Boycott the Daily Mail - Call for Inquiry into owner, Jonathon Harmsworth for tax evasion!
Boycott the Daily Mail - Call for Inquiry into owner, Jonathon Harmsworth for tax evasion!
Why this petition matters
The Daily Mail is owned by billionaire, Jonathan Harmsworth (DMGT Media), 4th Viscount Rothermere, great-grandson of it's founder, Harold Sidney Harmsworth who was close friends with Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler.
Just as Harold Harmsworth aka 1st Viscount Rothermere, used the Daily Mail to condition its readers with fascist and antisemitic articles throughout the 1930s, Jonathon Harmsworth uses his Daily Mail as an instrument of lies and propaganda to vilify and propagate fear of immigrants and ridicule any prime ministerial candidate, public figure and citizen who does not agree with his personal and political agenda! While at the same time he promulgates parliamentary candidates and public figures who share his personal, racist, homophobic, misogynist, fascist and antisemitic ideology.
In 2017 Wikipedia editors said they will no longer accept links to Daily Mail stories to support citations because it is too unreliable. A fiery debate on its suitability as a source ended with a consensus view that the Mail, and Mail Online, were "generally unreliable" and their use "is to be generally prohibited, especially when other more reliable sources exist". The statement added: "The general themes of the support votes centred on the Daily Mail's reputation for poor fact checking, sensationalism, and flat-out fabrication."
Another underlying reason for Harmsworth's actions is to protect his "non-dom" tax exempt/concession status. Viscount Rothermere, who inherited control of DMGT Inc via a Jersey Trust and an offshore entity registered in Bermuda, acquired France as his "domicile of birth" upon his birth, as his father acquired a French "domicile of choice" by becoming a tax exile in Paris.
Jonathan Harmsworth was a strong supporter of former Conservative leader David Cameron throughout the latter's political career. In January 2017, BBC's Newsnight programme revealed the former Prime Minister had asked Viscount Rothermere to sack Daily Mail's editor Paul Dacre in the run-up to the Brexit vote and Harmsworth carried out Cameron's wishes and replaced Dacre with present, Daily Mail editor, Geordie Grieg in September 2018.
The present Daily Mail seems to be a case of history repeating itself. Following the 1930 German federal election, in which the Nazis won 107 out of 577 seats, (1st Viscount) Rothermere wrote in the Mail that Hitler's party "represents the birth of Germany as a nation." This was at a time when Hitler had made clear his hatred of Jews and belief in racial supremacy in his book Mein Kampf.
In 1931 Conservative Leader Stanley Baldwin said the Daily Mail was the "engine of propaganda for the constantly changing policies, desires, personal wishes, personal likes and personal dislikes of two men.” (referring to Hitler and Harmsworth). He added famously: “What the proprietorship of these papers is aiming at is power, but power without responsibility, the prerogative of the harlot throughout the ages."
This statement pertaining to the Daily Mail remains relevant today! Even following the Leveson Inquiry nothing much has changed, especially regarding laws of the Data Protection Act, 2018. Just recently, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex filed suit against the Daily Mail's parent company, Rothermere's, DMGT Media after the tabloid published a private letter written by Meghan Markle earlier this year. Prince Harry also penned a scathing statement against the British tabloids, namely the Daily Mail and Rupert Murdoch's, the Sun, for a "ruthless campaign" against his wife.
A similar ruthless campaign is also being waged against London businessman, James Stunt, former husband of Petra Ecclestone, daughter of former Formula 1 billionaire, Bernie Ecclestone. Since their divorce in 2017, the Daily Mail (and The Sun) have continued to malign, and defame him after having his assets frozen claiming he had made his fortune through unlawful means. After eighteen months of investigation a judge vacated the restraining order, saying that indeed his wealth and assets were acquired strictly through his many business ventures including shipping and gold bullion investments. Just recently as Mr Stunt was preparing to sue the Daily Mail (and the Sun), Bernie Ecclestone and Vicount Rothermere again attacked James Stunt, this time by claiming that his large collection of art were forgeries, in particular a Monet painting that he was auctioning with part proceeds going to a well known children's charity!
The Daily Mail throughout the 1930s was rewarded with exclusive access to the Hitler movement, publishing numerous articles singing the praises of Nazism, including several exclusive interviews with Adolf Hitler. In March 1933, Hitler's party won 288 seats and 44 per cent of the vote.
Daily Mail owner Harold Harmsworth - 1st Viscount Rothermere believed the spread of Communism was a greater threat to Britain than the Nazis and felt passionately that a strong Germany under Hitler was necessary to form a “bulwark against Bolshevism” and continued to run articles furthering his personal beliefs.
Hitler was appointed chancellor on 30 January 1933. On 27 February President, Paul Von Hindenburg paved the way to dictatorship, war, and Nazi rule by issuing the Reichstag Fire Decree which nullified civil liberties and gave Chancellor Hitler nearly dictatorial powers. Hitler succeeded Hindenburg as head of state upon his death in 1934. Shortly after he abolished the office entirely and replaced it with the new position of Führer und Reichskanzler. “Herr Hitler has won his majority cleverly,” the Daily Mail wrote in an editorial welcoming the result of the March 1933 election in Germany. “If he uses it prudently and peacefully, no one here will shed any tears over the disappearance of German democracy.”
1st Vicount Rothermere and the Mail were also editorially sympathetic to Oswald Mosley and the British Union of Fascists. Rothermere wrote an article titled "Hurrah for the Blackshirts" published in the Daily Mail on 15 January 1934, praising Mosley for his "sound, commonsense, Conservative doctrine" and pointing out that: "Young men may join the British Union of Fascists by writing to the Headquarters, King's Road, Chelsea, London, S.W."
The Spectator condemned Rothermere's article commenting that, "... the Blackshirts, like the Daily Mail, appeal to people unaccustomed to thinking. The average Daily Mail reader is a potential Blackshirt ready made. When Lord Rothermere tells his clientele to go and join the Fascists some of them pretty certainly will."
Today's Daily Mail represents the past repeating itself, with 4th Viscount Rothermere at the helm, spruiking xenophobic political candidates, by singing their praises while slandering the opposition. Today prime ministerial candidates seek out private meetings with Rothermere and Rupert Murdoch with hopes that their newspapers will assist in building public support for a successful election into power.
In August 2016, the Daily Mail began a partnership with The People's Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party. This partnership included publishing articles in the MailOnline produced by The People's Daily. The agreement appeared to observers to give the paper an edge in publishing news stories sourced out of China, but it also led to questions of censorship regarding politically sensitive topics. In November 2016, Lego ended a series of promotions in the paper which had run for years, following a campaign from the group 'Stop Funding Hate', who were unhappy with the Mail's coverage of migrant issues and the EU referendum.
Make no mistake, Jonathan Harmsworth is the captain of his trashy tabloids, (not his editors, as he insists) which subtly peddle his personal political candidates, hatred of Jews and homosexuals, misogyny and fascist ideology (combined with tabloid fluff) both in print and online, in over 40 countries throughout the world; even though he told Lord Justice Leveson on oath, he does not interfere with the editorial policies of his papers! The Daily Mail, Vicount Rothermere claims, "represent the values of middle England"! Nothing could be further from the truth! In fact he uses that notorious untruth in the very declaration of the Daily Mail!
Also many readers are probably not aware of the close friendship and business interests that Vicount Rothermere shares with former, Formula 1 owner, Bernie Ecclestone. In a Times interview published on 4 July 2009, Ecclestone said "terrible to say this I suppose, but apart from the fact that Hitler got taken away and persuaded to do things that I have no idea whether he wanted to do or not, he was – in the way that he could command a lot of people – able to get things done." According to Ecclestone: "If you have a look at a democracy it hasn't done a lot of good for many countries — including this one," in reference to the United Kingdom. He also said that his friend of 40 years Max Mosley, the son of British fascist leader Oswald Mosley, "would do a super job" as Prime Minister and added "I don't think his background would be a problem."
As a British citizen I find this reprehensible that billionaire, Jonathan Harmsworth aka Vicount Rothermere, the great-grandson of the owner of the world's only newspaper that stayed loyal to Adolf Hitler, even after his death, is the second biggest owner of British national newspapers with a portfolio including the Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday and Metro.
I am calling for a boycott of all DMGT owned media, starting with the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday! I am also calling for an independent inquiry into the extremely dubious entity of shell companies and family trusts that hide under the DMGT Media tax concession umbrella!
References: Wikipedia, Newsweek, 'Reporting on Hitler: Rothay Reynolds and the British Press in Nazi Germany,' Author: Will Wainewright (Biteback, 2017) BBC News, CBS News, Independent.co.uk
I hope you will join me in boycotting Vicount Rothermere's (Jonathan Harmsworth) Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, to stop funding a tax evading billionaire and his trashy, fear and hate mongering tabloids.