Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Guido's PMQs LiveChat: Beans and Gold Edition

Thanks to Guido for hosting today's LiveChat where the windowlickers gather for Wednesday's PMQs.

Another subdued session today with Red Ed not really landing any punches, although Michael White was spinning like Lord HawHaw on amphetamine on Twitter today.


Billy Bowden: Pink tie by Clegg

iainmartinwsj: @JohnRentoul @martinbeckford Hague wins, as usual, on the neckwear front

iainmartinwsj: RT @amolrajan: and i know i bang on about it every week, but Osborne's tie is unforgivable

John M Ward: Odd orange stripe on his tie...


Dick Scratcher: Hain Pantone Reference : 815B (Mouldy Satsuma)


joncraig: Looks like Sally Bercow in gallery above Govt side of chamber for PMQs. Bright red dress and red tights. Gazing adoringly at hubby John!


Dick Scratcher: LATEST: Al Megrahi’s mobile has just died.


John M Ward: I think that whatever ends up happening with forests, Cameron is lumbered with the eventual decision...


Dick Scratcher: She takes up two postcodes


Billy Bowden: thanks Guido , wonder if a question on world class cancer care in lybia will make it?

Sue Denim: Harman's on Jury Duty - wonder if the crim will be someone she knows?

Dorian Smith: Wonder if Ozzy will have his "these are not the droids you're looking for" look this week

no longer anonymous: osborne grinning like a gimp

Dorian Smith: Is that Servelan from Blakes 7 to the left of Red Ed?

missing bogey picker: about time Lord Haw-Haws fate befell Michael White

iainmartinwsj: Who on earth scalped Mili E?! Haircut too short - like Elvis after they put him in the US army.

Ed But Look Balls: Ed Balls looks like he's squeezing out an SBD fart!

genghiz the khan: red ed like a rabbit stuck in front of a lorry

sophyridge: Ed Miliband's white patch seems to be turning into a white stripe...

journodave: Gosh this is about as boring as a Mumford and Sons album.

mrsspeakernaked: i don't like seeing DC a bit flustered by the funny man opposite with a nasal listhp. I blame the cat

joncraig: Sally Bercow laughs again when hubby John says he wants to hear from Nicholas Soames, who looks like he's had a two black pudding breakfast.

Dick Scratcher: The Wardrobe with his key.

Dick the Prick: Put down that goose pie

C4politics: RT @cathynewman: Sally bercow watching pmqs from public gallery, dressed in more than a sheet

The Enormous Community: one in one out ? it's Dave's Prison policy

Tuscan Tony: Do Labour have a deckchair rearrangement policy?

Dick Scratcher: Anal Duncan sat on a pleaser

John M Ward: Grayling in a Gray suit...

Dick Scratcher: LATEST: Al Megrahi’s mobile has just died.

Tuscan Tony: To be buried with his tortoise, DS.

MrHarryCole: My favorite ever cabbie sourced story was one about Ed Balls brushing Gordon Brown's hair on the way to a restaurant.

Tuscan Tony: moral compost?

Billy Bowden: Is Gordon in the Chamber?

Spank Sinatra: Yes Billy - the chamber pot

paulwaugh: Heckle of the Day. Lab MPs shout "Timber!" as PM says he not happy w forest sell-off policy.

John M Ward: I think that whatever ends up happening with forests, Cameron is lumbered with the eventual decision...

genghiz the khan: Is Hazel doing her own signs for the deaf?

Dick Scratcher: Cable discussing the 2.30 at Chepstow

The Enormous Community: The Big Society isn't Big enough for Pickles

Dick Scratcher: She takes up two postcodes

journodave: Theresa May appears to be wearing your nan's curtains from 1973

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Guido's PMQs LiveChat: More Banker Bashing Edition

Thanks to Guido for hosting today's LiveChat where the windowlickers gather for Wednesday's PMQs.

An average session today with Red Ed going for the "Big Society" angle of attack which got Cameron a little hot under the collar as did some of his back bencher questions. However, where credit is due, Red Ed made a reference to McRuin with:

"He should not be so angry, it will cloud his judgement. And that's not the first Prime Minister I've said that to"


Dick the Prick: Yellow, Blue, Green - how sweet

John M Ward: Yellow, blue and green ties. Iain Martin will wish to be aware of this...

Dorian Smith: Clegg's tie yellow, Cameron Blue, will Red Ed complete the set? He'll probably have a blank tie.

Praguetory: George doing blue collar

Steve Miliband: Iain Martin;same suit/tie combo

MrHarryCole: Clegg gone for old school yellow. What is this? April 2010? #tiewatch [via Twitter]

Urban Tory: good ties can be used two days in a row, either that or it is a walk of shame

John M Ward: Hmm. Mili's tie *almost* works with that shirt & jacket...

iainmartinwsj: Right, made it to PMQs. I don't... believe... it... Cameron wearing same dark blue tie white shirt again. [via Twitter]

iainmartinwsj: Osborne looking better this week. Single colour tie, but matches it with powder blue shirt. And he's finally had a haircut. #pmqs [via Twitter]


Dick Scratcher: Hain Pantone Reference : 815B (Poisoned apple)


"Morgon, slickande människor..." (Svenska)

sentence substitute
a conventional expression of greeting or farewell used in the morning LiveChat


Dick Scratcher: CELEB WATCH: Anglian TV weather man in public gallery


Dick Scratcher: LATEST: Al Megrahi’s Toyota has just died.


John M Ward: "Argie Bhaji" - an Argentinian Indian-style veggie dish


The Enormous Community: Pickles has lured Clegg to the Pie Side of the Force


Spank Sinatra: Morning seat sniffers

Dick Scratcher: Mandy likes Big Ben

Tuscan Tony: Morgon, slickande människor...

Urban Tory: Does anyone else think bashing your banker should be new slang for having a w***?

Dick Scratcher: What about Bishop Bashing? Why do they have a seat in the Lords FFS?

John M Ward: "Argie Bhaji" - an Argentinian Indian-style veggie dish

Urban Tory: Argie Bhaji, isn't that Tevez's contract negotiations?

Steve Miliband: Osborne twatted Balls yesterday

Spank Sinatra: Nope - I think Osborne has been on the ketamine again

no longer anonymous: osborne now doing an eeyore impression

Dick Scratcher: LATEST: Al Megrahi’s Toyota has just died.

John: "No Mr Balls, I expect you to die!"

Dick Scratcher: CELEB WATCH: Anglian TV weather man in public gallery

Steve Miliband: Ed miliband will demand more vending machines in the sixth form common room

no longer anonymous: whoa, beetroot face

Dick the Prick: Blood pressure seems a bit high on this fellow

Beware of Geeks: Quite a red face - worthy of a Pantone of itself

Spank Sinatra: F*** me - he could explode at any moment - stand back

Bled White Taxpayer: Bit red-faced: too much vino collapso

Dick Scratcher: Hammond playing his organ - Chopin 5th I think

Dick Scratcher: Big Hairy B*****ks Society – which street in Camberwick Green does Dismal Dave live in?

BillyBob: seagull has splattered on Red Eggs hair

Tuscan Tony: Billy: it's the finger mark left by the person who spray painted his head.

MrHarryCole: Cheer up Nick, you could still be a nobody oppostion leader [via Twitter]

Tuscan Tony: CHarities = state funded quangoes stuffed with leftie placemen.

John M Ward: Is that a merrkat on Ed's left? Oh no, it's wee Dougie...

CHUTNEY: there is no big society in Dudley, just a zoo, a castle and a rubbish market

Dorian Smith: Red Ed turning into pepe le pew, without the charm

WoRaft: I think I'd rather see them mud wrestling.

Dick Scratcher: Libraries full of tramps & alkys

no longer anonymous: it's not like dave pikey goes to the library every week to borrow a book

Paulo: No way - her jaw can pick pickled onions out of a jar!

Dick Scratcher: Big Society = Major's Cones Hotline

Beware of Geeks: We should have more KFC and MacDonalds - it'll make it a Big Society

Urban Tory: does LauraK watch PMQs from the gallery?

Beware of Geeks: @Urban Tory - through red rose tinted specs no doubt

Dick Scratcher: Midwives at your cervix

John M Ward: Large girth! Too many lamb Chops in Chope...

Dorian Smith: BBC: "Working for the re-election of the Labour Party - this is what we do".

no longer anonymous: wales? isn't that a giant zoo?

Urban Tory: yeah 7,000,000 sheep. Its more of a Game reserve

Rog: Shouldn't Bercow be lurking under a bridge somewhere, waiting for passing goats?

The Anglo Saxon: Whats Mum from Shameless doing on the front bench ?

The Enormous Community: Pickles has lured Clegg to the Pie Side of the Force

Tuscan Tony: Odd Labour hate rugby with an odd shaped Balls as a shadow chancellor

no longer anonymous: labour must want to ban polo

Rog: Certain Labourites love croquet, though I seem to remember...

Dorian Smith: Angela Smith in bargain jacket from C&A 1985

Ed But Look Balls: Billericay Dicky!

WoRaft: Regulate the dogging sites; pay 'n' display.

Tuscan Tony: Harry is here to make Guido look slim and sexy.

Guido Fawkes: Oi

Ed But Look Balls: Two Oily Vaz Deferens in the HoC!

Dorian Smith: Priti not in pink, going for the adam and the ants look

Friday, 4 February 2011

What precautions to take when being interviewed by the media

An outstanding post from Mark on the WUWT blog after the stitch up on James Delingpole.

A bit of cut n paste for you media whores!

I have some expertise in PR and media relations and here is a primer on handling documentary producers.

Before the interview:

* Do not sign the release form/waiver until after the interview. Do not sign a release form that is a blanket release. Add in a line that limits your release to that day’s date and up to the current time of day. That prevents a subsequent ambush interview also being covered under the released.

* Carefully limit the length of the interview in writing when you agree to the appointment. I suggest a maximum of 30 minutes. No one is usually on camera for more than 90 seconds (if that) and 30 minutes is more than enough time for them to get what they want if they are being straightforward. Giving them more time just lets them go ‘fishing’ for some gaffe or misstatement. Don’t let them.

* Have someone there on your side who is going to be your watchdog. Get someone who doesn’t have trouble disagreeing with people and holding them to their word. They should be like your defense attorney.

* Ask for a specific list of questions in advance. Print it and have it with you.

* If they have any problems granting any of the above, you should take that as an almost certain sign that they are up to no good.

* Assume that they are recording the entire time they are in your presence, even if it appears the camera is off. Once they put a radio microphone on you, carefully manage when it is on and off. Turn it on and off yourself. A good tip is to actually clip it to the back of the chair you are sitting in instead of your belt. That way you can’t forget and wander off with it during a break.

* Try to negotiate the right to see the finished documentary before it is aired. Any producer will be reluctant, even if they are on the up and up because it’s more work. However, how they respond to this discussion can be telling. Point out that you’re not asking for any editorial input (which they would never agree to anyway), you just want to have some idea of what to expect before it airs.

* Remember that ALL professional documentary makers have already decided their angle on the story before they begin. Any claims to the contrary (such as “we’re just taking a neutral look at both sides”), should be taken as evidence that they are not being up front with you. Making a documentary is hard, time-consuming and expensive. They wouldn’t go to all that trouble and expense if they didn’t think they had an important and compelling angle on the story.

* Always research the people and the company making the documentary. When they first contact you ask lots of questions about who’s involved in production, who’s backing the project, which production companies are being used, where it will air, etc. Google all of this and follow the threads. Generally zebras don’t change their stripes.

* A few days before the interview ask who else they’ve already interviewed (to save costs they tend to group production sessions together). If you can, contact those people and ask how it went.

* Just as they are getting ready to roll, reach into your pocket and take out your own audio recorder (or cellphone with recording app) and turn it on saying “you don’t mind if I get this for my notes do you?”

* Doing video interviews is hard. Very hard. Coming across naturally and clearly is tough even for skilled news presenters and politicians. So if an interviewer wants to make you look bad, they have a head start if you’re a novice. This why I strongly suggest doing some practice sessions with a friend. Get out your camcorder, sit down interview style and go through a list of likely questions several times. Have your friend get tricky and try to mess you up. Have fun. Then make some popcorn and watch it. Make notes. Do it again. A little practice is better than none but a lot of practice is ideal.

During the Interview:

* Strictly hold them to the agreed length and remind them when they arrive and when the interview starts.

* Keep your answers very short and very focused. This can take practice because we all like to ramble on. Don’t! It never comes across well, even in a friendly interview.

* After they have asked each question, feel free to take a few moments to collect your thoughts before you start your answer. They will edit out the question anyway. Do not ever let them rush you. Do not ever engage in a rapid fire back and forth because this is where you are most likely to misspeak. Your watchdog friend should feel free to interrupt with “Let’s take a break” right in the middle of a question if they feel it’s appropriate. If you take a break, remember, mic off.

* If you feel like you are in the process of flubbing answer, immediately stop and say “that’s not correct, let me try starting over” and then just start over. Feel free to do this multiple times if necessary. If they try to use the start of your flubbed answer, it will look pretty bad for them when you release your audio recording showing they used something that they knew was “not correct”.

* If they surprise you with a question that you are unprepared to answer. Immediately stand up. The reason is that it can be a very effective technique to ask their “zinger” and let the shot hang on your uncomfortable expression. If you stand up, the camera shot is of your zipper – something they are unlikely to linger on for very long. Keep in mind that standing up is the only sure way to “scrub” an interview shot. Feel free to use it as often as needed. A good pretext can be reaching over to get your print out of the questions so you can note that this question wasn’t on there.

* If it is becoming clear that this is a hostile interview, don’t waste time making grand points that eloquently prove your case. If it’s good for your position, they simply won’t use it. This is like a legal deposition or police questioning. What you say can only be bad for you, never good.

* You may need to question the question if it’s of the “when did you stop beating your wife” category. This is perfectly acceptable to do. It’s your interview too. However, never have this kind of discussion with the mic on or in view of the camera. There is usually an additional shotgun mic on the camera that provides a less perfect but still usable audio feed if they choose. Also keep in mind that the interviewer’s radio mic can pick you up as well if they are within a few feet of you.

* If the interviewer keeps circling back and re-asking basically the same question in different ways, that means that he’s not happy with how your response is coming across. In a hostile situation this means you are doing very well! Now the key is to simply smile and “play broken record”. Keep repeating the exact same answer verbatim. Do not expand on it. Do not add to it. Nada. This might feel uncomfortable at first but just do it. They can’t use what they don’t have.

* When you feel that you’ve said what you want them to have then feel free to end the interview (even if the half-hour isn’t up). Just stand up, turn off the mic, grab your recorder, make some polite excuse and make like Elvis and leave the building. Let your watchdog observe them as they pack up and leave.

After the Interview:

* Before they leave, they may want to get what is called “B-Roll” footage of you walking about your environs. Whether you decide to grant this request or not will depend on how things have gone up to this point. If you are sure they are hostile or are unsure, then I suggest not granting this. It won’t help your position and it will give them lots of footage over which they can add their own narrative that will probably be damning to you.

* If they do turn out to be hostile to your position then, sadly, the best you can hope for is that they don’t use any of your interview at all. That means that they didn’t get anything from you that would help them make their case. Congratulations! That’s as close to a perfect score as you can hope for in this twisted game.

I hope that helps…

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Guido's PMQs LiveChat: Don’t Mention Manufacturing Edition

Thanks to Guido for hosting today's LiveChat where the windowlickers (or as Tuscan Tony likes to call us: fenestral slaverers or for the Latin scholars, lingua fenestras) gather for Wednesday's PMQs.

Rather dull with RedEd and Cam trying to outdo each other in the "who can be the better statesman" department rather than the more entertaining bun fight we look forward too.

Lots of Dodgy Ties of the Week this session with blue being the satorial choice of many:

John M Ward: Dave has a *light* blue tie this week...

Billy Bowden: Clegg wearing a pink tie , and a pink minger behind him

Billy Bowden: Hains tie is brighter than his skin !!!

Spank Sinatra: Blue ties must be on a BOGOF this week

Beware of Geeks: Sort your tie out Kris

Thanks as always to Dick Scratcher with his Hain Pantone Reference, a rather cheeky 815B (Tonto’s cock)

Pun of the Week's runner up is PunMeister himself John M Ward with:

John M Ward: "Oliver healed". Well, that's good news ;-)

but today's winner has to be Steve Miliband with a very clever:

Steve Miliband: Polycephaly is a condition of having more than one Ed

Best line of the Week runner up went to Tuscan Tony for:

Tuscan Tony: I see twelve fingers and the marks of a banjo string.

but newcomer equity abhors a maxim has it with a topical:

equity abhors a maxim: Kent's been Pfizted!

Here are the highlights:-

Steve Miliband: Devine intervention

Tuscan Tony: Morning lingua fenestras, as we latin Skolars say.

Dick the Prick: Fabricant looking beautifully bouffant

Steve Miliband: Polycephaly is a condition of having more than one Ed

Creamwhitebone: Ed has a grape behind him and an orange on his right....any more fruit?

Dick the Prick: Ed's taking lessons from Mubarak

Tuscan Tony: Ed's self interested, has a surprise honeymoon hol to Sharm el Sheik booked

Tuscan Tony: 25 consular staff with beach toowels and snorkels.

Dick Scratcher: Harman wants milking til she moos

Tuscan Tony: Ed should ask how many mummies have appeared on ebay so far, and has Cherie bid for any?

Steve Miliband: Where's Harrison Ford when you need him.

Ed But Look Balls: Ed's last question will be "Dave have you a biggun"!!

John M Ward: Dazza: Ed can never look more than "New Statesman"-like ;-)

no longer anonymous: i would have maximum respect for bercow if he got up and said "this really is a load of boring s***"

Beware of Geeks: Clegg looks strained

Dick the Prick: @BoG - sphincter issues

Tuscan Tony: Has Ed been bought and paid for by the Tories?

Steve Miliband: Maths, Physics, lunch, history, english, prep. That's your timetable Ed

Dorian Smith: Couple of Labour backbenchers spotted playing battleships, it's that boring

Tankus: milibands mother is in the gallery perhaps ...want to impress

Spank Sinatra: Hain's just cracked one off

glenoglaza: #pmqs peace breaks out at PMQs. Miliband under-arm bowling on Egypt & Afghanistan. Interesting tactic

Dick Scratcher: Bring back Geoffrey Howe FFFFFFS

Tuscan Tony: Bring back the dead sheep, Scratcher

no longer anonymous: and now on to pakistan - it's like a world tour

Beware of Geeks: Harman looked like she just sucked a lemon

Beware of Geeks: ...which is the nickname she calls her husband I believe

no longer anonymous: that guy certainly looks like his parents share the same parents

Tuscan Tony: I see twelve fingers and the marks of a banjo string.

Dorian Smith: East anglia - "High sixes"

MrHarryCole: Why did Vernon get a big cheer? Is it happy hour? Has he relaxed his door policy?

Spank Sinatra: Nipples like chapel hat pegs

Steve Miliband: Scammel Wheel nuts

Tuscan Tony: They could all become caddies on the excellent Royal St Georges.

equity abhors a maxim: Kent's been Pfizted!

Charlie: Cabbage pickers of Kent unite!

Dick Scratcher: Nadine likes flames licking up her chimney

MrHarryCole: RT @craigawoodhouse: Even a question about Viagra makers Pfizer can't pep this PMQs up. Very quiet session.

no longer anonymous: i didn't realise the welsh were allowed to vote

potemkin: PMQs don't mention adultery edition

Dick Scratcher: LATEST: Al Megrahi’s hard drive has just died.

Beware of Geeks: A cunning plan Baldry

Tuscan Tony: Support fo the mentally ill, Dave, like the ex-PM?

John M Ward: Zac at the back!

Spank Sinatra: Yes - free polo horses for fish

Double Dip: Pfizer's viagra job cuts won't be geting the growth up for Georgie

Govt-by-Cluster-F***: balls practising his "Gordoom glower"

Dick Scratcher: Lord Strathclyde likes diving

Trinny: parachute company in freefall

John M Ward: "Oliver healed". Well, that's good news ;-)

Spank Sinatra: Think it would be more fun sticking a glass of wasps up my arse frankly

no longer anonymous: privatise the forests just to annoy labour

Steve Miliband: Leaf it out

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Cat vs Printer - The Translation