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A rapist locked in a prison with women: what can go wrong?

On the heels of Jessica Winfield, the rapist born Martin Ponting who was moved to a women’s prison after undergoing a sex change, and who, allegedly, was isolated from female lags after making unwelcome sexual advances, we meet Davina Ayrton, formerly David. Davina Ayrton is starting an eight year prison term for taping a 15-year-old schoolgirl in a Portsmouth garage.  Davina is still in possession of her male genitalia.

And so to the moral maze: in court Ayrton expressed a desire to serve her time in a women’s prison. Is it right that rapist is housed in a women’s prison? Can it be right that female prisoners are housed with a convicted rapist? Whose rights are at stake here: the rapist who wants to be a woman; or women?

It can only be right and proper that the government works hard to understand the lot of transgender prisoners. Government figures suggest there are 0.8 transgender prisoners reported per 1,000 prisoners in custody. There are about 88,000 people in UK prisoners. Is it time for a trans-only prison?

In 2015, trans woman Tara Hudson was sentenced to 12 weeks in the all-male Bristol Prison. Her mother Jackie Brooklyn told the Bath Chronicle: “I want Tara to be the last victim of a system which desperately needs bringing into the modern world.” Hudson told the BBC: “I could tell that they weren’t really ready for a prisoner like myself. Because of my gender identity they felt they had to lock me up in segregation and keep me away from the main population of the prison. I felt like I was being persecuted by the state… I felt I had no rights.. I felt like an animal in a zoo.”

Add her ordeal to the fates of Vicky Thompson, 21, and Joanne Latham, 38, from Nottingham, who were both sent to male prisons and the picture for trans prisoners is bleak.

Something needs to be done, for certain. But housing convicted rapists with women is not it.

Posted: 20th, November 2017 | In: News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Scientists make shock discovery: the internet invented sex

Stop sniggering. News is that sex education “may need to become more graphic” to keep pace with experimental teens engaging in “taboo practices”.

Boffins at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and University College London have been monitoring what the Telegraph terms the “changing sexual practices of youngsters since 1990”. Is monitoring young people having sex a kink, one of those taboos? The sex researchers’ findings are published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, and via a press release.  In it we read:

Whilst vaginal intercourse and oral sex remained the most common combination of sexual practices experienced in the past year, the proportion of sexually active 16-24 year olds who said they have had vaginal, oral and anal sex during the last year has risen, from approximately one in ten women and men in 1990-1991, to one in four men and one in five women in 2010-2012. Some of the largest increases in the prevalence of oral and anal sex over the past decade were observed among those aged 16-18.

Observed? No. Just what those surveyed felt able to say they engaged in. No need for a dark room anymore when you can just click and save. Every generation likes to feel as though they invented sex, and him, her and the turkey baster did it just the once in order to create the wonder of you. But the sex that doesn’t lead to a missionary’s idea of procreation has always been popular.  (Have you seen Catherine the Great’s furniture?) Still, we’re at the bleeding edge of sex, so the Sun can read the researchers’ notes, overlook the fact that in 1275, the first age of consent was set in England at age 12, and declare: “Brits are having sex younger than ever – and experimenting more in bed.”

And it’s all about the internet, sink of porn and depravity.

 

Literature from the staid 1950s (more)

 

The press release tells us:

Lead author Dr Ruth Lewis, who conducted the work while at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine but is now based at the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow, said: “At a time when much sex and relationships education is being updated, keeping pace with current trends in sexual practices is crucial so that curricula are tailored to the realities of young people’s experiences.”

Masturbation: discuss.

“By shedding light on when some young people are having sex and what kinds of sex they are having, our study highlights the need for accurate sex and relationships education that provides opportunities to discuss consent and safety in relation to a range of sexual practices. This will equip young people with the information and skills they need to maximise their wellbeing from the outset of their sexual lives.”

Kaye Wellings, senior author and Professor of Sexual and Reproductive Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, echoes the view that sex is a problem. “It is important to keep up to date with trends in sexual lifestyles to help young people safeguard their health and increase their well being,” she says.

Then this:

They found that the number of 16-24s moving away from traditional sexual intercourse had doubled, with experts claiming that the easy access to internet pornography was partly behind the rise..

Medieval French manuscript showing nuns picking “fruit” from “a medieval penis tree”.

Before web porn: French manuscript showing nuns picking “fruit” from “a medieval penis tree”.

 

 The thinking is that as the kids find new way to get their rock off, adults must keep overtake them and get in tune with what they might be into next (good luck guessing what they’re into) . The sex educator explains everything to the rutting youth, who realising that what hasn’t been said is the new ‘taboo’, decide to have a go at that bit. One upon a time, kids had the ‘dirty squad‘, pop stars, saucy postcards, wartime sado-masochism, art and mucky books to tell them what was naughty. Now they have adult experts in what to do and how to do it.

Posted: 20th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Gaia Pope: suing the police for a crime that never happened

After the febrile reporting and shadowy photos of innocent people, police say foul play played no part in the death of Gaia Pope, the 19-year-old who went missing in bucolic Dorset.

 

murder gaia pope

 

You might wonder why police arrested three people on suspicion of murder. All three were released under investigation. Greg Elsey, whose son Paul Elsey was arrested by police, accuses investigators of behaving like “wooden tops“. He says his son can prove he was elsewhere when Gaia Pope went missing. So why was Paul Elsey arrested and subjected to harsh media scrutiny?

The newspapers piled in, as ever they must when a photogenic blonde is missing. But from front-page news, the Express relegates the case of “tragic” Gaia Pope to page 4. The police says the young woman might have taken her own life or died of natural causes.

The Mail presents her death as a mystery, asking a question we will never know the answer to. “Did fear of prisoner who assaulted her push Gaia to suicide?” asks the Mail, wrapping two questions into a headline to which the only sensible answer is ‘no’.

 

Gaia Pope newspapers front pages

Blonde woman goes missing

 

As for that assault, a “friend” tells the paper: “She was assaulted when she was 17 and I think she thought the man would be released early from prison.”

We are free to speculate, of course, but why did an apparent objective police investigation lead to the arrests of three people and talk of murder? Surely they knew of Gaia Pope’s past, and of her severe epilepsy, which, we are told, could take her life at any time? We read now that Paul Elsey, Nathan Elsey and Rosemary Dinch, the three innocent people arrested for a crime that never took place, are planning to sue police for wrongful arrest.

 

The Sun zooms in on innocent Paul Elsey

 

Over in the Sun, which talked of police “swooping” on Paul Esley’s “prized” car – no, not that car –  the story (page 7) is one of “Tragic Gaia’s Attack Agony”. The paper reads the dead woman’s mind. “She feared fiend’s release,” says the paper. She did? Well, maybe. Maybe not.

In the Daily Mirror (page 9), Gaia is the “tragic teen”. She is “Gaia from Langton Matravers”. In the Sun she is “Gaia from Swanage”. Gaia Pope was from Langton Matravers. She was staying at an address in Swanage when she disappeared on Tuesday 7 November 2017.

Such are the facts.

UPDATE: Det Supt Paul Kessell, of Dorset Police tells everyone:

“We have today released from our investigation two men, aged 19 and 49, and a 71-year-old woman, all from Swanage, who had been arrested and were assisting with our enquiries. I appreciate our enquiries would have caused these individuals stress and anxiety, however we have an obligation in any missing person investigation to explore every possible line of enquiry. The public would expect Dorset Police to fully investigate the sudden disappearance of a teenage girl. Our aim was not only to find Gaia but to find out what happened to her. Gaia’s family has been informed of this latest development and our thoughts remain with all her family and friends at this incredibly difficult time.”

What happened to people ‘helping he police with their enquiries’? Why the rush towards arrest?

 

Posted: 20th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Tabloids | Comments (5) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Gaia Pope: no injuries to suggest ‘any other person was involved’ in her death

Gaia Pope is dead. The Press have been speculating over her cause of death. Murder has been the word most used. Now police say there is no evidence “any other person was involved” in the death of the 19-year-old, whose remains were found in a field near Swanage, Dorset. This is after police arrested three people on suspicion of murder.

 

 

Det Supt Paul Kessell tells us: “The post-mortem examination has not identified any injuries to suggest any other person was involved in her death. The cause of death is undetermined, pending toxicology. The coroner is involved in the oversight of these examinations but at this time this remains an investigation into an unexplained death.”

Did the police stuff up? Being accused of murder is no small thing.

The Mail had more:

Her father Richard Sutherland, a business development manager, said his ‘distressed’ daughter had been told she could die at any moment because her epilepsy was so severe.

And she was also battling post-traumatic stress disorder after a ‘devastating’ assault by ‘some guys’ when she was 17, he said, made worse because the main perpetrator is reportedly set for release from prison.

Now the Sun tells us: “Gaia Pope cops reveal teenager was NOT MURDERED.”

Below is the photo the Sun used to introduce readers to Paul Elsey, one of the three people arrested on suspicion of murder and released under police investigation.

 

 

Is that the kind of photo that suggests anything to you? Innocence is presumed, right? The Sun reported: “Forensic officers made a midnight swoop on the prized VW Golf of Paul Elsey, 49.” Prized? Why prized? Why swoop?

Mr Paul Elsey’s father Greg told media:

“Paul is fine but all this attention isn’t fair, please just give him some space. What I will say is the way the police have handled this is terrible, it’s shocking. My family has totally been the victim of a witch hunt. They should start looking elsewhere. I think of the public money which has been wasted, which could have been spent searching for Gaia and finding those clothes a long time ago.”

He added:

“I’m totally disgusted. Paul’s solicitor has asked me not to say anything. You will be gobsmacked how the police have formed [their investigation]. Absolutely disgusting. What I said this morning is that I would find [Paul] and have a chat with him. He was going to ring the police station and arrange to see them if they wanted. That was the agreement we came to. That’s the agreement I and the solicitors made. I can’t say anything more but you will find out and you will be disgusted, the same as I was.”

And:

“The officers running this investigation seem to be a bunch of wooden tops.  It especially feels like they arrested Paul just to make it look like they were doing something.  It’s felt like they can’t find the poor girl so they said ‘ let’s go and nick him’. We have only ever tried to help – both Gaia and the police.”

 

Previously

Posted: 19th, November 2017 | In: News, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Arsenal balls: after Mugabe Zimbabwe Gooners demand ‘Wenger Out’

As Robert Mugabe is toppled, protesters in the depot’s native Zimbabwe turn to the next great dictator: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

 

wenger arsenal mugabe

 

Lest we forget:

 

 

“I used to live in Zimbabwe and I’ve watched Robert Mugabe ruin the country, and Wenger is doing the same. He’s the Mugabe of Arsenal.”

 

Seems fair.

Posted: 19th, November 2017 | In: Arsenal, Back pages, Money, News, Politicians, Sports | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Gaia Pope: The last sighting, lives ruined and hiding the truth

 

Police searching for  Gaia Pope have found a body on land near Swanage, Dorset. The family of the 19-year-old woman are “absolutely devastated”. Detective Superintendent Paul Kessell tells media: “Although the body has yet to be formally identified, we are confident that we have found Gaia.”

Gaia, who had severe epilepsy, had been missing since November 7. Last Thursday her clothes were found in a field near cliffs.

What happened? A 71-year-old woman, a 19-year-old man and a 49-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of murder. All three have been released under investigation. No crime has been established.

The Sun names the innocent trio:

Nathan Elsey, 19, who starred in Christopher Nolan’s film Dunkirk with Harry Styles, was arrested alongside his grandmother, Rosemary Dinch, 71…

Gaia had been temporarily staying at Mrs Dinch’s house at the time of her disappearance. Paul Elsey, the uncle of friend Nathan, was then arrested on suspicion of Gaia’s murder on 16 November.

The Sun zooms in on 69-year-old Greg Elsey, taking a photo of the man and captioning it: “Greg Elsey accused the police of a ‘witch hunt’ against his family.”

Doorstepped, he tells the Mail:

“I’m absolutely bewildered that he was arrested, I’ve got no idea why he was taken. I mean, for God’s sake, he was working all day in Weymouth when Gaia went missing, he had nothing to do with it. He lives with his mother Rosemary and takes care of her, he goes back there each night, that’s the only link he’s got with it.  Police took him in and he said ‘look, what on Earth am I doing here? I’ve got nothing to do with this.  He’s staying with a friend at the moment just chilling out. I saw him last night and he’s alright.  I’ve got no way of getting hold of him, they’ve taken his phone, they’ve taken everyone’s phones. It’s ruined Rosemary and Nathan’s life, she was just being nice on the day, all police had to do was say to her they want to ask her a few questions and that would be fine but they arrested her.”

 

gaia pope

 

The Mail‘s headline is at odds with the URL, which tells readers and the Google bots

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5095395/Man-arrested-Gaia-Pope-murder-goes-hiding.html

“Hiding”. Is that a loaded term?

The Mail adds:

Mrs Dinch, who shares a first-floor flat with her son Paul, was the last person to see the missing teenager alive.

Was she? The Sun tells it readers:

She [Gaia] was last seen in Swanage on 7 November, when CCTV captured her running past a house in Manor Gardens on Morrison Road. She was also filmed in a petrol station buying ice cream.

The BBC says:

The 19-year-old, who has severe epilepsy, was last seen on 7 November at 16:00 GMT by family friend Rosemary Dinch, off Morrison Road, Swanage. Dorset Police believes she was captured on CCTV running past a house in the same street about 20 minutes before.

ITV adds:

Less than an hour before her last confirmed sighting at 3.39pm, she was being driven between Langton Matravers and Swanage by a family member when they stopped off for fuel at St Michael’s Garage on Valley Road in Swanage. Gaia went into the garage to buy an ice cream at around 2.55pm before leaving.

It adds:

The last reported sighting of Gaia was at an address in Manor Gardens on Morrison Road at around 4pm on 7 November.

The Sun speculates:

THE last sighting of Gaia Pope may have been caught on chilling dashcam footage, which appears to show the teen leaning into a mystery car on the night she vanished.

The video, obtained by Mirror Online, shows a figure, dressed in similar clothing to those Gaia was wearing when she went missing, on the outskirts of Langton Matravers, just before midnight.

May, Appears. What facts? Undeterred by that exclusive’s lack of substance, the Mirror adds in a second story to its tasteful logo-heavy video: “Final footage of Gaia Pope before she went missing? Driver’s dashcam captures haunting ‘sighting’ of teen.” Adding: “A driver believes his haunting dashcam footage could have captured the last sighting of missing Gaia Pope.”

Believes. Could. No facts.

As for the state of Gaia Pope’s mind and body, The Guardian writes:

Pope had severe epilepsy, and her father had said earlier in the week that it may have played a part in her disappearance as she had been warned by doctors she was at risk of sudden death from the condition.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 19th, November 2017 | In: News, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Toy Freaks and other creepy ways to exploit children and get rich on YouTube

Ever see Toy Freaks? It was the 68th most popular channel on YouTube. It ‘was’ because it’s gone, banned for flouting YouTube’s “community guidelines”. Google, YouTube’s owners, were super cautious not to act too rashly, allowing Toy Freaks to post more than 500 videos over six years and garner over 7 billions views. Social Blade estimates the channel earned up to £8.7 million a year for the creators and just over £7m for Google.

As advertisers baulked at having their brands associated with Toy Freaks and other weird and often frighteningly unsettling YouTube channels, Google pulled the plug. Community guildines are nothing compared to the bottom line.

 

Toy Freaks with advert

Dropbox was not pleased to have its brand endorse the Toy Freaks video

 

What you missed was single dad Greg Chism, 46, aka “Freak Daddy”, filming his two daughters – named Annabelle and Victoria; age nine and seven, respectively – being freaked out by his antics. They are filmed “wearing baby clothes, sucking dummies and being terrified by live snakes”. One commentator saw “videos of the children vomiting and in pain”.

It turns out that you can’t dictate you audience, and if you publish videos of children in the bath screaming their heads off as dad tosses in a toy toad and claims it to be real, a few nasties arrive to take a long look. Below a film of the daughters playing in a swimming pool, a viewer wrote:

“Victoria, Annabelle, I’ve been wanting to call you for years and I want to call you today how do I call you what’s your number anyways please.”

Mr Chism, 46, offers:

“I am a single father of two daughters and solely focused on providing for their future. I am blessed that our family has been able to take such a remarkable journey in life while entertaining millions on YouTube.”

He’s swallowed the marketing guff. But he’s right: millions did watch; not all them children and bots. He continues:

“Unfortunately, allegations such as these are truly dangerous and reckless and sadly demonstrate the point that in today’s irresponsible internet culture, the truth is often rendered irrelevant.”

Carolyne Keenan, a child psychologist, adds:

“The Toy Freaks content contains footage of activities that a lot of children would not be allowed to do. One of the videos shows a child smashing a bowl of cereal off the table, encouraged by a much older man, a dad figure, to kill a fly for example.

“Videos like this allow children to explore a world that in real life would feel scary, dangerous or get them into trouble.”

It’s fantasy, right, but featuring actual children, which is peculiar. But is the broader issue here less the alleged exploitation of minors than fears of humanity being in thrall of technological advance? What is “irresponsible internet culture”? Printing, comic books, radio and TV were all met with a large doses of fear. But it’s not the kids freaking out; they’re alright. It’s the adults affecting young people’s lives with their own prejudices, perversions and anxieties.

Posted: 18th, November 2017 | In: News, Technology | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Schools ban glitter to save the planet but the human virus lives on

To the Tops Day Nurseries, which all 19 branches have banned the 3,000 children they care for from using…glitter. Tops’ MD Cheryl Hadland says the glitter is harming the planet.

“We did a survey a few months ago and 86% of our parents want us to be eco-sustainable,” says Hadland. “I think a lot of our parents really want us to do this.”

Those are the parent who drop their children off at the daycare centre in cars, right? And do any of these children have siblings or pets? Are we not all the human virus? Shouldn’t we all be sterilized? Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn opined:

“Humans represent the most obscene, perverted, cruel, uncivilised and lethal species ever to inhabit the planet and [we look] forward to the day when the inevitable asteroid slams into the earth and wipes them out, thus giving nature the opportunity to start again”

Of course, this is just glitter. It’s not as if people are trying to ban skirts, playing, mum’s lunchcrayons, glue, marking, tackling, blazers, the school run, words and sausage rolls.

If children want an eco-friendly alternative to glitter, they can always try mixing snot with dandruff.

Posted: 18th, November 2017 | In: News, The Consumer | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Steve Mnuchin and his wife posing with dollar bills is wonderfully revolting

Steve Mnuchin, the US Treasury Secretary, and his fragrant wife Louise Linton (top notes of mink perineum and aviation fuel over a puppy farm base) walked into the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Washington DC to see his signature on the new notes posed with the new lucre.

 

 

For purposes of identification, she’s the one dressed as Dick Dastardly’s getaway driver.

 

 

Go internet!

Posted: 17th, November 2017 | In: Money, News, Politicians | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Kenneth Branagh and the actor formerly known as Michelle Pfeiffer star in journalism horror show

Michael Pfeiffer

 

Copy and past news now, as the Metro tells us that Kenneth Branagh is starring in a remake of Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express. On set he was delighted to see fellow star “Michael Pfeiffer“. Any relation to screen goddess Michelle Pfeiffer? Dunno. But the rest of the busy tabloid media also salute the great Michael Pfeiffer:

Daily Express:

Speaking with ITV’s Lorraine, he said: “There was a lot of mutual respect.

“The first time they met on the platform I was on the train watching them all getting ready to come on. They were so sort of shy with each other, it was like the first day at school… Then the first person up the steps was Michael Pfeiffer and she had tears in her eyes and I thought, ‘Christ, we haven’t started and she’s already upset!’ And I said, ‘What’s wrong?’ and she said, ‘I just met Judi Dench!’”

Daily Mail:

He told Lorraine: ‘There was a lot of mutual respect. The first time they met on the platform I was on the train watching them all getting ready to come on. They were so sort of shy with each other, it was like the first day at school. ‘Then the first person up the steps was Michael Pfeiffer and she had tears in her eyes and I thought: “Christ, we haven’t started and she’s already upset!”

Daily Mirror:

“They were so sort of shy with each other, it was like the first day at school, then the first person up the steps was Michael Pfeiffer and she had tears in her eyes and I thought, ‘Christ, we haven’t started and she’s already upset!’ and I said, ‘What’s wrong?’ and she said, ‘I just met Judi Dench!’”

He added: “Judi Dench is the secret to casting movies basically, you cast her and she’s an actor magnet.”

 

murder on the orient express kenneth branagh michelle pfeiffer fail

murder on the orient express kenneth branagh michelle pfeiffer fail

 

murder on the orient express kenneth branagh michelle pfeiffer fail

 

murder on the orient express kenneth branagh michelle pfeiffer fail

 

murder on the orient express kenneth branagh michelle pfeiffer fail

 

 

Isn’t modern journalism great. (Copy and paste at your leisure.)

 

Posted: 17th, November 2017 | In: Celebrities, Film, News, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Ian Wright: Arsenal great was ‘bullied’ at Crystal Palace

Former Crystal Palace and Arsenal footballer Ian Wright is an ambassador for Cartoon Network’s anti-bullying campaign CN Buddy Network. Helping to promote the cause, Wright is telling media about his own experiences with bullies.

Alyson Rudd writes in the Times:

It is the silence that worries Ian Wright. The silence of those who suffer at the hands of bullies. The former England striker wants children who are picked on to speak up. If they keep their secrets they will, he says, find themselves suffering in the shadows.

We are introduced to Crystal Palace club captain Jim Cannon, there when Wright started out at the London club at the tender age of 21. In 2005, Cannon was part of Palace’s Centenary XI, losing the title “The Player of The Century” to – yep – Ian Wright.

“He was oppressive, a bully and he was nasty,” says Wright, who comes over as a resilient and engaging character. “He was threatened by me for some reason and I don’t know why. He was a horrible bully. It didn’t last long because once I started playing well, my confidence came and I didn’t feel that if I said anything they would let me go. When I told Steve Coppell [the manager] about it, he said he [Cannon] wouldn’t be around for long, that I should carry on doing what I was doing and stand up for myself.”

Cannon gets a right to reply. “I wasn’t a bully, he was just a loud-mouth upstart,” says the 64-year-old. “I was an experienced centre half and I knew he was going to come up against people worse than me so I gave him a little slap one day and that was the extent of the bullying. I’m not interested in Ian Wright, he was an exceptionally good player and if he thinks I bullied him maybe I bullied him into being a good player.”

Not altogether a bad point. For some individuals, being bullied can damage your confidence, leading to depression and isolation. For others, there can be less negative outcomes. It might be even positive, making the victim tougher, better able to navigate society and more self-aware. Professor Dennis Hayes, co-author of The Dangerous Rise Of Therapeutic Education, argues: “The more you talk about bullying, the more it sensitises people to every social slight and the more it becomes a problem.”

So, Wrighty, any more bullying? Wright recalls a lift home with another player, Micky Droy: “He never spoke to me in the car but he knew I needed a lift. It felt like a headmaster driving you home after being in trouble.”

Wright says that he does not know why Droy never spoke but that “deep down he was a good man and knew if he didn’t give me a lift I wasn’t getting home.”

This gives rise to the headlines:

 

ian wright bullying

 

Is bullying the right word? Wright’s experiences suggest a fraught adult relationship, perhaps one based on professional rivalry. Upsetting? Yes. Life-defining? No. If you look for toxic human relationships, surely you’ll find it in many places. How Wright’s story speaks to youngsters suffering abuse is moot. The story and cause seem to be all.

Posted: 16th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Sports | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Arsenal Balls: Wilshere signs new deal and heads to Spain in Sun clickbait tie-in

Transfer balls: Jack Wilshere, once the saviour of English football, is making his way back to the fore after a trying time with injuries. Having clawed his way back to the Arsenal bench, Wilshere is now being tipped to get his reward: a career at Real Betis.

Well, so says the BBC, which reasons that once Wilshere’s Arsenal contract expires in the summer, Betis are “confident” they will get their man and make him part of Spain’s eighth best side.

Over in the Sun, the story is given added oomph: “BET ON IT Arsenal news: Jack Wilshere set to leave the Emirates as Real Betis ‘believe they are close’ to signing England midfielder on a free.”

Only a loon would bet on Wishere heading to Real Betis. He wants to remain at Arsenal, and the Gunners are pretty keen on keeping him. The Sun’s “exclusive” looks a lot like an advertorial for its betting operation, SunBets. The paper’s scoop comes wrapped around two large calls for readers to sign up to SunBets .

It’s all utter balls. But in the race for clicks, where one news source leads, the other dutifully follow.

 

transfer balls arsenal

 

The Mirror and Mail both cite the Sun, which has no quotes and facts to support its story. At which point the story takes on a life of its own, with ESPN saying a deal is all but done (taking care to namecheck two big clubs for SEO purposes) – “Jack Wilshere set to spurn Premier League giants Chelsea and Manchester City for Real Betis” – and 90mins.com reading the player’s mind: “Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere Could be Interested in Joining Real Betis.”

But hold the bet! The Sun has more news:

 

Arsenal Wilshere the sun

 

Best save your money.

 

 

Posted: 16th, November 2017 | In: Arsenal, Back pages, News, Sports, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Josh Rivers: Gay Times editor’s only crime was to be unfunny

Josh Rivers Gay Times bigot tweets

 

Today’s hate figure is Josh Rovers, editor of Gay Times magazine, now suspended for tweeting things between 2010 and 2015.  Examples of Rivers’ tweets are many. One mocked women and the fat:

“I’ve just seen a girl in the tightest white tank & lord help me if she’s not pregnant, she should be killed. #gross.”

And, of course, there’s always the nastiness about Jews:

josh-rivers-jews are gross

And:

“I wonder if they cast that guy as ‘The Jew’ because of that fucking ridiculously larger honker of a nose. It must be prosthetic. Must be.”

In the Guardian LGBTQ rights campaigner Peter Tatchell is aghast: “His history of grossly offensive tweets is such a letdown. It undermines whatever good he was planning to achieve in the magazine.” Looks like equality rules: LGBT people can be every bit as nasty as the rest of us. Who knew?

Want some more examples of Rivers’ tweets? Of course you do. Here goes:

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

By way of background, it turns out that Rivers is not a person: he’s a walking box-ticking exercise. The Guardian notes that Rivers “is the first BME editor of a gay men’s magazine, and took on the role with a mandate to promote inclusivity and diversity.” And you thought he was just the best person for the job on account of his editing abilities and cutting-edge wit.

Outed and suspended from the post he only got in October, Rivers has issued an apology, the language of which might be a better reason than the lame tweets to dislike him:

 

 

The apology is terrific, isn’t it. It’s not about you, it’s about him. Josh, an arch narcissist, is now on a therapeutic journey, taking “steps” to self-discover a better him, to be the kind of wonderful person he truly is and knows he is. After guffing about “pivoting” and “empowering”, Rivers – he used to work in marketing, natch. – co-opts us all into his ugliness, hoping that “we” can “grow”, “heal” and move “forward”. It’s a journey. Get on the bus. You too, fatso.

But I’ll pass. I’m okay, Josh. You’re the berk, not me, the dick who thought it clever to make jokes about Jews, women, Asians and pretty much anyone not just like you.

Rivers’ sentiments expressed in his tweets are pathetic, puerile and horribly unfunny. He appears to be aiming at waspish humour, a snarky, offensive, live-it-loud gay laugh-in where anything goes. He fails miserably. Josh Rivers is not like his namesake Joan Rivers, the caustic, tough-talking American who wielded a comic stiletto with gusto and precision. Josh’s attempts at humour are every bit as wet as his name suggests. And he’s a fool. Rather than explaining it all as misplaced banter, stupidity, letting off steam and the result of his over-arching vanity, Rivers tells us that the tweets actually explain him, each presenting an insight into his mind. To wit, he was a racist, sexist, anti-Semitic misogynist. Those tweets weren’t just idiotic. They really meant something.

Let’s not trivialise Rivers’ tweets, but remind ourselves that Rivers has committed no crime. He’s apologised and that should be an end to the matter. He can hold the most abhorrent views on Jews, women, Asians and more but if he keeps them to himself, or else voices them to an audience more sympathetic to his prejudices – just as many of us have down in the privacy of our own homes and amongst friends – I’m fine with it. Shocked? Offended? “Oh, grow up!” as the aforesaid Joan advised.

Josh Rivers’ offence wasn’t to hold childish and nasty views; it was to voice them in the wrong context. Now, back to work. But time for a quick survey: anyone out there actually read Gay Times?

Posted: 16th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t count Israel among his Jew-hating ‘friends’

Corbyn anti-semitism

 

In 2015 then Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn went on the telly to explain why he addressed Islamist militant organisations Hamas and Hezbollah, a group that calls for the murder of all Jews,  as “friends”. (Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah opined: “If Jews all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.” Hamas states in its charter a mission to “fight the Jews and kill them”.)

Saying he met his “friends” Hamas in Lebanon and Hezbollah in this country and Lebanon, peacenik Corbyn told us: “What it means is that I think to bring about a peace process, you have to talk to people with whom you may profoundly disagree.”

Can this be the same Jeremy Corbyn, now leader of the Labour Party and with a decent shout of becoming Prime Minister, who called for an investigation into anti-Semitism in his Labour Party and found it squeaky clean (in much the same way a defecating bear cannot see the wood for the trees) and of whom the Sunday Times reported on October 29 2017:

Jeremy Corbyn has refused to attend an official dinner with the the country’s [Israel’s] prime minister this week to mark the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, which helped to pave the way for a Jewish nation state.

The Labour leader’s snub came as Israel’s ambassador to London told The Sunday Times that those who oppose the historic declaration are “extremists” who reject Israel’s right to exist and could be viewed on a par with terrorist groups such as Hamas…

The move is reminiscent of last month’s Labour Party conference in Brighton, where Corbyn avoided a Labour Friends of Israel reception attended by Regev.

So much for talking with people with whom you profoundly disagree…

Posted: 16th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Politicians | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The Guardian makes cracking error in dyslexia story

Dyslexia news in the Guardian, where the paper infamous for its typos relays news that dyslexia may be caused by the light-receptor cells in “the human eye”. Scientists noticed a difference between the arrangement of cones between the eyes of dyslexic and non-dyslexic people. Might it be that vision is linked to dyslexia?

In non-dyslexic people, the blue cone-free spot in one eye – the dominant one, was round and in the other eye unevenly shaped. In dyslexic people, both eyes have the same, round spot.

“The lack of asymmetry might be the biological and anatomical basis of reading and spelling disabilities,” said the study’s authors.

Interesting stuff. But dyslexics and non dyslexics alike can then work out what the hell the Guardian means when in its rehashed press releases, the news becomes:

 

The Guardian error dyslexia

 

 

Transcribed:

About 700 million people worldwide are known to have from dyslexia – about one in 10 of the global population.

There’s no helping some people…

Posted: 15th, November 2017 | In: Broadsheets, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Barbie gets an hijab in accordance with ‘diversity’

barbie hijab

 

There’s to be a Barbie doll based on US Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad, who became the first women who wear an hijab at the Olympics. According to Mattel, Muhammad is a “Shero”, which is bit like being a hero but for women; like heroine, yes, but the kind of portmanteau that makes for better branding and makes women a special case. So much for equality.

Sejal Shah Miller, Barbie’s vice president of global marketing, guffs out a statement: “Ibtihaj is an inspiration to countless girls who never saw themselves represented, and by honoring her story, we hope this doll reminds them that they can be and do anything,” It’s less about her than it is about us, say Mattel.

And as for girls’ ambitions, well they can’t do anything. NBC says Muhammad got into fencing because her mother likes the cover-all kit. “My mom just so happened to discover fencing,” says Muhammad on CNN. “She was driving past a local high school and saw kids with what she thought was like a helmet and like long pants and long jacket. She was like, ‘I don’t know what it is, but I want you to try it.”

So you can do anything, so long as you cover up. And don’t do it in Iran,where as one toy seller opined: “I think every Barbie doll is more harmful than an American missile.”

Whatever the backstory, the athlete is delighted, saying being immortalised in plastic is a “childhood dream come true”:

 

 

Cynics might argue that Mattel needs to broaden its appeal, and what easier way than by tapping into a new market, albeit the relatively small one of female Muslim fencers. CNN Money notes: “Barbie has been working hard to make its collection of dolls more diverse in an effort to broaden the brand’s appeal… Barbie’s sales have slumped, down 6% in the most recent quarter compared to last year.”

 

 

More people as dolls here. Each one an inspiration…

 

Posted: 15th, November 2017 | In: News, Sports, The Consumer | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Democracy wins: Australia says yes to gay marriage

same sex australia

 

Australians approve of gay marriage.  Australian voters gave a thumbs up to same-sex marriage, with 61.6% voting for and 31% voting against. Turn out for the postal vote was high: just shy of 79% of eligible voters (12 million people) took part in the voluntary referendum.

Voters were asked to reply Yes or No response to the question: “Should the marriage law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”

It is another triumph for democracy. The people have had their say. Now get on with it.

Posted: 15th, November 2017 | In: News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Tabloids zoom in on ‘ashen-faced’ Gareth Bale

News that Gareth Bale’s “bother-in-law” has died is surely a shock for his loved ones. The Mail says Real Madrid and Wales footballer Bale and his fiancee Emma have been left “devastated” by a “suspected family suicide”. Emma’s sister’s partner Alexander Williams has been found dead.

Tastefully, the paper buys paparazzi photos to best illustrate Bale’s pain.

 

 

The Mirror is not far off invading Bale’s grief, using the same photo to ooze: “Real Madrid star Gareth Bale looks pained s he turns up for training after shock family death”.

 

 

Pathetic stuff.

And worth revisiting the Mail’s pledge of 8 September 1997, eight days after the death of Princess Diana:

“Mail leads the way in banning paparazzi pictures.

“Mail leads the way in banning paparazzi pictures.” Here are the opening paragraphs to the article below that heading:

“The proprietor of the Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday and Evening Standard announced last night that his papers will not in future purchase pictures taken by paparazzi

Viscount Rothermere, chairman of the Daily Mail and General Trust plc said: ‘I am, and always have been, an admirer of Diana, Princess of Wales, and nagged my editors to protect her so far as they could against her powerful enemies.

In view of Earl Spencer’s strong words and my own sense of outrage, I have instructed my editors no ‘paparazzi’ pictures are to be purchased without my knowledge and consent.'”

Plus ca change, as they say in Paris, Madrid, London…

Posted: 14th, November 2017 | In: News, Sports | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Clickbait balls: Liverpool ‘favourites’ to sign Barcelona Mascherano in a market of one

Transfer balls spots this gem in the Daily Mirror’s desperate clickbait factory: “Liverpool favourites to sign Barcelona star in January transfer window.”

To reach this story, readers vault no fewer than three video adverts. The story is squashed between them:

 

skybet daily mirror

 

 

daily mirror liverpool

 

The entire scoop is an exercise in total balls:

Liverpool have been made favourites to sign Barcelona star Javier Mascherano in January.

Ah, him. Is he still any good? Does he want to rejoin Liverpool? Who else wants him?

Mascherano’s contract at Barcelona is less than two years to run and he is understood to be considering an early exit.

Understood by whom? Dunno. The Mirror doesn’t bother to say. But it does note:

Liverpool have been made 6/4 favourites to sign him by Sky Bet, although River Plate are another option for the 33-year-old.

Why SkyBet have odds on Mascherano is not stated, nor how large the market on the move is. Although it is fun to see the Mirror plugging its rival – SkyBet is operated by the Sun’s owners. Once upon a time both red-tops were fierce rivals seeking out scoops and shockers – now they exist to fluff each other’s guff and get readers to bet on total nonsense.

We called SkyBet and were told that the bet does exist. And because it’s a ‘Special Bet’ or a ‘Request A Bet’ the odds can be triggered by one person requesting odds. Make the request and look back in wonder as your simple question makes it on to the pages of the self-declared”Intelligent Tabloid”.

The full odds are hereunder:

 

 

Since the Mirror published its story, the odds have not changed, which implies the market for Mascherano to Liverpool is no larger than a PR’s chequebook?

 

Posted: 14th, November 2017 | In: Arsenal, Money, News, Sports, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Arsenal Balls: The changing styles of Arsene Wenger

It looks like being another season of barely held together crisis for Arsenal – just for a change, writes Sunil Singh. 

After winning the FA Cup again in May, Wenger should probably have walked away from the job he has held for more than 20 years.

Instead, Wenger signed a two-year contract to extend his stay at the Emirates and Arsenal’s start to the season has been typically predictable.

After a rollicking 4-3 home win against Leicester City got the new Premier League season off to a flyer, Arsenal promptly lost back-to-back away games at Stoke City and Liverpool, the latter a humiliating 4-0 hammering.

A run of four clean sheets in a row in the league, with 10 points taken from those games, suggested Arsenal could have turned a corner. But Arsenal were too Arsenal-y for that.

Leading at Watford last weekend, they collapsed to a 2-1 loss at Vicarage Road and sit sixth in the table as a result – level on points with Burnley, of all teams.

But can we predict Arsenal’s twists and turns via Wenger’s wardrobe? Let’s give it a go!

The coat – an investigation

We have to start with Arsene’s coat, of course. It is arguably the most iconic piece of manager-wear of the Premier League era.

The sight of Wenger, ordinarily a very dapper man – he is French, after all – struggling to do up the zip on his jacket is a familiar one to all football fans. It’s a cliche these days.

Wenger’s coat in the 2014-15 Premier League season was a beauty. So long it would swallow a man of normal height hour, it billowed down below Wenger’s knees.

And he couldn’t do it up. Every game, it seemed, the television cameras would capture him grappling with the zip as his team fell apart in front of him. It was all too easy to draw a parallel.

The coat looked great, but it didn’t really work – or at least Wenger couldn’t get it to work. Just like this team, it was almost perfect. But not quite.

What Wenger’s coat says about him

Manager style is going through a big change in the Premier League right now.

While it used to be Wenger who brought massive innovations to English football – like eating right – now it is a new foreign influence who is educating us all over again.

Pep Guardiola sports trainers on the touchline, often with chinos and a nice v-neck jumper. It’s pure style – just like his Manchester City team.

Another manager has seen his fashion choices pored over in recent weeks – Antonio Conte.

The Italian donned stunning suits for most of last season as Chelsea romped to the Premier League title in his first season at Stamford Bridge.

But Conte appeared on the sideline for the first game of his side’s title defence in a shabby club tracksuit – with his team looking similarly out of sorts.

Burnley turned Chelsea over that day, running out 3-2 winners in a game that saw two of Conte’s players sent off. It is impossible to argue that the defeat was solely down to Conte ditching his suit for trackies, but it might well have been a small factor, at least.

How a manager dresses says a lot about him. To Wenger, his coat is all about function. It looks a bit naff, but it keeps him warm. It does the job just about well enough.

But when it doesn’t do the job – when he fumbles with the zip yet again – it makes you wonder why Wenger does not ditch it and upgrade for a better model. Just like his midfield.

Ryan, the editor of a highly respected online publication had this to say, “Wenger used to be a favourite of ours here at Gamblingkingz, but these days he is a relic that the Premier League could certainly do without. And the bookmakers feel the same way. While Arsenal used to be perennial title contenders under his leadership – with the odds reflecting that – now they are also-rans.”

How the other Premier League managers compare

In hindsight, Frank de Boer was always destined to fail when he was appointed at Crystal Palace as the replacement for Sam Allardyce after his shock departure.

De Boer rocked a blue blazer and cream chinos on the sidelines as he watched his Palace side struggling to get to grips with his Total Football style. It just wasn’t a good fit.

Mauricio Pellegrino also does not look quite right in his ‘athleisure’ gear consisting of a polo top and tracksuit bottoms. The colours of his club-branded gear make him look more like a Sainsbury’s assistant manager than the boss of a Premier League football club.

Some managers can pull off the casual look however, with Tony Pulis certainly among them.

The Welshman’s baseball cap is up there with Wenger’s billowing coat as one of the most iconic clothing items in Premier League history.

Pulis is rarely seen without it, pairing the hat with a tracksuit despite him approaching his 60s.

Another tracksuit boss is Jurgen Klopp. He is always in Liverpool-branded gear, giving the impression he is a manager who likes to get stuck in on the training ground. The defending of his team suggests otherwise, however.

Eddie Howe is a fan of the tracksuit too. The Bournemouth boss is so young – still somehow just 39! – that he probably would look like a child dressing up in his dad’s clothes if he wore a suit.

What about Jose Mourinho? Wenger’s old rival is not afraid to rock a tracksuit but he is usually smart in a suit on the touchline.

Opposition fans used to sing “that coat’s from Matalan” at Mourinho earlier in his career, but there is no doubt the United manager is one of the best dressed coaches in the league now.

Mauricio Pellegrino switches between the suit and the tracksuit as well – and he is one of the few Premier League managers who both looks comfortable in either outfit and pulls it off.

Some managers don’t quite suit the style of their team – Burnley’s Sean Dyche, for example. While he is never seen out of a dark suit, his team is much more rough round the edges.

Dyche’s smart style, of course, continues to make him look even more like a nightclub bouncer than his scary face and voice suggest.

So what can Wenger learn from his peers? Ultimately it doesn’t matter. Wenger has shown time and time again he has no interest in learning from anyone else. It’s his way or nothing.

Even if Wenger’s way is a ludicrously long coat that he can’t do up.

Posted: 14th, November 2017 | In: Arsenal, News, Sports | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Paramedics attacked by idiots but it’s not worse than death

paramedics note

 

Paramedics do a testing job in trying circumstances for not all that much cash. But not everyone appreciates their efforts. While they treated a dying man in Small Heath, Birmingham, Hassan Shabbir Ali, 27, placed a note on the windscreen of their ambulance. It read: “You may be saving lives but don’t park your van in a stupid place and block my drive.”

Life goes on. The dead make room for the living; but paramedics make way for no-one.

Mr Ali has apologised for his crass note, which he wrote after being blocked for 20 minutes. Fair enough. But West Midlands Ambulance Service’s John Hagans says the note made the man’s family feel “50 times worse” over his death. Really?

 

paramedics note

Another note.

 

The ambulance service has released the note and a video of  Colin Anderson, 50, telling a paramedic treating a patient in Runcorn, Cheshire, to “do you fucking job properly” and labelled her a “fucking idiot” for blocking his work van. Anderson has also apologised, saying he has the “utmost respect” for paramedics.

GMB union officer Paul Turner, 35, says of that incident, filmed by a local man: “This is just one incident that’s been videoed, and that’s probably happening a dozen times a day.”

 

 

PS: Beneath the video on YouTube,one bleeding heart opines:

CH1LDOFTHEMOON: “You just got to hope that that guy has a car accident and need`s an ambulance and someone like him will give the ambulance crew a hard time, and the guy suffer`s for it!”

Because if there’ one thing we love more than ambulance staff, it’s wishing harm on other people.

 

Posted: 14th, November 2017 | In: News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Prince Charles has Jewish ‘friends’ but they’re all self-serving lobbyists

Jews Prince Charles letter IsraelIn 1986, Prince Charles penned a letter to his pal Laurens van der Post. In it he bemoaned the “Jewish lobby” and the state of the State of Israel. None of what you are about to read suggests Charles is, like some of his fellow toffs in harbouring an intense dislike of Jews. Indeed, the Mail, which publishes the story of Charles’ letter, tells readers: “He has many prominent Jewish friends and in 2013 became the first Royal to attend a chief rabbi’s inauguration ceremony. In a speech that year, he expressed concern at the apparent rise of anti-Semitism in Britain.”

Off hand, I couldn’t name any of Charles’ Jewish pals, and scouring pictures of the perpetual heir to the throne’s skiing hols and shooting jaunts, I’m unable pick out any Jews in the happy throng. Although rumours abound that he did one fancy Barbara Streisand.

The paper also notes, “Charles has always enjoyed a close and supportive relationship with the Jewish community in Britain”. What the Jewish community is can be hard to define, but most often in community matters, it amounts to a few well-appointed, pushy knobs and knobesses serving to represent anyone and everyone who shares their faith, religion or skin tones. It’s a handy shortcut that saves on gentile shoe leather and hand sanitisers.

And so it is that Charles – not a Jew hater – writes:

‘Tried to read bit of Koran on way out and it gave me some insight into way they [Arabs] think and operate. Don’t think they could understand us through reading Bible though!”

Well, so long as you read one of the good bits, understanding an ancient religion need cost you no more than a copy of York Notes. Charles looks up from the text that consumed minutes of his busy day and continues:

 “I now appreciate that Arabs and Jews were all a Semitic people originally and it is the influx of foreign, European Jews (especially from Poland, they say) which has helped to cause great problems. I know there are so many complex issues, but how can there ever be an end to terrorism unless the causes are eliminated? Surely some U.S. president has to have the courage to stand up and take on the Jewish lobby in U.S.? I must be naive, I suppose!”

“Incendiary,” says the Mail. And it is odd. Was it not the Jews returning to their God-given homeland after being forced to ‘wander’ for eons, taking in lands such as Poland where they were punished for BWJ (breathing while Jewish) with State-sanctioned murder? Was Israel not their birthright, taken from them by enemies that caused them to suffer? Can we include some of Charles’ ancestors in the list of Crusading angels who caused Jews to wander into Nazi death camps in German-occupied Poland?

As for the Jewish lobby, what is that? It’s an old anti-semitic trope of a Jewish cabal running the world for their own advantage. You can be black, white, male, female, transgender, disabled, a peacenik, a veteran or whatever, but if you are a Jew, then in the eyes of Charles your campaign is driven by Jewish self-interest. It’s echoed throughout society, alluded to by the likes of Richard Ingram, who wrote in the Guardian: “I have developed a habit when confronted by letters to the editor in support of the Israeli government to look at the signature to see if the writer has a Jewish name. If so, I tend not to read it.”

So much for the deserving Jews, one big shadowy mass of group-think. But what of the royals, specifically the blood and oil-socked kings who rule with an iron fist over many Arabs? Well, Charles rather likes them.

“Much admire some aspects of Islam,” says Charles to his Afrikaans friend. “Especially accent on hospitality and accessibility of rulers.” When they’re not booting out Jews, those Arab toffs are tops. Julie Raven nails him:

He likes Islam because monarchs aren’t answerable for the vilely hypocritical lives they lead (the drinking and whoring of Muslim monarchs compared to the treatment meted out to their subjects who indulge) and because they can divorce at their whim with no comeback. The very worst and weakest Western men are attracted by Islam – he’s no exception.

This is Charles who on Mar. 21, 2006 weighed in on the Muhammad cartoon controversy, telling an audience of more than 800 Islamic scholars at Cairo’s Al-Azhar University: The recent ghastly strife and anger over the Danish cartoons shows the danger that comes of our failure to listen and to respect what is precious and sacred to others.” No, not freedom of expression, a cornerstone of our democratic right. He didn’t mean that. Charles is all for the sanctity of theocratic Islam, which abhors our hard-won freedoms, stymies womanhood and raises monarchs to the pantheon of living gods. That’s what righteous Charles wants defending: the powerful.

Charles is a weak and feckless sort, a man searching for a legacy but failing to find a purpose.  He’s exactly the type of right-on plodder who eventually reasons that the main cause of trouble are Jews. To wit it’s worth reminding him that his son and heir is married to Kate, of whom Iran’s Mehr News Agency warns:

“This lady’s family roots show that she is considered a Sephardic Jew from her mother’s side. Moreover the timing of the wedding and the way it was held which was based on Jewish culture verify the evidences. William’s marriage as the inheritor of the crown to a Jewish girl will leave the future of Britain to the hands of the couple’s Jewish children.” *

Yeah. They got you Charles. They got you good…

 

 

Posted: 13th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Royal Family | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Brexit Balls: Irish cheese panic

More fine anti-Brexit work in the The Guardian, where news is that people who eat non-organic butter and hum-drum Irish cheddar are going to be worst off once the country quits the EU:

Leaving the customs union in a hard Brexit scenario could lead to the price of meat doubling and the price of dairy, half of which is imported, rising by up to 50%.

How so?

A block of cheddar imported from Ireland that costs £1 now will cost £1.41 under World Trade Organisation rules, with Ireland being a major producer of cheddar. This would prompt a vicious economical cycle and a period of “runaway” food price hikes, he warned.

The quoted “he” is Gabriel D’Arcy, chief executive of dairy producers LacPatrick in Strabane in Northern Ireland. In May Mr D’Arcy said LacPatrick “had seen a 25pc surge in its sales into the British market in the wake of Brexit, due to its presence in Northern Ireland”. Not all doom and gloom, then.

And as for the Guardian’s words on WTO, well, the quoted price hike represents the maximum import tariffs, so-called ‘ceiling rates’ on ‘bound rates’ . You can charge less through ‘applied rates’. The Government could go further and charge no tariffs (aka tax), and make the populace’ richer’ by allowing them to keep more cash in their pockets by way of cheaper cheese.

No need to panic, then, and dash out to buy lots of Irish cheese. Guardian readers, of course, can stick with their runny brie.

Posted: 13th, November 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Money, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Roy Moore accused of molesting shellfish

sex Clams headline

 

Big news from Alabama, where the Republican Party is embroiled in a “sex clams” scandal involving local politician and judge Roy Moore. Moore’s campaign for the US Sensate is infected by allegations that he molested 14-year-old Leigh Corfman (now 53) and three other teens when he was in his thirties.

“This is one of those excruciating decision moments for evangelicals,” Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. “These allegations, if true, are devastating. If true, this is a very big deal.”

If true. Moore denies any wrongdoing. Corfman stands by her story. The clams are not talking.

The Times Daily regrets the error.

 

 

Posted: 13th, November 2017 | In: News, Politicians, Strange But True | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Theresa May and Boris Johnson hang Priti Patel out to dry

Priti Patel (Tory MP, Brexiteer and International Development Secretary) is mired. And some people are pleased.

George Osborne (former Tory MP and arch-Remianer) uses his editorship on the London Evening Standard to report that thousands of people logged on to a website to track Patel’s flying back from Uganda. “Priti Patel’s ‘flight back to London’ tracked by tens of thousands of people as she faces Cabinet axe,” trumpets the paper. BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg says Patel’s sacking seemed “almost inevitable now”. Adding: “If May doesn’t sack her now it’s an ongoing sore that smacks of weakness.”

The furore is over Patel’s meetings with Israeli officials in August. Patel attended 12 meetings in 12 days, including one with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Under the terms of protocol, she was supposed to tell the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The meetings were organised by Conservative Friends of Israel honorary president Lord Polak, who accompanied her to all but one of them.

Israeli newspaper Haaretz says that while on her hols Patel visited an Israeli military field hospital in the Golan Heights – the land seized from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War. The idea was for Israeli medics to treat Syrian refugees. “Officials,” says the BBC, rejected her idea as “inappropriate”. (The views of the wounded and bereft who risked life and limb to flee the barbarity of ISIS and Assad are unknown.)

Prime Minister Theresa May’s spokesman tells us: “The Secretary of State did discuss potential ways to provide medical support for Syrian refugees who are wounded and who cross into the Golan for aid. The Israeli army runs field hospitals there to care for Syrians wounded in the civil war. But there is no change in policy in the area. The UK does not provide any financial support to the Israeli army.”

Says Patel:

“This summer I travelled to Israel, on a family holiday paid for myself. While away I had the opportunity to meet a number of people and organisations. I am publishing a list of who I met.‎ The Foreign and Commonwealth Office was aware of my visit while it was underway‎.

“In hindsight, I can see how my enthusiasm to engage in this way could be mis-read, and how meetings were set up and reported in a way which did not accord with the usual procedures. I am sorry for this and I apologise for it.

The Jewish Chronicle has more. It says: “Number 10 instructed… Patel not to include her meeting with the Israel foreign ministry official Yuval Rotem in New York on 18 September in her list of undisclosed meetings with Israelis… [A meeting Rotem broadcasts on social media]. But the JC understands, from two different sources, that Ms Patel did disclose the meeting with Mr Rotem but was told by Number 10 not to include it as it would embarrass the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. In addition, the JC can reveal that although Ms Patel’s meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was not authorised in advance, the British government was made aware of it within hours.”

The paper’s Stephen Pollard then gets a scoop:

Today Number Ten confirmed that it had only found out this morning about her plan to hand some British aid money over to the Israelis to use as part of their (legendarily good) aid missions.

It had no idea. And then you get to wonder what part Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, plays in all this:

But this puzzles me. Well before last week’s James Landale scoop about Ms Patel’s meetings with Israeli politicians, I was told very matter of factly that there would soon be an announcement of cooperation between the UK and Israel over aid in Africa – that we would divert some of our aid money to the Israelis to fund some of their aid work there.

I was told that it had been signed off between DfID and Number Ten, but that the FCO had kicked off because it felt its toes were being trodden on.

In which case, it’s not Patel who should go; it’s May.

 

Posted: 8th, November 2017 | In: News, Politicians | Comments (2) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0