Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Only 20 Pilgrims Left in Whitehall

Updated figures from the Cabinet Office appear to show that there are only 20 full time trade union ‘pilgrims’ still (not)working in government departments.

This is down from 200 civil servants in November 2011 who were paid not to work, but to instead undertake trade union activity in business hours.

Francis Maude is playing it as a £6 million saving per year.

Victory is almost in sight. Target zero.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Dave’s Designer Hairdresser Denies Bald Patch

Client confidentiality is assured with Lino Carbosiero MBE, the PM’s designer hairdresser.

Appearing on Sky News to deny his gong was anything to do with the fact he re-branded Dave’s sidey, the smooth talker claimed there was no bald patch.

Which would  the cameras…

And in his never ending quest for impartiality, Guido put it to Labour:

“Ed doesn’t have one person that cuts his hair. He sometimes goes to the local barbers.”

A man of the people. The mystery remains about Osborne’s radical redesign…

Monday, January 6, 2014

Osborne Promises Another £12 Billion Benefits Salami Slice

Talking the talk, Osborne has claimed “government is going to have to be permanently smaller and so is our welfare system”. Finally, if he is to be believed, the Tories will be “permanently cutting people’s taxes by permanently cutting spending”. He’s making the right noise at least, but when?

The Chancellor has pledged a further £12 billion of cuts to benefits from 2015 to 2017, yet the overall bill is £174.3 billion. Barely a dent. From the gloomy tones of the speech it’s not looking likely that tax cuts will come this side of an election either. This looks like playing politics rather than any genuine commitment to walking the walk.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Maggie’s Children Unimpressed With Autumn Statement
Burns: ‘We are Dying a Third More Slowly’

Speaking at a packed London fundraiser for the Margaret Thatcher Centre last night, Maggie’s representative on earth, Conor Burns, cut through the euphoria being felt in some parts of the Conservative Party this morning:

“I am convinced if Margaret Thatcher were still here today, if she and Keith Joseph and all the others that set off on that radical revolution from 1979, if they were here today, they would be thinking that their principles – those of personal responsibility, freedom under the rule of law, taxation that incentivises people to do better –  could equally be applied to the challenges of the next thirty years as they so successfully applied them to the challenges of the thirty years after they set off.

Tomorrow we will have the Autumn Statement, the government will congratulate itself on some if it’s successes. we will be told we maybe borrowing maybe ten billion fewer than we thought we might be borrowing a year ago. We will be told the deficit is down by a third, it’s all good news but it’s like going to the doctor and the doctor telling you that you are dying a third more slowly. This is not exactly a universal cause for celebration.”

Somehow Guido can’t picture Osborne using that particular analogy this morning.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

That Permanent Austerity in Full

The usual bedwetters are lining up this morning to proclaim that Cameron signalled never-ending austerity last night. They’re moaning about ideology etcetera.

Have a look at what Dave actually said:

“We have a plan – and we are carefully implementing that plan. Already we have cut the deficit by a third. And we are sticking to the task. But that doesn’t just mean making difficult decisions on public spending. It also means something more profound.

It means building a leaner, more efficient state. We need to do more with less. Not just now, but permanently.

It can be done. Consider these facts. There are 40 per cent fewer people working in the Department for Education – but over 3,000 more free schools and academies, with more children doing tougher subjects than ever before. There are 23,000 fewer administrative roles in the NHS – but 5,000 more doctors, with shorter waiting times. So you can have a leaner, more efficient, more affordable state that actually delivers better results for the taxpayer.”

Guido will believe the “leaner, more efficient, more affordable state” when he sees it, but it is hardly an unreasonable aim? What do the left have against being careful with taxpayers’ money? If you are opposed to efficiency, then you are the ideological one…

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Hammond’s PPS: Shutting Portsmouth Threatens Safety of UK

Phillip Hammond’s PPS Penny Mordaunt has not always been this quiet about the naval shipyard in her constituency. In January she wrote in the House magazine:

“Speculation, fuelled in part by the President of the Board of Trade, has it that Portsmouth shipyard will close for buildwork. Naturally, Portsmouth’s economic future is at the fore of my mind, but I am equally concerned about sovereign capabilities and the affordability of the new fleet.”

The rousing article concluded:

“A decision to close Portsmouth would not just be the wrong choice of port; it would be the wrong approach to Britain’s future navel defences and growth agenda. Britain needs Portsmouth.”

So if shutting Portsmouth was bad for growth and UK security in January, what has changed since then? Besides Penny’s promotion…

 

Friday, May 10, 2013

At Last! A Spending Cut From Labour

Later today Shadow Media Minister Helen Goodman will promise Labour’s first cut in public spending:

Building One Digital Nation 

Helen Goodman MP will announce today (Thursday 9 May) that Labour would invest £75 million in a new programme that would focus on getting more people online and improving people’s digital skills. This new programme would be funded by halving the size of the government’s current super-connected cities programme.

Helen Goodman MP said:

 “There are about 10 million people in the UK who don’t know how to send an email and around 16 million who don’t have other basic digital skills. A Labour government would invest £75 million to ensure that people in Britain are able to get online and are able to perform basic tasks like sending an email.

DCMS sources enthusiastically point out that they are already spending £150 million doing just this. Finally, a firm commitment to cut from Labour…


Seen Elsewhere

UKIP Fundraiser Was Jailed for Running Brothels | Times
Bercow Faces Probe Over Pass Mystery | Mirror
Harman Breaks Rules on Paying Staff | Express
Labour Whinge About Sandi Toksvig Joke | Mail
BBC Boss Search in Disarray | Times
Tory Membership Set to Outstrip Labour | Staggers
Three Cheers for the David Brents | Ed Conway
Small State Keynesians, Anti-Corporate Hayekians? | Chris Dillow
Ruffley Shows Why We Need a Proper Recall Bill Now | Alex Wickham
How is Miliband’s ‘New Politics’ Working Out? | Speccie
State Should Send More Poor Children Private | Sam Bowman


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Damian McBride writes in the epilogue to his memoir…

“At the time of writing, nine months from the election, I’ve concluded that Labour currently has no positive messages to communicate to anyone about why they should vote for the party, no policies which will persuade them, and is being run in a totally dysfunctional way.”



Rob Wilson says:

Without Predujice

Darling

What time will dinner be ready this evening?

Yours

Rob Wilson MP

In the interests of me I am placing a copy of this email in the public domain.


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