With the government today endorsing Tim Yeo’s Thick of It-style playgrounds for wind farms policy, an old but nonetheless increasingly apt quote from the Energy and Climate change select committee chair has been doing the rounds:
“What we have to do is work harder to find places where wind farms are acceptable but also, secondly, as this is what we’re not yet doing, be more creative about sharing some of the benefits directly with those local communities. Frankly, we need to be prepared to bribe them.”
Guido doubts Yeo would still be so open about his creative methods after recent events…
Jacqui Smith will upset the left with her latest Progress column:
“the success of the academy programme and the transformation of schools which it achieved is one that Labour members should be proud to claim as their own.”
The stop Boris campaign is gearing up. Following on from John Major’s intervention this week, Grant Shapps has slammed this summer’s Boris Mania. The Tory chairman dismisses the London Mayor’s credentials to make it to No.10. Shapps sniped that Boris didn’t have the “right set of skills” to become PM, and when asked the question directly replied with a firm: “No”. Bojo has now hit back:
All on the day that Shapps was reported to the police in a classic Labour kite that, without a “victim” of these alleged copyright breaches or plagiarism coming forward, will go nowhere. Presumably Michael Green has all the qualities required to run the country though…
Tough times call for desperate measures, and so our MPs are finding out as EasyJet announces a new low-cost travel deal for parliamentarians. In an drive to save taxpayers’ money MPs will now be asked to fly with EasyJet when they leave the country rather than claim for a pricier airline on expenses. According to their website:
“The deal will deliver low cost, flexible fares to MPs as well as providing support for MPs’ constituency and Commons Select Committee’s travel arrangements and will be open for all MPs, Peers and Houses of Parliament staff. We know that many MPs, Peers and Government ministers already fly with easyJet. This deal will make it easier and more cost effective than ever before. We are sure they will vote with their feet and travel with EasyJet across Europe.”
During last year’s riots the company flew more than 80 MPs back to Britain at no cost to the taxpayer. That figure didn’t include Ibiza holiday home-owning Chuka Umunna, who claimed more than £300 on expenses for his contingency travel back to Brixton. Next time Chuka will have to fly with the riff raff…
Yet another Tory sacked at the reshuffle has had the blow softened with a fancy title and financial reward. James Duddridge, until recently a whip, will be the next Chair of the Regulatory Reform Committee. The tedium of the role is compensated with a nice £14,582 salary top up.
It used to be that when you got sacked you got nothing in return.
It seems that rule only applies to women now.
Media Guido understands that Romilly Weeks, who currently covers Westminster for ITV News, is set to become their full time Political Correspondent. The Telegraph’s Home Affairs Editor Martin Beckford is joining the Mail on Sundayin the same role.
Who else is on the move? Email Media Guido.
Find out who is in the running, as well as our Monday Media Movements.
Only over at Media Guido…
UKIP are kicking off conference season this week, and have announced they will be re-branding and dropping the pound sign from their logo – apparently that battle has been won. Tim Montgomerie has been bandying about ideas for a new design. According to the Telegraph the party have drafted a “friendly design consultancy is helping the party”. Guido’s done their work for them:
Obviously the old freedom torch introduced by Margaret Thatcher in 1987 has an obvious appeal, though UKIP have to be careful not to put off the 20-25% of supporters who are previous Labour voters. Guido’s personal politically correct gender-balanced suggestion would be Boadicea – the historic heroine of those fighting occupying forces from Europe. Or why not a swan?
If you had picked up your Daily Star Sunday yesterday you would be in the know about talk of another reshuffle next year, the Sage of Twickenham downgrading his predictions and the failure of parliamentary reform.
Last Sunday we suggested the reshuffling of LibDems out of the Ministry of Defence and Foreign Office could presage military action in Iran. Today, a week later, the Mail on Sunday catches up and says the same. Keep up!
Guido’s favourite story this week was how the Tories are blatantly fundraising on the back of the Olympic Games:
At a £1,000-a-head fundraising dinner on Thursday, an Olympic torch “signed by Seb Coe, David Cameron and will be signed by Boris” was auctioned for over £30,000. No wonder the Prime Minister called them “the Golden Games”.
Yesterday’s column is now online here