POLITICS CORNER

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by PanBiker » 03 Apr 2018, 11:59

Tizer wrote:
03 Apr 2018, 09:39
Ian, the size of a party's membership is not a reliable predictor of how well it would do in an election or how effective it would be at governing the country. Even 600,000 is only a small proportion of UK voters. The vast majority don't join a political party. Some parties are more geared up to gaining support by people joining them like a club, others depend more on those who are not going to join parties even if they will vote for them.
Indeed and I am fully aware of that. The massive rise in Labour Party membership is more of an indicator of support for Jeremy Corbyn and of course the socialist polices he is putting forward to the electorate. The same cannot be said for any of the other political parties. The fact of the matter is that the Tories and in many cases the majority of the media are terrified that they will loose out big style in funding and backhanders that they get paid to keep the bile going. Today's reports of JC attending a Jewish group meeting last night, he cant do right for doing wrong according to the media, they were the wrong kind of Jews!
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 04 Apr 2018, 03:23

Tiz, you are quite right but so is Ian. The Tories would love to have a fraction of that membership. Biggest in Europe they tell me and it must be a sign of something......
The Policy Wonks at Downing Street have done it again. They took an isolated fact, built a flawed edifice on it and used it to Wrap Theresa in the flag. Great stuff until the Director of Porton Down points out that they never made any guesses about origins, just stated what the poison was. I do believe I forecast something like this. Putin is a very happy man, My and all who supported her now have egg on their faces. They now have to either apologise or bluster. No prizes for guessing which it will be......
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 04 Apr 2018, 08:01

"Oh, what a tangled web we weave
When first we practise to deceive!"
We now hear that Yulia Skripal is making a recovery but any independent authority has yet to talk to her. I guess we will have to wait until Sergei Skripal either recovers or dies before the official story is told. We don't want them coming up with two different explanations. Meanwhile, the Russians are gaining ground on Mrs May but I still think their suggestion that Porton Down is involved is a bit of wishful thinking. I wonder how long it will be before we hear from our press that Corbyn did it ?

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 04 Apr 2018, 09:46

To be fair to Downing Street and Porton Down there is no other explanation of the Skripals' poisonings with Novichok that comes anywhere close to that of it being the ultimate responsibility of Russia. That's not to say that the person who administered the poison was a Russian, or that he/she belonged to the Russian military or intelligence services, or had a direct line of communication linking them to Putin or the Kremlin etc. The Russians are past masters at indirect attack and covering their tracks. Assassination is routine and they have plenty of `outside' operators to do the dirty work for them. Yes, other countries are known to do such things but none comes near to Russia's level of excellence in the art. Under these circumstances we'll probably never have the type of evidence that everyone calls for. It's rather like climate change - the scientists can never claim to be 100% sure it's due to human activity but we still need to take action because all the evidence we do have points to it. Russia has the motive and the means, this is the way they normally operate and they're used to getting away with it.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 04 Apr 2018, 16:02

Further news on Novichok...It isn't only Downing Street that blames Russia. Later on Wednesday the EU confirmed its view that Russia is responsible for the Skripal poisoning: LINK

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 04 Apr 2018, 18:11

More of the same weasel words. " highly likely that the Russian Federation"... " of a type developed by Russia". Its a big place is the Russian Federation. Anybody could make a variation of a type. All a bit vague with the whole statement looking like a reiteration of Mrs May's presentation to Parliament a month ago. My view is that unless the UK can show some positive links we could gradually slide into a stalemate where everyone is the loser. Gulliver's Travels, Big Endians V Little Endians.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 05 Apr 2018, 02:41

The EU and NATO have been dragged into the same bind, back down or bluster. It may have been a reasonable conclusion that somehow Russia is implicated and I can see the logic of that but it was still wrong in my opinion to go public and say it was the Russkies wot did it!
The Tories have a lot of hostages to fortune out there, don't forget May's forecast of a bright and sunny Brexit. The Two biggest, the Russia story and Brexit are both based on spin and smoke and mirrors. Meanwhile Trump v. China hots up nicely. "Events Dear Boy".......
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 05 Apr 2018, 08:31

From The Times this morning:
`UK locates source of novichok nerve agent used in Salisbury: Security services pinpoint secret Russian lab' LINK
Security services believe that they have pinpointed the location of the covert Russian laboratory that manufactured the weapons-grade nerve agent used in Salisbury, The Times has learnt. Ministers and security officials were able to identify the source using scientific analysis and intelligence in the days after the attempted murder of Sergei and Yulia Skripal a month ago, according to security sources. Britain knew about the existence of the facility where the novichok poison was made before the attack on March 4, it is understood. A Whitehall source added: “We knew pretty much by the time of the first Cobra [the emergency co-ordination briefing that took place the same week] that it was overwhelmingly likely to come from Russia.” Security sources do not claim 100 per cent certainty but the source has insisted that they have have a high degree of confidence in the location. They also believe that the Russians conducted tests to see whether novichok could be used for assassinations.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 05 Apr 2018, 11:52

The secret Russian Laboratory is about as secret as Porton Down. Every newspaper and investigator has aerial and sometimes internal pictures of it. Some even show how much it as changed between 2005 and 2015. So much for secrecy. Even if the basic poison formula was developed at this lab its something on another level to say this particular agent was made there. We are still in the "we believe territory". Its amazing that in the four days between the poisoning and the Cobra meeting we were able to identify the nerve agent and its source when other agencies require over two weeks just to analyse it.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 06 Apr 2018, 04:10

Reading between the lines and thinking beyond the assertions, the most significant thing for me is that the Russians are sticking to the line that it wasn't them. Knowing how sure-footed they have been lately, I have doubts about them denying the truth because they know that eventually it will all become clear and they will make damn sure they are not caught red-handed. Either they are right and it wasn't them or they know they have covered their tracks well enough not to be found out. Either way the accusers are on a sticky wicket and on previous form, I think my money would be on the Russians.....
Once again, let me make it quite clear that I suspect the Russian government is implicated but thoughts aren't enough. The government has gone off half-cocked and could well regret being so eager to rush to a conclusion. Our conduct of international affairs has been terrible of late and if this goes sour as well our reputation will suffer even further.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 06 Apr 2018, 08:43

American and Chinese business analysts interviewed by David Aaronovitch on `The Briefing Room' last night confirmed that Trump's threatened tariffs on Chinese goods will be a disaster for the US, especially for those areas that are the biggest Trump supporters. The Chinese have carefully chosen their response to have the most devastating impact. In fact the analysts believe that Trump will be forced to back down because the tariffs would do so much damage to the US and to his supporters. (But he might be just pig-headed enough to prove them wrong.) Apparently Trump is able to put these tariffs in place without consulting Congress, by using the President's emergency powers and he defines China's trade as an emergency. (It makes you wonder what else he might do with his `emergency powers'.)

The analysts also said that Trump is very bad news for Britain after brexit. With previous presidents we would have been welcomed into trade deals with the US but with Trump it's not going to be like that. His approach to trade will make it much more difficult for brexit Britain to get deals with the US.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 07 Apr 2018, 03:48

The man is like a bull in a china shop. Many commentators are saying that in the long run, his ignorance and the damage he is causing in so many areas will be a good thing because it will encourage alternate views and protest. Rather like T May doing Labour a favour each time she opens her mouth.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 08 Apr 2018, 04:05

Funny how Brexit is no longer a pressing issue...... Go figure!
Amber Rudd has written today in the Daily Telegraph that numbers of police on the streets is not the cause of the recent spike in violence. If that's the case why was the Met's immediate response to put 300 extra police on the streets?
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 08 Apr 2018, 09:00

Boris Johnson calls Jeremy Corbyn the `Kremlin's useful idiot'. I'm not a fan of Corbyn but I regard Johnson's description of him as an idiot as disgraceful and it reflects back on Johnson himself. It shows the awful state of politics now.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 08 Apr 2018, 11:36

Corbyn is 'Kremlin's useful idiot', says Boris Johnson.Link. Its worth remembering that Corbyn has said exactly what Mrs May has said RE:- It is likely that Russia is involved and that they have questions to answer. Therefore the statement of "by refusing to "unequivocally" back the government's view" is in itself false. We can draw the conclusion that since Mrs May and Corbyn are saying the same thing then by implication he must think Mrs May is a useful idiot.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by PanBiker » 08 Apr 2018, 11:47

plaques wrote:
08 Apr 2018, 11:36
We can draw the conclusion that since Mrs May and Corbyn are saying the same thing then by implication he must think Mrs May is a useful idiot.
I think that is a given Plaques, she has taken the poison chalice of brexit and is now in a perfect position of her own making to be stabbed in the back by her own which itself is a bit of a foregone conclusion. "Useful Idiot" sums it up quite well I reckon.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 08 Apr 2018, 15:26

Let's not lower ourselves to the same depths as some of the politicians and national newspapers. Corbyn was more selective and restrained in his words when he responded by saying Johnson was making a fool of himself.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 08 Apr 2018, 18:44

That's the whole point Tizer, the National Newspapers are making the running on this case and stretching the facts from 'plausible' to 'definite'. Mrs May's initial statement used more tempered language and was careful not not to fall into the 'weapons of mass destruction' trap. Boris and the Press on the other hand have got the bit between their teeth and are making wild guesses and using rather intimidating language to avoid a proper discussion. Boris, like it or not, is our Foreign Minister and represents the UK in these sensitive matters. It would be impossible for him now have meaningful discussions with the Russian Minister on what could turn out to be ordinary food poisoning with a dead cat and hamster as a side issue.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 09 Apr 2018, 04:34

There are so many holes appearing in the Novichok story..... May avoided direct statements about Russian involvement at first but was bounced into becoming more aggressive by Boris doing his Donald Trump act. Once that runner was out of the trap it became useful as it was diverting attention from Brexit.
J Corbyn and the Director of Porton Down seem to me to have been amongst the few in the UK that have spoken the truth and kept their heads. I say 'in the UK' because the other person who has sounded logical is Putin and his spokespeople.
Worst case is that it transpires that the Boris version is wildly exaggerated and that opens the way for repercussions from all who have piled in to support T May on the evidence from our intelligence services. It's tempting to see similarities between this and the Iraq/WMD 'crisis' and all that led to.
The bottom line is that we proles do not know the full story, we are in the hands of spin doctors and copy-hungry media. Our Foreign Secretary is a motor mouthed buffoon and not fit to hold office. Our PM is running the country with more attention being paid to survival than the good of the UK. I can't think of a single policy since 2010 that hasn't crashed in flames. This affair is looking no better.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 09 Apr 2018, 08:48

Stanley wrote:
09 Apr 2018, 04:34
I say 'in the UK' because the other person who has sounded logical is Putin and his spokespeople.
I can't let that go by without comment. I disagree. Putin and his spokespeople have claimed a wide range of scenarios ranging from the possible to the downright ridiculous. Also, I'm surprised that OG members are falling so easily into conspiracy theories.
Stanley wrote:
09 Apr 2018, 04:34
Our Foreign Secretary is a motor mouthed buffoon and not fit to hold office.
On the other hand, I'll agree with that sentiment! (And buffoon is more acceptable than idiot.) :smile:

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 09 Apr 2018, 11:42

Hang on Tizer, I don't fall in line about conspiracy theories I invent them. When you have a situation where the Government is letting extreme statements being made and at the same time restricting access to what are or should be the key details then you will encourage all manner of tin pot theories. Just a minor example, here we have one of the most toxic nerve agents ever developed, one which will supposedly kill someone as soon as you looked at it and nobody has died and we are told that the contaminated police office recovered in quick time. Plus 130 people possibly exposed to this agent and no one has any symptoms. The only victims are a cat and hamster that suffered from neglect and had to be put down.
I agree the Russian Foreign Minister has made some similar outlandish statements as though its all one big game. The longer it goes one the less faith I have in anything the government says.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 10 Apr 2018, 03:49

Tiz, calm down dearie! Just because I say that Putin has responded more logically than our bunch doesn't mean I am falling for any conspiracy theories. I am simply sceptical about all of them and have said so. Putin and his spokesmen have made some responses which are equally far fetched but on the whole are more logical than Boris, who told direct lies. I doubt if, when everything is considered in the light of better evidence, Putin is naïve enough to expose himself to being found guilty of that.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 11 Apr 2018, 04:17

I have no idea what the truth is behind the current Russia v. the rest situation. All I know is that it's worrying. Will May do a Blair and join in with Trump or will she go to Parliament? Nothing would surprise me!
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 11 Apr 2018, 06:20

I've just been listening to the chairman of the Foreign Affairs committee of the Bundestag, the German Federal Parliament. He can't see how the UK can square the circle of leaving the EU and maintaining things like our pre-eminence in financial matters. In short he thinks that May's tactics are impossible. Further he says that he has seen no evidence that we have a viable strategy. I agreed with everything he said. I wish our politicians had as firm a grasp on reality......
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 12 Apr 2018, 05:17

It looks as though you are all getting as disillusioned with politics as I am. I don't blame you!
The general opinion is that T May is ready to agree to back the US in action against Asad in Syria without going to Parliament which doesn't reassemble until next week. Corbyn and others call for members to be consulted, question is will May take any notice? Is she looking for a Maggie Thatcher Falklands moment? Has she looked at the dire straits our forces are in at the moment?
It's rather like being a passenger on a plane and putting your faith in the system and the pilots. Problem is is have no faith in either.........
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