The allegedly left-leaning Red Roar blog has passed before my inspection recently, and the only conclusion that could be reached was that “The Red Roar may not have any connection with The Great Guido or any other Tory misinformation purveyor, but it treads the same boards”. Moreover, it was all too obvious that “The Great Guido and The Red Roar are linked - maybe deniably, but linked they are”.
Barry Gardiner MP
The perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog had started promoting the Red Roar, talking up its thinly veiled attack on the Labour leadership as if it were a mainstream centre-left outlet. It isn’t: the Red Roar inhabits the same world as the Fawkes blog; indeed, it is right now attacking Left New Media site The Canary, calling it a Fake News outlet (the Fawkes mob know all about peddling Fake News).
But the Red Roar did eventually have something it could claim as original, a claim that Labour’s shadow international development secretary Barry Gardiner had made a series of embarrassing remarks at a meeting in Brussels. “Gardiner: Good Friday Agreement is ‘a shibboleth’ in Brexit negotiations”. Also, “He went on to rubbish the six tests set by shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer as ‘meaningless’ and unsuitable as a measure of whether Labour should vote for or against the Tory Brexit deal”.
This sounded interesting, but there was no citation accompanying the post. Now, a recording has surfaced, and it is being enthusiastically promoted by … The Great Guido! To no surprise at all, the Fawkes claim “Gardiner Caught Blatantly Lying” was authored by teaboy Alex “Billy Liar” Wickham, for whom “blatantly lying” is a way of life.
And there are two points to make about what the Red Roar calls the “Full Transcript” of Gardiner’s remarks. One, there is no sign whatever of the “rubbishing” of the six tests set out by Kier Starmer. Is there another recording on the way? If not, far from backing up their original claim, the Red Roar’s latest revelation shows they were the ones fibbing.
Milk, no sugar, hold the smears, thanks
Plus, two, the Gardiner response to the Red Roar does not say he did not use the S-word. He said the Red Roar claim was “nonsense”. Gardiner did not say he did not use the word “shibboleth”. The Fawkes post does not contain one jot of evidence to stand up the assertion that Gardiner was “blatantly lying”. So when do we get to see it?
One thing is certain: that question is not going to be answered by the Fawkes teaboy, whose post merely states - wrongly - that Gardiner made the remarks initially attributed to him (there is no evidence put forward on Starmer and his six tests, remember), and then tells readers what they are supposed to think: “He has been caught blatantly lying and now has to fight for his job”. Worked well with Corbyn and Jewdas, that one, didn’t it Alex?
But good of the Fawkes rabble to confirm what I said earlier - the Red Roar is linked to the Fawkes mob. Their intervention also sounds a caution to all those media outlets - to its shame, the Guardian is going along with them - who are taking this latest attack on Labour at face value. The available facts do not support the claims made.
Sure, Barry Gardiner may have said something that contradicts Labour policy. But don’t take the Fawkes rabble on trust, press people. Do some journalism instead.