Guido Fawkes, aka Paul Staines, likes to think of himself as the scourge of Westminster; his blog is replete with examples of villainous or shameful behaviour by members of what Staines sees as the inherently corrupt members of Britain’s political classes. Today, however, Staines himself has become the story; the Independent‘s Pandora diary reports that last week Staines found himself up in a magistrates’ court on drink-driving charges. It appears that Staines had over-indulged at a reception hosted by the free-market think tank the Adam Smith Institute, where, he says, “The booze is usually pretty good.”
Staines is no stranger to the sauce, as any visitor to his blog will soon learn. But Guido Fawkes, whose tireless cynicism and fierce plague-on-all-your-houses libertarian independence used to make his site one of the most entertaining and essential reads in the British political blogosphere, has in recent months become little more than an attack dog for the Tories, and has become far less interesting as a result. Might all that Margaux have dulled Guido’s instincts? Meanwhile, one of Guido’s main rivals for the most-read British political blog, politicalbetting.com, goes from strength to strength.
Funnily enough, as I write not a single commenter at Guido’s site has brought up the Independent story; this is not a group usually renowned for its reticence. It may simply tell us something about the lack of crossover between the Independent‘s readership and the increasingly partisan Guido Fawkes’s constituency.