Wednesday, October 9, 2013

SKETCH: Royal Mail Offer Price – Political or Economic?
Vince Cable in Front of Business Innovation and Skills

In view of the offer being so over-subscribed, the question the committee repeatedly asked was: is the Royal Mail offer undervalued?

Vince Cable said that was the sort of observation made by grey-market, fly-by-night, speculating outliers on the fringes of the financial community and his irresponsible opposite number (Chuka Umunna).

He didn’t carry the committee.

Adrian Bailey in the chair said he had been an auctioneer in a previous life. “If I pitched a price and thirty hands went up I’d know I’d underpriced it.”

The minister thought that to float shares wasn’t an auction. In what way he didn’t say.

Labour and Tory members wanted to know how he would judge whether he had underpriced the issue. If the price went up 10, 20, 40, 50 per cent, would that cause him to blush at all? He was going to ignore such froth, he said. He wasn’t going to take a snapshot seriously.

Prices, pah!

But what about the 23 acres of prime London property that might be sold for billions by a clever asset-stripping management in a rocketing market?

The minister said such an outcome would assume a serious error had been made in the valuation. “And I don’t buy that,” he said.

Neither do. I can’t afford it.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Yellow on Yellow: Cable Cabinet Clash


It has been widely reported today that Danny Alexander and Vince Cable are barely on speaking terms, with the Mail this moring added that the tension boiled over last Tuesday at Cabinet. Guido hears that Vince was giving a presentation on SMEs when Grant Shapps and Oliver Letwin turned on the Business Secretary, suggesting that  while the government is ‘bureaucracy busting’ Cable is ‘doing the opposite at BIS’ and ‘creating new red tape’. Much to the surprise of everyone, not least Vince, Alexander then weighed in on the attack, agreeing that Cable should be doing more to tackle red tape. Guido’s eyes and ears in the room say Uncle Fester got incredibly defensive and looked even more miffed than usual by the end. No wonder he’s grumpy this week. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

LibDems Smash Another Manifesto Commitment

Vince Cable stood, and was elected in Twickenham, on a manifesto commitment to hold an In/Out referendum on Europe yet today he will say such a ballot will “weaken Britain’s ability to deliver more reform inside the EU”. He is planning on slamming the Tories for encouraging “uncertainty” with a vote. Another smashed LibDem promise. And they wonder why everybody hates them…

Monday, September 24, 2012

Cable Ad-Lib Bashes Thrasher

Vince Cable has gone off Coalition message during his LibDem party conference speech, not wasting the opportunity to twist the knife into Andrew Mitchell. Cable’s speech was almost identical to the copy given out to hacks by LibDem press shortly before, except for one cutting line:

“I’m told jokes about social class are not good for the Coalition, but as a mere pleb I couldn’t resist it”. 

With friends like these…

Monday, September 10, 2012

Rich & Mark’s Monday View

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Vince Spending More Money on Spin

Business Secretary and obvious shoo-in for the next LibDem leader Vince Cable is on the lookout for a new spinner. His department is advertising for new comms man and are offering a generous £80,000 per year to the successful candidate. Apparently “personal credibility, political nous and sound judgement will be essential“. Someone should tell Vince…

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Vince Cable Comes Out Against Gay Marriage

Just days after Nick Clegg flew the rainbow flag and declared a “new era of pride” in Britain, Vince Cable has announced that he considers changing the law to allow gay marriage “unnecessary“. Despite committing to voting for the government’s proposals, Vince told a constituent: “on the issue of same-sex marriage, my own personal view is that the status quo is fine, with same-sex couples being able to commit in a civil partnership.Free vote for the Tories, whipped for the LibDems…

Monday, July 2, 2012

Flip-Flop: Vince Cable on EU Referendum
Was For It Before He Was Against

Vince Cable consistently counter-attacks whenever the Tory right bangs on about an EU referendum. Following Dave’s bewildering Sunday Telegraph piece at the weekend, Cable said that talk of a referendum was “horribly irrelevant“. Odd then that back in 2007 before the Eurozone meltdown got going Vince was rather more positive about the idea:

We see a referendum as an opportunity to have a proper debate about the future of Britain’s relationship with the EU. No-one under the age of fifty – including the current Foreign Secretary – has had a say on Britain’s membership of the EU. An in-out referendum would give people a vote on the broad issue. We trust the people to make a decision about whether we should stay in or get out. We must flush our opponents out of their bunkers and challenge them to make clear their positions on this fundamental issue for the future of our country.”

From a “fundamental issue” to “horribly irrelevant” in just a few years. A LibDem abandoning their principles once they’ve entered the corridors of power – fancy that…

See also: Cable Flip-FlopsGuy News : Cable’s Flip-Flop Smackdown

Monday, January 23, 2012

Labour Chuka Spanner in Works

Credit where credit is due: Chuka may not be so hot on polling, but he has ruined Vince Cable’s week. The Social Market Foundation website has a heavy trail for Cable’s speech tomorrow lunchtime on reforming executive pay. So heavy that you might wonder why such an announcement was not being made to Parliament first. Well now it will have to be, as Cable’s shadow has been granted an Urgent Question forcing the Business Secretary to bring the announcement forward to this afternoon and give it to the proper audience – parliament. There goes the grid…

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Balls Claims the Mantle of Keynes
Cable Says Keynes Would Support the Coalition

Ed Balls told the Fabians that one of his most precious material belongings is a first edition of a Keynes pamphlet, “The Economic Consequences of Mr Churchill”. Keynesianism is the chosen intellectual mantle that Balls is trying to use with the Labour base to justify pivoting towards the voters and away from union demands for ever more deficit spending and borrowing. Already the Labour left are screaming “sell-out“.

Earlier this year Vince Cable argued that Keynes would not support the demands of latter day über-Keynesians. Cable reminds us that the politicisation of Keynes as a heavy spender is misplaced because Keynes was a liberal, not a socialist and he was writing at a time when the level of state spending in the economy amounted to half of today’s level. Keynes was not a friend of socialism, his policies were intended to save capitalism. Would Keynes have believed government deficit spending at twice the share of GDP as in the 1930s was desirable or sustainable? Cable thinks not, does Balls?

The proof will be in the policy pudding, Labour politicians reflexively oppose every reduction in welfare spending, they are conditioned to do no other. Even when senior Labour politicians know it is electorally toxic, for example opposing the £26,000 housing benefit cap, the “progressive” logic of maximum welfarism that grips their activists brooks no reason. Ed Balls can’t command credibility until he accepts that the deficit is a problem that has to be addressed rather than just acknowledged in theory. In interviews he now says vaguely that he wants to bring down the deficit, yet he is on the record during the Labour leadership election, where he ran from the left, as opposing even Alistair Darling’s modest deficit reduction proposals. Balls ideologically opposes as “too fast, too far” spending restraint by the Coalition. It is hard to believe that Balls isn’t now repositioning towards the centre again for purely electoral reasons, rather than some Damascene rejection of deficit denial.


Seen Elsewhere

Bookies v Pollsters: What We Learned From IndyRef | Paddy Power
Guido’s Column | Sun
Elite’s Obsession With Climate Change Alarmism | David Keighley
Charities Should Not Demonise Freud | ConHome
Double Standards of Police Leaks to Guardian | Mail
My Year in Court | Charlie Brooks
Legalise Pot | NY Times
Spooks Recruited IRA Paedo | Mirror
How Police Hack Phones and Email | Times
Labour’s Minimum Wage Pledge Not Ambitious | Alan Milburn
Lord Freud’s Comments | Ryan Bourne


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


Chris Bryant talks to the Times Diary about a famous gay actor:

“I don’t think I’ve had sex with him. He says we had sex in Clapham. I’m fairly certain I’ve never had sex south of the river”



Progressive Inclusion Champion says:

Great to hear Carswell call for inclusive policies and that UKIP must stand for first and second generation immigrants as much as the English.


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