Reevesey's recommended reading

Friday, 28 January 2011

Why I'm getting married today!

It is the one question most people have asked, why now, why today?


Ouch, I can't sit like a meerkat for long.

On the 28th July 2009 my Mum was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Mum being Mum (you will soon realise where my stubborn streak comes from) she started to make a list of stuff she wanted to do before her death.

However just six weeks later, she tragically lost her battle with this shit disease - only 3% of people survive for 5 years, pancreatic cancer has the worst survival rate of any cancer -and passed away on the 2nd September 2009.

Ironically, this date was my Dad's birthday - although he left us when I was 15, never to be seen again.

One of the things on Mums list was seeing one of her two kids get married.

Now, if it was down to tossing a coin in the air and picking me or my Sister, the coin probably would never have come back down to earth, amusing us all.

However, if either of us had realised Mum had so little time we also would have done the wedding before, but we didn't know, that was one criticism I had of the staff around Mum (they didn't warn us) - I say one, it's the only criticism I had of the team who looked after her in those final days in hospital - and Daniel was amazing.

So last year, after speaking to my Sister, and me getting down on one knee in our kitchen to propose (he said yes) the wedding was on - and picking the date was easy, we chose my Mums birthday.

Today is one and a half years to the day from when Mum was diagnosed but more importantly today is Mum's birthday - my Sister put Mum's invitation under her memorial tree last night - and during the service Roger and I will light three candles - one for Mum, and then one each for Vera and Buster (Roger's Nan & Grandad).

They are never out of our thoughts and today is no exception.

That's why I'm getting married today.  I love my Mum.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Ed Miliband is forced into a reshuffle Balls-up

Veteran Labour politician  Alan Johnson MP has resigned today as the Shadow Chancellor for personal reasons after just three and a half months.

In a statement, Alan Johnson MP said:
"I have decided to resign from the shadow cabinet for personal reasons to do with my family."
Today's announcement follows several recent gaffes by Alan Johnson when discussing tax and economic matters, including a recent in an interview when didn't know the rate of National Insurance paid by employers!

Rumours are rife in Westminster about why Johnson has gone.  Guido has more details.

So, Ed Miliband is forced into reshuffling his titanic team - Alan Johnson is replaced by Ed Balls, previously the shadow home secretary.  Mr Balls' wife, Yvette Cooper, takes over at home affairs, Douglas Alexander becomes shadow foreign secretary and Tessa Jowell becomes shadow Cabinet Office minister.

So, Balls gets a promotion - Gordon Brown's left hand man gets what he wants.

Liam Byrne, the Labour MP who left a note on his desk in the treasury saying "there is no money left" when Labour were kicked out of Government is made shadow work and pensions secretary.

It is somewhat astounding that someone who can be so flippant finds themselves promoted.

The other strange thing about this new look cabinet, it is just like the Gordon Brown cabinet, full of people denying they had anything to do with forcing us into the position we are in now where we face paying £120million per day in interest alone, enough to build a new school every hour!

Stephen Williams, Co-Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Treasury Committee, commented earlier on the resignation of Alan Johnson MP:

“I wish Alan Johnson good luck for the future.

“The decision to appoint Ed Balls as Shadow Chancellor shows that the Labour Party is now determined to carry on with the Gordon Brown economic plan that caused so much trouble for this country.

“Ed Balls isn’t just a deficit denier, he’s a deficit enthusiast.”
Well done Stephen Williams MP, great line.

Monday, 17 January 2011

New Owner at Edinburgh Capitals - Edinburgh's ice hockey team

This press release hit my inbox late last night.  It was also posted in Forum Jar, nothing yet on the Edinburgh Capitals website or Forum though - not entirely surprising though!

Although it is the only posting in the Edinburgh Capitals forum on forum jar and if you google Roger Soles Media, the provider of the press release, nothing comes up on the first page of google!

So, is this a fan hoping, a complete wind up or a new weird discreet way of announcing major news?

Or just R Soles Media?

When things sound too good to be true, they usually are!

Edinburgh Capitals are delighted to announce a change of ownership.

Edinburgh Capitals new owner, a prominent local businessman with a track record of supporting and developing Edinburgh spectator sport has, after long and detailed negotiations, secured the franchise and the rights to participate in the Elite League. He will be introduced to the current cohort of loyal fans at an already arranged Fans Forum, where the current owner will outline his strategy as Director of Hockey.

The new owner has invested heavily and is committed to a five year plan.

It is intended that a full squad of 7 new top class imports, who have already agreed terms will ice once paperwork and contracts are finalised. They will ice on the first weekend of February after intensive training and familiarisation.

There many exciting developments both on and off ice planned, one of which will be a rebranding of the organisation.

The new team name and logo will be launched in February.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Labour's one trick pony Ed Miliband appeals to Lib Dems (again) - my response

Ed Miliband takes over the leadership of the Labour Party thanks to the Union votes after the Labour MPs and members turned their back on him and he declares this the new generation Labour and that New Labour is dead.

Since then he has denied the last thirteen years happened and blames the Liberal Democrats and Conservative coalition government for absolutely everything he can.

Including the introduction of student tuition fees, the disgraceful 75p pension increase, the complete waste of money introducing ID Cards, the fingerprinting of children, the illegal war in Iraq, doubling the 10p basic rate of income tax, selling off the UKs gold at the lowest price for 20 years, the major tax credit bungle, not standing up to the bankers and leaving us to pay off debts including £120 million per day on interest alone.

Now he has scrapped all of their policies and swapped it for a blank sheet of paper.

He has appealed to Liberal Democrat members and voters to join him and his lack of vision, not once, but four times in as many months.

He claimed today that thousands of Liberal Democrats had joined Labour since May, yet thousands of Liberal Democrats have not left since May, in fact we have seen an increase in our membership so more nonsense from him.

Philip Hammond MP, the Transport Secretary (Conservative) said;
"Most Liberal Democrats understand that we have to address the fundamental economic challenges this country now faces before we can build the progressive society that we all want to live in and until Ed Miliband has a credible plan for dealing with the deficit he's not in a position to make a pitch to anybody,"
That is exactly the point, the other option in May was the supposed rainbow coalition, but Labour included caveats such as they would work with the SNP for example, so that option was doomed before it started.

 Yes, the Liberal Democrats could have not bothered with either party and left the Conservatives to operate as a minority government, but given the childish behaviour of the Labour Party they would have voted against everything they ever proposed meaning nothing would have happened and we would have faced a second general election in 2010.

I don't think the voters would have stood for that either.

Yes, I agree with Nick - going into coalition government was the right way forward for the country and the media and Labourites are gloating over our national poll ratings of 8/9% yet on Thursday night in Oldham East & Saddleworth we once again polled over 30%, not just a poll but real votes in real ballot boxes.

So Ed, we are all getting bored of your repeated requests to join your blank page party, we remember your record over the 13 years despite you repeatedly forgetting about it - you are a one trick pony and your trick of asking Lib Dems to join your party is wearing thin. 

Ed you need a new trick, maybe you should do the same as your Deputy, stay silent and say nothing until you have something to say.

Who reads which newspaper?

Jim Hacker: "Don't tell me about the press. I know exactly who reads the papers":

* The Daily Mirror is read by people who think they run the country;
* The Guardian is read by people who think they ought to run the country;
* The Times is read by people who actually do run the country;
* The Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country;
* The Financial Times is read by people who own the country;
* The Morning Star is read by people who think the country ought to be run by another country;
* And the Daily Telegraph is read by people who think it already is.

Sir Humphrey: "Prime Minister, what about the people who read the Sun?"

Bernard Woolley: Sun readers don't care who runs the country, as long as she's got big tits.


The episode from 14 August 2009 - Steve Punt & Hugh Dennis's "The Now Show":

* The Times is read by the people who run the country;
* The Daily Telegraph is read by the people who think they run the country;
* The Guardian is read by the people who have run the country for the past 12 years and realised they're blown it;
* The Independent is read by people who got to the newsagents after they'd run out of The Guardian and The Times;
* The Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country;
* The Express is read by Marcus Brigstocke to wind himself up;
* The Mirror is read by the people who vote for the people who read the Guardian and have now blown it.
* The Sun is read by people who'll vote for people who'll run the country to suit the people who read the Financial Times while somehow convincing themselves that those people will give a toss about the people who buy The Sun the moment the election's over;
* And The Star is read very ... slowly ... with your lips moving.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Conservative Christian Richard Carvath makes vicious homophobic attack

When Andrew Tibbs tweeted this earlier today to say I was shocked was an understatement.
"Tory @RichardCarvath makes some appalling homophobic comments on his blog The Tories should get rid of him. Pls RT"
This nasty individual has some very vile and disgusting views of gay people and the reason I am linking to his blog is to ensure that the Conservative Party dismiss him completely and that people know of this horrible individual.

Although Richard Carvath stood in the General Election as an independent candidate, he proudly boasts on his blog that he is a member of the Conservative Christian Fellowship, the Christian wing of the Conservative Party.

They should take immediate action and expel him.

I am appalled that Carvath generalises that not only are all gay people perverts in his mind but he also states that all gay people carry disease and have poisonous blood and hints that all gay people are paedophiles!
"Given that homosexual-perverts are generally riddled with disease - from HIV to syphilis to hepatitis etc - as a result of their sodomitical activities, it is entirely right and proper that the National Blood Service refuses to accept their poisonous blood."
I have been subjected to homophobic views many times before but am shocked that Carvath is allowed to put so many of these untrue and misguided thoughts into the public arena, especially the sheer hatred he has.

He goes on to personally attack Matthew Sephton, the Chair of the Conservative Party's LGBT group and although I am in a different party, I am here supporting Matthew.

Personal attacks such as the one by Carvath on Matthew in his blog post are simply not acceptable.

Although I am not religious, I respect other people are but all of the people I know who are religious, not one is homophobic to this extent (yes, some are homophobic), Carvath's views are so right wing and extreme it is appalling.

On the whole blood ban part of the attack by Carvath - poppycock.

To sign the petition and read more about the ban on gay men being able to donate blood, visit the website.

Tweet from Matthew Sephton.

Monday 17th 21:07 - "I can pass on that @DavidBurrowesMP has confirmed that he wrote to that person last month to withdraw #CCF membership"

Matthew has also stated that the post on Carvath's blog, where he claims he re-joined the Conservative Party is wrong because his membership application was returned.

Happy to let you all know the Conservative Party has nothing to do with this particular individual or his vile views.

Nick Clegg's Liberal Democrats in by-election meltdown?

No, we are not. 

Despite the best efforts of the United Kingdom's media pack, the Labour Party with their new leader Ed "I know nothing of the last 13 years" Miliband and even some whingers in our own party to destroy us during the Oldham East & Saddleworth by-election, they failed.  They all failed.

Our share of the vote went up, only a small increase, but it went up.

Am I disappointed?

Of course I am.  I'm gutted for Elwyn Watkins and every single one of the campaign team, who gave their all, trying new techniques and some of the old favourites to take the seat from Labour.

The public never really see and understand the sheer determination and work rate party workers and volunteers put into a by-election - yes, for many of us it does become personal, but that's because we believe. 

We believe in our candidates, we believe in our policies, maybe not all of them but then none of us ever join an organisation because we believe in every aspect of that organisation do we?

I joined the Chelsea FC Supporters Club because I passionately believe in my team, I don't agree with what Roman Abramovich is currently doing at the club, especially getting rid of Wilko or the fact the players have become a little nonchalant.

Politics is exactly the same, I don't agree with some of the policy decisions made now we are in coalition the same as I disagreed with some when I started delivering leaflets twenty plus years ago, but it is a compromise, just like life.

The majority of voters in Oldham East & Saddleworth didn't vote last night and that makes me angry, people have died in this country to ensure we have a vote within our democracy and yet some people never vote - often the loudest complainers afterwards and that is a sad state of affairs.  I hope that changes after May once the referendum on fair votes has taken place, a great step forward in reforming our politics.

The media have been almost obsessed with the Liberal Democrats during this by-election, predicting doom, gloom, the collapse of our vote, the party going into meltdown, Clegg's resignation, the collapse of the coalition, the end of the world.  Okay, not the last one, but that was the general direction of their mood, spiralling downwards.

Once again they were wrong.

When will the media start reporting on the news and using facts not guess work and their own wild predictions?

The Conservatives suffered the worst in this by-election, losing over 7,000 votes since May, a drop of over 13% in the share of the vote.

Also, a note of warning for Ed Miliband who no doubt is going to be smug about the result - just remember Ed, more people voted for the coalition in this by-election than voted for Labour.  You aren't out of the woods yet.

You may have forgotten what Labour did to this great country and the people who live here over the last thirteen years, but they haven't.

The by-election had been called after disgraced former MP, Labour's Phil Woolas was found guilty by two High Court judges of knowingly lying to voters in a last-ditch bid to hold his seat at the General Election.

A mixed week for Miliband - one former MP jailed, one found guilty of fraud and an election hold.

The result of the Oldham East and Saddleworth Parliamentary by-election:

Lab 14,718
LD Elwyn Watkins 11,160
Conservatives 4,481
UKIP 2,029
BNP 1,560
Green 530
Monster Raving Loony 145
English Democrats 144
Bus Pass Elvis 67
Pirate 96
48.06% turnout

Labour HOLD.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Mark Pritchard MP tells Speaker Bercow "You are not fu**ing royalty, Mr Speaker!"

Mark Pritchard MP attended Business Questions, wanted to ask a question and was penalised for nipping to the loo and accused of not being present.

Paul Waugh has the full story in The Waugh Room on Politics Home, it really is an excellent read and will cheer you up no end.

Why won't Eric Illsley MP quit today?

Earlier this week, on Tuesday Eric Illsley, MP for Barnsley Central  pleaded guilty to dishonestly claiming £14,000 of parliamentary expenses.  There were three charges of false accounting, where Illsley admitted to dishonestly claiming payments for insurance, repairs, utility bills and council tax at his second home between 2005 and 2008!

In a statement issued by his office, Eric Illsley said:
"I would like to apologise to my constituents, family and friends, following my court appearance, for the distress and embarrassment caused by my actions that I deeply, deeply regret.

"I have begun to wind down my parliamentary office, following which I will resign from Parliament before my next court appearance.

"I will be making no further comment."
So, former Labour MP (stood in May 2010 as Labour candidate) Eric Illsley is winding down his offices and will resign as an MP before his next court hearing.

Very noble some may say.

But why is he waiting, why not resign now?  Why was yesterday's statement not in fact his resignation announcement?

If you read the BBC's Nick Robinson's article you see very well Eric Illsley's attitude to Parliamentary expenses, and it isn't pretty.

He is the only current sitting MP to have been charged in relation to his expenses.

Former Labour MP David Chaytor is serving an 18-month jail term after pleading guilty to dishonestly claiming expenses.

There is an online petition you can sign calling for Eric Illsley MP to resign immediately, I'm signature 1990, I'm surprised more people have not signed this.
It is an absolute disgrace that these Labour and former Labour MPs have shafted the public for years ripping people off, claiming money they had no right to whatsoever, on top of larger salaries than most of their own constituents earn.
Eric Illsley should resign today and not receive a penny more in salary or expenses.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Oldham East and Saddleworth - a foot soldiers viewpoint

On Monday, three cars, each full of Scottish Liberal Democrats set off from various parts of Edinburgh heading South to Oldham East & Saddleworth to assist Elwyn Watkins to become the next MP for the good people down there.

This is the first Parliamentary by-election for a while where I haven't been part of the core team, ovbiously because of our key elections in May and it has felt odd.

I don't feel guilty though, I've done my fair share including Glasgow East, Glenrothes and Glasgow North East in the last two and a half years since being in Scotland.

However, once dawn had broken and Tebay had provided us with our nourishment we were eager to get on and the one thing that was noticeable as we drove into Oldham, sorry, not noticeable, very bloody obvious was that the Liberal Democrats were winning (hands down) the garden stakeboard battle.

In fact we had counted over twenty before seing any for Labour - which I was somewhat surprised at - UKIP have a few, mainly on pubs but it was definitely the Lib Dems winning overall.

We did spot a couple of random Tory ones during the day and one green, but hundreds of Lib Dem diamonds, all over the place.

So, that was a great motivation and we hadn't yet got to the HQ.  When we arrived there I left colleagues signing in as I went to say hello to my colleagues from the Campaigns Department and activists I know from here, there and everywhere.

WOW, that place was rocking and buzzing, Monday morning and already over 100 keen activists through the doors and more importantly, back out the doors and delivering, no time for tea or coffee!

The rest of the group had a photo while I was quickly catching up with people, then a quick word with my boss and a handshake and hello with Elywn before heading back out onto the streets armed with thousands of leaflets and letters to deliver.

We had been sent out to Shaw, and once again it was the Lib Dems winning the garden stakeboard battle, but also the window poster battle - more evidence of Labour here, but not much more and no sign at all of any other parties.

Once again, like May the people were supporting the Lib Dems, it appears the journalists who have become obsessed with this constant barage of criticism against our party have not made their anger known here.

It's funny though, because the media have become obsessed now with saying if we lose on Thursday then that's a bad day for Nick Clegg - why? 

We don't hold this seat, it is a Labour constituency, so if we don't win then what does it prove?

But, let me ask those journalists this, if we do win, and from what I saw we have an incredibly good chance of doing so, what does that say about the Labour Leader, the choice of the Unions, Ed Milliband?

Again, if we do win it, what does that say about Nick Clegg, the Liberal Democrats and coalition government (the media down South don't get coalitions)?

Anyway, back to the actual campaigning, I spoke with a few people as we were out delivering, no one refused the leaflets although I did have a couple of people check I wasn't from Labour before accepting them and everyone seemed to know or know of Elwyn, a great omen for Thursday.

The leaflet we were delivering was fantastic, I especially enjoyed the bit reminding people what the Labour Party, which Ed Milliband has been part of before leading, he does seem to forget everything that happened pre-May 6th 2010 for some reason.

1997 - Gordon Brown sold off Britain's gold at a twenty year low price
1999 - Labour offer a miserly and insulting 75p increase in pensions
2001 - Labour incompetence leads to a £10 million tax credit bungle
2003 - Labour takes Britian into an illegal war with Iraq
2007 - Labour announce they will double the basic rate of tax from 10p to 20p
2007 - Labour let bankers run riot - we are all paying the price
2008 - £3 billion benefits overpaid

We rally have forgotten some of this stuff and before all the Labourites jump on my back, yes they did introduce some good things over the thirteen years but your own leader seems to have a selective memory at the current time so I'm entitled to select the things I want to select.

Also, let us remember why this by-election is happening, it was called after disgraced former MP Phil Woolas was found guilty by two High Court judges of knowingly lying to voters in a last-ditch bid to hold his seat at the General Election.
And as Liberal Democrat councillor Jackie Stanton said, "It is disappointing that neither Ed Miliband nor the new candidate have apologised for their disgraceful campaign in May."

Very disappointing - same old Labour.

Good luck to Elwyn Watkins on Thursday and to all of my friends and colleagues that are there as well, your hard work and dedication deserves nothing more than a victory, and the people of Oldham East & Saddleworth deserve nothing less than an honest, hard working MP, let us hope for their sake it is Elwyn Watkins.

As I sit and type this at 5am in the morning I am tweeting with a couple of friends who are working on the night shift in Oldham - that is the side of elections the public don't see or realise even.  We are paid, like everyone else for a 37.5 hour week, but not only do we always end up doing way more than that, we work some exceptionally unsocial hours at election time - but we do love our jobs.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Edinburgh Capitals ice hockey team on the turn?

Finally after a period of a few weeks of top players turning their backs on the Edinburgh Capitals and seeking new pastures, news of a new signing reaches the fans this morning.
"Edinburgh Capitals today announced that Ex Capital Scott McKenzie will be signed on a two way contract from English Premier League team Telford Tigers, Scott has been signed as the temporary cover to allow us time to look at other options."
Scott McKenzie will ice tonight when the Capitals face the Newcastle Vipers at Whitley Bay.

At the end of last year Alex Kim, Chris St. Jacques and David Lomas all moved on, and then just this week Adam Taylor and Jacques Perreault both asked to leave the Edinburgh club.

The Edinburgh ice hockey club is potentially looking at other players who can be utilised on two way contracts and according to the website, they may be able to announce further news on this later today.

I am also interested in signings for off ice positions because Scott Neil cannot do all of the jobs that need doing and until the Club and Scott realise that, we will remain in the current chicken and egg situation.

I will continue to attend the home games, and the away games I can afford but Scott Neil cannot continue to criticise fans and supporters for not attending the home games when there are no players on the ice and no professional organisation off the ice.
I really hope 2011 is the year it turns around for the Club and Scott.

Adam Levine gets naked

Maroon 5 lead singer Adam Levine appears naked in the February 2011 issue of UK’s Cosmopolitan magazine.

You can see a photo below, but while enjoying the eye candy, please remember the important side of why he has done this.

The pictures are part of a major campaign to raise awareness of testicular cancer and encourage men to regularly check themselves.

You can read all about testicular cancer and the importance of regular checks on the Macmillan Cancer Support website.

I'm very jealous of the woman in the photo!  Rugby player and strictly star Gavin Henson has previously stripped off for this same cause.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love said to me...

...make sure you recycle your Christmas cards and Christmas tree.

Recycle your Christmas cards this January in special bins in TK Maxx, Marks & Spencer and HomeSense stores (click on the store name to find your nearest store) and those stores will donate money to the Woodland Trust which we will use for planting trees through our More Trees, More Good campaign.

Once you have recycled them at one of your local stores, then visit the Woodland Trust website, enter your name, address, email address (you can opt in for updates) postcode and vote for more trees to be planted near to where you live.
ASDA also have Christmas card recycling bins in their stores, they are collecting on behalf of Trees for Cities.  Unfortunately I cannot tell you more about the scheme as I can't find any information on either website.
Finally, do you remember a month ago struggling when you went to buy that real tree?
Well, please ensure you make the same amount of effort ensuring it gets recycled, most councils do a tree recycling scheme, check their website or just give them a call, don't just dump it and hope someone else will sort it out.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Fraser Nelson's Daily Telegraph column: Reeves responds

I was on my way home from Murrayfield ice rink where my team, the Edinburgh Capitals had just been on the receiving end of an eight - nil thrashing when I read Fraser Nelson's tweet;
"Is the coalition becoming a merger? My take in tomorrow's Daily Telegraph"
So, given Chelsea FC could only manage a three - three draw against Aston Villa, then the Edinburgh Capitals got thrashed eight - nil, I was in a foul mood and responded as below to Fraser Nelson;
"No it bloody well isn't, they are two different registered political parties, why oh why are journalists obsessed with this?"
Now, I have eaten and sat down and read Fraser's piece in full again, I will now respond to the main points of his article to be seen in tomorrow's today's Daily Telegraph.

The first part I object to is this line about Nick Clegg's New Year Message;
It was directed not at the country but at his remaining party activists.
How patronising, "remaining party activists", to be perfectly honest the Liberal Democrats have seen a massive surge in our membership figures (16.4% in Scotland alone) and the numbers of people coming forward to help our MPs, MEPs, MSPs and candidates still continues to grow, each and every day.

Well Fraser, the reason it was not directed at the country but at the tens of thousands of Liberal Democrat Members, is because it was intended that way - you can read Nick Clegg's New Year Message yourself.

Nelson then goes on to list just a few of the achievements that the Liberal Democrats secured within the Coalition Government - obviously he is not pleased that 800,000 have been lifted out of paying any income tax at all or that the pupil premium guarantees children from disadvantaged backgrounds will receive more funding through their school years?

The article then goes on to say;
"At least a third of their supporters have defected and they expect to be routed in the May elections. Losing the referendum on changing the voting system to AV would compound the misery."

"No matter how hard he tries to portray his party as the good guys in a two-party coalition, voters are not buying it. This looks, talks and walks like a merger."
Sorry Fraser, a third of our supporters have not defected, on what evidence do you base this particular comment on?

He then goes on to say;
"When the Lib Dems were in coalition with Labour in the Scottish Parliament, they kept their own identity and party structures. In Westminster, though, Cameron seems to have led the two parties into a political blender and flicked the "on" switch. The spin teams are integrated, nearly every department is run jointly, and virtually all the Lib Dem MPs have a government job."

The Party structure has not changed for the Liberal Democrats and nor are there any plans for it to do so - sorry Fraser, another part of your article that is wrong.

When you say virtually all the Lib Dems have a government job, you mean virtually all apart from Mike Crockart MP, Jenny Willott MP, etc etc in fact only 18 of the 57 are on the government payroll - that really is not virtually all have a government job - let us have some honesty here.

I accept there are some PPS roles etc that I have missed, but those jobs are not government paid jobs.

Fraser also says the spin teams are integrated, yes the government aspects do work together such as the Special Advisers but the Liberal Democrats have an independent press team based in Cowley Street, who are not managed by the government - so once again not entirely correct.

The article then drifts towards the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election which has been called after disgraced former Labour MP Phil Woolas was found guilty by two High Court judges of knowingly lying to voters in a last-ditch bid to hold his seat at the General Election.

The article states;
The by-election is dangerous for the Lib Dems because it asks two horribly awkward questions: if you support Cameron's Government, why vote Lib Dem? And if you oppose it, why vote Lib Dem?

I assume from this weirdly worded line that Fraser Nelson has yet to visit the constituency? 

The reason I say this is when I was doing some telephone canvassing there, not one person mentioned either of those points, they mentioned the fact that Labour had lied to them last time round, they are worried about the debts Labour have left behind and also the fact that Labour have gone back on their promise of new health centres for Saddleworth and Shaw & Crompton.

Fraser, I'm sorry but the priorities you have for the voters of Oldham East & Saddleworth seem to be worlds away to those that actually live and work there and I think what they say on January 13th will be more important than what you write.

The article then goes on;

If today's opinion polls were tomorrow's election result, the 57-strong group of Lib Dem MPs would be reduced to a rump of just 13 members
As everyone knows, opinion polls are never perfect indicators of what actually happens in an election.  Since my arrival in Scotland as the Deputy Director of Campaigns the opinion polls and journalists predicted that we would lose the Lib Dem MEP in 2008 and that we would go from 12 to 5 MPS in the general election.
George Lyon is an excellent hard working MEP, fighting Scotland's corner in Europe because we didn't lose our MEP and our eleven MPs continue to work hard on behalf of their constituents and three of them are now part of the coalition government - because we lost just one seat at the election, a seat we had held for a few years since the by-election.
My point is that opinion polls and journalists predictions must be taken with a pinch of salt.
Fraser Nelson summates with this point;
A merger with the Tories is emerging as the best chance most Lib Dem MPs have to keep their seats.
I have never read such nonsense in all my life, I used to respect what Fraser wrote but this silly tripe is as far from reality as flying cars.
The two parties are registered with the Electoral Commission as two separate parties for a reason, because that is exactly what they are.  We have separate HQ's because we are separate organisations and Fraser for what it's worth we will continue to remain separate and different forever more.
It doesn't matter how many times journalists make up nonsense of splits and mergers and opposition politicians try and woo our members all they do is show Nick Clegg, me and the Lib Dem activists the length and breadth of the UK that they do not understand how the Liberal Democrats work and operate and that they are no nearer to understanding that now than they were when the party was formed.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

The December and final for 2010 stat porn for my little blog

Continuing my regular monthly stat porn figures for anyone who is remotely interested in who reads my little blog, what stories they read and from where they read it, the monthly summary of my visitor stats according to google analytics is as below for December 2010.

The busiest day on my blog last month was Saturday 18th December, the day I was suspended from Twitter and this was down to the story about the tweet from ITV slagging Nigella Lawson off.

Last month I had 2,351 absolute unique visitors, a great increase on last month. They made 2,980 visits and 3,814 page views.

22.08% of the visitors were through direct traffic, 46.31% from referring sites and 31.61% via search engines.

So, my top 10 referring sites for the last month were;
1. Twitter (2)
2. Facebook (1)
3. Lib Dem Blogs (3)
4. Lib Dem Voice (4)
5. Blogger (5)
6. (6)
7. (8)
8. Munguins Republic (11)
9. Caron's Musings (7)
10. SNP Tactical (10)

During December I wrote 26 blog posts, one more than the previous month but still a long way behind where I have been in the past.

The top 10 stories by direct page views that you've read most were;
1. ITV News tweets Nigella Lawson not as attactive as she thinks she is
2. Mike Crockart MP, no really he is
3. Andrew Reeves is still suspended on Twitter - but the support is awesome
4. Labour MSP John Park stands down as Dunfermline candidate?
5. X-Factor's Gamu Nhengu and Aberlour Choir for the Christmas No.1
6. Angela Constance MSP is new Scottish Minister for Skills & Lifelong Learning
7. Jack Frew - murdered in cold blood for being gay?
8. Daily Telegraph expose MP Michael Moore, for being, erm, well, honest
9. Keith Brown MSP is new Scottish Transport Minister
10. My response to Ed Miliband's request to join him and Labour - their lies, hypocrisy and arrogance

A mixed bag once again this month ranging from my suspension from twitter because of a rogue tweet from ITV News, the impersonation of Mike Crockart MP, the Daily Telegraph undercover journalist sting of many MPs including Michael Moore and once again the extremely sad case of Jack Frew's murder back in May, he is obviously missed by friends and family alike.
The visitors to my little blog came from 56 countries this month, up 1 on last month, the top ten were as follows;
1. United Kingdom (1)
2. United States (2)
3. Canada (3)
4. Ireland (4)
5. Australia (12)
6. Spain (6)
7. India (9)
8. France (7)
9. Netherlands (=11)
10. Brazil (=11)

That's all folks.
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