The choice of guests for the paper review on The Andy Marr Show™ attracts consistent criticism, some of it warranted, what with mercenary pundit Isabel Oakeshott, people from Spiked and right-leaning lobby groups, Amanda Bloody Platell, Julia Hartley Dooda, serially dishonest Spectator editor Fraser Nelson, the loathsome Toby Young, Nigel “Thirsty” Farage and appalling bigot Iain Martin all featuring of late.
But one group never features, and that is the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog. In this, the Marr Show has been implacable: neither Staines, nor the odious flannelled fool Master Harry Cole, nor former teaboy Alex “Billy Liar” Wickham, nor former sandwich monitor Ross Kempsall, nor the current less than dynamic duo Tom Harwood and Hugh Bennett.
Jackie Ashley - regular Fawkes target
One suspects that Staines, or someone on his behalf, made a personal and derogatory accusation against Marr, and that has resulted in the black ball not only going in the bag, but remaining in there. But what is more certain is the amont of bitterness going the other way. This goes back at least ten years, as Zelo Street regulars will know.
Master Cole bashing Ms Ashley ...
Back in 2009, it was Master Cole, still running his piss-poor Tory Bear blog, who, soon after the phone hacking scandal had first been publicised, ran a supremely intemperate post titled “Jackie Ashley Talks Bollocks Shock”, where her suggestion that Andy Coulson may be a casualty of the fallout from the affair was haughtily dismissed. Cole called phone hacking “This minor embarrassment from a few years back”.
... and getting it totally wrong
He ended by telling that he “cannot wait until Coulson is running the media show in less than a year and these morons are cast out into the waste heap where they belong”. That won’t have gone down well with Marr. But some people never learn, and so today’s Fawkes rabble have once again gone after Ms Ashley.
Still bitter today, O Great Guido?
They tell readers “Jackie Ashley, also known as, Mrs Andrew Marr, has been given a nice little quango job: acting as the ‘independent member’ of the panel choosing the next trustee of the Theatres Trust quango. On the Whitehall website there is a blank space under ‘political activity’ and ‘notes’. Is this entirely truthful?” And there is more.
No Fawkes paper review presence - a presenter mourns
“Ashley was for years a nakedly pro-Labour columnist in the Guardian (her dad was a Labour MP). And is she really that interested in theatre? Our man in the stalls says: ‘I’ve never seen her at the theatre.’” Reporting on the Labour Party, and being the daughter of a Labour MP, does not make one pro-Labour. And the Fawkes rabble doesn’t have a “man in the stalls”, unless he means Gents’ toilets. This is just a gratuitous smear piece.
Still, good of The Great Guido to admit the frustration at being shut out from the Official BBC Sofa. Whatever they sup chez Fawkes, it’s become more bitter of late.
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