Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Ms Mills says…

“There was absolutely no honest way that Piers Morgan could have obtained that tape that he has so proudly bragged about unless they had gone into my voice messages.”

+++ Heather Tells BBC Piers Lying About Hacking +++

The BBC’s Newsnight current affairs flagship show will tonight broadcast confirmation from Heather Mills of Guido’s story from July 27 re-posted below:

Yet another Piers Morgan phone-hacking implication has surfaced from his own misguided boasts. Writing in the Daily Mail in 2006 when Sir Paul McCartney split from Heather Mills, Morgan went into some extremely voyeuristic detail about their relationship:

“Stories soon emerged that the marriage was in trouble – at one stage I was played a tape of a message Paul had left for Heather on her mobile phone. It was heartbreaking. The couple had clearly had a tiff, Heather had fled to India, and Paul was pleading with her to come back. He sounded lonely, miserable and desperate, and even sang ‘We Can Work It Out’…”

Who played it to Piers? How did they get it? Did he procure the illegal interception of an electronic communication – an imprisonable offence - with a maximum two-year stretch on conviction?  Looks like it to Guido.

How can Piers say he never authorised phone-hacking when he admits to listening to recordings of the voicemail of a distressed old man and his soon to be ex-wife? How can Piers say he never published anything on the back of phone hacking when he regaled this very story to the world in print under his own byline? Where was the public interest here?

It gets worse, Guido has been told Morgan played the recording out loud to the newsroom for fun. Laughing and mocking Macca’s misery.

In fact this is prima facie evidence of criminality on the part of Piers Morgan. We’re taking our dossier to the Metropolitan Police. Time for Piers Morgan to get a lawyer…

+++ Heather Mills: Mirror Exec Admitted Hacking of Voicemail +++

Apparently They’re All Sexy MPs

Belligerent old socialist Paul Flynn has come out with a corker with his updated Westminster survival guide:

“For reasons that are inexplicable, MPs – even the most superficial, unattractive, mis-shapen ones – are attractive to the other sex. It does present serious problems of going astray. There is a magnetism to this.”

The 76 year old advice for avoiding unwanted chemical attractions ranges from taking regular cold baths, thinking about death and “recognising the transitory nature of sexual relations”. Guido would have thought a big grey beard would be enough to solve any problems, but then that never stopped old Mike Hancock…

Vince at a Loss

Panic stations over at the British Library this morning after a doddery old man caused a security scare by losing his rucksack. A mundane every day occurrence was made somewhat more embarrassing by the fact the culprit was Vince Cable. Witnesses couldn’t help but point out the irony that at a press conference about protecting other peoples’ property, all be it intellectual, the Secretary of State was unable to look after his own.

Guido is waiting to hear back on whether it ever turned up…

Gnome v Moron – Private Eye Twists the Morgan Knife

The blood is splattered across the pages of this week’s Private Eye. With an old grudge to settle, it’s no surprise to see Ian Hislop go out of his way to help out an old friend in his hour of need. The whole of the front page, the cartoons and a very special phone-hacking expose are all devoted to Morgan’s plight. Along with a round up of the story so far, and new details unearthed by mystical uncredited “bloggers”, yet another indiscreet discussion Piers Morgan had about his old paper’s dirty tricks surfaces:

(Click to enlarge)

So after a long lunch in September 2002, not only did Morgan regurgitate hacked phone messages to one of the victims, but he went on to lambast the Chief Exec of BT for not “providing better security pin numbers for mobile phones”. But of course Mr Morgan has never knowingly published any story from these means, he just uses his ill-gotten insider-knowledge for party pieces rather than selling papers…

Data Journalism Guardian Style

A decade or so ago Guido spent years reading company annual reports. They are an art form nowadays, beautifully presented multimedia spectaculars. Like much great art they take reality and twist it. Guido likes to read the Guardian Media Group’s annual report to see how their hedge fund investments are doing, how many hundreds of millions of pounds they are hiding from the taxman in the Caymans and how much the editor of the people’s broadsheet, Alan Rusbridger, is getting paid. Since you ask, £605,000 all in with benefits, up 7% from last year, though if you read the Guardian’s own report you might not understand that because apparently “in nominal terms his salary in 2010/11 was unchanged” despite somehow managing to take home £44,000 more in salary this year than last year. Tough gig being the Guardian journalist who writes up the boss’s pay.

Take a look at this chart of GMG plc’s revenues as depicted in the annual report. At first glance they look solid, with a good base. As your eyes move naturally from left to right things look like they are getting bigger and better. Look again and you see that actually revenue has fallen in five years from £593 million to £255 million. Some of that narrowing of the revenue base is due to selling off a large part of the family silver, Auto Trader, in 2008. An accidental visual deception?

Guido has re-jigged the chart to make things clearer, the traditional bar-chart shows revenue has dropped by a further third since 2008. Anyone might think that the annual report was trying to obscure the obvious, that The Guardian is a loss making vanity publishing concern run by people who abhor capitalism and profit-making. Presumably those that will keep their jobs are happy about not making profits…

Solidarity

Hansard from the 12th October 2009 made Guido chuckle:

Mr. Jim Devine (Livingston) (Lab): Unlike my hon. Friend the Member for Midlothian (Mr. Hamilton), I fully support the Scottish Justice Secretary’s decision to send al-Megrahi home. 

This crook didn’t even need a dodgy medical to get him out after four months…

Via @paulhutcheon

Quote of the Day

Vince Cable states the obvious to Sky News:

“I’m still in the analogue era…”

Milly Murderer’s Cruel Compensation Call

There is justifiable outrage at the fact that Milly Dowler’s killer Levi Bellfield is in line for £30,000 compensation deal after a minor assault by another prisoner. The Mirror have gone big on the story, reporting that the 6ft, 18 stone former bouncer got nothing more than a slap. If only there was something we could Restore that would put an end to absurdities like this. As the Dowler family requested on the day Bellfield went down…


Seen Elsewhere

Don’t Underestimate Philip Hammond | Nick Wood
Labour Council Collaborates With Pro-Hamas Group | Breitbart
Qatar Sugar-Daddies of Islamist Financing | Left Foot Forward
Guido’s Column | Sun
Miliband Drawing Attention to His Mistakes is Madness | Lord Bell
Another Renewable Myth Goes Up in Smoke | Matt Ridley
Ed’s Problem is His Policies | Trevor Kavanagh
Ed’s Image is All He Has Going For Him | Boris
Labour a Risk to the Economy and Jobs Growth | Leo McKinstry
UKIP Will Make Miliband PM | Tele
Tories: Ruffley Critics are ‘Minority Feminist Groups’ | Buzzfeed


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New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:

“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”



Christie Malry @fcablog

Ed Miliband does photo oops, not photo ops


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