Posts Tagged ‘Have I Got News You For You’

Never Mind Jess Phillips, How Much Are Tory MPs Paid on HIGNFY?

February 8, 2022

As readers of this blog will know, I have very little respect for Labour MP Jess Phillips. She’s a dyed in the wool Blairite, who was very open and unambiguous about her hatred of Jeremy Corbyn when he was Labour leader. She said she’d like to ‘stab him in the front’, a remark about which she was naturally questioned a few years ago when she appeared on Have I Got News For You. She’s another Thatcherite, who apparently believes that privatisation have been wonderful for the national utilities and that life must be made even harder for all those feckless people out of work because they were laid off, are long term sick or disabled. The only aspect of her that strikes me as being at all left-wing is her feminism, for which she has had more than her fair share of abuse on line. This included Carl Benjamin, aka Sargon of Akkad, now of the Lotus Eaters, sending her a text informing her that he ‘wouldn’t even rape her’. But now I feel I have to defend her, as she’s been targeted by mad right-wing YouTuber Alex Belfield over the amount of money she was apparently paid for appearing on Have I Got New For You.

Belfield has put up a video claiming that she was paid £15,000 at the rate of £5,000 an hour, for three hours work. He seems to have lifted this story from the Heil, which I gather has been the source of so much of his content. Belfield was annoyed that she was receiving this money on top of her MP’s salary. He felt she should have considered this simply as part of her outreach work as an MP, and just been paid expenses only.

This looks to me like a bit of tit for tat because of the way Tory MPs have particularly come under criticism for raking in the money from their second jobs. This is to me a fair criticism, especially as the amounts they are paid are well into the tens of thousands and there is often a very clear conflict of interest between their role as an MP regulating or overseeing a particular industry and their involvement through their commercial interests. This is rather different to appearing on popular television panel shows.

There’s also the issue of Belfield’s and the Heil’s selectiveness in criticising Phililips, because it’s not as if she’s the only politico who’s appeared on the programme. Not by a long chalk. Over the decades the show’s been on their guests have included politicians like Lembit Opik from the Lib Dems, Derek Hatton of the Labour party, Cecil Parkinson, a former member of Maggie’s cabinet and Boris Johnson, amongst others. My guess is that they would all have been paid the same or similar fees for their time on the show according to the pay rates at the time. I don’t see Phillips’ fee of £15,000 as anything extraordinary or remarkable.

But it does two things that please the Tories. It allows them to make it appear that the BBC really is biased towards the left and that its presenters are massively overpaid. This supports Murdoch’s demands for its privatisation. But always be aware that, as Murdoch’s networks are private, the amount he pays his presenters and executives is kept very secret.

Thus, as much as I despise Phillips, I have to say that this time she’s undeserving of the criticism that’s being thrown her way. She’s almost certainly been treated no differently than every other politician that’s been on the show.

One of whom, a former motoring journalist and editor of the Spectator, has shown himself to be far more greedy, not to mention incompetent and malign, than Phillips.

More Material for the Grotty Squalid Picture Show, Alias Daily Mail – the Musical!

October 6, 2013

Just to prove that writing songs satirising the Daily Mail isn’t confined to people on Youtube, and outraged pop singers, I’ve found a few more pieces in which actors, journalists and celebrities express their utter contempt for the Mail.

The Mail doesn’t only run extreme Right-wing stories attacking immigration, the Left, the welfare state and single mothers. It is also known for regularly trying to scare everyone to death with articles about how just about everything under the sun will give you cancer. Here’s Russell Howard, the stand-up man from Keynsham, spoofing this aspect of the Heil’s journalism.

That’s at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4abk9fd_lR4.

And here’s Steve Coogan talking about why he chose the Daily Mail as Alan Partridge’s favourite newspaper because it has the requisite pomposity and little Englander bile Newsnight, with Paxo and Louise Mensch.

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That’s at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XvGVCKIvwL4.

Have I Got News For You, the BBC’s long-running satirical, also attacked the Daily Mail’s hypocrisy in printing stories about paedophiles, while at the same time also running admiring articles commenting on the appearance of underage, teenage girls.

That one’s at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKzgDBumCr0.