Tory government’s ridiculous claim that it’s a ‘world leader’ on climate is proven wrong, again

The UK government loves to describe itself as a ‘world leader’ on tackling the climate and biodiversity crises. Its actions, however, rarely live up to its rhetoric. A new report from the Woodland Trust is a case in point, as lays bare the dire state of the UK’s trees and woods. One of the worst in Europe The Woodland Trust’s report is called State of the UK’s Woods and Trees. As the title suggests, it’s a comprehensive assessment of the scale, condition and life-supporting capacity of the country’s woods and trees. It focuses primarily on native woods and trees because those are of the highest value in terms…

0 Comments

Boris Johnson faces battle with Tory rebels and Labour over ‘vaccine passports’

Boris Johnson faces a battle over plans to introduce “vaccine passports” for people to demonstrate their Covid-19 status before going to events. A government review into “Covid status certification” found they could “potentially play a role” in settings such as theatres, nightclubs and mass events, and might also be used in pubs and restaurants to reduce social distancing restrictions. The potential use of certificates – which would include vaccination status, test results or evidence of someone having contracted and recovered from Covid-19 – is opposed by at least 40 Conservative MPs and Labour is also sceptical about the measure. The row over vaccine passports came as the government’s…

0 Comments

Tory government refuses to give details of its renewed NHS contract with this ‘Big Brother’ firm

The Johnson-led government is refusing to publish further details of an NHS contract with a US firm. This firm has been embroiled in controversies relating to intelligence gathering for several years. More transparency needed Palantir was co-founded by billionaire Peter Thiel. Thiel is a board member and major investor of Facebook and was a member of Donald Trump’s transition team. In the UK, Palantir has been awarded a £23m extension of its NHS datastore contract, but this was scrutinised by openDemocracy. This resulted in the government reportedly agreeing “not to extend Palantir’s contract beyond COVID without consulting the public”. openDemocracy also said that the government agreed “to engage…

0 Comments

Former UKIP and Tory personnel are trying to abolish the Welsh Assembly

BBC Wales has confirmed that the anti-independence group Abolish The Welsh Assembly (AWA) will speak at the leaders’ debate on 29 April 2021. The group has received backlash online after its members participated in a smear campaign against the Welsh Assembly. The announcement comes after the political party was struck off the electoral register in November 2020 after its registration lapsed. Then it successfully re-registered ahead of May’s election. And that’s not all. It’s also run by former UKIP and Tory personnel. “One Policy. Abolish The Welsh Assembly”. The political party claims on its social media profile that it has just one policy: to abolish the Welsh Assembly. In…

0 Comments

A Tory minister on Marr just insulted the whole of Scotland

A Tory minister’s assertion about the current state of the “union” was a low moment. This was even by the Andrew Marr Show‘s usual standards. Because he managed to insult the intelligence of every person living in Scotland. Dowden slips on Marr The ‘united’ bit of the United Kingdom has been hitting the headlines again. Former Scottish first minister Alex Salmond has started his own pro-independence party. In Wales, Plaid Cymru has been pushing Welsh independence. And in recent months in the north of Ireland, polls have shown a majority support for a vote on reunification. So, enter culture secretary Oliver Dowden on Marr to lay waste to…

0 Comments

Tory minister’s remarks on new UK oil drilling plan may be the dumbest thing ever uttered by this government

It’s difficult to think of anything more dumb than planning to find new sources of dirty oil and gas when the planet is ecologically collapsing because of dirty oil and gas. That is unless your name is Kwasi Kwarteng. And the Tory business and energy secretary’s associated remarks have outstripped even that proposal itself in sheer absurdity. A message to the world… As scientists warned that the climate crisis could mean regular wildlfires blazing across Britain in the not-too-distant future, the government made an upbeat announcement. In what can only be described as the policy equivalent of dancing on its own citizens’ future graves, ministers cheerily explained that…

0 Comments

Tory council candidate condemned after tweeting ‘just bomb Bristol’

A Conservative candidate for Eastbourne council had to apologise after tweeting ‘”just bomb Bristol” in response to the weekend’s protests. Stephen Halbhuber was widely criticised for his response to the videos of police in Bristol clashing with the demonstrators as they protested the government’s policing bill: Hi prospective @Conservatives councillor @SHalbhuber you appear to have deleted your tweet about bombing Bristol. It's OK we've got the screenshot for you. You're welcome. Good luck in the election 👍 pic.twitter.com/5ZZ2OF2HBf — JR (@JRodge888) March 22, 2021 Immediate backlash Several Twitter users asked the Conservatives whether Halbhuber was the sort of person they wanted representing them. Halbhuber is running for the…

0 Comments

Tory hypocrisy forgets that Scottish independence doesn’t hinge on ‘any one politician’

The Canary‘s #Independence2021 series explores issues relevant to independence in Scotland and Wales in the run up to May’s elections. This edition looks at the potential effect that a report into the “handling of allegations of sexual misconduct against Alex Salmond”, during his time as Scotland’s first minister, could have on independence in Scotland. Unionists are seizing on this to discredit Scotland’s first minister and leader of the SNP Nicola Sturgeon. And as a result, they’re also trying to attack the Scottish independence movement. But regardless of the attacks, the report’s findings may not affect Scottish independence at all. Because, as Derek Macpherson of Scotland’s Action for Independence…

0 Comments

Minister backs Tory mayoral candidate accused of politicising Sarah Everard case

A government minister has backed the Conservative London mayoral candidate after he was accused of politicising the disappearance of Sarah Everard. “Fear” Business minister Paul Scully said Shaun Bailey can “absolutely” still run for office despite facing criticism for comments around the case of the missing 33-year-old. The mayoral candidate had said his wife and daughter “have to live in fear” in the capital but vowed to work to “deliver for the safety of women and girls” if he wins May’s contest. As a father and husband it breaks me to think that my wife and daughter have to live in fear in their own city. It doesn’t…

0 Comments

Marr just witnessed a car crash. It was a Tory minister on NHS pay.

The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday 7 March saw a Tory minister crash and burn. But education secretary Gavin Williamson wasn’t talking about schools when it happened. He was defending the Tories’ appalling 1% pay rise for nurses. An insult? BBC News reported that: In November [2020], the government announced that public-sector workers would have their pay frozen in 2021-22. The exception was for those on salaries under £24,000 and NHS staff… On Thursday [4 March], the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) gave its evidence to the NHS pay-review body. And, as BBC News said, the DHSC opted for: a 1% pay rise across the board…

0 Comments