World watch – Saturday

Friday GMT

WorldWatch2

For posting on events, news, opinions and anything of interest from around the world.

27 Comments

  1. Missy

     /  May 5, 2018

    Yesterday were local elections in England. In the lead up to the elections the Liberal Democrats and Labour tried to make the elections about national issues and as a de facto General Election, whilst the Conservatives vacillated between national and local issues, on the one hand trying to counter the narrative of the Lib Dems and Labour, on the other trying to keep the focus on local issues.

    Labour got a bit caught up in their own Social Media London Bubble and believed that they would not only retain every council they owned, but more importantly take the prize London councils of Westminster, Wandsworth, and Kensington & Chelsea off the Conservatives, they also believed that they would take Barnet which had no clear majority.

    The election results proved mixed for Labour and Conservatives, however, the big winners were the Liberal Democrats who gained in the number of overall council seats and took two London boroughs off the Conservatives. The biggest losers were UKIP who lost over 100 council seats across England and were essentially wiped out.

    For Labour and Conservatives they both made gains and losses, Labour gained more seats than the Conservatives, however, they lost a couple of boroughs to the Conservatives, meanwhile the Conservatives lost one borough to Labour, gained a couple, and managed to hold their main London Boroughs of Wandsworth, Westminster, and Kensington & Chelsea, the Conservatives also managed to win Barnet. (I am going to talk on that in a separate post as it is a unique situation).

    On a personal note in my borough it remained Labour (it has been Labour since the 1940’s). I was not too exercised initially for these elections as I had seen very little (well actually no) campaigning from the major parties in my area, it was like Labour just assumed they would win, the Conservatives couldn’t be bothered because they knew they wouldn’t win, and there weren’t enough EU citizens for the Liberal Democrats to care. However, about 6 weeks ago a group of local residents got together and formed a local party to look at local issues, they are residents who are sick of the Labour run council ignoring our wards and treating the residents with contempt. They stood candidates in the two wards in our area, (think suburb in NZ, but much bigger), focussed on the issues that local residents are concerned about, they aren’t left or right, just local. Disappointingly they did not win their seats, but they did come second which is an amazing achievement considering how quickly they were formed as a party. I voted for this party as to me the local elections should be about what matters in a local area not about what the national agenda of a major party is, but also I voted for them as I – like many in my area – feel that the borough council ignore us and our concerns as residents.

    • Missy

       /  May 5, 2018

      I should have mentioned the summary of results above was when only 145 of 150 boroughs had been returned, we are now at 149 and it is looking a little worse for the Conservatives having lost a couple more councils, but it is still not the disaster that was predicted for them.

      Noting that in local politics it is usually Labour that perform better than the Conservatives, and at this point in the electoral cycle (8 years in opposition and a weak Government) it would be expected that Labour did much better in the local elections.

    • sorethumb

       /  May 5, 2018

      How many people vote?

  2. A down side of playing tough on Iran:

  3. Unashamedly playing to some of his base:

    “We will protect your Second Amendment.”

    • Gezza

       /  May 5, 2018

      5 million of them paid $30 million to buy him. They own him.

      • “We are all finally putting America first.”

      • David

         /  May 5, 2018

        “5 million of them paid $30 million to buy him. They own him.”

        Dustin Moskovitz and Cari Tuna paid $35m for Hillary. They own her.
        Paloma Partners paid $21m for Hillary. They own her.
        Soros Fund Management paid $11m for Hillary, They own her.
        Slim-Fast Foods only paid $6m. They just own her toe.

        • Blazer

           /  May 5, 2018

          thats how democracy works…the Corporations donate to and own the politicians,even draft the legislation for them.
          And of course the banks own…Corporations.

          • David

             /  May 5, 2018

            “And of course the banks own…Corporations.”

            All the top donors to Clinton are hedge funds, don’t they own the banks?

        • Gezza

           /  May 5, 2018

          That’s another thing. Calls himself a deal maker & sells himself for a pittance! 😡

          • David

             /  May 5, 2018

            Pittance? Didn’t he sell himself to become President?

            • Gezza

               /  May 5, 2018

              Bugger. Let me get back to you.

            • David

               /  May 5, 2018

              Compare the numbers;

              Hillary ‘spent’ $1.4bn and failed to become president
              Trump ‘spent’ $957m and actually became president

              Who got sold?

            • Gezza

               /  May 5, 2018

              Well they all get sold David. That’s how American politics works. It’s a dung heap. All that has happened is the current turd on top is very noisy & erratic.

    • David

       /  May 5, 2018

      Truly shocking, a politician doing the things the people who voted for him wanted him to do. There aught to be a law……

  4. Missy

     /  May 5, 2018

    As mentioned above Barnet was an interesting case in the local elections.

    Barnet had previously been in no overall control, essentially no party had an outright majority on the council after a councillor had resigned, prior to that the Conservatives had a 1 seat majority.

    It was widely anticipated that due to the fine majority Labour would take Barnet from the Conservatives, partly due to a higher than average Jewish vote. Many in the Jewish communities in Britain are labour, and Barnet had an increase in voting population from Jewish backgrounds, and that combined with unhappiness at the direction of the Conservatives on a national level, Labour believed they would win in Barnet. It was considered such a shoe-in that Labour had organised a victory parade of sorts with Jeremy Corbyn in Barnet today, media had been invited and it was generally all ready to go.

    However, this did not happen, the Conservatives won Barnet. One Labour Councillor who lost his seat in Barnet said that it was the failure of the leadership at a National level to deal with anti-semitism that cost Labour Barnet. The message that Labour activists, Labour candidates, and Labour MPs were getting on the doorstep in Barnet was that those that would normally vote Labour couldn’t this time due to the anti-semitism in the Labour party, and the failure of the leadership to do anything about it. More than one Labour official from Barnet was on the radio today laying the blame of losing Barnet on anti-semitism in Labour, and this is due to the high Jewish population in Barnet and their perception that they are no longer safe in the Labour party.

    This borough is the one that represents the impact of Labour’s anti-semitism scandal and more importantly the failure of the leadership to have done anything about it.

    One former Labour Councillor in Barnet has called on Jeremy Corbyn to go to Barnet and face the Jewish community, face the activists, and face the candidates who lost, and to apologise to them and tell them what he will do to eradicate the anti-semitism in Labour.

    • Blazer

       /  May 5, 2018
      • Missy

         /  May 5, 2018

        A few comments on the opinion piece Blazer linked to.

        That articles is about a General Election and looking at the voting patterns on a national level, also looking at the Jewish community UK wide, which has different voting patterns than when you look at small areas in isolation.

        The ‘conclusions’ in my post were based on those who were actually campaigning and talking to the Jewish community in Barnet, it was in no way reflective of – or meant to represent – the UK as a whole, or Jewish people in the UK as a whole. It was about this one Borough in London with a large Jewish Community that had always voted Labour.

        An opinion piece talking about a GE and the UK wide Jewish population is irrelevant when reporting on experiences in a local borough that has a particular history that is not the same as other parts of the UK.

    • MaureenW

       /  May 5, 2018

      The Meuller clown show needs winding up. Don’t hear much about Russian collusion anymore – all Stormy Daniels.

      • Gezza

         /  May 5, 2018

        Well why can’t she say nasty things about someone on tv & in the press and become famous & a reality tv star too?

        • MaureenW

           /  May 5, 2018

          She can, my point was more about Meuller – don’t know if you’ve been keeping up Gezza, but the collusion is on the other side. Colluding to get rid of Trump / prevent his presidency since before he was elected.
          I hope Trump nails the lot of them.

          • Gezza

             /  May 5, 2018

            No I haven’t bothered keeping up with that Maureen. I’m sure that will all work itself out in a typically American Justice System way. Greatest democracy in the world according to some so shouldn’t be any problems there. I’m more interested in keeping up with the whining lying clown’s Twitter feed & the reactions to his bullshitting & crapping on his poor doting servants n stuff like that. That’s what a minority of Americans wanted as their President so I’m just bemusedly observing America at its best and worst, telling the rest of the world they’re the greatest.

  5. sorethumb

     /  May 5, 2018