The Blogger Himself

On being libelled

I’ve now actually seen the legal letter. I’m accused of shaking down a stock market quoted company. If they pay me then I will write nice things about them on a stock tipping site. If they don’t I will write nasty things and also nice things about one of their competitors.

A complete and total fabrication. Also a damaging allegation. Not that there’s anything I can do about it apparently. US libel law is different from that of our own Dear Queen.

Still, at least it clears up that nagging question about the probity of the people running the company.


So something I wrote gets used as a reference. Cool:

Folk-economic beliefs: An evolutionary cognitive model
Published online by Cambridge University Press: 12 October 2017

My little book on economic fallacies gets used as a reference to people believing that international trade is a zero sum game, that it is exports that matter etc. A reference to how this is a belief but a wrong one.

Yes, I know, it’s entirely trivial. There’s still a kick to it though. Not as much of a kick as the book actually selling more than a few library copies but a kick all the same.

American libel law is so restrictive

I don’t know about this but I think I probably – as a published journalist – qualify as a public figure over there. In the one respect and the one respect only – that I would have to prove malice in a libel suit.

Which is a bit of a pity.

Because I’ve clearly just been libelled over there. Not publicly but enough.

Just one of those things I guess.

Anyone any idea what this means? | Access denied (403)
Current session has been terminated.
For further information, do not hesitate to contact us.

Ref: 2021-04-08T17:03:13.569Z

Trying to access this:


Weird but there we are

Over the weekend PayPal informed us that they would no longer be willing to process payments for us due to “inappropriate content”. What this actually means is “we dont believe in your political opinion” both yours, and my own.

With this is mind we will no longer be able to accept PayPal for donations or for the purchase of literature.

We’d fight it, but we’re small fry and its easier to move on, plenty of more payment processors in the world.

No, I don’t know why, not really, either.

If I were a Guardian columnist

That shooting in Boulder. I’ve been in that supermarket, that King Sooper. Which is enough for a column, right? How dreadful, could have been me, sympathy, empathy, bathos etc.

I’ve even written about having been in it. Somewhere, can’t find it right now. But I went from Moscow to Boulder and had jet lag, wandered around it at 4 in the morning. Even now – no, really – I can recall the wonder of the place. Acres of space devoted just to potato crisps. This was in, umm, 1991 I guess, when Soviet supermarkets were rather different.

So, there we have it, the perfect Guardian column. Free markets and capitalism might provide chips but they also lead to mass murder. No shoot ups in ration shops after all, are there? We have made the wrong choice as a society etc QED, bring back Beria.

Of course, I’d have to be careful. Wouldn’t want to go overboard and insist that Dachau reminds me of where I’d be under fascism…..

Quora questions I’ll not try to answer

Why is it that Nigeria is so successful in creating inflation (see link) but the supposedly smarter economists at federal reserve, with all their Harvard Phds, cannot achieve in spite of printing a shitton of money? Are black economists are smarter?

That could be just good trolling of course but still…..


For some of the tens of millions of fans of the hit period drama Bridgerton, admiring the Doric columns and Regency architecture is not enough — they want to own a piece of it as well.

The popularity of Netflix’s Regency show, which has been watched by more than 82 million households worldwide, is inspiring wealthy international buyers to snap up period properties in the UK, according to estate agents.

Set in England in 1813, the drama is based on historical romance novels by the American author Julia Quinn. While Bridgerton is set almost entirely in 1800s London, some of England’s finest houses, palaces and castles were used as filming locations for the series.

Much was shot in Bath, including the Holburne Museum, featured as Lady Danbury’s estate, and the exteriors of No 1 Royal Crescent, a museum in Bath, which was used to bring the Featheringtons’ home to life.

For one Australian couple, £665,000 was a small price to pay for a piece of Bridgerton. They bought a property on the Royal Crescent through Sotheby’s after a virtual viewing. “They exchanged in late December — all our communications at that point referenced Bridgerton and the family members now call the wife ‘the duchess’,” said Christine Penny, of Sotheby’s Bath office.

My own flat in Bath is also featured – well, feature is possibly a little too grand a word – in Bridgerton. Anyone who wants to buy that bit of history is welcome to make an offer – say, £664,995.95?

5 pence off because Alfred Street isn’t quite, not wholly and exactly, the same as the Royal Crescent.

Had to happen really

Portugal recorded its worst daily coronavirus death toll on Sunday, with more than 85,000 infections and almost 1,500 deaths reported in the past week.

That is the highest rate worldwide in proportion to its population of more than 10 million, according to an AFP tally based on government figures.

So, here I am, sitting here, in the worst affected country in the middle of a pandemic respiratory virus.

I get a cold.

Yes, a damn cold. It’s not a ‘flu, not a covid, a cold. Given that I’ve not been anywhere nor met anyone quite how is a mystery. But there we are…..

Share tips

So, got this one entirely wrong then:

Ladbrokes owner Entain has rejected a takeover offer from US casino giant MGM Resorts worth around £8.1bn, saying the proposal “significantly undervalues” the FTSE 100 gambler and its prospects.

Shares soared by more than a quarter to £14.29 in early trading, valuing the gambling behemoth at £8.4bn.

I did tip it, back on the 18th of Dec.

GVC Is Now Named Entain, And Is An Undervalued Buy

The thing is, I got the reason wrong. So, it doesn’t count, does it?

My view
I’m bullish on the whole American betting market. It’s never been difficult to bet even if it has often been ever so slightly not entirely legal. The new legality I expect to lead to a booming market.

I rate the British bookies as likely candidates to do very well in it. Yes, certainly, it’s a different market and different culture but running a book is also running a book.

Finally, Entain looks undervalued compared to its peers. I’m a bull.

The investor view
I believe it’s worth picking up some Entain to hold for the medium term haul. I expect the undervaluation against peers to narrow and there’s always that chance of a full US listing to unlock further value.

This is more than a speculation yet less than a significant core holding.

Events that you don’t predict don’t make your prediction right.

To American readers


Maybe someone can aid here.

I might have mentioned this before but the last solution didn’t seem to work.

The Robin Hood stock trading site. It used to have an API that allowed places like RobinTrack to tell us all what were the stocks the folks at Robin Hood were interested in. Sorta a leaderboard. Not of gains and losses, but volumes of trade through the platform. That API is been cut off. But, I think at least, the leaderboard still exists within the site.

I can’t gain access to the site from Europe. Even if I could I’d also need a US bank account to show them to prove that I really was in the US, not just on a VPN.

So, to see that leaderboard, on a regular basis, it needs to be someone in the US who a) has an account and b) will, two or three times a week perhaps, send me a screen shot or the like of that leaderboard.

Umm, anyone?


So, the local supermarket started selling the 1/2lb jars of Marmite. Which I have been indulging in, one every couple of weeks. Likes my Marmite on toast I does.

This might not have been the wisest move ever for someone who can, sometimes, get gout.

We’ll see if my having looked it up and found out about this makes any difference. Because it would be nice to stop limping…..

There’s a regular spam around at the moment

Bloke wants to sell me some system of chatting to potential customers over the web. Sorta a VOIP or webchat thingie to go on the blog.

As he says, it’s vital to convert leads as fast as you can.

Thing is, he’s advertising the service by commenting on the blog. You know, a lead conversion system that gains leads by spamming?

Tough editing

As you know I do an econ stats, occasional stock tip, thing for an American site. Last November I tipped Ocado. Moving from grocer to grocery tech supplier, gold rush the money’s in shovels, rerating possible. Currently showing a 148% profit that tip. So, I partly preen, a normal sorta thing in such columns, and suggest taking profits as I’ve no new information about what happens next.

The piece is rejected for being “superficial”.

That’s tough editing.

That’s a job I would take

Not that I’ve applied for it of course, nor has anyone been stupid enough to approach me:

From the coronavirus strategy to the merits of Rule, Britannia!, the prime minister’s new spokesperson will have to deal with the full range of issues confronting the government.

As the selection process for the first incumbent reaches its closing stages, though, the successful candidate is likely to face a harder question still: why on earth would you want to do it?

With the closing date for applications passed and the Downing Street machine back to full gear with Boris Johnson’s director of communications, Lee Cain, returning to the office, it was reported on Sunday that the process of sifting through the CVs will now intensify.

And although the job answering the questions of the press on camera will command a salary of £100,000 a year and a place on every news broadcast, the clearest signals yet are about those who view the opportunity with caution.

No one in their right minds would give me the job either. But I would love to be the first prime ministerial spokesman to tell a journalist, live on air, “Fuck off, twat”. It’s not whether that would happen but how quickly….

How sweet, they’ve named a street after me

Newtown, PA 18940

It must be me, right? Given how rare Worstall is as a name.

This not actually being so, it’s v rare in the UK – three of us now I believe. But over in the US there are hundreds. Mostly in PA and over into OH. Leading to me once getting an email from a kid in OH somewhere asking if I was the Dr. Worstall he’d taken Driver’s Ed from…..

The price of celebrity

So, little videos made saying “Happy Birthday” and the like by famous people.

Caitlyn Jenner
Patriarch-turned-matriarch of the Kardashians
£2,075 a video

Lee MacDonald
Zammo McGuire in BBC TV’s Grange Hill

Presumably “famous in the comments section of his own blog” would mean me paying them….