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Boris Johnson quotes Apocalypse Now in New Year message

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has evoked the cult film Apocalypse Now in a New Year's message aimed at giving heart to the capital's residents in the face of the economic downturn.

Boris Johnson quotes Apocalypse Now in New Year message  
Boris Johnson: 'Someday captain, this war is going to end'
Photo: CATHAL MCNAUGHTON

Referring to the recession, Mr Johnson quoted Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore, the eccentric commander in the 1979 epic Vietnam war film.

Lt Col Kilgore, who is played by Robert Duvall, says: "Some day captain, this war is going to end."

In a pre-recorded message to be projected on to the wall of the Shell Building on the South Bank in London tonight, he said: "There are those who say we should look ahead to 2009 with foreboding.

"I want to quote Colonel Kilgore in Apocalypse Now when he says 'Some day captain, this war is going to end', and some day, this recession is going to end.

"We can speed the demise of this recession if we all help the poorest in our community and if we make the vital investment that we need in our mass transit system and in fighting crime, so that London emerges at the end better placed to compete and entrenched in its position as the greatest city on earth.

"We are going to be working flat out at City Hall to achieve that.

"Let's go forward into 2009 with enthusiasm and purpose. I wish you a very happy New Year."

Other memorable quotes from the film:

Colonel Walter Kurtz: "The horror... the horror."

Captain Benjamin Willard: "Charging a man with murder in this place was like handing out speeding tickets in the Indy 500."

Willard: "He was close, real close. I couldn't see him yet, but I could feel him, as if the boat were being sucked upriver and the water was flowing back into the jungle. Whatever was going to happen, it wasn't gonna be the way they call it back in Nha Trang."

Kilgore: "Charlie don't surf!"

Kilgore: "I love the smell of napalm in the morning."



Discover the real Spain this winter


Boris Johnson

Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson (born 19 June 1964) is a British journalist and Politician, who serves as the current Mayor of London. He began his career as a trainee reporter on The Times but was sacked for making up a quote. From 1987 he worked at the Daily Telegraph where he became a leader-writer and assistant editor. He was editor of The Spectator from 1999, remaining in the job after his election in 2001 as MP for Henley until 2005. He was elected as London Mayor on 2 May 2008. Johnson is known for his unkempt appearance and eccentric approach to public life; he has attracted press interest over his private life.

Boris Johnson in quotes

17 Jul 2007
  • Boris Johnson to run for mayor
  • In 2004, Boris Johnson was ordered by the then Tory leader Michael Howard to go to Liverpool and apologise for an article in The Spectator which accused the city of "wallowing" in its "victim status".

    He said Liverpudlians made a scapegoat of police in the wake of the Hillsborough disaster, refusing to acknowledge the part played "by drunken fans at the back of the crowd who mindlessly tried to fight their way into the ground".

    The article, on 16 October, said people in Liverpool "cannot accept that they might have made any contribution to their misfortunes, but seek rather to blame someone else for it, thereby deepening their sense of shared tribal grievance about the rest of society".

    A later spat was caused by remarks made in Mr Johnson’s Daily Telegraph column about the Labour leadership crisis, which linked Papua New Guinea to "cannibalism and chief-killing".

    Mr Johnson wrote: "For 10 years we in the Tory Party have become used to Papua New Guinea-style orgies of cannibalism and chief-killing, and so it is with a happy amazement that we watch as the madness engulfs the Labour Party."

    After apologising for any offence, the MP said he would be happy to "add Papua New Guinea to my global itinerary of apology".

    Other quotes by Boris Johnson

    On his hopes of leading the country: "My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive."

    On Tony Blair: "It is just flipping unbelievable. He is a mixture of Harry Houdini and a greased piglet. He is barely human in his elusiveness. Nailing Blair is like trying to pin jelly to a wall."

    On his rivals in the Liberal Democrats: "The Lib Dems are not just empty. They are a void within a vacuum surrounded by a vast inanition."

    In his Telegraph column December 2, 2004 on being sacked from the Tory front bench: "My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters."

    During the campaign trail of the 2005 general election: "What’s my view on drugs? I’ve forgotten my view on drugs."

    On George Bush: "The President is a cross-eyed Texan warmonger, unelected, inarticulate, who epitomises the arrogance of American foreign policy."

    On The 2005 Conservative Leadership Contest: "I am supporting David Cameron purely out of cynical self-interest."

    "Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3."

    On Big Brother: "I didn’t see it, but it sounds barbaric. It’s become like cock-fighting: poor dumb brutes being set upon each other by conniving television producers."



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    Brainy Quotes from
     Boris Johnson


    I have as much chance of becoming Prime Minister as of being decapitated by a frisbee or of finding Elvis.
    Boris Johnson

    I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around.
    Boris Johnson

    My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive.
    Boris Johnson

    My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters.
    Boris Johnson

    The dreadful truth is that when people come to see their MP they have run
    out of better ideas.

    Boris Johnson


    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/5/20090106/twl-rise-in-attacks-on-europe-s-jews-3fd0ae9.html



    Rise In Attacks On Europe's Jews


    Rise In Attacks On Europe's Jews


    Attacks on Jews in Britain and Europe are rising as the violence in Gaza continues.

    According to the Community Security Trust, a group which protects Jewish people, there have been 24 incidents in Britain since December 29.

    This includes an arson attack on a synagogue in London.

    "There has been a significant rise in the number of anti-Semitic incidents, especially when compared with what is usually a very quiet time of year for racist, anti-Jewish attacks," spokesman Mark Gardner said. 

    "It is a pattern with which we and the police are now sadly familiar, whereby hysteria is whipped up against Israel, and British Jews then suffer a wave of anti-Semitism."

    In the attack on the synagogue in Brondesbury north west London, arsonists tried to smash a window.

    They failed because of the toughened protective glass.

    In another incident, a gang of youths in Golders Green, north west London, tried to enter Jewish shops on New Year's Eve while shouting "Jew".

    Nearby, a Jewish man was pulled from his car and assaulted by three men, but not seriously hurt.

    There have also been incidents outside London, including graffiti on a synagogue, anti-Semitic hate mail sent to another, and "Hamas HQ" graffiti on a Jewish building in Manchester.

    Police in one of the North East's biggest Jewish communities have stepped up their patrols. 

    The Northumbria force said it had increased its presence in the Bensham area of Gateshead, home to around 5,000 Orthodox Jews.

    And violence against Jews is increasing in other parts of Europe.

    Assailants rammed a burning car into the gates of a synagogue in Toulouse, in southwest France, on Monday night.

    On Sunday slogans including "murderers ... You broke the cease-fire" and "don't subject Palestine to ethnic cleansing" were daubed on Israel's embassy in Stockholm, Sweden.

    In Denmark, a 27-year-old Dane born in Lebanon of Palestinian parents is alleged to have injured two young Israelis last week, opening fire with a handgun.

    And the government in Belgium has ordered police in Antwerp and Brussels to be on increased alert after recent pro-Palestinian protests ended in violence and dozens of arrests.

    Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne has written to Home Secretary Jacqui Smith about the apparent rise in anti-Semitic incidents.

    Mr Huhne said: "I am deeply concerned by the evidence in the Community Security Trust's report that the Israeli invasion of Gaza is being used as a pretext for threats against the Jewish community in Britain.

    "It has already had to invest substantially in extra security even for public institutions such as state-maintained Jewish faith schools, on the advice of local police forces."

    Related content

    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/18/20090106/twl-southern-lebanon-residents-look-to-g-3cd7efd.html

    Southern Lebanon residents look to Gaza with angst

    Akil Sayegh will not stick around this time. Like many of his fellow residents in this southern Lebanese town pummeled during the 2006 war between Hezbollah and Israel, he stands ready to flee at the first sign of a renewed conflict.

    "We will leave the country in the event of war because this time there will be no place for us to hide if Israel strikes," he said, the devastating 2006 war that left some 1,200 mostly Lebanese civilians dead still fresh in his mind.

    Qana grabbed headlines at the time after an Israeli raid left nearly 30 people dead, most of them women and children. The village 10 years earlier had also been the scene of Israeli strikes which killed 105 civilians who had sought shelter in a UN base during the Jewish state's "Grapes of Wrath" offensive on Lebanon.

    A father of four, Sayegh has already packed a tent in the trunk of his car, purchased extra diapers for his three-month-old and stocked up on essential items.

    "I will head straight to the southern coastal town of Tyre at the first sign of trouble and leave by boat," he said as he huddled around a television set with fellow villagers at a local cafe to watch the latest developments in Gaza.

    He recalled the wave of panic that spread through the village at the weekend when two Israeli jets overflew the region.

    "Suddenly you had everyone in the village running for cover," he said.

    Imad Chebli, 32, said locals were living in fear with everyone glued to their television sets since the Israeli offensive on Gaza began on December 27 in a bid to halt rocket attacks by Hamas fighters.

    Still, like dozens of residents interviewed this week in several southern Lebanese villages, where Hezbollah has a strong presence, Chebli and Sayegh believe that the Shiite group will come out victorious in the event of a new conflict.

    Many say under cover of anonymity that Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran and Syria and is considered a terrorist organization by Washington, has mobilized its troops and readied its weapons arsenal since the Gaza offensive began.

    However the Lebanese government, in which Hezbollah is represented, has played down the possibility that the conflict could spill over with another front opening up in southern Lebanon.

    "We have not received from Hezbollah any sign that they will risk dragging Lebanon into this conflict," Information Minister Tarek Mitri said Monday.

    And residents in southern Lebanon who are still recovering from the 2006 war say they are all but ready to suffer through another conflict despite their adherence to Hezbollah.

    In the village of Haris, Zeinab Jawad, 15, said his father had rushed to stock up on gasoline after Hezbollah chief declared that his party was ready to respond to any aggression.

    In Ayta Eshaab, a border village, houses still bear the scars of the fierce battles that took place there during the 2006 war.

    "The Jews will not dare return here," said confidently Jamal Srour, 62, sitting in his newly rebuilt house.

    His wife approves adding: "This time we will wipe them out inchallah (God willing)."

    Further north in the village of Al Abassiyeh, Mahmoud Chehab, who owns a small shop facing a UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) post warns that in the event the situation in Gaza escalates "we must open another front".

    But not everyone shares his opinion.

    "Our homes are still destroyed," said Siham Al Saadi, a mother of six who lives in the village of Shebaa. "We suffered too much and lost our loved ones.

    "We won't be able to survive another war."



    Southern Lebanon residents look to Gaza ...


    Southern Lebanon residents look to Gaza ...

    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/22/20090106/tpl-uk-palestinians-israel-westbank-sb-43a8d4f.html

    Spirit of solidarity sidelines Palestinian split

    Israel's offensive on Gaza appears to be creating a mood of unity on the streets of the West Bank that the leaders of hostile Palestinian factions have been unable to obtain in months of negotiation.

    It is not the formal entente they say they are searching for, but it is a grassroots solidarity of suffering that some feel exposes how artificial is the split in Palestinian ranks at the level of the political leadership.

    On Tuesday, angry Palestinians in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah protested, chanting: "Today Gaza is under fire, tomorrow it will be the West Bank."

    Slogans called for an end to the schism between President Mahmoud Abbas' secular Fatah faction and Islamist rival Hamas, winner of a 2006 parliamentary election. Since fighting in 2007, the two now control the West Bank and Gaza Strip respectively.

    Abbas and his allies are ready to negotiate peace with Israel after 60 years in return for an end to occupation and an Arab state that would live side by side with the Jewish state, in mutual security.

    Hamas has refused to recognise Israel's right to exist and its leaders call on all to join their resistance platform.

    Some analysts say Israel is content to have Palestinians divided, and doubt that there would be serious progress towards a peace deal with them if Islamist hardliners were brought back into the fold.

    Non-stop television pictures of charred corpses and children's body parts plucked from the smoking rubble of bombed buildings are shocking West Bank Palestinians.

    Israel's 11-day offensive has killed 600 of their people, including many civilians. And it has sidelined the once all-engrossing Fatah-Hamas schism, for the time being at least.

    Some blame Hamas for allowing the situation to reach such a destructive state, but others praise Hamas fighters for their courage in confronting Israeli troops.

    "People in the West Bank sympathise with the civilians in Gaza who get killed, not with Hamas," said Lama Hourani of Ramallah.

    "People here are aware that Israel's aim is not to destroy Hamas but to destroy the will of the Palestinian people everywhere. That is why people here call for unity."

    A shopkeeper in Qalqilya had a different view.

    "Hamas has succeeded in winning the people's support during this war," Fathi Abdel-Al said. Hamas was winning the peoples' hearts for resisting Israel's military might.

    Some Palestinians, however, recalled the widespread destruction of West Bank cities during the Israeli invasion of 2002, when the late Yasser Arafat came under siege in his Ramallah compound. They fear it could happen again.

    Since the Israeli offensive began Hamas leaders have threatened to resume suicide bombing attacks in Israeli cities.

    But some Palestinian analysts doubt they will do that.

    "Sometimes such threats are media-oriented, and sometimes it has to do with local abilities," Hamas lawmaker Ayman Daraghmeh told Reuters.

    "I also see that the world is seeing pictures of the Palestinian people as victims ... maybe any martyrdom attack now could alter this image."

    (Additional reporting by Ali Sawafta in Ramallah, Haitham Tamimi in Hebron, Naim Sweilem in Qalqilya and Atef Saad in Nablus; Editing by Douglas Hamilton)

    Related content



    Latest UK news


    Related content


    City workers walk past the Bank of England ...

    City workers walk past the Bank of England

    Bank set to cut interest rates to record low 


    The Bank of England looks set to cut interest rates by at least half a percentage point this week to their lowest level on record as it tries to prevent the economy sliding into a long and painful recession.

    Financial markets have fully priced in a cut of at least 50 basis points to 1.5 percent when the central bank's Monetary Policy Committee ends its two-day meeting on Thursday. Several analysts are even predicting another 100 basis point reduction.

    And the cuts won't end there. Another big reduction that could take interest rates below 1 percent looks a sure bet in February alongside a signal that borrowing costs will stay low for long time to come.

    "We have pencilled in the Bank rate bottoming out at 0.75 percent, but we stand ready to change this if the Bank of England hints that rates could fall further," said Philip Shaw, chief economist at Investec.

    Caught on the hop by the severity of the downturn, the Bank has already cut interest rates by 3 percentage points since October.

    Before that, a number of policymakers were even thinking about raising interest rates in order to bring down inflation, which is still running well above the Bank's 2 percent target.

    DEFLATION?

    Worries about price pressures, however, have fallen by the wayside as evidence the economy is facing a serious recession is overwhelming and policymakers have become more worried about inflation falling below target or turning negative.

    House prices suffered their worst year on record, falling by nearly 16 percent and the service sector, which makes up 75 percent of the economy, shrank at a near record pace in December, according to two separate surveys on Tuesday.

    Retailers are complaining of a very lacklustre Christmas trading period and have been slashing prices in the New Year sales. Thousands of jobs look set to disappear this year.

    Woolworths, one of the nation's best-known store chains, finally closed for business this week as it became one of the most high-profile victims of the global credit crunch that has made raising cash so hard for so many firms.

    Prime Minister Gordon Brown said this week that, with interest rates close to zero, it was right that the government take fiscal action. Further tax cuts and extra government spending look likely in the March budget.

    That still may not be enough to get the economy moving again as long as banks run shy of new lending. Bank policymakers have even been thinking of ways of boosting the economy through more unconventional means once interest rates cannot go any lower.

    Quantitative easing, or literally boosting the money supply, is probably a way off yet but central banks all around the world are perhaps for the first time having to think about the same kind of steps the Bank of Japan took earlier this decade.

    "We are sceptical that QE in the strict sense, i.e. flooding the banking system with reserves, will give the real economy a significant push, especially as this did not appear to have a material effect in Japan," said Investec's Shaw.


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    Boris Johnson quotes

          “My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters.”

    “My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive.”

    “The Tory Party - the funkiest, most jiving Party on Earth!”

    “Tremendous, little short of superb. On cracking form.”

    “Ken doesn't think he's got anything to say sorry for and if that's really his feeling, then I think that he should stick to his guns.”

    "But here's old Ken - he's been crass, he's been insensitive and thuggish and brutal in his language - but I don't think actually if you read what he said, although it was extraordinary and rude, I don't think he was actually anti-Semitic.”

    “Pyramid of piffle [no, not his views on Liverpool but a report Petronella Wyatt was his mistress]”

    “The dreadful truth is that when people come to see their MP they have run out of better ideas.”

    “I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around.”

    “I have as much chance of becoming Prime Minister as of being decapitated by a frisbee or of finding Elvis

    “To rely on a train in Blair's Britain is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil.”

    “Sometimes, in our thinking about higher education, we're too narrowly confined to a utilitarian calculus about what it's doing to the bottom line of UK plc. I wanted to make the point that higher education adds immeasurably to the value of the UK economy without necessarily obliging everybody to pursue courses that have some immediate vocational application. I wanted to stick up for medieval history, among other things, which was deprecated by Charles Clarke.”

    “It's economically illiterate. A degree in classics or philosophy can be as valuable as anything else.”

      I Like this quote I dislike this quote“I've always known my life would be turned into a farce. I'm just glad it's been entrusted to two such distinguished men of letters.”

    “It's forbidden.”

    “It's very, very good news for Cameron. He's going to storm through, I've absolutely no doubt he's going to be Prime Minister.”

    “I don't see why people are so snooty about Channel 5. It has some respectable documentaries about the Second World War. It also devotes considerable airtime to investigations into lap dancing, and other related and vital subjects.”




    Boris Johnson

    Met police officer numbers will not be cut, insists Boris Johnson's deputy
    Guardian Unlimited logo Guardian Unlimited 1 hour ago A police van in London. Photograph: Paul Owen

    Boris Johnson's deputy mayor today insisted that policing numbers in London would remain stable despite the Conservative mayor's decision to tell Scotland Yard to find £472m of savings over three years. Full Article at Guardian Unlimited

    BBC Bias On Israel: Fabricant Notices
    Anorak logo Anorak 2 hours ago

    MICHAEL Fabricant MP - he of the Boris Johnson fright wig and keen eye - has noticed that the BBC is about as neutral as a Austrian jackboot manufacturer: I have been horrified and angered by the coverage of the Israel-Gaza conflict. Full Article at Anorak

    LONDON - DECEMBER 22:  Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, receives a Chanukah gift of a Mezuzah (a piece of parchment inscribed with specified Hebrew verses from the Torah) after he helped to light a sacred Menorah, marking Chanukah (Hanukkah), on December 22, 2008 in London, England. Hanukkah is an eight-day Jewish holiday, which occurs either late November or December.

    LONDON - DECEMBER 22: Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, receives a Chanukah gift of a Mezuzah (a piece of parchment inscribed with specified Hebrew verses from the Torah) after he helped to light a sacred Menorah, marking Chanukah (Hanukkah), on December 22, 2008 in London, England. Hanukkah is an eight-day Jewish holiday, which occurs either late November or December. View Photo »

    Great design has been the hallmark our great city from our historic palaces and squares to our modern offices. Boris Johnson SOURCE: Creative Review

    Celebrity Feature: What do celebs want from 2009? Here are their new year's resolutions!
    The London Paper logo The London Paper 2 hours ago

    Tuesday, 06 January 2009 ‘Lose a stone’ Boris Johnson, Mayor of London "My promise has to be to tighten my belt – quite literally. I’m as determined as ever to lose a stone around my waist but at this stage I’m unnervingly off target. I will clearly have to run further, cycle faster and eat slower. Full Article at The London Paper

    Police launch online neighbourhood crime maps

    Guardian Unlimited logo Guardian Unlimited 4 hours ago

    ... In some areas, such as London, the maps allow the public to report non-urgent crimes. The mayor of London, Boris Johnson, launched the crime map for the capital last September. Full Article at Guardian Unlimited

    London News: Boris Johnson announces more police for isolated rail stations in outer London

    The London Paper logo The London Paper 4 hours ago

    Tuesday, 06 January 2009 MORE police are to operate at London suburban rail stations, the capital's Mayor, Boris Johnson, has announced. Mr Johnson is to fund an additional 50 British Transport Police (BTP) officers to help reduce crime at key stations. It is also expected that train operating companies will assign 50 of their staff to work with the BTP teams. Full Article at The London Paper

    London News: Boris Johnson announces more police for isolated rail stations in outer London

    Tuesday, 06 January 2009 MORE police are to operate at London suburban rail stations, the capital's Mayor, Boris Johnson, has announced. Mr Johnson is to fund an additional 50 British Transport Police (BTP) officers to help reduce crime at key stations. Full Article at The London Paper

    Related Topics:

    1. BBC News logo
      More police for suburban stations
      7 hours ago

      Page last updated at 09:36 GMT, Tuesday, 6 January 2009 Some train companies have replaced staff with ticket machines Key train stations in suburban London will be policed by 50 extra officers in a bid to reduce crime, Mayor Boris Johnson has announced.... Full Article at BBC News

    2. The Independent logo
      Letters: Moving Heathrow
      2 months ago

      Sir Peter Hall says putting Heathrow due west of London was a wartime mistake ("Should we build a new airport in the sea?", 27 October). But was it? At that time, much of the surrounding area was green fields and small villages and, although London's... Full Article at The Independent


    London in 2009: Slimline Boris Johnson promises things can only get better
    The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 5 hours ago

    On the 31st of December 1665, Samuel Pepys wrote: 'Certainly this year of 1666 will be a great year of action, but what the consequences of it will be God Knows.' The famous London diarist was not the only one looking grimly into the future; in the Full Article at The Telegraph

    London News: Boris Johnson announces more police for isolated rail stations in outer London

    The London Paper logo The London Paper 5 hours ago

    Tuesday, 06 January 2009 MORE police are to operate at London suburban rail stations, the capital's Mayor, Boris Johnson, has announced. Mr Johnson is to fund an additional 50 British Transport Police (BTP) officers to help reduce crime at key stations. It is also expected that train operating companies will assign 50 of their staff to work with the BTP teams. Full Article at The London Paper



    Celebrity Feature: What do celebs want from 2009? Here are their new year's resolutions!
    The London Paper logo The London Paper 3 hours ago

    Tuesday, 06 January 2009 ‘Lose a stone’ Boris Johnson, Mayor of London "My promise has to be to tighten my belt – quite literally. I’m as determined as ever to lose a stone around my waist but at this stage I’m unnervingly off target. I will clearly have to run further, cycle faster and eat slower. Full Article at The London Paper

    BBC Bias On Israel: Fabricant Notices

    Anorak logo Anorak 3 hours ago

    MICHAEL Fabricant MP - he of the Boris Johnson fright wig and keen eye - has noticed that the BBC is about as neutral as a Austrian jackboot manufacturer: I have been horrified and angered by the coverage of the Israel-Gaza conflict. Full Article at Anorak

    Met police officer numbers will not be cut, insists Boris Johnson's deputy

    Guardian Unlimited logo Guardian Unlimited 2 hours ago A police van in London. Photograph: Paul Owen

    Boris Johnson's deputy mayor today insisted that policing numbers in London would remain stable despite the Conservative mayor's decision to tell Scotland Yard to find £472m of savings over three years. Full Article at Guardian Unlimited

    Related Topics

    1. London Development Agency
    2. Ken Livingstone
    3. David Cameron
    4. Michael Bloomberg
    5. Ian Blair
    6. Gordon Brown

    More information on Borris Johnson Sourced

    • Unlike the current occupant of the White House, he has no difficulty in orally extemporising a series of grammatical English sentences, each containing a main verb.
      • Telegraph Column, Oct 21, 2008, endorsing Barack Obama
    • Chinese cultural influence is virtually nil, and unlikely to increase… Indeed, high Chinese culture and art are almost all imitative of western forms: Chinese concert pianists are technically brilliant, but brilliant at Schubert and Rachmaninov. Chinese ballerinas dance to the scores of Diaghilev. The number of Chinese Nobel prizes won on home turf is zero, although there are of course legions of bright Chinese trying to escape to Stanford and Caltech… It is hard to think of a single Chinese sport at the Olympics, compared with umpteen invented by Britain, including ping-pong, I’ll have you know, which originated at upper-class dinner tables and was first called whiff-whaff. The Chinese have a script so fiendishly complicated that they cannot produce a proper keyboard for it.
      • Have I Got Views for You p277
    • The problem is not that we were once in charge, but that we are not in charge any more... Consider Uganda, pearl of Africa, as an example of the British record. ... the British planted coffee and cotton and tobacco, and they were broadly right... If left to their own devices, the natives would rely on nothing but the instant carbohydrate gratification of the plantain. You never saw a place so abounding in bananas: great green barrel-sized bunches, off to be turned into matooke. Though this dish (basically fried banana) was greatly relished by Idi Amin, the colonists correctly saw that the export market was limited... The best fate for Africa would be if the old colonial powers, or their citizens, scrambled once again in her direction; on the understanding that this time they will not be asked to feel guilty.
      • Discussing his views on Africans and "Instant Carbohydrate Gratification" The Spectator 2 February 2002
    • It is said that the Queen has come to love the Commonwealth, partly because it supplies her with regular cheering crowds of flag-waving picaninnies; and one can imagine that Blair, twice victor abroad but enmired at home, is similarly seduced by foreign politeness. They say he is shortly off to the Congo. No doubt the AK47s will fall silent, and the pangas will stop their hacking of human flesh, and the tribal warriors will all break out in Watermelon smiles to see the big white chief touch down in his big white British taxpayer-funded bird.
      • Daily Telegraph 10 January 2002
    • The proposed ban on incitement to “religious hatred” make no sense unless it involves a ban on the Koran itself.
      • Daily Telegraph 21 July 2005
    • Ok, I said to myself as I sighted the bird down the end of the gun. This time, my fine feathered friend, there is no escape.
      • Friends, Voters, Countrymen p59
    • Not even Mr Blair has been able to erode the unions conviction that we all have a “right” to a minimum wage… Both the minimum wage and the Social Charter would palpably destroy jobs.
      • Lend Me Your Ears p387
    • Labour's appalling agenda, encouraging the teaching of homosexuality in schools, and all the rest of it.
      • The Spectator 15 April 2000
    • Not only did I want Bush to win, but we threw the entire weight of The Spectator behind him.
      • Have I Got Views for You p272
    • That is the best case for Bush; that, among other things, he liberated Iraq. It is good enough for me.
      • Daily Telegraph 26 February 2004
    • Dark forces dragged me away from the keyboard, swirling forces of irresistible intensity and power.
      • "A wise guy playing the fool to win", Sunday Times, 16 July 2000, p. 17.
      • While at the Daily Telegraph, explaining why his work was usually late.
    • Try as I might, I could not look at an overhead projection of a growth profit matrix, and stay conscious.
      • Beth Pearson, "Has Howard got news for Boris?", The Herald (Glasgow), 13 November 2004, p. 15.
      • Explaining why he quit after a week as a management consultant.

     

    • But here's old Ken - he's been crass, he's been insensitive and thuggish and brutal in his language - but I don't think actually if you read what he said, although it was extraordinary and rude, I don't think he was actually anti-Semitic.
      • "Quotes of the Day", The Times, 18 February 2005, p. 2.
    • I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around.
      • Hickey, The Express, 21 March 2005.
    • I'm having Sunday lunch with my family. I'm vigorously campaigning, inculcating my children in the benefits of a Tory government.
      • "2-minute interview: Boris Johnson", The Guardian, 11 April 2005, p. 7.
      • Asked whether he was canvassing at Sunday lunchtime.
    • Howard is a dynamic performer on many levels. There you are. He sent me to Liverpool. Marvellous place. Howard was the most effective Home Secretary since Peel. Hang on, was Peel Home Secretary?
      • Ben Macintyre, "'Hello, I'm your MP. Actually no, I'm your candidate. Gosh'", The Times, 19 April 2005, p. 23.
      • On Michael Howard.
    • What we hate, what we fear, is being ignored.
      • "Labour's cleaning up on the council tax", 21 April 2005, p. 24.
      • On the fears of MPs.
    • Yes, cannabis is dangerous, but no more than other perfectly legal drugs. It's time for a rethink, and the Tory party - the funkiest, most jiving party on Earth - is where it's happening.
      • "No one obeys the speed limit except a motorised rickshaw", Daily Telegraph, 12 July 2001, p. 27.
    • I don't see why people are so snooty about Channel 5. It has some respectable documentaries about the Second World War. It also devotes considerable airtime to investigations into lap dancing, and other related and vital subjects.
      • "What has the BBC come to? Toilets, that's what", Daily Telegraph, 14 March 2002, p. 29.
    • We are confident in our story and will be fighting this all the way. I am very sorry that Alastair Campbell has taken this decision but I can see that he got his tits in the wringer.
      • Catherine Macleod, "Angry Blair takes on press", The Herald (Glasgow), 24 April 2002, p. 1.
      • On Campbell's negative reply to the Spectator's report that the Government had influence the Queen Mother's funeral arrangements.
    • Nor do I propose to defend the right to talk on a mobile while driving a car, though I don't believe that is necessarily any more dangerous than the many other risky things that people do with their free hands while driving - nose-picking, reading the paper, studying the A-Z, beating the children, and so on.
      • "To the lady who berated me, I say: on your bike", Daily Telegraph, 1 August 2002, p. 21.
    • I forgot that to rely on a train, in Blair's Britain, is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil.
      • "A horse is a safer bet than the trains", Daily Telegraph, 3 July 2003, p. 22.
    • I have as much chance of becoming Prime Minister as of being decapitated by a frisbee or of finding Elvis.
      • Ephraim Hardcastle, Daily Mail, 22 July 2003, p. 13.
      • Asked by pupils of Gillott's School in his constituency whether he would like the job of Prime Minister.
    • The dreadful truth is that when people come to see their MP, they have run out of better ideas.
      • "What's wrong with 40 Liverpool Road?", Daily Telegraph, 18 September 2003, p. 24.
    • The Lib Dems are not just empty. They are a void within a vacuum surrounded by a vast inanition.
      • "The least said about Lib Dems, the better", Daily Telegraph, 25 September 2003, p. 24.
    • Any seat would be mad not to take him. He's a terrific chap.
      • "Keeping it in the family", Daily Telegraph, 23 January 2004, p. 29.
      • On his father, Stanley Johnson's plans to become an MP.
    • It is just flipping unbelievable. He is a mixture of Harry Houdini and a greased piglet. He is barely human in his elusiveness. Nailing Blair is like trying to pin jelly to a wall.
      • "The BBC was doing its job - bring back Gilligan", Daily Telegraph, 29 January 2004, p. 21.
      • Reaction to the Hutton Report.
    • As snow-jobs go, this beats the Himalayas.
      • "The BBC was doing its job - bring back Gilligan", Daily Telegraph, 29 January 2004, p. 21.
      • Reaction to the Hutton Report.
    • Some readers will no doubt say that a devil is inside me; and though my faith is a bit like Magic FM in the Chilterns, in that the signal comes and goes, I can only hope that isn't so.
      • "What's so funny about the Passion?", Daily Telegraph, 4 March 2004, p. 24.
    • If Amsterdam or Leningrad vie for the title of Venice of the North, then Venice - what compliment is high enough? Venice, with all her civilisation and ancient beauty, Venice with her addiction to curious aquatic means of transport, yes, my friends, Venice is the Henley of the South.
      • "Paying through the Doge for Europe", Daily Telegraph, 11 March 2004, p. 22.
    • He's lost the plot, people tell me. He's drifting rudderless in the wide Sargasso Sea of New Labour's ideological vacuum.
      • "Blair dead in the water? No such luck", Daily Telegraph, 29 April 2004, p. 24.
      • On Tony Blair.
    • Look the point is ... er, what is the point? It is a tough job but somebody has got to do it.
      • Toby Helm, "Boris Johnson named shadow arts minister", Daily Telegraph, 7 May 2004, p. 12.
      • On being appointed Shadow Arts Minister.
    • It was a stellar performance. I may as well give up now and make way for an older man.
      • Hickey, The Express, 12 May 2004.
      • On his father Stanley's appearance on Have I Got News For You.
    • There is absolutely no one, apart from yourself, who can prevent you, in the middle of the night, from sneaking down to tidy up the edges of that hunk of cheese at the back of the fridge.
      • "Face it: it's all your own fat fault", Daily Telegraph, 27 May 2004, p. 24.
      • On the dangers of obesity.
    • My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive.
      • "You ask the questions", The Independent, 17 June 2004, p. 7.
      • Asked "Admit it: you want to become prime minister, don't you?" by Amanda Findlay of Bolton.
    • I didn't see it, but it sounds barbaric. It's become like cock-fighting: poor dumb brutes being set upon each other by conniving television producers.
      • David Smith, "Focus: Big Brother brawl", Observer, 20 June 2004, p. 17.
      • On Big Brother.
    • I have not had an affair with Petronella. It is complete balderdash. It is an inverted pyramid of piffle. It is all completely untrue and ludicrous conjecture. I am amazed people can write this drivel.
      • Simon Walters, "Boris, Petsy and a 'pyramid of piffle'", Mail on Sunday, 7 November 2004, p. 7.
      • Denying accusations of his having an affair with Petronella Wyatt.
    • I advise you all very strongly - go for a run, get some exercise, and have a beautiful day.
      • Valentine Low, "Shiver me timbers Boris", Evening Standard, 15 November 2004, p. 3.
      • Cornered by reporters asking about his affair after a morning run.
    • Tremendous, little short of superb. On cracking form.
      • David Charter, Joanna Bale, "Tories suggest door will open for Boris Johnson to return", The Times, 15 November 2004, p. 7.
      • Asked how he was feeling after being sacked as Shadow Arts Minister for having misled Michael Howard.
    • Nothing excites compassion, in friend and foe alike, as much as the sight of you ker-splonked on the Tarmac with your propeller buried six feet under.
    • My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters.
    • I can't remember what my line on drugs is. What's my line on drugs?
      • "The Genelection Game", Sunday Mirror, 24 April 2005, p. 19.
      • During the campaign trail of the 2005 general election.
    • Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3.
      • Francis Elliott, "Boris casts his vote: 'Spectator' editor tells 'Desert Island Discs' he'll quit to spend more time with David Cameron", Independent on Sunday, 30 October 2005, p. 3.
      • Said in April 2005 during the general election.
    • Old Man Howard, that Old Man Howard, he just keeps rolling, just keeps rolling.
      • Andrew Pierce, "Boris on a roll", The Times, 29 April 2005, p. 40.
      • When asked by The Oxford Student whether he sees anyone amongst his younger colleagues who would one day replace Howard.
    • I’m very attracted to it. I may be diverting from Tory party policy here, but I don’t care.
      • Andrew Pierce, The Times, 30 April 2005, p. 42.
      • When asked about the 24 hour drinking legislation.
    • Life isn’t like coursework, baby. It’s one damn essay crisis after another.
      • "Exams work because they're scary", Daily Telegraph, 12 May 2005, p. 22.
    • I'm backing David Cameron's campaign out of pure, cynical self-interest.
      • "Conference Diary", The Independent, 5 October 2005, p. 7.
      • On The 2005 Conservative Leadership Contest.
    • I think I was once given cocaine but I sneezed so it didn't go up my nose. In fact, it may have been icing sugar.
      • "Londoner's Diary", Evening Standard, 17 October 2005, p. 15.
    • I'm a rugby player, really, and I knew I was going to get to him, and when he was about two yards away I just put my head down. There was no malice. I was going for the ball with my head, which I understand is a legitimate move in soccer.
      • Ed Harris, "Boris bites Herr legs...: The MP for Henley does his bit for Anglo-German diplomacy", Evening Standard, 4 May 2006, p. 9.
      • On his tackle on German midfielder Maurizio Gaudino in a charity football match.
    • Look, I wouldn't trust Harriet Harman's political judgement.
      • "BBC News Video Interview", BBC News, 2nd May 2008
      • When told the Harriet Harman (Labour Politician) thought he had won the election for London Mayor.
    • Had it been us staging the Games, I don't think we would necessarily have done the switcheroo with the girl with the braces
      • "Boris Johnson In Beijing", The Guardian, 21 August 2008
      • When asked whether he had any criticisms of the Beijing Olympic Games.

    More information on Borris Johnson UnSourced

     

     

    • I thought it was a 50-50 ball.
      • On a rough tackle on a German player during the England vs Germany legends match.
    • She's a method columnist, isn't she. She believes it while she's writing it. It's fantastic!
    • I'm making absolutely no comment...and no, I did not.
      • When asked if he intentionally misled Michael Howard, leader of the Conservative Party.
    • Ken [Livingstone] doesn't think he's got anything to say sorry for and if that's really his feeling, then I think that he should stick to his guns.
    • I think they get a fair squeeze of the sauce bottle.
      • Questioned by Michael Crick on his dedication to his political career and the Conservative Party, 2005.
    • Will I throw my hat into the ring? It depends on what kind of ring it is and what kind of hat I have in my hand.
      • When asked by the Oxford Mail if he will stand for leader of the Conservative Party.
    • I'm kicking off my diet with cheeseburger — whatever Jamie Oliver says McDonalds are incredibly nutritious and, as far as I can tell, crammed full of vital nutrients and rigid with goodness.
      • While campaigning at McDonalds in Botley, Oxford, May 2005.
    • Ian [Hislop] keeps telling me to sack him. It puts me in an impossible position.
      • On Taki, a contentious columnist in the Spectator
    • I’d want to get Blair and really interrogate the guy. I’d really want to pin him up against a palm tree and slap him around and get the truth out of him about a few things we need a bit of elucidation.

    [edit] 'Have I Got News For You'

    • I'm batting for an ideology which has been burgled by someone else.
    • There may be a reason I can't think of but the problem with that reason is that I can't think of it now.
    • Do I have to do this?
      • When told he was taking part in a special Mastermind round with questions on his leader, Iain Duncan Smith, during an episode of Have I Got News For You.
    • I've never seen this on this show before!
      • When told he was taking part in a special Mastermind round with questions on his leader, Iain Duncan Smith, during an episode of Have I Got News For You.
    • We're moving irresistably towards a conclusion.
    • Men women love love women.
    • I think it would be wrong for me to take the you know to block the path of the a needy badger.
    • Why are they called quad-bikes?
    • Is he [George Best] sleeping with Miss Jamaica.
    • Well, basically because of, for the money.
      • On why he came back on the show.
    • I paint myself.
    • What transaction happened here? Have I just bought your house?
    • I've walked straight into a massive elephant trap.
    • How do you know we can't deliver coconuts?
      • Replying to Ian Hislop's taunts regarding the Tories' apparent inability to deliver their promises.
    • I think I was once given cocaine but I sneezed so it didn't go up my nose. In fact, it may have been icing sugar.
    • Coconuts from the party that keeps its promises!
      • On Have I Got News For You
    • I'm in charge here!
      • When things on HIGNFY threatened to get out of hand.
    • Well he cheated death, and death is the one thing you're allowed to cheat.
    • I think the term is recklessly honest
      • When Paul Merton commented that he was refreshingly honest

    Attributed to Borris Johnson
    The President is a cross-eyed Texan warmonger, unelected, inarticulate, who epitomises the arrogance of American foreign policy.

    • Unsigned editorial entitled "Infantile resentment" in The Spectator, 22 November 2003, p. 7.
    • On George W. Bush.

    About Boris Johnson

    • Boris was told to engage his brain before speaking in future.
      • Conservative Party official, quoted in "Black Dog", Mail on Sunday, 12 September 2004, p. 26.
    • You are a self-centred, pompous twit. Even your body language on TV is pathetic. Get out of public life. Go and do something in the private sector.
      • Paul Bigley (brother of murdered hostage, Kenneth Bigley) to Johnson on Radio City in Liverpool. Quoted in Nigel Bunyan, "Have we got views for you, Mr Johnson", Daily Telegraph, 21 October 2004, p. 3.
    • He may seem like a lovable buffoon but you know he wouldn't hesitate to line you all up against a wall and have you shot.
    • Boris Johnson [is] known as the thinking man's idiot.
    • He's the sort of person who 200 years ago would have died aged 30 leading a cavalry charge into a volcano.
    • Boris Johnson, people always ask me the same question, they say, 'Is Boris a very very clever man pretending to be an idiot?' And I always say, 'No.'


    Apocalypse Now? Recession not end of world, says Boris

    LONDON (AFP) — The worldwide recession is not the end of the world, London mayor Boris Johnson said Wednesday in a New Year message quoting iconic movie "Apocalypse Now" to make his point.

    Johnson, a colourful former journalist who ousted veteran London leader "Red" Ken Livingstone in May, insisted that the capital will recover and reassert itself as the "greatest city on earth."

    "There are those who say we should look ahead to 2009 with foreboding," he said, in a pre-recorded message to be projected Wednesday evening on the South Bank, ahead of fireworks marking the turn of the year.

    "I want to quote Colonel Kilgore in 'Apocalypse Now' when he says 'Someday captain, this war is going to end', and someday, this recession is going to end."

    London has been particularly hard hit because of its world-class financial district, reeling from the credit crunch and international banking crisis which precipitated the global slowdown.

    But Johnson, a staunch supporter of the City and critic of those who blame the downturn squarely on irresponsible bankers, said London can emerge stronger when recovery comes.

    "We can speed the demise of this recession if we all help the poorest in our community and if we make the vital investment ... so that London emerges at the end better placed to compete and entrenched in its position as the greatest city on earth.

    "We are going to be working flat out at City Hall to achieve that. Let's go forward into 2009 with enthusiasm and purpose. I wish you a very happy New Year," he said. 

    Quotes by

    Boris Johnson

    To rely on a train in Blair’s Britain is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil.
    Boris Johnson quote

    Pyramid of piffle [no, not his views on Liverpool but a report Petronella Wyatt was his mistress]
    Boris Johnson quote

    Tremendous, little short of superb. On cracking form. [after being sacked of his role in the Tory shadow cabinet]
    Boris Johnson quote

    My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive.
    Boris Johnson quote

    Ken doesn't think he's got anything to say sorry for and if that's really his feeling, then I think that he should stick to his guns.
    Boris Johnson quote

    But here's old Ken - he's been crass, he's been insensitive and thuggish and brutal in his language - but I don't think actually if you read what he said, although it was extraordinary and rude, I don't think he was actually anti-Semitic.
    Boris Johnson quote

    I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around.
    Boris Johnson quote

    I say let people eat what they like. Why shouldn't they push pies through the railings?
    Boris Johnson quote

    Biography

    Colourful MP and editor of the Spectator, a full on Tory boy, and candidate for London mayor against Ken Livingstone, enjoy London!


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    Boris Johnson Keywords

    Spectator, Editor, Colourful
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    The Henley MP has had a colourful history:
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    A selection of Boris Johnson's most memorable quotes

    On George W Bush

    "The President is a cross-eyed Texan warmonger, unelected, inarticulate, who epitomises the arrogance of American foreign policy."

    On using a mobile phone while driving

    "I don't believe that is necessarily any more dangerous than the many other risky things that people do with their free hands while driving - nose-picking, reading the paper, studying the A-Z, beating the children, and so on."

    On commuting

    "I forgot that to rely on a train, in Blair's Britain, is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil."

    On Euro-scepticism

    "I can hardly condemn UKIP as a bunch of boss-eyed, foam-flecked Euro hysterics, when I have been sometimes not far short of boss-eyed, foam-flecked hysteria myself."

    On Tony Blair

    "It is just flipping unbelievable. He is a mixture of Harry Houdini and a greased piglet. He is barely human in his elusiveness. Nailing Blair is like trying to pin jelly to a wall."

    On becoming Prime Minister

    "My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive."

    On Channel 5

    "I don't see why people are so snooty about Channel 5. It has some respectable documentaries about the Second World War. It also devotes considerable airtime to investigations into lap-dancing, and other related and vital subjects."

    On being sacked by Michael Howard

    "My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters."

    On how to vote

    "Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3."

    On why he voted for David Cameron as Tory leader

    "I'm backing David Cameron's campaign out of pure, cynical self-interest."

    On drugs

    "I think I was once given cocaine but I sneezed so it didn't go up my nose. In fact, it may have been icing sugar."

    On the City of Portsmouth

    "Too full of drugs, obesity, underachievement and Labour MPs."

    On tennis

    "I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around."

    On the Liberal Democrats

    "The Lib Dems are not just empty. They are a void within a vacuum surrounded by a vast inanition."

    On George W Bush

    "The President is a cross-eyed Texan warmonger, unelected, inarticulate, who epitomises the arrogance of American foreign policy."

    On using a mobile phone while driving

    "I don't believe that is necessarily any more dangerous than the many other risky things that people do with their free hands while driving - nose-picking, reading the paper, studying the A-Z, beating the children, and so on."

    On commuting

    "I forgot that to rely on a train, in Blair's Britain, is to engage in a crapshoot with the devil."

    On Euro-scepticism

    "I can hardly condemn UKIP as a bunch of boss-eyed, foam-flecked Euro hysterics, when I have been sometimes not far short of boss-eyed, foam-flecked hysteria myself."

    On Tony Blair

    "It is just flipping unbelievable. He is a mixture of Harry Houdini and a greased piglet. He is barely human in his elusiveness. Nailing Blair is like trying to pin jelly to a wall."

    On becoming Prime Minister

    "My chances of being PM are about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive."

    On Channel 5

    "I don't see why people are so snooty about Channel 5. It has some respectable documentaries about the Second World War. It also devotes considerable airtime to investigations into lap-dancing, and other related and vital subjects."

    On being sacked by Michael Howard

    "My friends, as I have discovered myself, there are no disasters, only opportunities. And, indeed, opportunities for fresh disasters."

    On how to vote

    "Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3."

    On why he voted for David Cameron as Tory leader

    "I'm backing David Cameron's campaign out of pure, cynical self-interest."

    On drugs

    "I think I was once given cocaine but I sneezed so it didn't go up my nose. In fact, it may have been icing sugar."

    On the City of Portsmouth

    "Too full of drugs, obesity, underachievement and Labour MPs."

    On tennis

    "I love tennis with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around."

    On the Liberal Democrats

    "The Lib Dems are not just empty. They are a void within a vacuum surrounded by a vast inanition."

    FEMAIL TODAY



    http://www.boriswatch.com/


    borischristmas

    A very merry Christmas to all Boriswatch readers! We hope you have a fantastic day!

    If you’ve forgotten to send a card to a loved one, help is at hand in the form of

    Boriscards. Send a Christmas Boriscard, and all will be forgiven

    P.S. We will leave you with perhaps our favourite video…


    Scrapping the Charge?

    December 20, 2008

    Recent reports in the Mail show that Boris has a raft of new plans for helping to keep the London economy ticking over in these almost-recession times, one of which may involve scrapping the congestion charges altogether. He’s already spoken about his plans to cut back the western extension, but now it’s looking as though the whole system might be removed. It’s certainly the right time, if it does happen, as the credit crunch is making the future look decidedly dicey for London residents who’d be subject to the fee on a daily basis.

    The stats show that the charge has reduced congestion and traffic accidents (although apparently not by enough to meet targets, or as much as might have been expected), so if it does end up being scrapped, it can be written off as at least a partial success. There’s been no definitive yay-or-nay answer on the subject yet, but it’s good that Boris’s office is consistently looking to the future to see whether changes can be made.

    Is this the right move? Will these efforts really shore up the economy, or is it likely to have a limited effect (if at all)?


    Random and Competing Forces of Nature

    December 18, 2008

    borishairNo, that’s not what determines the legislation that comes out of the Mayoral office — it’s how good ol’ BoJo described his barnet upon winning an award for best celebrity hair this week.

    And rightly so. We here at BorisWatch towers have always been rather a fan of Boris’s do — in fact, several of our interns sport an identical cut — and so we feel the only question to be asked is why he didn’t win it sooner.

    On a side note… the two ‘most offensive’ haircuts in the country apparently belong to Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross. Now we’d hate to cast aspersions about the validity of the results (especially given that we can kind of see where the pollsters are coming from), but I’m sure we’re not the only ones who suspect a wee bit of political voting creeping into the mix. Not that that’s a bad thing, of course… if anything, it proves that Boris is popular with the voting public — albeit with the possible exception of barbers.

    What do you think? Will we see a plethora of thatched-roof style haircuts being paraded around the country by this time next week? Or is Boris’s style really one of a kind?

    An Open Letter to Boris Johnson

    December 15, 2008

    Dear Boris,

    Now, you know how we feel about you here at BorisWatch towers. We think you’re great. Really. Generally speaking, we think your policy decisions are marvellous, and as for your hair… well, it really is something spectacular. In fact, we’re hard-pressed to think of a time where we haven’t seen fit to laud your accomplishments and generally sing your praises.

    But you don’t half make it hard for us sometimes.

    We like the fact that you keep a very prominent public profile. It makes it easy (and fun!) to write about you, and we like having the Mayor of our nation’s capital be able to match wits with intellectual heavyweights like Jeremy Clarkson. We were even willing to forgive you for the poor laptime you gave on your last stint on Top Gear. We defended you to our friends down the pub. The sun was in his eyes, we said. He must have been ill, we said. You finished in 1m56s. We can’t go back to that pub anymore.

    But still, we forgave you. We almost managed to forget it, even, to scrub it from our memories the way it deserved, to keep your Adonis-like perfection intact in our minds. Then you went and did this:

    Boris Johnson on Top Gear.

    1m57s, Boris. You’re slower than Michael Parkinson. You’re slower than Tom Jones. You’re slower than Helen Mirren, and she’s the closest thing they could get to having the actual Queen driving round the track.

    We just don’t know what to think, Boris. We want to hope that you’ll do better next time — if there is a next time — but it’s hard to keep dreaming.

    Please don’t keep doing this to us.

    Yours, with a strange (and unfamiliar) feeling of disappointment,

    The Staff of BorisWatch Towers

    PS. The interview was great.

    Boris Goes Electric

    December 6, 2008

    Good Ol’ Boris has always had a strong position on environmental issues, specifically when it comes to cutting down on the emissions from the capitals cars — he’s famous for promoting the benefits of cycling, as well asdemonstrating the ecological benefits of the congestion charge — but, after a recent appearance on Top Gear, it seems he’s been turned on (no pun intended) to the benefits of the electric car.

    In his column in the Telegraph, Boris has pointed out that the electric Mercedes he was allowed to drive after completing his lap for the show’s ‘Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car’ segment in a Chevrolet Lacetti ran rings around the competition. Quoth Boris:

    As they have discovered on Top Gear, electric cars are not just glorified milkfloats these days. There is already something out there called the Tesla, which can apparently do 125mph and go for 250 miles without needing to have its batteries recharged.

    Such was the extent of this epiphany that Boris has pledged to keep his family car (a Toyota that, had it been a beloved family pet instead of a people carrier, would have been put down long ago) for as long as it takes for viable electric cars to hit the market. After all, at a penny a mile and with zero emissions, he’s right when he says there’s a definite economic benefit to stepping up research, and his prediction that (like mobile phones) electric car batteries will become the norm within ten or so years seems pretty spot-on.

    The episode is due to air this Sunday on BBC Two at 8pm. After his last — and, it has to be said, very poor — laptime on the track, will you be tuning in to see if he redeems himself? Or are his opinions about the future of the electric car more interesting to you?

    Evening, Commissioner

    December 4, 2008

    We here at Boriswatch Towers have previously reported on the kerfuffle that emerged between Boris and Sir Ian Blair. With Blair’s resignation and soon-to-be departure from the role, however, we assumed that any bad blood between the two would fade away, to be replaced with a professional courtesy and sense of goodwill.

    Oh, how wrong we were.

    On his last day as Commissioner, Sir Ian has brought out the vitriol in an interview with the Telegraph, in which he seemingly accuses the Mayor of using his political clout for personal reasons in an attempt to oust him from office. Why? Merely because Blair has been a controversial figure and has been in the public eye, rather than for any actual wrongdoing.

    Now, OK, we can kind of see his point: it’s very hard not to be a little bit controversial if you’re head of the Metropolitan Police. Still, have any of his predecessors had as much negative press attention as Sir Ian? Have any of them had so many press-described ‘blunders’? We can’t think of any, certainly, and while we’re not suggesting that Blair did a terrible job in office, there’s certainly reasons for him to have bumped heads with Boris that don’t include the political backbiting and Machiavellian machinations he seems to be implying.

    There’s no word on whether or not Boris will be giving a response on this, but either way, there seem to be few people clamouring for Sir Ian to reconsider. Is his departure a good thing for London’s police? Was he as inept as the media often claimed? Should Boris have tried to put his reported personal difficulties aside to work with Blair, or is he better off with a new Commissioner who better matches his vision for London?

    2012 Olympics: Breaking News

    A reputable news source has recently reported that Boris has officially claimed we’re ready for the 2012 Olympics… right now, in fact. How does next week sound?

    No, not really. As much as I’m sure Boris would like to be ready almost four years in advance, I think that’s asking just a little bit much from our mayor of only six months.

    Still, as the clamour of voices looking for a Games on a Budget gets ever-louder, with the Times calling for an Austerity Olympics out of respect (and, seemingly, fear) for the violence currently raging in Pakistan, topped off with the pressure of providing a comparable spectacle to Beijing ‘08, it’s nice to see that people are still able to look at the games (and, of course, our own, inimitable Boris) with a sense of humour.

    What do you think?

    Boris’s Christmas Gift

    December 2, 2008

    As it’s getting to that festive time of year again (not that you’d know it, given that most places have had Christmas decorations up since before Hallowe’en), many people have started to consider a seasonal break to our nation’s capital. Boris, of course, is well in favour of that… so much so that he’s announced a £3.25 million campaign to encourage folks to visit London this December. Given the current economic downturn, this can only be a good thing — like it or not, parts of the city need tourism to function properly, and it’s a multi-million pound industry when things are going well. Putting money into the system when it seems to be flagging in hopes of catching the tide of Christmas shoppers or people just looking for a seasonal West End show is a wise investment, and shows that Boris (contrary to what some people might think) does have a pretty shrewd head on his shoulders.

    Is London a good place to visit? Will it benefit from this cash injection, or is it just a waste of money?



    11/07/2008 12:23 PM Guardian Unlimited

    Diplomats deserve asbo for London congestion charge snub, says Boris Johnson

    11/07/2008 12:23 PM Guardian Unlimited
    London Mayor Boris Johnson on the balcony of his offices at City Hall. Photograph: Richard Saker Boris Johnson has criticised the US ambassador to Britain for failing to pay any congestion charges in London for the last three years and said he would
    http://content.usatoday.com/topics/quote/Boris+Johnson/0crl5qlapJ6Zg/0aG10dd1hQbLq/1

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