Being Screwed in ‘C’ Wing (Read All About It)


It’s probably worth reminding ourselves that the reason there are eight News of The World employees facing charges over phone hacking is that they were shopped, grassed-up or exposed by other journalists. Proper journalists. Not coppers (bent or otherwise) nor Politicians (ditto), or members of the general public, but journalists. This bunch of whistle-blowers happen to have come from The Gaurdian, but they could have come from any number of sources. Because, just as everyone at The Screws wasn’t a crook, then not every newspaper journalist is on the take (whatever the BBC may have you thinking). Not every Grauniad hack will be as white as the driven snow, and there may have been other reasons for exposing the Wapping scandal other than good, honest investigative journalism, but let us not forget that the industry shopped itself, Westminster please note.

You can extend this thought to the fact that it wasn’t only Wapping hacks that were up to no good – just that they are the first to get pinched for it. The reader might like to note that this week PC Plod revealed that two Prison officers had received payments totalling over £50,000 from The Daily Mirror and Daily Star. As mentioned here before, the shredding machines all over Fleet St have been doing overtime whilst the Inspector’s time is taken up with Murdoch titles. Only time will tell if, by the time Sue Akers and her Mukkers get to “M for Mail” or “P for People” in Glenn Mulcaire‘s address book, the evidence has somehow vanished (like an old oak table).

The conversations may well get interesting as the assorted journos in HMP-issue uniforms are locked up for the night by the very people they were throwing cash at for info about their celebrity/muslim/titillating inmates. Retribution may ensue. The News of the Screws has never been a more appropriate nickname for their paper, in so many ways.

I can’t help thinking public would never have given a toss if the enquiry had merely  revealed that the papers had been listening into the phone messages of Elton John or George Michael, going through Hugh Grant’s bins or Jordan’s drawers. That is, after all, why the average knuckle-dragger buys The Sun and The N.O.W- for the gossip stuff that they always seem to get. Fuck actors and sportsmen and singers and the like. They’re not real people. They forfeited their right to privacy the minute they…er…became good at their job (something, thankfully of which I have never been accused).

But to hack into the phone of a little blonde girl who is a possible murder victim ???? Disgusting ! It is a mark of the country’s appetite, class and taste that had the victim not been a little girl, then not only would this intrusion not have registered with the moral code of Joe Public, but the original story would never have made the front pages of the tabloids in the first place. But sadly for Milly Dowler, and latterly Andy Coulson this was not the case. The girl was just the sort of target which his papers and readers salivate about, and the whole sorry saga was somewhat inevitable.

I’ve never bought into the Kelvin McKenzie argument that “papers only print this stuff because that’s what the readers want” but I’m prepared to make an exception in this case. It’d be nice to think that the avid Screws reader realises his own part in this sorry and sordid affair. Nice to think he would, but unlikely to be true, as The Sun on Sunday‘s figures still show. More tits, more bums, more shite, more readers.
Thank god Madeleine McCann wasn’t a 6 ft tall hod carrier from Bridgend – you’d have never heard of the case. News International likes promoting these cases on its covers, and  Maddie’s plight has been thoroughly reported over the years, none more so than by The Screws. The family felt this would do their cause some good, giving them some hope and support to find their little girl. Right up until the paper published mum’s personal diaries for the Editors and the average Wayne and Waynetta to dribble over.

So do I feel and pity for these eight (on the understanding, of course, that they are all completely innocent until proven guilty) and the torrid time the police and prosecution will put them through ? No, not much. Maybe sorry that they’ve been singled out, when there are many, many others around that need their collars felt. But the overwhelming feeling is of relief that the industry ratted-out itself and showed others how it should be done. Just don’t talk to me about a self-regulating Press Complaints Commission. It clearly doesn’t work.

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Total Recall


For those who missed it, we bring you exclusive and unadulterated transcript from David Cameron‘s appearance at the Leveson Inquiry today:

Mr Robert Jay QC (the Inquiry’s lead counsel). “Good morning, Mr Cameron, we thank you for taking the time to appear here this morning, and for submitting your evidence beforehand. It must have taken you some considerable time to put together”

Mr Cameron (Prime Minister of Great Britain & NI and [referendum pending] The Falkland Islands) “I’m sorry I don’t recall how long it took me”

RJ: “No matter, Mr Cameron, it is not important, but thank you anyway.”

DC: “Can I just point out that I have also been thanked by the editors of the Telegraph, Mail, Mirror and the Independent, not just the Sun and News of the World”

RJ: “And now me…”

DC: “Yes, I just wanted to make that point”

RJ: “But not the Guardian”

DC:”I don’t recall the exact details, but no. They never thanked me. Bolshie bastards.”

RJ:. “…… Quite.  Now before we start, Mr Cameron would you like a glass of water ?”

DC: “I can’t recall. I do know, that if I did ever want a glass of water Rebekah Brooks would always offer me a glass of water, as she would any thirsty person. There’s nothing sinister in that

RJ: “Did she ever off you a glass of water ?”

DC: “I don’t recall. But I do recall perfectly her telling me that she had once offered Gordon Brown a glass of water. And Tony Blair. And Lloyd George. ”

RJ: “……………………….!!”

RJ: “Do you remember on the 18th of the 9th, at the Stupid Arse’s Club, Piccadilly, taking water, and indeed lunch with Mrs Brooks, Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch, Andy Colson, Joeseph Goebbels, Jeremy Hunt, General Pinochet, Matthew Freud and Frederick West where, over seven-and-a-half-hours you discussed the BBC licence fee, phone hacking, the planned assassination of Tony Blair, global domination, the BSkyB bid and pasty tax ? You dined on goat curry, ackee and jerk truffles, served by young black men and women dressed in Tongan Marines Outfits”

DC: “hmmmm…..  that’s all a bit vague, I’d have to check my notes in my diary…”

RJ: “ok, Mr Cam…”

DC: “…but I do clearly remember Gordon Brown saying that he had enjoyed many cosy suppers at the Ginger Jock’s Shellfish Bar on the Penge bypass, with John Prescott and all of the above mentioned people, except, of course, Jeremy Hunt. Who was away at that time. With me. Honest.”

RJ: “Now, Mr Cameron you are, are you not, friends and neighbours  with Mr and Mrs Brooks?”

DC: “I can’t recall”

RJ: “You don’t remember going round to their nearby house on several occasions for breakfast, dinner and supper ?”

DC: “No”

RJ:”No ? You’ve never gone round to their nearby house on several occasions for breakfast, dinner and supper ??”

DC: “No, I mean I don’t recall if I don’t remember if I ever went to their nearby house on several occasions for breakfast, dinner and supper ? There’s nothing sinister in that. I do know that Gordon Brown went round. I specifically remember that. And that Blair bloke. I remember saying to my wife at the time (her name escapes me) that that was very sinister. Very sinister indeed

RJ: “So just to sum up before the break, Mr Cameron, you don’t recall any of the 723 dinner engagements you took with the Brooks’ and the Murdochs? or the 19 occasions when Mr Hunt walked around the Cabinet Office handing out Sky Subscription vouchers and News of the World-emblazoned Flags of St George ? Or the 17 week holiday in 2010 which you and your wife, who’s name escapes you, spent on board Rupert Murdoch’s Yacht the Wendi Boat Comes In, moored off the Turks and Caicos Islands ? Even though in his evidence, Mr Hunt states that he acted as cabin boy for you and whassername for that vacation ? You do, however, remember catching a glimpse or Tony Blair and Gordon Brown in 1998 passing brown envelopes, full of cash, to Rupert Murdoch and his son, round the back of the drive-in MacDonald’s, Wapping Highway ?”

DC: “Correct. Especially the last bit.”

Lord Justice Leveson: ” I think it’s time for a short break now, Mr Jay.  Thank you Mr Cameron, we shall resume at 1 o’clock, if that is ok with you ?”

DC: “I can’t recall, sir.”

RJ: “Oh just fuck off”.

A British All-Conners Record


The Daily Telegraph writes:

Olympic beer to cost £7.23 a pint


Bars at the official Games venues will charge £4.80 for a small serving of London 2012 red wine. For visitors with an appetite for traditional British fare, a portion of cod and chips will set them back at least £8.

The London 2012 organisers, who published sample menus yesterday, claimed the prices were “more than comparable” to catering costs at other sporting events. An estimated 14 million meals will be served to spectators across 40 locations during the Games.

Paul Deighton, chief executive of London 2012, said the organisers had “gone to great lengths” to find “high quality, tasty food that celebrates the best of Britain”.

A 330ml bottle of Heineken lager at the Games will cost £4.20, making the equivalent price of a pint £7.23. This is more than double the national average price of £3.17 for a pint of beer.

Spectators will pay £2.10 for a toasted teacake, £2.30 for a 500ml bottle of Coca-Cola and £2 for a cup of tea. A family of four should be able to buy food and drinks for under £40, according to London 2012. “

They say this last bit without a hint of irony. That’ll be 40 quid on top of the four £450 tickets to watch 20 minutes of the 1m synchronized ping pong. But who the fuck cares any more? We let these robbers get away with it, as we string up our flags and bunting, wave our Union Jacks and remark “ooh hasn’t that nice Mr Coe got old since he took over the games ?”. Of course he looks old. So would you if you had to lug great wads of cash home every night, under the cover of darkness.

Let’s not worry about it. Let’s light up the barbies, sing God Save the Queen for the Jubilee and give thanks that in these harsh times of mass unemployment, crime and poverty, when more and more are driven to stealing to feed themselves and their families, when the southern half of continental Europe is about to go under, we still have a time and the tact to celebrate and wave at a woman who drives around in a solid gold coach.

Let’s shout “C’mon Ingerlund” as the Ukrainian and Polish Nazi Parties beat the shite out of football fans from ethnic backgrounds (well, anyone who isn’t Ukrainian or Polish really), and all this because Michel Platini and his Uefa mafia turn a blind eye to racism and violence within football culture, just as long as he gets his big bucks (or small Euros at the time of going to press). I do not have the data on the price of Heineken beer in Kiev.

Then when a football match breaks out on the pitch and our team loses we can slaughter Roy Hodgson for picking completely wrong 11 idiots, as there were 11 other idiots waiting at home in bed with their friend’s wives, trying to take their minds off of not being selected.

Lets sit back and enjoy the liars of the world: Blair, Cameron, Murdoch (+1), Hunt, Wade, Coulson and the rest of them squirm their way around the questions which would and should bring down the lot of them. But they won’t. You know they won’t. Come the end of Leveson, and save for a couple of minor-ish victims and sacrifices like Brooks and Coulson, the Murdoch Empire, the Fleet St rags and the British Government will still be in place and will still operate in exactly the same way.

Some people moan about it and sites like the one you are reading make a fuss about all this shit now and then, but it doesn’t really do anything or matter in any way shape or form, does it? If it mattered, more than 32% of the country would get out and vote these crooks, thieves and tramps out of office. If it mattered there would be a day of action against arseholes like Andrew Lansley, Michael Gove and Nick Clegg EVERY WEEK, not just once every winter equinox.

So enjoy the next few months. Don’t trip over the maypole or the bunting this weekend; when the football arrives, cheer and clap and the local police, the UEFA officials and the TV cameras ignore the Zeig Heil chants and the Nazi Salutes; smirk and laugh as one-by-one cabinet minister after cabinet minister lies his way out of court; stand and salute and sympathize with the judge trying to get to the bottom of this really sordid scandal, only to be left with the head of the odd PM spin doctor, or Eton old boy to show for it;

Wash that MacDonald’s Olympic burger down with your pint of Heineken. That’ll be well worth fifteen quid of anyone’s money. But not mine. I shall be spending the odd £2.60 on a pint in The Shovel then nip across the road to the chip shop, or maybe the kebab house where I can pick up a large meal for the price of a 330ml bottle of imported Olympic lager. Then I’ll nip home to see if there’s any cricket on to watch. There’s no telly in The Shovel, so it’ll be cans of Guinness on the sofa, in front of the box for me. So keep your over-priced games, your over-hyped jubilee, and your über-alles Championship.
I’ll keep my kebab and a pint. You have your Red-White-and-Blue season. I’ll be happy with my Doner Summer.