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Mobs, Messiahs, and Markets by Lila Rajiva, Will Bonner

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Extraordinary Popular Headlines

We turn our inquiry now to one of the principal organs of mob sentiment—the press. In London, expecially, the newspapers are robust and shameless. We recall the greatest headline ever written in the tabloid press, after a minor figure in the Tory Party, Boris Johnson, was caught in a lurid peccadillo. The headline—over a photo of the woman—ran:

“Bonking Boris Made Me Pregnant”

Bonking Boris is still around. Still around, too, are the newspaper headlines that shout the latest news as though they were announcing the next match at a World Wide Wrasslin’ match. We look through the newspaper headlines at random to share them with you:

“NHS [National Health System] Cuts Put Your Children in Danger,” says the front page of the Daily Express.

“Why, why, why does Sir [Sex Bomb] Tom [Jones] have darker hair than his son?” readers apparently want to know on page 3.

Turn the page—and read about the “Bully chef [who] ran around the kitchen in his underpants.” Accompanying the headline is not only a photo of the chef with his pants on, but the waitress who got £124,000 in a sexual harassment settlement.

The Sun, meanwhile, takes the high road, with its lead:

“No Peace: Child killers Ian Huntley and Roy Whiting were quizzed in jail yesterday after sick “sorry” notes and roses were left on their victims’ graves. The stunt brought new torment to the families. …”

We turn the page and … whoa! Nicola, 22, from Croydon, seems to have lost her shirt—and her mind. She ...

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