After the IEA, which is still claiming to be an educational charity, was given a formal warning by the Charity Commission - and long overdue it was - it was inevitable that their supporters would try and mount a fightback. Moreover, it was inevitable that when the attempted fightback came, it would take the same form as the EU referendum Leave campaign backlash - “the other lot were doing it too”.
And as the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog were in the vanguard of claims about the various Remain campaigns, which they backed up with precisely zero evidence, it should surprise no-one that it is the Fawkes blog which has today pointed the finger at the Resolution Foundation. Because the Resolution Foundation is too left-leaning for their liking, and has charitable status.
Under the heading “Resolution Foundation Flouts Charity Commission’s New Political Ruling” the Fawkes massive tells readers “The Resolution Foundation, the welfare reform focused think tank which has charitable status, hosted an event this morning at its Westminster offices on the subject of ‘British politics beyond Brexit: Where are Labour heading?’” The Fawkes folks are not happy about this event.
Why so? “Speakers for the event were all Labour supporters, MPs or former staffers; Jon Trickett, Shadow Cabinet Office Minister, Bridget Phillipson, Labour MP for Houghton and Sunderland South, Ayesha Hazarika, former Labour Party special adviser, Stephen Bush, the Labour supporting New Statesman’s political editor, Torsten Bell, Director of the Resolution Foundation and former Ed Miliband adviser when he was leader of the Labour Party”. Just because Bush writes for the Staggers does not mean he backs Labour.
Nor does Ms Hazarika’s previous status mean she does, either. Yet The Great Guido asserts “They all obviously advocate voting for the Labour Party”. They obviously don’t: this is a logic leap in the great tradition of those other Fawkes friends, the so-called Taxpayers Alliance. It’s an attempt to make the evidence fit the predetermined line.
Still, the Fawkes rabble continue to insist that this breaches “the regulatory warning recently issued to the Institute of Economic Affairs, which said it had breached regulations stipulating that it is unacceptable if ‘at events, the audience is only addressed by people with the same views on a topic’”. But they haven’t proved that point.
No matter, on they plough: “Today’s Resolution Foundation event was clearly political and not clearly related to to their charitable objectives”. Rather a lot of “clearly” going on here. But they’re serious: “Guido has contacted the Charity Commission to see if they will be warning Torsten likewise in an even-handed* way … *The Charity Commission’s duty to act consistently and fairly is one of their principles”. Nice little threat to finish.
The Charity Commission should take the Fawkes fake news as fact and do the bidding of Staines and his pals. Or rather, they should take this one and bin it. Still, good to see that the Fawkes rabble is being consistent. They pitched a wagon load of bullshit claiming Remain cheated and got nowhere; now they are en route to do the same again.
Still, good to know The Great Guido still supports cheating - providing his pals do it. Another fine mess, once again.
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