The people at the Liverpool Echo know who John Ashton is, as they told earlier this week: “A former regional public health director from Liverpool, Professor Ashton had been heavily critical of the government's slow response to the growing coronavirus crisis on the programme - warning that the lack of testing and preparation was 'complacent' and calling for social distancing measures to be brought in rapidly”. There was more.
Prof John Ashton ...
... the subject under discussion ...
... and someone who wants to smear him over it
then told “Guido has long taken it upon himself to call out broadcasters for having ‘experts’ appear, while failing to inform viewers of any party political biases they may have”. This is the blog whose staff regularly appear as pundits and do not have their party political bias notified to the audience.
Who’s behind the anonymous complaints about John Ashton? That we do not know. But it’s clear whose smear campaign started the ball rolling. I’ll just leave that one there.
[UPDATE 1330 hours: right on cue, the Fawkes blog has done it again.
After an A&E staff nurse appeared on the BBC sharing his concerns over a lack of available Personal Protective Equipment, The Great Guido has sneered that he is allegedly a "Socialist", a "Unite activist", "Anti-Brexit", "Anti-Israel" and "Fights the Tories hard".
None of those invalidates what he said to the Beeb. This is the level to which debate around the Covid-19 pandemic has sunk, and it's dangerous. The virus isn't going to discriminate based on political preferences, and a lack of PPE is either happening, or it's not. It's not something to be dismissed merely because the political orientation of the source is inconvenient.
Paul Staines and his pals are not credible as contributors to this debate. No change there, then]