Politicans and world leaders making news and in the news, and spouting hot air
KAREN Danczuk spent more than seven hours with her personal trainer as he stayed the night at her house. Athletic Ben Bate sneaked into the 31-year-old’s marital home late on Thursday — just five days after she split with husband Simon, a Labour MP.
Photos of the man are captioned:
Karen works out in the park with personal trainer Ben
Ben outside Karen’s house on Wednesday evening
He walks into the house
Looking out of the window shortly before midnight
Personal trainer leaves in the early hours
Thrilling stuff that any private dick should appreciate.
The pick of the photos, however, is the one labelled:
Wearing T-shirt for Ben’s gym
“He was overwhelmed that suddenly it was all about me! I think there was a bit of jealousy….It used to be all about Simon. I used to be his plus-one, but it changed dramatically and became more about me. Even at MP events, I became the star. Simon probably just felt a little taken aback.”
The Sun adds:
Before her rise to fame, Karen was happy in her role as MP’s wife bringing up their two boys Milton and Sebastian in Rochdale, Gtr Manchester.
Odd. Yesterday the Mirror said her sons were called Milton and Maurice? still, who cares about that pair when you have pneumatic Karen and her tweets.
“There was no blazing argument. There was a lot of tension that built up over time with how our lives were becoming very different. We just knew it couldn’t go on. There was a moment the next morning where Simon back-tracked and we both cried but my mind was made up by then. I finished it for the both of us.”
Karen went solo:
“It was difficult for him for me to suddenly be in the limelight, but I’ve realised he’s got his career and now it’s time for me to not only focus on the boys but also my career.”
And her career seems to be suppoted by the Sun, whose agont aunt Dear Deirdre opines:
…this sad story of a relationship foundering because a high-profile husband can’t stand the limelight shifting to his missus is pretty familiar.
Is that what happened? Who knows. All we know is that a vain, media-friendly MP and his flirty, fame-seeking wife are in the news. A stint on Love Island or Big Brother beckons.
And it should be entertaining. As Camilla Long wrote:
I have never met a family so chaotic. (During the interview she cries and then Simon cries, both swear and loudly slag other people off and everyone behaves as if this is a perfectly normal Sunday morning.)
Amran Hussain, 29, a Labour candidate for the North East Hampshire in the recent election, has visited the beach where Seifeddine Rezgui murdered 38 tourists on Friday. He took a selfie. The spot where so many lost their lives became an ‘I was there’ moment.
Mr Hussain tells MailOnline – who brand the photo “a sick selfie”:
“Selfies are not banned. I don’t see anything wrong with it. We were not capturing a happy moment, we were very distressed after what happened and we went down to the beach for 30 minutes to show solidarity. We laid flowers and wrote a tribute and prayed to those who lost their lives in the horrific massacre. We would have asked someone else to take a picture of us, but we were in the moment and we wanted to take a picture with the tribute and flowers we had put down. It has been taken completely out of context. It was all very upsetting and we just wanted to have a reminder of what happened. I just happened to be using a selfie stick as that is what I always use.”
Lord Greville Janner of Braunstone: It’s been 70 days since the Crown Prosecution Service decided not to prosecute Lord Janner on grounds of his poor health.
The Telegraph: Alison Saunders: My Lord Janner decision could be reversed”
Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecutions, has conceded that if her decision not to prosecute Lord Janner with child sex offences is reversed by a formal review she will abide by that ruling…
She’d have no choice.
Ms Saunders told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “There is a victims right to review going on. We have a process which has been activated and we are waiting for the outcome of that. The outcome of that could be that my decision is upheld or it could be that it is reversed. And I have said that I will abide by that advice that we’ve sought and I will abide by that advice.”
Top lawyer vows to sticks to rules. Read all about it!
The Times: “Janner ‘will face justice’ over child sex abuse claims”
Will. Not could?
The decision by the Crown Prosecution Service not to prosecute Lord Janner over allegations that he was a serial child abuser is set to be overturned.
A senior barrister who has spent several weeks examining the evidence as part of an independent review has concluded that there should be a hearing — the first step towards a full trial, according to the Daily Mail.
Ah! Janner is 86. He’s ill. How long will the hearing process take?
Daily Mail: “Janner WILL face justice: Top barrister to recommend DPP’s decision is over-ruled so case against Labour peer IS heard in court”
The development will pile pressure on Mrs Saunders, who has suffered a torrid two months amid questions over her handling of the Janner affair. She is expected to face renewed calls from critics to consider her position.
She looks doomed.
The extraordinary twist in the case comes after a group of Janner’s alleged victims applied for a formal review of the decision not to charge him. The appeal was launched after Mrs Saunders ruled the peer should not be charged on health grounds, despite saying there was enough evidence to prosecute him for 22 sex offences against nine people. She also ruled out holding a trial of facts, which can be used when suspects are unable to enter pleas or instruct lawyers.
More than a dozen people came forward to claim he abused them during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. His family has repeatedly denied he is connected to any wrongdoing.
Simon Danczuk, the MP for Rochdale , tells the Guardian:
“I am pleased to hear the suggestion that Janner will finally face justice: the alleged victims deserve this. The allegations against him are horrific, and we need to hear the facts before a court.
“All suggestions are that Saunders reached the wrong conclusion in April and this is not the first time she has made a major mistake, She has struggled in some of her decisions to pursue journalists through the courts, too. Her job is all about judgment.”
Such are the facts.
Lord Greville Janner of Braunstone: a round-up of media reporting on the Labour peer mired in the story of Westminster peados. It’s been 67 days since the Crown Prosecution Sevice decided not to prosecute Lord Janner on gounds of his failing health.
The Sun: “Peer ‘raped kids in Parliament’ MP accuses Lord Janner”
That is some accusation. And it’s been made by Labour MP Simon Danczuk.
The campaigning MP’s comments came in a Westminster Hall debate – giving him protection from being sued for libel.
Any evidence to support the claims?
He blasted: “The shocking thing is that the CPS admits that the witnesses are not unreliable, it admits that Janner should face prosecution but refuses to bring a case. I know the police are furious about this and rightly so. Anyone who has heard the accusations will be similarly outraged.”
They are not unreliable but the DPP says the defendant is.
He went on: “I have met with Leicestershire police and discussed the allegations in detail. Children being violated, raped and tortured – some in the very building in which we now sit.”
Those are allegations.
He added: “Personally I fail to see how the knowledge that a peer of the realm is a serial child abuser is not in the public interest.”
Hold on. The knowledge that he is has not been established. That’s the problem. All we have are allegations. If Danczuk is certain of Lord Janner’s giuilt then why not slap the proof in the public domain?
Lord Janner has been accused in Parliament of being a serial abuser who attacked children inside the Palace of Westminster. Labour MP Simon Danczuk said police had told him they wanted to bring 22 historical charges against Lord Janner, dating between 1969 and 1988.
Today’s police do. But yesterday’s police did not.
Lord Janner’s family has said that the peer “is entirely innocent of any wrongdoing”.
His innocence must be presumed, right?
The Rochdale MP continued: “If Lord Janner really is too ill to face prosecution, then why can’t the courts establish this with a fitness to plead process? This would clear up doubts that still linger, for example why he was still visiting parliament on official visits after he was declared unfit to face justice.”
Yes, indeed. The MP for Rochdale, Cyril Smith’s old haunt and the palce where paedo gangs operated for years. The culture of denial has led to how many people in authority being arrrested and jailed? None.
Mr Danczuk was repeatedly warned by the chair of the debate, Conservative MP Anne Main, against criticising Lord Janner. A former DPP-turned-Labour MP, Sir Keir Starmer, said: “The decision before the DPP was not an easy decision. It was a stark and difficult choice between two unattractive approaches. We should respect the independence she brought to the decision making, and the fact she’s had that decision out for a review. To that extent I think we should inhibit our comments on the case.”
The Telegraph has more from the MPs address:
“The official charges are 14 indecent assaults of a male under 16 between 1969 and 1988; two indecent assaults between 1984 and 1988; four counts of buggery of a male under 16 between 72 and 87, two counts of buggery between 1977 and 1988. My office has spoken to a number of the alleged victims and heard their stories. I cannot overstate the effect that this abuse has had on their lives…
“The Director of Public Prosecutions has said that Lord Janner will not offend again. But the failure to prosecute Lord Janner offends every principle of justice – he may not abuse again but the legacy of the abuse continues. His victims needs the truth [sic] and they need to be heard.”
Lord Janner says he’s not absued at all.
Labour’s John Mann said “hundreds of thousands” were “just starting to come forward” with allegations – but added they were just “the tip of the iceberg”.
Well, if the abuse went on for decades, then you can imagine many more victims were ignored.
He claimed the Establishment was still preventing damaging revelations about the “systemic” abuse being made public.
The Establishment? What is an MP and the police if not parts of the Establishment?
He said: “It gives a strong message that there are different layers in society and some people can get away with things. Why was Cyril Smith, when repeatedly apprehended, not prosecuted?”
Mr Mann believes this question is key to the truth behind the alleged cover-up
Smith is dead.
Lord Janner: a round-up of media reporting on the Labour peer mired in the story of Westminster peados. It’s been 66 days since the Crown Prosecution Sevice decided not to prosecute Lord Janner on gounds of his failing health.
The Indy: “Ed Miliband was urged to throw out Lord Janner over ‘stomach-churning’ child abuse allegations five months before Labour suspended him”
Who did the urging? And whay does the Express ssays Miliband ws urged “six months” before Janner was suspended?
The warning came from one of his own MPs – Simon Danczuk – who sent a letter to the former leader in October last year to urge him to quickly suspend Lord Janner after three senior officers from Leicestershire police had disclosed serious alleged abuse to him.
Danczuk loves to blow his own horn.
“You couldn’t describe the action that has been taken by the party as swift and decisive,” he told Channel 4 News. “The nature of the allegation is so serious that really decisive action was required. I think they should expel him from the party. I think the allegations are that serious that they should carry out a short, sharp investigation which I am sure would conclude that he should be expelled from the party.”
We’d like to know more about this ‘sharp investigation’. Who would investigate? What facts would they have? How far back would the investigation reach – Lord Janner has been accused of offences during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s? Danczuk’s idea of an investigation to reach the “sure” conclusion of guilt is an affront to justice. It’s self-serving, PR-driven balls.
Lord Greville Janner: a look at news on the Labour peer embroiled in allegations that he abused children. He maintains his innocence. It’s been 58 days since the Crown Prosecution Sevice decided not to prosecute Lord Janner on gounds of his failing health.
With no actual news to report, we make do with a tenuous link between Janner and Michael Jackson. In keeping with the story of Westminster peados, like most of the people implicated, Jackson is dead. And he never read the letter Janner wrote him.
The Leicester Mercury takes up the tale:
Greville Janner wrote to superstar Michael Jackson congratulating him on being cleared of child sex charges… The Labour peer and former Leicester West MP wrote the letter shortly after the singer was cleared by an American jury of molesting a 13-year-old.
A number of national newspapers reported at the weekend that Lord Janner wrote to Jackson, who died aged 50 in 2009, on personalised House of Lords paper in 2005.
He is said to have passed the letter to former child actor Mark Lester and asked him to give it to Jackson.
What he wrote was:
“I was so very pleased at the news of your acquittal. What a terrible time you have endured. You know how much I enjoyed and appreciated meeting you at the Universal Studios and in the UK – and especially on that wonderful day in Parliament and the journey to Exeter. So I send you my very best wishes – and hope you will return to London before long and that I should have the pleasure of seeing you once again before long.”
In June 2002 Janner gave Jackson, spoon-bender Uri Geller and US magician David Blaine a tour of the Houses of Parliament. Lester is chiefly famous for having played Oliver Twist in the 1968 film.
Says Mr Lester:
“Janner knew I was friends with Michael. He gave me the letter and asked me to give it to him. I stuffed it in my pocket and never got round to it. I stumbled across it while clearing my house. What he said was inappropriate.”
If there was ever word that sums up this decade it is ‘inappropriate’. Why is it inappropriate for Janner to have to written to the then world’s biggest star? I mean, did you see Jackson’s fans back then?
There were a few naysayers:
And it was huge news.
But Lester is agog not that Jackson was given a tour of Westminster, but that Janner wrote him a letter:
“Michael Jackson was hounded for much of his life over these allegations and was then found not guilty. No one should congratulate Michael on being cleared let alone a QC and peer. It’s as if he’s saying, ‘Well done, you got away with it’.”
No. It isn’t. Jackson was found not guilty. Janner said it must have been a burden. He never once said ‘Nice one, you got away with it.’
The story of Westminster peadophiles has taken on a life of its own. The alleged abuse is said to have occured over years. This longevity suggests a culture of denial and, to some, a conspiracy of depraved men working together to maintain a secret. But facts are now so thin we get stories of a Wacko Jacko fan letter being passed off as news. In place of evidence of child rape in the shadow of power, we get news of ‘inappropriate’ words. ‘Innocent until proven innocent’, says one of the pro-Jackson banners. To which we would add a new one: ‘Guilty when dead.’
Such are the facts.
Bias: The Sun says Nicola Stugeon was roasted on The Daily Show but Scottish readers see an epic win
The Sun continues to bill SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon as a dangeous loon to readers south of the border and hero to those north of it.
Sturgeon’s been on The Daily Show. The Scottish Sun reports:
NICOLA STURGEON had viewers of The Daily Show in stitches last night; days after the programmes website wrongly billed her as a COMEDIAN.
She told host Jon Stewart: “You billed as a comedian – so you’ve raised all these expectations that I’m going to be funny. And I’m a politician, and as you know, politicians are rarely very funny.”
Host Jon Stewart, whose trademark style is to mercilessly tease guests, asked the Scots politician “You think you’re Saddam Hussein? You get 99%?” after she joked she had “ordered an inquiry” into why the SNP won just 56 out of 59 seats in the general election.
“I think you should always aim for more,” the SNP leader shot back.
Or as the non-Scottish Sun put it:
‘You think you’re Saddam Hussein’ – NICOLA Sturgeon compared to Iraqi monster as she gets a roasting from U.S. chat show host Jon Stewart
Lord Greville Janner: a look at news on the Labour peer embroiled in allegations that he abused children. He maintains his innocence. It’s been 52 days since the Crown Prosecution Sevice decided not to prosecute Lord Janner on gounds of his failing health.
BBC: “Lord Janner claim investigated by police in Scotland”
Police in Scotland are understood to be investigating claims Labour peer Lord Janner abused a boy there in the 1970s. Det Ch Supt Lesley Boal said Police Scotland officers were investigating a historical complaint – but did not confirm a name.
As ever, facts are thinner than Theresa May’s smile.
BBC home affairs correspondent Tom Symonds said the allegation had first been made in 1991 by a Leicester man who told police that Greville Janner sexually abused him during the 1970s – including in Scotland.
We’re told that Leicestershire police investigated and found Janner had no case to answer. And now a mere 14 years later the allegations resueface. The accused man is now old. He and his victims are denied a court trial. And all we get is a stink.
Now Scottish police are investigating.
“Because Scotland has a separate and independent prosecutor, it would be able to make its own decision about whether to charge Lord Janner,” he added.
Is there new evidence to warrant a charge that wasn’t available to police in 1991? Did the Scottish police investigate Janner? Questions and more questions. And with no court date, there is no chance to having them answered with satisfaction.
So that’s two police forces investigating Janner, the Crown Prosecution Service reviewing the Director of Public Prosecutions’ decision that m’lord would to be unable to take part in his defence due to his poor health, and Justice Lowell Goddard looking at the Labour peer as part od her independent inquiry into child sex abuse.
Yeah, that’s all.
Lord Janner is 86. He says he’s innocent.
But the Mail picks up a scent.
Daily Mail: “With a school party on a Commons visit in 1976, two Labour grandees Greville Janner and George Thomas who ‘abused children'”
Smiling broadly, two Labour grandees welcome a party of young schoolboys to the Commons. Since this photograph was taken in 1976, Greville Janner and George Thomas have been exposed as alleged paedophiles.
Exposed. Alleged. Can you be exposed as an alleged anything? What happened to those barriers to guilt?
The pair, later ennobled as Lord Janner and Viscount Tonypandy, have been accused of preying on children and yesterday campaigners said there was growing evidence a Labour paedophile ring operated at Westminster.
Is the Mail serious in labelling Labour the Paedos Party? If it is, were Liberal Sir Cyril Smith and Sir Tory Peter Hayman wannabe Labour members?
Thomas, Commons Speaker before becoming a peer, is said to have propositioned young men in his official grace and favour apartment in Parliament. He died aged 88 in 1997, but is now the subject of investigations by British Transport Police over an incident on a train in 1959, and by South Wales Police into a claim he raped a nine-year-old boy.
How can that be proven?
The alleged rape victim came forward to say he was abused at home in the late 1960s and early 1970s by the MP, who had befriended his foster parents.
A third former Labour MP, the late Leo Abse, has also been named as an alleged abuser.
Abse is dead. Smith is dead. Hayman is dead. Thomas is dead.
Yesterday campaigning Labour MP Simon Danczuk, who exposed the Cyril Smith scandal, said: ‘If George Thomas abused a nine-year-old boy, then you can be certain it was not a one-off. He would have abused others. The links between these people are coming together like a jigsaw puzzle, and one does get the impression there was a Labour network of paedophiles.’
If. Certain. We’re digging up the bodies to beat them with sticks. It’s only when the depraved grandees die that their guilt becomes a certainty. The pieces from Danczuk’s jigsaw puzzle crumble like dead skin when touched.
The close bond between Janner and Thomas is clear from the black-and-white photograph unearthed by the Mail, which was taken on June 22, 1976. Janner had arranged for 70 pupils from his Leicester West constituency to visit the Commons. There is no suggestion any of the children in the photo were abused…
The claims about Thomas, a one-time headmaster and Methodist lay preacher, surfaced last year. His victim, now aged 56 and living in Australia, said: ‘I was raped by George Thomas in Cardiff. I was about nine. He spent a lot of time at my house.’
He alleged the abuse also happened at another address in the city. A second victim says he was sexually abused on a train from Paddington to Aberystwyth when he was 22 and Thomas was 50.
Thomas, an MP from 1945 to 1983, was a secretary of state for Wales in Harold Wilson’s government and presided over the 1969 investiture of the Prince of Wales. He also read the lesson at Prince Charles’s wedding to Lady Diana Spencer in 1981.
Wasn’t is Sir Jimmy Savile who took Diana’s secrets to his grave?
In 2001, Leo Abse MP spoke to the Sunday Times about helping with George Thomas MP’s young blackmailer:
“Over the years, given his exposed position, it was inevitable that he would fall victim to blackmail. On one occasion, after a distraught recounting to me of the pressure upon him, I insisted I would meet and deal with the young criminal in his constituency into whose hands he had fallen.
“My reputation in Cardiff’s criminal underworld stood me in good stead in dealing with the wretch. As a lawyer, I had often acted in the courts on behalf of the local prosecution department, and even more frequently, I had defended the city’s gangsters. As one-time chairman of the watch committee, I had the duty of supervising the local police.
“The blackmailing cur, therefore, had no doubt that, unless he desisted, I would carry out my threat to ensure he was put behind bars for 10 years; shortly after our encounter he found it was politic to quit the city.”
The Mail forgets to say that Thomas was chairman of National Children’s Home (NCH) in 1983.
Such are the facts.
Tony Blair is an idiot. Tony Blair says Holocaust denial should be a crime.
The idiot thinks Holocaust deniers are so powerful their voices must be made taboo. He says their ridiculous, wholly racist views should not be debated. He says anyone for whom the Holocaust is fact is so weak-minded, sensitive and shockable they will be undone by an anti-Semite who says it was all a lie.
Tony Blair champions censorship. He denies free speech. He denies the right to offend and to be offended.
He makes Jewish suffering the taboo to be challenged.
He makes martyrs of people who should be pariahs.
He is the enemy of freedom.
Here’s the thing, Tony: the Holocaust deniers are just the people who were on the other side. When the war ended, it was not the death of anti-Semitism. That horror just mutates; the bigots find a new excuse to get the Jews.
Blair, who wears his Christian god on his sleeve, is keen to be on the side of the good, taking on the scum who attack Jews, making liars of the murdered and using their suffering as a cosh to beat them – what else is the comparing of Israeli Army action to the Nazis but fometing the idea that the Jews never learn and are deserving of collective punishment?
The anti-Semites deny the Holocaust was a lie but think it a great idea.
Tony Blair uses the Holocaust to make a case for his own moral goodness. For him the Holocaust it part of a ceremonial industry in affirmation.
The Holocaust according to Tony Blair is not about the Jews – it is all about him, a perma-tanned beacon of State-approved history and an illiberal enemy of free speech.
The former Liberal Democrat Party leader Charles Kennedy has died at his home in Fort William, Highland, Scotland aged 55. He brought a humanity not generally accepted or too well understood in 1983 when he entered the Westminster Parliament at 23-years-old and then the youngest MP. He continued to represent his home territory for 32 years and lost his seat to the Scottish National Party in May’s General Election.
He rose through the ranks to in 2001 lead his party to its strongest ever membership of the National Parliament.
In what many found to be a magnificent stand, Charles Kennedy fought against all-comers from other major parties over the proposed invasion and war in Iraq. There is little doubt he was right in every respect in his then dire predictions of what was to follow. When it finally struggles into print. the long-delayed Chilcot Inquiry may very well be his finest epitaph.
Kennedy’s humanity had its fragility and alcohol abuse destroyed his professional and home life.
What was totally unique about him was he could attend social gatherings in Highland Village halls and stately country homes alike and very soon be flat out and sleeping off excesses on the hall floor or in the temporary bar. The evening’s guests would step over him while the festivities went on and all would ensure someone saw he was safely delivered home at the end of the night.
His friends and neighbours accepted him for what he was and understood he suffered from the worst of all conditions – West Highland Disease – otherwise recognised as chronic alcoholism. Above all else he was loved and respected as a Highlander doing the best he could for his voters and country alike. The Nationalist fervour now endemic in Scotland swept him to one side. He was devastated by the loss of his constituency his mainstay support.
Just this once the cliche “We will never see his like again” may very well be true and we all are the poorer for the loss of his total honesty, essential decency and… yes, even those frailties which destroyed him.
To New Zealand, where Member of Parliament Ron Mark is addressing the House. The opposing benches are jeering him. He looks their way and speaks softly. What’s that? We didn’t catch it. But it was picked up loud and clear by Parliament TV’s sign language interpreter who relayed the words to viewers back home. She’s making a guest appearance as part of Sign Language Awareness Week.
And we now more aware of her skills:
Note: The New Zealand television channel TV3 was banned for three days from filming in Parliament in August 2006 for showing Mark repeatedly giving the finger to another MP.
The Mirror Group titles have been found guilty of phone hacking. We’ve been listening out for what Labour MP Chris Bryant has to say about it. When Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp was found guilty of the same, Bryant, a phone-hacking victim, was verbose and demanding:
“They argued for a long time that there were very few victims – that there was just one rogue reporter – that they had done a full investigation and all that proves to be untrue. One of my anxieties is the police didn’t do a full investigation in 2006, 2009 and 2010 when lots of people were calling for a full investigation. Consequently we still don’t know the full level of the criminality that went on at the News of the World and in fact many of the victims themselves don’t know they were involved.I think this is just the beginning of the story. I’m seeking a judicial review of the Metropolitan Police’s activity. I have a big anxiety about why the Metropolitan Police didn’t do a proper investigation themselves.”
“The next thing is, I’m writing to all the non-executive directors, including the former Spanish Prime Minister Mr Aznar and others of News Corp, to ask them what they knew, when they knew it, what actions they took to ensure that their newspaper was complying with police investigations,” Bryant told Reuters yesterday. “What did the directors do to check on what Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson said about phone hacking back in 2003, and did they know about hush money that was paid? This company has shown itself completely unable to act within the law, and if it’s not able to do that, if it’s true as the police said on Tuesday that they had deliberately thwarted the police investigation, then I think they shouldn’t have any share in a British media organisation.”
“Leave aside the original criminality of hacking people’s phones – including the victims of crime who never asked to be brought into the public domain at all – it’s the cover-up, the lies. ‘This was just one reporter,’ ‘This was just one newspaper,’ when actually we know it was endemic in the whole of News International.”
They were “drunk on power”:
“There was a major cover-up at News International which stretched right up to the very highest levels of the company, as we know even up to James Murdoch.And that, in the end, I suspect, will prove to have been the biggest crime.”
He knew where the buck stopped:
“This is designed to try and protect Rebekah Brooks, and I believe that if she had a shred of decency after what we have heard about Milly Dowler’s phone being hacked, which happened on her watch as editor, she should have resigned by now. Everything that’s been announced today just goes to show that there’s been a cover-up, that Parliament has been misled, that police have been corrupted, that police investigations were undermined. This strategy of chucking first journalists, then executives and now a whole newspaper overboard isn’t going to protect the person at the helm of the ship.”
Chris Bryant has been far less vocal about the Labour-supporting Mirror’s crimes.
If they have it their way, our MPs will control the free press.
Hacking: Will John Prescott discuss Paul Gascoigne’s £188,250 compensation in his Daily Mirror column?
Former England footballer Paul Gascoigne has been awarded £188,250 in phone-hacking damages from Mirror Group Newspapers.
Others who had their privacy unlawfully invaded by the Mirror’s titles include: Sadie Frost (£260,000), Shane Richie (£155,000), Lucy Benjamin (£157,250) Shobna Gulati (£117,500), Alan Yentob (£85,000), Robert Ashworth (£201,250) and Lauren Alcorn (£72,500).
Meanwhile, hacking victim and Labour Party stalwart John Prescott continues to write for the Labour-supporting Mirror.
In case you missed it, this is what Prescott said when Rupert Murdoch’s titles were caught hacking:
The News of the World died. The Left cheered.
Prescott and his Mirror column live on.
The Washington Post reports that suspected IRA member Prince Charles is to meet Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams to promote “reconciliation and healing”.
Charles continues to deny being a member of the IRA, Hot Gossip and The Sex Pistols.
The Sun says “Good riddance” to Hull City’s Jake Livermore who faces the “sack over drugs shame”. A routine drugs test revealed traces of cocaine in Livermore’s urine. The club suspended him. His future is uncertain. Livermore is an idiot.
But for the Sun to attack the player who took a non-performance enhancing drug that cheats only his teammates is lamentable. Cheering the idea that he should be sacked for his foolishness is weak.
Westminster Paedos: Tory MP Alexander Victor Edward Paulet Montagu secret sex crimes against children
The Times has news that an MP who abused boy in 1970s let off with a police caution.
A Conservative MP escaped prosecution for child abuse in the 1970s even though he admitted indecent assault… Victor Montagu was cautioned by police after he assured them that he would avoid contact with the victim. The disclosure will lend weight to allegations of an establishment cover-up of historical child sex abuse.
Montagu was an MP for South Dorset. That’s Alexander Victor Edward Paulet Montagu, also known as Viscount Hinchingbrooke and the Earl of Sandwich.
He indecently assaulted a boy for two years.
And he is DEAD. Of course he is. Because only the dead get judged.
The Guardian says the decision not to prosecute him was made by the Dorset and Bournemouth police force and Sir Norman Skelhorn, QC, the former head of the crown proseuction service.
Sir Norman also decided that Cyril Smith, the Liberal politican, should not face charges after eight men went to police in 1970 claiming that he had abused them. He died in 2010.
That’s was Sir Cyril Smith until he died and was duly found guilty of being a nonce.
A letter from prosecutors in 1972 said:
“The assaults, which are admitted, are not of themselves very serious, and if Mr Montagu is prepared to take the excellent advice given to him by Detective Chief Inspector [Jack] Newman and avoid any contact with the boy I do not think proceedings are called for.”
The Guardian has the facts:
The files show the boy was interviewed on 10 November 1972 after rumours that he was being sexually abused. Two officers visited Montagu at his home in Mapperton, Dorset, and interviewed him under caution. He was later charged by police with two counts of indecently assaulting a male under 16 on a number of occasions between 31 December 1970 and January 1972 and of indecently assaulting the same boy between 31 December 1971 and November 1972. He was remanded to appear at Bridport magistrates court.
But when the then chief constable of Dorset and Bournemouth, Arthur Hambleton, wrote to Skelhorn for advice on the case, prosecutors chose to give Montagu a caution instead of proceeding with a criminal trial in public.
Montagu’s son, Robert says his father abused him between the ages of seven and 11.
Robert Montagu has gone on the record.
The abuse was finally discovered when one of Robert’s sisters realised he was sharing a bath with their father. Shortly afterwards, his mother and the family doctor sat him down and questioned him. He told them everything.
Days later, he was sent back to prep school, confused and terrified that his father would go to prison. Instead, the family decided to say nothing, protecting the reputation of the family whose motto, ironically, is ‘Post Tot Naufragia Portum’ – ‘After so many shipwrecks, a haven’.
Robert says: ‘I do think we have to take this problem more seriously – pursuing people who act in this way and not allowing them to escape. It’s easy for me to say that.
‘I let my father escape, as have all my family. But we’ve got to get tougher. I particularly want families to be active in reporting. It’s a difficult thing but it must be done. You cannot have an 11-year-old telling of abuse that had reached a zenith and not act. You must make sure that person is not in a position to do the same again.’
As Robert grew older, he realised there were others. Once he saw the paperboy go into his father’s bedroom and close the door. Victor, who died in 1995 aged 88, also abused one of Robert’s schoolfriends.
Robert says: ‘I know personally of ten (victims) and I’ve spoken with most of those. They were family friends, London contacts, Dorset contacts, holiday contacts.’
You can read the story in Robert’s book A Humour Of Love. But you can’t ask his dad if it’s all true because dad is dead.
When Chuka Umunna annunced his decsiosn to stand as Labour leader, he adressed the electorate with his video:
Celebrated and attacked for his ‘slickness’, Umanna had announced his ambitions with all the finesse of a 1970s corporate training video. It was a character recalibration up there with Ed Miliband cutting a glass while chanting ‘seven sizzling sausages simmering slowly’ in diction Brian Sewell would consider ‘intimidating’.
Lord Greville Janner: a look at reporting on the beleaguered Labour peer.
Daily Mail: “Labour peer Lord Janner attended the House of Lords 634 times and voted 203 times even after his dementia diagnosis”
Alleged paedophile Lord Janner voted 203 times in the House of Lords even after he granted power of attorney to his children because of his dementia….
Why Survation and the Daily Mirror failed to publish the poll that showed the Conservatives on course for victory
The polls got it wrong. The Conservative Party won the General Election. But one poll you never saw was spot on-ish:
The polling firm Survation admitted that its final poll showed the Conservatives with a lead of 37 percent to 31 percent over the Labor Party – almost the exact final result.
Survation’s Damian Lyon’s explains:
We had flagged that we were conducting this poll to the Daily Mirror as something we might share as an interesting check on our online vs our telephone methodology, but the results seemed so “out of line” with all the polling conducted by ourselves and our peers – what poll commentators would term an “outlier” – that I “chickened out” of publishing the figures – something I’m sure I’ll always regret.
The Daily Mirror – that’s the Labour-supporting newspaper…
Lord Janner: A look at Labour peer Greville Janner and allegations that he abused children. He says he’s innocent.
Hinkley Times: “Lord Janner U-turn urged by victims’ lawyers”
Well, they would want a change in the ruling that says Genenr is too ill to stand trial. Their view is predictable. A criminal lawyer without a trial is a useless thing.
Another law firm representing alleged victims of Lord Janner has written to Britain’s most senior prosecutor in a bid to overturn the decision not to bring the former MP to trial over child sex abuse claims.
That’s Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders.
Peter Garsden, whose firm is representing three clients in a civil child abuse claim against Lord Janner, has said he wants Ms Saunders to clarify the reasons for her decision by disclosing the various reports which supported it.
Transparency is all. But she has been pretty clear already.
Liz Dux, specialist abuse lawyer at Slater and Gordon, said her firm had written to the DPP to formally request a review of the decision not to go ahead with a prosecution. Ms Dux said all her clients want is “the opportunity to give their evidence and to be heard”.
That can’t be all that they want, can it? You can be heard in the media, where you can also be judged. But you can’t be proven right.
Mr Garsden said the decision not to bring criminal charges in relation to nine victims in spite of the CPS stating there was enough evidence to merit a prosecution had left his clients “outraged”. Mr Garsden added: “We are considering the possibility of judicial review.”
Outrage we can understand.
He is now requesting documentation relating to the criminal investigations into the 86-year-old peer, and also details of the medical reports and legal opinions sought by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) prior to the announcement of its decision on April 16.
The lawyer has asked for CPS agreement to obtain his own report on Lord Janner’s mental capacity, and wants confirmation there was indeed sufficient evidence to bring criminal charges.
How likely is it that Janner’s health will be tested by representatives fo the alleged victims? The DPP is neutral. The lawyers are not.
In his letter, Mr Garsden has said:
“We would like to see all documents touching and concerning the decision not to prosecute… We wish to discount the validity of an argument that your decision is open to judicial review… Accordingly, the more evidence and documentation you can send to us, in order to justify the decision, the better… We would also like to see all documents surrounding the various attempted, but failed, investigations into Janner in the past.”
Yes. Those past documetns – such as they are – are vital.
Denied a day in court, one alleged victim speaks out.
Hinckley man Hamish Baillie waived his right to anonymity to speak out on his alleged abuse at the hands of Janner. The 47-year-old told the Daily Mail he was molested by Lord Janner during a game of hide-and-seek when he was a 15-year-old resident of a children’s home.
What 15-year-old plays hide and seek with a middle-aged man? Bit odd, no? But we don’t know for certain why, who, what and where because the judiciary won’t alaow the claism to be tested in a court of law.
Hinkley Times: “Lord Janner: Why did the the CPS decide not to prosecute and what are the options for the alleged victims now?”
What can his alleged victims do next?
Defending herself from intense scrutiny, Ms Saunders said: “If somebody wants to challenge my decision, I’m not afraid. The proper way to challenge it is through the right to review or judicial review.”
The law is the law.
Under the CPS’ Victims’ Code, introduced in 2013, the alleged victims have a right to challenge such decisions through a review by a prosecutor who was not involved in the original case. If that does not satisfy victims then they can seek a further independent review.
Finally, the alleged victims could seek a judicial review, which does not assess whether the decision was right or wrong but rather if the process leading to the decision was lawful.
What can the Goddard inquiry do in this case?
Nothing save for a spot of PR.
Justice Lowell Goddard, who heads up the parliamentary inquiry into child sex abuse, has announced she will look at the allegations and how institutions acted, probing whether there was any establishment cover up.
While she cannot determine Lord Janner is guilty, her inquiry can call witnesses and alleged victims, make findings of fact about the allegations surrounding them and publish them in public.
Meanwhile, Lord Janner’s name is being erased.
Daily Telegraph: “Israeli school removes plaque honouring Lord Janner, the peer accused of sexual abuse. The plaque honouring the Labour peer at the school in Maalot Tarshiha in Israel’s northern Galilee region was removed. The peer’s family deny the abuse allegations”
How can it be restored if there is no trial?
The Herald: “Calls for review of Lord Janner child sex abuse case”
NEARLY 400 politicians have backed calls for a reversal of the decision not to prosecute Lord Greville Janner over sex abuse allegations. The move follows claims by an alleged victim that he was subjected to serious sexual assaults by Labour peer in Scotland….
The list, which was published by the investigative journalism website Exaro prior to the election, has12 SNP politicians including newly elected MPs Alan Brown, Douglas Chapman, Martin Docherty, Drew Hendry, Paul Monaghan, Roger Mullin, John Nicolson and Tommy Sheppard. Also included is Angus MacNeil, who has been SNP MP for the Western Isles since 2005.
Brown, who now represents Kilmarnock and Loudoun, said: “Regardless of the situation there should always be justice for victims.”
Of course there should be justice for victims. That’s stating the bleedin’ obvious. It’s harder to get justice for alleged victims.
Nicolson, the newly-elected MP for East Dunbartonshire said: “I think the evidence needs to be examined in court – and believe the victims deserve to be heard.”
It all deserves to be heard in court. Now let’s join the dots:
Jon Bird, operations manager for the National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC), said they had been aware of allegations about Janner for a number of years, but could not divulge details to protect the confidentiality of victims.
“Allegations about Lord Janner have been made by many people in many different parts of the country, for a very long time,” he said.
It’s the longevity that suggests cover ups. The longevity is key. What we need tio knwo is who around now was also around then. We have the alleged victims, the alleged perpretator deemed too ill to understand ant trial and we have the police.
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “The investigation of child abuse, whenever or wherever it has taken place, continues to be a top priority for Police Scotland. This has been highlighted by the launch of the National Child Abuse Investigation Unit last month.
“We would urge any victim of a sexual crime to contact police. All reports are thoroughly investigated by dedicated officers, who provide specialist support to victims and target offenders to bring them to justice.”
But they say they did contact the police years ago. And the police did nothing. Which amneks us wonder if it’s the alleged offence that’s change or spinning of it by an elite under the cosh.
A woman attacked by robbers who targeted lone women has called for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to be better monitored after she claims prosecutors handled her case so poorly it felt ‘like being mugged a second time.’
Barbara Cahalane and her sister Patricia were victims of the gang dubbed ‘the Nappy Valley Muggers’ because they targeted women with children in affluent districts of south London.
Ms Calahane said she had to pressure the CPS at every turn to prosecute the gang. She says that following her experience and recent rows over CPS rulings such as the decision not to prosecute Lord Janner, she believes there should be a watchdog overseeing the work of prosecutors.
Janner has become a symbol of mistrut in high places.
Daily Telegraph: “Parents of autistic man criticise decision to prosecute him – George Ostle’s parents say if Lord Janner was not fit to stand trial then neither was their autistic son who has the mental age of a ten-year-old”
The parents of an autistic man prosecuted after lashing out at a carer have criticised the Crown Prosecution Service for bringing the case, insisting he should have been treated in the same way as Lord Janner. George Ostle, 22, was found guilty of striking a female care worker at his residential home after becoming distressed and confused following a change in his medical routine. But his parents said he should never have been charged because he has a mental age of ten and was unable to understand to legal process.
Not the same thing at all. Janner is ruled to be no risk to anyone.
Such are the facts…
Everything you needed to know about how stupid the high-brow newspapers think tabloid readers, everyone on the web and the youth are is encapsulated in an Independent headline.
This interview with Russell Brand could well win Ed Miliband the next General Election
Undaunted by the glaringly obvious conclusion that Russell Brand’s influence over the electorate is on a par with John Snow’s socks, the Indy tells its readers that Ed Miliband’s walk through his home echo chamber really mattered to the more go-head members of society:
Ed Miliband’s attempt to break the log jam by making a late-night dash to Russell Brand’s flat was the one moment which left traditional media flat-footed. His interview on Brand’s Trews YouTube channel has been watched by 1.2 million people, many of whom would never consider watching Newsnight.
How many of those 1.2 million were journalists on the social media news beat is possibly in the high hundreds of thousands. And mention of the BBC’s post-Jeremy Paxman, post- Jimmy Savile Newsnight is apt. That show’s desperation to attract a younger audience also featured the preening, anti-intellectual Brand, this time talking with the show’s Evan Davis.
It was an excruciating verbal dad-dance of BBC-sanctioned rebellion.
Brendan O’Neill saw it all:
Hilariously, the very same people who accuse the Murdoch papers of brainwashing their readers into voting for the Tories – such undiluted snobbery – believed that a celeb with a webcam and a lively Twitter presence could simply click his fingers and get the hordes voting Labour. But he couldn’t. And it isn’t hard to see why. It’s because people aren’t idiots. They want substance, seriousness, not finger-wagging gags about EVIL TORIES and instructions to ‘save Britain’ by giving the nod to Ed.
Forget middle-aged, middle-brow, David Icke-lite Russell Brand. The cool-hunting adults should invite Jake Yapp on instead – he’s cheaper and funnier:
How do readers of The Guardian live with a Tory victory in the General Eleection? That question is rhetorical The answer is: draw faces on fruit.