On 20 Aug 2010 at 8:45am Magpie wrote:
The Times reports on 18 August that Norman Baker MP, a Coalition Transport Minister, was reprimanded by Downing Street for 'fuelling conspiracy theories into the death of Dr David Kelly'. Has Mr Baker not already taken enough profit out of this case...a six figure sum? Constituents of Lewes must not forget that, several years ago, Mr Baker decided to step down from the LibDem front bench to investigate the death of Dr Kelly. It angered me at the time and it continues to do so. Mr Baker was elected to serve his constituents and his Party as an Opposition Shadow Minister in 2005 and it was quite disgraceful that he decided to 'take time out' to write a book which ended up lining his pocket. I am afraid that Mr Baker could never be described as a good Team Player and I would guess that he is probably somewhat of a square peg in a round hole in his ministerial role at the Dept of Transport. Egging the Dr Kelly story all over again was unwise and Mr Baker deserved to be reprimanded but it simply demonstrates that he must recognise that he cannot continue to be a maverick attention seeking Mr Awkward now that he is a member of HM Government.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 9:16am d wrote:
He wrote a book? The swine! Quit your bellyaching and get on with enjoying your life.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 9:55am williamdyer wrote:
He has every right to write a book, and I respect that he made the sensible choice to adapt his workload to undertake it. We elected him to represent his constituency after all, not to the post of shadow minister for something-or-other.
That does not give us the right to demand his full attention 24:7.
Competing interests: NONE.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 10:07am sashimi wrote:
Magpie, Norman Baker was elected as the representative for Lewes in Parliament, not its delegate. He and his fellow MPs are supposed to act on their own judgement in the national interest. Like Tam Dalyell over the Belgrano, Norman thought something amiss had happened with the way David Kelly's death was investigated. If nothing else there should have been an inquest with evidence given under oath, as that is the law. No one can deny Norman Baker is one of the best constituency MPs at the same time. All MPs who have been anything other than lobby fodder for their party have a difficult balance when they become ministers. I've not read the Times story. But, getting ticked off by No 10 Press Office has usually been a good sign under the last four PMs. Maybe it's quite healthy for ministers under this one too. Ultimately it's for Cameron to decide if he wants Norman inside the tent or outside it.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 10:19am Pater and Boon-Nam wrote:
He should be whipped on the steps of his club!!!!! There again some MPs would see that as pleasurable I can tell you ha ha. Best, Peter
On 20 Aug 2010 at 11:11am Independent thinker wrote:
Magpie, I see you will be keeping this up for the next five years after all. As repeatedly requested could you please give your sources for how much money Baker made out of his book? You'll be taken more seriously if it doesn't look like you're just making up numbers based on wild guesses. I don't buy into conspiracy theories myself, but I take it you also condemn Michael Howard, now a Tory peer, given the following BBC headline: "Ex-Conservative leader Michael Howard has urged a full inquest into the death of government scientist Dr David Kelly." And also Dominic Grieve for adding fuel to the fire by saying he'd consider a new inquest into Kelly's death if Ken Clarke agrees to release the relevant sealed papers. Finally, I've googled every combination of Baker and Downing Street and rebuke and Kelly and found nothing at all from any other news source suggesting he was singled out for a rebuke. Could you please quote the Times article as those of us who don't buy it can't get it online? Hopefully we won't find you've gone and made something up again.
On a separate note, I see he's actually followed through on his campaign about banning clampers, which was good to see.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 11:48am Smiler wrote:
A couple of days ago The Daily Express reported that clamping on private land is going to be outlawed. Was that down to Norm?
Can I now park outside the front of Laura Ashleys now?
On 20 Aug 2010 at 12:47pm Clifford wrote:
You do seem a bit of a twerp Magpie. By the way, do you know the whereabouts of Jason Sugerman?
On 20 Aug 2010 at 12:47pm Independent thinker wrote:
Norm was part of the announcement, and I know he's argued against clampers in the past, so assume he had something to do with pushing the issue. Won't come in till 2011, and it looks like there could be an issue about clamping firms swapping clamps for unregulated fines which probably needs sorting out with some kind of reasonable cap, but it's a start. I'll never forget seeing a frightened-looking elderly lady sitting in the passenger seat of a car in front of Laura Ashley's while a large bloke was attaching a clamp to it one Sunday. And no, I'm not defending illegal parking, I'm just all for punishments matching crimes.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 12:48pm Hoodie Hugger wrote:
No it wasn't down to Norm. He's very good at figuring out which issues are about to be dealt with anyway and then saying something about them quickly so that he can take the credit. This is yet another of those issues.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 12:51pm Clifford wrote:
I bet not many people know there's a thing called a 'Baker clamp'. It's an electronic circuit that reduces the storage and fall time of a bipolar junction transistor; this storage time is the limiting factor of using bipolar transistors in fast switching applications. Understand it? No, neither do I.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 1:22pm Independent thinker wrote:
Interesting point HH, and always nice to see well sourced, carefully reasoned and properly backed up arguments like yours on here, rather than the usual partisan opinions dressed up as facts. Baker's comments about clamping came before the election when Labour had 11 years to ban clamping and hadn't, so fair play to him for spotting the issue was about to be dealt with in order to falsely claim credit for it. It means he predicted that the Lib Dems would be in a coalition with the Tories after the election, that the new government would want to announce a ban on clamping within 100 days of coming to power, and that he'd be a junior minister for transport and be part of the team announcing the changes so he'd have some grounds for claiming that credit. Impressive stuff. It would almost have been easier for him to have just believed in the cause and used his role as a junior transport minister to push for it.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 1:28pm TAFKAPS wrote:
I'm certainly not Stormin' Normans biggest fan however, good on him for exposing the Dr Kelly sham that the then government peddled. Without whistle blowers such as Baker, Governments would be able to literally get away with murder (allegedly). And as a lewes voter and resident I support my local MP pursuing this matter rather than towing the Con Dem party line!
On 20 Aug 2010 at 1:47pm Magpie wrote:
Independent Thinker. I would refer you to The Times 18/8/2010 (p7)...article by Sam Coates.. ''100 Things you may not know about the first 100 days''. The foundation of my original post. It is quite clear.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 3:24pm Independent thinker wrote:
Magpie, I don't buy the Times, and you can't read it online. Any chance you could quote the relevant section? Did it mention whether Michael Howard and Dominic Grieve were also rebuked? How are you getting on with those book profits numbers?
On 20 Aug 2010 at 3:52pm Toque wrote:
William Wilberforce was elected to serve his constituents and his Party and it was quite disgraceful that he decided to 'take time out' to help end the slave trade.
On 20 Aug 2010 at 3:56pm Magpie wrote:
Independent Thinker. All terribly easy to view on Timesonline...just search '100 things you may not know about the first 100 days'. For book profits, just search in the usual places and, if you get stuck, why not ask HMRC !!
On 20 Aug 2010 at 5:02pm Clifford wrote:
Magpie wrote: All terribly easy to view on Timesonline...just search '100 things you may not know about the first 100 days'.
But you know when you do that Magpie we're asked to pay £1 to read the item? I'm not really sure you are what we could call a reliable witness. And i don't know if you know much about data protection but HMRC are very unlikely to reveal the details of other people's tax returns. As i said earlier, taken all round I think you may be a bit of a twerp.