Tom Hanks calls for the Onion to be awarded Pulitzer

The Hollywood actor adds his name to the growing campaign for the <em>Onion</em> to be awarded a Pul

It is a quirk of history that "America's Finest News Source" has yet to win America's finest journalism prize. Somehow in 2011, the satirical website the Onion is still without the Pulitzer it so richly deserves. A pressure group has set out to right this ancient wrong. Americans for Fairness in Awarding Journalism Prizes. A statement on the group's website said: "It's time for the Pulitzer Board to stop the bias, stop the ignorance, and stop the neglect."

The group have enlisted A-list supporters in their quest for the Onion to get its deserved Pulitzer. Tom Hanks today offered his backing for the campaign to give the Onion a Pulitzer prize. Here is his statement in full:

"As an artist with a taste for excellence I find it odd - truly odd - that the Onion has yet to be honoured by whoever it is that awards the prize. In fact it makes me angry. I feel an intense physical malice towards whoever is in this mysterious cabal of power-brokers and so-called taste makers who gather annually in what must be some all-night drunken bacchanalia slash piñata party, the result of which is the awarding of the prized Pulitzer. If our Onion does not receive this year's P2, I will search you down - each and every one of you who is responsible for this great injustice. The Pulitzer Prize committee should be ashamed of making me feel this way. I have spoken. Thank you."

The Onion has a long, noble history of scoops. Following the 9/11 attacks in 2001, the Onion scooped its rivals by gaining an interview with God Himself, who angrily clarified his do not kill rule. In 2010, the Onion also revealed that Justin Bieber was in a fact 51-year-old sex offender called Michael Cote.

To add your name to the hundreds who want to right this wrong, you can sign the petition here.

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Donald Trump's inauguration signals the start of a new and more unstable era

A century in which the world's hegemonic power was a rational actor is about to give way to a more terrifying reality. 

For close to a century, the United States of America has been the world’s paramount superpower, one motivated by, for good and for bad, a rational and predictable series of motivations around its interests and a commitment to a rules-based global order, albeit one caveated by an awareness of the limits of enforcing that against other world powers.

We are now entering a period in which the world’s paramount superpower is neither led by a rational or predictable actor, has no commitment to a rules-based order, and to an extent it has any guiding principle, they are those set forward in Donald Trump’s inaugural: “we will follow two simple rules: hire American and buy American”, “from this day forth, it’s going to be America first, only America first”.

That means that the jousting between Trump and China will only intensify now that he is in office.  The possibility not only of a trade war, but of a hot war, between the two should not be ruled out.

We also have another signal – if it were needed – that he intends to turn a blind eye to the actions of autocrats around the world.

What does that mean for Brexit? It confirms that those who greeted the news that an US-UK trade deal is a “priority” for the incoming administration, including Theresa May, who described Britain as “front of the queue” for a deal with Trump’s America, should prepare themselves for disappointment.

For Europe in general, it confirms what should already been apparent: the nations of Europe are going to have be much, much more self-reliant in terms of their own security. That increases Britain’s leverage as far as the Brexit talks are concerned, in that Britain’s outsized defence spending will allow it acquire goodwill and trade favours in exchange for its role protecting the European Union’s Eastern border.

That might allow May a better deal out of Brexit than she might have got under Hillary Clinton. But there’s a reason why Trump has increased Britain’s heft as far as security and defence are concerned: it’s because his presidency ushers in an era in which we are all much, much less secure. 

Stephen Bush is special correspondent at the New Statesman. His daily briefing, Morning Call, provides a quick and essential guide to British politics.