Posted by Tim Ireland at August 23, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

I thought we got just a little bit lucky when Google cached this snapshot of Nich Starling’s tracking data from and decided to keep it for a few days.

You can see from the screen capture below that it caught two visits from the IP address

Nich was kind enough to set his comment timestamps to display both time and date, and from there it was a short and simple hunt to see if there were any comments with similar timestamps to either or both visits recorded by Nich’s account.

There was one, and here it is:

James Becks said…

I know for a fact it was a UKIP activist trying to use the group to stitch up Norman Lamb and when everyone realized it was fake they would turn on his rival Trevor Ivory. The person wanted the Eastern Daily Press to blame Trevor and then when it is revealed that it couldn’t have been him no one would believe a word the Eastern Daily Press says about Norman Lamb. It was a long shot way to reduce the credibility of the Eastern Daily Press too making it easier for the UKIP candidate to get elected. By the way the UKIP candidate knew nothing about this.
2:40 PM, August 15, 2007

Unfortunately, all this gives us is a confirmed repeat of this comment, which has reported here as the work of the entity currently known only as

No love for UKIP, supports Conservative candidate Trevor Ivory, has issues with the Eastern Daily Press… nothing new there.

But still, better than a poke in the eye with the blunt stick, eh?

It sure beats the hell out of sitting on your arse and doing nothing about it except bitch and moan about how unfair it is that people think you couldn’t give a flying monkey’s either way.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 22, 2007

Category: Anne Milton

The Tories have been back and forth on this hospital thing for quite some time now, and we haven’t seen hide nor hair of the new Shadow Minister for Health. Not so much as a distant cry has reached the press.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 22, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

Iain Dale says; “Whoever has done this deserves all they get when they are found out.”

When they are found out?

Well, there’s genuine outrage for you. Iain’s so annoyed about this that he’s going to sit back and wait for whoever did it to be found.

(rolls eyes)

I think Iain Dale can do better than that… if he wants to.

I think Iain Dale can identify Norman Lamb’s impersonator(s). At least, I think he’s got a better shot at it than most of us put together… and I’m about to explain why:

[Note – As the possibility remains that more than one person is involved, I’ll be referring to the impersonator(s) by their static IP address – – and using this as a name to identify an individual or team/group.]

1. Judging by the varying disinformation has been putting out (i.e. naming/blaming everyone but the Tories), we are almost certainly dealing with a Tory source.

2. Judging by the local knowledge (and support of Trevor Ivory) shown in the Wikipedia edits, we can be reasonably certain that moves in the same circles that Iain moved in when running as a candidate in the same area.

3. The fraudster(s) blundered about under multiple/false personalities with a single static IP address… even after it had been discovered. So they play with weblogs, but they’re relatively new at it or not very good at it. As the premier blogger that most newbies and wannabes never tire of kissing up to, Iain Dale is the most likely recipient of an identity-revealing comment or email from regardless of (1) and (2).

So, to summarise and help Iain Dale along…

Tracking Data

I think there’s more than a good chance that Iain’s tracking data (he uses *three* third-party packages, all for the same site) contains a record of the IP address – if that IP address was used to post a comment under a known profile and Iain has a record of it, we’ll have our man. Or woman. Or men. Or women. Oh, you know what I mean.

Some of this data has already been and gone, so he’ll want to crack on with this sooner rather than later, before the trail goes well-and-truly cold.


Iain can also spend some time thinking about likely suspects who might have emailed him, and might even want to start by checking for messages from any Suffolk Conservative Councillors (who use the same provider as our target). It’s also possible that foolishly emailed Iain under their real name promoting the impersonation in some way (by claiming to have ‘found’ it, perhaps).

Of course, it’s not practical that he go through all of his email… just those from some likely suspects. All he needs to do is look at the source data of messages in his suspect shortlist and keep a sharp eye out for the magic number… the process is so simple he shouldn’t even need Dizzy to hold his hand.

(OK, that last comment was unfair… and unseemly. Dizzy is a clever chap when he’s not trying to be, so perhaps he can think of some faster and better ways to check records and chip in.)

Iain, no doubt, will wonder out loud why he should do anything I ‘order’ him to do on his own personal property lah-de-dah. To avoid burdening readers of both sites with yet another loaded question, I’ll simply answer it ahead of time:

Because, let’s face it, you’re going to come across as a bit insincere if you utterly condemn something without taking reasonable measures to stop or discourage it.

Right, Iain?

UPDATE (6pm) – Iain appears to be claiming here that he did all of this or better before I suggested he do it. But why does he appear so reluctant to take my advice if it’s so clearly in line with his thinking? Who did he tell about his findings? What were those findings? I’d ask these questions and more, but he’s not answering my emails and he appears to have banned me from his website without telling me again. If he’s playing the not-rising-to-the-bait game he’s got a bloody nerve after dumping that “He insinuated!” post that included its own insinuations.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 21, 2007

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Dan Hardie – Two teenaged Quislings: This isn’t about only ‘translators’. This isn’t about just ‘the 91’. This is about two teenage girls murdered because they worked folding clothes in some sweatbox… murdered because they worked for people sent there by our elected representatives.

– Watch the video.
Write to your MP. Ask them to refer your concerns to the Home Office, Foreign Office and Ministry of Defence.
– Let us know if you get a response.
– Join the list of supporters
– Spread the word with a lovely blog banner.
Sign the petition.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 21, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

But I’m not going to link to it because I don’t link to people or parties that I don’t like (or items I feel I might have difficulty challenging in detail).

It doesn’t stop me from being really, really cross about it, though. Here, just look at me being cross:


[Heh. Dizzy’s exercise from yesterday now makes a lot more sense. Will Iain deny sending him an email about this, I wonder?]

UPDATE (10pm) – Cute. Iain now appears to be holding back on any comments I submit. He’ll be telling me to ‘grow up’ or ‘engage in a proper debate’ next, just you watch.

UPDATE (11pm) – Sorry. If you’re new here, this is what Iain is most probably bitching about. Still nothing back from Iain yet. Looks like he just wanted to spit his dummy and leave it at that. And not a scrap of curiosity about, you’ll note.

UPDATE (22 Aug 10:30am) – Iain has cleared a whole bunch of comments for publication, but not mine. Two comments submitted ask why he’s not clearing my comments and there’s been no answer… so he does want to spit his dummy and leave it at that. In other news, Dizzy is ‘worried’ about me, but only in a casual ‘just thought I’d blog this’ way. No real effort has gone into it or anything…

UPDATE (11am) – Ahahahaha! Look at where Dizzy locks the relevant thread… right after he stupidly spells out something I was honour-bound not to mention. Last month Iain accidentally CCed Dizzy when he clearly meant to alert him privately to our conversation via a BCC… but not in any way that could be described as a conspiracy, of course. Iain only (eventually) admitted to doing this because I promised it would be off-the-record. And that’s the way I kept things until Dizzy opened his big, fat mouth. Thanks, Dizzy.

[BTW, that email exchange was about outright libel (as opposed to ‘almost libel’)… the anonymous kind that Iain Dale and Paul Staines have made a bad habit of tolerating if not encouraging on their websites.]

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 21, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

If the BBC ran this story but also spent a few moments looking into the background of the organisation pushing it (i.e. using the word ‘Conservative’ somewhere and pulling up well short of yelling “Tory front!”), that would be typical of its liberal bias, yes?

UPDATE – A not entirely-unrelated item:

Media Watch Watch – Mail on Sunday forces BBC Jesus bastard climbdown: The Mail can’t resist an opportunity to show off how influential it is while simultaneously highlighting anti-Christian pro-Muslim bias in the liberal media.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 21, 2007

Category: Consume!

Pretty much since cheap plastic was invented, there have been cheap plastic dress-up and accessory kits for kids that allow them to roam the neighbourhood as a nurse, a cowboy, a police officer, etc.

My, how things have changed.

Now, thanks to Woolworths and Chad Valley, we have cheap plastic dress-up and accessory kits for kids that allow them to roam the neighbourhood house as a wizard.

And not just any old wizard in league with magical otherworldly forces, no… but instead, a wizard in league with the State of Israel!


'Star of David' wizard book and dress-up kit in Woolworths

[Trivia: A pentagram (“inverted”, no less) was once the seal of the city of Jerusalem.]

UPDATE – Over at B3ta, some peeps remember a similar association involving Chorlton and the Wheelies: The show was sold to numerous countries around the world. However it was never sold to Israel after a graphic artist mistakenly drew a Star of David instead of a Pentangle on the front of the talking spellbook, which spoke with a Germanic accent.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 21, 2007

Category: The War on Stupid

Tch. I thought most politicians had tried grass, and decided that they didn’t like it. Shows what I know…

Times – Parliament protesters are evicted: Dozens of people who have been camping opposite Parliament have been evicted. The Greater London Authority said that it had to act because the area had become a “health hazard”. Litter was being strewn around Parliament Square and it was being used as a public toilet, officials said. The authority said that it was taking no action against Brian Haw, the veteran campaigner who has been protesting against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for five years.

Guardian – Parliament protest cleared: The camp, which was begun by Brian Haw, was disbanded yesterday afternoon after police and officials from the Greater London authority issued eviction notices. A spokesman said it had been forced to act because of a growing litter problem and because campers were using Parliament Square as a public toilet. He said that no action had been taken against Mr Haw, who has been protesting at the site since 2001. Yesterday Mr Haw told the Evening Standard: “Ken Livingstone is … very concerned the peace camp may be killing grass in Parliament Square – what about the kids in Baghdad, Ken?”

IndyMedia – SOCPA – report and film of yesterday’s raid on parliament square: yesterday’s operation saw the greater london council use bye-laws to once again curb brian’s protest. over recent weeks, some new tents had arrived in the square, and some of the people in them, not connected with the peace protest in any way, began to behave anti-socially. it is unclear why these people sudenly turned up, but it gave the ken livingston the excuse to put out press releases yesterday claiming that peace protestors were defecating in the flower-beds and causing other problems. most of the mainstream media dutifully spread these lies, and gave cover to another expensive operation as, yesterday morning, a seven foot high wire fence was erected to enclose the entire square.

BBC – Parliament peace campers evicted: Mr Haw has permission from the police to have a 24-hour demonstration site on the pavement of Parliament Square under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005. The GLA said this is being respected. The metal security fence skirts around Mr Haw’s tent, where he has been living since he began his vigil in 2001. But access to the rest of the square is being restricted by GLA officials and a small number of police officers.

So now, as an unfortunate side-effect, *nobody* can protest on Parliament Square. Oh, goodie.

Here, have a look at the bloody big fence… no doubt we’ll all be on the wrong side of one soon.


1. So, we know roughly how much the police are pissing away on these efforts; what’s this exercise costing the GLA?

2. In my experience when Councils and similar authorities see someone ruining their nice clean [blank], they try to catch who’s doing it for a number of practical reasons (it often stops with one person, chances of civil recovery, etc.). Police have been down at the square regularly taking pictures and logging faces for months… years now. Surely the police and the GLA, even if they don’t work in tandem, are working to identify exactly who has been messing in the bushes. Actually, with all that manpower and evidence to hand they must have managed to arrest the miscreant(s) by now…. No? Odd, that.

4. So how long will that fence be in place? If it’s officially to allow the seeding or laying of lawn, they’ve got a few weeks, realistically.

PS – Please keep off the grass. Please keep off the grass. Please keep off the grass.

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 20, 2007

Category: George W. Bush – Reagan Diaries: George W: “Find the Kid a Job”…: Direct quote from the just published REAGAN DIARIES. The entry is dated May 17, 1986…. ‘A moment I’ve been dreading. George brought his ne’re-do-well son around this morning and asked me to find the kid a job. Not the political one who lives in Florida. The one who hangs around here all the time looking shiftless. This so-called kid is already almost 40 and has never had a real job. Maybe I’ll call Kinsley over at The New Republic and see if they’ll hire him as a contributing editor or something. That looks like easy work.’ (via)

Sorry, but if this is real, it still doesn’t count. Karl Rove established a long time ago that ‘born again’ means ‘born again’ and anything that happens before the age of 40 is a ‘youthful mistake’ regardless.

If any admission arises, it’ll probably take the form that this was George at his lowest ebb etc., just before he found God and turned his back on liquor… and cocaine… and wild women…

Perhaps we’ll even get to see a hitherto-undiscovered entry from the next day, which begins; “Boy, was I wrong about that young Bush lad…”

[Psst! Regulars: have you noticed the year? I call ‘nexus’.]

Posted by Tim Ireland at August 20, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

Mark Pack (LibDemVoice) – Who was the person who faked the Norman Lamb Facebook profile?

Some lovely detective work by Mark. I have a couple of details and observations to add: is the IP address connected so strongly to the Facebook impersonation. This is a *static* IP address used for DSL customers of KeConnect. It could be that more than one person is working on this, but only one user account is involved.

Of all of the activity tracked around the IP address, the most revealing is the Wikipedia record which shows that this IP address has been used solely to repeatedly alter Norman Lamb’s Wikipedia profile to include claims of dirty tricks against Iain Dale, claims that these were not reported because the local paper favours the Lib Dems and a plug for the next Conservative candidate due to face Lamb.

There are also some comments on the LibDemVoice website originating from the same the IP address seeking to blame the impersonation on everybody but the Tories.

So I’m going to go out on a limb and say that a Tory is behind this.

Now, those who habitually doubt the word of any Liberal Democrat may doubt the comment record claimed by Mark Pack, but mostly this is going to involve Tories who will at the same time believe or pretend to believe any old rubbish coming from Tory HQ.

Of course, one of those Tories is Iain Dale, who has recently and consistently shown strong form tolerating and allowing sock-puppetry and other forms of online chicanery when it suits him, but just because he tolerates it from others doesn’t mean he does it himself (he just can’t blame people for making that assumption is all). Also, just because someone anonymously claims that Lamb only increased his majority by telling voters that Iain Dale is gay (I wasn’t aware this was ever a secret, BTW), it does not follow that Iain Dale would be involved in this attempt to undermine his former adversary.

If anything, logic would dictate that the Tory with the strongest motive is the Tory who (currently) has the most to gain from a successful campaign of this kind and/or one of his key contributors to his campaign…. but Trevor Ivory has reportedly issued a strong denial.

I think I’ll sign off there for now and go in search of that denial…

UPDATE – (4pm) – Well, I’ll be jiggered… the Suffolk Conservative Councillors website was designed by KeConnect. I wonder if Suffolk Conservative Councillors also use KeConnect as their ISP.


Still trying to find an online record of the reported denial…. wait, no… with this little bit of help, I managed to track it down:

Eastern Daily Press MP fuming over Facebook fake: And in another twist the internet hoax had an e-mail link to the MP’s Conservative rival, Trevor Ivory, who yesterday strongly denied all knowledge on how the page was created… He said: “I strongly condemn what has happened to Mr Lamb and I have written to him to say I had nothing whatsoever to do with it.”

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