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Ryan Giggs cheats on his wife with the wife of his brother. Should we give a damn?

So Ryan Giggs isn’t the squeaky clean footballer that has adorned the walls of both little boys and little girls for the best part of two decades. He is in fact a bit of an arse. I couldn’t care less about his personal life as I don’t know him personally but is that right and there are certainly more guilty people in this story.

Firstly I’ll put a quick line about whether I should care or not. It is a tricky one because he’s done nothing illegal as far as I can tell. He has not broken the rules of being a footballer. It is a such but deep down the only people who should care are people who know him personally and sponsors who have bought into that carefully created image/lie. This is different to say the Jim Tressel case where he broke the rules of the sport and therefore lost his job. There are a section of fans who marched on his home over the weekend to show their support for their ousted leader. Being a cheat in their minds doesn’t matter – only winning and beating Michigan..

So secondly I’m asking myself why the wife of his brother is getting no stick. It takes two to tango folks. This woman is just as filthy and tainted as Giggs. Yes the Manchester United midfielder cheated on his wife and did the dirty behind his brothers back for years but the wife also cheated on her husband with his brother for years. It would make one hell of a Jeremy Kyle episode but because it is to do with a footballer it is tabloidtastic and not just for the million or so viewers watching the daytime ITV1 show.

Cheating happens. Sadly that is a fact of life. A significant number of people will cheat on their partners. I can’t really get worked up over it. I hope it never happens to me and I fully expect that I would never do it to anyone but it is so common I just ask myself ‘why is it news?’

Of course I know the answer – because it is Ryan Giggs. However the public don’t need to care and if they do then the woman involved deserves as much shame as Giggs himself. They are both what I’d call bad human beings. They aren’t evil but they are bad. I suspect if they have any moral fibre then they wouldn’t be able to look themselves in the mirror – but that is a big if folks. That is a very big if.

But it is a problem for them and those close to the story. It isn’t for me or for you. Ryan Giggs’ personal life should not bother us one jot. So he’s a bit false – he won’t be the first and he won’t be the last but remember he isn’t the only one to blame – but he is the only one to blame with a public image and that is what sells newspapers…

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Want a proper Watershed Middle England? Well learn to be a proactive and not a reactive parent

This isn’t going to be either pretty nor popular *puts on helmet* and I shall begin.

The shall we call it raunchy display by Christina Aguilera in The X Factor last year caused uproar. Well when I say uproar 4,500 complaints came in of an audience of 19.4million. Putting through the old calculator that means that 0.02% of people were outraged enough to write a letter, e-mail or pick up the phone. I remember someone telling me that night that within an hour of the show OfCom had received 16,000 phone calls complaining alone. Just another person lying to emphasise their point when the facts didn’t add up.

As for that display it wasn’t pornographic. I don’t remember seeing any tit. I have just reminded myself of it and really what is wrong with this:

I am stunned it even got that many complaints. What parents and well-meaning do-gooders don’t seem to realise is in the modern age sex and the whole situation around boys and girls moves a lot faster than it did in previous generations. People are having sex at a younger age and there are always stories in the newspapers about underage parents. If parents want to keep their children naive about the whole situation then it will take more than a watershed to do it but if they are so desperate then learn about the red off button and turn the damned TV off.

Spend more time with your children. If you don’t trust TV to bring up your kids then do it yourself. Most children have access to the internet and TV in their rooms these days so if you want to control what your child has access to then don’t give them this type of access. How many young kids have smart phones these days? More than you’d think I’d guess. How many kids have a computer with internet access in their room? More than you’d think I’d suggest. How many of these kids saw their parents up in arms over The X Factor display? Probably quite a lot.

Just doing my research I can see that the film Burlesque which the performance was from was rated as a 12A in the UK. That means to go to the film alone you have to be 12 or over but anyone under the age of 12 can go if accompanied by an adult. So why weren’t parents up in arms about that rating? If they weren’t (which they weren’t) then what is the difference between the cinema and the tellybox? Is it because one is in your home and one is not? Well no-one forces you to have a TV and nor does anyone force you to watch anything.

Now I’m no Rocket Scientist but even I can work out that a song from a movie called Burlesque by Christina Aguilera was going to be steamy. The X Factor did not hide away from what they were going to show so why didn’t concerned parents turn the TV off when this part of the show happened? It is not up to the TV companies to decide what is right or wrong it is up to the parents to decide how their offspring should be brought up.

A parent who can’t be bothered to monitor what their child is seeing or reading is not someone who has a leg to stand on when it comes to complaining about those things. If you care then be proactive and not reactive. You are the parent and it is your job to decide how to bring them up and it is not the state’s.

Remember there is always the off button…

For the record before anyone asks, No I don’t have any kids…

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A diet of only Monster Munch, Yorkshire Pudding’s or Marmite?

Whilst most Lib Dem bloggers are (rightly) busying themselves with blogs about the need for the police to have all party conference goers personal details to decide whether or not they should be allowed in, I’ve been reading about this insane article in The Sun where three people have a diet that consist of one single food.

Now that might be weird on its own but here were my initial thoughts. Firstly that the woman who eats only Monster Munch is quite tasty and secondly considering how shit all of their diets are then doesn’t their skin looking remarkably clear of spots and grease?

Maybe I look into these things too much. However how can a person put themselves through this? I know beef flavoured Monster Munch are nce but really is three bags a day and only that day in, day out for over ten years healthy? She said she ate properly during her pregnancy but then fell back into the habit afterwards. Why? We all like Yorkshire Puds (well when I say all – I mean erm…all) but only Yorkshire’s since he was 12? Marmite is fine and dandy but just marmite? Honestly?

Sometimes you get the feeling these stories are faked…certainly the with how great the skin is on all of them. Am I obsessed by just how perfect their skin is? Maybe don’t answer that…

I shall end with this. 20 year-old JoJo from just up the road in Colchester said, “Although I’m single now, I managed to date a boyfriend for a year without him discovering what I ate.” Firstly how on Earth did he not notice for a year that all she ate was marmite and secondly how on Earth did he not notice that all she ate was marmite? I know I said it twice but I felt it was such a major point it deserved to be said twice (joke courtesy of Red Dwarf running gag Series VI).

*shakes his head*

Oh and yes the Lib Dem Conference rules on ID are about are a disgrace. Looks like I won’t be going… I may blog on that later but there are many fine blogs on that and no-one wants to read another liberal’s view on what is going on…well not just yet anyway and look – Monster Munch!

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The Sun’s Front Page – Blatter & Gaddafi side-by-side

What can you say?

Whilst it might be over the top in the extreme as one of them isn’t ruthlessly killing his people you do have to admire The Sun in a way for going there. Both are a disgrace to human existence in their own way and both will do anything to cling on to power. I personally have little doubt that Blatter is just as corrupt as Gaddafi but the only difference is Blatter is only corrupt for money and power whereas Gaddafi is not only corrupt for money and power but morally too.

Oh wait so is Sepp Blatter.

So in conclusion The Sun went too far but I still thought for the gutter press it was actually pretty good.

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Ryan Giggs and Twitter – what next?

Many people are panicking over the fact that Ryan Giggs may try to obtain the names of all the people who tweeted anything about himself and Imogen Thomas. The news that twitter was disclosing the authors of four accounts in a case in South Tyneside last night brought about a flux of tweets from people worried that this case-precedent will help Giggs and that everyone is for the slammer.

As Lee Corso would say (no-one knows this side of the pond who Lee Corso is – this saddens me) ‘not so fast my friend’

First of all has a crime been committed? Technically yes. If anything put out in a public forum that Ryan Giggs had an injunction against Imogen Thomas before it was revealed in the House of Commons by Lib Dem MP John Hemming last week then they are as I understand it with my layman’s view of law guilty of contempt of court. However in reality the CPS would not see it as in the Public Interest to arrest and charge everyone involved in saying anything that may have broken the injunction of any social networking site. So the likelihood of everyone getting a criminal record from this is shall be say minute and that is being kind to the chance.

Next up is whether multi-millionaire Ryan Giggs would want to individually sue everyone involved. Can you see a footballer deciding to take on what they are reporting as up to 75,000 civil actions against members of the public? No. Neither can I. If Ryan Giggs really wants to go after someone through twitter it will be the first accounts that reported it – namely the anonymous ‘injunctionsuper’ account would be his target as there is a considerable chance that this account user actually knew of the injunction and had seen legal papers therefore directly violating the injunction. Other people who had commented on it afterwards had not and therefore any success in a case by Ryan Giggs would be a long-shot.

Ryan Giggs has played his hand extremely badly and with only a year or two left as a player he has a big choice as to what he wants to do after e finishes playing football. If he wants a job either as a coach, a manager or TV pundit then any suit against multiple members of the public will not be forthcoming. I can not imagine any media outlet taking on such a toxic personality considering what the public would feel towards him at that point and the same goes for any club knowing the backlash they would get from the fans. If he wants a reclusive life counting his pennies then he can sue and become one of the most hated people in the country.

The ball as they say is in his court. The thing is though at the end of the day nobody gives a damn that he cheated on his wife. They just don’t. At some point if he has good advice he will let the injunction slide and take the short-term public hit and apologise publicly to both his wife and to all his fans around the world. People will very quickly forgive and forget and he can enjoy doing whatever he likes for the rest of his career. Pursue a civil case against the public at large and his future will be as private as he wants it to be as nobody will touch him job wise.

If any of the legal stuff is inaccurate then please let me know. I did pass Journalism Law back in 2003 but heck that was a fair while ago…

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Cheryl Cole axed by Simon Cowell on US X Factor – what next?

In a way I hate myself that I am writing a full-on blog on the subject. In another way…no wait I still hate myself. So Cheryl Cole is out after the first round of auditions in Los Angeles because of concerns over her accent and her lack of chemistry with Paula Abdul. Hands up who didn’t foresee these problems? I notice no hands in the air.

One person who did foresee this issue was Simon Cowell clearly. He wanted to give Cheryl her shot as he thought she deserved it but isn’t it lucky that Nicole Scherzinger was already employed by the show to be a co-host with Simon Jones? Everyone and their mother knew that the show didn’t need co-hosts so it was clear from the off that she was there in case Cheryl didn’t work out and if there is one thing we know about Simon Cowell is that he is ruthless and will put the show before individuals.

The story – first reported by TMZ is only a surprise in that after taking so long to get Cheryl in, it only took one round of auditions to get her out. She was a star on the UK version of the show but her departure means that only Simon Cowell has migrated to the US version of the show full-time after a decision was made not to hire Dermot O’Leary for the presenters job. I don’t think Louis Walsh or Dannii Minogue were ever serious candidates. Can you imagine Louis Walsh on US prime-time? That would have been mildly amusing. He and Paula could have shared the limelight for most insane judge.

So now the question is out there as to whether or not Cheryl rejoins the UK show. There is no doubt that if she wants a seat on the UK version that she’ll be offered it but she will no doubt feel scorned big time by Cowell and the show itself. The UK version just seems to be collapsing in gravitas and I suspect ITV are more than a little bit scared by it all. Louis Walsh will return and be joined by Gary Barlow. Kelly Rowland and Tulisa from N-Dubz had been lined up to round out the panel but should Cheryl want one of those two seats then she would have it and a decision would need to be made.

Cheryl has every right to be furious but this is a huge moment in her career. If she leaves The X Factor family then her profile will collapse and she’ll disappear into the background. She owes an immense amount to Cowell and The X Factor as without it her career would never have blossomed to the level that she finds it at today. So it is time to lick her wounds and swiftly return to the UK version of the show. I know that is easy to say from outside as if I were in her shoes I’d chuck it all in but being outside gives perspective and hopefully her advisers are doing that right now.

Makes a change from writing about Ken Clarke…

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Now let us allow PC Simon Harwood a fair trial

Ok I know that title sounds surprising but we need to allow the full judicial system to play out before we convict. In the court of public opinion PC Simon Harwood is guilty of manslaughter and there is nothing we can do to stop that. However like everyone who is charged with an offence, the man deserves to have a fair trial with twelve jurors who have open minds and will make their decisions based solely on the evidence put to them in court.

I know I have my opinions and they are clearly the same as the majority. I have little doubt about that. However doctors will have their say and we must wait for what they have to say. One thing I will say though is I cannot believe that other officers are not standing trial with PC Simon Harwood for lying to the inquiry – both the internal and external one about what happened on that day. Had the video not come out of PC Simon Harwood striking Ian Tomlinson then we would have been none the wiser. Fellow officers that day tried to cover-up what may well have been a very serious crime and for that they deserve to face trial for those charges. Had I covered-up a crime and lied to police then I would be facing court so why aren’t PC Simon Harwood’s fellow officers on duty that day in London for the G20 protests?

As someone who has been a juror and a foreman of a jury I can tell you that jury rooms are very interesting places. I sat on two cases and one was a no-brainer where everyone in that room believed that the bouncers had started the fight with the two defendants and not the other way round so we very quickly acquitted the two defendants on all sevens charges. The next case though was harder as emotionally it was harder to remove personal feelings for some from the evidence presented in open court. We were torn for several hours until the Not Guilty part of the room were able to hammer home that we could only use what we were told in open court as part of our deliberations. So from 8-4 we got to 11-1 and still it took several hours to convince the final juror that we had to find the suspect Not Guilty.

Now this wasn’t some piddly little case. It was serious sexual assault against a 10 year-old girl. So you can see why there was a lot of emotional involvement from some jurors. The case was big enough that all the local media were in the courtroom for the verdict. Was he guilty? He may well have been but the prosecution did not convince me (or the majority of the jury) in any way shape or form. The evidence was flimsy and circumstantial at best. I don’t lose any sleep over it because I firmly believe in innocent until proven guilty and the same must be sad for PC Simon Harwood when he comes to trial.

I hope justice is done – whatever that may be. Be he innocent or guilty. What I will say is he deserves the right to a fair trial with twelve good people who will only listen and watch the evidence supplied in court. The court of Public Opinion is not the Courts of Justice and that distinction needs to be made.

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How to ruin your public image by an unnamed footballer

So a famous footballer in the Premier League had a six-month long affair with a Big Brother star called Imogen Thomas. Now in the context of what footballers get up to it isn’t even a scandal. The tabloid media would have a bit of a frenzy for a couple of days and the situation would die down. The public wouldn’t really care as having an affair isn’t a big deal in this day and age – whether you are famous or just an average Joe.

However the footballer in question decided that he didn’t want this story to come out. Fair enough in one way as he had a family whom he didn’t want to suffer. He didn’t think about that whilst screwing the Big Brother contestant senseless for months but that is not the point as we all know. He is famous so he believed he could have his cake and eat it.

So he got a superinjunction. The newspapers couldn’t report a thing. He got away with the affair and his wife was none the wiser. He could carry on with his life with no repercussions. Perfect. However something happened – the story got leaked. People on twitter talked openly about it and they talking about seemingly the right person. The footballer in question hasn’t publicly denied it and that speaks volumes.

So what does he do next? He sues twitter for breaking the superinjunction. Yes seriously. Considering only a small percentage of the country uses twitter his name still wasn’t really in the public domain but by bringing attention to the situation it has caused the casual observer to ask around and find out how it is. The name is now very much out there and they aren’t talking about the affair as no-one cares but they are talking about the superinjunction and the decision to sue twitter.

People are saying how incredibly dumb he is to sue twitter and it would be very interesting to see how it all pans out. By starting legal proceedings all he has done is confirm that it is him who has taken out the superinjunction. If it wasn’t him who people were discussing on twitter then why sue?

Had the story come out there and then weeks ago it would have blown over by now but all he has been successful in doing is drag his misery out. He wanted to protect his privacy but instead he has allowed the public to make a mockery of his privacy. Whoever his lawyers are must be rubbing their hands in glee. He has an extremely long road to win in court and yet the longer the situation drags on the worse he looks in the eyes of the public.

Football having an affair is a short-term non-story. Football suing Social Media for telling truths about him is a long-term legit news story.

Who said footballers had nothing between their ears?

Note: There is some conjecture over whether this was a regular injunction or the fabled ‘superinjunction’. Either/or the point remains the same but if it is just a regular injunction then apologies for the inaccuracy.

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The Sun and Daily Mirror face criminal contempt court battles over Jo Yeates murder case coverage

In no surprise to anyone with a working brain – both The Sun and the Daily Mirror face contempt of court cases over their coverage of the arrest of landlord Chris Jefferies in the Jo Yeates murder case. The 25 year-old was found dead by dog walkers on Christmas Day last year in a case that would dominate the news landscape for quite a while.

A news case involving a suspicious death on Christmas Day *and* of a pretty white young female is always going to rank highly on the ‘news-o-meter’.

Anyway a few days after her body being discovered the landlord of her property was arrested and several newspapers had decided clearly he was guilty. All sorts was being written about him, mostly conjecture and some pupils at the school where he used to teach said he was a bit weird. Thus clearly painting the picture of a man who could go out and murder someone. Only problem was there was no evidence against him and he in fact was not guilty. Fellow resident in that block of apartments Vincent Tabac has already admitted manslaughter but denied murder – the trial is set for later this year.

Chris Jefferies is already undertaking legal action against The Sun, Daily Mirror, Daily Mail, Daily Express and Daily Star. He has also decided to sue the police for arresting him – this has less of a chance of succeeding but the newspapers all have serious cases to answers and may very well be forking out huge sums of money to the former art teacher over their articles surrounding him at the time of his arrest.

However it is The Sun and Daily Mirror who said the more serious legal issues with contempt hearings that could land the editors and newspapers with serious problems.

Sometimes the media – certainly the written media – are too keen to jump on a bandwagon and not be honest and true with their journalism. The popular feeling was that he was weird and therefore guilty – so a public pillorying was more than justified.

I just hope that the newspapers take a long hard look at themselves and realise what they have done. The media just never jeopardise a trial and should always wait until the facts come out in open court. Making a decision based jointly on being populist and sales when it comes to criminal proceeding is both immoral and against the law. I suppose that sums up some sections of our gutter press at the moment.

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