“One British-based businessman with foreign connections came right out and asked how much the going rate was for a peerage. He was willing to pay several million pounds for the privilege, Drucker believes.”
This is of course all in the past since the Industrial Research Trust is no more. Today Gordon has another vehicle for the financing of his ambitions – the Smith Institute. This charity effectively constitutes Gordon’s secretariat. It hosts events at Number 11, graced by Gordon, where he glad hands supporters and as a result ever increasing funds have been raised.
Access to Gordon can be had by donors via the Smith Institute. It is always around when Gordon needs a favour done. Hosting an event for Bill Clinton – get the Smith Institute to give him a platform to share with Gordon. Ed Balls is feeling a bit skint after standing down as Gordon’s SpAd before being parachuted into Normanton – get the Smith Institute to give him a well-paid sinecure. Fancy a bit of back slapping with Gore? Gordon gets the Smith Institute to arrange a screening of his new movie. Gordon doesn’t trust the Labour party’s internal polling – so get the Smith Institute to put Bob Shrum, the U.S. pollster on its payroll as “a senior research fellow”. A highly paid pollster as a fellow – now why ever would a charitable think tank need one of those?
Even though Wilf Stevenson, the Institute’s director, is happy to facilitate Gordon’s whims, the Smith Institute are very evasive about their Brownite links, Guido asked them how many events they had held at No. 11, they came over with amnesia; “Smith Institute events are private high-level guests only events.” Guido explained that, for research purposes only, he had attended one of their high level events. (Security isn’t so tight as they think). The Smith Institute did not deny that the number of events hosted at No. 11 by Gordon was in double figures. No other charity is so privileged, isn’t this bordering on abuse of office?
The question for Yates of the Yard is, isn’t Gordon repeating his old trick? Whereas he once used the Industrial Research Trust to further his ambitions, he now uses the Smith Institute to do the same. All the time claiming that he is “Mr Clean” in comparison to Tony’s sleazy money grubbing ways. “Blind trust” or “educational charity”, the cash was always for the greater glorification of Gordon. Guido reckons Yates should follow the money: who gave what and when? What did they get in return? Yates will find it was more than just canapes on offer at No. 11…
Labour sources have gone from believing “it will all blow over” to an unspoken group-think that they would spin their way out of it, to now hoping they can quash the CPS. There is a realisation that this is now the last chance to stop charges.
You can’t spin a detective easily, every criminal claims he is innocent, but coppers, unlike some of our finest political journalists, work on the assumption that their interviewee is a lying wrong ‘un.
The CPS is Downing Street’s last hope. Nigel Griffith’s bit of wishful thinking spoken aloud on air was the premature hope of the guilty party. To the frustration of the attorney general, the police have not given the CPS much of substance yet because they don’t trust the political independence of the CPS. They will give the CPS the full goods only when the investigation is complete and they are sure that they “will be taking the case to the Old Bailey“. Be assured that is the intention of the police.
Don’t pay any attention to the spin from New Labour – they are shitting themselves. “The Fix” is falling apart. Inside the CPS they are not happy at it being taken for granted that they will be a patsy for Downing Street.
Look at the arse-covering manoeuvres going on in certain quarters – a sure sign that those in the know, know “The Fix” is not in. Sir Ian Blair, our most politicised policeman has taken himself out of the decision making – citing his relationship with the PM. Ken MacDonald, the Director of Public Prosecutions, has done the same. The CPS has turned outside its own ranks to David Perry QC to advise. That leaves only the attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, batting for Blair. It is up to the political classes to see to it that he is prevented from quashing charges or just plain interfering. This discredited lawyer (his flip-flop advice over the legal basis for Iraq was made at Blair’s bidding) should not be permitted to block the course of justice. Shadow Home Secretary David Davis and the Shadow Attorney General Dominic Grieve have Goldsmith in their sights.
Downing Street is not going to be allowed to whitewash this…
No. I have got Bindmans on to the mockers. Iain Dale (filthy homophobe) he got a letter. He took it down. Ros Taylor at the Guardian, they got a letter and they have taken it down. No, no, no. Who is mocking now? Frightened of me all of them. Nobody is going to write spoof diaries about me and get away with it. I am Chris Bryant.
An easy mistake to make because Chris Bryant is beyond satire. Bryant threatened to sue Iain and demanded that his legal bills were paid for sending him a characteristically pompous threatening letter. Iain told him not to be silly and get lost – it was an innocent mistake. Bryant is now sulking.
He’s been none too popular, and this has affected even the family relations and been embarrassing for them. Watson’s sister-in-law Joanna Watson works in the same building (just next door to his office) for West Midlands Labour MEP ultra loyalist and NEC member Michael Cashman, and Watson’s younger brother Dan works part time for neighbouring MP and Social Exclusion Minister Pat Mcfadden, another ultra-loyalist and ex-Number 10 spin doctor. Watson has angered a good many people in his region, and it hasn’t further helped good relations that he was overheard telling senior party officials in his constituency recently that he expects “to be back in government” after Gordon takes over in the summer. Which is a shame because his blog has improved greatly since he has had more time on his hands.
Gordon wouldn’t reward the treachery that he has publicly disavowed advance knowledge of and claimed he would have advised against. Would he?
Still it will give him even more time to webmong about the place surfing political websites, like he did yesterday, when he amazingly discovered the advance publication of the Tory Tax Commission’s report. He’ll be posting on this blog next, like Dave Miliband does, maybe he does already?
As reported here yesterday, it is official today:
“Madeleine Bunting has decided to resign as Director of Demos. Since it has emerged that her vision for Demos is incompatible with that of the trustees.”
A star is born – Jayne Godley.
And this is how he should have done it, funkier and not so twatty.
The voice-over is so good, you have to wonder – did Blair do it himself?