Conservative conference diary

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Indy Politics

* DAVE'S WINDMILL

After overcoming planning objections to have a windmill stuck on top of his home, "Sunshine Dave" has privately said he's unlikely ever to fulfil his pledge. "The police will probably rule it out on security grounds," he's confided to friends.

* LOCAL VIEWS

Boris Johnson raised the notion of Muslim fundamentalists introducing sharia law in Bradford or Tower Hamlets. He was speaking about "localism" , an idea which would give more power to local councils. "Are we ready for localism if it means sharia law?" he asked. "Maybe we are. Maybe the smart thing would be to do just that."

* SLIP UP

Republican John McCain was dodging the US presidency question on the BBC's Today programme. But he was less shy over dinner with Dave. He was apparently heard saying: "I've launched my campaign here."

* QUOTE OF THE DAY

"I would like to see measures put in place where ordinary people can make a difference in their ... everyday lives and not be taxed up the arse while they are doing it." Jeanette Winterson, attacking Gordon Brown for applying VAT to her eco-friendly water recycling plant at her house.

* GOOD DAY

Simon Calder The Independent's travel editor, told the Tory conference: "I am a socialist." But he still won the vote on cheap air travel.

* BAD DAY

George Osborne, who appeared to imply that Gordon Brown was "faintly autistic". "There's no need for him to apologise to Gordon," sniffed a source. "But he should apologise to the thousands of people affected by autism for trying to turn their condition into a term of abuse."

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