WE knew it was coming. Like day must follow night. Watches were synchronised, heads were shaken and sighs were sighed in resigned anticipation. The first swell of what will so inevitably prove a tsunami of hypocrisy arrived at the start of the new month and was just as predictably proffered forth from the pen of the mighty Martin Samuel.
Big Marty writes for the Daily Mail. Big Marty fights the good fight for truth and will take his literary sword to the serpent of injustice whenever and wherever the hydra raises its head above the parapet of fairness.
Big Marty likes to dive in to meaty subjects. The recent footballing controversy-feasts presented by the racism debates surrounding Liverpool’s Luis Suarez and Chelsea’s John Terry have had Marty fair salivating. Unrestrained he has launched his ampleness into the broth and true to style and form has belly flopped and duly slapped brown residue in all directions.
Big Marty writes for the Daily Mail. The Daily Mail trades in the currencies of pettiness, paranoia, prejudice and self righteousness. The Daily Mail’s owners and staff know that it is a racist organ, and that it caters for those basest instincts, and they carry on regardless. Marty may feel that he is just obeying orders. That in the ivory tower of the sports section he is impervious to the guilt by association implied by his employment.
No dice Marty. You take the Nazi dollar and are therefore inherently part of its war machine. If there is ever a Nuremburg for hacks who work for organs of the bigoted right you will not escape judgement. Too harsh ? Well the Daily Mail may not yet be Der Stürmerbut in some ways it’s worse. At least Hitler’s favourite tabloid wrote its agenda large. The Mail hides behind skirts of sentimentalism and nostalgia, but its message is ultimately no less stark than Der Stürmer’s– There’s us, and then there’s them.
Not a great platform then for Marty to re-invent himself as paragon of liberal virtue, but Samuel is nothing if not a man fettered by the rigours of needing to maintain consistency. He jumps horses like a rodeo legend, and this month we find him volte face-ing from the stance he took in the Luis Suarez case a month ago to a perfectly diametrically opposing view this month, in gallantly coming to the aid of Chelsea, England, God, and Saint George hero, John ‘lock up your wives’ Terry.
Terry, unlike Liverpool’s Suarez, faces full legal due process. He stands accused by the public prosecutor of an alleged vitriolic racist verbal assault on QPR’s Anton Ferdinand. That Suarez’s case did not cause her Majesty’s law enforcers to raise the faintest of eyebrows meant that he was left at the mercy of the golf-club committee level justice meted out by the venerable yet timelessly venereal Football Association.
Suarez, if anyone needs reminding, was accused of a series of racist slurs by fellow professional Patrice Evra during the fraughtness of a Liverpool/Manchester United encounter back last October. Evra’s word alone (for there were absolutely no witnesses to any of his claims) was sufficient for the FA to level a charge of using racist language against the Manchester man.
A charge. Fair enough. Well. Only so, until faced with the eye widening, jaw dropping statistic that 99.5% of those ‘charged’ by the Football Association are eventually convicted of said ‘charge’. That, is some strike rate. That’s a success rate that would have impressed Nazi ‘People’s Court’ judge and jury personification, Roland Freisler back in the 1930’s/40’s, Daily Mail fans.
Even he set free the odd jewish/gypsy/homosexual/dissident lamb to the German state’s slaughter. Statistically speaking it is no exaggeration to categorically state that ‘to be charged by the FA is to be convicted by the FA’.
How this is so is because the FA’s justice system sees it assume the mantle of police force, CPS, and ‘independent’ judge and jury. For the avoidance of doubt let it be made clear once more, for those at the back, that the 3 man judicial panel (as served during the Suarez case) is effectively foisted upon the FA’s hapless defendants. Yes, the panel is ‘approved’ by defending counsel but there is hardly a US style jury selection process undertaken. Suarez and his people had to pick between one set of FA employees or another set of FA stooges. An Hobsonian choice at best.
Big Martin of the Mail felt these kind of reflections mere distractions as he alighted that structurally underpinned soapbox of his at the beginning of the year :
Any impartial reading of the exhaustive detail (in the FA’s 115 page report on the Suarez/Evra case) therein would note its thoroughness. Picking at its weaknesses is an easy game when there is so much information to inspect.
Had the FA released a one- paragraph judgment and punishment, the lawyers — the qualified and those self-deluding amateurs — would have had nothing with which to work.
The more detailed the findings, the more chance there is of unearthing an arguable point. It is not an edifying spectacle, though, this use of technicalities to cloud such a serious issue.
God forbid, Martin, that we knuckle dragging amateurs stop to ponder such distractions as evidence when considering whether or not justice has been served at the back end of an inherently unjust process. A 99.5% successful conviction rate suggests a prosecution factory not a justice system.
That Samuel and his cohorts have not read the fudge that is the FA’s Warren Commission-esque snow job is all too obvious. That he didn’t come close to understanding the linguistic evidence as provided by the FA’s own experts is apparent in the following attempt to draw comparison between the Latin American benign use of the word ‘negro’ and the arcane Alf Garnetism, ‘darkie’ :
And still the war rages over whether negro, as uttered in Rioplatense Spanish, is a racist word. So break it down.
In 1960s Britain before mass immigration had created our cultural melting pot, a factory floor might have a single black worker, newly arrived from the Caribbean. And his mates might give him a nickname, and mean no harm by it.
‘Morning, Darkie’, they might say. And Darkie would say good morning back. He thought little of it. Nor did Sooty, or Sambo, or the white folk who had not yet evolved to understand that to define a man solely by the colour of his skin is demeaning.
…and so Samuel’s Mail mask finally flops to the floor, to reveal his inner Rio-Thamesean little Englander. Martin is telling us, between his lines, that the way those dumbass greaseballs in Suarez’s homeland speak is actually like we used to before we got all educated and civilised. When Suarez’s wife, for instance, calls him ‘negro’ she means it in the ‘bless ’em, they were racists but didn’t even know it’, way that most of us in Blighty did 50 year ago. And no mistake, missus.
It is hard to avoid the distinct impression that Martin Samuel’s understanding of the complexities that surround questions of race and prejudice began and ended whilst watching Warren Mitchell’s vintage depiction of a loveable East End racist in the 1970’s sitcom ‘Till death us do Part’. He just about got that, and has settled on its timeless but simplistic message ever since.
This diatribe, I am quite sure, will be written off as yet another rant by a myopic Liverpool red that self pityingly won’t let sleeping dogs lie. Liverpool and Suarez were prepared to let it lie last October, and were prepared to be magnanimous in their approach to the FA’s hearing in December. After initial fury at the verdict and punishment foisted on their man, Liverpool were prepared to let go at the beginning of this year, in deciding not to appeal the 8 match ban and fine imposed on Suarez.
This one though, won’t go away folks. Not whilst every 1 in 40,000 dick in a Liverpool scarf with a racist attitude is put under every media microscope going, and not whilst a press corps that all but unanimously saw justice as served in the Suarez case, moves towards wanting to default to ‘doing right’ by John ‘England Captain and national treasure’ Terry, in the prelude to his forthcoming day in court.
Martin Samuel, happy back then, in January, that the FA’s self serving Kangaroo court, was sufficient for all to suspend the quest for fuller fairness in the Suarez-Evra case, is now banging his big bass drum to let justice be done though the heavens fall, for his charge, Terry, railing at what he perceives to be a rush to hang his man :
John Terry. Why doesn’t he just sod off? It would be so much more convenient that way.
So much easier for everybody if he would just accept that the verdict of the kangaroo courts is in, without the tiresome necessity of due legal process in a proper one.
Judged unfit to captain England in the grand court of Twitter, messageboards and radio vox pops, why doesn’t Terry just slink away and accept that nobody has the patience for a fair trial these days?
…… What a nuisance he is, with his talk of innocence and his stubborn refusal to stand down…
…..adds Big Marty sarcastically, whilst studiously forgetting his own earlier invoking of Luis Suarez and LFC to take it like men and stop bleating about wanting justice.
Martin’s beef now is that some are calling for John Terry to stand down as England Captain until his name is cleared of the accusation that he called opponent ‘a black cunt’ on an English football field last year.
The problem is Martin, (notwithstanding that you did not afford Johnny foreigner Luis Suarez the same magnanimity just one month ago) that you can’t see that there is a more obviously apparent case for Terry to answer here. Suarez was damned, rightly or wrongly, by the word of one man with a motive. Footballers, especially the modern variety, like to get each other into trouble. It’s what they do in the course of their jobs these days. It gains them a competitive advantage. It helps them win. They are prepared to tell lies, and to feign hurt, on every level, in order to undermine a foe. Neither Samuel, the media in general thought this contemplatable.
John Terry, however, was not called to account by a fellow professional. He was called to account by the police who caught him with the metaphorical bloody dagger in his hand. Now it could transpire that he may not have actually dunnit, so to speak, but it doesn’t look good for ol’ Johnny Terry. That the cameras caught him calling Anton Fedinand ‘ a black cunt’ looks as red-handed as it gets, and his apparent defence (that the cameras missed off the sentence’s pre-fix ‘but I didn’t call you a black …’) seems fairly risible to most casual observers.
Obviously, however, on this one, Marty is clearly correct, in that sentence should not be passed on John Terry until the legal process has been fulfilled. The Samuel stopped clock has found its inevitable mark. However, there’s an argument to say, that so apparently stark is the video evidence against Terry that he shouldn’t be granted the effective career bail of being allowed to hold the England football team’s highest office.
Having defended Suarez, though, let’s give the roguishly cuddly Terry his due as well. That he deserves to be heard and to benefit too from the burden of proof against him being of the ‘unreasonable doubt’ variety, all those that backed the Liverpool man, would agree upon. What will rankle though, and move to seethe, is the two faced, hypocritical, prejudiced myopia of English press men, of which Martin Samuel’s stance is so distastefully typical.
In pouring scorn and shame on Suarez and the Liverpool red brotherhood with relentless swathes of pious pens, the media stood full square behind the ‘kick racism out’ campaign, with justice seen as a potentially regrettable casualty of a nobler quest. Now, though, anti-racist flags are hidden in the bushes in the rush to side with national captain Terry. Swords and scales of British justice in either hand, Martin Samuel topically notes that some truths rise above all others when …… this is a man’s reputation and career at stake. It is not Strictly Come Racism.
No shit, Martin.
I love you, Rob Guttman.
” A 99.5% successful conviction rate suggests a prosecution factory not a justice system.” – superb line.
Slightly let down by the lack of mention of #walrusofhate though
Excellent stuff Rob. Excellent.
Nail. On. The. Head.
i wonder if the odious toad will ever read this?
it would be wonderful for someone to pull him up on that sunday morning festival of smugness that passes for informed football comment.
nice piece rob.
Wasn’t Suarez done on referring to someones skin colour on the pitch. So even Terry gets off the rascism charge with the CPS the FA have a case to handle as him also referring to someone skin colour on the pitch??
It doesn’t matter what the outcome of the CPS Terry case is, the FA can and should immediately restart their investigation into the incident. You know the one that they stopped as soon as the CPS got involved. The SAME one that they went through re Suarez-Evra. This time with SOME evidence!
See this article which confirms that this is the case:
Unfortunately for British Sport, the FA’s ‘fetch’ for letting the Terry case run its full course through the Court, is “we wouldn’t want to do anything that would prejudice the outcome of the case…”; the hypocrites
Great piece, only wish it got the circulation that the Fat Slob is privileged enough to receive…
Samuel deserves to be punched in the face on the hour,half hour and the quarter for his looks alone never mind his ugly slimy weasling journalism
Couldnt have put it better myself but that’s because I don’t have the time! Well done!
Good article. As Cobs said, needs more Walrus of Hate.
Didn’t Suarez actually admit to referring to Evras skin colour?
There was one thing in the way that the Suarez/Evra fiasco that really got on my nerves, and it hasn’t happened nearly to the same extent with Terry.
Each newspaper that I read (Guardian,Telegraph mainly) had an article condemning Suarez for being guilty. From the evidence given in the 115 page report, it is quite clear that you could take it both ways: you can say that there is enough for Suarez to be found guilty, or you can say that there was insufficient evidence. However, no newspaper was willing to provide a balanced report on the case.
They could have very easily said ‘Our editorial line is that Luis Suarez is guity, but in the interests of fairness, here is an article defending him’. This wouldn’t lead to accusations of bias, and would also improve the reputation of newspapers for bringing a fair and clear ruling on the case.
However they didn’t, yet the Mirror and Mail are falling over each other to provide a balanced account for John Terry, with the added fact that their Chief Sports Writers are the one’s defending John Terry.
This is one of the finest articles I’ve ever read. In fact, it’s the polar opposite of the absolute gash that the Wookie wrote in the Daily Fail the other evening.
Rob, I tip my hat.
Bullseye Mr Gutmann! Samuel is so smug and hypocritical it hurts. I’d like to make him read this first, then roll it up, set fire to it and insert it where his sun don’t shine.
Great article, you just inspire. Hope the judicial system is fair and not riddled with loop holes!
Some good points, Rob and on this issue, Samuel has been ridiculously inconsistent. On the whole though, he is a terrific columnist and researches his subjects thoroughly and anyone who often quotes the likes of Half Man Half Biscuit, Bill Hicks or Public Enemy isn’t all bad. He should never have left the Times.
Could you possibly point me in the direction of an article in which he has written something positive about Liverpool, the city or it’s football clubs.
Great article Rob
excellent piece, well written. how hacks like samuel actually get paid for offering their analysis is baffling. love the work lads, well in.
What a excellent riposte to another swamp of hypocrisy courtesy of the Daily Mail. I used to enjoy Martin Samuel’s writing when he was at the Times (which raises the question of how much a “journalist” would compromise his own ideology to suit that of his employer) but anyone who takes seriously his current and skewed pontifications risks some serious brain damage.
Great piece rob.the bar council ,as far back as 2005, told the fa that their disciplinary procedure and burden of proof,balance of probabilities,was not fit for purpose. That it made a mockery of the professionalism of lawyers to gather hard evidence when putting a case together.this also applies,as you’ve pointed out,to the fantasical 99.5 conviction rate.the fa ignored it.on such a serious charge as rascism,a three man panel with a 99.5 percent conviction rate and no evidence,were able to convict suarez does indeed make a mockery of fair justice.that bluto [ samuel ] ,barclay,holt and all the others didn’t even bother to question the validity of the conviction with all its obvious failings, is baffiling.the hypocrisy of samuel isn’t surprising,I don’t think he even knows which one of his
I hope lots of people read M Samuel’s excellent column re Terry yesterday. Not FA, though, clearly.
,,.Sunday Supplement Wagons circling?…
Rob have you emailed this too JABBA? excellent read btw… YNWA
Ah I wish I’d written this. Bloody fantastic mate, funny and absolutely bang on. Cheers!
Fan-fucking-tastic. Absolutely superb Rob.
Superb article. Great job.
Unfortuatelly Terry is not going to be charged so he will be “inocent” because lawyers usually use very “sophisticated” arguments. on teh other hand Suarez is now and will continue to be “guilty” of racism although the FA report says twice they do not consider him racist.
As you said: everything was written.
In this case England looks like a mediaval country, inquisitory and searching for somones’ head to show it in the public square.
El negro Jose (and is not a joke)
How do you know?
Christ there’s some soft shite spoken on this sometimes.
I posted a comment earlier praising Rob and agreeing with him but also saying I like Samuel in general and it never made it past the moderator. Odd.
It did. You must be patient, the moderator is not waiting on your every word.
Apologies, was just a little confused when comments posted after mine appeared and mine didn’t. “Get” it now.
Could not agree more, Rob. Very impressive writing. Not sure if it is just me, but does anyone else see a burgeoning increase in right wing windbags tapping into the base thoughts of the lowest common denominator? Here in the U.S, we have Murdoch’s odious crew spewing bile, and we watch the newt overtly insult the African American. Funny how they all come across as over indulged, frightened pasty white blimps. Time to embrace multiculturalism, indulge in thoughtful dialogue aimed at eliminating all elements of racism. Children are not born racist, bigotry develops through ignorance. Here in the ‘States the writing is on the wall. The population is increasingly multicultural, as is Europe’s. As football fans we are reaping the rewards of accepting more and more players from developing countries, no one can tell me football has not benefited from the influx. The Blatters of this world will soon be ignominious. I refuse to be pessimistic about the future, I only have to look at my kids and their friends who are now young adults. I assume you are around the same age as them Rob, my sincere thanks for reinforcing my view.
Great piece. The FA have painted themselves into a corner on this. The body of evidence against Suarez was based almost solely upon the word of a proven unreliable witness with no real video evidence. The alledged case against Terry clearly has explicit video evidence to potentially damn the man. In this case Terry will get off scott free if found not guilty by the court. Suarez didn’t get that luxury. Still, the media are well and truely showing their colours over a foreign person making an error and a local showing his alleged teeth and true colours with a disgusting tirade. 8 games would be light in this case…..
Suarez was found guilty of referencing skin colour excaerbated by our appalling legal defense.
Let’s wait until we’ve heard ALL the evidence[including unpublished witness statements] before judging the Ferdinand/Terry case.
Fantastic stuff Rob, really impressive.. I just hope the fat fuck in question actually reads it..
Immense piece of writing. There is no counter argument, certainly not from the insepid sensationalist ‘brain’ of Samuels. Taken down well and truly.
Excellent article. I was raging when I originally read Samuel’s article and could not believe the bare faced hypocrisy of the man.
Does he really not understand that by slaughtering Luis whilst defending Terry, he is guilty of blatantly racist behaviour himself ?
Enjoyed that. Can appreciate to an extent the reluctance of some organisations to risk prejudicing a court case, but the rush to protect and defend John Terry from the implications of what he is alleged to have said is deeply disturbing whilst also being vaguely amusing as the hacks involved try to reason their way through the moral conundrums they’ve constructed for themselves over the past couple of months.
Agreed,although it could be argued that Terry faces a higher sanction of being a convicted abuser.
Should make visa applications intresting.
It’s not a justice system, it’s just a system.
Great article, well written….
Excellent article. Just a couple of additional points if I may:
The FA’s were careful to state that they did not believe Luis Suarez to be ‘a racist’, ‘respectable’ newspaper reports in the past week (Kevin McCarra, Guardian and Henry Winter, Telegraph) have referred to his ‘racist abuse’ of Evra. Of course this should be ‘racial abuse’, an important distinction made by the FA panel. This just shows up the fact that mud sticks, whatever self-serving clauses might have been tacked onto the findings.
Secondly, any comment on the Terry case seems to be accompanied (quite rightly) by the ‘innocent until proven guilty’ caveat. Piara Power, etc, I’m talking about you. How they square this with the condemnation of Suarez I don’t know – after all Suarez was not proven guilty of anything. He was found more likely to have ‘done it’ than not, based on an entirely subjective reading of the available testimony. Surely Suarez is innocent until proven guilty too?
There is no consistency of process here. Given that CPS requires a crime to be reported to them prior to investigating, perhaps it should be incumbent upon the FA to report serious issues such as this to the CPS in order that due process can be followed?
Excellent article Rob.
Unfortunate as you say that it will be dismissed as another Liverpool fan’s diatribe.
In the paragraph starting “Suarez……” the second last word should be Liverpool and not Manchester, as in Liverpool man.
Rob fantastic article,
However, are you suggesting that there are one set of rules for jonny foreigner and a different set of rules for a `salt of the earth`, oik from barking and that as Liverpool fans we should clearly be ashamed of ourselves for putting justice before xenophobia
Thanks for the comments. My inference was that I have a nagging suspicion (albeit an unproveable one) that the reason Journos like Samuel adopted a different stance with Terry as opposed to Suarez is because of petty prejudice, on a number of levels.
To be clear I think as fans and human beings we should simply seek the truth and back a process that will best reveal that truth. Had Suarez had a ‘fair trial’ and been proven to have behaved in a racist way then I think the club would have had to consider cancelling his contract.
As it transpired, Suarez received no fair trial, and my personal hunch, based on the evidence that is in the public domain, is that he neither intended or made any racist remarks in Evra’s direction. I can’t be sure of that but I’m content to accept Suarez’s innocence comprehensively, as he has not been proven guilty beyond a very reasonable level of doubt.
Maybe Dalglish will wait to get this season out of the way and then report Suarez to the police himself in the summer. Suarez and Evra get interviewed but the lack of evidence and inconsistencies lead to no prosecution/case. The broadsheet journalists can write about the incident in a different light and some of the sheep in this country can finally consider there may actually be two sides to this; the FA take a serious look at their system due to the embarasement and the tabloids can just make themselves look stupid as usual by trying to cover their backs. Obviously not going to happen and not fair on Suarez, and the FA would never consider taking a serious look at their system
Excellent article Rob, which alas the odious Marty will either not read, or if he did read it would not understand it as it is written with objectivity in excellent English free of ambiguity.
Absolutely brilliant that Rob!
I despise Samuel, always have done. Will never forget the disgraceful way he used to talk about Rafa for all those years. Saw him outside the away end at Chelsea this year, really regret not having a go at him, probably for the best though!!
Brilliant article Rob. A credit to yourself and reds everywhere. The hypocrisy of Samuel, Holt et al has been laid bare in recent weeks. If the puppeteered public had dared to delve into the Suarez case instead of taking the easy spoon-fed mass media garbage, Mr Johnny-Foreigner Suarez, the pantomime villian…wouldn’t of been stigmatised for now and the rest of his days in England. YNWA
Top Stuff, I <3 you Rob!
Looks like Mr Samuel may have had a look at this Rob, changed his tune today hasn’t he!!
Dispicable fella that Samuel self engratiating the lot of them and the hypocrisy is well I got to laugh otherwise I’d cry.
Nice piece that Rob