YouTube - Money money money: David Abrahams and Labour:
YouTube video, warning, contains Abba music )
I cannot understand how a party can come into office, say they're going to clean up politics, pass a law demanding transparency in party funding, then perpetually break the damn law they themselves passed. Given all the hoops party administrators are supposed to go through dealing with donations (and yes, the lower end of that admin was something I had to do both while temping in Cowley St and before when on the Exeter exec), it's especially galling to see senior Labour types just ignoring them. Don't these damn fools have training? Or the ability to think? Still, at least one of them has done the decent thing, but again, too early to save flack spreading out—you have to resign after someone calls for it, otherwise they go after someone else. Bloody stupid Westminster games.

[livejournal.com profile] now_show recording was great, pub afterwards with [livejournal.com profile] innerbrat was also cool, even if the annoying drunk talking VERY LOUDLY was a little too loud for me to hear at times. If you're at all interested in taking the piss out of the whole recent debacle, 6.30pm Friday or noon Saturday, BBC Radio 4—you should know this already but some people seem to have an aversion to the channel that, for some obscure reason, also hosts The Archers; no, I don't like that either. Complete with Vince "power" Cable and any many jokes about missing details, lost CDs and the mysteriously appearing donations. Oh, and assuming it gets broadcast, Mitch does a great little ditty about Emma Clarke the voice of the Tube—because she used to be one of the Now Show cast as well. Gordon seems to have forgotten that the breakdown of any relationship, whether with the electorate or a partner, always ends up in an argument of CDs.

I suspect Robin Ince's monologue will get cut to ribbons. I suspect it'll need to be the amount of it that he fluffed up trying to present it.
So, El Gordo has chickened out and is 'treating people as fools', almost certainly as a result of this News of the World poll. He's attempted to defend the decision but I concur with the Observer, this has sparked a Crisis for Brown as election ruled out. All of this leads me to this YouTube vid by Will/[livejournal.com profile] whoukmy friend Mr Pack[1]:
Scary analysis of it from the perspective of the Tories:
A poll to be published by Sunday's News of the World puts the Tories ahead by 6% in marginal seats, with the party overall at 44% against Labour's 38%.

Translated into a general election, it would mean a hung Parliament with Labour holding 306 seats and the Tories 246.
They'd win 6% more votes, but 60 less seats according to the analysis. Can we have STV now PLZKTHX. Oh wait, that sort of forward thinking is beyond the Stupid Party isn't it.

The real question I guess is has this damaged Brown more for the obvious reasons, or has he hurt the Cameron Project by forcing Davy to tack to the right and go for a core votes strategy?
Crossposted on my journal and to [livejournal.com profile] ukpolitics here

[1] Message from Mark: Will's work, but I put it all down to the management, so amended accordingly
OK then, I've taken a screenshot of the final state of play in our predictions poll and compared it to El Gordo's new team
What we got right )
What we got wrong )
What we couldn't decide )

So, overall, 11 correct predictions, 5 wrong, 2 undecideds.  Given that this has been described as "Night of the long knives II" by some, and is definitely the biggest reshuffle in my memory, that's not at all bad.

So, tell me LJ brain trust, what do we want to decide next?
Which reminds me, [livejournal.com profile] mapp? Don't suppose by any chane you could update the icon for me?
I said:
I hope for Johnson, but think Harman has a strong chance, and she made a blatent play for Cruddas's second prefs near the end,
And after the results are called, we see that:
Electoral college results
Candidate 1st round    2nd round   3rd round  4th round  5th round  
Hilary Benn 16.40% 18.22% 22.33%      
Hazel Blears 11.77%          
Jon Cruddas 19.39% 20.39% 23.89% 30.06%    
Peter Hain 15.32% 16.42%        
Harriet Harman 18.93% 21.23% 25.88% 33.58% 50.43% ELECTED
Alan Johnson 18.16% 23.74% 27.90% 36.35% 49.56%  


Her blatant grab for his support worked like a charm. Cruddas won the first round, but barely picked up any second preferences, Johnson was picking up more until close to the end, when Harman then jumped ahead with Jon's votes. Interesting times it seems. Lots of people on the Labour blogs bitching about the voting system, one even said it was "stalinist". To me it remains the best way of determining a result acceptable to all, allows for multiple candidates rather than requiring a stitch up before the actual vote and is invaluable in a close contest, as this undoubtedly was. It also shows that Harman knew to play for second and third preferences a lot more than others, apparently internal canvassing wasn't asking for preferences at wll--and the media constantly referring to it as a "complicated" system was really annoying me throughout.

But most important aspect: Blears last place on barely 11% of the vote. Labour members renew my faith in humanity a little with that one, word has it there was a massive cheer when her elimination was announced.

Loads of politics posts in a row. Time for some frivolity methinks...
Tim at [livejournal.com profile] bloggerheads was working on this one for a bit, thought I'd already posted it but must've forgotten. His breakdown of the dramatis personae is rather good as well. The basic theme we could've been anything that we wanted to be pretty much does sum up this Govt; so many lost opportunities, broken promises, half hearted efforts and poorly thought through responses. Ah well. Enjoy:

The ever excellent [livejournal.com profile] paul_linford_fd sums it ups nicely:
But with all his talent - and public goodwill - Tony Blair really could have been anything that he wanted to be, really could have been up there with Clem, Sir Winnie and the Iron Lady.
ETA: [livejournal.com profile] andrewrilstone I thought I had better say it before someone else does:
There's is an awkward clash on the TV schedules tonight. On one channel at 7PM there's a programme about an evil meglomaniac who gets himself elected prime minister for his own nefarious purposes, while at the same time on the other side it's "Doctor Who".
Very droll.
Righty ho--I said I was going to do this, but, y'know, life got in the way. So, of the current Cabinet, Blair and Prescott are retiring, and Reid says he doesn't want another cabinet job. Leaving a huge list of other people, of varying degrees of talent. Some of them I have a grudging respsct for, some I think are crap, some inspire intense loathing on site and a few, well, I'd not even heard of them--if I've not heard of a Cabinet level minister, let's hear it for Nonentities R Us, right? Following on from Paul Linford's list of a real "government of all the talents?", I give you a poll[1].

Remember you can not tick a box for someone if you've never actually heard of them or have no real opinion, and this is a question of who's likely to be there, not who we want in/out. For example, I suspect Blears has secured herself a plum job, despite the visceral hatred many of us have for her, and I'm guessing Ruth Kelly will survive despite obvious unsuitability for her various recent roles--I really hope Brown moves her to a job without a clear conflict of interest though:
Gordon Brown's Cabinet- who'll be in it? )

I'll pimp this poll about a bit, let's see how good LJ is at predicting El Gordo's actions...

[1] If you don't have a livejournal account but blog elsewhere, you can log in to LJ using any OpenID, including your technorati or typekey profile or your wordpress.com account and still vote in polls &c--not a bad little trick
Watched Question Time last night with SB for the Labour Deputy Leadership contest. Took many notes, might try to write some coherent thoughts up on the whole debate, was very interesting. Following Sue's statement of preferences:
1. Jon, 2. Peter, 3. Alan, 4. Harriet, 5. Hilary, 6. Hazel
I did it based on the following, and in this order: (1) my opinion of how little they were likely to toe Gordon's line, (2) excessive toadying under Tony (3) voting record (4) school and (5) amount of union support.
I thought I'd summarise my thoughts. I don't have a vote, but some of you might (I know at least two do).

Biggest issue is how the Dep Leader will affect Labour's prospect at the next General Election. Unless things change drastically, I currently predict a Tory landslide; that has to be stopped. My personal ideal vote would, fairly obviously as already stated, be a hung Parliament resulting in a Labour/Lib Dem coalition prepared to actually carry out the necessary fundamental constitutional reforms we were promised in '97 and that Brown is hinting might actually now happen. On top of there's a personal factor, who comes across well and would be someone I (and other left-leaning liberals) could possibly work with. So, given I don't have a huge amount of time: My reactions to the candidates and some thoughts )
Will possibly transfer more thoughts as to the positioning elements, but really, if you are in position of a Labour vote; think carefully, as this one will make a huge difference to electoral chances, and I really really can't stand the idea of a Cameron landslide, which I think is what someone like Blears will help lead to.

Off now, Bradford and Soylent Green beckon...
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats & the membership secretary for Calderdale Lib Dems and run the web campaign for the local candidates. I have a job, a stepdaughter and a life.

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