Tag Archives: Airport

Oh, Colin! Losing freedom of movement through EU airports is EXACTLY the Brexit you voted for!

Poor Colin Browning! He clearly seems to have voted for Brexit without having the faintest idea how it would work.

For example: leaving the EU means UK citizens no longer have the right to freedom of movement between EU countries and their own.

Officials had warned before Brexit happened that this could lead to long queues in airports like Schiphol, near Amsterdam.

But that seemed to have passed over Colin’s head as he tweeted the following, without a sign of irony:

You can see for yourself the number of replies he has received.

But you really need to read a few. You can find them by searching the Twitter hashtag #OhColin.

There are a lot along these lines:

How about this? See:

Trouble is (for Colin), this is the Brexit reality:

This has been confirmed by Schiphol’s official Twitter feed:

But there are some there, it seems, who still can’t avoid joining in:

But there is a downside and here it comes:

and

https://twitter.com/pgchipperfield/status/1228391387932090369

Fortunately that’s not true.

But there are millions of them out there.

And they’re all in line to have surprises as nasty as that experienced by Colin.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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If Brexit is about taking back control from the EU, why is Gatwick Airport now owned by the French?

Gatwick Airport: Britain had a chance to “take back control” of it this week, but a French firm has bought the controlling interest in it instead.

It’s bad enough that Gatwick wasn’t owned by the British when it was sold, but selling it to the French – at a time when all government propaganda is about retaking control from Europe – makes a worse mockery of Brexit than it already is.

Foreigners control our water supplies and railway services; they control our energy suppliers and are heavily involved in our technology industries (as concerns about Chinese firm Huawei have demonstrated).

And yet Theresa May keeps trying to tell us she is taking back control of our destiny for us.

Let’s remember it was Conservatives like Mrs May who originally sold off our state-owned assets. At the time, they tried to make it seem that we were taking back control, too.

(Remember? It was all about, “Now, you have a chance to own [BT/British Gas/British Water/British Rail/whatever else they were flogging that week]!” And who ended up owning those things? Firms from Europe. And to make matters worse, they’re mostly nationalised firms from Europe!)

Brexit is not about the British taking back control of anything. It is about the Tories tightening their grip around our throats after they sold off everything that was worth controlling – to Europe.

And don’t complain about the Opposition parties failing to call a second referendum. Simple Parliamentary arithmetic shows they can’t.

Anybody who whines about Jeremy Corbyn failing to stop Brexit needs to take a crash course in personal responsibility. The buck stopped with the people, back in June 2016.

And it’s the people who will suffer, if Brexit happens in any of the forms Mrs May is threatening.

France’s Vinci Airports is taking a controlling stake in Gatwick for £2.9bn, a week after the UK’s second-biggest airport was brought to a standstill by a series of drone sightings.

A consortium led by the US investment fund Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) is selling a majority stake of 50.01% in the airport to Vinci Airports, one of the world’s top airport operators and part of the infrastructure group Vinci. Vinci and GIP will manage Gatwick together.

The deal, which was agreed on Thursday, was delayed by the chaos caused by three days of drone sightings in the run-up to Christmas. Gatwick, the eighth-busiest airport in Europe by passenger numbers, was forced to close its runway, disrupting flights for 140,000 passengers.

Source: Gatwick airport: majority stake sold to French group | Business | The Guardian

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People think the Gatwick airport ‘drone’ story was invented by the government to distract from Brexit

The usual suspect: This witty little piccie was spotted on Twitter.

Be honest: It wouldn’t surprise you one bit if Theresa May was responsible for the drones that brought Gatwick Airport to a standstill this week.

Of course there are some who would blame Jeremy Corbyn (the following is humorous, though) …

… but the empirical evidence suggests it couldn’t have been him. That’s unless you think he would do it to highlight the fact that Labor was right two years ago, of course:

The reaction of government ministers to the airport situation has been risible, to say the least.

If there is a serious side to this, many people are finding it hard to see. For instance:

https://twitter.com/MontyBestUK/status/1075819200701181958

The reaction of @MontyBestUK demonstrates the danger presented by the Conservative government’s behaviour.

The Tories have failed to retain the confidence of the British public (the confidence of Parliament is another matter entirely), and people are finding it easy to believe they could be behind “scare” stunts that distract the media from Theresa May’s failure over Brexit.

Comedian Mark Steel reinforces the point:

Gatwick itself has returned to normal – more or less, as Mishal Husain reported earlier:

But how long do you think it will be until the Tories decide to ban ordinary UK citizens from owning and using drones?

And if Mrs May hoped this drone incident really would distract us from her Brexit woes, she is mistaken.

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David Cameron won general election with series of lies? Tell us something we DON’T know!

Yvette Cooper is only half-right. Cameron certainly lied to win the election – but Labour failed to beat him because Labour did not effectively answer those lies.

Labour’s five-year-long failure to deny the claim that it had spent too much while in government is the perhaps the most obvious example.

But Cooper has chosen to highlight promises that were made to the people of the UK, which have been broken in the very short time since.

David Cameron won the general election on the basis of a series of lies, Yvette Cooper said on Thursday, as she highlighted a series of broken promises by the Conservatives.

In a sharpening of her rhetoric against the Tories, the Labour leadership contender accused Cameron of ripping up nine pre-election promises. She said he had changed tack on areas ranging from child tax credits to housing and rail electrification.

Cooper, the shadow home secretary, said: “We may have our own leadership election going on, but Labour can’t allow David Cameron to get away with this and carry on like nothing has happened – he is taking the British public for fools. We have to confront him directly on every lie and broken promise – that’s exactly what I plan to do in parliament and across the country.

The nine areas identified by Cooper are:

  • Cuts in child tax credits. Cooper said Cameron denied during the election that he would cut child tax credits. She said Osborne, the chancellor, unveiled £4.5bn of cuts to child tax credits in the budget which would hit women twice as hard as men.
  • Cuts to child benefit after Cameron said during the election there would be no cuts beyond a two-year freeze. Cooper says it will now be subject to a four-year freeze.
  • Cancellation of rail electrification plans.
  • Downgrading of the number of affordable homes due to be built. The Office for Budget Responsibility has said 14,000 fewer homes will be built.
  • Delaying of a decision on a new airport runway in south-east England. Downing Street says it is standing by its commitment to reach a decision by the end of this year.
  • Delay in the introduction of tax-free childcare from 2015 to 2017.
  • Shelving of an election pledge to give public officials three days off work to take part in volunteering.
  • Delay until 2020 in the introduction of the social care cap.
  • Reversal of pledge for greater government transparency after launch of review into freedom of information.

Source: David Cameron won general election with series of lies, says Yvette Cooper | Politics | The Guardian

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Welsh Government uses Star Trek language ‘Klingon’ to reply to formal question from Tory politician on UFO sightings – Mirror Online

Should've gone to Specsavers: The crew of the Klingon Cruiser Amar are shocked to discover themselves in orbit around Cardiff, and not their homeworld of Q'onos.

Should’ve gone to Specsavers: The crew of the Imperial Klingon Ship Amar are shocked to discover themselves in orbit over Cardiff Airport, and not (as they had previously believed) their homeworld of Q’onos.

Clwyd West AM Darren Millar had asked for a report on UFO sightings over Cardiff Airport since it’s acquisition by the government.

In three questions Mr Millar asked the economy minister Edwina Hart if she’d make a statement “on how many reports of unidentified flying objects there have been at Cardiff Airport since its acquisition by the Welsh Government”.

He also asked what “discussions has the Welsh Government had with the Ministry of Defence regarding sightings of unidentified flying objects in Wales in each of the past five years”.

He added: “What consideration has the Welsh Government given to the funding of research into sightings of unidentified flying objects in Wales?”

The Welsh Government replied: “jang vIDa je due luq. ‘ach ghotvam’e’ QI’yaH-devolved qaS.”

It is understood to mean: “The minister will reply in due course.

“However this is a non-devolved matter.”

A fuller answer will be provided to Mr Millar by July 15.

But an Assembly source said: “The only extra-terrestrial life seen near Cardiff recently seems to be Darren Millar.

“Perhaps instead of spending time and wasting Government resources asking questions about UFOs he should be fighting for the very real concerns of his constituents.”

Source: Welsh Government uses Star Trek language ‘Klingon’ to reply to formal question from Tory politician on UFO sightings – Mirror Online

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The ‘Daily Mail’ Wales – about as real as Brigadoon

Daily Fail Logo

A tweet from a local (Conservative) Assembly member and county councillor has set me off to read a Daily Mail hack-job on the Welsh government and its policies. It makes for bleak reading but I have yet to find any resemblance to the Wales I know.

Has the author, Robert Hardman, ventured any further than the M4 corridor in his researches? It seems doubtful.

The first section attacks the Welsh Government’s purchase of Cardiff Airport for more than the expected value, plus extra millions for investment, saying Bristol Airport attracts six times the custom and the subsidised bus service from Cardiff is going empty.

Perhaps we should not be surprised by this attack. The Mail is a Tory-supporting rag and Tories no longer believe in investment (look at the way George Osborne cut capital projects to shreds, after he became Chancellor) – except when they do (HS2 is costing increasing millions every day, Who benefits, I wonder).

If Cardiff Airport was making losses, then it seems perfectly sensible for the administration to take it over and turn it around. But that won’t happen in a day, or even in a year (nationalisation happened at the end of March 2013) and it is unrealistic of Mr Hardman to pretend that it should.

I live in Mid Wales, where the only airport is fictional (Llandegley International) and the buses are full. We could do with a few more, in fact. Perhaps Mr Hardman could exert some influence on the Westminster government to provide a little more Aggregate External Grant (AEG – the way central government funds local government and regional assemblies) funding to help with that?

Next, Mr Hardman wheels out a few hard-done-by Welsh people, starting with an NHS nurse from Pembrokeshire who has had to pay for a hip operation because of an 18-month waiting list.

It is hard to combat that kind of criticism without knowing all the details. However, my own experience of the Welsh NHS is of being seen promptly for the pre-op and being able to choose the date and time of the operation. Perhaps Mr Hardman is cherry-picking special cases in order to make his point?

Next up: A group of West Wales parents who want their children taught in English as opposed to Welsh. They live in Cardigan, where education is run by Ceredigion County Council, whose main political groups are Plaid Cymru, the Independents, and the Liberal Democrats. Why is Mr Hardman blaming Labour, then?

He wants us to believe the problems are nothing to do with funding: “Wales gets the same subsidies as other parts of the UK which are worse off but receive a better service,” writes Mr Hardman.

He’s wrong, of course.

Take the NHS. Wales has had billions clawed back from its health service by greedy Tories in Westminster, in a transparent attempt to force standards down and direct blame at innocent parties. Mr Hardman’s article buys into that deceit.

When I discussed this with a Welsh NHS surgeon less than two weeks ago, he said there was a huge difference between the service being delivered and the way it is described by politicians, who he described as “snakes”. I cannot help but sympathise with the people who provide the service; their work is what I see.

That is not to say that there are no problems in the Welsh NHS! If I suggested that, I would be guilty of exactly the same kind of blanket behaviour as Mr Hardman. Of course there are problems.

But his use of the Mid-Staffs scandal to bolster his argument gives him away. Mid Staffs did not have a hugely inflated mortality rate; the statistics were manipulated to provide the Tory Health Secretary with the headline he wanted.

Moving on again, we come to a person with what seems to be a genuine grievance about mistreatment of his mother by Welsh hospital staff. Again, I cannot comment on the individual case because I don’t have the details.

All I can do is reiterate that it is wrong to claim that a service covering an entire country of the UK must be entirely abominable, on the basis of one case.

… and I see that Mr Hardman concedes this point, admitting that most NHS professionals are dedicated and conscientious. He blames the Labour-run Assembly Government.

But I have to come back to my main problem with this article: Mr Hardman has not described the Wales in which I live. Why, then, should I believe his criticism of the Labour administration?

The article concludes with a bizarre story about Year Six school pupils being indoctrinated with anti-English propaganda using two dolls. “What, I wonder, is the Welsh word for ‘Orwellian’?” carps Mr Hardman.

It’s the same as the English word, but Mr Hardman needs to revise his definitions. If he wants ‘Orwellian’, he need look no further than the English Tory Party’s ‘bingo and beer’ budget advert.

“The people of Wales deserve better,” Mr Hardman concludes. Yes they do.

Better than his article.

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