MP’s Social Media Expenses Paid to Labour Crony

RUTH CADBURY TECH

If an MP had spent a whopping £7,000 of taxpayers’ money on top tech gear, “comms management” and social media training, you would expect to see some results. Ruth Cadbury billed the taxpayer for a Macbook Pro, an iPad Air 2 and an office full of new computers, as well as funnelling £2,575 to former Gordon Brown SpAd Caroline Badley to teach her, among other things, how to use social media. Your money well spent? After the social media splurge Ruth has a measly 680 Facebook followers, just 5,000 odd Twitter followers, and a grand total of zero YouTube subscribers. Is this taxpayer cash actually being spent on anything or is it just lining the pockets of a Labour crony?

Scrapbook Exclusive Stays Exclusive

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The managed decline of part-time Labour attack blog Political Scrapbook continues apace. This morning’s top Scrapbook scoop is headlined: “Liam Fox is Trying to Become UK’s Foreign Secretary, Again!”. A rehash of a story in the Sunday papers which they haven’t even managed to copy correctly – Dr Fox was never Foreign Secretary. It wasn’t just a typo, the error is repeated twice in the copy: “Fox isn’t about to give up on becoming UK Foreign Secretary again”, and “It’s only taken five years for Fox to plot his way back into the Foreign Office”. No one has even pointed out the triple error in Scrapbook’s comments, because no one reads it any more…

UPDATE: Over an hour since the Scrapbook post and tweet went up, it still hasn’t been corrected…

4% of Jewish Labour Movement Backs Corbyn

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Jezza’s “Zionist” problem…

Labour Has More Members Than All Other Parties Combined

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Source: House of Commons Library

This is the enigma of the Corbyn surge, it has intense appeal to the minority of people who are interested in left-wing politics. The Labour Party now has a membership to the left of its representatives. This is not a sustainable position for a democratic organisation. Either it splits, MPs move to the left or the moderate MPs bide their time in sullen opposition. Of course it is not impossible that a left-wing Labour Party could win a general election one day…

Oily Smith’s NHS Speech Fact-Checked

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Owen Smith puts his tinfoil hat on this morning to tell Labour voters that there is “a secret Tory plan to privatise the NHS”. Oily claims that under the Tories there has been “an explosion of privatisation” and that he “warned” against it. Is he telling the truth?

Fact-check 1: “explosion of privatisation”

In truth, the rate of growth in use of the private sector as a proportion of the NHS budget has slowed significantly since 2010. And the vast majority of NHS outsourcing took place under the last Labour government. “An explosion of privatisation” under the Tories is a big Oily porkie.

Fact-check 2: Owen Smith “warned” against privatisation

As a Pfizer lobbyist Smith called on his Labour government to improve incentives for the pharmaceutical industry. In 2006, when he was standing as a Labour candidate, Smith said this about NHS privatisation:

“Where they can bring good ideas, where they can bring valuable services that the NHS is not able to deliver, and where they can work alongside but subservient to the NHS and without diminishing in any respect the public service ethos of the NHS, then I think that’s fine. I think if their involvement means in any way, shape or form the break up of the NHS, then I’m not a fan of it, but I don’t think it does.”

Smith’s speech today is the same old tired and failed attack line used by Miliband and Burnham. It has even less merit coming from Oily given his previous Blairite pro-privatisation proclamations. Remember Corbynistas, Owen Smith believes privatising parts of the NHS is “fine”…

Is There a Justice Gender Gap?

MP Philip Davies has given a speech on ‘The Justice Gender Gap’ which has resulted in Jeremy Corbyn calling for him to have the Tory whip withdrawn. It is 45 minutes long and quotes a lot of facts and figures to make his case. Judge for yourself…

Saturday Seven Up

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This recess week 180,338 visitors visited 524,192 times viewing 803,036 pages. The top stories in order of popularity were:

You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

Farage Facial Hair

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Nigel Farage has grown a moustache. From another angle:

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Strong look.

Labour Wins Appeal to Block New Corbynista Voters

The Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of Labour and agreed that 130,000 new supporters who registered since January should not be allowed to vote in the Labour leadership contest. Will the Corbynistas appeal?

UPDATE: The five Corbynista complainants say they want to appeal to the Supreme Court but permission is refused.

Oily Smith Pleads to Speak to Momentum Rallies

Guido missed this snippet of Oily pleading for an audience at one of Jezza’s Momentum rallies. It comes over as a bit pathetic…

Friday Caption Contest: Lights Out Edition

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Entries in the comments please…

Hypocrisy of Holier-Than-Thou HuffPo

Fresh from HuffPo attacking hairdressers who failed to pay minimum wage, despite being themselves being sued for not paying writers minimum wage or indeed any wage at all, they switched to coverage of Olympics coverage. Specifically the presenters lack of skin coverage…

huff

HuffPo are delighting social justice warriors with their coverage of BBC presenter Helen Skelton at the Olympics. While other media has noted Helen’s short skirts in Rio, holier-than-thou HuffPo mocked their rivals with the headlines “Woman Wears Dress” and “Woman Who Wore Dress Also Owns Bra”Take that, MailOnline!

Yet a quick browse of the HuffPo site reveals they are obsessed with pointing out women wearing revealing clothes. Currently racking up the clicks on HuffPo today are stories about Kylie Jenner wearing a “naked jumpsuit”, Bella Hadid’s “nearly naked trend”, and another Kylie story about her “underboob”. Funny that these stories were not titled “Woman Wears Dress” too. Hypocritical HuffPo are feminists only when it’s good for traffic…

May Imposes Authority on Whitehall

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Much has been made of Theresa May’s formidable joint chiefs of staff Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill rigorously vetting new SpAd appointments. This isn’t really that out of the ordinary, Ed Llewellyn would do likewise during the Cameron era. What has changed under the new regime is the level of control exerted over everyday life on Whitehall. Over the couple of weeks Downing Street has imposed its authority on government departments, insisting that everything from minor campaign launches to bog standard press releases go through Number 10 first. Departments were used to a far higher degree of autonomy, now everything has to be signed off. To some it has felt like a slightly suffocating centralisation of power. Sensible for the first few weeks perhaps, but ministers are hoping the PM loosens her grip once she is settled in…

Missing From the FT Letters Page…

Upon hearing the news that Lionel Barber had been awarded the Legion d’Honneur, one reader wrote to the FT’s letters page to congratulate the editor on his gong. For some reason the letter hasn’t appeared in the pages of the Pink ‘Un, so Guido reproduces it here:

Sir,

May I, without fear or favour, be the first to congratulate you through the pages of your newspaper on your nomination for Chevalier, Legion d’Honneur. But why has this happy news not been reported elsewhere in your paper? False modesty is not your strongest suit.

This accolade is, of course, richly deserved for your unswerving devotion to the European Union and France’s role therein. Assuming you choose to accept, may I suggest that the rather ordinary surroundings presented by the French Embassy in London are not befitting of the occasion. A far more suitable venue would be the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles, scene of so many other diplomatic initiatives. The ceremony would not be complete without a very full attendance from your senior staff and I would be happy to volunteer to help a skeleton crew back in London get the paper out while you are away.

I’m sure we will manage to keep the party line going on your big day.

Modesty must have prevented publication…

Unison Backs Corbyn

corbyn

Unison has nominated Jeremy Corbyn for leader with 58% of the votes cast. That represents less than 1% of Unison’s total membership but Jezza’s campaign team are heartened that every region backed their man. Also worth giving yesterday’s much-vaunted GMB result backing Owen Smith some context. The GMB claims 631,000 members, but the low turnout means just 4.1% of those have declared in favour of Oily, compared to 2.8% backing Jez, so it was hardly the breakthrough Smith supporters were suggesting. Corbyn-backing Unite didn’t ballot their members but they did consult their policy conference of 1,000 or so rank and file members. He’s also backed by the Communication Workers Union, TSSA, ASLEF and the Bakers Union. Corbyn cleaned up with union affiliated last time…

Woolfe Claims UKIP Plot as Cops Say He Faces No Further Action

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Remember the curiously-timed revelation that Steven Woolfe was once nicked for being drunk in charge of a scooter? Well, a member of the public – surely not a rival ‘Kipper – called the cops and complained that he had broken the law again by failing to declare his conviction when he ran as a Police and Crime Commissioner.[…]

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Quote of the Day

Heather Wheeler talks to Burton Mail about her tweet…

“It was a tongue in cheek pop after the European Parliament tweet – it was purely that. I also wanted to congratulate Team GB on a brilliant result and thirdly congratulate the Commonwealth countries who also did very well. Fourth, I am also looking forwarded to establishing new trade agreements. That was it – nothing more. Let’s just enjoy the summer!”

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