“Well, we have been working on it. Let me put it this way if I’d had to write the script for the opening day then I certainly wouldn’t have written it the way it turned out.”
So for a few minutes the situation was tense (although Nick Robinson was laughing with George Pascoe-Watson from The Sun in the front row at the dilemma). Eventually an African LibDem intervened so no white-on-black pictures would appear.
No surprises, Ming and Huhne were about equal on the clap-o-meter, maybe Ming had the edge with his better sense of humour. Hughes was all earnest and vicar-like, he rambled but the audience was not his, Huhne didn’t inspire but he was competent.
Funniest question from the floor was from someone who looked like a Tory in a yellow tie asking “when would they withdraw from the EU – AS THE PEOPLE WANT?”
Guido was handed a leaflet by a Green beardie-weirdie type which was going to go straight in the bin, except it does have an interesting allegation about carbon-neutral Huhne. He apparently owns substantial shareholdings in two gold mining companies. Gold which has to be smelted, a process which is responsible for 13% of global carbon emmissions. To be honest, Huhne’s conversion from BMW driving city tycoon to Green, electric-car-driving political visionary, does strike Guido as politically convenient.
Obviously somebody in Victoria Street reads Guido and has a sense of humour. Key in Chris Huhne and look what you get:
Please no more Google Ads. Please.
UPDATE : Cameron’s advert has gone, possibly something to do with an organised ker-ching click-fest by LibDems.
UPDATE : A co-conspirator tells Guido that Google Ads keywords per click for Huhne cost 2p, for Ming 3p and Hughes 6p. Something to do with the Torygraph.
Search for Chris Huhne and you find Ming above him! They will have had to pay more than the Huhney Monster for the privilege.
Ming bidding here…
UPDATE : Mingers seem determined to boost Google’s profits. Guess what you get when you search for “David Cameron“?
Q. What’s the connection between Simon Hughes and his Nokia phone?
A. Dem iz both Finnish, innit.
Hughes is being offered at 30/1 for those who like outside bets. Ming has tumbled to 2/1. Guido understands that Ming almost literally tumbled over at the Midlands hustings. He lost his footing on stage and very narrowly avoided going arse over tit. It would have been a defining “Kinnock moment”.
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Huhne must be ahead of Ming (forget Hughes, he is finished) why else is he under such bitter attack by rivals? Apart from the fact that unlike Clegg et al he had the chutzpah and balls to run, fortune favours the brave they fear…
(Gratuitous irrelevant pictorial comparison of Huhne and Mr Bean suggested by Mrs Fawkes.)
The Treasury fielded the financial secretary, John Healey, to bat against it when it was launched. Healey sees himself as an attack dog, but is really more of an attack puppy. He tried the New Labour tactic of rubbishing it (without reading it). Healy described it as shoddy and not worthy of serious consideration. So why field a Treasury minister to rubbish it?
Something tells Guido that Matthew Elliott is getting under the skin of the Treasury. The polite, mild mannered CEO of the Taxpayers’ Alliance is deceptive, beneath the Clark Kent exterior is a superman of a campaigner. The former aide to David Davis is building a relatively broad anti-tax alliance which will make a strong case to a future Conservative government for the proceeds of growth to be shared with taxpayers. It is strategically advantageous for the Tories that there is a non-party grassroots lobby for lower taxes besides the business lobby. Gordon’s penchant for tax and waste is a rich vein of opportunity for the Tories. If they themselves are not willing to make the case, than the quietly combative Elliott will have to lead the charge.
It is reportedly manic panic at the Ministry of Sound as Hughes’ credibility collapses, his attempt to bitch-slap Huhne yesterday showed his nasty side (remember Bermondsey 1983) and will make life difficult for him in the future if the Huhney Monsters take control. Tonight on Question Time expect a desperate core votes strategy from Hughes, he will play to LibDem beardie-weirdieness issues. But appeals to the core may not be enough, as Basher Davis found out.
Guido had to madly reverse all his Ming bets this morning, but the losses will be worth it. Team Ming are an alliance of treachery and careerism, seeing them lose will be a joy. Hughes is a dishonest operator who would consign the LibDems to electoral disaster. Electing Huhne will be a positive signal that it is time for the new political generation. The three main British parties accepting free markets will be Thatcher’s final victory, even as her own party disowns her.
Huhne taking over the LibDems would be the worst result for Gordon Brown, it will make him seem older and more to the left of the centre than he would if Hughes was leader. His friend Ming would have been a more agreeable ally in a coalition government. What fun!
The Primrose Hill Blairites of Progress have launched their first pamphlet attack on Cameron’s Notting Hill gang. Guido can save you the bother of reading it, the Tory Clause IV moment is, they say, ‘Accept the Blair legacy’, like they accepted the Thatcherite legacy. So is that, “we’re all Thatcherites now”? Or “we’re all Blairites now”? Or just, “we’re all the same”?
“government bonds are not backed by tangible wealth, only by the government’s promise to pay out of future tax revenues, and cannot easily be absorbed by the financial markets. A large volume of new government bonds can be sold to the public only at progressively higher interest rates… The abandonment of the gold standard made it possible for the welfare statists to use the banking system as a means to an unlimited expansion of credit… The holder of a government bond or of a bank deposit created by paper reserves believes that he has a valid claim on a real asset. But the fact is that there are now more claims outstanding than real assets. The law of supply and demand is not to be conned. As the supply of money (of claims) increases relative to the supply of tangible assets in the economy, prices must eventually rise. Thus the earnings saved by the productive members of the society lose value in terms of goods. When the economy’s books are finally balanced, one finds that this loss in value represents the goods purchased by the government for welfare or other purposes with the money proceeds of the government bonds financed by bank credit expansion… The financial policy of the welfare state requires that there be no way for the owners of wealth to protect themselves… This is the shabby secret of the welfare statists’ tirades against gold. Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the confiscation of wealth. Gold stands in the way of this insidious process. It stands as a protector of property rights. If one grasps this, one has no difficulty in understanding the statists’ antagonism toward the gold standard.”
He is also a disciple of Ayn Rand, the philosopher who is viewed by some as the most radical defender of capitalism of all time. She was certainly uncompromising, viewing collectivism in all its forms as “evil”. So what advice will he be giving to “democratic socialist” Gordon Brown?
Perhaps he will recommend reading a couple of her books like “The Virtue of Selfishness“ and “Capitalism : The Unknown Ideal“. After all, Greenspan wrote three chapters of the latter book. Guido fears Brown will not heed the good advice within…
… his campaign has now secured the backing of eight Council Leaders from around England. This is more than the other candidates combined. ‘I’m delighted,‘ said Chris, ‘at the backing of these local party leaders. These Liberal Democrat council leaders are already in power in their own areas and therefore their support represents a significant step forward in my campaign. I want to see the success they have achieved for the Liberal Democrats replicated on a national scale.’
LibDems will try to paint him out as a nobody, they have already Stalinistically erased his biography and picture from their website.[…] Read the rest