The Existence of Laws

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The Existence of Laws

A Blog by James Forrest for TSFM

I am a socialist, and as a socialist I believe in the fundamental goodness of people. Some people find that hard to believe when they read the stuff I write.

I published my first novel recently, on politics and the corrupting nature of it, and it is a deeply cynical book, a book where no-one has clean hands come the end. What has surprised some of those who’ve read it is that I didn’t focus on the lies and smears of the right, but the hypocrisy and deceit of those who claim to be of the left.

Corruption, you see, doesn’t respect political boundaries or points of view. It’s like rainwater. It finds every crack, and gets in there.

My political beliefs revolve around two apparently paradoxical elements; the belief in the inherent decency of people and the need for a strong, and powerful, state. I believe the second underpins the first, and this brings me into conflict with a lot of people, some on the left and some on the right. Too many people see the state as inherently evil, as something that interferes too much in the lives of ordinary people. As something suffocating.

Yet the state exists to protect us. It exists to provide a safety net. It exists to regulate and to oversee. If the state is made up of bad people, if the gears of society are captured by those with malicious or selfish intent, the results are obvious; war, corruption, chaos.

The vast majority of our problems in the modern age can be neatly summed up in two lines from Yeats’ poem “The Second Coming”, which I used to open my novel. “The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.”

We live in a time when those who are protecting their own interests have assumed such power that they’ve cowed the rest of us. They have become a law unto themselves. They have changed the nature of the game, because they have sapped our will to the extent some barely put up a fight anymore. The weak get weaker, and the strong use their strength to crush the rest even more. It is a vicious struggle, a downward spiral.

Society is held together not only by the endeavour and common interests of its citizens but by a collection of laws. We elect the people who make those laws. They do so in our name, and we can remove that right every four years. That is a powerful thing, and we do not appreciate it enough. The present corruption exists because we allow it to exist.

The people around me continue to puzzle over my uncommon interest in the affairs of a football club on the west of Glasgow. My own club plays in the east end. I tell those who ask that my primary interest in the goings-on at the club calling itself Rangers is no longer about football; how could it be, after all? With promotion this year they are still a full two divisions below us, emasculated, skint, weak and unstable. If we were fortunate enough to draw them in cup competition the match would be over, as a tie, by the halfway point … in the first half.

In footballing terms they are an utter irrelevance.

Rangers is more than a football club to me. They are a symbol. Their unfolding calamity is an on-going outrage. What is happening there, what is being allowed to happen, is an offense to decency. It is a stain on the face of our country.

In short, it is a scandal. It is a scandal without parallel in sport.

Yet it’s not just a sports story either. If it was, I might not be so focussed on it. What is happening at Rangers is a colossal failure of governance. It is a damning indictment against the very people who are supposed to oversee our game. It is a disgraceful abrogation of responsibility from those at the top, those who claim to be “running things.”

If this is not a failure of governance it is a result of corruption at the heart of our national sport. It says they are bought and paid for, and I will say no such thing here.

So let’s give them the benefit of the doubt. We’ll say instead that what they are is weak, indecisive, inept and disconnected from reality.

It reminds me of our political class, which has become insular and ignorant about what the public wants, and what it needs. It’s not a wonder parties like UKIP can achieve national vote shares of 25% at local elections. Nigel Farage strikes me as a dog-whistle politician, the kind who knows how to appeal to a select group of voters. He is little different to Charles Green, the man who beguiled Rangers fans into handing over large amounts of money, because he was “standing up for the club.” It is easy to do what he did, easy to do what Farage is doing.

Real leadership requires toughness. Say what you like about the Tories, but they have that in spades. Yeats was right about the worst being full of passionate intensity. Green was. Farage is. Cameron and Osborne personify it in their political outlook.

It is easy to be cowed by blunt force politics, and by “tough talking Yorkshire men” and venomous speeches about “strivers and skivers.” The politics of divide and conquer is the oldest form of politics there is, and it’s no surprise to see it practiced by some of the vested interests in the game here in Scotland. Yet, lest we forget … something significant happened last year. The maligned and the ignored, the weak and the voiceless found something they never realised they had. They discovered that, in a very real sense, the power was in their hands.

Last year, the fans rose up when the governing bodies and the media went all-out to save Rangers from the self-inflicted wounds caused by a decade of cheating, malpractice and ineptitude. I have no problem calling that what it was.

What happened at Rangers seemed incredible, but it was all too predictable, and some of us had been talking about it for years before it hit. The Association seemed caught in the headlights but it would amaze me if they really were as insular and ignorant as they appeared. They must have known how bad the outlook was for Rangers. They just chose to ignore it.

They were aided and abetted by a thoroughly disreputable media, a collection of cowards and compromisers, charlatans and frauds, masquerading as journalists, but who long ago laid aside any claim to be bold investigators and settled for commenting on events as they unfolded. More often than not, with their ill-informed opinions, sometimes due to weaknesses in intellect and others wilfully ignorant, they failed even in that.

Entire newspapers became PR machines for crooks and swindlers. They aided in the scam because they didn’t do their jobs, some because they were lazy, some because they were incompetent and others because they wanted a seat at the table and were willing to sacrifice whatever integrity they once had in exchange for one.

That all of this was embraced by the Rangers fans is amazing to me. They trusted when they should have been asking questions. They closed their eyes, covered their ears and sang their battle tunes at the top of their voices so they wouldn’t have to hear anything they didn’t like. As incredible as I found it then, and still find it now – and now, even more so, when they have already seen the results of it once – I find it pathetic too, and I do feel pity for some of them.

A lot of these people are genuine football fans, and nothing more. They have no interest in the phony narrow nationalism, or the over-blown religion, or the notion of supremacy which manifested itself in a ludicrous statement from McCoist when interviewed recently on Sky.

Some of the Rangers fans look at their team of duds, kids and journeymen, they look at a boardroom of cowards and crooks, they look at a failing manager in his first (and last) job in the game and at a dark future and are not in the least bit impressed by, or interested in, the chest-out arrogance espoused in those ridiculous words “we are the people.” They know full well that their present crisis was made by men like McCoist, and they understand that pretentious posturing is not an act born of strength, but a scrambling around in the gutter, and a symptom of weakness.

They understand their position, and they hate it. And because they care about Rangers, because they value the club, because they cherish those things that made it a great Scottish institution, they want that back. They understand that before the Union Jack waving, Sash singing, poppy wearing, Nazi saluting, Orange element became the public face of their support Rangers meant something else, and that, above all things, is what pains them the most.

People do not hate Rangers. When the country appeared to turn its back last year, they were turning the back on favouritism and the bending of rules. Yet it would be a lie to say that there is not an element of dislike in the gleeful mockery of many rival fans.

But they don’t hate Rangers either. They hate the version of it around which a certain section of the support continues to dance. They hate the version which hates, and so too do many, many, many Rangers supporters, and they definitely deserve better.

David Murray chose not to openly challenge that version. Indeed, he encouraged certain strands of it to flourish and grow, with his “Britishness Days” and his effort to turn the club into the “team that supports the troops.” Other clubs have done as much, if not more, for the British Army than the one that plays out of Ibrox. Other clubs have given more money. Other clubs have lent their support to those on the front lines. They just chose to do it with respect, and with class, and with dignity. They chose to do it in private, understanding that there eventually comes a tipping point between looking after the ends of the soldiers and using them to promote your own.

The army has not battened on to Rangers. Rangers has battened on to them, and although it is unclear when an altruistic motive became darker, what started out as a gesture of solidarity is now used to entrench division and promote a notion of superiority.

Craig Whyte took over from Murray and immediately understood the lure of the “dog whistle.” He knew too that the media would accept whatever he told them, without question, and as he spoke up for “Rangers traditions” he made sure the lunatic fringe was well onside. He met face to face with the hard-core extremists in the support first and made them his praetorian guard. They spoke up for him until the day the club entered administration.

So, whereas Murray pandered to them and Whyte used them to further his own ends, it was only a matter of time before someone suggested to Charles Green that he could use the same tactics to win over the support. He went even further and blatantly promoted and encouraged this mind-set, and stoked the hate and nonsense to frightening new heights. The same people who cheered Whyte to the rafters jumped on board the Big Blue Bus and the results are clear.

Through all of it, the ordinary Rangers fan has seen his club buffered against the rocks, battered, broken, smashed to smithereens and sunk. Now there’s a big hole in the side of the lifeboat, and they are terrified that further tragedies await.

They are right to be concerned. Much of the media is still not telling them what they need to know. The people in charge of their club – the owners who have lied, the former hack who covered up the truth about Whyte and now acts as a mouthpiece for Green, the “club legends” who are content to sup with the devil and take his greasy coin when they should be standing toe-to-toe with the fans – are trying to silence those members of the press who do have facts to present.

How many times now have media outlets been banned from Ibrox for daring to report the truth? The manager who demanded the names of a committee last year defends those inside the walls who are desperate to keep secret the things that are going on. He is either an unprincipled coward, or he is, himself, bought and paid for. The fans suffer for it.

The “inconvenient truth” is still being kept from them, and this denies them any chance to play an active role in their club. Indeed, it is all too possible that they’ve passed a point of no return, and that their club is heading for a new liquidation event and it can no longer be stopped.

In either case, their power has been eroded to the point at which they must feel they have nothing left to do but stand back and watch what happens next.

They are wrong. I am a socialist. I believe in the inherent good of people. I think the ordinary decent Rangers fans are the only people left who can save their club … and the means by which they will do it is as simple as it could be.

They must stand up for “big government.” They must embrace the need for a “strong state.” They must lobby the SFA, and they must trust the SFA and they must get the SFA to follow its own rules and thereby save them from any further harm.

There is a tendency amongst some Celtic fans to see our governing bodies as pro-Rangers. If it is true then those running our game are ruining Scottish football without benefiting the thing they love more. The incalculable harm that has been done to Rangers in the last 20 some months is a direct result of the subservient media and the willingness of the football authorities to be “deaf, dumb and blind.” Those who believe this has actually helped the Ibrox club have not been paying attention in class. It has irrevocably scarred them, and it may yet have played a hand in destroying them once and for all, as a force if not as a club entirely.

For years, the SFA sat and did nothing as a club in their association operated a sectarian signing policy. They did nothing whilst the fans sang sectarian songs. In their failure to act they strengthened those elements of the Rangers support, instead of isolating, alienating and eventually helping to eliminate those who saw that club as a totem pole of division and hate. Their failure over EBT’s, and their lack of scrutiny, led to one of the greatest scandals in the history of sport, and I say that with no equivocation at all. The testimony of their registrations officer in the Lord Nimmo Smith investigation was a disgrace and in years to come it will rank as one of the most disreputable and damaging moments in the association’s history.

The most egregious failures of all were the failures in the so-called “fit and proper person” tests, which allowed first Whyte and then Charles Green to assume controlling positions at Ibrox. They will pass the buck and say the responsibility lies with the club itself, in much the same way as they are content to let the club investigate itself at the present time, but any neutral who looks at this stance knows it is unprincipled and spineless. It’s like letting the defence set the terms at a trial. It is foxes investigating the chicken coop.

It is a blueprint for corruption, and a recipe for disaster.

It is now too late for the SFA to declare Green “unfit”, as it was too late when they finally slapped that title on Craig Whyte. He and his allies own Rangers, and they control its destiny. They can push the club to the wall if they choose, in the final extremity, if that gets them what they want. The time for changing that is past. The damage has already been done. The barbarians are not at the gates. They are inside the walls, and sacking the city.

The SFA will be forced to punish Rangers for the sins of the owners, for the second time in as many years, and whilst it is right that the club face up to that, all the better to send a message to other clubs and other owners, the SFA cannot be allowed to slither off the hook here as though this was none of their doing. Green will skip off into the sunset. Craig Whyte has yet to pay his fine. These people never cared about Scottish football and they don’t care now.

The SFA are supposed to. Our governing body is supposed to govern, for the good of the whole game, and not as a support system for a single club. What they have allowed to happen on their watch is absolutely shameful and if the people responsible were men at all, with any sense of accountability, they would resign en masse.

They can pretend ignorance, but only the truly ignorant would accept that. Craig Whyte was not inside Ibrox a week before RTC and other sites were dismantling his entire business history, with some of the people here doing the work the SFA would not. Whyte himself claims to have made the governing bodies aware of the scale of what was facing the club, and they did nothing at all. Heads should have rolled a year ago.

In October of last year, on this very site, I posted an article in which I wrote:

“Which isn’t to say the due diligence matter isn’t worrying, because, of course, it is. Again, no-one is going to convince me that the SFA has conducted proper due diligence on Charles Green and his backers. No-one will convince me they are satisfied that this club is in safe hands, and that the game in this country will not be rocked by a further implosion at Ibrox. They failed to properly investigate Craig Whyte, because of lax regulations requiring disclosure from the club itself, regulations which are just a joke, but they can be forgiven for that as the press was talking sheer nonsense about him having billions at his disposal, and a lot of people (but not everyone!) were either convinced or wanted to be convinced by him.

To have witnessed what Whyte did, to have witnessed the Duff & Phelps “process” of finding a buyer, and having Green essentially emerge from nowhere, with a hundred unanswered questions as to his background and financing, for the SFA to have given this guy the go ahead, only for it to blow up in their faces later, would annihilate the credibility of the governing body and necessitate resignations at every level. There would be no hiding place.”

There are times when it is fun to be right, but this is not one of them. It is dispiriting and disquieting to have been so on the nose. It scares the Hell out of me, as someone who loves football in this country, to have seen this matter clearly when the people running our game apparently either did not or chose to ignore very real, very obvious, concerns. The Internet Bampots had no special insight or access to information that was denied those at the SFA. We just weren’t prepared to ignore it and pretend that it wasn’t there. There was too much at stake.

I have become convinced that things will never change until the Rangers supporters join us in demanding the full and unabridged truth here. They need to come out from under the bed, and confront their fears. They need to be willing to take the consequences, so that their club can emerge clean from this, and start again, with all this behind them.

And it can all happen with one simple thing. The application of the rules.

The existence of laws comes down to a simple principle; they protect society from those elements within it who are interested only in their own selfish ends. We may cry out at those rules and regulations we see as “restrictive”, but the law was not made to restrict our freedoms but to protect them. Had the SFA years ago acted against Rangers sectarian signing policy, and the songs from the stands, the club would not have mutated to the point where there was no help on hand when they needed it the most. Let’s not kid ourselves about this; Whyte and Green were only able to grab control because the club itself has a dreadful image which put off respectable and responsible buyers. The SFA could have helped change that perception years ago and did nothing.

The SFA could have conducted its own investigation into who Craig Whyte was. They could have asked David Murray for full disclosure when he was running up £80 million of debt, a sum of money that is beyond belief for a single club in a small provincial backwater league. Had they had the guts to do that the club would never have spent itself into oblivion and forced the hand of Lloyds, which led indirectly to their ignominious end.

The SFA could have fully investigated Charles Green and the means by which he took control, instead of rushing through a license. His emergence at the last minute was transparently suspicious and designed to force them into a quick decision, but they did not have to bow to that pressure by making one, without being in possession of the facts, as it is now 100% clear they were not.

Had they asked for every document, had they insisted on legal affidavits and personal securities from investors (and this would have been perfectly legitimate and is common place in other licensing areas) none of this would have come to pass. After Craig Whyte they had a moral responsibility to the rest of the game to get this one right and their failure is without parallel in the history of Scottish football.

As the club hurtles towards a new abyss, names are cropping up which should send a shudder down the spines of every honest, genuine supporter of not only Rangers but every team in the land. The SFA claims that a strong Rangers is essential for the sake of Scottish football, but they have been extraordinarily lax in protecting that club, and therefore the game, from destructive elements. Craig Whyte and Charles Green had dubious personal histories, and the acquisition of the club itself was mired in controversy and scandal. Yet it was allowed.

Neither Green nor Whyte were known to have operated outside the law, yet neither was worthy of trust or stood up to scrutiny. Neither man should ever have been granted the status as fit and proper persons to assume a role in our national sport, and if it is true of them what can we say about the three men who are, presently, being touted as the Great White Hopes for a bright, new Rangers future; Dave King and the Easdale brothers?

King recently cut a deal with the South African government over an on-going dispute over taxes. In other words, he pled guilty and accepted the central plank of their argument; that for years he was engaged in wilfully with-holding vast revenues from their Treasury. The media does not like to put it like that, and the SFA seems willing to ignore it utterly, and this would be scandalous enough. But it does not stop there. HRMC rules – as well as the SFA’s own governance documents – actually bar him from serving on the board of the new club.

Last but not least, aside from being an admitted tax cheat, King is also awaiting trial in South Africa, having been indicted for corruption, forgery and fraud – 300 charges in total. Yet as recently as last week, we were told that the Association was willing to look at him and consider representations from his lawyers. This is almost beyond belief.

If Dave King’s position is untenable, and he is yet to be convicted of a crime, what can we say about the position of the Easdale’s? One of the two brothers, Sandy, has already served jail time. He is a convicted criminal, a fraudster nonetheless, who’s “victim” was the same Treasury who are appealing one case involving the old club and liquidated it entirely over another. This is precisely the kind of “businessman” the fit and proper person test was supposed to weed out, and if the SFA holds its nose here the reek will stink out the halls at Hampden for decades. If King or the Easdale’s are judged fit and proper, then who exactly is the test for? What exactly do you have to do to fail it? How do we explain the existence of laws, when these are not applied?

Pascal says “Law without force is impotent.” The SFA’s weakness has allowed one version of Rangers to destroy itself, and has allowed an existential risk to another. If the next power at Rangers resides in South Africa or Greenock I can say with some certainty that the Association is engaged in an even more dangerous roll of the dice, because the surfacing of fresh scandal will be an ever present risk, and will be of the sort no-one will survive.

The damage to Scottish football will take years to heal. The Scottish game has been through enough trauma. It does not need more. It barely survived the last calamity to hit Rangers. The rest of us should not be forced to pay the price of the next one.

The greater damage will be done to Rangers itself. If the Green crisis ends in another collapse – as it well might; another administration event is a certainty, and another liquidation is a much more likely prospect than it was before 14 February 2012 – the club will once again have to start from the bottom, and this time the reputational damage will be impossible to repair. The club faces internal strife, sporting sanctions, and criminal investigations. The last takeover might be declared a fraud. the Whyte takeover will almost certainly be. The share issue might be invalid, as well as criminal, and the people involved may well end up in jail. Lawsuits could follow from investors, there could be as yet unknown consequences from the Upper Tier Tax Tribunal (thank you Brogan Rogan for pointing out what those might be) and a host of other issues.

Rangers fans must be the loudest voices here. How do you want the world to view your club in years to come? Do you want one to be proud of, or one forever associated with the shame and disgrace of these days gone by? The one which bailed out on its tax obligations. The one with supporters who disgrace your very name. The one which allowed Whyte and Green to take you to the cleaners and send you to the wall. The one which handed over control to one convicted criminal and another awaiting trial. Do you want to be reborn clean, or mired in the muck?

David Murray destroyed your financial stability. He made it so no bank would issue you a line of credit and no investor of note wanted to buy. Craig Whyte liquidated you. Charles Green has cast the future of the Newco into doubt and acted in a manner which has annihilated your credibility with the financial markets for decades to come.

Between these three men, they have taken everything from you, and the press and the people who run the game here, as well as some of your own blindly ignorant fans, have allowed them to do all this and more. Now they conspire to hand the keys to Ibrox to other men of questionable character, who will wreck further havoc on the reputation of the club.

The Scottish Football Association has damaged the game it was supposed to protect, but above all else their greatest failure of governance was a failure to protect one of its biggest clubs from its own excesses and those of its owners.

Rangers fans, the SFA have betrayed your trust, more than the trust of any other club. What you must insist on now is full disclosure and transparency from the powers that be in Hampden. The SFA has to end the charade of allowing your club to handle this in-house. They must hand everything over to an outside agency – whether a legal one, or a footballing body like UEFA – and they must demand co-operation and answers, and threaten to withhold the license if they don’t get them.

You must not be afraid of that. You must embrace it. The men with their hands on the gears at Ibrox are motivated by money, and nothing more. If the license is withdrawn their “investments” are worthless. They cannot risk that.

You must demand that the rules on fit and proper persons are applied, and where necessary even made stronger, to prevent your club falling into unclean hands. You must demand that they protect your reputation from further damage, by getting this all out there and acting accordingly, even if that means your club does not play football for at least a year.

You must be willing to suck it all up, knowing that what will emerge is a Rangers which has been cleansed and moves forward with honour, and dignity, led by custodians who treasure it rather than those who know the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

The Rangers Standard has recently emerged as a genuine voice for those in your support who are sick and tired of what Rangers has become, and want it restored to something that is worthy of the love and respect in which you hold it. On that website, there are discussions about the kind of club you seek to be and about whether the institution of Rangers is about more than just football.

If that’s how you feel about it then you know it is about more than how many titles the club can claim, about more than just results on the park, about more than just the game. Rangers, like Celtic, is an idea. It has to be something you are proud of.

I am a socialist, but one with a fevered imagination and a tendency to write very dark things. This piece won’t have been good reading for some of you (perhaps all of you haha!) but I think there’s more hope in here than in other things I’ve written.

In spite of everything that’s come to pass, I still believe. I believe in Scottish football. I believe in our system of football governance, even if those who are working in it are failing on some level.

In society, as much as we strain against them, laws exist for our protection. To fail to enforce them is to leave us at the mercy of those elements who would do us harm. The rules of football ensure the protection of all clubs, not just a few.

The failure to enforce the rules has never had graver consequences than here in Scotland.  The irony is that bending and breaking them has hurt the one club those violations were designed to help. It cannot be allowed to happen again.

The rules must be applied without fear or favour.

The best must find their conviction, and their passionate intensity once more.

James is a co-editor of the On Fields of Green Blog http://www.onfieldsofgreen.com/

About the author

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Trisidium administrator

Trisidium is a Dunblane businessman with a keen interest in Scottish Football. He is a Celtic fan, although the demands of modern-day parenting have seen him less at games and more as a taxi service for his kids.

5,802 Comments so far

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AuldheidPosted on10:31 pm - May 14, 2013


gie’s a gonk says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:14

The VAT is deducted in the Expenditure Section. Cheers for looking, I’ve had a few folk pore over it but with so many cells it is easy to err.

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twopandaPosted on10:33 pm - May 14, 2013


slimshady61 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:03

Long term viewers/posters would have smelled a rat the moment the troll started posting.
_

Correct Slim!

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chipm0nkPosted on10:34 pm - May 14, 2013


Indeed

The VAT element of a VAT inclusive amount is 1/6th

So if the total is £11,802,000 then the VAT is £1,967,000

Therefore the amount actually available to the club is £9,835,000

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ecobhoyPosted on10:34 pm - May 14, 2013


TSFM says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 21:42

I have heard that C4 have killed the AT story due to “Leveson concerns”.
————————————————————————————————–

Well if I understand “Leveson concerns” to mean using information derived from criminal acts then the story would never be legalled in the current climate and not even pre-Levinson (or more correctly pre-Leveson) if dealing with a professional media organisation. And it is quite right that it shouldn’t be because when people start getting involved in criminal activity to create a story or give it life then you can never ever be sure what they are capable of.

I obviously cast no aspersions on anyone at C4 and if the story has been binned for the reasons given then it would appear that the processes at C4 have worked well and we should all be glad at that.

But I am again amazed however that this info is in the public arena because I just for the life of me can’t see why any professional media organisation would leak this to an outsider. Which raises a question which possibly shouldn’t be answered: ‘Where is the info coming from about this story and even if from a trusted source do they or anyone else actually know where it originally emanates from?

All very curious especially when viewed in conjunction with Charlotte’s postings. I have said nothing about them and was waiting to see what else was coming as they certainly looked a bit like a gift horse which is, by the minute, looking more like a Trojan horse.

I certainly was very aware of the clip where ‘Brian’ was mentioned because of the fairly obvious menu of Brian’s served-up. Pick the wrong one and it could land you in the deep brown smelly stuff.

All very curious.

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AuldheidPosted on10:34 pm - May 14, 2013


gie’s a gonk says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:14

E mail TSFM to pass on your e mail address to me.

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upthehoopsPosted on10:37 pm - May 14, 2013


ekbhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:28

Pure speculation re the AT pulled piece.

Re Leveson concerns … more tapes being released I suspect however not the usual suspects on the tapes this time round . i.e. suggests one or more non-spivs.

I know where my COins would be wagered on this one.
=====================================================

Pure speculation on my part is asking if the threat of legal action (if there was one) came from Hampden or Ibrox. Just speculation.

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jean7brodie

jean7brodiePosted on10:39 pm - May 14, 2013


Was going to mention ‘Famous blue raincoat’ but decided not to!! Best of all tracks.

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Lamp Post SanniesPosted on10:42 pm - May 14, 2013


Fao Auldheid. Aye, I can see where the vat’s being deducted but you’re deducting too much. I’ll ask TSFM to pass my email address on to you.
Ta

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ekbhoyPosted on10:43 pm - May 14, 2013


upthehoops says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:37

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ekbhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:28

Pure speculation re the AT pulled piece.

Re Leveson concerns … more tapes being released I suspect however not the usual suspects on the tapes this time round . i.e. suggests one or more non-spivs.

I know where my COins would be wagered on this one.
=====================================================

Pure speculation on my part is asking if the threat of legal action (if there was one) came from Hampden or Ibrox. Just speculation.
———–
Just in further speculation , both

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AuldheidPosted on10:44 pm - May 14, 2013


ecobhoy says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:34

is it surprising that there is a leak that someone was working on a potential big story? Is that not what journalists do?

The only info about the story is that there is/was one being checked out. Nothing on the story itself has come out to my knowledge which is as you say right and proper.

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ecobhoyPosted on10:47 pm - May 14, 2013


jean7brodie says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:39

Love Jennifer Warnes and Famous Blue Raincoat – still got my original tape but never play it now just my CD and mp3.

What an album – so many really meaningful tracks.

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slimshady61Posted on10:49 pm - May 14, 2013


gie’s a gonk says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:42
—————————————–
“deducting too much VAT” ? That’ll be a first for this business. Does it mention paying it over to HMRC anywhere on the spreadsheet?

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twopandaPosted on10:54 pm - May 14, 2013


Skip distractions advised – Scores on the interpretative doors:-

MSM gone to ground recently – Could be they’re not taking PR gift anymore – or frog / hotplate thing?

`Independent Investigation` now probably irrelevant whether published or not. `Majority` Board’s reported recent actions may mean – they’ll – be out of the financial trust / risk circle. No matter what

Big Game in town is still TU`s 20+ millions

Criminal Investigation into Take-over now 11 months in – Can’t be ignored – TU will see to that

SFA now at real risk with this five-way agreement – can they distance themselves enough from claims?

`Disputed assets` can affect planning permits / development rights – collateral loans etc etc

And so on

– They never learn

PR/Guidance a disaster from 2011 – until that structural fault is tackled they’re goin nowhere good

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ecobhoyPosted on10:59 pm - May 14, 2013


Auldheid (@Auldheid) says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:44

I don’t want to make a big deal about it but most news organisations pre-Twitter operated on the ‘Loose lips sink ships’ principle and perhaps some twittering journos should think long and hard before tweeting.

It just seems madness to me that the fact C4 is working on a story involving Rangers should be common public knowledge even if the specifics aren’t known. Big companies pay a lot of money to PR outfits to find out what media organisations are up to and leaks like that are a starter for 10.

Not blaming anyone who retweets or subsequently discusses it but the intergrity of the organisation should never have been breached in the first place IMO. Actually takes away from the impact of the story anyway when it appears or not as would appear to be the case here.

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wottpiPosted on11:02 pm - May 14, 2013


Who done what where and to who are, of course, very interesting but again I have reinforce the fact that it will all come down to cash flow versus ambition

There is no doubt everything is being done in the corridors of power to let T’Rangers struggle along until some great pay day provides them with financial security – or should that be financial superiority over all bar one. But will that day ever come?

The club may have double digit millions left from the IPO but it doesn’t make sense to splash the cash just yet as currently there is no back up plan. That cash is going to have to be strung out a bit longer for now I’m afraid.

Once that IPO money is gone then where are the other sources of investment and income.

You have to rely on a sugar daddy or fleece the fans again.

The bears will accept an increase in ticket prices for Div 1 if they make it. No problem there other than it can’t be too much of a hike given that hard pressed fans will get comfortable with the current prices and the news of a freeze on next seasons books.

Sponsorship and the like plus TV money still isn’t going to be great over the next few years.

That leaves another share issue.

However are fans really going to fork out on shares again in the near future?
Those fans who paid 70p a share are currently looking at a loss of 14p.

What kind of price would shares be pegged at come the next tranche and how many would be buying when only £5m was raised when “The Club” was at rock bottom.

If Celtic continue along the same path as at present then CL football is a long way off for T’Rangers. Therefore who other than a really rich fan is going to invest money in team where it could easily get gobbled up buying talent that still might not be good enough to make a dent in the SPL, never mind CL or Europa Cup.

Naw, I think the demise of the club is probably a long way off but there will be no quick rise back to the top either.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:10 pm - May 14, 2013


ekbhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:43

upthehoops says:

Quantcast
ekbhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:28

Pure speculation re the AT pulled piece.

Re Leveson concerns … more tapes being released I suspect however not the usual suspects on the tapes this time round . i.e. suggests one or more non-spivs.

I know where my COins would be wagered on this one.
=====================================================

Pure speculation on my part is asking if the threat of legal action (if there was one) came from Hampden or Ibrox. Just speculation.
———–
Just in further speculation , both
================================================

Personally I would have thought that Malcolm Murray possibly has a very good case against the SFA or possibly a senior executive within that organisation. All depends what info was allegedly passed on by them to Craig Mather who presumably then passed it on to the RIFC Board in such a way that it allegedly appeared in the Board Minutes.

The only reason I think that the personage at the SFA would be a senior executive is that Big Aggie the tea lady might well have known but she would never be stupid enough to be caught passing it on 🙂

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greenockjackPosted on11:15 pm - May 14, 2013


Slim
Always beware a brand new poster with dynamite. Given the sieve-like and internecine qualities of the Rangers board at present, this contribution was clearly inspired either by the board or by Media House.
……………………………………………………………………………………………………

Who on the board or at Media House would have access to CW´s tape collection ?

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CastofThousandsPosted on11:22 pm - May 14, 2013


slimshady61 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:03

Long term viewers/posters would have smelled a rate the moment the troll started posting.

——————————

slimshady, not seen you around for a long time. Although I was initially very suspicious of Charlotte’s motives I was willing to suspend my caution lest important information be overlooked. I had noted that respected posters had not risen to the bait but wasn’t sure if the guard dogs were absent or just lurking. Your reappearance suggests the latter.

I’ll ditch my curiosity and return to browsing and superficial commentary.

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john clarkePosted on11:23 pm - May 14, 2013


Does anyone know what present Law has to say about newspapers etc publishing stories they learn about from insider ‘leaking’ or theft of documents by whistleblowers etc ( where the journalist is not the thief but merely the recipient of the details behind the story?)

I have deep, and very deep, reservations about the direction that the Leveson Inquiry might take if it is the case that,even now, before the inquiry is anywhere near conclusion, and before any action is taken on its recommendations, Channel 4 is pulling stories about the squalid boardroom battles of a third division club in the SFL and the shabby, possibly illegal business transactions of several bunches of spivs, shysters, convicted tax cheats, conflicted office-bearers, etc etc.

This is really serious stuff , if it suggests that the UK Press and TV as a whole will follow the despicable example of the SMSM and give up any notion of investigative journalism.

We have seen what that has led to in the squalid , nay, sordid Govan situation.

What will it do in relation to the really serious business of national politics? Political charlatans are infinitely more dangerous than 500,000,000 million yorkshire school sprint champions.

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AuldheidPosted on11:24 pm - May 14, 2013


ipm0nk says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:34

Indeed

The VAT element of a VAT inclusive amount is 1/6th

So if the total is £11,802,000 then the VAT is £1,967,000

Therefore the amount actually available to the club is £9,835,000
=========================

I used a fifth way (20%) VAT rate way back so if its a sixth they are up £393k this year and next reducing red figure to £604k and -£9,487,560 -£10,861,354
in red the next two.

Ive amended.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:30 pm - May 14, 2013


Auldheid (@Auldheid) says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:44

ecobhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:34

is it surprising that there is a leak that someone was working on a potential big story? Is that not what journalists do?
==============================================================
Yes it really does surprise me that there was a leak on a potentially big story. I think I understand how it happened – possibly the story was originally seen as only being Blog material but when it moved to a TV slot the stakes were much higher but the leak had already happened.

It might surprise you to learn that a journalist who publicly leaks that a target is being investigated, even without giving any details, would be guilty of gross misconduct IMO and liable to summary dismissal. It isn’t a game especially not when you take on an organisation like Rangers.

That would apply even if the journo had brought the story in because his colleagues would most likely feel that he/she couldn’t be trusted to keep their trap shut.

I’m telling it how it is, as far as I see it, and I know that some will be unhappy with what I say but I have never been one who seeks to win a popularity contest.

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ianagain

ianagainPosted on11:30 pm - May 14, 2013


Back to the footie.
This last weekend we have some v v interesting games. (Celtic fans yawn at this point)
St Johnstone v the well will be tasty not least because the bust up that put Higdon in the jail was widely circulated on Steel men as being a Saints player. Should he score he will pass Bale of Spurs in the top scorers charts and likely some ladcalled Ingezi summat, no idea who he is..
ICT v Ross county will be mega. I urge all to get along.

Armageddon my rise

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ptd1978Posted on11:36 pm - May 14, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 10:58
Personally I see no problem in working towards a first stage of ‘non-violent differences’
____
So is a Celtic fan only a “proper” Celtic fan if he’s socialist???
How about supporting the team being enough.

madbhoy24941 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 11:10
Fair point. There’s certainly politics at play. Just not structured party politics.

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TSFMPosted on11:38 pm - May 14, 2013


ecobhoy says:

TSFM says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 21:42

I have heard that C4 have killed the AT story due to “Leveson concerns”.
————————————————————————————————–

Well if I understand “Leveson concerns” to mean using information derived from criminal acts then the story would never be legalled in the current climate and not even pre-Levinson (or more correctly pre-Leveson) if dealing with a professional media organisation. And it is quite right that it shouldn’t be because when people start getting involved in criminal activity to create a story or give it life then you can never ever be sure what they are capable of.

I obviously cast no aspersions on anyone at C4 and if the story has been binned for the reasons given then it would appear that the processes at C4 have worked well and we should all be glad at that.
________________________________________________________________________

I am speculating because I was offered no more info than what I passed on – and Auldheid seemed to have a bit more insight than I – but what if the info from sources – not AT or C4 themselves – had been in turn obtained a la Leveson?

For example news organisation works on sources who provide info that had been obtained through hacking/taps etc. One thing to record a conversation on a handheld device, but quite another to tape two third parties in discussion or steal someone’s mail.

Also is it possible that our old friend CF had the same story that AT was working on? Timing, as they say in comedy circles, is everything, and there has been no bigger running gag than this.

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Madbhoy24941Posted on11:45 pm - May 14, 2013


RE: Rangers statement on season tickets

“Last season the Club took the unprecedented decision to slash adult season tickets by one third and juveniles by 50%.”

I know I’m being a tad pedantic but when this is your first year in the Scottish League then naturally any decision taken would be one that could easily be considered.. “Unprecedented”. Only problem is, you cannot slash the price of something that never existed until that point, this is known as setting a price, not slashing.

Now let’s say I want to be generous and see the team/club as the same one that existed for over 100 years, they still couldn’t boast about slashing prices as the article for sale is not the same as before.

Last year I bought a new BMW323, nice car with all mod cons. Now if I go to the dealer tomorrow to trade in for a new model and he says “great news, I can offer you the 2013 model but I will slash the price by 50%!” I might look around to see where Jeremy Beadle is but if he doesn’t appear, I am sure when I came to pick it up I would notice that it has an eight-track instead of CD/MP3 player, an A3 sized RAC Roadmap instead of the navigation system….etc…

But it still has the badge of honour at the front so I would automatically assume it’s a bargain, even at half the price 😮

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AuldheidPosted on11:46 pm - May 14, 2013


ecobhoy says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:30

Can you define target?. It seems a bit wide.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:46 pm - May 14, 2013


john clarke says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:23

Does anyone know what present Law has to say about newspapers etc publishing stories they learn about from insider ‘leaking’ or theft of documents by whistleblowers etc ( where the journalist is not the thief but merely the recipient of the details behind the story?)

I have deep, and very deep, reservations about the direction that the Leveson Inquiry might take if it is the case that,even now, before the inquiry is anywhere near conclusion, and before any action is taken on its recommendations, Channel 4 is pulling stories about the squalid boardroom battles of a third division club in the SFL and the shabby, possibly illegal business transactions of several bunches of spivs, shysters, convicted tax cheats, conflicted office-bearers, etc etc.
=====================================================================

Well the bottom line is it’s down to how much b*lls an editor has and it’s always been that coupled with how important the story is judged to be versus the hassle it will create for the publication and the possible legal costs entailed.

Obviously there is the public interest aspect as well. But it is often a very fine line that needs to be drawn as to whether to publish or not.

My understanding is that Leveson has concluded and it’s all down to the horse-trading between Government and media interests as to how light-touch or onerous the regulation will be.

But I really think it is just slightly OTT to link a decision, apparently made by Channel 4 to pull a story, with the conclusions of the Leveson Enquiry. This is especially so when I doubt if anyone on here has a clue as to why C4 pulled the story, if they actually have. They might have very good journalistic or legal reasons for doing so. It may also be that the story is simply wrong.

Some kind of objectivity has to be maintained on issues like this or it will damage this blog by making it look like a haven for knee-jerk reactions especially when virtually no facts are available about what the story actually is and why it was pulled.

I have learnt over the years that when I see red over something I think is totally wrong or a serious injustice that I should sleep on the matter. If I still feel the same way next day I do something about it with the cool calm head on which experience has taught me provides much more chance of a successful outcome.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:51 pm - May 14, 2013


Auldheid (@Auldheid) says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:46

ecobhoy says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:30

Can you define target?. It seems a bit wide
———————————————————————–

Target can be an individual or a multi-national organisation. Basically whoever or whatever is the subject of a media investigation to ascertain whether seemingly newsworthy allegations/claims about them, from whatever source, are accurate and capable of being substantiated to an extent that they can be published.

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slimshady61Posted on11:57 pm - May 14, 2013


madbhoy24941 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:45
—————————————–
So would your car in the analogy be “the ultimate driving machine” or “the penultimate driving machine”?

If Rangers were a shop, it would have to be John Lewis – “never knowingly undersold” 😉

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Forres Dee (@ForresDee)Posted on12:05 am - May 15, 2013


Why am I thinking that TSFM is trying to push some else’s agenda, TSFM speculation over C4 and Leveson is no different to CF and his sources.

Something is beginning to stink!!

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BartinMainPosted on12:06 am - May 15, 2013


Could I respectfully ask admin on here a question regarding the source in relation to the post about “Leveson concerns”?

If I may, can I ask- is the source reputable?

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ecobhoyPosted on12:08 am - May 15, 2013


TSFM says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:38

but what if the info from sources – not AT or C4 themselves – had been in turn obtained ……..
=====================================================================

Any journalist or news organisation can end-up with material which has been obtained by criminal means or even if not that bad – the information might be a breach of either the NUJ Code of Conduct or the the organisation’s own Code of Ethics.

This is actually quite common and part of the investigating and legalling process is designed to check the provenance of the information as people actively try and dupe journos and media organisations to achieve their own agenda which is often not obvious. There’s nothing wrong with someone having an agenda but the real trick is establishing what that agenda truly is and it is seldom obvious.

As I have noted earlier it appears that the C4 checks appear to have worked in this case which is good journalism in action and should not be regarded in a negative light. Just for the record I don’t believe for one second that C4 or AT would knowingly build a story using tainted material and, more importantly, it appears they haven’t.

I also mentioned in an earlier post that my view on CF, on nothing more than a hunch, since the C4 story went down the pan went from potential gift horse to Trojan Horse.

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forweonlyknowPosted on12:12 am - May 15, 2013


TSFM 11:38

————————————————
“I am speculating because I was offered no more info than what I passed on …
————————————————

If you have fears on the source of the information, can you explain why the other posts are still up? Would that not endanger the site?

Thanks @JohnMcLean_HS67

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john clarkePosted on12:17 am - May 15, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:46

‘……..My understanding is that Leveson has concluded ..’
—-
You’re right of course.

I plead in mitigation that I have been out of the country for months and did not google properly!

You’re right also on the objectivity point. My plea in mitigation is that I use the word ‘if’.

However, as to matters being up to ‘ the horse-trading between Government and media interests’, I venture to suggest that neither of these parties can be trusted to speak for us, the ( God save the mark!) People!

On balance, if the price of freedom of the press is to accept the loathsome Murdoch’s newspapers, it is a price worth the paying if it keeps our even more loathsome politicians in check.

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paulmac2Posted on12:20 am - May 15, 2013


chipm0nk says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:34
3 1 Rate This
Indeed

The VAT element of a VAT inclusive amount is 1/6th

So if the total is £11,802,000 then the VAT is £1,967,000

Therefore the amount actually available to the club is £9,835,000
…………………………..

Unless of course you intend keeping the VAT to spend 🙂

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ecobhoyPosted on12:46 am - May 15, 2013


ptd1978 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:36

ecobhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 10:58
Personally I see no problem in working towards a first stage of ‘non-violent differences’
===============================================================

So is a Celtic fan only a “proper” Celtic fan if he’s socialist???
How about supporting the team being enough
===================================================

Not quite sure how the socialist Celtic fan came into play or even what your point is. I have undernoted your original post which referred to the lead article by James Forrester and my response to your post so that people can see what was actually being discussed.

Irrespective of Mr Forrester’s personal politics and team affiliation I was answering you on a very broad basis as I think that if we don’t recognise the ‘politics’ operating in Scottish Football then we cannot actually sort the problems that patently exist. These ‘politics’ operate on a number of levels from historic to party political and just the politics involved whenever individuals, societies and organisations are involved especially when there are differences of opinions and direction and rule books come into play.

As to your remark about ‘How about supporting the team being enough’ I’m afraid it isn’t IMO because Scottish Football is bigger than any individual team and if we don’t fix it then every team will eventually be affected to their detriment.

And as to your question: ‘So is a Celtic fan only a “proper” Celtic fan if he’s socialist???’. I can only state that I find the question not only fatuous but offensive and I have no intention of giving an answer as I have serious doubt that you would follow my reasoning.

Just for the record I am a lifelong Celtic fan but I am also a football supporter who loves good football no matter where it is played and no matter who plays it or at what level.

UNDERNOTE

ptd1978 says: {referring to the James Forrst piece}
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 08:22

Good post for the most part, but I find myself a bit uncomfortable with the introduction of politics into the post.

A football fan is a football fan. As long as they support the principle of sporting integrity and get behind their club for the sake of the club only, that’s enough. Nobody has the right to bring politics into football.

Linking the support of football clubs with politics has caused enough problems in Scotland. We need to break that link completely and not just water it down to non-violent differences.
======================================================================
Ecobhoy’s response to ptd1978

I think you have confused wishful thinking with real life. I too would be delighted if politics weren’t involved in football but you admit yourself that politics and football are already linked in Scotland and we all know the negative effects that brings.

Therefore IMO before we can tackle and cleanse the ills and corruption – of a moral nature – facing Scottish Football then we have to fully understand the political mechanisms at work and the way in which the Scottish Establishment chooses to interface with football in the country.

Personally I see no problem in working towards a first stage of ‘non-violent differences’ and see that as a positive step rather than the negative one you suggest it to be, Changing any political ‘climate’ in football or any other sphere of human endeavour is a long process which requires enormous goodwill and energy from honest people on every side of the dividing lines. All advances, no matter how small, have to be welcomed as they help instill trust in the process and participants and make the next step that little bit easier.

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CastofThousandsPosted on12:54 am - May 15, 2013


Back on more solid ground.

Following a couple of excursions into Mr. Cohens repertoire, I offer you the original ‘Class’ warriors lecturing on a theme not that far from many peoples hearts on here.

http://youtu.be/PHXtxVD21XI

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ecobhoyPosted on1:11 am - May 15, 2013


john clarke says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 00:17

On balance, if the price of freedom of the press is to accept the loathsome Murdoch’s newspapers, it is a price worth the paying if it keeps our even more loathsome politicians in check.
=============================================================

I mentioned earlier about the wisdom sometimes of leaving an important issue until after a good night’s sleep.

Perhaps I remember too well the evidence given to Leveson from some of the victims and I think of Milly Dowler and if for no other reason than her and her parents there must be independent statutory regulation of the Press. No one is removing their right to tell the truth – no one is even removing their decision to break the law. All that is happening is that they will, in future, be punished when they break the law. Don’t be conned by the media PR campaign on this – surely you see how they operate in Scottish Football so just imagine how hard they’ve been fighting to spread lies to protect their own media financial interests.

Freedom of the Press is an illusion particularly in this day and age. The only time, by and large, that the rich and powerful, are subjected to Press scrutiny is when the Establishment gives the nod. For 90% of the population it is always open season.

I’m afraid I don’t see that as a Freedom worth preserving especially if it is allied to a virtual monopoly situation run by non-UK nationals who don’t live in the country. And the levels of corruption created in numerous sectors of society by the Murdoch Empire – is that a price worth paying?

The one thing about corrupt politicians is that we can vote them out and if we don’t we truly get what we deserve. A few very brave people, and I talk of the McCanns in particualr, did what I thought was impossible – they exposed the Murdoch corruption which had spread to other media organisations in a bid to compete and not be commercially destroyed. Does that remind you of another parallel nearer to home?

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bogsdolloxPosted on1:20 am - May 15, 2013


ekbhoy says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 22:28

Pure speculation re the AT pulled piece.

Re Leveson concerns … more tapes being released I suspect however not the usual suspects on the tapes this time round . i.e. suggests one or more non-spivs.

I know where my COins would be wagered on this one.

Pure speculation
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Just what was discussed at that Rangers/SFA meeting back in October 2011?

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Danish PastryPosted on5:45 am - May 15, 2013


Hearts delaying bad news to stave off relegation? Is The Sun onto something here?

http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/4928156/Jammy-dodger-probe-into-Hearts-crisis.html

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dreddybhoyPosted on6:52 am - May 15, 2013


sevco claiming to have made their first signing John Daly according to sevco media, I take it the SFA will consider him a free agent at midnight 31/8 and as such he will be registered 1/9?

So much for the 1 year registration embargo

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Long Time Lurker

Long Time LurkerPosted on7:04 am - May 15, 2013


Has AT confirmed publically that the story has been pulled? He was tweeted, asking if the story was pulled. His response neither confirms or denies.

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helpmaboab

helpmaboabPosted on7:16 am - May 15, 2013


Jean7brodie
Maybe he could ‘Democracy Is Coming To The SFA’

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helpmaboab

helpmaboabPosted on7:35 am - May 15, 2013


Missed out ‘do’ between could and democracy
Doh!

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Danish PastryPosted on7:47 am - May 15, 2013


Long Time Lurker says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 07:04
3 0 Rate This

Has AT confirmed publically that the story has been pulled? He was tweeted, asking if the story was pulled. His response neither confirms or denies.
——-

True LTL, “hurdles to clear” doesn’t mean it’s been binned.

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Danish PastryPosted on8:01 am - May 15, 2013


A wee plug for more Armageddon fitba with BBC Alba:

Alloa Athletic v Dunfermline Athletic

DIVISION ONE PLAY-OFF FINAL: FIRST LEG
Venue: Recreation Park, Alloa Date: Wednesday, 15 May Kick-off: 19:45
Coverage: Live on BBC ALBA, score updates on BBC Radio Scotland & BBC Sport website

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FinlochPosted on8:40 am - May 15, 2013


Pressure may or may not have led to the Channel 4 piece being pulled.

The only certain thing is the story will not go away.

No matter how much they “crisis manage” with their expensive paid-for legals and PR spinners the truth will out.

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Madbhoy24941Posted on8:47 am - May 15, 2013


1. slimshady61 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:57

madbhoy24941 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:45
—————————————–
So would your car in the analogy be “the ultimate driving machine” or “the penultimate driving machine”?

If Rangers were a shop, it would have to be John Lewis – “never knowingly undersold”
—————————————————–

Good one Slim 😮

I believe this was at some point “The ultimate driving machine” which has long since been overtaken. With the recent carve-ups seen over the last 24 months, it is now looking more like a “cut and shut”.

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comeongetaffPosted on8:48 am - May 15, 2013


Thanks for that info.

I think I’ll watch that rather than the Chelski game.

(a sort of silly protest against the big money boys)

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100bjdPosted on9:07 am - May 15, 2013


mullach says:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 21:30

I’ve pulled together Charlotte’s postings (19 in all) from 11th May. At first glance they’re all over the shop concerning content. I’m putting together a timeline to see if I can make sense of it all. When I’m done, if I think its worthwhile I’ll maybe post a summary so the ‘experts’ on here can make comment. I don’t have the full RTC grounding that monster_mind above has shown so I’m likely going to be a bit thin on insight.

It may take some time.

One thing that my knaivety does make me wonder about. If Ellis was offering £33M, why did SDM eventually sell for £1.
—————————————————————————————————————————–

An offer is very different from an actual binding contract. Anybody who can get some type of letter of comfort from the bank to prove they have the potential ability to do a particular deal can probably get to some due diligence position. Guessing that Ellis used this tactic to gain information and TRY to interest real investors. Ellis had no funds of his own.

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thebasharmilestegPosted on9:29 am - May 15, 2013


Interesting discussion about Leveson etc to which I thought I’d add my thoughts.

Someone above mentioned public interest. I don’t think the intent of the Leveson Inquiry and subsequent recommendations was ever to eliminate investigative journalism in the public interest. The problem was that until recently many newspapers seemed to think that public interest involved revealing which minor celeb had cellulite or, despicably, phone hacking in cases where brutal and horrific crimes had been committed. In fact, true public interest journalism had very much petered out in recent years. With falling circulations costs are everything to a newspaper. The luxury of retaining reporters who can spend months following up a story just doesn’t exist anymore. It’s far easier for them to pay paparazzi for pics of drunken celebs at night clubs or to regurgitate stuff that a junior reporter has picked up on the web.

Then there are the downright myths and lies that are regularly pedalled because they suit the agenda of the papers owners’; health and safety, immigrants, benefit claimants, the EU – many stories in the tabloids and not a few broadsheets, have later been proven exaggeration if not entirely fabricated. And most big newspapers don’t even employ court reporters anymore, but rely on agency copy.

So what might constitute public interest? Well let’s take a theoretical publicly-listed company which has been put together for the simple purpose to allow a few well-healed individuals to get even richer. Thousands of ordinary investors may have been persuaded to put a few hundred or thousand of their own cash into the company. If that company later folds and the principals disappear to the Cayman Islands with their loot while the ordinary investor is left with nothing, surely revealing that is in the public interest- even if potentially unlawful means have been used to reveal it. I don’t think it was ever the intent of Leveson to prevent that sort of investigation. The whistleblower defence certainly exists for people on the inside who reveal shady dealings.

Anyway no recommendations from Leveson are enshrined in law or even a code of practice which the newspaper proprietors have signed up to yet. In fact they’ve proposed their own code which is only microscopically tougher than the previous one, such is their desire to comply with the wishes of the public and the government. I’m all for freedom of the press, but freedom to continue to lie, make up stories and bug or hack celebs and innocent victims of crime is not the sort of freedom that most people have in mind when that phrase is stated. C4 are right to be cautious, but if there is any hint of corroboration of the information coming from their source, then public interest surely overrides the provenance.

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neepheidPosted on9:57 am - May 15, 2013


Charlotte Fakeovers (@CharlotteFakes) says:
Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 22:15
41 1 i Rate This

I don’t know – there’s a hell of a lot of reading to be done, but here’s a wee flavour for now.

2 persons, now allegedly departed from The Rangers Football Club Limited, appear to have received a Letter Before Action, on 12 December 2012 and resent on the 13th December 2012.

Surely it would be gross negligence, bordering on criminal if this notification had been received but not passed on or actioned?

Note this penultimate paragraph for future reference.

“Please confirm therefore, by return, that you have forwarded a copy of this Letter before Action to Field Fisher Waterhouse LLP and Cenkos Securities Plc.”

This post from the previous blog lies at the heart of my scepticism regarding the stuff supplied by the shy, demure, but oh so alluring Charlotte. Has the sender (presumably a solicitor) ran out of parchment, quill pens and postage stamps, that they have to ask the recipient to forward a legal document to named professional outfits? And then confirm by return? Maybe in the age of Dickens. But in 2012? Really? It makes absolutely no sense to me.

My suspicion is that this paragraph was drafted by a journalist with no knowledge of business or legal matters, but who reckons they can turn out a nice sounding phrase. Any candidates?

Of course I may be totally wrong.

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angus1983Posted on9:58 am - May 15, 2013


OT alert!

madbhoy24941 says:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 23:45

… BMW323 …But it still has the badge of honour at the front
——

BMW? Badge of honour? Shurely shome mishtake?

I hope you’ve taken note of the following safety recall …

http://farm1.staticflickr.com/80/240503930_1ed02db631.jpg

I had a 520 a couple of winters ago, because it was the cheapest, most local car I could get after my own car argued with a cattle truck. Now, I can drive a RWD car with the best of them, but this thing was a bloody death-trap in the snow.

Sometimes I work with our local traffic police, and it is notable that they’ve done away with their BMW fleet and replaced with Audis. Apparently, the Beemers spent the whole winter in the car park cos the cops refused to drive them … ultimate driving machine? Ultimate Ditch-Finding Machine, more like. 🙂

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thebasharmilestegPosted on10:09 am - May 15, 2013


Re cars.

For many years I have owned and driven SAABs. Quite frankly there are few SAAB drivers who don’t think they are the best cars in the world, and of course they are always courteously and proficiently driven by their owners.

Now a couple of years ago a very bad thing happened, because of the mismanagement of their parent company SAAB went out of business and the SAAB name was sold on to another company, (do we detect a trend here?). At some point in the future it may be able to restart production in the old factory and hopefully give the old workforce their jobs back. If in the future I buy a new car with the SAAB badge on it, will it still be a SAAB? Will the new company claim all those old rally victories from years past? I’m sure you get my drift …

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Madbhoy24941Posted on10:18 am - May 15, 2013


angus1983 says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 09:58
—————————

To be fair Angus, the BMtroubleU was designed for the driving realities of roads positioned in the top half of the Northern Hemisphere. There is no way they could have considered the harsh and unforgiving environment of those inhospitable outlying areas like Tromsø, Baffin Island and Aberdeen!

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ecobhoyPosted on10:32 am - May 15, 2013


neepheid says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 09:57

Charlotte Fakeovers (@CharlotteFakes) says:
Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 22:15
41 1 i Rate This

Note this penultimate paragraph for future reference.

“Please confirm therefore, by return, that you have forwarded a copy of this Letter before Action to Field Fisher Waterhouse LLP and Cenkos Securities Plc.”
==================================================================

I see what you say and you may well be correct. But if we look at the CW tactics throughout they appear to be to extract a payment rather than to actually take court action or do anything directly that would actually prevent or have delayed the flotation.

And why was AIM Regulation not included in the forwarding instructions as they would appear to be the ‘natural’ party to contact given the possible argument that Cenkos and FFW might be ‘conflicted’ on the issue.

The problem is we just don’t know and I truly wonder whether it is even possible to prove the provenance of the documents even if the originals were available. As to the clip used well it’s easier to cut and paste audio than it is text. What exactly does the 12 second audio clip prove?

To me it’s stilted and unless the complete conversation or a much longer section is provided it’s impossible to understand the context and just too easy to take from it what different listeners want to hear IMO.

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Danish PastryPosted on10:58 am - May 15, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 10:32
2 0 Rate This

… What exactly does the 12 second audio clip prove?
————–

If nothing else, that Charles Green has a colourful turn of phrase. Who’d have thought his Rangersitis would have caused the actual air around him to turn blue 😀

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broganrogantrevinoandhoganPosted on11:01 am - May 15, 2013


Good Morning,

There were some particularly fine posts on a variety of subjects on here yesterday.

Besides James Forrest’s original posts we had a stream of heartfelt and well argued posts from Zero Tolerance and others on the recent histories of Celtic and Rangers on the commercial front and how their partnership at times has worked to the detriment of Scottish Football as a whole.

Then we had all the bally hoo about Charlotte Fakeover– surely a reference to the Charlotte 18 bank account oft referred to by Ian Fraser the respected financial journalist and blogger who has catalogued the idiocy of the HBOS cabal and their relationship with various well kent Scottish businessmen including SDM who had his headquarters in Charlotte Square.

Though in the interests of fairness many others had headquarters in Charlotte Square too.

Then we get the who Levinson debate amidst the rumours that Channel 4 have pulled whatever Alex Thomson was working on. Though, there is as yet no confirmation of what, if anything, has driven suppression of the story.

Reading the entire blog– I’m afraid my mind takes a strange route and wanders to a strange place—— it wanders to—– the Vital Spark!

For those who are not in the know, the Vital Spark was a Clydeside puffer captained by Peter ( Para ) Handy!

Why should my mind wander there?

Because in all the stuff discussed yesterday one word came to mind.

Furtive!

The dealings between the two big clubs, the Charlotte Makeover revelations, the suppression of a story which by other accounts may or may not have caused potential chaos within Ibrox— it is all furtive– and furtive management!

I too have been uncomfortable about the commercial connection between Celtic and Rangers at times, and while I don’t wish to necessarily excuse it, there are perhaps good reasons why the Celtic board went down a certain route.

Go back to the pre Fergus McCann days at Celtic Park. The boardroom are just no match in the furtive stakes for David Murray and HBOS. The club can’t compete financially with Murrays bank backed Rangers whose main threat on the field comes from Zero’s team.

The Celtic club will soon face the prospect of Administration or Receivership at the hands of HBOS– even though their financials– debt levels etc– are not so different to those of Rangers– but they do need to upgrade the stadium and they need to get revenue up.

One of the things the old board do is they outsource the publication of the Celtic View.

Fair enough– that might make sense– but then those they outsource it to are bought up by—– David Murray! So the Celtic view– with supposed access to players, Directors, financial interviews, transfers etc– is controlled by— The owner of Rangers!!!

Not a great money spinner the view– but Murray acquiring the rights to produce it was— Furtive.

When wee Fergus arrived on the scene he had to be equally furtive in getting the view back– and he was tough about it too— I believe that he forced a deal by threatening to starve the publication of all access to players and everyone else at Celtic park so rendering the publication useless! And in that way he kicked Murray out– but only after a fight!

I am told Murray also had access to all sorts of other info on the other clubs in the league.

Accordingly, while I accept the argument that sponsors were keen on joint sponsorship of the two clubs, it may well be that Fergus and subsequent Celtic boards took the view that the best way to ensure that they could and would not suffer further at the hands of a Furtive Rangers owner was to get as close as possible. Do joint deals in certain areas and agree certain concordats as the two biggest clubs. Not necessarily pleasant but maybe commercially necessary if you are dealing with what might be regarded as a “snake”.

A snake is a threat– and one that creeps up on the unsuspecting.

That Rangers under Murray was a Furtive organisation is beyond doubt– the EBT operation, the failure to declare the side letters, the obfuscation re HMRC, the shredding activity— Furtive– Furtive — Furtive!

Even the signing of Maurice Johnston– which Celtic were stupid enough to allow– could be said to be Furtive.

The presentation of the Murray accounts year after year with the spin and blindness put out by the succulent lamb journalists—- Furtive!!!

Murray being replaced by Whyte and subsequently Green– with all the secretly taped recordings, the secret deals and money transfers— all furtive!

Now the leaks re Malcolm Murray, the appearance of Charlotte Makeover, the pulling of the channel 4 story for whatever reason… all furtive– all cloak and dagger stuff and a million miles away from anything resembling football.

I often say to Celtic fans that when our team first took to the field in 1888 we should always remember TWO teams played for Charity– and one was Rangers Swifts.

In the intervening years– especially in recent years— everything about Rangers PLC has been furtive, secretive and always looking to steal an inch where possible by almost any means.

Celtic fans were classed as paranoid– as being in need of mental counselling and help because when they claimed that there were strange and dirty dealings at work, it was so unbelievable that the people who made such claims were clearly ill and unhinged.

Yet if you now examine the known facts– let alone the unknown ones— then you really do see a furtive mentality at work. Perhaps even a mentality which sought to ensure that other teams remained commercially weak and could not be a threat.

Rangers Football Club could be– should be– a great institution and club– but it has been allowed to become a business which no one in the same industry trusts– even within Ibrox they no longer trust one another!

Perhaps channel 4 want to expose the latest round of furtiveness– I don’t know.

What I do know is that the decent Rangers fans are sick of this– sick of being taken for a ride by those who claim to own and represent their club.

People just want to turn up and watch a team play football– not continuously hear about investigations and enquiries about who said what when and to whom.

As for the SFA etc— Furtive Furtive Furtive.

As soon as odd and inexplicable things start to happen— it smacks of someone being Furtive!!!

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Long Time Lurker

Long Time LurkerPosted on11:06 am - May 15, 2013


I found the following exchange on Twitter interesting. If I am reading this correctly, it appears that Barcabhoy is suggesting that over the next 4 weeks or so we can expect to see some disclosures [in the media] that could adversely effect SB sales.

Perhaps I am looking for things that I want to see.

Iain Boyle‏@iainboyle14h
@Barcabhoy1 what are your thoughts on sevco selling sb’s at same price as last year? No increase despite issues? Dont get it.

Barcabhoy‏@Barcabhoy114h
@iainboyle no choice if they are still playing part time teams. The quality will be similar to SFL 3

Iain Boyle‏@iainboyle14h
@Barcabhoy1 i know but i wd have thought an increase to make more cash wd have happened. Dont u/stand as dont see numbers buying as last yr

Barcabhoy‏@Barcabhoy114h
@iainboyle I think that depends on what disclosures there are in next 4 weeks

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SmugasPosted on11:10 am - May 15, 2013


O/T but quiet day. The crux of Leveson for me was actually the Milly Dowler case – specifically that the hacking journalist (IIRC) deleted messages from her phone to create space for further messages to be left. At a stroke said journalist changed reality, presumably to try and make it more ‘newsworthy.’ They created a new reality (without messages) that was different to the very reality on which they were supposed to be reporting (fine, as long as done sensitively and legally) and investigating (if there is a public interest angle and again as long as done sensitively and within the law).

The celebrity thing, whilst fully justified as an invasion of privacy issue, was really a by product of the central charge for me.

And if someone was releasing tapes, say of hacked voicemails, that would indeed be wrong, however juicy the contents may be.

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SouthernExilePosted on11:20 am - May 15, 2013


Re imminenent disclosure.

The semi annual financials to end feb must be submitted to AIM by the end of this month. These should give a clearer view of the ongoing operational burn rate and might reveal cash leaking in other directions.

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bluPosted on11:26 am - May 15, 2013


smugas says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:10

“….. – specifically that the hacking journalist (IIRC) deleted messages from her phone to create space for further messages to be left”
=====================================================
Smugas – I’m sure you’re right and this case was the tipping point for NOW/Wade and led to Leveson. The Guardian got it half right but I think it eventually came out that although hacks had hacked, the phone automatically deleted the messages, not them.

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briggsbhoyPosted on11:34 am - May 15, 2013


Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:01

Does adding a 29 minutes video of The Vital Spark make your piece the longest ever !

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CastofThousandsPosted on11:42 am - May 15, 2013


thebasharmilesteg says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 09:29

“Well let’s take a theoretical publicly-listed company which has been put together for the simple purpose to allow a few well-healed individuals to get even richer. Thousands of ordinary investors may have been persuaded to put a few hundred or thousand of their own cash into the company. If that company later folds and the principals disappear to the Cayman Islands with their loot while the ordinary investor is left with nothing…”.

————-

Reminds me of ‘Farepak’, the Christmas savings scheme that went bust leaving many very ordinary people out of pocket. A scheme backed by BOS, whose business practices, including lending vast sums to SDM, are now seen to be utterly misguided. So much of the financial dealings before the ‘bust’ of 2007/8 were like a Ponzi scheme where people piled in hoping that even if the business model was crap, in a rising market, money would appear from somewhere.

In a falling market however…

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SquigglePosted on11:43 am - May 15, 2013


neepheid says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 09:57

Note this penultimate paragraph for future reference.

“Please confirm therefore, by return, that you have forwarded a copy of this Letter before Action to Field Fisher Waterhouse LLP and Cenkos Securities Plc.”

This post from the previous blog lies at the heart of my scepticism regarding the stuff supplied by the shy, demure, but oh so alluring Charlotte. Has the sender (presumably a solicitor) ran out of parchment, quill pens and postage stamps, that they have to ask the recipient to forward a legal document to named professional outfits? And then confirm by return? Maybe in the age of Dickens. But in 2012? Really? It makes absolutely no sense to me.

My suspicion is that this paragraph was drafted by a journalist with no knowledge of business or legal matters, but who reckons they can turn out a nice sounding phrase. Any candidates?

Of course I may be totally wrong.

———————————————————-

It is not unusual when party A is placing party B on notice to ask (or advise) them to notify others – particularly if ‘others’ might be acting to insure or indemnify party B. This is usually required as these types of protection usually have a requirement that the ‘insured’ (for want of a better word to describe party B) notifies those providing the ‘cover’ as soon as they are aware of the liklihood of action or claim against them. In this way party A keeps the hook firmly in party B by reminding them that they should advise anyone else connected to, or acting for party B.

I don’t find this paragraph unusual at all and have seen differing versions of it before. But, in the context I describe it raises the question of what the realtionship between FFW & CSplc was with those that received the letter.

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wottpiPosted on11:44 am - May 15, 2013


I keep going back to my days working in a large organisation where it is nigh on impossible to keep things quiet be that management moves to re-organise / make redundancies to office affairs.

If there are issues in the board room at Ibrox, we will hear about them if there are serious enough. i.e beyond what can be viewed as normal infighting in any business.

If there are further tapes and info from Craig Whyte about who he met and what they said, we will hear about them one day.

One day accounts will have to be published.

At some point someone will blab or it will be raised in a court somewhere.

If we are luckiy they will go to the MSM or write a book.

However I think some folk are clutching at straws hoping for another day of jelly and ice cream.

I feel that the internal investigation will merely say move along nothing to see here and they will call Whyte’s Bluff.

Sorry to be party pooper but my guess is that it just going to be a long drawn out saga for the closed season with not a lot happening.

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calumcrofterPosted on11:46 am - May 15, 2013


Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:01

Chust sublime.

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broganrogantrevinoandhoganPosted on11:49 am - May 15, 2013


Briggsbhoy

Yes it probably does!!!

I only wanted the first couple of minutes where Dan McPhail repeats the word “Furtive” a number of times– but I am technologically challenged on the editing stakes.

However, the whole thing is still very funny.

If you are looking for a short laugh try this;– the latest from the guys in the next room to me

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briggsbhoyPosted on11:56 am - May 15, 2013


Re: John Daly joining The Rangers !

I have mixed thoughts on this one. On one hand I think well ( if true) that has finally killed the last of the mud one can throw at them on their signing policy and on the other hand I think oh dear I’ll not be able to berate them with that line about no R.O.I players.

With regards the player joining The Rangers I wondering what his motivation is, is it

1) Money: If we are to believe all I read on here about the possible financial Armageddon that awaits of The Rangers then how can they afford such a player
or
2) Making History: Does he want to be known as the first R.O.I player to play for the team. How will the Tango Brigade react to this and especially the supporters on the Shankhill Road?

Ambition surely cannot be a factor in any players mind that joins The Rangers at this present moment and time. Will they win any cups ? I doubt it. Will they win their division ? likely so he has a medal. Will there be wonderful overseas trip for prestigious glamour ties? I doubt it. Did his former team mate at United Mr Sandza tell him how wonderful his new employer was? I doubt it.

So what is the motivation? I conclude it can be nothing more than cash, a final pay day, a last Hurrah.

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briggsbhoyPosted on12:02 pm - May 15, 2013


BRHT

Brilliant, I’m pissin myself, cheers.

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youtawknabootPosted on12:08 pm - May 15, 2013


BRTH..thanks.
A poison cougar from Huddersfield…quality, that made me hee haw….a lot !!!

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ecobhoyPosted on12:10 pm - May 15, 2013


briggsbhoy says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:56

So what is the motivation? I conclude it can be nothing more than cash, a final pay day, a last Hurrah.
================================================================

Well he’ll be in good company along with 99% of fellow footballers and the rest of the UK population 🙂

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tomtomPosted on12:11 pm - May 15, 2013


I’m not for a minute suggesting this is his plan but what if after a few months at Ibrox John Daly has suffered a high, or in fact any, level of sectarian abuse. Despite their pleas the club is unable to prevent this abuse. He walks out on the club. Could he claim constructive dismissal and get his contract paid up in full?

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paulsatimPosted on12:15 pm - May 15, 2013


briggsbhoy says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:56

Maybe he’ll wear his United top to keep the tangos happy!

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paulsatimPosted on12:17 pm - May 15, 2013


tomtomaswell says:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 12:11

Maybe SFA would step in and fine them like UEFA do………………..

aye, right!

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