Saturday, June 28, 2008

Scotland 1 England 0

Well that's the score in Labour leaders the countries have lost so far this year. I say England for Gordon Brown as we are now devolved and, thankfully, he has less and less influence in Scotland now since, the Labour Party was sent into a tail-spin at last years Scottish Elections. For once I am sincerely hoping that England can equalise, and very soon as well.

Wendy was the archtypical over-promoted politician and was really only typical Scottish Labour lobby fodder. She resigned from one ministerial position when it became rather obvious she was ill-equipped for the job.

Her promotion to leader of the Scottish Labour party was another complete farce especially when she managed to muck it up completely by accepting illegal donations and not correctly reporting others. Her punishment for this was very much the tap on the back of the hand.

Now we come to her actual resignation. According to Wendy

My pursuers have sought the prize of political victory with little thought to the standing of the parliament. Some may feel they have achieved a political victory but wiser heads will surely question 'at what price? It is clear that vexatious complaints will continue to dominate the headlines as long as I remain Labour's Scottish Parliamentary Leader. I cannot ask Labour supporters in Scotland for further forbearance.
She later told BBC Scotland that she thought the parliamentary process had been
"cynically abused" by political opponents who had used "investigation as political tactic". Ms Alexander admitted she had made mistakes but said there had also been "politically-motivated" complaints".

Now if she can't accept she has done wrong that's OK. She is, like Gordon Brown, a Son/Daughter of the Manse, who have a strange outlook on the real world, that what they believe is right and what others believe is wrong. This means she can lie about things but still be right just as Gordon can keep coming up with his "Brownies".

Wendy would like us to believe that the SNP have forced her out of her position. In reality much of the leaking and information about her donations and problems has come from inside the Scottish Labour party, the fact that other parties have decided to "help" her out of her position is just not surprising. I suspect, that in reality, Wendy has had a visit from the men in "Grey Kilts" who have quietly suggested that she should resign her position. I suspect she will not be very happy about this and, as such, may resign as an MSP as well at a suitable time.

I for one will not be sorry to her gone, especially as hopefully now I won't have to listen to the wee gobshite anymore!

James Mitchell: Wendy Alexander's resignation ends a leadership which failed to live up to expectations | Comment is free |

Friday, June 27, 2008

ComRes report record Tory lead

Comres has Tories on 46 Labour on 25% and Libs on 18%. Lead of 21%.

Mike Smithson on PB.Com says
A key element in the detail and one of the reasons why the poll is so good for Cameron’s party is that 74 per cent of Tory supporters say they are “absolutely certain” to vote. This compares with 58 per cent of the Labour supporters and 50 per cent of the LDs. As Andrew Hawkins of ComRes points out: “The Tories are ahead of Labour amongst every age and social group and in every region except Scotland.”
Another wonderful anniversary present for Gordon! » Blog Archive » ComRes report record Tory lead

A Simple Manifesto for Freedom

Here is the Manifesto that Davaid Davis will be using for his By-Election in Haltemprice and Howden. It is very straightforward and very clear on its message.

What I Stand For

  • British fundamental freedoms – including liberty, free speech and trial by jury.

  • British justice - firm but fair.

  • Protecting personal privacy from unjustified intrusions by the state.

    What I Stand Against
    • Draconian terrorism laws that make us less – not more – safe.
    • The database state – careless officials losing our personal information.

    • A surveillance society – council snoopers spying on local residents.

    • ‘Thought crimes’ and political correctness stifling free speech and peaceful protest.

    10 Policies to Protect British Freedom

      1. Reverse 42 days pre-charge detention – a ‘PR coup for Al-Qaeda’.
      2. Scrap ID cards – put the £19 billion savings towards a Border Police Force and other security measures.
      3. Immediate reversal of the ban on free speech outside Parliament
      4. Protect the right to trial by jury.
      5. Stop neighbourhood spies using powers that should rest with the police and MI5.
      6. Use intercept evidence to prosecute terrorists – but restrict bugging by local councils.
      7. Replace 1 million innocent citizens on the DNA database with the serious criminals left off.
      8. Make CCTV more effective (80% is unusable) – strengthen punishments for privacy abuse.
      9. Slash the 266 separate powers the state has to force its way into the home.
      10. Launch an independent inquiry into the government’s serial database failures.

          Yours faithfully,

          David Davis for Freedom - News > Manifesto

        Nimrod families take legal action

        BBC News Scotland reports that some of the families of those killed in the crash of the RAF Nimrod XV230 are to sue the government. Demands for legal action have been led by Graham Knight, whose son Ben was among those killed when the aircraft crashed in Afghanistan two years ago.

        I have blogged on this a number of times and I am not surprised by this turn of events. The government see it as an embarrassment and try to put their heads in the sand and ignore the problem hoping it will just disappear. The coroner has already ruled that the planes are "not airworthy" and should be grounded.

        Apparently lawyers will argue the basis of the case would be in relation to Article 2 of the Human Rights Act the thrust will be that the airmen were sent into the theatre of war ill-equiped.

        Mr Knight told BBC Scotland:

        "Fourteen men died on that plane and apart from apologies nothing has really been done about it and although the planes have been deemed un-airworthy, they're still flying. Had it been a bus company and it had been an un-roadworthy bus, legal action would have been taken against the bus company. I feel that something needs to be done as nobody has been brought to task."

        Let us only hope that by doing this it will keep in the minds of the current government that they cannot keep cutting back defence expenditure and still send our soldiers into action ill-equipped. The Nimrod is just the toip o f the iceberg.

        BBC NEWS | Scotland | Nimrod families take legal action

        1066 and all that

        Anyone else notice the strange fact that Labour managed to only amass 1066 votes in the Henley by-election last night. Will this be the arrow in "King" Gordon's reign or will the NHS come to the rescue again?

        H.T. Woody on and my wife for noticing it.

        Battle of Hastings - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

        The sound of music for Glenbuchat

        Ryntaing in Glenbuchat

        The BBC report the following

        The songs and history of a remote Aberdeenshire community are being brought back to life after lying undiscovered for generations. The "Glenbuchat ballads" are being performed in the local village hall. Sometime in the early 19th Century, the Reverend Robert Scott, minister of the parish, compiled a collection of traditional ballads. The minister did not give the precise locations of where he collected his ballads, or name the performers, but the texts are unique and appear to have been drawn from oral sources. As such, the ballads revealed a great deal about the nature of traditional music at the time they were collected. The collection included one of the best-known ballads, "The Bonnie Lass O' Fyvie", and provided an invaluable insight into the culture and history of the area.
        Many years ago my Great-great Grandfather, William Mcrobbie, left Glenbuchat to go to the Northern Lights of Old Aberdeen. His family had lived in Glenbuchat for the previous 100 years and some of my direct family finally left the Glen in the 1920's with some more distant relatives living there until the 1950's. My Great-Great-Great Grandfather, Harry Mcrobbie, died in 1881 at his farm at the far far end of Glenbuchat and the above picture shows where his farm was.

        The BBC add
        One of the performers, Marc Ellington, said: "Aberdeenshire has been 'mission control' for our ballad resource for a couple of hundred years." He added: "Versions of some ballads have been recorded by people as wide-ranging as Bob Dylan and the Grateful Dead. "They are a cornerstone of major cultural influences globally and we haven't, I don't think in Scotland, embraced these ballads enough. "They are an amazing resource."

        Strange to think that my relations might have helped sing these ballads almost 200 years ago and have helped them stay alive.
        Harry Mcrobbie and families gravestone in Strathdon churchyard

        MEP's Huge snouts in Huge Trough alert

        Please watch this Video investigation about MEP's pay and allowances. It needs no explanation!

        H/T The Brussels Journal.

        Red Faces for Labour - beaten by Greens and BNP

        On the first anniversary of the disaster of making Gordon Brown their Leader, Labour has another disaster as they come 5th in the Henley by-election, beaten by the Greens and the BNP. The coffers of Labour will also be a bit shorter as they have lost their deposit as well. Mustn't chortle., well not too loudly.

        Now playing: Norah Jones - Broken
        via FoxyTunes

        John Howell: Conservative 19,796
        Stephen Kearney: Lib Dems 9,680
        Mark Stevenson: Green 1,321
        Timothy Rait: BNP 1,243
        Richard McKenzie: Labour 1,066
        Chris Adams: UKIP 843

        Tories outpolled Lib Dems more than 2:1

        C 56.95% (+3.46)
        LD 27.85% (+1.84)
        Grn 3.80% (+0.54)
        BNP 3.58% (dns)
        Lab 3.07% (-11.68)
        UKIP 2.43% (-0.07)

        BBC NEWS | Politics | Conservatives hold on to Henley

        Thank God for Private Health Care

        According to the Guardian

        "The long awaited review into the future of the NHS by Lord Darzi will next week propose a big boost in the size of independent nurse-led provision of primary care, similar in ambition to the rise of independent foundation hospitals."
        Now who is waiting for this review is a good question. The government most likely as they will be looking for any measures that will cheapen the provision of health care. Well apparently Darzi has discovered a cracker, Nurse-led provision of primary care. That's right get rid of the GP's, you remember them the Doctors who have trained for over 10 years to give you proper care. Instead we will have Nurse's with Protocols, tick boxes to work out what is wrong with you. Doesn't that make you feel happy.

        Who cares, as from 1st July, I have Private Health care, provided by my company. I will be seeing Doctor's and not nurses. This is how Labour will make the NHS cheap, they will frighten everyone who can afford it into getting Private Medical Care.

        P.S. My wife is a nurse, I have nothing against proper nurses who provide care for patients.

        UPDATE: Dr Crippen (NhsBlogDoc) on this.

        NHS review to push for more nurse-led care | Society | The Guardian

        Wednesday, June 25, 2008

        Incompetence and Systemic failure at the heart of this government

        As the Shadow Chancellor, whilst commenting on the Poytner Report into the loss of Child Benefit data, said this afternoon the loss of data by HMRC is symptomatic of nothing less than

        "incompetence and systemic failure at the heart of this government"
        They were "a guide to how not to govern this country",
        Alistair Darling called for a
        "change of culture" across Whitehall so that "security is first and foremost in people's minds"
        following a string of further data breaches, including officials losing lap top computers.

        Darling also tried to say that private organisations were no better than HMRC this is refuted by a single line in the report which says
        HMRC has completed an assessment of where it stands today vis-à-vis ISO27002(International Standard for Security Framework) and has concluded that it lags well behind the majority of large private sector organisations...
        As usual this government tries to lie its way out of trouble that it has caused. Initially Mr Darling told us, when he briefed MPs on the loss in November,
        a "junior official" had been responsible for posting the information "contrary to all HMRC standing procedures"
        Then again Alistair Darling is not the root cause of the problem, we only have to look at who was responsible for HMRC for 10 long years, yes of course that man of courage Gordon Brown, who left Alistair Darling on his own to give this apology and statement.

        The Poynter report on the Child Benefit data loss by HMRC has no less than 45 recommendations all of which have been accepted. This points to complete management breakdown and a total lack of responsibility in the department.

        Let's look at some of the factors
        • Some DSSM and IDG policies lacked sufficient detail and strength to guide staff.
        • Inadequacy of removable media and encryption policies.
        • Better implementation and enforcement of policy is required.
        • Policy could be made more accessible and better communicated.
        • Appropriate authorisation.
        • Method of data transfer.
        • Prioritisation of operational delivery over information security.
        • Lack of policy awareness.
        • Lack of training.
        • Accountability for the ownership and guardianship of data.
        • Lack of clarity surrounding authority requirements.
        • Relations with the NAO.
        Now that's a fair list and leads us to easily conclude that this was a disaster waiting for an opportunity. In fact as the report says, even after the loss of the 2 discs, staff still sent out essentially the same data with no protection.

        The wider review makes it very clear what the problems are:
        • Information security, at the time of the incident, simply wasn’t a management priority;
        • Even had it been a priority, HMRC’s organisational design and the governance and accountabilities underpinning it would have made it extremely difficult for it to be felt as such;
        • Even with a more suitable organisational structure, the fragmentation and complexity that has accompanied the changes that HMRC has had to absorb makes information security difficult to control;
        • HMRC’s information security policies were inadequate and those that they had were unduly complex and not adequately translated into guidance or training for the junior officials who needed them;
        • HMRC continues to operate processes that hark back to a paper-based, rather than a digital, world; and
        • Morale is low in HMRC and management needs to continue to focus on engaging with staff as the department embarks on a period of further change.
        In other words Information Security just wasn't part of the work ethic. This in an establishment that is handling secure data each and every day. Poynter says in his report
        As regrettable as the Child Benefit data loss incident was, one positive may yet flow from it. It may provide the burning platform for these transformations, recognising it as an imperative rather than a luxury.
        This is key to understanding why the whole sorry situation occurred. The whole HMRC system is so fragmented and so full of holes that the transfer of data between agencies and within its own systems is unbelievably complex. Only by transforming this system can it ever be truly secure. Until then the whole process needs to be tightly controlled to ensure a somewhat acceptable degree of security. Some facts that bring this to life. HMRC
        • Operates some 650 different systems;
        • Has a further 4500 Business Developed Applications (mostly Microsoft Excel & Access), of which 550 have been classified as business critical by Business Units;
        • operates from some 900 sites/offices;
        • Sends out some 300 million items of mail a year.
        It is no small wonder then, that when the Director of Data Security imposed a ban on non-encrypted bulk data transfers following the data loss incident, several data transfers were uncovered that senior management in HMRC was not aware were happening, including at least three regular downloads of the entire child benefit database – the same information that was reported lost in November 2007. These were regularly downloaded onto non-encrypted media and put into internal mail.

        The report also highlights some of the more inefficient waysand outmoded ways HMRC handles data such as
        Although the volumes have declined a little, HMRC continues to rely heavily on paper-based communications. Last year, for instance, HMRC sent out around 300 million letters and mailings to its customers, an average of 8 per household and 68 per business. The media it uses for data transfer is similarly archaic. For example, the Magnetic Media Handling operation in Longbenton, Newcastle, accepts all media (reel to reel tape, cartridges, floppy discs, CDs etc.) on which employers submit their end of year returns and could be designated a museum if the criteria were variety of media no longer generally used (media, incidentally often associated with systems incapable of creating encrypted data). Whilst part of the reason for HMRC continuing to accept such media is in response to customer demand, I strongly believe that HMRC should be stronger about which media it will and won’t accept – particularly when this can drive whether or not data can be encrypted.
        As well as the media and the channels that HMRC employs, its modus operandi similarly harks backs to a pre-digital era. For instance, HMRC never seems to start from the base of the information it has. Good examples are the self-assessment process for employees where the majority of people copy their information from the P60 and P11d given them by their employer – information that HMRC already has – and Tax Credits where the application form starts from scratch although HMRC nearly always has details on that customer. Both of these examples contribute to information security risk by requiring unnecessary exchanges of data and by creating islands of information that require additional exchanges to keep them synchronised.
        So not only ancient ways of taking in data but also requiring data that they already have more than once which cannot lead to anything but problems.

        The recommendations of the report are nothing less than a damning indictment of the HMRC. They are long and cover
        Strategy, 14 recommendations.
        People, 7 recommendations.
        Process, 21 yes 21 recommendations.
        New Direction, 3 recommendations.

        All of these recommendations have been accepted. It will take time to implement them all. Until then the security of HMRC data, our data can only be suspect.

        Statement: CHX 250608

        Recommendations from Child Benefit CD data loss

        Recommendations from the IPCC investigation of the Child Benefit data loss are as follows, I have tried to highlight what they really mean. In one word CLUELESS.

        The report does not seek to make detailed recommendations, nor does it comment on the developments needed to ensure that HMRC's systems and practices meet the challenges involved in modern-day data handling. HMRC did not have a clue what they were doing and had no idea how to deal with computer based data.

          1. HMRC should review and develop a strategic working relationship with the NAO in respect of any audit of its resource accounts. HMRC should implement a strategy of communicating the detail and requirements of an audit to HMRC staff in order to facilitate audit work. Bothe agencies are clueless on how to work together. HMRC should work with the NAO to sort out how they communicate and stop losing data and providing data not required
          2. HMRC should review the security controls and protocols associated with generating large volumes of data, and the subsequent handling of that data in whatever format both internally and on disclosure outside the organisation. Clueless. HMRC have no security in place and need to work out how they are going to secure their data.
          3. HMRC should develop a data security strategy, training strategy and communication strategy for all HMRC staff to raise awareness and understanding of data protection and data security, and in line with the principles of the Data Protection Act. HMRC have no strategy for data security or training for people in data security.
          4. HMRC should review and develop its role and responsibilities as data controller within the meaning of the Act in order to demonstrate a management commitment to information security throughout the organisation. Clueless. HMRC should read the Data Protection act and conform with it. Senior Management need to realise that they have to do some work to justify their salaries.
          5. Consideration should be given to sharing this investigation report with the Information Commissioner, who is responsible for data protection issues under the Act. Clueless. HMRC should be prosecuted as a business under the Data Protection act and if this was a normal business would be heavily fined and hung out to dry. Resignations of senior IS staff etc would be expected.
          6. Where breaches of security are discovered, HMRC should report these promptly so that any remedial or recovery action can be taken. This did not occur in this particular case. Clueless. HMRC did not have a clue what they were up to.
        If HMRC were a run of the mill business they would now be under severe pressure. The whole management of their IS department is to blame. Where was the proper audit of this system.

        This is the sort of organistation which is or will be responsible to
        • Look after your health records (aka The Spine)
        • Look after your DNA
        • Look after ID cards

        I wouldn't trust them with a single bit. They are clueless and hopeless. This is beyond parody that an enterprise entrusted with our vital data have no apparent strategy for the handling and securing of data. Both management and employees are at fault here. The management for not providing the correct structure for the proper running of the business and employees for not ceaseless complaining about this lack of structure.

        Alistair Darling has called this a "Cultural" problem. I call it criminal irresponsibility. Now guess who was responsible for the merging of the two departments and was in charge of them for over 10 years. Yes, of course, it was our Jonah, Gordon Brown. He is the man ultimately responsible for this problem, however he will have retired to his Bunker again to sulk whilst leaving his underlings to face the music. A true man of Courage.

        IPCC publishes report into missing HMRC data CDs (full version)

        Tuesday, June 24, 2008

        Armed Forces 'stretched beyond their capabilities'

        Just after hearing the sad news of the death of another soldier in fighting in Afghanistan, we now have the news from the chief of the Armed Forces, Sir Jock Stirrup, that the two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have left the Forces

        "stretched beyond the capabilities we have"
        Now this will not be surprising news to many people who have been following the news of the conflicts, but to Des Browne it may come as surprise as he keeps telling us there are few if any problems with our forces or their equipment.

        This is the first time the most senior officer in the British military has expressed such grave doubts about the struggle faced by troops fighting wars on two fronts, though a number of other senior Officers have expressed a similar opinion a number of times.

        According to the Telegraph, Labour ministers have repeatedly denied suggestions that the two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have left the Forces overstretched, and opposition MPs said Sir Jock's candid remarks have made that position untenable.

        As I reported earlier other senior members of the Armed Forces have given a similar stark warning and have been disciplined by Gordon Brown. What can Gordon do now? The problem is that, unlike the sheep we call Labour MP's, the senior Armed Forces Officers have a duty to both their Men(and women) and this country and regard this higher than pleasing our inept Political Leaders.

        Let us hope that our Military Leaders can sort out this problem as their Political Masters are incapable of running the proverbial piss-up in a Brewery.

        Britain's Armed Forces 'stretched beyond their capabilities' by fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan - Telegraph

        Tories at record 20-year high in ICM Poll in Guardian

        According to the ICM poll in the Guardian

        Gordon Brown faces a damning verdict from voters ahead of his first anniversary in power. It suggests that his prime ministership has been a disappointment: 74% of those questioned say that he has been a change for the worse compared with Tony Blair, and only 24% think Labour has a chance of winning the next election while he remains leader.
        Headline figures are Con 45 (+4) Lab 25(-2) Lib 20(-2).

        This should put to bed the thoughts that what David Davis is doing will be bad for the Conservatives. The cowardly decision , yet again, by Gordon Brown has backfired on him as usual.

        One other quote from the Poll as follows
        Voters also think Brown has failed personally as prime minister. Asked to rate his performance on a scale of one to 10, voters give Brown only 3.94 on average. Almost a quarter, 23%, give him a one.
        You would laugh but this is a desperate time for our country with this truly inept man in charge. He has become a joke and we must get rid of him to allow this country to get back to be where it belongs in the world.

        Desperate reading for Gordon as he comes up to his anniversary, but will he get the message and get the Pickfords van in.

        Tories at record 20-year high in new Guardian/ICM poll | Politics | "

        Is this you?

        Do you, or anyone you know, look like this photofit. If so detectives are waiting to hear from you.
        Despite looking like a 'teenage chav' , Police, who circulated the image in Pontypool, South Wales, say the man they are looking for is aged between 40 and 50 white, 5ft 10 inches tall, clean shaven with a narrow chin and broad across the shoulders. According to Gwent Police
        This picture has been issued as it is the only description we have at this stage.
        I'd better go and turn myself in then.

        The world's worst photo-fit? Police issue baffling image of wanted robbery suspect Mail Online

        SNP to ban Tour Drams?

        According to the Press and Journal, our local rag, the current anti-alcohol drive by the SNP could mean

        Distilleries could be barred from serving a dram to visitors at the end of tours under Scottish Government proposals to tackle alcohol abuse.

        Scotch whisky bosses believe tough restrictions on promotional activities could undermine one of Scotland’s biggest earners and the tourist industry in rural areas like Speyside.

        Ministers are looking at preventing licensed premises from engaging in promotional activities to encourage people to buy alcohol for consumption off the premises.

        The suggestion is included in the framework to tackle alcohol abuse which has alienated the drinks industry and retail trade but won the support of doctors and anti-alcohol campaigners.

        Now if, like me, you are a fan of the odd nip the thought of having had a tour of a Distillery and then not getting a taster at the end is just not playing the game. This is half the reason for being on the tour to have a wee "refreshment" at the end. I can see that going down really well with the American and Japanese tourists.

        Seriously the problem of alcohol abuse will not be stopped by these sort of measures. In this country we spend 18 years learning that alcohol is illegal and all of a sudden you can have as much of it as you can drink. This breeds the binge drinking type culture.

        Our problem is that we need to approach the whole use of alcohol differently and make it a part of growing up. The sensible use/introduction of alcohol to family life in the early teens and the appreciation of what it can do tends to lessen the problems from binge drinking and brings about a more relaxed and open attitude to drinking. It is no longer a "sport" on its own but a part of relaxation, to be enjoyed more for the taste rather than the effect. The banning or partial banning of a product just tends to lead to its misuse and/or criminal acts.

        Drams may be banned on tours of distilleries - Press & Journal

        The true price of fuel

        This sad story of the untimely death of a woman who had called the police after seeing someone stealing diesel from her tank may soon not be a uncommon story in the UK of today. According to one of the insurers thefts of fuel are already up 30% this year.

        I read the story yesterday with a thought that this couldn't happen around my area in Scotland which sees little in the way of crime. Then I noticed that in the local policing report that there had been 3 reported crimes related to stealing fuel tanks or similar in our area. Police advice was to tighten security on your tank which are now very valuable commodities. Our last bill to half-fill our tank was over £400 and a normal tank of fuel must now be pushing being worth over £1000. Not bad for a simple crime which just requires a little brawn and a suitable vehicle. Most tanks are not secured as they rely on the actual weight to make them difficult to steal and they are typically positioned in areas out of site of the actual householder.

        Woman dies and her son is injured after chasing fuel thieves - Crime, UK - The Independent

        We're all Crap and we know it

        According to Rachel Sylvester writing in the Times

        A year after Gordon Brown became Prime Minister, the Labour Party seems to have adopted the Gerald Ratner approach to its leader. Ministers, backbenchers, party activists all declare that the product is “crap” but they still want the voters to buy it at the next election.

        Unfortunately this time Labour, unlike what happened to Ratners, will grind on until they have their final death throes in the 2010 election rather than being gone before you can eat a M & S Prawn Sandwich.

        More seriously this article is about the continuing decline of Labour's finances and whilst Gordon hasn't come out and said "We are Crap" his serious financial backers already know they have a bad product and are not willing to invest or bankroll the Labour party. Backers are not going to give money to the party whilst Gordon is the Leader. According to Rachel
        At the moment the money is running as fast as it can away from No10.
        Let us hope that Gordon will soon see the writing on the wall and do a runner as well.

        Update: Nice to see this article is the subject of's latest thread after I highlighted it last night. It has been mentioned about 4 times since then by various posters.

        Who will finish off Gordon Brown? Follow the money Rachel Sylvester - Times Online

        Monday, June 23, 2008

        It's all Maggie's fault..

        Read this article in the Telegraph today about how Gordon (new, improved, with added) Brown will today blame Margaret Thatcher for Britain's low rates of social mobility and accuse the former Conservative Prime Minister of creating a lost generation by "denying many children the chance to progress".

        This is of course from the school of the "little boy did it and ran away" excuses, that Gordon has tucked up his sleeve. Gordon and his cronies have now had 11 years to sort out what they see are the problems and blaming Maggie after his hilarious "Tea with Gordon" meeting is just so funny.

        Gordon will of course never realise that demonising Maggie is not going to work now. 15 years ago it might have worked, but now it is history and many of today's voters will hardly even know who she is. To Gordon she might be the anti-hero but those who do know anything about history will now realise that without Maggie this country would have had third-world status by now.

        Gordon cannot work out that his policies are just not working and it is time for a new government. Even Graham Norton thinks he's clueless.