Iain Martin on the enduring appeal of “One Nation”…
“All sorts of leaders in the past have invoked one nation: Disraeli, Harold Macmillan, Tony Blair, Adolf Hitler.”
Guido has learned that Conservative MP Rob Wilson has written to Lord Patten, chairman of the BBC Trust, calling for an urgent, independent inquiry into what the BBC knew about the Jimmy Savile allegations and when. Guido has obtained the letter sent to Lord Patten:
Tom Watson managed to escape his own gate-gate moment when he tried to bust a young blonde into Labour’s conference hotel without credentials late last night. Although there is is no official police control around the Midland Hotel, stewards were having none of it, not even for the Party’s Deputy Chairman. Managing to show some restraint in light of recent pleb-related outbursts, Watson was left apologising to his young friend and promptly abandoning her. At least he can’t blame how this one ended on the Murdochs…
When you sit down to watch Ed Miliband’s speech at 2:15pm you may find that all of a sudden a funny feeling comes across you – the feeling that you’ve heard these very lines before. You wouldn’t be wrong.
This afternoon Ed will tell the Manchester conference hall: “My family hasn’t sat under the same oak tree for the last five hundred years. My parents came to Britain as immigrants, Jewish refugees from the Nazis”. Almost word-for-word identical to an article he wrote for the Telegraph in June: “My family have not sat under the same oak tree for the last 500 years. My parents were Jewish refugees from the Nazis”.
Always looking out for the little guy, Ed will give us an anecdote about unemployment today: “The young woman I met earlier this year at a youth centre in London. She had hope and ambition, she bubbled with talk about her future, she had sent off 137 CVs but not even had a reply to any of them”. The very same anecdote he used in a speech on jobs in March: “Like the young woman I met recently at a youth centre in London. She had sent off 137 CVs, and hadn’t got a single reply”.
Ed’s also going to tell us all about his favourite teacher today: “I still remember the motivation, the inspiration from some amazing teaching. It was a tough school, but one with order, because of the scariest headmistress you can imagine, Mrs Jenkins”. Just like he did in a party political broadcast in April: “We had an incredibly tough, incredibly charismatic headteacher at my school… nobody messed with Mrs Jenkins”.
And what about small business? This afternoon Ed will say: “The small businessman I met in July, Alan Henderson, proud of the sign-making business he built up over 40 years. Alan was ripped off by the bank he had been with all that time and has been living through a nightmare ever since”. The same Alan Henderson Ed talked about during a banking speech in July: “Last Thursday when I visited Alan Henderson. Alan, his wife Margaret and his daughter, Julie, run a sign-making company in Putney…a four year nightmare which has undermined the family business and still does today”.
Finally we have Ed’s famous comprehensive school education. Today he will insist: “I know I would not be standing here today as leader of the Labour Party without my comprehensive school education”. Just like he did in April: “I would never being doing the job I was doing if I hadn’t gone to the kind of school I went to”.
Turns out when it comes to Ed, we really have heard it all before…
He was the cuddly, smiley man of the people when he gave his speech to the conference hall in Manchester yesterday, but when the sun went down Labour delegates saw a very different side of Chuka Umunna. The two-faced shadow business secretary wooed arms dealers at a fringe event last night. Chuka even hinted that he would back the controversial BAE-EADS deal, telling representatives from the companies that: “I want to reassure you…we have an open mind. We see this very much as a national interest issue, it’s far too important to play politics”.
Chuka Umunna, friend of the man in the street. And the arms dealer…
Why Pollsters Could Be Wrong | John McDermott
Cameron Faces Vote of No Confidence or Rebellion | FT
Cameron Faces Revolt Over ‘Vow’ | Sun
It’s Time to Speak for England | John Redwood
It Was Me Who Taped Howard Flight | John Woodcock
Indy Editor: We Will Stay Afloat | Press Gazette
English Don’t Want Scotland to Stay at Any Price | Dan Hodges
England Must Have Self-Government Too | Mark Wallace
Next Year’s Election Will Be the Dirtiest Ever | Speccie
Chicken Salmond Runs Away From Sun Cabbie | Sun
Scary No Messages Don’t Add Up | Sun
Gyles Brandreth writes in his memoirs:
“Sunday, May 10, 1998
Early start: appearing on Breakfast With Frost, to be broadcast from 11 Downing Street. The Chancellor [Gordon Brown] is grouchily amiable, but so earnest — and still biting his fingernails to the quick.
After the show, he took us upstairs to his flat. He lives above No 10, while Blair and family are in the No 11 duplex, which is bigger and more like a proper house.
I was intrigued that, when he took us into his bedroom, the Chancellor rather ostentatiously opened the built-in wardrobes, as if he wanted us to see the women’s frocks that were hanging in there.
They looked quite large, but I don’t think they belong to Gordon. I assume they belong to his girlfriend [Sarah Macaulay, who he later married].
I presume he was keen for us to know that he has one — and that she’s not a ‘beard’. I don’t think he does anything without calculation.”