Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Gérard Depardieu Flees French Tax Tyranny

gerarThis one slipped under Guido’s radar earlier. Following thieving François Hollande’s 75% tax rate for those earning over a million euros, French film legend Gérard Depardieu has upped sticks and left the country. Depardieu has moved literally yards across the border to Belgium, earning himself a 25% tax break in the process.

The taxodus continues…

Best of Times, Worst of Times

As the tributes flood from Times staff to James Harding here is how he stood with the other editors:

Word is that him and Rupert were barely on speaking terms. 

Times Up: Harding Out at Thunderer

TIMES-UP

Apparently Harding went at the request of News Corp and will stay at News International in a different role. Peston says John Witherow is coming over from the Sunday Times – no news yet on his replacement if so, but the Guardian say otherwise:

Developing…

UPDATE: Harding’s statement:

Craig Oliver Also Threatened Telegraph Over Miller

The second government aide who threatened the Telegraph over the Maria Miller expenses story has been named as No10 director of communications Craig Oliver:

“In a phone call to the editor of this newspaper, Craig Oliver indicated that the article may be poorly timed as “she [Maria Miller] is looking at Leveson at the moment”…It can now be disclosed that after the contacts between Mrs Miller’s adviser and the newspaper, Mr Oliver phoned Tony Gallagher, the editor of the Daily Telegraph, last Friday morning. He said that Mrs Miller was “very distressed” about her family being questioned over her expense claims. The Downing Street communications director said that the Cabinet Minister, who is currently overseeing negotiations over a new system of press regulation, was considering making a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission. He then raised the fact that Mrs Miller was leading the Government’s response to the Leveson report which recommended statutory press regulation.”

It’s not the first time that Craig’s cack-handed media manipulation has emerged. See below for a classic example of a Craig Oliver bollocking:

Divide and Snooze

Labour Taxed Poor More and Rich Less Than Coalition

With the dividing lines for the next election seemingly drawn at PMQs, one of Ed’s main attack lines is the claim that the Tories are hurting the poor and helping the rich. But do the stats back him up? According to HMRC these are the average income tax rates across the pay scale comparing Labour between 2009-10 and the Coalition for 2012-13:

income-tax

It is clear that lower earners paid more income tax under Labour than they do under the Coalition, while high earners are paying more now than they did back in 2009-10. This graph shows the relative percentage change in average income tax rates between Labour and the Coalition:

income-tax-2

Guido isn’t too happy about the higher-earners end of things, believing that the rich have suffered enough already and we are beyond Laffer optimal tax rates, though you can bet the Conservatives are rather pleased they listened to the LibDems and raised the lower threshold. This should be hammered home by the Tories every single day until the election…

WATCH: “Do You Know Your Horse is Gay?”

Fresh from the success of getting Kier Starmer of the CPS on board, the Reform Section 5 campaign to remove “insulting words or behaviour” from the Public Order Act made today’s Daily Politics, as policeman-impersonator Peter Tatchell pounded the streets with a gay pantomime horse. Quite a meeting of minds…

Quote of the Day

Full Text of Brian Leveson’s Australia Speech

Leveson All in a Muddle Down Under

Leveson has been speaking in Oz this morning. The man who only realised half way through his own inquiry that most journalists did not write their own headlines, has been dispensing some more pearls of wisdom about newspapers. Apparently bloggers are to blame for the drop in media standards and ethics, as it is making  hacks have to work harder and “undermine media standards through encouraging them to adopt a casual approach to the law”. Yes, it’s all those pesky bloggers fault that the News of the World hacked phones…

Most print hacks, especially in Westminster, are already are bloggers and tweeters. Leveson should have looked at the level of content produced on websites and on Twitter compared to what actually makes it into to print. The ‘can’t beat, so join them’ horse has already bolted.

Leveson’s attempts to shut the stable door through statutory regulation is looking increasingly absurd.


Seen Elsewhere

Who Is Steering Labour’s Strategy? | Ballot Box
Greens are UKIP for Young People | Telegraph
Short-Termism of CCHQ | ConHome
May Aide: CCHQ Are Being Misleading | Telegraph
Tories Planning For Second Election | Guardian
We Are Losing Cyber War | Fraser Nelson
Osborne Aide Lands Pay Rise | Mirror
The Sick Of It | Sun
UKIP MEP’s Welfare Hypocrisy | Channel 4
Rise of Angela Merkel | New Yorker
May SpAd Removed From Candidates List | ConHome


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The Economist asks Tony Blair about Wendi Deng:

“Mr Blair roundly denies any impropriety. Asked whether he was (at least) careless about his reputation, he says calmly that it is “not something I will ever talk about—I haven’t and I won’t”, and then bangs his coffee cup so loudly into its saucer that it spills and everyone in the room jumps. But did he find himself in a tangle over his friendship with Ms Deng? A large, dark pool of sweat has suddenly appeared under his armpit, spreading across an expensive blue shirt. Even Mr Blair’s close friends acknowledge that the saga damaged him—not least financially, since Mr Murdoch stopped contributing to Mr Blair’s faith foundation and cut him off from other friendly donors in America.”


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