Daniel Hannan

Daniel Hannan nicely sums up MSM v Blogs

Daniel Hannan explores and explains the sometimes unhappy relationship between traditional media and blogs…from his own blog, that is ironically part of The Telegraph.

Back in the pioneering days, blogs were seen as a challenge to the established media. And, in one sense, they were. When Guido scalped his first minister, Peter Hain, in 2008, something changed, though the newspapers were slow to notice. When, the following year, he aimed his tomahawk at Derek Draper and Damien McBride, old-style pundits were still laboriously explaining to their readers what these blog thinggies were. By the time Tim Yeo became Guido’s latest victim, no one needed to ask any more.

When a dozen dead tree newspapers determined the agenda, the media’s chief power lay in not reporting a story – not through conspiracy, but from shared assumptions about what constituted news. Take the leak of the “hide the decline” emails from climatologists at the University of East Anglia in late 2009. At first, the astonishing trove was reported only by bloggers. It wasn’t that environment correspondents were meeting behind drawn blinds and vowing to repress the discovery; it was that, being uncomplicated believers in the AGW orthodoxy, they couldn’t see why the emails were a story. Only when repeatedly needled by online commentators were they were eventually forced to report perhaps the biggest event in its field of the century.

The key moment came when the story was picked up by James Delingpole, whose post attracted 1.6 million hits. Tellingly, that post appeared here, on Telegraph Blogs. Blogs were now part of the established media. In the early days, some had believed that the MSM would be displaced, others that the old brands would conscript the upstarts. In fact, something more interesting happened: the distinction broke down.   Read more »

Labour supporters believe that taxes are to punish the rich, not to raise revenue

Daniel Hannan blogs at The Telegraph about taxation and how Labour supporters believe that taxes are to punish the rich, not to raise revenue.

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Ponder the graph above. Sixty-nine per cent of Labour supporters would want a top rate tax of 50 per cent even if it brought in no money.

I’m sure they’d dispute the premise. I’m sure they’d insist that it did bring money in. And, on one level, they’d believe it; it’s human nature to start with the result we want and then rationalise it to ourselves with what look like hard data. I think their rationalisation would be false, obviously – once the behavioural consequences of the tax are factored in, it becomes a net drain on revenue – but I might be subject to my own confirmation bias in the other direction.

Anyway, this isn’t a blog about the statistics – I’ve already posted one of those. No, this is a blog about the mind-set of people who see taxation, not as an unpleasant necessity, but as a way to punish others.  Read more »

Daniel Hannan on judging blogs by their comment threads

People, okay mainly left wing tossers with their heads jammed up their fundament, claim that this website is rubbish or a sewer not by what is written on it but by what is in the comments. their site is better, smarter or more erudite because we have nicer commenters is the answer.

Of course it is petty jealousy fuelled with an unhealthy dose of intellectual snobbery. The market speaks and the market decides if you’re good enough not some pompous leftwing snob’s idea of what people should say or think.

Daniel Hannan explores this in his blogpost (again the Telegraph is a mainstream “news medium” that has bloggers).

The FT’s former correspondent at the European Parliament used to ask me the same question at every press conference. “So does this mean you voted the same way as Jean-Marie Le Pen?”

It’s amazing how many people want to judge a proposal, not by its merits, but by its incidental supporters. We need only state their implication openly – that you should drop an otherwise sensible idea because someone you don’t like agrees with you – to see how absurd it is.

Yet people carry on doing it. It’s the phenomenon that lies behind Godwin’s Law, the observation that all Internet discussions, if allowed to run long enough, end with comparisons to the Nazis. Hitler didn’t like trade unions! Hitler banned foxhunting! Hitler was a vegetarian! Hitler was an atheist! Hitler was a Catholic! Hitler was a pagan!

Now there’s a new variant of the phenomenon: judging a blog by its comment thread. Again, the absurdity should be obvious. Bloggers are not responsible for what happens after they have posted. Those who comment most aggressively are more often than not hostile to the writer. The word “troll” didn’t originally mean, as is often thought these days, someone who is rude and unpleasant; it meant someone who used an assumed identity to discredit someone else.  Read more »

Britain and the EU would be happier divorced [VIDEO]

A reader emails:

With reference today’s post about Farage; I saw an absolutely brilliant debate on the BBC World Service TV this weekend, the Intelligence2 (as in squared) debate.

Farage and Hannan debated Leon Brittan and a German pulchritude on the motion “Britain and the EU would be happier divorced”.

They smashed it. Great to see if you can find it.  Read more »

It’s never too late

Daniel Hannan MEP on the left’s position regarding the eurozone bailouts firstly on Spain:

and on Greece:

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OMG a gap, let’s fill it with crap

NZ Herald

It looks like late last night the NZ Herald editors had a gap to fill and quickly knocked up some bullshit to fill it.

I can imagine the consternation…oh no! a gap, how can we fill it?

Some bright spark would have said to rip an idea from a popular blogger and so they had a quick scroll through and found something they could twist into an insult against John Key. Perish the thought that one of their journalists actually read The Telegraph. Clearly there must have been nothing of value in The Guardian that they could have used.

Now let’s look at this…the Herald has used a headline with quote marks…except Daniel Hannan never said that. What he did say was:

He is very clever and, at the same time, utterly charming in the informal and artless way that New Zealanders have. While he has little time for dogmas and theories, he has a clear sense of where he wants to take his country, and is able to communicate that sense to people around him.

That is quite a bit different from the “quote” used in the headline.

Then of course is the description of Daniel Hannan. The Herald describes him as “a journalist”….which is technically true but he is more well known as a Conservative MEP and has been since 1999. He was recently here in New Zealand for an IDU meeting so not only did he meet John Key on a plane, but he also would have spent some quite considerable time with him at the IDU meetings in Wellington. The repeater who pasted together this article also clearly doesn’t listen to Leighton Smith who spoke with Daniel Hannan for about an hour the other day.

This was a nothing article, 5 days after the fact…Daniel Hannan has written more more columns since then, and poorly researched and deceptively wrong with the headline. No wonder I call them the NZ Horrid.

Daniel Hannan on John Key

The Telegraph

Daniel Hannan has just been down to New Zealand and he blogs at The Telegraph about John Key and hwy he is now Daniel’s favourite Anglosphere politician:

To be honest, I’m slightly surprised to find myself admiring him as much as I do. I have blogged before about the two heroes of the AnglosphereStephen Harper and Tony Abbott. Both men are idealistic conservatives. Harper is comprehensively dismantling the Trudeau settlement, cutting taxes, devolving power and making Canada the Anglosphere’s foreign policy hawk. Abbott horrifies Australia’s metropolitan establishment by opposing restrictions on free speech, attacking carbon taxes, believing in God and pwning Labor in the polls.

John Key has a very different style: practical, moderate, distrustful of doctrine. Like David Cameron, he bases his appeal on competence rather than ideology. The two men, as you’d expect, are close, and our own PM often cites John Key as a soul-mate.

The thing is, his competence is visibly yielding dividends. New Zealanders know an able manager when they see one. While other countries have toppled into recession, theirs is growing. Most Kiwis understand that this didn’t just happen on its own and, being a level-headed people, they see their PM’s background in international finance as an asset rather than a cause for resentment.

This week, John Key will come to Britain to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. I asked him what advice he had for us. ‘Get into Asia,’ he replied simply. ‘It’s growing while Europe is shrinking’. Put like that, it’s impossible to disagree, no?

Daniel Hannan and Leighton Smith

For those of you who missed yesterday’s discussion between Daniel Hannan and Leighton Smith here is a the link and audio.

It is well worth a listen. He talks about the Eurozone and the Eurocalypse.

Quote for the Day

The Telegraph

Daniel Hannan delivers another great quote. I wish we could say the same about here:

“People are being rescued from the squalor of welfare dependency. Schools are being prised from the grip of the LEAs and teaching unions. Quangos are being scrapped and local councils strengthened. The pensions timebomb is being defused. The engorged state payroll is being slimmed.”


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Daniel Hannan at CPAC 2012

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