Saturday 1 October 2011


What can we expect to hear from the Tories at this week’s conference in Manchester...?

Well Francis Maude, you’ll remember him doubtless as the guy who was wanted every single man, woman, child and dog, to do something for the Big Society, but actually couldn't pinpoint one single thing that HE did for it, well, he is going to announce a restriction on the Civil Servants’ entitlement to take part in Trades Union activity whilst at work. Doubtless because the government in London expects there to be a considerable amount of disruption in the next year and want to make it as difficult as possible for them to organise it. So, some might think, a good thing, but probably not if you’re department staffing is being cut and you are expected, for the same money, to take on a number of new duties.

Tessie Kinky Boots May, is looking at the repeal of the Human Rights Act. (I’m not clear whether this will apply in Scotland, as, as I understand it, HR legislation was introduced in the Scotland Act). Again, I suspect that many people will be happy with that announcement. Of course, once you give a government carte blanche to ride roughshod over their human rights who knows what they will do. What Tess needs to do is to bring in legislation that stops lawyers making so much money from the cases. And the courts could try being a bit more sensible. Interestingly Ken Clarke recently said that it was inconceivable that the government would repeal the HR act; and the Liberals made it clear that it was here to stay, only last week. A huge plus from my point of view is that it would surely be out of the question for a country which had repealed legislation which it wrote and which was adopted by all of Europe, to go to war to enforce human rights elsewhere. So, we should save a few quid that way.

We’ve all heard that Plan B to restart the economy is to allow 80mph on motorways. I don’t know about that, but it should bring in a lot more money in petrol taxes, and car repairs. Yes, I know there is no limit on most German motorways, but then they don’t have potholes big enough to swallow a small European country.

It’s been a little unfortunate for Cammy that a couple of experts have poured scorn on some of the policies and personalities, just as conference is beginning. Mike Slade, chairman of the Conservative Property Forum, and a developer himself, has said that he is shocked by the naivety of ministers because they have never been in the real world, and describes Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, as ‘a kid who doesn’t understand planning’. Oops. Then the Commons Treasury chairman said that Osborne was pursuing a strategy better suited to times of abundance rather than austerity. Oops again.

I’m left without a great deal of confidence in what this coalition is up to. 


  1. Is the picture above Munguin's Republic's version of page 3. It certainly works for me!

    This is my fourth attempt to comment (voice in the background says "I don't know why you bothered") on this article.

    It seems that the Tories on a UK national basis are facing the same confusion as the North British branch with the added factor of keeping their coalition partners happy. Promises of ermine all round, no doubt.

    Can't help wondering if Fraser wins the 'leadership' contest, and forms an independent Scottish branch, whether they would think the unthinkable and support independence in order to attempt to take votes from, primarily, the SNP but also from other parties.

    It would appear that they would have little to lose but much to gain.

    I've got a sneaking feeling that Dean would support that.

    PS: Great comment on the pot-holes.

  2. Tris

    This part of the Tory conference might interest you.

    I liked this part,

    In the speech, Goldie will urge Conservative members from across the UK to back the Union. She will add: "Put at its simplest, being Scottish and British - or English or Welsh or Northern Irish and British - is a state of mind. It's the way we feel, it is the way we are. Proud of our distinctive cultures and traditions, proud of our partnership together. It just is."

    "It just is" thats me convinced, what a powerful argument.

  3. bottle fed tripletOctober 02, 2011 11:56 am

    They can't repeal the yuman rites act as it's a provisio for being a member of the EU. And they will never leave the EU. LiblabCon support the EU. We will be wandering the ruins of Strasbourg and Brussels long after everyone else has left.
    The 80mph limit is upcoming EU Law so is being brought in early to avoid being labelled 'pandering to EU policy'. Same with MOT rules etc..
    I wonder if the Tories hire better singers than Labour for their end of conference singalong..

  4. John... is Blogger playing up with you too? I've had problems again, but Mil suggested this pop out box for comments and that seems to work. (Why bother? Because I'd be cut to the core if you gave up on the Republic.)

    I've also switched to a new editing system and that has given added benefits of being able, once again, to change font and colour.

    I can't help thinking the Tories missed a trick with the EU debate.

    Instead they seem to be prepared to waste parliamentary time. (Not included in the post, but I heard it this morning on radio.) There has been an epetition with more than 100,000 signatures asking for a referendum on the UK coming out of the EU. The leader of the Commons has a greed to a debate, but Wee Willie has said that there will be no referendum. Britain should be at the centre of the EU, blah, blah... usual trash

    Now I take no particular stand on it. There are good and bad things to be said for it. But my two points are:

    The Tories could make themselves very popular, so much so that they wouldn't need the Liberals any more, by taking the UK out of Europe;

    and, if there will be no referendum, no matter the outcome of the debate, why waste time with the debate. It's not like there's nothing else to do.

    MPs would be better occupied getting some tar and filling the bloody pot holes...


    As for Murdo's plans, of which we seem to have heard little recently. There is clearly a need for a right of centre party. There are many people whose inclinations are right of centre. In a decent voting system the Tories are far better represented than the one Westminster member that they have suggests.

    I think though, like you, that that a complete break with the English party would be a boost to their numbers, and yes, I can think of quite a few people who would vote for that party if it supported independence, including some bloggers.

    What say you, Dean?

  5. Ah yes, Dubs. The intellectual force of that argument is hard to dispute.

    Except, my response would be... 'Nah, it just isn't'.

    I welcome the arguments that turn against what some of the English Tories (notably Boris) have been saying about the Scots being subsidised by them (bloody cheek from Boris considering London is subsidised by everyone), and the plain fact that we DON'T get more money than we need and so can do decent things. Instead we cut other things so that we can do decent things. Our priorities are just different.

    I'm proud of those priorities. I wish we could do more. But hats off to Annabel for saying that. It won't go down well with the crowd.

  6. Suggestions that the EU poke its nose into speed limits were rejected by the Tories. In any case, they want to REDUCE speed limits, not put them up to reduce accidents.

    Tessie seems to think that they can come out of the Human Rights legislation:

    Imagine it's because she'd like to be able to tie people up and whip them. They say that quite a few MPs are like that!!

  7. bottle fed tripletOctober 02, 2011 12:47 pm

    I can't say I'm surprised at the ignorance of Tories wrt the ECHR . Although I expect they know the truth but are playing to their audience. Kidding on we can negotiate with the EU. The Lisbon Treaty, signed by snotty when he sneaked into Brussels under cover of darkness, means EU members must accede to the ECHR as it is..

    "mandatory, under the Lisbon Treaty, which entered into force on December 1, 2009."( Protocol 14 to the Convention, which will enter into force in June 2010)

  8. Tris

    Do not know if you've seen the Tory version of Labour Hame.

    I particularly liked the bit at the bottom of the comments section, "we need to make sure you are human" not expecting many torys along then.

  9. I think it was Lisbon he sneaked into actually, triplet, but you certainly have a point.

    Tess of the Horribles was probably just getting carried away. It's fair to say that many a thing that is talked about at conference is an entertainment rather than a reality.

    Most of it won't happen. That goes for the other lot too.

  10. LOL Dubs...

    What a load of rubbish these people blether.

    Jackson is the very worst of them. He only needs the handbag and a blue skirt and he IS Mrs Thatcher.

    His questions seem relatively unimportant from what I can see, but it seems that now there is going to be a schism ... whatever way the vote goes.

    Cameron is backing wee Ruth, which I would suggest spells the death of her campaign.

    The must have removed the comments though Dubs. There are none there now!

  11. Tris

    Maybe no one human was interested enough to comment.

  12. True true Dubs.... I certainly wasn't.

    I wonder who had the brilliant idea to copy Tom Tit's idea, with the little bit of tartan and the Scot's name?