When The Facts Change >> Corbyn dramatically cutting Tory Lead

With no TV Debate – Manifestos do the Talking

When the facts change I change my mind. What do you do, Sir?  J.M Keynes.

In a time of Information Overload, the Info-Arbitrageur is King.

Tim Shipman of the Times refers to the increasingly decreasing gap between Tories and Labour. There’s no hiding the fact the Tories are dumping it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There will be big price changes at the betting websites over the next few hours. Get in.

 

 

 

Macron
Times
Telegraph

Theresa May decriminalises Bribery, Fraud & Election Rigging

The American satirist HL Mencken famously quipped that no-one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American people.

But here in Britain we have a different maxim:

No Tory ever lost out overestimating the gullibility of the British Voter

I interviewed David Whyte of the University of Liverpool about various aspects of corruption last week.

He called for an investigation into allegations  the Tory party has received funding from laundered HSBC money.

Yesterday the Conservative Manifesto included proposals to scrap the Serious Fraud Office :

Tories are also proposing that all voters provide ID cards to vote – a move which has been criticised by the Electoral Commission which itself recently concluded that the Tories themselves broke electoral rules regarding local spending limits in the 2015 election.

The Tories got away with this and are now seeking to undermine the smooth running of future elections.

This is the sort of thing you expect from Turkey, Russia, or even Iran.

May is very scary. I cannot emphasise enough what  a bad idea it would be to vote for her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Function Creep: Indian ID Card Expanding in Scope

Real Media have been looking at the links between UK, US and Indian National Database and surveillance systems.

Here are two highlights:

 

 

Tory Education Cuts

Now that we are living through an age of automation and underemployment, technical skills should be our passport to competing on the post-Brexit world stage.

Tories hell-bent on Education Apartheid

But Tories are up-front about being the anti-immigration austerity party.

Selective Grammar Schools and pricy uni fees reflect a backward Tory deskilling agenda which maximises inequality and cuts UK competitiveness.

Even the PM’s former colleague George Osborne’s  Standard reported last week that quite a few Tories are upset that the PM remains stubborn about cutting funding to schools.

Given the context Labour’s policy to increase education spending and cut university fees sounds like the most sensible option if we are to remain a serious competitive economy.

Channel Four report on Education Cuts

Historic Tory Education Policy

Rhodes Boyson was a Tory MP who switched from the Labour Party because he objected to Labour’s education policies.

 

The Judge’s Mum, The Law, & Client Earth

Trump’s appointment Neil Gorsuch is the son of Reagan’s EPA Head Anne Gorsuch.

She did her best to destroy it.

 

 

But apparently her gutting of the EPA led to major developments in the field of environmental law.

I’ve been reading about some of this in Lawyers James Thornton and Martin Goodman’s new book, Client Earth.

Whereas Thornton and Goodman say their Client is the Earth, Gorsuch proudly states his client is … The Law.

Encore une fois, industry, via dead letters, attempts to short change the planet.

Breaking: Corrupt Money Launderers HSBC bankrolled Corrupt Cameron & Corrupt Osborne’s Trips to Davos

Corrupt Money Launderers HSBC bankrolled David Cameron and George Osborne’s trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2009, it has emerged.

The controversial lender lent the gaffe-prone billionaire bookie and former Tory Treasurer Michael Spencer £200 million pounds just a day before the massive Iceland Crisis that wiped billions of pounds off the balance sheets of many UK Local Authorities.

Many of these cash strapped Local Authorities had invested in Iceland because of advice given to them by one of Michael Spencer’s firms — Butlers.

Shortly after getting a £200million bailout from HSBC and narrowly avoiding bankruptcy because of the Iceland debacle (unlike his local authority clients), Spencer donated a million pounds to the Tory party.

It was around this time that Spencer’s holding company IPGL paid for Cameron and Osborne to fly to Davos by private jet.

This revelation is all the more galling given that Cameron and Osborne are known to have shaped regulation to favour HSBC and Spencer’s ICAP and torpedoed investigations into both firms both in the UK and the USA.

Some anti-corruption researchers and campaigners raised this issue with the HSBC board at the Bank’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) in London on Friday but were sidelined.

The Canary have run a piece on the scandal which has received zero pick-up in the mainstream press.

For more info on Spencer read this article by the excellent I am Incorrigible :

 

British media prefer Marine Le Pen to Jeremy Corbyn DESPITE ALMOST IDENTICAL ECONOMIC ARGUMENTS

Rupert Murdoch prefers Marine Le Pen to Jeremy Corbyn as she is, like himself, a racist anti-EU campaigner.

But if you forget about race and look at international trade and financial markets — her views are much more like Corbyn’s than Murdoch’s.

She’s a protectionist.

This is the same direction opportunist Theresa May is now taking when she steals Labour policies.

But May is still a ruthless Tory – paying off her friends in the finance sector while saying she will protect the NHS and public services.

Populism

Nigel Farage was allowed to open the door to ‘populism’ in the UK and, having achieved his aim of getting Britain out of the EU, he is now openly supporting Marine Le Pen.

I wrote about his interview with Le Pen a few months ago which was remarkable because till Brexit he avoided being seen in her company for fear of being called a fascist.

The interview was also interesting because Le Pen referred to how much more similar Theresa May’s policies now are to the Front National’s — and not to Emmanuel Macron’s.

This was even more remarkable for Le Pen because Macron had just been invited to visit Downing Street and she hadn’t.

Downing Street failed to get friendly with Trump before November and now, yet again, they are slow to get to know Le Pen.

But either way, as alluded to in the previous post, Le Pen’s differences with Trump, Farage and Murdoch, and similarity with Corbyn can be summed up in one word: DEREGULATION

Murdoch

Today’s Murdoch-owned Times quotes Marine Le Pen’s father, Jean Marie Le Pen, who founded the Front National, as saying she must act like Murdoch’s friend — Donald Trump.

Mr Le Pen’s anti-semitism is not even mentioned till the eighth sentence.

The very idea that other racism might exist in France is not alluded to even once.

Murdochs and Trumps

Unlike the Blairs before them, we know the Murdochs and the Trumps still get on.

Many Brexiteers love Le Pen as she is anti-immigrant and anti-EU.

Here is Donald Trump Jr retweeting his dad’s friend Nigel Farage:

Here’s the actual video:

Deregulation – The Elephant in the Room

Like Murdoch and unlike Corbyn, Le Pen uses immigration to divide.

Lots of people in the UK are now sceptical about Globalisation – many vote UKIP, Labour, Green, and SNP.

By stealing Labour policies and rhetoric the Tories are picking up plenty of ex-UKIP votes.

With the media’s help they try to convince voters that Blair, Cameron and even Corbyn are far too metropolitan and somehow un-British, and that we  should all get back in touch with our socially conservative inner-Tory.

Many of these voters are against excessive immigration and open borders.

Which Corbyn and Lib Dems are seen as soft on.

We’re constantly told that we want a strong leader. Like May, Trump, or Le Pen.

Now is Le Pen’s time because she goes one further than Corbyn, Sturgeon, Lucas and even Theresa May.

For Le Pen is both fully racist and fully anti-capitalist — wanting total protection of both borders and markets.

She needs to solve France’s unemployment and lack of productivity without acknowledging that the EU has historically protected its borders and markets (often to benefit France!)

Is Le Pen more scared of the Eastern Europeans who’ve used free movement since communism fell; the refugees from US / UK / Coalition operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria; or of immigrants who’ve moved to France not because of the EU but because of France’s own kleptocratic African, Asian and Caribbean  adventures?

Deregulation

Unlike Trump, Farage and Murdoch — and very much like Corbyn — Le Pen is fervently anti-Deregulation.

Farage ran a very confused Brexit campaign that focused on Brussels’ authoritarianism and ignored the degree to which Brussels had been infiltrated and in many ways captured by the City of London’s lobby group.

For evidence of this lobbying just look at the EU -US trade agreement TTIP.

This policy was announced by Obama and Cameron in Northern Ireland at the G7 / G8 meeting in 2013 and would have harmonised food, labour and environmental regulation on both sides of the Atlantic.

It’s precisely that model of Anglo-Saxon style capitalism that Le Pen and Corbyn both reject.

Farage just pretended to hate it. He is actually a big fan of the financial services lobby. It’s where he gets his cash.

But still, lots of Brexit campaigners, including Farage, jumped on the momentum that had been generated by the Anti-TTIP movement to push for Brexit.

In France, Le Pen used TTIP to push for her own election.

This is the most irresponsible manner in the way the French election is being covered here in the UK.

There is not enough parallel context being drawn with the UK political scene..

Is Le Pen being praised by the British press simply because our newspaper owners think she is a bit like Theresa May?

EU debate

The way the European Central Bank is run is severely flawed but little discussion of its policies are permitted to take place at any level.

Therefore even though  many people know there is a problem,  our media and politicians don’t permit us the space to discuss it.

Many Labour and Lib Dems seemed to have swallowed deregulation whole and by aggressively campaigning to remain in the EU didn’t permit debate of its flaws.

Jeremy Corbyn  was an exception to that as he said he was against TTIP and deregulation. But he wasn’t given the platform that he deserved.

He was co-opted by the Remain camp.

His biggest failing on Europe was that he didn’t take more of a stand in public over TTIP.

Despite letting people know his views on Trident and Bombing Syria Corbyn never engaged in a public debate with his party about TTIP and so the deregulation lobbyists captured the entire debate.

They’re doing the same with the NHS and PFI.

So despite having some great ideas about taking back control, Corbyn’s project is being treated as a joke while Le Pen’s is taken seriously.

Corbyn’s patriotism is being rejected by the tax-avoiding foreign-owned media in favour of Theresa May’s lies which are designed to mask the looting of the UK public sector by the financial services sector.

Will Labour come up with a plan to save the NHS by prosecuting bankers for fraudulent PFI?

I asked them that very question this week and have been told Labour’s  PFI announcements are due later in the campaign.

I suggested that we need ideas circulating asap in order to persuade people to ignore the spin. But so far no reply.

It’s now or never. I’m still waiting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PFI Fraud: Labour need to debate Solution

Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party needs to have an urgent debate about how to resolve billions of pounds of New Labour’s Private Finance Initiative (PFI) debts, according to a leading PFI research expert.

PFI was conjured up by John Major’s Government but deployed by New Labour on a grand scale.

Overcharging on PFI projects has meant the British taxpayer has  given away billions of pounds to the Private Sector that the government itself could have borrowed for far cheaper by issuing its own bonds.

“We cannot continue to expose the flaws in PFI, have a review and do nothing. More radical action is essential for which there is wide public support. The public cost of PFI buyouts, bailouts and terminations plus the extra cost of private finance and higher PFI transaction costs is £28bn – enough to build 1,520 new secondary schools for two million pupils.” says Dexter Whitfield of the European Services Strategy Unit.

 

 

PFI has allowed successive governments to pay for schools, hospitals, motorways and various military and government buildings without the borrowing showing up in the the government’s annual spending.

The borrowing is hidden off balance sheet so the government is able to look as though it is building projects for much cheaper than the real cost of the project — in other words PFI is based on accounting tricks.

However no major politician, including John McDonnell or Jeremy Corbyn, talks seriously about investigating, prosecuting  or jailing PFI  fraudsters — let alone  recovering the proceeds of crime.

I asked Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell’s office to contribute to this piece but I have been told to wait till later in the campaign for their PFI policy.

PFI Schools

Last week Jonathan Owen wrote the following piece on the exorbitant cost of PFI schools for the Times Educational Supplement (possibly paywalled):

Here is the shorter form article (not paywalled):

Neither piece names the firms who have been getting rich by overcharging the taxpayer.

However Jonathan Owen  hasn’t always been shy about naming greedy PFI contractors (this from 2015) :

But no names were mentioned in 2016 either:

Interserve strikes Back

Interserve are one of the profiteering PFI firms — it was announced today that  they’ve just won contracts to build more schools in Leeds and South Wales.

Interserve Healthcare Services

Interserve were also heading the consortium to take over Cancer services in Stoke:

But that appears to have just fallen through:

Dexter Whitfield

Dexter Whitfield – PFI researcher and expert – made the following statement:

The TES article on the operational costs of PFI school contracts again highlight the financial scams employed by PFI contractors to maximise their profits at the expense of education and healthcare.
But it also exposes the fundamental structural and financial flaws in PFI projects which have become an albatross for schools and hospitals – high debt burden, offshore profiteering and weak accountability. Interserve’s new PFI schools contract in Wales illustrates how PFI rolls on unabated.
We cannot continue to expose the flaws in PFI, have a review and do nothing. More radical action is essential for which there is wide public support. The public cost of PFI buyouts, bailouts and terminations plus the extra cost of private finance and higher PFI transaction costs is £28bn – enough to build 1,520 new secondary schools for two million pupils(1).
I strongly recommend the People v Barts PFI campaign proposal to nationalise the Special Purpose companies that build and operate PFI projects be supported and developed by the Labour Party (2).