We are of course referring to the controversy over the airbrushing and touching up of pictures of politicians. LOL got into mechanical schtuck over implying that a certain picture - paid for by the taxpayer we believe - had been retouched. This was in the course of a story about how Rowen's Lib Dems ruining Rochdale Council had collectively failed to vote to save kids by reducing speed limits.
The picture certainly looked as if it had digitally manipulated. A turd had been polished. Or at least rolled in a little glitter. Eyes were shiny, tales were bushy, red-eye appeared deliberate, but ruddy and crinkled of complexion was out the door for fashionably pale.
The overall effect was of a wrong 'un - "a muppet dressed as glam". Ruddy complexion victim PR Paul Rowen had apparently used taxpayers' money to create a shiny picture. All lit up. And looking, well, airbrushed or retouched or digitally manipulated.
Fair enough. Why wouldn't a warty frog in the public eye want to look his handsome prince best? Except if it went too far it wouldn't really be authentic. But there's Lib Dems for you.
Trouble was PR Paul Rowen MP - who has been fussing over the dishonest and misleading and politically plain wrong airbrushing and retouching practices of the fashion/PR industry was as sore as raging acne to be found out as a preening hypocrite. Over to PR Paul:
Anyway, that's the official line. But this inveterate organ grinder, or his then head monkey Dave Hennigan, or their paid and owned under-monkey Malcolm Porn-O, organised a "take down" by which our post including an apparently publically funded PR shot of a supposedly accountable MP was taken down - by Blogger - for carrying that very picture. Because the complainer claimed image was supposedly copyrighted.
The way it works is a blogger can then choose whether to appeal the decision - which is mechanical, they complain it gets taken down without proof - or simply remove the offensive material. In this case smug PR Paul Rowen MP's smug visage.
Since then PR Paul Rowen MP's apparent waste of taxpayer's money - he is well into his second million pounds of salary and claims - and his alleged hypocrisy somehow came to the attention of Mirror sleuth Kevin Maguire, a LOL reader.
And in response PR Paul has shown that even without the embarrassing sacked and cracked smearologist Dave Hennigan he is capable of idiocy. Rochdale row just too ridiculous was the headline:
After Lib MP Paul Rowen threatened to sue Lab rival Simon Danczuk for calling him “bananas”, we now have Glamour-Gate.
Danczuk claims an online photo of the rival frontbencher was airbrushed to smooth his appeal.
That would, if true, be naughty because the MP’s condemned glossy mags for touching up models’ photos.
But Rowen, 54, denies a makeover and is affronted: “I’m a northern lad and what you see is what you get.”
Rowen also released a rebutting press release. This variously claimed that his Labour rival Simon Danczuk - already ahead on name recognition and perceived getting things done - had issued a press release. That was completely untrue. Some might say yet another Lib Dem lie. More importantly PR Paul stated categorically that the picture was copyright to Porn-O's organ Rochdale Online.
An assertion that the latter - though paid by the taxpayer as part of PR Paul's PR effort - rather derailed by taking that bit out of their own story. So was it true or not? The picture certainly did not carry the usual RO copyright notice. LOL believe that although it was taken by Porn-O at his Porn-cave in Castleton this was a taxpayer funded shot for free uncredited use.
Finally and perhaps most alarmingly of all, given the likely scrutiny for his claims, PR Paul Rowen categorically denied that there had been any digital manipulation from digital organ tsar Malcolm Porn-O. Even the most basic test of this assertion - a simple enlargement plus inspection with naked eye - prove this claim, like so many emanating from the Rochdale Lib Dems Drake Street gang HQ, to be 100% untrue.
Clearly the picture LOL have sliced and diced for this post cannot be the completely un- digitally manipulated one that Paul Rowen has been referring to in his frankly stupid rebuttal of the turd polishing claims.
Rochdale Libdemology. What you see AIN'T what you get. Last word to Simon Danczuk, Labour's Prospective MP for Rochdale, speaking to Maguire who thinks they should be selling tickets for the spatathon:
“The old picture of Paul Rowen does a great job of keeping my youngest child away from the fireplace.”
Here's one Rowen posed for earlier. Before he piled on the Cyril Smith-esque poundage. Hat tip: UK Gay News. Actually the hair looks woolly even with the naked eye. But the complexion is disarmingly authentic. Before the man's million pounds spree on the tax. Including salaries, mortgage, party political screws and general allowances.