Monday, September 24, 2007

Morning all

It's morning in Bournemouth.

The sun is shining again, doubtless in recognition of the day ahead.

Debate rattles on about the election, with gossip reporting that at least one senior Cabinet Minister has the staff on standby for an Octoberfest. We'll see.

A good breakfast fringe meeting with Ruth Kelly and others about cities and transport, which certainly suggested that the CrossRail project in London, first mooted at the start of the last century, may be closer than ever - an announcement could be pencilled in for sometime over the next twelve months for the start of the 'biggest construction project in the Northern hemisphere.'

Today offers a smorgasbord of excitement, kicking off with Gary Titley, the leader of the European Parliamentary Labour Party. He was at a meeting late last night sponsored by the EU and he became almost angry about the lack of support from key stakeholders for the European Treaty, which he argues is about the management of the EU, not a constitutional issue. He certainly feels that the unions, for example, have benefitted from EU innovations over things like working regulations, but have been less than vocal in their support. Mandy was also there, praising the Germans, but being diplomatically cooler about the French. He did say that we had a great chance to influence the future path of Europe, as Merkel and Sarkozy are far more open to listening to the British than Schroder and (particularly) Chirac ever were.

Also last night, I ran into Tom Watson and introduced myself. He told me that he had met Hamer Shawcross (now in recess), but was tight-lipped on Hamer's identity, beyond saying that it was the person you'd least expect it to be.

Also, I'm a little disappointed - only scraping into the top 50 of Labour bloggers after making the top 30 last year. Bob Piper is still there, but they've been grossly unfair on the Ministry of Truth - Unity deserves a top 10 spot for his vituperative, well-researched arguments.

1 comment:

Simon said...

Do you not think MoT can be somewhat verbose? I have an ambition to one day finish reading one of his posts, much as I one day hope to complete Ulysses. I sometimes think Ulysses would be the easier task.