Monday, May 21, 2007

Should Tory Bloggers Be More Aggressive in Defending Themselves?

Watlington, who write for the Social Affairs Unit blog, has written a piece suggesting that Tory blogs like mine and ConservativeHome need to do more to defend ourselves from increasingly vocal attacks. He cites the recent attacks from Melissa Kite as a case in point. This is his whole post...

Watlington has already extensive chronicled the rise of the Tory bloggers
and the genius of leading bloggers like Iain Dale and ConservativeHome (see Is a new Conservative Coalition emerging in the UK?, Is it the end of the centralised Conservative Party as we know it?, and Tim Montgomerie, Iain Dale and Stephan Shakespeare: The true authors of the revival in Conservative fortunes?). However, despite their success, these bloggers have one signficant flaw. At best they do not do enough to stop misrepresentation by their critics, at worst they allow themselves to be smeared by their opponents. This flaw has been highlighted in recent times by the Melissa Kite tantrums (see Melissa Kite bites back) about Iain Dale and Tim Montgomerie's criticism of her piece on the forthcoming Tory frontbench reshuffle. For Miss Kite, these blogs are representatives of the "Christian reactionary right". Even for David Cameron and his entourage, ConservativeHome is viewed as "a right wing debating society" for grassroots malcontents (as he hinted in an answer to a question at a press conference today by Tim Montgomerie).

The smear campaigns by the opponents of ConservativeHome is very successful - it allows uber-modernisers in the Conservative Party to benchmark their policies against the reaction of the "right wingers" on ConservativeHome. It permits people to suggest that Iain Dale is just David Davis's vicar on earth - something he patently is not. The effect of all this is to play into the hands of the left – who try and "expose" Iain Dale and ConservativeHome as the true extremist voice of the Conservative Party - witness Tom Watson's (Gordon Brown's boot boy thug) nasty blogs which attempt to trash Iain Dale, Montgomerie and other Tory bloggers like Dizzy and such like.

Of course nothing could be further from the truth. Not only is Iain Dale a remarkable and shrewd character with real friends at Westminster, he is also a highly talented moderate voice who has helped transform Tory blogging in this country. Similarly, Tim Montgomerie has turned ConservativeHome into the first real voice of compassionate conservatism in many a year.

But these blogs need to do more to counter their opponents. ConservativeHome in particular should have more articles and comments from people in the centre and left in the party. They should also hook up with left leaning organisations like Mainstream and the Tory Reform Group and look to campaign for policies on which they are allied. Perhaps ConservativeHome should develop a section exclusively devoted to explaining the broad roots of the website and have a strapline saying "ConservativeHome - representing the mainstream of the Conservative Party". There will come a time when Tory blogs like ConservativeHome and Iain Dale will replace the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph as the true voice of Conservatism in this country. ConservativeHome in particular has the power to become an incredibly powerful medium in its own right, representing thousands of Tory activists. But it will only do so if it destroys the smears of its enemies and the misrepresentation
from its critics.

He certainly has a point. I deliberately did not respond to Melissa Kite's piece on the Spectator blog and my response to her article yesterday was much weaker than I would really have liked as her article was even more flawed than the original one I fisked. But I see no point in entering a war with her.

The left of centre blogs have decided to target me and ConservativeHome in particular. I find some of things they write about us hilarious and others downright insulting. But if you think my face looks bovvered you'd be wrong. The fact that they attack us shows they are concerned by the impact we are having - not on setting the political weather, but by influencing media agendas.

The left have lost the blogging war, if ever there was one. Even LibDem blogs are far more readable and influential than the left wing blogosphere. The left can't understand why Tim Montgomerie appears repeatedly on Newsnight to talk about Conservative politics when not a single representative from the left wing blogosphere ever gets invited on. It's because they have very little of interest to say. They know it and the media knows it.

But Watlington has a point. Maybe we on the right are too guarded in responding to criticism. My lack of response to Melissa Kite was in part because I refused to fall into the trap which she had set. Any response would have been strong in argument and in language. And that's what she cannot seem to cope with. She accuses Tory bloggers of being mysogynist without understanding that by accusing us of something so ridiculous she perpetuates the myth that female journalists are somehow a downtrodden, weaker form of her male counterparts. She belongs to a group of female journalists who hunt as a pack and have lunches with politicians which no male journalist is allowed to attend. Nothing wrong with that, particularly, but imagine the howls of outrage if a group of male journalists decided to prevent female journalists from attending a lunch with a politician. The likes of Melissa Kite would be among the first to man (or person) the barricades. (CORRECTION: Mark Clarke points our in the comments that in fact MK does not attend these lunches. Apologies for the error, but the wider point still stands).

The other point is that whenever bloggers do hit back, and then other people rail in behind them, they are accused of 'sock puppetry' - i.e. overtly encouraging others to support them. I have even been accused by some left wing bloggers of writing anonymous comments on my own site, as if I hadn't got enough of a sad life already. There is no arguing with these people. They have an agenda and we on the right had better recognise it. There was a time when I thought I could use sweet reason with them. It doesn't work.

But what I cannot abide are flame wars. Some of the blogs on the pseudo-left specialise in trying to start these in order to increase attention to themselves and drive traffic their way. Some on the right are not averse to this either, it has to be said. These never end in victory for anyone and should not be entered into lightly.

So while I think that while Watlington makes his point very well, choosing your battles is very important. It would be completely counterproductive to overreact to any minor criticism, but he's probably right about Melissa Kite's attacks in the Spectator and the Telegraph. Tim and I should have been far more robust in our responses.

UPDATE: Dizzy's response HERE.


David Anthony said...

Like anything else, in the end, the public will decide. Blog readership is rising, newspaper readership is declining. It will be a few years before an equilibrium will be reached.

And like anyhting else, all publicity is good publicity ... i'm sure you will have benefited from article.

I sense a Telegraph article coming on...

Anonymous said...

I'm annoyed at Caroline Flint who forced Webcameron to censor their forum last week. Adam Boulton presented the same puerile post as on Webcameron - yet Flint had a go at The Tories. Yawn!!!

Little Black Sambo said...

You are dead right.
Incidentally, Melissa says you "flisked" her - so what did you do exactly?

David Anthony said...

I thought she said he 'frisked' her .. which would be a cause for complaint

Anonymous said...

This all seems to be getting rather silly -- certainly if you base your concerns on la Kite's efforts. I didn't think her original article was worth dignifying with the solemn fisking you gave it. She just came across as surprisingly gauche for a political reporter. In her subsequent replies she came across more like a child of 12 playing at grown-up journalism. Why bother to take such things so seriously? As for people setting up Cons-Home as a gang of right-wing crazies, surely this is just par for the course in politics -- the blogosphere equivalent of saying "Torygraph" instead of "Telegraph" and characterising all that journal's readers as Colonel Blimp or Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells. A bit unfair maybe, but not really a fully fledged blood-libel, is it?

Anonymous said...

"Not only is Iain Dale a remarkable and shrewd character with real friends at Westminster, he is also a highly talented moderate voice who has helped transform Tory blogging in this country." That is just about justified, but 'genius' ? That really is over-egging it.

As for defending oneself, well, my old adage is that if someone calls you 'ginger' it is unlikely to upset you if you don't have ginger hair. So people only tend to respond [and I am generalising here] 'if the cap fits'. Ignoring people is usually the best way of dealing with them, unless they are spreading malicious falsehoods. And even then beware that anything you don't rebut will be taken to be fact.

The Portuguese police give a useful guide here. By keeping 'schtum' the news people are reduced to facile, idle speculation from their fevered imagination. Now who does that remind you of..?

p.s. Like lbs, I am wondering where this 'fisking' verb has come from?

Please don't tell me if it has its source in that wonderful, brave independent, thought-provoking and award - winning journo, robert fisk

nadds said...

Before blogging, I felt like I had no voice. Having worked in media manipulation for business for many years, I knew the MSM news agenda was a complete one sided con. Then in a Smirnoff moment you and Guido appeared from the interweb

The Labour lot are just like they all used to be when I was a student in the early 80's when they simply could not understand that anyone could not see that they were right, Thatcher was wrong, and we'll kick your head in if you disagree. Me any many chums had much fun winding these muppets up.

I don't really have my own blog, just some crap to get a blogger address.

What I do use is you and Guido for decent debate; Cif to write to Polly every week and the Huffington Post just to see what the non neocon Yanks think

There's now somewhere to kind of talk and get it off your chest about this disgraceful government

Nu lab hate it because they are all the control freak students of the 70s and 80's

I know so many folk who are not web interested at all, but completely agree with the blogger view of the world - but don't know how to express it

BTW, if Dave & co get up to same tricks as phony T and the fister, I'll be giving them as much shit as they deserve in the future

Sackerson said...

If Melissa Kite truly does use the phrase "Christian reactionary Right" she knows even less than you think. I recently had a long and intense political-theological debate with a Christian from Mozambique who maintains that it is in line with Christ's mission to bring about the new Kingdom with weaponry - to defend the poor and oppressed. See also South American liberation theology. The British faux-intelligentsia still think of Christianity in cliches: it's either All Gas And Gaiters or foam-flecked Jerry Falwell. They seem to have little idea what's brewing in the more vigorous and growing branches of the Church worldwide.

Anonymous said...

I cant remember whose piece Melissa Kite was covering for, but the best part of her prose was the bit at the end that said ..
"Joe Bloggs will be back next week".

Anonymous said...

Melissa Kite? I dare say I might have browsed her stuff in a paper at some time or other but I didn't know the name. I do now because you have mentioned her on your blog.
I'd like to find more stuff that is fun or interesting to read on the left but I get fed up looking for something decent. Sometimes there are good links to follow here. I don't give a shit if Kelissa Mite doesn't like your style, I do, to me it goes beyond Conservatism and strikes a cord of gentile rabble rousing suitable for all tastes. Keep at it!

The Military Wing Of The BBC said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Military Wing Of The BBC said...

ITV currently running "Greatest Living Briton"
choose from

1.The Queen
2.Robbie Williams
3.Paul McCartney
4.Julie Andrews
5.Mrs Thatcher

To vote for Baroness Thatcher phone

09011 32 23 05


calls will cost you 50p
a small price to pay to wind up those BBC bed wetting types.

Anonymous said...

'gentile' sorry I meant to say 'genteel'. A watsit slip?

Anonymous said...

Shit. I've just seen Gordon "I bring an end to the celebrity culture" Brown turn up on "The Greatest Living Britons" show along with Jimmy Carr and Kate Thornton. He tried to tell a couple of jokes. It was painful. Instead of the jaw dropping mannerism, he's now developed the Frankie Howard technique of pursing his lips while waiting for an audience reaction.
Or perhaps I've just had a nightmare and imagined the whole thing.

Anonymous said...

I think there is a wider point here, The Tory Party itself should be more aggressive in defending itself. Where are the calls for Hodge to be sacked for blatant racism today, why are the Tory front bench not more aggressive when they are presented with endless NuLabour sleaze, where was the outcry over rendition flights etc etc

The Tory Party are still afraid of their own shadow and the one thing that could derail them is their obvious lack of self-belief. The recent elections should at least show the country have finally runbled this most vile and corrupt Labour government but the public need a strong opposition.

The Tory bloggers are streets ahead of the left because the majority of the public actually believe in what they say. I am convinced that the public would have a high regard for Ian and others as they get more exposure.

Listen to that wanker jack straw everyday in the house to understand the sheer nastiness of this government. The public are sick of these liars and the Tory 'universe' needs to stand up and be counted.

Man in a Shed said...

Iain - if the TRG have a web site and it says anything interesting then I've never come across it. I just remember them as the provisional wing of the SDP from my student days. They had about two supporters, but a lot of help from senior party grandees.

Blogging is the free market of democracy. If you don't like what someone posts, then you don't have to read them.

I rather suspect the Melissa Kite thing is part of a wider strategy to manoeuvre ConservativeHome to a point where it can be denounced. Waiting for a Patrick Mercer moment. For that burning of the Reichstag when more drastic action can be justified. (Paranoid - a right wing blogger ? Ok maybe a little, but as they say just because your paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you.)

What perhaps isn't realised is that its ConservativeHome that's keep a very active part of the party on side. The sound of ripping party membership cards would have been a lot louder last week without their good services.

Anonymous said...

I think Watlington's prose style and hs political 'argument' (sic) are both absolute drivel Iain - you are an absolute emperor in the company of such pygmies. But then you start to praise (first faintly then building up to a wee crescendo) the trivial twaddle that masquerades within Watlington as logic so. . . perhaps he has a point?

Anonymous said...

"1.The Queen
2.Robbie Williams
3.Paul McCartney
4.Julie Andrews
5.Mrs Thatcher

Are you SURE these are different individuals?

Anonymous said...

"A watsit slip? "

You being circumspectorily circumscribed?

Anonymous said...

Dizzy's blog contains this quote from "Ellee":

"I think Iain and Tim handle themselves brilliantly."

Are you sure there's not a secret web-cam on your nocturnal outpourings Iain?

Anonymous said...

Ian why respond?

You dissected her amateur article on the reshuffle (fisked you called it). She was just making mischief and as such is not a friend of the Conservatives.

Just carry on growing and building the alternative media to get across the Conservative voice.

The other part is we need to build a coalition of the centre right and discourage attacks and separate parties.

We need a coalition to defeat the left just as they created a coalition in the mid-90s between Labour and Lib Dems.

Anonymous said...

For Miss Kite, these blogs are representatives of the "Christian reactionary right".

So we know that Melissa Kite is not Christian, but simply a detestable bigot.

She should be much more respectful of religion and cease to be a sneering Anti-Christian

Anonymous said...

Melissa Kite

Deputy Political Editor of The Sunday Telegraph

Passionate is not a word I would use to describe just anyone, but Linda Jones certainly does bring passion to everything she does.

I was privileged to work in a junior capacity to Linda when we were both journalists on The Worcester Evening News, and learnt much of what I still use today from watching her operate: her nose for a story, her 100% dedication to the job, her passion for presenting the end product properly.

People with real journalistic experience are hard to find these days in the overpopulated world of PR and media relations, where it is often hard to see the wood for the trees. But Linda is the genuine article.

I'm certainly very grateful to her!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps it's a question of being true to yourself, Iain. Isn't it largely the fact that you are true to yourself - a reasonably honest moderate who thinks like the average person in the street, one of us in other words - that your blog has such broad appeal?

Would your blog suffer if you tried to become an attack dog at times, which anyway is really not your style? I think so.

You have your own means of dealing with fools like Kite and smear campaigns by nulab. Your tolerant yet firm responses seem to me to be very effective in quickly damping down attempted flame wars and countering Melissa style attacks. Failing that, ban them :)

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

As for Cameron and his spin master, their problem is surely just plain old green eyed jealousy. They crave the popularity of your site and CH's for webcameron.

Well they're the ones who need to wake up and smell the coffee. Contributors are driven away by their periodic arrogant decrees and refusal to engage in proper debate - a dictatorial style all too horribly reminiscent of Blair and his bunker.

Auntie Flo'

Letterman said...

No keep the moral high ground and stay out of these little skirmishes. Oh and don't get too complacent about your place at the top, there's certainly a lot to be said for opposition blogs as the Democrats in the States have found but it may be more difficult if your side gets in.

Anonymous said...

If people read your blog and appreciate it, why indulge disenters and the miffed with your attention? Forensically dissecting sloppy or scurilious articles in the dead tree press is a useful public service - keep it up.

Chris Paul said...

Watlington is talking about the Tory left, not the left left.

Anonymous said...

ITV currently running "Greatest Living Blogger"
choose from

1.Recess Monkey
2.British Bullshit Foundation
3.Luke Akehurst
4.Chris Paul
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To vote for Jailhouse Lawyer phone

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calls will cost you 50p
a small price to pay to wind up those tory boy bloggers who strangely were not shortlisted.

Anonymous said...

In the glorious words of the offensive joke that did the rounds a few years back...

"Arguing on the internet is a bit like running in the special Olympics. Even if you win you're still retarded."

Anonymous said...

it's clear that she is anti-Christian and that's all she needed to say. how can anyone take someone like that seriously?

the rise in popularity of conservative blogs is a fact, something which this type journalist has forgotten. burying your head in the sand is not a mature reaction to it.

the allegation of sexism is also ridiculous.

Pogo said...

In my opinion, much of the success of the conservative / libertarian / right-ish wing blogs is that they, by and large, deliver bucketloads of good old-fashioned "common sense"... Something lacking in the Left, the MSM and sadly, the mainstream political parties.

Anonymous said...

Its clear she raised this whole row to gain fame and notoriety. You have fallen for it hook, line and sinker!

Anonymous said...

It's hard to take anyone seriously who suggests doing anything with TRG other than lining them up against a wall and shooting them.

BJ said...

*smacks head on desk*

No Iain (and other bloggers, and journalists), please don't fill up bandwidth with increasing amounts of ridiculous and petty bitching which is interesting to an exponentially decreasing number of people.

Just concentrate on the bits of the Home Office and the NHS which are a disgrace, and which politicians are shagging each other, and other fun things. That's what REAL people actually want to READ.

Anonymous said...

Please god don't get the bloody TRG on here or ConHome.

Let them flake off to the Liberals, please.

Newmania said...

I could have sworn I just commented here .Whats up ?

Anonymous said...

Never mind bloggers!What about Cons. members defending themselves?
Boy Dave is saying grammar school supporters are supporting "ideological self indulgence"----HOW THEN WOULD HE DESCRIBE ETON?

Anonymous said...


Puffy thinks God selected those who go to Eton by making their parents filthy rich from inherited is a sort of Divine Preselection without of the mysteries of the universe only known to those in the Grand Lodge

Anonymous said...

Eton Dave on radio 4.(Today)
If you want to know what Etonian arrogance sounds like please listen to the interview.
He still hasn't worked out the bit about chucking the spade out of the hole.
Enough is enough-this kid has done enough damage.

Unknown said...

When that pretty broad Melissa attacks you, she is doing you a favour in terms of good exposure. When you frisk her, you likewise are helping her, by taking seriously, and giving her space.

You help her; she helps you. You are not trying to censor each other. And the problem is?

Anonymous said...

Poor Ms Melissa Kite - she really doesn't understand the internet does she?

She will be remembered on google as a luddite who railed against the progress of the internet. She is somebody any newspaper shareholder would love to have writing for them - NOT.

Anonymous said...

I see roadpricing bill is on the blocks - makes a mockery of Gordo's pledge to 'listen and learn' during his campaign.

This is Camerons chance to fatally wound Gordo and effectively end his hopes of winning the next GE. It is about time someone started a "NO MORE TAX" campaign. Just how much more tax does this government need to keep the books balanced? It is evident that the government is facing a massive funding crisis as EVERY new policy revolves around raising money. HIPs, road tax, pay as you throw etc etc

It must end sometime......where has all the money gone???

Newmania said...

JILTED JOHN- I think you are quite right there and had we not been in a period of astonishing global propserity we would have experienced the usual Labour crisis a long time ago. I think Brown may go for some desperate wriggling and it is important that , unlike on pensions, he doesn`t get away with it for a few years .

Anonymous said...

Oh lord.
Please get Dave away from John Humphrys.

Anonymous said...

I suppose Bill Deeds weekly piece in the Telegraph is a blog of sorts. He seems to have survived and continues to exert influence in an old fashioned, gentlemanly way.

Maybe his style is a little too subtle for many of today's comprehensively ill educated, effing and blinding citizens - or maybe not. For sure he studiously plays the ball and not the man.

Respect - as AliG might say.

Anonymous said...

Iain, when was the last time you had a successful conversation with a drunk down&out on a bus? Because, that is what those people are. They'll argue the toss and then some, just so they can hear themselves talking. You also write kack sometimes, like the hysterical stuff about people smoking cannabis, despite being smart enough to know that not every toker is a criminal in the same way that not every gay man is a paedophile. Stupid stuff like that is often best ignored, people shut up when no-one listens to them. Life is too short to baby every fool into sanity ;)

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know why ConsHome doesn't include Dave in it's Shadow popularity poll?

Anonymous said...

Observer and others said...


Excellent point. So, come on then, Mr Cameron, this comprenhensive school educated woman would like you to do just that.


Also, what sort of ideological self indulgence on your part persuades you to send your daughter to an elitist faith school?

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Off topic but worth despairing about:

Tax credit errors and fraud 'to hit £9bn',,2085282,00.html
'The government's tax credit scheme was branded "a shambles" yesterday after it was alleged that the cost of fraud and poor administration was likely to be more than £9bn in its first three years - 50% more than previous estimates.'

Unsworth said...

One has to decide whether such attacks actually merit any response.

That, of course, is a measure of one's opinion of the quality of a) the comment, and/or b) the commenter.

In the case of Kite, why bother?

Anonymous said...

If attacked, this represents a victory: you have been noticed and your attacker feels threatened by it.

If attacked, this represents good intelligence: one knows more precisely where to plant the next laser-guided bovver boot

If attacked, bide your time, then get the stiletto out and slip it gently between their ribs and you will, I think, find that they don't like it up 'em.

If attacked, bide your time and wait until, like the Hun, come at them from the sun at a time and place of your choosing.

With thanks to Sun-Tzu and Clausewitz, there is nothing to fear from this leftish rabble.

Anonymous said...

Well I thought it was funny Mr Dale... I herebye apologise for suggesting Melissa (Comment deleted)

Anonymous said...

Auntie Flo'

May 22, 2007 9:46 AM

Quite so. I bet Mr Cameron won't be found dealing with this on his web-site.

I reckon that what has really upset many Conservatives was the lack of debate before this rather Stalinist edit was issued. This after months of "We're waiting for all these Policy reviews to report" whenever a policy question is raised.

Cameron you are rapidly loosing your credability in the Tory Party.

Newmania said...


Please don't tell me if it has its source in that wonderful, brave independent, thought-provoking and award - winning journo, robert fisk

It does and I think it goes back to an article he wrote when he was stoned and mugged and claimed that he felt he deserved it as apart of a Western conspiracy to subjugate the peoples of the Middle East. Its in the Whats Left Book by Nick Coen.

"Kill Us We Deserve It" was the theme

Anonymous said...

Inverted snobbery is pointless. It doesn't matter where Cameron comes from - it matters where he is going.

All these right wing moaning minnie's should put up or shut up. The future is Cameron whether you like it or not...

Anonymous said...

canvas said...

All these right wing moaning minnie's should put up or shut up. The future is Cameron whether you like it or not...

Correction, canvas, this is still a democracy and it is the people who decide what the future is, not a dictatorship of one comprised of you.

Trying to stifle debate from any part of the political spectrum is what is really pointless, utopian - and so nulab. So I'm not a all surprised that this is what canvas who describes her(him?)self as 'a wee bit of a Socialist' falls back on.

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Auntie, Dearest,

The Tory Party voted Cameron in as Leader. All this back stabbing and bitching by the right wing element is not only unhelpful - but it reflects badly on the Conservative Party as a whole.

Cameron will drag the old style Tories into the 21st century whether they like it or not. If they don't like it - that's tough. :)

Anonymous said...

canvas said on webcameron:

"It's time for a new generation to take over - whether it's David Cameron or David Miliband"

"I think it's more like a 'win - win' situation for Miliband. If Gordon does become leader he will make sure Miliband is kept close by (no matter what) - he knows how popular Miliband is - and he knows Miliband is a great politician..."

canvas has also said she(he?) might vote for Miliband if he stood against Cameron.

It seems that you have a rather flexible, hypocritical view of who exactly is the future then, canvas.

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

It aint so much what you do as the way you do it.Hiding in a classroom oop north while Willie does the biz is no way for an old Etonian to act.
What about a Bullingdon night out at conference to clear the air.And the restaurant.

Anonymous said...

canvas said on cameron rejects 7-20/5 2007, in topic Ian Dale:

"Who is auntie flo?"

canvas quoted Flo' from Ian Dale:
Well, look who we have here, canvas from webcameron, the 'wee bit of a socialist'. Has to be that canvas, no one else I know of uses that 'LoL' expression. You aren't going whine and demand that Iain restructures his whole blog to suit you as you do of DC on webcameron, are you canvas? It pees me off so much that I rarely look at webcameron now.

One other question, are you, as I've long suspected, really Steve Hilton (Auntie Flo')"
"How did Auntie Flo get this info if all the blogs have been wiped off WCTO?? Weird. Creepy." (canvas)

"Auntie Flo is is doing my brain in. Wonder what Auntie Flo's WCTO user name is?? (canvas)

Why don't you ask Auntie Flo, canvas?

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Auntie Flo, you are doing my brain in - bigtime. LoL Are you are some kind of creepy Tory troll? Or are you Tizzy? LoL :)

As for your very 'selective cut and paste' jobs - so what?! At the next general election I will vote for whoever I think is best for the country. I am under no obligation to declare my intentions to you - right here - right now.

I do like David Miliband - and I do like David Cameron. I think Cameron has great potential to be an excellent Prime Minister. So what? I don't like Gordon Brown. And yes -I do have 'wee socialist tendencies'. Once again, so what?

I think the Conservative Party are completely unelectable without Cameron as leader. He is the voice of the future - and his own party can't even see it. The right wing old guard are their own worst enemies. Cameron has got to modernise a party that is SO stuck in the past - it's unbelievable. It's a tall order. I hope he does it.

Anonymous said...

jailhouselawyer said...

Of course Watlington is wrong to describe Iain Dale as a genius. But right to describe him as flawed. That is not as in flawed genius, rather it is in flawed character which leads to a flawed thinking and the consequence is a flawed logic.

"If they have an agenda there's no reasoning with them", this was Iain Dale's response on 18DS to criticisms of him and his blogging. Iain Dale likes to play to his rules or he takes his football home with him. He was unable to convince a selection committee that he was suitable to become a MP. The pussycat is now limping around with a sore paw. Get over it and move on. Some people are cut out to be movers and shakers, whilst others are destined to be arm chair critics. Get yourself a comfortable armchair it will make you feel better.

Anonymous said...

Surely that's the point of an interactive media - you will get attacked in real time.

I suspect what really cheeses newspapers columnists off is that essentially lots of people do a job as good as them for free.

Columnists are just stone-age bloggers who get paid for it.

Anonymous said...

canvas said:

Auntie Flow, you are doing my brain in - big-time. Loll Are you are some kind of creepy Tory troll? Or are you Tizzy? Loll :)
.....I am under no obligation to declare my [Voting] intentions to you - right here - right now.

canvas, I've never been a Tory, I'm not a troll and have as much right to submit my views to Iain's blog as you have. It's up to Iain to decide what's posted or remains on his site. I'm not creepy, either, and would be grateful if you would not apply these typical nasty, smear tactics of yours to me.

If you post your nulab, Conservative hating, diatribes here, or suggest you support Cameron while making contradictory claims that you support, and might vote for, Miliband elsewhere, I've every right to submit posts to Iain's blog pointing this out. It's up to Iain whether or not he allows posts. And my quotes are not distortions, I give references that anyone can check.

Not surprised that you dislike mention of your contradictory statements about supporting Cameron and Miliband- who wouldn't?

Auntie Flo'

Chris Paul said...

Iain are you really saying that no clubby boys only lunches occur between gentlemen of the press and members of parliament? If so I do think you may be sadly mistaken about that.

Anonymous said...

Is "anti-christian" code?

Iain Dale said...

Jailhouselawyer, I bow to your superior knowledge of flawed characters. You just have to look in the mirror I suppose.

Chris Paul, I am indeed saying that. There is no organised Male Only lunching society for journalists. But there is a female only one. That is a fact which not even you can dispute.

Anonymous said...

Dear Auntie Flo - Not only have you had a huge sense of humour failure - but you are just wrong wrong wrong in your assumptions about me.

Yes, Correct, I'm not at all fond of Edward Leigh and the right wing Tory 'Old Guard'. So what?! Neither is David Cameron.

I like David Cameron and I think he is doing a good job. If he continues to impress me then I might vote for him in the future. So what?!

I like David Miliband - but he didn't stand against Gordon Brown. I think that is a shame - but - So what?!

I can like two people from two different political parties without it being a crime! LoL :)

What exactly is your point? I'm baffled.

Of course you should be able to express yourself freely - and me too.

What's your beef? Don't try to bully me. What's the point?


PS> What is your Webcameron user name then?

Mark Clarke said...

It is a well known fact in the lobby that Melissa Kite does not attend the women's lobby lunches.

It appears that your source for this is erroneous. You might want to check your sources a little more carefully in future before you write such inaccuracies.

Personally, I would correct this...

jailhouselawyer said...

Iain: Have you looked in the mirror recently? I have posted my response and the picture of a Tory troll does bear a passing resemblance to yourself...

Anonymous said...

why does mark Clarke keep rushing to defend Melissa Kite? Very interesting!

smallheathen said...

At the time of the resignation of Estelle Morris from her ministerial post (she was my MP), Melissa Kite subjected us to her metropolitan wisdom on a 5Live panel by commenting on Ms Morris's 'West Midlands accent'.

I fired off an email to 5Live pointing out that, while Morris represented a West Midlands constituency, her accent is clearly Northern English (Manchester. I believe) and that perhaps Ms Kite might enjoy an occasional trip outside the M25 Social Safet Zone.

Of course, my email was not read out.

Anonymous said...

The left have lost the blogging war

What a stupid comment.

How's the "real" war in Iraq going Iain?