Village People: 19/06/2010
Saturday 19 June 2010
Trouble with the Foxes
The recent scare about a fox attacking two baby girls in Hackney, east London, has brought back memories for a certain former Labour councillor who had to deal with a similar problem.
A lady arrived at his surgery complaining about a fox family that was creating an upsetting amount of noise and mess. The councillor asked the lady what she wanted to be done about them. She said she wanted them removed from the neighbourhood, but he pointed out that this would only lead to them creating a nuisance somewhere else, a point she accepted.
He then suggested gassing them instead. She thought this was going a bit far, but agreed that it would certainly solve the problem. It was only later that the unfortunate councillor learnt that they had, in fact, been discussing a human family called Fox.
When the government's new Office of Budget Responsibility (OBR) produced its first economic forecast last Monday, the very first Labour MP to comment was David Blunkett, who denounced it as a "self-fulfilling prophecy". He was dominating the airwaves for most of the day, rubbishing the OBR's work.
If this seemed odd, it was because Mr Blunkett was never an economic spokesman, which left people wondering what the OBR had to do with him.
Here is a possible answer. When he was Home Secretary, Mr Blunkett was accused of using his position to speed up an application for a visa for his child's nanny. The allegation was investigated by Sir Alan Budd. Mr Blunkett was personally cleared but he felt compelled to resign. The head of the Office of Budget Responsibility is that self-same Sir Alan Budd. Revenge, as they say, is sweet.
Congratulations are due to Jacob Rees-Mogg, the recently elected Tory MP for North East Somerset, who became a father this month for the third time. The youngster is named Thomas Wentworth Somerset Dunstan Rees-Mogg. He is not called Somerset in honour of his father's seat, but after his maternal grandfather, Somerset Struben de Chair, who was elected a Conservative MP in 1935.
Another ancestor whose name the little mite perpetuates is Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Stafford, a favourite of Charles I, who was sentenced to death by Parliament in 1641. His mother is Helena Anne Beatrix Wentworth Fitzwilliam Rees-Mogg, the granddaughter of Earl Fitzwilliam. Why do people say modern Tories are posh?
Leading by example
When George Osborne sets out his austerity budget on Tuesday, he will be copying an example set by the Canadian government, which cut its deficit by asking: "What needs to be done by government and what we can afford to?"
Later in the week, politicians will head to Canada for the annual summit of the world's richest nations. While he is there, Mr Osborne might like to take off his shoes and socks and paddle in a 10cm-deep pool constructed for the summit as an adornment to the £1.3m G8/G20 "Experience Canada" pavilion. The Canadian government has admitted that the pool alone cost more to construct than 40 per cent of Canadian families have to live off for a year. "Canadians wanted leadership, and all they got was a fake lake," said Michael Ignatieff, leader of the Liberal Party.
Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts
Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and no-one was arrested
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
Concerns raised phenomenon is threatening resort's image as a family destination
I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title
Peter Biaksangzuala died from his injuries in hospital on Sunday
The X Factor's judges colourful outfit was mocked by Simon Cowell
- 1 Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
- 2 Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
- 3 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 4 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
- 5 Lynda Bellingham dead: Loose Women presenter dies after battle with colon cancer
Sophia Loren: How I rejected Cary Grant and 'pulverised' Marlon Brando with my eyes
Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake report claiming that the street artist's identity has been revealed
'Russian submarine spotted' by Swedish military off coast of Stockholm
Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Oscar Pistorius sentence: Athlete's wealth and notoriety provoke an overdue debate on South African prisons
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Sorry Judy Finnigan – Ched Evans is no less sickening than an alleyway rapist
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Workers 'could be forced to pay £5 a week' to get benefits
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
Amal Alamuddin calls for the return of the Elgin Marbles from Britain: 'Injustice has persisted for too long'
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