Sunday, 1 August 2010


I find it quite incredible that Shimon Peres considers the UK attitude to Israel as antisemitism. There is a long history of support for the Jewish cause in this country. We were as supportive as any other country when the news of the Holocaust broke.
Perhaps the truth is that a Jewish nation, who tramples on anyone who poses a threat, is going to use the race card whenever their actions are criticised. They seem to be taking the old Wild West opinion expressed in black and white films where we heard the words, "The only good Indian is a dead one."
Great support was given to the finding of a home for the traditionally dispersed people of Israel following the 2nd World War. Finally the decision went in favour of what was then called Palestine and the movement began. Already in residence were Palestinians but these were not considered entitled to be there. As the nation of Israel increased and rooted itself there was a Palestinian resentment - not unexpected, I would have thought. The day dawned when they began to be a thorn in the side of the occupiers of what had been their land.
A leader called Yasser Arafat came forward and their opposition to Israel increased. Later we saw their expulsion to Lebanon and the trouble that followed. They were eventually allowed back to their own country but were mainly restricted to specific areas.
As time went on they received greater and greater harassment at the hands of the state of Israel. Just imagine those farmers who want to get on with growing crops and selling them to make a living. They are individuals whose simple desire is to live in peace and go about a normal daily life. Yet they are bombed and shelled and their homes removed by the occupiers.
If we speak up for them we are dubbed antisemites. What rubbish!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Israel acts like the Nazis

Sir Gerald Kauffman has spoken boldly in the House of Commons on the matter of the Israeli attack on the aid flotilla and the war against Hamas. After many years of support from many different countries Israel is now beginning to lose its friends. It is simply down to the way it deals with the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. After the Holocaust of the Second World War one would have thought there was a lesson to be learned. Yet Israel simply copies the style of treatment it received from the Nazis. I find it incredible.
Sir Gerald referred to the words of a former Israeli commander who declared that the way to peace was by through talking to aour enemies, not trying to kill them. In 1948 the State of Israel was born out of Jewish terrorism. It is ludicrous to suggest that they had the sole right to be in that place. Millions of Palestinians too lived in Palestine at that time and their descendants are still there. Talk to the traders and farmers among them and you will see that all they want is to be left in peace to carry on with their work. Yet Israel just bleats on about Hamas, an organisation that is quite evil in itself. The plain fact is that in the circumstances Hamas were elected to power and are therefore the people who represent the Palestinian people.
You cannot continue in this way and retain world support for murdering an indigenous people. Israel no longer has anything to say that is the least bit interesting to the rest of the world. They are simply no longer viable as a world partner for any self respecting country. The tables have turned and it is Israel who are the perpetraters of war crime. Oh how the mighty are fallen!

Monday, 17 May 2010

Willie Walsh heads for disaster

Willie Walsh is a complete fool if he thinks his court victory is a step to overall victory. All he is doing is winding up his staff and their union! If he cannot see this then he must accept that ultimately he will be the one to cause the destruction of British Airways, not them. Not only this but in doing this and forcing a further ballot takes the dispute further into prime summer flying time. Talk about the captain saluting on the bridge as his ship sinks!!!

He is amazingly stupid. I have never seen anyone quite so suicidal. He makes Margaret Thatcher look like Mother Theresa!

The law court is not the place where this dispute will be resolved. It can only be resolved around a table by negotiation. But even then he will be looking to make a further offer which is less than the one before. What a wally - Willy!!!!!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

The BA Strikes

This will be a very short blog.
How on earth have Willie Walsh and the rest of BA top management failed to grasp the fact that this dispute is primarily about HOW they talk to the appointed representatives of their staff. It is understood by the travelling public that BA have great pressure on them with the advent of so many low cost airlines. The market place is more difficult for them. That is change and change never works out in the way you would like.
But what has to be grasped here is that the way you approach your staff is of paramount importance. Management do have the right to manage but why not take a leaf our of the Conservative party's book and work in partnership with staff? Years ago, when Volvo had industrial disputes, they looked beyond the box and saw that the troubles emanated from a section on the assembly line who worked underneath the partly assembled cars. It was the old complaint, having to work above your head. So they re-designed the assembly line so that the cars were on their sides and the welding was no longer done overhead. It worked. Why not look deeper and find out if there is another way to address the problems and then talk to the staff?
Bullying staff has never worked and it never will.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

All over bar the shouting!

My late grandfather had an expression at the end of special events. In his typical Lancashire fashion he would say, "It's all owered we, bar t' shouting." So now we have a Conservative Prime Minister presiding over a coalition government with the Liberal Democrats. At the beginning of the election campaign who would have thought this would be the result? Speaking personally, I am pleased to have a coalition. I have long believed they can work and look forward to seeing a good shot at doing so.
Last night it was fascinating to watch on TV the actual transfer of power from Gordon Brown to David Cameron. With the aid of a helicopter and someone in the royal presence with a digital camera we saw it as never before. From the smile on the Queen's face I could not decide if it was politeness or just being glad to be shut of GB! I detected a much more welcoming smile for DC!
So, the UK has finally broken the mould and is trying consensus for a change. It is strange to see Kenneth Clarke in the Cabinet without a financial portfolio. I have no doubt he will make a success of it. Lord Falconer obviously agrees! Other appointments will ensue and I wish each good luck - they will need it! We are in the middle of a financial mess which simply has to be sorted out, and quickly. They say, "Cometh the hour, cometh the man." I hope this is true.
To all those dyed blue to the marrow in the Tory rural areas who are sniping at the Liberal Democrats already I say, "It's time to espouse reality." Not only is there a moderating influence but a new face with new ideas at the front. Despite your fears you will find him not wanting when decisions have to be made.
I wonder what the woman from Rochdale thinks?

Monday, 10 May 2010

An Unholy Alliance?

The breaking news that Gordon Brown is to resign as Labour Party leader has really put the cat among the pigeons! For a whole weekend we have heard about the comings and goings of Nick Clegg and David Cameron. The Conservatives have been keen to talk to the Liberal Democrats about forming an alliance to take the government of this country forward. But I would bet they have not offered as much as the Labour Party will now offer as they begin discussions with the Lib-Dems.
In Parliament the Lib-Dems stand much closer to Labour. Their dream of electoral reform could be realised by way of an agreement with Labour. It is my humble opinion that the Tories would never allow this to happen. As negotiators the Tories have less experience than Labour. If you are to be a true negotiator you must first learn not to drive the other side into a corner. As a party who loves power they are not naturals at negotiation. To negotiate is to be prepared to do a deal in which both sides have gains. I was once involved in a game which was about negotiation. Our side wiped the floor with the opposition and so we thought we had won the game. We were told we had actually failed because negotiation should always end with a prize for both sides!
This is a tale that British Airways would learn from, but they won't. We have not heard the last of this dispute yet!
The current news is about governing the country and getting out of a financial problem that faces everyone across Europe. Whilst we have yet to see the end of the talks, I hope and pray that we shall see proportional representation in being. Other countries can live with it and we shall have to do the same if we are to have government by consent of the nation. These are heady times and could well prove historic in the long run. There is a chance that common sense will play a part in future government decisions because it is how the public see politics and how they see the way forward. Proportional representation would mean that our politicians would have to think hard about their supporters before deciding on the way forward. The amount of power they would possess would reduce and this would be a good thing for us all.
I hope to see an end to the Thatcherite way of saying "do as I say - not as I do!" Consensus would be the watchword, and rightly so. The art of persuasion has a lot in common with negotiation skills. Try to persuade the other side that there is something in it for them as well as you. It works because I have tried it when I was a trade union branch secretary. Common sense and justice should not be strangers to one another.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Nearly over!

Over the past few weeks we have heard our leading politicians telling us why should vote for their party. Each has tried to convince us that the other two parties would bring doom and gloom upon us. Lord Wilson, a former prime minister, once said, looking back, that 85% of his decisions would have been the same regardless of which party had been in power. So maybe we ought not to concern ourselves over the result when we know it on Friday morning. I, for one, will not be staying awake to hear the results coming in on TV!

Many countries are in the grip of the downturn in economy and all have to find ways of dealing with it. It will certainly have to be sorted out and I do not advocate a quick way out of it. This would be too risky by far. One thing we have learned is that the path to success is not rapid. We are far too wary of boom and bust politics today. I hope that Greece soon gets out of this anger and settles down in acceptance of an austere time during which the economy recovers. I say this because we are due to go there on holiday in July this year. We have friends there who we do not wish to see suffer.

On Friday morning we shall awake to hear the election results and then see what activity takes place in terms of constructing a new government. If we get the predicted hung parliament perhaps we shall avoid the excessive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich that a Conservative outright victory would bring. However, should the Liberal Democrats hold a balance of power we might just see some sensible government by either of the other parties. Of one thing I am sure, Gordon Brown is soon to become yesterday's man. I say this, not because I do not like him, but the one in power and then loses the election (and in one way or another he will) finds himself quickly ensconced on the back benches for the remainder of his political life.

He has not been a popular figure but he has certainly done his best to get us through the current difficulties. I am equally sure that his successor will work just as hard to do the same. The only thing is that payment time is coming and we cannot say how it will touch us as we move back towards stability. By the end of polling day I shall say what my grandfather used to say: "It's all over with, bar t'shouting."