The plausible deniability of this is breathtaking.
Here in the UK, Boris Johnson has been pushing the threat of “no deal” Brexit hard, forcing the value of the pound to plunge.
In Hong Kong, his brother Max is planning a hotel investment fund targeting rich Asian individuals and pension funds who he expects to be attracted by the weakness of the pound.
Yeah, I know – coincidence.
So Boris Johnson pushes hard on his #JohnsonsNoDealBrexit . Because he has, the pound plummets to 20 year lows and is predicted to fall lower. Johnsons brother, an ex-banker now investor boast of plans to make an absolute fortune on the falling pound. This is how the Tories work. pic.twitter.com/3U9LcICV59
Boris Johnson’s “do-or-die” strategy to take Britain out of the European Union could work, said his youngest half-brother Max, who plans to launch a £1 billion (US$1.2 billion) real estate fund targeting Asian investors.
Johnson, 34, is in advanced talks to co-found a hotel investment fund targeting Asian high net worth individuals and pension funds. He expects the sterling, which has weakened 6.2 per cent against the US dollar in the past six months, to be a big draw for foreign investors. It has fallen 11.7 per cent since the referendum in June 2016.
According to the article (link below), Max Johnson said he could see himself going into politics like his brothers Boris and Jo – but there were “enough Johnsons in politics” at the moment.
Considering what a “johnson” is in American euphemistic slang, I couldn’t agree more.
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.
One of the perils of electing Labour, according to Mrs May in her pretty little speech, is a run on the pound – a drop in its value caused by the actions of the government. This Writer mentioned in my previous article that Mrs May was prone to causing such calamities herself, whenever she gives a speech on Brexit.
Here’s visual evidence of it:
Theresa May: "Labour will cause a run on the pound"
Read the following, from the Health Service Journal, and you might believe so.
Every time Theresa May makes a speech about Brexit, the Pound falls in value. It is currently at a 32-year low, as This Writer understands it – and that’s just in advance of her speech tomorrow (January 17).
A low Pound is great for FTSE100 companies that make their profits in dollars – and terrible for the NHS, which buys all its supplies with pounds.
Theresa May knows this.
So she must also know that she is cancelling out her claimed increase in NHS funding with every poisoned word she utters.
Brexit could result in an extra £900m bill for the NHS as suppliers hike their prices to protect themselves against a weakening pound.
The currency turmoil triggered by Britain’s decision to leave the EU could add a further 18 per cent to the efficiency target set out in the Carter review, according to NHS procurement expert Chris Robson.
Mr Robson, of the management consultancy Akeso and Company, estimates that at least half of the products used in the NHS originate from outside of the UK, with a high proportion manufactured in Europe, Switzerland, the US and the Far East.
Most NHS organisations buy products in the pound, which has plumbed depths not seen for over 20 years against most global currencies.
According to Mr Robson: “The ongoing and sustained deterioration in exchange rates versus key currencies… is very likely to lead to claims from suppliers for an increase in [pound] pricing over the longer term.
Martin Freeman explains the differences between Labour and the Tories in a new video.
The stars have come out to support Labour.
Both Martin Freeman (Watson in the BBC’s Sherlock – among many, many other great roles) and David Tennant (currently enjoying ratings joy in the second season of ITV’s Broadchurch; formerly the star of the BBC’s Doctor Who) appear on Labour’s latest YouTube video, talking about the ideological differences between Labour and the Conservatives.
At first glance, this might seem to support the “stark contrast” between just two choices that David Cameron suggested today, but it seems to this writer that supporters of the other parties will find the comparison just as useful. Where do their own values lie? Some might be more extreme than the Tories; many may be further to the Left than Labour.
It seems worthwhile to have someone stand up and say how this translates on the ground. Here’s the video:
Isn’t it desperately disappointing that, after the British people showed Ed Miliband in no uncertain terms that Labour is still going in the wrong direction, his first response was an appeal for us all to rally in support of his values, whatever they are.
No, Ed, no. It’s time the Labour Party gave up trying to force us to accept something we don’t want. It’s time you gave up being Tory Lite. It’s time – for crying out loud, this isn’t rocket science! – it’s time you gave us all a chance to believe you share our values!
Can you do that – you and your pseudo-socialist friends Ed Balls, and Yvette Cooper, and Tristram Hunt (and the rest)? If not, you need to make way for people who can – before it is too late.
The people’s response to Labour’s offer was written very clearly across ballot papers all over the country on Thursday: Too similar to the Conservatives! We won’t have either! In fact, we’ll support a party that is even more madly right-wing than either of you, just to show that we don’t want you.
And that’s just the response of those who voted. Those who didn’t were making an even plainer message: Why bother, when there isn’t a cigarette paper that can slide between any of you?
Look at this response from Terry Cook on the Vox Political Facebook page: “It [Labour] needs to prove it doesn’t share UKIP or Tory values; simple.”
Now look at the graph at the top of this article, showing that the public has lost faith in Labour every time it has supported reactionary, right-wing, Conservative, neoliberal policies – while announcements of policies that actually help people have restored support to the party.
The people don’t believe Labour should be having anything to do with anti-Socialist schemes. Here’s Alan Weir: “Labour lost my vote. They are no longer a socialist party and do not represent my views.”
He’s one of millions of potential Labour supporters, Ed! Why are you slinging them out wholesale in order to gain a handful of Daily Mail readers (a forlorn hope anyway)?
The evidence suggests increasing numbers of people are rebelling against Conservative control – but the lack of any credible alternative from Labour has left them with nowhere to go. In that sense, Labour may be said to be driving people away from democracy and into slavery in a complete U-turn – away from the principles on which the party was created.
Martin Williams: “He is totally ignoring the electorate because these people only do democracy when it suits them!”
Ros Jesson: “Some Labour people… on BBC’s coverage… their frustration with the leadership was almost palpable.”
Ed’s message highlighted his values of “hard work, fairness and opportunity”. What did people think of that?
“I am sick to death of ‘hard work’ being touted as a value, as if those desperate to find a job were of no value,” commented Pauline Vernon. “The Labour Party is still so determined to occupy the middle ground they are becoming indistinguishable from the Conservatives.”
Paula Wilcock: “Half hearted promises, no believable policies. I want to hear a realistic plan of what they are going to do to get voters like me… to go back to the Labour Party.”
Baz Poulton (who supplied the image), had this to say: “Why not actually stand up for Labour values and ideals instead of just subscribing to the same as the Tories? Labour’s support has been dwindling as they have become more and more right wing… Standing more in line with Labour’s original values sees an obvious climb in support, while their desperation to be more Tory than the Tories is seeing their support suffer.
“It’s obvious why that happens, and what they need to do to get the support of their traditional voters who are turning elsewhere now. Labour’s manifesto reads like the Tory one.”
The worst of it is that, looking at the historical context, this is what Labour wanted– from the New Labour days onward. Look at Owen Jones’ recent Guardian article: “For years the political elite has pursued policies that have left large swaths of Britain gripped by insecurity: five million people trapped on social housing waiting lists; middle-income skilled jobs stripped from the economy; the longest fall in living standards since the Victorian era, in a country where most people in poverty are also in work.”
That was exactly what Margaret Thatcher, Keith Joseph and Nicholas Ridley planned back in the 1970s, as revealed in The Impact of Thatcherism on Health and Well-Being in Britain: “Their view was that defeat of the movement that had forced Heath’s U-turn would require, not simply the disengagement of the state from industry, but the substantial destruction of Britain’s remaining industrial base. The full employment that had been sustained across most of the post-war period was seen, together with the broader security offered by the welfare state, to be at the root of an unprecedented self-confidence among working-class communities.
“Very large-scale unemployment would end the ‘cycle of rising expectations,’ [and] permit the historic defeat of the trade union movement.”
This is exactly what Owen Jones wrote about on Monday. Nicholas Ridley put these ideas forward in (for example) the Final Report of the Policy Group on the Nationalised Industries in – prepare to be shocked – 1977.
And Labour – in office – did nothing about it. This is part of the reason people don’t trust Labour now.
Let’s go back to Mr Jones: “For years Labour has pursued a strategy of professionalising its politicians: its upper ranks are dominated by privileged technocrats who have spent most of their lives in the Westminster bubble.
“The weakening of trade unions and local government has purged working-class voices from a party founded as the political wing of organised labour: just four per cent of all MPs come from a manual background.
“Special advisers are parachuted into constituencies they have never heard of.
“Policies are decided by focus groups; a language is spoken that is alien to the average punter, full of buzzwords and jargon such as ‘predistribution’ and ‘hard-working people better off’.”
All of these things are wrong. There’s no point in even going into the reasons; any right-thinking person will agree that an MP who has never had a proper job (working as a researcher for another MP doesn’t count) is infinitely less use than one who has had to work for a living.
What is Labour’s reaction to UKIP’s Euro win? “The likes of Ed Balls want to respond to the high tide of Farageism with a firmer immigration-bashing message.” In other words, following UKIP’s right-wing lead.
Owen is correct to say: “This is political suicide”. In fact, for Ed Balls, it should be a sacking offence. He’s got no business coming out with it and has embarrassed Labour and its supporters by doing so.
He is also right to say that Labour must be more strident about its policies. Not only that, these policies must address the problems that have been created by neoliberal Conservatism and reverse the trends. That doesn’t mean using the same tools, as New Labour tried – because when the electorate gets tired of Labour again, the Tories would be able to change everything back and hammer the poor like never before.
No – it means removing those tools altogether. A fresh approach to clean out the rot – and the vigilance required to ensure it does not return.
If Ed Miliband really wants to win next year’s election – and this is by no means certain at the moment – then Labour needs to rediscover the values of the British people.
And that means paying attention when we say what those values are.
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