Thursday, August 21, 2014

Liberal Democrats and Lord Rennard

I hope that in the midst of all this, Lord Rennard is genuinely repentant of his "inappropriate" actions, but the Lib Dem leadership has shown an unwillingness to take this kind of situation seriously other than the cosmetic! The fact that actual decent and hard working Lib Dem activists, such as my cousin in law Stephen, are considering quitting the Party, tells those of us on the outside, a great deal about how seriously or not, the Liberal Democrats are taking allegations of sexual misconduct! I hope that Lord Rennard apologies and is forgiven, as a Christian I think forgiveness is vital, but equally this is not about hounding, this is about holding to account and a political Party showing that they take sexual misconduct allegations seriously! Otherwise not only will they lose a lot of seats at the next election, but also a lot of members!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

James Foley and the Situation in Iraq

Sickening cowardice where his killers are concerned! James Foley was simply a journalist doing his job! But the threat his kidnappers have sent, that they will kill another hostage if President Obama continues with airstrikes, shows them truly for what they are. If they want the airstrikes to stop, then then can simply put pressure from their associates in Iraq to stop murdering civilians who do not want to become Muslims! Their refusal to do so, and unwillingness to disassociate from them shows James Foley's killers for what they are. If they want to see an end to the conflict in Iraq, they stop the violence!

Parish Notice

I might change the look of this blog over the next week or two, just so you know! :-)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Cameron and Iraq

So what is the PM's clear strategy on Iraq?
Where is the air cover, where is the consultation with the Opposition, and the Church of England and other church groups (given ISIS), where are the millitary options? Where is the recall of Parliament?
One is not asking for details, one is asking for proof of strategy, and from what we have seen at the moment there is all talk and no action. And given the genocide going on in Iraq, that is shameful!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What Some Tories Fail To Understand About the Latest Unemployment Figures!

First of all, the latest figures are, in a broad sense, good news! But it does not take away the uncomfortable fact that there is a cost of living crisis, that there is a slow growth in wages, and that many are on zero hour, or limited hour contracts. That does not provide for a long term stable environment, nor does it help spending, or deal with the cost of living crisis. Until we get a substantial no of people into permanent long term jobs that have over sixteen hours a week, then the economy is still in a precarious position and the Conservatives will not get that clear lead in the Polls they are hoping for! The Tory activists who are jumping up and down about the fall in unemployment need to realise that, and if I were a Conservative Party member I would be deeply concerned

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Parliamentary Candidate's Spouse Helping With a Petition

So last Saturday, I thought it was just a day of catching up on paperwork, housework, and going to a friend's birthday party, but when you are the spouse of a Parliamentary Candidate, unless there are some ground rules set where you make sure you do not do anything political from the outset, occasionally you get roped into helping do things!
So it was that that afternoon I was knocking on doors in Hitchin, persuading people to sign a petition urging David Cameron to cut NHS waiting lists with regards to seeing a GP, and making sure that within 48 hours of an appointment being made, a patient can see one! Most people were positive and signed, a few good discussions came from this and many mentioned the concerns and problems they had experienced or knew others had experienced, and then there were the doorbells.
Sometimes, every so often I would come across a doorbell that played a particular tune, sometimes three in a row! It was fascinating to find out if the next doorbell played a tune and certainly helped overcome my concerns about trying to get hold of people on a sunny Saturday afternoon when they would likely be out or relaxing in the garden, or tidying the garden.
All I can say is campaigning may well be tough, it may well be difficult, but hardly dull and boring and always worthwhile!

Gaza and Israel

Everyone has their own take on how to deal with the recent conflict in Gaza, and yet one of the more sensible pieces written on the situation has been from Michael Foster of LabourList
One of the mistakes we sometimes make with regards to armed conflicts around the World, is that sometimes we swiftly judge them by our own cultural background and mores, putting simplistic answers to complex situations and that can worsen the situation. One thinks for example about the conflict in Northern Ireland!
There are a no of things people need to consider with regards to the Israeli conflict if they want to help campaign to alleviate the situation and help defend human rights there. For example:

1) Israel has a right to exist. It is a nation primarily comprised of a race of people who had been denied and forced from their homeland in a situation that lasted nearly 2,000 years. It is recognized by the United Nations, and like all nations it has a right to defend itself and it is under constant threat

2) Hamas has, at the very least in the past, been involved in terrorism and many of it's supporters have pledged to wipe Israel off the political map! It has launched rocket attacks on Israel knowing full well that Israel rarely turns a blind eye in response

That said:

3) Attacking towns and cities to destruction to flush out terrorists, attacking schools etc.. is morally indefensible and wrong, no matter who does it

4) Equally suicide bombing is morally indefensible, and it needs to be constantly known that there are extremists on both sides who do not want peace, but "victory"

In a situation where we are also seeing conflict in the Ukraine and Iraq, and where Christians and the Yazidis are increasingly becoming the victims of genocide, we need to encourage peace in Israel, encourage talks, but with an even handed approach which does not gloss over the sins of one side and heaping every judgement without mercy on the other!

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Cameron Sends Air Force into Iraq

Further to my blogpost yesterday, the UK are sending in aid to those afflicted by Isis in Iraq. They are also looking at the military and security implications. Let us hope and pray this leads to something more concrete!

Friday, August 08, 2014

Isis Persecuting Christians and the Yazidi

When the genocide in Rwanda happened in 1994, the West afterwards, rightfully, beat themselves up for not intervening and doing something about it! On this occasion I am glad the US has decided to intervene in the form of air drops to those under threat, and potential air strikes against those militias who are attempting to commit genocide against Christians and the Yazidis. Those captured have been faced with a choice "Convert or die" and it does not matter to them whether that includes women and children (be warned, the article I have just linked to is not for the faint hearted). The Christians and the Yazidis can either flee Iraq (if they can), but for many they have nowhere to go but stay and face death. The UK must join forces with the US where possible and help prevent that from happening! For those who agree, there is a petition you can sign that will be sent to David Cameron, which you can get here. Please sign!