Who Pooed in the Shower?

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.

G

Guido thought he would do some of the dirty work and assist them in identifying some possible culprits. Could it be:

  • Sir Craig Oliver, former Direct of Communications to David Cameron, now a Principal at Teneo. Did have a big week celebrating his 50th birthday…
  • Lord Hague of Richmond, former Tory leader and Foreign Secretary, now a Senior Advisor to Teneo. Soiled his Eurosceptic credentials in the referendum…
  • Sir Martin Donnelly, former Permanent Secretary at BIS and the Department for International Trade, also now a Senior Advisor to Teneo. Has dropped a few stinkers recently…

Hopefully that will help them get to the bottom of the matter as quickly as possible…

Political Prospects for Pot

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…

Election Mistake

William Hague speaking on BBC Radio 5…

“I don’t think calling the election was a mistake. I think the result was a mistake”.

Hague Calls For Early Election

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…

Campaign Report: 15 Days to Go

Hancock

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.

Leave social media count: 464,699 likes, 54,049 followers.

Remain social media count: 461,798 likes, 35,398 followers.

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%.

When Cameron and Osborne Laughed at a ‘Red Card’

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…

Hague Rubbishes Cameron’s Red Card

EU REFORM

David Cameron’s ‘red card‘ means EU legislation can be vetoed if 55% of Member States agree. Good luck with that.

The idea that Britain could simply oppose individual pieces of draft EU legislation, and easily and straightforwardly convince 14 other Member States to vote with us to kill it, is amusingly optimistic. As William Hague said in 2008:

“Given the difficulty of Oppositions winning a vote in their Parliaments, the odds against doing so in 14 countries around Europe with different parliamentary recesses… are such that even if the European Commission proposed the slaughter of the first-born it would be difficult to achieve such a remarkable conjunction of parliamentary votes”

And Hague is campaigning to Remain…

Hague on Extraordinary Corbyn

William Hague on Leading the Opposition…

“The Leader of the Opposition has to look as if he can work with President Obama and stand up to President Putin, or, in this particular and extraordinary case, vice versa.”

Hague on ‘Blair’s Law’

William Hague on Tony Blair…

“To the political law that you can’t fool all of the people all of the time he added Blair’s law – that you can make a very serious attempt at it.”

Young, Bald Leadership Contender Unveils New Blonde Girlfriend

Where have we seen this before?

hague-fion

But is Chuka ready? Like Hague, is he going for it too early? 5 years as opposition leader is a very long time…

As Guido reports in the Sun today, Umunna has plenty of options available, with some allies urging him to run for Mayor of London rather than leader. From City Hall he can build a power-base, gain executive experience and sweep back as leader after the referendum. Or will his vanity and ambition for the top job blind him to the long game?

Bercow’s Death Stare to Government Benches

How can a man with such obvious contempt for one side of the House remain impartial?

Demob Happy Hague Blunders War Tribute

You would have hoped that any Cabinet minister, let alone the best selling historian William Hague, might have remembered that VE Day is in May…

Via Ned

UPDATE:

UPDATE II:

Got there in the end!

Legacy Hague: I’ve Solved the West Lothian Question, Sorta

William Hague sensationally claimed to have finally solved the West Lothian question in a snoozefest speech in Westminster this morning. He inserted a hefty caveat, however…

The Tory plan that would be put to Parliament in the case of a majority is apparently a “non-symmetrical” solution. In other words it is unbalanced. In other words it is a not a solution to the age old riddle.

Guido pointed out afterwards that Hague’s old flatmate and colleague Sir Alan Duncan claims that the Tories do not understand vast parts of the UK including Scotland, and given that they are on the brink of a fourth consecutive wipeout north of the border, didn’t he have a point? Hague responded saying the Tories were “aiming” for significantly more than their current single seat in Scotland. He did not say, however, that he believed they would achieve that ambitious goal. Which all but proves Dunky’s point…

What the Helic? SpAd Bill Soars to £8.4 Million + + + No. 10 Stuffed with 27 Special Advisers to the PM + + +

£8.4 million of taxpayer cash was spent on 103 SpAds in the last year, a 17% rise on the year before.

Chasing headlines in 2010, Cameron made a big deal of cutting the number of SpAds from 82 to 61. He now personally has 27. Twenty-f**king-seven spin doctors, bag carriers and wonky strategists. No. 10 now has almost half the number of SpAds as served the entire government just five years ago.

Nick Clegg now has twenty special advisers. Nearly double the amount that Jesus got by with.

Why does Esther McVey need a Special Adviser beyond a reshuffle consolation prize, and why is she paid more than dozens of others on the list who report to real cabinet ministers?

Why does the Chief Whip have three advisers at a cost of around £150,000? What are they doing – because there’s no real legislation going through the House?

And finally, Guido cannot fathom why, in his new role as Leader of the House, William Hague still needs three SpAds costing us almost £200,000. Bizarrely Arminka Helic is retained as his adviser on £70,000-a-year, despite recently being ennobled and therefore allowed to claim a £300-a-day allowance in the House of Lords.

What a bloody racket.

UPDATE: Hard to disagree with Angela Eagle:

“Another day, another broken promise from David Cameron and Nick Clegg.

“David Cameron promised to get the cost of politics down but under him the number of Special Advisers spirals ever upwards – the public are now picking up bill of over £8m to pay for his appointees.

“This also shows how you can’t trust a word Nick Clegg says. The Lib Dems used to say that Special Advisers shouldn’t be paid for by the public but as soon as he got his feet under the Cabinet table he broke his word. The cost to the public of Lib Dem Special Advisers is over £1.7million – Nick Clegg alone has more advisers working for him than he has female MPs.”

UPDATE II:

SKETCH: Hague Statement on Iraq, Iran

The Commons decided not to spend the Iraq statement flaying and nailing Tony Blair’s body to the floor of the House (an error, in this observer’s view).

However, Angus Robertson asked whether the Global Maniac should resign his position as Peace Envoy to the Middle East. Tobias Ellwood pointed out that before Blair, there was no Al Qaida in Iraq, and that he created “a vacuum of governance”. Jeremy Corbyn referred to his destruction of that country’s civil institutions. And a number of others expressed relief the Government wasn’t going to send the army in to effect a reconciliation between the sects, factions, death cults and End Times idiots that comprise the Middle Eastern polity.

Gently-spoken, mild-mannered Alistair Burt said governments over there didn’t appreciate what they were facing, and needed to “kill off the ideology and the people who are propagating it”. What, all of them? In the name of diversity, plurality and inclusive democracy?

The only forces that might actually overthrow the medievalists are theologians and feminists. As the latter have more guts than the former let’s send them in first.

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Dame! William Hague, Foreign Sec Honours Actress

Willy kneel?

Hague: “I Am No Longer in the Closet”

The Foreign Secretary’s photo op with Brangelina while the Iranian Revolutionary Guard is deployed in Iraq earns him a bashing on the front page of the Mail this morning. Speaking to Woman’s Hour this week, Hague defended spending time campaigning with Hollywood A-listers:

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Jenni Murray: “You’re no longer in the closet?”

William Hague: “I am no longer in the closet.”

That explains it: he is a closet feminist…

Israel Slams Geneva Deal in Hague's Face

Tough gig for William Hague at the annual Conservative Friends of Israel lunch. Despite knowing Hague at Oxford thirty years ago, Israeli ambassador Daniel Taub slapped down the ‘friend of Israel’ over the deal with Iran. Mocking Cameron for pledging he would stand up for Israel at the same event last year, Taub warned “our good faith is being tested… If you want Israel to be tested then we want to know that the international community will be there for us. We need to hear the international community’s concern”. He stressed Israel are open to a deal, but not this deal, as it “does not require Iran to diffuse a single centrifuge… Iran with a bomb, or bombing Iran? The best alternative is a deal.” Taub concluded:

“The closer you are to Iran, the more clearly you hear the voice of the Iranians leader who called Israel a rabid dog fit for destruction.”

Hague humiliated in front of 500 supporters of Israel. The timing could hardly have been more awkward…

UPDATE:

Other than light applause when he stood up Hague was heard in obvious silence. Trying to placate a cold crowd, he insisted he knew why Israeli leaders have concerns, but that he was clear from the start it had to be a deal that was detailed and thorough, emphasiaing that these are the first important steps that shows the policy of pressure and diplomacy does work. Summing up by stressing that there is no quick fix. Nothing new and nothing to address Israel’s concerns. He sounded like a Cathy Ashton mouthpiece…

WATCH: Hague’s Highlights

James Wharton gave an assured performance on his big day, though it was William Hague who delivered the killer blows:

 Poor wee Dougie.

Friday Caption Contest (International Women's Day Edition)

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Boris as Hulk…

‘Banner might be bound in manacles, but when provoked he would explode out of them. Hulk always escaped, no matter how tightly bound in he seemed to be – and that is the case for this country. We will come out on October 31 and we will get it done.’

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