Broadsheets Category

Top news from The Times, Daily Telegraph, The Indepedent and The Guardian newspapers

Mucca V Macca: Home Movies, Hunting Heather And Smiles

mucca-macca.pngBEFORE marrying Heather Mills, Paul McCartney was a popular singer, and a singer of popular songs.

“Is everybody having a good time?” asked McCartney. “I can’t hear you at the back!” was his catchphrase. They went wild for it.

Then Paul recorded the Frog Chorus and married Heather Mills. His separation from her is now front-page news:


Mills (“pink blouse, black skirt and high-heeled leather boots”) is at the High Court with her sister Fiona and a make-up artiste.

McCartney (“pink stripe suit, white shirt, black and white knitted scarf and black shoes”) is there, substituting his weeping guitar in favour of Nicholas Mostyn QC (ginger wig, butcher’s coat and killer heels).

DAILY MIRROR: “GET BACK – Macca’s ‘no concessions’ as divorce fights begins”

A blonde lawyer called Vanessa tells us the judge, Sir Hugh Bennett, is “sensible”

DAILY MAIL: “Look whose smiling after Day One in court.”

We looks but the pictures of Mucca (Heather Mills) and Macca reveal the former snarling as if restraining a bout of wind and the latter looking tight-lipped and aged.

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Posted: 12th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Celebrities, Tabloids | Comments (7) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

House Of Commons Cleaner Evades Border Police

police.jpgELAINE Chaves Aparecida is a cleaner at the House of Commons.

Police arrive and perform a random check on her security pass. It is not hers.

Aparecida has been working in the Commons since December 3 last year as the employee of Emprise Services, as the Telegraph reports.

Under questioning, Miss Chaves, 31, admits that she has run away from immigration officials at Heathrow Terminal 4 in December 2004 before she could be refused entry.

That’s the plan. Get to Heathrow. Strand in line at immigration. And when asked a tricky question, run.

And if you want to be really clever go and get a job cleaning the seat of power…

Posted: 11th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Betting Odds Are Research For Lazy Journalists

bookmakers.jpg“TRIUMPH for Day-Lewis but Baftas defy bookies,” announces the Guardian’s front page.

The bookmaker’s odds are the lazy reporter’s barometer of shock and sensation.

No need for a newspaper to make a decision and engage in actual research when they can just say Pete Doherty is a generous 1,000 to win the London marathon.

The odds are displayed as if to reflect popular sentiment. But this is only true if there is a market for the bet. You need someone to offer the odds and take the bet. And only a nutter or someone who misunderstands the nature of what speed is would back Pete Doherty to win a 26-plus mile long running race. The odds are less important than the amount of money wagered.

It is of course PR, the reporter being fed a bit of fact by the bookmakers – Daniel Day’s a 33-1 outsider for the cinematography gong, and I’d take it with a treble on Jan Archibald and Didier Lavergne (evens) to get the best make-up and hair prize, and felt to be discovered on Mars (230-1).

Have any of you ever met a punter who has placed a bet on the Baftas? Have you never meet anyone who uses their phone cards and shakes off the effects of prescription drugs long enough to vote on a Daily Express phone poll?

What are the odds on doing so..?

Posted: 11th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

First Crown Court Case With No Jury

NOTES the Telegraph: “Prosecutors are planning to apply for permission to hold a major criminal trial without a jury in what would be a legal first for England.

The Crown is pressing for a judge-only trial because of concerns that jurors in the case could be subject to intimidation or bribery.

It is understood the request – which will be submitted to the judge on Tuesday – follows consultation with the Director of Public Prosecution.

Why now? Why is this case so execeptional? When the Anorak worked on and around Fleet Street, I used to spend many rainy afternoons sat in the gallery at the Old Bailey. When brave enough, I’d glance at the other members of the gallery who would often be friends and family of the accused. They would stare hard at the witnesses and then the jury. Some would be around the nearby St Paul’s Station or on the platform to see the witnesses emerging.

No jury. No problem…


Posted: 11th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comments (3) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Smoke Damage At Camden Market

camden-town-fire.jpgA FIRE at Camden Market. Smoke.

Says the Times: “Smoke still hung heavy over the Canal section of Camden’s famous market this afternoon, a pungent reminder of last night’s blaze.”

No, not josticks. Not herbal cigarettes. Not even burnt falafel. More a combination of all three, plus the stench of smoke-damaged buildings and carpet.

Reports the Times: “The area’s most famous pub, the Hawley Arms, which attracts celebrities such as Amy Winehouse, Kate Moss and Sadie Frost, was gutted.”

A celebrity fire. The disaster for the stall holders who may have lost their livlihoods is given perpective…

Posted: 10th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Prostitution And Politics: Government Clamp Down On Legal Activity

vice-cards.jpgTHE Times reports: “Ministers want to block the phone numbers of prostitutes who advertise their services in newspapers and telephone booths in an attempt to stifle the illegal sex trade.

“Police forces would identify suspected prostitutes to the telephone companies, which would be required to cut off their numbers.”

So if you are suspected of being a prostitute – not proven – you will have your phone cut off?

Prostitution – exchanging participation in sexual activities for money or other goods – in the UK is not illegal but there are a number of offences linked to it. For example, it is an offence to ‘procure’ a prostitute or to use premises as a brothel and thereby live off ‘immoral earnings’.

So the Government is going to cut off the phones of people engaging in legal activity?

And that’s not all. “It is 10 times more dangerous to work on the streets than in a flat. It will drive it underground,” says Cari Mitchell of the English Collective of Prostitutes.

Yes, the English Collective of Prostitutes. A Co-operative. Group sex, or a party line, as the Government would term it…

Note – Withough tart cards what would be the point of public phones boxes, although, admittedly, urinals are not as common as they once were?

Can you sticker a mobile phone? It costs a minimum of 40p to make a call from a BT phone box. Local calls on mobiles can often be free. Does this make a BT phone box a clip joint? And if clients use the boxes, is BT living off immoral earnings?

Posted: 10th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comments (2) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Global Warming: Cars To Leave Lights On All Day

cars.jpgAS reported in the Telegraph: “All new cars are to be fitted with automatic daytime headlights within four years.”

Leave the lights on all day? Who says?

The Government previously opposed the idea on the grounds that using lights in the daytime would increase fuel consumption and emissions, but conceded it was unable to oppose European legislation.

Says Jim Fitzpatrick, the road safety minister: “The UK has been successful in arguing against the introduction of mandatory use of dipped headlamps during daylight hours by drivers of existing vehicles.

“However, from early 2011 all new types of passenger cars and light vans will have to be fitted with dedicated daytime running lamps in accordance with the relevant European directive. By summer 2012, all new vehicles will have to be so fitted.”

Leave your lights on in the summer. The endless summer…

Posted: 10th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comments (3) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Gerry Adams Driver Was A Spy

irish-republican-army.jpgROY McShane once drove for Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams. He has been outed as a British spy

McShane was nicknamed – irony of ironies – “Roy the Rat”. He is in hiding, as the Telegraph reports.

Sinn Féin says Mc McShane can come home whenever he likes. He ahs nothing to fear.

“He is under no threat from republicans. If he wishes to return, it is up to him to make peace with his community and in particular his family,” a Sinn Féin spokesman says.

Forgive and forget. It’s the IRA’s motto…

Posted: 9th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Antonio de Pascale And His ‘Lolita’ Make Waves In Italy

lolita_book_cover.pngIN Italy a 34-year-old Italian man has had sex with a 13-year-old girl.

Antonio de Pascale, a butcher from Vicenza, had a four-month long relationship with the unnamed girl.

In court, de Pascale’s lawyers put forward the notion of a “deep tenderness” between their client and the girl, with whom he had “fallen head over heels in love”.

The lawyers say the girl had wilfully taken part in the affair. Lolita?

De Pascale could be sentenced to 12 years in jail. But the court in Vicenza hears the lawyers words, and they strike a chord. De Pascale is sentenced to just one year and four months in jail.

A sentence of less than three years means de Pascale is unlikely to serve any jail time.

Antonio Marziale, the president of the Association for the Protection of the Rights of Minors, says: “It is not right to judge whether or not a 13-year-old girl is willing. The law should safeguard young girls who are too immature to make these decisions against adults without scruples.”

Simonetta Matone, a judge in Rome, said the law must “always look to be reasonable in these cases… Every relationship is a relationship and the real maturity, whether physical or psychological, of the minor must be weighed, with the help of experts.”

De Pascale broke the law. But did he get away with it too lightly? Who is right?

Posted: 8th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comments (9) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

The End Of Women’s Studies, And Other Useless Qualifications

millie-tant.jpgSTOP burning your bra and plaiting your leg hair. Women’s studies, aka Wimmin’s studies, is disappearing from British universities. As the Telegraph reports:

Over the last five years, numbers have dropped by 75 per cent and only 35 students are doing it this year. This summer, the last place offering the course, London Metropolitan University, is stopping women’s studies altogether…

Students have begun to realise, too, that women’s studies is useless for getting you a job. It’s no coincidence that the subject’s collapse coincided with the introduction of tuition fees. The moment you start paying for something is the moment you consider whether it’s really worthwhile.

Do you really need a degree? Do you really need a degree in geography?

Posted: 8th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comments (7) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion For Children

MORE Richard Dawkins news.

After the video of his funeral, we learn that the German government is considering banning a children’s book in which Jews are “portrayed in a way likened to anti-Semitic caricatures from the Nazi era”.

The book, which has been described as being Richard Dawkins’s The God Delusion for children, conducts a highly critical tour of Christianity, Islam and Judaism.


Posted: 7th, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Bigamists And Polygamists Can Claim Multiple Benefits

NEWS is that husbands with multiple wives will be allowed to claim extra welfare benefits.

Reports the Telegraph: “Even though bigamy is a crime in Britain, the decision by ministers means that polygamous marriages can now be recognised formally by the state, so long as the weddings took place in countries where the arrangement is legal…

New guidelines on income support from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) state: “Where there is a valid polygamous marriage the claimant and one spouse will be paid the couple rate … The amount payable for each additional spouse is presently £33.65.”

In Britain, bigamy is punishable by up to seven years in prison. Jail may be more costly than paying out benefits.

We will wait and see how long it is before an MP is found to be paying his entire harem from the Commons’ cheque book…

Posted: 3rd, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Politicians | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Politics Is A Family Business

peter-hain-toast.jpgPETER Hain employs his 80-year-old mother on a House of Commons salary of £5,400 a year.

Hain has used Adelaine Hain as a part-time secretary for 16 years.

The Telegraph reports that more than 170 MPs – one in four – employ family members.

Indeed, more power to them. The money saved on advertising positions vacant and interviewing candidates must save the public purse a not inconsiderable sum. 

Anroak recommends this policy being developed and candidate MPs required to have at least one member of the family with decent shorthand, a sound telephone manner and their own pen…  

Owen Paterson, the shadow secretary of state for Northern Ireland whose wife Rose is paid almost £30,000 year to work for him, said: “If you can find me a Cambridge graduate who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of my constituency, who is willing to work long and anti-social hours at very short notice for that sort of salary then good luck. Until then, my wife is the best person for the job.”


Picture: Peter Hain is toast – Poldraw

Posted: 3rd, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Politicians | Comments (4) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Lily Allen’s Rider: Monster Munch, Madonna And Carey

THSOE Tours riders in full: Lily Allne, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez,  Madonna, Barbra Streisand, Beyonce, Elton  John:

Lily Allen
Bottle of Jack Daniel’s whiskey.
Four bottles of champagne.
Twelve packets of Monster Munch (pickled onion flavour).
Puppy (nighttime only)

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Posted: 2nd, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Celebrities | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Two Million ‘Wrongly Get Benefit’

A NATION of  shopkeepers kept shoppers:

Up to two thirds of people claiming incapacity benefit are not entitled to the state handout, the Government’s new welfare adviser warns today.

That’s 1.9million of us.

Says Tim: “Anybody at all who has looked at these figures knows that Incapacity Benefit has been a parking place for long term unemployed”

Posted: 2nd, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Money | Comments (3) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Dad Rules: A Chick Lit Parody

coleen.jpg“MEN’S heads are filled with confusion, fear and football statistics,” writes Andrew Clover in the Times.

Andrew is a champion of man’s lib, and has written a book called Dad Rules. It is a pun.

Here’s a sample of Mr Clover’s writing: “Saturday night. I sleep with my wife and baby. It’s like being in a trench in Flanders. Bright lights beam. Bodily matter is ejected and consumed. People scream, but their writhing mouths can’t say the word ‘Mummy’. I behave like a captain during bombardment.”

How’s that, then? Until we see Ross Kemp in Afghanistan most of us how no idea how a captain behaves when under attack. Perhaps he writes a blog post?

Reading this, we wonder if Andrew is a woman’s name, and if Andrew is the name of any of the panelists on Loose Women. It might be Coleen Nolan’s nom de plume, and more power to her were it so.

But we fear Andrew is a man. But as we reach for the pills, it dawns on us that this is a neat parody on the most trite kind of chick lit, a male reply to Fashionably Latte, Anorak’s own work.

All it lacks is a name for this kind of writing. Any suggestions..?

Posted: 1st, February 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

John Edwards And Rudy Giliani Stand As Independent Candidates

john-edwards-hair.jpgTHE INDEPENDENT brings its readers a “FREE US ELECTION WALLCHART”.


The Indy is too modest. This is more than you or anyone needs to know.

The poster unfurls to reveal that John Edwards and Rudy Giuliani are “CONTENDERS FOR THE WHITE HOUSE”.

Both men have, as all papers and news wires report, now retired from the race.

The Independent seems unlucky. But it has been here before. With the result of the New Hampshire primary still unknown, its front page featured a picture of Barack Obama and the legend: “IOWA… NEW HAMPSHIRE…AMERICA?”

The answer was: “YES…NO….MAYBE.”

Posted: 31st, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Politicians | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Work For The State Or Work For McDonalds

mcdonalds-burger-king.jpgYESTERDAY’S news that McDonalds’ is to offer its own qualifications “equal to GCSEs”, occupies the Guardian’s leader writer.

“The fear that education would fall prey to the profiteers emerged yesterday after it was announced that authority to award A-level-style qualifications was being given to three firms: the airline Flybe, Network Rail and, most iconically, McDonald’s. If McQualifications were to displace traditional study, that would surely do for erudition what fast food has done for the diet.”

The Guardian is like that American teacher who gives their failing students an F-grade and an McDonald’s application form. This will inspire them to become more academic, not just give up and get a McJob.

And then this: Gordon Brown yesterday warned of the dire fate that would befall Britain if it failed to close its skills gap…The response is a mixed one, Mr Brown proposes heavy-handed welfare reforms along with welcome expansion in public sector apprenticeships. His plans are far from perfect, but it is to be hoped they will do the trick, because, for all yesterday’s McFlurry of publicity, McQualifications will not be enough.”

So, you can learn from the state – good – but learning from a hugely successful private enterprise is bad? And how do you get the money to fund State-run apprenticeships?

Posted: 29th, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Money, Politicians | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Jerome Kerviel Anti-Anglo French Hero

JEROME Kerviel has committed the biggest individual fraud in history. In France, he’s a hero:

France behind the biggest ‘rogue trader’ scandal of all time. Some 300 miles west of Paris, in his home village of Pont l’Abbé on the Brittany peninsula, Kerviel is a hero – particularly with the ladies in the hair salon his mother used to own.

‘He was your ideal son-in-law,’ said 62-year-old Martine Le Pohon, who remembers Jérôme helping his mother out on Saturdays at Un Monde Imagin’ Hair. ‘And if it turns out that he has stood up to the system to the tune of €5m, well, as far as I am concerned, that makes him even more ideal.’

Maryvonne Even, 40, said Kerviel was a scapegoat. ‘He was probably caught fiddling – a bit – and the bosses decided to blame him for all their losses,’ she said.

But this is not just local Breton solidarity. In France, where there is profound popular distrust for big finance, strong opposition to ‘international capitalism’ and a belief in the ‘French model’ as opposed to ‘savage Anglo-Saxon liberalism’, the views of the ladies in Pont l’Abbé are widespread.

It’s all our fault…

Posted: 27th, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Money | Comments (5) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Celebrities, Royals And MPs Demand Equal Tax Status

anthea_tax.jpg“ONLINE tax system ‘too risky’ for the famous,” says the Telegraph.

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs admits the system is not secure enough to be used by MPs, celebrities and the Royal Family, although not necessarily in that order.

The risk is that Tax records contain NI numbers, bank account and salary details – all valuable to fraudsters.

Men in cravats and generous ears will pass themselves off as Prince Charles; freckly youths called Wayne will clean Argos of jewellery; people will think Gordon Brown spends £26,467 a year on hair gel.

As such, thousands of “high profile” people have been “secretly barred” from using the online tax return system.

From this October, non VIPs are required to file a self-assessment online or face a fine. However, HMRC has a list of those excluded from the new rules who must send hard copies of returns for “security reasons”.

As the paper notes: “HMRC stressed that all taxpayers’ details were secure.”


But this smacks of discrimination. Why should the great and good be prevented from accessing the same cutting-edge technology as the rest of us, forced instead to use ancient ink and embarrassing paper?

A rebellion is already underway. The We Are Not Celebs movement is petitioning for a change in the rules.

Reports are that Kerry Katona, Anthea Turner and Bubble from Big Brother 3 have already signed up and are telling everyone and everyone that they are not really celebrities and challenging the Government to spot their talent.

Prince Edward denies being a Royal and Sarah Teather says only a madman would describe her as an MP…


Posted: 26th, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Celebrities, Money | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Firm Workers: Paying Fat Workers To Lose Weight

fat-firms.jpgFAT people will be offered money to lose weight.

It’s Pounds for Pounds. And if the fatties pound the pavement and run it’s Pounds For Pounds For Pounds.

Sadly, the initiative already has a name – Healthy Weight, Healthy Lives – and is under the auspices of the Well@Work scheme.

The Telegraph says that one competition, called The Biggest Loser, awarded £130 in gift vouchers for the participant who lost the most weight.

This is just the start.

Companies should be encouraged to flag their interests, perhaps replacing the Ltd and PLC parts of their names with something to reveal that their clinically obese staff have signed up to the scheme.

What about [company name] FAT or FLAB (Fat Loser Aerobic Business)?

And there are are the belly ads…

Posted: 24th, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Money | Comments (2) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Boiling At The Celebrity Government’s Cook Cook

THE Government-funded School Food Trust wants to reintroduce cooking lessons into the school curriculum.

Of course, this has already been done via Jamie’s School Dinners. Jamie Oliver is the Essex lad who points at a working class man’s dinner and goes “Ugh!”.

Oliver invited us to do it at a school. Urg! And then again at a chicken farm. Urg!!

It is of course not all Oliver’s fault. He needs approval from on high; he needs the politicians to buy into celebrity and believe in the power of telly.

Indeed, so intoxicating is celebrity that the Government has launched its own cook book…

Posted: 23rd, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Tory Party Fudge And Faith

fudge.jpg“TORY fudge on faith,” says the Time’s front-page headline.

Surely jam?

Or what about a light sponge sandwich with a lemon crud filling..?

Posted: 23rd, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Politicians | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Ringo Starr Falls Prey To Liverpool’s Culture Vultures

beatles.pngLIVERPOOL is the Capital of Culture.
Everyone wants to be a Liverpudlian this year. Londoners are gargling with thickened mayonnaise to get their right accents and pass themselves off as one of the cultured elite.
Devonians have begun a campaign to have the former Liverpool-based soap Brookside reinvigorated in Torbay.

But not everyone can be a Liverpudlian – not even all Liverpudlians can.

Says the Independent: “Liverpool turns on Ringo for saying he misses nothing about the city.”

Ringo is Ringo Starr, voice of Thomas the Tank Engine and a sometime percussionist.

There’s Ringo Starr stood on top of the St George’s Hall giving full throat to “Liverpool I left you, but I never let you down”.

And here’s Starr on Jonathan Ross’s radio show, responding to a question as to what he misses about the city. Anything? “Er, no…,” says Starr. “Look I love Liverpool. I was a child in Liverpool. I grew up in Liverpool. My family members are in Liverpool. But you know…

“I had to tell the audience, as it was so excited, that I was this close to coming back. But I had a great time up there at the weekend [during the opening ceremony]. I did.”

Cue the Liverpudlians. Says the paper: “Within hours the city’s local newspaper, The Liverpool Echo, was inundated with calls from angry readers and more than 1,500 people had posted on the paper’s website forums, venting their anger.”

Anorak has begun a petition to erase Starr from history and replace his effigy with that of Little Jimmy Osmond singing Long Haired Lover from Liverpool.

But we cannot do it alone and require a budget to pay for a shiny tracksuit, a few thousand locals to say that they are related by marriage to Osmond and a lorra lorra laughs…

Posted: 22nd, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Celebrities | Comments (13) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Alan Johnson’s Anti-Fat Pied Piper

ice-cream.JPG“GOVERNMENT may ban fast food near schools,” says the Telegraph.

“Ministers are concerned that many older children shun healthy school lunches for junk food, while younger pupils use ‘pester power’ to force their parents to buy them unhealthy snacks on the way home.”

Odd that this Government wants to curtail choice; choice is the mantra for all the main political parties. Odder still that the Government should want to stop children walking to the shops and buying cheap protein.

Perhaps the thinking is that if the fast food shops are removed further from the schools the nippers will have to walk further and so burn off more fat?

Says Health Secretary, Alan Johnson: “Hazel Blears [the Community Secretary] and I will also look at how the planning system can help all areas by making sure that planning decisions promote physical activity with better use of the regulations that enable local authorities to limit the spread of fast food outlets especially near parks and schools.”

As such, we can expect the ice-cream van to less stop than slow to the proscribed 5mp, the Mr Whippy Pied Piper leading the fatties and potential fatties through the streets, his tinky-tonk Greensleeves cranked up to a fat-burning 120-plus beats per minute.

Any children fallen the wayside will be rolled into the road and used as speed calming devices, and objects of fun.

It’s joined-up Government…

Posted: 21st, January 2008 | In: Broadsheets | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0