Friday, October 17, 2014

Friday Caption Contest (Danny’s Easy Listening Edition)

The winner of today’s Caption Contest will receive a copy of “Billionaires”:

Darrell M. West’s book on the growing political activism of the super-rich looks at the influence, transparency and power relationships with government held by the wealthy, laying bare the wealthification of politics.

Make them witty…

UKIP Get Thumped in Their Target Seat

UKIP have been given a wake up call in Thurrock, losing heavily to Labour in a council by-election last night. Despite constituency polling putting UKIP’s parliamentary candidate Tim Aker in first place in the seat, Labour won West Thurrock and South Stifford by a thumping 50% to UKIP’s 35%. Thurrock is right up there among UKIP’s top target seats, where incumbent Tory MP Jackie Doyle-Price has a majority of 92 and the Labour candidate, carpet-bagging former SpAd Polly Billington, is struggling to make an impact. UKIP should have won Heywood and Middleton but fell 600 votes short because they just didn’t have the resources on the ground. At every test so far, UKIP’s field operation has been their biggest weakness and the old parties will be clinging to that next year. If the promised earthquake is to happen in May, they need to get their act together and start spending big bucks on their campaign infrastructure. 

UPDATE: UKIP sources say Labour were so scared there were shadow cabinet ministers out in Thurrock campaigning for a council by-election.

POLL: Who’s Right, Peter Oborne or Craig Oliver?

Peter Oborne went on Newsnight on Wednesday to express a rarely vocalised view in Westminster, namely that Craig Oliver is a “particularly grubby individual”:

No.10’s Super Spinner has responded in a letter published by Ephraim Hardcastle this morning, accusing Oborne of being drunk:

Dear Peter

I just wanted to check you are OK. Some BBC people have been on to me worried you were a bit tired and emotional last night.

Let me know if I can help.

Best wishes,

Craig Oliver.

To which Peter replies:

“I am absolutely astonished that an official working for the Prime Minister would use such terminology. It is offensive and inaccurate. I hope that when he has taken time to consider it he’ll withdraw these remarks which are unworthy of a Downing Street Director of Communications.”

Who was right?

Let the people decide…

Eagle Crash Landed
Watch Question Time Audience Turn on Labour Over Freud

Angela Eagle assumed she would automatically carry the Question Time audience with her as they discussed Lord Freud last night. Instead the room turned on Labour, jeering and heckling, coming down on the side of the stitched up welfare minister:

One audience member called Labour’s position “extremely disingenuous”, another was applauded by the whole room for calling out their “hypocritical point-scoring”, describing them as “disgusting”. Another said “the smirk on her face” showed Eagle knew she was telling fibs. If Labour can’t convince even the audience of Question Time, it suggests their attack on Freud may not have cut through as well as they’d hoped…

Thursday, October 16, 2014

So This Is Doing the Rounds of Asian Trading Floors…

An oriental co-conspirator points out that PUKI is Filipino for vagina… 

Charities Attacking Freud Backed Same Plans Under Labour

Guido has found more from Mencap on whether or not some disabled people should be exempt from the minimum wage. Here they are in February 2000 once again backing the very idea Lord Freud has got in so much trouble over:

“The minimum wage has helped many people with learning disabilities. But people who have severe learning disabilities are also employed, even though they may have a productivity rate of 30% of the average. An employer may say that they will pay someone £15 a week for doing 15 hours work – and generally everyone is happy with this. The person with learning disabilities isn’t excluded from a working environment, and gets to go on works dos and generally join in with the team. And it’s good for the rest of the team too. Unfortunately, if employers have to pay the minimum wage, they may have to let these valuable members of their staff go.”

Under Labour, Mencap used to support the proposal. Yesterday Mencap described it as “disgusting”A cynic might say their condemnation of Lord Freud was political…

And what about Scope, another disability charity? They were consulted on the 2003 Labour government document backing a policy more draconian that what Freud proposed. Yesterday they said Freud’s comments were “unacceptable”. Surely a reaction completely unrelated to their patron being Cherie Blair, their trustees including former Labour adviser Agnes Fletcher and Brent Labour member Jacqui Penalver, and their Director of External Affairs Mark Atkinson being a former Labour candidate. Not like a charity to be overtly partisan…

Ashcroft Poll Shows UKIP Turning Tory-Held Marginals Labour

Sobering polling for the Tories from Lord Ashcroft today, who has a snapshot of voting intentions in ten Tory-held marginals with Labour currently in second place (plus Corby, which went Labour mid-term). Nine of the eleven are Labour gains. Ashcroft concludes “swings to Labour appear to be related to the UKIP presence”, finding:

“UKIP could hamper Labour in Tory-held target seats by diverting voters who might otherwise switch straight from blue to red – though the evidence so far is that this effect is not yet strong enough in these seats to counteract the erosion of the Tory vote.”

28% of UKIP voters polled say they’d prefer a Labour government, 35% want a Tory win…

Owen Jones Admits His Book is Factually Incorrect
Owen Spinning 100% Wrong Establishment Statistic

Owen Jones in “The Establishment” quotes one powerful statistic to exemplify the incestuous nature of Britain’s elite, so good that since the book’s release it has gone viral. Jones claims a 2012 study shows 92% of the top 50 publicly traded firms in the UK have a British parliamentarian as a director or shareholder. It is a ‘fact’ he repeated in an article for Channel 4 News, and during his speech to the LSE this week:

It also turns out to be a big fat blooper. Jones sources the stat to a Democratic Audit report (page 290), but as internet sleuth Jeremy Duns points out, there are two glaring problems with this:

First, Jones’ source references the stat to a 2006 study, so the figure is from considerably earlier than Jones writes in his book. More importantly, Jones’ source actually says46 per cent of the top 50 publicly traded firms had a British MP as a director or shareholder”. Not 92% but 46%, half of what Jones claims. OJ now says it was a typo:

Except it hasn’t been corrected, the 92% figure is still there if you download the e-book this morning. And if Jones is telling the truth when he says he knows it is wrong and has been corrected, why did he repeat the incorrect stat to the LSE just three days ago? Jones is now blaming his publisher for the error, but his publisher didn’t give the LSE speech. Could it be that it just doesn’t suit his overinflated conspiratorial narrative?

Meanwhile Over in High Court 24

plebgate-mitchell-sun

COURT 24

Before MR JUSTICE MITTING

Thursday, 16th October 2014

At half past 10 Jury List

APPLICATION NOTICE

TLJ/14/0554 Mitchell v News Group Newspapers Ltd

TLJ/14/0554 Rowland v Mitchell

Another round in the £1 million Plebgate legal skirmishes which are making the lawyers rich.

The latter application is a damages claim by Police Federation backed police officer Toby Rowland against former chief whip Andrew Mitchell…

Mencap Called for Disabled to Be Exempt From Minimum Wage

This Guardian article from February 2000 reports calls for an “urgent revision” of the rules to enable “low output” disabled workers to be exempt from minimum wage legislation. The proposal said some disabled workers should be classified as “special provision” and as a result be exempt from statutory provision, thus allowing employers to pay them less than the minimum wage. This was not an off-the-cuff remark from a Tory peer, but a detailed proposal from Mencap, Britain’s leading charity for disabled people. 

Mencap said at the time that while they otherwise support the minimum wage, an exemption should be allowed because “Most people with a learning disability want to work and we urge the government to give them that chance.” Which is almost exactly the point Lord Freud was making. On the News at Ten last night the only mention that the entire Freud row was contrived at best came in the last line, so regardless of the rights and wrongs it’s a Labour win…

UPDATE: Sentiment below speaks for itself.


Seen Elsewhere

PC Worries Prevent Police Protecting Young Girls | Jill Kirby
Miliband Should Win Rochester | Martin Kettle
Thatcher Minister Sir John Nott ‘Voted for UKIP’ | Times
Time to Listen to Drugs Experts | Guardian
Drug Laws Don’t Work | Times
Our Moral Duty to Cut Taxes | David Cameron
Greens Ahead of LibDems | Guardian
Channel 4 to Spoof UKIP Election Win | Guardian
The Threat to Press Freedom | Paul Dacre
White House Scoop Strategy | Post
Labour Council Retweets BNP Endorsement | HandF Forum


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


David Cameron drug policy reformer and leadership contender in 2005…

“Politicians attempt to appeal to the lowest common denominator by posturing with tough policies and calling for crackdown after crackdown. Drugs policy has been failing for decades.”



“Digger” Murdoch says:

Is it just me, or is Nigel Farage just a top hat and a monocle away from being a Batman villain?


Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:






RSS


AddThis Feed Button
Archive


Labels
Guido Reads
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,552 other followers