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Sunday 27th August 2006

3pm ToryDiary update: What issues might frame the next General Election?

BLOGS

ToryDiary focuses on a new poll that shows public support for lower taxation:

Also on the ToryDiary: Cameron questions Thatcher's South Africa policy

'ABOLITION OF STAMP DUTY ON SHARES BEFORE STABILITY'

"The Conservatives open up an important offensive today against Gordon Brown by unveiling plans to abolish stamp duty on shares.  Outlining the party's first tax-cutting proposal, the shadow chancellor, George Osborne, said the move would form part of a package of measures designed to increase competitiveness and boost the value of pensions." - Sunday Telegraph

Lilley_peter_3 PETER LILLEY ON THE IMMIGRATION CRISIS

"The notion that immigration boosts growth confuses size with income. Of course a bigger labour force will produce more output. But it does not increase output and income per head. Indeed, if cheap labour removes the pressure on employers to raise productivity, it will make living standards grow more slowly, as has happened since immigration accelerated. The notion that immigration is necessary to fill "shortages" is plausible but nonsense. In a freely working labour market, pay rates rise to the level needed to persuade domestic workers to acquire the necessary skills or perform an unpleasant job. There was a shortage of nurses as long as their pay was held down by siphoning off nurses from the Third World. Since nurses' pay rose, the shortage has disappeared." - Sunday Telegraph

Goldie_annabel_7 SCOTTISH TORIES ANNOUNCE THREE-STRIKES-AND-YOU'RE-OUT CRIME POLICY

Annabel Goldie MSP, Leader of the Scottish Tories: “We propose that anyone given a third custodial sentence for any crime will receive an extra tariff automatically, which will be proportionate to the three custodial sentences. This policy will help prisons to fulfil their objectives; protecting the public, deterring criminals, punishing them for their crimes and rehabilitation.  I also want to take a long, hard look at how our prisons operate. Too many are rife with drugs and too few successfully address offending behaviour. That is unacceptable and our proposal for longer imprisonment for some will be matched with more meaningful rehabilitation in our prisons.”

>>> Related link: Is Annabel Goldie ready to move to right of Cameron?

"Alex Salmond is on track to take Scotland to the brink of independence, according to a startling new poll which shows the SNP has opened up a clear lead over Labour.  With just eight months to go until the Holyrood elections, the party has established a four-point lead over its nearest rivals, and appears to be pulling away." - Scotland on Sunday

CHARLES KENNEDY PLOTS HIS RETURN TO THE LIBDEM FRONTBENCH

"Charles Kennedy yesterday set out the likely timetable for his return to the centre-stage of politics: a major speech on domestic and foreign affairs at next month's Liberal Democrat conference, followed by an end to his self-imposed silence in Commons debates and a possible front-bench role by late next year." - Observer

Hewitttorcn PATRICIA HEWITT'S TAXPAYER-FUNDED LIFE COACH

"Patricia Hewitt and other cabinet ministers are receiving “life coaching” at taxpayers’ expense to help them cope with the pressures of government.  Chartered psychologists are each being paid an estimated £250 per hour to act as mentors to the health secretary and her senior civil servants." - Sunday Times

REAGAN'S STAR WARS

"If Reagan had his way on SDI, threats from North Korea and Iran would loom smaller today." - Melanie Kirkpatrick in The Wall Street Journal

ROWAN WILLIAMS U-TURNS ON HOMOSEXUALITY

"The archbishop of Canterbury has told homosexuals that they need to change their behaviour if they are to be welcomed into the church, The Sunday Telegraph can reveal.  Rowan Williams has distanced himself from his one-time liberal support of gay relationships and stressed that the tradition and teaching of the Church has in no way been altered by the Anglican Communion's consecration of its first openly homosexual bishop." - The Sunday Telegraph 

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