+++ Nigel Griffiths Loses Screws Injunction Fight +++

Get the News of the Screws tomorrow – a High Court judge has today backed the  paper after it revealed Nigel Griffiths MP had sex in the House of Commons. Griffiths tried to gag the newspaper from publishing further details about his drunken sexual frolics. Given the outrageous situation with creeping Judge-made privacy precedents,  today’s was an important decision, Mr Justice King agreed the Screws should be free to expose Griffith’s frolics. He also added, that the Griffiths was ‘economical with the truth’.

“The paper should be free to put the record straight as to what the Claimant said in response to the article. I accept there is a legitimate interest of the public in the way MPs use access to offices that they get as a result of their public office. There is a right to prevent the public from being significantly mislead. At the very least, he was being economical with the truth.”

To be clear, Griffiths lied publicly and also issued an extremely misleading statement.  That the Parliamentary Commissioner has also failed to investigate means that as far as parliament is concerned, “Honourable” Members can film drunken porno sessions in the Mother of Parliaments without any sanction.

Sunday Sleaze should be fun tomorrow…

Purnell : We Can't End Boom and Bust

Smiling James PurnellJames Purnell won’t thank Guido for wishing this out loud, but when the civil war starts in the Labour Party after the general election, may Purnell be on the winning side.  If he wins a not forgotten Thatcherite aspiration will be realised – we will no longer have a socialist opposition party.

He gave a speech in Chile yesterday setting out how he thinks capitalism should be saved, how it can be more egalitarian and predicting that the next decade will be capitalist.  He also wants less power for the state and politicians –  which all sounds very much like a Thatcherite agenda for popular capitalism.

The coded bit of the speech that struck Guido was this:

People are worried about the extraordinary instability that was bubbling below the long boom of the last two decades.  We can’t promise to end instability.

Who presided over that bubble? Who promised to end the instability of boom and bust? Do you think Gordon Brown will be happy with the speech?

Political Class Starting to Fear the Public's Anger

Not often that Polly Toynbee, Tim Montgomerie and Guido agree: popular anger with the political class is rising.  Something that Polly wants Labour to adjust to by moving policy to the left as well as limiting public-sector fat-cat pay. Tim Montgomerie agrees on the latter but wants the Tories to wake up to popular anger by putting on hair-shirts and getting their own snoughts out of the trough.  Guido welcomes both pundits to the anti-politics banner.

Democracy is broken, the political media elite distant from the people with the two main parties offering no choice and no change.  Osborne is promising no change and blaming the economic crisis.  Taxation will remain penal, spending will remain prolific, there will be some reforms of a failed state bureaucracy but no rollback and no radicalism.  Hannan is at least making the case for a radical shift of power from the centralised state bureaucracy to people at local level.

The Cameroons can’t seal the deal with the people with pragmatism,  “Triangulation Now!” is not the banner that will get people marching.  Voters are angry with Brown and disenchanted with politicians offering more of the same.  Bedazzled during the Blair years, Cameron, Osborne and Hilton have yet to show that they realise the times have fundamentally changed.  Taking strategic advice from the wrong Danny* has left the Tories outflanked on their USP – the LibDems are now the only party promising to reduce the tax burden on the low paid.  Hannan told Newsnight last night that people are fed up of being, “ripped off, lied to and ignored” by politicians.  Disenchantment with politicians has never been higher, most think they are overpaid and dishonest.  Hannan gets it.  This crisis is an opportunity to radically change the plan.

*Finkelstein.  Nice guy, but wrong.  Danny has been consistently one political zeitgeist behind the times all his life.

Cameron Hails Hannan's "Brilliant Response"

In an email tonight to Conservative Party supporters Dave hails

Dan Hannan’s brilliant response to Gordon Brown in the European Parliament. It was so effective and shows the growing power of the internet over TV.

Meanwhile Sir Michael White is getting a lashing from his own readers on the Guardian website for, well, just not getting it.  Douglas Carswell MP is taking the opportunity on his blog to remind Sir Michael that he recently mocked Carswell for saying YouTube was  going to be politically important.  On the other hand Guido has to give full credit to John Prescott, who clearly does get it:

I must say I find the internet sensation caused by Dan Hannan’s speech to the European Parliament remarkable. Normally, an obscure Eurosceptic Tory MEP would not get any coverage for a rant against the Prime Minister in the mainstream media. And it proved to be the case. None of the networks or the newspapers originally covered it. But once he uploaded it onto YouTube it took off. Firstly it got up to 30,000 hits after being promoted by Guido Fawkes on his website. Then it exploded in the US once it was put on the Drudge Report site. The mainstream media were then forced to cover it and it has now been seen by more than a million people. I think this is a perfect example of the power shift away from the mainstream media to the internet. Instead of having to get past the editorial filter of journalists and editors, people are starting to set the news agenda and the hacks are having to catch up.

All the left-wing think-tanks and pressure groups have been having seminars and meetings on how to harness the internet “after Obama”.  Maybe they should have looked to Ron Paul instead, he had a clear libertarian political message that he articulated via the internet.  The internet insurgency shook up the Republican party during the U.S. primaries when Ron Paul, then a little known anti-War Republican running for President, shocked the U.S. political establishment by raising over $4 million online – in one day It was not for nothing that his campaign song was “Google Ron Paul”.

Hannan’s first choice for U.S. president was the libertarian Republican, not really surprising considering Hannan and Carswell are two of the most libertarian leaning Conservative politicians.  If you read their book The Plan“, you will see they both get the internet and the effect it will have on politics.  Right now some 1 1/4 million people have “Googled Dan Hannan”…



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Quote of the Day

The FT’s Wolfgang Munchau on the “fake maths” of economic forecasts:

“The truth is that our ability to forecast the future beyond the current quarter is limited… The curse of our time is fake maths. Think of it as fake news for numerically literate intellectuals: it is the abuse of statistics and economic models to peddle one’s own political prejudice… The fakeness of the maths lies in an exaggerated inference. Economic models have their uses, as do opinion polls. They provide information to policymakers and markets. But nobody can see through the fog of the future.”

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