Politicans and world leaders making news and in the news, and spouting hot air
Hain has used Adelaine Hain as a part-time secretary for 16 years.
The Telegraph reports that more than 170 MPs – one in four – employ family members.
Indeed, more power to them. The money saved on advertising positions vacant and interviewing candidates must save the public purse a not inconsiderable sum.
Anroak recommends this policy being developed and candidate MPs required to have at least one member of the family with decent shorthand, a sound telephone manner and their own pen…
Owen Paterson, the shadow secretary of state for Northern Ireland whose wife Rose is paid almost £30,000 year to work for him, said: “If you can find me a Cambridge graduate who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of my constituency, who is willing to work long and anti-social hours at very short notice for that sort of salary then good luck. Until then, my wife is the best person for the job.”
It’s the Sunday’s Express’ front-page news, and the headline of the year.
“Tory peer Lord Tebbit wants to tackle Britain’s gun culture by teaching boys how to shoot.”
Isn’t it time we brought back National Service, let the lads take the Empire shooting test, perhaps at each other?
Little changes about Norman Tebbit. A picture proves Tebbit to look very much as he did in the pomp, all skin, hollowed cheeks and pied dog hair.
One thing that has altered is that Tebbit plan provides for free bullets, based on hand-outs not earnings, a reversal on the former Conservative Party chairman’s traditional position.
“Kids should go out on shoots. It gives them a sense of excitement and kids, particularly young boys, have a need for a degree of violence.
“It is much better than playing a ghastly computer game. To have them struggling through the brambles, seeing people shoot is much more in the interest of the kids.
“Boys would soon find themselves in a man’s world and having to obey instructions.”
It’s an idea. But there is a suspicion that the strategy is a ruse to cull the hoodies and reduce the country’s Asbo mountain.
Look out for jousting-style tournaments, in which lads get on their bikes and cycle towards each other with guns blazing…
“HUSBAND of MP probed by police over f-word phone rant,” notes the Mail.
The celebrity polce force was called in after a local councillor complained about a call from Tony McCarthy, husband to Portsmouth North MP Sarah McCarthy-Fry, who happens to be a senior parliamentary aide to Labour Chief Whip Geoff Hoon.
Says the paper: “He was furious after they jokingly discussed her actions during a protest march when she helped drag a dead Christmas tree through the streets of the city.” What to joke about there? She was making a valid point about who hard it is to drag a dead Christmas tree through the streets. Blessed are the dead Christmas tree draggers.
McCarthy told Councillor Fazackarley:
“I do not suppose you will give me a ring back because you are an odious little b*****d . . . You don’t have the bottle to ring me back, do you, because you are a real little t****r. Why don’t you join the f*****g Tories, you odious little t****r.”
Says Mr Fazackarley: “I was shocked that someone I have known for 15 years should use such language. You don’t expect the husband of an MP to ring you up in the early hours effing and blinding.”
Indeed, usually you leave that kind of thing to the MPs themselves, or to someone speaking to a call centre…
CNN to Senators Clinton and Obama: “People all over the country are saying if you got together it would be a Dream Ticket”.
Senator Obama: “I was a friend of Senator Clinton before the nomination race began and I will be a friend of Senator Clinton’s after the nomination race is over”.
Senator Clinton: “The Republicans are more-of-the-same, we represent change. You can tell that just by looking at us”.
Change is a woman and black man. Everything else is pretty much the same…
Feel the electricity. Feel the change…
Or is it static?Spotter: Althouse
SAYS Hillary Clinton: “It took a Clinton to clean after the first Bush and I think it might take another one to clean up after the second Bush.”
(I’ve re-read the headline and it contains a whiff of unpleasantness. Anyone read Fishing For Boys?)
TOM Cruise And Hillary Clinton are the dream ticket:
MIKE Huckabee has been to San Francisco. He says:
“The beauty of America is that a person can come and even make a disruption, and you know what, that person is not going to be taken out and shot.”
Aim high, America. Better yet, aim at the moose…
It is of “BORIS THE SMIRKER”.
A woolly hat pulled over his haystack hair, the Tory candidate for London mayor is walking in the city in the company of two men. Johnson has his left hand stuffed in his outside jacket poket.
The two men are each reaching with their right hands inside their left inside coat pockets.
If this were America, we might suppose Johnson was about to be offed. Insterad he smirks, perhaps waiting to be presented with a huge bunch of cotton flowers, a white rabbit or Paul Daniels.
The story, and one is hardly needed, is that Johnson “refuses to apologise for failing to declare £234,000 of campaign donations”. These were not made by him, rather to him.
Johnson says he was told he did not have to register the money. He may be right. The Mirror does not say.
What we do learn is that it’s all desperately unfair, particularly in light of how Peter Hain was hounded from his job as Work And Pensions minister over undeclared funds.
“TRICKY TORY,” says the Mirror. “Shazzamm!” say the paper’s reporters.
BILL Clinton says that to combat global warming industrialized nations need to: “We just have to slow down our economy and cut back our greenhouse gas emissions ’cause we have to save the planet for our grandchildren.”
This appears an odd thing to say, with the US worried about recession. (Video here.)
But, then, if there is a recession, President Hillary Clinton can blame it on global warming. Recession will be a good thing.
Right? Right on!
Surely, much depends on how close you are to the heat? And if you place the patio heater indoors, does it still qualify as a patio heater or is it more of a radiator, or a death trap?
The Telegraph says the proposal has been attacked by publicans, who say bars and pubs need the heaters for customers driven outside by smoking bans. Readers learn that the trade has invested £86.5 million in heaters over the past year and “a ban could cost pubs, cafés and restaurants an estimated £250 million a year in lost business”. Not to mention what it would do to the market in new patio heaters.
To give balance to Hall’s argument the paper calls upon Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party. Says he: “Not content with devastating the pub trade with the illiberal and ill-informed smoking ban, these autocratic busybodies now want to make smokers stand in the cold and the rain.
“We are constantly being told that the continental café culture is something to aspire to. But a ban like this will hammer the cafés of Brussels, Stockholm and Copenhagen just as surely as the pubs of Leeds and Sevenoaks.”
Is Farage saying that Leeds and Sevenoaks have much in common with those European capital cities, so creating a united European view of the matter? Or is it just all a slight on Brussels to bracket the seat of European power with a town in Kent? And do the people of Sevenoaks mind?
Let’s have a heater debate…
It is “ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE RACE FOR THE WHITEHOUSE”.
The Indy is too modest. This is more than you or anyone needs to know.
The poster unfurls to reveal that John Edwards and Rudy Giuliani are “CONTENDERS FOR THE WHITE HOUSE”.
Both men have, as all papers and news wires report, now retired from the race.
The Independent seems unlucky. But it has been here before. With the result of the New Hampshire primary still unknown, its front page featured a picture of Barack Obama and the legend: “IOWA… NEW HAMPSHIRE…AMERICA?”
The answer was: “YES…NO….MAYBE.”
IS Al Gore in Israel?
“A rare snowstorm swept the Middle East on Wednesday, blanketing parts of the Holy Land in white, shutting schools and sending excited children into the streets for snowball fights…
Men in long Arab robes pelted each other with snowballs in the Jordanian capital, Amman, and the West Bank city of Ramallah, seat of the Palestinian government, came to a standstill.
Reports of Al Gore moving in to Syria are as yet unconfirmed…
THIS is, as it is claimed, the scan of an internal document of the Identity and Passport Service. It’s about the plans for the UK’s identity card scheme…
TORY MP Derek Conway has been upbraided for using taxpayer-funded expenses to pay his teenage son almost £50,000 as a “researcher” – “even though there is no evidence of any work having been done.”
It emerged that Derek Conway had also employed his eldest son, Henry, as a researcher while he attended Cambridge
Mr Conway’s son, Frederick stopped “working” for his father last August after the scandal became public and is now understood to be studying at Sandhurst military academy.
It also emerged yesterday that Mr Conway used to employ his elder son, Henry, as a researcher while he was at Cambridge.
Henry was also paid £10,000 a year between July 2001 and October 2004. It was reported that he earned £32,000 over that period.
Frederick who at the time was a geography student at Newcastle University, was paid up to £11,773 a year, plus bonuses, for almost three years. In total, he received a gross salary of £45,163 plus pension contributions worth another £4,500.
Geography students: Discuss…
YESTERDAY’S news that McDonalds’ is to offer its own qualifications “equal to GCSEs”, occupies the Guardian’s leader writer.
“The fear that education would fall prey to the profiteers emerged yesterday after it was announced that authority to award A-level-style qualifications was being given to three firms: the airline Flybe, Network Rail and, most iconically, McDonald’s. If McQualifications were to displace traditional study, that would surely do for erudition what fast food has done for the diet.”
The Guardian is like that American teacher who gives their failing students an F-grade and an McDonald’s application form. This will inspire them to become more academic, not just give up and get a McJob.
And then this: Gordon Brown yesterday warned of the dire fate that would befall Britain if it failed to close its skills gap…The response is a mixed one, Mr Brown proposes heavy-handed welfare reforms along with welcome expansion in public sector apprenticeships. His plans are far from perfect, but it is to be hoped they will do the trick, because, for all yesterday’s McFlurry of publicity, McQualifications will not be enough.”
So, you can learn from the state – good – but learning from a hugely successful private enterprise is bad? And how do you get the money to fund State-run apprenticeships?
He replaces Richard Caborn in the job, that sports nut who in a 2001 radio spot failed to answer a single one of five quiz sports questions put to him.
Mr Sutcliffe will make a better fist of it. He’s a real sports fan. He’s a football fan. On the subject of ticket prices, he tells us: “But if you look at the example of my own club, Bradford City, who nearly went out of existence, they’re still suffering.
“Bradford City have kept the same ticket prices whereas my other club, Man United, have put up their season tickets by 13% and made people pay for Carling Cup and European games.”
That’s right, Mr Sutcliff has two clubs. He is Gerry ‘Two Clubs’ Sutcliffe.
Of course, some football fans may think one team is enough and anyone with an allegiance to two clubs is an opportunist who understands football about as well as, well, a sports minister…
WILIAM Hague MP.
For Americans looking in, this is how British politics can work:
Her reply: “I am engaged … to Barack Obama. My heart belongs to Barack, and that is who I am currently, finally, engaged to. Yes.”
That’s right – a white woman endorses Obama!
As they say: Barack Obama’s race problem is the white Liberals
“Cam-ikaze,” says the paper.
A pedestrian is angered enough to call the Daily Mirror and tell them all about it.
Cameron’s response to the matter was, apparently to say: “Well, I haven’t collided with anyone have I?”
But it is the pedestrian’s response that stands out. The Mirror hears him yell at the Tory leader: “Doesn’t the Road Traffic Act apply to you?”
These are the words of a pedant. Does anyone know the rules of the Road Traffic Act? Cameron appears wise not to have engaged the pedestrian in a debate on the Act and all its section and clauses.
And this is wise not least of all because if the pedestrian doesn’t get out the way sharpish he may well be run down by Mr Cameron’s car, the one carrying his briefcase…
SAYS Bono, pictured with Al Gore at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland: “The G8 are not making good largely on their commitments. About half, I would say, is where we’ve got – and this is a scandal.”
“We’ve.” Bono is Mr G9, the Pope’s warm-up man. Bono is the man with whom all the leaders of the world’s wealthiest lands consult on matters of global importance.
It is to be hoped that in sitting alongside Paul ‘Bono’ Hewson, Al ‘Pro Bono’ Gore can gain some credibility…
Kerviel is “LE ROGUE TRADER, the Independent’s front-page news.
“The world of high finance, already shaken by the imprudent greed of some of its biggest corporate names, is stunned by the largest ever fraud by an individual ‘rogue’ trader.”
Might this be a good day to bury bad news?
SYLVESTER Stallone says vote for John McCain.
As Ms Althouse notes, Huckabee’s got Chuck Norris. And now, McCain has Stallone.
Somebody needs a Schwarzenegger! Wait! Who’s that on the phone?!
AS noted: Hain Day is also the day Mandelson resigned in 2001. And, oddly enough, when Leon Brittan resigned in 1986, so maybe 2008 will see another ministerial scalp, on the basis of a closing of seven years in the gap between resignations.
And the day Caligula was assassinated.