Tuesday, 10 July 2007

The Poliblogs: 10th July 2007

Hilary Armstrong : "Three MPs Drunk Themselves to Death"

Ex-chief whip Hilary Armstrong has gone on the record to the Whitehall & Westminster newsletter with a candid admission that many MPs are drunks. "There was a period where there was a lot of trouble about drinking. It was an issue for the public and it was an issue for the House of Commons, as there were two or three members who died having had a really serious drink problem..."

Guido Fawkes


The latest Michael Moore film, Sicko, about the American health insurance system is knocking around on GoogleVideo for those whose ethics don’t preclude them watching it.

I’ll probably go to the cinema for this one, but the opening credits I watched just now should be enough to get most Brits down on their knees to thank god and Nye Bevan for the NHS.

Recess Monkey

The Brown boost - lessons from history

All the polls since Gordon Brown became Prime Minister have shown Labour once again enjoying a lead over the Conservatives - it looks indisputable that Labour have received a boost from their change in leader. The question is whether it will last - is this a temporary effect of the blanket positive publicity that Gordon Brown was receiving when the most recent polls were conducted, or a short term effect of enthused Labour supporters and public goodwill towards the new man in the job, or is it a longer term change with Gordon Brown acting as the new broom transforming a Labour administration that had become stale and unpopular?

Polling Report

A Nice Little Earner

Aha now we know why Nanny is so keen on speed cameras.

Not for our safety...it's the money stupid!

It seems that the Treasury took more than £15M from the fines paid by drivers caught by speed cameras in England and Wales in 2005/2006.

Nanny Knows Best

EXCLUSIVE (really this time!): Tories brag about dirty tricks

Leading Romford Conservative activist Billy Taylor and personal friend of Greg Hands MP has been bragging about stealing (sic) election literature:

6 Romford Tories were out delivering leaflets today (Sunday 8th) in Ealing and managed not just to deliver a whole polling district, but we managed to steal over 150 Lib Dem leaflets and 20 Labour out of letterboxes!!! (my emphasis)

Surely theft is illegal? Where do the Tories dig up these criminals?

James Graham

The Ministry of Politiking

Yesterday morning, when the new of five Labour councillors defecting to the Conservative Party in Ealing Southall broke I said it would not be long before the five were trashed and smeared, and here it is. If you can't get yourself through Unity's ever present dense style where you get to the end and forgot what it was you read eight days ago at the beginning, the general gist is that the five councillors are linked to terrorists in some way.

Dizzy Thinks

Don’t blame Campbell. It was the media’s fault

Why, asked my American friend yesterday, concerning the furore over Alastair Campbell’s diaries, “are the English so up their own asses?” The thing seemed simple to him. In the US publication follows resignation as pension follows job. George Tenet, Director of the CIA till the summer of 2004, published At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA within 30 months. The former counter-terrorism boss, Richard A. Clarke, completed Against All Enemies rather faster than that. In both cases the ensuing argument was about the accuracy of their claims, rather than the probity of their bibliographical activities.

David Aaronovitch

Campbell Shows A Glimpse of Real Labour Ankle

Now I know its adding to the misery of the nation but I cannot resist a couple, of comments about the self infatuated Campbell kiss and tell. I have for a long time argued that the entire Blair Government was founded on the lie that there was ever a “New” Labour. Newspapers love change naturally, it gives them something to talk about. They are also written by people who have never done anything and are uniquely impressed with image. That’s why the commentators got “New Labour fundamentally wrong in this sense.

Islington Newmania

Labour Unravelling In Ealing

Ealing Defections

With just over a week to go until the Ealing Southall by-election 5 local Labour councillors have defected to the Tories. In addition, an independent candidate has stood aside and backed the Conservative candidate. The 2005 GE result demonstrates the scale of the task, but in the 2006 local elections we ran neck-and-neck with Labour and won Ealing council overall.

Prague Tory

This broken society rhetoric leaves Cameron marooned

'A trumpet blast to shake the smug liberal consensus to its foundations." Thus the Daily Mail heralds today's final report from Iain Duncan Smith's social justice commission on "Breakdown Britain". Splashed across the front page, it celebrates David Cameron's weekend pledge "to overhaul the tax and benefit system in favour of marriage as part of a Conservative crusade to mend Britain's 'broken society'." It is rare for the Mail, intent on frightening Cameron off the centre ground into their wilderness of daily wails, to give him unequivocal support. His marriage policy is their victory, boxing him into their own moral agenda without any idea yet how it can be done, at what cost - and with what collateral damage.

Polly Toynbee

Clarkson on trial

We need an international environmental court - so that we can prosecute the Top Gear presenter for crimes against the planet.

I have a dream. I dream of putting Jeremy Clarkson on trial for crimes against the planet. A dream to make me sway a little less on my cycle, as I risk death on the roads when yet another SUV driven at speed misses me by millimetres.

Derek Wall

Too Many Graduates

There's simply too many:

Competition for degree-level jobs is so intense that every vacancy is being chased by 29 new graduates, according to the latest graduate recruitment survey.

Of course, that doesn't mean that there are 29 times too many: all will be applying for more than one job.

Tim Worstall

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