Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

St Tony Comes into the Light

Guido is trying to take a break from blogging and ignore the newsflow. Hard when the two main news items in Ireland today are Taoiseach Bertie Ahern being cross examined over corruption allegations and Tony formally converting to Catholicism. Blair always was upwardly mobile.

UPDATE : Fraser Nelson had a good piece anticipating Blair’s formal conversion last month. Guido’s struggle for the re-Catholicisation of England seems to be progressing well with the news that Catholic church-goers out number C of E church-goers.

Hain’s Suspiciously Slow Declaration

On the morning of December 3 earlier this month Guido called up one of Hain’s (until that day) undeclared financial backers to make enquiries. By that afternoon Hain had made a dash across to the Electoral Commission, allegedly entirely unrelated, to clear up a few omissions.

Sky’s Joey Jones wonders why Hain’s team is taking so long to get the information out into the open. Joey asks
So why the delay? – Is there a bigger can of worms than we had thought?

Hain’s team say they want to get their submission absolutely right. I know it may sound a bit cynical for this time of year, but I wouldn’t be entirely surprised if the information got sneaked out once everyone’s headed off for the holidays…

Guido has his own suspicions. Don’t worry Peter, Guido will break away from his holidays to make sure it doesn’t go unreported. Don’t forget anything this time Peter, it would not look good if Guido had to point out an omission again…

Clegg Hires Brian Eno as “Youth Issues Adviser”

Brian Eno is a 60 year old ex-rock musician.

UPDATE : Clegg doesn’t believe in God. No word from God as yet on the future prospects for the LibDems, but you don’t expect miracles.

Boris Bus Beats Ken’s Killer Bendy Bus

Boris is backing the futuristic clean, low emission, hydrogen-powered wheelchair and pushchair friendly double decker bus. So us cyclists will have two good reasons to support it, less chance of being crushed to death by a bendy bus or having to choke on diesel fumes. Autocar commissioned this design. Of course we were told by Ken that “only a dehumanised moron” would get rid of the Routemaster. Ken got rid of the Routemaster in 2004.

Londoners want, and tourists especially expect, to see the famous red bus silhouette against the backdrop of the Capital of the World. Bizarrely Ken’s supporters now no longer able to object on disability legislation grounds now object on cost grounds. When have they ever worried about cost before? Boris is on to a populist vote winner here…

Failure to Follow-Up

Guido has been busy Christmas shopping, spending his Clegg bets winnings, which were not as much as they should be because Guido reduced his exposure as the campaign progressed, or rather as Clegg’s campaign failed to progress.

Meantime in the red corner of Guido’s blog comments a number of posters are complaining that Guido has failed to follow up the scandal of Cameron’s Dodgy Donors. Yet more evidence that Guido is, yawn, a Tory toady.

There is a back story here. When the Abrahams scandal blew up Guido got an anonymous call from a posh voice who seemed to be intimately familiar with Tory fundraising processes. It was inconceivable, the source claimed, that if Labour were following procedures they would be unaware of Abrahams. The Tories themselves checked donations against monthly updated electoral rolls. They returned donations regularly which checks discovered failed to meet the criteria, all donations above £200 were checked, above £5,000 they were scrutinised and at £50,000 they got to know everything about them. Labour were simply not doing this checking and Guido should get on to the Electoral Commission to discover how many donations Labour returned in comparison to the Conservatives. Not enough it now seems.

The Tories are being disingenuous saying they voluntarily forfeited the £5,900 and £1,500 donations. They had no choice, the 30 day grace period to discover mistakes was up. Unless by “voluntarily” they mean “we didn’t want to continue breaking the law” they only did what they had to do.

It is extra embarrassing that it is Cameron’s own constituency association. Is it on a par with Peter Watt, the Labour Party’s national general secretary, being party to a proxy donor scheme to cover-up the party’s third biggest donor? Well, you judge for yourselves…

Courageous Gordon to Use Alistair as Human Shield

The PM’s monthly news conference will be a laugh* in ten minutes. Notice it is called the PM’s monthly news conference, yet this month he is bringing Alistair Darling along to take the blame for the inevitable questions about Northern Crock. He couldn’t do his usual Macavity trick and disappear so he is going to try to hide behind his Darling Chancellor instead.

*Maybe not.

+++ MING IS ALIVE +++

Seen at the LibDem leadership announcement. Not looking too spritely or cheerful…

UPDATE : Clegg won (no surprise) and gave a speech worthy of, errm, Al Gore. There were only 500 votes in it out of some 40,000 cast.

CCHQ Designated Party Poopers Tonight

CCHQ are having their Christmas party tonight. Somebody is worried that the boys and girls will get out of hand. Surely not, this isn’t the Bullingdon Club after all…

Dear All,

HR have just had a word with me regarding the CCHQ duty of care and tonight’s party.

In essence this means each Department nominating someone to ‘be sensible’ and ensure that each of their people aren’t found (a) drunk (b) abusing other members of staff and (c) that each person in their team gets off the premises safely.

Therefore please can I leave it to you all to nominate someone sensible within your teams to make sure that tonight goes smoothly?

Many thanks

Jennie Gorbutt │ Party Chairman’s Office │CCHQ

The Human Resources party-pooper is Giles Inglis-Jones, who once tried to impose a gagging contract on all CCHQ staff. He is not popular at CCHQ nor, as you can see above, was the gagging contract successful.

Do feel free to email pictures of “sensible” drunken fun to Guido, photocopied bum prints are a must…


UPDATE : The Tory Christmas card is here. The more ideological one from those Eurosceptic jokers is here.

Who is Leaking Now?

At the last stormy meeting of Tony Wright’s Public Administration Select Committee, Yates of the Yard was blamed for leaking during the inquiry into Loans for Lordships. He pointed the finger at the politicians on the committee. They in turn accused the police.

So who told the Sunday papers about Levy trying to block publication (later today) of Gulam Noon’s letter to the committee? Yates hasn’t even seen the letter.

Here are a selection of the stories from the Sunday papers:

Who do you now believe was really responsible for the leaks and speculation, the police or the politicians?

Can the Irish Again Save Europe?

With the fall of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, it fell to us Irish, to our glory, to save Western Civilisation. It was Irish monks who copied and preserved almost all of Western classical poetry, history, oratory, philosophy and commentary. It was in the Ireland of St. Patrick and the Book of Kells that, safely distant in the West and away from the barbarian despoliation of the European continent, monks and scribes laboriously, lovingly even, preserved the West’s written treasury.

As Thomas Cahill records in How the Irish Saved Civilization: The Untold Story of Ireland’s Heroic Role from the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Medieval Europe “when stability returned in Europe, these Irish scholars were instrumental in spreading learning, becoming not only the conservators of civilization, but also the shapers of the medieval mind, putting their unique stamp on Western culture.” Ireland became “Europe’s publisher” as warrior-monks followed Columcille’s example and began to colonise barbarised Europe.

Whereas once before in distant European history the Irish preserved documents to save Europe from barbarians, Ireland could now vote down a document and save Europe from the bureaucrats. Ireland, alone of all the nations of Europe, will hold a referendum on the Constitutional Treaty…

Andrew Gilligan in this evening’s London Standard has another story about the whirlpool of corruption and graft surrounding Lee Jasper, Mayor Ken Livingstone’s aide.

Cash has been dished out in wheelbarrows to Jasper’s pals. Now a whistle-blower of impeccable credentials has come out to describe a catalogue of demands for hush money, political interference and financial irregularity.

The Tories are now calling for the District Auditor to come in and go over the books. In any organisation where one individual faced so many allegations he would be suspended pending an investigation. What does Ken do? He calls everyone racist and gets his echo-chamber of ratepayer funded self-serving community groups to join in the chant. It won’t work this time.

Brenda Stern, who was the programme manager for the LDA’s Diversity Works initiative, is a former director for the Commission for Racial Equality, who was brought into the LDA in March 2006 to rescue Diversity Works. She comes from a background in anti-apartheid activism. Her credibility is not in question. Lee Jasper should be very worried.

So why is Ken still so vehemently defending his aide? Could it be that Lee Jasper knows where the bodies are buried?

We Told You So…


John Hutton didn’t mince his words when he gave Nick Robinson his prediction. He was right.


He made this forecast (video here) to a Question Time audience. He got it wrong, it took five months.


They are going to miss three times election winning Blair when he is gone. Wait and see…
26 June 2007

Labour have acted like lemmings, dispensing with their most successful leader of all time for a less popular, less likeable replacement. The more the voters see of Gordon, the worse it will get.
May 13, 2007

You have to wonder if the Labour party is having a collective moment of Lemming-like lunacy... The Brown bounce will be a dead-Lemming bounce.
April 27, 2007

Remind Guido why they are getting rid of three-times-winner Blair early?
April 25, 2007

The Tories are on polling levels last seen at the height of Thatcher’s popularity during the national euphoria following the Falklands victory. Gordon Brown has been a f***ing disaster for the Labour party…

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

The Fat Lady is About to Sing

All those who pledged to support a private prosecuton of Lord Levy should now have received an update by email and text message.

As was always intended, we will make a final decision as to whether to seek a prosecution following the conclusion of the all-party Public Administration Select Committee’s deliberations. They will be publishing their report into “Honours and Propriety” on Wednesday.

Well over two hundred people have pledged financial support for a prosecution. As we have seen with this second Donorgate wave of Labour fundraising sleaze, there will be no end to corrupt political fundraising until those concerned realise that they risk jail. This can’t be allowed to go on unpunished. Harman, Hain and others claim ignorance of the law and forgetful mistakes. The opportunity to unforgettably impress on politicians the disgust of voters with the system is approaching…

Twinkle Toes Vince Cable

+ READ MORE +



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