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Reviews | Anorak - Part 3

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We don’t just report off-beat news, breaking news and digest the best and worst of the news media analysis and commentary. We give an original take on what happened and why. We add lols, satire, news photos and original content.

Police watchdog investigates Met’s links to Indian hackers

The Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating an anonymous tip-off that the London Metropolitan Police’s National Domestic Extremism and Disorder Intelligence Unit asked Indian police to hire hackers to break into the private communications of hundreds of British people, including journalists, Greenpeace and Green Party peer Baroness Jenny Jones.

PCC deputy chairman Sarah Green appeals:

“This will be a complex investigation given the potential involvement of foreign participants.

“We would like to hear from the officer who brought these allegations to light or any other officers or police staff who may be able to provide information of use to the IPCC investigation.”

The Met Police said: “The IPCC made the Metropolitan Police Service aware of anonymous allegations concerning the access of personal data and requested the matter referred to them by the MPS. This has been done.

“The MPS is aware that the IPCC is carrying out an independent investigation.”

Spotter: BBC

Posted: 15th, May 2017 | In: Reviews, Technology | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Hate crime police investigate Caitlyn Jenner heckler who yelled ‘Oi, Bruce, get your dick out!’

It certainly wasn’t polite to heckle Cailtyn Jenner, formerly Bruce Jenner of Kardashian fame, but a hate crime?

The Mail reports:

A photographer shouted at Caitlyn Jenner ‘Oi Bruce, get your dick out’ as she left the British LGBT Awards in London.

Police have launched a hate crime investigation after the incident on Friday night.

 

CAitlyn Jenner dick

Don’t be a dick

 

This is a police matter.

Jenner was a guest at the ceremony, where she received a Loud And Proud trophy following her transition from Bruce Jenner in 2015, which she has spoken about publicly.

As she left the event at the Grand Connaught Rooms in central London an onlooker hurled transphobic abuse at her until she got into a car

The Press are keen to ramp up the horror: which was  “terrifying” and a “vile attack”.

 

Caitlyn Jenner heckler who yelled 'Oi, Bruce, get your dick out!'

 

Bit nuts, no? No pun intended. Oh, go on, then, yes it was.

Unless we all support Caitlyn Jenner the police will nick us. You are a social pariah, someone unfit to live in a law-abiding polite society if you don’t agree that Caitlyn is an inspirational figure. And history is being rewritten. Bruce never existed. The Guardian told us that Caitlyn has “always been a woman”, including when she was “fathering” children. Those sperm, were Caitlyn’s and they came out of a… Well, it wasn’t a vagina. But it might be a crime to to say was it was.

 

Posted: 14th, May 2017 | In: Key Posts, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The courtroom artist captured only the police

The women accused of being Britain’s “first all-female terror gang” are in the dock at Westminster magistrate’s court. They are all charged with conspiracy to murder. The judge asked both women who appeared in veils that covered their faces to lift their veils. One, says the Mail, lifted hers “for a few seconds”, but the other did not.

What is telling is that the Mail, Express, Star (front page), the Sun and Mirror all feature the court artist’s sketch.

If court is to be a place where getting to the truth is all, should not the accused be encouraged to be at ease, and that includes dressing as they would in accordance with their culture?

Next stop for the ladies is the Old Bailey, where men and women in horsehair wigs and long cover-all black gowns will judge them.

 

accused terrorists veil in court accused terrorists veil in court accused terrorists veil in court accused terrorists veil in court

accused terrorists vei

Posted: 12th, May 2017 | In: Reviews, Tabloids | Comment (1) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Sign language woman nails it at Snoop Dogg concert

To Snoop Dogg’s live performance of 50 Cent’s P.I.M.P in New Orleans, where the sign language accompaniment is superb. Take it away, Holly Maniatty.

 

 

Spotter: Pickle

Posted: 10th, May 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Bloody Corbyn And Brexit: Voters’ deliver candid message to Labour

It turns out that having rubbished the electorate for being thick and voting the wrong way in the referendum, when you go asking for them to vote for you you get told to naff off.

The former leader of the Labour group on Leicestershire council, Robert Sharp, is upset. He tells the Leicester Mercury:

“I am personally disappointed but we saw it coming. I have said before that it has been tough on the doorstep. We have struggled to get local issues noticed.

“All we have had back at us is Brexit and ‘bloody Corbyn’. I don’t want to sound like a bitter candidate who has just lost his seat and is trying to blame someone else, but Jeremy Corbyn has had a negative impact on this campaign.”

Jeremy Corbyn brexit

Posted: 7th, May 2017 | In: Politicians, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


This 1984 Dune Sandworm made for an uncomfortable sex toy

Item of the day: this 1984 Dune Sandworm Toy. Get a load of those teeth!

 

1984 Dune Sandworm Toy

 

A fremen poised to “ride” the beast as it rolled its open scale towards its highest point could literally mount the worm. As long as the scales remained open, the sandworm would not submerge.

 

dune sandworm toy

 

Spotter: JWZ

Posted: 6th, May 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Green Left Weekly: ‘British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has done remarkably well’

jeremy corbyn the green paper

 

Australian publication Green Left Weekly aims to deliver “news and ideas the mainstream media won’t”. For instance, it’s the only paper we can find that says “British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has done remarkably well since Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May’s April 19 announcement of general elections on June 8.”

Green Left Weekly reported that on May 4. Two days on and the poisonous mainstream media has a different view on Corbyn’s performance.

 

council elections theresa may corbyn newspapers

 

Spotter: Tim Worstall

Posted: 6th, May 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Politicians, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


In 2009 the Sun and Sky told Gordon Brown to grab the TV debate or else

UK's First Ever Leader's Debate

 

Compare and contrast the the Sun’s view on televised leadership debates. Tory leaders Theresa May will not be taking part in one.

April 21 2017:

THERESA May would make mincemeat of Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron on TV. She is the only credible option as PM, as would be blindingly obvious to anyone watching. But The Sun doesn’t really care how much or how little TV she does if she thinks her election campaign is better spent touring marginal constituencies. We DO object to self-important broadcasters acting like their debates are a cornerstone of our democracy…

Broadcasters who try to shame the PM by “empty-chairing” her in her absence will be playing with fire. How would that remotely be impartial?

2009 (via Private Eye):

…if Iran and Afghanistan can have TV debates  between party leaders, so can we. David Cameron and Nick Clegg are backing a debate before we vote next year. There can be no hiding place for Gordon Brown.

 

leaders debate Sky the sun gordon brown

 

In September 2009, Sky TV launched a petition for a televised leaders’ debate.

We, the undersigned, support the campaign for a leaders’ debate.

Sky News has launched a national campaign calling for a live television debate as part of the General Election, the first of its kind in Britain.

John Ryley, the head of Sky News, has written to the Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Conservative leader David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg to invite them to take part.

He told them faith in politics and politicians has been shaken, and a debate during the forthcoming election campaign would offer a unique opportunity to re-engage disillusioned voters.

“There is a chance here, not just to do something that has never been done, but to energise an electorate, to reconnect with the millions of people who have been alienated by politics and the way it is so often covered, to achieve something that is truly democratic,” Mr Ryley wrote.

Sky News is calling on readers and viewers who support the campaign to sign the online petition here.

 

This was supported by Sky News’ Adam Boulton telling Sun readers that “the people want it, politics needs it and Gordon Brown should grab the opportunity with both hands.”

Such are the facts.

Posted: 5th, May 2017 | In: Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Google Translate News: Moscow hack gives Manchester’s fat slags and ‘disgusting’ gays a thrashing

If anyone is going to call British women fat slappers and out homosexuals it’ll be the British press. So when Alisa Titko, a writer for Komsomolskaya Pravda, ridiculed British women and lambasted Manchester for allowing gays to be loving in public, that champion of feminism and homosexual rights the Daily Telegraph was aghast. Chris Graham alerted the paper’s readers to Titko’s “homophobic rant”.

Manchester is a city of “fat people” and “debauchery”, a columnist for Russia’s largest selling newspaper wrote in a homophobic article that described the sight of gay people as “disgusting”.

 

gay putin clown

 

He relays Titko’s words – words she wrote in Russian – to English speaking readers:

Having recently visited Manchester, she wrote: “It is true that there are many fat people in Manchester. Local young women don’t mind when fat hangs down from their stomach and body – and does not fit into their jeans. Whatever, when they go to a nightclub they put on tight fit leggings and mini-dresses.”

Do all East European columnists speak like Alan Partridge’s East European lover?

 

 

Here’s more from Alisha Titko (trans: Alice My-Tit):

“In Manchester there is a whole part of the city for gay people. Nobody told me about it, I have found it myself when I was walking around the town. There is even a plate there saying ‘Gay Village’. It is the most popular place for such couples, there are cafés and clubs there with small rainbow flags. Of course, a young man with a girl can also go into the gay club but they should know that if somebody approaches them, it maybe not just for a chat but for something more deep. Of course, it is hardly possible that men turn gay because girls are too fat and non-sexual. But it can influence it too.”

Who says the mainstream press is dying on its arse?

Over on Komsomolskaya Pravda, you can read Titko’s words in her native Russian. But it’s more fun to shred it through Google Translate. So I did. And it gives us:

Moscow does not need gayest street in Manchester

Look out for the claim that a quarter of men in Manchester are gay, a bride can marry a butterfly and things can go “deep” with just a friendly ‘Wotcha cocker!”:

From his friends in Moscow more often I hear that to homosexual couples should be treated more tolerant. Like, people love each other, and what’s the difference … Let. But we should not talk about it openly, to go around the city by the handles and kissing passionately. Shockingly so. And I never understand. Couple – people of different sexes. Historically, only men and women have children. These are the basic things. Understandable. But here, gays and lesbians have found a way – the children they give birth to a surrogate mother or take the baby to an orphanage.

And on such a quiet talk in the newspapers, on television. But in my head does not fit, when I know that some of our idle singers and actors (never would have thought!), And do not dream of the traditional family, and because they are better men. As a girl I was upset, their female fans, probably, too. And such relations are not only in show business, there are gays and lesbians among stylists, managers, and flight attendants. Yes, and no matter the profession. But it is becoming so commonplace that already scares. Where rolling part of Russian society? Why is it more openly demonstrated, and even citing that in Europe – is the norm.

I saw these your rules. In Manchester, for example, there are a quarter of gay men. And about it I whispered to no one in your ear, I found it myself, walking around town. At the beginning of the quarter even have a label “gay village”. It is like this place for couples. They then its cafes, clubs with small rainbow flags, even in Ukraine, the rainbow will be greater when dokrasyat Arch of Friendship of Peoples. Of course, Manchester geyskoy clubs start up and a guy with a girl. But the single boys and girls need to understand that it may be appropriate to meet and not to just talk, and for more in-depth.

Gays and lesbians in the evenings, not hiding emotions, rest not only in private clubs, and even open out onto the veranda. On the walls causing posters. For example, kissing Batman and Superman.

– Do you realize that we have something going with you staring, and they may think that we are not just friends, – told me Anna.

– Well, let’s say that we are not a lesbian, if that – I said to her friend.

At one of the tables was a wedding of two rather large girls, one was a veil, and on the other – the butterfly. We sat next to their mothers and girlfriends. At another table sat a man in a leather mask and pop out of her tongue to lick his partner’s eye. Ahead was a pretty nice guy in stylish jeans and jacket. With him is another. And how I would like to believe that they are just tourists and come here by chance as we are. But no. A friend took his belt and with a playful smile, pulled to itself, and then a couple came in one of the cafes.

– Yes, they are full of women that men are simply disgusting – throw in our conversation with a friend friend Anton. – You’ve seen the same as fast food and potato they eat. A beer of any drink huge glasses. As they say, the result is obvious.

Full in Manchester really quite a lot. And local girls not steamed that fat hanging from the abdomen, flanks , does not fit into jeans. In the clubs, they still pull tight leggings and dresses-mini. Of course, it is unlikely that men become gay because of the fact that the girl thick , not sexy. Although this, too, can influence.

– How good that in Moscow there are no streets. Well, now imagine. Come on Tverskaya , svarachivaem on Chamberlain and Grand Dmitrovka men in leather pants and whips. Oh, no – I can tell your friends after we leave the gayest village. – And if not banned gay parades, all these “free” men in pink, with arrows and bare nipples would be, for example, on the New Arbat.

– How to go there after some ordinary people? – disgust ask about Anna.

– Even so?

I can already imagine that some would say the familiar: “That’s not you they offend They are different This is a limitation of freedom….” Yes, what is freedom? Mom as a child gave a little belt. It is a measure of promiscuity. This is necessary precisely to hide, and not to put on display, and even demand to marry. I like the approach of registry offices in Russia . They say: “The law stipulates that marriage is between a man and a woman, period.”. And what’s more there gay people in Russia – it is bad and shameful.

It’s bad parenting parents, not inspected, not explained. And then the son grows and the mother says, you became a grandmother, but I do not have a wife. Or: “Mom, men – all goats, I love Lena “. Even after five years, they will lead their children to school. And they ask: “Why are the other two parents?” And what to say? There are different family? But the main question: what generation we are waiting for?

PS Let’s be Russian. Create a normal family. Have children in wedlock. And do not confuse love with debauchery.

It’s not fake news – it’s The News According to Google Translate.

Posted: 5th, May 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Key Posts, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Map reveals white Europeans’ views on blacks

Map reveals white Europeans' views on blacks

 

How racist against blacks are white Europeans? You could simply look at the European Union whose immigration policy is firmly shut to those beyond its borders. If you’re a dark-skinned African refugee, the EU will become a fortress and pay a lot keep you out.

One other way of looking at white Europeans’ views of blacks is to look at this map. Since 2002 Harvard University’s Project Implicit has invited visitors to take its “implicit association test” (IAT), a rapid-response task which measures how easily you can pair items from different categories.

To create this new map, we used data from a version of the test which presents white or black faces and positive or negative words. The result shows how easily our minds automatically make the link between the categories – what psychologists call an “implicit racial attitude”.

Each country on the map is coloured according to the average score of test takers from that country. Redder countries show higher average bias, bluer countries show lower average bias, as the scale on the top of the map shows…

No country had an average score below zero, which would reflect positive associations with blackness. In fact, none had an average score that was even close to zero, which would reflect neither positive nor negative racial associations.

Overall, we have scores for 288,076 white Europeans, collected between 2002 and 2015, with sample sizes for each country shown on the left-hand side.

Spotter: The Conversation

 

Posted: 3rd, May 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Vox revels in bigotry on Bret Stephens joining the New York Times

Vox gets very nasty on the New York Times hiring Bret Stephens:

Earlier this month, the New York Times hired conservative Bret Stephens, longtime writer for the Wall Street Journal, to join its editorial page.

It really shouldn’t have.

Because:

For one thing, though the paper defends the hire in the name of opinion diversity, Stephens is a very familiar sort of establishment conservative — a cosmopolitan, well-educated, reflexively pro-Israel war hawk…

Whatever could they be driving at?

But if that;s not nasty enough, the article continues:

It takes a particular sort of insularity to hire a pro-war, anti-Trump white guy…

One part of this hatchet job notes: “Getting hired has not stopped Stephens from making lazy arguments.”

Irony be damned.

 

Posted: 2nd, May 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


How to survive an armed robbery by Jimmy John’s manager Tuker Murray

Tuker Murray Jimmy Johns robbery Kansas

 

To Kansas, where a robbery is going down. The local police tells all:

At 9:15 p.m. April 26, 2017, officers with the KCPD were dispatched to the location at 3900 Broadway Blvd. in regard to an armed robbery. An unknown black male wearing a light blue hooded sweatshirt entered the restaurant, placed an order, then pointed a gun at the cashier demanding money from the register.

Meanwhile, all eyes are on the server. Just chill….

 

 

The mellow dude behind the counter is Tuker Murray, 24-year-old assistant manager at a Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches in Kansas City, MO. Here he is talking to KCTV5:

 

Posted: 1st, May 2017 | In: Key Posts, Reviews, Strange But True | Comments (2) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


When it’s ok to be anti-Semitic and wear a headscarf

Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen – the final ‘d’ is silent, so I’ll leave it off – says all Austrian women should wear a headscarf. This will help Muslims feel comfortable and to battle prejudice, he reasons.

“If Islamophobia continues to spread,” he told a room full of students, “the day will come when we will have to ask all women to wear headscarves. All of them, in solidarity with those who [wear them] for religious reasons. This isn’t too far-fetched.”

Van der Bellen continued, adding that he remembered a story about some non-Jewish Danes wearing the Star of David during the German occupation of Denmark in World War II.

Alex, mate, they did that to counter the censors, bigots, meddlers and murderers not because they were forced to on pain of law. Wearing a Star of David when it could get you abused, raped and killed by the invaders’ enforcers is an act of bravery. If you force people to wear the veil and view those courageous Danes as your inspiration, you will celebrate freedom by doing exactly the opposite. And as for reducing a symbol of conservative religious beliefs to a sign of your own liberal views, well, good luck with that.

The Washington Post adds:

The Austrian president seems to have been surprised by the scandal. “We should be happy if we don’t have bigger problems than the question of the headscarf,” he told reporters during a visit to Slovakia this week. “I am not a friend of the headscarf, but there is freedom of expression in Austria.”

Not always. The JTA reports:

An Austrian woman who questioned the Holocaust was found guilty of violating an Austrian law that makes Holocaust denial illegal.

The woman, 53, was given a suspended jail sentence and fined $1,280 by a court in the western Austrian city of Feldkirch on Friday, the Associated Press reported.

She criticized a post on Facebook which showed a German soccer team commemorating the liberation of the Auschwitz Nazi camp, in which she accused the team of “spreading lies,” according to the AP.

During a search of her home a sign was discovered over her toilet reading: “This Hitlerine needs a clean latrine.” It also is illegal in Austria to praise the Nazi era.

Nasty. False. But to criminalise an expression of bigotry that makes liars of the millions murdered and praises their killers suggests Austrian lawmakers do not have much faith in their own people to hold ignorance and racism up to the light. Bellen is wrong, then. Freedom of expression is not sacrosanct in Austria.

Undeterred, Bellen moved on:

In a statement posted to his Facebook page, the president’s office attempted to explain the context of his statement, noting that a student had asked about whether a ban on headscarves would shut some women out of the labor market.

The president was talking about “the stigma of headscarved women,” the statement said, and the president did agree that in some specific circumstances a headscarf might be prohibited but that other religious symbols should be prohibited, too, in those circumstances. The president was also concerned about “racism from the other side,” the statement said, pointing to the example of a Muslim cabdriver who refuses to accept Orthodox Jews as passengers.

Racism from the other side? No, it’s just racism.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 1st, May 2017 | In: Key Posts, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The NHS joins the goodly war on sugar

The mantra ‘Sugar is bad’ has been drummed in. It’s a good message, morally right, even. Sugar is linked to all manner of health curses, not least of all fat, which as we’ve been told is a social ill that costs the thin lots of money to treat and blocks our daylight. Fat people are ambulatory sugar turds, composite blends of ready-mealed scum and pig foreskins bloated on day-glow sugary drinks that mean on any given day just ten fat people seep more toxic gas than a stricken BP tanker. Indeed, if fat people would all hurry up and die, crematoria could turned into sources of renewable energy. Like being poor, being fat is your fault, you useless porker.

So the fat are stigmatised. And that’s good because now they can now they are wrong. It wasn’t genes. It was greed and apathy. Fat is not jolly as it was in the 1950s. Fat is weak and needy. And the thin, wealthy and knowing are here to help you to slim. And they will do this by banning sugar.

The NHS has moved to prevent companies operating stores on its premises – WH Smith, Marks & Spencer, Greggs, Subway, Costa and mote – hawking too much sugar. All companies must reduce sales of sales of sugary drinks to 10 per cent of total drink sales. This censoring – or as hipsters terms it, editing – includes cutting out fruit juice, which, as Rob Lyons points out, was once one of our fabled “five a day“. All vendors must agree to the proposal or have all sales of sugared drinks banned.

Lyons says the latest ban reduces “our freedom to choose what we want. It is an attempt to put health above any other consideration – like whether or not drinks actually taste nice, for example.”

The message is that people are too stupid and gullible to work out that sugar and inactivity leads to fat. The stuff must be removed from view lest these mentally-negligible dolts yield to temptation, as surely they must.

Very soon sugared drinks will be sold behind the counter; packing will feature pictures of morbidly obese men with their pendulous moobs trapped in zimmer frames and gargantuan women say side by side the Essex floodplains as a primary Thames Flood Barrier.

Having told you for years that fat is not your fault, but a condition that can be cured on a reality TV make-over show and the therapist’s couch, the knowing now tell you that is is your fault but you’re too thick to help yourself.

The one consistent view is that you are not clever enough to make your own choices in life. And the great news is that there is no end of illiberal know-alls willing and able to help.

Posted: 28th, April 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Ex-copper Number 3429 shares this thought on Madeleine McCann and Facebook’s chances of finding her

The Sun has some Madeleine McCann tenth anniversary news. Across two pages, the paper asks “Could Facebook find Madeleine?” It hasn’t found her so far, and the site’s been up and running for a few years now. But it could. Could is the new buzzword in media and police reporting on the investigation. Based on the premise that anything could happen, we’d say ‘yes’, Facebook could find Madeleine McCann. We hope it does.

 

Maddie Mccann facebook

 

And while we’re on it, you can get odds on all sort of things that could happen. You could win the lottery  – the odds are around 1 in 13,983,816. You just need to buy a ticket and take the plunge. So “retired detective” Mick Neville is the latest to buy his ticket for the ‘Our Maddie’ charabanc for retired coppers – destination: media – and delved into Facebook. He now “believes the site’s cutting edge face recognition software could be the key to finding here”. The detective reckons that if Madeleine McCann is using Facebook to chat to mates and spread fake news about Hillary Clinton, she stands a better chance to being found than if she not on the web. Moreover, if her kidnappers or new parents are posting photos of her.

“If she is still alive – and there is no proof she is not,” says Neville, “then by using a combined tactic of technology and people with advanced facial recognition skills you could potentially find where Madeleine is today.” Yeah. Ten years of thinking went into that. And you can’t knock it for insight, precision and usefulness.

 

Maddie Mccann facebook

As the Met Police read the Sun and utter a collective ‘DANG!’ – and the press all race to copy the Sun’s story (see above) – we read if a DNA test that “could offer hope to investigators”. Called DNA17, the test “can produce a profile of a suspect from samples once deemed too small to analyse properly”. A “source close to” Kate McCann says the technology “seems to offer them real hope… If the test could be used to help solve the case it seems only sensible that UK and Portuguese police consider having he crime scene samples retested.”

Sounds right. But how new is the test? It’s new – but not breaking-news new. The CPS tells us:

DNA-17 is the term that has been adopted to describe the next generation of DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid) profiling methodologies to be utilised by the National DNA Database (NDNAD).

Currently, samples are profiled using the SGMPlus methodology, but from 24 July 2014, samples will be profiled using a DNA-17 profiling methodology.

News from July 2014 is news in April 2017.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 27th, April 2017 | In: Madeleine McCann, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Tim Farron finds his backbone and blocks David Ward over ‘antisemitic’ comments

In today’s Sun we read that the LibDems have approved David Ward as their candidate for Bradford East. Ward lost the seat to Labour in 2015. Ward is the man who likened “the Jews” to the Nazis, the paper reminds us.

But just as we started to think there is no exit for such nastiness we learn that LibDem leader Tim Farron has sacked Ward. Farron says Ward’s comments about Jews were “deeply offensive, wrong and antisemitic”.

HURRAH! Finally one of them gets booted out. Other politicos accused of anti-Semitism get suspended. “I believe in a politics that is open, tolerant and united. David Ward is unfit to represent the party and I have sacked him,” said Farron.

 

Corbyn anti-semitism

 

But, as the Guardian points out, the sacking only occurred after Theresa May criticised Ward’s selection following a question from Eric Pickles during prime minister’s questions. Pickles asked if May “shares my disgust that a former member of this house criticised by the home affairs select committee for antisemitism has been selected for Bradford East for the Liberal Democrats?”

May said voters would be “disappointed to see the Liberal Democrats re-adopt a candidate with a questionable record on antisemitism”. The paper notes:

Ward has also said he would be willing to fire rockets from Gaza into Israel and praised the Labour MP Naz Shah after she was suspended by her party for antisemitic posts on Facebook.

Naz wasn’t kicked out. She was suspended. She was re-educated. She discovered that anti-Semitism is a form of racism. Shah, the Labour MP for Bradford West – what is about that place? – delivered an apology, albeit with a sympathetic backstory.

“The language I used was anti-Semitic, it was offensive,” she said. “What I did was I hurt people and the language that was the clear anti-Semitic language, which I didn’t know at the time, was when I said, ‘The Jews are rallying.'”

She then went on a journey:

Ms Shah said she had been on a learning journey in recent months and had received “amazing compassion” from the Jewish community. “I didn’t get anti-Semitism as racism,” said Ms Shah. “I had never come across it. I think what I had was an ignorance.”

With her abhorrent views unchecked, Naz had made it all the way to be a front-bench advisor in Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet. Until she was exposed in the media, at no point did Shah think anti-Semitism could be wrong, let alone racist. Is that because everyone around her was as ignorant as she was? Or is it because anti-Semitism is rife in Labour, which is a safe space to be an anti-Jewish bigot? We can give ink to our thoughts on polling day.

Says Farron: “I don’t select our individual candidates and nor should I. But let me be clear, I won’t tolerate antisemitism in my party. David Ward has been disciplined in the past and if he or anyone else makes antisemitic remarks in this campaign I will expect the party to act quickly and decisively, as we did when we suspended a candidate in Luton South yesterday …Ashuk Ahmed, was suspended over Facebook posts that compared Zionism to the Nazis.”

Don’t panic, lads. You can always go back to school and stand as a representative for the NUS.

The National Union of Students (NUS) is embroiled in a fresh anti-Semitism row after three candidates holding or running for positions on its executive committee were revealed to have made offensive comments.

In online posts seen by The Independent, one current member of the union’s National Executive Council shared a video mocking Jews as having big noses and being tight with money, while another publicly suggested Jewish people are tight-fisted and said he wanted to destroy Israel.

A third, who is seeking a position on the union’s executive in elections being held this week, wrote an offensive Twitter message referring to Jews and using the phrase “Heil Hitler”.

Good job the Left has no issue with Jews. We know this because Labour peer Shami Chakrabarti told us there is no anti-Semitism in Labour Party.

Vote now. And vote often.

Posted: 26th, April 2017 | In: Key Posts, Politicians, Reviews | Comments (2) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: the Met’s 10th anniversary PR exercise ‘COULD’ be news

Madeleine McCann: 10th anniversary news round-up.

The Daily Mail (front page): “MADDIE POLICE CHASING ‘CRITICAL LEAD'”.

 

maddie mccann daily mail

 

That Madeleine McCann remains front-page news 10 years after her vanishing – and after ten years of no evidence of what happened to her emerging – is remarkable. As for the news, we learn that police are “chasing a critical leader”. How critical? Well, it “could crack the Madeleine McCann case”. So only potentially critical, then.

What of the “mysterious new clues”, then, that “could explain why the three-year-old vanished in May 2007″?

We hear from Mark Rowley, a Metropolitan Police assistant commissioner, who tells us that the “latest lead” is “worth pursuing”. He says: “It could provide an answer, but until we’ve gone though it I won’t know whether we are going to get there or not.”

That’s three “coulds” on the front page alone. So much for the “critical lead”. Rowley says – without irony – “I’m not going to discuss…because it is very much a live investigation”.

The Mirror makes “COULD” part of its front-page lead. It could just as easily says ‘Could Not”.

daily mirror maddy mccann

 

Millions of pounds invested in the search for answers and still none are forthcoming. Ten years of looking and the Met are in full PR mode. They “don’t want to spoil it by putting titbits of information our publicly,” says Rowley as he chucks a tasty morsel to the Press. Indeed, this isn’t a hunt for alleged VIP sex criminals. There will be no televised raids and no airport arrests. So can Rowley tell us anything? “We don’ have evidence telling us if Madeleine is alive or dead.” says Rowley, “but as a team we are realistic about what we might be dealing with.”

As the Met gets realistic about theories, the Mail moves on to look at the parents. Over pages 4 and 15, we get “10 YEARS OF PAIN”.

Pages 14-15: “Maddie’s bedroom is piled high with a decade of unopened gifts. Kate’s given up work to care or their twins – while Gerry’s now a world-renowned heart doctor. As police reveal a ‘significant’ new line of inquiry… 10 YEARS OF HOPE AND HEARTBREAK”.

What a parent looking after their own children has to do with the case is moot, moreover the husband’s job. But this story always was laced with a middle-class thread. The blonde child. The medical professional parents. The upmarket holiday camp destination. It all overshadows the fact that police only might have a significant new line of enquiry. We don’t know. They don’t know. All we know is that Kate McCann is a “fitness fanatic” who “finds finds comfort in daily work-outs at he gym”; Gerry McCann “was recently praised for saving the life of former footballer Alan Birchenall after he suffered a heart attack and ‘died’  for seven minutes”; and “they have coped in different ways with the tragedy”.

 

daily express maddy mccann

 

Daily Express (front page): “VITAL NEWS CLUES IN MADDY HUNT.”

No. They could be critical clues. They might not be of any value at all. The Express notes that Operation Grange, the police investigation, has cost £11m.

Page 5: “Yard reveals ‘critical lines of inquiry’ in Maddy case.” It did. And it didn’t. The Met mentioned the leads and then said they were secret.

The paper does have some news, though. We learn that in 2013, “officers identified four people as possible suspects but they have now been ruled out.”

The Telegraph prefers to lead with a question: “Madeleine McCann: Are the police any closer to knowing the truth?” As Betteridge’s law of headlines states: “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.”

This is Mark Rowley’s statement in full – delivered to deadline. The Met calls it “AC Mark Rowley reflects on the tenth anniversary of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.” It reads like mixture of school report and therapeutic journey:

As an investigation team we are only too aware of the significance of dates and anniversaries. Whatever the inquiry, we want to get answers for everyone involved.

The disappearance of Madeleine McCann is no different in that respect but of course the circumstances and the huge public interest, make this a unique case for us as police officers to deal with. In a missing child inquiry every day is agony and an anniversary brings this into sharp focus. Our thoughts are with Madeleine’s family at this time – as it is with any family in a missing person’s inquiry – and that drives our commitment to do everything we can for her.

On 3rd May 2017, it will be 10 years since Madeleine vanished from her apartment in Praia Da Luz, a small town on the Algarve. In the immediate hours following her disappearance, an extensive search commenced involving the local police, community and tourists. This led to an investigation that has involved police services across Europe and beyond, experts in many fields, the world’s media and the public, which continues to this day. The image of Madeleine remains instantly recognisable in many countries across the world.

The Met’s dedicated team of four detectives, continues to work closely on the outstanding enquiries along with colleagues of the Portuguese Policia Judiciária. Our relationship with the Policia Judiciária is good. We continue to work together and this is helping us to move forward the investigation.

We don’t have evidence telling us if Madeleine is alive or dead. It is a missing person’s inquiry but as a team we are realistic about what we might be dealing with – especially as months turn to years.

Now is a time we can reflect on an investigation which captured an unprecedented amount of media coverage and interest. The enormity of scale and the complexity of such a case brings along its own challenges, not least learning to work with colleagues who operate under a very different legal system. The inquiry has been, and continues to be helped and supported by many organisations and individuals. We acknowledge the difference these contributions have made to the investigation and would like it known that we appreciate all the support we have and continue to receive.

Since the Met was instructed by the Home Office to review the case in 2011, we have reviewed all the material gathered from multiple sources since 2007. This amounted to over 40,000 documents out of which thousands of enquiries were generated. We continue to receive information on a daily basis, all of which is assessed and actioned for enquiries to be conducted.

We have appealed on four BBC Crimewatch programmes since April 2012. This included an age progression image which resulted in hundreds of calls about alleged sightings of Madeleine; an appeal for the identity of possibly relevant individuals through description or Efit; and information sought relating to suspicious behaviour or offences of burglary. These programmes collectively produced a fantastic response from the public. The thousands of calls and information enabled detectives to progress a number of enquiries. This was in addition to over 3,000 holiday photographs from the public in response to an earlier appeal.

The team has looked at in excess of 600 individuals who were identified as being potentially significant to the disappearance. In 2013 the team identified four individuals they declared to be suspects in the case. This led to interviews at a police station in Faro facilitated by the local Policia Judiciária and the search of a large area of wasteland which is close to Madeleine’s apartment in Praia Da Luz. The enquiries did not find any evidence to further implicate the individuals in the disappearance and so they are no longer subject of further investigation.

We will not comment on other parts of our investigation – it does not help the teams investigating to give a commentary on those aspects. I am pleased to say that our relationship with the Portuguese investigators is better than ever and this is paying dividends in the progress all of us are making.

We are often asked about funding and you can see that we are now a much smaller team. We know we have the funding to look at the focused enquiry we are pursuing.

Of course we always want information and we can’t rule out making new appeals if that is required. However, right now, new appeals or prompts to the public are not in the interest of what we are trying to achieve.

He says publicly.

As detectives, we will always be extremely disappointed when we are unable to provide an explanation of what happened. However the work carried out by Portuguese and Met officers in reviewing material and reopening the investigation has been successful in taking a number of lines of interest to their conclusion. That work has provided important answers.

Answers? But there was only ever one question: what happened to Madeleine McCann?

Right now we are committed to taking the current inquiry as far as we possibly can and we are confident that will happen. Ultimately this, and the previous work, gives all of us the very best chance of getting the answers – although we must, of course, remember that no investigation can guarantee to provide a definitive conclusion.

However the Met, jointly with colleagues from the Policia Judiciária continue the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann with focus and determination.

No progress, then. The Met is looking back – just as it always has done.

Posted: 26th, April 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Key Posts, Madeleine McCann, News, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Sexism row: Kim Kardashian’s arse takes on Angela Akins’ short skirt

“It’s Kim Kardashian as you’ve never seen her before.” throbs the Daily Star on its front page. “Wait until you see the rear view,” ploughs the Sun on its cover. Both tabloids lead with the same picture of Kim Kardashian in:

a) a burqa

b) an orgy

c) a Job Centre

d) a bikini

e) panto

It’s ‘d’, which is a disappointment for all of you who’ve seen Kim K. in a bikini more than you’ve seen your own feet.

 

Kim Kardashian the sun arse

 

 

As for the story, well, on Page 7 the Star dubs the reality TV star Kim “Lard-Ashian”, on account of her figure. The Sun calls it a “rear treat”.

One oddity about the Sun’s ogling is that on April 10 the paper was aghast at the BBC’s perceived sexism. In “SKIRTY OLD MAN”, the BBC’s golf commentator Peter Alliss is admonished for making “disgraceful” comments about the length of Masters winner Sergio Garcia’s fiancee’s skirt.

Paul Revoir writes:

Peter Alliss caused a sexism row by referring to the short skirt worn by golf hero Sergio Garcia’s fiancee… As images were shown of Angela Akins, 31, reacting to Sergio’s win, Alliss’s muffled voice was heard saying: “She’s got the shortest skirt on the campus”…

This is the latest in a string of sexism rows to engulf the long-serving commenter.

 

The Sun’s outrage was supported by no fewer than 6 photos of Angela Akins in her short skirt. Indeed, you can read about the BBC’s sexism alongside two stories based on photos of Kim in her bikini:

 

angela akins skirt

 

Such are the facts.

Posted: 25th, April 2017 | In: Celebrities, Reviews, Sports, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


UKIP’s sad plan to ban the burqa makes Muslim women society’s punks

UKIP wants to ban the burqa. When you ban things, you become a bansturbator. Paul Nuttall, who’d look good is a tweed burqa, tells the electorate via the Andrew Marr Show: “[Firstly] we have a heightened security risk at the moment and for CCTV to be effective you need to see people’s faces. Secondly, there’s the issue of integration. I don’t believe you can integrate fully and enjoy the fruits of British society if you can’t see people’s faces.”

The spread of CCTV is an affront to human dignity an privacy. The Labour Party’s architectural legacy is to have cameras on every street corner. Less of that, please. They talk of society and caring for one another and then pebbledash the streets with cameras to observe us all.

 

UKIP burqa ban

 

As for the British way. Well, wearing what you like is the British way. Telling someone what they cannot wear is not stretching their and our freedom. Making an outfit a criminal offence is the stuff of bigots, prudes and censors. Any punks out there looking to upset the olds and the stiffs with their clothing know what do: get a burqa and glam it up with a few studs, pins and outré symbols.

Ella Whelan notes:

In calling for a burqa ban, UKIP is actually disempowering the potential agents of change; namely, women. Banning women from making personal decisions about dress is never going to wash as a step towards gender equality because it assumes women are incapable of changing things for themselves.

UKIP’s idea is that woman ought to be saved even against their will. UKIP will decide what is acceptable attire. And this from Nuttall, a man who in his bid to look like a member of the Establishment dresses in itchy tweeds, as Hugo Rifkind quipps, like a “skinhead Rupert Bear”.

As for freedom, well, Christopher Hitchens likened the burqa to a KKK hood. Although I’ve not seen many burqa-clad women lynching people. He wrote:

Let me ask a simple question to the pseudoliberals who take a soft line on the veil and the burqa. What about the Ku Klux Klan? Notorious for its hooded style and its reactionary history, this gang is and always was dedicated to upholding Protestant and Anglo-Saxon purity. I do not deny the right of the KKK to take this faith-based view, which is protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. I might even go so far as to say that, at a rally protected by police, they could lawfully hide their nasty faces. But I am not going to have a hooded man or woman teach my children, or push their way into the bank ahead of me, or drive my taxi or bus, and there will never be a law that says I have to.

Shikha Dalmia responded:

Burqas are certainly a tool of female oppression in Islamic theocracies where sharia law sanctions violence against women who violate its strictures. But that is not true in liberal democracies where the reason government exists is to protect personal choices from physical violence. When women wear burqas despite such protection, it has to be assumed that they are doing so of their own free will. This doesn’t mean that all Muslim women affirmatively embrace burqas–although no doubt some do. But it does mean that their emotional ties with their communities and families are, on balance, stronger than their distaste for the burqa and hence they’d rather wear it than face rejection.

Despite years of sectarian bloodletting, if Indians still intuitively understand this and take a benign view of the burqa, it is hardly because they are inherently more rational. It is because their secularism has been shaped by India’s dominant religion–Hinduism–whose non-monotheistic ethos allows the space for multiple faiths. In this sense, Hinduism is perhaps more profoundly in sync with liberal tolerance than monotheistic faiths.

More crucially, however, there is nothing in Hinduism that makes an individual’s spiritual salvation anyone’s business except the individual herself. By contrast, Hitchens, et al, who have been raised in the cradle of a Christian civilization, have imbibed a certain comfort level with the crusading notion that people can–and ought to–be saved even against their will. Hence, it does not matter if Muslim women don’t regard the burqa as oppressive. They have to be given sartorial liberation in the same way that the heathens need to be given spiritual liberation.

It’s not them. It’s us. Confront your prejudices and carry on.

The last word is from Graeme Wood:

The students were fifteen females in full niqab. When I entered the classroom and saw fifteen students who looked identical in every way, I burst out laughing, and never totally regained composure. The utter neutrality of their aspect was disarming to say the least. After a few minutes, I started asking them questions in English about their lives and why they wanted to learn English. “I am a pharmacist!” chirped one of the bolder students, so I turned to look through her eyeslit and ask whether she thought Yemeni honey had medicinal properties. Instantly fourteen black-gloved hands shot out to point at one of the other women in the room: I was talking to the wrong student, six desks away. This drill happened about twenty more times in the next hour, and even though my sonar triangulation improved a little, even by the end I could narrow down blurted answers at best to a clump of five or so students. I ended up accidentally excusing women with no cars to check on their parking, and letting women with empty bladders go to the lavatory. In every case the errors lasted only seconds, but the experience was still totally bewildering.

So the garments did seem to have some serious pedagogical drawbacks. On the other hand, every wearer of burqa and niqab I have asked has viewed the garment as a blessing: a liberation not so much from the stares of men as from the stares of anyone at all. It freed them from caring about their appearance. They didn’t have to do their hair. (Of course, since fashion abhors a vacuum, and when women’s clothes are made forcibly subdued, they find ways to mark style by decorating the fringes of their abayas, say, or by paying heavy attention to eye make-up.) They could count money in public. They didn’t get covered with filth, as I did, standing around waiting for the bus, and they could check me out and stare at me without risking the awkwardness of my staring back. No doubt there are women whose burqas are compulsory, but I have not met them.

If UKIP has their way we won’t meet them at all.

Posted: 25th, April 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: blaming gypsies is the cheapest solution

Madeleine McCann: as we approach the tenth anniversary of her vanishing the news is coming thick and fast in the British Press.

The Mirror (front page): “MADDIE ‘WAS SNATCHED BY RICH FAMILY’.”

Maddie Mccann MI5

 

Not poor gypsies, then? Not a paedophile – well, not a poor one. And she didn’t wander off. Madeleine McCann was stolen. The Mirror has more:

Missing Madeleine McCann ‘was snatched AFTER leaving apartment to look for parents’

She walked out the door and someone passing buy stole her. Maybe. Because what looks like fact to the Google news bots and headline readers is one man’s opinion. This is the “shocking new abduction theory”.

The man with the theory is Danny Collins.

The three-year-old could not have been taken from the Portuguese flat as the window shutters could only be opened from the inside, journalist Danny Collins has claimed.

The writer, who covered the case at the time, is convinced she left apartment 5a in Praia da Luz looking for her parents before being kidnapped and possibly sold to gypsies.

The gypsies did it?! If you’re going to guess who stole a child walking about a busy holiday complex searching for their parents dining in the area it’s always easy to Press f9 and blame the gypsies. No-one has yet claimed the Jews took her and used her blood to make Matzos and a ritual drink, but give it time.

With no evidence linking gypsies to the child’s vanishing, the story seems happy to point the finger at a group with long history of persecution. That’s revolting.

Says Collins, who has written a book on the case:

 “I came across no clear indication that a planned abduction took place that night. Madeleine awoke and took the opportunity offered by the open patio doors to leave the apartment.”

He’s done lots of research and spoken with lots of people. He’s not found the child. But:

From his findings Collins believes “the most logical conclusion” was that she was snatched by a passing “itinerant” looking for some quick cash.

But Madeleine’s parents still insist the tot would not have wandered out, saying she would have had to open a patio door and two gates, one with a child safety lock, and close them afterwards.

The Mirror’s front-page screamer is sourced in the Sun. Over there we read:

But nearly ten years on, veteran investigative journalist Danny Collins believes he may have uncovered the truth behind the disappearance of little Madeleine McCann.

May. The Mirror’s front-page fact is looking sketchy. But gypsies continue to take a battering. Below a picture of the child in an Everton FC shirt, the Sun writers: “The shocking new theory claims Madeleine McCann could have been stolen by gypsies.”

Disgusting stuff.

Collins is quoted:

The McCanns overlooked the simplest of truths that would later be seized on by the Portuguese investigators and see them considered prime suspects.

“The metal shutters were impossible to lever upwards more than 1-2cm. Nor did the shutters or the sills on which they rested in the closed position show any marks of an attempt at forced entry.”

But what of the gypsies getting treated as suspects?

During his investigations, Collins was told by Iberian travellers that if Madeleine had been found on the street it was likely she would have been taken and a plan hatched to extract a ransom or reward.

But then, given the immediate high-profile nature of the case, they might have sold her to Romany gypsies.

Collins thinks this is the “most logical conclusion”.

As we grab the torches and mach on those Romany gypsies, other news sources have more on ‘Our Maddie’. What about the money?

The Independent: “Madeleine McCann may have been kidnapped by slave traders and sold, claims ex-Scotland Yard detective.”

May. There it is again, that word that can also mean ‘may not’. And who buys and sells children?

Gangs who operate in Mauritania, West Africa, reportedly sell children to rich Middle Eastern families

White slavers!

Leicester Mercury: “Madeleine McCann: New information in the hunt for missing Rothley youngster.”

Information or speculation?

An employee of the holiday resort where Madeleine McCann went missing 10 years ago could hold the key to solving the mystery of the missing toddler, it has been claimed.

Yep. It’s speculation.

In a ‘world exclusive’ Australian documentary aired today, former Scotland Yard police officer Colin Sutton told reporter Rahni Sadler: “There is an employee, somebody who worked within the Ocean Villa complex who has some information or some knowledge that may be of assistance.”

One man’s opinion is a world exclusive. So is this. So is that last breath you took, and the next one. It’s all unique and exclusive. And it’s all utterly useless in finding out what happened to Madeleine McCann.

Meanwhile, Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry, told the makers of the programme, called Sunday Night, that they would not rest until they had found their daughter.

Kate said: “It’s every parent’s worst nightmare, and it’s touched everybody, I think.”

She added: “I don’t believe we would ever reach a point where we think, ‘Oh, we’ve done everything now’. Whilst the situation remains as it is, Madeleine is out there and she needs us to find her.”

Stay tuned:

While there is no evidence that Madeleine is not alive, the programme looked at theories about why, if she had been killed, her body had not been found.

Is there evidence of gypsies? Can an entire race sue?

Mr Sutton told Sunday Night that despite Portuguese authorities conducting their largest ever police search, it was possible Madeleine’s remains could still be hidden in the Praia da Luz area.

He said it was “just large enough and difficult enough terrain to search” that police officers could “search for years and still not be satisfied you’d actually done it properly”.

Thanks. Very helpful.

Publisher of The Portugal News Paul Luckman said he believed there are up to 600 wells scattered throughout Praia da Luz, and that Madeleine’s remains could be in one of them.

He believes there are 600 wells that could contain a body of a child who could be alive. Got it?

He said: “[In] five, 10 years time, somebody suddenly decides to clear the well and they will bring it back into operation… they would clean it out and bones would be found.”

And on and on and on it goes.

Maddie Mccann MI5

 

Daily Star (front page): “MADDIE: MI5 HID HER BODY.”

In a bombshell documentary aired today on Australian TV, Goncalo Amaral suggested MI5 helped to hide Maddie’s body.

It’s duelling ex-cops on the telly.

The detective made the shocking claims on Aussie show Sunday Night which had said it would be revealing a major new lead in the disappearance case.

Amaral said MI5 “for sure had an involvement” in what happened to Maddie.

Proof? Evidence?

“I’m saying for sure [MI5] have an involvement in the situation”

Proof? Evidence?

On the same TV show, in response dad Gerry McCann said: “The less said about Goncalo Amaral the better.”

This might be the least edifying episode yet.

SMG: “Madeleine McCann’s parents deny killing or being negligent of their daughter on Sunday Night.”

Gerry McCann spoke to the show. He is quoted:

“The ludicrous thing is that Madeleine died in the apartment by an accident and we hid her body,” Mr McCann told Sunday Night. “Well, when did she have the accident and die? ‘Cause the only time she was left unattended was when we were at dinner, so if she died then, how could we have disposed of or hidden her body? You know, when there was an immediate search?

“It’s just nonsense! And if she died when we were in the apartment, or fell, why would we cover that up?”

Do not try to answer those questions. Libel is pricey.

When asked by Sunday Night reporter Rahni Sadler “Did you kill your daughter?”, Mr McCann replied: “No. No. Never.

“And you know, there’s nothing with any logic that could, you know… You would have to start with why? How? When? Who? And there’s just simply, you know, no answer to any of these things – there’s nothing to suggest anything. So no – that’s an emphatic ‘no’.”

He asks the questions. But, again, do not try to answer them here. It’d be speculation. Stick to blaming gypsies, who haven’t sued anyone for defamation (yet).

The Sun: “‘THEY ANNIHILATED ME’ Madeleine McCann crime expert who told doc her parents Gerry and Kate may have hidden body plans to sue show for twisting her comments.”

You see.

A CRIME expert who told an explosive Madeline McCann documentary her parents could have hidden their daughter’s body plans to SUE the Aussie TV channel which ran the show.

US criminal profiler Pat Brown featured on Channel 7’s Sunday Night show claiming Gerry and Kate McCann could have put Maddie’s body in a bag, hid at the beach and moved it weeks later.

But the expert – who told the show there was a possibility Madeleine had been killed as the result of an accident, neglect or abuse – now plans to sue the network for defamation.

Pat claims in her original hour-long Skype interview with journalist Rahni Sadler that she made it clear this was only a theory based on her view of the evidence available.

Some theories are cheap. Other theories can be expensive. Says Pat:

“I never stated the McCanns were guilty of anything other than neglecting their children, and I will stand by that. I never said the McCanns are guilty of covering up the death of their child or moving their child’s body. The show purposefully set out to destroy my reputation. The only reason I was featured was to annihilate me by making me look foolish.”

To recap: aliens took her. Probably. But not the ones with expensive lawyers. The other ones.

Such are the facts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted: 24th, April 2017 | In: Key Posts, Madeleine McCann, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The French Election is a huge waste of paper

The French election are riding high on the news cycle. The field has narrowed into a straight fight between Front National’s Marine Le Pen and independent Emmanuel Macron. Round 2 will be defined not what the French are for but what they are against. Do you want a samey rosy-fingered dawn (Marcon) or a honey-soaked past dipped in aspic (Le Pen)?

But this post is about the system. In Round 1, French voters were given 11 pieces of paper – 1 for each candidate. In the booth they choose 1 and put it in envelope. The rest are, presumably, thrown away.  More paper is printed than used. There is no electronic voting and very few voting machines.

 

 

Michæl Saunby tweets: “Avoids the need for pencils, which some (kippers) have a phobia of.”

Indeed, at the EU referendum some voters smelled a rat:

@Rox_Tans tweeted: “When you vote take a pen with you! They just tried making me do mine in pencil yeah ok so you can rub it out? Don’t think so bruv.”

Echoing this sentiment, @Kez_777 wrote: “Please make sure you take a BLACK PEN with you to vote as pencil votes can be tampered with (I wouldnt put anything past Cameron) #VoteLeave”

So is the French system better?

 

Posted: 24th, April 2017 | In: Politicians, Reviews, Technology | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Dad dragged off plane for ‘sex trafficking’ his 3-year-old daughter

A man and his 3-year-old daughter on a United Airlines flight to the US from Mexico were taken from the plane. A passenger saw the pair and wrongly assumed the man was sex trafficking the child. The man was carrying his and her passports and a legal letter from the child’s mother giving her approval for the trip. But one passenger thought they looked iffy.

The child’s mother, high school teacher Maura Furfey, tells The Huffington Post:

After our 3-year-old snoozed on her father’s lap for most of the flight, the plane landed. He texted me to tell me they had arrived. When the plane taxied to the gate, however, a number of officers from the Port Authority and Customs and Border Patrol boarded the plane, approached my husband and instructed him to grab his carry-ons and follow them. He and our daughter were escorted out of the plane before anyone else could get off.

Once out of the plane, four officers from Port Authority and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) surrounded them. They fired so many questions at him that he didn’t know who was asking what. He had no idea what was going on. Our daughter started to cry in all of the commotion.

After asking about where our daughter was born, who was there, and where her birth certificate had been issued, they asked for my phone number; that was when they called me, asking me the same questions in order to verify the story. At that point they seemed satisfied that my husband was not, in fact, trafficking our daughter. They then told me that this accusation was not coming from the CBP, who were trained to identify these kind of situations, but from a passenger on the plane. They were following protocol to act on reported suspicions such as this.

In 2003, UNICEF produced Stop the Traffic!. The report told usthat hundreds of known cases of trafficked children are just the tip of the iceberg. Thousands may be trafficked to the UK every year, mainly from West Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia, but the scale of the problem is hidden by the nature of the crime and by a lack of police statistics. Police have been unable to monitor the situation because trafficking has not been a criminal offence.”
So how do we know how prevalent it is, then? What “may” be happening is not a fact. As well as sexual abuse, children are…:

…also forced to work as domestic servants, drug mules, in sweatshops and restaurants, or as beggars or pickpockets. The case of ‘Adam’, the Nigerian boy’s torso found in the River Thames, raised concerns that trafficked children are being used for ritual killing.

And very soon murder is linked to fostering and families seeking better lives for their children:

Between 8,000 and 10,000 children, many from West Africa, are being privately fostered in the UK. Many could be being abused or exploited, without anyone even knowing that they are in the country.

It all sounds horrific. But the facts are unclear. Nonetheless UNICEF still manages to come up with a number:

Worldwide, over a million children are trafficked each year.

But that’s not a fact. It’s a guess.

UNICEF is working internationally to prevent child exploitation from happening in the first place, but legislation is needed to deal with the crime once committed and to act as a deterrent.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 24th, April 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Canary Islands ferry tests out sea defences by ramming sea wall

How do you test sea defences? In Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in the Canary Islands, you set the ferry to ramming speed and go for it:

Videos and photos of the accident appeared quite serious, although no injuries have been reported.

The ship involved was the Volcan de Tamasite and, according to information received by The Canary, 140 passengers were on board at the time, though nobody seems to have been seriously hurt, some reports have mentioned up to four people with minor injuries.

Looking at the state of the wall inspires little confidence.

Posted: 23rd, April 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: seeking the man by The Dolphin

Madeleine McCann appears on two national newspapers front pages today. You can read more about the Mirror’s news on a top cop’s theories here.

 

madeleine mccann daily mirror

 

So much for the opinion. What we who have followed this story from the outset crave are facts.

The Express has actual news on the actual investigation into what happened to the missing child.  The paper leads with the “phone box clue” to “Missing Maddie”.

 

daily express maddy mccann

 

James Murray says:

DETECTIVES are investigating phone calls made from a telephone box in Praia da Luz in a bid to trace a man acting suspiciously shortly before Madeleine McCann disappeared.

Indeed. It is odd. Who uses a phone box these days?

The story goes that Adrian and Lizelle Marais, a married couple working at an eatery called The Dolphin close to the phone box, spotted a “strange” man who “looked similar to a photofit of a suspect”. Their restaurant is around 700 metres from the Ocean Club, where Madeleine McCann was staying.

So which suspect are we looking at? We’ve seen a few in the media. The paper notes:

That led Portugal’s public prosecutor to order all phone records for the call box to be checked in an effort to find the man, who has never been traced.

Adding:

The prosecutor made the order on the grounds that the man may have abducted or murdered the lost three-year-old.

And so the jump is made. From being man at phone box at a busy summer holiday report, he is now someone who “may” have murdered a child.

We then get to which “suspect” the story relates to.

The call box is 50 yards from the spot where a man carrying a child similar to Madeleine was seen by Irishman Martin Smith and his family, who had been dining at the Dolphin at around 9pm on the night she disappeared.

Mr Smith’s account formed part of a Crimewatch reenactment.

Policia Judiciaria files on the case outline what Lizelle told officers the day after Madeleine vanished. The report states: “The person used the public telephone for long periods of time, always more than 10 minutes. To her, the person did not appear to be either a tourist or a resident. One time she had passed close to him and had felt ‘strange’ but did not know why.”

Mysterious stuff. But not new. Just old and in light of no developments in the case over ten years, still worthy of a look. And, as the Star proves with its interpretation of the Express‘ story, anything can be vital in the mystery of ‘Our Maddie’. Says the Star: “Madeleine McCann: Phone box may be key to finding Maddie.” Or not.

 

Posted: 23rd, April 2017 | In: Madeleine McCann, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: five theories, three ex-coppers and 10 years of nothing

Madeleine McCann: A look at reporting on the missing child. It remains frenzied, speculative, lurid and light on news.

Daily Mail: “Did Madeleine McCann wander off and have an accident? Was she stolen to order? Or was it a burglary gone wrong? Detective lays out theories about her disappearance.”

In short: did any crime befall Madeleine McCann? The detective isn’t sure if one did. But, then, he’s isn’t a professional detective. He’s a “former Scotland Yard detective” who “believes he has come up with the five most plausible theories to explain the disappearance of Madeleine McCann”.

Only five. This is progress. On May 10 2007, the Daily Mirror produced SIX theories. They were: the “PAEDOPHILE GANG”, the “LONE PAEDOPHILE”, the “JEALOUS MOTHER”, Madeleine wandering off and “DROWNED”, the “OPPORTUNIST PAEDOPHILE”, the “CHILDLESS COUPLE”.

Colin Sutton is the “detective” with the five-fingered theory. He first told it to the Mirror, which is the source for the Mail’s story.

 

madeleine mccann daily mirror

 

Daily Mirror: “Was Madeleine McCann stolen to order, taken by lone paedo or did she just wander off? The scenarios that could explain her disappearance.”

Sutton’s Five Theories that could be useful are:

1 The McCanns or the Tapas Seven

The McCanns have been libelled. Take care. Speculation hurst lives. Says Sutton:

I can understand why the Portuguese police asked questions about the McCanns and the Tapas Seven. As uncomfortable as it is, the first place I would have started looking is their group. Without any other information to go on, the most likely scenario when a three-year-old girl disappears into thin air is that someone close to her knows what happened.

However, the police do appear to have decided quite quickly that was the only line of investigation they were going to take.

By concentrating just on that scenario they may have missed tips or other lines that meant going down a completely different investigation route.

After that he adds a further four theories:

2 Targeted kidnap by a trafficking gang

This is the most likely scenario once those closely linked to Madeleine have been ruled out.

Concluding;

Given all the facts we know, it’s the most likely and credible scenario.

But why did they take her?

A trafficking ring is more likely than a lone paedophile or paedophile ring. Yes there are paedophiles, yes she is a little blonde girl. But I think six and seven-year-old girls are much more at risk from paedophiles or child abuse rings.

Paedophiles target blonde girls more than, says, brunette or black girls? We know that the media prefers blonde victims.

Looking at the trafficking angle, unless the order was specifically for a young blonde girl, why her and not one of the twins?

Dunno. Got a theory?

Babies have less memories than a three-year-old. If Madeleine is alive she will probably remember she had another mother and father and used to live in another house.

Probably. Or not. The theories contain more theories.

If you were stealing on spec you would have taken one of the twins. Not both, just one. So it goes back to a specific order for a young blonde girl.

Has a young blonde girl died and their parents want to replace her? Or is there another reason for stealing to order? When you pick it all apart it’s the most likely scenario.

He picks, but he comes up with no answers, just more questions. The scab grows back over the wound:

3 She wandered off and had a fatal accident

He says Madeleine McCann left Cuddle Cat, her toy, behind. He says the fact of the toy remaining in the holiday flat makes this theory unlikely.

4 Opportunist abducted her

This is less likely than other scenarios. The chances of a predatory paedophile just happening across Madeleine and being able to abduct her without being detected are just so remote.

Sarah Payne, right, who was eight (when she was killed by Roy Whiting in 2000), and five-year-old April Jones (who was killed by Mark Bridger in Wales in 2012) are probably the only cases that match something like that.

Yeah, Probably.

5 Killed as part of a burglary gone wrong

This is extremely unlikely. If you have got a burglar who has gone into the apartment for material theft, the chances are once they find there are kids in there they will run a mile.

The Mirror concludes this flight of fancy by telling readers: “Anyone with information about Madeleine McCann’s disappearance should call the Find Madeleine investigation line on: 0845 8384699 or email: investigation@findmadeleine.com.”

Exactly. If you know anything, tell the police. If you know nothing, tell the readers.

The Sun: “MADDIE SUSPECTS – Convicted British paedo, heroin-addicted burglar and bogus charity collectors among main suspects in Madeleine McCann disappearance, says top cop.”

The top cop is Sutton As as for the smack head being a child snatcher, well, he told the Mirror: “Junkies don’t take three-year-old girls.” The convicted British paedo is Raymond Hewlett. He’s dead.

Having conjured suspects from the ether, the Sun adds in a second story: “WAS MADDIE KIDNAPPED TO ORDER? Top Brit ex-cop says Madeleine McCann could have been snatched by traffickers to replace grieving parents’ own dead child.”

As Sutton of the newsroom guesses – is that big reward still on offer? – and the newspaper lap up his thoughts, the Mirror turns to another ex-cop for more theories.

Sunday Mirror: “Ex-top cop breaks Madeleine McCann silence to say where he thinks she was taken.”

Madeleine McCann was snatched and taken to a warren of caves nearby that have never been searched, a Portuguese investigator has suggested.

The theory comes from ex cop Paulo Pereira Cristovao – who became the boss of Portugal’s missing children agency in the same year the three-year-old disappeared.

He says: “I think this case has lots of mistakes – from many persons, from many situations, from the police and maybe from the government. At the end of the day we all forgot one person: Madeleine McCann.”

No. We don’t. There has been ten years of reporting on the case. The innocent child has not been forgotten – she has, though, be turned into the benchmark for all missing children and used to sell papers. And, like all ex-ops with opinions, Cristovao didn’t take long to add a “maybe” to what he thinks.

We’re not told why Cristovao is talking now, only that he has imagined what he’d have done if he had kidnapped a child in Praia da Luz. He thinks Madeleine McCann is dead:

“I put myself in the role of someone who knew nothing about the streets or the region. Where would I put the body of a girl? I stood at the apartment door – to the right is the town of Portimao. There are lots of people there, lots of buildings. If I had kidnapped her that’s not the way I’d want to go. I would want to go left, and find the first side road. I put my car on that road, and I went straight to Burgau. It’s a nearby beach, with a lot of rocks with caves.

“It’s a good place to put somebody. As far as I know the police never went there, because you would need divers.”

As far as he knows. Good idea to check, no? Aren’t facts useful when you’re investigating and theorising?

“In a case where you hear theories like aliens and gypsies kidnapping Madeleine, I think this is as good as all the others.”

Alien abduction is notoriously hard to verify. Police divers looking in a lake less so.

“We’ve heard theories so stupid over these 10 years,” he adds without irony.” When we don’t understand something, we complicate it. I think sometimes – always – the best solution is the simple solution.”

Clydebank Post: “Madeleine McCann breakthrough: Aussie TV show claims to have solved mystery of tot’s disappearance.”

Pull up an armchair. You too, detectives.

Channel 7’s Sunday Night show has released a teaser clip of this weekend’s programme in which it promises to be a “landmark television event”.

The video claims the show has a new line of inquiry which could bring investigators closer to solving the mystery of the youngster’s disappearance.

Trailing a theory about what happened to Madeleine McCann is grim. A post on the channel’s Facebook says:

“The disappearance of Madeleine McCann has continued to captivate the world for nearly ten years. Maddie was only three years old when she vanished from her family’s holiday apartment in Portugal. The police search that followed became the largest in Portugal’s history – but no trace of the missing toddler was ever found. Now, new developments in the case could finally reveal the truth about what happened to little Maddie.”

Could. Or could not. Stay tuned. We’re right back after these ads.

Daily Star: “Madeleine McCann: Missing Maddie now 13 and looks like THIS.”

She’s alive! The Star knows it. In the paper’s rush to dash out an “exclusive” artist’s rendering of what the child might look like, it produces this (below). The person on the left looks a lot like Kate McCann.

madeleine mccann daily star

Daily Record: “Cop in Madeleine McCann case remains utterly unrepentant after damning book blaming Kate and Gerry.”

The hatchet job on Goncalo Amaral begins:

Despite becoming a shadow of his former self, Goncalo Amaral still has no sympathy for the parents of the missing youngster.

F*** the policeman:

On the side of the run-down apartment building, the grafitti reads “Foda a policia”. You don’t need to be fluent in Portuguese to figure out the expletive-laden translation.

This crime-ridden Lisbon estate is home to the ex-detective once tasked with solving Madeleine McCann ‘s disappearance.

So crap at police work is Amaral that even his own home if plagued by crime. We then get a potted history of his life, which is portrayed as unrelentingly sad and failed. We learn that he was “sacked from the Maddie probe after criticising British police and making mistakes”. He “then penned a damning book pointing the finger of blame at her parents, Kate and Gerry . He accused them of covering up her death and faking her abduction. The couple sued, sparking an eight-year libel battle that the ex-cop has now won.”
It was always risky to sue in a country where free speech has been so hard won.
The Mirror then get personal:

In the early days, he was alleged to work just four-and-a-half-hours a day. Sporting a large beer belly, he regularly enjoyed three-hour lunches.

Amaral, 57, split from second wife Sofia in 2012, blaming the pressures of the case. He moved back to the tough Lisbon suburb of Olivais, where he grew up. His expensive suits and fedora are gone.

So too has the beer belly and chauffeur-driven Mercedes, replaced by a battered Citroen Picasso.

His slimming is a negative?

But the arrogance remains – as the Mirror discovered when we confronted Amaral last week. Amaral also refused to apologise for the mistakes that hampered the early days of the probe. Instead, he threatened to have our reporter and photographer arrested.

But it was his cruel refusal to offer any sympathy to Kate and Gerry that was the most damning.

Is the purpose of the Mirror’s barrage of ‘Our Maddie’ articles aimed at securing an exclusive with the McCanns?

Daily Mirror: “Madeleine McCann’s parents Kate and Gerry met as junior doctors and had perfect life until their daughter vanished.”

That’s pretty much the entire story, which shows no sign of reaching an end.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 23rd, April 2017 | In: Madeleine McCann, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0