Tag Archives: Guido Fawkes

Riley libel case: Is this how wealth is used to stifle justice?

I’ve been made aware of an interesting political angle to the libel case brought against me by Rachel Riley:

It seems that right-wing sites on social media can say whatever they like, and their victims are expected to “take it on the chin”, whereas those attacking left-leaning sites are “only too happy to call in the lawyers to extract apologies – and of course money”.

I refer to the right-wing Guido Fawkes blog, which mistakenly claimed that Labour leadership contender Rebecca Long-Bailey had misled the nation about her personal wealth, being married to a chemical industry tycoon.

She isn’t.

In fairness, Guido’s bosses have apologised and deleted the article and links to it.

But it’s not a good look for a site that claims to fight “fake news”.

And according to Zelo Street (whose article forms the basis of this one), Guido boss Paul Staines “claims not to take any notice of legal threats and attempts to prevent him from publishing what he wishes”.

So we have a situation where right-wing organisations can insult people, and mislead the public about them willy-nilly. Is that because they know their targets can’t afford to sue them?

In contrast, when someone else – like me – raises a legitimate issue, I get lumbered with a hugely expensive court action.

The Zelo Street information suggests that I’m right in thinking the case against me is more about buying a verdict than actually serving justice.

But they didn’t count on enough people supporting my CrowdJustice campaign to give me a stab at defeating them.

So far, nearly £50,000 has been raised – but more is needed. When I started, I did not expect to get far, but the stunning amount of support I’ve received has given me a fighting chance.

Please keep the cash coming in, and encourage others to do the same. Here’s a reminder of how to do it:

Please consider making a donation yourself, via the CrowdJustice page.

Email five of your friends, asking them to pledge to the CrowdJustice site.

Post a link to Facebook, asking your friends to pledge.

On Twitter, you could tweet in support, quoting the address of the appeal.

On other social media platforms, please mention the campaign there, quoting the appeal address.

I can disprove the allegations against me. With your help, I’ll be able to afford to.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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Right-wing media are having trouble finding a new anti-Corbyn smear

Ian Bone (right) accosts Jacob Rees-Mogg and his family outside their Westminster home.

What a shame (I don’t think) – the anti-Corbyn express is running out of steam.

This week the big push was to link Mr Corbyn with one Ian Bone, a ‘Class War’ activist who accosted Jacob Rees-Mogg and his children outside the right-wing, Brexiter Tory’s home.

The Daily Mirror told us last week:

‘Class warrior’ Ian Bone led a small group who targeted the Old Etonian, his wife, their nanny and four of his six children outside their £5.6m home in Westminster.

A video posted on Tuesday night by the Class War group shows Mr Bone targeted Mr Rees-Mogg’s young children directly, telling them: “Your daddy’s a horrible person.”

Asking how much Mr Rees-Mogg pays his nanny, 71-year-old Mr Bone told the youngsters: “Daddy doesn’t pay her very much!

“Daddy says the minimum wage doesn’t count for anything!”

Mr Bone is friends with Jeremy Corbyn’s brother, Piers, and once claimed Andrew Fisher, a senior figure in the Labour leader’s office, supports their group, according to The Sun.

Propaganda site Guido Fawkes was quick to condemn the incident as a left wing ambush, and rabid Tory backbencher Nadine ‘Mad Nad’ Dorries leapt on the bandwagon by attributing it to “Corbyn cultists”. There was just one problem…

This problem:

Let us be perfectly clear: I am not happy with friends and relatives of a political figure being tarred by association with them. If you must condemn someone, it should be for what that person has done, not who they know or who their relatives happen to be.

So Mr Bone was wrong to involve Mr Rees-Mogg’s family.

But the newspapers – and commentators like Ms Dorries – were also wrong to falsely associate Mr Bone with Jeremy Corbyn, a man he doesn’t even like.

The media and the pundits came a cropper on this one. But I doubt they’ll think too hard about it before trying again.

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Jeremy Corbyn ‘visits restaurant’ – shocker!

Vox Political didn’t ask Jeremy Corbyn about his eating habits but we understand that he also – brace yourselves – drinks liquids [Image: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire].

This Writer saw Mr Corbyn’s visit to a restaurant mentioned on the social media last week – and I remember wondering, what was the big deal?

I mean, he’s an MP who lives in London, near his place of work, so one would imagine he has the wherewithal to visit a restaurant once or twice a year, at least.

Then I realised that this was a revelation that Mr Corbyn had visited a restaurant while he was on holiday.

… Which makes it even more understandable, I would have thought.

What next? “John McDonnell visits a bank”?

It was no surprise when the Fawkes blog saw that Jezza was on holiday in Mexico and decided to talk well about it, while lying badly. First on their agenda was to claim maliciously that Corbyn should have been in Parliament at the time, although the Commons has not been sitting. But this was a mere hors d’oeuvres.

The rather more substantial entrée came with the totally untrue claim that Jezza had been paying homage to Leon Trotsky, who was assassinated in Mexico City in 1940, and whose life is the subject of a museum there, in the house he lived in at the time of his murder. Corbyn, his wife and two friends visited a restaurant a whole city block away from the museum. But they did not visit it.

So out came the smear. “Labour did not deny that Jeremy Corbyn visited Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky’s house on a communist-themed jolly to Mexico this week … The Labour leader would have been able to visit the office where the Bolshevik revolutionary was bludgeoned to death by a Stalinist with an ice pick in 1940 … Corbyn could also have passed by Trotsky’s grave”. Except he didn’t visit either location.

Too many in and around our free and fearless press take the Fawkes blog on trust. They should exercise more care, but cannot resist the temptation to take up the constant stream of Corbyn-bashing smears. And all it does is to propagate Fake News.

Source: Zelo Street: Corbyn Trotsky Homage – FAKE NEWS


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This is NOT the state of British politics, but you should still be sickened [STRONG LANGUAGE]

Clive Lewis has apologised for the words he used a month ago. [Image: ANTONY KELLY].

You can tell the Conservatives are in trouble – one of their most fervent supporters on the social media has just whipped out a month-old ‘dead cat’ to distract us all from the Tory disasters about Universal Credit and Brexit, among all the others.

You’ll recall that ‘dead cat’ is a term for a tactic in which a dramatic, shocking, or sensationalist topic is introduced into any kind of discourse (in this case UK politics) in order to divert attention away from a more damaging subject.

In this occasion, it is an incident in which Labour MP Clive Lewis is heard saying, “Get on your knees, bitch,” at a Momentum-hosted game show running alongside the Labour Party conference last month.

He said it to Mr Sam Swann, a 28-year-old actor who was kneeling on the stage to take the score, and who clearly did not take offence. He told The Independent, “It is clearly jovial… I think Clive Lewis is an absolute legend.”

So no hard feelings. And let’s face it, if it was such a terrible thing to do, surely an outcry would have been kicked up immediately – right?

After all, the entire event was filmed by Novara Media and has been on that organisation’s Facebook page since September 28. There are only two comments and neither is a complaint about Mr Lewis.

But a week is a long time in politics, let alone a month – and the revelations about Harvey Weinstein broke between then and now. Suddenly it became possible for a remark made in poor taste but that was “jovial” to be considered entirely beyond the pale.

And then the Tories had a bad, bad couple of weeks. Clearly someone thought it was time to distract us all with a dead cat disguised as a “bitch” – so a cropped clip appeared on the Guido Fawkes blog.

This is not where British politics is at the moment – it’s just where certain people want us to be looking, instead of at the failings of the minority Conservative government.

It didn’t take long for rent-a-quote Labour MP Jess Phillips to stick her knife in, apparently assuming Mr Lewis said the offending words to a woman:

Novara’s Aaron Bastani clarified:

Tricky point, this, as brosocialism is a word that can be weaponised against the people to whom it refers. People identified as such are said to see the political discourse as being entirely about the class struggle, with problems of racism and sexism arising from that. There is an argument for it – referring back to Weinstein, you can see that his crimes (if he’s guilty of them, which has yet to be proved in court) arose from the fact that he was in a position of power over others, which is exactly what the class struggle is about.

Mr Bastani’s point is that accusations of sexism against him can’t apply as he and Novara do not discriminate on grounds of gender. Fair point?

If all her mates are women, then doesn’t that mean Ms Phillips is sexist? And besides, what about the upper-class elephant in the room?

It seems clear that Ms Phillips is mistaken to bang the sexism drum, as the following suggests:

https://twitter.com/ScouseGirlMedia/status/921502577816203264

That seems to be the attitude from those who were there:

Meanwhile, people are calling out Guido Fawkes blogger Paul Staines for hypocrisy, as he freely uses the word “bitch” in his own writing. Examples follow:

And what about the way followers of the Guido Fawkes blog have treated Dawn Foster? Read this:

The misapplication of the sexism label has incense many commentators. Let’s go back to Aaron Bastani’s comment, pointing out that Mr Lewis was talking to a man. Here’s the response from Guido Fawkes:

Brace yourself for the following responses:

It seems some Tories and Tory supporters have been trying to get on the bandwagon, but they’re being shot down:

https://twitter.com/SeemaChandwani/status/921384113772298240

Finally, let’s have a dose of reality:

And:


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Accusation games: It’s all falling apart for the knee-jerk “anti-Semitism” accusers

Momentum’s former vice-chair, Jackie Walker: Does she look like an anti-Semite now? [Image: Andy Hall for the Observer].

Isn’t it funny how these people are starting to be pulled into the light, when they thought they could play their dirty little accusation games from the shadows.

It’s like a game of aggressive-Zionist join-the-dots now; Shai Masot leads to Labour Friends of Israel, and from there on to the Jewish Labour Movement and who knows where.

This Writer has to wonder whether this conspiracy – and it is a conspiracy, have no doubt about that – would have been rumbled if, for example, people like myself hadn’t objected to the claims of anti-Semitism when they were levelled at Naz Shah, Ken Livingstone and Jeremy Corbyn last summer.

I was warned off, you know. Good friends told me to be very careful of what I was saying, because the people I was accusing are “very dangerous indeed”.

Maybe they are, but facts have a habit of getting out. And while my articles back then produced a strong opposing – verbal – reaction from certain of our favourite figures and organisations (including a few of the kind of ad hominem claims mentioned below) there have been no bullets or bombs (yet).

They also seem to have got people thinking.

When Jackie Walker (mentioned in the Mondoweiss article quoted below) was accused at the Labour Party Conference, it seems more alarm bells started ringing.

And now we have the Al-Jazeera investigation (why not BBC? Why not ITV? Why not Channel 4 or the British mainstream print media?) that revealed Shai Masot and his little network of … I think they’re being called “infiltrators”.

It is time to root out every last one of these operators.

Anybody who has been involved in the anti-Semitism witch-hunt within the Labour Party last summer needs to be pulled in and checked out. That includes Paul Staines of the Guido Fawkes blog. It includes John Mann, who accused Ken Livingstone. Jonathan Arkush, President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, who gave evidence to the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee when it was accusing Mr Corbyn, would be worth questioning – as would every member of the committee itself, as their performances in the evidence sessions made it clear that they had already made up their minds before asking a single question.

Some of them might have nothing to do with it – perhaps all of them. But that has yet to be demonstrated.

What about Jackie Walker’s accusers in the Jewish Labour Movement – and, for that matter, in Momentum?

What about the national newspaper writers and editors who reported each story?

The list of possible suspects gets ever-larger, and is likely to grow even further, if these people are contacted and questioned in a thorough manner.

The issues here are serious. We are being told that agents of a foreign country have infiltrated our institutions and undermined our foreign policy with false accusations against our politicians and political figures.

As the extract below shows, the trail leads back at least as far as Mark Regev – and he is Israel’s ambassador to the UK.

At the very least, this is a major diplomatic incident.

So why is the Conservative Government refusing to take the necessary investigative steps?

While an Israeli operative’s efforts  to “take down” Britain’s Deputy Foreign Minister, may appear to be the biggest scandal to arise out of Al Jazeera’s investigative documentary The Lobby, what became clear to me throughout the four-part series was that the primary function of the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) and other pro Israel groups in the UK working with the Israeli embassy was smearing Palestinians and their supporters with charges of anti Semitism and other nefarious ad hominem claims.

Jackie Walker, former vice-chair of Momentum, the left wing of the Labour party, called this “a constructed crisis for political ends”.

Evidence of this runs throughout the four-part series. Mark Regev, Israel’s ambassador to the UK, at a private meeting held during the annual Labour Party Conference in Liverpool last September, advises key activist leaders of Labour’s pro-Israel contingent on strategy and talking points:

“Why are people who consider themselves progressive in Britain, supporting reactionaries like Hamas and Hezbollah?  We’ve gotta say in the language of social democracy, I think, these people are misogynistic, they are homophobic, they are racist, they are anti-Semitic, they are reactionary. I think that’s what we need to say, it’s an important message.”

Jennifer Gerber, director of Labour Friends of Israel, is captured saying in conversation at Labour’s annual conference that anti-Semitism is “the defining narrative actually now”. Defining narrative of what? The Labour party? Or the LFI’s strategy of taking down the leftwing branch of the party?

[Ella Rose] reveals a trajectory of what could be perceived as a strategy of accusation (of anti semitism), a gotcha focus with the objective of trapping people, as a means of one-upsmanship so as to advance the profile of the Jewish Labour Movement on the right flank of Labour, aligned with the faction of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.

The suggestion by critics that anything untoward is taking place is angrily rebuffed. Labour’s right flank postures itself as the real victims– for being accused of falsely accusing! For example, Michael Foster, a generous Jewish donor (£700,000) to Labour, last summer accused Corbyn supporters of behaving like “Nazi stormtroopers”, and was suspended by the party for the abuse, leading to yet more glaring Blame-Corbyn headlines in the British press.

As for those targeted, the bigger fish the better, beginning with Jeremy Corbin, of course, and his supporters in Momentum, like Walker. Labour party members are targeted for re-education programs through Labour Party trainings on anti-Semitism, and if you slip up you’re subject to an inquisition with the threat of being thrown out of the party, loudly and publicly with the press cheering it on.

Source: ‘Constructed crisis for political ends’: anti-Semitism claims are prime weapon for UK Israel lobby, Al Jazeera shows

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Shocking Cabinet gender pay gap revealed – Guido Fawkes

[Image: Guido Fawkes blog.]

[Image: Guido Fawkes blog.]

Ultra-right-wing blog Guido Fawkes took a rare step towards criticising the government, with an article attacking the gender pay gap among Cabinet ministers.

“Following the government announcement today that they will force companies to disclose their gender pay gap,” writes Guido, “it seems only right to look at how David Cameron performs on the same metric.

“After carrying out an extensive gender pay audit, Guido can reveal that female members of the Cabinet are paid a shocking 8.4% less than their male counterparts. Men in the Cabinet are paid on average* £126,478 , while women on average* are paid just £116,693…”

Really? That seems a little low. While applauding Guido’s honesty in pointing out this sickening Tory misogynist discrimination, one wonders whether he has included all income claimed by these ministers.

*Calculation based on the mean average wage by gender for all who attend cabinet.

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Right-wingers grossly underestimated popularity of Jeremy Corbyn

Part of the dialogue on Twitter about Jeremy Corbyn’s suitability for the job of Labour leader, mentioned in an earlier blog post, included this gem from one Jon James, who seems to misunderstand where Labour belongs on the political spectrum:

150713jeremycorbynpopular

Ah right. So he’s not popular among the wider Labour membership at all. Let’s pass this one over to that illustrious right-wing gutter-trash Guido Fawkes blog for a perspective from the Uptight Right:

150713jeremycorbynguido

You have to read between the lines a little – Guido author Paul Staines wouldn’t understand a mature political argument if it spat in his face (at least, not when he’s in character), so his opinions must be taken lightly.

He’s saying that a vast majority of Labour’s grassroots members are practically ordering their MPs and CLPs to back Corbyn.

“Everyone I speak to” wants him to win, according to a Kendall supporter in the article. Clearly, then, that person should follow the wishes of their constituents.

Guido reckons Labour’s incumbent right-wingers are angry that Corbyn has been given the chance to widen the debate – showing, again, that he totally misunderstands Labour politics. You see, Labour still agrees with democracy. It’s the Conservative Party that prefers the opposite.

So, in answer to the question highlighted in red… It’s working out just fine, thanks.

As for Mr James, the tweeter who claimed Corbyn was only popular among Lefties on the social media… Your move, squire.

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Tory smear tactics are too obvious by far

Whose idea was it to buy thousands of Twitter followers for Owen Jones, in imitation of the tactic for which David Cameron was recently shown up?

Under the headline David Cameron has tens of thousands of Twitter followers who DON’T EXIST, yesterday’s (February 12) Daily Mirror told us: “David Cameron, who famously claimed “too many tweets make a t***”, faces Twitter shame as tens of thousands of his followers don’t exist.

“The Tory leader has 915,000 followers on the social network, which he joined five years ago.

“But media experts say 15% were ghost accounts – meaning about 137,000 of his Twitter friends are imaginary, while another 393,000 of his followers are deemed “inactive”.

“Celebs have previously been exposed for buying followers to boost their numbers, with online eBay scams arranging for 100,000 fake followers to flock to an account for just £25.”

Now let’s look at what happened to Owen Jones today.

Vox Political is not close to Mr Jones. The Chavs and The Establishment author has not acknowledged this blog’s existence and he never responds to our tweets. He does, however, strike this writer as an honourable person, so when he tweeted

150213jonesfollowers1

there was every reason to believe him.

Then, today (Feb 13), this happens:

150213jonesfollowers2

You see, this turned up on the pro-Tory Guido Fawkes blog today:

150213jonesfollowers3

What’s going on?

It seems clear that some Tory got wind that their leader’s fake followers were going to be outed in the media, so they started buying followers for a prominent Leftie instead, so they could point at him and say: “Look! Look! Those Labour boys are just as bad!”

How sad for them that Owen twigged what was going on, but in any case, two wrongs don’t make a right and some might say a British Prime Minister buying followers to make himself look popular is a lot “wronger” than anything a Leftie journo might do.

In any case, we know that Owen didn’t buy his fake followers.

Perhaps Guido would care to own up and tell us what the game is? How about it, Mr (real name) Staines?

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Right-wing blogger attacks political neutrality of Citizens Advice

141219cab

That’s right – the Citizens Advice Bureau has come under attack from the right-wing Guido Fawkes blog, which is trying to create a story about a haven of “Labour apparatchiks”, operating a politicised agenda behind a mask of neutrality. The email extract above is being presented as justification.

What utter codswallop!

The claim is that the charity, which helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice, pushes a left-wing or Labour-supporting agenda because it is “stuffed full” of Labour members like “former Miliband aide and Labour candidate Polly Billington”.

In fact, a quick glance through the very email being waved around as evidence is enough to prove the opposite. It leaves no doubt that Ms Billington is leaving her role in Citizens Advice precisely because she knows that taking up her political activities would create a conflict of interest if she were to remain. It’s there in black and white.

The email states: “Polly and I have been thinking carefully about how to make sure this is a smooth transition, so that the campaigns and communications teams are fully supported… and both THE REALITY and perception of our political neutrality are maintained” [boldings and CAPS mine].

That’s right – the intention is to maintain THE REALITY of the charity’s political neutrality.

How did Guido report it? She “has been moved from the front line … so that the ‘perception of our political neutrality’ is ‘maintained’. This is an extremely clumsy misinterpretation because, as noted above, the email refers very clearly to THE REALITY of the charity’s political neutrality.

Indeed, the CAB Code of Conduct prohibits any politicisation of the kind suggested by Guido: “Trustees and committee members must comply with… the avoidance of activities which might compromise Citizens Advice’s political neutrality.”

So where Guido‘s article continues: “Meanwhile, the charity has just hired the Resolution Foundation’s James Plunkett as its new head of campaigns. That would be the same James Plunkett who used to work for Gordon Brown and who has written a string of articles for the Guardian laying into the Tories and “the cuts”. Wonder how they will maintain his ‘perception of political neutrality’,” again it is spouting nonsense. He will be tied into political neutrality by the same code of conduct that ties everybody else in positions of authority, including members of CAB trustee boards across the United Kingdom who may be supporters of the Conservative, Labour, Green or any other party in their personal life, including this writer.

Since the article is clearly trying to suggest the CAB’s political neutrality is only a front, it seems clear that CAB has every right to sue Guido into oblivion – or at least seek compensation for the intended damage to the charity’s reputation.

This seems like another attempt to claim left-wing political bias that isn’t there, in order to install exactly the same kind of sympathy towards the right-wing parties instead – for an example of this strategy, look at the BBC.

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Farage and Fawkes pick a fight they can’t win

'Just More Fun': It seems unlikely that Myleene was forced to leave the UK for Ibiza, where she was snapped frolicking on a boat inscribed with the legend 'Just More Fun' [Image: Daily Mirror.]

‘Just More Fun’: It seems unlikely that Myleene was forced to leave the UK for Ibiza, where she was snapped frolicking on a boat inscribed with the legend ‘Just More Fun’ [Image: Daily Mirror.]

It seems some bloggers – and indeed, the leader of a minor political party – don’t know there is a huge difference between emigration and deportation.

Not to worry – Vox Political is happy to spell it out for people like Nigel Farage and the author of Guido Fawkes’ blog: Emigration is when you leave a country of your own accord. Deportation is when you are thrown out, against your will.

So when Labour candidate Paula Sheriff tweeted: “If multi millionaire Myleene Klass doesn’t like mansion tax perhaps she should emigrate with Sol Campbell and Griff Rhys Jones! Toodle pip!” she was clearly suggesting that Myleene may choose to do so, if she so desires [all boldings mine].

141119sheriff

Nigel Farage’s response – “Labour candidate wants woman born to immigrants deported for disagreeing with her policy. Will the media cover this?” – therefore completely misrepresents what Ms Sheriff said.

141119farage

And Guido’s comment under the headline Labour candidate wants to deport Myleene Klass – “Talking of ‘the language of repatriation’ that Labour are up in arms over this morning, it’s not just a UKIP candidate who is in hot water over their comments about sending people packing. Meet Paula Sherriff, Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate for the very winnable seat of Dewsbury and Mirfield… Freedom campaigner Myleene was born to an Austrian father and a Filipino mother, while Sol Campbell’s parents are Jamaican. Classy” – is similarly misleading, if not downright ignorant.

Bonfire night was two weeks ago, Guido – it’s a little late to be stacking up fuel and setting a fire under yourself, isn’t it?

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