'Oh, so that's who Richard Morris is..." Lord Hattersley on The Daily Politics

'An influential activist' - The Guardian

'Iain Dale, without the self loathing' - Matthew Fox in The New Statesman

You are a tinker...' - Tim Farron

Friday 27 May 2011

Olly Grender vs. Mark Pack FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT

Oh alright then. Not really. In fact anyone following both their twitter feeds over the last few days will have been delighted as they tag team Guido and Harry Cole into knots, half nelsons, spine crushers and full on body slams. It's been a delight watching Guido work himself into a state of near spontaneous combustion as they take it in turns to gently point out the error of his ways...Take a look at the comments section on this post for example. Brilliant

However, to justify the sensationalist headline I have appended to this post, Olly and Mark have in recent days been doling out sage advice that I have been merrily nodding along to thinking 'ah yes, very good' - and then it struck me that in fact they are saying the complete opposite to each other. So who's right?

In the blue corner I give you Mark's top piece on how to deal with a media crisis that he blogged earlier this week. . In it one piece of stand out advice is the contrast between the actions of David Laws and Chris Huhne in the eye of the media storm. David fronted up immediately and came out well. Chris avoided the media, left a vacuum, and came out badly. Marks advice: if you're facing questions get out there and go on the front foot.

In the red corner we have Olly's piece praising Michael Moore. She cites an occasion when Michael was being pursued by the press and responded by doing nothing - on the basis the story wasn't true. And as it wasn't true, the press got nowhere, and the story died.

So David Laws and Michael Moore both did the opposite thing, yet each lanced the story. So which route is correct?

Well, I guess the route you go down rather depends on whether the story the press is chasing is actually true. David Laws knew there was an issue, put his hand up immediately and lanced the boil. Michael Moore knew the accusation was nonsense so ignored the story rather than give it legs.

Which brings us to Chris H. Chris says the speeding tale is not true. Therefore it has no legs. Therefore ignore it and it will die. Which is the right strategy - so long as it really doesn't have legs. For as we all know it isn't the original misdeed that gets you (David Laws will return); it's the cover up.

Chris is a fine Sec of State doing an excellent job. I truly hope the denial route he has gone down is the right one.


  1. So that'll be going straight into the Golden Dozen this week, then:-).

    I think the most important thing to remember in dealing with the media is common sense and that is one thing that Dr Pack and Ms Grender both have in copious amounts.

  2. Thanks Caron! Yes its all in the title isn't it? next week I'm thinking about claiming an exclusive interview with Ryan Giggs but when you click on the link you'll find a story debating the merits of STV vs AV. How everyone will laugh!!!