Guido Android App

Some 20% of Guido’s readers now come view the blog via mobile phones and tablets. This new app gives a richer experience – with interactivity. The blog feed on the app is light-format, you can click through to the desktop version with all the comments. Twitter is integrated into the app, as is a tip-off via email function if you have any gossip for us. If you are using the app on a phone you can now call and speak with us just by double clicking. If there is big story we will send users a push notification alert of the breaking news straight to your phone…

It works on on iPhone, Android and BlackBerry as well as iPad and Android tablets. How much for all this functionality? The first 5000 downloads of the app will be free. The Android native app can be downloaded here. For all other devices you can download it here

Treasury’s £1 Million Stimulus

Just as the Q3 GDP figures were announced this morning a perfectly-timed FOI response landed in Guido’s inbox. Between January and October this year the Treasury spent almost £1 million of taxpayers’ money renovating their Horse Guards Road offices. The cash was spent on a project to “optimise usable space”, with hundreds of thousands spent on building brand new workstations, receptions and infrastructure and buying new furniture. That’s one way of softening the construction downturn

UPDATE: Treasury sources get in touch to stress that the project will double the occupancy of the building, freeing up space elsewhere and so saving money. Twice as many Treasury officials under one roof, what a thought…

Paranoia Drives Government into the Arms of MacShame

Not content with distributing planted questions, it seems the Government is really scraping the barrel over the Peoples’ Brexit:

When you need a thief to fight your corner, you know you’re on the wrong side…

Misery Index: Happy Days

We are officially the happiest we have ever been since the Coalition came to power. Unemployment has fallen below the crucial 8% mark, inflation has dipped to 2.6% and the Public Sector Net Cash Requirement has plummeted. Best of all today’s better than expected 1% GDP growth sees this month’s misery index fall to an all-time low of 10.68. The Treasury insists complacency will not set in.

Enjoy it while it lasts…

N.B. stats bods can check Guido’s adding up here.

Guidogram Going Out Shortly

The Guidogram round-up of the week is going out shortly.

Thousands of Westminster insiders read the Guidogram, everyone from Downing Street insiders to Fleet Street never miss it. It’s an early one this week as Ed Balls has the mother of all car crash interviews. Also don’t miss out on Guido’s rent-swapping series.

Join the conspiracy and become a subscriber to the Guidogram, free, to keep in the loop. You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

Now Boulton Joins in Balls Deficit Bashing

The Shadow Chancellor is not having a very good day.

Read the full email from the BBC spinners trying to gag the Tory Chairman before an appearance on Question Time.

…over on Media Guido.

Full BBC Savile Cover-Up Email to Grant Shapps

The entire “gag” email sent to Grant Shapps by the BBC spin team two weeks ago has been leaked:

The incorrect “editorial reasons line” was still being pushed then.

Via Mail Online

Blinking Balls Battered & Bruised By Brillo Over Deficit Denial

Last week Guido flagged up the IMF pouring cold water over Balls telling Andrew Marr in January 2011 that there was no structural deficit pre-crash:

“The IMF declared today that Britain’s structural deficit was £38bn worse than originally thought and running at £73bn or 5.2% in 2007 – a year before that ‘global economic crisis’ Ed Balls hides behind. Here is what he told Marr in January 2011:“I don’t think we had a structural deficit at all in that period [before the recession]” Given the Shadow Chancellor’s fondness for throwing IMF statements around, will he now concede that he was wrong and say sorry?”

No, instead he chose to deny ever saying it. You be the judge…

BARKING: Elphicke’s Star Wins Westminster Dog of the Year

Charlie Elphicke’s four year old Norfolk Terrier, and very good boy, Star has collared the prize of this year’s Westminster Dog of the Year.

Runners up were  David Burrowes and Lindsay Hoyle.

Lets all paws for a round of applause.

UPDATE: Star will be on the Daily Politics.

Talking Balls

It was less than fifteen minutes after the GDP news was announced before Balls’ people started calling for more borrowing and spending on the back of the news:

Two hours later they have has managed to scramble together a line:

“A one-off boost from the Olympics is welcome. But it is no substitute for a plan to secure and sustain the strong recovery that Britain desperately needs if we are to create jobs, get the deficit down and make people better off.”

Balls chooses to simply ignore the ONS stating that it only 0.2 of the 1% change was down to the Olympics.

Funny how abnormalities are only considered when the growth is positive.

Tory Select Committee Election Full Results

This was all confirmed last night, but Guido was on the razz:

The following candidates in today’s Select Committee Elections were elected:

Business, Innovation and Skills Committee
Caroline Dinenage
Robin Walker

Culture Media and Sport Committee
Angie Bray
Conor Burns
Tracey Crouch

Defence Committee
Adam Holloway

Energy and Climate Change Committee
Peter Lilley

Environment Food and Rural Affairs Committee
Sheryll Murray

International Development Committee
Fiona Bruce
Mark Pritchard

Procedure Committee
Martin Vickers

Transport Committee
Karen Lumley
Karl McCartney

Treasury Select Committee
Brooks Newmark

1922 elections
Robert Buckland was elected as Joint-Secretary and Simon Hart and Karl McCartney were elected to the Executive.

+++ GDP UP 1% +++ Above Expectations, GDP Flat Year-on-Year

Red IDS and the £500,000 NHS Yacht

Whenever yachts and Tories are mentioned in the same sentence the alarm bells should start ringing in CCHQ. For some inexplicable reason IDS has taken it upon himself to praise an NHS trust for spending half a million pounds of public money on a 72ft ocean racing yacht. The yacht has been used as part of a scheme to help the unemployed, and IDS is all for it:

“I love coming to projects like this, people have great ideas and we need to replicate them. If they are getting people ready for work, however it’s being done, even by buying a yacht, then let a thousand flowers bloom. Sometimes the national press says something is a bad idea and everybody agrees, but I would invite David Cameron to come up here.”

Somehow Guido doubts he’ll accept the invite. Back in 2009 Dave attacked the decision to spend taxpayers’ money on the yacht:

“Recently the NHS brought a yacht and moored it in a Hull marina. This was a completely crazy decision…If this extravagance had been published for all to see, the people who made this decision would either have had to justify it or scrap it”.

Oh, and that “thousand flowers bloom” reference is a quote from Mao. How things change…

BBC Call In Firefight Lawyers

The BBC have promised on several occasions that the two inquiries being held into the Jimmy Savile allegations will be comprehensive and independent. The role of gathering evidence for these two inquiries has been delegated to the international law firm Reed Smith, who will provide legal advice to the inquiry chairs and support them in reaching their conclusions. But Reed Smith are hardly the most objective of choices.

Reed Smith has previously defended the BBC in litigation cases on numerous occasions, indeed judging by their website they appear to consider the Beeb one of their major media clients. No less than six of their current lawyers have worked for the BBC in the past. Most interestingly of all, this year Reed Smith hosted a series of conferences entitled “Protecting the Media”.

Is it really appropriate for the law firm tasked with gathering evidence against the BBC to have such a flagrant vested interest? Why has the BBC appointed a company with experience in firefighting for the media to investigate the allegations made against it? Hardly allaying suspicions…



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Quote of the Day

Alan Sugar on Jeremy Corbyn:

“It’s clear you alluded to students refunds to get votes from young impressionable people. You are a cheat and should resign.”

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