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Wednesday 3 August 2011

Verity Murphy | 18:01 UK time, Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Tonight, we will be leading on our exclusive report on fresh allegations of phone-hacking at Mirror Group Newspapers.

Heather Mills has told the programme that in 2001 a senior Mirror Newspaper Group journalist admitted hacking voicemails left for her by Sir Paul McCartney.

Newsnight has also learned that many other prominent people, including footballer Rio Ferdinand and TV presenter Ulrika Jonsson, also believe they were hacked by the Mirror group.

You can read more about that story and listen to a clip of the Mills interview here.

Mark Urban has a report on who is likely win control of the new Egypt in the parliamentary elections. Will it be the young liberals who led the campaign anti-Mubarak campaign in Tahrir Square, or Islamic groups and that relic of the old regime, the army?

Andrew Verity has a report on how annual take home pay is dwindling in real terms.

And Stephen Smith has been delving into the power of memory, with a bit of help from celebrated mnemonist Dominic O'Brien - who will be doing a memory challenge live on the programme.


  • Comment number 1.

    Heather Mills, live performances from memory men, a populist article on take home pay plus some news.... I thought I was on 'The One Show' website for a moment.

  • Comment number 2.

  • Comment number 3.

  • Comment number 4.

    Celente Solution: The 21st Century ‘Global Game Changer’

    “In those beliefs rest the possibility for change, real change, not Obama-change. As Victor Hugo put it, ‘There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.’ I believe that ‘idea’ is Direct Democracy, and I believe that the time has come for the entire world to wrest power from the hands of ruling political mobs and put it into the hands of the public. ‘Let the people vote!’ ”

  • Comment number 5.

    The Decline and Fall of the American Empire

    That the American press ever took this highly-hyped “crisis” seriously merely demonstrates their prostitute status.

    Roberts has coined a new phrase… “Presstitutes”

  • Comment number 6.

  • Comment number 7.


    "Celente is convinced there is a basis for expecting positive global outcomes in the long-term."

    How? The human individual is getting madder by the generation. Western birth, nurture and schooling exacerbates. In this country (I presume in others) the super-mad reach the top of power/wealth.

    How does this 'positive global outcome' work exactly?

  • Comment number 8.

    GREAT LINKS BRO (#2 and 3)

    What a wonderful, global, composite mess!

  • Comment number 9.

    Eco-fascists at the BBC still trying to hide this !

  • Comment number 10.


    "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to fulfil it." (Santayana.)

    But what of the WILFULLY FORGETFUL? In this Age of Perversity, the wisdom of ages and sages carries ZERO weight.

    Oh that NewsyNighty could have a rush of gravitas to the gallery, and Cynical Smith might investigate the ROOTS of nihilism - instead of its practice.

  • Comment number 11.


    When the Ape Confused by language takes up science, he is STILL 99% APE!

    Nuff sed.

  • Comment number 12.

    the "islamic opposition" are, in terms of social evolution in the Middle East, the same function as Labour to the Tories - as soon as they get near power, the 'nuLabour' types will crawl out.

    Certainly Egypt's "Islamic Brotherhood" intend that future role, not that the Egyptians will find that out until after the elections. Like us, in fact.

    if there was a SERIOUS chance of REAL change, there wouldn't be allowed elections.

    (again, just like here...)

    hope the memory test works as well on IPlayer.

  • Comment number 13.

    #12 addendum: that wasn't true of Hamas btw - which is why immediately Israel tried to ban it, and accused it of being "terrorist" - a charge that the US and the craven EU adopted as well, never mind the fact that it was a complete lie, and Hamas had been holding a unilateral ceasefire for years beforehand, and also was largely free of corruption at that point.

    'Satan* forbid' that normal Muslims have a Govt that is democratic and responds to their real concerns.

    *for it certainly isn't God doing it. Although, in truth, i tend to blame egocentrism, greed and fear for such doings, rather than a non-existent metaphysical being. Mankind are quite capable of committing such atrocities upon itself, without any external help whatsoever. :/

  • Comment number 14.

    oh come on NN...this story hasn't a leg to stand on.....

  • Comment number 15.


    To Westminster, we the people are dupable; Johnnie Foreigner is expendable. Small wonder than that our corporate bodies behave like monsters (but mercifully refrain from calling themselves 'honourable' as they misbehave).

    Until we have integrity in Westminster, why should anyone behave any better than they do? At least we don't CROW about how devious we are - calling ourselves 'GREAT PROLETARIANS' for having demolished the self-esteem of a work colleague, or hidden abject failure on page 200 of a worthless report.


  • Comment number 16.

    The former Mirror journalist in Gavin Esler's interview said a private investigator with a criminal record had been employed to look into Andy Coulson's background to see if he was a suitable person to work for David Cameron.

    That's a new bit of information in the public domain. But did Gavin pick him up on it? No.

    How does the former Mirror journalist know that?

    Which private investigator?

    Who employed him/her to undertake this work

    What was he/she convicted for?

    Perhaps the Culture, Media and Sport committee would like to know even if the BBC doesn't.

  • Comment number 17.

    There's what comes out of the edit suite.*

    But there is also who gets invited into the studio.*

    If I wanted to 'shape a story', the historical credibility of the person being put up would be a serious first step.

    Them, there's how they get 'framed'.

    Because, today, on those cute 'newspaper reviews', this one was highlighted:

    Two rather savvy media stalwarts suspected the picture chosen was designed more to tackle the person than the substance of what was being said.

    So in addition to the guest, and the edit, there is also the *backdrop.

    Don't mess with the guys in charge of what 'we' get shown.

    When an event is need of interpreting, it's amazing how roughly the same thing can go a variety of ways, depending.

  • Comment number 18.


    Was that Esler being negligent or only obeying orders?

    The extent to which we are manipulated can never be known because we are manipulated into being unable to sort information/disinformation/misinformation. (1984)

    Posts and links on the NewsyNighty blog are thought-provoking and informative.
    But we should not lose sight of the fact that the blog is still 'up' SOLELY courtesy of the BB Conspiracists . . .

    Cui Bono?

  • Comment number 19.


    When we Laboured under St Tony's brand of integrity, enquiry after enquiry, was conducted into this-or-that ASPECT of Tony's Wars. When the total reached four, the Spin-Men began to point to this LARGE number as proof there was nothing to be uncovered - oh the irony! Chilcot is No5 - I think.

    It APPEARS that some integrity is oozing to the surface in such matters. This coming enquiry - rigged as to remit (plus ca change) - is to be shunned by some august bodies! Before drawing breath to cheer - remember even '1984' was a lie.


  • Comment number 20.

    18. At 09:32 4th Aug 2011, barriesingleton wrote:
    But we should not lose sight of the fact that the blog is still 'up' SOLELY courtesy of the BB Conspiracists . . .
    Cui Bono?


    But then history is littered with folk who bestowed stuff on the masses as a sop, and then got in a snit when the ingrates were not grateful enough.

    And as one compelled to co-fund, uniquely, not even sure I'm in too much of a cap-doffing mood on the 'benefits' anyway, guv'nor.

    Let's also note that the blog is 'up' often with some rather large voids, and 'down' quite a bit too.

    I'll take what I can get, but will not be cutting much slack for employees offering titbits to keep me sweet as a courtesy.

    The minute it does get withdrawn, or the censorship gets pushed too far, they can kiss goodbye to this licence fee owner's next DD.

    And I suspect the legal testing of that is one they would wish to avoid.

  • Comment number 21.

    Meanwhile, in 'news', from those 'sources' that can lead to questions being asked...

  • Comment number 22.

    Here’s a story that NN’s Mark Urban won’t be covering (and it’s even from the BBC’s beloved Guardian)…

    Nightly Britain bombs Tripoli. Bar death, what do we achieve?

  • Comment number 23.

    Well this is a different subject to your lead item, that I hope will get past the moderators and viewed by the production team as a "Topical news/talking point".

    It is a talking point that the BBC seem to be trying to restrict views on. Ben Gallop's blog response "New F1 TV deal explained" July 29th, has had over 8,400 responses in a little over 5 days.

    Mr Gallop has not replied at all and now the blog is showing "This entry is now closed for comments"

    I hope someone at Newsnight can find out why the BBC are acting like this and seemingly ignoring and trying to stifle public debate on the subject.

    The F1 show has been heralded all year as a brilliant success for the BBC, it won a BAFTA as well, last sundays race has been reported as having the highest viewing figures of any TV show in the UK that day. But nobody wants to talk to the viewers about this and the access to the blog was seemingly restricted before being closed.

    If it was all about the BBC not being able to afford the coverage, why didn't they share the races with another FTA, you do that for the World Cup coverage so that you don't have to show every game. I'm sure C4, ITV or even C5 would have gone halves with you. You could have even scaled back some of the production features as well and concentrated on the race itself.

    If it is all about cost reduction and not being able to justify showing award winning shows/series in full, then I will believe that when you start sharing other "shows". Why do we need the news on very night, surely one night on BBC next on ITV would be OK and amalgamate Eastenders with Corrie and move it Birmingham? That would all make sense to an accountant based organisation.

    A lot of viewers and fans are annoyed with the fact that the BBC got into bed with Sky so quickly, when they had a contract that would have given some breathing space and allowed a better deal to be reached, that's what has upset most of us.

    The BBC Trust has this as it's "Mission Statement"
    The 12 Trustees, supported by the Trust Unit, make sure the BBC listens to the voice of the public.

    Don't suppose this voice will reach your office as the "Thought Police" at the Beeb have been moderating Ben Gallop's blog quite heavily. Some, I should think, for justifiable legal reasons, so I'm not optimistic that anything will come of this.

  • Comment number 24.

    '@HuffPostUK - Syrian President allows new political parties, but protesters 'will not be fooled'

    Vis a vis earlier stories. And it's on Twitter, so it must be 'news/true/...'

  • Comment number 25.


    Newsynighty is only a subset of 'BBC Syndrome'; a part of the 'British Malaise'; endemic under the 'Westminster Ethos', providing miasmic darkness in which close mutant-strain parties rule by division. But there are parallels in all walks of life.

    Are all ways lost? Or have we been led astray? Perhaps the ways are still exactly where they were, but we are SLEEPWALKING to subservience.

  • Comment number 26.

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

  • Comment number 27.


    You have to embrace the 'now' ethos, going forward, Ted. The Nihilist Cohort needs a quantum of sideband with any download, if they are to remain online.

    Only interactive F1 (red button - alternative track layouts - choose cars and drivers - Fantasy Podiums - crashes on demand) could ever make it attractive in a meaningful sense.

    Homer rocks over on 4.

  • Comment number 28.

    There's irony.

    24. At 11:20 4th Aug 2011

    I post a link from twitter, but the link is (now)no good, but stays up when memory serves that usually not the case.

    Twitter or HuffPo unimpeachable sources then?

  • Comment number 29.

    '23. At 11:09 4th Aug 2011, teddie - the blog is showing "This entry is now closed for comments"

    I hope someone at Newsnight can find out why the BBC are acting like this and seemingly ignoring and trying to stifle public debate on the subject.

    Pop round 'The Editors'.

    'There's a lot of it about'.

  • Comment number 30.

    At 12:09 4th Aug 2011, JunkkMale wrote:

    Pop round 'The Editors'. 'There's a lot of it about'.

    Have posted to the editors as well as you say 'There's a lot of it about'.


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