Wednesday, October 1, 2014

UKIP Trolls Lobby With Donation Damp Squib

Not content with inviting the press to a media reception in Doncaster and then making them pay for their own drinks, UKIP this afternoon dragged half of Her Majesty’s loyal press corp to Bristol only to disappoint them with a Thick of It-style non-announcement. Despite stoking rumours of another defection, in the end the press pack had to make do with Tory turncoat Arron Banks announcing he would be upping his donation to £1 million:

Not enough to knock Dave off the News at Ten, though a million quid will pay for a lot of posters…

There Has Been No Global Warming For Past 18 Years

Today is an inconvenient anniversary for greenies: as of 1 October there have been 18 years with no global warming. Weather satellite data collected by the Earth System Science Centre at the University of Alabama shows the earth’s temperature has “plateaued” since this day in 1996. Its director Dr John Christy says:

“The fact that no one predicted what’s happened in the past 18 years indicates we have a long way to go to understand the climate system. And that the way the predictions were wrong were all to one direction, which means the predictions or the science is biased in one direction, toward overcooking the atmosphere… Our ignorance is simply enormous when it comes to the climate system, and our understanding is certainly not strong and solid enough to make policy about climate because we don’t even know what it’s going to do”

The same climate activists who don’t want to talk about this data are moaning that Dave cut the green crap from his conference speech today…

LISTEN: Michael Gove Declares His Love for Dave

Via @JuliaHB1

WATCH: Cameron’s Impersonation of Hague

Sam Cam’s £99 Austerity Busting Conference Dress

Sod the tax cuts, as ever Guido brings you the important leader’s speech news. Sam Cam was wearing a new frock from Hobbs.

‘The Penrose Wrap’ retails at a austerity-approved £149, though if she bought it online she could have picked it up for just £99!

The dress is both serene and versatile, with the crossover detailing at the waist creating a slender silhouette, complimented nicely by the sleeveless and knee-length structure.

Sam accompanied it with an old pair of LK Bennett shoes. 

Tax Rabbit Saves Dave’s Conference

Guido has never seen a tax cut that he does not like so Cameron’s speech today was certainly lively. The hall loved it and Dave hit their sweet spots in a way he has not since before the last election. Personal allowance up, the threshold for 40% rate up from £41,000 to £50,000. More money kept in the pockets of millions of voters, but… 

Having said that, whatever happened to that last tax rabbit that the Tories plucked from a hat when in a tight spot? Inheritance tax threshold up to a million? 2007? Ring any bells? Guido will believe it when he sees it… 

It may unravel and billions in cuts will have to be found to pay for it all, but in terms of strategy it’s exactly what the Tories needed to do. After last week’s eighty minute snoozefest from Ed Miliband, it’s tough to see how Labour can avoid responding to these pledges directly. UKIP and the LibDems will moan that their ideas have been lifted, which will further please the blues. Over to you Ed…

 

UKIP Banks on Mystery Donation Figure…
…and Don’t Mention His Mrs and Mike Hancock

There is some bafflement in Tory circles this morning over from where exactly UKIP have plucked the quarter of a million pound figure for defector Arron Bank’s donations to the Conservative Party since 2005. A hungover scan of the Electoral Commission website by Guido shows only two donations of £25,000 from Banks to two Tory branches since Cameron became leader: Thornbury & Yate and Northavon, and no money to the central party. Which makes the £250,000 being punted on the news channels look a little iffy.

Leaving that aside this initial confusion while it’s investigated, what will Arron Banks’ new friends at UKIP have to say about his wife’s somewhat mysterious acquisition of the right to stay in the UK? Banks married Ekaterina Paderina in 2001, who regular readers will remember was a good chum of LibDem turbo-perve Mike Hancock:

“Miss Paderina came to Britain from Ekaterinburg in eastern Russia on a student visa in the late 1990s. In November 1998 she met and married Eric Butler a retired merchant seaman from Portsmouth, who was more than twice her age. Immigration officials were suspicious about the marriage and Miss Paderina was informed she could face deportation. But after seeking help from their local MP, Mr Hancock, Miss Paderina was allowed to stay in Britain, despite her marriage to Mr Butler allegedly lasting just three months.”

According to Paderina’s ex, Handy-cock “went out of his way to help the blonde Russian after she paid several visits to his constituency office.” Rather awkwardly for Banks, Hancock’s seat is very high up the list of UKIP targets that he’s now funding… 

UPDATE: UKIP sources are confident of the figure. They immediately point to an outstanding loan from 2007 of £75,000 from Banks’ Panacea Finance to the Thornbury association, as well as the £50,000 given in his own name. So that’s halfway there then…

Thin Purple Line: Labour UKIP Attack Tempts Fate

Labour are going big on their ‘UKIP are more Tory than the Tories’ line this morning following the defection of Tory donor Arron Banks to Nigel Farage’s party. Attack dog Michael Dugher tells the Guardian:

“David Cameron is haemorrhaging support and his authority is ebbing away. He can’t control his party, who clearly have no confidence in his leadership. And once again we see that Ukip are reliant on Tory money as well as Tory policy and Tory politicians, putting paid to the idea that they stand up for working people.”

Continuing with the same rhetoric they used to fight the tanks on their lawn up in Doncaster last week:

The problem with this line is that for increasing numbers of voters in Labour strongholds up north, UKIP is becoming more Labour than Labour. Traditional Labour voters are already switching over, and Dugher and co and going to be left red-faced when inevitably a big name party figure jumps ship and completely discredits this attack. First Labour ignored UKIP, then they laughed at them, but what happens if one of their MPs was to defect?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Not So Pronto IPSO

IPSO’s Sir Alan Moses is in a rush for the three weeks-old new press regulator to get to the bottom of our Brooks Newmark investigation published in the Sunday Mirror. For the record and the avoidance of doubt, Alex Wickham – better known to our readers as WikiGuido – is a fine young journalist with more front page splashes to his name than some of his critics have had in their entire careers. His so-called sting – which was actually evidence gathering – was not an unauthorised operation. There will be no “rogue reporter defence”, it was an agreed plan.

Brooks Newmark was one of the founders of “Women2Win”, a campaign to get more Conservative women into politics. Newmark had a certain reputation among younger Tory women for being, for want of a better word, a bit of a creep. Think what his position gave him access to – ambitious, younger women. As with Lord Rennard that combination has obvious temptations.

MPs have been shown to be corrupt in the past by sting operations; Cash for Questions and Byers for Hire revealed MPs exploiting their positions for financial gain. How do our critics expect us to prove an MP is exploiting his position for carnal gain?

This was no fishing operation, it was a narrowly targeted effort. The Sophie Wittams Twitter account followed almost 100 MPs as part of the cover story – not to target them – which is obvious given that many of them were women MPs and the list included the Prime Minister. There was no intention to trap the PM.

If IPSO finds against the Daily Mirror it won’t prove it has teeth, it will prove as we told the Leveson Inquiry, that “media standards” are really a form of censorship that will protect the powerful from having their wrongdoings uncovered. This blog will never bow to the censors – we will continue to use subterfuge and clandestine methods to go after wrong ‘uns – there is no other way.

Brooks Newmark Did a Bad Thing

“What he did WAS quite bad.

Not because it was sexting, which these days is not uncommon.

Nor that his sexual behaviour might not meet with public approval, which these days isn’t necessary.

No, what he did was foolishly accept the flirtation of a woman, give her his mobile number, and then demand intimate photographs of her.

Not once, not twice, but repeatedly. He asked, requested, persuaded, induced and inveigled.

He was a man of wealth, power and influence, taking sexual gratification from what he thought was a young woman with none of those things.

That’s a bad thing. It’s a bad thing whether you’re left or right wing and whichever news outlet you prefer.

In any other job, on work time and the work phone, it’s a disciplinary offence.

In a government minister, paid £97,000 a year by the taxpayer to promote a more civil society, it’s appalling.

And that’s without asking how much it cost us for him to ping his paisley-patterned porn about the place.

The public interest in this story is not just whether a man who misbehaves in his pyjamas can misbehave in public office, although that is an issue for many people.

Nor just that a Government minister was opening himself to blackmail with his behaviour, which should be a sacking offence anyway.

It’s that a man in our employ, tasked with encouraging us all to be nicer and with making his party more friendly towards women, was so utterly awful at his job.”

What she said.

 


Seen Elsewhere

Longlist to Succeed Hague | ConHome
Newmark Nonsense An Excuse to Bash Tabloids | Spiked
Kay Burley’s Top Twitter Zingers | Buzzfeed
Why Tory Tax Cut Pledge is Good News | Allister Heath
ONS Admits Economy Stronger Than It Thought | Speccie
Cameron’s Concessions to UKIP | Nick Wood
#TM4PM: It’s On | Speccie
Path to Defeat Obvious for Both Labour and Tories | Rafael Behr
It’s Boris v May | Sun
Farage is Outflanking the Tories | Guardian
Boris is Right About Grammar Schools | Conservative Women


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David Cameron on political promiscuity…

“On May 7 you could go to bed with Nigel Farage and wake up with Ed Miliband. Not one bit of that works for me.”



cynic says:

Can anyone help me? I went on holiday a week ago and returned to find someone has pulled out the stake and Gordon Brown is back and acting as Prime Minister. What did I miss? Has there been a snap election?


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