Sevco Fans Seem To Have An Endless Need To Cling To Anger And Believe In Fairytales.

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Sevco fans are bubbling away again, and throwing accusations as they tend to do. This time it’s on GersNet, where they’ve turned an attack on Tom English and the BBC into one which takes a shot at our largest shareholder Dermot Desmond.

Let’s start with their rant against the BBC. It amounts to nothing more than a childish tantrum over the occasional bit of negative coverage. The paragraph I find most absurd is when it criticises the BBC for producing the documentaries on Craig Whyte.

You want to talk about wilfully, stupidly, ungracious?

Aside from what the Internet Bampots were writing (and we’re never getting any thanks from the Peepul for warning them in advance) the BBC’s Mark Daly was the first person in the mainstream media to actually tell them the truth about the guy who was running their club.

Rangers/Sevco fans should have been on their knees thanking that guy for bringing that story to them. Instead what? Instead they mounted a pitiful protest outside of its doors. For giving them facts. For telling them their club was in danger, in the hands of a guy with not the slightest scruple. Their ingratitude astounds me. It might well be them at their most moronic, their most short-sighted, and had they protested outside Ibrox instead their first club might still be here.

In terms of their rant against English, I think it’s grossly misplaced.

English has said that their use of EBT’s was unlawful.

Plainly it was.

But if they leave aside that issue, English is the archetypical coward who barely utters a word of criticism in their direction. Yes, at the time of Dave King’s takeover he asked questions about whether or not the South African tax cheat was qualified under fit and proper person regulations … who wasn’t asking that question?

I’ll tell you who; Sevco fans weren’t.

They were happy for the club to be in the hands of a criminal, a man who narrowly avoided jail and who’s running of the club is fundamentally at odds with any of his promises of greater accountability or scrutiny. Sevco fans can be as pissed off with people pointing out those facts to them as they like, but those facts don’t change just because they don’t like hearing about them. English didn’t press the issue; he left it at that.

So too did Graham Spiers, who argued that King didn’t qualify under FPP rules but that the SFA should waive him through anyway because he had money, or claimed that he did. One again, this is a matter of Sevco fans showing fundamental ingratitude.

For them to complain of media scrutiny is sheer nonsense, especially when they get so little of it … but their bitching and whining is one of many reasons their club doesn’t get more of it; paradoxically, the result of that is that a bunch of users and charlatans has been royally grafting them for years.

Their myopic failure to understand that can only hurt them in the long term. A football club actually benefits from scrutiny. Its owners and leaders get better at what they do from knowing the world is watching them. It’s one of the reasons Celtic is so well run, and in spite of fans like me constantly demanding that certain journalists are banned it’s why the club will never actually do it. Because they welcome media attention.

Which is easy when you have nothing to hide, I guess.

Which brings me to Dermot Desmond and their assertions about him and his “apparent business indiscretions.” The key word there being “apparent.” Apparent to anyone who’s actively looking for scandal, that is. Apparent if you ignore a few salient details.

This accusation is in relation to his interests in a bank which was the subject of two separate probes and which received fines in France and the United States for a multitude of offences, including tax evasion, sanction busting and money laundering.

He owns one third of the bank and has a seat on its board. Which means other people own two thirds and also sit on the board. He was not personally named in either case as a “party of interest” and nor is the slightest suggestion in any of the court papers that he was involved in anything illegal.

Their comment is supposition, not evidence and whilst that’s the stock-in-trade of many of the blogs it is odd that they’d choose to utilise the very weapon they are decrying others for.

Dermot Desmond has been the subject of many allegations, but he has no convictions, which makes comparisons between him and the Glib and Shameless Liar absolutely specious. Not that there’s any comparison in the first place as one is a billionaire of global reputation and standing, who has invested in hundreds of business, has interests in dozen of sectors and counts amongst friends Prime Ministers and such like, whereas Dave King is a convicted crook, a huckster of questionable means whose mates include Derek Johnstone, Chris Graham and Jim Traynor.

But where they really come up against a brick wall is that, as I’ve pointed out on here before, the false equivalence extends to the role Dermot Desmond plays at Celtic. We sometimes refer to him here as an “absentee landlord”, but in fact he’s simply the club’s largest shareholder.

(This view of him as our “majority shareholder” is so prevelant I used the term myself at the start of this article before changing it in the first edit, and I know full well he isn’t. But you see how insidious this idea is?)

He’s not the chairman.

He’s not the guy with all the power.

He’s not got 50% of the shares or even the 30% that would see him run afoul of the takeover panel … Dermot Desmond owns around 20% of the club.

And Dermot Desmond has never at any time bankrolled Celtic …

Celtic fans are not afraid of the media scrutinising this guy; indeed, we welcome it because it is important to know exactly who sits on our board.

Amongst other things, Sevco fans always accuse us of wielding enormous political power, but they ignore the fact that it was Celtic’s own supporters who gave the hardest time to John Reid (an ex-Labour government minister) and Ian Livingstone (a Tory peer). It is Celtic fans, more than anyone, who afford the greatest scrutiny to Peter Lawwell. We have always held our boards to account, and always wanted to know what they were up to.

I’m sorry if that stings at supporters who have allowed their own directors to get away with all manner of things, but I won’t lie to them to make them feel better. I’ll leave that to the directors themselves; they’ve had more practice at it than me anyway.

Whilst Dermot Desmond brings heft and experience to the Celtic board, he is not a sugar daddy.

As a figure with enormous credibility in financial circles – for all the invective Sevco fans throw at him, that remains an unalterable fact – he would be missed in some ways if he was to leave and sell his shares, but we would survive without him.

Anyone who thinks Celtic fans would storm The Daily Record if they uncovered actual evidence of wrong-doing involving this guy is mad. As far as I’m concerned, and as far as every Celtic fan I know is concerned, if some rich man wants to bend the rules to protect his fortune, well he’s taking his chances because the government has unlimited resources and never gets tired of flexing its muscle. You break the rules you deserve what’s coming to you, whoever  you are.

So Sevco fans, do your worst.

Demand that the Scottish hacks dig, those who were literally the last people on Earth to know Craig Whyte wasn’t a billionaire. Get your own intrepid crusading sleuths on it, you know the ones who wasted all that time and trouble – not to mention tax payers money – on digging up stuff on land deals and state aid pish.

That’s all this is about, of course, a perverse fantasy the Peepul cling to that somewhere out there is a magic bullet that if fired will destroy Celtic the way arrogance, greed and utter stupidity destroyed their club. They just won’t accept that we did all this clean, and that we stand on solid foundations.

Anyway, good luck to them in finding something the best investigative journalists in Ireland and in the City of London, not to mention investigators on at least two continents didn’t … the smoking gun which turns our globally respected shareholder into a Bond villain.

Just know that if by some miracle that’s out there, that they should temper their expectations of Celtic Park crumbling to dust the instant the story is published.

Because that’s a fairy-tale they’re thinking about.

That’s a fantasy, and if I were in their shoes I would stop spending so much time embracing those and start living in the real world.

You know, the one where we’re going for seven in a row and with no end in sight.

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