Index on Censorship: Give them absolutely nothing..

There is always more than one way to cut up any given story. Some of the people I’ve spoken to offline today take a fairly consistent and robust view on the police’s right to gather material evidence in pursuit of a crime. It’s a view several of them have taken consistently throughout the latter parts of the Troubles peace process, when it was decidedly unfashionable to take such a stance. Until recently it has been de rigeur to treat some ‘terrorists’ as trusted sources. Now, suddenly, the cultural rules around reporting terrorism, it seems, are being quietly rewritten. Anthony McIntyre’s been interviewing some authoritative witnesses for Index on Censorship; and the collective verdict is that Ms Breen should stick to her gunsEditorial note: Please note that anything in the least refering to Ms Breen and not the substance of the issue will be removed. There’s been way too much fair gaming and deliberate story killing going on… Those in any confusion about the commenting policy of the site should read them again

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  • picador

    Our role is to put information into the public domain. If a journalist becomes a gatherer of evidence or witness for the state, they cease being a journalist.

    Put the information into the domain by all means. Spare us the propagandist slant.

    When you’re down in Kilwilkie try taking to the some of the ordinary ‘unsexy’ people and see what they have to say about Mr Duffy. Find out what it’s like to live in an estate controlled by a gang of thugs.

  • Mick Fealty

    You mean like this one: http://url.ie/1jhi?

  • Sophie

    Interesting article as always.

    Is there anything ordinary folk can do to support her?

  • picador

    Mick,

    McIntyre did a good job of exposing some of the more blatant Provo thuggery. A pity he could manage to do the same for the brand of thuggery deployed by the Notarantonios.

  • picador

    Correction: A pity he couldn’t manage

  • picador
  • Mick Fealty

    Picador,

    So what are we to make of your first response, if you actually knew about the Ballymurphy stuff when you ‘said’ it? Was it a genuine mistake? Or were you indulging in a flagrant piece of Fair Gaming?

  • dunreavynomore

    Not exactly an in depth investigation, Picador!
    He makes no attempt to explain why S.F. seem to have lost control of Lurgan nor does he even glance at the serious history Lurgan republicans have of their people being murdered by the R.U.C on its streets. Simply to blame Duffy for the ills of Lurgan is puerile and does no service to journalism or to Lurgan.
    Could you point me in the direction of any more indepth articles by that chap so that I can consider his merits as ‘reputable investigative journalist’?

  • picador

    I don’t understand your question Mick, nor the relevance of the Ballymurphy link (unless it was to ‘smoke me out’ as a Provo sympathiser). One things for sure – the Notarantonio’s are no choir boys.

    [text removed – read the fecking guidelines above! – mods]

  • dunreavynomore

    “If you want to know what the people who you insist on freeing think I refer you to the last election results.” Picador

    ‘The people I insist on freeing’?

    Now there’s a leap of imagination! Anyone wanting freeing will have to do it without my help,I’m afraid, so I’ll have to leave that to you. You seem to mistake me for a shinner, they’re the ones going to ‘free the people, green the planet, dye gerry A’s hair, stretch wee Barry’s legs’ and so on!
    I simply pointed out that the article you referred to on Lurgan was a very facile piece of work unworthy of much regard. I hope you don’t get so angry about many other people as you seem to do about that tribune journalist as it wouldn’t be good for your overall health and stability. I always find a good laugh calms me down and vents my spleen better than getting excited.Toodle puip, old boy.

  • Picador, Shawn was an occasional contributor to the BBC NI Talkback messageboards.

  • Mick Fealty

    You wouldn’t be avoiding yet another direct question now, would you Picador?

    You’ve just performed another neat little handbrake turn, and in the process giving us precisely the same misleading conflation Mr McGuinness did when he referred to ‘dissident journalists’.

    It’s the fourth estate’s role to report, partially or impartially. It is not its place to seek a mandate, or to usurp the mandate of elected politicians.

    Now, going back a bit, the only piece of mainstream reporting I recall from the Ballymurphy caper (which lasted 6 months, involved 600 individual attacks – including the demolition of a house when the Housing Executive refused to condemn it after it had been arsoned) was a front page story describing the family then under attack as, and I quote, ‘Scum’.

    So if you are going to take bites out of other people’s journalism you could at least provide us with some reasoning rather than making wild and, so far as we can tell, unfounded attacks against those individuals prepared to swim against the prevailing tide to bring out the news.

    Or do you think it is perfectly fine for Northern Ireland to continue as some kind of weird latter day Bermuda Triangle for investigative reportage? If so, you should say so.

  • Mick Fealty

    Picador,

    I hope that last clarifies matters. I’m trying to deal with your contributions in a straightforward manner. Your political motivation does not interest me in the least. However, your faulty reasoning does.

    Bottom line: if you are going to make misleading allusions to the provenance of other people’s work, surely you should be prepared to defend it?

  • Mick Fealty

    For information, Picdor’s last two were removed. Please note from above:

    Editorial note: Please note that anything in the least refering to Ms Breen and not the substance of the issue will be removed.

  • picador

    You wouldn’t be avoiding yet another direct question now, would you Picador?

    You haven’t asked me a direct question yet.

    Not one that I could make head or tail of anyway.

    Yet again I fail to see the relevance of the Ballymurphy feud. Do you want me to have ago at the MSM over their coverage of it? I was so long ago I don’t remember it – and I was out of the country in any case. Sorry.

    As for Suzanne Breen’s coverage of the dissidents. It lacks objectivity to the point of being downright irresponsible. Many people have commented on it.

    You have put up a thread criticising the police – as you are perfectly entitled to do so. Why should journalists be exempt from criticism? What makes them so f**king precious?

    Apart from the fact that you were once part of the fourth estate of course. And, pardon me for saying so but I don’t know how got away with it given your aversion to communicating in plain English!

  • willie s

    Well, Picador, the “substance”, as I recall,of one of your removed posts was that Ms. Breen’s work is “melodramatic”.
    That deserved to be removed given Mick’s early warning.
    Should have been posted on a Literary Criticism thread somewhere.

  • Mick Fealty

    Here is it, in slow motion.

    You retort to a piece by McIntyre above with:

    “Find out what it’s like to live in an estate controlled by a gang of thugs.”

    I reply with a link to McIntyre’s documenting of the ‘Ballymurphy Pogrom’, which you acknowledge you already know about.

    So, I repeat:

    “So what are we to make of your first response, if you actually knew about the Ballymurphy stuff when you ‘said’ it? Was it a genuine mistake? Or were you indulging in a flagrant piece of Fair Gaming?”

    And try to play the ball for once.

  • John O’Connell

    I see you deleted my post, Mick. Are you afraid of the Truth or do you just prefer to live a lie?

  • picador

    What in God’s holy name are you blathering about?

    I am vaguely aware of the so-called Ballymurphy feud. Pogrom sounds a bit over the top but that’s literary criticism. Word is the Notarantonio’s have started fighting among themselves now. I read about it in the Sunday World!

    Anyway the Ballymurphy feud: what about it? Are the press being denied access or something? Outrageous!

    And Suzanne Breen should not have to reveal her sources. I look forward to her piece on Sunday.

  • Sophie

    I think both Mc intyre and Breen both know what its like to live in estates controlled by thugs picador. I’ve heard Suzanne on radio ulster talking about students pushing crap and other stuff through her letter box, without knowing who lived there, while drunk off their heads. It’s well documented where mackers lived before he moved to el paso, so what are you on about?

    Do you think ed moloney shouldn’t write books on the IRA since he lives in NY?

    Your reasoning is flawed.

    You have put up a thread criticising the police – as you are perfectly entitled to do so. Why should journalists be exempt from criticism? What makes them so f**king precious?

    What are you criticising? The propogandist slant? Sorry I don’t see it.

  • picador

    The Sunday Tribune’s Easter RIRA scoop was in my view lacking in objectivity. Feel free to disagree if you wish.

    Likewise a piece about a pro-Duffy meeting in Kilwilkie recently. Full of howls outrage from embittered ex-Provos (from across the six counties), little or nothing about Duffy and co control the place.

    One important piece I did read was about the man who disappeared in Crossmaglen. If his remains are found and God willing they will be the family will surely have cause to thankful.

  • John O’Connell

    It strikes me as quite amusing to see Mick Fealty portraying himself as on the inside track in relation to Provo or dissident thuggery. I suppose there must be some brutal republicans in Bangor where he grew up and in Devon where he lives now.

    Mick, you strike me as a Walter Mitty type character, who likes to associate with the hard men, and dismiss the easy targets. But I suppose that’s alright when you live 500 miles from the hard men you suggest we should all admire.

    I suppose your delusion also leads you to censor a truthful post I made about PIRA involvement in Massereene on a thread about censorship. How hypocritical! As I suggest, you’re quite amusing.

  • latcheeco

    I remember one Easter Sunday afternoon, I think it was back in the early nineties, I was standing mightily bored in Milltown cemetary a few yards away from the podium and a few feet away from a young female journalist (we didn’t know each other) who was, I think, at that time writing for the Belfast Morning Stoop. As she stood there alone taking notes on the Easter message (quite courageously I thought at the time)she was herself being lambasted by the speaker, a future deputy first minister, for a piece she had written that week which had been critical of the physical force chappies. It seems ironic that she is now lambasted by his supporters for not being critical enough of the present physical force chappies. Damned if you do…..

  • picador

    Of course you never agreed with him back then, latcheco. Just happened to be passing through the cemetary, hate physical force, etc. Yeah right.

    They are all a bunch of bully boys.

  • latcheeco

    Picador,
    I was actually laying a wreath for someone but that’s not your business.
    Stick to being embarrassingly gushy over your hero Guido Faulks. It was your finest hour. Other than that you’ve nothing much to say.

  • picador

    Mick,

    RE: #1

    The quote was from Breen cited by McIntyre.

    The rant was inspired by the tone of the Tribune’s recent coverage of a pro-Duffy rally in Kilwilkie.

    Thought she might be off down there tonight for the non-event. Felt guilty about not telling her to take an umbrella.

    Should have been more explicit in my original comments.