December 12th, 2012

SpAd Put Through the Mill-er

Accusations from the Tories that the Telegraph coordinated their Maria Miller expenses story to coincide with the gay marriage announcement yesterday went down very badly over at Buckingham Palace Road. Still smarting, they have thrown the ‘rules’ out of the window and published rather embarrassing communications between Miller’s people and the paper in the run up to the story coming out:

“The Telegraph has decided to disclose details of the private conversations amid widespread concern about the potential dangers of politicians being given a role in overseeing the regulation of the press. When a reporter approached Mrs Miller’s office last Thursday, her special adviser, Joanna Hindley, pointed out that the Editor of The Telegraph was involved in meetings with the Prime Minister and the Culture Secretary over implementing the recommendations made by Lord Justice Leveson.

“Maria has obviously been having quite a lot of editors’ meetings around Leveson at the moment. So I am just going to kind of flag up that connection for you to think about,” said Miss Hindley. Miss Hindley also said the reporter should discuss the issue with “people a little higher up your organisation”.”

Not the best way to try to fight a negative story and particularly chilling in light of the fact Ofcom answers to the Culture Secretary – the exact chain of command that would control Leveson’s state backed press regulator. Eyebrows were raised about levels of experience after the Adam Smith mess at Culture when Miller hired Hindley back in September. She had been at Prince Charles’ Foundation as head of comms after a relatively junior role in the CCHQ press office. A pretty awkward situation…


172 Comments

  1. 1
    Call me Dave says:

    I would like to use this widely read blog as a platform to announce how I intend to kickstart the economy. I will use a two pronged approach both being massive infra-structure projects …

    1. I will build hundreds of churches around the UK, called Church of Englund. These will cater to the hoards of Gay marriage requests. This will be pink pound positive in its third year.

    2. We will also build very impressive British embassies in all the major cities around the UK. This will employ hundreds of builders, not to mention untold numbers of pilgrims and box tickers when they are complete.

    I think you can see what I am trying to do to help the average man in the street. Remember we are all in this together, and on that you have my cast iron guarantee.

    Like

    • 3
      Lost in Clacton says:

      Will all these new churches pay rates ?

      Like

      • 5
        Call me Dave says:

        Look do you expect me to have detail FFS? I was just handed this by my handler what do I know.

        Like

        • 154
          My Excellency Curly von Camden says:

          Listen numbnuts, we build British embassies in other people’s countries. That’s a place called “abroad”. In return they build theirs in our country.

          So, if you are sending all our workers overseas to build more embassies, can you please cancel the silly toy railway to Birmingham as we don’t really want or need that either.

          By the way, we won’t need these embassies anyway for much longer as your mates in Brussels seem to be taking over all their normal functions.

          Like

    • 9
      Fuck Cameron says:

      Well you have me lost over this one Guido. WTF are you waffling on about?

      On a more serious note it is now obvious Dave is running the country as if the country were London and the center of the world.

      Like

      • 31
        Jack Newhouse says:

        Exactly, no hate figures, sex or explosions, this story is a fucking disaster.

        Like

      • 45
        Hugh Janus says:

        It’s really quite simple, FC – this inept minister and her inept spad saw fit to threaten the DT. For all normal human beings with an ounce of honour, this would be a resignation issue – or even a sacking if One Term Dave had any balls. However, none of the above applies when we are talking about the current bunch of arrogant, conceited and out-of-touch politicians currently infesting the H of C.

        So here you have it – and full marks to the DT for exposing this spectacular own goal.

        Like

        • 59
          Thomas says:

          Well done DT.

          Is it just the SPaD who must go?

          Like

          • Anonymous says:

            The worse mistake this country made was to vote for Blair. Even I voted for Blair in 1997. From Blair there was a massive leap in mismanagement of this country. Everything comes out is spin no minister takes any responsibility.

            I am not a fan of Mrs T or Major either.

            Like

          • Snake Oil tends to cling to the clothes says:

            I never voted for Bliar…it was obvious to me from the start that he was a “huckster” and Brown was incompetent

            Like

    • 22
      Anonymous says:

      This is why ministers need to be whiter than white. If she feel compromised she should resign as ministers and MPs are only there to serve the public and not to serve them selves.

      If minister or MP wants to make money then they should leave parliament and find a job.

      Like

      • 33
        well who would have guessed says:

        MPs are there to serve themselves, the public are only needed at voting time, the the rest of the time they get in the way and ask questions that MPs don’t want to answer as it might upset their masters or the company that has bought them, just for their intelligent business knowledge you understand.

        Like

      • 36
        Anonymous says:

        If Maria Miller wants an expensive house in London she should work and buy it.

        Like

      • 62
        Thomas says:

        There aren’t any jobs!

        That’s why they go into politics.

        Like

        • 84
          Anonymous says:

          How many “graduates” are chasing each job for which they are “qualified” for?

          Like

          • Facts that government ministers won't tell you says:

            On average a graduate can apply for approx 1000 jobs over 2 years before getting a job…of those applications less than 3% get a reply and of those only 45% result in an interview

            Like

          • Unemployment or rather not says:

            As a matter of interest a colleague has been made redundant and leaves on Friday. She starts her new job on Monday. People were queueing up to employ her.

            Like

          • Grumpy Old Man says:

            So all those highly qualified people should do as my sons have, emigrate to a country that needs graduates and earn what they’re worth rather than sit around on benefits and whinge. There’s fuck-all left for strivers in the UK.

            Like

      • 142
        Trevor Phillips says:

        Racist.

        Like

    • 40
      God says:

      I’ll get you for this

      Like

  2. 2
    Bluebottle says:

    You cannot get in trouble for telling the truth.

    You could be killed though but that would be murder .

    Like

    • 29
      Anonymous says:

      “So I am just going to kind of flag up that connection for you to think about”; sound like a threat. I thing special adviser should be sacked.

      Like

      • 38
        Nom Dom Nom 2 says:

        Is she handing out North Face Holdalls as Christmas gifts, as a veiled threat?

        Like

      • 55
        The public says:

        If Ministers have twats like that workin for them then they shoulldn’t have special advisers at all. They are clearly a waste of money as well as being active subverters of the constitution.

        Like

    • 50
      Anonymous says:

      culture…. ..anti marriage.
      media….. anti investigative freedom.
      sport…….. anti be a good sport and behave.

      if the Queen’s christmas message has been recorded then there may be a statement on all these subjects.

      in the meantime, the scary new BoE man states, let bygones not be bygones.
      ==
      ==
      in other news imagine if the nurse was going to be told that the royal connection with the hospital were to break…
      ___

      are we reaching a climax as we approach the 21st…will our awareness dramatically change soon after that. will a new way of living become possible then?

      Like

    • 121
      Eccles says:

      “I have a bit of paper what has the time writted on it”

      Like

  3. 4
    Myra says:

    leave my little sister alone…..or else..

    Like

  4. 6
    CCHQ Press Officer says:

    Where’s my post? I tried to put it up and a message said it had to be moderated (God knows why).

    Like

    • 43
      Living in 97.3 percent white Wirral says:

      My posts yesterday just didn’t register. I changed my user name or moniker or whatever and all was fine. Why?

      Like

  5. 7
    nellnewman says:

    ‘I am just going to flag up that connection for you to think about’ thinly veiled threat. And then I see the potty mouthed tom watson is at it as well with his threat to Guido ‘You’re going to f hhmm g regret that’

    These MP’s really do get above themselves. What happened to the days when they were regarded as public servants?

    Like

  6. 8
    Tuscan Tony says:

    Let’s face it, the state’s probably 5-6 times bigger than it was a century ago and we, mankind, aren’t 5-6 times cleverer or more honest. What do you expect with a couple of nice inexperienced lads like Dave and George in charge of a business 50 times the size of BP or Amazon and probably 100 times as sprawling and complex. It’d be the same with the two Eds, or whoever.

    Like

    • 23
      I don't nee d no doctor says:

      Ah but if it was the two Eds what would we get to know.

      Like

      • 116
        Tom Watson's Brighton fun says:

        That’s the point. Under Labour it all gets covered up until they are booted out and only then you realise how neck deep in the shite we all are. If they had their way with their socialist utopia they’d ensure they were never booted out ..ever.

        Like

  7. 10
    Steve Miliband says:

    Who gives a fuck really

    Like

  8. 11
    Kebab Time says:

    Fisrt!!

    Like

  9. 12
    Gay Dave. says:

    I would like to announce to the world that England is open for homosexual weddings.

    Like

    • 15
      I don't nee d no doctor says:

      If it helps to pay off the national debt.

      Like

    • 37
      Snotrocket says:

      And Eddie Mair, asking Mrs Miller on PM last evening, how gay marriage is to be deemed ‘consummated’, for the purposes of the law where marriages have grounds for annulment – was priceless!

      Like

      • 68
        Hugh Janus says:

        Yes, it was, and it seems that a gay marriage cannot be annulled in the absence of consumation. On the other hand, it sounded to me like just another minister floundering around and making it up on the hoof. Par for the course these days, she’s obviously been taking lessons from Dead End Dave.

        Like

    • 86
      The Church of England Militant says:

      Not in our establishments matey…the Government lawyers discovered that Canon Law takes precedence in these matters and that to change it you would require majorities at Synod in the Houses of Bishops, Clergy and Laity and as the House of Laity voted down women Bishops there was no chance on that so thus such marriages had to be made illegal in Church of England(and Wales)establishments.

      Like

      • 115
        Universal Hiss says:

        Dear old Dave. It will be illegal to marry gays in the C of E faith. Of course the gays can always trot off to the Quakers who seem quite keen.Not sure about mosques though.Might be a bit risky.

        Total cock-up or maybe not.

        Like

      • 157
        Clare Deloon says:

        Dunno about that. Seems to me half the vicars I see chuntering away on the box Ducky are as kw eer as a box of frogs?

        *That’s the jumpy type, not our cousins from Calais.

        Like

  10. 13
    JACK REACHER isn't a DWARF says:

    dO POLITICIANS HAVE ANY CONCEPT OF RIGHT OR WRONG ?
    cap lock !
    “People close to Miller point out that her arrangements have been cleared twice as being wholly proper,”

    Like

    • 16
      Scientology Security says:

      If you think you are being followed and people are taking your photo. You are right.

      Like

    • 27
      Henry Brubaker says:

      Lol, ‘Jack Reacher isn’t a Dwarf’

      Those where pretty much my exact thoughts when I saw the trailers. Cannot possibly watch that little shortarse play that role.

      Like

      • 158
        Clare Deloon says:

        Great books.

        Like Alan Ladd had to (and Sarkyboots as I recall) he’ll have to stand on an orange box to look the villains in the eye.

        Like

  11. 14
    Margaret Hodge MP says:

    It has just come to the attention of myself and my Committee that churches up and down the country have not been paying council taxes for as long as there have been records .

    This flagrant contempt for the well being of the people cannot be tolerated. It is obscene and immoral for some of the largest landowners in the country to pay no annual land taxes whatsoever .

    I estimate that over the years the State has been defrauded of twenty six trillion pounds.

    I am very angry about this.

    Like

  12. 17
    I don't nee d no doctor says:

    It’s all got rather messy between the press/media and the politicians. Revenge or stupidity?

    Like

    • 65
      The public says:

      The relationship is supposed to be messy, especially when our politicians try to steal from us.

      Like

      • 73
        Hugh Janus says:

        Not ‘try to’ but actually did, on almost the same monumental scale that the EU stole our sovereignty.

        Like

        • 83
          The public says:

          I stand corrected. It is hard to get out of the habit of a lifetime and hope that there is one honest person left in our parliament. Still, one has to come to terms with inconvenient truths and adapt to the times.

          Like

          • Hugh Janus says:

            Repeat 100 times after me: “The British politician is a nest-lining, troughing incompetent who lies through his/her teeth and tries to take us all for fools.”

            You are now forgiven.

            Like

  13. 18
    Spank Sinatra says:

    This has more than a whiff of the “Don’t you know who I am?” all over it and puts into sharp relief her role / impartiality when it comes to ensuring that the press has an absolute right to go to print on stories no matter how politically embarassing they may be…..

    Well done The Telegraph!

    Like

  14. 19
    I don't nee d no doctor says:

    Margaret Hodge is hoping her tax avoidance issue will just go away. It won’t.

    Like

    • 75
      Hugh Janus says:

      In much the same way that I was hoping Hodge the Dodge might go away – or be sacked – when her own tax position became known. Fat chance.

      Like

  15. 24
    I don't nee d no doctor says:

    The BBC News is currently bashing Heathrow and flight delays. Same old boring BBC.

    Like

    • 69
      The public says:

      Presumably their London based staff daren’t risk the train to Salford because of the wrong sort of frost.

      Like

    • 124
      BBC ignorant pigs says:

      Stupid fuckers. It’s foggy and the distance between aircraft is therefore increased.

      Like

    • 138
      The BBC causes severe mental illness says:

      One may suggest they want the planes landing closer together in foggy conditions, increasing the probability of a serious accident, so they can get a news story which will distract from the current buffet they are conspicuously avoiding.

      Like

  16. 25
    Steve Miliband says:

    Can people a little higher up your organisation do the next post?

    Like

  17. 30
    bergen says:

    Much as I despair of the thought of Edmil as PM, it is now utterly clear that the Tories will lose, and. worse, deserve to lose.

    Like

  18. 35
    Susanna says:

    Damian Green has been got it. He has gone all pro EU.

    This Tory “Government” – & I use that in its loosest context, never seem to fail to disappoint.

    Vote UKIP

    Like

    • 127
      Hugh Janus says:

      My thoughts too when I saw the piece in the DT this morning. This was his conversion on the road from Downing Street. Presumably they Photoshopped out the bruises.

      Like

  19. 39
    Centre Parting says:

    Clifford v Burrell – how the hell do we decide between those two?

    Like

  20. 42
    Grumpy Old Man says:

    Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent. Apparently, in the Ministry of Culture, an Orwellian title if ever there was one, the threat of violence is the first refuge of the totally clueless.

    Like

  21. 46
    Time to Act. says:

    Is there any Tory M.P. who has enough spirit and and determination to resign from the Conservative Party and join UKIP over the same Sex Marriage issue?

    Come on guys, just one of you to start with. You will be amazed at the support you will get, including from Labour supporters of the traditional family in your constituency.

    Like

  22. 49
    Tom Watson says:

    I’m not fat. I’m just easy to see.

    Like

  23. 51
    Meanwhile says:

    The number of people out of work fell by 82,000 between August and October, to 2.51 million, official figures have shown.

    Total pay was up 1.8% compared with the same period last year.

    Fuck you Balls, and you still wanna give the sick, lame & lazy bastards 3%plus……..

    Like

    • 66
      Loopy Lou says:

      So unemployment is falling yet GDP is in decline .

      A very strange way to run a country.

      Like

      • 77
        The public aren't stupid every time says:

        The grey economy is expanding to deal with the drop in demand in the legitimate economy caused by the punitive levels of VAT and other taxes.

        Like

    • 74
      Handycock Immigrant Trafficker says:

      And most of the jobs are part time agency work for the public sector, below minimum wage. See immigration does work and is good for the economy. Boaz.

      Like

      • 87
        Gordon Bilderberger says:

        Well said Handy. My economic policies have been vindicated. Without this mass immigration implemented by my government and a few self interested supporters like your self, the NHS and local government would have closed down or taxes would have doubled, and public sector pensions can still be paid. The only thing that didn’t work is that they didn’t vote for us, but they did for you, how did your boys fix that?

        Like

      • 94
        Labour started the economic mess and the Tories are finisihing it says:

        Not to mention that we have some of most educated part-time shelf stackers in the World. You now need to have at least a degree at 2.1 level to get an interview for such prestigous positions in retail

        Like

        • 99
          Handycock (Teen Fondler) says:

          I haven’t got a degree nor even one ‘O’ level,’ in fact I have no educational qualifications whatsoever and I’m an MP, so there is hope for everyone. Boaz.

          Like

    • 132
      Living in 97.3 percent white Wirral says:

      Good old Ed!

      Like

  24. 53
    10 to base, he regular says:

    Sorry mate just coming round the corner. Your kebab will be here in 2 minutes

    Like

  25. 60
    Crispin Blunt says:

    So, how many of you righties secretly bang rentboys behind your wives backs? Come on, we all know how many of you are latent homeboys.

    Like

  26. 62
    Call me Dave says:

    An old lady just came arched back slowly past me to the bus stop, “I have trouble with my joints in this weather,” she complained.

    “I know what you’re saying,” I replied tapping my frozen spliff on the bus shelter.”

    Like

  27. 64
    restore the monasteries says:

    Apparently we are ,according to the Census,much more educated,
    apparently there are many more of us,apparently we are deep in debt and
    living beyond our means.I wonder why?

    Jacta est alea……….The die is cast.!!

    Like

  28. 71
    Westminster Gossip says:

    Well done The Daily Telegraph for exposing this sordid little mess and the disgraceful way Miller’s people tried to gag the story. What a loathsome creature the politician and their aides is!

    The Telegraph exposed the corrupt gravy train that was and is the MPs’ closed shop expenses claims process…

    Like

    • 80
      The Public says:

      Yes, credit where credit is due. Thanks very much Telegraph. it is good to know that some parts of the media are still reporting real news that has relevance.

      Like

  29. 82
    Abolish SPADs and save us money says:

    Guido

    Incredible that all these SPADs spend millions of man/woman hours intellectually masturbating with the medja….who are equally clueless (while going down the tubes in the case of the Dead Tree Press)

    Abolish the little buggers

    Ministers should concentrate on the job in hand

    And give a press conference once a month to report to the people (all medja included) on the progress (if any!) they are making

    When and if sanity returns to the British Government and Press that will be rhe end of these sordid little stories…

    Like

    • 85
      The public says:

      I agree. SPADs are utterly worthless and thier employment just shows that their minister is not worth their own pay either. Sack the lot of them.

      Like

      • 149
        Mr BumBum says:

        The Foreign Office is very, very committed to a regular supply of SPAD’s.

        They go through them quickly.

        Like

    • 98
      ah! monika's moniker is a gonner says:

      …masturbating…job in hand…

      Like

    • 165
      Bugsy says:

      Indeedy! And get rid of all these qangos and return responsibility where it belongs – with the minister and not some anonymous bureaucrats on far too high a salary.

      Like

  30. 95
    ah! monika's moniker is a gonner says:

    Truism of the Day.

    Google’s tax avoidance is called ‘capitalism’, says chairman Eric Schmidt.

    Like

    • 167
      Clare Deloon says:

      Yes, capitalising on thick (usually left wing) Ministers and dim ill-educated civil servants who can’t produce a very simple tax code which everybody can understand and apply.

      Like

  31. 106
    Angus Tickler says:

    She and Miller are threatening the press with regulation before it even exists!

    Like

    • 168
      Clare Deloon says:

      Looks like it is time for the real knives to come out.

      Get the popcorn in, this is going to be interesting.

      Like

  32. 109
    Wibbly wobbly Dave says:

    I will deal with this in my own time. I will be open and decisive just as I have been with all other issues which have come my way.

    Like

  33. 123
    Look away now says:

    In many peasant cultures, it was considered good form to display the bloodied bed-sheets from the wedding night, as proof that the virgin had been deflowered and the marriage consummated. (Probably still do, in the more enlightened parts of Romania.)
    What will then pass as proof in the case of Gay Dave’s kapok-cruncher scenarios ?
    Mind-bleach, please.

    Like

  34. 133
    dick dastardardly mp says:

    A person is guilty of blackmail if with a view to gain for himself or another or with intent to cause loss to another, he makes an unwarranted demand with menaces and for this purpose a demand is unwarranted unless the person making it does so in the belief;

    a) that he has reasonable grounds for making the demand and
    b) that the use of the menaces is a proper means of reinforcing the demand.

    This looks like a clear cut case . Telegraph should report it to the Met fro investigation

    Like

  35. 134
    dick dastardardly mp says:

    Is Maria the female version of Tim Nice But Dim?

    Like

  36. 135
    dick dastardardly mp says:

    I also see that video of a recent Cabinet Strategy Away Day Meeting has emerged

    Like

  37. 136
    Loopy Lou LLB (Hons) says:

    The Bribery Act .

    Perverting the course of Justice.

    Theft Act.

    Assault/demanding by menaces.

    A nice little Christmas essay for this years undergraduates perhaps.

    Like

  38. 151
    Taxfodder says:

    Sadly for the Telegraph and perhaps tellingly this story about the MP fiddlers (yes you Ms Miller) has disabled comment on the subject…

    I have noticed this with the Telegraph they are very selective about allowing reader comment as to when and when not.

    So…not that confident eh?

    Like

    • 152
      dick dastardardly mp says:

      They are worried about readers calling it as they see it ie that the Minister has no clothes. Such a sight might then cost the Telegraph 5% of its male readers over say 75 and clog up A&Es and morgues across the contry

      Like

  39. 153
    Tiny Tom says:

    Maria I’ve just met a girl called Maria and suddenly I’m £70,000 down…how on earth did that happen

    Like


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