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    Tuesday, 28 April 2009

    Some more fun - for those with much work and no motivation

    Ah yes, put down your pens, relinquish your hold on the mouse, it's not like you were really doing much anyway - any distraction is a welcome distraction right?

    There is much fun to be had in the form of Google Similar Image search.
    Now it's not perfect, and you do have to pick your picture, but there is some fun to be had, and some insight to be gained. Above all there are some gems, so who do our illustrious political leaders resemble?

    David Cameron is apparently like Piers Morgan and Simon Cowell - smooth, popular, white teeth... says it all really!

    Gordon Brown is like Fidel Castro, George Bush, Tony Blair, John Prescott and numerous domestic animals - no 'side of the road' flattened animals though, so not all that realistic.

    Harriet Harman is like a whole page of random men - well, equality and all.

    David Miliband resembles Brad Pitt and David Beckham - and I'd been telling everyone he was attractive; no one believed me. He supports Arsenal, the comparison is definitely there - it probably falls apart at the point where it comes to stringing a sentence together though.

    I promise you can waste hours! Then once that has been exhausted, there are many pictures of 'Boden-man' Cameron on the beach to provide further entertainment.

    We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to carry on leading this great country of ours... do we?

    There is now another support Brown petition on the No. 10 site, this one with 50 signatures...
    50? Not bad...
    Well actually, it is.
    They range from the serious (the person who created it

    To the plotting:
    Ed Balls, Chancellor in waiting
    Robert Mugabe
    Tony B Liar
    Jeremy Clarkson
    Alistair Darling (instructed by Winky)

    To the clever:
    Juan Idescottishgit
    L X Shun Nao
    Thai Mtugo

    To the funny: (well they're all quite funny)
    EightyEight P Bathplug
    Tractor production is UP! I tell you
    It started in America
    Boom AND Bust
    Polly Toynbee von Tuscany

    To the downright rude:
    fat unelected lying hoon
    W Inky McFukcnut (sic)
    James Gordon Brown is an amoral f**king sewer rat the worthless c**t.

    The stars are my polite addition - it seems that youtube isn't the only source of abuse - how long before this petition is taken down? Place your bets!

    While you're at it, SIGN the petition. Now number 5. I obviously did not spend my friday night emailing it to all the newspapers I could think of...

    UPDATE: Thinking about it, I thought No.10 vetted and monitored these things - are they trying to tell Gordon something?

    UPDATE II: It would seem that there has been some attempt to 'cleanse' the signatories for most of those that were there this morning are there no longer. The attempt fails as they have just been replaced by more abuse.
    This arguably sends a stronger message than the petition calling for Brown's resignation. As one signatory's name says, do you think you'll manage to get 10 REAL signatures?
    I'm not holding my breath.

    UPDATE III (Wednesday pm.) It's been purged again, down to a measly 14 signatures.

    Friday, 24 April 2009

    Time for Gordon to go - sign the petition!

    Sign the petition, spread the word.

    UPDATE - It's reached the no. 1 spot!

    Thursday, 23 April 2009

    Expenses reform? Make a difference today

    This is a screenshot from the excellent blog of Labour MP Tom Harris.
    Oh, what's that advert for? Surely not John Lewis!? The John Lewis of John Lewis List fame?
    Now I know that precisely what adverts appear in those ad boxes is beyond the blogger's control but on a day where the expenses reform row rumbles on, it is rather ironic!
    The actual slogan of the ad is also laced with irony.
    'Make a difference today' is why many MPs become MPs, and it is this that has been tarnished by the long-running expenses row.
    It's time our representatives made a truly bold difference today. The old system stinks. Gordon Brown's new system stinks. The expenses system needs bold and firm reform before the reputation of Parliament and our MPs is beyond repair.
    Government departments such as the MOD already have a 'second home' system that works.
    There should be a criterion for travel distance (either miles or hours by public transport). If you live beyond the set distance you qualify for a second property. All properties are rented within a certain price band. Rent and the cost of utilities are paid for. The rest is up to the MP.
    Those MPs with grace and favour properties would not qualify. Travel expenses to and from constituencies could be claimed with receipts along with staff costs etc.
    The basic salary would cover work (which, surprisingly enough, includes actually turning up).
    Come on. This is not difficult. Make a difference for us and yourselves.

    Wednesday, 22 April 2009

    The 'DaveVinci' Code - a Budget 2009 special!

    This is Cameron's response to the budget in picture form.

    Play 'spot the phrase' by linking adjacent words! What was really in the budget? Only Dave can find out... *dramatic music*

    (I'm not actually intentionally starting some DaveVinci code thingy! *disclaimer*)

    'Every scheme now announced' is a good one! As is 'red chancellor' and 'tax something'.

    Image from

    Tuesday, 21 April 2009

    Guido has unearthed a real gem - an internal Labour Party briefing document on 'New Media' strategy.

    My particular favourite is the following line:

    "We also need to ensure Ministers are featured on online forums, such as Mumsnet, money supermarket, Treehuggers etc. Both as featured visitors and regular contributors."

    The second one is a particularly good idea *sarcasm*. Money supermarket could add a 'Minister comparison' section to their site. Rated according to expenses, policy, column inches, likability., e-acountability, it would be an instant hit!

    You can imagine Obama on Mumsnet, you can imagine Obama going down well on Mumsnet, you can imagine the press being generally warm to the idea of Obama on Mumsnet.

    I'm not entirely sure the same could be said about any Minister...

    Ed Balls on Mumsnet? Jacqui Smith? I somehow think not.

    Tuesday, 14 April 2009

    'Sweet tooth' or something more sinister?

    Doing the 'lunchtime Politics Home' when a headline caught my eye:

    "Terror plot cops find 'bomb part'"

    'Intriguing', I thought, clicking on the link to the Sun page.

    What could this 'bomb part' be?  Gas canisters, nitroglycerine, nails?

    Detonators, semtex, fertiliser?


    There appears to be all of about a dozen sachets...

    Thursday, 2 April 2009

    Call a doctor! Obama-itus infects Westminster

    I’m surprised the PM found a spare half hour for PMQs. I was expecting a repeat of last week - Harperson with a script deliberately designed to be as dull as possible (a Civil Service special). I’d even brought a book just in case. Alas, the PM was not going to miss a chance to sell his super world saving plan. Again. Unfortunately, however, the country is suffering from ‘global’ tinnitus. Nevertheless off we went: Obama, Medvedev, Singh, Aso, ‘The President of China’ (does he not have a name?). No mention of Subversive Sarko ‘n’ Merk I see. When Tory MP Edward Garnier had the audacity to mention domestic issues, the PM jibed that he had “risen to the occasion today”. I assume he was being sarcastic. It’s hard to tell these days, the image police have purged his voice of any personality.

    Hepburn wanted to know about the unfortunate people suffering from asbestosis, “negligently poisoned in the workplace”. I was curious too, for it seems that the problem is widespread. Gordy remarked that asbestosis was a “terrible disease”. What terrible disease has infected the Cabinet? Smith looked ill, not helped greatly by the chosen shade of puce green. Alan Johnson didn’t look much better and even Ed Balls was missing his usual deranged grin. A case of ‘Poll-itus’ perhaps? In Smith’s case it can only be ‘XXX-itus’, a.k.a. ‘career end-itus’.

    Dave made a similar diagnosis. ‘Expenses-itus’, common name: ‘caught with a hand in the till’. There were groans of agony from MPs but Dave was not dishing out sympathy or lollies. “MPs may groan but frankly I’m fed up with out politics being driven through the mud”. I think mud is quite a polite way of putting it. A euphemism for something else found in abundance in the countryside, and Westminster for that matter. Dave wanted it sorted out “once and for all”.

    Gordy claimed he’d been calling for it for ages. That will be similar to that tighter regulation presumably? Balls was having hallucinations, doing his best Gordon Brown impression (and it is good, he is a mini-Brown, just less Scottish). Darling too was now infected. He sat utterly still with an expression of imminent vomiting whilst Gordon went on about some review or other. Perhaps the Cabinet are suffering from meaningless announcement-itus? Maybe it is a bad case of review-itus?

    Dave certainly seemed to think so. “I think the problem is that we do not need another review”, he said with a tone of slight amusement. “The public are sick and tired of this situation.” Gordy grinned manically. It’s not the only situation we are sick and tired of. The Cabinet are certainly sick; I’m certainly tired. Darling looked so awful I thought we might need a delegation of buckets. Perhaps someone should call a doctor?

    Gordy went on about Committees and reviews again. Hattie (now back in the giraffe enclosure) nodded like one of those dogs (or indeed giraffes – can giraffes nod?) that sit in the back window of a car. Nod-nod. These are the symptoms of ‘yes-men-itus’ (sorry, person) - that’s terminal.

    Dave heard not the sirens, but the “rustling of the long grass”. At this rate we could have the government symphony orchestra. ‘Rustling of long grass’ could join the ‘buck passing’, ‘skids under’, ‘stable door bolting’ and ‘carpet sweeping’ sections. Symphony no. 3 in A Major ‘Crisis’ (Unfinished). I’d pay to watch it (hang on a minute, perhaps I already have…).

    Gordon reverted to his furious scribbling, something had animated him. Oh dear, Dave had made the (unavoidable) mistake of asking about the G20. Gordy told Dave that this was about “lives, jobs, homes and businesses”, and Dave had mentioned none of them. That seemed a bit rich coming from ‘Global- G20- Gordon’. Indeed, we were treated to a long list of countries. I feared Gordy may get his holiday snaps out, Mandy’s already passed them round the Lords. The list went on, and then we had a lot about America. And then a lot more. Darling had stopped moving. I think he may have succumbed. Still there was more. Suddenly the diagnosis was clear. Brown’s answers were ten times longer than usual and he insisted on preaching (sorry, explaining) things. There was even a line lifted straight from the O-man-G-man press conference. Obama-itus had infected Westminster. The Cabinet were in attention withdrawal (or should that be relief?), but Darling, who was suffering most, was in awe, for he had been sent to Stansted (of all places) to meet the O-man. He had shaken his hand.

    However, it seems that Obama-itus has nasty side effects for it was Dave ‘Obama asked to meet with me’ Cameron who got an eventual smile out of Darling. Ever since the PM started his ‘do nothing’ jibe, said Dave, “he has been going down and we have been going up”. Naughty Merv’s warning had a little more salt rubbed in it, yet the Chancellor was still smiling. He’s met Obama. He’s seen what it is like to have a popular leader. He’s seen hope. Obama-itus seems to be spreading. The Cabinet have been negligently poisoned. Westminster is infected.

    Mandygascar: The Movie

    Last week we had violence, we had war. This week was less battlefield and more battle over the last jam sandwich at the Women’s Institute tea. Make jam not war - all they actually succeeded in making was snore. For once PMQs was actually dull. Even the village elderly and their sandwiches are more interesting. It was not a battlefield of any sort. It was a zoo and one of those dodgy regional zoos you have never heard of and will not make the mistake of visiting again. All the animals sleep in their huts all day thus you pay are robbed of some ludicrous entrance fee to look in a succession of empty cages. The Westminster cage (should that be bubble?) was well and truly empty; I felt robbed.

    Hattie was on top zebra form (like I said, it was dull). Gone are the giraffe days, it is all about stripes. It is the age of the ‘new woman’; I suppose that makes the sharp pinstripes the ‘new zebra’? The ‘new’ zebra was up against one of the lions of the Tory front bench, the other being OsbornehahahahahaKen Clarke. The lion wanted to know about the working capital scheme that still is not actually working.

    The not actually working capital scheme, Harperson assured us, was in fact a very nearly almost soon to be working capital scheme, essentially a probably never working capital scheme. Apparently the government has helped a whole 93 businesses. 93? The zoo sensed it was feeding time. A few seconds later it was 93,000 businesses. Hang on, where did the other 92,907 come from? That was quick. Anything to do with the Business Secretary’s trip to Chile? (or was it Brazil?) I hear these beach bars are really struggling (do they have beach bars in Chile?). I fear said ‘businesses’ may have been the sort that don’t actually exist.

    The lion now wanted to know about the mortgage support scheme, or rather the mortgage lack of support scheme and the job recruitment scheme, or as the government have chosen to interpret it, the job redundancy scheme. ‘HMG – not helping you to find a job’ reads the slogan (well actually it doesn’t, but it should).

    Hattie hopped from hoof to hoof. She trotted out (excuse the pun) the usual ‘do nothing Tories’ line: “the Opposition would take no action and make the recession worse and longer”. Make the recession worse? Not sure we need to, the government (Gordon) seem to have managed that all on their own.

    The call of the wild was spreading for Hague took us to South America, to a particularly disturbing image of the PM and the other PM in speedos. I’m not sure my eyes are up to that particular mental image. This is getting less like government by the minute and more like Madagascar 3. Escape from the zoo to South America. I might pitch it to Pixar. Mandygascar: The Movie. On second thoughts…

    Hague asked about naughty Merv and his fiscal expansion. Or lack of. Does the government agree with the Governor? (Maybe that should that be the Guv’nor?) Hattie tried the ‘do nothing’ jibe. Hague asked again. The Lion seemed weary, batting the irritating flies away with the swish of a tail. Hattie seemed disappointed. She wanted the lion to roar. She wanted a fight. She pitched the class war. “The Conservatives’ priority is to give £200,000 each in tax cuts to just 3,000 millionaires."

    “The question was about the Governor of the Bank of England.” Again he tried (the third time in case you’d lost track). “The Budget will be on 22nd April.” Err, good. I’m pleased that it will, but err, about the Guv’nor? I was beginning to think that sticking Hattie in the zebra, sorry new zebra, enclosure was a mistake. She was jumping around all over the place, more gazelle than zebra. Back and forth, zig zag, up, down, around and around. The smug looking gazelle (can gazelles look smug?) turned round after much a-leaping to discover that the lion hadn’t shifted from his shady spot under a large tree.

    Hattie had one last attempt to start a war, she gave Hague a final poke. “They have set out their stall: it is the millionaire’s manifesto.” Nice sound bite or whatever it is No. 10 like to call such meaningless phrases these days. A minute ago it was all about ‘worse and longer’, then it was something about the far right, then we a-leaped over to millionaires again.

    Presumably all the people with estates valued between £312,000 and £1 million are millionaires too? Now I don’t mean to be funny, but the last time I looked, to be a millionaire required a wealth of more that £1 million, hence, presumably, the term millionaire? I’m starting to fear the reshuffle. What if Hattie gets the Treasury?

    The only slightly less boring bit was when Vince had a go. Things briefly looked up, but not for long. We were soon back to zebra Hattie and her pre-prepared answers. This was not Prime Minister’s Questions, but Prime Minister’s Statements. I want Leopard Dave and Brown Bear in the enclosure together. We all know that however much a-dancing is done the gazelle, or indeed the zebra, is no match for a lion. It was just a shame this one was not interested.