Guido Fawkes - a leaky conduit

I refer to the breaking story about a smear campaign at Number 10, and a series of scurrilous emails that have been intercepted by Paul Staines aka Guido Fawkes.

I can't decide whether Paul Staines is a rank amateur when it comes to breaking stories or that he is merely the victim of cyber-space communication speeds.
His outings on the MSM appear to confirm the former, being a combination of his inability to invoke a snappy answer and the high degree of editorial control exercised by the broadcaster. He comes across as a patsy and a puffball.

Woodward and Bernstein he is not, but then again their fastest communications tool was a payphone and an Underwood electric typewriter.

The problem with this story is that he has lost control of it, something a news organisation would anticipate and be able to redress.

Instead of a carefully orchestrated drip-drip of facts, subsequently rebutted, then proven to be true by further revelations, he has shot his bolt in one and allowed the opposition to get ahead and determine a robust rebuttal strategy.

What makes Guido/Staines interesting is his occasional good luck with sources who use him as a conduit. There is nothing clever about this; he is just lucky and it requires no skill to appear like a grand wizard of the cult of the black virgin. His application of this power is dismally inept.


AProlefrom1984 said...

How were the emails obtained? I suspect that could embarrass Guido and the Tories.
And what are these lurid allegations? In discussing Labour's attempt at smears, these could end up being discussed. Another own goal for the Tories possibly.

strapworld said...

I do agree with you, however he did not do that bad did he?

However, may I share something far more serious with you:-

Subject: Death penalty re-instated - eg if we riot against the EU?!

On 20th Feb 2008 a caucus meeting was held at the German Parliament in Munich to discuss the Lisbon Treaty.

[the European Union reform treaty, a.k.a. the Lisbon Treaty rejected by the voters of Ireland and before that rejected by the voters of France and Netherlands as the EU Constitution]

At this meeting a previously unmentioned paragraph was brought to light by Professor Schachtschneider, of the Humanities Faculty - University of Nuremberg.

Professor Schachtschneider, explained that the undisclosed paragraph means on ratification of the Lisbon Treaty the DEATH PENALTY will be reintroduced to Europe.

The Death Penalty will be applicable for the crimes of RIOTING, CIVIL UPHEAVAL and DURING WAR.

Professor Schachtschneider made the point that this clause is particularly outrageous as it had been cleverly hidden in a footnote of a footnote and would not have been detected by anyone other than an exceptional expert reader.

It is not in the treaty itself, but in a footnote, because with the European Union reform treaty, we accept also the European Union Charter, which says that there is no death penalty, and then it also has a footnote, which says, “except in the case of war, riots, upheaval” !!

When we are not at war, who will define riot and upheaval? Will a riot against membership of the EU now result in execution?
Even if you favour the death penalty the voters of the UK should be given a referendum on this treaty / constitution.

Did New Labour mention this ? ...No... because they claim to have never read the Treaty... fools.

Wrinkled Weasel said...

Thanks for spotting this Strapworld. It deserves a wider airing.

Mr. Musicology said...

Mr. Fawke's editorial respect was already in question, with the claims that he has only ever been a Tory Party mouthpiece. A cronie, wannabee, stooge, who was happy to take the rap, if they handed him their sleaze and leaks.

I think it's pretty obvious that he is well in league with the tory spin department, meaning his "blog" is little more than a right wing propoganda outlet.

In terms of the article, the tories have been using this blog, smear trick for about 3 years. Where innocent leaks, suddenly found themselves onto innocent blogs.

When the truth probably is that the blogs themselves, are tantamount to tory employees themselves.

So I don't think they can complain that Labour try the same tactics, with their red rag.

I do find it rather counterproductive. On the basis that most of the country now seem to be discussing which STD cameron actually has, and when the Labour party will release these embarrasing Osborne shots.

That and the fact that criminal proceedings will probably commence, in terms of the hacked e-mail accounts.

If there is found to be any links between the hacking, the tory party and staines, it could be Watergate mark 2

AProlefrom1984 said...

spot on Musicology.
word verification: revelin :-)

AProlefrom1984 said...

And well done, strapworld, I think you should publicise your discovery - it's terrifying. People don't actually know what the EU is up to. And what do our politicians discuss? Underwear and STDs. Shocking.

Mike Wood said...

Whilst I'm no fan of the EU, this is rubbish. The Charter of Fundamental Rights will not reintroduce the death penalty in the EU.

Professor Schachtschneider is complaining that the provision in the Charter of Fundamental Rights that bans Member States from having a death penalty does not apply in times of war or during what in English we would normally call States of Emergency.

That does not mean that the death penalty then applies.

What it means is that if there was a World War III or similar circumstances and the UK Parliament passed legislation along the lines of previous Defence of the Realms Acts or the Emergency Powers (Defence) Act, allowing the death penalty in cases of treason for the duration of the war, then that would not be banned by the Charter of Fundamental Rights. The non-EU European Convention on Human Rights has almost exactly the same provision and - as you might have noticed - that has not led to the reintroduction of the death penalty in all those countries that are signed up to the ECHR.

My German isn't great but Professor Schachtschneider seems to be complaining that the Charter doesn't provide a blanket ban on the death penalty. For those of us who think that Parliament should be able to decide such things, the fact that times of war and serious civil unrest is not covered by the ban is a small but important concession.