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Friday 17 June 2011

Verity Murphy | 12:36 UK time, Friday, 17 June 2011

Paul Mason is still in Greece this morning and is out and about gauging response to Prime Minister George Papandreou's attempt to push through unpopular austerity measures demanded by the EU through the appointment of a new finance minister.

We will have his film tonight and also by the time we go to air Paul should be back with us and live on the programme with a report on how worried the rest of the eurozone and the UK should be by the crisis.

Also, with a photograph of a couple kissing amid the Vancouver riots, we ask what it takes to make an iconic image.


  • Comment number 1.

    'what it takes to make an iconic image'

    Sadly, these days, very slow media. Or very fast PR.

    The piece waffles away with 'what ifs', but on first glance she looks out cold.

    So getting to pitch first a romantic moment seems a stretch.

    Maybe Panorama could do a story on it?

  • Comment number 2.

    Greek gov't using agent provocateurs...

    Max Keiser: Mass Rioting In Greece As Economists Warn Of Global 'Armageddon Scenarios'


  • Comment number 3.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 4.

  • Comment number 5.

    Obscene wealth

    Bernie Ecclestone's 22 year old daughter Petra is said to have bought the most expensive house in America at £92m.

  • Comment number 6.

    The bankstas are trying to bleed Greece to death without actually pushing it into sovereign default.

    Meanwhile vultures like Steve Forbes of the International Chamber of Commerce is in a hotel in Athens deciding which Greek assets can be profited from the most.

  • Comment number 7.

    If the Greek government can't get a majority for austerity Mk II, then Greece is heading for default, however its dressed up. Once there is a default in EuroLand, the market will drive up the cost of borrowing to the indebted nations and mark the Euro down. This in turn will tighten the pressure on Eire, Portugal, Spain & Italy even further, so forcing them into a second round of bail outs - which IMHO will follow the path the Greeks have laid out.

    The UK would also find things getting tougher - our borrowing costs will rise, the competitive advantage for our exports into Europe will be eroded, whilst we will have to contribute to the bailouts as well. If we persist with GO's suicidal plan to copy the Irish government's spending cuts and drive the economy into a deep recession, then what we're seeing on the streets of Athens will be replayed in London in 6-9 months time, when our borrowing skyrockets as tax receipts fall and welfare bills rise.

    At this point the risk to the entire financial system will be enormous and I question the IMF's ability to prevent wholesale defaults and bank crashes - a meltdown scenario then looms. As many Greeks have found, falling back on self-sufficient agriculture is the only game left when there are no jobs, no adequate state welfare system and no prospect of economic growth for a generation.

  • Comment number 8.

    The news the BBC doesn’t want you to read...

    Fukushima: It's much worse than you think

    ‘In the US, physician Janette Sherman MD and epidemiologist Joseph Mangano published an essay shedding light on a 35 per cent spike in infant mortality in northwest cities that occurred after the Fukushima meltdown, and may well be the result of fallout from the stricken nuclear plant.
    The eight cities included in the report are San Jose, Berkeley, San Francisco, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Portland, Seattle, and Boise, and the time frame of the report included the ten weeks immediately following the disaster.’

  • Comment number 9.

    '5. At 14:41 17th Jun 2011, museV -
    Bernie Ecclestone's 22 year old daughter Petra is said to have bought the most expensive house in America at £92m.

    Private sector, eh? Heard a lady from a union explain where her pension pot gets retained. No mention of footballers or F1. Maybe 'cos its on the BBC? Professional courtesy.

    Now, if it was rag trade types... Panorama'll fix it!

    Be funny if Petra's vendors took the light bulbs with 'em.

  • Comment number 10.

    The irony of that, at this moment (nationally and beyond), is poetic.

    Post-Panorama, maybe a senior BBC spokesperson can come on to suggest that though this was wrong, there were some other things less so, and hence he's booked out on Newsnight for the season.

    On account of the value of all he has to share.

  • Comment number 11.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 12.

  • Comment number 13.

  • Comment number 14.

  • Comment number 15.

    NUDGE NUDGE (#14 link)

    My energy supplier EBICO has a lot to say about Carbon death on their website. I have advised them to desist. It would help if BBC could catch up - Susan is excused, after recent display of comprehesion.

  • Comment number 16.

  • Comment number 17.

    It would appear that everyone including disability charities have totally missed the main point about the remarks by the member for Shipley. which are in fact based on the truth. The truth is that nobody is going to offer a job to a person with any long term health problems when there are totally fit people in competition for said job. The fact is that to remove or refuse ESA from anybody with a proven track record of chronic illness ( or set any means test time limit to it ) is basically a freeze and starve to death sentence.

  • Comment number 18.


    And swamping Paul with music, as redolent of the oppression of the man in the street, was brilliant too.

    But Gavin should not try to play the bully, he hasn't got the eyebrows for it - leave that to Maestro Paxman.

  • Comment number 19.


    In all employments, the hirer tends to go for the most able at the lowest wage. This is almost a natural law.

    The minimum wage, by its very nature, skews the situation. Philanthropic employers are hard to find - but also, it seems, are non-opportunistic 'good' people.
    The MP showed considerable courage (foolhardiness?) and did not deserve Gavin's opportunistic posturing. Edgy though - well done NewsyNighty.

  • Comment number 20.

    It would appear that the current Welfare Reforms are a key part of the following policy direction.

  • Comment number 21.


    He is said to have lain down his life for his friends. This raises a cultural question - indeed, a Christian one. If the cultural pressure is for less-than-viable individuals to kill themselves, does this amount to homicide? Is it eugenics? Is it any different from what Nature does at every stage of life, from conception on?

    When the Ice Age arrives, might an Oates Culture be vital to survival of humanity?

    I suggest the truth of the matter is that WE The Ape Confused by Language, are now so immature as to be incapable of addressing such daunting issues.

    I'll get me coat.

  • Comment number 22.

  • Comment number 23.

    Virtually everything the Coalition is now doing is reducing aggregate demand in the UK - higher taxes, taking £112 Bn out of the economy completely, reducing public sector pension incomes, allowing wages falling way behind inflation, devaluing the pound & so driving up prices of essentials like energy and food, making deep cuts in welfare payments, reducing the spending power of graduates repaying huge loans, allowing banks to profiteer by charging skyhigh fees and interest rates on loans, the list goes on and on.

    Meanwhile the global economic outlook is deteriorating rapidly - EuroLand crisis, the US recovery going into reverse, oil price spike, food price spike - and GO STILL thinks the UK economy will grow?

    The cumulative effect of all these factors IMHO will drive the UK economy off the same cliff that Eire and Greece have gone over - but given the size of the UK economy and being outside EuroLand, we are very exposed if the economy does go down hill rapidly - the £5 loaf, the £10 litre of petrol, 5,000,000 unemployed, 30% cuts in pay - these are the sorts of figures we need to think about.

    I think they realise that this is going to happen, hence the sudden obsession with taking on the unions over pensions when the negotiations have a long way yet to run. Deluded Alexander's "come-out-and-fight" speech today was as close to a deliberate provocation as you can get. The Coalition knows it needs to have an enemy to fight and blame when things get really sticky to divert the public away from their failures, so that when the same radicalisation that is sweeping the streets of Athens arrives here if we face the same fate as the Greeks at the hands of the speculators and bankers, then the unions will be cast as the bogeymen yet again.

    Another loony conspiracy theory? Well, we now know that precisely this "Plan, Prepare & Provoke" strategy was used for the miners' strike, when they paid out the rope to Arthur Scargill knowing that he'd react and they could then demonise him. Oh, and with 20:20 hindsight, we also know now that Scargill was totally wrong about the Tories plans for the coal industry - he thought they'd deunionise it and sell it off, so there would be significant job loses - of course we now know that British Coal was run down until it ceased to exist - Scargill completely underestimated the government's determination to exterminate organised mine workers at any price.

    Today we've had a direct proposal to remove disabled peoples' right to the same minimum wage as everyone else, we've

  • Comment number 24.


    I always felt that Blair knew, in his megalomaniac, Manichean, Machiavellian bones, that HE NEEDED TO GET TOTAL CONTROL to save us all. Had he been able to ENGINEER an EVENT, thence to suspend normal government, and go on to an emergency footing, we could have been PURGED, PURIFIED AND CORRECTED to usher in a Golden Age. (Blair would, of course, have become immortal - they all do.)

    NOW it looks as if Fate is to deliver Destiny Dave a Britain SO STRESSED, that mayhem will break out (stoked more than a little?) allowing SPECIAL POWERS to be put in place. (What does a COBRA do on a bad day?) Dave might not have God quite so on-side as Tony, but BY JINGO his Victorian sense of RIGHT AND WRONG is unsurpassed. He is almost a true heir.

    Monarchy, military and Westminster, are all bound in convoluted quasi-feudal hierarchical obedience, and Dave's simplistic, juvenile, needy psyche RULES THEM ALL. There will be no problem with strikes, welfare or food prices, under the IRON (but fair) FIST OF DAVE.

    As I posted recently - the words of Long John Silver: "The dead will be the lucky ones."

  • Comment number 25.


    Remember when Labour wheeled out Clinton as an ENDORSEMENT of their credentials? (There is something deeply weird in the political psyche.)

    Now we have Dave crowing - YES CROWING - that St Tony is ON HIS SIDE! I thought Terry Pratchet (may he prevail) had stopped writing, but Dave clearly lives in Discworld.

    PMs like this are bad enough ONE AT A TIME - but now they are GANGING UP!

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.


    I counter your '"The dead will be the lucky ones."

    With the last words from kubrics masterpiece 'Full metal jacket''

    . I am so happy that I am alive, in one piece and short. I'm in a world of ####... yes. But I am alive. And I am not afraid.

  • Comment number 28.

    So it looks like Merkel has placed her career on the sacrificial alter of the Euro project and backed down over Greece. All the earlier talk of Merkel demanding that Greek bondholders should take some of the pain, in the form of haircuts, was simply just empty rhetoric. Who'd of thunk it, a politician spouting lies.

    As mentioned by Max Keiser and posted in #6 above, the bankstas and their political knaves are simply bleeding Greece dry without actually pushing it into default.

  • Comment number 29.


    I just heard the death of Bin laden referred to - in passing - as a KNOWN fact. It set me thinking.

    I recently laundered 3 ten pound notes and 1 twenty. They were in a brown leather wallet, and when dry, looked decidedly odd. Knowing how unfriendly one's 'friendly bank' is, these days, I downloaded a form from the internet to send them for replacement. It transpires WE DON'T USE THE OBAMA PROTOCOL in matters of proof.

    It might be interesting to ask the Bank of England if they accept bin Laden is dead. I had to provide documents of bona fides. Can Obama come up with a birth certificate that doesn't look as odd as my laundered notes?

    Incidentally, I have seen TWO David Camerons - is the one running the country an impostor? It could explain a lot. . .

  • Comment number 30.


    Guess what group of 'public servants' doesn't want the spotlight shone on their gold-plated pensions?

    'And so to a mere taster of their perks. Just 15 years' work could build up a pension of £24,000, a recent FT assessment noted, whereas private sector employees would have to amass £700,000 to generate the same income when they retire at 65.'

  • Comment number 31.


    UK Quietly Contributes £9 Billion to IMF Euro-Bailouts
    Equivalent to Adding 1½p to Basic Rate of Income Tax

    'Douglas Carswell has spotted a Statutory Instrument slipped in before parliament without prior debate, two pages of legislation which will cost the British taxpayer £9 billion, the equivalent of adding some 1½p to the basic rate of income tax. No debate, no big announcement, just another day of propping up the Eurozone on the backs of UK taxpayers.'

  • Comment number 32.


    What rubbish - I have been fighting Westminster for more than a year. The futility for me always lies in getting no response from the Palace of Honour and in being unable to interest the media in widespread CONSERVATIVE PARTY ELECTION LAW BREAKING - even when proof is supplied and a year's-worth of 'story'.

    Needless to report: NewsyNighty doesn't want to engage either. I am repeatedly reduced to:


  • Comment number 33.

  • Comment number 34.


    Might it be that political wars, requiring squaddies to kill AND befriend, at the same time, don't work?

    When those mercenary killers have wiped out enough father/husbands of big-dark-eyed kids and distraught, ruined mothers, the brighter squaddies (just the ones who are de-camping) must finally realise their error. These people are just like us. They can win hearts and minds too - apparently.

    Meanwhile, back at home, Dave is endorsed by Tony. Might Tony be paying back for when IDS, pathetically overawed, backed him in the Iraq adventure?

    What a quid pro Crow!

  • Comment number 35.

    Bilderberg 2011: The tipping point

    ‘I look at Ying and have to wonder if China's really such an oppressive place after all. It can't be! Not with people like lovely Fu Ying running it. I think we've been misinformed. Western lies. Fu is the real China.’

  • Comment number 36.


    Oh no - of course - he's 'dead'. Almost as politically convenient as 9/11. Do I detect a 'fingerprint'?

  • Comment number 37.

    i joined the Lib-Dims 3 weeks, haven't received the membership card/number yet. The landlord is quite untrustable regarding mail, unfortunately. Have to work out how to get in touch.

    a lot happening, it seems. Haven't caught up on the last 4 days of news/programs yet. Hope QT was good. Audience usually is. :)

  • Comment number 38.

  • Comment number 39.


    Look Trevor - see the opportunity?
    Trevor picks up the opportunity and plays with it.
    See Trevor play.
    Peter shows Trevor another game.
    See Peter play. See Trevor play.
    Peter and Trevor love games. Everything is a game.
    See the money.

  • Comment number 40.

    36. At 19:15 18th Jun 2011, barriesingleton wrote:

    Ah, but meanwhile, there is a comment from the number 2, now numero uno...

    'And, if luck were on his side, he would like to launch a spectacular attack somewhere in the West on the pattern of 9/11 or 7/7'.

    At least I hope it is a comment from him rather poorly relayed, as otherwise one could feel the reporting was a smidge poorly structured.

    I have found that planning terrorist mayhem and 'enjoying' 'success' to seldom be successfully described as a matter of luck, at least in civilised society.

  • Comment number 41.


    So now Dave wants to be hard on failed fathers.

    Westminster has presided over, and shaped, for many generations, the British culture in which fathering routinely fails, and which in recent times, has seen fit to dismantle mothering also. Yet Dave - presiding supremo of Westminster - takes no responsibility; none to himself (how will his kids turn out?) and none to Westminster, as it functioned under a succession of similarly delusional and accusatory Prime Ministers.

    Dave has proved himself a politician through and through - he practises the appropriate skills with an arrogance and contempt that speaks unequivocally of his failings, yet he sees fit to pronounce on the failing of other men. This is not wisdom and it is not honour.


  • Comment number 42.


    Japanese pensioners are volunteering to help in the Fukushima radiation zone. I wonder if the Christian contingent in Japan will explain their error?

    During the futile British debate into assisted death, a vicar, on Any Questions, made it clear that our 'life' belongs to God.

    Who's right? It would help if He were not permanently on voicemail . . .

  • Comment number 43.


    Having looked hard at video of Tower 2 'swallowing' a plane, I now realise it was a crude CGI overlay. Underneath the image was bin Laden in a bomb belt.

    That is why the plane showed ZERO deformation and why no extremities broke off – bin Laden was magic. But that aside, I am sure we can believe our eyes when watching the videos in your link Junkk.

  • Comment number 44.


    OK Dave, lets RAM some other messages home:

    Dedicated Dads should instil the following precepts:

    1) Do not use money, indirectly or directly, to buy people's support - whether it be buying 'approval' through advertising, or buying speeches to sound good, or photoshopping to display a more attractive face. In short: FALSEHOOD is dishonourable.

    2) Do not make a pretence of alliance - even friendship - with another person, and then vilify that person, on a whim, the moment it suits. This is BETRAYAL.

    3) If you grow to a position of power and wealth, do not pretend you are dependent on state-provided services, or make out that you have typical experience of such, when status is known to attracts fawning.

    4) If your dad is a politician, ignore all of the above, and leave home at the earliest possible opportunity.

  • Comment number 45.

    Public sector pensions:

    Imagine you had paid in to a private pension all your working life - - but you only earn £20k p.a., so you couldn't afford a big pension - in the region of £6-8k p.a.

    You get to your mid fifties, with only ten years to go, (i.e. too late to do anything about it) you're suddenly told that the terms & conditions of your pension are going to be retrospectively changed - you now need to work for two more years before you can retire, the contributions you must make are going up by 50% and the pay out will be 10-20% lower than it says in your policy, despite the fact that only five years ago there was a review of your pension and the regulators said that it was OK and you'd get what you were promised.

    IMHO this would be a major scandal - there would be calls for an inquiry, the pension company would be under seige by the media and the members of the pension scheme would be up in arms threatening legal action, mis-selling of pension policies and calling on the regulator to intervene.

    That is EXACTLY the position lower paid public employees are in (except that the very lowest @ >£15k p.a. are exempt from the changes and in practice the increased entitlement to retirement welfare payments would equal the lost pension income, so no saving to HMG by cutting their pension entitlement anyway.)

    So put yourself in their position - you'd be furious too and you'd quite rightly feel you'd been led up the garden path and cheated out of your retirement income -the only difference here is that its the civil service pension scheme rather than a private pension company, so there is no recourse to law.

    For Deluded Alexander to make that IPPR speech in the way he did will have sent cold waves of real fear down the spines of hundreds of thousands of lower paid public sector workers approaching retirement who had responsibly planned for their retirements, only to face having the financial rug pulled out from under them at the last minute.

    It was cruel, insensitive and arrogant to say the least - political postering with peoples' lives - people like ambulance crews, nurses, council workers and those that do pretty thankless jobs for low wages, when the whole issue is supposed to be in negotiations with the trade unions.

    This is evidently what Nick Clegg meant by "New Politics" - i.e. laying into those who happen to be vulnerable whilst demonsing them for trying to defend themselves against a coalition of convenience hell bent on making the British working people pick up the tab for

  • Comment number 46.

    Continued from previous severed posting:

    This is evidently what Nick Clegg meant by "New Politics" - i.e. laying into those who happen to be vulnerable whilst demonising them for trying to defend themselves against a coalition of convenience hell bent on making British working people pick up the tab for the reckless gambling to earn obscene bonuses by their mates in the City, with every man, woman & child now in hock to the tune of £40k+ EACH to bail out the banks - this is the Debt that the Coalition says must be paid off ASAP.

    We must not let Deluded Alexander get away with this - IMHO he comes over as a shifty, nasty piece of work alternatively patronising and threatening vast swathes of the British population whilst demanding they pay for the sins of a tiny minority of greedy, rich bankers.

    Care to guess what the average civil service pension was last year?


    Care to guess what the average City banker's bonus was?


    This is obscene.

  • Comment number 47.


    Over and over I attempt to highlight the CONTEMPT that Westminster governance has for the governed. Watching Balls this morning: he was banging on about fairness - the fairness of 'THE BEST BULLY SHOULD WIN' I presume.

    And my MP: I challenged him with a matter of election law-breaking by his party (Conservatives) so he gave a (reluctant/belated) non-answer and declared the matter closed; I then appealed to every office in Westminster and a range of MPs and Peers, AND WAS FENDED-OFF OR IGNORED. It continues.


    The improper removal of pension entitlements will be followed by other, more direct thefts. Already any savings inexorably decline in value - while Ministers crow about the brilliance of low interest rates. Keep an eye open for 'Window Tax' equivalents: 100% Death Duty (probably coincident with a relaxation of the Right to Die).

    In passing: we are due for a TERROR TOP-UP, by my reckoning. Perhaps timed to coincide with returning ex squaddies, who will fill the media with stories of the real war.

    Meanwhile Dave is fixing Fathers with his dominant gaze and waggy finger.

    Nuff sed

  • Comment number 48.


    1) It's the Cameron (knee)jerk reaction of the week - something like 'Thought For The Day', but even less inspiring.

    2) I fail to see much difference between parents who are absent, and those who pack their children off to boarding school, so that they don't interfere with the parents' lifestyle. Photoshop Dave was a product of that kind of abuse, and it clearly hasn't done him much good. (It did Tony Blair no favours either, athough dad Leo did have the twin excuses of widowerhood and illness.)

  • Comment number 49.


    I hope my frequent use of: WE GOT OURSELVES another one, is taken as acknowledgement that these are damaged individuals trying, desperately to be the somebody that they feel they are not. (Though I admit my spleen tends to veer to the individual.) And that WE must take responsibility for voting 'rosette' thus sending ciphers to Westminster, there to excel in all that is unlovely in mankind (ambitious dog-eat-dog) with the least-lovely being further elevated to PM.

    In passing: 9/11 has been encapsulated (IDS take note)

  • Comment number 50.


    Deluded Dave delivers: ". . . in that TERRORIST attack in New York on 9/11"

    Dave should watch

  • Comment number 51.

  • Comment number 52.

  • Comment number 53.

    Barrie... all is explained...

    If, maybe, not excused.

    Lights! Trendy Camera Angles! Thumping Music! Flashing Images! And... Action!

  • Comment number 54.


    I don't know whether to laugh, cry or puke Junkk. You have given me someone to hate more than a politician! Some feat. As '76' would trill: "Can't wait for 'Made In Britain'."

    Martin Small even has the tortured look of the great artist.

    The coup de crass (sic) was his reference to "A MIXTURE OF JOURNALISM AND MOVIE-MAKING". Nuff sed.

    It all adds up: these are the 'SHAPE SHIFTERS' who have taken over the BBC, but the shape-shifting is not from lizard to tortured genius, IT IS WHAT THEY DO ON THEIR CLEVER KIT, TO TURN TOLERABLE PROGRAMMES INTO TO CARP!

    This is The Age of Perversity.

  • Comment number 55.

    '54. At 14:15 20th Jun 2011, barrie

    Have to say, in this case, I've been at edits for grout company corporate videos that had more excitement. Or insight.

    If this is what sucks up the media grad output, then a service has indeed been provided.


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