PM and Labour leader Gordon Brown survives party conference – with the help of his wife Sarah, who acted as compere when he gave his big speech. And she gave him the kiss of life, as the papers said.
Next morning, transport minister and Opus Dei member (whip it!) Ruth Kelly resigns from Brown’s cabinet. (She wants to spend more time with her kids… yeah, right, that’s why she’s staying on as an MP, is it?)
Is this a sign of things to come? Well, one of those ministers rumoured to be planning a resignation (if a windfall tax was imposed on energy monopolies) is CBI-favourite John Hutton. He’s no doubt brimming with joy that British Energy has been bought out by EDF ( in which the French state has an 85% stake) meaning that a majority of the UK energy industry is now controlled by multinational corporations. Will this mean lower prices? No, but it will mean bigger profits.
As Tony Woodley said, to much applause, at Labour’s conference – if the utilities won’t cut their bills, they should be taken back into public ownership. In fact, sod the ifs and buts – they should be renationalised.
And what was in Brown’s speech? Well, free prescriptions for cancer patients in England… to be expanded. A trial run of free school meals for all children… a policy the unions are pushing for as it will benefit working people greatly at this time. No mention of a windfall tax on the greedy energy companies – which though it would alienate the scumbags in the City, would re-engage millions of traditional Labour voters across the country.
Will he survive? Well, if the upcoming reshuffle doesn’t result in the dumping of those who are conspiring against him, we can conclude that he’s just trying to hang on for as long as possible.