The hinges of Brexit

There are several dimensions to this

  • Political independence
  • Commercial autonomy
  • Environmental concerns

Historically there were during

  • the 1600 – 95% of war between European nations
  • the 1700 – 75% of war …..
  • the 1800 – 45 % of war
  • 2000 – 0% conflict so far

Considering that the UK government pledged to cut Greenhouse gas emmission to zero by 2050, it seems illogical to leave the EU now.

Leaving the EU and having trade deals with further away countries, would mean considerably more transport of goods, more travel.

The UK is a water logged country and relies on either planes or boats for travel. There is only one land (under-water, tunnel) form of transport that doesn’t rely on flying or boats and that is via the Euro tunnel.

With increasing weather instability, transport by container ships will be endangered. There will also be a reduction of flights because it is very unlikely that the air travel industry will come up with a distinct change in airplane design that is more environmentally friendly.

Yet Britain relies for a large part on air travel. There are now calls to stop inland air travel but the train fares are too expensive to make that affordable.

Whilst I do not suggest that we should have to put up with any political system in Europe, just to get our trade, we need to seriously consider the implication of a break from Europe from the points of environmental change.

London_waterlevels

Flooding predictions for London for around 2080

What voters deserve is a clear planning procedure to include the worsening weather conditions, the increased demands on immigration because unstable political systems in Asian and African countries as well as increased flooding of large areas will decrease landmass available for people in those countries and they all will attempt to emigrate to saver regions.

Whilst our own coastlines suffer from erosion and raising sea levels will eventually encroach on our land.

A strong European council will be an assurance that political systems in European countries will not break down and revert to undemocratic methods.

Leaving Europe now without a deal makes us very vulnerable as we will be more dependant on trade deals with distant nations, when the transport of goods may be disturbed by worsening weather.

Being an influencer in Europe and remain as such will do us more favour than just leaving without a deal.

Whilst large swathes of English land owners want to break off from Europe because they have got the land to support themselves, the rest of us including London, Wales and Scotland feel very uneasy.

Of course theoretically the UK could manage on its own but the right-wing nationalists have a strong history of violent racism and that is what makes it an impossible thought to even embrace. The Jo Cox murder proved what right-wing terrorists are capable of.

I would say that the threat of war from an unstable future Europe together with worsening weather conditions would definitely threaten the future of our civilisation. Our armies would be severely hampered by the weather and our domestic situation would become severely unstable too. Further away allies may not be able to reach. Even D-Day had to be delayed because of bad weather and weather is going to be much worse. So we have to be very sensible and build alliances whilst it is possible to do so and prevent a shift to the right and into facism.

For these reasons I sincerly hope that a new Conservative Prime minister will be stopped from suspending parliament to push through a no deal Brexit.

 

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The rainforest fund

top view photo of forest

Photo by Tom Fisk on Pexels.com

Woke up this morning thinking that all the nations who have a foreign aid budget should also have a rainforest fund. Our efforts to reduce deforestation must increase and it has to become a lawfully required activity to save nature.

I searched the Internet and such organisations do exist, predominantly trying to help save the rainforest. Yet whilst countries, around rainforests make illegal logging a criminal offence, it is impossible to police and enforce the laws.

Programs like ‘‘I bought a rainforest’‘, Planet Earth, highlighted the problems, which make poor inhabitants of the rainforest regions fell trees to sell, just to be able to survive. Large swathes of rainforest get chopped down for wood to make furniture, planting of Palmoil, farming fruits for sale etc.

Higher earnings and a world-wide decreasing of poverty doesn’t ensure that people earn that money with environmentally friendly activities.

There is no environmental value how GDP is achieved, it is just GDP. As our governments are proud to provide full employment, they also do not care 100 % what products those workers make, whether they help destroy natural and vitally important resources or not. Capitalism is not valued by earth friendliness, it is valued by profits achieved, whatever it is they sell.

photography of factory

Photo by Chris LeBoutillier on Pexels.com

When we reduce our carbon footprint inland, we still deal with other countries who have a huge one. OK, we no longer strive to produce polluting goods in Britain, but we have them imported from China. Pollution is a world-wide problem, not a local one.

We need to start giving each product and service a carbon footprint value just as we give foods a calorific value.

I don’t support Esther McVey’s call to reduce the Foreign Aid, that Britain gives, instead this Foreign Aid could be diverted to Rainforest preservation. Each time foreign aid gets reduced, we increase the chance of troubles brewing up abroad, which then will need to be solved by wars. Wars have a huge carbon footprint.

Neither do I support Boris Johnson’s promise of further tax cuts for the rich as people simply do not want to invest in Britain because of Brexit. Tax cuts do not prevent Brexit. It just proofs how poorly configured Conservative Brains are, all they can think of is ‘less tax will solve all problems’.

I’ll make another post about Brexit.

 

The Tower Hamlets dictatorship

If I understand correctly that every pupil has the right to choose a school to their liking, to apply for attendance to get an education.

Once in a school, then pupils still have the right to apply for another school for an in-term transfer to any school of their choice.

Yet in Tower Hamlets the council wants to dictate to parents what school to send their children to because the council decides to close a school down.

Without any consultation of parents the council made arrangements with Oaklands school to take over pupils from Raine’s Foundation school once they closed this brand new school.

That is not within the merits of our legal framework as it doesn’t allow pupils to make any choices and the council also did not ask parents whether they would agree to the scheme in the first place.

What makes the situation doubly difficult is that Ofsted has declared Oaklands to be an excellent school and Oaklands pupils also had some very good results last year. But, their pupils are not very polite.  I would have expected that brilliant students also have brilliant and polite personalities but that is not the case.

My daughter was sent to Oaklands in March of this year as one of the best Math students from Raine’s Foundation to take part in the AMSP Maths Feast. She was greeted with shouts of Raine’s are not going to do well. That really ruined the atmosphere.

oaklands head apology

Letter of apology from Oaklands school to Raine’s parents

Now parents went for visits to Oaklands to see whether they want to send their kids to the school and were openly insulted by pupils shouting F….k o..f Raine’s.

This promped the head teacher to make a written apology to Raine’s parents for the bad behaviour of pupils hoping that parents will still send their kids to the school as it is save.

Obviously the whole scheme is flawed from start to finish. An education authority should never dictate to parents what school to send their kids to.

I don’t think that good exam results alone are a good indicator that pupils will actually be welcome at a school when that school has a certain ethos that is determined by one particular class of pupils.

I have now written to Ofsted because I think that the process to shut Raine’s and transfer pupils without formal consulation is legally flawed.

Ofsted should never stop inspecting schools. Even the best schools should get an inspection at least every 5 years and there should be a better ability of parents to contact Ofsted directly if they feel they cannot make themselves heard at the school.

Unfortunately with those constant ministerial changes of our current Conservative government it is literally impossible to get heard. The cut-backs of civil cervants makes government departments under-staffed and any communications do not get read properly with excuses that they need to await a new minister to take up the post.

The school and council should have consulted with all parents prior to making any arrangements. The school did arrange a meeting with the head of Oaklands schol but parents weren’t told that an amalgamation was on the cards and so the meeting was very sparsely attended. Parents were clearly told in the spring that nothing would change to the education arrangements in the future. See notification-of-change-of-leadership-arrangements

We have now decided to not even consider a place at that unhospitable Oaklands school.

Having lives before politics

I am astounded to read that

  • Michael Gove took Cocaine
  • Rory Stewart smoked Opium
  • Jeremy Hunt had a Cannabis Lassi
  • Boris Johnson snorted cocaine and smoked drugs as teenager

Although these events are kind of ancient, e.g. they have been described by

Mr Gove who told the Mail: “I think all politicians have lives before politics. Certainly when I was working as a journalist I didn’t imagine I would go into politics or public service.”

I think that is the source of the problem of our increased drug culture in Britain, that taking them is seen as having a life.

On the front line, living in Tower Hamlets, a borough that has a high drug dealing problem, we find that it’s the social users, the ones that have jobs and earn enough money to consume drugs, have a substantive responsibility towards the drug dealing problem. If they wouldn’t buy the drugs, the dealers would have less reason to sell.

I can only hope that people are starting to realise that it would be better for all of us not to take any class A, B, or C drugs whether in politics or not.

Tower Hamlets Council is currently  conducting a substance misuse strategy survey on how to best combat drug use and how to educate people about it. They suggest that care leavers and high risk groups like pupils who have been excluded from schools should be educated about the dangers. Yet, the council seems to forget that it is those established high earners and middle class university graduates that also need educating.

Drugs are very common these days and it is definitely not easy to say no.

Yet if a pupil in a school these days would be caught out in any way with drugs whatsoever, they would be expelled and had little chance to ever enter a high-profile political post.  It doesn’t help to play down the drug taking of major politicians and put it down to life before politics.

What should happen is that children who nowadays get themselves in trouble whilst in school should not be expelled but helped instead so that they have a future equally as those politicians who now admit their failures once they had a career.

It is more than cynical that Michael Gove feels fit to admit his drug taking when he used to be Minister for Education who fell through the net.

Perhaps also our alcohol drinking culture should be called into question as this also has severe health implications both on our minds and on our bodies.

But the moral of the story is though that nobody is perfect after all.

 

Yet in Tower Hamlets

Whilst I am positive about the Labour win in Peterborough for tactial Brexit reasons, I must say that the Labour council here in my home borough of Tower Hamlets has caused a lot of concern to local parents, pupils, teachers and school staff for wanting to close down a Christian Secondary school to amalgamate it with a non Christian council run school, which mainly caters for Muslim pupils.

Please sign an online petition against the closure.

The way the council goes about this is illegal. Also the Council has published a petition against the closure on its website without telling anybody in writing that it was there. So nobody signed the petition on the Council’s website but thousands of people signed the petition on change.org as aboe.

The closure was announced to parents and pupils at a highly stressful time. Just prior to year 11 pupils sitting their GCSE exams they received a letter from the council’s Corporate Director for Children and Culture Debbie Jones stating that the school is to close.

This caused immense stressed to the pupils who didn’t know anything about this.

What is also worth mentioning that the letter was addressed to pupils directly and not to the parent or carer of the pupil.

The new term to start in September 2019 has pupils who have applied for year 7 places and the Cabinet member for Children, Schools and Young People, Labour Councillor Danny Hassell has written to me defending his decision to cancel all year 7 places because the school is undersubscribed and because the school was visited by Ofsted and found to be in need of improvement. Also our local Labour Councillor Sirajul Islam supports the closure of this Christian school in Tower Hamlets.

It is obvious that there are many other solutions rather than close the school. The council refused to finance another Church of England headmaster financially who was drafted in to help.

At the same time the council has decided to close the school and disperse and transfer current pupils to the nearby Oaklands school or other schools by 2020.

Yet, yesterday on Facebook, the Council’s post, which promoted healthy air in the borough stated that no decision about the closure of the school has been taken yet and the decision is put off because of a pending public consultation.

The Council’s website lists the process here

The consultation is now open till 24. July 2019.

I think that the council has acted unlawfully and already decided about the closure of the school prior to even running the public consultation, which is not open yet.

Parents were invited to a meeting 7. May 2019. which was very badly conducted. In fact the council officer running the meeting, kept on grinning and smirking at parents.

There is now a public demonstration planned outside the school on

14. June 2019 between 3 – 5 pm. Approach Road, London E2

It has to be said that Raine’s Foundation has a brand new state of the art building, which cost millions to erect and is only about 4 years old. The school is in a lovely location, near Victoria Park and has a great quality of location to it.

Unfortunately only 1 Conservative councillor and 1 Liberal Councillor are prepared to support the school staying open. It is very sad that the Labour Council sees it as an easy option to close a Church of England run school with Christian values.

It seems that only a Judicial Review will help this problem. Please get in touch if you can help. And please we do not want a radical atmosphere during the demonstration.

The school has found support by other publications.

Further reference from East London Lines.

East London Advertiser 

 

Peterborough for Labour

I must say I like it that Labour won Peterborough ahead of the Brexit Party. It is a clear indication that people voted against Brexit in an area that previously was predominantly pro-Brexit.

Now, that most of the lies and rumours about how glorious Brexit is, have been dispersed, people vote for remain.

I think Brexit was all along a red herring to keep people’s attention on a right-wing nationalist agenda for the purpose that the Conservative government could re-create Victorian values in Britain.

The Conservatives lost many councils in the recent council elections for the reason that people are fed up to the teeth with the cut-backs they have to suffer to do with care for the elderdy, children, schools, rubbish collections and so forth.

Councils are running out of money and its this Conservative goverment that is responsible for it.

Whilst the government keeps on saying people didn’t vote for the Conservatives because the Conservatives failed to deliver Brexit, the reality is that people didn’t vote for the Conservatives because of the severe cut-backs on local council spending and overall policies.

Policies, which saw the wider introduction of Benefit cut-backs for the disabled, the Universal Credit, that left people queueing for Food banks to be able to survive, Zero hours contracts and a reduction in overall wages value by 6%.

Obviously Nigel Farage was very deflated about the second place in Peterborough but I think it indicates the line of pro and against Brexit voters in favour of the against.

Yesterday’s D-Day 75. Anniversary, saw veterans in tears over Brexit planning because they fought for freedom in Europe and want to keep it that way.

This article is not meant to be a blank cheque of support for Labour, who have many faults but it just shows that on the political strategy people voted tactically for the party that could counter the Brexit party in that local by-election.

Added on 7/6/19, the newly elected MP Lisa Forbes was caught into questions over alleged anti-semitic behaviour.

 

 

Housing

minimalist photography of white and gray condominium

Photo by Luis Quintero on Pexels.com

In Germany for housing, the percentage cost of income is 27% and in Britain its 40%. Additionally there is a corrolation in that the higher the percentage of home-ownership, the higher is the amount of unemployment.

The combination of home ownership with a lack of homes for rent pushes up the housing cost and increases immobility. It increases the cost of living and reduces the quality of life through a need to have long commutes to work through public transport because home owners are stuck in their homes and have to commute to work. Especially the sale of many council flats increased social immobility and increased the cost of housing and reduced the availability of homes for rent.

In Britain renters stay in their homes for about 4 years and in Germany for around 11 years.

Britain is obsessed with home ownership.

Additionally real wages have fallen by 6%.

Yet the government created this red herring Brexit that is supposed to solve all the problems. One of the new Conservative candidates, Dominic Raab, threatens to shut down parliament to circumvent the democratic process and create a no-deal Brexit. Brace yourselves.

Britain is getting poorer under this government.

Source Politics Live, 6/6/19

BBC ‘High rents make young people less mobile’

BBC Through the wealth gap, the proportion of second home-ownership amongst the wealthiest has risen, whilst the average person is kept out of homeownership.

 

New thoughts

The political correctness changes from time to time and we get trained how to express ourselves in the correct manner.

I find it quite amazing that people who behaved according to generally accepted laws and behaviour suddenly find themselves prosecuted in old age for doing things wrong.

This blog exists since decades and hopefully I did not make too many remarks, which are now unfashionable. I apologise if I did not correct anything in time.

Just to say that I am now reading new books and one of those is Steven Pinker’s “Enlightenment now“, which puts a lot of those modernistic fears that swampt the Internet for years into an excellent perspective. The book beams with positivity, just what I need right now.

Apparently a lot of great new books get recommended during the “Daily Politics Show“, which I enjoy watching too.

It is quite often that new trends throw up fears we all have in the back of our minds and appeal to us somehow and we engage at some point or other. There were the anti-vaccine people, the anti-GMO crops discussion and so forth.

Often radicals do exploit our fears and stear us into undesirable directions. We have to be careful and stay on the level playing field that is acceptable to all.

I think it depends what logarythm one is switched onto because social media always shows us stuff again and again we once looked at and keeps our minds on a certain level.

That is where the Steven Pinker book comes in because it clearly shows a very good set of comprehensive statistics that put human development into perspective world-wide. A book not to be missed.

 

 

Back to reality

81345181-1905040104+-+London+Regional+Summer+Championships+2019

Johanna Kaschke a judge at London Swimming Regional Champs

Just decided to air this blog again, after I had been hiding it for years because of the shame of losing this libel trial. But history is what it is and we just have to live with it. Apparently we are now being defined by our online history and seeing that employers now choose employees by their public profile, I can well now understand that it is absolutely hopeless for me to ever get a well paid job.

What has happened so far?

I am a pensior now and I volunteer a lot to keep busy. I volunteer with

  • my local community centre
  • my local Safer Neighbourhood team and Neighbourhood Watch
  • for British Swimming at competitions as a swimming judge/starter

I am not active in politics at all. It is just amazing how small local activities of a female to do with political parties or interest groups get blown out of all proportions. Does it have to do with power-sharing?

Just having watched Dragon’s Den this week, there is now an online business that offers to clean up people’s public internet profile for a yearly membership of £70, so that it is easier to get the well paid job.

I think I will pass on that and allow the people who so completely and utterly bullied me online to live with their own conscience.

In the meantime, after having left the Conservative Party and been politically abstinent for years, I tried to re-join the Labour Party but was refused membership by my local association apparently just a year after I applied, apparently when I posted a picture of  being at a Jewish synagoge durinng a multi-faith celebration of the yearly Holocaust commemoration, which also included Councillor Islam for Bethnal Green. I declined an inviation to appeal the refusal.

Somehow I have the feeling I just don’t fit into political parties and will give that a miss in future.

 

Sir Tim Berners-Lee now stakes the fear

Finally after years of bringing my court case, which was largely about manipulation of reader’s moods towards radicalism, Sir Tim acknowledges that the web can be manipulated in a bad way and that new laws are needed.

I argued long and hard that the current libel laws, which require a reader of a story to read the whole article to make up the mind is out-dated as people do not have the time to read and thoroughly analyse stories they read online. There are too many stories and people do not have enough time.

People read headlines and make up their mind. This also played a big role in the Brexit. People were given slogans and by the sound of it, decided. It was only after the referendum that explanatory articles were put up on the web to show people what it all means.

Nobody spends hours, days, weeks looking up statistics, reading up history to consider one story they read to find out how true it is.

A large part of my court case centred around factual truth on reports and it was thrown out because of freedom of expression.

In hind-sight. I was a LEA appointed school governor in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. I was put into a small school with a large number of Asian pupils.

Then some Labour members put up stories that I was once suspected to be a member of the RAF, Red Army Faction, showing machine guns in their logo. Those were the German terrorists of the 70s. The fact that I was acquitted and given compensation was a small remark at the end of the story, whilst the blazing terrorist part was the headline.

I then stepped down from my post of school governor to avoid those, who tended to think radical to see me as an ambassador of radicalism in Tower Hamlets.

At the time, the situation was much worst than it was today. It was when hate preaching was still around on the streets, it was when the Iraq war was in full swing and it was when al-Qaeda was in action and it was still before Daesh was established and young kids were encouraged to leave Britain to go to join them.

I did see this coming and felt that radicalization was a mood that was very dangerous at the time and it led to many bad things happening. I tried to avoid it catching on in Tower Hamlets by leaving my public post and by making declarations in court to make it clear that people abused the past to further radicalism.

It all fell on deaf ears. But now it seems that people finally see how the readers can be manipulated, that new laws are needed to bring more facts to the fiction and to avoid false news.

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