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Christer Forslund
11-19-2010, 07:45 PM
George W. Bush cant fight for freedom and authorise torture

If the Wests aim is to spread the rule of law, it cannot be achieved by vile means, argues Boris Johnson.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/borisjohnson/8133411/George-W.-Bush-cant-fight-for-freedom-and-authorise-torture.html
Boris Johnson 15 Nov 2010


It is not yet clear whether George W Bush is planning to cross the Atlantic to flog us his memoirs, but if I were his PR people I would urge caution. As book tours go, this one would be an absolute corker. It is not just that every European capital would be brought to a standstill, as book-signings turned into anti-war riots. The real trouble from the Bush point of view is that he might never see Texas again.

One moment he might be holding forth to a great perspiring tent at Hay-on-Wye. The next moment, click, some embarrassed member of the Welsh constabulary could walk on stage, place some handcuffs on the former leader of the Free World, and take him away to be charged. Of course, we are told this scenario is unlikely. Dubya is the former leader of a friendly power, with whom this country is determined to have good relations. But that is what torture-authorising Augusto Pinochet thought. And unlike Pinochet, Mr Bush is making no bones about what he has done.

Unless the 43rd president of the United States has been grievously misrepresented, he has admitted to authorising and sponsoring the use of torture. Asked whether he approved of waterboarding in three specific cases, he told his interviewer that damn right he did, and that this practice had saved lives in America and Britain. It is hard to overstate the enormity of this admission.

David Guyatt
11-19-2010, 09:43 PM
Giggles, smirks and knowing winks all round.

Pull the other one Boris - it's got sturgeon eggs cemented to it.

Bush arrested in London? That'll be the day. Fat Kissinger's had an international arrest warrant out for him for decades and still visits Blighty, secure in the knowledge that he'll never be detained by Inspector Knacker of the Yard.

Avast and begone Boris, back to your secret society Bullingdon Boys dining, to your 3k specially tailored dinner suits and piss-ups with grinning Dave Cameron, Georgy-porgy Osborne and Nat Rothschilds. Back to guzzling endless bottles of claret, sucking on your San Cristobals, touching up passing waitresses and grinning like silly school boys on the way to the slops bucket.

Bush, like Blair, are untouchables. They (and others too) could openly murder someone on live TV and still not get convicted.

Jan Klimkowski
11-20-2010, 06:48 PM
The background that David alludes to is London Mayor Boris Johnson's membership of the same elite Oxford University drinking club, the Bullingdon, as PM David Cameron and Chancellor George "Sneerer" Osborne.


Andrew Gimson, biographer of Boris Johnson, reported about the club in the 1980s: "I don't think an evening would have ended without a restaurant being trashed and being paid for in full, very often in cash. [...] A night in the cells would be regarded as being par for a Buller man and so would debagging anyone who really attracted the irritation of the Buller men."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bullingdon_Club

If some brave soul (such as a Spanish human rights lawyer) managed to make a citizen's arrest on Bush in London, I'm sure Boris would follow his hero Maggie Thatcher's example with the fascist Pinochet.

In other words, Boris would invite George W round for tea and then facilitate his spirting out of UK jurisdiction.

David Guyatt
11-22-2010, 05:46 PM
I'm posting below a piece in the Daily regarding anomalies in the well-known Bullingdon Club photo showing David Cameron, George Osborne, Nat Rothschild and Boris Johnson.

The problem with the photo is not who it shows but who it doesn't. It's an intriguing question because it certainly looks to my untrained eye that at least two other people have been airbrushed out - possibly three - and other persons moved in.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1080604/PETER-HITCHENS-Not-Kim-Jong-II-live-visit-Mandy.html


Who doctored the toffs?
I bring you the Mystery of the Missing Toff. Who is doctoring pictures of the Bullingdon Club? And why?

By a mysterious process, almost all photographs of this unlovely society for rich, young drunkards have now been suppressed, which suits David Cameron very well, since he is in so many of them, looking so very rich and arrogant. I have seen them.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/10/25/article-1080604-023EC66A000005DC-840_468x324.jpg
Two faces are mysteriously missing from this picture of the Bullingdon Club

But last week a new study of the lads appeared, featuring George Osborne and his (now former) friend Nat Rothschild. To the left of the middle, theres a mysterious gap where somebody ought to be standing but isnt. Odder still, theres a patch of shirt-front and waistcoat there, with no person attached.
Odder yet, Mr Rothschilds right trouser leg has a white lapel, not usual even under the bizarre dress code of the Bullingdon.

On close examination, the three seated figures at the front appear to have been stuck in place after being moved from somewhere else.
If you know whats going on, please let me know.

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 06:11 PM
A different photo with some of the key Bullingdon bullies numbered can be seen at the urL:

http://www.provokateur.com/news/index.php/2007/03/02/bully-for-you/


PROVOKATEUR

Bully for you

Time that Provokateur stopped harking on about itself and used the power of Blog for the forces of good, evil and general mischief.

Where better to start than by ensuring that David Camerons happy days at the Bullingdon Club are fondly remembered by all. Aaaah, those were the days. 1,200 tails, buckets of champagne and a rather fine sneer known only to the Ruling Class. If you listen closely, you can just about hear their braying haw haws.

Be afraid! One of these men could be the next Prime Minister. God help us.

Oh, and if are interested, heres the names of this bunch of splendid chinless wonders.

1) Sebastian Grigg

2) David Cameron

3) Ralph Perry Robinson

4) Ewen Fergusson

5) Matthew Benson

6) Sebastian James

7) Jonathan Ford

Boris Johnson

9) Harry Eastwood

Cant see any of this lot wanting to hug a hoodie.

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 06:20 PM
Convicted crook and fraudster Darius Guppy was a member of the Bullingdon Club, as well as being Best Man to Princess Diana's brother, the Earl Spencer.

Source: a Daily Telegraph article about the trashing of an Oxford pub:


During the melee the group had claimed they were members of the Bullingdon Club, a notorious secret drinking society made up of some of Oxford University's wealthiest undergraduates.

The 100-year-old club, whose previous members have included such hellraisers as Lord Bath, Darius Guppy, Earl Spencer's best man, and the diarist Alan Clark, has a history of drunken vandalism.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1478131/Oxford-hellraisers-politely-trash-a-pub.html

An article about Guppy's fraud, proposing an inane rationale for his crime:


HOW ROYALS, ARISTOS AND TARTS FELL UNDER THE SPELL OF ...

SOCIALITE fraudster Darius Guppy had all life's privileges - money, good looks and a brilliant brain.

He was also close pals with Princess Diana's brother Earl Spencer, even standing as best man at the young aristocrat's 1989 wedding.

But there was one fatal flaw in the Old Etonian's make-up. He found trying to make an honest living boring.

Instead he had the arrogance to believe he could commit the perfect crime and get away with it.

Even after his arrest, and in the face of overwhelming evidence, he was convinced he could fool a jury - just like he had fooled New York police and insurers Lloyds of London.

A friend said: '"Darius wanted to go against the odds to see if he could win.""

He planned his spectacular sting after setting up a jewellery business called Inca Gemstones in 1988 with business partner and former school mate Dominic Marsh.

Champagne

The pair jetted to New York in March 1990 where they told police they had been being "robbed" of precious stones in their hotel room.

In fact, the gems were safely tucked away in a secret deposit box somewhere in the Big Apple. Guppy and Marsh drank champagne before staging the faked hold- up. Then accomplice Peter Risdon fired a shot into a mattress before tying them both up in the bathroom and leaving the room's safe door open.

In what was described as a ""brilliant performance"', Guppy was discovered by hotel staff "sobbing like a baby.

The pair then convinced street-wise New York police they had been robbed by two masked raiders. Within five weeks, they had a cheque from Lloyds for pounds 1.8million.

Meanwhile they had flown back to New York to pick up the gems they claimed were stolen.

Only greed brought Guppy's downfall which ended with him and Marsh being jailed for five years in 1993.

Risdon was paid pounds 10,000 to carry out the "theft" and angrily confronted Guppy when he realised the huge scale of the sting.

Guppy's attitude infuriated Risdon who later went to police and turned prosecution witness.

Raising

Believing himself invincible, Guppy also tried to sell the stones in London's Hatton Garden while they were still 'hot, raising the suspicions of a jeweller.

In addition to jailing Guppy, Judge Andrew Brooks also fined him pounds 533,000 for conspiracy to steal - later changed to a compensation order.

Marsh handed over money but Guppy did not. The judge said he believed Guppy still had access to " ill-gotten gains" even though the fallen businessman denied it.

Judge Brooks told him: ""I take the clear view you should not profit from your acts."

But Guppy was freed from jail in February this year after a mystery benefactor paid pounds 156,000 to Lloyds.

Guppy, who declared himself bankrupt in 1994, was let out of Ford Open Prison late at night to be re-united with wife Patricia, 29, and two-year-old daughter Isabella. Patricia was carrying the child when her husband was convicted.

Her background couldn't have been more different from Guppy's privileged upbringing.

He is the son of writer and explorer Nicholas Guppy His mother Shusha was an Iranian folk singer and writer who had influential pals in the "Chelsea Set".

But Guppy's parents split after 12 years together and his mother sang in clubs to help pay his school fees.

Patricia, maiden name Holder, was born into a working class family in Sunderland and married at 18, divorcing two years later. The beautiful blonde worked as a presser in a clothing factory where she told a colleague she felt there must be more to life than a dead-end job.

Patricia uprooted to London in 1989 and met Guppy at trendy Soho club Groucho's. While he awaited trial, she was mixing with vice queen Zoe Bowman who was running an escort agency.

Bowman charged distinguished clients up to pounds 1,000 a night for high-class hookers on the books of her agency, named Diplomat.

Bowman, who claimed Guppy knew about her business, did not work as a prostitute herself but hand-picked girls and fixed up appointments.

Charming

The London Madam had been a guest at Patricia's society wedding to Guppy in July 1991 and her daughter Natasha, eight, was a bridesmaid.

Bowman rubbed shoulders with Princess Di, Earl Spencer and his wife Victoria at the wedding.

Later she said: "I chatted to all the guests and found them charming, especially Earl Spencer and his wife, who of course had no idea what I did for a living.""

Patricia blamed the stress of waiting for the trial for the loss of one twin she was expecting.

At this point, Princess Di's brother was a great help to the Guppys, lodging pounds 250,000 surety to keep him out of jail as he awaited trail.

The Earl also promised to look after Patricia and the surviving baby while his pal did his time.

Guppy had befriended Earl Spencer, then young Charlie Althorp, when they were at Eton and then Oxford together.

It was said Guppy harboured a secret and unfulfilled infatuation for his friend's sister, Princess Diana.

When Guppy was finally put behind bars, he whined that he had been hard- done-by.

In an interview with Hello! magazine sold for a reported pounds 75,000 he moaned about missing the birth of Isabella and watching her grow up.

It was certainly a far cry from his days at Oxford when Guppy swanned around the cloisters in spats, a waistcoat and monocle, introducing himself at parties as 'published poet and socialite".

He belonged to outrageous student societies which required members to have pounds 10,000 available to cover damages at binges where one meal included half a hippopotamus. Guppy also founded the Ranulph Flambard Society, a drinking club named after an alcoholic, homosexual bishop.

But he graduated from Magdalen College with the joint top honours degree in his year for modern history and French.

He tried his hand at various banking jobs but kept on being sacked because he refused to do jobs he thought beneath him, like photocopying.

Blasting

Before his arrest, he would cruise London's most fashionable spots in his black Mercedes, with the James Bond theme blasting from his stereo.

The pounds 1.8million proceeds of the robbery have never been found. He claims he handed them to a Middle Eastern businessman named only as Mr X.

Only last month he gave a newspaper a self-serving version of his prison "ordeal" and future plans.

It made no reference to a proposed career in video piracy.

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4161/is_19960407/ai_n14452491/?tag=content;col1

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 06:31 PM
As Guppy beats up the Earl Spencer over an alleged pass at his wife, who used to run an escort agency, Boris Johnson claims that these self-styled superior beings live by a 'Homeric code of honour, loyalty and revenge'.

More accurately, these toffs really are first class prats.


The revenge of deadly Darius
by FIONA BARTON

Last updated at 21:55 18 August 2006

Smeared with blood and sweat, the two men grappled and thrashed around. The taller man groaned in pain from a fractured cheekbone and injuries to his ribs and nose as his attacker savagely kicked and punched him like someone possessed.

As the violence escalated, three young children watched and cheered their father from the windows of their home.

The son and three daughters of the other man could only look on in dumb horror as their father was battered into submission. It was an extraordinary and shocking scene. But all the more shocking given the identities of the combatants.

This bloody confrontation was between the brother of Princess Diana, Earl Spencer, and his best friend, the convicted fraudster Darius Guppy. Guppy, who emerged the victor from the brawl, had deliberately lured his former friend, who had been his best man and provided 250,000 bail after his arrest, to his South African home for a showdown.

At stake was the honour of the wife Guppy adores and a bizarre accusation of treachery dating from more than a decade ago.

Spencer's 'crime' - an allegation vehemently denied by the Earl - was to have attempted to seduce Guppy's wife Patricia while his friend was languishing behind bars. It was a betrayal that Guppy, who has known Spencer since they were 13-year-old Eton schoolboys, insisted required extreme retribution.

Revenge has always been a dish relished by the disgraced Old Etonian. According to his old friend, Tory higher education spokesman Boris Johnson, he lives by the 'Homeric code of honour, loyalty and revenge'.

Indeed, as we shall see, it was his thirst for revenge that led to Guppy being jailed in 1993 for staging a faked jewel robbery and fraudulently claiming 1.8 million from insurers.

But it was thought that Guppy's wild days were over when he emerged from prison, having served half his five-year sentence. He declared himself keen to start a new life with his family away from the public gaze, first in Ireland and then in South Africa.

So how does Guppy live today? Where does he make his money?

Intriguingly, a Mail investigation has discovered that while he has an affluent lifestyle - including a mansion with swimming pool, international travel and shark-diving with friends - he has literally disappeared as far as officialdom is concerned.

He has no bank account in South Africa, no property or business under his name nor any registration with the tax authorities.

And he would have remained in the shadows but for the emergence last week of his act of vengeance when Guppy raised his patrician profile above the parapet to punish one of his closest and best-known friends.

But what was it that drove him to punish Charles Spencer?

Patricia Guppy, a pretty, delicate blonde from Sunderland, who once ran an escort agency, is understood to have kept the alleged incident that sparked Guppy's fury secret for more than a decade because she did not wish to upset her husband.

At the time, with her husband just starting his jail sentence, she was living on Spencer's Althorp estate in Northamptonshire.

Having turned down his sister Diana's request for permission to reside in the Garden House at Althorp, the Earl instead offered the house to Patricia and her toddler daughter, who was born shortly after Guppy's incarceration.
Friends of Guppy claim that while she was there - and later when she
for a face-to-face meeting came a month later when Spencer was due to visit Cape Town for his birthday on May 20. Guppy, who had returned from a European business trip specifically to confront his friend, called Spencer on his mobile phone and said he believed his story, but wanted to hear it from him in person.

A wary Spencer, who had married his second wife Caroline 'Pidge' Freud in 2001, agreed to meet Darius in a public place, but his friend convinced him it would be better to keep it private and assured him he would be safe at his house.

Patricia Guppy was away at a spa for the weekend when the Earl arrived at the house at lunchtime on May 21.

According to friends of Guppy, Darius asked his friend for an explanation and the Earl insisted he had never made advances on Patricia. Guppy accused him of lying and began punching and kicking him on the lawn in front of his children, who are said to have been 'cheering from the window'.

The attack left Spencer with cuts to his nose, a black eye, concussion and a fractured cheek bone.

It ended only when the new husband of Spencer's ex-wife Victoria - who also lives in the area - climbed over the gates to the Guppy house after hearing the fight.

Called Jonathan Aitken, though no relation of the disgraced former Tory MP, he was accompanied by Spencer's four children from his first marriage who were appalled at what they witnessed. Aitken pulled Guppy off and took a battered Spencer home.

Two days later Darius is understood to have written to Spencer accusing him again of sexually harassing his wife. To make sure he added insult to injury, 'friends' of Guppy let Earl Spencer's humiliation become public by briefing journalists and offering to show them Guppy's letter to Spencer.

The Earl has made no comment about the allegations or the attack. But the dramatic rupture of his friendship with Guppy has astonished those who know them.

The two were inseparable at Oxford during their wildest excesses, they were each other's best man and Spencer housed Guppy and his family when he was released from prison.

But Guppy's acts of retribution are legendary. At university, he famously engaged in a feud with a landlord during which he made a six-hour
abusive phone call and pushed fireworks through his target's letterboxes.
Then, in 1990, there was the tabloid journalist who Guppy wanted to have beaten up (with the reluctant assistance of the bumbling Boris
Johnson, who agreed to help discover the writer's address) for probing into his background.

But perhaps his most famous vendetta - until this week - was against Lloyd's of London. Guppy, who was named after the Persian king Darius by his Iranian folk-singer mother, risked his place in top-drawer society by faking a jewel robbery in a New York hotel.

He and fellow Oxford graduate Ben Marsh hired a stooge to tie them up and shoot a pillow so they could claim 1.8 million insurance to avenge Guppy's father, who had lost all his money as a Lloyd's name.

It was Charles Spencer who congratulated Guppy on his wedding day for fulfilling his prediction that he would be a millionaire or in Wormwood Scrubs by the age of 30.

And it was Charles Spencer who was rewarded with thanks for his 'steadfast loyalty' in Guppy's lurid autobiography, Roll The Dice. But the bond between the two men has been shattered irrevocably by the violent scenes in the quiet Cape Town enclave of Constantia. The confrontation has also raised fresh questions about the mercurial Darius Guppy.

Since his release from Ford Open Prison in February 1996, he has kept a low profile (apart from painting a Georgian mansion he bought in County Tipperary an interesting shade of lilac) and sought to escape his notoriety. It is perhaps inevitable that he ended up in South Africa, a popular refuge for a number of former villains over the years.

The fraudster, his wife - a former factory worker turned model - their daughter and sons are now firmly ensconced in their new home, bought under his wife's name for 433,000 in October 2004.

The sprawling bungalow sits at the top of a steep drive and is obscured from view by trees and bushes in the landscaped gardens.

Compared with the fake chateaux and huge Spanish-style villas that surround them, the house is modest, but it has all the accoutrements of a luxury expat life with its tennis courts and large swimming pool. Discretion is guaranteed in the oldest and most prestigious of Cape Town's southern suburbs. The place exudes the easy ambience of old money. Guppy's neighbours include diplomats, rich businessmen and Cape Town's settler aristocracy; families who have owned land in the area for generations.

Locals speak of him as a rather menacing, egotistical man with an interest in martial arts and extreme pastimes such as diving with sharks. But he remains something of an enigma to them. And Guppy, 42, would like to keep it that way.

He and Patricia prefer to socialise with a small and close circle of British expatriates including Charles Spencer's ex-wife, Victoria, a reformed drug addict, and her new husband Jonathan, a former Dior male model.Until recently, Earl Spencer, who spends part of the year in Cape Town, was part of their close-knit group.

The aristocrat has a grand mansion set in formal gardens with a stunning glass atrium just 200 yards from the Guppys and close to the impressive house sold by Mark Thatcher for 1.5 million last year after his conviction for attempting to help finance a coup in Equatorial Guinea.

The views from the Guppys' house, across the mature woodland and pastures of Bel Ombre Meadow on the other side of the road to the wooded slopes of Table Mountain beyond, are spectacular.

At weekends, the Meadow is thick with joggers - including Patricia - and locals walking their dogs.

It is Patricia, who celebrated her 40th birthday last week, in particular who appears to have settled best into Constantia life.

A model 'yummy mummy', she is a familiar figure at the village shopping centre, with its Cape Dutch-style limewash buildings packed with restaurants, designer boutiques and coffee shops.

She is a regular at the Carlton Skin Care Centre, where Constantia housewives go for their facials, and at the local Virgin Active gym and Constantia tennis club, where her sixyearold twin sons have lessons.

The children are privately educated at schools where fees are a fraction of their British equivalents.

Annual fees at the all-boys prep school attended by the Guppy boys are between 1,000 and 2,500 for day pupils, rising to just under 4,000 for boarders - a sixth of the 25,000 a year charged by Darius's alma mater, Eton College.

So life is good for the Guppys. But, one has to ask, how are they paying for all this?

Guppy left prison apparently penniless. He and his co-conspirator Ben Marsh were estimated to have made around 4 million from crime (there was a spot of gold smuggling as well as the insurance scam) and both were ordered to pay a 533,000 fine at the time of their conviction.

Marsh paid up the full amount, but Guppy claimed his share of the money had been spent or given to a mysterious businessman who had vanished. His fine was reduced to 227,000 on appeal and turned into a criminal compensation order payable to Lloyd's.

In 1994, he declared himself bankrupt in order to avoid paying the cash, but the judge, Mr Justice Holland, was unimpressed and ordered Guppy to stay in prison until he came up with the money.

Eventually, a deal was done and the fraudster paid 165,000 (borrowed from a benefactor) to get out of jail.

Guppy made an estimated 100,000 from the serialisation of his life story in a newspaper and set up a couple of import and export companies in Ireland, although neither seemed to do much business.

He also marketed himself on the after-dinner-speech circuit with Marsh offering, as his promotional literature says, 'incredible stories of a "James-Bond lifestyle including Uzi sub machineguns and crooks singing like canaries to the NYPD!"'

But, according to documents in his new country of residence, he is now a property investor.

It is true that he appears to have made a nice profit from his Irish house, which cost 250,000 and was sold five years later, after significant refurbishment, for 800,000. But no money from that project seems to have been invested in the Guppys' Constantia property.

It was bought from Jemplan Ltd, a company registered in the Isle of Man, with a mortgage for just under 500,000 - more than the total value of the house - from one of the largest banks in South Africa.

The house - and a blue Nissan Almera car - are registered in Patricia Guppy's name.

Her husband is not listed as a director of any company in South Africa, nor, despite his job title, does he own any property in the country, and is unknown to the main players in the property industry.

Guppy's 'business' certainly involves travel. 'He's never there,' says one neighbour. 'He's away two weeks in every month. It's always Patricia holding the fort.'

The tall, handsome Guppy is a familiar figure to regulars on the overnight flight from Johannesburg to Paris and has also been seen in London and Amsterdam.

His European sojourns mean that he pays no income tax in South Africa - residents who spend more than 183 days out of the country are exempt from tax on income earned abroad. But it means long absences from his family.

Patricia Guppy insists their marriage is as strong as ever - the couple recently celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary with a threeweek holiday in Istanbul. 'We're very happy,' she said last week at their home.

However, friends are concerned about the fallout of the confrontation with Earl Spencer. One said: 'Patricia is freaked out by exposure. Her big concern is the kids.'

She may be hoping that this is the last outing for Darius Guppy's violent alter ego.

Interestingly, he used a quotation from a famous Sir Francis Bacon essay to start his autobiography: 'Revenge is a kind of wild justice, which the more man's nature runs to it, the more ought law to weed it out.'

The elusive Guppy appears to have learned nothing from his 17thcentury hero, who goes on to issue this dire warning: 'Nay rather, vindictive persons live the life of witches; who, as they are mischievous, so end they infortunate.'Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-401320/The-revenge-deadly-Darius.html#ixzz162MNUCz1

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 06:39 PM
Allegedly, with the link no longer working:


The brawl at the White Hart in Fyfield was an initiation ceremony for Alexander Fellows.
http://www.oxfordstudent.com/ht2005wk0/news/bullingdon_brawl_ringleade r_is_princess_diana%27s_nephew
Alexander Fellowes is an Old Etonian who is President of the Claret Club, an Old Etonian Society which counts Trinity President Hon. Michael Beloff QC amongst its members.
Fellowes's father was appointed as the Queen's Private Secretary in 1992 and drafted her first speech after the death of Diana in 1997. His mother, Lady Cynthia Jane Spencer, is one of the elder sisters of the late Princess of Wales and gave a reading at her funeral in September 1997.

http://www.911forum.org.uk/board/viewtopic.php?t=16009

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 06:40 PM
See the link below, which is prefaced by a disclaimer from UK Indymedia:

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/10/411658.html

The audio interview with the pub landlord corroborates the claim that the incident was a bloody initiation ceremony.

The landlord called the police, and the entire incident was covered up...

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 07:18 PM
More...


Mystery of the two missing hellraisers; Members only: A photograph of Oxford University's notorious Bullingdon Club in 1992. Two mysterious pieces of clothing, circled, appear in the picture suggesting that the image has been doctored in some way. Only eight of the 20 members have been identified, including Shadow Chancellor George Osborne and financier Nat Rothschild.

DRIPPING with privilege and arrogance, it is an image the Tories have been desperate to downplay.

Yet their embarrassment over the picture of George Osborne in a notorious Oxford University drinking club intensified yesterday.

Two ghostly figures appear to be lurking alongside the future Shadow Chancellor and his fellow members of the hellraising Bullingdon Club The Bullingdon Club is a socially exclusive student dining club at Oxford University, without any permanent rooms, infamous for its members' wealth and destructive binges. .

The mystery over the snap from 1992 led to speculation yesterday that it might have been doctored.

Near the middle of the picture is the lining of one of the ?1,000 tail coats worn by club members. Yet no one is attached to it.

There is also what appears to be a disembodied shirt lapel.

Last night Bullingdon Club members said they did not believe anyone was missing from the photo.

But, in an intriguing twist, Chris Coleridge confirmed that the published version of the picture - with the apparitions - is the same as his member's copy.

He told the Daily Mail: 'I just looked again at the version I have and they are the same: both those things are in the picture.

'It is really weird. I can only assume that it is something the original photographer in Oxford did at the time. As far as I can remember we are all in the picture.

'I don't think anyone has been taken out. It must be just one of those things. It is possible the phantom figures in the pictures were accidentally added because of teething problems with digital technology, which was in its infancy when the photograph was taken.' A similar picture of the Bullingdon Club from 1987, featuring Tory leader David Cameron and London Mayor Boris Johnson, was described by critics as 'Lord Snooty and his pals'.

After the furore following its publication, permission to show it was withdrawn by the Oxford photographers, Gillman & Soame.

The Bullingdon Club, infamous for wrecking restaurants and other riotous behaviour, is open only to the super-rich and the sons of aristocratic families.

Mr Osborne joined as a student at Magdalen College, together with Nat Rothschild, who last week accused him of trying to solicit a ?50,000 political donation from a Russian billionaire.

During his time in the Bullingdon Club, he was reportedly nicknamed 'Oik' because he had gone to St Paul's public school instead of Eton or Harrow.

A popular lark among his fellow Buller men was to hold him upside-down by the ankles by and scream: 'Who are you?' After several 'wrong' answers, each followed by Mr Osborne being dropped on his head, he was finally released after squealing 'I am a despicable ****.' Former members maintain a strict code of silence about their activities.

Their unity was shattered last week however when Mr Rothschild made his claims, which are denied by the Shadow Chancellor.

They are among only eight of the 20 students in the Bullingdon photograph to have been identified.

The eight are:

1 George Osborne, eldest son of barone Sir Peter Osborne, a wallpaper magnate.

2 Harry Mount, journalist son of Sir Ferdinand Mount, another baronet. Formerly a lawyer and Latin teacher, he has written two books. He works for Reader's Digest and writes for the Daily Mail..

3 Chris Coleridge, descendant of the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge. At Oxford he launched a racy student magazine with Mr Rothschild which featured a guide on how to steal cars. In 2005, he launched V Water, a vitaminenhanced drink.

4 Lupus von Maltzhan, management consultant at Accenture and a relative of the private banker Bruno Schroder. He owns an estate in Scotland where he flies planes and breeds pigs.

5 Mark Petre, son of the 18th Baron Petre. After leaving Oxford he edited International Homes, a glossy property magazine.

In 2004 he died after an overdose of the sedative temazepam
n. at his family's stately home in Essex.

He was awaiting trial for driving under the influence of drugs.

6 Peter Holmes a Court, son of billionaire businessman Robert Holmes a Court, whose investment firm he runs. In 2001, he sold his family's theatre group to Lord Lloyd- Webber. He owns an Australian rugby team with actor Russell Crowe.

7 Nat Rothschild, ultra-rich only son of Jacob Rothschild, the fourth Baron Rothschild. He had a wayward start in life, marrying a model he met on a beach in India.

He has since turned his back on alcohol and runs the Atticus hedge fund hedge fund, in finance, a highly speculative, largely unregulated investment device. Originating in the 1950s, the funds "hedge" by offsetting "short" positions (borrowing a security and then selling it at a higher price before repaying the lender) against "long" , which invests in Russia.

8 Jason Gissing, one of three founders of the upmarket upmarket
adj.

Appealing to or designed for high-income consumers; upscale: "He turned up in well-cut clothes . . . and upmarket felt hats" New Yorker. grocery delivery company Ocado. The company is valued at ?272million..

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Mystery+of+the+two+missing+hellraisers%3B+Members+ only%3A+A+photograph+of...-a0187878396

David Guyatt
11-22-2010, 07:43 PM
That Cecil Rhodes was a member of the Bullingdon Club speaks absolute volumes....

David Guyatt
11-22-2010, 09:14 PM
I'm posting below a piece in the Daily regarding anomalies in the well-known Bullingdon Club photo showing David Cameron, George Osborne, Nat Rothschild and Boris Johnson.

The problem with the photo is not who it shows but who it doesn't. It's an intriguing question because it certainly looks to my untrained eye that at least two other people have been airbrushed out - possibly three - and other persons moved in.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1080604/PETER-HITCHENS-Not-Kim-Jong-II-live-visit-Mandy.html


Who doctored the toffs?
I bring you the Mystery of the Missing Toff. Who is doctoring pictures of the Bullingdon Club? And why?

By a mysterious process, almost all photographs of this unlovely society for rich, young drunkards have now been suppressed, which suits David Cameron very well, since he is in so many of them, looking so very rich and arrogant. I have seen them.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/10/25/article-1080604-023EC66A000005DC-840_468x324.jpg
Two faces are mysteriously missing from this picture of the Bullingdon Club

But last week a new study of the lads appeared, featuring George Osborne and his (now former) friend Nat Rothschild. To the left of the middle, theres a mysterious gap where somebody ought to be standing but isnt. Odder still, theres a patch of shirt-front and waistcoat there, with no person attached.
Odder yet, Mr Rothschilds right trouser leg has a white lapel, not usual even under the bizarre dress code of the Bullingdon.

On close examination, the three seated figures at the front appear to have been stuck in place after being moved from somewhere else.
If you know whats going on, please let me know.

It is interesting, I think, that Tony Blair and Peter Mandelson were contemporaries at Oxford University (Blair @ St. John's College and Mandy @ St. Catherine's College). Both were born in 1953. Wouldn't it be interesting if they were both Bullingdon boys?

Just a thought.

Jan Klimkowski
11-22-2010, 09:25 PM
At least one of Blair's university club photos can be seen at the links below, where he is making a gesture suggesting to fellow Brits that they are wankers:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6409757.stm

Full photo (Blair third from right, back row) here:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/07/uk_politics_enl_1172779548/html/1.stm

Mandelson has continuing relations with the Rothschilds, even commissioning one of their ilk to shoot a hagiography.

Mandelson could don the Bullingdon outfit and strike a sneering, arrrogant post like a duck to water.

Or, more appropriately, a fly to shit.

Christer Forslund
04-21-2011, 10:39 AM
Boris Johnson and Violence (http://craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2011/04/boris-johnson-and-violence/) by craig [Craig Murray) on April 20, 2011 1:10 pm in Uncategorized (http://craigmurray.org.uk/archives/category/uncategorized/)

Phone 0207 096 3708 now (+44 207 096 3708 from outside the UK). Trust me, just phone. You will be listening to a conversation between two men, one of whom later became Mayor of London, and still is, and one of whom was later convicted of armed robbery. And that is Mayor of Lonfon, not Mayor of Chicago. Full details here. (http://boris-johnson.blogspot.com/search/label/darius%20guppy)
This has not gone as viral as it deserves. A week ago today Boris Johnson held a meeting (http://www.elevationnetworks.org/845/how-to-tackle-youth-violence-discuss-it-with-boris-johnson/)on how to tackle youth violence. But here is a tape from Tim Ireland of Boris Johnson engaged in a conversation with Darius Guppy about having someone beaten up. While Johnson is not the one urging the beating, he does not protest against the idea that someone be given “two black eyes and a cracked rib”, and appears more worried about possible political fallout or attachment to him. There is a reference to someone “going through the files”.
I don’t know the context of this conversation. And it was not Boris who initiated the discussion. It is also fair to say he sounds uncomfortable about the violence. But his failure to tell Guppy not to commit the violence is difficult to excuse.
Here is a transcript from Tim Ireland:
Guppy: Boris, have you got this number?
Johnson: [inaudible] look, there is a guy at the moment, going through…
Guppy: You’re brilliant.
Johnson: … files at home
Guppy: Fantastic. But I am telling you something, Boris. This guy has got my blood up, alright? And there is nothing which I won’t do to get my revenge. It’s as simple as that.
Johnson: How badly are you going to hurt this guy?
Guppy: Not badly at all.
Johnson: I really, I want to know …
Guppy: Look, let me explain to you…
Johnson: If this guy [see/sues?] me I will be fucking furious.
Guppy: I guarantee you he will not be seriously hurt.
Johnson: How badly will he …
Guppy, interrupting: He will not have a broken limb or broken arm, he will not be put into intensive care or anything like that. He will probably get a couple of black eyes and a … a cracked rib or something.
Johnson: Cracked rib?
Guppy: Nothing which you didn’t suffer at rugby, OK? But he’ll get scared and that’s what I want … I want him to get scared, I want him to have no idea who’s behind it, OK?
Johnson: If I get trouble, if I get…
Guppy: You will not, Boris. I swear to you. If you…
Johnson: [unaudible bluster]… I got this bloody number for you. OK, Darrie. I said I’d do it. I’ll do it. Don’t worry.
Guppy: Boris, I mean it; I really love you.
More details from this same conversation are available here, including this nugget not included in the published audio:
Guppy: But Boris there’s absolutely no ******* proof: you just deny it. I mean, there’s no proof at all.
Johnson: Well yeah…
Guppy: I mean, you know, big deal. You’re sitting in Brussels and the day it happens you’re in Brussels, it’s as simple as that.

By now you may have noticed that Boris Johnson’s primary concern is that his role in this planned assault will be discovered. Also, just in case there is any doubt about the nature of the information he promises Guppy, here is a fuller transcript of the tail end of the conversation, where he promises to deliver both the phone number and address of the man Darius Guppy plans to have beaten in a revenge attack:

Guppy: Well do it discreetly. I … if it’s in any way going to look suspicious. That’s all I require – just the address: the address and the phone number … all right? Now I guarantee you, you have nothing to worry about. [Slowly, emphatically] Believe me. All right? You have my personal guarantee. I’ve never let you down, all right?
Johnson: OK Darrie, I said I’ll do it and I’ll do it. Don’t worry.
Guppy: Boris, I really mean it, I love you and I will owe you this, all right? And I’m a man who keeps my word.
Guppy was a Bullingdon Club member along with not only Johnson, but also Osborne and Cameron. I do hope you call and listen, and do hope it comes as a wake up call to those who believe the carefully crafted “compassionate conservative” propaganda.

Magda Hassan
04-21-2011, 12:06 PM
Thanks for that Christer. The Bullingdon boys are just a bunch of priviledged unemployable twats who think they are born to rule and have contempt for anyone not part of their clique and class. I hope this goes viral and Boris is called to account for his role in this. :monkeypiss:

Jan Klimkowski
04-22-2011, 09:56 PM
For more on Guppy, see post #7 in this thread.

Magda Hassan
10-03-2011, 12:30 PM
George Osborne: from the Bullingdon club to the heart of governmentThe politician has always operated on the fringes of the most elite institutions, but prefers to stay out of sight




http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2009/6/30/1246364766380/Elizabeth_Day.jpg (http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/elizabethday)


Elizabeth Day (http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/elizabethday)
guardian.co.uk (http://www.guardian.co.uk/), Saturday 1 October 2011 14.09 BST
Article history (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/oct/01/george-osborne-bullingdon-club-government#history-link-box)

http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Observer/Pix/pictures/2011/9/28/1317218627385/George-Osborne-007.jpgGeorge Osborne 'is driven not by any specific ideology but by the thrill of the chase'. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

This article is the subject of a legal complaint made on behalf of Nat Rothschild.
When George Osborne (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/georgeosborne) was 17, he took part in a school debate on nuclear disarmament. He was then an A-level politics student at St Paul's in London, one of England's leading public schools. On the day of the debate, a crowd of sixth-formers gathered to listen. Osborne, already perhaps displaying latent right-wing sympathies, was to argue in favour of the nuclear deterrent. On the opposing side, his classmate Sam Bain would put the case for the CND. But as Osborne rose to speak, a rugby teacher came into the classroom to say he was required to play in a match. Osborne rushed out, leaving the notes of his speech behind. "Some guy in the audience read it out and he won pretty unanimously," recalls Bain now. "So basically, I failed to win a debate against him even though he wasn't there."
For Bain the humiliation was not entirely unexpected. Even as an adolescent, Osborne seemed preternaturally composed, somehow older than his contemporaries and with a clear idea of where he was heading and of the kind of person he wanted to become.
"We were 17, and at that point he was grown-up in a way that no one else was in our year," recalls Bain, who went on to co-create Channel 4'sPeep Show and the new student comedy Fresh Meat. "He looked and behaved like a man who had already decided what he was going to do with his life."
The story of how that teenager went on to become the youngest chancellor of the exchequer in 120 years is an intriguing one. It contains many surprising elements, including tales of riotous debauchery, allegations of electoral malpractice in student politics and, at one point, an intimate encounter with the pop star Geri Halliwell – more of which later. But in many ways Osborne at 40 still retains the essence of Osborne at 17. Those who work for him now remark on his exceptional political brain, on his ability to outthink his opponents with strokes of tactical genius, to present even the most dense economic argument with an eye to what will make the next day's headlines and to know, deep down in his bones, what will win over a crowd.
"I remember many times when we were faced with a tricky political problem and there'd be a lightbulb moment," says Conservative MP Matthew Hancock, who was Osborne's economic adviser and chief of staff until last year. "There's nobody else I've ever met where that moment was so obvious – his entire face would light up and he'd say: 'No, we'll do it like this.' And it was always a really brilliant idea. He's very creative."
Yet for all that he inspires loyalty among those who work for him, Osborne has enough self-knowledge to realise that his public persona is fatally lacking. On television he comes across as stilted, lacking David Cameron (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/davidcameron)'s easy bonhomie and banter. In parliament his youthful features – a plump, pale face; foppish dark hair – only serve to underline the impression that he is an overgrown public schoolboy not quite up to the job of steering the country through a devastating financial crisis. His privileged upbringing – Osborne is the eldest son of Sir Peter Osborne, the 17th holder of a hereditary baronetcy and the co-founder of wallpaper designers Osborne & Little – adds to the tabloid caricature of a toff with a trust fund. His mouth, according to one commentator, "is curled into a permanent sneer so it looks as if he's laughing when he announces yet more cuts to public services".
Unhelpfully, he is forever dogged by two infamous photographs from his past: the first, taken in 1992, depicts Osborne as a latter-day Sebastian Flyte, resplendent in tails and a blue bow tie as a member of Oxford University's Bullingdon Club; the second, taken a few years later, shows him grinning inanely with his arm flung casually around the shoulders of escort Natalie Rowe, surrounded by empty bottles of wine and what might or might not be a line of cocaine on the table in front of him. Those two images have reinforced – unfairly or otherwise – an overriding public sense of Osborne as a dilettante possessed of a healthy sense of entitlement. At a time when he is championing a series of swingeing austerity measures, Osborne is only too aware that such a preconception is unfortunate.
As a consequence he carefully rations his public appearances – a tactic that has earned him the nickname of "the submarine" among Tory staffers. "He stays underwater for a long time and when he appears he prepares impeccably," explains Janan Ganesh, the political correspondent for the Economist who is currently writing a biography of Osborne. "He's very open in private that he will – in his words – 'never be a man of the people'. It's a combination of material privilege and more superficial stuff, like the way he looks and sounds… During the past election campaign, for instance, he was not visible. That was because he knew he was more of an asset behind the scenes."
Osborne at 17 could win a school debate without having to appear in person, but simply by having someone else read out his cleverly structured arguments. Twenty-three years later, as chancellor of the exchequer, that same strategy has been successfully refined and redeployed, albeit on a rather larger scale.
For Sam Bain, Osborne's erstwhile debating partner, there is a feeling of inevitability about his classmate's rise to power. "I certainly feel very old now looking at him as chancellor, but thinking about how he got there, it does make sense," he says. "You probably have to be working at it for 20 years or more to achieve that. It does speak of someone who is very single-minded, and whether or not you agree with his politics, that's a pretty extraordinary thing."
http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Observer/Pix/pictures/2011/9/28/1317221514158/Hague-Cameron-adn-Osborne-007.jpgTrue blues: Osborne (right) became shadow chancellor to William Hague (left) at the age of 33 in 2005, and chancellor to David Cameron (centre) in May 2010. Photograph: Andrew Parsons/PATo those who have observed his ascent from the outside, Osborne has always seemed to know exactly where he was going. Friends say that he is adamant that there was no steady teleological process – after graduating with a 2:1 in modern history from Magdalen College, Oxford, he toyed with the idea of becoming a journalist and pursued a number of dead-end jobs (at one point refolding towels in Selfridge's) before a friend mentioned there was a vacancy in the research department of Conservative Central Office. From there he rose to become political secretary and speechwriter to William Hague before getting elected Conservative MP for Tatton in 2001 and then being appointed shadow chancellor by Michael Howard at the precocious age of 33.
Anyone looking at that inexorable rise would be forgiven for thinking Osborne had a masterplan. "Actually at every step [of his career], he had massive doubt," says one friend. "It was: 'What the hell am I going to do next?'"
Although there might have been doubt beneath the surface, superficially he seemed ambitious from the off. During the early days of Cameron's opposition, employees at Conservative Central Office remember that Osborne's professional style was markedly different from that of the leader's. Whereas Cameron would come in each morning bluff and cheerful, greeting everyone by name, Osborne would walk straight to his office without a word and close the door.
"Osborne comes from this clever, entitled background; he's got this 'born to rule' attitude," says one peer. "He's sharp, but he's not as clever as Cameron."
The Cameron-Osborne partnership has always been close – they are godfathers to each other's children – in large part because of their differing strengths. Whereas Cameron is the public face of the party and the embodiment of a broad ideological vision, Osborne is the arch-tactician, the political chess player who delights in the game. He is in some ways the purest (and, some might say, the most terrifying) form of politician: driven not by any specific ideology but by the thrill of the chase, the exercise of statecraft and by ambition itself. "For him, politics is the biggest toy in the playground," says one acquaintance.
"His first thought is: what is the politics of this, both internal and external?" says a former adviser. "It's a great strength, but it can also be a weakness. There are plenty of times in politics where the right thing to do is not the politically correct thing to do. I think George is put on the spot in interviews when people say to him: 'Why are you in politics? How do you want this country to be?' That shines a telling light on him as a person and a thinker. His wiring is political and that means it is contextual, so his answer would depend on the prevailing political mood."
Occasionally his obsession with day-to-day tactics rather than an overarching strategy has led to criticism within the Tory ranks. During the 2010 election campaign, which Osborne was masterminding, he produced a "Top Tory of the Day" T-shirt for any staffer who came up with the cleverest publicity coup. "He loves that kind of stuff," says one political commentator. "He can put doing over your opponent ahead of the need for an underlying vision."
His Liberal Democrat colleagues in the coalition government talk darkly of Treasury briefings against them, always carried out by underlings rather than Osborne himself, who is careful to remain charming in person. "Of course it's partly Treasury arrogance – the institutional inability to give any other department credit," says Liberal Democrat peer Lord Oakeshott, who quit as a House of Lords Treasury spokesman earlier this year in protest at Osborne's failure to take strong enough action on bank bonuses. "Osborne is a very, very clever operator. He's got a real eye for the political main chance."
And yet Cameron – who is five years older than his chancellor – has been canny enough to harness this to his own advantage: he already has the advice of Steve Hilton (Cameron's director of strategy) for blue-sky thoughts about Big Societies and the like. Osborne, by contrast, provides the hard-headed calculation. He also has more liberal instincts than Cameron on issues such as abortion and gay adoption. A low-tax, small-state Conservative, he is said to find some of Cameron's money-guzzling social and environmental initiatives baffling. And Osborne can be radical: as a new backbencher, he proposed that the royal family should pay rent for Kensington Palace. It is for these reasons, says Ganesh, that "Cameron absolutely counts on him". They are a complementary partnership.
Unlike Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, whose alleged gentlemen's agreement in 1994 over who would stand for the leadership became part of New Labour political mythology, Osborne insists he struck no such bargain. "There was no deal over the rabbit polenta," he said in an interview six years ago with the Daily Telegraph. That, of course, does not mean he has no ambitions for the leadership – quite the contrary.
"To be a politician at that level, you have to take yourself very seriously and believe you can be leader," says a former Conservative MP who used to work for Osborne. "But I think they learned a lesson from the Blair-Brown years. And that was: never, ever let it happen to us. They are genuinely brothers-in-arms. They've always both just put winning at the top of their list, even if their outlooks and priorities are different."
The door between No 10 and the Treasury at No 11 is always open – in stark contrast to some previous regimes – and the prime minister trusts Osborne enough to allow him to chair the daily 4pm strategy meeting with Cameron's inner team if he is away.
"They were always very close," says one former Conservative cabinet minister, "but David was always clearly the dominant figure in that partnership. When I first met George and David for discussions, George would be silent. He would occasionally chip in, but it was evident that there was a lack of assertiveness and self-confidence. I think that's changed. He's grown in stature very encouragingly, because he needed to if he was going to be effective."
How would his lack of confidence manifest itself? "You'd notice it. There was a certain nervousness."
Again, there is a disparity here between the public and private Osborne. In public he comes across as being almost too confident for his own good; smoothly assured that his deficit-reduction plan is the right course of action even though almost no other western nation has followed suit and some economists continue to predict fiscal measures will cause sluggish growth and high unemployment for decades.
According to one senior adviser: "That's when his political instincts come straight through and he says: 'OK, I'm going to take some flak for this; I'll fight my corner.' I've not seen any impression of any particular gloominess. He's not often shy of political jousting." He is also well-regarded on the international stage, counting Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund, and US Treasury secretary Tim Geithner among his admirers (not bad for someone who used to have a beginner's guide to economics in his office).
In private, however, there are signs that his self-assurance in parliament is something of an act. At parties he often appears uncomfortable and guarded, as though constantly on the lookout for a potential conversational banana skin. People who meet him outside the House of Commons (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/houseofcommons) find him difficult to connect with. "There's an emotional distance there," says one. "Everyone who works with him says he's so charming, but I must admit I've always found him rather charmless."
And it is true that in the corridors of power it is difficult to find anyone with a bad word to say about him on a personal level. Even his most strident critics admit he is likeable, even if his policies aren't.
In coalition he has, according to one Liberal Democrat, been "a courteous colleague. He's a very smooth operator". After the election Osborne made a point of going to business secretary Vince Cable's office to introduce himself, even though it is customary for the more junior minister to make the effort. "He is always polite, quick and very sharp," says one Liberal Democrat. This in spite of the fact that, according to one Conservative peer, Osborne finds the constraints of coalition "extremely irksome". His relationship with Cable is said to be good – at least on the surface – but, says the Lib Dem: "We have to warn Vince about Osborne, because when someone's being nice to him he lets his guard drop."
Within his close team of young advisers – chief of staff Rupert Harrison, special advisers Eleanor Shawcross and Ramesh Chhabra are all in their late 20s or early 30s – he inspires almost fanatical loyalty. They are keen to stress his quick wit and dark, acerbic humour (although the best Osborne joke I heard was his remark during a Christmas party attended by the rapper 50 Cent. He is said to have quipped to guests: "That's Mr Cent to you"), his sympathetic attitude to mothers who need to knock off early if their child is ill and his willingness to give career advice to up-and-coming politicos.
Time and again I am told that "the worst thing you can do in a meeting with George is not to speak your mind". No one I talk to has ever seen him get angry, which suggests a remarkable level of self-control. "No, I've never seen him lose it," says Hancock. "He gets passionate about things, but that's different." There is certainly no phone throwing these days in No 11.
"The people who work for him say that Osborne is young enough to remember what it was like to have a boss," says Ganesh. "People say he's considerate, and as a result of this he engenders a lot of residual personal loyalty. He's developed a parliamentary following – MPs like Greg Hands, Claire Perry, Matt Hancock – all of whom worked for Osborne at some stage and who have retained their former loyalty."
If he ever did decide to stand for leader, an Osbornite cabal would already be in place.
Osborne was borN in 1971, the eldest of four brothers in a liberal-leaning, bohemian family. His mother, Felicity Loxton-Peacock, was a former debutante turned anti-Vietnam protester who eventually switched to voting Conservative after Margaret Thatcher became leader. His father, also liberal-minded, set up the family wallpaper business around the kitchen table in Notting Hill. It was, Osborne has said in the past, "a metropolitan upbringing [rather] than a landed, shire-county upbringing" of the kind David Cameron enjoyed.
The fact that he turned out a Tory is a cause of some amusement among his extended family. His brothers – Adam, Benedict and Theo – have all followed less conventional paths. Adam Osborne is a doctor who was suspended from the General Medical Council for six months last year after improperly prescribing drugs to a cocaine-addicted escort. He converted to Islam to marry his wife Rahala in 2009. Benedict is a graphic designer, while Theo runs an online bookmaking company.
As a child Osborne was, by his own admission, "the most sensible out of all the kids. I was extremely well behaved." His love of learning earned him the nickname "Knowledge" from his siblings.
In reality the name his parents gave him was Gideon, which he famously chose to drop at the age of 13 for the more straightforward George (his grandfather's name) because "life was easier as a George". Some of his classmates at St Paul's believe Osborne made the change in order to sound less exotic and "more prime ministerial". "It certainly falls in with my profile of someone who was already thinking about his image," says one.
At school he was clearly bright, but not especially popular. His personal tutor Mike Seigel remembers him as "one of the most talented students I came across in a quarter of a century. He had a determination to do well." Osborne went on to Oxford, where he edited the university magazine Isis in 1992 and produced a special edition partially printed on hemp paper to indicate the importance of "green issues".
Unlike his future boss William Hague, who had graduated from Magdalen a decade before, Osborne did not get involved in the Oxford Union. But as a 19-year-old he did stand for the post of Entertainments Representative in his college junior common room (JCR) along with a friend. It was here, perhaps, amid the cut-price beer and freshers' high jinks, that he got his first taste for politics. In fact his electioneering was so enthusiastic his rival for the position wrote a letter of complaint to the JCR vice president outlining Osborne's underhand tactics.
The letter, dated 15 November 1990, reads: "I wish to lodge a complaint concerning electorate malpractice on the part of Messrs George Osborne and [the friend] on three counts, namely:
1 The dissemination of five different wordings of posters, instead of the mandatory two.
http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Observer/Pix/pictures/2011/9/28/1317220520649/George-Osborne-in-News-of-007.jpgParty animal: the News of the World story from 2005 showing Osborne with his arm round escort Natalie Rowe.2 The posting of the above on places other than noticeboards, such as doors and walls.
3 The attempt on the part of Mr Osborne to pervert the democratic process by electioneering in the JCR.
I would urge that these matters be considered with a view to possible disqualification."
The complaint is signed by RD Harding, who went on to win the election. Rupert Harding, who now works at a language school in Finland, is rather embarrassed by the strident tone of his letter. "I have little to no recollection of the campaign," he says. "Perverting the democratic process I think meant going up to people after Neighbours and asking them to vote for him." Osborne was, in any case, roundly defeated at the hustings.
At Oxford, Osborne's contemporaries remember him as one of a clique of "braying public schoolboys". His friends saw a different side – "My recollection of George is that he was a nice bloke, quite approachable, shy and very bright," says one – but his membership of the notorious Bullingdon Club did little to dampen the perception of elitism. Infamous for its riotous behaviour, the society is open only to sons of aristocratic families or the super-rich. The initiation process was to down a bottle of tequila while standing on a table. Osborne's fellow members included Nat Rothschild, the wayward scion of the Rothschild family – a friendship that would, like the immortal Bullingdon photo, come back to haunt him.
The goings-on of the Bullingdon are extremely secretive, but one of Osborne's contemporaries, who has never spoken to the press, told me what happened after that photograph of Osborne, standing imperious in bow tie and tails, was taken. "We got on a double-decker bus and drove to Waddesdon Manor in Buckinghamshire – basically Nat's family house," he says. "It started to get really out of control. I remember Nat being comatose on the lawn, being tended to by a butler who was applying cold towels to his forehead, trying to bring him round. One of the guys got into a fist fight because he was Italian and a football match was on and there'd been some racial taunting. Plates had been thrown. As usual, it escalated. It was a group of young, testosterone- and alcohol-fuelled men, many of whom don't ever have to work. I think George was mildly alarmed. He was enjoying the food and wine, enjoying watching the football, and I just remember him looking at me with raised eyebrows at what was going on. I never saw him take drugs."
On a different occasion with Osborne also present, he remembers one Bullingdon member "trying to snort lines of coke from the top of an open-top bus and the bus was speeding along so it kept blowing away. I said to him: 'You're stupid. It's blowing away,' and his response was: 'I can afford it.'"
Another time Osborne and the other Bullingdon members went for a meal at a Michelin-starred restaurant in Berkshire where, coincidentally, the comedian Lenny Henry was having dinner with his then-wife Dawn French. "We interrupted the whole evening," the source says. "A couple of the boys started getting obnoxious and talking about their family wealth and Henry said: 'Actually, sod off.' Then there was a slight altercation when a member put a cigar out on someone else's lapel and it turned into a fight and furniture was broken. It was horrible, horrible. We used to smash everything up and then pay a cheque, saying: 'It's OK; we can pay for it.' It was pretty shocking."
How did an undergraduate who supposedly smashed up furniture and downed tequila get from there to become chancellor of the exchequer? "In a sense there's no difference between the Bullingdon George and the chancellor George: they both simply wanted to be the best," explains one former colleague. "Being the best at Oxford, in his eyes, meant joining the Bullingdon."
Osborne has remained understandably tight-lipped about his youthful excesses, insisting, even when the photograph of him with vice-girl Natalie Rowe emerged in 2005, that MPs are entitled to have lived a life pre-politics. But it certainly appears from this account that Osborne liked to cut loose and have a good time. And it seems an element of that has stayed with him, despite the guardedness he is now careful to assume in public. When I ask a senior coalition colleague how Osborne made the transition from party animal to sober-minded politician, the reply comes: "I don't think anyone's ever believed he's sober. I wouldn't be surprised if he was trying to relive the youth he never had."
A few years ago, at the wedding of his brother-in-law Toby Howell (Osborne's author wife, Frances, is the daughter of Conservative peer Lord Howell and the couple have two children, Luke, 10, and Liberty, eight), Osborne was, according to onlookers, encouraged to play a game of "pass the ice cube" with fellow guests. Osborne gamely agreed and is said to have found himself mouth-to-mouth with the pop star Geri Halliwell, who was there as the girlfriend of Henry Beckwith, the son of a millionaire property developer. Posterity does not record the reaction of either party. By all accounts, Frances would have taken it in good part. "She's very much her own woman," says an acquaintance. "They both lead quite independent lives."
More seriously, Osborne's taste for the high life also led to one of the worst errors of his political career. In October 2008, Nat Rothschild claimed that Osborne had tried to solicit a £50,000 donation from the Russian aluminium magnate Oleg Deripaska (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/oleg-deripaska) while holidaying on the oligarch's yacht with Rothschild and Peter Mandelson off the coast of Corfu. Such a move would have been a violation of the law against political donations by foreign citizens. A formal complaint was made to the Electoral Commission. Although the Commission rejected the claims and Osborne has always strongly denied the allegations, he was astute enough to know that it did not look good.
"He learned the lesson of his folly in Corfu," says one former chancellor of the episode. "It was obviously very silly. But the important thing was not that he did it but that he learned his lesson and that will prevent him from doing something stupid in future."
When Natalie Rowe gave an interview last month to the Australian news channel ABC in which she claimed Osborne had taken cocaine with her, the chancellor seemed unperturbed. He did not comment on the allegations, even when there was speculation that Osborne remained so indebted to the then News of the World editor Andy Coulson for not making too much of the Rowe story when it first broke six years ago that he recommended him to Cameron as his director of communications.
"He definitely thinks he's silly to have done some of those things," says one of Osborne's close associates. "But it does speak to his deep self-confidence that he's always assumed he'll be running the country and none of this breaks his stride."
From the school debating team to the Bullingdon and all the way to No 11, Osborne has always wanted to be the best. If this means the next logical step is to become prime minister, it would be foolish to underestimate his determination to get there.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/oct/01/george-osborne-bullingdon-club-government