Ali Campbell Complains About the Blogosphere

“The blogosphere is very right wing at the moment. We need more voices out there to counter it” he told 200 mugs who had paid hard cash (£15) to hear Campbell plug his book – “perfect for Dad for Christmas” at a fringe event last night.

Chris Hope in the Telegraph agrees: it is the right-wing blogs that are shaping coverage in the dead-tree-press.
We know the ususal Tory suspects he is talking about – Guido Fawkes, Iain Dale and Tim Montgomerie’s. There are left-wing blogs like LabourHome but they seem to lack the spikiness and must-read edge of Guido, for example.

After a lot of thought about this, Guido has come to a simple conclusion as to why British left-wing blogs are unsuccessful. It is not because Labour is in government. It is because they are boring.

Nothing To See Here…

Bournemouth police just happen to trot along in line abreast over IWannaReferendum slogan outside Labour’s conference…

Time for Tactical Decisions from CCHQ and Cowley Street

The LibDems are getting pummelled in the polls – this morning a YouGov poll has them down another 3% to 13% with the Tories unchanged on 33%. Guido finds it hard to believe the accuracy of this poll – with Labour at 44% that makes them more popular than in 1997 when they scored 43%. Not very likely is it?
A hung parliament is still the most likely outcome of the next election whatever the polls currently say. The only way to ensure that outcome is to take seats off Labour, swapping Tory and LibDem seats will not change the government.

Is it time for them to consider tactical voting? Mike Smithson over at PoliticalBetting.com has made the case for this before, if you want to get rid of this government, vote for the party best placed to beat New Labour in your constituency. In Scotland that seems to have happened already, the business community has switched from the no-hope Tories to the SNP. In return the SNP has begun to talk more about “Enterprise Scotland” and is now polling even stronger than during the recent local elections.

The problem is that LibDem and Tory activists hate each other. They would not countenance any explicit instruction to vote for the other party. Often at each others neck in local government, the idea of a non-aggression pact is unpalatable. Rather than going into any protracted negotiations the Tories should just direct resources away from LibDem incumbents and into the battle in Labour seats. The LibDems political antennae would detect the shift, they would consequently be able to shift their more limited resources away from defending LibDem seats against Tory insurgents and towards attacking Labour incumbents.

Encouraging Tories and LibDems to work together is not easy, but there is one issue that is heartfelt by LibDems and Tories in their libertarian hearts – ID cards. Pushing ID cards up the political agenda would place Tories and LibDems on the same side of the barricades against an authoritarian government. Psychologically a useful pre-cursor to a post-election deal. If Tory and LibDem activists worked together on the NO 2 ID campaign they might even find their rivals more likeable. As Brown begins to sound more and more authoritarian, emphasising “Strength”, “Britain” and “British jobs for British workers” the Liberal Democrats may realise they have a lot more in common with Cameron’s liberal Conservatives than with Brown’s ideology of state power. Ming may lean towards Brown, but the next LibDem leader is less likely to do so…

Picture Imperfect

To pick up a media pass for the Conservative conference in Blackpool they specify that you have to bring photo-ID. Your face is not good enough?

Basher Shoots Another Staff Member

Guido hasn’t found the body, but there is circumstantial evidence that yet another David Davis staff member has bitten the dust. Does anyone have an explanation for this puzzling phenomenon?

Don’t Miss Dispatches Tonight on C4 at 8pm

Have just finished reading Peter Oborne’s new book The Triumph of the Political Class. It is a brilliant anatomisation of the reality of the contemporary situation. Guido is therefore looking forward to tonight’s exposé of the venality of our politicians. Ed Balls and Yvette Cooper’s legal fiddling of £27,000 of allowances will be covered…

Ten More Years of the Same?

David Miliband said on the weekend that he wants another ten years of New Labour rule. Looking through today’s speech from Gordon about his aspirations for Britain, it struck Guido that it is all more of the same. After ten years all the goals of 1997 are still the goals of 2007.

Child poverty, social mobility, youth unemployment, basic literacy and crime are still unsolved problems. In some of these areas things have gone back, not forward – youth unemployment is worse, violent gun crime is higher. How can Gordon be the change?

Lost Count

Guido lost count of the number of times Gordon said “Britain” or “British”. Don’t think he mentioned Scotland once…

UPDATE : The Fink makes a snappy point, Gordon “pledged that unless contract cleaners in hospitals meet the highest standards of cleanliness they will lose their contract. What’s the procedure at the moment, then?”

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

From A-List to Shoplift

Adam Rickitt is the soap star A-lister who, despite dancing semi-naked in pop videos, never managed to find a seat. So he went down under to New Zealand to act in a local show.

The New Zealand Herald on Sunday reports today that he has been arrested for shoplifting.

Meanwhile over at the News of the Screws Andrew Pelling’s soon to be ex-wife has put the boot in to the soon to be ex-MP, accusing him of being a Prozac-crazed, Chav-hating, Cameron-despising loon. So he is not completely crazy…

Hat-tip : kiwiblog.co.nz

Friday Caption Contest (Andrew Pelling Edition)

Sky News to Up Online Coverage

Adam Boulton has found out that this blogging lark is harder than he thought and has brought in reinforcements, his blog is now re-branded Boulton & Co with more of the newsroom collaborating.
Sky News is re-launching next month as well, with a 7.30pm slot with a net focus. They are looking to get some of the UK’s most influential bloggers to comment on the news stories that are moving up across the web. Alas they can’t lure Guido out of his cellar, so if you fancy becoming a talking head, email their multi-media producer Ruth Barnett. Or else it will be Iain…

Nadine Dorries Fails Conference Security Check

Nadine Dorries MP is having problems getting a pass for the Tory conference, her researcher has already been refused a pass on the grounds that his pass was taken in front of a tree.

Is CCHQ trying to tell the garrulous Cornerstone supporter something?

Research May Clear Pelling

Too Late…

King Holds His Own

Mervyn is coming over as calm, collected and straight forward. He said something interesting about the Treasury guarantee, or rather the form of words used about it was interesting, “my understanding…as far as I know”, signalling that he was not the author of, or privy to the details.[…]

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Quote of the Day

Heather Wheeler talks to Burton Mail about her tweet…

“It was a tongue in cheek pop after the European Parliament tweet – it was purely that. I also wanted to congratulate Team GB on a brilliant result and thirdly congratulate the Commonwealth countries who also did very well. Fourth, I am also looking forwarded to establishing new trade agreements. That was it – nothing more. Let’s just enjoy the summer!”

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