Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Four More Years

So, dear blog reader, for a change the vasty majority of the whole world woke up to some reasonably good news on Wednesday morning. President Barack Obama has been re-elected to a second term, defeating Republican challenger - and hairdo - Mitt Romney. America's first black president secured the two hundred and seventy votes in the electoral college needed to win the race surprisingly early in the night given the close nature of the race that most commentators had been predicting. In his victory speech before supporters in Chicago, Obama said he would talk to Romney about 'where we can work together to move this country forward.' Obama prevailed despite lingering dissatisfaction with the US economy and a well-funded challenge by Romney. The Democrats also retained control of the Senate, which they have held since 2007, while Republicans kept control of the House of Representatives. With Florida's twenty nine electoral votes still undecided - but, now, an irrelevance - Obama won three hundred and three electoral votes to Romney's two hundred and six. Obama greeted jubilant supporters and congratulated Romney and Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan on their hard-fought campaign. 'We have picked ourselves up, we have fought our way back and we know in our hearts that for the United States of America the best is yet to come,' he said, quoting Frank Sinatra. Obama said that he was returning to the White House 'more determined, and more inspired than ever about the work there is to do, and the future that lies ahead.' So, that was, effectively, the end of The West Wing series eight, series nine begins with the inauguration in January. The president pledged to work with Republican leaders in Congress to reduce the government's budget deficit, fix the tax code and reform the immigration system. Personally, if this blogger had been Obama, I'd've said to all those states who didn't vote for him, 'you're getting nowt, I'm going to pour all the money I've got into Ohio.' Which probably explains why yer actual Keith Telly Topping would've never made a politician. 'We are an American family and we rise and fall together as one nation,' he said. In Boston, where his campaign was based, Romney - through barely concealed gritted teeth - congratulated the president and said he and Ryan had 'left everything on the field' and had 'given their all' in the campaign. 'This election is over, but our principles endure,' he said. 'I so wish that I had been able to fulfil your hopes to lead the country in a different direction.' Under the US constitution, each state is given a number of electoral votes in rough proportion to its population. The candidate who wins two hundred and seventy electoral votes - by prevailing in the mostly winner-takes-all state contests - becomes president. The popular vote, which is symbolically and politically important but not decisive in the race, remains too close to call. On Tuesday, the president held the White House by assembling solid Democratic states and a number of important swing states such as Colorado, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota, Virginia and Wisconsin. His narrow victory in Ohio, the critical Mid-Western swing state, sealed the victory. Romney won North Carolina and Indiana, both of which Obama had won in 2008, as well as the solid Southern Republican states. But he was unable to win in Ohio or other states needed to breach the two hundred and seventy threshold. Also on Tuesday's ballot were eleven state governorships, a third of the seats in the one hundred-member US Senate and all four hundred and thirty five seats in the House of Representatives. Obama's victory came despite lingering high employment - 7.9 per cent on election day - and tepid economic growth. But voters gave him credit for his 2009 rescue of the US car industry, among other policy accomplishments, and rewarded him for ordering the commando mission that killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan last year and his handling of the recent disaster caused by super storm Sandi. He and Romney, as well as their respective allies, have spent more than two billion bucks - largely on adverts in swing states.

Of course, the single funniest aspect of the US election was the fact that FAUX News ended up with a collective face like a smacked arse at the result. Gurning into their mom's apple pie, they were. A sight to see, dear blog reader. Effing hilarious, so it was.
This blogger laughed, and he laughed, and he laughed until he stopped. And then, he laughed some more. But, even funnier than that, an intra-channel civil war broke out on FOX News after the network called the state of Ohio, and therefore the presidency, for Obama. Karl Rove, who masterminded two presidential election victories for George W Bush and is now a paid FOX pundit, objected - strongly - to his employer's decision to call Ohio for Obama. Rove, who has ploughed millions of dollars into supporting Romney's campaign, said the call was 'premature.' What followed was truly bizarre: after Rove's fleck-marked objections, presenter Megyn Kelly went to the FOX News decision desk to interrogate those statisticians responsible for the call. They defended their decision and, basically, said that there was no way Romney could win Ohio. Rove continued to argue the toss with Republican elections guru Michael Barone about Ohio. Barone, who was involved in making the call for the FOX decision desk, said half of Cuyahoga County was yet to report, and would return strongly Democratic. Rove back-tracked somewhat when he heard this and said: 'Oh well if I'd seen those numbers. I was just raising a cautionary note.' And, a sour-faced one as well.
Meanwhile, how long do we think it's going to be before someone claims that 'it was the Mirra wot won it!'? (Keith Telly Topping sends his thanks to Doug for drawing this blogger's attention to that particular endorsement.) And, if you look up 'less than glowing Obama endorsements' on Goggle, that'll be the one you'll get most hits on.
Of course, David Cameron was straight in with his tongue rammed so far up Obama's chuff there was no room for anyone else. Sickening, dear blog reader.

On Monday's opening episode of the new series of MasterChef: The Professionals, someone appeared to have kidnapped Monica Galetti and replaced her with some smiling, chatty, frankly nice doppelganger. It was really disturbing. Having asked some Internet colleagues to 'place your bets now on how long it will be before Monica makes one of the contestants cry for their mummy', yer actual Keith Telly Topping was most disconcerted. He kept on bellowing at the TV screen 'who are you and what have you done with the real Monica Galetti?' Give the lass time, though, in episode two she was back to her scowling, acid-tongued best. There was the Monica were all know and tremble at the very mention of! 'Get yourself together, sort yourself out Andy and make me a choux!' She's back, dear blog reader!
ITV drama flop Monroe was watched by just over three and a half million punters on Monday, according to overnight data. The ITV medical drama, currently sinking faster than the NHS (though not as fast, to be fair, as Homefront) averaged 3.41m n the 9pm hour. Little England broadcast earlier to 2.91m. On BBC1, Panorama took 2.63m from 8.30pm and Richard Hammond's Miracles of Nature earned 3.76m immediately afterwards. BBC2 had a good night with University Challenge (2.97m), MasterChef: The Professionals (2.18m) and Churchill's Desert War: The Road to El Alamein (1.74m/) all pulling in decent figures.

Neil Gaiman's new Doctor Who episode is to feature The Cybermen, the BBC has confirmed. Warwick Davis, Jason Watkins and Tamzin Outhwaite will all appear in the 2013 adventure. The episode will see The Doctor and his new companion, Avocado, encounter The Cybermen and a band of misfits on a mysterious planet. Doctor Who's lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat said: 'Cybermen were always the monsters that scared me the most! Not just because they were an awesome military force, but because sometimes they could be sleek and silver and right behind you without you even knowing.' He added: 'And with one of the all-time classic monsters returning, and a script from one of our finest novelists, it's no surprise we have attracted such stellar names as Tamzin, Jason and Warwick.' The Cybermen - created by Doctor Kit Pedler and Gerry Davis - first appeared on Doctor Who in 1966 in William Hartnell's last story The Tenth Planet and last featured on the BBC's long-running popular family SF drama in the 2011 episode Closing Time.

Yer actual John Barrowman his very self has insisted that he would return to Doctor Who 'at the drop of a hat.' Not that anyone has actually asked him to, he just thought he'd mention it, on the off chance! The actor told TV Choice that he is yet to be approached about a possible role in the popular long-running family SF drama's fiftieth anniversary celebrations. 'I haven't heard anything,' he admitted, when asked about reprising his role as Captain Jack Harkness. 'There was a rumour online that said I'm not able to do it because of my schedule. But, actually, I haven't been asked. So it's nothing to do with my schedule.' Yeah, there are rumours online all the time, John. Mostly about Tory MPs and their nefarious doings. I wouldn't take much notice of them, personally. Barrowman added that he is 'keen' to film more episodes of both Doctor Who and its spin-off series Torchwood. 'If they come to me and ask me to do Doctor Who or Torchwood ever again, I would do it at the drop of a hat,' he said.

Lord Sugar-Sweetie paid a visit to the EastEnders set on Tuesday to film an upcoming Children in Need sketch. The business tycoon and Apprentice host has been tweeting pictures from the BBC soap's base in Elstree as he got involved in this year's charity fundraiser. Little is known about the filming, but Sugar-Sweetie appeared to have been working with Shane Richie, Nitin Ganatra and Perry Fenwick. Addressing his online followers, Sugar-Sweetie revealed: 'Off to do some filming now at the set of EastEnders for a Children in Need sequence - hope to have some fun. Will let you know.' Fun? EastEnders? Surely some mistake? Meanwhile, tweeting a picture of himself and Sugar, Richie joked: 'Guess who's playing Alfie's dad?'

The executive who runs Richard Desmond's soft core porn channels including Red Hot TV is to be handed responsibility for heading Channel Five, which broadcasts children's programmes such as Peppa Pig and Fifi and the Flowertots. Paul Dunthorne is the long-serving managing director of Portland TV, which operates seventeen channels including Gay Chat TV and Television X, which broadcasts shows whose titles include Surburban Orgy, Northern Exposer and Wobbling Whoppers 2. Not as good as Wobbling Whoppers 1 in this blogger's humble opinion but that's, probably, by the by. Dunthorpe will now take over day-to-day management of Channel Five, taking responsibility for programmes on Milkshake!, the three hour-plus block of children's programmes which the broadcaster shows every morning on the channel – whilst retaining his existing job. Let's just hope he doesn't get mixed up when in a commissioning meeting otherwise all manner of confusion and discombobulation may ensue. With hilarious consequences. Ordinarily, one might expect a newspaper like the Daily Scum Express to be 'outraged' about such an appointment, complete with 'won't somebody think of the children' type headline. But, of course, the Daily Scum Express is also owned by Desmond. As, indeed, was Asian Babes until 2004. Dunthorne, who will take over responsibility for running the channel immediately, will become the chief operating officer at Channel Five, reporting to Paul Ashford, the editorial director at Desmond's holding company, Northern & Shell. The expansion of Dunthorne's responsibilities from the adult to the mainstream follows the already announced departure of Jeff Ford, the director of programmes at Channel Five. Ford will leave Channel Five on 1 December. Channel Five is also looking for a new creative executive to take over Ford's programming responsibilities. 'Paul Dunthorne will take over day-to-day management of Channel Five,' said a spokeswoman. 'The board looks forward to announcing an additional appointment to lead Channel Five's content operations, including commissioning and acquisitions.' Transmission and the continuity announcers involved with Milkshake!, which broadcasts shows including Peppa Pig, are already based at the studios of Portland TV in Docklands. Like Dunthorne, Ford previously reported in to Paul Ashford, the editorial director responsible for content across all of Northern & Shell's portfolio of newspapers and magazines including OK!, the Daily Scum Express, the Daily Lies, the Daily Lies Sunday and Sunday Scum Express.

Police probing an alleged underage sex ring allegedly at the heart of Margaret Thatcher's government were warned 'stop investigating if you want to keep your jobs,' according to claims made in the Daily Lies. Officers in London were , the newspaper claims, ­inquiring into allegations made by a teenage rent boy that a Cabinet minister had been abusing him. The youth claimed to be one of a number of boys regularly having sex with rich and powerful men in the 1980s – 'some of whom would fly to the illegal orgies from Europe' according to the report. As well as the Cabinet minister - who is not named by the paper but who is, the Lies suggest, still alive – the youth allegedly 'pointed the finger' at 'judges, European bigwigs and senior civil servants.' This blogger is not sure, exactly, what a 'European bigwig' is, or how one becomes such a thing. The youth, the Lies allege, told his story to detectives, who are understood to have received other allegations about the same minister. But a former detective who worked on the case revealed they were suddenly told to halt the probe. The Lies claim that the 'furious' ex-policeman said: 'It wasn't that we ran out of leads but it reached a point where a warning to stop came. It was a case of "get rid of everything, never say a word to anyone." It was made very clear to me that to continue asking questions would jeopardise my career.' A former Tory Minister, meanwhile, has made incendiary claims that one of Thatcher's closest aides was implicated in one of the most harrowing child abuse scandals of recent times. Rod Richards, a former Conservative MP and ex-leader of the Welsh Tories, made the allegation that he had seen 'evidence' linking Sir Peter Morrison to the North Wales children's homes case, in which up to six hundred and fifty children in forty homes were sexually, physically and emotionally abused over a twenty year period. Richards also linked a second leading Tory grandee – now dead – to the scandals at homes including Bryn Estyn and Bryn Alyn Hall, both near Wrexham. Although, rather unhelpfully, the Daily Scum Mail chose not to name this individual when reporting Richards's allegations. This is the same Daily Scum Mail, incidentally, that were so critical of the BBC's decision not to name the so called 'Tory grandee' allegedly involved in claims of child abuse in a Newsnight report last week. Just thought I'd point that out. Richards claimed that 'official documents' had identified the pair as 'frequent, unexplained visitors' to the care homes. Richards said, bluntly: 'What I do know is that Morrison was a paedophile. And the reason I know that is because of the North Wales child abuse scandal.' He added that the foreign secretary, William Hague, who was welsh secretary at the time of the inquiry, 'should have seen the evidence about Morrison.' Morrison was Lady Thatcher’s parliamentary private secretary and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party. Hague - seen left with 'a major, well-known Tory party supporter' - called the inquiry into the scandal in 1996 after care homes boss John Allen was convicted of child abuse. The inquiry concluded that a paedophile ring around Cheshire and Wrexham had caused 'appalling suffering' to children in care in the Seventies and Eighties. Richards could not offer anything to substantiate his claims against Morrison, who died in 1995 at the age of fifty one. But, he said that as the MP for Chester, Morrison would have had 'no obvious reason' to visit care homes in other MPs' constituencies. The claims, the Daily Scum Mail note, 'have emerged amid growing public revulsion over the institutional failures revealed by the Jimmy Savile scandal.' They then helpfully add: 'Savile was a regular guest of Lady Thatcher's at Chequers.' Yes, he was. Richards added that he was 'frustrated' that the thirteen  million quid, three-year inquiry headed by Sir Ronald Waterhouse QC had not uncovered any evidence to link Morrison to the abuse. He said: 'It would seem that there are some parallels with Savile in that Morrison got in under the radar, and his activities did not appear in the final report.' Richard's intervention follows claims last week by former Tory Minister Edwina Currie that Morrison had sex with sixteen-year-old boys when the age of consent was twenty one and that he had been protected by a 'culture of sniggering.' In her diaries, she called Morrison 'a noted pederast,' with 'a liking for young boys' According to an article by Gruniad journalist Nick Davies in 1998, a Sunday Mirra crime reporter received two tip-offs from police officers who alleged that Morrison had been cautioned for cottaging with underaged boys in public lavatories. Labour MP Tommy Watson (power to the people!), who first raised the issue of links between a paedophile ring and the heart of Government, said: 'Since then, many more ordinary people have contacted me about suspicions they have had of a wider wrongdoing – in some cases so heinous it made me cry. They have talked of psychopaths marking children with Stanley knifes to show "ownership." They tell of parties where children were passed around the men. They speak of golf course car parks for child abuse after a game. And they have named powerful people – some of them household names – who abused children with impunity.' He added: 'Two former police officers have raised their concerns of cover-ups. Child protection ­specialists have raised fears that the network of convicted paedophile Peter Righton was wider than at first thought. Others have identified a former cabinet minister who regularly abused young boys. Some have raised mysterious early deaths, disappeared children, suspicious fires, intimidation and threats.' Righton, a former lecturer at the National Institute for Social Work in London and former consultant to the National Children’s Bureau, was convicted in 1992 of importing illegal porn and was fined nine hundred quid. But police never probed his association with high-powered men with links to the Government.

Naughty Nadine Dorries has been thoroughly disciplined by the Conservative Party over her appearance in I'm A Z-List Former Celebrity Desperate To Get My Boat-Race Back On TV ... Please Vote For Me To Stay Here As Long As Possible (I'll Even Eat Worms If You Want). The MP has said that she - not particularly convincingly - that is hoping to use the ITV reality show as 'a platform' to discuss her views on reducing the current twenty four-week time limit for abortions, and will appear on the programme this weekend. Most people appear to believe that the forty grand she'll pocket from ITV is a bit more of an incentive to live in the jungle and eat kangaroo testes. Chief Whip Sir George Young has said that Dorries did not seek his permission to leave the UK for Australia, and has demanded a meeting with her when she returns, reports the Daily Scum Mail. Conservative MPs have criticised Dorries' involvement in the show, which will reportedly see her earning forty thousand smackers. An alleged senior Conservative party 'source' allegedly said: 'She has been suspended from the party until she meets with George Young when she comes back, when she will have to explain herself. The concern is she is not doing her parliamentary duty and serving her constituents.' Chairman of the Mid-Bedfordshire Conservative Association Paul Duckett has also stated that he has been 'trying to track her down. If that is what she is doing we will be taking a very severe view,' he said. 'There is a range of actions open to us, everything from reprimand, de-listing, deselection for the next election.' Another Conservative MP Sarah Wollaston has also criticised Dorries' appearance on the reality show, saying it may damage the image of women in politics. She said: 'I am just dismayed. We want women to be taken seriously. We need to get more women to put themselves up for election. What message does this send out about the job? If we want women to be taken seriously we need them to take the job seriously. If you appear on a programme like I'm a Celebrity, your whole role in that is to make yourself look ridiculous for public entertainment. Did people vote for Nadine to go to Parliament so she could be a minor celebrity or to do a serious job? What I am saying is she has been elected to represent people in Parliament and think there is a point at which you have to decide what you want to be. Do you want to be a celebrity or be taken seriously as an MP?'
Arrested Sun journalists 'are finding themselves caught between a rock and hard place as they contemplate their dilemma while on police bail' according to an article by the Gruniad's Roy Greenslade. Some of them, Greenslade claims, 'would like to help Scotland Yard police who are investigating the alleged paying of public officials but feel constrained from doing so because of the unique situation in which they find themselves.' They say they have refused to answer questions 'because they fear News International might react by refusing to go on paying their wages and also by cutting off the funding for the lawyers hired to act for them.' Two of the arrested Sun journalists, speaking independently, have told Greenslade that they see themselves as being trapped in the middle of a struggle between their employer and the Metropolitan police. The journalist claims that 'they suspect that officers working for Operation Elveden, the team investigating corrupt payments to public officials, believed that the pressure of being under investigation would cause them to provide information that will lead to the arrests of more senior executives.' And, one of the arrested journalists is even convinced that the police are seeking to bring a corporate corruption charge against News International. During questioning by police, both journalists say officers are 'clearly seeking to identify any staff higher up the News International chain of command who were responsible for sanctioning payments to their sources.' But the journalists feel inhibited from giving any such evidence to the police because the company has provided them with lawyers, is funding their legal fees and also continuing to pay their wages. Greenslade alleges that they fear if they speak out they will lose their legal representation and face being fired. 'We are in a Kafkaesque situation,' one of the journalists is quoted as saying. 'We are just pawns in a bigger game.' Twenty-one Sun journalists are currently on police bail and all but three have returned to work. One reporter has been on bail since November last year. Most were detained in January and February, including five senior executives. Two of the bailed journalists say that during their interrogations by police they have opted under legal advice to say 'no comment' to every question. One of them said: 'I do trust my lawyer, and I understand that it's normal practice not to answer questions. On the other hand, I don't see why I should be in this position when other people in the office knew all about the money I paid and why I paid it. It all went through normal channels. There were signed dockets and invoices. There is a paper trail, surely. It was known what I was doing. I couldn't spend that kind of money without it being approved from above.' The second person, speaking separately and unaware of the other source's statement, also said he accepted legal advice not to answer questions. He said he did not believe his lawyer had a conflict of interest and accepted his advice. Nevertheless, he is anxious to give his side of the story and is aware that this would involve the naming of names. According to him, police have not so far made an offer of immunity from prosecution should he speak out. This was confirmed by the other journalist. Hopes that the police might offer a deal were crushed when an officer told him that he did not expect that to happen. He said: 'Consider how weird our situation is. The evidence against us that led to our arrests and possible prosecution was provided by News International through its management and standards committee. Now News International are paying for our defence, and even for psychological counselling if we require it. They are also paying our wages. We are are in an intolerable situation because we are advised to say nothing.' An alleged police 'source' allegedly indicated that the MSC 'changed its terms of reference' after initial attempts were made to establish how high up 'the tree the knowledge of wrongdoing' went. This inquiry appears to have been discontinued. The two arrested journalists are both convinced that News International's former chairman, James Murdoch the small, and his senior executive advisers set up the MSC out of panic. 'They really didn't expect to unleash a monster,' said one of them who believes that billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch, 'would have foreseen the mess' and therefore would have avoided creating the MSC in order to assist the police.

Playboy TV's attempt to get the public to retune their Freeview boxes with an advertising campaign featuring scantily-clad women plastered all over a lorry has been banned. The adult pay-TV channel used images of four women – with two dressed as a policeman and Playboy bunny – on a lorry next to the line 're-tune your Freeview box to get us!' That was a public service announcement. Apparently. The Advertising Standards Authority received a complaint that the images were 'too sexual' to be displayed on a lorry. Playboy TV claimed that it has 'considerable experience' in complying with TV regulations and understood the concept of generally accepted standards. The broadcaster said that the images were comparable to similar adverts allowed to run in the press and that they were no more sexual than 'ads featuring women in lingerie or other states of undress on billboards or at bus-stops.' The ASA agreed but said that they were 'too sexually provocative' for an untargeted medium such as on a lorry that could be seen by anyone. 'We considered that, because the pictures were overtly sexual and could be seen by anyone including children they were likely to cause serious and widespread offence and were irresponsible,' the ASA ruled. 'We concluded that the ads were unsuitable for outdoor display and therefore breached the [advertising] code.' Playboy was fined one hundred and ten grand by Ofcom last November for using female 'presenters' to entice viewers with sexual gestures.

BT has secured more live football rights ahead of the launch of its new channel, after poaching Italian, French, Brazilian and US club football from ESPN. The telecoms giant has secured multi-year rights deals to Serie A in Italy, Ligue 1 in France, Brasileiro in Brazil and Major League Soccer in the USA. Live matches from these leagues will be shown on the new BT Sport channel. BT snapped up the rights from ESPN, after also snatching Premier League football and Premiership Rugby from the broadcaster. Launching in summer 2013, BT Sport will air three hundred and eighty live Serie A matches each season in standard and high definition, along with highlights packages from every match day, weekly preview show Total Italian Football (err ... shouldn't that be Totale Calcio Italiano?) and The Serie A Show review programme. The Ligue 1 rights will include three hundred and eighty live matches per season in SD and HD, a weekly preview show and highlights packages from each match day. Around one hundred live matches from the Brasileiro - the Brazilian top division - will be shown on BT Sport, backed by a weekly highlights programme and TV Globo Soccer Magazine show FootBrazil. The Major League Soccer Championship rights include ninety nine matches per season in SD and HD. BT said that it has bought the live games to bolster its new sports channel, joining the thirty eight live Premier Leagues games it will show each season starting from the 2012-13 season. BT Sport will launch in summer 2013, with the BBC's Jake Humphrey already announced as anchor for the Premier League coverage. BoxNation founder and ex-Sky Sports veteran Simon Green will head up the BT Sport operation, backed by award-winning Sky match director Grant Best, as BT looks to put together a team of top production talent. Discussing the new TV deals, BT Retail chief executive Marc Watson said that as well as enjoying thirty eight games from the Premier League, football fans would be able to follow a bunch of past-it old men like David Beckham and Thierry Henry puffing and wheezing their way through MLS games and witness whether the resurgent hunchbacks of Juventus can withstand the challenge of the Milan giants in Serie A. 'They'll also be able to enjoy the talent on show in the French Ligue 1, where they will see the skills of stars such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva.' Watson said that securing the extra live matches will 'help us in our aim to develop an absolutely cracking sports channel,' offering live action across football, rugby and 'other sports to come. We've hired the best talent behind the camera to bring to viewers the first rate production that they've come to expect from a sports channel in the UK,' he said. BT has said that BT Sport will be available across a number of TV platforms as well as its own BT Vision, although it has not yet confirmed exact details on this.

Organisers have apologised after a firework display went terribly wrong in Edinburgh. A rocket at the Pentland Community Centre display misfired and ricocheted into the remaining fireworks, setting them all off at the same time. The community council said it was 'a freak accident' but it would be reviewing safety procedures. A girl suffered a burn to the side of her face and was taken to Edinburgh's Royal Hospital for Sick Children. However, no-one was seriously injured in the incident at Oxgangs Brae. Footage of the event, which took place on Monday evening, was quickly posted on YouTube. Quite a sight it is, too. It is understood that two thousand smackers worth of fireworks were involved. In a statement, Pentland Community Centre said: 'The management committee of PCC would like to express our sincere apologies for any upset caused following the unfortunate incident at our annual firework display on Monday evening. One of the rockets misfired towards the end of the display and ricocheted into the remaining undetonated fireworks, setting them off all at once. This was a freak accident, and most regrettable, but this is the first incident we have had in ten years of holding this popular community event, and we extend our apologies to everyone who was alarmed.' The statement added that safety protocols would be reviewed. 'But it must be stressed that this is a well-organised event, approved by the City of Edinburgh Council and the emergency services, and it is a fact of life that sometimes unforeseen things happen, despite the best of planning and precaution.'

A man who confessed to a murder whilst apparently on his deathbed has survived and will now serve a life prison sentence after being convicted for the crime. Un lucky. Although not, of course, as unlucky as his victim. James Washington from Nashville, believing he was going to die as he was suffering a heart attack, was said to be clearing his conscience. He confessed to killing Joyce Goodener in July 1995, reports WSMV. However, Washington - who was already in prison for a different crime - survived the health scare and has since been found guilty of Goodener's murder. Prison guard James Tomlinson recalled to the jury: 'He kind of got as best as he could, motioned and said, "I have something to tell you. I have to get something off my conscience and you need to hear this." He said, "I killed somebody. I beat her to death."' Washington tried to retract his statement in court before the verdict was delivered claiming he hadn't known what he was saying.

Which brings us to yer actual Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day. And a proper tale of redemption from Nick Cave's death row.

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