“LORD, who may dwell in your sacred tent?
Who may live on your holy mountain?
The one whose walk is blameless,
who does what is righteous,
who speaks the truth from their heart;
whose tongue utters no slander,
who does no wrong to a neighbour,
and casts no slur on others… ” – Psalm 15:1-3
READ THIS FIRST! – > #Dorries: The MP Who Cried Wolf (The Letter, Part One)
All done? Then on we go.
Today we proceed from Nadine Dorries’ extraordinary sense of entitlement to… Nadine Dorries’ extraordinary sense of entitlement.
Dorries had been seeking to shape hustings events to her advantage well before the Flitwick hustings event in May 2010. It was reported to me that she had denounced supporters of her opponents and other critics as ‘plants’ and ‘spies’ and even had alleged/imagined enemies forcibly ejected from her own private meetings (titled ‘Nadine Unscripted’; picture a hustings with only one candidate and crowd control more attuned to Nadine’s own personal needs). Typically, it was only after the departure of alleged wrongdoers that she would address any doubts about her expenses claims for what was a rental property with extraordinarily misleading and yet technically factual statements such as “I don’t even have a mortgage”.
Dorries was at the time the subject of an investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards (and then/later the police), and yet she was presenting herself as the only MP with nothing to hide. The most frustrating aspect of this was that the evidence relating to these antics came down to hearsay. By the time the matter came to my attention, Dorries had already compelled organisers to move the final hustings to a date that was more ‘convenient’ for her (i.e. too late for the local papers to cover it before the election), plus arranged for a last-minute arrival and an early departure, the latter set mere minutes before the scheduled open Q&A (what a shame).
Concerned constituents wanted this final hustings event on record and made available to a wider audience, which is why they invited me to record and broadcast it.
Now, I do not deny that Dorries was properly frightened when she found out I was recording the meeting, but it had nothing to do with concerns about personal safety; Dorries was watching her political career flash before her eyes and would not be a politician if she did not immediately recognise the potential cost of my recording her response to any question(s) about her expenses two days before an election at a time when many suspected – and she knew – that she was under investigation for expenses fraud. Anyone asking even the simplest of questions about this rumoured investigation would put her in a position where she would have to admit the truth on camera, or lie on camera. This is surely why Dorries left the meeting even 15 minutes earlier than her previously-arranged escape window (then stood outside chain smoking for a while before dashing off); she could not afford to be inside that building anywhere near an open Q&A session while I was recording.
Thus the desperate lie that I had stalked three MPs and was under investigation for stalking Nadine Dorries at that very moment.
To this day, the only evidence Dorries has presented to support this accusation was my presence at the same event where she claimed a police investigation was already underway. She still cannot produce any evidence of her even having made a complaint prior to this event.
Also, more importantly, my presence at the Flitwick event is the sum total of her evidence of physical stalking. There have been other hysterical accusations aimed at other people (details of the main instance tomorrow), but these have been based on invention (if not extreme confusion), not ‘mere’ distortion. In this instance, I was actually in the presence of Nadine Dorries. Once.
All of her claims of being physically stalked boil down to this one distorted account of a single event… that took place after the period when she claimed she had been harassed and physically stalked to such an extent that police gave her advice on how to avoid her stalkers (i.e. by telling lies on her website about where she was staying most nights).
And on that note we turn to the 2nd instalment from Dorries’ July 2010 letter to the Chief Constable of Bedfordshire Police to take another look at this classic work of fiction by the biggest liar in Parliament:
1. If it were a private meeting, Dorries may have had a point about ‘gatecrashing’, but (a) gatecrashing is not stalking, and (b) it was a public meeting. One cannot gatecrash a public meeting, because you do not need an invitation to attend a public meeting, you only need to be a member of the public.
2. And besides that, I was invited! Much as she would have liked it to be, this was not Nadine Dorries’ own personal meeting; it was a meeting for the benefit of constituents, and constituents invited me.
3. If I had lied to the Chair about being a resident, Dorries may have had the beginnings of a complaint, but I had secured authorisation ahead of time by email and explained clearly who I was (and that I was not a constituent) upon arrival.
4. Travelling by train from Guildford to Flitwick was a doddle, and comparable to a jaunt into London, which I do often. This detail is garnish, as is the “sophisticated camera equipment”, which was as follows; 1 laptop with dongle, 1 domestic digital video camera (plus tripod), 1 bog standard webcam (plus stand). Oh, and I almost forgot the cutting-edge technology used to transport electrickery to these devices; a 5m extension lead.
5. In the minutes before the event started, the broadcast camera was connected to the provider (Ustream) and recording to their server as it sat there in stand-by mode waiting for me to begin the broadcast. This is how I have a recording of me describing both the recording camera and the broadcast camera to the Chair before I sought her OK to begin the broadcast by clicking the enormous (almost playing-card-sized) button on the laptop screen that said ‘broadcast’. My agreement with the Chair was to provide the organisation that had arranged the hustings with exclusive rights to the full recording of the event captured with the high resolution camera, which would be recording alongside the broadcast. I happily offered this asset as a gesture of goodwill and a public service, and I thought it was this ‘only for us’ agreement I was (re)agreeing to when asked by the Chair if the recording was exclusively for their use.
6. Members of the audience were able to detect the broadcast because it was no bloody secret. It was widely advertised on Twitter as the Flitwick hustings event, and featured on this page listing all of the candidates. I would’ve happily announced the broadcast to the crowd, but I did not think it was my place, and I figured the Chair would mention it if she thought the crowd needed to know that they could watch a live feed of an event they were already looking at. Any idiot could find it, and it would take an even bigger idiot to think it was hidden in some way. Happily, there was just such a idiot at that meeting. I recently discovered that the woman who complained about the broadcast – who also taught me how to pronounce ‘Flitwick’ by shrieking it at the top of her voice – first complained to the policewoman present in the lobby. The policewoman did not think it warranted interrupting the meeting, so the woman stormed inside and immediately interrupted the meeting herself. Ustream documented that 234 people connected to the live stream and watched the broadcast before it was cut off in the wake of this woman’s outburst. Yes, many people used the #Dorries tag when referencing the broadcast in Twitter, including me. This happened often when she opened her mouth. It happened rather a lot after she stood up in a room full of people and accused the cameraman of stalking her. It still happens on Twitter today any time Dorries appears on radio or television.
7. Even if it is ‘slightly odd’ for a non-constituent to attend a hustings, that is the beginning and the end of Dorries’ complaint, and it doesn’t add up to anything worth a call to police, never mind a letter to the Chief Constable. I might also add that Jeremy Hunt didn’t throw a wobbly when non-constituents ‘gatecrashed’ the Godalming hustings days earlier, but I wish I’d thought to complain about the three or four other sods who turned up with better camera equipment than mine. I didn’t realise at the time I could have some of them ejected for daring to carry sophisticated equipment across county lines.
On the subject of “Christopher Lee of the House of Commons Police”; Nadine Dorries is invited to explain exactly what she reported and when she did this. If she won’t do this, then I will dig the relevant data out myself and reveal the details for her.
(Oh, who am I kidding? I’ve already filed the paperwork and got my receipt.)
On the subject of the mobile phone number, Dorries conflates Parliamentary security with the security of a phone number that she has added to the bottom of emails to damn near every MP in the House. It is nowhere near as secure as she makes out, but I expect she engages in this charade because I did not use her phone number inappropriately* and she needs to put some kind of spin on this that is more in keeping with her ‘stalker’ narrative. If you’re wondering about my use of this number, Dorries had been dodging valid questions about her accusations of stalking and sought to pretend that she had never been notified of the vigilante element she was stirring up with those same accusations. I sought to at least alert her directly about the latter in way she could not later deny. Having learned her mobile phone number, I called it once (and once only), identified myself and asked to speak to Nadine Dorries. The staff member who answered the phone on her behalf pretended it was a wrong number. Obviously it wasn’t. I wish I’d written it on a few toilet walls now**.
On the subject of the woman accused in this part of the letter; this passage is about humphreycushion. A single paragraph across two pages is the extent of Dorries’ complaint to police about her, and it amounts to precisely zero. In this letter, Dorries described humphreycushion’s comments online as “aggressive and written harassment”. Police didn’t see it that way. End of, right? Well, no. Dorries decided to instead engage in a little trial-by-new-media in a pathetic hatchet job involving Paul ‘Guido Fawkes’ Staines; she smeared the poor woman, portraying her as a welfare cheat faking disability and defrauding the state. Dorries also managed to alienate many disabled people in the process; her attack on humphreycushion was based on common everyday distortions and innuendo, but these rested upon the rather unpopular assumption that if you could type, you could work.
Pardon my temporary loss of composure, but it is this kind of conduct that helps me better understand why critics so often team the word ‘Tory’ with ‘scum’.
Tomorrow: Part Three of the letter. Dorries accuses a third blogger of stalking and makes an entirely false accusation about them hanging around outside her house. Plus, the identity of the mysterious fourth stalker.
[*Compare this to the conduct of a bloggers Dorries does support. One sod – a man who this MP has had over to her house for dinner – once published my home phone number on his website, he says merely to ‘annoy’ me. The calling me at home and shouting at me was, one can assume from this, a casual attempt to mildly irritate me. More recently, Bedfordshire Police kindly passed on a request from me to Nadine Dorries that she remove a link from her site to that of another blogger who had included directions to my front door in a post attacking me (i.e. so people might ‘see the home of a stalker’… no, not kidding). Dorries refused to remove the link from her site. Try to imagine how Dorries would have reacted to my doing anything like this to her. You’d probably have to mop the ceiling afterwards.]
[** This is a joke. I do not suggest or condone this kind of behaviour. Besides, what kind of madman would call for a Dorries when they were already standing inside a toilet?]