2nd programme of the replacement was broadcast I had been reduced to Radio 2.
On a lighter note I hear that perhaps the only comedy that isn’t trying to sabotage our exit from the EU is surprisingly the venerable “Navy Lark” on Radio 4 Extra, the
scriptwriters had the incredible foresight to call Captain Povey’s harridan of a wife Remoaner. Ha!
Letter to BBC Feedback 6th April 2017
In common with many others I have over recent years become increasingly irritated by contributors on the BBC starting a reply to a question, or a sentence with “So”, inevitably reminding me of my schoolmistresses in the 1950s. You can therefore imagine my disappointment when I read the first word of Sarah Sands’ diary piece (March 25th). Printed with a large bold "S".
Equally disappointing was to discover that her next destination is the BBC R4 Today programme, which probably attracts the largest number of offenders.
Perhaps a quiet word in her ear?
Published in The Spectator April 1st 2017
On this most important of days surely it is time for the BBC, remnants of the Labour and Liberal democrat parties, ex-pat business people such as Mr Branson and the legion of metropolitan “commentators” to stop whingeing and back the British people of the 421parliamentry constituencies that voted to make this day happen.With regard to the rag tag & bobtails who style themselves as Entertainers or Comedians, back our country or (hopefully), emigrate.
29th march 2017
I see that a committee is examining ways to reduce the number of members in the House of Lords.Perhaps I could offer a suggestion. Firstly Lords should be divided into two groups, Working and Titular. Then 333 Sitting Lords should be appointed on party proportionally, based on the result of the last General Election. Of these 333 10% must be cross benchers to represent the people who did not exercise their duty to vote. I hope this suggestion will give the committee a starting point.
21st December 2016
Andrew Papworth (letters 30th November) joins a number of people who question the legitimacy of a majority leave vote in the referendum. I wonder if he made the same comments when Mr Blair was elected with a “landslide” victory of 418 seats in Parliament.Had the referendum vote been counted on a constituency basis the number of “leave” seats would have been 421.
30th November 2016
I find the demands of Mr Clegg, Mr Milliband and others for Parliament to debate every aspect of our EU negotiations somewhat hypocritical. They have been perfectly happy to devolve the sovereign powers of the British Parliament to Brussels and Strasbourg for decades.Do they not realize that in debating these matters in detail and in advance they will reveal our stance and proposals to an increasingly hostile and crumbling EU?
12th October 2016
Listening to the deluded comments made by Owen Smith concerning our exit from the EU he might like to consider the following revealed by The Spectator. Had the referendum vote been counted on a constituency basis as in a general election, Leave would have gained 421 seats. This compares to Tony Blair’s “landslide” victory which yielded 418 seats. Would he have asked the electorate to think again about that result? Although, if he is so keen on absolute proportional representation, at the last general election UKIP would have returned with 82 seats, no doubt equally outraging him.
24th August 2016
I was most relieved to read Lord Blencathra’s comments about Remoaners and Remainiacs (letters 2nd August). I have also been most concerned by this. What he didn’t mention was that at the top of the offenders’ list is the BBC, who continually dredge up some obscure report, or even more obscure commentator to explain why the voters were wrong and that we should remain within the EU.
2nd August 2016
Why should Mrs May go to appease Ms Sturgeon and Scotland, (population 5.3m) rather than reassuring the population of the west Midlands, (population 5.6m) that their future in engineering free of the EU is bright? Yet again I fear that the Scottish tail is trying to wag the British dog.
18th July 2016
I observed the EU and it’s machinations for many years before deciding to vote to leave that project. My reasons for leaving boiled down to three things for the good of our country.In order of importance. To regain the sovereignty of Westminster, not to become a faceless member of the USE and to be able to make and implement our own decisions and laws.To stop pouring billions of taxpayers pounds into the inefficient, wasteful and Bureaucratic Brussels project.To have control over who comes into our country. Doctors, Nurses, Scientists from wherever in the World, yes. Unemployed eastern European labourers, no. Families of settled but unemployed eastern European labourers, no.
Simply put, sovereignty, money and control over immigration.
I am sure that most who voted to leave did so for those three reasons in whatever order of importance.
There must be a word of caution to our next Prime Minister that to cross any of these three absolute red lines would be an affront to democracy and result in considerable nationwide anger and resentment.To the bleeding heart letter writers of late bemoaning the result, mainly metropolitan, many elite and some politicians I say this. The country has decided. Live with it. Westminster and Whitehall must get on with the task, quickly and efficiently following the instructions given in a referendum of the people.
30th June 2016
The remainders have made much play on the subject of the £350 million per week paid to the EU. The referendum is essentially about our future. Mr Blair relinquished a large chunk of the rebate obtained by Lady Thatcher, who is to say that Mr Cameron will not be obliged to do the same in the near future. Similarly the EU will almost certainly increase our “contribution” to pay for some of their policies and projects. Therefore looking at the current gross cost is quite fair. They also seem incapable of recognizing that the number of measures outlined by the leave campaign, such as VAT on domestic fuel and spending on the NHS will become possible after the UK leaves the EU, not all of them will be utilised, to add them up and claim an unrealistic total is simplistic in the extreme.
1st June 2016
Further to the discussion on the pros and cons of removing children from school for their holidays, may I offer another equally selfish opinion that I am sure is held by a great many people. Might those advocates of term time holidays spare a thought for those of us who deliberately take our holidays at this time. The reason? To avoid other peoples’ badly behaved, out of control, screaming children ruining our holiday.
23rd May 2016.
Within the context of the EU referendum we have all studiously avoided mentioning the second World War, however Mr Obama has done so and I feel further comment is required.
When Germany swept through Europe at the beginning of the war France, Belgium, Holland and the others were promptly invaded and capitulated. Part of France then collaborated with the invaders. If we vote to remain in the EU we will be in a similar position now and in the future as though we had followed them at the beginning of the Battle of Britain.
When the EU inevitably becomes the USE we will be ruled by Germany with the aid of their collaborators France, our sovereignty removed, our borders and population level controlled by a foreign power. In effect all Britain’s effort and sacrifice during World War Two will become a total waste.
22nd April 2016
I am struggling to imagine a retired American sitting in his garden and having a eureka moment. “Gosh, those silly British are trying to leave the European Union, I must immediately arrange a meeting with seven other elderly men who used to have some influence in the US and write an open letter together”.This is about as probable as their having any real concern for the British and our economy. Yes men to the end I should think.
20th April 2016
The Government’s taxpayer funded leaflet and the latest “report” from the Treasury did not really convey any facts to the reader, merely supposition and a continuation of Project Fear. What I and many others require is fact. Perhaps a good start would be to know the EU’s plans for our nation in the event that we vote to stay within their governance. I am certain that there are a number of treats in store for us, some of which like the TTIP agreement, are at present shrouded in secrecy. I am equally certain that there is somebody with the right connections and this knowledge who is willing to divulge all. I hope they will take up my challenge and provide us with the hard information we all require.
April 18th 2016
There have been a wide range of export figures bandied about in the EU debate. Do these figures take into account the Rotterdam factor? This is where a considerable amount of double counting occurs because all freight arriving at Rotterdam, the largest container port in Europe, is counted as an EU export. Whereas a large proportion of this freight is merely on route to a non EU country.
March 4th 2016
There are three major concerns about the letter from business leaders in yesterday’s edition.Firstly the letter was allegedly written at public expense by a Downing Street aid and no doubt Mr Cameron was instrumental in “persuading” the signatories to agree.Secondly these were the same companies that spread scare stories warning of the financial catastrophe that would result if we did not join the Euro.Thirdly I would perhaps give them more credence if I could be certain that all of them pay corporation tax in the UK at the same rate and with the same level of HMRC scrutiny as the millions of sole traders and small companies in this country.
23rd February 2016
I have read your advertisement for writers of letters to the Editor with some trepidation. As a mere rural cynic and not a member of the House of Lords, a senior clergyman, a leading scholar, a retired senior military officer or the head of a national charity or special interest group, I feel I shall never get a look in.
19th February 2016 (Not Published).
This posted to Facebook.
Some of us have been warning that elements of Islam have declared a worldwide Caliphate (war), they have established a significant fifth column in virtually every city and large town in Europe. The vanguard of the Caliphate are pouring through Europe's borders in unprecedented numbers, the deadly forces will follow. What action is to be taken must be the responsibility of national Government, but their first action must be to pass legislation to allow a shoot to kill policy by the Military and the Police, who at the moment are fighting with one hand tied behind their backs and are at risk of prosecution in forty odd years time as one poor ex-soldier will testify.
14th November 2015
Following events in Paris surely the Government must now recognise that Islam has declared a worldwide Caliphate. One of their first actions must be to enshrine in law the right of the Military and Police to shoot to kill, without the fear of being prosecuted in forty odd years time as has one unfortunate soldier.
14th November 2015
This posted to Facebook.
The Saudi citizen Shaker Aamer has arrived in Britain from prison at Guantanamo Bay much to the delight of the comrades at the BBC and the Guardian. That he should land at Biggin Hill, the location for one of our country’s greatest battles against tyranny and religious oppression has an irony that should not be lost on us. This man is a Saudi citizen who by dint of marrying the possessor of a British passport was allowed to reside in our country. He then moved with his family to a terrorist stronghold in Kabul Afghanistan. The story he gave was that he was engaged in charitable work, Hmmm. He was then handed over to the Americans as a terrorist suspect and spent many years in prison. There are many questions to be answered here. Firstly, who funded this so called “charity work”? Secondly when his wife and family returned to Britain, who funded her swanning around doing Dalek impressions whilst he was in prison? Who paid for a private jet to fly him to Biggin Hill, not Saudi Arabia and why? A similar question must be asked about his treatment at a top private London clinic and the possibility that we, the British taxpayer should be giving a reported one million pounds in “compensation” to someone who is not British, but an extremely disturbing Saudi national.
1st November 2015
I have not seen any reference in the media to the illegal migrant families promised new accommodation by Mr Geldof and a host of other luvvies. Under normal luvvie practice this would have been headline news. Have they cooled to the idea?
October 28th 2015
This to the Times and BBC Feedback.
Again I have to highlight the apparent bias of the Today programme.This week is the annual conference of the SNP. The Today programme has a representative in Aberdeen for this event and there was considerable coverage of the policies, achievements, aims and aspirations of the SNP, which will continue for a second day.The Today programme will of course be aware that Scotland is only 10% of the population, but more importantly that the SNP were only fifth in the number of votes received in the general election.When UKIP held their conference in Doncaster, the BBC gave them a sketchy coverage, mainly concerned about a silly woman’s tattoo. UKIP were third in the votes cast in the general election and first in the previous European election.I appreciate that the Today programme will use the excuse of Westminster seats, but due to the previous Scottish Labour government this is no reflection of the votes cast, or of party support.
15th October 2015
This to the BBC PM Programme.
The party conference season is upon us. The Liberals who received the fourth largest number of votes in the general election have just held theirs. You, and the rest of the BBC gave them a good amount of coverage and generous , if not over generous reports on their aspirations and speeches. The Labour party, who received the second highest number of votes are about to have theirs, you have continuously covered every detail of their activities since the election due to their leadership problems. No doubt you will also give their conference similar if not greater coverage than the Liberals. Will you be giving the same proportionate coverage to the Conservatives and UKIP who received the greatest and third largest number of votes in the general election and came first and second in the previous national election? Many will look upon and monitor this coverage as an indicator of your impartiality in the forthcoming EU referendum.
Answers in a broadcast please.
23rd September 2015
For years many Englishmen have held the same views on the subject of anthems at sporting events as Mr Frame (a Scot). It seems incongruous that England should in effect be urging on their opponents in a home nations match by singing God Save The Queen, when other British teams have their own rallying song. Perhaps a question should be added to the EU referendum ballot form giving a choice between Jerusalem and Land of Hope and Glory.
22nd September 2015
The BBC recently referred to UKIP as a party of the “far right”. With the election of Mr Corbyn and Mr Watson as leaders of the Labour party how will the BBC now describe them?
12th September 2015
Ms Sturgeon has reneged on her party’s promise not to vote on English issues, citing her contempt of the slender government majority in Parliament. Perhaps if the government held a vote on the abolition of the Barnett formula for Scotland she might discover just how strong a small majority can be, and of English opposition to tails wagging dogs.
14th July 2015
It has been reported that the UCL will be having discussions about the future of Sir Tim Hunt after he committed the sin of making a poor joke. Will they also consider the future of Bahar Mustafa who was publicly misandrist and racist by banning indigenous white males from one of her silly little meetings? What punishment has already been meted out to her? Or is sex discrimination a one way street at UCL?
To the Times 21st June 2015
Over the last few days I have received four unsolicited telephone calls from a company called A Shade Greener. This despite my telling them in no uncertain terms that I am registered with the Telephone Preference Service (for many years).
I thought that a new law came in to force earlier this year to prevent such harassment, are they acting illegally?
Perhaps I should bombard their M.D. with nuisance calls as he is about to sit down to Sunday lunch with his family.
11th June 2015
Yet again Ms Sturgeon of the SNP has come up with a list of demands. This time for the UK/EU referendum. She exhibits highly hypocritical behaviour, given that the rest of the UK were not allowed any say whatsoever in her (failed) referendum.
With only 10% of the population and a meagre 4.7% of the vote at the last general election her demands are breathtakingly arrogant.
On behalf of the vast majority of UK voters Mr Cameron must ignore this posturing.
25th May 2015
The opening salvos in the forthcoming EU referendum are starting to be fired. The CBI being the first to light the touchpaper. During the Scottish referendum there were insinuations that the BBC were biased in favour of the No campaign.
I would suggest that in order to pre-empt any repetition of such allegations that the BBC publish a comprehensive statement of interests, in the same way as MPs have to comply with the register of interests at Westminster.
For instance, what money do they receive from the EU? What valuable contracts do they have that they think might be at risk? There are I am sure a host of questions that need to be answered, so that the corporation can reassure the electorate that they are avoiding any bias. Possibly the electorate may have to evaluate the position of the BBC in the light of revelations within such a statement.
This referendum will be infinitely more important to the nation than the Scottish event and we, the British people, do not want any suggestion that we are being led up the garden path by a mouthpiece of the state as we were by Harold Wilson on the last occasion.
22nd May 2015
Mr Cameron has given Sturgeon powers of taxation and spending. Does this also mean the ending of the Barnett formula subsidy? If (and when) their overspending results in a large amount of debt, will the Westminster Parliament/Bank of England be forced to bail them out?
If either of these answers are of unfair disadvantage to the English taxpayer they are unacceptable. Mr Cameron would do well to remember this.
16th June 2015
I have been taking the Daily Telegraph for 43 years on the premise that I was reading a serious centre right newspaper. Today’s front page was the last straw.
Of the six items only one could be considered suitable. The lead article featuring yet another health survey scare story, no doubt copy/pasted by some intern, is totally irrelevant. The silly young lady with the suitably pained expression could do well to wonder if the whistlers were doing so out of sympathy. Then trivia about banks and holidays and finally a piece of news (Nepal) and the genius that is Matt.
Oh and I nearly forgot, the daily extract from the Tory press release (no doubt copy/pasted).
I shall now break my ban on spending any money with a Murdoch enterprise by taking the Times on the basis that a dodgy Murdoch is preferable to two sinister Barclays.
I doubt that you will print this in the paper, but I’m sure Mr Hollingshead might put it in his end of season book.
28th April 2015 (Published in Iain Hollingshead's book "Has the World Gone Completely Mad?" September 2015)
This morning I have been looking at the YouGov election vote share site.
According to their figures UKIP have 13% of the vote which will yield 7 seats at Westminster. The Lib Dems have 10% yielding 27 seats and finally the SNP are included in the 6% of “other” yet will get 56 seats.
This is hardly democracy in action.
Can someone please explain why there is such a discrepancy between votes and seats? Is this a result of Clegg refusing to allow constituency boundary changes?
8th April 2015 (Published) Below is a postscript showing how many extra seats some parties would lose without first past the post and how many the others really deserved:
This to the Sunday Times. Sir.
May I extend my thanks to Camilla Long for her article (Saucy Alex or Nigel the Hernia March 29th).
It was brave of this descendant of the Duke of Newcastle and graduate of Corpus Christi Oxford to venture beyond the metropolitan bubble and dirty her shoes in Kent (of all places).
Her sneering attitude to local UKIP supporters and the area have been a tremendous boost to support for UKIP. This is because of something that is clearly beyond her; she is the embodiment of everything that many people in the country dislike and will vote against.
Oh, and by the way darling, insulting a significant proportion of your readership does not bode well for any job retention points when working in journalism.
31st March 2015
I can’t help comparing the figures for required new house building quoted by Labour, with the net migration figures quoted by Nigel Farage in today’s Telegraph. It appears that there is a simple answer contained within these two statistics.
4th March 2015
I had to read the article by Vidar Helgesen (“Britain needs to be at the heart of Europe”) several times to be sure I wasn’t dreaming. The whole piece was either furthering cause of the EU or ensuring Norwegian development. The mention of TTIP was particularly (and worryingly) dismissive of the UK. Maybe a UK exit from the EU would not benefit Norway and others, but it is time for us to look to our own prosperity, not to be subsidising others.
The message appeared to be “think not what Europe will do to you, but what you must do for Europe”.
24th February 2015
On the eve of the Scottish referendum, following months of intense campaigning, three unwise “leaders” travelled north bearing inappropriate gifts.
Subsequent to their backing and bribery of the wrong side, England now faces a situation that makes the west Lothian question seem trivial.
Sturgeon, the extreme hard left Scottish leader has unveiled her absurd spending plans for the UK, Milliband will of course join forces with her after the election just to be in power, (like Clegg did), which will mean that Britain will be effectively ruled by a politically toxic 10% of the population.
What action Cameron can take on this other than a real English votes for English laws bill I don’t know, but action is certainly required by the English electorate.
What I do know is the three unwise men have delivered to the English a disastrous unintended consequence, to which we will not be prepared to submit.
It will be worth remembering in May that a vote for Milliband is a vote for Sturgeon and Salmond.
11th February 2015
Mr Milliband boasts that his job role is an audition for the part of Prime Minister. Well, thanks Ed, don’t ring us………..
13th November 2013 (Published)
I am astounded by the lack of respect shown by the hard left for democracy. A Ms Sturgeon has suggested that in the EU referendum the majorities in the Celtic fringe be counted separately. I would remind her that in the Scottish referendum we English were denied a vote on their independence and (possibly as a result) she lost. Scotland therefore remains part of the UK and will vote as a full member. Mr Clegg meanwhile has scuppered the bill to enable an EU referendum, in his case it seems purely that he wishes to rule (but not for long) the electorate, not to represent them. I for one am tiring of tails wagging dogs.
30th October 2014
Boris Johnson wrote what he considered to be a heart rending plea to UKIP voters to return to the Tory fold. (Comment September 29th). The suggestion was that they would be responsible for a Labour victory next May by dividing the centre right vote. It is not they who will be responsible, but David Cameron for repeatedly reneging on promises of a European referendum, or perhaps for uttering terminological inexactitudes. In the European elections his party came third, the electorate giving a clear signal that they require a referendum. If he stood by his commitments before the May general election the UKIP problem would by and large go away. If Milliband and Clegg block this they will be exposed as the Stalinists they truly are.
Mr Cameron must realize that we, the electorate, employ him to represent us, not rule us.
30th September 2014
You asked on your programme tonight for questions concerning Scottish independence.
As one of the 90% of British citizens without a say in the outcome of this vote, but will be drastically affected by it, I would like two clarifications and assurances. Firstly, can we be assured that in the event of a yes vote all Scottish MPs in Westminster will stand down to prevent them causing more damage in the interim.
Secondly, irrespective of the outcome, and given the promise of further tax raising and spending powers to Edinburgh, will all excessive subsidies to pay for Scottish social profligacy (the Barnett formula Etc.) be stopped immediately?
As an Englishman I am tired of all the fuss over which I have no input and of paying over the odds for the privilege.
Letter to BBC PM programme. Broadcast 9th September 2014
So Mr Balls has been fined £900 for not stopping after a car crash. This must be a second offence as he did the same with the British economy.
5th August 2014 (Published)
Yet again Mr Cameron is missing the point (perhaps deliberately) on Europe and getting side-tracked. Immigration and universal benefits are not the main concern. Sovereignty is the overwhelming issue. Regain our sovereignty and we can deal with all other challenges easily and by ourselves. Of course Mr Cameron can easily achieve a return of self-governance by holding an in out referendum before the next election, with the intended consequence of removing the UKIP threat to his continued tenancy of Number 10.
30th July 2014 (Published)
Am I correct in assuming that in the event of a yes vote in September that all MPs representing Scottish constituencies in Westminster will immediately apply for the Chiltern Hundreds?
10th July 2014
All across Europe the people have spoken. The worm has turned. The only course of action open to a UK Prime Minister now is to call an EU referendum now, or at least before the general election. This would shoot the UKIP fox that is now rampant in Westminster. Assuming of course that the Prime Minister in question is an honourable gentleman. Somehow I don't think that has been bred into the Cameron genes.
27th May 2014
Perhaps the leaders of the so called established parties have missed the point with UKIP, despite all of their smearing and jibes the party will still do exceptionally well. The reason? Unlike the others Mr Farage & Co will represent their voters, not rule them.
20th May 2014
Two party political broadcasts on consecutive evenings on television. One Liberal and one Labour. Both were filled with innuendo, falsehoods, terminological inexactitudes and scaremongering. The Labour broadcast surely sank to new depths that can only be the result of an American influence. However, as this effort bore all the hallmarks of BBC writing and production perhaps there will be a slight reduction to expenditure of the licence fee.
7th May 2014
The BBC have been spending hours all day reporting that someone called Moyes has
been sacked. They obviously consider this earth shattering news.
22nd April 2004
Will the 90% of the population who had no part in the inception of the Scottish independence referendum, and will certainly have no influence on the outcome, continue to be inundated with related media coverage until September? If this is to be the case, could the broadcast media employ subtitles and voiceovers for the less intelligible pundits and politicians from that country?
18th March 2014
I read in your article today your comments on the feelings of the Scots, as an indigenous older Englishman (the most despised being in modern Britain) perhaps you might enjoy an insight into my (and everyone else’s I know) feelings.
Since the last Scottish Labour government buggered my country, my life savings and my pension, I think the sooner they sod off the better.
16th February 2014 (This to Rod Liddle of the Sunday Times)
I have read that there is no link between our current exceptional weather and climate change. I would wager that those whose glittering careers and large salaries depend upon climate change are working very hard on contriving one.
11th February 2014
I understand that the comrades at the BBC are being monitored over concerns about their political impartiality. As a regular listener to Radio 4 I would appreciate the availability of a direct email address to which listeners could send dates and times for review. This has recently become more desirable following their attacks on certain elements of the press.
October 21st 2013
Perhaps the good citizens of Balcombe will reinforce their views on energy supply in a more practical way by cutting off their gas supply in November. If they really are rural and have no gas supply, then stop any heating oil deliveries. The people of London, who are migrating to Sussex in droves to support their cause, will of course wholeheartedly support the compulsory construction of large wind farms in Hyde and Richmond Parks.
August 10th 2013 (fracking demo)
Further evidence of left wing bias at the BBC has become evident in the last few weeks. Radio 4 has been broadcasting a series of four programmes called reflections, which are interviews with senior politicians from the past. Three of the four, Shirley Williams, Jack Straw and Neil Kinnock are firmly of the left. Only Lord Tebbit was not. Employ an overly sympathetic interviewer and you have the perfect formula for BBC impartiality.
August 1st 2013
Mr Cameron has today announced plans for compulsory internet filtering. Will he give a cast iron guarantee that those with no need for child friendly filtering and who opt not to have child restrictions on their computers, will not subsequently be added to some secret list of "possibles", or bombarded with adverts for dodgy dating sites?
22nd July 2013
After much harrumphing the BBC have appointed a woman presenter for the Today programme. Can we hope that unlike other female radio 4 current affairs presenters she will not talk loudly, at, over and through her victims? Will she also try not to constantly parody John Humphrys? Only time will tell.
17th July 2013
Finally Abu Qatada has gone, unfortunately his retinue remain, presumably at the British taxpayers expense. Will Mrs May now go immediately to the European Court of Human Rights, to demand on behalf of the British people that his retinue have an absolute right to family life and should join him immediately?
7th July 2013
Amid more revelations concerning the adulteration of certain meat products, one question remains unanswered. What is happening to the tons of food “withdrawn from sale”? A very large number of people are unconcerned if their lasagne contains a miniscule trace, or even a minimal trace of horse, pig or other meat. These items should be put on sale at very reduced prices with a large sticker revealing other possible ingredients. If animals have been killed to provide food which is then destroyed, that is an act of indefensible immorality.
March 17th 2013 (Published)
Lord Neuberger complains that judges cannot fight back over the deportation of foreign criminals (Article March 5th). The only chance that we, the British public (and his employers) have is at elections, as demonstrated at Eastliegh. Perhaps Mrs May can remove Lord Neuberger from the loop by deporting these criminals at the sentencing stage, without recourse to “human rights” appeals, so that they serve their sentence at the expense of their own country rather than ours. Their return to our country would of course be forbidden.
Published March 6th 2013
The Prime Minister and the Culture Secretary have said that churches will not be forced to perform homosexual “marriages”. We should not believe them. We have witnessed the experiences of some B&B owners opposed to homosexuals sharing a bed in accommodation which is also their own home. How long will it be before some hapless Vicar is dragged through the courts by militant homosexuals who are taking advantage of human rights laws over which our government has no control?
Sir.Should anyone think that government regulation of the press is appropriate, they should consider the consequences under Brown, Blair, Balls, or anybody called Milliband.
In the case of Abu Qatada perhaps the “media” could regain a little public respect. Rather than his surveillance being funded from the public purse, the media could take on the task. They do have considerable experience in this area and undoubtedly they are capable of monitoring his every movement and communication. They could even use him as a training exercise for new recruits. After a few months of the “celebrity treatment” and hacks on the doorstep for 24 hours a day, I am sure this vile animal will want to leave of its own free will.
2012 (after being allowed to stay again).
Mr Cameron has been reported saying that a referendum on Europe should be whether or how to reconfigure our relationship with Europe.
This reeks of fudge. If a referendum were held on these terms, undoubtedly the outcome would be a vote to change. But the result would be procrastination by politicians and Whitehall eurocrats, ending in an extension of European rule.
Ten years on nothing will have changed.
The question must be “in” or “out” of The EU, as simple as that. If the vote is out then we stop the direct debit to the EU and regain our national sovereignty.
There will have to be discussions to be had about some aspects of our relationship with our former partners, Whitehall must be told to conclude these without delay and to implement our own laws, rather than embellishing the massive output from Brussels and Strasbourg.
If Mr Cameron concedes that this is the wish of a large majority of voters in the United Kingdom and holds a referendum well before the next election, he stands a very good chance of remaining our tenant in Downing Street.
David Cameron must ensure that England is included in any referendum on Scottish independence.
The Scottish Labour party and Scottish banks have been instrumental in bringing our country to its knees. We therefore deserve the opportunity to vote Scotland out of the Union.
With regard to their share of the national debt and the cost of infrastructure there is already a method of calculation known as the Barnett Formula. I believe the Scots have benefitted from this arrangement for some time.
Mr Mitchell most certainly used the wrong word in a frustrating situation. Surely, “jobsworth” would have been more suitable.
2012 (Chief Whip "scandal")
When the government review the national speed limit (article 11th May) they should also examine the archaic law limiting LGVs to 40 mph when using "A" class main roads where the national limit applies. An increase to 50 mph would reduce the sometimes chronic congestion caused by LGVs (often supermarket chain vehicles) travelling slowly along main routes. The advances in technology and design of these vehicles will easily negate any safety concerns.
Would it be possible for you to produce a supplement to your daily Olympics edition containing ordinary news? I could then save the main paper for lighting my fire next winter.
Reporting of the Paralympics over that of the Olympics could be much improved if radio channels stop playing clips of hysterical, screaming “commentators”. BBC Radio 4 were at one stage playing a compilation during the Olympics. They convey little information, are difficult to translate and are very irritating for non-sports addicts.
Now is the moment for teachers to act in unison in their quest for parity of pay and pension rights with their public sector comrades.
Strike now! For at least five weeks.
When I asked a young acquaintance of mine why she had not started driving lessons, she replied that she could not afford a new passport. Puzzled I asked what that had to do with driving lessons. Apparently to purchase a new driving licence, first you have to purchase a passport! More ID by the back door.
Dave has promised us a referendum on voting
methods, this I can understand as yet again Mr Clegg has wagged the dog.
After voting Conservative for the last forty plus years I am now about to join the party.
The UKIP party.
Ps I have a pair of old sandals and a false beard if Dave wants them I’ll send them on.
I cannot understand why Mr Brown has been hiding away in his house in Scotland for so long. He only has a few tasks to complete. Firstly, the application form for the Chiltern Hundreds should not be too demanding. Secondly, a letter of abject apology to the Queen and his constituents apologizing for his unforgivable failure to attend the state opening of Parliament. All that then remains is a letter to the Parliamentary authorities indicating a refusal of any form of title, or honour and opting out of his pension and financial entitlements.
Simple, all done before lunch.
Now the spending review has been unveiled, the howls of anguish have started. In the absence of a coherent opposition, terrible stories of impending doom have been valiantly presented from all corners of the BBC.
Yet no contrition or even hint of apology has emerged from those who so cynically brought our country to the brink of social and financial disaster.
The idea of greater tax transparency (Tax overhaul to “lift the lid” on how much we really pay November 14th), is a good one but does not go nearly far enough.
Surely the answer is Flat Tax, a threshold of say, £13000, with a fixed percentage thereafter, flat, with no allowances or loopholes. This should apply to PAYE, the self-employed and companies.
This arrangement would save the taxpayer having to pay of armies of tax accountants to squabble over labyrinthine regulations in order to save wealthy people from paying their dues. HMRC staff could then be deployed to catch the real evaders.
I cannot wait for the indignant howls of protest from self-righteous accountants and avoiders.
Imagine taking a taxi journey where the driver drives like a madman for some distance, then eventually smashes into a brick wall.
Would you then ask him to drive the ambulance taking you ambulance to hospital?
This is the question facing the electorate.
Mr Darling is to deliver Mr Brown’s budget on April 22nd. The following day would be the perfect day for a vote of no confidence to rid our country of this appalling Scottish government.
Chris Hone (letters September 7th) writes that a Chinese lantern landed in a field of sheep. We have had several land on a live motor racing circuit. The result of one being hit by a driver at 130 mph is unthinkable. Surely they must be banned.
Exactly one week ago I wrote the following to South Northamptonshire District Council:
We are about to vote on who runs the council. In order to see if efficiency savings have been made in the right areas, and to discuss this with the candidates we have a request.
We would like you to list, online, every job title within the council, both employees and consultants. The list should be in salary descending order (not mentioning a figure) and should state the number employed.
This should not present an expensive task to your personnel department and will enable us to see if there are any non-jobs that we are paying for.
Many thanks in advance for your action and reply.
To date, surprisingly, I have received no reply or acknowledgement.
I would like to make public some admissions of a shameful personal nature.
I am an indigenous English male and have worked and paid taxes for forty odd years. Worse and to my shame I am…Heterosexual.
To avoid the tide of derision and scorn these admissions will provoke, my wife and myself will stay indoors and watch endless recordings of Midsomer Murders.
I feel much better for getting this off of my chest.
Thank you for your tolerance.
Are we to assume that if the Essex “travellers” win their legal battle to remain in their encampment, that the hundreds of other previously illegal sites become invulnerable? Will it also mean that any group of foreigners could set up a site (on a bank holiday) and be assured of permanent residence?
Will this case set a precedent that blows away any form of planning control?
I think we need some answers and a lot more common sense.
I read in the weekend press that efforts are being made to increase the appeal of Radio 4 to ethnic minorities.
Can I plead, that as an Englishman, there are few entertainments left to me that are free from the failed experiment of multiculturalism. There are, I believe, networks specifically for ethnic minorities. Just please leave Radio 4 alone, imperfections and all!