Bad News, Good News

With a load of economic data out this morning the pound is off 1% against the euro, the Purchasing Managers Index is down sharply, mortgage lending is down 70% year on year, credit card borrowing is up, PWC have research out saying Briton’s are now personally £1.5 trillion in debt – yet Gordon wants them to spend, spend, spend more.

It is not all bad news though, Guido is short the FTSE….

+++ London Scottish Bank Bust +++

Official Stock Exchange announcement that after 100 years of trading it is in administration here. Metaphorical allegory in there somewhere.

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

Did Marr Do the Usual Hard-Hitting Interview?

Guido stayed in bed this morning and missed the Andrew Marr show, which doesn’t appear to be up on iPlayer yet (forgot to set the digicorder as well).

Judging by the comments below he let Jacqui Smith off the hook (surprise) over Damian Green. According to PoliticsHome’s transcript when “asked about claims Mr Green had been bugged she said she would have had to sign a warrant for that to happen and she had not”. More when it is up on iPlayer.

UPDATE 11.50 : According to comments below the PoliticsHome transcript is incorrect. Pretty crucial detail to get wrong if they have.

UPDATE 12.20 : Have now watched the interview. She gave the impression, but did not state that she had not authorised bugging. Marr actually seemed better than average.

Electoral Commission Is Investigating Gordon Brown / Smith Institute Slush Fund Allegations

The Sunday Times is reporting that the Electoral Commission is to investigate whether, in breach of electoral law, Ed Balls continued working for Gordon Brown while on the payroll of the Smith Institute charity before becoming an MP.

Regular readers will know that this allgation was a central part of Guido’s campaign against the Sith. Essentially the Smith Institute was a slush fund for Gordon’s ambitions. The Tories are now convinced that Ed Balls continued working for Gordon Brown when he was on the charity’s payroll. They have been trying for six months to ascertain whether or not he continued to have access to the Treasury with a security pass. Guido has other evidence that Ed Balls continued to act as Gordon Brown’s political adviser during th 2004 / 5 period when he was being paid by the charity. Not only Balls but also Tony Pilch, a former SpAd close to Balls, and Bob Shrum during the same over-lapping period were working for the Smith Institute.

According to the Sunday Times “the Tories are submitting a complaint to the Electoral Commission and John Lyon, the parliamentary commissioner for standards. They want Brown to be challenged over whether Balls had a pass.”

Guido understands that the Electoral Commission is already making inquiries, including in the United States, following a complaint made last July (after the Charity Commission report condemned the Smith Institute for partisan activity) by the Sunlight Centre for Open Politics. That letter of complaint (here) focused on the activities of U.S. pollster Bob Shrum. Shrum was paid by the Smith Institute to advise Gordon Brown, these slush payments are a serious breach of electoral law.

From Superhero to Moses

After reading Peter Mandelson’s unintentionally hilarious interview in the Guardian comparing Brown to Moses, Alan Duncan, his shadow says;
“First global superhero and now Moses… Labour and Peter Mandelson should spend more time getting a grip on the country’s problems and less time heaping praise on their failed leader. We face massive issues. The automotive sector is grinding to a halt, the payment chain between companies is freezing over and insolvencies are rising fast. Labour has all but bankrupted Britain and as a result we are now badly placed to stave off the recession.”

Britain does need a miracle worker…

UPDATE : Charlotte Corday, the co-conspirator with the most cutting wit in the comments: “The only thing that Gordon Brown has in common with Moses is that they are both basket-cases.”

Good Faith Claim is Bad Politics

The LibDems love sitting on the moral high ground safe in the knowledge that since they will never form a government, they won’t have to implement their policy positions. In a world of shades of grey, they see things in black and white. They even have a campaigning website www.Corruption is a Crime.com with the slogan “It’s time to end dodgy dealing”. The website proclaims “For far too long, it’s been acceptable to turn a blind eye to corruption when it comes to foreign contracts. The Liberal Democrats believe that corruption is a crime and should be stopped. Allegations of serious corruption must be fully investigated.”

Excellent news. Perhaps now Michael Brown, their Majorca-based backer, has been convicted of theft, they will repay the defrauded £2.4 million they got from their crooked patron? When LibDemVoice polled readers, 52% of the highly moralistic grassroots sandalistas thought the party should pay back the money ASAP. Strangely nowhere on www.corruptionisacrime.com is Michael Brown mentioned…

ePolitix Not Closing, "Re-Focusing"

Michael Hepburn, CEO of Dods tells Guido that ePolitix.com is not closing (despite rumours to the contrary), it will instead focus more specifically on specialist in-depth analysis of policy and legislation rather than general political news stories. They will be cutting back on “3 or 4 journalists” as a result…

Whistleblowers Still Welcome Here

Guido makes every technological effort to make it easy and safe to blow the whistle on politicians:

  • If you call the voicemail number your speech is converted to text and SMS’d to Guido’s mobile phone.* Your voice is then erased.

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Friday Caption Competition (Dry, Wet, Soppy Edition)

[…]

+ READ MORE +

+++ Taxpayer Loses £2 Billion in RBS First Day of Ownership +++

Taxpayer paid 65.5p, currently trading 55p. Loss of £2 billion on the first day the taxpayer became the majority shareholder. It is only money…

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Then and Now

In May 1985, a youthful opposition politician got hold of a leaked confidential government review proposing to encourage the unemployed to get jobs by reducing their dole. This, he raged, was ” a raid on the poor”.

Gordon was

[…]

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Adam Boulton says David Cameron campaigned as a neo-Thatcherite…

“The manifesto programme, with its sell-off of social housing, clampdown on public sector strikes, EU in/out referendum and benefit cuts, represents a much more traditional, neo-Thatcherite conservatism than that offered by Cameron Mk 1…”

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