Speaking of 2008, I'm reminded again of 'Refsgate', which I've written about on here before and in 'Clash of the Agnivores'. A couple of 'honest mistakes' went Celtic's way and suddenly it was a big conspiracy. Still smarting over Celtic winning the league in May, when, according to our Fourth Estate, the 2007-2008 season should have been extended into August, the agnivores were determined to fight Rangers' corner and do anything to stop Celtic winning again. After decades of calling Celtic supporters paranoid they were suddenly filled with the same paranoia themselves.
It's difficult, however, to explain away last Sunday's decision as an 'honest mistake'. Some folk are suggesting now that it was 'ball to hand' but anyone that's seen the incident knows that's rubbish. Josh Meekings's hand was actually thrown out to stop the ball going into the net. His own reaction showed that he knew it as well. It can be argued that Meekings acted instinctively in throwing his hand out but, then, so is punching somebody that has just elbowed you in the side of the head. Both instinctive actions merit a red card. The officials were in perfect positions to see what happened, so they can't pretend otherwise. It was cheating, pure and simple.
Yesterday FIFA vice president, Jim Boyce, spoke exclusively to Keith Jackson about the retrospective ban on Meekings. I find it difficult to believe that Boyce contacted the Daily Record, so, obviously, Jackson was out to cause mischief. 'Look, Mr Boyce, look at the bother those taigs are causing, Mr Boyce, it's not fair, Mr Boyce, you need to do something, Mr Boyce.' Unfortunately, Boyce didn't just condemn the decision to suspend Meekings; he had more to say than that. Ominously, Boyce demanded that the SFA reversed its decision 'before the matter is taken out of their hands.' He also warned against defending the decision by claiming that none of the officials had seen the incident. Obviously Boyce believes that they did!
One of Boyce's other comments is interesting. He says, "I’d like to think the people in charge of that game were honest people who made an honest mistake." That sounds as if he's not too sure about it. Vincent Lunny believes that Meekings doesn't have a hope in hell of having his ban overturned so will Boyce make good on his threat to take things out off the SFA's hands? To justify such a move an investigation would probably need to be carried out. What would this kind of enquiry uncover? I think Lunny is wrong; the SFA will overturn Meekings's ban. The last thing they want is anybody exposing their dealings to the cold light of day.
Rather ridiculously, McMurdo claims on his blog that Meekings's ban shows that the SFA is now under the control of Celtic! This is a recurring theme on his blog and seems an attractive belief for The Peeppul to hold onto, making all their troubles somebody else's fault. You have to ask, though, what possible benefit to Celtic is the suspension of Meekings from the final? Why would Celtic want such a thing? Presumably, The Peeppul think that Celtic is just as petty and vindictive as they are!
Many of The Peeppul are on standby with the excuse that Lawwell is running the show if Honest Dave is to be deemed not fit and proper. They constantly greet that nobody 'protected' them from Whyte or Green, but it is easy to imagine what would have happened if the SFA had banned either of these individuals. Peter Lawwell would have been blamed for trying to 'kill Rangers'. And now we've come full-circle and another player has entered the game. A convicted criminal wants to be chairman of Bisto FC and many of The Peeppul are clamouring for it to happen. But the evil Lawwell is lurking in the background, ready to stop the mighty hero riding in from the Veldt to save Scottish football.
Bomber Brown is calling for the SFA to pass Honest Dave, because Bisto FC needs his money! I think if I was one of The Peeppul (God forbid!) I'd be concerned about the fact that King hasn't put a penny into the club yet. Does he actually have the money he claims to have? And if he does eventually invest, I think I'd want to know where the cash came from. He is allegedly linked to all manner of undesirable characters in South Africa. But that doesn't matter; all that matters is, as Bomber puts it, "Rangers are a massive club, the biggest in Scotland. They need Premiership football. They have been out of the top division for too long." Well, that settles it...where's that rubber stamp?
Back to McMurdo and he's extolling the virtues of UKIP over the 'globalist' and 'socialist' SNP. During the referendum he was warning of the dangers of narrow nationalism and speaking of world stages and the like. Now it seems he wants nationalism in the shape of UKIP and an end to having to deal with Johnny Foreigner. Oh, and the SNP is anti-monarchist, apparently; and that's meant to be a bad thing? He's also decided to rewrite history, as well as predicting the future.
"The Act of Union was designed to be an end to petty tribalism and vacuous nationalism that divided us and made us weak," claims McMurdo. Was it hell! It was simply a way for the English elite to get something it had always wanted: control over Scotland. And nobody in Scotland went into the Union as some great, moral act of principle; if they had then they wouldn't have had to be bribed, would they? As usual, McMurdo lives in his own, wee world. As for the future, he's going on again about Scotland's 'destiny' as part of the Union. If there is such a thing as 'destiny' then it means it's going to happen no matter what; so what the hell is he greeting about? They really are strange people, The Peeppul!
"Don't worry, Sooper, wull get ye back in somehow. Wae aw know how much ye did fur the cause. If yer team hidnae been so shite then thurd've been mair season tickets selt an' the Real Raynjurz Men widnae've stood a chance. Wae aw know you dun yer bit!"