Peter Ainsworth Spotted
Who he? you may ask. He is the tory who leads on DEFRA or as they are calling it now the hug a husky department. So you saw him in parliament or making some speech? No it was not long after PMQ's as I was walking from Birkbeck to Victoria. Hell I need the exercise and I was about to cross the road next to the national portrait gallery entering Trafalgar Square from a north easterly direction when I my eye chanced upon a furtive looking figure.
I would recognise the hair anywhere, you can check it out here, so the coat collar up around his neck was not much of a disguise. He was heading in the opposite direction to me into the west end. Perhaps it was all innocent but I just got this vibe that he was up to something. Then again he is a tory so he would generally be up to something as a rule.
Anyway electors of East Surrey your MP was AWOL from parliament on wednesday lunchtime when he should have been working in the palace of westminster. Didn't see any Labour MP's AWOL on my travels so best kick him out at the next election if you want an MP to actually do something useful rather than swan about the west end of London.
¶ 11:13 pm4 comments
If the Trident replacement is going to work in deterring the not exactly massive threat of nuclear destruction then why should we fork out again for national missile defence and if national missile defence actually worked properly then why would we need to replace Trident?
Will the real Nargis Khan please stand up
You were all thinking that this was the real Nargis Khan website but what about this. Has Nargis been keeping her showbiz talent hidden under a bushel or is showbiz Nargis an imposter?
¶ 2:32 am9 comments
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
The Guido Fawkes blog is supposed to be one of the best. A pathbreaking blog that sets the political scene. I can't help but think when I look at it that it's a bit dull, mundane and really rather tame. In the word of Scrybe it's webshite. Should the country ever have the misfortune to suffer another tory government I think that guido will really suffer as a new breed of anti tory blogs tear into the Eton collective and kick him off his anti Labour pedastal.
¶ 12:58 pm8 comments
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Gerald Kaufman a role model to us all .... Gerald Kaufman 77 this year and still one of the best parliamentarians around. Here is an article he did for the January's North West Labour rose:
Ten continuous years of Labour Government – sounds simple, doesn’t it ? Yet until theparty came to office on that astonishing day, 2 May 1997, we hadn’t ever had a Government for more than six years nor ever won more than two elections in succession,nor ever governed for two full Parliaments.. And until that golden day in May we hadn’thad a Labour Government at all for 18 years.
Now, it is easy to take our party’s decade in power for granted, just as it is easy to take for granted, or even forget, some of our most notable achievements. Remember the Tory ban on trade unionism at GCHQ ? We scrapped it immediately. Remember the Tories’ Primary Purpose rule, which made it almost impossible for spouses to get visas to join their partners here from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and other countries ? Labour got rid of that right away, and instituted rights of appeal against refusal of visitor visas as well.
Remember the Tories’ warning that a National Minimum Wage would cause even greater job losses than the mass unemployment created by the Thatcher and Major governments ? We brought it in, fulfilling a commitment in the days leading up to and on polling day in making sure we get our Labour voters to actually vote first made by Labour as long ago as 1906. It goes up steadily. And more people are in jobs now than at any time in our country’s history. In the North-West alone, over 3 million are in work, an increase of 6 per cent under this government.
The Tories and their running-dogs, the Liberal Democrats, want us to forget how they voted in Parliament against the Windfall Tax on privatised industries that helped to finance the New Deal, which has slashed youth unemployment and funded other valuable projects. Police jobs are up, as well, with a record number of lads and lasses in blue in the North-West and government spending on the police in our region up by 9 per cent.
Remember when we didn’t even have a Department of International Development ? The Tories abolished Harold Wilson’s Ministry of Overseas Development and gave the post, such as it was, to a junior Foreign Office Minister. Now our International Development cabinet Secretary of State leads the world in help for developing countries, with spending up a massive 121 per cent - and that is taking inflation into account.
Remember when we had to pay to go into museums and art galleries ? Labour scrapped the charges, and now more Britons than ever before are taking advantage of these marvellous facilities. Since we won in 1997, I raise this now, just to remind people what it was like under the Tories as compared to our Labour government spending on the arts is up 68 per cent, and on sport up by 81 per cent – again allowing for inflation.
Remember the Tories’ anti-gay Section 28 ? Gone, with the age of consent reduced to 16 and civil partnerships now taken for granted.
Tony Blair, when he took over Labour’s leadership, chanted the mantra: Education, education, education. Labour has kept its word. In my Gorton constituency, teachers used to combat for their pupils’ attention against rain coming through the roof. Again allowing for inflation, spending on school building under Labour is up by 145 per cent, and total spending on schools has risen by 65 per cent. Spending on higher education is up by 44 per cent. The results? Nationally, the numbers in higher education are up by 26 per cent. In the North-West, the number of primary school pupils in classes of over 30 is reduced from 242,764 to 95,541 – and still falling. And those kids are getting a better diet as well.In our region, 278,500 get free fruit and vegetables every day.
And under-fives are getting their biggest boost ever, with over 800.000 children with access to over 1,000 children’s centre services, and more than £2 billion going to something that never existed before May 1997, and, but we have seen record levels of investment in health, in transport, record levels of people in work like so many other Labour achievements, is now taken for granted. Sure Start’s the name of the fantastic project that didn’t exist ten years ago. At the other end of the age spectrum, neither did the £200 annual Winter Fuel Payment. Nor free bus travel, as a national project, for pensioners. We in the Labour Party have a proud record in Government. The problem is many people have short memories and have forgotten the disaster that was the Tory years of 1979 to 1997.
And pensioners benefit too, from free annualflu jabs, an amazing project accepted now as a matter of course – all part of the billions upon billions of extra spending on Labour’s National Health Service, with waiting lists slashed and lots more records still to be broken.
Yes. We can regard these 10 years as just the start if we stay united, maintain and strengthen our resolve, and go forward determined for a fourth successive Labour victory. We have achieved much. We can and will achieve
¶ 5:26 pm1 comments
Steve Hitchins ... From Bad to Worse
Oh dear it appears that Shitchins is in more trouble. The diversity Tsar that wasn't appointed through open competition has been annoying the same womenfolk he is meant to be helping. A quick look at the Lindyloo blog, yes it's Lindyloo you got a problem with that, shows that Shitchins has got a lot to learn.
Lesson number one: As a "diversity Tsar" don't say that appointments of women and ethnic minorities are "tokenism" Yes that applies even if it your job.
Lesson number two: Given that you have the social charm of your average ferret and frankly that is being a bit harsh on the ferret don't think you can get away with calling women you have only just met "luv"
¶ 10:56 am0 comments
Monday, February 12, 2007
I was minding my own business on the net when I saw a this picture of Steve Hitchins the booted out ex Fib Dem leader of Islington Council and new Fib Dem white male diversity Tsar. Now Mr Hitchins was perhaps not the most popular member of local government ever but it appears that he must have done something to piss of the staff as they have saved his picture as Shitchins.
Miss Prissy Knickers
Not how I would describe any of the ladies going for selection in Manchester Withington but it is how Fib Dems describe their newly reselected PPC in Islington South and Finsbury Bridget Fox. Charming. Glad we don't get into that kind of thing.
¶ 6:22 pm2 comments
The story that wont go away
I have noticed that some people are searching for information about Cameron and his time in the Bullingdon Club at Oxford as i'm not a very rich aristo who went to oxford I haven't got the any inside information but judging by the debris he looks to have had an interesting time.
I thought this was an interesting line from the oxford student "Cameron was member of the club at a time when it was de rigeur to engage in the ‘man of the people’ pursuits of washing down “a cocktail of drugs with an honest, working class box of chips and a five pound bottle of wine”."
The bit that really irritates me is not the alleged use of drugs by rich tory boys but I think going and smashing a restaurant and buying your way out of it is just showing contempt for people of the highest order.
McDonnell in Manchester Er no, but well done to Manchester Labour students for organising it. I wonder if we will see Gordon Brown doing Labour Club gigs come the leadership election. I hope so.
¶ 1:13 pm1 comments
TW: It depends on the type of blogging I guess. Unsourced, anonymous blogs that run scurrilous stories and then allow anonymous comments to character assasinate an opponent - that's bad for democracy. It is made all the worse when sites like yours Iain team up with the likes of Paul Delaire Staines. You give them legitimacy where none is deserved. And you do yourself a huge disservice defending his behaviour on television. Don't you think it's time we made a stand against this nonsense?
ID: Tom Watson, I'm surprised you have the cheek to show you face, let alone come out with such guff. Yesterday you posted a smear on your blog about Guido Fawkes and have now had to withdraw it. Perhaps you should start practising what you preach - ah, but I forgot, you're a New Labour MP. You don't believe the same laws apply to you, do you?
TW: Ah, glad you mention the Guido thing. Let us see the outcome of this particular debacle with Paul Delaire Staines.Rest assured though, if I am wrong, or in this case, if the Guardian are, I will apologise. Saying sorry is something I note you have never done, despite there being a long list of people you have made made allegations about that were then proven to be totally untrue.
I see that Mr Delaire Staines has admitted on his site that there will be an "about section" later this month. At least we can put a name to the dirt he peddles now. Still, you've been defending his actions and protecting his anonymity for months now. That wont matter to you either way will it.
ID:Tom, There have been many occasions on this blog where I have got things wrong and apologised. You only need to trawl the archives to find out.How exactly have I protected Guido's anonymity? he was 'outed' months ago. You don't like him because he threatens your ivory tower. The fact that you pathetically use his middle name says it all.
Get back to undermining Tony Blair. It's what you do best. Having said that, you didn't get that right did you?!
TW: Not going away Iain, sorry.
Fair Deal Phil Chris Bryant Tim Ireland
Say Sorry to them.As for Ivory Towers. Don't play that one with me man. You're as establishment as I am. Tory Agent, candidate, A-lister, Campaign Director to the Shadow Home Secretary, BBC commentator. You're hardly Chez Guevara are you?
ID: Tom, oh dear. People really do seem to delight in demanding apologies where none are due.
FairDealPhil, I don't recall the exact details of this but as far as I can remember I was supposed to be apologising for something someone else said.
Chris Bryant, I was duped by a Guardian story. I admitted it within 90 minutes. It was me that looked the fool. He then completely overreacted. I deleted the post at his request even though it was me that it made look stupid, not him.
Tim Ireland is demanding an apology because I asked a question. Asking questions is what I am paid to do. If he took offence at the question then I am sorry, but he is being over sensitive. You and I have been called far, far worse. Do we demand apologies every time anything bad is written or said about us? No. You take it on the chin and get on with life.
As I said before, if I get something wrong or go over the top in my language, it is my custom to apologise. I don't really care whgether you accept that or not.
¶ 12:48 pm2 comments
Sunday, February 11, 2007
BBC gets it wrong again...
Lets get this right Manchester is not in any way, shape or form a second city. It is the best city in this country and if any Londoner want to disagree go talk to rush hour tube users. Go on I dare you.
¶ 11:33 pm2 comments
Withington's comedy connections
Manchester Withington Labour people are singing like canaries ala CP's Fib Dems about the selection but it's all good stuff as they have a strong field of contenders to take on the rascal soon to be ex MP Leech. Personnally I think all the wannabe MP's seeking selection would do a better job than the lying toerag John Leech so i'm not to bothered who wins as long as they are up for what will be a magnificent campaign.
I know it's a small world in politics but apparently Jenny Lennox used to share a house with Nick Parrott ex PPC in Kingston and a friend of mine from Labour student days. I shall have to check the authenticity of this as I only got the information from a single, though very good, source and we know what trouble the Labour party can get in when relying on information from a single source.
¶ 11:03 pm2 comments
Sushi made easy
Every so often you come across a website that is a cut above the rest and I have just found such a site. It about making sushi and it even has video and animation so even cooks who, like me wont be appearing on masterchef anytime soon, OK ever, think that it's doable. You can check it out here
¶ 1:28 am0 comments
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Chorlton Park Labour
Another nail in soon to be ex MP John Leech's political coffin has arrived in the blogosphere.
¶ 7:10 pm0 comments
Friday, February 09, 2007
Is Blunkett going soft on drugs as he misses crack right in front of him?This is a photo of a BBC Asian Network debate on Big Brother at the University of East London. Clearly the photographer in front of Blunkett is doing a joint photography and building degree. I don't know what her pictures turned out like but she passed her builders bum exam with flying colours.
¶ 6:53 pm0 comments
Tory's and the Drugs Barons?
An excerpt on the sale of Smith Square from the Guardian
The freehold was sold on twice to offshore companies, ending up in the hands of a British Virgin Islands company, Platinum Overseas Holdings, which was owned by clients of the US bank, Citibank.
The secret owners of the company bought the freehold for £12.27m and sold it back to the Tories last year for £15.65m. The Tories say they do not know who the owners of the offshore company are and relied on assurances from Citibank that they were legitimate businessmen under the government's anti money laundering rules.
What's the betting that the Tories have just handed a bunch of drugs barons a £3m+ profit on money laundered assets? Why did the owners of Platinum Overseas Holdings need to hide behind a bank? Why should we trust Citibank? Can the Tories be so stupid as to give £15m+ to people they have no idea who they are? Yes is the simple answer.
¶ 11:10 am0 comments
Thursday, February 08, 2007
Setting the record straight .... for Brussels
We pay far to much attention to the emotionally charged but reality free and often factually inaccurate eurosceptic arguements in this country. Richard Corbett MEP takes them to task here. Nice one.
¶ 8:57 pm0 comments
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
The Newest Member of Unison's Parliamentary Panel is ... Rupa Huq. Rupa has already been on the 2004 European list in the North West and was our candidate in Chesham and Amersham in 2005. Alas in both instances the electorate missed the golden opportunity of actually electing her. Though it should be pointed out that one of her erstwhile electorate in Chesham and Amersham was Robert Kilroy Silk so not getting his endorsement should hardly be a cause for concern.
¶ 11:48 pm2 comments
Monday, February 05, 2007
On the left is Hugo Swire, Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. On the right is Grayson Perry another Tory MP er no actually "he" is an artist who wants to be called Claire. Grayson or Claire as he like to be known is a distinguished artist having won the Turner prize and could never be a Tory MP as her dress sense is far to good.
Swire's achievements have included going to Eton, St Andrews, Sandhurst and Sotheby's which may make him even posher than David Shameron. No doubt it is part of a cunning evil master plan by the shameron machine to paint Dave as a regular guy by surrounding him with people who are even posher than he is.
So post away but look at the disclaimer first as I have been advised to cover myself against legal shinanigans.
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John Edwards is clearly taking the policy heavy route to the Whitehouse. There are many reasons not to escalate the war in Iraq but I don't think the terrible fact that some GI's may not be able to access hairspray is the key clincher in the debate.
At least I know what I should be doing before going on Doughty Street.
¶ 8:14 pm2 comments
Sunday, February 04, 2007
Why being a Lib Dem MP is no job for lifeI have been having a play about on SPSS which is a statistical package used for data analysis and I was looking at the results for the Lib Dems at the last election and I think there is cause to suggest that the results make bleak reading for soon to be ex MP John Leech and other wastrel Lib Dem parliamentary squatters.
I was told once by a Labour hack who shall remain nameless that all soon to be ex MP John Leech had to do was ride a wave of anti government feeling and he shall have a job for life. Not sure it even had to be a Labour government just as long as it wasn't a Lib Dem one. I suppose the thinking behind it was they could follow the same negative campaigning style once in parliament as they had pursued as as a mere candidate seeking election.
The problem for the Lib Dems is that the results of the last general election show that it isn't that successful at all. In fact if you take out the by election winners and the MP's standing down for retirement with new candidates, basically if you just take Lib Dem MP's seeking relection MORE THAN HALF actually got a smaller percentage of the vote in 2005 than in 2001. Indeed four lost their seats in an election that saw the Lib Dems increase there number of seats overall.
Basically the data shows that the Lib Dems are more effective in seats where they are challengers than where they are incumbents. In the vast majority of seats where they just put up a candidate to say they are a national party but really didn't do much work there vote generally went up a bit based on the national picture. I don't like to admit it but the Lib Dems can be very effective campaigners. But they are not as good as they or we think they are once they hold a seat. Primarily this is because the voters have a higher expecation of MP's than candidates as they are afterall the people with the power and they are expected to get things done and since when has a Lib Dem MP got anything done?
This is the list of useless Lib Dems parliamentary squatters that the voters were less than impressed with as the percentage of the vote they got went down.
Norman Baker, Tom Brake, Malcolm Bruce, Paul Burstow, Edward Davey, Don Foster, Andrew George, Sandra Gidley, Mike Hancock, Evan Harris, Paul Holmes, Simon Hughes, Michael Moore, Mark Oaten, Adrian Sanders, Matthew Taylor, Steve Webb.
And these are the non by election people who lost their seats along with their previous majorities.
Sue Doughty 538 , Matthew Green 1630, David Rendel 2415, Brian Cotter 338.
Soon to be ex MP John Leech's majority today 667.
Shortly there will be a post on how the Lib Dems could easily get kicked out of 20 seats next time including the future Labour gain Manchester Withington.
¶ 5:48 pm4 comments
Saturday, February 03, 2007
18 and not for the first time. The Doughty Street crew have been foolish enough to invite me back on. Next Tuesday evening I shall be pointing out the error of their ways now that the 18 Doughty Street website is calling their wee pad "truly is a home and not just an office or studio. It is the home of the conservative movement."
Well Parburypolitica doesn't approve of conservative movements, not one bit. For one thing a conservative movement is about as close as you can get in polite society to constipation. So he is more than happy to enter enemy territory to sort out the mess that CCO's little emissaries try to pollute the minds of good left thinking British folk with.
¶ 1:26 pm3 comments
Red Dwarf Daphne
Acting is a career where you have to do some pretty dodgy roles before you hit the big time. You know the actress in Fraiser who plays Daphne Moon Jane Leeves. Well I found out today that TV execs in the US tried to do a US version of Red Dwarf. Fear not it never got past the pilot but nonetheless we get to see a much younger Janes Leeves playing Holly the computer.
There are two bits. The first one is 2m 47sec in and the second is 8m 8sec.
The No Standards Board
This is insane. If your a Labour Mayor of London and you compare a jewish reporter to a concentration camp guard because they both get paid to do bad things the standards board for England wants to have you removed from office despite having the largest personal mandate in the country.
On the otherhand if you are a BNP councillor in Burnley and you go in for some domestic violence in from of the children followed by taking a swing at the law, getting banned from the local football ground and get convicted for a racially aggravated public order offence just to top it off. That apparently is you private life and you are fit to hold public office.
And here is the best bit Coun Turner, 44, of Athletic Street, Burnley, became a councillor in May 2003 and is a member of the community safety partnership steering group. They must have some interesting discussions like how to keep the community safe from the members of the steering group.
Is it cause I is short?
How does Sarko intend to win the French presidential election? Is it by slagging off immigrants and slashing the public sector? Is it by being pathologically ambitious? Well for Sarko they all help but the real reason he thinks that you should vote for him is that he's a crazy disco dancer.
Best not let the electorate think about your crazy right wing politics eh Sarko.
¶ 11:31 am4 comments