The news in tweets: Thursday, July 13, 2023

Martin Lewis: he’s really not happy with Oliver Dowden.

This one’s for all of you who want some real news alongside your daily revelations about “BBC presenter” – or who simply didn’t care about that ‘dead cat’ story.

Martin Lewis corrects the record after Oliver Dowden falsely claimed he supported the Tories

Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis does not take kindly to suggestions that he supports any political party over the others.

So it was only to be expected that, after Oliver Dowden claimed he supported the government on a point in the government’s Mortgage Charter, he would be… miffed.

Here’s what he had to say:

For those of you who can’t (or can’t be bothered to) click on “Show more”, he continued: ‘…benches.”

‘I am party independent. I’ve had constructive conversations with both the Chancellor and the Shadow Chancellor about mortgage support.

‘I do not appreciate being used in party-political spats. It is correct that I support those specific measures in the mortgage charter, mainly as they were my suggestions (so in a way ‘they’re’ supporting what ‘I’ said) and both major parties proposed similar – but that should not be taken as a read-across to favouring any party, even just within the mortgage agenda.’

This Writer wondered, after PMQs, how many falsehoods Dowden would be caught out on in deputy Prime Minister’s Questions this week. I named two at the time.

This is another. How many more were there?

Join the demonstration to save ticket offices

This is happening today (Thursday, July 12, 2023). Information courtesy of the Peace and Justice Project founded by Jeremy Corbyn:

The government’s plans to close 1,000 ticket offices in England – this latest attack on railway workers – puts thousands of jobs at risk and, if these proposed changes go ahead, there will be serious implications on millions of elderly, disabled and vulnerable commuters who rely on the personal touch of a ticket office to arrange and support their travel.

We must resist these closures.

Tomorrow, the RMT is hosting a national day of action, leafleting and speaking to commuters outside train stations up and down the country. And in London there will be a demo outside Kings Cross with speakers including Jeremy Corbyn. Together, we must demand that ticket offices remain open – click here to find your nearest action.

The opposition to these ticket office closures has been immense, with commuters writing in to local papers, posting on social media and making it known that they oppose these closures. The government have also opened a consultation on these closures which closes in just two weeks. If you haven’t already, please fill in the consultation – click here, select your local train station and make your views known.

Write to your MP

You can also write to your MP and ask them to raise this issue in Parliament and support the campaign to save our ticket offices. You can use this letter-writing tool, created by our comrades at the RMT, which only takes a few minutes to fill out. As the consultation period is brief, it is absolutely vital that we ensure this issue is at the very top of the parliamentary agenda in the weeks to come.  Click on the link and demand your MP stands up for railway workers and the millions of commuters who rely on them to support their journeys.

Sign the petition to make sure the Tories stick to the law – and don’t send any refugees to Rwanda

Are we seriously being asked to believe nobody in Boris Johnson’s office or the government knows how to switch on a phone?

Look at this, which I believe is from the Covid Inquiry. Simon Case is the Cabinet Secretary and head of the civil service:

“I thought it was handed over” is legal-speak to avoid actually saying anything.

In fact, we all know the phone wasn’t handed over. Apparently Boris Johnson has a ‘team’, alongside people from – oh dear – the Cabinet Office, trying to switch on ‘Phone 1’, but none of them know how to do it.

They say they fear security breaches, because the phone’s number was public knowledge for 15 years before Johnson twigged that this might be a bad idea and switched it off in April 2021 (if you believe in that sort of thing).

In fact, if anyone interested in breaching the UK’s security wanted to hack that phone, they would have done it long before Johnson got near the “off” switch. Also, any compromising information in it should have been changed long ago. There really is no reason not to simply switch it back on.

Alternatively, since WhatsApp messages aren’t actually stored on the phone anyway, why don’t they all just access the cloud storage that actually does hold that information, as people (including This Writer) have been telling them to do for many months?

While the government was defending itself for painting over mural at one child refugee centre, it was painting over other murals at other centres

This is cruelty for its own sake:

Lords defeat Tory government again over Illegal Migration Bill

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