Crazed Ibrox Fan Forum Blames The Unseen Celtic Hand For The Dundee Postponements.

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The moment where you realise the fine line Aaron Sorkin intends to make his characters walk in the brilliant film A Few Good Men comes when Tom Cruise’s defence lawyer is being lectured by his co-counsel to check his conscience. “Do you believe their story?” is the question he is asked.

It’s the wrong question, utilising the wrong word. It is why Jo Galloway, who asks it, is distrusted by Cruise’s Daniel Caffey and his bagman Sam Weinberg, who recognise that she’s intelligent but not sharp enough to be a trial lawyer.

“It doesn’t matter what I believe,” he shouts, “It only matters what I can prove! So don’t tell me what I know and don’t know … I know the law!”

And, of course, he is a quite superb lawyer as he will ably demonstrate in the film. He is also correct in what he’s saying, because what you know and what you can prove are two very different things and, in the courtroom, only one of them matters a damn.

Outside of the law, facts matter less and less. Outside the courtroom, there are places where it doesn’t even matter whether what you believe has a single actual fact to back it up. If you look at political discourse, for example, and especially in the States, people believe the most absurd fantasies, stuff that is utterly divorced from reality.

Let’s split this into three words then; what you “know”, what you “believe” and what you can “prove.” The word “know” is the most difficult one to define. It’s separate from “believe” because that’s a weak word, that’s a word which doesn’t require anything to back it up except an irrational opinion about something.

To “know” something is to have more than just hearsay to back it up. “Knowing” suggests that there is, at the very least, circumstantial evidence, something you’ve weighed up in your mind enough of to tip the balance between merely “believing” something and being convinced of it.

Proof is different. That’s a much higher standard. People have been convicted on circumstantial evidence, but it’s incredibly difficult and there has to be a lot of it. Let’s be honest; when it comes to corruption in Scottish football, we have enough of it to fill six Olympic sized swimming pools. But you know what? We’ve also got hard evidence – the stuff of proof – as well.

Later on, I’m going to do a piece on the big issue of the month so far; VAR and the continuing disaster that it represents in Scottish football. There were two major developments in that story this week, one indirectly related to us and one related indirectly to us … ponder those words if you like, but I’ll explain them anyway; one happened in Scotland, the other in Turkey. Both of them are relevant to the debate we’re having here, but in different ways.

And the theme of this article – which is about those three words – comes to bear in the one about officials as well, as I’ll explain when I get to it.

So let’s talk about knowing and proving before I get to the utter insanity of the Ibrox fan forums and their latest “theory”, this latest thing they “believe”.

Let’s seperate them from us once and for all, by looking at the things we know, and the things that we can prove.

Circumstantial evidence that corruption is rife in Scottish football is everywhere.

This week, even amidst everything else that rages around us, we learned that James Tavernier is on the brink of breaking a record for goals from the penalty spot in a single season; he’s one behind a record held by Cristiano Ronaldo.

If the Ibrox club gets and scores five more this season they will break the record set by Barcelona in season 2015/16.

If you’ve listened to Alan Morrison, of Celtic By Numbers, you’ll recognise that as one of the seasons for which their club is under investigation … for bribing referees.

We have John Beaton, patron of an Ibrox fan bar running the show against us at the weekend, when everyone knows this and when it would rule him out across much of Europe. I wrote earlier in the week about his performance in that game and those mind-bending stats from the first half which set the whole tone of the game that was to follow.

We have a situation with officiating that is so bad that clubs openly joke about it on their Twitter feeds when they come up against them. We have Robertson and Beaton handed games against us within weeks of our manager making negative remarks about their competence; the first just before our manager was disciplined for those remarks and the second just afterwards.

It stinks, obviously, and especially in light of Collum’s near total disappearance from matches which involve the Ibrox club. They can get away with anything; they weren’t sanctioned for the comments which saw Collum vanish from view. Hibs, on the other hand, are being investigated for their “penalty” joke on social media.

But this isn’t just about Us and Them, this affects every club and I’m not just talking about when they play Us or Them. Aberdeen’s statement of this week was incredible, and it concerned a goal scored in a game between their team and Livingston; the VAR officials chopped it off without even having a good reason because the technology wasn’t working. That’s the definition of corrupt. They had no right to do that, and no basis on which to change the ref’s decision.

VAR has done exactly what I said it would do; it has exposed how bad things are in the game here. But it’s also done what people warned me that it would do; it has been weaponised against us and the selective use of it has caused us huge problems.

It’s football governance that is the real joke.

I would be here all day if I was to go through every bit of the circumstantial evidence; I can only commend, again, Alan Morrison’s outstanding research on the “pattern of assistance” and on the sterling stuff done elsewhere laying out the scale of this problem, and those who have gone into the psychological and cultural roots of these issues.

What about actual proof? Hard evidence?

We have Hugh Dallas, the sectarian bigot who left his job as head of referees after sending a disgusting anti-Catholic email. His son, of course, is a Grade One ref and one of our two “full time VAR” officials. He is at the centre of a lot of these controversies.

We have the case of Jim Farry, an SFA President who we removed from that post because he deliberately withheld the registration of Jorge Cadete. We should have got his head of registrations Sandy Bryson at the same time, because he clearly played a part in that, and he was to play a part in the EBT scandal, which saw us lose titles and trophies and a lot of money because the SFA allegedly didn’t know that Rangers was concealing key contract information … although the SFA’s own President, Campbell Ogilvie, had signed the first EBT’s and knew they hadn’t been disclosed.

We had the corruption that was the Lord Nimmo Smith inquiry, which came with its own side letter. Later on, a crucial element of the EBT scandal, involving undeclared tax payables due in the “discounted options scheme” saw another disciplinary case opened against an Ibrox club but the SFA, who knew what had happened and had all the facts and evidence to hand, failed to take that one to the Court of Arbitration for Sport because of “costs.”

There aren’t many clubs who can point to scandals involving a head of referees and two national association Presidents, and who were denied justice for one of those scandals under two separate administrations. Accuse of us of pushing conspiracy theories as you will; that’s not a conspiracy theory.

Those things definitively prove that there has been a pro-Ibrox agenda at the SFA for a long, long time. This is to say nothing of Gordon Smith’s hiring after he’d contributed a book chapter on how anti-Rangers the association was; the failure to tackle sectarianism and anti-Irish racism there going back to before many of us were born; the numerous officials who have gone on the “Sash-Bash” circuit and the others who have openly admitted what their allegiances were and boasted about matches they have influenced … I could go on.

I’ve presented here some of what we “know” and some of what we can “prove.”

Here’s my question; show me a single thing, even one, which backs up the idea that there is some vast pro-Celtic conspiracy at the centre of Scottish football. Show me something that isn’t just the demented “belief” of these crazy Ibrox fan forums.

Now I’m going to show you what these people “believe”, and how different it is.

Which brings me, actually, to last night’s incredible bizarro theory from those forums; that Celtic and Dundee are working together on the “abandoned game” to disenfranchise the club pretending to be Rangers, playing out of the dead club’s stadium and wearing the dead club’s outfit.

Even on a surface level, this is pure moon-howling.

It makes no sense whatsoever, no matter which way you dress it up.

Why would we do it?

It doesn’t benefit us or Dundee one bit to have that game abandoned twice and then played at a neutral venue. It stands to reason that Dundee have a better chance on their own home pitch in front of their own fans … Celtic even lent them some of their bloody pitch covers to get this game played.

This is absolutely deranged.

Check this out, this defies belief, even over there, even by their standards.

The things some of these people believe in, the ideas they cling to, the lies they embrace, the things they think they know … we would regard it as the demented ranting of maniacs unique only to this club if we didn’t see this sort of stuff now spreading across the far right.

I’ve talked about the way some of their fans have the Trumpian mindset; who can read this stuff and not hear faint echoes of the 2020 election lie which sparked the 6 January insurrection?

What makes these people impervious to reason and sanity and logic is not even that they don’t require evidence but they are perfectly willing to ignore evidence which contradicts these mad ideas when that stuff is presented to them.

Here’s another one of them, on the same subject …

These people think that we are as mad as they are; that’s a red flag in and of itself of course. When you can’t separate fact from fiction and fantasy from reality you will tend to look at your fellow man as being just as crazy … except even at our worst we’re dealing with what we “know” rather than what we can prove.

We have at least one foot in the real world, and if we sometimes see patterns which aren’t there that’s because there is just so much circumstantial evidence for what we know, and so many hard facts underpinning it, that it is easy to get confused.

I can’t even imagine what it takes to come up with a theory that the Unseen Fenian Hand can influence the weather or that we can operate Dundee as if by remote control to cancel two games against them or that it’s our board telling the SPFL not to play the games when, in fact, it suits us better if the game is played with Dundee having the advantage of their own pitch, in front of their home crowd.

I stopped looking for logic and sanity in these Peepul a long time ago, but their ability to go off the deep end and seem utterly out of their minds still astounds me.

This might be the best example I’ve ever seen of people so caught up in their hate and paranoia that they can’t see straight … even the MAGA wing of The Republican Party would have nothing to do with craziness like this.

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  • John L says:

    As much as I love reading your articles on the deranged across the city, I hate our clubs lack of activity when it comes to the sfa, referring, and the poison that is var.
    We must be the only club that needs to score 6 goals in order to get 3 .
    We have clubs like Aberdeen, Hibs and even Motherwell challenge decisions, because as you said, it is affecting every club, if we would have asked about Kyogo being manhandled by 2 scumbags in their penalty area and every other bad incident since, I believe that we would not be in this situation.
    Unlike statement FC , we are pussys, quite frankly we deserve every thing we get, cause for years, we have done F all about it.


  • John mcghee says:

    Good read james but we all know what like they cheats are they blame everyone else when the shite is at there door.see when i read about the cheating and the EBT SIDELETTERS and they corrupt scumbags at hampden sfa.spfl let them with anything they are involved in and our cowards on the celtic board say noing and kid on they like doing everything private that gets me thinking that our shower of shite on the celtic board are involved aswell thats why they stay silent on our players getting attacked at cheating liebrox and bottles coins lighters golf balls getting tossed at them plus our coaches and they do nothing about it.honestly i cant wait for they scumbags at paradise to be removed they aee dirty lowlife scumbag cowards and if we lose this title through the officials i hope the fans turn on they rats lawwells Nicholson and dont miss them for what they have let go since 2012 especially that fat bastard p.lawwell i hate the guy now because he let that cheating mob carry on..HH

    • RefMartin says:

      With every passing opportunity our board misses, the idea that the league is a fix (wwe style) and our lot are in on it gets harder and harder to dismiss.

      • Matt says:

        So we kinda new this for years. Now, thanks to the brilliant Alan Morrison we have some facts to prove/back up our position. What do we do now? What’s the next move, what can we do?

        • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

          What do we do now ? – What’s the next move ?

          With Lawwell and Lord Lucan-Nicholson in charge it’ll be a big, big, big NOTHING Matt !

  • John mcghee says:

    Sorry for miss spelling and missing words its this phone.

  • john mc guire says:


    could the klan no have played before the Celtic game or did the s.f.a. and the klan have a meeting to say no that the klan didnt want to risk it just in case .

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Thing is that they accuse everybody of bein exactly what they are theirselves. The ‘parsnoia’ card, with the help of their media, was always a very useful tool against us whenever bias was bein called out. Actually sent a letter intae the ‘alternative view’ a long time ago about this. Said it at the time that, ‘because it’s extremely difficult tae PROVE an officials biased (corrupt), unless he actually came out and told someone, disnae mean it’s no happenin’. And ah think it’s every bit as relevant today.

  • Eldraco says:

    Great article and solid food for thought. Tell me does the pattern of assistance incl the celtic board staying mute on just about every point raised by the blog and its contributers?. Sure as hell looks like it.

  • Onthe says:

    And I thought it was the referee in full view of the Sky cameras who cancelled the Dundee Huns game

  • Johnny Green says:

    C’mon James, you know as well as I do that every Celtic supporter in Tayside has been performing rain dances for the last couple of weeks, it’s not the unseen fenian hand that they should be worried about, it’s those darned twinkle toed fenian feet, 🙂

  • DixieD says:

    But its already been widely reported that both clubs didn’t want to play the game on the first available Wednesday (prior to the derby) as they both had important games the following weekend and wanted a free week prior to those games. So the evidence is that it was as much therangers fault the game didn’t take place as it is Dundee’s or the weather! But don’t let the fact get in the way of a good conspiracy!

  • James Archibald says:

    ask John Fulton about referring against them apparently gave hearts or didn’t give them a penalty against hearts carreer finished HH

  • Jimbhoy says:

    Ogilvie held the rangers shares whilst working at Hearts, I know 2 cheeks of the same @rse but it was against rules.

    Let’s see if the currants get an extra home game in the split, that would add to your debate James. Cheating at the core.

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