55 comments posted · 37 followers · following 0

2 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Jay Singh-Sohal: As a ... · 0 replies · +1 points

Jeez, - if Singh-Sohal was a practicing Muslim waxing lyrical about how his religious upbringing made him the ideal candidate for West Mids PCC to work to restoring law and order to our region - I think half of us in Birmingham would be running for the hills right now. There are plenty of people raised in inner city Birmingham who have had the parenting and presence of mind to know to steer clear of illegal activity and the crowds who partake in it, who have NOT had religious upbringings. I think that is actually a hallmark of a greater strength of character - than those who state they rely on religious teachings and the guiding hand of a dogmatic faith community to instill in them knowledge of what is right and wrong. Given how it has been reported that Sikh Youth UK have disrespectfully treated West Midlands police officers who have attended community events for (recruitment and engagement) in the past couple of years - banging on about Sikhism is not necessarily an asset in the West Mids PCC campaign. It's good to see the Tories putting forward candidates from diverse background - but please lets keep overt proclamations about religion and policing separate - don't make your religious convictions your "USP" in your Tory campaign for West Mids PCC.

9 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andrew Carter: An urba... · 0 replies · +1 points

Not a major single city is named in this article that is outside of Southern England, shocking really given the most prominent and qualified Conservative Metro Mayor is in office in Birmingham. Small symbolic omissions like this says it all really about London-based policy-makers wherewithal to understand and tackle regional inequalities.

17 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - "Never forget that com... · 2 replies · +1 points

No sympathy for PM Theresa May - she has too much dignity to wish for that.

Only my utmost respect and admiration.

In the fullness of time her contributions to an optimum Brexit in the face of hurricane force headwinds will be recognised and appreciated.

The first runner in a relay race still shares the glory when the race is won.

17 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - WATCH: The Prime Minis... · 4 replies · +1 points

No sympathy for Theresa May, she is too dignified to wish for that. Only my utmost respect and admiration.

In the fullness of time her contribution to an optimum Brexit in the face of hurricane force headwinds will be recognised and appreciated.

The first runner in the relay race still shares the glory when the race is won.

20 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - In Dudley, I watch loc... · 0 replies · +1 points

If politicians in the Conservative Party (and Labour Party for that matter) can't deliver on their key policies and manifesto promises at the national level (delivering Brexit and resolving "burning injustices"), then these parties deserve to be dismantled by the public brick by brick at the ballot box, coldly and clinically (just how Brits do it best) - so that the complacent political establishment can be replaced by something new. Local councilors will be collateral damage - boo hoo , too bad.

25 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andy Street: Anti-Musl... · 2 replies · +1 points

Politicians need to appreciate that EVERYTHING is downstream of culture - the evolution of culture in the coming decade associated with the stronger emergence of what were minority value-sets on the back of changing demographics, coupled with the counter-response (or lack of) from the majority, will determine the sustainability of our liberal society in the West Midlands, possibly even our local Democracy itself. Urban Conservatism (with the West Midlands in mind) will only be successful if its advocates understand that the movement's core goal has to be an ambitious one of formulating policies which steers cultures (including business culture, not just the spectrum of societal cultures) into alignment with modern British liberal values of equality, inclusion, meritocracy, law and justice. Everything will spring from this, including economic success. Aiming for a tolerant society is setting the bar too low, we need to be building the kind of high-trust diverse society (which they appear to have achieved in cities like Singapore) that is usually emblematic of more homogeneous societies. Given recent events in our region, let 2019 be the end of the veneration of Multi-Culturalism, we need to formulate policies that promote Interculturalism. If the parents at Parkfield and other schools can sit down with teachers, and come to an agreement that upholds the teaching of equality (in all it's diversity) in an age appropriate way, whilst acknowledging particular religious sensitivities, and the protests cease - THIS will be Interculturalism in action. A process of two-way dialogue and tentative cultural convergence, not simply one-way indoctrination on a (for now at least) minority.

27 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andy Street: How we're... · 0 replies · +1 points

Improvement in Public Transport in the West Midlands is too slow. I live 1.5 miles south of Birmingham City Centre -during rush hour it is quicker for me to walk (about 20 to 25 minutes) than it is to catch the bus which runs past my home into the CBD - which is fine when the weather is ok (which in Brum is for 3 months of the year if you are lucky) - even then you are gambling with your life trying to cross the middle ring road, and during dark winter evenings risking being mugged or stabbed walking through the fringes of Highgate. And the metro will only be extended to the edge of Edgbaston (the name of the final stop is taking the mickey) - the route needs to be extended to Harborne, Quinton and beyond. The pace of change and the levels of investment in Public Transport provision in our region mean I expect I'll be drawing a pension before Birmingham has an adequate network - never mind "World Class". I dream of the day when the West Midlands has a fraction of the vision and the will to transform of self-made cities like Singapore.

33 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Nick Hargrave: Conserv... · 0 replies · +1 points

If PM Theresa May successfully delivers an orderly Brexit this year, I intend to join the Conservative Party (I'm a 39 year-old, BME, tertiary educated working-class Brummie - never affiliated to any political party, but Tory voting). If the Government fails, either revoking Article 50 or settling for a chaotic Brexit, I will be looking to join the centre-right or populist party that eventually emerges from the ruins of our present parliamentary system and the traditional parties. Now there's some motivation for the Tories!

39 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andy Street: In the We... · 1 reply · +1 points

"Creating opportunities for people to have non-threatening social contact with other (like sharing a meal) or sharing examples of how different cultures solve particular problems might both be more beneficial that changes to faith schools, etc - and less contentious to deliver, but crucially all of this work takes generations. There are no quick fixes."

Largely agree, it's about setting a direction of travel rather than indoctrination. We can either continue with policies that compel different communities to diverge and balkanise, such as continuing with mass immigration, open new faith schools, allow a two tier legal system to proliferate in the form of Sharia courts - essentially carry on with the tenets of Multi-Culturalism

Or we can adjust the arrow subtly and put in place policies that promote convergence and mixing between the majority and minorities - such as limiting uneducated low-skill immigration so that minority communities have less cultural reinforcement from their culture of origin, and to help reduce White-British flight - which compounds ethnic polarisation. Also emphasising the centrality of British values amongst ALL citizens, making them sacrosanct rather then something to be ashamed of.

If we do that we will create the environments in which the kind of non-threatening social contact you talk of between different cultures happens naturally and with greater propensity.

39 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andy Street: In the We... · 0 replies · +1 points

If you look through history when different cultures have mixed, Cultural Convergence is rarely a one way-street - look at the Romans and the Greeks, the Europeans and the Maori in New Zealand, or the Spanish and Meso Americans in Mexico. The direction of cultural inculcation is clearly stronger in one direction, but certainly not one-way. Promoting "Cultural Convergence" would include measures such as slowly phasing out faith schools, starting by changing the ones that are not rated Good or Outstanding into Secular schools. And also ensuring that British values (particularly expressed through British Law) form the bedrock of common ground - for example banning Sharia courts, properly prosecuting all those involved in FGM, forced marriages etc. But we also have to accept that British culture today has got some matters out of balance, and there are matters on which our society at large would benefit from looking at some minority cultures and learning from. For example, one of the reasons that Pakistani-origin Women in the West Midlands have much lower employment rates than their White counterparts is that they are at home investing their time in raising children rather than being in employment, along with supporting the wider family such as elderly parents - who following the mores of British contemporary culture would have probably been bunged in an Old People's Home and forgotten about. These are good characteristics. The question is though, is it these Women's choice, and how much is there a cultural expectation that prevents them from working even if they wish to? Essentially barriers imposed by their culture preventing their inclusion in the workplace. Equally there are plenty of other Women (and Men) in wider-society who would like to dedicate more time to raising their children (rather than outsourcing the responsibility to child-care facilities), and would like to reduce work or not work at all, but in the broader cultural context this is often frowned upon, and financially has become an untenable prospect, because we do not value child-rearing enough as a society. They also have limited choice given the necessity of two-salaries to provide a materially good family lifestyle. Cross-culturally as a society we have to decide what it is we value, more precisely, what it is we SHOULD value. That would be Cultural Convergence.