Michael Johnston: hang your head in shame

Discussion in 'Aberdeen' started by Psychosomatic, May 7, 2012.

  1. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    Is this really what we’ve come to in the Scottish game? Can you see why it might be a problem?

    Briefly, here are some reasons that fat people might put forward to support such an immorality:

    Michael Johnston is merely being realistic.
    Michael Johnston is looking out for the best interests of his club.
    Michael Johnston is looking out for the best interests of all SPL clubs.

    Once you allow any of these reasons to pass through your system unchallenged, you’ve fallen straight through the moral trapdoor and will land sharply on top of the ethically wretched Michael Johnston and any other SPL chairmen with such a viciously disfigured worldview. You deserve the company you’ll be keeping.

    "Member clubs are mindful of a sporting integrity aspect….."

    Sporting integrity is not an “aspect” of sport, an optional, structurally dispensable luxury, it’s the be all and end all – otherwise what’s the point?

    The commercial benefits of deliberately throwing a match for £500,000, say, would doubtless outweigh any benefits of adhering to the sporting integrity we may rightly expect (and demand) of our SPL teams.

    And if you’re minded to bleat about this analogy stretching things too far, then you’ve very probably failed to clearly think through and fully understand the underlying implication of Michael Johnston’s words.

    If we momentarily allow for the (slyly manipulative and bullying) threat that other teams in Scotland face a certain financial meltdown should Rangers drop out of the top league and that everything ought to be done, therefore, to stop this from happening, must we also then accept the fact that Rangers will never face the prospect of relegation? If not, why not? What’s the difference?

    If these dire financial predictions are true, it seems reasonable to ask how on earth Scottish football got itself into such a mess that the fate of one club might so heavily impinge on the fate of all the others. And if the fate of these clubs is so heavily reliant on playing Rangers two times a season, then it might also be fair to say that these clubs probably don’t deserve to survive – and I’m entirely comfortable including Aberdeen in this observation.

    Moderately alert observers may be forgiven for wondering, of course, how all of those clubs relegated from the SPL since its inception – and all of those clubs who have never been anywhere near the top league - have managed to survive the triple catastrophe of no Rangers, no Celtic and no TV deal. But that’s by the by.

    There is a terrible scandal surrounding Rangers at the moment, it’s true, but the greater scandal may reveal itself in the abject, supine, undiluted immorality of those SPL chairmen and administrators who may be about to do the unthinkable. This might be a game-changer, indelibly soiling the already diminished reputation of Scottish football.

    (And see those people that you’re crawling to, Mr Johnston? They won’t admire you, not deep down, they’ll merely think that you’re weak. And they’d be right.)
     
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  2. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    And so it continues....

    Step forward Stephen Thompson and Peter Houston, chairman and manager of Dundee Utd, respectively.

    Thompson: We are in a very, very difficult situation and at a crossroads for Scottish football. I understand how all the fans feel and I have great sympathy for them, but I have a legal responsibility to run Dundee United and a legal responsibility as a director of the SPL. We've got to think about our own clubs and about the whole of Scottish football. It is impossible.

    No, it’s really, really not.

    Houston: I think we need to keep Rangers in the SPL…..we need them. If £600,000 was cut off my budget, I would have hardly anything left.

    Tough. Take the hit and deal with it. Besides, having “hardly anything” is still better than having nothing at all.

    Houston: I am just being honest.

    Spare me.

    To see greed and self-interest so brazenly articulated is never pretty, but I begin to wonder if these people actually know what they’re saying; if they’ve thought things through at all.

    I dread to imagine what Stewart Milne is thinking.
     
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  3. rogueleader

    rogueleader suave gringo

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    It really is completely and utterly disgusting. Words just about fail me. Short-sighted and cowardly.
     
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  4. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    I know what you mean, RL. I'm not really sure how many ways it can be said or whether words have any impact, but you're right - it's "completely and utterly disgusting". I feel that I'm listening to people who have simply become detached from all that it means to be decent and are seemingly blind or oblivious to their own self-serving, morally reprehensible bullshit.

    Ah, morality. It suddenly seems like such an old-fashioned word and people seem almost embarrassed to use it, let alone apply a recognisable version of it to their own lives. It's enough to make a priest kick a stained-glass window, for sure.
     
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  5. RAVENBLACK

    RAVENBLACK Well-Known Member

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    It's the main reason why so many have fallen out of love with football.

    Myself included.

    Leave the ****s to it. Step forward Milne and Miller.
     
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  6. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure I've heard one word from Milne in absolutely ages. I must be looking in the wrong places. Maybe he's constantly yacking away in the Press & Journal and the Evening Express and not giving you all any peace. I'd be (momentarily) interested to know exactly where Aberdeen stand on a sparkly new Rangers waltzing straight into the premier league.

    I've fallen out of love with most things in life. It's the future.
     
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  7. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    Just for the historical record:

    Following on from Terry Butcher's comments earlier on in the week about having to keep Rangers in the Premier League, Danny Lennon, the St Mirren manager, came up with the following: “I'm sure Rangers will survive and we need them to be in the SPL. Maybe this is one situation where morally you have to do the wrong thing for the right reasons and keep them in the SPL for the greater good."

    I give up.
     
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  8. RAVENBLACK

    RAVENBLACK Well-Known Member

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    Step forward all the hypocritical fuds.

    I honestly hope Scottish Football (well the SPL anyway) dies.
     
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  9. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    It’s a tempter and I’m certainly not indifferent to such an outcome (talking about the SPL dying). I'd be happy enough with that. And if I try to imagine the surreal concept that football in Scotland suddenly died altogether – no more games, no more teams, no more talking about the sport whatsoever – I’m not sure I’d miss a beat. Cricket, whilst gay, gives me more enjoyment; and chess, whilst gayer, is supreme. That’s more than enough sport to be getting on with. (I class chess as a sport so that it might help keep me fit, as the only cricket I enjoy is on TV.)

    What do you like in the world, ER?


    As you ponder this philosophical flirting, I'll just add to the historical record:

    A hero emerges, at last, in the shape of Hibernian chairman, Rod Petrie. Speaking to Radio Scotland, he said that money should not come into the equation when assessing whether to allow a new company into the Premier League:

    That’s fundamental to us at our club, to make sure the integrity of the game is not called into question and that the sporting integrity of the competition we take part in is maintained at the highest standards. It’s not a question of any sum of money in return for that integrity – integrity is beyond purchase.

    Why is this not obvious to everyone? I love Rod Petrie now and want Hibs to win the Scottish Cup, whereas before I'd been flattened by complete indifference whilst trying to muster some feeling for Hearts.
     
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  10. RAVENBLACK

    RAVENBLACK Well-Known Member

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    There are many things I like in the world Psycho. I'm not that grumpy, honestly.

    Oh and well.said Rod Petrie, my faith is restored.
     
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  11. The Raging Oxter

    The Raging Oxter Well-Known Member

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    It was good to hear Rod Petrie come out with that statement. Sadly, it appears his view is a minority one in a cabal of Chairmen obsessed with self-interest to the extent that their shortsightedness is doing more harm than good to Scottish football.
     
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  12. RAVENBLACK

    RAVENBLACK Well-Known Member

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    I can see even more fans staying away next season as once again the fans are given a raw deal and the officialdom could not give two hoots about us.

    **** 'em.
     
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  13. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    I'm glad to hear it, ER. Good for you. As someone who is permanently (and happily) depressed, it always surprises me how many things I like about the world. It's a bit annoying, actually, and may sometimes undermine any particular misery I'm trying to excacerbate and enjoy.




    Excellent. I couldn’t have said it better myself. (Only joking. I’m just tired of showing people up. *Sigh*)

    You’re quite right on all counts, though – at least to my way of thinking.

    I’ve been following a finely balanced argument about whether Celtic’s top man – I’ve temporarily forgotten his name, sorry – should step up and say something like Petrie said, a declaration of non-negotiable moral intent. It seems that people (generally Celtic fans, obviously) are roughly split down the middle on this, with those against him speaking out fearing (amongst other things) that it would play into the hands of those least able (and simultaneously most hysterical) members of our press who would turn it into a Celtic versus Rangers kind of thing, which, emphatically, it is not.

    I see what they’re saying and can’t quite make my mind up, whilst not being able to get rid of the nagging feeling that now might be exactly the time to speak out and that we shouldn’t allow the (potentially hysterical) reaction of others to cow us towards a mute (and tacit) compliance.

    In fact, sorry, as I was writing that, I made my mind up (at least for the next twenty minutes): he should speak out.

    All of the clubs should, immediately. It would also be kinder to Rangers, come to think of it, as it would allow them to adjust their (hypnotically crazy) plans accordingly, if needs be. And it would let fans see where their clubs stood on such issues, so that they might boycott/threaten/petrol bomb/congratulate them, dependent on their disposition.

    Why should the fans be kept in the dark, after all? It seems amazing.
     
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  14. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    Further attractive updates....

    Lifted straight from RedWeb, the official Aberdeen FC website, the following:

    Aberdeen Football Club has issued an update with regard to the ongoing situation affecting Scottish Football and in particular Rangers Football Club.

    Duncan Fraser Chief Executive said: "Yesterday's announcement that Rangers FC will reform as a New Co brings a degree of clarity to the situation. However there are a number of other investigations ongoing. Like everyone we wish to see them resolved as soon as possible.

    A large numbers of our supporters have made their views and feelings very clear and as a Club I can assure everyone that these are being taken into account. The integrity of sport in general and football in particular must be central to any decision. This issue has our full attention and we will communicate any decisions we take in relation to this situation with our supporters in a transparent way at an appropriate time."


    That's a bit more like it and would suggest that fans are maybe not as impotent in all of this as some whiney little doomsayers - me - had feared.

    Anyway, the way that the Press & Journal ("Dons to vote against Light Blues newco after supporter unrest") and Evening Express ("Victory for Aberdeen FC fans over newco Rangers") trailed this statement made it seem like the club had come out and categorically stated their intention to say "no". This hasn't happened, not yet, but things are certainly looking up.

    It seems debatable that any new club will emerge from the wreckage, however, but that's a different thing altogether. It's going to get very, very messy, that much seems certain.

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch.....

    Stephen Thompson, the Dundee Utd chairman, has somewhat redeemed himself with a firming up of his position and backbone. This happened a wee while back, but I can't face trying to find the relevant quotes. In the "good guy" or "****" stakes, however, he appears to have extricated himself from the latter without actually formally joining the former.
     
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  15. The Raging Oxter

    The Raging Oxter Well-Known Member

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    Of all the supporters groups, Celtic, Hibs and Aberdeen fans are certainly the most vociferous and determined when it comes to the subject of a NewCo being rejected.

    Dundee Utd's Stephen Thompson has been the most garrulous on the subject, with the possible exception of Kilmarnock head honcho, Michael Johnston, who clearly has ambition of being involved at Rangers one day judging by his brown nosing sycophancy of late.

    It's really hard to call how the vote is going to go. How much influence will supporter groups have on the Chairmen of their respective clubs? Will Peter Lawwell even have the bottle to vote no?
     
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  16. DevAdvocate

    DevAdvocate Gigging bassist

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    Stop kicking Rangers while they are down.
     
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  17. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    Hello, Stereo. I hope you’re having a lovely “summer”.

    And quite right, too. The thought of any new company/club waltzing straight into the Premier League is unpardonable and entirely and irrevocably subverts the (already tattered) bedrock of sporting principle.

    And quite how anyone can class this as “punishment” is (now) beyond me. Where is the punishment in being asked to do as all new clubs must do when starting out on their journey in Scottish football? Start from the bottom, try to work your way up……that’s not punishment, that’s an opportunity.

    The punishments, as applied to the dying old club/company, are surely yet to come? Or maybe I got that wrong. (I must admit to being repeatedly confused by the sheer scale of the mess and all the twists and turns.)

    The scale of Michael Johnston’s sycophancy has been nothing shy of incredible, matched only in scope by the depth of his seeming moral bankruptcy and short-sightedness. I’m not really sure why he thinks the way that he thinks, but he may give some people the impression that he is somehow personally compromised. Something similar may also be said of certain members of the Scottish press.

    I don’t really know how Peter Lawwell will vote, obviously, but I’ve no particular confidence in the man or in the morality of Celtic at large, come to think of it. I'm not sure I've ever been given a reason to have any confidence in Peter Lawwell or Celtic, I should say - and will never rule out the destabilising threat of naked greed and/or the aggression of (perceived) self-interest - but will gladly salute them if they do (what I believe is) the right thing. The fans seem to be ahead of the curve in all of this and our chairmen and club representatives need to catch-up quickly. I'll be happily stunned if Stewart Milne ultimately opts for morality over cash. (Although, as has been quite impressively pointed out to the Aberdeen board by representatives of certain Aberdeen fans' groups, the club stand to lose more money if they vote "yes" to a new club in the Premier League - and, conversely, may even be more profitable without one. That sort of thing, never mind morality, usually makes these people sit up and take note.)

    The tension mounts....
     
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  18. The Raging Oxter

    The Raging Oxter Well-Known Member

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    Same to yourself. Looking forward to the Film festival starting next week then it's the fringe and international festivals. Never boring in Edinburgh during the summer months.

    We even had the Olympic torch here yesterday. 6,000 nutters turned up to see it at the castle esplanade. Just to see a flame <laugh>

    Anyway, BBC just reported this:

    The ArabTrust say 100 per cent of Utd fans polled online will cancel satellite subscription if broadcaster pulls out of SPL coverage


    Looks like there's a bit of momentum behind the No to NewCo campaign.
     
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  19. Psychosomatic

    Psychosomatic Well-Known Member

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    I'm not quite sure why anyone would go along to see a flame. It seems like a disastrous life-choice. (I bet you secretly went along and cheered.) I think I caught sight of the fact that this flame had been up in the Shetlands where the locals dutifully pronounced it A Good Thing, inbetween mouthfuls of incest.

    But please don't mention the Olympics here again, okay? I used to quite like watching them up until about the age of thirteen or fourteen, but my interest tailed off sharply until I found myself - and find myself - feeling hollowed out and deeply, traumatically bored at the merest thought of them. I can't bear the build up, I can't bear the news coverage, I can't bear the fact that people seem to be genuinely excited by the prospect of London hosting such an event. It just crushes me.

    On a brighter note, I used to love the film and fringe festivals, whilst attempting to appear mildly disdainful of the main festival itself (which I also fairly loved, right enough, but it seemed more edgy and out there to appear slightly scornful - maybe you do something similar?)

    Mainly, I would enjoy stumping up cash to go and listen to writers and journalists and philosophising types expound on their skills and outlook for a couple of hours. (Not strictly relevant, but I remember my eldest sister once had to pick up Noam Chomsky from Edinburgh airport and this appeared to make both her and my mother all giddy. I didn&#8217;t know who he was at the time, so couldn&#8217;t really assess the appropriateness of their admirations. Now that I&#8217;m fully up to speed with his identity, work and hairstyle, however, I can safely say that their admirations were almost wholly misplaced. But still.)

    Good news about the ArabTrust and I think you&#8217;re probably right &#8211; there is a some useful momentum gathering. I watched the twists and turns yesterday with something approaching outright disbelief and then later watched something from STV in which a Rangers blogger stated that the club had already been punished enough and that the sanctions had to stop. I try to avoid despair in such circumstances, but when will these people ever learn? How do they not see? Something has gone terribly wrong in their heads. I also heard the old &#8220;too big to fail&#8221; argument put forward. Given what had just happened, this argument may be generously classed as being somewhat out of date. It&#8217;s a terrible shame that the more moderate, more ethically-aware Rangers fans have their voices drowned out by those screechingly illiterate cries of entitlement and victimhood. Gobsmacking.
     
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  20. DevAdvocate

    DevAdvocate Gigging bassist

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    I accidentally got caught up in flame frenzy last week in Glasgow, I was late going home and as I walked up Buchanan Street the streets were lined with people going berserk as the torch passed by. Cameras and phones were flashing everywhere and people were clambering atop objects to get a clearer view of some nonentity, metaphorically baring his arse in public to promote an event which is no more than another massive fundraiser to rebuild London...again.

    The whole of Britain is buying into this charade that we are all involved, by God they'e even given us Scots some Women's football matches for some bizarre reason, we should duly tug our collective forelocks and be grateful for the meagre scraps tossed to us from the table which gets bigger every passing year.

    I've always said that 80% of the Great British public are imbeciles, this proves it, we are getting the Joan Collins special and some people cannot even see it.
     
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