1.45pm Tim Montgomerie on CentreRight: Americans on edge of seats as Brown flies to Washington
1pm Local Government:
11am Charlie Elphicke on CentreRight: "Why is it not on for a man who cares passionately about the fight against crime to sponsor a crime fighting telly programme aimed at keeping us all safe, but OK for an Islamic conference to be held at a state funded primary school where banned cleric Omar Bakri, who passionately wants to harm us, rages down religious hate on our country?"
Conservatives will introduce repeal bill to scrap Labour’s attacks on historic liberties
"The Conservatives are pledging to introduce a "repeal bill" to scrap laws that erode civil liberties, senior party figures said at the weekend. The bill, which would remove parts of anti-terror and anti-crime legislation thought contrary to civil liberties, would form part of an election manifesto, said Dominic Grieve, the shadow home secretary." – Guardian
But The Economist’s Bagehot sees confusion in Tory thinking: "Mr Grieve was obliged to admit that he wasn’t absolutely sure what "fewer rights, more wrong", a new slogan from Chris Grayling, the latest shadow home secretary, had meant. They flounder when they try to explain why exactly the Tories propose to scrap the Human Rights Act."
If Britain controlled its borders it would not need so much internal surveillance – Melanie Phillips in the Daily Mail
George Osborne promises to support “any legal measure” to get Fred Goodwin’s pension back – conservatives.com
Jeff Randall reminds us that there are bigger issues than Fred Goodwin: "Even if Mr Brown were to get his way, and Sir Fred ended up as a modern-day William Wallace – emasculated, eviscerated, with his head placed on a pike atop London Bridge – Britain’s deep-rooted financial stress would not be alleviated. Our thirst for vengeance, though understandable, is distracting us from a terrible reality: the economy is in worse shape than anyone in power is prepared to admit, and public finances are completely out of control." – Telegraph
The government’s flagship £10bn business lending guarantee scheme is weeks behind schedule – FT
Bank of England set to pump cash into economy to avoid deflation – Times
Printing money is the logical way ahead for Tories – Philip Blond in the FT
Boris Johnson considers public electric care hire scheme
"First it was public bicycles he was bringing to the streets of London. Now Mayor Boris Johnson is looking at pinching another green travel idea from the French – a public electric car hire scheme. The project would allow casual car users to pick up a publicly-owned, battery-powered, zero-carbon vehicle in one part of the city and easily drop it off in another." – Independent
Labour MPs want Mark Pritchard MP gagged
"Conservatives have been urged to gag a Midland MP after he revealed the taxpayer was underwriting a £12 billion defence project in Wales which will cost hundreds of Midland jobs." – Birmingham Post
Gordon Brown has described protectionism as a "road to ruin" amid warnings the global economic crisis could lead to a new "iron curtain" – Sky
Mandelson warns Post Office rebels that they are gifting the Conservatives
"The Labour rebellion over plans to part-privatise Royal Mail risks endangering jobs and pensions and could help the Conservatives win the next general election, Business Secretary Lord Mandelson warned yesterday." – Independent
60% believe school standards are falling – Guardian
"The use of random lotteries to allocate places at the most popular schools could be scrapped after Ed Balls, the Schools Secretary, admitted that they were "unfair"." – Telegraph
And what about public sector pay?
"Yesterday, the CBI confirmed what has been evident for some time: that private companies are freezing pay, even slashing salaries, as they struggle to survive the recession. Is the public sector doing the same? Like heck it is. Nurses, teachers and police officers will all be getting pay rises of between 2 and 3 per cent this year and next year, too. Life is even better for the top brass." – Ross Clark in The Times
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