An Expert View

News of Craig Oliver’s spinning has reached the Scottish salmon fishing retreat of Charlie Whelan:

Spoken like a true pro…

Just in Time for Tax Freedom Day

Tomorrow is Tax Freedom Day – the first day of the calendar year that you stop working for the state and start working for yourself.  One of the better received parts of the budget was the pledge of tax transparency – soon tax statements will come with a break down of how our money is spent.

If you can’t wait until then to see how your money is squandered, the Treasury have made a nifty app.

You can now keep a handy reminder in your pocket of how much of your hard earned cash is given to people who won’t work…

The Video They Don’t Want You To See

Warning to BBC lawyers: You’re wasting the public’s money trying to suppress video of two public servants discussing a matter of public interest.

UPDATE:

Well someone did…

Warsi Will Regret CCHQ Kicking the CAN

It all began with another Tory using a dodgy business card. When Guido started digging into the Conservative Arab Network back in November, it soon became clear it was going to end in tears. One of their directors, a lobbyist, came to Guido’s attention when his card had the Tory logo on it, despite the group not being officially affiliated to party. Complaints were made and the Party seemed to realise something was up…

Sources within the group seemed confident that CAN would be given official status, not least because its Chairman Dr Wafik Moustafa was a close friend of Warsi who was proud that she had lived in his house. Issues around Warsi’s expense claims were well-known in the network and voiced to Guido before Christmas and again in January. CCHQ’s rejection of CAN’s affiliation in March meant there was a risk of Moustafa going rogue…

VIDEO: Craig Oliver Rages at BBC’s Norman Smith

The Downing Street Director of Communications took issue with the BBC News Channel Political Correspondent’s coverage of Hunt. He didn’t realise the camera was still on though…

Oh Warsi

Warsi is in Malaysia, but has managed to write to the Lords Standards Commissioner to ask to be investigated for her rather suspicious expenses. A preliminary probe has been triggered, with the full inquiry likely to follow. Scotland Yard claim not to have received a complaint. Yet. Presumably one of the ninety officers from Operation Weeting could be seconded for a couple of days? 

UPDATE:

The question are mounting up:

“A Conservative spokesman said the peer stayed around 12 nights at the house over a period of about six weeks and believed she was a guest of Mr Khan, rather than Dr Moustafa. He would not say how much Lady Warsi paid to Mr Khan nor whether the payments were made in cash.

“If MPs want to say that the case should go to the police they can do that and they will look very silly,” he said. “It was for a very short period of time several years ago. She made a financial contribution around the same amount she would have paid for a hotel. Whatever agreements Dr Moustafa and Naweed had, that’s a matter for them.””

  • Where was the hotel she is using as a comparison, and how much did it cost?
  • How much did Warsi pay her Special Adviser Naweed Khan?
  • As a non-landlord this income is taxable. Did he declare it?

Blaming the SpAd? Hunt would be proud…

David Mellor on Dave:

“He appears to be rather a shallow, callow sort of guy who doesn’t have too many aims and ambitions and who can’t even get basic judgment calls right.”

Fine Gael Gets CEOs to Endorse Treaty ‘Yes’ Vote

Ireland’s governing Fine Gael party is campaigning for a ‘Yes’ vote in a referendum on the EU’s Fiscal Compact Treaty. Trust in politicians in Ireland is so low that they are getting business CEOs to front the campaign with endorsements claiming it will be good for business – despite the European Central Bank’s policies wrecking the economy.

Today Irish taxpayers are paying €2.25 billion in bond payments on unsecured bonds for failed private banks – some €500 for every man, woman and child in Ireland – a bad deal which Fine Gael voted for in 2008. Fine Gael are calling this treaty a “stability treaty”, it is in reality a treaty to surrender fiscal sovereignty.

Ahead of the vote in three days time Guido is trying to buy advertising in the Irish Times parodying the campaign with some CEOs who really are grateful to Fine Gael:

Incidentally the advertising campaign is “under review”.

Yesterday’s Daily Star Sunday Column Now Online

If you had got your Daily Star Sunday yesterday you would already be gossiping about David Davis slapping down Ed Miliband, UKIP’s intriguing new spinner and the latest Blair donation scandal…

Guido’s Sunday column is now online here.[…]

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

[…]



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Quote of the Day

Lord Ashcroft’s focus group is asked where each party leader would be most likely to go on holiday:

David Cameron: “Monaco”

Nigel Farage: “Blighty”

Nick Clegg: “Caribbean”

Ed Miliband: “The Moon, his own little world”

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