PM’s Speech Report

Couple of  jokes in Dave’s Policy Exchange speech, the best of which was:

Dave also cracked a joke at Clegg’s expense, saying this was the first time he had seen the deputy-PM’s school (the party was in the grounds behind Westminster). Though it was surely not the first time Sir Michael White (in attendance) has seen the school to which he sent his kids. In the spirit of coalition, Miriam Clegg’s law firm, DLA Piper, sponsored the drinks. Muchas gracias.

Outgoing chairman Charles Moore, having slipped the surly bonds of of wonkery, passes the chairmanship to Danny Finkelstein, who is not giving up his secret day-job behind the Times paywall to lead the think-tank closest to Downing Street. Fink is a former head of the Social Market Foundation, so he knows the Westminster wonk world well. At PX he will be able to continue his ideological mission…

Charles Moore is going to concentrate, he says, on his Thatcher opus. Unfortunately Guido didn’t attend the night’s competing party launching the Mehdi Hasan and James Macintyre opus, Ed, the biography of the Labour leader. Oh well…

An Unexpected Disinvitation

Summer Party season is upon us. So Guido was shocked and, to be honest, a little hurt when he was told on the phone that he wasn’t to come along to tonight’s book launch for James Macintyre and Mehdi Hasan’s “Ed”.  What did they think Guido was going to do, take the mick? 

The publishers have subsequently emailed to say Guido can come, if he behaves, and doesn’t upset James Macintyre. Unfortunately we have a prior appointment.

Guido is off to the Policy Exchange party to drink Pimms in the sunshine, with the Prime Minister…

Quote of the Day

Col. Richard Kemp, speaking in Tel Aviv said…

“First of all, please allow me to say what a great honor it is for me to stand in the same room as those of you in IDF uniforms. You might think that you’re simply defending your country, but in fact you are defending mine, too. You are fighting for the whole Western world, and you are at the front lines of the battle.”

Is Ed Miliband’s Ideological Guru the Third Kray Brother?


Watching Newsnight yesterday, post vajazzle, Guido was surprised to see they had on someone who looked and sounded like the third Kray brother; suit, hair and glasses all looked the part. It turned out that he was actually Ed Miliband’s new ideological guru, Maurice Glasman, of ‘Blue Labour’ fame. On the show a Labour MP sceptical of Blue Labour thinking suggested it was sexist and jingoistic. A bit like the Krays?

There are more similarities between Blue Labour and the Krays:

  • Emphasis on respectable working class culture.
  • Rooted in the community.
  • Both advocate non-voluntary protection rackets.
  • Small ‘c’ conservative.
  • Aspirational outlook.

Presumably Maurice loved his mum as well…

High Speed Southerner Bashing

Seems both the Yes and No sides of the High Speed Rail argument are using anti-Southerner rhetoric to bash the other. The No to High Speed Rail crew say it’s a rich man’s train that will hurt the North, while the Yes to High Speed Rail campaign say Northern jobs are more important than NIMBY Southerners’ lawns and gardens.

Yes:

No:

It is as if both Yes and No are thinking along the same lines…

Manchester’s Half a Million Pilgrim Fund

52% of children in Manchester live in poverty, making it the third poorest place to live in Britain. Manchester City Council are cutting front-line services in an act of political defiance – rather than saving money on the bureaucracy. They are cutting 2,000 jobs in order to support their quarter of a million pound CEO and other fat cats. However FoI’s have  revealed a huge rump that could be cut in order to protect frontline services – starting with  the half a million spent every year paying staff not to work, but instead to do union activities. 

Last year £449,088.00 was spent on union pilgrims, taxpayer money being used to represent the interests of people who would rather see Britain go the way of Greece than push their pen for an extra year. Funny you don’t read about that on the Unison placards…

Silent Pryce Smirks at Points

Given Vicky Pryce is demanding that the BBC did not mention the allegations she made against her estranged husband as a condition of her touring the TV studios to talk about Greece, full points to Krishnan Guru Murphy for sticking the boot in:

Wonder if she smirked like that in front of the police? She might as well have winked to the camera…

UPDATE: Krishnan also asked “The Donald” if he was wearing his own hair. He explains himself here, must be something in the water on Grays Inn Road…

Video via Liar Politicians.

Dolly and Mandy Reunited

Mandelson told a Progress faction seminar at Portcullis House last night some home truths. “People will not support further tax and spend unless they can see clear value for money. Further enlarging public sector employment is not an option in the coming decade and we need to look to the real economy, to the private business sector, to deliver sufficient numbers of decently paid skilled jobs.”*

Among the Blairite acolytes (Rentoul was in the chair) was Guido’s old friend Dolly Draper. Westminster is seeing too much of Dolly. Mandelson told the Progress crowd “If I talk about the past it is to learn from it, not to go back to it.”

We can but hope…

*A co-conspirator points out that in an oddly Orwellian piece of censorship this “money quote” is missing from the official report on the Progress website.



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Quote of the Day

Former Labour MP Dame Anne Begg:

“[Iain Duncan Smith] took to standing behind me during Prime Minister’s Questions. He stood at what’s called the Bar of the House and occasionally he would lean on my wheelchair. Our working relationship was slightly fraught anyway because I’d been critical of him a lot. I wanted to keep that criticism a professional criticism, not a criticism of him as a person so I never quite built up the courage to actually say: ‘Please don’t do that.'”

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