Exclusive : Which? Spinner to Spin for Brown

Word reaches Guido that Gordon Brown’s new “Strategic Communications Adviser” will be Nick Stace, who is currently Director of Campaigns and Communications at the Consumers’ Association (Which?).
Gordon must be in a real mess as Stace is not what you would regard as high calibre – he so badly mishandled the whole Home Information Packs (HIPs) stuff that the Consumers’ Association went from supporting the government to half supporting the government, to eventually disowning the government plan. Or something like that, it all got a little confusing.

Also as early as next week a new Head of Press and Broadcasting for the Labour Party will be appointed – expect it to be an internal appointment. This follows the appointment of Stephen Carter over Damian McBride in Downing Street.

Gordon is said to have performance concerns about McSnide’s ever increasing tendency to be found propping up the bar. Guido sympathises – spinning for Gordon would drive anyone to drink…

+++ Harry Landing Brize Norton for Breakfast Tomorrow +++

Too late for the Taliban, just in time for Boujis…

Friday Caption Contest (Hain Rebels)

Labour Were Thinking What The Tories Were Thinking

Immigration minister Liam Byrne told BBC News this morning that the Australian immigration control model had been closely examined by the British government: “I think that people want to know that only those who we need to come to Britain should be allowed to come and I think a points system has worked extremely well in Australia so we have studied that hard, we think it would work well in this country.”
The 2005 Conservative Party Manifesto promised “We will introduce a points-based system for work permits similar to the one used in Australia. This will give priority to people with the skills Britain needs.”

Remember how the Labour Party made a huge issue of the policy and campaign posters, outrageously condemning the commitment as a racist dog-whistle policy. Less than three years later Labour is implementing the same policy.

UPDATE : Gordon describes himself as a Daily Mail reader in the paper this morning when backing their campaign against plastic bags. So he is actually thinking what Paul Dacre is thinking.

+++ Drudge : Harry Fighting Taliban Since December +++

Met Police Commissioner – We Are Waiting to Investigate Conway

Labour’s favourite copper has written to the Parliamentary Standards Commissioner to inquire about whether or not Conway is going to be referred to the Met. Guido is as keen as mustard on seeing Conway prosecuted, yet one can’t help wondering if Ian Blair would be so eager to investigate Geoff Hoon or David Blunkett, both of whom are guilty of fiddling large sums from the taxpayer.

The Commons Standards Committee, which investigated the case, has said there was not enough evidence to refer it. Blair hints that this is not the protocol that is supposed to be followed. Guido wonders if Sir George Younger is really qualified or motivated enough to conduct criminal investigations.

If Conway has done nothing wrong why was he suspended from parliament? Why are his wrong doings not ordinary matters for the criminal justice system? Do MPs think they are above the law?

UPDATE : Almost forgot, Duncan Borrowman, Conway’s LibDem opponent in Bexley and Sidcup wrote to the Commissioner in January.

Calamity Logic

Guido had his good impression of Clegg diminished during his leadership fight with Huhne, which he won (just) on votes while Huhne won on style and determination. Interviewed yesterday Clegg tried to justify wriggling out of his manifesto promise to hold a referendum. He claimed that the Lisbon Treaty was too “measly and paltry” to hold a referendum on. He was then asked whether the UK needs a clear cut definition so that we can judge if something is constitutionally significant and therefore warrants a referendum?

Clegg: “I strongly agree with that. There’s some good organisations, an organisation which I think is great is Unlock Democracy which is putting forward some ideas about how we could get some sort of logic into when a referendum is appropriate or not.” (BBC 5 Live, 27 February, 2008)

That would be the Unlock Democracy group which put out a statement on Tuesday from its director Peter Facey criticising the Lib Dems for refusing to back a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty saying: “they should back down and support the Conservative amendment.” Logical?

Sienna Director Did Dave Advert

Trendy film producer Matthew Vaughn, the maker of gangster flicks “Layer Cake” and “Lock Stock and Two Barrels” was behind Dave’s glossy new advert. Unfortunately Sienna Miller does not star in this production, it is just Dave and some groovy graphics with the “you can get it if you really want it” theme tune. In Guido’s dreams…

See it on GuyNews.TV

You Can Get It If You Really Want It

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Tory “Deep Polling” Shows Seismic Public Attitude ChangeStrengthens Hand of Modernisers

What brought about the unusual change of tone at PMQs yesterday? Brown was mildly bemused by the line of questioning. It confused Iain Dale so much he judged Brown the winner. “I can’t really understand the logic of Cameron asking about internal House of Commons issues when there are far more important things to talk about” blogged Iain.[…]

+ READ MORE +

Jim Murphy’s “Lines to Take”

The all-partyI Want a Referendumcampaign had a mass lobby of MPs at parliament today. The campaign is really getting under the skin of the government and particularly ministers in marginals.
If those people who travelled to London discover that they all were getting the same answer from their respective MPs they should not be surprised.
[…]

+ READ MORE +

Runaway Protesters

Right now anti-Heathrow runway protesters are on the roof of parliament irritating Ben Brogan and hundreds of referendum campaigners are lobbying MPs in support of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. No gunpowder in sight…

+ READ MORE +

LibDem Stunt Amuses

In Guido’s schooldays he had an RE teacher with the distinction of being held in contempt by the boys and the headmaster. We would compete to get thrown out of class and sent down to the headmaster’s office. The headmaster would invariably shake his head and send us on our way.[…]

+ READ MORE +

Police as “Judge and Jury” Hallmark of a Police State

That New Labour simply has no respect for civil liberties is now axiomatic and one of the reasons why Guido thinks that in a hung parliament, the Cleggies will be wary of a coalition with Labour.

Big Jacqui wants drug dealer’s assets to be seized as soon as a suspect is arrested.

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Show Us Your Expenses Nick

Nick Robinson seems quite chuffed with himself, having managed to provoke fifty odd MPs into signing an EDM after his well deserved dig at the Speaker:
THE REPORTING OF MR NICK ROBINSON
25.02.2008

Kilfoyle, Peter

That this House deplores the innuendo of the blog of Nick Robinson, the BBC’s lobby correspondent; calls upon him to substantiate the imputations he makes in his blog concerning the Speaker and hon.

[…]

+ READ MORE +

UKIP Handbags Swinging

Nigel Farage is threatening to sue the Sunday Times over the claim that he employed his student son, paying him out of EU funds. He admits to employing his wife on the EU gravy train but totally denies any gravy splashing on the boy.[…]

+ READ MORE +



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