Tag Archives: result

Tories have Commons Twitter account banned from tweeting vote results

He fought propagandists – but did he expect his own party to become the enemy? Churchill’s statue stares toward Parliament. If it was the man himself, it would probably turn its back in disgust.

Can you believe this? The Tories have contrived to have the House of Commons Twitter account stopped from tweeting vote results – because Johnson’s party said it was biased against them.

The House of Commons Twitter account has been banned from tweeting the results of votes after Tory MPs complained it was breaking impartiality rules when one tweet went viral.

During the passage of the trade bill, intended to pave the way for post-Brexit trade deals, the Commons Twitter account shared the outcomes of votes on amendments and new clauses: a 326-263 defeat for a clause relating “to parliamentary approval of trade agreements”, and approval without division for amendments about “sharing information and ministerial functions relating to trade”.

The descriptions were taken from the explanatory statement written by the MP who proposed the motion, and the tweet about new clause 17 was no different. That clause, the tweet said, was “intended to protect the NHS and publicly funded health and care services in other parts of the UK from any form of control from outside the UK”, explaining that it had been defeated 340 votes to 251.

The defeat allowed Labour to argue that Conservative MPs had voted against protecting the NHS from overseas control. The tweet itself was a key piece of evidence, which is why it gained 5,000 likes and almost 17,500 retweets in less than 24 hours.

That drew the attention of Tory MPs, who were bombarded with questions from constituents about why they had voted against such protection. The day after, MPs from the party made a complaint to the clerk of the House, the politically neutral civil servant who oversees the work of the support staff, including the social media team.

They argued that the tweet was in breach of the Commons’ requirement for impartiality. By the end of the day, the Commons team had deleted it and posted an apology.

So it was perfectly permissible for the offending words to be published in the explanatory statement by the MP who proposed the motion; the Tories just didn’t want them to get to the public.

What does that tell us about the Conservative government?

That they don’t want us to have full information about what happens in Parliament?

That they think Parliamentary media should not provide information to the public?

That they want such media to offer pro-Tory propaganda instead?

Johnson and his cronies have really taken the Josef Goebbels method to heart.

But the act has been a huge turn-off to the public – including This Writer (but you’d expect that, I’m sure):

I would have thought the answer was obvious: a would-be fascist dictatorship. But Johnson’s Tories are even failures at that.

Source: Commons Twitter account banned from tweeting vote results | Politics | The Guardian

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Tory corruption: why hide results of inquiry into NHS Covid-19 deaths?

Sufferer: Did any NHS staff member realise, when the Covid cases started coming into hospitals, that they could end up occupying the same beds as the people they were treating?

Who will benefit from the decision to keep secret the findings of a government review of Covid-19 related deaths of NHS staff?

The deceased won’t; they are beyond worrying about these things.

Their families won’t; it’s in their interests to have any mistakes made public, to get justice for the deaths of their relatives.

Other NHS staff won’t; it’s in their interests to have any mistakes made public, to ensure that they are not repeated, possibly harming them.

No, the only people who will benefit from this decision are the decision-makers themselves; secrecy will hide any mistakes they made, obscuring any responsibility they may have for the deaths.

And who are the decision-makers?

Matt Hancock. Boris Johnson.

The Conservative government.

This stinks of Tory corruption.

Source: Coronavirus: Cover-up fears as reviews of Covid-19 deaths among NHS staff to be kept secret | The Independent

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Project Yellowhammer – and the consequences of ‘no deal’ Brexit – explained!

“Stop Brexit!”: Even British comic legend Andy Capp has a reason to fear it.

This was on a friend’s Facebook page so I make no guarantees as to authenticity.

That said, it makes about as much sense as anything we’ve had from the Conservative government.

See what you think:

Yellowhammer summary for those who haven’t read it but want to know what it says explained by someone with a vague idea.

(Note: This is currently being called the ‘Reasonable Worst Case Planning Assumptions’ It only has that title because of Gove being caught lying about it to the select committee, and had to retract that it is, in fact, the base scenario. In many areas I’ve got business experience of, this is optimistic).

1) Most businesses aren’t ready. Big companies are likely to be more ready than smaller companies because they’ve been paying idiots like me to do so for the past months/years.

So some companies will struggle.

2) Leaving in October means also having our national inability to deal with any weather that isn’t moderate.

3) We leave around the time of half-term school holidays, which isn’t great.

4) We hope Ireland won’t cut supply of power to NI. but we can’t make them keep it going

5) Goods through Dover will drop by half. It will be slightly better in a few months. If you have family in Kent, you’ll need a helicopter to visit them at Christmas

6) If you’re going abroad (in the EU), it will take longer to get through customs. Hopefully not US Border durations.

7) Energy costs will go up, some energy companies might (will) go bankrupt.

8) We’ll have a shortage of some medicines. This also includes Vet medicines needed for animals that farmers might want to export.

9) Do you like fresh food? Shame about that. Come back in six months. Also less choice of food in general, and Christmas might be chicken in a tin.. Also we (govt) are saying we can’t assess how bad it is, despite all the unions and businesses telling us, so it’s not our fault when it’s worse than we’re saying here.

10) We think we’ll all have clean water. .Maybe a few hundred thousand people won’t. They might need bottles, or street bowsers, or rain water, rain water is good.

11) Financial Services companies might be fucked. Good job they’re not one of our biggest contributors to GDP and tax or anything.

12) International criminals and terrorists are in for a bonanza.

13) If you’re a Brit living in Europe, err, we don’t have a clue, hope the country you live in is better than us.

14) If you’re an IT company, travel company or anyone who has to send data back and forth with Europe then, err, bollocks. Not looking good. We’re not really sure.

15) Gibraltar’s fucked

16) Riots, public disorder, more homeless, people stealing bread, good job we haven’t slashed police numbers or anything, isnt it?

17) The Dartford crossing could be blocked by the traffic from Dover, which means fuel supplies in Kent, London and the SE in general might all run out. Also about 2000 job losses from refineries closing, and weeks of fuel shortages.

18) Insurance companies (that haven’t mitigated it, ahem) are going to have some problems.

19) If you’re poor, you’re going to be worse off. Actually if you’re poor, struggling, middle class or anything but rich, then you’re going to be worse off.

20) Northern Ireland is more fucked than Gibraltar. Job losses, food shortages, protests, dissident groups etc.

21) Cod Wars mark 2

22) Care homes could collapse en masse. Like, lots of them.

As you can see, nothing to worry about, certainly not all the things they also haven’t included.

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Tory cuts to childrens’ social services mean they face a lifetime of disadvantage

If you heard that children who have to see a social worker end up two grades behind at GCSE and thought the answer was to keep them away from social workers, you’re either a Tory or an idiot – most probably both.

Labour is right and funding for social services has collapsed due to Conservative-prompted cuts.

This Writer lives in one of the most rural areas in the United Kingdom and the service here is struggling desperately.

Faced with a choice between meeting funding targets and giving a child the treatment they deserve, the budget beats the bairn every time.

That’s harmful – not only for the child but for the society he or she inhabits.

It says we don’t care about our youngsters. If they grow up thinking that about themselves – and have evidence in their GCSE results – how will that affect the way they function as part of our culture?

Tories don’t care because they’d rather save the money.

I think they are forgetting the most important law that they can’t change – it’s called the law of unforeseen consequences.

Children who have had contact with a social worker at any time since the age of nine are around two grades behind at GCSE, a government review suggests.

The average classroom has three children who have needed support from social services at some point in last six years – a total of 1.6m children across England, according to the analysis.

On average, disadvantaged pupils achieved around six grades higher and made more progress in schools in cities than those in hamlets and isolated dwellings.

Source: Children with links to social services are two grades behind at GCSE, report suggests | The Independent

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Guest post: Why are politicians determined to honour a corrupted referendum?

This is a question that has bothered me considerably so I am delighted to host Tony O’Malley’s article asking why our political parties are determined to ignore the “lies, misrepresentations, cheating, illegality and probably criminality” of the 2016 EU referendum.

He says he understands left-wing members of the Labour Party have advocated that it is time to “move on”.

The problem is that we can’t. The whole of the UK is in stalemate over the issue.

Perhaps the reason for that is the insistence that we accept a corrupted result and “move on”, despite knowing that doing so will harm us.

Here’s Mr O’Malley [all boldings are mine]:

I have always considered myself a passionate believer in socialism, the internationalism of the Labour movement and Jeremy Corbyn.

I am also a litigation solicitor, who is now ‘retired’ due to various disabilities and health issues. In a prior career, I was a Registered General & Mental Nurse. I had been a member of the governing body of a major independent trades union & professional organisation (RCN), and I had the privilege of being the first ever elected U.K. President of the European Nursing Students Organisation. I have always fought tirelessly for justice for nurses, and especially for student nurses, as I consider them the future of a most noble profession and central to the delivery of high quality care and compassion in our renowned health service.

I voted Remain in the 2016 referendum. For me, it was an easy choice, though I did recognise that much institutional and policy reform was likely to be required if the EU, and the multiplicity of it’s constituent parts was to function better for the people of our continent, and thrive going forward. For quite some time now, I have been raising issues and queries with Jeremy Corbyn, Labour, Jennie Formby, Keir Starmer, and others. These many digital communications have sought early answers to the question of what was our party’s position with regard to the disturbing findings of the UK Electoral Commission about the running, result and supervision of the 2016 EU referendum. Sadly, I have not yet received any responses whatsoever, to any of my many attempts to engage in good faith with Labour politicians and officials who need to explain to me how political expediency now appears to have become so legitimate.

Whilst certain aspects of the actions by Leave campaign groups still remain under investigation by the National Crime Agency, there is already ample evidence in the public domain which reveals that the referendum result cannot be seen as the ‘will of the people’, because of the lies, misrepresentations, cheating, illegality and probably criminality which infested the whole sorry exercise. The courts have stated that, had the referendum not been legally constructed as being that of an ‘advisory’ referendum only, then they could have overturned the result because of the many serious concerns that have already been expressed and which would have been anathema to our long-standing principles of democracy and fair play.

David Cameron’s Conservative government really messed up when they committed, in a leaflet, to honouring the referendum result, when no such power for them to do so existed within the legal structure of the plebiscite.

In all other aspects of our society, we firmly and consistently adhere to the ancient principle that ‘cheats should not prosper’. The penalties for cheating in sport, business, academic testing and in many other areas of human endeavour, generally involve the complete loss of any advantage that the cheater obtained through their disreputable actions. In sport, for example, the winner’s medal would be forfeited if their performance could be shown to have been enhanced by illicit substances or done by any other breach of the rules. If I cheat in a college or school exam, then it should reasonably be expected that I do not receive the benefit that such cheating had given rise to! Nobody would realistically object to a race, match or other competition being re-run, or the prize being awarded to a non-cheater, if cheating was considered to have polluted the integrity of the initial event. This universal reaction is so uncontentious that it barely merits further debate.

Why is it then, when it comes to the widespread cheating and illegality that has been revealed in respect of the 2016 EU referendum, that politicians, the MSM and large sections of our civil society, can choose to close their eyes, and discard their moral compasses on the basis of shallow and temporary political expediency?

I have sadly witnessed a number of voices on the left of our political spectrum recently stating that it is time to ‘move on’ in respect of this unresolved issue. This response has shocked me to my core. If the Labour movement doesn’t stand for justice, then I’m afraid it doesn’t stand for very much!

How would the Hillsborough families, the Grenfell families, the Windrush families, the Orgreave families, the Palestinians and more, have reacted to the statement that it was ‘time to move on’, when their grievances and quest for justice remained unresolved after the long passage of time?

The truth is that it can never be acceptable to sacrifice our core beliefs, as we apparently appear to be doing in this shameful situation. Once you let that genie out of the bottle, it can can never be returned there. A precedent becomes set, that in certain circumstances we can give a nod and a wink to the flouting of the rule of law.

That abrogation of our core beliefs and principles will no doubt visit us again, and again, in forms not yet identified, but with potential unfathomable consequences for the Labour movement and our society.


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‘Left slate’ triumph at Labour NEC election is emphatic statement on Corbyn, anti-Semitism and democracy

Victory: The NEC election result should not only produce the thumbs-up from Jeremy Corbyn – it should be considered a massive thumbs-up for him.

All nine – yes, nine – members of the ‘left slate’ in the elections to the Labour Party’s ruling National Executive Committee have won seats, confounding the attack dogs who tried to undermine support for Jeremy Corbyn with accusations of anti-Semitism against him and one of the candidates.

https://twitter.com/MattTurner4L/status/1036641918007107584

Not only that, but the victory means that a review of internal party democracy is likely to see major changes including the introduction of mandatory reselection of candidates, meaning no sitting MP can expect to keep their Parliamentary seat without the support of their constituency party members.

Opponents of party leader Jeremy Corbyn were hoping to steal support away from the left-wing candidates who support him – most obviously with accusations of anti-Semitism against Peter Willsman, and claims that their support for the leader indicated that they must be anti-Semites (even though no accusation against Mr Corbyn – and there have been many – has been proved).

Supporters of Mr Willsman have pointed out that the accusations against him amount to a claim that demanding proof in support of anti-Semitism allegations is now considered to be anti-Semitism as well.

https://twitter.com/RickBlaine123/status/1036674039799054336

And his victory makes it clear that Labour Party members are entirely capable of making up their own minds about the facts.

His detractors have responded to his election by saying that many party members voted in the first four days of the election period, meaning they would have cast their vote before he was accused.

But people like Mr Eaton forget that we can check this – many votes were made online and the dates they were made are likely to be easy to verify. I would like to see the Labour Party release a statement on this.

The result makes it clear that the anti-Semitism smear campaign is not working at all. In fact, it might be turning party members away from Labour’s right wing.

Actor and stand-up comic Eddie Izzard, who won his position on the NEC by default after another left-wing member was forced to resign her position, was ousted.

And on a personal note, This Writer is pleased to record the abject failure of right-winger Gary Spedding, who contributed to a smear piece calling me an anti-Semite on an online magazine site called Prospect, and then called me an anti-Semite directly on Twitter. Read about it here.

It will be interesting to see the results of the next – Survation, as that company is the most trustworthy – opinion poll on voting intentions, conducted after the new NEC holds its first meeting (today, September 4) and makes its decisions regarding the democracy review and its code of conduct on anti-Semitism.

For now, the result is good:

But the validation is yet to come. It’s not enough that those we consider the good guys won; now they must justify our faith in them.

Visit our JustGiving page to help Vox Political’s Mike Sivier fight anti-Semitism libels in court


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POLL RESULT: The public have seen through fake anti-Semitism claims

Vox Political readers have delivered a resounding thumbs-down to hysteria being whipped up by the right-wing media and politicians about alleged anti-Semitism in the Labour Party.

This Site asked whether readers thought Labour should continue to treat every claim of anti-Semitism as a hugely-damaging blow to the party – as certain prominent MPs and organisations like the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council have suggested.

Alternatively, I asked if it would be better for the party to put in place a process to weed out fake, frivolous or malicious claims and get on with fighting REAL anti-Semitism.

The result was clear within the first few minutes of the poll going up on April 2 – but I left it until today (April 7), just to be sure.

A towering 98.24 per cent of respondents – 4,515 voters – said Labour should implement a process to weed out fake, frivolous or malicious claims, and get on with fighting REAL anti-Semitism.

These thousands will, I hope, be encouraged by the fact that incoming Labour General Secretary Jennie Formby has been charged with doing exactly that – improving the party’s disciplinary system to ensure that only credible accusations are given the time of day.

And what of the 81 voters (1.76 per cent of respondents) who said every claim, no matter how unlikely, should be treated as a hugely damaging blow to Labour?

I am tempted to suggest those who supported this option include everybody who has made such comments in the press over the past few days…

But I think even 81 would be a gross inflation of their numbers.


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Tory tyranny: Now they want to overrule the result of the general election

The plan was detailed by Andrea Leadsom, the Conservatives’ leader of the Commons [Image: PA].

What do you do if you’re a Tory MP whose party has flung away its Parliamentary majority in a vanity election? Hold another poll, to try to get your majority back?

NO! You try to nullify the will of the people by corruptly stuffing Parliamentary committees with your fellow Tories!

That is what Andrea Leadsom is proposing.

She – together with her boss, Theresa May – knows that the other parties in Parliament would never tolerate the huge injustices that they intend to perpetrate on working people and the poor, while continuing to grab power and wealth for people who don’t need it (their own supporters and donors – but only those who are very rich).

So they intend to force Parliament to accept more Conservative MPs on Parliamentary committees than the election result justifies.

Presumably they are hoping they can rely on their far-right Northern Irish allies the DUP to force the vote through, even though it is an affront to democracy and a slap in the face for every single voter in the UK.

Like it or not, the people have spoken and we have a hung Parliament.

In that situation, the party governing by minority rule must accept that, if it wants to get any legislation passed, it must persuade the other parties to support it.

The resulting laws would tend to be more balanced than in Parliaments with outright majorities for any party.

By trying to bypass that situation, the Tories are saying they wish to impose dictatorship on the people of the UK.

They’re saying our vote didn’t matter; they will grab power for themselves and use it to enrich themselves. The rest of us can go to Hell.

And it seems we must rely on the DUP to save us from this fate.

If the Tories get their way, I think we should have a general strike.

Labour and the Liberal Democrats have accused ministers of seeking to subvert democracy by proposing a rule change that would guarantee the government a majority on crucial committees that scrutinise legislation.

Jeremy Corbyn said the proposal, published on Friday and to be voted on next week, amounted to an “unprecedented power grab” by the government.

The plan, detailed in a motion by Andrea Leadsom, the leader of the House of Commons, seeks to change the rules on membership of public bill committees, often referred to by their former name, standing committees.

As part of the progress of a bill through the Commons, a committee is set up to scrutinise it in detail. This is often the period when the most amendments are made and potential problems addressed.

The party makeup of such committees is based on the composition of the Commons, meaning that since the election in June, when Theresa May lost her majority, newly formed committees would seek a political balance.

However, Leadsom’s motion, to be considered on Tuesday, says that while parity should be sought on other types of committee, this would not happen on public bill committees.

The rules should be interpreted, it reads, such that “where a committee has an odd number of members the government shall have a majority, and where a committee has an even number of members the number of government and opposition members shall be equal; but this instruction shall not apply to the nomination of any public bill committee”.

Corbyn tweeted: “An unprecedented attempt to rig parliament and grab power by a Conservative government with no majority and no mandate.”

Source: Opposition condemns government’s Commons committee ‘power grab’ | Politics | The Guardian


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Vox Political readers overwhelmingly reject plan to send NHS patients to private hospitals

zyourhealthruined

The results are in – and they could not be more decisive.

Yesterday (November 26), This Writer reported on a plan to send NHS patients in England to private hospitals for operations. I pointed out that the NHS currently spends £600 million a year correcting botched private operations and questioned the wisdom of paying private capital, possibly to drain even more money from the public service through incompetence.

Then I asked two questions: Is it safe to hand NHS operations over to private health companies? and Is it safe to discharge patients from hospital early, in order to free up beds?

After nearly 26 hours, the results are beyond question.

No less than 97.14 per cent of respondents – 714 of you – rejected the plan for private health to carry out operations. Only 12 people – 1.56 per cent of respondents – thought it would be safe.

And 95.35 per cent of respondents – 615 of you – said patients should not be discharged early. Just seven people – 1.08 per cent of respondents – thought sending patients home early would be safe.

I should add that, while the results are not scientific in that the respondents are not known to be a representative sample of UK citizens, efforts were made to publicise the poll to people with a wide range of political views.

Considering the emphatic nature of the response, This Writer will communicate it to the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt. It will be interesting to see how he justifies a policy that has hardly any support at all among the public.

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Why is the Conservative Government hiding the results of its consultation on the future of the BBC?

Will Chris Davies MP pay any attention to VP's request for action over the BBC consultation? Will your MP? Have you asked them?

Will Chris Davies MP pay any attention to VP’s request for action over the BBC consultation? Will your MP? Have you asked them?

This Writer just sent an email to Brecon and Radnorshire’s Conservative MP, Chris Davies:

“When will Parliament publish the results of the consultation on the future of the BBC?

“I was one of the huge number of people who responded to the consultation.

“Is the government withholding the results in order to hide the true extent of public support for the BBC? There seems to be no other reason for the delay.

“The government needs to be reminded that the BBC is a hugely important part of the UK’s culture. Its contribution to the arts is unparalleled anywhere in the world, and this is largely because, thanks to the licence fee, it is not constrained by commercial concerns.

“The only area in which the BBC lets the public down is its newsgathering and reporting, which is unreasonably biased towards the Conservative Party. This is because the BBC news operation is packed with either Conservative supporters or members of the Conservative Party. That must stop.

“There is, of course, absolutely no reason for the government to cut the BBC any further – unless it is to advance the ambitions of the Conservative Party’s friends in the commercial media? You will be aware that the Conservative Government’s unreasonable demand that the BBC should fund free TV licences for pensioners has already placed a huge, politically-motivated financial burden on our public service broadcaster, and that is why I say the Conservative Government must impose no FURTHER cuts on BBC funding.

“Please ask John Whittingdale to publish the results of the consultation immediately. No government should hide the results of a public consultation from the public.

“I look forward to hearing from you. I will want to know that you have taken action on this matter.”

It will be interesting to see if Mr Davies pays this matter any attention at all.

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