Death by 100 cuts – the latest from a kukri knife

The picture looks ominous for Gordon Brown. The two opposition leaders together flanking the victorious Joanna- the shape of politics to come, perhaps? I still think Gordon Brown has a sporting chance of election victory if the turndown turns up quicker than the jeremiahs think, but the odds are lengthening – longer even than 66 to 1 perhaps, as security minister Lord West insisted he didn’t wager. But a very different book may be about to open on the opposite course – on Brown even surviving as leader until the poll. Candid friend Mike White in the Guardian lists retreats on ID cards, a national database for web users, Titan prisons and now over the Gurkhas, the biggest rebellion since MPs voted on the expansion of Heathrow. White asks: is the tipping point for Brown’s leadership about to happen? A leader’s authority can be whittled down over lesser issues than the economy… Adds Tonight, bowing to the Commons vote, the lippy Immigration Minister Phil Woolas pledged that no Gurkha would ever be expelled from Britain and promised new rules for admitting Gurkhas to the UK by the summer. This seems to mean a total government climbdown to Joanna Lumley and friends.

Not the biggest defeat ever, as analyst Philip Cowley says, if rebellion is defined as a vote against the government but shaping up to it, with 90 Labour MPs abstaining. And as the BBC’s Gary O’Donoghue notes, this is only a prelude to what could be disaster for Brown in the vote on reforming MP’s expenses. “Completely and utterly ridiculous”. That was how a sleep-deprived Gordon Brown reacted in Warsaw this morning to suggestions that his handling of the controversy over MPs’ expenses had not been a total triumph.” reports the BBC’s Nick Robinson,nobly filing en route to Old Trafford for the Man U v Arsenal match, as he presented the picture of a Prime Minister in denial.

BTW Willie Mc Crea has just let the world know of his hand in the government’s defeat.

“The DUP was pleased to line up alongside parliamentary
colleagues from all parties to ensure that the government was
defeated in the House over their disgraceful plans. This vote
vindicates the value of our independent, unfettered approach in W
estminster. I hope now that the government will indicate retreat
from their plans towards the brave and courageous Gurkhas and
their families

Could Willie be making a local political point here, by any chance?


  • fair_deal

    “Tonight, bowing to the Commons vote”

    Where those not promised before the vote in an attempt to stop defeat?

  • Brian Walker

    Fair Deal, not all the specifics. The concessions came just before 8 pm, well after the vote. The promise not to expel any Gurkhas and to bring forward a timetable came before the vote. But as Woolas told MPs:”In light of the decision of the House, I am bringing forward the date for determination of the outstanding applications to the end of May”.

  • The Raven

    (takes eye off ball for a second)

    Isn’t Joanna Lumley fab for 62…?

    *cough* sorry about that…

  • Brian Walker

    Comments on women’s appearance is inappropriate on Slugger

  • The Raven

    You opened the gates. I merely walked through…


  • Brian Walker

    .. and indeed ARE inappropriate, as is bad grammar

  • Mick Fealty


    Worth mentioning this is a bit of a coup for Clegg, who’s been getting very little public play… It’s very rare to hear Cameron play second fiddle to anyone these days… he needs a few more of those if he’s going to successfully protect his stake in the Commons…

    As for Brown, well… another time, when I’ve got the energy…

  • wise up, move on or bugger off

    The odds on a Tory/Lib Dem coalition must be shortening. Still pretty unlikely given that ZaNuLab’s self-implosion continues unabated. Indeed if anything it’s getting worse – at this rate they’ll be beaten into third!

  • The Impartial Observer

    Cameron and Clegg either side of Joanna Lumley..

    Jammy Beggars!!!

  • willis


    “Comments on women’s appearance is inappropriate on Slugger”

    “OK, Slugger is about NI politics and culture, I’m from there and this is culture and..damn! the Times has stiffened my resolve and made me stretch a point – (sorry, just can’t help the doubles entendres ) . As the piece says: “ Keeley Hawes’ Eighties detective in Ashes to Ashes is so straightforwardly fabulous that I defy anyone to resist her””

    I realise that “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds”

    I just hope it wasn’t an age thing.

  • Comrade Stalin


    I think Brian is being humourous, having posted at least one “look at the lovely totty” threads lately. Once a Bel Tel staffer, always a Bel tel staffer.

  • willis


    I think you may just be right!

  • blinding

    Some one with the tech ability should alter that crazy u-tube vid of Gordo Brown smiling manically with the image of a Gurka slipping a kukri knife under his chin midway the manic grin.

    Browns got the whiff of political death about him perhaps he always had it, and that is why the Labour party chose touchy feely Tony when the choice was between the two.

  • Dewi

    Throughout my career I’ve found that the second rate leaders surround themselves with third rate acolytes. The only thing more astonishing than appointing Jacqui Smith as Home Secretary is retaining her as Home Secretary.

  • blinding


    Or is it that the acolytes of sucessful leaders just do not get branded as third rate.

    Maybe an ass kissing acolyte has to pick the right leader or be lucky.

  • The Raven

    …but anyway, back to Joanna Lumley….


  • blinding

    The Raven said

    “but anyway, back to Joanna Lumley”

    Beautiful woman alright and fighting for a cause here that is not cuddly animals that many other celebreties would plump for.

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