March 31st, 2012

Staite v Sunday Times

Ed Staite is not taking the coming Sunday Times sting lying down. He has this morning published the written proposal he made to the undercover journalists posing as “Global Zenith”. He pitched £40,000 for an “Issues and Crisis Preparedness Plan” which looks pretty standard spinner’s stuff. The way Staite is handling the sting with his pre-buttal shows he is good in a crisis…


66 Comments

  1. 1
    I don't need no doctor says:

    The Sunday Times is in a right Staite.

    Like

    • 6
      the staite of the nation says:

      No popcorn grabbing stories today then.

      Like

      • 11

        This Ed is out of the top class drawer.

        I wish him good luck but he hardly needs it.

        Like

        • 16
          felix the sockpuppet says:

          Which makes a lovely change from comments that come straight out of the sock drawer.

          Like

          • That would have been a bloody good point in my heyday but, with internationalisation and the Star Wars and Hitchhiker generation coming to prominence, anything is possible. Are you giving your age away just a tad? ;-)

            Like

        • 27
          Willl spin for food says:

          I agree he’s top class, but that doesn’t mean that he is quite out of the woods yet.

          He’s staked everything on this; his documents are reasonable enough, well put together (and this was partly my field), and it’s to his credit that this account squares with what he’s said rather than the Telegraph summaries and the strange noises coming so far from the Sunday Times.

          However, the documents and the proposals aren’t the crux of the story, and suggests that the seeking of these was the distraction from their real intent. I guess it will all come down to the verbal exchanges; and the Sunday Times will have extensive transcripts from the tapes and the film. They are pretty adept in sting operations; the way they approach the early exchanges in such conversations is critical and relies on the subject being unaware of the proper context of their questions.

          If he is clear, as he says he is, much will depend on

          a) how meticulous he was in the conversations, especially when he’s trying to make them as clients feel relaxed and inviting their trust; and

          b) what they have recorded themselves as asking and what, specifically, he counters with and suggests when they enquire – openly or not – about access and influence.

          I don’t think he’ll lack for clients if he comes out of this one ok, but first he has to survive the weekend …

          Like

          • Interesting. I used to do comparable work but for technical services in the banking field two decades and more ago. However, the process is immediately recognisable to me and are well set out and logically constructed. The fee amounts involved were very similar to these, so probably at a somewhat greater level once inflation is taken into account.

            I never had any disputes or even questions about my fees from any client, most of which came back repеatedly so the sums quoted for his work seem quite reasonable for the services offered to me.

            The field of spin is clearly a different story and becomes problematic once the self-referentials come into play. However, as a novice in this area, I see this person staking everything on the evidence. Now I do not know him from Adam (apart from the fact he wears clothes.) But part of my job used to be in making predictions. So I will make one here on the basis of what I have seen:

            Ed will see off the media on this whatever they have recorded.

            Like

          • I know what I'm doing says:

            How the hell could he be taken in by a media outfit called “Global Zenith”? – they might as well have named it Hoaxmaster 2.

            Like

          • That would have been a bloody good point in my heyday but, with internationalisation and the Star Wars and Hitchhiker generation coming to prominence, anything is possible. Are you giving your age away just a tad? ;-)

            *Oops! right place now*

            Like

          • Willl spin for food says:

            … Interesting, Schrodinger, & I think I concur with your prediction.

            If they had absolutely killer material, I would have expected the ST by now to have stayed completely silent until publication or to have started feeding lines here and there to set it up. They’ve done neither and were obviously completely wrong-footed by Strait’s instant rebuttal, up and at ‘em and sustained defence in support of his activities. It probably also escaped their attention that he’s not a member of the party, either.

            Given that the they’ve emitted nothing yet except squirming noises your money would probably be safe. They’ll have to run something though; and the dilemma is that now they’ve defended the corner, the more they egg it up, the stronger it will need to be otherwise the loss of face will be massive. Even if he’s not out of the woods, he’s played a blinder so far.

            The timing is just as fascinating. Given the flash-to-bang of this at six weeks or so, these were stories commissioned when Murdoch was facing deeper Leveson murk than he had expected and this might just be understood as the first wave of push back on the political establishment, hitting politicos where they’re most institutionally (as opposed to reputationally) vulnerable, party finance.

            I would expect more to come, and for insurance I would bet on this kind of investigative journalism having being repeated across the parties and also taking in UKIP (but probably not the SNP) and other institutions.

            I’m prompted to wonder what else they’ve got, and I wonder in particular what they’ve got in mind for the blockbuster Easter weekend edition …

            Like

          • Anonymous says:

            @Willl (if you ever come back to see this!)

            It seems pretty clear to me that you know your game well. I follow you completely.

            My approach in your field of expertise is purely intuitive but is backed by the ability to read behavioural activity from my former trade.

            The pattern that so often sets in (with all walks of life) is the formulaic. The Telegraph and S Times have done spectacularly well with some of their recent exposés.

            The danger is that they become overconfident. They over-reach themselves. A young reporter sees a short-cut to the top end. An editor gets taken in (for whatever purpose, can’t imagine…) The sting is mounted. There is a space to fill. Nothing else looks half as good. A lot has been invested. Bad reasons for doing things get caught up in the flow of events.

            Mission creep happens in the military, the media, politics, business and just about everywhere else.

            That is what I believe I am seeing here.

            Like

          • The Anonymong @ 10:30pm is me.

            I had not noticed that my browser had spilt my moniker.

            Like

          • Willl spin for food says:

            Hmmm. I don’t think it is mission creep, even if it does seem lazy fishing-expedition journalism. The problem with that is that it is an incredibly successful technique and it’s no wonder that the ST use it regularly. It successfully exposes wrongdoing and hypocrisy and, let’s say that there had been justifiable material – as there was the previous week, the means are justified. Classic PR would tell you that the only way to avoid this kind of sting is to be uber vigilant about contacts’ credentials or, easier, not to be doing anything dodgy in the first place.

            Stait has had a gift handed to him – his organisation has been destruct tested and survived – not only intact but enhanced; something pretty unheard of in that murky world. If I were he, I would be tempted to call off the dogs, send Heidi some champagne and an offer of lunch in the summer when things quieten down. He does not need to make an enemy of the ST; he’s proved his point, demonstrated some very nifty footwork and he’s made his reputation.

            Like others, I’d be interested to know the context of a remark attributed to him alluding to a ‘career threatening misjudgement’ in an email, and he ought to reckon with his professional enemies having the option of talking to the ST themselves. I think what’s really taken the sting out of the story is that, whatever he has said or done, he has no direct links to the party any longer and it becomes much harder editorially to run with if that isn’t there.

            Assuming he’s as clear as he currently looks, I’d expect no 10 to be interested in how he’s played this and wondering whether there are lessons to be learned there.

            Like

          • Anonymous says:

            My particular use of the term mission creep was intended to indicate the triumph of process over objective. My theory is that we are all susceptible to this. We learn our own little tricks, or steal others from them, and then use them for some other situation where the parallels appеar to exist but actually fall short in some way.

            I accept your characterisation of lazy fishing-expedition journalism but to me there is something more at work here – the lazy part is to be found in sloppy thinking.

            When I started work in the mid 1960s, on the very lowest rung in the bank, I was taught accuracy before speed, speed will follow. That has always stayed with me as I rose to board level (retired now – at least from that.) It is as if nowadays, the complete reverse is taught, not only in banking but everywhere else.

            But your comment about how Staite might play it shows that I would never have succeeded in your game. I perfecty understand why you say what you do and anyway we are talking around the edges of politics in which these things are normal.

            What makes this interesting are the twists and turns that are left unexplained. Like you, I have a seed or two planted. We will see what, if anything, comes up.

            Clearly our host will shut down this page at some stage but I want to say that I have enjoyed our discussion and wish to thank you for improving my knowlede in this area of shifting sands. Maybe we will spеak again if and when the facts become better known and see how our hunches have played out.

            Like

        • 65
          Willl spin for food says:

          A pleasure. Have greatly enjoyed it.

          Like

      • 34
        The TRUE State of the Nation says:

        Alcohol banned in Bradford
        Kuffars have to wear designated armbands
        Road blocks
        Pass Laws to be itroduced in Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Londonistan
        Statues of British “imperialists” to be repaced by heroic heroes of the Bradford Spring
        Jews to be banned from all professional & public employment
        BBC to enforce indoctrination of masses
        Capital punishment restored
        Christian churches to be forceably closed
        Cathedrals to be replaced by mosques
        200,000 person mosque to be build on site of St Pauls Cathedral
        All British history to be revised
        London to twin with Gaza, Luton with Tehran
        Queen to be exiled
        All Hard Left activists to join sonderkammando (military police)
        Iranian Revolutionary Guard “invited” to commander former “British” army

        Fiction?

        Like

    • 21
      To Be Fair says:

      To be fair its just as well this Government have someone who is proving good in a crisis as they seem to be adept at creating them.

      Like

  2. 2
    I don't need no doctor says:

    Ed MilibLand is leading the labour hypocriticalites into the wilderness.

    Like

    • 37
      Cynical-old-bag says:

      Is he?

      I thought they were already there.

      Like

      • 61
        Anonymous says:

        Then they’ll be joining the Dems there.

        There’ll be many more lost deposits at the next election, plus gutless tories unwilling to boot out Dave losing another election.

        Like

  3. 3
    Messy says:

    This is getting messy

    Like

  4. 4
    I don't need no doctor says:

    It’s all mine, all mine. Three in a row. Who’s the daddy?

    Like

  5. 5
    I don't need no doctor says:

    Messy, you have buggered up my three in a row.

    Like

  6. 7
    Joss Sayin says:

    So fucking what!

    Like

  7. 11
    Ah! Monika says:

    Er, did you mean Bradford? George Galloway faces backlash after tweeting about BLACKBURN victory

    Like

  8. 18
    tosser watch says:

    What a spastic.

    Like

  9. 22
    Stinkfinger says:

    Meanwhile,back on the farm…While the press,Spads,spin doctors and Politicians run around sniffing each others bottoms the country has gone to shit.
    I can see now why the Germans voted for a bloke like fucking Hitler.

    Like

    • 31
      Show Biz for ugly people says:

      An order order comments classic

      You couldn’t make it up…..

      Like

    • 32
      Westminster Has Failed Us says:

      And people in Bradford vote for Gorgeous George

      Like

      • 44
        Synic says:

        At least Gorgeous George is a character — unlike all the PPE ex Spad self serving MP Hunts crawling up the Westminster greasy pole.

        Like

    • 43
      Synic says:

      Don’t forget Gorgeous Gideon is still running the deficit at £4000 per second.
      Isn’t it about time Merv the Perv Q.E. magicked another £50bn out of his keyboard?
      Vote for Weimar!

      Like

  10. 25
    Penfold says:

    So, some hacks assume a false identity, create a fictitious company and then set out to entrap an individual.
    Nothing new, been done thousands of times.
    Has Staite been a naughty boy in the past to justify this measure?
    No?, thought so, so just a vicious set-up designed to score political points and give Murdoch and News Intl some petty little gain before meeting again with Leveson.
    This sort of deliberate entrapment without any good or justified cause should be illegal.

    Mind you Staite has come out this as a smooth and fast operator, showing proactive skills…………..let’s hope he gains.!!

    Like

  11. 29
    Show Biz for ugly people says:

    Yes, because he was really going to create an invoice for “influence peddling and foreign donation laundering” wasn’t he

    At least he has Guido fully whipped.

    Like

  12. 36
    Cato Street Conspirator says:

    I know you shouldn’t comment on people’s appearance, but… Dark night, alley, meet, wouldn’t want to, and all that.

    Like

  13. 40
    hacked off says:

    Obviously Staite is well aware of the difference between Hailey’s attempted comet and the goatscheese eminating from Heidi. Whether he will lay Rupert bare is debatable.
    Where have all genuine investigative newspaper reporters disappeared to, when only subversion and sting operations have become the norm today.

    Like

  14. 47
    Jimmy says:

    Documents look kosher, so why did he refer to a “career threatening misjudgment” in the begging letter he sent you?

    Like

  15. 49
    TransSaptial Apex says:

    Speaking on behalf of our subsidiary Global Zenith we apologise profusely for a schholboy attempt to elicit information in a blatantly amateurish way . Certain you all may be that an in-house ” independent enquiry ” chaired by the MD of Global Zenith is being set up as we speak . Full details of its findings expected at approximately the date of Armageddon and will of course be circulated to all interested parties .

    Ruperto

    Like

  16. 50
    the general public says:

    looks more like damage limitation…….he would be more impressive if he could avoid a crisis in the first place!

    Like

  17. 54
    Yahoo Answers ASKS says:

    Guido . When a comment is under the cudgels of ” .. awaiting moderation .. ” ( which itself is a euphemism for the modern day version of the Papal Index — as opposed to the Paypal Index ) does this mean it is shown to the general collection of fraternal eyeballs for the period of its ” moderation ” . Or is it for sight of the instigator only?

    I appreciate you cannot reply to any such questions because you have as a basic prerequisite moderated yourself from engaging in anything remotely resembling interactive discussion .

    So I suppose I shall just have to put it up on the real Yahoo Answers page .

    Like

  18. 55
    You're all idiots! says:

    this petrol business was handled quite well. note Unite has backed down. well played.

    Like

    • 56
      petrolhead says:

      surely you mean – WELL PAID – we are all paying the price for this lousy fucking fuel nonsense – £147.99 by me FFS – that doesn’t include heating oil which has rocketed to £700 per 1000litres

      Like

  19. 62
    Dear Marge says:

    My politics are very much left of centre, and yet I fully support the EDL’s protests against the Islamification of Europe.
    Is it wrong to harbour these thoughts?

    Like


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John McTernan told Channel 4 News

“You can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs, you don’t win in politics without breaking legs.”



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Without Predujice

Darling

What time will dinner be ready this evening?

Yours

Rob Wilson MP

In the interests of me I am placing a copy of this email in the public domain.


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