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Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Daily Mail Doxxes BLM Organisers

Some newspapers try to move with the time; others try hard not to. And in the latter category, always resisting any move that might take its worldview anywhere near the 21st Century, is the Daily Mail, along with its Sunday stablemate and website. The issues that keep the Mail anchored firmly in the past include an undercurrent of racism, and a judgmental and authoritarian streak. All this was on view today.
As the protests at gratuitous and racist Police brutality, which were sparked in the US city of Minneapolis after the murder of George Floyd, swept across the North Atlantic, it was inevitable that the Black Lives Matter movement and its offshoots would make their presence felt in the UK, and especially in London, where the Metropolitan Police has never completely shaken off the taint of institutional racism identified by the Macpherson inquiry.

The Guardian report mentions one young woman. “Aima, 18, who did not wish to give her last name, was one of the organisers of a protest in London on Sunday. She said: ‘I started the #LDNBLM hashtag and it blew off. I didn’t expect that to happen. What inspired me was how much pain I’ve suffered while in the UK. I moved here from Nigeria when I was 10 and as soon as I came here I experienced a lot of discrimination from the police and from people around me. People need to understand in the UK, we’re suffering too.’

The Murdoch Sun also name-checked her in their report, and mentioned a colleague. “Aima, 18, and Tash, 21, helped coordinate Sunday's protest in London as demonstrators holding placards made their way over the River Thames and past the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye … In an interview on the BBC World Service, she accused the Metropolitan Police of being ‘institutionally racist’”. The piece also mentions Twitter.
Big Brother of Northcliffe House: always watching, always doxxing

But it goes no further. That isn’t enough for the Mail, of course. The inmates of the Northcliffe House bunker want to make sure you know that they know who you are, and if they can possibly find out, where you live. They wanted to make sure their mainly white and easily riled up audience had faces to put to names. They would doxx Aima and Tash.

So it was that Mail Online (no link provided, for obvious reasons) howled “'The police will kill me before corona kills me': Two young women organisers of the London Black Lives Matter protest make incredible claim that they 'risk their lives on a daily basis' living in 'so racist' UK”. And then comes the doxxing - by posting photos of them.

Two 18-year-olds Aima (left) and Tash (right) have been revealed as organising the London protests over the killing of George Floyd which sparked violence on the capital's streets. They've posted a series of hard hitting social media messages slamming Britain for being a 'racist country' and claiming that 'police brutality' will kill black people before coronavirus does”. Way to endanger them both for a few clicks.

It gets worse: both their Twitter feeds are identified. Then the Mail has the brass neck to add “Tash, a student from London, told MailOnline that neither her nor Aima are willing to divulge any personal details about themselves”. So the Mail did it for them.

The only surprise is that the Mail didn’t also post a photo of where they lived. After all, they’ve done that to so many of their targets in the past. Totally out of order.
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Times Radio - Diversity Inaction

Those with long memories may recall that, in the aftermath of the Stephen Lawrence murder, the Daily Mail had a black reporter. Diversity had even then begun to enhance the ranks of our free and fearless press. Papers began, slowly but surely, to more resemble the real world. But the media establishment’s view of that world is always going to be that little bit different to reality. Cos they’re media people. And they’re special.
That memory came to the fore this morning after the line-up for the Murdoch mafiosi’s latest broadcast venture was announced. Times Radio will commence broadcasting at the end of this month, and its first line-up has now been announced, including what looks like a makeshift breakfast show roster. Perhaps the inmates of the Baby Shard bunker are still chasing one more big name hire as they wave their wallets around.
Jim Waterson at the Guardian told “Times Radio, the new Murdoch-backed ad-free talk station that may or may not be a rival to Radio 4, has a confirmed launch date of 29 June. Here’s the full schedule”. So who’s on offer? Stig Abell? Gloria de Piero? Occasional visits by the non-bullying Tom Newton Dunn? Giles Coren? The kinds of names that media folk think excite the target audience. But those media folk may be disappointed.
Perhaps the official Times Radio Twitter feed will provide more of a stimulus to tune in. “Times Radio will launch at 6am on Monday 29 June and our presenters include Mariella Frostrup, Giles Coren and Hugo Rifkind. Amber Rudd and her daughter Flora will also present specially commissioned shows”. Amber Rudd and her daughter Flora Gill? Ah, but in these straitened times, there is still room for a little media nepotism.
Tara Jane O’Reilly took a sceptical view of the new line-up. “You do not get more diverse exciting journalism than a former home secretary and her daughter presenting a show now do ya? Clap clap”. And addressing the former Home Secretary more specifically, “Maybe we can start with your Windrush deportations ey Amber”. OUCH!
She was not the only one mentioning the D-Word, as in Diversity. Kevin Garside took one look at the promotional photo mash-up and mused “good people, fine gender balance, diversity free zone. #BlackLivesMatter”. Was it that bad a line-up?
Surely not, I mean, there’s … oh hang on, that’s Gloria de Piero with a tan. But there is alleged Labour supporting Ayesha Hazarika. And that, in the line-up that has been put out there, is that. Were one to be less than totally kind to the Murdoch goons, one might dismiss Ms Hazarika’s presence as tokenism - as well as knowing that she had been a constant critic of the party of late. It’s not as if there are few BAME journalists out there.
And that’s the problem with the Murdoch empire: mainly white, with occasional tokenism (think Juan Williams at Fox News Channel). A line up by the media establishment, of the media establishment, for the media establishment. And not for We The People.

Then when it goes nowhere, it will be someone else’s fault. No change there, then.
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Brillo Boosts The Far Right

Still allowed to sit atop the tree at the increasingly alt-right Spectator magazine, which routinely publishes all manner of racism, including an obsessive amount of Islamophobia and even the outpourings of a self-confessed Nazi-admiring anti-Semite, while remaining a presenter and interviewer for the BBC, Andrew Neil has been giving those permitted to follow him the benefits of his worldly wisdom on matters Stateside.
He has two reasons for pontificating thus: a longstanding interest in the politics of the USA, and the presence there of a Spectator offshoot, Spectator USA. Along with these is the recent focus on Police brutality there, after George Floyd, an unarmed African American, was brutally murdered by a white (now ex) Police officer by asphyxiation for the not particularly heinous crime of being suspected of passing a fake $20 bill.
Brillo knew all about the USA. He knew all about its history, its politics, its racial divide. His knowledge was so great, in fact, that on seeing video of a protest against George Floyd’s killing outside Colorado’s Capitol, that he was able to swagger “That’s how to protest. But Colorado has always been my favourite state in the Union. Respect”.

But then it all went downhill. First, after Nadine Batchelor-Hunt responded to his Colorado riff with “as a white guy you shouldn’t be telling black people what is the right or wrong way to protest their oppression” (seconded), he came over all snippy.
Looks like most of the folks protesting are white. I’m not telling anybody what they should do; just approving of a particular form of protest. Why make an issue of my colour. I don’t take kindly to what people tell me I should or should not do”. There’s privilege for you.

Then he lost it completely by RTing the Spectator USA, which had told potential readers “‘We are witnessing glimmers of the full insurrection the far-left has been working toward for decades. The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis was merely a pre-text for radicals to push their ambitious insurgency,’ writes [Andy Ngo]”. Oh dear.
The Speccy USA will no doubt protest in its defence that platforming Andy Ngo is nothing more than FREEZE PEACH. It is nothing of the sort. Ngo is a provocateur, a holder of a particular worldview which he then seeks to confirm by whatever means necessary, so long as that does not include such trivialities as fact checking.
Ngo wrote the now infamous “A Visit to Islamic England” for the Murdoch Wall Street Journal. The article was so loaded with misinformation that it was laughed out of court. His podcast has included interviews with the likes of Carl Benjamin. He has made a series of claims about anti-fascist groups while under the protection of the far right.
Andy Ngo

For the Spectator USA to publish Ngo is shameful enough, but for Andrew Neil to then effectively award their editorial choice his imprimatur is by degrees worse. One might wonder if BBC News and Current Affairs would take a dim view of being linked with the likes of Andy Ngo, even at a distance, yet they seem impervious to criticism.

But all the time he does this, Andrew Neil’s reputation is diminished. And so, sadly, is the Beeb’s. Most people have retired by the time they pass their 70th birthday. Just a thought.
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Monday, 1 June 2020

Spain Tells Brits - YOU’RE BARRED

We are constantly being told by that part of our free and fearless press which supports alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson that life will soon return to normal, that we will once again be able to enjoy the lifestyle on offer before the Coronavirus pandemic struck. And that, we are assured, will include holidays. Which for many Brits means going to countries like, well, Spain. Or maybe Greece.
Montjuic and the harbour, Barcelona

Sadly, the Greeks, who locked down early and very firmly indeed, saw us thinking about coming and declined: of the 29 countries whose nationals they were prepared to admit, none of them was the UK. And now it has got worse: the Spanish have followed suit. Which means the Gammonati forgetting about Magaluf, El Arenal, Benidorm, Torrevieja, Salou, Torremolinos, Fuengirola, and of course Playa de las Americas.

As Yahoo! Finance has reported, “Spain will refuse entry to British holidaymakers until the UK’s coronavirus situation improves, the country’s tourism minister has said. Maria Reyes Maroto said despite reports of a possible trial reopening which could see thousands of tourists from several nations pour into Spain, Britons would have to wait to be allowed to take holidays there”. Or, put in more understandable terms, YER BARRED.

There was more. “The tourism minister revealed that Germany and the Nordic countries were most likely to be first because their ‘epidemiological situations are very good’. But when asked about the UK, she reportedly said: ‘There the health situation still has to improve … For us it is important to guarantee that people arrive healthy and leave healthy’”. Moreover, “At the moment the Foreign and Commonwealth Office advises against all but essential travel abroad”. And holidays abroad are not essential.
Kos Town, Greece

Worse for those Brits looking for sun, sea, San Miguel and plenty of puke-inducing junk food, the Murdoch Sun has carried the same news. “Spain said Brit tourists will have longer until the situation here improves … Spain’s tourism Minister has opened up the possibility of foreign tourists being allowed [to visit the] Balearics and Canary Islands in two weeks time - but confirmed they won’t be British”. But hold on, what’s this?

GREECE has said it will now allow Brit tourists, despite having previously banned visitors from the UK. The holiday hotspot is opening up to tourists again on June 15” Greece is back on? Wha-hey! Mucho Mythos-fuelled mayhem! Hersonnisos, Malia, Kavos, Faliraki, Kardamena, get booking! But here a problem enters. Called quarantine.

Greek authorities have said they will conduct coronavirus tests on visitors arriving from airports deemed high-risk by the European Union's aviation safety agency EASA when it opens its airports … ‘If you originate from an airport on the EASA affected area list, then you will be tested upon arrival,’ said the ministry of foreign affairs … ‘If the test is negative, then the passenger self-quarantines for 7 days. If the test is positive, the passenger is quarantined under supervision for 14 days”. And there’s your holiday gone.

Because the UK has handled the pandemic in a less than optimal manner - some may be less charitably inclined, and just call it a shambles - our holidaymakers are going nowhere for the next two or three months. And if the Government doesn’t shape up, maybe longer.

By which time Sterling will have fallen further and you’ll need a visa. Taking back control!
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Who’s Behind The Core?

After yet another pile-on from the far right and ardent Brexiteers, over the claim that someone admitting they made up a sighting of chief Downing Street polecat Dominic Cummings in Durham invalidated her copy, Pippa Crerar of the Mirror told her followers “Sigh. Once again, this guy was *not* one of our sources. We’ve done our journalistic due diligence”. The pile-on came courtesy of a Twitter account called The Core.
This feed had cobbled together Ms Crerar’s original Tweet on an alleged second visit to the town by Cummings with yesterday’s Mail on Sunday claim, added the comment “More high quality reporting from our media”, and left its 47,000 or so followers to do the rest. But does it matter who is behind it? Well, yes it does, as it’s spreading malicious falsehood. A lot of it.
The account displays the Government’s own Covid-19 advice, and smears anyone and everyone who dares to criticise alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, usually by maliciously lying about them (while often calling its targets liars).
Here’s a few samples. “WARNING … Emily Maitlis, BBC, Sky News, Guardian, Mirror, FT writers. NATIONAL UNION OF JOURNALISTS CODE OF CONDUCT … Given your recent quality of work please accept this friendly warning ref clauses below: 1. [?] 2. serious breach 3. serious breach 4. serious breach”. Circular argument, as it assumes guilt, and this is merely a taster. Then comes the Cummings Barnard Castle story.
A story carried by every TV station and newspaper. BASED ON A TOTAL FABRICATION BY A SINGLE LUNATIC ANTI-GOVERNMENT BREXIT HATER … A pure invention, a lie, presented to the nation as FACT by much of the media. 70% of us don't trust the media, that number just went up … Thanks to the MoS, we now know that the Cummings snitch, 70yr old teacher Robin Lees, himself made a lockdown car trip, of about the same distance, but with far less reason - to collect daughter from another household. Standard low-morality, lefty hypocrisy - ugly on the inside”. Lees did not break any rules.
But there’s more. “THE MEDIA MOUNTED A WHOLE ANTI-GOVERNMENT, ‘DOMINiC CUMMINGS WITCH HUNT’ BASED ON WITNESSES WHO LIED AND CHEATED … Draw your own conclusions #mediascum”. It likes that hashtag. And, for anyone not yet up to speed, the “media” despised by The Core is any media not grovelling to Bozo.
Here’s another flat-out lie. “BLM protesters chanting ‘F**k The Police’ under the ANTIFA flag outside Downing Street today. Heads Up chaps: ANTIFA has today been declared a terrorist organisation in the USA, UK soon”. Antifa has experienced no such sanction.
Next, encouraging more pile-ons: “Maitlis is back on NewsNight tonight” is followed by an attack on ITV Good Morning Britain. “Haw Haw's back. The sun just went in as Beelzebub cast his dark shadow of doom and gloom, blame and bile across the nation. GMB - ‘Great Morning Bringdown’”. And then a particularly malicious lie about Ian Blackford.
Many believe that Blackford took Covid19 to Sky with him. Many also believe that Sturgeon was, in part, responsible for the original outbreak in Scotland, the NIKE scandal. You won't hear this on the BBC”. Bullshit. Blackford is the MP for Ross, Skye and Lochaber. Claiming he broke lockdown is more malicious lying. And “Many” means “I just made that up”.
Then a attack on Greta Thunberg, supported by, you guessed it, more lying. “ANTIFA IS NOW A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION IN THE USA 1. Daddy Terrorist 2. Mummy Terrorist 3. Greta Terrorist”. Antifa is still not a terrorist organisation in the USA. Do go on.
And just to wrap up this selection of falsehood and shameless misinformation, here’s The Core taking a claim from Westmonster that London Mayor Sadiq Khan is urging an extension to the transition period (no evidence is provided - no surprise there) and adding “Sadiq Khan betrays Britain on Brexit”. Always the simple statement, and usually untrue.
Repeating direct falsehoods, encouraging pile-ons: The Core came to Twitter in June 2017, at the time Theresa May nearly dropped the ball for the Tories. Now it’s making noises like parts of the US alt-right. So who’s behind it?

Investigations continue. As, no doubt, will The Core’s tenuous grip on reality.
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Boris Makes Shagging Illegal

And so the lockdown is eased a little - which had already effectively happened, given the continuing dry and warm weather, the response to chief Downing Street polecat Dominic Cummings getting away with busting the rules anyway, and the realisation that the Police do not possess sufficient resources to stop lockdown busting if enough folks do it.
Hold your horses, Bozo ...

Still, among all the controversy over the continuing high level of Covid-19 infections, the standing joke that is England’s “world class” track and trace system, and a return to school for all except those at minor hold-outs like Eton, there is, for legal eagles, a new series of regulations to pore over, and lawyers like Adam Wagner have been sifting the detail.
... you just outlawed seeing her

It was not long before he happened upon an interesting nugget. “Third big change - now illegal for there to be a gathering of 2 or more people in private places, which includes your own home, unless it falls within one of the (it seems exhaustive) list of reasonable excuses - can be people from same household (obviously) - for work etc”. How this was going to be policed was another matter, but there it was. But then there was another revelation.
Ronnie MacLennan Baird, who appears to be based in the Falkland Islands, and so has no axe to grind in the matter, pursued the new law and concluded “Which, read with the definition in para 4, means that sex between two people not already living together is being made illegal: sex in a public place was already against the law ;-)”. Oh, hello?
What does the definition say? First, the new Regulation 7. “During the emergency period … no person may participate in a gathering which takes place in a public or private place … indoors, and consists of more than two persons”. But then comes Paragraph 3.
This is quite explicit. “For the purposes of this regulation … there is a gathering when two or more people are present together in the same place in order to engage in any form of social interaction with each other, or to undertake any other activity with each other”.
What say Adam Wagner? "Afraid to say this is correct. I can't believe I'm about to tweet this. From tomorrow sex between two (or more) people in a private place who do not live in the same household is a 'gathering' between 2 or more people and is therefore illegal … Unless - to avoid harm - for work purposes (I know) - to private [provide?] care or assistance to a vulnerable person - to provide emergency assistance”. Yes, well.
He also notes “And the strange things about these regulations is the list of reasonable excuses has become exhaustive, which means unless it's on the list it can't be a reasonable excuse”. So there you have it: even if secreted away in a private house, if two people having sex do not live in the same household, that sex is now illegal.
And as alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson is not on the list of reasonable excuses, then the extra-curricular shagging ban applies to him too.

How long before the first test case comes to court? Be upstanding, and all that.
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Sunday, 31 May 2020

Polecat Barnard Castle Fib UNRAVELS

For around ten days, chief Downing Street polecat Dominic Cummings has failed to shape the story, because the story has been about him, and is out of his hands. This result, which demonstrates what happens when a weak leader dependent on the likes of Polecat Dom fails to take action against him, means that an attempt by today’s Mail on Sunday to rubbish one eyewitness’ testimony has had no effect; it has failed to dampen the flames.
Worse, Cummings’ claim regarding his lockdown-busting jolly to Barnard Castle is now under scrutiny. Remember, he had asserted “We walked about 10 to 15 metres from the car to the river bank nearby. We sat there for about 15 minutes. We had no interactions with anybody. I felt better. We returned to the car” at his presser last week.
And there has already been pushback from the likes of local resident Lisa Westcott Wilkins: “I live in Barnard Castle. He was here. The whole town knows it. He parked on our street and was seen at leisure right where we walk our dogs. Infected, he touched the gates we all have to touch to move through that area. People have died here from the virus”. So there’s already doubt over the “10 to 15 metres from the river bank” claim.
Now, the Sunday Times has done its own digging. Jim Pickard of the FT has read the story and concluded “New witnesses in Barnard Castle contradict the Cummings account”. And indeed they do: apart from Robin Lees, who has been aggressively doorstepped by the Mail on Sunday in an effort to discredit his account, there are two other witnesses.
Rosalind Evans … says she spotted Cummings in Market Place - a partially cobbled street of shops and Barnard Castle’s main thoroughfare. She claims he was with ‘a group of people’” … "Alan Gowland … claims to have walked past Cummings on a narrow path that runs alongside the Tees, known as Scar Top walkway, in the early afternoon”. Lees claims to have seen him on The Sills, which runs parallel to the Tees.
Adding the annual event which Cummings’ wife would have been celebrating in her own way that day, Geoff Wilton observed sceptically “Man accidentally drives to beauty spot on wife’s birthday to test eyesight, and accidentally then strolls round said beauty spot further testing eyesight. It’s entirely plausible”. The Polecat has lost all credibility.
But he is gaining notoriety, and as a result, more people are becoming emboldened to put their claims of sightings and further lockdown breaches out there on social media platforms, one of these being Facebook, where one North London resident has told “It is apparently well known among certain people that he had people over during lockdown, and even more importantly that a lady (who some people think is either his mother or mother-in-law) was with him and travelled in the car up to Durham”. There is more.
This absolutely negates all his defence re childcare. Why has this not been covered by the media?” Well, maybe it will be now: while the likes of the MoS deploy their resources to aggressively intimidating witnesses, yet more media outlets will now be following up leads. And so the Flight of the Polecat remains where Cummings and his boss, alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, don’t want it: high up the news agenda.

For such a master media manipulator, Cummings is really pretty crap. Sad, really.
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