Apart from lprent and Mike Smith, I am (I believe) the longest serving current Standard author, and by some margin the most published. I have some idea how the place works. Which is one of the reasons why I find external commentary on The Standard so utterly bizarre.
Right wingers (the Slaters and Farrars) like to say we’re run by the Labour Party – they know it isn’t true but it’s part of their relentless political attack. Disappointingly, some left wingers (Bradbury and O’Dea at TDB) spread the same lie – and try to spin the posts here in terms of their own hatred for Labour (and apparently for us). Some other political obsessives, who really should know better (Edwards, George) – do the same kind of factional entrail reading as part of the great game.
Lies, hatred or over-thinking – collectively it’s all bollocks, the whole lot.
The truth is really simple. The Standard is a bunch of people who write on the same blog. There is no central organisation, there often isn’t agreement, there is no control from Labour (the way we have disagreed on, disagreed with, and attacked various Labour leaders should be proof enough of that). Almost every current author, including myself, is someone who started out commenting on the site, and gravitated up to writing. We are the loosest possible collective, a group of lefties who care, and write, and respect each other’s opinions even when we disagree. I’m amazed that the whole thing works as well as it does. The fact that it does is largely because of the contributions of the other half of the community, the very diverse and committed group of readers / commenters that has built up over the years.
That’s all there is behind the curtain. And anyone trying to read The Standard tea leaves to tell you something about Labour is selling you an agenda.
Anthony / r0b