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By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 9:19 am

You couldn’t really make it up;

Former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn was taken into custody for questioning over allegations of a prostitution ring operating out of the northern French city of Lille and reaching as far as Washington, putting the onetime French presidential hopeful back into a harsh international spotlight. Mr. Strauss-Kahn presented himself at the police station at 9 a.m. Tuesday, said a spokeswoman at the Lille prosecutor’s office. He is being questioned with regard to an investigation for “complicity in a prostitution network” and “aiding and abetting in the misappropriation of company assets,” she said.

What to say? I’m just surprised Mr Strauss-Kahn found the time to run the IMF. Naturally he remains innocent until proven guilty but following his rape acquittal, he does seem to find a lot of trouble.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 9:14 am

Well, Iran is clear enough on what it will do.

“Our strategy now is that if we feel our enemies want to endanger Iran’s national interests, and want to decide to do that, we will act without waiting for their actions,” Mohammad Hejazi told the Fars news agency, NBC News reported. Iran announced air defence war games to practice protecting nuclear and other sensitive sites, the latest in a series of military maneuvers viewed as a message to the West that Iran is prepared both to defend itself against an armed strike and to retaliate.

In essence, this means a pre-emptive attack on Israel. Soon, very soon, the price of years of indecision on this issue will blow up in all our faces. Iran wants to be a nuclear power. It has stated it wishes to wipe Israel “off the map”. It plays a game with weak -willed foreign politicians who pretend that diplomacy can defang the Mullahs. It can’t. The longer things are delayed the worse it gets. Israel cannot live with a nuclear Iran but that seems to be a choice it is to be denied. This one will end badly.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 9:09 am

Gordon Gallagher

This is such a sad tale really.

The parents of a schoolboy killed in an IRA bomb in Londonderry almost 40 years ago have said they believe the deputy first minister knows who was involved. Gordon Gallagher, 9, died when the device exploded in his garden in Creggan in 1973. Martin McGuinness was in jail at the time, but Billy and Pat Gallagher said he could help them get to the truth about what happened.

Good luck with that. I note the BBC does not share WHY Martin McGuinness was in jail. Wonder was it because in 1973, he was convicted by the Republic of Ireland’s Special Criminal Court, after being caught with a car containing 250 lb (113 kg) of explosives and nearly 5,000 rounds of ammunition. He refused to recognise the court, and was sentenced to six months imprisonment?

The IRA admitted to the family that a device had been left in the garden.

Ah – eventually. But…

However, it claimed the detonator was added by soldiers.

Yes, that seems so likely.

The schoolboy was playing ‘Cowboys and Indians’ in the garden with his younger brother when he tripped on the bomb which had been left there. His mother ran to help him.

The poor child and one feels so much for his family. But it is important to remember that in peace process land, there is little space for justice. That’s the price people are prepared to pay for the bogus peace. Clearly the self confessed IRA commander McGuinness would not know what his IRA associates were up to – nor would be know their names. Obviously.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 9:01 am

Let’s start with the details as known, shall we?

Anti-American demonstrations are under way in the Afghan cities of Kabul and Jalalabad over the burning of copies of the Koran by Nato troops. Shots have been fired in Kabul, where protesters have gathered outside a US military base. On Tuesday, the US  commander in Afghanistan, Gen John Allen, apologised after soldiers put copies of the Koran in an incinerator at Bagram airbase.

The charred remains of the books were found by local labourers. Protesters in Kabul shouted, “Death to America!” and threw stones at the main US base in the city. At least four policemen have been injured, reports the BBC’s Andrew North, in Kabul. Witnesses at the protests in Kabul said security guards were firing into the air. There are also reports of people chanting pro-Taliban slogans.”

Leave them to their Koran and Taliban worship. Let them rot in the stew of religious Islamic fundamentalism that they so clearly relish. The time has long past since our military should have left this hell hole. The utter humiliation of witnessing a senior US commander having to apologise to people who happily KILL our soldiers, hang their own when it suits them, and chant death to any who take issue with the Koran (or in this case accidentally burn a few copies) is unbearable. Let’s leave that country NOW but fly our drones in to take out any Taliban/Al Queda presence that might threaten us. Afghanistan is not worth one single US or UK life.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 8:55 am

Labour’s plan to allow unfettered immigration into the UK seems to working out pretty well as one might have forecast;

“The full impact of uncontrolled migration into the UK was laid bare yesterday by shock figures showing that four in every five babies born in some parts of London have foreign parents.

Across the capital two-thirds of the babies born in 2010 had a migrant mother or father. But in Newham the number of births to at least one non-British parent soared to an astonishing 84 per cent.

In only six of 32 London boroughs was the figure below 50 per cent. The report comes on top of official figures showing the number of babies born to foreign mothers in 2010 hit a record high. The Office of National Statistics said migrant mothers accounted for more than one in four births.”

The real demographic IMPACT of these stats will be felt in decades to come, and in particular if these kids do not assimilate into British society. With many on the Left running around denying that there is even such as thing as “British values” this lays down the ground for London to become even more UnBritish than it currently is. To have Borough with 80% non UK domiciled birth rates is stunning. Yet in truth a non-British London – and indeed other major cities – may well be the final consequence of the Labour years.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 8:48 am

Great news.

Plans for a £100m golf resort on Northern Ireland’s north coast have been given the go-ahead. The application to build an 18-hole golf course and hotel complex at Runkerry had been one of NI’s longest running planning disputes. The National Trust opposed the plan, but it is understood Department of Environment planners recommended it should go ahead. It is expected to create 360 new jobs. The new development, on a 365-acre site, will be known as Bushmills Dunes Golf Resort and Spa. It will include a championship course, five-star, 120-bedroom hotel and 70 golf lodges and could be open for business in 2014.

A new Golf resort. Located along a fringe of the North Coast which already has three well established golf courses. What can possibly go wrong with this wheeze?

The politicians behind this decision are scamming headlines without any real consideration if there is an actual demand for such a golf course. I notice that the Captain of Royal Portush says he believes that this new course will not impact on his club which seems to be a novel interpretation of the laws of supply and demand. Perhaps someone might explain the fate of the Loch Erne resort – another 18 hole course with a 5 star hotel built to championship standards and designed by Nick Faldo. It’s currently in administration – bankrupt. Still, it is never helpful to apply economic conditions to the phantasms that constitute “progress” in Northern Ireland.


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 8:41 am

Isn’t life grand when you work for the State;

“The civil servant who presided over years of chaos at the UK Border Agency has been  promoted – to run the tax office. Lin Homer was paid almost £1million in salary and bonuses over four years as the first chief executive of the beleaguered agency. But despite major criticisms of the department – and numerous other scandals she has been involved with in her lucrative 30-year public sector career – the 54-year-old has been made chief executive of HM Revenue  and Customs.”

I can’t wait for the Left to call for those “bonus payments” to be retrieved. I am sure the Public Sector trade unions will be on the march to demand bonus repatriation even as I type this. After all they call for the return of Banker bonuses so I am certain they will not be hypocrites and stay mute over Homer.

Sound of tumbleweed…..


By David Vance On February 22nd, 2012 at 8:37 am

Now WHO could have predicted this?

The amount of income tax paid fell sharply last month in the first formal indication that the new 50p higher rate is not raising the expected amount of revenue. The Treasury received £10.35 billion in income tax payments from those paying by self-assessment last month, a drop of £509 million compared with January 2011. Senior sources said that the first official figures indicated that there had been “manoeuvring” by well-off Britons to avoid the new higher rate. The figures will add to pressure on the Coalition to drop the levy amid fears it is forcing entrepreneurs to relocate abroad.

Just imagine – tax revenues falling as tax rates increase!

Hah! As you know, ATW’s treasury unit has long proclaimed that the one guarantee of reduced taxation yield is increased taxation rates. You may recall yours truly has pushed the idea of a standard FLAT TAX. Not only does this allow people to keep more of their hard earned income BUT it simplifies tax laws and increases tax yields. Naturally there are far too many vested interested to do anything as sensible as that and so Government cranks up the tax rate, complicates the system and then acts surprised when it sees revenues fall.

Montreal Canadiens’ Tribute to Gary Carter

By Phantom On February 22nd, 2012 at 2:54 am


Ask a New Yorker, and they’ll say that Gary Carter was one of the leaders and best players of the NY Mets 1986 World Series winning team. Which is true.

But before the Mets acquired Gary Carter in a trade in 1985, Carter played eleven years, and most of his best years, for the Montreal Expos. He was a great player, the best catcher in baseball for a time.

Last week, Gary Carter died of brain cancer at the age of 57.

I’m not sure that New Yorkers realized just how great an athlete and man that Carter was. He was an extroverts’ extrovert, always smiling and always wiling to talk to a reporter. But ( and this I’ve only learned this week ) he was also always willing to speak to the fans, including the young kids, to whom baseball players are gods. He treated the batboy the same way he treated the owner of the team.

When Carter was called up to the Montreal Expos in 1974, they were the only major league team in Canada. They had the vast country to themselves. There were Expos fans in Saskatchewan. They drew huge crowds at the concrete,lifeless Olympic Stadium. Prime Minister Trudeau once remarked that he was happy that he never had to run against Carter in an election.

The Expos fans were cheated out of what could have been a World Series appearance when there was a players strike. The crowds grew thin. Eight years ago, the Expos left Montreal.

Through pure coincidence, I attended both the first game that the Montreal Expos ever played, in 1969, and the last game they ever played, in 2004. Both were at Shea Stadium. With a few others, I cheered for the Expos to win their last game. They lost, 8 to 1.

Carter’s death has caused a flood of memories in Montreal. There is a lot of traffic on the Montreal Expos Facebook page, for a team that’s been gone eight years.

The Montreal City Council just passed a resolution. They will name a street or other public place for him.

A few nights ago, the Montreal Canadiens hockey team gave a tribute to Montreal’s adopted son. I hope you like it.

Je me souviens.


By Pete Moore On February 21st, 2012 at 9:37 pm

The White House believes, as it always has done, that most people are stupid:


If you believe that, you’ll believe it’s why food, land, gold, silver, copper and sugar are moving up too, and that Ben Bernanke’s mad money machine has nothing to do with it.