Sunday, October 18, 2009

Biscuit Update!

Following on from yesterday's story that Gordon Brown refused to say what his favourite biscuit was, the Prime Minister himself has Twittered:

"...absolutely anything with a bit of chocolate on it, but trying v hard to cut down."

So that's half an answer at least. Tune in on Wednesday to see if he can chose between a digestive or a cookie.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Brown Takes The Biscuit (Or Not)

It's a silly little story but, as is often the way with the silly and apparently inconsequential stories, it tells us more than we might expect. The Sun reports that:

"Gordon Brown celebrate[d] the Hindu and Sikh festival Diwali at No10 with cakes yesterday - after refusing to name his favourite biscuit. Mums in a live webchat begged the PM to name it - but he would not crumble."

What sort of man can't do this? Chocolate Bourbon; easy, just name the biscuit you like most. But for a man who dithers, who can't make up his mind without opinion polls, and who doesn't like issues where he can't create his precious dividing lines, such a task is near impossible.

Maybe he's waiting for David Cameron to be asked the same question, and is hoping his answer will be a shade on the posh side. Then, no doubt, we'll have Brown pledging £100 million to the Presbyterian Shortbread Foundation.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Union Grumbles Are Pathetic

The BBC's Laura Kuenssberg has just Twittered that the Public and Commercial Services Union say they would strike as a result of George Osborne's public sector pay freeze. Note, first of all, how they didn't threaten to strike yesterday when Alistair Darling announced a pay freeze - albeit one on a smaller scale.

However, the pay freeze is a facade they are hiding behind. The pay freeze will of course affect the income of many of their members, as it will for everyone who works in the public sector. But you only need to spend 30 seconds on the Internet to find out why the PCSU in particular is having a hissy fit. Even Wikipedia notes that "most of its members work in government departments and other public bodies". So the bulk of its members work in the very Whitehall that Osborne has said needs to cut costs by a third, and I'd bet money that a good number work in the Quangos that Ken Clarke said would need to prove their worth or be scrapped.

I am sympathetic to anyone who is feeling the crunch at the moment - and both myself and friends and family are in the same boat. But unions need to grow up about this, and recognise that as the private sector is suffering heavy losses, public sector employees - the number of which continues to grow - cannot be immune from the consequences of the recession.

One Of These People Is Lying

Talking to the Sun - BBC article linked to because of more information - General Sir Richard Dannatt has said that ministers had to be forced "screaming and kicking" to agree to the needs of the armed forces. And indeed that the military had to operate with "at least part of one arm tied behind one's back". This is all part of the story that Gordon Brown refused to sanction an extra 2,000 troops for Afghanistan, against military advice.

Downing Street has said: "Any suggestion that the prime minister has been unwilling to deploy more troops or provide the necessary resources is simply wrong."

Now, either General Dannatt - a man who has fought for better troop conditions, equipment, and pay - is lying. Or our habitual liar of a Prime Minister - whose party tried to smear Dannant - is lying through his spokesman. It's difficult to know who to believe in such circumstances...

Yvette Cooper Doesn't Get Big Numbers

Which is slightly worrying for a Work and Pensions Secretary. Responding to Conservative plans to review the state retirement age, she somehow manages to bring in the Tory inheritance tax pledge:

"They want to hit low paid workers in their late fifties, but they're still backing tax cuts on millionaires' estates. This shows how out of touch David Cameron and George Osborne are."

Listen, you stupid woman. The inheritance tax cut is designed to help everyone who has an estate valued at less than a million pounds. It's not a 'tax cut on millionaires' estates', because it means that the only people paying inheritance tax will be millionaires. Is that really so difficult for you to understand, you Jimmy Clitheroe impersonator from hell?

Update: Prize twat Liam Byrne has also got in on the act, this time also accusing George Osborne of 'talking Britain down'. Byrne is - believe it or not - the chief secretary to the Treasury, so should probably have an even better understanding of how full of bollocks this lie is than Cooper.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Proof Of Labour's Chumpness

Brown's hike to Iraq during the 2007 Conservative conference was, until now, the lowest I thought Labour would go to deflect attention away from a positive Tory conference. However, I now give you this breaking news, which of course wasn't possible to announce during the Labour conference last week:

My hope is that the British people see this for what it is - as indeed they did with Brown's Iraq trip. This is Osborne announcing a NI freeze, and the bunker getting into a panic.

Now It's Bob's Turn

Remember in 2007, when Gordon Brown just had to go to Iraq in the middle of the Tory conference? Well, now Bob Ainsworth has gone on a 'surprise' visit to Afghanistan.

Two things; why can Ainsworth make surprise trips to Afghanistan on the first day of the Tory conference, but just has to go on holiday during the bloodiest month our troops have seen there since the war began?

And secondly, watch the BBC clip in the first linked article. You'll see that during a conversation with a solider who questioned him about troop numbers, Ainsworth tries to squeeze out of the solider a suggestion that they don't need anymore equipment.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

A Question For Bob Ainsworth

I know you're the Cabinet's dunce, but do try to think carefully.

Which of these things is most likely to damage the morale of our armed forces?

A. Asking questions about kit provision and the number of helicopters.
B. Having a Defence Secretary with a Cabinet ranking of 21 out of 23 when we're fighting two wars.
C. Not providing troops with bomb-proof vehicles in a country covered with road bombs.
D. Having a Defence Secretary who is generally seen as the biggest joke since 'Knock Knock...'

Answers to be scribbled in poorly spelled English on the back of a moustache comb, please.