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Wednesday 31 March 2021

No Racism, Says Bozo’s Gaslighter

The latest report from a review set up by 10 Downing Street has put some of our free and fearless press into a rapturous mood, typified by the Daily Mail proclaiming “BRITAIN’S RACE REVOLUTION … Landmark report says UK ‘a model to world’ on diversity - and finds NO evidence of institutional racism”. Now what does that remind me of?

Ah yes, a scene from the Goon Show classic Six Charlies In Search Of An Author, in which Neddie Seagoon calls on Major Bloodnok. The retired Indian Army Major is surprised. “It's a lie! Ohh! Naughty postcards, I've never heard of them I tell you! How dare you come in here and offer me money for those postcards over there which are not here!

Munira Mirza

Yes, that level of ridiculous. But with the Times and Telegraph also featuring the story, and the BBC telling “The UK ‘no longer’ has a system rigged against people from ethnic minorities”, plus the Mail revelling in the knowledge that it isn’t institutionally racist, some are now beginning to stop and think as to whether this report is actually credible.

Sathnam Sanghera did just that. “Everyone involved in this report, from Munira Mirza (head of policy unit), to Tony Sewell, to Boris Johnson himself, has been critical of concept of institutional racism and argued racism is culture of ‘victimhood’. And guess what it concludes”. Adam Bienkov of Business Insider also noted Ms Mirza’s presence.

Boris Johnson's inquiry into racial inequality in the UK was set up by his policy director Munira Mirza. Here's some of her earlier work” he observed, the headlines coming from the planet Spiked and including “Diversity is divisive”, “Stop pandering to Muslims”, and “Lammy Review: the myth of institutional racism”. And speaking of David Lammy, well.

The Labour MP has been hosting for LBC recently, and has had to field calls including one individual who told him that he could not be considered to be English because he was not white. Also, we have had the dog whistle taken out by the likes of Sarah “Vain” Vine when attacking the Duchess of Sussex, telling of herNIGGling worry”. No bad words, you understand, just a NIGGling worry. Nothing to do with racism, just a NIGGle.

And speaking of Muslims, which one of those Spiked headlines was, brings us to Murdoch noise floor occupant TalkRADIO, where dribbling bigot Mike Graham proclaimed earlier today “The fact that Britain is now officially not a racist country seems to have upset quite a lot of activists and #racism professionals. You know who you are”.

That’s an interesting coincidence: the Centre for Media Monitoring has investigated a call to TalkRADIO, later repeated by the Express and Daily Star titles, that a gay paramedic “was refused entry to a mosque to treat a heart attack patient”. There were claims of no-go areas. North West Ambulance has confirmed that no such incident was recorded.

Small wonder that Priyamvada Gopal, who you can tell as she’s a doctor, mused “Dictionary of British Gaslighting 2021 … Beacon of Racial Equality … Working Royals … Compassionate Conservatism … Proportionate Policing”, and James Foster concluded “If you don’t think institutional racism exists in this country then I’ve got some magic beans to sell you”. This report is not being taken seriously. Because it is not credible.

We’ll be told next that the PM isn’t racist either. Because a Government report will say so.

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BBC And The Erasing Of Jennifer Arcuri

In the past, the BBC was the gold standard of reportage, producing the highest quality journalism and speaking truth to power, but it was also vulnerable to political interference. The Tories did it when Mrs T had Duke Hussey installed as the Corporation’s chairman: Hussey then forced DG Alasdair Milne out. Later, blowback from the Blair Government led to the departure of Greg Dyke. Now has come the cowardly new DG Tim Davie.

In the news. But not in the BBC News

The arrival of Davie, a former Tory candidate and former deputy chairman of Hammersmith and Fulham Tories, has coincided - perhaps not accidentally - with a series of actions that give the appearance of excusing the indiscretions of alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, while at the same time wiping Bozo’s arse for him.

This selective approach to reporting, with its ominous hint of potential partisanship, has become so obvious with the new revelations concerning Bozo’s four-year shagfest with Jennifer Arcuri - the latter benefiting to the tune of £126,000 along with several foreign jollies in return - that alarm bells are now ringing long and loud.

Tim Davie

After the Mirror titles had splashed the story across their front pages last Sunday, there was an almost discreet mention during the paper review on The Andy Marr Show™, although Marr kept the Sunday Mirror front page covered up. But that was all: there appears to be no new mention of Ms Arcuri on the BBC website.

Nor has there been a peep from the Corporation’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg, who has, in the past, not always distinguished herself when it comes to apparent lack of impartiality. But she has been willing to excuse the Supreme Leader, recently excusing the Beeb’s own headline “'Greed' and 'capitalism' helped UK's vaccines success, says PM” with “One MP told me the prime minister's "greed" comments had been intended to poke fun at the chief whip … Sources are adamant that Mr Johnson was not intending to be critical of the pharmaceutical companies in any way”. It wasn’t an isolated occurrence.

After Bozo appeared to back pub “vaccination passports”, there was his little helper once more: “Important on pub passports - PM's suggested this morning that idea might only apply once everyone has been offered a vaccine”. But on Jennifer Arcuri, she has not managed one Twitter peep since May last year. So what’s the deal?

Hardeep Matharu of Byline Times decided to ask the obvious question. The official BBC spokesperson sniffily replied “The story of Jennifer Arcuri’s personal relationship with Boris Johnson has been an ongoing issue for many months, with updates being provided over a long period of time”. But no update when she admits they had a physical relationship.

There was more. "Stories are chosen due to their editorial merit, and the BBC has covered the issue substantially when there have been newsworthy updates, for example when the Greater London Assembly said it would resume its investigation into the Prime Minister last year and when it was announced that he would not face a criminal investigation … We will continue to provide updates to this story when necessary”. It’s necessary right now.

Instead, there is silence. The impression is given that, following Davie’s arrival, the BBC has not merely moved to appease the Johnson gang, but to provide cover for it. Which would make it no better than the Tory-supporting press. And that’s not good enough.

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Tuesday 30 March 2021

Bozo And Arcuri - Integrity My Arse

Courtesy of Allegra Stratton, Downing Street’s very own Ri Chun-Hee, we now have another classic non-excuse to rank alongside “A big boy did it and ran away”, “I could be arguing in my spare time”, and “Holds his wand while he’s thinking” (ask an older relative about the last one). This is the claim that alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson “acts with integrity and honesty”. Of course he does, Ms S.

Allegra Stratton

This jaw-droppingly fraudulent claim came following the inevitable questioning on Bozo’s four-year affair with Jennifer Arcuri, whose story has appeared in the Mirror titles (the thought has occurred that she wouldn’t have persuaded the Sun or Mail, who would have paid more, to dish the dirt, as they are so heavily invested in The Adoration Of The Boris).

New Downing Street spokesperson Shock Horror

There was, Ms Arcuri confirmed, a physical relationship between her and Bozo. They screwed at her place just before the Olympics opening ceremony. They screwed at the Bozo family home, on the sofa. No doubt in the next few days we will discover other Bozo and Jen screwing locations. In addition, there was rather a lot of public money.

And this is where it becomes potentially difficult for The Great Leader. Ms Arcuri not only scored a number of foreign jollies during her intimate friendship with Bozo, she also scored well over £100k in grants. Thus the difficult questions. And the lame excuses in reply.

As Pippa Crerar of the Mirror, who knows Bozo of old, noted, “PM press sec Allegra Stratton says of Boris Johnson: "He does believe in the wider principles of integrity and honesty … He acts with integrity and honesty and he follows the Nolan principles when conducting himself in public life’”. The Nolan principles, it is true, do not specifically preclude having a quickie on the family sofa, or a pre-Olympics pole dance.

But Ms Crerar’s colleague Dan Bloom had heard enough. “Boris Johnson's Press Sec Allegra Stratton has insisted he followed ‘all legal requirements’ in his alleged affair with Jennifer Arcuri - so that's all right then! She (wrongly, AFAIK) said the IOPC report found claims of impropriety against him were ‘untrue and unfounded’”. Do go on.

No10's Allegra Stratton claimed *nine times* today that the IOPC ruled allegations of impropriety against Boris Johnson were ‘untrue and unfounded’. That's before she was told those words don't actually appear in the IOPC report - they were used by a No10 spokesperson”. So Ms Stratton has said something that is not true. Several times.

As the Mirror has wasted no time in telling its readers, the ridicule has been raining down on her as a result. On ITV Good Morning Britain, they noted that co-host Ben Shephard, “Joined by co-star Susanna Reid, the Mirror's Kevin Maguire and the Mail's Andrew Pierce, … scoffed at the response from Downing Street”. There was more.

[Ms Reid] read out the statement from Johnson's spokesperson, saying: ‘Yesterday his spokesman said that he acted with honesty and integrity. Umm …’ As the panel tried to stifle their laughter, Ben jumped in and said: ‘We're just laughing - it's ridiculous! We're all just laughing at the idea’”. That is why the Times, Sun, i Paper, Mail and Express are splashing feel-good end-of-lockdown propaganda over their front pages.

Bozo couldn’t tell integrity from a hole in the ground. Will he get away with it once again?

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Monday 29 March 2021

Piers Morgan Silence Breaking ISN’T

So the non-happening happened with the publication of yesterday’s Mail on Sunday: former Screws and Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan broke his silence. The non-happening was that he had no silence to break: Morgan would not know silence if it materialised before him and kicked him in the undercarriage. But he does understand one thing very well: the continued and shameless promotion of Himself Personally Now.

And what's more, Ron

The MoS headline tells us “our columnist defends free speech”. He has free speech, and no-one has stopped him exercising it. What he does not have is freedom from consequences. And he “says the silent majority hate the tyranny of woke”. Being knowledgeable and alert to injustices in society, and especially racism, is now a tyranny.

But on to the lamentably thin copy, where Morgan is, as ever, whining at the Duchess of Sussex. He finds it implausible “Meghan's insistence she never checked out Harry”. But that wasn’t what she was talking about. The subject was being part of the Royal Family. Then, soon enough, we arrive at the reason Morgan left ITV. Mental health claims.

Morgan admits to saying “'OK,' I said, 'let's have the names. Who did you go to, what did they say to you?' Then I made a more general observation: 'I'm sorry, I don't believe a word she says’”. Ri-i-i-ight. Let’s take this nice and slowly. If you dismiss someone’s claim that they have felt suicidal, that leaves only one way for them to disprove you.

Morgan seems not to have got that one. How convenient for him. So then out comes the king-sized onion. “The clearly orchestrated social media pile-on [no citation] against me intensified through the afternoon”. Poor dear. And how many million Twitter followers has Sir got? And the MoS column. And the Mail Online columns. Then comes deflection.

But my three sons told me they too are all being targeted”. Which is someone else’s fault. This works both ways: his targets’ families most likely get it, too. No matter, on to the Good Morning Britain edition that was his last. “Alex Beresford … launched into a very personal attack”. The one on Meg wasn’t personal at all, you understand. But there was more.

I don't mind outside guests trying to make a name for themselves by whacking me like this, but I wasn't going to sit there and take it from one of my own team, especially someone who I've gone out of my way to help whenever he's asked me for advice about his career”. WAAAH! WAAAH! I helped him and this is how he repaid me! WAAAH!

Why did he go? "As requested by ITV, I clarified my position on mental health by saying: 'I still don't believe what Meghan Markle says generally in this interview, and I have serious concerns about the veracity of a lot of what she said”. So he kept on saying he didn’t believe what she had said about suicidal feelings. He just dug himself in deeper.

And he sounded less than totally sincere about his co-host. “I suspect Susanna's feeling angry and sad at me leaving just when the show's soared to new audience heights, concerned for her own future, fearful of troll abuse for publicly backing me”. Er, hello Piers, did you miss all the knocking copy the Mail put out about her before you joined GMB?

In any case, they’ll miss him now he’s gone. “Meanwhile, ITV's share price has plunged by five per cent since news of my departure from GMB broke, valuing me at £250 million, which is £52 million more than the world's most expensive footballer, Neymar. That should come in handy in my future contract negotiations!” The share price has since recovered, and more. Then came the dropping of more names. Because he’s still famous.

Susanna rang for a long clear-the-air chat. She apologised for the tone of her chilly goodbye, which was for all the reasons I suspected, and I apologised for leaving her in the lurch so suddenly”. Gave you permission to splash the contents of the conversation all over the papers, did she? Confidentiality, the Piers Morgan way.

Still, on with the drivel: “Sharon Osbourne is paying a heavy price in America for supporting me … Sharon Osbourne's quit The Talk, driven out for the crime of defending me”. Bullshit. Ms Osbourne has a long history of treating co-workers badly. That is all.

Any more jaw-dropping idiocy? Here we go: “Teen Vogue's new editor has been cancelled before she even started over offensive tweets she posted as a teenager … Do we really want to live in a world where anyone can have their careers destroyed for some dumb thing they said as a teenage kid?” Hello Piers. You wrote that in the Mail on Sunday. Try searching for what YOUR PAPER did to Paris Brown. For her teenage Tweets.

Meanwhile, Morgan concludes [eventually] by grandly telling “As Winston Churchill said: 'Some people's idea of it [free speech] is that they are free to say what they like but if anyone else says anything back, that is an outrage’”. Like when Alex Beresford said something back to you, eh? At least he admits “To be clear: I'm not a victim and I haven't been cancelled”. So why all the self-justifying bullshit?

If that had been Meg making those claims, she’d have been called a liar. And probably by the likes of Piers Morgan. But instead, he’s a poor victim. Pass the sick bucket.

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Brillo Kills His Own Credibility

If former Murdoch editor Andrew Neil had retired the day he departed the BBC at the end of last year - after covering the United States Presidential Election - he would have left the stage with reputation more or less intact, the goodwill of many across the media spectrum, and most importantly, his credibility as a serious broadcaster undimmed.

But the temptation of one more big payday was always going to come around, and so it came to pass that Brillo was lined up as the public face of new broadcast entrant GB News, where he will host a regular show. Tens of millions has been stumped up by the venture’s backers. And after yesterday’s events, they may be more than a little worried.

After MP Claudia Webbe observed “Bristol … Police brutality is the boot of capitalist state established to keep us all in order”, Brillo sniped “A Labour MP writes”. But Ms Webbe is currently suspended from the party, so she isn’t. Tanya Bueltmann of Strathclyde University fired back “She’s not a Labour MP. But who cares about facts, right?”.

This was correct. But The Great Man could not be found wanting, and certainly not by a mere woman, so off he went. “Well, she was elected as a Labour MP and her website still bills her as a Labour MP, as do other digital signatures. You’d expect a professor like yourself, even if it’s only at Strathclyde Uni, to have a greater reverence for facts. But that’s modern academia for you”. Brillo was once a Murdoch editor, but hey ho.

Worse was the sneering aside about Strathclyde Uni. Matthew Thompson of LBC reminded Brillo “Sure what would Strathclyde professors know about politics?” He included a photo of Prof John Curtice, the polling expert used by the BBC, and frequently interviewed by Brillo back in the day, who is from, er, the University of Strathclyde.

It got worse, as the Larry The Cat Twitter feed reminded us “CAT CHECK: Claudia Webbe is an Independent MP, having had the Labour whip removed. Andrew Neil is wrong to suggest otherwise, but that’s modern right wing journalists for you”. OUCH! Jolyon Maugham added “That's the man Andrew Neil has become. No longer a man who fearlessly seeks the truth. But a man who chooses to say things he knows to be false”.

Paul Bernal asked the obvious question. “The thing is, Andrew Neil wouldn’t have looked anywhere near the idiot he does if he had just said ‘ah yes, you’re right, she isn’t a Labour MP any more’. Is he fundamentally incapable of admitting a mistake?” And as for that Strathclyde Uni snark, Simon Ubsdell had bad news for the GB News frontman.

The University of Strathclyde was named University of the Year 2012 by Times Higher Education and again in 2019, becoming the first university to receive this award twice. But then I'm sure Andrew Neil knows that”. And LBC host James O’Brien was on hand to ask “Seriously, though, what's the point of setting up your own TV channel if you don't personally get to decide who is and who isn't a Labour MP?

Some have suggested that this will keep Brillo’s profile the in the public eye and help GB News’ visibility. But what is equally likely is that the new outlet’s credibility will be damaged as a result, with investors and potential advertisers becoming nervous.

A few more like that after launch day, and GB News will be finished. Then he can retire.

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Sunday 28 March 2021

Camilla Tominey - Shove Your Truth

Those observing the press pack in full pursuit of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex may have thought that, after the likes of Piers Morgan, Sarah Vine, Amanda Platell and their peers, no-one else could better those pundits’ ability to marry the outpouring of bile, selective recall, and bare-faced hypocrisy. But that thought would have been misplaced: today, Camilla Tominey has marched right in and declared “hold my beer”.

This is my article here, and as you can see, it's total shite

Writing in the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph, for which she has been made an “associate editor”, Ms Tominey, an over-promoted propagandist, has brought readers “Harry, Meghan and me: my truth as a Royal reporter”. This is secreted behind a paywall, but the Tel has Tweeted out enough tasters for us to get Ms Tominey’s drift.

Camilla who?

There are photos showing a “serious” journalist: working her mobile in one hand while clutching a bundle of newspapers with the other, quizzing Haz, appearing on ITV This Morning, and the obligatory quotes from The Great Woman Herself. Like “I've covered elections and extremism, but nothing compares to the vitriol I've received since I started writing about the Sussexes”. And then comes the biscuit taking pièce de résistance.

Listen up people, I'm a victim!

As I told Phillip Schofield on This Morning, ‘I don’t write things I don’t believe to be true and that haven’t been really well sourced’”. And to that I call bullshit: one article, with Ms Tominey’s the only name on the by-line, not merely disproves that claim, but shows exactly why she is fully deserving of any amount of “vitriol” coming her way.

Meg had worked with people affected by the Grenfell Tower fire to produce a “community cookbook”, which became a New York Times best seller, at the Hubb Community Kitchen. Along came Ms Tominey with “Meghan cookbook mosque linked to 19 terror suspects including 'Jihadi John' in group's investigation”. Many other papers lifted the copy.

Look - a real serious journalist!

Indeed, it secured a dishonourable mention in the court papers filed on behalf of Meg against Associated Newspapers, which publishes the Mail titles. These asserted that the link between the Hubb Community Kitchen “and the al-Manaar Muslim Cultural Heritage Centre (supposedly ‘linked to 19 Islamic extremists’) is at best a highly tenuous and deliberately inflammatory one”. The Duchess’ lawyers weren’t finished.

Said with a straight face, no doubt

The characterisation of these victims as being linked to terrorism in the same way as the [Duchess] is said to be supporting or endorsing jihadi terrorists through her participation in a cookbook for victims of Grenfell, is as false as it is offensive”. Worse still, Ms Tominey’s article appears to have been based on a single source: the Henry Jackson Society.

You read that right: the HJS, formerly a bipartisan organisation, but recently taken over by the hard right. Which any self-respecting journalist should avoid like a malignant Covid-19 variant. Used, it seems, as the sole source for a mean-spirited slice of knocking copy which looks to have been designed to hurt Meg, and damage those book sales.

No dog-whistle racism here, then

Arguably, that one article was the signal for yet more press piling-on, more sneering hatred directed at Meg, more vicious bigotry, more deliberately portraying her as the “difficult Duchess”. Yet Ms Tominey has the gall to play victim. And blame someone else.

Well, I couldn’t give a rat’s arse about her victimhood. Because she isn’t one.

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Saturday 27 March 2021

Dan Hodges Bristol Baloney BUSTED

The protests in the city of Bristol last weekend, we were told, had resulted in more than one Police officer suffering broken bones. There had been an instance of an officer having a collapsed lung. Some observers with long memories of creative post-event injuries, though, were unimpressed. They were right: it was later admitted that none of the cops had suffered broken bones, or collapsed lungs. And it got worse.

He's desperate, Dan

The focus moved to claims of disproportionate response to peaceful protests. There were then more protests, and more such claims. Last night brought yet more of both, this time featuring one journalist gratuitously set upon by Avon and Somerset’s finest. He has now been asked to contact the Police, but is proving understandably reluctant, given what happened the last time he contacted them. But the cops have their defenders.

To no surprise at all, Priti Patel, inexplicably made Home Secretary, has backed them to the hilt. And so has the client journalism class, exemplified by a magnificently wrong headed outburst from the Mail on Sunday’s not even slightly celebrated blues artiste Whinging Dan Hodges. Desperate Dan wants to blame the Rotten Lefties™ for it all.

Er, hang on, the smirk's stuck

Moreover, it was, for Hodges, an example of Labour’s lack of suitability for office. I kid you not:”Seeing quite a few ‘the police in Bristol didn't suffer punctured lungs, or broken bones!!! Nadia Whittome was right!!!’ tweets. Labour really are going to have to lose again before people on the left get it, aren't they”. As ever, the question marks ain’t making it.

Owen Jones pointed out the all too obvious. “Few self-styled democracies on earth have so many prominent journalists so utterly committed to speaking power to truth, to loyally serving the interests - and regurgitating the propaganda - of the authorities than here in Britain”. Client journalism called out. But now it was Hodges’ turn not to get it.

After all, he could always play the Corbyn card. It works when he puts it in his MoS columns, so why not here? “If Jermey [sic] Corbyn had (God forbid) won, how much truth to power do you think Owen would have been speaking”. FREEZE PEACH would have been erased, readers! But he had a serious point to make, even it if was a wrong one.

Another perfect example of why Labour will keep losing. A giant social media loop is feeding off itself as we speak, convinced if you point to the fact police officers were only hospitalised, and didn't in fact suffer broken bones and punctured lungs, the Left are winning”. It’s just something on Twitter. The old Fraser Nelson ploy. And there was more.

Until the Left decide votes are more important than Twitter likes and retweets, I don't see how Labour returns to power. It's not actually that they push daft stuff that turns off voters. It's that all their energy is channeled into mutual reassurance on social media platforms”. Which shows Hodges is the one who doesn’t get it: this isn’t about anyone pretending they are winning. It is about inept Government excusing heavy-handed Policing.

Dan Hodges has become so firmly wedged in his own sub-Spiked rut that he sees legitimate concern and real free speech about it as something to be not merely avoided, but dismissed as a mere “election loser”. It doesn’t affect him, anyway. Policing can be as heavy-handed as Ms Patel likes: he’s got his six-figure wedge and he should care. He’s crossed that floor and no way is he ever going to show any sign of regret. Sad, really.

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