Friday, 17 August 2007

The Poliblogs 17th August 2007

Drinking differently

Britain's drinking problem is not how much, but how. It's time for a French lesson.

Agnes Poirier

A general election in October

So, what are Gordon Brown's options for when to call the next general election? Well, he can go for whenever he wants (up to May 2010), that's the idiocy of not having fixed-term governments.

Have been looking at the betting odds for the date of polling day, and in the last couple of days the odds for an election this year have got shorter. Still 3-1 (last time I checked though).

Matt Davies

Islington London’s Caution Capital!

What are they playing at? I would be delighted if any of the failing Police Force in Islington would like to explain to me the following that has just been extracted under the freedom of information act .These are edited highlights of the list of crimes that have been cautioned only.


Show me the smoking gun

New figures suggest the smoking ban has produced a pretty small reduction in the number of people who smoke.

But we are told that making people quit is not the point of the legislation. According to a spokesman for the Department of Health:

Daniel Finkelstein

Ah! That delicate frisson of A-level result lesbionics!

I’ve just realised that its taken me until 4pm on A-level results day before seeing my first A-level result blonde (on the front cover of the Evening Standard).

A quick skip around the news websites:

Quaequam Blog

Prudence Brown - Scotland needs you. News - Scottish National Party - SNP: on brink of a financial 'black hole'?

THE SNP government is facing a financial crisis, with a potential spending shortfall of up to £2 billion in its budget plans, according to one of Scotland's leading experts in public expenditure.

An Englishman’s Castle

Osborne welcomes Redwood-Wolfson report but declines to commit to its tax recommendations

Interviewed for the Today programme at 8.10am Shadow Chancellor George Osborne gave a broad welcome to the report on economic competitiveness that will be formally launched later today by its co-chairmen, John Redwood MP and Next's Simon Wolfson.

Conservative Home

John Redwood MP: Freeing Britain to compete

Redwood_john Rt Hon John Redwood MP is Co-Chairman of the Economic Competitiveness Policy Group. In this article for ConservativeHome he argues that a more enterprising Britain will also be a freer, greener and more compassionate Britain.

Conservative Home

Is the Tory tax plan a gift to Gordon?

It’s the Tories bad luck that the policy group is reporting in the same week as the stock market collapse is leading to suggestions that the upward trend in house prices might go into reverse.

Political Betting

Under the shade of Redwood

The Conservative party leadership is canny enough to let John Redwood float his deregulatory policies - but too sharp to adopt them.

Michael White

Don't Hold Your Breath

Plaid Cymru Welsh Assembly member Leanne Wood (of whom see this blog passim) is becoming inordinately excited by the wily Alex Salmond’s proposals for a referendum on independence for Scotland. With touching naivete, she is hoping for much the same to happen in Wales.

Writing in today’s Western Mail, Miss Wood enthuses:

David Jones MP

Drop the dead shark!

Scotland has a chance to join the small states that combine entrepreneurial flair with social-democratic responsibility.

Christopher Harvie

Rein in finance

Those who say this is just a stock market wobble that will soon blow over, are in denial.

Larry Elliott

London politics in primary colours?

I find it fascinating that Tories appear to have leapt on this speculation that Labour might be attempting to rig the Conservative primary for London Mayor.

If it is true, then Labour is full of even more morons than I thought. You would have thought they learnt from their attempts to stitch up the Today programme Christmas poll in 1996. There is simply no way they could organise a mass entryist campaign without having to show their hand. There’d have to be a paper trail, an email trail… you know the drill.

Quaequam Blog

Could Cameron’s primary plan be used to stop Boris?

In what could appear an ill-thought out move during the brash days of Cameron’s leadership the Tories decided that their choice for London mayor should be decided by an open primary in which any London voter could take part.

But what sounded like a PR stunt could now be used against the party by its opponents to stop Boris getting on the ballot.

Political Betting

ID Card “FAQs and myths”

The Identity & Passport Service website has some “FAQs and myths” on its website about ID Cards and the National Identity Register. The pages in question can be found at

Lets have a look at some of the “FAQs” and “myths”:

Wonko’s World

Telegraph Political Team in Meltdown

As reported here three weeks ago, it seems that the Little and Large blog is dead, it is an ex-blog. Jonathan Isaby and Brendan Carlin seem to have abandoned the idea. Look around some of the other blogs and they are also pretty dead. Ben Brogan at the Daily Mail and Danny Finkelstein at The Times are really the only serious Dead-Tree-Press political bloggers going now.

Guido Fawkes

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