Sturgeon and Davidson make fools of themselves over Scottish Labour’s tax policy change

Well done to Nicola Sturgeon and Ruth Davidson for making complete idiots of themselves and their parties. They clamoured to score cheap points after Scottish Labour announced it no longer needed to offer a £100 rebate to protect low-paid workers from its own planned income tax increase of 1p on the basic rate. The rebate was intended to make sure people on low wages would not have to pay any more income tax than they do currently – but an increase in the personal allowance (the amount each earner is…

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Britain sacrifices steel industry to curry favour with China

Even the Telegraph has turned against the Tories over steel. Britain’s special relationship with China is becoming more expensive by the day. It now threatens to destroy the British steel industry, a foundation pillar of our manufacturing economy. Britain is not alone. Most of Europe’s steel foundries are heading for annihilation under the current EU trade regime, with unthinkable consequences through the network of European and British supply chains. It is hard to pin down the exact moment when George Osborne’s love affair with China turned into a Faustian Pact.…

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Why are Tories talking about a Labour/Plaid coalition that won’t happen?

This is not impressive from the Welsh Conservatives. Nobody is talking about a Labour/Plaid coalition at the moment. Plans to build an M4 relief road would be “dead in the water” if Labour and Plaid Cymru are in coalition after May’s assembly election, the Welsh Conservatives have claimed. Labour wants to build a new motorway south of Newport to ease congestion. But the Tories said it would not happen under a Labour-Plaid government as Plaid are opposed to the relief road. Labour called the claims “scare-mongering” and Plaid said the…

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Welsh Liberal Democrat pledges are pale imitations of Labour

The “party who listens”? More like the party that copies Welsh Labour. How is the pledge to increase apprenticeships different from Labour’s promise to provide 100,000 new – quality – places? It isn’t. There’s a promise to provide more nurses – but didn’t the Labour-run Welsh Assembly pass a law to create a minimum nurse staffing level? That law was proposed by Welsh Lib Dem leader Kirsty Williams herself so this election proposal merely follows through on a matter that is already agreed. Labour, having established that more nurses will…

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How 3ft 10in George took on the Government over benefit cut – and won

Notice how the boss of Disability Direct is saying what we on the social media have for years – that people have been dying because of what the Tories call “reforms”. And look at the research findings, saying the extra cost of living with a disability is £500 per month. Why, then, has the Conservative Government been trying to cut disabled benefit entitlement? Elsewhere in the original story, Rob Barfield is right to say DLA (and now PIP) is not a benefit but compensation to cope with the costs of…

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If Cameron has ruled out nationalising Tata steel, he’s NOT doing everything he can

Steel production in the UK could disappear because David Cameron doesn’t want to nationalise it. His ideological opposition to state ownership of anything could end the jobs of 40,000 skilled steel workers, but that’s a sacrifice he’s willing to make – it seems – because he won’t be affected. Of course, if he can find a buyer, then he might escape the wrath of most UK voters when the May elections take place. What’s the betting he’ll turn to the Chinese? David Cameron has said the government is “doing everything…

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Call for submissions – inquiry launched into employment support for disabled people | Politics and Insights

Disability Employment Gap 2015. Source: UK Parliament. The Work and Pensions Committee has launched an inquiry into the Government’s commitment to halve the “disability employment gap.” According to the most recent data, 46.7% of disabled people were in work at the end of 2015 compared to 80.3% of non-disabled people. In order to close this gap, the Committee says an extra 1.2 million disabled people would need to be supported into work. The Committee’s welfare to work report, published in October 2015, raised concerns about the lack of success of…

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Jeremy Hunt: Lies, damned lies & 6,000 statistics | Mutterings from the Left

There have been numerous debates surrounding the now-infamous Jeremy Hunt speech in July last year, when he claimed that 6,000 additional deaths were attributable to NHS staffing levels at the weekends and that mortality increased 15% on a Sunday compared to a Wednesday – statistics which he used in the context of arguing for a change in the Junior Doctor’s contract, to enable a “7-day NHS”. It has always been speculated that the statistics he used must have been taken from an article (authored by Sir Bruce Keogh, Nick Freemantle, Domenico…

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How steel and seven other great British industries have collapsed | Huffington Post

The Huffington Post UK analysed Office for National Statistics figures that show how steel and other heavy industries have haemorrhaged jobs since comparable records began in 1978 – a span that has included Tory, Labour and coalition governments have been in charge. 1. Textiles: 350,000 Jobs Lost 2. Car Manufacturing: 330,000 Jobs Lost 3. Steel Making: 315,000 Jobs Lost 4. Coal Mining: 158,000 Jobs Lost 5. Farming: 142,000 Jobs Lost 6. Ship, Train And Plane Manufacturing: 138,000 Jobs Lost 7. Tin Mining: 52,000 Jobs Lost 8. Fishing: 9,000 Jobs Lost…

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These images show how Labour is standing up for steel while the Tories are standing idle

If you want to know what’s really happening, go to the social media. That’s where This Writer found the Daily Mirror’s front page: “Betrayed”? That’s a bit strong, isn’t it? Well, no. Look at this image of Business minister Sajid Javid. If it looks like he was having a great time, it’s because he wasn’t having anything to do with the crisis over Tata’s plan to sell off its steelmaking works in the UK. He was in Australia at a fancy banquet, giving a speech to the British Chamber of…

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