Wednesday 21 February 2018

Michael O'Doherty: Vogue's support of Kim might be considered an attempt at getting publicity - but it's about empowerment

Kim Kardashian and Emily Ratajkowski's infamous selfie and Vogue Williams (inset)
Kim Kardashian and Emily Ratajkowski's infamous selfie and Vogue Williams (inset)
Emily Ratajkowski and Kim Kardashian teamed up for this topless selfie to 'empower women'
NEW AGENDA: Dee Forbes, the Irishwoman who is currently head of the Discovery Channel in Europe, has been appointed the next Director General of RTÉ
Vogue Williams wears Lidl's Esmara Push Up Bra, €5.99 and Lace Thong, €4.99. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Vogue Williams attending the Gala screening of the Game of Thrones episode 'Hardhome'' at the Empire Cinema in Leicester Square, London. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire
Michael O'Doherty

Michael O'Doherty

Vogue Williams has come out in support of Kim Kardashian, who had been criticised for posting a naked selfie.

To the untrained eye, such an act might have been considered to be just another desperate attempt at generating publicity. However, Vogue revealed it is all about female empowerment.

“In an age where women all over the world are fighting for equality and choice should we not all have each other’s backs?” wrote Vogue in her newspaper column.

I’m glad this has been cleared up, because I always wondered what the likes of Emmeline Pankhurst, Simone De Beauvoir, and Germaine Greer were fighting for all these years.

But, thanks to Vogue, I now know. It’s the right to flash your bits for the whole world to see.

Lidl Esmara Valentines 8.jpg
Vogue Williams wears Lidl's Esmara Push Up Bra, €5.99 and Lace Thong, €4.99. Picture: Brian McEvoy

No more brown-nosing at RTE as staff discover that silence can be golden

NEW AGENDA: Dee Forbes, the Irishwoman who is currently head of the Discovery Channel in Europe, has been appointed the next Director General of RTÉ

Not much is known about Dee Forbes, who was appointed as RTE’s new Director General last week. The former head of the Discovery Channel in Europe had not been mentioned in the list of favourites to land the plum job. Many had tipped RTE’s deputy director general and head of news, Kevin Bakhurst, to get the position.

What is known, however, is that her appointment hasn’t been greeted with the same public love-in that greeted Bakhurst’s appointment three-and-a-half years ago. At that time, RTE staff were falling over each other to publicly welcome their boss on Twitter.

DJ Rick O’Shea tweeted: “Best of luck with the new job, Sir.” News correspondent Richard Dowling showed his gushing side – and revealed a lack of acquaintance with basic grammar – by chipping in with: “You’re probably sick of tweets about you’re move, but ... welcome to RTE!!”

Most stomach-churningly of all, former Prime Time presenter Mark Little smarmed: “Smart guy. Smart choice.”

This time out, however, there was deafening silence – other than tweets from weather presenter Nuala Carey and Dustin the Turkey. So what does all this mean?

Well, an RTE source suggested that it may be because Dee was unfamiliar in Irish media circles.

A newspaper also hinted that maybe Bakhurst himself thought he had the job and will find it awkward to work underneath someone who has beaten him to it, so his loyal staff decided not to show too much love towards Forbes lest Kevin might be a tad miffed.

There is, of course, one other possibility.

Maybe RTE staff have realised that public brown-nosing, sycophantic epistles to their new boss are a tad unbecoming for well-paid adults in responsible jobs?

You’d never know ...

Michaella's drug smuggling looks like it's going to pay off for her after all

Copy of Michaella.jpg
Michaella McCollum Connolly during an interview with RTE

I Swapped Cocaine for God.” Even among the litany of nauseating, self-pitying comments that have spewed forth within a few hours of Michaella McCollum’s release from a Peruvian prison, that headline  – which adorned the front page of one Sunday newspaper – really stood out.

“Michaella is reading a Bible that I had bought her. She’s really come to the Lord seriously,” said Archbishop Sean Walsh, the priest with whom she will live in Peru as part of her release conditions.

Michaella was also given airtime by RTE last night, in which she reminded everyone who was the victim in all this.

“I’ve forgotten the things that everybody takes for granted in this life,” she said of her time in jail. “Seeing the sun, seeing the moon and the stars ... ”

Doesn’t your heart bleed for the poor, misguided northern lassie? Well, now that you ask...

Let’s be clear about one thing. Michaella has confessed to the stupidity of her actions not because of an exposure to the effects of drug dealing or some blinding revelation that she was part of an industry that wreaks misery on countless people worldwide. She has repented because she was caught.

If Michaella and her equally idiotic partner-in-crime Melissa Reid hadn’t been picked up, do you think they’d be racked with guilt over their actions? Or do you think that they’d still be sitting on a beach in southern Spain, considering whether or not to do it again for a quick buck?

Sure, Michaella acknowledged that: “I could have caused a lot of harm to people.”

A cynic, however, might suggest that Michaella’s remorse is to do with keeping an eye on the long term.

Literary agent Vanessa Fox O’Loughlin said Michaella had “an incredible story to tell” that “could be of huge interest to the publishing industry”.

In a newspaper interview yesterday – apparently unperturbed by the moral dubiousness of hyping up the career prospects of someone caught smuggling €1.8m of cocaine – Ms O’Loughlin said “if it sold well, she could potentially sell the movie rights. It’s impossible to say what that might mean in financial terms”.

Well let me save Vanessa the trouble of putting a figure on it, by pointing out the ultimate irony of this tawdry story. In all likelihood, Michaella is going to be rewarded for her drug-dealing exploits with sums far greater than were ever on offer from the dealers who employed her in the first place.

Archbishop Walsh hit the nail on the head when he alluded to the fact that “maybe one day she’ll be inspired to write up her personal testimony of what happened and what went wrong, and how the Lord helped her pick up the pieces of her life”. In return for a big, fat advance and movie rights ...

So, if and when Michaella sells her story, and it gets made into a movie, the Irish public should show their disapproval in the only way possible. Don’t buy the book, and don’t watch the movie.


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