Seumas Milne’s Closeness to Guardian Editor

There has been consternation in Labour circles and at the Guardian over Seumas Milne being allowed to work for Jeremy Corbyn while “on leave” from King’s Place. The bizarre arrangement suggests he still has his column waiting for him if and when things go south with Jezza. How was the curious deal allowed to go ahead?

Guido hears that the key factor was his very close personal relationship with Guardian editor Kath Viner. The couple have been close friends for years and Kath is known to have always loved his column. Though staff on the paper have been perplexed at why £340,000-a-year Viner, a relative moderate politically, is so enamoured with the handsome revolutionary firebrand. Kath – 44 years-old and unmarried – is such a close ally of Seumas that he even “canvassed on her behalf for several months” when she was campaigning for the editorship. Sources say he was drumming up support for her “night and day 24/7”, causing many raised eyebrows at the time. The Guardian and the Labour leadership are closer than they’ve ever been…

Guardian Seeks Digital-Friendly Pol Ed

Last month Guido brought you the news that Guardian political editor Patrick Wintour is stepping down. It seems new editor Kath Viner is looking for someone a bit more digital-friendly.

“Understanding of social media” is “a strong advantage” says the job advert, going on to stress the successful candidate will have to “embrace social media as part of the Guardian’s commitment to open journalism and engagement of our audience”. Not only that, they will be “willing to embrace different media and non-text ways of telling stories“. You don’t even need to have inky fingers to apply, experience on a “national website” will do.

That said, “experience in front of camera” is described as “desirable“, which is good news for telegenic chief political correspondent Nick Watt. The deadline for applications is two weeks today. Anyone with a Twitter account or blog can apply here. No, they can’t afford Guido…

UPDATE: Kath Viner emails Guardian staff:

“After an extraordinary 27 years working in the lobby for the Guardian and the Observer, the last nine of them as political editor for the Guardian, Patrick Wintour has decided it’s time to move on. Patrick will become diplomatic editor, reporting to the international desk in London. I’d like to thank him for all his incredible hard work over such a long period. Julian Borger becomes world affairs editor, and will move to Washington DC next year.”

Zoe Williams: “I Really Don’t Have a Problem” With Protesters Spitting at Journalists

Guardian charmer Zoe Williams has told the Daily Politics “I really don’t have a problem” with protesters spitting on her journalist colleagues:

“The fact that some people spit and throw eggs… actually I think there is a kind of persistent exclusion from some voices in the debate and you cannot blame people for ultimately becoming quite angry. I really don’t have a problem with it.”

So much for solidarity among hacks, eh.

Reporter Owen Bennett, who along with Michael Crick and LBC’s Theo Usherwood was gobbed on in Manchester, unsurprisingly took exception. Fair to say Zoe did not cover herself in further glory.

Owen has offered to take Zoe for a coffee to discuss why gobbing on journalists is actually not okay. Careful she doesn’t spit on you…

Guardian Writer on Jewish Journalist: “F**k Him, They Should Cut His Throat”

Readers will remember Richard Seymour, the very angry blogger who has written for the Guardian over 100 times but probably won’t again after his slur against Falklands hero Simon Weston. Seymour has covered himself in more glory by hoping that a Jewish journalist gets his throat cut by Palestinian terrorists:

Seymour hasn’t written for the Guardian since the turn of the year. Presumably he didn’t spend his spare time attending anger management classes…

Guardian Grumbles Over #Jones4Jez

More than one Portcullis House onlooker noted Owen Jones working the atrium with Corbyn fixer John McDonnell and Jezza’s son on Wednesday afternoon. Whispers from the Guardian newsroom suggest the paper – which backed Cooper – is less than delighted by his overt support for Corbyn during the last few weeks. “He’s never pretended to be a journalist, he’s an activist who writes a column”, says one Kings Place source: “I haven’t seen him in the office for ages“. They point to Owen being on stage and sitting next to Corbyn at nearly all of his most recent rallies. Meanwhile it is being mooted in mischievous Labour circles that OJ might make it official and take a job on Jez’s team once the revolution comes. Surely a very severe case of gallows humour… 

Climate Change Crowd Board Refugee Bandwagon

climate chnage isis

The Guardian and New Statesman have uncovered the true cause of the migrant crisis. Nope, forget war, ISIS and Assad, it’s… climate change!

A piece in this week’s Staggers – which has received a robust response from critics – evokes the image of 3 year old Aylan Kurdi to crudely warn that failure to reach an agreement at the upcoming Paris climate summit will lead to “many more bodies being washed up on our beaches”:

“That image, which few of us will ever completely erase from our mind, will no doubt prompt David Cameron to make a renewed gesture… In Paris this December the world will try to reach agreement on combating the dangerous climate change that Syria and North Africa are already experiencing. Without agreement there, we in the rich world will have to get used to our trains being disrupted, our borders controls being breached and many more bodies being washed up on our beaches.”

Today the Guardian join in, publishing an editorial by Friends of the Earth CEO Craig Bennett, also using the picture to claim things will get worse if we fail to tackle climate change:

“We’re all human, and so it’s perhaps not surprising that it takes a single photograph and an individual’s story to shake a society, all too belatedly, into glimpsing at one horrific aspect of Europe’s refugee crisis and demanding action…. People from across the political spectrum have come together in the last week to demand a much stronger response from David Cameron to the refugee crisis, and rightly so. But if the government continues to move backwards on climate change, then we should get ready for a much bigger refugee crisis before very long.”

Stay classy…

Guardian Writer’s Vile Slur Against Falklands Hero

Earlier this week Falklands hero Simon Weston, whose suffered 46% burns and whose face was left unrecognisable after RFA Sir Galahad was bombed by the Argentinians, said that Jeremy Corbyn’s policy on the Falklands was tantamount to “surrender“. This is how regular Guardian writer and editor of the ‘Lenin’s Tomb’ blog, Richard Seymour, responded to the story:

Seymour tells his critics he only had a freelance contract with the Guardian for three years, but he wrote on average at least fortnightly for the paper’s website during 2014. What a charmer…

“Full, Open and Transparent Process” For New Guardian Pol Ed

Whispers emanating from both the Lobby and the Guardian newsroom suggest Patrick Wintour’s tenure as political editor could soon be over. The rumour doing the rounds is that his telegenic deputy, Nick Watt, has caught the eye of new editor Kath Viner. There is however some discontent among Guardianistas that politically centrist Watt is not as Corbynista-friendly as they would like. Watt will only tell Guido:

“There will be a full, open, transparent process. You should apply!”

Wintour is sixty and has had a career spanning almost 40 years, nine as Guardian Pol Ed. Wintour is not commenting on the matter. Will he retire to a lingering Michael White style comment role, or is there one last big pay cheque lined up? Buzzfeed are hiring…

Guardian Endorses Cooper: Readers React

The Guardian comes out for Cooper:

“The brute lesson of May is that Labour cannot get there without first winning back significant numbers of Tory voters. Mr Corbyn will not do that. Those searching for an election winner must look elsewhere…

Liz Kendall has shown courage in telling Labour audiences what they don’t want to hear about the need to win Tory votes, but she lacks experience, and too often appears to be reopening the Blair playbook. Andy Burnham is personable and has passion, but has zig-zagged too often in this campaign to be seen as a leader.

Yvette Cooper is more steadfast, consistently challenging George Osborne on economic terrain… The right leader is the person who can bring both Jeremy Corbyn and Liz Kendall together in one big, progressive tent, offering enough moral common ground to transcend deep disagreements on policy. It is a formidably difficult task, but there are very many in Britain who desperately need someone to pull it off. The person best placed to do that is Yvette Cooper.”

And their readers are not taking it well:

Splitters…

Guardian Grovel Over “Insidious” Hit Piece

The Guardian’s readers’ editor has censured the editor of its opinion desk for writing a hatchet job on anti-extremism campaigner Maajid Nawaz. Chris Elliott blasts David Shariatmadari’s interview as “insidious” and “wrong“:

“The editorial guidelines state clearly that if a journalist thinks there is a case to be made for using pejorative anonymous quotations the matter should be discussed with a senior editor. In this case these were discussed and the editor approved the use of the quotations… the use of anonymous quotes is an insidious way to take a swipe at public figures, and the Guardian was wrong to have used three in this way”

Intriguingly, Elliott also investigated whether the Guardianset him up“, revealing a gushing email sent by commissioning editor Nosheen Iqbal to Nawaz prior to the piece being written. This is how Iqbal got Nawaz to take part:

“Given Maajid’s consistently dedicated work to combat extremism and the increased public awareness around Quilliam Foundation following the PM’s speech yesterday, would be great to build on that momentum and flag up the crucial work being done behind the scenes.”

You wouldn’t have guessed it would be a hit job, would you?

Judging by this tweet critcising Nawaz the day before she sent that email, Iqbal wasn’t being entirely truthful about her motives for commissioning the piece:

Given the Guardian regularly gives a platform to terrorists and Islamic extremists, it’s ironic to see how they treat someone who campaigns against extremism…

Guardianisation of Buzzfeed Continues

The Guardian’s head of news is the latest to twig that former colleagues who’ve jumped to Buzzfeed are getting paid more money for less work:

Millar joins Janine Gibson and James Ball as part of the ongoing exodus from Kings Place to their more productivity-relaxed internet alter ego.

(•◡•) / (•◡•) / (•◡•) /

Owen Jones: Then and Now

Owen Jones, 4 May 2015: “Russell Brand has endorsed Labour – and the Tories should be worried.”

Owen Jones, 4 August 2015: “The Right are mocking Jeremy Corbyn because they fear him.”

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose…

The Corbian Hiring

guardian front page

The journal of record for Corbynistas is advertising for a “Wealth Correspondent”.  Are they thinking of launching an FT-style “How to spend it” section?

According to an email from Kath Viner (basic salary £340,000) they will cover “the wealth gap and the super-rich elite” Sort of like “How they spend it”? 

We are looking for a wealth correspondent to write news articles, features, liveblogs, interviews, background and other material on the wealth gap and the super-rich elite. Combining financial literacy with first-rate storytelling, you will generate exclusive news stories with national and international impact, focusing on the super-wealthy, their lives, their influence, and the impact they have on society.

Guido’s source inside King’s Place says “The wealth correspondent is a Corbyn correspondent by another name. Place has gone nuts for Corbyn. People like Freedland and Kettle are walking around in a daze.” Apparently when Corbyn came in the fan hysteria was worse even than when Benedict Cumberbatch visited…

Wintour is Coming… To Serve the Beverages

plane

It sounds like Guardian Pol Ed Patrick Wintour enjoyed flying with the PM back from Asia. The Speccie have the inside story from 35,000 feet:

“Wintour – who appeared to be enjoying the champagne on offer – decided the time had come for him to be a trolley dolly and assisted an air hostess by taking the other end of the trolley.

To the surprise of ministers on the plane, he made his way down the aisle putting ice and lemon in the cups, and getting drinks out of the drawers on his side of the trolley, repeatedly shouting ‘this is so easy’.”

Must have been the jet lag…

Jingoism from Guardianistas Over FT Sale

BN-JN369_NIKKEI_G_20150723113951

There’s been an outbreak of jingoistic fervour among media luvvies following yesterday’s announcement that Japan’s Nikkei bought the FT for £844 million.

First there was a glorious moment on Newsnight last night when Kirsty Wark felt the need to assure Will Hutton “I’m not suggesting you’re a racist at all” as she questioned his line that foreign owners of British media might not have the correct “purpose“.

Wark: What you seem to be suggesting is, that there should be some kind of imperial protectionism here

Hutton: I’m not suggesting that at all, what I’m saying is…

Wark: I’m not suggesting you’re a racist at all

This morning we have the odd declaration on the Guardian‘s front page that it is “British based” and “British owned“. Complete with a Union Jack Flag..

guardian front page

Odd when you consider that the Guardian wins its prized Pulitzers in the US and keeps its assets untaxed in the Cayman Islands…

Guardian: Attack of the Killer Climate Change Slides

playground

The Guardian‘s weatherwatch blog has outdone itself with a scare piece warning that “the increasingly hot British sun is seen as a safety hazard” for children playing in the park.

guardian killer slide

“In America and Australia there are government health warnings to parents about the danger of their children getting burned on playground equipment that has been heated up in the summer sun…This has not been considered a hazard in England but it is now.

There is now a great deal of discussion between the local council, insurers and RoSPA, the accident prevention experts, on how to proceed now that the increasingly hot British sun is seen as a safety hazard on children’s play equipment.”

What a load of hot air…

New Guardian Editor Names and Shames Traffic De-Link-quent Hacks

New Guardian editor Kath Viner is making her mark at King’s Place. Busy news journalists were grateful for this urgent missive yesterday, reminding them of “one of the most important elements of… good journalism” – adding links to previous Guardian articles in your copy to game traffic. She is even naming and shaming hacks who don’t comply.

One of the easiest things everyone can do is link to other Guardian stories when writing a Guardian story.

It’s very simple (highlight the word; Apple K; paste in link) and yet is one of the most important elements of digital practice and good journalism. It gives readers context and background, and it drives traffic.

It’s especially relevant for reporters and writers; simply add as many relevant links as you can to previous articles (which may well include items you wrote yourself). Although desk editors and subs often help out after the fact, it’s not their responsibility — the person who wrote the story is best-placed to know the linkable items that will be most helpful to readers.

Ophan has a particular page to show the most-read pieces on a given day which contain no internal links. Here is yesterday’s list of shame.

If you’re unsure how to do it, feel free to have a discreet word with anyone on the desks, or Chris Moran.

Get linking please!

Thanks,
Kath

Newshounds breaking stories might unfairly sniff at Viner’s features background, but she is of course completely correct. You can read Guido’s past stories on the Guardian and Ms. Viner here and here

Guardian Heatwave Liveblog Closes After Servers Overheat

There we all were enjoying the Guardian’s heatwave liveblog…

When disaster struck…

To make things worse, the air con at King’s Place packed in as well:

“There is currently a fault with the main chiller unit for the building.”

Staff have now been sent home:

Dear all

Because of the heat we are having some problems with cooling key systems. We will be shutting down all systems at 4.15 today so please save everything and log off. We would like people to go home unless they are involved in the newspaper edition or the website. Please take home laptops in case we need people to work from home tomorrow. We will keep you updated so please keep checking emails and, if in doubt, talk to your line manager.

Sheila

Remember to look out for vulnerable newspaper neighbours in this period of extreme weather…

Grauniad’s Counter-Errorism Strategy

Reporting on the government’s counter-extremism strategy:
learn england

Fight errorism!

Doctors: Capitalism ‘Conflicts With Health and Public Interest’

bmj logo

The BMJone of the world’s oldest and most respected general medical journals, have condemned capitalism for inducing behaviours that conflict with “ecological health“.

“There should also be agreement that the primary and legally bound duty of fossil fuel companies to maximise profit for shareholders induces behaviours that conflict with ecological health and the public interest.”

The punchy claim was made in a peer reviewed editorial backing the Guardian’s nutty campaign for charities to withdraw their investments from fossil fuel companies and coincided with an open letter signed by the BMJ’s editor-in-chief that also backed the campaign.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

Michael Crick on Safe Seats:

“In effect, new MPs are being elected day by day now, as, amid huge secrecy, small cabals of party bigwigs pick candidates for safe seats.”

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.

Facebook

Leader of Anti-UKIP Protest Embroiled in SWP Rape Scandal Leader of Anti-UKIP Protest Embroiled in SWP Rape Scandal
Hollobone Agrees Tory-UKIP Pact Hollobone Agrees Tory-UKIP Pact
David Mackintosh Quits David Mackintosh Quits
Happy Ed Balls Day Happy Ed Balls Day
Campaign Report: 42 Days To Go Campaign Report: 42 Days To Go
Zac Back? Watch Our Guy News Special Zac Back? Watch Our Guy News Special
Campaign Report: 43 Days To Go Campaign Report: 43 Days To Go
Gallery Guido’s PMQs Sketch Gallery Guido’s PMQs Sketch
Farron U-Turns and Sacks David Ward Farron U-Turns and Sacks David Ward
‘Spring’ Breaks: Jolyon’s Short-Lived New Party ‘Spring’ Breaks: Jolyon’s Short-Lived New Party
More Selection Shenanigans More Selection Shenanigans
Bouattia Ousted Bouattia Ousted
David Ward Becoming a Problem for Farron David Ward Becoming a Problem for Farron
Clive Lewis Slammed by ICM for Fake News Poll Clive Lewis Slammed by ICM for Fake News Poll
Radio 4 Gossips Link Peston to Today Radio 4 Gossips Link Peston to Today
Mirror Chicken Fattened for Election Slaughter Mirror Chicken Fattened for Election Slaughter
Len Tries to Stitch Up Liverpool Walton for His Bag Carrier Len Tries to Stitch Up Liverpool Walton for His Bag Carrier
Starmer on Corbyn: Then and Now Starmer on Corbyn: Then and Now
Updates: Who’s Standing? Who’s Standing Down? Updates: Who’s Standing? Who’s Standing Down?
Banks Bottles It Banks Bottles It