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What the papers have to say about April Fool's Day.

April Fool's Day is upon us, and with it a host of fake newspaper stories. If, like me, you've had an early start and are finding it all a little confusing, here is a guide to what not to believe.

To be updated through the morning -- let us know if we've missed any!

Guardian

Labour-strategists-campai-012 

Top marks for effort go to the Guardian, which has run a story on a brand new Labour campaign strategy.

In an audacious new election strategy, Labour is set to embrace Gordon Brown's reputation for anger and physical aggression, presenting the Prime Minister as a hard man, unafraid of confrontation, who is willing to take on David Cameron in "a bare-knuckle fistfight for the future of Britain", the Guardian has learned.

The paper reports that strategists are considering engineering a "high-profile incident of violence on the campaign trail", and that another tactic being discussed is "provoking a physical confrontation" at the TV leadership debates.

Brilliant -- and PoliticalBetting was nearly taken in.

Tribune

Another good 'un from the left-wing journal, which reports that "Tribune is facing a hostile takeover bid" from none other than Alexander Lebedev.

Mr Lebedev, who also owns the London Evening Standard and the Independent, as well as Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, has offered to buy 75 per cent of the magazine's shares for a nominal payment of £1.50, 50 per cent more than he paid for the Evening Standard, valuing the magazine at £2.

The story plays it so straight that I was very nearly had. Special mention for the plethora of references to how great Tribune is ("prestigious", "revamped website and marketing strategy", "institution of British journalism"). It almost makes you wonder whether the paper is hinting . . .

Independent

Speaking of Lebedev . . . the Independent reports that a second Hadron Collider will be built on the Circle Line.

Health and safety advisers to London Underground are understood to be concerned about the proposal, and have raised the prospect of a mini black hole being created at Westminster when the two proton beams collide to re-create the conditions of the Big Bang.

Inventive? Yes. Plausible? Hell no.

Telegraph

The Telegraph reports that specially trained ferrets are helping to bring broadband to rural "dead-zone" areas.

Jon James, director of broadband for Virgin Media, said: "For hundreds of years, ferrets have helped humans in various jobs. Our decision to use them is due to their strong nesting instinct, their long, lean build and inquisitive nature, and for their ability to get down holes. We initially kept the trial low-key as we wanted to assess how well the ferrets fitted into our operations before revealing this enterprising scheme."

It almost sounds plausible when the story gives examples of ferrets being used to lay cables in the past, but one look at the picture of a ferret in a minature reflective jacket, and all doubt is dispelled.

Is this a joke?

We were fairly sure that this story from the Sun was an April Fool's Day stunt:

A flying fish gets its own back on an angler by leaping from the water -- and slapping her in the face.

Jodi Barnes was left with a sore cheek when she and a bunch of pals went fishing with BOWS AND ARROWS.

Fishing? With a bow and arrows? Would they not even try to make their report sound convincing?

But lo and behold, the Daily Mail runs the same story: "Revenge of the carp: Fish hunted by woman armed with bow and arrow leaps out of the water to smack her in the face".

Commenters on both stories have been hasty to point out that they aren't taken in, berating the shoddy Photoshopping. But a co-ordinated sting -- really? Seems unlikely. Perhaps we should all watch out for vengeful flying fish.

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Samira Shackle is a freelance journalist, who tweets @samirashackle. She was formerly a staff writer for the New Statesman.

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Appreciate the full horror of Nigel Farage's pro-Trump speech

The former Ukip leader has appeared at a Donald Trump rally. It went exactly as you would expect.

It is with a heavy heart that I must announce Nigel Farage is at it again.

The on-again, off-again Ukip leader and current Member of the European Parliament has appeared at a Donald Trump rally to lend his support to the presidential candidate.

It was, predictably, distressing.

Farage started by telling his American audience why they, like he, should be positive.

"I come to you from the United Kingdom"

Okay, good start. Undeniably true.

"– with a message of hope –

Again, probably quite true.

Image: Clearly hopeful (Wikipedia Screenshot)

– and optimism.”

Ah.

Image: Nigel Farage in front of a poster showing immigrants who are definitely not European (Getty)

He continues: “If the little people, if the real people–”

Wait, what?

Why is Trump nodding sagely at this?

The little people?

Image: It's a plane with the name Trump on it (Wikimedia Commons)

THE LITTLE PEOPLE?

Image: It's the word Trump on the side of a skyscraper I can't cope with this (Pixel)

THE ONLY LITTLE PERSON CLOSE TO TRUMP IS RIDING A MASSIVE STUFFED LION

Image: I don't even know what to tell you. It's Trump and his wife and a child riding a stuffed lion. 

IN A PENTHOUSE

A PENTHOUSE WHICH LOOKS LIKE LIBERACE WAS LET LOOSE WITH THE GILT ON DAY FIVE OF A PARTICULARLY BAD BENDER

Image: So much gold. Just gold, everywhere.

HIS WIFE HAS SO MANY BAGS SHE HAS TO EMPLOY A BAG MAN TO CARRY THEM

Image: I did not even know there were so many styles of Louis Vuitton, and my dentists has a lot of old copies of Vogue.

Anyway. Back to Farage, who is telling the little people that they can win "against the forces of global corporatism".

 

Image: Aaaaarggghhhh (Wikipedia Screenshot)

Ugh. Okay. What next? Oh god, he's telling them they can have a Brexit moment.

“... you can beat Washington...”

“... if enough decent people...”

“...are prepared to stand up against the establishment”

Image: A screenshot from Donald Trump's Wikipedia page.

I think I need a lie down.

Watch the full clip here:

Stephanie Boland is digital assistant at the New Statesman. She tweets at @stephanieboland