Posts Tagged ‘Elwyn Watkins’

Monday News Review

10/01/2011, 06:25:39 AM

Leaders clash over youth jobs

David Cameron has betrayed a generation of young people by denying them help to get a job, Labour leader EdMiliband will say today. The Prime Minister has summoned businesses chiefs to talks today on boosting employment. But Mr Miliband accused the him of ignoring the problem of youth joblessness, which is at its highest level for a quarter of a century. In March the Tory-led Government will end the Future Jobs Fund, which provides 100,000 places for under 25s, but the “work programme” which replaces it will not start until June. Speaking at a press conference in London, Mr Miliband will warn that Mr Cameron is repeating Margaret Thatcher’s mistakes, which led to the creation of a “lost generation” in the 1980s. Mr Miliband will say: “The first thing Mr Cameron should be addressing at his meeting today is the risk of a lost generation of young people in this country. “There will be a looming gap in the help given to unemployed young people. “This decision to betray young people is not just unfair it is the wrong long-term economic judgement.” – The Mirror

The key political battleground of employment will flare up today as David Cameron meets 20 leading multinational companies which have pledged to create jobs in Britain, and Labour mounts a campaign attacking the Coalition on youth unemployment. Ed Miliband is warning that thousands of young people face a “looming gap” when they look for help to find work because of the Coalition’s plans to scrap the Future Jobs Fund.But Mr Cameron counters that 300,000 private-sector jobs have been created in the past six months and he has plans to unveil more job pledges today. He hopes that by enlisting the support of large companies, such as McDonald’s, Shell and Toyota, the Government will appear pro-active in delivering jobs. The Prime Minister also gave warning yesterday that trade unions that strike over public-sector job cuts would find they would not be able to “push anyone around”. Speaking on the BBC, he said the Government was ready to talk about the impact of cuts but would not be forced into changing tack. “Striking is not going to achieve anything and the trade unions need to know they are not going to be able to push anyone around by holding this strike or that strike or even a whole lot of strikes together – they can forget it,” he said. – The Independent

Johnson jibes

Alan Johnson has been dogged by claims that he is not knowledgeable enough to be an effective opponent to George Osborne in times of economic hardship.His latest slip was seized upon by both Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats as an example of his lightweight ability. Mr Johnson appeared on Sky News on Sunday to criticise the Coalition Government’s announcement that VAT will rise to 20 per cent, a move he described as “fiscal fundamentalism”. Labour wants to increase national insurance as a way of tackling the deficit. Accused of being an economic “novice”, Mr Johnson said: “The accusation of economic novice is that when you take over a new job, you have to ensure that you bone up on these things.” A few seconds later, presenter Dermot Murnaghan asked the shadow minister to give the current rate of employers’ national insurance contributions. Mr Johnson tried to avoid the question before he said it would increase by one per cent, rising from 20 per cent to 21 per cent. Mr Murnaghan interrupted, to say: “Sorry, National Insurance, employers’ secondary class one-rate for employers, stands at the moment at …?” There was an awkward pause where Mr Johnson appeared unable to answer before the presenter came to his rescue, telling him the figure of 12.8 per cent. Mr Murnaghan went on: “Right, OK, I helped you out there. Just out of interest, there is still a lot to learn for you in terms of the job.” – The Telegraph (more…)

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Elwyn Watkins would have unsuccessfully lobbied himself on tuition fees

06/01/2011, 11:44:36 AM

Last night the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg interviewed Elwyn Watkins, the Lib Dem candidate in Oldham East and Saddleworth. He gave lots of silly answers but the following section stood out – highlighting the ridiculousness of the broader Lib Dem position:

LK: At the time though during the general election when you came within a whisker you were standing just as a Liberal democrat. You were against tuition fees, you were against big cuts in this financial year. Now you would be an MP as part of a coalition that’s gone against many things that the Lib Dems are campaigning for in the general election. How are people on the doorstep here meant to believe what you’d say to them this time?

EW: …In a coalition you have to compromise and most people I’ve talked  to say given the financial mess that we’ve got ourselves to try and deal with it’s about time parties co-operated and they looked to try and  get things done on behalf of the country rather than for party political advantage.

LK: But on something like tuition fees for example, on the doorstep here in the general election you would have been saying that you’d vote against any rise in them. How would you have voted if you were in Westminster then?

EW: Well I would have fulfilled the coalition agreement, but my view of tuition fees hasn’t changed, I still think they’re wrong and if I was an MP I’d still campaign against them. But when you’re in a partnership with another party sometimes you get what you want, sometimes they get what they want.

So, if Elwyn Watkins had become an MP in May he would have voted for tuition fees – BUT – campaigned against them. What? What do you mean Elwyn?

How can you campaign one way but vote another? How would he have campaigned against himself? Picketing his own office? Shouting at himself? Sending himself furious letters? Distributing leaflets saying “Do not vote for Elwyn Watkins – only the Lib Dems can win here”?

And all the while having to do all this campaigning without trying too hard, in case he convinced himself, and ended up not voting the way he intended.

The Lib Dems are past masters at double-think and double-talk. Recently they added a massive double-cross. But this raises to the level of madness their already vertiginous bar of duplicity and deceit.

It all probably sounded jolly clever when Cowley St gave Elwyn his lines, but hearing it back surely even he must realise that it is rubbish. What a fool.

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