Friday 28th December 2007

11:09 pm

Elsewhere in the blogosphere

Gravatar Over at the “Post of the Week” website, voting has opened on a shortlist drawn from the winners of each week during the year. The eight nominated posts are a snapshot of some of the best writing on blogs in the English-speaking world, but it’s a completely different world to our cosy aggregator based world of [...]
10:38 pm

16 year old killed in Islington over a 'dirty look'

Gravatar Yesterday I went to the Angel in Islington to buy a book. On the way there I noticed buses were being diverted from Upper Street to Liverpool Road, and thinking there must have been an accident or road closures, thought nothing more about it. Later watching the news on the shocking assassination of Benazir Bhutto on News 24, I learnt that yet another teenager had been stabbed to death, this time at the Angel in Islington- hence the diverted buses. This was in broad daylight at a busy bus stop in a busy shopping centre. Witnesses say that the fight ...
7:59 pm

Proof that Labour spends more money in Labour areas

Gravatar I missed this piece of evidence showing that the Labour government spends more money in Labour areas than they do in areas with councils and MP's of other parties. Well done to Lib Dem MP David Laws for finding this out.
7:16 pm

Arther Seldon, the IEA, economic liberalism and the Liberals

Gravatar I’ve just read an interesting article from the Journal of Liberal History about Arthur Seldon, a founding member of the IEA and at the time Liberal activist. In those days, the IEA was seen as a Liberal Party front by some sectors, the Liberals embracing economic liberalism which was at the party’s core from the [...]
6:56 pm

Will This Roll On Diana-esque for 10 Years?

Gravatar Ok Norfolk Blogger is telling us that the cause of death of Benazir Bhutto may be a strange one. However, he is quoting Brigadier Javed Iqbal Cheema the Interior Minister, a close assosiate of President Pervez Musharraf, Ms Bhutto's opponent, who says she died from a a fractured skull as the result of banging her head on the lever for the sun roof. Now I'm not sure what speed the car was going at
6:37 pm

Iliberal Tory nonsense

Gravatar A new initiative by the Conservatives is reported here. The plan is to jail relatives of non-EU foreigners who do not ensure that their visitors return home. The idea is that a named sponsor would take responsibility. Chris Huhne pointed out the problems with the initiative, calling it, 'a proposal too far' and pointing out the 'ethical and practical difficulties'. I completely agree. Jailing someone for the actions of another seems to me entirely unreasonable and unfair. And I believe it could lead to awful situations in which someone is jailed and then their relative is allowed to stay for ...
6:04 pm

What a bizarre way to die ?

Gravatar After all the misinformation about Benazir hutto's death, the real cause of death has finally been announced. The initial claim that she had been shot twice was wrong, as was the subsequent claim that she was struck by shrapnel from the bomb. Instead, it turns out that the shockwave from the bomb rocked her bomb proof car, but as she had been waving to the crowd through her sunroof, she was not strapped in to the car seats meaning she hit her head on the plastic handle of the sunroof, causing her to have a fractured skull. One commentator on ...
5:09 pm

Lucky Brown: Al Qaeda Back In News

Gravatar This is a test of whether or not my cynicism about this government is justified. With Al Qaeda being fingered for the assassination of Bhutto, Brown wastes no time in announcing that he intends to step up the fight against terrorism. The cynical part of me, the part of me that’s had it up to the neck with Labour, says that Brown will be a happier man today than he’s been for the last few weeks. As far as he’s concerned the media agenda’s moved onto a subject that he will feel is a ’strong’ area for him. But the ...
5:01 pm

I love these pix!

Gravatar Just got these lovely pix of Lara's 21st, here with Ravi (not often I get a pic of him!) ...............................and here with partner Nafis, cousins Scott, Haley and Kirith and Ravi.
3:25 pm

An ineffective law

Gravatar The Guardian reports that police investigating possible criminal charges arising from Labour's "donorgate" controversy risk another failed prosecution attempt because of the uncertain state of the law. They say that following the Crown Prosecution Service's refusal to sanction a prosecution over the higher-profile loans for peerages accusations, the uncertainty may again mean no action is taken when the Metropolitan police file is given to the CPS, probably next month. Apparently the problem is one of establishing a public interest justification for a prosecution where those involved have all admitted error. The Electoral Commission clearly believe that the law is an ...
2:48 pm

A Christmas Tale.............................

Gravatar Christmas is often a time for reminiscing and this Christmas was no different in my family. My children were reminiscing about the bedtime stories I used to tell them. Favourites included the Farty Dinosaur. So, being as it is still the pantomime season and I am still procrastinating about doing my paperwork, here is a little tale in honour of Laurence Boyce who I know loves fairytales! Lindarella There was once a little girl who lived in a tiny little house at the edge of a forest. She shared her house with her mother, her three sisters and two brothers. ...
2:47 pm

The most hilarious pop video of 2007? [Rated 15!]

2:15 pm

Hell hath no fury like a blogger scorned...

Gravatar hopefully none of the following people will mind me blogging on their political affiliations on facebook... From the 'Political Compass' application I recently added to my profile I can see that Linda Jack is the most left-wing of my blogging friends who have taken the test. Peter Dunphy is the most right-wing. Charlotte Gore is the second most right-wing of my friends. Alix Mortimer is the second most left-wing. Not surprisingly, I'm closest to Will Howells. This has been one of the most interesting applications that I have added to facebook. But what have I learnt really? That I ...
2:14 pm

The Christmas - New Year bore!

Gravatar Yep we survived another Christmas! Though it wasn't as easy as others. First I have been ill over Christmas with a stomach bug and a bad cold - topped together made for a downer on the Christmas festivities! Least I was up and about on the big day unlike on Christmas Eve which I spent in bed. Second the bolier packed up sometime on Christmas Eve - so we have been with heating and hot water since then! Thank god for electricity to heat up water and keep us a little bit warmer! Hopefully that is being sorted as I ...
1:28 pm

The new leader should wear a dress more often

Gravatar I voted for Nick Clegg in December, the first time I have ever backed a winner. I must confess to not following the campaign very closely as (i) it was rather lacklustre (ii) I had made my mind up before it began. Now since he’s been elected, the sense of expectation among what might perjoratively be called the ‘Westminster elite’ is almost palpable. Nick has been presented as a new, young face for our party extremely well and he has made the predictable bland speeches typical to any new party leader these days promising change. Unfortunately for me, and possibly ...
1:09 pm

Holiday season competition: name that animal

12:50 pm

Is This Also the Burial of Pakistan Democracy?

Gravatar As is the Islamic custom Benazir Bhutto has been buried before nightfall. With her death being so late that meant today. The Bhutto family are as much martyrs for their country as the Neru/Ghandi family across the border in India. But what next for Pakistan? At the moment there are three days of national mourning for the ex-Prime Minster the first female to hold such a position in a Muslim
12:45 pm

Political assassination

Gravatar Switched to a relaxing Christmas cheer and prospects of a new read, last night – news of the shocking assassination of Benazir Bhutto brought me back to the reality of politics and violence in other countries, especially the dangers to women politicians when they put themselves forward to challenge the status quo. BBC 4’s Women’s Hour focused on this, this morning, beginning with the
12:24 pm

Doom and other financial hiccups

Gravatar I notice that, as Sterling hits a new low against the Euro, that Ambrose Evans Pritchard is now predicting 1929 is the benchmark to measure the likely fallout of the credit crunch. Now, I am starting to think that Ambrose is beginning to sound like the boy who cried wolf a bit. I do not underestimate the scale of the emerging problems- as I have said before, the scale is truly enormous. However Evans Pritchard continues to add in his view that the Euro will collapse and much of the European Union with it. In fact, I think that the ...
8:58 am

Oh dear what can the matter be? Mrs Thatcher got stuck in the lavatory.

Gravatar This is manna from heaven for headline writers everywhere. The Telegraph goes with "Houston we have a problem": Margaret Thatcher may have been not for turning, but the handle on a lavatory door that she encountered in America proved equally stubborn. A hitherto private account of the Iron Lady’s visit to the US in 1977, written by an official at the British consulate-general in Texas, records
8:53 am

A look back at the polls: December

Gravatar We tend not to be too poll-obsessed here at LDV - of course we look at them, as do all other politico-geeks, but viewed in isolation no one poll will tell you very much beyond what you want to read into it. Looked at over a reasonable time-span and, if there are enough polls, you [...]
8:28 am

That was the year that wasn't

Gravatar The Number Ten website has a "Look back at the PM's year 2007". It is more notable for what isn't included, rather than what is. No wonder Nick Clegg said that "this is taking spin to new levels".
8:20 am

Pakistan, Passion and Prayers

Gravatar I was away for the day yesterday and only heard the news of Benazir Bhutto's death as we drove home. I was saddened and disappointed but it wasn't really a surprise (which made it even sadder). It's very hard for us here in cosy Eaglescliffe to understand or appreciate the passion which politics can arouse in people elsewhere. Pakistan is a country which was born from a struggle, had further
1:15 am

Benazir Bhutto

Gravatar I remember back when Musharraf came to power and kicked all the politicians out of Pakistan that many greeted this with what at best could be described as ambivalence. A number of people, including prominent Lib Dems, were of the opinion that while military coups are, of course, a Bad Thing, the self-serving corrupt political class in Pakistan had had its day, failed and that Musharraf might be able to bring a period of stability out of which genuine politics could hold sway. Eight years on and I’m not convinced that Musharraf has any firmer grip on the country than ...
1:09 am

Feeling sick after Christmas

Gravatar No, I didn't eat too much. I did hear while driving back from Norfolk of the murder of Benazir Bhutto. I could have sworn I heard George Bush and Gordon Brown condemn the murder. How much western money has gone into propping up Musharraf?

Previous days:

Thursday 27th December 2007, Wednesday 26th December 2007, Tuesday 25th December 2007, Monday 24th December 2007, Sunday 23rd December 2007, Saturday 22nd December 2007