Govt whips apparently asked pro-EU Dennis McShane if he cld speak against my Bill to quit EU. Hilarious!
— Douglas Carswell (@DouglasCarswell) October 25, 2012
When you need a thief to fight your corner, you know you’re on the wrong side…
— EP PressService (@EuroParlPress) October 23, 2012
We pay for this press office…
How encouraging to see Tory MEPs Vicky Ford and Marina Yannakoudakis speak out against an EU diktat proposing to force companies to introduce a 40% quota for female board members. Ford has voiced her opposition in no uncertain terms: “yes diverse boards are a good thing, but rigid quotas go too far for me.” Marina also chipped in: “I oppose compulsory quotas. Quotas for women distort equality.”
Funny then that back in 2008 both Vicky and Marina received fewer votes than their male rivals and owe their seats in the European Parliament, that’s right, to a quota. Both MEPs only won seats due to the preferential ranking system for women used in the elections. One Brussels insider tells Guido:
“The sheer audaciousness of Ford and Yannakoudakis is astounding. It sticks in my gut to see these two superannuated flibbertigibbets attempting to derive political capital out of quotas – the very same process that handed them their seats.”
Referendum-pledging Dave admitted in PMQs today that he actually doesn’t want an in/out referendum at all, but merely a “new settlement with Europe”, whatever that means. Effectively he is saying that the only choice he will give the British public is whether they want to stay in the EU… or stay in the EU. Ukip gain.
UPDATE: James Forsyth has the detail in tomorrow’s Spectator about Cameron’s plan:
“As a precursor to this renegotiation, the coalition is undertaking a ‘balance of competences’ review. This might sound a thoroughly dull, bureaucratic exercise. But it is terribly important because for the first time it will reveal just how much the European Union influences our national life. It will call for evidence from government departments, business, civil society, think tanks and parliamentary committees. And the government plans to publish the evidence submitted.
The review won’t make any recommendations, but when it concludes in 2014 it will form the evidential basis for renegotiation. Cameron’s plan is, before Christmas, to commit to a referendum after the next election. The Cameroons hope that this will be enough to satisfy the party’s Eurosceptics. Conservative strategists believe such a move would check Ukip’s advance. The prospect of Nigel Farage’s merry band pushing the Conservatives into third place in the European elections in 2014 sends many of them into cold sweat, and worse.”
Guido is not sure that will be enough to buy off the growing legion of ‘merry men’…
Today 2,000 zombies invaded London as part of World Zombie Day, Guido prefers Conservative Way Forward’s invasion of the Euro zombies…
Norwegian television confirms that the European Union is the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. And no it’s not a Daily Mash spoof. Presumably the EU deserves the prize for its sterling effort helping to plunge the world into economic crisis? Or maybe for its excellent work in Syria? This is even more absurd than the time they awarded it to Obama for his peace-spreading drone strikes in North Pakistan…
Nigel Farage: this goes to show the Norwegians really do have a sense of humour
— Nicholas Watt (@nicholaswatt) October 12, 2012
UPDATE II: As Greece heads towards civil war it might be worth noting the Dalai Lama’s view this morning:
Peace isn't the mere absence of violence; peace must come from inner peace. And inner peace comes from taking others’ interests into account
— Dalai Lama (@DalaiLama) October 12, 2012
Surprise, surprise – Dave will not be using his party conference speech to tackle the issue of an EU referendum. Instead, Nick Robinson is being briefed that the PM will make a “major speech” on Europe before the EU leaders’ summit in December. Where have we heard that one before…
With cast iron Cam backtracking already, it has reached the stage that whatever he says won’t be enough. Today has seen more speculation about a Tory-UKIP pact. But now Cameron seems even further away from making a promise signed in blood…
Nigel Farage has lost his appeal for a €2,990 fine for accusing EU President Herman Van Rompuy of having the charisma of a “damp rag” or a “low-grade bank clerk.” Apparently the UKIP leader will now have “to bear his own costs and to pay those of the European Parliament.” As Zero Hedge says, they clearly want him to pay off the EU’s debts one fine at a time.
Farage says he is now weighing up his options of further appeal but stands by the “freedom of speech of all elected members, not just for supporters of the EU’s political union.” The press over here have been exceptionally quiet about all this, and thus it’s fallen to Drudge and the Washington Post across the pond to pick it up. Farage’s people tell Guido that they have been inundated with offers from Americans to pay the fine:
“One man was so determined he said that he was going to pay almost the whole lot but as he was only a driver we had to wait until April 2013 to get the money – which obviously we aren’t going to take but it’s lovely to know that there are people in the world who value freedom of speech.”
The silence over here is rather odd.
The referendum calls have been gathering pace over the last few days, and they will hardly be sated by the latest findings from the Freedom Association pressure group. Their new report out today is claiming that the UK is £150 billion a year worse off as a result of being a member of the EU. That’s 10% of GDP.
With Jose Manuel Barroso calling for a “federation of nation states” it’s hardly surprising that 50 MPs have signed up to a new all-party referendum group. And still Dave made the point of not promoting eurosceptics in the reshuffle…
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Labour Turn Their Backs on Jewish Community | Dan Hodges
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Jonathan Jones is a Tw*t | Iain Dale
Second Scotland Poll Suggests Labour Wipeout | Times
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Zac Goldsmith: “The hon. Gentleman might like to know that today’s Guido Fawkes quote of the day is the one on drug laws that we have heard cited by a number of hon. Members.”
Mike Hancock: “I am delighted to hear that Guido Fawkes is talking about something other than me.”