Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Crony Crow Sues Over “Not Ken Again” Poster

Bob Crow, the RMT union boss hated by London’s commuters, has put the union’s money behind an attempt to stop theNot Ken Again advertising posters attacking Ken’s cronyism. He is wasting the RMT’s money because all the evidence is that he is Ken’s crony.

Team Ken have deliberately tried to keep London hate-figure Crow and his militant transport union out of the picture at all times during the campaign. Above is a mock-up of what would happen on May 4 if Londoners “Got Ken Again”.

The RMT boss is trying to get the crony posters blocked, yet Ken’s candidate for deputy mayor Val Shawcross is a member of the RMT and supports their strikes. During Livingstone’s first term Bob Crow served on the Transport for London board he chaired between 2002 and 2004. The records show ‘the chair welcomed Bob Crow to his first board meeting’. The favour was well received, last year Crow told LBC “I’ve never been apart from Ken. We have differences like I have with my brother and sister but overall, Ken’s a good bloke. Give us a shout Ken when you want some money”. Spoken like a true crony.

UPDATE: With perfect timing the RMT are planning to go on strike this afternoon.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Neck and Neck: Boris 51% v Ken 49%

Today’s YouGov/Evening Standard poll has Boris only two points ahead of Ken. Right back to where they were in February.

Two weeks to go…

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Caption Contest (Train Nutter Edition)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sky Debate Question for Tonight:
Did An Accountant Really Sign Off Ken’s Tax Declaration?

Ken said last month: “No journalist has contacted my accountant to ask anything about my tax arrangements. I’d be quite happy for them to do so.” So we called his accountant and he wasn’t happy to speak to us at all…

We called Ken’s accountant Peter Auguste to ask him why if he had signed off Ken’s released tax declaration as Team Ken claims, he had not put his name to the document? He refused to confirm he had in fact signed off the declaration. A week after Ken released his figures they then changed on his website. We think Ken was lying and that the figures were not in fact signed off by his accountant, who would not have got them wrong when by law they were signed off and sworn to be true in his annual returns to HMRC.

All of sudden Ken’s claimed income had risen from £164,055 to £205,800 and his tax paid from £113,861 to £131,606. Mysterious.

This might have something to do with the fact that – as he’s admitted to the Standard – he “forgot” to include in his declaration a “resettlement grant” he got from the GLA when he lost the mayoralty. But that resettlement grant was £71,000 – so even Ken’s new figures don’t seem to add up. So a simple question for Ken tonight. Were his released figures really produced by his accountant or by his campaign?

His accountant has refused to confirm to us he signed them off. There is no signature or letterhead on the released figures and the document properties appears to show that it was produced by Mark Watts. Watts is the name of Ken Livingstone’s former advisor whilst Mayor who joined his Parliamentary staff in 1999 and now works as a “Climate Change advisor”. Not an accountant…

Pro-Paddick Ad Fakes Riot Footage

Brian Paddick’s campaign are denying any official connection to a pro-Paddick video doing the rounds. Despite the insistence that it was done by an activist, it features Paddick footage and has been pushed heavily by LibDem HQ. The ad was clearly inspired by US Republican presidential wannabe Tim Pawlenty’s “Courage to Stand” video, and has high production values that do not come cheap.

The ad featuring plenty of TV coverage from the riots, but Guido is wondering when this doctored shot of London burning is from? Certainly not August 2011…

Lord Sugar Says Fire Ken

Leading Labour peer Lord Sugar has called on Londoners to ignore Ed Miliband’s explicit pleas for Labour types to vote Ken. He tweeted “Livingstone must NOT get in on 3rd May”. Followed by:

“I don’t care if Ed Miliband is backing Livingstone. I seriously suggest NO ONE votes for Livingston in the Mayoral elections.”

He could have given Boris a run for his money…

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Lobby Misses Ken Misspeak

Her Majesty’s Loyal Regiment of Hacks were treated to lunch with Ken Livingstone yesterday. Standing before them for the first time since 1985, the wine was flowing and he came out with some characteristic cant. It seems the gentleman of the Lobby were not on guard though, as they missed an absolute howler. Ken claimed: “I think Ed represents genuine Labour values. That’s why I voted for him.” Which isn’t true – Ken very publicly endorsed Ed Balls. He stumped for him and encouraged other people to vote for him. Pay attention lads…

Via Boris Backer

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Paddick: My £387,239 is “None Of Your Business”

Forced into a corner last night by Iain Dale on LBC, Brian Paddick did not deny that he had received at £387,239 taxpayer-funded pay-off from the Met when he retired in 2007, as revealed here yesterday. Instead he declared “to be honest with you, it’s none of your business” despite the public paying for it and the LibDem candidate cannily not releasing financial information for the year in question – “What is the point of publishing 2007/2008?”. Maybe he should avoid lecturing others on transparency while deliberately masking a huge source of income…

UPDATE:  We have just confirmed that Brian Paddick himself commented on the previous post last night:

We agreed to publish earnings and tax since the last election, that is:

2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12

There was no point in publishing 2007/08 because Ken Livingstone was mayor during that tax year, paying tax by PAYE, and had not yet set up his private company to avoid paying tax. Ken’s tax avoidance was the whole point of publishing our tax affairs.

No cover-up just bad journalism.

We will let the readers decide if the revelation was news to Londoners or bad journalism. Other candidates did reveal their 2007/08 figures…

Monday, April 16, 2012

Exclusive: Paddick Did Not Disclose £387,239 Met Pay-Off
‘Ello ‘Ello ‘Ello, Paddick Hides Evidence of Tax-Free Lump-Sum

While most of the focus has been on Ken and his lack of transparency recently, Guido did wonder why the LibDem candidate Brian Paddick only released the last three years of his financials, unlike the four years from the others. Guido has worked out why…

In the missing fourth back year (2007/8) Brian Paddick received a large lump sum as part of his leaving package from the Met. Whilst the debate about public sector pensions can be saved for another day and Guido can’t have a go at Paddick for accepting what was rightfully his, however absurdly generous it was, it was a little rum to deliberately try to hide the evidence. Guido and his bean counting co-conspirators have worked out that this pay off would have been just shy of £400,000. Tax free…

His campaign initially refused to comment on the figures. However we know that Brian Paddick earned £125,667 as Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the Met and he is on the 1987 Police Pension Scheme. His healthy pension is two thirds of his final salary (£83,778). The key figure is how much he commuted from an annual income into a lump sum and what commutation factor was applied…

Paddick retired at age 49 years and 1 month, so his commutation factor is 19. (Whilst the commutation factors are said to be from 1 October 2007, these were later backdated to 1 December 2006 following a judicial review.) From the figures that Paddick did release, we know that he receives an annual income from his pension of £63,397. Therefore he commuted the following amount (in terms of annual income forfeited) £83,778 – £63,397 = £20,381. So multiply that £20,381 by 19 and we get £387,239. And in a perk of the job this is tax free...

Guido suspects that in 2007/8 Paddick’s effective rate of income tax was even less than Livingstone’s 14.5%. In response to this figure a spokesman for Brian Paddick said: “All Mayoral candidates agreed to publish their tax details from the last Mayoral election in 2008. Brian has fulfilled this commitment, unlike certain other candidates.” The agreement was four years if we are going to be picky…

WATCH: Ken’s Tax Downfall

As Parliament returns after an extended Easter break, here’s a handy catch up guide to what you have missed in the race to become Mayor of London…


Seen Elsewhere

‘Queers for Palestine’ | Milo Yiannopoulos
Tories Attack Labour on Tax | Mark Wallace
UKIP No Flash In Pan | Matthew Goodwin
12 Signs It’s Time to Get Out of Gaza | Slate
Mars Lawyers Slam Plain Packaging | CityAM
HealthCare.gov Construction Cost $840 Million | Wall Street Journal
Why Do Feminists Oppose Stay-at-Home Mothers? | Laura Perrins
Chris Cook’s “Excellent Journalism” | Iain Dale
The Deficit Hasn’t Gone Away | Tim Montgomerie
Doctors Against Burnham | Mail
Privatisation is Good for the NHS | John McTernan


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Knifed former civil service chief Bob Kerslake on his recent troubles:

“Many thks for kind wishes following back opn. Incision measured 16cm. A pretty big knife in the back! Photos on request.”



TJ says:

And i’ve noticed that 100% of Guido Fawkes staff are men. Looks like Guido has a woman problem. Or is it an hypocrisy problem?


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