Oborne Overstates Israeli Influence

oborneGuido occasionally enjoys a drink with Peter Oborne and he is one of very few journalists willing to take a stand that is not popular.  Like him Guido suspects that the threat from Jihadis-Under-the-Bed is a bit overstated.  It is a maverick view, though that doesn’t make him wrong.

Peter will, it seems from reports, be arguing tonight in a Dispatches programme that the influence of the Israeli lobby is too great in Britain and that the Conservative Friends of Israel  group (CFI) is “beyond doubt the most well-connected and probably the best funded of all Westminster lobbying groups”This time Guido sees some flaws in that analysis.

CFI don’t seem to be doing a very good job because the Tories, unlike U.S. Republicans, did not back Israel’s efforts to drive out Hamas terrorism from her border regions.  When Israel acted to defend itself from terrorist rocket attacks, Hague endorsed an Arab-backed UN Security Council call for a ceasefire and called for “war crimes” allegations against Israel to be investigated.  The shadow foreign-secretary is not exactly a patsy for Israel.

ira-ploThe truth is that a Conservative Friends of Palestine group was launched in 1991 at the Conservative Party conference in Blackpool.  It bombed.  The meeting was addressed by the PLO’s London representative, Faisal Oweida.  The PLO were anti-imperialist allies of the IRA who only attended Tory Conference venues to bomb them.  Hardly likely to encourage friendship…

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

Page3 Cameron

Sunday Sleaze

Sunday Sleaze

byersSteven Byers is standing down as an MP after 30 years of troughing, coincidentally leaked details show that he claimed £125,000 in second home expenses over five years for a flat wholly owned by his lover.  So effectively he authorised payments to his other half. In the private sector he would be fired and probably prosecuted.   The attitude of his fellow parliamentarians is merely “fill yer boots” and retire on a gold plated index-linked pension.

pork-spotlightLabour Party Baroness Whitaker has fiddled £150,000 in expenses by renting a country cottage from Conservative Lord Renton and saying it was her main home. For seven years Baroness Whitaker rented the property, which is on a driveway leading to Lord Renton’s mansion in the Sussex Downs, at the same time as owning a million pound London property.

They really are all at it…

Saturday Seven Up

7upIf you were not one of the 55,808 visitors viewing 341,170 blog pages over the last seven days, here are the seven most popular stories (in order of popularity) that you missed:

You are either in front of Guido, or you are behind…

Loving the Personality Based Attacks

The Guidoisation of politics is finally being embraced by Labour:

Iain Dale was quick off the mark soliciting rejoinders:

Britain Only G7 Nation Still in Recession

Below is Guido’s easy to understand summary of the third quarter GDP growth figures globally:

Global Q3 GDP

As well as being the lamest economy in the G7, we share recessionary woes with economic powerhouses like Romania.  Gordon Brown’s epitaph will be that he didn’t abolish boom and bust, he didn’t save the world and he “led the way” only in his imagination.  The British economy has paid the price for his delusions.

Sources : Eurostat and OECD

Friday Caption Contest (Big Letters Edition)

gordon_writes

Cabinet Office Calls in Tory Wonk for ‘Broken Society’ Advice

The civil service is getting into planning for the post-Labour period. Who better to get in to give a preview of the likely thinking of the next government than one of Steve Hilton’s favourite wonks, the ‘Red Tory’ Philip Blond?  This email has just been sent out by the Cabinet Office Strategy Unit to senior civil servants:


Red Tory Cabinet Office

Title: ‘The decline of civil society and what it means for society’
Date: Wednesday, 25th November 2009
Time: 5:30- 6:30pm (refreshments available from 5pm)
Venue: Admiralty House, Whitehall
Chair: Gareth Davies, Director of the Strategy Unit
Respondent: David Rossington, Director of Strategy & Performance, DCLG

Dear Colleague

I am pleased to invite you to the above Strategy Unit – evening seminar at Admiralty House.

Phillip Blond’s talk on “The decline of civil society and what it means for society” will focus on the New Civic Settlement: outlining a new politics of civic association. The talk will outline how civic society has been eroded, and what we can do to rebuild it and how a reconstituted associative culture can help solve public policy problems which neither the state nor the market have the ability to solve.

We are also pleased to confirm that David Rossington, Director of Strategy & Performance, from the department of Communities and Local Government will join us to briefly to respond to Mr Blond’s presentation.

Philip Blond is known as the “Red Tory” and is centrist on economics and conservative on social matters. The civil service is obviously starting with the less scary centre-right wonks. Just wait until the bureaucrats hear from the other centre-right think tanks about what the ‘post-bureaucratic age means for them…

Voucher Snatcher

childcare_vouchers_picA lot of working parents find the tax relief afforded by childcare vouchers something that makes it worthwhile working. Gordon calculates that too many middle class people benefit – as if there was something wrong with that. The money saved […]

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Get Down to William Hill Fast

Just got £100 on Labour to win Glasgow East tonight @ 1/2. A 50% return overnight?  Seems way too generous.  Labour should be home easily…[…]

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Mirror Reflecting Sun

The Sun’s desertion of Labour and spirited onslaught on Gordon Brown, is clearly inspiring the Mirror to become ever more shrill in their attacks on Cameron.  Which promises to be quite good fun to watch.armistice-exploit

The attack today is a […]

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Guido Killed the Lobby Star

guido killed the lobby starThe PMOS, Simon Lewis, and the chairman of the Lobby, Jean Eaglesham, yesterday announced that the system of Downing Street Lobby briefings is to be reviewed  “in light of the changes in the reporting of the work of government in […]

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Quote of the Day

Labour candidate Clive Lewis tells the Staggers:

“I mean, in the multiverse there’s still three universes in a hundred where there’s a Green MP in Norwich, so anything could happen. I could be caught with my pants down behind a goat with Ed Miliband at the other end – well, hopefully that won’t happen.”

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