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The art of keeping a secret

Posted on April 07, 2015 by

Alert readers will probably recall that a couple of days ago we explained this site’s most fundamental purpose as being to teach people “how to read between the lines [and] and spot what isn’t being said” in newspapers, so we’re grateful to today’s Daily Record for providing us with a timely example of the second phenomenon.


The paper’s front-page splash, accompanied by a double-page spread inside, is the story of how “SNP boss” (where “boss” seems to mean “unsuccessful and disgruntled candidate for selection to contest Westminster seat”) and former Labour councillor Muhammad Shoaib has [EDIT 1.19pm: supposedly] defected back to Labour.

Mr Shaoib, who has something of a colourful history and has expressed his strong disapproval of Labour’s Scottish branch manager Jim Murphy several times in recent months, claims repeatedly in the article that “SNP members in Nicola Sturgeon’s constituency are secretly backing another five years of David Cameron”. And the word “secretly” is used very interestingly throughout the piece.

“I have been a senior member of Nicola Sturgeon’s constituency for years and I am deeply saddened that many of my former colleagues in the SNP secretly hope for another Tory government.

I have become more and more shocked that many in the SNP want to put the interests of the SNP before the interests of Scotland, and their secret hopes for a Tory government betray their true motives.”

Our emphasis. But what’s noticeably missing from the lengthy text are any examples of Mr Shaoib claiming that anyone in the SNP ever actually SAID such a thing to him. Over and over again, he asserts that these alleged feelings are “secret”, which rather implies that nobody’s ever expressed them out loud, and that therefore we’re relying solely on his mind-reading skills as evidence.

Far be it from us to tell the Record’s journalists how to do their jobs, of course, but we’d have thought that’d be a fairly key peg to hang the big revelation on. Personally speaking, to be able to name at least one actual human being in the SNP who’d said to Muhammad Shaoib that they wanted the Tories to win would have been the first criterion that we’d have applied before we held the front page. Maybe we’re just picky.

Often, readers, the real story is in the words that aren’t there.

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  1. 07 04 15 11:33

    The art of keeping a secret | Speymouth

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129 to “The art of keeping a secret”

  1. MajorBloodnok says:

    He’s not employed by the Scotland Office is he?

  2. Catherine says:

    The National could have a front page with Labour defectors to the SNP everyday of the week. All they could find was this guy who had been a member for 5 minutes, found the party wasn’t falling at his feet and then defected. Big wow…

  3. Daniel says:

    The Rolling Stone just suffered a monstrous backlash from everyone (except feminism) for failing to ‘follow basic journalistic practice’ by not actually investigating the girl’s gang rape claims which turned out to be false.

    Is there a difference between The Rolling Stone’s failures here and the Daily Record’s? Unless Shaoib did actually mention their names and is keeping it somewhat ironically, secret?

  4. Capella says:

    These people are not well. It must be the stress of staring into the electoral abyss.

  5. Cath says:

    What’s the betting James Cook’s “some people in the SNP definitely do think this but I”m not saying who” turns out to be none other than “SNP boss” Muhammad Shoaib?

  6. Cath says:

    After all, it’s very clear which party in Scotland is, and has been for years, in defacto collaboration with the Tories – and that is Labour.

  7. Mae Carson says:

    The only mind reading skills on view here (and they appear to be accurate) is the SNP’s ability to spot a wrong ‘un.

    Good for them.

  8. Ravelin says:

    Does anyone else secretly think that Labour and the Daily Record are secretly clutching at any straws they can? Aren’t the SNP the only party so far to publically rule out any sort of deal with the Tories after all?

  9. FairFerfochen says:

    O\T Blair sermonising on Sky

  10. Calgacus says:

    Yes Mr.Shoaib, names please?

    No I didn’t think so.

    Obviously part of the pre-planned smear campaign against our popular First Minister.


  11. Lollysmum says:

    The Record strikes again-oh whoops maybe not 🙂

    Nothing to back up any claims. Wonder if this was the person James CookBBC had been talking to on Saturday before interviewing Nicola.

    I watched the hustings he took part in. 10 candidates for selection-some excellent quality on display that evening & I had him at number 7 so this whole story is ‘his sour grapes’ & Labour desperate need for a story they can run with after Friday’s #Frenchgate flop.

    Keep it up Record-you’re doing wonderfully well in the Hilarious Stories of The Day Awards.

    Labour-you are just too daft to laugh at as my mum used to say

  12. Macca73 says:

    Personally speaking from my own point of view this is where the papers like the national should be coming in to question the Daily Record and put them to the sword over such a stupid NON story.

    Everyone knows where the records loyalty is and it’s desperately trying (in vain I might add) to keep it’s nose above the water in terms of sales after that VOW.

    Thank god for sites such as this which turns the screw the other way.

  13. One_Scot says:

    You have to wonder, is there anyone left in Scotland who does not now know that the Daily Record is merely a Scottish Labour pamphlet full of Labour propaganda and lies.

  14. HandandShrimp says:

    The Record is desperate as are the Labour Party.

    Any port in a storm. Personally I am looking forward to the SNP holding Ed’ feet to the fire and will be delighted to see the back of Dave and Gideon.

    To my mind Dave winning is a Plan B scenario not a Plan A one.

  15. Jim Stirling says:

    The minute you see a Sarwar { junior or senior } in the frame you can just about guarantee that mischief is afoot.

  16. desimond says:

    This belief that journalists are credible do-gooders has to end. Journalists are as credible as MPs..theres no searching for truth and justice..its just do thy masters bidding.

    Preaching to the converted i know….

  17. Luigi says:

    “SNP boss”

    A careless headline, or deliberately misleading?

    At first glance – it looks like it refers to NS!
    Perhaps that was the intention?

  18. Dan Huil says:

    Unionist Zinoviev Letter no.224.

  19. Alexander MacDonald says:

    I no longer feel anger when the DR blatantly peddles Scotland with such inaccurate information. I feel sorry for them and what they have become.

    I want to complain to the PCC and have this article amended to factual events. But all for what? A three line apology after the damage has already been done?

    I moved to Belgium shortly after the referendum for work purposes, I can’t do anything to change the political landscape in Scotland. I hope that you all can, and will.

  20. G H Graham says:

    I can keep a secret. It’s the people I tell, who can’t.

  21. terry says:

    Just now – Bliar banging on about the EU on the TV and linking it back to Scotland and how the UK almost lost its position at the top table if there’d been a Yes vote – so we are too wee, too poor, too stupid eh, Tony? Surely then you wouldn’t have missed us?

  22. itsme says:

    Superb demolition there.

    Nice to see Labour welcoming yet another principled politician into their ranks. Another desperate attempt to keep this stillborn story going without thinking more than 5 minutes down the line. Their strategy, if they have one, seems to be to shore up the core vote. If there is one.

    There is another example (bee in bonnet alert) on the Herald site where Cameron condemns leaking of civil service memos as “not acceptable.”

    “I abhor the leaking of documents. We need to have private diplomatic conversations. I see as Prime Minister the importance of that protocol.”

    Great. Diplomatic protocols mentioned. Subversion of the election not mentioned.

  23. galamcennalath says:

    “secret hopes” / “secretly hope” WTF does that mean!? If they are secrets then how does this joker know what people hope for? If it had been “discussions in private” or “opinions expressed behind closed doors” it would have been stronger. Stu is right … Name names!

    What I think is going here is this guy is an opportunist who might have tried to progress in the SNP after stagnation in SLab. That didn’t work out, so now he’s gone the other way and trying to make capital of all this secret pro-Tory nonsense smear.

    On a wider view …. I think the SNP should be very careful about accepting Unionist turn coats into their ranks. Yes, some may genuinely see the light and move because the have become pro-Indy. However, I would begin by treating surprise converts with suspicion.

    In my mind someone’s track record over the decades has to be considered. 30 years in the SNP or 30 years in Labour, then swapping … they need careful scrutiny!

  24. HandandShrimp says:

    It must stick the Record’s thrapple that the polls will not shift. I wonder what they will try to do next.

    In the meantime we can keep reminding them that Labour people are campaigning for the Tories in SNP seats. Red Tories all.

  25. Luigi says:

    It seems to be really easy to grab a Daily Record headline these days. All you have to do is allege something bad about the SNP and they will run with it. No questions asked.

    Desperate stuff. Truly desperate.

  26. Dcanmore says:

    It’s all in the timing, it is too convenient for Labour and the Daily Record to produce this nonsense soon after the Scotland Office/Telegraph memogate. A continuation of the SNP = Tories saga that is Labour’s ONLY throw of the dice. It’s about self preservation, and the Daily Record are only too keen to serve as a Labour fanzine, and being dishonest about it too.

    McTernan has built up Labour allies in the Scottish editions of right-wing newspapers by having the SNP as a common enemy, thus having the SNP at the forefront of all the bad press associated with political parties in Scotland, while managing to get SLAB politicians and mouthpieces into the columns of those papers. It’s an alliance made in hell and only for the purpose of Jim Murphy, Douglas Alexander and Margaret Curran keeping their jobs.

    Imagine for a second you spend your working career doing one job, In this case being an MP, a cushy number that allows you to manoeuvre and feather your nest between times of government and opposition. Then suddenly it may come an to end. What else can they do? These people have failed outside of paid-for politics, what can Jim Murphy and wee Dougie and the others actually do? This is monumentally frightening for them at an age when they are still relatively young, so all dirty tricks are dispatched and then some, but all packaged neatly, timed perfectly, and laughably no-one is meant to notice.

    SLAB, BBC Scotland, Daily Record… your number is up, your dishonesty is tearing you down.

  27. De Valera says:

    Man who used to be in Labou Party rejoins…..yawn.

    Is Magrit actually smiling in that photo?

  28. woosie says:

    Hopefully, when we finally achieve independence, these lying rags will be closed down!

  29. almannysbunnet says:

    Just had a great start to the day watching young English voters say they wish they could vote SNP. Boy did that come to an abrupt end! On the same BBC programme, cut to Tony effin Blair giving a speech about the danger to our membership of the EU by voting conservative, no problem with that but he then lays into the SNP with a rant about the dangers of referendums and nationalism. “The rise in SNP support after losing the referendum as proof that once the geni is let out of the bottle people stop listening to sensible arguments.” I was left wondering what the fuck is Tony worried about, the Tories in power or the SNP sniffing around Westminster? I think it’s the latter.

  30. Patrick Roden says:

    This article points to a collaboration between Labour and the LibDems, to smear our First Minister.

    First, the shocking revelation appears in the Telegraph.

    Then the Daily Record follows up with a defection to the SNP, from an SNP candidate, who is ‘Deeply saddened’ that the SNP do want a Tory government.

    So the Daily Record would be giving it’s backing to the Telegraph smear!

    All this has done is show Scotland, just how far both the Labour Party and the Daily Record, have fallen into the filthy black hole of Right Wing Conservatism.

  31. Les Wilson says:

    Does anyone “secretly” think that the Daily Record is in thrall with Labour and ALL it’s BT pals????????

    Had a good laugh at your comments this morning Rev, particularly –
    “he asserts that these alleged feelings are “secret”, which rather implies that nobody’s ever expressed them out loud, and that therefore we’re relying solely on his mind-reading skills as evidence”
    Well said!

  32. rongorongo says:

    OK – so the Boss’ SNP contacts may not have openly said that they hope for a Tory government – but they clearly had all the words necessary for them to have done so readily available in unassembled form. Bomb ingredients? I think so!

  33. MochaChoca says:

    Did they ask him if he’s still a YES?

  34. Mosstrooper says:

    Dear Daily Record

    OK, I confess. I just want to tell everyone that in my secret opinion, which I hold close to my heart, my most fervent wish is that, secretly, I am prepared to covertly open up but in a most discrete manner my belief in the subterfuge which surrounds all my beliefs. I do most sincerely think we must tear back the veil of secrecy which hides the curtains of fog regarding this matter.

    CC Telegraph. Daily Mail

  35. Stoker says:

    Yes, indeed, the very first thing the Slaberite rag would want to know and shout from the rooftops is the names of these imaginary secret conspirators. I think that’s a dead giveaway.

    So, apart from being the turncoats turncoat, does this make
    Mr.Shoaib THE liar of liars?

    C’mon DR, show and tell, go on, go on, go on, go on, go on.

    The DR – discredited lying bullshitters – the proof is out there.

  36. The Man in the Jar says:

    I am waiting for Labour to come out with,”The SNP say one thing in public and think another thing in private”.

    Same shit different bucket. Yawn!

  37. Patrick Roden says:

    This new found hero of the Labour Party, failed to be selected as an SNP MP candidate, and is facing charges of fraud, from his time in the Labour Party.

    He also described Jim Murphy and his political and personal past, as making Labour a ‘No-Go Area’ for Scotland’s Asian Community.

    You know what us Natz are like, this is already causing a lot of hilarity on twitter, so I would like to open a book on how long it is before the ‘Daily Reword’ pulls this article, because of the embarrassment it is causing Jim Murphy, Labour and the Daily Bullshit.

    5/1 pulled today.

    4/1 pulled tomorrow.

    before Friday Evens.

  38. Luigi says:

    Actually, we should be grateful to the British press and the BBC for their open hostility to Scottish independence. In the short term, sure, their dirty tricks and misinformation spreading do have some negative effect, retaining core support and holding the line (as long as possible). However, their actions are also very effectively at filtering and hardening the YES support. They help to ensure that, once an individual sees through it all and finally converts to independence, there is no turning back.

    Support for YES grows more slowly than it otherwise would, but it is rock solid. And that is a good thing, because I would rather have hard YES people on my side than wishy washy people who are just as likely to switch back when the going gets tough. A person who converts to YES experiences a personal baptism of fire – a purifying, hardening fire. The BBC and British press “forges” have ensured that support for YES is harder than they can ever imagine. In their stupidity the MSM is doing an excellent job for us, and I for one am grateful. I can wait a wee bit more – the end result is now inevitable.

  39. Harry McAye says:

    From Twitter earlier – Mr Ramsay Millar, a Labour activist for 40 years, former Secretary of Labour’s North Lanarkshire Local Govenment Committee, says he joined the SNP on the 3rd of April.

    Front page of Record tomorrow, surely!

  40. Author_Al says:

    This SNP – Tory smearing could all come to an end if McPherson picked up the Pratphone to Carmichael and asked two questions. “Who leaked the memo?” and “Why?” Apparently it will take months.

    This morning I asked my wee daughter – “Who ate a whole Easter Egg before breakfast?” and “Why?” The responses were ‘Me’ and ‘It was too tasty and you should have put it where I can’t get it, Daddy.’

  41. HandandShrimp says:


    I suppose it might raise the question as to where this memo came from. We are assuming that it is a Tory artefact, I certainly did, but I guess that there is a possibility that the document came from the Labour Party and it was pushed out by McTernan through the Telegraph to make it look like a Tory job.

    Both Crosby and McTernan are of the same feather, both would happily play the dark arts all day. The fact that the Record is following through might suggest it is a Labour strategy after all.

  42. saporian says:

    Sorry for going O/T so soon but if you have a proxy vote for a relative please check that it is still in force. My wife set up a proxy vote for her mum who is in a care home last year for the referendum. She has a letter stating that she has a proxy vote for all future elections. She has just been on the phone to the electoral registration office because she didn’t receive a poll card for the proxy vote. She has been told that the proxy vote has been cancelled because of the new individual registration system. So if any readers here have a proxy vote please check that it is still valid.

  43. heedtracker says:

    “I have been a senior member of blah blah blah constituency for years” is pretty good.

    “And as a senior member of blah blah blah constituency. I like to publicly lie about anyone I feel like because that’s what us senior constituency members do do. Further, I feel that me lying in public about other people in my constituency, provides a great example in how to conduct yourself for all the junior members of my constituency. So trust me when I say to you today, Buy the Record, Vote SLabour, Jim Murphy’s NOT creepy, honest.”

  44. Geoff Huijer says:

    Something else missing from the top of their page (right):

    “Anyone but the Tories”.

    Which ones? Red or Blue?

    I demand an answer even though they are efeectively
    one and the same.

  45. Kenny says:

    Tony Blair has been speaking out against the dangers of the SNP coming close to power (the dangers to himself re The Hague, naturally).

    He has also been waxing lyrical on the dangers of holding Scottish independence referenda (it’s called democracy, Tone).

    A vote for the SNP is a step closer to an end to stoking up wars all over the planet, just so the likes of Blair and Cameron can make money through the arms trade.

    Come on, all you undecideds, if you haven’t made up your minds by now….!

  46. X_Sticks says:

    almannysbunnet says:

    “what the fuck is Tony worried about, the Tories in power or the SNP sniffing around Westminster? I think it’s the latter.”

    I think so too amb, the thought of Scots WHO CANNOT BE BOUGHT by the Westminster club getting access to ‘the books’ scares the pants off them. It will NEVER be allowed to happen.

    I believe that if the truth ever got out it would definitely be the end of the union.

  47. Lollysmum says:

    Definitely the latter. SNP MP’s history of being in Westminster shows them to be whistleblowers on corruption & Lib/Lab/Cons deceit of the electorate.

    Tony Blair is bricking it over Iraq War & I’m betting there is much to be found & publicised 🙂

  48. Embradon says:

    The Record staff apparently don’t read the Sunday Mail. Odd that.
    Labour are on the edge of an abyss but, under #creepyjim and with the help of the Record, they can take a big step forward

  49. Craig P says:

    #SNPBoss… haven’t seen so much Boss related mirth in Scotland since Weetabix created a character called ‘Big Baws’..

  50. desimond says:

    OT but we need a laugh..

    Jim Murphy will proudly talk today about Labours plans for a Futures Fund for Scotland.

    A Scottish Futures Fund…now where have we heard that idea before…

    Btw..the plans to help those teenagers who dont get into FE or get an Apprenticeship…hasnt every kid been promised a lucky bag already?

  51. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    If the New Statesman is correct the SNP will have 50+ seats in Scotland.

    No wonder Murphy is looking fucked, because he is.

    Wow not Vow

  52. Fred says:

    Observed Torquil Crichton in George Square on Saturday fiddling with his wee phone. If you think Jim Murphy looks creepy……….

  53. bookie from hell says:

    As Jim stumbles during TV debate tonight–expect a power cut scotland

  54. Author_Al says:

    “Clueless rat jumps off leaky Labour ship into SNP life raft, then jumps back onto Labour sinking ship.”

  55. Capella says:

    Tony could also be arrested in Scotland for war crimes.
    And Nicola says the House of Lords must go so no ermine robes for him once he’s finished raking in his special-peace-envoy-in-the-Middle-East millions.

  56. Fiona says:

    Does anyone honestly imagine that Tony Blair is not toxic?

    I am astonished

  57. Peter Campbell says:

    Although I do recognise the rubbish being put out by The Daily Record and Muhammad Shaoib, I worry about the parallels with the referendum. I remember the continuous rubbish being put out then only for it to be gratefully shot down by our Stu. Well we all know the referendum turned out so I hope there’s no chance the General Election will be going the same way.

    To be honest I wouldn’t be surprised if some in the SNP did see the positive side in a Tory win as they may think it’s hasten independence but as Derek Bateman says, we’ve just had five years of the worst Government ever and we didn’t get independence so it’s not a given we would with the Tories in charge again. So I’m not hoping for a Tory win, my dad would be spinning in his grave!

  58. Dr Jim says:

    To be attacked by every Political party
    To be attacked by every Newspaper
    To be lied about by the Television Media
    To have ex PMs regularly wheeled out against them

    To then be still standing as strong and powerful as they are
    Our SNP Government and teams are a credit to us and it’s no wonder Scotland is in sight of winning the attention it deserves and showing how a Nation can conduct itself

  59. chalks says:

    I’d like to see a concise argument put forward by holding the balance of power and pissing off the south east of england by holding that balance….it’s divide and conquer, Scotland style.

    Nicola just can’t say that us being in power will piss off the south east to such an extent that they’ll be falling over themselves to rip up the union or give us meaningful powers and hopefully shutting us out of the House of Commons forever.

    Now, would folk rather have that, or have the tories in power?

  60. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    The New Statesman poll analysis puts the frenchgate and smear campaign in prespective.

    No wonder Carmichael was insouciant. He is probably fuckeed too.

    Hey, it happens when the voters are sick to the back teeth with your lies.

  61. gillie says:

    Daily Telegraph – Daily Record – NO REAL DIFFERENCE.

  62. Lollysmum says:

    Link to petition for Cameron to apologise to NS is at the bottom of this page if anyone interested (created by someone in England!)

  63. Stoker says:

    Tory Bliar, aka Bush’ poodle, is a pathetic excuse for a human.
    How can we ever forget he is part responsible for the murder and deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent muslims.

    The families of those murder victims continue to suffer to this very day due to the actions of Tory Bliar. How this creep of a human can show his face in public is beyond me.

    Lets also never forget that he is responsible for the unnecessary and untimely deaths of and injuries to thousands of our own troops. He placed them into a situation under a lie which would only lead to their utter humiliation and, sadly, their premature deaths.

    Tory Bliar, you are a obnoxious excuse for a human.

  64. Macart says:

    Good grief.

    All the hallmarks of sour grapes from Mr Shaoib.

    Transparent on his part and desperate from the media.

  65. G. Campbell says:


    Type “Shoaib Associates” into Google:

    Shoaib Associates ::: UK Immigration & Asylum Consultant
    This site may be hacked.

    Why am I seeing this message?

    You’ll see the message “This site may be hacked” when we believe a website may have been hacked. The hacker may have changed some of the existing pages on the site, or added new spam pages. If you visit the site, you may be redirected to spam or malware.

    We recommend that you don’t visit the website until this message disappears from the search result.

  66. Helena Brown says:

    Surely this man is going in the wrong direction, Labour are the Red Tories, they are in cahoots with the Blue Tories and they make no secret of it. What does this gentleman think? Does he support voting Tory to keep the SNP out and if he does how does he live with himself.
    Tony Blair is hardly a resounding advertisement for Ed Miliband and his so called left wing leanings, seems to me Tony is working for Cameron, as there are a whole lot of people who will look at Blair and say I am not voting for some one he endorses.

  67. Lollysmum says:

    Sorry guys & gals-wrong link in last post. Petition here-bottom of page

  68. caz-m says:

    As Mr Muhammad Shoaib runs back to the open arms of his new leader Jim Murphy, he could maybe ask him what his views are on the “turkey shoot” that happened in Palestine recently, when Israel bombed hospitals, mosques, schools, nurseries, and churches, murdering thousands of innocent men, women and children.

    I am sure that “Friend of Israel” member, Mr Murphy, will give him an honest and straight answer.

    And I hope the two of you have a long and happy life together.

  69. Big jock says:

    My personal opinion as an SNP member. I detest the Tories and Labour.

    Who ends up in power at Westminster is actualy irrelevent to me. They both want to hold back Scotland, and both want to continue with austerity.

    The simple answer is really, who cares, they both suck and are both right wing. It’s like asking if you prefer a kick up the arse with a blue shoe when you are looking, or a kick up arse with a red shoe when you aren’t looking . Both are painful, but at least you can see the blue shoe coming before it knocks you over.

  70. Bob Mack says:

    Just had two of the tactical voting numpties at my door not long ago.
    “The union is more important than party politics “quoth he. For the sake of the union he wants me to vote Conservative. He himself is a Labour activist.
    I explained to him that perhaps he should think of the overall outcome of this strategy,which would be.
    1.I intend to vote SNP for the rest of my life till independence is achieved,therefore he needs to be prepared to give up Labour permanently and vote Tory as a tactical vote permanently.
    2The inevitable demise of one or perhaps two of the Unionist Parties,including a result of having to maintain that strategy.
    I think I left him with something to chew on.

  71. CameronB Brodie says:

    I don’t do Facvebook, so can’t check the veracity of this post. That doesn’t appear to hinder the MSM though, so I’ll post and be damned. 🙂

    “Out of a 65,000 ethnic minority population in Scotland, 50,000 are Pakistani Muslim and for them, Jim Murphy is a no go area. He is a supporter of Labour Friends of Israel, and many Muslims feel the Palestinians have been unjustly punished by the Israelis and much of the international community has remained largely silent and he is among that group.”

  72. dakk says:

    MochaChoca. 11.08

    I’m sure we all know Mr Shoaib is a ‘secret’ No, and an opportunist of the highest order.

  73. heedtracker says:

    A Scottish anniversary today

    “On this day in 1320, the Declaration of Arbroath was drawn up at Arbroath Abbey. The Declaration was addressed to Pope John XXII and was intended to confirm that Scotland was an independent state which had the right to defend itself.”

    So as Bomber Blair monsters Scottish democracy for SLabour, via staggeringly corrupt BBC, Daily Record etc, great response from Frankie Boyle,

    Tony Blair, who killed hundreds of thousands “promoting democracy” joins the fray to protest about people voting on something

  74. Fiona says:

    As to wanting a tory government to capitalise on Scottish distaste for tory policies and so bring independence forward. Piffle.

    It seems obvious to me that tories are already as toxic as they can get: anyone who needs further convincing is not going to change, IMO: there are no votes for independence in that at all.

  75. Karmanaut says:

    Do we see *one single person* of the 106,000 SNP members saying that they want the Tories to win?

    Er, no.

    And yet this weekend we saw Labour activists being bought lunch by the Tories for actually CAMPAIGNING for the Tory candidate to win!

    Oh, the irony.

  76. “SNP boss” – Yeah like the Cowdenbeath substitute full-back is the boss of Scottish football. This guy’s a bit of a non entity.. and a rank bad yin… ( Shoaib, not the full-back)..

    Mr Shoaib is a former Labour councillor who was forced to deny allegations that he billed constituents for advice in 1998. He also fought a three-year legal battle to clear his name after facing benefit fraud charges in 2003. A Sheriff delivered a not proven verdict.

    If this story commands three pages, then the Record will have to bring out a bumper, encyclopaedia sized, issue to cover all the Labour folks jumping the other way.

    For propaganda to be successful it has to be subtle. Only a half wit would read this and see it reflecting badly on the SNP. It just smacks of desperation and is utterly laughable.

    To be stupid enough to be taken in by crap like this, means you’re stupid enough to vote Labour anyway.

    The real ‘secret’ Tory story is the tactical voting urged by Labour to stop the SNP, like this from the Shetland Labour candidate…. “Vote for the UK party that most closely reflects your views (and get involved if they don’t adequately do so) and don’t vote SNP”.

    Hardly a clarion call to vote Labour and hardly ‘secret’ either.

  77. missy scott says:

    Sounds like he has been an attempted SLab plant into the SNP – and that has clearly backfired. Has he been Labour all along? Looks like it!

  78. Macca73 says:

    X_Sticks says:

    7 April, 2015 at 11:22 am

    almannysbunnet says:

    “what the fuck is Tony worried about, the Tories in power or the SNP sniffing around Westminster? I think it’s the latter.”

    I think so too amb, the thought of Scots WHO CANNOT BE BOUGHT by the Westminster club getting access to ‘the books’ scares the pants off them. It will NEVER be allowed to happen.

    I believe that if the truth ever got out it would definitely be the end of the union.

    I tend to agree with this statement. They will do anything they can both in red and blue colours to stop this from happening.

    The coup wheels are in motion again but this time they are currently behind the wheel and we’ve got the brake lines!

    Car Crash TV awaits watching this election I tell you!! 🙂

  79. caz-m says:

    Bugger (the Panda) 11.27am

    Re: Amount of seats gained.

    I am at the stage now, that I am surprised that Labour will win ANY seats.

    Who in their right mind is going to return a Labour MP to represent them at Westminster.

    What is so surprising about Scotland sending 59 SNP MPs back to Westminster.

    Am I getting over-confident BtP?

    Am I needing reigned in a bit?

    Have I lost the plot?

    And no, I don’t drink or take drugs.

  80. think again says:

    Mr Shoaib and Jim Murphy have a lot in common for example they seem to change their policies and viewpoint every time the wind changes.

    I am sure that Jim is secretly pleased that Mr Shoaib has re-joined the fold just in time for the leaders` debate tonight and will describe Mr Shoaib`s comments about him being a Tory as friendly banter and to be expected during a campaign.

    Strikes me though that it is now a case of being back inside the tent and pissing inside it at the same time.

    Good luck tonight Jim.

  81. peekay says:

    I heard Murray Foote is secretly a good journalist

  82. Pre debate agenda setting to hide the fact that they don’t have a clue.

    I am confident that tonight’s debate will be about 2016 and not the General Election as Slabber do not seem to understand the difference.

    With regards to the PM post, I’m afraid that I am a None of the above.

    The SNP will represent Scotland, of that I’m sure. MSM can bat their gums all they want. I don’t believe them.

  83. ronnie anderson says:

    To all you,s Tree Hugging Wingers,this will be rite up your street.

    Daily Record is to Use Recycled Paper for printing, & asked me to pass on they message to you,s Wingers.

    Its ah save the Planet Initutive

    Dont Flush your Toilet Paper , send Freepost to Daily Record.

  84. HandandShrimp says:


    I agree and I think Derek is right. A Tory win is definitely a second best opportunity. Balance of power with Labour is by far a more workable opportunity. The Tories cannot be trusted and any promises they make are worthless. A Tory win would deliver little for Scotland.

  85. Karmanaut says:

    The timing of this “defection” is interesting – as others have noted. Given the fake Scotland Office memo (that Labour knew about in advance and had even prepared a vine for).

    Now, imagine the French Ambassador and the Consul General *hadn’t* blown the fake memo story out of the water? Just imagine if they’d done what most diplomats do and said “no comment” to the smear against NS?

    If that had happened, then this “defection” at this precise time would have added serious weight to those allegations.

    This is a plan unfolding. Wouldn’t surprise me if we see more this week.

  86. Stoker says:

    Helena Brown wrote:
    “Surely this man is going in the wrong direction,”

    Of course he is, Helena, and Author_Al puts it perfectly thus:

    “Clueless rat jumps off leaky Labour ship into SNP life raft, then jumps back onto Labour sinking ship.”

    It’s impossible to fathom the depths of stupidity.
    Don’t even try, lifes too short.

  87. caz-m says:

    gillie 11.37am

    “Daily Telegraph – Daily Record – NO REAL DIFFERENCE.”

    Spot on.

    Editor of the Record and the Editor of the Telegraph have one aim, to show up Scotland as a basket case, that will get nowhere in the world without the support of the English Establishment.

  88. Barontorc says:

    On the apparent composure of Carmichael as he looks at probable defeat via the coming polls, it’s not dis-similar to the confident outwards appearance of Cameron as the Referendum approached and with all signs pointed YES – which begged the question then and may again do so now; what’s cooking?

    Am I alone in thinking that we are getting stitched up again by the voting process being manipulated?

    On a post above we’re told that prior proxy votes have been removed and that these need to be renewed personally.

    That 600,000 ‘ineligible’ voters have been removed from the voting register AFTER the Referendum.

    That there is widespread voting fraud by folks with residences here and elsewhere in the UK voting more than once.

    That there is an enormous increase in postal votes trending over the past five years and that postal voter security cannot be vouchsafed.

    That we are utterly dependent for the probity of our voting system on the Electoral Commission alone and that there seems to be no validation and performance criteria applied to it – despite many complaints over issues during the Referendum.

    So, is there a reason for the smugness on certain faces?

  89. HandandShrimp says:


    It looks like that although unfolding is perhaps too generous. Splatting like a cow pancake onto an unforgiving surface is more apt. 🙂

  90. Kenny says:

    Stu, did you notice that, bizarrely, when this story was first put up online, they kept using the personal pronoun “her” for the honourable gentleman, instead of “him”?

    Now, I know the Daily Record is not big on intellect (some of the articles are so bad I honestly believe they are personally penned by Margaret Curran).

    But not even a seven year-old child makes mistakes like that. It seems to me that there may have been a batch of “SNP scandals” planned long in advance, ready to be quickly put into print…

    In which case the original plan may have had some woman “defector” in mind.

    This desperate non-story, when it is the Red Tories who are OPENLY canvassing for the Blue Tories in Scotland,* suggests that “Westminster in Scotland” is as bankrupt in ideas as it is in economic policy. They will probably still be beating this dead horse come the Holyrood elections in 2016!

    [* A question for Pravda reporters: if you were given the Rosamond choice of running this REAL story or drinking a cup of poison, which would you choose?]

  91. Fiona says:

    @ Karmanaut

    Agree this is a plan unfolding. But see when the first step of a plan fails in its entirety, I am not sure it is sensible to keep on with that plan.

  92. ronnie anderson says:

    And what TWO TONE TONY didnt say my TTPI masters are pulling my strings,wie thoosands an thoosands o poonds.

    Not now focused on Scotland, aye rite Tony.

  93. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    FAO Will Podmore: I’d really like to publish your dissenting comments, for the sake of balance. But I don’t know how much fucking clearer I can make the comment rules on the subject of paragraph breaks, or how many more times I have to say it, including addressing you directly on a number of occasions.

    The rules are the same for everyone, including you. No exceptions. We have a preview pane for a goddamn reason.

  94. Casper1066 says:

    Maybe he was a secret spy for Labour, but couldn’t get anything so left with the help of clever voters. But people are not listening now. They have weighted up the pros and cons and who is lying to them. @snpboss007

  95. Michael says:

    The link to common space isn’t working. Anyone able to reproduce the article?

  96. DerekM says:

    So its taken days for the record to find the “source” to save their wee pal Cookie over in BBC Scotlandshire ,and look its one of them saying nobody actually said it but i could see it in their eyes they wanted the tories but im not telling who its a secret,well knock me down with a feather,sack mystic Meg and Paul the octopus and give this guy the job.

    But congratulations Sir you managed to pass the re-entry exam to be in SLAB by talking rubbish in the Daily Record.
    Jim will be so proud.

    Labour are so inept at doing anything its like they are in self destruct mode its astonishing ,ehh wasnt that us that did that oops did we go to far hmmm nope 🙂
    But i do think its time to turn on the wings spotlight over the tories or we might get accused of letting them in and that Rev is a secret tory lol

  97. Iain Gray's Subway Lament says:

    Dirty tricks, lies and smears are all they have left.

    Pretty suicidal considering the response we are getting on the doorstep and in the streets to this bullshit is anger and disgust at the Labour party with more of their voters coming over to our side all the time. Something that’s also backed up by poll after poll after poll.

    The smearers just don’t get it happily, 🙂

  98. Papadox says:

    Another self serving trougher Mr shaoib will carry any flag so long as he gets a place at the trough. This type of professional troughfer is most certainly not wanted in the SNP, SLAB is certainly the party for him and his ilk. Keep Scottish politics clean. We do not want WESTMINSTER type government we want something much better.

    Tony, obviously worried about his bank balance and manipulation of politics slipping from his influence. Tony’s favourite song MONEY MONEY MONEY. sounds left wing to me.

    All these religious socialists: Tony, Broon, Wee Douggie makes you wonder what’s going on.

  99. Onwards says:

    Why would labour press the ‘secret Tory’ accusation when they still haven’t responded to Nicola’s challenge?

    Would labour work with the SNP to stop the Tories forming a government if they weren’t the largest party?

    No need for secrets – get that right out in the open!

  100. Marcia says:

    For those who cannot access the link Nana put up, here is what the article says;

    Exclusive: SNP “defector” remains a member of the SNP and says he supports Labour-SNP deal

    Daily Record claim that Shoaib has “resigned from SNP in disgust” is debunked

    A YES campaigner who was reported as “defecting” to the Labour party by the Daily Record in a much-hyped front page splash has said he in fact remains a member of the SNP, a supporter of independence and favourable to a Labour-SNP deal at Westminster.

    On Tuesday, the Daily Record ran a front-page story (click here to read) claiming that Nicola Sturgeon had suffered a “major setback” after activist Muhammad Shoaib was said to have joined the Labour party.

    Hyping the story up, the tabloid title branded Shoaib an ‘SNP boss’, although it is unclear why. Shoaib is a former Labour councillor and organiser of Scots Asians for Independence. He joined the SNP in 2007.

    However, Shoaib has told CommonSpace that while he does want to see a Labour government ahead of the Tories – he would like to see Labour and the SNP work together in a “loose” arrangement following May’s vote.

    “Basically, I’ve not joined Labour and I’m still officially a member of the SNP,” said Shoaib.

    Shoaib claimed that he has been under significant “community pressure” and that his position has not changed from 2010 when he also said he would like to see a Labour government at Westminster.

    “I’ve been under a lot of community pressure to come out and say that I support a Labour government. But in 2010 election, I went on BBC and was asked which party do you support in England and my answer was same as I gave to the Daily Record yesterday.”

    When asked what his prefered outcome would be for the 7 May election, Shoaib said that one party would in government would create more “stability”.

    However, he stated that he was favourable towards a Labour-SNP post-election pact.

    Shaoib said: “Obviously it is one of my wishes that both parties should work together in some sort of loose arrangement.

    “Both parties have made it clear they don’t want a coalition, but they can decide on vote by vote basis.

    “They could give a more positive government to give our children a better future.”

    The Daily Record claimed that Shoaib believed SNP members secretly wanted a Conservative victory in May’s election.

    However, when speaking to CommonSpace, Shoaib failed to confirm this. Instead, he raised concerns that
    implicit SNP support for the Green party in England would help the Tories.

    Shoaib, who has previously been a Labour councillor, put his name forward as an SNP candidate for Westminster earlier this year but lost out in a selection battle to Alison Thewliss.

    In December 2014, Shoaib had been critical of Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy, commenting that he is a “no go area” for Muslims.

    He was quoted in the Herald at the time as saying: “Jim Murphy – his past is basically supporting an illegal war in Iraq. He never came out and condemned the Gaza bombings. From a Muslim perspective, those were unforgivable.”

    When CommonSpace asked Shoaib if he felt Murphy was the right man to lead Scottish Labour, he said: “I’m not a member of the Labour party so I can’t comment on that.”

    Shaoib, who is an organiser of Scots Asians for Independence, insisted that he remains a committed supporter of Scottish independence.

    “I still hold independence close to my heart. I will still work for Yes whenever the opportunity arises,” he told CommonSpace.

    According to opinion polls, the SNP is set to significantly increase its seats at the forthcoming election and with a hung parliament likely, Labour may be relient on its support in order to form a government.

  101. carjamtic says:

    Bit by bit, they chip away,until in the end there will be nothing left,society is diminished,confusion created,then shrug it off,”these things happen” as if, nothing.

    We need more democracy,more openess and more humanity

    We need these people removed from their privileged positions,they do not respect our society,represent our nation.

    Thanks Rev. More power to your elbow.

  102. PRJ says:

    I am amazed at the number of people posting on this web site believing the story in the Record and criticising Shoaib. A rebuttal story has been published at Common Space.

  103. Michael says:

    Good work from Common Space.

  104. Author_Al says:

    Rev – Can Will Podmore come off the Naughty Step and out to play now? We’ve got a new game – ‘Hunt the Memo’.

  105. Michael says:

    Just a pity you can’t get on to their web site.

  106. Nana Smith says:


    From commonspace twitter…

    Apologies to those who can’t get onto our exclusive article debunking today’s Daily Record front page – huge traffic surge! Keep trying.

  107. Michael says:

    Thanks, Nana. God, it’s great when we all work together isn’t it. A wee tear in the ee just now thinking just how much we’ve achieved.

  108. Craig Macinnes says:

    Thank God he’s gone back to Labour. The man was a complete charlatan, a total chancer

  109. ronnie anderson says:

    Aw Rev dont uas the Hammer on Podmore am getting tae hate the sight of aw the blood spilt,turn yersel intae ah Thugee I,ll send the Scarf n the Rupee oan tae you.

  110. HandandShrimp says:

    Things get weirder and weirder over at Record land

    If Common Space are right, and they appear to be talking to the man himself, then the Record have produced a steaming pile of rancid mince.

    The picture of Anas, Magrit and Mr Shoaib, would that date from before 2007? If so the Record are in serious lying territory.

  111. Nana Smith says:


    You are so welcome.

    There is so much going on right now with many articles relevant to the election my head is spinning trying to keep up!

    Marcia at 12.37 managed to capture the article.

  112. Kenny says:

    Totally unrelated news:

    1. The Common Space tech team inform us we suffered server attack shortly after posting exclusive debunking Daily Record front-page today.

    2. New Snowden Docs Reveal British Spy Agency Tactic To Manipulate Social Media

    Manipulating the results of online polls, artificially inflating pageview counts, spoofing email accounts — the U.K.’s secretive GCHQ can do it all, and maybe more.

  113. Tommy says:

    “Anyone but the Tories (And UKIP)”

    So the Daily Record has come to it’s senses and now wants people to vote SNP presumably?

  114. crazycat says:

    I don’t suppose this is going to survive long:

    so could someone who knows how to preserve it for posterity please do so?

  115. Stoker says:

    HandandShrimp wrote:
    “If so the Record are in serious lying territory.”


    PRJ wrote:
    “I am amazed at the number of people posting on this web site believing the story in the Record and criticising Shoaib.”

    I think you’ll find the vast majority of us wouldn’t urinate on the DR if it was on fire, never mind believe anything it prints.

  116. Hope you don’t mind me using the pages of Wings to advertise my new business..

    I’m going to be running shite throwing classes. Over the course of a three week programme I will work intensively with clients in a series of practical workshops.

    The course aims to teach clients how to throw excreta, without getting it all over themselves.

    Already I can boast Murray Foote, Alistair Carmichael and Kezia Dugdale as clients who’ve signed up.

  117. bjsalba says:

    When I saw this item a musical worm popped into my head and I can’t get rid of it!

    Do you want to know a secret
    Do you promise not to tell, whoa oh, oh


  118. K.A.Mylchreest says:

    FFS is this the best they can do? Very disappointing! When do we get those juicy pictures of Eck eating babies, or details of Nicla’s secret affair with a rhinoceros? Are today’s Scots fiction writers (aka ‘tabloid journalists’) entirely without inspiration?

  119. Edward says:

    Brian McNeill @ 3:31 pm
    Just beat me to it!

    Have been looking at that and another on same topic

    Apparently the Daily Record’s ‘SNP Boss’ was the Sunday Mail’s ‘Mr Fix-It’ in 2006

  120. Davy says:

    Secretly I believe this is a “Daily Rat” waste of time story but I can’t tell you about it cause it’s a secret.

    But last night watching Willie Rennie trying not to say his party was up to their neck in the frenchgate/memogate lies about our First Minster and how the whole world should wait until the head of the civil service makes his report was actually ball crunching. (look a squirrel)

    The devious little swine and the rest of his devious but dumb party will hopefully become extinct and frankly they will not be missed, and that is not a secret. (bang – no more squirrel)

  121. Brian McNeill says:

    well the story has been “removed from my link not yours though!” post the story text on facebook let it go viral!

  122. steve says:

    Christ I wish the election would hurry up and put these poor bastards out their misery.

  123. Hi guys, thanks to whoever added a link to my site above (about a Red Tory in Wales smearing Sturgeon and deleting the tweets) but there was never a link on there about the Miliband petition.

    I have since added the link but I’ll also post it here as well for all those who don’t want to click through to one page just to click through to another.

  124. Patrick Roden says:

    @ craycat,

    All you have to do is ‘re-tweet’ her tweet, and all your ‘followers’ will get a copy.

    If you right click on the tweet it will probably allow you the option of saving her tweet as a picture.

  125. Effijy says:

    Of course old Tony wants liebore to win as this would ensure he won’t stand trial for mass murder during the illegal Iraqi war.

    We Plebs stand in wonder whether he s worth £60, 000,000
    or £80,000,00 these days and if he actually pays Tax anywhere?

    Of course as a Leading Socialist, he has his own charity
    so that his expenses can be drawn down from there.

    Fair enough when we have no Food Banks, NHS Shortages, Zero Hours contracts and no pay rises, but Tony we DO!

  126. Ken500 says:

    What a load of rubbish. Foote is really scrapping the barrel. Bad apple. More lost readership.

    Blair and causing havoc. Do any of them think before they speak? The illegal war the world did not want caused by Blair lies. Brown/Blair should be in jail. The Chilcot verdict being blocked by unelected civil servants.

  127. Will Podmore says:

    kenny claimed, “A vote for the SNP is a step closer to an end to stoking up wars all over the planet,” If only!
    In the real world, Alex Salmond said he would not have ruled out war against Syria and the SNP backed NATO’s imperialist wars against Afghanistan and Libya.
    When the British people managed to stop the warmongers by making their MPs vote against attacking Syria, Scotland’s Labour MPs tipped the balance against war.
    But the SNP wants to take Scottish MPs out of the place where they could make a difference to Britain’s foreign policy.

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