Thursday, 31 January 2008

Mighty systems, crap results

One, for all you millions out there wondering why I have been so uncharacteristically silent this week, I can only apologise and plead pressure of (very badly paid) work.

Two, bouncing back undaunted, here we have a perfect example of every reason why this (in fact probably any) government cannot be trusted.

January 31 is the deadline for filing tax returns in the UK.

At vast, not to say prodigious, expense, our right-on, fully wired-up government has made it easier for us to do so by providing an interactive website to allow those who can to file their returns on the web.

Except that it doesn't work. Today it crashed. Exactly when it was supposed to be working as (hideously expensively) advertised.

In short, a precise example of the fatuousness, incompetence and idiocy underpinning our relationship with those who govern us. They trumpet their inclusiveness. They spend billions claiming to deliver it. Yet they are incapable – institutionally and systematically – of living up to their laughably over-inflated preening.

Welcome to a world that is as catastrophically inept and bloated as it is complacent and useless. And all of it at our expense.

To which the only rational response is to suggest that Gordo sticks this, yet another comical government cock-up, right up his vaunted inflation rate.

Roll on ID cards ...

Saturday, 26 January 2008

This is simply magnificent

Did you know that 2008 is the International Year of the Potato, a programme launched under the auspices of the UN?

Neither did I.

What a fool I have been not to have realised that this seminal event was already underway.

I know it will transform not just my life but the lives of millions.

And how wonderful to know the UN spends its money so wisely.

There is hope for mankind yet in this cruel and dark world.

H/T Squander Two

The wonderful Ana Ivanovic ...

... lost to the unspeakable Sharapova in the Australian Open final, going down 7-5 6-3.

Yet another of my predictions bites the dust.

But she remains ravishing.

But, of course.

Parris at his best

Another palpable bullseye from Parris today in The Times.

This in particular is brilliant.

This combination of stubbornness and vacillation is getting to look really creepy. Here is a chicken that flaps into the middle of the road, half thinks better of it, then, paralysed by a kind of furious vexation, stands his ground in the face of the oncoming truck. Winston Churchill once described Stanley Baldwin's Cabinet as “resolved to be irresolute, adamant for drift, solid for fluidity and all powerful for impotence”. Speaking at the Mansion House in 2004, Mr Brown, then Chancellor, quoted the remark. Interesting that it had impressed itself on his mind. I remember thinking at the time that this insight went a mite close to home.

Friday, 25 January 2008

Read it and weep

Daniel Hannan has written a really terrifying post at the Telegraph on machinations at the EU parliament that are quite jaw-dropping.

And this from a democratic institution? It is beyond shameless.

French rogue trader: UPDATE

FRIENDS of rogue trader Jerome Kerviel last night blamed his $7 billion losses on unbearable levels of stress brought on by a punishing 30-hour week.

Kerviel was known to start work as early as nine in the morning and still be at his desk at five or even five-thirty, often with just an hour and a half for lunch.

One colleague said: "He was, how you say, une workaholique. I have a family and a mistress so I would leave the office at around 2pm at the latest, if I wasn't on strike.

"But Jerome was tied to that desk. One day I came back to the office at 3pm because I had forgotten my stupid little hat, and there he was, fast asleep on the photocopier.

"At first I assumed he had been having sex with it, but then I remembered he'd been working for almost six hours."

As the losses mounted, Kerviel tried to conceal his bad trades by covering them with an intense red wine sauce, later switching to delicate pastry horns.

At one point he managed to dispose of dozens of transactions by hiding them inside vol-au-vent cases and staging a fake reception.

Last night a spokesman for Sócíété Générálé denied that Kerviel was overworked, insisting he lost the money after betting that the French were about to stop being rude, lazy, arrogant bastards.

Thursday, 24 January 2008

Brilliant Tsonga

I watched bits – well, I was supposed to be working, you know – of the Tsonga–Nadal Aussie Open semi on the telly this morning and I can truthfully say I have never seen anything quite like it.

Tsonga was overwhelmingly brilliant. It wasn't just a ferociously brutal display of tennis. It was a performance shot through with sudden shafts of subtlety and delicacy, miniaturist meets mugger. It was irresistible.

Nadal is a genuinely frightening player, jaw-droppingly competitive, astoundingly aggressive, a three-time winner of Roland-Garros. Yet he was left flat-footed and bemused throughout. He looked about as good as me.

That said, can Tsonga, notoriously inconsistent, sustain this level of brilliance? Who can say? He has defied all expectations so far. So why not once more? He has nothing to lose, after all, and plenty to gain.

No less pleasing, the wondrous Ana Ivanovic also won her semi today. She plays the sneerily snide Sharapova, a compulsive cheat and full-time moaner, in the final on Saturday.

You have my permission to boo and hiss when Sharapova makes her prissy way on to the court. even more when she goes off for a 'comfort break', which I guarantee she will do if she is losing. No snippy advantage is too small for her not to try to exploit.


That said, because every prediction I have made on this blog has been wrong, I am saying nothing about who will win either the men's or the women's titles.

But I know who I will be supporting.

And it sure as onions won't be the lanky-legs Russkie whiner.

Hain's administrative errors

While, of course, jubilant at Hain's long-overdue departure – though only from the Cabinet, note: the loathsome, oily twat is still an MP – and happily expectant that Harriet and wee Wendy will soon feel the noose tightening (oooh! Gordo, feeling nervy?), the overiding question of just what Hain thought he was up to remains.

Self-evidently, his use of a slush fund masquerading as a think-tank to hide the identity of his donors – and what kind of sad, sorry creep do you have to be to want to give money to a man as transparently on the make as Hain? – is clear evidence of, at best, an intention to deceive.

But did he really believe he could expect never to have to declare the money? Did he feel that, as a NuLab Cabinet minister, he could get away with this breach of the law indefinitely?

It was hardly a coincidence that his sudden admission in November that he had omitted to declare a donation of £5,000 came at exactly the moment Donorgate broke.

But why just the £5,000? There was another £103,000 undeclared. The likelihood that this had simply slipped his mind as a result of his terribly (self-) important Cabinet post is self-evidently zero. By the same token, it was no less certain that sooner or later he would have to admit to it. So why prolong the agony, why string it out?

Because he could never admit he had been rumbled? Because he is instinctively dishonest? Because he hoped that something, anything would step in to save him if he could drag the business out as long as possible?

The answer to all three questions is clearly 'yes'.

In short, here we are presented with a near-perfect example of the true copper-bottomed NuLab cunt: deceitful, mendacious and dishonest, concerned only for his own well-being. The wanker incarnate.

Importantly, all his crude calulations, designed only to save his own skin, have come to zero.

In other words, he is as inept as he is obviously corrupt.

So what did he think he was up to? What did he hope to gain?

Who cares? All I can say is that I hope he goes to prison, where he clearly deserves to languish.

Because that really will have the rest of the little shits running scared.

So, now for Harriet and wee Wendy.

Hypothetically speaking

Go here and click on 0750 under Today's Top Stories (on the right-hand side).

It is hilarious.

And this woman is Home Secretary?

It beggars belief.

Note especially this scintillating insight: 'It won't be hypothetical if and when it occurs.'

How very true. How very wise. But, unfortunately for her, 'it' hasn't happened. Ergo, 'it' remains hypothetical.

I am very taken, too, by her kind donation to us of a brand-new word: unhypothetical (aka 'real').

The bastard's finally gone

Hain's resigned from the Cabinet.

Thank fuck.

So much for 'administrative errors'.

Prison next with any luck.

Well, what a surprise!

If you break the law and you happen to be the government, what do you do?

Change the law, of course. Easy

Read about it here.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008


Newmania - may he live for 10,000 years (or longer, actually) - rightly wrapped me on the knuckles yesterday for my credulous claim that Gordo & Co were backing away from ID cards and that this was, I assumed, good news.

He pointed out that they were actually doing no more than reculer pour mieux sauter – in other words putting in place a tactical withdrawal, leaked to Tory papers (of course), that meant only that the presentation had changed, not the goal.

So I take it all back.

Him right. Me wrong. Brief moment of hope dashed.

Gloom re-asserts time-honoured grim, centre-stage role.

Good news at last?

Seems hard to believe but I think it might be.

The government from all accounts is backing away from ID cards. Of course, only a combined cretin/control-freak would ever have espoused them in the first place. Still, we must be grateful for whatever small crumbs are offered us.

Here is the full story.

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Just a thought before bed

Consider the following fundamental measures of the health or otherwise of any modern democratic nation, all of them directly dependent on the state.

In no particular order, they are:

Law and order; transport; health; education; accountability; security; local government.

Can anyone doubt that in Britain each has seen a calamitous decline over the last 10 years?

Let's list them in more detail.

Law and Order: A police force obsessed with pointless targets and incapable of imposing even the simplest expectations of the rule of law and matched by a manifestly inadequate penal system.

Transport: An 'integrated transport' policy that has produced hopelessly congested roads and ludicrously overpriced and unreliable railways.

Health: A 'national' health service that costs billions, emasculates doctors, empowers self-serving bureaucrats and kills its patients.

Education: Schools that consistently fail to match up to over-heated government rhetoric despite immense sums lavished on them and laughably low standards.

Accountability: A ruling class that consistently ignores the wishes of those who have elected it while simultaneously paying itself more.

Security: Armed forces, once the envy of the world, starved of funds yet expected to perform ever more (as well as to endure periodic visits from preening, vote-seeking turds, cf The Bottler).

Local government: Driven by inane targets, incapable of emptying dustbins, bent only only closing libraries to fund equal-opportunities 'initiatives' and lorded over by 'chief-executives' conscious only of the imperative of guaranteeing their pensions.

This is just for starters.

It does no more than scratch the surface of all that is corrupt, distorted and gruesome in 21st-century Britain. It says nothing of the shameless determination of the ruling party and its cripplingly inadequate leader to ignore its own manifesto promises to hold a referendum on the European Constitution, forcing on the country a treaty it knows is near universally loathed. It says nothing about the same government's readiness to lavish billions on a clapped-out bank in Newcastle so as to protect its vote there. It says nothing, too, about its willingness to pretend that blatant law-breaking on the part of its own members when raising funds for pointless internal elections can always be justified so as not to compromise its patently useless leader, in effect an institutional readiness to assume that laws passed by itself in the hope of embarrassing its opponents should apply only to these opponents.

It is a world scarred by quangos, reviews and consultants, one in which insane wastes of public money and a vast, bloated public sector are taken as read; by an immigration policy manifestly out of control (if 'policy' is not too polite a term for a world in which no one has any proper idea of the numbers involved); and by gargantuan government departments that regularly lose details of their clients. Above all, it is a world defined by government ministers whose default position is always to lie.

Can I stress this last point? They don't obfuscate. They don't equivocate. They don't even mislead. They lie.

It's what they do. It's what sustains them. It is their life-blood.

On the whole, I'd say there were serious reasons to feel depressed.

Welcome to the world of the Bottler's moral compass.

Gordo's Black Wednesday?

Here's a small hand grenade lobbed at the Bottler by Peter McKay in the Mail today, which contains the following elegantly aimed detonation:

We're now at the fag end of New Labour, which began, you'll remember, with the adman's lie about being "tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime".

Its leader, Tony Blair, is off making his fortune with an American bank and other moneymaking enterprises.

Nothing responds to Government action now - not the economy, not the health system, not our transport network, not the criminal justice system.

Living under Gordon Brown's Government is like being on a plane after the engines have died, like BA038 approaching Heathrow.

Can he get it over the airport perimeter fence before pancaking into a full recession and crisis of confidence?

You can read the whole thing here.

But here's the real thing, the equivalent of nuclear explosion which looks likely to vapourise the Bottler in his entirety, leaving behind not so much as a wisp of smoke. It's an offering in The Times by Anatole Kaletsky and is, in every way, devastating for the Bottler.

Monday, 21 January 2008

How to be a Bottler

The Bottler has apparently 'expressed ... growing disillusionment' that PMQs 'have become so noisy and bad-tempered that the public will be increasingly repelled'.

Even by his standards, that's rich. The man is serially dishonest, entirely unable to admit to any failing or shortcoming.

Thus, regularly made to look the clunking, cretinous clod he actually is at PMQs, he resorts to allowing 'aides' to plant transparently untrue stories about how, his moral compass all aquiver, the Bottler is saddened by the Chamber's descent into heckling and abuse, a descent in which he, the high-minded paragon, has played no part.

It's a lie. The truth is much simpler. He can't bear being laughed at or mocked. He can't bear the thought he isn't being accorded the reverence he so clearly considers his by right. Above all, he can't bear the thought that Blair was so much better at it than him.

So it's not his fault – well, nothing is, of course – that he is reduced to incoherent howls and grunts, endlessly stammering, frowning, twitching and glowering impotently.

How long before, regretfully, in the interests of the nation as a whole (ie him), he scraps PMQs?

Friday, 18 January 2008

Napoleon reborn

According to the Telegraph, the imperious Giscard d'Estaing has made it clear that Blair 'cannot be president of Europe' – and note please that he says 'Europe', not the EU but Europe itself.

Oddly, what he didn't say was that the reason was because, clearly, only he could be president. As is his obvious right.

So bog off Tone. Only former French presidents need apply. So long as they are Giscard d'Estaing, of course.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

What's holding Cameron back?

Watch the Bottler on PMQs and a consistent picture emerges. It is of a man who lacks not just any vestige of charm, one capable only of thudding his fist onto the dispatch box, jaws grinding fit to reduce his teeth to rubble, outrage bursting from every pore, but who cannot, will not, may not ever allow himself to answer any question directly.

The kind of thunderingly dull rumbling that results – of lowest inflation, record employment, lowest interest rates, difficult decisions, long-term prudence, global financial turbulence, compare our record to the Tories, higher spending, never been in better shape, NHS thriving, world class schools, vision for the future, etc, etc, etc., the whole endlessly, numbingly repeated – has been only too well documented.

But what, recently, has become is so striking is just how obviously bogus the factual bases for these claims are. At best, they are deliberate distortions; at worst, active lies.

The saintly Matthew Parris has twice highlighted Brown's outright falsehood that Dinky 'Dave' Cameron was Norman Lamont's 'principal' economic advisor in 1992. Fraser Nelson has similarly precisely skewered the Bottler's claims that inflation is at a near historic low.

But the interesting question is less why the Bottler persists in these transparent half-truths. It is why Cameron doesn't nail him for them.

A key reason for the landslide success of New Labour in 1997 was the relentlessness and ferocity of its attacks on Major's disintegrating government.

Why doesn't Cameron go for the jugular in the same way?

I am not sure I understand.

The Bottler is a sitting target.

Dancing around him with one eye on the BBC's reaction is not enough. Cameron needs to get the Bottler in his sights, take a deep breath, pull the trigger – and keep his finger on it.

La Bellissima Flavia ...

... lost her second-round match In Melbourne.

Oh, Flavia. How cruel you are.

She was beaten by a French girl, Virginie Razzano (who looks alarmingly like the Australian fast-bowler Sean Tait, ie ugly).

The score was 6-2, 5-7, 6-3, a valiant but characteristically doomed effort on Flavia's part.

Needless to say, Ana romped through her second-route match, swatting aside another Italian, Tathian Gabin (what is it with these useless Italian girls?), who not only has no one ever heard of but whose looks suggest a likely future as a professional wrestler.

Still, it would be ungallant of me not to post a picture of Flavia, who, whatever her failings with her racquet, is irresistibly beautiful. So here she is.

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Ana: stylist standing by, racquet strategically to hand

Black, black day yesterday with Andy Murray's first-round loss in the Australian Open.

Just as well I resisted the temptation to tell the world how certain I was he would make at least the semis.

Still, at least Ana won today, as did, albeit in a bit a of three-set struggle, my all-time favourite Flavia Pennetta. So time for another picture of the sizzling six-foot Serbian sex-bomb stunner.

If Flavia gets into the third round, there will definitely be a picture of her. Possibly even a video. Oh! Excitement!

Monday, 14 January 2008

La vedette de l'UMP

Blair has unquestionably worked his snake-oil, smoke-and-mirrors magic on this side of the Channel, his appearance at Sarko's UMP conference last week – surely not canvassing French support for your bid for the EU Presidency, Tone? – winning wow reviews from across the political spectrum in France (as well as reminding those on the other side of the Channel just why the Bottler is so clunkingly bad a public performer).

And it has to be said that it was exceptionally well judged: deft, delicate, self-deprecating and delivered with lashes of Tony-style charm.

Crucially, it was also in French, which I can tell you impresses the French no end. They are so resigned to the fact that their language has been permanently relegated to the third division of global tongues that any Anglo Saxon, let alone one with the obvious apparent stature of Blair, making even the feeblest efforts to talk French instantly wins them over.

Yet there is a laughably obvious truth here: that Blair's French is execrable. It is beyond awful, beyond atrocious. It is cringe-makingly, buttock-clenchingly bad.

Technically, Blair's set-piece public pronouncements in French are impeccable. Grammar, usage and vocabulary are all precisely crafted – and no less self-evidently the work of a native French speaker commissioned (and paid for?) by Blair.

But in every other sense, which is to say how you use the language to do more than buy a croissant or a newspaper, his French is self-evidently near non-existent. I seriously doubt Blair unscripted could conduct anything that approached even the simplest conversation.

The clod-hoppingly obvious clue is his accent, bad enough to make even the ghost of Edward Heath run for cover. Churchill himself might shudder. It lacks every French nuance.

This is French as if spoken by an Aztec. Or a Martian.

It's Arthur Daley stuff. And about as convincing.

Yet it is not only the French who love him for saying anything in their language at all. The British press are no less in awe. It's not hard to know why. Given that practically no one in Britain is capable of much more French than a gulped 'Merci', it has long been the case that anyone able to string together even half-a-dozen words in French is instantly hailed as fluent, a weakness 'fluent French-speaker' Tone has traded on shamelessly for years.

In short, yet another delicately delivered con trick. It's all wonderfully bogus. Put another way, it's yet another reason for the grimly mongolot Gordo to brood even more.

This is a link to Tony's latest offering, unfortunately not available on YouTube, hence this rather crude means to pointing it to those of you masochistic enough to want to see it.,,3680972,00-blair-plaisante-conseil-national-ump-.html

As a final thought, there is one senior figure in Britain who genuinely speaks French well, even if the accent is unmistakeably still there. It is the Queen.

Mind you, her German is even better.

(Of course, her husband's German is that of a native speaker. But let's not go there.)

UPDATE Thanks to Anonymous for pointing out that my original title – Le vedette de l'UMP – was wrong. It should be 'la vedette'. 'Tis the curse of Tony.

Saturday, 12 January 2008

Getting on with the job

Peter Hain, eager 'to get on with his job', dismissing suggestions that there had ever been a cover up about his electoral donations as 'absurd', is the epitome of the modern politician: mendacious, incompetent, shameless and vile.

Yet in the face of repeated revelations that this repulsive bird-brain is instinctively dishonest, laughably untrustworthy, self-evidently on the make and screamingly third-rate, he is maintained in his job as a minister of the crown by a prime minister, a deeply disturbed man who under no circumstances can admit to any failing, whose sole goal is to remain in office so as to reinforce his sense of entitlement to it and who therefore cannot be allowed to be damaged by the activities, for all that they are clearly criminal, by the grasping dullards he has surrounded himself with. And of course for Hain also read Harman, to say nothing of wee Wendy.

In any rational world, Hain would have been laughed out of office months ago. By the same token, Brown would have been tactfully directed towards the nearest lunatic asylum, where he would then be at liberty to rant to himself about his incorruptible moral compass.

Yet these gruesome inadequates, desperate to preen and enrich themselves at our expense, break any law they care to if it means they can strut around at our expense in their stupid suits and hideous voter-friendly ties before, pensions guaranteed, they can present themselves as wise elder statesmen and deserving recipients of EU-funded largesse.

It is sickening.

Friday, 11 January 2008

Rich, loaded, stinking – and obviously very stupid

I received an e-mail today – it's below – from a CHARMING young woman who's life has been scarred by terrible, terrible tragedy.

It is my clear, Christian duty to do what I can to help her. The fact that she also promising to pay me the best part of $7m is neither here nor there.

In order to rescue her as soon as possible from her desperate circumstances, I immediately replied with details of my bank account to allow her to transfer the money without delay and effect her escape to what I earnestly hope will be not just a new life but a much, much better one. Her welfare is all that counts.

This is what she wrote:

I am writing this letter with due respect and heart full of tears since we have not known or met ourselves previously.
I am asking for your assistance after I have gone through a profile that speaks well of you. I will be so glad if you can allow and lead me to the right channel towards your assistance to my situation now.

I will make my proposal well known if I am given the opportunity. I would like to use this opportunity to introduce myself to you. Well, I Juliet Kumassi 21years old girl and I know that this proposal might be a surprise to you but do consider it as an emergency.

In nutshell, My (late) father Mr. Wilson Kumassi was a very wealthy gold and cocoa merchant who based in Accra and Abidjan respectively. But he was killed along side with my mother during last two year's
Rabble attack and all his properties were totally destroyed.

However, after their death I managed to escape with a very important document (DEPOSIT CERTIFICATE (US$20.6m) Twenty million six hundred thousand U.S Dollars deposited by my late father in the bank which i am the next of kin.

Meanwhile, I am saddled with the problem of securing a trust worthy foreign personality to help me transfer the money over to his country and into his possession pending my arrival to meet with him.

Furthermore, you can contact the bank for confirmation and I will issue a letter of authorisation on your name, which will enable the bank to deal with you on my behalf.

I am giving you this offers as mentioned with every confidence on your acceptance to assist me or take me as your child and manage the money.
I am inclined to offer you 30% of the total sum as a mode of compensation for your effort after the successful transferring of these fund to your nominated account overseas

Conclusively, I wish you send me a reply immediately as soon as you receive this proposal.
I remain with the best regards
Juliet Kumassi.

Anyone like her e-mail address? She may have a brother or sister, after all, in equally desperate need. Possibly several. Cousins, too. Christ, there could be hundreds of them.

We must rally round.

Thursday, 10 January 2008

The loathesome Hain

Wonderful stuff here from Mr Eugenides on the liar and crook Peter Hain.

The man has broken the law. Why hasn't he been arrested?

On the other hand, so did Harman and wee Wendy and there are still very much at large.

Gloom all round.

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Excuses, excuses, excuses

Well, if blogging was light to non-existent over Christmas on the Daily Brute, that was simply the result of indolence/over-indulgence.

Since then, it's been the result of a burst of rather badly paid but nonetheless urgent work that even as fabled a magician as the Daily Brute can juggle only so far. Meaning blogging, however reluctantly, has had to be placed on hold.

So, apologies for my silence.

Still, here, by way of consolation, if any, is a further picture of the ravishing Ana Ivanovic, who, as I am sure you ALL realise, is the love of my sad, benighted life along with, of course, la bellissima Flavia Pennetta.

That said, perhaps I should make clear that, however devoted I am to the stately six-foot Ana, my heart, wrenched though it is, must always be Flavia's, not least as she isn't taller than me.

She also has bigger tits than Ana.

On the other hand, it is much easier to find pictures of Ana.

So here she is again.

Sigh. I love them both.

Cruel, cruel world.

Story of the year (so far)

Read it here.

Brilliant. These guys are seriously brainy.

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Laughable attempt at credibility

Here it is.

No further comment needed.

Monday, 7 January 2008

Bad sight of the week ...

... was clearly the Bottler being interviewed by Andrew Marr by the still supplicant BBC over the weekend.

Who did he think he was fooling?

This is a serious question.

The poor old Bottler is transparently no more fitted to be PM than he is to strip off, whang a couple of coconuts on his chest, jam on a straw wig, slip into a grass skirt and sway around – Balls on the zingy guitar – pretending to be a South Sea beauty.

He'd be no less unconvincing – and probably rather less grotesque.

He isn't just a fraud. He is a nutter, a man encased in increasingly desperate fantasies.

Please, please, please. Someone, anyone, take him away. Beg, plead, implore. If only for his own sake.

Back again ...

... for 2008 and straight in at the deep end.

Writing this morning in the Telegraph, fatty Heffer makes the case for smaller government.

He says: Whatever the motivation, the business of [government] intervention takes time, requires manpower, costs money, and is not - I would argue - always inevitably productive.

This is a curiously lukewarm statement from the otherwise admirably trenchant Heffer.

Surely, what he should have said is: Whatever the motivation, the business of intervention takes time, requires manpower, costs money, and is - I would argue - always inevitably counter-productive.

Which is why those who advocate more and bigger government, ie every member of Britain's useless, power-mad, half-witted government, are irredeemably thick.