Uber and TFL – Power to Individuals? Not under Labour

September 22, 2017 at 8:36 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Uber and TFL – Power to Individuals? Not under Labour
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So, to the surprise of no one who pays attention to City Hall in London the TFL has banned Uber for reasons which to be frank are petty to say the least. Especially as many of the reasons that they state for blocking of Uber are actually the responsibility of the TFL themselves under the relevant acts of parliament.

However, with the Taxi Cab Unions putting Labour in control of City Hall this decision does not surprise me.

With 3.5 Million people using Uber and over 300k people having signed a petition against the ban already in just four hours.

However, one thing this does expose is the current Leadership of the Labour party’s distaste for ordinary people.
If there is anything that puts power to individuals to have freedom of choice and a choice of power away from the state is to Ban it.

The Labour party believes that the state is the solution to everything.

It is not, if the state is the answer to every problem then why can’t it rise to the challenge of adapting to new solutions and industries?

Because it cannot and today’s decision is a reminder of Labour’s gut instincts when it comes to any challenge and it is to Ban it. If Labour wins the next election expect your freedom of choice to slowly vanish starting with services such as Uber, Netflix and JustEat.

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More Authoritarianism in Venezuela & lack of condemnation from Labour Leadership

September 14, 2017 at 5:00 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on More Authoritarianism in Venezuela & lack of condemnation from Labour Leadership
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Venezuela’s descent into tyranny and oppression continues at a startling pace. With Starvation increasing to the point that the leadership are now urging people to breed Rabbits to eat after all they have raided the Zoo’s already for food. 1

How much more will it take to get a condemnation from the leader of the Labour party?

Despite international condemnation, the leader of the Labour party all he could do was to do a Donald Trump and condemn both sides, despite clear evidence of this coming from one source.

In the case of Venezuela, it is the government, in the case of the incidents in Charlottesville it was the Far Right.

My previous post on Venezuela did get some comments regarding Saudi Arabia and Apartheid South Africa and Conservatives failure to condemn them.

Again, this rises the point of the insufferable feeling of being “right” on the left wing.

This fact remains, the Leader of the Labour Party saw Venezuela as the way forward and that we should be emulating it.

There is no one in the leadership of the Conservative Party who wanted or wants to emulate Apartheid South Africa or Saudi Arabia.

We now know that behind the Scenes the UK government under Margret Thatcher did more than any other government to end Apartheid, and to quote Nelson Mandela himself to the shock and dismay of Labour party leadership of the 80’s and 90’s.

Mrs Thatcher is “An enemy of apartheid”

Yet the leadership of the Labour party commended Venezuela as a beacon and now refuses to formally condemn now it has become an Authoritarian state.

1: As an aside eating Rabbits is a terrible idea and one that could only come from a Socialist government as Rabbit is not a good eating meat and can lead to Protein poisoning.

Kenya Election Result Overturned – Electronic voting Part 2

September 1, 2017 at 4:00 pm | Posted in Cyber Security, Musings | Comments Off on Kenya Election Result Overturned – Electronic voting Part 2
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It has been a month since I posted previously about electronic voting and my preference for pen and paper as it is more challenging to compromise that method.

https://guygrandison.wordpress.com/2017/08/01/electronic-voting-its-hard-to-hack-a-piece-of-paper/

Today it has been announced that the Supreme Court of Kenya has overturned the election result of the recent presidential election due to failures in the electronic voting system.

Now the court has not revealed if this was a result of a Cyber Attack or Data Breach and whether it was malicious or not. However, it has revealed that one of the reasons for the overturning of the result was the failures of the electronic voting system.

Given the history of “rigged” elections in some African countries I can understand the desire to go to electronic voting as it is easier than filling ballot boxes with false ballots and the mantra of “vote early, vote often.” It seems though in this case that this has failed to move by as well.

I will read the full report from the Court with interest.

Australia vs New Zealand – Citizenship rights.

August 15, 2017 at 4:00 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Australia vs New Zealand – Citizenship rights.
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It is all kicking off in the Southern Ocean, and it is not being friendly.

Over the last few months there has been a story rumbling of various members of parliament having to resign their seats due to having dual citizenship.

Under Australian Law, it is illegal to stand for Parliament if you “knowingly” hold dual citizenship and across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand automatically grant’s citizenship if one of your parents is a New Zealander. Although you have to apply.

This Scandal has now affected with government with the Deputy Prime Minister being informed that he holds New Zealand citizenship. Something that he claims not to have known.

However, this story has taken a more interesting term as it turns out that the Labor Party in Australia instigated the investigation into his citizenship working closely with the Labor Party in New Zealand.
This story will rumble on.

One thing that is slowly being agreed on though is that the Australian Law needs to be changed as currently almost half of all Australian citizen’s hold dual citizenship of some form or another.

Labour Leadership & Venezuela – “Many people died on both sides of the Battle of Yavin – I condemn both the Death Star and the Rebel X-Wings.”

August 8, 2017 at 10:00 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Labour Leadership & Venezuela – “Many people died on both sides of the Battle of Yavin – I condemn both the Death Star and the Rebel X-Wings.”
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The pressure that has been mounting on the Leader of the Labour party to condemn the actions taken by the Venezuela government and that I wrote about last week. Now that Jeremy Corbyn has returned from his holiday the statement came.

Moreover, he failed to do so in a spectacular fashion.

Within the statement, he condemned the violence of both sides.

However, there is no equity in the violence here. The United Nations has now spoken out and lays the blame of the issues and unrest of Venezuela at the highest levels of the Venezuelan government and the Venezuelan government is oppressing human rights of its citizens.

You also get within the statement, that the economy was “too dependent on oil” and that there were “effective and serious attempts at reducing poverty.”

This is an effective attempt at reducing Poverty? Where over three in four people now live in poverty and where food now costs three times the minimum wage.
Any progress that has been made to reducing Poverty in Venezuela has now moved it back to levels not seen before the 1950’s.

As for dependency on the Oil, that is true but surely that should have been for the government of Venezuela to deal with they own the oil company. Instead, due to pricing controls manufacturing in the country collapsed by a third.

I condemn the Labour Leadership for their stance on the Venezuela Crisis and commend those in the Labour party that are taking a stand against it as many around the world are.

Jeremy Corbyn once said that by being “neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor”

So yes Mr Corbyn, you have chosen the side of the Oppressor.

PS: Credit to Tom Harris, former Labour MP for the Death Star line.

Black Hat vs White Hat

August 7, 2017 at 4:00 pm | Posted in Cyber Security, Musings | Comments Off on Black Hat vs White Hat
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This Blog is entirely my own opinion and is no way tied to my employer. 

Last week, news broke that the cyber security analyst who stopped the Wannacry cyber security incident in May had been arrested in Las Vegas while attending the ethical hacking conference. He was accused and charged with having previously creating a piece of banking malware that gained notoriety around 2014.

Now, in this case as always the presumption is innocent until proven guilty.

However, it does pose significant questions as to those researchers who were previously wearing the “Black hat” and facing off against the security industry and later chose to go legitimate and become “white hats” in security industry.

If there is a sword of Damocles hanging over them about their past then it adds a further question as to if they want to go legitimate.

It all boils down to the principles of Sun Tzu and the Art of War. How far are States willing to overlook past crimes for the greater good.

Sun Tzu says on spies, in chapter 13 of Art of War
“Having CONVERTED SPIES, getting hold of the enemy’s spies and using them for our own purposes.”

Converted Spies are deemed the most useful by Sun Tzu as it enables other spies to be brought in based on the knowledge of the converted spy.

A thousands year old text still has relevance today and in the cyber security industry chapter 13 is especially relevant. As the knowledge that those researchers who were formally on the other side of the battle is extremely valuable.

It is entirely possible that regardless of whether the Wannacry researcher is guilty or not that the actions taken in the US have potentially put off future Black Hats from becoming White Hats and that the knowledge they would have brought is now lost.

Labour Leadership silence – Venezuela a better way of doing things?

August 3, 2017 at 5:00 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Labour Leadership silence – Venezuela a better way of doing things?
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In the past Week, the failing state of Venezuela finally took the steps to throw off the idea of democracy and finally descended into an Autocracy. With opposition leaders arrested by the secret police and parliament having now been effectively bypassed.

International condemnation has been swift from the US, EU and the UK.
However, the UN has been strangely silent on these matters.

Individual Labour party MP’s including the shadow foreign secretary have joined condemnation from other left wing parties throughout Europe in condemning the leadership of Venezuela. However, there has been largely silence from the Labour Leader’s office.

The Reason, because I fear that this is what the Labour Leader wants society to be like.
Corbyn & his leadership team have been praising Venezuela for the better part of two decades. Corbyn himself is quoted as saying of Venezuela.

“Showed us there is a different and better way of doing things. It’s called Socialism”

Well let us see what socialism has done to Venezuela?

  • 3rd Highest murder rate in the world.
  • Inflation at 2000%, shortages in basic food and medicines.
  • Bribery and corruption rampant.
  • Freedom of the Press destroyed with protests now going on three years.
  • Tampered elections and opposition politicians arrested and banned.
  • Poverty increasing dramatically.

This is a better way of doing things?
No its not, since the fall of the Soviet Union in the 90’s brought about a decrease in absolute poverty by nearly two thirds and Venezuela is now trying to reverse that statistic.

The Labour Leadership who have for nearly the past twenty years praised Venezuela now need to come out and condemn it and stop trying to claim that what Venezuela did was the right thing to do as it has been proven, as has been proven every time before it.

Socialism doesn’t work.

Election Fall Out – Tim Farron Resignation

June 15, 2017 at 9:00 am | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Election Fall Out – Tim Farron Resignation
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As covered in an earlier posts regarding the myth of the 48% and the whether Progressive parties are actually regressive in their attitudes to other thoughts and opinions.

The Liberal Democrats did not have a very good election campaign; they gained a net of four seats and lost five they held previously. Together with their share of the vote being squeezed even further.  Now their leader has resigned.

I have very little respect for Liberal Democrats as a party as I have experienced first-hand the nastiness of the party as a collective group. Individually they can be fantastic people but as a collective, they are not.

However, there was one thing that Tim Farron said that did increase my respect for him a Modicum.

“To be a political leader – especially of a progressive, liberal party in 2017 – and to live as a committed Christian, to hold faithfully to the Bible’s teaching, has felt impossible for me.”

That statement is an extraordinary sideswipe at the party that Farron led as it can be read as that having Religious beliefs and being a member of the Liberal Democrats is currently incompatible.

This is something that appears to sadly happening that if you hold religious beliefs that a vocal number of society (especially on social media) you should be vilified and shouted down.
This is completely wrong and needs to be challenged.

The Problem with Labour’s Policies

May 31, 2017 at 5:00 pm | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on The Problem with Labour’s Policies
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A short post here

A few colleagues and myself were discussing  over lunch whom would be affected by the Labour parties proposals as they more or less fall into the 5% who will pay for “everything” according the Labour party.

The First said
“Taxes are already too High, if Labour gets in i will negotiate to work only four days a week, company is flexible enough for that and that will drop me below the £80K.”

The Second said
“I was asked if i would consider a role in Ireland, i’d take that”

The Third said
“I’d apply for a US or Canada based role”

Three people who have already made completely legal plans if Labour gets in. This is the problem with “squeeze the Rich” mentality in a global economy it is easier now than ever to move around the globe for work and if just 10 to 15% of the 5% whom Labour intend to squeeze do what has been proposed above the drop in tax revenue will be pushing 30% of the group that pays almost half of all tax.

That is not sustainable.

Snap, Crackle, and Pop – A General Election

April 19, 2017 at 11:04 am | Posted in Musings | Comments Off on Snap, Crackle, and Pop – A General Election
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Well colour me surprised that is for sure.

Yesterday the Prime minister announced that she would seek an early general election and all of this without the repeal of the fixed term parliament act.

One thing is certain and that this Snap decision to call an election has certainly set the country a Crackle and caused the political parties and commentators to Pop with indignation at being scooped by the Prime Minister.

This was something that many including myself did not see coming although having sat and pondered for some time after the snap announcement of the election my cynical political hack head actually realised what was going on.

The Prime minster has a very narrow majority (12) and with perhaps the busiest parliament in living memory coming forward in order to deal with the process of leaving the European Union. A tiny majority is something that would not be sustainable so in order to ensure that the process does not become the largest set of Pork Barrel[a] Bills in recent history.

Going to the country now and potentially, getting a larger majority removes that ability of interest groups to enable to the Bills to become Pork Barrel Bills.

There is also the mere fact that the Leader of the Opposition is to be frank, not prime ministerial in any sense of the word. I am a firm believer that the best governments are those with a reasonably competent opposition party in order to hold them to account, right now there are none.

I look forward to campaigning to return my local MP’s one of whom happens to be the Prime Minister and will be campaigning and commentating on this 50 day campaign for the foreseeable future.

[a] Pork barrel is a metaphor for the appropriation of government spending for localized projects secured solely or primarily to bring money to a representative’s district.

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