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The sewer press

Posted on January 05, 2016 by

So, this appeared in the Herald today:


And that’s a problem, because it’s a complete and utter lie.

The article – penned by the paper’s David Leask, a man with a truly extraordinary degree of hostility towards this site, although we’ve never criticised him – alleges that we called the former Labour MP Anne Begg a “Nazi”. We have never done so.

The source for the smear is an article we published on 22 September 2014, a few days after the independence referendum. The short piece contained a picture of Begg campaigning earlier that month alongside the National Front’s organiser in Scotland, David MacDonald.


MacDonald had published the picture on the NF website, along with others taken on the same day. The blog post claimed that “Dave spoke to Ann [sic] Begg MP and shared a joke with her regarding our photographer”, before adding approvingly that “Ann Begg is disabled but has done a fantastic job for her constituents in Aberdeen.”

(In the Herald piece Begg appears to confirm the description, saying “I am laughing in the picture because he made some comment about the friend in the picture.”)


In some of the pics, MacDonald and another NF activist can be seen with Scottish Labour campaign material. In the shot below, he’s standing at a Scottish Labour “No” stand holding a Labour leaflet and a Labour newspaper, just in front of Labour activist Greg Williams (in the red t-shirt).


Williams is the current Scottish Labour candidate for Aberdeen Donside, the seat that Dave MacDonald unsuccessfully contested for the National Front in 2013.

Labour’s history with MacDonald and the NF in Aberdeen goes back a lot further than that, however. In 2004 Anne Begg was one of three Labour MPs who asked police to prevent an NF march organised by MacDonald in the city. MacDonald is an avid self-publicist, having made news in 2011 for selling golliwogs to fund that year’s Holyrood election campaign, in which he was a list candidate in the North-East region.

He likes to put his picture on election leaflets, like this 2013 one:


And the BBC used the one above in their report on his candidacy:


He also appeared twice on STV news during the campaign, the second of which was an interview almost five minutes long:

He could also be seen on TV at the count, standing (appropriately enough) on the far right of the stage while victorious SNP candidate Mark McDonald makes his speech.

(We can’t be certain as the person has their back to camera, but this STV News report shows someone who looks very likely to have been Anne Begg in the hall.)


In short, then, the idea that any Labour activist, let alone MP, in the area wouldn’t know Dave MacDonald on sight is farcical, unless they’re even more spectacularly inept than anyone already thinks. Last night on Twitter Mark McDonald said of his NF near-namesake “Almost everyone in ABZ [Aberdeen] politics knows who he is”.

(Coincidentally, the subject had arisen on the social-media network because of a feature in The National reporting that the NF leader had been elected to a community council in Aberdeen, illustrated with one of the pics from September 2014. During the discussion, when the Begg connection had come up again, we’d happened to comment that “I don’t think she’s a Nazi or anything”.)

Nevertheless, knowing who Dave MacDonald was obviously wouldn’t mean that Anne Begg sympathised with any of his politics – most people know who Nick Griffin is, but that doesn’t mean they support the BNP – and at no point did the Wings article claim that she did. Yet the Herald says:

“The unsubstantiated suggestion on Twitter and Facebook: that she had campaigned with “Nazis” against Scottish independence. Dame Anne said: ‘The last thing you want to happen is for your politics to be defined by something that is a complete lie.'”

But that suggestion isn’t “unsubstantiated” at all, nor is it a any kind of lie, complete or otherwise. She can clearly be seen doing it. Even if her claim that she didn’t know who MacDonald was were implausibly to be true, she’s still campaigning with him.

The Herald continues:

“The campaign – which continues today on social media – began after the image was used by a pro-independence blogger called Wings over Scotland.”

We’re not sure what’s meant by “the campaign” there. According to the Herald’s own reporting, Begg has retired from politics.


Indeed, the whole article is rather vague and evasive on a considerable number of things, including the nature of the abuse Begg allegedly suffered as a result of the image being published. Leask’s piece goes on:


But the image above, whose source is not identified, doesn’t call Begg a Nazi either. It simply points out the empirical fact that she was seen campaigning with Dave MacDonald. Begg is then quoted saying:

“I spent my life avoiding anybody from the National Front. So how would I know who this person was? Clearly I did not. Wings over Scotland and others made sure that that was not the story.”

Again, it’s not at all clear what that means. We didn’t cover the incident again after the original short piece on 22 September. We don’t know what the “story” Begg is referring to is, but the Herald claims that the picture “has changed her life” in unspecified ways.

The entire article is a bizarre concoction of lie and innuendo backed by no evidence whatsoever. Not a single quote is given in support of the opening sentence’s claim that Begg has been called “Nazi scum” by anyone, and we’ve been unable to find a single example on social media of anything remotely close.

The print edition of the paper carries a shortened version of the piece, with a prominent picture of this site’s editor (that is, me) under a lurid headline about a “HORRIBLE ACCUSATION THAT I BACKED NAZIS”:


The Herald also prominently plugged the story on the “most popular stories” sidebar which accompanies every page on its website with the same words, except this time specifically and falsely attributed to us:


Since we found out and complained, the paper has changed the website and sidebar text, although without any acknowledgement of doing so or any apology:


The new versions are barely any less defamatory. Our entirely truthful article is still portrayed as the reason for the (unseen, unproven) abuse and “bullying” allegedly suffered by Begg. The statement that we accused her of “backing Nazis” is still utterly untrue. There is no evidence that she was “Called a Nazi on Twitter” by anyone.

The Herald has not responded to our attempts to contact it. It will be hearing from our solicitors. We’ll keep you up to date with any developments. But whatever they may be, they won’t mask the rancid stench of the gutter coming from a Scottish press that’s still ragingly furious with anyone who dares to hold it to account.

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  1. 05 01 16 12:44

    The sewer press | Speymouth

260 to “The sewer press”

  1. hamish says:

    My main reason for getting the “Herald” was the column by Ian bell. I can no longer stomach the coverage and very poor sub-editing.

    Too many Unionists for me !

  2. schrodingers cat says:

    blatant lie from herald

    demand a withtraction, an apology and take them for every penny they have got

  3. scottieDog says:

    It’s why more and more people are turning their backs on these nutters in the MSM.
    Had a colleague tell me today she didn’t want to go to the January sales in London through fear of terrorism. I told her the smog would kill her first or a taxi. It’s incredible how people get taken in

  4. heedtracker says:

    Just when you think UKOK hacks and SLab cant sink any lower…
    Take them to court.

    Twitter has a good angle on British media attacking Scots voters

    “Scotland: the only country in the world where the press believe it’s their duty to hold the electorate to account?” for not voting who they tell us to.

  5. Fergus Green says:

    Prominent front page apology required in Herald.

    Otherwise Stuart – sue the arses off them!

  6. Cath says:

    Good luck with the case Stu. The irony is that if the Scottish media, and the Labour Party, had in any way been holding Better Together to account this kind of picture would never have happened. It was their eagerness to embrace, confone and glorify anyone who supported the beloved Union and waved a Union Jack, however extremist, racist or abusive they were without asking questions that saw some real uglies become prominent faces and voices in that campaign. Meanwhile as they bullied and abused yes campaigners, the media, Labour and Tories ignored them at best, applauded at worst.

    Had they been holding their own campaign to account properly, people like Anne would have been distanced from this kind of guy even if she didn’t know who he was.

  7. Donald Anderson says:

    I hope you will take this further other than the useless press complaints procedure.

    Can you bring up her, and Unionist’s past public accusations about the SNP/Alex Salmond Hitler/Nazis allegations, which I believe she was forced to retract at the time?

    Today’s National front page shows MacDonald elected to an Aberdeen Community Council.

    Just heard the Andrew Neil show refer to the Scottish National Party as the Scottish NationalIST Party for the umpteenth time. I mam sure they know very well the difference. I do hope someone tries to bring them to task.

  8. Albaman says:

    Bloody well go an get them Stew, and if you need any “crowd funding” against the might of the “free press”, I’m sure we all will contribute .

  9. Ken500 says:

    The Press are an insult being paid by tax evading Non Doms. They just make people angry. They are so ignorant they are putting themselves out of a job. A Labour/Unionist Party that killed and maimed millions in the Middle East, supported tax evasion and bank fraud. Wasted £Billions. Campaigned with Tories to tell a pack of lies, defraud Scotland, sanction and starve the vulnerable. They should hang their heads in shame.

  10. Helena Brown says:

    Go get them Stuart, fed up with being called a Nazi and that is the reason nobody on our side would use that term. It does a disservice to many of whose parents fought against the real ones to use that term lightly and I read your comment on twitter and you said nothing of the sort.

  11. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Go get ’em Floyd

    -any chance that as part of the apology they will allow you publish their apology to be exactly the same size and position in the paper that the original accusation was?

    What about Anne Begg, as she is equally as culpable?

  12. Black Joan says:

    SNP Bad and WoS Bad. In fact, WoS doubleplus Bad for drawing attention to prevalence of SNP Bad. Inevitable, innit? And, presumably, actionable.

    Oh, and SNP even more bad for not denouncing Bad WoS in strongest possible terms for something Bad WoS didn’t do.

  13. Helena Brown says:

    See what you mean about a certain DH, go get him as well.

  14. StoviesPlz says:

    It was just a clumsy headline apparently

    “@LeaskyHT 42 minutes ago

    @Stoviesplz The headline hasn’t changed. We had a clumsy SEO header for about 15mins. It wasn’t the “original”.”

  15. gus1940 says:

    Go for it Stu – Sue the bastards.

    Incidentally who owns the copyright on the photo of yourself which they printed?

  16. george says:

    lie piled on smear piled on baseless accusation. the herald has not behaved well.

    this incident is a very good advert for the case in favour of same-prominence newspaper retractions and apologies.

  17. Suzanne says:

    Go get ’em. Seems the corporate media have decided to leave truth locked up in the cellar.

  18. K1 says:

    Aye Stu, crowd fund if necessary, right behind you on this…shower of utter defamatory liars.

    It’s beyond shameful what these purveyors of poison produce to further their little gravy trains…the Herald has, with this destroyed the tiny bit of ‘credible’ reputation it had left as a ‘broadsheet’ newspaper in Scotland.

    Shower of shoddy spivs shafting the people of Scotland.

  19. Wulls says:

    Hoist by their own petard.
    Both of them.
    She clearly campaigned with McDonald during the referendum and to deny she knew who he is beggars belief.
    The Herald have gone so far down in my estimation they are approaching the lofty position held by the daily record.
    Both circling the drain.
    Sue them.

  20. Truth says:

    I recently completed the purchase of my first house and later on the same week lost my job.

    Nevertheless, if you need to crowdfund legal action I want to help. I am incensed at this.

  21. Joemcg says:

    This is not an anti-disabled comment I’m curious as to why Begg wasted hundreds of thousands of pounds in taxpayers cash travelling expensively by flight to London when she could have been an MSP? Not the filthy luchre higher salary by any chance?

  22. Davie says:

    I had a comment under the piece removed almost instantly. It was perfectly brief and respectful and ran along the lines of:

    ‘There will be a simple legal test. If Dame Begg felt she was unfairly discredited or lied about she could and should have sued.

    As it is, it appears likely that Mr Leask will be asking his boss to write a cheque to the Rev Murdoch in the near future.’

    The Herald. To think I used to buy it.

  23. Luigi says:

    “It will be hearing from our solicitors”

    Yes! Go get em, Rev. 🙂

  24. Desimond says:

    I “suggest” you take them to the cleaners.

    Next week we should get “When Wings were in shorts trousers they wanted the Queen dead when thinking aboutbuying a Smiths album”

  25. Peter Clive says:

    This tweet does rather describe the situation witht he media in Scotland very aptly

    “Scotland: the only country in the world where the press believe it’s their duty to hold the electorate to account?”

  26. Itchybiscuit says:

    The headline in HS should have read: ‘Unionist politician bemoans loss of job while unsuccessfully trying to blame external sources for her electoral defeat’.

    But that’s just not snappy enough. How about, Britnat ex-pol says SNP and Social Media are BAD’.

    Nah, less is more ‘WingsBad!’.

  27. Rab Dickson says:

    I think this is a personal disdain from Leask towards Wings.
    I really don’t believe (as I’ve read) that Leask is any sort of ‘Brinat stooge’quite the opposite in fact.

    I had many conversations with Leask and he is a smart cookie, but his personal style is aloof and a bit elitist.
    His self regard leads him to too easily dismiss folk as “zealots”

    This is a pretty stupid headline and piece in my opinion born as I said, from a personal dislike.

    Whilst I have called Leask a few choice names myself (for blocking me on twitter for hee haw) I really don’t think he is anti Yes in any way.
    He is, in his own way, the type of zealot he professes to dislike. Only he cannot see it as it is his profession and personal pride in it that leads to his zealotry.

    I think he will come to regret this article…..and so he should.It’s pretty dimwitted

  28. Wuffing Dug says:

    Sue the bastards.


  29. Indysilverfox says:

    After the Carmichael leak being so quickly debunked, you’d have thought it would take a very brave journo to not check sources or give them a chance to respond before publishing.

    Seems not.

    They should be hauled over the coals. But of course the paper is relying on a minimal-profile apology. Do what you can to have that given the same prominence – make a principled stand Stu.

    The MSM must learn from their repeated mistakes. And the SNP must call them out on it more often.

  30. Luigi says:

    I expect there will be quite a few Scottish Labour ex-MPs greetin and playing the victim, now that they are no longer able to sit around all day, drinking cups of tea in the Westminster tearoom.

  31. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Can you bring up her, and Unionist’s past public accusations about the SNP/Alex Salmond Hitler/Nazis allegations, which I believe she was forced to retract at the time?”

    Are you getting confused with Ann Moffat?

  32. Kenny MacLaren says:

    It’s unbelievable that Begg didn’t know about MacDonald’s NF affiliation. Not only is Mr MacDonald notorious in Aberdeen, but Unison Scotland regularly tracked the National Front’s actions in Scotland and regularly issued reports if the NF were standing for elections. These reports were distributed to Unison members in areas where the NF was active, and I believe, Ms Begg’s election agent was a Unison Scotland official who was well aware of MacDonald’s connection with the NF.

  33. Macart says:

    Just incredible.

    Somehow I suspect any apology won’t be placed as prominently.

  34. Wee_monsieur says:

    Go Stu!

  35. God almighty says:

    If the story wont go away maybe she should instead of bringing it up, but good to see wings set straight for all the new readers they will get from article. #SwingsAndRoundabouts

  36. Dcamore says:

    Leask has the ball… he’s in front of goal… HE SHOOTS…

    it’s miles wide of the mark *falls on arse*

  37. Bob Sinclair says:

    Right on cue, this year’s WoS fundraiser, courtesy of a legally inept media.

  38. Luigi says:

    During the independence campaign, Scottish Labour politicians had a simple choice. They were right to campaign for what they believed in. However, they were most certainly not obliged to share platforms or demos with tories (or worse). In desperation and panic, they chose to do so, and now, they reap what they sow. They supped with the devil in order the thwart the aspirations of a generation. They paid for it, and they will continue to pay for it, until we are independent.

  39. Jack Murphy says:

    Main article read and shared.
    Words fail me.

  40. crisiscult says:

    just after the referendum, some believed it was their duty to go to the websites of the MSM and post comments to counter the propaganda. Guys, please don’t even visit.

  41. John H. says:

    Saw the Day Mail front page headline today In Aldi concerning an SNP mp. That looked actionable to me too. How do these people get away with it?

  42. Swami Backverandah says:

    @ Scottie Dog
    “Had a colleague tell me today she didn’t want to go to the January sales in London through fear of terrorism. I told her the smog would kill her first or a taxi. It’s incredible how people get taken in”

    Had a recent acquaintance tell me she’d like to visit Australia, but was concerned about being killed by the nasty wildlife creatures.
    I told her she was more likely to die in UK from toxic Tory/Labour policies.
    After a moment’s reflection, she agreed.

    Sue the gutter bastards, Stu, and let’s ring in hope for some decent political representation of the ordinary folk in the near future.

    Happy New Year to all

    (I know it’s late, but it’s not yet of Chilcot proportions 😀

  43. Les Wilson says:

    You are right to speak to your solicitor,and go for the jugular of this crap paper.

    We have had and are still getting the politics of fear in Scotland aided and abetted with the politics of SMEAR.

    It is all the Unionists can find as, somehow a case against Independence. We need to meet this stuff head on, if not you Stu, then who will!

    A dossier of the Tories and the Labour offenders of the law, corruption, child abuse, drug abuse and all the other things they seem to get away with, should be written and published. It would make great leaflet stuff for the elections.

    Done over the period the SNP has been in power for comparison, would show them for what they really are.

  44. Fred says:

    Well done Stu.

  45. yesindyref2 says:

    @Rab Dickson
    Totally agree with your posting. He is, however, the only journalist that comments or rather replies below the line. Tends to be dismissive of the comment all the same, even when it’s an opinion. But his articles are good, and even this one has balance in it.

    What’s happened though is he’s become aware the Herald is getting a lot of criticism and rather than look to see if there’s justification for that criticism – there is – he’s instantly leapt to its defence “I’ve been in the industry for 20 years but hey, what would I know?”. A paraphrase of a reply he made below the line to quite an innocuous though critical posting.

    I hope he settles down, as many of his articles are good. He has empathy with whoever he interviews, in this case it’s Begg, but it could just as well be Sturgeon.

    Personally I think he’s a bit pro-yes.

  46. I wish you every success in your legal action against the herald.

    As for Ms Begg’s denial that she didn’t know that D. MacDonald was a member of the NF.

    She could easily have found out what his party affiliation if she had wanted to.

  47. Capella says:

    The MSM have correctly identified WoS as the main opposition to their anti-democratic activities. This is probably the first in a series of smears designed to turn people away from WoS in the run-up to the 2016 election.

    Attempting to destroy democracy is not pretty. I’d support a crowd fund to defend the good name of WoS against these shysters and their not-so-sly innuendo.

  48. yesindyref2 says:

    Just adding to that, perhaps Labour noticed that he’s taking offence at the criticism, some via Wings, and is playing on what is perhaps a bit of naivety to drive a wedge between him and Wings, hence Indy support and treating the SNP fairly.

    It wouldn’t surprise me.

  49. Just had a look at The Herald site. There’s next to nothing of the original article left.

    Take them to the cleaners, Stuart. It’d be nice to see that self-righteous wee nyaff Leask taken down even more of a peg or two than the Herald’s lawyers probably already have.

  50. One_Scot says:

    ‘alleges that we called the former Labour MP Anne Begg a “Nazi”’

    Apologies if I am mistaken, but is the headline ‘Called a Nazi by Wings over Scotland’, not stating a fact rather than suggesting an allegation.

  51. Sorry, my goof and slow, work interweb. Half the article hadn’t loaded.

  52. Giving Goose says:

    The situation with ex Unionist MPs is nothing but a massive attack of sour grapes.

    When I look at these ex MPs I have no sympathy for their post-Westminster predicament. They brought it on themselves.

    I just remember the grinding child poverty, the illegal wars, the poor economic management, the corruption, the bonkers Right Wing policies, the lies; all of which was eagerly accepted on their watch!

    In my opinion, not one of the ex Unionist MPs voted out at the General Election, was a actually a nice person; their support for, frankly, anti-social, illegal and morally corrupt institutions and policies is to be held in contempt.

  53. Swami Backverandah says:

    Stay tuned for a flurry of ‘respected journalists’ issuing condemnation of this disgraceful journalism, bringing their ever-so-cherished high journalistic standards into disrepute.

  54. One_Scot says:

    Seriously, I cannot imagine how bad things would be if we did not have the likes of Wings over Scotland and others holding the corrupt unionist media to account.

  55. Rab Dickson says:


    Your last line?
    Me too.

  56. Sinky says:

    I hope Rev Stu extracts enough in damages to fund a Wee Blue Book of Scotland’s finances this Spring.

    The Herald’s front page hatchet job on Mr Boswell this morning confirmed my decision taken a couple of months ago to stop buying the Herald was entirely justified.

    A vexatious report to the Standards Commissioner on a minor technical breach of the rules does not warrant front page news coverage.

    I now buy The National which leads with National Front community councillor

  57. ArtyHetty says:

    Ohhh, looks like they are really getting rattled now. Attempting to discredit WoS on their front page, wow. Might have guessed they would try this one, because WoS is their main enemy due to exposing their lies and revealing facts and truths of their Britnat establishment.

    They can only hide the truth from some, but not the many.

    Put nothing past them with their unscrupulous, and extremely underhand tactics. And it’s only the 5th of January, amazing.

  58. Petra says:

    As every day goes by Unionist Media vituperations against the SNP and supporters of Scottish Independence have become more and more injudicious. Tactics such as exaggeration, cherry picking, omissions, and spin in general, have now been exchanged for out and out lying …. And it looks as though they have gone too far, and with the wrong person, this time.

    You’ll get all the support you need Stu to follow this up with legal action against the Herald and Ms Begg too if there’s evidence to the effect that she’s been involved in defaming your character (and this site).

    I understand that IPSO is often deemed to be worse than useless but it wouldn’t do any harm to contact them too.


    I watched the Daily Politics Show earlier today being presented by Jo Coburn. Tommy Sheppard was on the programme and he did us all proud as usual. However what struck me once again was the venom that absolutely oozed from J Coburn (worsened no doubt because she couldn’t get one over him) …. body language, facial expression and type of questioning. The BBC should take a close look at such presenters / programmes, scrutinise their behaviour, and make radical changes before their £300m plus in license fees diminish any further.

  59. schrodingers cat says:

    wos links to NF site with photo of Anne Begg

    not annes fault
    not annes advisors fault
    not the nf’s fault

    it wos wos wot dun it?


  60. montfleury says:

    Extraordinary. I know newspapers can’t afford journalists any more, but I thought they at least had lawyers.

  61. Hugh Barclay says:

    If there is a way of bringing that rancid Unionist scumbag waste of space down then count me in, I’ll chip in a few quid.

    I’ll borrow that saying, Leask is a Timex watch in a digital age, well past his sell by date.

  62. HandandShrimp says:

    Mr Leask has made an arse of this (and the Herald) and no mistake.

    His article – he gets the laughs (as was once said on Monty Python).

    I have no view on Begg. I think I said at the time that she got photo-bombed by the extreme end of the Unionist cause and she was not adept enough at dealing with it.

  63. Bill Cruickshank says:

    If you need to start a crowd fund to fight this I for one will chip in. The Herald cannot be allowed to get away with this. The woman campaigned at the same venue with Nazis. If you fly with the crows you get shot with the crows!

  64. Karmanaut says:

    The gutter press print lies to smear opponents. It’s pathetic, but sadly not unexpected. Hope you get a good settlement.

    Anyway, we still have another couple of months of fabricated and distorted “NHS crisis” stories to get through, lumped with the usual “SNP accused of something Bad by opponent (although there’s no any actual evidence)”, leading up to the Great British Yoon Frenzy of lies and smears in time for May.

    It’s funny to watch the Unionist press self-combust as they get more and more desperate. Their tactic seems to be: “Nobody’s listening, make up more pish.”

  65. ScottishPsyche says:

    A rather bizarre defence of his piece has Leask comparing Nicola Sturgeon being snapped beside the Scottish Resistance lot.

    If he is saying that you cannot infer anything from a photograph does that mean for ever more the photos they put up to illustrate their stories are to be disregarded?

    For some time now there has been disquiet about the accompanying photos for MSM articles.

    I do not for a minute believe they are unaware of the power of a picture.

    Basically he is saying they decide whether a picture is newsworthy or not. His sneering disregard for Wings is enlightening. He is trying to discredit the source rather than the articles because they truly see it as competition.

    Interestingly, Anne Begg has been complaining about the difficulties she faces as a disabled person now that she does not have her helpers. Wasn’t her entire career built around being a champion of disabled rights? Is she only now finding out what it is like for most disabled people?

  66. Grouse Beater says:

    On the same day as wheelchair-bound Begg is involved in false accusation, another disabled woman is refused DWP reinstatement and is forced to use food banks.

    That’s world Begg voted No to live in.

  67. This is just another example of a great many trying to discredit WoS. It seems to me that for a long time now many prominent individuals have at one time tried to stir things up with WoS, a Cameron tactic, lots of little suggestions which stick in the mind, Kezia being a prime example. Politics is entering an interesting phase at the moment and for this and next year, and we must maintain 100 percent integrity and challenge everyone that would try to put a stain on us and we must do so equally in the public domain.

  68. Dan Huil says:

    Go after the lying BritNat media scum, Rev. As you already know we’ll back you all the way.

  69. marydoll says:

    and make that radio too

    Boyd Tunnock just been on Radio 2 getting free advertising for his tea cakes, which he said NEVER had a lion on the wrapper. Apparently twitter is angry with all those nasty cybernats having a go at it becoming British. Old story……the old guy is a marketing genius!

  70. Steven Roy says:

    Aside from the whole Nazi thing the point that caught my attention was the “Scottish” National Front. How can a party be called the National Front then sub-divide that into local national fronts. Scottish Lab/Con/LibDem make no sense but at least it is not a ridiculous idea that such a party could exist. How can a party whose whole being is about being UK against the world have a branch office called the Scottish National Front?

    Maybe since I live in Devon I should call myself English Scottish National Party but that would make no sense either.

  71. broonpot says:

    Politics is considered a dangerous place

    but the world of journalism is evil.

    What you outline is –

    arrogant, mendacious, panic-stricken and stupid.

    Take them to the cleaners financially.

    The nails in their coffin are beginning to hide the wood. It will eventually hit the bottom of the grave with a clang rather than a thud.

  72. gordoz says:

    This has been along time coming. This puerile nonsense has got Labour branding all over it.

    I think this is whats called a self inflicted injury (or perhaps Mr Leask is culpable in convincing Dame Begg to ‘rake shite over old coals’ causing a new and worse smell than ever, over this issue.

    It beggars belief that the good / educated Dame did not know David MacDonald or of his involvement with the NF (Both are ‘sort of’ politicos from Aberdeen). If she didn’t then shes a bit of a clown as such knowledge was supposed to be part of her former job. For her to deny such knowledge is very dodgy in the extreme sense.

    She (but probably Mr Leask more so), was trying to be too smart in conflating something that was primarily an error of judgement by Dame Begg in the first place. Should have let sleeping dogs etc. To allow such a headline LIE to be printed was very naive.

    Would a retraction from Dame Begg suffice ??

    All the best with your action anyway Mr Campbell.

  73. Hamish100 says:

    You would think Leask reads his own articles in the Herald and would clarify the issue. Maybe he is meeting his legal team?
    He is a Senior Reporter with the Herald. Heaven help us.
    Is some of Beggs responses similar to her comments with the wee photo of her becoming a Dame of the British Empire? Do we have a composite of several articles by Leask? Maybe he would wish to comment in order to clear the stench.

  74. ScottieDog says:

    Had the shoe been on the other foot and it had been an SNP MP spotted with an ‘undersirable’ it would have been front page news for days and happily tweeted by SLAB.

  75. Swami Backverandah says:

    Simon Johnson of the Telegraph must be wondering how he got outscooped on this one, Rev.

  76. galamcennalath says:

    montfleury says:

    “Extraordinary. I know newspapers can’t afford journalists any more, but I thought they at least had lawyers.”

    Thoughts along those lines occured to me. Poor, badly researched, plagaristic output probably needs legal oversight more than quality decent stuff would!

    Who comes cheapest? Lawyers or Journalists!?

  77. Brian Mcgraw says:

    Herald is getting worse. With Ian Bell sadly gone think I’ll be cancelling my digital sub.

  78. Karen says:

    The bit that gets me is “Ann Begg is disabled BUT (my emphasis) has done a fantastic job for her constituents in Aberdeen” as if disabled people are unlikely to do as good a job as non-disabled people!!

  79. Jack Murphy says:

    The Herald is described in Wikipedia:
    “Type Daily newspaper
    Format Broadsheet
    Owner(s) Newsquest
    Publisher Herald & Times Group
    Editor Magnus Llewellin
    Founded 1783
    Political alignment Pro-Union, Centre-left”

  80. smithie says:

    Ach fuck this Stu, sick and tired of these bastards printing crap. Many thanks for what you do and have to put up with, but this will continue to May and further on.
    HIT them now if you can, we have your back mate, crowdfunding no problem.
    Scotland will be free.

  81. chossy says:

    Could you not have just sent them an email that simply says “No I didnae’

    I’m joking of course, keep up the good work, treat yourself to some sweeties you deserve it go on.

  82. Bob Mack says:

    The line between insinuation and defamation is notoriously thin, but is usually kept on the side of caution.This time they have overstepped the mark.

    The only defence they could have is if they claimed a contributor had made this accusation whilst posting on the site, but it is not specified, as it should have been.

    Bad error which undoubtedly leaves them open to defamation. The fact they pulled the article so quickly merely confirms their culpability.

  83. Jim says:

    I would like to ask what the fuck has SEO got to do with the headline and why is that muppet implying that it has.

    The headline is libelous towards the owners of W.O.S and willfully used to drip some poison into the minds of the Herald’s ever dwindling readership and garner sympathy for Begg

    “I spent my life avoiding anybody from the National Front. So how would I know who this person was? Clearly I did not.”
    You would have to know who they were to avoid them would you not?
    But after 18 years of elected politics she is suddenly without the support that an MP gets. For someone who relies on a wheelchair, that is not easy.

    She said: “I have a fairly major disability. It has come as a shock to me just how disabled I am now that I am having to be more independent.

    “I have always had staff that I had come to rely on to get my places and get me around. They are not there any more.

    “I don’t have the support I used to have.”
    This would be the sympathy seeking bit; are we to grieve that you were not re-elected and lost the privileges that made you almost forget how disabled you are.

    Those durty fucking Eshenpee basturts took away your security blanket, eh Anne?

  84. I don’t believe the herald could have any defence in claiming it was a contributor who made the accusation.

    It is the editor who decides on the articles that appear in his paper and if he has permitted an unfounded accusation to be published in that newspaper then he is responsible

  85. Proud Cybernat says:

    In aboot them, Rev.

    Right behind you. That rag is so blinded by its own predjudices that it couldn’t tell a fact from a fart.

  86. Petra says:

    @ gordoz says at 2:28 pm …. ”It beggars belief that the good / educated Dame did not know David MacDonald or of his involvement with the NF (Both are ‘sort of’ politicos from Aberdeen). If she didn’t then shes a bit of a clown as such knowledge was supposed to be part of her former job. For her to deny such knowledge is very dodgy in the extreme sense.”

    It IS dodgy for her Gordoz because if she finds herself in Court any number of witnesses can be called to repudiate her claim.

    @ Joseph Robinson says at 2:13 pm ….. ”Politics is entering an interesting phase at the moment and for this and next year, and we must maintain 100 percent integrity and challenge everyone that would try to put a stain on us and we must do so equally in the public domain.”

    Spot on Joseph. WoS is clearly annoying some (a journalistic threat to them?) and we’ll be under constant scrutiny. We’ll all have to ensure that we don’t let this site down on here or on Twitter. Be role models for the Independence cause and give them no ammunition.

  87. MJS Dundee says:

    Hard to see how they’ll squirm their way out of this one.

    Given we’ve got plenty offering crowdfund support, I’d be minded to take this one all the way and NOT settle out of court. True, the legal profession will make off with their usual stone of flesh, but I struggle to see not winning costs in the end.

    There’s a good amount of publicity to be focussed here on the mendacious ways of both MSM and SLab – timing may be good for May. Raises WoS profile further. And may in the end generate a nice little nest-egg (thanks MSM/SLab) with which to support all sorts of useful things.

    I daresay Begg/SLab and Leaske will try to blame each other whilst trying to squirm out of – that alone would be well worth getting in an extra large bag of popcorn for.

  88. Nation Libre says:

    I’m absolutely sick of some of the MSM smears and accusations against independence supporters. Is there an option, following a qualifying smear from an individual or company, to take out a class action or group litigation or whatever it’s called in Scotland?

    O/T I thought Tommy Sheppard handled this afternoon’s Daily Politics show very well from rabid attacks by a very hostile Jo Coburn. Isn’t she clever enough to realise how totally biased that appeared. Keep it coming

  89. Lesley-Anne says:

    I may be wrong here but if there is FULL front page ( same size to orginal story ) in tomorrow’s Herald then I think I feel the early onsought of legal proceedings approaching. 😀

  90. Jim says:

    Peter McCulloch says:
    5 January, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    I don’t believe the herald could have any defence in claiming it was a contributor who made the accusation.

    It is the editor who decides on the articles that appear in his paper and if he has permitted an unfounded accusation to be published in that newspaper then he is responsible
    They didn’t say it was a contributer as far as I know Leask is still credited as the author.

    Leask tried to imply that because the site used SEO then that was to blame for the libelous headline.

    As I understand it, SEO uses trigger words or phrases on the website to try and increase it’s chances of getting on the first page of google results without having to pay google for the privilidge.

    There are no mitigating factors; the headline was libelous and there is no way they would win a court case using an excuse like that.

  91. Richardinho says:

    Go get ’em Stu!

  92. Jim says:

    The thing is, can you put a price on propaganda?

    They may be taken to court and if they were they would definitely lose, perhaps print a small retraction and maybe some pay out some compensation but some of the shit will still stick and they know it.

  93. Kennedy says:

    If you lie with dogs you may get flees.

    If you fly with the crows you get shot with the crows.

    Poor Anne voted for austerity. Cutting benefits for the disabled and sanctioning folk with mental health issues unable to work. Sanctions have been linked with suicides.

    Dame Anne Begg thinks pain, suffering and death is just politics. Yes Nazi politics.

    Dame Anne Begg best mates with David MacDonald. She may get on the NF list if she doesn’t make the SLab list for may.

    Not a fan of Dame Anne Begg. Can you tell.

    David MacDonald needs watching.

  94. Smallaxe says:

    Josef Goebbels would be proud of them, it’s a pity we cant!

  95. Kenny says:

    Stu, I came on here to comment that it is high time a court case was launched. I see you have started action against this propaganda sheet (it is not a “news” paper).

    I think it is high time decisive legal action was taken against the “one-media state”. The SNP will not do this when they are attacked and, in a way, I understand them and believe they are right as a political party (while understanding the frustration of many in the Yes Movement).

    But the Yes Movement is not the SNP and is a very broad movement. The heavy work in 2014 was done by the Radical Independence movement and Wings is chipping away at the anti-Scotland media.

    I think such constant articles are the reason why maybe around 5-8% of Scotland have not switched to YES. There are many people not involved in politics, too knackered to care, and such headlines (they do not read any further) are created to make them think: “Oh, what’s the point, they’re all the same!”

    But Wings with Stu at the helm and the readers on here who respond so well to any fundraising campaign are a very potent force, who together can take on and defeat the press.

    Last year it was the brazen liar Carmichael. This year, let us go after the “anti-Scotland” press who print lies with one aim in mind — to stop Scots governing themselves.

    I wish you much positive energy, Stu, because I think it is time that the Yes Movement got organised and took on the lying papers — it could have very important implications for the push beyond 50% of the country behind independence.

  96. Marie Clark says:

    My, my. The corpmedia really hate WOS, big time. For The Herald to go with that headline, and the article below, should beggar belief. But it doesn’t. It’s just what we have come to expect.They sure have overstepped the mark this time.

    Well, I think the Herald is lucky that the Rev decided to speak to his solicitors, could have been the Hammers otherwise eh.

    Go on Rev Stu, as others have said, we’ve got your back. Say the word if and when the bawbees are needed.

  97. yesindyref2 says:

    From the contect I’m thinking that SEO isn’t Search Engine Optimisation, but Sub-Editor – Orifice or something like that? Who knows.

  98. Dr Jim says:

    All this fuss over a bit of banter
    These Jockstrap Nats up there in Jockistan just can’t take a joke
    Trust Extremists to get all in a knot about nothing when they know it’s the truth anyway

    Sigh, that’s the trouble with Scotland now they’ve changed, and not for the better in their one party wee irrelevant state

    It’s only good “Journalistic” standards that are holding North Britain together

  99. Flower of Scotland says:

    The gutter press are only going after you because they are losing their influence.

    You have opened many people,s eyes to the real politics in Scotland by the Better Together mob, who are still in full flow even today.

    To say the they are incensed by Wings education of people in Scotland, shows just how vile these newspapers are.

    Expect more of this! And go get them!

  100. ScotsCanuck says:

    I sincerely hope you (literally) sue the shirts aff their backs … this has been a long time coming.
    It appears David Leask is not only “the architect of his own doom” but also that of the Herald.

    The delicious sight of seeing him hoisted by his own Petard will most certainly make my day !!! …… go get ’em Rev.

  101. Jim says:

    Your ‘thought police’, drip-fed propaganda for today is:

    The Eshenpee basturts in cahoots wi that Wings over Scotland basturt, ‘Stuart Campbell’ ruined the career of a poor disabled wumman.

    The basturts took away that poor wummins MP priviliges and now she can feel how disabled she really is when as an MP she couldn’t.

    You gotta link to the side which takes you to that Begg story:

    “Ex-MP Anne Begg: horrible accusation that I backed Nazis will not go away”

    Who the fuck said you backed Nazis?

  102. Big Jock says:

    When your enemies enemy is your enemy. Your enemy becomes your bedfellow.

    Unionists don’t do scruples only propaganda.

  103. Mike says:

    I think it is time to don my badge of justice, consume a swizzle of accountability and suggest a fundraiser for taking these barstewards to court.

    Like many others I cancelled my herald subscription they day they abandoned their readers and came out for a no vote.

    They said they would pursue the vow relentlessly, they have done hee haw and Gardham et al should be ashamed.

    I think in referendum 2 the Herald will be just as much an enemy as the rest of the Scottish media.

  104. jcd says:

    “It will be hearing from our solicitors”

    Go get em tiger

  105. Iain More says:

    Sue the arses off them.

    I was so disgusted by the Herald front page that I didn’t buy a National today.

  106. Skooshcase says:

    Go after these dirty, lying fuckers, Stu. If possible, take them to the cleaners.

    Not just those who follow wings, but a huge number of social media users will back you on this. If it takes a crowdfunding effort then so be it. The money will be raised quickly and with gratitude.

    Sick of these bastards and their lying and smearing and putting Scotland down at every opportunity. Fucking scum.

  107. Renka says:

    I wonder how much the Herald paid her for that. She’ll need the money now she’s finding that Job Seekers Allowance doesn’t go far.

    Westminster/MSM policy -you cannot beat the rising tide of the SNP so do your damdest to smear and discredit them.

  108. Douglas Macdonald says:

    I have just looked up the precise meanings of slander and libel in respect to Scots Law. Since the Herald wrote the story, they would be guilty of libel, whereas if Anne Begg had actually stated these sentiments to the reporter (i.e. another person), then she would be guilty of slander. In both cases, either a public apology would have to be made by each party in turn. If either (or both) party(parties) refused, then the victim, in this case, the Rev. Stewart, could, and should,seek redress from a Sheriff Court.

  109. carjamtic says:

    And so it begins….

    WoS protecting Scotland against the Wolves of Westmonster and their attack dogs in MSM/EBC

    We are not afraid.

  110. One_Scot says:

    I am no media communications expert, but surely the unionist media using the internet for their lies and bias is only making more and more people realise how politically corrupt and anti Scottish they really are.

  111. Inkall says:

    I may have missed it but reading The National’s article about MacDonald being elected to an Aberdeen Community Council I don’t think the following points were made.

    It does state that Mr MacDonald was elected to the Garthdee Community Council with just 18 first place votes.

    What I didn’t see mentioned was that 4 votes would have been enough to guarantee election, 3 and I presume it would have been based on number of times chosen as a secondary choice?

    That isn’t even the worrying thing though. Of the THIRTY Community Council areas in Aberdeen only THREE even had enough applications to trigger a poll in the first place.

    I’ve not counted the exact numbers but it is quite possible that had MacDonald happened to put himself forward for one of the 27 other community councils, or less people had thrown their names in for Garthdee, he would have walked straight in.

    Now however everything will rest on the shoulders of the other members of the Community Council to keep him well in check.

  112. Jamie Arriere says:

    Her biggest mistake is not that she ‘backed Nazis’ – she didn’t. The fact she claims she doesn’t know who they are is far more concerning as regards competence or honesty.

    Labour have openly admitted that campaigning alongside the Tories has done for them in Scotland. They shouldn’t be so coy about extending that to the NF & even UKIP for that matter

    It wasn’t a Wings camera or even an SNP camera. She got caught. Deal with it.

  113. itsagoinwrang says:

    New Year resolution was to review my Herald sub. Easy decision to ditch it after a glance across their ‘headline’ stories today.

  114. Big Jock says:

    Douglas I sense a crowdfunder coming up to take The Herald to court!

    Off topic if anyone knows anyone at Lees Of Scotland. A clever bit of business would be to have the slogan ” A great Scottish Teacake”. It would go down well as Tunnocks now have ” A great British Teacake”.

    Tunnocks don’t want the English to know they are Scottish! How stupid are they. Have they not heard of Scotch Whisky. People buy it because it is Scottish. It’s iconic.

  115. Jim Mitchell says:

    Deceptive lot the unionist press, just when you think they can’t sink any lower, they do!

  116. Robert Roddick says:

    I have just posted this piece to facebook urging folks to read the whole article and to be thankful for Wings over Scotland. Strangely it did not appear!
    I did also say that I could remember when The Herald was a newspaper and that many of the journalists of that time must be, if a can use the expression ”birlin in their graves.

  117. Tam Jardine says:

    It smacks of jealousy on Leask’s part. He canny lace Stuart’s boots as a journalist. He has no reach now since the Herald has been completely discredited.

    It is nothing but a unionist rag now- like the Telegraph I wouldn’t pick it up at the airport if it was free. Papers like the Herald are living in the past. People are not willing to just swill down their rubbish anymore.

  118. Jimbo says:

    Called Nazi after Wings over Scotland suggested she campaigned with National Front: Anne Begg MP on social media bullying

    I note the Herald’s latest headline refers to her as an MP, even though she is not. Even with the smallest of things they cannot be honest.

    I bought that paper daily for well over twenty years. I stopped buying it after all their lies and disinformation in the run up to the 2007 Holyrood elections when they began to see the SNP as being in with a real chance of being the elected Scottish government. I haven’t bought a Unionist leaning paper since then. I refuse to pay the feckers to lie to me.

  119. thomaspotter2014 says:

    Is the enemy of my enemy my friend?

    Better Together thought that during the Independence campaign and look where it got them.


    ‘Scottish Lib/Dems-destroyed.

    ‘Scottish’ Conservatives-worst vote in a century.

    David Leask and Anne Begg along with the Herald have screwed up bigtime on this one and I hope the Rev.takes them all the way.

    But I also got a feeling this won’t be the last time we see this slander type garbage.

  120. Skooshcase says:

    “@LeaskyHT 42 minutes ago

    @Stoviesplz The headline hasn’t changed. We had a clumsy SEO header for about 15mins. It wasn’t the “original”.”

    Zat right, aye? So it’s not you, Leask, trying to cover your spotty wee arse, then, no? Not at all, eh… Just go and do one, ya lying toerag. (Now go on and put that up on Twitter: ‘An evil cybernat said awful, disgraceful and shocking things about me on WOS, cybernat hive-mind central controlled by King Cybernat himself, Stu Campbell.’ It’s what you ‘misunderstood’ Unionist journalists [sic] do after all, is it not?)

  121. schrodingers cat says:

    the source code on the herald page still has the original headline

    this is where the search engines find their meta tags

  122. Iain More says:

    God knows what the Brit Nats will be like tomorrow as Cameron appears weak on the EU Rebels in his own Cabinet and Corbyn wont sack that rabid right winger Benn in his even less than a Shadow Cabinet.

  123. Skooshcase says:

    “Ex-MP Anne Begg: horrible accusation that I backed Nazis will not go away”

    Zat right, aye? How about you say who actually made that “accusation”? For clarity, and all that. Then that person, or organisation, or whatever can rightfully be chastised by all and sundry. So, then. Go ahead. What are you waiting for?

  124. Lesley-Anne says:

    I can only assume that the Herald was totally unaware of the *ahem* little run-in the Scotsman had with Stu a year or so back then. 😀

    May I suggest that the Herald get on the phones in double quick time and speak to the Scotsman to enquire how their wee legal tete a tete with Stu worked out? 😀

    I’m almost tempted to suggest we make this a double law suit here. One law suit against the Herald for printing the shite and a second lawsuit against Leask for writing the shite!

  125. Big Jock says:

    Iain there is a rumour going around that the EU referendum could be this autumn instead of 2017. Insiders are saying the English will definately vote to leave, according to internal polling.

  126. Onwards says:

    StoviesPlz says:
    5 January, 2016 at 12:48 pm
    It was just a clumsy headline apparently

    @Stoviesplz The headline hasn’t changed. We had a clumsy SEO header for about 15mins. It wasn’t the “original”.”

    What does that even mean?
    Google didn’t write the headline for them.
    Were they trying to get the word NAZI associated with WINGS OVER SCOTLAND on a google search ?

    The simple explanation is that they screwed up and pulled the headline after complaints when they realized it was libellous.

    It’s a nasty article.
    The whole point is for people to just glance at the headline and get the impression that WOS is bullying a woman in a wheelchair.

    Fact is that many figures within Labour used the referendum to campaign with the Tories and any other extremists towards a common goal of keeping Scotland under London rule. A blind eye was turned. Same as how some in Labour pandered to the orange order, and supported them marching on the streets for a no vote.

    “..But the lowest common denominator is we appreciate we’re better off in the Union. One Labour MP told me ‘Sammy, I’ve never been so glad to see the (Orange) Lodge on the street’.”

    BTW, it’s ironic that Wings is always referred to as being edited by ‘Bath based Stuart Campbell’. Why is that relevant? Are independence supporters supposed to be anti-English or something?

  127. Sassenach says:

    I’m no lawyer, but I cannot see a downside to pursuing the rag (other than a very slight risk of losing a bit of money in legal fees, which crowdfunding would always cover!).

    To fire a warning shot across the BUM’s bows so early in the New Year campaign would probably make some editors take a lot more care in what they print, Go For It, Stuart!!

  128. gus1940 says:

    Wouldn’t it be a beautiful piece of delicious irony if Rev Stu sued The Herald, took them to the cleaners for a fortune and used the proceeds to make an ofer to JP for The Scotsman which they couldn’t refuse and turned it into a newspaper.

    It’s nice to dream.

  129. heedtracker says:

    We have ways of making you vote SLabour.

    We’ll pay you three grand each if you just vote SLab in May all over the web now. BBC vote SLab Scotland propaganda says its SLabour help for people, awe.

    Anne Begg says she didnae ken they were Bettertogether fascists too

  130. gordoz says:

    Jeez somehow this List is seen as things that would be a great loss to most Scots ???

    Think the writer is confused, or only covering ProudScotBut types

    Think these have been seen as items of real cultural value or esteemed talent; must be me but I cant see it. Not advocating any kind of boycott but I would not miss the vast majority of things covered.

    Now – If we were talkin’ aboot; Home made soup, Rolls n slice,
    Belhaven Black, Still Game, Brian Cox (actor), James Cosmo,
    WoS, Alan Bissett, Robin McAlpine, etc etc ?

  131. I’m afraid it’s just one more example of the “establishment” proving that it can do and say what it likes, the way it has been brainwashing the people of Scotland for hundreds of years.
    I wish Stuart well in his recourse to law, but for the next four months prepare for the lies and abuse to continue unabated, for make no mistake we are challenging their, the establishment’s, very existence, They will use every means, and they are considerable, at their disposal to derail our campaign, so be prepared.
    The good news is that on the doorsteps in the real world, less and less “real people”believe their guff, so hopefully we wil give them another black eye in May.

  132. Bill Hume says:

    Sue, Stu.

  133. Neil Cook says:

    If Ex Slab Mps could write their achievements on the back of a postage stamp, as well as the so called Journalists there would be enough room to collate the iqs of all and write this also. Lived in Aberdeen for over 30 years and I don’t know of anything the Dame achieved!! Her constituency is the same shithole it was when I moved here !! Didn’t even to get the kettle to boil today without the good old Beeb with Snp bad story !! Ffs lets us have a coffee in the morning but I always have my wee Jackie video from Hogmanay to laugh at !!

  134. Iain Harvey says:

    Gotta love that the original “headline” is still in the html code.

  135. blairtawheelie says:

    More strength to your arm, Rev. Stu. I never would have believed the Herald would sink this low. I read all the articles on this site and many of the comments, but rarely comment. In this case, please take the paper formerly known as, “The Glasgow Herald” all the way. I know that there are many just like me,right behind you.

    And Happy 2016, all Posters and Lurkers!

  136. rabthecab says:

    Sue the arses off them Stu, it’s no less than they deserve for publishing malicious falsehoods as “news”.

  137. Christine says:

    New year, happy new smear. Sue ’em rev.

  138. Valerie says:

    Leask’s audacity is breathtaking. I started reading, and had to stop, to allow my blood pressure to reduce.

    Every reader and contributor should feel anger but not as angry as Rev. To use his picture, is disgusting and a further barb, because the slow witted, may well believe this baseless tripe, and are being invited to identify the Rev with it.

    I’m very pleased that the Rev. is consulting solicitors, because this crap should not be suffered.

    It’s way over any kind of line.

  139. Skooshcase says:

    With this attempted smear it is so obvious that WOS and Stu Campbell has really got to the Herald and is its chief irritant.

    Magnus Gardham has had his arse handed to him so many times on this site that he might as well just ask Stu to look after it and let it go for a shite now and again as he has it in his possession most of the time!

    When the Herald has to resort to this behaviour you know that they have already lost the battle for Scotland’s soul – and they know it too.

    Like some cornered near-dead ogre, the Herald and the rest of the Scottish Unionist media will lash out and attempt to do some damage before their demise. Yes, some blows might land, but ultimately it will be futile. Death will be upon them sooner rather than later.

    The Scottish Unionst media is dead – they just haven’t realised it yet.

  140. Scott says:

    Scottish Labour’s parliamentary business manager James Kelly MSP

    Did not take Kelly long to get in on the act.

    Nicola Sturgeon urged to launch full investigation into conduct of SNP MP Phil Boswell

  141. heedtracker says:

    Ofcourse UKOK hackdom thinks it can lie about and smear anyone at all that wont vote how they re told but its even weirder online.

    So from hard core unionsts tweedle Scott and tweedle Dunc

    Duncan Hothersall Retweeted
    Scott Arthur ?@DrScottThinks 4h4 hours ago Edinburgh, Scotland
    Today we found that:
    1. @kdugdalemsp will help working class Scots buy their 1st home.
    2. One SNP MP owns 7 houses.

    Is it from Kezia’s own savings or somewhere else?

    Neither hard core UKOK unionists have said yet

  142. Ian Mackay says:

    Surely it’s not asking too much for journalists like Leask to check their sources before they print guff? Was it approved on Leask’s nod and wink?

    Or is the clamour for a headline to attack Wings Over Scotland just too irresistible to do the journalistic basics like making sure the story had some validity before it is run?

    Maybe The Herald thinks that any publicity is good publicity and printing smears may drive up readership?

    The Herald now finds itself is the story as it’s lazy journalism is found wanting.

    I imagine Senior figures in The Herald are now livid at Leask bringing the paper into such disrepute! The thought of a stonewall case for Rev. Stu must be making their lawyers cold sweat! They’ll be trying to estimate a settlement figure if they have any sense and get the story edited or retracted ASAP.

    I wouldn’t want to be Leask right now, trying to defend this junk to his editors! Mind you, maybe he’s angling for a job in the Daily Mail. On this evidence, his fly-by-night journalism is right up their street.

  143. Luigi says:

    And so it begins. Your solicitor may be quite busy between now and May, Rev. WoS is clearly a recognised threat to the union and they are coming for you. They are quite prepared to pay the price. Whatever it takes.

  144. Proud Cybernat says:

    The Establishment protect their own, especially their lapdog, lickspittle compliant corpmedia. Of course, we can expect The Herald’s defense lawyers to claim that what they published was a ‘political lie’ and insist that if the Unionist, ‘Carmichael the Liar’ can get away with it, then so should they.

    A nest of scheming, lying unionist vipers and sabernats one and all. They picked the wrong fight this time.

    Get ’em Stu. Will crowd-fund this till my nose bleeds and then some.

  145. Luigi says:

    Ian Mackay says:
    5 January, 2016 at 4:53 pm

    Was it approved on Leask’s nod and wink?

    Of course it was. That’s how editors, those shady characters operate. Remember the Daily Record “vow” that wasn’t a vow?

  146. Luigi says:

    Scott says:
    5 January, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    Scottish Labour’s parliamentary business manager James Kelly MSP

    Did not take Kelly long to get in on the act.

    Nicola Sturgeon urged to launch full investigation into conduct of SNP MP Phil Boswell

    Sigh. Guess what Dippety’s question will be at FMQT ths week. It’s either that, or “Will the FM now condemn the WoS blogger Stuart Campbell for his atrocious attacks on the saintly Ann Begg?. 🙂

    The red tories are nothing if not consistent. So predictable.

  147. Ruby says:

    They are getting really desperate!

    I hope Stu finds this story as funny as I do.

    It’s highly entertaining watching the antics of the Unionist politicians and the MSM.

    Did something happen to The Herald just after the referendum or perhaps is was after the GE? New management? New owner?

    They seem to suddenly become really bad and their forum was invaded by all The Scotsman’s UniTrolls.

  148. Geoff Huijer says:

    So basically the Herald’s article is a pack of lies.

    Perhaps if they are so worried about people being called Nazis they should have run an article about the Scotland on Sunday ‘newspaper’ when it effectively called the whole nation of Scotland Nazis when it printed a picture of the Saltire mocked up with a Nazi Swastika; now that really is a story!

    I will never forgive the SoS for doing that & still refuse to click on any of the stable’s websites or buy any related papers. Mind you I never buy any papers these days as they’re all just so much garbage, lies and drivel.

  149. crisiscult says:

    I’d quite like to read the clickbait stv article on tunnocks. Anyone who’s already visited the page want to archive it so I can read it without visiting the site?

  150. Macca73 says:

    See, this is what gets me, I’m a fan of the national newspaper but I hate the fact it’s associated with the drivel coming out of it’s sister paper in a “Ying and Yang” type fashion.

    It clear to readers who the larger of the papers is now and more importantly why they are buying it so why allow for these false and entirely nonsensical articles if they know it’s not what the majority of people want to read and more importantly unfounded!

    It’s ultimately damaging to both newspapers.

  151. Robert Louis says:

    Having watched the ‘scottish’ media for some time, I do think today marks a new phase of utter desperation. This appears to be a fabricated story, containing a complete and damaging lie against Rev Stu.

    Come on ‘journalists’ in Scotland, seriously, is this it? Is this the gutter level you are at now? Lying? Making up stories? Is this really why you wanted to work in a newspaper? Really???

    I do hope Rev Stu takes them to the proverbial f***** cleaners though. It would seem it is the only language they understand.

    You’d think they might learn after his lawyers went after the laughingly titled ‘Scotsman’, for similar nonsense and won.

  152. Effijy says:

    The Unionist Propaganda machine has obviously used the Herald
    to see how far they can go with fictitious lies against those that support an Independent Scotland.

    Congratulations Rev, you have been identified as their most difficult opponent in their quest to keep Scotland as an abused colony of Westminster.

    I think we might need a fundraiser to support you in your quest for justice by taking the Herald for every corrupt penny that they have?

    Would it be possible to ask Ms Begg if she made this false allegation about the Rev and WoS?

    She may wish to cut all ties with the Herald, if someone has to be sued for slander?

  153. Lochside says:

    Posted this in previous thread, meant to put it in this one:

    These rags are being subsidised by a UK black ops fund. They are coordinated in their attacks..i.e. daily and weekly sustained targeted indviduals e.g MPS or MSPs as well as the SG.

    Despite the growing move to the SNP and INDY, These ‘newspapers’ ignore the demographics and the consequential decline in income,… yet they increase their attacks like maddened dying animals.

    The unanimity of their journalists pro-union contributions points to similar pressure from the very top of the political food chain.

    The REF showed the extent that Cameron and his gang will go to pressurise and humiliate the Scots very existence…Australia, Usa , EEC etc. all lining up to insult our aspirations to be a grown up democratic State.

    Everyone of a pro-Indy mind now accepts the BBC is nothing but a mouthpiece of the British State…so why not accept the press are and have been another arm of the same monolithic Imperial oppressor?..Once you do, there’s nothing to be surprised about…other than to make you feel implacable hatred towards these organs and a desire to see them all fail.

  154. Col says:

    I would put the Scottish Corrupt Unionist Media in a similar box as the sectarian blight on this country. But maybe they are both in fact symptoms of of a Union that has never served the people of this country well at all.

  155. Hamish reid says:

    Best bit came at the end “you will be hearing from my solicitors”

  156. thomaspotter2014 says:

    One of Rev’s previous articles was called WAR DECLARED AND BATTLE COME DOWN and this is surely where we are right now.

    This Herald article isn’t the same as the usual smear shite directed at the SNP/MP’S/MSP’S or Scotland in general.

    This is full on personal creepy and sinister character assassination attempt and signifies that even for the Establishment shit shovellors the glove’s are off.

    Their pissing their pants fright levels must be going through the roof now that the attack propaganda is becoming a fucking joke and YES posse are completely ignoring all the drivel they pump out.

    And being joined by soft no’s and even neutral folk who can see where they really are coming from and are sickened by it.

    What to do? Let’s go for a personal attack on Rev.Stu?

    Oh how that’s gonna come back and bite them on the arse.

    Now we’re getting down to the nitty gritty.

    Time to look out the full metal jacket my friends.

    It’s gonna get nastier and dirtier.

    But at least we know that now.

  157. Skooshcase says:

    Remember the day/night of September 19, 2014, the first day of being ‘better together’, when actual Nazi salutes were given in George Square, Glasgow, by Unionists ‘celebrating’ Scotland remaining within the UK…?

    Excerpts from an article by G. A. Ponsonby (on Newsnet Scotland):

    “Photographs showed shocking scenes of Union Jack clad thugs performing Nazi salutes in George Square.

    Some eye-witnesses have told Newsnet Scotland of Unionists launching racist attacks on people in the surrounding area, people being threatened with being stabbed and saltires being set on fire.

    One eyewitness said: “Are you going to George Square? Don’t go we’ve just been attacked by a mob of unionists and had run away because we were threatened with being stabbed”

    “That was on the bridge near the Sherif Court. I was on my way into the city centre at that point. As I was coming up to George Square I met several other groups, all young people all teenagers, in tears in fear, running away.

    “I stopped one group to ask what was happening and they said they had been threatened with knives and they’d run away. When I got to the Square, it was pretty much at that point full of people with Union Jacks and Orange Order type people, Rangers fans, whatever.”

    And there was the false reporting from BBC Scotland:

    “An online article published on the BBC’s Scottish website contained the headline ‘Scottish referendum: Police separate rival groups in Glasgow’ alongside an image that appeared to show police officers separating both rival camps.

    According to the BBC police were, ” investigating trouble between rival Unionists and independence supporters in Glasgow city centre”.”

    Totally, utterly and disgustingly shameful.

    Lest we forget.

  158. jim.watson says:

    Come on everyone, to the tune of “oh ye canny shove yer Granny”…

    ” Ye can shove yer rancid paper up yer erse
    Ye can shove yer rancid paper up yer erse
    Ye can shove yer rancid paper, shove yer rancid paper,
    Shove yer rancid paper up yer erse”

  159. packhorse pete says:

    Luigi @
    WoS is clearly a recognised threat to the union and they are coming for you

    No, WoS is coming for THEM.

  160. Papadox says:

    @lochside says 5:20pm

    Spot on, BULLs eye. 100% let us hold our nerve and keep moving forward, lets rid our wee country of these poisonous despicable slugs they are a stain on humanity.

  161. Dr Ew says:

    Since they printed your picture alongside Ms Begg’s wild assertions, you’d have thought a reputable journalist would have at least contacted you for a response prior to pubishing.

  162. ronnie anderson says:

    Bob Sinclair 1.18 tain the words oota ma mooth but he left ma teeth,am up fur a big bite of the Herald,mibbee’s get a deal whereby they print the next edition of the Wee Blue Book, noo whits the population of that wee poor stupid country thats no tae be mentioned. Oh aye Scotland & the Wings Over It.

    Mair than the Scotsman Rev Sue the Arse aff them .We’re waiting on the sound of the Bell.

  163. One_Scot says:

    Jings, you’d think there was an election coming up or something.

  164. Colin says:

    David Leask says on Twitter “one of our digital staff clumsily put in on for 15 mins”…..Was your story David, as a good journalist, do you not check what goes out in your name?

  165. Janet says:

    Aye, the UKOK media absolutely hate WoS!!!

    This could be just the start! WoS can turn out well-researched articles within hours, and is essential reading for Indy activists everywhere. I fear that they could try something more direct…it’s happened before when the site got targeted by the “KGB” or whoever, but I’m sure our Stuart has all angles covered!

  166. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi crisiscult.

    Here you are:-

  167. ALANM says:

    What intrigues me is why she felt it necessary to offer an explanation just for looking so happy and relaxed in that photograph and why the Herald decided her explanation was important enough to be included in the article.

    If she really believed when the picture was taken that he was a Labour Party member or supporter then no explanation would’ve been required. And of course the Herald reporter wouldn’t have asked for one. On the other hand…

  168. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    O/T – The reporter on STV North said, just now, re the Invercauld Bridge at Braemar,

    “…because the Invercauld Bridge is currently closed, and restricted to traffic and pedestrians.”

    Methinks that sentence doesn’t make sense. Sounds like ONLY traffic and pedestrians can used the closed bridge.

    Does that mean horses and other livestock are banned?

  169. Malky says:

    It’s a depressing state of affairs when the only recourse we have, when trying to establish truth and fairness from every single major ‘Scottish’ newspaper, are the courts. Lamentable.

  170. SOG says:

    I don’t normally post, but I’d like to add my opinion, that the Sunday Herald and the National need to distance themselves from this, or risk being tarred by the same brush.

    And I’ll add – Crowdfund, I’ll hapily chip in: it should instantly get their attention, and also may attract the attention and dollars of bloggers worldwide.

  171. Kennedy says:

    Here’s a thought. Could this be an own goal from the unionists.

    To dredge up this old news about poor Anne Begg the victim. People might ask “what is this all about?”

    After a short search they find the picture of Anne Begg and David MacDonald. A picture tells a thousand words = more people will think her a nazi.

    Own goal!

  172. Christian Schmidt says:

    Makes you wonder if anyone in the Herald reads Iain Macwhirter’s column…

  173. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Personally, I think the headline in the first graphic, embedded by Rev Stu, presents a rock-solid case of libel…

    “Called a Nazi by Wings Over Scotland”

    How could ANY court find against the Rev? Crowdfunding would only be required if natural justice was suspended.

  174. cearc says:

    Whilst we’re talking about legal fees, please remember the Orkney 4. Currently at 203,561 of the 208,000 currently needed.

    It is really important that these people get their costs covered both for them and also as a firing gun for the media.

    If it can be seen that people can totally raise the costs of expensive court cases it may well make a few editors a little more cautious.

    Currently they only worry about defaming very rich people. Although going after oor Stuart, with his well known fund raising abilities, seems rather incautious.

  175. Skooshcase says:

    The bigger the smear the bigger their fear.

    That WOS, which is, after all, still ‘only’ a blog, can cause such fear and loathing among the ‘giants’ of the SCUM is irony of the most delicious kind.

    The people of Scotland will be the makers of their own destiny, not you SCUM. Your finished. Over. Dead. The worm has turned. GIRFUYz!

  176. davidb says:

    Oh no. I googled Scotland and news where the Daily Record has a report that we are getting snow next. I don’t know whether to get deicer or factor 50 on the way home.

  177. cyril mitchell says:

    Confirms my opinion that Herald (and Scotsman) are kept afloat by Westminster

  178. The Cabal of Miserable Hacks that infest Scotland`s newspapers have realised that the political opposition to the SNP are three of the most incompetent Parties in the history of politics.

    They have basically decided to be the official opposition to the SNP,they can`t leave it to Kezia,Ruth or Wullie as they see them as slow witted buffoons (rightly so),

    it is not Labour,Tory,Lib Dem that will be the opposition in this election it will be the MSM fronted by miserable hacks like Leask.

  179. Skip_NC says:

    Greetings from Raleigh, North Carolina. Quite a few people on this thread have expressed support for a fundraiser to cover legal fees. Personally, I hope it will not be necessary. If it is, that would indicate a protracted legal proceeding.

    On the other hand, if this is resolved in the same way as the action against the North Briton, we can reasonably expect that to be well before the election. As I recall, the resolution of that case received media attention. That, I suggest, is far more valuable than monetary damages.

  180. Andy-B says:

    No more buying the Herald for me, Leask’s big mouth has cost the Herald dearly in sales.

  181. Brian McHugh says:

    BBC Distorting Scotland…

    SNP MP accused… of something… anything.

    Labour offer the world.

    Tory’s offer the world.

    A quick chip in from the Libs and Greens.

    Now for the sport & weather.


  182. Ruby says:

    ‘The Herald/David Leask are doing a widespread survey of ex-MPs, what they are doing now and how they see Scottish politics post SNP Tsunami.’

    So far there have been five articles (I think) about/by ex-MPs. Another 51 to go.
    Perhaps after May he will include MSPs. I can’t make up my mind if David Leask is onto a winner with this widespread survey or will The Herald lose even more readers.

    So far there was been:

    Iain Davidson-Labour MPs ‘fooled’ themselves Jim Murphy hyperactivity was effective

    Tom Harris-Scottish Labour is at the edge of irrelevance

    Jo Swinson- Scotland has become so divided on independence that everyday issues are neglected.

    Alan Reid -Wheels will come off SNP juggernaut

    Anne Begg-Horrible accusation that I backed Nazis will not go away

    Think of all the treats The Herald have in store for you!

  183. JLT says:

    Yep. Christmas and New Year are now out of the road. The Scottish Elections are only 4 months away. There is no more holidays or other events between now and that event.

    So …no surprise then that the media have decided to go for it, and open up with all guns blazing! The Herald, seemingly pulling no punches by literally screaming at the top of their lungs with just about the worst thing you could call someone in the English language – a Nazi.

    The worst thing is, the paper is insinuating that (a) mindless nationalist thugs hounded a poor disabled woman because she stood with the ‘No’ campaign, and that (b) part of the ‘irony’ within this story, is that thanks to the media itself, some members of the public believe that Scottish nationalists are a corrupt form of fascists, who therefore, of all people, should be condemned for having the audacity to call someone else ‘a Nazi’.

    Today it’s Wings; tomorrow, the SNP. Literally, for these next 4 months, pray to God that no good minded and decent person who advocates Independence should do something daft in public that gets them noticed by the media. This wonderful media of ours come April will be baying for someone’s blood.

    As Stuart said, there is no way that Begg was ever called ‘a Nazi’ on this site. If he had, we would have all been over him, as would the media. Strange that this story has grown legs from apparently nowhere.

    I do believe that there may have been senseless idiots through Twitter or Facebook may have tweeted insults at Begg. But at the same time, where was the media condemnation during the Referendum, when we had Unionist supporters calling nationalist supporters ‘nazis’ again and again and again (I know it happened, because I got called it once while campaigning down at Livingston Shopping Center, by a nice chappie from the tangerine persuasion (who was then politely asked to keep ‘moving along’ as he didn’t quite see the irony of the point he had just made)).

    It would also be interesting to hear from Anne Begg herself, and thus provide the evidence that backs the Heralds story up.

    Yep! It’s started. Only 4 months to go of accusations and threats from a media that has become ever more demented with frustration over the last couple of years.

  184. Brian McHugh says:

    Cearc, if there are folk like me, then just waiting to hear what the final legal bill will be. Nae worries.

  185. Craig says:

    No doubt you will be suing for libel then Rev?

  186. Craig says:

    No doubt that you will be suing for libel then Rev?

  187. Jim says:

    @Colin says:
    5 January, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    David Leask says on Twitter “one of our digital staff clumsily put in on for 15 mins”…..Was your story David, as a good journalist, do you not check what goes out in your name?
    1. As Mr Campbell has stated the article was up for at least two hours before he archived it and however long before they pulled it after his complaint.

    2. First it was SEO, now it’s a digital staffer, must be up there with the dog ate my homework!

    3. He’s a fucking liar and should be hauled over the coals for this sympathy seeking article designed to smear wings and the SNP by association.

  188. schrodingers cat says:

    you forgot when the unionist thugs were found guilty, the papers ran with a photo of yes supporters

    I think the rev wrote an article about it?

  189. chris kilby says:

    Caught red handed. And red faced. Keep up the good work.

    (What was that Iain Macwhirter said again about bleating politicians playing the Twitter Martyr? Maybe he should write another column about the obvious publicity pitfalls of reminding people about stories more than a year old…)

  190. Ruby says:

    cyril mitchell says:
    5 January, 2016 at 6:35 pm

    Confirms my opinion that Herald (and Scotsman) are kept afloat by Westminster

    Ruby replies

    I was amazed to find out how much the BBC spent on newspapers.

    Newspaper probably don’t care what readers who buy one single copy per day think they’ll be more interested in the big spenders who have tax payers money to spend on buying £2,500 worth of newspapers per week.

    Wings will be seen as a threat to this tax payer funded subsidy.

  191. chris kilby says:

    Another four months of this hysterical “Wings/SNP BAD!” shite to look forward to. Makes me wish I could vote SNP twice.

    Oh… I can!

  192. chris kilby says:

    Anne Begg isn’t a Nazi. She’s a numpty.

  193. Al-Stuart says:

    Just read the factless fictional rant from David Leask, the so called chief reporter at the provincial Glasgow Herald and like many am disgusted at this defamation and sewer standard publishing.

    Stuart, just say the word – start a CROWDFUNDER to litigate against this man personally and his rag corporately.

    I for one will be delighted to stump up a decent wedge of cash just to see this Leasky man face proper legal music. Not a flacid 2 column centimetre apology from the Glasgow Herald on page 36 of that sad and dying newspaper.

    I reckon a fair few of us on here would feel mighty relieved if someone was to start fighting back against these wretched hacks and their Andrex substitutes.

    The same fair few would I suggest be willing to pop a few quid into a crowdfunder for some cleansing light to be shone on liars who masquerade as professional journalists.

  194. liz says:

    Leask has taken a step too far – this is where their smugness gets them -thin they can get away with anything.

    Agree with the others sue them and crowd fund if necessary.

    The Orkney 4 got £200K+.

    Neil McKay Sunday editor saying he’s leaving twitter cos he’s bored, it’s possible he wants to dissociate himself from this article

  195. mealer says:

    Im really surprised at the incompetence of the Herald in publishing this scurrilous statement.Sue.

  196. One_Scot says:

    Is it just me or does that David Leask look as if his pants are filling up with stuff.

  197. Harry McAye says:

    So nowt on either news programmes tonight about the excellent waiting time news, the best for 5 years but STV still manage an NHS Bad feature on cancelled operations.

    BBC Reporting Scotland also do a very different feature on Richard Lochhead MSP tonight than the one they did at lunchtime. Then, we heard him mention that the Scottish govt’s budget had been cut too, in response to the question about SEPA’s budget being cut. Tonight, that part was omitted and they cut from his response to footage of folk piling up sand bags, while he was still answering the question. Nice diversionary tactic.

  198. Patrick Roden says:

    been watching Revs Twitter feed and it’s clear that David Leask has taken the fact that Scottish/UK journalists are being held to account by Wings, very badly indeed.

    His reaction has been to flat out Lie, with one cracker being that in spite of what sites like Wings claim, Scottish media outlets are doing just fine!!!

    I’m sorry David, but us plebs have awoken and we are not as daft as you seem to think, the fact that people have needed to be sacked as well as the countless journalists who have recently been moved on to English news-based jobs, as well as the downsizing of office space are all strong indicators of an industry in terminal decline.

    This coupled with the terminal decline of your sales figures (and the changes to local rather than national figures that the Herald uses to attempt to mask your decline to advertisers, all adds up to the clear conclusion that you are lying through your teeth.

    These are my own personal thoughts and not those of Wings, but if you don’t like them you can always contact your legal team…

    But you won’t will you David?

    …because the one thing Scottish Journalists fear above all, is being held to account for the lies, smears and downright betrayal of Scots, that you low life scumbags have participated in for year upon year, on behalf of your wealthy Elite-type owners.

  199. crisiscult says:

    @Brian Doonthetoon

    thanks. Daisley is a news of the world style sensationalist, these days known as clickbaiter, and he’s the master clickbaiter. Really I shouldn’t be reading that at all but curiosity got me.

  200. One_Scot says:

    David Leask – ‘a clumsy SEO header’. Yeah, right, tell it to the judge mate.

  201. Now's the Hour says:

    Leask’s latest dose of diarrhoea shows they’re feart big time and know the clock is ticking. Take the shitewipe for every last penny.

  202. heedtracker says:

    Anne Begg isn’t a Nazi. She’s a numpty.

    Begg was my MP for a long time, her and Frank Doran divided up Aberdeen for SLab.

    What they both demonstrated was how little a Westminster MP actually does in their constituency but how powerful they were as lobby fodder for Bomber Bliar, Crash Gordon, Lord Flipper of Mayfair etc.

    People I know that had any contact with Begg or Dorran said there was lots teeth sucking, head shaking, tea and sympathy but at the end of it, SLab unionists own Aberdeen city council and that’s the end of it.

    I voted for her and it still makes me shudder to think how ball achingly naive I was to believe the red tory party were going to be any different from the blue ones.

    Begg was also one the most expensive MP’s ever in the history of that Westminster job for SLabour life. No wonder they’re still picking fights with rotters what wont vote SLab again, like me.

  203. One_Scot says:

    If David Leask back-pedals any faster, he’ll go over his arse.

  204. McDuff says:

    DON`T buy the Herald.
    DONT`T buy the National.

    Rev i will dig deep if you decide to sue as this kind of filthy journalism has to be challenged once and for all.

  205. Alasdair Stephen says:

    David Leask was the investigative reporter who did a huge power of work on the ‘Scotching the Myth’ series of articles (along with Douglas Fraser) back in 2007. These articles proved beyond doubt that Scotland was not subsidised and I think had a signficant influence on how the Scottish economy was viewed by the public and politicians alike. Claiming Scotland was like Bangladesh was no longer a option for any politician.

    I’m saying this because I think some on here think David Leask is a Unionist. I think he – along with Tom Gordon and Paul Hutcheon – is an excellent journalist who manages to hold all sides to account. I suspect all three voted Yes but none have revealed how they voted which is as it should be for investigative political reporters.

    All these reporters are far too defensive and thin-skinned when it comes to criticism though. Their profession is under serious stress and seeing their resources shrink, colleagues let go and workload increase, is probably the reason for the bunker mentality often displayed.

    None of this excuses the misrepresentation of what Wings said but I do have sympathy for Anne Begg. Someone crouches down beside her wheelchair and a photo is taken. There is little that she can do. It was her colleagues that should be held responsible for letting the NF campaign with Labour that day.

    Nevertheless, the Herald article is a perfect example of the kind of journalism Iain McWhirter’s warned against. A politician playing the victim for social media abuse which can’t be found let alone being the ‘anonymous ramblings’ of someone in a pub.

    The Herald slipped up here but I suggest that people presume David Leask is a Yesser before attacking him for this and other articles. He’ll be working in hellish conditions for an editor who has decided that the weekly paper must be Unionist in outlook.

  206. snode1965 says:

    This story has Gardham written all over it! He has obviously “got the nod” on the National front page. A quick phone call to Leask, demanding a counter-attack article tout sweet, and this is the disastrous result….kerchiinngg!

  207. Jake Gittes says:

    As others have said Stuart, need a fundraiser , just say the word. Hire the best there is.

  208. bookie from hell says:

    refuse the out of court settlement REV

  209. cearc says:


    2.5K per week is just what they spend on the Guardian!

    The page shows all the numbers and costs.

    The Mail is of course outraged that it is so much more than they spend on the Mail but the numbers purchased are actually not that different.

    It’s over half a million a year and that’s just the main UK papers. I assume that they are also propping up the ‘Scottish’ press.

    It would be interesting to find out just how much of the Herald and Scotsman sales are to the B(AE)BC.

  210. One_Scot says:

    ‘David Leask is a Yesser’

    Nearly pissed myself. You’ll be telling me he has a full head of hair next.

  211. Fred says:

    Nothing like a lawyers letter through the door for slackening sphincters. 🙂

  212. Onwards says:

    McDuff says:
    5 January, 2016 at 8:35 pm
    DON`T buy the Herald.
    DONT`T buy the National.


    Then we would be shooting ourselves in the foot.

    Same American owner, but hundreds of different papers – all with different editorial lines, and they all sink or swim on their own sales figures.

    Fact is the BritNats won’t be able to stop laughing if the only independence supporting newspaper goes tits up.

    I know it’s not the main factor, but surely having a balancing viewpoint on the supermarket newstands has helped to keep up the SNP polling figures over the last year.

  213. jdman says:

    “In the age of the selfie, surely we should stop using photos as proof of “guilt by association”

    David Leask

    Lets remember he said that!
    because it will come back to royally bite him and all the other low life’s in the Scottish media on the arse like….oh this I suppose

    “The right to smear an opponent is not one we should be defending.” Alistair Carmichael, 2010

    Aint Schadenfreude fuckin great?

  214. Gary45% says:

    Aye Stu, as already said, just say when you need to start the crowd funder.
    And there was me thinking NF stood for Nobby Foreskins.
    “Well they look like a bunch of bell ends.”

  215. Robert Peffers says:

    There is more than a hint of the stench of sheer desperation emanating from the SMS these days.

  216. Thepnr says:

    Called a Nazi by Wings over Scotland on Twitter:

    Now where did that headline actually come from?

    1. Was it something Anne Begg “actually said”?

    2. Might it have been inferred by something Anne Begg “actually said”?

    3. Or was it just made up to suit an agenda of the journalist or his employers?

    4. Something else?

    I suspect number 3 because if 1, we would have had a quote, if 2 we would have have evidence such as the actual tweet calling Anne Begg a Nazi or a confession from WingsScotland after contact with the Rev from David Leask.

    None of this happened, no evidence of a tweet and no contact with @WingsScotland.

    I guess then so called experienced and professional political journalists feel that it is OK in this political climate to just print anything they like even if libelous?

    I believe that as long as they are meeting the criteria of attacking the idea of Independence they feel they will be immune from criticism.

    The really sad thing is that they will be immune from criticism from within their own little Unionist circles and Unionist supporting friends including Tories, Labour and Lib Dems.

    I suspect if the Rev hadn’t raised this a level this morning by referring it to his solicitors it would be tweets all round with pats on the back from the usual co-conspirators in the corporate media.

    They have a major problem now, not only can’t they get away with printing out any old lies as headlines without anyone noticing they are lies but they can expect some blowback. That’s what is happening here, almost immediately after the REV tweeted his disgust at the lies, the headline was changed.

    Too late, damage has been done, they brag about their online viewing figures, then it’s likely that 10’s of thousands if not more would have read that headline before it was changed. Too late.

    The whole point of the article was obviously not to tell you all about Anne Beggs plans after losing her seat, the whole point was to discredit the Wings Over Scotland blog.

    By associating the site with accusations of bullying and intimidation of a disabled person they were hoping to produce some public fury, at the same time seeking sympathy for the disabled and disgust at the vile blogger from Bath!

    Using the media to build a foundation for on a Union that is based on lie after lie in the headlines will surely ensure that that foundation is weak.

    It is for certain then that the foundation will crumble and the whole rotten edifice will come tumbling down upon them.

    Independence is coming.

  217. cearc says:

    It has, sadly, diverted attention from her moans about how difficult it is being disabled without a bunch of taxpayer funded lackeys doing everything for you.

    How sad and her with just her mp pension and resettlement allowance!

  218. Patrick Roden says:

    For the commenters who have been writing that David Leask might be a Yes voter and is not anti-Scottish etc,

    The claim is that he has lied about Wings in the article, not the yes movement.

    He has also been making insulting comments about Wings on twitter recently, in spite of the Rev saying that as far as he can recall he has never said anything personally offensive about D Leask on twitter or on Wings.

    Even if D Leask came out for Yes and held his new SNP membership card up on a picture for us all to admire, it doesn’t change the fact he has been lying about and smearing the Rev (and with the picture) making the whole thing more and more personal.

    It is no coincidence that journalists themselves have commented recently about the influence that Wings is having.
    It is also no coincidence that journalisms lack of integrity has seeped into the national awareness with people beginning to express complete loathing and contempt for the whole profession.

    And who is it in Scotland who is doing more than anyone to bring this about?

    Now for some journalists, you’d think they’d look at themselves in the mirror and decide to mend their ways,

    But since Scotland’s print media is mostly English Elite type owned, these journalists have no scope to start telling us the truth or offer a balanced political coverage,

    Q. So what’s left to do?

    A. Attack the one exposing them!

    And for Scotland’s Unionist Media…that attack will be directed at Rev/Wings.

    …Unless we all support him to fight back.


  219. I Clark says:

    Alasdair Stephen says: “… David Leask … – along with Tom Gordon and Paul Hutcheon – is an excellent journalist … I suspect all three voted Yes …”

    I don’t know about David Leask and Tom Gordon, but Paul Hutcheon is certainly not an excellent journalist and in my view is more likely to have been a No than a Yes voter. He implied soon after the referendum – in a Sunday Herald article – that the BBC was not biased against the Yes side. This suggests to me that he is either a deluded unionist or massively lacking in analytical skills or both.

    Whatever way you look at it, his judgement is suspect and his output needs to be scrutinised accordingly.

  220. Rab Dickson says:

    Alasdair Stephen’s post is bang on the money.

  221. McDuff says:

    How is the National a pro independence newspaper?
    All its front pages are soft with very little defence of the Scottish government or its MP`s when they are constantly and relentlessly attacked by papers like the Herald. You buy a National and you help the Herald.

  222. Rab Dickson says:

    For the record (And I have very good reason for saying so) I genuinely think Leask is a Yes supporter.
    He has an ego too and is as dismissive as all hell.
    He is also an idiot on this occasion.

  223. One_Scot says:

    Yawn, the tag team, looks like it’s time for bed.

  224. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    McDuff at 8.35

    Any sensible reason why I shouldn’t buy a newspaper that supports independence?

  225. Rab McColl says:

    Two observations:

    WOS can anticipate copious quantities of negative and manufactured stories over the coming weeks to discredit it. Personally I think this will fail – why?

    SNP supporters can see through the negative spin and attacks the press and red tories manufacture against Jeremy Corbyn, It’s not beyond non SNP supporters to see through the mud slung at WOS, SNP or independence supporters.

    Secondly, this story lays bare for all to see how stupid labour mps were and ex mps are. Or is it Ms Begg is completely naive in that she believes people will accept the herald story at face value?

    No doubt the herald can present posts on this blog as justification for their story and use this post as an example of a vile nat calling a defeated mp stupid or naive? Please do so, on this occasion Ms Begg has done herself no favours! I wonder what the Sunday Herald will report on this?

  226. Alan Crerar says:

    This will be an interesting test for The National’s own independence. Will it be allowed to report damaging allegations against a sister paper? Will it even be able to condemn the Herald for its stupidity?
    If the parent company accepts that the Herald is going down sooner or later, then commercial good sense says that The National should cover the story with honesty.
    I wonder?

  227. Thepnr says:

    @I Clark

    Paul Hutcheon is a definite Unionist, compare his reporting of the interview and questioning of Rev Stu with Prof Adam Tomkins 20th July 2014.

  228. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Alasdair Stephen at 8.53

    Sorry, Alasdair,doesn’t wash – and if Tom Gordon voted YES I’m Donald Duck

  229. Rab Dickson says:


    I don’t need a team pal. I can speak for myself.

  230. Rab Dickson says:

    Also for the record. I have not a clue about Hutcheon (except a suspicion he’s a yoon) or Tom Gordon (same suspicion)
    Leask is an arrogant arse who blocked me on twitter for hee haw…but I do think he is on the indy side.

  231. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    Hi McDuff.

    The National is a blatantly pro-indy newspaper. Contrary to what you suggest, that doesn’t make it a pro-SNP newspaper.

    Thus, it may raise concerns about certain SNP actions and policies, without disparaging its pro-indy credentials.

    I think…

  232. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    The contact address for Gannett,the owner of the Herald “newspaper” is
    Corporate Communications Gannett Co., Inc
    7950 Jones Branch Drive
    McLean, VA 22107-0150

    I had a degree of success about ten years ago by contacting Gannett direct about imbalance in the Herald

  233. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    Brian Doonthetoon at 11.33


  234. Cadogan Enright says:

    Sue himself personally and the paper. I’d be happy to contribute

    If only the SNP would start this policy – they should be able to afford it now!

  235. Glasca Keelie says:

    Accept no apology, just see them in court.

    On another tack, Gardham had a piece in the Sunday Herald magazine, might have been something on travel, holidays, something on the East Neuk. Don’t know and don’t want to know.

    If the denizens of the G. Herald start invading the Sunday one, I’m finished with it. Hutcheon is enough. And there was a nasty little piece by Judith Duffy on P 3, NHS, taking toll on staff mental health. 575,000 working days lost over 4 years to stress.

    Hing oane, how many NHS employees do we have, Mr. Google. Oh, 137,500. So, lets see 137,500 by 4, thats, thats, why 548,00 employee/years. So each employee had an average of just over a day per annum off due to stress, or something.

    Talk about onionist shite, or smearing our SNH Service.

  236. Glasca Keelie says:

    I should have said there , I’m willing to chip in my lucky sixpence to the pot.

  237. Brian Doonthetoon says:

    “Talk about onionist shite, or smearing our SNH Service.”

    There was some typing, a few days ago, of the rebranding of the ‘Scottish Health Service’ as ‘NHS Scotland’, which was construed as a political move, to give the impression of a UK-wide organisation.

    I’ve been thinking about this.

    To rebrand back to the ‘Scottish Health Service’, could be done on the cheap by providing “S” stickers to cover the “N” character on vehicles, until those vehicles are replaced, and wee stickers could be supplied, with the new “SHS” logo (same style as the original) to stick on headed paper, until stocks run out and are replaced.

    I’m fed up seeing ‘Scottish’ newspapers using stock pics of the English NHS logo, to illustrate stories about NHS Scotland.

    The NHS England logo is slanted; the Scottish logo isn’t.

  238. Onwards says:

    @Brian Doonthetoon,

    I think that is something that should be done officially and properly. Hopefully it will be considered after the Scottish elections when there is more time.

    I’m sick of seeing the Scottish NHS get tarred with the same brush when there is trouble with the English NHS.

    When the Southern General was renamed, one of the reasons given was a geographical one – that it wasn’t just limited to Southern Glasgow.

    NHS Scotland should be rebranded for the same reasons – to make clear it isn’t just a branch office of a UK NHS. Because that is what many folks think at the moment.
    Especially when our income taxes are going to be going directly towards it. Voters should know what exactly they are paying for.

  239. kininvie says:

    I wonder how much of this stooshie has to do with the fact that Newsquest contracts out its subbing to ‘hubs’ in Newport and Weymouth…

    If the Herald is part of this (unknown), it is quite probable that someone hundreds of miles away from Scotland, tasked with optimising search engine hits, stuck in the obvious key words into the headline without any clue about the consequences.

    Outsourcing your subbing is a blindingly stupid idea in the first place, and it obviously isn’t working too well:

  240. yesindyref2 says:

    @Alasdair Stephen
    I’m with you on this one. Leask is probably a yesser, Gordon is quite likely yes, and Hutcheon possibly. But Hutcheon can’t stand Sheridan – there are yes posters who also can’t – and took offence at being hurtled off the stage of the hope over fear. He then got trashed by most of us including me in the Herald and took the huff. He’s getting over that though, I think. Leask is over-defensive, the media can do no wrong.

    What’s needed is a Scottish paper, with owners in Scotland, preferably standback owners politically neutral, or as close as possible. And headlines and subs written in Scotland, photographs taken by Scottish photographers. Hunter is a Unionist but might be able to force himself to be neutral if balanced out by someone Indy.

    It’s not going to happen though so the likes of Leask is going to be increasingly forced to increasingly defend the totally indefensible – bias and outright lies.

  241. yesindyref2 says:

    Yes it should be rebranded as the SHS. As it is we have a wonderful National as in UK Health Service and a shite one as in National Health Service Scotland region of North Britain, the primitive wasteland somewhere north of Watford, whenever the media wants to do its usual SNP Bad Jock stuff.

  242. Sandy says:

    Why not place an advert in all main press encouraging all who are able to log on to WoS.

    Would they accept it?

  243. Robert Louis says:

    Totally agree with comments above, saying the Scottish NHS should be renamed with its correct and more appropriate title of Scottish health service.

    It is tiresome the way many in the media deceptively use the similar name of the NHS in Scotland and England to conflate problems in England to somehow relate also to Scotland.

    Things such as names etc.. DO MATTER in the long term. The Scottish Government has worked hard in conjunction with health service employees in Scotland to make the health service here, much better than in Tory run England or Labour run Wales. So it makes sense to ensure the media cannot willfully confuse people about it.

  244. Glesca Keelie says:

    Why does the SNP, and I’m one, appear to be so timid when defending themselves against attack when on the TV. And I’ve said that to MSP’s.

    Or, in this instance, changing branding (slightly) of one of our institutions. Should have been done a few years ago.

    We have got to differentiate from rUK as much as possible.

  245. Clydebuilt says:

    Rev. Still…..sue them till they print the truth….
    Would be good to see Gardham and pals being forced to stop printing the Daily Big Lie under the Editorial…..


    It’s so big they print it in capitals.

  246. Grouse Beater says:

    “I’m saying this because I think some on here think David Leask is a Unionist. I think he – along with Tom Gordon and Paul Hutcheon – is an excellent journalist who manages to hold all sides to account. I suspect all three voted Yes but none have revealed how they voted which is as it should be for investigative political reporters”

    If that were so their animosity towards Wings makes no sense. And how they balance conscience with working for a pro-Union newspaper is another mystery.

    If they are in-the-closet Yes voters then why not argue with the paper’s owners for a weekly paid Wings column; could be a topic lifted from the site. I’d call that a fair balance, if balance of political news is what they aim to provide. But read their articles carefully and you will see the sly linguistic slant.

    Since the Referendum provided irrefutable evidence the majority of voters (Yes and No’s) want greater powers for Scotland, where is the Herald’s prominent bias in favour?

  247. Jim says:

    “Called Nazi after Wings over Scotland suggested she campaigned with National Front: Anne Begg MP on social media bullying”
    Words are a wonderful thing, this headline still implies that you called her a Nazi!

    ‘Wings over Scotland suggested she campaigned with the National front’ implies Wings suggesting that she follows their Nazi mandate and values when only later in the article it explains she was accused of sharing a platform with them against independence which she did along with lot of other unsavoury characters.

  248. stonefree says:

    @ Grouse Beater 10:15 am
    Fair comment,but if as he says “a bad boy did it”. Where is any evidence that’s really marginal,but is the Herald so insecure that a store cat edit the copy!!
    That I find had to believe.
    Of course he could have been ordered to do it in that fashion!
    In that case where is the “Journalistic Integrity”
    Or he just threw it together,
    Would you,SC or the other writers on here have done that?
    At best it was unprofessional!!

  249. @Jim 5 January, 2016 at 3:11 pm

    Sorry if I misread the article, but I thought Leask was the contributor and not the author.

  250. Andrew McLean says:

    Crowd fund to sue a newspaper, normally I wouldn’t go for this as it is their job to fly close to the flame.
    But they crossed the line, I don’t blame David Leask, he is just a inept trainee journalist hacking his way through life, It is actually the senior management team at the Herald that are truly to blame, recent staff cuts, taking more calm heads from the decision making, have left the herald as editorially stable as the Titanic was seaworthy two hours after she struck that iceberg.

    As well as lacking in journalistic integrity, financially they are a basket case, I don’t suppose the out of court settlement would be enough to sink them, but would you like to be known as the man who helped start the ball rolling that saw the end of them?

    This battle for the attention of the right wing between the Herald and the Scotsman can only have one winner, I just wish the Scotsman would liable you again, that would sit easier with me, regardless of personal ties.

    But they are big boys, if they cant run their newspaper without lies, then to hell with them!

    Count me in!

  251. Bill McLean says:

    Andrew – David Leask is no “trainee”! He may write and behave like one but he has been around for quite a long time.

  252. Al-Stuart says:

    Andrew McLean – 6 Jan at 10.57.


    “…senior management team at the Herald that are truly to blame, recent staff cuts, taking more calm heads from the decision making, have left the herald as editorially stable as the Titanic was seaworthy two hours after she struck that iceberg.

    Andrew, what gets me is that after the General Election in 2015, the Herald, and for that matter the Scotsman know 50% of Scotland are unhappy with the democratic defecit and are, to varying degrees, now minded for Independence – as evidenced by the fact 50% of us voted SNP in May 2015.

    Yet these two “respectable” broadsheets still demonise us all here. When they trash the SNP they disrespect 50% of Scotland. That is stupid, and in their terms, simply bad business practice. Kicking 50% of your market is going to result in terminal decline of the newspapers.

    The cherry on the cake is to defame people who are Independence minded. David Leask has crossed a line.

    Leask is an idiot. He is STILL at this Nazi libel – just 30 minutes ago…

    “Ex-MP Anne Begg: horrible accusation that I backed Nazis will not go away”

    You would think cub reporter Leask’s leash would have been yanked by his boss after his lying has been exposed…

    But no. The Yoon Leask, and his water cooler buddy, wee Magnus Gardham, stung by his frequent roastings are at it with retweeting of Nazi lies:

    So today I decided to invest £25 in shares of that newspaper. Will see at the AGM what the “business” case is for letting your reporters lie about 50% of the Scottish electorate.

    Anyone care to join me?

    Time the Yoon hacks were shown the meaning of that well worn phrase: “impartial and balanced reporting”.

  253. cyril mitchell says:

    Tweeted the author of the article David Leasky and asked why lie? plus sent link to this article. Truth must be painful, he has blocked me from sending and seeing his tweets

  254. Andrew McLean says:

    Bill, Says 11:39

    Bill if it walks like a duck!

    Al- Stuart.

    Actually might be worth a punt in any case ‘ News room of the future anyone? But next AGM not till June

    but trying to be ethical, not sure if Johnston Press are!

  255. Andrew McLean says:

    Al- Stuart
    Also Market share, forgive my massive generalisation but oldies read newspapers, oldies vote No, so satisfy your customer base! Bigger problem for the Scotsman uniquely in the JP portfolio is the drive to on line (paid) content, that is mainly Yes supporting. And if you look at the comments section you will see its the same old lot, and not enough to generate much revenue in click through traffic, so they have a dilemma. Incidentally the same dilemma that the Herald had, hence the birth of the National.

    With new faster decisions to capture market share, predominately on line market share, bye the newly appointed Directors, are we to see the launch of a new offering from JP????

  256. Andrew McLean says:

    by not bye!

  257. Haggis Hunter says:

    I remember Anne Begg, saying Salmond is a Nazi

  258. Jim says:

    @Peter McCulloch says:
    6 January, 2016 at 10:53 am

    @Jim 5 January, 2016 at 3:11 pm

    Sorry if I misread the article, but I thought Leask was the contributor and not the author.
    No need to apologise at all, the guy was trying to blame a staffer so I can understand the confusion.


  259. Cuilean says:

    Let’s not worry too much about ‘poor’ Anne Begg.

    Having ‘served’ Scottish Labour from 1997 to 2015, the ex-MP’s minimum pension is £25,148 (on top of her state pension), more if she held any ministerial/committee posts.

    Begg will also receive a one-off £33,000 ‘resettlement’ award, which is paid to all MPs who stood for re-election but lost.

    Begg can also claim ‘winding-up’ expenses, up to £57,000. Given her track record of maximising expenses, I suspect she’ll stay true to form.

    Fegs. £115,148 in less than one year. It’s a wee shame, eh?

    Still, Begg might just need every penny, if the Herald implicates her in its defamation defences.

  260. Cuilean says:

    On 23 December last month, Anne Begg secured a ‘nice wee earner’ with the Scottish Social Services Council.

    Seemed all those ‘nazi’ allegations have not stop her continuing feathering her nest.

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