Ignorance is Bliss
- 03 May 2012
As I write this I am still struggling to fully comprehend and come to terms with the distressing news that broke this afternoon. HM Revenue & Customs earlier revealed their intention to oppose Charles Green’s CVA and force The Rangers Football Club plc into liquidation. Obviously this news was met with the usual explosion of delight and exuberance from fans of certain clubs, not to mention various journalists who I am sure need no introduction. There is however a rather phony and ill-informed claim circulating the glorious online world of social networking sites and fans’ forums. That claim of course is that The Rangers will die.
Let us first jump back in time to an era when the world was much simpler. In 1872 four young men had a dream: to start a football team. The gallant pioneers reached their goal and formed a football club which would go on to win more titles and trophies than any other on the planet. From such modest and humble beginnings The Rangers have dominated Scottish Football for well over a century and went toe-to-toe with the best in Europe. Now, some would argue, that proud and illustrious history is to be lost. Let’s consider that shall we?
As we now know, due to the financial mismanagement of David Murray and Craig Whyte, The Rangers Football Club plc looks almost certain to be liquidated after its assets have been purchased by a new company. The refusal of Charles Green’s CVA proposal by HMRC, a major creditor, now means that the company will cease to exist. The basic assumption behind the rather ludicrous argument that this will mean the end of Rangers as we know it must therefore be that the company and the club are the very same, that they are the one entity. Put simply however, they are not.
The Rangers Football Club plc was incorporated on 27th May 1899, as a quick Companies House WebCheck will confirm. In the eyes of the law and tax authorities, this is a new legal entity, a new beginning. We all know however that Rangers’ history prior to that date was not erased or removed from memory. The fans still proudly sing about our founding fathers and this year marks the 140th anniversary of our birth.
If the argument that Rangers FC will lose its history when The Rangers Football Club plc is liquidated is to be valid, then surely our date of formation would be 1899? Celtic, for example, would therefore have been founded in 1897. That simply isn’t the case of course. Why? Well, quite simply you must be able to differentiate between the club and the company. They certainly are not one and the same.
I don’t know about you but I certainly don’t support or follow a company. I support a football club. Our history, our tradition, our memories, our success and achievements cannot simply be placed on a balance sheet to be wiped out when something goes wrong. I’m sure you all remember the card display at Ibrox when Barcelona visited a few years back. Rangers may questionably be More Than A Club but we are most definitely far more than a mere company, no matter how inconvenient that may be to our many critics.
Furthermore if you are in any doubt regarding the consequences of a Newco Football Club then perhaps a quick google search of Leeds Utd would be helpful. Although it is not as prominent in our media as it perhaps should be under the current circumstances, their story highlights that a new company does not equal a new football club. It would have been a tragedy had a proud club like Leeds United lost its past history due to the negligence of its owners and indeed the same can be said of our beloved Rangers. Thankfully, however, such examples completely contradict any argument (or wish) for such an outcome.
Indeed it seems that facts and logical reasoning only apply to our enemies when it suits their argument. It never ceases to amaze me how dedicated these people become with regards to their unhealthy obsession with The Rangers. They will trawl through governing bodies’ rules and regulations, their Articles of Association and research the processes of administration, incubation and liquidation but yet, when all the facts point in the opposite direction of their wishful thoughts, suddenly they lose their appetite for finding the truth and instead simply turn a blind eye and continue to spread their inane, uneducated lies.
In the words of Thomas Gray: “Where ignorance is bliss, ‘tis folly to be wise”