Friday 15 October 2010


There’s one way to guarantee absolutely that defence spending will be protected, and that’s for America to hint that the special relationship would be affected.

And so Mr Fox, describing himself as a “hawk” on defence, has been "swift" (no pun intended) to assure the Americans that, no matter what, Britain will continue to play its part in NATO. As that part has always been to punch well above our weight, then it seems that there may be some re-calculations going on in No 11.

One word from President Obama and Mrs Clinton and you can bet that George Osborne has been sent homeward, "tae think again" about his figures! And it wouldn’t have made any difference if Mr Brown had still been in the driving seat. What must not happen is that there should be any rupture in the so-called “special relationship”.

The Telegraph reports the the American intervention is likely to increase tensions over the scale of the cuts to be announced next week.

Britain is one of a handful of European NATO members that meets the 2% (of GDP) standard, although much of it is wasted on expensive projects that run years late and double in price. Defence spending is predicted to fall as low as 1.7% of GDP.

George Osborne has been pressing for a 10% cut in the defence budget, which Fox has been resisting fiercely. It is thought now that a “midpoint” compromise of around 6% could be reached. That would represent a political victory for Fox but would still leave the Services facing painful losses. (Of course that would have knock-on effects for other services which would simply have to be cut by more.)

Fox and the Defence chiefs have been fighting this batter, leaking letters and letting retired officers speak to the press for months with no result, but one word from America and the budget is changed.

The special relationship of course, is all about Britain retaining a place at the top table. If America no longer feels it can depend completely and totally upon us, then that could well be in jeopardy. After all, with all the up and coming nations in the world, isn’t it slightly ridiculous that the UN Security Council includes the UK and France?

And why is Britain in the G8 when quite clearly we are not one of the richest nations on Earth.

Our “leaders” will do what it takes to ensure that they are still invited to the White House. It would be embarrassing if Brazil, India or Germany were to replace us. And it would leave the British politicians with nothing better to do that involve themselves in the boring issues of running Britain. Yawn

Now....I wonder if Mr Obama would care to intervene over some other issues.


  1. somepapfaedundeeOctober 15, 2010 2:50 pm

    What do you get when you cross a lapdog and a sheep?
    The UK.

    Forget about the right of a people to self-determination, the drive to a more coherent and better connected polity, or even the baser motivation of economics.The cringe-inducing Dom/Sub state of the UK/US relations should be enough to have anyone squirming along to a referendum ballot-box; freedom in hand.

    The Union, still happy to put a rubber gobstopper in your mouth and bend you over for the US - whatever state we're in.

    US: Be like us bitch!
    UK: yes mistress. Please, may I have som... Aaaargh!

  2. Fox has done well defending the MOD, makes a change from the pigmies of Labours era

  3. Succinctly put as ever Dundee. Love that first line! Brilliant!

  4. Whilst I wouldn't argue that Labour had some incredible pigmies in Defence Dean, I would have to point out that Fox has been defending Defence against his own Prime Minister....

  5. Tris,

    Isn't that a ministers job? To defend his department hard and solidly? I call in competence, the fact it is absent in Labours years is due to the idiots the had in the MoD, like Hoon, or Ainsworth ...

  6. Sly as a fox comes to mind and for some reason tri as I do the Tories have dented my faith in being a detterant to defend the poor.

  7. Yes it is Dean, but this has been open warfare.

    Now don't get me wrong, although I really dislike Liam Fox for his fiddling and his bigotted views, I admire him for fighting his corner. I doubt that there are many ministers who have gone so far... but then he knows he has the public (and America) on his side, so, in a way he can't lose. And although Cameron and Osborne are sure to be livid with him they can't do anything.

    TheTtory party, the public and the USA say don't cut the military, and Fox is a bit of a hero of the right wing who don't care for Cameron. So, there you have it, his apparent bravery is explicable. He may be the next leader!! (God help us all)

    On the other hand the (English) public don't care a jot for Scotland, the Americans no longer like us; we're nearly as disliked as the French!! TheTories only care that there should be enough birds for good sport... and worst of all, we have a Liberal Democrat as SoS, and Osborne won't be wanting to do them any, I guess we're stuffed!

    Get ready to write begging letters to the Norwegians.


  8. Defend the poor CH.... Bwa ha ha ha ha....

    Good one!

    There is no UK parliament; no UK government that gives diddly squat about the poor.

    And of course the poor don't help themselves by not voting, or voting for the right wing Labour party.

  9. "There is no UK parliament; no UK government that gives diddly squat about the poor"

    Erm now that isn't entirely true now Tris - is it?

    What about the parliaments which introduced the Beveredge Report? Or ealier, legalised trade union activities?

    Or the ones in the 19th C who extended the franchise outward, eroding the landed interests?

    Come on! That is a strange, not entirely serious comment there Tris!


  10. I meant now... "is" rahter than "was".

    There were I suppose many... including Librals, Labour and tories ... in the past.

    I guess before the trade Unions, and then Thatcherism, and then Blair's sub culture of Thatcherism made it fashionable to be greedy!

    Whatcha think Dean?

  11. I call the Thatcher-Blair legacy 'Blatcherism'.

    I totally agree that it is corrupting, individualistic and perhaps ignores the linearity of history.

    But there are plenty of good and decent parliamentarians working to help the poorest in Westminster. Frank Field is a very noticable one - high profile. Charlie Kennedy, another, and some decent Tories like Damien Green [I like him].

  12. I see that a compromise has been reached after President Obama told David Cameron to do something. So he intervened persoanly and 750 million will be found for Trident after all!

  13. Well Dean, I take your point that there are indeed some decent parliamentarians... but none of the parties really cares a toss....

    I like your name for Blair/Thatcher. Can't tell them apart...but Blair looks older!

  14. Quite remarkably Munguin. Fox has been fighting the corner for a while and getting nowhere. Even his letter to the boss got him nothing. However, a word from Barack Obama and a compromise is reached.

    I know he siad we were the junior partner... but now we're starting to act like a glove puppet.

    How emarrassing; the final humiliation. The American president can, in one word, alter our budgets.

  15. " Our “leaders” will do what it takes to ensure that they are still invited to the White House. It would be embarrassing if Brazil, India or Germany were to replace us"

    You're having a laugh aren't you ? India might be wealthier than us but is a corrupt basket case that you wouldn't trust to clean your toilets.
    Ditto Brazil.
    Germany is ok but doesn't have the stategic location and compliant populace that the UK has.
    It's not always about wealth tris. It's about common language, position in the world ( geographical and links via the Commonwealth and staging posts for wars around the world etc )and reliability. At the end of the day the UK will always support the US and share intelligence and wars over oil etc.
    It's in each others interest.

  16. LOL Ukipper...

    The UK is a corrupt basket case, where people live to a far lower standard than any other comparable European countries, and where life for millions is total and utter misery. It has the highest number of addicts, the most single teenage parents, among the worst record for education and health care, and cancer survival rates. Its roads and railways are a disgrace, it has virtually no industry. It relies on a banking and finance sector that has proved itself utterly and completely incompetent and bent. It has the smallest and the most expensive houses. It has some of the richest people in the world and certainly some of the poorest people in Western Europe.

    It has been governed since the Second World War by a bunch of dip sticks who couldn't run a booze up in a brewery with £50,000 in their pockets.

    The reason the US likes us is that we are compliant. We do what they tell us to do. We virtually always vote with them in the Security Council and we stand shoulder to knee cap with them (We are, after all the junior partner.)

    We copy their ways of doing things although we are not like them. Speaking the same language doesn't make us the same people.

    They talk about sharing the same values.... What are they...torture and complicity in torture? Is that what we share?

    If the “same values” is everyone for himself and the devil take the hindmost... yes, maybe we do.

    You're right though.. It’s in each others' interests.

    It's in their interest to have us doing what we are told, like the junior partners that we are... and it's in our interest to do what we are told, because otherwise they will punt us into nowhereland.

    I see that sice I wrote this piece, it has been confirmed that after Mrs Clinton's intervention Dave has suddenly had a change of heart and Liam is no longer a pain in the arse. The cuts will be far less than had previously (only the other day) been envisaged.

    I note that it was reported that Mr Osborne has been told to take the money off something else.

  17. tris..

    I agree that Britain is a basket case which is why we should be gettting out of the EU and the global warming scam. That would save about £200Bn a year.
    We're not as bad as India though where hundreds of millions live on rubbish tips while corrupt millionaires build houses costing £700m.
    We'll get to that state eventually with the mass immigration of 3rd world scroungers and mingers but we're not there yet.

  18. The only scam on AGW is politians using it as a cash cow or are you a skeptic persay, drum roll Lord Monkton.

  19. cynical...

    I've read some of your posts around the blogosphere and it's time you got a new moniker.


    illiterateHighlander (per se, politicians)






    But at least you comment and join the debate so I appreciate you for that. The more debate the better.

  20. I don't think getting out of the EU would make any difference to the basket case situation of the UK.

    Indeed with out some of the EU rules... and payments to poorer people, the Uk would spend more of it's money on the top people adn less on the disadvantaged.

    I'd prefer people from the third world not to be described as mingers. Some of them are my friends. They are educated, charming, erudite, decent, generous and extremely clean. And 3rd world people don't have aq monopoly on scrounging. Why even the Queen tried to get government aid recently to do up her palaceS (plural). Brits are well known for scrounging as Mr Osborne will be pointing out on Wednesday....

  21. CH is a decent bloke. His comments are extremely interesting and his links add to the discussion. You're right to say he joins in debate...which is good.

  22. Sorry for the lack of blogging today. I was in Perth at the SNP conference where... wait for claim to fame was that I bought Alex Salmond a Coke.

    I poured half of it into his glass, and I was going to drink the other half... but Munguin beat me to it and scoffed the lot....

    Greedy little animal.

    Still next year it's the First Minister's round!!

  23. Red Herring bible.


  24. UKIPer,

    Getting out of the EU is so fanciful you've got me choking on my eurofries! LOL, role on the federal union - and 'ever closer union', just as Churchill would have wanted!

  25. Ah well CH... you know I think it's a load of tosh. I have no intention whatsoever of changing anything I do because of it.

    Love the penguins on the header of the second piece....

  26. Dean...

    I may be worng here, but I thought that Churchill thought the EU was a brilliant idea, even possibly a federal Europe, but he thought Britain far too important to actually be part of it.

    That was for the rest of Europe.

    As I say, I may have misunderstood this.... so I'm willing to be persuaded otherwise.

  27. No you are correct, but I reckon today Churchill, seeing the totally unimportant state of post-imperial UK, he'd sign up for the EU in a heartbeat ...

  28. Dean said..

    " Churchill, seeing the totally unimportant state of post-imperial UK, he'd sign up for the EU in a heartbeat ... "

    You're obviously clueless about the history of Churchill or the history of your country. Millions died for our freedoms and you guys are giving it all away.
    You have no idea how the EU operates since anyone with half a brain can fit you up like a kipper in seconds. You are constantly hung by your own petard.

  29. Giving our freedoms away? What are you on about? Those damn foreigners eh UKIPer?

    You fail to realise that NOT engaging in ever closer union will mean the loss of freedoms! For what is the nation-state outside of a supranational block except a mere conveyor belt for exploitative international capitalism?

    Stop your fear mongering and foreigner bashing please.

  30. "Ah well CH... you know I think it's a load of tosh. I have no intention whatsoever of changing anything I do because of it."

    Fine tris and as such I respect your views what I do object to are the arrogance of some who believe that we are total numpties by not following their particular take on things. One can only laugh when they make statements like "Millions died for our freedoms and you guys are giving it all away." when WW11 was not about freedom of the UK it was about a power struggle between imperialistic Nations trying to dominiate one another. Our freedom was lost in 1707 by the parcel of rogues who took the sovereign pound to sell their country into enslavement to a foreign power and that is what we need to rectify next year.

  31. Dean said...

    " You fail to realise that NOT engaging in ever closer union will mean the loss of freedoms! "

    Ha ha. Like I said Dean. Hung by your own petard.

    cynical said..

    "when WW11 was not about freedom of the UK"

    Ha ha again. So the Battle of Britain was an illusion ? The Germans didn't want to invade us ? The Germans didn't invade France, Poland, Holland etc etc ... ?
    Sometimes it's better to say nothing cynical and let people wonder if you're not very clever rather than spouting nonsense and confirming that you're not very clever.

  32. Oh CH... I don't object to other people following a regime that they think will help the planet. They may be right for all I know. What I know is that while the likes of prince Charles goes flying round the globe in a private jet, I'll not be sitting in the cold to try to save the planet.

    By the same token, I say great to the people who are setting up "green" businesses in Scotland. Jobs are jobs.

    Like i say, what do I know about science? They may me right.

  33. Ukiper. With respect you can't be hung by a petard... only "hoist" "with" it. :0

    No the battle of Britain wasn't an illusion, but CH is right, it was about a power struggle.

    After all we saved a rash of nations from the madman Hitler and his odious regime, and gave them over to Stalin and his even more odious regime.

    I doubt many people in Poland and Czechoslovakia would have thought much of the freedom we won for them.

  34. tris...

    Being a humble person who immediately admits when he's wrong I apologise for the hanging rather than the hoisting :)

  35. Very noble of you Kip.

    It's an easy mistake to make... these petards are dastardly things, going off all over the place.

    I only know because I was forced to study English literature at school instead of Scots Literature....


  36. UKIPer,

    Just how are we 'maintaining' our 'freedoms' by opening the UK up to transnational capitalist exploitation by leaving the supranationalist EU protections?

  37. Dean said...

    " supranationalist EU protections?"

    We'll have to agree to disagree on this 'protection'. I don't see any and know we would be safer out of the EU.
    There's no way to stop foreign utility companies buying up our power sector because it would be against EU regulations.
    There's no way for the UK to set up preferential deals over lamb with New Zealand. Or any product you can think of with anywhere in the world because it's against EU rules. We will pay top rates for all farming products with the billion pound CAP.
    The 'protection' didn't stop Tata closing down Teeside steel mill and moving to India with the work because it was funded by EU carbon credits.
    We can't protect our jobs market for UK workers because we must accept an unlimited number of EU citizens into the country despite the rising unemployment levels.
    I could go on but know I'm wasting my time. You're not bothered.