Abu Qatada loses European appeal against deportation

A panel of five judges ruled there were no grounds to reconsider a decision that the hate cleric would not face torture if returned to Jordan, sources said.

The decision was a narrow escape for Theresa May, Home Secretary, after the court decided the application was submitted within time.

The firebrand will remain in the country for up to a year because he will now resume a separate legal challenge against assurances that he will face a fair trial.

Qatada was arrested and returned to custody last month after the Home Secretary resumed his deportation.

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Amorous Senior

Dorothy and Edna, two “senior” widows, are talking.

Dorothy: “That nice George Johnson asked me out for a date. I know you went out with him last week, and I wanted to talk with you about him before I give him my answer.” 

Edna: “Well, I’ll tell you. He shows up at my apartment punctually at 7P.M., dressed like such a gentleman in a fine suit, and he brings me such beautiful flowers!  

Then he takes me downstairs, and what’s there but a luxury car… a limousine, uniformed chauffeur and all. Then he takes me out for dinner… a marvellous dinner… lobster, champagne, dessert, and after-dinner drinks.  

Then we go see a show. Let me tell you, Dorothy, I enjoyed it so much I could have just died from pleasure! So then we are coming back to my apartment and he turns into an ANIMAL. Completely crazy, he tears off my expensive new dress and has his way with me at least two times!” 

Dorothy: “Goodness gracious!… so you are telling me I shouldn’t go out with him?” 

Edna: “No, no, no… I’m just saying, wear an old dress.”

Queen and Chaotic Country

MORNING BRIEFING – By Benedict Brogan (Daily Telegraph)

The Queen’s Speech at 11.30am might give David Cameron the re-launch yesterday’s Essex Factory rose garden reunion failed to achieve.

The much-wrangled-over speech will include measures for families, including items that will allow mothers to return to work earlier and transfer their maternity leave to their partners. Read more in our splash here.

Tory MPs will ask – again – how layering yet more costs on businesses is going to promote growth. Dave will reply that looking to the social side goes hand in hand with economic “efficiency” – his favourite new word in place of austerity.

And it looks like George Osborne might agree with the Bill’s opponents. The FT (£) reports that he and other ministers are not keen on the plans.

LORDING IT

Of course, all eyes will be on the wording of the Lords reform bill. My understanding is that whatever Bill is offered today – and it is likely to be significantly weaker than what Mr Clegg initially offered – the outcome will be put to a referendum.

Cameron appears to confirm this in his Mail interview (more on this below). And while this doesn’t help get the Bill past the Commons and Lords, it does offers some kind of fail-safe, the assumption being that the idea will be rejected by the public.

Norman Tebbit has just been on Five Live, saying that Lords reform is simply “a bargaining chip” with the Lib Dems. “Now they have to have something to throw around and that’s that.”

Meanwhile Lord Strathclyde is in the FT (£)making the provocative assertion that the new Lords should be “better able to challenge the Commons”, which is precisely what MPs don’t want to hear. He couldn’t be trying to provoke the Commons into voting the idea down, could he?

Interestingly, Gary Gibbon’s blogclaims that the Tories have agreed to dump the boundary review in exchange for Lib Dems parking Lords reform. No 10 denies this, though not entirely convincingly.

OTHER MEASURES

Other measures expected in the Queen’s Speech include business deregulation, reforms from the Vickers report, a new internet surveillance bill, a flat-rate state pension, and measures to ease the process of adoption. More details can be found in the Guardian.

NO GOOD WITHOUT GROWTH

My column today looks at the growing anxiety behind the scenes about the absence of growth, and how the Tories are trying to convert the Lib Dems.

ACCESS DENIED

This is all happening as pressure mounts on Andrew Lansley, who has defied another order to publish his own assessment of the risks his reforms have posed to the NHS. Read our report here.

Labour has been pushing for it, and waxed indignant last night. But the Government is right to resist: ministers must be able to get advice that is awkward without the risk of it being extracted by an Opposition gunning for mischief.

ANOTHER U-TURN

Dave must be hoping that all this news will dwarf his latest U-turn. He’s abandoned plans to buy the take-off version of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, instead purchasing the jump-jet model of the plane. Read our report here.

The about-face may be necessary, but it is also embarrassing. As one of Liam Fox’s key defence decisions, it will be interesting to see how it plays on the Tory benches..

CAM’S CASE FOR TORY VALUES

Dave wasn’t so pragmatic in his interview with the Mail. The PM told James Chapman:

“There is a growing list of things that I want to do but can’t, which will form the basis of the Conservative manifesto that I will campaign for right up and down the country… Be in no doubt, I want a Tory-only government.”

He singled out human rights law, workplace rights and support for marriage as areas where Tory principles are being held in check, urging those growing tired of coalition not to “waste” the next three years.

Read the full interview and see pictures of the PM and James here.

EUROZONE DOOM

We must not forget, of course, that all this high drama in Westminster happens against a backdrop of a global economic crisis. Stock markets across the world are falling as Greece moves closer to the euro exit following Sunday’s general election. Read our report here.

The FT’s (£) leader column makes the situation plain:

“The EU has gone as far as it can in seeking to help Greece. If there is not the political will in Athens to do what is necessary to preserve membership of the euro, it is pointless to continue. Europe must prepare for an exit from the eurozone that has become probable rather than possible.”

BROOKING IT

Rebekah Brooks’s appearance in front of Leveson later this week will also be volatile. Especially given the story the Times (£) has on the text messages between Mrs Brooks and the PM. It says:

“An updated biography of the Prime Minister discloses that Mr Cameron told Mrs Brooks that she would get through her difficulties [the phone-hacking scandal], just days before she stood down. Such contact then came to an “abrupt halt”, although the Prime Minister sent an emissary to apologise for his sudden coldness, explaining that Ed Miliband had him on the run.”

The most intriguing claim is that they met at a point-to-point after texting beforehand to agree they should not be seen together. Leveson may be knocking on the door of No 10 before long.

LAWS: THE RELAUNCH?

With this much for the Government to worry about at the moment, they should be grateful that David Laws is out there defending them. He was on the Today programme yesterday defending the Coalition and he’s popped up in the FT (£)today, sounding very ministerial:

“The country will judge us over our full term and not on the basis of a turbulent few weeks of “here today, gone tomorrow” headlines.”

Could Mr Laws be re-launching himself too?

KEN’S NO WAXWORK

And finally, to add insult to injury, the Daily Mail’s Ephraim Hardcastle reports that Ken Livingstone has had his waxwork removed from Madame Tussauds and placed in the museum’s archive. “He’s unlikely to be seen again,” a museum spokesperson said.

But Ken should take heart from another story in the Mail. Boris has been snapped wearing a pair of back-to-front silk dragon shorts. Photos here.

POLL WATCH

Latest YouGov/The Sun results: Conservatives 31%, Labour 44%, Lib Dems 8%, UKIP 8%

Government approval rating: -43

TOP COMMENT

In The Telegraph

Benedict Brogan: That old rose garden routine is no good without growth

Jeremy Warner: The big bucks won’t stop here with the departure of Sly Bailey, David Brennan and Andrew Moss

Leader: How to help the aged

Leader: Stability has been the Coalition’s key success

Best of the rest

David Laws in the Financial Times (£): My second-half coalition agenda

Simon Jenkins in the Guardian: George Osborne’s growth policy is turning British cities into Detroit UK

Daniel Finkelstein in the Times (£): We can’t afford public revolts against debt

Laurie Penny in the Independent: Gay marriage is one thing the Tories really don’t get

THE AGENDA

Today: State opening of Parliament

Today: William Hague to meet the President of Mozambique, Armando Guebuza at the Foreign Office

Today: The final appeal hearing on Abu Qatada’s deportation is made by European Court of Human Rights, Strasbourg, France

Today: Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee meeting – result announced tomorrow

11.30am: The Queen’s Speech

6.30pm: Iain Duncan Smith gives a speech to Policy Exchange, 10 Storey’s Gate

OyiaBrown:

How can our eyes be opened other than with brave people like this speaking out?

Originally posted on Rat Nation:

ANN BARNHARDT TELLS IT LIKE IT IS

Ann Barnhardt has been variously described as a “livestock and grain commodity broker, marketing consultant, American patriot, traditional Catholic, and unwitting counter-revolutionary blogger.” She has been a consistent critic of the Obama Regime – and its love affair with Islam – from the beginning, not to mention a strident opponent of Islam itself. Following a death threat posted on her website in response to an article critical of Islam, she posted the following response.

To: annbarnhardt

Watch your back.

I’m going to kill you when I find you. Don’t think I won’t; I know where you and your parents live and all I’ll need is one phone call to kill you all.

– mufcadnan123!

Ann’s response:

Re: Watch your back.
Hello mufcadnan123!

You don’t need to “find” me. My address is 9175 Kornbrust Circle, Lone Tree, CO 80124.

Luckily for you, there are…

View original 623 more words

OyiaBrown:

So we should refuse to take any medicine which does not taste nice?

Originally posted on The Last Refuge:

Of course they do…..

WASHINGTON – Democrats say that the angry, anti-austerity elections this week that saw voters throw out reform-minded French and Greek leaders could be good news for them, a signal that their plan to spend billions more than the Republicans is a vote winner.

Those elections “confirm the position that many of us have taken, which is the most important thing right now is to sustain and nurture the very fragile economy,” said Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., the ranking member of the House Budget Committee.

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A time for the French to keep their heads

When the last French socialist president, François Mitterrand, was preparing for victory, it was my job as a diplomat to accompany him on a trip to London to call on Jim Callaghan. En route from the airport to No 10, I arranged for him to drop in to Kew Gardens. A mistake. He was so enthralled I couldn’t get him out, and we turned up a trifle late for the prime minister.

The point of the story is French insularity. Mitterrand was a passionate arboriculturalist, yet he knew nothing of the glories of Kew. In France, insularity can go along with a romantic nationalism, on Left and Right, and with François Hollande’s victory we are seeing more of that today.

“A policy of national conceit” was how my ambassador in Paris, Sir Nicholas Henderson, characterised French attitudes in the 1970s, and in different conditions that same overweening self-regard is there once again. Socialism is about doctrine, and the economic doctrines of the new president combine two ingredients dear to the heart of the French Left for centuries: nationalism and the revolutionary spirit.

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