The Black Flap responded to a comment by Maggie which had referred to a “whispering campaign” inside Ibrox against Chairman Malcolm Murray.
His comment addressed Maggie’s thought and also my “challenge” to show evidence of my “hate”, “bile” and “bias”.
Mr Flap said:-
Tell me. How do YOU know there is a whispering campaign? You don’t.
This is the problem with majority of posts here. Biased agenda. Hate filled conjectures:
share issue would fail – it didn’t
Rangers don’t have enough monies to see out season – bollocks
New winding up order – rubbish
That’s the biased agenda right there Pauly. Or just 3 examples of such which have been posited by you recently.
The Green v Murray “Whispering Campaign”
What is the truth behind the dispute between Messrs Green and Murray? Who knows?
However it seems to be clear that there has been an issue, either as detailed in the hyperbolic piece by Keith Jackson, where the import was that if Murray did not go, then Green would, or the more restrained coverage by Richard Wilson in the Herald.
The best evidence, I think, of the story coming from inside the listed façade of Ibrox emerges from the coverage of the issue by Mr Leggat. As regular readers will be aware, Mr Leggat is a blogger who can fairly be described as “provocative”. He also seems to have excellent connections within Rangers, as exemplified by his being able to use Ibrox for launching his book recently. Whereas he initially was sceptical of Mr Green, calling him a “snake oil salesman” he now has the fervour of the converted, being a most vocal supporter of the Yorkshireman.
Mr Leggat rubbished the Record’s story, suggesting various base motives for it, and alleging that it was written despite the journalist in question knowing the “truth”. A serious accusation, as such an experienced journalist as Mr Leggat would be well aware.
(Mind you, his reports that Mark Daly of the BBC is the object of an investigation “closing in” relating to the award-winning Inside Story programme seems to ignore the journalists’ “Golden Rule”, namely that sources should be protected, at all costs).
Mr Leggat refers to his own “unimpeachable source” regarding the Green/Murray story. What makes me think that the story has come from within Ibrox?
First of all, one would not imagine that the “boardroom bust-up”, to use a tabloid phrase, would be common knowledge. It was, presumably, played out in a Board meeting, not on the public stage.
Mr Leggat then made comments directly regarding Mr Murray:-
Twenty four hours after Jackson’s story in the Record appeared Richard Wilson in the Herald, a man with good, close, confidential and trustworthy sources inside the Blue Room, made it clear that it was Malcolm Murray’s public behaviour which was causing concern in the Blue Room.
Malcolm Murray may think the time he spends in London is time when he is not on public show as the chairman of Rangers. That is not the case.
As to how the situation regarding Malcolm Murray will play out? My prediction is that there will be a negotiated departure with kind words spoken by both sides.
Anything else could perhaps prove to be too dangerous to Malcolm Murray for him to contemplate.
I am sure Mr Leggat intended no threat in his words, and that it was unfortunate that Mr Murray, if he was reading it, might have taken such from what Mr Leggat had to say.
In assessing where the “leak” to Mr Leggat came from, one should normally look towards the beneficiary of such a story.
Was it Mr Murray? No.
Was it the “Rangers haters”? Possibly, but it is highly unlikely that Mr Leggat would print a story to assist the massed ranks of “haters”.
Was it Mr Green? Certainly. And as Mr Leggat is one of the most high-profile and vocal proponents of Mr Green, and also a man full of praise for the Rangers Director of Communications, James Traynor, one is led to the conclusion that, indeed, two plus two equals four.
(That is NOT to say necessarily that it was either Mr Green or Mr Traynor who spoke to Mr Leggat. Indeed they might not have been involved in the decision making process at all. However, minions are usually keen to please their masters, as for example, happened when Henry II of England said “Who will rid me of this turbulent priest?” and as a result some of his knights murdered the man who became Saint Thomas of Canterbury.)
(For the avoidance of doubt, I am not suggesting that any employees of Rangers have plotted the murder of anyone.)
Mr Leggat also clearly has sources in Ibrox. On the day following receipt by me of correspondence from Rangers lawyers at 10.30pm, Mr Leggat published a blog referring to court action being taken against me. Now he was wrong in that there was no such court action, and instead an exchange of correspondence, but the story could only have emerged from Ibrox or from its lawyers.
I would be astonished if the legal firm in question disclosed the information, and if it had, I am sure it would have got the details right.
So, as a long winded answer to Mr Flap, I think Maggie’s reference to a “whispering campaign” against Mr Murray is supported by the circumstantial evidence. In fact calling it “whispering” understates the volume at which the story was passed on!
The “Charges” Against Me
Mr Flap has been the first person to actually suggest where evidence of my bias can be found. Indeed he refers to my “Biased agenda and Hate filled conjectures”.
He tells me that three stories “posited by me recently” provide the proof.
These are as follows, with Mr Flap’s snappy summary after each:-
- Share issue would fail – it didn’t
- Rangers don’t have enough monies to see out season – bollocks
- New winding up order – rubbish
I think Mr Flap has done the same here.
I had a good look through the posts I have written referring to the share issue. I have not found any where I stated that the share issue would fail. Indeed as I wrote shortly before the offer closed:-
We will find out soon enough the extent of the issue’s success, which will, I am sure, shock many.
I also have not found any piece written by me suggesting that Rangers do not have the money to see out the season. I know this has been speculated on elsewhere. However all such musings have the problem that, until figures are published, it is guess work.
Last summer I analysed the Duff & Phelps figures and speculated on how this might affect the progress of Rangers in season 2012-2013, but that was not a prediction that it would run out of cash. I know too that some have suggested there will be, or more likely are hoping for, a second administration event.
As matters stand there is no concrete evidence supporting that as a conclusion.
Finally, as regards the “new winding up order”, I referred in what I have written about it to the pieces by Alex Thomson, the BBC report, and to the official comments by Rangers. I am not sure which bit of the reportage I got wrong in Mr Flap’s eyes.
So sadly I must tell him that he does not win the prize of a tea and scone with me in St Patrick’s Church Hall in Coatbridge.
Recent weeks especially, as the shrieking about “Rangers haters” seems to have got louder and louder, have made it clear how many people form views without the benefit of any evidence at all.
As far as me being a “Rangers hater” who spouts, spews or spits “bile” goes, the “evidence” of this seems to be as follows.
A Rangers Supporter – Paul – you hate Rangers and spout bile about the club, don’t you?
Paul McConville – No I do not. Show me the evidence of me doing so.
ARS – Yes, you do. We all know you do.
PMCC – No, I don’t.
ARS – Yes, you do. Because you deny it, that proves your denial is false, as we know you are a Rangers hater.
PMCC – But there is no actual evidence you can show me, is there?
ARS – That proves it again. The fact that you attempt so successfully to hide it, proves it is true.
I suspect that this “logic” was applied throughout the Middle Ages to witches! It lay behind the operation of the “ducking stool”.
In those circumstances it is therefore impossible to prove that one is not a “Rangers hater” simply because the starting point for the “discussion” assumes I am. Indeed, the more I point out that I am not, the more this is used as evidence of me hiding my “hating” credentials!
It is all rather amusing.
Posted by Paul “Witch-Smeller Pursuivant” McConville
NB – For the avoidance of doubt,I am NOT suggesting that Rangers fans indulge in “witch dunking” or other acts of violence against those they perceive as “enemies” or “haters”.