Author Archives: admin

Flooding and Power Cuts December 2015

The north west of England and southern Scotland have suffered deep and widespread flooding from ‘Storm Desmond’ during the first week of December.  A band of heavy rain coupled with high winds caused rivers to burst their banks.  Carlisle was … Continue reading

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High Speed Rail 6 years earlier

Today the government announced the high speed line to Crewe will be completed in 2027, or six years earlier than planned.  This could reduce the London to Crewe journey time by 45 minutes although we need to know if the … Continue reading

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Why does the MP for Aberdeen want to vote on English only laws

English Votes for English Laws seems a logical position but is strongly disputed by some. There are those who say it creates 2 tiers of MP and that Westminster MPs are elected to a UK institution not an English one. … Continue reading

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Visit of Xi Jinping to the UK, investment and steel price

This week the big news is the visit of the President of China, Xi Jinping, to the UK.   Chinese investment in UK nuclear power is one of the main topics and a contract will be signed for Hinckley Point … Continue reading

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The Beauty of the North West

The North West of England is a great place to live.  The northern half is all hills and lakes with attractive towns like Ambleside and Keswick.  Even the roads are great, the M6 winds through the hills at Tebay and … Continue reading

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Pension Freedom Almost Here

Not long until April when those aged 55 can withdraw cash  from their pension pot and spend it.  This is a huge decision and not something to be taken without thinking and taking a lot of advice from as many … Continue reading

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Tuition Fee reduction promise

Labour are offering a cut in tuition fees to £6000 if they win the election.  Certainly this is to be supported.  £6000 was the original level the Coalition proposed and £9000 was to be only for the top universities.  However … Continue reading

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Defence Spending Cuts

There is debate about whether UK defence spending should be 2% of GDP.   Some say Russia spends 4% and is increasing it, the USA spends 4% and is decreasing.  Some such as wealthy Germany only spend 1.3%.  Considering relative … Continue reading

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Greek Elections

There is a lesson in the Greek election result.  Politicians can push a population so far but then it decides enough is enough and will go where no-one dared to go.  With 25% unemployed, an economy shrunk by 20% it’s … Continue reading

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Wealthiest 1% in the world and overseas aid

This week there is surprise that Oxfam claim the wealthiest 1% own more than the other 99% in the world. Another surprise is that a not too large £550,000 puts you into that 1%. With £55,000 you are in the … Continue reading

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Trident replacement?

The North West has an interest in the Trident replacement.  The submarines are built in Barrow and an alternative solution may involve aircraft from Lancashire. Nuclear weapons are a horror there can be little doubt.   They are unanswerable in conflict … Continue reading

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2015 General Election Forecasts, Lancashire

There will be a lot of General Election forecasts between now and May.  We found a seat by seat forecast written by Ian Dale who has Conservative leanings but has nothing to gain by being wrong.  So below is a … Continue reading

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20mph Speed Limits – any logic

The 20mph speed limits in residential areas seem to have a case, especially as I get older – can’t have all those people dashing about.  But is it the case of the sledgehammer and the nut. Looking at the UK … Continue reading

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English MPs to vote on English matters?

Today William Hague announced proposals for democratic decision making in parliament after giving more power to Scotland.  Basically it means English MPs voting on English only matters, Scottish MPs not voting on English only matters.  Sounds simple, sounds sensible but … Continue reading

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Inflation 1%, petrol 115p a litre

December has brought cheaper petrol and inflation dropped to 1%.  This seems like great news.  Will those businesses whose main costs are fuel reduce their prices?  Airlines with their fuel surcharges, buses.  Gas prices usually reflect the price of oil … Continue reading

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Who will land on Mars first

The USA stepped up its space programme yesterday with the test launch and recovery of the Orion capsule designed for a manned journey to Mars and back.   The flight was the first time an inhabitable capsule has gone beyond … Continue reading

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The Working Class can …….

It was a decent, if a bit juvenile, joke long ago to change the words of the Red Flag to ‘the working class can kiss my ass, I’ve got the foreman’s job at last’.  Now many commentators are saying it’s … Continue reading

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That’s Living Alright – Pensions below poverty.

Low pay £7.69/hr or 2/3 of median wage.    £307 a week. Poverty £5.78 or 1/2 median wage.  £231 a week. Minimum wage £6.50/hr.  £260 a week. Living wage £7.89.  £315 a week. State Pension £2.85!  £113 a week. Based … Continue reading

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Vote for better Trains in the North

Politicians are rushing to make friendly noises towards the north using promises of better trains.    We have High Speed 2 which David Cameron says he supports. High Speed 3 which George Osborne is supporting.  Replacement of old trains which … Continue reading

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Ed Miliband’s Senate

Ed Miliband declared that a Senate will replace the House of Lords.  This is meant to make the upper chamber more representative of the whole of the UK.  It will also be elected.  It seems a logical proposal as the current … Continue reading

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