Alex Salmond has raised the prospect of Newcastle teaming up with Glasgow and Edinburgh to form an “economic powerhouse” pushing for influence.
The Scottish First Minister told an audience in New York that while he has “no territorial ambitions” on Northumberland or the North East, he does see the sense in teaming up with the region on issues such as High Speed Rail.
Mr Salmond said that plans to build the new railway line from London up to the North showed the bias in the UK, and questioned why the line could not be built from North to South instead, joining up major Northern and Scottish cities along the way.
That transport focus prompted one North East MP to last night call on the First Minister to “put his money where his mouth is” on dualling of the A1 north of Newcastle and through Scotland.
Speaking at an event organised by US paper the Wall Street Journal, Mr Salmond said: “I have no territorial demands but we have encouraged a borderlands initiative, about economic cooperation between the North of England and Scotland.
“The North East and the North West get the hind end of just about everything, the worst deal.
“We have a parliament in Scotland we have our own economic initiatives, that’s not the case for the North of England.
“What sort of initiatives could we have? Well, transport for a start. Fast rail is coming, the greatest misnomer of all time, fast rail in the UK means something that will take 40 years to build.
“But the important point is that it is being built from south to north. It would be a rather interesting concept to see it built from north to south, the advantages there of the combinations of the great city conurbations of Glasgow, Edinburgh and for example Newcastle, which would present an interesting economic powerhouse.
“So cooperation doesn’t depend on territorial ambitions.”
Hexham MP Guy Opperman, a campaigner in the Better Together group, said: “All of us would welcome any action by the Scottish Government to improve transport links from Edinburgh to the North East, whether that is dualling the A1 north of the border or a commitment to High Speed rail from Edinburgh to Newcastle.
“But I would urge Mr Salmond to put his money where his mouth is.”
In Newcastle, council leader Nick Forbes has already met with Alex Salmond in Newcastle to discuss High Speed Rail, alongside visits to Edinburgh and Glasgow councils.
He said: “I strongly believe that the North East needs to be around the table discussing how we get the best deal for the region after the referendum.
“The Borderlands initiative shows we’re working closely with Scotland on a range of issues, and it is interesting to hear how much Scotland values its links with cities like Newcastle. It’s not all just about London.”
Source – Newcastle Journal 12 April 2014
> It’s a bit early for an April Fool, otherwise I’d have discounted this as a joke…
A billionaire has compared the treatment of the wealthy to that of the Jews during the Holocaust.
Venture capitalist Thomas Perkins wrote an eybrow-raising letter to the editors at the Wall Street Journal, comparing the plight of the rich to the mass murder by the Nazis, called “Progressive Kristallnacht Coming?”… and the WSJ published it.
“I would call attention to the parallels of fascist Nazi Germany to its war on its ‘one percent,’ namely its Jews, to the progressive war on the American one percent, namely the ‘rich,'” Perkins writes.
Thomas Perkins, one of the founders of venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, was comparing taxes on the super rich to the slaughter of millions in the Holocaust.
“From the Occupy movement to the demonisation of the rich embedded in virtually every word of our local newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, I perceive a rising tide of hatred of the successful one percent,” Perkins continues.
“There is outraged public reaction to the Google buses carrying technology workers from the city to the peninsula high-tech companies which employ them. We have outrage over the rising real-estate prices which these ‘techno geeks’ can pay.”
Perkins ends his very questionable rant with: “This is a very dangerous drift in our American thinking. Kristallnacht was unthinkable in 1930; is its descendent ‘progressive’ radicalism unthinkable now?”
Obviously, there has been a rather furious backlash to the letter. “It certainly proves you can get rich without being very thoughtful, perceptive, or intelligent,” as one perceptive person wrote in reply.
> Loonies to the left of us, loonies to the right…and scariest of all, loonies with lots of money in positions of power… but perhaps there’s some clue to the motivation of certain home-grown loonies, like our own dear Iain Duncan Smith and his unfathomable hatred of “the poor”.
Source- Huffington Post, 26 Jan 2014