Stagnant Staggers Struggles for Staffers

With job openings in journalism a rarity these days, with newspapers laying off staff left right and centre, graduate schemes having thousands of applicants for one place and talk of not paying interns laughed out of the media world, you would think the post of assistant editor to a once prestigious and well read magazine would have the applications flooding in. Not at this dying magazine though…

The New Statesman have had to extend the application process for their assistant editor, presumably because of a lack of interest or quality hats thrown in the ring. Who wouldn’t want to be responsible for the dirth of talent at the struggling magazine?

With such cutting edge insight from the Political Editor Mehdi Hasan such as “The next Labour leader will be called Miliband and the renowned “Mr Scoop” himself, James Macintyre on board, the job would be a breeze, just watch out for those writs. With circulation rapidly heading for rock bottom – just the libraries that subscribe – perhaps those budding lefty hacks have realised the Staggers is a place to end your career rather than start it…

UPDATE: Mehdi got in touch to insist that he is not the Political Editor but the Senior Editor (Political). If that is the only part of the story he could find to refute then things were worse than Guido thought….

Guy News: Staggers Continues to Promote Smears

Despite having paid substantial damages and apologising to Daniel Hannan, the New Statesman‘s website is still actively promoting James Macintyre’s smear from last August against the leader of the conservative grouping in the European Parliament, Michal Kaminski:

Macintyre better hope Kaminski isn’t feeling litigious about this accusation. The Chief Rabbi of Poland accused Macintyre of misrepresenting  his views.  Chief Rabbi Michael Schudrich cleared Kaminski of the charge of being an anti-semite, and if anyone should know, he should know. Macintyre, as this video shows, still accuses Kaminski of being “a former neo-nazi”.

UPDATE: A gruff James Macintyre couldn’t get off the phone quick enough when Guy News asked whether he stood by the accusation that Kaminski was a “former neo-nazi”. “I refer you to my original email and have nothing else to say“, whatever that means. Let’s see what his boss and New Statesman publisher Spencer Neil has to say about it…

Staggers Coughs for Slurs

Former intimate friend of Derek Draper, James MacIntyre, the New Statesman’s wayward political editor, got his fingers well and truly burnt in a smear straight out of the MacBride/Draper play-book. Macintyre has been moaning about the apparent easy ride the Tories are getting in the press. It seems he likes to hold them to extreme accounts, regardless of the truth. It took Guido days to trawl around for the last edition of the New Statesman but he finally managed to snatch one from a passed-out tramp. Hidden away in it was this apology:

A Carter-Rucking later and a substantial five figure sum gives us confirmation of what was already common knowledge in the  Westminster village: make-it-up-Macintyre smears Conservatives as racists.

Staggering Hypocrisy

Given what a shining New Statesman’s James Macintyre took to top freelance totty Rowenna Davis, it was only going to be a matter of time before she ended up writing for the struggling magazine. Last month she wrote a piece slamming parliamentarian’s use of unpaid interns suggesting that “MPs’ dependence on unpaid interns gives those from richer backgrounds a headstart on breaking into politics.” A fair point perhaps, so what’s this Guido reads? “The New Statesman Brand and Project Department is looking for an intern…” Paid? Yeah right…

Staggeringly Shocking

Guido is frankly surprised with Mehdi Hasan’s latest article In Defence of Ed Balls.  Not that the ‘senior political editor’ of the New Statesman is defending the indefensible, it is his admission that “I don’t know him. Never met him.”

How do you get to be a ‘senior political editor’ of a supposedly serious political journal without ever having met Ed Balls?  Staggering.

Who Really Broke the Hoon-Hewitt Scoop?

As so often happens, who broke the story first is fiercely contested.  Guido doesn’t have a dog in this fight, but for the record, since the Staggers is trying to cite Guido as evidence to back up its claim that it broke the news, here is the timeline:

  • Unnoticed by Guido when it happened was Andy Sparrow’s PMQs live-blog, which had this at 11:57:

    11.57 am: Hot news: We’ve just heard that Geoff Hoon and Patricia Hewitt are going to make some kind of statement about Brown’s leadership after PMQs. That’s all I know at the moment.

  • The first Guido knew was when someone shouted out across the newsroom after Andy Sparrow’s Tweet came up on the Guy News Tweetdeck screen, that was time-stamped at 12:01.
  • The Guardian’s website also had a teaser headline at 12:15.
  • The New Statesman at 12:17 publishes what it calls an Exclusive that “A letter is being circulated among Labour MPs this afternoon calling for a secret ballot on Gordon Brown’s leadership. According to one MP who would like Brown to leave office, the letter is being co-ordinated by a number of rebels, including the former cabinet ministers Charles Clarke, Patricia Hewitt and Geoff Hoon.”

So there you have it. The Guardian was first, though in the augmented reality of the Staggers It was the NS wot got itIn reality, you snooze, you lose, it ain’t news.

Sparrow told Guido that “it would be nice to take the credit myself, but actually Patrick Wintour obtained the information.” Incidentally, Guido understands that ITN’s Channel 4 News has changed policy on breaking news.  Whereas it restricted scoops to the 7 p.m. broadcast they now put it up as soon as they can on the website and tweet the link.  A cultural change for a mainstream media source.  Steve Hilton getting nicked was tweeted last night by Cathy Newman in advance of telly viewers being told.

It almost goes without saying that Guido tries to be first.  If not first, fast.  When inevitably occasionally wrong, not for long.  We no longer have news cycles, we have news streams…

Why No One Reads the New Statesman Anymore (Part 96)

James Macintyre says that his Downing Street sources say that their private polling shows Labour ahead in the polls.

Not sure if this is the same source that told him Blair would be President of Europe

Speccie v Staggers on Communism and Circulation


In the week we celebrate the Fall of the Wall (more in this coming week’s Guidogram) the covers of our political weeklies are worth comparing.  The Speccie reveals and condemns Soviet agents at the highest levels of the Labour Party.  The New Statesman glories in a cover with a flattering (old) picture of the communist tyrant Fidel Castro.  On the inside is a feature on his allegedly ‘popular’ variant of socialism.  So popular is Castro’s socialism that he has turned the island into a prison, locked up dangerous poets, not held an election in half a century and jailed dissident democrats.  No mention in the article of the people who to attempt to flee to Miami on floats made out of car tyres or the level of destitution to which the country has been reduced.  Perhaps Castro is popular in the same way that the Staggers is ‘popular’.   Up to date ABC circulation figures are no longer available, but the suspicion is that since they have got rid of the adult political reporters the weekly circulation has gone below 20,000 – less than the daily readership of this blog.  Online data  since the beginning of the year shows the relative downward trend:

Relative Trends

Perhaps if it was more in the real world politically – the latest claim is that the Chief Rabbi of Poland is a Tory stooge – the downward trend of the Staggers might be arrested.  Perhaps they are hoping, vainly in Guido’s view, that a change of government will boost circulation…

Kaminski : “New Statesman’s Shoddy Journalism”

Almost every time Guido writes about James Macintyre an email arrives in the inbox complaining about everything from mis-spelling his name to not giving the whole truth. Once he complained bitterly that some nuance was wrong (that he hadn’t formally […]


The Relaunch of the New Statesman

Guido v New Statesman v Speccie

The graphic above shows how the New Statesman has lost ground over the last two years.  With the paid-for print circulation now in the low teens of thousands it has only a quarter of the Spectator’s paid-for circulation.   Online the […]


Give Us a Job Ed

The low circulation New Statesman continues to fascinate Guido, a co-conspirator has sent in an example of a lavish bit of sycophancy which really deserves a bigger audience.

ns_logoYou may remember that James Macintyre was not so long ago bitterly […]


Muddled Mehdi

mehdiMehdi Hasan is the New Statesman’s ‘Senior Politics Editor’. He gets a lot of flack from the Islamophobic Jihadis-Under-the-Bed crowd for being soft on Islamo-Fascism.  They variously accuse him of wanting to sublimate the West to a new Caliphate […]


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Quote of the Day

Lord Sugar on Jeremy Corbyn:

“If they ever got anywhere near electing him and him being the Prime Minister then I think we should all move to China or somewhere like that and let this place just rot.”

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