This is fun

For women of my generation and younger, the slut-shaming of Keeler,

The phrase used in its literal meaning.

Christine Keeler was indeed horizontally tangoed for money and was vilified for it.

Obviously an editing mistake at The Guardian because who expects clarity of language there?


The email accuses News Corp papers, including the Australian, the Daily Telegraph and the Herald Sun, of misrepresenting facts and spreading misinformation to focus on arson as the cause of the bushfires, rather than climate change.

The email was sent by Emily Townsend, a commercial finance manager at News Corp,

Commercial finance managers are experts at climate change, are they? Know what the editorial line should be better than the editorial staff?

The Chinese economy is about to crash

By 2010, China was beginning to have an impact on the global consciousness in a new way. Prior to the western financial crisis, it had been seen as the new but very junior kid on the block. The financial crash changed all that. Before 2008 the conventional western wisdom had been that sooner or later China would suffer a big economic meltdown. It never did.

If Martin Jacques says that then the crash is going to happen in 3…2…1

Well honey, he did

While foxes are not a protected species, anyone viewing them as expendable vermin should be aware that this is one of the prime arguments used by foxhunters. Though urban foxes can be huge, they don’t tend to approach humans so there’s little reason to fear them. If Maugham was concerned for his chickens, couldn’t he have just removed them, letting the RSPCA humanely deal with the fox? Keeping chickens in your garden is arguably the kind of affectation that makes people hate the “metropolitan elite” but, if people wish to do so, they should at least make their enclosures fox-proof.

The fox tried to get at the chickens and the fox didn’t get at the chickens. That’s what fox proof means, no?

Amanduh speaks out

None of this should be a surprise, because Hallmark movies, as cloying and saccharine as they are, constitute the platonic ideal of fascist propaganda.

She seems to think that blonde heteros are fascist. Which would be rather a surprise to the Japanese fascists, Chinese, Italian, Spanish, Paraguayan and Portuguese versions of that political theory.

Really, someone ought to point out that the Aryan blond gods thing was Nazi, not fascist.

Hallmark movies, with their emphasis on returning home and the pleasures of the small, domestic life, also send a not-at-all subtle signal of disdain for cosmopolitanism and curiosity about the larger world, which is exactly the sort of attitude that helps breed the kind of defensive white nationalism that we see growing in strength in the Donald Trump era.

Umm, yeah.

Still, it’s critical to be mindful of the role that Hallmark movies are actually playing in our society. The very fact that they’re presented as harmless fluff makes it all the more insidious, the way they work to enforce very narrow, white, heteronormative, sexist, provincial ideas of what constitutes “normal.”

It’s easy to spot fascist propaganda when it’s goose-stepping Pepe-the-frog memes. It’s a lot harder to notice how it’s working when it’s tied up in Christmas cheer and suggesting grinchhood of anyone who questions the rigidity of its worldview.

Fascist doesn’t mean what Amanduh thinks it does. But then very little in this world does accord with Amanduh’s beliefs.

My word Polly

This was all done a few weeks back, was it?

Or almost done, as first and second readings are dashed through the Johnsonised Commons, disregarding the notion a bill should be published first to allow at least a week to scrutinise it before voting on the second reading. But to hell with rules, precedents, procedure. From now on, the will and whim of Boris Johnson is iron law.

All that faffing about with different bills and insistences on Brexit in the last Parliament? All published a week in advance?

But Johnson seems resolute against that path, a populist following the country’s choice of romance over economic well-being.

Isn’t that rather what he’s supposed to be doing?

Sir Keir and the spell checker

Sir Keir Starmer’s Wikipedia page was edited this week to remove a reference to his being a “millionaire”, ahead of an expected leadership launch.

The passage was excised from the online encyclopedia in the early hours of Tuesday morning from an internet address traced to Northwest London.

The shadow Brexit secretary’s team has denied any involvement.

However, it came as Sir Keir, a former high-flying human rights barrister and Director of Public Prosecutions, was forced to deny he is too well-healed to lead the party as it seeks to regain the trust of northern working class voters.

The Telegraph there being caught out by using a spell checker, not a subeditor. (Spotter, Dee in NZ) For we, of course, prefer our Labour leaders with gaping unhealed sores. Even if well heeled.

Polly on the BBC

Nothing new: the BBC is always in the firing line of the Tory right. The very nature of its being affronts free marketers. Together with the NHS, its fellow national treasure and source of global admiration,

As one of those free marketeers I don’t think it’s an affront. I just think they’re both pretty shit. And that international admiration, that’s in your head love.



No, Clint Eastwood, female journalists don’t trade sex for information
Ankita Rao

No female journalist has ever done so? That would be a bit odd wouldn’t it? Given what people in general will trade sex for.

That female journalists don’t routinely do so, sure. Even that the instances are very rare indeed. But never?


No one knows how many homeless people there are. Countries define homelessness differently; count only those sleeping rough and in shelters on one night night in a year; struggle to estimate those camping with friends or family and living in bad housing or places not meant to be homes.

But what’s clear is the number is increasing.

If we don’t know how many there were, don’t know how many there are, then how can we know the number is increasing?

Oh, yeah, sorry, forgot myself. Guardian and numbers, ’nuff said.

Lies work both ways George

The rewards for political lying are massive: they include winning referendums and elections. The penalties are either nonexistent or tiny.

This being one of the few times when tu quoque is logically valid. Have you actually read the newspaper you work for on the subject of American access to the NHS? Jezza’s claims? On claims of poverty when inequality is meant? On many a subject in fact.

Err, yes

Ministers must do more to tackle cheap credit offers


Yesterday’s Times reported that several high street stores are offering eye-watering interest rates with a holly sprig on top. JD Sports, Next, H&M, even good old M&S are now selling expensive and instant credit. “Get it today. More time to pay,” purrs Argos. Cut to the scene of the bailiff at the door and the children sobbing.

Is it cheap credit or expensive credit we’re supposed to be worrying about?