Stalybridge Labour sunk to a new low at the Stalybridge Carnival last Sunday, when their gazebo collapsed. Continue reading
HE DOESN’T KNOW HIS RIGHT FROM HIS LEFT: ED BALLS’ CONTRADICTORY POLICY ANNOUNCEMENTS
In a rush to respond to the disappointing GDP figures today, Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls raised more questions than he answered about Labour’s economic policy.
Mr Balls insisted that he stood by “every paragraph” of a speech he made last summer in a pitch to become Labour leader – despite last week ditching his principles to get the Shadow Chancellor job.
Speaking at Bloomberg in August 2010, Ed Balls rejected Alistair Darling’s plan to halve the deficit over four years. Instead he set out new tax rises including a mansion tax and revising down the 50p rate of income tax to everyone earning more than £100,000.
Last week, however, Balls promised Ed Miliband he would adopt the Darling plan, which would consolidate the public finances at a faster pace and make spending cuts starting this year.
Michael Fallon, Conservative Party Deputy Chairman, said that Mr Balls was confused about Labour policy. He said, “Ed Balls had to ditch his economic plan to get the Shadow Chancellor job, but it has taken only five days for him to become confused about what Labour’s policy is.
“Ed Balls cannot escape his record. He was at Gordon Brown’s side when Labour maxed out the nation’s credit card and burdened our children and grandchildren with billions of debt.”
- Ed Miliband brings Balls into line over ‘deficit denial’ (telegraph.co.uk)
- Ed Balls: ‘Deficit enthusiast who should apologise for economic mistakes’ (dailymail.co.uk)
- Ed Balls accepts need to cut deficit in this parliament (guardian.co.uk)
THE METROLINK IS FINALLY COMING TO ASHTON!
(Photograph by Dr. Neil Clifton & reproduced by kind agreement from Wikimedia Commons.)
Tameside Conservatives are celebrating, after the new Conservative-led Coalition Government saved Ashton’s Metrolink extension.
The extension – which Labour had failed to build in 13 years of Government – was threatened with the axe after Gordon Brown’s Government had taken the country to the brink of bankruptcy.
However, the new Government announced that the extension would be built, putting an end to over a decade of Labour dithering.
Ashton Conservative, Dr. Paul Buckley couldn’t contain his delight. He said, “What wonderful news!
“After the mess the last Labour government left the country in – with a deficit of a whopping £168bn – it was predicted the Metrolink expansion would be shelved to help save money and balance the books. However, despite Labour’s scaremongering throughout the election the Conservatives are committed to Tameside, improving the economy and lives of all the people who live here.”
Dr. Buckley continued, “The Conservatives started the Metrolink system in the early 1990s – now we are taking the service to a new level. Along with the decision to finish the M60 ring road through Tameside in the early 1990s the Conservatives have improved the transport infrastructure and prosperity of Tameside immeasurably.”
He concluded, “Thanks to everyone who fought to keep the Metrolink expansion on the right track Tameside has a healthy future ahead.”
This powerful new film looks back on 13 years of a New Labour government.
Before voting please take just ten minutes to watch this film.
The Conservatives have further exposed Labour’s scare tactics by producing twenty-three examples of Labour’s scaremongering leaflets.
In the TV debate last night Gordon Brown denied that he had any knowledge of the lies and scare tactics his MPs have been using in their campaign literature.
At a press conference today Eric Pickles and Michael Gove published 23 examples of Labour leaflets peddling lies about Conservative Party policies. The examples of leaflets containing Labour’s shameful lies include no fewer than five Minsters plus Gordon Brown’s own Parliamentary Private Secretary.
Conservative Party Chairman Eric Pickles said Labour have been “caught spreading poisonous lies about the Conservative Party”.
“Gordon Brown denied giving the go ahead for these leaflets, but with his own ministers using them in their local campaigns his comments are shown up to be complete and utter rubbish.”
“Last night, when he was confronted over these lies, the Prime Minister said that he had not authorised these leaflets”, said Michael Gove. “But today we have the proof that shows he was talking nonsense”.
“Labour have been peddling these allegations against the Conservatives for years and we now have the evidence that his own ministers were at the forefront of this smear campaign”.
Gove called on Brown to “rebuke his colleagues, insist that these leaflets are withdrawn and apologise to the electors in these seats”.
“Labour’s campaign has so far been based on fear and smear, they have nothing new to offer the British people and, on that basis, they have forfeited the right to govern.”
They have also been used by Labour in Tameside, falsely claiming that a Conservative Government would close Sure Start centres.
DAVID CAMERON CONDEMNED LABOUR’S MISINFORMATION ABOUR SURE START, CANCER TREATMENT & WINTER FUEL PAYMENTS
David Cameron has criticised Labour’s negative approach to campaigning and governing.
In answering a question after the launch of the Conservative manifesto, Cameron criticised Labour for having “nothing positive to say”.
“They’re going to spend this entire election trying to frighten people”, he said, referencing Labour’s misinformation about Sure Start, winter fuel payments, and cancer treatment.
“That’s what a government does when it’s got nothing left to give, nothing left to offer, it’s profoundly depressing”, he added.
In contrast, Cameron said the British people are crying out to hear something positive that will impact their lives.
He said, “They are longing to hear something positive, something concrete, something specific, something that will actually make a difference to their lives. And that’s what this document is all about; it is unremittingly positive, optimistic and upbeat about what we can all achieve if we come together as a country.”
He concluded, “It’s a very optimistic, hopeful, forward-looking message and I don’t think Labour have got a chance of matching it. Glad I got that off my chest!”
You have to laugh. Or vote Conservative.
Exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of the Conservative operation on Budget day 2010.
Voters face a real choice at the forthcoming General Election. To find out more, read our latest leaflet by clicking on the image above, or the link below:
Labour’s growing chaos in the wake of James Purnell’s resignation became increasingly more chaotic this week, as the national media reported on union attempts to impose a candidate on Stalybridge & Hyde for the forthcoming General Election.
An article in the Guardian newspaper described how Unite, led by it’s policy chief – and Gordon Brown’s former spin doctor – Charlie Wheelan, had pumped £11million into the Labour Party and now wanted a say on the selection of candidates.
Wheelan is tipped to play a major role in Brown’s General Election campaign.
In the meantime, senior Unite official, Peter Wheeler, is on the Stalybridge & Hyde shortlist to succeed Purnell.
The shadow children’s secretary, Michael Gove, claimed that Unite had succeeded in ensuring that 59 of its members have been selected as Labour candidates for the General Election.
Gove said, “Charlie Whelan’s distinctive fingerprints can be detected all over Labour’s recent lurch to the left in key policy areas,”
As proof he cited the government’s decision to abandon the part-privatisation of Royal Mail, a climbdown on opening up the supply of NHS care, and the dropping of school reforms.
Gove said that Unite’s involvement in the BA dispute showed how unions were now calling the shots.
“How can Charlie Whelan simultaneously be the political director of a union which is paralysing British Airways at the same time as he’s directing the political activities of Britain’s prime minister? How can we trust what Gordon Brown says about this strike, when we know he is in hock to Unite and in thrall to Charlie Whelan?”
Prospective Stalybridge & Hyde Conservative MP, Rob Adlard, said, “People in Stalybridge and Hyde have just managed to get rid of one outsider as MP. On the doorstep people have confirmed that they felt James Purnell didn’t have the best interests of Stalybridge and Hyde at heart, and they’ll be wary before they vote for another career politician and outsider such as Peter Wheeler of the Unite union, a union which is wrecking the Labour Party as a party of government.”
At the forthcoming General Election choose five more years of Gordon Brown or choose change with the David Cameron and the Conservatives.
Gordon Brown is secretly planning a “death tax” of up to £20,000 per head to fund his new National Care Service.
In this video, Andrew Lansley and Philip Hammond explain why the Conservatives will help people in old age so that they can “leave as much of their lifetimes savings as possible to the next generation”.
CONSERVATIVE LEADER HIGHLIGHTS LABOUR’S FAILURE TO PROTECT TAMESIDE’S ECONOMY, RESIDENTS, YOUNGSTERS & HEALTH
In response to the Labour Council Leader’s annual State of the Area Address, the Tameside Conservative Leader, Cllr. John Bell this year highlighted the failings of the Labour council beyond their meaningless accolades for hanging baskets and tick-box inspections.
Failings that mean, “…residents feel unsafe to walk the streets at night. Where children get left behind their national peers. Where the health of our residents is the one of the worst in the country.”
SPEECH BY CLLR. JOHN BELL [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY]
This State of Area Address takes place against a backdrop that sees our nation teetering on the verge of bankruptcy.
It is now the second Area Address in succession to be presented during a recession – a recession that is now the longest and deepest recession since records began.
This Government will leave us a nightmare legacy at the end of this Parliament that spells real trouble for families and businesses in this borough.
Figures out last week saw public borrowing this month at EIGHTY-EIGHT times worse than this time last year.
Meanwhile, according to the Bank of England, lending to business is falling at the fastest rate since records began.
The terrible irony is that the Treasury is borrowing much of this money to prop up the banks – who are then hoarding the money.
What is really terrifying is that the Government seems to be in total denial about how extremely serious our economic plight is.
Its only response in the Queen’s speech was an utterly ridiculous law that demands the reduction of the budget deficit without actually saying how.
Brown would have more chance legislating for sun on a Tuesday.
At yesterday’s CBI conference, Brown, once again, repeated his mantra that only state funding and more central state meddling can see Britain through the recession – as if that hasn’t brought us to this situation in the first place.
Everybody knows what must inevitably happen. Public spending must be dramatically cut, after Labour’s decade of irresponsible spending and squander.
Instead, our delusional Prime Minister wants to carry on regardless, unveiling more unfunded plans for public spending.
Maybe he could have carried on regardless if his public spending hadn’t have been so shambolic, but our public sector projects are £19 billion over budget, and, last week, the Local Government Association identified that £4.5 billion is wasted in the Labour Government’s red tape.
The chances are that somebody else will have to clear up the Brown mess after the next General Election.
For now though, we know Jedward are gone, but we’re still left with Deadwood…
ECONOMIC IMPACT ON TAMESIDE
The impact of Labour’s failed economic plan has had a catastrophic effect in Tameside.
In the last two years:
- There has been an on-going increase in the borough’s unemployed.
- The number of benefit claimants has increased by 122 per cent – from 3,127 in October 2007 to 6,939 in October 2009 – the third highest increase in Greater Manchester.
- The number of benefit claimants between the ages of 18 and 24 has increased by 25 per cent.
- Tameside has the lowest number of full-time available vacancies, and second lowest number of part-time available vacancies, in Greater Manchester. In total there are less than 800 job vacancies in Tameside – amounting to just one vacancy for every nine benefit claimants.
- Tameside workers have the second lowest wages in Greater Manchester. On average, they earn £983-a-year less than the Greater Manchester average wage, £988-a-year less than the North West average wage, and £2,101-a-year less than the national average wage.
Whilst the Conservatives have supported Tameside Council’s Works First initiative, it is clear that the impact of Labour’s recession has hit tens of thousands of homes in the borough.
TAMESIDE LABOUR’S RECORD
Tameside Labour’s record is one based on tick-box inspections and huge propaganda, whilst core service delivery remains questionable.
In total, £362,480 was spent on Government inspections in 2008/09.
However, the inspections are flawed, and the cost of propaganda does not, in any way, provide value for money for council taxpayers.
Labour has an enviable record for scoring well in inspections, but who inspects the inspectors?
It has recently been revealed that Tameside Council’s previous auditors, failed to find mistakes amounting to £5.3 million on the 2008/09 balance sheet.
They were paid £235,000 for this inspection.
Can we expect Tameside Council to be demanding a refund from our former auditors for their inspection incompetence?
How can the inspection process be trusted when failures of this magnitude occur?
In 2009/10 Labour will spend the following amounts on propaganda:
- Increase in the Marketing & Communications’ budget – £160,000
- Tameside Citizen, The Wire, Tameside TV – £121,000
- Community Notice Boards, street art, cultural developments, bronze statues and maps – £419,000
In total, these items alone will amount to almost £700,000 in 2009/10.
Furthermore, this money will have come directly from the money raised via Council Tax and not capital grant money, as suggested recently by a number of Labour councillors.
What does this mean for our residents?
It means that our residents live in a borough where the council has failed to get a grip of endemic problems in the borough’s neighbourhoods.
Where residents feel unsafe to walk the streets at night.
Where children get left behind their national peers.
Where the health of our residents is the one of the worst in the country.
Labour’s community safety record is truly criminal.
Tameside Council has a multi-million pound community safety budget, but year-on-year little significant impact is made on crime, with youth annoyance and anti-social behaviour still endemic.
The police are let down by Labour policy that fails to give them the necessary support to do their job.
WE KNOW LABOUR PREFERS HIRED SECURITY GUARDS TO EXTRA POLICE OFFICERS
They are paying for private security guards to patrol the streets of Tameside.
They ordered the patrols, in response to uncontrollable youth annoyance and anti-social behaviour in Dukinfield – a panic measure in response to their failure to combat anti-social behaviour.
The security guards have no legislative right to enforce the law, yet according to a company representative they are, “…breaking up groups, moving them on, taking them back to their parents.”
Patrolling with a Rottweiler dog, the security guards are all “ex-military” and their aim is to, “…get things done.”
How do they ‘get things done’, with their Rottweiler dog, when they have no legislative right to do the duties they are undertaking?
Who sanctioned these patrols?
Who has liability for the patrols in the event of a member of the public getting injured?
Why does Tameside Council prefer to employ the services of private security guards when they could be providing extra funding for the police?
For less than £2million-a-year, Tameside Council could support the recruitment of 100 Specials to work a 20-hour week, as well as 20 full-time officers. All in support of our neighbourhood policing teams, to target hotspot areas of high anti-social behaviour and youth annoyance.
Unfortunately Labour chose to condemn such an idea because they prefer Rottweilers to fully –trained police officers.
Labour is failing our young people in Tameside, with cuts to the youth service. As a result, youth annoyance and anti-social behaviour is endemic in the borough.
BINGE DRINKING & DRUGS
Young people across Tameside are putting their lives at risk by binge drinking on a regular basis.
A report by North West Trading Standards put Tameside in the top five worst places in the North West for heavy drinking among 14 to 17-year-olds.
The report found that the borough’s young people were:
- 40 per cent more likely to use illegal drugs and to have mental health problems.
- 60 per cent more likely to have been homeless, and ran almost double the risk of criminal convictions.
- 40 per cent more likely to have had accidents.
- Almost four times as likely to have been excluded from school and 30 per cent more likely to have gained no qualifications.
In March 2007, following a report that children as young as nine were drinking in the streets of Dukinfield, it was reported in the press that Labour councillor David Sweeton said, “We cannot have this on our streets. It’s tantamount to child abuse.”
Yet still Labour seem to be doing little to combat this ‘child abuse’, with incidence of alcohol-related youth annoyance high, causing misery to residents on a daily basis.
YOUTH OFFENDING TEAM ONLY MEETS “MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS”
Is it any wonder that youth offending is out of control when a Government joint inspection of Tameside’s Youth Offending Team found that, “…potential was not being fully realised,” and that, ”…Inconsistent performance, compounded by recording deficits and a lack of organisational resilience, diminished the overall standards achieved…”
The inspection also found, “…insufficient consistency of operational performance or focus on the aim of reducing offending.”
Furthermore, whilst, “…Many staff in prevention services showed considerable energy and enthusiasm… A lack of continuity of funding, relatively unfocused targeting of children and young people and insufficient assessments diminished the otherwise positive delivery of services.”
For all criteria – including “management & leadership” – Tameside’s Youth Offending Team was found only to meet “minimum requirements”.
Don’t Tameside’s young people deserve better?
Shouldn’t residents, whose lives are blighted by anti-social behaviour, expect more for the Council Tax they pay?
HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE
THE HEALTH OF TAMESIDE IS “SIGNIFICANTLY WORSE” THAN THE NATIONAL AVERAGE – ACCORDING TO THE LATEST HEALTH PROFILE
Rates for obesity, drug misuse, and alcoholism are some of the worst in the country.
As a consequence, rates for heart disease, strokes, cancer, and deaths from smoking are ‘significantly worse’ than the national average, with people nationally living, on average, more than two years longer than their Tameside counterparts.
The findings come in this year’s Tameside Health Profile, published by the Department of Health and the Association of Public Health Observatories.
Of 31 relevant indicators contained in the report, Tameside is rated ‘significantly worse’ than the national average in 24 areas, despite the borough being a ‘spearhead’ target area to tackle poor health.
Worryingly, the poor health rates are not confined to adults. Poor rates of child poverty, educational achievement, physical activity, tooth decay, smoking during pregnancy and teenage pregnancies are all cause for concern. Mercifully, childhood obesity and infant deaths are not significantly different from the national average.
FOR THE SECOND YEAR RUNNING TAMESIDE IS NAMED AMONGST THE TEN WORST AREAS FOR ALCOHOL-RELATED PROBLEMS AND DISEASE – OUT OF 300 LOCAL AUTHORITY AREAS.
Tameside is above the national average – in some cases significantly – for almost all of the 23 ‘indicators’ including the number of alcohol-related admissions to hospital, which has increased every year since 2002.
The evidence against Labour’s health failing is damning, yet in a report that went to the Executive Cabinet on the 4th November 2009, no mention of these failings was reported. Instead a litany of bureaucratic “identified strengths” was reported.
FUND CUTS FOR SERVICES FOR THE BLIND?
According to a letter from the Tameside Blind Association to the Executive Director for Community Services, dated 8th November 2009, and which was received by all councillors, “…there may be a withdrawal of the funding” for the RNIB’s Talking Blind Book Service.
This service costs Tameside Council just £7,500-a-year.
The letter states, “…The services provided by Tameside Libraries… cannot compare with the range offered by the Talking Book Service. we urge you to think again before making the decision to withdraw this service to this vulnerabel group of residents.”
In the meantime, an official Tameside Council news release reports that the Mayor (Cllr. John Sullivan) and Cllr. Jim Fitzpatrick are providing the Tameside Talking News for the Blind with a £450 cheque for a laptop.
Cllr Sullivan said: “I invited the volunteers to the parlour to say thank you for giving up their own time to provide such a valuable service to the local community. However when I realised they were struggling with such old, time consuming and limited equipment I thought we might be able to do something more practical to acknowledge our appreciation of their efforts.”
Cllr Fitzpatrick said: “This is just the kind of cause I’m keen to support as so many people will benefit – not just the volunteers but also the many local people who make use of their service.”
Whilst Labour are happy to boast of a £450 donation, they are not so eager to boast of the £7,500 funding they could be withdrawing.
It appears that what Labour giveth with one hand, they taketh away more with the other.
According to a flawed inspection regime, Tameside is a four-star rated local authority that is very good at producing hanging baskets.
However, the facts I have outlined speak for themselves.
No amount of inspections and hanging baskets can hide these facts – which have an impact on residents every single day.
Whilst Labour congratulates itself on another irrelevant tick box award, they are in self-denial about the reality many residents now face.
Labour has had 30 years to deal with these issues in Tameside, and the borough is still left looking for answers.
This fast-paced video was shown before David Cameron’s closing speech at the Conservative Party Conference 2009 in Manchester.
IT’S A SUN SENSATION! AFTER 12 YEARS OF SUPPORTING LABOUR, THE SUN DROPS BROWN & GIVES ITS SUPPORT TO THE CONSERVATIVES
(Screenshots courtesy of ConservativeHome)
The Sun has officially dumped Gordon Brown, and is now backing David Cameron and the Conservative Party to “put the great back into Great Britain”, and win the next General Election.
Following Brown’s shocking Labour Party Conference speech, Britain’s biggest selling daily newspaper dropped the bombshell earlier today.
In a front page exclusive, the Sun said, “After 12 long years in power, this Government has lost its way. Now it’s lost The Sun’s support too.”
The paper’s editorial went on to explain, “The real story of the Labour years is one of under-achievement, rank failure and a vast expansion of wasteful government interference in everyone’s lives…
“Britain feels broken . . . and the Government is out of excuses.”
Brown was then shamed with a litany of failure.
The Sun outlined how Labour had “FAILED on law and order”, “FAILED on schools”, “FAILED on health”, “FAILED on immigration”, “FAILED our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan”, and, “…FAILED the children they claimed to have made their priority. After 12 years of Blair and Brown, Britain is officially the WORST country in the developed world in which to grow up.”
The paper then turned up the heat, claiming that, “…all along the Government has had one overriding concern: Itself…
“Labour’s driving ambition has not been to improve Britain. It has been to retain power at all costs – with no lie judged too great in its ruthless and relentless self-promotion.”
The Sun finally turned towards the future, and wholeheartedly backed the Conservatives.
“Britain needs a brave and wise Government to restore our self-respect… This will not be a Government that merely talks the talk, as Labour has. It will ACT… We hope, and pray, that the next Government will have the guts and the determination to do these things.
“And we believe David Cameron should lead it.”
The paper concluded,”The Sun believes – and prays – that the Conservative leadership can put the great back into Great Britain.”
(Source: The Guardian)
The Guardian have, this week, produced an excellent ‘atlas’ that illustrates UK Government spending in 2008/09.
In the week, that Gordon Brown finally admitted that Labour would have no choice but to cut public spending, the atlas shows exactly where he spent taxpayers’ money in the last 12 months.
An incredible £620.685bn was spent, including a staggering 49,891 per cent increase in the cost of the Treasury – which snatched an additional £85.5 billion from taxpayers’ pockets to prop up failing financial institutions.
The atlas also illustrates the scale of Gordon Brown’s borrowing, with Britian’s interest on its debt now costing taxpayers £24.1 billion-a-year – up seven per cent on the previous year, and almost as much as the Home Office (including policing) and the entire transport system combined.
To take an audio tour of the UK spending atlas please click here.
For ten years Gordon Brown said there would be no cuts under Labour, but now he has carried out his biggest-ever U-turn.
For Gordon Brown, the CUT is out of the bag…and with it, his last shred of credibility.
Gordon Brown has less than year left before he has to call a General Election. But with a Government that has lost direction and a Prime Minister who has lost control, Britain can’t afford to wait that long.
Labour’s calamitous Government and handling of local services has had a massive impact on local people, while their blatant lies have brought the Denton North East By-Election down to the level of the gutter.
The Conservative candidate, Floyd Paterson, answers Labour’s lies perfectly, with his latest leaflet (click on the images above).