Paxman's Beard Releases Statement

Jeremy Paxman has just released this statement through Newsnight:

“I have grown a beard for the last few summers, and suddenly wondered whether I really needed to shave it off to present Newsnight. Unless you’re lucky enough to be Uncle Albert on Only Fools and Horses, Demis Roussos or Abu Hamza, the BBC is generally as pognophobic as the late-lamented Albanian dictator, Enver Hoxha. I may keep it or I may shave it off, but I think I’ll make my own decision.”

Well keeping people guessing is one way to get those suffering viewing figures up…

Newsnight Back in the News

Congratulations to Newsnight for generating headlines without managing to  cover up a paedo-scandal, implode into an inter-staff war or smear someone as a nonce. No its not the influence of their new editor Ian Katz either.  Guido thinks Paxman’s new beard is marvelous.

Watch: Tim Yeo Stung By Sunday Times Offered To Be £7,000-a-Day Advocate and Lobby Government

It’s all over for Tim Yeo. The Energy and Climate Change select committee chairman has been stung by the Sunday Times, offering to become a paid advocate for a fake firm for £7,000-a-day.

“The reporters approached Yeo posing as representatives of a solar energy company offering to hire him as a paid advocate to push for new laws to boost its business for a fee of £7,000 a day. He told them he could commit to at least one day a month, despite the fact that he already held four private jobs and was in negotiations to take a further two. Setting out what he could offer, the MP said: “If you want to meet the right people, I can facilitate all those introductions and I can use the knowledge I get from what is quite an active network of connections.” Asked if that extended to government figures, Yeo replied: “Yes.” The House of Commons code of conduct forbids members from acting as paid advocates, including by lobbying ministers. Yeo also said he could help them by guiding them on submitting evidence to his own committee, which he described as “a good way of getting your stuff on the map”.”

Confirming what we knew all along: Yeo is one of parliament’s most shameless Honorable Members. Guido has hunted him for years, you can read all this blog’s stories on Yeo here. Westminster is for sale…

UPDATE: Funny that he mentions his “active network”, on Newsnight a couple of years ago Guido accused Yeo of of abusing his position as an MP to facilitate a green investment network. He threatened to sue…

Katz Leaving a Sinking Ship

A cunning move by Ian Katz, jumping from the Guardian to Newsnight. The heir apparent is the latest lefty print figure to join the Beeb. Guido reckons he will return to Kings Place eventually, as the editor of a multi-platform, video-led converged Guardian. He can bide his time while Alan Rusbridger wrings his hands for a few more years as the print figures continue to crash and the mass sackings become inevitable. Smart...

The appointment has not gone down well with everyone. BBC types and government sources are moaning to the Speccie, while a Tory source tells Guido: “At this rate Alastair Campbell will be presenting. Given the huge salaries the Guardian pay, the BBC need to disclose how much they are billing the license-fee payer for Mr Katz.” Mr Paxman was unavailable for comment…

Newsnight Parent Governor Actually Labour Activist


Last night’s Newsnight panel on free schools was made up of two headteachers, a former teacher and the suspiciously anti-Tory Lucy Reese, billed as “a parent governor from Camden where primary schools have the best Ofsted outcomes in the country”. What they didn’t tell you is that Reese is actually a Labour activist, touted earlier this year as a potential council candidate for upmarket Primrose Hill. A writer for Left Futures, when Reese isn’t helping out at her local primary school she knocks on doors telling people to vote for Ed. Must have slipped their mind…

Full Jeremy Paxman Statement on Entwistle Resignation

Statement from Jeremy Paxman:

“George Entwistle’s departure is a great shame. He has been brought low by cowards and incompetents.

The real problem here is the BBC’s decision, in the wake of the Hutton Inquiry, to play safe by appointing biddable people.

They then compounded the problem by enforcing a series of cuts on programme budgets, while bloating the management

That is how you arrive at the current mess on Newsnight. I very much doubt the problem is unique to that programme.

I had hoped that George might stay to sort this out.It is a great pity that a talented man has been sacrificed. While time-servers prosper.

I shall not be issuing any further statements or doing any interviews.”

Right, so who is next for the chop?

Parliamentary Privilege and Criminality

Parliamentary privilege was cited last night by David Grossmann in his Newsnight report as being an obstacle to bringing Denis MacShane to trial, the Labour MP John Mann disagrees:

On Friday Guido was tipped off by a source close to the Standards and Privileges Committee that once they had published their report the way was open for the police to resume their investigations. After consulting a barrister, who was in absolutely no doubt that parliamentary privilege was no longer an obstacle, Guido wrote to Scotland Yard asking them to resume the case – as did the Tory MP Philip Davies.

In 2009 we did the same for Jim Devine who, like Denis MacShane, submitted falsified invoices to back up expense claims. You may recall that David Chaytor, Elliot Morley and Jim Devine went to the Supreme Court to argue that they were protected by parliamentary privilege. They attempted to use the 300-year-old law to argue that any case against them should be dealt with by Parliament rather than the courts. The Supreme Court ruled that expense fiddles were ordinary crimes not covered by parliamentary privilege. Devine was sentenced to 16 months…

Explosive Newsnight in Pipeline

If the lawyers don’t spike it, tonight’s Newsnight could be pretty spectacularly explosive. Bureau of Investigative Journalism hack Iain Overton has been working on a major story that is currently being legalled.

Hopefully George Entwistle has not commissioned any forthcoming Christmas specials about said politician…

Red Ken's Future Terror Career

Ken’s promise to quit politics may well have been just another lie, but judging by his performance on Newsnight last night Guido has a new suggestion for his next career move: counter-terrorism. After revealing his expertise on lone psychopaths, scaremongering Ken told Kirsty: “you don’t catch Al-Qaeda by looking through their lunchbox“.[…]


Michael White Owes Guido An Apology

The controversial Downing Street Second Email System story is back in the news. In 2007 in the middle of Blair’s Loans for Lordships crisis and the arrest of Downing Street officials by police searching for evidence, Guido alleged that there was a second, unofficial, email system in Downing Street used to send off-the-record emails.[…]


Eddie Mair's Newsnight Heebie-Jeebies

Lots of confusion last night as Newsnight viewers tuned in to find Eddie Mair from Radio 4 in Paxo’s chair. And he did rather well, if he was a little gloomy:

With a fresh face around, many are wondering if Paxo is too old.[…]


Newsnight Hits Rock Bottom

The TV viewing figures for the first half of 2012 contained one very significant side note: Newsnight has been outperformed by Channel 4 News. A blow to the pride of Newsnight, Channel 4 News had an average of 0.699 million viewers while Newsnight managed only a meagre 0.664 million.[…]


WATCH: Cocky Ken Promises to Publish

“Good, that’s easy.”

Just hours after declaring that he would release his income details Ken has shattered another promise.

Video via Liar Politicians


Play #Newsnight KEN-GO!

Tonight Newsnight is hosting a four-way debate – with the BBC giving the Greens the fourth seat despite UKIP currently polling higher. During the debate Ken will no doubt make his usual magic money promises and claim that Boris plans to kill all London’s first born sons.[…]


Watch:  Crick Gets Cricked

Filmed live at the Barley Mow, Westminster.[…]


Newsnight Fashion Report

Last night Jeremy Paxman hosted the final round of Twitter’s Next Top Model. And what a heated final it was…

Taking Newsnight by storm was GQ’s cover-girl Louise Mensch. The successful chick-lit author sported a vintage cocktail dress, with a simple yet elegant jacket, Mensch perfectly mixed old school Tory for a sexy new-age feel.[…]


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