Monday, April 07, 2008

Where's Livingstone?

Local Conservative campaigners in Wallington have been asking ‘Where is Ken Livingstone?’ As the contest for the next Mayor of London draws closer, people in Sutton have been campaigning to highlight Ken Livingstone’s neglect of London’s outer borough of Sutton.

Steve O’Connell, Conservative candidate for the London Assembly said:
“The current Mayor of London has been running an administration for zone 1, not for the rest of us who live in Greater London. We need a Mayor who will represent all Londoners and Boris Johnson has already demonstrated his commitment to doing this by visiting Sutton High Street and Cheam Village.

We are fed up with Ken Livingstone’s out of touch approach to running London. After eight years as Mayor all he seems to be interested in is preserving his job and looking after his cronies.

It is time for a change. Boris Johnson is campaigning on the issues that matter to the people of Sutton and offering fresh solutions on issues like Crime, Transport and back-garden development. We want to see a Mayor who cares about Sutton and is committed to working for all those who live in Greater London. Boris has clearly demonstrated he is the man for the job.

52 comments:

cllr david pickles said...

Good point. It seems Livingstone's commitment to Sutton goes as far as poking up ridiculous signs proclaiming us a "Low Emission Zone".

RFK said...

It is sad that Ken Livingstone has been so invisible to us here in the outer London Boroughs. I really do think that Boris is the right man for the job!

Boris has taken the time to come and visit us here; Ken takes the time to ensure we have the highest possible Council Tax and the least to show for it. I just hope people are sensible with second preferences, it would be a disaster if Ken got back in that way.

Paul: How does this second preference stuff actually work?

shemi cheam said...

ken livingstone does nothing for the people round here in cheam, sutton and carshalton and wallington,,boris johnson is a fresh breath of air.
we dont trust ken livingstone with getting crime down & keeping the freedom pass,no way will he get our vote

councilor scully your right, boris is the man for the job of mayor of London.

shemi
cheam

Anonymous said...

Good question: where the hell is Livingstone?

He sure ain't in Sutton!

Bring on Boris!

michael said...

I had doubts about Boris Johnson at first because I thought, given his character, that he wouldn't take the contest seriously. He has defied my expectations, I'm happy to say.

Mr Johnson has shown himself to be a serious candidate to remove Red Ken and offer a raft of policies t change London for the better, rather than the narrow-minded student politics of the hard-left Mr Livingstone.

I will vote for Boris to eject Ken Livingstone. We need a Mayor who cares about Zone 5 as much as he does Zone 1.

sean ludlow-harris said...

Michael @ 8 April 09:59: GMT

I agree with your assessment of the Blond Bombshell Boris Johnson. He did look and sound a bit of a clown at first but when you look into his background he shows up to be an extremely capable character with a first class intellectual ability.

I personally think it is about time we had a real thinker at the helm of London's governance rather than a prattling and arrogant Neo-marxist hell-belt on doing whatever he pleases.

I can remember what a nightmare Ken was on the old GLC, do people have such short memories now they keep on electing him as Mayor?!

Michael you are also right when you say Ken is a Zone 1 Mayor with little regard for Sutton and the surrounding areas. I saw Boris Johnson in Carshalton on Monday and even shook his hand, I have NEVER even heard of Ken Livingstone coming to Sutton borough.

Cllr David Pickles said...

It's interesting this evening though the announcement that ALL 3 major parties mayoral candidates - yes that includes "Blond Bombshell Boris" (for those who seem to swoon at actually "shaking his hand", particularly backed by the "Conservatives" have agreed an amnesty for illegal immigrants.

What a disgusting betrayal of Londonders, and how dare the Tories repeat their hollow boast about "controlling immigration"

Fact remains that all three parties are the same. There isn't a fag paper you could put between them. They are only in it for the power and the money.

RFK said...

Typical UKIP scaremongering I see!

If anyone wants the FACTS about this story, here is the BBC link:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7338950.stm

The article states: 'long-term illegal immigrants should be able to work for two years, subject to criminal checks, an English test and other requirements... London Citizens - made up of 2,500 community leaders, faith groups and other organisations - says "earned regularisation" has been a success in the US, Spain and elsewhere and should be implemented in the UK.'

It is also worth noting that there is no mention of this policy being taken up as Conservative Party policy anyway. David Cameron has called Boris 'his own man'.

I'm glad to see that Boris has taken on board these comments and is trying to represent the majority of Londoners already.

Cllr David Pickles said...

Yes rfk - that's gutless Cameron's cop-out. Calling Boris "his own man", means that the spectacular Johnson can dabble in buffoonery, agree to anything for a vote, and Cameron can say "not me guv".

Typical Tory gutless wet. Let's hope your next door neighbour rents his house out to a dozen romanion gypsies rfk - see how you like it then.

RFK said...

I am saddened by your response Cllr Pickles. What exactly is your point?

I don't care where the people who live next door to me are from. They could be from Mars as far as I care. Are you suggesting in you comment that you do care about such things? I have three immigrant grandparents, all of whom came to this country and contributed.

Cllr David Pickles said...

"What exactly is your point" My point is this. For a good number of years, the people of this country have been told that "immigration is of benefit". In some circumstances it is, so I would agree with that. Now, however, we have got to the stage where (a) we are full up as a country, (b) our basic services are under severe pressure, and (c) economically it was proved last week that immigrants actually are worth a net 58p per week each to the economy. Your party interestingly is now pandering to the lobby that likes to point the finger at people like me and UKIP and accuse us of "racism" which is crass and ignorant. If you bothered (I presume you canvass on behalf of Sutton Tories) to speak to people on the doorsteps about this disgraceful state of affairs you would see that the vast majority are completely against any more immigration. Funny how UKIP have been the only party to call for a freeze, and yet when it suits you and your lot in Sutton you agree with it and then you disagree with it. Remember the reasons for my defection to UKIP? Strangely enough Cameron echoed my words not 3 months after, and yet I'm still waiting for Cllr Scully to publicly apologise for calling me "inflammatory" for my remarks.

Fact remains you and the Tories (and the other 2 main parties) want to have your cake and eat it. I say again - if you had a housefull of romanian gypsies next door to you you would not like it, and you might begin to appreciate just what some people in this city of ours have to put up with. I was born in the east end of London and have seen how my former area has been completely and utterly ruined by mass and uncontrolled immigration, but I wouldn't expect you to understand that as you probably live somewhere rather leafy and very quiet.

hand of history said...

If Ken does show his face in Sutton, please would someone give me some warning, so I can go and buy something smelly to throw at him?

Anonymous said...

Socialist Worker
dated 12 April 2008 | issue 2096


» email article | » comment on article | » printable version

Posted: 7.57pm Tuesday 8 April 2008

News

This article should be read after: » How Brown makes the poor pay more tax

Brown's tax changes hit the poorest the hardest
by Simon Basketter

Gordon Brown has declared war on many of his own voters by abolishing the 10p starting rate of tax.

While some of the poorest workers in Britain are now forced to pay hundreds of pounds more in tax, in the London boardrooms of the world's richest companies there was joy as corporation tax was slashed.

This is Labour's third cut to the tax on profits since 1997. Under Margaret Thatcher's Tory government, corporation tax was 52 percent. This week Brown reduced it from 30 percent to 28 percent – the lowest of the G7 leading industrialised countries.

New Labour's double standards make a mockery of its claim to be "lifting people out of poverty" and has sent a wave of anger among Labour supporters, even those who think of themselves as loyal to the party.

Millions of Labour voters rightly believe that the tax system should be used to help the poorest by redistributing wealth from the rich to the poor.

They think that those at the bottom end of the income scale should be paying a lower rate of tax, while those at the top should be paying the highest. This week's changes reveal that Brown's government is determined to do the opposite.

The abolition of the starting rate will hit young workers without families particularly hard. Those earning less than £18,500 a year stand to lose up to £232 a year – a lot of money when you are scrimping to put food on the table while paying the rent.

But it is not just the young and single who will be out of pocket. Around 1.2 million double income couples with no children and 700,000 double income couples with children will also be paying more. As will 300,000 women aged between 60 and 64.

Brown's startled response to the political furore over tax has been to claim that his regime of tax credits and child tax credits will make up for the shortfall. But he knows this is a lie.

Lack of information and a cumbersome application process means that only 40 percent of those entitled to tax credits claim them – dropping to just a quarter of single people on low incomes. Those under 25 without children are not even eligible.

Those who do manage to obtain tax credits often find that they become caught in a trap where any extra money they earn can be wiped out by taxes.

The Treasury's own figures show that 1.9 million people – including about half of all pensioners – whose income exceeds £6,500 a year are allowed to keep just less than 40p of every extra £1 they earn.

When the total of all deductions, including national insurance, are taken into account those people are paying rates of tax on extra earnings of between 60 and 90 percent.

This week's tax changes will mean a million more people are caught in this trap. The number affected is equivalent to more than the population of Birmingham and Manchester combined.

However Gordon Brown's world is full of stark contrasts. Multi-millionaire Labour donor Lord Sainsbury showed how New Labour is working for the rich. Last week he transferred most of his 8 percent stake in the Sainsbury's supermarket to a company he controls, in the process avoiding a £27 million tax bill.

Yet even Brown's new 28 percent corporation tax is too much for some top firms to bear. The top 50 companies in Britain have an average effective corporation tax of just 22 percent.

Already those at the bottom end of the economic scale are struggling as they pay a bigger proportion of their wages on essentials such as food and fuel, which have shot up in price.

By limiting pay rises for public sector workers to below inflation the government is making the pain far worse, creating a seething political anger.

Last week the Experian credit agency revealed that 5.1 million households are close to not being able to pay all their bills, including mortgages. Three out of four of those are in Labour constituencies. That's around eight million voters.

No wonder that even the government's junior ministers last week made "dangerous murmurings" about the abolition of the 10p rate of tax and the need for fairness.

However the "rebellion" was short-lived and government whips brought MPs back into line without offering the slightest concession.

The cold reality that most Labour MPs understand is this – loyalty to Labour means loyalty to Brown, and in turn loyalty to Brown means loyalty to the rich.

The following should be read alongside this article:
» How Brown makes the poor pay more tax


» email article | » comment on article | » printable version

© Copyright Socialist Worker (unless otherwise stated). You may republish if you include an active link to the original and leave this notice in place.

Scullduggery Watch said...

What are Councillor Scully's opinions on this amnesty for illegal immigrants?

Most of us will be aware of his criticism of Councillor Pickles a year ago, only for Scully to duck and run for cover when David Cameron echoed Pickles' sentiments virtually word for word a few months later.

So does Councillor Scully agree with Boris Johnson's reneging on David Davis' commitment to track every failed asylum seeker until they leave the country?

Please don't hide beneath the parapet this time. Let us for once see a decisive commitment from the Sutton Tory leader in the form of a firm stance on the immigration issue.

Tim Crowley said...

Hi David
It is not a policy which would sit well with me but it is an answer based on pragmatism.
If the resource spent trying to find these people in London outweighs the amount of tax we might glean from an amnesty and also tax going forward then it has some merit.
I dont know how many we are even talking about here but there must be quite a lot that can be flushed out.
It doesnt necessarily sit well with me but it is an answer to a problem.

michael said...

Apart from the off-putting point-scoring above, immigration is a big issue in London and the amount of illegal immigrants who exist under the radar is a big problem.

We know the Labour Government simply hasn't got a clue how many people are here so finding them, and extracting them is inpractical if not impossible.

As Mr Crowley above suggests, why not ensure that these migrants are paying tax for the benefits of living in Britain like everyone else?

I have no faith in Mr Livingstone's attitude towards immigration and poorly thought-out multiculturalism which divides communities - even less in the wishy-washy liberal candidate Mr Paddick. Practical solutions appeal to me and we need a good starting point to controlling immigration and this won't happen under a Labour or Lib Dem politician, in my view.

Anonymous said...

so bottom line is ukip and councilor david pickles dont like immigrants, particularly gypsies. what a nice man

Cllr David Pickles said...

Nonsense anonymous. Pity you haven't the guts to reveal your real name, but that's typical of the likes of you.

Scullduggery Watch said...

No reply from Councillor Scully. No surprise there then.

"If we ignore 'The Watchman' he might disappear and save us ending up in the local press once again!"

Obvious point scoring, Michael? So a relevant question should be avoided because it might be used as capital by your political enemies?

I have to take issue with this "Pickles is a racist" nonsense. I always thought that the Shanklin Estate had quite a diverse ethnic population and that the UKIP Councillor served those local residents well regardless of their race, religion or colour.

I did hear of a Nigerian woman who thanked him personally after he took a strong stance on unregulated mass immigration. You really think she would have done so if Pickles was goose-stepping around Sutton wearing a black shirt and replaying Kristalnact?

This kind of Tory smear campaign against their UKIP rival does remind us of Tony BLiar accusing the Conservatives and William Hague of racism back in 2001 for raising the same concerns over this country leaving the flood gates open.

How times change. Why are the Sutton Conservatives mimicking the tactics of Tony BLiar by placing such slurs on a decent Councillor?

RFK said...

As many people have stated above, illegal immigration is a problem, particularly as so many people are under the radar. Offering an amnesty would bring many people out of hiding to be processed by the system. I always thought this meant people had to meet certain criteria as I mentioned in an earliar post. I must admit, it is not an issue I dwell on, and I certainly don't agree with Cllr Pickles' view that a total freeze is needed (which is odd as he states in the same reply that he agrees immigration is a benefit in certain areas).

To be honest, I am more concerned with how the Mayor tackles issues of crime, transport and the environment. Immigration policy will not be decided by the Mayor for any party. I would suggest that those trying to make this thread into an immigration rant should probably drop a line to David Cameron's office and let the man himself give you his opinion.

Scullduggery - I can't see anywhere in this thread that anyone called David Pickles that. Odd how you seem to know very specific details of David Pickles' past, such as a person approaching him with a compliment.

Scullduggery Watch said...

Anonymous said...
"so bottom line is ukip and councilor david pickles dont like immigrants, particularly gypsies. what a nice man"

Anonymous went about as close as you can get to outright calling Councillor Pickles a racist, RFK.

The Office of Mayor has an enormous platform to place pressure on those shaping Government policy. If it didn't affect such decision making do you really think that the big three candidates would bother using their airtime to offer their opinions on such an issue?

I am interested that you claim to be interested in how the Mayor tackles issues such as crime when an amnesty for illegals could prove problematic in this regard.

This is a massive issue for London as the vast majority of those illegal immigrants would be concentrated in city centres where the communities are more diverse, hence this would have a large effect on London as a whole.

As you have said, certain people might or might not meet certain criteria. This is a scary prospect when you consider that a proportion of these illegal immigrants could pose security threats similar to that of a repeat 7/7 bombing. Shouldn't they be arrested and sent for trial or deported rather than given amnesty?

Would an amnesty send the wrong signals to future would-be illegals who might also be tempted to try their luck in the hope that the amnesty be repeated or extended?

Rather than telephone David Cameron I was interested in hearing Paul Scully's opinion in this regard as this is his blog and he is supposed to be the leader of the Sutton Conservative group. I am sure he does not require you to act as his mouthpiece either.

I would also disagree with the UKIP stance on a blanket ban on immigration for five years. I would instead like to see the country only take as many migrants as we need and only then if they possess the skills required by this country. I would not like to see Britain miss out for five whole years on highly qualified international applicants just because of a short sighted ban. It would be a tragedy if our loss became another country's gain.

Who was turning this thread into an immigration only debate? Surely it is as important as any other issue which affects the security, prosperity and identity of this once great nation.

p.s. You will be aware that I am still have affiliations with the political scene in Sutton. The story of the Nigerian lady speaking to Pickles filtered back to me through the grape vine, it was no great secret (unlike Scully helping to get Eleanor Pinfold chucked out of the Conservative party).

Why is Scully still so mute on this subject anyway? Has my return caused him to hide away in 48 Benhill Avenue and baton down the hatches?

michael said...

Well, who really cares, usual nonsense taking this thread off-topic, so back to topic...where is Ken Livingstone?

I have never even heard of Red Ken visiting Sutton. Not even once to my knowledge although I must confess I did vote for him in 2000.

Do we even know the last time he did deign to visit the borough? More importantly does he even know Sutton exists?!

sean ludlow-harris said...

Michael @ 11 April 2008 08:42:00

The present Mayor doesn't give a toss about Sutton, Cheam, Wallington, Beddington or Worcester Park. I have voted for Livingstone (Let's call him that rather than Ken as it likes 'Ken') but in the 2000 election as an independent mayor I can see why people might have been tempted.

Personally I like politicians who are indepedently minded and speak their mind on issues, and whether you like Livingstone's Neo-Marxist claptrap or not he does speak his mind! Got to give him that.

I was delighted to meet Boris Johnson on Monday, shake his hand and wish luck, and I don't what any one thinks. I think Mr Johnson is a breath of fresh air and the best thing for London.

I want a free thinker and an intellectual running the city I love, rather than a despot-wannabe like Mr Newt himself. I see no qualities to bring about the needed change in any of the other candidates including the drugs-limp Lib Dem Mr Paddick and the dictorial Ms Sian Berry (sp).

Scullduggery Watch said...

Off-topic? Would you care to borrow someone's glasses, Michael? The post was very much on-topic. You continue shielding Scully from answering questions though, he will be most grateful.

Why are the Sutton Consetvatives ducking legitimate questions yet again? Is rational debate only the preserve of the Conservative party? Not that there is much evidence of any kind of intelligent rationale judging by Michael's response.

"Consult, Consider, Ignore" Indeed.

The Conservative candidate does not possess a divine right to be mayor. Boris Johnson and the Conservatives must be prepared to offer their ideas for improving the world's greatest city just as Red Ken needs bringing to order over his contempt for the outer London Boroughs.

The big three candidate's campaign for illegal immigrants to be granted amnesty falls under the mayoral mandate. So there are questions on immigration to be answered in this regard. Boris Johnson clearly feels that it is the right thing to do or maybe he feels there is political capital to be made from backing such an amnesty. Do we not have the right to question the question the wiseness of such a decision?

Red Ken's only significant contribution (or deduction) to the Sutton Borough has been the money he loots from it's taxpayers for his London precept/Olympic games; the additional charges we face for driving into stupidly placed bus lanes; and the wonderful £600,000 bus stop he sanctioned to be built behind the shopping centre.

Where is Ken is one question, another question is where is Councillor Scully? We still have not heard his views on the subject of the amnesty for illegal immigrants.

Cllr David Pickles said...

Sean Ludlow-Harris

"Personally I like politicians who are independent minded and speak their mind on issues" FANTASTIC!

I expect now that you have become a great fan of mine, and look forward to you joining UKIP in the near future............or do you want it both ways?

michael said...

Sean, you're right Berry and Paddick are two peas in the same limp pod. Even potentially worse than Ken if that were possible!!!

Scullduggery Watch said...

Scully appears to be too afraid to give his opinions on his own blog.

Just the trait the Sutton Conservatives need in a leader, right when the London elections are almost upon us.

What does Scully think about the amnesty for illegal immigrants?

Or is he only prepared to make sanitised statements when he is allowed to pick and choose the questions and the persons asking them? How very Tony BLiar of him.

Perhaps Scully fears events which he cannot control, particularly when he is unable to suppress bad news like Eleanor's removal from the party. Come along Councillor Scully, step out from the comfort zone and tell what your views are. You cannot fear repeated bouts of negative publicity in the local press forever!

Cllr Barry Russell said...

“Where is Mayor Livingstone?”

Some years ago I was chatting with the head teacher of a local school of which I am a governor. I suddenly saw a recent photo of the Mayor with some of the children and staff. On enquiring I was told that he turned up, barely announced, with a hoard of photographers, did not seem too interested in anything other than having his photograph taken with lots of smiling children. Apparently it rather back fired as many of the children appeared quite frightened by him and bust into tears at the experience (out of the mouth of babes etc…..).

I hope that Scully enjoyed a superb family break, took in the culture and returns invigorated for the fight ahead. The 1st May looms and change is a great possibility for Londoners. I genuinely do not meet anyone who has a good word to say about Livingstone. Supporters of Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat often attack each other, but all seem unified in their desire to get rid of the current Mayor. Even the lesser parties seem to understand this. Yet he still polls reasonably well, how many votes do the likes of Hugo Chavez and former members of the PLO control?!!

sean ludlow-harris said...

cllr barry russell @ 12 April 2008 10:30:00 GMT

There seems to be a huge consensus to remove Mr Livingstone, I'm no expert but it is surprising how low key his own party has been in the media in his campaign. If I were a Labour supporter I would not be confident in my candidate for the mayoral office.

As I've said his socialist hard edged agenda is unsuitable for London and especially outer London areas like our borough. He seems more concerned with cosying up to foreign despots than helping our area. I see no leadership from the Liberal democrat candidate or from the Green party. I have no faith in their ability to tackle London's issues. Most of all crime.

How long ago was that story of Mr Newt and the baby, Councillor Russell?

Having had reservations about Mr Johnson at first I think he is the man for the job now. He's got the brains and he seems to have the support, I wish him luck, we need the change in London.

Cllr David Pickles said...

Scullduggery Watch - it appears from Cllr Russell's post above that Cllr Scully has been enjoying a family break, which is probably the reason you have not had a reply from him. Hopefully now he has returned you will garner a response from him.

shemi cheam said...

why do they call ken mr newt?

shemi
cheam

Anonymous said...

apparently he collects and breeds them. the fact he is practically reptilian himself is pure coincidence.

(I'm aware that newts are amphibian)

Scully said...

Back from abroad, and there's been plenty of discussion I see. As so often, descending into a bunfight.

Anyway the amnesty question. The Mayor for London does not set immigration policy for their party any more than I do, therefore whilst giving interesting background information to the candidates there is no reason why it should affect how you vote in this election.

I don't agree with Boris that immigrants that have been here for ten years should be allowed an amnesty, though in all reality many will have established significant links in this period and have children. Although this massively complicates the decision and removal process, an amnesty papers over the cracks of a failing policy. We have already seen a number of amnesties over the past decade; only significant reform to policy and procedures will avoid the temptation to offer another.

In his comments, Boris raised some powerful arguments that need addressing in another form. The Formula Grant that comes from central government to provide by far the largest proportion of the Local Authority's spending is based on the local population figure. We can be sure that this continues to be underestimated as the UK Border Agency still cannot keep up with the numbers entering the country and those applying for leave to remain. I have some sympathy for those immigrants who wish to work. Because the system can so often keep immigrants in limbo for many years, they are only able to claim state handouts even if they have skills which may be of use. Again, I would prefer to see the system improved to process an application within weeks, thus negating the need to consider whether to allow an applicant to work. However, this cannot be acheived by waving a magic wand and so will not be acheived overnight.

I do not subscribe to the simplistic point that an amnesty will encourage others to come to this country on the off chance that there will be another one. People come to this country for any number of reasons but such a highly speculative reason will be low down the list. That is not to say that we should not be proactive in encouraging the view in other countries that we are firm but fair in our approach. Trouble is, we need the reform to have a firm but fair approach first rather than the scattergun process that we have now.

Now Vigilanza di Scullduggery, I'm sorry to disappoint you by telling you that pandering to your prejudices wasn't foremost in my mind over the last few days. The Italian elections and the Roma defeat by Manchester United knocked your utterances of top spot on RAI Uno. Nonetheless, I am sure that in order to be consistent with your requests of me, an apology will be forthcoming for the accusations of avoiding the issue through cowardice.

(RFK, the voting system for the election including second preferences will be a subject for a future post over the next few days if you can bear with me.)

RFK said...

Cllr Scully, an excellent response which I think should now close this immigration debate. I'll look forward to finding out what all this second preference stuff is about. It's probably obvious, but my second choice certainly wont be Livingstone!

Scullduggery Watch said...

Dear Obersturmfuhrer Von Scully

Apology? You are an elected Councillor and Conservative leader with global access to the internet via your Blackberry, it was not my fault you were asleep at the wheel.

It wouldn't have been the first time you would have cowered with your tail between your legs, akin to the dog on the VW advert. You adopted a very similar stance by deleting my newsworthy posts on Eleanor being chucked out of the Conservative party.

Of course the mayoral election does have a bearing on the shaping of future Government policy! If it were not so then not a single one of the big three candidates would have offered such vocal public support for such a policy, they would have stuck with telling us what their favourite colours were and what they usually eat for breakfast in the morning.

"I do not subscribe to the simplistic point that an amnesty will encourage others to come to this country on the off chance that there will be another one."-Scully

Well, it can hardly be interpreted as a deterrent can it? It seems like for all of the tough talk and the promises by our MPs to create a 'Fortress Britain' that our public representatives are in fact in full retreat. Instead they opt to raise the portcullis and lower the drawbridge. Why wouldn't an amnesty encourage those pondering illegal entry to take their chances for a few years with a view to one day being offered indefinite leave to stay?

It is funny though, Scully. For all of your criticism of Pickles' "inflammatory" comments a year ago it actually seems like you agree with much of his own stance on immigration! You also mentioned my "prejudices". Well which prejudices would they they be then, Paul?

ok then Von Scully, I will make you a once in a lifetime deal: You apologise profusely for your campaign to usurp Eleanor Pinfold and for helping to get her chucked out of the Conservative party and I will in turn retract my labeling of you as a coward. Fair deal?

Scullduggery Watch said...

(p.s. Wasn't Benito "El Duce" Mussolini an "ometto" sort of chap as well? What a perfect destination for a holiday...)

Scully said...

Ometto may well be a small Italian egg-based dish. Omerta is the Mafia code of silence. The Mafia are mainly based in Sicily and the South of Italy. I did see 'Il Duce' Mussolini's villa, now a museum on the Palatine Hill.

My Blackberry may allow me to keep in touch but isn't there to respond to pointed demands from you. I take it that you have no family. You appear to have spent too many long hours alone at night in front of this blog to appreciate that taking a family holiday is just that; holidaying with the family.

Anyway back to something approaching meaningful. the Mayor can be an effective voice for London but cannot formulate policy for the country. All three main candidates for the Mayoralty support an amnesty including the present incumbent. Ken Livingstone believes in all sorts of weird and wonderful things, none of which have been taken up by his party's government. The majority of the campaign has been spent talking about crime, transport and housing. These are the areas that the Mayor has direct responsibility for. Immigration is an important issue as I have said repeatedly. This is especially true in London. Personally I agree with a firm approach to immigration. Where I disagree with some of the posts on this blog is where the line is between calling for a firm stance and using intemperate language that panders to people's prejudices. I'm just waiting for the 'I'm not a racist but...' line to appear from somebody.

Scullduggery Watch said...

I take it that will be a defiant "No" to the apology deal then, Paul? Whoever said that 'cheats never prosper' obviously had never met the hierarchy of the Sutton Tories!

When you affirm that Livingstone has all sorts of barmy ideas that his party's Government have not taken up are you insinuating that their handling of the immigration crisis has been commendable?

Overstretched immigration officers are too busy deporting foreign criminals to deal with bogus refugees. There is a vast backlog of deportations- estimated at half a million. Deportations of failed asylum seekers are falling by 28% year-on-year. Even the Shadow Home Secretary David Davis said: "This chaos is a shocking indictment of the confusion and paralysis at the heart of this Government".

So is it fair to assume that Boris Johnson is attempting to help the Government to clear this backlog by handing out British passports willy-nilly?

The problem with the current Conservative mayoral candidate is that he is in cahoots with the incumbent mayor on one of those weird and wonderful Red Ken crusades. This support for 'King Newt' might be helpful to Boris' chances of becoming Mayor but it will not be beneficial to London's already over-loaded infrastructure. It is therefore of great concern that Boris has essentially decided to dice with the quality of Londoner's lives in this way.

"...using intemperate language that panders to people's prejudices." Well who used such language then? Rather than insinuate perhaps you should have the courage of your convictions to say who you feel is making such openly rabid remarks. Which comments did you find so very offensive and which blogger made them?

Perhaps you would have had more time with your relatives if you didn't spend time whiling away the hours monitoring, censoring and deleting legitimate posts, Councillor Scully.

Be careful of playing the "family man" card, Paul. You slaughtered the UKIP Councillor for being a responsible father, remember?

Scullduggery Watch said...

Note Scully's Mafia references:

"Omerta is the Mafia code of silence"

Scully knows all about this clandestine policy as it has now been adopted by the Sutton Conservative Mafia to great effect. A useful code when one wants to off the incumbent Shadow Leader and take her place.

(p.s. Was the crony-subsidised foreign jaunt an enjoyable trip? I always thought that it was only the Italian Mob that kicked up points so the Don could enjoy lavish holidays in "the boot"!)

Scott Nugent said...

I havent been watching the mayor for London race too closely but from what i have gathered it is an interesting contest. i didn't vote in the last election because i didn't see the point, but i will vote tory this time. my 2nd preference is undecided. it might go to one of the independents, not sure.

My top issue personaly is crime but Immigration is one of my top issues as a Londoner and Sutton resident. i'm not sure i agree with the amnesty idea for illegal immigrants but it has got to better than the do nothing approach of the moment. as earlier comments have suggested there might be an advantage to getting illegals out of the shadows and into the mainstream, let them earn citizenship and pay towards to inferstructure burden they bring. that has got to be better than the do nothing approach. OR the Labour party approach which has caused the problems in the first place.

Not totally happy with an amnesty but not happy with the status quo as well.if i pay taxes for the NHS, police, defence etc so hsould they.

Scotty

scott said...

ps. Looks like someone doesn't like you on this blog Paul, lol, keep up the good work got them rattled i think!! ;)
Scotty

Scullduggery Watch said...

Pffffffffffffft!
Dear Scott
I hear of everything that goes on within the Sutton Conservative leadership and I know for a fact it is the other way round...

RFK said...

Scott - Spot on, keep up the great work Paul. There are malicious, false allegations emanating from one belligerent individual, but everyone else knows and appreciates the excellent work that you do.

Keep it up :)

michael said...

As a relative political novice who only learned of this blog site and of the contentious nature of Sutton's local politics by the Cheam by-election I must agree with rfk's assessment. Mr Scully and his Conservative colleagues seem to be doing an excellent job in highlighting the shortcomings of this local council. Having read this week's local newspaper, the Sutton Guardian, I see Tory councillors have exposed the ridiculously expensive laptop scheme.

I now see the Conservatives in a better light. I've always voted Tory instinctively but now I have a reason to vote for them locally.

In the past local Conservatives and the two previous MPs gave the impression of being useless. The local organisation seems to have stoppped repeating a failed past and are now giving local people a real alternative. I cannot recall there being such a vibrant sense of opposition to the costly and out of touch Lib Dem status quo, and at a broader London level a real sense of change for City Hall with the Mayor.

The Conservative Party, at all levels, is finally getting its act together by offering real opposition and a real alternative by dragging itself into the 20th century. If you incur the wrath of luddites then that is a greater indication you're doing the right thing and fighting the good fight.

I echo the sentiment above: Keep it up Councillor Scully and colleagues, please get Boris Johnson elected and Ken turfed out! I'll do my bit and vote for him, make sure you do yours!

RFK said...

Michael - a very articulate and accurate response, which I fully concur with.

Although slightly (and I mean slightly) off topic, does anyone think that the poll published today reflecting a massive drop in support for Brown will impact on the London elections? He is Labour's top man afterall, but is Livingstone considered his 'own man' enough to avoid being caught up in the turmoil of the Government? Mind you, he probably has enough trouble surrounding him anyway!

michael said...

I think Red Ken is distant enough from the Brown government not to be tarnished with it, rfk. Ken is almost a party unto himself in that way.

People will go to the polling booth to vote for Ken Livingstone rather than for Labour. I think it will make little impact all in all but maybe it is possible the impact may go the other way round if you see what I mean. Labour could be damaged by Livingstone's poor performance.

Cllr David Pickles said...

Just to let all you doubters know.......I, as the sole UKIP representative have totally ignored the council's offer of "free" laptops, blackberry's etc. and will NOT be accepting them, just as I am pleased that the Tories won't be. On this I am in full agreement with Cllr Scully and his group.

Scullduggery Watch said...

"There are malicious, false allegations emanating from one belligerent individual"

Could RFK be referring to Councillor Scully? He must be, for I seem to recall that MY facts (deleted four times in great haste by a certain miscreant from this blog) were actually researched and vindicated by the Sutton Guardian reporter when she telephoned the Conservative Head Office for confirmation! Do keep up your brown-nosing endeavors though, RFK...

"The Conservative Party, at all levels, is finally getting its act together by offering real opposition and a real alternative by dragging itself into the 20th century"

I am not so sure that Boris Johnson advocating the amnesty for illegal immigrants can be seen as this party's finest hour, Michael. There are enormous consequences for such an ill-thought out gesture to the Guardianistas and left-of-centre voters. Should this incompetent Government be pressured into taking up such a policy then there could be dire consequences for the capital's prosperity, security and quality of life. I do hope that the rest of the Conservatives will email Boris and demand that he withdraw his support for Red Ken's latest folly.

Or do the rest of the Conservatives worry more about their poll-ratings and electabilty instead of fighting for the same beliefs that got them actively involved in politics in the first place?

sean ludlow-harris said...

Scullduggery Watch @ 14 April 2008 02:40:00 GMT

"There are enormous consequences for such an ill-thought out gesture to the Guardianistas and left-of-centre voters."

Undoutedly, poorly thought immigration has caused considerable pressures to the UK and our inner cities in particular. But what are the "enormous consequences" that you are, I must admit, quite vaguely referring to if a focused amnesty was to be given?

Such a scheme hasn't been tried before and the second most significant impact of immigration is the burden it places on our services. Why should the host population pay for the services which illegal immigrants inevitably use?

Considering it is highly inpractical, prohibitively costly, and unfeasible to locate and extract the considerable number of illegal immigrants in the country - why not drive them out of the shadows and make them earn their right to live here through work, paying their dues and assimilation into our culture?

I was not comfortable with it personally, but the more I think about it the more sensible it sounds.

Besides it is not an endorsed policy from the Tory party. It shows us that Boris Johnson, as I have commented before, is a free-thinker, intelligent and articulate with an independent mind. These are qualities I want in a London Mayor not one of Stalin's Bootboys.

Scullduggery Watch said...

Dear Sean

I am one politico who believes that immigration is a very positive thing IF it is handled in the correct fashion.

I will copy and paste a quote that I made a few posts above this one:

"I would instead like to see the country only take as many migrants as we need and only then if they possess the skills required by this country. I would not like to see Britain miss out for five whole years on highly qualified international applicants just because of a short sighted ban. It would be a tragedy if our loss became another country's gain."

An amnesty is not the safe way to deal with the enormous deportation backlog the Home Office currently faces.

We already have hundreds of home grown and imported religious fundamentalists on British soil, so much so that both the USA and France are justifiably furious with us for harbouring those that could and should be locked up or deported as soon as possible. The USA has even considered tightening up it's entry restrictions for those traveling in from the UK because of the terrorist threat so many of our citizens possess.

How many illegal immigrants are there residing in Britain at present? Half a million? A million? Maybe more? Who are they? Do they have criminal records? Are any of them potential terrorist threats?

These are all unanswered questions which would ensure that this ill-thought out gesture quickly turns into a nightmare should it ever be implemented. Boris & Co. have acted in a most irresponsible fashion by proposing such a move.

British culture has already been diluted or destroyed in so very many communities. Those wishing to reside here, whilst remaining proud of their own cultural heritage and ancestry, must be prepared to fully integrate and assimilate into British society (having applied through the official channels in the first instance).

I too would like to see local politicians in power who are intelligent and articulate...but I am afraid that there is little evidence of free-thinking amongst 'Scully's Boot Boys'. Any 'thought crimes' are punishable by public vilification and/or your being dispatched from the Conservative party forthwith!

sean ludlow-harris said...

scullduggery watch @ 15 April 2008 04:33:00 GMT

I think we need to focus on what Boris Johnson actually proposed. Mr Johnson he suggested that a reprieve should be granted to those who overstay their visa or to those asylum-seekers whose claims have been rejected but are unable to return to countries. Zimbabwe would be an example of this.

He also states that they should have been in the country for four or more years. In response to your point I'm certain Mr Johnson would not endorse a clumsy blanket amnesty, which could allow terrorists or extremists to settle in Britain. Although I imagine Livingstone would considering he poses with anti-Semites, homophobes and intolerant bigots.

Do we not risk pandering to the racists by making an automatic link between immigrants and fundamentalist extremism? The July 7th bombers were second generation Britons after all. The British National Party must be licking their lips with delight when normally sensible and responsible people make that link.

I’m not a politico of your calibre, clearly, I just call it how I see it. I’ve lived in the borough for a few years and this is the first time I’ve noticed a real shift in the local government. There simply ain't been an alternative to the status quo. But now the reigning Liberal Democrat Party appears to be on the run from the Tories, who appear articulate, effective and fresh. There's now a choice. There wasn't previously.

That’s how I see it. I want these Libdems with their failed ultra-liberal high tax agenda out and the neo-Marxist Livingstone out of city hall. You’ve got your own personal or political agenda, that’s obvious but I’m fed up with paying this much tax and seeing naff-all in return. And I’ll vote accordingly.

Scullduggery Watch said...

"If an immigrant has been here for a long time and there is no realistic prospect of returning them, then I do think that person's condition should be regularised so that they can pay taxes and join the rest of society."
-Boris Johnson

Now whilst on the surface this might seem like a fantastic idea we would be extremely naive to implement such a blanket scheme.

Whilst the majority of legitimate immigrants and those born and bred here will of course be jusifiably proud of their links to the UK we must vere on the side of caution when it comes to deciding who is allowed to reside here for evermore.

Sean, you are indeed correct in your assertion that most of those responsible for 7/7 were indeed home-grown terrorists. So as we already possess such a fanatical and unscrupplous enemy in our midst is this really the time to offer an amnesty to a small but significant number of foreign nationals who might also wish to do us harm?

There are a minority of illegal immigrants who possess a security threat to this nation. Their number might only be in the hundreds rather than thousands. However, to legitimise the existence of such people and not arrest/bring to justice/deport such persons as soon as possible could prove to be damaging to the health, wealth and prosperity of so many of our nation's citizens. Preparation rather than aftermath would of course be more desirable.

How many of the aforementioned illegal over-stayers are in possession of criminal records in their native countries? Are these legitimate convictions? Do they possess a threat to our communities therefore? These are all very good questions that nobody really seems to know the answer to. Could you move to any other western nation and be allowed indefinite leave to remain without a full and frank disclosure about one's status, qualifications, convictions, etc?

Statistics show that 8 out of 10 asylum seekers are bogus applicants. There are a tremendous number therefore who have no right to reside in this country but have squirreled themselves away in the diverse communities of our major cities and beyond.

To allow those to remain who had no legitimate reason to reside here does send the wrong message to other would-be illegals contemplating the same move.

There is also the old UN law about asylum seekers needing to declare their diplomatic status at the first "safe" nation's border that they reach. Of course, in practice this seldom happens and we have more than our quota of illegal foreign nationals entering within the UK.

Surely the vast majority of those half a million illegals who have been earmarked for deportation by the Home Office would not have had their cases rejected unless they had a country to return to?

I must also reiterate that opening the floodgates only serves to damage the cultural fabric of this nation and overloads our already failing infrastructure.

I do feel however that there have been a number of incorrect asylum judgments made by the Home Office which amount to little more than outrageous miscarriages of justice. Take for example the poor gay teenager who faces the hangman's noose if he is deported to his home country of Iran, yet bizarrely he sees his asylum application rejected. I found this to be a disgusting move by the Home Office, tantamount to the Labour Government handing him a fresh death sentence.

I would prefer to see the entire asylum system overhauled and made much more humane and efficient. Those who should not be here should be removed without delay by a stronger, more high profile border and immigration force. Those who have no choice but to plead for asylum like the chap in the aforementioned case should be offered safety and sanctuary as soon as is humanly possible.

I would also like to see us compete for the world's creme-de-la-creme of highly qualified immigrants whilst sharing the numbers of unqualified asylum seekers with other "safe" nations around the world.

Surely these are more sensible options in comparison to Boris' desire to close the stable door after the asylum horses have bolted?