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Cameron well and truely wiped the floor with Blair today, was very good indeed!

Cameron completely knocked Blair out today, a very good performance, well done!!!!!

It's my bet that Blair's response will be to avoid Parliament even more than before.

Then we'll have Hague vs Prescott Mark. Even better.

Cameron v Blair is important. Hague joking with Prescott is knockabout stuff to put thre voters off.

The mess that is coming makes it seem that if Brown succeeds next spring he would be well advised to call an election. In this respect I quote two excerpts from another blog today. The first is a serious eurosceptic NOT in UKIP - - -

"I still think Brown is the one we want to be in power, he will push the EU over the top and enjoy doing it. The country would back Brown, but perhaps his party would split. Cameron would be a disaster as PM.
- - - - - - - -
I have a friend who used to work for the Conservative Party. He is very astute and he has been saying for some time that Brown will take us out of the EU. He says that everything will be in such a mess if and when he takes over as PM, he will tell us that the only way in which we can take control of our economy, is to leave the EU. He will put the blame for the mess fairly and squarely on Blair."

Looks like a winning pitch to me!

Im sorry but Brown will never take us out of the EU

There's no credibility whatsoever to any argument that brown will take us out the EU. His character is one of caution. If he hasn't the guts to knife Blair, then he certainly doesn't have any to take us out the EU.

The PM isn't accountable at the despatch box for his position in the Labour Party. For Tories who pretend to "value Parliament" to ask totally irrelevant questions in this way merely shows up their own position for being cant.

Andrew and Michael. You could be right BUT Blair unexpectedly saddled chancellor Brown with taking our NET contribution to the EU from £4.5bn approx to £12bn in 2013. This is insupportable with all the other chickens coming home to roost and vould be a chance 'with one bound to make his escape' and wreck Blair's "legacy" too.

Brown is one of the EU's biggest supporters. It is nonsense to suggest that he would take Britain out.


Have you finally lost the last tenuous grip you had on reality? Brown to take us out of the EU?! This is the political punditry of the utterly self-deluded. You'll be telling me his law and order policy will be to bring back hanging next.

Funny you should say that Gareth. Only the other day I was wondering which Cabinet minister would be the first to float that one. Most likely Milburn or Byers as outriders. I think "hanging for people trafficking and drug smuggling" has a certain ring about it. "The destroyers of British lives have no right to life in my Britain," vowed an emotional Gordon Brown/John Reid/Jack Straw/Jamie Oliver etc etc

lol William. Stranger things have happened. Perhaps Jamie Oliver will recommend obese people are hanged so they don't give the wrong idea to kids in his next NOTW manifesto for the simple and deluded.

The Centre for Policy Studies have published quite a good manifesto, which covers all our favourite topics, education, prisons, tax and EU/EFTA.


There was an excellent sketch on R4 the other day… in a vote on the death penalty, the Yes votes were collected in a hat. Then, to balance the injustice whenever an innocent person was executed, a name would be drawn from the Yes hat and executed too – after all, the Yes vote had considered that the occasional dead innocent person was a price worth paying. Made me laugh, anyway.


Amazing the effect that swigging too much Strongbow has on the brain...

Gordon Brown to pull Britain out of the European Union? LOL! That's a good'un!

What next? Gordon Brown revealed as closet England football fan? Hahahaha... Oh.

Oh indeed Daniel!

His character is one of caution

Too right. He has a "Yes Prime Minister" aversion for courageous decisions. He is more likely to introduce a flat tax and slash public spending than so much as say boo to the EU.

Would anyone want an endorsement from St. Toni of B-Liar.
His previous endorsements have all resulted in the previous recepients being sacked or resigning.

Gordon Brown would not be getting the full backing of Murdoch if the EU had any doubts about his being EUcompliant, Christina.

Brown was willing to push for the Euro in 2003, when Blair was at the peak of his powers pre-Iraq. He later agreed to delay the Euro for another four years and review it again then. He has doubled the size of the public sector since 1997 in monetary terms, and he has often spoken of our convergence with the EU's economy.

He is stated to be considering changing our system over to PR, which would ease our absorbtion into the EU.

There is no evidence that he is a eurosceptic from either his words, or especially his deeds. On the contrary, he would sell his own grandmother as long as he can achieve the Prime Ministership.

Lovely dream Christina, but it's really time to wake up, and fight Cameron into power. I absolutely agree with your aims, but the way to fight within the Party against the EU, is to push out europhile candidates and MP's through deselections. Bromley, Battersea for starters. Rushcliffe also. If only Conservatives would fight at Constituency level against the europhiles rather than abndonning the ship to UKIP, who stop eurosceptics getting into Westminster, the arithmetic for Britain's freedom would start to fall into place.

Here's a nice summary of Nulab achievements from LabourHome ...

"I have already admitted, there are major failings of this Labour Government. Delivery on health and education, while impressive, doesn't quite match the massive increase in spending. The tax system is over-complicated. Violent crime is a concern. And the consumer credit levels are frighteningly high (a hangover of Thatcherism). There is also the colossal error in going to war in Iraq, which was, we must remember, fully supported by the Tories."

Cameron Annihilated Bliar today, it's like Bliar has never been away, the ONLY thing he ever goes on about is "Invessstment Invessstment Invessstment", what a pathetic inept creature that man is, im ASHAMED that he is Prime Minister.

Back on topic perhaps - why wouldn't Blair endorse Brown? Perhaps Blair wants his party to win a 4th term, and he knows that the Tories best bet to stop that is Brown in No. 10. Blair, whatever else we think of him, is an astute politician. He knows that his party has a better chance post him without Brown.

As Tories, we should back Brown. He's our best bet to get NuLab out. However, any idea that Brown would take us out of the EU is pure fantasy. It just won't happen. If I believed for a second that it would, he would have my vote despite all his other failings.

And nobody should be in ANY doubt whatsoever, Bliar is working for the EUssr just as much as Bliar, their sole mission is to hand over England to the EU on a plate, i should imagine this "Scottish Raj" were tapped up at some point in the 80's by some faceless EU beaurocrat with a "proposition".

*Bliar is working for the EUssr just as much as Bliar*

*Brown is working for the EUssr just as much as Bliar*

"If only Conservatives would fight at Constituency level against the europhiles rather than abndonning the ship to UKIP, who stop eurosceptics getting into Westminster, the arithmetic for Britain's freedom would start to fall into place." Yes it is so much easier to move the goalposts and shut down the voice of opposition rather than winning the argument for EU withdrawal.

Mark 15.54 has a valid point.

The Celtic nations (largely Nulab territory) like living off handouts, whether from England or EU is irrelevant. Also, in UK they have exalted "victim" status.

Scots and Welshmen can be "nationalists". English are derided as "Little Englanders"

All MSPs are Scottish and white, so what? The Tories have a complex about their MPs being, er, English and white (with a fair few expat Scots).

I digress.

No way will the Celts want to get out of EU. UKIP only have MEPs from England, none from Celtic countries. UKIP really ought to be called EIP. They also go for EVFEL.

"The Celtic nations (largely Nulab territory) like living off handouts, whether from England or EU is irrelevant. Also, in UK they have exalted "victim" status." What an offensive comment, isn't picking a perceived easy target and blaming all Britain's problems on it more of an argument used by the BNP?
Now the Scots are to blame for our continued membership of the EU. This site is going downhill fast!!!

Well, blaming people is not good manners or good politics Anon. However, just how well do UKIP do in Scotland or Wales? (Genuine question, I honestly don't know)

It is right that the PM presents him/herself to the HoC on a regular basis at PMQs to defend the government's record.
As DC once famously pointed out, it was for the opposition parties to put the questions, not the PM.
Why then do we have to go through the timewasting nonsense of allowing a number of sycophantic questions from the government's back benches?
Could not DC propose doing away with this practice?

I am afraid I have heard plenty of rubbish from Ms Speight these last few weeks but the idea that Gordon Brown will take this country out of the EU is farcical. You are simply clutching at straws dear lady.
As I have said before you have no right to comment on the Conservative Party because you have been a traitor to it by joining another party. As its clear that you would rather have Gordon Brown as Prime Minister than our leader that charge is true.
Please dear lady go join the Labour Party and work for the party you apparantly want to return to power. Your no more a Conservative than Tony Benn!

It's the only time some of the Labour backbenchers ever get any publicity David. I presume that's why it's allowed to continue. A do wonder if some sort of reform will be bought in. It's a bit of a broken record at the moment.

Here is Cameron & Bliar at PMQ's today from the Scottish Parliament 'South'.

Small file size 714kb



"... in a vote on the death penalty, the Yes votes were collected in a hat. Then, to balance the injustice whenever an innocent person was executed, a name would be drawn from the Yes hat and executed too – after all, the Yes vote had considered that the occasional dead innocent person was a price worth paying."

That would only make sense if the innocent person who had been executed was part of the group which actually took part in the vote. As that group was small enough for the "yes" votes to be accommodated in a hat, it's unlikely that any of them would ever commmit a murder - even though the murder rate has increased roughly fourfold since the abolition of the death penalty, it's still the case that about 99.95% of the population manage to get through their lives without ever committing a murder. The chance that one of the group would be falsely accused of murder, tried, convicted and executed would be very much lower - even when the death penalty was still in use it was mainly reserved for the worst murderers, and there are very few of those cases where the verdict was questionable.

Personally on a national scale I would prefer to restore the death penalty for the worst murderers, restore whole life sentences for many of the others, and so cut the rates of homicide and attempted homicide back to the levels we had in the 1950's. I would willingly accept the very slim chance that I might be executed unjustly, because that would be enormously outweighed by the reduced chance that I would be killed or maimed by a criminal.

When people talk about the odd innocent person being executed, they seem to forget (or maybe don't know) that abolition of the death penalty has resulted in an extra murder every day, roughly speaking, and so far it has cost the lives of about 7000 victims. Not all entirely innocent victims, but victims nonetheless.

It works out that executing one murderer would prevent about 30 other murders, and even in the extremely unlikely event that as many as one in ten of those executed were in fact innocent, it still means that about 300 (mostly) innocent people would be saved from being murdered, for every person wrongly executed.

"foreign secretaries"...nice one Blair. Beckett wont sleep tonight because she'll think she'll be deported!

The statistics on the effect of the death penalty on the murder rate are all open to question. The murder rate is affected by a wide range of factors. It is quite likely that the murder rate would have increased even if we hadn't abolished the death penalty. Murder rates show similar increases in many countries, including those that still have capital punishment.

An analysis of murder rates in the US shows that states which have the death penalty suffer from a slightly higher murder rate than demographically similar states which do not execute convicted murderers. The difference is too small to be statistically significant but the figures fail to support the idea that the death penalty saves lives. If you ignore demographics, states with capital punishment have a MUCH higher murder rate than those without.

Overall, I think the only valid conclusion from the statistics is that the case is not proven either way. It is possible that the death penalty would reduce the murder rate. It is equally possible that it would make little or no difference.

I am not trying to make a case either way here, just pointing out that statements such as "the abolition of the death penalty has resulted in an extra murder every day" are unproven.

Getting back on topic, it is good to see a clear win for Cameron at PMQs. Blair's performance was awful.

On the way to a local football game a couple of weeks ago, I met a woman in the street who wanted directions to the nearby train station. Out of the kindness of my heart I offered to take her there because it was an awkward route. Discussion went the scenic route round to the death penalty (I think it was a general discussion on crime which deviated...). When I said I supported it, I was given a look of shock! I was about to get a shock too...she was a bloody Lib Dem supporter! She hates the death penalty...I got an earful. The temptation just to abandon her was strong but I resisted...

Well, just to quickly close the off-topic topic, page 2 of this Home Office report has a graph of homicides in England and Wales from 1951 to 2003/4:


The use of the death penalty was suspended from November 1965. Crime in general has risen over that period, but then the punishment of crime in general has been softened. Really the only way to find out if restoring the death penalty as the top anchor point for all sentences would reverse the trend would be to do it, and there are better and more rational grounds for trying that experiment than there were for trying the original experiment of removing the death penalty. But guess what, we can't do that, because of our "international obligations".

David Cameron kicked Blair all over the place. I enjoy seeing this aggressive style at the despatch box. I'm a bit surprised he didn't mention North Korea though.

The support he got from Tory backbenchers was surprising. They took a while warming up, but after that ridiculous opening question from some faceless Labour MP they got into their stride.

My last contribution on the death penalty...

There are too many variables involved to be sure about cause and effect. Even if the homicide rate fell following reintroduction of the death penalty, it does not prove that the death penalty has caused the change. For that you would have to find a way of preventing all other changes in society while you carried out your experiment.

As an example of the difficulty of proving anything, take a look at New York. The murder rate fell when the death penalty was reintroduced in 1995. However, it had been falling since 1990. The rate of decline did not change significantly. In 2004 the death penalty was abolished again. Since then the murder rate has continued to decline. Similarly the murder rate in Kansas failed to show any significant change after the death penalty was reintroduced in 1994, although it has declined significantly since 2000.

These figures do not prove that the death penalty has no effect on the murder rate. It is quite possible that the murder rates in Kansas and New York would be higher if they had not reintroduced capital punishment. It does, however, show that the subject is a lot more complex than reintroducing capital punishment and watching what happens to the murder rate.

It is nice that DC can get some wins at the Dispatch Box, but really I don't think the electorate gives much of a toss. Hague regularly won his weekly jousts with Blair, but it didn't make a jot of difference in the 2001 election. Yes, a victory in a key debate (eg if Blair decided it would be a jolly wheeze to attack Iran or Syria) would be noticed and cared about but anything else is tomorrow's chip paper (or has been written over on the Sky+ box by the Hollyoaks omnibus).

The proposal to pay foreign prisoners to go home is shocking though- not really much difference to the BNP's policy of "generous" financial incentives to "encourage" non-white Western Europeans to repatriate themselves. If such prisoners ought to be deported, then deport them, don't set a precedent for it being OK to pay foreigners to leave.

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