Archive for the 'CON Leadership' Category


If You’re in a Glasshouse …..

Tuesday, August 4th, 2020

Buying Tramadol Online Uk During Corbyn’s leadership, Labour was relentlessly attacked by the Tories, their supporters and cheerleaders in the press for the many failings which, they said, made Labour unfit to run the  country. Worth dwelling on the accusations for what they tell us about today’s Tories.

  • A sympathiser with IRA terrorism: well-worn, repeated on every possible occasion and, combined with his associations with various dubious Palestinian groups and past statements about the causes of Islamist terrorism, the Tories happily painted a picture of a man who seemed, well, ambivalent about the use of terror against civilians, if it was in support of a cause he supported. A man who, a week after the Brighton bombing, invited the convicted IRA volunteers, Linda Quigley and Gerry MacLochlainn, to the Commons, to the disgust of many in his own party – let alone the Tories. 35 years later Johnson was still berating Corbyn about it.
  • Antisemitism: little more to be said on this, at least until the EHRC report comes out. The damage was caused at least as much by who Corbyn had associated with (those Holocaust deniers would keep on popping up at events where Corbyn was present) as by his own actions. The Tories enthusiastically adopted the maxim that you can judge a man by the company he keeps.
  • An unwillingness to stand up to Russia: Corbyn’s response to the Salisbury poisonings was used to show a man who did not take the Russian threat seriously, whether because of ideological sympathy by him or his advisors (Seamus Milne being particularly helpful in this regard) or simple naivety about Russia’s intentions.
  • An automatic anti-Western bias: all too easy to present Corbyn’s approach to foreign policy as little more than “my enemy’s enemy is my friend”. Any country or cause which criticised the West, no matter how awful themselves, found favour: Iran, the Serbs during Yugoslavia’s bloody civil war, Venezuela. It sometimes seemed that concern for human rights was less about those deprived of them and more about how to use the concept to beat up whoever Corbyn disliked most.
  • An obsession with identity politics: as if all politics is not at some level about “identity” (the Brexit campaign waves hello). Still, the accusation went, Labour was unwilling to speak up for white working-class girls in its heartlands for fear of confronting other client groups and/or being accused of racism. It betrayed those suffering from child abuse on the altar of political correctness. Tom Watson’s parti pris accusations against senior Tories must have infuriated those thinking child abuse too vile a crime to be used for political advantage.
  • Nepotism and cronyism: Corbyn’s son working for McDonnell, Andrew Murray’s daughter appointed to a plum Labour Party role, McCluskey’s old squeeze to another. All very cosy and incestuous.

Tramadol Online Cash On Delivery So you’d think, wouldn’t you, that the Tories would not fall into the same traps, that they would take care about who they associate with, who they promote, who they praise and elevate? Apparently not, if those nominated by the government to be peers is anything to go by. Deemed suitable to be a member of our legislature are:- 

  • A woman who has consistently denied the war crimes carried out by the Bosnian Serbs against Bosnian Muslims, who – as publisher (of Living Marxism) – was found by a court to have libelled two ITV journalists who reported the facts about what was happening, who dismissed the court’s decision, after the verdict likening the two journalists to David Irving because they had both brought litigation – ignoring the critical difference between them. (Perhaps the differences between telling the truth and inventing facts might be a worthy topic for a future Moral Maze programme.) Certainly, disregard for facts and dismissal of court rulings is now very a la mode. Ms Fox was simply ahead of her time. If you want an example of the intellectually dishonest reasoning of the founder of The Academy of Ideas on this topic, read here. The inability to understand the difference between the denial of established facts and shutting down unpopular opinions would disgrace an averagely bright A-level student. As Deborah Lipstadt, a woman who knows a thing or two about genocide denial, has put it: everyone is free to have their own opinions; they are not free to invent their own facts.
  • Ms Fox did not have much regard then for freedom of speech though, strangely, when it came to child abuse and jihadist videos, her concern was all for freedom of speech including, apparently, the freedom to disseminate films of criminal offences, though she apparently knows (how?) that most child abuse videos are “simulated”. Nor – more grotesquely – has she ever resiled from or apologised for her pro-IRA views and their campaign of violence before 1998, a campaign which killed and injured, not just thousands of innocents in Ireland and Britain, but 3 Tory MPs, their wives and tried to assassinate a PM.

source site What a forgiving party the current Tory party now is! Poor Jeremy must be wondering why no forgiveness was extended to him. Perhaps it might have been, had he been pro-Brexit. After all, that’s why she has been elevated, isn’t it, pro-Brexit views being the British equivalent of medieval Catholic indulgences wiping away all other sins? But if the quota for pro-Brexit media loudmouths simply had to be filled, couldn’t Daniel Hannan be prevailed upon? Or Ann Widdecombe, in extremis?

  • A former editor of the Evening Standard (previously deputy editor of the Daily Telegraph, when Johnson was a columnist there) who strongly supported the PM in his first election for London Mayor 12 years ago. A 2018 CBE for services to the arts since did not suffice apparently. 
  • The current owner of the Evening Standard, who together with his father, a former KGB agent until 1992, has made oodles of money which he has used to buy his way into the higher echelons of London society, much as described in the ISC’s recent report on Russia (pp.15-17). Look who’s being naïve now. 
  • The PM’s brother, an MP for 9 years, a junior Minister for 3, mainly known for having resigned twice as a Minister, the second time from his brother’s government, over Brexit. He then chose not to stand again as an MP. However worthy, it’s not exactly a lifetime of public service.

Shop Tramadol Online Ambivalence towards violence, naivety about Britain’s enemies, associating with undesirables, cronyism, nepotism, revolting views. We have them all. Johnson has not just adopted Labour’s public spending but their less desirable “values” as well. And added some Grade A hypocrisy into the mix, so that we can enjoy the spectacle of those railing against unelected European bureaucrats appointing unelected legislators that the people can never get rid of or hold accountable.

source site What have we missed in the meanwhile? Well, the setting up of a panel to come up with curbs on judicial review, led by a QC and former Minister, who in February wrote that the government should limit the courts’ power (impartial tribunals are so passé). Edward Faulks’ other claim to fame was being advisor to Chris Grayling when he was Lord Chancellor and enacted reforms to Legal Aid which have pretty much destroyed it and, in consequence, the ability of anyone other than the wealthy to access justice.

get link The panel’s terms of reference are here, clause 4(b) being the important one, seeking to remove or limit the “duty of candour” by the government to the court and other parties. In short, if the government does not have to be honest in its explanations (and remember, this was a government which could find no-one willing to swear on oath what the reasons for proroguing Parliament last year were), how can it be effectively scrutinised or challenged? Why should the people know? They exist just to be venerated when it suits the government politically, not to be treated as adults and trusted with information so that they can hold the government properly accountable. Once again, the government gives the impression that its attitude to law is as described by Anarchasis: “Written laws are like spiders’ webs; they catch the weak and poor but are torn in pieces by the rich and powerful.

Tramadol Ohne Rezept Online There is one thing to be grateful for. We need never again be troubled by Tories railing about Labour’s attitude to terrorist violence or child abuse or fondness for unelected elites or being too pro-Russian or having dodgy friends or being run by cronies. We know now – if we did not before – that such concern is so much cant, useful only as a political weapon. And if they try, we can point at Johnson’s very own “Lavender List”, perfumed with the stink of hypocrisy, nepotism and cronyism, and laugh. Small mercies, these days.

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The latest Opinium poll has Starmer beating Johnson on thirteen different measures yet still the Tories retain their 4% voting lead

Sunday, July 12th, 2020

Good news for the red team as their leader completes his first three months?

see The above chart from Opinium sets out the responses to a wide range of match-ups between Starmer and Johnson and as can be seen these sre not good for the current incumbent at Number 10.

source url Tramadol Online Overnight One of the reasons as you look through the detail is that voters of just about all persuasions including Tories are reluctant to give the new LAB leader and former DPP a negative rating on anything.

Jual Tramadol Online As can be expected the latest approval ratings in the poll have Johnson a net 28 points behind the opposition leader. The PM still has a small lead as “best PM”. Like just about all UK pollsters Opinium asks for Westminster voting intention first in its polling and clearly here Labour have some way to go to recover from the Corbyn years which in its final electoral test last December saw the party slump to it lowest level in terms of MPs since 1935. I just wonder whether the firm would get a different outcome with named leader voting questions. Instead of ticking just the party box poll participants are given the choice of Keir Starmer’s Labour and the like. Interestingly this poll has the following finding with Rishi Sunak appearing alongside Johnson’s name on trust on the economy.

Mike Smithson Posted in Boris, CON Leadership, Keir Starmer, Labour leadership, Leader approval ratings Cheap Tramadol | No Comments »


YouGov finds little evidence of people wanting to ease the lockdown

Friday, April 24th, 2020
YouGov Apr 21/22

Tramadol With Mastercard So far at least, if the polling above has this right, there is no real desire amongst the public in the UK to ease some of the lockdown restrictions. Every suggestion of things being eased in the poll found the majority of respondents wanting things to stay as they are. This suggests that there’s a broad acceptance of the reasons why this is having to be done and there’s no indication there there will be any change in the immediate future. We haven’t see anything like what’s happened in the US of demonstrations against the restrictions where it has become a much more political issue.

Order Tramadol From India One thing that’s helping the stability in the UK is that we are four years away from a likely general election. In the US WH2020 takes place in the first week in November.

go here Given how few things there are to bet on at the moment I was expecting betting markets on the timescale of the shutdown.

Mike Smithson

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The rise and rise of Rishi Sunak as seen on the Betfair exchange

Wednesday, March 18th, 2020

Order Tramadol Us To Us What is really incredible about the Richi Sunak is that barely anybody had heard of him just 6 months ago. Now he is barely off the front pages, one of the key faces of the Johnson government and miles ahead of anybody else in the betting for Johnson’s successor as Conservative leader.

Order Tramadol Cod Next Day Delivery Increasingly he is looking like the PM in waiting should something happen to Johnson in the short or long-term. It was in November less than 6 months ago that I first became aware of him when Philip Thompson submitted a guest post suggesting that at 200/1 Sunak was a good bet to become next prime minister. Then he was a minster but not even in the cabinet.

Tramadol Hcl Online I love super longshot bets and got £20 on Sunak at Ladbrokes at 250/1 including their odds boost. I know several other PBers also got the long price.

Sunak had a stroke of luck when Johnson was forming his new post-GE2019 cabinet. A vacancy occurred for the Chancellor’s job after Javid would not agree to the terms he was required to accept about SPADs.

What is clear, and we saw it yesterday, is that Sunak is becoming increasingly confident and is getting better in TV interviews.

The current next prime minister betting is an odd market because if it is to be the favourite, Starmer, LAB has to win a general election or least become the lead party in anti conservative Coalition. We haven’t really look at this yet because the next general elections could be nearly 5 years away and the challenge facing Starmer assuming he gets the leadership is colossal. Corbyn’s devastating defeat in December saw the party drop to just 202 MPs the lowest since 1935. To get within shouting distance at a general election is a tall order particularly as Labour’s position in Scotland looks so bad.

That 250/1 Sunak bet is looking better by the day

Mike Smithson


A 200/1 Tip for Next Prime Minister

Friday, November 29th, 2019

The man who took over Hague’s Richmond (Yorks) seat at GE2015

One ever present Political Betting market is that of who will be the next Prime Minister. This will be greatly influenced by the outcome of the General Election, but probably not settled by this election. This is a market that could take many years before it is settled, which provides opportunities for trading bets.

The polls currently indicate a healthy Conservative Majority. If that occurs you can rule out instantly Jeremy Corbyn. If the Conservatives get a healthy majority then I believe this results in three likely scenarios. In no particular order: 1: Labour elects a new leader, Johnson serves a full term but loses the following election. This could be made more likely by Brexit being a failure if you are expecting that. Look for Labour candidates who are both likely to be elected and who you think could win an election. Starmer is currently the most likely candidate on the markets from this category.

Order Tramadol 180 Tabs 2: Johnson runs into problems early in the next term and has to be replaced rapidly by a Tory elder statesman. Familiar names like Hunt, Gove and Javid come to mind.>

Tramadol Online Ohio 3: Johnson serves for a long time and the ‘next generation’ of Conservative MPs come forward, with one of these in the future replacing Johnson. A number of former ‘big hitters’ will no longer be in the Commons next time so it could be time for a new face to come forward.

It is in the third category that I suspect value lies. Whether as a potential winner, or as a trading bet. The market has a tendency to overestimate long established names, even David Miliband is still on the Betfair list. If the Conservatives do indeed win a healthy majority then we will quickly move on from the last generation of MPs that have stepped down and there are some potential future big hitters in that list.

Currently listed at 200/1 with Ladbrokes is Rishi Sunak. A supporter of Johnson he has repeatedly appeared on the media to argue the government’s line, after the newly elected PM culled the Cabinet and promoted Sunak he argued unequivocally that Johnson was being “decisive”. During the election campaign Sunak has been used frequently on media appearances, appearing on GMB, Sky, BBC etc. Already promoted once by Johnson to Chief Secretary of the Treasury, while not yet in the Cabinet he does attend it. go site Sunak has been earmarked by Boris to represent the Conservative Party in the 7-way debate and is already tipped to get a full Cabinet portfolio in the future.

At 39 there is potential for Sunak to be a big name for many years to come – in which case I do not think the 200/1 odds will remain for long. Either as a trading bet or to actually win, at 200/1 could this be our Next Prime Minister?

Philip Thompson

Philip Thompson is a longstanding PBer


A confidence vote to get rid of PM Johnson could happen next week

Sunday, September 29th, 2019

The Betfair 69% on it taking place this year looks a decent bet

A leading SNP MP, Stewart Hosie, has told the BBC that there could be a confidence vote in Johnson as early as next week.

If this happens, given the current Commons numbers, Johnson would almost certainly lose and then, under the FTPA, there would a fortnight under which an alternative government could be formed and if not a general election would be triggered.

From what I can see the thinking is that getting the PM out now is seen critical to avoid a no deal Brexit on October 31st. A new government made up of all the opposition parties groupings including the Tories MPs axed by Johnson would then take over the reins of government to take the country past the October 31st Article 50 deadline.

The main problem is then who would become PM. While other parties might be happy with Corbyn Jo Swinson has been very clear that the LAB leader would not be acceptable and the LDs need to be on board. Alternatives such as Ken Clarke and Margaret Beckett have been suggested.

An interesting name that has been raised is the outgoing Speaker, John Bercow, who was originally elected as an MP for the Tory party.

My guess is that Corbyn might be prepared for another figure which is why my money is on Beckett.

Buy 100Mg Tramadol Online A big issue overall is that although the referendum was for Leave the margin was so tight that a 1.9% Leave to Remain swing would have produced a different outcome. The Brexiteers got 51.9% of the vote but want 100% of the spoils. That could be their undoing.

You can get 69% on Betfair that there will be a second VONC in 2019 which looks like a good bet.

Meanwhile it is Tory conference time in Manchester.

Mike Smithson


Tommyknockers. The death of the old Conservative party

Saturday, September 28th, 2019

Stephen King has produced some dross. One of his worst is a book called source url Tommyknockers, the premise of which is that an alien spacecraft is found buried in the woods in Maine, and it then starts a creeping possession of the minds and bodies of the local townsfolk, until finally they mutate into the form of the aliens who flew in it. Stephen King himself has stated that he regards this as an awful book.

Nevertheless, it provides a good metaphor for what we have seen happen to the Conservative party in the last few years. Since the EU referendum was unearthed, it has undergone a slow transformation from a placidly liberal party of law and order and sound government into an angry and wild English nationalist mob.

Wednesday was the day when the Conservative party spat out the last of its liberal teeth. Fresh from its defeat in the Supreme Court, where the government had been found to have made an illegal attempt to suspend Parliamentary democracy, the party of law and order might have been expected to have been whipped and cowed.  

Not a bit of it. The government decided that the Supreme Court had got the law wrong and only its current inability to place itself above it meant that it would grudgingly comply with it. No apologies, no contrition for unconstitutionally suspending democracy. The Attorney General, so far from humiliated that his advice had been shredded, decided to boom out his opinion that this Parliament is dead.  

The Prime Minister refused to apologise and took the opportunity to rail over and over against what he termed the “Surrender Act”. In the face of outrage from opposition MPs, who queued up to ask him to moderate his language given the death threats they were receiving from those who adopted the Prime Minister’s words, he doubled down, describing as “humbug” a reference to Jo Cox and arguing that the best way to honour her was to get Brexit done.  

For a man who once professed a desire to unite the country, he’s doing a terrible job. His hero, Winston Churchill, once said that if Hitler invaded Hell he would make at least a favourable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons. Boris Johnson was not prepared to go even that far to help woo the support of potentially biddable Labour MPs.

Most importantly, however, was the lack of queasiness on the Conservative benches. No Cabinet ministers resigned and no MPs have called for the Prime Minister’s resignation, despite his personal involvement in the greatest affront to democracy in living memory and its crushing rejection by the Supreme Court. Just a small handful of Conservative MPs who still hold the whip have expressed any qualms about Boris Johnson’s language, and none has done so in anything other than the weakest terms. The takeover of the Conservative party is pretty much complete.

(Amazingly, this takes place against the backdrop of a scandal that all by itself would have the potential to bring down a Prime Minister. When he was Mayor of London, Boris Johnson apparently steered funds and access to the start-up business of a young woman to whom he was very close at the time. Lord Sandwich supposedly said to John Wilkes: ‘You will either die of a pox or on the gallows’. Wilkes retorted: ‘That depends, my Lord, whether I embrace your mistress or your principles’. Boris Johnson seems to be attempting a unique double.)

Where next? There is no way back. The Conservatives have had a clean break divorce from prudence. In two short months, Boris Johnson has burned the party’s bridges. It will be a long time before we next see a Conservative leader who smoothly seeks to persuade the country that he or she will offer stable and strong government.

Instead, the Conservatives have cast their lot with populism. With Labour firmly campaigning as outsider insurgents as well, an opportunity is going begging for any party that wishes to campaign as the party of quiet competence and measured governance. The Lib Dems look very well-placed to pick that up, if they so choose.

The interesting question is whether they should actively seek this vote out.  There’s definitely a section of the public that votes for good government. However, the recent past has shown (and the Lib Dems’s own resurgence indicates) that having a tubthumping platform is a good vote-getter. The Lib Dems, more than any other party, now stand at a crossroads. They have a big decision to make about their approach to the dissident Conservatives, who come from this spat-out strand of the Conservative party.  Do they seek to co-opt them or do they seek to leave them to be eclipsed? It would be a big message if, for example, David Gauke, Justine Greening or Dominic Grieve were to join them — but that message would be heard by left of centre voters as well as right of centre voters and may repel some voters as well as attract others. It’s a big call and not an easy one. For what it’s worth, I think they should look to broaden their tent and actively reach out to those Conservatives who the current Conservative party not only rejects but regards as hate figures. In the coming years, having steadiness as a USP may be very valuable indeed.

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Changing the Prime Minister might be the only way

Monday, September 9th, 2019

One thing the existing House of Commons can agree on (it can’t on anything else) is that it doesn’t want No Deal. It’s now voted several times to this effect and, in fact, it’s as determined to prevent No Deal as the Government is to deliver Brexit by 31st October at all costs. It has been trying to do everything it can to stop it: delaying a General Election, challenging the proroguing of Parliament, and, now, passing the Hillary Benn Bill into law.

Equally, the present Government is equally clear it will test this law to the extremes – everything short of breaking the law. There have even been suggestions of invoking the Civil Contingencies Act over the weekend. It might also yet find allies within the EU on scuppering yet another delay, including President Macron. The House of Commons therefore has no reason to trust the present administration that it will honour their wishes.

However, two things remain true: this current Government doesn’t have a majority (or anything close) for its policy and, whilst Parliament will be prorogued on Thursday, it will come back on 14th October. The Queen will then make her speech and – usually – there will be six days of debate assigned to each policy area within it followed by a vote in the Commons on whether to accept it. The European Council meeting takes place right in the middle of this: on 17th and 18th October. If by this date there is no deal agreed or no extension secured to Brexit (either by obfuscation by the Government or through European Council exasperation or a mixture of both) then the House of Commons is staring into the abyss. They will be out of options, except one: to strip control from the Executive, and form an alternative administration. That administration will be left with two choices: to either pass whatever is on the table from the EU, at that stage, or to revoke A50.

Whether this occurs through some procedural chicanery facilitated by the Speaker during the Queen’s Speech debates (which I don’t rule out) or shortly after will be interesting to see but matters will come to a head during the week commencing Monday 21st October, which will be Parliament’s last chance and a matter of days away from the Article 50 termination date.

There has been lots of focus recently on the FTPA and that a Vote of No Confidence leads to an early general election after fourteen days if no alternative government is formed that the House of Commons subsequently resolves it has confidence in. However, it can happen much faster than that. In this scenario, I expect it would happen inside 24 hours.

It’s my view that the House of Commons would baulk at an outright Revoke, and will be painfully aware of the consequences of doing so, but would want the next ‘least bad’ option. Something that can kicks and mitigates the impact. Parliament would want to ensure the European Parliament had several days to ratify at their end (indeed it’s currently not planning to sit from 28th to 31st October) and, if needs be, prepare any additional emergency legislation in the UK to convert it into law.

There would also be many MPs who’d either baulk at voting for Jeremy Corbyn as PM (why take the risk of his disorganisation and equivocation at this late stage?) or by having “voted for Brexit” on their records, so the majority required to pass the Withdrawal Agreement in my view would drop. I’d expect abstentions from the Liberals Democrats and SNP at the very least. But we’d need someone who could both do the job and carry 280 to 290 MPs in the Commons with.

I think a Conservative (or ex-Conservative) would be an obvious choice. The opposition would love to split the party further, make it own Brexit (at an Executive level) and it’s clear that with the personal animosity many possess toward Boris Johnson, this may influence their choices too. There are also several Conservatives currently on the backbenches who might be sufficiently altruistic to sacrifice themselves in the national interest where they sense the game might be up anyway.

Purchase Tramadol Overnight Ken Clarke is flavour of the month but my view is that Jeremy Hunt represents a good choice. If he could command a temporary Government of National Unity to pass the WA there’d be no better way to mitigate Brexit, spite Boris and damage the Conservatives all in one. Hunt would take it in my view because he’ll be very nervous about his Surrey South West seat post No Deal and would relish being the saviour – few people give up the chance to become Prime Minister and lead.

Cheap Tramadol Online He is currently available at 66/1 with Ladbrokes and William Hill, where I might have him down more at 15/1 or even 12/1. I’m on.

Casino Royale

Casino Royale is a long standing PBer and tweets as CasinoRoyalePB