The Government’s new Satellite program will send only one thing Skyrocketing: Costs. – opinion

Soyuz-2 - Wikipedia
Written by Harry Johnson for the Telegraph

Regardless of how you feel about the government’s ideology, it is becoming clear that very little research is done when they put their policies into action. The most recent example of this, ‘Britconnect’. As soon as the starting gun had fired on this new initiative, the Government was wading from problem to problem. First. the Secretary of State for Business made the reckless claim that the Government would seek to nationalise OneWeb, integrating it into the United Kingdom’s Space Agency (UKSA), only to wind this commitment back, buying half of the company instead. Yet semantics and economic mistruths before Parliament are only half of the problem with Britconnect as, under the veneer of this fully automated luxury (space?) communism being offered by the government, there are real geopolitical and even technological hurdles that the government has so far failed to even acknowledge.

To begin with, is the issue of how we get these satellites into orbit. The Prime Minister has confirmed that there will be no funding for the launches to be carried out in the UK, implying that OneWeb (perhaps soon to be renamed as UKSA-web?) will be carrying on with its current launch regimen of launching its satellites using Russian Soyuz 2 rockets from sites on Russian territory. Perhaps this would not be that big of an issue if these were commercial satellites launched by a private entity, but the government themselves have confirmed that these satellites will effectively become the digital backbone of modern Britain and, more alarmingly the government also envisions these satellites being utilised for military purposes with the satellites being touted to have Public Regulated Service (PRS) capabilities akin to those of the Galileo network. In short, these satellites are supposed to be the single most important national security and foreign policy asset in the British arsenal, and yet the government seems all too comfortable outsourcing its launches to the Putin regime. and its allies.

Delivery aside, is it even possible to turn a swarm of small Low Orbit satellites into the veritable swiss army knife of Satellites? 

The government is claiming that it is, but the experts seem to disagree. Even if all the fancy scientific systems were to be dropped from Britconnect and the government wished to have dual-use internet and navigation systems it is still going to be near impossible to do it. As Inside GNSS points out, navigation and internet satellites operate not only in different parts of the atmosphere, but also operate on different frequencies. They also lack the space to contain multiple atomic clocks, which are integral to having an accurate navigation system. This arguably kills the idea of turning the OneWeb constellation into a viable and independent GPS system as we would have to rebuild the British navigation infrastructure from scratch, something no Government or private entity is likely to do when working alternatives already exist. 

This question perhaps pales into insignificance compared to the question of how you are going to fit a large array of other scientific, internet, and potentially military systems into a single hull. Moreover, how would you meet the power demands of such a large satellite when the Arrow satellite was designed with a much smaller and less power-hungry array of systems in mind? The Prime Minister has claimed that it is possible with minor adjustments and that UKSAC will devise a white paper to that effect, so it may be too early to pass judgment on this, yet on the surface, it seems to be about as plausible as the £60K  plastic homes policy the Government churned out last week – another ill-conceived, and under-researched Government program. Even if they could do it, one has to wonder how much would such a sophisticated assortment of satellites cost the taxpayer?

The Starlink and Galileo project cost close to £10 billion each over multiple years, reaching over twenty times the purported cost of Britconnect, which again is supposed to do far more than either of those systems was ever supposed to do and is set to launch in less than a year.  Starlink and  Galileo used purpose-built satellites to achieve their capabilities, whereas  Britconnect is supposed to be composed of retrofitted internet satellites requiring potentially billions more in unspecified R&D costs and fundamental changes in our current infrastructure. Perhaps then it would be more cost-effective to just launch a dedicated navigation network using proven and available technology and leave satellite internet networks to companies like SpaceX, which already can provide us with the same capability without forcing the taxpayer to dole out on a white elephant of a government project.

All in all, this program is not fully costed – and the one thing that will surely be skyrocketing is the cost to the taxpayer, not the latest satellite network,

BritConnect – Will it make it off the launch pad? [Op-Ed]

The Secretary of State for Business and Economic Development has announced plans for BritConnect. If it happens it will represent a sweeping investment into both our nation’s telecom’s infrastructure and the nation’s space agency in order to blast satellites into orbit and propel our connectivity into the future. All of this through 648 satellites launched to orbit our planet, at great cost to the British taxpayer.

Through the lens of the government’s nationalisation campaign this endeavour represents a potential financial blackhole for the British public, certain to exceed estimated costs of £500 million.

Typical weather satellite can cost in the region of £209 million, a typical military grade satellite can cost another £100 million on top of that. The UK Military’s current Skynet 6 R&D programme is estimated to be on £6 billion. The concealed Zircon satellite project, secretly developed by GCHQ specifically for signals intelligence in the 1980’s was estimated to cost £500 million before it was cancelled, equivalent to £1.5 billion in 2019. The European Space Agency estimates the baseline total cost for a three-unit nano-satellite mission starts at £500 000. Reflect on those sums, and then look towards the £500 million being invested by the UK Government for 648 satellites. Remember that rocket fuel and space flight make for excellent television, but often sketchy investment for your money – space is the high risk, high reward, anything can happen table. If the government is refusing to seek input from the private sector, where will it source the inevitable shortfall to get this telecom’s infrastructure into orbit? Are the government’s plans financially credible, or are they a work of science fiction?

BritConnects next challenge will be retaining an established and skilled workforce of telecom’s engineers and our own version of the rocket scientist as those highly skilled, highly paid roles look towards foreign opportunities with nationalisation on the horizon.

The Department for Business and Economic Developments concludes there is real potential for the UK to export BritConnect in competition with the established Huawei – sponsored by the Chinese government – to recoup the costs, and reestablish our global position. It is true that China has employed that company to expand it’s interests and influence across the globe.

Huawei itself is a company with serious security concerns for western democracies, but that has weathered much sanction pressure, and still today is renowned for being competitive across the telecom’s market. It has made major leaps. The Chinese government has consistently indicated that it has no affiliation with Huawei, but it is evident that a partnership between that government and the telecom’s giant exists at an undisclosed level. The British government hopes it can provide a viable alternative without the innovation, enterprise and financial nuance of the private sector. Yet China itself doesn’t identify Huawei as a state instrument, but as a private sector company. This can’t even be an argument for the success of state controlled business. To compete with China, and to market BritConnect well it will need the private sector.

The blackhole in the finances is only dwarfed by the risk to democracy itself.

With wider security concerns about national infrastructure and Huawei, there has never been more scrutiny in the western world about telecommunications infrastructure. Whilst the Secretary of State has made much about what BritConnect’s impact ultimately might be on the world as a non-authoritarian alternative, locking the private sector out of this vital industry opens up the potential for abuse. Private sector involvement is an essential characteristic of freedom of speech. If this was the media industry, we would have grave concerns that the government was clawing into the essential infrastructure by which it functions with no private sector involvement. Not only is BritConnect unaffordable without private sector involvement, it’s undemocratic without accountability beyond government.

The prospects of a state owned, state operated, and state accountable BritConnect means that we step closer to models adopted by Russia and China than those employed by our allies in North America and Europe. Russia and China are known for censoring the thoughts of their own people, and employing their telecom’s infrastructure as a tool to that end. Is it potentially naive of the government to believe that Britconnect does not have the potential to be misused by future governments of varying political views?

The Secretary of State has already emphasised that state security apparatus will have greater capabilities thanks to BritConnect, and the pillar he leans upon in advocating the policy is one of trust. To trust his government to provide non-restricted, non-monitored access to the internet. One wonders how much the Russians and Chinese employed the ‘trust us’ argument when they launched their state owned, state operated, and state accountable telecom’s networks. Did they too – as our Secretary of State has emphasised with loss of signals intelligence capabilities after leaving Europe – also lean on issues of security and defence to implement a state controlled network?

I am not suggesting the government should step back and have no involvement in the future development of the nation’s telecom’s infrastructure, but it cannot be the sole participant of the enterprise. The private sector is a necessary partner to ensure this is both affordable and effective.

This latest policy direction by the government invites the question – Will the Secretary of States proposed BritConnect make it off the launch pad?

The Chancellor’s Collective Cabinet Irresponsibility – oped

Sir Lindsay Hoyle elected as House of Commons Speaker | Financial Times

Written by Harry Johnson

Collective Responsibility, while practically a requirement for a functioning government as evidenced by how disastrous its lack has been for the Rose and Phoenix governments can be suspended if need be. That was the case with the Check-ups bill, which was a PMB that the shadow cabinet that according to insider sources specifically decided to have a free vote on. 

The original purpose of CCR in its earliest days was to prevent the cabinet from being subverted by the Monarch through disagreements and internal spats being made public. In the modern-day, the point of CCR is to maintain the appearance of a unified cabinet The principle that members of the (shadow) cabinet must publicly support all decisions made by the  (shadow) Cabinet. Members of the LPUK shadow cabinet were elected on the same platform and as is evidenced by  Libertarian Shadow Ministers acting in line with the platform adhering to that very principle.

That’s why /u/dominion_of_canada was right to point that there is no CCR in the shadow cabinet in this context because it was resolved that the bill was a free vote and thus outside of the scope of any form of collective responsibility. The shadow cabinet operating within the confines of the constitutional convention had a free vote in line with existing precedents on the issue when Micheal Howard allowed members of the Opposition to vote freely on the Civil Partnership bill when shadowing the Blair Ministry

More examples of collective responsibility being suspended  include the 1975 EEC referendum with former Cabinet Secretary Sir John Hunt pointing out in his testimony that 

‘‘I would not regard the 1975 EEC referendum] as breaching collective responsibility because this was a decision by the Cabinet as a whole to waive collective responsibility on one particular issue for a limited time. It was not a decision which any Minister took unilaterally …’”

John Hunt

This is seemingly what sets Solidarity’s CCR scandal apart from the Opposition setting a free vote on the bill. In the case of Welfare devolution, the Chancellor and the embattled Agriculture Secretary both dissented from the Prime Minister’s and the government’s position seemingly unilaterally. In the case of Shadow Cabinet, the decision was left to individual MPs to vote with their conscience.

The National government’s agreement to differ on the issue of Tariffs in 1932 is yet another example when the cabinet opted to allow Ministers to dissent on tariff policy from the official line. Setting a new precedent in constitutional theory that operates to this day. It is sad to see the Chancellor and indeed a large part of the political commentariat not being aware of this historical precedent and the changes it brought to how we view the concept of CCR. For a government that prides itself on being a radical progressive alternative their approach to the constitution sure is stuck in the 1800s.

A similar mistake was also made by  C. C. Edwards who attempted to equate a free vote being held by the shadow cabinet to a collapse of collective responsibility. If this form of CCR were to be applied to governance then practically every cabinet and shadow cabinet since 1979 if not earlier would have been subject to this “chaos” rendering the convention of CCR effectively defunct. In fact, by their very own definition, the government has seemingly already collapsed into CCR mayhem as is evidenced by Ministers either abstaining or voting against the motion M560.

 Yet as is evidenced by the rather luscious legislative history consisting of thousands of bills, statutory instruments, and statements being brought before the House one can see that clearly this is not the case and that the system is working as intended.

Either way with a fragile government and a seemingly split  C&S partner it is clear that the supposed collapse of CCR within the Opposition is merely a smokescreen to provide cover for a weak and ultimately faltering minority government that not only can’t stand opposition but as was admitted by the Chancellor does not know the full cost and extent of its policies.

CCR breached as government give contradictory message on Welfare Devolution

Coronavirus outbreak in Edinburgh 'should see Scottish Parliament close' -  Daily Record

The Prime Minister appears to have lost control of his cabinet as they give contradictory signals on M562.  The motion, written by /u/Tommy2Boys, asks the government to rule out devolving anything against the will of the Scottish parliament. 

The Prime Minister motelbinds was quick to say he made it clear he would not devolve powers to the parliament with KalvinLokan backing him up,questioning if the motion was necessary.

However a few hours later the DEFRA minister spoke on the motion and contradicted the Prime Minister’s stance saying he would not support the motion. He argued that  “The Scottish government does not represent the will of the Scottish people on this particular issue as much as a direct referendum in which they said they wanted their government to have control over welfare. We also have to consider the will of the Scottish people within this parliament. The fact is, the majority voted for Solidarity. And we promised that we would fight for welfare devolution. It would be disingenuous for us to go against that promise.” and told the House that he would not his approval to the motion which urges the government to not devolve welfare which he labelled a “violation”.

It is clear that the DEFRA Secretary has a different stance to that of the Prime Minister and it is still unclear as to how the government will whip the vote on the motion. This is another moment which dents the government’s credibility given a breach of CCR so early on.  It will be interesting to see if the DEFRA Secretary resigns and the PM loses his first cabinet member of if they will be brought back in line. 

*Press Persona

The Chancellor has no answers [Op-Ed]

Labour's John McDonnell to quit front line politics after bruising election  result - LBC

Britain’s self appointed maverick has entered Number 11 Downing Street, bunking up with his Labour counterpart. His first speech outside Number 11 Downing Street said that he will be happy to answer any questions asked of him publicly. Despite this,  the Chancellor has no real answers as evidenced by his recent piece in the press. His commentary amounted to little more than a “No u” and he couldn’t even stick to the facts inventing his own versions of the facts on the political history of defence spending. When questioned on this, he told the British people they should cope with his lies. This government is going down a dangerous path already.

> We start with decrying “endless spending packages”. This would seem to imply unending spending is a problem that needs to be curbed.

> Then we see them decry that “at a time of escalating tensions and uncertainty they are proposing to slash funding to our armed forces.”

Left with no defence on the fiscal cost of their policies, the Chancellor resorts to attacking others because he has no answers himself. I can hardly say I’m surprised as he had no defence for his election manifesto which have seen the national debt soar.Defence spending is set to rise to 2.3% in 2024 and this rise in Defence spending is fully costed, its contained in a budget under which debt to GDP will fall. 

So unlike Mr Chompsky’s claims the Shadow Chancellor is not shaking any magic money tree, the Defence spending rises are fully costed and funded in the last budget which provides a fiscal framework for debt to GDP fall. 

>They never released a plan with their target saying why it was needed, what had changed from the 2.0% target, they just wanted to call the Tories soft on defence.

First of all this isn’t true as MGuido has pointed out. The 2.5% pledge was put forward by the Conservative minority government at the time. By the way they did publish a threat assessment and where this money would go at the time. I happened to not agree with it which is why my party put forward a smaller, more targeted defence package in our manifesto. Current Defence spending levels are justified by the recent procurement document published by the Phoenix government which clearly the Chancellor has not read. The Official Opposition  will work to protect this funding for the procurement and to ensure our military is not cut.

The Chancellor then attacks the LPUK for spending more than the NATO target on Defence. However he doesn’t mention he is spending nearly three times the aid target set by the United Nations. The government’s wants to spend your money in other countries, probably to advance their aims of world socialism and because they think they can match China’s Belt and Road initiative with a couple billion quid. I’ve never seen a set of people so clueless. Under this government your taxes will go up, and that money won’t be the spent in the UK economy to boost growth or your jobs, it will be going abroad so we can mythical soft power. Let us be under no illusion, you will be poorer with this clueless Chancellor. 

It’s interesting that large recipients of US foreign aid such as Egypt and Pakistan actually voted against US policy interests at the UN whilst their votes were more closely correlated with that of Cuba who doesn’t receive any US aid at all. 

I will also note here the increase in defence spending in the last budget is 0.3% of GDP whereas the coalition agreement contains international development spending at 2% a GDP, a rise of 1.3% of GDP. This is uncosted spending and the government hasn’t the slightest clue how it will pay for their increases in the structural deficit. If they did, I’m sure we’d have heard it now instead of the deflection from the Chancellor.

> Considering what LPUK has considered to be over regulation in the past, from basic housing standards

The Chancellor doesn’t even have a basic grasp of what housing standards are, his rants about toilets were thoroughly debunked by anyone who had actually read the regulations regarding toilets. The regulations he speaks of were regulations that were never affected by LPUK legislation. We shouldn’t be listening to him. The Blurple government helped to pave the way for the abolition of the green belt and to secure planning reform to get house prices down. However, don’t expect the left to be happy for you, they despise home ownership and independence from the state. 

> to saying cigarettes cause cancer, one has to wonder what they mean here. 

Once again no understanding of the policy even after it was explained a surgeon general warning would remain. You can begin to see this press piece was together hastily with no regard for facts or the truth in a weak attack on the newly-promoted Shadow Chancellor. 

We can then get some vague nonsense resorting “You mad bro” when it comes to the budget process. It seems this will be the government’s approach to any and all criticism going forward. It appears he has a short memory when solidarity piled the attacks on the previous budget and the Phoenix government.

It was also amusing to see the Chancellor complaining about the coalition agreement and his manifesto being attacked. It seems like the guy is quaking in his boots, now that he has to actually deliver instead of shout from the sidelines.

It must be a shock horror to the Chancellor as a political party attacks uncosted funding and economic policies it was elected to oppose and champions the ones in its manifesto. It would be convenient for the Chancellor if the opposition stopped holding him and his fiscal bomb to account but be rest assured we will be here to scrutinise and add the sums up for the Chancellor if he will not do so for himself. 

This article written by  the Right Honourable Sir /u/Friedmanite19 OM KCMG KBE CT LVO PC MP, The Leader of Her Majesty’s Most Loyal Opposition

An opinion piece – The Midwife

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is callthemidwife.jpg
The High Middle Ages, beginning after 1000AD would be the birthplace of what we might recognise most vividly as the Aristocracy. This article aims to critique that birth, expound the potential parallel to our contemporary political challenge and to offer some balanced and respectful conclusions on the road map of our nation. On that note it endeavours not to restrain from an honest critique of the failures of the historical and contemporary aristocracy, nor is it hands off in expressing a critical assessment of our new government’s position, emphasising the real risks of birthing and nurturing an institution through infancy that shares common traits and values to that established institution in our society.

Let’s begin with the infancy of the High Medieval Aristocracy.

Initially an Anglo-Saxon Institution, and expanded across our land after the Kingdom of Wessex’s unification of one Kingdom – England, shires were governed by an Ealdorman. These shires by 1014 had been administratively organised into Earldoms, inherited by the appointed Earl or Sheriff. On the arrival of the Normans to our shores, this continued under William the Conqueror, and it was only on the ascension of Edward III that his sons were appointed Dukes. Kings would establish the honours of Marquesses and Viscounts to further establish differentiation of noble rank above Earl.

Behind the grandeur and ceremony that we’ve become accustomed too, as an institution this aristocracy was not born out of aspiration for a flourishing economic, social and cultural state, even with the foundations of that unified Kingdom. Instead, and with honest humility it should be recognised, that it was born from the advancement of self interest. Evidenced in how it demonstrated its rule in its infancy. The stealing and seizing of land under a pretence of piety, justice and efficiency was all too common in that nobility. No one, not even the religious monastics were spared the extortion as lavish wealth was accumulated, only to be employed for private gain. All of which was accomplished with a great degree of success under these claims; that it was morally right, that it was under crown authority, that it would provide economic sustainability and not exhaustively, that it would establish justice for all within the Kingdom.

Whatever your conclusions about the aristocracy – past, present or future – what transpired in reality was the establishment of powerful dynasties that would be wealthy beyond comprehension, powerful politically in society, and as was inevitable with such nurturing in its infancy, corrupt beyond belief. Nobles flourished with stark divisions in the standards of living to the majority in medieval society. The birth of the aristocracy was a painful ordeal, and it’s honest to confess that the medieval nobility could often be described as far from noble.

For the sake of balance and honesty there is much fault to be found with the aristocracy – even today. It’s worth noting that the influence and impact of those dynasties and those early shires under an Earldom can still be felt today. The use of leasehold sales for the homes built upon their hereditary land is a perfect example of self interest. Prior to reforms of the hereditary peerages in 1999, the number of hereditary Lords who failed to contribute as part of their constitutional duty to the House of Lords was scandalous. It should be reflected that in its infancy these characteristics were exemplified, and those characteristics remain. It would be foolish to defend the aristocracy as without fault, nor without the need for greater reform. It should be clear by now that this is not a defense of the institution.

The political influence of the Aristocracy, and the further development of the role of the institution is outside the scope of our examination, but those early foundations are important to view how the medieval earldoms, with particular emphasis on their land management, were established.

One sweeping change for the Aristocracy would come at the beginning of the 20th century. Under the weight of economic and social changes, those shires, now referred to as estates, hosting grand manor houses rather than a motte and bailey would in the aftermath of the Great War feel the first pinches of a changing world and a new phenomenon. Those unwilling to adapt and change to a new world and new technology found themselves collapsing. The presence of these estates today, and the continued presence of hereditary peers in the Lords even after 1999 make for a testimony to their survivability.

Endorsed and facilitated by the Left in the aftermath of both wars, inheritance taxes would be a bitter blow to these institutions, and the agricultural practices of a nation would change. These changes would include a radical change – farm owners would now be handling the responsibility for land they would now own and the techniques they would employ. The impact of that decision has been felt across the last century, and as agriculture has grown and adapted we’ve witnessed a shift from centralised large farms with much aristocratic oversight to an enterprising model, fueled by experience and the privatisation.

That change, and we must give credit where it is due, was in significant part because of a liberal boldness at the end of the Great War. It would appear however that the Left has changed its thinking, and set out to reapproach agricultural policy with radical ideas. It is not misplaced to be searching to better serve a struggling industry, but it is curious as to where we have seemingly found ourselves. Drawn to unexpected sources for the new inspiration. Large and influential farms, a centralised workforce, and the direction of local officials from the Department of Agriculture – nationalisation of the entire agricultural industry. All of this looks familiar. If you pull on this umbilical cord, following it through history, you might well find yourself in the High Middle Ages.

The Left have yet to announce the ‘good news’ of a pregnancy, but they’ve conceived the beginnings of a new aristocracy.

The lessons of Eastern Europe during the Great War with the rise of the Bolsheviks and nationalisation under trade unions was an experiment framed as morally right, economically sensible and bold steps towards true justice for all. It was implemented by seizing, stealing, and plundering. What would follow were deeply rooted problems within soviet society, far from the utopia promised. The wealth, power and double standards between those who rule and those who labour remained deeply entrenched. What materialised was something oppressive and dark, but be at no mistake, it was also the birth of an aristocracy in everything but name.

The Rose Government have set out their trajectory, promising agricultural change that will reforge a fairer and more prosperous society.

They may not arrive in the delivery room adorned with a wig, red robes of state or an honorary title gifted from the crown, but this chapter parallels history already well worn in the Middle Ages.

Call the Midwife!

To great surprise, the Left’s new aristocracy is potentially well into its first trimester.

This article was written by flatartifact, a new member of the LPUK

The fiscal bomb that keeps on giving – opinion

Dominic Sandbrook: How John McDonnell threatens Britain | Daily Mail Online

It is no secret that the British left has had a difficult relationship with fiscal responsibility. From the gargantuan deficit of the Labour’s GEXIV manifesto to the 2.25 trillion fiscal rollercoaster that were the many  iterations of the Solidarity manifesto those on the left have almost always put fiscal responsibility on the backburner. 

That is why the fact that the Broad-left document contains a series of extravagant spending pledges should come as no surprise. Nonetheless most previous center-left and left-wing  governments such as Sunrise opted to propose at least some minimum  measures to curb the increases in deficit such as tax rises. This time however there is no such assurances  with the government proposing to rid itself of  a quarter of all revenues from LVT by devolving the tax fully without considering how big of a role the tax plays in funding our public services. The coalition agreement shows us this is a government without a plan and will make it up as it goes along. It’s clear the Treasury will need to raise taxation on ordinary people and it will be interesting to see if the government is straight up with people that it won’t be the ordinary workers paying for this but the wealthy

On the expenditure side, there are proposals to effectively throw away tenths if not hundreds of billions on a DOA nationalisation program. Even if we ignore nationalisation the structural deficit is set to surge massively as day-to-day expenditure is set to skyrocket even further. Whether that be “free” personal care, extra foreign aid or any other of the endless spending packages proposed. 

A deeply concerning fact is that the United Kingdom does not have this money, almost all the projects contained within documents are most likely going to be funded by borrowing and borrowing alone. Thanks to which the new government would all but guarantee that our children would find themselves saddled with enormous amounts of debt all for the privilege of getting to pay for an inferior service from the state.

Most reprehensible of all however are the government’s fiscal priorities or lack thereof. At a time of escalating tensions and uncertainty they are proposing to slash funding to our armed forces, while also pushing for a 2% target of international aid, a department that has time and time again been shown to be a white elephant. The government will be forced to put your taxes, raise taxes on ordinary British workers so it can ship your money overseas. The same can also be said for the proposal to spend billions of pounds reinstating regressive VAT relief that benefits the rich all the while wasting billions on subsidising cooperatives and kneecapping successful businesses with an array of punitive and spiteful measures such as a cut in free port numbers and a swath of nonsensical regulations.

 Fortunately the government finds it without a working majority Nonetheless with a PM hellbent on ramming through their agenda and a Chancellor seemingly oblivious of the cost of their own policies it is imperative that the center and the center-right  come together and  put the brakes on before it is too late…

PM apologises for Minister’s comments on cabinet’s first day.

Prime Minister motelblinds unveiled his cabinet today, laying out the team he will be making responsible for delivering on the government’s radical agenda.

Among the appointments already gaining controversy are those of HKNorman, to Housing Secretary, and Alvarolage, to Transport Secretary, as comments made yesterday, one which was deleted subsequently, have resurfaced, showing the pair appearing to offer some support for the actions of the Provisional Irish Republican Army.

The comments were made underneath the announcement of the “Provisional PPUK” a splinter organization from the PWP. Alvarolage made the first comment, saying “The provos are back at it”, a reference to the nickname the “provos” given to members of the Provisional IRA. 

The controversial comments come after this, with HKNorman replying “the wrong side of history this time”, apparently implying the PIRA had been on the  right side. Alvarolage agreed with this assessment, replying “indeed” to HKs comment.

Reaction was immediate, with Seimer1234 asking “are you serious”, and eelsemaj22 asking “what are you on about”. After this reaction, HKNorman attempted to cover-up the comments by deleting them.

The PIRA, which the pair appeared to have been offering support for, was a terrorist organisation on the island of Ireland which killed 1,700 people.

The Prime Minister gave the following comment: 

“Those comments were regrettable mistakes which I have addressed to the respective Secretaries, the Provisional IRA were terrorists and they are no friends of this Government.”

An OO Spokesperson gave the following comment:

“The comments made by these two now Cabinet Secretaries are beyond the pale. For a party whose NI branch is the SDLP, a party who continuously showed the PIRA were on the wrong side of history throughout the Troubles, such comments are deeply saddening. Both Ministers should apologise for them and apologise to the victims of the PIRA as soon as possible”

Far-left deal reached as parties scramble for number 10

Written by Harry  Johnson and Tres Commas

On the back of the leaked Groko, the Telegraph has obtained documents revealing a coalition deal between Solidarity, Labour and the WNP with a C+S agreement from the PWP. If formed this would represent the strongest leftist government seen in recent times. The deal sees Solidarity leader motelblinds as Prime Minister, while current PM Youma will become DPM. The deal contains a multiple of policies which are far-reaching and radical but without a clear majority in the Commons how much of this will actually be passed is still in question. 

The breakdown of cabinet can be found here: 

Prime Ministermotelblinds
Deputy Prime MinisterYoumaton
First Secretary of Stateohprkl
Minister for the Cabinet Office, Paymaster GeneralSolidarity
Secretary of State for EqualitiesLabour
Chancellor of the ExchequerSolidarity
Chief Secretary to the Treasury (attending Cabinet)Labour
Secretary of State for the Home DepartmentLabour
Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth AffairsSolidarity
Assistant Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (attending cabinet)Labour
Secretary of State for International TradeLabour
Minister of State for European Affairs (attending cabinet)Labour
Secretary of State for International DevelopmentSolidarity
Secretary of State for DefenceSolidarity
Minister of State for Cybersecurity (attending cabinet)Labour
Secretary of State for Business and Economic DevelopmentSolidarity
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for JusticeLabour
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media, and SportLabour
Secretary of State for Housing, Communities, and Local GovernmentSolidarity
Minister of State for the Northern Powerhouse (attending cabinet)Solidarity
Secretary of State for the Environment, Food, and Rural AffairsSolidarity
Secretary of State for Energy and Climate ChangeSolidarity
Secretary of State for Workers and Trade UnionsSolidarity
Secretary of State for EducationLabour
Secretary of State for TransportSolidarity
Secretary of State for Health and Social CareSolidarity
Secretary of State for ScotlandSolidarity
Secretary of State for WalesArchism_
Secretary of State for Northern IrelandLabour
Lord President of the Council, Leader of the House of CommonsSolidarity
Lord Privy Seal, Leader of the House of LordsLabour
Chief Whip (Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury)Solidarity
Lords Chief Whip (Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen at Arms)Labour
Attorney General for EnglandSolidarity
Solicitor General for EnglandLabour
Chancellor of the Duchy of LancasterLabour
Chief MouserBubbles

On the economy there appears to be a lack of clarity as to what sort of measures the socialist government would undertake to balance the books. There is no mention of income and corporate taxes nor VAT ,with the only exception being proposed devolution of Land Value Taxes which would see a significant chunk of government revenue slashed. Moreover the document also refers to several tremendous increases in expenditure such as the near trebling of the international development budget to 2% of the GDP , nationalisation of water and energy services and other endeavours such as the construction of 3 million council homes as well as a “transition to Green Economy”.  All in all the proposed agreement sets out no clear plan as to how to adequately address the eye watering costs of its proposals let alone how to pass them.

The Home Department front there is set to be major changes to immigration. The government plans to scrap the points-based immigration system and grant amnesty for non-criminal undocumented migrants in the UK. They will also stop using detention centers for any non-violent immigration violations. They also intend to pursue Freedom of Movement for persons and goods in the Commonwealth. This is sure to raise a few alarm bells in Westminster due to its vagueness and potentially to once again put the UK back in a supranational agreement with no control over our borders. 

The Solidarity-led government will also oversee many nationalizations. The government plans to nationalise busing and rail. The costs of such a plan is expected to run into the hundreds of billions. Another plan is to mandate a four day four week which is expected to damage the economy by 85 billion and impact government services like the police and NHS. There is also the proposal to nationalise all PFI debts ,totalling over a quartet of a trillion pounds.

While practically all departments are set to received drastic increases in expenditure with the only major exemption being the Ministry of Defence , which is set to see its budget slashed back down to 2% of the GDP putting national defence effectively on par with international development.The MOD is set to find its resources stretched thin under this deal as the authors also propose new spending initiatives under the Ministry such as a  National Defence Industry Plan and National Shipbuilding Scheme both of which would likely require the addition of new resources to the ministry. They also plan to give back the Chagos Islands, a very contentious subject and since the Tories and LPUK backed a deal making sure Parliament had a say in all territal handovers it is unclear how the government will manage this without a Commons majority. 

They also plan to commit 2% of GDP to international aid which is expected to be over 40 billion pounds. In addition to the plan to limit England to just one free port is sure to damage the UK’s international trade abilities. 

On the education front, the government will ban all grammar schools and impose state control. This is a move against public opinion as evidenced by the results of the general elections and polling carried out by Yougov. 

A notable omission from this deal is the brexit deal and the controversial Irish border protocol , which may very well appear to be the most problematic of this deal so far as Solidarity and the SDLP both have demanded that the protocol be amended ,with the latter opting to collapse the Northern Irish Executive, while Labour helped author that very deal. It is interesting to see how the socialist government would try to tackle the issue at hand.

Continuing on with the apparently contradictory trade policy the broad-left government is set to pursue a trade agreement with the USA A move which no doubt will cause controversy amongst the leftist orthodoxy  and a significant portion of Solidarity electorate who voted in Solidarity on the promise of challenging the United States.

Analysis:

The deal presents a series of bold and radical policies that are likely to unsettle the more moderate Labourites especially in the light of Labour attacks on Solidarity last term. Much also remains to be seen on the issue of Brexit where there appears to be a significant gap between the Solidarity Party and their Labour partners.The question now appears to be whether  Solidarity could exert enough influence over its junior coalition partners to force them to go back on their own deal.

A budget appears to be another sticking point given the current center and center-right makeup of the parliament as well as the enormous costs attached to the government’s plans with no clear proposal to pay for them.

While the plan is ambitious how much of it can be implemented is in the air due to the current arithmetic in Parliament. Concessions will have to be made with the government cutting deals with the Lib Dems , the Tories  or Coalition. 

Government of Disunity – Tory Labour and PWP coalition leaked

Image result for number ten downing street

Written By Harry Johnson and Tres Commas

As the deadline for government formation looms the Telegraph has managed to obtain what purports to be a copy of a coalition deal for a “unity” government. The proposed government would find itself with 53 out of 150 seats in the house of Commons. If passed the deal would see the head of the Independent Grouping /u/SpectacularSalad become Prime minister with the Conservative Leader /u/Padanub becoming Deputy Prime Minister and current Prime Minister  /u/Youmaton becoming First Secretary of State. A full breakdown of cabinet can be viewed below

The deal represents what seems to be a last ditch attempt to prevent the LPUK-led or Solidarity government. It would be a surprising move indeed, not just with the positioning of the Tories and Labour but especially given their recent election results where the old two party giants both lost seats leaving LPUK and Solidarity the largest parties in Parliament. 

Policywise the deal appears to be a hodge-podge of Labour and Conservative policies. Protectionist measures appear to be the centerpoint of the deal ,which proposes to impose “preferential taxation rules to support heritage goods under this scheme, allowing us to support British Goods with historic and cultural value.” and the rollout of geographic indicators  The deal also proposes a range of other expenditures such as large funding increases for the National Health Service, partial abolition of tuition fees ,a new benefit for workers under the age of 25 as well as a slew of other  vague expenditures. There is also the vague proposal to go to the moon ,which according to NASA projections would cost tens of billions alone.  It is unclear whether all of these proposals can be realistically funded with higher rates of income tax alone.

The coalition takes a middle of the road approach to immigration, opting to propose a “liberal and reasonable” system with proposed low barriers to labour mobility and reciprocal freedom of movement deals . It is unknown whether the government would choose to retain the current Conservative immigration system or chose to pursue a Labour-backed alternative.

Perhaps the most interesting is the proposal for tax power parity. If implemented the proposal would see Corporation and income tax powers devolved to Wales , with potential corporation tax devolution to Scotland. This appears to be a major concession from the Conservative as it would see the Tories capitulate on most devolution issues. The Conservatives also appear to have lost out on FTPA with the deal pledging to support the now-repealed Act.

 Nonetheless the document also contains other major concessions and u-turns from the constituent parties with the Labour  Party appearing to capitulate on Trident abolition and many defence proposals. Moreover very few concessions appear to have been given to the junior members of this coalition, the PWP.

Analysis:

The self-proclaimed purpose of the government is to lockout any prospective Libertarian-lead government from Number 10, beyond this there appears to be very few other common goals. It remains to be seen how the prospective government would handle the Irish border issue given that the prospective Prime Minister and members of the People’s Workers Party have vociferously opposed the Border protocol , with Labour and the Conservatives supporting it. The deal is also silent on specific budget issues with the authors choosing to strike a specific budget deal in the future ,while committing to large spending increases without a plan to adequately fund them and control the deficit.

Devolution appears to also be a potential flashpoint as it is unclear whether Conservative backbenchers who only last term attempted to prevent the devolution of Corporation tax to Wales would find themselves forced to vote for unprecedented  devolution of taxation powers seemingly without a referendum.

While if successful the coalition would be able to command a minority government, many questions would remain over the stability of such a government and if it would be a betrayal of the last election. The Conservatives and Labour still sit on opposite spectrums and even despite compromises eyebrows will be raised if this is just one final attempt by the aging parties of old trying to cling to power. Also bizarrely is the appointment of an independent Salad as PM which would be the first time in modern history an independent Prime Minister would take office. Of course this also apart from the final question being how the public who supported in greater numbers the LPUK and Solidarity react to this old party government which promises much more of the same ,while offering a seemingly disjointed cabinet.