|Does My Brain Look Small In This?|
First of all ministers of the Tory led government told the BBC that they were holding a meeting to discuss the tankers drivers "strike" they said it was not a COBRA meeting, then a little later David Cameron said it was a COBRA meeting. They should make their mind up but it gets worse - much worse!
They then held the "COBRA" meeting (that may not have been a proper COBRA meeting) to discuss and plan for an emergency that actually wasn't an emergency. So why did they hold a COBRA meeting in the first place? Was this the first step of their plan designed to fool the public into thinking there was a real emergency? If it was a real COBRA meeting then why weren't representatives from any of the petroleum industry present? Surely if this meeting really was about planning contingencies during a real tanker drivers strike then people from the petroleum industry, whose expert knowledge would be crucial to help with the planning, should have been present?
When ministers emerged from that sham meeting, the PM and cabinet Minister Francis Maude had already decided to panic the entire nation by talking up a strike that was probably never going to happen deliberately causing mayhem and panic by giving the impression that a strike was imminent, and that everybody should top up with fuel and keep fuel stored in jerry cans in the garage as a "sensible precaution"! This was the start of a whole series of conflicting advice this incompetent Tory government were to give to the public over a few days.
On the first day after Francis Maude made his now infamous comments about jerry cans, David Cameron was asked by the Fire Service union to retract the statement because the advice was wrong and extremely dangerous, Cameron was asked to make a formal statement saying it was dangerous to store fuel, however, Cameron refused to backtrack and as a direct result of the Tory PM's appalling handling of this manufactured crisis, a lady from York decided to decant fuel in her kitchen and managed to set herself alight, she now has 40% burns to her body and is in a critical condition in hospital.
In the end it was down to the unions to try and calm the public and they sensibly ruled out a strike before Easter with a panicking Cameron trying to take the credit by asking them to accept the offer from ACAS to get around the table. Too late it had already been arranged without any input from the prime minister!
When the possibility of a strike first became known, instead of acting swiftly in the national interest as any half decent responsible PM would do by taking action to try and get all parties around the table to avert a strike, he decided instead to try and play hard ball with the unions in order to make himself look big, clever and hard. What we saw last week was the actions of arrogance self interest and deliberately misleading of the public which has been the hallmark of Cameron ever since he assumed office. Here was the government deliberately playing up the remote possibility of a strike and playing politics with peoples lives and as a result of their breathtaking arrogance and incompetence, fights and queues and fuel shortages took hold on garage forecourts all over the country and one woman ended up fighting for her life with 40% burns to her body.
The UK Petroleum Industry Association described fuel crisis as "self-inflicted insanity" in a leaked email to the Department of Energy, and I have to agree with them, what we have seen is government incompetence and manipulation and deliberate misleading of the public on a breathtaking scale, and the gross negligence and a failure in their duty of care towards the nation and it is unforgivable!
However, it doesn't even end there, because of Cameron's panic-mongering creating a run on fuel, our emergency service vehicles are now running low on fuel and just to cap the weeks utter madness, dozy incompetent Cameron has ordered the rules on fuel tanker drivers' hours have been temporarily relaxed to help the transport of supplies to filling stations and this is as a direct result of the panic he and his government *deliberately* caused.
Under EU rules, drivers are limited to nine hours on the road each day, but this has now been raised to 11 hours.I don't suppose it has yet occurred to Cameron that tanker driver hours are limited for a reason and that reason is because they are driving around massive unexploded bombs and they need all their concentration to keep the public, themselves and their loads safe?
It seems ironical that the strike ballot is about safety standards and terms and conditions, not about pay, and also say that shorter delivery deadlines have created a "turn and burn" culture, and now the government have exacerbated the very reason why tanker drivers were threatening to strike in the first place.
You couldn't make all this up really! Especially when you take into consideration that this whole panic was deliberately instigated by David Cameron trying to emulate Margaret Thatcher and Tory MPs were instructed to advise their constituents to stock pile fuel in order to get enough so no one need it which they thought would help shift the blame for their own deliberate panic mongering onto the unions and the Labour party. The Tories were actually playing politics to divert attention away from government incompetence and shift the blame for the crisis onto the unions and the Labour party, it is totally and utterly absurd and probably breaks parliamentary standards.
However, what is really telling is that we have a government prepared to go to any lengths, play any political game at any particular time and make fools of the people in order to cover their own incompetence up over a whole raft of hideous policies and stories; 50p tax reduction for millionaires paid for by a granny tax, secretly introducing VAT on hot food, the destruction of the nations NHS, Cash for access to Cameron, Cash for policy etc, but to deliberately endanger the lives and the smooth running of the country for political gain defies words and beggars belief! This government is not fit to govern and Cameron, Osborne, Clegg, Maude and Lansley et al are not fit to hold high office!
The actions of this government are now coming to the fore and revealing real corruption and spivvery at the very heart of David Cameron's government.
The country is gripped by real crisis entirely of the the government's making, a government who should be doing all it can to protect us, regardless of their narrow party interests, instead they were knowingly putting us at serious risk. If this is the kind of panic and complete muddle they get themselves into over a small threat of a petrol tankers strike, it does not bode well for when this country is faced with real danger from terrorist attack, or another banking collapse? If this happens what is the government going to do? Fall to pieces? Start a panic? Look how long it took Cameron to decide his job was back here and not swanning about on his fifth foreign holiday of last year not having his photo opportunities with a Tuscan waitress when the country was faced with riots, looting, plundering, murder and arson and where peoples homes shops and livelihoods were wantonly being destroyed and pictures of the country burning were being beamed around the world. For days we had absolutely no leadership because the entire cabinet, (even the Deputy PM who is meant to stand in for the PM when he is out of the country) barring Hague who made one statement and then scuttled off to his summer residence and ignored what was going on, were all out of the country at exactly the same time! It took Cameron 3 whole days to return and take charge and when he did eventually return he immediately started to blame the police and everyone else for his own ineptitude and serious serial lack of judgement!
Politics is not a game it affects real people and their lives and last week this government put our lives at serious risk as badly burnt Diane Hill and her family will testify, these are people who have been left in unimaginable pain, suffering and distress because of insane advice deliberately given in order to cause panic by this Conservative government and its Liberal Democrat hanger on poodles.
This government is a serious danger to the public and they need to be replaced as soon as possible before they harm even more of our people, our industry and our economy.
Now is the time for Mr Miliband to show the country that Labour is a credible, sensible alternative. Labour was not to blame for the global economic crisis, even the IMF now admit that and even at the height of 2008 global recession labour's debt was lower than the Tories in 1997 the Conservative government left a deficit of 3.9% and no global crises, in 2007 deficit was 2.1% but exacerbated by a global bank crises here is the proof. - Labour should remind people that Labour handed this country's economy over with 1.1% for just one quarter, falling unemployment and manufacturing doing well despite the worse global recession for over a 100 years and now just 22 months later Osborne has totally ruined the country's economy and we are now in recession again and we need Labour back to sort the mess out - Miliband should not be afraid to show it - it's time for Ed Miliband to step up, he is more of a statesman now than Dodgy Dave Cameron can ever ever hope to be.