Stand aside, everyone: the Conservative cowboy builders are back on the job | Marina Hyde

‘Build, build, build,’ gibbers Boris Johnson, as the party that bodged everything now wants to tell us how it will fix things

“We will double down on levelling up … We will invest … to fuel the animal spirits … We will not just bounce back, we will bounce forward.” Thus gibbered Boris Johnson this morning, sounding exactly like Franklin D Roosevelt shortly after the latter’s massive intracerebral haemorrhage. Or, as the prime minister put it of his “new deal” spending plans to restart the UK economy after coronavirus, announced today in Dudley: “it sounds positively Rooseveltian.”

Related: Boris Johnson refuses to rule out tax rises to fund recovery plans

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Richard Desmond is an endlessly mutating affliction. We must be on the fifth spike of him | Marina Hyde

It’s such a tonic to see the porn publisher back in the headlines after Robert Jenrick intervened to approve his £1bn development

Richard Desmond’s autobiography is called The Real Deal: The Autobiography of Britain’s Most Controversial Media Mogul. You know it’s good because it received a five-star review in the Daily Express. Hard to pick a favourite passage, but I’d probably go with the bit where Desmond calls Rupert Murdoch “a worthy opponent”. Sad to think that Murdoch will one day go over the Reichenbach Falls at Desmond’s hand – but ultimately, that is what you get when you’re the Moriarty to Richard’s Clouseau. Imagine the show that Succession could have been, if they’d only had the ambition to be inspired by a proper magnate.

Still, it’s such a tonic to see Desmond back in the headlines. He’s resurfaced over this business of his £1bn Westferry Printworks property development that housing minister Robert Jenrick personally intervened to approve, only to later accept he acted unlawfully due to “apparent bias”. Up until Sunday, it had seemed as if Jenrick was getting away with this story that we’d all be talking about if only there weren’t all the other stories. And he probably still will.

Related: In Boris Johnson’s long history of lies, the Marcus Rashford one is the strangest | Simon Hattenstone

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