“If you wanted to know the latest news on their tax travails, rangerstaxcase was a place you went because, unlike newspapers or radio stations, rangerstaxcase was connected to the heart of the FTT and everybody knew it.
It had documents and detail that were beyond dispute. When illustrating one point it was making it would summon up information that could only have come from somebody within, or very close to, the tribunal”
(Tom English – The Scotsman 25.11.2012)
“The day I read the Vanguard Bears is the day I gouge out my own eyes”
(Tom English – Twitter 21.08.2014)
Its good to know that Tom English has found some sort of journalistic morality of late, however it may present a conflict of interests with his new employer, BBC Scotland. Or does the morality of source over story only apply in certain circumstances ? After all, Tom is now working for an employer who were happy to utilise not just stolen property, but stolen evidence from the Rangers Tax Tribunal, if Lord Nimmo Smith’s conclusions are correct.
But in his new found morality Tom has excluded himself from the knowledge that Vanguard Bears appear to have successfully cultivated a mole, perhaps within the SFA itself, as previous revelations, including documentary evidence, suggest. And could this latest expose, while perhaps lacking in documentary evidence, be a clear signpost to of a course of unedifying, unprofessional and negligent conduct involving our footballs higher echelons of administration ? Especially when viewed in the context of previous disclosed e-mails and agreements. Nope of course not – nothing to see here – move along please.
But should we really be surprised ? After all there seems little excitement in journalistic circles that those in charge of Scottish Football were prepared to find Rangers guilty prior to trial as well as inflict draconian type punishments on a club which had yet to be found guilty. Morality ?
Perhaps some of those journalists, and there have been many of late, who remind us of the impoverished state of our game via their daily columns, care to consider if perhaps they have a role to play. After all if the head of our game is more worried about being on time for a dinner date rather than what was probably one of the most critical meetings in the history of our game, is there not something fundamentally wrong ?
What is particularly alarming in this whole episode are those gleefully re tweeting Tom English’s original tweet. It does not matter that journalists will ignore story over source, it does not matter that it contains allegations of incompetence, of lack of prioritisation, of utter disdain for the game of football in Scotland (ironically affecting their own clubs) – so long as Rangers or Rangers fans get it in the neck – then that makes it okay.
But let’s not be too harsh on Stewart Regan – I’m told there is a certain restaurant in Leeds which does a succulent lamb to die for.
It looks like football in Scotland will be the sacrificial lamb.