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Tuesday 2 April 2013

Guido Fawked – Five Weeks Late

The perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog are once again unhappy about Private Eye magazine. But this time it’s serious: they want to see editor Ian Hislop resign. And the latest Fawkes attack signs off “Guido is hearing more and more moaning about l’enfant terrible turned BBC six figure game keeper. A subject he shall return to”.

What the new Fawkes masters would like to stop

Sadly, Staines and his pals are hearing no such thing, well, not anything that would impact on the job security of Master Emmanuel Strobes, that is. As I’ve observed previously, the Eye is selling more copies than at any time in its history. It’s long ago seen off satirical rivals like Punch, and its journalism is of a standard that puts most of the mainstream press to shame.

And that is at the root of Staines’ whingeing: Private Eye is truly independent of the Fourth Estate, and always has been. The Fawkes blog is not, having successively sold out either directly or indirectly to Richard Desmond, the Barclay Brothers, and Rupert Murdoch. And Staines is scared shitless of Paul Dacre. The Great Guido is no longer subversive, but utterly subservient.

Hence the Fawkes attacks on the Eye, which are as pointless as they are ineffective. From Staines’ pal Matthew “Gromit” Elliott asserting that the Fawkes blog had “almost killed off Private Eye”, they have also been so blatantly without foundation as to be mirth inducing. The latest effort is no better, mainly because a little examination reveals The Great Guido putting the ball in his own net once again.

Alongside the Fawkes blog assertion that the Eye’s content is “Best Before: Two Weeks Ago”, the post “Ingrams to Hislop: Time to Move On” refers to an interview given by former Eye editor Richard Ingrams to Press Gazette. The interview also reveals that Ingrams no longer has any formal connection with the Eye, and that his post-1986 title of Chairman was purely honorary.

And a little examination reveals that this interview was published not yesterday, or even last week, but on February 27. That’s almost five weeks ago. What was that about “two weeks out of date”? The Great Guido and his oh-so-nimble blog has been reduced to recycling five week old news. What a way to make a living – digging up old stories to suck up to your real bosses.

If Hislop were to leave the Eye, he’d do so on his own terms, and The Great Guido would have sweet jack to do with it. And right now, he’s going nowhere, which suits this particular longstanding Private Eye subscriber just fine.

Slow news day in subservient blog land, Fawkes people? Another fine mess, once again.

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