Scrapbook may be late to the party — but is this not surely one of the best Daily Mail corrections ev-vur?

A comment article on 13 August about the European Court of Human Rights said that the supply of heroin and gay porn to prisoners was now a ‘right’.

We are happy to clarify that this was not meant to be taken seriously and is not the case.

While Viscount Rothermere keeps a veritable stable of columnists capable of such bile, congratulations to those that guessed the original piece was spewed forth by Richard Littlejohn:

An earlier version of this article was amended to make clear that not all prisoners’ claims to be allowed voting rights were made ten years ago. Earlier versions also carried a joking reference to the ‘right’ to heroin and gay porn behind bars. A clarification pointing out that this was not meant seriously was published on 29 September 2014.

Some clearly struggle to differentiate fact from fiction — which may explain why they’re reading the Mail in the first place.

Kudos to climate journalist Edward King, who spotted that Owen Paterson’s ‘abandon climate targets’ speech was actually written by Matt Ridley (5th Viscount Ridley to you):

The fact that Britain had a card-carrying climate change denier as environment secretary is scary. Scarier still, however, is the contents of Ridley’s Twitter bio:

Matt Ridley: ideas having sex

Perhaps “idea sex” is something that middle-aged Tories do with attractive party activists on WhatsApp — but we’re too scared to watch the video and find out.

Jacob Rees-Mogg

Tory toff Jacob Rees Mogg has been in talks with the treasurer of UKIPplotting to block government policy using the courtsThe Telegraph reports that millionaire Stuart Wheeler met with the Somerset MP in the Commons over plans to bring a judicial review against the implementation of the European Arrest Warrant.

Rees Mogg has already suggested that Nigel Farage could be given a seat in government.

This latest embarrassment to David Cameron looks to be part of a trend for Tory MPs to openly defying his authority. Appearing on Newsnight earlier this month, Essex MP John Baron refused to rule out crossing the floor to UKIP, stating that he would “never say never”.

This week two other Tory backbenchers — Peter Tapsell and Zac Goldsmith — were the ones to introduce defector Douglas Carswell to the Commons as a UKIP MP (VIDEO):

Introducing Douglas Carswell to Commons

Chief whip Michael Gove must have a very busy lunch schedule at the moment.

Stuart Agnew MEP

An events company trying to liven up their boring flood defence conference with a speech from a climate change denying UKIP MEP is one thing …

… but Austin Mitchell-style references to “rape” are quite another:

“Stuart Agnew MEP will recall how he was initially seduced, then financially raped; describe how the climate scare developed, produce some inconvenient truths, de-toxify CO2, recall ‘climategate’ and challenge the IPCC.

Flood Defence Expo Stuart Agnew

Agnew already has form, having landed himself in hot water over remarks that women with babies ‘lack ambition to get to the top’.

Scrapbook is trying to establish whether the provenance of this particular comment lies with Agnew’s office or the conference organisers.

Either way, one wonders what ‘event partners’ the Environment Agency think of their logo being displayed prominently alongside such a reference.

UPDATE: The conference organisers have blamed Agnew’s office …

“We did not write this it, was sent in by Stuart Agnew’s office an unfortunately uploaded to our website in bulk with 30 other seminar contents and this particular speaker’s content was not spotted. We have removed this from our programme the instant we realised, and are implementing much stronger checking processes from now onwards.

The political future of DWP minister Lord Freud hangs in the balance this afternoon — after Labour ambushed the Tories with a recording in which he suggests that disabled people are “not worth the full [minimum] wage”.

The details were released just before PMQs — with Miliband duly challenging David Cameron to sack the millionaire minister.

Scrapbook doesn’t expect to win any popularity contests for pointing this out, but in response David Cameron clearly referenced his disabled son Ivan, who tragically died in 2009 at just six years of age:

“I don’t need lectures from anyone about looking after disabled people. So I don’t want to hear any more of that.”

This comes exactly two weeks after the prime minister invoked his son’s memory as a backstop against criticism of his NHS policies during conference season.

New Statesman and Guardian writer Alex Andreou in 2012:

“Last week David Cameron referred to baby Ivan during Prime Minister’s Questions again. It was the sixth or seventh time he has done so, either obliquely or directly, in response to difficult questions about the NHS or welfare or disability benefits.

“In last week’s PMQs Cameron was asked by Dame Joan Ruddock about cutting the benefits to one of her constituents – a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy. In his response he denied that the benefits available to disabled children were being cut (a distinct untruth with regard to new claimants as explained in this factcheck) and continued: “As someone who has actually filled out the form for disability allowance and had a child with cerebral palsy, I know how long it takes to fill in that form.”

“No reference to the girl about whom the question was; no offer to look into her case; no attempt to answer the question. Only an out-of-context reference to Cameron’s dead child, offered as irrefutable proof that his reforms must be right and implied rebuke for daring to question them.

‘My son was disabled. This means your criticism of my government is improper.’

Jeremy Heywood

Cabinet secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood has taken to his Civil Service Leaders blog to deliver a patronising beat down to 250,000 civil servants who will strike today.

£200,000-a-year Heywood explains that the spirit of “public service” not only means ignoring an average £2,300 real terms pay cut, but that his own role can be compared with civil servants earning as little as £15,000:

“it’s what motivates all of us to do the best job we can. Whether processing tax returns at Longbenton, issuing driving licences in Swansea, or working with young offenders in Lancaster, everything we do matters because we deliver the services that people rely on.”

Judging by the 38 comments (and counting) on this article from angry staff, blithely insisting that ‘we’re all in this together’ has gone down like a pint of sick.

For some context on that, here is Heywood’s hospitality register for the last 12 months for which data is available, as referenced in the latest Private Eye:

Jeremy Heywood hospitality

Perhaps Heywood should invite some Longbenton staff along next time he’s schmoozed at the opera by City dealmakers. After all, civil servants are in this together, right?

Cheers for new Heywood and Middleton MP McInnes — but none whatsoever for ‘Kipper Carswell. Contrary to briefing earlier in the day, Lib Dem MP Bob Russell had his role downgraded, standing at the back as Carswell was introduced by Tory Peter Tapsell instead.

Was he leant on by his party?

Watch also for the highly awkward nodding between Carswell and Tory chief whip Michael Gove (at 2:20)

Parliament is back — now counting the first elected UKIP MP among its number.  And Douglas Carswell has found two sufficiently independent-minded MPs to ‘introduce’ him to the chamber — in the form of Zac ‘MP recall’ Goldsmith and (Sir) Bob Russell. This is due to happen shortly after Home Office questions.

Having taken the Manor of Northstead on 28 August, Carswell will have been disabused of any notion that his Westminster office could simply carry on where it left off at the end of the Summer:

Indeed, Scrapbook trusts that he has managed to sort out a new security card. A source witnessed the Clacton MP attempting to gain access via the Palace of Wesminster’s London Underground entrance — only for his card to set off the security system.

Red-faced Carswell pretended to read the Evening Standard for a while before successfully persuading the security guard to let him through.