And the difference, I’d venture to suggest, is Mr Cummings, who is, very different.
Do you think that perhaps, as the Brexit thing falls apart and it appears that perhaps we do not hold quite ALL the cards and that the trade deal won’t be done in an afternoon over a cup of tea that the team at No 10 are starting to fall out a bit?
And all for a blue passport which we could have had anyway…
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told the Commons Liaison Committee that he is not certain that an inquiry into the behaviour of his aide Dominic Cummings is a 'good use of official time', saying it is time to 'move on' from the matter pic.twitter.com/iUqYvQyc6C
Well, pathetic excuses are the name of the game for this bunch of cowboys.
Another day of interviews and tv/radio appearances, each one direr than the last.
Gove was asked about self-assessing eye health and specifically, had he ever driven 60 miles to check that his eyesight was good enough to drive 250 miles. He started to say he had and then realised halfway through how utterly ridiculous that was and tried various and sundry other tacks till the interviewer put him out of his misery. But he was hauled over the coals several times over it.
I’m wondering what Cummings has on all of them that is strong enough, that they are scared enough about that they are prepared to make utter fools of themselves over it.
Another minister (Hancock) said that it was possible that those people who were fined for being out and about on childcare matters during the lockdown in England might have to have their fines returned to them because, presumably, it wasn’t illegal to be out and about for childcare purposes… But then Downing Street rejected Hancock’s suggestion! There’s an article here, but fair warning, it’s in the Daily Mail.
I wonder who it was that did the vetoing!!!
In Scotland, Douglas Ross resigned from the non-job of Under Secretary of State on the basis that he could not support Cummings, given that so many of his constituents had had similar kinds of problems and not broken the law. When Downing Street was asked for a comment on the ministerial resignation, a “source” said in that diplomatic way that we have come to expect of the British government, that Ross was “a nobody”.
I wonder who that source was!!!
One of the interesting things I thought of today was… who will replace Mr Ross? Suggestions on a postcard to Munguin.
How long will this go on? What will the government find that can distract the press, even the friendly press from this? They can’t have a royal wedding. It would mean people coming from all over. They can’t have a royal birth…even royals take time to manage that. A war is probably out of the question and we don’t have earthquakes of any size in the UK.
I guess they could ask Phil to make the ultimate sacrifice, but why should he? He’s half Greek and half Danish.
For today’s spirit lifter, Brenda sent me this. It seems that Dom’s Castle has been getting a lot of attention on Trip Advisor.
The result in the Westminster election in December last year was:
Liberal Democrat: 4
The composition of the Scottish Affairs Select Committee is as follows:
Liberal Democrat: 2
And some of them aren’t even Scottish MPs!
Given that EVEL (English Votes for English Laws) exists in the Commons, which is, I suppose, under the bizarre system where the UK parliament doubles as the English parliament, reasonable… how can it be that the distribution of committee seats differs so dramatically from the results of the votes of the Scottish people? And is there a reason that English MPs sit on the committee discussing Scottish Affairs?
Do they think, perhaps, that Scots need some sensible, properly educated English MPs to make sure that the Jocks don’t go wild, have a cèilidh, get drunk and chop their fingers off sharpening their pencils?
Oh, and just a quick question for those Munguinites who live in Scotland.
Dominic Cummings has arranged to purchase the rights to a smartphone app which, they say, will make contact tracing easy. It’s from a company owned by the brother of some mate of his who was involved in the Vote Leave campaign and, I read somewhere, cost us £25 million.
Gove wanted to try it out on some Scottish islands, but perhaps the response he got on social media made Hancock decide to try it out on the Isle of Wight.
Jacob Rees 17th Century, who, let’s be honest, you would have thought unlikely to have even heard of smartphones or apps, has said that the UK must do this as one. Presumably he has an image in his head of heralds riding out on white steeds across the shires in search of people infected by the plague and eventually making their way to the rough and wildlands in North Britain.
As the borders between the three mainland countries remain open (although Welsh police have turned away English holidaymakers at the border), I can see his point. And tracing has been a part of the more successful European and Asian countries’ tactics for dealing with the virus
On the other hand, I don’t trust Dominic Cummings’ app any more than I would trust Dominic Cummings himself. Not in a million years.
What do you think? If it works on the Isle of Wight, will you download it?
Boris Johnson addressing the nation last month: “I want everybody to know there are no circumstances in which I will ask Brussels to delay. We Are leaving on the 31st October, no ifs or buts.” pic.twitter.com/ulosCA9Bmx
So, if there is no Conservative Party left on November 1, why are they so keen to have a General Election in December?
I mean, if the Tories cease to exist, The Brexit party and Labour will carve up England between them (well OK, the LibDems may pick up a few seats too even if their leader sounds like she comes from South Africa! (I mean what IS that accent?)
Also, Boris Johnson, intellect and breadth… in one sentence? Surely not.
Dominic, on the side of the downtrodden workers, swamped with nasty foreign regulations and court judgments and done out of employment by EU workers. Just as well we voted for him, eh?
Now updated with new bonus footage! Since becoming leader of Scottish Labour in November last year, here's all the times Richard Leonard has been asked by Nicola Sturgeon at #FMQs to back more powers being devolved to the Scottish Parliament: pic.twitter.com/p8qh9XBaDI
Well, Richard, what do you reckon? Will you call for these things to be devolved?
Then, if it went wrong, you could reasonably blame the Scottish government. As it is the shortcomings are firmly in the court of your beloved Tory UK. And honestly, even with the world’s second most chaotic government, Labout is still a country mile behind Boris “the ditch” Johnson.
For those on Twitter, give Sarah a follow. Great posts.
Ooooops! As Mr Grayson would have it… Shut that door!
Now, I’m no apologist for Corbyn, but it’s a bit of a cheek that the Tory Daily Mail on Sunday highlights a bloke taking 40 winks on a L-O-N-G train journey from England to Scotland. Especially when their own snooze on the front benches while he should be listening to a debate.
I hear Gove has been ranting at Corbyn about how much money the Tories have spent on the NHS. However much it is, the English NHS is short of 10,000 doctors and over 40,000 nurses, so it’s not enough.
As predicted after we heard that the Rt Hon Colonel had transferred her favours to Gove, Hunt will be the other contestant in the finals of the amateur league tiddlywinks competition currently happening in London.
Gove got 75 MPs – just two votes short of Hunt’s 77.
Mr Johnson, considered the favourite in the race, was backed by 160 Conservative MPs, so more than half.
So presumably our Ruth will offer her vote to Jeremy. Which means of course that Boris will be tiddlywink champion for the next 6 months. But fear ye not, Ruthie will simply change allegiance as she thinks fit in order to best serve her ambitions.
Maybe if you were the prime minister, Mikey, you could get a better camera, and just a wee word of advice…maybe don’t do the taping in a sauna next time.
Boris, it seems, dislikes Scots as much as Scots regard him with suspicion. Although using Gordon “North British” Brown as an example was an unfortunate choice.
And Rory the Tory has promised to set up a Department for the Union, with its secretary of state being his deputy, the First Secretary, no less!
Apparently, it will deal with all the “regions” and have a multi-billion pound budget… and, of course, it will bring us all together again after Brexit.
Oh, you have to laugh, but then Munguin has more of a chance of becoming prime minister than he does so I reckon we can dismiss that idea.
Hmmm. There might have been a more tactful way to put this. I mean it does sound, at first read, like an instruction. Do it and do it now!
With the lowest pension in the developed world, pensioners choosing between heating and eating and being about to be hit with a bill of £155 a year in a tv tax, your lot are hardly showing willing, and given that, until recently it was your area of responsibility in England, I have VERY little confidence in your ability to manage it.
As usual, Britain completely neglected to plan for the future. In this case for a surge in people ageing… It’s almost as if they hadn’t had 70+ years’ notice that that was going to happen.
And, does that include standing up before running away with all the EU money which was intended for Scottish farmers, and depositing it in the bank accounts of English Farmers?
Still, that probably IS working for Scotland in your book.
And why do all you people keep on talking about “our” United Kingdom? It’s about as united as an undone jigsaw that’s lost 50% of its pieces. Has some focus group told you that if you repeat it over and over, this unity will eventually percolate into our thick “ordinary people” heads?
Because, a bit like standing with your legs open to make you look powerful, it doesn’t work. (Actually, that makes you look like you wet your pants!)
Seriously, it either gets on our nerves or makes us laugh like drains.
In the aftermath of Brexit, the country is divided as never before… and I can’t see that using the phrase “our united kingdom” (or the other one we hear ad nauseam, “our precious union”) is going to change any of that.
The Tories are divided; Labour is divided; young and old are divided; the countries of the union are divided. Almost everything about this godforsaken place is divided, and you using stupid phrases at every turn only makes it worse.
Give it up.
"With Michael Gove as prime minister, we'd go to war with at least three countries at once". Remember Ken Clarke's 'hot mic' moment on @SkyNews? pic.twitter.com/SAEwPkYXey
Of course, the real jokes of this week are undoubtedly the contenders, possible and impossible, for the Tory Party leadership. As they work hard to outbid each other on the “I did drugs. What can I say? I’m actually human, just like you ordinary run-of-the-mill lower and lesser folk”, something interesting has come to light.
The process for a visa for visiting the USA includes questions about drug use. Wee Govey’s recent admission with regard to the use of cocaine, could put him in breach of rules, which require applicants to state if they have ever violated laws related to possessing, using or distributing illegal drugs.
We may reasonably assume that on previous applications for USA visas, he will have lied about his drug use. And so he could conceivably be refused a visa to enter the USA.
Of course, if he were elected prime minister, that wouldn’t happen, which would also be an embarrassment in its own way because it would prove that there is one rule for those and such as those and one rule for… well, us.
But given that Gove is not the only one to admit to drug use, the UK could well end up with a prime minister who wouldn’t be able to visit their greatest ally. Donny!
Of course, the admission from the house elf is all the more embarrassing because, as English Education Secretary, Gove brought in legislation that allowed for the disqualification (and sacking) of teachers who were convicted of possessing class A drugs…all the while knowing that his wee nose was no stranger to these substances.
To be fair, school teachers are not prime ministers and vice versa! But still, maybe he needs to rethink his career plans.
As Michael Gove brought in a code of conduct in 2014 disqualifying teachers convicted of possessing class A drugs (yep, cocaine is in there), I think it only fair if he disqualifies himself from any public position. I mean we wouldn’t want him to be hypocritical now, would we?
So, in view of the opium smoking and cocaine use, not to mention the loathsome smoking of pot, it appears that all we are left with is this joke, I mean bloke…
14 years ago, I trekked to the North Pole. Fueled by 5 meals a day, I went on to play the most northernly game of cricket. pic.twitter.com/FxliAiLTcc
A clip has surfaced from 1992. In it the environment secretary and Tory leadership hopeful Michael Gove mocks the Scots, suggesting they're beggars and "unattractive creatures" pic.twitter.com/sRcwy4miE1
I dunno about him being a “beggar” (although a cheeky beggar maybe) but he is, without doubt, an exceedingly “unattractive creature”.
All that said, is there a Tory leadership candidate who is not? Lord knows, in the unprepossessing and incompetent stakes, May is a hard person to beat.
I’d be interested to know which of the many candidates Munguinites fancy as the next UK prime minister and why.
Does anyone know if David Mundell was invited to the banquet at Buckingham Palace?
I see no mention of it on the Scotland Office Website. It would be, you’d have thought, the kind of thing that Mundell would brag about while making the most of the fact that no one from the SNP was there. But I suppose that the queen has enough tea boys without inviting him.
And as Davidson has also been exceedingly quiet over the last few days, can I assume that she was not invited either?
I’ve recently read suggestions that Mrs May was always a Leaver.
However, as the Home Secretary in a government which stood for Remain, and given that it seemed unlikely that Leave would win, during the referendum campaign of 2016, she pretty much sat on the fence, making occasional, and rather reluctant, statements supporting the government’s Remain line.
Given that politicians rarely do anything actually totally principled, this line was presumably adopted in order that she could be seen as a contender for leadership when Remain won and Cameron eventually stood down in a UK which would still be inside the EU.
Aye, well, the best-laid plans o’ mice and men… and politicians, eh?
Leave won and Cameron, although he said he wouldn’t do, resigned the prime ministership, and then a few days later, although he said he wouldn’t do, he resigned his seat, bought his £25,000 shed and disappeared in disgrace, into obscurity (hopefully forever).
So then a rag-tag of ridiculously inappropriate and underqualified people stood for the leadership and so, by default, the job of prime minister. She had to join them; this would be her last chance. Although she must have known that it was a thankless task.
Jeremy Corbyn notwithstanding, it was relatively unlikely that a Conservative party that had taken a Britain divided every which way could form a government once it was over and done. And who could guarantee that Corbyn wouldn’t be replaced by someone electable?
Anyone in the Conservative Party with even the slightest potential to be a ‘leader’ swerved what was going to be the job from hell. They say every political career ends in ignominy, but this one was going to be a bobby dazzler of an end. And so the line up was a load of also-rans. Particularly unfortunate when it could be argued that REAL leadership was needed in 2016 more than any time in the last 70 years.
Fox, the already disgraced ex-minister, ex- leadership candidate, ex doctor, with a history of outrageous expenses claims and a relationship with Adam Werrity which saw him give his unvetted young friend access to the MoD and highly confidential meetings at home and abroad, managed 16 votes).
Crabbe, the hard-right Christian, anti-gay, who thought it appropriate to vote to reduce benefits for disabled people by £30 a week and who resigned his cabinet post after it was discovered that his Christian beliefs and marriage did not preclude his engaging in “inappropriate” texting to a young woman. (He later repeated this behaviour as a backbencher and so it wasn’t a one-off aberration.) Also, in the expenses scandal, it could be said that he used the system to maximum effect, spending our money to do up a place he went on to sell shortly thereafter, and transferring his second home allowance to his first home. He managed a whole 34 votes. Not as embarrassing as Foxy, but close!
Gove, the idiots’ idiot. Or maybe he’s just Sarah Vine’s idiot? He’s more a figure of fun than anything else, from his strange vocal delivery and mannerisms to his never-failing ability to put his foot in it. He too is a committed Christain, so committed in fact that he gave a copy of the King James bible to every school in England and Wales when he was their secretary of state for Education. His first act in government was to announce and publish a list of cost-cutting measures including stopping school building projects. Unfortunately when he announced this in the Commons with a flourish, it was still a work in progress and Govey ended up with egg on his face. To try to avoid personal criticism, he blamed the snafu on his Civil Servants! Good start to a ministerial career. In addidtion, he too had some rather dubious expenses, some of which he paid back. For all that he racked up 46 votes.
Leadsom the fox hunter, was the candidate that you would have said was from the left field if she hadn’t been so right wing. I’d never heard of her, and when I heard her speak I felt I could understand why. To call her unimpressive would have been massively overrating her and a bit of an insult to the word “overrated”. She too, of course, had some skeletons in her cupboard including donations from a brother-in-law in Guernsey, which is abroad. She was accused of beefing up her pre-political CV full of senior jobs in finance. And not without reason. It was said that when she was “City Minister” she was “seen by departmental officials as “a disaster”, “the worst minister we ever had. … She found it difficult to understand issues or take decisions. She was monomaniacal, seeing the EU as the source of every problem. She alienated officials by continually complaining about poor drafting.” In other words, she excused her thickness by blaming it on officials. Again, a seriously bad move. And everything from the cost of champagne to Britain losing the Eurovision was the fault of Brussels! She managed to upset a lot of people by pointing out that May would be an inappropriate Prime Minister because she didn’t have any children. (Just imagine if a man had said that!) For all that she managed 84 votes on the second ballot and then withdrew before the members’ ballot leaving May the winner. (I have the distinction of being blocked by her on Twitter! It’s a bit like an OBE, but better.)
May herself was, as I said, a useless candidate. She had a reputation for being anti-immigration, anti-foreigner and for being intransigent, unlikely to take advice from anyone but her husband and, as Ken Clarke said, “a bloody awkward woman”. As Home Secretary, she was responsible for a multitude of measures to make life more difficult for people from outwith the UK. Many of which had consequences that even a robotic operator like her should have been able to see. Making employers and landlords responsible for checking immigration status was bound to lead to anyone who looked even slightly foreign being refused accommodation or work. The “go home” vans and the destruction of Windrush papers were the tip of the iceberg. And that’s before you start on other matters like the ‘mess’ she made of the sex abuse scandal. The shredding machines in the Home Office must have worked overtime on her watch.
She had told people (specifically her friend, Damien Greene, of the ‘porn at work’ scandal) when she was “up” at Oxford, that she wanted to be Prime Minister. Margaret Hilda was, at that time destroying the fabric of the country from her grace and favour in Downing Street, and it seems that May wanted to follow in her footsteps. (I mean did you hear the drivel on the steps of Downing Street? St Francis eat your heart out!)
Everything about May points to her being anti-European. And the way that she has embraced the hard right ERG group and the DUP suggests that that is where her sympathies lie. Surely it didn’t escape her (or advisors’) notice that the Irish situation was fraught enough without her going into an expensive de facto coalition with an extreme BritNationalist party filled with a visceral hatred of “Catholic” Europe and with blood-red lines to prove it.
She has refused to work with Scotland and the majority in Northern Ireland to try to work out any kind of compromise, although it is clear from the Danish experience, that that could have been a possibility, and she seems to have no rapport at all with the more moderate members of her own party like Grieve, Soubry, Clarke and Heseltine, whom she actually sacked.
She seems to have made no effort to soften the deal in any way and she has insisted that the bad deal that she made is the only deal and may be heading for failure in these last three weeks before we leave. She’s shown no inclination to investigate the allegations of corruption and dark money allegedly associated with Leave Campaign and has insisted from day one that the tiny majority was the will of the British people.