The old adage that something which looks too good to be true probably is too good to be true was never more aptly applied to the latest alleged exposé to come out of the equally alleged centre-left Red Roar website, on which Zelo Street has already passed adverse comment (see HERE and HERE). The claim concerns last year’s General Election.
The headline, “REVEALED Jeremy Corbyn planned ‘fake news factory’ at No 10 … War room plan shows the Labour leader would have appointed Downing Street team of of ultra-loyal Corbynistas had he been elected in 2017”, tells you all you need to know.
There is more. “A war room plan obtained by The Red Roar shows the Labour leader would have been surrounded by an inner circle of ultra-loyal Corbynistas if he’d won the election in June 2017 - many of whom were not Labour party members before he stood for leader”. Using a derogatory term for Corbyn loyalists. Just like the mainstream press.
But the dead giveaway here is this paragraph: “The plan also shows Corbyn was preparing to set up a fake news factory at the heart of government by handing key jobs at No 10 to alt-left bloggers Steve Walker, Aaron Bastani and Eoin Clarke. It suggests that Corbyn intended to bypass the ‘mainstream media’ in government by handing considerable power to a small coterie of fanatical bloggers who have helped him to communicate his policies and ideas, which he believes are deliberately distorted by a hostile press”.
Let’s take this nice and slowly. One, the only people who claim that New Left Media outlets are “Fake News” are the press establishment and their hangers-on. Two, there would be no point whatever bringing New Left Media people into Downing Street - they would be most effective carrying on as before. And three, look who’s buying this one.
First to defend The Red Road has been the Mail on Sunday’s not even slightly celebrated blues artiste Whinging Dan Hodges. The iron rule where Desperate Dan is concerned is that the opposite stance to his is generally true. Then has come the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines. Worse, the Guido Fawkes blog, which has included The Red Roar’s post in its “Seen Elsewhere” list, is not convinced that the claims are true.
Hence their adding a question mark, producing “Corbyn’s Downing Street Team?”
Worse still, the Red Roar’s article is stuffed full of the kind of sneering soundbites that the Fawkes rabble and their press pals have made their own. Hence Andrew Murray is called a “class traitor”, Seumas Milne a “red princeling”, Jon Lansman is wrongly called the “owner” of Momentum (and don’t forget he attended a private school), and Paul Mason “seems to be permanently in the throes of a mid-life crisis”. My arse.
Another giveaway that this is not a real story comes from those documents on “10 Downing Street” headed paper. How could Jezza and his team get hold of those without actually being in power? Then comes that alleged media operation.
Someone clearly thinks that splashing Steve Walker’s photo across the page is a jolly clever wheeze. But the idea that such an act would wind up the Skwawkbox man is drivel. It is, though, the received wisdom in the right-leaning press. And chez Fawkes.
Once again, it’s another giveaway to suggest New Left Media sources will be brought into Downing Street. That’s like saying if London’s formerly very occasional Mayor Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson won the Tory leadership, he’d have an office in No 10 set aside for The Great Guido. He wouldn’t offer it, and they wouldn’t take it.
Otherwise, the Red Roar trowels on how allegedly “hard left” many of those it identifies are, sneers at their outside interests, drips with hostility at their union connections, and otherwise pretends that there is something strange about those who are close to the Labour leadership at present accompanying Corbyn into Downing Street in the event of his winning the next General Election. This last point is total bunk.
There was no problem with (say) Alastair Campbell accompanying Tone into Downing Street when Labour won in 1997. And although Big Al maybe doesn’t agree with all of Seumas Milne’s stances, his being the appropriate person to go into No 10 with his boss is probably not one of them. Every part of The Red Roar story comes up fake.
And there is one last clincher: guess whose name is missing from this alleged story? Yes, there is no mention of Owen Jones. Why is that? Simples. Because, in the established press view, a hare set running by the Fawkes massive, is that Corbyn and his team “despise” Jones. Except they don’t. They really don’t.
As Matt Zarb-Cousin put it, “This is so obviously fake, the Red Roar have been completely done over”. Or as James Mills told Desperate Dan Hodges, “This blog post is about as accurate as one of your columns, pal”. Quite so. Another one for the bin.
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