Tuesday, February 15, 2011

+ + + Andrew Cooper of New Director of Strategy + + +
+ + + Former SDP Man Turned Pollster + + +

Larry the SpAd

Larry has spent the afternoon sleeping and scratching ITV’s Lucy Manning. According to the PMS’s afternoon update: “The PM has met the cat, he’s held the cat. It’s early days in their relationship.” Andrew Sparrow has been digging in the veritable litter tray of who is paying for Larry. Apparently it’s coming out of the Number 10 staff kitty:

“They tell me that Larry is “for Number 10″. In other words, he’s an office cat. And are the Camerons paying for his food? It appears not. The costs of the cat will be met by “Downing Street staff”, I’m told. The taxpayer won’t be paying. But the Camerons won’t be buying the cat food themselves either. (Cameron isn’t “Downing Street staff”.) So Larry is not an official civil service cat, and he’s not a member of the Cameron family either. He’s somewhere in-between – the feline equivalent of a SPAD.”


Well done to Dave Woolf who, so far, is in the lead for the Lolz cat poster contest and will be getting the Bruichladdich scotch unless something inspired comes in over night…

No Holds Barred

There was no love lost in the AV campaign today with No launching this morning and both sides ending up in yet another counter-productive Twitter war. Guido is looking forward to this fight becoming more than constant baiting online and the odd luvvie thrown in for good measure.

The No launch came with a push on how much AV would cost and what the money could be spent on instead. Their poster campaign seems to convey that Yes2AV want to kill babies. While perhaps a little too much hyperbole there, what was interesting was the dismissal of the notion that Yes could be considered the “anti-politics” vote. As the former TPA Director Matthew Elliot said, (from a podium very deliberately south of the river on the other side from Parliament,) where are the Yes team’s battle scars from years of fighting the establishment? They queued up to slam Clegg, with Robert Winston, who takes the Labour whip in the Lords, arguing he was not a politician.

A Battalion of Spinners

The MOD isn’t having a good day. They are rightly being hounded after news emerged that thirty eight soldiers had been sacked by email, Andrew Neil asked Patrick Mercer on the Daily Politics “Is the MOD run by a bunch of numpties?” There was an awkward laugh and a notable pause before the denial.

As troop numbers are being slashed, who is responsible for mopping up these PR disasters? Well according to research by Think Defence, a battalion of spinners. They conclude that there are 697 personnel from both the military and civil service engaged in MoD spinning. Perhaps Fox should look again at where the axe is falling. Maybe send them an email.

Breaking Mews: Larry Arrives

Happy As Larry

Larry the cat has left Battersea. The Prime Ministers Official Spokesman told the Lobby earlier that Larry is up for the job and that he had showed a very stong predatory drive and enjoyed playing with toy mice. No really. Next question, who is paying for the cat food?

UPDATE: Let the Lolz cat contest begin:

Bottle of Bruichladdich for the best one emailed in.

Quote of the Day

John Maynard Keynes wrote…

“By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens…. The process engages all the hidden forces of economic law on the side of destruction, and does it in a manner which not one man in a million is able to diagnose.”

The Sun’s Warning Shot

As the Downing Street machine spends the week rescuing the Big Society, The Sun have given Bob Roberts and Tom Baldwin an opening to whack Dave from the right.

After two years of slagging off Murdoch’s papers, it seems Labour have remembered that people actually read them. In a piece purporting to be by Ed Miliband on crime, broken Britain is being wrestled from under the government’s nose. Never would have happened under Coulson…

+ + + CPI 4% Inflation – Double Bank of England Target + + +
+ + + RPI 5.1% Shoppers Feel the Squeeze + + +

So have you stocked up on beans or gold yet?  Have you taken Guido’s advice?

Inflation is always and everywhere a monetary phenomenon, if we don’t figure out a way to exit QE we will inevitably suffer double digit inflation. This is not an accident, it is, as the Chinese have pointed out, the deliberate intention of policymakers in Washington and London to inflate away their debts. The cost of that policy will fall hardest on savers and pensioners who will be the collateral damage of this policy. It is entirely cynical of Mervyn King and Ben Bernanke to scaremonger by talking of a bogus threat of deflation…

Cats or Cuts?

In the stuff of sketch-writers dreams, the Downing Street rats were blighting television news coverage and looked like something out of House of Cards. And what better a way to distract from all those nasty cuts. Look, look, something cute.

Enter stage left Larry, the Cameron’s new kitty, who is arriving from Battersea today. The race has begun for the first picture, so don’t expect any other political news today.

UPDATE: Downing Street saucers have confirmed there will be a photo op at 1pm.


Seen Elsewhere

Rise of Angela Merkel | New Yorker
May SpAd Removed From Candidates List | ConHome
Clodagh’s Law | Press Gazette
Whitehall Bosses Ban Christmas | Sun
Meanwhile, in Russia… | Media Guido
Christmas TV Tips | Laura Perrins
Labour Marginal Fright | Lord Ashcroft
Osborne’ Real Deficit Reduction Record | ConHome
Blameronism | Peter Oborne
Everyone Can Lose | Staggers
Splintering of the Left | Tim Montgomerie


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Labour insiders turn on Ed over Powell’s latest gaffe:

“When is he going to stop promoting useless people? He was warned about her.”


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