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Archive for the ‘Elliot Colburn’ Category

The Death Penalty: Unhelpful, Immoral and Dangerous

In Elliot Colburn on August 1, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Elliot Colburn gives his case against the Death Penalty, which has recently come back into the public spotlight. Read the rest of this entry »

A Survivor’s View Of Depression

In Elliot Colburn on July 27, 2011 at 9:29 pm

Elliot Colburn has been away from the Political Promise scene for some time, but he’s back to tell us his views on depression and his experience with it. Read the rest of this entry »

God Save The Queen: She Might Need It!

In Elliot Colburn on August 23, 2010 at 8:21 am

By Elliot Colburn

Queen Elizabeth II could celebrate her Diamond Jubilee in 2012, marking 60 years as Queen, and could even surpass Queen Victoria as the longest reigning Queen in world history in September 2015 at the age of 89. However, exactly what will happen after the death or abdication of Queen Elizabeth II is unclear. Read the rest of this entry »

Can Australia’s First Sheila Hang On?

In Elliot Colburn on July 18, 2010 at 11:42 am

By Elliot Colburn

Julia Gillard, Australia’s first female Prime Minister, had announced a Federal Election on August 21st. The ALP (Australian Labour Party) unceremoniously ousted its former PM, Kevin Rudd, and replaced him with the somewhat uninspiring Julia Gillard; its popularity has taken a severe blow. The first poll after the election was called shows the ALP on 52% compared to 70% a month ago, and the opposing Liberal Party and coalition parties on 48%. The question many people are asking is if the increasingly unpopular Julia Gillard can hold onto her position as Australia’s first Sheila. Read the rest of this entry »

Clegg’s Debate Victory Means Nothing

In Elliot Colburn on April 16, 2010 at 6:20 pm

Nick Clegg emerged the supposed winner of the first election debate of the 2010 General Election. Whilst not all together surprising that he won – being the bookies favourite – there is a question of why he won. In truth, he only won because he was the only leader who could say what he liked. The Liberal Democrats have always had the ability to say whatever they liked, because they just will not have to put their ideas in practice. The New Labour Era has also been the Liberal Democrat era, but I honestly believe that Lib Dem support peaked in 2005. Their position in the polls would suggest that they would return a very poor set of election results in the upcoming election, whilst UKIP and the Greens are on an unnerving rise of support. The time has come to choose between a Labour government and a Conservative government, and a vote for Clegg and the Liberal Democrats is a waste and a joke.

So why does his victory mean nothing? Well his victory was won on a poll of 4000 voters. Considering that millions of people are eligible to vote in the UK – 4000 isn’t a convincing number. In addition, his victory was taken regardless of party preference. This is similar to the US political climate. Republicans have rigid support for their party, however not even the most right-wing Americans can deny that President Barack Obama is a much better public speaker and debater than John McCain ever was. In addition, Clegg’s ONLY victory was the performance. Conservative Leader David Cameron came top of the polls on all questions asked about the CONTENT of the debate. This includes immigration, crime, education and bureaucracy. As a final thought, all polls taken since the debate still put David Cameron and the Conservative Party as favourites to govern the country – with Clegg and the Liberal Democrats still trailing in third place.

This victory does not mean we are going to have a shock Liberal Democrat government. The Liberal Democrats continue to delude themselves of their chances in the general election. Many are calling Clegg even now, a one trick pony. This was only one of three debates, and I sincerely doubt Clegg will win another. He doesn’t even have the full backing of his party. Tory, Labour and Lib Dem supporters followed the debate, and Clegg’s own supporters believe he performed worse than Cameron and even Brown. This is not surprising however. It is not a secret that the Lib Dems are a divided party – torn between the leadership of Nick Clegg and Vince Cable. The Liberal Democrat manifesto is a farce. After reading all the manifestos, it is clear the Liberal Democrats don’t have any confidence in their own policies and would fall apart if put in a position of governance. They are liars, cheats and name droppers – relying on opponent blunders to improve their own position and have ideas above their station. This victory means nothing – it is being hyped because Nick Clegg is the leader of the ‘third party’. No doubt the Lib Dems will use this rare victory to hype their own campaign, as it is the only thing they have going for them. The Lib Dem position can be summed up by some well-chosen words of Margaret Thatcher’s, “This is an X parrot”.

Elliot Colburn

Burma’s Long Anticipated Election Is Not Worth The Wait

In Elliot Colburn on April 2, 2010 at 9:07 am

Burma has not had an election for 20 years, not since 1990 when the Burmese National League for Defence (NLD) won the election. However, they were never allowed to take power. Now, in the first election in Burma since then, the NLD are boycotting the election. This is as a result of “unjust” electoral laws.

The Leader of the NLD, Aung San Suu Kyi, has been imprisoned for many years for her support of democracy. Under the new laws, anyone with a criminal record cannot run for election. This rules out Aung San Suu Kyi and many activists in the party. Some western citizens would generally agree that criminals shouldn’t be allowed to run for public office, however as Suu Kyi has been imprisoned for her liberal beliefs, this decision has been denounced. It also does nothing to quell international anxiety about Burmese political standards.

The NLD refuse to oust their leader and similarly have refused to take part in the upcoming election that the military has promised this year. This action has been supported by Suu Kyi, and consequently the party has been dubbed illegal. Some commentators believed that if unable to take part, the NLD would reject Suu Kyi, however they so far stand strong behind her. Nevertheless, this may also be a precautionary measure.  On Independence Day in January, Burma’s military leader Than Shwe urged people to make what he called the “correct choices” when elections are held. In reality this means ‘don’t vote NLD or you’ll be killed’.

Well the NLD has now removed that risk, as they are no longer standing, and let’s be honest, even if they stood and won, they wouldn’t be allowed to form the government anyway. The Burmese have lost their hope for democracy, and unless some intervention takes place, either by revolution or international intervention, it’ll never be introduced properly. Suu Kyi will not be leader of Burma this time, and who knows when the next election will take place?

Elliot Colburn

Are we witnessing the beginning of the end of the European Union?

In Elliot Colburn on March 23, 2010 at 11:17 am

Greece; the founders of western democracy, crafters of the Olympic games, and one of the cultural highlights of the globe. However, Greece is now in crisis, a crisis that is not new to the West. The Bank of Greece (aptly abbreviated to BoG) said Greece’s economy is in a “vicious circle” economic output in 2010 will fall by 2%, worse than the government’s prediction of between 1.2% and 1.7%, and will only get worse if the government goes ahead with the controversial cuts. The report comes ahead of a European Union summit, which may discuss Greece’s economic crisis. The quote in full reads “The Greek economy has fallen into a vicious circle with only one-way out: the drastic reduction of the deficit and debt,” the Bank’s annual monetary policy report says.

Germany has irritated some members of the EU with its opposition to any financial aid to help Greece, believing that Athens can solve the problem. This is in contradiction to remarks made by Hungarian President László Sólyom, who claimed the EU should bail out countries such as his own and indeed Greece. German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou on Sunday 21st March that the European Union was ready to “do what is necessary to preserve the stability of the eurozone”. Yet, in a radio interview, she said she opposed any move by EU leaders to take a firm decision on the Greek question at Thursday’s summit, as Greece does not need money at the moment. Nevertheless, it is not just Greece that is facing economic problems. Spain, Portugal, Hungary and Ireland are all facing economic hardship, and the euro seems to be the point of blame.

Last year marked the 10th anniversary of the euro currency, and in the European Parliament, debate was sparked by ex-UKIP leader and now leader of the EU Independence and Democracy (Ind/Dem) Group Nigel Farrage, who stated “I very much doubt you’ll be celebrating the twentieth”. This has carried through to today’s European Commission. Farrage especially has constantly attacked the commission for ignoring the results of the French, Dutch and Irish ‘No’ votes on Lisbon, and in effect agrees with the German Chancellor, believing that the EU should not bail out Greece, the argument being, that it is not for a taxpayer in other European countries to bail out a country that has fallen victim of the “failed” euro project. The euro has come under a lot of pressure, especially in the last year, and now it seems the Ind/Dem Group has a support base, as one of the six founding countries of the EU shares one its views.

Of course it is not just the currency that is being disputed. After ignoring three ‘No’ votes on the Lisbon treaty, electing an EU President who is virtually unknown to the wider population of Europe, and having a totally unelected executive – the entirety of the EU has come into discussion. Opinion Polls in Britain show that if there was a referendum on the EU membership, an overwhelming majority would vote against it (something Farrage is quick to mention in Parliament). Not just in Britain, but also in many member states, especially those in economic hardship, there is a certain nostalgia and unwillingness to belong to the EU. Whilst Turkey may be desperate to join it, one would not be wrong in saying that many are desperate to get out. Perhaps Farrage is right – perhaps there will be no 20th anniversary of the euro, and perhaps the days of the EU itself are numbered?

Elliot Colburn