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5 minutes ago @ http://www.conservativ... - WATCH: Johnson - 'I ho... · 0 replies · +1 points

Well that was an embarrassing car crash.

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - There's no good reason... · 0 replies · +1 points

It rather says something about the histrionics in this place, that an article about national security, the appointment of a SpAd as National Security Adviser (and the consequences of that), is almost ignored in the comments where people prefer to display how panicky and thin-skinned they are, and Theresa May merely asking a pointed question is enough to send them round them bend.

The Frost appointment is concerning and the Neville-Jones experience is no help. Neville-Jones was a Shadow Minister, and then became a Minister in government (Security and Counter-Terrorism). If she had retained her National Security Adviser title it would have been as a Minister, not a SpAd. She would therefore have come under the Ministerial code, be able to give instructions to civil servants and officials, and be accountable to Parliament for her actions. Previous NSAs (Ricketts, Darroch, Lyall-Grant and Sedwill) have all been civil servants operating under the Civil Service Code. Then are also able to give instructions to officials, are politically impartial, and give advice to the PM and to the Cabinet. They could also be called in front of the Intelligence Select Committee. Frost is neither a Minister nor a civil servant. He is a SpAd, accountable only to the PM. Parliament is not able to ask him questions. He is not able to talk to others about what he is doing. He does not provide impartial advice to the Cabinet, as he is the PM's man alone. Under the code for special advisers he shouldn't be giving instructions to civil servants or security officials. We learnt this the hard way in the run up to the Iraq War. Most people think Alastair Campbell's behaviour over the "dodgy dossier" then was somewhere between a grave error and utterly reprehensible. The PM seems to think that it was a perfectly reasonable way to go about things. Unless Frost has the title but not the actual job - i.e. he really will be a SpAd and won't sit atop the intelligence services. That then leads us to ask who is going to do the actual job?

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - There's no good reason... · 0 replies · +1 points

But he won't be a Minister. Then he'd have to be accountable you see, and we can't have that.

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - There's no good reason... · 0 replies · +1 points

The damage Sedwill risked to national security?

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - There's no good reason... · 1 reply · +1 points

That would be the decision pushed through by the PM and Cummings, with help from Raab, Patel and Truss, in teeth of opposition from an isolated Ben Wallace. Are we now blaming that on Sedwill as if the actual Ministers on the NSC don't have any brains of their own?

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - There's no good reason... · 0 replies · +1 points

He surrendered Northern Ireland to the EU, and persuaded a nominally Unionist government to desert the DUP and vote for it en masse.

2 days ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alan Mak: Britain shou... · 0 replies · +1 points

Does that extend to keeping supplies originating in the US flowing to other allied/friendly nations?

3 days ago @ http://www.conservativ... - WATCH: Johnson's Build... · 1 reply · +1 points

Just waiting for all the Johnson fans to tell us that they've been huge supporters of HS2 all this time, and are appalled previous governments didn't build it faster and overrule local opposition more quickly.

3 days ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alan Mak: Britain shou... · 3 replies · +1 points

Is there the slightest indication that the Americans want to behave collectively, or would act collectively in another crisis?

3 days ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Profile: Franklin Dela... · 0 replies · +1 points

Because Johnson isn't a Reaganite. He likes expanding government and splashing the cash on big projects.