Sun lied about Gordon Brown 4 times in 4 months


11:20 am - January 30th 2013

by Tim Fenton    


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Having to withdraw allegations – more prosaically publish a “correction” or “clarification” – is an occupational hazard for newspapers.

But to have to back down four times in four months suggests an attack campaign that has gone seriously wrong.

No prizes for guessing that the rag in question is the Sun, and its target has been Gordon Brown.

1) Led last September by the loathsome Toby Young – whose services the paper has wisely dispensed with in the meantime – talking of “Toffs who play at being comrades”. Tobes managed not to mention that Brown’s fees for his speaking engagements do not go into his own pocket, but help fund the charitable work done by him and wife Sarah.

2) Four days after the clarification, there was another issued over an article last July that managed not to mention that Brown’s staff expenses also did not go into his own pocket. This time, the Sun was additionally persuaded to tell its readers that the former PM had renounced the Prime Ministerial pension to which he is entitled.

3) this month brought yet another “clarification, admitting that Brown did not claim accommodation expenses when visiting London on parliamentary business. This time, there was the addition of a brass neck component, as they blamed the Tories. So that’s an admission of using a partisan single source for news items, then.

4) And it wasn’t over, even then: last week brought the fourth “clarification, over the Sun’s story alleging that Brown’s press conference at the UN was cancelled because only one reporter turned up.

It was actually canned as he was delayed attending another meeting which was paying tribute to Aung San Suu Kyi. That’s another story they didn’t bother checking out before publishing.

On top of all that, there is the pretence they are actually bothered about getting the right story before putting the boot in: “Our journalists strive for accuracy but on occasion we make mistakes”. That’s one fresh and steaming pile of bullshit for you.

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About the author
Tim is a regular contributor to Liberal Conspiracy. He blogs more frequently at Zelo Street
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Reader comments


Good work Tim. All PCC complaints with a successful outcome are on their website. Gordon also successfully took cases against the Daily Telegraph (and I think the Time).

But good of you to draw attention to it.

Tell me…how much is Brown getting out of the public purse for being an MP whilst he does (not) turn up for parliament?

Very good work. There is no doubt that The Sun working with Cameron, Clegg and Gus O’Donnell participated in the coup that brought this Coalition to power. No sooner had Clegg denounced Brown as `the squatter in No.10′ than it was their front page headline as if it had already been set up to run. This was all part of justifying the unconstitutional approach of the Lib Dems to the Tories no doubt worked out with Cameron in advance of the election to form a Coalition when it is normal for the sitting prime minister to be given the opportunity to try first. Gus O Donnell was of course the man who insisted that another election would not be allowed.

Given the nature of the accusations, Brown would appear to have a strong libel case. Heavy damages may concentrate minds more than have been.

Still, we needn’t feel too much sympathy for Brown: he’s no novice himself.

Perhaps of more interest, why is the Sun gunning for him in this manner?

Gordon Brown lied to the Public on so many other occasions I am sure a little tabloid rubbish doesn’t make much difference.

Take the Labour tinted glasses of guys. Politicians are all the same. If their mouth is moving, they are usually lying, or at least misleading you.

@ Freeman

It is almost a truism that “all politicians” lie. It is part of their trade. It is part of a journalists trade to expose those lies. But when they make up stories themselves they really leave themselves open to the same cries of “hypocrisy” that they like to shout at everyone else. And it does no favours to defenders of the “free press” if “newspapers” (definition?) continue to abuse their position like this.

OK, so Gordon Brown doesn’t deny that only one journalist attended his cancelled press conference.

That one journalist didn’t get the information that it had been cancelled is a likely reason. But how did all the other journalists who didn’t turn up get the information that the conference was cancelled?

I haven’t heard one jot from journalists, even those who are on GB’s side, saying that they got the news about the cancellation.

Saying that the meeting was cancelled is true fact. But when the cancellation notice was sent out to a select few only minutes before the start, then the excuse starts to wear a bit thin.

At such short notice it’s amazing that everyone heard and didn’t turn up, even those who would have turned up early in order to get a good position or set up their camera equipment.

And the bit about that money not going to GB personally. Yes, GB does not get a cheque paid to him personally to put into his personal bank account – but he still gets the money to use as his wishes as he is in control of the organisation.

Despite NotW, Levenson and the phone hacking scandal I am sure that Mr Murdoch’s power and influence still plays a significant role in British politics. The Tories are owned by him and New Labour would like to be, the Lib Dems are largely irrelevant and have to be grateful for scraps as befits their position as the Tory cur.
(Collective noun: A cowardice of curs?)

10. Chaise Guevara

@ 7 SadButMadLad

Whether or not more than one journo intended to turn up is irrelevant to whether the paper lied by saying that was why it was cancelled. I’m at a loss to understand why you think GB has to make excuses for it.

The Sun lies about everything. It is the what it does. As a propaganda sheet for the fascist right wing.

It’s proprietor should be hanging from a lampost for the numerous crimes its owner has comitted. But he is a right wing conservative. And in The banana republic of England its ok if you are a conservative.

Lying, blackmailing, fraud, banking theft, antisemitism are all ok as long as you are a conservative.

The tories are owned by Murdoch. Boris , Gove, and Hunt are all his little puppets.

Boris met with him recently, as did Osbourne. And as we now know Hunts culture department was leaking secret information to him . We can only imagine how much police information is being passed on by Boris in relation to the Met.

But this is Banana tory Britain. So crime pays if you are a rich tory.

13. Matthew Blott

Wow, this story is incredible – it’s managed to extract a modicum of sympathy from me for the self proclaimed world saviour.

Didn’t Brown lie to Leveson about his dealings with Murdoch?

Mordork always backs a party leader he feels will benefit his empire the most.
Brown did not fit this bill so Mordork switched to Camoron after Blair.
It may have something to do with Brown’s background. He is not one of the current crop of old school tie types.
He ditched Major for Blair when he saw how the wind was blowing.

Gordon Brown has been constantly vilified. People mistake this for fair criticism. He is not perfect, but show me a politician that is. But he certainly is NOT the pantomime villain the Scum and other Tory press have made him out to be.

And Brown did not lie to Leveson.

14 No, that was Cameron who lied to the family of Millie Dowler, when he put on his High tory bullshit routine about his sympathies and how he wanted to do something. Then within 0.00001 second of the report being published he dopped to his knees in front of Murdoch.

They should have known he was a false as as they come. Anyone who usues his dying son as an electoral prop has no decency inside him.

17. Shatterface

They should have known he was a false as as they come. Anyone who usues his dying son as an electoral prop has no decency inside him.

Typically vile comment.

19. Cape and Capability

[deleted]

20. Cape and Capability

[deleted]

17 But quite true. Cameron paraded his dying son as an electoral prop to con people into thinking he loved the NHS.

I’m surprised he didn’t stick his son on his windmill he stuck on the side of his house kill 2 birds with one stone.

And let us not forget when Brown lost his child, the tory hate media put out the wispers that it was a conspiracy to garner sympathy. The tory establishment are the true vile people. However they try to hide it with their cut class posh accents.


And the right accuses BROWN of using his family as a prop! Show me one Guardian article that ever treated Elwin Cameron the way Tim Montgomerie treated Fraser Brown!”
Good point but the shatters of the world won’t defend Brown on this matter. Their hate for Labour is too deep.
No vile comment coming montys way.

@21 @22

How very true.

This simply confirms what most of us knew already. For all his faults (of which there were several), Gordon Brown was far too honest and straightforward a person and politician to play at the Digger’s level. Such knowledge can only be to his credit as a human being, even if the rest of us have to pick up the pieces.

(See also : Jimmy Carter)

Brown is hardly in a position to complain, is he?

Remember him lying to the ‘bigoted woman’ saying that “our deficit reduction plan will cu the debt in half in four years” whereas it would, in fact have doubled the debt (on the Treasury’s own figures)?

Brown was hardly a truthful politician.


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