Václav Havel; Playwright, Dissident and President R.I.P.

Václav HavelYou may ask what kind of republic I dream of. Let me reply: I dream of a republic independent, free, and democratic, of a republic economically prosperous and yet socially just; in short, of a humane republic that serves the individual and that therefore holds the hope that the individual will serve it in turn.

Václav Havel, 1990 New Year’s Day Inaugural Presidential Address

The Guardian has the longest obituary of the Czech dissident Charter 77 leader who, following the 1989 Velvet Revolution, became president. The obituary is seemingly comprehensive yet politically suspect in tone, somehow neglecting to mention that Havel was charged by the Czech Communist Party with being a “rabid opponent of socialism”. Ed West in The Telegraph says he was one of the few who could be described as a political and intellectual hero. Havel’s life demonstrates that really great political change is the art of the impossible.

Havel was serious but not solemn, as can be seen from the signature on Guido’s English language copy of Charter 77, published by Index on Censorship in May 1977. Incidentally, Guido got his copy at an auction held in the heart of The Guardian building

Exclusive: New Miliband Speechwriter Deletes Critique

The Sunday papers are grim reading for Ed Miliband, with the Mail reporting the previously blogged criticisms of his newly hired speechwriter Asher Dresner. This morning  Dresner has quietly deleted the entries criticising Ed speeches from his blog to save his new boss embarrassment. As ever, in an effort to be helpful, Guido has restored and uploaded Dresner’s wisdom to the web here for all to read. The web is forever, not just for Christmas…

Dresner once wrote that

I really believe that the reason Blair was so successful was because he spoke to centrist majority….

Something that his new boss explicitly rejects, so Dresner will have to be clever in getting Blairisms into his speeches. Ed Miliband listens to left-wing wonks who think there is a “progressive majority”. Unfortunately the polls showing the Tories ahead suggest the reality is otherwise.

The Indy reports that Labour HQ is to be moved nearer to parliament, as if the 5 minute walk from Big Ben to Labour’s offices is part of the problem. The same article reports grassroots despair from former Ed supporters. The number of despairing former Ed supporters seems to be growing at an accelerating rate.

As Asher comes in and Ayesha goes out Guido has heard more about that much contested story from last week, sources say she fell out with Tom Baldwin repeatedly and that she is suspected of leaking Ed’s media grid as a departing shot. She has previous for negative briefing when she last worked for Harriet Harman,

This of course could be the product of an over-stimulated paranoid imagination. Baldwin himself is looking noticeably rough under the pressure of propping up Ed and getting cut through for his message. It can’t be easy to keep to a single line…



Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

Owen Smith backs one hour contracts but wants to abolish zero hours contracts:

“You need to give people a contract to say, ‘here’s what you will be working’. It could be one, but I’m saying it shouldn’t be zero, we should invert that emphasis.”

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.

Facebook

TRUMP ASKS RUSSIA TO HACK HILLARY’S EMAILS TRUMP ASKS RUSSIA TO HACK HILLARY’S EMAILS
CANADIAN “HOT” LESBIAN OIL ADVERT PULLED CANADIAN “HOT” LESBIAN OIL ADVERT PULLED
EVERYBODY’S INVESTING IN BREXIT BRITAIN EVERYBODY’S INVESTING IN BREXIT BRITAIN
EMPTY SEATS AT SMITH CAMPAIGN RALLY EMPTY SEATS AT SMITH CAMPAIGN RALLY
“AMERITUDE” TRUMP JAM DAD SUES TRUMP’S CAMPAIGN “AMERITUDE” TRUMP JAM DAD SUES TRUMP’S CAMPAIGN
THERESA MAY SMILING AS TORY POLLS IMPROVING THERESA MAY SMILING AS TORY POLLS IMPROVING
HIGH COURT JUDGE COULD CROWN OILY LEADER HIGH COURT JUDGE COULD CROWN OILY LEADER
Trump 5% Ahead of Clinton Trump 5% Ahead of Clinton
LILY COLE FRONTS BBC “CEO SECRETS” SERIES AFTER RUNNING COMPANY INTO GROUND LILY COLE FRONTS BBC “CEO SECRETS” SERIES AFTER RUNNING COMPANY INTO GROUND
Guardian Media Group’s Losses Total £173 Million Guardian Media Group’s Losses Total £173 Million
MCGINN WHIPPED LABOUR MPS TO “KEEP UP THE PRESSURE ON JC” MCGINN WHIPPED LABOUR MPS TO “KEEP UP THE PRESSURE ON JC”
VICTORIA’S SECRET LINGERIE AND 5 STAR HOTELS: WELSH GOVT’S £7.5 MILLION CREDIT CARD SPEND VICTORIA’S SECRET LINGERIE AND 5 STAR HOTELS: WELSH GOVT’S £7.5 MILLION CREDIT CARD SPEND
OWEN SMITH HIRES TOP PFIZER LOBBYIST TO RUN CAMPAIGN OWEN SMITH HIRES TOP PFIZER LOBBYIST TO RUN CAMPAIGN
HAMMOND FIBS AND SAUDI SLAVERY SLIPPED OUT ON DUMPING DAY HAMMOND FIBS AND SAUDI SLAVERY SLIPPED OUT ON DUMPING DAY
MATTHEW ELLIOTT ON WHY LEAVE WON MATTHEW ELLIOTT ON WHY LEAVE WON
OSBORNE GIVEN “SH*T” ROOM WITH NO VIEW OSBORNE GIVEN “SH*T” ROOM WITH NO VIEW
5,000,000 SIGNATURES: FEW POLICY CHANGES 5,000,000 SIGNATURES: FEW POLICY CHANGES
CORBYNISTAS USED CODE TO HIDE CASH-FOR-VOTES PLOT CORBYNISTAS USED CODE TO HIDE CASH-FOR-VOTES PLOT