That will set the hare running among Tory MPs…
Employees at high-end consultancy Teneo Blue Rubicon were surprised to receive an email from CEO Gordon Tempest-Hay kicking up a stink about recent office antics. The boss puts staff on notice to clean up their behaviour after a series of recent drunken incidents. Culminating in someone – “I can’t put this any less bluntly” – doing a poo in the office shower:
Subject: Office etiquette
I’m well aware that what follows only applies to a small percentage of us but as I don’t know exactly who that small % is and, as things are getting out of hand, it’s time for a word. Over the few weeks, we have had:
- Someone get drunk and throw up over the carpet (they’ve apologised, but still)
- Someone – I can’t put this any less bluntly – poo in the shower
- Someone mess their underwear and leave it for the cleaner
- A Friday bar getting completely out of hand akin to a drinking competition for a bunch of clubbing teens
Not only are these things inappropriate for a workplace but it is totally unacceptable to expect our lovely cleaning lady to clear up the resultant mess.
Please treat this place properly or we’ll have to withdraw the showers and stop the bar.
Guido thought he would do some of the dirty work and assist them in identifying some possible culprits. Could it be:
Hopefully that will help them get to the bottom of the matter as quickly as possible…
William Hague coming out for legalising cannabis is a welcome new development, though he isn’t the first former Tory leader to do so. Back in his groovy WebCameron days David Cameron told Guido “If it can be proved that there are real benefits, medicinal benefits and scientific evidence for it, I would be relaxed about that… my decision would be to licence it if it could be proved to have benefits.” Home Secretary Sajid Javid was convinced by the scientific arguments to grant an exception for Billy Caldwell. What are the prospects for the exception becoming the rule?
The international context is important. With many US states decriminalising medical cannabis it is becoming more acceptable at government level. In Europe the experience of more liberal regimes can be shown to have improved rather than worsened matters. Countries are granting licences for medical cannabis more readily – Malta is introducing legislation to enable it to become the EU’s leading medical cannabis exporter. The spirit of the age is for liberalisation.
The normalising of cannabis use beyond dope smoking teenagers is becoming more widespread. Many people now have the personal experience of an auntie or granny who uses weed to deal with their arthritis pains, never mind those with more serious conditions like MS and cancer. This social development has made the perception of cannabis use less negative.
Domestically we now have a generation of politicians who have used and are familiar with the reality of cannabis use and don’t see it in the demonic terms that non-user politicians of the past might have. With the departure of Paul Dacre from the public stage they also no longer fear a monstering from the Daily Mail if they do speak out in favour of a more liberal, rational policy. Think tanks are now pointing to the tax raising potential of legalised cannabis. The stars are aligning for decriminalisation, though judging by the reported rows in cabinet, one Tory leader stands in the way…
William Hague speaking on BBC Radio 5…
“I don’t think calling the election was a mistake. I think the result was a mistake”.
William Hague concedes “it is not on the cards”, but he writes in the Telegraph that the Tories should repeal the Fixed Term Parliament Act and Theresa May should call an early election to bury Labour and strengthen her hand on Brexit. These are the key quotes:
“Were the Fixed-term Parliaments Act not in force, the case for a general election this spring would be very strong indeed. We have a new Prime Minister and Cabinet facing the most complex challenges of modern times: Brexit negotiations, the Trump administration, the threat from Scottish nationalists and many other issues. There is no doubt that they would be in a stronger position to take the country through these challenges successfully if they had a large and decisive majority in the Commons and a new full term ahead of them.
Furthermore, they would have a very good chance of securing such an outcome. An election now would follow the rare experience of a by-election gain for the Government and would catch the Labour Party in its worst condition since the early Thirties, and with its least credible leader ever. But it is difficult to call an election, assuming that Labour turkeys are unlikely to vote for a very early and particularly juicy Christmas…
Could the Fixed-term Parliament Act be repealed? Yes it could, if Conservative MPs were determined and disciplined about doing it. A change introduced to help the Lib Dems in the last parliament does not have to be sacrosanct in this one. There would be much synthetic rage, but the right to go to the country has been enjoyed by Labour and Liberal prime ministers down the ages, from Gladstone to Blair.
A bill to repeal the Act could be introduced this year and be law by late 2018, even if it became necessary to override opposition in the Lords. Then the Prime Minister, who faces formidable obstacles, would have her hand strengthened, particularly if the voters remain on her side.
Such change can only be made with almost unanimous Conservative support. The chances of that would have to be calculated. If asked, I am sure ministers will say that they have no plan to introduce a change. However, quietly and carefully, it is worth thinking about. In 2019, trouble is coming.”
That will set the hare running among Tory MPs…
Leave message: Raab says: massive advantages to controlled migration.
Remain message: Hague says: Leave is a risk to the economy.
Cut through: Voter registration extended until June 9.
Odds: Remain 1/3, Leave 14/5
Latest poll: Remain 43% (+2), Leave 42% (-3) (YouGove, online). Poll of Polls is now Remain 51%, Leave 49%.
This clip from 2008 shows Cameron and Osborne smirking and laughing at the idea of a ‘red card’ for EU legislation, as William Hague mocks such a plan in a withering speech at the despatch box:
“It doesn’t take much of a political analyst to work out that the chances of this mechanism being employed on any regular basis are vanishingly small… You only have to consider this for a moment to begin to laugh about it…”
Eight years later, Dave and George claim unconvincingly that their red card is reason enough to vote to Remain…