100% Inheritance Tax: Stupid or Evil?

Abi Wilkinson in The Guardian has a “utopian idea”, a 100% inheritance tax. Guido thinks that sounds more like a dystopian idea, against human nature, and a totalitarian idea in breach of our most fundamental human rights.  The only question Guido has outstanding: is the idea just stupid or is it evil?

“Sick Man of Europe” UK Outperforming Eurozone Rivals

The IMF’s downgrade of its growth forecast for the UK economy this year is being seized upon to pursue the narrative that Brexit is hurting Britain while Eurozone economies grow. One Guardian headline says the UK has become “the sick man of Europe”. If you look past the headlines it’s a different story…

The UK is predicted to grow 1.7% in 2017, more than France (1.5%) and Italy (1.3%). Not sure how that makes Britain the sick man of Europe. Germany is forecast to grow 1.8%, just 0.1% more than Britain – which is forecast to be in the middle of the G7 performance table. The supposedly burgeoning Euro area has a 1.9% growth forecast, described as “solid” by the IMF. That is only 0.2% higher than the apparently disastrous UK. And the Eurozone is growing at its slowest pace in six months. Britain’s forecast for 2018 remains unchanged at 1.5% growth. Breathless pundits can calm down…

Today’s “downgrade” to 1.7% this year should be viewed in the context of the IMF’s referendum forecast of negative growth for 2017 in the event of a Brexit vote. The new numbers are of course a massive upgrade on their original prediction. It wasn’t just Brexit that exposed the IMF sham – in 2014 Christine Lagarde asked “Do I have to go on my knees” as she grovelled to the British government for her incorrect forecasts about austerity. No one should be taking IMF forecasts seriously any more…

Kath Viner Not Keen on Seumas Affair Story

A Guardian source tells MediaGuido those photos of lefty lothario Seumas Milne were the talk of the newsroom yesterday. Hacks at Kings Place spent the day speculating about the identity of their former colleague’s blonde companion. Yet for some strange reason the tale doesn’t make today’s paper, despite being all over rival broadsheets. Seems editor Kath Viner is not keen on Seumas affair stories… 

Guardians of Nepotism


The Guardian attacked celebrity nepotism this weekend, training its sights on eighteen-year-old Brooklyn Beckham for the crime of securing a deal to author a coffee table photography book. You’d never find nepotism on Fleet Street, of course, where advancement is solely based on merit. Especially at the Guardian, where until recently former editor Alan Rusbridger had not only his wife but also his daughter writing for the paper at the same time. Comment writer Lindsay Mackie (AKA Mrs Rusbridger) still pens the odd piece under the new regime; daughter Bella Mackie (AKA Miss Rusbridger) started out as the ‘Community Editor’ for Comment Is Free and is now a senior editor at VICEIf only his dad worked there Brooklyn could be the Guardian’s football reporter…

Hospital Admits Sun Man Didn’t Impersonate Grenfell Relatives

An allegation made against a reporter working for the The Sun, whipped up by the Guardian and left-wing news sites, has turned out to be completely untrue. King’s College Hospital had “formally written” to IPSO to complain about a journalist who was accused of impersonating a friend or relative of a Grenfell victim while seeking an interview in the aftermath of the fire. The Sun strongly denied this at the time, and now the complaint has been withdrawn. A News UK spokesman said:

“They accepted that our reporter did not ‘impersonate relatives’ or ‘friends’. As a result of this the hospital has withdrawn any IPSO complaint.”

Will MediaGuardian, who sent this false allegation viral, ensure their correction is just as prominent?

Guardian Hack’s Ill-Advised Riot Tweet


Oops. Guardian news journalist Damien Gayle has tweeted out an article reporting police “would struggle to deal with a repeat of 2011 riots” along with the wink-wink-nudge-nudge comment: “you know what to do“. Challenged by the news editor of ITV News, Gayle doubled down:

Gayle has now deleted his post and tells MediaGuido:

“Yes, it was a rather stupid thing to tweet. I’ve deleted it after seeing the error of my ways. No offence was intended, and I’m sorry to those to whom it has been caused.”

Damien could teach John McDonnell a lesson in how to apologise for being silly.

Guardian Endorses Corbyn

In 1996, the Guardian wrote this about Jeremy Corbyn in a blistering leader column:

“Every few years, the London Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn indulges his romantic support for Irish republicans by using his parliamentary privileges to give them a publicity platform. These occasions always also provide a showcase for Mr Corbyn’s abiding qualities: his lack of wider political and moral judgment, his predilection for gesture politics, his insensitivity to the feelings of most Londoners and his indifference to the policies of his party… Mr Corbyn’s actions do not advance the cause of peace in Northern Ireland and are not seriously intended to do so. It is surprising that a politician as clever and important as the Sinn Fein leader should be bothered with him. Grown-up people ought to keep this childish sideshow in perspective. Mr Corbyn is a fool, and a fool whom the Labour Party would probably be better off without.”

21 years later, the paper has endorsed that “fool” to be Prime Minister:

“Mr Corbyn unquestionably has his flaws. Many see him as a fluke, a fringe candidate who stole the Labour leadership while the rest of his party was asleep. In parliament he failed to reach beyond his faction. He is not fluent on the issues raised by a modern, sophisticated digital economy. His record of protest explains why some struggle to see him as prime minister.

But Labour’s leader has had a good campaign. He has been energetic and effective on the stump, comfortable in his own skin and in the presence of others. He clearly likes people and is interested in them. He has generated an unfamiliar sense of the possible; once again, people are excited by politics. Most pundits think the voters will repudiate Mr Corbyn’s Labour party. They may do so. But Mr Corbyn has shown that the party might be the start of something big rather than the last gasp of something small. On 8 June, Labour deserves our vote.”

Labour under Corbyn on the cusp of something big, reckons the Guardian brains trust…

Guardian Publishes May Conspiracy Theory

You’d expect this sort of conspiratorial absurdity from Skwawkbox or Rufus Hound. Guardian hacks must be pretty embarrassed about their retirement ready cartoonist Steve Bell this morning.

Support Guardian’s First Class Journalism

Ever wondered how the Guardian spends the cash it gets from readers who give into those begging pop-ups?

£119 per first class ticket this morning…

Lovelorn Guardianistas Hit by Data Leak

Lovelorn Guardianistas are being bombarded with sexually explicit spam after their email addresses were exposed on the paper’s Soulmates dating site. Creepily, details from specific user’s profiles have been included alongside generic smut in the spam, causing subscribers to spill their almond lattes in fear. GNM has confirmed at least 17 users have been in touch to report the leak. One said:

“I basically had been receiving spam… directly referencing information that could only have come from the Soulmates database… It’s all information that I was happy to put online at one point anyway, but when it’s used outside of context like that it does feel a lot more creepy.”

The leak was first reported to The Guardian by an IT worker last November. They only replied confirming the leak last month, six months after being told. The newspaper reports heavily on data leaks by firms and in the public sector. It reported its own leak only after the story was broken by the BBC…

No, May Is Not Like Erdogan

Theresa May’s snap election has caused the Guardianista class to lose their minds. Martin Kettle writes that “Theresa May in Downing Street sounded like Turkey’s authoritarian president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan”. This is just bonkers. Erdogan is an Islamist autocrat who rules under a state of emergency, jailing political opponents, arresting journalists, controlling the airwaves, censoring social media and passing a law which could see him stay in power until 2029. Theresa May has called an election.

This tweet from Chuka Umunna is even more ridiculous. In the space of 20 words Chuka suggests May is behaving like a dictator because “she called an election”. Funny kind of dictator. It is just an election, chill out lefties…

Owen Jones Tells Corbyn to Consider Handover Agreement

After the Copeland result Owen Jones warned “this is not sustainable” and promised to write a Guardian column on Corbyn and Labour over the weekend. Well, it has just gone out – Owen tells Corbyn to consider a handover “agreement” to a younger left-wing Labour pretender:

“Corbyn is a decent, honourable and principled man. He has to make a decision, and so do his parliamentary opponents. Whatever happens with the leadership, he needs to set out a clear and coherent strategy about how exactly Labour can overcome its existential crisis. Since the byelection rout, he has made it clear he isn’t going anywhere without even offering the vaguest outlines about how to turn it around. That isn’t good enough: again, consider the stakes. Both he and his team have to think hard. If Corbyn decides he is unable to confront the multiple existential crises enveloping Labour, then an agreement should be struck where he can stand down in exchange for the guarantee of an MP from the new generation on the ballot paper who is committed to the policies that inspired Corbyn’s supporters in the first place. It is up to both Corbyn and the parliamentary Labour party. They should both be aware that history is a savage judge.

I understand the dilemma torturing so many who supported Corbyn. Lifelong commitment to a good and noble cause; fear that if Corbyn falls the cause will fall with him; yet fear that his project is failing badly and risks destroying the cause in any case. Not only the future of Labour but the future of this country depends on what the party decides. Either we become a country riddled with hatred and fear, a playground for billionaires, that slashes support for the working poor and disabled people, that runs down and flogs off the services we depend on; or a country run in the interests of the real wealth creators, working people.”

To paraphrase, either Corbyn stays and loses massively in 2020, destroying the hard-left for a generation, or he steps down and socialism lives to fight another day…

Bloomberg Thinks Bankers Bluffing About Brexodus

Remember that mass exodus from the City of London that was supposed to happen after the vote to Leave? In October British Bankers’ Association boss Anthony Browne predicted major banks would relocate in the first few months of 2017. The Observer reported:

“Britain’s biggest banks are preparing to relocate out of the UK in the first few months of 2017 amid growing fears over the impending Brexit negotiations, while smaller banks are making plans to get out before Christmas.”

At the time Guido offered Browne a £1,000 bet that not one leading bank will give up its UK banking licence next year to relocate to the EU.

As we enter March, even the City’s Remain-campaign-funding house journal Bloomberg is wondering “Are banks bluffing?”. Today they quote several City bosses who believe talk of an exodus is bluster. Jason Kennedy, CEO of finance recruitment firm Kennedy Group says:

“[The banks] are a bit like dogs backed into a corner and barking — it’s just noise. This is all about applying as much pressure as possible on the government to get the best deal. What have the banks have got to lose? Scream the house down and see what happens.”

“Barclays is planning to move only 150 jobs from London, if any”, Bloomberg reports, quoting their CEO Jes Staley:

“We don’t believe Brexit will result in a significant move of people away from London.”

“senior bank executive” believes “The banks are bluffing” and HSBC won’t move as many people as they have been threatening. And “One European banking boss quipped that the only way France would be top of his list would be if you turned it upside down”. Guido’s bet is still open to any takers…

Pro-Trump Twitter Bots Pumping Out Guardian Links

This is a weird one: a co-conspirator has noticed that large numbers of pro-Trump Twitter bots are endlessly pumping out links to the Guardian‘s website. Accounts with names like @TroopsTrump, @ViewTrump, @TrumpNoticie and @DonaldsNewws have been programmed by unknown persons to automatically tweet out Guardian stories, often about Brexit. The accounts have real human followers, meaning the automated tweets will be driving traffic towards the Guardian’s website, as well as inflating their social media sharing stats. Guido is stumped as to why someone controlling pro-Trump accounts would want to do this. Putin knows Seumas has left the Guardian, right?

Guardian Finds Support for UKIP in Stoke

Watch this Guardian video by John Harris and you might think UKIP are going to win in Stoke:

You can get 3/1 at the bookies

Guardian Won’t Pay Ethnic Minority Interns

The Guardian is offering an internship to Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic wannabe journos – but it won’t pay them. An advert states:

“The Guardian believes there should be a better representation of our diverse society in journalism, and each summer offers up to 12 two-week placements for students or graduates from BAME backgrounds… The scheme is unpaid, though reasonable daily travel expenses will be reimbursed.”

The following Guardian pieces will make good introductory reading for its lucky new interns:

Campaign group Intern Aware tell Guido: “For this scheme to be successful, The Guardian needs to ensure it’s affordable, particularly for people who don’t live in London.” Easy day one task: “Find me a story on unpaid internships!”

Seumas Officially Leaves Guardian

Guardian editor Kath Viner emails staff:

“I’m writing to let you know that, following a period of unpaid leave from Guardian News & Media, Seumas Milne has decided to continue in his role as the Labour party’s strategy and communications director, and is leaving the staff of the Guardian.

I would like to thank Seumas for his brilliant Guardian journalism, and we hope he’ll write for us again in the future.”

At last…

Sheen Comes off Guardian’s Brexit Luvvie Scoop

The Guardian breathlessly reported the conversion of Michael Sheen from luvvie-land board-treading to hardcore political activism this weekend:

“Michael Sheen plans to abandon his acting career to fight what he calls the rise of the “hard populist right” in Britain and beyond.”

The piece boasted:

“Although he has been based in Los Angeles for the past 14 years, home remains the South Wales steel town of Port Talbot, which voted overwhelmingly for Brexit in the June referendum – a result that initially left the actor “sad and frustrated” but then determined to fight back.”

Unfortunately, by Sheen’s own admission, none of this is true. The actor – whose agent must have had a fit – posted a blog on his personal Tumblr feed later the same day completely denying the story:

“I did one interview with The Times of London a few weeks ago, parts of which (including a headline that is not a quote) have been picked up by a lot of other outlets. I DID NOT declare that I’m ‘quitting acting and leaving Hollywood’ to go into politics.”

He continued:

“I certainly did NOT equate people who voted for Brexit or Trump with a fascistic ‘hard right’ that must be stopped. The majority of people in the U.K., including my hometown of Port Talbot, voted for Brexit. That is the will of the people and is to be respected. That is democracy.”

The Guardian’s piece remains uncorrected…

BBC: Thatcher Most Influential Woman of Last 70 Years

Maggie Thatcher will top the Radio 4 Woman’s Hour Power List today, a roll of honour that “celebrates the seven women who’ve made the biggest impact on women’s lives over the past seven decades”. Awkward for Auntie, who broke its own golden rule of news writing – always put the most important line first – to bury Thatcher’s victory in the fourth paragraph of an online piece. Instead they led with Bridget Jones, who came sixth out of seven on the list. Meanwhile, from The Guardian:

One panel member, Ayesha Hazarika, a former adviser to the Labour MP Harriet Harman, said she felt “uncomfortable” with the choice of Thatcher, but said the list was about celebrating impact “both positive and negative”.

As the Mrs T once said: “I owe nothing to Women’s Lib”…

Owen Jones’ Trotskyist Journey

In August Owen Jones blasted Tom Watson for saying Momentum is ridden with Trots:

“The political significance of British Trotskyism is minimal… in the grand scheme of things, they are just irrelevant… There are too few Trotskyist activists to have any decisive impact on a party as big as Labour now is.”

Then in September Owen attacked Channel 4 for their exposé on Momentum Trots, saying the group have been:

“demonised by the media as a sinister rabble of Trotskyist infiltrators… Rather than being led by revolutionary disciples of Leon Trotsky, most of Momentum’s leaders aren’t really ideologues of any sort”

Today Owen says – wait for it – Momentum is ridden with Trotskyist entryists![…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Alan Sugar on Jeremy Corbyn:

“It’s clear you alluded to students refunds to get votes from young impressionable people. You are a cheat and should resign.”

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