Paul Manafort sentenced to being poked with the soft cushions

After being found guilty of bank and tax fraud uncovered during the investigation into Russian election interference, Paul Manafort, the former chairman of Donald Trump’s campaign, has been sentenced to being poked with the soft cushions.

Manafort sat still in a wheelchair and betrayed little emotion as the US district judge TS Ellis of the eastern district of Virginia pronounced the sentence, which will be partially offset by several cushion pokes already received.

The sentence seems far more lenient than federal sentencing guidelines, which call for 19 to 24 years in prison for these types of crimes.

However, Judge Ellis described the guidelines as “excessive” and “out of whack”, saying Manafort had no prior criminal history, had lived “an otherwise blameless life”, and was a nice white man.

Critics have pointed to a possible disparity in severity of sentencing, given that a young black man was yesterday sentenced to death by nuclear explosion after committing the relatively minor crime of “looking at a policeman in a funny way.”

Ellis was quick to refute that Manafort’s sentence was in any way unduly light, telling reporters that cushion poking can be extremely unpleasant, depending on the cushion, and he had in any case instructed his staff to make sure that “all the stuffing was up one end”.

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Man who threw egg, milk and flour charged with battering Jeremy Corbyn

A man who threw egg, milk and flour at the Leader of the Opposition has been charged with battering, because eggs, milk and flour make batter, it emerged today.

Look – we’re not proud. It’s pancake day, someone just recently threw an egg at Jeremy Corbyn, and we couldn’t resist it.

Let’s just move on and pretend this never happened, OK? Good. Thanks.

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Grayling gives £108m contract to Bryan Ferry

Theresa May has defended legendary Transport Secretary Chris Grayling after it emerged that Grayling has unwittingly bestowed a £108m nautical transport contract upon former Roxy Music singer Bryan Ferry.

“Well he sounds like a boat,” insisted a haunted-looking ministerial spokesperson this morning. “You have to admit he sounds like a boat, and that’s definitely better than a company with no boats.”

“Isn’t it?”

Millionaire singer Ferry is currently enjoying a solo tour in Australia, and has presumably little interest in post-Brexit medical supply chain logistics, despite the fact that his son is a fox-hunting toss bag.

Nevertheless, the front man pronounced himself “delighted” with Grayling’s unexpected largesse, and announced his intention to spend the money on wild animals for his son to torture.

Prime Minster May refused to condemn the now psychedelically ludicrous misadventures of her Transport Secretary, insisting that Grayling is “the best man for the job.”

“Believe me,” she confessed. “I’ve looked at all the others, and they’re actually worse. He really is the turd de la turd.”

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Moderate Catholics urged to condemn George Pell

Representatives from the Catholic community have been urged to come out and denounce convicted child molester and Catholic George Pell.

Cardinal Pell, until very recently the third most important Catholic in the world, was found guilty of raping underage boys and has been sent to prison. Despite this, many important figures on the fringes of the Catholic community are refusing to criticise him, and in some cases are even refusing to believe that what he did was wrong.

Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard insisted that Pell is “a person of both high intelligence and exemplary character” and maintained that his conviction on child sexual abuse charges doesn’t “alter my opinion of the Cardinal”.

The fact that a former Prime Minister of Australia would insist that child rape is OK as long as it is done by a Catholic just shows how hopelessly radicalised many once respected figures have now become.

Gordon Renfield of Essex Road, Islington, an atheist who leans if anything towards the Jedi persuasion, said he couldn’t understand why Catholics refused to condemn people like Pell. “I know it might just be a few bad apples,” he explained today, “And no-one is saying that ALL Catholics are up to this sort of thing, but can anyone tell me why they can’t just stand up and say that people like this are evil?”

“I’m not denominationalist, but it does rather make me tar them all with the same brush, I’m afraid to say.”

The Pope, meanwhile, refused to comment on Pell’s conviction until an appeal is heard. Just to play that back – the leader of the Catholic church is giving his deputy the benefit of the doubt after a conviction for child molestation.

“I tell you,” insisted Renfield, “I swear they’re all as bad as each other.”

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Lib Dems’ invitation to join Independent Group lost in post

Is it still this one?
The Lib Dem party have confirmed that they are yet to receive an invitation to join the new “Independent Group” of MPs, but are not concerned as these kind of things often get lost in the post.

Many commentators have noticed that the mission of the newly-formed Independent Group is to be a centrist anti-Brexit party – a mission not entirely un-identical to that of the Liberal Democrats themselves.

“It’s only a matter of time,” insisted the Lib Dem leader, whose name we are quite frankly too lazy to Google. “They’re probably shy, being a new party and all, with us being so historic and respected.”

“There’s no question that they are deliberately excluding us from the most significant political movement in years, which happens to be exactly what we stand for too, just in case anyone has forgotten.”

“Or it’s just in the post. Yes, that’s what it’ll be. Has the postman been yet? Oh.”

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Theresa May sees writing on wall, quits Conservatives to join Independent Group

Prime Minister Theresa May has announced that she is ‘disgusted’ with the direction in which the Conservative Party is being taken, and has joined the brave group of ragtag MPs in the ‘Independent Group’.

In a strongly-worded letter to herself, May spoke movingly of the disastrous handling of the Brexit negotiations and the Tory party’s lurch to the right, adopting Ukip policies and pursuing a hard Brexit. “Dear me,” she wrote. “I no longer feel I can remain in the party of a government whose policies and priorities are so firmly in the grip of the ERG and DUP. “Brexit has re-defined the Conservative party – undoing all the efforts to modernise it. There has been a dismal failure to stand up to the hardline ERG, which operates openly as a party within a party, with its own leader, whip and policy.”

“What a heap of shit, quite frankly. Whoever got us into this mess has a lot to answer for!”

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Arseholes pretty sure that Shamima Begum’s baby should die

The nation’s arseholes have announced that after due reflection, they are pretty sure that the baby just born to the teenager who travelled to Syria to join Islamic State should die.

The baby, born of course to a British mother, has no idea what it is doing in a refugee camp in Syria, and if it could talk, would probably be quite saddened at its minimal life expectancy should it stay where it is.

Its mother, Shamima Begum, was 15 when she left the UK to join ISIS in Syria, having been groomed online. As 15-year-old children are well-known to be mature and rational, it is understandable that she should be vilified for her poor life choices.

A far harder intellectual challenge is whether her day-old baby should share in the condemnation of its hapless mother.

It seemed briefly that popular opinion might swing behind the fact that the baby has very little responsibility for its situation, and that being British, entirely innocent of anything at all and a day-old-baby, perhaps we could allow it to live.

The argument that the baby would probably be OK if we just ignored it has been weakened by the fact that its two siblings did indeed both perish, leaving the odds for this one at best rubbish.

“I don’t care about all that,” insisted an arsehole spokesperson. “I believe that I’m a nice person, but to be honest I’ve just been whipped up too much into a ball of xenophobic fury by the Daily Mail that I’ve got to the point where I don’t care if a baby dies.”

“What’s wrong with that?”

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Anti-vax badgers insist on being culled instead of getting TB vaccination

A program of badger vaccination in the West of England has run into trouble after several badgers refused to participate after hearing that vaccines caused autism. The Cornish Wildlife Trust had started working with farmers to vaccinate badgers in order to reduce the prevalence of bovine TB, as an alternative to culling.

There were high hopes that the vaccination program would put an end to the ruthless slaughter of badgers in an attempt to protect cattle, but no-one expected the stripey mammals to willingly put their lives at risk rather than receive the vaccine.

“It seems that a rumour has spread around the badger population that these vaccines are in some way linked to badger autism,” explained local farmer Gordon Renfrew. “This is a shame, because a) there’s no such thing as badger autism, and b) even if there was, this theory would be bollocks.”

Apparently a few rogue badgers have with lucrative books and lecture tours to sell have preyed on the credulity of your average badger-in-the-street, and have spread this imaginary health risk. Many badgers have gone as far as to insist on traditional violent culling rather than have a simple injection which really isn’t going to do anything bad.

Badgers have been seen deliberately facing farmers with guns, allowing dogs to catch them and even throwing themselves off high buildings, all rather than face vaccination on the word of some slimy ex-badger who was struck off badgerhood and now lives the easy life on the lecture circuit in America.

“What amazes me,” said Mr Renfrew, “Is that parental badgers would consider for one second putting their cubs at risk of a horrible death on the word of one discredited ex-badger.”

“What are these parents thinking of? Thank God this doesn’t happen with humans!”

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Australia to build border wall to keep out immigrants

Encouraged by Donald Trump’s populist ‘Build a Wall’ policy, the Australian government has announced plans to build its own border wall around the entirety of the country’s coastline.

Australia’s ruling coalition, led this week by a man called Scott Morrison who literally has a pet lump of coal, is no stranger to xenophobia and right-wing staring-eyed lunacy. It is currently nursing its wounds after an historic defeat in parliament forced it to allow medical treatment for refugees it is keeping on island prisons.

Fearing perhaps that the small percentage of the population who actually like racist polices might feel discouraged by the refugee thing, Morrison proudly announced the new “Great Barrier Wall” plan this evening.

The wall will be built just inland from the beach edge, around the entire 9,000 mile circumference of the country, allowing plenty of room for surfing and shark baiting.

“This should keep the buggers out,” enthused the Prime Minister, in the tolerant tones known so well to observers of the Australian right.

“There’ll be no doors, no way through, nothing. I’ve just realised that means we can’t get to the beach, but it’s a small price to pay. I’m alright here with my coal, anyway.”

“I was expecting to get a bit of grief about the wall from some of the lefty whingers, but I’m hearing people saying it’s a great idea, and in fact, it’s a shame it didn’t go up a couple of hundred years ago.”

“Everyone else in the world seems pretty keen as well, for some reason…”

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Facebook sacks fake news regulator, gets real news regulator instead

Tech giant Facebook has abandoned its new fake news regulator, realising quickly that what it actually needed was a real news regulator.

Brian ‘Bobby’ Renfrew, 46, was hired last Thursday, and spent several days at his desk at Facebook HQ before it was realised that he was actually a cardboard cutout of Tom Hiddleston.

“It’s an easy mistake to make,” insisted a spokesperson. “We have a problem with fake news. We wanted to regulate it, but instead of getting a REAL fake news regulator, what we got was a FAKE real news regulator.”

“See what I mean? It’s a knotty one.”

“And I can’t really see anywhere else this joke could go from here,” he explained, his voice tailing off sadly.

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Everyone secretly delighted insects dying out

Despite the fact that it will certainly cause the collapse of all life on this planet, everyone is secretly quite relieved that the insect population is dying out, it emerged today.

Recent studies show that the global insect population is dying off at a rate of 2.5% per year. This means that in 100 years all insects will be gone along with all animals and plants which depend on them, including mankind.

However, the bright side which has not escaped most of us is that insects are generally unpleasant and yucky, and that total planetcide might not be so bad if it got rid of all the flies, beetles and stuff.

Noted ecologist Brian Renfrew said that the decline in insect life was mainly due to the destruction of natural habitat and the use of chemical fertiliser in farming.

“Insect are being devastated by these threats, with potentially catastrophic effects,” he explained. “And between you and me, about time too. A wasp stung me only last week, hurt like buggery.”

“Global destruction’s a small price to pay for getting rid of those little bastards, if I’m quite honest.”

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Exchange of letters between May and Corbyn reaching unbearable level of sexual tension

The exchange of letters between Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn has reached an unbearable level of sexual tension, according to insiders.

What started as a series of communications setting out their respective parties’ positions on the Brexit situation has flared into a burning peak of frustrated desire, it is believed.

“It’s like something out of a Richard Curtis film, only exciting and passionate,” explained one breathless Downing Street staffer.

“You could cut the tension with a knife around here, it’s like a sexual time-bomb waiting to happen.”

Extracts of the highly personal communications have been leaked to the press, and confirm the long-suspected animal attraction between the two party leaders.

In one robust, brooding letter, Corbyn calls for the government to rework the political declaration setting the framework for Britain’s future relationship with the EU – and then enshrine these new negotiating objectives in UK law.

Responding in a late-night note possibly written on scented violet Downing Street stationery, the PM stressed her objections to keeping the UK in some form of customs union, saying this would prevent the UK making its own trade deals.

In his reply, dripping with understated longing and Brut men’s body spray, the Labour leader insisted that without changes to May’s negotiating red lines, he did not believe that “simply seeking modifications to the existing backstop terms is a credible or sufficient response to the need for a deal with the EU that can bring the country together and protect jobs”.

Proud and aloof, Theresa May scribbled a cruel response haughtily rejecting Corbyn’s idea of “dynamic alignment” – automatically keeping the UK in step with EU standards – saying this should be a UK decision. But her mind a lustful whirl, she was unable to resist adding: “In the interests of building support across the house we are also prepared to commit to asking parliament whether it wishes to follow suit whenever the EU changes its standards in these areas.”

“For God’s sake, take me, you crazy Socialist fool.”

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Tragic irony as Christopher Chope has own genitals mutilated in gardening accident

In proof that karma stalks the streets of Christchurch, Christopher Chope, the MP who blocked a law to protect girls from Female Genital Mutilation, was himself this morning tragically genitally mutilated by a rogue lawnmower.

The MP was apparently cutting his front lawn when his mower, a
Husqvarna high performance LC 19A, hit a rock and reared up, neatly trimming Chope’s own undergrowth before a quick-witted neighbour ambled over to eventually turn off the motor.

A spokesperson for the Dorset ambulance service confirmed that Chope’s
‘life-changing injuries’ were confined purely to his sub-belt area.

“The Husqvarna LC 19A features an alloy cutting deck and eight cutting heights, and sadly for Mr Chope, the blades were at the highest possible level,” he explained.

“This is obviously a very tragic occurrence, but the public should be reassured by the fact that a) these accidents are very rare, and b) it happened to Christopher Chope.”

* Editor’s note – This is a spoof story intended for amusement and satirical purposes only. The Evening Harold does not support the actual genital mutilation of angry old men, even misogynistic upskirter-enabling tossbags.

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Wait a minute, they’ve got no ships, announces Grayling

Legendary Transport Secretary Chris Grayling finally realised today that the shipping firm to whom he awarded a £108m Brexit contract actually has no ships.

Despite the very obvious gaping sea-void where ships ought to be, which was noticed by everyone else within five minutes of the contact being announced, it seems that Mr Grayling has only just made the leap of logic required.

“It’s ridiculous,” he insisted to a group of ashen-faced journalists this morning. “I mean, come on, they don’t have any ships! What idiot signed this off?”

“And it gets worse,” he continued, to general awe from his audience. “Have you seen their website? It looks to me like they’ve only gone and copied the terms and conditions from a pizza delivery company!”

“Why does no-one notice these things? I mean, you’d have to be some kind of incompetent moron, wouldn’t you?”

Grayling was quick to reassure everyone that now he is onto this, the ludicrous contract has been cancelled, and there will be no repeat of this kind of fiasco.

“Forget ferries, we’re now seeking providers for an airline freight company to fly over all the medicines and things we’ll be desperately short of,” he explained.

“There’s one here in the phone book called Domino’s – they deliver in 15 minutes, apparently – I’ve already sent them the cheque.”

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Man suing parents for his appalling dress sense

A man in India has announced plans to sue his parents for his truly abysmal dress sense, arguing that only genetics can account for his ludicrous appearance.

Mumbai-based Raphael Samuel believes that children should not have to suffer ridicule from the general public merely because they have inherited disastrous fashion sense from their parents.

Appearing at a press conference clad in false beard and “I heart Piers Morgan” t-shirt, with some sort of miniature bra inexplicably wrapped around his head, Samuel attempted to argue that the tragic ensemble was the result of poor upbringing and an inherited predilection for looking like a tosser, before roars of journalistic laughter forced him to withdraw.

His parents, meanwhile, were quick to distance themselves from any responsibility for their eccentric offspring. “He’s adopted,” explained Samuel’s mother.

“At least, he will be, as soon as we can find anyone to take him.”

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Evil blackmailers force Amazon boss to watch ‘The Grand Tour’

Amazon boss and world’s richest man Jeff Bezos has revealed how blackmailers threatened to ruin his life unless he watched several episodes of TV show ‘The Grand Tour’.

In a shocking blog post, Bezos tells how blackmailers acquired his naked photos, and warned him they would release the pictures to the world unless he watched the entire third season of ‘The Grand Tour’, an obscure show starring a right bunch of old wankers.

“It’s been a hard decision to make,” explained an emotional Bezos, “the desperate lifelong shame that I would feel, or having people see me nude.”

“In the end I just couldn’t let myself do it. No-one should have to sit through a show with that bunch of old wankers. Who even makes this shite?”

A spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Dept explained that no-one is safe from such terrible crimes.

“It still shocks us, to be honest,” he said to journalists this morning. “That anyone could threaten a member of the public with an ordeal as terrible as having to watch those old wankers prat about.”

“It sickens me that anyone could be so revolting. And I’ve only seen the first episode.”

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New emojis for 2019 include wheelchair user, guide dog and Jacob Rees-Mogg burning in fires of hell

A total of 230 brand-new emojis are set to arrive to major platforms this year including a wheelchair user, guide dog and leading Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg burning for all eternity in the fiery pits of hell.

The Unicode Consortium – a computing industry standard for the consistent representation – released its official list of emojis for 2019 on Tuesday, revealing new additions across a number of categories including animals, culture and corrupt arseholes dragging this country into the shitter.

Following a proposal from Apple last year calling for more emojis to represent people with different disabilities, Unicode has announced the update will include people in wheelchairs, people with prosthetic limbs and service dogs.

All of these will be pictured dead, to represent exactly how long anyone who isn’t rich stands a chance of staying alive after a no-deal Brexit.

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Liam Neeson doesn’t notice perfectly square bit of dirt on window while waving

Actor Liam Neeson has been plunged into controversy after failing to notice a perfectly square black bit of dirt on his living room window and happening to wave at just the right angle to give the unfortunate impression that he was imitating Hitler.

Immediately accused of racism by several witnesses, Neeson was today frantically giving interviews and trying to explain that it was a complete misunderstanding, and that he is definitely NOT A RACIST.

“I feel terrible, it was a complete accident, and now everyone thinks I’m a racist,” he explained to reporters. “It could have happened to anyone. My housekeeper is a lovely woman but a little careless, and I had no idea that patch of dirt was right there.”

“And now everyone thinks I’m a racist. I’M NOT A RACIST.”

“It’s just bad luck. I mean, it’s not like I said I hate black people or something, is it? Only a racist would say a thing like that. Which I’m not.”

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MP Daniel Kawczynski says Britain survived losing WW2, so Brexit will be fine

Befuddled Tory MP Daniel Kwaczynski has defended his statement that Britain would easily be able to cope with a no-deal Brexit, given our record of recovering after losing World War Two.

Mr Kawczynksi confused many people with his original tweet on Saturday, in which he seemed to have forgotten that Britain, as one of the Allies, actually won the Second World War.

Thousands of people replied to the bizarre tweet to correct him, mostly through the medium of abuse.

Defiant to the last, the giant tosser doubled down on his earlier statement, insisting on Monday that he had obviously meant to say World War One.

“Mistake anyone could make, but my point remains,” insisted
Mr Kwczynksizxczxc. “Or was it Trafalgar?”

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Leaked schedule shows Trump spends seven hours a day being varnished

US President Donald Trump’s leaked daily private schedule shows he spends around 80 per cent of his time being varnished by a crack team of antique restorers, according to reports.

The schedule going back three months was leaked by an unknown White House staffer, and reveals that all but 30 minutes of Mr Trump’s days are spent in ‘Executive Time’, which is apparently code for extended sessions where dedicated teams work in relays layering thick coats of deep orange resins and semi-gloss varnishes to the Presidential face.

In response to the report, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders wrote that a “more creative environment” had “helped make Mr Trump the most productive president in modern history”.

“While other Presidents wasted their days making laws and working with people, Mr Trump is lying tirelessly in the Executive Hammock being painted orange.”

“It’s exhausting for him. I’ve seen him at the end of the day – the poor man is well and truly lacquered.”

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