News

Armaments

The national media has recently reported on some of our major banks continuing to invest in companies that make cluster bombs. Britain is a signatory, along with 107 other countries, to a global treaty banning the production, distribution and transfer of these weapons. These munitions pose an indiscriminate wide-area threat to civilians, and can kill and maim years after they have been deployed.

Regime Change

 After months of military intervention in Libya, there is now some sense of actual regime change inLibya.  It is gratifying and notable that this effort by NATO countries is in accordance with a UN (United Nations) resolution.  Although regime change was not a declared objective, it was clear that the military involvement by other countries was facilitating this outcome.  It is likely that many people will welcome the end of the government led by Colonel Gaddafi.  As always, the big question is what new government will replace the one that has left the stage.  If the likely answer proves to be a concern, this reinforces the need to be careful what we wish for.

Energy Crunch

Thanks to a great deal of brave and committed effort, Britain has enjoyed decades of gas and oil production from theNorth Sea.  I can just about remember my parents’ house supply being converted from town gas to North Sea gas, and the same change happened up and down the country.  Similarly we have enjoyed a plentiful supply of oil, to such an extent, that it was at times suggested that Britain should join the OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries).

Debt Crisis

 It seems like four years ago that we saw the first warnings of an emerging debt crisis.  In theUnited States, there was a growing trend of borrowers defaulting on their mortgages, within what was called the sub-prime lending market.  The debt contagion spread, at first slowly, but then with a vengeance as the banks began to be hit, including a list of famous names.

Debt Crisis

It seems like four years ago that we saw the first warnings of an emerging debt crisis.  In the United States, there was a growing trend of borrowers defaulting on their mortgages, within what was called the sub-prime lending market.  The debt contagion spread, at first slowly, but then with a vengeance as the banks began to be hit, including a list of famous names.

Neighbourhood Parades

 Last week saw the completion of improvement work on Furnace and Ifield Parades.  Crawley Borough Council owns 11 neighbourhood shopping parades and has been proceeding with an improvement programme on all of them.  We have now completed nine, including the major Bewbush and Langley Green neighbourhood centre regeneration projects.  This leaves shopping parades inThreeBridgesand Tilgate as the next pieces of work.  The whole effort was deliberately accelerated by two years during the recession to demonstrate that progress could be made during difficult times.

Options for Change

 It is understandable that we all have different levels of enthusiasm for embarking on programmes of change.  The search for new ideas can be unsettling, and the potential consequences can create a sense of uncertainty and worry.  Questions will be put that range from the slightly “American”, “How can we?” to something perhaps more “British”, “Why can’t we?”.

Crawley Conservatives launch new website

Thank you for your support at the last election. Because of you, David Cameron is the first Conservative Prime Minister in 13 years and the Government’s plans to build a strong economy and a big society are in full swing. Now, to help us communicate with you, we've launched this new local website.

Communication Channels

For politicians, getting our message across at one time involved a limited number of communication channels.  We could try arranging a public meeting and even invite our opponents, and call it a hustings.  In years gone by, the most famous political speakers would attract sizeable audiences.

Pursuit of a Story

 Many of us have been shocked by the allegations surrounding the conduct of national newspapers and international media groups.  I used to attach much less credence to claims about the power of the national media, thinking that many such complaints were from unreasonable vested interested groups, including cabals with the major political parties.  Surely the media were just holding these powerful groupings to account.  There was nothing wrong with that.