Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Bill of Rights proposed

Future Britain is a new initiative, from a broad coalition, to push for a bill of rights and to protect personal liberty. not until Feb but will come back to this.

Children 'put at risk' after nurseries are allowed to operate without inspections

I cetainly hope that this doesn't apply to Wales from The Observer

Nurseries will be able to operate for up to 10 years without being inspected under government plans to cut red tape and reduce costs.

The Department for Education is ready to waive the requirement for creches or other establishments looking after children of up to six or seven to be inspected before being put on the national Childcare Register. Checks by Ofsted are also to be cut back. Experts said that nurseries would be able to register by simply filling out a form.

Ned Temko, chief political correspondent
Sunday December 17, 2006


Criticism on closure of creche at hospital

HOSPITAL managers who held up their on-site creche as a model childcare facility were criticised yesterday for allowing it to close. ..The creche at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd, in Bodelwyddan, in North Wales, was vaunted by hospital managers as an example of their forward thinking and good practice... ic Wales, UK - 30 Dec 2006

Chores reduce breast cancer risk!

Hope this is for real or were the researchers blokes?

Study: Chores reduce breast cancer risk
Science Daily (press release) - 29 Dec 2006
LONDON, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- Women who exercise by doing housework can reduce their risk of breast cancer, a British study said. The Cancer Research UK research ...
Housework wards off breast cancer
PakTribune.com, Pakistan - 18 hours ago
ISLAMABAD: Women who keep their homes clean and tidy are less likely to develop breast cancer than those who let the dust and dishes pile up, according to a ...
Household chores cut women’s breast cancer risk
Zee News, India - 30 Dec 2006
London, Dec 30: Women who exercise by doing housework can reduce their risk of breast cancer, according to a new study. The research on more than 200000 ...

Friday, December 29, 2006

Academy latest report

Academy conflict of interest denial
Dec 28 2006
The Government has denied claims that a 'conflict of interest' is threatening South Wales' chances of ...
they continue to suport this and no questions asked. Is it jobs at any price? Ethical or not?

See previous post for background

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Asbo attack as Gov tells councils to Persecute youth or else!

Antisocial behaviour crackdown a gimmickGuardian Unlimited, UK - 4 hours agoMinisters were accused today of failing to get to grips with antisocial behaviour after plans were revealed to give 40 areas with the worst problems extra ...

But in Wales the Welsh Assembly government polciy is different. Will they with stand the pressure and take a lead!

"Pevention is better than cure and they should be regarded very much as a last resort" says Edwina Hart and should only be invoked when all other means of curbing the nuisance behaviour have been.
Two of the Welsh Chief Constables responded to a request from the Minister for their views on the effectiveness of ASBOs; “There is a danger that ASBOs will be held up as a panacea to crime problems and this gives a false impression to the public who are then encouraged to look upon the numbers of ASBOs as an indicator of success. ASBOs should only be seen as one element in a menu of options.“

Historical equivalents of 'anti-social behaviour'

Rising fear of youth crime saw 'ungovernable' or 'incorrigible' children ordered into a reform programme as far back as 1806, according to archive material made available by the young people's charity Rainer.

The historical equivalent of 'anti-social behaviour' saw children as young as nine referred to the Philanthropic Society in an attempt to reform them before they became involved in crime.


Will McMahon, of think-tank the Crime and Society Foundation, says that government is moving social policy backwards in two ways: first, through the re-emergence of the “problem family”, a concept stemming from the 1950s which blames families themselves for their social problems; second, by the sense of déjà vu that long-serving social care professionals will feel as a result of the government’s approach. “The government is repeating the cycle of analysis by Sir Keith Joseph, Conservative social services minister in the 1970s, which is that problem families are the source of all our problems,” McMahon says.

Is it value for money?
Again the government for a few cherry-picked offences -hat they say in "trailblazer" areas it has pumped in a lot of money - crime and the perception of crime has gone down a tiny amount!


What they say in other countries!
No respect for Blair's respect zonesIndependent Online, South Africa - 7 hours agoLondon - The British government was accused on Wednesday of failing to get to grips with anti-social behaviour after plans were revealed to give special ...



Vote for the most dangerous piece of legislation to be trashed!

Please support this and vote!
Calling all Liberty supporters to support peaceful protest and defend the Human Rights Act
BBC Today 'Christmas Repeal', vote:
BBC Radio 4 is currently running 'The Christmas Repeal' vote, asking listeners to nominate what they think is Britain's least useful and most damaging piece of legislation. The 'winning' law will be announced on New Year's Day, from a shortlist of six. On Friday 15th December, Liberty Director, Shami Chakrabarti, appealed to listeners to make section 133 of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 (SOCPA), their vote. While
Liberty is delighted that SOCPA has made the shortlist, worryingly, the Human Rights Act 1998 has also gained a place.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

‘5p an hour women shame UK stores’

From war on want... Kumars star Meera Syal backs regulation call over Primark, Tesco and Asda
Workers in Bangladesh are regularly working 80 hours a week for just 5p an hour, in potential death trap factories, to produce cheap clothes for British consumers of Primark, Tesco and Asda’s ‘George’ range See more here

Monday, December 18, 2006

Opposing Prostitution As a Form of Male Violence: the Swedish Model

In just five years Sweden has dramatically reduced the number of women in prostitution. In the capital city of Stockholm, the number of women in street prostitution has been reduced by two thirds, and the number of "johns" has been reduced by 80%
http://www.prostitutionresearch.com/
Opposing Prostitution As a Form of Male Violence: the Swedish Model

Marie De Santis is director of the Women's Justice Center/Centro de Justicia Para Mujeres, 250 Sebastopol Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95407; 707/575-3150, rdjustice@monitor.net,
www.justicewomen.com
© Marie De Santis, though the copyright holder urges anyone to reprint the article with the credit and text intact.

In the fog of clichés despairing that "prostitution will always be with us," one country's success stands out as a beacon lighting the way. In just five years Sweden has dramatically reduced the number of women in prostitution. In the capital city of Stockholm, the number of women in street prostitution has been reduced by two thirds, and the number of "johns" has been reduced by 80%. There are other major Swedish cities where street prostitution has all but disappeared. Gone too, for the most part, are the infamous Swedish brothels and massage parlors which proliferated during the last three decades of the twentieth century, when prostitution in Sweden was legal.

In addition, the number of foreign women now being trafficked into Sweden for sex work is almost nil. The Swedish government estimates that in the last few years only 200 to 400 women and girls have been annually sex trafficked into Sweden, a figure that's negligible compared to the 15,000 to 17,000 females yearly sex trafficked into neighboring Finland. No other country, nor any other social experiment, has come anywhere near Sweden's promising results.

By what complex formula has Sweden managed this feat? Amazingly, Sweden's strategy isn't complex at all. Its tenets, in fact, seem so simple and so firmly anchored in common sense as to immediately spark the question, "Why hasn't anyone tried this before?"

Sweden's Groundbreaking 1999 Legislation

In 1999, after years of research and study, Sweden passed legislation that
a) criminalizes the buying of sex, and b) decriminalizes the selling of sex. The novel rationale behind this legislation is clearly stated in the government's literature on the law:

"In Sweden prostitution is regarded as an aspect of male violence against women and children. It is officially acknowledged as a form of exploitation of women and children and constitutes a significant social problem... gender equality will remain unattainable so long as men buy, sell, and exploit women and children by prostituting them."

In addition to the two-pronged legal strategy, a third and essential element of Sweden's prostitution legislation provides for ample and comprehensive social service funds aimed at helping any prostitute who wants to get out, and additional funds to educate the public. As such, Sweden's unique strategy treats prostitution as a form of violence against women in which the men who exploit by buying sex are criminalized, the mostly female prostitutes are treated as victims who need help, and the public is educated in order to counteract the historical male bias that has long stultified thinking on prostitution. To securely anchor their view in firm legal ground, Sweden's prostitution legislation was passed as part and parcel of the country's 1999 omnibus violence against women legislation.

An Early Obstacle

Interestingly, despite the country's extensive planning prior to passing the legislation, during the first few years of this novel project -- nothing much happened at all. Police made very few arrests of johns, and prostitution in Sweden, which had previously been legalized, went on pretty much as it had gone on before. Naysayers the world over responded to the much-publicized failure with raucous heckling, "See? Prostitution always has been, and it always will be."

But eminently secure in the thinking behind their plan, the Swedes paid no heed. They quickly identified, then solved the problem. The hang-up, the place where their best efforts had snagged, was that law enforcement wasn't doing it's part. The police themselves, it was determined, needed in-depth training and orientation to what the Swedish legislature already understood profoundly. Prostitution is a form of male violence against women. The exploiter/buyers need to be punished, and the victim/prostitutes need to be helped. The Swedish government appropriated the funds for the country's police and prosecutors, from the top ranks down to the officer on the beat, to be given intensive training and a clear message that the country meant business. It was then that the country quickly began to see unequaled results.

Today, not only do the Swedish people continue to overwhelmingly support their country's approach to prostitution (80% of people in favor according to national opinion polls), but the country's police and prosecutors have also come around. They are now among the legislation's staunchest supporters. Sweden's law enforcement community has found that the prostitution legislation benefits them in dealing with all sex crimes, particularly in enabling them to virtually wipe out the element of organized crime that plagues other countries where prostitution has been legalized or regulated.

The Failure of Legalization and/or Regulation Strategies

This Swedish experiment is the only example, in a significant-sized population, of a prostitution policy that works. In 2003, the Scottish government in looking to revamp its own approach to prostitution, enlisted the University of London to do a comprehensive analysis of outcomes of prostitution policies in other countries. In addition to reviewing Sweden's program, the researchers chose Australia, Ireland, and the Netherlands to represent various strategies of legalizing and/or regulating prostitution.

The researchers did not review the situation where prostitution is criminalized across the board as it is in the US. The outcome of that approach is already well known. The futility of the revolving door of arresting and re-arresting prostitutes is familiar the world over.

In the states under review that had legalized or regulated prostitution, the University of London study found, the negative consequences were just as discouraging or even more discouraging than the traditional all-around criminalization. In each case the results were dramatically negative.

According to the study, legalization and/or regulation of prostitution led to:

* A dramatic increase in all facets of the sex industry;
* A dramatic increase in the involvement of organized crime in the sex industry;
* A dramatic increase in child prostitution;
* An explosion in the number of foreign women and girls trafficked into the region, and;
* Indications of an increase in violence against women.

In the state of Victoria, Australia, where a system of legalized, regulated brothels was established, there was such an explosion in the number of brothels that it immediately overwhelmed the system's ability to regulate them, and just as quickly these brothels became mired in organized crime, corruption, and related crimes. In addition, surveys of the prostitutes working under systems of legalization and regulation find that the prostitutes themselves continue to feel coerced, forced, and unsafe in the business.

A survey of legal prostitutes working under the conditions of the Netherlands legalization policy finds that 79% say they want to get out of the sex business. And though each of the legalization/regulation programs promised help for prostitutes who want to leave prostitution, that help never materialized to any meaningful degree. In contrast, in Sweden, the government followed through with ample social service funds to help those prostitutes who wanted to get out. Sixty percent of the prostitutes in Sweden took advantage of the well-funded programs and succeeded in exiting prostitution.*

So Why Hasn't Anyone Tried This Before?

With Sweden's success so clearly lighting the way, why aren't others quickly adopting the plan? Both Finland and Norway are on the verge of making the move. If Scotland takes the advice of its own study, it will go in that direction, too. But the answer to the question of why other countries aren't jumping to adopt Sweden's plan is probably the same as the answer to the question of why governments haven't tried Sweden's solution before.

In order to see prostitutes as victims of male coercion and violence it requires that a government first switch from seeing prostitution from the male point of view to the female point of view. And virtually all countries of the world still see prostitution, and every other issue, from a predominantly male point of view.

Sweden, in contrast, has led the way in promoting equality for women for a very long time. For example Sweden criminalized rape in marriage in 1965. Even in the 1980's there were states in the United States that still hadn't made that fundamental recognition of a woman's right to control her own body. The Swedish government also stands out in having the highest proportion of women at all levels of government. In 1999, when Sweden passed its groundbreaking prostitution legislation, the Swedish Parliament was composed of nearly 50% women.


Sweden's prostitution policy was first designed and lobbied for by Sweden's organization of women's shelters and was then fostered and fought for by a bipartisan effort of Sweden's uniquely powerful and numerous female parliamentarians. In 2002, Sweden passed additional legislation bolstering the original prostitution legislation. The 2002 Act Prohibiting Human Trafficking for the Purpose of Sexual Exploitation closed some of the loopholes in the earlier legislation and further strengthened the government's ability to go after the network of persons that surround and support prostitution, such as the recruiters, the transporters, and the hosts.

And Why Can't We Copy Sweden's Success Here?

While it's probably true that we and other countries are still much more steeped in patriarchy than Sweden, there's no reason we can't push now for the policy changes that Sweden has made. The beauty of it is that since the ground has been broken and the proof of success has been established, it should be ever much easier to convince others to follow.

* The full Scottish government report on prostitution policies can be seen at www.scottish.parliament.uk/business/committees/lg/inquiries/ptz/lg04-ptz-res-03.htm.
See also www.prostitutionresearch.com for additional research and activism ideas.

Why hasn’t the law been reversed to criminialise buying rather than selling sex?

Brothels and safe red light areas are the only way forward
Katharine Raymond is right to argue that we need a complete rethink of the laws protecting Britain's sex workers. She helped prepare a government paper on this 2 years ago but the recommendations were watered down because of opposition from Blunkett and Tony Blair, who were terrified of a hostile media response and put their own interests first.

December 17, 2006
The Observer
The problem is that current strategy on prostitution was forensically examined just two years ago. I helped prepare a government paper called 'Paying the Price' which described our laws as 'outdated, confusing and ineffective', and called for people's views on legalised brothels, registration for prostitutes and local-authority sponsored red light zones. But it did not work in the way we had hoped. In Whitehall, only a handful of politicians and officials wanted the report to see the light of day. At the Home Office we were divided between those eager to publish - and be damned if necessary - and those wanting the whole issue to go away.
In the end, and despite opposition from a No 10 terrified of a hostile media response, the 'damned' won, not least because the then Home Secretary, David Blunkett wanted what he called 'a grown-up debate'. In January this year the government finally came up with a watered-down series of proposals that took a small step in the right direction - a change of rules allowing prostitutes to work together, a crackdown on kerb crawlers and new methods to help women addicted to class-A drugs. Almost a year later, even these mild measures have not been enacted.

For history see - The Prostitution Strategy, including a summary of the responses received to the Government's consultation, is published today and is available at
http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/documents/cons-paying-the-price (new window), or from the Home Office Press Office. The then Home Secretary first announced the Prostitution Review in July 2004. A four month consultation period resulted in over 800 responses to the Home Office.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Thousands of children to spend christmas behind bars

Barnardo's: Figures reveal that nearly 3000 children in England and Wales will spend ... organisation's activities by subscribing to a campaign site within politics.co.uk ...Politics.co.uk - London,UK...

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Solicitor calls for ban on Japanese dog breed


A CAMPAIGNING Welsh solicitor has called on the Government to ban an exotic breed of dog after they were involved in a spate of attacks on children.
Original post:
Solicitor calls for ban on Japanese dog breed (icWales) by Copyright (c) 2004 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved. at Yahoo! News Search Results for list dog breed By List dog breed (list-dog-breed)

Rape Appeal from Fawcett Society


Less than 15% of rapes are reported. Only 1 in 5 reported rapes make it to court and only 6% result in conviction. Support Fawcett's campaign - pledge your support or make a donation and help get justice for women.Rape Appeal

Move over Barbie, this doll gets real about anatomy


An increasingly popular doll with genitalia and pubic hair offers an alternative to Barbies for a gift that can educate about sexuality without damaging body image.
Move Over Barbie, This Doll Gets Real About Anatomy
Courtney E. Martin, Women's eNews

Courtney E. Martin is a writer, teacher and filmmaker living in Brooklyn. You can read more about Courtney's work at
www.courtneyemartin.com

Breast Feeding Manifesto

Breast feeding manifesto

It is amazing that in 2006 in Wales we need to campaign for a breast feeding manifesto especially as we have so many women in the Welsh Assembly Government. See Breastfeeding militants show you how to do it!

There is a website decicated to this campaign where you can personally sign-up to the Manifesto, and be kept in the loop about how things are progressing with the Manifesto and be informed of further ways in which you might wish to get involved.

Alison Baum Co-founder, Breastfeeding Manifesto Coalition says "By adding your name and details below they will be able to demonstrate the high level of grass-roots support that the Breastfeeding Manifesto has. This will be important to parliamentarians and policy makers - put simply, your voice counts.

Click here to add your support to the Manifesto

• You can encourage friends, family and contacts to sign-up and get involved.Click here to email friends, colleagues and family

• Crucially you can lobby your MP to add their support to the Breastfeeding Manifesto. We would therefore urge you to please email your MP about the Manifesto as soon as possible, asking him/her to add their name to it. MP, MEPs and AMs must be responsive to their constituents, so your time writing or emailing could make all the difference. To make life easier for you we have created the capability for you to email your own MP directly from this website:"
Click here to email your local MP


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Ms Hutt supporting biggest ever PFI military academy to improve electoral chances of her party?

'No hitches' on academy decision Dec 1 2006
Peter Collins, South Wales Echo

There will be no 'last-minute hitches with the Treasury' to delay a decision on where a multi-billion military training academy will be built. Vale of Glamorgan MP John Smith and AM Jane Hutt were assured everything was on schedule at a meeting with the Government minister who will make the final decision.
Mr Smith and Ms Hutt met Defence Minister Derek Twigg at the Ministry of Defence, in London, yesterday, in the final push to bring the £14bn academy contract to RAF St Athan.
The Metrix consortium's bid to building the academy in South Wales is up against a bid by RAF Cosford, in the West Midlands.

Is this the same deal "Watchdog sniffs around Qinetiq's bid for billion-pacound defence deal" 11/12/2006. Under Qinetiq's plan, training for the armed forces would be transferred from sites in the West Midlands to a new academy in south Wales.But with elections in Wales due next year, critics also argue that Labour will give Qinetiq the contract to protect its constituencies in the region. "There also is some concern that politics will play a role here," said Pritchard. "The Welsh elections and the personal political ambitions of Peter Hain [the secretary of state for Wales and potential deputy prime ministerial candidate] may not be an insignificant factor in the overall decision (see more below)
At the same time PCS say "With over 20, 000 MoD jobs under threat from either job cuts or privatisation, 95% of members voting endorsed a campaign plan which includes the threat of industrial action. The indicative ballot result comes as the MoD seek to axe 14, 000 civilian posts across the country in areas including aviation repair, army repair, defence logistics and the defence supply chain. Massive privatisation of key areas of defence worth billions of pounds is also planned, including defence training and IT."
http://www.labournet.net/ukunion/0606/pcs1.html

http://www.epsu.org/IMG/pdf/Sector_by_Sector_detail_-_PCS_supplementary_paper.pdf

Biggest ever PFI Military Academy Wales

Watchdog sniffs around Qinetiq's bid for billion-pound defence deal 11/12/2006
http://www.publicprivatefinance.com/Document.aspx?ID=709565
The National Audit Office (NAO) could expand its investigation into the privatisation of defence contractor Qinetiq in order to examine whether the company's bid for a £10 billion defence private finance initiative contract created a conflict of interest.

The Ministry of Defence should choose a firm this month to lead its 30-year defence training programme, the UK's largest ever PFI scheme.

And a consortium led by Qinetiq, 19% owned by the ministry, is the hot favourite for the contract.But critics argue that this creates a clear conflict of interest because the government would benefit if Qinetiq wins.And Conservative MP for The Wrekin in Shropshire, Mark Pritchard, has written to the NAO, already looking into Qinetiq's privatisation, to scrutinise its bid."Most independent commentators have at least raised an eyebrow," he said. "But many are saying that there is a clear conflict of interest."And I would not be surprised if there was a legal challenge on these grounds if Qinetiq wins."

Under Qinetiq's plan, training for the armed forces would be transferred from sites in the West Midlands to a new academy in south Wales.But with elections in Wales due next year, critics also argue that Labour will give Qinetiq the contract to protect its constituencies in the region."There also is some concern that politics will play a role here," said Pritchard. "The Welsh elections and the personal political ambitions of Peter Hain [the secretary of state for Wales and potential deputy prime ministerial candidate] may not be an insignificant factor in the overall decision."Pritchard also asked the NAO to clarify whether the massive £10 billion contract will be recorded on the government's balance sheet.Less than half the total number of initiative deals are included in the Treasury's accounts.

Biggest ever PFI Military Academy Wales

Watchdog sniffs around Qinetiq's bid for billion-pound defence deal 11/12/2006
http://www.publicprivatefinance.com/Document.aspx?ID=709565
The National Audit Office (NAO) could expand its investigation into the privatisation of defence contractor Qinetiq in order to examine whether the company's bid for a £10 billion defence private finance initiative contract created a conflict of interest.

The Ministry of Defence should choose a firm this month to lead its 30-year defence training programme, the UK's largest ever PFI scheme.

And a consortium led by Qinetiq, 19% owned by the ministry, is the hot favourite for the contract.But critics argue that this creates a clear conflict of interest because the government would benefit if Qinetiq wins.And Conservative MP for The Wrekin in Shropshire, Mark Pritchard, has written to the NAO, already looking into Qinetiq's privatisation, to scrutinise its bid."Most independent commentators have at least raised an eyebrow," he said. "But many are saying that there is a clear conflict of interest."And I would not be surprised if there was a legal challenge on these grounds if Qinetiq wins."

Under Qinetiq's plan, training for the armed forces would be transferred from sites in the West Midlands to a new academy in south Wales.But with elections in Wales due next year, critics also argue that Labour will give Qinetiq the contract to protect its constituencies in the region."There also is some concern that politics will play a role here," said Pritchard. "The Welsh elections and the personal political ambitions of Peter Hain [the secretary of state for Wales and potential deputy prime ministerial candidate] may not be an insignificant factor in the overall decision."Pritchard also asked the NAO to clarify whether the massive £10 billion contract will be recorded on the government's balance sheet.Less than half the total number of initiative deals are included in the Treasury's accounts.

Commercialisation of childhood

In Parliament, Helen Goodman MP has tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM) in support of the campaign. Tom watson MP hasn't signed it However You can read the EDM and check if your MP has signed it at: http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=32112&SESSION=885

Goodman, Helen
That this House notes that the child-oriented market in the UK is now worth £30 billion and has laid roots in every aspect of children's lives; further notes that marketing to children has been deeply implicated in the rise in children's mental health, behavioural, learning and physical health problems and in family conflicts; welcomes the launch of the Commercialisation of Childhood campaign co-ordinated by Compass; and urges hon. Members, parents, teachers and everybody interested in the future of UK society to read the launch report, consider the scope, intensity and effects of marketing to children and join the debate on how to let children be children before they are consumers.


You can support the campaign by lobbying your MP to sign the EDM if they haven’t already.

Information on how to contact your MP can be found at
http://www.upmystreet.com/commons/l/

Tom Watson has a mind like a parachute!

More rubbish in yet another comment from from Tom Watson MP! I would say to Tom - a mind is like a parachute. If it doesn't open, you're fucked!”
Tom says "A little bit more explanation is required I see. T... A little bit more explanation is required I see. The quote comes from Folwer's Modern English Usage. It explains the use of irony in the English Language.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fowler%27s_Modern_English_Usage Do let me know if you need more help with comprehension."

Jack Nicholson said My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son of a bitch just as you Tom don't see the irony in mocking TB & cronies.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tom Watson MP talks gobblegook. so sad!

tom watson has left a new comment on your post "Tom Watson MP is so sad!":

Irony is a form of utterance that postulates a double audience, consisting of one party that hearing shall hear & shall not understand, & another party that, when more is meant than meets the ear, is aware both of that more & of the outsiders’ incomprehension. You have a nice day now.

Absolute gobblegook Tom so nothing new there then!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Why Child benefit is NEVER nonsense

The Observer, UK -... The Chancellor is also planning to introduce child benefit for all expectant mothers in the 29th week of pregnancy from 2009. This .....Child benefit extension is nonsense ................

Child benefit is much easier to claim than tax credits, and because it is not means tested there is no stigma attached. Its take-up is therefore much greater, so a pragmatist would say this move ensures more of the poorest mothers will actually get help with the costs of having a baby.

...So here we have a woman taking nonsense. That is what the tax system is for. Would you have Jordan, Posh, Davina prevented from sending their chldren to a state school, prevented from going to the local doctors surgery and kept out of NHS hospitals etc?

Women fought so hard and long to keep child benefit as a right for all and exempted from means testing. It has been terribly eroded over the years, however did this woman journalist realise that many women may have wealthy husbands but rely on child benefit to get by.

Gordon's little secret - there's nothing for his successor to ...
The Observer, UK -
... somewhere at a future date. Pregnant women have been promised that they will start to receive child benefit - but not until 2009. ..

Saturday, December 9, 2006

Tom Watson MP is so sad!

Tom Watson - Labour MP [ 9-Dec-06 11:42am ]

Can you nominate worse websites than these?

Girl power he just doesn't understand as none are soooo desparate! He says.........

"My apologies, the comments section is down again but whilst you're here, take a look at "the small but expanding group of girls" who support Alan Milburn. When you've seen Alan's site, why not drop by at the Tony Blair fan club or view the 7,500 photos at the International fan site (just touch Tony to enter). Then there's "My little Tony" and United.



School marm Bossy Blears warns you!


Blears says Tories can win with a 1.3% swing. Eh?

Is the Labour chair in danger of “crying wolf”?

Bossy women are a scourge to woman kind... the sooner this woman stops hectoring us all the better. Saturday, December 9th, 2006

Former toady Chris Bryant

Private eye reports that Chris Bryant is to get £10,000 from the guardian over a spoof on line diary parodying his ulta-moderistist blather which was on the guardian website during last months labour conference!! Even though the guardian apologised! He is also capable of defaming himself by posing on internet chatrooms in his y-fronts say!!! ..without any help from cruel parodists!

If you know of any greedy arrogant men and want to comment! Feel free!

Former toady Chris Bryant

Private eye reports that Chris Bryant is to get £10,000 from the guardian over a spoof on line diary parodying his ulta-moderistist blather which was on the guadian websited during last months labour conference!!

Friday, December 8, 2006

Birthrate harms poverty goals

BBC News, UK -
By Richard Black. The UN's Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are "difficult or impossible to meet" without curbing population growth ...Birth rate 'harms poverty goals'

Government Scrooge Leaves a Fuel Poverty Christmas Present in Wales - Williams

Commenting on the freeze of the winter fuel payments, Roger Williams, Welsh Liberal Democrat MP for Brecon & Radnorshire, said:

“The level of fuel poverty in Wales has doubled since 2004 and is set to hit one in four households in Wales this winter – 300,000 households in total. The Government’s ten year freeze on winter fuel payments is dangerous scrooge like behaviour.

“15,000 extra people died in Wales during the cold winter months, especially pensioners and yet the winter fuel allowance will not pay the average Welsh pensioners fuel bill from the beginning of advent until twelfth night.

“The Government must wake up and do far more to stop the spread of fuel poverty in Wales before it gets out of hand.”

For more information click here to visit his website.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Save the children’s response to Browns pre-budget report

Although welcoming some aspects of today's pre-budget report, Save the Children has described it 'a missed opportunity'.

Colette Marshall, UK Director of Save the Children, said: “While the announcement of extra child benefit to pregnant women, monitoring of the minimum wage, and greater investment in education is welcome, it is not enough.

"There are few chances left for the Chancellor to act decisively to meet the target of halving child poverty by 2010.

"The time for rhetoric is over, we need to start hearing how the Government is going to target the poorest families - whether through making child benefit equal for all children, introducing seasonal grants to help poor families at the most difficult times of year or helping low income families with their fuel bills.

"It is only through major, practical steps like these that the Government will stand a hope in achieving its ambition of ending child poverty."

As a member of the campaign to End Child Poverty Save the Children believes the Chancellor must invest a further £4 billion to halve child poverty by 2010.

Find out more at www.savethechildren.org.uk/endchildpoverty

A million UK children missing out

Save the children wants you to write to your MP

CAMPAIGN TO END CHILD POVERTY IN THE UK

The UK has one of the worst rates of child poverty in the industrialised world.

We are calling for more realistic resources for the poorest children in the UK. Find out more

A million children in the UK are growing up in severe poverty. It's unfair, unjust and damaging their lives.

Please write to the Chancellor of the Exchequer and Chief Secretary to the Treasury asking them to lift the UK's poorest children out of poverty by:

  • - Introducing seasonal grants in winter and summer holidays when low-income families struggle the most
  • - In the run up to the Comprehensive Spending Review 2007, investing an extra 0.3% of GDP to be spent on ending severe child poverty.


Children put off walking by 'strangers'

Thursday, 07 Dec 2006 08:12
Schoolchildren are discouraged from making small trips on foot by the fear of 'stranger danger', a new survey says.

Two-thirds of children told researchers that they were worried about coming into contact with potentially-dangerous people they did not know while out on their own or with friends.

In addition, three-quarters of parents said they were anxious about letting their children walk by themselves over the same issue.

The authors of the study published in Archives of Disease in Childhood, a daughter title of the British Medical Journal, say that children should be encouraged to walk as often as possible to boost exercise levels and address the problem of childhood obesity.

Other reasons cited by the nine to 11-year-old respondents in the test, which was conducted in areas in and around Birmingham, for getting a lift from parents or using public transport included a lack of green and recreational areas, as well as rising traffic levels.

Of the 473 children involved in the study, almost two-thirds made less than 20 trips on foot every week.

Claiming that the lifelong patterns of physical activity are established at a young age, the study's authors conclude: "Our findings suggest that perceptions of the local environment are related to walking levels in children."

The researchers also discovered that children from ethnic minorities were more likely to get around by another mode of transport than on foot.

Make St Davids day a holiday!

'We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Proclaim St David's Day as a national holiday in Wales.'

The petition was created by O. A. Jones and reads:

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Ann Clwyd gets the boot

Lloyd voted Labour party chairman

Great news. Got what she deserved after betraying women agianst the war everywhere!

Did our Julie help get rid? i will find out and get back to you.

Former foreign office minister Tony Lloyd has been elected as chairman of the Parliamentary Labour Party, ousting Ann Clwyd from the post.

Mr Lloyd won 169 votes, while Ms Clwyd gained 156. She won last year's chair election with a margin of 11 votes.

Ms Clwyd is the PM's special envoy to Iraq and was seen by some backbenchers as being too close to Tony Blair.

As chairman, Mr Lloyd, an anti-war rebel, will be charged with ensuring ministers know of backbench concern.

In Tuesday's election, 92% of Labour MPs took part.

Ms Clwyd was said to be "extremely upset" following the vote in London.


Sunday, December 3, 2006

Catwalk Ban on skinny models in Italy

Catwalk ban on the skinny model in Italy
Guardian Unlimited, UK -
... Other measures are a minimum age limit of 16 for models and a ban on using ... the wake of the outcry earlier this year over ultra-thin models on the catwalk. ..

Isn't it time this happened here?
Write to you MP.

Has Rhrodri got socialist polices?

This was the usual tick box speech. There is nothing there that you could sell to the already skeptical electorate. No condemnation of privitisation or ‘contestability’ the cuddly version, or voluntary or ‘third’ sector companies or PFI or an end to LHBs seeking tenders for NHS services!

One real policy idea suggested by Rhodri is that the Assembly will set up a Petitions Committee, to guarantee that issues which matter to people up and down Wales get onto their Assembly’s agenda! Wow! Policy making by petition, sooooo unoriginal. Sounds just like Tony Blairs e-petition! http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/ If I do a petition so we can have NHS dentists in Wales what would be my chances of success?

The most acute politicisation of resources concerns that of housing although no mention of it in this speech. The Blair government wants councils in Wales to ‘privatise’ their housing stock and Rhrodri has bowed to pressure – the No Vote in Wrexham and clear indications from other areas show that tenants are overwhelmingly opposed. Housing stock transfer is so discredited that Rhrodri has attempted to disguise the policy by introducing a new fancy wrapper for it, calling it a ‘Community Housing Mutual’. Rhrodri, how about giving councils the same opportunity as presently exists for Housing Associations, to obtain improvement grants to bring housing stock up to standard so “people (WON’T) have to live in local environments which are run-down and in decay”. Do we have to do a petition?

Rhrodri is now environmental friendly too but will he promote greener transport? He is honorary president of the Cardiff Cycling Campaign, but members say he has supported car users since coming to power. In the campaign's annual meeting, the group voted unanimously to remove him - unless he influenced the Assembly's current consultation Welsh Transport Strategy to favour public transport, cycling and walking.

Rhrodri, the wealth gap has got wider, your statement that “Income is now the most equal since 1987” is irrelevant. A study by Paul Donovan of the City firm UBS, found that existing levels of income inequality preserve. The share of income owned by the top 1% of the population in the UK is back to pre-second world war levels. Meanwhile, 60% of people earn less than £20,000 a year, 80% less than £30,000. Those on the lowest incomes tend to suffer higher levels of inflation than those at the top. If you want the voters to trust you some honesty is required.

Rhrodri asks Did New Labour bury Thatcherism and create a new post-war consensus, a millennium consensus and the answer is an obvious no.

Rhrodri should come back with some concrete policies. Denis Healy was quoted in the Observer today “I have always been in politics in order to do something rather than to be something.”

You really must come out of this denial stage, I notice you don’t mention the war! Oh dear!

Saturday, December 2, 2006

End the unfair Council Tax burden

In the run up to Gordon Brown's pre-Budget report later this month, we are calling on the Chancellor to introduce a new £200 payment for all pensioners.
In 2005 the Chancellor made a £200 payment to pensioners, to help them with the increased costs of living, in particular Council Tax. However, in the 2006 Budget this payment was withdrawn, despite the fact that living costs for pensioners have continued to rise well above the rate of inflation.
A recent Help the Aged survey found that at least a quarter of those living on low incomes spent more than 10 per cent of their incomes on Council Tax.

Help send a strong message to the Chancellor asking him to ease the Council Tax burden on older people.

Email Gordon Brown to demand he reintroduce the £200 payment