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Topic: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-20 11:25:13 and read 1442 times.

The lack of trust in our Government must be growing even more after todays blunder when someone downloaded documents of 25 million child benefit claims,including bank accounts but them on to 2 discs,and sent them by TNT and un-registered, now lost.

your thoughts.

And would you trust the Government with anything now this has happend? my trust in the Government is a big fat O.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-20 11:39:51 and read 1434 times.

Hmm. Well, whilst it staggeringly inept (and illegal, I trust charges will be brought?) to behave so cavalierly with personal records, it's a bit much to lay the blame squarely on the government because one junior staff member did something truly dim.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: BHXFAOTIPYYC
Posted 2007-11-20 11:47:50 and read 1425 times.

Is it even possible get so much data onto just 2 disks?

Strangely this fiasco doesn't surprise me. What would surprise me would be someone actually being held accountable. Privacy in the UK has become a joke, and I'm not simply referring to the country having more CCTV cameras that any other per head. Even the DVLA sell your name and address for £2.50. Privacy International ranked the UK 33rd in their 2006 survey (Germany was # 1, China was # 36). And they're still trying to flog you the benefits of ID cards to help stop illegal immigrants and benefit fraud.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-20 12:28:21 and read 1405 times.



Quoting Banco (Reply 1):
I trust charges will be brought?)

well the police are are making their own investigation, but the question is where are those discs now? bare in mind that immigrants are working for the government, due to the home office blunder, and i recon that the discs could of been sent un-registered deliberate so they end up in the wrong hands. The way things are in this day in age,anythings possible.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-21 09:06:44 and read 1354 times.

I hope that the Government get a heavy penulty for this,they cant ignore it or brush it under the drinking bar carpet because its in the public intrest, 25 million of them that want the government pay for such a pathetic blunder.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-21 09:11:52 and read 1353 times.



Quoting Express1 (Reply 4):
I hope that the Government get a heavy penulty for this,they cant ignore it or brush it under the drinking bar carpet because its in the public intrest, 25 million of them that want the government pay for such a pathetic blunder.

Hmmm. The government's money is our money in the first place. What kind of penalty would you have them pay? Fine themselves?

What it has done is to pretty much kill off the bloody stupid and unnecessary idea of a national ID card. It's inconceivable that it would get through Parliament now. Don't expect an announcement, but it'll be put on the back burner.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Helvknight
Posted 2007-11-21 11:56:45 and read 1326 times.

Apparently they know where the disks are:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/11/21/hmarc_ebay_auction/

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-21 13:29:34 and read 1316 times.



Quoting Helvknight (Reply 6):
Apparently they know where the disks are:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/11...tion/

Someone is taking the p..s,i don't think this is for real.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-21 13:33:49 and read 1313 times.



Quoting Express1 (Reply 7):
Someone is taking the p..s,i don't think this is for real.

You think?

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-21 13:36:17 and read 1310 times.

well if you don't think its a fake,then contact the BBC and tell them what you found.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: LAXspotter
Posted 2007-11-21 13:37:01 and read 1310 times.

This is simply disgraceful, gross negligence by the Government, and putting millions at risk.  worried   mad 

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Express1
Posted 2007-11-21 13:42:26 and read 1309 times.



Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 10):
This is simply disgraceful, gross negligence by the Government, and putting millions at risk.

I know but to have a website pretending to say they found the discs but not seen the data on them is also disgracefull,if they were one of the 25 million involved they wouldn't do this.

dave

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Oly720man
Posted 2007-11-23 02:35:12 and read 1280 times.

Just as a matter of interest. Given that, apparently, all the data was sent out because it would have cost too much to the "business" to filter out the unnecessary information..... how much would it have actually cost to crunch the db? What are we talking? A couple of hours? I presume that all the data is in one db and I assume it's not rocket science to pick a couple of fields from one db and create an output file from them.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/7106987.stm

It says: "I must stress we must make use of data we hold and not over burden the business by asking them to run additional data scans/filters that may incur a cost to the department".

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: GDB
Posted 2007-11-23 02:49:10 and read 1276 times.

If you think only the public sector are inept, careless, in IT and info security, you are very, very wrong.
It's a malaise right across the country.

Most likely they are in some government office somewhere.

However, not too good that the current PM, as Chancellor, pushed the merger of the (once) two departments involved, gave them much more work and slashed staff by over 25%

A friend who worked in the whole benefits agency systems, was not at all surprised this has happened, he cited that so many new laws are passed, often badly worded, that those implementing them spend a lot of time having to chop and change to account for the changes.

The whole mess with benefits, is a direct result of getting rid of Frank Field in 1998.
He was tasked, by Blair, with a complete overhaul of this whole massive series of agencies, to both simplify and reduce costs, to make it fit for todays world.
Field, who as a MP, represents one of the most poverty stricken areas in the UK, is an expert in this area.
But, guess who undermined him from the start, eventually forcing him out with a mix of obstruction, hostile briefing, plain sulking at his mere presence.....it was the then Chancellor, Gordon Brown.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 04:17:50 and read 1260 times.



Quoting GDB (Reply 13):
The whole mess with benefits, is a direct result of getting rid of Frank Field in 1998.

It was always going to be a non-starter though. The idea of a junior minister saying what was going to happen to the Treasury was impossible whoever the Chancellor was.

The problem they have with this lost data (I still can't believe they've lost the records of half the population), is that if they insist on blaming the actions of a junior member of staff, then the government cannot ever make the claim that data in the future is safe, because they can never know the detail. So whenever they mention ID cars or anything similar, the possibilty for the same thing to happen is there. If they do say they take responsibility, then the Prime Minister and Chancellor would have to resign - clearly not going to happen.

It's just one damn thing after another at the moment, and the government are now in serious trouble. Last night five (FIVE!) former chiefs of the Defence Staff personally attacked the Prime Minister in the House of Lords for his attitudes and policies towards the military. Quite extraordinary. Then we have the whole Northern Crock fiasco - and Alistair Darling has now said the government will cover any financial losses through fraud for the lost data. That's an insane thing to come out with, the cost of that in any worst case scenario beggars belief. the government simply couldn't afford it - literally.

Add to that a revitalised Tory party, where Cameron is regularly besting an increasingly unimpressive Brown at PMQs, whilst George Osborne's "Get a grip" assault on the hapless Darling definitely resonated across the country, and there is the whiff of decay about the whole thing.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: GDB
Posted 2007-11-23 05:30:26 and read 1242 times.

This will, should, kill off ID cards, unless Brown is that obstinate. It's said he has a bee in his bonnet about bringing them in.
If he still tries to, Cameron has an ace to play 'if elected, I will scrap the ID cards' .

Why the obsession?
I think they are terrified that another major terrorist attack, will sweep them out of office as they'll be blamed.
But I don't know anyone who does not blame those sickos who actually did the attacks, maybe stuck in the Westminster/Press bubble has convinced Brown and co otherwise.
I know some blame Iraq etc, but most do not, I'm sure of that, whatever they think of foreign policy.

Not that ID cards will even stop an attack, didn't in Spain after all.
With the record on info security, an ID card scheme might even help to facilitate one.

As for the ex Defence cheifs, bit much to carp now once they've got their nice warm seats in the Lords, what happened when they were still serving?
As it happens, both are right, defence spending has increased, for the first time since the mid 80's, under this government, but it is still not enough given both the operational commitments and the need to get big ticket projects through, projects that will be vital assets for decades to come.
It should be 3% but will the public accept this, if money has to come from somewhere else?

My own view is that if money can be found for the stupidity of bankers, the recent 3 year spending settlement can be further boosted too, for defence.
It does annoy though when the media compare spending with 25 years ago, that was during the Cold War, when commitments in sheer numbers were much greater, on land, sea and air.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: 777236ER
Posted 2007-11-23 05:37:09 and read 1239 times.



Quoting Banco (Reply 14):
It's just one damn thing after another at the moment, and the government are now in serious trouble. Last night five (FIVE!) former chiefs of the Defence Staff personally attacked the Prime Minister in the House of Lords for his attitudes and policies towards the military. Quite extraordinary. Then we have the whole Northern Crock fiasco - and Alistair Darling has now said the government will cover any financial losses through fraud for the lost data. That's an insane thing to come out with, the cost of that in any worst case scenario beggars belief. the government simply couldn't afford it - literally.

All this is true, but none of it is particularly bad for the government. In the case of Northern Rock, it's not the government's fault, and in fact the government and BoE have done probably the absolute best thing they could. Consider what the Thatcher/Major governments would have done in such a situation: the bank would either be bust or nationalised.

Former military personnel critising the government for lack of defence spending isn't at all new, it's happened every week since newspapers were invented.

As for this fiasco, the government don't come off looking particularly inept. The Tories don't say how they would handle things any better, and pithy soundbites would be great...if people could remember the name of the person who said it. Where's Cameron been this last month?

However, this looks like the end of ID cards for at least this government and the next. It was already downplayed by the Brown government and with fears about data security there's no way public opinion will swing in favour of ID cards.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 06:20:44 and read 1235 times.



Quoting 777236ER (Reply 16):
but none of it is particularly bad for the government.

Oh, it is. It's creating the impression of ineptitude, something the electorate punish more than anything else. Opinion polls can change, and the situation is certainly recoverable, but make no mistake, the government ARE in trouble, and all of this IS bad for them. Remember the mid-nineties? Small story after small story, none of them in themselves a major issue, but it creates the impression that events control the government, not the other way around. If the economy is indeed heading for choppier waters, then the government are in the shit.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 16):
In the case of Northern Rock, it's not the government's fault, and in fact the government and BoE have done probably the absolute best thing they could. Consider what the Thatcher/Major governments would have done in such a situation: the bank would either be bust or nationalised.

Partly true, but that's not the point. There's no way, even under Thatcher, that Northern Rock would have been allowed to fail. The government's response has been the only one they could have made; however, this is going to be a festering sore for months, if not years to come. It might have been better had they nationalised it, politically - at least that would have been a short term story. Now this is going to go on and on, and questions about the very light regulation (in general, a good thing) in the City and how Northern Rock's directors could steer such a risky course will be asked again and again. Then there's the issue of all the public money involved, and how much will come back.

It's a disaster for the government. Not, except very indirectly, of their own making, but politically, with every mistake which will inevitably be made in the coming months, extremely damaging.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 16):
Former military personnel critising the government for lack of defence spending isn't at all new, it's happened every week since newspapers were invented.

For five former CDS's to come out and personally criticise the incumbent Prime Minister is completely unprecedented. It is NOT normal politicking. Given the unpopularity of the war in Iraq, it is again a pinprick to government that creates the impression of them being controlled by events.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 16):
As for this fiasco, the government don't come off looking particularly inept. The Tories don't say how they would handle things any better, and pithy soundbites would be great...if people could remember the name of the person who said it. Where's Cameron been this last month?

You must be joking! Check the opinion polls for the last couple of days. Whether that lasts or not is a moot point, but at this moment, right now, the public absolutely squarely blame the government for it. And this affects HALF the population! It's not some minor oversight, it's political dynamite. And they can't win, either. If they blame a junior official the public rightly want to know how the bloody hell a junior official even gets access to the data, and if they don't, it's even worse. The merger of Customs and the Inland Revenue is a deliberate government policy, and whether the intricacies of blame are in the right place, the public know damn well that this happened to a department created by the Prime Minister himself - and it's just the latest debacle there as well.

As for the Tories, if you think the question of how they would handle things better is remotely relevant, then you're in dreamland. Oppositions never win elections, governments lose them. The public, with a limited knowledge of and interest in politics, merely see the soundbites on PMQs. Brown was awful this week. Cameron didn't go for the kill (probably didn't need to, or should do, given the gravity of the matter) but that's not the point. What the public saw on the news was Brown trying to blame the Tories, and given the absolute fury about this out there, that was entirely the wrong tactic. Cameron's response that it was "pathetic" to try to blame the opposition would absolutely have chimed with the electorate. It was, and it was a poor response by the PM.

Equally, Osborne's "Get a grip" comment, again, on all the news broadcasts, would have rung true. The impression the government are creating is of one in chaos. In a different way to how Osborne meant it, they really do need to get a grip, and soon.

I wonder at the sanity of the government in bringing in HIPS next month. That has all the hallmarks of being a major, negative news story, given that just about everyone hates the idea. More negative press.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 16):
However, this looks like the end of ID cards for at least this government and the next. It was already downplayed by the Brown government and with fears about data security there's no way public opinion will swing in favour of ID cards.

Don't forget that a lot of the legislation has already gone through. So don't expect a policy announcement on it. It'll just be put on the backburner.

And then we come to the question of the period of time terror suspects can be held for questioning before charge. You would think that any extension beyond 28 days is dead in the water, after the former Attorney General said he would have resigned had it gone to 90 days (whether you believe him in that or not), after the current Director of Public Prosecutions said it wasn't necessary, and after endless numbers of Labour backbenchers have made it clear they are deeply uneasy at the idea. Surely, surely the government don't intend to press ahead with what can only be a humiliating defeat? Yet that's the impression they're giving. One can only hope that the whips knock some sense about what is possible into Number 10. It ain't going to get through the Commons, and the Lords is a complete non-starter.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: 777236ER
Posted 2007-11-23 07:23:39 and read 1225 times.



Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
Oh, it is. It's creating the impression of ineptitude, something the electorate punish more than anything else. Opinion polls can change, and the situation is certainly recoverable, but make no mistake, the government ARE in trouble, and all of this IS bad for them. Remember the mid-nineties? Small story after small story, none of them in themselves a major issue, but it creates the impression that events control the government, not the other way around. If the economy is indeed heading for choppier waters, then the government are in the shit.

The big difference between the government now and Major's government was that the problems now are for the most part not government-caused. Not even the strongest government opponent can't lay Northern Rock on them, totally different to the scandals of the 90s.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
There's no way, even under Thatcher, that Northern Rock would have been allowed to fail.

Are you sure? Bear in mind this is the woman who employed Nigel Lawson and approved his 1988 budget and abolised monetarism. The government was burnt severely after they nationalised NMB, they wouldn't have done it again.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
It might have been better had they nationalised it, politically - at least that would have been a short term story

Nonsense. Nationalising the bank would have spun up the story even more. The Tories would immediately (and correctly) say this was a return of Labour of old. Nationalising the bank would put tax payer's money at significant risk, with any return coming from selling off the company bit by bit. There's a huge risk there, and it almost always loses money for the national bank (see NMB and Continental Illinois). What the government doing is probably the best thing politically and economically. By allowing the BoE the freedom to make its own decisions, the government is absolved of blame. They're not ignoring the bank (they're propping it up with tax payer's money) but they're not nationalising it, with the horrendous burden that gives the government. The Treasury also has to avoid lending unsecured money to the bank - if NR's book is as strong as everyone says it is that shouldn't be a problem though.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
For five former CDS's to come out and personally criticise the incumbent Prime Minister is completely unprecedented. It is NOT normal politicking. Given the unpopularity of the war in Iraq, it is again a pinprick to government that creates the impression of them being controlled by events.

I don't agree with that. Look at the BBC website or others to see ample evidence of people like the Royal British Legion and Sir Richard Dannatt critising the government - it's been happening pretty much constantly since the war in Afghanistan. The unpopularity of the Iraq war has already been shown to be irrelevent, there was an election after the war which Labour won convincingly. Brown has reacted well to this latest criticism, prioritising NHS treatment is a fantastic sound-bite, and his budgets of past and tour of Iraq and Afghanistan appeared much more military-friendly than Blair.

What does Cameron do? Sends a letter to Brown saying Des Browne shouldn't be Defence and Scottish secretary. Not a particularly resounding attack on the government! This is a non-issue.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
You must be joking! Check the opinion polls for the last couple of days. Whether that lasts or not is a moot point, but at this moment, right now, the public absolutely squarely blame the government for it. And this affects HALF the population! It's not some minor oversight, it's political dynamite. And they can't win, either. If they blame a junior official the public rightly want to know how the bloody hell a junior official even gets access to the data, and if they don't, it's even worse. The merger of Customs and the Inland Revenue is a deliberate government policy, and whether the intricacies of blame are in the right place, the public know damn well that this happened to a department created by the Prime Minister himself - and it's just the latest debacle there as well.

The outcome of this will depend on what happens. If there's any evidence of fraud, Darling will go and the government will be in trouble. If not, it'll slip from the news.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
I wonder at the sanity of the government in bringing in HIPS next month. That has all the hallmarks of being a major, negative news story, given that just about everyone hates the idea. More negative press.

I'm not sure about that. Everyone hates the watered-down version, even the people that called for the packs in the first place. The Home Condition Report is the useful bit, and the one consumer watchdogs like Which? want.

Quoting Banco (Reply 17):
And then we come to the question of the period of time terror suspects can be held for questioning before charge. You would think that any extension beyond 28 days is dead in the water, after the former Attorney General said he would have resigned had it gone to 90 days (whether you believe him in that or not), after the current Director of Public Prosecutions said it wasn't necessary, and after endless numbers of Labour backbenchers have made it clear they are deeply uneasy at the idea. Surely, surely the government don't intend to press ahead with what can only be a humiliating defeat? Yet that's the impression they're giving. One can only hope that the whips knock some sense about what is possible into Number 10. It ain't going to get through the Commons, and the Lords is a complete non-starter.

72% of the public support 90-day detention. The government know full well it won't get through the Houses, it won't come to vote. It's obviously a (very successful) way of making Brown look tough on terror.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 08:56:41 and read 1213 times.



Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
The big difference between the government now and Major's government was that the problems now are for the most part not government-caused. Not even the strongest government opponent can't lay Northern Rock on them, totally different to the scandals of the 90s.

What part of "the public are blaming them for it" are you struggling with?

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
Are you sure?

Of course. Thatcher wasn't stupid. Bringing down the entire banking system would hardly have been a "good" thing to do, would it?

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
Nonsense. Nationalising the bank would have spun up the story even more.

First of all, I said "might". Secondly, and the bit you've missed, is that it would certainly have spun the story up, but only short term. Northern Rock is going to fester for months.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
I don't agree with that.

Name another time it's happened.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
The outcome of this will depend on what happens. If there's any evidence of fraud, Darling will go and the government will be in trouble. If not, it'll slip from the news.

Not even Labour MPs think that.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):
72% of the public support 90-day detention. The government know full well it won't get through the Houses, it won't come to vote. It's obviously a (very successful) way of making Brown look tough on terror.

The public also quite like the idea of bringing back hanging too. What would be remembered would be a government in turmoil. Nothing else.


You seem to be viewing things through the rose-tinted spectacles of a die hard Labour supporter. If you can't see the problems, then you'd better bloody well hope the government can, because otherwise they're going down.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Moo
Posted 2007-11-23 09:14:39 and read 1211 times.



Quoting 777236ER (Reply 18):

72% of the public support 90-day detention. The government know full well it won't get through the Houses, it won't come to vote. It's obviously a (very successful) way of making Brown look tough on terror.

Have you got a link to support that, as everything I have read and seen suggests the total opposite?

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 09:28:30 and read 1205 times.



Quoting Moo (Reply 20):
Have you got a link to support that, as everything I have read and seen suggests the total opposite?

Even if he hasn't got a link, from memory that sounds about right, to be honest. Rather depressing that the public like the idea, but I would think he's got the figures pretty much spot on.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: GDB
Posted 2007-11-23 09:43:48 and read 1202 times.

I do not support the 90 day detention, I'd also like to see some other liberty restricting legislation of recent years, rolled back.
I understand the motivations of bringing them in, but, it's becoming a slippery slope.
Living right near a very major terrorist target, (LHR), working there too, nearly all my social activities in the Major target, London, using the transport system already twice targeted, (including tonight, to Kentish Town to see The Pigeon Detectives), I am not afraid of terrorism, not a bit, I'm not brave, just normal, like most people.
Yes, you might be a tad more alert, but since when have bombs here been new?

If there are concerns to help investigations, change the law on wiretap admissions in evidence.
Otherwise, we'll have to live with it, nothing new there, Zeppelins, Luftwaffe, IRA, now this bunch, fuck it, why change for these bastards?

The government are in trouble, worse, some of these woes can be traced back Brown's time as Chancellor.
Did you see him the other week in the Commons? The Great Clunking Fist shaking in impotent rage?
That's going to be an iconic image, it certainly shocked me.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 09:50:34 and read 1198 times.



Quoting GDB (Reply 22):
Did you see him the other week in the Commons?

His recent performances have reminded me of Matthew Parris' mantra - that you know a Prime Minister is in trouble when he reverts to listing achievements instead of addressing (not answering, they never do that) the question.

Trouble is, Brown isn't the Commons performer that Blair was. Blair was brilliant at PMQs, even when in difficulty politically he was never anything other than outstanding. Brown's "clunking fist" (I bet he wishes Blair had never used that phrase) doesn't measure up to that. Cameron, being the new boy, barely laid a glove on Blair. He's besting Brown most weeks. Now that doesn't necessarily mean that much if all else is going well - William Hague was the best of all the recent leaders at the despatch box - but when the government is in difficulties, it gets a wider audience on the news broadcasts.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: 777236ER
Posted 2007-11-23 10:53:35 and read 1187 times.



Quoting Moo (Reply 20):

Have you got a link to support that, as everything I have read and seen suggests the total opposite?

http://www.yougov.com/archives/pdf/DBD050101009_1.pdf

Quoting Banco (Reply 19):

First of all, I said "might". Secondly, and the bit you've missed, is that it would certainly have spun the story up, but only short term. Northern Rock is going to fester for months.

But it's not going to fester in the government's back pocket. Nationalising Northern Rock means the government has to cope with different, conflicting stakeholderes like customers, shareholders, the Bank of England and taxpayers. Had they nationalised it the bank would have probably gone the way of National Mortgage Bank - years and years of the government running the bank down, selling off bits of it to everyone, never making back the initial capital pumped into it. NMB went on for something like 6-7 years! It would be politically disasterous, not least because there would be job losses in economically deprived areas of the country, of the government's doing.

They have distanced themselves politically as much as possible from the bank, which is the cleverest thing they could have done.

Quoting Banco (Reply 19):

Name another time it's happened.

Name another time the country has gone to war based on piss-poor intelligence, or lies, with protests in the streets of London? Labour and Blair were re-elected after that.

Quoting Banco (Reply 19):
Not even Labour MPs think that

Backbench Labour MPs don't run the government.

Quoting Banco (Reply 19):

You seem to be viewing things through the rose-tinted spectacles of a die hard Labour supporter. If you can't see the problems, then you'd better bloody well hope the government can, because otherwise they're going down.

I'm not seeing this through the rose-tinted specs of a Labour supporter. You say the state of the opposition is of no relevence, but I disagree. The Blair government survived for so long because of the turmoil of the Tories. Labour have done countless unpopular and ill-judged things, yet it's been the ineptitude of the Tories over the last ten years and the default-to-Right mentality that's stopped Labour being in any real danger. Now the Tories have successfully re-invented themselves Labour are looking more vulnerable.

So with that being said, of course the reaction of the Tories matters. Despite Northern Rock and the HMRC problem the Tories have come up with nothing. The 'Get a grip' soundbite is probably the best, but no different from the hundreds of Boris Johnson quips heard over the last decade.

Topic: RE: 25m Child Benefit Records Lost By The Government
Username: Banco
Posted 2007-11-23 11:19:11 and read 1181 times.



Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
But it's not going to fester in the government's back pocket

Of course it is! Every time Northern rock is mentioned, it's going to be in terms of how much public money is invested in it! And it's going to go on and on and on.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
They have distanced themselves politically as much as possible from the bank, which is the cleverest thing they could have done.

Initially, I agree with you. It's what's happening now that's the problem. They needed a quick resolution. They haven't got one.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
Name another time the country has gone to war based on piss-poor intelligence, or lies, with protests in the streets of London? Labour and Blair were re-elected after that.

Oh, for heaven's sake, don't be ridiculous. The issue of 5 former CDS's criticising Brown is hardly going to bring down the government. It's that it's one more thing on top of everything else. And it's unprecedented, as I said.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
Backbench Labour MPs don't run the government.

Duh, really? Never knew that.

Backbench MPs get twitchy, because they worry about losing their seats.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
I'm not seeing this through the rose-tinted specs of a Labour supporter. You say the state of the opposition is of no relevence, but I disagree. The Blair government survived for so long because of the turmoil of the Tories. Labour have done countless unpopular and ill-judged things, yet it's been the ineptitude of the Tories over the last ten years and the default-to-Right mentality that's stopped Labour being in any real danger. Now the Tories have successfully re-invented themselves Labour are looking more vulnerable.

The Blair government survived so well because people were generally happy with it, and saw no reason for change. The fact that the Tories were completely unelectable anyway made it easy for them, because there was no alternative. The only requirement for an opposition is that they look electable. The Tories now are. Don't swallow the Labour spin about there being no Tory policies. At this time in the electoral cycle in the nineties there were no Labour policies either. That's why Brown was so keen on an early election, because it would have taken the Tories completely by surprise before they were ready.

Quoting 777236ER (Reply 24):
So with that being said, of course the reaction of the Tories matters. Despite Northern Rock and the HMRC problem the Tories have come up with nothing. The 'Get a grip' soundbite is probably the best, but no different from the hundreds of Boris Johnson quips heard over the last decade.

See above. Two years out from an election there's no need whatsoever for the Tories to come up with a full programme of policies for Labour to pick apart. All they have to do right now is sit there and look pretty, just as Blair did when the Conservatives of the 1990s were falling apart. And Labour's stealing of Tory initiatives is going to come back to bite them too, as part of what is beginning to be a sizeable list of Labour embarrassments. You ARE seeing it through rose-tinted spectacles, I'm afraid. Psephology is as much about sentiment as anything else, and Labour are now beginning to piss off more people than they are pleasing.


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