A cabal of left-wing MPs have, predictably, smelt blood and are going after Jeremy Clarkson. For anyone waking up from a four-day coma, Clarkson is under siege for writing a Sun column railing against Meghan Markle. One paragraph parodied a Game of Thrones scene:
“At night, I’m unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while the crowds chant, ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her.”
Given Markle is the least popular member of the royal family bar Prince Andrew, Guido guesses many Brits may have been inclined to broadly agree with the sentiment of the piece. Instead the London-centric Twitter-sphere is apoplectic; getting the column taken down and forcing Clarkson into a sorry-not-sorry climbdown.
Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it. In a column I wrote about Meghan, I made a clumsy reference to a scene in Game of Thrones and this has gone down badly with a great many people. I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future.— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) December 19, 2022
For some reason, lefty MPs feel that this important issue is today’s national priority. Rather than the strikes, the economy, war on our continent, or at the very least just logging off ahead of Christmas…
Tory-in-name-only MP Caroline Nokes has spearheaded a letter on behalf of those “hurt” by Jezza’s “#NotAnApology”, demanding he instead issue “an unreserved apology… to Ms Markle immediately”.
“We further demand definitive action is taken to ensure no article like this is ever published again.”
The letter is signed by 64 MPs, mainly Labour and SNP. Guido notes that whichever of Nokes’s staff formatted the letter isn’t particularly savvy, given the top name of the second column is Clive Lewis. An MP whose primary contribution to feminism thus far was telling a woman to “get on your knees bitch”.
Guido’s no stranger to defending Clarkson in times of career trouble. The BBC, despite dismissing him for a fracas in 2015, often stood by him during rows about things he’d said or written.
Guido’s not so confident that the likes of Amazon – American distributors of his brilliant farming show – will have the same backbone this time around…
UPDATE: Meanwhile, the official letter from MPs accusing the Sun of editorial sloppiness includes signatories spelt as follows:
According to a source officials from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have contacted Amazon asking them to remove fake police IDs, wallets and warrant cards currently available on the website. At the time of going to pixel the police-style paraphernalia is still available for purchase on amazon.co.uk. Impersonating a police officer is an offence, Amazon enabling the offence is not…
In a move that absolutely no one could have predicted, Amazon have announced the government’s 2% Digital Services Tax is to be passed straight onto consumers. Guido presumes the government line on this one will be full Brass Eye: ‘This is the one thing we didn’t want to happen’…
A post on the Amazon Services forum announces that, while the legislation was being passed, the company “absorbed this increase”, however now the law has been implemented they
“will be increasing Referral fees, Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) fees, monthly FBA storage fees and Multichannel Fulfilment (MCF) fees by 2% in the UK to reflect this additional cost”
UK businesses who rely on goods from Amazon will now have to fork out for the rise, with the government not getting a penny from Amazon’s coffers. The government should take this tax policy failure into account before considering the rumoured online sales tax for a moment longer…
Guido doesn’t want to pay extra taxes “to save the High Street”. In fact it seems quite obvious that millions of people like getting cheaper goods delivered direct to their door. Of course rivals want to handicap their competitors in their own self-interest. Perhaps politicians should side with consumers rather than producers for once?
Converting high streets into residential streets might even help with high-priced housing costs in urban areas. Which will please younger voters!
Margaret Hodge is calling for people to join her in boycotting Amazon over their tax arrangements:
“I hope people take a leaf out of my book and stop using Amazon. I don’t use them at all… If we stop using Amazon then they may understand how angry their customers are.”
You can read more about Hodge’s strong and principled views on Amazon in her book Called to Account, for sale on Amazon:
“I don’t use them at all…”
— Ian Sherwood (@ian_surewould) February 28, 2017
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the plumbing that makes a lot of the internet work, not just for Amazon but for a lot of other big companies – our daily Guidogram email didn’t go out last night because it relied on AWS. It was by one of those cosmic ironies also the day Amazon’s marketing people had decided to call “AWSome Day”. The above video is of a hapless Amazon booster discovering he can’t make his presentation about the brilliance of the AWS cloud because it was down. Even the geek’s website isitdownrightnow.com, used for checking if internet services are down, relied on AWS:
Rivals have not wasted any time, in Guido’s inbox this morning was an offer from Google Cloud Services:
AWS going down for a few hours reminded people that there is no such thing as “the cloud”. There are just other people’s computers…