Tuesday, 31 May 2011


BREAKING NEWS - Jacob Zuma takes on FIFA boss Sepp Blatter. Discusses orderly transition of power.

More on this political football soon...

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Too big to fail

The world's leading banks held billions of dollars on behalf of Colonel Gaddafi's regime, it was revealed this week. Here the Colonel gives us his "take".

"I like to thank these banks that were keeping my money safe during financial crisis that was happening in 2008. These, they were difficult times for everybody, not least, for great leaders of great nation like myself, who have invest so much money in your highly respectable banking institutions.

"I also like to thank the politicians who, at this time, bailed out those banks and who made sure that the precious billions my family had hoarded, that they were not in any jeopardy. Me, my family, all of us, we had worked very hard over the many years since I had come to power to earn this money. We sweated hard, we were fighting hard, we struggle hard to skim off as much as we possibly could from my country and from its coffers, in order to ensure we could keep on funding and investing in the good causes that we believe in so much - like the paying of foreign mercenary to guarantee the stability of Gaddafi regime. So we give many thanks to your politician who make sure that these banks that hold our money, that they did not collapse. We give big thanks.

"But most of all, we thank your taxpayer, who was giving his hard earned money to the politician, who then gave it to the banks, who then paid some of it to themselves and who then also use it to secure and guarantee the money that me and my family, we invest with them. Without you taxpayer, how could we have survived? How could we have paid those mercenary? How could we have paid your companies for the crowd control weaponry that your government, it kindly sold us in 2009? We thank you Mister Taxpayer - most of all people - we thank you!

"Of course, since that time, the ground, it has shifted under our feets, and your current bastard politician, they are freezing the assets of the Libyan regime. They make it so that we cannot touch it, this hard-earned money. What is the point of that, I ask you, when it could be put to such good uses? What is the point, indeed?

"But, I suppose the money, it was good and worthy while it lasted. It was - for a while at least - still put to many good uses. And as they say with the money that you have on this earth while you are alive, you can't take it with you when you go, when you die. That is indeed what they say. And so, it is true, I suppose, that I wouldn't be taking it with me when I go, when I die either. Which probably won't be that long now."

Monday, 23 May 2011

From the archive - Re: Superinjunctions

This was first published Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Twitter versus the Injunction - A Lawyer's 'Take'

"It is indeed a sad state of affairs when the legal process is confounded, not by government, not by the judges, but by that shallow and capricious phenomenon we call the Internet. That the users of a social networking site like 'Twitter' can have defeated an established legal firm seeking to protect the reputation of an esteemed client, is indeed troubling.

It is apparent to many not just in my own profession, but in the broader business community and in some sections of government that the 'world wide web' is looking increasingly like the 'Wild West': It has become barbarous, even feral. Long established laws, principles and ethics are being casually discarded. Procedures, conventions, practices that apply to the orderly, responsible dissemination of information are trampled underfoot by gossip, speculation and chatter. The execution of appropriate legal undertakings are being undermined by frivolous and unbalanced opinion.

When an established law firm went to court this week to obtain an injunction it followed due legal process. It did so to protect a respected client from the kind of tittle tattle that is rife on the Internet and that can destroy the reputation of a company as well as the livelihoods of its employees. That an august institution as the Law can easily be undermined should give us pause for thought. Who will defend you or me when our reputations have been thus maligned?

Do we really want an Internet that runs wild and unchecked, that has no rules nor boundaries? What if, say, we lived in a world where anyone, yes anyone, had access to the law, whatever their intent, whatever their status, and irrespective of their inability to pay? Well then Law would become a mockery, a free-for-all where any man could take issue with any other - however nefarious, or shallow, or ill-informed the intent might be. The courts would be overrun and would no longer have the capacity to defend those who generate wealth, those who keep our society ticking along - those who make society what it is.

Surely we do not want all men and women to have free and unbridled access to the Internet any more than we would want them to have free and unbridled access to the law? For that, I emphasise, must inevitably lead to the breakdown of everything that this society stands for, the trampling under foot of everything that is dear to us."

"I urge you all: Leave the law to those who can afford it!

(Lawyers name and firm withheld)

Thursday, 19 May 2011

A rape by any other name

Justice Secretary Ken Clarke came under fire yesterday when he tried to qualify the term "rape". Here we consider how widely the term is applied nowadays:-

No.69 a) - "The Wikileak" -
This Swedish definition of rape refers to any form of unprotected sex that results in unwanted discharge (also known as a leak). Some individuals have a tendency to leak everywhere, leaving others to clean up after them.

No.69 b) - "The Strauss-Kahn" - Not strictly rape in the Swedish or wider Eurozone sense. It involves the non-consensual intrusion of an unwieldy member state into zones usually designated to free speech and culinary sensations. In France Strauss-Kahn is often called the great seducer. It's worth noting some feminists view seduction to be a form of rape.

No.69 c) - "Reputational rape" - The application - or misapplication - of the word rape can have devastating consequences for a man's reputation. A highly emotive word - similar in its reach to 'racist' or  'climate-change denier' - it's often skilfully exploited by any politician looking to violate an opponent. In fact, The Justice Secretary took such a hammering yesterday you'd be forgiven for thinking he'd perpetrated a rape of ideas, of principles, of beliefs. And even if the charges - or discharges - were untrue or unfair they certainly appeared difficult to shake off.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Free association

A celeb gives us his "take" on super-injunctions

"Hi there. Listen, I dig freedom of the press as much as the next man. Let's face it, without a free press, I wouldn't have the kind of following I have. So, I'm grateful, really, really grateful for a "free press". Thing is, in recent years the press has started taking liberties. So, for clarification's sake, let me simply state the obvious:-

"Freedom of the press means - My publicist is free to provide newspapers, television companies, micro-blogging sites, what-have-you, with any information (including gossip) that might enhance my image, that might further my career, might sell my films - you know, generally make me look like a fucking hip, cool guy. And, similarly, those media outlets are totally and utterly free to swallow anything my publicist feeds them (No point in denying that!)

"Freedom of the press does NOT mean - The press can publish any information or gossip that contradicts the image my publicist has worked fucking hard to develop (and for which, incidentally, I have paid a stack of cash over the years). If I take it upon myself to cruise the streets of LA late at night offering working girls my largesse, offering them my abundance, then what business is it of the press? Or for that matter, what business is it of the members of the public who buy those damn newspapers that my hard-working publicist works day and night to provide with interesting snippets of information about my good self?

"Does that make sense?"

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Twitter and be damned - Part 69

This week celebs learnt Twitter can be used to get round super-injunctions. But we should never forget the micro-blogging site has tried and tested commercial applications as well. Even the legal profession can use it to sell its services...

Easyjudge - In need of a super-injunction? Easyjudge makes it quick and painless. Available to all irrespective of wealth. Yours for £60,000

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Afterlife 2

(An autocrat and a terrorist bogeyman discuss conspiracy theories)

Osama: You heard the latest conspiracy theory, brother?

Saddam: No, tell me about it.

Osama: People are refusing to believe I'm really dead.

Saddam: That's crazy.

Osama: Indeed it is, brother. Apparently the American government is refusing to release pictures of me. They say it might inflame my supporters. But some people on Earth have concluded that the real reason they won't release the pics is because I'm not really dead.

Saddam: Ha! Priceless, bro'. What a joke... Though I have to say it would make little difference if they did release them. Everyone saw pictures of my capture and execution, but conspiracy theories continue to circulate.

Osama: What? They saying you're not really dead?

Saddam: Yes... Can you believe it? People say I'm not really dead!

Osama: It's totally mad.

Saddam: Yep, but what can you do, brother? People love their consiracy theories. They need them... almost as much as they need us!

Osama: That's ridiculous. How can our followers need conspiracy theories as much as they need us?

Saddam: Not just our followers, brother. Our enemies need them too. A lot of them also want to believe that the likes of you and I aren't dead.

Osama: Struth! Mad old world, isn't it?

Saddam: Mad old world indeed.

Osama: Thing is, I want people to believe I'm dead... Then they might rise up in rage.

Saddam: I know what you mean, brother. That's exactly what they would do - rise up in rage. And so it's almost as though our enemies want people to believe the conspiracy theories. It means they've got us where they want us, but our followers do not.

Osama: Do not what?

Saddam: Do not have us where they want us.

Osama: Oh! I see what you mean, brother. Our followers want us in a place that'll make them rise up in rage. But our enemies do not.

Saddam: Exactly, brother... And now our followers, they cannot rise up in rage.

Osama: The cunning of the infidel never ceases to amaze me!

Saddam: Tell me about it, bro'... Although, it could be worse.

Osama: How so?

Saddam: It could be like Elvis over there.

Osama: Elvis? He's here? In this place? How so?

Saddam: Didn't anyone tell you bro'? This is actually the place where they send all the celebrity guys like us that people refuse to believe are really dead. It's a kind of like a purgatory, a conceptual celebrity purgatory. The big guy sends you here when the fans and followers refuse to believe you're dead.

Osama: I didn't know such places existed. The big guy didn't tell us.

Saddam: I know. I only found out about it myself a couple of years ago. It's what comes from having a fan club. There's no release or, at least, no final absolute release... It probably also explains the lack of virgins here too, brother.

Osama: And all the famous people, believers and non-believers alike come here?

Saddam: All the celebrities. I even saw JFK the other day?

Osama: JFK? Hold on! Everyone accepts that he's dead. The conspiracies surrounding him are not over whether he is dead but who killed him.

Saddam: You think, brother? Well, think again. There's actually another lesser known conspiracy that he's not really dead.

Osama: Struth! I had no idea... These conspiracy theorists think of everything.

Saddam: They do indeed!

Osama: So anyway, tell me about Elvis.

Saddam: Elvis?

Osama: Yes, Elvis. You said it could be worse, like it is for Elvis.

Saddam: Oh, yes. So I did, brother. Yes, poor Elvis. Well the thing about him is that he's stuck in this concept purgatory like the rest of us. Meantime, back on earth, all this speculation about whether he is really dead or not serves only to sell more records. The Elvis estate is still expanding... even now.

Osama: I follow you. So what's the problem with that, brother?

Saddam: Well, you heard the saying: you can't take it with you?

Osama: Ah! I see what you mean, brother. He cannot take it with him. That's must be very frustrating.

Saddam: Very frustrating indeed, brother.

Osama: But then, in our own way, we have not been able to take it - whatever it might be - with us, brother.

Saddam: You'd really want to, brother? Take it - whatever it is - with you?

Osama: Hmm... perhaps not, brother. Perhaps I wouldn't really want to.

Saddam: No, exactly brother!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011


(Exclusive! An ex-oligarch and his favorite ex-bogeyman are overheard discussing eternity.)

Osama: Seen any virgins since you got here, Bro'?

Saddam: Nope.

Osama: What? None?

Saddam: No, none.

Osama: I don't know, Brother. Sometimes I wonder what it's all about.

Saddam: What what's all about?

Osama: This martyrdom thingy. They said there were going to be virgins.

Saddam: I wouldn't worry about it if I were you.

Osama: Wouldn't worry about it? Of course I worry about it.

Saddam: As I say... I wouldn't worry about it. Brother Muammar will be here before long. He'll know where to find them.

Osama: What? The virgins?

Saddam: Yep... The virgins, Brother.