Word reaches Guido that there is serious consternation amongst a number of senior Tories over the way in which last week’s surprise announcement about plain packaging was squeezed out like an awkward fart. Usually reliable sources suggest Osborne is set to raise it at Cabinet this morning, with Jeremy Hunt in the sights for a proper going over. In an increasingly rare moment of agreement between the Chancellor and the Home Secretary, Guido hears Theresa May is pretty annoyed too about how the move was snuck out with little or no wider consultation of Cabinet colleagues. Big Phil Hammond is also said to be against the Labour-backed measure, sceptically telling the BBC last week that he “will want to look very carefully at the evidence.
Up to 100 Tory MPs are planning to vote against Government plans to force tobacco companies to sell cigarettes in plain packaging, The Telegraph can disclose.
In a move that will cause embarrassment for Prime Minister David Cameron weeks ahead of the general election scores of Conservative MPs will vote against the plans….
The Cabinet is understood to be split on the measure, with Theresa May, the Home Secretary, and George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Secretary, not forewarned about the plans….
One source said that Jeremy Hunt, the Health secretary, has justified the plans by telling colleagues “we were under pressure from Labour to do it”.
Another Tory MP said the plans were not the policies that should be backed by a right of centre political party: “We need some authentic Conservative bloody policies.”
Not sure what the outcome will be, or even why 100 Tory MPs are up in arms. For all I know they’re angry that Plain Packaging wasn’t brought in earlier.
Meanwhile, in Greece:
It’s no secret what Yanis Varoufakis thinksGreece should do with its debt.
The economics professor at the University of Athens, who announced his appointment as the country’s finance minister in a posting on his personal blog on Tuesday, has been arguing since the beginning of the crisis that Greece should default while staying a member of the euro area. As well as on his website, Varoufakis shares his opinions with 128,000 Twitter followers.
Greece should have never joined the euro area, but now that it’s in, a departure would be like falling from a cliff, he said. “The last line in Hotel California explains where we are: you can check out any time, but you can never leave,” he told Bloomberg Radio in May 2012.
And immediately after complaining last night how I had never figured out how to model climate, I had a new idea about how it might be done. I’ve spent much of today working on it. Without going into detail, it involves covering the Earth’s surface with several layers of ‘cells’ of air, like huge ping-pong balls, that expand when they’re warmed. From my investigations today, I’m fairly sure that these cells would behave in accordance with the Gas Laws, and would be able to demonstrate convection, wind motion, high and low pressure areas, and maybe even tidal effects too – all done using the laws of gravitation and motion which currently underpin my orbital simulation model. Very little new physics would be needed.
The down side looks like it could well mean that my model would run very slowly, if thousands (or even millions) of air cells are needed.