ICM have a new poll out in tomorrow’s Guardian showing Labour in the lead. Topline figures, with changes from ICM’s last poll a month ago, are CON 35%(-2), LAB 37%(nc), LDEM 18%(nc). The poll was conducted directly after Ed Miliband’s conference speech, on Tuesday and Wednesday.

This is the lowest any poll from any company has put the Conservatives since the general election, though that’s probably connected to the high Liberal Democrat score. There is a significant spread in Lib Dem support across different pollsters – YouGov tend to show them between 12-14%, the most recent polls from Populus, MORI and ComRes all had the Lib Dems at 14-15%, ICM have them steady up at 18%.

In other findings, concerns about the spending cuts continue to creep upwards 43% said they thought cuts had gone too far as opposed to 37% who think the balance is about right, slightly less supportive since than in July. However, the coalition continues to be trusted more on the economy than Labour – 50% think they are best to ensure a prosperous future compared to 31% for Labour.

On Ed Miliband, 28% think he will move the Labour party to the left, 41% think he will keep it in the centre and 8% think he will move it rightwards.

A final intriguing point was ICM’s question on what people would like to happen at the next election. The overall picture was that 40% wanted a Conservative led government (19% on their own, 21% with the Lib Dems), 39% a Labour led government (26% on their own, 13% with the Lib Dems). The interesting bit was that amongst Conservative voters only 50% wanted the Conservatives on their own, 41% prefered a Con-LD coalition. In contrast, when YouGov have asked the same question they have found 72% of Conservatives would prefer the party to rule alone, 25% prefer the Con-LD coalition.

317 Responses to “ICM/Guardian – 35/37/18”

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  1. Eoin

    Are you a political trannie? You know, undergoing a change to become a bluey?

  2. @sue marsh

    “I don’t know why you all still rise to Eoin’s “predictions”/ (Best Tory economic figures in 2014 since 2007, Labour needing the Libs for a majority etc.)/ The fact that he’s got most of them wrong and Colin’s posts now always begin with “Good post Eoin” show that he’s taking a very conciliatory approach to posting at the moment.”

    Aha- someone else has noticed that @Eoins ‘assertions’ don’t materialize :-)

    Also that @Colin seems to think saying ‘good post’ to anything Eoin writes gets him off the partisan hook for his posts to other people ;-)


    In the context of you thinking trots and members of other political parties have a “perfect right” to influence the Labour party leadership election with a vote I am happy to use barred/ excluded/ ‘member of another party has no right to influence internal Labour party politics with a leadership vote/ recommendation’.

    It does not often work as these people intend either. In the USA in 2007-8 it backfired on Republican operatives who thought that by influencing Democratic open primaries- and electing Obama as Democratic candidate- then the Dems’s would never win.

    Lets hope- for all our sakes- the extra influence of the Trot left on the Union college has positive rather than negative effects. We shall see.

    Closed primaries- the majority approach in the states not open primaries BTW- are the way to go if you use primaries as a nomination process. Not sure you need to in any case.

  3. Mike N

    “fist mention of ‘UKplc’ – Yes the phrase has that effect on me as well – the urge to hit whoever uses it.

    Mind you, when you consider how most plcs treat their small shareholders, maybe it’s more appropriate than those using it think.

    Also anyone who runs a small business like a plc will soon find they have neither.

    Actually the phrase never went away; but it always acts as a good indicator that the person using it knows nothing about running a business or a country.

  4. “David Cameron holds out the prospect of tax cuts for the middle classes as he makes clear his intention to “give something back” from a stronger economy.”
    Can’t be any clearer, can he?

  5. Barney,

    Low corp works for small fish- feeder economies if you like. They need a compettive edge over the heavily infranstructure and skilled workforces they compete with.

    On production line products such as that of intel or in the case of Turkey, gas boilers, low corp is essential. For high end products obv. Ire is in a weak position competitively.

    UK fails to take account of Ireland’s the Czechs or Turkey’s postion in Core-periphery economics. If Scotland was independant, it too would benefit from low corp (as would NI) but in a Social Deomcracy like Sweden, Germany or dare I say it even Britian, were the biggest customer is the state, then a corp tax is simply a gift to the SMEs who already have so many other financial tools to siphon of profits…

    Contrary to what GO thinks, Éire and UK are not a like for like comparison. But I would not altogether disagree with Salmond.

    If Scotland was released from its subjugation as a feeder economy to London Plc. it would benefit from low corp.

    As for the housbuilding and AIB link- you are correct… although these days it tends to be hotels an dhigh end luxury proporty market that caused much of the difficulties.

  6. Roger Mexico

    Spot on

  7. @Roger Mexico

    Just spotted your joke, too (re ‘fist’)

  8. Eoin-

    “I think it is juvenile and unimaginative to build your tax policy around banker and millionaire bashing”

    Were it only the case young Eoin that we were able to actually bash the bankers- its like naked wrestling whilst covered in olive oil.

    Put simply- I believe in people paying their fair share of tax: don’t you ;-)

    Consensus outside of no 10 and 11 in other European and G8 finance ministries is that they need to pay more due to their central involvement (creation) in the mess we are now in.

    Oh but now I remember- you are one of those who don’t actually believe (in denial) that we are in a fiscal mess aren’t you?!

    I see where you are coming from now with the facile comment :-)

  9. Rob S,

    Has it occurred to you that so many blues have been frightened off posting on the forum that you have resultantly pigeon holed colin as a right wing authoritarian. Even if he were it would not change my approach to his posts.


    If you take the time to disect his thoughtful posts he is a slightly right of centre libertarian. Also, political opponents have a capacity to care about the big issues in EXACTLY the same portions as a lefty. Righties and lefties both care they just disagree how to get there. In addition, I have learned tremendously from taking the time to understand my political opponents. Every single post from them has caused me to change my mind in some way. That is a good thing.

    On that point, your closed prinaries would be an improvement on the current model of electing a leader.

    Lastly, but most importantly, I am a humanist. I would gain no comfort from ganging up to bash political opponents.

  10. Eoin- I know very well how @Colin posts: I get enough of them in response to mine ;-)

    Hence my opinion.

    Which is not shifted by him being polite about your assertions, er, predictions and your contrarian social libertarianism positions on most issues. The former I find amusing in their inaccuracy; the latter I find parochial and derivative.

    I look at things from a social democratic/ centre left perspective and a lot of what @Colin says- but especially his views on the role of the state and the notion of ‘equality’- are not centrist.

    But I know you are just trying to stir things up you cad :-)

  11. Rob S,

    Two inaccuracies. ‘Stirrng’ is not my tipple. I do not gain any comfort from acrimony of any sort :) Honestly.
    Secondly, your the first ever to describe me as a libertarian :) I said Colin was one, I did not say I was one. I scored quite right on the socilly conservative quadrant. If I kept a little list of all of the adjective you and two of your cohorts have ascribed me, well….. it would not be a little list. Unfortunately, I am have the emotional intelligence of a plank and do not get most of your insults. Although I have had people explain pompous to me :)

  12. Rob S,

    I have observed Colin’s replies to be polite with most people. Unlike me he tends to treat people as he finds them, which is probably why he tends to reply to you a little more brusquely.

  13. @Roger Mexico – Glad you mentioned the ‘More or Less’ link. I caught it the first time, and rarely a week goes by when the FT guy does not pick up some lousy use of statistics or dodgy maths.

    GO gives the headline benefit bill… and then elides to imply this represents out-of-work benefits.
    In fact more than half is pensions. Add in child benefit, working/family tax credit/housing benefit and there is a diminishing return to be made from clawing back from the unemployed.
    Unless of couse the chancellor is expecting a very significant increase in the jobless total.

  14. @Nick Hadley,
    Re your 12-30 post.I strongly agree.My husband is self employed and up till May his business was doing well after the recession.Now orders are tailing off and even more worryingly we are starting to have cancellations of work previously ordered.As you say this is before the cuts and before the VAT rise.If as someone suggested, the threatened cuts are some cynical ploy then the coalition should realise that they are playing with peoples livelihoods.

  15. [email protected]
    c.c. Colin

    “I have learned tremendously from taking the time to .nderstand my political opponents. Every single post from themcauses me to change my mind in some way. That is a good thing.”

    Eoin,I think it is really important to be prepared to change one’s mind – I applaud you for it. :-)

    However I don’t think Colin shares this view. I cannot recall him posting anything that would portray reds, public sector employees or trades unions in a positive light. Not even a glimmer!

  16. @ Mike N and Barney Crockett

    Thanks both, very kind: always glad to invest a smile in a serious business. John

  17. Valerie,

    Thank you for your post. Obviously Colin has to speak for himself on that. Also, some of our positional or mind changing is sub-concious and it is a natural human reaction to want to resist it. Theoretically, whether anyone who likes it or not, we all change our mind continually. Nick Clegg and his motley crew are probably the best example of that…. The question is what direction does our mind changing take us? :) Rather incoherently and haphazardly is probably the honest answer although the conscious mind could never allow it to be so… :) I find as long as your guided by principle, you have to trust yourself to be open minded on as many things as you can bring yourself to bear. Sorry for that ramble Valerie.

  18. @Roger Mexico

    You are right that one wouldn’t start from here but the change from Housing Benefit to Local Housing Allowance has made matters worse. HB was/is still paid on a large number of older tenancies and relates to the actual premises and rent paid. The LHA calculates a median rent based on a Broad Market Area for types of property eg one-bed flat in a particular area. LHA is applied to all new claims in the private rented sector.
    The older HB payments are only 90% of the level of LHA payments. The median is too generous and GO is moving this to the 30 percentile which will bring LHA payments more in line with the older HB.
    If the rent paid is lower than the LHA payment then the tenant can keep up to £15 pw of the difference as a bonus. This occurs in 47% of all LHA payments so again it appears that the LHA is too generous. This payment will be stopped from next year.
    Most importantly the LHA payment has distorted the rental market by putting upward pressure on the lower end of the market. The mean has been raised though the median stayed static. Interestingly the average rent paid by those not in receipt of benefits is around 90% of the LHA level.
    It seems that bringing the LHA rate back in line with the old HB is both sensible in terms of reducing the overall bill but in terms of removing an artificial prop to the rental market so allowing rents to fall. This will affect some landlords who have profitted from the over-generous payments however most of the sector does not rent to benefit claimants. It seems that many landlords let at sub-LHA rates anyway.
    I do not think that we will see a large increase in homelessness but rather that landlord and tenant will just adjust to a new lower set of payments in line with the rest of the sector. The LHA payments are just too generous.
    I disagree with GO over the suspension of payments after a certain time as a stick to get people back to work. I cannot see how linking your home to your employment or lack of it will help you get a job. One of the biggest issues preventing the return to work is the loss of housing benefit. We need to follow up IDS’s work on making work a profitable exercise. Carrot rather than stick.

  19. Housing construction ( or lack of it ) will be key IMO in deciding whether we have a double-dip recession, or whether boosting construction of new homes will instead be used to drive growth.

    Following the demise of Connaught, another Social housing contractor John Laing Partnership Ltd has just gone into administration. Lack of new orders is a major factor.

    h ttp://www.insidehousing.co.uk/news/finance/social-housing-firm-enters-administration/6511914.article

  20. That was no ramble Eoin, it was a well defined excursion!

    I keep returning to this site because I find reading other people’s posts has led me to think hard about my personal/political philosophy rather than “I think that cos that’s what I’ve always thought”.

    Here’s my thought for the day:

    I had a pretty typical up-bringing in a stable, loving home where my parents did their best for us kids. Now retired, I’m not wealthy, but I ain’t broke either. I have a serious medical condition but also family and friends who love and support me.

    As a red, I feel I’ve been lucky that fate has dealt me a reasonable hand. I have compassion for those who got lousy cards, be it rotten parents, bad education an impoverished home life etc.

    Whereas I feel blues have a sense of entitlement and feel they deserve what ever good things have come their way. They differentiate between the deserving and undeserving have-nots.

    I think “there but for fortune go you or I”

    Maybe I’m wrong.

  21. @Eoin – I just don’t get your point re corporation tax in Ireland. What we now see is that compettive devaluation of corporation tax rates doesn’t build a stable economy – undertaxing is as sinful and damaging to your long term economic stability as overtaxing, as the Irish people now find out.

    Quite why you also assert that Scotland would automatically benefit from low corporation tax is also beyond me. As there is a net transfer of government assets currently from England to Scotland, an independent Scotland’s first job would either be to raise tax or cut spending, with no guarantee that a sustained low level of corporation tax would be viable.

  22. Of course, there are certain things, or people, we can’t seem to bring ourselves to be open minded about…..

  23. @Cozmo

    Connaught may blame the cuts for their demise but IMHO the root cause was a fatally flawed business model and poor management. They embarked on a acquisition trail paying over the odds for other companies. Their assets included a lot of goodwill which is no use when things go wrong. Their borrowings were all too real. There were also question marks over the accounts. Simply they over-extended themselves.

    Companies in this field do not need new orders as they should have a steady income stream. The problem starts when the new orders are needed to fund the pyramid. Much of Connaught has already been taken over by competitors so they value that steady income stream. They are probably not having to pay up for the goodwill.

  24. Valerie – I’m here for the same reason as you.

    Fed up with knee jerk reactions and a biased press I decided to get to know (even in cyberspace, lol) some intelligent blues for myself in an attempt to better understand their points of view.

    I have given as much credit as I can, where it has been due (foreign policy, IDS and David Laws spring to mind) and as you say, am struggling to think of a single post in support of reds from a blue.

    Tell a lie, Hooded Man and Matt are very fair.

  25. Are there any ‘Red’ supporters or sympathisers who are confused, even disconcerted about LORD Kinnock’s ‘We’ve got our Party back’ statement?

    Colleagues in school have asked;
    1. Back from Whom? (A three time winning PM?)
    2. Is this the same Kinnock who lost in 1992 when he should have won? (Rally and shadow budget etc)
    3. Is this the same Kinnock who campaigned against the last Old Labour Government, as an MP against the Devolution Bill, voting in the Lobbies with the Tories/Whigs, and in the 1978 Referendum which brought Callaghan down?
    4. When he talks about the Party, does he mean the PLP and the CLP’s who voted for David (Abel)?
    (He of course did a great job after 1983, but never lived down the goose green speech and the obscene gesture to the media on the beach)

  26. @VALERIE
    What a strange thing. This business of “entitlement”.
    We can only state our own case, I for example have a built in feeling that no able bodied adult is entitled to anything they have not worked for, especially me. I always have the impression that Labour supporters feel everybody is entitled to everything irrespective of what it costs the state to provide it. When I say “adults” it is because I am an absolute soft touch regarding children. My personal reaction to the abuse of children or animals is very right wing.

  27. Aleksander – I agree. Taylor Wimpey have never really recovered from the last slump either and imo are very vulnerable should there be a double dip.

    Bought land too high, leveraged too far.

  28. Alec,

    It really is very very simple. In an under developed pre-industrial agriculutral economy. It simply does not exist…. bar butter, bacon and milk ROI was a non entity. oops I forgot the black stuff.

    To get a underdeveloped feeder economy to attract inward investment you need to provide an incentive. In NI we used to give incentive grants a bit like the automobile industry did under Mandleson… at DTI (or whatever its called these days)..

    We found that the £370mill investment grants to Courtaulds, ICI, De Lorean and other companies fell flat on its face. Bombarier Shorts H&W all pulled out/or collasped in NI- leaving us the saddest basket case in the white world.

    In the ROI they have a lower corp. tax… Multinationals wanting to establish a European base pick the ROI over Scotland or NI because of its preferential rates…

    Google/ Intel/ Xerox are but three examples… There are many more. they employmany people especially in rural areas outside Dublin….. Thus, while the north relies of Poultry factories and abotoires the south has low-medium skilled manufacturing and software related jobs. the number one reason for this is the 10% corp.

    Poor Scotland and poor NI.

  29. Chris Lane.

    Even at conference we felt it was time for Neil K to get back in whatever box he came out from.

    Nice guy but a very odd image to present of the “New Generation”

    Your points are good ones, imo.

  30. Eoin
    Others including Alec will explain why this doesn’t seem comprehensible from a progressive point of view . My point is that regardless of the rights and wrongs the days of this strategy are over. It is a simple matter of maths. For a while the flea bites don’t hurt enough for the bigger animals to worry. Then they become a pest and that is the point we have now reached. Why does the rest of the euro zone to go no further want Ireland to have an unfair (as they will see it) advantage?
    Ireland (or Iceland) can cock a snoot until hey need help. Then?
    It is now I think policy for the green and moderate right groups in the E parliament to prevent this tax arbitraging but more importantly it is Merkel’s view

  31. Sue Marsh,
    Thank you!
    I thought I might be alone in thinking that Neil K has many qualities but he was ‘ottp’ on this slogan (as he has been before of course)

  32. Barney,

    If you get a chance you should check out UK Labour Party afiliations in NI’s attitudes to equalisation of an all-Ireland corp tax…

    The SDLP who take the red whip support it for example.

    I wont rehash the arguments for or against since I think you already understand my position. For the record, i am categorically oposed to a corporation tax cut in England or south wales.

  33. @Aleksanadar
    I did not actually say what Connaught’s excuse was but I agree that they had many failings, including the ones you outline. IMO too many organisations have mad easy money out of social housing for decades, and this is as much the fault of Labour as it was Conservatives.

    It is not confined to the construction industry though; there are countless companies providing consultancy and training, countless conferences to churn over the same old ground without actually improving anything. Same goes for housing regulators and Ombudsmen IMHO.

    But none of this changes the fact that the coalition have turned the funding tap off are unlikely to solve the social housing shortage by building new homes to replace the millions sold off so expect more companies to go bust. Labour must bear their share of the blame.

  34. ALEKSANDAR – sorry for typo

  35. Chris – There was a noticeable sense that union delegates and “lefties” were happy – as a pathetic smoker, I get to speak to a good mix outside the hall!!! (By far my most interesting moments have been on a ciggie break!! lol)

    That said, I was aware that these same delegates had been at conference year in and year out through Blair and beyond and there had not been so much as a peep from them.

    Their optimism may yet turn out to be misplaced, but I found it hard to begrudge them :)

  36. re. Neil Kinnock.
    It’s simple. He was obviously referring to getting the party back from the Blairites, right-wingers whatever you want to call them.
    This is telling. Neil Kinnock was never particularly on the left of the party. He was responsible for modernising the party, he expelled Militant Tendency from the party. His comment is testament to how far the party had moved to the right in the last 13 years.
    As for losing in 1992. It’s a bit of a myth that the Sheffield rally was the reason he lost. The Tories were clever (and ruthless) enough to have replaced an unpopular Prime Minister with one more acceptable to the public. The public were scared of a return to Labour, a fear fuelled by a really really hostile press.
    I emigrated a few weeks after Major’s win. I couldn’t stand another 4/5 years of the same policies.
    I was still abroad 5 years later and watched TB’s win on BBC World.
    I’m the only person I know who has actually emigrated because they didn’t like the results of an election. ;)

  37. Alec

    “As there is a net transfer of government assets currently from England to Scotland,”

    Now you just said that to wind me up. :-)

    You know perfectly well that the transfer of assets is from that strange creation of “Ex-Regio” – to both England and Scotland.

    Of course, including our share of Ex-Regio isn’t quite enough to cover all expenditure in Scotland. In 2008-9 our fiscal deficit was £3.8 bn (2.6% of GDP). Since Scotland doesn’t have borrowing powers (unlike NI), the UK has to borrow that on our behalf. Technically, I suppose that you could say that was a transfer from England to Scotland – but only because the Exchequer is geographically in England.

    Just what was the fiscal deficit in England in 2008-9? You don’t know, and nor does anyone else, because it isn’t calculated. However, go look up the UK’s deficit in 2008-9. Only if it is less than 2.6% of GDP can your assertion be justified. If it’s greater than that – oops! the transfer must be the other way round.

  38. Core-periphery economics and the World Systems Theory are crucial to the understanding of the detrimental position of the celtic fringe economies.. the two most reccomended texts are

    Immanuel wallerstein’s World System Theory
    Michael Hechter’s Internal Colonialism the Celtic fringe.

    my interests in these texts arose out of gender issues. I was sturgglin to understand why women were largely confined to the domestic economy and unwaged labour… these theories help explain why women are on the periphery of the periphery… but they are still very useful for the consideration of corp tax in the Celtic Fringe.

  39. @Robert C
    “There are more splits within Labour and the Tories than within the Lib Dems”

    On one level I think you are right, All parties are coalitions of views. However there is a far greater propensity, IMO, for Lib Dems to peel off and join one of the 2 major parties. If we had PR this may not be the case but as that is unlikely for the forseeable future the most likely political split in the offing is for Left-Wing Libb Dems to join Labour under Milliband’s leadership.

    @Chris Lane
    As a Labour supporter I think that a further period of silence from Lord Kinnock would be much appreciated. EM would be wise to give hima wide berth, he is a vote-loser and I would doubt that many people in the Labour party wants to be reminded of 1992 and the Sheffield rally !

  40. Sue, I’ve only just popped on briefly before heading out for dinner so can’t stay long, but just saw your comment – bless your heart. There are plenty of us that try to see both sides….as I know you do.

    I hope there’s not been a ruck earlier? :-)

  41. Aleksander

    Thanks for making all that clear about the Local Housing Allowance. Another classic case of the law of unintended consequences. I believe there were two other problems with it as well (please correct me if I’ve got it wrong). The first was that the areas were too large; meaning that some types of property in some parts of an area became unaffordable, while, in other parts of the same area, rents were being boosted above market value as you described.

    There was also, I think, a problem about rent being paid directly to the tenant rather than the landlord, with inevitable results where some less responsible (though often vulnerable) tenants were concerned. As a result landlords became less willing to take on HB tenants or priced in a bad debt margin, and this also made for upward pressure on rents.

    Hopefully an effective return to the old system won’t cause much in the way of homelessness, but it’s always a lot harder to get the genie back in the bottle than to let it out. If you lessen the money supply to a market it may stop altogether, rather than slow down, particularly when demand is greater than supply, as it is, in most areas, with housing. I’m also curious as to how a rent limit at the 30 percentile will work in areas where over 30% are on some form of benefits.

    Like you I hope IDS can produce reforms to make getting into work more attractive, though I have my doubts about him getting the coordinated support his reforms need from elsewhere in government. I wonder if the problems with the LHA prefigure a lot of the ideologically driven alterations we may see in future; where belief that things can be made “simpler” and can incorporate elements of the “market”, actually mean that you end up with something more complicated and expensive.

  42. @Julian Gilbert, popping out soon, but on Neil Kinncok,
    I agree that he did wonderful work 1983-1992, but his flaws allowed the opposition and their media allies to exploit them, and that is a reason why Labour voted for TB to be leader on July 21 1994. (one of our children born that day!)
    Neverthless getting the Party back to that phase now will not return the red/pinks to power

    And Neil’s pre 1980 phase was very much on the far left, though he then began to move, so thus did not vote for Benn in the deputy leadership vote, earning a disgusting rebuke from Margaret Beckett, not able to be repeated here, I think.

    Kinnock did help to wreck ‘Our Party in 1978-79

  43. Julian,

    Xcellent post. I’m impressed. Kinnock bashing is in vogue but it was never for me.

  44. @Chris

    “Are there any ‘Red’ supporters or sympathisers who are confused, even disconcerted about LORD Kinnock’s ‘We’ve got our Party back’ statement?”

    Jon Cruddas was very good on this on C4 news: decried the whole idea and defined it as a notion that only people of what he termed as “the liberal metropolitan elite” could ever be innately attracted to. A notion- if accompanied by policy rather than merely at present hot air rhetoric- that will only end in electoral disaster.

    Of course he is absolutely correct on that.

    JC has done more than any MP to fight against the BNP and to stand up for “ordinary working class voters” and their priorities, interests and needs.

    More often than not in opposition to aforementioned metropolitan liberals – represented on here by a few posters ;-)


    On BBC strike: good to see EdM today criticising the Unions and suggesting that they be sensible/ not giving them any support in their proposed action next week :-)

  45. I don’t think anyone’s “Kinnock bashing”!!!

    Just pointing out that it’s rarely a good idea for a leader from 16 years ago to be prominent in a leadership campaign.

    Many a Blue must have had their heads in their hands every time Thatcher piped up during poor old Major’s time.

  46. It’s very sad, but I feel Theresa May needs to take some responsibility for this. I heve felt for a few months that she may not be up to the job and, regardless of party politics, I shall be very very sad if another woman Home Secretary falls by the wayside.

    “Mr Boatman’s business partner, Kevin Coles, told BBC News that Mr Boatman had been found dead.

    A spokesman for Northamptonshire Police said officers were called to an address in Kingsthorpe just before 1310 BST where the body of a 57-year-old man was found.

    The spokesman added: “We are not treating the death as suspicious and will be preparing a report for the coroner.

    Mr Coles said he was “devastated” at the news.

    ‘Destroyed him’

    He added that Mr Boatman was a “proud man” who had worked hard to protect the police and had felt “ashamed” at the recent developments.

    Mr Coles said the Home Office ban and the subsequent coverage had “destroyed” his colleague.

    Pro-Tect was accused of supplying a new Taser weapon to Northumbria Police during the Raoul Moat manhunt in breach of Home Office rules because the Taser had not been fully tested.

    Mr Coles said Mr Boatman had only wanted to help police officers who were caught up in the hunt for Moat.

    Last week Home Secretary Theresa May said Pro-Tect had only been permitted to supply the X12 Tasers to its scientific development branch testing.”

    The Dr David Kelly tragedy is an analogous incident if one believes that he felt he had been terribly let dow n by the government.

  47. @ Rob Sheffield

    “Damn those bankers, dealers, traders and investment ‘managers’ who created the worst depression for almost a century leading to collapsing tax revenues and increased public spending to save their skins and that of the entire global economic system.”

    Absolutely-I mean I can see why a good left of centre man like you would think that allowing these people to charge UK government interest on loans to it is a positive disgrace.

    Actually the largest holders of UK gilts are Insurance Companies & Pension funds-& we know why they want an income from those Gilts-to pay pensions to the upper classes. I mean you have opened up a hornet’s nest here Rob.

    Next up is overseas buyers-holding around 30% of UK government debt. I mean-wealthy arabs-what can you expect?-but the China Soverign Wealth Fund!-I ask you-they were communist ten minutes ago-now they’ve got 60 dollar billionaires. How did that happen-Mao would turn in his grave-charging interest to ordinary british working people-just cause they lent us money to pay for housing benefit. I don’y know what the world id coming to.

    Next up-as you rightly say-Banks-holding around 25% of UK Gilts. I mean we own most of them-why don’t we tell them we aint paying any interest to them.

    In fact now that ED has moved “the centre” a bit , so Cameron isn’t standing on it any more, I hope he redefines more of this stuff- Gilts could be called Charitable Donations for example-or Mandatory Contribution to the Workers Fund.

    ….and what about QE I mean the Bank of England “bought” £200BN of UK Gilts-and its owned by the Treasury!!!!!!!!!!-so we pay interest to ourselves!-neat eh-lets do QE for the whole shebang & reduce our UK Debt servicing costa to Zero at a stroke.

    It just needs some original thinking. I feel sure ED is on to this.

    Foreigners & Banks & upper class retired gits are bleeding this country dry.

    It has to stop.

  48. just want to post on here for the first time,its nice to see some good and honest political discussion,something i cant get when im at work. ive been reading posts on this site for months,i dont get much access to a computer so i will still be limited on here,its just nice to see all the converstaions and arguments everyone makes. Something this lad cant do whilst working for a car manufacturer. keep the debates going people it makes good reading for this lad from the black and white end of brian clough way(google it!) regards the baron.

  49. And where did ICM come in the league of polling companies at the last GE?
    7th, 8th, 9th?

  50. Colin – :lol:

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