Monday, June 30, 2008

Balls Gets Clap

The Thomas Cubitt bar off Eaton Square, Belgravia, is a favourite of hedge fund managers and girls who want to marry them (or failing that, Prince Harry). Guido can particularly recommend the 1988 Chateau Rauzan-Ségla Margaux at £120 a bottle and the 1999 Louis Roederer Cristal at £190 for your mistress.

Exactly the kind of establishment you would expect to find Ed Balls frequenting – after all unlike the rest of us he does not have to worry about higher mortgage payments – we pay his for him. Last week he was in the Cubitt and the hedgies resentfully ignored him encroaching onto their territory. Until it was that it was time for him to leave; when he stood up the room gave him a slow hand-clap. Ed’s blink rate increased as he attempted to make a dignified exit.

He is rumoured to be a possible replacement for Alistair Darling at the Treasury. Clearly not something that will please the City’s moneymen….

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Exclusive : Indy Owner Profits from Mugabe Poster Advertising

The Indy on Sunday frontpages a tenuous story about MPs owning shares in companies like Barclays that do business in Zimbabwe. Hypocritically, the Indy’s parent company, Independent News & Media PLC, owns 100% of CCI, which according to the corporation’s own website “is the largest and fastest-growing outdoor advertising company in South Africa, with significant operations in Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.”

So the Indy’s owner actually made money from Mugabe’s poster advertising campaign for the election. Stick that on your front page…

UPDATE : A co-conspirator points out that Baroness Jay and Ken Clarke are non-execs on the board of INM plc. In Baroness Jay’s case it seems particularly difficult to reconcile her chairmanship of the Overseas Development Institute with personally profiting from the firm that profits from Mugabe’s election advertising campaigns.

Sunday Sleaze Round-Up

Guido has introduced a simple Pigs in Shit rating system for guidance on the misdemeanors of porcine politicians (guide here). Post links in the comments.

MPs Cashing in on Zimbabwe’s Misery

Totally disingenuous headline in the Indy on Sunday. The Tory MPs own shares in multi-national corporations that do business in Zimbabwe. Which means the majority of the country with a pension plan or a Barclays bank account is guilty on the terms set by the Indy. Nil pigs.

Spelman Faces Fresh RevelationsSky

CPS Study Abrahams ‘Dodgy’ Donations Dossier from PoliceSky

It ain’t over until it is over.

MEPs’ Champagne ‘Study Days’ Cost Taxpayer £200,000 – Sunday Times

Champagne swilling luxury junket taking the piss out of taxpayers as per normal.

How MPs Claim for a Second HomeSunday Telegraph

Simple explanation of the mechanics of the fiddle.

Wintertons to Cost Taxpayers Thousands More on New Flat - Mail on Sunday

Continuing tale of the troughing Tory twosome. Why don’t they live in their own now mortgage-free luxury flat? The taxpayer has bought it for them and fitted it out already. They are a troughing disgrace.

Labour Mired in Sleaze Claims as Scots Leader Quits and MPs are Accused of Homes Tax-DodgeMail on Sunday

Scottish Leader and Scottish MP go in disgrace.

‘Over 100 MPs’ in Multi-Million Tax Dodge Over Second HomesMail on Sunday
A specific capital gains dodge used by the likes of James Purnell and many others.

Scots Labour Leader ‘Confident of Being Cleared’ after ResigningMail on Sunday
No chance Wendy.

Marshall in Shock Resignation after Rumours Over ExpensesMail on Sunday
End of the gravy train for one MP.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Letter That Sealed Wendy’s Fate

click to enlarge
Back in November Guido had the exclusive scoop and was the first to publish this letter,* saying it would mean Wendy Alexander was toast. This personal note to Paul Green (dated October 5) showed that her telling the media that the first time she knew about his personal donation was 1 pm the previous day was simply untrue.

Paul Green also admitted that he gave two personal cheques of £950 which would have put him over the £1000 barrier and shown he was an impermissible offshoredonor.

Guido predicted that “there is no wriggle room. She is on the hook completely”. So it turned out, eventually.


*N.B. Incidentally, Guido was accused by Labour supporters of forging the letter.

GuyNews : Unhappy Anniversary Gordon

Guido could not let the first anniversary of the Brown regime pass without comment. This video captures the prevailing popular contempt for Gordon.

See “Gordon Frown” on GuyNews.TV.

Gordon Brown’s Unhappy Anniversary

Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday Caption Contest

Prize of John Laughland’s A History of Political Trials: From Charles I to Saddam Hussein to the wittiest comment – which is not going to be the most obvious comment.

Trouble at the Labourgraph

Today sees another round of sackings at the loss making Telegraph. Rumours abound that Heffer is off to the Daily Mail affronted by the spiritual decline of the paper – as well as an unsympathetic attitude to his hero Enoch Powell from the editor Will Lewis. The £10 million loss last year was they claim due to the move to the Victoria newsroom and the website’s multi-media revamp.
This year’s losses should be more limited – though the website is still not making money for anyone except ITN who supply content. Morale is low, even the Barclay Brother’s consigliere, Andrew Neil, was reported in the Indy on Sunday saying “The bloodletting at the Telegraph has gone on too long. After any takeover there is an element of blood on the carpet, but you have to go forward then and take your staff with you.” Admininstration staff on the foreign desk were fired Wednesday, 8 more staff hacks face the sack.

The paper’s editorial line is confusingly mixed, for a paper that was once considered the house paper of the Conservative Party it harbours a number of hacks who are determined enemies of Cameron. It is seeking to gain readers from the Daily Mail by emulating the Daily Mail. The only problem being the Mail does it so much better.

The other problem is the problem faced by all newspapers worldwide. Office based readers increasingly read their paper online and do not buy the inky dead tree version for the commute. They are also more promiscuous in their reading choices. The better the website, the less attractive the paper. Guido spoke last night at the journalist’s Frontline Club on a panel with digital hacks from the Press Gazette, Guardian and the Telegraph. As digerati they were a bit more clued up than most hacks – so they were very pessimistic. Guido of course cheerfully reminded them that he was the only one on the panel from a profitable publisher…

Downing Street Rat Dashes for Cash

As Guido pointed out yesterday, the captain is taking down the Labour ship with him and as this email from Fiona Gordon (his Downing Street political secretary) shows, the rats are doing the proverbial:
Dear Colleague,

Tomorrow will be my last day as Gordon Brown’s Political Secretary. It has been a privilege to work for Gordon and the wider team here at No 10 and I consider myself very fortunate to have had the opportunity. It has been a fascinating and hectic year.

I have also been lucky to work closely with you, not only in my current post but as the first women PLP Secretary. I will be taking away very many happy memories, particularly of the evening we gathered in the Chamber for the photograph to mark the Centenary of the PLP.

My next venture is to start my own communications business which I am very excited about.

My mobile number will remain the same xxxxxxx, my new email address is xxx@xxx.com Joe Irvin has been appointed to replace me. Joe has for the past year worked as a special adviser to the Prime Minister on trade union, employment and housing issues.

He is a lifelong Labour Party member and previously worked as special adviser to Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott 1996-2001, and was for many years a trade union official. I know you will give him all your support.

With my best wishes
Fiona

She is obviously going to try in cash in over the next year before her contacts become worthless…

Seen Elsewhere

Labour Failed Those Victims | Labour Uncut
We Cannot Ignore the Race Issue Here | Dan Hodges
74 MPs Who Back Stop Mills Motion | Speccie
Milibande | Ian Birrell
The True Meaning of Political Correctness Gone Mad | Speccie
Nigel, Nigel, Nigel! | Bloomberg
Bercow Blinks | Guardian
Speaker on the Ropes | Indy
Outgoing Clerk Slams Bercow – Row Goes Very Public | BBC
Darling Was Wrong on OBR | Speccie
Climate Change Cools Off | Washington Times


VOTER-RECALL
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Shaun Wright’s understatement about the Rotherham child abuse scandal…

“..I could have taken more action and probably dealt with this issue better.”



Owen Jones says:

We also need Zil lanes.


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