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Wednesday, 22 January 2020

So Farewell Then Terry Jones

There are still - decades after the group’s last film was released - few who have no knowledge of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, the group whose BBC sketch shows, live performances and feature-length escapades defined great comedy for so long. They were alternative before the term was coined, worthy successors to Spike Milligan’s oeuvre, which spanned the Goon Show and the various Q series.
Terry Jones as Mrs Cohen in Life of Brian

That is why there has been genuine sadness today at the passing of Terry Jones, who had been suffering from a form of dementia, at the age of 77. He was a genuinely funny, but thoughtful and highly talented individual who had been Michael Palin’s writing partner in the earlier sketch shows, but later worked behind the camera too, directing both Life of Brian and The Meaning of Life. He was also a children’s author and historian.

During the BBC series, he was often cast as the straight man, as when Eric Idle played his “cheeky chappie” persona in the Nudge Nudge sketch, or as Arthur “Two Sheds” Jackson, who wanted to be known as a classical composer, rather for having a garden shed and thinking of building another. His tendency for the surreal was typified by the character Kevin Phillips-Bong in the Election Night Special sketch, representing the Slightly Silly Party (“polled no votes at all - hopes to double that next time”).

But what most will remember him for is those two last Python films: he was Brian’s mother in Life of Brian, and in one sketch of The Meaning of Life played Mr Creosote. Perhaps it was because he directed Life of Brian that he had so many great lines - “Why can’t women go to the stoning, Mother?” - “Er, it’s written, that’s why”, “He’s not the Messiah, he’s a very naughty boy”, “There’s no Messiah here, there’s a mess, but no Messiah”.
But Sirrr, it is only a waffer thin mint

And with Mr Creosote … look, there are some film scenes that, once seen, cannot be unseen. “The Autumn Years” from The Meaning of Life, where a morbidly obese man - Mr Creosote - waddles into a restaurant, vomiting profusely over the carpet, the staff, the table, fellow diners, the menu and his own food - is one of them. Then there is the food.

He is served moules marinières, pâté de foie gras, beluga caviar, Eggs Benedict, a leek tart, frogs' legs amandine and quail's eggs with puréed mushrooms all mixed in a bucket with the quail eggs on top and a double helping of pâté. The appetizers are followed by the main course of jugged hare, with a sauce of truffles, bacon, Grand Marnier, anchovies and cream. This is washed down with six bottles of Château Latour 1945, six litres of Champagne, and six crates, or 144 bottles, of brown ale.

Ms Creosote is then persuaded by John Cleese’s Maître D’ to accept and consume a “wafer thin mint” (“But Sirrr, it is only a waffer thin mint”), after which he literally explodes, spraying the restaurant and the remaining other diners with viscera and vomit.

The problem for all those wanting to call out the Pythons for bad taste is that the extreme gluttony, combined with Cleese calmly observing the explosion, then strolling up to the still-alive Mr Creosote and declaring “Monsieur, the check”, makes the sketch such compulsive viewing and very funny. Even if you have to have a strong stomach.

They really do not make them like that any more. Farewell, Terry Jones.
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Lisa Nandy - Serious Challenger

While some in our free and fearless press were waiting for Birmingham Yardley MP Jess Phillips to confirm her departure from the Labour leadership contest, the more significant news was that the GMB Union had backed not Keir Starmer, or Rebecca Long Bailey, but Wigan’s MP Lisa Nandy. Now that Ms Phillips has also backed Ms Nandy, the thought is beginning to enter that she might give the other two more than a run for their money.
Evening all

With the GMB’s backing, she is almost certainly going to get on the final ballot. That fact alone will sway some CLPs; it might even prompt other Trades Unions to back her. So, assuming Ms Long Bailey also makes it through, it will be a three way contest. That is why some on the left are starting to look seriously at Lisa Nandy.

And there is much to admire about the MP whose only previous appearance on Zelo Street was back in 2012, when the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog were attempting - unsuccessfully - to smear her over her rail travel expense claims. She had travelled in First Class; therefore something must, they deduced, be improper. It wasn’t: she was actually saving money on the full Standard Class fare.
But now the examinations are going to be more intensive. So how is she coping? Rather well, it seems, as Mark di Stefano, now at the FT, observed earlier today. “Nick Robinson: ‘Who is your favourite Labour leader?’ … Lisa Nandy: ‘I think there are different leaders who’ve done different things at different times…’ … Robinson: ‘Carefully avoided’ … Nandy: ‘Well it’s a daft question’”. That was not the only interviewer getting short shrift.

She also went on ITV breakfast offering Good Morning Britain and put self-publicist extraordinaire Piers Morgan back in his box. After Ms Nandy concluded that coverage of the Duchess of Sussex “has not shown the British media in its best light”, off went Morgan in his best rant-while-monopolising-the-attention manner. “The reality … [is] Meghan Markle's had exactly the same level of treatment as someone like Kate Middleton, for example. Good and bad in equal measures”. And he was just getting warmed up.
If you're a member of the royal family, you get acres of press coverage. I would say 70% of the Meghan coverage has been positive, 30% has been negative. And she just doesn't like the negative stuff. It's got nothing to do with her skin colour, nothing to do with her gender. It's just they've done stuff that the public, and the media reflect British public opinion most of the time, thought was wrong”. Then came a pause.

And then came the put-down. "If you don’t mind me saying, how on earth would you know? As someone who’s never had to deal with ingrained prejudice, you're not in a position to understand people who have … The way Meghan Markle was treated, I didn't like it at all”.
Now, those two exchanges do not make a conclusive case for Lisa Nandy to be elevated to the post of Labour leader. But they speak to an assurance, a confidence, that any leader needs in navigating their way through the media minefield. We have a media that is, overall, innately hostile to the Labour leadership right now. To have a leader prepared to take them on in a level-headed yet fair, but firm and decisive way, is always a bonus.

Lisa Nandy is proving to be a serious challenger. Do not take her candidacy lightly.
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Glenn Greenwald Charges WORRYING

Journalism, so the saying goes, is publishing what someone does not want to see published, all else being no more than PR. That is certainly the case with Glenn Greenwald, nowadays writing for The Intercept, who resides in Brazil, and who has embarrassed Government agencies around the world with his work.
Glenn Greenwald

It was Greenwald whose partner David Miranda was stopped and interrogated at London’s Heathrow airport while returning from Berlin to Rio de Janeiro. Miranda had been visiting another journalist, Laura Poitras, in Berlin. Our free and fearless press claimed that he had an encrypted device that contained 58,000 secret documents - but, as the device was encrypted and the spooks couldn’t crack it, how did they know? They didn’t.

The press had gone along with the spooks. The Guardian, which did not, was leaned on and had to demonstrate it had destroyed two hard drives in the presence of security service representatives. Then-editor Alan Rusbridger knows all about the reach of the spooks, and so his latest warning carries additional urgency.
Jair Bolsonaro - Mr Bridger was right

The charges against [Julian] Assange are framed in a similar way to the charges on [Glenn Greenwald]. Both are seen as some by mavericks. But let these attacks pass and mainstream journalists will absolutely be next”. Greenwald is now the subject of charges laid by the new Government in Brazil. The HuffPost agrees with Rusbridger.

Brazilian authorities have charged journalist Glenn Greenwald with cybercrimes, an alarming sign that Brazil’s increasingly authoritarian government is punishing a journalist for revealing explosive information”. The New York Times has told that “Greenwald was accused of participating in a ‘criminal organization’ that hacked the phones of several Brazilian authorities”. What he did was to expose rampant corruption. There was more.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro began publicly threatening Greenwald after The Intercept, an investigative outlet Greenwald co-founded, began publishing articles in June 2019 that exposed ethical and legal misconduct by Brazil’s justice minister Sérgio Moro and chief anti-corruption prosecutor Deltan Dallagnol. The stories were based on documents, recordings, and private WhatsApp messages leaked anonymously”.
Greenwald said “he and his husband, Brazilian congress member David Miranda, began receiving ‘very graphic, detailed, and thought-out’ threats soon afterward, many of which ‘contained substantial personal and private information about us.’” He also pointed out “Less than two months ago, after examining the same evidence cited today by Brazil’s Public Ministry, the Federal Police stated that not only have I never committed any crimes in my contacts with our source, but also that I exercised extreme caution as a journalist”.
So now that he has been charged instead, eyebrows are being raised and concerns aired. The ACLU has called the Brazilian authorities’ actions for what they are: “Our government must immediately condemn this outrageous assault on the freedom of the press, and recognize that its attacks on press freedoms at home have consequences for American journalists doing their jobs abroad, like Glenn Greenwald”. Quite.

Bolsonaro’s goons need to stop blaming others for their corrupt and improper behaviour, stop the threats, and get their own house in order first. Journalism is still not terrorism.
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Tuesday, 21 January 2020

Labour Leadership - And Then There Were Four

Getting on the ballot paper in the Labour leadership contest is not the most straightforward of tasks. For starters, you don’t just put your name down and get put before the membership. Nor is it like the Tories, where they simply get MPs to whittle the candidates down to a chosen two before asking the rank and file. To get to the final stage of the Labour leadership race, you have to prove a wide range of support.
And it's tararabit from her

Securing the nomination of enough MPs is one thing: then comes the search for nominations from Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs), as well as Trades Unions or other affiliated groups. The latter hurdle has already been cleared by frontrunner Keir Starmer; it was becoming increasingly clear that this would be too much for Jess Phillips.
And so it came to pass: Sky News’ Joe Pike told this morning that “[Jess Phillips] is NOT attending this morning’s GMB hustings. All four other candidates have arrived at TUC HQ”. Owen Jones, who clearly has reliable sources in the Labour Party, added “I'm hearing from several sources that Jess Phillips is considering withdrawing from the contest today”.
Pike then returned to the subject later. “I understand Phillips will send her supporters a ‘message about her candidacy’ at approx 3pm”. And Jones had a warning for all those who think this leadership contest thing is a piece of cake once you have a few media cheerleaders: “Jess Phillips is the latest victim of 'Centrist Hack Syndrome': politicians who are serenaded by media supporters, told they will flourish if they only take the leap, and then collide with the reality that politics is actually very very hard”. Dead right it is.
He later made sure everyone knew “As I revealed this morning, Jess Phillips has withdrawn from Labour's leadership contest”. She conceded that Labour needed a leader “who can unite all parts of our movement, the union movement, members and elected representatives … I have to also be honest with myself, as I said I always would be throughout this campaign. At this time, that person is not me”. There was more.
In order to win the country, we are going to have to find a candidate, in this race, who can do all of that, and then take that message out to the country. A message of hope and change, that things can be better … I will always speak out and I promise that we will change the problems in our party that we have seen. I'm going to go out into the country and join the fight back”. She has not yet endorsed any one other candidate.
Jess Phillips was probably never going to get the support she needed from CLPs and Unions. Perhaps she should have listened to those in the party, rather than those outside it, before taking that leap into the arena. Her problem is not personal appeal and likability - as I pointed out recently, she has that in abundance - but what might be termed an excess of candour, combined with what can come across as a lack of sensitivity.
Also, making pals with the likes of Jacob Rees Mogg might have made for good copy, but was always going to antagonise many rank and file party members and Trades Unionists. That isn’t to say she should not have a role in a future Labour shadow cabinet - I think she will - but that the Top Job is not for her. And that will be the case for some time to come.

So farewell then Jess Phillips. Will anyone else drop out before the voting starts?
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UK Growth To Outstrip EU? Maybe Not

Allison Pearson, the usually wacko pundit now at the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph, yesterday declared that she was a thicko, then added “Exactly, as we thickos predicted IMF: UK economy to grow faster than eurozone after Brexit”. Could this be true? If so, it would be the Brexiteers’ very own Holy Grail, a result that not even diehard Tories could have hoped for before last month’s General Election.
Maybe there was a nugget of truth in the claim: after all, it wasn’t just Mail Online that was pitching the idea. This morning’s edition of the Murdoch Times claimed “British economy will grow faster than Eurozone rivals, says IMF”. The Telegraph, for some reason, relegates the happy news to a smaller front page item, but nevertheless still claims “UK will outperform Eurozone, says IMF”. Others are proclaiming this new reality.

Like, for instance, the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog, claimingThe IMF has predicted that the the UK economy will outpace the Eurozone in its new forecasts released yesterday. The forecasts, stretching two years in[to] the future, show the UK’s growth will accelerate in both 2020 and 2021 … Only the US and Canada are set to grow faster out of the world’s major advanced economies”.

That would be a remarkable outcome. The problem is that it’s not what the IMF predicted, and the headline in Ms Phillips’ Tweet - “IMF: UK economic growth dependant on orderly Brexit” - gives a strong hint why that might be. Even the upbeat Mail Online report onlySuggests UK economy could grow 1.4 per cent in 2020 and 1.5 per cent in 2021” and warns “But IMF warns UK growth is dependent on 'gradual transition' away from EU”.

Moreover, the Guardian has stressedThe [IMF] has warned that the world economy is increasingly vulnerable to the impact of the climate emergency as the Washington-based organisation downgraded its forecasts for 2020 and 2021” before adding “The UK is expected to grow only modestly and in line with the IMF’s previous forecast at 1.3% last year, 1.4% this year and 1.5% next year. This is based on an orderly exit from the EU later this year and a smooth transition to a new trading relationship from 2021”.
Orderly exit”. “Smooth transition”. What might that mean? The Independent’s report spells it out. “‘The growth forecast assumes an orderly exit from the European Union at the end of January followed by a gradual transition to a new economic relationship,’ [the IMF] World Economic Outlook said, adding that its forecasts depended on the UK and EU ‘averting’ a no-deal exit”. Averting a no-deal exit. That’s what it means.

Moreover, if you actually read the IMF’s report, this is what it says about the UK: “In the United Kingdom, growth is expected to stabilize at 1.4 percent in 2020 and firm up to 1.5 percent in 2021 - unchanged from the October WEO”. Anyone would think from the press optimism that there had been an upward revision of previous forecasts. Nope.

The IMF also says of the Eurozone “Projected improvements in external demand support the anticipated firming of growth”. And no caveats about orderly exits or smooth transitions.The optimism comes with a whole row of very large asterisks.

The IMF says No No Deal. No Hard Brexit. Or Else. What you will not read in the papers.
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Laurence Fox - Maybe Slightly Racist

Minor Thesp Laurence Fox has wasted no time in capitalising on his appearance last Thursday on BBC Question Time, proclaiming to anyone who will listen that even if he is white and privileged, he is the victim of something called “wokeness”, which we are told is a Very Bad Thing Indeed. His problem is that, although many in our free and fearless press enjoy a little race baiting now and then, they also need clicks and sales.
So it was that the Mail’s website reported on his appearance with self-promoting TalkRADIO host Julia Hartley Dooda yesterday: “Actor Laurence Fox said this morning that 'woke' people are 'fundamentally racist' and blasted the singer Lily Allen for telling him to stick to acting”. He told Ms Hartley Dooda “that the country is tired of being told it's racist”.

There was more. “The musician also slammed 'woke' culture … Fox said that it was the woke who are actually guilty of racism against the white people they accuse … ’What they are accusing you of is what they are,' he said. 'They are everything they accuse you of. The wokist are fundamentally racist.' He added: 'Identity politics is extremely racist.’” Ignorance is strength. Anti-racism is racism. Right is left. Wibble. Hatstand.

But sadly, Mail Online also noticed that Fox had sat down with James “saviour of Western civilisation” Delingpole for a podcast last week, and made a discovery that may prove highly embarrassing. The headline, “Actor Laurence Fox slams Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes over 'incongruous' Sikh soldier in blockbuster movie 1917 as he says 'forcing diversity on people' is 'institutionally racist’”, gives a rather large clue.
So what has The Great Man said this time? “Laurence Fox has risked sparking further controversy by criticising Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes for including a Sikh soldier in his World War I drama 1917 … [he] questioned the credibility of the film's storyline and what he describes as the 'incongruous' inclusion of a Sikh soldier, Sepoy Jondalar, played by Nabhaan Rizwan, in the ranks of British forces”. Do go on.

This, says Fox, causes 'a very heightened awareness of the colour of someone's skin' because of 'the oddness of the casting’ … Speaking on writer James Delingpole's podcast, Fox, until recently best known as the star of ITV drama Lewis, adds: 'It's like, 'There were Sikhs fighting in this war' . . . OK, you're now diverting me away from what the story is. There is something institutionally racist about forcing diversity on people in that way.’

But it was nothing personal. "Fox emphasises that his observations are no reflection on the quality of Rizwan's performance … 'He's great in it,' he says, before arguing that having a Sikh appear in the British Army 'did sort of flick me out of what is essentially a one-shot film [because] it's just incongruous with the story’”. A Sikh in World War 1? Incongruous?

As the BBC has reported, “Approximately 1.3 million Indian soldiers served in World War One, and over 74,000 of them lost their lives … It was Indian jawans (junior soldiers) who stopped the German advance at Ypres in the autumn of 1914 … while the British were still recruiting and training their own forces … Nearly 700,000 Indian sepoys (infantry privates) fought in Mesopotamia against the Ottoman Empire, Germany's ally, many of them Indian Muslims taking up arms against their co-religionists in defence of the British Empire

And Sikhs. But their heroism has offended Laurence Fox. Who’s not really racist.
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Monday, 20 January 2020

Laurence Fox - Floored By The Incestuous Right

When actor Laurence Fox appeared on BBC Question Time last Thursday, it seems it was not the first, and certainly not the last, attention seeking appearance to be inflicted upon an unsuspecting public. He had already recorded a podcast which is now being eagerly promoted by James “saviour of Western civilisation” Delingpole, part of the UK presence of that convocation of the irredeemably batshit otherwise known as Breitbart.
What do you mean "Laurence who"?

Fox then went on Murdoch properly TalkRADIO this morning to tell the world how all those Rotten Lefties™ had wronged him, and in this he was assisted by the not-at-all screamingly right-wing Julia Hartley Dooda. From this it is not difficult to see that Fox’s preferred choice of media outlets might just place him out there on the right, too.
"Gay marriage" ... "Global warming" ... "Red meat conservatism" ... "Pointless ranting" ... "Continued irrelevance"
Pretentious? Who, Moi?

And that may not be a good thing when it comes to defending and then promoting himself. Take the kinds of people promoting his talk with Del Boy, complete with attacking BAME actors by claiming “the minute they've got five million quid in the bank, every interview they do is about how racism is rampant and rife in the industry”. Subtle, isn’t he?
So who would like to promote that? Anyone on the left? Sadly, no. But Christopher “not an unreasonable man” Snowden of the IEA, who also writes for the increasingly alt-right Spectator, certainly would. “Lots of journalists have been listening to the [James Delingpole] podcast this week”. Doesn’t make it any good though, does it?
Anyone else? Oh dear, it’s the loathsome Toby Young. “My friend [James Delingpole] interviews [Laurence Fox]. Laurence’s dating advice - all women under 35 are bonkers, among other tips - make today’s Sunday Times”. And the humourless Laura Perrins, who let slip the timing of it all: “Great mention for [James Delingpole] podcast who spoke to Laurence Fox before the [Question Time] debate”. Most enlightening.
And why might Del Boy not be the best recommendation right now? Er, here’s his latest for Breitbart: “Whispery-voiced gorilla-hugging Malthusian launches BBC's climate bedwetting blitzkrieg”. Er, WHAT? “The BBC has completely lost the plot on climate change with its star enviro loon Sir David Attenborough leading the charge”. That’s why.
Still, onwards and, er, onwards, eh? Fox can now also boast a meeting with Ms Hartley Dooda. And so he did. “Here’s my full interview with [Julia Hartley Dooda]. Trigger warning. It contains small snippets of that most anti wokist of all approaches to conversation - common sense”. Who is this “wokist”? Who knows, and indeed, who cares?
But Ms Hartley Dooda was ready and willing to back him up. “‘People are tired of being called racist.’ The eminently sensible Laurence Fox talking about racism, Meghan, identity politics, the woke police & snowflakes, with me on my [TalkRADIO] show this morning”.
Worst Royston Vasey inhabitants EVER

How very comradely. And her looking all female version of Milk Tray Man. But seriously, that was much more upmarket than the sneering presence of Del Boy, wasn’t it? I mean, it’s not as if the right wing is so incestuous that they all feed off one another. Oh, hang on a minute, here’s Delingpole again: “So excited about this week’s special podcast guest”.

Who just happens to be Julia Hartley Dooda. You can put the lid on now.
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Lord Hall-Hall - DG No More

It is not exaggerating to say that the BBC is not in the happiest of places right now. Rightly or wrongly, the trust rating for its news and political coverage has fallen recently; there were more than a few raised eyebrows over the coverage of last month’s General Election; the Corporation’s coverage of the EU referendum and its aftermath has been criticised; and it has faced a series of embarrassing pay equality cases.
Add to that the implicit criticism from former Director General Mark Thompson yesterday on The Andy Marr Show™, for instance asking why BBC3 was axed as a TV channel, given its track record of nurturing shows that have become BBC1 ratings bankers. Add in the ruckus over free TV licences for over-75s, and the pressure on current incumbent Tony Hall was only going to increase. And so the inevitable has happened.

The Beeb has been first to admit this morningLord Hall to step down as BBC's director general”. It sounds so much more, well, decent than “quit” or “resign”, which he has done. Why go, and why now? “He said he felt it was important the BBC had the same leader for the BBC's mid-term review in 2022 and the renewal of its charter in 2027”.

To no surprise at all, BBC media editor Amol Rajan - the bloke who spiked the John Whittingdale dominatrix story when editor of the Independent - was fulsome in his praise for Lord Hall-Hall, breaking down The Great Man’s stewardship into three chapters.

That first chapter was a case of steadying the ship, and crisis management, where he is widely thought to have performed well … The third chapter has been navigating unprecedented technological disruption. On this, he has done much more than he is generally credited for”. The second chapter? That was “securing a new Royal Charter and governance structure at the BBC. This included a painful negotiation with the government which some critics argue the BBC should have been tougher in”. Understatement, much?

But no mention of the increasing disquiet over the news and current affairs coverage - including the descent of supposedly flagship politics show Question Time into an increasingly cheap ratings chasing spectacle where audience members and indeed panellists are routinely the subject of derision and subsequent media pile-on.
And while Rajan volunteers “His successor will need to combine world-class political, commercial, editorial and managerial talent, while coming under a relentless barrage of criticism from all fronts”, what the new DG really needs to do in that news and current affairs arena is simply to regain the T-Word - as in TRUST.

After that, yes, someone ready, as Thompson hinted on the Marr Show, to bang the gong for public service broadcasting when it comes to discussions with the Government. But first, the Corporation has to be seen to be actually doing what it says on the BBC tin: ENTERTAIN, EDUCATE AND INFORM. The last two have been patchy of late.

In other words, the Beeb does not need a rocket scientist. Just a damn good manager.
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Carole Cadwalladr Pwns Piers Morgan AGAIN

One might have thought that, having come off second best in a very public social media exchange with one of those mere women, former Screws and Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan might have thought better of repeating the experience. But that thought would have been sadly misplaced, after he once again took the bait dangled before him by the Observer’s Carole Cadwalladr. It did not end well for The Great Man.
Ms Cadwalladr had been reading an Observer piece from yesterday by former Guardian head man Alan Rusbridger, in which he considers the background to the Hal and Megs story which has consumed so many column inches of late. The strapline, “There’s a reason why the Royals are demonised. But you won’t read all about it”, gives a flavour of his argument. Ms C decided to comment, and tag Morgan in for good measure.
‘Former Mirror editor Piers Morgan, one of most vehement critics of [the] royal couple, does not find time or space to let his viewers know his name crops up [very] many times in the generic phone-hacking litigation particulars of claims’ So strange [Piers Morgan]!” Might something be adding an edge to Morgan’s opinions here?
It might be enough to get him to demand that she Look Over There: “Ahhhh, so now all criticism of Meghan is down to alleged historic phone-hacking from 20yrs before Harry even met her... of course! Have we moved on from racism?” Ah, but there are two participants in the Hal and Megs story, and one of them is taking legal action against papers including the Daily Mirror (when Morgan was editor). And well he knows it.
So Ms Cadwalladr was not taking any crap from him (as before). She decided to issue a little editorial guidance of her own: “Oops! You missed out a bit [Piers Morgan]. Let me help. ‘All criticism is down to alleged historic phone-hacking from when I was editor & which Mirror has not admitted but has paid millions of £ in settlements before Harry even met her.’” And Harry was one of those allegedly hacked (see above).
What say The Great Man to that? “Hi Carole, your newspaper [The Guardian] hacked phones”. And, as Jon Stewart might have said, two things here. One, whatever the Guardian or its staff may or may not have done does not excuse what happened at the Mirror. And Two, not only is the Guardian NOT Ms Cadwalladr’s paper (she writes for the Sunday sister title), the hacking was confined to one - publicly justified - episode.
That involved David Leigh, who admitted doing it to the Police. He was pursuing a corruption enquiry. Not someone chasing Sleb goss and tittle-tattle. In any caae, Ms C was unimpressed. “And this has what to do with me? Nothing. Whereas, hmm, weren’t you editor of the Mirror during the period that Prince Harry has issued legal proceedings claiming he was hacked? Isn’t that at least worth mentioning once in a while?
And just to make sure, she added a video from the Leveson Inquiry hearings with the comment “This has nothing to do with anything. And certainly nothing to do with Prince Harry taking legal proceedings against the Mirror for phone hacking during the period in which Piers Morgan was editor. But here’s Jeremy Paxman explaining how Morgan taught him how to hack a phone”. Morgan had by now sensibly beaten a retreat.

You can’t shout and bluster your way round Twitter. I’ll just leave that one there.
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