An accidentally naughty page break in this week’s New Statesman, as an interview with Ruth Davidson reads:
“On education, she wants to encourage innovation by giving head…”
“…teachers autonomy over budgets…” obviously…
Shock hackette Abi Wilkinson has got the attention-seeking bug. Fresh from calling for a 100% inheritance tax earlier this week, she has now written a really quite unpleasant piece for the New Statesman about John McCain, who was recently diagnosed with brain cancer. Headlined “This is no time for civility towards Republicans – even John McCain”, Abi writes:
“Increasingly, I’m coming round to the idea that incivility isn’t merely justifiable, but actively necessary… It’s unpleasant to wish that John McCain was dead—but is it illegitimate to note that, had he been unable to vote, legislation that will kill tens of thousands of others might have been blocked?”
Charming, and also doubly stupid. McCain last night torpedoed the Obamacare repeal bill.
She trolls on, quoting Engels and John McDonnell on “social murder”, comparing McCain and other Republican politicians to killers:
“In normal murder cases, few people would even begin to argue that killers deserve to be treated with respect. Most us would avoid lecturing victims’ on politeness and calm, rational debate, and would recognise any anger and hate they feel towards the perpetrator as legitimate emotion.”
This article is obviously complete drivel. It is designed to shock, to seek attention, to outrage, to get clicks. Abi is the left-wing equivalent of Raheem, Milo or Katie Hopkins, she doesn’t really have anything clever or interesting to say and probably doesn’t believe her own BS, but knows there’s a short-lived career in writing nasty, clickbait comment pieces. Sad…
— Jim Waterson (@jimwaterson) April 6, 2017
Staggers pol-ed George Eaton appears to be stuggling to keep a straight face. What happened to “we are his media”?
In a move straight out of the Chavista playbook Momentum supporters are organising a demo tonight to complain about the New Statesman’s anti-Corbyn coverage. The Facebook event says 80 people are planning to go. Guido understands that staff have been emailed and told to go home early…
Intimidating publications and journalists with demonstrations is a hallmark of Latin American leftists propping up failing regimes e.g. Venezuela. This type of Red Fascism will be the future of the Labour Party as the civil war kicks off properly…
New Statesman editor Jason Cowley has been boasting to anyone who’ll listen about how his magazine’s print circulation is at a four decade high. Last week Cowley crowed to the BBC’s Amol Rajan:
“In an era of fake news, people are realising that good journalism is worth spending money on. While much of the liberal media has been struggling to survive in a declining market dominated by powerful media groups, the New Statesman has not merely held its position but expanded dramatically”
Delve into the Statesman’s ABC certificate, however, and it becomes clear they are cooking the books…
Only 68.6% of the Statesman’s circulation is “actively purchased” – this is remarkably low and well below its competitors. Put another way, the Statesman gives away 31.4% of its copies for free. They might have their highest circulation for 40 years, but they are giving one in three copies away for no charge…
Compared to their rivals, the Statesman is significantly fiddling its figures. The Spectator gives away just 11.9% of its circulation for free – fewer than 1 in 8 copies. 15% of the Economist’s circulation is given away for free. The Week gives a quarter of its copies away for free. 0.1% of Private Eye’s circulation are freebies. The Statesman’s addiction to giveaways stands out – and helps them massively manipulate their headline circulation figure.
Cowley’s boast last week claimed “In an era of fake news, people are realising that good journalism is worth spending money on”. This itself is fake – a third of the Statesman’s print readers don’t spend any money – not counting that it is also free online, whereas rivals like The Economist and The Spectator have online paywalls. “In an era of fake news”, surely the Statesman should be more honest…
Guido has not awarded an Order of the OTT for a while. This entry however, up on the New Statesman website this morning, was just too good to pass up:
Readers can have one guess who the author is…
Laurie Penny’s steaming hot take goes on to suggest that an intoxicated David Cameron’s alleged porcine molestation is somehow symbolic of the class struggle power dynamic, her psycho-analysis concluding that the future Prime Minister’s penetrated pig is a metaphor for the country he would go on to run:
“Power and money are accessed through the back door, or, as it may be, the pig’s mouth, and as with any kink, the eroticism isn’t about the act, but about what the act symbolises. It’s about humiliation, about control, about power play. What might the young swain have been thinking as he unzipped? What went through his head? If you ask me, I’ll bet he was thinking: Soon. Someday soon, I will do this to the whole bloody country.”
Talk about hamming it up…
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.”
Labour have announced which news organisations have been invited to chair each of their regional leadership hustings, which are taking place in addition to the ones on TV and radio:
Anushka Asthana, Sky News
David Clegg, Daily Record
Matthew d’Ancona, The Guardian
Isabel Hardman, The Spectator
Gaby Hinsliff, Political Editor, Grazia
Chris Lloyd, Northern Echo
Mary Riddell, Daily Telegraph
Tim Shipman, The Sunday Times
Jim Waterson, Buzzfeed UK
Paul Waugh, HuffingtonPost UK
The Speccie and the Telegraph get one each, even Buzzfeed are on the list. Yet the New Statesman, Labour’s in house magazine, are nowhere to be seen. Was it something they said?
Labour's Jamie Reed has nominated Andy Burnham for the leadership – meaning every member of the shadow health team has done so.
— George Eaton (@georgeeaton) June 10, 2015
Great insight there from ‘Miliband’s favourite journalist’.
Liz Kendall remains a Shadow Health Minister while she runs against Burnham…
“His five years as opposition leader have revealed severe limitations and strategic weaknesses. He has never succeeded in inspiring the electorate and has struggled to define himself. His narrow rhetorical and ideological focus on political economy has left him unable to reach the aspirational voters required to build a broad electoral coalition (see Jason Cowley’s report on Harlow in this week’s issue). Finally, even after the SNP’s victory in the 2011 Scottish Parliament election, which we predicted, he remained complacent over Labour’s decline in Scotland, where he is even less popular than David Cameron. It is the surge in support for the SNP, which has positioned itself to the left of Labour, that has definitively ended Mr Miliband’s hopes of winning an absolute majority. Should he become prime minister, he will now almost certainly be reliant on the support of a large nationalist bloc to govern.”
This from the magazine that sacked Dan Hodges for being too anti-Ed…
For the second time in a week the New Statesman website has been hacked and is redirecting to a Turkish escort site.
They must have annoyed somebody…
The former First Minister sat down to be interviewed by the Staggers‘ Jason Cowley and ordered a bottle of pink champagne, which reminded Guido of this picture. Meanwhile, Salmond also appears to have shot down any hope the Tories had on relying on SNP numbers post May 7:
“The Tories would have to go straight effectively for a vote of confidence, usually the Queen’s Speech, although it could be otherwise, of course, and we’d be voting against. So if Labour joins us in that pledge, then that’s Cameron locked out.”
Salmond confirmed the SNP would instead do a deal with Labour:
“I think… probable would be vote-by-vote [support for Labour], and possible would be confidence and supply. This arrangement is . . . a narrow range of policies, and a narrow range of supported votes, obviously: that’s confidence and supply. And then in turn, of course, there has to be an agreed number of policies . . . not like the full coalition, where you take responsibility for every dot and comma, but a narrow range of policies, in return for which you make it possible for the government to function – over a period of time.”
Shouldn’t he run that by Nicola Sturgeon first…
To discuss PMQs on Sky News, a wide range of hacks were put on air. In the lefty corner we have the New Statesman’s Harry Lambert and on the centre left we have Stephen Bush from the, er, New Statesman.
YouGov have done some drilling down into the public’s expectations and perceptions for The Sun; the numbers are terrible for Ed Miliband. With six months to election day a mere 19% think he is up to the job of being Prime Minister. This compares with 28% saying that of Gordon Brown six months before the last election, before the former Prime Mentalist went on to deliver Labour’s worst poll result in generations. The Tory press have never liked Ed, what will dismay Team Miliband is that his few media allies have lost faith. The Guardian is persistently sceptical of Ed’s merits, Owen Jones is scathing, the only national newspaper to back Ed for leader – the Sunday People – is despairing, the once fervent New Statesman now damns him.
So many Labour MPs openly admit that Ed is just not up to it that CCHQ has gleefully set up a dedicated website to highlight Labour MPs’ complaints. At PMQs Ed’s weakness is broadcast weekly to the nation. So what does Ed do? He has had a mini-reshuffle of his campaign team and brings in his friends…
Here is Mehdi Hasan sparring with Douglas Murray on Question Time back in 2011, on the sensitive subject of forced marriages. Mehdi could not have been clearer where he stood on the issue:
“Four years later he [David Cameron] turns up in Munich of all places to tell us we need this muscular liberalism and to tell us, like Douglas, about forced marriages! Sorry, how many people have forced marriages in this country? And show me which cultural group defends forced marriages?”
Well those questions are answered, you might say, with passion, rigour and boldness by an article in this week’s New Statesman, written by one Mehdi Hasan.
“Child, or underage, marriage is very much a part of British society. And the inconvenient truth is that it is Muslims – not Christians, Jews or Hindus – who are responsible for much of it. There is no point pretending otherwise. Nor is it morally tenable to stand idly by as young girls in the UK are forced into marriages before they are physically or psychologically ready, against their will and against the law…
I can’t stay quiet. I’m the father of two young girls. When I hear of forced, underage marriages being carried out in the heart of major British cities, I think of my own daughters. And I feel sick.This is 2013. Not 613. Or 1813. Child marriage is a form of child abuse. It must be stopped.”
“There is no point pretending otherwise.”
A belter of a conference cartoon special from Peter Brookes on the front page of this week’s Speccie. Guido would like to put in a bid for the original.
By delicious coincidence, this week’s New Statesman also goes the Wallace and Gromit theme on its cover.
It’s almost as if Miliband was a dead ringer for Wallace.
Like two drunks staggering home propping each other up, loss-making magazines the New Statesman and New Republic have agreed a transatlantic tie-up. New Republic is owned by Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, worth an estimated $700 million, so he is only slightly richer than Staggers‘ owner Mike Danson, worth some £300 million. They are certainly appropriate bedfellows, New Republic is haemorrhaging $3 million a year or some $5 a copy, while the New Statesman loses a mere £1.35 a copy. They will each publish three of the other’s articles every week. Apparently it’s a new Special Relationship. Groan.
The New Statesman are having lots of fun spoofing this morning’s Sun front page, but they appear to have forgotten to do a mock up of their own cover. Guido decided to draw on the magazine’s chequered history and current editorial output to produce this:
Guido’s would probably look quite similar to the Sun’s.
Maybe without the red hand of Ulster…
“David Cameron hasn’t spoken about climate change for three years” screeches the headline of Luciana Berger’s particularly weak piece for the Staggers today. Just the one problem: she is talking complete rubbish. Obviously a quick Google of “David Cameron climate change” was beyond poor old Luciana, so Guido thought he would help her out.[…] Read the rest