Expectations are so low of Hammond that provided he doesn’t fall over, the ceiling doesn’t collapse and a Juncker impersonator doesn’t storm the chamber with a £60bn bill, it will be a triumph

21 Nov 2017 at 08:35

Philip Hammond is an odd chap. Despised by his civil servants at defence and the foreign office, the charisma of a bag of pork scratchings and the bonus of being blessed with the emotional intelligence of a tub of pot noodle. Worse, his Budget speech will be delivered with all the warmth and excitement of a speak your weight machine. So don’t expect Johnsonian virtuosity. Thank heavens for small mercies.

At least Hammond would have read and understood his brief. At least he knows where he is going, even if he is not entirely sure how he will get there let alone when. His problem will not be those in front of him, but a lot of those who sit behind. The carpet biters hate him. They want to see him gone. Yesterday. They have a venomous, bile soaked, psychotic hatred of anyone who doesn’t deeply believe, not just say, that Brexit will lead to an Utopian miracle of economic success and prosperity. They desperately want him to fail and want him replaced by a member of their cult. Leadsom, Gove. Anyone who is a true believer. That is why it is so important that he succeeds on Wednesday.

I suspect that unless he has a Greggs moment he will more likely do a Corbyn. Expectations are so low that as long he doesn’t fall over, the ceiling cave in or a Juncker impersonator storm the chamber and hand him a bill for £60 billion, he will survive. His trick will be to play the swivelled eyed game and muse at the wonders and opportunities of a post Brexit Britain. Nobody will believe a word of it, but needs must. He must then give a nod to the city and business that he will be responsible and not steer the government towards the cliff edge. And for heaven’s sake take more than a brief interest in enterprise which has has been lamentably ignored by the government. Housing is rightly top of the agenda. Who can afford a flat even in a dodgy part of London apart from bankers and hedge fund managers? But don’t kid yourself that we are going to win the youth vote with a £300 bribe. If Hammond takes away concessions that people my age have paid a lot of hard earned tax for, there will be serious trouble. We all pray that any eye catching initiatives will not fall apart after a week because they haven’t been properly costed or sold. And if the rumours are true, the whips have been doing an operation to put the kibosh on some of the madder ideas coming from the Treasury. But the fact that this has been ‘leaked’ suggests that this is probably a black ops bit of disinformation.

Sadly, Grieve is right. Some of the Brexiteers have become unhinged. For Cash to say that flotillas of slaughtered British youth died in two World Wars because they wanted Brexit is not just unhinged but damn insulting. And I still can’t quite work out why the government wants to set in stone that we must leave the EU at 11pm on the 29th March 2019 precisely. Madness. It can’t possible be passed and they know it. Was it designed to fail to keep the Brexiteers happy? I really don’t know. I am not a psychiatrist.
So this budget is meant to give the government a boost in the opinion polls. To show confidence, competence and imagination. Oh dear, I fear I must retire to my bed for all of tomorrow. The excitement of a Hammond budget is just too much. But if he pisses too many people off he will be gone by Christmas.

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I suppose we should be grateful that Priti Patel didn’t holiday in North Korea. But the Ratcliffe affair shows Boris as a lazy, careless, incompetent oaf. Madame must be bold and sack him

9 Nov 2017 at 11:25

Well, I suppose we can all sigh with relief that Priti Patel didn’t holiday in North Korea. But my mind is in turmoil. I just can’t make up my mind who is more ghastly, her or Boris. Both are hopelessly over promoted, over rated and over exposed. Both are headline chasers. And both don’t give a damn about anything other than a delusional sense of entitlement to the keys of Downing Street. They really are quite awful people. Never mind nearly throwing a spanner in the works of Middle Eastern diplomacy. Never mind not bothering to read your brief about a woman languishing in an Iranian hell hole jail and doubling her sentence with a few lazy, ill chosen remarks. But probably their worst crime is that they probably don’t think that they have done anything particularly wrong. Worse, that they don’t even care. She returns to the backbenches with the Disneyland belief that the troops will rally behind her. They won’t. And remarkably he is still there. Not a blush of humility, a whiff off remorse nor even a snigger of apology.

Poor Mrs Ratcliffe, as if she hadn’t got enough trouble without the assistance of Bozo. He has given the largest exporters of terror a wonderful propaganda tool. They now say that this is an ‘unintended confession’ by Britain. And what does the little creep do? Pull out all the stops to get her released? Of course not. He just rings up the Iranians and asked for an assurance that his slack mouthed incompetence wasn’t responsible for adding to her troubles. And then he tells us that he received that assurance. We now know that that is a lie. As if we couldn’t guess.

This really is a turning point for Boris. The public can put up with his capers, his disloyalty, his Janus faced promises, but will not stand for his cavalier treatment of an innocent. He has morphed from a rather bad joke wearing thin, to a menace. A clear and present danger. Madame can really show strength by sacking him. He is no longer the useful human shield against the carpet biters. He has become a serious liability to foreign policy at a time when the well oiled Rolls Royce of the Foreign Office is in despair. And she could get away with it. The longer she leaves him in post the worse it will become. Sadly, the Ratcliffe saga will run and run. This is the beginning of the Christmas season. The country turns their thoughts to family. Mrs.Ratcliffe will be alone and afraid. Her family will in bits. It will not escape the attention of the media.

May can risk sacking Boris. The party have no desire to be led by an ageing Lothario anymore. They can sniff young blood. His following is diminishing. The joke has worn off. This is a rare window of opportunity to show she can be strong and in control if she really puts her mind to it.

I am not convinced that there is any merit in the current fantasy that the government will fall by Christmas or that Madame will soon be ushered out of the door. It may be Christmas, but Tory turkeys won’t vote for it. Madame should be known as Tina, as Thatcher was at the height of her pomp. Tina? There Is No Alternative. Oh, and don’t give me all that Moggmentum moonshine. One day Guido will reveal that Mogg doesn’t really exist and that he’s really Sasha Baron Cohen making a movie. Surely, it cannot be possible that he is real.

So now is the time to be bold. While Boris is taking a wrecking ball to diplomacy Brussels is in total confusion. We don’t seem to have a coherent Foreign policy just a series of back drops for a few Bozo one liners. We are in a very bad place. He has to go. Soon. The government needs to be reborn. The hopeless and clueless have to be culled. There are plenty of able youngsters who could rejuvenate the government. Who knows, we might see Tom Tugendhat in the Cabinet before long. Now he is classy.

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This is not a good start for the new chief whip.he is meant to be calm under fire & sound in judgment, not behave like a panicky little shit. The treatment of Charlie Elphicke is a disgrace. Such treachery will destroy whatever morale is left

4 Nov 2017 at 09:35

The hysteria, blind panic and the whiff of McCarthyism that has gripped all political parties in Westminster is unedifying and deeply damaging to all politicians. Two news items this morning that sent shivers down my spine and put anger in my belly was the way the Whips Office have treated Charlie Elphike and Anna Soubrey’s interview in the Times.

Let’s deal with Charlie first. A serious accusation has been made and rightly referred to the police. It is now entirely a matter for them. At some stage the usual, ‘a forty five year old man is assisting us with our enquiries’, statement will appear. The press get a tip off and the horror of photographers camping out side his house begins. The accused at least knows what he has been accused of and can take advice, preferably from a solicitor rather than some dodgy ‘ reputation damage limitation expert’, on how to deal with it. My simple advice would be make a denial and say nothing more. Never give a story legs. But the Tory whips office took it upon themselves to brief the press. They didn’t warn Elphicke. They didn’t even tell him what had happened. He didn’t even know that he had been suspended until he saw it on the news. He has been publicly accused, and until the police interview the complainant and then knock on Elphicke’s door in the early hours, he won’t have a clue what his crime is meant to have been or even who his accuser is. That not rough justice. It’s no justice at all. He has been tainted. He has been tried, convicted and sentenced in the highest court of the land. The most unpredictable and unfair. The court of public opinion.

This is not a good start for our new chief whip. He is meant to be calm under fire and sound in judgment. Not to behave like a panicky little shit.

So before the police bang on his door in the full glare of the cameras, Elphicke will be asked by his wife, his kids, his friends, his constituency association and his local newspapers, what the hell this is all about. He won’t be able to answer. And that in the court of public opinion is a clear sign of guilt. But if he hasn’t been told how can he know? Utterly disgraceful and a terrible stain on the whips office.

What are colleagues going to think? The whips are going to expect them to jump through hoops, vote on ludicrous party lines, be encouraged to support a policy one day and denounce it the next and be general lobby fodder for a government who couldn’t arrange a piss up in the Sports and Social. If backbenchers think that they will be shafted by them at the drop of a hand on knee accusation which could destroy their careers and everything they hold dear, why should they bother? This McCarthyite treachery is terrible for what ever morale is left.

Whilst mentioning the Sports and Social, I do wish John Mann would shut up. He’s a decent and well meaning old cove, but the idea of safe places, banning MPs from this bar and suggesting that no employee to be in Parliament after six pm is a naivety to the point of drivelling.

And now for Anna Soubry. I know it’s terribly flattering to be feted and interviewed by two of Fleet Street’s finest, but the reason they are so good is because they always get a story, and poor boobies like her and Loathesome don’t realise How good it is until they see it in cold print.

Anna, your heart is in the right place, but as I have been told by senior civil servants that used to work for you, you don’t all ways engage mouth and brain in an orderly fashion. A throwaway remark in a tea shop about a sexual assault by Fallon, a criminal offence, would normally be libellous. But as a lawyer you know that once a man has had his reputation destroyed he will never sue. So you took advantage for a cheap headline that Fallon hasn’t got a clue how to defend because he doesn’t know what the accusation is. Kicking a man when he is down is appalling, reprehensible, unforgivable, beyond shitty, behaviour. And your comments that Green should be suspended on the flimsiest of evidence from the flakiest of sources was incomprehensible, deeply damaging and unnecessary. Your defence of Loathesome? Bordering on the deranged.

Who on earth would want to be an MP? People think that you are corrupt, lying, sex pests. And today is going to be hell. Awaiting for that dreaded five PM call from Simon Walters or Nigel Nelson. But at least they will tell you what you are accused of unlike a treacherous whips office and slack mouthed MPs on the make. Thanks God I am no longer part of this vile pantomime.

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A clever move to promote Williamson. She has effectively named her skip a generation successor. There will be more blood but it will be manageable

2 Nov 2017 at 11:36

Only time will tell if it was a misjudgment of biblical proportions to allow Michael Fallon to resign. There may be further allegations against him of a similar nature. There may not be. Most of us haven’t got a clue. But for allegations that go well short of sexual abuse, misuse of power, bullying or degrading women, ministers should remain in office. And he was a damn good minister

Sometimes Madame just doesn’t think things through. I would imagine in most matters sexual outside marriage she is a bit of an innocent. When she first heard about Fallon and Green she is meant to have remarked, ‘why don’t they just get on with the job?’ I suspect that in the Prime Minister’s study there is a big red button under a smashable glass lid emblazoned with the legend ‘only press when something needs to be done’. So when a crisis happens the glass is broken, the button is pressed. But magic solution there is none. Just klaxons, sirens, flashing red lights and a robotic voice warning, ‘crisis! Crisis! Something must be done!’ In rush the advisors. ‘Well Gavins how do we handle this?’
‘Easy Prime Minister’, they shout in unison. ‘Something must be done’. And so the Tories do what they are so good at. They panic.

It is a dangerous and contagious disease in politics to chase headlines. They all say they’ll never do it, but by and large they can’t help themselves. They should have read the runes. The Tory press are not too exercised about low level pass making. In the Mail Jane Moir had a crack at Kate Maltby. And even the saintly Michael White poured cold water over it all. But Michael old chum, best you don’t do interviews after lunch. Saying that female political journalists are predictors is a terrible travesty of the truth and has just lost you a hell of a lot of street cred. Such as it was. Which was not a lot.

I suppose the great irony of this whole sorry tale is that old goat Boris, who appears to have a nineteenth century squirearchy attitude to women, walks unscathed through this sewer of suspicion. You’d picture him pimp rolling his was across the chequered flagstones of his bijou baronial hall in full riding gear with whip in hand shouting to his butler, ‘Grayling, get me our finest bottle of breakfast claret and some cold grouse. Just horse whipped the game keeper, shagged his wife and the tweeny maid. Now need to build up strength to bugger the stable boy’.

The appointment of Gavin Williamson as Defence Secretary is actually a stroke of genius. It means that Green is dispensable. It means that any ministerial departures will be finessed by him. And there will be few scandalous surprises. He knows all their little ways. It will restore stability. And she knows she can trust him as an ally and a formidable operator. He has been appointed Secretary of State for the Defence of the Government. That is his prime directive. To keep the ship of state afloat and ensure a frictionless transition to a new leader when the time arises. And it could well be him. She has effectively named her successor.
Without blowing my own trumpet too much……well sod it🎶🎶🎶🎶. I was the first commentator to say that he could be the future. And I may be right.

Much about politics is about luck as well as ability. Gavin has been a lucky guy. Chief whip at a time of turmoil. Brokering the DUP deal. And realising that the only way to stop government defeat is a mass abstention. Not a stroke of genius, but just a way for them all to survive for a little longer. So he will have appointed Julian Smith as Chief whip. Another May Trusty. He helped Williamson run her leadership campaign. And then Esther McVey as his deputy is a clever move. A permanent visual reminder to that horrible old Trot McDonnell, who still hasn’t apologised for calling her a bastard who should be lynched.

So Williamson is a close confidante not just of Madame but Gavin Barwell, a popular and slick operator. All that he needs to do now is appoint a charismatic party chairman who can modernise and enthuse the party. It won’t be long.

This is straight from the ‘skip a generation’ play book.

So Williamson has now to prove himself at defence at a difficult time with budget cuts and an insane proposal to cut the £29 per diem active service pay. This is a gift for him if played right. He can wrap himself in Kkaki. Do a deal with the Chancellor and be lauded by the Tory press as a fighter for our brave boys and girls. A good showcase for the next move.

Interesting that his pet Tarantula is called Cronus. The Greek myth might be instructive. There was a prophecy that Cronus was going to be overthrown by his sons, so he sired sons with the Gods. To prevent the prophecy from coming true he devoured them all at birth.

There will be some more blood sacrifices. But we can rest assured that normal service has been restored. This is good news for the party and the end of the road for Boris. Expect a resignation in a fit of pique sooner rather than later.

For the first time in a long while I am beginning to feel a glimmer of optimism.

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It won’t be long before the Piety Police turn us into a nation of wankers

1 Nov 2017 at 10:06

Like the rest of the world I have pawed through the ‘dirty dossier’. And what a disappointment it proved to be. Because it is not very dirty at all. There were no great revelations. Just a dreary catalogue of ‘inappropriate behaviour’. Shock horror, gays have liaisons with other gay men. And heterosexuals have liaisons with other heterosexuals. This is hardly front page News of the Screws material. So fifteen years ago Michael Fallon put his hand on Julia Hartley Brewer’s knee. If she could see the funny side of it why can’t everyone else. And Kate Maltby’s allegations against Damian Green are bizarrely tame. What is so disgraceful about this little tale is that if she is telling the truth she is breaching a very personal and very private conversation. Unless there are allegations of sexual assault which should be reported to the police, the public are going to tire of this sad litany of lonely, pissed, middle aged men trying it on in the Sports and Social.

Years ago I was having a drink with Sir Robin Day and a very famous and very attractive television presenter. He just couldn’t take his hands off of her. I was very embarrassed and was just about to intervene when she just calmly looked him in the eye and just said, ‘oh, just fuck off Robin’. The wandering hands ended their journey.

True to form Fleet Street is putting the dick into predictability and moving into full feeding frenzy mode. And it will backfire. People were rightly furious about MPs trousering their hard earned cash, but they really don’t give a damn about their sexual habits unless they are illegal, particularly perverted or bizarre. And do we know who has drawn up this list? Do we know on what evidence it is based? Or is it just a compendium of gossip and rumour picked up in the bars and tea rooms by the prurient bored and mischievous. And how do they define ‘inappropriate behaviour’. It’s pretty clear that unwanted sexual demands are. Butwhat about the lead up to them? Is it inappropriate to drop a note to a pretty girl inviting her for a drink? And after a fun evening ask if she fancies a shag? Of course not. But it would be inappropriate to inundate her with offers of drinks and sex if she has said no. Its pretty obvious. It’s the grey areas which will be confusing to some. Is it acceptable to kiss someone on both cheeks at first meeting? Is it acceptable to put a friendly, non sexual, hand on a knee? Well, I bloody hope so because I do it all the time.

Now every bar and restaurant within groping distance of Westminster will be full of informers and spies, trying to make political capital, cash from the papers or just cause trouble. If you are a single politician just how are you meant to get any sex? There is now such a climate of fear that these guys will turn into the wankers we always thought they were. It’s all rather sad.

Of course, we must expose the sex pests. Of course, we must give vulnerable employees an independent body who can discreetly deal with grievances. But now there is talk amongst some lawyers, who should know better, to embrace a culture of putting the onus of proof on the accused. This is very dangerous. A man accused of touching someone up in a bar having to prove his innocence? Have we really come to this? I pray we won’t.

We expect far too much of our politicians. To work long hours for less pay than they would expect on the open market. To be insulted, assaulted and sometimes killed. To always be available. To follow a party line that is sometimes ludicrous. To intone that the electorate always knows best whilst keeping a straight face. To be pillars of sobriety and continent is sexual behaviour. In other words we demand the impossible. Of course politicians should do their best to have higher standards than the rest of us but it must be a hope rather than an expectation. We haven’t asked them to join holy orders. Or maybe we have. When the Piety Police start to patrol the corridors of power it will will be a sad day for politics. And it’s only just beginning.

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My journey. When I was ravished propositioned and groped at Westminster

29 Oct 2017 at 16:02

I really do think that we should all take a deep breath and put the sexual harassment stories at Westminster into some sort of sane perspective. Westminster is no different from anywhere else when it comes to the beery breathed office groper. There are no less ageing lothsarios with badly dyed hair, tight suits, creepy smiles, cringing chat up lines and wandering hands. There are no less men of a certain age who will put a hopeful arm around a pretty boy. And no less predatory females who can sniff out a willing young cock at fifty paces. In my time, we all knew who they were and sniggered at their exploits which usually ended in failure. Many of them would have been horrified if anyone would have said yes to their cheesy demands. Over the years I have been, propositioned, touched up and ravished in the corridors of power. It is neither a boast nor a moan and I don’t need treatment nor go on a journey. But at least I was in a position where if things got a little too frisky I could make my excuses and leave or deliver a swift kick in the bollocks. Nowadays not all youngsters are in that sort of position. They can be overawed, scared and not quite sure how to handle things. These are the ones we must protect.

I remember a very prominent Loyalist MP was so desperate for a shag and knowing that I liked a stiff gin and tonic ensured that a flunky was always on hand with chilled glass when I visited Stormont. Well, the only stiff I ever had in my hand was the gin. And I remember fighting off a mauling from an ageing South American diplomat at a Foreign Office lunch that I was hosting. It first started with a stockinged foot probing my groin under the table and an assumption that I would return to her hotel room for some reciprocal Parliamentary rumpy pumpy in the interests of the friendship of our great nations. The list is endless and this was pretty harmless stuff which I dined out on for years. But these were the days of a culture of endless late night sittings, drunken brawls and very, very bad behaviour. In many ways the women were safer then than they are now. Because they were so bloody tough. Put a hand on Edwina Currie, Dame Elaine Kellett Bowman, Dame Jill knight and a host of battle hardened women who had fought their way to the top would lead to…..well, nothing actually. Nobody would dare.

But let’s get things into perspective. There is absolutely nothing wrong with flirting. We all do it and if done tastefully, reciprocated and clearly innocent, it is harmless fun. The trick is not to make anybody feel uncomfortable. There is an invisible line which should never be crossed. Most people know where it is. The moment it is ignored you cease to be a genial flirt and turn into a predator. Forbidden territory. And that is when action has to be taken.

It goes without saying that no man or woman should take advantage of their position and prey on the young, vulnerable and ambitious. In the courts the dilemma for the jury is often confronted with is two young people under the influence of drink, but not drunk enough to make consent impossible. There are no witnesses and no supporting medical evidence (there rarely is) to say whether the sexual act was consensual or not. The difficulty for those of us who prosecute and defend these sorts cases is that the accuser rightly has the right to be believed, but so does the defendant. So how can a jury be sure of guilt?

Let’s try and translate this to Westminster. But let me make it clear that I am not talking about sexual assault. Unless the alleged predatory behaviour is in a public place with witnesses, or there is a history between the two, who do the authorities believe?

The casting couch, the power shag, the office groper have never left us and sadly probably never will. What we have to do is ensure that men and women who are put in potentially dangerous and uncomfortable positions can have the confidence to come forward. And be listened too.

The press are going to have a feeding frenzy over the Sodom and Gomorrah that Westminster will be wrongly depicted as. Oh, but the stories I could tell you about journalists! The editor who sexually assaulted the wife of a prominent MP in the ladies loo. The guy who shagged a secretary in the grounds of the MOD and was caught on CCTV. The endless gropings with interns and the long lists of editors and their mistresses are the low hanging fruit. So although I have signed the Fleet Street Omarta, MPs under threat may not be so fussy and rush to Guido Fawkes. Guys, if there is going to be a war on MP sleaze it will be a blood bath for everybody.

The danger is that the Thought Police who have given us safe places and jazz handing are on patrol. Let’s be honest, Michael Gove’s comments on the Today programme were neither offensive nor would deter people from complaining about sexual misconduct. Why on earth did he have to apologise? Similarly, Clive Lewis’s remark in jest to a man “on your knees bitch” is hardly degrading to women. Jared O’Mara’s conduct is rather sinister though. I suspect that he has some serious and very unpleasant demons to deal with. He will have to go on another journey. The last train out of Westminster.

But I too have been on a journey. On a train back from Westminster to my home. I wanted to be left in peace to read my Evening Standard when two young girls a little the worse for wear for drink wanted my autograph as a Z list celebrity. I obliged. I whipped out my pen which they exchanged for lipstick. “Nah Jerry we want it on our tits”. And as the fool that I am, I signed them. The writing is a little wobbly though.

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The Tories have morphed from the nasty to the nutty and soon will be as intolerant, purist and out of touch as Labour

14 Oct 2017 at 10:38

The crimes of the traitor Hammond seem to know no bounds. Not only is he sabotaging the God ordained Utopia of Brexit, but he has been spotted dining with that anti Christ Juncker running dog, Euro stooge, May hater and baiter in chief, George Osborne. On Lobster! The sheer wickedness of their meal has sent the Brextards into a frothing, snarling frenzy of bitterness and bile. The great Lobster Plot will go down in the annals of betrayal as the proof that Hammy is an enemy of the people and must be sacked. First the execution and then the show trial. It is proof that the the traitor Cameron is running a Commission funded counter offensive to bring our great and free country back under the control and tyranny of the jackboot of Juncker. All from his shepherd’s hut, where he receives orders on an encrypted communications device from the war monger and traitor Blair.

What is so remarkable is that those who won the referendum have so little confidence in themselves or their project. They see betrayal around every corner and regard anyone who doesn’t scream that Brexit is going to be a phenomenal success with suspicion based on a deep seated fear that everyone is out to get them. A paranoia has gripped them. That’s the problem. Deep in the dark tea time of their souls there is a tiny sliver of doubt. By repeating the mantra that Britain is going to be running barefoot through the wheat fields of prosperity and opportunity it will magically come true. So the Party must be purified. Only true believers can worship at the shine. And only the high priests can be trusted to to deliver. Purge. Repent. Burn at the stake. Purge. Not even David Davis is safe. They want him to fail.

My once tolerant broad churched party is now being run as a cult. We are becoming a Borg collective where everyone has to be assimilated and resistance is futile. Brexit is all that matters. May is merely the midwife. She will be disposed of if she wavers or if she is less than pure in her beliefs and actions. And she will be cast aside the moment we formally leave and replaced by a true believer.

We have lost the will to govern. We have forgotten the people we were elected to serve. We have lost our edge and are losing our humanity. What sort of twisted thinking allows a system to withhold money from those genuinely most in need and then charge them 55p per minute for a phone call to try and feed their starving families? What sort of Tory minister warns that ‘homes are not chattels to be passed on to their children’? We were once the party of fiscal responsibility, but now the Chancellor is being pilloried for not spending billions on window dressing. For a deception that no deal is better than a bad deal. And there lies the problem. The truth is that the purists don’t want a deal at all. Not even a good one. They want out. Now. Pull up the drawbridge. Fuck the world. They need us. We certainly don’t need them. Soon they will be swarming to our battlements for deals. And if we feel like it and on our own terms, we might deign to throw them a few crumbs. Now breathe in and inhale the heady oxygen of freedom.

The sadness is that we have morphed from the nasty to the nutty party. And with all the betrayals, the treachery the purges, the show trials, the lists of dissenters and the sheer intolerance we are now morphing into the Labour Party. We have much in common. Moderates who are vilified and excluded. Everything viewed though the prism of a dogma. The purity of thought and ideas. Will nobody stand up and be counted from moderate wings of both parties? Or are they such spineless cowards they that will just wait at home for the inevitable early morning knock on the door? You either religiously worship at the altar of Momentum or Brexit. Any dissent is ruthlessly crushed.

This country is best governed from the centre. Yet the two major parties are hell bent on a race to the extremes which will soon repulse voters. Is there anybody who has the courage to show leadership? Who can wake their parties from sleep walking into extremism? Or is it time to found a new party of the centre? Of Pragmatism. Of moderation. Of common sense. Of compassion. Is it really to much to ask? Because people like me and there are millions of us, are feeling politically homeless. If not totally abandoned.

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Gavin Williamson has enhanced his reputation as the Party's Beria by ruthlessly demolishing the Coup de Twat

9 Oct 2017 at 11:18

I am not entirely sure that the nation is holding its breath for the fantasied reshuffle which is destined to show that Madame is in charge. The problem is that the real crap in the cabinet, the sort of politicians who shouldn’t be let out without a carer, tend to be cult Brexiteers. Chris Grayling, Priti Patel and Andrea Loathesome spring to mind. But if you replace them with someone who has once been on a continental holiday there will be howls from the carpet biters. Then we really trip out into Disneyland. Brexiteers are quite happy to throw Boris to the lions in return for the sacking of that traitor, Hammond. Now, I hold no candle for him, in fact my friends who as senior civil servants have worked for him, are of the view that he is a total shit. But cometh the hour cometh the shit. And his hour has come. Good God, not as Prime Minister, but as someone who who can steer us through this toxic swamp. Ah, squeal the carpet biters, blame the Treasury, it’s a plot to keep us in the EU. Well, it is a Treasury plot, but not to keep us in the EU, just to smooth our exit without causing catastrophic damage to the economy. As a well known permanent secretary once said, ‘the Treasury is there to stop politicians doing wicked things’. Clearly they can’t stop them doing stupid things. There aren’t enough hours in the day. Wicked is good enough for me.

So let’s try and share in the cult Brexiteer’s wet dream. Sack Hammond and put in Er, Loathsome, Redwood or James not so Cleverly? They would ignore all the advice the mandarins gave, so much so that their desks would be littered with letters warning the Chancellor of the consequences. And demanding explicit written authority. But if Hammond has to go you do have a safe pair of hands in Michael Fallon. The policies would be similar but he will do it with measured charm. And Madame can trust him. There would be no shame in appointing Bernard Jenkin to Defence. Decent guy, knows his brief and might keep him out of harms way. Of course, dear old Bernard is sensible in everything except Europe.

To be honest I don’t expect too much. Boris probably can’t be made a martyr, but his friends with exception of not so Cleverly and Mad Nad, are in retreat. So I suspect that it will be a tinkering round the ages at Minister of State level. And who gives a damn about them?

So we limp on. Putting off the day of the mercy killing. My heart raced a little when I saw Ruth Davidson say both on Marr and Peston that she wouldn’t rule out Westminster after the Scottish Parliamentary elections in 2021. I fear that it may be too late.

I am rather pleased that I was the first commentator to spot the talents of Gavin Williamson. His demolition of the Coup de Twat has enhanced his reputation as a ruthless fixer. I haven’t a clue whether he will ever become leader. But having a reputation as a Beria in politics, even if it’s overblown, can be tremendous asset. If not the king, he will be the kingmaker.

So we are where we are. Wherever that may be, It’s not a good place. For as my party fixates, plots, panics and finally implodes John McDonnell draws up punishment lists for after the revolution. In a saner political world this would concentrate and unite minds.

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The Tories are a Ruth less party. Here's how we can get her to Number 10

5 Oct 2017 at 07:45

A few weeks ago I wrote about the three stages that result in the fall of a Prime Minister. Anger, ridicule and Pity. I should have added humiliation. The real tragedy of yesterday’s slow motion, white knuckled ride to imminent political oblivion is that none of it was Madame’s fault. It was if the Gods atop Mount Olympus decided to play a few games. It was not her fault that she had a rotten cough, nor that some twat in charge of vetting didn’t, well, vet. Nor that some bellend in charge of scenery hadn’t appreciated that as lettering tends to fall off under heat and strong light you need apply a really strong adhesive. My heart went out to her. It was deeply, deeply uncomfortable viewing. How life can be so cruel. Politics so unforgiving. This will be her footnote in history.

She will, for the time being, get the sympathy vote. But this is only temporary. The two Gavins and Graham Brady, the real power brokers, will be strategising a smooth transition. But to whom? And how? And how do they prevent the party going into meltdown when the freak circus of leadership hopefuls comes to town? And how do they avoid an election and ushering in the most dangerously left wing government that this country has ever seen?

People have been asking for the last few days what the Conservative party is for. I’ll tell you. Winning elections. It has always had an adapt or die ethos. And unless it does the former it will suffer the latter. Sensible party elders have got to knock some sense into the selectorate. Brexit is here. It won’t go away, but it has to be managed. For the benefit of the country. If they pick a leader who is an obsessive, if they refuse to pick a leader because of some strange self destructive cult, then the party is finished. Already the delusionists are at play. Loathesome, Patel and a group of clowns are plotting. There may be resignations. Mercifully Boris has been sidelined. He will never be forgiven for his treachery. And Moggy? A splendid diversion. He has given the party wonder. Like when you see a bear riding a unicycle. The novelty will wear off. Anyhow, this is really his bid for the Speakership.

The party has to be detoxified. Those under the age of forty need to be energised. Have something to cheer. Have someone to believe in. Have a leader they believe can win. They have to be young. They have to be fresh. They have to be a total break from the past and present. Just a future.

The Tories have always been the Ruth less party. And they are. Davidson is our only hope. But it can’t be done, some say. Oh, yes it can. Now I’ll tell you how.

There has to be a secret cabal of the power brokers and May. She knows that every day she remains the chances of a sensible Brexit deal diminishes with the government, like some out of control dodgem car, smashing into everything, with Labour looking like a credible alternative. Davidson must be persuaded to stand in a by election. But where? She is desperately needed in Scotland, so a safe English seat would be unwise. She could be accused of desertion. But David Mundell’s seat, with a majority of 9,400, is the safest Tory seat in Scotland. Shove him in the Lords, but with a place at the power broker’s table. Make Davidson Secretary of State for Scotland. And then, after an election machine has been put in place, May steps down.

Yes,I know, it’s bloody risky. The SNP and Labour would mount a massive campaign in the by election. But the Scots love her. Having her as Prime Minister can only help Scotland. She is a force of nature. Charismatic. A breath of fresh air. Untainted by obsessionism. A bruiser. The only person who can win a term for the Tories. If May secretly agrees to this that may be her alternative footnote in history. Saving the Conservative Party.

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The horror movie IT now has a sequel. It stars Boris as the evil clown. It's called SHIT

16 Sep 2017 at 10:12

Last week I went to the cinema and watched one of the scariest horror movies that I have ever seen. Every few years a clown would terrorise a small town. At first he appears to be cuddly and charming, making promises that everyone wants to hear. But as the story continues we realise that he is an evil entity who will say anything and do anything to lure you into his terrifying lair. Worse, his very existence, his very survival depends on feeding on people’s worst fears. The film is called IT.

This morning I noticed that a sequel has been released by Daily Telegraph productions. It stars Boris as the evil clown. The film is called SHIT.

This dreadful little man will say anything, do anything, promise anything and manipulate our hopes and terrors to seize the keys to Number 10. He feeds on our fears of foreigners. Fear is his life blood, without it he would wither and die.

Poor old Bozo has been out of sorts of late. His creatures have been putting it about that he is frustrated in his role as Foreign Secretary. That he may be centre stage but is only allowed to say the line, ‘dinner is being served.’ There has been talk of him being on the brink of resignation. Worse, he is no longer the darling of the party faithful. They are in love with Ruth Davidson.

If anyone has the stomach to read his thoroughly dishonest Ten Point Plan in the Telegraph this morning you will find the comments by Charles Moore and Tim Stanley the perfect emetic. They guarantee an unpleasant fit of vomiting. Good God Charles and Tim. You are good guys. Intelligent guys. You have respect. Surely you don’t believe this half baked crap?

Well, it appears they do. Moore, ‘is it time to place our future in Boris’s hands and prepare for new leadership.’ Stanley, ‘Boris has laid out an exciting, liberal future for Britain. He must challenge May.’ Or perhaps they are under pressure to write this mindless and dangerous drivel from their paymasters. Look at the Telegraph comment, ‘at last a positive and bold vision for Brexit’.

This isn’t a toe in the water for a leadership battle. He has seriously undermined Davis and Fox. He has re ratted on his downright lie that the NHS will get £350 million a week from Brexit. This is an all out war against May and her government. And there is no going back. He has to resign and challenge her or just resign. His position is disloyal, dishonest and detestable. It will throw the party into meltdown just before the conference. Whatever he does now he will never been forgiven for this. The assassin rarely wins the crown.

And spare us from all from the faux loyalty. These are the first stages of a coup. He has the backing of the Telegraph. This is serious. And planned. There was even a Matt cartoon. It may not have been too helpful. It involved Boris being compared to Kim Wrong ‘Un. Mmm. Two tubby, ruthless crazy guys with bad hair. This might stick.

Well let’s see how he tries to smarm his way out of this one. He either resigns and challenges or just resigns. Number 10 must be robust. Madame should sack him. Let’s see what he is made of. But I think that we know. Flies buzz round it.

So Bozo take your Circus off of May’s lawn and fuck off out of town. Though there is something you can look forward to. There will always be a special place in George Osborne’s freezer just for you.

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