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megilleland

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megilleland last won the day on March 19

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About megilleland

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  1. I wonder what Blair has got out of the EU over the years. It's amazing what you can do with a socialist upbringing.
  2. On Wales Online - Is this why our MPs want to stay in the EU on board the gravy train? Nice work if you can get it. NEIL and Glenys Kinnock came under fire from critics last night as details of their estimated £10m European earnings were calculated by a pressure group. Campaigners from Open Europe, which argues for greater transparency, calculated the pair’s multi-million-pound earnings from allowances, wages and pension entitlements over a 15-year period. It worked out their salaries and perks included: A total of £775,000 in wages for Mrs Kinnock and £1.85m for her husband, adding up to £2,625,000; Allowances for Mrs Kinnock’s staff and office costs of £2.9m; A £64,564 “entertainment allowance” for Lord Kinnock; A total of five publicly-funded pensions, worth £4.4m, allowing them to retire on £183,000 a year; A housing allowance that allowed them both to claim accommodation costs even though, as a married couple, they lived in the same house in the Belgian capital between 1995 and 2004. The TaxPayers’ Alliance campaign manager Susie Squire yesterday attacked the scale of the earnings. She said: “It does seem an awful lot, but anyone who has experience of the Brussels gravy train will be able to believe these figures. “There are lots of eurocrats on massive pensions and massive salaries living the five-star lifestyle at taxpayers’ expense. “Brussels isn’t at all transparent. It’s very difficult to get information about money which is being spent in the first place.” Ukip’s newly-elected Wales MEP John Bufton said he was “appalled” at the amounts paid. “It’s quite incredible and unbelievable,” he added. “The Welsh public will see this as an absolute farce. “And the thought that Gordon Brown is so desperate he has to bring in Glenys Kinnock shows the whole thing just stinks.” Asked by the Western Mail what he wanted to say about yesterday’s revelations, former European Union Transport Commissioner Lord Kinnock, 67, replied: “Nothing, absolutely nothing.” Quizzed as to whether the figures reported were accurate, the former MP for Islwyn, who led the Labour Party to two general election defeats before quitting in 1992 then spending 10 years in Brussels, said: “I’m not making any form of response.” Earlier this month, Mrs Kinnock, 64, quit as an MEP after 15 years. Last Sunday Labour lost one of its two European Parliament seats in Wales to Ukip as Labour came second to the Conservatives in Wales, capping a disastrous election performance. Mrs Kinnock is to be given a life peerage and appointed to succeed Caroline Flint who resigned as Europe Minister, saying she was not content to be Gordon Brown’s “female window dressing”. Yesterday, a spokeswoman for the Kinnocks, whose property portfolio includes a £815,000 home in Islington, North London and a £700,000 house in Peterston- super-Ely, outside Cardiff, disputed just one of Open Europe’s figures – a “transition allowance” Lord Kinnock received when he left Brussels in 2004, worth £355,143 at today’s exchange rate. She said the true figure was lower, but refused to reveal it. Open Europe estimated Mrs Kinnock’s travel costs based on MEPs’ average. It estimated she spent £1,179,482 for travel between Britain and the Continent over 15 years, and £45,777 for travel outside the EU. During 10 years in Brussels, Lord Kinnock automatically received residential allowances totalling £276,962. On Lord Kinnock’s income and perks, the spokeswoman said: “All of these details are a matter of public record.” Based on Open Europe’s calculations, they will receive a combined annual pension of about £183,000. According to the Mail on Sunday, the think-tank said Mrs Kinnock can expect £67,835 a year from two pensions as an MEP: one a £19,370 basic pension and the other £48,465 from the European Parliament’s Additional Voluntary Pension Scheme which sees the taxpayer paying £2 for every £1 put into the pot by MEPs. Her new ministerial pay package will be used to top up contributions to the basic MEP pension. She already claims a teacher’s pension. Lord Kinnock receives an ex-MP’s pension, thought to be £32,000 a year. He has a second pension as a former EU Commissioner, worth more than £80,000. The Kinnocks have also built up a valuable property portfolio, with homes in London and Wales. In 1992, they bought a house in Ealing, West London, for £445,000. They sold it in January 2007 for £1,515,000 and bought a smart three-storey property. Other members of the family have also benefited from Europe. Son Stephen’s first job after Cambridge University was as a research assistant to an MEP. His Danish wife Helle – tipped as a future prime minister of Denmark – sat as an MEP from 1999 to 2004, while the Kinnocks’ daughter Rachel was her mother’s research assistant at the European Parliament.
  3. We have just had a local person here in Hereford win £71 million pounds and this of course has generated a lot of comment in the local press and local radio. Obviously other than the way money will change their life there are other problems facing them on how they will live their life in the future. Many years ago in the 1970s, I purchased a book in a junk shop - EF Schumacher's "Small is Beautiful". ironically his book came out on the eve of the vote on the European Common Market in 1975 – but he believed such scale led to a dehumanisation of people and the economic systems that ordered their lives. You don't come much bigger than the flatulated EU. Many of the issues Schumacher raises we are still wrestling with. He questioned the shibboleth of economic growth as the central preoccupation of politics; he talked of resource constraints on economic development. Above all, he insisted again and again that human happiness would not be achieved through material wealth. Its such a shame that many of our national and european politicians only seek to increase their own material wealth to the detriment of those around them. What Schumacher wanted was a people-centred economics because that would, in his view, enable environmental and human sustainability. (extracts from the article below published 2011 The Guardian) It was a radical challenge which, like many of the ideas of the late 60s and early 70s (feminism is another example), were gradually adopted and distorted by the ongoing voracious expansion of consumer capitalism. Niche brands such as The Body Shop in the UK or Ben & Jerry's ice-cream in the US attempted to build a "small is beautiful" model of economic enterprise that put relationship, craft and environment at the heart of their way of working. They were later snaffled up by corporate giants. Small became cool but only as part of a branding strategy which masked the ongoing concentration of political and economic power. Gigantism has triumphed. But his point is still valid as the wellbeing debate today demonstrates; despite our increased wealth since the 70s, we are no happier. Schumacher warned against exactly the issues we are now dealing with as levels of mental illness – depression, anxiety, panic attacks, stress – rise and the World Health Organisation predicts that depression will be the second most common health problem in western developed nations by 2020. This was what Schumacher feared, and his answer was "small is beautiful". Go back to the human scale: human needs and human relationships, and from that springs the ethical response of stewardship to the environment. The EU needs breaking up - its just too big to care.
  4. I can't seem to post a comment on this topic in the Hereford Times today. I am not sure what it is that the HT do not like so I am posting the comment on here. They have posted comments I have made concerning the above.
  5. Its not the knives it's the morons behind them. These people need identifying. With nothing worthwhile to do with their life these individuals will always take the risks and opportunities to make a quick buck.
  6. Italy IGNORES EU warnings over China’s ‘colonisation of Europe’ to sign Beijing deal ITALY is likely to risk the European Union’s wrath by signing up to China’s monumental global investment plan when President Xi Jinping visits Rome later this week, as Brussels braces itself for rebellion among frustrated member states which feel let down by years of the bloc’s austerity. Mr Salvini said: “If it is a matter of helping Italian companies to invest abroad, we’re ready to talk to anyone. “We’re absolutely not going to let foreign companies colonize Italy.” Antonio Tajani, president of the European Parliament, added his fears over Italy’s cosying up to China: “We cannot become a new colony of the Chinese empire.” But it's alright for us to become a region of the EU and not a sovereign state. The EU don't like it up them. Pity our politicians don't have any balls. As one person commented: Gosh, a trading relationship that doesn't demand that you surrender your national sovereignty, pay money simply to TRADE, nor demand that you allow unfettered immigration. No wonder the EU is wetting itself at what CHINA is offering, this sound suspiciously like FREE TRADE without domination by the stronger party!
  7. Is this why the EU don't publish any accounts on where our money is going?
  8. Agree all the present parties we have are as bad as one another. The electoral system is constructed so that we have a pendulum effect which results in an extreme swing to the opposite side of the political spectrum or as we have seen a coalition government of all the parties getting their own hobby horse on the statute books - mainly to the detriment of the average citizen. We end up with no decent politicians who can create a caring and fair society to get this country back on its feet. Twenty-two million votes were “wasted” in June's 2017 general election and had no impact on the result, a study by The Electoral Reform Society revealed. The ERS also blasts Britain's first-past-the-post system, which is designed to avoid hung parliaments – but, for the second time in three general elections, left no party with a majority. Chief executive Darren Hughes said: “The vast majority of votes are going to waste, with millions still stuck in the electoral black hole of winner-takes-all - a diverse and shifting public having to work around a broken two-party system. A Government spokeswoman said at the time: “We are pleased the Electoral Commission's report into the 2017 General Election found the elections were well run. First-past-the-post is a voting system that offers a robust method of electing MPs. "A referendum on changing the voting system for general elections was held in 2011 and the public voted overwhelmingly in favour of keeping the first-past-the-post system. This Government has no plans to change that position." Alternative Voting may be the only way of saving the nation from itself as there are now two camps which may not be fully reflecting public opinion. A broad coalition reflecting a mainstream view of various opinions of right and left will never surface, because both main parties are in the pockets of the EU. A lot of people are saying that they are not going to vote in the next General Election - exactly what the present lot politicians want us to do. With Brexit they have already discounted the referendum result and carry on with their own agendas. As a sovereign nation, the people in the UK are witnessing a form of treason by their own Parliament and Government. Perhaps that is because most in those institutions do not consider the UK to be sovereign, just a region of the EU and want it to stay that way for their personal benefit. All European countries within the EU have a stark choice to make. Lose your nation status and become a region of the EU, fundamentally reform the EU to be a group of cooperating nations, or leave, like the UK are trying to do.
  9. From The Slog 15th March 2019: BRUSSELS BOMBSHELL: No extension without Second Referendum or Softer Brexit DID ANYONE SERIOUSLY EXPECT ANYTHING ELSE? Blair “advice” to the EU fingered by Brussels source Welcome to life as a vassal captive of the European Union. According to The Times this morning, the European Council will veto the spineless British demand for an Article 50 extension unless we agree either to a Second Referendum or an even worse Withdrawal Agreement than the one we’ve got. (Which was, until 24 hours ago, a closed and sacred book which must not be opened otherwise a plague of anthrax-riddled scorpions would surely emerge). It is an entirely predictable bullies’ power grab that vindicates every last British vote to Leave this coven of witches. Immediately following the Times story’s appearance, I rang The Slog’s Commission mole. This was the response. “The story doesn’t surprise anyone here. It has the fingerprints of Guy Verhofstadt and Tony Blair all over it. It’s what they do, it’s the way they work. The UK side’s best hope is to lobby very hard among the 27 to have the strings removed”. Some simple observations: A clear Parliamentary majority has twice rejected the existing WA – by massive majorities – as being a capitulation even Remainers can’t stomach. But the Commission is quite happy to ignore that, and make it worse for the UK. An even bigger Commons majority yesterday rejected the idea of a Second Referendum; indeed, the Prime Minister Theresa May has staked what little remains of her reputation on never contemplating such a thing. But the Commission has no respect for that either. The bad-cop line being adopted is bound to persuade large numbers of Remainer Tory MPs to accept the May Deal: there is now a real possibility that illegal threats from a foreign power will drag the corpse across her final Red Line. Don’t imagine that any of the Brussels mobsters will lose a second’s sleep about it. The only sensible, loyal and decent Sovereign act left open to this disgrace of a Westminster corporate State is to call an emergency debate once the demands are confirmed, and vote to leave without a deal on 29th March. But our “representatives” won’t do that of course. They will whine and dither and then “with great regret” and “under extreme duress” vote for the WA signed by the Prime Minister and dictated by Angela Merkel….under the treasonous direction of Anthony St John Lynton Blair. For once, I am lost for further words this morning, beyond two: General Election. What's Jesse going to do about this - sod all!
  10. Artist Taxi Driver sums up the situation following the pantomine in House of Commons last night. General Election around the corner?
  11. Letter in Hereford Times - 12th March 2019: Built into ordinary people (the majority of us) is a set of principles. These prevent us from committing criminal acts. We need neither fear of being caught nor of retribution as a deterrent. We acquire these principles, as well as self discipline, in childhood in a normal family. Very regrettably, our society in the last 40 years has systematically derided and attempted to destroy the normal family, advocating its replacement by a ‘menage’ of various sorts in which children grow unsupervised and with no examples set for them. We revel in the misfortune of having no father in the house, which may sometimes be chaotic and drug ridden. We now reap the harvest of our folly. We have managed to produce a generation including a proportion of undisciplined, selfish, knife-carrying individuals, totally lacking in self control. They will thieve, or murder as the urge takes them. More policing will help, but will not deal with the root of the problem. Nor can we expect the schools to solve this problem for us. Bring back the responsible father and mother in the home and give them the means to survive on adequate wages for a good day’s work, together with the time and space to bring up our children. Hubert Porte Madley Bang on Hubert thoroughly agree.
  12. 01/03/2019 - Hereford City Centre Improvements - St Owens Street - Recommendations Approved Following extended informal consultation with residents, businesses and other stakeholders,this report seeks authorisation to propose Traffic Regulation Orders (TRO’s) and other measures subject to formal consultation/notification, for a scheme to improve cycle access to Hereford city centre from the east via St Owen Street. The following regulations and measures are proposed: * To introduce a One way street except cycles south-eastbound on St Peter’s Square (west arm) and St Owen Street from Union Street to Bath Street. * To introduce a One way street except cycles on Mill Street southbound from its junction with St Owen Street to its junction with Cantilupe Street * To introduce an updated Bus only restriction on the eastern arm of St Peter’s Square from its junction with Union Street to its junction with St Owen Street * A rearrangement of the waiting, parking and loading restrictions on the north-west section of St Owen Street and around its junction with Cantilupe Street and Mill Street. * To install vertical traffic calming in the form of two flat top tables as informal crossings on St Owen Street and a raised table at the junction of St Owen Street with Cantilupe Street/St Ethelbert Street. * To designate a section of footway as shared use on the north-western side of the junction of St Owen Street and Mill Street. Also as part of the extended footway design, to redesign the traffic signal controlled crossing approaching the junction with Bath Street south-eastwards from St Owen Street, to include a pedestrian call and display. Decision Maker: Acting Assistant Director for Highways and Transport Decision published: 01/03/2019 Effective from: 08/03/2019 Decision: That: (a) the advertising of a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) proposing movement restriction changes in St Owen Street, St Peter’s Square, Mill Street and Green Street (as shown on the TRO Plan at Appendix 2) be approved; (b) the proposing of a TRO to advertise new arrangements of waiting, loading and parking restrictions in Cantilupe Street, St Owen Street, St Peter’s Square and Mill Street (as shown on the TRO Plan at Appendix 3) be approved; (c) notification and consultation over the provision of vertical traffic calming measures, in St Owen Street and at its junction with Cantilupe Street / Ethelbert Street (as shown on the Traffic Calming Plan at Appendix 4) be approved; (d) notification and consultation over the shared footway designation with a proposed change to the pedestrian crossing facility at the junction of Bath Street, Mill Street and St Owen Street (see Appendix 2) be approved; and (e) in the absence of any unresolved objections, the making of the Traffic Orders be approved; and (f) subject to recommendation e above being implemented installation and/or amendment of traffic signs (including road markings) and associated engineering measures up to a value of £235,000 be approved. Wards affected: (All Wards); Lead officer: Mairead Lane
  13. Council Friday 8 March 2019 10.00 am Agenda item no. 6 - Questions from members of the council Question Number: MQ 1 Questioner Councillor PJ Edwards, Newton Farm Question In the absence of an accurate response to my question put to Council meeting 12th October 2018 regards the BBLP contract and selling of Grounds Equipment, please may all Members be informed of vehicles and machines which Herefordshire Council own in relation to the BBLP contract? Question to Cabinet member transport and regulatory services Response: The query that you raised in relation to the Leader’s report to Council in October did not receive an inaccurate response. Your query, as recorded in the minutes, was whether Balfour Beatty Living Places (BBLP) would be able to deliver their responsibilities to maintain the council’s open spaces and verges given that it was understood that they had sold the equipment they owned required for these tasks and would therefore be reliant on third party contractors. The response confirmed that BBLP remained contracted to deliver this work, which is the case. A further query requested confirmation of the amount of money raised from the sale of equipment; this information was provided on 29 October 2018 (for ease of reference the amount was £21,548.40). As you will appreciate there is a significant amount of machinery and vehicles the council owns in relation to the BBLP contract; rather than produce a lengthy list here I would ask any member wishing to inspect the relevant asset register to email Laura.Lloyd@herefordshire.gov.uk who will be able to assist. Be interesting to see who is cutting what grass - BBLP, Council. Hereford Housing and/or private contractors. We get all of these in Muir Close during the year.
  14. 07/03/2019 - Corporate Fleet Replacement Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in) This proposal is to replace the council’s operational fleet of 34 vehicles with 30 new vehicles on an invest-to-save basis. The existing fleet as a whole is reaching a significant age and vehicles are failing and beyond repair. This has adversely affected service delivery where vehicles are unreliable and have broken down. This is increasing pressure on maintenance budgets and has resulted in the need to use short-term leases to cover vehicle downtime and to ensure service delivery. This proposal will address these risks in addition to reducing future running costs. This invest to save proposal seeks to utilise the annual revenue savings generated by this proposal to fund the capital repayments. Decision Maker: Cabinet member finance and corporate services Decision published: 07/03/2019 Effective from: 14/03/2019 Decision: That: Subject to approval in the 2019/20 capital programme that the procurement and use of up to 30 new vehicles at a cost of no more than £737,582 be approved. Wards affected: (All Wards); Lead officer: Richard Vaughan £24,586 per vehicle. Will they be replacing vehicles as they break down which must be cheaper or blow the whole budget in one go?
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