The bolder the lie, the bigger the laugh

Mike Murphy and Peggy Noonan tell us in a candid moment that the U.S. presidential race is over. In their view, because of Palin.

Video and transcript here.

But in her most recent column, Noonan says pretty much the exact opposite.

Enjoy the laughs.

PS – Alaska is close to Russia! Alaska is close to Russia!

Posted in George W. Bush, Video | 2 Comments

The Daily Mail: let’s kick arse and take names

[UPDATE (06 Sep) – Exciting NEW link! –> The Daily Mail (actually, genuinely) responds at last! <-- Will have no impact on this post, as its work is done and plans are afoot. Mwahahahahaha!]

[You know this is going to be a fun post, because it comes in two exciting parts. Please stand by to share with family and friends and any bloggers you might now… there’s plenty of names to be taken and arses to be kicked.]

Part One

It is now a week since I first went on the record and declared that Julie Moult is an idiot.

The article that started all of this is riddled with errors and fallacies, but the two that most people find easiest to grasp are as follows:

1. What Moult describes is not a Google bomb, and Google themselves have pointed this out.

2. Google bombing did not start “in the early 90s” (i.e. 5-6 years before Google existed).

Got that part?


I now invite you to take a closer look at the article… just to see if you can see what I can see:

Daily Mail grab #1

Have you spotted it yet?


Maybe you’d care to look closer:

Daily Mail grab #2

Yes, for starters, it’s apparent that the article has not been updated since 11:25 PM on 22nd August 2008, despite the presence of two glaring errors.

Many bloggers and other web users are aware of those glaring errors. In fact, literally tens of thousands of web users have taken an interest in my article, those errors and the author behind them (including people at 36 different workstations at Associated Newspapers, according to my stats).

As I mention here, I initially sought to bring one of those errors to their attention via comments (the good people at the Daily Mail make a big deal about their allowing comments under every article, yes they do).

I submitted this; “What you describe here is not a Googlebomb, but what Google regards to be relevant image result. Google themselves told you that, but you didn’t listen.”

And…. ah, I see that almost everybody out there can now see what I see… but just in case there is any lingering doubt, let’s zoom in even closer:

Daily Mail grab #3

Yep, that’s right.

No comments. Not one.

Let’s take a look at that again, just in case we missed one:

Daily Mail grab #3

Nope. Not a sausage.

After thousands and thousands of visitors that have dropped by knowing that there is something wrong with this article, not one comment has been published about it and not one change has been made.

And if that’s not bad enough, The Daily Mail then go on to lie about it:

Daily Mail grab #4

“No comments have so far been submitted”…?

What a pack of lying bastards.

Rather than admit that they made a mistake, the Daily Mail have instead followed the example set by Iain Dale; they have let outright falsehoods stand, resisted any attempt to address the matter via comments, and also given the false impression that the article has been subject to reader scrutiny all this time.

And it looks like they’ve been at it for years.

MINI-UPDATE – As I write this, I discover that Stewart Kirkpatrick submitted a comment, too. I’m sure there are plenty of others who have shared a similar experience involving this article alone. This self-serving censorship happens all the time at the Daily mail website and every savvy web user knows it.

Part Two

I waffled on a bit in that first part. I’ll try to be more direct and to the point in this next part. How’s this for starters?

Would like a word

This Googlebomb nonsense is the mere tip of the iceberg. I’ve seen far worse, and odds are that you have too.

I’ve had a gutful of the Daily Mail making their readers worry about stuff just isn’t real. I think they’re well overdue for some serious scrutiny and I find myself in a unique position to do something about that… with your help.

Bigdaddymerk runs Daily Mail Watch, which is currently one of the top search results for ‘daily mail’ and only a quick refit away from being a serious contender for top search results relating not only to that tabloid’s name, but also key articles, issues and columnists. I’ve been in touch, and he’s keen to play ball.

– I’ve just brought a dozen or so editors together for The Sun: Tabloid Lies. It’s early days, but I think I’m onto something with the specialty-based work-sharing and the tactic of documenting clear and obvious cases of this tabloid deceiving the reader.

The rest writes itself.

If you are the author of an established weblog, and you would consider committing maybe an hour or two a week to documenting the lies and falsehoods of the Daily Mail (focusing on a subject, speciality or columnist of your choosing), then I’d like you to get in touch using the following email address:

bloggerheads DOT com AT googlemail DOT com

[Note – Make sure to include the URL of your weblog (and/or links to any past articles you have written about the Mail), plus any task preferences you may have and/or any special skills you can bring to the table. I’d also like to hear from anyone who thinks they can help with the practical side of the build and/or anyone who would be more interested in targeting The Sun… or maybe even The Express, a tabloid that’s full of righteous anger and owned by a pornographer.]

Then, shortly, we’ll all sit down with Bigdaddymerk and have a private chat about tasks, missions, and tactics.

Ideally, the broad aim of the new Mail project will be to waste less time barking at the liars, by instead reaching out to the readers who are subjected to their lies on a daily basis.

Those readers will probably never change their politics or stop worrying about young people causing cancer and affecting house prices, but they may calm down a bit and they might even stop buying the Mail every day if they realise that a lot of the stuff in it has been invented, misrepresented, or blown out of all proportion.

So what do you say, internets?

I say those bastards at the Mail are due a jolly good kicking.

I say the time has come for us to form an ugly mob orderly squad and pile on blindly cut into their circulation with surgical precision.

Shouty Lewis Prothero in V for Vendetta

UPDATE – Heh. Don’t be afraid to throw your hat in, but I’d best point out before it’s too late that competition for the Richard Littlejohn gig is already fierce.


Posted in Old Media | 2 Comments

Sarah Palin; pregnancy rumours and reality

Just so you know, according to Kuro5hin, the unpleasant rumours about Palin’s family started life as a troll on SomethingAwful.

Posted in Teh Interwebs, US Presidential Election 2008 | Comments Off

OK, so what are my options?

Iain Dale has ignored my specific request not to be involved in his inherently biased weblog poll, and has just deleted this comment of mine from under this post on his ‘weblog’:

I don’t believe you, Dale.

I blogged about this, and I even emailed you about it weeks ago.

I did not want to be part of this charade, and I said so very clearly and quite specifically.

I regard it to be damaging to my reputation to have anyone in this field think that I would endorse your poll or participate in your poll in any way. That includes allowing myself to be included in it and ranked by it…. even if you do pass it off as a bit of fun when it suits you.

We even went over this A YEAR AGO when you got in touch and were forced to drop me from your Who’s Who for this same reason.

And yet you’ve gone ahead and done it anyway.


Have you seriously gone to print including my name and weblog in your charts when I have refused to take part in the past and have clearly expressed my wish to NOT take part this year?

I seriously do not want to appear in his book of charts, and I told him so. Apparently, it’s already gone to print and today I find out that – despite my wishes – Iain has me listed as a participant in the poll.

What are my options?

UPDATE (03 Sep) – May I begin by pointing out that Iain Dale is a big, fat liar?

“Yes, you emailed me privately. And I do what I always do with all of the hundreds of other emails which you hassle me with. I put it straight in the Junk box. And then I did the same with the next one. And the next.” – Iain Dale (Aug 29)

I keep all the emails I get from Ireland. You never know when they might come in useful. I can find no email from him saying he didn’t wish to be included in the poll. Normally when he goes off on one he barrages me with copies of various emails has sent. Some of his emails go straight into my Spam folder anway, so it’s perfectly possible that this one did.” – Iain Dale (Sep 02)

(Note – He wasn’t talking about the ‘poll’ email specifically on Aug 29, but one of the hundreds dozens I’ve sent him earlier this year. These number in the dozens only because Iain keeps ignoring them or pretending not to have seen them. It is also possible that Iain will inisist that there is no lie or contradiction here because he used the word ‘junk’ and not ‘delete’.)

Not that his not seeing the email matters, as Iain himself described my actions as a ‘boycott’, and unless he’s going to claim that he doesn’t know what the word means, my post alone should have been enough for him.

But it’s nice of him to acknowledge – in his own special way – that he would have acted differently had he seen my email.

Then again…

“But either way, I don’t really care if he wished to be included in the poll or not.” – Iain Dale (02 Sep)

Ah. My bad. So what Iain is saying here is that – even if he had known for sure that I didn’t want to be involved in or associated with this poll in any way – he would have included me anyway.

The following point has already been raised (and ignored), but it’s similar to the point I raised with Total Politics yesterday (gosh, I hope they get my email) and it applies now more than ever:

Instead of honouring this request, Iain Dale went ahead and included me anyway, the upshot being that the poll is now – through no fault of mine, because I DID NOT WISH TO BE INCLUDED – actually specifically biased against my weblog because I was included in the poll (against my wishes) as I urged my readers not to vote.

Dale knows this. He’s not a complete idiot, and he must know how voting works because he lost an election once.

UPDATE (04 Sep) – Well, there you have it. I sent several emails seeking a reasonable and peaceful solution to this yesterday, and Iain ignored them all.

Iain Dale, who goes on and on and on about how he gets picked on for no reason, has decided to go ahead and be difficult about it by including me in this chart and peppering this post, which includes the following highlights:

“Liberal Conspiracy encouraged a boycott of the whole exercise…”

No. They didn’t. Sunny Hundal did. Iain knows this and was reminded of it several times. But it’s in his interest to make something more of it than there is, so he just lies about it. Speaking of which…

“Absolute Unique Visitors (is now) the yardstick by which blogs are judged…”

Pfft! As if Iain doesn’t recall why this is the case for him especially. And he’s lecturing newspapers for their misleading use of meaningless use of metrics?

Well, he’s clearly taking the piss.

Remember this any time Iain tries to get anyone to take this poll of his seriously (trust me, he will) or asks you to trust him with any position of power; he diddled this result just to have one over on me.

He’s a vagina.

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | 16 Comments

Memo to flying monkeys (all sqaudrons)

Closing this thread was not, in my view, an evil conspiratorial act of net censorship.

I wish to make that ab-so-lute-ly clear.

Cheers all.

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | 4 Comments

“Crazy Ivan! Crazy Ivan!”

(Hey, I did warn you…)

I’ve put out an initial post on the subject of Page 3 today, but apart from that and some action over further image-nickery (later) the Sun-watch project will be chugging along happily without my help for the next week and a bit… because right now I’m in the mood to give The Daily Mail a long-overdue kicking where it hurts.

All those in favour?

(Wait for it, wait for it…..)

[Psst! If you’re a blogger and you’d like a head-start on the action, start browsing through any past articles you’ve written about the Mail now.]

Posted in Old Media, Updates | 1 Comment

Google is *such* a tease

Spotted by Haku, a chap whose recently-installed user signature (*** Julie Moult is an idiot ***) contributed to this result:

The first sign of change in Google Images [screen capture].

It’s only text so far, but it’s a start and an Images database update has come about a lot earlier than expected.

For those who came in late.

UPDATE (01 Sep) – Google Images is still sniffing around, *plus* Daniel’s blog and Bloggerheads, which appears on the bottom row this evening [screen capture].

(Well done, Daniel, who appeared as the first weblog result to get a text mention in Google Images this morning. About 6 hours ahead of me. The bastard.)

Posted in Old Media | Comments Off

This just in: hating the lies of hate-filled liars makes you a hater!


Thank you, Charlotte, for your concern.


Facebook group: “The Daily Mail really are a bunch of fucking twats” (via)
No. of members: 8,213

Facebook group: “I Love the Daily Mail”
No. of members: 20

Not sure what that means exactly, but moving on…


A fresh item about the only other national newspaper stupid enough to hire Julie Moult:

The Sun: Tabloid Lies – Setting up “investigations” with only one possible outcome: Occasionally, the Sun likes to take a break from attacking the “work shy” and on benefits just in print and decides to set-up a fallacious test to prove just what a bunch of layabouts those on benefits are… This time the paper has been completely caught out by its own readers, which happily saves me the bother…

A very promising entry that you should read and take some time to think about if you’re a regular here. I think now more than ever that we stand a very good chance of reaching at least a small percentage of Sun readers with this new project.

Posted in Old Media | 2 Comments

“Our legal advice is that Paul Staines is not a sex offender.”

I just popped into Google on my way to scan Paul Staines’ Wikipedia entry (it’s often educational* to watch who is changing, vandalising or fixing it, just in case you’re wondering) but made a bit of a typo.

This was the result:


(A little link for those who came in late.)

[*Psst! Here’s a freebie for you, Paul: one of your most persistent trolls, who appears to have been sock-puppeting on your site and many others, has left fingerprints all over the Wikipedia history for your entry. All you have to do is cross-check a few comment-specific IP addresses. Not that your kiddy-blogging platform will let you do this, but maybe you know someone who uses better technology who has also been trolled by this person. Oh, and I’d go after this twit myself, but I need to settle the Sunlight COPs matter before I do. Latest update on that is here, just in case you missed it. While I have your attention, can you please have a word with these recipients of your hard-earned money and ask when they might get around to processing my membership application? I want to crack on with promoting transparency in politics. Ta.]

Posted in The Political Weblog Movement | Comments Off

David Singleton’s circle of invention


Another ‘journalist’ gives his brain a holiday…

On the matter of Tom Watson Vs. David Singleton, I have the following to say:

Just for starters, it’s not a case of Tom being upset that he didn’t have “input in to this diagram”, as if a sea of reliable data accidentally spat out a result that Tom didn’t like… and I sincerely doubt that Tom is miffed that he missed his chance to take part in the creative process.

It is instead a case of David Singleton airing a rumour and presenting it as a fact in the same breath.

Take a look at the diagram produced by Singleton (reproduced here by Sam Coates).

Tom Watson is clearly illustrated as being part of “a formidable network of political strategists and communications professionals working behind the scenes to smooth (David Miliband’s) path to power”, while his call-out box merely states that Tom is “now said to have switched allegiance from Brown to Miliband”.

At a stretch, Singleton might be able to get away with a bit of hearsay (around here he is said to have switched allegiance to the Camden goat-blowing set), but only if the illustration places Tom in a separate ‘maybe’ or ‘unknown’ position outside the network. And it doesn’t. A picture can tell a thousand lies, and all that.

Here, take an even closer look at the diagram. Can you spot any unbroken lines between Tom Watson and David Miliband?

And to those who may *still* be uncertain about what the problem is, I offer this alternative diagram:

David Singleton does not blow goats in Camden or anywhere else as far as I know

David Singleton – who claims to be a journalist and news editor and is therefore subject to the same rules guidelines most journalists and news editors claim to follow – did this thing without consulting Tom Watson. At all.

And yet if you read the article that introduces the ‘circle’ nonsense, you will see that he found the time to extend that courtesy to others *and* note publicly where he tried and failed to make contact (highlights are mine)…

[Psst! Here’s a quick note for people who may not be aware of one very good reason why doing the latter is often important.]

PR Week – Miliband eyes up comms chief for leadership drive

When approached by PRWeek, Collins refused to be drawn on how often he talked to Miliband, saying only: ‘I speak to a lot of people.’ Collins also declined to say whether he would accept a job as Miliband’s communications advisor.

Kestenbaum is a former chief of staff to private equity pioneer and Labour donor Ronald Cohen, and is also close to former Labour Party chief fundraiser Lord Levy.

Miliband is said to have approached Kestenbaum this summer, asking him to forge links with business in return for a key role in his entourage. A source close to Kestenbaum said: ‘He sees himself as Miliband’s chief of staff – a Jonathan Powell-type figure.’

Kestenbaum was on holiday and unavailable for comment as PRWeek went to press.

Donnelly is an MEP-turned-lobbyist who is well connected in Labour’s ‘North East mafia’. Labour sources said Donnelly had spoken to Milband about helping to run his leadership campaign in a private capacity. One said: ‘Alan Donnelly is the campaign manager.’

Donnelly was unavailable for comment but issued a statement saying: ‘I am the chair of the South Shields Labour party – nothing more and I don’t believe there is a leadership campaign. The speculation is nothing more than summer mischief.’

And yet none of the above courtesies were extended to Tom when – and I hear this kind of thing is taken quite seriously by most politicians – it was being claimed that his political allegiances had changed dramatically.

I am informed by Tom that this claim resulted in a disruptive and needless barrage of phone calls from lobby journalists wanting to know what the score was.

I think David Singleton needs to start with an apology involving far more honesty and sincerity than his first effort.

Perhaps he would even care to explain why he appears to have sought a response from some MPs and not others.

Posted in Old Media | Comments Off