Nigel Gets His Passport Wish

As Britain prepares to exit the EU at the end of October, Nigel Farage has joined thousands of others in receiving his new passport and discovering the words ‘European Union’ have now been removed by the Home Office. Guido hears Nigel is genuinely delighted. Shame it still isn’t blue…

Guido looks forward to Nigel using his new patriotic prop at future campaign rallies…

Has the Value Comeback Been Postponed?

Alex Crooke, Fund Manager for Bankers Investment Trust, explains why his predictions for the second half of the year have changed as political uncertainty continues to hamper business confidence. Alex also gives an update on asset allocation within the portfolio, particularly in light of the China-US trade war. See more here

This is a sponsored post by Janus Henderson Investors. These are the views of the author at the time of publication and may differ from the views of other individuals/teams at Janus Henderson Investors. Any securities, funds, sectors and indices mentioned within this article do not constitute or form part of any offer or solicitation to buy or sell them. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. The value of an investment and the income from it can fall as well as rise and you may not get back the amount originally invested. The information in this article does not qualify as an investment recommendation. For promotional purposes.

Labour’s Three Year Press Meeting Secrecy

Two years ago, Jeremy Corbyn came under fire for refusing to publish Labour’s quarterly list of meetings with senior media executives despite having committed to doing so. In response to this criticism, a Corbyn spokesperson promised the list of meetings would be published “in due course“. More than two years later, Labour still have not published a single detail of shadow cabinet meetings with media executives…

Following the Leveson Inquiry in 2012, both Ed Miliband and the Government vowed to come clean with quarterly lists of meetings with senior editors, media executives and owners. Labour kept this up until May 2016, however no such reports have been released since; meanwhile, the Government has routinely made this information public. Is Corbyn too frit to admit his cozy relationship with the Canary and Skwawkbox?

Corbyn’s Anti-Free Press Momentum Mob

Despite repeatedly attempting to call the Prime Minister ‘Britain’s Trump’, Corbyn emerged from his ‘Press Conference’ (campaign rally) today looking more like the US President than anyone. After applauding his own speech, the conference descended into what could generously be described as an anti-media pile on, with Corbyn’s baying followers preventing any criticism of their eternal leader by shouting down the press for daring to challenge one of the most senior politicians in the country. He’s following the Trump playbook to a tee…

In response to one woman’s anti-journalist rant, Corbyn half-heartedly said he supports the press, but will introduce dystopian-sounding “media reforms”. Change is coming…

Inspired by today’s speech? Why not play another game of Who said it? Corbyn or Trump…

SpAd Update: Think Tank Rank

As Guido revealed on the SpAd List at the end of last week, think tank supremos Emma Barr and Rupert Reid have started working for Grant Shapps at Transport, moving from the Centre for Policy Studies and Policy Exchange respectively. Policy Exchange is now giving the TPA a real run for its money in Guido’s alumni chart…

Guido can also reveal that legal boffin Rajiv Shah has joined experienced SpAd Peter Cardwell in the MoJ too. Timothy era May veteran Chris Brannigan has joined the team in Number 10 too, and former Parliamentary assistant to Scottish Secretary Alister Jack William Saunders has been promoted to become his Special Adviser.

UPDATE: Tees Valley Metro Mayor’s SpAd, Cameron Brown, has been hired as Jake Berry’s new advisor. Keep up with the continuously updated list here:

Email any additions to team@order-order.com…

IPPR’s Transport Report Comes Off the Rails

Left-wing think tank IPPR has released a report claiming “New analysis of the government’s planned transport spending shows that, unless investment in the Northern Powerhouse goes ahead, London is set to receive almost 3 times more per person than the North.” You would hope the IPPR would be keeping track of the details…

To reach these skewed numbers, the think tank has had to include private sector investment.  Yet they claim incorrectly in their press release that the “new analysis” is of “the government’s planned transport spending”. It quite simply is not. The train-wreck of a report implies that Government investment is highest in the South and lowest in the North. In reality, official figures show that the opposite is true…

Looks like their report has already come off the rails…

EU Exports Down Strongly, UK Exports Up Strongly

Remainers pointing to soft economic numbers in the UK should note that trade between euro-zone member states fell by 6.6% in June compared to the same period last year. That was the fastest such contraction since 2013. Exports from the eurozone to the rest of the world also dropped by 4.7%, the fastest rate since 2016. The EU can’t blame the fall in intra-bloc trade on China…

This is massively under-performing compared to exports of goods and services from the UK which grew 4.5% in June, the most since October 2016. Shipments of goods in particular surged 7.6%, driven by machinery & transport equipment. The euro looks over-valued…

Rich’s Monday Morning View

Government Repeals the European Communities Act 1972

As Guido reported he would on Friday, Steven Barclay has “signed the legislation setting in stone the repeal of the European Communities Act 1972. This is a landmark moment in taking back control of our law. It underlines that we are leaving the EU on October 31”. Back in 2012, after thousands of Guido’s readers mandated for him to do so in an innovative crowd-sourcing of legislation, Douglas Carswell presented a bill to Repeal the European Communities Act 1972:

Now Boris has made it happen. What a change from the days when a Tory government actively blocked the repeal. It has taken 7 years, we’re winning co-conspirators, we’re winning…

YouGov: Brits Prefer No Deal Brexit to PM Corbyn

YouGov has asked the public the question that has been dominating the political news agenda this week. By a whopping margin, Brits prefer a No Deal Brexit to Prime Minister Corbyn. Of those with a view, 58% would rather leave the EU on WTO terms…

Saturday 7-Up

This week 256,718 visitors visited 873,644 times viewing 1,356,884 pages. The top stories in order of popularity were:

You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

Sadiq Blimp Up For Sale On Ebay

The Sadiq Khan ‘blimp’ that was flown on Parliament Square has gone up for sale on Ebay. It was created in response to the ‘Trump Baby Blimp’ that Guido revealed Sadiq’s advisers over-ruled officials to ensure it would fly at an anti-President demonstration last summer. But now the battle of the blimps has deflated…

The item is described as being “used once” and in “Perfect condition, ready to fly!” Yours for just £16,100 or more…

Government Risks Banning Jelly Babies, Fudge, and Sherbet Lemons

Number 10 is at risk of continuing the last government’s public health fudge, as new sugar ban plans could lead to British favourites like jelly babies, dib dabs, boiled sweets, and fudge being made illegal. They can try prying Guido’s sherbet lemons from his cold, dead hands.

Ban-happy quango Public Health England have continued their crusade to make life miserable by recommending that no sweet should be allowed to be made of more than 50% sugar. The Institute of Economic Affairs has published a report denouncing PHE for their draconian proposals that are sure to leave a sour taste in people’s mouths.

Josie Appleton, the report’s author, said:

“These new food reformulation plans go way beyond even the existing Orwellian limits. There is a shocking lack of evidence behind them; it seems the main motivation for the changes is a belief the public are too infantile to make informed choices about their own diet so ‘improvements’ must be made for them.”

We don’t know Werther we’ve said it enough, Boris needs to tell PHE to suck it up.

Labour Quietly Drop Climate Change Target

Jeremy Corbyn has quietly downgraded Labour’s ambition to tackle climate change despite today promising a “green industrial revolution.” It’s not just Brexit pledges that they’ve ripped out of their manifesto…

In 2017 Labour committed to achieving 60% of energy -including heating- from “zero-carbon or renewable sources by 2030”, but now they’ve dropped this target to “low carbon sources” in a recent paper from Labour on the renationalisation of the energy networks.

Low carbon and renewable sources already make up 53% of our electricity mix. That share has risen by over 2.5% in the last year alone. On current trends, by 2030 Labour’s new target will be far, far less green than the actual status quo…

FCO “Crisis No Deal Response”: Go On Holiday

Yesterday’s story about the penny dropping at the FCO that Brexit was really going to happen on October 31 triggered the FCO press office into claiming that they had, of course, been training people on trade policy since 2016.  Unfortunately for the junior press office spinner trying to sell the line that this was just an expansion, Guido’s FCO sources suggest otherwise…

It’s all getting a bit hairy over at the FCO, departments are now being told that more and more staff will have to be deployed – unexpectedly – for Brexit related duties. Many unhappy senior staff are having to decide what they will have to stop doing to compensate for redeployed staff and resources…

Simon McDonald, the FCO’s Permanent-Under-Secretary, has written to staff telling them; “Preparing for a no deal response will become the FCO’s main effort… our EU exit work has to intensify across the FCO.” He goes on to tell them that the FCO Crisis Centre will be coordinating the effort – which tells you all need to know about the FCO’s attitude towards Brexit. Peter Jones, the FCO’s Chief Operating Officer, is coordinating the change in priorities with directors. As if it should not have been the priority since June 2016…

McDonald concludes “Preparing for October is the professional challenge of our lives” before going on to finish his missive “I hope, like me, you manage to take some leave over the summer in preparation for a busy autumn.” No sense of urgency even though a no deal Brexit has belatedly “become the FCO’s main effort”…

May Rejected People’s PMQs

This week, Boris launched his ‘People’s PMQs’ allowing him to answer the public’s questions directly, in one of many examples of Downing Street getting on top of its PR and Coms operation since the new administration started. The People’s PMQs always looked like an obvious PR win, proved by the Facebook livestream receiving 230,000 views and overwhelmingly positive feedback. 

Guido hears from Downing Street aides that the ‘People’s PMQs’ idea was pitched to Theresa May months ago only for her to reject the proposal. Guido is hardly surprised to discover the Maybot missed what could have been an open PR goal…

Sarah Wollaston May Not Be Lib Dem Candidate At Next Election

The Liberal Democrat PPC for Sarah Wollaston’s Totnes constituency has made a less than helpful intervention on local radio, claiming no decision has been made over who will stand for the seat in an upcoming general election. Awkward…

Caroline Voaden, the understandably miffed original candidate, is currently a Lib Dem MEP for the South West. She told BBC Radio Devon that “things are very fluid” and “when the election will be… may have some colouring on who stands.”

“We can only have one candidate for Totnes. At some point a decision will be made about whether I fight the seat for Totnes or whether Sarah does, and that is a decision that the party will make, and it has not been made yet.”

Who knows, by that point Wollaston might have defected to yet another different party…

Friday Caption Contest (Families that Eat Together Edition)

The winner of this week’s competition will receive a free copy of this summer’s must have: The Brexit Card Game. Entries in the comments…

Greta’s Titanic Hypocrisy

As Greta Thunberg continues to poo in a bucket across the Atlantic, it has emerged her trip is not nearly as environmental as she first made out. Nobody could have seen this coming… 

The €4 million yacht she’s sailing on is made of carbon fibre – a material with a carbon footprint 14 times higher than that of steel, and that “spews out a significant amount of greenhouse gases” during its manufacturing. It’s always worth reminding Greta that flying only accounts for between 2 and 5% of the world’s carbon emissions… GQ’s ‘game changer of the year’ clearly putting carbon fibre over moral fibre…

UPDATE: It transpires that the five people bringing the boat back from NYC will first fly over to the States, meaning in total Greta’s PR trip will end up creating six times the emissions it would have done if she’d just flown over to begin with…

Sky News ‘Focus Group’ Stuffed Full of Remain Activists

Fresh from sensationally revealing that Conservative Party adverts “were highly partisan”, Sky News Technology Correspondent Rowland Manthorpe has compiled a report on young people and political adverts. Strangely the only two people interviewed in Manthorpe’s ‘focus group’ are political activists for the Second Referendum campaign…

  • Matilda Allan (titled by Sky as “Teenager”) set up an organisation called “New Generation for a People’s Vote”.
[…] Read the rest

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