As many of you might know, I’ve been on ESA for quite a while now. After the constant bullying I suffered when a teacher, I doubt if I’d be able to work anywhere. I don’t respond to criticism very well anymore and can get extremely bad-tempered when I think I’m being treated unfairly. Whereas I used to, like everybody else, just fume silently and get on with things, I lash out like a drunken Hun. I can feel quite violent, which, considering I’ve never been much of a fighter, could end up with me coming off second-best in any kind of fist-fight. I certainly wouldn’t be a pleasure to work with!
When I receive royalties for sales of my books, I always declare them to the DWP. I don’t make that much so it’s never affected my benefits. If, however, I started to make piles of cash and didn’t bother to declare it, I’d have to do a lot of lying and hiding of papers if I didn’t want to end up being prosecuted. That’s what The Peeppul don’t understand; Rangers did hide all the paperwork to do with their tax-dodging. If there was nothing untoward about what they were doing, then there wouldn’t have been any need for side letters. They cheated and they know fine well that they did.
The reaction of Club 1872 to the suggestion of title-stripping is a lot like some of my reactions; it’s illogical and downright threatening. The difference is that I’m seeing a doctor and am on anti-depressant medication. They, on the other hand, believe that their reaction is normal. Since there has been no criticism of it in the press, then I guess that they see it as normal as well; or, at least, that’s how they’ve been told to view things.
Phil Mac Giolla Bhain and Clumps can often drive me nuts when they post on Twitter to highlight posts on their blogs. You follow the link and get the feeling that you’ve read it before; then you look at the date… Sometimes, though, the old post is completely apt for what is currently going on. Clumps’s post on using child abuse as a point-scoring exercise is such a one and is worth reading, even if you’ve seen it before. Find it here.
It’s something that doesn’t seem to penetrate the thick skulls of The Peeppul; nobody in the Celtic support wants to cover up anything, least of all child abuse. If an enquiry found that there was a paedophile ring at Celtic, then arrests and prosecutions should follow, along with compensation for the victims from Celtic FC. Nobody at all would criticise that. Any such enquiry, however, has to involve every aspect of football in Scotland, from the grass-roots upward. With recent revelations, the SFA has received calls to institute such an enquiry. They appear, however, extremely reluctant to do so. I wonder why.
Equally, nobody among the Celtic support is going to complain if certain tax dodges used by Celtic players result in them facing demands for the money or even being jailed. Football players earn more than enough without grasping at more. It should be pointed out, though, to the cretinous Club 1872 that these tax-dodging schemes were signed up to by individual players, not the club. Many footballers, as well as showbiz celebrities and business people, use these dodges all over the UK and it’s past time they were clamped down on.
You might find this next bit strange, but I don’t believe that ex-employees of the defunct Rangers FC should have to pay a penny. They weren’t the ones that dodged tax; that was the club. As somebody recently pointed out on Twitter, the net money received by any player would have to have been doubled to include tax, which should have been deducted by his employer. The players didn’t win from the use of EBTs; it was the club, which saved a fortune on wages. Besides, any side letters I’ve seen posted on Twitter and the like clearly state that the player will not be liable if it all goes tits-up; any losses due to taxation will be met by the club. Note that it says THE CLUB, not THE COMPANY. Honest Dave’s cronies might have to dig a bit deeper with their loans if they want to continue with the ‘same club’ fallacy.
The media, meanwhile, wants us all to forget everything that happened and ‘move on’; it all happened a good while ago, after all. Perhaps they’d like to say that to the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, or Operation Yewtree. In fact, let’s forget all historic cases of abuse, murder or fraud. It’s a pretty untenable position.
A further point; one which might sound a bit cold, but I don’t mean it that way. Let’s just, as The Peeppul desire, concentrate on Celtic for the moment and ignore, as they do, the child abuse that went on at other clubs. We already know that child abuse occurred at Celtic Boys Club and that others at Celtic might well have been involved; how does that affect the titles the club won? It’s a matter for the police, not the rules and regulations of football. If we are to take major crimes by individuals as a reason to strip titles, then surely staving in the back of somebody’s skull with an oar should also count in such a context.
Speaking of the Bird Man of Govan, I see many of The Peeppul are now demanding that their wartime titles be included in their ‘record-breaking’ total. Which titles are we talking about here? After all, Rangers, unlike other clubs that struggled to put a team on the pitch, had enough personnel in ‘reserved occupations’ to have teams in two, separate leagues. Do they really want to open that particular ‘can of worms’?
Finally, an appeal on behalf of…well, myself. My re-application for ESA was recently turned down, though I am strenuously appealing the decision. Don’t worry, however, things might be a bit tight buy I’m not having to keep ‘belly from backbone’. I’m not quite of the standard of Billy ‘Burger’ King, but it would take a good bit of starving before my belly-button became intimately acquainted with my spine! So what can you do? Well, I’m not asking for donations. What I’d appreciate is if you’d maybe take a bit of time to promote my books, especially the Neo-Gers saga, on Celtic media. Maybe just mention that Clash of the Agnivores is worth a look. Thanks. If you can’t manage it, then ego te absolvo.
“Awright, troops? Huv yez goat yer briefs fur the Sellick game it Windsor Park? It’s gonny bae some few days, gettin’ pished an’ singin’ an’ Taig-baitin’ oan the Eleventeenth an’ the Glorious Twelfth an’ then a couple-a days tae sober up tae watch they fuckin’ Tarriers get knoacked oot-y Europe. Jist mind, boays, we’ve goat God oan wur side! Mibbe aw the Sellick players’ll choke oan the lingerin’ fumes-a burnin’ tyres ur sumhin’. Ma gout’s gonny bae playin’ up like hell, but what the fuck! If ye canny get pished oan the Twelfth, then what’s the point-y livin’? Fur God an’ Ulster, eh?”