The quote, from Matthew Freud, son in law of Rupert Murdoch:

Freud told the New York Times he was “ashamed and sickened by Roger Ailes’s horrendous and sustained disregard of the journalistic standards that News Corporation, its founder and every other global media business aspires to”.

Though Murdoch does not agree, apparently.

The most surprising fact comes from Roy Hattersley, who had the bruising experience of negotiating against Icelanders in 1975-6:

There are Viking tombstones in the Great Wall of China. Reasonable men would not have sailed open boats to the other side of the world.

Really?  How the **** did they get that far? I want more proof. Though having read this hugely entertaining piece by Michael Lewis about Iceland in Vanity Fair, I am not all that surprised about their unreasonableness.   They barge you, a lot.

Most surprising instance of a policy U-turn: Tories thinking of modifying marriage proposals.  But if this is about kids, not marriage, why not go after with child-centred benefits?

The least surprising academic finding is this: bank lending shocks are important for economic fluctuations:

We find that a negative bank lending shock causes output to contract. The signi cance of bank lending shocks seems evident as they explain a substantial share of output gap variability. This suggests that the banking sector is an important source of shocks.

Well, it may seem obvious.  But some die-hards like Tim Congdon still maintain that to give a fig about bank lending is a gross mistake – ‘creditism’.   I disagree.

The least surprising list is this long one of people who dismissed the US housing boom.


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