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We know all about Donald Trump and TV host Billy Bush sharing a “locked-room” chat during which the tsunami-haired bricks-and-golf tycoon advised randy males to “Grab her by the pussy“? But why are we hearing about this now?
Is Trump’s exposure linked to media bias? Rupert Murdoch’s Heat Street says NBC is part of the problem:
More to the point, why hasn’t all this terrible audio already surfaced? At any point in the last year, when there was still time to deprive Trump of the GOP nomination, did NBC brass ask Apprentice producer (and Trump friend) Mark Burnett for a look into his archives? Or were they complicit in allowing Trump to cruise to the GOP nomination when they knew there was likely evidence in Mark Burnett’s basement that could disqualify him?
Reality TV is a cut and paste job. The amount of stuff edited out would fill a silo. But is it right to blame the messenger? The Mail has been blaming the victim.
There are clear lines of accountability here – to NBC News Chairman Andy Lack and NBCU CEO Steve Burke. Did these executives just look the other way for many months while a former employee whose bad behavior was well-known got closer and closer to the White House? And did they place the career of Billy Bush – reportedly being groomed to replace Matt Lauer on the hugely profitable Today program – ahead of the US presidency? That sounds absurd, but this is the twisted world of network television and NBC has some explaining to do.
The Guardian 2008: “Another casualty of the internet age: Obama’s speechwriter is caught in a compromising position with a cardboard Hillary.”
NBCNighty News host Brian Williams “misremembered” being aboard a helicopter hit and downed by two rockets and small arms fire fire during the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Williams had been on a different Chinook. “I would not have chosen to make this mistake,” Williams said. “I don’t know what screwed up in my mind that caused me to conflate one aircraft with another.”
People at NBC are fallible. People make mistakes in wartime.
Glenn Reynolds adds:
HE WAS A DEMOCRAT WHEN HE MADE THOSE REMARKS, SO IT WAS OKAY. IT’S ONLY WHEN HE SWITCHED PARTIES AND BECAME GOP NOMINEE THAT THE REMARKS TURNED DISGRACEFUL.
Back then he wasn’t in or standing for public office.
“It became a problem when the tail grew outside the body,” said the 14-year-old boy’s mother, who doesn’t want to be named.
“He would just lift the [8-inch] tail every time he needed to change his clothes. I could see that it was very annoying and painful for him, so I took him to a hospital.” Doctors say the teenager might have developed the tail in the womb as a result of a spinal deformity, but that it appeared outside only after he grew up.
“When the size of the tail grew… [it] began to press on the boy’s back,” says surgeon, Dr Pramod Giri. “It was cosmetically and psychologically disturbing for him.”
How do we tell the story of reality TV star Donald Trump telling gibbering TV host Billy Bush “Grab her by the pussy“? The British news has made Trump’s “crass” comment (Express) the lead news story. Bigger than mass murder in Syria, desperate migrants and bellicose Russia is Trump’s “sex boast” (The Observer).
The Mirror looks at more pressing issues.
Trump is a story. The reality TV creation is news because he’s said something pathetic and is cheap to produce.
But should one comment scupper Trump’s White House bid?
Nick Kristoff opines in the NYTimes: “In fairness to Trump, other senior men in politics and business — John Kennedy and Bill Clinton come to mind — also sometimes showed a sense of entitlement toward young women.”
The digging for dirt begins.
Said Gennifer Flowers: “I just know what Bill told me and that was that he was aware that Hillary was bisexual and he didn’t care. He should know. ‘He said Hillary had eaten more p***y than he had.’”
In the Washington Post, we read:
Trump, facing a GOP exodus from his campaign and apparently desperate to change the subject, just retweeted two tweets from an account featuring the name of Juanita Broaddrick, the woman who publicly alleged in 1999 that Clinton had sexually assaulted her two decades prior. In both tweets, the Broaddrick account reiterates her accusation that Clinton raped her and accuses Hillary Clinton of enabling him.
Then, the country was presented with proof, incremental and suggestive at first, overwhelming and indisputable by the end of the decade, that Bill Clinton was an irrepressible and irresponsible sexual predator, at least by the moral and evidentiary standards established by feminist activists and the press corps that loves them. And, rather than face the consequences of applying their own principles consistently, they prostrated themselves to the Oval Office. Gloria Steinem raced to the pages of the New York Times to advance the “one free grope” rule. Susan Estrich, Susan Faludi, and countless other professional feminists defenestrated their principles in a desperate attempt to defend Clinton.
And can we blame the woman seen in the film when Trump went full frat house?
To the Mail it is not Trump’s ugly comment that could cost him the White House – it is elegant TV soap actress Arianne Zucker, a woman who diplomatically dealt with TV host Billy Bragg’s pathetic comments as to which of he or Trump she’d sleep with.
The obsession with Trump, the close monitoring of his every utterance, has reached the point that his political and media foes have – ironically – become important generators of support for him. Every time they tell Trump ‘you can’t say that’, he says it. Every time they demand an apology from Trump, he doubles down on it. Just by defying the strictures of political correctness, and not caving when challenged, Trump can look authoritative and daring.
We keep reading that Republicans have deserted Trump. Will his supporters care? No. Trump has turned the election into a referendum on the political establishment. Clinton should be miles ahead in the polls. Why isn’t she? Seen as untrustworthy by many, her policies should be more than ‘I’m not Trump’. Remember Bernie Sanders, who said failing to vote Hillary will lead to “more drought, more floods, more acidification of the oceans, more rising sea levels.”
The Republican nominee Donald Trump spoke for 75 minutes and for most of his speech, he outlined a laundry list of every conceivable fear he could conjure. Radical Islam, immigration (legal, illegal, Mexican, Muslim, whatevs), stagnant wages, rising violence in the streets, and really terrible trade deals were among the litany.
The US Presidential campaign has a long way to run.
And like so much in Trump and Clinton’s lives, it is a race to the bottom.
WikiLeaks has released bits of speeches Hillary Clinton gave in the years before her 2016 presidential campaign. It was a lucrative tour. Private audiences paid her “at least $26.1 million in speaking fees”.
We get to see the speeches because versions of them appeared in emails now hacked, such as an account operated by Campaign Chairman John Podesta.
We love a cover up. But if we don’t find any juice, then so what? Aren’t private emails part of everyday conversations – some things we say are good and others less so. Do emails give us the full context?
Meanwhile Clinton’s rival Donald Trumps is in the mire over his attitudes to women, what the BBC calls “obscene remarks on women”.
In the video, posted by the Washington Post, Mr Trump is heard bragging to TV host Billy Bush about trying to have sex with a married woman as well as kissing and groping others.
A clip was part of unaired footage for an Access Hollywood segment ahead of Mr Trump’s appearance on the soap opera Days of Our Lives.
“I moved on her and I failed. I’ll admit it. She was married. And I moved on her very heavily. I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phoney tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”
He then says when he sees a pretty woman he hones in.
Bush notes actress Arianne Zucker, who’s waiting for Trump outside the bus. “Your girl’s hot as s***, in the purple,” Bush said.
“Whoa!” Trump replied. “Whoa!”
“I’ve gotta use some Tic-Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump continued. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything.”
“Whatever you want,” said another voice believed to be Bush.
“Grab them by the pussy,” Trump replied. “You can do anything.”
All unedifying stuff. But what do we have but Clinton talking to the paying fans and what Trump calls “locker-room banter”?
Listen in. Language is NSFW. Trump is revolting. Bush is sleaze personified.
Trump has now apologised. Well, sort of. He said: “This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago. Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course – not even close. I apologize if anyone was offended.”
His apology is not for his comments rather for your taking offence at them. It’s a remarkably dishonest approach to saying ‘sorry’.
Expert to hear lots now on Bill Clinton’s attitude to women and Jill Harth, the woman who sued Trump over an alleged sexual assault. The Guardian dished the dirt:
She first met Trump in December 1992 at his offices in Trump Tower, where she and her then romantic partner, George Houraney, were making a business presentation. The couple wanted to recruit Trump to back their American Dream festival, in which Harth oversaw a pin-up competition known as American Dream Calendar Girls. Harth described that meeting as “the highlight of our career”.
But in other ways, it was something of a lowlight: Trump took an interest in Harth immediately and began subjecting her to a steady string of unwanted sexual advances, detailed by Harth in her complaint.
She claims that in January 1993, Harth and Houraney were visiting Trump’s Florida mansion. She alleges:
“He pushed me up against the wall, and had his hands all over me and tried to get up my dress again, and I had to physically say: ‘What are you doing? Stop it.’ It was a shocking thing to have him do this because he knew I was with George, he knew they were in the next room. And how could he be doing this when I’m there for business?…
“Trump did everything in his power to get me to leave him. He constantly called me and said: ‘I love you, baby, I’m going to be the best lover you ever had. What are you doing with that loser, you need to be with me, you need to step it up to the big leagues.’
“He was constantly working on me during that time and that took a toll on me. But I moved on. I’m a forgiving type person, OK? I’m a Christian, I moved on.”
He denies the allegations.
America waits to elect one or the other of what must be the least appealing choice since Michael Barrymore asked “Top, Middle or Bottom?”
Emma Phillips, Wallasey, Wirral, is the trainee teacher who got a large dildo stuck in her anus (?). This is no secret. Emma has not been exposed or outed in some way. She wants to tell us all about her “embarrassing” accident because it is a “taboo” we need to be warned about.
She’s told her story to Mercury Press, who have sold it to the Daily Mirror. How you prove the story of the vanishing viby is a moot point. Emma just wants to tell us about it. And we are all ears.
And no giggling as “Emma offers a thumbs up from her hospital bed”. Let’s hope she washes it first and removed any false fingernails.
One day her child will get to read about the tale of “Mum-of-one Emma Phillips”, her partner Lee Miller, 29, and the the 7 inch sex toy that “disappeared”.
When she leaned forward she could feel it vibrating inside her bottom wedged behind her hip.
Lee tried to extract the toy with a fork handle and BBQ prongs before calling for an ambulance.
In Wrexham hospital Emma underwent the “minute-and-a-half surgery which involved placing a camera down her throat and the surgeon pressing on her stomach before manually extracting i”.
And “Doctors offered her the toy as a keepsake but she decline”.
UKIP sources insist that condemnation of the alleged fight between UKIP MEPs Stephen Woolfe and Mike Hookem is unwarranted.
“We regret that a heated debate ended with one man seriously ill in hospital,” says a UKIP source, “but it just shows how UKIP is standing shoulder to shoulder with US Presidential hopeful Donald Trump. When Mr Trump courted the terminally ill vote but telling them ‘I don’t care how sick you are, vote for me if it’s the last thing you do’ – which it might very well be – Stephen was doing his bit to support a man endorsed by UKIP leader Nigel Farage.
“He now understands that being unconscious or in a coma presents unforeseen challenges to voting in any election, not least of all the the US Presidential race, what with Stephen not being a US citizen and failing to register as such in time.”
It is, puns the Times, “a dramatic blow to UKIP’s reputation”. In Strasbourg, Steven Woolfe, a North West MEP, collapsed at the European parliament after an alleged row with Mike Hookem – nominative determinism? – who represents Yorkshire and the Humber. Mr Hookem, the party’s defence (!) spokesman, “raised allegations that Mr Woolfe was planning to defect to the Tories”. That would be an odd move for Woolfe, who wants to be UKIP leader, a role open once more since Diana James quit after just 18 days in the job.
Two hours after the row Woolfe suffered two “epileptic-like” fits and passed out. He is now “feeling brighter, happier and smiling as ever”.
Nigel Farage, the acting party leader, says it was a “dispute that finished up physically”. It “shouldn’t have happened”.
So what did happen?
“Sources” are making claims all over the media.
Source 1: Mr Hookem called Mr Woolfe a joke and the two men began shouting.
Source 2: Mr Woolfe removed his jacket and said he had had enough and wanted to settle the matter outside.
Source 3: Party insiders tell The Telegraph that Mr Woolfe was punched by a UKIP colleague following an altercation.
Source 4: ‘The Daily Telegraph understands that Mr Woolfe is suffering from bleeding of the brain after he was punched. One witness said he fell into a window after being punched.”
Source 5: Woofe claims Hookem lost his temper and pushed him into a door frame.
Source 6 (Labour): The Jews did it.
The good news is that Mr Woolfe has no bleeding on the brain.
Liz Jones, a member of the Ukip national executive committee, adds: “If there’s been an altercation, a fist-fight — and not that I’m saying that happened — but if there has been aggression from both sides, there is a possibility that both could be suspended.”
Farage adds: “I don’t think that a political party can have an incident like this without having a look at it. I don’t see any need for the police to be involved, there are no complaints. Somehow I doubt people will be suspended. “I won’t be on the inquiry myself. I suspect it will blow over and be looked back upon as one of these things that happens between men.”
Nigel Farage again: “I deeply regret that following an altercation that took place at a meeting of MEPs this morning that Steven Woolfe subsequently collapsed and was taken to hospital. His condition is serious.”
Open Culture has a great post on French philosopher Michel Foucault (1926-1984), who lectured in English at UC Berkeley, delivering several lectures in English. And we can listen to everything this heavyweight in the filed of humanities said.
It might do you some good. After all, as he put it, power is knowledge. And power is omnipresent.
This from Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (Surveiller et Punir: Naissance de la Prison): “It is not the activity of the subject of knowledge that produces a corpus of knowledge, useful or resistant to power, but power-knowledge, the processes and struggles that traverse it and of which it is made up, that determines the forms and possible domains of knowledge.”
What old or, to use the Sun’s terminology, stale Maddie scandal? The only thing we know is that a child vanished and the news media launched into a voracious feeding frenzy. There are no suspects. In fact, police have yet to prove what crime, if any, befell her.
The Sun continues: “Ex-cop who accused McCann’s of faking Maddie’s abduction plans second book slamming Brit cops.”
The former policeman in Goncalo Amaral. His theories are just theories. His writing a second book is not a scandal; it’s pretty much what best-selling authors so when their first book has been a hit. They write a sequel. The writer will be pleased the Sun is advertising his tome:
Goncalo Amaral has almost finished his second book, but although it is expected to centre around the 2008 disappearance of Maddie in Algarave, Portugal, it is unclear what details the author will release.
Details? Who needs details? We do get a few facts about his past work:
The 56-year-old author previously wrote The Truth Of The Lie in 2008, which accused her parents Kate and Gerry McCann of faking Maddie’s abduction. But the couple have previously been left reeling after having their £395,000 libel victory revoked by Lisbon appeal judges who overturned a ban on his book in April.
To add insult to injury, Amaral also is planning to sue the couple for compensation after winning his appeal.
We learn that writing about a missing child pays handsomely:
Amaral is understood to have earned £316,000 from his book before it was banned.
According to a source, the ex-police chief has been getting help from friends and well-wishers to survive as all of his property is “tied up” legally during the civil action with the McCanns.
All unpleasant stuff.
As for the facts, well that is a single thread. Nothing has changed. Nonetheless the Sun sees fit to hold one end and repeat:
Maddie went missing on May 3 2007 from her bed in a holiday apartment in the Praia da Luz resort…
With no news of Madeleine McCann, the Mail focuses on no news of missing Ben Needham. The paper’s headline runs:
The worst thing imaginable’: Kate McCann says her ‘heart goes out’ to Ben Needham’s mother as Kerry prepares for the worst while police in Kos dig SECOND site
The worst thing imaginable, we learn, is to have police dig for your missing child’s remains. The Press lap up the drama. Note that this is different from the tabloids’ “every parent’s worst nightmare”, which is for your child to vanish.
The Mail reports this as news because “a close friend of the former GP told MailOnline: ‘This brings back dreadful memories for Kate. She went through a similar horrendous experience a few years back when the authorities were digging for Madeleine. Not knowing if they are going to unearth the remains of your child as you wait helplessly is the worst thing imaginable. It is galling.
Kate’s says her heart goes out to Kerry Needham at such a traumatic time. She is very sympathetic and wants to offer her strength and solidarity. They have met up in the past as fellow mums of high profile missing children and share a seemingly never ending pain and anguish.”
Ben Needham and Madeleine McCann are two distinct stories and cases. They are both names tabloid readers are familiar with. Why? Well, there are rare cases. But are high profile missing children always very young, white and blond. Are we that shallow? Andrew Godsen, 14, went missing in 2007. Charlene Downes was 14 when she vanished. Aamina Khan was 6 when she went missing in 2011. She vanished with her mother Humma Dar after her father was given custody.
While her disappearance is no doubt a huge tragedy, we have to wonder why it is Madeleine McCann, a pretty white girl, who has captured the sympathy of the public, and not girls with names like Aamina Khan, Elizabeth Ogungbayibi, or Folawiyo Oladejo.
Which ones sell the most papers? Which ones get the tourists flocking?
Leicester Mercury: “Madeleine McCann tour takes customers on sightseeing trip around town where she disappeared”
Is it full of journalists?
Holidaymakers are being offered Madeleine McCann tours of the holiday complex where she disappeared. Tourists taking up the trips – which Madeleine’s parents are said to find distressing – are invited to speculate on what happened to the then-three-year-old in May 1997.
It’s a magical mystery your that recaptures the ghoulish wonder of working in newsroom before all the libel cases kicked in.
The tours take visitors to the Praia da Luz apartment where the Rothley family were staying and the tapas restaurant where her parents Gerry and Kate were dining when she vanished.
ANOTHER unnamed British tourist in Spain has been given a suspended sentence for leaving her child alone to go out on the razzle. Staff in a Majorca hotel, alerted by other guests, found the seven-year-old boy abandoned and crying in his room. Police searched for the mother in vain and arrested her when she returned – at breakfast time. After all the publicity that surrounded the tragic disappearance of Madeleine McCann in the Algarve when her parents hadn’t even left the complex, how could any mum do such a thing?
The law dealt with her.
Worse, if they can do so in a foreign country, how often does it happen at home? Such women are a national disgrace. Removing their kids might be going too far, but taking away their passports seems like a good idea.
Breaking up families “might be going too far” if you leave a child at home when you pop out? Might? It is.
Madeleine McCann is missing. There are no suspects. But there is lots of ‘news’.
Transfer balls: The BBC says Chelsea’s owners Roman Abramovich has sanctioned a move for Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci, 29. The Blues will offer the Italians £60m.
The Telegraph says this would be a world-record fee for a defender, beating the current record £50m PSG paid for Chelsea defender David Luiz – they bought him back for £30m.
Bonuccio is, says the paper, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte’s “dream signing”.
Bonucci has been full of praise of Conte, who managed him at Juventus and Italy. “Conte will be a big success in England, Chelsea are already a very good team and he will have them challenging both in England and in Europe,” said Bonucci, who might care to look again.
But the British Press know not all that much about Bonucci.
In June, the Metro said the player had agreed to join Chelsea.
The Sun said a “three-year deal for defender Bonucci, worth around £130,000 a week, has been accepted by the player and his agents.” The headline tol readers: “ANTONIO CONTE is plotting an amazing £57million double swoop for Italy stars Antonio Candreva and Leonardo Bonucci.”
Three months ago Bonucci cost £25m.
He’s now apparently worth £60m.
And in July he singed for Manchester City. The Sport Bible told us that:
Good news and bad news in the Daily Mail. The good news is that apartheid in South Africa has well and truly ended. The bad news is that South Africa is not a very rich country and productivity is low enough to mean poverty grips blacks and whites. No longer protected by a system designed to give them the biggest slices of pie and privilege over blacks, South African whites are free to fall.
Chris Summers is shocked.
The WHITE ghettos that blight South Africa: 20 years after the fall of apartheid, how it is now white people who live in squalid camps?
Answer: see above.
While the black South African middle class has grown and many live in big houses, with swimming pools and drive around in BMWs like their white peers; many poor whites live in squalid squatter camps just like their black peers.
There were poor whites before Apartheid ended, but the system meant they were elevated above the blacks. You whites might be poor, but you’ll never be as poor as the Untermensch.
Around 42,000 of the 4.5 million white South Africans are thought to live in poverty, which equates to 0.9 per cent. But 63.2 per cent of the country’s 43 million black South Africans also live in poverty and around 37 per cent of ‘coloureds’ – people of mixed race.
Most first-time visitors to Cape Town are mesmerized by the majesty of Table Mountain, and wowed by the vivacity of the Victorian-era waterfront. As a new visitor myself last month, I was captivated by both. But what has lodged most in my memory is something very different.
Driving from the international airport, I was struck by the sheer wretchedness of Cape Flats: the series of black townships, comprising mostly shacks with corrugated steel roofs, that stretch from the highway almost to the horizon. Few people — tourists or locals — want to talk about the Cape Flats. But there is no better starting point for a discussion of the state of contemporary South Africa.
Leonardo DiCaprio thinks democracy and free though – and thereby free speech – are overrated. Speaking at the White House ahead of a screening of his new grandiose documentary, Before the Flood, DiCaprio opined:
“If you don’t believe in climate change, you don’t believe in facts, and science, and empirical truths. And, in my humble opinion, [you] should not be allowed to hold public office.”
Believe or else. Orthodoxy rules!
Are there any more views DiCaprio disagrees with that should bar you from holding public office, even if the people have voted for you?
Al Qaeda have been a bit quiet of late. We used to see lots of their gurning loons on the TV news. Now nothing. Might this be down to the rise of Islamic State and the apparent fact that a lot of the stuff we watched was made in the Pentagon?
Sputnik News looks at a report by the grandiose Bureau of Investigative Journalism which says the Pentagon “paid at least $540 million to a UK public relations firm to produce fake Al-Qaeda videos as part of a clandestine propaganda campaign”.
The company that won this lucrative contract is Bell Pottinger, which “gave high-ranking military officials information on people who watched the fraudulent segments, which were made to look like insurgent videos and Arabic news programs”.
Got that? 12th Century Wolf, or whatever the big Qaeda film co. is called, made movies as honey traps for would-be enemies of the State. Pop one these films in a player and your details are sent to the National Security Council, the Pentagon and the CIA. (Anyone familiar with those old adverts for TV detector vans will think that’s getting off lightly.)
Crofton Black & Abigail Fielding-Smith of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism tell the Daily Beast:
In the first media interview any Bell Pottinger employee has given about the work for the U.S. military in Iraq, video editor Martin Wells told the Bureau his time in Camp Victory was “shocking, eye-opening, life-changing.”
The firm’s output was signed off by former General David Petraeus—then commander of the coalition forces in Iraq—and on occasion by the White House, he said…
There were three types of media operations commonly used in Iraq at the time, said a military contractor familiar with Bell Pottinger’s work there. “White is attributed, it says who produced it on the label,” the contractor said. “Grey is unattributed, and black is falsely attributed. These types of black ops, used for tracking who is watching a certain thing, were a pretty standard part of the industry toolkit.”
And the films?
Bell Pottinger would send teams out to film low-definition video of al Qaeda bombings and then edit it like a piece of news footage. It would be voiced in Arabic and distributed to TV stations across the region, according to Wells.
That’s £500m to make sub-standard YouTuber videos.
Police has demolished part of a farm house on the Greek island of Kos. The extension was built after the 21-month-old from Sheffield went missing in 1991. The Beeb’s report contains this eyebrow raiser: “South Yorkshire Police said the owners had agreed to officers ‘dismantling the lower part of the building’.”
You can knock down the ground floor but keep all the floors above it intact. Easy!
This is what it looks like in the Times:
The hunch is that Ben Needham was accidentally killed and, well, you can guess the rest. Unless you read the Sheffield Star, wherein we read: “LATEST: Farmhouse demolition starts in search for remains of Ben Needham.”
ITN invites armchair detectives to wonder: “Could farmhouse extension hold key to Ben’s whereabouts?”
Det Insp Jon Cousins, of South Yorkshire Police, tells media:
“Early this afternoon I will be dismantling the lower part of the farmhouse including the ground around it… just making sure that I haven’t missed any opportunity to get the answers that we require. The [Greek] family are clearly upset about what we’re doing. They have very kindly agreed to allow us to do that and I am extremely grateful. Clearly it’s going to be a very distressing time for them. This is where many generations, including the current generation, were born and grew up and we’ve got to deal with it as sensitively as possible.”
So you’re knocking down part of their home.
But needs must.
Thoughts are with Ben family. His sister Leigh-Anna is quoted in the Sun: “We just feel numb and very empty and the moment. We’re a family that’s lived in hope for 25 years that one day he will walk back through that door and now we’re facing the possible reality that he was there all along.”
Five robbers stole millions of pounds worth of jewellery and two cell phones from social media socialite Kim Kardashian in Paris. They held a gun to her head, says Sky news.
The tabloids lap it up.
The Mail wonders what really happened. “What IS the truth behind the heist?” it asks. Well, we don’t know because the culprits have yet to be caught. But the Mail’s headline is suggestive of some kind of plot on the victim’s side. We don’t know the facts but let’s hold our noses and take a hard look at the victim. That seems fair.
The Mail then invites Alison Boshoff to write:
As ratings for Keeping Up With The Kardashians keep falling, is it any wonder Kim’s gunpoint ordeal is seen by some as a huge PR stunt.
Having appraised her stolen jewels and found them wanting, Boshoff says:
Good taste aside, the mother-of-two, who was robbed at gunpoint by five masked men who tied her up in the bathroom of a luxury Paris apartment in the early hours of Monday while they stole £7.8 million of jewellery, may now be reflecting that it could have been a tad unwise to show off her wealth so ostentatiously.
As the Queen pulls on her crown and answers the door to the ‘CID’, Boshoff sees fit to repeat a few of the voices who have wondered aloud about where Kim’s security at 2am (her bodyguard Pascal Duvie as in nightclub with her siblings) and why the TV cameras were not filming the crime. Where was the woman who holds her skin in place as Kim sleeps? Why was Kim selfie implant not woking?
Boshoff then delivers a long review of Kim’s career as a reality TV star.
What the point of her article is other than to cast shade on the victim of an armed robbery, we can’t be certain. Maybe it just exists to fill space. We can add Boshoff’s to-deadline article to the – get this – 36 other Daily Mail articles on the robbery. So much for those falling rating. Kim is click-tastic in the Mail!
As for the crime, well, the Sun sums up well:
The last word on the robbery is with Sarah Ditum, who tells Indy readers: “Kim Kardashian did not deserve to be robbed just because she learned the truth about being female and famous.”
Oh. Are you sure the telly star didn’t deserve to be attacked, fear she would be raped and robbed? Her last show was a bit dull. Says Ditum:
Who can blame her for recognising a primary truth of being female and famous – that either you profit from your exposure, or someone else does – and trying to control it? Judging from the reactions to this robbery, a lot of people do.
Add that to the hundreds of articles on Kim Kardashian published today.
Doris Bohrer has died. She worked as a CIA agent, joining its forerunner the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) to defeat the Nazis. She wanted to be a fighter pilot but they wouldn’t let women do that job. So Bohrer joined the CIA – as a typist. She rose through the ranks to become the CIA’s highest ranking woman.
Her Times obituary contains a gem for anyone worried about what to do when confronted by sexism.
…Bohrer and her female colleagues were treated with near-universal condescension. Men doing the same work were addressed by their military rank; the women were dismissed as “the girls”… Indignant at the the sexist language of the mess hall, she at one point placed a fake hand grenade on the table at which she and a group of officers were eating. One of the men offered, loftily, to take the grenade and make it safe, at which point she pulled the pin. The men scattered, leaving Bohrer to finish her meal in peace.
And that’s how you deal with sexism.
Doris Bohrer, CIA agent, was born on February 5, 1923. She died of heart failure on August 8, 2016, aged 93
Denzel Washington has attempted to strangle Aretha Franklin. Washington, 20, admitted to strangling his mother, 52-year-old Aretha Franklin, in Manhattan, New York.
“I am informed by Aretha Franklin,” says the complaint filed by police, “that she observed the defendant place his hands around her neck and apply pressure, thereby causing redness, bruising and substantial pain to her neck.”
Washington has admitted an harassment charge. He’s been sentenced to a conditional discharge and an anger management programme. Washington was also ordered to stay away from Franklin’s home.
PS – “Why should I change? He’s the one who sucks,” says a character named Michael Bolton in the 1999 film Office Space.
Has Article 50 been triggered? No. But we’re getting lots of news that it might be, maybe. It’s the Tory Party conference and leader Theresa May is keen to please all sides of her Cabinet by talking up Brexit whilst doing very little top make it happen.
May will formally begin the Brexit process by the end of March 2017, she has told the BBC.
Great. Pull the trigger…and:
The prime minister confirmed the deadline for triggering Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which sets in place a two-year process of withdrawal. She has also promised a “Great Repeal Bill” in the next Queen’s Speech, which will overturn the act that took the UK into the forerunner of the EU.
The Sun says we are on the “March to Freedom”.
The Mail says Theresa May is “not for tuning” – just like Margaret Thatcher said she wasn’t.
All good. The people voted to reject the European Union.
The BBC adds:
It will remove the European Communities Act 1972 from the statute book. The government will also enshrine all existing EU law into British law.
Hands up those who voted to regain control the country?
Knock. Knock. The anti-free speech police are surely on their way to Margate, Kent, home of “Extremist Zebadiah Abu-Obadiah”. The Daily Mail says he’s called for the death of former Ukip leader Nigel Farage. He “labels the Queen a ‘w****’ in vile video…. Abu-Obadiah, real name Robert Boaler, also warns ‘chat s***, get Rigby’d’.”
Alex Matthews has exposed this heinous behaviour.
Among the disturbing lyrics he warns people that if they ‘chat s***’ they will get ‘Rigby’d’ – referring to the fatal stabbing of fusilier Lee Rigby by Islamic extremists Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale in 2013.
Nigel Farage is name-checked:
Some brehs [sic] are destined for damnation like Farage, off with his head.
There are a couple of people who are more than evil, that make you frustrated and need decapitating.
They spread the hate and fear and they get no rating around here. So lets make it clear I want their heads on spears.
Sing along if you know the words:
The chorus then repeats: ‘Kill them, Kill them.’
At one disturbing part of the film a voiceover is heard calling for the death of ‘children and babies’ while in other sections a child’s doll is pictured among flames.
Who is this nutter? He must be stopped. Well done to the Mail for bringing this underground rapper to the nation’s attention.
Boaler ran against Mr Farage for the South Thanet seat under the Al-Zebabist Nation of OOG party, in the General Election, but only garnered 30 votes.
Al-Zebabist Nation of OOG party? Who are they? Helpfully, they run a website. But Matthews could have kept his browser history from alerting the Internet Watch team by looking at less dark sources.
RT: “The Nation of Ooog [“a semi-satirical group”], which takes its name from the deity it worships, also vowed to legalize the use of heroin and consumption of dog meat.”
Vice: “We meet the party’s leader, Zebadiah Abu Obadiah, to talk about why they don’t have time for spoof parties, why every female in Britain should wear a hijab and why everyone should take a massive fatal heroin overdose on their 50th birthday.”
“The group, officially registered as a political party in the constituency with the Electoral Commission, says it wants to eradicate Broadstairs, one of the towns on the Isle of Thanet, and establish a “a Zebabist state run by Boalia Law”. The party, led by the ‘Prophet Zebadiah’, real name Robert Bealer, campaigns to ban all hetero-marriage and to lower tax for bearded families – with women and children allowed to wear fake beards.
Adam Johnson, the former Sunderland, Manchester City and England footballer jailed for sexually abusing a 15-year-old fan is a lowlife. But the Mail is shocked and amazed by his life in prison. The paper declares:
Paedophile footballer Adam Johnson is still earning £5,000-a-week despite being locked up for sexually abusing a teenage fan.
Is there some sick trade in a celebrity paedo’s image rights? Maybe, because the Sun says a little ambiguously: “Disgraced footballer Adam Johnson is still raking in £5000 a week while behind bars for child sex offences.”
The Star makes it sounds as if Johnson is getting paid to be a lag: “The ex-England footballer will pick up £250,000 for every year he is locked up on child sex charges.” The longer the sentence, the more he earns?
Back to the Mail, which thunders:
The winger, who was capped 12 times for England, used to earn £60,000-a-week while under contract with Sunderland. The Black Cats sacked him after he plead guilty to the child sex offences, but it has emerged that Johnson will not be strapped for cash when he is released from prison.
The Daily Star reports that thanks to shrewd property investments and high interest funds before he was convicted, the Premier League star is set to take home around £250,000-a-year without kicking a ball.
Wow! Adam Johnson is the shrewd paedophile, then, the criminal who invested his legally earned money soundly.
Do we expect the State and victims to take control of all a convicted criminal’s investments and money?
As newspaper investigations go, the Mail’s look at the piece of coffee 30,000 feet in the air aboard a plane is weaker than a happy hour cocktail in Riyadh. In “Revealed: How low-cost airlines inflate the price of in-flight coffee by up to 4,000 per cent”, Qin Xie repurposes as bit of PR from Kayak.co.uk, which “looked at the prices for coffee on five low-cost airlines departing from the UK – Ryanair, easyJet, Thomas Cook, Flybe and Jet2 – and compared them with the cost of making the same beverage at home.”
Budget airline unveils new low-cost seats
Unless you live aboard a passenger jet, the relative costs don’t hold water. But undeterred by the obvious, the Mail ploughs on:
For example, the cost of a cup of Lavazza coffee on Ryanair is the equivalent of £2.55 when converted from euros. But if you purchased the same coffee at supermarkets, available in 100g tins for £3, each serving comes in at just six pence.
This means a mark-up of 4,150 per cent was applied to the coffee.
What does a cup of coffee cost in high-street coffee shops, like Nero or Costa, or in a local greasy spoon cafe? Qin Xie doesn’t mention that.
But look out for the Mail campaign for the right for passengers to take aboard their own kettles, coffee granules and mugs.
PS – And look out for other ‘revelations’ on other things that cost more when not bought in bulk and consumed in the home, like, well everything.
When its the right time to switch off the machines keeping a patient alive? On July 20, Sam Hemming, 22, a Bangor University graduate and keen sportswoman, was a passenger in her boyfriend’s car when it crashed on the M6. The car flipped over. Sam Hemming banged her head hard on the window.
At hospital, after six hours of operations doctors placed the badly injured woman in a coma. They told her parents Emma had no chance of recovery. For 19 days she showed no sign of brain activity. They were all set to tun off the life-support machines when Emma’s toe moved when a staff member inadvertently brushed it with an ice-cold wipe.
“The computer showed some brain activity,” Ms Hemming’s mother, Carol, tells the Times. “It was amazing. She would have had the heat and cold test before they switched the machine off but they brushed it across her toe earlier than expected and it saved her.”
Eight weeks later Emma returned to her parents’ Hereford home. She has learnt to talk and walk.
“Doctors are totally in shock,” Mrs Hemming adds. “You see the specialist surgeons, paramedics and police and they look at Sammy and their mouths fall open. Why her condition is different is that part of the brain has developed her speech and movement. That is why all the neurosurgeons were getting so excited as it is very rarely seen. She is a walking miracle.”
Says Emma: “My talking is fine and I just want to get better now. Before the accident I wanted to be a solicitor and that ambition hasn’t changed. I still want a career in the law.”
Medicine is amazing. (The legal profession, less so.)
Marijuana stinks. The scent is a bit like boiled cabbage, only sweeter and more sickly. Marijuana smells like your mum’s air-freshener and Washington DC.
Matthew Little smells of weed. Not everyone likes his perfume. His local bus operator has now banned Matthew from riding their vehicles in Bremerton in Kitsap County, Washington, for six months. His ban includes his standing at bus stops.
Kitsap Transit says its passengers can be banned from smelling of: cat urine, human faeces and sweat.
“From time to time, I smell like I just smoked some marijuana probably because I just did,” says Little.
Kitsat Transports says Little smelled so bad “the driver began to choke and had to cover her nose”. Little “chose to ignore repeated warnings that violating our rules of conduct would result in his exclusion.”
When asked what he thinks he smells like, Little responded: “Ganga or Karl Lagerfeld.”
Note: Karl Lagerfeld smells of leatherette with base notes of talc and warm mug.