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Updated over every Wednesday night.   Your news...   Your words...

Issue:- 09/10 December 2009

Celebrity Photos - Ozzy Osbourne & Harry Hill
Photographs by Ian Fairbrother

WE keep getting in some fantastic celebrity snaps, so this week we have decided to run a few... These pictures where snapped by Liverpool press photographer Ian Fairbrother for us of Ozzy Osbourne in signing copies of his new book called 'I am Ozzy' in WHS Trafford Centre. The other shots are by our pap Ian of TV's funny man Harry Hill at his book signing also in Manchester's Trafford Centre over the last week. If you know about a celebrity being out and about, then let us know... We will set Ian on the case to track them down! Thanks Ian for getting these fantastic shots yet again... One question remains though and that is... Did Ozzy remember his name when he signed your copy of the book?


PS. Note to celebrity readers... Don't worry we do not do true Paparazzi work just yet... lol

Liberal Democrat Euro-MP FOR , Chris Davies, writes from the UN’s Copenhagen conference on climate change

IT'S been billed as the most important conference in history but it certainly won’t be remembered for the splendour of its location. Outside we could be in the North West of England. The Danish weather is dull and wet, but not cold; 2009 is on course to become one of the warmest years since records began. Inside it’s more like the West Midlands. Think of the international exhibition centre at Birmingham and you have an idea of Copenhagen’s Bella Centre. It’s modern, functional, but not glamorous.

There’s space here for the 5,000 journalists in attendance, for exhibition stands, and for refreshment areas that keep the coffee flowing in cardboard cups. Most important, there are lots and lots of meeting rooms, the majority built from simple partitions that will be torn down when the conference ends. Ministers may deliver public statements in the aircraft hangar of a room used for plenary sessions but the real business takes place behind the partition walls.

It’s said that more than 30,000 people are accredited to attend but only a small proportion will be involved in the actual negotiations. This is a place where those involved in climate change issues across the world get a chance to exchange ideas. Environmental activists mix with executives from the oil and power companies. University researchers come together with financiers. There are scores of presentations on latest scientific findings, demonstrations of new technology, and discussions about action that will make a difference and create jobs too.

With the evidence so strong there is not much room here for scepticism. It’s true that even the UN scientific panel says it is only 90% sure that the global warming taking place is man-made, but what would you do if the pilot of the plane you were about to board announced that it had a fault and there was a 90% chance that it would crash? We can’t afford to take the risk that the science is wrong.

Some 192 governments are represented in Copenhagen but it’s impossible to have detailed negotiations between so many participants so they have organised themselves into groups. There is the League of Arab States, the Alliance of Small Island States, the Coalition for Rainforest Nations, and several more. The European Union is the largest group of all. In negotiations we speak with one voice, but that’s achieved only by daily sessions to thrash out positions agreed by all 27 EU nations

There is a sense that our world is small and we are very dependent upon one another, but self-interest is strong. The arguments are fierce even if the shorthand jargon of REDDs and NAMAs and CDMs is hard to follow. It will be costly to move away from dependence on power from fossil fuels, and there is also the principle of equity. Does an American have the right to release more CO2 into our atmosphere than an African? The poorer countries point their fingers at the wealthy:- “We didn’t cause the problem. You got rich by burning fossil fuels. If you want us to be different then make a contribution.” But their hand is weak; poorer nations know that they will increasingly experience climate change through water shortages, crop failures and mass movements of people.

The task is to persuade the world’s governments to agree by ‘consensus’ to take scores of measures that will prevent global temperatures rising by more than 2 degrees. Many scientists say that we must do more, that temperatures could rise by up to 6 degrees. And after that, who knows? Europe’s largest power companies have adopted a plan for electricity production to be carbon free by 2050. I asked the boss of one why he was taking this initiative when it wouldn’t increase his profits. He replied:- “I have a grandchild, and maybe she will have grandchildren of her own. I’m doing it for them.” 


DAVE Prentis, General Secretary of UNISON, the UK’s largest public sector union, has reacted angrily to the 1%, two year pay cap and pensions cap on public sector workers, announced in the pre-budget report, saying:- “I am not going to sign up to this. I know how our members feel – they feel angry and betrayed. It is just not on to make nurses, social workers, dinner ladies, cleaners and hospital porters pay the price for the folly of the bankers. The people who earn most should pay the most. Instead we have the disgraceful spectacle of rich bankers threatening to leave the country if they don’t get their massive bonuses. Where is their loyalty? In tough times the rich should show leadership, not run off to the nearest tax haven. We have no idea what inflation will be like in 2011 and beyond. Nor do we know what the future price will be of essentials such as food and fuel. We are on the same side of the street as our members and I won’t let them see their living standards eroded. Capping pension contributions will reduce the already small public sector pensions even further. The average pension in local government is just £4,000 a year and less than £2,000 for women. This predicted £1bn savings could end up being paid out as benefits to those very same workers to keep them out of poverty in retirement. We know that for every £1 a public sector work earns they spend 70p in their local community. Any squeeze on their pay will put a stranglehold on local businesses and services, cutting off much needed income. We know that if our public services are cut just when our communities need them most, the manufacturing industry will also go into crisis. Manufacturing is dependent on public procurement to keep going. Attacking public service jobs and pay is misguided. It will make the recession worse. It will undo all the work that has been done towards giving our communities world-class services.”


MERSEYSIDE Police are becoming increasingly concerned for the welfare of 61 year old Keith Finney, who has been missing since Saturday, 5 December 2009.  Keith was last seen leaving Smokey Joe's bar, Temple Court, Mathew Street, Liverpool City Centre just after 7pm. He had been in a number of pubs and bars in the Mathew Street area and has not been in contact since then.  Keith is described as white, 5' 10" tall, of heavy build and a round face, with a ruddy complexion. He has light brown straight, collar length hair, with a fringe. He was last seen wearing a cream coloured jacket, a yellow t-shirt and black trousers. Keith also wears silver rimmed glasses.  Keith is from the St Helens area and finds it difficult to communicate due to a stammer.  Anyone who has seen Keith since Saturday, 5 December 2009 is asked to contact:- 0151 777 6952 or the National Missing Persons Helpline on:- 0500 700 700.

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