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What’s the German for Schadenfreude?

You’d need a heart of stone not to laugh at the demise of Max Clifford. The git is goin’ dahn for 8 counts of sexual assault.

Millionaire publicist manipulated women and girls into performing sex acts with promises he would introduce them to showbiz stars.

Clifford, 71, was convicted following a six-week trial that exposed the “terrible, festering secret” that he was a paedophile who bullied and manipulated teenage girls into performing sex acts.

Apparently he accused his accusers of being “fantasists only in it for the money”. That’s rich coming from you Max! His defence basically consisted of his QC claiming things like, “It was a different age…” and accused the police of a witch hunt* and of people taking a “prurient interest in his sex-life”. Oh, the irony! The number of careers and lives he has wrecked over decades by doing just that…

The publicist left the courtroom without speaking to the press, hurrying into a private room with his legal team as his supporters – including several employees – waited outside, some in tears.

Once outside, Clifford refused to make a statement. “I’ve been told by my lawyers to say nothing at all.

Well, that’ll be a first! Max Clifford lost for words. Perhaps almost as much as the chokey he receives that is almost as devastating to this vile and utterly egotistical man. And it will (I sincerely hope) be a long-time in chokey. All the girls and women were young and vulnerable and one was 15. They are considering a case where the jury was hung and that involved a 14 year old girl. There is also an accusation of of abusing a 14 year old but the jury was hung on that and they are considering what to do about that. And also the accusation that he abused a 12 year old in a Jacuzzi in Spain but for that he couldn’t be prosecuted.

Clifford destroyed lives and careers at whim. He is utterly vile. One only need to look at the Stuart Lubbock case or David Mellor to see his amorality and hypocrisy. And it is good he finally got his comeuppance.

Let Clifford rot in Hell.

Sometimes people do get their righteous comeuppance.

*There may be an element of truth in that as Operation Yewtree had yet to secure a conviction.


  1. RAB says:

    Talk about karma. I believe that the perceived character of the defendant Max Clifford, which unless you live on another planet, is generally known as … A smug, arrogant, two faced chancer and blatent liar, who will make any old crap up in defence of his celebrety clients and to make himself a fortune, has had a lot to do with the verdict.

    Having said that, I haven’t followed the case or heard the evidence, but the Jury did, and I have said before, I have both summoned juries in my job as an officer of the Crown Court, and sat on one when my exemption ended. I have great faith in 12 good men/women and true to get to the truth. They took a long time in deliberating on this case. I believe they have reached the right verdict.

  2. John Galt says:

    “all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword” – Matthew 26:52

    Word of the day:

    Glaukenstucken: Feeling guilty for having felt schadenfreude

  3. Philip Scott Thomas says:

    Oddly enough (or perhaps not) I was discussing this with a colleague yesterday. I said pretty much the same. I was trying to remember Mellor’s surname and could get only as far as ‘David something, former Conservative minister, Chelsea strip’. My colleague said, ‘Oh, you mean David Mellor, the football commentator’.

    That response, as I pointed out to him, more or less proved my point. The Chelsea strip bit never happened. Clifford himself, some years ago on R4, quite happily admitted that he’d made that bit up in order to maximize his client’s fees from the tabloids. He had no problem with that. Yet all these years later a man’s reputation is still sullied by what was, in any jurisdiction, a barefaced lie.

    My colleague then asked whether Clifford wasn’t behind the “Freddie Starr ate my hamster” headline. A bit of googling showed that he was. Yep, that’s another reputation he has blighted.

    In a libertarian society, one that depends on contracts and agreements, a man’s most precious possession is his reputation. And yet Clifford knowingly set out to destroy that reputation for any number of people.

    I know it’s neither charitable nor kind, but frankly, I don’t give a damn: I hope he rots in prison. What’s more, I hope he is buggered six ways to Sunday by his fellow inmates, in the same way he buggered innocent men.

  4. Mr Ed says:

    I am disturbed by gloating over this man’s conviction. I have not heard all the evidence, I have not had the benefit of knowing the witnesses, as a jury used to before arbitrary notions of procedural fairness were imposed on trials and when an oath meant something to the oath taker. I would ask all to recall the speech of Sir Thomas More in the film A Man For All Seasons, ‘I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for mine own safety’s sake.’

    I had a number of concerns about the trial, the lapse of time, the apparent relevance of the accused promises to being fame and riches to his victims to founding an assault conviction, Mr Clifford was unknown until the Mellor scandal, these cases go back some 47 years, when he was unknown. The worst thing that you could ever say about David Mellor is ‘That man is David Mellor’. Yes he was ridiculed due to Clifford, but he was a Conservative Wet, an uglier, younger version of John Major in his politics, and he did betray his wife. That Clifford helped to whip up the press against Major to pave the way for Blair is his greatest crime in his work, but Major might not have differed much from Blair.

    As a morality tale, if you go round making up lies about people, you cannot complain of you are not believed. Making up lies for profit is irrelevant, do not object to profit, it is a positive goal. Object to lies and fraud.

    Only one aspect of the evidence troubles me, the letter reportedly found in the defendant’s bedroom from one of his accusers. That was to me powerful corroboration, if true.

    However much I loathe the man, I would not wish that he stood unjustly convicted.

    When the Devil turns round on you, where will you hide?

  5. NickM says:

    I hide behind the truth Mr Ed. I have done questionable things Mr Ed. I once set a fridge on fire in South Manchester but that, as they say, is another story…

    And, yeah, there is a repetition here but my router is effed and as to the CCinZ one… The Koalas had best get biting out the cogs for the new difference engine. Sorry.

  6. John Galt says:

    Fair enough Mr. Ed and I agree with you that some parts of the recent celebrity trials go back too far (due to a lack of statute of limitations) and contains too much “he said, she said” evidence.

    Excluding Stuart Hall, who was badly advised to cop a plea in my opinion, the jurors in ALL of these cases have considered the evidence and agreed similarly (too long ago, impossible to defend, contradictory testimony), which is why this is pretty much the only case to achieve a conviction.

    The ‘Yewtree’ Victims by Anna Raccoon

    In the end all of these cases have come down to who the jury believes, the defendants or the claimants. So Max Clifford’s day job was never going to stand him in good stead as he has recognized form as a liar and a trader in lies and scandal. Perhaps the jury system would always have some level of bias because of that, but it is the system we have in place.

    I do feel Schadenfreude as I feel there is a certain karmic resonance in the UK’s biggest sex scandal merchant being caught up in a sex scandal of his own. There is a certain irony in that.

    Whether he actually committed the acts he is accused of, I can’t say as I wasn’t there. The jury have heard both sides of the argument and in their view he has “beyond all reasonable doubt”, committed 8 of the 11 crimes with which he has been charged. He still has avenues of appeal which he can (and presumably will) pursue.

    In the absence of a statute of limitations or a working time-viewer he’s had a fair crack of the judicial whip, I can’t see how any fairer trial could have been achieved.

    Them’s the breaks.

  7. Mr Ed says:

    Indeed JG, but I find that I must force myself not to gloat, as I loathe the defendant and all his works, whether symptom or cause of the state of the UK. I fear that the convictions are gateways to civil suits and monetary recompense, and oddly in cases like Savile, the English 6 year limitation rule* in civil cases seems to go out the window in these situations.

    * The Limitation Act 1980 has some narrow exceptions in these cases.

  8. John Galt says:

    I wouldn’t say I’m gloating at his demise, so perhaps schadenfreude is an inappropriate term, perhaps a good old-fashioned English word is more appropriate…


    1.a punishment or fate that someone deserves.
    “he got his comeuppance in the end”
    synonyms: just deserts, deserved fate, due, due reward, just punishment, retribution, requital;

  9. NickM says:

    I’m sure I used “comeuppance” in one of my drafts lost in the ether between this dodgy router and whatever Cats uses..I did. I asked my wife for the sp. I was thinking all too technical when all I really meant to say was, “What goes around comes around”. I wanted something more Greek. Heh ho! The fucker is still off to jail and if he ever gets out he’ll have an arsehole like Dumbledore’s sleeve.

    Mr Ed, as to limitations. Interesting points but it is late here and I must sleep. More later.

  10. RAB says:

    I don’t feel comfortable with gloating either Mr Ed, but like has been said the Jury, after much deliberation, found him guilty, and I trust juries, having spent 12 years observing them and their patient deliberations.

    Besides Max has done much that is morally worse, like destroying reputations, that PST described, but which arn’t actually crimes and for which he can’t be brought to book, and laughed all the way to the bank. Always remember that Al Capone was only convicted of tax evasion, when we all know he did much much worse than that.

    So comeuppance is cool with me.

  11. John Galt says:

    Nope ’tis there at the end of your OP Nick – must have flicked a switch subconsciously.

    Sometimes people do get their righteous comeuppance.

    The Greek is I believe “δίκαιη τιμωρία”, literally “Just Deserts”.

  12. Mr Ed says:

    ‘And also the accusation that he abused a 12 year old in a Jacuzzi in Spain but for that he couldn’t be prosecuted.’


    Are you suggesting that it is a bad thing that he could not be prosecuted for something that was not a crime even if it occurred?

    If you are, then you do not wish for the Rule of Law. And if so, then the Left have got you just where they want you for now, on their side side without even knowing it.

    ‘All the girls and women were young and vulnerable and one was 15.’

    Only in one case would consent be void by statutory presumption. In other cases it may not have been given.

    So Nick, should a previous amour of yours decides some 20 or so years on that she was manipulated by you and asks the Police to arrest and prosecute you, I take it that you would have no complaint?

    If not, I would struggling to reconcile your position with what I understand this blog to be about.

  13. NickM says:

    Mr Ed,
    No, I am not. Having daft sexual relations is not a criminal issue. Being sexually assaulted is. The fact that Clifford fairly clearly used his swing to obtain that does qualify. That is not the main point but it certainly gave him an edge.

    “So Nick, should a previous amour of yours decides some 20 or so years on that she was manipulated by you and asks the Police to arrest and prosecute you, I take it that you would have no complaint?”

    Utterly irrelevant. I have never done the things Clifford did. I’m happily prepared to accept that I may have not been the best bf to various gfs (and vice versa) but that is kinda what dating is about and like how it differs from say, marriage. I never forced a naive girl to give me a hand-job for a spurious shot at stardom. I have also never had sexual relations with anyone under 19.

    “Only in one case would consent be void by statutory presumption.” Isn’t that enough? On it’s own? I despise US style statutory rape laws and I (and thankfully the CPS concur) there is no point in prosecuting a 17 year old for consensual sex with a 15 year old but they do take into account the age gap. A 40 year old shagging a 15 year old is a different issue.

    Finally, what on this goodly Earth does this have to do with the “left”?

    Even more finally, I’d like to point out this was not exactly the post I wished to put up but with my laptop up the junction it’s what you got. .

  14. Lynne at Counting Cats says:

    What’s the Irish for schadenfreude? Gerry Adams dobbed in post mortem (not before Scammelling time. eh Boston College?) by one of his own. Shame McGuinness didn’t get a mention too.

  15. Single Acts of Tyranny says:

    In the distant past, I may have represented to certain young ladies that I was interested in a long term, serious relationship, when in fact, my interest did not extend beyond the immediate. I would not fancy defending my (legal) conduct in court. For example “so Mr SAoT, what did you say to Sandra on the night of November 13th, 1984 before having sex with her?”


    I can’t in all truth, remember the name of every young lady from my (limited) past, let alone even the location of the first coital act with nearly all of ‘em.

    And eight years for persuading a dumb girl to give you a hand job? This is the establishment sending a message to those who would fuck with it, clear and simple. If this was a nobody, the case would never have come to court and the sentence would be nothing like this. If he does even half the term, he probably dies in jail. All this for a 71 year old man who is clearly only a threat to adulterous, creepy, lying politicians.

    Contributors may not have liked him, but politicians have reason to cheer tonight, not you.

  16. John Galt says:

    In the distant past, I may have represented to certain young ladies that I was interested in a long term, serious relationship, when in fact, my interest did not extend beyond the immediate.

    You are Charles Francis “Charlie” Harper and I claim my $5 :-)

  17. NickM says:

    Well, nobody really goes for a “long-term serious relationship” because those just happen. They start to happen when you pick up the phone the third time. But every relationship tends to start with a snog behind the bike sheds so to speak. From my experience.

  18. Lynne at Counting Cats says:

    Mine started with a speeding ticket…


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