Experts have warnd that Brexit will only spell the end of burdensome red tape if British civil servants, guilty of heaping even more rules on top of European Union legislation, can kick their addiction to over-regulation. British bureaucrats have long been culpable of “gold-plating” EU law, imposing more stringent requirements on top of those imposed by Brussels. Gold-plating is EU jargon for when governments transpose EU rules onto their national lawbooks but cannot resist adding extra layers of regulation. Over the decades of its membership of the bloc, Britain has earned a reputation as an enthusiastic goldplater. While Brussels has laid down red tape, Whitehall has made it even longer and knottier.
A group of Leave-backing Conservative MPs is suggesting that European nationals should be charged £10 for a visa to enter the UK after Brexit. A report written by Tory MP Craig Mackinlay proposes a system similar to America’s ESTA programme. Mr Mackinlay’s report is being backed by the Brexit-leaning European Research Group. It is claimed such an initiative would raise £150m a year, which could be invested in high-tech equipment at UK borders. It is also suggested the system would help provide quicker and more automated border checks to “minimise travel delays for legitimate travellers”. Another claimed benefit would be a “wealth of information” to boost security and intelligence.
Women who blew the whistle on the culture of sexual harassment in Brussels have been accused of “populism” and damaging the EU’s image. Victims who exposed the European Union as “an absolute hotbed of sexual harassment” where officials and MEPs — some very advanced in years — would proposition, grope, and masturbate in front of young female staffers say the bloc’s institutions have been working to silence them and cover up the abuse. Senior staff at one EU agency who were trained to handle abuse complaints told The Times they were instructed to intimidate women who considered reporting their harassment to the media, as it could be “detrimental to the interests” of the bloc. “We were supposed to tell victims they should not speak to the press; if they did, the institution could take legal action since speaking to the media would be against staff regulations and could bring the employer into disrepute,” a source confessed.
THERESA May will be able to enjoy Christmas a little more after she managed the thrash out a last-minute agreement with the European Union to conclude the first phase of Brexit talks, but how will negotiations progress in the year ahead? After months of deadlock and intense all night calls in a tough week for the Prime Minister, EU27 leaders unanimously agreed “sufficient progress” had been made to allow talks to move on to the second phase. Now the next stage of talks will focus on Britain’s future relationship with the bloc including trade. So, where will Britain be in the Brexit process by next Christmas? First of all, the “sufficient progress” made during phase one of Brexit talks must be finalised, and there are plenty of technical details which still need to be agreed. The Prime Minister has declared the UK will leave the single market and customs union but questions remain over how full alignment between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland can be maintained without a hard border, which has already been ruled out.
Areas of Bradford, England, are No Go Zones for certain ethnic groups and the city is “heading toward disaster,” councillors have warned, citing attacks on a synagogue and white businesses in ‘Asian’ areas. Bradford Council’s Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee chairman Arshad Hussain slammed ethnic segregation and failed integration, and blamed political correctness for making the situation worse. Too many people are “scared to speak up in case they caused offence,” he warned, adding there are “many areas of this city” where people were afraid to go depending on their ethnicity — i.e. No Go Zones.
Tax-free vouchers like those used by parents to pay for childcare should be offered to encourage people to save towards long-term care costs, a company has proposed. Eldercare vouchers could be used to build up a pot of savings to pay care home fees in later life or for domiciliary care at home under the plan. Alternatively, employees could use vouchers to contribute towards current care costs for an elderly parent or another member of their family. Siblings could also pool their vouchers to pay care bills for one or both of their parents. The plan has been suggested by Busy Bees, Britain’s largest group of nurseries, which developed the idea of childcare vouchers in the 1990s that was later adopted by the government.
PEOPLE could be shrunk down to explore other worlds in a scene straight from a Hollywood movie. Many Brits will be settling down to watch Honey I Shrunk the Kids over the festive period, thinking scenes in the film are just fantasy. But boffins think humans could be shrunk in the future, and their life would be better. Though people could never be shrunk to the sizes of the kids or Matt Damon’s character in Downsizing, bioethicist Matthew Liao believes shrinking to a smaller size would help reduce climate change. Mr Liao has pushed for shrinking people by 15cms, back to the average height of 100 years ago. He said: “It turns out that 15 centimetres of reduction in height translates to around 23 % mass reduction for men and 25% mass reduction for women.” The technology needed for the process is already in use at fertility clinics, allowing parents to screen out embryos that have genetic diseases.