Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Article featuring Jay Ginn at the G20 protests

This article prompted a letter the following week from a coorespondant who was unsure about whether protesters were largely peaceful or largely violent.

Jay's response to the article:

The headline is grossly misleading in suggesting that the demonstrators were generally out of control, which was certainly not the case while I was there.

I saw only a couple of youths smashing windows at RBS in
BartholomewStreet and it was these who I may have described as 'out of control' (though I don’t remember using that phrase and actually these two seemed to be acting quite deliberately).

At that point in time, there were only about half a dozen protesters in that street, offering no encouragement to the glass-smashers. Its true that I said the policeaction in 'kettling' the demonstrators led to frustration and pushingby demonstrators who - quite justifiably in my view - wanted to breakthrough the cordon.

In retrospect - viewing the photos and videos - it seems it
was the police who became 'out of control', although by the time I left(actually to join the demo at the US Embassy) they were not being particularly violent.

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

New video uploaded of G20 protests

The almost daily revelations of aggressive police behaviour at the protests, has prompted me to look through the footage and the photos I took on April 1st. It turns out I was running the movie mode on the camera as the the police started to assemble their vans in order to block exit routes around the Bank of England.

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

MEP's Pension sleaze: Open Europe says, "Give credit to the likes of Caroline Lucas"

Last Friday's 'Five Live's Drive' show (link below) hosted by Peter Allen and Anita Anand had an ear catching story on MEP pension entitlements. It caught my attention because Green MEP Caroline Lucas was cited as an MEP that had declined to take up the offer of an additional voluntary pension.

MEP's throughout Europe are entitled to the equivalent pension entitlements as MP's in their respective national parliaments. This is funded by the European tax payer.
However, they are also entitled to a second voluntary pension which is again funded by the European tax payer. For every one £1 contributed by the MEP, the EU contributes an additional £2. Unbelievably, the £1 that the MEP puts in can be claimed on expenses. This whole sorry situation has come to the fore because thanks to "casino style investments", there is a deficit in the scheme which, you've guessed it, will be covered by the European taxpayer. Sigh.

The Open Europe press release notes that tracking down the MEP's who are profiting from this pension hasn't been easy as the list is a "closely guarded secret". Unsurprisingly the two Green MEP's are not on the list - and WELL DONE TO THEM - but interestingly, MEP's from the Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem parties are on the list. Even UKIP, the party that moans about every British pound the UK taxpayer gives over to the EU is on the list. Shame on all the other political parties.

79 per cent of British MEP's have signed up to this morally unacceptable pension scheme. I am not surprised that the two GREEN MEP's are not on the list. Green politicians are ethically and morally minded. They tend to come from a campaigning background and enter politics to "make change". Jean Lambert was (and still is) a notable peace campaigner and Caroline Lucas worked for Oxfam.
I looked up Caroline's web site and found the following paragraph:

Additional Pension Scheme

British MEPs are members of the same pension scheme as our national MPs at present. There is also an additional pension scheme set up in the EP which Members may opt to join, but Caroline has chosen not to join this on principle, as she regards it as a misuse of EU taxpayers’ money. When the new Members’ Statute becomes operational in 2009, this will include a pension entitlement and it is likely that the existing additional pension scheme will close to new Members.

and Jean has the following paragraph on her web site

Additional Pension Scheme

British MEPs are members of the same pension scheme as our national MPs at present. There is also an additional pension scheme set up in the EP which Members may opt to join, but I have chosen not to join it. When the new Members’ Statute becomes operational in 2009, this will include a pension entitlement and it is likely that the existing additional pension scheme will close to new Members.

Greens are not part of this newly developed political class. Our principles are always consistent: a fair ans just society, peaceful solutions to conflict and genuine stewardship of the planet for future generations. Those voters that are looking for conviction politicians to represent them need not look any further than the Green Party.

Link to the 'Drive' show on Five Live forward to 1 hr 50mins into the programme.

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Jean Lambert MEP at the Euro fundraiser in Croydon

Big thanks to all the bands and GP members who supported the Green Party Euro Fundraiser in Croydon on Saturday. Fiddler Aimes and Jean Lambert conducted a memorable raffle! A montage of the acts is on the Croydon Greens You Tube page

As the Green Party only accepts donations from businesses that meet our ethical and environmental code - which means unlike other parties, we are not in the pockets of corporations - we are greatly dependent on events like the fundraiser and donations from individuals to run and effective campaigns. Donations for the Re-Elect Jean Lambert campaign can be made via paypal here.
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Wednesday, April 08, 2009

London Greens Euro fundraiser

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Sunday, April 05, 2009

Letter to the Croydon Advertiser re Haling Manor 'consultation' meeting

Dear Editor,

I feel compelled to write to your paper having attended the Haling Manor sham consultation meeting, for its conversion to Harris Academy Purley.

Once the slide show presentation narrated by the Chief Executive of Harris Federation was over, a procession of parents, students and concerned individuals took turns to slam the proposal. In fact, a number were at pains to point out that the deal was already done because the position for headmaster is already being advertised.

Pupils and parents bombarded the panel with facts and experiences that indicate why Haling Manor is rated in the top 3 per cent in the country when taking into account the numbers of pupils on free school meals, special educational needs and English not spoken as a first language.

By the end of the evening the Harris contingent and representatives from the council looked beleaguered and isolated. Unbelievablely, Mr Moynihan, the Harris Chief Executive, asserts in your article that the meeting "went very well!". Dave Hill, the Director of Children’s services, struggled to keep the frustration of so many under control.

The most memorable moment for me occurred when a Haling Manor pupil stood up and asked why Lord Harris (Harris Carpets), who was keen to point out how wealthy he had become with just one GCSE, couldn’t just give the school £1 million pound if he wanted to improve the school; was it because of his ego that he needed to take it over and emblazon the front of the school with his name? It bears all the hallmarks of a chainstore retailer looking for suitable premises.

Earlier the Harris and council representatives stated that Haling Manor was a good school and the headmaster was great. The whole thing is nonsense.

Labour councillors attempting to represent the objecting voices are dismissed by the Conservatives as being opportunistic because Labour Minsters, Jim Knight and Ed Balls, agree with the Tory proposals.

The only lifeline left for the council must be to hold a fair ballot on the decision. One was offered to parents in Sheffield when similar disgust was vented at the council.

Yours sincerely

Shasha Khan
Croydon Green Party

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Two local members on the letters page.

Great to see Stan's letter appearing in the Croydon Guardian.

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

G20 Meltdown video featuring Croydon Greens and a cameo by Russell Brand

Croydon Greens following the silver horse against financial crimes.
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Standing up for what matters