Wednesday, November 23

UKIP show support for the death penalty

In a move that has shocked human rights groups up and down the country the U K Independence Party has this week condemned Britain’s membership of the European Union, as it prevents capital punishment from being carried out on British soil.

Following the murder of PC Sharon Beshenivsky earlier this week in Bradford, UKIP leader Roger Knapman opportunistically used the opportunity to take a swipe at the EU. Knapman said, “At a time when we are faced with what would appear to be an increasing tide of truly horrific crimes, it is right that the subject of the death penalty should be aired in public."

“No matter how horrific the crimes, there is no prospect of the death penalty being re-introduced in the UK unless we first leave the European Union”.

The death penalty is prohibited by Protocol 13 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Also Article 7 of the EU treaty states that action will be taken against member states where there is a ‘clear risk of a human rights breach,’ something which has spared thousands of people from intolerable suffering.


Monday, November 21

UKIP launch hypocritical attack on EU finances

Fresh from its own financial embarrassment following Tom Wise's alleged expenses fraud, UKIP has now hypocritically hit out at the apparent "disgusting" state of the EU's finances.
The European Court of Auditors last week declined to sign off the EU's accounts for the eleventh successive year, after stating that 60% of EU money could be open to fraud.
UKIP chairman Jeffrey Titford MEP said "Personally I would not trust the European Commission, past or present, to look after my grandchildren’s pocket money." All this despite the fact that one of his UKIP colleagues is facing allegations of illegally pocketing £30,000 worth of expenses.
However as Labour's Terry Wynn MEP explained "Only when accountability for EU spending is linked to politicians' reputations will we see detailed accounts of where the money from EU coffers is going. Each country has to take responsibility for its own EU spending."
Unlike Titford who recently blasted his colleagues as "Nerds" for taking time to study the budget, those who care to read it and not selectively pick from it, will see the Court of Auditors' report shows a welcome improvement on the EU's financial management.
There is no doubt there is still a long way to go until every Euro spent, can be accounted for but the improvement we have seen this year are more than could have been hoped for in 12 months.
For the first time the auditors can account for 60% of CAP spending and can highlight those member states where problems exist.

Saturday, November 19

UKIP’s MEPs: always losers…often absent…

UKIP’s MEPs: always losers…often absent…
and nearly always negative

In June 2004 the UK Independence Party won an unprecedented 12 seats in the European Parliament, four times as many as their previous best.
Previously a small fringe party, UKIP benefited from a surge in popularity mainly brought about by the ousted ex TV presenter Robert Kilroy Silk, and a huge cash injection from millionaire businessman Paul Sykes.

UKIP's MEPs came to the European Parliament in July 2004 threatening to "bring it down from the inside". So far during the life of this parliament, UKIP MEPs have had zero political impact, failed to live up to their own expectations, arguably failed to fulfill their responsibilities as elected representatives, and in many cases not even bothered to vote! has monitored the voting behaviour of each UKIP MEP in parliamentary voting sessions in Brussels and Strasbourg over the last 16 months. We have monitored their votes in particular in roll call votes in the Parliament – in such votes there is a record of which way each MEP votes and, of course, which MEPs failed to vote at all.

Overall the UKIP voting record shows that UKIP’s MEPs are not only regularly absent but also that they overwhelmingly vote against nearly everything in front of them, apparently regardless of the substance of the issue.

Our calculations from the official records of the European Parliament show that UKIP’s leader in the European Parliament, Nigel Farage for example, has taken part in only just over half of the roll call votes held on final resolutions adopted by Parliament. But even he was out-done in the non-voting stakes by Yorkshire and Humber MEP Godfrey Bloom, who only took part in 39% of roll call votes. The most diligent UKIP Members proved to be Derek Clark, Gerard Batten and Tom Wise, who participated in just over 80% of votes.

Nevertheless, their comparatively high voting record is less impressive when one considers how they voted.

Out of the 171 votes we monitored, UKIP MEPs voted on average 80% of the time against the issue at stake. Of the mere 78 times UKIP leader Roger Knapman actually voted, for example, on no less than 68 occasions he voted negatively. Seven of his votes were abstentions and three were by secret ballot. Only 3 times did Knapman vote in favour of a proposal. Nigel Farage proved just as unimaginative, voting 74 times against, abstaining 9 times and voting in favour only three times.

Our research reveals that of all the recorded parliamentary votes monitored, UKIP’s MEPs have only once, in 16 months, been on the winning side.

So what has UKIP achieved in Europe?

The answer to this question is of course very little. Although it can be expected that UKIP MEPs will vote against issues which call for further co-operation among EU member states, their voting record shows that they tend to show a blatant disregard not only for British interests but even for humanitarian issues.

UKIP MEPs have abstained on motions to:

• Help the victims of the 2004 Tsunami disaster
• Assist the sisters of murdered Belfast man Robert McCartney, in their fight for justice
• create a single seat for the European Parliament saving the European tax payer €200m a year.

UKIP MEPs have voted against:

• Efforts to manage climate change
• Enlargement of the EU
• Efforts to assist the victims of drought and forest fires in France, Spain and Portugal in the summer of 2005.
• Efforts to reduce road accident deaths
• Efforts to fight organised crime
• Initiatives which allow cities such as Liverpool to hold the title 'capital of culture.'
• Stricter minimum standards for granting or refusing refugee status.
• The conduct of the Iranian regime

So what has UKIP voted in favour of?

One of the few times UKIP MEPs voted in favour of a proposal was when their own leader in the European Parliament Nigel Farage called for the censure of European Commission President José Barroso over an alleged conflict of interest which he believed resulted from a company (owned by Barroso's long time friend, Greek business tycoon Spiros Latsis) receiving state aid.

The motion failed miserably when put before the Parliament. A massive 589 MEPs rejected UKIP's motion, a clear signal that UKIP’s attempt to censure Barroso amounted to nothing more than an opportunistic and disproportionate publicity stunt. Even the likes of Jean Marie Le Pen (who usually votes the same way as UKIP) this time voted against them.

UKIPs voting record speaks for itself. The party whose members were elected in order to defend British interests barely even bother to vote where key European - and British - interests are at stake. It can hardly be said they are doing the job they were elected to do.

Source: European Parliament Minutes

Tuesday, November 15

UKIP candidate faces charges of indecency

The UK Independence Party candidate in the general election for Milton Keynes south west, Stephen Cornwell, has been charged with ten offences of making indecent photographs of children.
Mr Cornwell, who is 46, has already appeared before Milton Keynes magistrates and has been granted unconditional bail to return to court at the end of this month.
His political career had started as a Conservative but soon switched to Liberal Democrats. He once stood for Newport Pagnell Town council as an Independent and was last year's UKIP candidate in the local elections for the town.
In May his house was raided by police and computer equipment seized just three weeks before the general election.
Mr Cornwell was a candidate for the UK Independence Party in Milton Keynes South West and had allegedly stored drafts of his campaign material on his computer alongside the supposed indecent material.

Source: Milton Keynes Today, 15 November 2005

Monday, November 14

MEP misled party and the cash office

Last month the Sunday Telegraph revealed that Tom Wise, who represents the UK Independence Party for the eastern region, told the European Parliament's payments office, that he was paying his parliamentary assistant Lindsay Jenkins £3,000 a month.
In fact his agreement with her was only a sixth of that amount. Now it has emerged that Mr Wise not only misled Jenkins but also misled his party.
The EU payments office in the European Parliament believed it was paying Ms Jenkins directly because on the form submitted to the payments office Mr Wise had inserted one of his own bank account numbers under the name of "Stags" and indicated it belonged to Ms Jenkins.
UKIP leader in the European Parliament Nigel Farage,and founder member of the party, said: "We initially thought that Tom Wise was acting directly as a paying agent but we now understand that was not the case."

Source: Sunday Telegraph 13 Nov 2005

Saturday, November 12

Round up of the mystery of Tom Wise

There are a few questions that need to be answered in regard to the alleged Tom Wise financial misdemeanours. These have arisen due to the varying accounts of what has taken place, as recorded in the Sunday Telegraph and UKIP's own responses.

1. Why is UKIP claiming that Ms Jenkins (Wise's assistant) knew about the entire financial arrangement, when she is claiming she knew nothing about it?

The Telegraph clearly quotes a source: "The sum of £36,000, or anything like it, was never mentioned to her. It was only by accident that she found out there was a lot of extra money being claimed in her name." Presumably this has been published with Ms Jenkins consent.

However, UKIP has made two statements directly contradicting this: "Tom signed a contract with Lindsey Jenkins for £36,000, on the understanding that she would be paid a retainer of £500/month, and the rest for specific research projects as and when" and "With the researcher’s knowledge, the budget was ring-fenced in a company account".

Is the paper lying or mistaken?

2. Did Tom Wise use a personal account or not to claim the money from the European Parliament?

UKIP has stated "It was not held in his personal account", yet the Telegraph reports that "Mr Wise has told UKIP bosses that he invoiced for the money using the term "Tom Wise trading as Stags"". That is how sole trader accounts are titled, and these count entirely as personal accounts.

3. Did Tom Wise lie to UKIP?

The Telegraph made a bold statement that Tom Wise misled the party over how he claimed the money:
"it has emerged that Mr Wise misled his party. In fact the EU payments office believed it was paying Ms Jenkins directly because on the form submitted to the payments office Mr Wise had inserted one of his own bank account numbers under the name of "Stags" and indicated that it belonged to Ms Jenkins. The payments office was also given the contract between Mr Wise and Ms Jenkins in which the same account number had also been inserted next to her name."

And the quote from Nigel Farage appears to support this statement:
Last night Nigel Farage, "a UKIP MEP and founder member of the party, said: 'We initially thought that Tom Wise was acting directly as a paying agent but we now understand that was not the case."

4. Why has Tom returned £21,000 to the European Parliament cash office two months early?

With two months remaining in the financial year, why has Mr Wise pre-emptively paid £21,000 back to the EU? Surely the party realises that paying the money back early makes it look entirely as if he is guilty of deception. Is UKIP so swimming in money that it can afford to waste this amount of money? £21,000 could have been used to pay another researcher for a year.

Source: UKIP, The Sunday Telegraph

Thursday, November 3

UKIP accuses Davis of Plagiarism

UKIP Leader Roger Knapman has accused Conservative leadership contender David Davis of the ‘wholesale plunder’ of UKIP policy, by hijacking the work Knapman carried out as a whip in the Tory Government of the early 1990's.
Knapman said that Mr Davis’ who has recently pledged to hold more referendums on Britain's EU commitments meant that once again the Conservative Party would be using UKIP policy initiatives to bolster its image of Euroscepticism.
Knapman Said “While I am gratified to hear that Mr Davis now wants to undo the provisions of the Maastricht Treaty which he helped to force through, his plan is unworkable."
He went on “It is naive the think that the EU will allow a British [Tory] government to merely grab back the bits of power that it wants while leaving the rest of the structure in place."
Knapman added that this is the second time that Mr Davis had plagiarised UKIP policy, the first being the Conservatives’ much criticised extreme immigration policies in 2004.

Source: UKIP


It might be a contradiction in terms, but this month UKIP MEP for the south west Graham Booth has placed a codicil to his will such that his name will not be "taken in vain after his death", in the hope that he will "die with honour."
In a pathetic display of how UKIP MEPs while away their time in Brussels, apparently fighting for Britian's withdrawal from the EU, Booth has written to the Parliament's President Josep Borrell, demanding that should he die whilst still an MEP, any possible tributes should make no mention of his name in connection to the EU.
On his website, Booth goes on that he would prefer Britain's early withdrawal from the EU in order that he can resign from the Parliament, meaning the codicil be revoked.
If that is to be the case the 65 year old veteran who has his days numbered, better get down to doing some meaningful work in the Parliament.

His letter to the President of the EU Parliament is reproduced below.


Mr Joseph Borrell

President, European Parliament

Dear Mr Borrell,

After the minute silence in plenary on October 12th, marking the sad death of Herr Zimmerling MEP you remarked that he died "in the service of Europe".

Can I please obtain your assurance that should I, or any of my colleagues in the UK Independence Party, pass away whilst still members, you will not make such a comment about us. This is not an epitaph any of us would appreciate.

Yours sincerely,

Graham Booth MEP

Borrell's likely reply:

Graham who?!?

Don't flatter yourself mate.

Wednesday, November 2

Farage and Bloom go state side

Following in the footsteps of Charles and Camilla who this week embarked on a tour of the USA, were the not quite so glamorous UKIP couple of Nigel Farage and Godfrey Bloom.
Unlike most MEPs who usually dedicate this point in the Parliament's calendar to undertake work in their constituencies, Farage and Bloom set off on a jolly to the States where they are set to address the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington.
The trip is intended to drum up support of their anti EU sentiments state side and raise a bit of much needed cash for UKIP.
In the past UKIP have falsely accused the EU of being founded on anti americanist attitudes.
It is expected that in their addresses the infamous UKIP pair will scare monger amongst their audience with issues such as EU co-operation ion areas such as defence and technology as a threat to the USA's position in the world.

Source: Washington Times, November 1 2005