Archive for August, 2011

Duggan shooting: Media trying to shift blame for their inaccurate claims

A correction and apology

Before reading this post please read the correction and apology posted here


An update to the earlier post here that highlights the media’s disinformation about the Mark Duggan shooting.

The Daily Mail is attempting to muddy the waters around its allegation that Mark Duggan shot at police. Their original story has been updated several times, most recently yesterday afternoon.  It includes the following assertion:

Today, Mail journo Rebecca Camber has jumped on the police bullet story and has written:

This is simply untrue.  The Independent Police Complaints Commission has only issued press releases (which can be viewed here) and the quote attributed to its Commissioner, Rachel Cerfontyne, in the Mail’s article has been lifted from one of them.  None of the press releases issued by the IPCC suggest that Met officers returned fire after someone in the minicab opened fire.  The Mail’s assertion is another falsehood.

The ‘Duggan fired at police’ element of the original story was a creation by a journalist, and in typically derivative manner other journos repeated the claim in their own papers as if it was a fact.  And so the myth became reality in the eyes of millions.  Now the ‘reality’ seems set to be contradicted by emerging facts, the media is trying to point the finger of blame away from itself.

No matter what the rights or wrongs of the incident on Ferry Lane, we have a duty to tell the truth however inconvenient it proves to be.  The media has not only spun a fictional account of events, it is now lying about doing so to cover its own back.

The Mark Duggan shooting, the police, and the media

A correction and apology

Before reading this post please read the correction and apology posted here


It is said the first casualty of war is truth.  Sadly in this country, it seems the first casualty of press coverage is also truth.

The shooting of Mark Duggan, by officers from the Metropolitan Police CO19 firearms unit, is being investigated and we await the findings of the inquiry into the events that took place on Ferry Lane in Tottenham.  We do not know exactly what happened.  Duggan might have failed to follow instructions leading police to decide he was a threat.  Duggan might have drawn a weapon resulting in him being shot.  A police officer might have lost discipline and opened fire.

We have to wait and see what the witness statements and forensic evidence tell us.  But at this time we do know some of the facts.

  • The police set out to arrest Mark Duggan after stopping a mini cab he was travelling in
  • He was challenged
  • At least two shots were fired by police
  • Duggan was killed
  • Another police officer was injured by a round that lodged in his radio
  • A non-police issue firearm was found at the scene
  • An investigation was immediately started by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC)

That is all.  Anything else being reported at this time – even if it turns out later to be accurate – is nothing more than rumour and speculation. However, once again we have seen the elements in the media reporting things as fact that have no evidence to support them.  Consider these:

* Man killed in shooting incident involving police officer.  A policeman’s life was saved by his radio last night after a gunman opened fire on him and the bullet hit the device. – Telegraph

* But Duggan, a known offender from London’s notorious Broadwater Farm Estate, became aware that he was being followed and opened fire on the officers.  He shot the officer from Scotland Yard’s elite firearms squad CO19 in the side of his chest with a handgun. – Daily Mail

* A GUNMAN was killed by cops last night in a shoot-out in which an officer survived when a bullet seemingly hit his radio. He was downed by a marksman after firing first and hitting the officer. Witnesses said police had shouted at the man to stop but he ignored them. – The Sun

* The incident took place in Tottenham Hale at about 18:15 BST and Mr Duggan died at the scene.  Two shots were fired by an officer and it is believed that one shot was discharged from an illegal firearm inside the car. – BBC News London

* Officers shouted at the man to stop but he turned and fired his weapon, hitting one policeman. Luckily, the bullet seemed to ricochet off his radio, and after brief medical attention he was able to go home. – Metro

There is no evidence for these media assertions.  The Metropolitan Police have not issued any press release or provided interviews where such assertions were shared.  The IPCC has issued press releases but has said nothing about Duggan firing a weapon.  But because the media stated these ‘facts’ people have accepted them as the truth and are now wrongly accusing the Met of lying and spreading the disinformation for nefarious purposes:

The impact of this irresponsible media behaviour, in conjunction with the unconfirmed reports about the ballistic test results, is causing further reputational damage to the Metropolitan Police.  There is plenty to criticise and condemn the Met for, but it is wrong and unjust to accuse them of something they are not guilty of.  Already we have seen this media inaccuracy being exploited by serial rioters like Jody McIntyre to justify their own behaviour and egg on others to riot, commit arson and engage in looting in various parts of London.

The Press Complaints Commission is a busted flush.  But before it withers away and is replaced by creeping government regulation and oversight, it could make itself relevant for a short time and take on this appalling lack of journalistic rigour, which could be having far reaching consequences.  The media must be held to account and cannot be allowed to publish such unsubstantiated claims as fact and in so doing misleading the public.

And just in case anyone thinks this blog is being unfair to the media, there is at least one example of a media outlet that reported the story and just about kept itself under control by not asserting Duggan fired any shots… take a bow Sky News.

Update: Have just found a post in a similar vein written yesterday by The Lost Boy. The post is worth reading and the blog adding to your read list.

Tottenham shows it’s time to end the Jody McIntyre roadshow

Update: Bubbling with excitement, McIntyre enjoyed a second night of riot tourism this time in Brixton.  The journalistic giant, pride of The Independent, The Guardian and New Statesman, returned to his lair in the early hours to bash out some tweets glorifying the violence:

Those who have watched his evasive BBC TV interview from last year will be familiar with his technique of not answering a question, instead posing another of his own. Well, he does it on his keyboard too. There remains not a single word of condemnation from McIntyre of the looting, arson and criminal damage.  So will the newspapers continue to give this thug a platform?:

When this round of rioting is over we can but guess what ’cause’ he will attach himself to next as an excuse to take to the streets yet again and add to disorder and criminality.


Original Post

Thanks to The Guardian, The Independent and the New Statesman, the self promoting rent-a-protester, Jody McIntyre, has been afforded the oxygen of publicity and a platform to spout his special brand of bile.  We’ll come back these media giants further down.

Jody McIntyre describes himself as a ‘journalist’ and ‘political activist’.  The reality is he is nothing more than a trouble-seeking wannabe thug who gets a thrill from being right in the thick of violent disorder.  On his blog he tells people:

Jody McIntyre is a journalist and political activist. With a regular blog for The Independent, he has also written for The Guardian, the New Statesman, Electronic Intifada and Disability Now.

That apparently depicts journalism despite an apparent lack of payment for his ‘work’.  In reality he is trying to cover his activities in a veneer of respectability they do not warrant.  What is noteworthy is that despite his complaint that disabled people are badly treated and discriminated against he seems to think his cerebral palsy and use of a wheelchair should exempt him from being treated in the same way as other protesters.

As McIntyre lives in south London it should come as no surprise that he was present in Tottenham, north London, last night as parts of the borough were consumed by rioting, arson, looting, house breaking and muggings.  But more of McIntyre’s big night out (presumably only for the purposes of ‘journalism’…) in a minute.  First, let’s examine the legend Jody McIntyre would have us believe, then add the reality he and his band of anarcho-fans would prefer people didn’t know.

McIntyre came to prominence during the student protests in London when he was twice taken out of his wheelchair by police and moved to the side of the road.  His complaints about his treatment were quickly picked up by the media looking for a police ‘disproportionate force’ and in no time he was on Sky News and the BBC claiming he had been ‘attacked’.

However the TV interview showed Jody McIntyre up to be slippery and evasive and his story was clearly questionable as the footage was not very clear.  When challenged about his self description as a ‘revolutionary’ who believes in ‘direct action’ McIntyre sought to get off the subject as quickly as possible.  Clearly it would be inconvenient to present himself as merely a concerned citizen when the reality is he goes out of his way to get stuck into the action anytime there is a protest, no matter what the cause.  However McIntyre can be seen trying to crawl away from the police officer in the middle of the road as he resisted before being pulled to the kerb where he wouldn’t cause an obstruction.

So here we had this poor, wheelchair bound, young lad who just wanted engage in peaceful, democratic protest, being mistreated by the police. Not once, but twice.  Or did we?  Because, before this incident, McIntyre had been right at the front of violent clashes with the police.  He deliberately put himself there despite knowing violence was taking place. He actually describes it on his blog!  Here are some snippets…

As we parked up, and began walking back down the Strand, we saw a crowd emerging from Aldwych; around 2000 students had set off from LSE. However, they were only marching down one side of the road, and we were in a militant mood. Me and Finlay crossed over, into the oncoming traffic, and within seconds the whole crowd had followed.

It was an endless sea of people, but unfortunately, they had been corralled by police and NUS stewards into one lane of the dual carriageway. Me and Finlay immediately set to work, tearing down the metal barriers which separated the two lanes. Oncoming traffic drivers looked on in wonder.

The people with the music system must have had the same thought. All of a sudden, the bicycle burst out of the crowd, rushing through the pair of armed police guarding the private road of the Treasury. A group of 200 followed, including me in my wheelchair, and Finlay pushing at full speed. A dubstep tune came on, and the chanting began; “Fuck Cameron! Fuck Cameron! Fuck Cameron! Fuck Cameron!” Not the Treasury’s proudest day.

The building was occupied on the day the Browne Review was released, so here the police were ready for us. We flooded into the courtyard, but the riot cops were called within minutes. As batons began to swing, me and Finlay stood our ground on the front line. I stood up on my wheelchair, but attempts to re-take the courtyard soon fizzled out as a riot van was brought in.

In front of us, a huge glass building towered; it was the Conservative Party’s Headquarters, and it was under attack. The crowd was so tightly packed that even with the wheelchair, it was a huge effort to force our way through. Around half way we gave up. The crowd was swaying. “They’re smashing the windows…”

Me and Finlay looked at each other. We knew that we had to make it to the front. Kareem started pushing the wheelchair again, and Finlay cleared a path in front of us.

It wasn’t long before the next surge came. A Mexican wave of bodies. I fell out of my wheelchair and pushed through two cops. Finlay stood behind me, the wheelchair still in his hands.

Scores of demonstrators followed. Finlay came running in with the wheelchair a couple of minutes later. Victorious chants rang in the air; “Tory scum! Tory scum!” “When they say cut back, we say fight back!”

But then, the chants changed… “To the stairs! To the stairs!” Two policemen blocking a tiny door were soon brushed aside, and around fifty of us forced our way through before they had a chance to re-seal the entrance.

It was an epic mission to the top. Nine floors; eighteen flights of stairs. Two friends carried my wheelchair, and I walked. We couldn’t give up now.

When we finally made it to the roof, a feeling of calm descended. I looked over the edge; thousands of students, three massive bonfires and masses of passion still occupied the courtyard. The Tory’s HQ was on it’s last legs. And we were on the roof.

This is only the start.

Gentle lamb, isn’t he?  All of this activity, yet no complaints about being disabled.  Yet the moment the police moved him out of harms way on a street, Jody McIntyre was screaming blue murder and citing his cerebral palsy and seemingly sporadic wheelchair use to underline their sheer evil and lack of concern for the disabled.

Inconveniently for McIntyre, not only was his involvement in the street part of the violence photographed, but the photographer even posted a blog piece explaining what McIntyre had done and why his subsequent complaint was vexatious.  It is a must read piece.  One of the photos included in it is of McIntyre, on his feet, about to hit a police officer – known in legal parlance as assault.

Despite this the Graun, the Indy and the marxist Staggers all publish his self indulgent tosh.  Fast forward from last autumn in central London to last night in Tottenham.  By 10.00pm it was clear that the peaceful protest outside Tottenham police station had been hijacked by those bent on violence and criminal activity.  But where there is violent protest, there is McIntyre.  We know because Guardian journalist Paul Lewis tweeted a message to McIntyre earlier today:

McIntyre was also online, winding things up and revelling in the disorder on his Twitter account.  The tweets below were screen captured at 2.00pm today, putting the time of posting the first image at around 11.00pm last night, at the height of the trouble and the second one at around 5.00am this morning when looters were still destroying businesses:

So here we have a man who is given a platform in The Guardian, The Independent and the New Statesman, out in the thick of the violence until early morning and inciting people elsewhere to riot in similar fashion.  A man who went on to condemn the police as troublemakers as properties, vehicles and businesses were torched, journalists and media were attacked and robbed, bystanders were mugged, and residents overrun by thugs who broke down their doors to steal from their homes.

The question is, having fallen for his deceitful sob story last year and given this man an unwarranted veneer of respectability, will these media outlets now remove the platform they provided this violence glorifying hooligan?  Or will they show themselves (again, more on this during the week) as part of this country’s enemy within who endorse and provide assistance those who engage in pre-meditated criminality, be it as a battering ram on wheels or walkabout agitator?

It is time to end the glorification of troublemakers like McInytre. It’s time for these papers to withdraw their endorsement and put an end to the Jody McIntyre media roadshow.

Odd one out? The insipid, biased BBC

David Leigh is the Guardian’s investigations executive editor.  He is now the subject of an investigation after the Guido Fawkes blog double sourced accusations that Leigh had admitted some years ago to engaging in ‘phone hacking’.

When Harry Cole asked Leigh about his ‘phone hacking’ activities, Leigh denied it.  This is because Leigh is a liar.

If David Leigh can lie about this after making a written, public admission of criminal behaviour, what else has Leigh lied about?  The veil is being drawn back and now Leigh and his Guardian cronies are going to come under intense scrutiny – and this blog will be reminding people in the coming days of other David Leigh activities that he has denied despite evidence.

The Guardian, with its uniquely smug air of self satisfied arrogance, has eagerly pursued its agenda to undermine News International as part of the effort to stop Rupert Murdoch regaining full control of British Sky Broadcasting. That effort has been driven by a desire to protect the BBC’s utter dominance over the dissemination of news in the UK and significant presence overseas, and it has seen key members of the Guardian – including editor Alan Rusbridger – strutting around TV and radio studios to pontificate about ‘phone hacking’ outrageous.

Needless to say, other news media outlets around the world are thoroughly enjoying the delicious irony of The Guardian being put under the microscope for the very crime it has spent years pushing to the front of the news agenda, as some of the headlines reveal from a Google search.  But there is one glaring omission from the international cast of media outlets covering the story…

The BBC. (Important edit: Although the BBC did refer to Leigh’s hacking activity in piece back in April, since Leigh’s denial being reported globally it has gone very quiet)

As you can see, the BBC does not mention David Leigh in any news story anywhere on its site today, and has not done so in the past week.  And a search of the BBC site using its own internal search engine reveals the same resolute refusal to cover a story that is being reported from Australia to the United States:

This reinforces our condemnation of the BBC for outrageous bias, only selecting news stories that support the BBC’s worldview or agendas.  And one of the BBC’s agendas is presenting its close friends at The Guardian as trustworthy, authoritative and reliable.

This omission of the story, which is damaging to David Leigh and The Guardian, is not the BBC turning its attention away from ‘phone hacking’.  We have ample evidence this bias by omission in a deliberate effort by the BBC to keep its audience in ignorance of inconvenient news and information.  This is an utter corruption of the BBC’s public service remit.

At the time of writing, in the last 24 hours Google shows BBC News has published no less than 8 stories related to its obsessive coverage of the ‘phone hacking’ scandal.  This screen capture shows them:

The BBC’s relationship with The Guardian is an incestuous union devoted to the pursuit of an illiberal-left agenda, funded by taxpayers’ money.  BBC News is nothing more than a propaganda outlet that puts its own interests before its obligation to report news honestly and impartially. This is their idea of honest and transparent media.

Thus the BBC treats the British public with contempt, taking our money and using it to distort the news while behaving as an activist, advancing views and theories without any semblance of impartiality.  As such it is our duty to resist this corruption and work towards the destruction of BBC News.

BBC proves unreliable by omitting key facts from Bannatyne story

As the so called phone hacking scandal was getting into full swing, this blog published a post explaining the real reason for the Guardian-BBC assault on News International and Rupert Murdoch in particular.

The post included the following:

But plurality is not the issue, for the left it is all about maintaining their dominance and biased news selection and broadcast and ability to exclude or omit news, facts or opinions that undermine their ‘progressive’ agenda.

It went on to highlight Labour’s Ivan Lewis, writing in the Guardian, confirming this when he said:

While News Corp asserts that Britain’s impartiality rules mean Sky News could never adopt a political agenda akin to Fox News, there remains a real concern about the selection of news, which in itself can significantly distort coverage.

Significantly distort coverage.  Keep that phrase in mind because today we have a clear example of the BBC’s questionable news selection at work, with the effect that it significantly distorts coverage of the full story, to protect one of the BBC’s own.

This concerns the story of a threat made on Twitter to Dragons’ Den investor Duncan Bannatyne.  A Twitter user sent tweets to Bannatyne making threats to harm his daughter unless the multi millionaire paid out £35,000.  An understandably upset and angry Bannatyne responded to all his followers with the tweet shown below (hat tip and story: Bitterwallet):

Now let us be completely fair here.  In Bannatyne’s position we would probably have said the same thing in our anger and worry and we would want to protect our loved one and exact punishment on the vicious extortionist.  In the eyes of the law though Bannatyne’s comment was clear incitement to grievous bodily harm in return for payment.  A short while later Bannatyne must have realised this because he deleted the tweet from his page.  But not before it had been repeated around the social media site by tens of thousands of users.

Fast forward to mid evening and BBC Online runs the story on its News UK site as shown in full in the screenshot below:

Like it or not, Bannatyne’s threat to the extortionist is newsworthy and puts the story into full context.  Even the pisspoor Telegraph understood that and included it in its write up of the story.  Yet the BBC journalist and/or online editor have selected out this element of the story.  Because this very relevant element has been deliberately omitted the BBC has significantly distorted the coverage.

Is it because Duncan Bannatyne is an important member of a successful BBC television programme line up?  Is it because the BBC want to shield one of their own from negative publicity or possible police investigation?  It is because they feel sympathy for a concerned father whose child has become a target because of his high profile?  We cannot be sure because the BBC is exempt from answering such questions under the Freedom of Information Act because the information is held ‘for the purposes of journalism’. Regardless of the motivation, it is plain wrong.

The key point here is if the BBC is willing to omit an important element of a story in this way how can we ever trust it to give up the full impartial story on any issue?

The BBC is a media mogul with a dominant position in the UK.  Forget Murdoch, this is the media empire in the UK, spanning television, radio and internet that dominates the dissemination of news and information in this country.  In fact 70% of the TV news in the UK is broadcast by the BBC and people relying exclusively on the BBC for their news are, as this story shows, receiving an editorially slanted version of the facts.  It is unacceptable but we remain compelled to foot the bill for this bias.

In the meantime we hope the gutless thug who levelled the threat against Duncan Bannatyne’s daughter is caught by the appropriate authorities and dealt with through the legal system with his arms intact.

The Commentator v Islamic terror apologist Seumas Milne

As this blog and others have highlighted, the freedom hating leftists are falling over themselves to smear anyone who holds right of centre or libertarian views as being soulmates of mass murderer Anders Breivik.

Notable among them in the last week was the Guardian’s associate editor and fanatical apologist for Islamist terror, Seumas Milne.  For he wrote this steaming pile of Milneshit in a deliberate effort to sully and demonise those people who write critically about issues that concern the majority of people in this country, but which of course are championed by the left because those things we oppose are the mainstay enablers of the illiberal left worldview.

In response, Robin Shepherd of The Commentator has published a post titled: Leftist attempts to smear the Right over Anders Breivik are contemptible and wrongheaded.  If you have never visited the pages of The Commentator, it is well worth adding to your bookmarks as there is some particularly good writing to be found there. And if you are wondering about the clarity of thought evident in its articles, this piece by Shepherd should put your mind at rest, particularly with observations such as this:

To say that they and Breivik shared an opposition to some of the same things, that Breivik was aware of this, and that that is therefore evidence of a continuum between them is as ludicrous as saying that shared opposition to prostitution, for example, was evidence of a continuum between Victorian moralists and Jack the Ripper since the latter would certainly have been aware of the thinking of the former.

All Milne and company are ultimately left with is the same old authoritarian agenda repackaged on the back of a modern day tragedy: the problems of a social-democratic, multiculturalist Europe which is largely the creation of the Left must never be discussed. The debate must be suppressed.

How to make your career fly in the EU

Back in February this blog posted about William Hague encouraging young Britons to consider working for the EU Civil Service.  If anyone took up the idea and wants to know how to really get on in their new employ, they should read on for some pointers to career advancement EU style.

For via Gawain at England Expects we learn how people have secured progression at the European Parliament.  He shares a redacted email resignation in French that was sent to all 6,000 internal mail boxes at the Parliament and explains that it appears to have come from an official working in the Queastors office, and that it makes a series of allegations against very senior staff and reasons for employment of some other senior staff.

Below is a rough translation…

Dear xxxxx,
OK, I have taken the decision to resign from the European Parliament after I found out some things about you. In effect I discover that you have been shagging, and on top of that you have been drinking at the [female genitalia] of xxxxx(A) , xxxxx(B) and xxxxx(C). It’s a disgrace don’t you think?
These women are in interesting posts that require you to pass the concours (internal exam), or their promotions are blocked. Little xxxxx(C) is the same functionary who has never passed a concours. xxxxx(A) has never passed a concours and she is AD (a senior grade) and xxxxx(C) it’s been ten years since she was in the European Parliament.
So it seem you have to suck the [male genitalia] of the Secretary General to get a post, it is truly disgusting.
Same with old mother xxxxx, she was pregnant with the old Sec Gen and now she is a Deputy Sec Gen.
Mari No
Faithful servant of Princess xxxxx (known as the Princess of shit)
Et voila, as they say.
No matter where our government masters reside, they still act in the same boorish and corrupt manner.  We shouldn’t hold our breath for a major inquiry, resignations and dismissals.  Where there is no accountability there is no fear.

Hilarious if they were not so dangerous

The good Dr North at EU Referendum draws our attention today to two related pieces in that newsprint spattered bastion of Marxism known as The Guardian.

It seems a left wing, self appointed band of self professed worthies has announced that they are launching a campaign to hold to account Britain’s ‘feral’ elite for the series of crises which have scarred the country.

Expenses, bonuses and hacking crises share the same origins, says this campaign group, which proposes to create a 1,000-strong “public jury” that would be selected at random and ensure that power is taken away from “remote interest groups” which currently treat the public with contempt.  As North explains:

This is the view the likes of Greg Dyke, Caroline Lucas and Lord Smith of Clifton, who think we need a “people’s jury” to apply a “public interest first” test more generally to British political and corporate life. Overworked as a cliché or not, you really could not make this one up.

And he’s right.  The ‘feral elite’ they describe is comprised of figures from the establishment.  Yet without any sense of self awareness or the evident rich irony, the campaign group itself is made up of 56 academics, writers, trade unionists and politicians from Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Green party – in other words, left wing figures from the establishment.

A look at the list of signatories to their open letter in the Graun betrays the motivation and the objective of this little enterprise.  This is not about holding the ‘feral elite’ to account, it is about undermining their rivals in the establishment in order to secure more influence for themselves and their liberal-left worldview.  If you don’t believe that, just look at their stated priority areas for attention in the background article about the campaign:

• Media ownership and the public interest

• The role of the financial sector in the crash

• MP selections and accountability

• Policing and public interest

• How to apply a ‘public interest first’ test more generally to British political and corporate life

Quelle surprise seeing media ownership, code for ‘nail Murdoch and any opposition to the BBC and Guardian’ right up there at number one.  You can almost see the conversation where these people were asking themselves what could they do to capitalise on the current anti News Corp sentiment and solidify the dominance of the BBC on the airwaves.  This campaign is their vehicle to control the levers of power without having to share the cockpit any longer.

As if there are not enough clues as to the real aims of this campaign – oxygen of publicity by the Guardian… main figurehead the former BBC Director General Greg Dyke… supported by Media Standards Trust (deputy chair, Julia Middleton, the CEO of Common Purpose) board members Helena Kennedy QC, BBC hack Robert Peston and Amelia Fawcett who is also chair of Guardian Media Group…  – the activity is being facilitated by Compass.  Note their slogan.  The one thing absent from the campaign is any form of ideological balance.  That should tell us all we need to know.

This is nothing more than a raid.  It is an attempt to get support from unwitting people, who would reject the leftist dogma out of hand if presented to them openly, who feel concern at what they see around them.  But people who will fail to realise the state of affairs this campaign claims it wants to tackle has largely been shaped by its very signatories since 1997 because it suited their interersts in their establishment positions.

The campaign is nothing more an attempt to use people as pawns in the power games of the elite.  As North rightly concludes in his blog post:

The trouble is, you will never get the “feral elite” offer anything that amounts to the transfer of real power. If we want power, we are going to have to take it. The time is not yet, but what we are seeing here is the elites falling out. The time must be near.

That time cannot come too soon.

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