Gavin Maclure's Musings

My take on politics locally, nationally and internationally


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WATCH: Tim Stanley: I Vow to Thee, My Country

BBC Question Time these days is usually far too right-on, metropolitan elite for my liking but last night was different because the new hero of the Right, Daily Telegraph blogger Tim Stanley, was on the panel.

The questions turned to Scottish Independence. Move over Darling (as an E. Blackadder would say) and unleash Mr Stanley into the Better Together campaign. Superb, superb, superb.

I was in Belgium this week and colleagues were comparing Scotland and England to Belgium and The Netherlands and the historical rivalry between their two countries which divides Belgium north to south (yes, indeed that bastion of EU-philia is not united themselves) but there is a slight difference: Scotland and England are the SAME country – and may our wonderful union continue for ever more. Vote No our Scottish friends on 18th September and stay with us.

Hat-tip to Guido Fawkes for video.


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The Conservative Party still cannot connect with its supporters

Non-politician Anna Soubry

Non-politician Anna Soubry

I was watching BBC Question Time last night and they had that ghastly woman, Anna Soubry, on again. Some may ask why I say such an awful thing as she is a Conservative. Yes, well the difference between Tories and Socialists is us Tories have independent minds and don’t just bleat away whatever the leader tells them to say.

Miss Soubry is one of those non-politicians who never says anything meaningful and spends her whole time shovelling platitudes on to minority interest groups in a desperate overcompensation for being a Tory in the hope voters will not think she is evil. She doesn’t seem to realise most voters don’t think the Tories are evil – a lot of people used to vote for the Conservative Party, especially in times of Conservative governments, not the mish-mash Coalition we have today.

Last night Anna Soubry excelled herself in her response to fellow panelist Nigel Farage’s answer to a question on immigration. Soubry, as all liberal wets and socialists do, tried to shut the debate down by by accusing the UKIP leader of putting “fear in people’s hearts” and he was being “prejudice”. She might as well have accused Mr Farage of being a “raaacist” and have done with it.

The junior defence minister was earlier exposed for not knowing her defence brief when she said it was “just not true” that South Korea is building four Royal Navy tankers in the week the shipyard in Portsmouth was closed – in fact, it is true! Anna Soubry then was rattled and lost control, just like the Coalition government continues to do over immigration.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage

UKIP leader Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage, earlier on the programme, had recalled an exchange with David Blunkett on BBC Question Time ten years ago when the former Labour Home Secretary said there would be just 13,000 Poles a year who would come to the UK after EU accession in 2004. “I said that was nonsense because logic said if you extend to poor people the ability to come to a rich country they’ll come in huge numbers. And in the first two years, 800,000 people came. That…is a fact”, the UKIP leader told last night’s audience.

This then sparked Anna Soubry’s rant. It would seem any mention of immigration, in Soubry’s mind, must be shut down, never to be discussed. This was despite the programme being broadcast from Boston, Lincolnshire, which has seen one of the highest influx of East Europeans in the last decade meaning it takes two weeks for local residents to get a doctor’s appointment and the local schools and hospitals are creaking under the strain of catering for a population size the public services were never designed for.

David Cameron’s election strategist, Lynton Crosby, was probably watching with his head in his hands. He was understood to be furious when another liberal wet, Ken Clarke, called UKIP supporters “clowns” just before the English County Elections, when Ukip pushed many Tory incumbents into third place. Since then senior Conservative ministers have been told to zip it.

But either Lynton Crosby has changed tactics or Soubry didn’t get his memo, just like she didn’t get her full briefing on defence I guess!?!?