John Prescott taking time out of his busy schedule to direct traffic in Hull. How the mighty have fallen.
Bad news for the Department for Education this morning, or so the BBC would have you believe. Apparently a “university think tank” says that “the system of planning teacher training in England has broken down and risks a future shortage of teachers”. Doesn’t sound good, eh?
What the BBC doesn’t tell its readers is that the think tank in question, Million+, is quite obviously a Labour front. No mention that Pam Tatlow, quoted a length in the Beeb piece, ran as a Labour parliamentary candidate at the last election. No mention that their chairman, Michael Gunn, is a Labour luvvie who spoke at their conference last year. Nor that interim Head of Public Affairs is pally with the Fabian Society. And certainly not that the woman he is covering for, Victoria Mills, is a Labour councillor in Southwark and a National Officer for Unison. This is the top story on the education section of the BBC website. It is a classic sockpuppet…
Viva Palestina, the dodgy charity founded by George Galloway in 2009 is under statutory inquiry by the Charity Commission for being dodgy. Apparently it has not taken long to work out it is dodgy:
“The charity, which supports people in Palestine, has never filed financial accounts to the Charity Commission.”
Just the casual 900 days overdue…
Parked on a double yellow line just a few metres from the Mount Pleasant sorting office, possibly the largest sorting office in the world, is this Royal Mail van. There this morning with no sign of movement whatsoever, blocking the road for passing traffic.
What could explain this prolonged period of inactivity? Take a peek through the window and all is revealed:
Roll on privatisation…
The High Court judgment on housing benefit is pretty sound stuff. Leaving aside that the bit where the judge claims the case “looks very like a list objections to the policy under the guise of a litany of matters”, Lord Justice Laws’ most important paragraph will be used again and again:
“…it is not generally for the courts to resolve the controversies which this insistence involves. That is for elected government. The cause of constitutional rights is not best served by an ambitious expansion of judicial territory, for the courts are not the proper arbiters of political controversy.”
He’s right. The only thing more dangerous than the rabble in SW1 are unelected and unaccountable judges siding with an angry mob. Taxpayers money is wasted on such spurious legal challenges.
Meanwhile, guess which phrase does not appear once in the entire ruling? Nowhere will you find the ridiculous term “Bedroom Tax”. Quite the opposite in fact.
Lord Justice Laws has ruled that these are changes to “a means-tested benefit”.
Amusingly he points out that this “is well known”.
Try telling that to the BBC…
Regular readers will remember serial idiot “Dr” Eoin Clarke. The doctor (of Irish feminism) was making predictions this morning about the spurious High Court challenge to the changes in handouts:
— Dr Éoin Clarke (@LabourEoin) July 30, 2013
So how did that go for him?
— Dr Éoin Clarke (@LabourEoin) July 30, 2013
Eat them Clarke, eat them right now.
The MacShane case has been adjourned, at his request, because he is on holiday. Guido will have to try that one next time…
GIST is the government’s new spending website, the beta version of which is up today. On the surface it all looks very sharp and transparent, showing you how much each government department has spent in each quarter and allowing you to click through to more detailed information. There is one thing they clearly don’t want taxpayers to find out about however.
— Cabinet Office (@cabinetofficeuk) July 30, 2013
For some reason there is no big, colourful box for the government’s debt interest payments. This year’s debt interest payment is £47.1 billion. Per quarter, that would be the fifth largest square on the table above. All we get are vague non-explanations such as “reducing the structural deficit in a fair and responsible way: £26 million”. Which means absolutely nothing. Hashtag transparency…
Still don't see the £5 billion that gets sent to Brussels anywhere on those spending graphics…
— Guido Fawkes (@GuidoFawkes) July 30, 2013
Denis MacShane is due at Westminster Magistrates Court today to face expenses fiddling charges:
“The charge is of false accounting, contrary to the Theft Act 1968. It is alleged that Denis Macshane claimed expenses for research and translation services carried out by a company that did not carry out that work. This charge relates to fraudulent claims with a total value of £12,900.”
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
Feminist War on Children | Laura Perrins
An English Parliament is Inevitable Whatever Happens | Alex Wickham
Union All But Over Even if Scots Vote No | Janan Ganesh
Unionists Outgunned | Times
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.”