BCfm’s weekly politics show presented by Tony Gosling
For all the shows back to Easter 2009 visit the Friday Drivetime archive page
First hour: Bristol ‘City Slackers’ Simon Cook (Clifton East) and Cheryl Anne (Horfield) LibDem councillors standing for re-election. News review with Cllr. Helen Holland (Lab), who is also leader of the Labour Group. National Labour poll down to 35% while UKIP surge continues in Opinium/Observer poll. Next Thursday’s elections are discussed and also some economics – UK budget deficit barely falls in 2012/13, more pain ahead – fell to £114.2 bn in the tax year which ended in March. This equates to 7.4% of GDP or economic output, down from 7.9% in 2012/13. Britain’s total net public debt, excluding the direct costs of bailing out the country’s banks, is still much higher than before the financial crisis at a record £1.186 tn or 75.4% of GDP. Cuts have brought a loss of £450 a head to every person in Bristol; ‘the multiplier effect’ of the cuts. Stories covered: Food Banks have tripled in the past year, more than 350,000 people turned to food banks for help last year, almost triple the number who received food aid in the previous year and 100,000 more than anticipated, according to the Trussel Trust, UK’s biggest food crisis charity – PMQs clip of this; PMQ clips of how the rich are getting richer; Bristol North West MP Charlotte Leslie criticises Bristol City Council who top of the national league for ‘Gagging Clauses’ or, as the Bristol Evening Post calls them ‘compromise agreements’ and demands they stop the practice which has cost Bristol City council tax payers £1m over five years, used to silence sacked Coroner and his staff and bring in what anonymous silenced staff member calls ‘a puppet coroner’; First Bus won’t run CND anti-Trident ad. which explains the nuclear missile system’s cost: £100bn and fail to reply to letter asking them to explain; ‘Big four’ accountants, including KPMG, ‘use knowledge of Treasury to help rich avoid tax’, draw up laws on tax and then advising their clients how to avoid this tax; voxpop on the elections by Marina Morris and discussion of why more than half the people asked do not see the point in voting.
Second hour: Round up of international stories with Martin Summers: have chemical weapons been used in Syria, and if so, by which side? Revealed: George Osborne’s secret veto on fraud inquiries, SFO poised to drop investigation into claims of Saudi arms bribes. Conservative Chancellor George Osborne and cuts to the Serious Fraud Office (SFO); Jack Lopresti, Tory Freemason MP for Filton and Bradley Stoke, caught changing his story… admits to representing UK weapons manufacturers in Saudi Arabia:
From Private Eye: ANOTHER gaggle of Tory MPs has paid a friendly visit to the authoritarian Saudi Arabian government, according to the latest register of MPs’ interests. This is the second recent Tory trip to Saudi, after four Tory MPs went on shindig with the sheikhs in December. In February Eye 1334 pointed out apparent errors in the way one of them, Filton MP Jack Lopresti, described his trip: Lopresti’s entry in the MPs’ register failed to mention that it was arranged by the UK Defence Forum, an arms-industry-funded group. Lopresti also claimed to have met “various human rights groups”, which seemed unlikely. Lopresti has now corrected his entry: he now acknowledges the role of the UK Defence Forum and all mention of “human rights groups” has gone.
UN torture expert’s visit postponed again by Bahrain regime as protests continue around this weekend’s Grand Prix; Martin asks if it’s okay for bloody revolution in Syria why not in Bahrain too? More cracks appear in the official Boston bombings story; Tamerlan Tsarnaev apparently arrested naked in handcuffs without injury last Thursday evening, so how was he killed and his body mutilated? Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was apparently not ‘on the run’ but at college during last week. Secret super-elite Mafia dons Bilderberg cartel meeting in Hertfordshire, the Logan Act in the US which prohibits politicians from having private meetings like this; similar civil service code in UK; Birmingham terror plotters sentenced but they had no bomb making equipment, capability and no targets; Mike Birkin from South West Friends of the Earth, discusses the ‘Carbon Bubble’ alternative energy, 50th anniversary of the Beeching Report railway axe, local railways and EDF’s plan for a projected nuclear power station at Hinkley Point. Interview with thriller writer and WWII deception planner Dennis Wheatley about witchcraft and black magic for Walpurgis night on Tuesday 30th April. BBC4 censor documentary on history of Palestine/Israel, ‘Jerusalem: An Archaeological Mystery Story’ by Jewish filmmaker Ilan Ziv, which suggests the present Jews have no ‘right of return’ to Palestine since they are not related to those exiled by the Romans in 70AD.