Sunday, April 12, 2009

Maguire Missed the Scoop Under His Nose

Guido’s Westminster Arms drinking buddy, Kevin Maguire, is kind enough to shower praise on “an old-fashioned scoop for the newish media. So hat’s off to my old mate Guided Fawkes. And I admire his ability to spin himself as well as his story.”

Guided?  Only one of us has been guided by Damian McBride’s spin.  Funny thing is, Maguire could have had the front page scoop himself.  After all – despite today’s disingenuous spin from Liam Byrne* that this was a private matter between only Damian and Derek – Maguire was very much in the know.  He could have had the scoop about “Red Rag” himself, months ago.  Guido has been calling Maguire all evening to ask him why he didn’t run the scoop himself, or why didn’t he advise his mate Damian against the whole idea?  What a scoop Kevin could have there, eh?

Strangely Kev isn’t taking calls from Guido or any of his Lobby friends.  When Guido texted our Kev a few questions, someone else called back claiming that he had a missed call from Guido.  James Lyons, Kevin’s Mirror mate was the caller.  Odd.

Still, no doubt some of Kevin’s fellow Lobby journalists, ruthless investigators that they are, will get the facts from Maguire. When did he know?  What did he know? Isn’t that what proper journalists are supposed to ask?

*Liam Byrne is not very polite is he?  We already know he is a shit to work for, however when Guido said a cheery “hello Liam” to him in the Sky studio yesterday he just stood there and stared at yours truly, silently, (a bit weirdly to be honest).  Maybe his morning soup was cold.

Armando Iannucci Foresaw All

You can just imagine the panic in Downing Street on Friday with Tom Watson having conversations exactly like those in this clip, telling Damian and Derek to undo what he doesn’t know about and wouldn’t even remember if he did. The excuse lines used by Damian and Derek come straight from episode 6 of The Thick of It - including “this email was never intended to be seen by anyone but the recipient”.

Draper of course added to the real comedy with his defining Channel 4 News soundbite yesterday – “I wasn’t lying on purpose”. Armando Iannucci’s fictional version was “I unintentionally lied. Unknowingly might have told an untruth”.

Guido particularly likes the line “Malcolm Tucker has left the building”Damian McBride has left the building.

+++ Liam Byrne Just Effectively Sacked Draper Live on Sky +++

Questioned repeatedly he disowned Dolly, he denied Dolly headed up Labour’s online operation.  Byrne denied he had any official role in Labour.

So why did they launch LabourList in Labour HQ with Peter Mandelson and Dougie Alexander in attendance?  Why did Gordon Brown invite Derek Draper to Chequers?  What did they discuss – Strictly Come Dancing?

UPDATE : Alastair Campbell has just disowned McBride and Draper, with a nothing to do with me  guv dismissal: “I barely know Mr McBride. I was vaguely aware of him being around the Treasury when I was in Number 10, and vaguely aware that he was closer to the Charlie Whelan school of strategic communications than my own. (I’m aware we tend to get lumped together in some sections, but I know the differences, even if they don’t.)”

UPDATE II : Clarke has just called for Draper and Whelan to consider their position.  His was the voice that put the final nail in the coffin for McBride.  He obviously hasn’t finished with that hammer…

Draper : “Absolutely Totally Brilliant Damian”Brown : “There Is No Place in Politics for the Dissemination or Publication of Material of This Kind”

The News of the World reveals the smears – full story here.

Draper has lied from the beginning about this whole affair. His candid honest response to receiving these smears – which he wanted to publish as soon as possible – was to tell their poisonous author that they were “brilliant”.  Surely decent Labour-minded people have had enough of him?  He is an electoral liability who should be cast adrift. In the words of Gordon Brown, there is absolutely no place in politics for Derek.


Seen Elsewhere

What Will Happen if Scots Leave? | David Aaronovitch
Why Are Radicals Like Carswell Leaving Tories? | BBC
Danczuk: Rotherham Abuse Imported From Pakistan | Telegraph
Ashya King Case Shows How Authorities Get it Wrong | ConHome
The Carswell Show | Jon Craig
Cops Seized Journalist’s Phone to Out Whistleblower | Press Gazette
Chuka’s £2,500 Tax Avoidance Donation | Times
Another BBC Stitch Up? | David Keighley
Divided, Pessimistic Tories Expect Defeat | Alex Wickham
Labour Suspends Rotherham Council Members | Sky
PM Used Terror Crisis to Deflect From Carswell | Rachel Sylvester


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George Osborne rejects the Ice Bucket Challenge from Ed Balls:

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We also need Zil lanes.


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