Browse files

Added some more tests.

  • Loading branch information...
1 parent fb34f1c commit 2d17e7ec69748bacfc38ed0ec4d70f3152f0de0d @davorg committed Aug 22, 2010
Showing with 500 additions and 0 deletions.
  1. +1 −0 MANIFEST
  2. +21 −0 t/04_mps.t
  3. +181 −0 t/data/stevebaker.xml
  4. +274 −0 t/data/talkcarswell.xml
  5. +23 −0 t/mprc
View
1 MANIFEST
@@ -19,6 +19,7 @@ META.yml
t/01_basic.t
t/02_phases.t
t/03_noconf.t
+t/04_mps.t
t/05_cache.t
t/pod.t
t/pod_coverage.t
View
21 t/04_mps.t
@@ -0,0 +1,21 @@
+use Test::More tests => 9;
+use FindBin qw($Bin);
+use_ok('Perlanet::Simple');
+
+chdir $Bin;
+ok(my $p = Perlanet::Simple->new_with_config(configfile => 'mprc'),
+ 'Object created');
+isa_ok($p, 'Perlanet');
+
+is(@{$p->feeds}, 2, 'Two feeds');
+my @feeds = $p->fetch_feeds(@{$p->feeds});
+is(@feeds, 2, 'Two fetchable feeds');
+my @selected = $p->select_entries(@feeds);
+is(@selected, 2, 'Two selected entries');
+my @sorted = $p->sort_entries(@selected);
+is(@sorted, 2, 'Two sorted entries');
+my @cleaned = $p->clean_entries(@sorted);
+is(@cleaned, 2, 'Two cleaned entries');
+my $feed = $p->build_feed(@cleaned);
+isa_ok($feed, 'Perlanet::Feed', 'Got a feed');
+
View
181 t/data/stevebaker.xml
@@ -0,0 +1,181 @@
+<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?><feed
+ xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2005/Atom"
+ xmlns:thr="http://purl.org/syndication/thread/1.0"
+ xml:lang="en"
+ xml:base="http://www.stevebaker.info/wp-atom.php"
+ >
+ <title type="text">Steve Baker</title>
+ <subtitle type="text">One life. Live it.</subtitle>
+
+ <updated>2010-08-22T08:52:00Z</updated>
+ <generator uri="http://wordpress.org/" version="2.9.2">WordPress</generator>
+
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/feed/atom/</id>
+ <link rel="self" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/feed/atom/" />
+
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Government urged to reveal &#8216;true&#8217; national debt of £4.8 trillion &#8211; Telegraph]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/government-urged-to-reveal-true-national-debt-of-4-8%c2%a0trillion-telegraph/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7960</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-22T08:52:00Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-22T08:52:00Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="BIS" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="debt" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="economics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="IEA" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Parliament" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[Via Government urged to reveal &#8216;true&#8217; national debt of £4.8 trillion &#8211; Telegraph:
+The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) has calculated that the national debt is £4.8 trillion once state and public sector pension liabilities are included, or £78,000 for every person in the UK.
+The IEA raised its concerns after the latest public finances data from the ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/government-urged-to-reveal-true-national-debt-of-4-8%c2%a0trillion-telegraph/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/government-urged-to-reveal-true-national-debt-of-4-8%c2%a0trillion-telegraph/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Rivlin, Understanding the Law]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/rivlin-understanding-the-law/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7948</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-20T20:15:09Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-21T08:22:39Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Books" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Law" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Property" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[I first mentioned Understanding the Law by Geoffrey Rivlin after observing the proceedings of Wycombe Magistrates&#8217; Court. At last, I have finished it.
+The book is a tour de force covering the law and its importance, the courts, the constitution, Parliament, the police, the judiciary, human rights, discrimination, the legal profession, the work of the courts ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/rivlin-understanding-the-law/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/rivlin-understanding-the-law/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[War planes mark 70th anniversary of Winston Churchill&#8217;s Battle of Britain speech &#8211; Telegraph]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/war-planes-mark-70th-anniversary-of-winston-churchills-battle-of-britain-speech-telegraph/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7958</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-20T20:21:33Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-20T20:21:33Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Heroism" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Liberty" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="RAF" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="War" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[Ex-fighter pilots and relatives of war heroes joined commemorations as Sir Winston Churchill&#8217;s stirring &#8217;so much owed by so many to so few&#8217; speech was read out, prompting tears in the crowd.
+The actor Robert Hardy began reading out the speech at 3.52pm, exactly 70 years after the wartime prime minister delivered it in Parliament.
+via War ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/war-planes-mark-70th-anniversary-of-winston-churchills-battle-of-britain-speech-telegraph/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/war-planes-mark-70th-anniversary-of-winston-churchills-battle-of-britain-speech-telegraph/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Heroes or victims?]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/heroes-or-victims/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7944</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-20T17:48:53Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-20T17:48:03Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Photography" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[Beth and I just spent a few days in Cumbria with old friends and their wonderful children. When he and I graduated together from the Royal Air Force College Cranwell, we never imagined that today I would be an MP and he would be managing a major manufacturing facility, but that is a story for ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/heroes-or-victims/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/heroes-or-victims/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Dr Eamonn Butler, Austrian Economics &#8211; A Primer]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/austrian-economics-a-primer/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7940</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-18T17:50:19Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-19T11:03:04Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Austrian School" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Books" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Cobden Centre" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="economics" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[This post originally appeared at The Cobden Centre.
+Following his introduction to Mises, Dr Eamonn Butler has released his latest book, Austrian Economics &#8211; A Primer. I recommend it strongly if you want to grasp the fundamentals of the Austrian School of Economics as quickly as possible: at just 118 pages, this pamphlet can be tackled ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/austrian-economics-a-primer/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/austrian-economics-a-primer/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Alternatives to capitalism: Nikolai Bukharin on the division of labour]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/nikolai-bukharin-on-the-division-of-labour/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=3473</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-18T09:35:29Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-18T09:01:56Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Capitalism" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Communism" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Favourite" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Incompetence" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Market Intervention" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="USSR" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[Brought forward &#8211; I&#8217;m on holiday.
+Thinking about the pressures on capitalism &#8212; or rather, on the interventionism that passes for capitalism today &#8212; and on the alternative which was most comprehensively implemented, I discovered this recipe for chaos and failure from Bukharin:
+Under communism people receive a many-sided culture, and find themselves at home in various ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/nikolai-bukharin-on-the-division-of-labour/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/nikolai-bukharin-on-the-division-of-labour/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Thought for the day &#8211; Karl Popper on reason and critical discussion]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/popper-on-reason/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7936</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-17T09:56:27Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-17T09:56:27Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Parliament" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Popper" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Quotations" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Reason" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[From All Life is Problem Solving:
+When I speak of reason or rationalism, all I mean is the conviction that we can learn through criticism of our mistakes and errors, especially through criticism by others, and eventually also through self-criticism. A rationalist is simply someone for whom it is more important to learn than to be ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/popper-on-reason/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/popper-on-reason/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Thought for the day &#8211; Bastiat]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-bastiat/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7925</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-11T08:47:12Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-16T08:45:36Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Bastiat" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Quotations" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[From Bastiat&#8217;s dialogue What is Money?
+B. I have not yet made up my mind that your views upon money and political economy in general are correct. But, from your conversation, this is what I have gathered: — That these questions are of the highest importance; for peace or war, order or anarchy, the union or ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-bastiat/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-bastiat/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Thought for the day &#8211; Churchill]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-churchill/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7920</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-13T07:05:59Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-13T06:41:39Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Churchill" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Quotations" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[Though this is from Winston Churchill&#8217;s The Second World War, Volume I : The Gathering Storm (1948), it seems relevant to the intellectual battle over economics we face today:
+If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-churchill/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/thought-for-the-day-churchill/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ <entry>
+ <author>
+ <name>Steve Baker</name>
+ <uri>http://www.stevebaker.info/</uri>
+ </author>
+ <title type="html"><![CDATA[Labour&#8217;s legacy]]></title>
+ <link rel="alternate" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/labours-legacy-2/" />
+ <id>http://www.stevebaker.info/?p=7930</id>
+ <updated>2010-08-11T12:28:19Z</updated>
+ <published>2010-08-12T07:00:19Z</published>
+ <category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Politics" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Incompetence" /><category scheme="http://www.stevebaker.info" term="Labour" /> <summary type="html"><![CDATA[A new video from the Party:
+
+Sayeeda Warsi, Co-Chairman of Conservative Party, has written:
+Labour&#8217;s incompetent handling of our economy will hit all of our pockets. The cuts to come are Labour&#8217;s cuts. So, it&#8217;s only fair that the people responsible should share some of the pain. That&#8217;s why today I have written to each of Labour&#8217;s leadership ]]></summary>
+ <link rel="replies" type="text/html" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/labours-legacy-2/#comments" thr:count="0"/>
+ <link rel="replies" type="application/atom+xml" href="http://www.stevebaker.info/2010/08/labours-legacy-2/feed/atom/" thr:count="0"/>
+ <thr:total>0</thr:total>
+ </entry>
+ </feed>
View
274 t/data/talkcarswell.xml
@@ -0,0 +1,274 @@
+<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><rss version="2.0"><channel><title>TalkCarswell RSS Feed</title><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com</link><description>The latest blog entries from Douglas Carswell</description><copyright>(c) 2010 Douglas Carswell</copyright><lastBuildDate>Sat, 21 Aug 2010 09:37:00 GMT</lastBuildDate><item><item_Id>1545</item_Id><title>Australian election knife-edge</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ Polling shows that today&amp;#8217;s Australian election is a neck-and-neck contest between Labor and the centre-right Liberal Party.&amp;#160;Even if&amp;#160;Tony Abbott, the Liberal leader, doesn&amp;#8217;t quite make it to become Australia&amp;#8217;s next Prime Minister, this has been a striking turnabout for him and his party.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Some experts attribute this revival of Ozzie centre right fortunes to the modernising strategy Abbott and his tight-knit clique of advisers have&amp;#160;followed since he took over as leader.&amp;#160;&amp;#8220;The break-through came when we made it clear we no longer believed in our traditional agenda&amp;#8221; explained one Canberra insider yesterday.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;&amp;#8220;By ditching that old &amp;#8220;right wing&amp;#8221; agenda that used to focus on immigration,&amp;#160;lower taxes and&amp;#160;smaller government, we&amp;#8217;ve stormed ahead with folk who&amp;#8217;d never vote for us anyway&amp;#8221;.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Instead, the closed clique of Canberra advisers decided to put&amp;#160;tackling climate change at the centre of their&amp;#160;agenda&amp;#160;- and have seen a sharp increase in the Liberal's&amp;#160;appeal as a consequence, think&amp;#160;some.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Arch modernisers have also put special focus on community engagement.&amp;#160;&amp;#8220;We&amp;#8217;ve been sending teams of our activists out to Fiji to teach the kids ping pong.&amp;#160;It&amp;#8217;s win-win.&amp;#160;They get to improve their forehand and back spin.&amp;#160;In doing so, we get to show how we can make a difference in key suburban constituencies in Sydney and Melbourne, and maybe even in Broome, too.&amp;#160;We hope&amp;#8221; explained one.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Faced with the most hopelessly divided, incompetent and badly led Labor party in a generation one key strategist explained &amp;#8220;If we don&amp;#8217;t win, we&amp;#8217;ll focus on making the&amp;#160;AV electoral system the issue.&amp;#160;We will demand a referendum on adopting first-past-the-post, rather than face up to why it is we stuffed up&amp;#8221;.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1545</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1545</guid><pubDate>Sat, 21 Aug 2010 09:37:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1544</item_Id><title>The internet gives us unprecedented freedom</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The Guardian&amp;#8217;s&amp;#160;&lt;a style="color: #0000ff" href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/aug/19/the-anglosphere-is-interesting-enough"&gt;Martin Kettle has an interesting article&lt;/a&gt; suggesting that the internet is having a profound cultural impact on the UK, leading to a &amp;#8220;national mental disengagement with Europe&amp;#8221;. &amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;With the whole planet just a few clicks away, &amp;#8220;it is hard to recall a time&amp;#8221; he laments&amp;#8221; when the national .... mind was less informed about or engaged with Europe than it is today. &amp;#160;.... Being in Europe has never impinged less.&amp;#8221; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Boo hoo.&amp;#160;How tragic. &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Perhaps the left is about to discover a broader truth;&amp;#160;the internet makes it impossible for elites to try to shape the planet, and the people on it, according to their own preconceived notions of how the world should be.&amp;#160;The dispersed, democratic medium that is the internet doesn&amp;#8217;t produce a shiny new Euro-identity because that shiny new Euro-identity is the bogus product of a remote elite.&amp;#160;And it&amp;#8217;s not only top down Euro elitism that is threatened by the web.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p style="color: red"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: red; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The internet frees us as citizens from politicians, as communities from the centralised state, as producers and consumers from mega corporations, and as people from our geography.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;That's pretty&amp;#160;catastrophic if you happen to be a Fabian supporter of&amp;#160;centralised&amp;#160;public service provision, who wants a regulated economy and see yourself as a&amp;#160;Euro citizen.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Bad news for Guardianistas.&amp;#160;Good news for the rest of the planet. &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1544</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1544</guid><pubDate>Fri, 20 Aug 2010 10:24:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1543</item_Id><title>Leon Brittan to advise on trade</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Leon Brittan has been appointed as a trade adviser to the government.&amp;#160;Not that the UK government has any real say over UK trade policy.&amp;#160;As an ex-Eurocrat, I&amp;#8217;m sure Lord Brittan knows that already.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;But still, why not appoint as a trade adviser a man whose career saw him help&amp;#160;lock UK trade ever more tightly into the sclerotic, high tax / high regulation Eurozone?&amp;#160;It could be just the thing to&amp;#160;stimulate trade with India&amp;#160;and China. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The fact Lord L&amp;#160;happens to have been explicitly hostile to the Tory cause in the run up to the last set of Euro elections even gives his elevation an uber moderniser, welcome-to-the-Big-Tent twist.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Something tells me that his &amp;#163;500 per day&amp;#160;review (according to the BBC) is unlikely conclude that we&amp;#160;should boost our global trade by&amp;#160;having less interference from Europe.&amp;#160;Nor, if I was a gambling sort, would I put money on an ex-official ever proposing fewer officials, less regulation and lower taxation.&amp;#160;Instead, I imagine any proposals will somehow offer the opposite - coordinated trade strategies, picking winners, and&amp;#160;bigger export credit subsidies for big corporations .....&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Perhaps Leon&amp;#160;might&amp;#160;be asked to lobby his former Eurocrat colleagues to ask if we might be allowed to have the sort of trade policy we need?&amp;#160; It is after all they, not anyone you voted for, who now decides.&amp;#160; &amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Enough about technocratic appointments.&amp;#160;How are those Coalition proposals to make government more accountable to Parliament coming along? &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1543</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1543</guid><pubDate>Thu, 19 Aug 2010 15:21:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1542</item_Id><title>AV referendum - it doesn't have to be this way</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Perhaps like me, you sense there&amp;#8217;s something not right with our political system.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;Yet you can't quite see how&amp;#160;AV is the solution.&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Maybe, when the Coalition was first formed, you found yourself&amp;#160;pleasantly surprised.&amp;#160;So much so,&amp;#160;that when Dave and Nick announced a referendum on electoral reform, you thought &amp;#8220;why not?&amp;#8221; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Over the summer, I&amp;#8217;ve been looking hard to see how AV is the answer to anything.&amp;#160;I still don't get it. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;AV does nothing to solve the problem of &amp;#8220;safe seat&amp;#8221; party fiefdoms, which make so many MPs answer inward to party whips, rather than outward to local people. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Far from making our politicians more accountable, surely AV actually allows them to disregard large chunks of opinion?&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;For a generation or so, we have been moving from a political system dominated by two-and-a-half parties, towards one with a spectrum of choice.&amp;#160; Voters want representation that is&amp;#160;niche, distinctive, particular and local.&amp;#160;Big political parties that only do generic brand politics, built on centrally controlled messages and parroted scripts, have lost market share as a consequence. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;A cynic might see AV as the Westminster village&amp;#8217;s response to its collective loss of market share.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: red; font-size: 11pt"&gt;With elections decided on&amp;#160;second preferences, people's votes will eventually go to&amp;#160;the established parties.&amp;#160; The established parties won't have quite the same need to go after people's votes.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;&amp;#160;The results will favour the generic and&amp;#160;bland &amp;#160;&amp;#8211; and maybe even the mediocrities, too.&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;I remain puzzled as to why the Coalition is proposing a referendum on AV when neither the Tories nor the Lib Dems offered AV in their manifestos.&amp;#160;Whatever thought process went into Coalition haggling, surely the point is that the people &amp;#8211; not politicians - should have the final say over any change.&amp;#160;So why not ensure that any referendum offers voters real choice, including the option of multi-member seats?&amp;#160;Why not include Disraeli&amp;#8217;s idea of three member boroughs?&amp;#160;Irish-style STV? &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: red; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The referendum on electoral reform must allow people to make a choice based on all the options &amp;#8211; including multi-member seats - not merely the politicians&amp;#8217; preferences.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;o:p&gt;UPDATE:&amp;#160; One of my readers points out that STV in Ireland doesn't work, apparently.&amp;#160; It "creates a parliament of local interests ... focused on thier constituency".&amp;#160; The horror! ...&amp;#160;when you can have a&lt;/o:p&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;o:p&gt;parliament of party interests in which MPs focus on&amp;#160;gaining promotion from&amp;#160;whips.&amp;#160; &lt;/o:p&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;o:p&gt;
+ &lt;/o:p&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;o:p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #0000ff"&gt;And worse, there's "pork barrel" in Ireland, too, apparently.&amp;#160; Thank&amp;#160;goodness&amp;#160;schools, hospitals and defence contracts are never dished out in&amp;#160;certain constituencies for political considerations under our electoral system ....&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/o:p&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1542</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1542</guid><pubDate>Wed, 18 Aug 2010 09:51:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1541</item_Id><title>How to stop the cowboy clampers?</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Rogue car clampers are a real menace.&amp;#160;Hardly a week goes by without a constituent complaining that they&amp;#8217;ve been forced to pay &amp;#163; hundreds for momentarily pulling onto a bit of pavement outside an empty shop.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;It&amp;#8217;s also driving trade out of towns like Clacton.&amp;#160;Pensioners stung with big bills, and confronted by foul-mouthed thugs, are hardly likely to shop in town again. &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Something needs to be done.&amp;#160;But what? &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;One idea would be to regulate those permitted to wheel clamp - and the fees they charge.&amp;#160;But something tells me that&amp;#160;putting an IPSA-type quango in charge&amp;#160;is never an effective&amp;#160;solution to anything. &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Another proposal is a&amp;#160;blanket ban on clamping&amp;#160;vehicles on private land.&amp;#160;It&amp;#8217;s been suggested that this form part of the Freedom Bill.&amp;#160; A Freedom Bill that bans things is a novel idea, but not one that I&amp;#8217;m sure is going to be 100% effective.&amp;#160;I imagine that the thugs that extort money at present would be perfectly capable of doing so with a ticketing system that permitted them to demand payment, without actually having to use clamps.&amp;#160; &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The heart of the problem is caused by the legal right of the cowboy clampers to demand payment, rather than the physical use of clamps.&amp;#160;Ending this form of extortion means addressing the fact that the cowboy clampers are only able to extort money because the private landowner has signed a contract permitting them to do so. &amp;#160; &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Unless one is proposing to&amp;#160;ban the right of landowners to charge payment, why not allow those who have had vast sums taken off them (sometimes by extortion and threats)&amp;#160;sue the landowner? &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;If we lived in a society where ordinary folk, rather than just the rich and the reckless, had access to justice in the courts, I imagine a private landowner that allowed cowboy clampers would soon find themselves of the receiving end of a writ.&amp;#160;Unless a landowner had a specific and persistent problem with people parking on their land, they&amp;#8217;d not want to sign a contract with a cowboy clamper without thinking through the potential liabilities very carefully &amp;#8211; especially if threatening and aggressive behaviour were involved.&amp;#160;After a couple of court cases, I imagine the problem would disappear. &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Giving ordinary folk access to justice in the courts?&amp;#160;Now that really is a radical idea for the Coalition to ponder.&amp;#160;And it&amp;#8217;d solve more than just the problem of unscrupulous car clampers .... &lt;u1:p&gt;&lt;/u1:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1541</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1541</guid><pubDate>Tue, 17 Aug 2010 11:53:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1540</item_Id><title>Government appoints MP adviser - shock</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;In a surprise new move, ministers are expected to announce that a backbench MP will be made a government adviser.&amp;#160; The new &amp;#8220;policy czar&amp;#8221; will be brought in specifically to express opinions and make suggestions. &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Whitehall sources confirm the role will be&amp;#160;unpaid, and&amp;#160;are keen to emphasize that ministers will&amp;#160;not be under any&amp;#160;obligation to take the MP&amp;#8217;s advice.&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;This latest appointment is seen as a major coup for the&amp;#160;government.&amp;#160; It follows a&amp;#160;string of appointments that have seen&amp;#160;big names enticed into the Coalition &amp;#8220;Big Tent&amp;#8221;, such as&amp;#160;retail magnate, Philip Green, BP boss, Lord Browne, as well as Will Hutton, Alan Milburn and David Halpern. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;A government source said &amp;#8220;Giving backbenchers a say in government is a new departure.&amp;#160; Normally Dave just sends them a Christmas card and stuff.&amp;#160;Sometimes whips are required to imply that a job might be offered at some unspecified time in the future.&amp;#160;But even when we&amp;#8217;re left with no choice but to dish something out, it&amp;#8217;s vital not to give them a role that involves deciding things" &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;&amp;#8220;But the new politics means recognizing that our backbenchers aren&amp;#8217;t just there to work in their constituencies and then vote the way we say.&amp;#160; Their views can count too.&amp;#8221; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The new policy czar is expected to produce a major report that will look at the so-called &amp;#8220;policy postcode lottery&amp;#8221;.&amp;#160;According to some think tankers, the policy postcode lottery means those with addresses in certain&amp;#160;swanky parts of London are more likely to have a say&amp;#160;compared to others.&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Some special advisers, however, are understood to oppose the move, and will want assurances before the new appointment can be confirmed. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;&amp;#8220;Obviously we need to reach out to&amp;#160;former Blairites and celebrity people.&amp;#160; They are cool and having&amp;#160;them on board&amp;#160;helps show how much government has changed "said one.&amp;#160;"But if we have to start having backbenchers involved, they must not be allowed to disrupt the smooth running of government, or say embarrassing things, or get on their high horse just because they&amp;#160;got elected to the Commons&amp;#8221;. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1540</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1540</guid><pubDate>Mon, 16 Aug 2010 13:05:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1539</item_Id><title>Matt d'Ancona's curious case for a graduate tax</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;A curious&amp;#160;piece in&amp;#160;&lt;a style="color: #0000ff" href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/matthewd_ancona/7946148/The-graduate-tax-is-a-Tory-idea-whose-time-has-come.html"&gt;today's Telegraph&lt;/a&gt; has&amp;#160;(the normally brilliant) Matthew d'Ancona claiming that a graduate tax is a Tory idea.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;His justification for saying so appears to be that before the 1992 General Election a Tory minister privately told him he favoured such a scheme.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Before the 1992 election, you could find all manner of Tory ministers privately telling you they favoured all sorts of daft things - from joining the Euro to putting VAT on fuel.&amp;#160; It was one of the reasons&amp;#160;the centre right lost its way so disastrously in&amp;#160;the years that followed. &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;A graduate tax is &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;em&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;not&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/em&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;a Conservative idea.&amp;#160; Far from helping the Big Society, it would do the opposite, drawing civic institutions and seats of learning ever more tightly under centralised state supervision. &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Matthew is absolutely right that in order to&amp;#160;maintain world class universities, we need to raise more money to fund them.&amp;#160; He is also correct in his assumption that those who benefit from a world class university education should contribute towards the costs.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;But that is an argument for freeing universities to set fees themselves.&amp;#160;That way the extra money is collected by universities for courses provided by&amp;#160;universities&amp;#160;without&amp;#160;having to have politicians,&amp;#160;quangocrats and the architecture of Big Government get in the way.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: Verdana; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;It is certainly not an argument for raising the tax burden on the most productive&amp;#160;part of the work force in perpetuity , and making universities eternally dependent on state-hand outs . &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1539</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1539</guid><pubDate>Sun, 15 Aug 2010 10:45:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1538</item_Id><title>Decentralising from the centre: the limits to Whitehall's localism</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Eric Pickles wants to ban local councils hiring lobbyists.&amp;#160; This follows his brilliant idea that councils should stop spending money on self-promotional newspapers.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Three cheers to such sentiments.&amp;#160; However, I'm not sure that a blanket ban from&amp;#160;Whitehall is the way to achieve&amp;#160;it.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;That town halls&amp;#160;spend&amp;#160;money on PR and self-promotion is symptomatic of a more fundamental problem;&amp;#160;a lack of local&amp;#160;accountability over tax and spend decisions.&amp;#160; Instead of further restricting how councils can spend money, we ought to be giving them much greater control over how they raise it.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;If a local council was largely self-financing, with most revenue raised from a local tax-base, local folk would not tolerate it if their money was spent wastefully - because they'd recognise it as their money.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Unless there was a pretty compelling case for doing so, spending on PR and self-promotion&amp;#160;would stop.&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;And because it was local folk on polling day, not remote officials, who&amp;#160;decided what did or did not constitute&amp;#160;wasteful spending, you might even see more people&amp;#160;vote.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;If serious about localism, ministers need to address the fact that&amp;#160;something like&amp;#160;93% of&amp;#160;all UK tax revenue&amp;#160;is collected centrally.&amp;#160; With so&amp;#160;little raised locally,&amp;#160;folk have less&amp;#160;sense of ownership over what the town hall does with it.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;By imposing (yet another)&amp;#160;restriction on what local authorities can do with public money, Whitehall is once again saying that they&amp;#160;are better able to decide&amp;#160;than&amp;#160;local people.&amp;#160; Where&amp;#8217;s the localism in that? &amp;#160;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;In the early 1970s, a Conservative government came to office intending to decentralise control over the economy (Selsdon man).&amp;#160;They soon discovered that you cannot easily decentralise from the centre.&amp;#160;You cannot use the levers of executive power to hand power away.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;(PS. For ideas on how&amp;#160;in government one might hand power away, see the ironically titled book, &lt;em&gt;The Plan&lt;/em&gt;.)&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;&amp;#160;&lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1538</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1538</guid><pubDate>Sat, 14 Aug 2010 15:11:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1537</item_Id><title>John Redwood's blog</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;On quiet Fridays &amp;#8211; or when charging around the constituency, as I am today - I often link to other blogs.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Today I link to &lt;a style="color: #0000ff" href="http://www.johnredwoodsdiary.com/?p=6803"&gt;another&amp;#160;excellent blog entry by John Redwood&lt;/a&gt;, my highly respected colleague.&amp;#160; He makes some points that those who merely rehash&amp;#160;the tried-but-failed King Charles Street orthodoxy about Britain and the EU would do well read.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;a href="http://www.johnredwoodsdiary.com/?p=6803"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: #0000ff; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Read it here&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/a&gt;.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1537</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1537</guid><pubDate>Fri, 13 Aug 2010 13:43:00 GMT</pubDate></item><item><item_Id>1536</item_Id><title>Fox reforms at MoD</title><description>
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Liam Fox is expected to announce &lt;a style="color: #0000ff" href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-10960440"&gt;major reform at the Ministry of Defence&lt;/a&gt;.&amp;#160; Good.&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The armed forces themselves, as opposed to thousands of MoD pen-pushers, are likely to be able to make decisions over what kit to buy.&amp;#160; Excellent.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Apparently, Lord Levene will head up a Defence Reform Unit.&amp;#160; Even better.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;In the mid-1980s,&amp;#160;Levene&amp;#160;instigated reforms that&amp;#160;increased&amp;#160;competition for MoD contracts.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Since then,&amp;#160;some of the&amp;#160;progress has been&amp;#160;undone by the&amp;#160;way that&amp;#160;the Defence Industrial Strategy has developed - and, some might suggest,&amp;#160;too close a relationship between&amp;#160;buyer (MoD) and&amp;#160;seller (contractors).&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;The contractors can be relied upon to argue against it, but&amp;#160;Levene seems to&amp;#160;understand how&amp;#160;competition brings&amp;#160;better value from&amp;#160;a finite defence&amp;#160;budget.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&amp;#160; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #ff0000"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; font-size: 11pt"&gt;If Levene is to&amp;#160;bring real choice and competition to defence procurement,&amp;#160;it is hard to see how&amp;#160;the current protectionist system&amp;#160;can survive.&amp;#160; &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+ &lt;p&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #ff0000"&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; color: black; font-size: 11pt"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="color: #ff0000"&gt;
+ &lt;span style="font-family: 'Verdana', 'sans-serif'; font-size: 11pt"&gt;Good bye protectionist purchasing and&amp;#160;hello off-the-shelf?&amp;#160; We shall soon see.&amp;#160;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/span&gt;&amp;#160;&lt;/span&gt;
+ &lt;/p&gt;
+</description><link>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1536</link><guid>http://www.talkcarswell.com/show.aspx?id=1536</guid><pubDate>Fri, 13 Aug 2010 07:35:00 GMT</pubDate></item></channel></rss>
View
23 t/mprc
@@ -0,0 +1,23 @@
+title: planet test
+description: Testing stuff
+url: http://theplanetarium.org/
+self_link: http://theplanetarium.org/
+agent: Testing Perlanet
+entries_per_feed: 1
+author:
+ name: Dave Cross
+ email: dave@dave.org.uk
+entries: 20
+page:
+ file: index.html
+ template: index.tt
+feed:
+ file: rss.xml
+ format: Atom
+feeds:
+ - title: 'con: Wycombe: Steve Baker'
+ url: file:data/stevebaker.xml
+ web: http://www.stevebaker.info/
+ - title: 'co: Clacton: Douglas Carswell'
+ url: file:data/talkcarswell.xml
+ web: http://www.talkcarswell.com/

0 comments on commit 2d17e7e

Please sign in to comment.