Friday, November 8, 2013

Rusbridger’s Spooky Non-Denial Denial

Wednesday’s letter from 28 MPs to Alan Rusbridger specifically asked him to come clean about any identifying details of any member of the British intelligence services that have been distributed abroad. Something the Guardian has denied doing previously, but is now being oddly vague about. Guido has seen Rusbridger’s response, it is worth taking a look at the very careful language he uses:

“On the issue of staff names, you will be aware that over 850,000 people worldwide have access to not only the Snowden documents but to a whole range of information on GCHQ. Neither we nor any of our journalistic partners have published the identities of any personnel from the intelligence community, a point accepted and welcomed by the relevant agencies.”

All but confirming that names were sent abroad. Interesting how he denies ever having published the names. That wasn’t quite what they were asking, was it?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

What is Going On at the Guardian?

Last month the Guardian flatly denied spreading the names of GCHQ intelligence agents abroad, now they are refusing to do so. The paper admits sending some of its leaked documents abroad, though now for some reason today won’t make the same denial that spies’ identities were not amongst them. Have they only just checked? Did they even know at the time?

Guido is not sure how shipping names across borders is necessary when exposing the over-reach of the NSA. It is worth noting that two of the journalists most intimately involved the original NSA coverage have now either left the Guardian or moved on to different things, in different countries…

Monday, November 4, 2013

Guardian Jobs Carries Advert Banning Female Applicants

Many of the thousands of jobs advertised on the Guardian website are in recruitment. They are currently carrying an advert for a position down in Bristol as an account director at Pure Recruitment. So far, all pretty standard. Just the one thing: due to the successful candidate having to deal with businessmen from the Middle East, women are banned from applying.

“To include clients in the Middle East. Please note; Due to the travel and work restrictions for women in this area, we need to limit our candidate selection to males only.”

The Guardian turning a blind eye to workplace discrimination against women at home and abroad. Everyday sexism…

H/T @LAMillinery.

UPDATE: Victory!

Psycho Huhne Versus “Fictional Stories”

Is there a better argument against state regulation of the press than the last politician to be jailed after newspapers exposed his criminality coming out and backing it? Huhne’s latest rehab rambling in the Guardian reads like a spoof:

“What’s all the fuss about the royal charter meaning the end of press freedom? The royal charter doesn’t establish any regulation of the press – but the fourth estate still needs urgently to re-establish credibility…  If the Sun could not make up fictional stories when accuracy is too boring, time-consuming or costly, how would it make money?”

Huhne moralising about people “making up fictional stories”. Another reason to bring up those famous words again:

“What I want to say is these allegations are simply incorrect, they’ve been made before and they’ve been shown to be untrue, and I very much welcome the referral to the police as it will draw a line under the matter.”

Credibility has never really been Huhne’s strong point.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Ed Balls’ £5 Million State Subsidy For The Guardian

Guido isn’t sure who this one is more embarrassing for. While in office, Ed Balls used taxpayers’ money to subsidise the Guardian to the tune of 1% of its turnover. As Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, Balls bunged Kings Place £4,899,688 between 2007 and 2010. The money went on services ranging from advertising to training courses. Guardian News & Media had a turnover of £261.9 million in 2007/2008, that year they were the lucky recipients of £2,445,787 from Balls’ department or 1% of their annual turnover. Someone had to help keep them afloat, turns out it was the taxpayer…

Knowing Me Steve Coogan, Knowing You Alan Rusbridger

A very special guest at the Guardian’s morning conference today: Hacked Off’s very own Steve Coogan. Must have been some smiles around Kings Place when a gushing memo telling hacks how coke and hookers fan Coogan is an “ethical standard bearer” was delivered this morning. Of course he’s got a film out, so now the press are his best friends. The Royal Charter was only signed on Wednesday and already Hacked Off are running their own paper…

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

You’re Either In Front of Guido…

The Telegraph, Mirror, Indy, et all finally played catch up this morning. So what did the fearless seekers of truth over at the Guardian make of yesterday’s latest nudge down the global rankings for press freedom? Poor Rusbridger pet James Ball, who is off to the States to be their new investigations editor after colleagues claim he was approached by another organisation then used that as promotion leverage, did not have a good day. Is this is the level of investigative journalism we can expect from the Guardian in the future?

He went on to claim it was a diary story at best. Perhaps he should be taking over from Hugh Muir instead.

Indeed it was snarky slow claps all round at Kings Place:

But then again if the story’s not handed to you on a plate by Edward Snowden or Julian Assange, why bother leaving the office? Come back Glenn Greenwald, all is forgiven.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Where do the BBC Go to Find the New Peston?

The Guardian, of course. The Beeb are advertising Pesto’s old job in the paper’s job section. You don’t have to read the Guardian to work at the BBC, but it helps…

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Julian Smith’s Spooky Flip Flop

Tory MP Julian Smith has been busy doing the rounds in the TV studios today, sticking the boot in to the Guardian for publishing the Snowden files. This afternoon he has a debate in Westminster Hall debate on “The Guardian newspaper and its impact on national security”. Julian clearly takes the concerns of spooks very seriously.

Apart from the time he chose to ignore parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee report on how Chinese firm Huawei – banned by the US and Australia on security grounds – was able to gain a foothold within Britain’s internet infrastructure. When BT, heavily invested in Huawei kit, was awarded the taxpayer-subsidised contract to install broadband in Smith’s constituency, he dismissed any security concerns:

“This announcement is the modern day equivalent of the coming of the railways or the introduction of canals.”

If only he’d had the chance to talk about it on telly…

Taxpayer Still Subsidising Guardian

Back when they were in government Labour used to give the Guardian a helping hand by bunging them taxpayer cash for advertising departmental jobs in the paper. It was one example of government waste the Tories vowed to crack down on. Well in 2012 Maria Miller’s DCMS gave the Guardian £10,698 of taxpayers’ money “as part of the drive to attract a wider spectrum of candidates to the boards of our country’s institutions and encourage more diverse public appointments”. Every little helps…


Seen Elsewhere

Justice for England | Paul Goodman
Balls Still Wants to Spend, Spend, Spend | Mark Wallace
Chuka and Reeves on Manoeuvres | Mail
Don’t Allow Brussels Home Rule | Matt Ridley
Government Needs 10.6% Spending Cuts To Meet Target | IFS
What We Learned From the Referendum | FT
Scottish Crisis Moves South | Nick Wood
English Democrats Accidentally Celebrate Yes Victory | Pink News
Union In Its Current Form is Dead | Janan Ganesh
Labour Could Be Split in Two | Sun
Ashcroft Poll: Why Scotland Voted No | Buzzfeed


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Diane Abbott on the Daily Politics:

“Labour MPs will unite behind Ed Miliband, once we find out what our policies are.”



cynic says:

Can anyone help me? I went on holiday a week ago and returned to find someone has pulled out the stake and Gordon Brown is back and acting as Prime Minister. What did I miss? Has there been a snap election?


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