Quote of the day 26th September 2021

"Not since Gordon Brown’s unwise declaration of support for ‘British jobs for British workers’ has a Labour leader wrapped himself so decisively in the Union flag. What’s significant is that none of this – not a sentence or comma – would be remotely legal if Britain were still an EU member. 

Offering favouritism and public contracts to British firms would have the European Court of Justice descending on parliament like a tonne (metric measures only) of bricks. 

Yet here we are, one of, if not the, most enthusiastic supporters of British EU membership, basing his entire economic prospectus on a legal structure that can only be made to work outside the European Union."

(Extract from a review by Tom Harris on the CAPX site of Sir Keir Starmer's 12,000 magnum opus "The Way forward."

I commend this review because it is neither a hatchet job nor a sycophantic puff piece in support: Harris is not afraid to both criticize what he thinks is wrong and praise what he thinks is right. As such the article should be of interest to both intelligent Conservatives seeking to understand our main opposition and intelligent Labour supporters seeking to learn how their leader's approach is perceived by open-minded former friends. You can read the full review here.)


Jim said…
I know its not related to this, though i could tie it in by the HGV driver "shortage". But what are your thoughts on the current "fuel crisis"?
Personally, well actually like most of the country, I think the initial blame lies firmly with the government as the HGV driver issue has been building for over 10 years. As has the energy crisis which everyone (except those in westminster) could see coming for years with no new nuclear.

The main portion of the current fuel crisis though is the media, pretty much creating a self fullfilling crisis by triggering panic buying. Then of course we cant rule out the public, well the proportion of them that went out panic buying. I went to buy a hose from B&Q yesterday and had difficulty getting out for the petrol queue at morrisons. I guess some people even had to clear the stash of toilet roll from the garage to make way for gerry cans.

This particular issue affects me to a lesser extent as we only have one dinosaur poo car, mine is an EV, but when the media can cause such a crisis, one that at worst will cost lives because people cant travel, most likely to try and make a narritive of how bad brexit is, well that needs to be looked at.
Chris Whiteside said…
I agree with many of your points. The HGV driver shortage has indeed been building for a long time. Since there are similar shortages of drivers in quite a few countries on the continent it appears unlikely that the problem is entirely caused by Brexit, although this may be a supporting factor.

The fact that tens of thousands of driving tests have been delayed by the pandemic is also a major factor and probably a much more important one than Brexit.

I agree with you that we need new nuclear.

Although we genuinely do have a shortage of HGV drivers, Britain does not have an underlying shortage of fuel and there is more than enough transport capacity to get normal usage of petrol and diesel to the petrol stations.

The temporary shortages at petrol stations appear to have been almost entirely due to self-fulfilling predictions in the media and the response of some members of the public to those stories - it was a problem made in Fleet Street. And a self-inflicted wound.

Once it started almost anything politicians said could only make matters worse - saying "Don't panic!" only encourages people to panic and saying "Don't act like idiots" only offends people.

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