Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Unfunded Tax Cuts – Hooray!

At last a policy from the government that Guido can support. Let us hear no more from Labour politicians about Tory “unfunded tax cuts”. The government is going to have to go to the City to borrow the extra £2.7 billion…

Prize Competition :Explain the Labour Party’s Position on a Scottish Referendum

Could someone please explain, in 50 words or less, the Labour Party position on a referendum?
Following the Labour Group in the Scottish Parliament’s meeting on Tuesday (6 May) their Convener, Duncan McNeil, said: “No one in the room had any complaints about the decision that has been taken and we are now in a position where, as a group, we will not vote down any Referendum Bill that comes into the Parliament. That’s the change in the Labour group’s position today.” Wendy Alexander told us “I was delighted that at the Labour group today not a single colleague advocated the position that we should walk into the lobbies and vote down Scotland’s right to choose.”

Previously Labour’s position was that it would oppose an attempt by Alex Salmond’s SNP to hold a referendum in 2010 on freeing Scotland from Westminster rule. Now their position is that it will all come down to “timescale” and “wording”. Some of them are even saying they will vote against a referendum bill. The Labour Group came out of a meeting today looking sullen and refused to answer direct questions. They have u-turned again. Guido will give a copy of the best book on how to win a referendum – White Elephant – How the North East Said No – to anyone who can explain, definitively the Labour Party’s position on a Scottish referendum in less than 50 words. Answers in the comments please.

‘Ello ‘Ello ‘Ello

A co-conspirator emails:

Seen today in Portcullis House: Assistant Commissioner John Yates. Wonder what he’s doing here…?

This Leak Enquiry Should Be Easy

Careful examination of the photographic evidence reveals that it is the manicured finger of Ms Flint that is holding this morning’s Cabinet briefing* for public viewing. She should be charged under Section 8 of the Official Secrets Act 1989 for failing “to take such care to prevent its unauthorised disclosure as a person in his/[her] position may reasonably be expected to take.”

The final sentence visible concludes, in bold type, that most importantly: “… it is vital that we show that at this time of uncertainty we show that we are on people’s side”. You see that is the thing with New Labour politicians, what they care most about is covering their arse. Not that they would think to introduce an emergency growth package as Bush has done in the U.S., or cut taxes to boost growth like they have elsewhere in Europe. No, the most important thing is that they push their disingenuous spin slogan that they are “on people’s side”. That should do it…

*They don’t have a clue – 5%, 10% or more falls in property prices possible. Government has of course guaranteed the mortgage market with taxpayers money.

So the Answer is "No"

The official report of yesterday morning’s Lobby briefing is the usual waste of time and evasive non-answers from the PMS. However this bit of obsfucation amused Guido:
Asked if the Prime Minister was happy, the PMS said that the Prime Minister, as he had said himself before, believed that he had the best job in the world and he was focusing on meeting the priorities of the British people; that’s what we were doing today and what we would be doing for the days and weeks ahead.

“No” in other words…

Brown Loses Compass, Neal Lawson Calls for Him to Go

Neal Lawson runs Compass which is the liveliest of Labour’s soft-left factional campaigning organisations. He is a prickly character, some will attribute his knifing of Gordon today (Indy) to a mixture of disappointment and perhaps irritation that post-Blair he has neither been listened to, nor given any preferment by Gordon. He might not have taken up a position in Gordon’s big tent, but it would have been nice to have been asked…

Compass was a strategic part of the “coalition of the willing” to unseat Blair, so Lawson should accept some of the responsibility for saddling Labour with Brown. The month after Brown took office Lawson wrote a piece for the Guardian gushing like a school girl:

The skilfully engineered bounce witnessed in the first days of Gordon Brown’s premiership could be turned into something more: a political earthquake. The time is ripe not just for a better Labour government but for a shift in the centre of gravity of politics decisively to the left. Brown could be the first Labour leader since Clement Attlee to recast British society – not by taking small steps but giant leaps. This is why. Once in every generation a political revolution takes place in which thinking and behaviour shifts not just by degrees but qualitatively. It happened in 1945 under Labour, as the experience of the war and the economic depression before it heralded the centralised welfare state.

He concluded his paean with a quote from the left-wing theorist Gramsci: “The challenge of modernity is to live without illusions, without becoming disillusioned.” Well today he has himself failed Gramsci’s challenge, his disillusionment is total. He complains that since Gordon funked calling an election in October he has been an “unmitigated disaster”. Gordon’s “responses have been both wrong and weak” or merely “dog whistle policies”. How hard it must be for Lawson and his Compass followers, who connived with the Brownies so long to make life difficult for Blair, to see left-wing hopes crushed as Labour now campaigns on an authoritarian agenda, promising British jobs for British workers, attacking the Tories for being soft on foreigners and ID cards so soon after publicly taking tea with Mrs Thatcher. Gordon is now reviled both by the vindicated Blairites and the disillusioned left. The worry for the Tories must be that the factions might just unite to dispatch Brown early…

Monday, May 12, 2008

Crewe & Nantwich Betting

After seeing some of the LibDem campaign literature and the undeniable fact that the Labour odds have lengthened even further, Guido has covered his bet taking the hit and cutting his losses on that Labour bet.
The LibDems are not repeating the mistake they made in the Mayorals. They attacked Boris when the public was moving towards the Tories. This election they are going with the popular flow and attacking Labour. Their advertising says “Send a Message to Gordon Brown”. They might take some votes from disillusioned Labour voters who can’t bring themselves to vote Tory. More bad news for Tamsin…

Levy Sweats it Out

Just got back from popping in on Sleazy Levy’s book launch for A Question of Honour. Guido doesn’t usually do the London political scene cocktail circuit, however for Levy, well, Guido thought he would make an exception. The venue (Daunts in Marylebone) was not air-conditioned and the sweat was dripping off the guests. Guido didn’t waste much time hanging about.

The place was filled to gills with hacks and Guido had to push a few out of the way to make it to the drinks (sorry Emily). Admittedly Guido left early and the only MP Guido spotted was Charles Clarke. Perhaps the PM or the Blairs will drop in later, or perhaps not…

The Profundity of the Punditry : Janet Daley


Still looking for examples of Janet Daley’s stunning insights into Gordon Brown from last year. Send any gems you have found to Guido.Fawkes@Order-Order.com

Incidentally the Telegraph today repeats the mistake that the Tories have not taken a seat from Labour in a by-election for “30 years”, a mistake also made by the Sunday Times yesterday. That error was compounded by the article claiming Margaret Thatcher’s constituency was Grantham. Mistakenly they refer back to the famous Ilford North by-election of 1978 which presaged the fall of Jim Callaghan’s government. In fact the Tories more recently gained Mitcham & Morden from Labour in a 1982 by-election, when Maggie was of course actually MP for Finchley.

Balls Bashes Field for Brown

Ed Balls has just given an on the record briefing to the Lobby, the subject was Frank Field’s comments re-broadcast on Today this morning:
“I think people could look at what he was saying a few weeks ago and believe at that time that his intentions were honourable. As for what he said this morning I think I leave you to draw your own conclusions from that… I think it is very unlikely… that Frank Field will support any proposals that are brought forward by the government.”

So the 10p tax debacle is all Frank Field’s fault…


Seen Elsewhere

What Ruffley Standing Down Tells Us About Gove | James Forsyth
Tories Say They Could Sack Ruffley | Buzzfeed
Ruffley Supporter Provokes Outcry | HuffPo
Mirror Readies Pennies for Hacking Payouts | Media Guido
How to Win a Twitter Argument | Hopi Sen
Sign Petition Calling for Ruffley to Resign | Change.org
People’s PMQs Would Divide Politicians and Public | Dan Hodges
Morgan Hires Gay Rights Campaigner as SpAd | Telegraph
Don’t Underestimate Philip Hammond | Nick Wood
Labour Council Collaborates With Pro-Hamas Group | Breitbart
Qatar Sugar-Daddies of Islamist Financing | Left Foot Forward


new-advert
Westbourne-Change-Opinion Guido-hot-button (1)


New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:

“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”



Christie Malry @fcablog

Ed Miliband does photo oops, not photo ops


Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:






RSS


AddThis Feed Button
Archive


Labels
Guido Reads