At the fringe of the 2008 Conservative Party Conference, a ‘Freedom & the Internet’ panel was chaired by notorious control-freak and liar Iain Dale, and featured Guido Fawkes, Phil Hendren, Chris Mounsey, Nadine Dorries. Oh, and last-minute hanger-on Praguetory.
Quite a line-up.
The event went so well that not one of the bloggers who appeared on this panel has blogged about it yet, though it should be noted for the record that Mounsey can perhaps be excused on (ahem) compassionate grounds.
Some twitters from witnesses who are obviously enemies of freedom include:
Someone on the panel saying that ‘the internet’ needs to clean up its act. Personally, I’ve heard nothing but resistance to this idea from almost every member of this panel (and/or their sock puppets), and the chair (and/or his sock puppets). I’d be very interested to hear who actually said it.
No prizes for guessing who made this claim, though:
apparently guido fawkes (www.order-order.com) is on the a-level syllabus (source)
Paul ‘Guido’ Staines has also claimed that he is responsible for the most popular political video in the UK, that he’s getting up to five times more traffic than he has actually tracked, and that his blog is worth “at least” a million pounds.
We probably should have known what we were in for when the thieving little sod turned up out of the blue in 2005 and immediately declared himself and two mates (including Alex Hilton) to be “three of Britain’s most popular political bloggers”.
Paul ‘Guido’ Staines is also oddly fond of claiming that he does a lot of work to keep the BNP at bay. And that’s all that gets deleted under comments on his site, obviously. Staines would never stoop to censoring comments and/or making anonymous comments on his own website (while screaming ‘astroturfer’ at others) when it’s his own fat arse on the line, oh no.
A most revealing comment from the floor twittered here; it was suggested that delegates “blur the lines between fact and fiction ‘with integrity’…”
OK, stop laughing at the back, there’s still a lot of Dorries to get through.
What did I just say?
OK, just hold your sides and we’ll soldier on as best we can:
Nadine Dorries declares that she gets someone else to do the actual posting for her. Wow. She’s an even more pathetic blog-pretender than I previously gave her credit for.
Nadine Dorries claims that the chief whip has been telling her what she can and cannot blog. But she’s probably just big-noting herself.
At a later event ‘Collaboration or Control? Politics and the Internet in the 21st Century’ featuring Robert Colvile (Telegraph), Iain Dale, Jeremy Hunt MP and Paul Morris (Microsoft), it was twittered that someone (probably Colvile) cited Nadine Dorries as the reason why most MPs don’t blog:
mp nadine has just been quoted as the reason most other mp’s don’t have blogs. but they’ll have to come round eventually (source)
Dale was up to speak immediately afterwards. What he said in response to that is not mentioned, but he’s unlikely to tell MPs that what Nadine is doing isn’t really blogging.
All hail Teh Grand Ambassadors of Political Blogging.
(Psst! Another highlight: Jeremy Hunt apparently claiming that Web 2.0 belongs to the right. In 2006, Hunt was confronted with evidence that two totally-2.0 Tory activists working under neighbouring MP Anne Milton had produced an anonymous weblog claiming that a political opponent was a paedophile. Like Dale, Hunt refused to condemn the action, or even mention it. What a nice guy.)
UPDATE – As I was writing this, Phil ‘nuisance caller’ Hendren finally managed to blog something about the event, but couldn’t squeeze out anything beyond more blurring of the lines between fact and fiction. With integrity, obviously.
(Re: Dorries’ apparent decision to stop pretending to blog… don’t get your hopes up.)