How to Get Ahead in Cowley Street

Since the departure of the Kennedy regime in January 2006, the LibDems have been very keen to abide by fair and scrupulous application processes in order to widen the net of talent that is employed at their Westminster HQ.
Ed Davy, the LibDem campaigns supremo and Ming’s chief of staff, must therefore know some very talented people. By remarkable coincidence, the three key spin appointments since Davy took on the role of campaigns chair have been:
  • Olly Grender as acting communications director – who is a close friend and former flatmate of Ed.
  • Johnathan Oates as permanent communications director – Ed’s former agent in Kingston and the best man at his wedding in 2006.
  • Hannah Parker Gardiner, has been appointed as Head of Media just recently – Ed’s ex-lover.
With Davy so connected to such a wealth of talent it is a wonder the party bothers with an application process at all. Why not just ask Ed who he has in his address book that might be suitable for any particular role? Wonder if Ed has leadership ambitions for the future? Placing his people in position now would be quite cunning…

Civil Liberties Group Condemns Race Speech

No not Big Brother, this is about Gordon Brown. Remember these headlines following Gordon’s speech to the GMB on Monday?

British workers for British jobs Daily Telegraph
Brown pledges ‘British workers for British jobs’ Daily Mail
Get British jobless doing British jobs Daily Mirror
Brown to put British workers first in jobs queue The Herald
Brown promises Britons first refusal on jobs The Independent

Colin Brown in the Independent explained: “Gordon Brown promised his union backers for the leadership of the Labour Party that as Prime Minister he will ensure British people get first refusal of jobs in Britain.” Oonagh Blackman in the Daily Mirror summarised his position as:“Gordon Brown yesterday pledged to give jobs to British workers ahead of migrants.”


So Gordon is promising discrimination in the job market against foreigners like Guido? Hmmm.

A civil liberties group, Liberty and Law, has reported the speech to the Commission for Racial Equality, saying “He must be aware that non-British citizens from the European union have an absolute right to live and work in this country without being subject to discrimination by employers. His speech appears to be xenophobic and gives reason for foreigners to fear for their … employment rights, apparently facing a government under his leadership that will attempt to discriminate against them.”

Imagine the outcry if a Tory backbencher had advocated “British jobs for British workers…”

Turncoat Short-Listed for Gillingham

Rehman Chishti defected to the Tories in the early days of Project Cameron much to the satisfaction of the Cameroonies. He even starred in a video with Dave where, in a plummy accent, he asserted his working-class roots.

With the high level of support that he has from the likes of Francis Maude whom he advises on “diversity and ethnic minorities” it is no surprise that he got on the A-list fast track. Donal Blaney has gone in guns blazing…

BBC 5 Live : Removals Van Spotted Outside No. 10

UPDATE : Real picture here.

They Don’t Like It Up ‘Em

Iain Dale had a go at the Sunday Lobby yesterday for recycling a Brownite speech and spin package. The gentlemen of the Lobby were not slow to respond. Patrick Hennessy from the Sunday Telegraph and Ian Kirby from the News of the World have jumped into his comments to protest.

Having read the stories in the Sunday papers, it does seem that there was a speech in Glasgow on Saturday where Gordon tried to have it both ways – more bugging and surveillance with more accountability. Clearly a briefing of the Sunday Lobby by somone on Gordon’s spin team followed.

Hennessy and Kirby imply there was no condition of the briefing that they should keep it from being put to David Davis, Nick Clegg or even John Reid. Nevertheless Iain is right, it does seem odd not to ask “what do you say to this?” when according to the Sunday Times “a source close to Brown” is spinning that he plans “to build a nonpartisan consensus on the best balance between obtaining convictions of people plotting terrorist acts and preserving our sources of intelligence for the future.” One would have thought a good journalist would have asked Clegg or Davis did they see much chance of a nonpartisan consensus on 90-days-without-trial? Just a thought…

The Big Red Book of New Labour Sleaze

Have just finished Guido’s last contribution to the new expanded follow-up edition to our last bestseller, The Big Red Book of New Labour Sleaze produced by writers from across the blogosphere. It should be in bookshops in three weeks, conveniently just in time for Brown’s coronation. It will of course include more Brownite misdemeanours that we may have over-looked in the past.
So Guido’s focus is back on the blog and political tittle-tattle just in time for the fun to begin with the next round of Loans-for-Lordships interviews. Guido has not missed the fact that Blair’s people have been re-bailed, with the police looking set to strengthen their case before charges are brought.

Have no fear, charges will, one way or another, be brought.

Pap-Snap of Hain HQ

Dizzy has this photo of the throbbing hive of activity that is Hain campaign HQ.

Are they boxes of fake tan piled up?

Hain is still available at 40/1 on Betfair

Prescott Rumours

Unconfirmed rumours going round that it is more serious than just a mere “chest infection“.

Letter to Miliband

The names have been deleted to protect the cheeky:

Rt Hon David Miliband MP
Secretary of State,
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA),
Nobel House
17 Smith Square
London SW1P 3JR

16 May 2007

Dear Secretary of State,

My friend, who is in farming at the moment, recently received a cheque for £3,000 from the Rural Payments Agency for not rearing pigs. I would now like to join the “not rearing pigs” business.

In your opinion, what is the best kind of farm not to rear pigs on, and which is the best breed of pigs not to rear? I want to be sure I approach this endeavour in keeping with all government policies, as dictated by the EU under the Common Agricultural Policy.

I would prefer not to rear bacon pigs, but if this is not the type you want not rearing, I will just as gladly not rear porkers. Are there any advantages in not rearing rare breeds such as Saddlebacks or Gloucester Old Spots, or are there too many people already not rearing these?

As I see it, the hardest part of this programme will be keeping an accurate record of how many pigs I haven’t reared. Are there any Government or Local Authority courses on this?

My friend is very satisfied with this business. He has been rearing pigs for forty years or so, and the best he ever made on them was £1,422 in 1968. That is – until this year, when he received a cheque for not rearing any.

If I get £3,000 for not rearing 50 pigs, will I get £6,000 for not rearing 100?

I plan to operate on a small scale at first, holding myself down to about 4,000 pigs not raised, which will mean about £240,000 for the first year. As I become more expert in not rearing pigs, I plan to be more ambitious, perhaps increasing to, say, 40,000 pigs not reared in my second year, for which I should expect about £2.4 million from your department. Incidentally, I wonder if I would be eligible to receive tradable carbon credits for all these pigs not producing harmful and polluting methane gases?

Another point: These pigs that I plan not to rear will not eat 2,000 tonnes of cereals. I understand that you also pay farmers for not growing crops. Will I qualify for payments for not growing cereals to not feed the pigs I don’t rear?

I am also considering the “not milking cows” business, so please send any information you have on that too. Please could you also include the current Defra advice on set aside fields? Can this be done on an e-commerce basis with virtual fields (of which I seem to have several thousand hectares)?

In view of the above you will realise that I will be totally unemployed, and will therefore qualify for unemployment benefits.

I shall of course be voting for your party at the next general election.

Yours faithfully,

XXXXX XXXXXXXXXX

Is the Cruddas Campaign a Covert Operation?

A co-conspirator spent a morning last week trying to get hold of the Cruddas campaign – don’t ask – the campaign website gives no phone numbers. His constituency office said they were not allowed to give out that information and it being recess the office in parliament was unmanned, with the voicemail saying it was full.

Both Cruddas’s and Benn’s campaigns are based in the same serviced offices near Lambeth Bridge. At the time of writing Team Cruddas hasn’t managed to empty the pigeonhole since it has had it (about two and a half weeks). Strikes Guido this is exactly the sort of Deputy Leader of the Labour Party the country needs: one who makes scarey left-wing noises for public consumption but has the organisational acumen of a vegetable marrow. Cheaper to run than Prescott, too.

His price on Betfair makes him third favourite after what most judge was a better and certainly more authentic performance on Newsnight. Despite a little excitement that this has brought to in the beating hearts of the Labour Left, Guido suggests you bet against him rather than on him. He is not going to win…

On Betfair Alan Johnson has overtaken Benn as favourite following a weekend poll putting him ahead with Labour members.

Another £10,000 Taxpayer Subsidy Bung to the Smith Institute

When the Food Standards Agency wanted to find out about the Effects of Nutrition in School Attainment who should they have asked?

Well apart from Jamie Oliver and everyone’s mother, they could have gone to one of the various centres of excellence in the academic world; The Human Nutrition Research Centre at Newcastle University, the Nutrition Research Review team from the department of biochemistry at UCL, the Centre for Public Health Nutrition Research at the University of Dundee would have been particularly appropriate. Maybe the Medical Research Council’s Collaborative Centre for Human Nutrition Research at Cambridge University. These are well known and authoritative centres.

What did the highly politicised Food Standards Agency quango do instead in the aftermath of the Turkey Twizzler scandal? They called those well known experts in child nutrition, Konrad Caulkett and Wilf Stevenson at the Smith Institute. The Sith got Jon Snow in to chair the event, with Dame Deidre Hutton from the Food Standards Agency presiding.

Other seminar contributors included New Labour’s favourite headmaster Gary Philips (Lillian Baylis Technology School), Dame Suzi Leather – who was at the time at the Schools Food Trust. Paul Kelly from the contract caterers Compass Group chipped in – Compass are the firm which shoves chips down the throats of kids.

Funnily enough one of the conclusions they came to was that Mum’s packed lunch was not nutritious and the kids would be better off scoffing Compass Group’s nosh. For this conclusion to the gathering the Smith Institute was paid £10,000 of the taxpayer’s money. The actual benefit to child nutrition was zero. Subsidy value to Gordon’s charitable think tank – £10,000. Isn’t it amazing that once again it costs the taxpayer £10,000 for the Smith Institute to organise one seminar for a government quango, yet costs the Sith nothing to hold nearly 200 hundred seminars on government property at No. 11? The discovery of this latest bung follows last week’s revelation of a last-minute cover-up of another £11,750 bung to the Smith Institute direct from the Treasury. The whole thing stinks.
Even more disturbing is that Dame Suzi Leather, who attended this seminar, is a long-time Labour Party activist who now heads up the Charity Commission, which is conducting the investigation into the Smith Institute for breaches of the Charities Act. No conclusion has been reached in that investigation yet, which is in itself very worrying…

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

Evening Standard : Cameron’s Grammar School U-Turn

Boris : Cocaine Does Nothing For Me

Iain Dale manages to report on Boris Johnson’s interview in GQ with Piers Morgan without mentioning his claim that when he tried cocaine “it achieved no pharmacological, psychotropic or any other effect on me whatsoever.” Hmmm. Cocaine makes you over-confident, prone to babbling nonsense and as randy as hell. Are you sure it had no effect Boris?


He admits to smoking dope in his school days. Was everybody at Eton stoned in the 80s?

Stat-Porn for May

A below average 347,499 pageloads from 264,598 unique visitors. Iain Dale managed to overtake Guido’s traffic with a record (for him) 388,935 from 231,901 visitors this month. He will be chuffed.

After Guido-related search terms the most popular search phrases were in order:

gordon brown rocking horse
“gordon brown gay”
“katy taylor-richards”
“the hitch blog”
“sir michael white”

What is it that some 600 people want to know about Katy?

The biggest easily identifiable readership groups (in order) come from:

Oxford University
Houses of Parliament
Cambridge University
BBC
CCHQ
News International
Associated Newspapers
Good Relations
University of Bristol

Loafing layabouts the lot of you…

Tory Grammar School Policy Explained Pictorially

Myners Infraction or Cover-Up?

Back in February this year Guido was pressing for explanations as to the Smith Institute’s use of No. 11 Downing Street. The fact that the charity seemed to have only one beneficiary – Gordon Brown – meant that it was not only breaking the rules against political activity by a charity, it was actually functioning as a factional powerbase for Brownites.[…]

+ READ MORE +



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