Monthly Archives: August 2008

Jim Pickard

The next cabinet meeting will be in the West Midlands on September 8.

This is a break from the usual tradition of holding it at No 10 – and will be the first of more cabinet gatherings in other parts of the country. The idea is to listen (and be seen to be listening) to the concerns of punters out there in the real world. Read more

Jim Pickard

For a level-headed news story on Gordon Brown’s position on windfall taxes see this morning’s FT.

The government is considering upping the proportion of carbon permits which energy companies will have to buy in the latest phase of the EU’s emissions trading scheme.  (Until now they have been given the permits for free). Read more

Jim Pickard

Chutzpah today from the Tories after the breakdown of talks between EDF and British Energy.

Charles Hendry, shadow energy minister, has put out a statement declaring that: “Time is not on our side, as the government has left it very late to give a firm direction for nuclear.” Read more

Jim Pickard

One year after the arrival of Hips and the public aren’t impressed.

A new YouGov poll has found that only 5 per cent of people think the new, compulsory sales packs have delivered benefits. Another 68 per cent said they had failed to make a positive difference. Read more

Jim Pickard

TV coverage of Miliband this week showed a young, smooth, tall, even handsome man with energy and charisma. There was little sign of humility or backtracking on the idea that he was preparing the ground for a tilt at the top job.

Yesterday he seemed reminiscent of Tony Blair at the peak of his powers, complete with the enormous cheesy grin. Read more

Jim Pickard

Treasury officials are NOT working on potential plans for a windfall tax. That’s what I’m being briefed.

Of course that doesn’t mean that Gordon Brown may not bow to pressure in the autumn and put it in the pre-budget report. It could be a vote-winner. Plenty of siren voices are urging such a move (unions, backbenchers, junior ministers, maybe even some cabinet ministers). Read more