Tuesday, August 1

Businesses banging on the door

The famous front door of number 10 Downing Street.

As any succesful business person will confirm targeted activity is essential for success.
The Federation of Small Businesses, The British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) are interested in over regulation as they jolly well ought to be, since new regulations have cost British Business £50bn since 1998 and about half of the business regulations in the UK originate from the EU which in effect means that in reality most business regulation are imposed upon British business people with only the opportunity for token prior consultation.
The government now wants businesses to provide it with examples of over-regulation. The BCC asks in a letter published in the Financial Times yesterday, 'why should they?' Quoting the BCC's 2006 Burdens Barometer which includes detailed costings for specific burdens and also pointed out that government departments aren't following the rules when they introduce new regulations anyway.

Additionally the CBI has just produced a report citing examples of private contractors using local people to help improve local services, and saying that more effort should be put into publicising ways to give local people more control of services with less regulatory barriers?

Perhaps the FSB is indeed also banging on the door of the Government on behalf of small businesses with documentary evidence of the over bearing cost of regulation but it is other business organisations that are getting much more national publicity than the Federation. The BCC and the CBI appear to have a strong and well focused campaigning message on the issue. Does the FSB not want to be seen as being too troublesome, or is it a case the FSB has lost the art of campaining ?
These are questions that I would be pleased to ask the North East represent atives of the FSB but alas I am unable to do so since the Regional Committee have agreed to ignore my questions, despite the fact I am a Member. Apparently I have been 'sent to Coventry' at a 'kangaroo court' hearing in May; a sentence that was confirmed (again) in my absence, last week. Amazing.


Anonymous said...

If you bothered to read the FSB web site, you would find that they have been campainging vigorously on many subjects - or don't you bother since they threw you out of the regional and branch committees?
Their reluctance to talk to you probably has more to do with your stalking of the secretary of the Darlington branch to the point where she is considering resigning because of you. Telephoning her several times a day and night is out of order. The Darlington branch need more dedicated officials like her, yet you are making her life a misery with your actions.
The FSB don't want you - get over it and find something more useful to do.

Peter Troy said...

Point 1. I read the FSB web site in detail yesterday as I do once a week. The point I am making in my piece is that other business organisations are making the running on small business issues in the national media; not regrettably the FSB.

Point 2 .I resigned as Chairman of the Darlington Branch in Feb 05 and consequently the Regional Committee.I most definitely was not thrown out as the letter I received from the Regional Secretary confirms.

Point 3 Your comment regarding stalking the Darlington Secretary is libellous. If you had the courage to add your name to your comments I would without doubt take legal proceedings against you. As you don't have that courage my comment is that your remark is pure bollocks. In any event Mrs Musgrove is a big girl and able to voice her own opinions.Evidence of the contempt that I have for your comments is the fact that I have not deleted your posting.

Point 4. My comments on the FSB are in general terms that it can and should be more effective; ''going away'' is not an option for me. I am an FSB member who is keen to see that the FSB is the voice of action for small businesses and not a cosy meeting option for Government Ministers and their lackeys.

Diane Ellis said...

To anonymous FSB Member

Just how anonymous, well you must be a member of that small minded grouping of new labour acolytes that calls itself the North East Regional Committee. They are the only grouping of FSB members that feel threatened by Peter Troy. Why threatened, well let us examine the facts, While Peter was Chairman of the Darlington Branch it was the most successful Branch in the region, in respect of the numbers attending, the issues tackled, and the publicity gained for the FSB. Peter’s questions to the NE FSB have been relevant to small businesses and to what the FSB is doing. These questions go unanswered or fudged, why do you suppose that is?

The NE Committee for many years has had an element within that has allowed their ego to get in the way of what it was formed for –that being the support of the membership in the North East.

What right do I have to say these things – I am past member of that committee as Darlington Branch Secretary. I walked out unable to stomach the self interest, their back- stabbing and their total lack of understanding of small business issues.

Now, anonymous, or should I call you, coward, I am prepared to stand up and be counted as one of the majority of FSB members that believe in the actual ethos of the FSB which is to protect and promote the interest of small businesses.

That an FSB member under the cover of an anonymous posting you uses this vehicle to libel another member in such a way is so totally abhorrent but it is the sought of thing that over the past 8/9 years I have come to expect from the North East FSB. Self interest, egotism, nastiness, slander, libel, you anonymous epitomize what is rotten in the North East FSB cabal.

Anonymous said...

Point 1. As you've read the site, you'll agree that they are very busy. I've seen several press releases in recent weeks which never made it into print. Please don't take their successes away from them because it seems to me that the political press don't like pointing out the acheivements of a non political organisation.

Point 2. Jumped before you were pushed? I will accept that you resigned but reports abound that you also tried to persuade the rest of the Darlington committee to also resign. Thankfully for the branch, they didn't.

Point 3. For something to be libellous, it has to be untrue. Calling this lady up to 20 times a day at all hours isn't stalking? What name would you give it? If you can come up with an acceptable alternative, then I'll apologise for using the word but at the moment it seems to me to be the only one that fits.
Choose to ignore my warning over her distress and her resignation will be a bitter blow to the Darlington branch - a one you will find extremely hard to justify.
My guess is that using words like "sent to Coventry" and "kangaroo court" might be libellous in themselves - unless of course they are true.

Point 4. The FSB is very proactive with politicians from all parties and get their point across very effectively. To suggest that it is "a cosy meeting option for Government Ministers and their lackeys" is nonsense. (is calling them lackeys libellous?) Instead of constantly sniping at the FSB, get back to doing the constructive things you used to do for them (I have a long memory and remember them) - or do you prefer the much easier option of being a critic?

So pleased that you didn't delete my comment. Censorship over a difference in opion wouldn't become you and I do enjoy our little arguements both on here and in person.

Anonymous said...

Wrong on every score I'm afraid.

I'm not a member of any committee nor of the Labour party. I tell it like I see it - to call me names because my opinion differs from yours is a sign of the times unfortunately. (If I was a committee member, I would be very upset at you calling me a labour acolyte - as I'm sure several of the committees would be - I would get thrown out of my own political party)

We are in total agreement over Peter's past record in the branch (where I am a member albeit infrequently) but his apparent vendetta against the present branch and regional committees distresses me.
There are only a couple members of these committees that have been there more than 3 years so why compare them with a committee from several years ago. The present committees strike me as being good people trying to do their best. Do you have any evidence to the contrary?

Peter Troy said...

Calm down Anonymous, take my advise, think, check the facts and then write; in that order.

Point 1. The FSB just being busy is not the point or indeed enough, making relevant comment on small business issues in the MLM and not allowing the CBI or the BCC (neither or which are political organisations) to speak on behalf of small businesses is the issue. My overall point is that the FSB needs to have less of an appeasement and more of a campaigning attitude.The fact that the FSB's chief spokesman is also a Labour Party activist is the reason for the FSB's tame approach to the government.

Point 2. Three other Darlington Branch committee members resigned in the same week as I did. I was not pushed, if you knew me well you will know I am never pushed.

Point 3. At no time have I called Linda Musgrove 20 times in a day or any thing like that, you are writing fantasy and if you repeat such comments I will delete them. That won't be censorship; I welcome comment and argument but I will not publish comments that are based on fantasy or ill informed biased opinion. This is a political blog not a poor quality soap opera.

The Regional Committee of the FSB in the North East have done very little for the members in the past 2 years other than organise AGMs to get themselves re-elected.The past two NE Regional Committee meetings is evidence enough of the points that I raise.

As for my comments regarding '' kangaroo court'' and ''sent to Coventry'' I have made those comments in a formal complaint to the National Secretary of the FSB concerning the past two meetings of the Regional Committee (the matter is being discussed by the FSB Board today) you are well advised to check all facts with Linda Musgrove before making further comment either on this forum or elsewhere.I may well also be taking civil legal action against John and Pam Wright, I have been advised by a Solicitor that I have good cause to do so. If you identify yourself to me I will be pleased to send you copy of my correspondence with the FSB's national officers.

Diane Ellis said...

So anonymous you are not a member of the Committe, a point in your favour. How can I compare the current committe with those in past - quite easily. Having monitored the activities of the Regional Committe over the past years it is sad inditement that a number of the members change from perfectly reasonable people into self interested egotists.

Let us look at what the Regional Committe does for members, when has there been an event, excluding the AGM, where senior decision makers have been invited so that the membership could air their views or have informed parties give explanations of current legislation? Where are they in the press regularly expressing the opinions of the membership?

Yes, recently Stephen Alambritis was in the Region to address members, were you invited - no - it was a closed meeting for Officers only.

Now to the New Labour issue, The North East Area Poilcy Unit, the Members include John Wright (Labour Party) Pam Wright (Labour Party) Martin McTague (Labour Party) Maria Plews (Labour Party) and Bill Keenlyside (Labour Party) all openly admit to their political affliations. For an A Political organization I do not think this appropriate. All bar Maria Plews is a member of the Regional Committee.

Calling names, not really I beleive that if your points are valid you stand up and be counted.

As to a vendetta, the NE Committe has for years waged a vendetta against Peter - why? because he has raised FSB Policy issues not liked by the New Labourites. Examples - 1. FSB Policy on the Euro: 2. Fsb Policy Foot & Mouth: 3. Fsb Policy on Regionalisation. 4. Compulsory Metrication. 5. FSB Policy on North Sea Fishing.

Where was the voice of the Regional Committee - had a sore throat?

It is time for the FSB to look seriously at the Regional/ Branch structure, in my opinion it is outdated too costly and no longer relevant. One problem there, no Branches or Regions and nobody would be attending the National AGM as the majority of the delegates are paid for by their Branch or Region.

In conclusion I ask you to look very closely at what the NE Regional Committee does for you and your business and in particular, does it fight your corner against the current government's lack of small business knowledge and understanding.

At this present time the voices heard in the media are that of the CBI, IOD and the Forum of Private Business. Not even a whimper from the FSB neither nationaly nor regionally.

I leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Rosi Glytisine said...

Well said Diane.

Who is anonymous anyway ? Has he any idea of the nasty attack and viscous comments from Pam Wright at the last two meetings of the Regional Commitee made against Peter in his absenceand previously ?

Anonymous Peter is controversial and he puts his name to his comments. Anoymous should do the same as well as get his facts correct.

Stewed Cabbage said...

Stewed Cabbage said...
I have attended many FSB meeting that Peter chaired and organised when he was Chairman of the Darlington Branch of the FSB. All were excellent meetings, well attended and lively.
Peter frequently disturbs ignorant people with facts and figures,which is now the case with Mr/Ms Anonymous!

Anonymous said...

I am still to be convinced that Peter is waging nothing more than a personal vendetta here. His threat of legal action against the Wrights seem to point even further in that direction.
I too have been at many of Peter's excellent meetings which is why his current actions concern me. They are not the actions of the Peter I once knew.
Having 4 members of the Labour Party on a committee of 16 or so people does not indicate to me that the New Labourites are in control - although I do find anything to do with the Labour Party worrying.
Diane. The issues you mention all seem rather dated and before the days of the present committees. Are they mentioned on this blog? I would be interested in finding out more.
I suspect that my opinions on some of them will be at odds with Peters so I'll jump in first
1. FSB Policy on the Euro: No thanks - keep the pound
2. Fsb Policy Foot & Mouth: No opinion as it's now 5 years since the outbreak.
3. Fsb Policy on Regionalisation. No way, the local authorities mess things up sufficiently without a regional body (with power) doing the same thing.
4. Compulsory Metrication. Long overdue.
5. FSB Policy on North Sea Fishing. Do we have any members in the North East who are fishermen?

Anonymous said...

Rosi. Isn,t your name as anonymous than mine? Your comments about Pam Wright indicate that you were there at the time so thank you for giving us this extra bit of information.
What is becoming very clear is that there is an issue here between Peter and Pam Wright which the remainder of the committee are being dragged into.
Not a good thing

Diane Ellis said...

My last comment to you anonymous - as frankly I am bored of talking to someone who can see no wrong in a committee that takes the action of banning all communication with another member without giving them a hearing. Also the fact that the committee took this high handed action contrary to the Rules of the Federation, bypassing the D & D Committee and other FSB Regulatory bodies. They think they are above the rest of us.

Peter has not changed in his ideals and his whole hearted commitment to the causes of small businesses.

There is none so blind as those that cannot see

Peter Troy said...

Anonymous you really must think before posting your ignorance is showingvery badly.

Diane was refering to the NE APU not the Regional committee, which has eight members - half of which are Labour party activists in one form or an other.

Regionalisation - the FSB's line as confirmed at the 2004 Annual confrence is to oppose regionalisation - you have the wrong end of the stick, again. The point that was being made is that during my 6 years as Darlinton Branch Chairman I was castigated by the regional ccommittee and in particualar John Wright who is de facto leader of the FSB in the North East for supporting FSB Policy which John Wright was clealy unhappy about.

Re Foot and Mouth - I called for a public enquiry into the causes and management of the Foot and Moth epidemic, a policy that the FSB adoted at my instigation - perhaps we should disscus the long term effects of the debacle of the Foot and Mouth crises in any rural pub frequented by farmers in the North East, if you adopt the line of it was all a long time ago I don't fancy your chances of leaving the pub without a verbal beating up. Perhaps I should take you to the grave of an FSB member who blew his brains out because his agricultual supply business was ruined in 2003 by MAFF. Or the young Lady (from Sutton Bank) whose Pony was destroyed illegaly by government vets during the crises.

As for fishermen; at the time I wrote a 2500 word article on the effets of the common Fiseries Policy (publicity for the FSB at the same time) - which was published in the Journal (January 2004) - there were 876 small businesses dependendent on North Sea Fishing in the NE (source Government office of the North East)

Whoever you are, before I lose my temper with you crassly ignorant comments check your facts with Linda Musgrove as well as the FSB Nat Sec; and then telephone me - clearly you know my numbers.

Rosi Glytisine said...

Anonymous I was not at the committee meeting - I am, unlike you, better informed.

If you understood what Peter is about and had been invoved in the FSB in the '90s you would know the flack that Peter got when he chaired meetings on the FSB policy of keeping the pound in the North East, one was featured on national TV !

The Wrights and their fellow travelers were not happy about that. And now they think that they have got rid of Peter by sending him to 'Coventry'! Well they are about to get a shock.

lady from middlesex said...

l am not in business but l understand the point peter is making the organisationa that representsbig businessare getting more publicity than the FSB that represents small business the reason sounds like it is because the FSB is controlled by people that are supportive of the Labour Party

anonymous sounds like a small business person with a small mind unable or unwilling to see the big picture

Tony Wilson from North Yorkshire said...

The cost of Business regulation is something that is not discussed very often. It is not understood by politician and I for one as a owner manager of my own business like to see businesses organisations talk about the vast amout of money that most small businesses have to pay out in order to comply with the increasing amout of rules that impact on us business people.

Peter Troy said...

Anonymouse if you wish to continue to disscuss this issue my personal mobile number is 0780 342 0995 and my email address is on the top right hand side of the front page of the blog.

Postings are most welcome on this comments section.Any postings that contain threats or offencive terms will be deleated with contempt.

Sarah Hopperty said...

The Labour Party infultration of the FSB appears not to be restricted to the North East of England. In the summer edition of Resistance published by New Alliance there is a report that the FSB made a donation of £400 to Gordon Brown's local Labour Party in Scotland. If that is true non Labour Party members of the FSB should be asking some very pointed questions, Peter !

Joseph Blogs of Clapham said...

In the FSB magazine it is correctly pointed out that:

''The FSB points out that small and medium-sized businesses employ more than 58 per cent of the private sector workforce – almost 13 million people, with FSB Members alone employing close to 1.5 million people.''

At the general election, around 20,000 voters in each constituency will be dependant on the success of small firms for their livelihoods. That’s why politicians need to listen to the FSB’s voice''

As Peter is pointing out in his normal style the politicians are not listening so the FSB should very much be not only '' banging on the doors of government'' the FSB should be inviting politicians to their meetings where business men and women can talk to members. The best time to do this is at election times when for some reason politicians listen better than at other times of the year.

Peter Troy said...

In the North East the FSB did not organise any hustings with the candidates standing in the local elections.

When I asked why in May the Regional Secretary got very upset and proposed a motion to ignore me completely. Against the rules of the FSB the motion was voted on and passed. Amazing !

Richard from Durham said...

There was a comment here yesterday from anonymous confirming that his information had in fact come from Linda Musgrove.
Where has it disappeared to? Are gremlins getting into the system?

Peter Troy said...

No Anonymous Richard it was deleted. This is a forum for political discussion, tinted we hope whith a touch of humour and cynisium. It is not a soap opera nor is it a chat room for petty gossip.

Anonymous said...

Censorship is a highly valued tool of New Labour, You're picking up some bad habits

Peter Troy said...

Qaulity of debate is a much valued aspect of democracy.