THE police in West Yorkshire are quite right to clamp down on scrap metal thieves who are making peoples lives a misery, but let’s not forget there are many responsible traders and that the scrap metal industry in England and Wales plays a vital contribution in the green economy with the collection, processing, exportation and recycling of all scrap metals.
This includes recycling and recovering 15 million tonnes of metal each year into vital secondary materials which reduces the demand on new resources and energy contributes an estimated £5.6 billion to the UK economy.
REGARDING the schoolboy who copied the Coronation Street murder – the headlines in national newspapers last week.
Like many I enjoy the soaps and over the years they have become more violent and depict the worst side of human nature. The viewing times are early evening and they are hardly fit for children to watch.
The soaps are purely fictional but show scenes which are boosted up to get the ratings up.
Once again these soaps should be shown after the watershed time if they are going to show disturbing scenes.
Pie in the sky idea
I AM intrigued and interested in the proposal being promoted by the local Conservatives to spilt Kirklees and how this suggestion might address the financial problems we all face.
The Government has emphatically stated that there is no intention of finance to split Kirklees, so the local Conservatives must have dreamt up this idea for other reasons.
If this pie in the sky idea should ever become reality then the message in the Conservative leaflets should tell the whole story.
It’s not so much a split rather a merger with Calderdale.
What on earth will then benefit from decisions being made in Halifax instead of Dewsbury?
The real desire of local people is to have control over their own decision making.
A far better idea would be to devolve decision-making to local wards or local areas like the old Colne Valley Urban District Council.
In this way local elected councillors will have a direct contact with the area they represent and this would have no cost to Kirklees at all.
John A Dobson
Democracy at home
IT seems to me that democracy lies within national frontiers, both lingual and cultural.
If it goes beyond these frontiers it becomes a mockery of democracy – and the EU is a fine example of this mockery.
For example, it was not Germany who was to blame for the Second World War – it was the Nazis. Thus, from 1945 there was the official deNazification of that country by the Allies and democracy was forced upon the three western sectors.
But cast a mind back a few years before 1945 and you’ll realise that Germany had done something quite similar before and that was known as the First World War.
I can count on one finger the Nazi in that war and he did not rise above the rank of corporal.
At her present time and with the help of other European Union countries Germany is again domineering European countries such as Greece, but in a more devious way than Hitler or Kaiser Bill but financially with Frau Merkel adding the feminine touch to the proceedings.
That leads us to the mockery of democracy within our own frontiers in the form of the Tories and their backers and Labour’s Unions and backers and I would not like to guess who is backing the naive Liberal Democrats financially or otherwise.
The only losers in this mockery are the hardworking people who have lost their right to work because of globalisation brought upon this country by those elected to look after the interests of those who put them in the position of trust they abuse.
This was proved in Bradford on Thursday, March 29, 2012.
Only 50% turned out to vote and George Galloway with due respect has a fluke win, voted into office by the minorities vote.
The established parties have almost killed off any popular nationalism.
Economic blame game
There has been much correspondence regarding who is or is not responsible for the dire straits of the UK economy.
The Tories, the press, the media (and several letter writers to this newspaper) seem hell bent in talking us into doom and gloom by peddling the story that Labour overspent and caused the problem.
When historians and economists look back at the facts and figures of this period they will discover that we haven’t been measuring like for like as we should have been using percentages or ratios.
It’s understandable that the UK will have what looks like a higher debt in pound or dollar terms as it’s the sixth biggest economy and it will look higher than a country that has the 26th largest economy.
The International Monetary Fund has confirmed that the UK never had the biggest deficit and the Labour government did not overspend. As the facts below illustrate so well, it was the financial crisis that caused the problems.
With fewer businesses and employees paying tax, revenues dropped and then, as unemployment rose, welfare payments went up so more had to be borrowed to make up the shortfall.
When the financial crisis hit in 2008 the debt levels of all countries rose but the UK saw debt increase more quickly than most because its large financial services industry was in ruins and the Labour Government stepped in.
The deficit was on its way down in 2006. The loss of tax revenue, the cost of bank bail-outs and the sudden economic change caused the steep rises of the last three years.
Just a few facts. In 1979 a National Debt of 44% of GDP became 42% in 1997 – cut by only 2% in 18 Tory years – apart from all those other economic problems around with interest rates that went through the roof.
In 1997 a National Debt of 42% of GDP became 35% in 2007 – a cut of 7% in 10 Labour years. After that Labour had no choice but to bail-out the banks and we have been paying for it ever since.
According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development survey in 2008 UK’s debt, as a percentage of GDP was second lowest in all the G8 countries.
So can we finally bury the story that the Brown government ‘maxed out the credit card’?
The increase in the debt to GDP was as a result of the debt created by the financial sector – aka the City of London.
Human cost of caring
AT Easter many of us head off for well-earned breaks but spare a thought for the thousands of carers around the UK who are most likely going nowhere.
Did you know that our own research shows that a great many carers don’t realise they are carers at all?
I wonder how many of your readers are carers without realising it? Maybe they are looking after a family member who is disabled, ill or elderly. If so, then they are carers.
What’s worse, our research also shows that many family carers are completely unaware of the support services available to them, such as funding for people with disabilities and carers to take much-needed respite breaks.
I work for a disability charity called Vitalise and we have seen at first hand the terrible emotional and physical toll that caring for a loved one can take on a person if they don’t have adequate support.
Many carers run the risk of becoming sick or disabled themselves.
Each year we provide desperately-needed breaks for thousands of people with disabilities and carers at our UK respite centres.
It is simply tragic that there are still people in desperate need of respite from their caring role who are completely unaware that we are here to support them.
We think that more needs to be done to reach out to this army of invisible carers across the UK, since without the escape valve of regular time off from caring we know only too well the bleak future they might end up facing.
If you or someone you care about is affected by disability and you would like to know more about how Vitalise can support you, please call 0303 303 0145 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.vitalise.org.uk.
I SHALL miss the weekly column by John Avison.
He was an indispensable member of the Examiner team of writers.
One could always be sure of interesting topics, written in faultless English. He would never be guilty of writing ‘laying on the beach’ instead of ‘lying’ (we are not American and too many people make this mistake) or even mention of a man who’s been ‘stood’ (I wonder who lifted him up and placed him there?).
Elsie M. Eva
Don’t they ever learn?
THE councillors in their wisdom have said that it’s cheaper to renovate the flats than to pull them down as they have to get rid of the asbestos that is already in the building.
Well to my mind won’t they have to remove any asbestos before its safe for anyone to reside there?
And how long will it be for anyone who is living in the flats to put in a claim against the council for catching one of the numerous diseases associated with coming in to contact with asbestos?
It took several years for them to clean up the two tower blocks at Berry Brow, namely Holme Park and Bishops Court, with the same problem – don’t they ever learn?
An alternative would be to build social housing on the site of the Turnbridge estate which, I believe, is still owned by the council but used as a car park. It’s central to town and could become a thriving community again like it once was.
Now that would be money well spent and get my vote, I wonder how many folk in Huddersfield think the same.