Tag Archives: Donal Blaney

Life on Gilligan’s Island (Part 46)

Just because the London Mayoral election ended in May, it doesn’t mean that we here at Nowhere Towers are about to ignore Kennite. He’s still the same hack and as far as we’re concerned, he isn’t going to change anytime soon. Leopards, spots and all that.

The Olympics Opening Ceremony has got many sections of the Right foaming at the mouth. First there was Aidan Burley and his “leftie multicultural crap” tweet, for which we don’t expect him to be censured. Then there was Rick Dewsbury of the Daily Heil with his racist rant, which has been pulled by the paper in the face of a stream of complaints. You can view the offending article here. Both the article and Dewsbury are now the subject of a complaint lodged with the PCC.

The title of Kennite’s blog is “London 2012: how the Olympics suckered the left”. When you read a title like that, you know what to expect.  First he writes,

The London Olympics are the most Right-wing major event in Britain’s modern history. Billions of pounds are taken from poor and middle-income taxpayers and service users to build temples to a corporate and sporting elite. Democratic, grassroots sport is stripped of money to fund the most rarefied sport imaginable. The police and the state are turned into the enforcement arm of Coca-Cola. How did this event suddenly become the toast of the Left?

How is this “the toast of the Left”? He does not say but I think it is fair to suggest that he is referring to the Opening Ceremony and not the games themselves and the criminal enterprise that runs them. But he would be wrong. Furthermore, you can guarantee that when Kennite is talking about the “Left”, he’s referring to Labour and not the rest of the British Left. In the second paragraph, he puts the first boot in.

Corporations who make people fat and sick – or, in one case, actually maimed and killed them – are allowed to launder their images; the London Paralympics, in a detail you simply could not make up, are sponsored by Atos, the firm repeatedly accused of bullying disabled people off benefits. Meanwhile, the main sponsors – the people of Britain – are largely excluded from the event they paid for.

Here he appears to be saying that the Left hasn’t said anything about Atos.  But he would be wrong and if he’d have bothered to do his homework, he’d see that there have been ongoing protests since the government announced that ATOS would be forcing the disabled into work. We are already aware that Atos is sponsoring the Paralympics and we find that distasteful. But to say that the ‘left’ (whoever they are) are doing nothing is little more than left-baiting. Have a look at this article from Nottingham Indymedia. The Socialist Party has also been involved in protests against ATOS. Kennite is talking out of his arse.

Here’s the nub of his hatchet-job,

The Left should be up in arms about the Olympics, as should any democrat. But as it turns out, all it takes is a few nurses dancing round beds, some coloured lights spelling out the words NHS and we all go weak at the knees and collapse into the IOC’s embrace. Worse, actually: any criticism of the opening ceremony was described by one left-wing newspaper today as “extremist!

More dishonesty.  The “left-wing” newspaper to which he refers, one suspects, is The Guardian. The “extremist” in question is Nazi Boy Burley. Thus far, Kennite has been quiet about him but then we don’t really expect him to say anything. He’s more than happy to excuse racists. After all, enough of them form his core readership. To support his ‘case’, he writes,

My favourite line was from the Guardian columnist Richard Williams who wrote: “Cameron and his gang will surely not dare to continue the dismemberment of the NHS after this.” Hmm. If dismemberment is indeed their intention, are they really going to be stopped by a sound and light show? This isn’t a new dawn for Britain. It’s a night’s entertainment.

Is this the only ‘Leftist’ he could find? If so, it’s a pretty poor example.

Here’s what the Socialist Party said about The Olympics in Socialism Today,

IT ALL BEGAN with a lie: that the London Games would cost £2.4 billion. That figure was never credible. Inexplicably, it did not include VAT or security expenditure. With these costs added, the bill would have totalled £3.9 billion – 20% VAT on £2.4 billion equals £480,000, plus the wildly out-of-control spending on security, around £1 billion. So far, however, the elastic Olympics budget has been stretched to £9.3 billion. It all adds up to a massive swindle, a rip-off for working-class and middle-class people who stump up the most in direct and indirect taxes.

The government (via taxpayers) is paying £6.2 billion of that, the rest coming from the lottery (an indirect tax on the poorest). Despite assurances that the private sector would part-fund the major construction projects on which the Games depend, the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee, reckoned that less than 2% of the Olympics budget has come from private funding. (Guardian, 17 July 2008)

The London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (Locog), the body in charge of ‘delivering’ the Games, has raised another £2.1 billion to stage the show. Two-thirds of this has come from sponsorship by big business – whose profits come from exploiting workers and consumers. Locog also gets a contribution from the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The rest is from ticket and merchandising sales – again, mainly out of our pockets. Locog is headed by Lord Sebastian Coe, a former gold-medal-winning athlete, former Tory MP, a ‘world ambassador’ for Nike sportswear, and multi-millionaire.

The Olympics have “suckered the Left”? The Socialist Workers Party has also attacked the games as well as organizing protests against missile batteries being sited on top of blocks of flats. This is from June’s Socialist Worker.

London march against corporate takeover

Activists were set to march through east London on Saturday of this week in protest at the corporate Olympics. The march is taking place under the slogan “No Limos, No Logos, No Launchers”

This refers to the controversial Games Lanes, the Olympics’ corporate sponsorship and the missiles stationed on blocks of flats in east London.

It is organised by umbrella group the Counter Olympics Network. After the march there will be speakers from some of the 50 or so campaigns that support the protest, including War on Want, Defend the Right to Protest and several London trades councils.

The local council has tried to ban such “anti-Olympics speeches”. But the protesters were set to launch a legal appeal as Socialist Worker went to press.

Counter Olympics Network supporter Julian Cheyne said, “The Olympics have turned into a corporate festival. To stand by silently would imply we consent to this—and we do not.”

The march assembles at 12 noon on Saturday 28 July at Mile End Park, London E3.

Even the tiny Revolutionary Communist Group has attacked the games.

Gilligoon penned an earlier blog about the Olympics about which he says,

I’ve also had disappointingly few hate emails and tweets after my mixed review yesterday of the great event.

Hate mail is the way he measures his effect on others.  Here’s what he said in the previous blog.

Some of the rest was bitty and disjointed; the sub-mobile-phone advert style of the digital section was particularly weak. It was more political than I expected. Voldemort loomed over the NHS. Tonight marked perhaps its final transformation from a healthcare system into a religion. Dancers made up the CND symbol. The Royal Family looked bored, but the new Right-On Royal Family – Doreen Lawrence and Shami Chakrabarti – got to carry the Olympic flag.

My bold. Why shouldn’t Doreen Lawrence carry the Olympic flag? I’m beginning to suspect that Kennite has some rather questionable views on the subject of Stephen Lawrence’s murder.  But there’s something else: Doreen Lawrence is no fan of Boris Johnson who, as we all know, is Kennite’s other employer. I found this on Iain Dale’s Diary from August 2007.

Andrew Gilligan shares my views on Doreen Lawrence’s disgraceful attack on Boris Johnson. I listened to an appalling half hour’s phone-in on Radio 5 last night, where Simon Woolley from Operation Black Vote demeaned himself and his position by what he said about Boris. Normally Simon is quite sensible and has done a lot to encourage ethnic minorities to take part in the political process, but last night he embarrassed himself. This is what Andrew Gilligan had to say in today’s Evening Standard

Before the 2008 London mayoral election, Lawrence said that Johnson would not be good for London because of his predilection for casual racism. Dale, like Gilligoon, is quite prepared to look past Johnson’s evident issues with the Other. Dale also links to the dodgy Donal Blaney, he of the YBF. Unfortunately the link seems to be dead. However it is safe to say that Blaney has form when it comes to race. In one blog, Blaney says,

Racist. Fascist. Disabled. Abused. Poor.

All seemingly powerful words – but, alas, no longer. Why? Because they are devalued by their overuse and their misapplication, particularly by leftists.

Dishonesty abounds. The simple truth is that racists like Blaney and the others don’t like to be called on their racism. Furthermore the idea that there are disabled and poor people in the country rankles them; they’d rather content themselves with illusions. Dale, Blaney and Gilligan will never know what it’s like to be abused for the colour of their skin. Instead, they try to play the victim and invert the relations of power to suit their victimhood.

Kennite: he always adds a little sugar to his poison.

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Nightmare on King Street (Part 1)

Don’t worry I’ll be real gentle 

As you may have noticed I’ve decided to start a new series. To be honest with you, dear readers, I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of it earlier. But if I had started this series earlier, I may well be on my way to Part 90 by now. So why “King Street”? Well, for those of you who don’t know Hammersmith & Fulham, that’s where you’ll find the Town Hall, which is run by a team of Tory slashers. They’re the local government equivalent of a gang of Freddie Kruegers and they’re gonna cut you up.

The Tories are an undemocratic party. I think we can all agree on that – unless, of course, you’re a Tory or one of those UKIPers who still carries a torch for the Conservatives on the sly. I’m willing to bet that Farage and Pearson carry a picture of Thatcher in their wallets.

Naturally there are those Tories who would demand “Well, what about Labour”?  What about them indeed. But I’m talking about Tories here and their track record for creating legislation that limits the means by which people and political parties can oppose them.

I’m also talking about the horror show that is Tory-controlled Hammersmith & Fulham, with its gore fest of cuts and closures dressed up as ‘savings’. It’s a slasher film like no other and it’s happening right now.

This is from Shepherds Bush blog and it remind us of how the opposition is routinely silenced by the Tory diktators of this burgh.  It also reminds us how smears are constructed not, in this case, from myths – which are also constructed – but out of pure lies.

The local partei’s (yes, the misspelling is entirely deliberate) defence, if you call it one, is to claim that the Labour opposition don’t show up to meetings and therefore, aren’t worth £164, 340 a year. This is a very dishonest argument and it’s based entirely on the false premise that the opposition are actually permitted to oppose. Having attended the the Council meeting last January when the Tories voted to close the Sand End Centre, The Irish Centre, Shepherd’s Bush Village Hall and other community spaces, I can testify to the effect that Cllr. Greenhalgh repeatedly became petulant whenever Cllr Cowan demanded answers to his questions.   In a democracy, a question is supposed to be met with an answer, not  a brick wall. This is what happens in dictatorships. Ja?  Has Hammersmith & Fulham now become the template for a future one-party English state?

This is what Cllr. Andrew Johnson said in his blog on the laughably named Residents First.

But recently a worrying trend is starting to develop within Hammersmith & Fulham. For it seems despite pocketing not insignificant sums of money, that senior members of the opposition are not bothering to show up to critical meetings or hold the council to account. Failing, for example, to attend key meetings, such as Cabinet when important decisions are being taken, or even recently by failing to table amendments to the Council’s budget as it was being discussed at scrutiny meetings.

Foghorn Phibbs tried this schtick last year. This time his colleague puts forward what appears prima facie to be a pure economic case but it’s bogus.

Towards the end of the blog there’s a number for your Tory bingo card. Eyes down for a full house!

Often it’s all too easy to criticise without having a credible alternative in place, yet our opposition are not even doing this.

It’s poison. The opposition don’t get to ask questions, let alone criticise Tory policies.

But what do you expect from a local branch of the Conservative Party that has nurtured such talents as Aidan Burley and Donal Blaney? This is a democracy? Get a grip.

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Beyond fetishes? Union-bashing, Tories, Nazis and Aidan Burley

When it comes to truly barking right wing politicians, Hammersmith & Fulham knows how to produce them. In recent years it has churned out quite a crop of nutty right wingers, whose ‘philosophies’  intersect rather neatly with those of the far right.  While making a casual online search for updates on Aidan Burley… you know, he of the embarrassing Nazi incident, I came across this website.

After last month’s massive strike, Burley got the notion into his wee noodle to set up his own think-tank dedicated to smearing the trade unions.  He’s done this with the apparent blessing of Lord Snooty. The site’s “About Us” page says,

We campaign for reform of the laws and funding arrangements relating to trade unions. We do not oppose trade unions right to exist and to campaign on issues which are important to them. However, we do not believe that the hard pressed tax payer should be forced to pay for their campaigns either directly or indirectly. Furthermore, we believe that when trade unions take action which affects the wider public it should have a greater element of democratic legitimacy.

Burley has deliberately failed to spot the glaringly obvious: his party is funded by unaccountable millionaires and billionaires, none of whom are elected or accountable to anyone but themselves. 22 millionaires currently sit at the cabinet table. On the other hand, union leaders are elected by their members  and are accountable to their electors. Naturally we cannot expect someone of Burley’s character to understand something so simple. Let’s read on,

We provide quality research into trade union related affairs which highlight these issues. We welcome engagement from trade unionists, taxpayers, users of public services and the media who wish to engage with us. We are happy to provide media spokesmen or speakers for debates and public fora on these issues.

So, this this is a think-tank that’s also a union-busting service? It sounds like it. I’m not taken in by this promise of “quality research” either but then, dear readers, you wouldn’t expect me to be.

This organisation is run on a voluntary basis by people who work in both the public and private sectors, outside of their normal work hours. Just as trade unions should be.

I wonder who these volunteers are? More importantly, his view of unions appears to be a little, er, lopsided. How many of his fellow MPs are engaged on private business when they should be working on Commons business? Hmmmm? What about those expenses? The moats, the duck houses?

Helping Burley in his quest to further smash what’s left of Britain’s trade union movement is Harry Cole, Guido’s ‘news editor’.

The Tories are often quick enough to tell us how they loathe Nazis and, more recently, have been equally as quick to claim that Nazis were “socialists” because the word “Socialist” forms part of their name. In their haste to rush to such an untidy conclusion, they have ignored one rather important fact: Germany’s conservative Centre Party handed Hitler power of their own volition. Indeed, the German conservatives had many things in common with the Nazis: nationalism, law and order, crushing workers movements. Far from being supportive of trade unions, the Nazis saw them as enemies and banned them. I would wager that if Burley and other Tories had their way, they would doubtlessly follow the same path. Of course I am not saying that the Conservative Party is a Nazi party or a Nazi sympathizing party. That would be puerile.  Eh, Dan? But clearly there are individual members of the party who venerate Hitler and his vile party and we shouldn’t ignore this. After all, how many Labourites fetishize Stalin or Ceaucescu?

So it comes as no surprise to me that a young Tory, who was once a H&F councillor, should be seen associating with Nazi fetishists. His predecessor at H&F Council, Donal Blaney, made clear his thoughts about access to social housing that could have, quite easily, been spoken by a Nazi.

The Guardian said,

Conservative Central Office confirmed yesterday that it has opened an inquiry following a complaint from the Commission for Racial Equality about the Fulham Homes for Fulham People campaign led by Tory councillors Donal Blaney and Greg Hands.

One leaflet accused the London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham of denying a council house to a “local mum” whose place had been taken by “asylum seekers”.

The name Greg Hands should be familiar to most readers, he is now the MP for the newly created constituency of Fulham and Chelsea. Hands is an arch-Thatcherite, who was once the leader of the opposition Tory group before he was selected to stand for the old Hammersmith & Fulham constituency. He has also recently addressed the Young Britons Foundation.

In the week before Christmas, Burley apologised and was then promptly sacked from his position as Justine Greening’s PPS. According to the Daily Mail, Burley had even hired an SS uniform,

This veneration of the Nazis and their iconography is nothing new. Other Tories have been there before. The most notable example was the racist boor and self-styled rake, Alan Clark who, according to Socialist Unity, took the BNP’s John Tyndall out to lunch. That’s the same BNP that Hannan claims is “left-wing”.

Socialist Unity quoted this from one of Clark’s diaries,

‘Lunched with Frank Johnson [parliamentary sketch writer on The Times]. Frank pretended he wanted to talk about the Tory Party, but he really prefers to talk about the Nazis, concerning whom he is curious, but not, of course, sympathetic. Yes, I told him, I was a Nazi, I really believed it to be the ideal system, and that it was a disaster for the Anglo-Saxon races and for the world that it was extinguished. He both gulped and grinned, ‘But surely, er, you mean ideally in terms of administrative and economic policy you cannot really, er …’ Oh yes, I told him, I was completely committed to the whole philosophy. The blood and the violence was an essential ingredient of its strength, the heroic tradition of cruelty every bit as powerful and a thousand times more ancient than the Judaeo-Christian ethic.

The disgraced former MP, Neil Hamilton once made a Nazi salute while on a trip to Berlin in 1983.

The buffoonish image cultivated by Mr Hamilton in public has managed to gloss over his extreme views. Born in 1947 in a small Welsh mining town, he was a leading light in the Federation of Conservative Students and the ultra right at the university of Aberystwyth. A 1979 election flyer in Bradford, where Mr Hamilton was standing as Conservative candidate, espoused “coloured” repatriation, as did a speech to the Tory selection committee at the same time.

Oh yes, the FCS, I remember them and so does Craig Murray. The FCS is the predecessor of the YBF. Hamilton has recently joined UKIP.

I have previously quoted this blog from Dissembling Dan Hannan in which he claims that the BNP are a party of the “far left”.  His thesis looks even shakier now.

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H&F Tories and the right-wing ‘madrasah’

It’s called the Tory “madrasah” and it resembles an updated version of the long-defunct Federation of Conservative Students. The Young Britons’ Foundation (YBF), who are no less right-wing than their recent ancestors, was formed in 2003 as sort of boot camp for young right-wing activists. We’ll return to them in a moment.

The use of the word “madrasah” to describe them is a bit weird. But first let’s have a look the word.  Madrasah, or madarasa, is the Arabic word for school; any school. Some are attached to mosques and exist to provide religious education.  Others, particularly those in Pakistan, have been cited as hothouses for suicide bombers. But this is a new connotation and the word, when it is uttered by a Rightist, tends to take on a universal character. The suggestion is “madrasahs are responsible for the inculcation of Islamist terror”.  Is the use of the word “madrasah” ironic in the context of the YBF? Who knows? It has probably been appropriated in much the same way as the word “Mecca” or perhaps the word, “Kosher”. No doubt these people believe that they are the ideologically pure shock troops of today’s Tory party.

The YBF were in the headlines last year. Before the general election, Cameron was urged to distance himself from them. The Guardian said,

Asked about his links to the group last month, Cameron said: “I don’t know anything about the Young Britons’ Foundation.” But Cameron had already contributed to a YBF-branded guide to essential reading for young Conservatives, according to the YBF’s chief executive, Donal Blaney, a Kent-based solicitor.

Hmmm, “He doesn’t know anything about “Young Britons’ Foundation”. I’m not so sure I believe Disco Dave.  The Guardian

…has also obtained photographs of him meeting the organisation’s director of strategy, vice-president, and then operations director before he denied knowledge of the group. Its director of research, Alex Deane, was formerly Cameron’s chief of staff.

Wow! I want to see these photos. But I can’t. I presume they’re in the Guardian’s image vault underneath Farringdon Station. No matter, we can see this screen grab of Cameron meeting someone called Conor Burns. From the Gaurdian,

Ah, doesn’t that look cosy? Burns is now the MP for Bournemouth West but last year he was the YBF’s vice president.

Back in 2003, when the YBF was formed, Tom Happold of the Guardian wrote this about them

A new right-wing youth organisation – the Young Britons’ Foundation – has been accused of plotting a “Militant-style” take-over of the party’s youth wing, Conservative Future, by senior Tories.Disquiet about the group is such that the Conservative’s chief whip, David Maclean, recently told its chairman, former Tory MP Patrick Nicholls, to rein in its activities, Guardian Unlimited has learned.

The foundation’s website claims it exists to “help develop the talents of the young conservative-inclined political activists”, but senior Tories say it has been infiltrating Conservative Future, and even running a slate in its recent elections.

Further down the article we come to this,

The founder of the Young Britons’ Foundation, Donal Blaney, is also a controversial figure in the Tory party – he faced accusations of racism, and a complaint by the Commission for Racial Equality, when he ran a Fulham Homes for Fulham People campaign while a councillor in the borough. But Mr Blaney does have some influential friends; the foundation’s parliamentary counsel contains the former Conservative party chairman, Cecil Parkinson, Tory MP Gerald Howarth and shadow deputy prime minister, and likely future leadership contender, David Davis.

Yes, Donal Blaney was a Hammersmith & Fulham councillor. These days he’s described as a “Kent-based solicitor”.  Here’s some more,

Mr Blaney told Guardian Unlimited that it is compiling a dossier cataloguing examples of “socialist PC” bias on every course on every campus in the country. And he insisted that “all the stuff that gets fed back to us shows that the bias on campus is getting worse”.

The foundation’s website also says: “Leftists and their failed socialist ideology have run riot, in some cases literally, at campuses up and down the land for over 30 years.

“As a result non-political students or students who are conservative in outlook have been discriminated against in their grades and in their treatment by the authorities.”

They get this idea from an American neo-con site called Campus Watch, which claims that it is “monitoring Middle East studies on campus”. Long before it narrowed its remit it was involved in “exposing left-wing bias on campus”. My, how times have changed. The site is connected to the notorious Daniel Pipes, who runs the Middle East Forum.

Back to Blaney. It would seem that even some  Tories don’t like him. This blogger writes,

I guess Donal is the epitomy of all the negative coverage that political blogs have been receiving recently. Rejected by the higher echelons of the Conservative party, this sad time-wasting individual has risen to the delusional ‘heights’ he has by who he knows, not what he knows. ‘Fulham Homes for Fulham People’ is not a message that Cameron wants his conservatives spreading. Then again, perhaps his reluctance to get involved more practically and constructively with the Conservative party  is because Blaney might have certain individuals on his YBF Advisory Panel with an ever so slightly more colourful past that he’d hoped for. Who’s to say though; we wouldn’t want a mere student at the University of York becoming embroiled in a legal battle with blogging’s biggest bumbling bully, Donal Blaney, would we?

He was apparently threatened with legal action by Blaney. Unfortunately for this blogger, the YBF is now firmly entrenched in Hammersmith & Fulham.  More on that later. Blaney had this slogan “Fulham Homes for Fulham People”. His supporters have tried in vain to defend Blaney, but somehow it all looks futile and any attempt to explain it away looks pathetic and feeble.

The comments on Iain Dale’s blog from last February are particularly interesting,

At February 09, 2010 9:29 AM , Blogger DespairingLiberal said…Quite funny that if you Google Donal Blaney, the first image that comes up is him standing in front of a swastika flag.

I can’t help but wonder Iain why you are so drawn to Blaney, who seems to be a sort of neo-BNP’er inside the ranks of the tory party. I thought you yourself were a bit more centrist than that?

Dale replies,

That image of Blaney was photoshopped by a Labour blogger.

Donal is a good friend of mine. There’s nothing BNP about him at all.

Dale is not only a good friend of Blaney, he’s a supporter of the YBF too.

Blaney makes a few comments below.  Here he says,

Despairing Liberal – thanks for putting your head above the parapet. Anonymous abuse on the internet is easy to defeat now thanks to the case of Blaney v Person(s) Unknown in which I obtained a world first order allowing for such cyberbullies to be unmasked and served via Twitter (giving rise to what is known as a Blaney’s Blarney Order). Oh look, another victory.

He’s a card. Isn’t he? A tussle develops between “Despairing Liberal” and Blaney and ends with Blaney threatening legal action. This isn’t the first time that Blaney’s resorted to this tactic. Remember that article that I linked to at the beginning of this blog? Well, it has this at the top of it

The following note was added on Tuesday 9 March 2010

This article is the subject of a legal complaint made on behalf of Donal Blaney.

I guess being a solicitor has its advantages. No?

Blaney divides his time between his practice in Kent and Florida where he is a member of FABB (geddit?), the Florida Association of British Business. He is described as a “British Attorney”.

Last year, James Delingpole penned this tribute to Blaney and the YBF,

I’ve noticed this same technique much in use in the student-rag left-liberal blogosphere, of late, over the small matter of the Young Britons Foundation. Because  the YBF’s splendid, funny and ideologically sound chairman Donal Blaney has called his organisation a “madrassa” for young conservatives,

He misspelled “madrasah”. It was actually Dale who described the YBF as a “madrassa” by the way. More drivel from Delingtroll,

I addressed the YBF in the Commons last week, and extremist is the very last word I’d use to describe them. “Not nearly extremist enough” would be my preferred definition of these pallid young politicos. These kids have been so effectively brainwashed by the propaganda of socialists like Ken Livingstone, Tony Benn, Ken Clarke, Dave Cameron et al, they actually think “progressive” means something worthwhile and that “investment” is what you do when you squander money you haven’t got on the least efficient healthcare system in the known universe.

I’m rolling my eyes here.

Here is the “About Us” page of the YBF’s website,

The Young Britons’ Foundation was co-founded in July 2003 by Donal Blaney, Greg Smith and Ben Pickering

Is that the same Greg Smith who’s a H&F councillor? It certainly is. Smith is the “Cabinet Member for Residents Services”. Cllr Smith is also the YBF’s “Director of Campaigns”. The blurb also tells us that he’s on the executive of the Thatcherite Conservative Way Forward. Though the site doesn’t list him as a member of the executive. Confused? So am I.

On the Advisory Board’s page we find Cllr. Mark Loveday,

Mark Loveday is a barrister specialising in property, local government and professional negligence law in London. A graduate of the University of Kent at Canterbury, Mark is a former intern at the Leadership Institute and a former White House staffer. He is a member of the Cabinet in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham – where he has helped oversee two successive cuts in council tax since the Conservatives regained control of the Town Hall in 2006.

He’s “former White House staffer”. Fine. He’s also the “Chief Whip and Cabinet Member for Strategy” for the Tory group on the council. Like some of the others, I suspect he has his eye on a safe seat. He’s in good company. If you look down the list, you can see many other well-connected names like Matthew Elliot of the “non-partisan” Taxpayers Alliance and Thatcherite economist, Patrick Minford.

Not only is Hammersmith & Fulham a test bed for awful ideas, it is also a training ground for kamikaze Tories.

Back to the Staff page and we see that our old friend, Dan Hannan is the President.  It says,

Daniel Hannan is the President of the Young Britons’ Foundation and has recently been ranked tenth by The Daily Telegraph in its annual poll of most influential centre-right figures in Britain.

Like all those other members of the YBF that we’ve encountered, Hannan does not qualify as a youth. He’s is no spring chicken. In fact, he’s pushing 40. He’s more of a middle-aged man trying to relive his youth.

Here’s the YBF’s Speakers Panel. Do you  recognize any names? I do. Author, old duffer and ardent Europhobe, Frederick Forsyth is a keynote speaker. Previous speakers have included new peer and former MP, Howard Flight, who infamously claimed that the government’s benefit cuts would “encourage poor people to breed more”.  Douglas Carswell and Andrew Rosindell, who was once a member of the notorious Monday Club before IDS forced him  to resign, are also speakers. Carswell is a notorious Randist, like his friend Dan Hannan.Others on the speakers panel include the ever-shrill Douglas Murray and Anthony Worrall-Thompson. Nowhere Towers is baffled by the latter’s inclusion. We knew he was a Tory but is he a policy-former? No.

I expect the YBF to be at the Rally Against Debt next month along with the usual suspects.

For a more complete list of who is involved in the YBF, look at this page.

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