Thursday, 3 November 2011

Question Time - Dont make a Drachma out of a crisis edition

David Dimbleby is joined in Westminster Hall by the Theresa May, Ed Balls, Shirley Williams, Peter Hitchens and Benjamin Zephaniah

But never mind all that..

Breaking News ****that the prize for the holder of the world champion title of QUESTION TIME SUPREMO will be ********* A bottle of

Suntory Hibiki Japanese 17 Year Old Whisky.

A seventeen year-old Japanese blended whisky from Suntory.The nose is quite full. There are notes of honey and wax, resin and oak. There are notes of gentle smoke and cacao, hints of cooked fruit and a nutty note. The palate is sweet and rich. There are crisp notes of mixed peels, raisin and custard with a little zest and plenty of oak. The finish is long with notes of oak and cocoa and sherried peels.

And if you don't drink..then re gift it. Its Christmas! {soon..depending on Austerity}

Leaderboard as of

Botogol - 28½

BQ - 26
Budgie - 26

Timbo614 - 25
Nick Drew - 25
Sebastian Weetabix - 23½
Appointmetotheboard - 23½
Dick the Prick -23
Measured - 23
Philipa - 22½
Hatfield Girl - 22
Mark Wadsworth - 21.5
Miss CD - 21½
Hopper - 21½
Miss S-J -21
Hovis - 20.5
GSD - 20
Malcolm Tucker - 18½
CU - 17½
Andrew - 14½
Jan - 14
Woman on a raft - 8
Sean -6
Electro-Kevin - 4
Anon {1} -3½
Alex - 1½

*It was noted how EK suddenly got interested when booze was mentioned.


Dick the Prick said...

Whoooo hooo! Genuine points mean prizes.

Bit too early to speculate but just off the cuff, this panel seems even more lefty than usual. Will forego the milkshakes this week and stick to medicinal alcohol; you can almost write various entreaties to 'theeenk of the chilllldwen' although Zephania should use more vivid language!

andrew said...

1 Greece - such untrustworthy people should not be in the Euro (just like us) and also not in the EU for good measure?

2 Greece - a principled stand by the cradle of democracy trying to make up for the democratic deficit in Europe - where is our referendum?

3 Lancashire gas - Earthquakes vs the lights going out / energy security (bit of a vain hope here)

4 Are children Feral - chance for all to opine about youth and families and relative inequality

5 Should libel cases still be allowed under CFAs (Jefferies) - chance to bash hitchens / papers and remind all the story is not dead

Botogol said...

a prize .. on offer woo hoo!
I will keep today's questions under wraps for a while then.

So when does the current comp end? on the last QT before Christmas ?

Electro-Kevin said...

1 - Seeing as the Germans completely fucked over the Greeks in WWII, David, don't you think it should be the Germans bailing them out with the 200bn in gold Angela Merkel has locked in vaults ?

Analysts reckon the Greeks are owed 90bn Euro in lost interest and compensation.

2 Who were the Nazis btw ?

3 Should we be paying for the Greek bailout via the IMF ?

4 Why does Hollywood blame us for German atrocities ? (Gibsons's The Patriot for one)

5 Has Germany properly atoned for its sins during WWII (No. I don't accept it was 'the Nazis' wot did it)

6 Should a water canon be appointed at St Pauls ? If so should he be allowed to be a German ?

Bill Quango MP said...

1. Greeks! Who let that Trojan horse into the EU? Their crappy banks are our Achilles heel. "Hector! Hector! Lets all Hector Papandreou!"

2. "Oh Paris, thou have stolen our Helen!" EU summits & if 'Persephone' Osborne planted the seeds in the spring, why is there is bugger all growth in the winter.

3. Dave 'Cassandra' Cameron can see the fall of Troy unfolding but is powerless to prevent it.
He is also powerless to prevent another £50 billion odd being poured down the plughole to keep the EU alive.

4. The Gods are angry. Zeus has demanded his Prophet Rowan come down from mt Olympics and find a way to allow the church to be on the side of the poor and anti capitalist whilst remaining the wealthiest organisation in the land, that pays the fewest taxes.

5. Trying to get justice for fathers is like the labours of Hercules.
Why is a woman encouraged to claim abuse from a partner in order to obtain legal aid? Surely this damages the happiness index?

Sean said...

1, Greece, what? Hey? whats all that about then. How is it you dont get much in the way of democracy in the home of democracy (assuming later today they put they gun down realizing that they are not going to get better terms) are the euro-craps totalitarian? Is there anything in the euro piss pot to borrow to save us all. Chinas got lots of cash, how come? the euro humiliation,everyone claps Balls for saying Brown was a genius for keeping us out.

2, Growth, Growth we have growth. The Beeb invite you to Clap along with balls... its all a fluke. A double dip to dip your balls and Lefty lolly sherbet you see, unlike that rock solid growth productive growth in the last decade. Tories ya see,

3, Cricket of all things, is it really that bent? Jim would not have fixed that, compare and contrast. Today we are not just going down the toilet we are down the toilet, Jimmy hey! charitee!
(the only time in history that clapping in QT will be justified)

4, Blackpool Gas (not the cooker shop in ,Houndshill Shopping Centre) will it save us? is it worth the cracks in the comedy carpet in the front of the tower?

5, Hugh Grant hey? will fathers and grandparents ever get equal rights with mothers? what about their human rights, I thought we were in the EU.......wait a minute, whens the vote.

Timbo614 said...

I'm keeping the powder dry now! for the liquid prize Woo Hoo! Bottoms Up and cheers! BQ

I just wish Papandreou would keep us updated on his next statement- we could make fortunes as Global markets bow to his every move!!

Sean said...

English whiskey is so much better.

Mind you, there is always Jura
Superstition Islands.

hovis said...

cant think will try later - why the webdings for the whisky write up?

GSD said...

Greetings from the (very soggy) West Country!

1) Will/should the Greek ppl be allowed to have a vote?

2) St Paul's protest & Rowen's intervention. Has this faux demonstration succeeded? Will DC cave to Merkel/Sarcosy on the financial transaction tax?

3) First FIFA, now Indian cricketers - is all international sport bent?

4) With growth at 0.5% & inflation at >5% should the gov try a plan B - and what should Plan B be?

5) Shale gas tremors - should hydraulic fracturing be allowed?

Sebastian Weetabix said...

English whisky?????? Jeez - is nothing sacred? You Sassenachs have taken our oil, our steel, our coal... and we built an Empire for you with our engineers and soldiers... and this is how you repay us! Stick to gin.

I suppose on the plus side if you're distilling your own vile concoction it leaves more Bunnahabhain for us.

Sean said...

Stick to the deep fried mars bars Seb...Wait on a minute that could be a strong outsider, Are the English weight-ist towards the fat bastards in Scotland.

Sebastian Weetabix said...

Just think of it as working class baked Alaska. Mmmmm!

There's a worse one than deep fried Mars bar, you know. Deep fried Pizza. I haven't indulged myself as I'm on blood pressure medication as it is.

Hopper said...

Afternoon ladies and gents,

1. Greece and the vote. Was GPap right to give his demos a vote on their fate, or is the Eurozone integrity (har de har har) important than this? Leading on to...
2. Occupy protests gaining international momentum. Why don't they occupy Westminster instead of St. Pauls? Dimble to press T May on whether we should shoot teargas into the head of protestors.
3. Fracking - now we know it causes poxy little quakes, is this a good excuse for haemorrhaging another few tens of billions into solar / wind? (Personally I'm willing to take the risk of Blackpool falling into a tectonic trench in exchange for cheap gas, and hope they drill around Bristol too).
4. Wildcard - London Cyber Crime conference this week. Are our politicians doing enough to keep us safe online? (Don't get me started)
5. Since the British Empire Medal is being reintroduced - would Ben Z accept this honour instead?

Oh lordy, Shirley Williams. I don't think I'm allowed watch, my doctor would give me such a telling-off.

measured said...

Shouldn't the people be allowed to decide? How long can they ignore us? Shirley Williams will digress to a party political broadcast for the EU party.  #EU

How do we stop feral children forming gangs? 

Are we right not to support countries, not currencies? I suspect definitions here, combined by Ed Balls bully boy effect, will end up stultifying everyone

How do we get back to growth? Ditto 

Cricket fixing - what do we do about it? 

Posted from Jeddah. No kidding!

Mark Wadsworth said...

1. Greece, should they have a referendum, why can't we, should we bail out Euro-zone via the IMF, savage Tory cuts imposed on Greece etc etc.

2. Blackpool earthquakes, dirty postcard humour "Did the earth move for you?", catastrophic climate change, rain in W England, snow in USA, floods in Thailand.

3. Is the time right for Fox to return to the front bench yet?

4. St Pauls, should those two chaps have resigned (three apparently) is the church beholden to Mammon, why don't these rent-a-sqautters go and get a proper job, I tell you, in my day we had National Service but that fell victim to Savage Tory Cuts which is why we are all so poor etc.

5. Cricket - what kind of cheating is worse, cheating to win or cheating to lose (i.e. deliberately throwing a match)? Wwhat sort of cultural imperialism is it when English courts sentence ethnically diverse sportsmen from other countries to prison where the prisoners aren't even fed properly any more because of Savage Tory Cuts, I tell you in my day, a spell in the Army would have taught them about fair play, we've got enough foreign prisoners in our jails, can't we just deport them, well no of course we can't because of bloody Human Rights, of all of a sudden our prisons are good enough are they (cont. page 94)

Miss CD said...

- Greece
- Father's custody
- St Pauls
- Diets in England
- Kidney donation.

Must dash

hatfield girl said...

Should we defend the englishiness of English or allow its mongrelisation in the interests of it being the global lingua franca?

Should the coalition government lift limits on pupil numbers at grammar schools at once and make places available now rather than in two years?

Why are people paid out of taxes being so greedy in their pension demands?

What changes should be made to control the House of Lords in acting not as a revising chamber but as an undemocratic opposition to the elected government, particularly over important matters like the NHS?

Are referendums destructive of parliamentary democracy?

Botogol said...

i think there are a lot of really good QT topics out there this week... but alas it looks like Greece and Euro will swamp everything... but anyway I'll go with my instinct: greece.. plus some unusual ones this week.

1 - Should Greece accept EU bail out

2 - Should the UK be putting more moeny into the IMF

3 - Why does Prince Charles have a veto on Government Legislation, and why hasn't either the last govet or the current one changed it?

4 - In this time of cuts is it right for the NHS to offer caesarians where there is no medicial need?

5 - why does the govt expect top women executives to settle for less in the boardroom ?

for a bonus point: a shady cross-parliamentary betting syndicate tells me to look out for Dimblebore performing the Ed Balls 'flat-line' salute, at around 0h23mins..

hovis said...

1. Greece - Bailouts should they accept one?

2. Greece and referendum - (depending on whether GPap has resigned or not and whether the referendum has been rescinded by then) - now there has been an offer should we all have referendums ?

3. St Pauls protesters & C.of E.

4. Public sector pensions - should they strike? / is teh offer gold plated or te ultimatum a cheap trick?

5. Growth 0.5% - we need growth no a new double dip ...

Miss S-J said...

1 Greasy Greeks have been told if you're out of the Euro club you're on your own. Is that fair? No help from anyone if you want to quit the Euro?

2. Are the Tories trying to find a way to put more money into the bailout whilst pretending they aren't.

3. St Pauls protestors. Is part-time camping the new gap year?

4. Public sector strikes. Why did the government wait until it was too late to offer a better deal?

5. Bernardos survey. Why are kids so badly behaved?

Malcolm Tucker said...

Has to be a Grecian special

1. Has the Greek PM resigned, promised to hold a referendum, called an election, exited the Euro or none of the above. Or has he done the opposite?

2. Are Labour really going to vote against giving money to the IMF like they did in July? Are the euroloving labour really the party to bring down the Euro?

3. Obama's debt deal. Does anyone listen to the tarnished messiah anymore? China was unimpressed.

4. Unison vote to strike to ensure pension equality. Animal Farm style equality.

5.Why did the church say yes-no-maybe-definitely, yes-ish-no-maybe to the occupy st Pauls camp? Can't the church take ANY decision in less time than a century?

Sebastian Weetabix said...

OK, here goes:
1. Greece: does the panel know wtf is going on? Can they tell us? Can Greece be kicked out of the EU as the commission is threatening?
2. Caesarians on demand - isn't this money better spent on cancer treatments than those who are too posh to push?
3. Are public sector workers right to strike over pensions?
4. Why is the government messing about with the act of succession but not doing anything about getting more women into Britain's boardrooms?
5. Cricket - is this the thin end of the wedge? Is England only winning because better teams want to lose?

Whatever the questions are, Ed Balls will manage to talk about flatlining and Shirley Williams will talk about how appalling the proposed changes to the NHS are; Benjamin Zephaniah won't make any sense; Hitchens will be even more bonkers than normal.

Nick Drew said...

1) Greece (1) - & why won't politicians ever Let The People Speak ?

2) Greece (2) - well there has to be lots on this - should UK contribute to bailout via IMF sleight-of-hand, or indeed any other way ?

3) is the English diet really better than the Scots & Irish & their deep-fried Mars-bars ?

4) St Pauls & the role of the church - what's that all about then ?

5) (with heavy heart) shale gas & that earthquake

appointmetotheboard said...

1. Greece's big wooden horse parked on the EU lawn. Depending on where we are at the time of the show, could be referendum / no referendum / leaderless parliament / unity government / bought by Apple. Someone will definitely mention irony and the birthplace of democracy.

2. Public sector pensions. Seriously, why don't private sector workers demand better pensions rather than public sector ones be made just as crap?

3. The Anglican Church / FTT / St Pauls / OccupyLSX.

4. Growth / what growth / should we slash VAT?

I'd really like someone to ask about the government's latest plans to reduce benefit increases as CPI has come in a bit too high for their liking. But I can't see it.

Expect quite a lot of time to be spent on Europe, so, er, gonna go for the four question bonus...

Japanese whisky, eh? Sounds a bit counter-intuitive to me, just like English whisky. Nonetheless, I'm an open minded old leftie, and I'm more than happy to help Botogol sample it...

CityUnslicker said...

easy easy

The most left wing ever programme, no facts or coutner-points allowed without booing:

1 - Greek Referendum - Socialists say these sorts of things should not be allowed. Hitchens demurs

2 - Occupy St Pauls - Hitchens tries to defend church, falls flat. heros are the socialist non workers

3) Bankers are evil - Bob Diamond's speech in the city tonight - morality too so even Hitch will join in saying they are immoral.

4) Pensions deal - the cuts, Governmetn wrong, cuts wrong, public sector right - no facts on deficit or reality allowed. Some public sector union person will be picked to ask the question and handily have only a 3p pension to drag out all sympathy possible.

Epic fail of a show, I nearly can't bear to watch!

Timbo614 said...

Have to go along with the crowd I think...

1) Is it a Greek tragedy of democracy or is it a travesty of democracy? Where are we now an hour after the last agreement! Do they want the cash or not? If not then just do it (default that is).

Now it gets trickier... it could be nip and tot, for top nip shot top spot :)

2) Pubic Sector Pensions - So 10 years for theirs to go down the toilet, Ours flushed away last year this year and all following years. What's the deal with the strike call huh? Get real!

3) How do the Government actually propose to stop yoofs joining Gangs? Will we have Gang Rules? or Gangbusters? Another few million wasted in more "moments of madness"?

4) Do the panel think the G20 have any actual answers to the global financial meltdown that still seems to be in full swing 3 years after they "fixed" it?

5/Throwaway) Sausage, bacon, double-egg, double-toast, double-beans all round... Will English Diets save the other union members (like our money does)?

Philipa said...

Oh cripes I dunno but with Hitchens on it won't be too boring. Watch him get religion, drugs, morality, Tories are dead and should be stuffed down the plumbing, Cam not a Tory + is the heir to Bliar, or absent fathers into any convenient vehicle:

1. recent legislation about custody/equal rights for fathers, all that.

2. Greece/referendum/bailout & all that.

3. #occupyLondon and the CofE and it's role/stance therein. Dean resigning. PH will hark back to his younger protesting days: we did it because we enjoyed doing it. Ah protests ain't what they used to be.

4. If they mention Xmas or Liz Jones I'm watching Newsnight. So: the IMF

5. Bribery in sport.

(G20? who cares when Sky can cover the Jackson investigation) One thing I can't understand: why would a mans resignation be seen as some sort of fix? It isn't. It never actually solves the problem as such. So thank goodness for saint Obama (and Chinas money?).

Woman on a Raft said...

Benjy...oh no, he's a pleasant enough chap and I've read his kidult novel but does this worthiness help?

1) Greece - does the panel think we should have a referendum?

2) Adoption - Benji's special subject - it's the reason he's on. Should black children be adopted in to white families? Or is that a plan by the eeevil torees?

3) #Occupy - isn't the church right to oppose eeevil toreee cuts (Ed Balls attempts to rile Theresa May).

4) Energy: aren't bird mincers better than all those frackking earthquakes?

5) throwaway question: we have an obesity crisis (which won't be challenged) what food treat would the panel find hardest to give up.
(Hitchens says Shirley can't give up humbug, she says he should stop drinking vinegar.)

Budgie said...

1. Is Plan B essential to stop us becoming like Greece? Evil Thatcherite Tory toffs and bankers caused this crisis. Brown a saint and so are his acolytes. St Paul's protesters heroes of the soviet BBC.

2. Greece - in, out, shake it all about? Saint Brown kept us out of the euro, no thanks to Thatcher.

3. Phone hack scandal orchestrated by NoW at instigation of Thatcher. Poor Carol Caplin. Evil right wing press barons always do Labour down.

4. Selfless, dedicated, hard-working, poorly paid, saintly public sector workers forced to go on strike to oppose evil Thatcherite Tory plot to leave them in penury in old age. Is this right?

Dick the Prick said...

Greece obviously. Great economics for kids who didn't keep up at skool.

Education - Zephenia is off West

Adoption - rude

Economics - skint

Sommet esoteric - gay marriages maybe?

Bill Quango MP said...

Just back in from a council meeting on broadband. Its being delivered to the most needy and the most remote , said the blurb.
But in the detail, it just isn't. Its coming to towns and cities, as you would expect and everyone will be paying extra council tax for it from 2012.

Anyway..Ill just copy the Q's from Twitter tonight..Just too tired and have a sick toddler who wants to watch Peppa pig. Showed him Ed Balls but he didn't go for it.

Q First question: Is it right for the public sector workers to strike when they have been offered a better deal?

Q: Does the UK need special laws to stop protesters setting up - seemingly permanent - residence in significant public places?

Q: Sarkozy said today “if the euro explodes so does Europe”. Was he right?

Q: In a democracy should members of the royal family be allowed a veto?

Q: Do fathers have the right to equal access to their children once they divorce?

Q: What do you think is the essential ingredient of General Well Being?

6 questions! What's going on?

Bill Quango MP said...

Quick scores ..really too tired to even make a drink.

Andrew - 2
EK -2.5
BQ -3
Sean -2½
GSD - 2½
Hopper - Hmmm..2
Measured - 2 {Jeddah? No kidding!I was in Torquay today. pissing it down}
MW - 2 + extra ½ for getting PH's answers right.
Miss CD -3
HG - 3
Botogol -2.5 +double points for Charlie. - 3.5
Hovis - 3.5
Miss S-J - 3.5
Malcolm Tucker -3
Sebastian Weetabix - 2 + .05 for the panel's response. It says a lot when it seemed Ed Balls spoke the most sense.
ND - 2.5
appointmetotheboard - 3 {Japanese whisky is very sought after, So I'm told.Google it. Its expensive enough!}
CU - 3 and almost 4 ..but 3
Timbo614 - 2.5
Philipa - 3.5
Woman on a Raft - 3 +0.5 for humbug and vinegar - 3.5
Budgie -3
Dick the Prick- 3

Most of us did well, but no one near the possible 6 -7 points we could have got. Does this herald a new phase of extra questions being asked?

Leaderboard update tomorrow

Night night.

Dick the Prick said...

Cheers Bill

appointmetotheboard said...

Sterling effort under difficult circumstances. Appreciated Bill. Will look up the whisky!

Botogol said...

well done BQ -- effort much appreciated -- I have to confess I struggled to stay awake myself last night (too much champagne and fried-brown-food at Corney & Barrow)...

It WAS a strange QT, but there was something in the wind, I managed to predcit that the questions would be unusual and varied, but didn't manage to predict the actual Qs - escept for Prince Charles which saved my bacon.
I was quite surprised that
1 Theresa May defended the veto (or at least didn't condemn it)
2 no one else on the panel seemed to have noticed the story. Despite the views of some tweeters I thought Ed Balls' confusion was genuine (perhaps I am naive).

Benjamin Zeph seemed largely out of his depth but I noticed was very popular with the tweeters...

Bill Quango MP said...

Botogol: The Zephyer was very popular. Philipa was tweeting love hearts.
I couldn't see it. He seemed a long way out of his depth, which isn't his fault, he's not an economist, he's a poet. But why his utterances were greeted as wisdom was beyond me. Hitch was the same, only coming from the right side.
I did like it when he said why give these protesters a platform just because they've got a tent?
And Ben's 'can't protesters have a coffee now?' was used on HIGNTY to destroy Mencsh. Unfairly too. The point is not, not allowing a drink of coffee, to a street dweller.
Its that coffee was and is a major trading commodity. It is almost THE symbol of globalisation and commerce.
It is environmentally unfriendly, has directly led to the millions of deaths of the indigeneous peoples of Latin America, and encourages inequality in wages throughout the globe.
It is a product, sold with up to 1000% mark up, that directly caused the 2-300% high street rent rises of the the mid 90's.

No matter how much free wifi and jazz music you allow for, it is still almost THE defining capitalism consumer model, and the fact it can be tasty is no excuse.

As a supporter of wealth creation its no worry to me, but to someone who wants to change society and talks about fairness, wealth and inequality..You'd expect they shouldn't permit themselves within a 1000 yds of the place.

And lets not even discuss APPLE

hatfield girl said...

Once might be considered a misfortune but twice begins to look like....

Bill Quango MP said...

Apologies! Apologies!

Honour now restored I hope.

Botogol said...

Hitch is one of those people (john redwood is another) who is much much better in writing than he is in person.

- partly Hitch comes over all defensive in person (while he is assured in writing)

- partly because provactive one-liners like 'I'm glad we don't live in a democracy' simply don't work in the cramped space and in-your-face style of QT. In writing that sort of thing is great, your attention is caught, you smile, you read on to find out what he means. In QT he says that and everyone immediately says 'you idiot' and the moment is lost.

I thought Ed Balls did pretty well actually. Childish in parliament, here he was presenting himself as the calm grown up voice of reason out home-secretarying the home secretary, who just couldn't find the right voice last night.

Bill Quango MP said...

Agreed Botogol. I found it strangely unnerving to find Ed Balls the most articulate, rational and believable person on the panel.

He normally struggles to manage that on a panel of one.

Philipa said...

Agreed, Bogotol.

I only tweeted love hearts in response to one comment of Zephs and incidentally one of PHs. Watching PH laugh at the end was as disturbing as Wednesday Adams being perky.