Friday, July 13, 2007

Boris – Latest

Nominations close 10 a.m. Monday – expect Boris to make an announcement on the day – not sure if it will be the announcement many hope for…

Logo from the 700 strong Backing Boris group on Facebook

Come On Then, If You Think You Are Hard Enough

Basher Davis is advertising for a new staff member. He has a high-turnover of staff. The job specification requires that candidates are “calm under pressure”. An understatement…

Friday Caption Contest (Queen Edition)

CameroonHome.Com Coming Soon

In Westminster political blogging there are three unofficial party affiliated sites which try to be the public voice of the grassroots. ConservativeHome is the daddy of them all, LabourHome is a technically superior site with far inferior content and a lack of editorial direction. LibDemVoice is a bit too much of an outlet for Cowley Street stuff that could be put in press releases.
Guido has been hearing rumours about a new CameroonHome site which Fraser Nelson has outed as going under the title Platform 10. Ex-Dave-Babe Fiona Melville is the motivating force behind it, backed by a 15-strong editorial team of mainly ex-CCHQ staffers lined up as contributors, but apparently with no full time editor. Steve Hilton has, it is believed, wanted an alternative Conservative grassroots voice to counter-balance the critical but friendly voice of Tim Montgomerie. Guido guesses it won’t work unless it is honest about issues. That is the strength of ConservativeHome, it explores the issues critically, and in doing so has improved the Tory internal debate. If CameroonHome becomes just a platform for “Dave is Great” stories in the same way that LibDemVoice ignores the “Ming Problem” it will be just another boring e-Pravda adjunct of the official party site. We shall see…

Mayor Boris

Andrew Pierce in the Torygraph is speculating that we could get an announcement of a Boris candidature today.

“I’m Backing Boris” T-shirts are on order. C’mon Boris…

UPDATE : ConservativeHome is reporting that the Boris website was showing this earlier – so it looks like it the game is on! T-shirts coming…
UPDATE II : Boris’ on-blog announcement is still in the archive.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Informed Sources?

Everybody, everywhere, has been going through Campbell’s The Blair Years so Guido hasn’t bothered. But one little snippet has caught the eye and proves a point. Phil Webster, The Times’ political editor, gets a little testy whenever Guido or his own colleagues hint or suggest that he is a less than objective Brownite patsy.

So Guido wonders how he will feel about this comment about a time in October 1997 when New Labour faced a little PR difficulty; “The words went to Webster, the spin was applied, and away we went,” writes Alastair. Kind of gives the game away…

Honest Cabal Government

Alistair Darling in Treasury Questions this morning appeared to have taken his boss’ instructions to be open and honest perhaps a little too seriously. When pressed about Gordon Brown’s premiership, he said: “I think it’s safe to say that the honeymoon has come to an end.”

While we are on the subject of his boss, what happened to “an end to Sofa Government?” Wasn’t it only last week, during the Brown honeymoon, that we were told that Gordon believed in Cabinet government and the merits of the Civil Service? So did the cabinet discuss the major policy change that is the Casinos U-turn? No.

Tax Cutting LibDems

Political cross dressing is getting increasingly complex, Vince Cable is advocating a 16% starting rate for income tax, abolishing tax breaks on capital gains and pensions plus raising “dirty” taxes. They admit they don’t really aim to cut taxes, just shift the burden around.

Cutting the tax code, raising the stamp duty and inheritance tax threshold are all good, but clobbering capital gains will discourage enterprise and investment. Retirees are in enough trouble after Gordon’s Great Pension Grab without taxing them even more.

Can’t help feeling sorry for multi-millionaire Chris Huhne, it came out during the LibDem leadership battle that he was a prolific investor in capital gains tax shelters…

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

That Mobile Phone Video Viral

If you have not already received the SMS text message with the link to that very amusing Gordon Brown viral video going round Westminster, you can just type


into your mobile phone browser. You do need to have a web-enabled phone, PDA or Blackberry. The free download takes a couple of minutes, but is well worth waiting for…

Everyone is Backing Boris

Despite the fact that Guido rarely meets anyone who doesn’t want Boris to run, the issue is troubling Guido, with less than a week to go before nominations close things are still unclear. The Backing Boris Facebook group has gained over 500 members in a few days, a small but telling indicator of his popularity.

Boris has intimated that the opinion of his constituency supporters is crucial. So Guido emailed them to encourage them to look favourably on Boris running for Mayor. You can too by emailing soca@oxfordshireconservatives.com.

The prospect of Steve Norris losing to Ken again fills Guido with dread. Why would the Tories repeat the pattern? C’mon Boris…


Seen Elsewhere

Comply or Die at Grauniad | MediaGuido
Labour Beats UKIP in South Yorkshire | LabourList
Mock the Week’s Weak Comedy | Nigel Farage
Can Jim Murphy Save Scottish Labour? | Guardian
There is Still Appetite for the Westminster Lunch | Jon Craig
Labour Turn Their Backs on Jewish Community | Dan Hodges
Chivalry is Not Dead | Laura Perrins
Jonathan Jones is a Tw*t | Iain Dale
Second Scotland Poll Suggests Labour Wipeout | Times
Paedo Probe Boss Urged to Quit | Sun
Keynesian Tories Won’t Eliminate Deficit | Tim Montgomerie


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