Tories! Tories! Tories!
21st Apr 2011
I had to laugh when I heard David Cameron making a distinction between the ‘No to AV’ campaign and the Conservative ‘No to AV’ campaign, because while the ‘No to AV’ campaign may have a few useful idiots from leftish neighbourhoods on board, there is no question about it being a very Tory animal.
(Psst! Here we pause very briefly to look in detail at the evidence David Cameron presents against the Alternative Vote… which amounts to a gut feeling. My trick knee is telling me that this is a rancid pile of foetid dingo’s kidneys.)
After weeks of dodging questions about their funding with some bullshit pre-emptive promises, the ‘No to AV’ campaign were finally pressed into revealing a partial list of donors in good time prior to the referendum, but after days of polite questions to their previously chatty Finance Director, Charlotte Vere, they have refused to answer any questions about what the total amount donated might be (though they have implied that information will emerge after everyone has voted).
The ‘Yes to AV’ campaign team, by comparison, have not only published a similar list, but also the total amount donated, and the total number of donors.
When you look at this useful annotated list of the ‘No to AV’ donors, the reason for the secrecy becomes clearer; from what they have revealed to date, ‘No to AV’ appears to be funded almost entirely by Conservative donors.
Below is a pie chart based on the figures released by ‘No to AV’ and this annotated version of their list, breaking down donations between sources that are definitely Tory or almost certainly Tory, sources that are unclear at this stage, and £10,000 from a single union:
What follows is speculation made necessary by the curious level of secrecy ‘No to AV’ insist upon…
Here is what the charts would look like if, as with the ‘Yes to AV’ campaign, just under half of the ‘No to AV’ donations were under the £7,500 threshold:
And here is what the charts would look like if ‘No to AV’ pulled a fast one and had all 650 local Conservative associations donating amounts just under the £7,500 threshold:
So, considering how bad it can look if ‘No to AV’ insist on these figures remaining a secret, I will ask their Finance Director Charlotte Vere again to reveal (as the ‘Yes to AV’ campaign have) the total amount of donations to date, and the total number of donors… now, and not after people have voted.
Those of us in the electorate have a right to know if electoral reform is being blocked mainly by the party (almost) in power and the ultra-rich backers and bankers behind them, especially if the ‘No to AV’ campaign claims to have a widespread grass-roots movement supporting the interests of the less-moneyed classes.
UPDATE (03 May) – It should also be noted that (via the Guardian) that “the No to AV figures do not include donations it received prior to the referendum bill passing in parliament”. There has been no response from Charlotte Vere to any of the questions raised in this post; Vere was awfully chatty (even boastful) about the ‘transparency’ of this unfailingly negative and dishonest campaign before these questions about the total amount donated. Now, not to so much. I’d say the cat’s got her tongue, but it’s busy elsewhere:
19th Apr 2011
In late 2009, Dominic Wightman was desperate for ammunition that would help him explain his shameful conduct and gain the support of right wing bloggers after I discovered what he thought to be his secret role in my being smeared as a paedophile (and an alcoholic with mental problems likely to have invented this same smear for sympathy).
Wightman found what he was looking for in a rare but prominent 2008 attack piece by Gavin Whenman where that former blogger describes me as an “internet bully” and makes quite specific allegations about my targeting Conservative bloggers such as Iain Dale for no good reason.
It is my understanding that Gavin Whenman was an employee of Iain Dale’s at the time, but yesterday Whenman refused to even confirm or deny if this was/is the case, claiming it to be an intrusion into his personal life.
We pause at this Dorries-esque outburst just long enough to consider the following information from Whenman’s public website…
Whenman is a journalist, writer, former law student, fan of alliteration and Liberal Democrat, although not necessarily in that order. He works for Total Politics, a monthly political magazine that puts the “fun” in “fundamental shift in the balance of power”. He recently completed an LLM in Public International Law at King’s College London. Until last year, he worked for 18 Doughty Street, a sadly now defunct political internet TV channel.
… before finding a more complete answer via his public profile on LinkedIn:
Script reader (freelance)
Production Assistant at Total Politics
Researcher / Producer at 18 Doughty Street
I should also point out that while Whenman could not find the energy to deny working for Total Politics, he did take the time to resent any implication that he is so corrupt and/or weak-minded as to be manipulated into attacking me on behalf of Iain Dale (a man who is as fond of having his associates do his dirty work for him as Wightman is).
Gavin Whenman also offered a private apology for maligning me (see relevant text below), but he refuses to update the relevant entry because – he claims – he finds the whole affair too “tedious”.
He further claims he is unwilling to help me reverse any of the damage he has done because he thinks my energies are better spent focusing on other matters, a position that completely ignores the capacity of smears and harassment to interfere with this or any other activity, regardless of my choice to attack what Whenman considers to be the right kind of target (presumably someone who isn’t/wasn’t a key source of income).
Gavin Whenman also offers in mitigation the irrelevant fact that his blog is no longer active, as if this makes his article any less visible and/or negates any of the fallout from it. In doing so he brings his position neatly into alignment with Shane Greer, who attacked me at the same time with a similar accusation, describing me as “obviously unbalanced” while grouping me with a convicted stalker (more). Shane Greer was then and is now an employee of Iain Dale’s through Total Politics, but he insists that both he and Whenman acted independently at the time. Much like Whenman, Greer has also refused to offer any retraction or even any defence of his outburst, despite being privy to the worse of the fallout from it.
Dominic Wightman’s use of the article is barely half of the matter; there is worse to come, and Whenman probably expected he would at least have some breathing space between now and sometime in the future when I might hope to reveal any of this.
If Whenman has any regrets about his attack as he claims, I would ask him again, this time publicly, to update the relevant post in line with thoughts he will only share privately because of some new-found desire to avoid being drawn into the matter.
I do this because what Gavin Whenman presents as an “opinion held without malice” is being passed of as fact by someone with a malignant intent that is made crystal clear in this communication with Adrian Morgan, in an email sent when Wightman was trying to convince that man to attack me on his behalf:
Tim Ireland lives 3 villages from me and my local supporters (including the MP) want Ireland downed. He has already admitted to me I am the sole reason he’s not written on hs blog for 2 months. He is a vicious bully and I will not sit back and get slaughtered by him without telling the world how to silence a big bully, how I did it, that I am not particularly proud of how I did it but that yes I did it. There MUST BE a mix here of eating humble pie and sabre-rattling or I will be walked over. I must also bring the right wing blog alliance on my side and to do this I need to show that I have been capable of bringing down the most famous left wing blogger, albeit temporarily, that ever existed in the UK.
At the time, Dominic Wightman also planned to ‘out’ me as a stalker while publishing what he claimed to be a psychiatrist’s report on my mental health; a further smear that I’m sure you will note is entirely in line with Shane Greer’s previous attempts to poison the well while claiming that it was my criticism of Iain Dale that amounted to an ad hominem attack.
I’m sure I risk being called a bully (again) for daring to object to this kind of thing, but I’m not left with a lot of choice at this stage, and I certainly don’t plan to intimidate Whenman by publishing his home address or distorted/fabricated revelations about his personal life and state of mind (i.e. like some of the people he chooses to align himself with).
I choose instead to defend myself by revealing publicly what Whenman will only admit privately.
When I’m at liberty to share any of the rest of this, I’ll be sure to update this post with the further information that Gavin Whenman is privy to, but refuses to act on, because he claims to be too bored to move either way:
“I appreciate you’ve sent this email in good faith and it must take
particularly vast testicular fortitude to send it to somebody who has
maligned you in public (and for which I apologise sincerely). However,
I’m going to decline answering any of your questions for one simple
reason: I don’t want to be drawn into whatever it is that is going on
here. This is partially because I don’t care…” – Gavin Whenman, via email
“I do not want to contribute any
more to whatever is going on here…” – Gavin Whenman, via email
“I do not wish to be
drawn any further into this matter and I honestly care so little about
whatever is going on I might just pass out*. As for the apology,
you’ve had it and maybe, if I ever get around to updating my blog
after almost two years dormant, I will update the relevant post, but I
don’t feel the imperative to do so today because … well, as I just
wrote, I don’t really care. Is this a passive or active decision on my
part? It could be argued either way and we’ll just have to disagree on
the matter…” – Gavin Whenman, via email
I’ve sat back and let Whenman’s perverse attack go for years because the conversation underneath it should make it obvious to the casual reader that he is either having his readers on or having himself on, but his comments being blown out of all proportion by others and/or presented minus any context changes things considerably. The headline alone is actionable, and far more likely to be taken at face value in the current climate.
And, as I have already said, you ain’t heard the half of it yet. There is worse to come. Whenman has been made aware of it, but refuses to act on it.
If there’s a shred of principle left in the man, he might feel a pang of shame that it took an outing like this to finally prompt action. If there isn’t, he will simply use this as an excuse to continue his inaction and in doing so maintain a public attack on me that he privately claims to regret.
UPDATE – It was the latter. In fact, Whenman went further than any of you might expect. Even further than that thug Hendren dared to. After claiming he was too bored with the matter to make a simple update to an old post, today he created an entirely new post, publishing material that he knows will put my family at risk. He now claims he was too bored to make himself aware of these risks, when they were spelled out to him in the same correspondence he published. Total bastard. No wonder he gets on with Dale so well.
UPDATE (20 April) – Just in case there was any doubt about his intentions, last night, Gavin Whenman tried to use the safety of my family as leverage in an attempt to get this post removed… while claiming that my being upset about that justified his original ‘bullying’ smear. Class act, all the way.
14th Apr 2011
In the summer of 2009, my life ground to a halt and publication on bloggerheads.com ceased for several weeks while police tracked down the origins of a falsified interview with Glen Jenvey that sought to smear, damage, implicate and/or intimidate that man alongside myself, his former working associates Patrick Mercer and Michael Starkey, and the moderator of a leading Muslim website.
When it appeared, Glen Jenvey had just been through a stage where he had been convinced by a then-unnamed third party to smear me as a convicted paedophile, and only just pulled up short of publishing this claim alongside my home address (an ex-directory address provided by this same unnamed person). Jenvey was subsequently interviewed by police, and later reported by them to be a vulnerable adult capable of suicide, if not self harm.
The author of the falsified interview with Glen Jenvey that appeared at around this time also sought to exploit my show of support for a close friend who had sought to combat alcohol addiction by openly blogging his attempts to manage his addiction, and at this stage it was not known if the article had been uploaded to one of its locations before or after Poons took his own life. (A minor saving grace for the publisher: it was before.)
While all of this was happening, a rival blogger Iain Dale was heading his own smear campaign against me using distortions he could not justify and assertions he could not substantiate. Dale could not explain circumstances in which he appeared to take advantage of my being smeared as a paedophile, and he was knowingly peddling a different but equally serious libel against Tom Watson at the time. Plus (and this is rare for his site) Dale was holding a thread open so anyone would be able to publish anything they pleased immediately on his site (i.e. to better enable his libelling of Tom Watson, occasionally by ‘accident’). In these circumstances he sought to avoid any discussion of his appalling conduct by portraying himself as a victim of stalking and me as a danger to others. Dale later deleted the relevant claims, though he refuses to retract them and even repeats some of them from time to time. There have been various ongoing consequences of these lies and distortions, but at the time my primary concern was that it generated a cloud of hostile sock puppets that served as cover for a single unknown and potentially dangerous operative.
So, to be clear on this point:
Publication ceased on bloggerheads.com at the time because of this high risk to others; there was an unknown player on a poorly-policed field who was willing to go to extraordinary lengths to damage almost everyone involved in the story I had been investigating.
(*Emphasis on the ‘unknown’. If it was not someone with a vested interest in the story, for example, then that made them even more dangerous.)
At the time I had a serious interest in defending myself against the different (but soon to be intertwined) smear campaign initiated by Iain Dale, and I even held evidence that showed the concerns I sought to contact him about were entirely justified… but I couldn’t publish it. The only responsible course of action was to leave the matter in the hands of the criminal justice system, at least until the police had attempted to determine who the author was.
At one worrying stage, police felt unable to continue because of the usual difficulty/expense in compelling foreign web providers to reveal user data such as IP addresses, so I went out and secured this data myself and presented it to police as follows (in two parts):
The document was uploaded to – http://www.scribd.com/doc/15448951/Interview-May-11th – and the properties of the downloadable versions tell me that the creator of the original Word .DOC document was ‘Adninistrator‘ (note spelling), and that it was created on 12 May 2009 23:09:00, the fourth and final writing task involving 66 Minutes of editing time. It was not uploaded until approximately 2132 GMT on May 14 2009
The second version published on articles-heaven.com went live on June 21, however, the profile used to publish it (also under the name ‘J Reynalds’) was registered on May 13, 2009. There is little doubt that both uploads were the work of the same person, and the IP data surrendered by articles-heaven.com relates to that May 13 registration event:
IP address: 220.127.116.11
Datestamp: Wednesday, 13 May 2009, 09:21:49 [UTC+1 hour BST]
The police traced that registration event to a broadband account at the home of Dominic Wightman, a man who had for months previous to this been posing successfully as an informant concerned about the conduct of Glen Jenvey and another man who happened to be a former associate of his; Michael Starkey.
Dominic Wightman was the person who ‘found’ the falsified interview, and he even asked me if I had written it when he first arrived with his ‘discovery’. Wightman then tried to blame authorship on a series of people, including Michael Starkey.
(See the article by Tom Mills and David Miller that alerted me to the truth about Dominic Wightman and his many vendettas against former associates – The British amateur terror trackers: A case study in dubious politics)
But even though I was later asking police if Dominic Wightman was involved when they were preparing to visit his home (!) the investigating officers denied his involvement and did not make the connection themselves because the relevant broadband account was in his wife’s name.
Subsequently, the police were poorly-prepared when they interviewed Wightman in September 2009, and they all-too-readily bought his story that he had not authored the falsified interview, and had instead merely uploaded it.
In his defence, Wightman claimed to have acted foolishly/hastily in not reading what he had uploaded, and so pretended to have no idea at the time about content in it that might harm or alarm me or anyone else.
“… my local supporters (including the MP) want Ireland downed. He has already admitted to me I am the sole reason he’s not written on hs blog for 2 months. He is a vicious bully and I will not sit back and get slaughtered by him without telling the world how to silence a big bully, how I did it, that I am not particularly proud of how I did it but that yes I did it. There MUST BE a mix here of eating humble pie and sabre-rattling or I will be walked over. I must also bring the right wing blog alliance on my side and to do this I need to show that I have been capable of bringing down the most famous left wing blogger, albeit temporarily, that ever existed in the UK.” – Dominic Wightman in an email from September 2009
And here is the guts of the story he eventually settled on:
“This tale is ripe for comment on ‘once and never again’, as other commentators will try and slur and blur the facts. What some would call ‘smear’, and my lawyers shan’t be having any of that. The fact is I am being blamed by an Australian blogger, who regrettably lives over here in England, of putting an article not written by me on a couple of other sites. Not once have I claimed its authorship, and its contents have been checked by the authorities, and are not considered by any means abusive. What I did by forwarding this work to a few article databases, there is no law against, and something that happens a million times a day online. Incidentally, this is something the blogger in question is accused of doing himself many times by other users of, and commentators on, the internet. But let’s focus on my actions, not his.” – Dominic Wightman, from an audio recording intended for publication, September 2009
In this audio, Wightman seeks to deny something the article is not accused of doing (it contained far worse than mere abuse) while denying authorship of the article.
Wightman also hilariously minimises his actions as ‘uploading some words to a site’ (in much the same way that another Tory excused his publication of my unlisted home phone number on his site as ‘just sharing a series of numbers’) while accusing me of the same dastardly act.
At the time I asked Wightman many times if he had written the falsified interview. At first he was merely evasive, then he accused me of being paranoid and a bully, but he did at one stage dare to deny it (while pretending he had already done so):
“No, I didn’t write that piece as stated clearly in the past.” – Dominic Wightman, in an email to me, September 2009
Then, after many demands from Wightman that we arrange a meeting so he could explain himself in person, he accused me of stalking him, effectively refusing all contact while publishing what he knew to be damaging lies about me on his website.
(A carbon copy of Iain Dale’s position; the only differences being that Dale had a cut-price lawyer sign his ridiculous letters off for him, and he has a lot more people flocking around him willing to sock-puppet/echo on his behalf.)
Wightman continues to deny writing the fake interview in question; his position is that he found it and uploaded a copy of it to other sites, without really looking at it in any detail, merely to get Michael Starkey’s name and his past association with Glen Jenvey into the public domain.
This was an outright lie, and yesterday I happened across evidence that will help to establish it as such once and for all.
In 2009, Dominic Wightman had convinced a man named Adrian Morgan to help him with his website. Morgan immediately parted ways with Wightman when he found out what he was up to, and he has since shared with me a series of .DOC documents sent to him by Wightman, involving multiple emails across a series of dates before and after the period when the falsified interview with Jenvey was written and uploaded.
The properties of Wightman’s .DOC documents repeatedly revealed an otherwise-generic username rendered unique by the cack-handed way it is spelled:
As I told police early in 2009:
the creator of the original [falsified interview] Word .DOC document was ‘Adninistrator‘ (note spelling), and that it was created on 12 May 2009 23:09:00, the fourth and final writing task involving 66 Minutes of editing time…
66 Minutes of editing time.
Dominic Wightman didn’t quickly copy and paste this article as he claimed to the police; he authored some if not all of it over more than an hour on his own computer.
Paul Wheeler (Farnham CID) told me that Wightman claimed not to be the author of this fake Jenvey/Reynalds interview that led police to his door; that he claimed to have merely uploaded it and genuinely thought it to be the work of a former ally of Jenvey’s named Jeremy Reynalds. Wightman said this knowing that Reynalds denied it vehemently at the time, and that he (Wightman) had instead repeatedly tried to blame Starkey for it (while pretending to have ‘found’ the article on a site when he himself had uploaded it). Wightman knew I was deeply concerned about the fake interview, who was behind it, and what they might be capable of, and he chose not to confess or even alleviate my concerns in any way. Instead, he not only alerted me to it and repeatedly enhanced any concerns I may have had about it, but repeatedly tried to suggest that Starkey was behind it.
Wightman also pretends that he was not reliably informed of Jenvey’s vulnerable state until after he spoke to police, but this too is a lie. Wightman knew, and after he found out that Jenvey had attempted suicide once and was likely to harm himself again, Wightman continued this charade and others, even taunting Jenvey directly by email at times.
Wightman also flaunted needlessly cruel revelations about Jenvey’s personal life and state of mind on his site while feigning concern for the man’s condition. In one such article, Wightman contended that Glen Jenvey confessed to acting alone when smearing me as a paedophile, but Wightman knows that Jenvey confessed to police that another unnamed person was involved; he even tried to suggest it was Michael Starkey at the time. It was only after Jenvey’s claim about Wightman’s role went public that Wightman began to contend that Jenvey acted alone and part-base his denials on this ‘fact’ he invented.
Here we turn fully to the matter of the unnamed party who initially convinced Jenvey that I was a convicted paedophile and what Wightman has recently said in denial after I have repeatedly spoken of his involvement in this dangerous smear:
“So, where has Ireland got it in his bonnet that I called him a paedophile? Possibly from the vulnerable adult Glen Jenvey who admitted to creating a paedophile smear about Tim Ireland back in 2009 all by himself? (Repeat – all by himself – I wasn’t even in touch with the man back then and certainly didn’t pull his strings as Ireland claims). ” – Dominic Wightman, published on his site, April 2011
These are more lies from a man who tells the most reckless and dangerous lies without hesitation. Dominic Wightman was in email contact with Glen Jenvey before, during and after the paedo-smear event and I can prove it. I can also produce evidence of Wightman furnishing Jenvey with my home address prior to his outburst when he repeated the accusation on dozens of websites.
(Once again, a big ‘thank you’ to Rachel Whetstone at Google for refusing to remove these.)
Despite his denials, Dominic Wightman was in touch with Glen Jenvey back then, and knowingly exploited a vulnerable adult, even after he discovered that man was regarded by police to be at risk of suicide and other forms of self harm.
Hilariously, Wightman now pretends not to have believed this privileged information until police told him themselves, when this does nothing to excuse the way he conducted himself afterwards.
Here’s an example of his conduct and contact with Jenvey in late 2009, after he had been reminded by police of Jenvey’s vulnerable state:
“Well that is odd you freak. I met [police] about you last week. We are all discussing ways of getting you cut off from your computer. Get some medication. ” – Dominic Wightman, in an email to Glen Jenvey after being interviewed by police, September 2009
At more or less the same time as writing this, Wightman was trying to project responsibility for Jenvey’s agitated state onto me, through the false identity of ‘Dick Walker’, in the form of some laughingly loaded questions from someone claiming to be doing “research on bloggers”…
“How do you feel about the victims you create by attacking your targets? Would you plead guilty for manslaughter if you pushed one of your victims to suicide?” – Interview questions by Dominic Wightman (via the identity ‘Dick Walker’), September 2009
… before publishing a more overt version of this smear on his website, this time under his own name:
“Pushing blog victims often into a suicidal state is nothing to be proud of and something the Internet could really do without… How long before Ireland’s venom actually kills someone?” – Dominic Wightman, published on his site, September 2009
Wightman/Walker also sought to use some of these loaded questions to excuse his conduct in the falsified interview (while at the same time denying authorship):
“You publicly have admitted to once being an alcoholic, correct? Is not your success in overcoming the addiction to alcohol a success you should celebrate publicly and share with others who might be going through the same kind of addictions?” – Interview questions written by Dominic Wightman (via the identity ‘Dick Walker’), September 2009
But there can be no question now about Dominic Wightman both writing and publishing the falsified interview with Glen Jenvey, and the following is just a small sample of the lies he originated, then published and attributed to his former associates Jenvey and Starkey though this method:
(Please note that this is only a sample, and it has been edited in places to protect a series of targets.)
JR: Glen, in England you are now known as the man who makes up stories about Muslims. What is your side of the story?
GJ: Basically there is a lot of fuss about nothing. A website run by Islamic extremists altered its posts to entrap me into making it seem that I fabricated evidence which was negative towards Muslims. They know that they published a hit list of Jewish assassination targets in Britain and that I caught them red handed publishing the list. Basically they are friends with other extremists from the political left including a stupid blogger Tim Ireland and they together have tried to smear me. But they have failed miserably to smear me because the press in Britain has continually ignored them and their story about me while continuing to accept the validity of my stories.
JR: So Tim Ireland is someone who smears those who expose the wrongdoings of Islamic extremists?
GJ: Yes. Basically he is just a small-time carping Australian blogger and self-confessed alcoholic who lives in a council house in the South of England who likes to hassle people who go about their daily business so he can make a name for himself. He is someone who will get into bed with anyone for any small story even people who carried out 7/7. He has upset a lot of people and has lots of enemies after him including the cops and some members of the press.
JR: How has Ireland’s smear affected your work and relations within the counter terrorism community in England?
GJ: All my actual contacts are intact and I still inform the cops and my security service links and diplomatic contacts are the same as before here and abroad. But now I basically try to avoid journalists and politicians because they do make stuff up for a living; their whole lives are founded on a bed of lies.
JR: Do you still work with Patrick Mercer, the Conservative politician?
JR: Is that something you regret?
GJ: No. I used to respect Patrick actually but now I just see him as a fair-weather friend, like all politicians he is self serving and he lacks knowledge in the area. He has amateurish people around him like many backbenchers do. I feel that he has never been told that he is actually very average and he has shown that by the mistakes he has made.
JR: Like what?
GJ: Patrick was an actual racist which is why he resigned as a minister. I think privately he is a racist whatever he says or does publicly. That is what David Cameron thinks which is why Mercer has no future in the Conservative party when it comes to the next government. There are other actual reasons too but I’d like to keep quiet about them for now.
JR: Are you Richard Tims?
GJ: No, not as the Ummah website made out that I was Richard Tims.
JR: So who is Richard Tims as on the recording made by Tim Ireland it was clear that you used the name Richard Tims as an assumed name?
GJ: Basically I never denied using the assumed name Richard Tims for emails or as an ID on the Ummah website. But I do deny allegations that I fabricated evidence and that is why I had my hard drive checked soon after the allegations appeared and that is why I am taking Ummah to court and have lodged complaints with the police and the PCC relating to the allegations. Ummah knew that I used the name Richard Tims before the posts went up on their site.
JR: Is it true that you posted material on the Internet suggesting Tim Ireland was a paedophile?
GJ: No there is no proof of that. Tim Ireland has a history of being unstable and he probably posted that sort of material himself. He even calls himself Manic. Manic by name – manic by nature. The man is a loser. If he didn’t post the material himself it was the idiot who runs Ummah called [name snipped] who is well known to the police and has a history of criminal activity as well as a dysfunctional family.
It’s worth noting that even though Wightman denies authoring this, he has repeatedly returned to the same accusations it makes against me, often publishing them under his own name (e.g. that I am an undesirable alien sponging off the state, that I fabricate these attacks against myself in order to gain sympathy, that I am a substance abuser, an associate of Islamic extremists, etc. etc. etc.)
Basically, Wightman’s denials are contradicted by his own behaviour, as well as the new evidence tying him to authorship of the falsified interview that threatened to do so much damage to so many people.
(*It should be obvious why he maintained this pretence with police. )
“I am not particularly proud of how I did it but that yes I did it. There MUST BE a mix here of eating humble pie and sabre-rattling or I will be walked over. I must also bring the right wing blog alliance on my side and to do this I need to show that I have been capable of bringing down the most famous left wing blogger, albeit temporarily, that ever existed in the UK.” – Dominic Wightman in an email from September 2009
Dominic Wightman is engaging in an ongoing smear campaign against me and others because… we caught him engaging in a smear campaign against me and others.
I have enough evidence, I am sure, for a rock-solid civil case covering damn near everything Wightman has set in motion against me, right up to and including Wightman’s repeated use of smears of paedophilia and worse as political weapons.
The only reason this is unlikely to proceed is that I will almost certainly be left footing the bill, as Wightman is also the type of person who will declare himself bankrupt in order to avoid debts he does not agree with.
Meanwhile, a series of Conservative MPs (and one wannabe) are allowing Wightman to trade off their ill-deserved credibility, and I am left wondering where the limit is for these people, and what lengths Dominic Wightman has to go before they will take a stand against the man, or even dare to contradict him.
Hell, Nadine Dorries has actively endorsed Wightman’s accusations of stalking because it suits her needs, and I hope to reveal a lot more about that can of worms very shortly.
UPDATE (21:30). – Some passages have been amended to make it clearer to the casual reader that at no time did Adrian Morgan knowingly contribute to Dominic Wightman’s smear campaigns.
13th Apr 2011
It’s recently become clear to me that Boris Johnson is lacking in the personal standards one should expect from a public servant. He is, in my experience, prone to taking the path of least resistance when he encounters the stench of corruption among his allies, regardless of potential risk to innocent parties.
I’ve decided to share that information with a few people by publicising the 1990 phone call with Darius Guppy.
Londoners are encouraged to print and display the poster below and/or call (0207) 0963708 to listen to their mayor. They can even leave a message if they like. Selected messages will be published at the brand new blog at http://boris-johnson.blogspot.com/
[For those who are wondering: No, I have no been sitting on that Blogger.com address for the better part of a decade :o) I checked only this morning and was amazed to see it was still available.]
Click to open in new window and print 2 x posters onto A4 paper
12th Apr 2011
Yesterday I revealed that Dominic Wightman had claimed to be acting against me on behalf of the Conservative MP, Anne Milton. Milton has been keen to avoid an admission of any relationship with Wightman by avoiding comment on the matter altogether. It is a day after she was presented with evidence that Dominic Wightman claimed to be acting on her behalf, and she has not yet deemed it necessary to contradict the man.
Another class act in the school of keeping your head down is Conservative MP Patrick Mercer; Mercer has a documented professional association with Dominic Wightman through that man’s amateur anti-terrorism initiative, VIGIL.
Patrick Mercer (right) with Dominic Whiteman, Oct 2006
Mercer also has a long history of turning a blind eye to Dominic Wightman’s conduct, and it was after the collapse of VIGIL that Mercer learned that Wightman had claimed to be funded by none other than Lord Ashcroft, but was unable to produce any of the money he claimed he had access to and was refusing to pay someone he had recruited as an employee (Letter #1). Even if we put aside the way Wightman treated this person (who was awarded over £14,000 by an employment tribunal and never saw a penny of it) and all the other warning bells about a range of improprieties, it should have been obvious from the Ashcroft cash claim alone that Wightman was a conman, and yet Mercer turned a blind eye to this and even continued to maintain a professional relationship with Wightman because the material he provided served his personal/political agenda (Letter #2).
Even after Patrick Mercer learned how Dominic Wightman was treating other people he had lied to about VIGIL’s funding, the most the man earned was a mild rebuke, most accurately paraphrased as ‘leave me out of it’ (Letter #3).
All of this happened before I encountered Dominic Wightman, and apparently the two finally parted ways at some point, but Mercer still refuses to say when this happened and why, and he made no attempt to advise me of Wightman’s history or warn me of what he was capable of, even after I ended up getting smeared as a paedophile*.
Worse; Mercer has been relying on Wightman’s smear campaigns in order to avoid discussion of that same man. Through an informant I learned that Mercer has been responding to private questions about Wightman and the evidence I have published by claiming I am an electronic stalker* and not to be trusted… so, apparently, he won’t say a word against Wightman because he is worried about the cost to his reputation, but he’ll make serious and damaging claims about others** for the same damn selfish reasons.
Publication of these letters will have far deeper resonance for Dominic Wightman, but I’ll leave the relevant analysis of measures used by Wightman to avoid the relevant debt for a later post. For now, the priority is to (again) press Patrick Mercer to finally take a public stance against this conman.
(Regular readers will note a delicious twist to the correspondence that is, I am sure, pure coincidence; in Letter #2 Mercer has the audacity to refer a victim of Wightman’s cons back to her own MP, who just happens to be…. well, I’ll let you read the letter and work it out for yourselves.)
MINI-UPDATE – Wightman has claimed he was “working as an intelligence adviser to Mercer” at the time the above letter was written, and disputed some of its content, but the relevant page has been removed. I hope to bring you the detail in a later post to do with VIGIL finances, employment tribunals, debt and what have you.
As you can see, as late as 2008, Patrick Mercer was still playing footsies when he should have been kicking arse.
Patrick Mercer is aware that Dominic Wightman has shown a consistent pattern of deceiving people in order to convince them to do what he wants, and then attacking anyone who dares to complain through intimidation and further deceit. Currently, we are at a stage where Wightman is mostly deceiving people so they might help him to attack the people he has previously deceived (i.e. it’s collapsing in on itself like some demented form of the classic Ponzi scheme) but it would be a mistake to hope that this downward spiral will bring us to a satisfactory conclusion.
So, today, I ask Patrick Mercer (again) to stop helping Dominic Wightman in his ongoing smear campaign, and to finally take a public stand against his deceits full-stop.
Patrick Mercer has been in constant pursuit of publicity in line with a narrow political agenda, and it is only within strict security-related parameters that he appears to recognise any duty to the public. Beyond that, it is self interest and his narrow political agenda that takes priority.
Still, it should not surprise us if Patrick Mercer has forgotten to some extent that his duty is to the public, and not himself; he does, after all, appear to think that constituents are answerable to MPs (i.e. and not the other way around).
[Note - I have blurred some of the more sensitive/irrelevant details in Letter #1. The hidden information has no immediate bearing on anything asserted here, and certainly doesn't threaten to undermine or contradict it. Sorry to bore you, but I need to leave notes like this because Wightman likes to pretend that such edits are undertaken for the purpose of deceit, when he is the only person to have published falsified correspondence in this affair. If you're new to this issue or this type of conflict in general, this is called 'projection', and it is typical of Wightman.]
(*This may be more Iain Dale’s fault than Patrick Mercer’s, but I can only guess at this stage, as they are both refusing to discuss the matter; Mercer may have got the idea from Dale or someone else that I am the type of person likely to work in league with Wightman despite knowing what he is like. Or, he simply may not have cared enough to protect anyone but himself.)
(**Not just me, either: Mercer is also using a ‘trial by media’ method to repeatedly accuse his former mistress – to whom he owes money – of stalking him.)
11th Apr 2011
Though I didn’t know it at the time, Dominic Wightman appeared in my life in early 2009 with the express intention of using me to damage the reputation of two former associates who held evidence of his previous attempts to deceive others during his doomed career as an amateur anti-terrorism operative.
He also intended to smear me as a paedophile for reasons I can only make educated guesses about at this stage.
Last month I published evidence suggesting that Wightman or a member of his immediate family had donated money to the campaign(s) to elect the Conservative MP for Guildford, Anne Milton. (I have been deeply critical of Milton in the past, and the most damaging evidence I hold against her involves her disgracefully standoffish position following a smear campaign where two of her close allies smeared an opponent as a paedophile.)
Wightman’s reaction was immediate; a single sentence amounting to “So what?” accompanied by a 1,900 word essay explaining how he had ‘won’ the fight, the battle and the argument and therefore did not need to write anything further about me.
(Please note that I regularly link to my sources as a matter of course, but I will not link to any of Wightman’s material while he continues to broadcast my home address alongside entirely untrue and downright dangerous claims about myself and others)
Anne Milton has so far refused to take a public stance on Dominic Wightman beyond some vague denials, but I fail to see how she can do so when I can now produce an email where Wightman claims quite specifically to be acting on her behalf (see below).
This correspondence comes to us from Adrian Morgan, a former contributor to the website venture Dominic Wightman moved on to after his amateur anti-terrorism initiative collapsed.
Just as he lied to me in order to convince me to attack his former associates, Wightman lied to Adrian Morgan in order to convince that man to help him in his attacks on me*.
But even when convinced by Wightman’s lies, Morgan protected himself and others by an adherence to ethics that should be obvious in this exchange, and when Morgan discovered the truth, he immediately parted ways with Wightman and made his reasons for doing so quite clear:
“In future I will not be associated with Westminster Journal while it is used as a vehicle for character attack, sock-puppetry and bile.” – Adrian Morgan (source/background)
(Psst! Wightman was desperate to have Morgan remove the word “sock puppet” from his statement, but it was the discovery of a sock puppet that was clearly Wightman’s work that alerted Morgan to Wightman’s lies. I will write about this and Wightman’s repeated use of false identities in a future post.)
Wightman’s original motives remain a mystery, and he is obviously trying to put one over on his former website partner in this exchange, but his intention to harm my reputation because of what I could reveal about him is crystal clear, as is the thinking behind his eventual decision to claim that he had ‘downed’ me by accident rather than design (highlights in bold are mine):
From: Dominic Wightman
To: Adrian Morgan
Date: Tue, Sep 8, 2009 at 10:07 AM
Subject: Re: After a lot of thinking…..
I am going to do the following:
1. Islambase take-down (done yesterday) Author: me
2. Tamil Tigers Take-down (Friday) Author: me
3. Muslim Schools take-down (Friday) Author: me
4. Black Red alliance take-down (Friday) Author: me (help would be appreciated)
5. Spinwatch take-down (In a few weeks post thorough research) Author: us? / you
6. Tim Ireland take-down (Sunday – a day before he releases a vicious take-down on me) Author: Dan Chambers, a pal.
7. Tim Ireland psychological evaluation (Friday): author: a psychiatrist pal.
1. Vigil repudiation piece
2. Insolvency ad Ilham Frandsen
3. On Jenvey
4. On Starkey – attack
5. On Extremism
1. On Spinwatch and the Black-Red alliance
I am happy to do the repudiation piece on Vigil and say yes I got that partly wrong. I am also happy to be humble about the Insolvency. I am also willing to be soft on Jenvey because of his illness. My position on extremism will also be very middle of the road.
Tim Ireland lives 3 villages from me and my local supporters (including the MP) want Ireland downed. He has already admitted to me I am the sole reason he’s not written on hs blog for 2 months. He is a vicious bully and I will not sit back and get slaughtered by him without telling the world how to silence a big bully, how I did it, that I am not particularly proud of how I did it but that yes I did it. There MUST BE a mix here of eating humble pie and sabre-rattling or I will be walked over. I must also bring the right wing blog alliance on my side and to do this I need to show that I have been capable of bringing down the most famous left wing blogger, albeit temporarily, that ever existed in the UK. If I do nothing, people will make me out to be Jenvey II which I am not. A mix of showing teeth in the Starkey take-down and in the Ireland take-down will present an image of someone who is not prepared to be meddled with, who keeps his cool and who has a rare thing these days – a spine. My Wellington publish and be damned approach will work better than agreeing with this flotsam. I agree where agreement needs to be met there should be agreement made. But I am not going to lie down on this one.
My responses must be brutal and concise. Where humble the tone must be just right. I would like your help on this, Adrian, as a friend, even if you only partly agree with my strategy.
Think about it and let’s talk later. Hope your day is not as bad as you thought it might be. Sunny here in Surrey and there is a cool calm around my desk.
From: Adrian Morgan
To: Dominic Wightman
Date: Tue, Sep 8, 2009 at 2:25 PM
Subject: Re: After a lot of thinking…..
I must advise a note of caution about point 7 – a “diagnosis from afar” by “a psychiatrist”.
I know such things happen – nowadays it is individuals like Raj Persaud (a plagiiaristic sore on the arse of humanity) who descend to such unprofessional behaviour.
Diagnosis from afar may be adequate for historical figures, but it is the most insidious methodology going for character assassination.
I don’t care if you have a professional psychiatrist writing it – I would not be responsible for my conduct if you did this. I would campaign for the psychiatrist to be disbarred for unethical conduct. I got my mother’s psychiatrist to abandon his role as Chairman of the Local Alzheimers Society after a vigorous letter-writing campaign.
And you cannot seriously expect to publish something like that unless such a “psychiatrist” gives his name to such a low venture – to not name your source would look like blatant media manipulation. I would openly condemn it, once it was published.
“Diagnosis from afar” was instituted by Lyndon Johnson’s backers in 1964 – a magazine in the US called FACT sent a questionnaire to 12,000 US psychiatrists to ask if they thought Republican candidate Barry Goldwater was mentally unstable.
Goldwater lost the election. The un-named psychiatrists never called in a shirink to diagnose the behaviour of Lyndon Johnson who used to curl up in a ball under his bedcovers, crying like a baby and gettig his secretary to cuddle him until he slept.
You must – now more than ever – engage in some form of ethical conduct – and journalistic integrity.
If you think Tim Ireland is unhinged – do it is an opinion piece, with supporting evidence – your emails.
To atempt to use his apparent illness as a tool to attack him, using a pseudo-professional “diagnosis” (an “argmentum ad verucundiam” or “logical falllacy of appealing to authority”) is not only unethical – it is morally repugnant.
Instead of challenging the evidence I retain/publish that shows he is a liar and a serial abuser of false identities, Dominic Wightman has sought to smear me as a bully and worse.
He has failed to make any of the smears he has invented stick, and has subsequently sought to build on smears begun by his fellow Tories (‘bully’, ‘mentalcase’ and ‘stalker’ have all been tried before under the guise of ‘fair comment’ by Iain Dale and a series of Total Politics employees and assorted hangers-on) and carried them on their behalf to entirely unacceptable extremes that these people continue to gain from while feigning victim status (!) and pretending they play no role in the affair.
Many of these people, including three Conservative MPs and a wannabe, continue to defend as statements of opinion that which they know Dominic Wightman asserts to be fact. They continue to do this despite knowing how harshly this lie is pressed on their behalf by Wightman and the associates he shared my home address with (highlights in bold are mine; this is from an exchange where Richard Bartholomew was threatened with violence):
I’ll tell you something for nothing Jacques, the first Cheerleader who runs into Richard Bartholomew in real life is going to slap him upside the cheek- 1) for his 2-year harassment campaign on my friends, 2) for his aiding and abetting the 10-year campaign of the woman-stalker Tim Ireland. Tim Ireland put women in genuine fear of their lives, and Bartholomew helped him and backed him up. The man is filth.
47 minutes ago · 2 people
they need fear instilled as they have done. that one filming the tory bird was a proper nasty stalker. ob should do something.
45 minutes ago · 1 person
(Psst! Hilariously, one supporter of Dorries seeks to justify the repeated use of the word ‘stalker’ to describe me on the basis that I use the word ‘thug’ to describe Flowers and anyone like him who seeks to intimidate others by publishing sensitive/private data such as home addresses and/or home phone numbers on their website in an attempt to intimidate critics. It’s an absurd challenge that would amount only to ‘tit for tat’ if there were anything in it.)
The latter comment is a clear reference to the lie pushed by Dorries and her supporters that my being invited to a public event constituted stalking, and I shall be returning to this topic as soon as is possible.
Today, Conservative MP Anne Milton is in a position where she will at least have to make it clear if Dominic Wightman acts on her behalf or not.
Tomorrow, more correspondence will be revealed that will put another Tory MP (Patrick Mercer) in a similarly difficult position.
[*I am unlikely to get anywhere with Wightman under civil law, as he has already avoided a debt he "did not agree with" by going bankrupt, and it is reasonable to expect that he will repeat this stunt. I won't spell out the other stunts he could pull for fear of giving others ideas, but the fact that civil action would carry a considerable expense I could never retrieve should be enough. Addressing his antics through criminal law has proved equally difficult because he often convinces others to take risks on his behalf when he is not using false identities through foreign web providers. Again, I won't be spelling out the details, because it does not serve the public interest to have the relevant techniques and loopholes described in any detail. Wightman has been spoken to by police about his conduct toward me and others, but pretends that the opposite is true; i.e. as if my communication with police has resulted from his complaints about me. He is even reckless enough to tell lies on behalf of specific police officers, and still his Conservative associates refuse to contradict him when he claims to be acting on their behalf.]
11th Apr 2011
Right to Know presents itself as a “pro women” campaign and argues that women have a right to know about certain ‘facts’ before they proceed with an abortion. It further accuses those charged with caring for these women of deliberately keeping these ‘facts’ from them because of what they describe as a “financial vested interest”; they claim and imply quite starkly that named health care providers/organisations care more about the money they can generate from abortions than they do about the women who seek their help.
Perhaps these accusers see a financial vested interest as the only possible source of corruption, because the group Right to Know has a hidden vested interest, and is keeping that information from these same women while basing their entire argument on their right to know about such things.
The blogger Unity has already covered in detail the plan by fundamentalist-led Christian groups to reduce access to abortion through a series of seemingly secular arguments, and how Right to Know fits into this:
The document, a Powerpoint presentation produced by Dr Peter Saunders of the Christian Medical Fellowship for the Lawyers Christian Fellowship in 2007, indicates that Dorries’ current campaign and amendments are part of long-term strategy put together by an alliance of prominent anti-abortion organisations with the overall objective of securing the complete prohibition of abortion in the UK on any grounds, including rape, serious foetal abnormality and even serious risk to the life of mother. (source)
The priority of these groups is the prevention of what they see to be the murder of the foetus, not the welfare of the mother. This priority should be obvious in the stance their leading campaigners take on biblical scripture (e.g. calling the Church of England ‘cowards’ for not acknowledging as literal passages from the Bible that they claim supports the idea that life begins at conception), but these same people are also on record as whining that “if you mention God in an argument in the UK, you lose” (source/more). One assumes this is a major reason why these people have decided to keep this information from the same women they insist have a right to know about vested interests that may influence their level of care (but if this is the case, they fail to understand or refuse to acknowledge that there is a difference between not mentioning a god in your argument and lobbying secretly on their behalf).
The people running the web presence for the Right to Know campaign have been asked via Twitter if they will declare who is funding/supporting their efforts, but they have declined to answer. They have also been asked via their YouTube account to provide some scant information about who is working the pumps, but have responded by deleting every such question without answering, and disabling comments on their campaign videos so these questions might be hidden from the public.
Further, a WHOIS lookup for the relevant domain name revealed that the registrant had violated the terms of service of the provider (Nominet) in order to hide their identity; they used a generic description in place of a name (‘Web Officer’) and hid the registering address from public view with a false claim that the site was the work of a private individual.
The registrant has so far refused to update the details to bring it in line with Nominet’s requirements, but last week Nominet did exercise their right to withdraw the privacy settings on the address, which revealed the following:
7 – 8 Grays Inn Square
Right to Know Campaign
(Psst! To be clear: the following appears to be what Nominet revealed about the original registration details after revoking the registrant’s ‘private individual’ status – on or about 4 April – so I do not think the registrant ever intended to have this information appear in the public domain.)
At this address is the office of the law firm Cooke Matheson, part of Wellers Law Group.
None of the people I spoke to initially at Wellers Law Group knew anything about any of this until Paul Martin popped up to theorise that it had not been registered by anyone in their organisation, but had instead been registered by a client:
“We have not registered anything! I think the client, for whom we are the R/O probably did this” – Paul Martin, Wellers Law Group
[I assume R/O = registered office]
From here, a position of “all the work we do for clients is confidential” prevented Wellers Law Group from naming the client.
Here, I congratulate the registrant for the sturdiness of their final rampart… but I suspect they fail to appreciate that their identity shouldn’t be a secret at all.
Right to Know bases their entire argument on the position that women have a right to know about vested interests that influence the information they receive, and yet they do so without declaring their own interest(s).
I do not need the name of the client in order to see the extraordinary lengths they have gone to in order to disguise themselves while shouting about what lies behind Green Curtain No. 2… but I invite you to make an educated guess anyway, based on the following:
– Nadine Dorries fronted an earlier campaign to reduced the abortion limit to 20 weeks for ‘scientific’ reasons, and was recorded on camera explaining how much she relied on the work of Andrea Williams and the organisation she led; Christian Concern for our Nation. (Andrea, a self-described fundamentalist Christian, wrote the amendments that Dorries presented to the House in an attempt to pass them into law.)
– It was only after the campaign that Dorries admitted that the relevant website “was registered and created by CCFON (Christian Concern for our Nation) members, a fact not mentioned on the site” (source/context)
– Hosted by Andrea Williams, the event presented the speakers’ biographies as follows:
Paul Martin is a partner of Wellers, based in London and Bromley, Kent. He has recently published the Christian Charities Handbook – a guide to all things concerning the governance and management of charities. He travels widely and has a client base of both national and international organisations. Paul has considerable expertise in dealing with UK and non-resident charities as well as “not-for-profit” concerns, and is a director of two international charities.
Jane Whitfield is a Solicitor with a considerable expertise in the charity sector. She has been on The Law Society’s Wills and Equity Committee for a number of years and is a member of the Charity Law Association. She is also a Trustee of ‘Hope in the Community’, a Christian charity.
- When approached with the WHOIS data, Paul Martin initially offered “more information”, but then declined to answer any questions about his relationship with the Lawyers Christian Fellowship and Christian Concern (the shiny new face of Christian Concern for Our Nation).
Now, revealing a lobbyist as an active member of a Christian movement/group may have the potential to undermine the credibility of what they claim to be a secular argument, but that is not what destroys the argument in this instance.
What destroys the argument in this instance is that ‘Right to Know’ do not actually believe that you have a right to know; they do not offer the same transparency they demand of others, which reveals the very foundation of their argument to be a sham.
To paraphrase the only book some of these people appear to have read; it is a foolish man who builds his house upon the sand.
In fact, Nadine Dorries and her secretive fundamentalist backers will want to take a closer look at all of Chapter 7 of the book of Matthew, especially if they claim to stand by the Bible’s every word as if it is the word of God:
1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
6 “Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.
Ask, Seek, Knock
7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! 12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
The Narrow and Wide Gates
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
True and False Prophets
15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
True and False Disciples
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
The Wise and Foolish Builders
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
28 When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, 29 because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.
(Psst! Just to save some needless shouting; I do not interpret the Bible as these people do, and I do not claim to obey its teachings… plus, I have no hidden vested interests, despite what Dorries and her supporters may imply. So I dare to judge, and have no fear of being similarly judged.)
30th Mar 2011
Some of you may have noticed Nadine Dorries finally following the ’20 Weeks’ campaign with her difficult second album, Right to Know (more). Just to be clear, what we are looking at here is series of cheap American pop covers (compare righttoknow.org.uk to righttoknow.org), with the only original material being a cheap re-hash of crowd-pleasing highlights including dubious arrangement of statistics into unconvincing power chords and the delightfully unconvincing disguises worn by Nadine’s fundamentalist backing group.
Last time it was the registration of the20weekscampaign.org that gave them away. This time, Dorries is pushing righttoknow.org.uk, which has been registered using the generic description ‘Web Officer’ instead of a real name, and opts to disguise further detail by incorrectly classifying the domain/site as the work of a private individual.
Nominet have confirmed that both measures put this user in breach of their agreed Terms, and it will be interesting to see how the mystery registrant responds to a subsequent request by Nominet that they comply with the agreed rules.
One assumes the same team that maintains this site also has some role to play in the official/associated Twitter feed and YouTube channel. Requests have been sent through both of these communication channels requesting that they be clearer about who is funding/coordinating their efforts, but so far the only response has been the deletion of any such questions from the YouTube channel, and the refusal to allow any further comments.
Here I will remind you that Nadine’s latest attempt to reduce the number of abortions hinges on a demand for transparency; she contends that women have a right to know about the shadowy forces that seek to influence them without declaring an interest… while not thinking for a moment that the same might apply to her.
On 30 March 2010, I submitted an information request to the office of Nadine Dorries. It is now exactly one year later and Dorries and her staff haven’t even got around to acknowledging receipt yet. I suspect they intend to defy the request, and a complaint is with the Information Commissioner’s Office.
Since receiving the request for information her office holds on me, Dorries has made a claim that I have sent her and her staff ‘numerous offensive emails’ and other ‘vile’ and ‘abusive’ and ‘explicit’ messages. My information request should at least compel her to reveal all emails/messages sent to her office in my name, but instead she continues to pretend that no such request has been made.
I expect she will cry ‘stalker’ when the ICO case officer gets in touch; this means that she will be refusing to honour an information request on the basis of evidence she is refusing to release under that same information request.
Transparency is wonderful, isn’t it?
(Psst! Odds are good that the testimony of ‘Tanya’ comes to us via Forsaken, but Dorries will be keen to avoid any such admission, especially after her disastrous attempt to pass that group off as an established ‘pro woman’ charity. Meanwhile, apropos of nothing, I bring you shocking news of a lack of transparency in the abortion industry overseas.)
UPDATE – I’ve made a video that attempts to explain Dorries’ position a little better.
21st Mar 2011
The latest edition of Conservative Change Channel is (finally) out and it includes two special moments from Jeremy Hunt (recorded just prior to the 2010 General Election):
1. The first is classic Hunt. He once again brushes right over the significance of two local Conservative activists who smeared an opponent as a paedophile, as if it’s of no significance. The look on his face at the time was ‘yeah, so what… get to the point’. He has repeatedly dismissed the importance of this smear campaign and repeatedly endorsed the MP (Anne Milton) who turned a blind eye to this campaign and involved herself personally in a further smear campaign against me. Hunt’s wife once gasped in shock when hearing about it, and Hunt shushed her loudly right there in the street, lest she make the fatal mistake of expressing any kind of alarm about it.
(I often wonder what he told her after making his excuses and hurrying off, as he so often does. I doubt it was the truth.)
2. Jeremy Hunt rather rashly weasels his way out of his practice of deleting past entries from his weblog and Twitter feed by claiming he is accountable after all… but only because of measures that corrupt liars like Iain Dale and Nadine Dorries describe as ‘stalking’ (when their mates are not doing the same or worse to people they don’t like).
So over the coming days and weeks – knowing that I have the blessing of the Minister of Teh Internets – I am going to encourage others to hold their MP to account via a weblog, starting with some simple tasks you will find surprisingly manageable and effective. I even have a plan for sharing the load on some of the more specialised/work-intensive tasks (e.g. journalism, research, data analysis, etc.). I will also be making recommendations* designed to minimise the risks I’ve exposed myself to, and you certainly won’t find yourself standing alone if some scumbag fights back with lies or smears.
I ran a similar (and successful) campaign for people to blog on behalf of MPs in 2005, but we have a much busier online village now, with better tech at our disposal, and this effort is going to be a lot less forgiving; we have a whole new gang of liars in charge, and they’ve been making all sorts of promises about transparency that they probably never expected they’d have to live up to.
(*On this note; you do NOT have to be a constituent of any given MP to take part. In fact, it’s probably better if you’re not; I found myself cut off from democracy at a local level because I dared to scrutinise my MP, and I’d hate to see that happen to someone else. Take your time. Choose your target. I’ll be on deck with Lesson One shortly.)
10th Mar 2011
The following is an interview/article featuring Nadine Dorries from a 2007 edition of the Salvation Army’s War Cry.
Putting aside these deeply religious contentions, which are striking in themselves…
“I try to live my faith. Some days I fail quite miserably but I constantly try to do what Jesus would do.” – Nadine Dorries (source/PDF)
“I am not an MP for any reason other than because God wants me to be. ” – Nadine Dorries (source/PDF)
… Nadine’s contention that her previous ‘middle way’ option would put her at odds with pro-lifers is a fallacy if not a deceit; the entire campaign was conceived, written and backed by large pro-life groups whose full role Dorries has repeatedly attempted to hide from the public (detail | video) .
Second, those same groups are coordinating/enabling her latest efforts where Dorries and others are masquerading as “pro woman” campaigners seeking to protect vulnerable adults from the physical/mental harm they and other religious groups claim is a common post-abortion problem… but this article/interview from 2007 makes it very clear that Dorries is driven primarily NOT by a desire to protect women, but instead a deeply religious decision to reduce the number of abortions by any means possible, even if these means appear, intially, to be at odds with the anti-abortion agenda:
“I’ve been told my Bill will get nowhere while I have pro-lifers and abortion rights people against me. But my argument is: How can anyone argue – on any grounds – that my proposal is not right. Currently there are about 600 abortions a day in the UK. I’d like to reduce that number by at least half. The public is not interested in banning abortion. Those who hold out for a complete ban have not changed the law – they have not saved a single life. To me, saving some lives is better than saving no lives at all. I hope pro-lifers will come to share my view that some progress is better than no progress. ” – Nadine Dorries (source/PDF)
The full text of the interview/article appears below. It also includes some detail about her living arrangements at the time that will raise an informed eyebrow or two. She also repeats her dumbfounding contention that she is not accountable to those who live outside her constituency, even while she is campaigning to restrict their access to appropriate medical care.
MP call for lower abortion time limit
Salvation Army ‘War Cry’ #6182, 2 June 2007 (source/PDF)
HERE’S one for A Question of Sport: Which MP’s grandfather was a co-founder of Everton Football Club? Answer: Liverpool-born Nadine Dorries, Conservative MP for Mid-Bedfordshire.
‘My grandfather, George Bargery, founded St Domingo’s FC which became Everton FC,’ she says as we talk in her Westminster office. ‘Everton’s ﬁrst game in the newly formed Football League was against Accrington. My grandad was the Everton goalie. He had a good game and became quite a local hero.’
That game was played on 8 September 1888 – the opening day of the season. It was played not at Goodison but at Anﬁeld, which is today home of mighty Liverpool. So, the most important question to ask of any Scouser: Red or Blue? Liverpool or Liverpool Reserves?
‘Red, deﬁnitely,’ says Nadine. ‘I suppose because of my grandfather I should support Everton, but I can’t just stop supporting my team. I couldn’t swap to Everton any more than I could cross the ﬂoor of the House of Commons.’ Nadine grew up on the Breck Road, a long kick from the Kop.
‘On match days I used to earn 2/6 looking after people’s cars,’ she says. ‘Money was very tight, so the football money helped. The family food bill was 7/6 and my father was ill from when I was very young. I had an impoverished childhood. I had to borrow shoes from a friend to go to school and one year my winter coat came from church or The Salvation Army.’
Nadine started her working life as a nurse in the Royal Liverpool Hospital. She then moved to Zambia with her husband, and took over the running of a community school.
‘I didn’t go to Zambia with that intent,’ she says, ‘but the woman who was running the school died of malaria. She was pregnant and wouldn’t take anti-malaria pills because of the risk of inducing a miscarriage. In the event mother and baby died. It was very sad. I just happened to be there so I took over the running of the school.’
Nadine returned to England and became managing director of a company. From 1998 to 1999 she was a director of BUPA.
She fought her ﬁrst general election in 2001 in the Greater Manchester seat of Hazel Grove. But it wasn’t until 2005 that she entered Parliament.
How big a career change is it to move from being a nurse to being an MP?
‘It’s not such a big change, actually. It might sound corny but it’s about caring for other people. In that sense it’s just a different aspect of what I’ve done throughout my working life.’
Nadine says she ﬁnds it difficult to pin down the moment she decided to become an MP. In fact, it is easier for her to identify a point which almost led her not to become an MP.
‘I was in church one Sunday around Easter when I said to God that maybe I should give up on the idea of being an MP. In 2001 I’d fought a difficult seat. I was bringing up children and was busy. I thought I had missed the boat. Maybe I’d got completely the wrong idea of what I should be doing.
‘I was struggling. One minute I’d tell myself to stay calm because something would work out for me, the next I’d panic and think it wasn’t going to happen.
‘I can still recall the chair I was sitting in. I remember looking at the cross and saying to God; “I’ve obviously got the wrong idea. It’s in your hands now.”
‘I walked out of church feeling relieved. I’d given up chasing something I’d been after for years. Then a few days later I got a phone call to tell me to keep a certain date free. I went along to a selection meeting as invited, was chosen over 17 other candidates and within six weeks of that day in church I was elected to Westminster.’
Two years on from that election victory, what is it like being a working mum who is an MP?
‘The hardest thing to deal with is the long Westminster hours. My two oldest girls are at university and my 15-year-old stays with her dad from Monday mornings until Thursday nights when I get back home. While male MPs might put their feet up when they get home, I go home to pick up my other full-time job – being Mum.
‘MOST of the time the girls are great about it but there are times when pressures build up. I’m accountable to 77,000 constituents, to my local Conservative Association, to the whips’ office and to the chamber of the House of Commons. Most of all I’m accountable to my daughters.
‘Even though I try to put them on the top of the pile, sometimes the phone rings, somebody wants me to do something and I can’t give them the time I’d planned to. It gets a bit tricky balancing family and work.
‘We need more women in Parliament. Women make up 52 per cent of the electorate and need representing. Being an MP is twice as difficult for a woman as it is for a man. Westminster is a harsh, unfriendly environment. Many women MPs retreat into being constituency MPs rather than parliamentarians.’
What makes that constant juggling of time, energy and demands worthwhile?
‘I feel I’ve built a really good relationship with my constituents. Before I became an MP I didn’t realise the scale of problems some people face. Being able to help people through such problems is immensely rewarding. I love being in Parliament. I love taking part in debates. But for me it is the people I represent who come ﬁrst.’
As well as representing the people of Mid-Bedfordshire, Nadine is sponsoring the Termination of Pregnancy Bill to reduce the upper time limit for abortions from 24 to 20 weeks.
‘This year is the 40th anniversary of the Abortion Act, which introduced the 24-week limit,’ she says. ‘Medical technology has changed enormously in that time. For example, thanks to 4-D scanning we know that a foetus can feel pain early in pregnancy.
‘No Labour Government will ever restrict a woman’s right to an abortion. They have what is known as Emily’s List, an organisation which helps ﬁnance the campaigns of women parliamentary candidates. Only pro-choice women are eligible for funding. Even if a future vote to abolish abortion carried a party whip, the Emily’s List MPs would support a woman’s right to abortion.
‘On the pro-life side of the fence, the public takes little notice of those who want to abolish abortion. They are dismissed as extremists. If I were to argue that all abortions should be banned, the ethical discussions would go round in circles because one person’s opinion is as valid as another’s.
‘My view is that the only way forward is to argue for a reduction in the time limit. I’ve heard the arguments about how it’s every woman’s right that she should be able to have an abortion. But I say it’s every baby’s right to have a life because science tells us that by 24 weeks they feel pain, they laugh, they smile, they hear and they think. There is a lot of public sympathy for the opinion that 24 weeks is too old for a foetus to be aborted.’
But doesn’t offering a middle option mean that you get caught in the crossﬁre between strident prochoicers and avid anti-abortionists?
‘Yes it does. I’ve been told my Bill will get nowhere while I have pro-lifers and abortion rights people against me. But my argument is: How can anyone argue – on any grounds – that my proposal is not right.
‘Currently there are about 600 abortions a day in the UK. I’d like to reduce that number by at least half. The public is not interested in banning abortion. Those who hold out for a complete ban have not changed the law – they have not saved a single life.
‘To me, saving some lives is better than saving no lives at all. I hope pro-lifers will come to share my view that some progress is better than no progress.
‘Doctors who carry out abortions are increasingly worried that they’ll deliver a live foetus, even at 20 weeks. The way babies are terminated from 20 weeks is horrendous.
‘According to Royal College guidelines, a canular is inserted through the mother’s abdominal wall into the heart of the foetus, which is given a lethal injection. Doctors wait two days to ensure that the baby is dead and then it is delivered.
‘I have seen scans of this process. It was like watching murder. I have seen the foetus moving away from the needle. It is the most heart-wrenching, awful thing to see.
‘If the public saw these images, they would be ﬁrmly in favour of reducing the age limit on abortion.’
Taking on such an emotive and explosive area as abortion is not a soft option for any MP, let alone one so new to the trade.
‘When I ﬁrst started this campaign I felt under attack,’ says Nadine. ‘I had hate mail. I felt my personal world was falling apart. My faith has helped me pull through. People are praying for me – not only fellow MPs but also thousands of people across the country.
AS a child Nadine was brought up to go to church. ‘But like a lot of kids, I left the church when I was a teenager,’ she says. ‘At the time I would have described myself as a Christian but it was only about 15 years ago that I was converted through an Alpha course. I realise how shallow my belief was before my conversion.’
It was the vicar of her local church who invited Nadine along to the ten-week introductory course on Christianity.
‘My ﬁrst response was to tell him I didn’t need to go,’ she says. ‘But I ended up going anyway. I suppose I was going to church without even knowing the most important aspects of Christianity – what it means and what it is about. Like many people I didn’t really know why Jesus died on the cross, how he could forgive our sins or who the Holy Spirit is. All of that was a revelation to me.’
What does Nadine’s faith give her?
‘My faith tells me who I am. It tells me why I am here. It tells me who is with me while I am pursuing my goals. I sometimes think if I didn’t have my faith, who would I be? How would I live my life?
‘My faith constantly gives me my reference point. It keeps me grounded. I am not an MP for any reason other than because God wants me to be. There is nothing I did that got me here; it is what God did. There is nothing amazing or special about me, I am just a conduit for God to use.’
And who is Jesus to Nadine?
‘Jesus is alive with me. I have my times of wondering – of not quite sensing his presence. I don’t know everything. I can’t do everything. And I can’t achieve anything in my own strength.
‘I need guidance. I need protection – and so does my family. I pray a lot for these things. ‘I try to live my faith. Some days I fail quite miserably but I constantly try to do what Jesus would do.’
And whether a Scouser comes from the red or the blue side of Liverpool, they’ll tell you one thing for sure: God loves a trier.
Perhaps God exists, and perhaps he/she does love a trier… but their alleged position on liars isn’t quite so favourable.
Once again, I’m calling her out in front of her constituents, in front of her supporters, and in front of her god.