I see Chris Hope, my old mucker on the Telegraph, has got a hold of the latest broadside from the Taxpayer’s Alliance on government spending. Interestingly he repeats the TPA’s claims that Stratagem, the Northern Ireland company public affairs company who helped us put together last year’s Slugger Awards, was paid a whopping £900,000 by Scottish Enterprise.
Only they weren’t. It seems the TPA in its eager campaign to rid us of the government funding of lobbyists (as opposed to funding by lobbyists) mistook the local company Stratagem for another quite separate events company in Scotland.
Adds: It raises number of questions. But the one I’d like an answer to is how did a pressure group (ie private lobbyists) get to be treated as a respectable, peer reviewed research institute by a whole swathe of the British press corps.
Fairly embarrassing when the group did not bother to check the veracity of the information. It’s understood that the TPA is now blaming Scottish Enterprise for their mistake.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty