Thursday, June 27, 2013

Double-Dip Recession Never Actually Happened

osbbSlightly better news for Shamburger George this morning: Office of National Statistics revised figures say there was not actually a double-dip recession. GDP growth between Q4 2011 and Q1 2012 has been revised from a fall of 0.1% to flat. Whether that’s what people will be taking about round the water cooler is another thing. Byron to celebrate? 

UPDATE: Everything you need to know courtesy of this ONS video:

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Tory Uproar as Labour’s Toby Perkins “Flipped Osborne Finger”

Watch closely for the reaction of the PM and the Tory benches as Osborne asks Labour about their spending plans. Cameron’s face turns to shock as he and a number of other Tories point towards Labour MP Toby Perkins, sitting on the third row. From the video it is not clear why. Tory MPs are adamant this afternoon that it was because Perkins “flipped Osborne the finger”.

As Bercow intervenes you can hear a Tory MP shout “it’s Perkins!”. Guido is told that a Tory MP then passed a note to the Speaker making the allegation against Perkins, Bercow then ripped the note up and put it in his pocket. Perkins’ office are currently refusing to comment. All very parliamentary…

GRAPH: Cuts By Department

Pickles shows himself as the “model of lean government” with a 10% cut, alongside Grayling and Maude, while the Chancellor leads by example. Hammond and May get off lightly…

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

WATCH: Jeffrey Joke Falls Flat

Labour’s Anas Sarwar becomes the first to make a Jeffrey joke in the House, no doubt to the annoyance of many a bookie. He could have at least made it funny…

Friday, June 21, 2013

WATCH: Treasury Playdays

Learn with George as he explains how he will “help people who work hard and want to get on” at next Wednesday’s spending round. A helpful piece of taxpayer-funded Tory propaganda. Osborne spells it out very slowly for Ed Balls…

Osborne Borrowed More Last Year

Turns out government borrowing actually rose last year. Revised ONS figures show public sector borrowing for 2012-13 was £118.8 billion, up from £118.5 billion the year before. This week’s Speccie cover article gets to the point:

“When the Chancellor stands up to present his spending review next Wednesday it will be with the reputation of a crazed axeman. Much of the country, whether it thinks it a good thing or not, subscribes to the belief that George Osborne is shrinking the state year-on-year, slicing here, chopping there. In a recent poll 58 per cent of respondents agreed with the proposition that Osborne’s ‘austerity drive’ is ‘harming the economy’… Osborne is no mad axeman but a bodger blundering around with a blunt chisel.”

Osborne wants to portray himself as a responsible, sound money Chancellor making tough choices, streamlining an overbearing state and making government more efficient. The truth is borrowing, and as the graph below shows, spending is still going up:

The Treasury is pushing the fact that borrowing fell last month year-on-year, which is encouraging. But to say they are not doing enough is an understatement…

See also: Tale of Two Austerities

Thursday, June 20, 2013

LISTEN: The Osbornes, George and Jeffrey Duet


Courtesy of the World at One, together for one performance only, take it away….

Jeffrey Osborne

Story of the week from the Sun: Obama called Osborne Jeffrey three times at the G8 summit, confusing him with the soul singer:

20130620-085540.jpg

Come back Mitt, all is forgiven…

UPDATE:

20130620-085835.jpg

Via @FelicityMorse

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Stranger Things Have Happened…

… Though not many. The baronetcy heir apparent tests the effects on the working man of his 1p cut to the price of beer, pulling a pint for Tom Watson in parliament’s Strangers bar last night. Sampling the latest from his local brewery, called Pennies from Eleven apparently. Must not make eye contact…

Via @michaeldughermp

Monday, June 10, 2013

Safe Hands Harrison

As Guido reported in his Sun column yesterday, congratulations are due to the man known as the Chancellor’s “brain”, Rupert Harrison, on the birth of his son. Returning to work following 3 weeks paternity leave, the Treasury whizz kid has been christened by his boss George Osborne as “safe hands Harrison”. After the midwife was delayed on the way to the home-birth, Harrison delivered the baby himself.


Seen Elsewhere

Cracknell v Boris | Sun
British Muslims are Failing to Integrate | Dan Hodges
Dear Sarah Wollaston… | ASI
Treatment of Ashya King’s Family Authoritarian | Brendan O'Neill
Stop the War Should Disband | Rob Marchant
State Should Not Act as Parent | Kathy Gyngell
Guido’s Column | Sun
Don’t Bottle Schools Revolution | Dom Cummings
Sack Bercow | Melanie Phillips
Tories Should Have Open Primary in Clacton | Mark Wallace
Osborne Tricked Into Haircut | Janan Ganesh


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Douglas Carswell…

“I stab people in the front, not the back.”



Owen Jones says:

We also need Zil lanes.


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